Posted on 1 May 2011 with categories: Gosick

Yes! This is more like it! The creators shut Avril up and focuses on the interesting parts: the story of Leviathan and Victorique. That’s what this series is great at, and this episode once again proves that Gosick can be excellent when it wants to.

Most of the mysteries of Gosick were either really obvious, or would require reasoning so far-fetched that the only way for Victorique to have been able to solve them was by having access to the script. This was actually different: Leviathan’s story has deep roots in Sauvure’s background, and instead of immediately knowing the answer, or waiting for a plot device to carry the final clue to solve the mystery, Victorique acquired the answer through careful study, and reading up on Leviathan’s background.

I really like how the creators linked the existence of alchemists to the gold rush in Africa and America, and how the alchemists used that kind of gold to create a legend around themselves through careful tricks. As this episode went on it did become pretty clear that Leviathan really had a large amount of gold to his possession, but even then his background as a former slave who couldn’t be silenced made a lot of impact.

Also, that build-up to Victorique’s father: it just keeps returning, and it’s getting more and more effective. It’s the red thread that connects all of the good arcs to each other. It’s still a big question mark of why such a huge tower is located in the back yard of a prestigious school and all, but at least this was made good use of when Victorique’s father played a key role in Leviathan’s demise.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 23 April 2011 with categories: Gosick

Aah, this arc is actually going to take up three episodes? Really, this could have easily been done in two! Alas, against my hopes Gosick didn’t completely ditch its lesser arcs for its second half. Such a shame.

It’s not like this arc is bad, but the main side character that it’s based around is just completely hopeless. The story of leviathan is quite interesting, and it’s good to finally see a bit more about the red haired guy who mostly likely will end up as the main villain, and yet most of this episode was about this really annoying love triangle that has no chance of working. Cecile does not belong in the spotlights. This arc did not give her any depth, it just shoehorned her into an even more cliched role as a hopeless love interest who is just there to stir up some tension between the lead couple. and the irony is that Kujou and Victorique never really needed this anyway: there’s enough tension between them already. They’re perfectly capable of developing themselves.

I noted previously that Gosick sucks in terms of telling its random stories. Leviathan really could have been the example to that rule, if this episode actually focused on him. The parts of this episode that focused on his story were actually quite good, but Cecile just took up way too much airtime in this episode. She dragged this arc out to three episodes for no reason whatsoever other than filling up 24 episodes.

This series is yet another one of those examples where it’s a shame that there can’t be 18-episoded series. Gosick is too long for 13 episodes and too short for 24. The result? A lot of pointless episodes and padding. Get back to the point you’re trying to make, dammit!
Rating: – (Disappointing)

Posted on 15 April 2011 with categories: Gosick

Gosick…. why the heck are you introducing a love triangle at this point? What’s the point of suddenly making one of the side characters (who has absolutely no chance whatsoever of getting him) fall in love with him. I mean, he’s bland enough already. Was he really the best choice for her? Also, Kujou: how the heck couldn’t you recognize Grevil with his hair down? It’s unfortunate that some of the problems that plagued the first half aren’t going to go away.

On the other hand though, the story about Leviathan was really good here, successfully combining mythology with fiction. Okay, so the way in which the place he lived just “happened” to be in the back yard of the main character is a bit… out there, but leaving that aside I like how this episode tried to include alchemy, while sending really big hints towards that philosopher’s stone being another red herring.

Victorique’s smirk when she went down the elevator was also priceless. The characters in Gosick nearly all have their ups and downs, but she is the only one who is consistently excellent.Cecile, the teacher, probably is the worst character so far: was there any point in this series in which she wasn’t incredibly whiny and stupid? As for the red haired guy… I’m not yet sold on him. The creators need to stop hinting at how he’s going to be a major bad guy ad actually show some things about him.
Rating: * (Good)

Posted on 9 April 2011 with categories: Gosick

Gosick, I applaud you. I really did not think that you had the guts to come with such an episode. Completely breaking away from your own formula takes courage, but I’m really glad that you did it. This episode was exactly what this show needed. It was an excellent way to close off the first half of this series.

