91 Days – Episode 12 (Series Finale & Review)

One more for the road.

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91 Days defies expectations one last time to bring us a finale that haunts and comforts in equal measures, and a conclusion as steeped in uncertainty as the series itself.  The more I think about it, the more I like it, and I can’t wait to talk about it with you.

First, though, let’s give any newcomers curious about this gangster drama a chance to decide if they wanna pick it up (hint: do it). We’ll start with a spoiler-free review and then move into the episode commentary. I’ll let you know when the shift happens, so scroll on for thoughts both overarching and focused.

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orange – Episode 12

Welcome to the Darkest Timeline.

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I’m back from holiday, recovering from jet lag, and coming down with (hopefully just) a cold, but I really didn’t want to try rolling two episodes and a season review into this Sunday’s post, so I managed to squeak out some belated commentary during a slow work day. Apologies if it’s not the most polished of pieces.

orange shuffles timelines a bunch this week, giving us the original past timeline from Kakeru’s perspective before shifting us back into our usual original-future and current-past timelines. As you’d expect, the world through Kakeru’s eyes is a heartbreaking one, achingly honest and really hard to watch.

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Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju – Episode 12

And now the moment you’ve all been waiting for?

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Showa Genroku’s tragedy-coaster reaches its summit and drops us straight down in more ways than one, fulfilling its first-episode promises in dramatic fashion. There may be a small light at the end of this tunnel, but it’s an awful long way off. For now, we need to talk about our cast and our story, and about why things happened the way they did–or, rather, about why that “why” remains so elusive in the first place. It’s another essay, this one in four parts. Get comfy. It’s a long way down to the bottom of this post.

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Noragami Aragoto – Episode 12: “Your Voice Calls Out”

A god by any other name…

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After last week’s bumpy ride, Noragami is back to doing what it does best: Character-driven storytelling, slick-looking battles, and moments of simple yet profound emotional resonance. And if there appears to be a little mist in my eyes, I assure you it’s just from the dust our battling gods kicked up this week. Definitely just that.

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GANGSTA. – Episode 12: “Odds and Ends” (Finale & Review)

Well, that’s one way to boost manga sales.

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After a bumpy third act hamstrung by ongoing production issues, Gangsta comes roaring back with a stellar final episode that reminds me of all the reasons I fell in love with it in the first place. Taking time to expand upon the supporting cast while never losing its central focus on our main trio, “Odds and Ends” is one-part character study and one-part tense, action-packed shootout, drenched in melancholy and badassery in equal turns and looking damn sexy to boot. It’d be one hell of a great way to end the series… if this were anything even remotely resembling an ending, that is.

As has become customary, I’ll spend the first part of this post providing a mostly spoiler-free series review and the second discussing the episode itself. Hit the jump and I’ll let any newbies know when to close the window.

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Snow White with the Red Hair – Episode 12 (Season Finale & Review)

And so we come at last to the end middle of things.

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Snow White hits its first-cour finale today, so it makes sense to spend the first half of this post providing a mostly spoiler-free review for anyone who somehow hasn’t made this a part of their watch list and is wondering if they should. Short answer: Yes, you should. Long answer: Hit the jump for some glowing paragraphs, and I’ll let you know when we’re moving back into spoiler territory.

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My Love Story!! – Episode 12: “My Grades”

Takeo takes on his most formidable foe yet: Math I.

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As the title suggests, this is the week when Takeo’s poor grades threaten to catch up to him, but it’s less about Takeo’s school work and more about his future plans, and how those plans mesh (or clash) with those around him. As a result, it’s full of college talk, hilariously overbearing and eager-to-please parents practically proposing to Yamato, and a lingering question of where everyone sees themselves after high school. Oh, and it all basically turns out to be Suna trolling Takeo for a solid 20 minutes. Now that’s future planning for you!

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