Fall 2022 1

And so, the new season has begun, right in a moment when I have almost no free time. Long story. But here’s the start of my Fall 2022 previews. As usual, I’ll only watch shows I want, which, sadly, means no sports shows, not because they’re bad, they’re just not to my taste. Also excessive horror is out, usually. And no sequels if I dropped or never saw the original season. We’ll see about reboots. Also as usual I’ll depend on Random Curiosity for the viewing order. So here we go with …

The season begins with a scary moon.

… another Isekai series. Tensei Shitara Ken Deshita, where a guy dies, blah-blah, and he’s reincarnated as a sword. He takes it in stride and finds he has some minimal skills and can move around a bit, enough to kill some goblins and break the gem inside them, thus giving him their abilities. He quickly levels up (stat screens and all) and has a wonderful time wiping out fearsome monsters and getting stronger, until he lands on ground that negates his abilities, so he’s miserably stuck. While he’s been doing all this we get glimpses of a catgirl slave who is treated terribly by some jerks, but she has a slave collar on so can’t do much. It’s basically a matter of time before catgirl meets sword, and it happens when a monster attacks the slavers’ cart. Now, the sword has big power but the catgirl, Fran, does not, but together it’s enough, and so off they go on a quest to get Fran to evolve.

I like the dramatic lighting.

Not much more to say about it. The sword, named “Teacher” by Fran has no reason to hang out with this feeble yet stubborn catgirl Fran, but he’s happy to do it. Not sure why unless it’s because he’s afraid of being stuck in some energy-sucking dirt again, or maybe he’s instinctively following the rules of this land. Teacher, who’s only visual expression is a set of eyes, is quite expressive in voice, thank heavens. Fran isn’t much of anything yet, maybe not out or her slave-girl funk. She’s the one I worry about if I keep watching. Not sure I will. Apart from the novelty of having a sword as a hero, this looks to be yet another predictable isekai series.

A happy 1920s Osaka crowd.

Next it’s Uchi no Shishou wa Shippo ga Nai, where Mameda, a young tanuki girl in the sticks, goes to Osaka to take care of some business with her uncle, or that’s the claim. Actually she wants to get to the big city and do all sorts of tanuki-trickery on them. But the people of 1920s Osaka are on to her games and soon she’s on the run. She tries tricking a young woman who is a Rakugota, failing miserably, and then winds up watching her act, nearly getting caught, until she’s saved by the Rakugoka, who takes her off on a flying ship and tries to get her to get a regular ship, this one for Kobe, but Mameda doesn’t board …

This has a few things I’m mildly interested in. First, the setting. The show does a nice job of showing off the buildings, clothing, and color and lights of Osaka in the 1920s. It was a pleasure to watch and reminiscent of the terrific Uchouten Kazoku series from a while back. There was also the reality that humanity was outgrowing and outshining the old tanuki, to the point that most of them are resigned to just fading away, but still some of them want to be tricked in a fun way. On the borderline of pleasure and disinterest to me is the rakugo aspect. The woman, Daikokutei, gives a full performance of one, but many of the jokes were obscure and strange to me (being a 21st century foreigner), and the show even explains the jokes in a monologue after the credits, so maybe even 21st century nihonjin will have a problem. The story is little more than “young person from the country goes to see the city, learns a skill, and has adventures” type of thing. I can’t say I will watch any more, in spite of the Uchouten Kazoku vibe it often gives off.

We had a scary moon, now here’s a scary sun.

Noumin Kanren no Skill Bakka Agetetara Naze ka Tsuyoku Natta stars Al Wayne, your average farmer in a fantasy world where everyone gets pop-up stats windows. He’s maxed out his farming skills, which is nice enough, because farming is all he wants to do. Then a lone dragon terrorizes some adventurers, and Al destroys it … by throwing a carrot. Even Al is surprised. At the capital of Meigis he thwarts a kidnapping of the princess Fal-Ys, whom I’m going to call “Fal” from now on. Then a bunch of monsters head for the city to conquer it for some demon lord named Romeo Vandred, and when he’s about to kill the king, Al shows up and shows more traditional combat skills to defeat him, which disappointed me. I wanted to see more vegetable combat … But it seems Al leveled up in a lot of places. So now, like it or not, he’s going to farm a plot near the city and help out with the monster and demon problems …

Ai stares blankly at the carrot he just destroyed a dragon with.

