Sidonia and Nanana 2, Kanojo Flag 2-3, and an observation about bread

Knights of Sidonia 2 continues to set up three things to interest us: Nagate’s joining the real world, so to speak, the school rivalries and jealousies, and the nasty Gauna.

Geez, we just met her five minutes ago.
Geez, we just met her five minutes ago.

Least interesting to me is the middle one. I’m not a fan of watching students being ostracized by their classmates. The hateful pranking they do to Nagate will get old fast if they keep it up. Also, that bishie Kunato’s behavior is already getting old, though I understand the twinge of jealousy he must feel when this untrained newbie gets to fly the old school Type 17 that he wanted to fly. And it’s fun when the Elite Four, sent to the school, seek out Nagate and not him. And they’re setting up a love triangle between Izana and Shizuka, annoying for me because I can’t tell them apart. Odd that the non-gender characters are the ones in the triangle with Nagate. As for Nagate, they’re doing a nice job of showing him adjust to the new surroundings, especially since he’s aware of his status and makes up for it by doing his best, in spite of that pointless peeping in the locker room business. The PTSD he shows after the battle felt real, though I hope he shakes it off. I like vomit scenes even worse than hazing scenes.

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But the highlight of the show comes at the start. The fight with the gauna is a thrilling and nightmarish thing. It helps that they introduce a new character, with her own background, and almost immediately kill her off. Things move so quickly and it’s so black and blinding white that at times it’s hard to follow. But they get the right moments down, the tentacles speeding toward Nagate, Nagate waking up in a sort of frenzy, and the counterattack. You wonder what sort of genes he’s got to be able to do that, but it makes for a great moment, so I don’t really care. Good episode, apart from the locker-room bit.

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Ryuugajou Nanana no Maizoukin 2 didn’t do terribly much to impress. As expected, we meet some new people, both robbers and, er, detectives. The latter two, Tensai the master detective and Daruko her assistant, tracking down the thing that floated down last week, track it to Juugo’s apartment. And later, as part of a test to join the Adventure Society, she solves a problem of getting to some planted treasure. In other words, she’s good. On the other hand, she’s annoying as hell, at least when it comes down to just her and Juugo, who hasn’t the brains or gumption that she has and so lets her do whatever. Juugo also exhibits his big strength, this week, his stamina and ability to take punishment, but these aren’t very fun to watch unless he’s getting smacked around. Oh, he also has a thing for maids, and this is exploited twice by two different women. And Daruka’s a trap. And Nanana can’t leave that apartment. I hope when they finally get all the characters in place they’ll go and do something interesting, and that puzzle they had to solve was, though we didn’t know the rules or it. So let’s meet the other characters quick and move on, shall we?

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In fact, here’s an example of introducing characters. In episode two of Kanojo ga Flag o Oraretara, Souta meets the following: Kikuno, an older sister type, Tsumugi, who either runs the school or is a classmate and looks like an elementary school girl, Mimori, the student council president, Meganu, who claims to be a boy in spite of much evidence to the contrary, plus the school’s Public Works Club and a bunch of classmates. And you remember Akane and Nanami from last week. Basically, rather than have episodes where the haremettes are introduced one by one, they decide to fling them all at us in one episode. And, naturally, they immediately fling themselves at Souta. It’s not all bad (if you consider being the center of a harem bad). They fix up his dilapidated dorm (in pink) and four of them move in with him. Souta has no time to do anything but remark on their flags, and read a mysterious letter and, oh, recall a flashback with still another girl, Sakura. With all the stuff going on, I nearly forgot about, you know, the plot.

The latest girl is a robot!
They welcome yet another girl to the dorm.

Then I watched episode three. Two more girls thrown in for good measure. One is a robot named Ruri, and the other is Rin, a childhood friend, which was obvious before that training scene to everyone except the two of them. That makes 26 girls so far. As for, you know, the plot, it only comes up once when Souta thinks of it, then goes away when he cheerfully decides he doesn’t have time for that now. I’m getting to like Souta. He’s a more passive harem leader than some, but he’s clearly enjoying his situation. As for the girls, they’re a good ensemble so far. They’re constantly bouncing their character types against each other and the timing so far has been excellent. A dumb show like this has an advantage if the large cast is lively. However, I’m a little worried that they’re beginning to repeat their trait lines too often. So now they have a week-long athletic festival to endure, and they must win or Souta will get expelled, whether the school wants him to or not. Or something. Ask Mimori.

I’m not going to regularly blog Escha & Logy no Atelier. Probably. Episode 2 was more of the same lazy direction and predictable character types, and a new village with weird hats. Again, it reminds me of Shining Hearts, bland and completely harmless. And then there’s this.

What is it with questionable quality anime and baked goods?
What is it with questionable quality anime and baked goods?

Meanwhile, on that show with the weird rabbit …

It's spreading!
It’s spreading!
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4 thoughts on “Sidonia and Nanana 2, Kanojo Flag 2-3, and an observation about bread

  1. I’d be honest – Flag is a fun ride, if you are new the harem genre (and meta-harem in particular), and are willing to utterly switch your brain off for 20 minutes. My biggest beef with Flag though, is that it’s pacing is just horrid, and it’s Meta, not particularly ground breaking.

  2. Oh, I’ve watched a number of harem shows, certainly enough to make up my mind about things that work. I don’t care if a show is not groundbreaking–I care about the execution, and they’re doing it right so far. I like the manic energy the group scenes have, and the performers’ timing is spot-on. I do agree about turning my brain off, but some dumb shows are better for turning the brain off than others.

  3. Important note regarding Knights of Sidonia’s characters: Hoshijiro Shizuka is female. That and their differing hairstyles are the main ways that I use to tell her and Izana apart from one another.

    • Ah, hairstyles! The first anime character differentiator I learned. Hopefully, the girl and the whatever-she-is will get together in the same frame so I can compare. It doesn’t help that the non-gender characters in the show read as female to me …

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