Fall 2020 First Impressions: The Final Load


You’ll notice some anime are pushed back a week like I’ve done previously, but most aren’t. The subscription I mentioned in this round-up post means I now get to watch Funimation-licensed anime the day they drop, but Crunchyroll is more expensive per month to my knowledge and so isn’t worth the money just yet. Jujutsu Kaisen and Golden Kamuy are with Crunchyroll while all the others are with Funimation and friends (although Golden Kamuy will soon get a dub which will be with Funi and co.).


Jujutsu Kaisen

I dropped the manga at one point after 3 chapters, but picked it up again for this anime’s sake and…I actually don’t hate it??? I’m just kinda neutral on it.

That’s weird, because unlike anime, once I drop a manga, it’s normally quite final.

That said, we’re here for the anime, which is…a beat-for-beat adaption of the manga, with the exception of slightly having more comedy (and not explaining who this “Mirko” is…he’s a Czech MMA fighter. (Also he’s the inspiration for Mirko in Boku no Hero Academia.) I like the more comedic approach, because the contrast makes things stand out more.

Notes:

  • Fushiguro has long eyelashes. Itadori comments on that at one point in the manga, I think.
  • Oh, it was a fish (carp) in the manga. I couldn’t figure out what the Japanese equivalent was just from the Kokkuri board panels, but it was “clione”.
  • This track club teacher is a bit of a freak, honestly. Meddling in kids’ affairs like he does is probably illegal to some extent.
  • Itadori is known as “tiger” because the kanji for “tiger” is in his surname. Update: Also, the Czech dude Mirko was called “the Croatian tiger”.
  • They show the world records, so you have standards to compare Itadori against.
  • “People really can die.” – That’s summoning some real energy of “People die when they are killed.”
  • Update: I think I couldn’t really connect with Yuji when his grandpa died. We didn’t get to know the grandpa all that much.

..

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Kamisama ni Natta Hi

…eh. I actually bothered to (physically) shrug at this show near the end of the episode, which shows exactly how committed I am to it. Mostly, Hina kinda irritates me and Youta’s love interest is too emotionless to even imagine her being a fan of anything.

The one thing I can give it credit for is the visuals though. Those seem to have a lot of detail in them, including the weird shiny lights in Hina’s eyes.

Notes:

  • There’s a fish on the logo.
  • …this girl, I already know her name is Hina. That’s the 2nd Odin this season (the first is in Sigrdrifa)…she’s gonna be annoying, isn’t she…?
  • What’s this about a date…?
  • There are two Izanamis this season, too. The second is Hifumi from HypMic.
  • Looks like there was an accident, according to one of the signs.
  • …This feels exactly like a visual novel. I’m surprised it’s an original.
  • I was wondering why “Key Ramen” (Kagi Ramen) sounded weird…then it hit me. Key! *shakes fist* You were hiding right under my nose all along!
  • …that style in Hina’s background…I’m pretty sure I’ve seen it for Sailor Moon Crystal, but I’ve forgotten what the artist’s name is (the one that inspired that artstyle)…
  • I almost expected Hina to interrupt the confession, like Leo from Taiso Samurai.
  • I kinda only finished this episode just to see if the confession would be interrupted, so…big fat drop there. I must not like much Key beyond Angel Beats (and even then, it’s only okay because it’s the relic of a time gone by).

..

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Taiso Samurai

It’s kinda goofy, to be honest with you all, but I liked it (as odd as that is for a sports anime). There’s no supernatural things happening yet (like I wanted there to be), but I’ll keep my eye out just in case something does…that “samurai” thing is just what Jotaro is called because of his hair, by the way.

To be fair, it is actually juggling all sorts of things, including the gymnastics (sometimes CGI-assisted, which I thought would be polarising for me but disappears like a bad dream for the end segment, which definitely summons some big Yuri!!! on Ice vibes for 2D motion sequences), ninjas, grieving plotline (?), non-sequiturs (Zombieland Saga humour indeed, including several characters who look like Kotaro when in their Shanghai Honey jumpsuits) and…whatever’s happening in that colourful ED (our eventual OP…?). It’ll have to be careful going forward.

It drops several references, which sort of suggest Tomoyo, Jotaro’s deceased wife, was an actress in a ninja movie (this “Ooku vs. Kunoichi” Rei namedrops?) and Rei watched a bunch of movies with her…but that also sort of drags you back in time with how Jotaro has a flip phone (!!!) and they’re talking about the Matrix like it’s still cool (I’ll admit I only watched that in February this year to understand the Animatrix, though).

Also, this “gymnast trying to retire” thing seems to be drawing me in because of my whole current lack of direction in basically everything, much like the aimlessness of Rikuo (of Sing Yesterday for Me).

