Winter 2011 3rd episode recap

All your donuts are belong to me!

Welcome back to the third week of this anime season. With 3 episodes out for most shows, I can finally give you a decent idea of how a series is doing and where it is going, esp storyline wise, something that couldn’t be covered very well in the first impressions series.

Edit 1: Fractale and Cardfight!! Vanguard review up and dropped Dragon Crisis’s rating a bit since I overrated it a bit earlier

Note 1: Since I couldn’t think of an interesting title for this piece, the title will stay way for now but might change next season.

Note 2: I couldn’t find an interesting screenshotable scene in everything I reviewed, so I did not include pics for those series xD

Dragon Crisis: 3.5/5

I love you, from my heart. I love you forever with you… wrong anime, but I am pretty sure that is the image you were getting after the third episode. After hearing Rose convey her love a few dozen times over, you might be a little sick of it, but wow, episode 3 was a great episode with some of the better action scenes this season and a great soundtrack to boot. Sadly like most shows, the storyline was incredibly cliche, wimpy hero saves damsel in distress, but as they say, there is nothing new under the sun. Add on the fact that the action scene took up a good chunk of the third episode, enough for me to not care about the storyline, and we have a fairly solid episode. If they can keep on pulling out action like they did in episode 3, Dragon Crisis can definitely be one of the contenders for top show this season. The only reason I can think of that you might hate this series is that you want a decent original plot, which I really doubt this show will provide, or Rose’s repeated lines of love and Ryuuji make you angry, people on forums have already described the immense pain these lines cause ,but pain is love right? xD. Other than that, I definitely recommend everyone to try watching the first 3 episodes of the and try it out. Note: I did not mention that the second episode was not that great because the third episode completely made up for it, so if you do watch the second ep, make sure to watch the third too.

Freezing: 2.5/5

Why do Im Dal Young mangas seem to suffer for one reason from one reason or another? First there was Black God where there was good action but with storyline and dialogue that sounded like it was for a little kids show. Now there is Freezing, where they trade the darker side of the storyline and the brutality of the fights for more fanservice. Why? T_T I guess that is enough ranting for now. Sadly, Freezing is fairly dissapointing right now for both manga readers and first timers to the series. If you were a first timer, the first thing you would notice is the excessive amount of fanservice combined with cheap fighting scenes. For example, in the second episode, a sword orbited around cutting a person causing blood to fly out, but no cut was being produced. To make it worse, the fanservice has really gotten to a point where it degrades the storyline. Tying it off, the main character sounds absurdly wimpy and has overemphasized moments with “Untouchable Queen,” destroying the image of Satellizer. Sadly, that is just the tip of the iceberg for manga readers. In the third episode, Satellizer has here panties pulled down but Miyabi does not get stabbed in the chest like in the manga. If the animators were willing to do fanservice like that, why aren’t the animators willing to show the stabbing scene (plus the storyline makes a lot more sense with the stabbing). I guess that I am being a little overcritical right now becuase it does have some upsides. The series does seem to follow the storyline of the manga, which is a fairly decent storyline, and all the upsides that I mentioned in the First Impressions review are still holding. In the end, watch this anime at your own risk. If Freezing becomes more brutal, it could be amazing, but otherwise it will just stay as a fanservice galore.

Gosick: 3.5/5

Yay, my favorite loli this season. As many people have said before, Victorique is amazingly cute. Probably the greatest draw of the show. Now for those of you who don’t care that much for cute characters or some of the other upsides I talked about in the first impressions series, you probably want mysteries, but sadly, unless the author has harder to solve mysteries in the future, the series will be fairly boring on the storyline side. For example, both of the first 2 mysteries were fairly easy to solve (I pretty much knew who the 2nd murderer was, 10 min after the mystery started. Although, it sort of help that there were only 3 suspects and they only explain the details about 1 or 2 of them), sort of killing the suspense of the story. Still, the anime execution of the plot is fairly good for the amount of options they have, so I advise you stick around and enjoy the story or at least Victorique’s actions.

