Disclaimer: The Herald Anime Club discusses shows as they’re airing. Naturally, there will be spoilers for a given episode. You have been warned!
Mike Ferreira: Good evening, everyone, and welcome to the 22nd meeting of the Herald Anime Club. I’m Mike Ferreira, and whoever bet me that this wouldn’t last a season owes me five bucks. Joking aside, this week’s panel features L.B. Bryant and Anthony Simpson.
Anthony Simpson: Evening.
Mike Ferreira: Tonight, we have a good amount to talk about – it’s time to say goodbye to Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid, and welcome The Royal Tutor as we march into the new season.
L.B. Bryant: I know it’s super early but at this point I’m willing to say that Maid Dragon is an early contender for AOTY.
Mike Ferreira: Likewise. That last episode was just a total gut punch
L.B. Bryant: There’s still lots of time for another series to overshadow it but it’s a strong pick IMO.
Anthony Simpson: It’s going to be in my top 5 for the year for sure.
Mike Ferreira: So you’re not putting your cart behind Himouto! Umaru-chan 2? (joking! Don’t kill me.)
Anthony Simpson: Never seen Himouto! Umaru-chan.
Anthony Simpson: It quite the emotional episode.
L.B. Bryant: Last episode was done so well overall. Excellent pacing and strong emotional punches.
Mike Ferreira: God… Dragon Maid made those punches hurt, too.
L.B. Bryant: I loved that the series didn’t attempt to shoehorn in jokes just for the sake of doing so and let itself tell a serious story.
Mike Ferreira: Indeed. I think it needed that, though.
L.B. Bryant: I agree.
Mike Ferreira: I mean.. they hinted at it before, but they finally got the elephant in the room out there: Kobayashi’s a human – we don’t live very long
Anthony Simpson: I really liked how they hit home how much Tohru helps around the apartment.
Mike Ferreira: Indeed… and really, that whole segment where Kobayashi started withdrawing from the world again helped to sell how much she needed Tohru, as a person first and foremost
L.B. Bryant: Agreed there. I was about to say that Tohru had become more than a maid to Kobayashi. Tohru had become a life partner who completed Kobayashi.
Mike Ferreira: Definitely
L.B. Bryant: Which brings me to my second point, I love how this show was a yuri show without being overt and cheeky about it.
Anthony Simpson: she did.
L.B. Bryant: It told a genuine relationship story.
Mike Ferreira: Indeed. And, really, I’m happy with the way it ended.
Mike Ferreira: We got real closure from this one
L.B. Bryant: No girls making out for tantalization factor or anything of that sort.
Anthony Simpson: It was a great ending, there was really nothing else to add or else they could have done.
L.B. Bryant: Doesn’t change the fact that I want a second season lol
Mike Ferreira: I wouldn’t complain
Anthony Simpson: I would be fine with a second season, but if they don’t make one I would okay with that.
Mike Ferreira: Exactly.
Mike Ferreira: We got our story beats, we have our melancholy, yet satisfying ending. I’d happily leave it there
Mike Ferreira: Also: Forehead girl is still super gay and I love it.
L.B. Bryant: I disagree only in the sense that this final episode made me realize how much I wasn’t ready to say good bye to these characters.
L.B. Bryant: Everyone grew on me so quickly.
Mike Ferreira: That’s a good ending, though
L.B. Bryant: I don’t disagree with that point.
L.B. Bryant: It was a solid ending.
Mike Ferreira: To quote PT Barnum, “always leave them wanting more.”
L.B. Bryant: Absolutely.
Anthony Simpson: exactly.
Mike Ferreira: But yeah… I would NOT say no to twelve more episodes of this series., Ever.
L.B. Bryant: Alright, I’m going to put everyone on the spot: Favorite character?
Mike Ferreira: That’s a tough one! I’d probably have to say Kanna, though I see a lot of myself in Kobayashi (software engineers, unite!)
L.B. Bryant: Do you often get drunk and tear your friends clothes off in public places? :)
Mike Ferreira: Shhhhh. The office doesn’t know about that yet.
L.B. Bryant: lol
Anthony Simpson: The cop-out answer is Kanna cause well Kanna. I’m not a software engineer myself but I saw a good bit of myself in Kobayashi as well.
Anthony Simpson: That said Tohru is my favorite.
L.B. Bryant: I’ll be the odd one out and say Tohru and Fafnir
Mike Ferreira: Fafnir is amazing, too.
Mike Ferreira: It’s really hard to pick a favorite here, since everyone was just so charming
Mike Ferreira: Even bit characters like Georgie were totes lovable.
L.B. Bryant: That’s true.
Anthony Simpson: That too. It’s such a good cast that you really couldn’t hate anyone.
Anthony Simpson: Even with some of Lucoa’s issues you couldn’t hate her.
Mike Ferreira: Indeed.
Mike Ferreira: My only regret is that we didn’t get enough time with Elma
Anthony Simpson: Elma needed more screen time.
L.B. Bryant: Yeah. She ended up being kind of a one trick pony in the end since most of her jokes revolved around food.
Mike Ferreira: Indeed.
L.B. Bryant: I would have loved to have seen her get more screen time but oh well.
Mike Ferreira: A shame… but what can ya do?
L.B. Bryant: Indeed there.
L.B. Bryant: She was still a totally likable character but they could’ve done more with her.
