Thanks to Simoun Fans (and potentially SimounProject, if this download finishes anytime this millennium), I have finally been watching Simoun further than episode 3 (as far as Doremi have been bothered to sub). Simoun had started late this season as one of my “yuri anime to watch” (but with uncomfortable “turning into man” themes). However, the yuri kind of subsided in Episodes 2 and 3, leaving me wondering if there was going to be any kind of storyline *horrified gasp* to fill the gap.

After watching episodes 4-8, I was quite satisfied with the way the series was turning out, but also rather confused at the angle they were taking. The girls’ storylines advance a bit further and you see into the backgrounds of a few of them, though the others remain rather anonymous and I tend to forget their names. (Well, they did do a name recap in episode 8 for my benefit ^_^). Aeru finally gets to be Neville’s pair and Neville finally gets out of her emo dustbin so she can start killing people again.

A semi high point was short incidence of potential yurirape in episode 7 with Paried and the meganekko-with-a-crap-seiyuu-that-I-can’t-remember-the-name-of (/me ANN’s it) – Ah, Kaimu. Yeah, she’s one of the non-descript ones with no personality or background. Anyway, that scene was potentially good. But then Paried remembered something liked how she raped a girl in the past and then the girl didn’t like her any more and stopped. Oh well, the meganekko wasn’t hot anyway.

We also get the two “token extra characters” in episode 8 – Mamiina and the other one….err…Yun I think. The scene where Mamiina tries to yurirape Neville and fails because Aeru abseils through Neville’s window is probably the best scene in all 4 episodes. And while Mamiina is fail, Yun is traipsing all around the ship saying “OMG I hate war! Emoemoemo!” and fast becoming the least likeable character since Neville got out of her emo slump. She does seem to have low standards, though. Maybe she’s trying to become tsundere but failing. If so, she is MIGHTY FAIL.

Overall, I think the entire series is held up by Aeru, who is awesome, and Limone, who is stoic loli. Aeru gets more and more awesome a character through the series, mainly because she isn’t thinking of turning into a man and she isn’t weighed down by all the religoius emo nonsense that all the others are burdened by. Also, she’s an atheist , so that improves her in my books. Although she hasn’t tried to yurirape anyone yet, she did do a :3 when abseiling in through a window, so I’ll let that one go.

My main beef with the series is that it seems to touch on some really rather sensitive subjects in the world at the moment (namely religion and holy war) and then not really try to tackle them. Since the basic premise is that there are a lot of lands with different religions (some of which may have historically been the same) that are at war with this one particular religion, since it holds all the treasure (the helical motors).

And therefore thousands and thousands of soldiers from these lands get killed in seconds in each episode by very small numbers of ships for no particular reason other than that the land is really selfish and refuses to give any of the helical motors away. Also, in episode 8, I thought the suicide bombing was very very topical and was not entirely sure that it was relevant to the storyline.

i hope that in some further episode we find out exactly why the land with all the technology is so selfish (unlike in Mai Otome, where you never really find out why Garderobe was hiding all the technology), and there is a “I wonder if the side I’m fighting for is the right side” exposition to the girls. If it continues with the “My religion is best and owns all your religionsses” angle, I may have to rant a lot more in the next update.

Basically, Aeru owns everyone. The end.

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Reading “Anime on my mind” this week, it came to my attention that a second shamelessly yuri anime was being shown this season: Simoun, so I downloaded the Doremi fansubs and watched the first few episodes…here’s what I thought – Not only do the characters fly around in things that look like Disc Doctors, all the ship designs and things look far too much like they were taken straight out of LAST EXILE. I mean, the Craftsmen’s nations ships, you can’t tell me they don’t look like vanships. And the Simouns look remarkably like those white thingys that Dio and Co. fly around in (sorry about my crap knowledge, EXILE fans)

But the similarity does stop there, thankfully. The entire thing is (rather shakily) based around a race that are born as women and choose their gender when they get to the age of 19, though they lose the ability to blow up hundreds of enemy ships at once while shouting stupid technique names like “SHARK REMERGION!”. And also, for some reason, being able to pilot one of the ships requires the 2 pilots to kiss beforehand, so changing gender results in a great reduction in creamy yuri goodness.

