OP: 「ワンダーステラ」 (Wonder Stella) by fhána
「鏡にしてるみたいでイヤなんだけど」 (Kagami ni shi Teru Mitaide Iyana Ndakedo)
“It’s Like Looking in a Mirror, and I Don’t Like It”
Though I’m undoubtedly biased, this was probably the single most funny, laugh-out-loud hilarious episode of any anime I’ve seen all season. Prisma Illya is back, and this season is going to be a blast!
The Funniest Damn Thing Around
I don’t have the words to explain how uproariously funny this episode was. From picking out swimsuits to tormenting Shirou, this is probably the single most hilarious, laugh-out-loud funny episode of any show I’ve seen so far this season—and that’s even before you factor in the Illya x Kuro kissing scene! This is the kind of situation where, as a blogger who makes it his goal to pick apart why stories work (or don’t work), I find myself at a loss. It’s comedy, you know? I can’t explain why it was funny. Sure, there’s a certain amount of foundation from the previous two seasons—these gags wouldn’t be as funny if they were done with characters we didn’t already know and like. The gags hit us fast (but not Teekyu fast), the animation is stunning, the character designs pull out more of the comedy, the timing is spot-on, and the gags are just damn, damn, damn funny! At this point, I could only list out every thing I enjoyed and gush about how amazing they were, but that would mean listing out the entire damn episode, and how fun is that? (A lot, for me, but it’s also time-consuming and I’m lazy.) Better to go with my other option: Urge you to, if you haven’t watched the episode (or Prisma Illya at all, you heathen), watch it now! And if you already have, watch it again!
Being Shirou Is (Delicious) Suffering
I’ve been catching up on Unlimited Blade Works, because I’m a ridiculous person and I got busy when it was airing. (Spoil anything in the last six episodes and I’ll cut you, even if I pretty much know what happens.) After so many episodes marveling at how being Lancer wasn’t suffering for once—until, of course, it briefly was again—I’m once again heartily enjoying Shirou’s role in Prisma Illya. This is how you make a butt monkey (trope!) that we can thoroughly enjoy, people—give them something enviable as well, so we can be jealous enough to wholeheartedly enjoy their misery. With a bevy of girls lusting after him—some of which are even of age; thanks for throwing off the curve, Rin and Luvia—it doesn’t feel like the entire world is unfairly out to get him. It feels like it’s putting things back into balance, so it’s even funnier when Irisviel, Kuro, and Liz are giving him a hard time. Take that, you lucky bastard! Hahahaha!
Except the castration thing. Too far, Iri. Too far. *shudders*
What’s With Miyu?
The wild card in the Shirou Olympics is, of course, Miyu. She’s blushing an awful lot around Shirou-san. Here’s where I remind you manga readers: We’re into the area of the story where I haven’t read the source. Use those spoiler tags. Let me be perfectly clear: If you spoil things for me, I’m going to beat you to death with a flaming orangutan. (By which I mean the orangutan will be on fire, not sexy and/or fabulous) Let’s go over the facts: Miyu reacted to Shirou when she first saw him, calling him nii-san. She blushes at him more even than she does with Illya. This is also a Fate story, so we know that alternate universes are absolutely a thing (Prisma Illya is, to my understand, just as much canon as Fate/Zero, the original Fate/stay night (all arcs), Fate/hollow ataraxia, and others I’m undoubtedly forgetting—they’re just different timelines).
My guess: She’s from an alternate world where Shirou is her brother. Possibly her actual, blood-related brother! That’s all a guess on my part, but they’re sure hinting that she knows him—and the Fate series being what it is, I doubt it’s as easy as them meeting when they were younger and Shirou forgetting. Especially since she would be prohibitively young even a few years back to remember much of anything, and she wouldn’t have gotten a nostalgic feeling from his cooking from a chance meeting.
