Butlers x Battlers Episode 1 – Anime QandA Review

An Anime QandA review for Butlers x Battlers Episode 1.

What’s the show? Butlers x Battlers, Episode 1.

And what’s it about? Can we stop for a minute so I can just audibly groan about how bad of a title that is?

Uh, sure, go ahead. Like, seriously. In Japanese it’s called ‘Butlers: Chitose Momotose Monogatari’ which translates to the far superior title ‘Butlers: A Millennium Century Story’.

Sparkle sparkle!

Yeah I guess that is better… You guess? Butlers x Battlers makes it sound like some Victorian era butlers are fighting against the lower-middle class—which—now that I’ve said it sounds like a pretty funny idea for a show…

Right, well what’s this show about? Well based on the first episode and not the online plot synopsis, I couldn’t really tell you. The episode spends a lot of time introducing like a gajillion characters, mostly boys running the gamut from cute to hot and all variants between.

Still not sure what that entails in this show, but sure!

This is one of the show’s you’re watching because the wife wanted to watch it, yeah? Yes and no, I mean the official synopsis is actually kind of interesting, time travelling fighting butlers? Sounds silly enough to be interesting, and it is, for the most part. I mean we don’t get much fighting or time-travelling in this episode (in fact if you skip the ending credits you’ll miss a whole chunk of action that happens in a post-credit scene just FYI).

Intensity intensifies!

Well it does sound ‘interesting’ I’ll give it that, but what about the characters? They’re pretty good, I like the main guy, he’s got a sharp edge to his look and personality. Also the shorter cute boy out of the student council foursome, Aoba I think his name was, he made me laugh on a couple of occasions with the noises he makes and some line deliveries.

Isn’t he adorable!

So are you watching this ironically? I don’t know, I mean I don’t get the exact same ‘enjoyment’ that the irl waifu does from watching hot boys shoot each other intense looks and accidentally fall on each other while spying on others from bushes, I’m thoroughly amused by it though. Having said that the show is still interesting from a plot perspective, I want to see what happened to the main character’s missing sister and it’s not unpleasant to look at handsome anime boys, I just wish they’d even bothered to make any of the women attractive.

The middle one looks like something out of the Jinju Ito Collection.

Oh, how do you mean? Well I don’t want to say anything offensive because talking about gender and physical appearances and all that stuff can be a figurative minefield of problematic statements and hurt feelings. So I’ll preface this by simply saying I’m strictly talking about this show and not people in real life. But all the women have the same face shapes as the men and it just doesn’t work. Like I don’t know if that makes it cheaper/easier for the animators then having to give the few female characters on the show more rounded faces but it’s just not a good look. I don’t know, maybe I’m just spoiled by the unrealistic expectations cute girl anime have given me.

Sure sure.

Or maybe it’s deliberate so the girls watching the show don’t get jealous of the female characters in the show? And can focus on the boys looking good? I don’t know, that feels like another can of worms I don’t want to open, but feel free to land on that grenade should it explode in your face!

No, wait! I didn’t mean— Anime QandA apologises for the preceding comments.

Now when you say “come”?…

Ugh, so do you recommend the show? Sure why not! It may not be what I usually watch but I enjoyed myself while watching it, at least a lot more than that other show with boys doing sci-fi things I started this season. Oh and I almost forgot to mention I really dig the opening theme song, the vocalist reminds me of one of my favourite bands ‘Poets of the Fall’, even though they’re singing in different languages they sound very similar! That random asideaside I look forward to seeing where it goes!

Cool setting btw.

Kakuriyo -Bed & Breakfast For Spirits- Episode 1 – Anime QandA Review

An Anime QandA review for Kakuriyo -Bed & Breakfast For Spirits- Episode 1.

What’s the show? Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits Episode 1 (2018).

Uh-huh, and I take it that’s what it’s about? Well kinda, I mean if you wanna be simplistic about it. There’s layers here you see… our protagonist Aoi is a lonely 20-something woman who has the ability to see ayakashi (who are like spirits, except some are harmless and some are pretty bad). One one day while going about her daily life she is kidnapped by Ginji, some alpha douche oni (ogre demon) who declares his intention to marry Aoi!

Yup, that’s how courting goes in Japan, right?

That seems kinda sudden and also ~problematic~. Indeed, although he has reason to presume so as her grandfather, who raised her, incurred a substantial debt when visiting the spirit world and offered his granddaughter’s future hand in marriage to Ginji instead of paying his incurred debt.

