Posted by: Leek | February 20, 2017

Little Girl Anime Power Rankings Season 3 – Week 24

I actually put it up before the week’s episode of PriPara aired. See? I can still do it if I put my mind to it.

How did Non sneak a rabbit into PriPara anyway?

I mean, Pepper did sneak her surrogate mother in, so I guess a rabbit is nothing to get too worried about.

Previous Standings

1) Kirakira Precure A La Mode – 233 Points
2) Rilu Rilu Fairilu – 171 Points
3) Aikatsu Stars! – 168 Points
4) PriPara – 138 Points

Fairilu continues to wiggle just out of Aikatsu’s reach.

Weekly Point Distribution

1) Rilu Rilu Fairilu – +9 Points
2) Aikatsu Stars! – +6 Points
3) Kirakira Precure A La Mode – +3 Points
4) PriPara – +1 Point

A Word From the Big Man
Not as great as last week, but there was definitely some highlights in every show once again.

Not exactly a combination with the most backbone.

I don’t think this episode of Precure captivated me as much as last week, but it still hasn’t deviated from the bright visuals and tone it started out with. So I can definitely give it credit for consistency right now, if nothing else. I honestly wish I had something particularly special to say about Precure this week, but it’s in third place for a reason. It wasn’t a bad episode, but it did nothing to really stand out from the crowd. Character intro episodes (in Precure particularly) will never be stunning outside of getting to see a new transformation, and that is really how you summarize this episode.

I didn’t really bring it up last week because Himari went along rather willingly with Ichika, but I kind of wish at least one of the Precure members had some kind of personal relationship with Ichika. Both episodes so far have been Ichika butting into someone’s personal life, and it’s kind of annoying. Ichika is like that person you partner up with once in Chem lab just to get through the day and then happen to run into once again when grabbing a morning coffee. No, you don’t remember them at all, but they think it’s fate you ran into each other again. And before you know it they’re prying for your phone number and want to hang out like you spent a lifetime together. It was a one time thing to get through a class, don’t pretend like we went to war together.

Working hard on that idol image.

After weeks of asking for them to stop doing awkward cutoffs and not leaving plot after a single episode, Fairilu finally followed through this week. Lip didn’t just go back to being normal Lip, and we actually got a small reminder at the beginning of what happened. That’s all you really need to do for the sake of the kids Fairilu. If you’re afraid they won’t remember, then it just takes a short little reminder before the episode starts.

Fairilu has slipped up a lot trying to make what it wants to do work, and I feel like they finally got on the right track this week. What’s kind of funny is that while the writing was on track, the visuals wandered horrendously far off of it. But if I really had to pick which one for them to get right, then I would want the writing team to be more on point than Studio Deen. We all know I don’t have that high of standards for them anyway.

I honestly just paused on this frame and thought it was cute.

I really give credit for Stars combining Rola and Mahiru’s special glitter episode into one. Both are characters who have had ample development over the length of the season, and they really don’t need that much going into the finale. I don’t really know how well they have the rest of the season planned up until April, but I appreciate this episode to prevent things from becoming incredibly draggy. After so many years of watching Precure go down the line of character episodes (even the original Aikatsu fell back on it from time to time), it is nice to see that staff cut it short for once. Just don’t do episodes for them a little down the line or I’ll have to bite off my tongue.

Honestly, the episode was enjoyable because it further broke up the main four in a way they haven’t before. A good chunk of Stars (including the entirety of it’s movie) has been about Yume and Rola’s relationship, but the two are very much like water and oil in terms of ability. It was nice to see the two thoroughbred idols from prestigious families combine forces as a bit of a change of pace. I actually kind of wish they had done this mixing and matching earlier in the season, because it would have done a really good job of highlighting the character differences a little earlier. But it’s better late than never.

And while she is finally getting another solo episode of her own next week, I am really curious of what will happen to Ako next season. She does get regularly paired with Yume, but otherwise she’s stuck by lonesome (to the point of it becoming a recurring gag now). I really don’t see her getting much more spotlight than what we’ve seen from the current season, so I guess she’ll end up piggybacking on a lot of the other characters for proper screen time. I just get the feeling that she’s going to be permanently forced to exist as comic relief.

People wonder why I like Hibiki as a character.

Here’s the thing. Working the holidays into a story episode is always worth extra points. It’s far from necessary, but it can add power to an episode given the situation. But even if it can add extra points, it’s not like an extra credit question. If you fail to execute it properly, then it just makes you look bad. PriPara has been forced to do this with both Christmas last year and Valentine’s this year. And both were situations where they could have honestly taken a break from story for or just left out the holiday scenes. It was less evident during Christmas, but this episode really suffered from some additional “Valentine’s Day scenes” that really just made it tank.

Would it have been that much a better episode without them? No. But piling on extra negatives isn’t exactly a smart choice when you’re already turning out average episodes. The thing is, a lot of this arc as a whole was really building up the rivalry between Lala and Non, especially as we transitioned to the final section of the arc. So you’d think that this would be the final showdown as opposed to trying to recycle the old rivalry between the two oldest trios (which has honestly never been a strong rivalry). But no, Non was actually just the first stepping stone in Lala’s red carpet to high status.

All the groups are working towards the same objective anyway, so saving this rivalry for the final stage would have just been an all around larger impact. But PriPara has always suffered from forcing characters into relevancy when they really don’t need to. And this episode is just a real wet blanket after everything they did with Non Sugar this season.

Wrap-Up
Two (potentially three) shows are really building up to a finale right now and very likely to climax at the same time. So it will be interesting to watch them closely over the next coming weeks and see who can stick the best landing.

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