I feel like it’s a disservice that I’ve talked more about Shirou and shipping than I have about the actual main characters (Miyu excepted), but as I mentioned, there’s not much to say. This episode was hi-freakin’-larious, but explaining the jokes would ruin them. But here’s the most encouraging thing: Of the three season premieres we’ve had so far, this was far and away the best. For season one, that made sense—they had a lot to introduce, so it needed to start slow. But compared to the first episode of Zwei, which was perhaps just a little touch stretched out, this was a top-tier, top-shelf Prisma Illya experience. While High School DxD betrayed me by sucking on the third season, I’m hoping that the Prisma Illya crew over at Silver Link will keep going strong. If this episode is any indication, it will.
Looking Ahead – Beach, Swimsuits, Gags, & Delicious Misfortune
Next week is a beach episode! So, uh, you kind of know what to expect. We’re going to get into all that jazz with the eight card and fighting Bazett and all that, and I look forward to that heartily, but before that, I have a more immediate concern: Is Issei getting a shougakusei admirer as well? My instinct is no, because Suzuka is—no, screw that. I’m auto-shipping the megane characters! Mostly because I want another guy to join the Lucky/Unlucky Shirou Butt Monkey Club. Let the delicious misfortune continue!
tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Hi-frickin’-larious, from the first minute on through. Best Prisma Illya season premiere so far. It’s so good, WATCH IT! #prismaillya s3e1
- I always love me a fhána OP, ever since … Gingitsune, I think? Around there. And the animation was, once again, beautiful. I can’t wait to see the fight scenes that are coming.
- Notice how they’re wearing the same swimsuits in their daydream as they are in the preview? Not sure whether that’s good or bad or nothing. I report, you decide.
- Hey, look, a bunch of Wall Street bankers! #cheapshot #topicalhumor #unnecessaryhashtags #sesriouslythoughmoneyisawesome
- Definitely one of the strong elements to the comedy in this series: Illya’s pro tsukkomis. They were flying fast and heavy early on. Loved it.
- Illy-Kuro-san. Nanaki gave Illya and Kuro a couple portmanteau name just in time.
- Part of me wants to know what the other ways Kuro told Illya about are. The rest of me remembers that Fate/stay night was originally an eroge, and is aware of what they got up to in there. All of me knows there are doujinshi incoming, if they’re not already here (they’re probably already here).
- You’re opening your mouth a little much there, Kuro-cha—oh. Oh, my. Carry on.
- “Lily blossoms [Yuri no hana]. It’s summer, all right.” I’ll just hang this right here.
- If Sore ga Seiyuu! has taught me anything, it’s that recording the kissing scenes must have been a lot of fun for everyone in that recording studio. Yowza!
- Mimi went out of her way to emphasize that she thinks it’s fine for girls to kiss? Yuri flag ahoy, sire! (Not that we don’t have plenty of those, nyahaha!)
- You all would get a kick out of my viewing notes for this show. They’re all ALL CAPS LOCK gushing and enough exclamation marks to make a grammatician commit suicide. This show is so conflicting for me, as a blogger. I love it so much I want to watch it immediately, but I love it so much it takes forever to blog. I want to squee about everything!!
- Related: This is also one of the hardest shows to screen cap for. I want to include them all!!!
- Mimi wants to be an author too? Young lady, with friends like these, you don’t need to make everything up. Just transcribe. You’ll make millions. Though you might need to remind them who you are.
- In case you haven’t heard, Zwei Herz! is confirmed for ten episodes. (Though there are also specials and an OVA from the previous season, and probably more to come after this one.) Apparently the publishers are concerned that too much of a good thing (Illya) would be bad, so they’re determined not to let us have it. I’d complain more if this premiere wasn’t so thoroughly worth the wait. You got me again, you sonsofbitches!
My first novel, Wage Slave Rebellion, is available now. (More info—now available in paperback!) Sign up for my email list for a FREE sequel short story. Over at stephenwgee.com, the last four posts: Be the anime blogger, If you find yourself using buzzwords, STOP, How to save Twitter, and The secret to enjoying a long life.
Full-length images: 13.
ED: 「ハプニング☆ダイアリー」 (Happening☆diary) by Kouda Yumeha