The Weekly Backlog – January 20, 2014

I can now confirm that I’ve gotten myself in way over my head with all of the new series that I checked out this season, but somehow I’m still plugging along with my DVD and streaming anime backlogs. Of course, the streaming backlog is probably going to grow since there’s no way I’ll be able to keep up with everything I’m watching this season unless I start dedicating more time to anime. With a stack of good books (and a wonderful husband) also jockeying for my attentions, it’s not very likely that more anime time will be added to my schedule any time soon. Note to self: show more restrain during the spring season.

Goal: Watch 2 Episodes of Nobody’s Boy Remi
Result: Success!

With Vitalis’ return, the warm happy life on the Swan is over for little Remi, and it’s back to the hardship of the traveling entertainer’s life. It almost serves as a respite from the softness that I had enjoyed, since Remi is pretty much just a tale of hardship at its core. I was pretty hard hit when the next tragedy struck–it was carefully plotted out and for once wasn’t due to human cruelty. That just made it all the more sorrowful. I appreciated that episode 21 ended on a more uplifting note to help ease the losses from episode 20. While it’s certainly melodramatic, the show really does capture human emotion extremely well.

Goal: Watch 2 Episodes of SKET Dance
Result: Success!

After a streak of episodes that had me reaching for the remote due to bored, I finally found some amusement in Roman’s manga concoctions as well as the goofy “masked love” tale that came along in episode 35. The show really does much better when it isn’t ratcheting in a morality tale and instead just goes for goofy comedy. I am realizing that with the exception of Switch’s origin episodes, I don’t think I’d care to rewatch any episodes in this series. That’s not to say I’m not having fun or don’t want to finish the show, but it’s definitely a once and done sort of series for me.

Goal: Watch 2 Episodes of Le Chevalier d’Eon
Result: Success!

While watching episodes 9 & 10, I realized just how well the show portrays characters of both sexes without drawing extreme attention to itself. While Lia is the kick ass-type of heroine, the other female characters are also extremely important but extremely diverse in how they work with the world. Elizaveta’s use of a coquettish personality is simply to deflect concerns over her decision to build up a a new parliament. D’Eon’s fiancee embodies the ideal of devotion, while at the same time not just sitting about moping but rather continue her work as she keeps her worries to herself. The same with many of the other women, they’re complex and don’t fit one archetype. Even the most “conniving” is really just doing what she can to save the country she loves. It shouldn’t be so surprising, but sometimes women in anime come off as a bit flat and are either weak or strong with no in-between ground. It’s refreshing to have a show where regardless of the character’s sex, they’re generally more than a caricature.

Goals for the Week of January 20, 2014

Watch 2 episodes of Nobody’s Boy Remi (ep 22 & 23)
Watch 2 episodes of SKET Dance (ep 36 & 37)
Watch 2 episodes of Le Chevalier d’Eon (ep 11 & 12)

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