Date A Live III

July 6, 2019

Wait. What?! Right now?! It has been a long time since so I never thought Date A Live III would actually materialize. It has been 5 years since the second season graced the TV screens and 4 years since that Mayuri Judgment movie came out. You bet that I would have certainly forgotten a lot from the first 2 seasons and even more so I didn’t see the movie so I might have missed out something. Maybe. I guess when they bring back a seemingly popular series after being in absentia for very long, I suppose there must be something great or epic happening, right? I hope so.

Episode 1
We start off so as to remind us the harem Shido has accumulated. Yup, they made him some horrible looking stew. Eat up, Shido. Fortunately, they didn’t turn this into a cliché because despite its looks, it actually tastes good! Even Origami is here on a short notice to contribute. But this will have to continue later as it is mission time. A Spirit is detected at an abandoned park where a spacequake occurred 30 years ago. Shido goes down to the ground to find this Spirit, the witch-like Natsumi who seems to be quite interested in him (which girl wouldn’t?). So a series of choice pops up and oddly the Ratatoskr didn’t choose the ‘fondle your boobs’ option and chose the ‘I am lost’ route. Natsumi asks if she is pretty and of course he says yes. Natsumi is very happy but the AST is here. Natsumi uses her magic to turn them into… Harmless cute animal pyjamas? However she used too much magic and this causes some disturbance. In that short period, Natsumi reverts to her true form and she becomes angry that Shido saw her. She thinks he is playing dumb and vows to turn his life upside down. When Shido attends school, all the girls accuse him of being a pervert! Even his teacher Tamae and that gay friend, Tonomachi! Of course his twisted harem like Touka and Origami would’ve preferred him to give heads up before lashing out his carnal desires. It doesn’t take long for Shido to realize there is a doppelganger going around doing bad deeds to sully his name. Confronting his clone at the rooftop, of course she is Natsumi in perfect disguise. She wants Shido to leave this town forever and she’ll take his place. Because everyone will get confused if there are 2 of them around. Touka and Origami enter. Oh no. The game of who is the real Shido begins. However the duo can sniff out the fake. Touka can smell the difference while Origami has memorized Shido’s habitual patterns (like blinking) right to the dot! Sore loser Natsumi will not accept this defeat. But she’ll be back. A few days later, no movements were detected from her. But Kotori gives him a letter from Natsumi. She wants to play a game. There are photos of 12 people (his harem, including Tonomachi!). Natsumi is impersonating one of them and failure to guess which one will result in one randomly disappearing until there are none.

Episode 2
Westcott is in a meeting in London. The board accuses him about turning Japan into a warzone. They pass a resolution to dismiss him but all those in support have their hands chopped off!!! Shido, Kotori and Reine discuss about Natsumi’s challenge. Shido maintains that Natsumi isn’t the kind who will disappear someone forever. He remains positive if he guesses right, all will return. So the only way to tell who she is impersonating is to date them all. The first is Touka and the moment Shido accuses her as Natsumi, she becomes mad. Who the f*ck is this Natsumi girl???!!! Oh dear. Just stepped on a live wire. He manages to bluff her it is some lovely greeting. But something is still wrong with Touka. There is an all you can eat buffet and she’s not excited? She’s even holding back on her portions. When he learns a TV programme said guys don’t like girls who eat too much, Shido corrects her that he prefers girls who can happily eat lots of food. With that, Touka returns to being a glutton. I guess she’s not Natsumi. Next date is Yoshino and she’s quite happy to eat pancakes with him. Definitely Yoshino alright. I guess we skip his date with Tonomachi since Shido himself doesn’t even want to consider that as one. Night fall and his final date for today is Yuzuru. She asks the question if he prefers her or Kaguya more. Since he cannot decide, Yuzuru replies she would have been happy had he picked either. But his chicken answer disappointed her. She also hopes if Kaguya asks the same question, she wants him to choose her. She might also ask the same things she did. Kaguya might not look like it but she likes Shido as much as she does. It feels like some sort of death flag when Yuzuru hopes he will take care of Kaguya and then runs away. Next morning, Shido answers the door only to find a frantic Kaguya. Yuzuru has been missing since last night. As all the 12 candidates have a video watching over them 24/7 (creepy), they see footage on Yuzuru. At midnight, Natsumi’s broom absorbs her. Shido maintains his trust in Natsumi but will end this game soon.

Episode 3
Shido is now dating Kotori. He knows she is the real deal when he snatches away her ribbons and she turns into a tantrum throwing kid. We see snippets of Shido dating other girls (Tamae even going so far as to seek him to register their marriage!) and the highlight of those dates is with Kaguya. After lying on his lap, she starts crying since she is worried for Yuzuru. She begs for him to save her. I don’t know why previously Natsumi never gave him a chance to guess and just absorbed a few people. Now she is giving him that chance? Shido thinks hard and thinks it is Yoshino. Wrong answer. For the next few days, a few more people have gone missing. Until after Touka goes missing did it really start to hit Shido hard. The only ones left who haven’t been taken by Natsumi are Kotori, Origami, Kaguya and Miku. Shouldn’t they have done this in the first place after Yuzuru went missing? Gather everyone, tell them the truth and find a solution. Instead of waiting for this desperate hour. As they discuss, Origami finds this game weird. With the pool growing smaller, it makes their chances of answering correct increase. Why would Natsumi put herself in such a disadvantage? Time is up and Natsumi is generous to give Shido 3 tries. He picks Yuzuru since she was the first to go. Wrong answer. Origami ‘dies’. Can Kotori answer on his behalf? Because she chooses Tonomachi! Dead wrong. Kaguya gets it. Miku is so scared and leaves her hairpin with him if worst case scenario happens. She hopes he will remember her with this piece. But this hint suddenly has Shido realizing the true answer. He knows that despite Natsumi says she is impersonating someone in the 12 pictures, it doesn’t necessarily one of the 12 people. It must be someone that she is confident he will not ever pick. And that person is Yoshinon. Because this rabbit is just Yoshino’s hand puppet, he now remembers it was acting on its own (it should not be able to see what Yoshino can’t). Natsumi is devastated with his correct answer and all the missing people are spit back out. Since this disrupted her power. Now everyone sees her true form. She’s a loli? Being the sore loser she is, she will not let all of them get away. She turns all the girls into young children.

Episode 4
I guess Shido has got it tough now that he has to babysit little girls! Heck, they even follow him to school and claim they are his daughters! Of course Shido gives an excuse that they are his relative’s but I don’t think they want to believe him. But Natsumi is up to her mischief again. Randomly changing the outfit of the girls and even turning their house into some funfair. This though, enables Reine to pinpoint Natsumi’s whereabouts. Westcott gives Ellen the green light to go Spirit hunting. Her first target is Natsumi. So when Ellen and her AST girls corner her, Natsumi just turns them into lolis. However this doesn’t startle Ellen a bit as she slashes her. Natsumi becomes afraid in seeing her own blood and pleads for her life. Ellen is about to deal the finishing blow but Shido and his mini harem are here to save her. With Miku’s help, they mind control the other AST girls to hold Ellen down to buy time for their escape. Meanwhile Origami receives a call that she will be punished. Thanks for the heads up because this gives her time to escape from the agents. With Natsumi in custody, Shido goes to talk to her. She is conflicted that he came to her aid despite all the bad things she has done to him. It seems she has low self-confidence over her true loli form. She thinks nobody listens to her in this form and Shido the same because he called her pretty in that busty mode. Had she appeared before him in this loli form first, she believes he would have ignored her too. She thinks he is lying when he says even her loli form has some charming points. She won’t be fooled by this. But soon, Shido and his harem give Natsumi a special makeover. They will transform her the best they can. If they succeed, they win. Natsumi becomes the cutest loli under their care. However she is now very conflicted because it is her loss if she is cute! Too much to handle for today. Meanwhile Ellen contacts Origami and wants her to work for her under DEM Industries. She refuses, citing she will not join any organization that harms Shido. But when she offers info that would allow her to avenge her parents’ death, she has no choice but to accept.

Episode 5
Natsumi has stabilized but still thinks everybody is lying. Kotori talks to the girls and tries to get them to think the same like her. That is, badmouthing Natsumi as an ugly brat. However none of them think so and believe it is Kotori who is something wrong. Even Shido is thinking they shouldn’t confine Natsumi and should let her eat with them. This makes Kotori mad and runs away. Of course that was Natsumi in disguise as the real Kotori calls since well, Natsumi has somehow escaped her room. Shido looks around and returns home only to see Ellen waiting. She wants him to hand over Natsumi or else he will ruin his home and family. Nice timing for a call to evacuate. It seems those vengeful board is trying to drop a satellite on this town to get their revenge on Westcott. Everyone is evacuated but Shido continues to look for Natsumi. Fraxinus tries to blow it out of the sky but there is some barrier. Hence, Kotori transforms into Efreet to blast it out of the sky. It works. Oh, there is a second satellite dropping! She is out of power and wants Shido to evacuate but you know, stubborn guy is willing to put his life at risk just for a witch girl. He even uses Sandalphon but no effect and he too is out of strength. Kotori has to beg the other Spirit girls to save her brother. Meanwhile Ellen returns to Westcott and is stumped he still hasn’t evacuated. He is confident the plan will fail. But just in case, he wants to use and put her to the test. The Spirits combine their powers to push the satellite away since exploding it too close to town will be dangerous. However, bogeys are here to stall the Spirits. With their hands tight, who else is going to save them? Natsumi! She easily turns the satellite into some harmless cartoon. Natsumi tries to act tough but Shido is only glad that she is unhurt. I guess this is it for Natsumi. She admits all her wrongdoings and starts crying. Shido hopes she could be his friend and she cries harder! WTF?! The Spirits too can’t leave Natsumi alone and want to be Shido’s friend. Why the heck did they ‘downgrade’ themselves? Do they want to be his lover? Natsumi learns the sealing process. Though embarrassed, she gets it over quickly by kissing him. Can’t rest yet as a bomb is now literally being dropped! Who saves them this time? Origami!

Episode 6
Perhaps Shido should have seen this coming. Sexy Natsumi trying to seduce him in bed. Foreplay folly only stopped thanks to Kotori. Then it descends into some petty argument of sexiness and boobs. On to a serious note, Shido is in shock when he hears Tamae announcing that Origami has suddenly transferred out to a school in England. Shido then connects the dots that she might have joined DEM Industries since she was wearing their power suit. So desperate that during lunch he goes to her place. Empty. Despair? Like as though it was a trap for him as he gets kidnapped. Kotori receives word of Shido’s sudden disappearance and wants him found before the end of the school day. Shido finds himself tied in a room. The perpetrator no other than Origami. Although she admits she joined DEM Industries, these actions are of her own and not Westcott’s orders. She has finally found the resolve to kill the Spirits. Not just the Spirits that killed her parents, but all of them. Hence, she abducted him to keep him out. To her, all Spirits are the same and to prevent future tragedies like her, all Spirits will die. Shido argues that Touka and co have changed and all they want is to lead normal lives. That is the reason Origami couldn’t accept. To accept living together with the likes of Touka. Origami begins her plan by sounding a fake spacequake alert to evacuate the people. Now she can kill the Spirits with no interference. Touka and co are shocked at Origami’s resolve. They don’t want to fight her but are forced to since they can see she is dead serious in killing them. Meanwhile Ratatoskr is about to head and retrieve the Spirits but is intercepted by Goetia, DEM Industries’ ship. Ellen contacts them and gives them a chance to run. She also relays a message for Woodman. They call him a traitor and will make him pay. With nobody on Fraxinus turning away, they prepare to fight back but Goetia easily blasts them. Meanwhile Touka is down for the count.

Episode 7
Did Origami return just to laugh at Shido? Actually it’s Natsumi. Yoshino and Natsumi were wandering around town and spotted Shido and Origami, hence the tailing game. We see Origami owning the Spirits. With Touka hell bent on protecting those important to her, her Spirit power returns and is able to defeat Origami. Origami laments all that she has thrown away have been wasted when a voice asks her if she wants power. Of course. With that, Origami is now a Spirit. Stronger than before, she renews her vow to kill all Spirits before killing herself. Touka can’t fight and protect at the same time so she has the rest get away. The power Spirit fight gets on the way but further damage is prevented when Shido calls out to them. I guess Origami isn’t in the mood anymore and flies away. Shido learns what happened from Touka as they all recuperate in the infirmary. Shido has to seal Touka’s power and you know that means kissing. I guess it is better here in this room than out in the public. If only the other damn Spirits weren’t so eager in being peeping toms. Meanwhile our favourite Spirit, Kurumi is seen frolicking around town. Origami then approaches her.

Episode 8
It seems she wants Kurumi to use one of her powers, Yod Beth to send her back 5 years in time to stop the death of her parents. What is she going to do if Kurumi refuses? Bug her until she agrees! I guess Kurumi is smart enough not to deal with that crap and decides to agree to it. After all, she needs somebody as a guinea pig for her Yod Beth. Origami returns in time just before the spacequake. She confronts the supposed Phantom although we cannot see or hear her properly thanks to ‘interference’. Origami is so hell bent in destroying her without reason to reason, that she realizes too late that she was the one who killed her parents! Well, now that comes full circle. ‘Funny’ to know that Origami hating and vowing to kill the Spirit was actually her future self. Phantom flees after satisfied that she has achieved her goal. Back in current time, the moon goes black and suddenly Origami starts raining down attacks randomly. So she’s no longer a Spirit but an Inverse? Oh sh*t! It took down Fraxinus (for the second time) but this time did it kill Kotori on board?! It’s Shido cue to go save Origami and end this madness and you know it’s his job since the other Spirits fend off the other attacks to make a path to her. They also have to deal with Ellen who wants to harvest her. But Shido loses his chance to kiss and seal her because Origami’s face up close looks like a hagged old woman! Yikes! I can see why any guy would freak out and fall right down to hell!!! Because of that, Kurumi traps him as now it is the right time to set forth her goal. No amount of begging is going to make her let you go, Shido. She fires Yod Beth into him. Shido finds himself back 5 years in time. Sorry Tamae, this boy whom you don’t know is not trying to hit on you. Since Shido is clueless, Kurumi lets him in on what’s happening. The only way to reverse the disaster unfolding in the present is to deal with Origami’s past. He must reverse it. So why is she doing this? Looks like the future is destroyed and Kurumi is holding on to that hope that history can be changed. Wait. This is Kurumi? Our Kurumi?!

Episode 9
Shido almost blunders when he tries to take a shortcut and a neighbour thinks he is a suspicious person. Somehow he manages to use Natsumi’s power to transform himself into a kid to allay the suspicions. With Origami’s battle with Phantom now at hand, Shido is too late as he witnesses and now understands why Origami turned out so. So he hugs loli Origami and tries to convince her that he will shoulder all her burdens. Although she accepts, however this anger is only hers to carry. He will have fun and be sad on her behalf until she kills that Spirit. Oddly, Kurumi feels regret that had she not used Yod Beth in the first place, this wouldn’t have happened. So she didn’t see this coming? However Kurumi believes there is still a way to correct this. Because her old self was nearby the incident, Shido goes to see that Kurumi. She is of course on her guard at this stranger. Shido convinces her to touch him so as to contact Kurumi of the present. She is to fire Yod Beth into Shido to send him back again in time. Just right before that incident again. Shido thinks of a plan. They cannot prevent Origami from seeing her parents’ death because that would be just shifting her grudge to someone else. Hence Shido goes to ‘stalk’ Kotori. As much as he wants to stop her from contacting Phantom, he can’t. So after Phantom turned her into a Spirit and causing the adjacent place to burn, Shido’s plan is to talk to Phantom. However it seems she recognizes him and runs away. But soon she decides to confront him. Even though this is not her true form but it’s better than talking to censors. Who this girl? But Phantom claims she knows him and cannot obey his wishes. She hopes to meet again when the time is right. Phantom goes off to fight with Origami and with history at risk of repeating itself, Shido this time pushes Origami’s parents away and gets vaporized on their behalf. But the next thing he knows, he wakes up in bed in his house. Looks peaceful. But he can’t contact Kurumi anymore. Did he save the day?