What an asshole! Pretty much. And while Aoi loved and respected her grandfather she refuses to be ‘sold off’ like property and instead of accepting Ginji’s marriage demands she decides to work off her grandfather’s 100 million yen debt by working in the Inn instead!

“Ogres are like onions…”

Girl power! Sure, something like that…

What do you mean by that? Well I know this anime is directed towards a female audience but try as I might I don’t understand the appeal of this show at all… it’s kind of like our female protagonist is nothing but a commodity to be traded, and somehow women like this? Like… *sigh* I’m probably going to walk into a trap here but I need to draw a weird comparison so bare with me…

WHAT?! But how will I get my sandwiches?!

Go on then… So my irl waifu was totally into this show once we finished the first episode, and rather than probe to the reason why I let it go I mean I get it this show isn’t for me. But where I had a problem was how this possessive, arrogant, dominating demon Ginji is somehow seen as an attractive mate and prospect. I mean I totally got Johnny Depp vibes from this guy and I don’t mean ‘quirky movie goth Johnny Depp’ but rather ‘abusive, alcoholic in real life Johnny Depp’.

Sexy ogre… I mean, what?!

Okay, so I guess it’s not for you? It’s not even that. It’s just, uh, well you know…

really don’t know why you’re asking me? Women are as much a mystery to me as the meaning of life and how magnets work. I’m wrapping up this review now because I feel like there’s more to this show then meets the eye, after all it’s going to be a 26 episode season so fingers crossed it goes in a ways to explaining itself.

Right, so do you recommend this show? Not really, I mean it’s skirting around being something I outright hate and just remaining passable as it is, I guess we’ll see if future episodes decide to break out of their allotment in life as it were. Not to be reductive but I figure there’s a large portion of the female population who will enjoy this show a lot more than I did, and to them I say more power to you!

When his nail game is stronger than yours…

But? But, I just don’t get it, like I know this show’s kind of wants to be a reverse harem, what with the cute shape shifting Fox boy being the Jacob here, but let’s face it, this Bella will ultimately end up with the Edward, because this shit is obnoxiously predictable.

Oh god, did you just invoke ‘Twilight’!? Perhaps I did! And with good reason, because this show feels as annoying and predictable and obnoxious as that series did. I mean it’s generic, devoid of a defined female protagonist whose beset by a sudden influx of male suitors who fall into generic tropes that run the gamut of what women are ‘in to’.

Is that a euphemism?

Well clearly this show isn’t for you, are you going to keep watching? Damn right I am, it’s not everyday you get to rag on something so obnoxious. B–besides, even despite how bland she is I kinda like the female lead and want to follow her and hope she makes the right decision, even though I know he totally won’t and will end up with that possessive Johnny Depp wannabe! Don’t do it girl, go for the cute fox shape-shifing fox boy!

Mm-hm… So do you recommend the show? Those who are into cute girls doing cute things and ecchi and what not need not apply. I can’t even begin to say how far out of my comfort zone this show is! But there’s no doubt an audience for this kind of thing, I just can’t hope to speak for them with any authority or intent. If you like handsome and potentially problematic boys preying on an otherwise conscientious female then this is the show for you! Or maybe you just like imaging yourself at the center of a reverse harem?! Ain’t nothing wrong with that! Personally though I don’t think the show is worth my time, but simultaneously why not give something new a go! Recommended for… well you know who you are…

Dat view tho.

Ms. Koizumi Loves Ramen Noodles Episode 8 – 20 Question Anime Review (Spoilers)

A 20 Question Anime Review for Ms. Koizumi Loves Ramen Noodles Episode 8.

What’s the show? Ms Koizumi Loves Ramen Noodles, Episode 8.

Ah, another single episode review, huh? Too great to wait ‘til the end of the season to talk about it? Not quite, while I’m apparently the only person who actually really likes this show, the episode itself wasn’t a standout in terms of quality but rather it did something interesting worthy of a discussion.

Right, so let’s back up a bit and give some context, what’s the show about? It’s about high school girl Koizumi-san and her impossibly deep love, affection and dare I say all consuming obsession for ramen noodles. It’s also about Yu Osawa, and her impossibly deep love, affection and dare I say all consuming obsession for Koizumi-san.