With a CARROT! Okay, there’s not much to this. It’s basically an overpowered hero saving the kingdom and possibly getting the princess. The farming angle is novel but doesn’t change my mind much. One good point might be Al himself. All he wants to do is farm things and wants nothing to do with royalty, and he runs away when given the initial “work for the kingdom” pitch. When Romeo Vandred asks how Al used a hoe to defeat his attack, Al launches into a lecture about bringing up soil from below to keep the ground healthy, though you only need to do it with plants with deep roots, etc. I found this kind of endearing, and I hope there’s more agriculture-related stuff in later episodes. Oh, and the fearsome dragon at the beginning (the one Al destroyed WITH A CARROT!) looked really good, some nice CGI work there. But on the whole it’s another silly fantasy show.

The door opens on Rein’s dismissal meeting.

We have another silly fantasy series next: Yuusha Party o Tsuihou Sareta Beast Tamer, Saikyoushu no Nekomimi Shoujo to Deau, a name I’m not going to type in its entirety again. Anyway, it starts with our hero, a beast tamer named Rein, being kicked out of the heroes party for being dead weight, or they’re just jerks. With no future he decides to do the adventurer’s test, and live a free, traveling life. During the test he meets a girl being menaced by a big tiger thing. He’s no match for it, but once he distracts the tiger, Kanade, the girl and “cat spirit,” dispatches it. Why she couldn’t do that before is waved off as fatigue and hunger. Anyway, the two hit it off, and he winds up “taming” her (with her permission), and we learn that while he’s just a beast tamer, he’s an exceptionally powerful one, natch.

Yeah, nothing much interesting here. Kanade takes way too much of a liking to Rein at the start and is enthralled with everything he does. Rein’s a nice guy, a little boring, not much to say about him. Judging from the OP and ED we’ll meet more catgirls later, so Rein’s got a nice feline harem to look forward to. The only thing that I’m looking forward to is the jerkwad hero party getting some comeuppance, otherwise …

A grand ball where our heroine is about to get dumped.

Another show with a long title, Akuyaku Reijou nano de Last Boss o Katte Mimashita, stars Aileen, caught in an otome game that she played in her past life. There’s no blow on the head or anything to wake her into this world, she’s suddenly there, as Prince Cedric publicly rejects her at a ball. She knows what will happen, that the half-demon Claude will give into rage and despair and off-handedly kill her in act III. But this is still act II and she has time to stop it. To that end, she begins trying to woo Claude, drugging his guardian crow to get to the dark castle, and in the end rescuing a little demon-doggie that got loose, much to the shock of Cedric and his group, who all seem rather unpleasant. I think it’s good that she’s cut loose from him. As for Claude, he turns from icy menace to a sort of bewilderment over what Aileen’s up to.

“Here’s your crow that I drugged to sneak into your palace. But I gave him a nice bow tie.”

Sort of like Hamefura, only the heroine has less time to change events, and Aileen is less dense and more headstrong than Catarina. That’s to her advantage, and we see her endlessly scheming and conniving. On the other hand, she’s upfront with Claude and he seems to respect that. Claude could be a total bore, a glowering, handsome bad guy in black, but the show gives him a gimmick of accidentally letting loose with some random magic when he’s flustered, to the amusement of his assistant Keith, giving him a human touch. Another nice touch is the role of gender politics in this world; Aileen was pushed aside by her brothers, and when she tried to excel on her own was accused of being haughty and unpleasant. The episode as a whole felt a little slow and heavy, maybe it’s too much of that romantic music they play, and Aileen and Claude can’t get through it. But it’s just episode one.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s