Version 5.4 ~ Haruhi gave rock and roll to you.

Dated 29 June 2021: I'd rather watch more Two Car than watch more Super Cub

Koguma, Shii, and Reiko
There was also a fair amount of anime tourism.

Super Cub is a great show. Or rather, Super Cub starts out as a great show, but is basically only all right towards the end of the anime. The reason for this is because Super Cub is at its best when it is about changing Koguma's life. Consequently, the best episodes are the ones where she learns more about the little motorcycle and discovers the new opportunities it provides her. However, the anime later settles into a more typical "girls really enjoy a specific thing" sort of show with various adventures. These episodes are still good, but don't convey quite the same sort of magic.

Shii, Reiko, and Koguma

This also means the later episodes of Super Cub invite comparisons with other girls-on-bikes anime, notably Bakuon!!, Minami Kamakura Koukou Joshi Jitensha-bu, and Two Car. In that regard, Super Cub isn't quite as compelling. This is partly because it's not just a Honda commercial in this environment, but straight-up Honda propaganda. It's fine, but I don't find it as interesting. The bigger problem is I also don't think Shii (the third girl) is interesting. Reiko, at least, is a nutjob. I do love me some nutjobs.

Yuri and Megumi
Go fast or stay home.

I'm inclined to believe Super Cub would be better as a much shorter series or as a collection of OVAs. I don't know how much more source material remains, but I'm ambivalent about it now. I'd rather watch a second season of Two Car. Objectively, it's admittedly not a better show, but it does have girls bitching each other out when they're supposed to be relying on each other as a team, and I enjoyed its parade of high-speed caricatures more than I enjoyed Shii lying in a freezing river waiting to die. P.S. Spoilers.

Dated 5 January 2021: Kamisama ni Natta Hi is not a good anime

Hina and Youta
I had to include a picture of these two because they're the main characters.

Despite a promising first episode, Kamisama ni Natta Hi (The Day I Became a God) turned out to be fairly awful in a number of areas, and likely disappointed even fans of Key's usual shtick. Critically, I felt nothing when The Big Sad Thing inevitably happened. This despite reports Maeda Jun intended for it to be the saddest anime ever. Surprising no one, I'm sure, Hina suffers debilitating mental degradation just as Potato-kun comes to realize how important she has become to him. Unfortunately, the way he conveys his emotions and the actions he takes for pretty much the entire rest of the anime are aggravating to watch. It's sort of baffling, even if you're already expecting this to happen to some degree.

For real, though, Kyouko had excellent hair.

Ultimately, it's entirely unrewarding. I can see how at least in theory Kamisama ni Natta Hi looked like it could succeed when viewed as an outline or synopsis (you know, assuming you're okay with infantalizing love interests), but it certainly fell apart somewhere between the initial pitch and the screen. It's not all bad, though. I genuinely enjoyed the mostly standalone episode where Violet Evergarden and her father come to grips with Dead Mom Subplot. That basically had all the, uh, Key elements of Maeda Jun's bullshit done right. And I liked the Mahjong Calvinball episode which had the sort of high-energy wackiness I remember from the Angel Beats! fishing episode. The Day I Became a God did continue to have some nice gags throughout its run, although the first episode probably had the most successful jokes. I'm still willing to watch the next Key anime, but I get the feeling I'll enjoy it a lot more if its a sports comedy of some sort instead of another romance involving mentally impaired girls.

Dated 19 May 2010: Angel Beats! episode seven is one part crap, one part awesome

Yuzuru and Kanade
Tenshi, your slip is showing.

Angel Beats! is fun to watch because when it's bad it's fun to mock. Somewhat unexpectedly, it can also be legitimately good at times. I'm referring to gags like the broom bit during the baseball episode and the entire second half of episode seven. But yeah, when Angel Beats! is bad, it's dog shit. [I feel obliged to offer a spoiler warning at this point, even though everything revealed about the first half of episode seven will be transparently obvious to anyone with the slightest familiarity with Jun Maeda, Key, or anime clichés in general.]

Yuzuru and his sister
Potato-kun kills his kid sister. Good job, guy.
Did you not watch Clannad? Kanon?

The first part of Angel Beats! 07 finally reveals Otonashi's back-story. Like the other previously revealed back-stories, it is a tale of woe and sorrow. It also happens to be a tale of idiotic melodrama. I don't know why Jun Maeda has a vendetta against snow. The sad-girls-in-snow motif has transcended its status as a mere trope and can now be considered a straight-up base anime stereotype. With that in mind, there couldn't possibly have been a single person watching Angel Beats! episode seven who thought it was a good idea for Otonashi to carry his sickly good-natured little sister (hospitalized for years due to some vague, undefined illness) out into the snow on his back on Christmas. Why not build an asbestos snowman while you're at it?

Otonashi trades his acceptance notice for a mapo tofu food coupon.

So, yeah, snow does to Otonashi's little sister what snow does to all of Jun Maeda's sickly girls. However, Otonashi finds new purpose in his life and strives to make something of himself so he can Protect Other People. Unfortunately for Otonashi, SNOW has different ideas. This brings us back to this present misery where the story makes a drastic change in tone and turns into a comedic fishing farce out of nowhere. Cue Operation Monster Stream, a "zetsubou no carnival."

Saitou, Kanade, and Yuzuru
There sure are a lot of Kanade petticoat shots in this episode.
[Spoilers: Petticoat shots are the new panty shots.]

Angel Beats! is getting a lot of mileage out of Tenshi Tachibana Kanade and her quiet deadpans. I haven't seen a fishing episode like this since Sky Girls. Like the Sky Girls fishing omakes, the second half of Angel Beats! 07 does not have any bearing on the plot as far as I can tell, but is instead merely an excuse for the characters to do goofy things for silly reasons. It works, as a matter of fact. Angel Beats! really needs a lot more of this sort of thing. Episode seven ends on a cliffhanger, so presumably the next episode will return to the main story and plot development. I'm not entirely sure that's a good thing.