Marth's Anime Blog


Little Busters Refrain Episode 11: Time for goodbye


Okay, everyone. Pack it up. We're done here. What a nice bittersweet ending, right? We can all accept this as an ending to this series, right? Sigh...if only it were that simple. Something that really bugged me this episode was that while Riki was having these emotional goodbyes with his friends, Rin was just standing there with a blank look on her face. She seemed to notice Kengo's disappearance, but there's no real explanation for her lack of reaction.

Well, I suppose there would be general outrage if the show didn't end with a perfect happy ending. Sigh...I guess I'll have to make it through somehow. If only I could stop the show here. I think the only problem would be that Riki never really had a chance to say goodbye to the other characters. Also, Rin doesn't seem to have changed much.



  • feal87

    Dec. 19, 2013, 7:43 a.m.

    Actually next episode will be even more suffering than this one. shivers

    Reply

    marthaurion

    Dec. 19, 2013, 7:47 a.m.

    ...eh?

    Reply

    feal87

    Dec. 19, 2013, 7:54 a.m.

    Yep, more drama...

    Reply

    marthaurion

    Dec. 19, 2013, 7:57 a.m.

    but I thought there weren't many episodes left...how...

    Reply

    feal87

    Dec. 19, 2013, 8:16 a.m.

    Two episodes left right? ...and the cat overlords are still hidden...shivers

    Reply

    marthaurion

    Dec. 19, 2013, 8:23 a.m.

    what? they've been staring us in the face the whole time

    Reply

  • Andmeuths

    Dec. 19, 2013, 8:04 a.m.

    I notice that you have Tenshi from Angel Beats on your banner, which is very fitting considering how the premise of Angel Beats attempted to develop and expand from the Little Busters premise - that of the dream world of dying souls. AB failed unfortunately -it didn't have the number of episodes needed (and I think it needed twice the episodes Little Busters received to pull off it's even more ambitious premise off).

    Here's an interesting thing about Little Busters. If you think of it as a spiritual predecessor to Angel Beats, you aren't wrong. The whole Parting of the Boys scene is actually very reminiscent of the Graduation of the SSS scene at the end of Angel Beats- only the graduation involved both sexes, while the girls seem to be terribly short changed in Little Busters.

    Little Busters was actually written before Angel Beats, but I think the irony is that we the English Speaking anime audience is far more likely to have watched Angel Beats. And in many ways Angel Beats took the concept of Little Busters, and tried taking it even further, by drawing dead souls from multiple tragedies, and openly revealing the dream-like nature of the world it takes place in right from the get-go. The good thing is that LB got 39 episodes -imagine how terrible it would be if LB suffered the same fate of Angel Beats, and was given a mere 13 instead.

    As for the girls, don't worry. We'll get Rin's perspective next episode. Or at least, I don't think JC Staff would be stupid enough to axe out Rin's perspective in episode 12, because that would wreck BD sales for the last volume of Refrain .

    I fear though, the ending of LB is going to draw a very loud shitstorm, and the goodwill of Episode 11 is going to evaporate very quickly (and possibly even 12, if 12 is well done, and 12 convinces the audience that nothing but a happy ending is too cruel, even if another DEM is needed for a happy ending). Expect to hear Deus Ex Machina , Ass Pull ending, and it should have ended at Episode 11 or 12 outcries from outraged Anime Only viewers.

    And since this is Key, you are right, it's going to be a happy, ludicrously happy ending, I wouldn't be surprised if we get a Beach Episode OVA out of it, that's how happy it is - and I'm not kidding, there's a drama CD that is prime OVA material, and which the inevitable OVA Beach Episode would be based, and rare for anime, actually makes perfect sense, that is, if you accept the how the Happy ending came to be to begin with.

    Also, the animators once claimed they would go as far as adapting Kud Wafter - and considering how popular Kud is, I wouldn't be surprised if it's a whole One cour, or even two cour series.

    Considering that the Kud route was very well adapted (Kurugaya route still beats it though) , and they actually named the female Dorm Student Manager (who, as I recalled, didn't actually get a name or even a voice in the VN, and played a very big role in Kud Wafter), Kud Wafer is quite likely. Unless of course, funding isn't available, but given how crazily popular Kud is in Japan, I don't think the prospect of sales is an issue. I doubt we'd heard the last of Little Busters.

    Reply

    marthaurion

    Dec. 19, 2013, 8:22 a.m.

    I think Angel Beats is an interesting case because I really did enjoy the ending and the other episodes were fine and entertaining. It's true that I had the sense that it was too short at the end, but I don't really know enough about the original content on which it's based to really feel a sense that I was missing something.

    As for Little Busters, if I wasn't worried for episode 12 already, I'm even worse off now. I think I'll be okay, though, because I was expecting that episode to be pretty cringe already. We'll just have to see. Unfortunately, I have a tendency to reject most endings that I deem "too perfect", so I'm sure I'll have trouble no matter what they do. I don't know...I've always just enjoyed bittersweet endings because they don't seem as meaningless as the perfect happy ending.

    Reply

    Andmeuths

    Dec. 19, 2013, 10:10 a.m.

