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Dated 4 June 2024: Unnamed Memory is a mess

Tinasha and Oscar
I'm disappointed the law of conservation of mass does not apply to cat-mode Tinasha.

Remember when I said, "I like Unnamed Memory even though it feels rushed"? Yeah, about that... Well, it definitely still feels rushed in ways that are absolutely to its detriment. Basically all of the plot beats in the anime seem to occur arbitrarily without being properly introduced or established in any sort of way that I should care about. I have to assume the books are not like this, but I don't know why the anime adaptation would choose to depict events this way. With only a few episodes left in the cours, it's unsalvageable.

Tinasha
I'm disappointed fan art does not dwell on the weird tan lines Tinasha should have.

In fact, I'm so unsatisfied with the Unnamed Memory anime that I have zero interest in reading the books even though they're all but guaranteed to be better. That doesn't matter anymore. To be clear, I had considered it initially. The series is complete and only six volumes long. Maybe I wouldn't end up liking it, but there was enough positive buzz about it that I was willing to read the first volume and see how it goes. Nope, not anymore. The anime isn't bad enough for me to drop it entirely this close to the end, but it is bad enough to kill any interest I might have in uncovering what potentially went wrong.

Dated 27 February 2024: Pretty Cure has gone to the dogs

Iroha and Komugi
The dog still likes being on a leash despite having human intelligence.

You might expect this post to be a lament about the apparent decision to eliminate fights from the current iteration of Pretty Cure. Through four episodes, there have been no blows or searing energy beams. I've complained in the past when the franchise has reduced its signature violent content, but I'm also cognizant that there have now been 20 solid years of Precure beatdowns, so I'm not hostile to exploring other approaches. Besides, this is but one of the ways Wonderful Precure! departs from established conventions.

Cure Friendy and Cure Wonderful
Go on, hug the shit out of it.

Specifically, the "pink" Cure and first to be called is a dog. And not an air-quotes dog the way Milky Rose is a rabbit, or Cure Beat is a cat, or Cure Wing is a bird. Cure Wonderful is an actual domesticated canine pet. (Well she at least also acquired a transitional human girl form at the same time.) She can also speak while in her original dog form now, too, although I discourage you from thinking too deeply about all the implications involved with a Cure who retains her original dog form and continues to do normal dog things, like go on walks. Does she still do other normal dog things? Like I said, we're probably best off not thinking about it. It's fine.

Mayu and Yuki
I think it's weird this cat's whiskers come out of her ears.

There's a cat, too, or will be one soon. So far, the only Cures are still the dog and her owner, but there's a cat and girl pair who are obviously due up next. There's also a rabbit and a boy who could potentially be mid-season additions as well, but I have not yet seen any confirmation that this is happening. Granted, I've not been looking either, but Pretty Cure as a franchise tends to be fairly poor at keeping future developments secret, and I'm adjacent to enough fans that I think I would have learned something by now if such plans were concrete.

Mayu
I like how you're such a downer.

So how is Wonderful Precure! itself as a series? I guess it's all right. It's still too early to tell, but I can at least say I'm not discouraged by the lack of gratuitous violence. Don't get me wrong, I love me some gratuitous mahou shoujo violence, but there's room for trying something different, even if that means I need to actively avoid wondering if Cure Cat will still poop in a box or if Cure Dog will still need to wear a cone of shame while in her human form after she's spayed.

Dated 9 May 2023: CATS: In re Yoru wa Neko to Issho S2 and Kawaisugi Crisis

Kyuruga
Is cat.

I am watching two shows this season about cats. The second season of Yoru wa Neko to Issho (Nights with a Cat) is basically the same as the first season. Some dude and his kid sister make unremarkable observations about a house cat's behavior. The episodes are only a minute or two long, but it's a pleasant little show about a cat doing cat-type things. I've watched 39 episodes so far, and it could probably run indefinitely because the source material (i.e., cats doing cat-type things) is essentially inexhaustible. I like it.

Yozora, Seiji, and Liza
Defeated.

