Sell Me in 20 Minutes: Glasslip, Argevollen, and Locodol

Probably just finished one of the worst weeks of the year. It was hell on earth at work, plus the way Shueisha handles releases, splitting up the “official” release date with the one that oricon actually counts, has added probably 2 hours to the 8-hour task of redoing all 2011/2012 manga boost data. And a side-project I’m working on after finally getting tired of not actually writing about manga took up most of my time since finally getting off yesterday.

But Summer’s finally here, which is cool. Just finished getting caught up with all the material I plan on watching. Out of the four shows I’ve seen so far, Free s2 was predictably solid (though the comedy feels a little more raunchy than s1), one was bland as could be, two others were interesting enough to keep up with.

Glasslip’s first episode was decent, but not particularly remarkable, a base hit single to Tiger and Bunny’s grand slam. Introducing the main cast by just putting their names on the screen definitely felt kind of forced, as did some of the melodrama in the conversation between the female lead and the transfer student in the scene with the chickens. The fact that the main character was sketching chickens was one of the more interesting parts of the episode – I hope the show can delve more into whatever passion the characters are into. Too, it feels like it still has tons of room to develop/questions to answer (the obvious future/we’re ripping off Takano Ichigo spiel the PV material was hinting at, why the glasses girl can’t go to festivals but can go on mountain hikes, etc.). I was buying high on it before the season, and I feel like it could do a lot to make the the relationships more dynamic with another week’s worth of development, so I’ll keep watching it for now.

I don’t have much to say about Argevollen, other than that it came off as extremely derivative, writing; arrogant higher-ups making war for transparent financial reasons and a flat main character in a mecha show who stumbles his way into the latest, greatest model. The only thing that was somewhat surprising was that the protagonist was a terrible mech pilot despite being stationed near the front lines of a major conflict as a mech pilot. The action also had one of the less inspired uses of 3D mecha I’ve seen to date. I can’t see myself continuing this one.

Locodol as a late-night chaser wasn’t too shabby, though. It was a fairly straightforward piece – girl needs money and gets roped into a job she normally wouldn’t have done. There was a moment when they were doing mc duties and just sort of talking with the audience that made it feel organic, neatly avoiding both awkward and instant superstar extremities. I always dig it when shows get lightly musical as opposed to going flashy, full-frills concert mode.* The fact that the musical scene included a slow pan over a detailed background was sort of just a fun personal-appeal bonus. I like the lead and the talent show vibe the show carries, and I’m gonna keep watching for another week.

*Kanamemo will always be the GOAT in that regard.

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