Brave 10 Episode 1

Overview:

I found this on Crunchyroll after asking for a random episode of something and decided to give it a go. I had heard the name before but otherwise knew nothing about it so here is what the Crunchyoll write up told me:

Before the Warring States era came to a close, legend has it that Yukimura Sanada has been gathering ten warriors known as Sanada’s Brave 10, who have the power to change history.

Going to be honest, that’s not a lot to go on. But here I go.

Review:

I don’t like damsels in distress, I’m not a fan of guys who call a girl a b*tch within a day of meeting them, and I’m really not a fan of historical anime full of ninjas… wait why did I start this again?

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But for a random show and after rejecting the first five options that came up (mostly short format comedy), this actually didn’t look too bad and the opening sequence kind of reminded me of Katanagatari which I quite enjoyed even if it was more for the oddball main character than for anything else.

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Still, there was some great humour in this first episode, in amongst the insults and standard guy meets girl being pursued by ninjas (and of course she eats a ridiculous amount of food) and guy ends up having to protect the girl even though he’d really rather kill her. I’m actually going to give a shout out to the sound track for this as well. The sound effects as well as the music may be a little overdone in places but they certainly add some energy to what might otherwise be a stock standard first episode.

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These two are going to be best friends. You can tell.

I’ve had worst first impressions of shows and at 12 episodes this one seems worth checking out so here we go.

Brave 10 is available on Crunchyroll.


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The Royal Tutor Episode 12

Review:

I’m pretty happy with how this has resolved and feel a nice sense of completion here. Certainly there’s more story to be told but I’m really pretty happy here and now and don’t have much desire to watch on should there ever be a sequel. That’s mostly because the issue of the Royal Tutor is finalised and the other issues were never of all that much importance but rather served as the backdrop to what turned out to be a pretty reasonable series (though more on that when I get around to a whole series review of this show).

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This final episode shows us the culmination of the Prince’s growth and how when they combine their powers they can save the world… oh wait, that wasn’t right. By combining their individual strengths and working cooperatively they can convince a bunch of Lords to choose their candidate to be the royal tutor?

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As much as I enjoyed this, I wasn’t overly impressed with their impassioned speeches this episode. I kind of felt that after two days preparation they’d have had something a bit more polished prepared rather than just storm the council and spout platitudes, but its a minor nitpick in what has been a pretty enjoyable ride.

Full series review coming soonish.

The Royal Tutor is available on Crunchyroll.


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Hunter x Hunter Episodes 49 + 50

Review Episode 49:

I have to admit, Killua had a point with this imagery. Two Hisoka’s is terrifying just to imagine.

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What makes less sense is that Killua himself then spends the rest of the episode underestimating the opponent and the end result is pretty much as expected. The only thing that doesn’t make sense is why Killua and Gon aren’t already dead. Though I also have to wonder what the troupe members are doing just kind of loitering in their hide out. It seems like that would get dull. Or do they just arrange themselves on the rubble to make an impact when someone walks in? Anyway, as that episode just kind of left us hanging, onto the next.

Review Episode 50:

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As usual, angry Gon is not someone I’d like to face. While it never lasts long, when he’s burning bright he’s pretty intense. Still, not enough to escape from the whole troupe so probably just as well it ended up just being one member they had to escape from. I did like that this episode saw Killua lose his cool for once.

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He’s usually so composed that you forget how young he is. His flipping out at being overwhelmed and outmatched was pretty fun to watch but I’m glad Gon managed to snap him out of it. Looking forward to them meeting up with Kurapika.


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Akashic Records of a Bastard Magical Instructor Episode 12

Review:

This show kind of gave its best and worst in this final episode. It reminded us of the ridiculous outfits and ways it has treated its female cast even while making us laugh as Re=L threatens to take down Leos.

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It gave us a truly absurd wedding dress and what did they do to Sistine’s hair?

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We also had a villain whose motives were poorly explained and who seemed fairly mentally unbalanced which has become something of a trend for this series.

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That said, we also got a really cool magic fight and Glenn got some of his slightly cooler moments fairly reminiscent of the episode where he first started actually teaching magic and not being a complete waste of space.

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All and all, this episode concludes the whole Sistine marriage to Leos thing (which was kind of concluded before the episode only, who knew) and they at least remember that the Akashic Records are in the title of the show, but otherwise we’re still none the wiser about most of the other aspects of the world or storyline. While I didn’t hate this, I wasn’t exactly sitting on the edge of my seat either.

I’ll complete a full series review of this shortly.

Akashic Records of a Bastard Magical Instructor is available on Crunchyroll.


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Natsume Yuujinchou Season 6 Episode 11

Review – Some spoilers:

Can we get a season 7 announcement, please?

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This episode resumes the hunt for the study and as usual Natsume’s keen eyes and a deeper understanding of yokai and those who can clearly see yokai find the necessary clues that eventually lead the group to the study door. That said, Natori does have a moment of doubt about whether he should hear what Natsume has to say regarding the Book of Friends later in the episode.

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So as much as Natori continues to play the understanding guy they are leaving his character and his relationship to Natsume ambiguous right to the end. I find it fascinating how this show didn’t resolve this point but still made this feel satisfying. We did take another step in this relationship with Natsume ultimately explaining the situation with Reiko to Natori and we heard Natori’s response. First the one he said clearly to Natsume:

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And then the one he made sure Natsume didn’t hear:

It isn’t exactly a declaration that Natori is going to try to take the book or destroy it, but it kind of indicates Natori isn’t just going to say, ‘cool, you’re grandmother left you a really dangerous book’. It will be interesting to see how this progresses, assuming of course we get more of this show.