Mike Ferreira: Definitely. She was a great fish out of water character that they just didn’t capitalize on
Anthony Simpson: It’s an adaptation so changes had to be made for the story, but she should have more screen time.
Mike Ferreira: Agreed.
Mike Ferreira: Any closing thoughts before we say goodbye to the series?
L.B. Bryant: I think we covered pretty much everything that I wanted to say at least.
Anthony Simpson: I’m gonna miss it each week.
Mike Ferreira: Well stated, Anthony.
Anthony Simpson: It was a highlight of my watch schedule each Saturday.
Mike Ferreira: Hopefully, The Royal Tutor can fill that void
Mike Ferreira: From this first episode, I’m kind of loving it
L.B. Bryant: I really enjoyed the first episode
Anthony Simpson: It was enjoyable first episode.
L.B. Bryant: More than anything else, I loved the interplay between the characters in this first episode.
L.B. Bryant: If you wanted to be super nitpicky you could say that the first episode was channeling Negima but I argue that that isn’t a fair point.
Mike Ferreira: It’s really not
Mike Ferreira: One’s about a child teacher, the other’s about a teacher that looks like a child
Mike Ferreira: (and has this SUPER masculine voice)
Anthony Simpson: I’m going to call it now Licht is best boy.
Mike Ferreira: Licht is amazing. He will be someone’s husbando before this weekend’s out
L.B. Bryant: I don’t often do ‘fantasy dub casting’ but I’d love to hear J. Michael Tatum providing the voice for the tutor when/if this series is simuldubbed.
Mike Ferreira: That would be amazing.
Anthony Simpson: Interesting on the tutor this is his seiyu’s first leading role in on his second show.
Mike Ferreira: Interesting.
Mike Ferreira: He had bit parts on Yamishibai as his debut, right?
Anthony Simpson: Yes
Mike Ferreira: Hell of a jump
Anthony Simpson: Yeah
L.B. Bryant: Another point that I heard from someone that I talked to about this series is how annoyed he was that the princes all seemed like typical tropes which again seems unfair to me since we’ve seen these tropes hundreds of times from female characters and have dealt with them just fine. Why would it be different with male characters?
Mike Ferreira: Because double standards?
L.B. Bryant: Indeed.
Anthony Simpson: Yea I would agree with double standards.
L.B. Bryant: Honestly I didn’t even consider the princes to be overly tropey.
Mike Ferreira: It’s the first fuckin’ episode. Even if they are, there’s room to grow
L.B. Bryant: Absolutely.
Anthony Simpson: There is room to grow.
Mike Ferreira: Like, cripes… I didn’t realize that Heine was basically the medieval equivalent of Golden Boy (super brilliant, but not classically certified)
Mike Ferreira: Or that he gave zero fucks. Like when he just started reading Leonhardt’s diary out the window
Anthony Simpson: That moment was great.
L.B. Bryant: That moment was fantastic.
Mike Ferreira: Definitely. As was the whole combat roll under the bed
L.B. Bryant: I just wish we knew how many episodes this series is going to be. Based on the pace of the storytelling in the first episode I’m hoping for a two cour series but we’ll see I guess.
Anthony Simpson: that was amazing
Mike Ferreira: Indeed. I could see this being 24 episodes, easy
Anthony Simpson: I find myself relating to Heine a bit in several ways. While I don’t practice anymore due to my health issues I taught martial arts a lot in my teen years to a variety of different types of people and the struggles I sometimes had to deal with people who had various levels of seriousness in their training. Plus I look a lot younger than 32 if I don’t have any facial hair.
Anthony Simpson: I’m also not a big person either.
Mike Ferreira: I could see some people finding themselves in the character, for sure
Mike Ferreira: So… random note: Am I the only one who thought it was weird for a teacher to be carrying a riding crop around like that?
Anthony Simpson: I tend to find myself relating to characters who are teachers mostly do to me being an instructor myself in the past.
Anthony Simpson: I didn’t think it was weird myself.
Mike Ferreira: Fair enough – just me then
Anthony Simpson: I’m curious to see what they do for the rest of the show with the princes.
Mike Ferreira: Likewise. I hope that it doesn’t fall into that “one note” trap
Anthony Simpson: Like does Heine change them to make them better people.
Anthony Simpson: I’ll be sad if they don’t change all much.
Mike Ferreira: Same.
Anthony Simpson: We did get hints that they will probably change. We did get to see Leonhard at least take the quiz.
Mike Ferreira: Definitely.
Anthony Simpson: I haven’t read the manga so I have no idea of its going to play out.
Mike Ferreira: Likewise. So this’ll be a fun journey for everyone
Anthony Simpson: I had no idea that this is an adaptation of a Shonen manga.
Mike Ferreira: Surprisingly, yeah… that shocked me, too
Mike Ferreira: Seems like something you’d see in, say, Ribbon or LaLa.
Anthony Simpson: yea it runs in the same magazine that runs Black Butler.
Mike Ferreira: Go figure.
Mike Ferreira: Anyway, any final thoughts for this week?
Anthony Simpson: It was a good first episode. I’m curious to see where to goes.
Mike Ferreira: Definitely. I’m hopeful on this one.
Mike Ferreira: Anyway, thanks for joining us this evening. Here’s hoping the rest of this season goes down like a fresh sachertorte.
Mike Ferreira: Have a great night!
Anthony Simpson: Have a good night.