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Yumekui Merry – 04

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「夢喰いメリー」 (Yumekui Merī)
“Dreameater Merry”

“Why do you care? Why do you want to help me? Why am I so important to you?” Why oh why indeed. I know, how about, “because if I don’t, there would be no story!” This works also, “because you’re a girl!” Or “because my powers happen to help your goal, so why can’t you just understand and stop being so effin’ tsundere?” Yeah. That works.

I wonder how much of a coincidence it is that Yamauchi Shigeyasu picked a show that had a plot structure eerily similar to Casshern Sins. Both shows follow an episodic structure, with each additional conflict pushing character development until the characters are ripe for the final arc. There’s no problem with this, but there is a problem with the impact of things. This episode tried to go for that, “fell in love with the monster” twist, showing the “our side of the story” for the Dream Demons, which typically comes a bit later. Too bad none of it really worked.

Do I care about the president who was just introduced now? No, and I don’t care for her love either. I first thought it was a problem with time, but twenty minutes is a universe of time to tell a story, even a deep and thought provoking one. Go see Pale Cocoon for proof. Now Chris, he’s much more interesting. He’s more ambiguous in his intentions than the previous demons, and he poses the thought, what is Merry actually doing when slapping the demons into oblivion? And why does she even possess such a power to do so for that matter? Does she really send them back, or is she just unknowingly destroying their existence? The morbid reality seems more fitting for the show.

So Rayman-kun got owned, got slapped while he was getting owned, and ended up with a smile. But that’s okay! President is happy still. What kind of shallow cliche “moral of the story” was that? The whole deal was just so.. simple. It felt more like the last ten minutes of a two episode arc. The emotions just didn’t work for me, and I believe it’s far more likely of a poor execution (or writing) than me not being easily “moved.”

There’s also Isana talking to that transfer student, who didn’t reveal anything except that, “you shouldn’t get to know me because I’m not worth your time.” And that she can disappear at train stations. Great, another one of those (she’s a filler character too). I dove into this series hoping for something pretty complex, but when you really take a look at it, it’s all just pseudo deep. Preaching about dreams and hopes, love, and the human condition? Why don’t you show me some scenes where I actually feel these values shine through the characters, rather than feeling like you plagiarized it out of a general psychology book, and then we’ll talk. The slow pacing doesn’t help either. Try harder next week Merry, because even your new-found maid fuku couldn’t save you today.

 

Preview

Yumekui Merry   04   Preview 01 Yumekui Merry   04   Preview 02 Yumekui Merry   04   Preview 03
January 29, 2011 at 1:14 am
46 comments »
  • January 29, 2011 at 1:20 amAlvord12

    Slow paced episode and I skipped the end fight because it seemed all to generic. Seems like this show is losing steam :(

  • January 29, 2011 at 1:29 amClick

    Sloooooooow pace. Kind of getting bored with this series =X

  • January 29, 2011 at 1:43 amviral

    I still enjoy it.

  • January 29, 2011 at 3:32 amPluvias

    This episode is very great

    • January 31, 2011 at 1:11 amSpacyRicochet

      Agreed. The episode was executed very well in my opinion. Both the pacing and the emotions.

  • January 29, 2011 at 4:21 amjingoi

    Yumeji: because I have a penis and you have……..

  • January 29, 2011 at 4:54 amabubu

    Man this show is so droped even its mama is like damn girlfirend this show shouldnt exist just like 90 percent of anime done in the last couple of years. no trolling around

  • January 29, 2011 at 5:02 amAndré

    I did like this episode. I don’t really analyze the plot and the characters… In fact, I don’t think this anime is trying to be deep or anything. It’s just following the basic concept of “monster of the day” and they try to do something different each episode to not be so repetitive (this time it was about the club president, for example), and that’s all. I don’t expect more than that for this show.

    • January 29, 2011 at 11:07 amKiiragi

      While your reasoning makes sense in other genres such as harems or comedies (even shounen), Merry is neither of those. It doesn’t have an excuse to “just be simple” and not attempt to make itself stand out from the crowd of other boy meets girl adventure series. Like Nayrael said, the novel is targeted towards the seinen demographic (the 17 to 30+ age category), and that’s why I expected something far more satisfying than what’s been shown up till now.

  • January 29, 2011 at 5:48 amNayrael

    The “Monster of the Day” is a common used device when a story of this style starts. No doubt later it will be more complex (seeing as it is targeted at Seinen audience that is quite likely to happen), tough I doubt the anime will ever animate the later parts of the story.

  • January 29, 2011 at 6:37 amShirt

    I really enjoyed the music they played throughout the episode. Especially in the beginning. That childlike curiosity that it aroused in me was very pleasing. :] Merry’s blushing was gorgeous too~ <3

    On a sidenote, I want to mention that I was not a big fan of today's review. I didn't take a liking to the negativity it gave off. One reason I love Divine's writing so much is because he's always leaving you with a positive feeling after the read (No matter how badly he thinks of the show). He's been doing it much longer obviously but that's something about his writing that I admire and also the reason I don't read other Anime blogs. Keep up the work, though. We appreciate it. :]

    • January 29, 2011 at 6:53 amPWAA.MEAP

      this.