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The other point that has to be mentioned is that for the first time a yokai has suggested knowing a male relative of Natsume. We kind of knew he had to have family other than Reiko and his dead parents but they’ve never been mentioned. And as Natsume wonders later, what connection did a former relative of his have with the exorcists? It is obvious that Nanase of the Matoba clan had some sort of relationship with Reiko other than the one childhood encounter we’ve seen, but is Natsume more closely tied to the exorcists than he realises?

So this season is done and I’m really happy with how it has gone but will do a full review soon. That said, this is a show I always want more of.


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The Laughing Salesman Episode 12

Review:

While I’ve enjoyed this anime this season, I’m kind of glad this was the final episode because while its been enjoyable enough it was starting to become a little repetitious. It would have been nice to see the mould get broken once or twice but I’ll save further discussion of that for a whole series review.

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The first victim this week is someone who likes to play the victim after a chat room incident but given just a little bit of power became a first class bully. He didn’t even need much of a push from Moguro. I did like the representations of the avatars sitting around chatting though.

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The second victim needed a much harder sell initially but was just as rotten really. Both stories ended appropriately and Moguro went laughing onto a plane and away, somewhere.

Once again, neither character this week elicited much sympathy and there’s kind of a casual satisfaction in watching and waiting for the fall.  Anyway, I will post a full series review of this shortly.

The Laughing Salesman is available on Crunchyroll.


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Grimoire of Zero Episode 11

Review:

After all this build up to Thirteen, we found out his plan last week and this week Zero kindly asks him to stop and so he does. Okay, first they shoot coloured lights at each other and Zero reveals she purposefully wrote flaws into the incantations because even though she wanted to share magic she apparently didn’t want to not be the strongest (understandably really).

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So basically Thirteen just ceases to have any interest in the conflict he has set up and now apparently actually cares about repairing some of the damage he caused. Am I supposed to care that he now seems upset about Sorena’s death because I’m with the wolf guy. Thirteen did let Sorena die and he did nearly burn Albus. Okay, he didn’t start a plague. One thing he didn’t do.

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Seriously, it is very hard to take any of this conflict seriously when even the mastermind behind it walks away with only a brief moment of hesitation.

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And so we move toward the final episode because even though Thirteen no longer cares, all the pieces he set in motion are still heading toward self-destruction. It probably doesn’t help that most of the Sorcerer’s of Zero seem to lack logical thought processes and have already whipped themselves into a frenzy of mob-mentality. Logical arguments aren’t going to turn the tide here.

Grimoire of Zero is available on AnimeLab.


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The Eccentric Family Season 2 Episode 11

Review:

It is all happening this episode with all of the many little plots coming together fantastically for what looks like a great ending next week (or whenever I get to see it). Despite talking trains, evil imposters, caged tanuki, dreams where sons converse with their dead father, transforming giant tigers, and exploding factories, the strangest point this episode still goes to seeing Benten crying.

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Her relationship with Yasaburo has always been ambiguous and this point doesn’t do much to clarify given she clearly isn’t trying to save him but she will mourn the possibility of him being eaten in a very strange mirror of the nightmare he had in the last episode. Though, it isn’t as though Benten did anything to stop the inevitable rescue effort either.

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With everything starting to come out into the opening and the family ties being stronger than ever, I am really looking forward to how this resolves. This show understood what made season 1 special to those who watched it and has managed to really capture those parts in this sequel without feeling too much like a duplication (though there have definitely been some moments where it feels a bit like an echo).

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Now if I could get a Nidaime/Benten showdown I’d be over the moon but given how the story has unfolded it doesn’t seem like that is on the cards.

The Eccentric Family is available on Crunchyroll.


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Haikyuu Episodes 48 + 49

Review Episode 48:

The team are all ready to go into the third set and we’re still moving those shining moments around the players from both teams, even spending some time getting backstory on player 16 from Aoba. Tsukishima is also getting his fair share of time to shine even though he kind of got a few good moments in the previous episodes.

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That said, about mid-way through we finally get Kageyama realising they need to use Hinata better and the focus switches to these two for the first time really in this match. As much as I’m not a big fan of Hinata, it seems weird he’s been so quiet for the past couple of episodes so I’m guessing this is going somewhere but I’ll have to wait and see where. My only other thought is that this game seems to be lasting forever (not in a bad way but it has been quite a number of episodes now).

Review Episode 49:

There are parallels and then there are parallels and this episode takes it to the extreme in the set’s final moments yet I guess it was kind of needed is Kageyama and Hinata were ever going to get over their previous loss. While there’s definitely a refocus of Hinata, the other characters aren’t forgotten and the whole team work very hard for every point they get (as do the opponents).

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This was a fairly thrilling conclusion to this game and then I had to remind myself this wasn’t meant to be the last game in the tournament but how do you top that?


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Granblue Fantasy Episode 12

Review:

All the way through this I just kept thinking it felt like the end of a season. It wasn’t giving us answers but it just felt like this was the final battle. Turns out episode 13 is an extra so that feeling wasn’t misplaced.

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So then I have to ask, what was the point? Yes, the journey continues and there are all these new characters with very cool fighting skills (meanwhile where were these guys during the last fight in this city) and all the old faces have returned but we’re no closer to the island of the astrals, Gran’s father, or knowing anything about Lyria. Though, Lyria did at least get a nice character point where she finally wants to know about herself. Still, 12 episodes of floating around, fighting the occasional primal beast, meeting people and the like; fun as it was, it really is kind of pointless.

Still, watch Gran win another fight? Okay.

Granblue Fantasy is available on Crunchyroll.


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