Fate/stay nightShokugeki no SoumamechaJapanese
Anime 1st episodes 2017: F
Including: Fate/Apocrypha, Fireball Humorous, Folktales from Japan, Food Wars! The Third Plate, Forest Fairy Five, Fox Spirit Matchmaker, Frame Arms Girl, Future Card Buddyfight X All Star Fight, Fuuka
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2017
Series: << Anime 1st episodes 2017 >>
Keywords: Fate/stay night, Shokugeki no Souma, anime, SF, fantasy, rubbish, mecha
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 9 first episodes
Website category: Anime 2017
Review date: 29 September 2018
Listed under "A": Fukumenkei Noise, aka. Anonymous Noise
It's a movie, but I've watched it anyway: Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Illya: Oath Under Snow (okay but almost no Prisma Illya)
It's a movie: Fairy Tail: Dragon Cry
It's a movie: Fate/stay night: Heaven's Feel I. presage flower
It's a movie: Free!: Timeless Medley - Kizuna
It's a movie: Free!: Timeless Medley - Yakusoku
It's an OVA: Free!: Take Your Marks
It's an OVA: Fate/Grand Order MOONLIGHT/LOSTROOM
It's an OVA: Fate/Grand Order x Himuro no Tenchi: 7-nin no Saikyou Ijin-hen
Fate Apocrypha
Season 1
Episodes: 25 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: yes
One-line summary: another magical/historical deathmatch
I've since "finished" it, giving up two-thirds of the way through because it was boring me rigid.
The "Fate/" universe runs on Holy Grail Wars. Human Masters and their magical Servants kill each other until everyone's dead. (Theoretically someone's supposed to win and get all their wishes granted by the Holy Grail, but I don't remember anyone ending up happy after a Fate/ series. "Everyone's dead" is about as good as it gets, really. Everyone fighting in a Holy Grail War is an idiot.)
This one's a bit different, though. Instead of being an all-comers slugfest, it's going to be a two-stage battle. Two teams of seven Master/Servant pairs will fight each other, then after that the survivors will kill each other as usual. THEY'RE ALL IDIOTS. We get lots of info-dumping in this episode. There's a Mage Association (Red team) and a Yggdmillenia family (Black team). The Holy Grail got stolen by Nazis, history isn't what happened in Fate/stay night, etc. Apparently people are fighting pseudo Holy Grail Wars all over the world, which sounds reasonable to me. Let them do it. Put them in a pit and put rocks on top.
Okay, I'm half-joking. I do think that the Holy Grail Wars are pretty silly and that no sane person would participate, but it makes for good anime. I've enjoyed plenty of Fate/, especially Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Illya. (That doesn't really count, but what the hell.) Here we have some baddies who charge up magical batteries by breeding artificial humans with magical circuits, called homunculi, and keeping them suspended in glass tanks. One of them's making a golem that will need a "core". I'm expecting someone nice and very unlucky to end up fulfilling that role. We also have heroes who summon a Servant from the Arthurian mythos and somehow end up with Mordred. Yow. Not a happy choice.
Yeah, I'll watch this. I'm looking forward to it.
Fireball Humorous
Series 3
Episodes: 28-30
3 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: cool-looking robots have a conversation
This appeared to be a mini-series of comedy shorts, so I was surprised when its visuals were fantastic. The original Fireball had also been a series of CGI shorts, so everything had already been built and was already sitting on someone's hard drive. It's about two robots in a gigantic high-tech castle. Drossel von Flugel is a gynoid with mega-hair who usually has a sexy hip tilt, while Gedachtnis is basically an arachnid JCB. You'd guess it was built for construction sites.
They have an unimportant conversation. That's it, really. It looks cool, but it's the kind of unfunny where you go "oh yes, that's meant to be comedy dialogue". Produced by The Walt Disney Company (Japan).
Folktales Japan
Folktales from Japan
Season 1
Episode 247
24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: as per the title
I quite like watching occasional episodes of this show, but I'd never follow it religiously. This is Season 1 (three tales per episode) rather than Season 2 (two tales per episode). As usual, the only voice actors are Akira Emoto and Yoneko Matsukane, with a combined age of about 200. (I exaggerate slightly, but for what it's worth I think that's cool.)
