There’s some slightly encouraging news on the simulcast front, in that UK Anime Network is reporting Viewster has acquired The Rolling Girls and Cute High with more simulcasts to come. Viewster’s own attempts to publicize this fact so far consist of tweeting a link to the UKA article.
Whatever the heck is going on inside Viewster right now, all signs point to the British Isles eventually getting access to a reasonable percentage of this season’s shows. Please forgive me if I forge on ahead, you’ll catch up!
Meanwhile, we’ve now got direct links to all the relevant AnimeLab streams, and that one last late premiere to take care of…
ISUCA premiere – This is billed as a monster-fighting action show, and to be fair, there is a bit of fighting. But what ISUCA really aspires to be about is fanservice for the undiscerning straight male viewer. A few seconds into the show, there’s a female demon pulling off her trenchcoat to flash the hero. She eventually morphs into a giant centipede and gets taken down by a mysterious archer, but mostly the scene is about the hero being threatened by a naked woman.
Similarly, the big battle that ends the episode is mostly about the main female character having her clothing ripped off piece by piece, and then being molested by tentacles of lightning. Then we have to have yet another hilarious pratfall where the hero manages to both fall on her and kiss her totally by accident to establish that he is somehow able to replenish her fighting energy.
In between those scenes, there is hardly a female character who is not first introduced with a shot of her bosom, her bottom, or up her skirt. And the end credits are basically images of two of them in various Playboy-style poses.
The best one can say about ISUCA is that it comes across as completely honest about its intentions. There is no way to mistake it for anything but a naked (ahem) attempt to cram as much fanservice in as possible. It deserves all the obscurity it’ll be getting for starting so late.
Death Parade #3 – After plumbing the dark depths of the human soul, Death Parade decides to change it up a bit and explore the story of two childhood friends who might have become college sweethearts if not for tragedy intervening. Even Decim is able to lighten up and display a small sense of humor.
The important part of this episode, series-wise, is to show that the rules don’t require one soul to be reincarnated and one to be thrown away. You can, instead, have two very nice people show up at the same time who both qualify to be sent back to the mortal world. This means you can also get two horrible people, which no doubt we’ll see very soon. It also means more room to be in doubt about who’s going where, which can only help give the rest of the stories more narrative oomph.
The choice of game may be tied to the type of souls who show up. Bowling has a repuatation as a friendlier, less competitive game than darts. Next week we get some kind of arcade game, which should be very intense. Does that signal that next week’s couple is not so nice?
Yatterman Night #3 – A tranquil domestic scene is interrupted by Alouette’s best friend stopping in to inform her that her house is full of perverts. Just for once, hilarious nudity is actually hilarious. Simply stepping back letting the viewer soak in the absurdity of the situation has been far more humorous than a million crappy light novel adaptations going HA HA THIS CONTRIVED ACCIDENTAL COMPROMISING POSITION IS FUNNY LAUGH ALREADY DAMMIT.
Anyway, meet Galina, voiced by Hiroyuki Yoshino, who was also the voice of Gan-chan aka Yatterman-1 in the 2008 Yatterman series. The pre-season publicity for Yatterman Night promised an origin story for Gan-chan and Ai-chan, the heroes of the original Yatterman and its 2008 revival, and here we are with their voice actors playing two characters with very similar names. However, not only is this set well in the future, but Galina and Alouette are 17, and Gan-chan and Ai-chan were 13, not to mention that the current characters have some serious issues going on that Gan-chan and Ai-chan did not. So probably what’s going to happen is that Galina and Alouette will wind up becoming the new Yatterman-1 and Yatterman-2 in their own time period when the dust settles.
…Though, given that the previous series did have occasional time travel, I suppose it’s not totally inconceivable that this could wind up in a big convoluted ball of retcon.
Anyway, the gang’s all together now, the new outfits are looking terrific, and the fourth wall has only taken minor damage so far. Now it’s officially on!
Yona of the Dawn #16 – Geun-tea thinks Soo-won is a rabbit? Ah, but he’s one with nasty, big, pointy teeth. He just knows to keep them hidden and let his opponents underestimate him. This is definitely the person who spent years carefully planning to murder King Il.
Now we know Soo-won is a very smart guy, one equally adept with economics and military strategy. Usurper he may be, but as Geun-tea now accepts, he may be exactly what the kingdom of Kōka needs to hold off its enemies. He’s going to be one hell of a challenge for Yona– if, in fact, he really is the person she needs to defeat. There’s still the matter of what role his mysterious adviser is playing.
JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders #27 – Did Iggy settle down and try to be a helpful little dog and defeat this week’s villain by accident, or did he just find a more subtle way of being a total bastard? I’m voting for total bastard. Trapping a guy in the car with the two biggest idiots in the regular cast probably meets the international definition of torture.
What’s that guy’s name, anyway? The subtitles are calling the brothers Zenyatta and Mondatta after a song by The Police, but even if you speak no Japanese at all, you’ve probably noticed by now that their actual names are Oingo and Boingo. (Conoisseurs of ’80s rock may also notice that Boingo’s comic book is drawn in the style of Gary Panter, who did the art for Boingo Alive.) This isn’t the first time in this series that a rock-music reference has mutated into a different rock-music reference, and I really don’t know why. I’m guessing the subtitler has chosen to stick with names used in the English translation of the source manga, but why the editor of that chose to change the names, we may never know.
This week’s bathhouse lecture is about youth and age, which, as we have been conditioned to expect by now, sets up the theme of the episode. But it’s not just about looks and age, it’s about nostalgia. It’s Atsushi and Kinshirō thinking back to wishing upon a star as children… and about every single anime reference in the episode being to old shows. (At least all those that your correspondent can figure out; I admit to not being able to place Fifty-Year-Old Face Guy’s villain outfit. But the three 18-year-old protagonists are Kenshirō from Fist of the North Star, Joe from Gatchaman, and Ryū Jose from Mobile Suit Gundam.)
So a bit of ongoing plot is emerging. Once Atsushi and Kinshirō were friends, but they don’t seem to remember it. Atsushi got his wish; it’ll seem odd now if Kinshirō doesn’t, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it happens in a different way than he planned.