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.
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.
Not sure what to make of this. It is pretty stock standard go inside person’s consciousness, figure out their baggage, correct them, and then they wake up. In this case followed by a quick fight sequence and a minor reveal about Gran’s father. All and all, pretty ordinary fare for fantasy/adventure stories.
I’m guessing the whole sequence probably would have been more touching if I actually liked either Gran or Lyria. While I don’t dislike them, I think both are pretty ordinary as characters. They don’t do anything to really set themselves a part or to have depth, or even be memorable. So when Lyria says she wants to disappear, I’m kind of okay with that. Give your full power to Gran and disappear. Gran seems to feel differently but as an audience member I wasn’t overly invested in this conflict.
I think the only moment this episode where I really sat up and took notice was when Rosetta dropped that minor bomb-shell about Gran’s father, that Gran didn’t even hear and it certainly wasn’t explained given it was pretty much the end of the episode. It had kind of seemed like the story had forgotten that Gran was looking for his father and now they just kind of drop that in there.
Anyway, this still remains perfectly watchable and not a lot else. It looks pretty if that helps.
According to MAL this has 14 episodes, so do we assume they aren’t getting to the island of the Astrals in this season because it seems like our current goal is to save Lyria. Really, that’s been my issue with this for awhile. They keep flitting from goal to goal without really having any sense of urgency or need to achieve anything much. Lyria’s current condition seems like an interesting enough episode goal but doesn’t feel like a worthy enough end of season issue and yet given the timing its either going to be resolved next episode without any fuss or it is going to be the final challenge for the season, and either way it won’t be overly satisfying.
Much like the fate of Lyria’s hairclip really.
That was a short lived symbol.
Anyway, I’m done taking the empire as any kind of serious threat given the poor showing they gave again this week. Early on I kind of felt we were supposed to feel these guys were actually a problem but they’ve increasingly shown themselves to be laughable at best. One has to wonder why they have any power at all given it seems ridiculously easy to make them run for their lives.
Granblue remains perfectly watchable but isn’t exactly compelling.
While there is nothing wrong with a show foreshadowing its plot (I would argue its fairly necessary if you want any kind of cohesion), when an entire episode seems to serve no other purpose but setting up a single event and it does it in a heavy handed and fairly bland manner you have to wonder how the writers thought they were providing entertainment as well as setting up a plot point.
From the very start of this episode we get that there is a heavy Gran and Lyria focus. She’s having nightmares and he’s comforting her with the usual certainty that comes from unimaginative anime protagonists. There’s some other stuff on the beach and Lyria’s hearing a faint voice that Gran can’t hear. Later the group get split up to do odd jobs for an old friend of Rackham’s and Lyria and Gran get sent together to do odd jobs. They have a great time shopping but you just have to wonder why we don’t get to see Io healing those who got wounded fighting monsters or Katalina training soldiers. Both plot points seem more interesting than Gran and Lyria sightseeing but this episode isn’t particularly interested in the story going on with the war or anything else. All this episode is interested in is setting up the dramatic finish which of course is supposed to be shocking but given there was no other way for the episode to end was kind of eye-roll worthy.
Anyway, if there was any doubt where this story was going, just listen to the conversation when Gran buys the hair clip for Lyria and you just know there are no other options. She’s about to get kidnapped. It was pretty clear earlier that’s where we were going but that conversation just keeps hammering that point over and over and over again like no one has ever seen this development in a story before.
The only thing I’m left wondering about is if we’ll finally get to address the point of how far and how long Lyria and Gran can be separated with the whole soul sharing thing.
Rackam has definitely become my favourite character in this show (mostly due to a lack of competition but also because he kind of says what is on my mind in most scenes). Originally, I quite enjoyed Katalina as a character but since episode 3 she’s really just become background noise and hasn’t done much of anything.
This episode they find the Archduke and then they fight a giant robot thing before they all have a heart to heart, cry and make up. Okay, there’s probably a bit more to it than that and they do get another piece of the skymap, but mostly this show remains pretty flat and ordinary. There’s nothing specifically wrong with anything that happens other than it is just not that interesting.
