Nisekoi 17, Captain Earth and Kanojo Flag 5, Mekaku 4

Don't sound so disappointed.
Don’t sound so disappointed.

Captain Earth 5 gives us a low-key story about a mission to sneak in and retrieve a prisoner in orbit, well, it might actually be an excuse for Teppei to meet his genetic “father,” Eiji, and for Akari to see her mother, with the secret mission on the side. Who knows? I’m still trying to get the conspiracies straight, and Teppei is still trying to get his emotions straight after last week, when he learned he might actually be bad guy. His father is technically a bad guy, too, but apart from the crimes he did he’s not a bad sort at all, sorry he didn’t spend time with Teppei, approving of Akari as a girlfriend, etc. I don’t know if it was a good idea to dump all this on Teppei, especially on an espionage mission, but everything seems to work out for the moment, except that Eiji got away from both the good guys and the bad guys. More for Teppei to chew on.

Damn cat.
Damn cat.

Not much to say about Nisekoi 17. The plot is at a complete standstill, and instead we have a festival episode where Raku and Onodera try to get their habds on a rare love charm, and the gods of comedy interfere in a number of ways (the gods of comedy LOVE to mess with the characters in this show). Everyone in the cast shows up to get in the way somehow, and then, a random roll of the dice for the comedy gods, a cat shows up. It winds up like you’d expect, except that Raku and Onodera actually get some nice time together with no complications, until the cat shows up.

Another damn cat (not pictured).
Another damn cat (not pictured).

Speaking of cats, Mekaku City Actors gets back on track this week with a good episode starring that boy from episode 2 that Momo did all that comical fleeing with. It looks like another sad, funny tale of unrequited love as he does everything his crush, Hiyori, tells him to do, while some weirdo eats all the food at the dinner table, until he goes into a Hormuraesque time loop where Hiyori dies each time, thanks to another damn cat (this must be “cats mess with people week” at Shaft), and things get much darker, until a very brief moment of twisted triumph at the very end, followed by the weekly monster story update. Once again, the images, especially the long shots of sidewalks and silhouettes of wires and poles, remind me more of Bakemonogatari than Nisekoi, are used to splendid effect. Unlike last week’s confusing rescue at the mall, these images told you everything you needed to know clearly, and gives me fresh hope for the series.


Kanojo ga Flag o Oraretara has set up a pattern. It will spend almost the entire episode on mundane anime things, like an athletic festival, or this week, harem maintenance via serial dating, and switch to something dark, like Souta’s impending death, for one minute or so, just to remind us that there is an overall plotline at work here. Here in episode 5 that moment comes right at the end, when Ruri reveals the first of the really important doors, only for them to learn the real fun is through a crack in the wall of the room beyond the door. But again, this all happens five minutes from the end. The serial-dating that takes up the rest of the time could have been dismal, but the show is better than average at this sort of thing, so instead we get some peaceful, pleasant, occasionally dull scenes with Souta and each girl, livened up by the odd gag that usually signals the end of that section. However, I sort of wish they’d spend more time with the arc.

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