A Time For Choices

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Endro Episode 12 Review

I don’t have a huge amount to say about this final episode of Endro. It was, like most other episodes of Endro, cute and charming in it’s own way, played the tropes of its genre well with a few minor twists to keep things entertaining, and ultimately went for a saccharine ending that I really can’t fault it for. Overall, this anime reminds me a little bit of fairy floss (or I guess cotton candy depending on where you live). It looks pretty, kind of tastes great for a moment, but leaves you with very little substance.

Endro Episode 12 -Fai

I’ll probably look more at that idea when I review the series as a whole but this episode really didn’t deliver much in the way of surprises (and we are going to head into spoiler territory).

Endro Episode 12 - Mao
Now, who is a cranky demon lord?

To no one’s surprise, Yulia is feeling conflicted about the idea of fighting Mao even if it is to save the Princess. After a sob-story from the golem it becomes even more clear that this is one epic hero vs demon lord battle that just isn’t going to happen. The overall solution is a little trite but very in keeping with the story. I do however like the story’s overall commitment to characterisation.

Endro Episode 12 - The Hero's Party

When faced with a part of the story they’ve spun that doesn’t quite add up, the girls ultimately shrug it off with a ‘whatever’ and get on with having fun. It keep beautifully with their actions up until now where they ponder things briefly but never get too deep into anything before becoming distracted by something new and shiny.

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While ultimately we end up much where we started and it might seem like no advancement was made, it does feel like the characters are starting out a little wiser this time round and even if they make mistakes they’ll find a way to get through them.

Endro Episode 12 - Yulia
My Hero

In a season of fairly decent series, Endro isn’t topping my list but I’ve certainly had fun enough with this story and I’m kind of looking forward to doing my full series review of it.

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Karandi James
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Sometimes Endro Gets It Just Right

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Endro Episode 11 Review

Endro has a lot of downtime where it celebrates the cute girls being cute aspects of its story. For some, this is really appealing, and alone it would still make for a fairly watchable anime given the girls in question here are actually kind of fun as characters. For me, though, it isn’t that appealing. What has kept me watching this show, and at times quite appreciating it, is its ongoing retelling of the story of the hero defeating the demon lord. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it is subversive, but it most definitely takes a novel approach at times to the subject matter.

Endro - Episode 11 - Mao

Episode 11 of Endro, really manages to use this to its advantage. What starts out as another fairly fluff filled episode with the girls defeating a monster and asking to go to Mao’s house as a reward ends up taking us into a fairly dramatic climax that beautifully reconnects us with the opening of the show where the hero defeated the demon lord but stuffed up the spell sending them to the past. The fact that the story manages the subtle transition from fluffy nonsense to fairly serious narrative reveals in an incredibly tight scene and it does so without being in any way jarring is actually a relatively impressive feat and honestly you have to give credit to the ground work that each episode has laid behind this episode for it working.

Endro - Episode 11 - Yuusha

To put it briefly, the golem maid who served the demon lord is found without her memories (well puked out of a monster for reasons to do with anime cooking). After some incredibly cute montage scenes with Mao reconnecting with her in her new role as teacher, we gather the characters back at Mao’s house, this time with Princess Rona. Only this time the Princess has a legendary card that can unlock sealed memories.

Endro Episode 11

However, the golem, if she ever lost her memories at all, isn’t the only one who recovers lost memories and the girls suddenly remember their previous adventure. It is a classically understated moment and yet it literally changes everything.

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But, not content with that as a reveal and set up for the next episode, it takes this one further and so we end up more or less back at the beginning only this time with the demon lord and the hero’s party all knowing what transpired last time. It seems set for an amusing and interesting ending, and just in case you were concerned it was going to drop the cute girl thing and gentle amusements altogether, Mao’s reaction post credits is utterly hilarious. It is one of those priceless moments that describing won’t do justice and the only reason it works is because we’ve spent 11 episodes getting to know these characters. Still, that sequence alone makes this series worth watching to be honest.

Endro Episode 11

Really looking forward to seeing how it ends.

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Karandi James
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The Princess, The Hero, and Everyone Else

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Endro Episode 7 Review

When the Princess decides she wants to get to know the Hero’s companions, the audience is given an episode divided into three distinct segments each one having the Princess tail one of the companions for a day as they go about their business. While this could have been mind-numbingly dull, the Princess brings enough enthusiasm for both the companions and the history of previous companions to previous heroes to keep the episode bopping cutely along.

Endro Episode 7

I do feel that this episode missed an opportunity to expand on each of the three characters. With Seiran, Mather, and Fai each pretty much playing true to form, while it was cute and fun it didn’t add much to what we already knew about the characters. No hidden layers or unexpected elements here, just what you see is what you get.

