Category Archives: Gokukoku no Brynhildr

Gokukoku no Brynhildr – 13 (END)

Man, this is the last Brynhildr blog I’ll be making until the second season. Much sadness! 3 gokukoku 8 me.

So how was this finale? Honestly – lukewarm. It could have been better – that is not to say it wasn’t salvagable to some extent. Let’s start at the best of places: the beginning (please kill me).

I was surprised (Even knowing that this is Brynhildr) that they killed Kotori and Kazumi so easily. I applaud the show’s balls though – people don’t always have dramatic deaths when you think they should – sometimes making it really unexpected makes it feel more real. Kazumi is especially someone who I’ve grown to love throughout the show and I was really sad to see her so helpless. When she throws in love and her feelings regarding Ryouto, it does make your heart swell. Poor girl. Kotori’s death was much more sudden, as well. It could be argued, rather callously, that neither of their deaths even meant anything, as well – all fitting with Brynhildr’s constantly cruel motif.

That said, I did have a problem with it, but I had this problem with the entire finale – it was so rushed. Everything happened so goddamn fast and it felt like not enough attention was paid to what mattered. It’s unclear what feeling Chisato had for the valkryia, but apparently he actually did care for her and wasn’t just using her as a tool? I felt like this could have been expounded upon better, as it just felt random when it happened. The last fight between Kuro and the valkryia felt asspull-ish and wasn’t as impressive as I was hoping – I wanted a no-holds-barred superpowered smackdown, and I didn’t quite get that. I’d also like to know the reason Kuro has such potential in her – please explain show?

Let’s talk about the bad: What I did like was the organization that opposes the laboratory as well as the fact that Ryouto’s friend had made a discovery – excellent small bits of titillation that were presented with various degrees of success. In my opinion, the organization could have been presented as much more mysterious and less friendly – let them “disappear” after the events are done with the valkryia with Ryouto wondering “Who were those guys?” and you could have had an interesting conversation piece for the second season. As it is now, it comes off as a great idea with poor execution and presentation.

Also bad: the whole damn thing was so rushed. The last fight was disappointing. The last three minutes in particular were rushed even more than the rest of the finale. Kazumi lived – thanks for explaining? Her body was sawed in half. Guessing side pigtail girl saved her (Who you forgot about, by the way. Thanks Brynhildr.) That is to say nothing of the weird fantasy stuff like antimatter, which came out of nowhere. It was a bit underwhelming.

The good? It successfully completed the thought of the first season with Chisato, finished up his story, provided further insight on the world and a direction for the show to take from this point onward. Whether or not it was presented well is another story.

Brynhildr’s second half, while still solid, definitely wasn’t as strong as the first half – that said, the mediocre finale does hurt my opinion of it just a bit. I give the show a solid 7.5 or 8 – it could have been a 9.2 if it kept up the momentum in the first half however. I still love the show and look forward to any future installments. Second season soon, please?

Gokukoku no Brynhildr – 8 – 10

“Is this fucker dead? Haven’t seen his lame ass post anything in about a month!” ~ Everybody, circa 34,000 BC
“Brynhildr – so gokukoku it ain’t even funny” ~ nobody, ever (circa 12,393 BC)

Guess what? I’m not dead! All 30 some of you that follow me on twitter probably know that already as I’ve still been posting – but our Otakon AMV ruined my life for about the past month. I haven’t touched anime, this blog, or any games for about a good month now. It’s done now, so time to get back into the groove of things!

So where were we? Oh right, Brynhildr sans about a fucking month ago. So what’s happened in Brynhildr in my absense? Admittedly, not much! Kazumi essentially raped Ryouta though – that’s worth mentioning! Wanna know what else is worth mentioning? Such a situation would NEVER happen to a person like him in real life – ever. Ok, maybe I should be talking about more plot stuff (And I’m not talking about breasts (or am I? (No, I’m not))).

This week on Brynhildr we got unruly cops who are quite honestly, complete and total jackasses, government cover ups, mysterious mind reading magicians, and pettanko rape which was turned down somehow (Dude what are you doing?!?)

