I had expectations for Sankarea 4. Rea had died and come to life, now the story really starts! But this episode dithered and little got accomplished. It started well enough with Dan’Ichirou realizing what must have happened to Rea after she walked away from him. He must be at Furuya’s! Get him! So I was expecting another attempt at the poor boy’s balls. But they never got back to that. Instead the episode has our characters simply getting used to the situation. Rea sews up her wounds. Furuya is wondering what to do next. We get too many moments where he realizes that his dream to live with a hot zombie girlfriend has actually come true. The best stuff comes from Rea, secretly in Furuya’s bedroom unable to go anywhere, at least for the time being, and probably wondering what has really changed for her since she ran away … apart from the zombie stuff. Meanwhile Furuya is out trying to keep the secret but actually being a little neglectful. And there’s a crisis in the end, as Rea seems to be succumbing to rigor mortis, though it’s all done very cute we figure they’ll find an answer soon enough. So there’s a rule for you: don’t neglect your zombie or she’ll stiffen up.
Accel World 4 tries to explain why on earth Kuroyukihime would be interested in Haru, and it’s an understandable but not plausible reason why. She loves him because she sees him as the best Brain Burst person out there, capable of things she can only dream of. To her, physical appearances don’t matter. Which would be fine except Haru isn’t just a little fat guy, he’s a freakishly little fat guy unlike any other person in the series. No one else even comes close to him. Haru, who has shown some backbone this episode and gotten angry at her, tells her that she hates herself. Since he’s an expert on low self esteem, maybe she ought to take this thought seriously. Maybe that’s the attraction: they see each other’s self-loathing. Personal issues aside, Kuroyukihime uses her more developed powers to rescue Haru from a flying car, and from then on it’s action, well, the beginning of it, and intrigue. Had anyone here NOT figured out who Cyan-whatever was? Next week we’ll have an actual fight. For a show featuring avatars duking it out, it hasn’t had a lot of that yet. And that’s fine. If it was simply battle after battle I probably would have dropped this show by now.
The fourth Lupin III – Mine Fujiko to lu Onna is the most confounding one so far. It feels like they wanted to do too much. And there were inexplicable things like doing much of the Tosca bits with spoken voices rather than singing. Then there was the whole Ghost of Generia Palace business with its overtones of great gothic literature, its potential largely ignored because they only had 25 minutes. Not to mention the actual story which was so mixed up that I didn’t know who was what. I know sowing confusion is a valuable weapon in a mystery/caper series such as this one, but there are usually clues strewn about for the viewer to latch on to (or, in my case, usually miss), but here it’s people running in all directions while you try to figure out who’s chasing whom and for what reason. Well, it had a nice conclusion, one that WAS set up but completely unexpected. One other thing. It was sad to see Fujiko go the entire episode doing the bidding of others, or being caught. She wasn’t herself this week.
In Moretsu Pirates 17 something happens that we haven’t seen in ages! The pirates are actually in danger! The Hugh-Dolittle corporate fleet is shooting at them! Oh yeah, they probably aren’t trying to destroy the Bentanmaru since Jenny is onboard. But they still have a lot of problems. If H-D gets Jenny back the Bentenmaru and Harold Lloyd Insurance are screwed. But never mind that, Marika and her crew are doing it for love! Or for a lot of money. Okay, both. Actually, the real action came before when rescued Jenny leaps into the arms of Lynn. That was a little surprising, even though a thousand bloggers had already given it away, but what got me was the huge swoon from all the girls on the bridge. And it helped that Lynn was dressed in quasi-nautical garb and Jenny in a wedding gown.
Polar Bear’s Cafe 4 has one amusing half, where the animals talk about their smartphones, and one dreadful half, where Polar Bear takes Penguin out to teach him driving techniques. Maybe it would have been funnier if Penguin had actually gotten behind the wheel, or if Panda had done anything but talk about food, or if they hadn’t repeated the drive-thru joke two or three times too often, even if Polar Bear tried to salvage that bit with his “I couldn’t think of a punchline” joke. Watch the first half.