Random Curiosity

Rakudai Kishi no Cavalry – 03 »« Rakudai Kishi no Cavalry – 01

Rakudai Kishi no Cavalry – 02

「落第騎士 II」 (Rakudai Kishi II)
“The Worst One II”

I can totally see this episode putting off some viewers at first, but that’s why I’m here to point out all the good things that happened!

Smooth Sailing Part A

Man, could things have gone any better for Ikki and Stella? Besides syncing their routines and being comfortable enough to train and joke about each other’s stamina together, who would have thought they would have gotten past the indirect kiss conundrum so quickly? With most potential pairings losing sight of the nice gesture of one offering a drink to another, it was nice to see Stella let out some her tsuntsun while tackling the situation head on. That and let’s give Ikki some credit for seeing past Stella’s tsuntsun moment — that little smile after she grabbed his drink just says it all.

Sibling Affection

Boy, was that a little surprising. Within seconds of appearing on screen, who would have thought Shizuku would leap straight into a kiss with her older brother? And a nice and sloppy one at that! Sibling love aside, I was really digging how SILVER LINK managed to recreate the really tense and awkward situation between the three of them without making us cringe as it all went down. Using Ikki as the catalyst for the whole thing, the true magic appeared when the spotlight shifted to Stella and Shizuku’s little fight. With the former letting a little too much slip out and the latter completely ignoring anything not involving her affection and love for her beloved onii-san, I don’t think it surprised anyone that a fight eventually broke out. What was a nice surprise though, was when the two managed to relax a little and actually managed to hold a conversation, as short as it may have been. With Stella learning a little more about Ikki and Shizuku considering that Stella might not be that bad, the whole ordeal felt worth it by the end.

Smooth Sailing Part B

While I call shenanigans on how quickly things are moving, there’s no denying that Stella and Ikki are getting awfully comfortable with each other. But what caught my attention wasn’t the fanservice or Stella’s proportions, but how earnest their conversation ended up being. As we’ve seen before, Stella isn’t the most tactful when it comes to sensitive questions, but the way she asked Ikki about his preference for breasts was just too adorable not to smile at. That said, I was a little disappointed when I heard a slap sound after her bikini came loose because it’s not like she didn’t already acknowledge that Ikki wasn’t already looking there, right?

Looking Ahead

Even with SILVER LINK taking every opportunity to throw breasts in our face, this second episode hit all the right notes in my book. Splitting the episode into introducing Shizuku and giving some more back story to Ikki, I think they’ve struck a pretty good balance between throwing exposition at us and letting the fun times roll. With things sailing smoothly, it looks like the monumental third episode is going to continue on with a little more introduction about the Worst One and I doubt any of us have a problem with that!

Anyways, I’ll catch you guys next week when we get to see one of my favorite pairs of the season do more stuff together. Ciao~

P.S. For those of you who are screaming “omg harem” read this spoiler at your own risk.
Show Spoiler ▼

 

ED Sequence

ED: 「波羅蜜恋華」 (Haramitsu Renge) by ALI PROJECT

End Card

October 10, 2015 at 10:09 pm
55 comments »
  • October 10, 2015 at 10:19 pmWanderer

    I expect Shizuku will feature heavily in the doujins for this series.

    • October 10, 2015 at 10:42 pmRyan Ashfyre

      It’d be tough for any series to match the virtual smorgasbord of doujins that SAO unleashed, though I say Rakudai will at least match the rush that Is It Wrong to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? gave us, which is fine by me. ;D

      Now if only Nakajima Yuka could be the one do one of ‘em, that would be fantastic as to be beyond words. She’d do right by Stella and Ikki in a way that not many could match.

  • October 10, 2015 at 10:24 pmptolemaios00

    One more good thing: the back and forth insults between Stella and Shizuku were just so amusing and imaginative.

  • October 10, 2015 at 10:31 pmsonicsenryaku

    “That said, I was a little disappointed when I heard a slap sound after her bikini came loose because it’s not like she didn’t already acknowledge that Ikki wasn’t already looking there, right?”

    yea that slap pretty much killed the moment: i was like “man they’re doing a good job subverting the typical awkward moment between two characters in a sexually awkward anime moment”……..aaaaaaaaaand then she smacked him. I mean i get it, she got flustered that things spiraled a bit out of control than she would have liked but still

    • October 11, 2015 at 2:40 amMentar

      I was annoyed by this, as well – because Stella was never trope-violent towards Ikki (the first slap from episode 1 didn’t happen either). In fact, Silver Link is removing several scenes which are _against_ the norm in the genre and add new scenes (like the bra-slip and subsequent slap) which are a dime a dozen.