Episode 10
Everyone is normal. Kotori tells him today’s date and it is the day after Origami went Inverse. But in school, it seems nobody knows about Origami. This has Shido to believe Origami of this world doesn’t hold a grudge against Spirits and is living happily with her parents. But why he looking so sad? Because of that, some of his Spirit harem thinks he has girlfriend issues. WTF Natsumi’s idea to dress up in a naked apron to cheer him up? Shido then learns of a terrifying Spirit known as Devil. Rather, she is an Inverse. Not surprisingly, she looks like Origami. Back to depression again. But next day, shocking news for him as Origami is a new transfer student in his class! She is shocked to see him. Shido finds out more that Origami did join AST but retired a while ago. So if her parents were saved, why did she join AST? Hence he talks to her directly. Her initial shock was because he looked like the person who saved her 5 years ago. Remember, Shido got vaporized. Shido lies that person is his older brother. It makes her sad but also grateful because her family got to live together. Although unfortunately her parents died in an accident 4 years ago. She joined AST so as not to have more tragic cases like his ‘brother’. However she doesn’t understand when he asks her becoming a Spirit. Later after Shido wakes up from resting, surprise to see Kurumi here? She plans to shoot Yod Beth at Origami to see what happened. Why now? Because she couldn’t get close to the original. When Origami stumbles into Kurumi, she transforms into Devil and attacks. Kurumi lost?! Origami reverts to her normal state and has no recollection of what just happened.

Episode 11
With Origami not sure why she spaces out from time to time, Kurumi admits at this rate it is hard to discover why Origami turned Inverse. Shido tells Kotori and Reine what happened. Reine theorizes her memories split into 2. As soon as she senses a Spirit, she awakens as an Inverse type. The plan is to seal her as a Spirit but looks like Shido already agreed to go on a date with her. With Fraxinus doing that date sim option thingy, Shido wants to try a different route. Like taking her to a love hotel?! Just joking. But it spiked her happiness level. He then takes her to a shop selling weird things and unknowingly she buys those products. Even when shopping for clothes, she unknowingly wears a doggy ears swimsuit? During lunch, she tries to lick his spoon and when accidentally spilling water over his shirt, the moment he shows his abs she starts snapping away! She claims her body is moving on its own? At the end of the day, Origami feels confused. She is still sad about Shido’s ‘brother’ but he claims he would have done the same thing. With Origami’s happiness level at max, time to seal the deal but WTF the wooden barrier breaks and she falls off. Shido saves her but got his hands scratched and bleeding. Because of that she becomes a Spirit? Locking herself inside an armour cocoon, Shido tries to break through but it’s too tough. Yeah, Fraxinus is shot down again. Shido can’t run away and let the town be destroyed so he is going to keep trying even if it seems futile. Not if his other Spirit harem can help path a way to reach her. Meanwhile Origami is inside her consciousness and sees her other Devil self. When she touches her, they receive memories from both their worlds. Devil relates the truth that she can never take back the sin of killing her parents. Before Origami falls into despair, Shido’s voice can be heard. Must have said all the right words. You’re not alone. Always here for you. I’ll always save you no matter how much she is in despair. No matter how many times he has to rewrite history. Works like a charm. Origami reaches out to him. She accepts the fact the sin of killing her parents will never go away and Shido agrees that is her burden to bear. She admits she doesn’t love him but only relied on him. Honoured, it is exactly why he was able to save her. Finally he seals her with a kiss. With Origami back in class, you know it’s the Origami we know because she tries to wipe Shido’s tears with her crotch! Yeah, she claims the swimsuit retains moisture better. Though she did claim she never loved him, that is why she can begin her true love for him now. Oh boy. Let the harem fight begin too.

Episode 12
Woah. Shido suddenly super strong and fast? And then he collapses. The source is because his Spirit harem is hanging around him, their Spirit power is causing his body to overheat. A simple kiss is enough to seal it. No time to be shy because Shido just escaped. Worse, he is now a lady killer flirting with any women he sees! WTF is this short cheesy musical segment?! I guess Ellen got the rudest shock with Shido being such a cool cat, it reduces Ellen to some embarrassed b*tch. Get him back next time, huh? When the other girls come and want to seal his power, he throws them a condition. They must make him fall for them and a reason enough to kiss them. Roles reversed now. So we have the Spirit harem taking turns to swoon him. The twins go first. Eating an ice cream yuri style helps with the cream dropping all over their body. Score! Natsumi tries to seduce him in her busty body but she ran out of power and now the swimsuit is hanging loose over her loli body. Score! Yoshino massages him and shows him her swimsuit underneath? That is also score?! It’s classy and elegant time and with Kotori being such a lady, that is enough to score. Even Miku just saying a few words is enough to score. And she didn’t even do anything. Origami tries to spike his drink but the bartender mixes it up. Damn. Now she’s drunk, she’s so cute falling all over him. Score! Save the best for last because now it’s Touka. She feels uneasy about this but before she could do her usual stuff (eating of course) with him, looks like Shido has prematurely overheated. WTF did he just do a Kamehameha and turn Super Saiyan???!!! The girls chase this raging beast. Kotori is inclined to use some weapon to shoot him down but Origami and Touka stop her. There are better ways to solve this. Yeah, let’s not resort to violence, shall we? With the help of Kurumi restraining him, eventually the girls manage to land some cheap kiss on him (WTF?!) and the last ‘boss’ is Touka. Braving his attacks, she realizes this feeling called love inside her for him and that Shido has been suffering like this to reach out to them. Finally, a decent kiss. Touka won the lottery because she gets to be with Shido recuperating in hospital. She is the only one who didn’t manage to make him swoon in the contest so I guess this is fair. It must be her lucky day because a second great kiss is coming! It’s safe to say Touka won, no?

The Spirit Is Willing But The Boy/Trash Is Weak
Oh dear. The final episode was the lamest, the cheesiest, the most WTF and the worst ever. But it is also the most fun! Because, who really gives a damn at this point? Imagine, this is what this series would have been had it actually followed this route of the most cliché harem trope with Shido being turned into a typical main character harem douchebag. I don’t think it will get past the first season if it ruined the series went along with that kind cheesiness. Even though it somewhat reminds us that it should be Shido x Touka but the ending felt somewhat completed. Uh huh. The sudden abrupt ending with them kissing felt like there was something missing. Why the heck did Kurumi not kiss Shido???!!! Our favourite Spirit and she is the only one left out of the kissing spree?! I suppose she will always remain the rebel until the end.

I read that many hated and criticized this season because of how they trashed and butchered the final arc of this season. If you find that there are things that you don’t really understand (like yours truly), perhaps you can blame this. After all, if you want to watch the third season, it is best you have watched the previous seasons because knowledge of what has happened so far and the settings of this world is very important if you want to enjoy understand this season. To be fair, the series want to advance its plot and can’t be spending an extra episode to refresh our memories or introduce newbies to the series. Yeah, best you go back and watch everything again. Ain’t nobody got time for that! But sad to say, the third season doesn’t fair as well as the disappointing second season and could be the death knell of this series for good.

This season is split into 2 arcs. The first arc being the typical add-another-Spirit-into-Shido’s harem and the second bringing one of the main characters officially into Shido’s harem. Yeah. That’s how I see it. Lucky bastard. Initially I thought the Natsumi arc was going to be the arc that would set the rest of the season. I don’t know how I started coming up with the theory of one episode for Shido to date the possible candidate. Hence an elimination of a character/candidate per episode. I thought this was going to be super boring if they are going to follow through this formula. It isn’t impossible because, what is the name of this series again? Thankfully Natsumi’s cheeky guessing game was cut short and I suppose I also got a bit disappointed because it didn’t really amount to anything much. I thought it would drag on a few more episodes since Yuzuru got the bulk of that focus so I thought some of the other characters might have their chance too. None. Yeah, they literally speed run through this game. It certainly would have been interesting to see Shido on a date with Tamae?

Hence Natsumi becomes a mere side supporting character once she officially becomes part of Shido’s Spirit harem. What is better than having a loli? Why, having 2 lolis! Because Yoshino is the meek kind, we need to have the kind that is bratty. I see no other Spirit having this character so okay, let’s make bratty Natsumi part of the gang. The other Spirits also suffer thanks to Origami’s arc taking the entire second half. Touka, Yoshino, Yuzuru, Kaguya and Miku fall way off into the side-lines as the only non-Spirit girl deals with her issues and becomes a Spirit. I guess it is such a waste for these Spirit characters and they are just around for some comical issues and to remind us that Shido has a harem. Sometimes to ex machina certain situations because Shido as a normal high school kid can’t do everything himself. The last episode didn’t do any justice as it was just rushed. Trying to give his ballooning Spirit harem some flirting time with Shido but it comes off as a big fail and waste of time. So miniscule and ridiculous their screen time, might as well not have this crap in the first place. Oh well, having some sort of crap is better than having no crap at all!

Despite Kurumi only making limited appearances, I suppose she is the reason why we find this series a little bit tolerable. Okay, maybe not for all of us. But yeah, the enigmatic Kurumi is perhaps why many keep having hope for this series and that she should just own every other Spirit and become Shido’s only one. Oh well. Not in this world and timeline. Maybe in some other’s if history and the world was rewrote in another way under different circumstances. Could be possible considering Kurumi’s Spirit powers that there might be a world where she gets Shido all by herself and none of those lame Spirit b*tches in the way.

Remember Mana? No. Not to worry. I don’t even remember her until I was going through my previous blog! Oh dear. Who the f*ck is she?! She is supposed to be Origami’s AST comrade and I don’t see her appearing anywhere in this season. I don’t remember what happened to her the last time but I guess she was so insignificant with no role to play, they might have completely cut her out from this season. Other characters like Westcott and Woodman feel like red herring. It’s like they’ve got a plan for something but so far, nothing to show for. At least nothing important or significant that I can see. Last and not least, got to say that girl who is part of the 3 stooges who only says one single line is still f*cking amusing. Majihiku wa!

Origami’s arc is timely and a focus on her character is much needed. However it doesn’t feel as interesting. Because I predicted and saw it from 100 miles away that she was the Spirit that killed her parents. Cue to drag out the drama after she falls into despair from some emotional brownie points. Who knows, she could actually be Phantom herself from another timeline or future. Might not be confident with this conspiracy theory but it is still a possibility. Though, not a very high one. With Shido rewriting history, we get to see a very different side of Origami. She wasn’t the weird pervert that we always know but a meek and very shy girl. She is so different that she might as well be a very different character. Either way, even if the mind forgets, the body doesn’t. Hence it could be the only explanation why that meek Origami’s body started doing weird perverted things on its own. It’s like between the devil and the deep blue sea. Would we rather have this nice girl Origami or the bold weirdo Origami? Well… I’d rather have Kurumi!!! Damn you people, give us another Kurumi OVA, will ‘ya?!

Art and animation I believe remains constant with its previous seasons but is it me or do I feel that there is a drop in quality? For one, I thought that all the characters look a bit younger than they are. For example like Shido, at certain angles he looks a bit like a kid and at other times just a bit weird. Even some of the scenes showing the Spirits, it’s like they lack details and I thought they just gave up and hope we didn’t notice. Well, I did. Perhaps the different production studios for different seasons were the reason? AIC Plus+ did the first season followed by Production IMS in the second. This time it is animated by J.C. Staff. Seriously, do they not have any animes to animate? Sure, they have their hands full with the To Aru series, then they had High Score Girl and Hangyakusei Million Arthur, One Punch Man S2 and the upcoming DanMachi S2 to deal with. Oh yeah. Big company, many stuffs, more projects, more money. Makes sense.

Sweet Arms have been singing this series’ opener for the last 2 seasons. They’re back again for the third. I Swear isn’t a cover of All-4-One’s 1994 hit single. But I rather hear All-4-One’s piece than this bland generic anime pop. The same can be said for the ending theme, Last Promise by Erii Yamazaki. Sounds pretty generic and nothing special. This season’s seiyuu joining the line-up are Ayumi Mano as Natsumi (Esaka in Ore Ga Suki Nano Wa Imouto Dakedo Imouto Ja Nai) and the recognizable Kana Hanazawa as Phantom. Speaking of which, it is odd and further fuels my suspicions that this Phantom character is not the real Phantom because in the ending credits, Phantom’s seiyuu is marked as “???” whereas Kana Hanazawa’s character is also marked as “???”. Something looks shady here…

Overall, the third season didn’t really do any justice to make amends of the poor showing of the second season and further drove a nail into its coffin. It’s like they want to bury this series for good. Not even Kurumi’s Yod Beth for a different world to rewrite this crap can save this season. Because ultimately even if another parallel world that this third season was good exists, it still doesn’t hide the fact that some bad sh*t has happened and we have to shoulder the burden and accept that the third season was awful. Yeah. Thanks Origami. We learnt something from your past. Accept and move on. Sometimes it feels like Shido is the Date A Live series and Origami coming up with those damn weird pranks represents the production team trying to screw him up. Or Shido being a douchebag and trying to screw with the ladies. Not impressed. Screwed us up alright. Many say that you’d be better off reading the light novels but considering myself who doesn’t like to read, looks like it is dead end for me. Ironically, the most relevant line to sum up this season and our sentiments come from a certain irrelevant minor character. Yup. Majihiku wa.

Because Kurumi who was one of the best Spirits around didn’t get lots of screen time in the second season, I guess they try to justify it by making Date A Live II: Encore OVA. This OVA has Kurumi in the spotlight and goes back to the time when Shido dated her during the Tanabata festival. Shido and Kurumi dating? What more, a wedding hall? Is that possible? Is something sinister behind this date? Well if you know Kurumi, you would feel there is something suspicious behind her actions. Or maybe this is her sincere feelings and she just really want to date him. Maybe. Or not.

Date A Kurumi
Shido bumps into Kurumi in the streets and she begs to him that she wants to go on a date with him. She even promises that she is not here to hurt him whatsoever. Of course after the last event (back in season 1), he is still suspicious. However seeing her cry (crocodile tears not?) and there is a different air around her, he agrees. She is so happy that for this moment he belongs to her and nobody else. As they walk around, he heard her saying how delicious he is. Turns out she was referring to some stall selling castella snacks. Kurumi is having lots of fun being with him. She brings him to the planetarium as he continues to remain suspicious of her although everything about her today feels like a normal girl. The planetarium hall features the Orihime and Hikoboshi stars so Kurumi talks about the once a year meeting the lovers have. She feels that due to the infrequency, their love vow will soon fade. However Shido believes they aren’t forgetting each other and believe are still meeting each other behind the backs of everyone. This causes Kurumi to laugh so hard that he had to take her out of the hall to calm down. Then there is this wedding exhibition in which she wants to dress up in and take pictures for memories.

Meanwhile Kotori, Touka and Yoshino are at the festival too looking for Shido. They stop by to write their wishes on the tanzaku. Kotori wrote she wanted to marry Shido but quickly erased and changed it to something else when Touka spots it. Then they split up to look for Shido. Yoshino sees Shido and Kurumi entering the wedding hall together. As she spies outside, Kurumi notices her and goes to talk to her. Kurumi thinks she has seen her before. When Yoshino asks about their relationship, Kurumi might have exaggerated with lots of ambiguity that she knows every inch of Shido’s body and something from him infiltrated her body and now he is taking responsibility. This is too hot for Yoshino to handle as she runs away. Shido returns saying that the clerk won’t allow them to dress up but Kurumi went to whisper to her and in an instant the clerk gives them the best service. The duo are fabulous in their white wedding outfits as Shido learns Kurumi told the clerk that she has a terminal illness and has not much longer to live. Total lies but it worked. The clerk snaps a picture of them.

Yoshino reports back to the rest and from the way she explains it, Kotori is freaking pissed that some hot girl seduced her brother (skirt flipping and hot passionate one night stand included) and is making him take responsibility by marrying her. Look at how her face is contorting. Scary. Shido and Kurumi are now writing their wish. He spots the tanzaku of the other girls. His wish is for spacequakes to disappear. Kurumi won’t let him see hers and she learns the belief that the higher you place your tanzaku, the higher chance your wish comes true. However she knows time is up. She hopes he will not forget her. That is when the real Kurumi appears. She is not pleased that her clone disobeyed her orders, what more fell in love with him. Kurumi explains her clones are made out of her past sentiments and experiences so this one might be from the one during that face off at the rooftop back in season one. Kurumi kills her clone by making her fall into a portal. The clone’s last words is that she had fun. The other girls show up to protect Shido who is reeling from the shock. But Kurumi isn’t here to fight them and has done what she has come to do. Shido is frustrated that Kurumi came to see him knowing the real one will come kill her. She chose to defy her absolute will for a few hours of memories. When he sees her tanzaku, he quickly runs to the highest spot to tie it. This dangerous act has him fall off although Touka catches him. Kurumi’s wish is to see him once more. With that, Shido will never forget her.

