November 20, 2014

The Evangelion Movies: 2.22 You Can (not) Advance, pt 2

What the hell, why not?  Back in January when my life was ridiculously busy, I decided that I was going to deep-six the writeups I was working on for the new Evangelion movies.  I wasn't really having much fun with them, and dear god its not like I had any spare time, y'know?  Now though?  Nothing but time, and while we wait for the Kantai Collection anime to debut, I need to do something anime-related, right?  Right!  Sure!  Let's go with that!  And since I left this sitting on the table, why NOT pick it back up.  I mean, besides the fact that it's been sitting out since January, kinda turned green around the edges and may have been trying to acquire sentience in an attempt to escape, that is.  It does look like it grew a flipper.  Well, let's poke it and see what squirts out, shall we?  C'mon, it'll be fun!

See?  Fun!  Who wouldn't want to go to a... whatever this sign is talking about here!  I'm sure it'll be great!  It'll be... um... like a waterpark!  That's what "marine" means, right?  Either that or there'll be an amphibious invasion, one of the two.  That'd be even better, because here's the defenders:

So, we've got Teh Rei, Pen2, Shinji's friends Evageek and Facepuncher, and of course Asuka.  Everybody seems to be all excited about the trip to Funderwater World and all, except for Asuka.  And Teh Rei, who doesn't do "excited."  Or any other emotion usually.  It's her schtick, she'll grow out of it.  She's at that age, y'know?  At least, she thinks she is.  Nobody's quite sure.  We'll get to that, I think.  Eventually.  There's so many versions of Evangelion floating around out there, it's hard to remember what's going on.

Greatest waterpark ever!  Yeah, it looks like a repurposed sewage treatment plant, but that's because... um... it is?  See, where you're looking at is an attempt to reclaim the red-stained oceans, caused by the Second Impact, and also act like an aquatic ark if you will.  Because we need to keep tuna alive.  By running them through a sewage treatment plant.  Speaking of which, it's not like the outside world is allowed in willy-nilly.  Oh no.


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November 18, 2014

A Nice Slice Of Cheesecake

-Amagi Brilliant Park, ep07

Just a little sumtin-sumtin to tide you over while I work on a surprise.  You like surprises.  Surprises are good.

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November 16, 2014

Ben-To! Ep12

And so we have come, not to the end of the beginning as Winston Churchill might say, but just simply to the end.  This final episode of Ben-To! in and of itself is nothing important, just another final episode in a long line of final episodes for a long line of series.  But just as no two snowflakes are alike, so to are no two final episodes the same.  Each has its charms and failings, characters you'll be sorry to see go and ones you wish had disappeared half a series earlier, and the same holds true for our feisty discount meal punch-em-up.  For example, I could have done without Desaturation Lass and her taste for slashfic hardcore yaoi starring Our Hero, even if she does come part and parcel with Shiraume Ume, the obsessive Western Student Council Prez with the zettai ryouiki and the slap that can shatter a planet.  On the other hand, if they felt like spinning off a show starring Shaga, aka "Beauty of the Lake", I'd be perfectly okay with that.  Alas, it is not to be, at least anytime soon. Ben-To! did not sell well in Japan, and with Funimation coughing up a hairball on their release of the show domestically, it seems unlikely that we'll ever see a Season 2.  So gather around, my friends!  Let us remember not the bad times of Ben-To!, but the good.  Let us go forward into Ep12 together in comradely comradeship.  Let us show the production company that we are unbowed, that we are still strong, and that tonight, we are all one united.  I see an entire army of my readers, here in ridicule of bad production staffs, here for the one chance to... y'know what?  Instead of getting all dramatic and stuff, let's just finish this show up, shall we?

"THEY MAY TAKE OUR LIVES, BUT THEY WILL NEVER TAKE... OUR POCARI SWEAT!!!"  It is 6pm the evening of the Summer Solstice, when Supermarket Audrey has their famed eel bento.  It goes on sale at 10pm, and the Ice Witch is trying everything she can to be ready.  Bananas, nyquil and gatorade... sounds like an interesting Saturday night.  As she drifts off to sleep, Our Hero turns off the alarm and leaves a note saying that he'll bring her back eel.  How romantic can you get, huh?  In another part of the city...

...Left is on the verge of a monumental breakdown, just because maybe the Club of Hercules might show up since it's been three years to the day.  Kyou, the closest thing we have to a sane person in this show, does everything she can to calm her down, short of a cattleprod.  I don't know just how much that'd calm her sister down, but it'd be worth watching.  Is there any way we can make that happen?  Somewhere else in town...

