Kantai Collection ends pretty much the way we expected.
Akagi is about to get sunk by some aerial monsters but Fubuki shows up just in time. She and her team kick some butt briefly, until another bad guy shows up, so more good guys show up, and more bad guys show up, and while we’re trying not to think about the incredible coinkidink it all is, all these girls showing up at just the right moment, spouting trademark lines, not to mention torpedoes and cannon shells, we actually get an answer. The whole thing was a sneaky trick, a ruse to fool either the bad guys or fate. Not sure which. And so it ends happily and it’s peacetime, and the girls get scuttled (not really).
I wish they had gone on with this fate business in a little more detail. I don’t like the idea of fate determining outcomes in fiction, but I like very much when characters fight against it, especially when they win. What makes it more compelling is the WWII aspects which suffuse more of the series, especially the sea battles, because that gives the whole affair tragic, doomed overtones. But instead, the finale’s mind set was first “We must fight fate … We can’t fight our fate … Yay! We beat fate!” I suppose I shouldn’t have expected much more from a generally light show with cute girls, even if they are battleships and destroyers too.
Other than that the episode, and the series, was predictable but fun to watch. Friendships made, silly filler episodes between arcs, an early death to set people on edge, the growth of the protagonist, nothing really special there, but the battle scenes always looked great (though I wish they had done less chatting while the enemy is trying to kill them), shells exploding in the water, girls skating around and them, firing their own weapons, surrounded by planes and a purple-grey sky and sea … I enjoyed that very much. So when the second season comes along I’ll probably watch it.
In Yuri Kuma Arashi 11 I thought we’d get an explanation as to why Kureha was facing trial at Judgemens, but they don’t get to that until the very end, and there’s still no explanation for it. Instead we get more flashbacks to when Kureha and Ginko were friends, adding more details about how they were separated and what Ginko did back in Bear-world. About the only forward action is Kureha’s being held captive to lure Ginko in, and Ginko’s internal battle with Mitsuko, her “desire.” Rather a disappointment, I thought. Oh, I liked the dramatic music and the overall heroic tone of Ginko’s rejection of desire and her refusal to back down on love (the anime phrase of the year, so far, unless you prefer “gao gao”), but all Mitsuko really got to do was whisper in Ginko’s ear. They could have taken that farther. Oh, and Lulu sneaks back and takes a bullet intended for Ginko, finally never getting anything for all the love she put out, but death. Now THAT’S not backing down on love.
Two episodes of Koufuku Graffiti and I can barely think of enough for one entry. Let’s see, in #10 “Chewy, Melty,” we meet the shy and withdrawn Yuki, who lives downstairs door. Through a series of misunderstandings they wind up eating pizza together, and naturally we learn that Yuki is another ero-faced food lover. You know, Ryou and Kirin have incredible luck with that, or maybe it’s that eating with them actually turns others into ero-faced food lovers. Interesting theory. Or maybe seeing them eat so erotically makes you feel erotic too.
Episode 11 (Chop-chop, Slurp, and Crunchy, Shining) are all about basic study foods, which turn out to be ramen and cutlet sandwiches. Kudos to the show to demonstrate that mundane foods, even prepackaged ones, can make satisfying meals. It doesn’t hurt that Kirin, who seems to be getting better at cooking, adds her own touches to the ramen. I’m not crazy about cutlet sandwiches, so that part didn’t interest me that much, though the scene where they discover Shiina has already been accepted was more fun to watch than most of the other bits they put in to kill time before the eating begins.