Way hay, we’re here in another Irregular Reconnaissance: Anime and that means some unscheduled anime mini-reviews.
If this is your first Irregular Reconnaissance: Anime then be assured that you’ll find synopsises in here but very little in the way of spoilers.
In this article, we take a first look at Netflix’s new(ish) March Comes in Like a Lion which is an anime based on the manga by the mysterious Chica Umino. Umino is probably best known for Honey and Clover but is barely known at all, as she writes using this pen name.
We also look at some much older anime, that have been available to western audiences for much longer such as Schoolgirl Strikers and catch up with shows Muhyo & Roji’s Bureau of Supernatural Investigation that will be getting a second season.
Most of all, Irregular Reconnaissance is better with more than one scout reporting in. If you’ve any spoiler-free recommendations for anime to watch, or to avoid, let us know in the comments below.
March Comes in Like a Lion
Episodes 1 to 3
Well, I’m not sure what to make of the opening episodes of Netflix’s March Comes in Like a Lion and I think that’s because the main character is so hard to fathom.
Our hero, a Shogi expert, seems to be having a silent, nervous breakdown or is struggling with spectrum issues. His whole family died in a car crash, and the young man is pretty much isolated as a result.
The main exception to his isolation is his Shogi matches and three sisters who seem to have adopted them. They are also struggling with the loss of their mother.
So, it’s a keep watching for me because it’s a well-told story, but the anime is on shaky grounds because I’m not sure this is a story I want to invest my precious free time into.
Hi Score Girl
Episodes 9 to 15
Gosh, I’m giving Hi Score Girl an upgrade to the “good” rating. It’s got me.
It’s still a love triangle, but all the characters are vibrant and exist outside it. We still get to see a range of classic computer games in non-anime-how-they-looked reveals, which is fascinating, and the plot kicks along at a steady pace.
There’s the thing. The Hi Score Girl contender #1, the first one we meet, is having it rough. It may seem like she has everything, money, power and talent, but her family life is a stern prison.
When I said “It’s got me”, I mean that I find myself urging the characters on to come to the rescue and help her out. Contrast that to the mini-review I’ve just written for “March Comes in Like a Lion”. I’m not sure I care there, here I do.
Muhyo & Roji’s Bureau of Supernatural Investigation
Episodes 1 to 4
I was the trailer for Season 2 of Muhyo & Roji’s Bureau of Supernatural Investigation that caught my attention.
The premises is straightforward; two misfit young men run an exorcism consultancy and get involved in people’s drama to rid them of spirits. Getting rid of hostile spirits is a matter of law, the spirit is doubtlessly broken a supernatural law for a human to become aware of them in the first place, and reading the riot act summons a spell or demon that takes care of the problem.
It’s early days into the show yet, and we’re just introducing the third of the three friends, except this fellow seems to have gone mad through the drama of it all. He’s turned evil.
The problem, though, is the weird character design of the main character. Our hero looks like an egg with a quiff. The show has already joked about this, but it doesn’t solve the weirdness.
I’m sticking with it for now, but I’ve some concerns.
Episodes 4 to 13
Sorry to say, this anime amount to much. The first few episodes are probably the strongest.
I’d describe the show as a wholesome, all-girl team, kick-alien-butt response show except one of the rival friendly groups are dressed entirely in bikini armour. It’s fan service where none was wanted.
The plot gets oddly complex as teams change sides, the nature of time and reality itself gets a bit malleable, and the BBEG is about as menacing as meddling but a well-intended neighbour.
The 8th Son? Are You Kidding Me?
Episodes 7 to 12
I’m glad I ignored the initial poor reviews over at Crunchyroll and watched this. The show’s star rating as since surged to a strong 4.5/5 and, if anything, that’s perhaps a little high.
Our hero is born with his modern-day Japan memories into the body of the 8th son of a rural and impoverished family of nobles. He, though, has magic.
Quickly grabbing the attention of genuinely powerful nobles, we have a short series of worth-proving adventures, including a spell at war and building a group of friends.
Yes, this group is dominated by pretty girls, but it’s not a harem anime. There are actual male friendships on display here.
Sadly, the ending a weaker than I hoped. I’m not sure if you could call it foreshadowed or just forced.
That’s it for this Irregular Reconnaissance main scout report. If there are any recommendations you have, for hits or misses, please let us know in the comments below.