「汝等ここに入るもの、一切の望みを捨てよ。」 (Nanjira Koko ni Hairu Mono, Issai no Nozomi o Sute yo.)
“Abandon All Hope, Ye Who Enter Here.”
「人間は自由の刑に処されている。」 (Ningen wa Jiyū no Kei ni Shosa rete Iru.)
“Man is Condemned to be Free”
Author’s Note: So it’s been a while and I deeply apologize for my tardiness. It’s been a busy week with work and a long weekend in Canada so I hope everyone can understand. The rest of the September should be a smooth ride under fall season! For the time being though, this will be a post for the two episodes combined.
With only 3 episodes left, we start a new arc with the first years going to an island where they have to “live and survive” and it’s also a way for them to generate class points. With Class D only have 80-or-so-odd points, this feels like an excuse for the class to get more points because the students can’t do much without any leverage. By the end of the season, we’ll probably see them gain a large sum (in the ED sequence) and hopefully it’s enough to get the class to Class C. With that said, I think it’s interesting just how many different ways the class can earn and use points. Obviously the purchasing power is very important, but how to generate points is how it becomes more game-like. It reminds me of musical chairs because you’re going around trying to find these “spots” to claim and get points… all the while hidhing your leader. It doens’t surprise me that Class D chose Suzune as the leader, but it does surprise me how helpful Kanji has been. His camping and survivor skills are certainly top notch. Anyway, back to the points – without any risks., the class doesn’t get any high rewards. Although Kiyotaka has alreay uncovered the leader of Class A, there’s still a lot more potential out there to gain even MORE points. I’d like to see them put their heads together to ultimately surprise everyone by how bright the class is.
Another interesting character that gets introduced these past two episodess from Class C is Ibuki Mio (Komatsu Mikako). I prefer this slow introduction to characters rather than a dump all at once, but then again, it still feels like we’re in the early stages of the story. I’m always wondering when the showdown of Class C vs. Class D or Class A is going to go down. Mio seems to be the outcast in Class C, picking a fight with Kakeru and then ultimately being beat in the latest episode. Given that Kakeru is pretty much the bully in the class, I assume that there are very little students that stand up against him, and if they do, they end up like Mio. I feel bad for her but her attitude towards the people that are trying to help her (especially Ayanokoji and Sakura) isn’t helping me sympathize her very much. I wonder if she’s going to stay with Class D or try and find her way back to Class C next week.
Speaking of Class C, Suzune makes a good point that they’re pretty much ruining themselves. By picking fights with the other classes and having Kakeru run everything, they’re not headed anywhere good. I’m curious to see how their survival challenge will turn out. They seem to be run with a more autocratic leadership style rather than the democratic style Class D seems to take. I haven’t seen enough of Class B or A to determine what the dynamic is within those classes. With all that said, I like how the show is now focusing more on the individual students and how they’re all different and offer several perspectives on the island. Kanji particularly stood out this week which is good for the class since no one else was stepping in to build a fire or find water. Unfortunately even with a solid plan to get through the survival test, Class D still has their stranglers and this time it’s Rokusuke Kouenji (Iwasawa Toshiki). We haven’t seen much of the impact he’s left on the class so far, but by deserting them, he’s left them in a huge pinch. Truly the definition of a spoiled and selfish child – this is probably what got him into Class D in the first place.
Will this show please stop switching genres, it’s making me motion sick. We started off with school SOL and then graduated to school mystery, but all of a sudden we are in Battle Royale.
I feel like seeing that mayoiga again, the plot was jumping here and there and bunch of children talking about stupid things.
Well the fan service art was top notch though
SHIMADAAA!!! Oh wrong anime…
Anyone think Kouenji is up to something? The word that got to the group was that he was feeling ill, so he went back to the ship, but “feeling ill” certainly wasn’t something he was. Bruh just got out of the water(swam?) and climbed up the anchor chain. That’s certainly not normal. I’m not sure if its just him being an intentional cog in some particular plot or if its just him being….. him =02.
I am more surprised that more students did not tumble on earlier that something was up. I have not read the novels but from their presentation, many of the students in class D deserve to be in Class D. They have severe personality flaws that would make it difficult for them to succeed in modern society. The scene in the French restaurant is a case in point. While the others had an immediate sense that they should not be there, it was Sudo whose crass behaviour that made them immensely conspicuous. He also rose to the bait so easily that it was kind of pitiful. Collective punishment systems basically are meant to ensure self-policing, something that Class D does not do.
While I would like to think that Koenji has some sort of plan, I think it would be entirely within his established character to ditch his class to enjoy the luxuries of the ship while his class roughs it on the island. His scenes in episode 8 are meant to portray him as a narcissistic jerk and if he does pull through for his class somehow, I hope that they have a really good explanation.
I think more characters could do with development like Kanji got. He always was depicted as lecherous but aside from that, he did not have very severe personality flaws. Admittedly his skill in the wilderness does seem to come from left field, he was never mentioned to be the outdoorsy type. A little more build up would be good but at least he shows that he is willing to contribute to the class at large.
