The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya - Episode 19 Review

Episode 19, "Endless Eight (Part 4)"


Synopsis: The exact same fucking thing that happened last episode, with different angles. (!!!)


I don't really know what to say at this point. Should I be angry? I was, at first. I was pretty pissed that Kyoto Animation really not only continued a storyline that should have been wrapped up in a single episode, two at the most, yet again. I mean, really, four episodes, and it's still not over. This is either the best trolling ever, or these folks are being held hostage and are trying to call for help. Having watched this a second time, I no longer feel this anger.

I feel pity and sadness now. Pity, because clearly the production company isn't trolling us, they're not trying to make us angry. I now believe they truly, geniunely believe this is clever, this is really smart, the real intelligent fans will understand and appreciate this. They're trying to be avante garde here. It's not working out, and I'm not sure they know it. It's really sort of sad, because this show is clearly the only worthwhile KyoAni production ever produced, and they're sinking it.

Haruhi isn't meant to be that out there. I mean, it's a clever show that lampoons "moé" trends and classic school story tropes, with a science fiction twist. But it's not some expressionist painting, nor is it a postmodern film. It's a cartoon about a cynical high school boy who finds himself in extraordinary circumstances. Endless Eight was a single-chapter-size short story in one of the Haruhi books, and it didn't even go beyond a single cycle. If the original author, Nagiru Tanigawa, didn't see fit to go beyond that, why should KyoAni? Stop it, it's not working out.

Not to mention, for some reason, the art style and animation seems to be changing. It now looks more like KyoAni's "hit" (see: shit) program K-On! than it does SHnY. This started last episode. At first I refused to believe it, but when I rewatched the past couple of episodes, it became pretty clear. It's pretty sad, too, because that other show has weird, disfigured character designs that resemble this show's old ones, but are off-kilter, and now this show is starting to resemble that one. They need to get back the folks who did the work for the first three episodes of this season, especially the second "Endless Eight" episode.

Will this story end in the next episode? Maybe. Maybe not. I'm starting to doubt whether this season is salvagable or not.

Overall Score:

1 out of 5

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