Haruhi Episode 02 Review
Written in non-linear order.
Why I watched it:
Episode 01 was one of the best shitty movies I've ever seen, with most of what the anime was about being implied through great acting, so why the fuck not, let's watch episode 02.
How it works:
Everyman Kyon gets to know lunatic Haruhi, learns about her legendary status as somebody who pisses of a lot of people, as well as joining every club in the school and quitting immediately after. Kyon drones on about the progress of humanity, a symbol for his down-to-earth attitude in comparison to Haruhi's space-bound one, and so she decides to form a club that nobody knows what will do because nobody understands what Haruhi wants.
They abduct two anime cliches, Yuki the stoic and third member by virtue of them taking her room, and Mikuru the bumbling cute girl whose breasts Haruhi immediately gropes because they're bigger than hers. Kyon declined the offer to. The moral is it's okay to sexually assault members of the same gender, and women are supposed to forgive that fact.
What I felt:
A good first episode is no certainty that a show will remain good - much like Rick and Morty, which stopped focusing on absurd sci-fi adventures and starting focusing on being discount South Park with a main character who turned from a man with few convictions but stuck to them, to a man who ended up being a complete twat. A good second episode is still no sign - the second episode of Rick and Morty was one of the shows best.
This one was good, though, and by good, I mean it did not have any faults. It did not excel, and it did not suck. A middle-of-the-ground episode that was interesting without causing you to grow as a person. Was it the necessary introduction before we learn about the true depth of the show? Based on the Wikipedia episode descriptions, yes with a bunch of s's at the end. Visual aid: yessssssssss...
You can tell this is a show that needs a lot of time to tell its stories, which is true for most slice-of-life shows. Twenty-two minutes is no time at all when you have the entire fucking school year to fill up, so the little we learned about each character besides their base personalities is of little satisfaction, and the story took its first baby step towards actually going somewhere. It's the second chapter of a novel - you need a lot of chapters to make a story.
I was considering only reviewing the spectacular or otherwise special episodes, but to take any particular episode out of context and say "watch this" while ignoring the rest of the show seems to me as disingenuous. While it's okay with some mediums like video games and albums, you can't randomly remove parts of a story and still expect it to make sense, or have the same amount of impact if you would otherwise. For a show that doesn't have overarching narratives, sure, chop it up. This one isn't that, so I'm taking it whole.
I find it astounding how some people would rather have this be the first episode of the series instead of the shitty film episode. The shitty film introduced us to our characters without expecting us to care about them. It showed us what the animators were capable of, the creativity we should expect, and topics of intrigue that would cause us to want to watch the show instead of just filling a story. It had a lot of foreshadowing for the events to come, and is an especially good introduction for those familiar with the series but never got around to watching the series.
If episode 02 was episode 01 and it was on television (note: I hate the television, so this wouldn't apply to me), I probably wouldn't watch the rest of the series, because of its adequacy. It has some laughs and some topics of interest without funding me with any "holy shit" moments, which I can't say about many shows because they all had pretty good first episodes (except for Lucky Star - Kyoto Animation must have a bad streak on that front).
So I guess I can sum up this review by saying "it could have been worse".
What I learned:
Chronology only matters when the very first event of your series is interesting enough to warrant it. This is a double-edged sword; don't have a cool scene happen and then cut to a boring one immediately after. We call that a cop-out, and it's shitty writing.
The quality of media decreases the more you learn about it. For instance, the characterisation of the two main characters are fine, though you can tell the set-up of "straight man to crazy woman" has been used before - in "I Love Lucy" in all things.
You have to have a lot of faith in a series that has two out of four of its members be anime cliches and still recommend it despite that opinion. There must be some symbolism here. I'll probably come to some conclusions, you know, in the three hours of my life I'll spend watching the series.
Never convert video that has subtitles in it, or you'll lose the subtitles and you'll be stuck in ironman mode.
I'm forever good, being Froghand.
Today's page was updated on August 19, 2016!
I was pissed when I had to watch Persepolis in ironman.