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Rewrite – 07

「失われた場所」 (Ushinaware ta Basho)
“Place of Parting”

For those of you who haven’t been fond of the Rewrite OP, good news: it seems that Rewrite intends to skip its OP every other episode in order to create more real episode time. I am not especially fond of the OP myself, so I’d certainly take the extra content over the same old credits roll. But the practice does show that Rewrite is indeed very hungry for every minute, and perhaps even without an OP does not really have enough time for everything that it may want to do.

This week, the plot sharply pivots back to drama and finally returning, perhaps, to the action of the first episode. And accordingly, it’s now time to shoo out the clowns, to set aside the fun and games and adorn our frowny faces as the Business gets Serious. In fact, one notable point in the VN, which received a bit of emphasis in the anime as well (though I usually don’t enjoy comparing an adaptation to its source as much as I do), is that Kotarou goes out of his way to avoid the Serious Business. The Occult Club was supposed to be his refuge where he could just goof around, and up until Inoue went missing and his club was threatened that he actually jumps into the fray (remember how he declined to publicise the Occult Club’s discovery of the mystery goop last episode because it was too serious? Yeah, that). But now that he does, everything goes south in unexpected fashion. That’s irony, I suppose.

The thing is, though, it’s hard to get as attached to the Occult Club as Kotarou evidently is because, well, they haven’t actually done all that much. Unfortunately, the compressed, anime version of Rewrite mostly montages its way through the club activities, which decreases the memorability of each scene. Plus, it’s hard to gauge a clear passage of time throughout these episodes. How long, exactly, has the club been around and active? For us, watching episode by episode, it doesn’t really feel like all that much, does it? If they’ve only been friends for a week (which is admittedly lowballing it), then there’s not really much club worth saving. The private room is nice, though. That’s something worth fighting for.

This was also supposed to be the big payoff of the common route though. After the Occult Club goofing around, looking for UMAs that may or may not exist, suddenly there’s this ugly thing. There is, fittingly, no explanation for it, for no explanation can really suffice for giant mosquito dragons and, at the very same time, CGI chicken-saurus. And adding to the the chaos is everyone everyone suddenly wanting to be an X-Men. I’d love to hear what the anime-only crowd think of these developments, actually. I think the confusion is deliberate; the question is whether you enjoyed it. Was it Kotarou’s idyllic school life being swept away in a moment of anarchy? Or was it non-sequitur nonsense?

The balance of the former vs the latter would no doubt weigh heavily on where Rewrite goes from here. What I would like is a Kotori route, even in the face of the unlikely probability of Rewrite going deep into character routes. As far as the Unfortunate Childhood Friend archetype goes, Kotori takes it to 11. I hope the anime at least lets her have some spotlight time for her trouble.

August 14, 2016 at 10:38 am
17 comments »
  • August 14, 2016 at 12:29 pmHelvetica Standard

    If we do have a Kotori route like you say, @Passerby, Then Koutarou would have to be left at the middle of the route split. Without spoiling anything, he’d “take no side” in the upcoming “conflict.”
    This split is do or die for the adaptation. As it’s currently burning and cutting content like it’s nobody’s business.

    • August 14, 2016 at 10:03 pmPasserby

      I still think it would be best for Rewrite to go through the routes in omnibus format, but I can imagine it dipping into the Kotori route and then diverting out before the end of it.

  • August 14, 2016 at 12:49 pmbassgs435

    As an anime only, I’m enjoying the show, even if it’s a compressed adaptation
    And it finally convinced me to get the VN. Thing is, I’ll wait for Rewrite+ to be translated (it’s been confirmed it will recieve an official translation). If there’s an updated version coming up, I prefer to wait even years for that (VN translations can be very slow because of the insane amount of text that has to be translated and then edited into the game).

    • August 14, 2016 at 10:02 pmPasserby

      Great to hear you’re enjoying the show. If it got you interested in the source, then mission accomplished, I supposed. I’m also looking forward to Rewrite+, but who knows when it’d make it over to the West.

  • August 14, 2016 at 4:12 pmdaikama

    Anime only viewer. I wouldn’t say this was non-sequitur (with one exception), but it did seem choppy to me. One thing was a bit of “ass-pull”. In quotes because maybe it’s explained in the VN or something, but I’m having trouble connecting “rewrite” with becomes Magic Wolverine. To me it felt a random (and convenient) power-up.