      • January 29, 2011 at 8:39 amKing Dragun

        I second Shirt comment!

      • January 31, 2011 at 1:15 amSpacyRicochet

        Disagreeing with the review in general, I third Shirt’s comment about the review itself. There are plenty of ways to show your negative opinion without being overly negative.

    • January 29, 2011 at 12:07 pmKiiragi

      There’s so many ways I want to reply to this, but some are just too “negative.”
      I do understand your point, and while my harshness towards the show isn’t necessary to come out in writing no matter how true I hold them, damned if I don’t because they’re my own opinions. This episode just called for it in my mind, and I didn’t feel like holding back this time (and you didn’t even see the first draft).
      Also, in your negative critique, I didn’t see any positive ones. You basically told me, “Stop doing this, this is someone that’s doing it better, be more like that person.” Yeah, I think all my work so far was worthless too. Thanks for the feedback, though. I appreciate it. >_>

      • January 31, 2011 at 10:59 amZeruel

        I, for one, would honestly like to thank you for being harsher with your criticism here. While I have come to rely on RC for more generic summaries and blogs like THAT for in depth criticism, it’s nice to see shows not receiving a pass here regardless of the quality of the episodes.

    • January 29, 2011 at 4:18 pmShirt

      Ahh, well sorry for not being as well-rounded a writer as you. If I were going to bash on your writing, I’d first have to be a better writer. That, I am not. Do your thing, Kiiragi. I was just letting you know how one of you many readers feels about “today’s” topic, is all. People in general don’t like hearing ignorant things like what I had to say. So I apologize if my comment bothered you on a personal level. That surely wasn’t my intention. I’m not trying to troll n’ be sarcastic, man.

      (Not the greatest at using the English language to voice opinions.) Otherwise I’d start project: Wannabe a Blogger.

      :[

      • January 29, 2011 at 4:36 pmKiiragi

        For a better apology, I’d like a five page essay of constructive criticism on my writing. Good day sir.

      • January 29, 2011 at 9:44 pmShirt

        Well..? No.

        If you were a better blogger/person, I might have considered it. :]

      • January 29, 2011 at 10:30 pmKiiragi

        lol, if I were a better blogger, I wouldn’t be asking for criticism. That’s the point you know, it’s for improvement. Unwarranted attack on me though? Not cool. :[
        Also, my previous comment was a joke.

      • January 29, 2011 at 11:22 pmShirt

        I don’t take to well with jokes like that from someone I looked up to. Your “joke” ruined my morning.

      • January 29, 2011 at 11:52 pmKiiragi

        Was it that bad? lol, sorry. Imagine this face xD next to the joke, and it’ll make more sense.

  • January 29, 2011 at 7:08 amentropy13

    Good deeds need not have reasoning behind them (see the typical hero-type protagonist)

    Evil actions are always being justified by those who commit them (see villains in general)

    • January 29, 2011 at 12:15 pmKiiragi

      Relying on archetype stereotypes is why we can’t have good things.
      It’s also 90% of anime right now. It’s lazy storytelling.

      • January 29, 2011 at 2:30 pmabubu

        I agree. On the side note have you seen a new anime pv “Lotte no Omocha” it will be a loli harem anime and the lolis are feeding of the male character sperm im serious look it up.

  • January 29, 2011 at 8:46 amXin

    I’m on the same page as Kiiragi regarding this ep. The first three kept me fairly entertained and looking forward to what the series would tackle, but this one was just full of disappointment for me.

    Its at the point where its going to need to do something to save itself from becoming just another generic of the season. Given the preview I’ll hope for a strong next episode that will change up the pace.

  • January 29, 2011 at 9:03 amZangkin

    Well I see your point about how this show isn’t too deep, but I don’t hate it yet. This is one of the few animes where I don’t hate at least one character. Also to note, doesn’t Isana Tachibana seem like a yandere. She has that look that she’s gonna go crazy at some point, it’s in her eyes. Since I didn’t read the manga, you guys can prove me wrong.

  • January 29, 2011 at 9:08 amKumakaori

    Mmmmn…. Overall a “cute” episode, developing the world a slow step at a time, and no faster. Everything feels like we’ve seen it before. It’s certain that this show has failed to join the ranks of the other outstanding shows we have this season. I guess we hoped for more than we’re getting :/. A shame, this show has an interesting concept and could probably employ some downright amazing storytelling. *sigh* Wake me when gosick comes out this week. -That- will be worth watching ^_^. z_z~~.

  • January 29, 2011 at 11:43 amSilver

    Personally I also dislike this part in the manga. However, have you read the recent chapters that was released? It’s getting better and better! I can’t wait till that part now since everything after this arc is more interesting.

    • January 29, 2011 at 12:23 pmKiiragi

      I don’t read the manga, but I’ll be looking forward to seeing it in the show.