Infinite Stratos: 2/5

Can this show get anymore cliche? Can the main character be more dense than the lead brick he is? Can the harem stop being such stock characters that go after the main character for no reason? Realistically, the only thing this show has is impressive action scenes. My recommendation is to skim each episode for those scenes and watch nothing else unless you really feel like watching one of the most cliche and stupid harems that I have ever seen.

Kore wa Zombie Desu ka: 4.5/5

Giant Pudding Monster!!! Is that enough of a reason to watch this show? Well the show has not degraded from episode 1. Its jokes are still good. Virtually everything else is still the same quality as it was in episode 1, great. I guess I have to mark off half a point for the static characters, but besides that, just watch this show.

Level E: 3.5/5

It’s all part of my keikaku (keikaku means plan). That is really all that I got out of the first 3 episodes of Level E. I won’t spoil it, but I wonder if I should laugh or cry at the end of the opening arc of level E. Besides that, Level E seems to be a decent series with very few hints of where it will be going. I guess this suspense, or lack of direction, could be good for the storyline but I really don’t see how the story can be that great without an overarching goal. For now, Level E went mostly off its humor which is funny at times, but it is quickly becoming repetitive. I am not sure how much longer I can watch this series for its humor. Still, Level E kept its nice animation. In the end, Level E is doing fine for now with its humor, but unless it picks up some new things, I am a little doubtful about its future. On the other hand, I like the author of the series, so I hope he can deliver.

Mahou Shoujo Madokaโ˜…Magica: 3.5 /5

We are on a journey to go kill witches to go get Jewel Seeds, I mean Grief Seeds. Besides the multitude of Nanoha references you can make in the first 2 episodes. Madoka is starting to show its true colors. A little spoilerish, someone dies and the main characters need to make a large decision. Given the name of the series, I am going to guess that the main characters will revive the dead person, become magical girls, and cause a huge commotion in the magical world. Then they’ll do some fighting with other mahou shoujo and somehow unite teh Mahou Shoujo community. The end. xD To be truthful, I am not too sure how things will turn out in the following few episodes, but I don’t think it will be that unpredicatble. Also, afer the shock factor from the drugged animation works out, Madoka will really need to depend on good storytelling to do well, since the action scenes in the third episode either felt repetive (a lot of Tomoe’s actions were the same in epsidoe 3 as they were in episode 1 and the ending explosions were not very entertaining to watch (sort of the point though but still)), and humor is definitely not one of Madoka’s strong points. If you want to watch this show, enjoy the shock effect for now, but unless Shaft keeps that shock or has an amazing story, I am a little afraid for its future.

Yumekui Merry: 3.5/5

Donuts!!! There seems to be one other moe character this season. Besides that, Merry also needs to depend a lot on storyline, probably even more so than Madoka. The past few fights were not very fast paced and fairly boring, and also like Madoka, its sense of humor is not that great. The only real advantage that Merry has over Madoka is that Merry has great facial expressions with donuts. As for the storyline, things are looking a little dark for Merry. Merry seems to be following an episodic formula of stumbling into some simple event, and at the end of the episode, fight a dream demon in the dream world (doesn’t that sound so similar to star driver xD). I’m really afraid that the show will not advance the plot until the last few episodes. Luckily, it looks lke a new character will join next episode, so I hope a real storyline starts after that because there are not many signs of an advancing plot right now.

Edit:

Cardfight!! Vanguard: 1.5/5

Have you ever tried watching Duel Masters without the jokes or Yu-Gi-Oh! without the storyline (well that actually might be better xD)? Basically strip a card game show of anything unique about it except for the card game itself and you have Vanguard. The show is basically a tutorial on how to play Vanguard xD. Needless to say, it is hard to find entertaining in any way except maybe how Jam Project can turn some of the cheesiest lyrics into a decent theme song xD. I advise you avoid this show unless you want to pick up Vanguard and need a slightly interesting tutorial.