Date For The Moment
Feels like an OVA for the first season, don’t you think? No twins and no Miku. Even worse, no Origami. But that is because she had her own spotlight for the first season’s OVA. Nevertheless as far as this OVA is concerned, I guess it feels okay although that ending feels a little tragic. Most of us would be thinking if there is some sort of trickery to this date and how Shido is going to get screwed up in this trap. And what do you know? It wasn’t the real Kurumi but a part of her. Therefore it feels a little sad that this nice Kurumi had to die in the end but it somehow gives an idea of Kurumi’s character over time. It goes to show that even deep down inside the heart of the worst Spirit, there is still hope. There is still a part of her that loves Shido and can be saved no matter how small that part is. So maybe that wish she made will come true one day? We hope. We prefer this Kurumi to the dangerous one, no? Or is the dangerous one more exciting because of her bold flirtatious seduction? Well Shido, maybe you can find some backdoor and meet her again behind the scenes and everyone’s back. Just don’t let the real Kurumi find out.

Date A Live II

December 13, 2014

Remember when terrible beings that have the potential to destroy the entire Earth, there are only 2 ways to go about it. Either you take the offensive by eliminating them or you take the soft approach by dating them and make them feel happy. Yeah. Thank goodness they are cute pretty girls. And so with the continuation of the sequel, Date A Live II, our main protagonist whose life isn’t anywhere near being an ordinary high school student anymore, continues with this mission to save the world via pacifist route, dating hostile beings known as Spirits. Thus in a way amassing a harem of Spirits that will eventually lead down the road of catfights. More Spirits. More girls into the harem. More conflicting feelings, blah, blah, blah. Can’t get enough of those, can’t we?

Episode 1
We are reminded about the devastated spacequake that killed millions 30 years ago. And now, Shido is about to have his own ‘quake’ because Touka’s mood levels are decreasing as she accidentally spilled water on Shido’s book and fears he might hate her. And there is Yoshino accidentally freezing the bathtub and Yoshinon is stuck inside. Ah, Shido. He’s such a busy guy… Meanwhile Origami is facing sanctions in her military court. However she is lucky to get 2 months suspension. She then texts Shido to meet. That guy goes out to see her on pretence he is going to the supermarket (otherwise, you know who will become freaking upset). Because Origami looks like a stalker, she brings him to another private place to talk. The girl’s toilet. WTF. After explaining her judgment, she mentions she is still not convinced that Kotori who is also Efreet is not the one who killed her parents as claimed by Shido. There is no proof. However she would want to avoid killing his sister too. She also mentions she was sure she killed him back then. So she asks is he human. He believes he is. Because if he is a Spirit, there may be orders that she will have to eliminate him. Then she reminds him about the school trip. Touka finds a packed suitcase in Shido’s room. She thinks he is running away. Because that drama serial about a guy leaving her lover is playing right now. With her mood levels dropping, she rushes out to find him while Kotori and her Ratatoskr crew can’t seem to connect to Shido. When Touka finds him, she sees him coming out of the toilet with Origami. Naive emo girl believes all the ambiguous words the scheming emotionless b*tch says. Touka is so sad thinking Shido is bored living with her that she runs away. When Kotori finally manages to contact him, the obvious way to calm Touka down is to date her. That is what their organization is for. This is what he is supposed to do. This is what this anime is about. At first she tries to sulk but we know she is itching to go on a date. However the soy sauce bread she wanted is sold out. Everywhere they go, none are left! Sulking level… It turns out the dumb Kannadzuki bought it all and is thus ordered to bring them to Shido.

Once everything returns to normal, back home Shido notices his suitcase broken and decides to go fix it. Touka’s suspicion level is on the rise again. Uh huh. The TV drama is now playing the guy is cheating his wife with a hot babe. Oh God. Here we go again. She rushes out only to find Shido meeting Origami at the station. Yeah. She even has such a vivid imagination and put words in his mouth that he is leaving her. She steals his suitcase and runs away. Her level is so bad that the alert to take shelter is sounded. Shido catches up to her and had to assure her, cross his heart he isn’t going anywhere. The suitcase is for their school trip next week. And no, he is not tired of living with her, dummy. Touka might have calmed down but since her energy has reached critical level, it is going out of control. It seems all humanity’s hope rests on him. Otherwise Touka will be powerful enough to annihilate herself and the city. Shido pushes himself towards Touka despite a strong barrier pushing him away. Coupled with assuring words that he will always accept her and believe in him, they finally come together and everything stabilizes with a kiss. Meanwhile Isaac Westcott gets a report on Touka’s whereabouts. They were tracking her 3 months ago when she disappeared and now she is a high school student. He has Ellen Mira Mathers to do the job as he views her the best Wizard in history. Also, Kurumi is back. She still isn’t giving up on that guy as she needs him to use Yod Beth, Zafkiel’s final bullet. She will find the first Spirit who appeared on Earth 30 years ago who brought every other Spirit and kill him. She shoots herself to clone herself.

Episode 2
Even before the school trip begins, Touka and Origami are arguing. What else? Shido. Touka is dressed as a boy in hopes of being able to share the same room with Shido. But Origami is ‘smarter’. She’ll have Shido turn into a girl instead! Oh God… Will they ever stop bickering? Till Tamae tells them they can sit next to him in the airplane. Well, it’s definitely not good for him. Caught between the bickering girls. Again. Ellen is also onboard the plane disguised as a journalist so any pictures she snaps of Shido and the girls can be passed off as nothing suspicious. She also reports back to some general in an airship. Too bad she always gets hounded by the 3 stooges. A storm suddenly kicks up on the island. Touka bears the brunt of getting hit by heavy metal appliances. Ouch. As Shido tries to bring her away, he sees a couple of Spirits fighting in the storm. Twins, Kaguya and Yuzuru are fighting each other trying (including silly verbal accusations) to be the better Yamai. Shido is so annoyed by it that he yells for them to stop. Bad idea? Now that they have got their attention on him, Kaguya hits upon a brilliant idea. As the many battles they fought, they have equal number of wins and losses and almost as much draws, they are running out of ways to fight. Meaning? Imagine the surprise of everyone when they see this pair of twins trying to seduce Shido!!! He will be the judge who decides the winner! WTF?! Reine informs the twins are new transfer students. Tamae certainly didn’t here of this. And in this match of seduction, they continue to argue who is cuter and put down the other. Oh Shido, you must be the most annoyed because he is in the centre of it all. Is there a mute button somewhere?

They explain to him the reason for their fighting. They were once a single Spirit called Yamai but for some reason they split. Once they will become one again and the winner’s will have her mind remain. The loser’s mind disappears. Hah. The responsibility in choosing one of them is getting heavier, no? Shido thought he could relax by himself early in the hotspring but here are the twins again! Arguing! Cut this guy some slack! What the heck are they doing in the men’s section?! They don’t care. Because the argument and trading of insults continue for a good 4 minutes!!! OMFG! You think Shido is safe when somebody is coming in? That somebody is Touka! Could she have messed up the gender section? Actually the twins switched the signs before Shido came in and then switch back after. So technically the twins didn’t enter the wrong bath. Surprisingly Touka isn’t mad with his flirting. But more girls are coming! I don’t know how Touka is going to hide him behind her back because it isn’t going to work as the other girls approach her. She distracts them temporarily for Shido to run but he runs to the cliff. Accidentally Touka bumps him over. Long way down… So he returns to Reine, half naked and cold… Not a prank… Ellen reports to her higher ups about some unforeseen circumstances but the plan tonight shall proceed. The Bandersnatches will be on standby.

Episode 3
The seduction continues! Oh yeah! The twins are getting physical with him in his bed!!! I’m going to love this!!! Origami and Touka are also arguing over Shido but they’re doing it elsewhere and not near him. That’s why the twins are the best, huh? By the time Shido can’t take anymore ‘abuse’, he runs out and bumps into Tamae. In his birthday suit. Things are just going downhill… As part of Reine’s plan, Shido is to date them both so that he will be able to control them to a certain degree. Reine has also given communicators to the twins in pretence of helping them. So here is his first battle: Putting lotion on their back. As usual, they toss and turn and have their fair share of having Shido putting it on. Thank goodness he has 2 hands. I don’t know. Is putting lotion very climaxing? Now that is what you call Hand of God. Ellen once again follows Origami and Touka but yet again is foiled by the unwitting 3 stooges. Touka and Origami join Shido and the twins and it seems the twins know the girls because of last night’s ‘master-servant’ bonding whatever. With Reine, they split into teams to play beach volleyball. The twins seem like they do not have full cooperation but after being mocked, they power up (at the expense of poor Shido getting slam with the ball in his face) to counter attack. They’re so happy and dancing together before they realize they’re getting too friendly with each other and back off.

Shido gets a surprise. On separate occasions, the twins personally come to talk to him and want him to choose the other! They are saying good things about the other and really want the other to live. They started fighting because they thought the other was superior. So he better choose the other or they’ll wipe out this island with his friends. What a fine mess. Either way he can’t really choose now, right? Before we forget that this show also has Touka in the running, we see her and Shido having a little quality time talking together at the beach that night. She could tell he is troubled so he reveals the problem about the twins. Touka could understand their actions because she would have done the same. But bad news. The twins heard it and are not pleased. They’re really pissed. I guess having a third party judging them wasn’t a good idea. Back to square one. Transforming into their S&M outfit with equally badass weapons, they take it to the skies and continue their battle. Well, it’s kicking up a storm. Origami spots a Bandersnatch before her as it attacks. Because Kotori isn’t around, Kannadzuki assumes control and has his team to deploy Yggdra Folium. This causes Fraxinus to become visible for a while. The enemy ship spots them and the general orders to take it down.

Episode 4
Kannadzuki orders his team to concentrate the energy to some spot to increase defence in that area despite leaving other areas unprotected. He revels each time Fraxinus gets hit. He’s a masochist, remember? The crew calls Kotori for help but she says no worries. Believe in Kannadzuki. Oddly too, the enemy fires exactly at all the coordinates he predicted. Now it’s their turn to attack back. Although they miss, the enemy general is frustrated and orders to charge into their area. If the twins are already a handful, Shido and Touka have to deal with Ellen and her Bandersnatches. She wants to see how strong Touka is and transforms into her AST uniform to fight her. Touka lost and is to be apprehended. Shido felt hopeless just like the last time but in his desperate attempt to save her, suddenly Sandalphon materializes in his hand as he cuts down the Bandersnatches. The enemy ship gets hit by some cannon. From what I understand, because they cross some line, Yggdra Folium which was kept hidden activated and fired. Their control centre takes a hit and because of that, the Bandersnatches that Ellen orders to take in both Touka and Shido malfunctions. This allows the duo to escape. Unfortunately for Ellen, she falls prey to another hole dug by the 3 stooges earlier on. That’s the end for her today. How anti-climax…

Now Shido and Touka can deal with the twins who are still fighting. They’re still not listening. Shido can’t seem to get Sandalphon to work so Touka teaches him how to embrace the sword with his wish for the angel to answer him. The swing breaks up the twins and gets their attention. Now screaming to them to stop, although the twins don’t consider him involved anymore, he never said he quit being their judge. He has decided who will be the true Yamai. Both! They’re not impressed so Shido gives them 3 choices. The first 2 is to let the other absorb into the other while the third one is they lose their Spirit powers and become human. Please give him a chance to save them both. After all that screaming and pleading, it would be in bad taste to ignore what he said. So the twins reconcile, make up, talk nicely like how sisters should, apologize that they lied about wanting to die because they want to live too, etc. Then they had to be interrupted by the enemy who is going to take them all in and sends out all the Bandersnatches they have. Bad move. Because this scene is to show us how the twins can combine their weapon into one badass weapon that kickass. It blasts right through the enemy ship. Flawless victory! Origami wakes up with Reine by her side. She is safe but laments she was not strong enough to protect Shido and wants to become stronger. In the aftermath, the twins thank Shido. With a double kiss! Little do they know this is his way of sealing their power and you know what that means. They’re buck naked. It gets worse when Touka comes in and the twins make it as though he assaulted them. Well Shido, this is the path you chose, right? Ellen reports back to Westcott as she confirms about Touka. He is happy with her work and orders her return. Meanwhile Kotori sees Elliot Baldwin Woodman, the founder of Ratatoskr and Kotori’s benefactor. He heard Shido has summoned and angel. Action must be taken soon otherwise all the Spirits they sealed will once again face disaster. If it comes down to it, Kotori will kill Shido herself.

Episode 5
Just when Origami’s commander lifts her suspension, here comes in another colleague not happy with some arrangement that some members of DEM Industries will be transferring into AST as an independent unit. Well, AST has failed to capture a single Spirit, right? Folks, meet Jessica Bailey, the leader of this independent unit. While Shido is running an errand for some upcoming grand festival, the spacequake alert sounds. They track it down to a stage and see the Spirit called Diva otherwise known as Miku Izayoi the idol. When Shido approaches her, she becomes very upset. Her moods start decreasing as she throws verbal abuses at him. He could have died when she throws him off the stage but the AST is here to take her on. She fights them before fleeing. Back at Fraxinus, we learn that Miku despite being an idol making a huge wave 6 months ago with all her songs becoming hits, it is strange she has yet to make a single public appearance and her simple data like birthday and hometown remain unknown. As for Miku’s harsh treatment on Shido, it’s because she is a lesbian who loves girls. So what now? Kotori gives the approval for Shido to cross-dress! Folks, meet Shiori! Oh yeah. Origami must have something awakened in her since she is snapping photos on Shiori like mad. Not to mention under the skirt! So Shiori goes to see Miku and thankfully she doesn’t have aversion to tomboys since it is Hard for a Shido to act like a girl. The strike up a conversation and in no time they become friends. Shiori even gets the privilege to attend her private afternoon tea that she has once a week with her favourite girls. I guess Shido has to go, huh?

Things are looking good during the tea when Miku wants Shiori to transfer to her school. Don’t worry about money or grades. She can arrange them. Miku tries to use her voice to mind control Shiori but it doesn’t work. She senses something amiss and deduces Shiori must be a Spirit or Wizard trying to kill her because no human can disobey her. Since lying will make things worse, Shiori tells the truth that ‘she’ is neither but a human who can seal Spirits. Mentioning ‘her’ past records of already sealing 5 Spirits, if Miku allows Shiori to seal and save her, she can continue to live this life without having AST pursuing her. But Miku doesn’t think it is necessary as she likes it this way. The spacequake she caused was on purpose since she felt the urge to sing in that arena. She might have killed her friends but she believes they’ll be happy to die for her. This is when Shiori loses ‘her’ cool. ‘She’ chides her revolting arrogance and hates her. Shiori is going to get everyone in the world to deny her. Miku suggest they play a game. For the festival if Shiori’s school wins, Shiori can seal her power. Otherwise all the Spirits Shiori sealed and including ‘her’ will be hers. The challenge will be singing on stage. Unfair advantage? It’s lucky ‘she’ already got a chance. Meanwhile an AST member doesn’t approve of Jessica’s plan of fighting Touka in the crowded area during the festival. Furthermore, a human’s name (Shido) is on the target list too. Well, if there is anything bugging her, take it to the higher ups. Oh, there is also an order to keep this a secret from Origami.

Episode 6
Finally! Mana appears. In a hospital bed. Too bad she got taken away by some agents. That’s all the screen time she will have today. I don’t know how but the 3 stooges recruited Shiori, Touka and Origami into their band for the festival. Touka is sad that the drum part she wanted is already taken but is more than happy to settle for the tambourine. Oh… Origami sings well! While Origami is in the locker, her AST colleague on pretence of talking to herself speaks about Jessica’s plan. She leaves it in Origami’s hands. As the festival begins, Shiori and the girls are doing a maid cafe first. Maids! Even the twins are here to help out. Miku pays a visit and wants to date Shiori. Things seem to be going on well as long Shiori doesn’t lose her cool. Too bad that won’t last long because during a shooting gallery when Miku fails to shoot a target, she uses her voice for the stall owner to give her the prize. Shiori is not amused because this is like stealing. Miku believes they are honoured to give it to her and besides, humans are playthings. Now this just riles Shiori up. ‘She’ will prove and show what humans can do and is more determined to win. Miku dares her. If ‘she’ can get on the stage, that is. Shiori will soon find out what that means since only Touka is with ‘her’ at the backstage. The 3 stooges claim they don’t want to perform anymore since Miku told them not to. She got them. Since she’s going to play dirty, might as well put their own rules as well. Kotori authorizes the use of using a recorder and Shiori will have to lip synch.

