Meeting Date: 10/13/2019

Disclaimer: The Herald Anime Club discusses shows as they’re airing. Naturally, there will be spoilers for a given episode. You have been warned!

Samantha Ferreira: Hi everyone, and welcome to the Herald Anime Club! I’m Samantha, and I’m here with Anthony Simpson and L.B. Bryant

L.B. Bryant: Hello!

Anthony Simpson: Evening

Samantha Ferreira: Today, we’re starting an all-new anime season with Ascendance of a Bookworm.

L.B. Bryant: I had such a good time with these first two episodes! :)

Anthony Simpson: It was an interesting first two episodes to say the least.

Samantha Ferreira: I really wanted to like this, but I’m going to have to be the contrarian and say I really didn’t enjoy it

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L.B. Bryant: That’s sad to me.

Anthony Simpson: I liked what I saw of it but I wouldn’t say it blew me away.

Samantha Ferreira: It’s like DanMachi: I like the world, I like the social dynamics.. but I can’t stand the main character. She struck me as a self-serving dick from the get-go.

L.B. Bryant: Because she wants to read books?

Samantha Ferreira: No, because that’s ALL she cares about.

Anthony Simpson: I mean “book worm” is in the title so it makes sense that she wants to read.

Samantha Ferreira: It’s just… it’s a lot of things. Like…
From the get-go:

  1. She tears her family’s home apart
  2. She tries to destroy her sister’s doll
  3. She straight-up begs a shopkeep to hold a book
  4. She begs her family for parchment

And so on and so forth. It just… It got to the point where I kind of said “OK, she’s unbearable”

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L.B. Bryant: That’s a shame. I found her adorable honestly.
She was isekai’d into a not entirely pleasant new world and just wanted something that she loved in her previous life as comfort.

Anthony Simpson: There is one thing bugged me but, it wasn’t so much the show’s fault as it was Crunchyroll, was her name. She was Myne in the first episode then Main in the second. So which is it then?

Samantha Ferreira: It should be Myne, if the light novels are an indicator? But yeah… I’m not sure either

Anthony Simpson: I will be honest she isn’t my favorite main character of an isekai.

Samantha Ferreira: Re: her wanting comfort: I understand wanting comfort. However, it got to the point where it was flat-out unrealistic. Like… she [literally] just woke up, said “this world sucks, done now!”

Anthony Simpson: To be fair, in her case I’m sure a lot of people would probably say the same thing if it happened to them.

L.B. Bryant: In her defense, from what I’ve seen that world does suck, lol

Anthony Simpson: Going from what we have now to medieval times.

Samantha Ferreira: That may be, but ffs. give us something to work with. Not just “I woke up and it sucks” but… she didn’t even have a real character interaction outside of her mom saying “stay in bed and feel better <3”

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L.B. Bryant: So I guess the question is, did you both hate this enough to want to drop it? MAL says it’s scheduled for 14 episodes.

Samantha Ferreira: I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t like it, either, so I can go either way

Anthony Simpson: I don’t hate it either. I do like what I have seen so far.
So I want to talk about the animation. One thing I really enjoyed was how Myne’s hair changed once she got it washed. It wasn’t so dull looking anymore.

L.B. Bryant: That was a nice little touch.

Samantha Ferreira: It really was
Visually, the show is super pretty. Great art style and character designs abounds

Anthony Simpson: Its a pretty show.

L.B. Bryant: I do love the little chibi eyecatch moments that are thrown in every so often.

Anthony Simpson: The end cards were great.

Samantha Ferreira: I liked the next episode previews where you had the scholar just deadpanning and being a straight man, while trying to keep Myne from blurting out spoilers

Anthony Simpson: That was a nice touch.

Samantha Ferreira: It was super cute

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Anthony Simpson: I do wish we get to see Myne be more fleshed out with her character development instead of just being all about books all the time.

L.B. Bryant: From what I’ve been told, the world-building and character development is a slow burn in the original novels.

Anthony Simpson: Though we did see bits of it with her making the shampoo so she at least seems interested in making things better for them.
I haven’t read the novels myself.

Samantha Ferreira: Indeed.

L.B. Bryant: Me either, but I was told that by a friend on Twitter who has heh

Samantha Ferreira: But that slow burn does not work in anime usually
Like… I wish they could give us more than what they did, because there are flashes of a likable character there… they’re just buried under “Books books books fuck you world books”

Anthony Simpson: It can work if it has enough episodes to make it work. I don’t know if 14 is enough to make it work.

Samantha Ferreira: Indeed, Though let’s be honest: if it’s remotely popular, it’ll get a second cour

Anthony Simpson: True, that can happen.

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Samantha Ferreira: Looking at the ISBN listing there’s 20 books – they could easily make this into a long-runner if it catches on

L.B. Bryant: I’m hoping it does. I’d like to see this one get a real chance to tell its story.

Anthony Simpson: True or they cut a bunch of stuff then get a read the LN ending.

Samantha Ferreira: True
But I don’t see it happening
I see this one getting an extended run – there’s too much potential for growth in it

Anthony Simpson: True there is potential for growth here.
Its a got a good staff behind it. I mean we have the director of Outlaw Star and Sakura Wars: The Movie at the helm.

Samantha Ferreira: True.
Honestly, I’m kind of curious about the greater world now – like… I want to learn more about how it’s built up – the entire city is full of townhouses, the market just bustling with peoples and seems somewhat prosperous… but at the same time the local shop noted that even nobles fall into financial problems

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Anthony Simpson: Now THAT was some a touch I liked seeing that even the blue bloods can get into money problems.

Samantha Ferreira: Indeed
I really like the greater world in this
Hrm… Any final thoughts this week?

L.B. Bryant: Nothing from me. So far I’m really digging this series and am looking forward to getting to know Myne.

Anthony Simpson: Nothing else from me. I just want to see Myne be more than just books and writing all the time.

Samantha Ferreira: Likewise. I’m hoping we see some shift into a greater motivation soon, myself. ^^;
But that’s all the time we have this week. Til next time, remember: if you live on the fifth floor, accept the piggyback ride if offered.
Have a great night!

Anthony Simpson: Good night

L.B. Bryant: Night

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