Arranged Marriages Are Bad Unless The Guy Is Hot – ‘The Girl In Twilight’ – Episode 2 Review

Arranged Marriages Are Bad Unless The Guy Is Hot – An Anime QandA Review of ‘The Girl In Twilight’ Episode 2

What’s the show? The Girl In Twilight (Akanesasu Shōjo), Episode 2.

So what happens in this episode? I was so into this show last week, and this week… not so much!

Okay, that’s not exactly what I asked, but go on, what’s led to this change of heart? First and while I hate to bring it up, the animation/art quality has gone down a whole heck since the first episode, like I always expect a dip but this is what I expected the show to look like at Episode 10 not 2!

Oh yay, garbage animation quality and it’s only Episode 2, oh you spoil me show!

Fair enough, that’s a detriment. Anything else? I said last week that the ‘forced quirkiness of each of the characters’ was something I enjoyed about the show but now it just feels kind of stale—it’s almost feels like a different writer was responsible for this episode. Sure there’s still some cute character moments that made me smile, but a lot of it was always kind of awkward and lame.

Scathing! Anything else?! The plot of this episode (and the next since this episode doesn’t resolve it) is an ~interesting~ idea but I kinda hate how they’ve gone about executing it because it absolutely robs the central character of all of her ‘feminist’ leanings and genuine complaints about the ‘alternate reality’ she suddenly found herself in.

Bad law is bad.

Oh boy, “feminism” huh, this oughta be fun… explain what you mean? What’s this “alternate world” she’s in? So blonde girl Nana, she’s the one who had the ~boy crazy~ characteristic written to her. She finds herself in a parallel universe that diverged from an ‘event’ 10 years ago where Japan has mandated a law where all girls on their 17th birthday must be married off to a man. Its not said why but it’s safe to assume it’ll have something to do with Japan’s declining birth-rate. Anyway it’s quite possibly one of the most archaic and un-feminist things I’ve seen in an anime and kudos to the show, Nana says as much (though she says it’s “weird” and “gross” rather than dropping anything buzzworthy as the word ‘sexist’). And I was like, “yeah, you go girl, you show those backwards bastards!” and then she meets her soon-to-be fiancé. And it’s a hot guy, and not just any hot guy but a celebrity she has a crush on.

*douche chills intensify*

Well that’s lucky for her! Doesn’t change the fact that she’s still in a government mandated arranged marriage! And from then on she’s absolutely ~fine~ with the whole thing.

Wait, didn’t you say this is only part 1 of this particular story? Surely she’ll be brought round to the side of reason by her friends? Probably. In-fact, dare I say ~absolutely~ she will, it’s not like this show is just going to get rid of one of it’s characters that quick. But it’s just such an obnoxious and narrow-minded view of women that “oh girls would totally be fine with an arranged marriage as long as it’s with a hot guy she’s into”.

Derp.

But wouldn’t you? Wouldn’t I what?

Wouldn’t you be fine with an arranged marriage if it was to a celebrity you have a crush on? That’s different, I’m a man and men are idiots (and apparently too the men who wrote this show), besides there’s no celebrity I have a crush on, my crushes are all 2D nowadays. Makes things easier that way!

Uh-huh… So I’ve been meaning to bring this up but in your review of the first episode you compared this to critical darling and fan-favourite series of Winter 2018 anime ‘A Place Further Than The Universe’… I take it that ~opinion~ is now null and void? Pro-tip for the future, don’t listen to my opinions after a first episode because I don’t know what I’m talking about… unless it’s an ecchi anime like ‘How Not To Summon A Demon Lord’ I was write about that show! And I’ll be taking that win with me to the grave! Ahem…

Nice?

But this show? Will it correct itself next episode? Probably. But am I possibly too perturbed to care about this show going forward? That too. It almost seems like everything it did right last episode it did wrong in this one. Oh well.


Previous The Girl In Twilight Reviews:

Let The Parallel World Come To You – Episode 1 Review


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Let The Parallel World Come To You – ‘The Girl In Twilight’ – Episode 1 Review

Let The Parallel World Come To You – An Anime QandA Review of ‘The Girl In Twilight’ Episode 1

What’s the show? The Girl In Twilight (Akanesasu Shōjo), Episode 1.

