Eromanga Sensei (SPOILERS)
YEAH, this show IS the worst kind of guilty-pleasure trash about underage girls!! But it was incredibly binge-worthy Episodes 1-11.
My fiance and I finished it together recently and it seemed to keep it’s pace all the way through. Watching a harem anime for the first time in years reminded me of all the little quirks of the genre, some of which I thoroughly enjoy and others not so much. At some point, if the other harem members don’t drop out of the picture I tend to develop antsy feelings towards the protagonist. You run into that School Days problem, where the main character is being wishy-washy and leading multiple girls on in a skeevy way. My fiance, Devon, actually noticed it earlier on before I did. In episodes 8 and 9 the other two female contenders for love interest confess their feelings to Masamune and lay their souls bare. Devon was acting frustrated, saying- “Where is this going? He needs to make it very clear that he’s not interested.” but to keep these characters relevant to the main protagonists and still romantically accessible in the narrative, they are never really given a straight forward answer. Masamune often admits that he’s in love with someone else, but he continues to give the other girls reasons to stick around and wait for him with a lot of unintentional flirting.
He admits that Muramasa’s love for his work makes him feel good and inspired to keep writing. He feels flattered that someone of her incredible talent and fame would be head over heels for him.
Elf Yamada shows Muramasa the place where her parents proposed and confides in him at length. She gives him her real name and hopes that when he decides to pop the question, he will take her to this specific place. It was easy for her to do this since she’d listened to Muramasa mention before that if he hadn’t already been interested in someone, he probably would’ve fallen in love with Elf 5 times over already. In all fairness, in terms of storytelling mechanics, Elf’s active tsundere role has functioned like the main love interest in everything but name thus far.
This was incredibly irritating for me to watch since I’d been hopelessly rooting for the tsundere lolita from the get go. Elf was initially set up as the energetic foil for the passive little sister, Sagiri. While Sagiri is incapable of moving the story forward in any meaningful way, (She’s a shrinking violet who can’t leave her room.) Elf is constantly driving Muramasa to meet personal milestones with his writing and she personally propels the anime forward into the tournament arc between the light novel authors. The competition between these three talented writers is what makes up the real meat of the series that keeps it from devolving into the tedious slice of life fluff.
The end of the series left off at a strange place with all the character’s feelings on the table and no one quite knows what to make of them yet. All of the girls had shyly introduced the idea of marriage to the main character, even the bookshop employee, jokingly. If another season was brought up than it would have to figure out a satisfying conclusion to each of these character’s story arcs.
Higurashi: When They Cry, Chapter 2
When I haven’t been watching anime and drawing, this is where my time has been getting funneled away. My buddy bought me the second chapter of the game last year and I’d been meaning to read it. However, the first chapter was such a creepy slow burn of mounting atmospheric horror that I was really slow to pick this next chapter up.
I’m glad I did though!! I forgot how wonderfully relaxing it is to click through a cheerful little visual novel with hilariously sadistic characters. You spend hours working your way through the fun daily antics of the high school club members before the music subsides, giving way to shrieking cicadas. I enjoy how Asian horror thrives off of associating an unsettling feeling with a particular noise. Higurashi uses very small cues to alert you to when the story is about to do a tonal 180. You are always giving fair warning for when the gory bits are about to set in. It does a wonderful job of priming you with little visual and audio cues. When the music is hemorrhaging waterphone chords the smallest changes in expression from the characters become very frightening during tense dialogues.
This game has been my favorite diversion from commission work lately. Though, I think I enjoy this sort of thing more than most because even hardcore fans would get really bored reading through the long 7 chapters that lead up to the scary bits. If you don’t enjoy high school shenanigans than this drag for you. Higurashi Chapter 2 spends far more time fleshing out the town of Hinamizawa and the lore behind its curse.
If you also remember anything from the twin arc of the anime adaptation, then there will be several surprises that you’ll see coming from a mile away. The first 5 segments use the mystery between the twins as a hook to keep your attention and interest.
I’m currently still working on finishing up this Pokemon commission from an old buddy I met at Express Scripts in Washington. He’s a super cool friend who bought a bunch of my anime before I moved to New York. This guy has been patiently waiting for me to finish for a few months now since the request was made before I went on a month long excursion to Thailand. This is the first big illustration that I’ve been commissioned in a really long time so I’m trying to seriously make this thing sparkle and show off what painting skills I have. Of course, drawing an underwater scene is something completely new to me and so I’m having to experiment quite a bit to get the water looking right.
I’m totally in love with this color pallet though. I can’t wait to get to the highlights and textures.
2 thoughts on “Thoughts from July 10th”
Good luck with the purple Pokemon shrimps!
THANKS!! I’ll need it. Don’t they make you hungry for Shrimp Linguini Alfredo??