So you can see already that this anime is going to be filled with gallons and gallons of pseudo-lesbian tongue wrestling and shoujo ai relationships until one of the two goes to the spring, becomes a man and shafts the poor other girl senseless with his newly gained manhood (actually I think they didn’t film the last bit)

Despite this excellent premise, the Craftsman’s (I assume they’re all women too, so shouldn’t “Craftswomen’s” be more appropriate?) Nation seems to have little going for it, except having its ships and people blown up repeatedly by, like, 1 enemy craft and the wonderful voice of Mamiko Noto voicing someone we haven’t even met yet. If the anime doesn’t go into a bit more detail about them and we see both sides, it will be extremely disappointing. A bit of Romeo and Juliet cross-sides loving is due here I think…

 

So how does it compare to the other great yuri anime of this season – Strawberry Panic?(Or Full Yuri Panic! as I have otherwise named it)

Lets compare!

  1. Outrageously thinly veiled lesbian subtext Vs. Frankly pornographic amount of girl-girl tongue fencing

Vs.

 


Simoun obviously wins on the yuri-snogging count, but does it beat the cute one-sided longings of Tamao and Yaya-chan and the first girl-love of Hikari and Amane-sama? Especially episode 8 of FYP! when Tamao chased Nagisa round all episode to share an umbrella and Shizuma complained that her umbrella was too big…

Answer: Full Yuri Panic! WIN, 5 points! Although I do love the girl on girl action in Simoun, it lacks resultant storyline to back it up. For FYP! to spend an entire episode on the love shared beneath an umbrella is bold and pretty funny. And Yaya/Hikari is shaping up to be my favourite underdog pairing ever.

2. Cookie eating loli Vs. Slightly mad plush bear obsessed loli.

 


I have to admit, the loli with the plush bear in FYP! did scare me a bit…Isn’t Astraea only secondary school and above, meaning that she is at least 11 and still kookily weird for her age? *shivers* On the other hand, there’s nothing wrong with the loli in Simoun (Except that she’s possibly said one word in 2 episodes) Also, she has Ichijou Karen hair (of School Rumble fame).

Answer: Simoun WIN, 5 points! Stoic snacking loli beats scary bear confiding loli

3. Two best friends and a tsundere Vs. Emo girl, genki girl and rampant lesbian

Vs.

 


How does the Yaya-Hikari-Tsubomi triangle shape up to Neville the emo girl and her Pair Amuria(who is obviously rampantly gay) and the new girl Aeru who (thank god) chooses blowing things up over becoming a man. Obviously I am pre-biased to vote for the Yaya-Hikari-Tsubomi fiasco, since I am a massive Yaya fan, but since Simoun hasn’t had enough time to develop its storyline and since there has already been three comsummate kisses in their love triangle, they need some weight too…there’s still room for some rampant lesbian shower sex there too.

Answer: FYP! 3 points, Simoun, 2 points (for potential)

4. Bonus Points

 

Erii (Simoun) -2 points for becoming a man (NOT HOT)


Chikaru (FYP!) +2 points for being ULTRA DETECTIVE COSPLAY HAWT

 

FINAL RESULT: Full Yuri Panic!: 10 points, Simoun, 5 points

STRAWBERRY PANIC WIN!

Undoubtedly, at this early stage, Strawberry Panic provides far more yuri excitement than Simoun, for, although it does lack girls indulging in Sapphic desires around every corner; it does have Yaya-chan. And Yaya > all.

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PS. Damn I wish that I could do “Excerpts”, ‘cept this theme doesn’t support it and its the only one on WordPress.com that I actually like. Oh well, people will have to be stuck reading my whole articles until I actually bother to find some server space then ^_^