Monday, 9 May 2011

The World God Only Knows Season 2 - Episode 5

With the whole Haqua incident put to bed, Keima finally has a little time out to figure just how much time he's wasted on Loose Souls and how close he is to completing the task required of him.  Only another 60,000 or so conquests to go then...

That isn't the half of it however, as the real nightmare for Keima is revealed soon enough - the fact that the next Loose Soul he needs to dispose of is currently entrenched within classmate Chihiro Kosaka.  This is a problem for Keima because Chihiro is very much an ordinary girl, with no personality traits, interests or anything else out of the ordinary.  How is our gaming expert supposed to find a hook in to her "route"?  What's more, she seems to be in love with somebody else, although this turns out to be little more than the latest in a number of fleeting crushes.

In fact, it's this news that turns Keima from a somewhat sympathetic listener to a man on the offensive, throwing numerous insults at Kosaka only to have them all returned with interest.  So potent are Chihiro's attacks that Keima leaves the classroom a broken man, losing himself in his world of visual novels with seemingly no way to break him out of his shell... unless, that is, the first subject of his Loose Soul trials and tribulations might have something to say on the matter.

Having complained about the clichéd attributes of previous girls, I suppose it was inevitable that at some point the series would throw those words back in my face by introducing the most ordinary girl possible to Keima's list of targets.  What I perhaps wasn't expecting was Keima's own reactions throughout this episode - while much of his disgust was directed at Chihiro's "real world" demeanour, there was a feeling throughout that there was a little more to his frustrations than merely that, before Ayumi's reappearance come the end of the instalment makes things more interesting still.  It's at times like this I'm glad that I've resisted reading the manga, as I'm in the dark about where we're headed with this story arc, and for once with this series I'm actually genuinely interested to see where it all leads without any real obvious anime tropes to lean on thus far - good news indeed via an episode which tried a little too hard with its visual metaphors at times (and I have no idea what's with the whole Snoopy thing) but was still entertaining enough in general despite straining to draw drama out of its lead character.

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