Three oni live on a mountain and make trouble. (One of them looks as if he was drawn by Steve Parkhouse.) One day, though, along comes a monk who's not frightened of them. The oni don't want cheeky humans wandering through their mountains, so they jump on him and clobber him... or at least that's what they try to do. It doesn't work. After lots of pummelling, they look up and see the monk placidly wandering off into the distance.
They try again and again, but always fail. He seems to be a magic monk. Eventually the oni give up and follow him instead, watching him doing his monk stuff. He prays. He tells them that he wants to help other people, which overloads their little oni brains because it doesn't fit into their worldviews. He makes a statue of Buddha. Eventually the oni are so impressed by the monk's altruistic efforts that they convert to Buddhism and become benevolent.
Years pass.
When we next see the monk, he's old and withered. He's going to die, to the dismay of the oni. "Let's die together!" is the suggestion, so the four old friends make a death pact. In the morning, the villagers find their corpses.
I can't see any possible downside to telling this story in a country that's infamous for its suicides.
This segment isn't animated at all, but the art's interestingly stylised. This show has crude but funky art. Anyway, this story starts with some boring stuff about some bloke discovering religion. He worships Kannon-sama. My attention drifted a bit. However I got focused again when our hero saw that a mountain, a landslide and/or a tsunami were about to flatten his village. What does he do? He prays.
To my surprise, this was more effective than it usually is. A giant appeared and held back the mountain with one hand. Nice! However everything gets crushed anyway and in the morning rescuers have to dig up our hero's family from where they'd been buried alive. Whoops.
Good news: this is a happy ending! Our hero saved the village. His family aren't dead. Bad news: our hero himself appears to have snuffed it and he's never seen again. Did he turn into that giant? I'm not sure, but at any rate that's where Handprint Mountain comes from.
You might have noticed that these stories aren't afraid to go a bit dark.
This is the most light-hearted of the three stories. Five friends go off on a mountain trip, having agreed some rules to stop their more argumentative members from fighting each other. (They do this a lot, apparently.) There's a financial forfeit and, worst case scenario, some head-shaving.
One of the group is a dick and they shave his head. In response he goes back to the village and lies to everyone, telling his friends' wives that they've been widowed and that they all have to shave their heads. Hahahaha, what larks! When his friends get home, there's a fight and so he shaves their heads too!
What the hell?
Food Wars! The Third Plate
Food Wars!: Shokugeki no Soma
Shokugeki no Soma
Season 3
Episodes: 38-49 (each 24 minutes)
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: overexcited mega-chefs
There's a thing in anime called a foodgasm. (It's not unknown elsewhere, but anime really goes for it.) Some food is so delicious that anyone who eats it will go into poetic raptures, drool and look dreamy, etc. (See also "beergasms".)
This show is like a parody of foodgasms. The creators basically took the idea and went for broke. Eating delicious food in this show will make your clothes explode off your body as you fondle your enormous breasts, etc. I actually quite like this. It's silly and sleazy, but that's funny. What's always kept me away is the rest of the show, because it's all about chefs and trainee chefs who take food very, very seriously. They live for food. They're so intense about cuisine that their foodgasms can make this harmless cooking show look like hentai. There's nothing wrong with that and I'm happy that they're enjoying their lives, but personally I've never been able to bring myself to care about any of it. Guys, it's just food. Chill out.
Anyway, this is the third season and our hero, Souma, is up against the Totsuki Elite Ten Council. They have great power and privileges, so of course Souma wants to join the club and will challenge their members to a cooking duel. His first foe is Kuga, who specialises in spicy Chinese food and has an army of assistants so well-trained that Souma calls them cyborgs.
It's good-humoured silliness. I'm sure I'd love this show if I cared about cooking duels. There's only one brief foodgasm this week, but there's a girl who jiggles while playing basketball and a bloke in an apron and nothing else. I don't watch this show, but I admire the fact that it's such glorious, proud nonsense.
