Kekkai Sensen 8 gets some of its energy back this week, even though the episode (and the next, apparently) all have to do with Zapp. Well, actually, that’s not true. We spend some time with Leo and Black early on, the latter so acting like a nice guy that I wonder if he really is, and later we learn that there’s a split personality going on here. Also Black and White say that they’re two pieces of the same thing, which makes me even more confused. I wonder if White is split in two like the person who’s part of the same thing she is, er, is. Never mind, it’s more teaser for the future.
Back to Zapp and his wasted life. He and we indulge a bit in that before we finally get the first decent battle we’ve seen in a while, where some kind of monster is battling another, and one of them is actually a highly-developed master of the blood-discipline, and wants Zapp to train with him, and when he says no, seals him into a blood-bubble with the other monster. It plays out in an amusing way, playing to Zapp’s lusts and not the purifying discipline you’d expect from this blood master. But it works. And next week we get more of Zapp, though by now I’m a lot more interested in the main arc with Black and White. Well, if there’s a good battle I won’t care much either way.
Knights of Sidonia also breaks out of its slump with a good first half, but it falls back into harem antics after that, until we’re teased with what should be the big story arc.
But back to good part first. The tentacles keep growing and then prevent Numi from disconnecting the monster from its Higgs-whatever supply. I’ll add that the brand new glowing red beastie growing a new weapon was one of the scariest moments in the second season, mainly because we didn’t know where it was pointing. The growing alarm onboard the Sidonia with the gravity going wonky, and Yuhata’s frustration because the classified nature of the experiment gone out of control made it hard for her to sortie the Gardes. But it’s settle, abruptly, when something cut it off and it went poof. Even that was scary because I expected it to appear again, somewhere else. And maybe scariest of all is Kobayashi’s decision to keep the experiments going. I thought it was a good thing when she killed off those immortal guys, but now I’m not so sure …
But it’s all covered up and the main characters have nothing better to do than to try to get Nagate’s attention. Izana turns into a girl at an embarrassing moment. That one pilot (Samari?) asks him out, talks about her growing fears about the big fighting coming up and propositions him with about the sexiest line a Sidonia girl can muster before learning that Nagate’s kind of an idiot, but that’s okay because she got to Nagate before En Honoka could–oh, yes, we’re allowed to ogle the Honoka sisters again. You know, I have nothing against harem series in general, and I don’t mind bits of it even in Sidonia, but it’s been three episodes with only a few scenes of importance, and the rest of it clones, gender-free people, and an artificially-produced alien hybrid all trying to make it with Nagate.
Nisekoi 2 7 also pulls the show out of its slump, in fact, they really ought to have begun the new season with this episode, never mind what that would have done to the Paula McCoy continuity. We meet Haru, a first-year on her first day, rescued from thugs by a brave fellow student whose face she didn’t see (guess who), and who is determined to meet him again and to warn another student, a villain named Raku Ichijo, to stay away from her big sister Onodera. Just the sort of thing you’d expect from this series, but it’s the first time all season we’ve had the level of playful confusion the show is capable of. The scene where they officially meet and she freaks out gets fresh energy every time another member of Raku’s harem shows up, and of course they all do (except Tsumugi, but they were saving her for a big belly-laugh at the end). It’s all Haru building on her own fear and hate while each girl wonders what she’s on about and Raku gets understandably more nervous. I expect things will get back to normal next week, but it’s nice to see the show rise above its doldrums once in a while.