Notes:

  • I just realised how pretty Jotaro’s eyes are…! The fact he just sort of splats and then doesn’t get up shows how weary he is, unlike Sakura from Moon Land, who would’ve probably gotten up and never tried doing gymnastics again if he were in the same position.
  • Just by glancing over the results when I google for this Montreal gold, it seems it was done by a Kouhei Uchimura, but I might be wrong on that front…oh wait, there are 3 golds, so it’s not necessarily just that one…
  • You can tell this is 2002 because of that flip phone.
  • Intai Zamurai…it’s constructed the same way as the anime’s title. Two characters and then “samurai”.
  • BB (Big Bird) on the side there is so goofy, he’s…kind of distracting. <- Note the official website refers to Big Bird as BB, hence my use of it.
  • Kinugawa Ropeway…it rings a bell, somehow. Maybe the Boueibu crew went there as DVD/BD extras.
  • …does everyone know that a ryokan is like a mini hotel with a traditional set-up?
  • That montage was a bit worrying…maybe the CGI took out part of the budget? I was a bit worried when I could tell there was CGI in that one starting segment.
  • …LOL, wut. Agent Smith (from the Matrix)?
  • Yamakasi seems to be a parkour thing which has its own movie.
  • …I’m sort of wondering: was that ninja a woman? If Jotaro gets another wife…I dunno if I’ll like the anime as much. Things could become far too dramatic if he did. Update: You do find out later in this episode.
  • I think – from lip reading – the ninja used -de gozaimasu. I remember getting it drilled into me that people don’t use that these days, but in the time of ninja and samurai, they did.
  • …another anime set in Ikebukuro. I knew from the station, but…’bukuro must be a nice place if people are reppin’ it all of a sudden.
  • “Kinugawa, as in the river where ogres get mad?” – See, that’s the pun I made about Boueibu’s Atsushi years ago…Update: See, 鬼怒川 (Kinugawa) means demon (ogre)/anger/river respectively.
  • …they keep building up to this retirement, only for him to not retire??? Which is it?! (LOL) That declaration works better in Japanese because the -shimasen goes at the end of the sentence so the weird sentence structure in the English translation actually makes Jotaro look like he really messed up due to nervousness speaking in front of crowds. Update: He just sounds like he stopped in the middle of a sentence in Japanese, which he obviously did.
  • Update: Edo Wonderland actually exists!

..

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Moriarty

I’ve been picking up Sherlock-related things left and right ever since I was a fan of Detective Conan…not Sherlock, Elementary or that Robert Downey Jr. movie, but the stuff Conan Doyle had his hands in. (I’d also like to keep an eye out for that Miyazaki movie, but I don’t know if I can/should go out of my way for it.) Therefore, I was a pretty easy mark for a bishonen Moriarty. Despite that, the big gaps in my consumption mean I don’t consider myself enough of a Sherlockian that I would understand what’s going on with the brothers, so I might miss some things from the Holmes canon but also understand some.

As for the premiere itself, it was pretty impressive. I haven’t seen an anime London this beautiful since Ancient Magus’ Bride (from Wit Studio, so a fellow member of IG Port)…that said, there was a sort of emptiness I was left with. Maybe it’s the flashing of the statues (which may have been a bit much in retrospect…?)

Notes:

  • Who’s this “El” guy anyway?
  • …That OP is basically Black Butler all over again. I admit I went, “Oh, stuff this” for a second when I saw Rasmus Faber’s name in the credits – when I went to entire series for him, they always ended badly for me – but I couldn’t stop watching the episode (since I skipped forward to the actual episode due to background noise before watching the OP), so this might be the anime to change everything.
  • …I want a dub. With accents, like Princess Principal.
  • Also, I forgot Soma Saito was our Moriarty…LOL.
  • The eyes really tell you everything about a person in this anime.
  • Ooh, this has absolutely no holes in its logic. It’s a strong contender!

..

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Golden Kamuy 3

If you don’t know what your opinion about Golden Kamuy is already…go back to the beginning.

This episode serves up more of the usual, except with more dogs and lingonberries this time.

  • If this is episode 25, was this always planned as a split-cour with season 2? I wonder…
  • Lingonberries! Oh, lingonberries! They’re those berries Ikea puts into their jam, right? (I’ve never tasted a lingonberry, but…yeah. That’s how I know of them.)
  • The sign says “Hurep Honpo” (backwards, as some older Japanese/Chinese things do) and “honpo” = main shop).
  • Thank goodness for 2D bears! (LOL)
  • There’s nothing like someone throwing a wolverine to know this is Golden Kamuy…(as weird as that sounds.)
  • …what was that random line about boobs about…? (Maybe it was just said to be random…?)
  • …ohhhhhhhh. These yellow eyes work much better than the standard red eyes you see in Munou na Nana or Moriarty. They’re so sinister.
  • Why did it suddenly change to an interview style…? Weren’t we waiting for a fight? Update: Seems the answer is “padding”. Not that I mind, I think it was interesting actually. Do more of that if you can.

