As I expected, I didn’t have enough time to go back and revisit any of the shows I dropped at the start of the season, so I won’t have any new additions to share with you until next week. However, I figured there was nothing stopping me from dropping the weaker shows as normal.
The uneventful Touken Ranbu: Hanamaru was inevitable, but Uta no Prince-sama: Maji Love Legend Star hasn’t been much better recently. The duet project matchups are too formulaic, the last two or three failed to hold my interest at all, and I couldn’t imagine that changing if I kept it on. The number of bishounen in my lineup may have just halved, but there’s still Yuri!!! on Ice, Haikyuu!! and Nanbaka for that, so I won’t necessarily be looking for similar replacements. 😛
1 – Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku ep 6 (↑ 3)
2 – Flip Flappers ep 6 (↓ 1)
3 – JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 4 ep 33 (↑ 6)
4 – Drifters ep 6 (↓ 2)
5 – Yuri!!! on Ice ep 6 (↑ 1)
6 – Bungou Stray Dogs S2 ep 6 (↓ 3)
9 – Haikyuu!! S3 ep 6 (↑ 4)
10 – 3-gatsu no Lion ep 6 (↓ 2)
11 – Shuumatsu no Izetta ep 6 (↓ 6)
13 – Bloodivores ep 6 (↓ 3)
16 – ClassicaLoid ep 6 (↑ 1)
17 – Show by Rock!! # ep 6 (↓ 1)
18 – Nanbaka ep 6
From last to first in half a season, without moving down once. I think that’s a first. Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku is evolving at an amazing pace, from the introduction of magical candies and deadly eliminations early on, to the new rules allowing transfer (read: theft) of candies… and with this episode, these candies now seem like a distant memory, as the girls start actively killing each other. La Pucelle was inevitable really, as our protagonist couldn’t remain happy and protected forever, but Cranberry’s methods were more brutal than I’d expected. Then it was Magicaloid 44, a shame as I liked her, and was expecting more development given they’d just introduced her RL identity. This episode also introduced power-up items; learning that the ‘prices’ represented years of the girls’ lives genuinely sent a shiver down my spine. It’ll be interesting to see how Swim Swim’s team puts theirs to use.
My interest in Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans S2 is starting to return, though we’ve yet to see any really amazing episodes like the first series offered. I mentioned previously that the series had lost its ‘underdog’ feeling, and it’s true that Tekkadan under Orga and Mikazuki seems incredibly competent these days… but the Earth branch under Takaki is far less so, and are currently being manipulated by the treacherous Radice and the leader of the Arbrau Defence Force, Galan Mossa. They’re fighting a long, drawn out battle against the SAU, with neither side (deliberately) gaining any sort of advantage. Meanwhile, reinforcements from the Mars branch are blocked from landing on Earth. It was frustrating to watch, and it must be so much worse for Takaki. So far there haven’t been any main character deaths, with both Chad and Makanai apparently recovering from their injuries, but judging by the next ep preview, that’s about to change.
I was half expecting Bungou Stray Dogs S2 to tumble the moment it returned to the ‘present’, since the first series was up and down a lot, but so far the war between the Agency, Mafia and Guild has been action-packed and entertaining! The first half featured a decent battle between Guild members Hawthorne and Mitchell, and Port Mafia villain Akutagawa… hard to know who to cheer for really. 😛 The lemon bomber was there too, briefly, and was as amusing as before. Animation quality seems to have slipped compared with the flashback episodes, though. The second half was slower-paced though, build-up for a big event to come, that will see the Agency try and ambush Lovecraft and Steinbeck of the Guild – if those two don’t have really interesting powers, I’ll be disappointed.
Given that Drifters is all about bringing together all the greatest leaders and mightiest warriors from throughout history into a generic fantasy world, I did wonder what it was going to do regarding Adolf Hitler. You can hardly ignore the guy, but having him show up as a character (good or bad) wouldn’t have been in good taste. I think they handled it well here, having him show up decades before Toyohisa’s group, and form the Orte empire they’ve been fighting against, before committing suicide. Aside from that, another build-up episode, as the elven revolt spreads following news of this first Drifter-led victory. Looks like we’ll be meeting the dwarves next, and Nobunaga’s black powder may soon be put to use. This episode also introduced the Count of St. Germain, who in-series now owns 1/4 of the Orte Empire – I’ve enjoyed reading about the real historical person too, who says anime doesn’t teach you anything!?
Along with the aforementioned Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku, Hibike! Euphonium S2 is the only other series yet to move down since the start of the season. I expected a drop after the highlight that was the 10 minute performance at the Regionals, but the school festival’s comedy, cute outfits and giant crepes won me over. I loved the haunted house as well – buttons on the floor that cause flashlights to turn off? Do real school festivals actually manage such elaborate features? 😮 The second half of the ep was more serious, with Kumiko’s sister dropping out of university, and Kumiko chatting with Taki-sensei about his late wife, and his reasons for becoming their instructor. Looks like these things will be the main focuses of the series’ latter half, now that the drama between Nozomi and Mizore has been resolved. I can’t see Hibike! Euphonium continuing to place higher and higher, apart from maybe the grand finale at the Nationals, but we’ll see~
Just avoiding being kicked out from my list is Nanbaka… I hoped this sports festival-type thing between the guards and prisoners would be amusing, and it has had its moments (Uno’s gambling tactics, everything about Nico etc), but on the whole it feels like the focus has shifted towards the guards and their rivalry, who I find less funny and interesting than Block 13’s inhabitants. Warden Momoko’s crush on Hajime is cute, but is starting to feel repetitive since it’s about all there is to her character so far. And then, things took a surprisingly serious turn in Jyugo’s battle with Musashi – the whole thing with the shackles and the scar-neck guy was foreshadowed right back in episode one, but hadn’t come up since. I don’t know how I feel about this show developing a real plot, since I enjoyed the earlier gag escape episodes more than these recent action-focused ones, but at least the show remains eventful and unpredictable, which sets it aside from those I dropped.