‘The Girl In Twilight’ huh? Isn’t that Kristen Stewart? Wow, quality dad joke there… No, this anime has nothing to do with ‘Twilight’ or anything like it, damn it!

Fine, what’s it about then? Cute girls doing cryptic things.

Okay, that’s the short version what’s the ~slightly~ longer version? Well it’s about five high-school girls, Asuka, Yu, Mia, Nana and Chloe who all partake in a vaguely bizarre ritual to do with radio frequencies and cassette players and it’s all in the name of summoning ‘another world’.

Is she trying to ask the tree out on a date? (That’s an old reference I doubt most of you kids will get!)

Wait, how does one “summon another world”, don’t you usually travel to one? Well I don’t know but eventually they do find the right frequency thanks to a magic crystal and another plane of existence sort of ~appears~ around them. They are immediately beset upon by weird looking yellow bunny floofs who after provoked turn evil. It’s then when our main girl Asuka sees another girl who looks remarkably like her come forward to save them from the floofs who’ve transformed into giant snakes, a technically impressive 3D CGI battle takes place and the Asuka doppelganger is triumphant! She scolds them all for being in “this world” and sends them back, but before she can return herself passes out. Asuka being the nice girl that she is brings her back to her parents place to rest up.

They look strangely delicious, like they’re made out of marshmallow or something!

‘Kay that seems like a fair amount for a first episode— We’re not finished yet! After dinner and a bath Asuka gives her doppelganger the bed for the night and we learn that both Asuka’s have lost someone important—the same someone (presumably a little brother based on the photo and brief flashback we see). Doppel-Asuka leaves for her world early in the morning, but has accidentally left behind her locket that contains said information about lost-presumed-sibling.

Dead sibling trope slightly less overused than dead parent trope.

So that’s the plot of the episode, but is it any good, did you like it? I’ve always regretted not blogging week-to-week about ‘A Place Further Than The Universe’ when it aired in Winter of this year, because from the very first episode I knew it was something special. I’m not trying to retroactively gain praise for having noticed something early than most did about the aforementioned show but I’m ~kind of~ getting that feeling about this show and I’m not even sure why, except here it’s just to a more specific extent.

There’s a lot of ‘head-on’ shots in this episode. Don’t know if that specific cinematic technique means anything. Maybe to engender us with the protagonist? Or maybe it’s just easier to draw…

Okay and what’s all that supposed to mean? It means I think this is going to be one of the highlights of the Summer season and I’m calling it already but I also think it’s going to be a show that ~feels~ a bit to precocious for its own good for some. Like these are some quirky girls, and it’s all very deliberate, like we’ve got the aloof and quirky dreamer with a bit of a sad past, we’ve got the boy-crazy one, we’ve got the one who throws random French phrases in, we’ve got the old-school radio geek, we’ve got the more grumpy and skeptical one. Plus there’s things like Asuka’s fondness for Chikua snacks and the fact she can bribe her teacher with Miso flavoured soft-boiled eggs that her family makes to get out of trouble. It’s all stuff that’s thrown at you very quickly and very deliberately to endear you to these girls. And you know what? It absolutely works for me, I’m already down for more adventures in ‘dimension hopping’ or whatever it is they’re doing…

Cassette players? What year is this set in?

Does that mean you think it has the potential to be ~as good~ as ‘A Place Further Than The Universe’ since you made the comparison? It’ll be hard, but it’s possible! Also it kind of reminded me of ‘Caligula’ anime in bits too and, well, that’s less of a good comparison so hopefully it doesn’t end up like that show…

So I’ll count this as a recommendation then? If you like your cute anime high-school girls with a heaping side of action, mystery and ~dubious~ science then you’ll probably find something to like here! I thought it was a really fun, well-written and fast-paced first episode that promises a lot while keeping a bunch of unanswered questions and room to grow!

I mean if there’s a bath scene you can bet your ass I’m going to put a screencap of it in!

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