Returning from an extended break in adaptations, Saiyuki Reload Blast busts in after nearly a decade of OVAs succeeding its televised adaptations. I personally remember watching the first televised series Gensomaden Saiyuki back when it came out and I guess I could say I enjoyed it but looking back it, they stuffed a ton of yaoi undertones that the original manga is rather infamous for. Series loyalists will remember that this adaptation also went anime original, as with many series at the time, and it returned to canon adaptation material back with its next two seasons of Reload and Gunlock. I personally never bothered to watch too much of either but lets talk about the return of the old four and their perpetual quest to kill the demon lord.
Working on it
I haven’t talked about this too much but apparently MvC: Infinite had terrible sales in Europe and I’m quietly hoping that the US release isn’t all that spectacular either. Ever since I laid eyes on the announcement trailer, I’ve had nothing but disappointment brewing in my gut and I wasn’t off from the general opinion that MvCI is quite the tragedy when it came to nearly everything but its gameplay. Admittedly, I do like some of the changes that it made to some characters. Dormammu had some really nice updates to his quality of life to make his spell charging easier and Ultron was a character that I’ve always liked but everything else, man. It’s quite a damn shame. On another gaming note, Trails of Cold Steel 3 is close to release and I already spoiled myself 8 hours through a gameplay stream and it hardly spoiled me on anything as of yet, it’s looking quite fantastic so far with the smooth UI and fast transitions.
Let’s not get too carried away from here since it’s still Souls music time. Much like how the tolling bells of the Abyss Watcher’s theme reflected their connection to Artorias, Aldrich’s theme is reminiscent of Gwyndolin’s own. This shouldn’t be all that much of a surprise since Gwyndolin is seen in Aldrich’s boss fight, being eaten alive and having the top half of his body being used by the Saint of the Deep himself. While a darker rendition of Gwyndolin’s theme plays, we ran into Aldrich digesting Gwyndolin and we take the fight to him while he fends himself with Gwyndolins magic bow and a few other familiar looking weapons and abilities. Namely the gravelord sword that functions as a staff as well as the lifehunt scythe ability. While Aldrich was hyped up from the beginning, I mostly found the fight as a simple mad-dash to clobber him up a couple times before he reappeared in another part of the stage while dodging all the projectiles he threw, a tougher version of Crystal Sages almost.
So as it turns out, it only needed one episode of angry and anxious exchanges between Bakugo and Deku for them to beat All Might’s challenge. I guess that decision definitely makes sense since the episode preview showed that scene with Tomura and Deku and I feel that’s as poetic as an ending you could do as far as this adaptation goes. Good choice, it’s something I completely forgot.
Like always, it’s time for the seasonal round up so look forward to it.
Hajimete no Gal ended last week but I really didn’t feel like talking about it on its own big post but I just might end up having to do exactly that. I always thought the idea of the series outpacing its own manga would lead to something strange and sure enough, it apparently went original in a lot of factors. Instead of voicing all my opinions here though, I’ll just make something small later this week talking about it. I’ve been eyeing some other MTG decks that I want to make but goddamn these prices. I haven’t bought any figures for nearly a year, and honestly, a nearly full deck costs as much as a single figure but why do I feel so stingy with prices now of all times?
Anyways, continuing with our foray into the Lords of Cinder, this week’s theme is that of Yhorm, who’s a bit of a mixed bag. Yhorm harkens back to Demon’s Souls in that he’s mostly meant to be defeated by the use of the Storm Ruler, a weapon that one can loot at the foot of his throne and much like the Demon’s Souls blade of the same name, its weapon art can be used to kill Yhorm in a few hits. Not doing it this way means you’re in for quite a long boss fight as Yhorm, being an enormous giant whose appearance is reminiscent of the faceless giants in DS2 (except Yhorm actually has a face, scarred even), takes forever to kill. Yhorm’s backstory is interesting and, like the other Lords of Cinder are related to NPC quest lines, but I wish I could say the same for his zone, the Profaned Capital. It’s an extremely empty level that begs to be completed but oh well, each entry in the series has THAT portion.
So I finally figured out that this would end on Episode 38 so we only got two more episodes to go. I can say that I’m agreeing with the decision to split these tests up into singular exams instead of constantly switching back and forth between them. It makes perfect sense for the main duo of the series to have two full episodes to tentatively settle their differences. For the millionth time, I’ll be lamenting where the series ends off for the adaptation but just you wait anime-only fans, you’ll be thinking the same thing once a third season hopefully comes around.
Way late because I was too focused on Magic the Gathering. I apologize for the tardiness because I actually have some fun things to say this week. After last week’s Hajimete no Gal, I got a bad taste in my mouth with how stupid the protagonist was acting and generally had to admit the series wasn’t all that entertaining so I decided to expand my love-com viewing habits and moved onto another series. The only hint I’ll give is “misunderstandings” and while that term might be too broad for the genre, there’s a heaping load of it in the series I picked up this season. That honestly might be the only clue you need.
Anyways, we move onto to the big spotlight themes with the first Lords of Cinder we face deep within Farron Keep, the Abyss Watchers. Also known as the Undead Legion, the Abyss Watchers were an enormous company of warriors that partook a blood oath with an ancient wolf to follow in their “master’s” footsteps and purge any and all traces of the Abyss from kingdoms. Their status as lords was considered as a group as their souls were linked and melded with that of their old master and when they gave themselves to the fire, they did so collectively. When the bell of awakening tolled, the Abyss Watchers neglected their duties as Lords and returned to their keep where they engaged in endless battle against the Abyss, which had ironically taken root in their own ranks. It’s the most blatant homage to the legendary Artorias but no matter how you look at it, the Abyss Watchers were downright cool as all hell.
These examinations are actually going faster than I initially thought, but even then, there’s only 1 or 2 episodes left. It’s quite the packed episode until we hit the real examination between the wonder duo and All Might. There wasn’t anything mind-blowingly well done about the episode since it’s exactly what I expected but I guess it was decent to see one of the more popular pairings of Todoroki and Yaoyorozu take root here.