Meeting Date: 10/17/2020

Disclaimer: The Herald Anime Club discusses shows in a generally unmoderated format. 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 tonight

Anthony Simpson: Evening.

Samantha Ferreira: Tonight, we’re heading back to the mean streets of Ikebukuro with Ikebukuro West Gate Park’s second episode: “The one that makes a very good case for labor unions”

Anthony Simpson: Who knew we would go from the wacky weed it is bad to lets talk about late-stage capitalism and wage theft

Samantha Ferreira: Right? It’s such a turn. And really, this episode felt so much better without the reefer madness schtick

A blonde man in glasses looks down from the top of a building as he stands on its edge, clinging to a safety railing.

Anthony Simpson: Definitely an improvement on that front.

Samantha Ferreira: Yeah… the pacing and even the writing just felt a lot better

Anthony Simpson: This one wasn’t as hamfisted and just…wrong as what we saw in the 1st episode.

Samantha Ferreira: Yeah… It felt like they knew what the hell they were doing this time.

The commentary didn’t feel as overt and hammy (though it still was super hammy), and it really began to play into the greater dynamics of Ikebukuro. The introduction of the Red Angels was handled pretty OK… and I kind of like how the dynamics play out at this point.

A brown-haired man in a red cardigan smiles at the camera. He is surrounded by rough-looking men in red hoodies.

Anthony Simpson: I was wondering when we were starting to see the other groups.

Samantha Ferreira: Same.

I like how they really introduced the Red Angels with that tense showdown, too.

Anthony Simpson: Same.

Anthony Simpson: So, ANN does not list who did the script for the first episode but it seems that this episode and the next episode were done by Fumihiko Shimo who is doing the series composition.

Samantha Ferreira: Interesting.

Anthony Simpson: That might explain the difference between the two.

Samantha Ferreira: I can see that. Hopefully, this means that the next episode works as well as this one.

Anthony Simpson: I certainly hope so.

Samantha Ferreira: I mean, this one just felt like a totally different show. The atmosphere, even the general tone just felt so far removed from the weird spectacle we had last week.

A man with black hair with red highlights holds a bouquet as he stares down a blonde man in a suit. Both are flanked by tough-looking men.

Anthony Simpson: Almost a case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Samantha Ferreira: Right?

I hope we don’t get more of the drug stuff.

Anthony Simpson: I would like to think of that as just one thing and I certainly hope I am right in that regards

Samantha Ferreira: Likewise. It’d be a shame to have it go back there

Anthony Simpson: yea it would be

Samantha Ferreira: To be honest, if I had one gripe this episode, it was that the fight scene was a bit too short. It felt like it ended as soon as it began.

A blonde man in a black shirt punches a man in a black leather jacket.

Anthony Simpson: I have to agree with that. I was hoping it would be a bit longer than it was.

Samantha Ferreira: It was like “OK, this big buildup, the tense jumper scene, the two boyfriends in rival gangs… this is going to be good,”

Then, a ten-second thing That said, I’m kind of amazed they went the whole “attempted suicide” route. That was just a turn

Anthony Simpson: Well I mean considering what kind of shit OK Curry did to its workers I can see someone doing that.

Samantha Ferreira: True.

I’m just amazed the show went there

And treated it with the gravity it deserved

Anthony Simpson: They certainly did and I have to give the show credit for doing that.

Samantha Ferreira: Yeah… It could’ve easily become something of a farce

Anthony Simpson: I would have been upset if they treated it as a farce.

Samantha Ferreira: Likewise. I would’ve tossed out a vote-abandon right away

Three men in dark suits bow politely before an array of microphones.

Anthony Simpson: I would have voted to abandon if they would have not treated it as seriously as it did.

Samantha Ferreira: Yeah… there are some things you don’t mess with. Aniwho, any final thoughts this week?

Anthony Simpson: I certainly hope the next episode doesn’t go backwards and we get another episode 1 type of episode.

Samantha Ferreira: Same… I guess we’ll find out next week! ‘Til then though, remember: Big corporations will destroy you and everyone you hold dear if it means making one thin dime more for their shareholders. Have a great night!

Anthony Simpson: Good night