Unexplained Title Is Unexplained: Akashic Records of Bastard Magic Instructor Season Finale

Alrighty then. My first season finale article for the Spring 2017 season is this fething mess, which started so absolutely awful, then became really great, then just fell short. I’d also like to preface this with the fact that I’m only watching but plan on giving this show a further shot by reading the light novels. If you read my First Impressions of the show, you saw that I coined it as a great example of a 3 (really 2) episode test. The action and fighting was pretty damn great and I overall enjoyed the music but the plot just dropped off the interesting/mysterious spectrum and it lost the comedic charm it had in the beginning when they started to add “serious” plot and a slight title drop.

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Seriously, don’t expect more explination.

Where we left off was an interesting point, with the reveal of the queen and displaying of Glenn’s teaching skills in full force. He manages to gain the students’ trust, motivate them to come out on top, and even foil an evil plot revolving around curses and with some easy to see but still good subterfuge. Around the mid season mark however, the show shifts around like a drunk in a bumper car. It has the class visit an island research facility/resort and gives us our gratuitous little beach volleyball scenes but suddenly drops some emotions and backstory for Re=L. Now I love me some deadpan, especially when it makes sense plot wise and is executed well (looking at you Henneko) but this is not proper execution at all. This was suddenly throwing in that Re=L is emotionally stunted/unstable (the translation was actually kinda bad and made her sound more mentally retarded than the actual dialogue) and then has her betray Glenn, Sisti, and Rumia almost on the fly at the word of her “brother.” The almost randomness of this with little to no build up makes this seem forced and it is this unfortunate pacing that we suffer through for the second half of this otherwise great show.

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Anyway,  “betrayal” aside, Glenn manages to reveal that the big bads (a.k.a. Researchers of the Divine Wisdom, a.k.a. enemies so bland I had to google what they were called again) are obsessed with this nifty thing called “Project Revive Life.” Essentially through a rushed process we are informed that Re=L (a combination of “Re” from Revive and the L from Life) is a byproduct/prototype that was rescued by Glenn when her “brother” (creator) was killed by the baddies. The bad guy researcher then proceeds to monologue as per tradition then summon in 3 “complete” versions of Re=L. They are subsequently curbstomped by the Re=L deal.

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After this we are introduced to Duke Douchey McDouchington, Leos Kleitos. Supposedly another instructor/childhood friend who is in love with Sisti and yet is a complete asshat who cares not for her true feelings/dreams. When he basically says “your dreams are meaningless, become my wife,” Glenn literally jumps out from the bushes to tell Leos promptly where to stick his opinions. Hint: Up Leos’ own ass. This leads to a duel being declared in traditional glove throwing fashion, and its unfortunately revealed instead of an awesome ass kicking, we get a modified mock mage battle, with the classes of Leos and Glenn being the armies, and their teachers as their respective commanders. Through the (admittedly unfair) guerrilla tactics of Glenn, his class holds their own despite being outgunned, outmanned, and outnumbered they are by no means outplanned. Also having Re=L roaming around was really unfair.

Ok, so again, the action is pretty good overall in the show but God Emperor help me, the plot just likes to jump sharks, leave holes, and have the irregular pacing of a marathon runner with a nervous tick in his legs. Glenn is challenged to a followup 1v1 duel and is then surprisingly beat down. After this we see Leos be a dick and are introduced to more vague references to the bad guy beyond the Researchers of the Forgettable Name and “Sara” a.k.a. the bitch Sistine is proxying for in Glenn’s eyes. Sistine is subsequently blackmailed into marrying Leos after Glenn’s defeat and after saying “I do” during the wedding later on, Glenn runs in and smoke bombs the ceremony, then runs off with the bride. Now I personally hate Leos but the timing on even THIS is awful. We are then surprise introduced to Angel Dust (which is only slightly referenced to be related to the death of Sara) and its affects, specifically people become super agile murderzombies. All this is done in the span of like 5 minutes. It’s at this point the real bad guy is revealed and out of all the complaints I have, even the sheer randomness of his reveal is that he has the STUPIDEST fething gloves I’ve ever seen. Should I see someone with these gloves I will punch them in the face with zero hesitation.

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LOOK AT HOW STUPID THESE THINGS ARE!

Anyway, though some teamwork, Sistine has a crisis of faith sort of thing where she doubts the sanity/humanity of Glenn, runs off, finds it again, and comes back just in time to save Glenn and assist as they defeat not-Leos Jatice (who runs off and implies along with the dramatic music that Sistine is in danger but is effectively just tired). Again, all in the span of like 5 minutes. Additional to this, there is once again a casual title drop with no real context. To sum up my thoughts (because seriously the show basically ends there with little more than a few more vague references and feel good moments) I enjoy the audio and a vast majority of the animation is really well done with only a few short cuts taken, but all in all the action is amazing. I understand from some online comments that the light novels will fill holes and as such I’m willing to keep an open mind should Season 2 come out, and to even go read the light novels but I’m afraid with the terrible pacing at the end this dropped from a top choice for the season to a mediocre time sink that I could recommend to anyone but not going to recommend to everyone. Anyway, leave a like or comment if you agreed/disagreed/are a potato otherwise you’ll get punched so hard you are crucified.

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