Let’s first talk about how Ryouta attempts to investigate the scene that was shown to him in the device Kuroha possessed. The following scene could only be described as downright terrifying when you think about it – it hits a little too close to home. All you need to do to be apprehended on trumped up charges is be in the wrong spot with no witnesses like Ryouta. The craziness and speed at which it happened were downright goddamn incredible – seriously, were they staking the place out? It’s clear that through some collaboration with the local government and the higher-reaching scientists responsible for the magicians, they want to keep something from being found here (I AM A GENIUS LOLOL).

Beyond bloody obvious observations, it’s nice to see a show treat the idea or thought of adult relationships and sex a little more seriously than most shows – it’s not simply a matter of “Haha, she wants him and she’s naked isn’t that funny” and also skips most (admittedly, not all) of the pitfalls we get in other shows in the same situation. Let me not understate how grateful I am for that. It’s also worth noting that this sort of approach is more in fit with the show’s overall feel and tone – this shit is serious, and so are the relationships amongst our heroes.

Let me take a brief moment to highlight something related to this show as well: the soundtrack, which I’ve only just listened to. It’s really fantastic, blending the somewhat grittiness you’d expect from a psuedo-horror show like this with the adrenaline filled action songs and soothing melodies in the more reflective songs. It’s a joy to listen to on its own and I’m happy I had the chance to watch an awesome show like Brynhildr.

So, how about Nanami huh? The big game in Brnyhildr is always making the most black and white of determinations – will they bite the dust or not? As it turns out (Melissa and I couldn’t agree), Nanami did in fact bite the dust to further sate Brynhildr’s not-so-discreet misery fetish. The dialogue and struggle between Nanami and Kuroha + the others was quite interesting – a bit of a shame that once she finally accepted others she was untimely kill-switched.

This still doesn’t answer our original question, however – what becomes of the fact that we’re unable to reproduce the magic pill that saves the lives of the magicians? The problem has to be dealt with sooner rather than later. If Kogorou was unable to find a solution I’m afraid we’ve hit a brick wall. Thankfully, I have a feeling that the plot won’t be killing our heroines anytime soon – who will it have to torture if it does?

The artists maybe? Depends on how meta you want things to get. Anyways, time to catch up with the remaining episodes!

Gokukoku no Brynhildr – 7

So it appears my assumption last episode was correct – they cannot reproduce the pills in a short time span. It seems as though it’s going to take them at least half a year to accurately reproduce the compounds present in the pill…quite problematic considering that they only have one month’s worth of material left before they croak. Watching Ryouta convey this info to our heroines was some hard stuff to watch, even if most of them pretended as though they never had their hopes up in the first place.

While I agree with Ryouta that this is a problem, can’t they just raid a couple more laboratories until they get what they need? Sure, it’s dangerous, but so is bleeding to death and I don’t think they have much of a choice. Something else to consider is that the last time they raided a laboratory the enemy knew they were coming – what’s to say it’s always going to be like that? Choose your targets carefully and utilize Kana’s forecast and they should be able to handle things without casualties. Of course, there’s always a limit to what you can get away with and I sincerely doubt it would work in succession, so get as much as you can as quickly as you can and run the hell on out of there. Give it six months and you will essentially have immortality.

A magician’s life is still far from glamorous, however – having to ingest a pill every 30 hours still sucks as well as having a power that sacrifices a small bit of your humanity every time you use it.

Ryouta is a good guy to have on your side though – he never gives up and unlike several other MC across anime – he’s not a complete moron. As a matter of fact, he’s quite bright and has saved our heroines on multiple occasions. While it seems they backed themselves into a corner this time, I’m fairly confident he will think of something. But whatever it is, it had better be relatively fast…time is ticking.

Gokukoku no Brnyhildr – 6

Sorry for the slow updates – I’m kinda on vacation, but that doesn’t stop me or Melissa from watching anime. What else do you do late at night when everything is closed? It is the weekend before memorial day after all! Although I must say that things have picked up today..Er, back on task!

