Weekly Round-Up: June 27th
Reviewed this week: Allison and Lillia 10-11, Chocolate Underground 1, Kaiba 8, Kurenai 11-12, Mnemosyne 5, Toshokan Sensou 11
…and in manga: FMA 1-84, Minami-ke 30-1
CURRENT SERIES RANKINGS
- Kurenai (1) – masterful
- Chi’s Sweet Home (2)- Chi plays
- Kaiba (3) – who am I?
- Nabari no Ou (4) – clan massacre
- Soul Eater (5) – Bones does shounen
- Wagaya no Oinari-sama (6) – fox trap
- xxxHOLiC Kei (7) – typhoid Himawari
- Persona Trinity Soul (8) – catch-up, start!
- Real Drive (9) – they’re dogs, and they’re on the internet!
- Itazura na Kiss (10) – hospital
- Amatsuki (11) – the new Shounen Onmyouji
- Himitsu (12) – faceless
- Kyouran Kazoku Nikki (13) – shinigami
- Toshokan Sensou (14) – library wars
- Allison and Lillia (15) – yawn
- Chocolate Underground (-) – chocolate is forbidden <- new!
Allison and Lillia 10-11: The stupidity of Allison and Lillia reaches new heights as this arc continues, starting with Allison and Wil witnessing the murder of the conductor, before allying with the clearly suspicious Major Stork to fight off a military train with a pistol (no, really) followed by a tank that can somehow keep up with a train. I want to spend time making intense fun of it, but that must be left for the parodies.
*NEW* Chocolate Underground 1: With its 3-5 minute episodes, it hardly seemed like too much of an investment to tuck into the first instalment of Chocolate Underground, a series about a world where the use, sale and distribution of chocolate is now illegal. Naturally, in this Prohibition-esque era, bootlegging is rife, but there isn’t much of excitement in this episode, which basically serves to introduce the main characters and the world of constant health food ads that they inhabit. It’s hardly stunning stuff, and it was made even worse by the fact that the sound was out of sync for much of the episode.
Kaiba 8: The plot ramps up in this episode, with important revelations about Popo and Warp changing the playing field of the series once again. Although Popo is part of a group that forbids the use of memory chips and body swaps, we know that he has changed bodies at least once- and he’ll even go so far as to forsake his own mother in order to keep his secret hidden. Meanwhile, the kind Warp is a man who has had hundreds of copies of his body made, only a few of which contain his true powers. Currently, the king is in one of the inferior bodies, but the one that Kaiba started out in is the ‘true’ body that he needs. And what of the memory eating plant, which has continued to devour planets? Can it be stopped?
*COMPLETE* Kurenai 11-12: With Benika, Yayoi and Shinkurou having resolved to take back Murasaki, the time has come for an assault on the Kuhouins, and that is just what episode eleven delivers- all the slick and fast-paced action that you could have ever hoped for. It is a masterful stroke in an excellent series, but unfortunately it is also one that leaves episode twelve with the unenviable task of having to wrap it all up. With that in mind, it comes as no surprise that the series can only end ‘as well as expected’, failing to live up to its predecessors with narrative conveniences such as Shinkurou and Yayoi magically levelling up to defeat previously untouchable enemies and Murasaki vowing to single-handedly challenge the all-powerful Kuhouins, but nonetheless there are some good moments, and overall a pleasant taste is less in the mouth. And yet, was this series Gold+ or Platinum?
Mnemosyne 5: The year is 2055, reality and the internet have merged and Teruki Maeno has a daughter- but happened to Rin? As it turns out, even being shredded by the engine of a plane wasn’t enough to keep her down forever, but with her regeneration taking the better part of a decade, she has been left without a memory. Even so, now that Rin is an office lady, who is the Rin lookalike who is going around murdering immortals? This is a mildly interesting episode, but the gratuitousness is still present, and to be honest there’s little that can enhance my reduced interest in the series other than a proper explanation of what’s going on followed by a solid conclusion.
Toshokan Sensou 11: The Media Enhancement Committee are ready to launch their attack on the controversial artwork, so it’s up to the Library Forces to defend it- with their lives if necessary. As always, there’s just something that doesn’t hang right about the combat, leaving me feeling disappointed and unfulfilled. Oh well, just one more episode to go.
*CATCH-UP* Fullmetal Alchemist 1-84: I’ll be reviewing it properly in due course, but suffice to say that at long last I am up to date on the FMA manga, and it’s proved to be rewarding if frustrating (I need to know hoe it’s going to end). With key difference in the Homunculi and their creator, the FMA manga promises a deeper and more involved story than the anime could manage, with the latest chapter ending on a cliff-hanger that I absolutely must see resolved.
Minami-ke 30-1: It’s time for two more brief stays in the Minami-ke world with this duet of chapters; first up, we get to relive Hosaka developing an interest in Haruka and thus taking up cooking, before we see how utterly futile it is to try to argue with Chiaki.