    Agree with the review regarding any attachment (or lack there of) to the Occult Club. Maybe it’s a cultural difference, but it was hard to feel that it’s “the “end of the world” if the club disbands. I mean, they still can be friends, see each other at school (or outside school), etc. If not, then pretty flimsy friendship. While the anime tells/shows us that the club is a big deal for Kotarou, to me it’s very much “it just is” rather than providing a substantial basis why the club is such a big deal for him.

    Frankly, the way the way it was presented it was like saving the club (which only Kotarou really seemed to care about) was more important than finding the missing newspaper pres? Umm, priorities? Seriously, it’s like finding/saving the girl was pushed to an afterthought. I guess… she is dead? If so, that kind of makes “Oh, no! Our club! … oh, and uh, yeah, too bad about the girl” look worse.

    Action is not this show’s forte. The “battles” were quite lackluster with the “chicken-saurus” (I called them CGI Raptors) just so very there. Actually, the CGI Raptors were very nice and obliging as they stood patiently by while characters delivered dialog. The… plant-dragon-thingy was a bit better initially, but just ends with Magic Wolverine so… As for how these magic beasties came around, I just figured the same as how the magic wolves were created/summoned before (i.e. someone’s power). Whether that’s right or not – don’t know.

    Ribbon Girl makes her obligatory cameo, but again, it’s too much “Hey! I’m still here!” Wasn’t she THE reason Kotarou joined the Occult Club (or was that oppai :P)? She’s become very “out of sight out of mind” for Kotarou which I find odd. Again, I understand the piecemeal presentation technique for a mystery, but I don’t think this has been handled well. All I got out her latest cameo is that one of the girls seems to know/know about her. I guess that’s some progress.

    Overall, this wasn’t the best episode for this series, and that’s not a very high bar IMO.

    • August 14, 2016 at 7:07 pmCyouni

      The Aurora blades are understood exactly as much by Kotarou as you.

      I see this thing about “why does he care about the club so much” come up a lot. Two main reasons. First, consider the end of episode 2. Second, the occult club is the only reason they’re together. Kotarou already said before that he’s friendly with a lot of people, but doesn’t know them very well (see Suzuki, episode 1, for example). Without the occult club, everyone would go back to just that. This is especially true of Akane, who literally lives in that room.

      • August 14, 2016 at 7:30 pmdaikama

        @Cyouni: Re. “Aurora” blades. I got that Kotarou doesn’t understand them, but that’s not the issue. I don’t see the connection between his rewrite ability and “magic claws”. When it happens doesn’t help either. It’s totally plot convenient. Dire emergency? About to die? Sudden magic claws to the rescue! Sorry, but to me that’s ass-pull. They even conveniently disappear once the job is done – unlike his reset abilities.

        As for the club, I get your point, but OTOH, again, I don’t see anything preventing them from being friends or getting together if they wanted. For example, form another club. Some don’t want to? Well, then I have to wonder about the strength of said friendship. Don’t know existing friends, well, then fix that. What’s preventing him from doing so? A HS club? Really? I have friends that I didn’t make in some HS club. Don’t see the problem.

        Even for Akane. OK she practically lives in the room, but he could still visit. If he tries and she still doesn’t want to be friends, welcome to RL. It happens. As it stands, given that the girls are now split on opposing sides I would think the club’s pretty much toast anyway. Lastly, I’m still amazed at how the disappearance and I guess death of the newspaper girl is shoved to the side because “Oh no! The club’s disbanding”. Guess Kotarou didn’t care much for the girl.

      • August 14, 2016 at 7:56 pmCyouni

        @daikama: This might be where you want to start questioning your assumptions. Suffice it to say I’d have to use spoilers to give an proper answer, but it’s not something that can’t be figured out by yourself with what’s been already seen. Minor hint: Show Spoiler ▼

        Regarding the club, that’s exactly what he doesn’t want to risk happening. Look at the end of episode 2 for his whole motives regarding the club, and the previous episode (just after the rainbow swamp) for another hint. Last spot to look would be his monologue at the beginning of episode 1.