    Angel Beats was completely anime original as a work. It just bit off too much in some of the arcs , and it showed in the ending. The problem at the very ending was that the whole cast simply... had their issues magically resolved just like that. Almost as if the writers realized they were out of time, but couldn't simply leave any of the cast in that world. It is just speculation, but I suspect that there was more planned for each of the characters there - there just was too many for a 13 episode series with it's kind of premise.

    I really liked Angel Beats, I think the first episodes up to the first disappearance easily tops both early Little Busters and Clannad. And Yui's disappearance was another high point in AB's writing, which should have been given 2-3 episodes, not 1. Really, AB's main problem was very poor pacing (I began to dislike it around the Naoe arc, because it was very badly done, and pacing was the culprit there) and a cast too large for the length of time accorded to AB. You are right - it was too short in the end - and that was the whole problem with AB. The last episode was good though - in part, because there isn't that gender segregation in AB's graduation that made the parting an All Boys affair.

    There wasn't time to build the characters adequately - if Little Busters barely made it with 36 episodes with a far tighter cast, AB couldn't have done it with 13, and AB had a larger cast, had to work with a premise even bigger than LB, and had to pull off Refrain episode 11 again and again and again. This is really what AB was : imagine what happens if the scenario described in Little Busters, with Komari's "8 Dwarfs story" had each Dwarf that disappeared replaced by another, each with their own unique regret. And all those Dwarfs knew they were in the dream.

    Just to indicate how much more time needs to be devoted for such a premise to work- they aren't releasing the AB VN adaptation in one single VN, but in a series of VNs. The whole concept of AB is very similar to LB, it's just that AB is even more ambitious - I think Maeda really took alot of elements from LB (and his previous works) - but after episode 11 of LB Refrain, it should rather obvious where elements of AB such as the disappearance was based out on.

    As for Little Busters Episode 12 isn't the big problem , I think - at least the first half. They haven't adapted Episode Rin yet, but if you hate Komari, you'd probably won't like Episode Rin - if you are fine with her, it should be manageable, and even good. Personally, I don't find any of Komari's dialogue or characterization problematic - I actually like her sans that voice (urgh, nails on chalkboard), it's her terrible voice acting that kills that character for me. It's episode 13 you should dread, and possibly the second half of 12, depending on what JC Staff does.

    And for Little Busters Ex, I think it depends. Yes, some routes end with a happy ending, some don't. You have to keep in mind though that most of Ex, perhaps all of Ex utilizes the "Secret of the World", which is why they can't be in the main series.

    Reply

    marthaurion

    Dec. 19, 2013, 10:22 a.m.

    I'd say Angel Beats was an unfortunate series, but what can you really do?

    Oh dear, I might be in trouble. I've said from the beginning that Komari is my least favorite character. Well, this will be somewhat troublesome, but I knew what I was getting into when I started watching this show.

    I don't know whether I want to invest into Little Busters EX. We'll see.

    Reply

    Andmeuths

    Dec. 19, 2013, 12:58 p.m.

    Well, Angel Beats apparently is going to be retold in a series of VNs. Hopefully, it translates into an anime remake, that would prove as good as the second Kanon remake.

    Komari as the concept, and Komari in her plot role in Refrain wasn't bad, IMO - it's actually quite interesting. The perpetual optimist of the group, and the one who does more than anyone else to bring Rin out of her shell and get Rin into that group of girls that Riki gathered. It's just badly executed, and her route was both rubbish, and I think confirmed the worse fears of those who were dismayed at JC Staff animating Little Busters.

    I think the moment they opted for linearity was the moment they screwed the adaptation over, because the pantomime of linearity really compromised alot of the Pre-refrain material, that was inherently meant to be non-linear. I notice that problems happens alot, when Non-linear plots are made to conform to a Linear adaptation.

    Little Busters Ex covers Kanata, Sasami and another girl, Saya's routes. For some reason, I've heard Saya is actually crazily popular, on par with Kurugaya. There's of course no translation, but what I've heard of Saya's route reminds me a little bit of Angel Beats - I really think Maeda may have tested some concepts that he wanted to try out in later works, with Saya's route (Ie: if you know you are in a dream where you can't die, death takes a very different meaning altogether).

    Kanata is the mirror image of Haruka's route, telling Kanata's side of the story.(And Haruka's bad ends were some of the most disturbing (it includes Haruka killing herself), and if you add two and two together, you realize that if Kanata really was in the Dream world, then Kyousuke was really being an ass to Kanata by putting Kanata and Haruka and Riki through bad end after bad end, but we won't see Haruka's bad end ever in anime and they were trying to redeem Kyousuke in episode 11 )

    I can't say much about Sasami, other than what I know of it indicates that it's the most blatantly magical route in the whole of Little Busters.

    Reply

    marthaurion

    Dec. 19, 2013, 2:19 p.m.

    Ehh...I probably too distracted by Komari's voice and early actions to fairly judge, but that's just me. I think by the time she was useful to Rin, I was too far gone.

    If EX is just more routes, I probably wouldn't be too interested, to be completely honest. I think I've had enough. I might have been interested in Kanata's route if it weren't just a mirror of Haruka's, but such is life...

    Reply

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