Version 5.4 ~ Haruhi gave rock and roll to you.

Dated 12 May 2020: Log Horizon isn't funny

Minori and Akatsuki
Minori and Akatsuki realize they are rivals.

I finished my re-watch of Log Horizon. It did not go as well as I was expecting. I remembered liking the series more in the past. Objectively, this is still true. I know this because I keep track of my ratings for individual anime episodes on a spreadsheet. (This was originally a joke, but then I kept doing it. See this, for example.) So I can technically quantify numerically specifically how much liked the series more in the past, even though I didn't score the second season very high to begin with. In any case, I liked the series less overall the second time around. That's not doing the upcoming third season any favors. There are two basic problems I have with the anime.

Lenessia and Crusty
You know you like it.

First, none of the jokes work for me. This includes the recurring gags involving Naotsugu and Akatsuki. There wasn't a reason to repeat them beyond the first episode. Then Tetora shows up in the second season. And fuuuck, Tetora is not amusing. None of those jokes work either. The other problem is the inverse relationship between the characters' reported ages and the maturity levels of their behavior. Well, at least that's the way it seems for the girls.

Nyanta and Serara
I seriously thought Serara was 12.

The worst offenders are Marielle (28), Henrietta (28), and Serara (16). Marielle is whiny and petulant, constantly throwing literal tantrums about the work she has to do. (She's sort of in charge.) Henrietta is obsessed with molesting Akatsuki and does so at every opportunity. Serara is the nekosexual girl who really, really, really likes Nyanta. All of these characters and their behavior are played for laughs. None of it is funny. On the other hand, Minori is only 14, and the princess who ends up saving her kingdom when the men in charge couldn't get their shit together is only 15. Presumably they'll be older during season three, though. Maybe they'll become less mature in keeping with the rest of the show.

Dated 21 April 2020: Something something DATABASE [or] re-watching Log Horizon

That collar would be so uncomfortable

Log Horizon is much, much better than typical isekai fare. However, as an anime, it's perhaps not as entertaining as people make it out to be. I suspect it's probably better as a book. This is my second time watching the anime, and I like it about the same now as I did originally, but there are definitely parts of it I find less interesting than others. There is a lot of info-dumping, for example, and there are a few arcs that I simply don't care about, such as kids learning the hard way how to be adventurers because nobody will listen to Minori.

I guess he's fine when he doesn't talk.

With regard to that particular arc, Log Horizon deliberately made the boys shounen-type dipshits in order to make Minori a more sympathetic character. I guess it's working, because Minori is the only member of that party I care about. I appreciate that Rudy has an actual character arc, but he was way too annoying in the beginning. It was unrecoverable. It also helped that Shiroe reached out to Minori instead of her brother when the two of them were slaves in an MMORPG sweatshop. I guess he liked her better, too.

Minori getting shit done.

The mentoring Shiroe provides to Minori, her shounen-type dipshit brother, and other characters does make Shiroe more likable. Most fans of the show point to Shiroe's various schemes and plans when identifying his attributes, but I think those are less important than his penchant for helping people. I mean, the craftiness is neat, too, but I think that aspect gets overstated when fans highlight the elements that differentiate Log Horizon from other isekai anime. The problem is you'll run up against a bunch of questions you're meant to ignore if you think too hard about how those plans of his work out. In comparison, despite being simple and straightforward, the mentoring thing remains compelling because other shows often try to prop up their protagonists by focusing on how great they are at everything. (For example, consider Kirito from Sword Art Online.) Conversely, Shiroe's whole shtick is that he makes other people better.

Henrietta and Akatsuki
Henrietta's relentless harassment is fine because they're both girls, right?

There are a lot of characters in Log Horizon, and I like most of the ones who are not shounen-type dipshits, but I could do without the jokes some of them are stuck with. For example, every gag involving Akatsuki. It's a shame, because I'd probably like Akatsuki quite a bit without them. She's at least a fan favorite even despite those tired jokes.

They definitely just wanted to dress up the princess in ridiculous clothes.

I do wish Log Horizon explored the NPCs more, though. I'm more interested in how they handle sharing their world with immortal superbeings. The show does address this to some degree, but still think it deserves more attention. Perhaps there is a stronger focus on this in the books, and I'll get my wish when season three starts in October. Well, if it starts in October. Just don't put all the attention on shounen-type dipshit NPCs, okay.

Dated 20 April 2014: Winter 2014 Season Summary

Hachiken's actually about to have his mom's home cooking for the first time in ages.

I feel as if I watched too many shows last season. However, there also isn't anything that I regret not dropping. Does that mean the winter 2014 season was particularly good or does it mean I'm not making very good use of my spare time? Maybe it's both. There were quite a few good shows, or at least okay shows with lots of good moments.


Dated 10 April 2014: Wake Up, Viewer! Mail

Shiho and Mayu
This one?

Omar writes:

I want to WUG the fuck out of that bitch from I-1 Club. The one who was a cunt to Mayu.

