End of Season Roundup

Basically, since I got behind on a bunch of these, figured I’d give a super short final impression before I get into next season’s stuff.

  • Akagi (Drama) – A drawn out game of Mahjong, but made fun through watching an old guy sulk a lot.
  • Chaos Dragon – An incomprehensible mess of an RPG with no story structure.
  • Death Note (Drama) – An adaptation that diverges from the original, but manages to be really interesting while doing so.
  • Gatchaman Crowds Insight – A Doctor Who episode spread out into an entire season.
  • My Love Story – A super adorable story of puppy love.

Akagi (Drama) – Episode 7

  • Akagi’s pushing his luck a little.
  • Washizu has the best sulky look.
  • Seriously, the actor who plays him is one of this series’ strengths.
  • Of course he has a death wish. He’s literally betting his life on these games.
  • Clearly he’ll win at this point, since I can’t imagine it not lasting the full amount.
  • I wish I could screencap Akagi’s tongue poking out.
  • I like the speculation.
  • Akagi has to lose here, structure-wise. Unless he makes the trade now that he’s got Washizu in debt.
  • Sure enough, he was focussing way too hard on Akagi.
  • The soundtrack is great.
  • Oh, they’re addressing the potential for trade. And, sure enough, Akagi’s like “nope”.

akagi7From this point, it seems most likely that Akagi dies, but I hope he gets some kind of knife in before he goes.

Akagi (Drama) – Episode 6

  • So, he’s going to die right now? That’s no fun.
  • Unless he agrees to play while still dying?
  • Or Washizu realises how empty it feels, but it seems like he’s too dumb to do that.
  • At least say Washizu lost his money.
  • Yes, he’s still alive through sheer force of will.
  • I mean, how else could it have ended? There’s a full game left.
  • Nice. Of course he had something extra, too.
  • This soundtrack is so unsubtle, I love it.
  • “Cheap, cowardly trick”. As opposed to your secret savings, which were totally above board.
  • So glad they didn’t cut it off too soon. The lapse in tension was unconscionable.
  • Bleed Washizu dry.
  • Seriously, I just want him damaged in some way. Even if it’s just “oh no, I am a dumb baby who can no longer get my kicks from regular gambling, and the money means nothing to my empty soul”.
  • He’s already dying, might as well go all-out.
  • I love how well the tension works.
  • Washizu is really overestimating what he has to lose to this guy who’s nearly dead.
  • Argh, one more game.
  • Yes, bleed him dry. I hate how clunky that is, but can’t help it.
  • I hope Akagi’s death wasn’t for nothing.

akagi6This show is far too easy to get into.

Akagi (Drama) – Episode 5

  • Akagi’s just like “nope, not putting this back”. He’s prepared to die either way.
  • I figured he’d bargain with Washizu for it, but apparently not.
  • Honestly, the lung cancer and emphysema aren’t going to give him a very long life regardless.
  • Surely bringing out his extra savings is cheating? Unless he’d give Akagi some of his blood.
  • Trying to set up elaborate hands is dumb when it means Akagi can play almost anything before then.
  • He’s also far too focused on his own hand. No way that’ll backfire.
  • Sure enough, Akagi’s talking about how Washizu hasn’t noticed his own luck.
  • Hm. Is this where he’ll fail?
  • 100cc is better than 400, at least.
  • One-track-mind there, Washizu.
  • Suddenly, organ music.
  • Down to the wire, I guess?
  • I think my skepticism is that there’s a whole other game left.
  • 80cc is even better than 100, but I doubt that’s going to happen.
  • Hm.
  • Washizu, you are not a prophet. If you were, you wouldn’t be playing Mahjong to lose all your money.
  • Curious to see whether Akagi tries to bargain or not. Hard to tell, with a game left.

akagi5This show is really good at tension, even if you don’t understand the details of the game that well.

Akagi (Drama) – Episode 4

  • I just can’t imagine the crazy expressions working in live action. They try their best, though.
  • I love the way the tiles sound.
  • So at what point does Washizu start getting worried?
  • Ah, he still thinks he can claw his way back. That’s no fun.
  • Him standing in red shadow on the edge of a cliff is great, though.
  • Still love how even if you don’t know the game, they make sure you know the stakes.
  • To the point of actually making the game seem fun.
  • The old guy is so great.
  • “The demons who rule mahjong”
  • Meanwhile Akagi’s sick of his bullshit.
  • Just pick a damned tile.
  • “The incarnation of God.” Holy shit, the hubris.
  • He looks so sulky. It’s great.
  • Washizu, there is such a thing as overthinking it.
  • Hahaha, he’s throwing the tiles around like a child. This is beautiful.
  • These are some brave words from a guy with half his blood in vials on a drinks trolley.
  • Akagi’s whole thing isn’t building himself up, which is why he’s winning.
  • He’s also not afraid of death just yet.
  • Washizu’s giving up?
  • Ah. Figured.
  • Now’s the point to start thinking about trading blood back, maybe. If he doesn’t get a second wind.
  • Also, yes, I want to see him worried.

akagi4Still digging this, even though it’s not quite crazy yet.

Akagi (Drama) – Episode 3

  • Please show him biting the tiger in anger again.
  • Well, I heard it, anyway. I think the show may have peaked there, but who knows. Maybe he’ll hategrind it later.
  • More blood already.
  • And again more blood, while guys speculate and Washizu cuddles his tiger.
  • I like that Akagi is trying to bleed this guy dry of his money.
  • If he loses, he can trade then. He gains nothing by getting his blood back now.
  • Love this soundtrack.
  • Of course, he gains nothing if he dies, either.
  • Kid’s skin is nowhere near pale enough to be drained of blood.
  • So much speculation.
  • You can tell by the hushed speculation that Akagi’s not about to die yet. It’s like a Jojos fight.
  • Now other guy is realising his mistake in speculating too much.
  • Just in time for the soundtrack to imply he’s really in danger.
  • There’s a lot of tiles. One of them must be useless.
  • This guy is Speedwagoning hard.
  • Washizu, shut the hell up.
  • Haha, Akagi just turned it on him.
  • The cop doesn’t understand what happened at all.
  • “The heavens literally sent this tile to make Washizu win.” Well, I guess that explains the art history stuff.
  • Haha, he’s sitting there and being fanned by guys in white.
  • Washizu just threw a tantrum. Oh dear.

akagi3This show is way easier to watch than I thought it would be.

Akagi (Drama) – Episode 2

  • Recap time, in case you forgot how slow the pacing was.
  • I like how I don’t need to know much about the actual game, because everything’s narrated like it’s a Jojo fight.
  • Actually, it’s pretty much exactly like the first D’arby fight.
  • Does make it an odd choice for live-action, though. Half the fun of the artist’s style is in the intense expressions (and pointy/square features).
  • Ageism from the old dude.
  • Followed by some very homoerotic fine art. Not sure whether that’s symbolic or not.
  • I like that the partially transparent tiles make the guessing necessary and plausible.
  • Haha, he dances at the idea of draining more blood. That’s the sort of thing I was thinking of.
  • This dramatic music sting with slow motion. Good grief.
  • I like Akagi’s smirk.
  • You can tell a bunch by the tone of their commentary.
  • Careful, old dude.
  • He still won, right? Stop obsessing over it.
  • And Akagi immediately says the same thing.
  • Oh good. He’s not accepting the return of his blood.
  • He wants to destroy this guy, even if he does have to die himself in the process.
  • He bit the tiger, and then it cuts to more of the fine art. I… okay.

ad2I shouldn’t enjoy this as much as I do, since I don’t know the rules, but it’s still entertaining.