They also cut the power when Miku is on stage. However she transforms into her Spirit outfit and the concert resumes. Everyone is so awed with her performance that Shiori suddenly believes there is no chance of winning. Hey, where is your confidence? Thankfully the twins are here to help fill in. Meanwhile, Jessica and her DEM Wizards arrive at the city and are about to start their mission when before them is Origami. She is shocked that Origami is wielding a forbidden and failed but very destructive weapon, White Licorice. Jessica changes their orders to take her down but they can’t even touch her. Not even Bandersnatches reinforcements can take her down. You go girl! Jessica calls for backup but the AST girls feign she called the wrong number. Besides, they got orders from their superiors not to fight, right? Shiori and co take to the stage. This should be easier than the dating, right? Well… As it begins, the vocal track is missing. It got damaged during the concurrent attack. Looks like Shiori will have to get by ‘herself’. Shiori starts panicking when Touka starts singing. Hey, she’s good. Go with the flow! Their performance is a blast. Meanwhile Origami continues to kick as so much so Jessica is getting desperate and firing all she’s got. Of course Origami is at her limit and starts bleeding. Jessica relishes giving some pay back.

Episode 7
Miku’s school wins the stage performance! Miku is so confident in counting her chickens till the announcement that Shido’s school wins the overall festival. She cannot believe this. Shiori had to explain about friendship and teamwork but Miku is clearly a sore loser and will not accept this. She materializes a giant organ and controls everyone in the hall. Miku is going to have her way with Shiori when so happen she felt upon something odd while prodding his body. OMFG! Shiori is a boy! Oh, the horror! Shiori will pay for this deception. Shiori can’t get close to Miku as she summons Yoshino and the twins to protect her. They also attack Shiori but surprisingly Touka saves ‘her’. She isn’t infected because she had ear monitors in both ears because she feared she lose her rhythm and tempo during the performance. Shiori calls Fraxinus for help but unfortunately Kotori and most of the crew are hypnotized. Kotori is going to use her cannon and blast everything but is knocked out by Mana. Jessica is on the verge of defeating Origami but here comes Mana, defecting from DEM Industries and kicking her butt real good. She gives warning and lets them off. Shiori and Touka’s problem is compounded when Ellen joins in the scene. Since Jessica’s team failed to complete their mission, she’ll retrieve them. Touka throws Shiori away and fights Ellen. Unfortunately she gets captured and finds herself strapped in a chair in their base. Interrogation time. As night falls, the town is in chaos as all the mind controlled people are looking for Shido. He is hiding in some building when he is approached by Kurumi. She knows he is in a pinch. Shido begs for her help. She brings him to Miku’s place since nobody will be around and the plan is to get her out of the way. In her room, Kurumi fools around wanting Shido to wear a bra. She would really love to see him up close cross-dressed. Some cliché moments of Kurumi falling over him and that little wound on his face just begs the scene of her licking it. Shido then sees a CD of Tsukino Yoimachi lying around. Kurumi puts the CD and a picture frame between her head and her Zafkiel gun. Don’t worry. She’s not doing kamikaze. The bullet gives her memories held by anything it pierces. After that, they head back to the stage to face head on with Miku. Because this is the best way to bring him to Miku. But how he wants to reason with her, he’s on his own. Well, first they got to get past those brainwashed people surrounding them.

Episode 8
Kurumi puts some spell all over the area that has everyone caught in her shadow unable to move. However they could still do so if Miku orders them. Kurumi summons her clones to fight the onslaught. She then lets Shido and Miku talk out together in some empty space while she holds down the rest. Miku is not pleased to be with Shido. But Shido is pleading for Miku to join forces with him to go save Touka. This serves to enrage Miku further as she thinks he is bluffing because she doesn’t believe he would care someone so much. Before Shido could find the reason why she hates humanity, time is up and Kurumi pulls them out. Time for a tactical retreat. Kurumi praises Shido for what he is trying to do (what’s with the cheek licking and ear nibbling seduction?). The next plan now is to infiltrate DEM Industries’ building. Westcott sees Touka and doesn’t hesitate to claim he wants her power. However she is too stable for him to execute his plans. He lists down all the things that might cause her pain and hits bull’s eye when she reacts to the suggestion of someone she loves dies before her. Shido is the one closest to her, right? Looks like it’s set. Shido and Kurumi are outside the building when the spacequake alert sounds. It is not that another Spirit is around. It is a sign they don’t want the public to see how nasty things are going to get. Tons of Bandersnatches and Wizards are going to take the duo down. Change of plans. Kurumi will stall them with her clones while Shido infiltrates. But first, Mana shoots Kurumi down although we know this isn’t enough to kill her. The grudge still runs deep. Looks like she’ll guide Shido in and is really happy to see him. How many episodes has it been since she last saw him?

Miku is still annoyed by the fact that Shido cares a lot about Touka and demands some truthful answers from her controlled girls. She gets even more annoyed to hear that Shido is the kind who doesn’t hesitate to put his life on the line to save someone dear. Kotori and Fraxinus crew return to normal. Kotori feels bad for trying to kill him earlier. But she is still against him going Rambo into the headquarters. She reluctantly agrees since she knows he won’t back down and will help as much as she can. But when he is inside the building, he is on his own. Mana is forced to fight Jessica using another forbidden dangerous prototype weapon, Red Licorice. Origami’s friend won’t let her go into battle. However since she has lost everything (being suspended again and all), all the more reason why she must go to Shido’s side. If she dies, it is the end of her. Her friend threatens to kill herself if she does but Origami knows she won’t do it because it would hurt her. And so her friend also gives in to help out a little. Shido is tracked down by Wizards and pinned down. Because he wishes to save Touka so much, Sandalphon materializes in his hands. Convenient. And it leaves a devastating destruction in its wake! Even though Shido gets wounded by a stab in his hips, he continues to trudge on with his thoughts only about Touka. Why are his insides glowing???!!! I don’t remember. But could it be something to do with absorbing Efreet (in last season)?

Episode 9
Shido grows weaker the more Wizards he takes on. Surprisingly he gets help from Miku! She sounds like a tsundere that she’s not doing this because of the promise but rather she wants Touka in her collection. Jessica is going crazy. Friend or foe, she blasts everything just to get Mana. It gets worse for Mana since Ellen drops in to help. Now that it’s her turn to be in a pinch, it’s time for Origami to return the favour and save her. Shido and Mana make their way up as they talk about things. Miku still doesn’t believe him really wanting to save Touka from his heart and tries to make a deal. If he gives Touka to her, she’ll let him get any girls he wants. Shido scolds her. His scary face enough to make her think twice about saying that again. Shido can’t understand why she hates humans so much. Wasn’t she once human too? A Spirit named Phantom gave her Spirit powers. She is surprised he knows about this. Then she lets us know how she came to be. She was an average idol who felt happy her voice reached others. Her career is blooming and would have if she had not turned down a TV offer. Actually her manager wanted to ‘introduce’ her to his friend in a TV production. She refused as she was happy enough to have people hear her song. This led to a magazine making up horrible rumours about her. Her manager didn’t do anything and worse, her fans reacted to it. Even so, she still believed in her voice. Then her worst nightmare came true. She lost her voice. Shido sympathizes with her but surely she can’t blame all of humanity for it. He believes there is someone out there who truly heard her voice and the humanity she sees is nothing more than an illusion she made up.

Still not convinced, Miku loves the voice she has now as she will always be top idol. Shido wants to hear her sing without those hypnotizing tricks and he will definitely hear it. He heard her CD and realized how much effort she put in. Miku still doesn’t believe because all her fans who betrayed her said the same thing and none of them helped. Shido says if all of what she said is true, he will be the one to save her. After all that talking and slashing their way through waves after waves of Wizards that don’t really matter, they finally reach the quarantine room. Despite Origami pulling some tricks to fight Ellen, she is still no match for the greatest Wizard. She could have been done in if not yet another help from a cannon fired by Fraxinus. Origami breaks free from her grasp. It is Origami’s lucky day since Ellen abandons the match and returns to Westcott. That guy greets Miku and Shido. Learning who Shido is, he starts laughing and finally understands everything. That woman must have planned everything out. Although he frees Touka, there is a strong glass barrier between them. While they’re so happy to see each other, I suppose Shido didn’t realize Ellen has crept up on him and stabbed him from behind! The main show has begun. Westcott gives Ellen permission to kill Shido and wants Touka to summon her Astral Dress and Angel. Touka becomes desperate. Slashing her Sandalphon against the glass that doesn’t even do a bit of a scratch. She will do anything for Shido to be spared. Anything for him to be saved. But too late. At that moment she blacks out. All her Spiritual energy turns negative. Maximum. Kotori fears Sephirot Inversion is happening. Dark creepy aura seeps all over the building and Westcott is happy the Demon Lord is back.

Episode 10
Shido is still alive but Touka has turned into a badass Spirit. So badass that she’s just scary. She has no memories of her life as Touka. Westcott is pleased because now Ellen gets to kill Touka and become the best of the best in history. Meanwhile Jessica continues to go berserk. From the way she says things, she is jealous that she wasn’t chosen like Mana or Origami. Because of that, cool and composed Mana defeat her and even soothes her she has Westcott’s approval that she is strong. Yeah. Strongest in her head maybe. Ellen fights Touka but cannot defeat her since she is not in top condition. Her wound during Origami’s fight is opening up again after she protects Westcott. So it is best to retreat. Westcott doesn’t mind since they have lots of time. I mean, he has been waiting for so long so what is waiting a little longer more for him. Shido doesn’t get any answer how Westcott knows him since they flee the scene. Oh sure. Now leave the kids to clean up the mess because Touka is now targeting them. Kotori is now able to connect with Shido but there is nothing she can do to help and the best bet is to draw out Touka via affection. You know the usual drill. Miku tries to bind Touka with her voice but it doesn’t work. It’s like her life is flashing before her eyes when Touka prepares to get rid of her. All she wanted was someone who loved her. Don’t they all? You know what this means when Yoshino and the twins are freed from Miku’s spell? No, she’s not dead. To her surprise, Shido protects her. She couldn’t believe he actually lived up to his promise. This act also has Touka start wavering but in no time she is back to her dark side. She is going to obliterate him in this instant but gets distracted by Yoshino. Miku hugs Shido and wants him to save Touka. Of course. It goes without saying. Don’t worry, he’ll be back. He has got a promise to keep, remember?

Touka unleashes a devastating blow in a single swing that cuts the city in half!!!!!!!!!!! FREAKING POWERFUL!!!!! If you think Shido is gone, think again. The twins save him. Now it’s his turn. He goes up to Touka but won’t attack. He kisses her! In addition to sealing those powers, Touka’s memories slowly regain and before you know it, her energy levels stabilize and she’s back to the Touka we all know and love. Hooray! The day is saved! Kurumi disappears back into the darkness since the target she is looking for is not in this city. In the aftermath, Miku is all over Shido! Woah! What a big change! She is making him a big exception and calls him her darling! She feels comfortable around him and believes in him as he fulfilled his promise. Well, this is better than being a b*tch, right? Better for us. Not for him. She then kisses him by her own initiative to seal her power and in the process becomes naked. Touka happen to walk in… What the heck is Shido doing? Good thing is that a catfight won’t happen because it is time for Miku to put up her concert. Her voice fills the hall and the crowd cheers aloud for her. She couldn’t be happier as she thanks everybody. Trouble starts when she starts thanking her darling. Wow. Sudden silence. Shido, now sh*t is going to hit the fan! His harem girls are interrogating him on this. So… Is this better than fighting Spirits destroying the world? Only difference is, guys don’t usually win in this harem catfights. Shido is going to need all the dating skills he have…

Date To Live
Something feels incomplete and insufficient… Well, firstly there are only 10 episodes, which coincidentally is the same number of fingers I have on both hands (read sarcasm). While this season may have added several Spirits to Shido’s harem, it fails to advance further the plot especially about Kotori’s past being a Spirit and some other big revelation which I don’t quite remember at this point. Westcott and Ellen’s appearance as antagonist and that short scene of Kotori meeting Woodman also feel like it serves to build up something in the future but as far as this season is concerned, it was all building up between a showdown between Shido and Touka since last season’s ender we had Origami going berserk and attacking. So now it is Touka’s turn so that our hero can do something about it and prove that the power of love and dating is indeed much better than all that hatred and fighting. Right? All you need to do is just kiss your enemy and peace will reign.

The most amusing characters to ever pop up are the twins. They are the big stars for this season. They are absolutely hilarious and a riot. I love the way they prod, and exchange insults with each other while vying for Shido’s affection. Sometimes it feels like they are more interested in putting each other down instead of winning over Shido. But that is their way of showing love for each other. Odd. They make twin seduction look so sexy. Is it no surprise that Shido wants both of them instead of being absorbed into the other? Because half a twin is not as fun as both of them. It is just tad sad that after their arc, they have been reduced to side characters. It would have been great if they become part of Shido’s active harem. Uh huh. After the twins are no longer the focus, it feels like the series ‘died down’ and it wasn’t as fun as it was supposed to be anymore.

Is it me or that Miku is a spoof of that popular Vocaloid character, Hatsune Miku? Notice the same first name and the same profession as idols? Big coincidence? Only, Hatsune Miku is much cuter because I thought Miku is a little chubby…Whoops! Plus, Miku hating humanity especially men is a big minus point and that takes away her cutie charm. Unless you are one of those masochistic kind then there is nothing much to say. I believe Miku although has accepted Shido whole-heartedly, I don’t think she has gotten over her abhorrence over men. She might be seen giving her whole-hearted performance in the end to her fans that consist evenly of both genders but that is only she can’t see their faces clearly on stage. Even so, I think she doesn’t detest guys like she does in the beginning although there would still be feelings of disgust. The exception is of course Shido. He is always the exception for any reason, right? That’s why all the Spirits and non-Spirit girls alike love him.

Well, it’s great that Shido has added a few more Spirits to his harem but this season doesn’t feel like he went on a date with them or any of the existing ones. Except for the first episode where that short dating scene feels like it is supposedly to remind us what this show is about and how it works. Because clearly missing are the ‘fun’ and oddly hilarious choices that appear on the date that Shido is supposed to follow through as picked by those ‘experts’ in Ratatoskr. The twins are a great addition to his harem although personally I would have preferred them to be more active instead of being side-lined. I think they can be top runners for Shido instead of the usual Touka and Origami. But I have a hunch it would eventually be Shido x Touka not only based on the final episode’s event but a big hint in the ending credits animation as well. See them holding hands? I get a feeling Miku too would become part of his harem despite her initial tsundere-like attitude and her displaced hatred towards men. But I knew Shido could do the job ;p. Because it would be sad and a waste if Miku didn’t end up liking him as we don’t need another Spirit who really isn’t part of the harem as we already have Kurumi in that role (not by his side often, that is). Sure, she likes him in her twisted manner but not the kind that harem lovers would want. After all, that is why we watch this series, right? Besides, the dating parts are the most hilarious parts of the show anyway.

Other returning characters feel identifiable with their quirky traits like Touka who is still the gullible and naive Spirit (docile form, that is) and most likely always loses out to Origami’s sly tactics. It is fun to see them arguing to get Shido’s attention but too bad there aren’t many of such instances and only confined to the beginning. Then there is Kotori for a big majority of this season is confined in Fraxinus. She has never meet Shido in person for this entire season except for that short scene back home back in the first episode. Kannadzuki continues to be the biggest idiot and an even bigger masochist (because during Miku’s mind control over town, it was obvious that he loves the physical abuse as Kotori’s chair when he is clearly not hypnotized at all) but surprisingly shows lots of competency when Kotori isn’t around when Fraxinus is in a pinch. It goes to show that he isn’t a total idiot after all. But seriously, his role still feels like a comic relief more than anything.