I'm afraid I don't actually know the names of anyone from I-1 Club. Maybe that's as intended, since they're all expendable drones contributing a small part to the larger collective identity. I do want to see I-1 Club and AKB0048 fight with mic sabers, though.

Dated 5 April 2014: Golden Time and Wake Up, Girls! share a common problem

The once and future center.

Both Golden Time and Wake Up, Girls! are good concepts with some flaws in their execution. For the most part, the two shows' flaws are not related, but there is one issue they both share: Neither Kaga Koko nor Shimada Mayu seem special enough.


Dated 29 March 2014: So much for my Pretty Cure rankings

Bomber Girls
There's a new sheriff in town.

Although mostly tongue-in-cheek, I've fastidiously maintained an ever-growing list of Pretty Cure rankings, both for the Cures themselves and for their civilian personae. However, HappinessCharge Precure! pretty much puts an end to this practice. Both lists appear below, frozen in their likely final forms:

Black > White > Bright > Windy > Egret > (Michiru) > (Kaoru) > Bloom > Peach-han > Dream > Passion > Rouge > (Milky Rose) > Marine > Beauty > Heart (Overmana) > Berry > Pine > Aqua > Lemonade > Flower > Melody > Rhythm > Beat > Mint > March > (Shiny Luminous) > Sunny > Ace > Rosetta > Sword > Sunshine > Moonlight > Heart (Regularmana) > Diamond > Blossom > Happy > Fortune > (Ange) > Muse Kamen > Lovely > Echo > Peace > Princess > Candy > Shrimpy Muse > Empress.

Mai > Honoka > Nagisa > Saki > Michiru > Kaoru > Rin > Love > Setsuna > Detective Komachi > Erika > Reika > Malice > Kurumi > Kanade > Hibiki > Inori > Karen > Ellen > Miki > Alice > Makoto > Mana > Rikka > Regular Komachi > Urara > Hikari > Nao > Akane > Tsubomi > Nozomi > Kaoruko > Ayumi > Itsuki > Madoka > Miyuki > Aguri > Iona > Megumi > Yuko > Yayoi > Yuri > Himelda Window Cure Queen of the Blue Sky (Shirayuki Hime) > Ako.

The problem is HappinessCharge Precure! wasn't content with merely swelling the Pretty Cure ranks with Cure Fortune, Cure Princess, Cure Lovely, and Cure Honey. No, now there are Cures all around the world, presumably native to their respective territories (although possibly still Japanese teenage girls stationed overseas as a form of mahou shoujo force projection similar to how the United States stations its military globally).

The French Cure
Oh, it's a paintbrush, not a broom.

If you think I'm going to start ranking dozens of unnamed Cures each week just because they get a few seconds of screentime, you're out of your mind. I can at least tell you Cure Princess ranks pretty low, though. She's even less useful than Cure Blossom on a bad day.

Dated 20 March 2014: Seitokai Yakuindomo can go on as long as it has to

Tsuda, Hagimura, Shino, and Aria.
It's not easy being Tsuda.

Seitokai Yakuindomo sort of reminds me of Detective Conan because both shows are reliably good with very infrequent bad episodes easily offset by occasional great ones. This is quite an achievement for SYD since it relies very heavily on the same battery of jokes. I guess it's similar to Detective Conan in this respect also, since Detective Conan relies very heavily on variations of its formulaic structure.

Did you think Dreamcast or Debian?

I think I could happily watch Seitokai Yakuindomo indefinitely the way I can watch Detective Conan indefinitely simply because the characters are so pleasant and the anime itself so good looking. I suspect after a hundred or so episodes, I'd prefer half-length episodes, though. There are still a great many SYD four-panel comics that I haven't yet read, but they don't have that certain GoHands flair or backing vocals by Triple Booking. It's not the same.

Dated 5 March 2014: I guess it's better than blowing bathroom particles against your damp hands

I actually wanted to use a screenshot of Kasuga Ayumu, but this is more timely.

I don't actually know if this practice exists in real life, or if it's yet another otaku myth, but anime girls are frequently depicted clutching handkerchiefs in their mouths as they wash their hands at school. Presumably, paper towels and air dryers are unavailable in third-world countries. But at what time during the process do these characters transfer their handkerchiefs from their pockets to their mouths?

I bet Yukine never washes his hands. NEVER.

I assume they are washing their hands after using the toilet, but do they clutch their handkerchiefs in their mouths before conducting that bit of business, or do they retrieve them with unwashed hands, place them in their mouths, and then proceed to wash and dry their hands? It seems to me that from a strictly chain-of-cooties perspective, the former is arguably a more sanitary practice than the latter, although neither is really ideal. Anyway, if you know the answer to this, send me a telegram, but not if you're obtuse enough to think I really believe Japan is a third-world country.

Update: Ani-Nouto suggests...

I see two possibilities:

  • Reach into pocket, grab folded kerchief so that the last fold goes against the palm, then with a deft movement unfold it and grab the now exposed center with your mouth
  • Pee on one hand, use it to touch handles and flush, reserve the other strictly for this

Imma gonna assume he meant "with one hand."