On the other hand Kawaisugi Crisis (Too Cute Crisis) is sort of intense. The premise of this show involves alien invaders coming to Earth and discovering it is the only planet in the known universe that contains cute animals. Like, the cutest creature previously known to this spacefaring race is some doofy-looking thing that gets instantly blown out the competition by Earth's seemingly endless supply of cute animals. The series sort of only has one joke, but I haven't tired of it yet. It's basically the same sort of reaction gags that are more typical of food-related setups common to anime, only here it's aliens losing their minds about cats doing cat-type things. I dunno what to tell you, aliens. Brace yourselves. Cats are cute as fuck.

Dated 2 May 2023: I like the Megumin anime, but it's not a great show

Yunyun, Megumin, and Chomusuke
The presence of Chomusuke is also underexplained.

Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Bakuen wo! (Konosuba: An Explosion on This Wonderful World!) is a prequel about Megumin's magic school days before she met Kazuma and the rest of the regular Konosuba! cast. There is a lot of good stuff in it, and I enjoy watching it, but it's not really a great show on its own. Specifically, there doesn't seem to much of a narrative, and the various plot lines come across as sort of disjointed. Basically, random events happen, sometimes centering on side characters with no meaningful ties to Megumin, and it's all "fine," but it doesn't result in an especially satisfying anime.

Megumin
It's weird more Crimson Demons don't adhere to Megumin's views on Explosion Magic.

Now, I did say there's good stuff in Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Bakuen wo! that I like. Megumin herself is great. She's an overachiever in a society that not only sincerely values style over substance, it encourages its members to engage in the deepest chuuni bullshit. I love me some Megumin. However, the closest thing An Explosion on This Wonderful World! has to character arcs involve her relationship with the Yunyun. Within Konosuba! proper, Yunyun mostly serves as the punchline to cruel jokes about her lack of friends. However the deeper the prequel establishes Yunyun's ties with Megumin, the less funny her poor treatment becomes.

Yunyun
If you humanize Yunyun, we'll feel bad for her.

In fact, I'm starting to feel as if Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Bakuen wo! would have been better off pulling a bait-and-switch on the audience. Get all of us on board by making us think that it's going to be a Megumin anime, but then portray the entire series from Yunyun's point of view while minimizing their interactions. That's obviously not practical for a number of reasons, not least of which is because Explosion Magic Is Best Magic ~The Animation~ is an adaptation of a spin-off light novel and presumably adheres to established source material. I don't know how straightforward the adaptation is, but it would explain the structural issues I have with the anime if it turns out it's skipping beats from the books.

Dated 13 December 2022: These dog and cat anime will go on as long as they have to

Dog, Master, Cat, and Alien
She's honestly taking this pretty well.

Have I not mentioned either Sekai no Owari ni Shiba Inu to (Doomsday with My Dog) or Yoru wa Neko to Issho (Nights with a Cat) yet? Both anime have been running since the Summer 2022 season and I have no idea when they're expected to end. They're both shorts, so the episodes are only a few minutes long at the most, and that includes the credits.

Fuuta and Kyuruga
Is cat.

Doomsday with My Dog is about the last human on earth rolling around with her devoted dog. She's the last human, but at least she can talk to animals and there are various aliens and yokai who show up once in a while. Nights with a Cat is just a bunch of vignettes about a cat doing cat-type things that will feel familiar and relatable for anyone who has spent any amount of time around house cats at all.

Pii and and Kyuruga
Is cat.

There's not really anything outstanding about either series, but all the episodes are pleasant, and some of the gags are clever and funny. There are already more than two dozen Yoru wa Neko to Issho episodes, and more than 50 Sekai no Owari ni Shiba Inu episodes. I don't know how many cours these shows are going to run, but I am still interested in watching more.

Dated 14 June 2022: I'm starting to think KoiSeka will not end with a double suicide

Fudo and Desumi
Red Gelato and Shinigami Oujo are slacking off.

