Why I Dropped

Why I Dropped Rewrite

(As of this time, episode 6 of Rewrite has been released and is available to watch)

With every single visual novel-to-anime adaptation that comes out, I expect nothing but bad things, but then I remember that Clannad and Clannad ~After Story~ exist, so I end up giving these adaptations a watch anyways. This is the case with Rewrite, an anime that’s currently airing, based on the visual novel made by Key Studios. After watching the entirety of the 47-minute long first episode, my doubts in visual novel-to-anime adaptations grow ever so deeper.

Cover art for Rewrite

 

Rewrite (リライト) takes place in a city that focuses on caring for the environment, foliage being grown throughout the entire setting. Our main character, Kotarou, lives in this city, along with some other girls that you know have routes in the visual novel. We have a tsundere (bonus: transfer student), a petite girl with an eyepatch, a perverted shy girl (bonus: childhood friend), and a violent class representative introduced within the first episode. Kotarou has recently been visited by a small girl that takes a liking to sucking on his arm then disappearing before he can do anything about it. For how freaked out he is when this happens, he pays it almost no heed during school, and doesn’t tell anyone anything specific other than “an encounter with the supernatural”. After that, we’re introduced to two fairies/sprites/nymphs/whatevers with the most piercing voices since Love Live! Sunshine!!. They serve as the “comic relief” as far as I can tell. After meeting them, they, plus the arm-sucking girl from earlier, fight some weird monster that doesn’t even have a name, after the arm-sucking girl was subdued by the delicious coffee that Kotarou threw at her. The 47-minute first episode ends with Kotarou meeting yet another heroine: the occult club president, completely ignoring the intense supernatural fight sequence he just witnessed.

I don’t know where to begin with this one. Everything about the first episode has all of the warning signs of an anime with nothing good to come: incredibly rushed pacing, lazy introductions, archetypes for characters, abandoning logic for comedy, bland main character surrounded by heroines of his choosing, and annoying comic relief. This has got to be some kind of record. To top it all off, the fact that the series opens with a 47 minute-long first episode proves to us, the audience, that a 13-episode runtime is not even close to cover the essentials of what the source material covers. The first episode is supposed to be the best foot forward. Completely failing to give something even remotely engaging or original within the first episode of something with tons of source material to work with shows only a descending path for what’s left to come. For reference: the Rewrite visual novel takes an average of 62 hours to complete. That’s crushed down into just 5½ hours of anime time (12 episodes * 24 minutes + 47 minutes) ! Clannad, on the other hand, takes an average of 74 hours to complete, and that’s crushed down into 18.8 hours of anime time (47 episodes * 24 minutes).

It appears that Rewrite wants to show us, the audience, everything wrong with it in only a 47-minute segment. It already has pacing problems, combined with the amount of content in the source material vs. the time contraints of the anime. None of the characters have any dosage of originality to them, including the main character. Of course, humor is subjective, but that too is nothing but recycled situations from previous works hasilty molded into the setting of this anime. I don’t know; maybe I’ll be wrong and this series will get better and better with each episode. Maybe the ending will be worth all of the trouble. As far as I can tell, however, that will not be the case.

Why I Dropped Love Live! Sunshine!!

(Warning: The following post is kinda ramble-y and not meant to be taken very seriously. Possible trigger warnings: Hate upon the Love Live! Sunshine!! series, indifference to the original Love Live! anime, someone having their own opinions)

Let’s get one thing out of the way: I don’t hate the Love Live! franchise. I watched the entirety of the first two seasons plus the movie. I didn’t find it anything special, and it’s certainly not worth making an entire post of it. I went into this series with no expectations, albeit a little to optimistic about this show being anything more than its predecessor. Maybe it would have more realistic, down-to-earth characters, maybe the writing would be engaging, maybe the voices aren’t stupidly high-pitched. The universe has read my mind and, to spite me, granted my wish in the opposite direction.

Cover art for Love Live! Sunshine!!

A lot of people in the anime community agree upon the “3-episode test”, where you give an anime 3 episodes to engage you. If it fails, drop it, if it passes, keep watching. A lot of other people agree upon the “do whatever the hell you want test” (including myself). There needs to be a new test. I call it the “3 minute test”. If you’re watching an anime and you absolutely despise it within 3 minutes, drop it right then and there. This is what I originally did with Love Live! Sunshine!!. Naturally, I complained online, and got hit by a wave of fanboys saying that I shouldn’t be so quick to judge. This series wouldn’t even be on my MAL profile if I followed my original test. However, I listened to the others and kept watching. Three episodes later, I started to regret that decision.

