Bungou Stray Dogs – 03

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Between its mixed bag of animation quality, comically abrupt advancement of the plot and introduction of the show’s main villain, and jarring shifts in tone, Bungou Stray Dogs 03 was a complete mess… Bad dogs!

In scene one, Atsushi learns more about last week’s fake-out bomber and his ‘sister,’ as well as Kuni-chan’s background as a math teacher. He also learns Dazai’s backstory is a huge secret and there is a reward for figuring it out, which prompts an entirely unfunny scene where Atsushi lists random occupations and Dozai cutely says nope to all of them.

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In scene two, everyone meets this week’s client, a knock-out blonde who’s company is troubled by ‘rag wearing’ persons up to no good in their alley. Dazai flirts around with the client until Kuni-chan beats him up and Atsushi and the lesser duo of last week are dispatched to help the client.

Also, Kuni-chan warns Atsushi to avoid Dracula at all costs.

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The second act is devoted to introducing Dracula, who it turns out is part of the dock mafia along with this week’s client. As the scene plays out, we lear about last week’s lesser characters, see their powers, and then witness them brutally murdered.

Then Atsushi turns into a Tiger and goes toe to toe with Dracula until Dazai shows up. They monolog at each other, explain that Atsushi has a 7 million Yen bounty on his head, and part ways amicably. Also, Dazai reveals he too was once a port mafia dude.

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Where do I even begin? Dracula’s sudden arrival felt absurdly rushed. Similarly, this show is way too goofy for Dracula’s violent murder of police officers (and subsequent bombing of the police station).

The simple fact Atsushi’s fellow Armed Detectives are probably still alive, despite being gunned down just proves my point: the stakes are not high enough and the show is not serious enough to make violent drama fit.

If it weren’t for Atsushi’s cool dodging gun-play early in the fight, this episode would have been a complete snoozefest.

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