So it’s a? Maybe a slice of life? I’m not sure; it’s not consistently funny enough that I would call it a comedy. And Yu’s infatuation with Koizumi is very one-sided, so it’s not a Yuri or Romance. I think it’s safe to just call it a food slice of life anime until it develops an actual concrete genre.

This show is so ‘gifable’ too bad the gif website wasn’t working for me.

So what’s happened on the show up until episode 8? Lots of food porn. Lots of girls eating food and getting hot and bothered about it.

Koizumi comes with her own snapchat filters. No pun intended.

Like Food Wars “hot and bothered”? Not quite, no clothes come flying off on this show, it’s very grounded, well save for Yu, who over the episodes we’ve seen progresses from school girl crush to almost stalker levels of obsession.

She asked this with all sincerity, that’s how obsessed Yu is with Koizumi she wants to literally become ramen in order to be eaten by Koizumi.

And how’s the show treat this behaviour? It’s a source of almost all of the shows jokes, which for some people might be a reason not to watch the show. Though in Yu’s favour, she’s never creepy about it, and she states her intentions to follow Koizumi from ramen store to ramen store. If Koizumi did ever feel threatened by Yu, she’d have no problem standing up for herself, and Yu would probably back off… probably… At the moment Koizumi doesn’t really acknowledge Yu’s presence, in fact she’s friendlier with Yu’s other two friends, which I think is an important bit of characterisation.

Who are they? Misa and Jun, popular fashion type girl and nerdy bookworm type girl respectively.

Misa, Jun, Koizumi and Yu.

So I think that gives us enough context about the show, what makes episode 8 particularly interesting? Well the first half of the episode plays out like pretty much every other episode does, Koizumi goes to a ramen place, one of the three girls ends up tagging along for whatever reason, Koizumi goes into a long spiel about whatever type of ramen they’re eating then the two girls eat said ramen while blushing and moaning. There’s always a bit of character development thrown in so it’s not just watching girls slurp noodles, but, well… yeah it’s almost entirely that every time.

Close up slurp action, for those who are into that kind of thing. Not that there’s anything wrong with that!

And the second half? Suddenly hot boys!

Me too.

Right, can’t say I saw that coming. Who are they? Well save for the dark-haired one on the right who’s Shu, Yu’s older brother, the others are all new characters. Shu appeared briefly at the start of Episode 6 and got entranced by Koizumi’s beauty as she passed him on the street. But having an entire half of an episode completely focused on four different characters, and male ones at that was so unexpected and genuinely refreshing. Within minutes their characters archetypes are established and you want to see more of them and hopefully have them interact with the four girls in future episodes.

Why do I feel like they’re about to start a boy band?

Four girls, four boys. Are we assuming the show is lining them up to be love interests? Maybe. I mean, I will admit a passing sadness for the idea of Koizumi and Yu not getting together, but if the show does go the whole romance route I wouldn’t be opposed. It’s just hard to think how a show that’s been so food-centric will suddenly pivot into another genre. Granted, the boys only talked about food too, so it’s not like I’m expecting a massive upheaval it’s just interesting to think where it will go.

And you’re not bothered about a bunch of as you put it “hot boys” appearing in your otherwise clear broth of cute girls. Well it’s not a ramen without meat!

*childish giggle*

You could have also said “noodles”. I could have also said noodles, yes, that would also have been correct and a sufficient innuendo for penis.

Thick and firm.

Thanks for explaining the joke. But really, why so okay with it, I’m just surprised as all? Well, at the risk of sounding shallow, the girls on this show aren’t that cute, I mean in comparison to other shows I’m watching, don’t get me wrong still cute in the context of this show, but those boys are hot.

“I’ll have what she’s having”

Should I be asking who is ‘best boy’ instead of ‘best girl’? Hahaha. Totally long fringe purple hair boy on the end, his voice is so deep.

I was kidding, but thanks. Should I be worried about you? It’s fine. I’m just excited something different is happening in this show. I was a bit worried it would go stale if it didn’t shake things up, so hopefully they continue with this!

If you were starting to feel like it could go stale why keep watching? Because I think it’s a good show, it could be nostalgia for when I visited Japan clouding my vision; I love seeing all the attention to detail in the ramen shops. It just gives me such a warm feeling watching this show, almost like all those bowls of ramen I ate over there.

“Itadakimasu!”

