Mad catch-up: KonoSuba, Phantom World, Haruchika, Shoujo-Tachi

He pretty much deserved that.
He pretty much deserved that.

Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku wo! 5 has a first part that doesn’t make a lot of sense. Aqua wants a dangerous quest, so they stick her in a cage and put her in a lake to purify it, never mind about the alligators. When the alligators show up the others just stand around and watch. Okay, she’s safe in the cage, maybe give her some support other than shouting encouragement. The second half is far better. We meet Kyouya, a guy who Aqua had sent to the land to be a hero, in her previous job. Trouble is, the guy takes himself seriously and because his magic sword does his fighting for him, overinflates his abilities, and means to rescue Aqua from the losers she actually chooses to hang out with. Nice contrast with Kazuma, who’s not a narcissistic romanticist but an experienced realist, who worked his way up.

The EPIC BATTLE rages.
The EPIC BATTLE rages.

With #6 we finish a major story arc in triumph. I didn’t even know we were IN a big story arc, but the series treats it as one anyway. Basically, the demon general, Verdian, comes back because Megumin’s still been exploding at his castle, and there is a great, epic battle where everyone, including Verdian, gets to show themselves at their bravest and goofiest, while at home I laughed a lot. Mostly what made me laugh were the replies and asides (usually Kazuma’s, but the girls have good moments too), not the battle. I figured early on what Kazuma would have to steal to weaken Verdian. And so it ends in triumph and some closure that we didn’t really expect, or need, but it was a nice moment.

Another EPIC BATTLE rages.
Another EPIC BATTLE rages.

In Musaigen no Phantom World 6 we visit another fantasy land, this on in Kurumi’s head, and it’s the usual fluffy-fluffy world you get with adult concepts on what goes on in little girls’ heads. And apart from the number of bears in it, it’s boring as hell, but cute. I did like the magic rake weapon she had–a nice connection to meeting the girls in the sandbox, but damn, I wish the stories in this show were more interesting.


And ep 7 is little better. Everyone starts turning into cats (and for the longest time, no one notices), and it’s traced to a phantom in an abandoned mansion that just happens to be near the school. I know I have a viewer’s mindset, but it seems to obvious that a place so close, formerly a haven for stray cats and cat lovers, would have something to do with this catness everyone was getting, especially since these people are supposed to be investigating phantoms. I hate this show’s simplemindedness sometimes, and I say this about an episode that was tossing around physics paradoxes and questions of human observation of phenomena. On the other hand, the weird images the kids all get when prowling around the mansion worked very well, subtle at first, then getting crazier and crazier. Stuff like that is what keeps me from dropping this show.


Haruchika 6 goes off the show’s usual path, which is a good thing. There’s a stealth clarinet player hanging around, and it looks like another trouble-student-gets-their-problem-solve-and-joins-the-band type of story, and Naoko does have her problems. Her mother left, her father’s family are assholes. So she turned to music, but she’s really good and probably doesn’t want to join a batch of beginners. But it turns out she’s also possibly going deaf (how they deduce this fact is Haruto’s weekly pulling answers out of his ass event). So now we don’t know where the episode is going. They have a decent scene where Naoko honestly assesses the band’s chances at the contest, a nice quick bit about following the difficult road you choose, and then Naoko brings up ANOTHER troubled student before saying she can’t join herself. Nice of her, when they can’t solve her problem, to provide future plot fodder before she goes.

In episode 7 it solves a mystery even though there really isn’t one. I mean, who cares who the geezers are on that radio show, or where they’re broadcasting from? As for Aso, the weird geology girl, discovering the location should change nothing. In fact, I’m trying to figure out what the people in the episode were trying to do. The SC pres wanted Aso to come in to discuss giving her club’s budget to the Brass Band club. No one has any objection to it, so why not just do it? So the story becomes tracking down Aso, ruined by her just showing up, so it becomes trying to get Kaiyu back at school, which he seems perfectly happy to do now. The whole affair seems pointless. Nonetheless, I think it’s one of the series’ best episodes. I especially liked the casual way everyone listened and occasionally talked back to the talk show. Also, there was no futile attempt at tearjerking. So even though little added up, I enjoyed it more than usual.


First, for Shoujo-tachi wa Kouya wo Mezasu 6, we get a self-proclaimed fanservice episode. This isn’t Saekano; I don’t know if this series needs to go all meta on itself, but they do it anyway, at least for this episode. So we get the usual beach scenes and Kuroda trying to recreate some of the famous tropes for “research,” even though the episode did them earlier. We also get Yuka blowing up (in her cute genki way) at Bunta for paying more attention to Kuroda than to her, officially laying foundations for the next story arc. You can’t blame her for getting frustrated I guess; she’s been given very little to do not only as a member of the production team but as a character in the series. There. I just helped the show get more meta.


… Moving on to #7, and the next story arc was taken care of in about ten minutes. In order to both observe, and as a change of pace, Bunta and Yuka go on a date. Earlier in the episode the gang were trying out all sorts of elaborate confession scenarios, all of them a little twisted so fun to watch, Yuka actually does get to confess to Bunta, laughing it off as “not really,” a confession technique just as effective as the others, though it doesn’t do much in terms of the story. Nevertheless, it cheers up Yuka; she’s her usual happy-genki self at the end, and that’s that. Next it’s lockdown time for Bunta.

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