  • January 29, 2011 at 11:44 amDawn

    I agree with Kiiragi on all his points. I still like how its pretty to watch, and the MC is a badass with his one-liners, (obviously an influence from Isana’s GARR dad. :P)

    However, I swear that even Shakugan no shana has had a more coherent plot than Yumekui Merry so far…and that doesn’t sit well for me for some reason. feels like a filler episode too early in, when they should be pondering over the ‘chaser’ guy from ep1., the random angel chick from last episode’s ending, and the transfer student…

    Nevermind that the little girl from last episodes fight is non existent at the moment.

  • January 29, 2011 at 12:02 pmsealouse

    Too much talking IMO during the fight.

  • January 29, 2011 at 12:23 pmgawrshness

    come on dude it wasn’t that horrible xD like the fact that merry said vessels can’t be saved only for us to find a few minutes later that “oh they can!”

    • January 29, 2011 at 3:17 pmMcTricky

      She wasn’t a vessel yet. Yumeji chased after Mei to stop her from becoming one.

  • January 29, 2011 at 3:17 pmMcTricky

    “Do I care about the president who was just introduced now?”

    Actually she was introduced in the first episode. xD

    • January 29, 2011 at 4:29 pmKiiragi

      lol, like what, 10 seconds and one dialogue?

      • January 29, 2011 at 4:41 pmMcTricky

        I read that statement in the post as if you weren’t aware of her existence until now. xD

      • January 29, 2011 at 4:49 pmKiiragi

        Well, tbh, I didn’t. But I mean, that just goes to show how irrelevant those 10 seconds and one dialogue were.

  • January 29, 2011 at 3:55 pmP0NCH

    I too have to agree with Kiiragi on this one. They way they have introduced many of the characters thus far, and general pacing of the show leave much to be desired. I am by no means saying that I dislike the show, nor am I going to stop watching- I only hope things will pick up from here onward.

  • January 29, 2011 at 6:29 pmRockmanshii

    I pretty much agree with Kiiragi too, I like the show but I’m starting to get disappointed now. I liked this episode a bit much than the third one though, at least there was some action this time in the fight. With the appearance of the angel next episode I hope it’ll be better.

  • January 29, 2011 at 8:13 pmVelcro

    I personally think that Yumekui Merry is going to be epic, and even though this one episode seems to be a flop, what about looking forward to the next one? It does look a lot more interesting now that we’ve caught a glimpse of that girl with triangular pupils. And if this episode was a chapter in the manga, well there’s nothing that nothing that could have been done. They had to include whether they wanted to or not.

  • January 29, 2011 at 8:38 pmSolarguardian

    This is where I’m going to agree with the people who follow the manga, and this went against my don’t-read-the-manga-for-the-shows-I’m-currently-watching rule, but, this episode was like the manga chapter it was based on; a disappointment. Now next week is the one to wait for. The manga has gotten really good, or just good, depends on your tastes. So hopefully the show follows suit.

    As for the club president, she’s been there since the beginning but we haven’t had time with her so that’s what I guess Kiiragi meant when he said we don’t care about her.

    The problem with YM right now is that… it doesn’t really have a plot, yet. Next week should kick start the actual story-story.

    As for Merry… Show Spoiler ▼

  • January 30, 2011 at 9:54 amDP

    Good episode; saw Merry decide to follow a path, with a fairly easy nightmare of the week to get her comfortable in it. Enjoyed the animation in it – the individual shots were quite creative, with nice use of music.

  • January 30, 2011 at 11:26 amZaku Fan

    So far still plodding on and nowhere as bad as Rio, but Merry is getting overshadowed by alost everyone especially since Fractale finally kicked into higher gear

  • January 30, 2011 at 11:59 pmewok40k

    Well, yay for a nightmare of the week! …or maybe not? He was sorta Noble Demon type, not really hostile towards its host. Still he was possessing her which is rather abusive.
    I am afraid one-shot characters will abound in this series due to dreams needing a host.
    Pity because I really grew fond of the meganekko club chairman girl in the short time.
    Other than that Splendid Tachibana’s Oldman shines again, giving short witty advice and great uniform for Merry :P
    Ah and I feel there is more to Merry than meets the eye. What is she exactly? a someones dream? a dream lost in a reality – without a host? A dream that has a dream of returning to the dream world? Hope the next episode will give some answers.
    also it occurs to me, the ultimate setup can be to have Merry to find a way to return, but have to decide if she will leave Yumeji that she obviously will fall in love with?
    Yep, she is showimg more and more dere.

    • January 31, 2011 at 6:03 amSpacyRicochet

      What I found interesting is how quick they were to oust him completely. So far the only thing the nightmare did wrong by the Prez was not explain things properly when he possessed her. And, as we have been shown, there are examples of benevolent possession.

      However, just because our protagonist was slightly pissed at Prez being ‘stood up’, he decided that the Nightmare was an evil bastard that should be whipped. Without really getting the chance to make amends. Kind of overzealous if you ask me, which I love. It creates some fundamental character flaws in our protagonists which I hope will be explored further.