Posts Tagged 'spicy wolf'

Spice and Wolf: The Little Wolf Inside the Girl is Sad

But not in this picture, she isn’t. :3

I like this arc better than the previous one already. The first arc was needlessly complicated with coinage devaluation and whatnot, but this one is straightforward duplicity. The surging thrill of economics is absent, of course (so far) but I have confidence that no matter what, Lawrence will pull some kind of complicated economic scheme from his hindquarters that will save them all.

Of course, that’s not going to matter much if Horo hates him, which was the capstone of 10. If all those merchants denied Lawrence help simple because he had Horo in tow, then he is in serious straits, and now that Horo is pissed at him, his world has come crashing down rather horridly. The character interplay dynamics I mentioned last time are still in full force, with the viewer left wondering just who, exactly, wears the pants in the Horo x Lawrence relationship. I really wish I could read the original novels and get this direct from the source, but, alas. It’s not like the anime is bad, but I get the feeling watching the anime that the novels are much, much better. Which, considering that Spice and Wolf has the cleverest concept of the winter season (if not the sharpest execution) means that it’s merely a step from regular old “awesome” to “high-quality weapons-grade plutonium awesome”.

The comment about “sharp execution” up there made me think for a bit, and I want to clarify this a little bit. Spice and Wolf is certainly directed well (which, considering that the guy doing the direction is the same as the guy who directed Cosprayers, is not a mean feat) but it’s not directed well, if that makes sense. The strength, rather, as noted above, lies in the writing. I don’t mean this in a bad way. The direction is perfectly passable, but there’s not really anything that stands out for me on the direction front. The writing front, yes–it’s clearly catching the spirit of the original work, and the direction is doing an admirable job of bringing that out. It’s just not impressing me on the level of, say, true tears, which certainly isn’t a problem for me at all. It’s the kind of series that gets by on the strength of the writing, but we should be thankful that it’s directed competently, because poor direction would ruin this series, I think.

MORAL OF THE STORY: Direction good, writing also good.

MORAL OF THE STORY, PART THE SECOND: Please do not anger the Horo, she is likely to bite. Hard.

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Oh, Horo pranked us baaaaaad.

Damn and blast.

Why does Japan get all the fun thrillers? America would never think about putting in a wolf girl in their thrillers, let alone base their thrillers around medieval economics. But I talked about that last time.

Horo is now much more than a sass machine who happens to be a wolf goddess. It’s a shame this series is only going to be a season long, because, as that pranked moment up there demonstrates, Lawrence (I keep wanting to spell it Laurence, damn you, Naomi Novik…) is developing a certain kind of affection for Horo. Did anyone not  see this coming? It does feel a bit forced upon, but I don’t really mind in this case–they were obviously destined to be a couple the moment they laid eyes on each other, so whatever.

I am somewhat confused by the economical nature of the plot structure, lamentably, but I’m used to being confused on plot elements from my somewhat eccentric reading habits, so it’s nothing new for me. I think they’re mostly confusing because I have difficulties with economics and similar maths, and (while this isn’t exactly as dense as Adam Smith in terms of economic theory) it’s still somewhat hard to follow. However, it’s still admirable that they managed to make economics thrilling and exciting and full of fast paced chase scenes.

And, actually, the thriller elements did seem to be a bit breaking of convention. It’s been my experience in thriller-type things that, when someone is kidnapped by the Bad People and all the other protagonists are getting together a Party to go Rescue Them, normally everyone supports them.  Not here. “No, sorry, Lawrence, we’re too interested in our profit to save Horo.” Of course, it looks like they might help him after all, but I was expecting “Gosh, Lawrence, that’s terrible, let’s send a rescue party out to find her immediately!” because I rarely do the guessing-before-it-happens thing. I think I don’t do that because I get wrapped up in the narrative rather than being a passive, neutral observer, which is what you’re supposed to do when you’re watching something thrilling and exciting, because if you’re just sitting there as a neutral observer you’re just going to hate it.  And people need to hate things less. It’s not healthy for the blood pressure.


NOTICE SHAMELESSLY STOLEN FROM G.K. CHESTERTON

I cannot understand those that take anime seriously, but I can love them, and I do. Out of my love I warn them to keep clear of this blog.

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