When Kujou’s friend brought up the Mediterrean Sea, I really began to fear here. “Oh god no. Not another beach episode!” To my surprise however, Kujou completely abandoned this idea in favour of spending time with Victorique. The rest of this episode was exactly that: the two of them sitting out the beginning of the holidays. It was wonderfully quiet, and what’s more: it really allowed their characters to shine.

Kujou’s problem is that he sucks at solving mysteries, which is a really big problem when you’ve got a mystery series. This episode was entirely dedicated to the two lead characters however, and suddenly he shows that he can be a very good character here. This episode took a great opportunity to show about his past, ad tell a bit more about his sister and brothers.

I really have to beg the creators here: please: no more random stories. If there are fillers in the manga, just skip them. Random stories aren’t necessarily bad; there are enough series that are really good at them. Just Gosick isn’t one of them. Plus, this episode showed how good this series can be without its contrived mysteries. The right balance actually has the potential to give Gosick an excellent second half. It really needs to put in effort for that, though.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 1 April 2011 with categories: Gosick

Okay. Whoa.

To be honest, I was nearly ready to drop this show. I was originally planning to just stick with it for a few more episodes, until I figured out which spring series I wanted to blog. The diamond arc, along with its long hiatus caused this show to be underwhelming for more than a month, and I had pretty much lost my interest before I started watching this episode.

And suddenly this show comes with a very good backstory of Grevil. That really came out of nowhere. Most of this episode was still full of unlikable antics, but the story that it tried to tell got more impressive by the minute. It’s this episode that really convinced me: this show sucks at telling short stories. But it actually gets very good whenever it looks at its main storyline. Because of that, I’m hoping for the second half of this series to be entirely dedicated to plot-related stories, instead of just random ones that are only there to fill time.

And yeah. I admit: they had me. I did not think that this show was witty enough to come up with a good explanation of Grevil’s hair, and it did. I also now understand why all the manga readers were so vague when talking about the reason for his hair being like this, because that really is something you don’t want to get spoiled about.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 14 March 2011 with categories: Gosick

With this episode, I’m sure of it: Gosick should just have been 13 episodes long. It’s very ironic that out of all the series this season, the only one that goes beyond 13 episodes is the one who doesn’t need that many episodes, leaving series as Yumekui Merry as way too short. Seriously though, if the creators cut off all of the bad arcs and just compiled all of the good stuff into one season, it would have been a very good series.

The current arc really has no business in this series. It completely failed its purpose to give Hair Guy some depth. All we now know is that he feels pressured, but that could easily have been done within a minute inside a different arc. It really made no difference for the story of this arc whether his past was revealed or not.

The story again suffered from the stupid virus once more. I mean, when your house gets searched by the police, and you’ve just collected the most priceless artifact imaginable, not to mention that you’re selling off young children. Even if you’re completely confident that they won’t find anything, why the heck did the bad guys in this episode not try to move everything to a different location? I mean, with the huge crowd he invited, there is just one thing that needs to go wrong and everything is ruined.

Also, did Kujou just really try to drop a priceless jewel on the floor, to test whether or not it was made out of glass? I mean, it didn’t break, but what if that drop scratched it?

Also, it’s a shame to see that this is very possibly the worst animated Bones series in years. I mean, what was up with that action scene at the end? Three frames with speedlines and suddenly everyone was captured. That’s just lazy, but the rest of this episode also just looked too mundane. You can see that at least some budget went into it, but none of the drawings really felt inspired or particularly well animated.