        Also I should note, it’s not like he’s not worried about Inoue – it’s just not something he’d normally go running off into the forest to fix himself. He wanted to leave it up to the people presumably more qualified for it until he found out that they stopped searching.

    • August 14, 2016 at 10:00 pmPasserby

      Of course it was for the oppai. Duh.

      • August 15, 2016 at 12:11 amdaikama

        @Passerby: Isn’t it always?

      • August 16, 2016 at 1:48 pmSK

        Missed opportunity here that they aren’t going with oppai route.

    • August 14, 2016 at 11:51 pmGoXDS

      explaining the aurora is very spoilery (though even in that case, I’m not sure how much it helps with it being plot convenience. in the split routes, how useful Kotarou is in combat or just his aurora is varies for not very well explained reasons but generally not useful).

  • August 14, 2016 at 6:26 pmrorschachfan

    I don’t really mind with the supposedly abrupt genre shift. Dull, tiresome slice of life is the most banal part of most VN anime that i just don’t want to sit through (i skipped much part of air and kanon during their first half and still ended up finding them quite compelling). I much prefer the story to just kick into high gear, introduce some real conflict, and just be awesome. Heck, i nearly screamed “hell yea” when kotarou suddenly grew the wolverine- like claw and slashed the tentacle with it.

    • August 14, 2016 at 9:59 pmPasserby

      Thank you for your input! Rewrite should have its plot rolling now, though I’m not really sure to where.

  • August 15, 2016 at 11:53 amtheirs

    The real question is whether or not Kotarou will get to fondle Akane’s boobs the next time they meet. Would love to hear a scientific explanation for those disintegrating raptors.

    On a slightly more serious note, I still think the pacing and directing is the same. Still confusing at times, just a little more action packed than the past few episodes. Strangely didn’t even notice the absence of the comedy elements. The episode did get me more interested in Kotori though. I’d really like to see her side of the story.

    Not really surprised by the revelation about Akane and Chihaya. A quick look at the second episode kinda reveals why. She seems to know more than she’s saying and tends to love playing with fire.

    Finally, here’s what I think when I see this image:
    http://randomc.net/image/Rewrite/Rewrite%20-%2007%20-%20Large%2003.jpg
    The girls felt pity on Kotarou losing his chance to fondle Akane’s boobs.
    Yeah, they didn’t manage to show us how close the group has become in the club.

  • August 16, 2016 at 7:36 amBreedo

    As an anime only viewer i feel it’s finally taking a direction and shape. I’m enjoying the path of discovery now that they are finally revealing bits. I think now we can see that his body adapts to whatever he needs to survive in the moment but I’m still unsure how he seems to pick his power. I would like to see how thats done in the game and probably look it up once the anime is done. It doesn’t feel dues ex to me since we were basically shown he has powers from the start. It is interesting though that he can never seem to outright beat the enemies and that he’s needed to be saved from the big ones by the ribbon girl, who seems to have an affinity for Kotarou. I’m dying to know why Kotori can see her and why she never mentions it until now. Far more interested in that relationship than the Gaurdian Gaia wars. Totally agree with the thought that the club stuff was steamrolled…Little Busters was so much richer for that feature. When they rushed through it previously I was holding my hands out at the screen saying “ohhhh what for!?” Such a waste. It’s also hard for me to feel anything for Inoue. It’s like someone came up to you and say “I’m special you know”. If you don’t follow it up with a reason to care it’s very “meh”. I’m curious but I’m not bothered if they even mention her again. It feels like there are a lot of the moments in the material that I’m not even aware of but because things don’t connect I can feel it. Like, isn’t there usually a bit of dialogue over introducing characters like the woman with the fishing pole from past episodes when they went monster hunting. It’s not hurting the overall enjoyment, just holding it back from first class storytelling. AAH It’s like how you need to see a series that a movie is based off of to get the full effect even if the plot is modified to fit 2 hours. You just feel there’s more to it.

    • August 16, 2016 at 11:38 amPasserby

      I don’t know how long the Rewrite anime intends to go, in the long run—it certainly has the material to be very long—but everything should be explained before the end. There is more to it in the VN, of course (again, very long), but the anime should at least be functional.