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Old 09-05-2018, 11:47 PM   #376
McSweeney
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Sorry, I got busy and I'm behind, but I did watch episode 08. I have my own multi-level marketing story to tell:

Something like five years ago, I spotted a dude doing bench press in the gym (of course, he claimed that he used to be bench 100 more pounds 5 years ago. That should have been the first red flag right there) and then he started talking about how he was working hard at building his "business," asked me if I was happy with my job ("eh not really") and said that he had a really good business opportunity for me. Curious, I asked him what it was, but he was extremely vague and just kept talking about how he's continuing to build his "business" and went on and on about how his "mentor" made $15,000 a month doing the same thing. I kept asking him what it was but he REFUSED to tell me and remained vague. Instead, he gave me a small book and told me that if I was interested in the business opportunity, I should read it and then meet him at a coffee shop in a couple days. I read the book, and it was a Robert Kiyosaki book talking about how people who work wage jobs are sheep, and you're reading this book because you're NOT a sheep, etc. etc. It then moved on to talk about how one example of how you can make tons of money is if you use your genius marketing skills to convince 10 people to buy products off you, then each of them in turn will find 10 people to buy products, and each of them will find 10 more people, and on and on it goes, and you'll get a cut from ALL those hundreds of saplings that you planted!

Since the book only appeared to give that as one example of making money, and that didn't appear to be the whole point of the book, I still wasn't connecting the dots and didn't know what the guy was getting at by giving me this book. To be honest, I thought that he might be a drug dealer and that's the reason why he was being vague and mysterious lol. At the time, I was watching Breaking Bad and the idea of being a drug dealer was kinda romantic to me, and I thought hmmm maybe I should try this out!

I met with the guy at the coffee shop and I demanded that he give it to me straight WHAT exactly the business opportunity was. I "joked" that I was wondering if he was asking me to become a drug dealer because he was so vague. He laughed and said no, but if I want to find out what the business opportunity is, I need to meet him at this big gathering that's going to take place in a conference room downtown. Dress semi-formal. Disappointed that I wasn't going to become the next meth kingpin, I was like: "Errrr, okay. Maybe I'll meet you there?" and went home. That's when I realized that this was probably some scam bullshit. I happened to notice that he was wearing a shirt that said "Nutri[something, I forget what the company name was exactly]." I Googled the name and found out they were a "multi level marketing company" (I had never heard of the term before), did some research on what it was, and that's when I finally realized it was some stupid pyramid scheme.

I'm guessing that the reason why the guy refused to tell me what the "business opportunity" was was because he was trained to be vague with people he's trying to recruit so he can get them to attend that gathering he was talking about (probably resembled that guy giving the presentation in the Tonegawa episode), where all his guys could team up, rah rah to the target about how much money they're making and he can too, then pressure him to buy a bunch of products and sell them to all his friends and family.
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Old 09-11-2018, 06:05 PM   #377
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Up through episode 11, which really hit it out of the park.

I'm happy to see it doesn't feel like -another- Saul or Fear the Walking Dead.
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Old 09-11-2018, 06:47 PM   #378
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Tonegawa Episode 11:

Spoiler: show
This was easily the best filler we've had yet. Filler (in the sense that it didn't advance the main Kaiji-games plot any) ... but excellently entertaining. Roughly divided into 20-40-40 portion sizes, we'll take each story in turn.

Tonegawa, Hyoudou, & Tunnels: This was a cute little arc. Not much to write here; the enjoyment is in the experience watching it. lol @ the dropped signals and Hyoudou's escalation of reactions to each. lol @ the sincere, brief glimpse at life for many Japanese business executives and how utterly overworked they are.

Tonegawa & the Kansai Branch: This was another funny little story. I felt bad for everyone involved not named Kinezaki. One viewer questions how Kinezaki could fail so badly at reading the mood, but this scene works principally because it is so familiar to us from real life. I was surprised that the scene didn't end with Tonegawa firing Kinezaki, singling him out as the reason the Kansai branch is struggling. Indeed, it felt like Tonegawa left Osaka without having properly solved the branch's problems. (Yes, they were all working on time management, but still .... =\)

The Fashion Boom: It was interesting to see a Vs. story between our two most developed suits, Yamazaki and Saemon-Saburou. And it was satisfying to watch Yamazaki come out on top. Hooray for loyalty! Hooray for smartassery losing in the end! A lot of fans have pointed out that this is where we finally get to see Saemon-Saburou fail at something. But man! THAT BLACKFACE! ^^;; Only in Japan!