However once more, Yoshino again feels very much underutilized. It is like she doesn’t even matter anymore. I thought this season will at least give her some decent screen time although I won’t be hoping much. Unfortunately she has been reduced to a mere side character whose existence is mainly watching some TV soap opera in the first half. Like as though this was necessary so we don’t forget she actually exists. And then comes the second half, she became an underling of Miku. Oh sure. What a way to treat your loli Spirit. Hope you don’t earn her icy wrath or the rage of her fans. Kurumi’s role in this season also feels forced although she does play a little significant role in Miku’s arc (in helping to discover Miku’s true past as a human). My big guess is that she is looking for Woodman or Westcott. Guys like them are most likely to be involved in something big or that smells of conspiracy on a galactic scale, right? But other than that, we enjoy watching Kurumi make her bold seduction moves on Shido (is he just stunned when she does all that?) because all of us guys would love to have such girlfriend do such on us (if you have one, that is).

Mana also feels a little redundant. Just like last season, appearing only after halfway of the series. Again it feels like she is brought in so that we remember this onii-chan loving girl still exists. And when she does appear, she goes into battle. What happened to her in the end? Don’t know. Same case with Origami. In the beginning it looks like this girl may have some decent screen time but ever since Miku’s arc, she has been reduced to a mere side character. Like as though she and Mana are in this arc plot just to stop Jessica. Uh huh. It feels like why Jessica is here too in the first place. For Mana and Origami to put up a fight with. In the end, it doesn’t really matter for them because I don’t know what happened to Origami after her lost duel with Ellen. She gets picked up by the twins and that’s the last you’ll ever see of her. Heck, she wasn’t even with Shido and his Spirit harem during Miku’s concert. Where the heck are you Origami? From what I can see, overall Origami’s life is spiralling out of control, don’t you agree? Now that she is most likely to be suspended or kicked out of AST, the only reason she has to live for is Shido. He is her sanity but sometimes she loves teasing him so much that it makes her look like she is the crazy one. We all know how crazy Origami can be when she is before Shido, right?

The 3 stooges are around and it feels like they have more screen time than the first season. Also I noticed that third girl whose line will forever be “Majihiku wa” (Gross) is more talkative than ever despite she only says the same thing over and over again. Whether it is something happy or sad, it is always “Majihiku wa”! So ironic that even when she puts up her smiling face and in favourable conditions that she can be heard saying this. What the heck is it that is so gross? It’s like God forgot to calibrate her vocals and had it stuck there therefore she can’t say anything more than this. And it’s like everyone ‘understands’ or don’t give a damn each time she says this. Uh huh. It’s also like a cue that it is her turn to speak after the first 2 stooges had their lines. Feels complete, huh?

Although the action parts this season doesn’t disappoint, it isn’t anything to shout about either. The twins in particular have a lot of firepower in their weapons despite they dress like S&M queens in their Spirit form. Miku’s weapon doesn’t feel like the offensive kind because mostly she brainwashes and mind controls others. Even her organ pipes that shoot out sound waves doesn’t feel as badass as the other Spirits. Some fights involving AST and Wizards also feel forced because like I said, it is one of the few scenes were AST members like Mana and Origami (as well as Kurumi’s clones) can shine and do some ass kicking. Otherwise their fight feels like a slight distraction from what is going on. How else can both of them whip asses of so many AST counterparts and Wizards? Sure, whatever weaponry they have is superior to what all those low ranking counterparts. It shows our heroines are clearly underestimated or the higher ups don’t think much of them and armed them with less powerful technologies. But we’re not here for the action, right? More harem please!

New and joining the line-up this season are Maaya Uchida (Rikka in Chuunibyou Demo Koi Ga Shitai) as Kaguya and Sarah Emi Bridcutt as Yuzuru (Asuka in Mondaijitachi Ga Isekai Kara Kuru Sou Desu Yo Ne). Hearing Miku at first felt familiar and I couldn’t put my finger on where have I heard this voice before. Only subsequently I guessed it right it is Minori Chihara (I got lucky, huh?). As long as she doesn’t put up her dead expression like Nagato in Suzumiya Haruhi No Yuutsu, Chiaki in Minami-ke, Horizon in Kyoukai Senjou No Horizon or Hina in Busou Shinki, I think it will be hard for me to guess her. Of course she has voiced characters like Miku such as Touka in Saki and Mitsuki in Kyoukai No Kanata. Other new casts include Shizuka Itou as Ellen (Haruka in Amagami SS), Yuko Kaida as Jessica (Ryoumou in Ikkitousen), Ryotaro Okiayu as Westcott (Byakuya in Bleach) and Jouji Nakata as Woodman (Kirei in Fate/Stay Night).

Sweet Arms who did the opening theme for last season once more sings the opener for this sequel entitled Trust In You, a dramatic rock pop piece. Kaori Sadohara sings the ending theme, Day To Story, which sounds more serious (because it has “Dead or alive” in is lyrics) compared to last season’s ending piece that I found a little funny. At least last season there were a handful of special ending themes but there is only one this season, My Treasure by Minori Chihara which is the song Miku sang in her concert in the last episode. What do you expect with mere 10 episodes? Oh yeah. 2 episodes short is a lot… Oh, I also thought that the other damning verdict that Yoshino is completely side-lined is because since her seiyuu, Iori Nomizu sung most of the ending themes in the first season but here she has none. It would have been amusing had there been a duet of Kaguya and Yuzuru as a special ending theme but…

Overall, this season might have a lot of missed opportunities and it leaves a lot to be desired. But it isn’t all that bad and it is still fun in its own right although personally I thought it falls short compared to the first season. It might seem silly that you date something or someone that is deemed a global threat and you seal that power with a kiss but this is much better than going for genocide, right? After all, Spirits are like humans too because they have feelings and want to be loved. Overflowing negative and unstable emotions are bad and can destroy. If you think about it, feelings of humans in real life resemble closely to the Spirits here. Because, say if you forget your wife or girlfriend’s anniversary or birthday (it may be trivial to you but such events are anything but trivial to them), then you’d expect hell to come. Winter is coming. The world is going to end. And everything calms down back to normalcy once you make it up to them. Pretty similar, huh?

Date A Live OVA

February 21, 2014

Because there wasn’t enough screen time for Shido x Origami, Date A Live OVA serves to do just that. Well, at least for the first half of it. And yes, also as an appetizer before the start of the second season. You need to refresh your memory and whip up your appetite before the second round of main course arrives, right? Well, don’t bother about the serious plot or any kind of storyline development in this OVA. Because this OVA serves to do what its name suggests: Date. Yeah. Shido on a date. That’s what we all are here to watch, right?

Date To Date
It starts off with Shido telling Origami that he is a lolicon. Guess what? Origami approves! Then he goes on to elaborate the extreme mother complex and siscon fetish he has to the point that average viewers would find it repulsive that he mentions about putting her panties over his face. And so? Origami approves! But his playboy excuse of visiting go-go girls doing the lambada dance pouring champagne all over did invoke some sort of reaction. Exterminate all of them! Shido is now panicking. Kotori tells him not to lose it as they’re in the middle of a date. So it all began when Origami wants to go out with him and he has no chance to say no. Because he felt guilty of giving her the wrong idea that he likes her, he can’t toy with her feelings anymore. Kotori will help him out and suggests he makes her hate him. At the park where she waits, Shido enters the scene and as instructed, does not compliment her dress. So what should she dress? Let the experts handle the options… The results? Dress in a swimsuit with dog ears and tails! Think Origami will hit and hate him? She runs off to the store and comes back dressed as one! There is such a store nearby? Instructions to mock her got worse. She really gets down on all fours and acts like a dog! She then steals his belt and uses it as her collar! I wonder what everyone in public will think. They’re into this kind of play, eh? At the café, Origami wants to go to the toilet but Kotori instructs him not to let her. Her reaction? He wants her to do it right in front of him?! She’s really going to do it when Shido tries to stop her but trips. He accidentally rips her skirt. She’s willing to get down and dirty with him. This confirms it. ORIGAMI IS A PERVERT!!!!!!! The only way left is to date her and then dump her. So Shido is left to practice his lines. Meanwhile, Touka was sent on a shopping errand so as not to interfere with the date. Because there is an item on the list she is not familiar, she calls Shido for help. Unknowingly, she hears him say those break up lines. It hurts. Shido realizes too late it is Touka on the other line. A mini explosion is heard nearby. Shido is forced to go sooth her because if her mental spirit declines, it will become unstable and you know what kind of disaster will happen. Shido finds the park she is at a mini crater. He becomes the smooth talker that he doesn’t hate her and will forever be with her. Although this cheers Touka up, suddenly Origami comes hugging Shido. She heard everything and is certain what Shido said was towards her (somehow Shido left his handphone on when Origami called him earlier about his whereabouts). The girls get into an argument as Kotori discovers Origami’s enjoyment level has topped up to the maximum. She really enjoyed everything, didn’t she?

Now it’s Shido’s turn to date Touka. After all, you can’t leave this pair out. We see Touka taking out her frustrations at the video arcade. Yeah. She even destroyed the machine. Felt good, no? It all began when as usual in class, Touka and Origami are at each other’s neck again. Accusing the other for being in the way. Because Shido wasn’t paying attention to this, he receives word from Kotori that Touka’s mental condition is becoming unstable. The Spirit power he sealed may flow back in reverse so it’s good to let her let out some stress. And that means taking her out to the video arcade. For every game she plays, Origami is envisioned as the enemy as Touka happily takes this b*tch out. Including breaking the machine. That really hits the spot. Don’t worry. Ratatoskr has made arrangements with the video arcade to replace damaged machines. Reine detects that despite Touka’s mental spirit improving, her uneasy stats remain high like as though she is worried about something. Touka wants Shido to take a photo with her but since she is too embarrassed she takes it alone. Then at the crane game, Touka wants to do it by herself or else it won’t mean a thing. Though she it is successful, it got stuck halfway. Leave it to her to beat up the machine! There you go. At the end of the day, Touka gives the handphone strap prize to him and hopes he won’t hate her. Where did she get this idea? Origami told her that humans will not accept Spirits who will destroy this world. Therefore Shido hates Spirits too. Of course Shido brushes that off. If he really hated her, he wouldn’t have dated her. Really? Really. Really for real? Really for really for real? Really for really for really for really for real? Yeah. We get the point, Touka. And so her uneasiness fades away as he lets her keep the prize. Back in class, everyone notices her good mood. She ambiguously explains how Shido took her to a fun place and there was hitting that made her feel ecstasy! It felt so good! Everyone is starting to suspect what kind of freakish hobby they had when the picture falls out from the pocket. It’s Touka posing naked! Why naked? Because Reine told her to do that when taking photos. Shido runs for his life before the class bays for his blood. Along the way Origami stops him to hand him her handphone strap which she won at the same crane game yesterday. Now they’ve got a matching set. When Touka sees it, she notes it is a matching set too.

Date To Dead…
As far as this single OVA is concerned, everything was pretty much fun. The dating woes he has to do just to settle the issue. I suppose this is what happens when you let a bunch of ‘experts’ make the decision instead of yourself. But would it be better if Shido made his own? At least Shido didn’t try to date both of them at the same time. That would have been a real disaster. Origami’s over the top weirdness would make everyone confirm that she is some sort of masochistic pervert. Maybe she’ll only be in this mode with Shido around. She is not shy or embarrassed to do what he wants, which actually throws Shido off his balance. And she does it with great confidence despite that deadpan face. That’s what makes her scary. You don’t know what she is thinking or going to do. But expect her to do the unexpected. It is going to be really interesting to see this girl sticking around in his harem. Touka on the other hand felt and sounded like a total (cute) retard from start till finish. The kind that needs reassurances from Shido if she’s going to stay happy like a child. So much so in a way that I may have forgotten that she was a Spirit with the possibility to destroy Earth with those spacequakes. But isn’t Touka mostly like that after her powers were sealed by Shido? Well, there weren’t any other dangers for them to transform and fight so I guess we won’t see her serious side. Fans of Yoshino would be sorely disappointed that she doesn’t make a single appearance here (the opening credits do not count). Though, as far as I remember she isn’t the front runner for Shido’s attention compared to Touka and Origami. So when it comes down to dating girls, you must be prepared for the unexpected. Know the girl you are dating and always be yourself. See, I’m already an expert.

Date A Live

October 20, 2013

I thought the premise of this show was interesting, if not then, amusing. In Date A Live, a terrible space phenomenon called spacequakes has been devastating the planet and causing lots of casualties as well as damage in properties. A short moment of destruction can annihilate all the hard work and development that we put in over the decades. But that’s not the point. It is discovered that a mysterious female race from outer space crashing into Earth is the cause of these spacequakes. Of course the obvious solution is to eliminate them so they will not cause any future disaster. However there is an organization that believes in saving them without having to resort to taking lives. How? Date them. Make them fall in love. Yes. You read that right. And so that is why I find it ironic that to save the world from the most dangerous things from space, you use dating and love to win over them. Funny, right? I guess they’re trying to tell us that violence is not the answer and that love and peace are the way. But really. Trying to teach those beings about love and date when we ourselves don’t resort to such? What are we taking them and ourselves for? Oh what the heck. You’ll never know if you don’t try. Besides, who wouldn’t want to date such beings if they look like cute girls. Yeah. Thank God they look like cute anime girls.

So as you have guessed, there is this single guy who is the main protagonist of this harem show that will have the power to date several of these beings known as Spirits under the watchful eye of the organization. See how lucky this guy is? Well, what good would Earth be when it is destroyed and no more girls left to date? Can I trade places with him? Which brings me to this other amusing thing during the course of the ‘date’. I don’t know what programme they use but at ‘critical points’ whereby you are supposed to make a decision that determines the course of where the date is going (those who play dating simulations might understand this better), they can actually pick up the choices of that girl for his next course of action. It’s really like playing a dating simulation but in real life, eh? What happens if you don’t pick one of those choices and opt for something not listed? Hmm… It’s not really addressed here but really, this choice selection is amusing. If only guys had such a useful programme to tell them and narrow down what to do next, I think lots of dates will end up well. Or maybe not. What good is a guy if he can’t think and make his own decisions and needs to rely on onscreen choices for his next move? That’ll be a step close to a bad end, right?

Episode 1
30 years ago, a devastating spacequake claimed the lives of millions and devastated the land between China and Mongolia. Shido Itsuka gets a typical wakeup call from his sister, Kotori. He manages to scare her off with some tickling virus threat. Shido narrates about the spacequake that happened 30 years ago. For the next 6 months, it happened frequently all over the world and the place they are staying now is one of it. Why it happened remains a mystery. It died down but the phenomenon started again 5 years ago and this time it seems to be happening more frequently in Japan. Shido sees off Kotori and they promise to meet at the diner after school. A group of watching girls (3 stooges) think he has sister complex. Gross. Shido’s friend, Hiroto Tonomachi greets him and the girls think they also swing this way. Gross. In class, Tonomachi shows Shido his girlfriend: A girl from a dating sim. That still counts, right? Shido is puzzled that the genius beauty who sits next to him, Origami Tobiichi knows him. Tamae Okamine becomes the class’ homeroom teacher. During recess, a warning that a spacequake is approaching the area so everyone evacuates to the nearby underground shelter. Shido is worried about Kotori and to his dismay, his GPS tracks her position still at the diner. He rushes off to find her only to get caught in a spacequake. At least at the edge of it. In the centre of the crater, there is this beautiful babe that seems to have jumped out from a fantasy battle manga. She almost kills him with her sword because she thinks he is out to kill her. However her attention is turned to a group of space babes (like as though they jumped out from some space battle manga) who are attacking her. Shido couldn’t understand why the fantasy battle girl looks so sad despite being very strong. Shido recognizes one of the space babes as Origami. The girls fight and the impact was so great that everything whites out.