...PCB explains what he learned about Orthrus and Club of Hercules last episode.  Needless to say, it's not something the show cares to share with us because why would it do something like that, but Shaga seems somewhat disturbed by it.  Finally, in yet another part of this village...

...Club of Hercules makes contact with Our Hero in a way that Desaturation Lass would find as inspiring, throwing him up against a train trestle support and whispering in is ear what the plan is, and how it guarantees the Ice Witch some eel.  Needless to say, it's not something the show cares to share with us because why would it do something like that, but Our Hero seems somewhat disturbed by it.  There are moments where I want to commit unspeakable acts of violence and cruelty upon this series, and right here is one of those moments


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November 11, 2014

Ben-To! Ep11

Here we are again!  Much to everybody's surprise, we find ourselves approaching the end of the greatest anime series based on punching people for half-priced pre-packaged meals.  Last episode saw the arrival of Orthrus, aka Kyou and Left, and the associated beating of the Ice Witch via shopping basket.  I'm sorry, but that's not the way I expected the premiere Wolf of the West to go: beaten by shopping basket.  Next up, Our Hero is flagellated by plastic shopping bag tie-shuts.  Actually, that sounds like something Desaturation Lass would enjoy... well, let's see what the Production Staff thinks, shall we?

We pick up directly from where Ep10 ends, with Orthrus standing over the broken and bleeding bodies of all that stood in their way for half-priced boxed dinners.  As the Ice Witch hemorrhages and suffers brain swelling, they taunt the Wolves that are still on their feet, practically begging them to attack.  Nobody does.  Not even Our Hero.

The only Wolf with any energy left is PCB, who follows them outside into the rain, asking who they are and where they came from... and, more importantly, why they're doing this!

Left, in her adorably stupid way, chooses to misunderstand and instead gives PCB their contact information and their itinerary of grocery stores for the next while.  I don't know what to say about that... do you plan in advance where you're going shopping?  Even if it's for food every day?  "Hm, tonight I'll go to the Eagle on North Main... and tomorrow, the Brown Store I think.  After that, let's say the Hilander on Rural, their produce section is decent."  But then, we're not bento battlers, are we?  No, we're much more sane than that.  Though half-priced food sounds useful...


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November 04, 2014

Ben-To! Ep10

So we have come at last to the dreaded Ep10 of Ben-To!.  "Dreaded" because it reintroduces the show to the concept of "plot", and as we've learned in the past, Ben-To! is at its worst when it tries to be even vaguely serious.  Ep09, for all of its squicky moments, is an excellent example of what the series does right... namely, fanservice and goofy.  But I'm getting ahead of myself, I think.  No, I should let you experience the sad flailing attempts at legitimate scripting as it comes.  So let us do just that!  I welcome you to the episodic writeup for Ben-To! Ep10! 

It's a beautiful day in East Bento City: blue skies, school-sponsored video games, and a cheese-and-watercress sandwich.  Really, what more could one ask for in life?  Don't ask Shaga, she's too busy reading a manga as a East High club-approved activity.  Really.  When I was in high school, I was in radio club.  I mean, that was cool, don't get me wrong, but as cool as the gig Shaga's got running?  Not even in the same area code.  But this being Ben-To!, it's not like we're going to get an idyllic episode watching Shaga eat a samitch and Ms Fortune wearing a silly animal hat.  No, the production staff is too cruel for that.  What they give us instead is...

...the East student council President and Veep.  They've come to the NES Club to point out that a) they haven't submitted their monthly activity report, and 2) to ask Shaga just what the hell she thought she was doing visiting West High and wearing its uniform to boot.  Ooooh, continuity from Ep09, who would have thought?  Shaga waves it off, saying that she was meeting her cousin "...and the Witch."

Left (on the right) gets all excited about this, fangirling all over the possibility of tracking down the elusive Ice Witch but Kyou, the more logicial of the two, runs roughshod over her sister, in effect telling her to shut her yap.  Wouldn't want to give the Beauty of the Lake a reason to be suspicious or nothin'.  Finally, after chastising her one last time, Left and Kyou take their leave.  Shaga quickly fills out the activity sheet, Ms Fortune falls out the window and causes a major traffic accident, and then...

...Pointy Chinned Bishy makes a reappearance.  This can't be good.


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