Anime Review: Occult Academy Episode 3

(Originally published on Livejournal on 8/27/10)

Anime Review:
Occult Academy Episode 3

Anime Review in a Minute: What this is all about – I watch the shows so you don’t HAVE to!

About the Series: The head of the Waldstein Academy has suddenly passed away. His daughter, Maya, returns to the school with a singular purpose in mind: to close down the academy. With a reputation for studying strange and supernatural events, the school has a nickname of ‘The Occult Academy’ — something that Maya absolutely loathes. Out of nowhere, a strange man descends from the sky; he tells Maya that he’s actually from the future and was sent back to prevent the Nostradamus Prophecies from coming true. Together, the reluctant duo team up to find the Nostradamus Key.

ep.3 tl;dr review: Moe-moe Mikaze shows up to spice up Bunmei’s life; His entire body turns into an arm.

In this episode: There’s a rumor that the demon tengu has been seen stealing people around town, and Maya orders Bunmei to search for it — not because she thinks the tengu exists, but because she thinks it may lead to the Nostradamus Key. Feeling depressed and totally out of place, Bunmei wanders in to a local restaurant and ends up receiving exactly what he needed: his favorite meal hand delivered by his dream girl. Bunmei immediately strikes up a rapport with Mikaze, who offers to show him all the sights around town. Despite her demure, bashful personality, she shows up with a high-end sports car and tears about the town, reducing Bunmei into a quivering pile of mush. While touring the massive underground Zouzan Bunker, Maya observes from the shadows with disdain as Bunmei bonds with Mikaze, as she continues on her quest to uncover the mystery of the tengu.

My Thoughts: Maya takes a back seat this episode to focus on the sad-sack Fumiaki/Bunmei instead. Not sure if he is pitiful or just pitiable, but he’s not exactly the most interesting character in the series. Even though he has returned to the time when his pint-sized self was a 15-minute celebrity, Bunmei soon learns that you really can’t return home again, gets all mopey and wanders into the nearby noodle joint. There he gets just what the doctor ordered: one Mikaze with a side of curry. In addition to being a sorry-assed loser character, we soon learn that Bunmei is also one huge throbbing hormone factory as he falls for Mizake at first sight.

She’s perfect for him…perhaps too perfect. I mean, really — Him: Eeyore personality, bad haircut in an ill-fitting suit. Her: Cute and stacked, ultra-moe personality, giving him extra attention and pushing herself conspicuously into him. She shows up just at the right place and the right time, too; is the only person (other than his mother) to call Bunmei Jr. by his real name, and toodles around in a fancy car like a race car driver. It’s all too perfect. I call shenanigans! Mikaze, no doubt, is playing dumb on purpose, and probably holds some surprises down the road. Secret agent, perhaps?

But enough of all the Bunmei focus already. Watching him all hot and bothered like a first-time teenager is funny and all, but time to return back to Maya. She’s the beating heart and soul of the series, and the more screentime she gets the better. Oh, and is it just me, or was the animation and artwork quality on this episode a notch or two down from before? Hrrrrm.

Remember: it’s a short series (12 episodes), so every little thing that is introduced will probably turn up again in the future. There’s just not enough time for much extraneous stuff. Tengu, Zouzan Bunker, the bug-eyed landlord? Consider them jigsaw puzzle pieces to be put together down the road.

For more information:

Review of Episode 1: http://matthigh.livejournal.com/511666.html
Review of Episode 2: http://matthigh.livejournal.com/519401.html

The Verdict:

Up Next (not necessarily in this order): Black Butler II, Nurarihyon no Mago, Shiki, Legend of Legendary Heroes

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