Posted on 30 December 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai no Yume wo Minai

It’s hard to believe that I so easily forgot that this series was written by the same person who wrote the The Pet Girl of Sakurasou but these last few episodes really gave me a solemn reminder of that. The Sakurasou series had a pendant for serious melodramatic antics and while I did appreciate the series putting forth the solid truth that hard work does not trump talent, I found the characters to be too emotionally unstable to truly care for. Bunny girl doesn’t quite fall down that far but we do have moments of rather forced dramatic reactions. I can understand Sakuto being devastated at the loss of someone he came to care for after two years but I can’t quite understand the compulsion to start screaming his head off and running around town the minute he leaves the room. I would at least think he would get out of earshot of his father and sister first.

We have two arcs to go over, that being the arc of two sisters of the main characters. Mai’s sisters arc was pretty weak as the cause behind her adolescence syndrome was blatantly obvious from the start, as was the solution. I do appreciate that the story itself goes to show that the sisters envy is pretty justified in that Mai can literally do everything that she can, only better. But more focused on the massive pressure that Mai has to deal with on a regular basis. I like the implication that the phenomena may have been caused by both sisters being envious of each other, Mai for her sisters lesser responsibility and her sister for Mai’s inherent talent. As well as the odd relationship sisters can have of not necessarily liking each other nor hating each other either. But overall the arc just felt like a small clock ticking down to when they just decide to resolve things and there was a serious lack of stakes due to how little either person cared about the situation. To Mai and Sakuto it was just another odd situation they have experienced before and everyone pretty much agreed that it would resolve itself given time. So much like Koga’s arc, the story was carried by the character interactions. But thank god this arc managed to defuse that situation of Mai not being allowed to go out with anyone by having her publicly confess to having a boyfriend and the staff backing her up. I was very worried about it being used as a plot point to split them up.

The last arc however definitely brought something interesting to the table. It started with the idea of rehabilitating Kaede so she could attend school again and I was somewhat dreading this girls inescapable arc for Kaede was certainly the weakest character of the whole show. In a show with at least fairly believable characters, Kaede was that typical anime imouto through and through who stuck out like a sore thumb sorely warning of a potential incest affection. But damn if her arc didn’t take her character and have it make a whole lot of sense. The author pulled a long con with this one and it paid off. The big reveal being that Kaede has dissociative amnesia due to her traumatic bullying she experienced and while I shake my head at the old amnesia trope at first, I found it fascinating when they established that the amnesic girl had a completely different personality from who Kaede was before. What broke down her family and wore her down was the constant expectation that she should be like the old Kaede when she simply wasn’t. Suddenly all those annoying anime quirks like her referring to herself in the third person make so much more sense and take on a more depressing angle. The big trouble of this arc wasn’t so much solving Kaedes amnesia but rather Sakuto’s moral dilemma that if his real sister comes back, then the Kaede he came to care for now will disappear. It’s a strong arc to end on and one that brings things back to the main character of the series but admitly the ending doesn’t quite give a satisfying conclusion to the series as a whole. This is remedied by the confirmation that a movie will continue the story but right now much like Made in Abyss, it feels the story just stopped rather than ended. With the particular loose end being the matter of the mysterious older Shouko though here she is used as a nice factor making Mai concerned over how she may never top Sakuto’s dependence on Shouko when he is truly lost.

As final thoughts I will say that out of everything this season, this was the show that surprised me by being better than I initially estimated and one that I looked forward to checking out each week. I would be remiss to say it was a show that blew me away as it is a very low key show with it’s premise but it is one I will remember. In a season of not much to look at and whatever standouts slowly disappointing as the continued this show was a constant good watch for me. Though reception from what I can see seems to be a bit mixed on it with some still touting it as light novel trash trying to put up pretense of being something better. I don’t really agree with that as I feel this show made more of an effort to be its own thing rather than a derivative of the ten billion light novels about faceless nobodies getting all the chicks and superpowers. At its worst it’s a Bakemongatari clone without headache inducing dialogue nor pretentious presentation and quite frankly that’s better than Bakemongatari to me.

Posted on 24 November 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai no Yume wo Minai

This was certainly an interesting arc and quite different from what I usually find from light novel affair. Generally in light novels the girl of the arc has her problems solved by our protagonist jumping in to either give a rousing pep talk or punch whatever is making their life hard. Thus leaving them “fixed” and with a love that will most certainly be unrequited. But this arc pretty much throws away all of that and instead we have a girl with a multifaceted problem that can’t be punched or talked down. Futaba’s problems as it were dealt with her own split in thinking with her dealing with the worry that with Sakuto and Yuuma having girlfriends that she will eventually be left behind, being confident in her body while at the same time hating it for the unwanted attention that it draws and a love for her best friend that she knows will be rejected outright if she ever conveyed her feelings.