Things neither improve nor get worse in this latest episode of Granblue Fantasy. We meet a new character, named Io, who is obnoxiously cute but can use magic so is probably a good addition to the team. They agree to look for the missing archduke of the island they’ve just arrived on (because of course when you are hiding from the empire sticking your nose into political situations is the best way to hide). The logic of this show continues to hurt just a little bit.
However, the episode was mostly fine and entertaining as long as you didn’t think too hard. The one point I really disliked was when Lyria asked the little shop keeper how she managed to get to the island before them (given she spoke to them on the last island and was still there when they left). We get one of those really annoying non-answers in response.
Right, that’s really deep but back to how did you get there?
Petty complaints aside, this remains kind of cute but kind of pointless at the same time.
Stories like this always make me ask the same question; how does the empire even function? When every representative you meet of said empire is conspiring against every other, cruel and stupid, malicious, or crazy, it really makes you wonder why the entire empire hasn’t just imploded. They haven’t given us any reason for the empire to be evil, they just are because… plot?
Other than that, this episode again raised the question of how far away can Gran get from Lyria given he goes down to the dock while she stays in the building. Not that they are separated for long but they’ve given us no real guidelines on how separated they can be at this point.
Also, the agents from the previous episode show up for a flashy but mostly pointless battle.
This show works on the surface and I guess if you just kind of tune out and watch passively it is all well and good, but so far that’s all it is managing to deliver. Without actual motive from the antagonists or overall goal from the protagonists (other than not get caught by the antagonists) it is really all just reactionary and not very compelling.
So, they crashed the airship. Surprising how that happens when you don’t have a pilot (I mean helmsman) to fly the thing. Actually, this is the episode where Katalina just kind of loses her cool look. From episode 1 she’s been cool and the most interesting of the cast. This episode she’s pretty lame. And part of the reason is because we have to make the new guy look cool.
Rackman the helmsman who spends all his time repairing an old crashed airship. I wonder if he’ll end up being helpful (eyeroll).
Okay, I’m mocking a lot but that’s because as watchable as this episode was, it kind of doesn’t do much. We run around the island for a while, run into potential empire agents, and then while our main group are out of town to ask Rackman if he’ll be their helmsman, an army from the empire led by shrimp-crazy-guy shows up. It kind of sounds like it should be fun but mostly its just stepping through the motions and taking us along with it.
I had a very bad flashback to Crocodile Dundee while watching this (“That’s not a knife”). Only in this case it was more, “That’s not a fireball” right before the impossibly large dragon that looked like it escaped from a Final Fantasy game blew the hydra from last episode away (if you don’t get the reference, that’s fine because it’s both Australian and dated).
Anyway, this continues to be fairly generic but reasonable. Apparently saving Gran’s life involved Lyria sharing half her life force with him so now they can’t be separated (though no specifics on how far that means yet) so now of course Gran has to join Lyria and Katalina on their journey to a non-specific location (I believe Katalina first said it would be aimless to avoid pursuit). Then, some discussion later, it turns out they are actually going to head to the island of the Astrals which coincidentally is where Gran’s father said he went in a letter he sent his son. Look how well that works out for everyone.
I actually enjoyed this second episode and now that they are on the move I’m looking forward to what comes next. That said, there’s nothing in either the first two episodes that would make me recommend this to someone else if they weren’t already watching it.
Gran and the not flying lizard Vyrn live on an island doing their thing when a kind of girl gets blown out of an airship and lands in the forest. Gran of course goes to help and now they have a whole bunch of soldiers chasing them.
Most of this first episode passed by as inoffensive nothingness. It’s all very generic so far and other than learning that Katalina is amazing not a lot else has been revealed about the characters.
That said, it wasn’t bad to watch. There wasn’t any real moment or wow factor to be found, even with a hydra making an appearance, but it also wasn’t overly dull as Gran and Lyria ran about. There’s enough suggestion of things to come that I am going to stick with this for another couple of episodes at least and hopefully it can build on this.
A humble, but mostly less than half-assed, blog of an Otaku who still suffers from chuunibyou and was saved by Anime first, Manga then, just to be saved once again by Light Novels and Visual Novels; and thus wishes to share the beautiful world that is 2D. Yet, you will find mostly rants. Also available at 7thStyle.