      So, even though I’m still happy with the show, I’m annoyed by Silver Link’s tendency to drag the show into the mainstream. I consider it one of its selling points that it is NOT.

      • October 11, 2015 at 2:52 amKaleRylan

        I basically said the same thing below (didn’t see this). The fact that this production staff itself is undercutting one of the most refreshing aspects of the source (subversion of tropes) by literally re-inserting tropes that were not present in the source is incredibly concerning. This episode suggests that going forward is going to be a war between the source material and the production staff and generally in that situation we’re the ones that lose.

        As I said in another comment I’m not giving up because you can still see elements of the clever source material here, but knowing that the production staff is actively damaging that is a problem.

      • October 11, 2015 at 3:08 amsonicsenryaku

        it wasnt even the bra slip that was the problem. They could have kept that in but have stella and ikki become extremely embarrassed from the situation and just pulled away from each other before they got any deeper into it. Like ikki realizes that stella’s bra fell off to which they both get extremely embarrassed, stella apologizes and then pulls away. Ikki understands it was just an accident and then they both get out of the shower before things get any crazier. That’s exactly how it should have played out if the staff wanted to add the bra slip change. The slap downplayed the simple fact that these two characters are sexually curious about each other and are demonstrating it in a pretty healthy, teenage fashion

      • October 11, 2015 at 3:14 amKaleRylan

        I’m not really going to analyze the deep specifics of what they could or couldn’t have done since that’s an endless rabbit hole that leads anywhere you want it to. The key is that they added a scene that wasn’t there for the express purpose of using a well-known (and popular) anime trope, completely missing the fact that what sets this show apart (pretty much the ONLY thing that sets this show apart) is its general avoidance of the exact sort of trope that the staff added in of their own volition.

        Having a staff that apparently doesn’t get the reason for the appeal of their own material is not a good sign. Could end up being nothing, but it’s not a good sign.

      • October 11, 2015 at 7:02 amsonicsenryaku

        @kylan Reyn; Im pretty sure it is nothing as the show still shows how much stella’s affection for ikki doesnt prevent her from attempting to display it outwardly towards him. While Rakudai does things with a slight spin, i wouldnt say it subverts tropes in the way one would typically define the word. However it doesnt beat around the bush nor does it get too hampered in its tropes and i think that’s the best way to describe what Rakudai does.

      • October 11, 2015 at 9:39 amKaleRylan

        I basically agree, but I would also say that since beating around the bush is pretty much the single most important trope of nearly all anime romance, not reading around the bush is perhaps one of the largest trope subversions I’ve ever seen in an anime.

    • October 11, 2015 at 10:35 amI halp

      It was meant to be funny. I guess you guys have no sense of humor for this type of situations. =p

      • October 11, 2015 at 11:10 amsonicsenryaku

        haha yea i guess but when you see this same scenario 1000 times in 1000 different anime, it just stops being funny and becomes lazy. Rakudai, as generic as it is, should do it’s best to avoid generic execution as well, otherwise it becomes a completely generic series with no real value

      • October 11, 2015 at 6:40 pmKaleRylan

        Everything about standard anime romance tropes are ‘meant to be funny.’ Tsundere, weak leads, stuttering, misunderstandings, harems, and so on. They’re not there to attack us. They’re there to be entertaining. And they’re old. Even a good joke, if told 100 times, becomes a bad joke.

        As such, the source material has decided to avoid some of the more obvious old jokes because… they’re obvious… and old. To have the production putting back in obvious old jokes makes the show more obvious and old. Which is a downgrade.

  • October 10, 2015 at 10:41 pmRoster

    I think they did a good job at pulling the bait and switch with how Shizuki worked. She first gets introduced and the viewer thinks this is just the usual imouto fest love interest, time for the show to spiral down into harem territory. Then it’s slowly revealed that there’s more to it than that and Shizuki just earnestly cares for her onii-chan’s unfortunate fate. I like that. It makes what you’d usually think is a shallow character solely for incest service be developed into a much deeper and genuine gal.

    That’s how this has been so far really: “It’s not as shallow as one might think.”

    Besides that, I don’t mind the slap. It’s really nothing much considering how seemingly spot on this episode is.

