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The World God Only Knows 124

December 12, 2010 Leave a comment
[scanlation by Red Hawk Scanlations]

For all that fuss that was raised over the renovation of the library towards the climax of Shiori’s arc, it doesn’t seem to have changed too much. Her desk is a bit different, no longer cluttered with a giant stack of books.

Shiori’s still stuttering out some words, but she seems on the whole to be more stable and talkative than she was in the past. The way she belts out the location of every Osamu Kawabata (actual author, by the way) is a great reminder of her detail-oriented personality. Understandably, the male student she’s helping only wants the easiest to find books, the ones at their current location. What follows is a great scene, as Keima was hiding behind the bookshelf in question.

We meet again

Immediately after seeing Keima, Shiori reverts back to silent “…” mode. That reaction might just be a combination of her inherent shyness with her being a bit flustered, but it seems to be a bit more than that, given her subsequent efforts to specifically avoid Keima while helping other patrons. More importantly, it’s no coincidence that a magazine about Kanon is next to her desk. She’s definitely in the gray area at least.

Avoidance in no uncertain terms

Hmm, that’s a surprise. I didn’t expect Yui to show up here at all, and certainly not to pull what she pulled. Introducing herself to Keima makes it almost certain she doesn’t remember, but her getting him down on the couch makes it just as certain that she does. In the proud tradition of the Yui arc, Keima’s the one being seduced this time. Shiori watching makes it very clear that this is a pivotal moment for her as well.

Final Flash: Very cute first half, very dynamic second half. This series is splendidly playing its characters off one another.

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The World God Only Knows 123

[scanlation by Red Hawk Scanlations]

Chihiro seems to be responding less favorably to Keima’s conquest plan than Ayumi did. At the very least, she’s putting in a fair bit of effort to shrug it off, to increasingly less polite degrees. Indeed, Keima appears to have done less well with her than with Ayumi, but he still seems to think he did well enough.

The Haqua/Keima partnership continues to be fraught with physical abuse. Haqua isn’t missing any chances to be violently tsundere. She really pulls no punches (or footstomps, in this case).

Whether or not the “corrected-misunderstanding” kiss is in fact the best way to finish off a dating-sim, a point which could be debated to no end, it is probably the best that could be made of the current scenario. Keima certainly seems to think it is; his impassioned speech-making on the subject is fun as usual, and opens the way for a fantastic bit of straight-manning by Haqua. Her snarky reactions to Keima’s lecture are an excellent example of a type of entertainment we miss out on with Elsee being Keima’s only partner. I really hope Haqua sticks around after this arc is over.

Buzzkilling for fun and profit

Now that Keima’s dealt with the two girls known to be in the gray area, he moves on to the real challenging ones, starting with Tsukiyo. For all the confidence he had with Ayumi and Chihiro, he’s immediately thrown off balance by Tsukiyo’s appearance and trademark distant personality, hesitating to start saying his lines. Seaking of good deadpan moments, Tsukiyo’s immediate response to said lines takes the cake.

Of course, Keima’s not immediately giving up on Tsukiyo. Instead, he follows her out to the roof, eventually cuing in on the fact that she’s putting the carpet back out again. That could be just another piece of evidence that she is one of those who forgot, but kudos to our hero for noticing.

Ayumi’s arrival on the rooptop triggers an amusing sequence of events. In his desperation to not turn his 4 love triangle conquest plan into a dodecagon plan, he ducks behind the couch and somehow manages to still peg Tsukiyo as in the gray area, before pulling off an ingenious escape from Ayumi… all while hiding under a blanket.

This guy regularly outdoes Solid Snake

Next up on the gauntlet of girls Keima has been running: Shiori, the library assistant. It really has been a while since we’ve seen her. I wonder if she’s learned to talk normally in the interim.

Final Flash: Happy to know that Shiori’s up next, but also sad that, with Elsee being absent, her scene will involve no fire trucks.

Beamcast – November 22

November 22, 2010 1 comment

[download link – 184min, 77mb]

In this week’s huge double-show:

News
SWOT canceled
Fake Hunter x Hunter return information
37 manga publishers to launch North American manga portal
New Shueisha magazine: Saikyou Jump
Air Gear vol. 31 bundled with anime DVD
One Piece vol. 60 sells over 2 million in 4 days
Negima‘s Akamatsu plans free site for out-of-print manga
Dragon Ball SD spinoff manga
One Piece, Toriko 3D film trailers streamed; themes by Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra

Licensing announcements
VIZ: Tenjou Tenge (unedited, 2-in-1 omnibus)
Tokyopop: The Sacred Blacksmith

Non-shonen news
Starz making live-action adaptation of Noir
“Nonexistent youth” bill to be resubmitted
4Kids reports net loss of $9.8 million in 3Q 2010
Zac Efron not starring in Akira
Satoshi Kon’s last film resumes production

Discussion / Weekly Poll
Last week’s results:

Which of these partially-scanlated series would you most like to see caught up?
1. Cage of Eden / GTO: Shonan 14 Days / Sket Dance (19%) (tie)
4. Yankee-kun to Megane-chan (18%)
5. Kuroko no Basket (13%)
6. Onidere (7%)
7. Hajimete no Aku (4%)