..

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Magatsu

When I was typing this anime’s name out for the pre-season list, I couldn’t figure out how to spell it at all. Apparently it’s German, to some degree or other…? (Same with Sigrdrifa, which I had to type for this post, but that wasn’t in my pre-season list.)

If IWGP is a “no drugs” anime, then Magatsu is a “no guns” anime. It’s surprisingly down-to-earth with its fantasy elements – despite having magic staves and mutant monsters that look like dinosaurs, the fights are carried almost fully by guns and swords.

While that cliffhanger compelled me to continue, I don’t think it’s good enough to beat its competition in the long run.

Notes:

  • …this OP has lyrics?! I just hear strange squeaky noises, the kind you hear on some autotuned sogs to make them seem more ominous (I can’t remember if there’s a similar sound in G-Anthem of Y City or Yokohama Walker, but one of the Mad Trigger Crew songs (of HypMic) has similar noises).
  • I kinda guessed Leo’s package (the one he put on to the truck) was the one Schaake and her partner were looking for. I was right.
  • That CGI (on the truck) is…kinda conspicuous.
  • These backgrounds are gorgeous.
  • “The definition of in dubio contra reum is “in doubt, against the accused”, meaning that, where there is doubt, the accused in a trial is not given the benefit of that doubt; they are assumed guilty.”
  • I wonder: how many protagonists start out as absolute wimps, unwilling to fight because they either know or don’t know their own power? It’s a pretty standard introduction for things with fights.
  • This battle track is nice. I listened to some of the Magatsu music under Masaru Yokoyama’s name on Spotify and it’s pretty cool, but since it’s background music, there’s not a lot of demand to listen to it (from me or anyone else, I don’t think).
  • Why is there only a single shield if they know the enemy has heavy artillery?
  • …what the heck is a Zeits? Update: You can see a “Zeits” (or however it’s spelt) in the credits list, suggesting Zeits is a character in this.

Ratings

I kinda forgot I started the fall 2020 seasonal challenge, which opens up enough extra slots for 7 fall anime, at the possible cost of my ongoing Crunchyroll anime (because you have to be up-to-date for these challenges and I can’t guarantee that with Crunchyroll).

However, if I finish Burn the Witch later this week with my anime club (because if I watched it by myself, I’d probably drop it like I did with the oneshot, let’s be real…), I can make it 6 and finally clean that mess from the past 2 seasons. If I don’t, then I can keep 1 Crunchyroll seasonal.

The dog and cat short is…cute, but would be far too cloying as a full series (plus I might get annoyed at how dumb/excitable the dog is or how grumpy the cat is in doses as big as that). The full series are so good that I might need to put it on pause anyway…

Watching:

  • HypMic (2 eps)
  • Golden Kamuy 3 (1 ep – currently Crunchyroll-only as of the day of its debut)
  • Akudama Drive (1 ep)
  • Taiso Samurai (1 ep)
  • Maou-jou (2 eps – the 2nd episode made me laugh less because it used the Ghost Shrouds again, but it’s still pretty good when the eyecatches are good for my translation skills even when the laughs aren’t present)
  • Moriarty (1 ep)
  • Yashahime (2 eps, JJK actually started below it but this moved down with the 2nd episode – as noted in its impressions post, Takahashi never changes her formula once she sets it – and finally JJK moved below it again once I remembered I had the seasonal challenge)

Paused:

  • Magatsu (1 ep)
  • JJK (1 ep, down 1 category)
  • IWGP (1 ep, down 1 category)
  • Munou na Nana (2 eps, down 1 category from last post – I get this feeling that because it’s relying on the red segments to tell us what Nana’s really feeling, the anime doesn’t quite trust us…)
  • Wandering Witch (2 eps, down 1 category from last post, vaguely reeks of yuri bait – episodes drop on Fridays, by the way, which can still mean Saturdays by showing up late)
  • Higurashi (2 eps, down 1 category from last post, starting to show things which you need the previous series to understand)
  • Crusade (1 ep)
  • 100-man (1 ep)

Dropped:

  • Grace of the Gods (1 ep, re-evaluate)
  • Tonikawa (1 ep)
  • Kamisama ni Natta Hi (1 ep)

This top 7’s looking pretty solid, but if something goes hugely not to my liking, I’ll sub it out with something ranked under it or another Crunchyroll seasonal. I might need the next episode of IWGP, which appeared on the day I’m typing this, to figure out if it’s worth using as a substitute though.

So, how’s your fall season so far? (For a refresher on what I’m excited for, check this post.)

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