Endro Episode 7

Again, that isn’t really a problem because the episode is light and frothy fun with the usual adorable antics at school, looking for Cartado or Fai’s eating contest. However, the tight focus on each one of these characters at various points provided space for them to be a little more fleshed out and I feel it is a bit of a pity that it wasn’t taken.

Endro Episode 7

Mao was also pretty absent from this episode but I feel that was deliberate given the focus really was on the Hero’s supporting characters. So while nothing overly special, this was enjoyable enough.

Endro Episode 8 Review

Episode 8 continues the focus on Princess Rona but this time she enlists Mao’s help to see the Hero in action. After spending time with the Hero and her friends day to day, Rona decides she wants to see the Hero facing a threat and unwilling to wait for one, she fabricates one.

Endro Episode 8 Rona and Mao

The end result is that the Hero’s party storms that ‘castle’ and takes on a range of threats, some less threatening than others before facing off against the Demon Lord while the Princess is trapped in a cage. Only, don’t expect a fight to the death, given the overall tone of this show, we end up getting a lesson about friendship and heroics before we all call it a day.

Endro Episode 8

While I didn’t find this episode quite as charming as the previous one, I do enjoy seeing Princess Rona becoming more of a character and less of a trope. She’s probably the character outside of Mao getting the most actual development in this story and while she’s a little bit over the top she’s quite fun.

If you’ve been enjoying Endro so far, this episode continues to be cute enough, a little bit of fantasy and action, a little bit of comedy, and a lot of friendship and pastel colours.

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ENDRO!: JUULIA CHARLDETTO
ENDRO!: JUULIA CHARLDETTO

A Princess in Pursuit of Her Hero

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Endro Episode 5 Review

For all that Endro has been pleasant enough over the opening episodes, this episode drew me right into this story. It isn’t that it does anything particularly unique as it is very much playing on the Princess tropes in introducing a new character, but it is doing it in such a way that it makes this anime really feel like it has its own ideas and a tone it really wants to set.

Endro Episode 5 Princess Rona

Plenty of anime have a Princess who believes she will marry a hero or has a hero and a Princess fall in love. The hero being a female didn’t deter the Princess in the least and that was kind of interesting as the Princess clearly forced her way into Yuusha’s life and then threw an entire festival to raise the status of the hero. While there are some good laughs here it is also clear that this anime isn’t going to blink away from the idea of two characters of the same sex falling in love. It takes this head on.

Endro Episode 5 Princess gushing over hero

And that is admirable in itself but they follow it up with actual character development for the Princess in the same episode. She goes from being infatuated with Yuusha because she is the hero to actually seeing Yuusha as a person and liking her even more. The whole episode is just good fun but it is full of so many little moments that raise questions, make a point, or just stick out as interesting that it is difficult to really talk about the episode without doing a scene by scene break down given the overall plot is Princess shows up and throws festival, hero saves things when they go wrong.

Endro Episode 5 Princess and Mao

I will say that Mao was really good this episode. She’s a character I haven’t really liked previously but her role this week was very well used and the hints the Princess is dropping that she knows who Mao is are interesting as I wonder where they are taking that plot line. All and all, while I haven’t been fully behind this anime, this episode took some excellent steps and getting me drawn in to the story.

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Now We’re Searching For Fortune and Glory – And Cats

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Endro Episode 3 Review

The girls are excited to be getting some practical quest experience from the guild and while at first I wasn’t overly excited (the story about the horned gorilla put me to sleep as much as the rest of Seira’s party), this episode actually managed to be pretty cute and charming. I don’t want to make assumptions, but Mao’s absence was conspicuous and as her plots, plans and laugh have been one of my least favourite parts of the show it now seems that the anime is significantly better without her presence.

Endro Episode 3 Cat Quest

While the episode is largely built around the ongoing gag of the characters getting the quest of finding a cat multiple days in a row, they manage to keep this fairly entertaining without lingering. By the time they finally get a non-cat finding quest they are actually surprised, but then they run into a young girl who has lost a cat and they go right back to searching for cats.

Endro Episode 3 The Hero Team

It is all just a bit of pastel coloured silliness but the bouncing dialogue between the girls, the short fight sequences, and the scene changes work well enough to keep this episode moving along. I definitely enjoyed it more this week than last though I don’t know that all that much happened.

Endro Episode 3 Cat Retrieved

Realistically, this anime still isn’t really something I’d rush to recommend or watch in the future, but if the episodes remained like this it could be some pleasant fluff for the season.

