Clarity after many Hershey’s Kisses  

 

CLARITY: QUOTE OF THE WEEK

Oh god people actually bothered to dub this – You haven’t hit Fall seasonal rock bottom until you experienced Ousama-Game’s dub. There is nothing worse than that.

CLARITY: RESOURCES

KINO’S JOURNEY

I’ve really been enjoying how Kino’s Journey excels at expressing both the terror and triumph of its world – wholeheartedly embracing this week’s cast rather than just writing them off as vehicles for their central dramatic need. Episode six’s thematic notes are just as sound as its aesthetic fundamentals, and it’s a credit to the execution that they’re all smoothly blended together into a mix of strong storytelling. Today we’re opening up Clarity with a relatively short, but still thoughtful piece:

Quick Thought: Kino no Tabi -the Beautiful World- the Animated Series (Episode 6)

KEKKAI SENSEN & Beyond

For as propulsive and fluent Kekkai Sensen’s action sequences tend to be, there’s just so much that’s understated about this work’s character dynamics. Our character writing here is never one-note, having enough expressional prowess to display a diverse array of moods in limited windows, and the comedy they generate is handled lightly and quickly so it doesn’t wear out its welcome or overstep its boundaries:

Kekkai Sensen and Beyond – 06

NET-JUU NO SUSUME

Signal. MD likely still struggling with production issues given the off model shots here and there this week, but as usual, Net-juu no Susume manages to turn its exploration of anxiety into consistently endearing skits. The material during the date sequences was solid and the cast has spent enough time gaining texture that their more intimate moments can now feel emotionally earned:

Netojuu no Susume Episode 6

SHOUJO SHUUMATSU RYOKOU

Once again, Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou extended an episode beyond its standard dramatic length to great effect – offering typical slice of life pacing, but a central focus that gives it impact. And there was also plenty of the small dashes of character acting and observation of conversational breaks that make this show’s conversations feel a lot more organic. I would argue that realism isn’t always a positive or even needed in fiction, but it’s definitely useful to articulate certain goals, and it’s perfectly appropriate for the type of thematic makeup this series thrives on:

Girls’ Last Tour 6

BALLROOM E YOUKOSO

Credit to I.G for establishing a final minute intensity that the audience can keenly recognize during last week’s Ballroom. The animating job on almost every cut of Tatara’s new found vigor must of been laborious, but the quality shows. I.G’s dance scenes have a tangible sense of weight and urgency to it – consistently showing a realistic push and pull with each step and turn. Even their stills have a sense of urgency, bringing a particular aggressive flavor to this dance competition in their own sharp style:

Ballroom e Youkoso – 17/18

MAHOUTSUKAI NO YOME

A great deal of episode six’s relative strength might just come down to how gorgeous and well composed every element is. There was a distinct sense of atmosphere from start to finish, facilitated by fundamentally strong writing and fine chemistry between our new additions in Titania and Oberon. The finish was even better, with a tonally satisfying end and clean creation of momentum for next week. At this point it’s safe to say that Mahoutsukai no Yome isn’t just a pretty production with a serviceable narrative, but one of the most, if not the most, consistently confident pieces of storytelling airing on a whole. Let’s take a moment to respect some of its earlier symbolic touches:

EVERYTHING MUST HAVE A BEGINNING — DANDELIONS AND MORE FLOWER LANGUAGE IN THE ANCIENT MAGUS’ BRIDE


IMOUTO SAE IREBA II

At the end of the day, any given work succeeds on the strength of its execution – ideas are cheap, craft is difficult. Imouto sae Ireba Ii is still sadly pushing around weak ideas:

Imouto sae Ireba li 5


CLARITY: SAYINGS

What to say in rush hour traffic…
This isn’t going well. Just Because! and all of its production woes have already been prominently put on record, but it appears they’re a little more extensive than many initially thought. Previously the series has at least been able to meet its deadlines, spitting out its organic – low key character drama with notable roughness. But now, even its timing has been questionable. After taking a delay this past week, it appears Just Because! will be taking off next week completely. Episode 7 will air on the 23rd, but hopefully these delays don’t become a trend.

What to say when your Fantasy team likely won’t make the playoffs…
There’s always next season. Hey here’s a thought, maybe A.C.G.T. can not adapt anything this upcoming Winter…or ever? The job they’re doing handling Diesirae has truly been laughable – to take such highly regarded source material and drive it deep into the ground to the point that it’s a confusing mess that’s scored worse than Sho-Bitch takes a special level of incompetence. Please for the love of god don’t let them touch anything else again.

What to say when no one responds to your group text…
I guess I’m alone on this one. Recently, I haven’t been alone on my Junni Taisen take. Looks like a larger portion of the community has finally come to terms with how poor and linear Junni Taisen really is. For awhile now, this series has had its fair share of apologists, overlooking Juuni Taisen’s narrative shortcomings, limited character work  and abrasively predictable sequencing week in and week out. With this past episode, all that seemingly changed.


CLARITY: ON THE MOVE

For when you’re in the mood for family drama that’s not your own…
Why aren’t you watching this? Oh, you are? Then just watch this scene again anyway.

For when you need something to listen to in the background…
Give this podcast a listen. It’s new, but has plenty of talent on it and our whole team at Seasonal Prattle has been enjoying it so far. Need more? This one is also pretty good.

For when you haven’t been drenched in the community’s latest meme…
Well. here’s your chance. Godspeed.


CLARITY: CONNECTIONS

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