Mori no Yousei Kinoko no Musume
Forest Fairy Five
Forest Fairies: Mushroom Girls
Mori no Yousei: Kinoko no Musume
Season 1
Episodes: 25 x 11 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: CGI fairies have conversations
"A beautiful nation, prospering since ancient times, Japan is now known as the Anime Kingdom. There are more than just humans living there; animes truly do exist in Japan. Past the Fairy Ring, to the world of fairies, live anime-chans. There's a Fairy Ring in your town, too. Here. And there. Even in Harajuku. Maybe even in the Ashigara mountains. By some chance, we'll open that door. And we might get to meet the anime-chans. This is the land where you get to meet anime-chans."
The episode gives us two introductions, then we meet three girls who look and move like cheap video game characters. The voice actresses actually manage to add a nice level of naturalism, but that's basically damage limitation when we're looking at CGI bobbing goblins. The fairies then meet up and watch live-action footage of the human world through a magic mirror, while having banal conversations about it. We learn what kind of sweets and fashion they like.
I don't really see the point of this show. It's just... uh, some stuff on a screen. It's the Japanese TV industry turning in its sleep. You don't need to watch it, obviously, although it's on Crunchyroll if you do.
Enmusubi no Youko chan
Fox Spirit Matchmaker
Enmusubi no Youko-chan
Season 1
Episodes: 24 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: unlikeable supernatural marriage-brokers
Oh. Another Chinese anime. Well, maybe it'll be okay.
Oh. It's not.
It's a mess and it's ghastly. The story's full of unlikeable characters and half-arsed backstory, which at one point appeared to be contradicting itself. Firstly, the cast. Here's our hero:
(a) food-crazy, to an obnoxious and stupid degree. He'll steal food and shovel it manically into his mouth, even if the girl who owns it is standing right there and he'd just been trying to woo her. Reprehensible, greedy and stupid!
(b) tries to trick a girl into marrying him by telling her that his Magical Marriage Spell is actually "a stone that will cure any wound".
(c) is being chased by a thousand-year-old secret society because their 500-year-old plan depends on him getting married to a certain youkai. Hang on. Does this mean he's 500 years old, or is this something I'm not meant to be thinking about?
(d) His reaction to a fox spirit girl being told "I will deprive you of the ability for human reincarnation" is to ignore this because it has nothing to do with him. Instead he steals candy.
(e) he'll burn with wrath if you break an item of his that was only worth a few dollars. (In fairness, though, there's a chance that this might have been meant as comedy.)
What makes him the hero, I hear you ask? Answer: he can fight and he's strong!
There's one likeable character here, a fox spirit called Suusu. However even that's up for debate, because her goal in life is to become a fox spirit like the one we meet at the start of the story, who steals everything from a boy and then tells Suusu to have an arranged marriage that Suusu doesn't want.
There's also a TV dating game show that offers contestants the following oh-so-romantic choice: MONEY OR GOOD LOOKS??? There's a Sand Girl who delivers lots of backstory that contradicts itself. (Maybe. That's how it seemed like at the time and I'm not going back to double-check.) Oh, and there's also a fat joke character.
It's bad enough to make you grumpy, but not in a trash-watching train wreck way. It hasn't even achieved the status of trash. Its story's an ugly mess, while the cast's so uninteresting that you might start wondering if you've fallen into some kind of culture gap. Avoid.
Frame Arms Girl
Season 1
Episodes: 12 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: anime based on toy line
Frame Arms Girl is a model kit line produced by Kotobukiya. They're basically Gundams, but girls. Based on the evidence of this anime, they also have skirts that only cover the top half of their backsides and so they could more accurately be called Walking Panty Shots. This is true even when they're wearing all their robot gear and having robot battles. There's a conversation about this after the closing credits:
"I can see your arse."
"It's a body suit."
"No, it's knickers, isn't it?"
