October 16th, 2015.
Dumb and Dumber
I… didn’t have fun with this episode. So I’ll let my notes as I watched the episode speak for themselves. If you liked the episode and can’t handle dissenting opinions, you might want to avoid reading this:
Episode 2 improved much on episode 1, but was still not good, so let’s see if episode 3 can continue that trend, and if it can actually hit average, or even better.
1) We Get It, Don’t Speak Down to Us:
1) Really, we’re wasting so much time discussing why its name fits its capabilities, or enumerating its capabilities which the name tells us, and which we saw last episode? I guess they want to make sure everyone who never heard of water striders understands. Well, to bring everyone to the same page is fine.
2) Last episode ended with it sounding very much like they want to take over the Object, pointing out that they have their own pilot, but now they’re speaking of trapping it or using its guns on its own allies. What happened?
3) And his dumb friend using the stick to point at whatever Quenthur mentions. This show’s really looking down on us.
4) Yes Princess, we’re going after the vulnerable people too!
2) The Time-Space Continuum Means Nothing:
1) Wait, they had an enemy base a couple of hours’ walking distance away and they didn’t keep it constantly under watch, which would’ve warned them of the imminent assault?
2) Yeah, “If only we do something about that Object, then we win.” There’s a reason they got rid of all of thesuperfluous personnel and armament, cause the Object wins.
3) “And everyone in our unit will have plenty of time to evacuate!” Dude, it just spent 8 hours staring at you guys doing nothing. You’d think you bought them enough time. Or that it’d have killed them if it wanted.
3) Mission Impossible Time:
1) Super safe way to hold a gun. So it’s aimed at your ally behind you, or at your own body.
2) That “Good luck!” was cute, but so out of place.
3) Considering your side never bothered putting surveillance on the enemy installation, can you blame them for being sure of themselves, or being equally dumb?
4) And of course, they chit-chat in the middle of the enemy base…
5) So, sensitive sensors, obvious solution is to mess the sensors so the Object will fail in the field, when it’s not ready for it.
6) They each have double the energy of the main cannon, making them all blow up should suffice.
7) Stop closing one eye non-stop, what’s up with that?
8) You came all this way to buy more time for your allies, presumably. Asking them to come now would defeat the purpose, and didn’t they spend 8 hours getting away too?
9) All those shots from below to make them seem cool.
4) “Religion, Huh, What Is It Good For? Absolutely Nothing!”
1) “You have the look of a savage.” I don’t need to add anything. Of course, this group has rapists too.
2) Right, why kill them simply when they can make it a spectacle and waste resources?
3) Such believers.
4) Heavy Object is competing with Sword Art Online about who has worse villains. Heavy Object is leading the race right now. Why? Because it doesn’t try to make them despicable humans, it doesn’t try for humans at all.
5) Right, declare savagery and call others savages, in the name of religion. At least it’s historically accurate.
6) “The superiority of the objects will NEVER be overturned!” Now objects are religious objects too, or heathen ones.
5) Explosions and Cavalry:
1) Right, the self-destruct functionality that stopped Princess from actually fighting properly due to damage taken.
2) Right, the Object self-destructing there and they’re going to come out alright, well, that’s regular action material stuff, at least.
3) Considering Frolayta and co took 8 hours to get that far away, surprising they managed to get back here so quickly.
4) The show really wants you to buy into how cool and amazing Frolayta is, who’s holding a sniper rifle by the barrel immediately after firing it.
5) And now the other soldiers turn and run, not used to actual fighting, though they did engage in fighting before.
6) “Well, gosh darn it!” I… Err… These are the official subtitles.
And “Looks like that japanophile is a seriously capable officer!” – And that’s actual show writing.
6) Looking Ahead… to Hope’s Demise:
1) Yes, David took down Goliath, time to rework our war books! Then again, it’s ridiculous no one tried such subterfuge before. And since it’s ridiculous, it must have happened, which would’ve meant the security should’ve been much more strict. The world-building here is ass.
2) That crouchy stance, the “this is war”, the uplifting music, this is where it gets serious. Blech.
3) Great place to end the episode, so of course we go to a ball after.
4) Stop closing one eye! GAH!
5) Right, ED playing, serious stuff, as if this is series end, not episode 3. Whatever.
Post Episode Thoughts:
This episode took me nearly 3 hours to finish. I think this beats how long it took me to get through Kantai Collection’s premiere, which wasn’t bad, but just wasn’t for me. I’m also not talking about shows like OreGairu or Mahouka which I enjoyed or didn’t (respectively), but wrote thousands of words about during the episode. This was just not an enjoyable experience for me, so I kept pausing, trying to find a reprieve.
So, what did we have this episode? We had the usual anime/action illogical bits of massive explosions that leave people well, or people who are supposed to be soldiers (albeit ill-trained due to the setting’s constraints) not knowing how to properly hold weapons, etc. Then there are all the instances of crap worldbuilding or lack of logical behaviour, and I’m not talking just about how no one guarded the shed, or infiltration as a common tactic, but an enemy base so nearby and no one keeps an eye on it? 8 hours for distraction, yet it’s not enough, but then they can come immediately when needed? Or just the show talking down to us as if we’re dumb, and every character within the show is incredibly dumb as well.
The episode wasn’t really well-directed either, in terms of tension, comedy, or just shots. It relied really heavily on showing characters from below to make some situations appear tense or characters appear awesome/menacing, even when it wasn’t really called for, and overuse of this method within this episode diluted its impact as well. The “villains” once more being all about stripping Milinda, shouting about religion, etc. also left me cold. It’s like the author didn’t even try to write believeable characters.
So, what did I like about this episode? Even if it was hammy as hell, Frolayta was indeed drawn cool, the music was good, and there actually was one segment that was well-written, plot-structure wise. Milinda’s Baby Magnum didn’t fight originally because after getting hit its sensor went haywire and she had to fight its self-destruct mechanism, which is what Qwenthur used this episode to bring the Strider down. I think they should’ve stressed the connection a wee bit more, maybe even include a tiny flashback sequence, but this part was solid.
Everything else, no, it really was bad. I did chuckle at the final shot in the episode, so I guess there was that.