I really enjoyed the final bit of this scene, with Tonegawa giving the men fashion advice suited to the business world elite. The references to Harajuku and Marunouchi were especially nice. Harajuku is known as one of Japan's fashion capitals, but it's also known as being incredibly popular with the young crowd. Teens and adults in their 20s. Meanwhile, Marunouchi is famous for being Tokyo's economic center. It's a no-bullshit place where all the banks and major corporations are headquartered. So it just makes perfect sense to say, "Harajuku? No! You want Marunouchi," and have Tonegawa lead the way to a $10,000-per-suit Men's Warehouse in Tokyo's banking district. I dunno. I'm having trouble putting into words all the little nice things I liked about this scene, but there were many and they so intricately worked together. I liked it a lot.
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Old 09-24-2018, 07:22 AM   #379
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Tonegawa Episode 12:

Spoiler: show
Hoooooooooooooly shit. Best episode yet? Hard to say, but maybe. Best filler yet? Absolutely. Back-to-back excellent fillers we've been having.

This episode defines what it is to be a "dark comedy." The episode is frighteningly dark with how they take this sweet old man off the street and Clockwork Orange him into a broken Hyoudou mimic. Yet at the same time, it is both hilarious throughout and downright heartwarming at the end when the episode takes on the new angle of a boy (Yamazaki) and his dog (Masayan) who is abandoned against his owner's wishes yet manages to make his way home. Like ... I don't even know what to say about this episode. How can I be happy that they ruined a woman's husband(?) like this? He went from being a friendly, mentally-stable Green Peace type to becoming an insane asylum patient ... But at the same time, I'm happy for Yamazaki that he got to keep his "dog". ^^;;

It's also supremely interesting for the main Kaiji canon if they do indeed decide to go with Tonegawa as official canon. So far, we'll assume not. But if they do, then we would then have in our Kaiji canon an official body double of Hyoudou's who looks just like him, lacks Hyoudou's mental acuity, and somewhere deep down inside (if they can dredge it up past all the wreckage ) a good heart. And to top it all off, Hyoudou doesn't even know of Masayan's existence. Would be really, really crazy to see if Masayan played into the Kaiji endgame wherein they dethrone Kazutaka Hyoudou, replace him with Masayan without telling anyone else in the company, and then from the top down Masayan helps them to deconstruct Hyoudou's criminal empire and becomes the true "Love Emperor".

... Oooooooooooor he could just be a comically crazy man who looks just like Hyoudou.

I think I would be so much less conflicted on this episode if Masayan had been some random homeless person they picked up off the street and if he had already been somewhat crazy / deranged. Then, I think, I wouldn't feel quite as bad. But here, they took a mentally-sound man and fucked his brain up ... And they took a man who lived in a warm, happy world and brought him to a dungeon where he has to burn his fingers on sizzling-hot steaks every day. I dunno, man. It's just ... I don't do dark comedy, but for those who do this episode will be one of the greatest anime episodes in years. That's all I can say.
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Old 10-04-2018, 03:22 AM   #380
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Tonegawa Episode 13:

Spoiler: show
This was a pretty fucking solid episode. Don't know that I'd call it my favorite or the best or anything like that, but it's easily in the top cut. Well-paced, well-written, entertaining from start to finish ... Characteristic of a Tonegawa episode, I was captivated.

Surprised by the author's decision to keep the gag going of having the suits be physically inside the boxes counting the cards manually. I thought for sure that was just going to be a temporary thing for the trial run. But it looks like the gag was too good, too beloved by both the author and fans for him to part with it. Me personally, I'm torn on it. I dislike its implications for canon Kaiji -- it makes Teiai out to be too incompetent -- but I do like it for how otherwise delightful it is.

Equally surprised, though I shouldn't be, that Restricted RPS is a multi-time thing. I was thinking that it was a one-off and that Kaiji was a part of its maiden and only voyage. But come to think of it, it's true: I haven't seen Kaiji in a long time, but they do state that some of the debtors (Funai included?) are repeat attendees, don't they?

