Posted by SuperWooper on 11 October 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Release the Spyce

Short Synopsis: A girl is scouted to join a bunch of high school girls being ninjas.

Aidan’s review:
The opening scene of this episode had me feeling like I was in the 90’s again watching a really crappy version of the matrix. This show is certainly trying hard to look cool but so hard that it just comes across as really dumb. The science behind everything here is ridiculous and I am not sure if the writing itself is aware of it. I mean the “Spyce” in the shows title appears to be a drug based on the whole “Humans only use 10% of their brains” myth and the main character seems to have a supernatural sense of sight and smell but even more ludicious, the ability to diagnose physical and mental problems by licking people. This show seems to be targeting two conflicting demographics, those who want cute girls doing cute things and those who want action. The two are obviously at odds and it doesn’t help that the action is just painfully trying too hard. This show desperately wants you to think it’s cool and just as expected comes off as rather lame instead. I am not sure about a show which glorifies drug use either as this spyce turns girls into superheroes with seemly no negative consequences. This is just a really dumb poorly written show.
Potential: 0%

Mario’s review:
Release the Spyce is pretty much what you expected, a nonsensical fun ride. This episode spends its amount of time into two subplots: cute girls having their normal everyday school life and cute girls moonlighting as spies – or more as ninja, or more as heroes in cute outfits. Some details might stretch its credulity a little (ninja frog? Hell, yeah! Licking to sense other person’s personality?), but to its credits it doesn’t take those seriously. I suppose the main character Momo embodies the first episode’s strengths and weaknesses so far. On the narrative level, her role works as she’s a qualified addition to the cast. Unlike other main helpless protagonists who usually get sucked to the case all by accident, Momo gets there all by her ability and her determination to fight crimes. Her hesitation when it comes to action, her inspiration comes from her late-police father, all work by that glance. On the negative side, she never feels like a real person to me. Her ability is nonsensical and there isn’t much subtext going on in this chick flicks. The cast fares much worse as for now they fall into archetypal roles, and the villains are clearly evil and maniac. It’s too simple and straightforward for its own good.
Potential: 40%


Ulysses: Jeanne d’Arc to Renkin no Kishi

Short Synopsis: A wannabe alchemist searches for a way to grant his childhood friend immortality.

Lenlo’s Review:
Ah, my first bamboozling of the season. It feels… bad. I went into this expecting something completely different than it turned out to be. Based on the description and some promo art, I was expecting some kind of historical epic during the Hundred Years’ War, maybe with some fantastical local elements ala Mahoutsukai no Yome thrown in there. Instead I get a high school harem series set in the 14th century, with a bunch of cliches that don’t belong there. I’ll be frank, I lost my interest when I saw 3 anime girl stereotypes in the same shot 1 minute in, all staring at our bland male leads empty seat. Color me disappointed and move on. There are better series in this season.
Potential: 0%

Wooper’s review:
How much longer will it be before the average Japanese animator loses all ability to draw walk cycles? If the premiere of Ulysses: Jeanne d’Arc too Long Title is anything to go by, it could happen before 2019 hits. This episode was chock-full of awkward and aborted motion, from sword fights that freeze at inappropriate times to characters that are supposed to be entering a room, but appear instead to be marching in place. The low budget appearance is just what this story deserves, as its historical setting is squandered on a cookie cutter harem setup. There’s even some fetish baiting, with the most nervous of all the same-faced girls peeing herself because a bird startles her in the middle of a dark forest. Fear not, however, as our gentlemanly lead character proclaims that he’s got a little sister (of course he does), so he’s totally used to spontaneous urination. If you want to write a series this insultingly bad, why not just set it during the modern day? A quick Google search reveals that the link between the Hundred Years’ War and alchemy is tenuous at best, so you could have just made this another high school battle harem rather than dragging Joan of Arc’s name through the mud. There’s a time skip twist just before the credits, which is the only decent part of the episode, but it’s not worth the price of entry. Do yourself a lifelong favor and never, ever watch this show.
Potential: 0%


Anima Yell!

Short Synopsis: An excitable high school girl attempts to start a cheerleading club.

Lenlo’s Review:
Ah, the seasonal entry into “Cute Girls doing Cute Things”. This time that thing is Cheerleading, a traditional highschool activity. Anima Yell looks competent enough. The art isn’t bad, the animation is enough that for a few shots I was actually surprised with how the well the Cheerleading worked. Anima Yell even took the slow approach of gathering the club members and not just overloading us with everything all at once. Most of all though, it was actually kinda funny. It’s not my proudest moment, but I giggled at the “Chair” joke the first 2 times it came up, I’ll admit it. Basically, if you want a show you can sit back, relax, not have to think too deeply about the philosophical meaning of and just enjoy, you could do a lot worse than Anima Yell. Yeah, it’s not my cup of tea, but I’m the kind of asshole who enjoyed Ergo Proxy, and I can say Anima Yell is at the very least, competent in every way that matters.
Potential: 30%

Wooper’s review:
This is another high energy club anime in the vein of Anime-Gataris or Comic Girls, which should tell you everything you need to know. If you like pink-haired protagonists and would cite “irreversibly cheerful” as your mood of choice, Anima Yell was made just for you. The character designs won’t win any awards for originality, but they’re moe enough to make your teeth fall out. The animation isn’t exactly top shelf, but it’s competent, even for a series that revolves around a movement-heavy sport like cheerleading. The plot point of gathering five members to start a high school club won’t set the world on fire, but it’s a good jumping-off point for some decent character work, should the show be so inclined. One thing Anima Yell does better than a lot of its contemporaries is striking a balance between earnestness and clumsiness in its main character. When both of these traits are present in one person, they typically vie for dominance, when they should be harmonizing instead. This series takes the latter approach, which makes for a pleasant watching experience. Anima Yell’s lack of ambition and familiar template will discourage a lot of fans from picking it up (myself included), but it looks to be one of the year’s better entries in this genre.
Potential: 30%

One Response

  1. Avatar Amagi says:

    Almost sounds like Aidan hacked into my Trillian chat log and copy pasted everything I told my best friend about Release the Spyce.
    Guess it’s nice to know I am not the only one who felt that way.

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