Posted on 31 January 2008 with categories: Monthly Summaries

We’ve now passed one third of the Winter-season. I must say that it’s been one of the best winter-seasons we’ve had in years. There are so many potentially awesome series, and there have been hardly any disappointments so far.

#31 (new) – H20 ~ Footprints in the Sand – (5/10) – I find it strange to think that this is one of the most blogged-series of the new winter-season. Are people expecting some kind of spectacular trainreck ending, just like with School Days, or was could there really come something good from the crappy first episode?
#30 (new) – Rosario to Vampire – (5,2/10) – A lot of people seem to believe that Gonzo ruined this series, but I’ve got enough reasons to think that the manga was bad in the first place. Gonzo just made it worse.
#29 (new) – They are my Noble Masters – (6,8/10) – Yes, it’s filled with harem-cliches, but it’s also one thing: it’s fun to watch. There’s nothing ground-breaking, but I’d choose to watch this series above Lucky Star at any time.
#28 (24) – Dragonaut The Resonance – (6,9/10) – Yes, the story for this series is as bad as ever. Still, I unfortunately have to admit that it did catch my interest, and I’m actually curious to find out what’s going to happen next.
#27 (new) – Minami-ke Okawari – (7/10) – Just like its predecessor, I just couldn’t get myself interested to watch beyond episode 1, so I dropped it.
#26 (new) – Hatenkou Yuugi – (7,2/10) – The only disappointment for this season. Alas, so many great things could have come from this series, but the storytelling feels dull and uninspired. The creators don’t even seem to care to try and let everything make sense, and the only thing that wasn’t screwed up by the creators seems to be the dialogue.
#25 (19) – Shugo Chara – (7,3/10) – 51 episodes is a terrific format, but you have to use it. There’s no use in putting up 26 filler-episodes to try and make it longer. Let’s hope for now that this series knows what it’s doing for its final quarter, but right now there’s a good chance that I’m going to drop this series and marathon it if it turns out to be good in the end.
#24 (20) – Bamboo Blade – (7,4/10) – Every time I have the urge to drop this series, it drags me back in. Bamboo Blade definitely didn’t catch my interest as much as I’d hoped to, and there are so many better series out there, but it’s moderately entertaining at least.
#23 (new) – Noramimi – (7,6/10) – So, here I am as probably the only one who still watches this. It’s quite cute, and a relaxing series. Still, even though it’s enjoyable, I do have to say that Tetsuko no Tabi was better.
#22 (12) – Kekkaishi – (7,8/10) – Unfortunately, only one episode got released this month. It was just a regular building-up episode, though I did notice how the humour of this series, especially when compared to the first half of the series, has gone down a lot.
#21 (16) – Gambling Apocalypse Kaiji – (8,1/10) – With the beam-arc, I felt like Kaiji lost sight of its original purpose a bit: gambling. I went into this series, expecting people, trying to outsmart each other. Not a bunch of people, being scared to death for episodes. Luckily, it feels like the next arc will breathe some new life into this series.
#20 (new) – Spice and Wolf – (8,2/10) – I admit: I’m impressed by the work that Imagin has done for this series. The mood is quiet, and yet enough things are going on to keep you interested, and the storytelling has been quite good so far.
#19 (new) – Persona Trinity Soul – (8,2/10) – I’m still not sure what to think of this series, but I mean that in a good way. So far, it’s carefully building up its storyline, and the climaxes so far have been quite interesting. Now let’s hope that this series can keep this up.
#18 (17) – Gundam 00 – (8,2/10) – So far, so good. Gundam 00 is really turning into an enjoyable series. I have a few problems with it here and there, but the characters and politics work, and thank god that it hasn’t turned into a cheap emo-fest.
#17 (23) – Suteki Tantei Labyrinth – (8,3/10) – So, basically this series turned from moderately entertaining to just plain weird. It’s very strange, it’s either incredibly good or incredibly bad. If you want to watch this, be aware of one thing: you don’t want to take this series seriously.
#16 (15) – Power Puff Girls Z – (8,4/10) – The fight against Him was awesome. The creators knew exactly what to do to keep the fight interesting, and much, much more than what you’d see in any random shounen-series *coughbleachcough*. The love-love-beam episode was also brilliant. Professor Utonium rocks! Unfortunately, the other episodes that got released this month were a bit disappointing, and too dramatic for their own good. Don’t get me wrong, this series actually gets away with its sappy drama, but it’s in no way as fun as the other aspects of the series.
#15 (21) – Clannad – (8,4/10) – Instead of really sad, I’ve found the past number of episodes from Clannad to be really relaxing. I must congratulate Kyoto Animation: they finally churned out a series that I liked.
#14 (new) – Hakaba Kitarou – (8,4/10) – The surprise of the season. This series has brought forth really entertaining horror-series that combines drama, horror and comedy perfectly. A definite recommendation; Noitamina rocks.
#13 (new) – True Tears – (8,4/10) – Like expected from the director of Simoun. True Tears has shown enough signs that it knows what it’s doing, despite the clichéd characters it has do work with. The pacing may be slow, but so far this series has done a very good job to develop its major characters.
#12 (22) – Kimikiss Pure Rouge – (8,5/10) – Kimikiss has gone into the right direction this month, and the love-triangles really work so far. I’m quite impressed with this series, and how carefully it manages to build up the different relationships between the characters.
#11 (10) – Saiunkoku Monogatari – (8,5/10) – Just when the pacing begins to pick up again, this series is plagued with random hiatuses that break it. Let’s hope that the final episodes will all air without any interruption.