  • October 10, 2015 at 10:49 pmzztop

    The slap and loose bikini scenes were anime-original, but the bath scene is in the novel. The chapter ends with Stella Show Spoiler ▼

    The novel explains Stella went into the bath to find out if Ikki’s Show Spoiler ▼

  • October 10, 2015 at 10:52 pmOnePunch_Guy

    Show Spoiler ▼

    • October 10, 2015 at 11:04 pmTakaii

      People are speculating EP4 with how the plot is progressing.

      • October 11, 2015 at 7:55 amAex

        Unless they keep messing with the material, that won’t be until Ep. 6 or 7. Without rushing, Ep. 5 will probably be Show Spoiler ▼

        Important not to confuse the two with this story.

  • October 10, 2015 at 10:53 pmHao

    The monumental episode should be Ep 4 not 3. Although Ep 3 does need to be good enough to make people want to watch the next one because Ep 4 is really an important turning point which even the main cast said to look forward to.

  • October 10, 2015 at 10:53 pmzztop

    An interview with he main cast in Japanese:
    http://www.animate.tv/news/details.php?id=1443863006

    The cast describe Stella as 10% tsun and 90% dere. In the last part of the interview, they mentioned the increase of fantasy schools as the setting. But the development in Rakudai is different and people should look forward to more. It’s because there are other attractive characters, and Ikki and Stella’s relationship development is something rare. The development in Ikki and Stella’s relationship is a main focus of the story.

  • October 10, 2015 at 11:00 pmDeadmanlying

    Yen Press…… this and Gakusen…….

  • October 10, 2015 at 11:08 pmCroos

    I’ll just put this [Full length of her and ED image] here.

    • October 13, 2015 at 1:36 amHanabira.Kage

      Wait…the student council president? I seriously doubt we’ll be able to get to that volume in one cour unless they seriously rush this adaptation. Even getting to the Sword Eater fight’s pretty questionable, but since that pretty much ties in with Ikki’s previous match…

  • October 10, 2015 at 11:10 pmzztop

    Ali Project songs were used in the OPs of all the Rozen Maiden animes (the one with the magic talking dolls), you may recognise their distinctive singing style. The ED’s quirkiness is a counterpoint to the prettiness of Asterisk’s ED.

    Here’s the music video sample for the ED, coming this 21 October:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gXBTdMWZttU

  • October 10, 2015 at 11:36 pmHalfDemonInuyasha

    …no comment on a person who literally vomits A LITER of blood A DAY, yet is somehow a teacher? XD

    • October 11, 2015 at 12:03 amTakaii

      An enthusiastic* teacher who literally vomits a liter of blood :3

    • October 11, 2015 at 12:24 amRyan Ashfyre

      You wish we had teachers with that much tenacity irl.

    • October 12, 2015 at 9:04 pmHelvetica Standard

      I have no knowledge of the source material but… Is that just a black comedy thing?
      I mean she looks very much alive and kicking. Stomach ulcers? or perhaps a side
      effect of her own Device? I mean, a liter! how can she even be alive?! XD

  • October 10, 2015 at 11:52 pmzeroyuki92

    When it could easily go into doujin/eroge materials, it backed down really fast with a typical ecchi slap (Hey, you were pressing your breast to a naked male creature in a friggin bathroom and suddenly get really embarassed just because a piece of undergarment slipped down? Also how could you not noticing the slip when you are pressing it hard to someone’s back? And why I even take this seriously?)

    I sometimes pity those fictional 2D couples. In normal circumtances they would go all the way already, but because this is an “all age” LN they have to return to the usual ecchi slapstick. When we will see this kind of romance/harem where the couple just go all the way, only off screen?

    • October 11, 2015 at 12:20 amRyan Ashfyre

      >] “I sometimes pity those fictional 2D couples. In normal circumtances they would go all the way already, but because this is an “all age” LN they have to return to the usual ecchi slapstick. When we will see this kind of romance/harem where the couple just go all the way, only off screen?

      The first Garo anime did it. They did it quite a bit, in fact.

      • October 11, 2015 at 1:22 amzeroyuki92

        Which is not an ecchi anime by a long shot. Those harem protags are the one who suffered a the most in holding their libido when every girls and fate pushed them into “unfortunate moments”, yet they almost never actually going all the way, even off screen…

        Why did I care about this anyway lol.

      • October 11, 2015 at 8:00 amRyan Ashfyre

        Garo certainly wasn’t an ecchi series by any stretch of the imagination, to be sure, but it did have romance. Just sayin’

        Mayhaps the only other recent anime that comes to mind would be SAO. It was brief, but there was one that time right around the middle-ish part of the first arc where Kirito and Asuna had just gotten together.