While I adored BakaTest, I find that You-Zitsu harder to love. Partly because the characters are so much less sympathetic. Sure the characters of BakaTest are comedy caricatures but when it comes down to it, most of them are nothing more than loveable idiots. The main characters (Akihisa, Mussolini, Hideyoshi and Yuuji) really come across as friends who have each others back when the going gets tough despite their flaws. They just want to prove that they have worth despite not being all that academically gifted and they just want to improve their circumstances as opposed to using cardboard boxes for furniture. Suzune’s quest is ultimately selfish and short-sighted, her brother will not acknowledge her so long as the flaws that landed her in Class D are not rectified not matter what the walking Deus ex Machina Ayanokouji can pull out of a hat for her. The main male protagonist had to be bribed to go along with getting the class a promotion too. While you can empathize with his situation and his probable troubled past, it does not make him as sympathetic.
For what I’ve seen until now, for me this series is the embodiment of the vices of the anime industry: it’s a shell made from a little suspense, a little drama, a little fanservice, some misterious/badass characters, some little other things but in the end the inside is empty. Is so superficial and cliché I can’t get attached to anything.
The worst thing of all is the mc. These type of op characters are cool if they have anything to counter them, let be humor, interesting side characters or an actual good story, but isn’t the case.
I understand when you say it’s hard to love this show because in reality there isn’t anything to love about.
I believe that your analysis is accurate which is quite the shame really. People who read the novels tell me that it had the potential to be the next OreGaIru. A sleeper hit with a good and deep story despite the trappings of its genre. Indeed both were praised for subverting some of the conventions of the High School setting. Perhaps if we are lucky, something good will come of this with the novels making it out of Japan.
Speaking of OP MCs, I found Mahouka a lot more agreeable that You-Zitsu not because I did not find the Shiba siblings annoying but because they had a solid supporting cast. I was actually a little sad when the third years graduated since Mayumi was one of my favourite characters. Frankly some of Tatsuya’s classmates are far more compelling than he is, living in the shadow of some genius is always kind of intimidating and the way they try to hone their own talents is endearing to me.
I have to admit I don’t like mahouka because of the same reasons I don’t like this show. I even find Tatsuya perfectness, groundbreaking inventor perks and panty-wetting capacities more irritating than this mc. Even more irritating than Tatsuya is all the magic-science blabbering taking up minutes for no reason. And even more I hate the 4 arcs of the anime has exactly the same order and pacing of the story. When I reached the final arc I even wasn’t expecting some twist that could make it interesting and they would pull out of their asses how awesome Tatsuya is, but the resurrection trick was so beyond my expectations of a deus ex I felt like the producers were laughing at me behind my screen. It was the first anime I dumped in the bin without rewatching and I felt really irritated because everyone was happy with it but I couldn’t see why.
Later I found the manga and some spinoff stories and I found it has some interesting things, specially the spinoff were the brothers began to know each other, even knowing the future there were actual developements. What I have realized is some anime producers like to use these type of shows to do a little of all to cover ln readers expectations, who know better the details or characters that are actually better developed in there and go directly to the juice to do the cash. Seems this series is going the same way unfortunately.
Returning to this series, this will probably the first show in my life I will drop since I don’t have the patience I used to have for bullshit in highschool animes. I can even imagine how some things will happen, they will rise to rank c, they will battle class b, all the happiness from class b will dissapear and they will be revealed as the ultimate backstabbers, then they will drop, then some developement will occur to the mc which will make him hesitate and put him in the verge of dropping but the power of her future girlfriend/wife will save him and give him a purpose to carry on. Then the final battle with class a, they will release the power of friendship but they will fail in the end but no one cares because everyone will fulfill their lives one way or another. Add some drama here, some suspense there, some revelations, maybe an edgy moment involving some unstable character and here we go.
I’m realizing how much little patience I have now for anime. I used to give second opportunities and try to see the good things of shitty animes that go for the cash. But I can’t anymore.
Btw, bakatest is a great anime this show dreams to become like it. And the author’s later work grand blue is a masterpiece of comedy, I can imagine how producers are fighting now to death for its rights.
I don’t get how “swimming a mile or so off the island to reach the ship” counts as abandoning the class exercise. If anything that should be an achievement for bonus points. It’s not like he pushed a give up button on his wrist monitor.
I can imagine the steamy whild thoughts that Sakura’s having right now
Ah, Rokusuke Kouenji. I was disgusted with his narcissism during ep. 8, but was impressed with his physical ability and confidence when he swung around like a monkey in ep. 9. He clearly doesn’t care about anyone else and has an amazing record of 52 points! I can guess why he’s on the everything is free ship, though I suspect his reason has more to do with what he said to Ayanokoji. I think he’s more like Horikita than Kakeru, thus being in class D.
As for the other classes, I think the situation is clear on class C. They probably have the highest chance of going down right now. There also seem to be a power strugle in class A between Katsuragi and Sakayanagi. They were talking about factions after all. Class B seems to be the most stable, since Honami actually managed to discus with her teacher about the biggest threats in the other classes. Probably hints that things are relatively stable there.
I’m amazed such people are in Class C, they are so obviously self-destructive. You have to wonder what the “ideal” is from the school staff. But we haven’t seen a good picture of all the students in Class A yet. Highly educated, friendly, competent, with good leadership skills? Or “the ends justify the means” types? You have to realize the school board is literally picking and choosing the next generation of government leadership with this elite school.