Series are wrapping up. I’ve finished some older stuff. There’s a few things I forgot to say ages ago that I may as well say now. Miscellaneous stuff that needs an outlet but doesn’t deserve its own post. Stuff.
The final episode of Bakemonogatari did nothing to improve or lower my opinion of it. It’s still a great anime visually, and the last episode has some great visual flourishes, but it’s still an empty, hollow harem anime whose only concern is to be a throwaway wish-fulfillment series. The bit where Araragi basically says “Hanekawa is at fault for all of this by using the oddity to reveal her feelings” was pretty awkward, though.
With all of the other girls it seemed to be a matter of “the oddity was taking advantage of the girl and forcing her to act out dark thoughts they’d otherwise not want to enact.” With Hanekawa he’s basically claiming that she does want to express her jealousy and regret and just needed a means to do so. He could be saying that out of anger or frustration, especially since he’s the focal point of Hanekawa’s stress, but it’s still a little bastard-like of him to say something like that. Hanekawa’s the girl he’s closest to (He may love Senjougahara, but his friendship with Hanekawa comes off far more “natural” if you ask me.), yet she’s the one he seems the least willing to help. In fact, he seems to be turning the tables, trying to blame everything on her rather than the oddity.
That’s messed up, Araragi. Real fucking messed up. Even if you’re saying all of that because you’re about to die and aren’t quite thinking straight, it’s pretty messed up. Senjougahara’d rip you a new one if she heard you dissing Hanekawa like that.
That was the only thing really worth noting in the last episode. Shinobu comes out of nowhere, saves the day, everyone is happy. The End. Lackluster ending to a series I loved at first but slowly started to like less and less as it progressed. Like I said in an older post, had the series kept to the characters introduced in the first arc (Araragi, Senjougahara, Hanekawa, Meme, Shinobu) it could have been pretty damn awesome. Once it went from “strange anime about monsters possessing people” to “Damsel-in-Distress-of-the-Week,” it started to slowly descend into the realms of suck.
I’m fucking sick and tired of talking about how anime series have been disappointing me. First Angel Beats, then Durarara!, then Bakemonogatari. Let’s get to a series that I rather liked:
Yeah. Working! is better than all of those series. Hell, if you somehow made a Voltron-like gestalt of those three series (Celty: “And I’ll form the head… wait, nevermind.”), combining their total quality into one robo-series, Working! would still be a better series.
It’s far from being the greatest anime comedy of all time, but it was genuinely funny. That’s more than I can say about most series of this sort. Amass a group of weirdos, put them into a sitcom scenario, and let them loose. It never strayed from that formula, even when it delved into surprisingly well-crafted romantic shenanigans.
It definitely deserves another season. More so than Arakawa Under the Bridge.
That’s not to say that Arakawa is bad. Despite its flaws, I still like the series. It just didn’t do a good job of balancing its humorous side with its serious side. Funny stuff: Awesome. Serious stuff: heavy-handed and sappy. Know your strengths, Arakawa, and stick with them. You never saw the Cromartie High School gang get all melancholic and sentimental, did you? Do Sunred and Vamp try to reconcile their differences in a dead-serious manner? Those series are your kindred. Follow their lead come season two.
Best series of the year so far?
Cobra the Animation.
Yeah, it was last season. Bakemono was last SUMMER, so Cobra has every right to be here as Bakemono.
Cobra did ridiculous far better than Angel Beats. It delivered far more action and tension than Durarara!, and that’s taking into account the fact that Cobra is nigh-invincible and never loses. The episode where Cobra had to save that biker chick by shooting her in the forehead was far more romantic than Ric X Nino, Araragi X Senjougahara, and Takanashi X Megaton Punch Girl combined.
It also had JET PIRANHAS! Nothing trumps JET PIRANHAS!
But yeah, Cobra basically did what everything else has tried to do this year and did it better. Your only serious competition so far is Heroman and Tatami Galaxy. Tatami may wrest your place with its last episode, but as much as I like the series I don’t see that happening. And Heroman has lots of potential and plenty of episodes to pull it off. We’ll see how it goes. But for now, Cobra is tops.