In Jashin-chan Dropkick we get the setup from the OP. Jashin wants to kill her summoner, Yurine, for summoning her. So the episode begins and she spends all her time trying to do just that, to the horror and resignation of some fellow demons and angels who hang out at Yurine’s apartment. Let’s see we have Medusa, the sweet one, whose hair is quite normal, and Minos, a cowgirl of some kind, and Pekola, who’s an angel so disapproves of all this demon ruckus, but doesn’t have the nerve to stop it. And of course, Yurine, a goth girl with eyepatch who’s pretty much one step ahead of Jashin. In the first half, Jashin-chan gets chopped for hot-pot because she was greedy and ate all the beef. Then there’s an attack with a crowbar, and finally a birthday party where the taser falls into the wrong hands, so it’s more Jashin-meat for the hot-pot!
It’s all nutty, bloody, and alas, I didn’t laugh very much. I like how they skipped the origin stories and just stuck it into the OP so we don’t have to bother with it. But while I liked some of the bloody hijinks, it’s obviously a show where one person will try to outdo another person and fail every week with their tail in a hot pot, maybe several times an episode. They’ll add little stories about the side characters from time to time, but they frankly didn’t interest me too much. Also, I had problems with how it all flowed. They spent too much time on the angel Pekola being tempted by meat in scene one, for example. And why focus on her and not Yurine? I did like the fourth wall breaking, but that probably won’t be enough for me to watch episode 2.
In Phantom in the Twilight we get two Chinese students arriving at London (a cozy, picturesque London) to begin studies. While wandering around the tourist traps a blurry thing steals their luggage and other stuff, including a keepsake ring that belonged to our heroine Ton’s great-great-great-great grandmother, or something, Sha Rijan, who once called London her home. Anyway, Ton bravely chases after the blurry thing which only she can see, until she does a magic spell which leads her to a bishie guy cafe, where she walks through a mirror. The magical bishies figure out the deal and they wind up fighting the goblin in Hyde park. Ton discovers she has MORE magical powers, and afterwards Vlad (head bishie guy) hypnotizes her so she doesn’t remember a thing. What fun is that? Well, her friend Shinyao’s gonna get kidnapped next week, as the tag cheerfully tells us, so she’ll be back in action soon.
Another one I feel torn about. It’s maybe a reverse harem for one, and frankly, visually, it feels a little crude and lifeless. On the other hand, I enjoyed just about everything else. The bishies are less annoying than most, more fatherly in their attention toward Ton. I liked how Ton leaped into whatever trouble around her–passive females are almost as bad as bishie males. The story was laid out fairly well, though I didn’t care for how Shinya dropped out of the picture when the action started, and there was that dull train conversation. On the other hand, it kept me interested in Ton’s g-g-g-grandma’s history and what Ton will discover about herself. I might watch another episode.
Kyoto Teramachi Sanjou no Holmes starts with a quick flashback (A girl named Aoi visits an antique shop in Kyoto) jumps to now (Aoi now works there), then jumps back, to her first meeting with Kiyotaka, known as Holmes. In the present day a guy brings in a bowl for Holmes to appraise and gets upset when Holmes calls it a fake. He doesn’t get any happier when Holmes goes into a, er, Holmes-like appraisal of the man himself, analyzing his clothes and behavior and basically saying the man knew the item was fake all along. He does the same thing to poor Aoi in the flashback, telling her how long she’s been in Kyoto, and at times seems able to read Aoi’s mind. And so begins the weekly deductions of Holmes, while Aoi looks on in awe.
There might be an overriding story arc involving that one man, but this feels like it’s mostly going to be a bunch of standalone stories. I’m not crazy about those. Holmes is an interesting character just for his deductive abilities, but Aoi’s a bit dull and shallow. On the other hand, it’s educational. In one episode we learned a little about Karatsu ware, and a little about the life of Hakuin Ekaku. And despite the show’s sedate, slightly dull nature, the presence of forgeries and forgers gives the show a dangerous edge. This is one of those shows where I’ll wait to see if I feel like watching another episode next week.
Tensai Bakabon returns after eighteen years with a new series. I’m not familiar with it but the show is kind enough to reintroduce the characters. In the starter, Papa realizes that they haven’t changed at all in those eighteen years and goes about changing things, especially himself. He holds auditions for a new voice actor, transforms himself into something out of Onihei Hankachou, then a WOMAN out of Onihei Hankachou. He orders that Tokyo be filled with Hooters, turns Bakabon into six Bakabons and then into bystanders, turns Rerere into a rhoomba, etc. Until Mama puts her foot down and things get back to normal for episode two.
Ahem, I don’t think the original Tensai Bakabon was this weird. I’m sure it will settle down next week, but this episode was a hell of a lot of fun. Everyone is completely aware that they’re in an anime, and that it’s been eighteen years, and the creators have a lot of fun playing with it. Countless art styles, changing the aspect ratio with physical force, cameos by Nozawa Masako and Jun Fukuyama (the latter has to play Papa in both male and female forms), not to mention Black Jack, and a nod to the late manka-ka, Akatsuka Fujio. I spent more time looking up references than I did watching the episode. That might be a problem for some people. At least in this episode, newer viewers like myself won’t catch all the references. I doubt that I’ll keep watching when the show hits its routine, but I’m glad I watched episode 1.
Tenrou: Sirius the Jaeger is the latest PA works production, and since their shows are generally smarter than average I decided to give it a try. The episode hops from one thing to another. We get a declaration of a new offensive from some vampires who then bloodily munch on the nice girls brought in, and then the good guys show up. Our central character (unless he died at the end of the episode), Yully, gets a little obsessed with smells and goes after the vampires himself, to the annoyance of his comrades. His group, the Jaegers, head to pre-war Japan, poorly disguised as trade magnates, where we get some internal infighting between this government faction and that. Then more blood, and a chase at the end where Yully maybe buys it, but at least he hacked a couple limbs off the nasty Agatha.
I said the episode hops around. It does so sometimes in the middle of scenes, and figuring out the continuity can get confusing, but I figure we’ll figure out the whole story eventually, though I don’t really know why they brought in that murderer guy when he’s not needed except to distract the police. Also there’s that nice girl Ryouko … If you don’t know much about pre-war Japan, and I don’t, I’m sure there are things that will go whoosh over your head. On the other hand, it looks great, and the animation is up to PA Works standard. There’s a splendid, vivid car chase near the end that’s worth watching on its own. So, a little hard to get into, but it might be worth it for what could be a well-told story and the eye candy. And the gore. Lots of gore.