Monday, 27 September 2010

Occult Academy - Episode 13 (Completed)

If last week's episode of Occult Academy seemed like a natural end-point to the series, then think again - although the show's wicked witch was defeated, the future still looks as bleak a wasteland as ever, so something somewhere has clearly gone awry with any plans to destroy Nostradamus' Key.

The reason why everything has gone pear-shaped soon becomes clear as Fumiaki prepares to return to the future, and Maya lands a surprise on him - she's booked for Bunmei and his mother to come and perform at the school's end of year closing ceremony.  It appears that for all her love of the occult, Maya has clearly never watched any time travel-based science fiction, as we all know that meeting your past or future self can have all sorts of nasty consequences, as is the case here.  So we learn that this meeting of Bunmeis from different times is the real cause of the alien invasion which all-but wipes out humanity, all in the name of a family reunion of sorts.  Oops.

No matter how hard they tried, the invading aliens couldn't wipe out Earth's hat industry
Equally bizarrely, the powers that be from the future agree to allow Fumiaki one more day in the future before he has to return, before extending this yet further when Maya tells Bunmei's mother his services are no longer required.  This seems like a pretty risky game to play with the entire Earth in the balance, and of course these decisions are guaranteed to go horribly wrong once young Bunmei decides to sneak away and check out Waldstein Academy for himself without his mother's knowledge, while Maya all but pleads with Fumiaki to stay in the past with her.  Needless to say, Bunmei junior and senior end up coming face to face and aliens duly invade via the hold in space-time created as a result - but this isn't quite the end of the world as we know it, as a moment of madness and bravery from Fumiaki somehow manages to stave off the invading forces (don't ask me how, I couldn't quite get my head around it either) and save the world.  Hurrah!

So there we have it, via a final episode that pretty much sums up Occult Academy in a nutshell - some of its plot points and goings-on were basically ludicrous and stupid while others simply didn't make sense at all, but boy was it fun to watch.  Aside from those two episodes where the series really dropped the ball (there was no episode nine or ten of this show, right?), Occult Academy demonstrated a barmy yet deft ability to leverage its zany humour to maximum effect, creating a number of laugh out loud funny episodes which seemed as though they'd forgotten about the big picture until the show reined itself in to deliver some mind-blowing, eye-popping instalments to finish things off in a broadly satisfactory fashion.

I'd probably slate other shows for ending with an episode so full of logical craters and moments of stupidity from its previously eminently sensible main characters, but somehow it just fits the flawed genius of this particular series perfectly.  If you're looking for a show with internal logic that matches up throughout then Occult Academy will infuriate you on a regular basis - throw such concerns out of the window and simply strap yourself in for the ride however, and you'll have a riot.

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