Tonegawa-Yamazaki has been a wonderful relationship to watch unfold. I really hope that if anything from this series works its way into the Kaiji canon, and if Tonegawa should ever come back up again in the plot, it's Yamazaki.
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Old 10-08-2018, 12:50 AM   #381
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This series wasn't strong enough on its own to sustain my interest (and also hurt that they replaced Tonegawa's CV) but I might pick it up again given this is a remarkable anime season with a lot of watchable titles.

That said, do we add this one to the list?

Ichinichi Gaishutsuroku Hanchou

Quote:
Originally Posted by Livechart.me
A humorous spin-off of "Tobaku Hakairoku Kaiji" detailing how foreman Ootsuki spends his day trips to the surface.
Foreman Ootsuki! That fat fudge who Kaiji beat in the first arc of season 2. He gets his own spinoff?!

Airing October 10!!
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Old 10-08-2018, 06:42 AM   #382
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Tonegawa, I can watch. The asshole who led the bad guys during the chinchiron arc, I cannot watch. I don't understand how or why someone would even want to give him his own spin-off. I ... will have to give a hard pass to that one for now. Someone will have to convince me it's worth the pick-up later if I'm to ever watch it.

What's next? An Andou spin-off?
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Old 10-12-2018, 03:34 PM   #383
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Tonegawa Episode 14:

Spoiler: show
What is there to say? The episode was decently enough entertaining, but:
  • there's no way I'd watch a 13-episode show of this
  • I cannot fathom how this has managed to become a multi-volume manga
  • the Ootsuki spin-off, much like the Tonegawa spin-off, delights in reminding us that everyone is human and that unlike in the cartoons even the worst of people typically have positive human attributes to which we can relate
Ootsuki is still a scumbag rotten bastard, but the second half of this episode well illustrates his nicer side with the omelette fried rice and all that's attached to it.

That stated, holy fucking shit at how he (in a lot of people's opinions, I'm sure) utterly, utterly wastes the first half of his day passes. I would be so pissed if I were one of the underground miners and I found out that this was how he was spending them. Sure, he's free to spend his day passes as he sees fit, make no mistake about that! But still! What a sad, sorry waste to spend hours picking the lint off of your socks! Or to sleep away -- not lie down and enjoy the sights and sounds and smells, but to sleep away! -- eight hours on a hard, uncomfortable grassy knoll! You might as well sleep underground! What the hell's wrong with you, man!? I think this gets back to and well illustrates Ootsuki's psychopathy: how he enjoys lording over others. Even if no one is there to witness it (and even that's not true, and Ootsuki knows it: even he knows the suits are watching), Ootsuki derives pleasure from the knowledge that he is so "wealthy" relative to the other miners that he can piss away as meaningless the surface hours that others would fight tooth and nail to attain. Assuredly, it makes him feel like a king, that he can while away the surface hours picking his nose or taking a nap! But still, man. Still. It's pretty fucked up how he's wasting these hours when they could be used by the miners to rendezvous with loved ones, to conduct business, to enjoy things not discoverable underground ... literally anything else besides what Ootsuki did the first 12-18 hours he was there.

His first lunch on the surface seemed like a very Japanese sketch. Even I had to kind of stretch the limits of my understanding of Japanese culture to appreciate just what a dick move Ootsuki's behavior was. I really didn't feel like it deserved an entire half of an episode. Really? You're really that bothered, random suit dude, that Ootsuki can drink beer midday but you can't?

The second sketch seemed a whole lot more human-relatable. A shared experience just about all of us have had. Whether that's revisiting an old haunt (check), whether it's being presented with an unexpected option after you had your mind set on something else (check), whether it's unintentionally going with that new and untested option because you open your mouth and your curiosity takes over (check), whether it's rationalizing with yourself that things won't be so bad (check), whether it's things being worse than you imagined (check), whether it's things being better than you first imagined and certainly better than you most recently though (check), and of course -- last but not least -- whether that's somebody remembering you who you didn't think would remember you and them giving you a little something special (check ).

But like ... okay, you showed us two different little side stories of what Ootsuki likes to do when he goes to the surface. I really don't think I'm much interested in seeing more. As sympathetic as you may try to make him -- damn you and showing us hippie musician Ootsuki! :shakefist: -- at the end of the day he's a piece of shit and I really don't want to watch more of his story of how he enjoys his days on the surface that he obtains by cheating and ruining the lives of others.

Hopefully this was a one-off and it's back to business as usual next week for Tonegawa. I'd still give the episode a grumble grumble 7/10. I just don't want to see any more, is all.
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