This week:
Which of these sidekick characters is your favorite?
Al (Fullmetal Alchemist), Don Patch (Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo), Furuichi (Beelzebub), Komatsu (Toriko), Koutarou (Mahou Sensei Negima!), Krillin (Dragon Ball), Shinpachi (Gintama), Zenkichi (Medaka Box)

This Week in Manga
0:17:14 – Soul Eater 80
0:22:19 – Donten Prism Solar Car 3
0:25:19 – Kure-nai 35-36
0:29:27 – One Piece 604
0:37:40 – Naruto 516-517
0:46:59 – Bleach 426-427
0:52:09 – Bakuman 109-110
0:58:19 – Beelzebub 84-86
1:06:29 – Fairy Tail 211-212
1:10:55 – Hayate no Gotoku! 296-297
1:16:50 – Kekkaishi 328
1:21:15 – History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 406-407
1:31:42 – AR∀GO 43-45
1:38:17 – Toriko 117-118
1:43:24 – Gamaran 70-71
1:46:38 – The World God Only Knows 121-122
1:55:52 – Defense Devil 72-73
1:57:59 – Mahou Sensei Negima! 308-309
2:05:01 – Nurarihyon no Mago 130-132
2:16:03 – Zettai Karen Children 237-238
2:24:15 – GE ~ Good Ending 59
2:27:59 – Kimi no Iru Machi 112-113
2:34:06 – Enigma 9-10
2:42:07 – SWOT 16-17
2:47:07 – Moon Walker LTD.
2:51:36 – Kintoki
2:56:20 – Gate 7 – 1 (new series!)
2:58:04 – Air Gear 294-295
2:59:26 – Code:Breaker 111
3:00:39 – Katekyo Hitman Reborn! 314-315

Chapters of the Week

Final Flash

Comments / questions / additions? Email the show.
Want to share with friends? How kind. Have a shortlink: http://wp.me/pJOZe-WH

Credit: AnimeNewsNetwork

The World God Only Knows 122

November 21, 2010 Leave a comment
[scanlation by Red Hawk Scanlations]

Excellent chemistry between Haqua and Keima continues to entertain, especially after that shower scene last chapter. Keima has to be one of the most single-minded harem protagonists of all time (TWGOK soon will be one if it isn’t already). He’s seriously so centered on the goddesses that he continues to miss the most obvious hints of tsundere coming from Haqua. I’m not complaining; it’s kind of hilarious.

Excellent use of bold text

Make no mistake about it, Keima’s focus right now is the goddesses, and he’s definitely done a good job of thinking ahead. Yes, they need the goddesses drawn out quickly, but the Vintage agent is still around, and bringing out a powerless goddess would just invite more stabbings.

Starting with Ayumi, the mass conquest plan begins. The apple on the desk is a pretty classy touch, and the rooftop confession scene is an extremely enjoyable one, all the way to the ending high-kick by Ayumi. For all the extra plot elements behind Keima’s actions now, Wakaki Tamiki never loses his touch in making romance cute. It’s also fun to see the school tabloids have not been idle.

Your source for all Idol x Geek related gossip

Keima’s plan is to power up the goddesses through copious doses of love, with the end objective of stealing first base. This plan is totally appropriate for this series. Frankly, it’s just a great excuse to see more quick romance.

A similar confession scene with Chihiro brings about a fantastic punchline: Keima not only has a script for each confession he’s going to do, but it’s the same script (albeit with a decision tree built in) for each one. That is so very like this manga. I’m loving this arc already, and we’ve still got a couple more interesting characters to go through. This series has been showing us nothing but its very best of late.

It always pays to plan ahead

Final Flash: Hilarious, fast-paced, and fun. There’s still no evidence as yet as to what part of Keima’s new plan is “demonic.”

The World God Only Knows 121

November 11, 2010 Leave a comment
[scanlation by Red Hawk Scanlations]

I love the job Haqua is doing filling in for Elsie. Her disguise is flawless, except for the fact that she gets questions right in math class.

Specially mentioning Akari now is a bit odd. It is true that Keima still doesn’t know her true identity, but she does feel a little out of place when talking about the other conquests. While her arc was an interesting one to read, it seems more out of place in hindsight.

Akari’s also eliminated from consideration by virtue of the now-defined borderline: only girls Keima could plausibly encounter in a regular school day could have goddesses. This category includes Chihiro and Ayumi, as well as Shiori (the library girl), Tsukiyo (the doll girl), and Yui (the body-swap rich girl). Chihiro and Ayumi are fairly obvious at this point, but as for which of the other three are going to be in there, I can’t be sure; all of them feel equally important at this juncture.

The montage of girls who have been systematically been eliminated from the plot disappointingly includes some very interesting ones, particularly Sumire and Nanaka. At least they earned a mention.

Seriously, the shop could have been a sweet hangout spot

Of course, knowing where the goddesses are is exactly half the problem. The key point of this search is that they have to be dragged out from hiding. I expect this necessity of the arc to shift Keima’s focus from analysis to action.

