The GDB Power Rankings: Summer 2017, Week 4

Buggy

No official rankings for me this week since I’m mid-move and haven’t been able to keep up as a result, but I wanted to weigh in on at least a few episodes from this week.

I continue to be increasingly taken by Fastest Finger First, which took some time this episode to work on fleshing out its compelling characters a little more. Knight’s & Magic, on the other hand, I’m a bit worried about. The seeds of some greater political intrigue have started being sown, and I worry it’ll just end up detracting from the simpler but more enjoyable story of Ernesti revolutionizing the world through pure enthusiasm for mecha.

Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul and My Hero Academia, the two spring leftovers I’m watching, also both had fantastic episodes. My Hero Academia had a strong climax to the Stain arc. Stain remains my favorite villain from the manga, and seeing how all the heroes reacted to being confronted with his twisted but noble ideology made for a chilling climax. On the complete other end of the scale, Virgin Soul felt like it managed to inject some levity and story progression back into the show after an arc that was a bit on the slow and heavy. Nina’s relationship with Charioce has become one of the big draws of the series, and an episode devoted almost entirely to resolving their inner conflicts about it was both welcome and satisfying.

 

Urtag

  1. Princess Principal (ep3)
  2. Made in Abyss (ep4)
  3. My Hero Academia s2 (ep17)
  4. Kakegurui (ep4)
  5. Tsuredure Children (ep4)

Once again Princess Principal has another strong episode that was extremely enjoyable. The introduction of Beatrice was interesting with how her body works. Made in Abyss has yet another interesting episode as we start our journey into the Abyss and meet some of the creatures that reside in it. This weeks  My Hero Academia wraps up the Stain arc in a very satisfying way. The show is continuously good every week and seems to keep getting better.

Kakegurui keeps it insanity up as it keeps introducing new characters while keeping it interesting. I have yet to be bored while watching an episode. To wrap up this week we have Tsuredure Children which brought back a couple from the first episode and introduced even more new ones. Many shows are back this week with 18if being left out which didn’t have as strong as an episode this week as last.

LittleCrow

  1. My Hero Academia s2 (ep17)
  2. Kakegurui (ep4)
  3. Welcome to the Ballroom (ep3)
  4. Princess Principal (ep3)
  5. Made in Abyss (ep4)

What is hype may never die! With an episode that truly lives up to its title (“Climax”) MHA has been nothing but stellar in its second season. Endeavor in action is as awesome as it should be, and seeing heroes other than All Might in action always adds depth to the universe.

Kakegurui never fails to entertain, even with an episode comparatively slower than its first three. Ending in absolute beautiful fashion, you’d have to be an absolute BAAAAAAKA to not be watching such a ridiculous show.

Welcome to the Ballroom went a route I somewhat expected, and handled it neatly and believably. Our MC is no pro, but he’s passionate and does have a natural talent for dancing, despite his fresh and amateur ability, that really shines through in his impromptu debut moment. The drama is already starting to unfold, though, which does not bode well for our MC.

Princess Principal has taken an interesting route given it’s only thirteen episodes long: cold open first episode, dropping us right in the midst of the action, then rewinding time for the last two episodes to introduce us to our cast and showcase why they’re working together. Thankfully, Studio 3hz seems to he trying to pack as much story as possible into each episode (without overloading them) and has given us a good mix of answers and questions. We have one more character to introduce, and ten more episodes to explore the greater narrative plot.

I don’t understand how everyone has just let an 8-year-old girl essentially commit suicide in Made in Abyss. Is there any reason for her to be so young? She could easily be a teenager of 15-16 years and it would still fit the narrative. A teenager of that age is much more capable than an eight-year-old! Still, my issues with the narrative aside, the actual writing and story are fantastic, giving us just enough to whet our appetites while teasing us with the inevitable dessert to come. Only time will tell what happens, and for now I will continue to watch this gorgeous show week after week.

 

Taluun

  1. Welcome to the Ballroom (ep4)
  2. Made In Abyss (ep4)
  3. Action Heroine Cheer Fruits (ep3)
  4. Magical Circle Guru Guru (ep3)
  5. Altair: A Record of Battles (ep4)

It’s good to finally be out of the introduction portion of Welcome to the Ballroom. Finally being able to see all the different dances and have Tatara actually be involved in dancesport is exciting and I look forward to what the new couple will bring to the table. Made in Abyss picks itself up a bit this week with them actually descending into the abyss. I loved how jarring the monsters were that they encountered as it helps further distinguish just how otherworldly the abyss is.

Action Heroine Cheer Fruits recovers from last week’s episode with a much more energetic episode. The conflict between Akagi and her old friend Shimura in the first half of the episode was endearing to see; high stakes enough that it pulls you in but low stakes enough that it seems melodramatic. The great fight scene in the end was just icing on the cake. Magical Circle Guru Guru was a blast to watch again. The jokes continue to land and the characters remain adorable.

I’m glad to finally be able to put Altair: A Record of Battles on this list as it’s been just barely missing it every week. This weeks additions of a new mentor for Mahmut was a very nice improvement as he obviously has a ways to go before he is a good leader but the lectures he was receiving from Zaganos very often didn’t actually address the issues. Love and Lies missed the mark this week as they didn’t expand on the characters motivations much. Additionally the ministry agents having to ask Yukari where Misaki lives was a bad move given they knew that he was in the park the night he got his notice.

 

Watashi

  1. Princess Principal (ep3)
  2. Welcome to the Ballroom (ep4)
  3. Tsuredure Children (ep4)
  4. Kakegurui (ep4)
  5. A Centaur’s Worries (ep3)

Princess Principal is still the best show ever made. Action focused compared to last week. Beatrice is very whiny, but understandably so, still lovable due to her past. Three episodes, three different styles of costume design. Excellent. Caverite shown off a bit more. Spy tools really come out and are all incredible. Clever writing, a beautiful set piece, this series has it all. I want Dorothy to infiltrate me!

Is Welcome to the Ballroom worse than the manga? Hell yeah. But I’m certain I’d be captivated if I had never read it. This episode uses the tango, the most intense and dramatic of the five dances in competitive Ballroom to highlight the seriousness and the fiery passion that characters have inside them. It is around this point where my favorite element of this series begins to formulate, that is, the significance between the relationship between the male and female dancer. Hyoudou wants Shizuku. Gaju wants Shizuku. Tatara danced with Shizuku.

All of my favorite couples come out in full force in this week’s Tsuredure’s Children. All four stories are cute, charming, and lovable, which is what this series does best. It, more than a large number of romances in anime, has made me want nothing more than for these couples to perfectly happy together.

This episode/point in the manga is roughly where I think A Centaur’s Worries starts really standing out from a lot of other monster-girl series. The most obvious comparison is Everyday Life with Monster Girls. There’s this huge emphasis in that series to have a new species of monster girl every so often. Lamia, Centaur, Mermaid, Harpy, and so forth. However, here, we can see children of the established series found throughout this world, but more importantly, half-breeds. Similar to how hair color is determined, it seems as though children are just naturally one of the species between the two parents. Extremely solid episode that is nauseatingly warm-hearted. Shino is somehow the cutest thing all week.

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