    • October 11, 2015 at 2:48 amKaleRylan

      I just read the manga version of this scene, and while I don’t know if it’s the same in the LN, the whole top falling off/slap thing just doesn’t happen in the manga. So it is a bit frustrating to see it in the anime. When the primary selling point of this anime is how it subverts standard anime tropes regarding this sort of relationship, having the anime staff ADD THOSE BACK IN is very concerning.

      • October 18, 2015 at 2:35 amKrud

        Show Spoiler ▼

  • October 11, 2015 at 12:23 amdaikama

    Guess I’m in the minority on this one. Have to admit, I did not expect what happened in this episode. I can’t recall a “never met the guy before tsundere” going to love/lust so fast. “Smooth sailing”? More like warp speed, and the reason is… “He recognized she works hard”? O.o Seriously, that’s all I got. To me Stella’s almost a different character. Where’s the proud, feisty, “I’ll forgive you for seeing me in my underwear if you commit seppuku/hara-kiri”, tsundere princess? Now, one episode later, not only is she willing to publicly proclaim she’s his servant, but seems to be happy about that role (which, though surprising, is good in a way since it’s her choice) to the point of using it as an excuse to give him a tiny bikini (ultimately topless) “breast wash”. It’s not the ecchiness, but the whiplash degree of change and SPEED upon which it all happens.

    An even bigger surprise was his BLOOD related sister giving him a deep, sloppy kiss (in public no less). Then when imouto explains it as “only natural”, Ikki’s response is “Oh, really?” Huh!? That’s… not the reaction one would expect – comedy aside. Even KissxSis uses the “it’s OK because we are NOT blood related” ploy. A minor surprise was Kagami joining the harem as well. If the ED is anything to go by, that’s 3/4 of the harem assembled in Episode 2. Is the adaptation cutting out a lot of material?

    Suffice it to say I didn’t think too highly of this episode. It wasn’t all bad. The overall production IMO is better than say Asterisk. Scenes seem to flow better here than in that show. However, I think Asterisk had the better second episode despite its own flaws. This show is very much on the bubble for me, but I’ll give it one more episode (“3 Episode Rule).

  • October 11, 2015 at 1:32 amTechim

    Do you think someone as “knightly” as Ikki would really consider Show Spoiler ▼

    Takaii-san, some of us had the unfortunate experience of watching Show Spoiler ▼

    ,so anime-only watchers these days might be a little jittery at imouto developments.

    • October 11, 2015 at 8:24 amAex

      It ain’t going there. Not even close. Different galaxies, even.

    • October 11, 2015 at 11:56 amTakaii

      … I actually liked oreimo.

      But yeah, Show Spoiler ▼

  • October 11, 2015 at 1:51 aminfo600

    It’s funny (for me) how the theme of hard effort for favorable results were done differently between the LN/manga and anime:

    LN/Manga – the morning 20KM run/sprint
    Show Spoiler ▼

    Anime – Stella’s training to control her powers – at least Silver Link realized that there wasn’t enough emphasis on her efforts last week:

    http://randomc.net/image/Rakudai%20Kishi%20no%20Cavalry/Rakudai%20Kishi%20no%20Cavalry%20-%2001%20-%20Large%2017.jpg

    …So more here:
    http://randomc.net/image/Rakudai%20Kishi%20no%20Cavalry/Rakudai%20Kishi%20no%20Cavalry%20-%2002%20-%20Large%2028.jpg

  • October 11, 2015 at 2:40 amKaleRylan

    I do feel that this was a weaker episode than the first. It still had some of the potential of the first, so I’m not rage-quitting the series or anything, but at the same time it was a much more by-the-numbers episode of one of these shows than the last.

    -I get that Shizuku’s character receives some growth be even the end of the single episode, but her character is still just blatantly crazy.

    -The Stella scene was WAY over the top. That said, I read this part of the manga and it has a scene they left out here before she goes in. Basically, because Ikki didn’t resist Shizuku hard enough, Stella is worried that he’s a lolicon, so she goes in to try and get proof/assure himself that he actually likes busty girls. Obviously, fanservice is still fanservice, but I felt that helps explain what Stella was thinking and why she picked the string bikini above even a towel.

