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Plastic Memories and Sudden Feels

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Yay, new anime season.

I had a feeling that this show was gonna be pretty good. Ended up enjoying the show. Also, the main character has dacryphilia (arousal from seeing others crying or sobbing), probably. Not really. But I’ll tell myself it’s a legitimate reason for the above scene to have him immediately encapsulated within the girl’s charm.

Plastic Memories managed to just barely evade the high-school setting with a freshly employed 18-year-old MC named Mizugaki Tsukasa. Dogakobo hasn’t failed to disappoint on the animation front either. Yes yes, I know associating a studio with key and inbetween frame animation quirks isn’t good, since studios could simply rotate out staff members as needed, with individuals and teams that don’t need to hold any loyalty to any one production house. But how can you ignore the level of effort and time that’s crammed into nearly every first episode of every series that Dogakobo has done? Their work style on Celestial Method, Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun, and Engaged to the Unidentified is impossible to miss. The director from Engaged to the Unidentified is also on board, so it looks like we’re gonna get bodied pretty hard.

Spoilers ahead.

-maserbeam

Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun is really good.

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I’m not kidding. I’m jumping straight to the topic. Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun is a highly enjoyable comedy that’s so far been able to make me wince, cringe, laugh, and grin in all the right places. It should be no surprise as the studio behind the show has been proving repeatedly they’re experts at their craft. Studio Dogakobo’s early track record is spotty. Koihime Musou and 11eyes weren’t exactly telling of what they’d later produce. But starting with Yuru Yuri, things sort of escalated quickly. From GJ-bu to Engaged to the Unidentified, Dogakobo pretty much nailed the essence of each show, delivering humor with precise timing that would make a Starcraft 2 professional proud.  (Maybe not.)

This show has never let me down in the awkward situations department. It manages to teeter between unbearable and hilarious so often, that perhaps that may also be it’s downside, as I’m sure there’s a good number of people who are tired of conventional tropes. Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun has its share of familiarities. If you’ve come to this show after a bout of comedy shows, many of the punchlines aren’t absolute left-fielders. In cases like that I imagine there would only be a joke or two that may get you to grin.

The standard 3 episode test works well with this show. It sets the tempo, which at the moment seems to be the same since episode one. Every time it delves close to drama material, its swoops back towards comedy. It’s a regular, but well executed comedy show, that has Sakura Chiyo’s VA (Ozawa Ari) displaying comedic chops and straight-man jabs on par with Nakamura Yuuichi himself. Granted, Nakamura seems to be able to do this in a real world setting naturally. No clue if Ozawa could pelt it in the same manner.

In any case, I’m happy to hear female seiyuu in comedic roles are often asked to run the gamut of their vocal range, instead of remaining in the high registers. It can get grating after a while. Case in point: Saki Achiga-hen. Had the opportunity to rewatch it, and holy ball sacks, everyone’s voice is squeaky-squeaky all episode long.

-maserbeam

Nakamura Yuuichi, The Consistent Anime Badass

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Nakamura Yuuichi’s characters are consistently portrayed as some badass, although I’ve nothing against it. (He sort of is one, in real life.) Mahouka takes it to unbelievable levels that would make everyone in Kill la Kill want to hug Shiba Tatsuya in hopes of absorbing his powers through osmosis and romance. The only time I know Nakamura’s been some variant of a soft foppy plantain bastard, are the few scenes in Uta no Prince-Sama 1000% I randomly stumble upon on youtube. But that’s not him being a bastard, that was him being a trap. The themes contained therein however are not exactly my kind of thing. It’s probably being deceptive as usual however. The last show I veered away from in repulsion due to its artwork was Princess Princess, a pointy-chin anime filled with handsome young men dressed as girls. It ended up being a decent show. At least I didn’t need someone or some contraption to hold me down while watching it. Surprisingly, that wasn’t my first introduction to traps, despite being released way before OtoBoku, which was my first trap sighting.

Traps?! Engage tactical invasion! I mean.. evasion!

-maserbeam

Married to a Stranger

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The angle is perfect. I’m fully expecting a menu to pop up with a list of special attacks. Like a “Moé Moé Cannon” of some sort. Or breast missiles.

I haven’t said a thing about this show since the beginning of the season. Part of it was due to a drop in watching priority. Yet when I caught up to the latest episode, it’s a show that I know now that I wouldn’t have shoved to the wayside. It’s made by Dogakobo and has Mashiro-tan. What more could I ask for? In fact, Engaged to the Unidentified already has something I didn’t expect, which is Fujita Saki voicing the blonde lass. That hair ribbon is a nice touch. The overall character design is rather pleasing to the eyes. I guess that par for the course if it’s supposed to be a festival of moé.

I should be used to anime hair after so many years, but the amount of hair Suetsugi-san has is uncanny. First it flares outwards above her shoulders, but is also long to reach her lower back. It also expands horizontally before reaching the end. Just how much does that weigh? Oh well. She’s wearing thigh-highs so it’s all good.

Engaged to the Unidentified has done well so far. The plot is generously laid out, instead of waiting as long as it can before the show wraps up. Consistency seems to be the main game here, and it’s already shoved its way past other shows in feel-good vibes. I don’t normally appreciate high-school love stories (or are these characters in middle-school? damn the visuals) since I’m way past being a kid, but there’s zero melodrama for me to deal with. That’s pretty nice.

That’s what this show is. It’s quite nice. I supposed you can lump this show into the iyashikei category.

At first I was all Mashiro-tan is cho kawaii but then Suetsugi shows up and now I want to her thighs. HNGs’bro.

-maserbeam

The Zenith of Romance Workshop

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I did something interesting this weekend. I played FFXIV the whole time. I’m kidding. Honest. I imagine most people were crying like a Riko (see image above) during the first week when their server was going under maintenance, or they get DC’ed.

I always blurt out to my friends I tend to prioritize atmosphere, art, and music over plot, structure, and characters. While the last set of items do contribute to atmosphere, I personally view them a notch or several below art and music. It’s how my brain just seems to digest it the quickest. I’m not the fastest to discover culprits in detective stories. Nor am I able to analyze plots and characters like others do. It really does kinda suck having it as a weakness. Writing a review hinges upon skilled analysis of plot and characters. I wager I’d be quoting several people if I said that plot and characters can brute force masterpiece-tier legacy.

And I’m totally evading that boat. I bought a ticket on the train without rails. Permanently derailed.

I bought I ticket, too. I kinda regret it.

-maserbeam