Kotori, as I surmised last week, isn’t quite as evil as the manipulative camera angles and forced perspective made her out to be – she just smiles when under stress because that’s what she was trained to do. This episode does raise the point of what the girls will do when they run out of pills though – raid another laboratory, perhaps? What else can they do? It seems Routa has the idea that they can reproduce or artificially recreate the pills with the help of his scientist friend who’s help he enlisted at the end of the episode in what was an entertaining battle of science versus magic (seriously, I got excited watching this.)

Hopefully things pan out, but I suspect they will not be so easy – no doubt there will be some large hurdle to overcome before the magician’s magic pill can be flawlessly reproduced. No doubt Kuroha and the others will continue to be hunted down in the meantime, as well – I’d hate to see more than one A or AA magician chase after them. Given their previous encounters, I don’t think they’d survive without any heavy casualties.

I’m a bit surprised a AA didn’t have any hand-to-hand capabilities – this leads me to question how ranks among magicians are given out? How is it determined how strong they are – by the raw ability of their one forte? That seems a bit, uh, inconclusive and short sighted if so. The ranking system reminds me of the ranking system for espers in Index and Railgun – although there does seem to be rhyme and reason to those rankings.

Rankings are essentially “power levels lolol” but I still like talking about them. Curious to see how things will play out from here.

Gokukoku no Brynhildr – 5

Hey, since when has teleportation been a lame ability? Threatening is another story, but lame? It’s totally got uses!

The main ensemble discovers that our very mikuru-esque friend is a magician who apparently has the ability to teleport. But that’s not threatening, is it? Apparently it is: Kana has a vision that this girl will kill Kuroha at a nearby lake. But is that really the case? The deception here seems a bit too obvious: the girl is nearby where Kuroha lies dead, but she doesn’t explicitly see her kill her. What does that mean? Maybe she was just nearby while she got killed. Perhaps this whole train of thought is completely wrong and she’s just deceiving them. Want to know why I think otherwise?

She’s in the opening featured prominently alongside our main characters. A stupid reason? Perhaps on the surface, but would they really show a character in such a spot if she weren’t important or one of the main characters? I’m inclined to believe we’re being victim to a large deception here – perhaps she’s rebelled against those who sent her? Not sure – although she did look pretty evil at the end of the previous episode. It could just be the director wishing to shed some ambiguity on the situation though.

I must admit that the situation Kuroha jumped into towards the end of the episode was fairly frightening – but once their fellow magician was unceremoniously killed, she should retreat the fuck out of there. It’s highly likely THIS is the AA+ magician the man at the council spoke of rather than Kotori. The show is trying just a little too hard to make her seem suspicious – just enough that it makes me believe she’s innocent. The example made of the weaker unarmed magician was a grim reminder just how dangerous the world in Brynhildr actually is – people die, and if you’re weak, you’re dead. There’s no lame deus ex machinas to help you escape a situation that should kill you.

Looks like we’ve got quite a battle ahead of us next week – consider me excited. This show has been one of the very strongest this season.

Gokukoku no Brynhildr – 4

AA magicians are certainly no walk in the park – that much is evident. Last week we were left on a considerable cliffhanger. What happened to our heroes? The short version: Kuroneko died. Ryouta dies eventually as well by getting completely dismembered – but not before hatching a devious plan. It seems as though Ryouta has figured out that Saori’s ability is to rewind time, albeit at the cost of significant amounts of magic. He effectively forces her hand by stabbing her in the heart; not wanting to die, she does in fact rewind time to before the encounter.

The annoying side-effect of this change is that Ryouta has now forgotten that he’s seen the moles on Kuroneko’s bountiful chest and as a result, no longer draws the connection between Kuroha and Kuroneko.

