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What They Say:
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Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
This show is not doing it for me. In these three episodes, it has continued to build on its large amount of pointless fanservice, incestuous themes, ridiculousness, and now time-consuming exposition, increasing exponentially as time goes on, and despite how crazy it seems, doesn’t shy away from taking the formulaic road when possible.
Yes, this is a Shaft series by Akiyuki Shinbo, and that means there are some stylistic visuals that you aren’t likely to get from much else out there these days. However, even on that front it feels like they’re trying too hard to make this something that can safely fit into their portfolio by keeping the visuals away from the norm, going through the motions of what’s almost sure to work without being especially inventive as with the likes of Bakemonogatari or Madoka Magica.
These stylistic visuals are a definite part of what’s made the aforementioned series as great as they are, but it’s far from all. Shinbo has directed a great wealth of series since becoming Shaft’s main man, and there’s a reason that there are still only a select few brought up more than almost any others to show off the ability of these teams; he certainly hasn’t hit it out of the park every single time. However, there does still seem to be a general level of quality that remains consistent in any of the series he’s directed at this studio, and I’m sad to say that this seems to be lacking even that. Yes, it’s only three episodes in, and it’s certainly not fair to judge a series based on a quarter of its total run, but I’m not sure there’s been another such series that was so lacking in that regard by this point in it.
No, I’m not saying it’s a total failure, because it’s not, at least not at this point (and I can’t imagine it becoming one anytime soon, if ever). The visuals, while not as inventive and mind-blowing as in some of its creators other works, definitely add some points; that can hardly be argued unless one finds them simply nauseating. The direction and general workmanship displayed always shows some impressive professionalism, and watching these people at work is still interesting for the simple fact that you can never quite know what they’ll come up with next, although this series seems to be unfortunately subverting that with some degree of predictability.
Ultimately, a big part of the problem may come down to disappointment. Even if it’s not really all that bad, it feels like there should be more, given who it’s coming from. I’m not being entirely biased and saying that it’s bad because it’s not as great as their finest; I do still believe it’s overall on the negative spectrum of modern anime series, and each episode is wearing away at my patience a little more.
I don’t think this is a very good show. It’s continuing to do everything it’s been suffering because of. A great amount of this episode is spent on exposition to explain how all the ridiculousness of this actually somewhat formulaic story makes total sense. It’s not all that creative of a story to be honest, and even then a lot of this is drowned out by uncomfortably creepy scenes that feel like they’re only pushing things further, which doesn’t bode well for the future. I hope others do enjoy it much more, but I think I’m done with reviewing it now.
Streamed By: The Anime Network
Toshiba Satellite L655-S5191 PSK2CU-1C301U Notebook PC.