Hinamatsuri went really left field this week and got political, and while that is really important since it talked about how homeless people are treated in Japan, this week was really shocking because of how much of a departure from the series it was. Still though, it’s really important to talk about because it hit on so many important things.
The episode opens with Niita taking Hina back to his home. Ten thousand lies later, he’s exposed but it’s freaking hilarious. His sister is a drunk and his mother is as abrasive as a cactus. Somehow they make a family and it keeps in line with the theme of how families can be so strange, and yet, so similar at the same time. The meat of the episode is about Anzu though.
We get another episode riddled with plot holes featuring Anzu. She’s been living her life as a homeless person and it turns out this week, the city is ejecting the homeless people living in the park rather than helping them get back to becoming productive members of society. While people are protesting, Anzu in her innocence cannot comprehend what is going on. The men manage to run her off and have her be adopted by a family. She has an incredibly heartbreaking scene where she is left in the restaurant and is coming to terms with her new family when she reveals all of the things that the old men taught her. It’s so heartwarming and sweet and is… just such a massive departure from the comedy of the series. Talking about homeless people, which is a growing issue in Japan, and then about a family taking in a orphan is making this anime oddly progressive for a comedy that relies on cheap shots nonstop. I love it.
My hot moment of the week involves Mahou Shoujo Site, a gruesome and dark magical girl anime that just seems to strive for darker and darker with each passing episode, even if my last gripe about it was its inability to decide if it was comedy or horror. This week, I want to discuss the awfulness about Amagai Kousame’s power of healing. Kousame is a self mutilator whose magical girl power allows her to heal others by doing exactly what she has always done, cut herself. Of course, there’s that detail about feeding her blood to the person she wants to heal. Kousame’s magical girl prop is a razor. How appropriate.
This completely taps into a different side of the magical girl universe in Mahou Shoujo Site. Originally, your magical powers were supposed to make your life “better,” yet Kousame’s power seems to take advantage of the fact that she harms herself for comfort in order to help others and not really herself. Why is Kousame’s power healing? It must have something to do with her backstory, but it sure as heck does not make things better on her end. I find it a rather gruesome power on top of the other ones. Imagine, being a magical girl already requires the use of your life force in order to use your power, then you have a power that requires you to use your own blood. It just gets more and more morbid as these girls appear to have powers that lead them closer and closer to death.
Scream for me, please!
Comic Girls is not the most popular anime this season, but it’s a good story if you like your typical Slice of Life involving a girl trying to find her vocation in a certain area. Obviously, this being about 4 cute mangaka girls, funny and moe moments are all over the place. This time, however, we got to know Suzu Fuura, a new senpai who happens to be a horror mangaka… and chaos ensued for Kaos, our protagonist.
The whole first part of the episode was filled with fun gags related to horror tropes, and it’s nice to have something different once in a while. Reina Ueda did an amazing job voicing her! First she comes as a ghostly woman haunting Kaos while she’s taking a bath, and so we have some jokes that set the mood of the episode. After that, the other girls explain she’s not a ghost but a friend of them, who as a horror mangaka loves a cute girl’s screams.
The best part starts with a storm, as many famous horror stories. Who would’ve thought such a scary girl would be afraid of being lonely during a thunderstorm? In the end, Fuura-senpai turns out to be as cute and friendly as the other girls, and I’m sure many more funny and scary moments are yet to come!
In episode 17 of Darling in the Franxx, the children of Team 13 are still abandoned in a broken plantation and taking care of themselves.
They’ve managed to do quite well; washing their clothes, getting water from the lake, eating rations, and overall getting along really well.
Kokoro jumps Mitsuru while telling him she wants to make a baby, which freaks him the heck out. He’s able to talk to Hiro, who’s been growing horns like Zero Two and spending tons of time in their room with her. Hiro tells Mitsuru about his experience in relationships and tells him that he’s probably in love with Kokoro considering how he feels about her and his confusion.
Everyone is chatting in the living room when the Nines show up with Kokoro’s childbirth book that she dropped earlier and Alpha confronts her about it. Kokoro is forced to confess her desire to leave a legacy behind in front of everyone present and Alpha proceeds to berate her and humiliate her by telling her she’s disgusting for wanting to do something that is so animalistic and forbidden. Kokoro argues that there must be a reason why they are male and female and have reproductive organs and argues that humans are like animals and that’s how they are meant to reproduce. Alpha responds that the two genders are only to pilot the Franxx and that it’s a pain, which seems to bother Mitsuru, but before he can say anything, Ikuno steps up angrily and bitch-slaps Alpha, who then says that humans have also evolved past being ruled by emotions because they serve no purpose (not entirely wrong, emotions can get in the way at times), and then Goro pulls Ikuno away because she’s about to bash Alpha’s head in (which would be well deserved, frankly). And then Nana and Hachi show up.
Kokoro is taken by them to get reprimanded and they basically continue asking why she wants to do something forbidden and that their genders are only or piloting, and that their team is not special. (Really!?) But Kokoro isn’t taking it and she asks yelling why they still have emotions and why they feel the things that they do. And that’s when Nana cracks. Something happens when she hears those words and she loses control and begins screaming and holding her head. It seems that hit a button…
Kokoro is dismissed and Alpha appears around the corner asking the guardians if Nana “reverted to puberty” and commenting that they were supposed to have gotten emotion training when they were first parasites and then leaves. But not before telling them that he’s reporting to “Papa”.
The episode goes on but this whole section really brings into view the fact that these kids do have emotions. Not only emotions but strong adolescent ones, which we have not seen from anyone else. We knew their emotions were dulled from previous episodes, but it seems like this team isn’t going through the same. They fall in love, get jealous, succumb to eating disorders, get depressed, offended, etc... This episode was great because, while we’ve been theorizing from the very first episode, we are getting more and more material to try to figure out what exactly is happening! Does that mean team 13 is a team of regular humans? Is that the point? Are they trying to make regular humans? Is the whole “one gender” thing that Alpha mentioned real but was actually a negative evolution that this Papa character is trying to fix?
Who is human? Who is a Klaxosaur? Who was created in a lab and who was made the old fashioned way? (if anyone…). This show just keeps getting better!
And that is it for this week of Hot Moments! Now that Winter is over, we are in the spring of action anime. 71 titles at that! Thanks for reading until the end. Let us know below what you are watching for Spring!