Maybe I just don’t like Japan’s idol culture. Maybe extremely high-pitched voices aren’t my cup of tea. But what I don’t understand is how so many people just ignore the pointlessness of this entire series. The producers of this realize that they don’t have to put a lot of effort into the writing, the character designs. They also realize that changing too much from the original series will cause fans to look away, so a lot of the characters from Sunshine!! are rehashes of characters from the original Love Live!. The main girl looks like a younger sister of Hanako, her friend looks like a younger version of Kotori, we have a chuunibyou-ridden girl with long, dark-blue hair, a shy, musically-gifted red-haired girl, and a rich, tall, blond-haired girl. My God, they weren’t even trying to be original.

“You know what? Let’s also have a student council president that somehow hates school idols. Absolutely despises them. Let’s have the main girl walk in for the third time with no qualifications to create an idol club. Let’s have the student council president suddenly go on a spiel about how Muse is the greatest school idol group ever to exist. Wait I thought she hated school idols? Oh, and the main girl accidentally presses on the intercom button while she’s doing this. After all of that, cut away to several hours later next to where the main girl lives. What was that? We just had a bit of character introduction and left it hanging? Did we just cut away from that with literally no reaction shot, no discussion, no other line of dialogue? Are we now pretending that that scene doesn’t even exist?”

What I described above actually happens.

In conclusion, there is no reason to watch this series. It’s not going to have any engaging conflict, no interesting or original characters. It’s just a promotion for more Love Live!-related merchandise. If you’re a fan of Love Live! and you want more of it in your life, then go nuts. Watch this. I don’t care. I’m not saying you’re a bad person if you watch this, but I am saying that you should be mindful of what this series actually is.

Why I Dropped Amagi Brilliant Park

I’ll be totally honest here: the only reason I began watching this was because I’m a huge KyoAni fanboy and I saw a funny GIF of it somewhere on the Internet. I was expecting a lot from Kyoto Animation to provide a funny, charming, and lasting series like they’ve managed to do several times. However, 8.5 episodes in, I was wondering why I kept watching after nothing made me laugh for several episodes.

Cover art for Amagi Brilliant Park

Amagi Brilliant Park (甘城ブリリアントパーク) takes place in an amusement park inhabited by strange beings. These beings come from the magical vague world of Maple Land, using the park as a way to generate life force to keep themselves alive. The loli leader of this group asks a high school boy to save the day, which he somehow manages to do through the magical power known as “being the protagonist”, where every single decision he makes, no matter how stupid it may be, ends up benefiting himself in the end.

The premise of this anime is certainly a striking one, so much so that it alone carried me through over half of the entire show. However, with any overused joke or undeveloped idea, the novelty fades quickly and the realization kicks in hard. This show essentially sets up a wacky premise, and instead of following a single, coherent story, decides to create many tangents of little, wacky plot lines, each with their own introduction, conflict, climax, and resolution. This happens every single episode. For something with such a short runtime, it’s bizarre how this was decided to be the most optimal structure, and by Kyoto Animation of all studios. Now for the overused jokes. Oh boy. A premise with vast amounts of room for expansion is flattened by the same jokes over and over again, not just within the show itself, but also relying on common archetypes found throughout a lot of other anime, manga, visual novels, etc.

I don’t like a single one of the characters, including Sento. The main character (don’t remember his name) is a complete asshat but keeps switching to comforting and considerate mode whenever the plot needs it. The trio with Moffle usually is at the butt of many jokes making it the redundant comic relief in a comedy show. They’re not funny. The same jokes with Moffle attacking MC (main character), the pick cat-thing being an idiot pervert, and the sheep-thing being a bully are used over and over again.

Episode eight in particular had the most useless conflict I’ve seen in a while. MC has to attend school, but he’s sick in bed, so the cancerous trio and Sento decide to dress up in a magical MC suit and take his place. First off, call in sick, you moron. Secondly, this is supposed to be about saving an amusement park from closing down, why in the hell do they need to worry about MC’s attendance? Finally, why does each person of this group get a turn inside the suit? Wouldn’t it make a million times more sense to have just one person do the job? Each character’s archetypes are (for the dozenth time) highlighted throughout the “wacky funny” moments of trying to interact with MC’s classmates. See, this is what happens when you become too analytical: stuff like this interferes with my enjoyment of shallowly-written moments.

In conclusion, this series had a striking premise that was barely used, it had annoying, unfunny archetypes that we’re supposed to call “characters”, and it abandoned all logic to try squeezing a laugh out of a situation. I do not recommend Amagi Brilliant Park to anyone.