The is no villain to defeat and Sakuto having a girlfriend means that he can’t just solve her problems with romance.(Kirito needs to take note of that) Nor is the end of this arc a definitive solution for Futaba’s problems as it’s less about changing herself and more about coming to terms that her problems are part of who she is. I really like Sakuto’s approach to this as he plays the role more of a support for Futaba, reminding her that she has people who care and will go out of their way for her as well as reassuring her that one does not necessarily require to love oneself.

For this to come from the most grounded of the cast is certainly a surprise as she shows that mentally she may not be as strong minded as her appearance may suggest. Well in spite of that she’s strong enough to speak her feelings clearly to her friend during a fireworks show, even subverting that cliche of not being able to hear a confession over fireworks by her repeating it. Got to say I was somewhat hoping that he would accept it even if it would make Futaba’s conclusion to her arc weaker. Maybe later down the line that girlfriend of his gets an arc that makes her less deplorable. I got to say that it certainly was surprising to see just how much Fubata was thrown off balance by someone on the internet starting to try and blackmail her over her twitter photos. it really showed just how dangerous things can be with playing around on the net and seeing her just get so scared that she couldn’t be alone afterwards. As a few last notes, I hate that they are pulling this thing with Mai not being allowed to date even if it is a realistic part of the industry. It’s good that Mai consulted Sakuto on it but it is a bit annoying if it leads to her screentime getting cut down.

Posted on 16 November 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai no Yume wo Minai

So we are on to the next arc and the next girl with adolence syndrome and while I give this series credit for breaking LN cliches, I feel like we could have the cast not be predominantly female. Well at least they are not all in love with the main character so I can give it a pass. Well unlike the cliffhanger last episode would suggest, the next girl is not Shoku but is instead our resident science girl, Futaba.(This is the second glasses girl I encountered recently who is named Futaba. Odd.) Our adolescent syndrome factor this time is that Futaba now has an identical clone whose going around living her life. The science explanation for this one happens to be quantum teleportation where in it seems that Futaba’s cell structure was duplicated and teleported somewhere else but this seems like a rather flimsy comparison to be blunt. The cause for her particular bout this time seems fairly obvious in that the past few episodes have established that she is madly in love with Sakuta’s friend but cannot make a move on him due to him having a girlfriend. Personally I think the guy should dump that trash he calls a girlfriend and get with science girl but perhaps this arc can give more development to his girlfriend so that I don’t want to punch her face in every time I hear her voice.

These two Futaba’s appear to be in the most part identical in both looks and personality. The defining difference her is that copy Futaba appears to be making an effort to pretty herself up a bit having switched to contacts and most noticeably, posting risque pictures to twitter. I admitly am having difficulty to understanding just why she is doing that but perhaps it’s some sort of confidence thing wherein she gets a thrill over people commenting on her looks.If I had to guess I would think that copy Futaba is the real one and has decided to take on a more aggressive stance to catching Kunimi’s attention but her mind is in two places about the idea which cause her to split in the first place.

Mai and Sakuto remain a pretty great couple with some excellent banter and I really like how their relationship is developing despite Mai not being the focus of the arc. But I really hope that small moment of her talking about her boyfriend to her producer doesn’t lead to what I think it might. I swear if I see some nonsense like her not being able to stay “Professional” due to having a boyfriend then I will have to strangle something. As a final note, the moment of ptsd Sakuto’s sister had when Mai’s phone rang really does leave a strong impression with how much her previous incident traumatized her. One moment is enough to show just why Sakuto threw his phone into the river. But of the love of god girl please stop with the incest jokes. I figured you aren’t serious but after long years of anime cliche I can never be 100% certain to rule out incest.