#10 (5) – Gintama – (8,5/10)

Episode 46 was the first time where I caught Gintama, milking out its own jokes. Thankfully, episode 47 made more than up for it with what what’s definitely its best introduction to an episode so far. You just have to see that one for yourself to believe it, and I really admire the fantastic job that the voice-actor did on it.

#9 (new) – Gunslinger Girl – Il Teatrino – (8,5/10)

I don’t seem to mind the bad graphics as much as most others, but the fact remains that the animation has gone down a lot. Thankfully, the art itself is still nice to look at, and the story simply rocks so far.

#8 (new) – Porfy no Nagai Tabi – (8,6/10)

The first four episodes have been excellent in terms of building up. Sure, it’s slow, but Porfy and his sister have already developed into terrific three-dimensional characters.

#7 (new) – Shigofumi – (8,8/10)

The only problem with this series is that it likes to put in random plot-devices to increase dramatic tension. Apart from that, the stories so far have been excellent in terms of both storytelling and characters. On top of that, the art looks terrific and the soundtrack fits the series perfectly. Okay, apart from the OP, perhaps.

#6 (6) – Perrine Monogatari – (8,8/10)

Oh god… I’ve read the summaries for this series, so I know what’s about to happen. Seriously, Perrine’s mother is too awesome for such a thing.. :(

#5 (3) – Sayonara Zetsubou-Sensei – (8,9/10)

The big fear would of course be that the second season would run out of jokes, but thankfully, the opposite turned out to be true. For the second season, it seems that the creators decided to let go of all the brakes and go all out.

#4 (8) – Mokke – (9/10)

Have I already mentioned that the background-music for this series is amazing? In any case, for January, Mokke increased the dramatic tension for its episodes a bit, and it really works. The stories are simple, but I’m warming up more and more to the different characters. MadHouse did another terrific job on this adaptation.

#3 (4) – Ghost Hound – (9,1/10)

I really like to see that Ghost Hound has turned into an excellent series, which stands apart from all the others. The characters feel really natural, the storytelling has progressed in a really nice way and the story itself has also become more interesting with every episode.

#2 (new) – Wellber no Monogatari – (9,2/10)

Seriously, with the second season, Wellber no Monogatari has become so much better. Every episode works, and the characters have been absolutely amazing. And to think that there still are enough episodes left for this series to work with.

#1 (2) – Shion no Ou – (9,2/10)

This series just keeps and delivers consistently awesome episodes. Tournament-arcs often fail, but this series has managed to do so many great things with it.

Posted on 30 January 2008 with categories: Wellber no Monogatari ~ Sisters of Wellber


So, this was clearly a building-up episode, but that doesn’t mean that it wasn’t an excellent one. I really can’t believe how well the second season has progressed thus far, and I’m loving every minute of it.

This episode was mainly meant to develop the love-triangle between Galahad, Rita and Tina, when Sherry gets sick and the group is forced to make a pause. It’s clear now that both Rita and Tina love Galahad, though Rita is the only one who finds out that Tina too has feelings for the guy. Because of that, when Galahad confesses to her, despite how he’s still lovesick from Jamill, Rita declines.

