It is rather a shame that Fumetsu no Anata e is only 20 episodes. Well, for a lot of reasons, but especially because this arc (which already feels like longer than 20 episodes by itself) is going to take us almost right up to the end. When mediocre series are mediocre it’s not that big a deal really – what else would they be? But when a series that’s shown it can be really, really good is mediocre, you’re acutely aware of that quality gap. And that’s painfully the case here.
There are elements of this arc that do have some traction – mainly as it concerns Fushi’s continued emotional development and his relationship with Pioran. But apart from that very little of this is working for me. Tonari’s inevitable redemption is flat as a pancake, because it’s both predictable and hollow. Hayase is just a flat-out freak, to the point where her grotesqueness plays as cartoonish. And the logic of these events is really odd – so many things don’t even make sense, but seem to be happening for the sake of plot convenience.
As to what Hayase’s actual deal is, it would help if the narrative gave us a little more insight into her motivations. What’s with all the licking, for crying out loud? And what’s her endgame with Fushi for that matter – wealth? Power? Does she want to make a baby with him and sire a line of immortals, or does she just want to know what it feels like to jump an immortal’s bones? Who knows – she just does evil stuff and freaky stuff and vamps for the camera.
She’s clever, certainly. She knew just what to say to get the bumpkins of Jananda all riled up, and that bit about ceding the leadership to Tonari was the perfect way to take a potential enemy out of commission. She also buys off the right person in Skyfish (isn’t it bad luck to name your ship after yourself, or something?) because Skyfish is perfectly positioned to help her execute her schemes. As to Tonari’s decision to allow only children 7 and under on-board when the ship leaves, it’s actually rather cruel – though from her perspective it probably doesn’t seem that way.
I know this much – I’ve never been happier to see the Nokkers that I am now. They can’t arrive too soon for me, and Fushi can’t get off this island fast enough. I’ll grudgingly concede that Creator is right, there are elements of this arc that are important in Fushi’s development. But I really don’t want to see any more of any of these people except for Fushi and Pioran, and that’s too big a hole for the arc to climb out of. I guess it’s been so long since Koe no Katachi that I’d forgotten what a frustrating writer Ooima Yoshitoki can be.
I don’t agree often with your posts, but I do here: This arc is booooooring. I actually took a look at the time to see how much longer I’d have to sit through this (cant give up anymore). When Tonari was on the ship I thought “God, FINALLY she’s gone! Even though we’re still on the island, at least, Tonari is gone now”, only for her to…go back to the island…T_T
More than what Hayase’s motivations are, I asked myself how the hell she knows how Fushi’s transformation works. She seems to have watched the series, otherwise I can’t explain how she knows all these things about Fushi when only Fushi and his creator know how it works.
Yeah, I can’t wait for this story to be over as well. The quality of writing and character development really took a dip in this arc.
For me, it feels as if something is wrong with the pacing of this arc. You have powerful episodes, like #14. when Inmo tries not to kill because he cannot bear the pain, or episode #16 when we get the reveal that Hayase killed Parona and Inmo tries to kill someone out of anger for the first time. Those episodes where focused on a few developments and how Inmo learns/reacts to them.
And then you have this episode, where many things happened one after another and the writing is all over the place. This episode feels as if it had the content for 1.5 episodes but they didn’t know how to split it into two episodes, so they just crammed everything into one.
Regarding Tonari… I don’t know what the writer could have done to improve her character. She was written at first as someone that we could really dislike, and now her sudden development and redemption feels rushed and plain. Take a look at Endevour in “My Hero Academia”, where the writer spend many, many chapters organically and slowly developing the character and his relationship with his family.
I stopped watching right after the Gugu arc – that was all I wanted from the anime anyway. When I read the manga long ago, that was where the peak of this series was for me – a part of me died with Gugu and I didn’t think I could FEEL that much anymore for another character… and I was right.
I had hoped I wouldn’t be right, though.
I’ve read Koe no Katachi before this too, and I have to agree it’s very frustrating how the author can hit such highs and lows. I think this series is worth it to watch/read once just for those highs, but these lows really kill the motivation and my hopes for the story. When it delivers, it really does but… when will it deliver again? We can only push on to find out, and we won’t even know if it’s worth it it until we’ve actually finished it. And that really hurts, what with us anime watchers growing up and having less time and effort to commit to a show that has potential but also might fall flat.
Even so, I don’t regret recommending this anime to others, even if just so they’d watch the earlier episodes (which were entirely worth it). Even when mediocre it’s not fully horrible, I’ll give it that, and in more frustrating arcs there are still glimpses of good stuff. But I, at least, won’t be letting myself experience this arc twice (once in manga, then in anime), and instead just move on and wait for better parts to come along.