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The Important Qualities Of An Adventurous Leader

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Endro Episode 2 Review

As I watch four pastel girls go through the motions of a pyjama party discussing their favourite monsters and what they like about them (though they keep the actual subject hidden for a little bit to make it a punch line) I had to wonder what the appeal of this kind of show was. I get that there are plenty of fans of slice of life and cute girl shows but honestly this scene was actually less fascinating than watching my cat pursue a lizard across the floor of my study (I rescued the lizard, came back and watched the scene again).

Endro Episode 2 Seiran
I’m sure my cat would try.

That doesn’t for a minute make Endro actually a bad show. I can’t really compare it with all that many other cute girl or slice of life shows because normally I don’t really stick with them, but this anime functions just fine, each scene moves along, each character plays their role, it looks good enough and it intersperses action or physical comedy in amongst the talkier scenes to break things up a bit. Everything works but the vast majority of the content doesn’t actually appeal to me as an audience. Still, if I had the choice of watching this episode again or episode 2 of Grimms Notes I’d choose this one in a heart beat. This anime is actually functional as a narrative.

Now there were actually two parts of this episode that did interest me and will keep me watching despite this being well outside of my interest area so far. The first was the leadership decision. Mao, in another insidious plan (provided you find six year olds insidious) to break up the heroes’ party so that they won’t defeat the demon lord in the future declares that each team needs to choose a leader. The girls in the heroes’ party all assumed they were the leader and are shocked to find out they aren’t.

Endro Episode 2 Leader

Here I will give the show some credit. Instead of petty squabbling or attempts to bring other members of the team down, the girls diplomatically choose the mascot character as the leader (truly cute). When that idea gets shot down they each take a turn at being leader and fail abysmally. Because, as the girls realise, they all bring something to the party. Whether it is strength, brains, weirdness, or sheer luck, each of them has their own important qualities that are needed in a leader. The end result, they are all the leader. It’s a cute and novel solution and this was actually the part of the episode I ended up most engaged by.

The other part of the episode that actually made me think this might go somewhere interesting at some point, was that the Demon Lord realises that if things continue they’ll end up repeating the same actions as last time and the heroes will turn back time again and they’ll be stuck in a loop. One problem with this is the sequence the Demon Lord recalls with the girls casting the spell isn’t the same as what we saw in episode 1 so not sure why the discrepancy there. However, this show surprised me yet again by having Mao simply decide she won’t become the Demon Lord and instead she’ll just take it easy.

Endro Episode 2 Mao

Did the villain just take herself out of the picture? Does that mean her petty plots are done?

Endro isn’t really my kind of show and yet I’m still kind of glad Cactus Matt suggested I watch it because there’s been some interesting moments in amongst the fluffy nonsense moments that aren’t my speed. While this might not end up going anywhere with these ideas given it is listed as a slice of life, I can’t deny that some of the ideas are interesting.

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FINAL FANTASY XIII (PLATINUM HITS)
FINAL FANTASY XIII (PLATINUM HITS)

Another Cute Girls Beat Demon With A Time-Warp Twist

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Endro! Episode 1 Review

We see to be swimming in stories that take place after a final battle in recent times, though here’s a twist… they went back in time to before they beat the villain and the villain has gone back to but remembers that final battle. It all sounds kind of cool and fun and then we realise it is a slice of life story featuring a quartet of cute girls with the demon being transformed into a loli teacher for whatever reason.

Endro Episode 1

If we find out at the end that the only reason the heroes get strong enough to defeat the demon lord is because the demon lord was the one who trained them (though technically she’s trying to get them expelled), I’m probably going to be really annoyed at this.

Endro! Episode 1

All and all though, the first episode is pleasant. The characters are cute without becoming annoying and so far we haven’t had any random boob groping or the like (though we did get some ear nibbling and sleep talk plus the outfits of a couple of these girls are reminiscent of the uniforms in Akashic Records of a Bastard Magical Instructor).

Endro Episode 1

What might get annoying is the demon as the loli teacher. While she has the potential to be quite interesting as the only one aware of the time travel and what happened when the heroes confronted the demon lord, so far she’s kind of petty and pathetic and her schemes are transparent and juvenile. That doesn’t mean that there isn’t anything to like here but she’s certainly the weakest link for me so far.

While I’m not 100% sold on this one if it comes down to a choice this season of watching this or Ueno-San I will definitely pick this without hesitation.

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SEISHUN BUTA YAROU WA BUNNY GIRL SENPAI NO YUME WO MINAI 1/8 SCALE PRE-PAINTED FIGURE: SAKURAJIMA MAI
SEISHUN BUTA YAROU WA BUNNY GIRL SENPAI NO YUME WO MINAI 1/8 SCALE PRE-PAINTED FIGURE: SAKURAJIMA MAI