Kuromukuro, episodes 1-2
- All I knew about this show before I watched it was that it somehow involves schoolgirls and mecha. The first episode is fairly languorous at first, following Yukina as she tries to return her mother’s phone to some kind of high tech government facility. Schoolgirls and mecha, so far so good, and then — NAKED SAMURAI ENCINO MAN FIGHTING A ROBOT IN SINGLE COMBAT. Strong finish.
- Given the premise, I was wary that this would be a steaming pile of fanservice, but actually it pointedly avoids it. When a group of characters fall on the floor, skirts drape to cover things up, and then the extended nude scene features the male newcomer. That was a nice change of pace.
- In the second episode, some of the backstory is fleshed out. There was a princess, Kennosuke wants to protect her, the “demon” mechs arrived from outer space, he was frozen in time, and now he’s awakened when the aliens have returned with their machines (it’s not clear yet whether they are sentient robots, or if they have pilots).
- I like the mechanical designs so far. There are no flying mechs so far, so this is more Patlabor than Gundam or Macross. They come in a range of scales from a little taller than a human to a little taller than an office building, but they all wield glowing katanas and fight like martial artists. I’m looking forward to building some models…
- Netflix is showing this week by week in Japan with English subtitles, but apparently will release the full dubbed season in other regions at an unspecified future date. I don’t understand why they’re restricting access to the subbed version, given that there are plenty of other ways to access it without paying. And if you have a Netflix subscription, their geo-blocking is… uh, not great, if you use the right DNS service.