The only merit of this arc was Victorique. Especially that nightmare at the end of the episode was excellent. I’ve said this before: this series sucks in terms of the small picture, but it has some pretty good stuff in the big picture. Just cut away these random mysteries. This show just isn’t good at them.
Rating: – (Disappointing)

Posted on 5 March 2011 with categories: Gosick

Dear police inspector. When someone comes across something he should not have seen, the bad guys will no doubt try their hardest to cover their mistakes up as thorough as possible by denying any sort of involvement. When examining testimonials like that, you should take every statement with a grain of salt. Not just the ones from the obnoxious kid you dislike.

Dear bad guys. When a random guy happens to stumble upon a priceless artifact that you have stolen, you really should get better security and you had better make damn sure that this guy does not have the chance to report EVERYTHING HE SAW to the police. I mean, you’re lucky that the inspector was a moron and all, so that these two stupid acts cancelled each other out.

I’m still not sure what’s up with these two, to be honest. I mean, I guess that the dumber the cast is, the smarter Victorique seems in comparison and all, but she doesn’t really need that. She’s a great character even without some morons around her, and I’d actually argue that if she were surrounded by other characters who at least had some common sense, she’d end up shining even brighter. I at first feared that she was too much of a tsundere, but the past few episodes have made her a very strange tsundere with some… interesting quirks. The previous arc also really did its job and gave her some depth and this episode too was pretty charming due to her catching a cold. Neat way to flesh her out some more.
Rating: * (Good)

Posted on 26 February 2011 with categories: Gosick

Oh, I have to admit that this show is shrewd. In the previous episode they introduced the most stereotypically evil characters for the story centred around Victorique’s background. Their personalities were so obviously out there , with a group of three random respect-less guys on one hand and this completely deranged maid on the others. I’ve been watching detective stories for so long that it totally didn’t occur to me that they could also be the culprits and that this was just a story in which everything was just as it seems. Har, har, very clever for this show to use an overused trope to its advantage. For once I can’t blame Victorique for refusing to explain how she found out about their identities.

This episode was well told, though. For once the two different murder mysteries in this arc proved to be quite effective red herrings for each other, and the atmosphere was actually quite excellent. Especially that bridge scene was well directed and shot and surprised me how I actually ended up caring for Kujou, of all people.

I also like how the creators wrote their stories into the European history. I mean, it’s not like Seyrun ever existed (or nothing with the same name at least), but this episode came with an entire background of how the village came to exist in the first place and where their ascendants came from. That actually worked very well here.

Oh, and the revelation that Cordellia was still alive only spiced things up even more at the end. This definitely was the best arc of Gosick so far. If it can keep this up, it’s actually going to become a pretty good series here. If not then it still has enough ways to become a total chore to sit through, though.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 19 February 2011 with categories: Gosick

This is why this series originally caught my attention: its creativity. This episode was full of it. It successfully created an entire small culture, with its own rituals, traits and habits. It created a wide variety of characters and a very imaginative back-story that for once actually kept me guessing, instead of just waiting for Victorique to grab the script again. Finally there’s some actual build-up in the way she comes to the answer!

It’s a shame that this series leaves so much to be desired in the character department. If it had compelling and deep characters it really would have been an interesting series here. Instead, the only interesting character in this series at this point is Victorique: the past two episodes gave a lot of depth to her with her background and her antics are also starting to get quite colorful. The rest of the cast though… they’re not portrayed well.

Most of the characters here suffered from bad acting and strange behaviors. Especially those three male guests suffered from this: they were stereotypical assholes. I know that this series is deliberately withholding their backgrounds, but in doing so it also forgets to flesh them out and give them decent personalities. We never even get to know who they are. The maid in this episode as well: I’m sure that she’s a nice girl and all, but this episode portrayed her as totally deranged. Oh, and we also have Kujou. I still can’t get over the fact that the lead character of a detective series has such a poor sense of observation. First there is a box with a piece of paper in it, and he says that nothing is in it. Then he promises to protect Victorique, only for her to run off while he’s dozing off. Or take the scene in which we get a surprisingly cheerful Victorique singing from out of nowhere… and he just remarks that she’s back to her usual self. When did we ever hear her sing so cheerfully like that!? (No offence to Victorique about that, by the way. It’s really good to see more sides of her).