  • October 11, 2015 at 3:39 amWorldwideDepp

    I also follow this Show so far. Looks promising, even if the Bathroom Scene was for someones out of Place. Looks like this Show want to break out of the Standard Storytelling cliche. But please, do not take the Step of School Days “Adult Only” scenes. I mean, yeah for Mature audience its okay, to deepen the Stuff and such. But then you enter finally the cliche Lines you trying to avoid

    and “exiled” family Member, and failure befriend an Princess and both life long together until death turn them apart

    The Drive here is the introducing of the Members, we saw in the OP. And the Main drive hidden, is the reason why the Princess is targeting of this Assassination. We get now hints, of the Weapons they use. I bet they have some kind of Weapon Database in this School. Perhaps with this Side road, they can reduce the suspects to fill the season

    But i bet, it has something to do with the Princess Parents at Home

  • October 11, 2015 at 4:42 amCroos

    I can totally see this episode putting off some viewers at first, but that’s why I’m here to point out all the good things that happened!

    I see what you’re saying there, Takii. (゜▼゜*)

  • October 11, 2015 at 6:01 amSerYuo

    This is probably the first time in a while where 2 magical high school anime are actually competing for the better spot this year instead of the worst spot.

    Both had pretty good starts, and even better second episodes. If I had to say which one is winning right now though….hmm I think Calvary is winning by a thread because it’s comedy is actually a bit new and somewhat refreshing. Asterick’s isn’t really new, but it’s delivered in a way that keeps things entertaining. Not to mention its pretty to watch and the soundtrack is BUMPIN.

    But both of these anime have a lot of good points so far. Hopefully its all relatively uphill from here, because I do love me the magical high school setting a lot as opposed to a lot of other people.

    • October 11, 2015 at 6:05 amSerYuo

      Let’s not forget they also gave Asterick more episodes to do something pleasant with it, in which a lot of magical harem high school anime doesn’t get

  • October 11, 2015 at 10:44 ameldaron

    Dropped both this and Asterix this is not for me, still have hopes for Taimadou tho.

  • October 11, 2015 at 4:54 pmlalunafelis

    Not jumping into the Rakudai vs Asterisk bandwagon here(will be bingewatching Asterisk when it ends and I’ll stick with this one for the meantime since it’s shorter). Nor will I jump into the hate bandwagon either. Both are still my side attraction fireworks with my popcorn while watching this show.

    Sure, I am a bit thrown off with the incestuous frenching, but when all the dust has settled and I had time to think about it, a thought just came to me that, while potentially disturbing and/or could just be dismissed as wild mass guessing, also helps put things in perspective on the way Shizuku is acting towards her brother(not a spoiler, but an insane wild mass guessing ahead): Show Spoiler ▼

    On a different note, I see a lot of complaints about the main couple falling in love with each other too fast. I can see why, but personally, I chalk it up to the writing staff of the anime and not necessarily the source material. In the right hands, the “falling in love fast” thing can be pulled of in such a way that it not only is believable, but can be poignant as well. With all due respect to the anime staff, I’m not exactly convinced that they can give the source material the full justice it deserves. Again, I’ll still be sticking with this until the end.

    • October 12, 2015 at 5:16 pminfo600

      LN Spoilers for Kurogane household’s “tradition” that should be fully explained later in the anime or Volume 3 of the LN, if not already.

      YOU’VE BEEN WARNED

      Show Spoiler ▼

  • October 11, 2015 at 6:58 pmBROOKLYN otaku

    “but that’s why I’m here to point out all the good things that happened!”

    …I lol’ed.

  • October 12, 2015 at 6:52 amewok40k

    This series, along with Asterisk is becoming my guilty pleasure…
    For a change we have a pair that actually clicks together well to the point they are comfortable enough to take bath together… Stella is getting fast past her tsuntsun moments, and Ikki does good job of being honest about his feelings.
    The crazy bro-con sister is a bit more difficult for me to swallow. As an older brother to 2 sisters in real life, I am fully aware such things just dont happen. I did LOL hard though at her reasoning that “if such shallow bond as lovers are alllowed to kiss, then siblings who share much deeper bond can also”…

  • October 12, 2015 at 8:49 amLonghaul

    I came for the ero.

    I stayed for the dynamic between Ikki and Stella.

  • October 12, 2015 at 10:05 amCherry

    It’s like I’m watching Gakusen Toshi Asterisk but the sister isn’t dead. #PinkHairPrincess

    • October 15, 2015 at 7:46 amRaiu

      Is this Cherry the RC blogger or just some other dude with the same username?

      • October 15, 2015 at 10:28 amStilts

        Cherrie’s handle is spelled with an ie, and her account is registered, like all writer’s (see: this comment).