Fractal: 3/5

The more I think about this show, the more I think about findind fractals (It doesn’t exactly help that the opening is filled with fractals). Oh well,I know you did not come here to recite geometric rules and compute integrals, you are here for the show. After 3 epsiodes, I can safely say that this is going to be the most adventurous and plot driven show of the series. We already have talks about dystopias, utopias, a religion in the sky, some giant computer system, terrorist, doppelgangers, and even fractals (Anyone have the Mandlebrot set song playing?). Still after that slow beginning, you might have wondered what happened to get all of these cool topics. Well after 2.5 episodes of boring exploration of the world, we get guns, terrorists, death, and corrupt religions (how many times have I seen this combination before?), things that makes most shows sell, so because of a nice shootout and some drama, I can start having higher expectations of the show xD. Now that the storyline is established, you are probably wondeirng about everything else. The animation is still very much the same as the first episode with the Miyazaki feel and grand landscapes. The music still does not appeal to me. The only thing that really changed besides the storyline is the introduction of Nessa. If you remember Yui from K-ON!, Nessa seems very similar to her at first. Nessa is a little girl who is both very friendly and airheaded. At first, this was a refreshing experience to the slow story, but Nessa acts so stupid at times that I just feel angry when watching her actions, degrading my watching experience. Overall, if Nessa does not annoy you too much and if you can bear past the slow begining, Fractale shows promise to be a fun multifaceted experience.

======================

Status Report:

Shows that I did not follow till episode 3: (In other words not getting a review because it was dropped, or not watched at all)

Beelzebub
Hourou Musuko
Kimi Ni Todoke 2nd Season
Mitsudomoe 2
Oniichan no Koto nanka Zenzen Suki Janain Dakara ne!!
Rio: Rainbow Gate
Starry Sky
Wolverine
(and anything else that is not mentioned)

======================

Since I am sure you were bored reading the status report, to end this little recap, here is some fanservice:

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10 responses to “Winter 2011 3rd episode recap

  1. Damnit, that’s some awesome fanservice xD.

    Hmm, I haven’t started on any series this season, but looking through your list, even the ones that didn’t get too high of a score intrigues me to see how they fare.

    Looking forward to your thoughts on fractale!

    • I have to agree, it is great fanservice xD.

      As for the shows with low ratings, I guess they each have their own charms and merits. Just don’t be surprised if they do worse than expected, but I think you already know that xD.

  2. IMO, the ratings are kinda laid back from someone like you. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

    Well maybe not for Kore wa Zombie Desu ka. XD

    Also, thanks for dropping by, warum. :3333

    • ……??? My ratings are too high? T_T I guess I should be harder next season xD (Real reason: Most of the shows that are supposed to get low ratings were not followed, i.e. the shows I dropped. I am pretty sure I would mark a good chunk of the dropped ones in red. Why am I thinking of painting it red now?)

      Or did I misunderstand you, and you wanted the ratings to be higher…. In that case, I have no words to say and will just walk a way for now.

      • Nope, you didn’t. I was hoping for a good chunk of the ratings to be full of deep-fried low ratings (mmmhmmm, yummy) since I personally didn’t like most of ’em, and basing from our conversations, it goes the same for you. ๐Ÿ˜›

  3. All your donuts are belong to us!!!

    Mhn…this season is pretty crazy between Yumekui Merry, Kore wa zombie desu ka and the other stuff. ๐Ÿ˜›

    Still have to start Fractale, is it any good?

    • Donuts only belong to Merry. Everyone else……. yeah! xD

      Fractale is getting better. The start is fairly slow and meant to build atmostphere. As a result, there were only a few interesting moments so far, but watching grannies use a machine gun with magical blasts to kill soldiers who are also spraying bullets at the grannies is definitely unique xD.

      • Actually, when it comes to donuts, Merry may have competition… but that’s on the VN side of the fence now, so no worries XD

        As for Fractale, I am currently in a “I am disappoint” moment because the art style from the manga and anime are different. I may reconsider though.

  4. I wish Gainax was a lot more active…

    They make such epic anime shit, and they pull out stuff like the plot never matters (even though it turns out that everything revolves around the plot. :O)

  5. That a new generation of fanservice.

    Still Gosick,DC,Yumekui Merry and Kore wa Zombie is far I had ever watch yet.

    I hadn’t watch Madoka yet, but I was shaken to the facts about it.

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