I hope that everyone is having a good a weekend, and making sure that everything is in place for the holidays that that are about to come.
Things have been going been going fairly well here, as I can still do the things that I enjoy.
This month has been a little weak in its activity, due to a few things, such as not too many titles to bother with and getting gifts, but I have been able to keep up with a show that started airing in October, and the second quarter of the series is finally ending.
Today, I will be reviewing another episode from that series, which is called The Ancient Magus Bride.
As I have given a series synopsis in an earlier post, I will not go over it again.
Before Chise realizes it, her wand is finished being carved and it is time to put the finishing touches on her brand-new wand, before she can finally head home.
While the second quarter of the series was not always quite good, there is always a chance that things could end on a good.
And after watching this episode, I found it to be terrible.
Fortunately, there was one thing that I did like about this episode, so I do not need to jump to jump right into what I hated.
That one thing that I liked was how Chise was told to have pride in herself.
Now, some people, mainly those with religious backgrounds or are heavily religious, might be kind of surprised that somebody would think that pride is a good thing, but everything that is viewed as bad is not really as black as it seems.
When many people think of pride, they think of people that are full of themselves and are better than everyone else, which I notice some members of the church I belong to seem to have, but have not realized it, and while that does not fall too far off the mark of a form of pride, it would be more accurate to refer to it as arrogance or vainglory, the latter of which used to be considered something different from pride before the two were merged into what we now call the seven deadly sins.
However, when I run a search for pride in Merriam-Webster's online thesaurus, which can be found at the Merriam-Webster website, I came across this page, which states that one definition of pride is “a reasonable or justifiable sense of one's self worth or importance,” and goes on to list some synonyms and related words, such as self-respect, confidence, and self-worth, in addition to the synonyms usually associated with the negative side of pride.
Upon seeing this, it kind of surprises me that people think that we can have confidence without pride, when the two words are so frequently used to try and instill confidence.
In the case of this series, Chise did not seem to value herself too much because her mother told her that she wish that she had never given birth to her and Chise's other relatives did not want her either, which made it even easier for her to just let go of her life, instead of striving to find a way to become truly happy.
For a person to be able to live, they need to have some pride, and this episode really reminded me of that in one particular scene.
After Chise finished carving her wand, she is transported to a realm that divides the living and the dead and is greeted by Nevin, whom she last saw back in episode 3, and Chise starts talking about how she became greedy and wishing that she could have stayed distant.
A few moments later, Nevin starts talking and eventually he says, “To value oneself, as though one were disposable, is to say that those of us they've saved are just as worthless,” and then tells Chise that he wants Chise to be proud of herself.
This moment in the episode really resonated with me, because it reminds me of the people that have been grateful for my presence in their life because I have helped them in very small ways that could not be accomplished via money, though I am not so stingy that that I would not feel like paying for a friend that I was going bowling with, or somehow told them something that ultimately helped them, and it revealed what was missing in Chise all this time.
If Chise did not learn the importance of pride, she would not be able to gain any sort of confidence and attain true independence, because she would have nothing but self-doubt and end up hating herself just as much as a person who constantly deals with family accusing of them of being selfish or told week after week by well-intentioned church leaders that they are not good enough, and actually turn into a character is boring, rather than interesting.
Thankfully, Wit Studio realized this and made sure that she learned this lesson now, rather than when it was too late.
If they had not included this moment in the episode, I would have hated much more than I do, and I would have definitely ended my coverage of the anime here, seeing as it has not really been able to keep me invested all the way through the first half, and that would have been a little sad, since I would not have something of my own that I could use to figure out how much of the original work this adaptation will cover.
Sadly, that was the only thing that I really liked about this episode, so I have got to leave things on a somewhat empty note here.
While there was only one thing that was really good, it revealed what Chise was missing that would help keep grounded and reminded me of why it was so important that we must have pride, and helps to make it somewhat decent.
Although there was one thing that I liked, there are some issues.
However, aside from things that are too minor to talk about or affect the series as a whole more than the episode, there was only one thing that really bothered me.
This episode felt like it was completely unnecessary.
If had to why, it is because nothing really happens in this episode.
Now, some you of guys might screaming at your screens, thinking that I had forgotten that Chise finished making wand, was told to have confidence in herself, and was finally reunited, but each of those things was not something that was so was so groundbreaking that they needed almost an entire dedicated to just that.
In the fourth volume of the manga, after chapter 17's conclusion, which was exact same place where the previous episode concluded, most of the events of this episode start to happen and it concludes with Chise finally reuniting with Ainsworth.
Yes, it was all its own chapter in Kore Yamazaki's original, but it felt complete and covered what was, whereas in this episode it felt like my time wasted and it did not even take up the entire duration of the episode, since with get to see some events from chapter 19 at the very, before they actually make something of their own to signify the end of the first half of the series.
Honestly, it would have been a whole lot better if the staff Wit Studio had taken the first 19 or so minutes on this episode and tacked it to the previous episode, I would have been happy to see that these two reunited and would look forward to the next adventures together.
Unfortunately, they did not do that, and instead decided to end the episode with something that felt like the beginning of a new chapter for the series, which itself should have been in an episode its own.
Really, guys? This is no way to end the first half of a series, yet they did it anyway, which takes away my desire to see any more episodes of this adaptation.
The staff at Wit Studio that were working on this adaptation seemed to be quite competent, much more so than the people that worked on Attack on Titan, since I initially got what I wanted to see from this adaptation, which I was kind of expecting to be terrible, but their decision to put in something that could have easily been covered in an extended length episode and be able to deliver the gold that they did before makes me want to chalk up their success as nothing fluke.
This not what I, or any of the other fans of series series, signed up to see when we decided to check this out this series, because it makes a series that people enjoy look terrible, especially because I do not have that urge to continue watching this series any further.
Studios that produce anime and the people that make merchandise related to the series are banking on people finding enjoyment in a series and if they can be made to watch right up until the last episode, it is likely that they would buy the blu rays and other merchandise, but if the audience feels like their time is being wasted, they will stop watching and not even bother getting either the merchandise related to the series or volumes of the original source, and that is what Wit Studio has certainly made it feel like I wasted my time.
Congratulations, Wit Studio, you have disappointed me so badly that I am going to put you right in the same trash bin as John Grisham, because I never want to see anything you guys make, regardless of the staff you bring on board.
Thankfully, this was only major problem, so I can at least leave things here.
While there was only one issue, the fact that the issue was something nobody should have to deal with hurt both the quality of the episode and the series enough that this episode can only be considered to be an episode that should exist.
Despite the fact that there was at least one thing to like, aside from visual and the magic, the fact that episode felt unnecessary and nothing really seemed to happen, except for probably three three things, made this a complete waste of time.
I recommended that everyone avoid this episode like the plague, because it only makes this series look bad, enough so that I am now going to only follow the manga of this series.
If you liked this review and would like to see more, please consider supporting me on Patreon or, if you want to see the best version of this series, buy a copy of the fourth volume from Book Depository, who offers free shipping to many countries around the world, so that I can continue following a series that we all enjoy, though it will only be the manga now, and possibly find more worthwhile anime for you guys to watch.
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