For a while, though, I was on the point of continuing with the show. It's about a schoolgirl called Ao who starts receiving Frame Arms Girls in the post. They walk and talk. They're less than a foot high. Most of the episode is enjoyable slice-of-life stuff between Ao and her first robot girl (Gourai), who explains that she's an AS-equipped robot with the intelligence of a ten-year-old girl and as yet no comprehension of emotions. They look at Ao's childhood photos. Ao's pretty lazy, by the way, and tends to tune out whenever anything looks as if it's going to require even a tiny amount of effort.
However then other Frame Arms Girls showed up and there was a pointless battle. They don't hate each other. It's just robots being competitive or something, and I'm supposed to care about a battle scene between very very CGI panty shots, uh, robot girls. (The Frame Arms Girls are always CGI, by the way, not just when they're battling. This is faintly off-putting until you get used to it.)
No, I don't think so. I don't mind the show, though. I nearly continued, but I didn't feel like it.
Future Card Buddyfight X All Star Fight
Season 5 of Future Card Buddyfight
Episodes 53-60 (or 218-225)
24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: trading card battle anime
It's actually quite a watchable episode. It doesn't have any trading card battles, you see, stopping as two of our heroes are about to go head to head in the tournament they've just entered. Instead it's just a bunch of friends hanging out, although admittedly that's not very interesting either.
If you find yourself subjected to this episode and you've been strapped to an iron chair with your eyelids sewn open, I suggest hairwatching. This show has some splendid Anime Hair. The hero has a frozen blood splatter crab, but there's also an orange hatstand boy. They're pegs made of hair. You could hang coats on them. Our heroes' elderly mentor sports a white floaty cloud with a tail. The token girl is purple with doughnuts. Definitely the most impressive though is the frozen blue whirlpool that's four or five times the width of its host's head.
There are also Buddies, i.e. little friendly monsters. They talk about food. Buy a burger? Eat a pudding? Look at the huge pudding! Another Buddy eats two huge puddings! What about a duel over the last takoyaki? Eat pizza and ice cream, then complain to a takoyaki seller who's not adding the tako (octopus). All this is amiably watchable in a pointless way that assumes you already know and like these characters. I wasn't actually bored, but I wasn't a million miles away either. However there's a nice bit in Blood Splatter Crab being reunited with his first ever Buddy. They stay up late talking about old times.
The plot involves a tournament called GGG Cup. Would it be wrong of me to make bra size jokes? (Disappointingly I think there's a GG between cup sizes G and H, but no GGG.) Ah well. Everyone's got their eyes on GGG Cup. That's what they're all thinking about. Smaller cups just aren't the same.
Anyway, I don't hate this episode. The cast seem likeable, no one's psychotically gung-ho about FIGHT FIGHT BATTLE FIGHTING I MUST GET STRONGER!!!! and it seems like perfectly normal TV schedule filler. It's aimed at small boys, not me. That said, though, I'd still like to see all future card buddyfights in a coliseum with Emperor Nero giving a thumbs-down at the end. That would calm things down a bit.
Season 1
Episodes: 12 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: yes
One-line summary: boy meets eccentric girl
I've since finished it and... it's excellent.
Fuuka is the name of a girl. We first meet her as she hurtles into our hero (Yuu Haruna), knocks him down, accidentally shows her knickers and decides that he was photographing them on his phone. (He wasn't.) Obviously she smashes his phone and beats him up.
Yuu has just moved to Tokyo, is addicted to his smartphone and lives with his three sisters. (His parents are in America.) Fuuka doesn't have a phone, listens to CDs on her red headphones and will want to see films just because she likes the singer who did the theme song. Afterwards she'll show no interest in the film itself.
It's quite engaging. I enjoyed it and I decided early to keep watching the other episodes. There's a slightly silly bit where Yuu and Fuuka are waiting for each other and keep failing to meet, but that could be called characterisation. (Fuuka refuses to own a phone, while Yuu's overly absorbed in his.) Fuuka can behave appallingly, but she'll try to put things right if you explain everything properly and I ended up quite liking her. I'm happy to see where this goes.