Posted on 9 November 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai no Yume wo Minai

Thus we hit the end of another arc and admit it wasn’t a particularly interesting one due to not much being at stake. The characters helped keep it from getting boring but the main conflict was obvious from the start and the solution even more so. So to get things in perspective, Koga and Sakato got stuck in a time loop due to Koga not being able to let go of her feelings after their fake relationship came to an end. Thus she pretended that she had no knowledge of the loop in order to delay the inevitable in a vain hope that maybe Sakuto might change his mind and not dump her ass for the main heroine. Sakuto was being unusually dense at the beginning of this arc but once things started looping he caught on fast as to what was really happening. This arc in particular falls flat in that when compared to the previous arc, it just comes across as low concern. Last arc had the danger of Mai literally fading from existence while this arc has the danger of…Koga falling out with her crappy superficial friends? Indeed the trigger to all this is Koga not wanting to lose friends who would drop her faster than a hot potato if she failed to answer a text message.(That makes the second girl who could get ostracised just for not answering a text message. Jesus life is stressful enough without having to micromanage your friends.)

I suppose we also have the predictable conclusion of her falling for Sakuto after playing pretend girlfriend so long which is a kind of consequence but it’s hard to truly feel sorry for her when she set herself up for failure in the first place. So this arcs ends with all of it getting rewound so it never happened and Koga learning to get over Sakuto while dropping her superficial friends for real ones. I can’t be the only one here who feels like this girl did nothing but waste everyone’s time, well at least the viewers time. Besides her addition to the cast I don’t think this arc added much of anything and we could have started from this episode two episodes ago without much having been lost. It really is thanks to Sakuto that this arc didn’t bore me as his interactions with the other members of the cast is still gold. Really I actually like this cast quite a bit so it made a less interesting arc still engaging because I genuinely cared about the characters on screen.

I have heard people argue about the superficiality of the supernatural elements with Science girl trying to explain them with scientific theory but I feel that the supernatural element was never meant to be that much of a focus but rather a narrative tool. I mean it’s literally a joke that the whole reason Sakuto could see that time was looping was due to him and her kicking each others butts in the first arc. Honestly as I mentioned in my Erased posts, you have two ways to go about this narrative. Either you go full Primer and spend a large amount of time fleshing out the mechanics of it(Though at the end of primer I still have no goddamn idea how the hell the time travel worked.) or you just hand wave it off. Though this series puts forth theory in an attempt to explain that mainly seems to be just a method of contextualizing the phenomena other than actually explain it. After all Laplace’s Demon isn’t really what’s going on here as Koga isn’t predicting the future, but rather rewinding it. The only real problem I see here is that they seemed to suggest that Koga has a degree of control over the power at the end despite them openly saying that she does so subconsciously. The way in which Koga rewinded time back to the first day doesn’t seem like a subconscious decision but rather a purposeful one. And does she still have this power? I don’t think it was ever made clear whether puberty syndrome stops when said girls problem is fixed as his sister still does seem to be under the effects of it. Wouldn’t this mean that Koga has the power to rewind time whenever she wishes? For that could really mess up the stakes for future arcs. Anyway it seems we are not down with time travel foolery just yet as Sakuto seems to have encountered the girl who helped his sister and him while also being his first love. Yet she appears to be younger than him and doesn’t recall him at all. Some Haruhi vibes are afoot here.

Posted on 27 October 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai no Yume wo Minai

We are at the start of a new arc and thankfully Mai hasn’t been tossed aside like a used napkin with events from the previously arc leading to her and the main pretty much establishing a relationship. I say pretty much cause they agreed to go out twice so really it’s just a matter of our main making sure they arc ends with them officially going out. Sadly the topic of this arc being Laplace’s Demon, sadly the story has taken one of the most boring and routine routes of representing it. Ladies and gentlemen, it’s a time loop. What could have been a decently original premise is unfortunately ruined by the fact that time loops have become rather common in current anime with me being able to name about five anime with time loops off the top of my head. (Sunday without god, Steins;Gate, Re;Zero, Haruhi and that magical girl anime you all know about.) It’s sad that with all the inventive ways they could have used the concept that this just feels uninspired as well as just not that interesting. The subject this time is that the girl that got her ass kicked somehow resets the day any time this boy confesses to her due to some thing with her friend liking the same guy.

Funny enough the time loop is broken effortlessly much to Sakutos despair as the loop ended in the worst possible way for him so he was counting on redoing it. The bad news is that the girl is pushing Sakuto to pretend to be her boyfriend to fend off the other guy and Sakuto doesn’t really have a choice because otherwise they could get stuck in another time loop. It’s particularly aggravating to have something get in the way of Sakuto and Mai when both are making good progress and here’s this girl barging in trying to steal the main heroine role. The saving grace here is that the character interactions are really fun and I don’t know what changed but the banter works a lot better than the previous arc. I also like that one of the girls I previously thought would be a future harem member for Sakuto actually is in love with Sakuto’s best friend. So I say his friend should just dump the obnoxious girl from the first episode and get together with kinky science girl.