The gimmick behind Koi wa Sekai Seifuku no Ato de (Love After World Domination) is that Red Gelato, the main protagonist from a squad of heroes (think Power Rangers or Super Sentai) and Reaper Princess, one of the leaders of the villainous side, are secretly in love. The show is mostly about their struggles with romance while hiding their affair from the public and their respective teammates.

Red Gelato and Shinigami Oujo
I don't fully understand Desumi's battle costume.

This is not the first "daily lives of heroes and villains" thing I've encountered. Both Dokkoida?! and Sunred come to mind, for example. However, this is the first anime with an overtly Romeo and Juliet-esque spin on the premise that I've seen, although surely similar parodies must exist already in some form. Unfortunately, I'm not expecting the actual romance in KoiSeka to go anywhere. I'm already 10 episodes into the show as of this blog entry, so I'm doubtful there will be anything more to this series than light comedy.

Hellko
I do like Desumi's cat.

However, Koi wa Sekai Seifuku no Ato de doesn't really need to be much more than light comedy to succeed. The gags are amusing enough, and it seems the anime is reasonably popular this season. Consequently, barring any unexpectedly brilliant developments or an unfortunate collapse of some sort, I'm going to go ahead and suggest Love After World Domination is "fine" with occasionally good moments, but is not particularly remarkable otherwise.

Dated 12 August 2021: Sonny Boy is carrying the Summer 2021 anime season

Nagara, Mizuho, Tora, and Nozomi
Don't ask the cat. The cat won't tell you.

I decided to watch Sonny Boy because it's an original anime and the promotional art featured a girl holding a cat in a weird way. Then it turned out there wasn't really much else from the Summer 2021 anime season that interested me aside from some sequels and continuations. I don't like to characterize anime seasons as being bad, but this season is much less good than most of its predecessors.

Rajdhani
I can't believe so many of the boys are still wearing their ties.

Thankfully, Sonny Boy turned out to offer just the right amount of weirdness to keep me interested. I'm not sure if it will all come together at the end, but it's intriguing in the sort of way that should work if there's an actual planned conclusion. I'm at least confident it won't get dragged out for years like, uh, some American television shows I could name.

Cap and Asakaze
Asakaze got over this way faster than I would have.

After four episodes, I don't honestly know what's going on. Maybe today's episode will clear things up, but I'm not counting on it. On the plus side, I don't really feel the need for the series to explain what it's doing. Even if there aren't actually any clues I'm supposed to be stringing together, it's nice just to have something a little surreal every once in a while.

Nagara and Nozomi
I'm a big fan of lying down doing nothing, but ya gotta get up sometimes.

Really, the only genuine issue I have is that I'm approaching my limit with regard to Potato-kun being a fucking dishrag with no motivation, no interests or desires, and no charisma. I don't know why anime dudes have gotta always be this way (if they're not overly intense spazzes who shout all their lines), but it's not great. On the plus side, the girl who was holding a cat weird in the promo art is fantastic.

Dated 27 July 2021: I dropped Aquatope before I learned how to pronounce it

Fuuka
It's hard work, but at least you get to smell like fish all the time now.

I'm guessing Shiroi Suna no Aquatope (Aquatope of White Sand) is pronounced "aqua taupe," but I suppose it's possibly "aqua toe pay." In any case, the show is fine, and looks really nice, but I lost interest in it pretty much just as I did with Sakura Quest, another P.A. Works series about working girls (not those sorts of working girls, okay). Objectively, I guess there's nothing Aquatope really did wrong. (I guess it would have helped had I been invested in the childbirth sequence in some way.) It's just not really my sort of thing.

Shino
Shiho may or may not have kicked a giant mouse in the butt.

I admit I was more interested in Aquatope's nefarious internal idol politics (as I was with Wake Up, Girls!) than I was in failing-aquarium moé. Presumably, that aspect will re-appear at some point, since it's a two-cours series, but it's not enough to keep me watching it week-to-week, either. This does mean I'm currently down to five and two-thirds shows to watch this season. That's low enough that I watched all of last season's Odd Taxi in, like, 48 hours. It turns out it's really good. And it totally has nefarious internal idol politics. And how.