When Shido opens his eyes, he is being treated by the analysis officer, Reine Murasame. I’m sure he has tons of questions to ask so Reine takes him to see the vice commander, Kyouhei Kannadzuki (I think he is a masochist). Even more shocking, he sees Kotori as the commander of this organization, Ratatoskr. Besides, she is not the cute little sister she knows but an arrogant insulting brat. She starts explaining that battle fantasy girl is called a Spirit and is responsible for spacequakes. Each time they come to Earth, a phenomenon like this happens. Those space babes are called AST. Anti-Spirit Team. They are part of JSDF and their job is to kill Spirits. There is another way to kill them and that requires Shido’s help. He will start that training tomorrow. This is too much for him to take but Shido is told to shut up and obey. All this from his sister? Who is she really anyway? He is still concerned about her waiting at the diner so she calls him a fool for believing that. About her tracker, they are actually flying in a ship called Fraxinus hovering above the diner. And so Reine becomes Tamae’s assistant in class (feels like Reine has not enough sleep). So why did she become that? So that she’ll be able to reach him in case anything happens. And this training Shido is supposed to undergo… Is it some kind of dating sim? Yes it is but with Shido as the main star. From the unenthusiastic narrative, I can guess that the goal of this sim is to have Shido date the Spirits so that they would stop the spacequakes when they realize the world looks much better in love. WTF. Later, Origami confronts Shido and wants him to forget ever having seen her or the entire thing. She has a grudge against the Spirit because 5 years ago her parents were killed.

Episode 2
Shido completes a route of the dating sim! Hooray! In school, he thought Reine was going to seduce him but it turns out she was just putting a mini invisible earpiece. Shido’s first training is to seduce Tamae. Why? If he can’t date a human, how can he expect to date a Spirit? Some logic. Since Shido is nervous, the girls provide him backup on what to say. Like how he compliments every part of her including her book. Then he said the wrong thing that flips her switch: He wants to marry her! Suddenly Tamae becomes the ambitious woman looking forward to it. Run away while you still can! Shido bumps into Origami whom Kotori thinks would be another good training. Origami agrees to everything what Shido is made to say (including sniffing the PE uniform). She also agrees to go out with him on a date. Just then the spacequake alert sounds. This time the school is the centre of the hit.  Because AST can’t engage indoors, this is Shido’s chance to put to good use his training. He agrees to help out since he doesn’t want to see that expression on Princess (codename for that fantasy battle girl). Kotori assures him she has ‘experts’ in the field of relationships to help him out. More like losers if you ask me. Multiple marriages, divorces, grudges and obsessions… Yeah. Real experts alright. Shido confronts Princess and she nearly kills him. He tries to convince her he is not the enemy when Kotori detects Princess’ mental state. It turns out to be 3 choices like you see in dating sims. Serious? She even has her experts to select which choice! Wrong choice and it’s bye-bye. Well, Shido almost got killed several times anyway. I guess he shouldn’t listen to those blokes.

Princess is not convinced he is not here to kill her but he finally catches her attention when he says he wants to talk to her and will never reject her. Princess turns into a tsundere… Needing to come up with a suitable name for her, Kotori thinks her ‘experts’ aren’t enough and seeks the opinion of the people of the world. At least those who are playing that dating sim. None are good. Till Shido suggests Touka. Princess likes it. Actually that naming sense came from because he first met her on the tenth of this month. AST moves in to shoot Touka once she is visible but her shield protects her. She wants Shido to escape but he asserts he is her to talk to her. And so while they’re firing away, the duo talk. Touka doesn’t remember who she is. All she remembers is that when she first materialized here, there were mech people trying to kill her. Kotori detects Touka’s mood meter as very high and wants Shido to ask her on a date. She has her entire crew egging him to do that. AST stops shooting when they realize Touka is not coming out. Once Origami gets a clear view that Touka is talking to Shido, she flies in between them. She thinks he has been held hostage. Both girls prepare for another power fight. In the end, Origami lost, injured and was stretchered away. Her superior chides her for such recklessness and the next time she could pay with her life. Next day, Shido visits the devastated school. Like it’s all a dream. Then he hears Touka calling him. What the? Why is she here? Why is there no spacequake alert? Seems she is looking forward to the date he is talking about. She is eager to go on one. Since her fantasy battle outfit won’t do, Shido has her transform into his school’s uniform. There. Looks much better.

Episode 3
Suddenly… Touka is like an eager beaver happy girl on a date! She isn’t the sad Spirit like we know her. She is curious with everything. She eats everything. She has fun with everything. Is this what a date is all about? Not quite as Shido puts it. Yeah. True dates are complex, eh? They enter an expensive diner and Shido is surprised to see Kotori and her Ratatoskr team as spies. I think they’re enjoying watching the date too. After giving Touka an overkill meal (does she have a Black Hole as stomach?), they are made to head south. The residential area is turned into a makeshift shopping arcade. Conveniently they are the 100,000th customer so they get to eat everything for free. Good news for Touka, yeah? Origami has been spying on them but she can’t get into gear since Kotori has been trying to interfere with their communication. Touka wins the grand prize to the Dream Park. Uhm… Why does it look like a love hotel?! Touka wants to go in. Shido doesn’t. He takes her to play a crane game instead. They try their best to get a bread pillow. They lost by an inch but Touka got so worked up that she yells at the machine that they tried so hard. And it’s like it listened to her and fall out. I don’t know if Ratatoskr had a hand in this. Shido and Touka talk at the park. Origami has gotten into her gear and is observing them from afar. She finds it odd that a boy is dating a Spirit. Nothing of this sort has happened before. Then she gets the green light from her superior to take her out.

Shido convinces Touka that on today’s ‘date’, nobody tried to kill her. She understands why AST was after her. She tried to destroy this beautiful planet. She thinks she shouldn’t be here. Shido disagrees because she didn’t cause any spacequake today. Touka is not convinced it won’t happen again. Shido will teach her and provide her with shelter and food. Still not convinced? If the world rejects her, he will accept her more. Just when she is about to grab his hand, Shido senses something amiss. Origami has fired a shot but Shido uses his body to shield Touka (there goes the bread pillow too). OMG! Is Shido dead?! That pool of blood… Origami is in shock. Shido is in shock. Then it turns into despair. And then anger. She concludes the world rejected her and summons her battle gear. Screw this world! Summoning Sandalphon, she swings her giant sword, Halvanhelev at the direction of the sniper. I think the mountain was nearly flattened. While Origami is sitting in shock that she is no different than a Spirit for killing a human, enraged Touka strikes and strikes Halvanhelev at her. Only her barrier is what is protecting her from being killed. Of course it won’t last forever. At this rate, the entire city might be flattened. Kotori is unfazed. Unlike her team, she is confident Shido won’t die so easily. Suddenly something sparks from within Shido and he revives! What the?! Origami is about to accept death when Shido is sent flying in that direction. Touka’s priority is to catch him. Surprise to see him alive? But Halvanhelev is going critical and will cause a massive spacequake. How do you stop overloading it? Kotori taught him a method. They need to kiss. Shido stammers while he explains what a kiss is. No time for long chat. Touka makes the first bold move to kiss him on the lips. Everything calms down and reverts to normal. That includes disintegrating Touka’s clothes. Stark naked. But she is worried if he would take her out on another date. Of course. Happy once more. Finally, Tamae introduces Touka as a new transfer student in Shido’s class.

Episode 4
On a rainy day, Shido helps a little girl in cloak up. But she gets afraid and doesn’t want him to touch her. In class, Origami apologizes to Shido. What does this scene look like? A genius bowing her head to a nobody? Shido is facing competition from Touka and Origami to taste their cookies. Oh yeah. Let the harem fight begin. This is why we watch this show, right? So competitive that the duo are right down to technicalities on whose cookie he ate faster. When he goes home, he is surprised to see Touka in the shower. As explained by Kotori, she is living here. Didn’t Shido say it was okay for her to stay? Unless that was just part of the act. Oh, Reine is here too. They explain after he kissed Touka, he sealed her Spirit power. There is an invisible link called Pass between them now. Why he is the only one who can do this is unknown but the analysis on him indicated that he is able to do the sealing. That’s why he was chosen. But the seal can be broken and her power returns if her mental state becomes unstable. Since she is more at ease with him, she will stay here till a proper home for Spirits is built. Apparently Touka isn’t the only Spirit. There are others too. So consider this as his training. I wonder if Shido can withstand all the hijinks situation. Why is it every time it has to be that ‘coincidental’ meeting in the toilet? Must be a tiring day, huh? Even more tiring when there is this harem competition in class! Touka and Origami want to eat lunch with him. Can they all eat lunch together? Suddenly the spacequake alert is sounded. Shido goes off to Fraxinus while Touka is left in Tamae’s care. Since Touka’s powers are sealed, she is nothing than a normal girl. Reine doesn’t want Touka to be exposed to the battles that will stress her.

The Spirit detected this time is Hermit (little cloak girl). Shido says he has met her before but there was no spacequake disturbance detected at that time. Because AST is indiscriminately firing at Hermit while she is just running, Shido wants to save this girl. I guess it’s another date. Shido meets Hermit inside a shopping complex. However it is Hermit’s hand puppet rabbit, Yoshinon that is doing the talking. Bratty and sarcastic. Of course there is that interface on the choice of reply. Once more, the ‘experts’ have their say but all the options end up in a tie so Kotori tells Shido to go for the arrogant and challenging choice. Yoshinon finds him funny but when he mentions about ventriloquism, the mood suddenly sinks. Kotori warns the need to cheer her up so he changes the topic and ask her out on a date. Hermit is fooling around and slips, she falls on him and their lips met. But a dangerous aura is detected nearby. It is Touka! She was worried about him and slipped out to look for him. And what did she find? He is fooling around with another girl and kissed her! This is going to be sticky. Her Spirit powers are returning. Yoshinon did not help either as it sarcastically teases Touka that Shido got bored with her. Touka naively got dragged into the rabbit’s pace. Touka grabs Yoshinon away. Hermit tries to grab the rabbit back but she is not giving it back to her. Her mood is sinking very fast and Shido hopes Touka could give it back to her. She misinterprets he is on Hermit’s side. But too late, Hermit summons her giant monster bunny, Zadkiel and rampages through the place via its icy attack. She breaks through outside. AST fires but lost her. Although Shido is slightly injured, I guess Touka is still hurting inside her heart. Man, this is going to be troublesome.

Episode 5
Touka locks herself in her room and won’t see Shido. So she gets some counselling from Reine about her ‘love’ problem. Reine says the kiss was an accident and if Shido didn’t care for her, he would not have saved her from that icy attack then. Shido finds Hermit in the rain. Seems she is looking for Yoshinon that she has lost during AST’s attack. He will help her to look for it and learns her name is Yoshino. Shido brings her back home since her stomach is growling. While he is making her food, Yoshino explains that Yoshinon is her ideal and hero. As she is too timid, the rabbit has all the qualities she wanted. She flusters when Shido says he likes her the way she is now. As for why she doesn’t attack back, she hates being hurt and doesn’t like scary things. When things get scary, that’s why Yoshinon is always there to be her hero. It makes her feel okay. Shido vows to find Yoshinon but the rabbit will no longer be her hero because he will be its replacement. He tries to apologize for that accidental kiss. I don’t know why he has to demonstrate to explain what a kiss is. Touka barges in ready to apologize but sees this… Back to square one. Yoshino disappears from sight. Shido gets a call from Kotori saying she has found Yoshinon. It is in Origami’s place. She picked it up after the last battle. He makes his way there and it’s like she expected him. Why in a maid outfit? And the tea… Looks like poison. It is poison! Almost died. She goes on top of him and tries to seduce him. But in exchange in removing herself, he wants him to address her by her first name like he did for Touka. So that is what’s bugging her? When she goes off to take a shower (of all times), he starts looking for Yoshinon and finds some of her possessions questionable. Still waters run deep… When she comes out, she questions him about the time he died. She was sure she shot him. Though he doesn’t know, he asks back if she had talk to a Spirit before. There may be bad Spirits but Touka and Yoshino are nice ones. He wants to save them and doesn’t want Origami to kill them as she is a nice person too. Origami gets a mission call so Shido asks one last question if she would attack a Spirit who had lost her power. All she says is that she cannot disregard a superior’s order for her personal feeling.

AST chases Yoshino all over town. She becomes so scared that she summons Zadkiel before she gets killed. Its icy breath freezes the city over and AST can’t come near her. Shido tries to talk to Yoshino but a blast from Origami hits Zadkiel. It is preparing to fire at Shido’s way. Touka sees this and knows he won’t survive the direct hit. She summons Sandalphon to protect him. She apologizes for what happened but Shido needs her help now to save Yoshino. It is not that she is more important than her. She is also a Spirit like her and he promised he would save her. Touka realized she forget he once saved her. AST realizes the icy barrier is getting thicker and more dangerous. With Touka in the picture, AST shifts their priority to capture her. Kotori warns Shido about entering the barrier because his healing may not be fast enough as it is not a single shot but multiple blasts. If Yoshino detects his Spirit Force, she will freeze him solid and won’t heal in time. Shido realizes some Spirit power is doing the fast healing but he is going in anyway. He finally reaches Yoshino in the middle of the blizzard to bring her Yoshinon. He barely made it and is injured all over. Thankfully his healing kicks in. Yoshino is happy and grateful for him. Shido is hesitating about sealing her power with a kiss. But this time Yoshino believes in him and makes her first bold move to kiss him. All the ice melts away and the bright blue sky returns. Oh, I forgot that the sealing also makes the loli naked… Later Kotori shows Shido a place that they have made for Spirits. Touka will finally move out and live here with Yoshino.

Episode 6
Shido seeks permission from Kotori to take the Spirits to Tenguu Gokuraku Hotspring since they wanted to visit one. Kotori approves as they’ll do anything to keep the Spirits happy. Because Kannadzuki is being his usual annoying masochistic lolicon, Kotori punishes him to dig a hole for a week. Due to the recent Spirit counter attack screw ups, Origami’s superior, Captain is being reprimanded by her higher up. Because of that and the increase in Spirit attacks, the company trip she has been looking forward to is cancelled. Bad mood… “I hate Spirits!”. Don’t worry. Her colleagues had planned something to reward her and invite Captain to Tenguu Gokuraku Hotspring. She’s so looking forward to it. But Origami disagrees because if they have such free time, they should be training. Till she receives a call from Shido that he is unable to return some book. In the background she hears Touka pestering him to start their trip. So pissed that Origami crushed the can juice with her hand. So did that change her mind? Reine drives the gang but since Shido is paying more attention to Yoshino and the rabbit (because he sits closer to them), Touka got jealous and her stomping not only breaks the floor but the entire road beneath her! Now they have to walk the entire way. The AST girls are ready to head for the hotspring. Yup. Captain is definitely looking forward to it seeing all the bathing equipment and booze she is bringing. Likewise Origami too. Only, she has all those spying and sniping equipment. Suddenly the train they are on crashes. So it is a long journey by foot. Ratatoskr love ‘experts’ detect AST around and think it would be bad if they meet the Spirits. They go into battle mode to prevent AST from reaching the hotspring by blocking all the paths.

Shido and co are surprised to see Kotori at the hotspring. She’s here to watch them? Why not do it from Fraxinus? Ah, she wants to join them, right? Nothing will stop between Captain and her hotspring so she blows one of the walls with her C4. Ratatoskr can’t let them pass and initiates all the traps that include sticky glue, nettings, sleeping gas and food missiles. Just WTF. Captain won’t be intimated and goes on the offensive. I think she is running wild. One of the stray missiles hit Shido’s group and this causes Yoshinon to fly away. Sad Yoshino starts crying and the only way is to find the rabbit again. Looks like it’s a job for Shido. Captain continues to be stressed out that something is trying to stop her from relaxing in the hotspring. She snaps and continues her berserk destruction (including her scary aunty ranting). All the AST girls must obey her in fighting back because if there are any remaining ammos left, she’ll shoot it up their ass! When Shido finds Yoshinon, a large gourd missile slams into him. Luckily, Touka’s barrier protected him. AST is stumped to see Touka but before any big battle can start, Touka disappears with Shido. Yoshino is grateful that Yoshinon is back but its head fell apart into the hotspring. Oh no. Here comes the bad mood again. Yeah, the hotspring is frozen. At the end of the day when Captain is relishing she will finally be able to relax in the hotspring, I think her colleagues are starting to realize how scary she can be. But too bad they won’t get too because due to Yoshino’s freezing, they become frozen in ice. Bummer. However there is some good news. Kannadzuki’s digging has hit upon a natural hotspring. Finally Shido and co can soak themselves in this mini hotspring in the middle of nowhere.