I have to admit that I was never fooled into thinking that Saori was going to be able to join them. Perhaps in a different kind of show that might have been possible, but she was to be made an example of by Byrnhildr – “We have consequences and follow through with them.” Perhaps they could say it a little less robotically and more elegantly than that, too. They escape with two boxes of pills which lengthens their lives and allows them to breathe a sigh of relief for the time being.

Kana is actually not a cripple at all. This begs many questions that I don’t think we can even begin to speculate on: why lie about that? What are her intentions? Perhaps Kana feels that if she reveals she can move normally to Kuroneko, she will feel as though Kana doesn’t suffer as she does. Another theory is that Kana’s paralysis is intrinsically linked to their meeting or friendship in a way we aren’t aware of – and revealing that the very basis of such a friendship is false may cause her to do something self destructive. I’m assume – but I’m not positive – that Kana’s intentions in doing so are pure and for Kuro’s benefit. Time will tell whether or not I’m being a gullible idiot.

I must concede I was surprised that Kazumi lived. Our main cast is turning into the tsundere brigade now.

Anyone else surprised that Ryouta isn’t as beta as he’d like us to believe? I was surprised to hear him fantasizing in the mixed bath (sounds like anime-hilarity shenanigans!) about Kuro’s chest and how he’d like to touch it. Not that I can particularly blame the guy but I wouldn’t expect such talk from him. He also didn’t turn beat red at being “full frontal assaulted” by Kazumi. Uh, interesting. I’ve known that there is mixed bathing in Japan but it surprises me there aren’t a lot of, uh, “incidents” there.

Evil asshole man got chewed out for letting the magicians get their cocaine fix and as a result, sends a spy to infiltrate and destroy them. Loaded with tons of creepy “dead eye syndrome” and plenty of ufufufu, it seems as though we’ve got a real psycho on our hands here.

Gokukoku no Brynhildr – 3

This is my first blog post as an engaged man. It’s a bit interesting because how many engaged people own their own weeaboo-ass anime blogs? People be like “dude this guy ain’t gettin’ nuttin’!” Anyways, enough improper grammar and strange dialects, let’s get on with the review.

Brynhildr is back and this time it’s even MORE in the darkness than it was previously! OW THE EDGE! We learn this week that mages have a rough 30 hour period to survive between each of their magic pills or else they fall apart, melt, and die similarly to the girl we witnessed in the previous episode. The show paints this (unsurprisingly) as a rather painful way to die so I’m sure this is something we’d like to avoid.

Time is ticking though – a rather convenient (or inconvenient, depending on how you look at it) fire destroys their home and the last of their supply of pills – of which they only had about 6 left anyway. Worse, our favorite cripple had hers yesterday, so she’s very much on the verge of dying. She’s not upset about the fire and wishes to be killed rather than to “melt away”, but our MC hatches a plan to raid the facility for more of them.

It’s interesting how our MC isn’t such a dolt in this show. It’s nice to know you can rely on him to do more things than “act instinctively” and “get into danger and have Kuroneko bail your ass out”. I was also impressed when he memorized the bar code signature on the pills and thus recognized where they would be from. Sure, normally this would be a cheap writing deus-ex machina but something felt very genuine about it here. The show continues to evoke a feeling of near horror and helplessness in every situation.

This episode also introduced a ranking system to the mages. It apparently goes from AAA to C. Our heroes, unfortunately, are B ranked and a AA rank has been stationed at the facility. This is the horrible-why-do-I-like-this shonen tendencies shining inside of me but I freaking love it when ranking systems are introduced. Something about numbers and quantifying strength is so exciting, I wonder why?

Our heroes have no home and now they’re up against someone way out of their league. This episode ended with an ambigious “Someone got cut up and it looks like it’s Kuroneko but maybe it’s someone else haha maybe they’re all fine and the bad guy got sliced up – we won’t tell you!” kinda ending. Hey, you know the one.

It seems to be popular to bash this show on /a/ but I’m convinced it’s simply because they hate elfen lied. Honestly, I’m enjoying every bit of it so far, especially considering it took an “on paper” very, very typical plot but handled it with extreme proficiency.

