Zero kara Hajimeru Mahou no Sho
Short Synopsis: A witch makes a pact with a human turned beast to work together to find a dangerous book.
I didn’t quite know what to make of this show when I looked at the source material and to be honest I still don’t quite know. However this was an interesting first episode and the two main characters are quite likeable. Maybe I should throw kudos to white Fox again as they certainly can improve on source material. Though it still breaks my heart that this has Zero Kara Hajimeru in the name and isn’t a second season of Re:Zero. It’s not related to Re:Zero at all by the way. Anyway we got a good setting and the chemistry between the two lead characters is solid. It is rather nice to have a light novel fantasy setting with no RPG elements, no high schools, no reincarnated protagonists and no harem from the looks of it.(Unless we are getting into bestiality territory.) A strong enjoyable start to the series though it’s up to the series of the series to prove if this is a good or a potentially great show as this episode serves more as a introduction of our protagonists and some exposition on the nature of magic and sorcery. Definity worth checking out and potentially a highlight of the season.
Mario: Well, I’ll be damned. Zero turns out to be quite enjoyable, much more than I had initially expected. In particular, there are two aspects from this show that I can get behind. First, The chemistry between the beastfallen and the witch is excellent. The beast is fleshed out considerably in this episode that we can see his struggles to just stay afloat towards this life where basically other races (human, witch) despite him, but he still comes off as his own person. The witch isn’t that developed yet, but still see how they argue about the soup, and more importantly how they have different method to bond their “contract”- you could tell how they’re different, yet still complement each other. I have a bit of Spice and Wolf vibe in this duo, for good reason. Second, the world building is intriguing so far, and I like how Zero attempts to tell the difference between magic and sorcery. Well, the book part is a bit farfetched so far but the strong elements of the show already raise it above other fantasy offerings this season. I will be back for more “beastfallen and witch” moments.
Short Synopsis: A girl that loves singing encounters two boys she was childhood friends with during a school concert.
I give credit that the music in this show is actually really good. But boy is this the kind of shoujo show that I just can’t bring myself to like. The main character is that chooky shoujo heroine that acts like she’s been sniffing cocaine for a week and for some reason the guys find this really endearing. People cry at the drop of a hat and emotions are just blown out of proportion to heighten the drama. I know that these two guys are going to be gunning for this Alice girl but she’s going to be too braindead to understand she’s being hit on. WIll they, won’t they? Don’t know, don’t care. I must make it clear that I have a pretty huge bias against these kinds of shoujo shows so my opinion should mean little to those that like shoujo anime like Nana. The music in this show is indeed quite good, I just can’t bring myself to like anything else in it.
Mario: Fukumenkei Noise is a show that is overloaded by music and romance, with mixed results. The music department is quite good. I don’t know who the girl’s voice casting is but she really has an impressive voice. The music composing is quite solid as well. So technically the music displayed here is a treasure for an anime show, but is it going well with the romance theme of this show? Not quite, really. I can’t get behind all those intimate feelings shared by their love of music, their connection through music. And the girl switches from Yuzu mode to Momo mode is really jarring like she was two different people. I don’t even know who she supposes to have deep connection with (guess this will be the main plot of this series) but nor do I care. The romance is on a wrong side here and the plot, already in this first episode, has some leaps of logic that make this story feel so forceful. How can the band be so heartless that they don’t even try to look for their band member, but recruit another girl to perform instead? In reality, not only this treatment gives bad reactions from band members, but also there’s no way in hell the new girl gonna remember any lyrics to perform. How can you say you know about music when you messed up the beginning (twice) and stopped in the middle of the song (twice). I understand with this show, the plot will take a backseat for more romance and music but if all you have are romance and music (and romance isn’t that compelling yet) then the show will tremble for the rest of its run.
Potential: 20% (I know. Another 20% – My magic number)
Shuumatsu Nani Shitemasuka? Isogashii Desuka? Sukutte Moratte Ii Desuka?
Short Synopsis: A man takes a job looking after humanoid weapons.
I have changed my mind on this show from my preview. Admittedly when I started watching I was ready to demiss this show outright as I found the novel to be far too boring. However things changed when the song “Scarborough Fair” played and it was truly magnificent. A beautiful rendition of the song that foreshadows that those two will have an impossible love. Overall this episode was alright. It set up the world and introduced the main character to the main cast. I am not that keen on the interactions, namely the troll maids gimmick of constantly talking about eating people but watching these interactions is certainly more interesting than reading them. A couple of things have changed my mind and made me think this show could be more interesting than I first thought. One is the hints that this story is geared more toward tragedy which is quite frankly one of my favorite genres. Another is that the SukaSuka(So far that’s the agreed upon abbreviation and thank god as that title is ridiculous.) novels are completed at 5 volumes. So it could be possible that this anime intends to cover the entirety of the story. Whether this is two cour or one cour is still up in the air but considering that the novels are quite slow paced they could possibly manage to cover all the source material in one cour. Lastly watching this story is much more interesting that reading it. I found the info dumping of the novel to be a bit much and character interaction were a lot more annoying. At a faster pace this story could be something but that really depends on what really is in store in the later parts.
Mario: I swear anime shows need to use more popular English songs, as in here the show uses the song “Scarborough Fair” for great effect, reminding me of that tender moments in The Graduate. About the show though, SukaSuka is your LN fantasy fix this season as so far, it’s an above-average product from its genres. You have a lot of typical LN fantasy elements: the medieval world that human is a nearly extinct race; the dialogue-heavy interactions that although don’t stand out, it never drags either. The main characters whose chemistry with each other and personalities are just about enough. And then, I know it’s mostly my own soft spot but the moments those girls appear I know I will follow this show. They lighten up the screen and the notion that they are “secret weapons” adds extra flavors to the plot. I also like the way the show hints (not feeding us) many of its world-details for us to pick up (like that other girl is a troll) but again I don’t like the meta-comment in the last sequence. Well, nearly the end of these first episode impressions run, I’m quite amused that we have a string of recommendable series at our hands. I don’t particularly think SukaSuka will become a special show but I believe we’ll have a good time watching this.