Episode 7
All AST members are down. Origami is the last one left facing off with Second Lieutenant Mana Takamiya. But Origami is not match for a person who has experience killing a Spirit. When they are rewatching the video of Hermit’s rampage, Mana sees Shido and realizes that is her brother. Say what? Mana wants to know Origami’s relationship with him. They are lovers. So she claims. Shido’s class gets another transfer student. Kurumi Tokisaki is a real looker that gets all the boys howling. She admits she is a Spirit and wants somebody to show her around school. Not just anybody. She wants Shido to be the one. Sorry Tonomachi, it’s not you. AST analyses Kurumi and it is confirmed that she is not just a Spirit. She is an evil one as she has killed many people with her own hands in addition to spacequakes. So Kotori wants Shido to win her heart over before AST butts in. But it looks like Kurumi is doing the seducing. Origami and Touka spy on Shido giving Kurumi a tour. Can’t let him flirt with more girls, eh? During the course, because of Kannadzuki’s annoyance, it made Kotori say the wrong option so Shido asks Kurumi to show her panties! Surprisingly she will gladly do so but shy boy stops her. He asks her about being a Spirit but she knows he is playing dumb. She knows about him and admits she fell in love with him at first sight. She wants to spend time with him and this makes her happy. Probably Origami and Touka can’t take more of Kurumi’s flirts and drop out from the closet they are hiding. I don’t know if they’re trying to be funny because they try to give the same reason (lack of iron, that is) to hint Shido to hold their hand (not the butt, silly Touka). Kurumi soon leaves alone and is grateful for the time spent. Shido feels Origami and Touka might have saved him. While Kurumi is walking home, she bumps into several punks. They want to get funny with her and she agrees. They get the wrong idea since she agrees to do it in a more secluded space rather in the open. Little do they know, they were all slaughtered. It’s such a bloody alley. Shortly, Mana confronts her and realizes she is too late to stop her eating mess. She calls Kurumi, Nightmare.

Shido is on his way home when he sees Mana. He doesn’t know her but she hugs him and proclaims him as her nii-sama. Back home, Kotori wants to know the meaning of this. So we learn Shido and Kotori aren’t blood related. The Itsuka family took Shido in when he was young. Shido admits he doesn’t remember her but the feeling is same for Mana. She doesn’t remember her past. So how does she know he is her nii-sama? She has a locket that has their picture. She doesn’t think it is some boy who looks like him either. She is so happy to reunite with him and wants to hug but Kotori won’t allow it. But why kick Shido away? Mana guarantees she is not here to steal him but hits a nerve when she says Kotori is no match for a real sister. Soon it descends into an argument between blood and adopted sister. The Spirits do not understand a single thing they are arguing. Perhaps some sort of food? So what does Shido has to say about this natural versus imitation sister thingy? He wants to meet Mana’s guardians but she can’t. Without giving away too much, she mentions about living in a dorm in her workplace before taking her leave. Next day, Origami is sure Kurumi will never come to school again but to her surprise, she comes in late. Kotori calls Shido to the physics room. He is shown a video. No, not the sequel to the dating sim. It is Mana’s confrontation with Kurumi at the alley. Origami and the other AST members are on standby. Mana kills Kurumi and slices up to pieces! Gross out! Kurumi was confirmed killed. So why has she shown up this morning in school? Big mystery. Origami confronts Kurumi herself. The mention about her being killed, Kurumi knows she was the one with Mana. She summons her ghost hands to hold back Origami. Kurumi claims cleaning her body last night was futile. Her goal is Shido. She knows Origami is in love with him but mocks her feelings aren’t as strong as hers. He is the best man. A wonderful man. Very delicious looking. She wants him. She yearns for him. She wants to make him hers. She wants to be one with him. Yeah, yeah. We get what you’re saying.

Episode 8
Kurumi happily accepts Shido’s request for a date tomorrow at 10.30am. Well, all part of the plan. But Origami wants to know what Shido talked to Kurumi. He won’t say and excuses himself. Origami remembers Kurumi wanted to devour her too but she’ll only do that after Shido. Shido walks home with Touka. Suddenly she locks the door and draws the curtains. She starts seducing him. Shido no choice had to take the aquarium tickets she placed in her cleavage. She is happy that this method to ask him out for a date worked. Because the 3 stooges misinterpreted she was down due to Shido’s negligence and told her this sure effective way to get to him. I guess he has to see her tomorrow at 10am. Shortly, he gets a call from Origami who doesn’t think he should be alone. He has no choice but to meet her tomorrow at 11am. Wow. This guy is fully booked. Kotori and Ratatoskr will gladly support him and monitor his dating schedule. Something tells me they’re going to enjoy seeing this. So the date plan begins with Shido meeting Touka. He is stunned by her cute clothes. While touring the aquarium, it is time to meet Kurumi so Shido has to feign that toilet move. Kotori has her ‘experts’ choose which destination to go for Kurumi’s date. Because it is a tie for option 1 and 2, Kotori opts for the third one: The lingerie shop. Shido is even forced to choose an underwear set for her in which she tries it on. Speechless… His troubles are compounded when the 3 stooges catches him around. Now he has to leave to meet Origami. Toilet excuse again? Since they have time before the movie, Origami and Shido go have light lunch. Origami is serious that she wants him to stay with her. Because Shido is taking too long, Touka starts looking for him. I guess that is cue for Shido to make his move. Nature is calling him…

And so the date rotation between the 3 girls seems pretty hectic. Round and round they go. I wonder if the toilet excuse is getting old. If it’s not bad enough, he has to stay clear of the 3 stooges. Thankfully Yoshino was around to distract them. While Kurumi is waiting at the park, she sees several bullies shooting pellets at a helpless kitten. She wants to join in but would like to change the target. Just then, all the monitors watching Kurumi went blank. Kotori and her team try to get it fix. Elsewhere, the dreaded inevitable happens. Origami and Touka bump into each other and somewhat find out they are dating Shido at this moment. Origami realizes if that is the case and that guy is not with either of them, could it be there is another girl he is dating now? Shido is at the park looking for Kurumi. He stumbles upon the trees filled with blood. It is so gross that he lets loose a sickening scream! I think he really needs to use the toilet to vomit this time. He is forced to witness Kurumi in the midst of shooting holes through the last bully’s body. Shido wanted to escape but he is too weak after seeing the revolting scene. Kurumi uses he ghost hands to hold him down. She is about to enjoy him when suddenly she is flung away like as though she got air punched and air kicked away. It is Mana arriving on scene.

Episode 9
Shido is surprised to see Mana in her battle gear. Mana mercilessly shoots and kills Kurumi. I guess Shido has seen enough blood for today. How can Mana be so calm in killing somebody? That’s not a person to begin with. Kurumi AKA Nightmare is a special Spirit. No matter how many times you kill her, she always comes back and starts killing. It is Mana’s job to hunt her down and kill her. Over and over again. Shido is thrown out of the place. Just when Origami and Touka find him, he is not feeling well and wants to go home. But it seems Touka wants to continue their date. When Shido feels better, he feels the need to stop Kurumi from killing more people. But he doesn’t know how to approach her since she is a different Spirit. Touka says she is not different at all. The Spirits are all the same. She believes if Shido shows her the caring side of the world it may just work out. And that is the only difference between them. Next morning in school, as expected, Kurumi is around. Shido makes his stand. He will save her. He will stop her from killing. He will stop Mana from killing her. Of course Kurumi is not convinced and would like to test how true his statement is. Mana and Kotori confront each other. They seem to know about each other’s identity now. But Kotori knows a little more on her and especially that AST company Mana works for. Apparently Mana herself doesn’t know this bit. When Reine analyzed her saliva, her body had been infused with excessive amount of magical energy and has 10 years to live. They have to cut short their chatter as an intense Spirit wave is detected at school. Everyone has been knocked out under this barrier except for Shido because he possesses the seal of Touka and Yoshino as it works like some sort of divine Spirit protection. Kurumi summons Shido to the rooftop. Origami looks like she is not affected due to her suit but she is stopped by Kurumi. Elsewhere, Touka summons enough courage to call upon part of her battle gear and move. She barely dodges a sniping shot from Kurumi.

Shido confronts Kurumi at the rooftop. She explains this barrier sucks out time of those who tread in her shadow. There is a clock in her left eye and it represents her time. This is her Spirit power but it uses a large amount of her time each time she uses it, thus the need to replenish it via external source (the killings). Of course she views Shido as special and wants to devour him. Before that, she wants him to retract his statement of saving her. There is no way he will give his love to someone this scary. If he does so, she’ll remove the barrier. Shido wants her to remove the barrier and will not give up on her. Kurumi threatens by summoning a spacequake. Shido gets information that Kurumi is more afraid of him so he tells her that she shouldn’t involve others if her goal is to eat him. Then he threatens to kill himself. She isn’t convinced so he jumps from the building. Kurumi saves him and this proves that he is indeed a valuable hostage. Kurumi is forced to stop the spacequake and release the barrier otherwise he will bite his own tongue and die. Then he persuades her to start anew. Give herself a chance to enjoy life. He guarantees he can make it happen and no matter how wrong she is, that is not a reason for him not to save her. Kurumi is taken in by his words and is going to give him a chance when her ghost hand stabs her stomach, killing her. Another Kurumi? Mana arrives on scene to cut off Kurumi’s hand. With Touka and Origami arriving too, you think Kurumi is outnumbered? She summons Zafkiel the giant clock. Her hand is restored back to perfect. In fact, her true power is turning back time. She can also teleport, slow down Mana’s time so she can put bullets into her body. Kurumi materializes more of her selves and they are her from different time axis. It is a reason why Mana can never truly kill her. She has everyone bound by her clones and is going to summon a spacequake to do a biggest massacre. Suddenly the spacequake is knocked away. Kotori discloses that by using a tremor of a similar scale to hit a spacequake, they will cancel out each other. And why is it everybody is so surprised to see Kotori in her goddess form? Nobody thought she was a Spirit, huh? Well that giant flaming axe of hers, Camael convince you?

Episode 10
A power battle between Kurumi and Kotori begins. Kurumi thought she had the upper hand with her clones and thought she had killed Kurumi with a point blank shot to her forehead. But she revives and goes on the offensive. Camael turns into some powerful cannon and it took all Kurumi got to protect herself (her clones were done in). Kotori wants to fight to the death but Kurumi is unable to continue. In that case, Kotori will just kill her. Shido knows this isn’t Ratatoskr’s principle as they’re supposed to save Spirits without them. However his words couldn’t reach her. It’s like she’s a different person hell bent on killing. Shido steps in front of Kurumi to shield her from the blast. Did Kotori’s sanity come back a second too late? Next thing he knows, he is in the infirmary. He is worried about the girls and everybody so Reine had to calm him down by smothering him in her boobs. She tells him unconscious Mana and Origami were retrieved by AST, Kurumi escaped while Touka although injured insisted staying by Shido’s side till she tires out. He is brought to where Kotori is. First thing on the agenda is that he asks if she is a Spirit. She is human but data indicates she is a Spirit. In other words, she is a human with Spirit powers. She is definitely born into the Itsuka family but an incident 5 years ago made her into one. Certain parts of Shido’s memories return. He remembers trying to save Kotori from flames but was blown away. It is probably then some of her Spirit powers transferred into him. The odd part was she cannot remember why or how this happen. Subsequently after that, she was picked up by Ratatoskr and learnt about Spirits. She decided to save them. As for how she suppressed her power, it was Shido who sealed it. Funny. He can’t remember. Oddly too, he has this unexplained ability to seal Spirit’s power that’s why Ratatoskr drafted him. Kotori then punches him in the gut as reminder how frail his life is. Had she not regain her sanity then and move away the cannon, he would have died instantly. Shido learns when Kotori is in her Spirit form, she is not herself. She has the urge to destroy things and has no recollection when she is in that form (maybe this explains why she doesn’t remember her past well too). She is distraught she might have killed people then. So since Shido needs to seal it, I guess we know the usual way just like he did with the other spirits. Date her, make her fall in love with him.

Shido is forced to leave when Kotori is not feeling too well. Happy Touka is glad to find him but he is in no mood to talk. Because Reine told him Kotori can withstand having her Spirit energy for 2 more days before she will turn into a different person and will never revert back. In that time, Shido must go on a date with her as their last resort to save Kotori. Shido visits the hospital for Mana but the staff won’t let him in on a single detail. Origami is there so she talks to him. Mana has been treated in a very highly classified manner. That is all she can say. Origami is not happy that Touka is doing fine and since Shido sounded like he is only here for Mana, she feigns she is too weak and forces him to carry her back to her room. She gets motion sickness on wheelchair? Liar! She takes advantage of his kindness by clinging hard on his body and other questionable stuffs that we don’t get to see. She won’t let him go because she forces him to cut apples and feed her. He is smart enough not to do it mouth to mouth as requested but she sucks his fingers!!! That will even do!!! She’s really enjoying licking it!!! I think this tastes much better than the apple, no? More Origami seduction follows… Just when he is about to leave, Origami wants to know about a new Spirit in flames and kimono she saw before she passed out. Shido lies that he passed out too and doesn’t know a thing. Why is she interested? Because 5 years ago, that Spirit called Efreet set fire to a neighbouring town killing her parents. Oh dear… Sense her murderous intent? She’s serious. She’s been waiting for this day to kill that Spirit with her own hands. She joined AST just for this purpose and now after all these years, she has found that Spirit. It’s a small world after all…

Episode 11
Shido is in a dilemma. He thinks hard on Kotori and Origami’s words and putting the pieces of the puzzle together. Can it be that? Because they don’t remember much of their past, they do not know what the truth is. Reine tells Shido that it is decided the water amusement park will be their place of date tomorrow. But first he must undergo some training. Buying swimsuits with Touka and Yoshino? How is this training? Well, since his eyes wandered off to the 3 stooges who happen to be there trying out, I guess you can say this is some sort of danger they can’t risk by having him look at other girls besides Kotori. Touka seeks explanation about the swimsuit so Origami conveniently explains to her the military way. Military Zapped Ultimate Grind Instrument. Cleverly abbreviated as Mi-Zu-Gi. Origami is here to talk to Touka about the fire Spirit. She will be grateful if she knows anything. Touka won’t tell her anything so Origami had to put up her cute plea. So cute that it’s just creepy. What does Touka know? Red. Strong. Fwoosh. Is that all? WTF. Useless. Now for the more daunting task. Shido must judge which one of them looks better in their swimsuit. The winner gets to date him. How did it descend into this? The competition is fierce but Origami is always a step ahead of Touka. Finally they hear Yoshino having trouble tying her swimsuit string with one hand. We have a winner. You can’t beat such moe, can’t you? Back at the base, because Shido laments if he has some sort of knowledge how he first sealed Kotori. Kannadzuki shows him a confiscated video of the great fire then. Kotori is in the picture but Shido sees something amiss. Kannadzuki doesn’t see anything suspicious but Shido is positive that the blurry thing in front of Kotori was somebody. He doesn’t know but he feels it is definitely a person. Suddenly he passes out.

Luckily Shido is ready for Kotori’s date the next day. She is her usual insulting and sarcastic little sister. But this won’t be a date with just 2 of them. Touka and Yoshino are tagging along too as instructed by Reine. Oh… I’m sure Kotori is ‘looking forward’ to it. So at the water park, it is time for Shido to comment on Kotori’s swimsuit. ‘Experts’, input please. It is obvious to go for the first choice of complimenting but Kannadzuki as the acting officer decides to use the one that compliments her small boobs instead. Lolicon! The ‘experts’ turn on him. After riding down the water slide and stopping for lunch, Shido checks with Reine for the stats. No decline but no improvement either. At this rate, he can’t save her. Kotori leaves the table. Touka and Yoshino wonder if Shido had a fight with her because it seems he loosens up when Kotori leaves. Shido leaves to get some fresh air and seek advice if he is too tense. Then he sees Kotori slumping behind the vending machine with Reine by her side. Reine doesn’t want to administer more drugs into her (it’s already 50 times her normal dosage!). Kotori is confident it won’t kill her as she is a Spirit. Besides, this might be her last chance to be with Shido as herself. Later Shido confronts Reine about this. She reveals Kotori has been like that since she regained her Spirit power. But this is done on her request. Kotori didn’t tell him as she didn’t want him to date her out of pity. Reine hopes he never heard this. When Kotori returns, Shido plans to take her to the indoor amusement park. To prove this is not orders from Ratatoskr, he throws away his ear piece. Don’t worry about Touka and Yoshino. They’re having a blast with some water ride. Meanwhile Captain shows Origami a new mecha suit, White Licorice. Powerful enough to kill a Spirit. But too bad Origami can’t use it due to political and technological reasons. When Captain brings up the matter of that fire footage, Origami wants to see it. She is shocked to see Kotori in the picture. Then it turns to hatred. Right under her nose, eh?