Gokukoku no Brynhildr – 2

Brnyhildr (What a damn name, seriously) continues this week as we discover our heroine lives in Hinamizawa. Seriously, she lives in the most Hinamizawa-ass villiage I’ve ever seen. It’s so urban-japanese-back-woods that they may as well be clawing at their throat while they’re there.

…Except for the fact that no one actually lives there. Yup, this village is completely abandoned save our heroine and her paralyzed co-heroine. Yup, she’s the one who can actually predict the future, not Kuroha. Interestingly enough, she can’t speak without a text-to-speech synthizer on her left hand, as it appears the procedures to make them magicians left her paralyzed. Most obviously, the show is not attempting to paint the one’s who experimented and created magicians out of our friends in a sympathetic light (Sorry, Okabe; scientists are rarely sympathetic in anime). To make matters more extreme, Kuroha exclaims that if they were ever found, they would be killed in addition to MC-kun.

I’m a bit unsure as to whether or not Kuroha is actually Kuroneko, although her reaction in the previous episode where she told MC-kun to bugger off was suspect; she looked slightly upset. I theorize that it actually IS Kuroneko and she’s made every effort to make it so that MC-kun can’t tell who she is, because as she said herself; the closer he is to her, the more danger he is in. In fact, it’s doubtful they ever would have met if he hadn’t been fated to die in the avalanche the previous day.

Another theory? When she fell from the dam, she got amnesia and no longer remembers who she was; she was re-purposed as a magician. Or perhaps this is just a clone of her. The theories get wild and baseless from here. Nobody can really say for sure although my bet is on my first point.

I must concede I found it disturbing and upsetting witnessing one of their friends being liquidated by the science goons. It’s bloody obvious it was supposed to be sad but I found something particularly somber about it.

I find the dichotomy between our MC and Kuroha to be particularly more interesting that in your usual show with a similar setup (Boy meets girl, girl has powers, etc.) for some reason. Is it because Kuroha actually has a bit of dimension to her? Not sure, but it appears to be quite interesting. Hopefully the potential isn’t squandered.

I’m a bit disappointed they didn’t infiltrate the scientist-esque facility to save their friend; that would have led to some interesting circumstances (and likely, bad circumstances.) The show has thus far captivated my interest. Looking forward to the third episode next week.

Gokukoku no Brynhildr – 1

Ok, before I begin, I want to highlight the superficial process that enters my mind when choosing what anime to watch for a season. Step 1: Look at anime chart. What is Production IG/Bones/JC Staff doing this season? Oh hey, that looks cool! Step 2: Anything that does not follow into category one will be determined soley by badass art style, sequel continuation of show I’ve seen previously, or cool cover photo. Congrats, I am now the worst ever!

Brynhildr is actually pretty interesting for something that appears to be steeped in the ordinary if one were to judge solely by the description. This wouldn’t be fair. Enter our blonde haired MC who enjoys looking at the stars and is constantly haunted by the death of a childhood friend whom he blames himself for. He didn’t know her very well but was enchanted by her nonetheless; the only thing besides her supposed name (Which is Kuroneko) that he can recall is her strange moles under her armpit.

Enter the present where a girl very similar to the younger one I just described appears. So, what’s her deal? Apparently she isn’t Kuroneko despite the similarities and lo and behold – she’s a magician! Wait…this is sounding familiar. Yup, except this show is actually good; the first episode delivered enough intrigue to pique my curiosity. Why is “pique” only used in conjunction with the word curiosity? Can someone give me an example sentence that utilizes this word differently?

Apparently our Kuroneko lookalike is able to (directly or indirectly; it is uncertain) predict the deaths of others. This leads to an interesting first episode with a surprisingly dark twist. Where do we go from here? I feel as though we’ve barely gotten a full teaspoon worth of content from this show. My knee-jerk reaction is that it’s taken a simple, done-before premise and made it quite interesting. Consider me intrigued.

Oh, and apparently the man behind Elfen Lied made this. I’ve never seen Elfen Lied.