Anime roundup 3/25/2021: Trapped in the Past

Otherside Picnic finale – Sorawo and Toriko have one more monster to fight before they can send the soldiers back to Okinawa. Also they still have an exploration vehicle parked on Kozakura’s lawn to deal with, another girls’ day out to arrange, and, if they can find time, some feelings to confess to each other.

Okay, maybe it’s a bit of a letdown on the feelings-confessing front, given that this was billed as a romance. But you can see that they have accepted at some level that they’re right for each other and ought to continue to face life as a team: Sorawo, Toriko, and their tobacco harvester built for two.

This finale had everything that makes Otherside Picnic good. On the one hand, the creepy world and monsters of the Otherside, supported with sound work that has been absolutely incredible week after week; on the other, it’s also sweet, funny, and fun— terms that one rarely associates with cosmic horror.

This may not be the absolute best thing that has been on this season, but being solid, short, and completely free of bad anime habits, it’s a show I feel I can recommend to almost anyone, including people just looking to try anime for the first time.

(FunimationAnimeLabWakanimAniverseBahamut Anime Crazy)

Higurashi: When They Cry – GOU finale – In her next chat with Eua, Satoko admits she was startled by Teppei’s attempt to reform, but is assured that this sort of thing is going to be happening more and more as the accumulated effects of the time loop start to weigh on everyone. Nevertheless, Satoko will keep grinding away until she can collect enough tools to get what she wants.

It’s implied Takano is the latest person to be affected and want to change her ways. She’s supposed to sacrifice Tomitake, leading to his disappearance the night of the Watanagashi festival, but chooses not to this time. She doesn’t specifically say it’s because of mysterious dreams, but looking back on other memories in the photo album implies that that’s what’s going on. Plus it gives us a look at her family’s odd naming convention. “Hifumi” is written with the characters for 1, 2, and 3; “Miyo” with the characters 3 and 4.

Speaking of numbers, did anyone think, in the scene with the briefcase, that it would have been simpler for Satoko to just sneak up and watch Takano entering the code, then reset if she was spotted, than to keep resetting time over and over and over again (presumably repeating a few days every time) until she managed to get the code by brute force? That seems like something that would have occurred to her at some point.

Anyway, she has the serum to induce Hinamizawa Syndrome in any random person she wants now. This now leads to the night when Teppei and Ōishi went nuts. Except it doesn’t, because this is where the season halts, right in the middle of a long flashback and with what feels like not enough questions to sustain another season. But another season we get. It’ll be called Higurashi: When They Cry – SOTSU, and I don’t really feel like I can give a proper verdict on this part of the story until I see how that goes.


Attack on Titan #73-74 – Eren sits down to explain himself to his friends, but his explanation is that they are sheeple and he’s the one who’s truly making choices of his own free will. Meanwhile, his followers choose to let the newest batch of cadets take sides by beating up Eren’s old instructor. Even more meanwhile, Zeke is the freest of all after his guards have all sabotaged themselves with an intercepted case of wine.

It’s a reasonable assumption on Zeke’s part that a typical soldier would have trouble fighting his own horribly transformed comrades. However, the viewer knows from long acquaintance with him that Levi is totally the kind of guy who would kill them efficiently and then take it out on Zeke. Now Zeke has just suffered massive damage of the sort that even a Titan would have trouble regenerating from. This is where Levi could bring in another Titan to eat him and become the new Beast Titan, but oops, all the nearby Titans are dead now.

The good news, if you want to call it that, is that the plan Eren has signed on to is actually not to try unleashing the doomsday weapon. Instead, it’s merely to sterilize everyone carrying the genes that allow Titan transformations and allow the Curse of Ymir to die out.

One possible side effect of this plan is hinted at by Ksaver’s story of his secret Marleyan family. Not everyone that Eldians choose to have kids with will have become homicidally ashamed of the fact, plus there have probably been Eldians who vanished into the outside world entirely, with the result that there are probably far more people with Titan potential than anyone has realized.

Now an even more terrifying problem faces all of Paradis: there’s around another season’s worth manga to adapt, and only one more episode in what has been billed as the final season of Attack on Titan. Our choices are an abrupt, rushed ending; a movie to finish off the story which never makes it to international streaming, as happened with Persona 5; or, hopefully, an admission that Attack on Titan: The Final Final Season is on its way soon.

(CrunchyrollAnimeLabWakanimAnime on DemandShahiid AnimeFunimation)

Wonder Egg Priority #11 – After Rika also reaches the end of her fight and has her familiar torn away from her, Ai goes looking for more eggs, but instead finds Ura-Acca in a mood to talk about what’s going on. It doesn’t explain everything about the warriors of Love and Death, but it does fill in the mysterious Frill and why the Accas are so interested in teenage suicides.

The really big revelation here is that this isn’t a story talking about real-life suicide in fantasy metaphors, it’s a fantasy in which there is a specific threat manifesting as extra suicides. Frill is finding her way into the minds of girls and adding “the temptation of death”, as the Accas put it. She does this out of jealousy at first, and now… just insanity?

Let it be acknowledged that which the Accas are smart guys with many positive traits, such as not being attracted to girls young enough to be their daughters, they are absolutely horrible parents to Frill. They create a simulacrum of a teenage girl, never consider the effect of her having no chance to socialize with anyone but them, and when she commits murder, they tell her she’s just a machine but they decide to lock her in with one of her biggest fears rather than turning her off.

And speaking of awful dudes, we still don’t know how Mr. Sawaki fits into this. If he does. I’m starting to think that maybe he’s just a random creep who has nothing to do with Plati.


Re:ZERO -Starting Life in Another World- #49 – It’s snowing in the Sanctuary again, which turns out to be because Roswaal keeps casting a spell to make it happen. As his house burns down, Subaru is busy trying to save one more person, busting through every door until he is trapped in Beatrice’s library with her, giving her the choice to either get over herself and rescue him or die listening to him refuse to shut up.

Though Subaru’s motives turn out not to be entirely pure. Beatrice is needed to combat the next threat to the Sanctuary. The snow once again heralds the arrival of a zillion carnivorous bunnies who need to be driven off before they can eat everyone no longer protected by the barrier. Who cares what the weather says, you know what season it is now? It’s rabbit season.

Even with his book gone, Roswaal is still trying to carry out his instructions. He was supposed to bring the snow, and he did, and no doubt he’s memorized a few other things it said he needed to do. What exactly is he up to now with Ram, though? It seems to involve her amputated horn, but I’m betting he isn’t healing her just out of the goodness of his heart.

(CrunchyrollAnimate Gamerbilibili)

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