Episode 12
Kotori is not good with rides. But Shido’s cheeky face is relishing to see her reaction. Funny. As a Spirit who zips around in the air at high speed, she is afraid of the roller coaster? As a Ratatoskr commander taking on Spirits, she is afraid of the haunted house? Touka learns from Yoshino that Kotori is a Spirit (the latter was probably eavesdropping). They want to help them out but Yoshino thinks it is best that they stay out of this one. Meanwhile, White Licorice has gone missing in the blink of an eye. Tons of its ammunition too. We all know who to point our fingers to. While taking a break, Kotori gets nervous thinking Shido wants to kiss him. She almost jumped the gun but what he wanted was to ask her a question. Before that could happen, Kotori is blown into smithereens! Look who is here? One mad AST girl. Shido is unaffected as she was protecting him in a barrier. But Kotori can’t die that easy, right? And so while the crowd runs helter-skelter, our girls engage in a powerful battle enough to destroy the amusement park and turn it into some mish-mash. Did she care about the innocent people’s safety first? Apparently all she got on her mind is to kill Efreet. Shido’s scream for them to stop fell on deaf ears. Seriously, are those hot headed girls going to simply listen to him? Touka and Yoshino hear blasting sounds. They know they can’t interfere but eventually their urge to go help is stronger. Obviously Kotori is stronger. So strong that Origami had to turn and run because Kotori is going crazy, losing her mind like a mad killer at each passing moment. But because of her condition and her weakened state, it allows Origami to pound back and cause further wreckage. Origami has captured Kotori and is about to kill her but Shido comes in between them. He persuades hard he doesn’t want her to turn into a different person like Mana. Also, it is Efreet the Spirit of Flames she is gunning for revenge and not Kotori the human. However Origami is damn certain that Kotori = Efreet. Nothing will change her mind. Shido continues to stand his ground.

Thanks to this ‘stalling’, Touka and Yoshino is able to distract Origami to let Shido have enough time to escape with Kotori. It’s Touka’s turn to try and convince Origami. She makes her remember that awful feeling when she almost killed Shido. That same awful feeling when her parents were murdered. Does she intend to make Shido go through that? Shido can’t contact Reine for Kotori’s stats so he is forced to rush and make Kotori reveal her feelings. Does she love him? Yes! And always! Love him more than anyone else in the world. When they kiss, the memories on that fateful day 5 years ago become clearer. But no time to stop and think. They have to continue running with Origami not hot on their heels. Origami sees the Shido’s back being healed after the fragments of the blast injure it. Shido once again tells her that it is Efreet and not Kotori his sister who killed her parents. If she still refuses to believe that, then kill him. Because he has absorbed Efreet’s power. I’m sure Origami would love to but she has taken in heavy damage and passes out. In the aftermath back at Fraxinus, Reine apologizes about her poor judgment. Shido and Kotori shouldn’t have gone on a date to begin with and he should have kissed and sealed her power when he woke up. Just that, Kotori was looking forward very much to this date that she thought it was necessary. She shows Kotori’s stats that were never changed. Her love for him was always at maximum level. Kotori dismisses everything as error. If anybody agrees, they’ll be penalized. Sorry, Shido. Computer error. The tsundere is always right. Although Kotori now remembers some of her memories, she feels the need to store such information outside their heads as they can’t rule out the possibility of their memories being erased. She wonders if Shido meant what he said about loving her. Of course he does. As his sister. Tsundere kick! Origami is retrieved by AST but strapped onto the bed like a dangerous mental patient. Shido thanks Touka for their assistance. Touka wants him to save another Spirit if she appears. But not kiss her. How to complete sealing then? Since Touka wants a kiss, Shido no choice has to oblige and the watching Ratatoskr crew are encouraging them. Sorry to disappoint. But Yoshinon got the kiss anyway.

Dating Woes Dead Ahead
Not really the end for now. I suppose there are lots of things that are not resolved yet so it is no surprise that right at the end of the final episode, the announcement of the second season has been given the green light. When Shido and Kotori emerge victorious over the battle with Origami, it doesn’t show that Origami has actually turned over a new leaf yet. From the way I look at it, she still harbours very deep hatred and revenge for Efreet. It is going to take a lot more effort to make her open her eyes. Until the real identity of Efreet has been revealed, Origami will eye Kotori as her prey and I’m sure this would put a damper to the harem factor that we partly look forward with. There is also unfinished business with Kurumi since the last fight didn’t end with any clear victor. I bet that she will be another handful like Origami before she comes over to the good side. Mana has been out of the picture after Kurumi’s battle but I doubt that her role will end just there. Of course with Kotori now having fragments of her memory returned, it still remains in question about her transformation into a Spirit and the killings she did when she went berserk. Based on the few clips seen for next season’s production, it looks like there will be more Spirits and crazier outrageous battle. It is going to get tougher from this point. I guess they’re trying to say dating and fighting are the same because you put your very life on the line! Haha! Even if this season feels incomplete and somewhat a chaotic mess, it is still a fun watch. The harem part, that is.

So just like about everything else, there is something mysterious within Shido that he himself doesn’t know. Something that can seal the power of Spirits. It doesn’t help since he can’t remember much either. I suppose when he first sealed Kotori, I thought it was the same like how he sealed all the Spirits: Sealed with a kiss. Isn’t that how it is supposed to be done? Unless there is a more ‘passionate’ way to seal it because so far all we’ve seen are kisses on the lips and the Spirit will become docile. But I don’t think any kiss will do because if it was, Shido wouldn’t have to go through all that dating schedule and stealing kisses would just do. Besides, that would be plain rude to force kiss a girl even if she is a Spirit. Despite not being humans, they have feelings too and as seen as proof, Touka and Yoshino did quite nicely to fit into society albeit with a little quirks here and there. So I conclude that in order to seal a Spirit there needs to be several conditions to fulfil before it turns into another spacequake disaster. 1) You need to get them into the mood and raise their stats (playing dating sims might help); 2) When everything and the mood are right, go in for the kill (with a kiss, that is); 3) You must be Shido. I guess the last qualification disqualifies the rest of us, eh? Yeah. Only Shido can do it. Somehow. And the way I see this typical nice guy who cares for everyone around him, I think he wants to and will be saving ALL of the Spirits. Good or bad, he still wants to give them a chance. That isn’t entirely a bad thing although the problem of harem woes might creep up if every Spirit he seals ends up falling in love with him. What a way to gun for a harem route. I wonder if he had such experience while he was playing his dating sims.

I have to admit that the harem part whereby the girls are somewhat fighting over the attention of Shido is what I looked forward and enjoyed most (because I’m a ‘loser’ too). It was fun seeing the main rivalry between Touka and Origami although the cool taciturn latter always seem to have the upper hand on the naive former. It’s like their personalities are poles apart (and poor Shido is caught in between). Ever since Touka’s power has been sealed, so tame she is that you might actually forget that she was a menacing Spirit that once caused the spacequake in the vicinity. She becomes a gullible and simple girl and is eager to do lots of stuffs that have to do with dates. On the other hand, Origami doesn’t seem to show her emotions and if she did, it makes her feel creepy. Otherwise, extreme. Not used to it. Especially the part whereby she surprised us by licking Shido’s finger in her hospital room. Didn’t see that one coming. If this is just part of her true nature and feelings for Shido, I think there will be something a lot darker if surfaced. When she falls into despair, you can really see the wretched look on her face. And when she is angry and hell bent on revenge, nothing will change her mind. It’s like she’s willing to sacrifice the ones she loves just for the mission she lives out for.

As for now, so far Touka and Origami looks like the front runners if ever Shido realizes he is in a harem. I thought Yoshino would add to the mix but ever since she toned down, she’s just hanging around. I thought at least when Shido saved her, she would realize Shido would be her new hero as he mentioned and not rely on Yoshinon too much. But I guess she still needs her puppet rabbit and the show needs some sort of animal mascot. Besides, if Yoshino does join the harem rat race, it would somehow look bad on Shido and make it look as though he is a lolicon. He already doesn’t have a good reputation among the 3 stooges, this one will make it worse. Speaking of them, I’m not sure if it’s a coincidence but I seem to notice that each time they are around, Shido is there as well. I won’t go so far to say that they are stalking him or have feelings for him (not that I can tell) but it feels more than just coincidence. Especially one of them whose vocabulary and lines are only limited to “Majihiku” (“Gross”). Has she no other word to say? Everything Shido does is gross. It’s like the programmers forgot to install more lexicon into her brain.

Back to the harem factor, I also thought Mana’s appearance halfway through the series would tip the scales of the harem balance. Her brotherly love seems genuine and might steal Shido’s heart if Touka and Origami are not careful. But then… She got taken out so I don’t think she’ll be back in action for a while. As for Kotori, they do love each other but officially it seems only as siblings. One is a tsundere and the other a big brother. If they can’t see past that relationship, then I figure it is a good thing for Touka and Origami to lead a 2-horse race for Shido. I won’t discount Kurumi but since she has not turned over a new leaf yet, chances are pretty slim as far as this harem matter is concerned. Otherwise, she might be the one taking the lead and increasing it because of her boldness that would leave everyone else pretty much speechless and hesitating. So all the main girls here (except Mana) got their moment in dating Shido. I figure he should be an expert in this area now. A promising romantic. A smooth talker. At least his words got through to the heart of the girls he dated. Yes, even Kurumi. Only if her other clones didn’t kill her off and null his efforts. Can Shido do it all over again for her? All of her clones? That will take forever, right?

The other side characters are amusing. Reine doesn’t look like she has much sleep and the way she talks so drowsy feels like as though she could just fall asleep halfway in the midst of the conversation. Thankfully she didn’t. Was she up all night playing or programming dating sims? That’s just my speculation. Kannadzuki at first looked like he is going to be quite a reliable second in command till his true colours of being a lolicon is revealed. Then he turns out to be more of a comical role than anything else. He never learns about his lolicon habit and always gets punished by Kotori. But at least it shows that he has unwavering loyalty to his preference. Okay, that may sound like a bad thing. Then there are those Ratatoskr love ‘experts’. I still find it funny that they are dubbed experts in this area but I guess you can only gain valuable experience from bitter events and encounters. What doesn’t kill you make you stronger. At least they’ve shown to be much better characters than Kannadzuki. But still… Are they the best people to make choices for dating? I can bet Shido’s romance life is screwed if he listens to every choice they pick. So it’s best to go with his guts, no? Tonomachi going steady with his 2D girlfriend indicates that he might have given up on 3D women but when Kurumi came into the picture it looked like there was hope until… Reality is such a disappointment, huh? No wonder guys like him seek solace in 2D girls. They’ll never reject you! We all know well the one word we can’t say to Tamae. At least not until she finds Mr Right and gets hitched.

Watching this kind of show, one (like yours truly) would have expected some fanservice scenes. I suppose saying that it was done well would give an inaccurate picture of what I mean. Taking the overall flow of the story, characters and the action involved, everything was pretty much balanced out with its lively pacing so it doesn’t feel overwhelming in one area from the other. In short, the fanservice is sufficient and provides timely eye candy as to how some of the funny moments (like Touka’s naivety) provide comic relief moments and as to how the mecha action satiate your , uhm, mecha action palate. So, no mind blowing fanservice just some typical ones like the hotspring episode (but you rarely see our main girls dipping inside), the swimsuit purchasing episode and perhaps the lingerie scene by Kurumi should be the most stimulating one. If you are into her, that is. But no beach episode, though. Well, the water amusement park was close enough.

The battle scenes are quite okay but if you are dealing with powerful beings that can literally shake the face of this planet, you would be expecting some power battles. It feels like they are of a grand scale since you’ve got AST with their mecha firepower while the Spirits each with their own abilities that feels infused with magic. The weapons that they materialize are huge and you don’t expect a sword 5 times your size to do minimal damage, right? The size must be of proportionate if not bigger in its damage for ooh-ahh-wowee effect. So you’ll see some swinging and blasting action while the girls duke it out and somehow the city gets partly decimated. It makes no difference than having a spacequake in the first place, eh? At least it won’t be as bad as a spacequake because when that happens, everything will just become a huge barren crater. Eventually it is the power of words that move the heart and calm everything down. Yeah. The tongue is mightier than the sword in this case. A very cost effective weapon. No R&D costs. Just sincerity from the heart. Therefore we can learn from this lesson that we can resolve things better and more peacefully through dialogue instead of destructive action that gets us nowhere. The designs of the Spirits clothes aren’t too bad like Touka’s battle fantasy type and Kurumi’s gothic style. Somehow AST’s battle gears remind me of those Busou Shinki. It boggles my mind that when they wear such gear, they are close to naked. Shouldn’t they be armed up to their eyeballs? I know. Little fanservice. But I figure that those mech equipment they carry must be heavy so they’ve got to be ‘lighter’ in other departments. Maybe.

Marina Inoue as Touka, when she was hostile, she had that dominating sounding voice like Yozora from Boku Wa Tomodachi Ga Sukunai or Laura from Infinite Stratos. Then when she turned friendly, she sounded more like Kana of Minami-ke. Ayana Taketatsu seems fitting as Kotori because she also voiced similar characters like Kirino in OreImo, Rinka in Kono Naka Ni Hitori Imouto Ga Iru and Eclair in Dog Days. It took me a while to recognize Asami Sanada as Kurumi. I felt a certain familiarity in that voice before I realized it’s that voice of Kanako from Maria+Holic and Sawako from K-ON! Here, she sounds a little creepier which fits Kurumi’s nature as a dangerous Spirit. Other casts include Iori Nomizu as Yoshino (Haruna in Kore Wa Zombie Desu Ka, Funko in Upotte), Misuzu Togashi as Origami (Minatsu in Seitokai No Ichizon, Ichiroku in Upotte), Aya Endo as Reine (Matsu in Sekirei, Mire in Upotte), Misato as Mana (Eru in Upotte), Kaori Sadohara as Tamae (Shigu in Upotte) (What’s with the Upotte alumnae? I promise, no more Upotte casts), Nobunaga Shimazaki as Shido (Kaito in Ano Natsu De Matteru), Takehito Koyasu as Kannadzuki (Takasugi in Gintama) and Anri Katsu as Tonomachi (Tsuchimikado in To Aru Majutsu No Index).

The opening theme by Sweet Arms is the same name of this series and sounds like generic rock. As most of the ending themes are sung by Iori Nomizu, I find the main ending theme to be quite funny. Save The World has lyrics like “Before the world ends, kiss or kill me” and “Save the world with something that isn’t exactly love”. It is even funnier the way the tune of this song plays out. Ironically despite the song sung by Yoshino’s seiyuu, the entire ending credits animation is on Touka. Well, maybe Iori Nomizu had a funny voice. Hearing her sing this remind me of how she sang as Haruna in Kore Wa Zombie Desu Ka. Funny and horrible. Oops… The other ending theme, this time entitled Save My Heart (lasting for only 2 episodes) which sounds like any other anime pop (again, the ending credits only feature Touka who is running somewhere – will she ever reach Shido’s heart?). Finally, Strawberry Rain flows to a slower beat and we have Yoshino in the picture this time. However this song is only featured for one episode. The only ending song not sung by Iori Nomizu is Hatsukoi Winding Road by Kayoko Tsumita, Risako Murai and Midori Tsukimiya, the special ending piece for the first episode. Actually it is not so much of a song. It’s just those dating sim girls talking (basically about this anime’s premise and Shido’s ‘job’) throughout the duration while the music is being played in the background.

So the next time when aliens from outer space stop by our planet and are bent on total invasion or world destruction, maybe we should take a cue from this anime to date them, make them fall in love with us, make them feel how beautiful this world is. Well, aside from civil war and pollution, that is. Nobody is that perfect. Who knows? We might just become good friends with highly advanced aliens. That is rather fine and I would also love to be part of it. But provided if they look like pretty 2D anime girls. Please… You don’t expect me to date those grey aliens, don’t you? Those types can be sent to Area 51 for classified experiments that I couldn’t care less. Remember, when the world is about to end at the hands of aliens, don’t show hostility, but the power of love! But I wonder why we can’t have a peaceful resolve if we date more than one girl… That sounds like a guaranteed formula for war. I guess some things aren’t meant to be shared equally or to be even shared that way.

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