Hmm, I suppose in any show you’ll have your fair share of clunkers. Not that this episode was bad, but the animation was uneven, Fruhl’s plans felt like a retread, and the story and dialogue seemed to lack the spark the previous episodes have had so far. And with only 2 episodes left, I get the sense that the pace of the buildup might have been too slow, and we’re going to be in for a rushed or truncated resolution. I guess we’ll see.
I’ve been waiting for talking Shamisen ever since I knew The Sigh of… was being animated. And the long-awaited return of talking Shamisen was only the beginning of what may be my favorite episode of the season.
It’s been so long since I’ve written about the Higurashi OVAs, I couldn’t remember how to start this. Seriously, these 5 episodes have been dragged out longer than whole seasons. Well, for a Rena Ryuguu fanservice episode, this was bloody brilliant, because it gave you just about everything you could’ve wanted from Rena. The only thing missing was some billhook action. *Schaawiiing*
It’s a funny thing, but I don’t know if I’ve ever seen the Higurashi characters look up before. I got a kick out of seeing the Charlie Brown style faces of Rika and Hanyuu looking up. Too cute.
I rewatched Higurashi a couple weeks ago, marathoning both the original and the sequel, and the one thing that was struck by (and have always been impressed by) is how much I cared for each one of the characters. My heart broke for each one of them as they succumbed to the madness during the question arcs. This made the answer arcs and the second season that much more powerful. I felt like I was part of the gang. And I rooted for Rika and friends to break their treacherous fate harder than I’ve rooted for any characters to do anything ever.
I think perhaps I’ve become a bit too cynical. For the first half of the episode, as I was introduced to Oumi and her dark, mysterious eyes, her strangely conservative dress, the little too perfect tall guy with the great looks, the freaks in the club with the hots for mythological characters, the holy crap, how could a high school afford this? astronomy equipment, the division into groups, I wondered when the other shoe would drop: the one where Mii-chan and co. realized this was no Astronomy Network, this was a sinister cult with malevolent designs on taking over the world! For better or for worse, this shoe never dropped, and we got a real solid episode with finally a little backstory for the anemic club president, Roma. Regardless, I think I may have to lay off the sugar for a while.
The title doesn’t make any sense if you think about it, but I thought it sounded cool. We get another episode with a healthy dose of Horo x Lawrence banter, not much development on the main storyline and then one heckuva cliffhanger at the end. Everyone wants Horo! (With good reason!)
What’s the saying, "It takes a village to raise a child?" The equivalent saying here would be "It takes a SOS brigade to keep Haruhi’s head on straight," or more aptly, "It takes one jealous Kyon to nearly end the whole world." Haruhi’s one of those people if you give an inch, she’ll take a mile. So it should be no surprise for any of the SOS-brigade members (or us, the viewers), if Haruhi takes her eccentricity and megalomaniacal behavior to the limits if no one bothers to stop her, much less empower her. I’ve noticed a lot of anger towards Haruhi on blog posts, on forums, but I think a lot of that anger’s misplaced. I’m not going to deny that this episode featured Haruhi at her petulant worst, but it also featured Kyon and the SOS brigade (sans Koizumi who shines) at their worst as well… since E8 at least.
I really hate HTML tables. 75% of the time spent on this post was messing with table code. I’m thinking I should format this differently next time around.
This fall seems to be the season for uninspired sequels. A good third of the season consists of sequels – of mostly crappy shows. It boggles my mind how many crappy sequels there are this season. In case anime studios are having difficulty figuring out what to make sequels for, here’s a list of sequels I’d rather see (that haven’t been announced yet):
Umineko’s a tough show to write about, because there’s so many things that happen in each episode. I’m going to try to keep this post on the shorter side. (edit: I think I failed.)
Rosa blames the servants
I think the biggest reason why genki girls like Mii-chan and Haruhi are so popular is because they’re always having fun. It’s one adventure to the next. And I’m a tsundere like Saku and Kyon. I make a show of hating to do things, but secretly I enjoy it.