The plot arc is a weak one but i admit to really warming up to the characters with Sakuto proving to still be a pretty fantastic lead. But props to Mai as well when she had a typical misunderstanding moment with walking in on Sakuto at the worst possible moment yet at episodes end she walks straight to his house to get an explanation of the situation. I was thinking there was going to be a long painful stretch with Mai acting cold to him over that so I greatly appreciate the girl cutting though the rom com nonsense and just getting to the heart of the matter.

Posted on 18 October 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai no Yume wo Minai

This show has certainly been like a Monogatari lite with it’s banter between its two leads and so far it has proven to be a watchable affair. Episode 3 honestly felt like an ending to the entire series when it was just the ending of the first novel. I mean the main couple has gotten together, the supernatural problem is resolved and essentially any plot point brought up has been tied up. But it looks like this story is more of a episodic arc nature wherein each novel has its own self contained story instead of a overarching narrative. So I honestly fear that Mai may get left in the dust by later arcs and new girls only for the title of this anime to become as irrelevant as Index is to the very show that’s named after a Certain Magical Index. What makes for an interesting aspect though is that it appears these arcs are named and based on a Scientific theory. I am certain I am not the only one who groaned at seeing yet another explanation of Schrodinger’s cat. It’s a pity because the first episode just threw it out there without explaining it and that was fine because every anime fan has gotten a Schrodinger’s cat infodump at some point. But I guess we can’t leave anyone who can’t google behind as the second episode goes into it with more detail. However I will give credit in that at least here the theory is actually quite relevant and even necessary to understanding how to solve Mai’s problem as the solution dealt with the nature of observation. Meanwhile other anime just use the theory to make characters appear smart or weakly justify the existence of supernatural elements.

The theme seems to be continuing as well with the next arc looking to be based on Laplace’s Demon theory which in shorthand is a thought experiment stating that if a demon knew the location and velocity of every atom in the universe then they would be able to calculate what would happen in the past and future. So our next girl is likely going to be able to see into the past or future but this might be treated differently as these powers are normally connected to trauma of some kind. In Mai’s case this was connected to her feeling exploited and used by her mother and superstar status. Then when she went on hiatus from show business and went to an ordinary school, people unconsciously avoided her due to her superstar status. But because the atmosphere of the school had decided to pretend that Mai didn’t exist, she in turn literally became unobserved by everyone thus causing her existence to become invisible. The logic behind why she became invisible to people outside of school is a bit shaky what with Mai somehow taking the atmosphere of the school outside with her which caused it to effect the entire world it seems but well it’s supernatural so perhaps logic can be bent to accommodate it for drama’s sake. The solution to all this appears to be having Sakuto force the school to acknowledge Mai’s existence with his public confession which was an event so striking and memorable that people couldn’t possibly ignore her existence anymore. You could argue that the problem wasn’t really the school but rather Mai’s own mental state which could have been the entire cause of her issue in the first place. It’s possible that Mai wanted to subconsciously disappear from public eye and once she began to literally disappear, seen her fate as inevitable. Thus Sakuto’s confession blew away those feelings and gave her reason to want to be seen again.

So Lapace’s Demon, considering the context I would think it would involve a degree of inevitably with it likely being about the girl in question knowing that she would die soon but sees no real escape from it. Though that is rather cliche so perhaps it could be something like a girl so lost in past and future that she no longer can distinguish the present? Admittedly I am curious just what route this show could go with the concept but again I must stress that this girl should not overtake Mai as main heroine. There are far too many light novels which go the route of having a protagonist win the heart of a girl in a volume only for the girl to get thrown to the sidelines while a new one enters the spotlight causing the series to be a quest for the protagonist to collect a harem. I would like to think that Sakuto is better than those guys as he doesn’t seem to be as flimsy or oblivious as they are when it comes to relationships. Either way, so far this show is good and my only real complaints would be that while I enjoy the banter between the two leads, I feel they could be a bit more expressive as sometimes it can feel like a snarky back and forth between two kuuderes. Also it seems that for times sake quite a lot was cut out from the story from the manga and light novel which made certain scenes less impactful. I would say this show needs to develop it’s cast as well for these first few episodes focused on Sakuto and Mai exclusively while everyone else is just kinda there. The only exception being the science girl who is likely going to be our exposition device for various scientific theories. Besides that this show is a decent watch but it needs something a little more to let it excel.

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