That’s fair enough. Plus it’s not like there haven’t been glimmers of hope for some more interesting plot developments. Yu cooks Ramen for Koizumi at her house in episode 3, Koizumi helps a little German girl who gets lost in episode 6 which reveals her softer side plus the aforementioned brief encounter with Yu’s brother. But this episode marks a paradigm shift into some real potential for drama, can you imagine how Yu would react if her brother started dating the object of her obsession!

There wasn’t much actual stalking in this episode as Yu was at the beach so this image was taken from the opening credits.

Drama indeed! So final recommendation? If you’ve already dropped this show this season, perhaps this will be enough to get you to come back? If not I totally understand, it’s a very niche show and I can understand why some people would get bored of it. Either way I’m happy that things are starting to progress towards something different and look forward to the remaining episodes!

Haikyu!! – 20 Question Anime Review

A 20 Question Anime Review for Haikyu!!

What’s the show? Haikyu!!

Hmm, two exclamation marks… does that mean this is the second season? No, it’s just, okay I don’t know why they decided to stylise this with two exclamation marks but unlike other anime that add another exclamation mark to denote and differentiate a second season from a first this is assuredly a first season.

‘Kay… So what’s it about? Men’s high school volleyball.

HaikyuGif5.gif

Right. And why are you watching it? Your interests tend to be of the ‘cute girl’ persuasion. I don’t know, it’s highly acclaimed or something…

Why do I get the feeling you’re reviewing this under duress? It’s not like that, well, not exactly. I do admit a passing curiosity for highly rated anime, even if they are literally at the opposite end of my interest spectrum.

You don’t like sport? I like going to the Dentist more than I like sport, I like family gatherings with racist old people more than I like sport, I like stubbing my toe in the middle of the night so hard I think I’ve died more than I like sport.

Okay, I get it you really don’t like sport. Good, just so you know where I stand on the subject.

Loud and clear. So I take it this is a negative review. Ehhhhh, no, actually. *whispers* the show’s actually pretty damn good.

HaikyuGif3

What’s this?! Shut up, I’m a deep and complex individual; I’m allowed to like things that I thought I wouldn’t.

No you’re not, you’re a pervert. So what gives? So like the writing in this show is really good, and it’s really funny and the characters are all unique and charming and charismatic in their own special way, plus it’s well animated…

HaikyuGif4

That’s great, you’re broadening your horizons! BUT I DON’T WANT TO LIKE IT!

My god, you’re such an insufferable child. Just accept it and move on. I think you underestimate how much I hate sport.

No, no, I get it. So are we going to actually go into any detail about the show? Volleyball. High school boys. Underdogs. Ambitions. Ego. Teamwork. Camaraderie. Trying your best. Training. Defeat. Victory. Fight! Fight! Fight!

HaikyuGif1

And the characters? Umm… Short ginger, good at fast… grumpy genius, team player need much. And the rest… bald and hyper… coachy mc coachface… grey haired one my irl waifu likes too much… blonde tall glasses… freckles mcgee… another short one and old young wuss brute… that’s all of them right?

This is really hurting you isn’t it? Please, I need my cute girls; all this testosterone is doing a number on my libido. Quick! Give me 50cc’s of ‘Yuru Yuri’, stat!

No! We’re seeing this through ‘til the end, whether it kills you. Rest assured it’s killing me, on my death certificate it will read ‘Cause of Death: Cute Girl Deprivation’.

What about the team’s manager, she’s a cute girl right? But a small refuge amidst an ocean of dick.

HaikyuGif6

Now now, no need to be crude. What say you in conclusion? Haikyu’s good, great at times even. It’s not for me, that is for damn sure, but regardless of that I would definitely recommend the show to almost anyone. Most of the match’s go on too long but that’s of virtue of it being a faithful manga adaptation, personally I would have preferred it be 20 instead of 25 episodes but I’m probably in the minority with that opinion. And even with those ‘flaws’ considered it’s still worth a watch, even for the most ardent sports hater. It may not be an ace but it sure isn’t a foul, 79 out of 100.

Now, was that so hard? Maybe we can incorporate more of these sport anime’s into your roster of reviews in the future! Quick! I need a fix of cute girls, stat! Pump them directly into my veins, I’ll take whatever you’ve got, I’ll even settle for the cheap shit, yeah that’s right Kemono Friends will tide me over ‘til I get some of the real stuff.

Or not… My god, this has got to be your worst review ever. That’s not a question by the way, that is a fact. Ah… mmm, cute girls take away the images of all those sweaty sport boys… yeah that’s the stuff right there…

HaikyuGif2