Kimi no Iru Machi – 07

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While Haruto and Eba are visiting Kyousuke, his childhood friend Asakura Kiyomi rushes in and begs him to undergo surgery, which has a small chance of success but will kill him if it fails. Haruto and Eba think its his decision to make. Ultimately he chooses to get the surgery, but it fails and he dies, leaving everyone adrift.

Kiyomi is quickly introduced and is immediately unpleasant and volatile (giving Eba one of the most drawn-out bitch slaps in recent memory), but once Haruto is alone with her, she immediately becomes a more sympathetic character, who knows full well she’s being selfish, as she doesn’t want to lose Kyousuke, whom she loves. Like Haruto, her love is with someone else. They both take some solace in knowing their situation isn’t unique; in fact, it’s all too common.

This week Kyousuke dies in a bold but not unexpected move. The subtle transition to the reveal of his death hit hard (this show’s proving to be very good at that); we knew when Asuka let go of the umbrella that he was gone. After the sober funeral, Eba meets with Haruto to give him Kyousuke’s helmet, but she wonders if they’ll ever meet again, not encouraging for Haruto. All the emotions left in his late rival’s wake will be his true impediment to a future with Eba, along with his own grief.

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Rating:7 (Very Good)

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Kami nomi zo Shiru Sekai: Megami-hen – 08

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Haqua is attending a briefing at the New Hell Bureau of the Peace, when she asks the chief about the rumors that Vintage has infiltrated the Loose Souls Team. When she tries to return to earth, she’s arrested and thrown in jail. Back on earth, Diana has Keima assemble the released goddesses and show them Apollo/Kanon. They combine their powers to call to her, and Keima is drawn into a world created by Apollo, where she is praying to shift the fortunes of his town.

Keima has three days to find the last goddess. Based on past events he determines Chihiro to be the most likely host, and so chooses to conquer her first. He accepts when she asks him to be her date for the Festival Eve bonfire. He also asks Ayumi that it’s her last chance to get mad at him, and she doesn’t. That night Keima and Chihiro slink away from the fire to find a more private spot. Back in New Hell, Haqua is charged with treason as the Vintage infiltrator  Lune gloats.

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Both Chihiro and Ayumi like Keima, but only one of them likes him because the goddess she’s hosting restored her memories of his conquest of her. The other likes him because she really likes him, which means (to us at least) that whichever girl has those real feelings should still have them after the Goddess dilemma has been resolved. If Chihiro is the final host, then Ayumi is the one who really loves him. So…is Chihiro the final host? Keima is certainly operating under that assumption on the first of three remaining days before crunch time.

But we wouldn’t put it past this show to pull a twist on us and make Ayumi the host. There are certainly enough episodes left for another twist or two, so we’ll see. In any case, if the arc ends with neither of the girls liking him, that wouldn’t make sense to us…unless his choosing of the goddess girl makes the non-goddess girl fall out of love with him. It’s not like he’d be able to explain to her what he’s been through all season, after all.

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Rating:7 (Very Good)

Stray Observations:

  • Once the goddesses are all awake, they start fighting over Keima for their hosts’ sakes. Seriously gals, there’re other guys that exist in the world!
  • Diana/Tenri definitely sprouted wings in episode 4 after Keima apologized to her, yet here she is, still wingless. We guess they were just temporary wings…
  • Why did Haqua blurt out her suspicions when for all she knew, the Vintage infiltrator was there (and, indeed, Lune was right there)? We’re not that invested in all these silly New Hell politics, but are curious to learn who’ll rescue her.

Blood Lad – 08

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Liz returns home, but is confronted by Officer Beros of the Acropolis Police, who arrests Braz for illegally leaving Acropolis. Fuyumi’s kidnapper slips up while feeding her, and she rings the bell Bell gave her. Bell intercepts the kidnapper, who is her brother, Nell Hydra, who says he’s only running an errand for their mom. Staz arrives, but Bell lets Nell escape to Hydra with Fuyumi and then shoots Staz, throwing him in her grid room.

Jealous of Staz’s devotion to Fuyumi, Bell challenges him to a fight to decide if she’ll take him to her. When she’s overly cocky he nearly takes her bottom half off, and she must abandon all the clothing attached to it. Before he reads her diary, she surrenders, and takes him to Hydra. Staz apologizes for causing her to be uptight, but won’t apologize, because he sees himself not as the hero, but the “bad guy.”

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If that synopsis was too long, here’s the tl;dr version: Staz goes looking for Fuyumi and runs into obstacles; the biggest among them Bell. She likes him, and it pisses her off that A.), he doesn’t notice, and B.), he’s so fixated on Fuyumi, and C.), he considers Fuyumi a rare and one-of-a-kind “collector’s item,” not an equal partner Bell could be to him. Their battle proves they’re on pretty equal footing power-wise, and FWIW, we’d choose Bell over Fuyumi every time.

Their battle is also a wonderful exercise in absurdity, as Bell gets caught with her pants down (literally!) and Staz is riddled with bullets to the point of needing to be pixelated (unlike Bell’s ass). Staz freely admits he’s not sure why Bell is so erratic around him, but he also tells her she’s welcome to take it all out on him, because he can take it, unknowingly endearing him to her even more. Even as she leads him to her home where he’s sure to meet her brother and mother on the way to retrieving her rival in love, she’s determined to keep her feelings hidden.

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Rating: 8 
(Great)

Stray Observations:

  • Blood Lad’s character designs are relatively simple, but fun and expressive, and the characters’ outfits change often (Bell’s in particular), keeping their looks fresh.
  • Now we know that crazy land with the planetoids/laputas in the ED is Bell’s home, Hydra.
  • Braz’s arrest by Berros shows us that, indeed, most people don’t really like him, which isn’t surprising.
  • Fuyumi seems to be a cooperative hostage as usual, but when the opportunity presents itself, she wisely rings the bell Bell gave her, setting everything into motion.