Haqua’s sleeping over? Excellent. The evolving chemistry between her and Keima as partners is becoming increasingly fun to watch as she gets more and more dragged along by him.

The mention of Kanon is being used a lot to prompt serious mood swings. I do get that Keima regrets what happened, but there’s a limit to how much that point needs to be hammered home. We could do with a little less of that at this point.

Haqua’s shower was a fairly obvious setup for what happened next: an oblivious Keima walking in on her. While this situation is as old as it comes, the author still gets props for avoiding the pitfalls Kimi no Iru Machi has encountered of late by not stuffing the shower scene with full frontal. He gets even more props, however, for this:

A sound effect to define the decade

Haqua provides a typical Tsundere reaction, prompting a peculiar statement from Keima. Now he’s going to be a demon? Does that mean he’s going to start acting like a Black Rainbow protagonist? The impact of this statement is only magnified by the fact that he delivers it buck naked. Gotta love this guy.

Final Flash: Serious development at the end aside, this chapter got good results out of deepening the chemistry between Keima and Haqua.

Beamcast – November 8

November 8, 2010 1 comment

[download link – 140min, 60mb]

In this week’s show:

News

Viz sells downloadable manga via iPad app
Viz announces online Shonen Jump supplement
Viz confirms Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s, Psyren licenses
Leiji Matsumoto, Shigeru Mizuki earn government honors

New releases

[anime]
Tsubasa, RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE – Season 2 Viridian Collection (DVD) $49.98

[manga]
Inuyasha (vol. 54) $9.99
Inuyasha – VIZBIG (vol. 5) $17.99
Maoh: Juvenile Remix (vol. 3) $9.99

Discussion / Weekly Poll
Last week’s results:

Which sport do you prefer seeing depicted in anime/manga?
1. Basketball (29%)
2. Boxing (24%)
3. Football / soccer (20%)
4. Baseball (16%)
5. Tennis (11%)

This week:
Which of these partially-scanlated series would you most like to see caught up?
(Cage of Eden, GTO: Shonan 14 Days, Hajimete no Aku, Kuroko no Basket, Onidere, Sket Dance, Yankee-kun to Megane-chan)

The Great Shonen Tier List
Characters added:

Perona (One Piece)
Kaguya Kimimaro (Naruto)
Lambo (Katekyo Hitman Reborn!)
Sakuragi Hanamichi (Slam Dunk)
Nagase Kaede (Mahou Sensei Negima!)
Jonathan Joestar (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure)

This Week in Manga
0:25:38 – Sankarea 11
0:28:33 – Bleach 425
0:38:55 – One Piece 603
0:50:15 – Naruto 515
1:02:29 – Bakuman 108
1:06:30 – Beelzebub 83
1:12:58 – Fairy Tail 210
1:16:37 – Hayate no Gotoku! 295
1:20:40 – History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 405
1:26:41 – AR∀GO 42
1:33:45 – The World God Only Knows 120
1:40:12 – Defense Devil 71
1:43:22 – Psyren 141-142
1:49:07 – Nurarihyon no Mago 129
1:53:37 – GE ~ Good Ending 57-58
1:57:56 – Kimi no Iru Machi 111
2:00:34 – SWOT 15
2:06:44 – Enigma 8
2:14:00 – Code:Breaker 110
2:16:04 – D.Gray-man 200
2:17:47 – Katekyo Hitman Reborn! 313

Chapters of the Week

Final Flash

Comments / questions / additions? Email the show.
Want to share with friends? How kind. Have a shortlink: http://wp.me/pJOZe-Uj

Credit: AnimeNewsNetwork

The World God Only Knows 120

[scanlation by Red Hawk Scanlations]

The search for the goddesses continues, taking us all the way to a neighboring university town.

I never get tired of being reminded about just how awesome Keima has managed to be. 16 conquests is quite an achievement, though it does make the task at hand somewhat more difficult.

It's not him, it's that sex pistol of a PFP

Meeting up with the wrestling-obsessed teacher again brings back some fond memories of earlier, less-serious arcs. It’s a fun set of memories, and seeing Haqua forced into the role of fake girlfriend is a nice bonus dose of cute.

Keima’s mention of the boundary line and subsequent interaction with Jun does seem to disqualify most of the girls we haven’t seen since their conquest. It is somewhat intuitive that the ones we’ve seen nothing of are going to continue to be less relevant, as they’d be much harder to integrate into the main plot. Still, it’s too bad we won’t get to see the ramen shop girl again.

Another check with Minami, the underclassman in swimming club, confirms Keima’s theory that only girls close to him are possible goddess-holders. Also worth mentioning: Keima is acting like more of a bona fide playboy in this scene, matching his current public image. His confidence with normal girls seems to have increased significantly since he started doing conquests.

I would pour hot coffee on this face

Keima’s attitude on the rooftop is a jolting moment of character introspection. He still has the conflicting emotions over getting Kanon involved in things hanging over his head; add to that mix the realization that the conquests he put so much effort into were so easily erased, and it makes for one terrific effort by Wakaki Tamiki to put a dent in his confidence.

Final Flash: Nice to see girls from prior arcs, but I will miss the girls who were not (and will probably not be) shown.