sexy mosquitos, ok then.

It was a close battle – Subeta ga F ni naru is intriguing and Sakurako-san is oddly compelling, but One Punch Man wins as the show I’ll be blogging by virtue of being so damn fun.
Episode two introduces us to the other character you tend to see on all the promotional material for One Punch Man – Genos the cyborg. Apparently he used to be human but was modified, and although his past is intentionally mysterious at this point – his main mission in life is to Become Strong. He is already pretty strong, of course, and uses his fire-based powers to try to defend a city from a giant flock of killer mosquitos. However, he isn’t a match for their queen, who would probably have killed him if Saitama hadn’t saved the day. Amazed and humbled by Saitama’s incredible strength, Genos asks to be Saitama’s disciple, who nonchalantly accepts.

Eventually some more super-powered beasts appear and do the by now routine display of how abnormally powerful and undefeatable they are before Saitama kills them with a single punch. They spare one cyborg gorilla, though, and in exchange for his life he tells them about how they were sent from the ‘House of Evolution’.

Hurray for Cyborgs!

Mosquito-Woman’s powered up form is an 80s music video apparently.

Much like the first episode, One Punch Man‘s second outing shows that it’s at its funniest when everybody’s straight-laced approach is contrasted with Saitama’s indifference. In a lot of other shows I tend to find these indifferent kind of characters annoying at times, but it really does work well here. Without Saitama, the show would be content to be an oddly violent saturday morning-esque show with ridiculous villains and serious characters with Sad Pasts, but Saitama truly brings the show together and makes it what it is. A statement like that sounds pretty dumb and obvious – of course a main character is important – but there’s been so many shitty anime (especially this season) where the main character could be replaced with a bucket of fish for all the difference it makes to the plot. Saitama’s just this fantastic blend of extraordinary and ordinary – he’s everyday enough in his reactions and wants for us to be able to easily relate to him, but so ridiculously powerful that he’s far away from us at the same time. I’m also really liking Genos – he’s a pretty cliche character, but that seems to have been the intention, and he manages to be funny solely by being contrasted with Saitama. (also he’s basically a robot, and I’m down with that).

This episode also demonstrated how utterly brilliant the show can be with its comic timing. Sometimes it’s just a line, or a particular facial expression, but it always works and it always makes me laugh. (I really loved, for example, the scene where Saitama was getting visibly bored from Genos’s overly long and angsty novel of a backstory)

The animation doesn’t seem to have suffered after the first episode, which is a nice sign – it really is great to look at, but there’s a lot that can be said for the sound and music as well. My only real concern at this point is whether it runs the risk of being too formulaic, and whether it can rise above that.

Saitama’s just all ‘ok whatever’.

I almost, almost feel sorry for all these lame villains that die immediately.

Out of 5,
melonmelonmelonmelon

Episode 3

Most of the characters in OPM don’t even look like they’re from the same show.

Saitama and Genos set off to find the ‘House of Evolution’ that the cyborg gorilla spoke of. This is a giant laboratory owned by a Doctor Genus (seriously did his name have to be that close to Genos)- whose radical ideas for the artificial evolution of humankind earned him scorn and ridicule from his science peers. Unable to rely on anyone else to help him, he made a whole bunch of clones of himself (after making himself younger, of course) to help create all kinds of monstrous creatures. He currently has his sights set on Saitama, as he wants to study him to find out the secret of his strength.

When Genos and Saitama arrive at the lab, though, Genos blows the whole thing up – presumably along with most of Genus’s clones. Luckily for Genus, he was in the basement seeking the assistance of Carnage Kabuto – one of his own creations with a somewhat troubling character design who is so powerful that he had to be locked away. Eventually it ends with a showdown between Kabuto and Saitama…with predictable results.

Have you ever been so vain you made a whole load of clones of yourself, and then had all of them style their hair in the same lame way?

what no I’m not including two caps of half-broken Genos because its oddly attractive, what a terrible accusation to make.

This episode was where One Punch Man’s formula became a little more worryingly apparent, so I really hope it changes up a bit from here on out. Then again, if the audience becomes frustrated over how easy Saitama’s fights are, we can only imagine how he himself must feel – still unable to find a single decent opponent.

I feel like the real star of this episode was Doctor Genus, a character ridiculous enough to be amusing, stupid haircut and all. But I’m not sure if that’s really a good thing. The episode sure did seem to dedicate a lot of time to him and his flashbacks and backstory, but in the end he didn’t exactly feel like an important character. Maybe I’m wrong though, since he actually lived. While part of me hopes that the show just keeps introducing more bizarre characters, another part of me hopes that it doesn’t completely snow itself in under them and try to rely on new characters to keep the formula from getting too stale. While I have faith that it can continue to make the formula work, I must admit there is a pretty big risk of this.

While this episode wasnt really as strong as the first two, it played to the shows strengths and the fludity in the fighting scenes was perhaps even more impressive than usual. I’m looking forward to blogging the rest of it because there’s a wild sense of fun and ridiculousness in this show that just may be filling that Space Dandy shaped hole in my heart.

Do you think this is intended to look like Unit1 from Evangelion

The face of a man who missed a sale.

Out of 5,
melonmelonmelonmelon

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