And don’t get me wrong, though: this episode was wonderfully told. The atmosphere it built up was excellent and the dialogue blended in really well with the music. It was well paced and packed a number of great and hard hitting plot twists. It’s because of that that it’s such a shame that this show is a waste of this potential due to the really poor attention to detail. I’ve said this before: this show is great in the big picture, but not so great in the small picture.
Rating: * (Good)

Posted on 12 February 2011 with categories: Gosick

Best episode yet! Seriously, this episode was significantly better than anything we’ve seen of Gosick so far. The biggest reason was that second half, which finally took an in-depth look into Victorique’s character and her past. It’s an interesting backstory and it was well told, so let’s hope that it can keep this up.

Having said that, though, the quick mystery of this episode again was flawed. I mean, Kujo first doesn’t notice anything after a magician steals his textbooks (why would a magician want to steal some kid’s textbook, by the way; Ah well, he has fancy character designs, so we’re bound to see him back later as a major character), and yet when he tells his stories to Victorique he never fails to mention that one detail that can solve the crime. I mean, for a guy of his wit, I really doubt that he would have noticed the strange way in which the nun was sitting. Speaking of wit… you don’t need to dumb hair guy down even more. There were a ton of other ways he could have reacted for the creators to show that Victorique looks like her mother.

But after Victorique and Kujou started bickering with each other and got into a fight, this episode turned much better. It’s good to see that the creators are delving this early into the backgrounds of its main character, because she definitely needed that. We finally get an explanation of why she ended up in that tower. My one problem wit it is that… did we ever hear where Victorique’s mother is currently at? I mean, after the previous arc I’m a bit wary about this series not returning to fill up its missing plot holes…

Oh, and I looked up some of the episode staff for the upcoming episodes. Episode 07 and 08 are going to have two interesting storyboarders: episode 07 will have Matsuou Kou (the director of Kurenai and Red Garden), while episode 08 will have the storyboard done by the director of Eureka7. This can prove to be interesting.
Rating: * (Good)


Mail will not be published
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Nov 28. 2015 05:45 AM)
    It takes a true magnificence to propose such a grand question as: What dot life?!
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Nov 28. 2015 05:42 AM)
    @Kaiser: the show does vary in quality, but for the first season they generally crank up the insanity with every episode until a very remarkable season finale where Xavier faces his worst enemy.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Nov 28. 2015 05:40 AM)
    @Bam: Oh in symphogears case, I certainly laughed but I wasn’t supposed to.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Nov 28. 2015 05:39 AM)
    @Bam: While it didn’t always work, that first episode of renegade angel was amusing, I particularly liked the part where he went on about Aids being invented.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Nov 28. 2015 05:22 AM)
    and don’t be fooled by the simple graphics, the crudeness is completely intentional.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Nov 28. 2015 05:21 AM)
    @Kaiser: as far as Xavier goes I implore you to download and watch the first episode to get the gist of it. That show is the pinnacle of absurdist and meta humor. It’s strangely adored within the animation circles, getting very high praise from the industry, but it’s very dense and bizarre so people either love or hate it. If you’re anything like me it might become one of your most beloved shows.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Nov 28. 2015 05:17 AM)
    @kaiser: If Symphogear gets as bad as Valvrave then we’re talkin. Few companies make entertaining trash like Sunrise does.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Nov 28. 2015 04:54 AM)
    *At first I thought it would be like nanoha
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Nov 28. 2015 04:49 AM)
    I read a comment stating that season 3 of symphogear got so bad that it came off as along the lines of “worse than a Mari Okada melodrama”.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Nov 28. 2015 04:36 AM)
    @Bam: That renegade angel thing looks off the wall, haven’t seen an episode but my thoughts from looking up the show is “I’m not quite sure if this is a good/bad thing lol”

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