Meanwhile, in terms of politics this series has also progressed. The king of Greedom has finally created a peace-treaty between the kings of Wellber and Sangatras, but in the meantime, he has plans, along with the king of Sangatras to screw the king of Wellber over behind his back. Guernia may be dead, but his father is still alive. I’m wondering when we’ll see Rita’s brother again. After all, he’s number one on my list of “guys that could have killed Tina’s parents”, and at the same time, he probably won’t like it when he finds out the plans of Greedam and Sangatras.

Posted on with categories: Suteki Tantei Labyrinth


Okay, now I know for sure: this show’s crazy!

I’m not sure what it is that the creators have taken, but I wonder where I could get some. I now finally understand how the director (Hiroshi Watanabe) could have produced series that are so incredibly different in overall quality. The guy is just incredibly dependant on the source-material that he has to adapt, and somehow manages to increase the most defining feature of said source-material. Shining Tears X Wind was rumoured to be the “worst RPG ever”, so of course you’d get a very crappy anime. The Law of Ueki, on the other hand, came from a very creative manga, and that worked just perfect with the strange sense of humour of Hiroshi Watanabe. And now Suteki Tantei Labyrinth has been adopted from a manga that according to Usagijen already was quite bizarre, and the result is… well… this.

The fact remains that nearly every of Hiroshi watanabe’s works left some kind of lasting impression on me, whether good or bad. I still cringe at how horribly cheese the twelfth episode of Shining Tears X Wind was. I still consider The Law of Ueki to be the single best shounen-fighting series out there. The final parts of Star Ocean Ex bombarded me with its horrible deus ex machinas, and it was exactly that series that made me realize how bad these are for the overall storytelling, and Suteki Tantei Labyrinth is currently fighting along with Power Puff Z for the title of “weirdest storytelling”. In the same way, I’m getting rather curious to check out his works on Tactics and Matantei Loki Ragnarok. The guy should try to animate some ideas of his own, though. I mean, he definitely has enough creativity to pull it off; he was the one who proposed the concept for Jigoku Shoujo, after all.

Anyway, about the episode… it really was one of the weirdest yet. The show may be heading further and further away from the “detective”-part in the title, but in exchange for that it has turned into a(n unintentionally) hilarious anime that just screams “don’t take me seriously”. Basically, Seiran’s brother seems to have made it to the new school-headmaster, and for that, he organizes a running-event. Mayuki, being by far the slowest person in the class, obviously doesn’t like this.

Hold on, though, it gets much weirder. When Mayuki is all alone, Hatsumi comes from out of nowhere, carrying a huge backpack full of meat and vegetables, in an attempt to replenish Mayuki’s energy (…yeah). She then falls into some kind of trap-door (yes, in the middle of a street), and both she and Mayuki end up in some kind of underground building, probably from before most of the buildings got destroyed. After a small conversation with his good and bad angel (am I the only one who was disturbed by the fact that these angels were wearing dresses?), he decides to cheat and take a shortcut.

Unfortunately, the plans of cheating are short-lived when the two of them get lost. Incidentally, he suddenly seems to have become much better at running… In any case, now we get to the really strange part… they run into a strange man who is trying to get rid of some rocks in one of the corridors. After they try to help him a bit (to no avail, by the way), he points them to a door, that’s supposed to be the exit. Behind that door, is an alligator.

Yes, don’t ask me where the heck that alligator came from. I have no freaking idea myself. After a hilarious chase, Mayuki uses the meat that Hatsumi was carrying (gee, what an incredible coincidence :P), to lure the beast away, and clear the rocks in the process. It then seems that the strange man was after a time-capsule, in which a demo-tape of his early days as a rock-band guitarist was kept. Unfortunately, the band went nowhere, and they broke up, and this demo-tape was the only thing that remained of their works. It seems that he was just being nostalgic.

The story isn’t over with just that, though. The rocks were not only blocking that time-capsule, but also some kind of underground water. Oh, and Maru ran off on his own when he smelled food. Hako uses this chance to secretly attack Hatsumi for no apparent reason, and Seiran, who also came from nowhere, tries to stop her, but fails. In the end, everyone flees from the water. For some reason, in the aftermath we see water come from the top of a huge building, which would be physically rather impossible. But then again, this is at least better than the murder on top of the radio-tower…

The episode ends with a very strange twist: The owner of the previously mentioned alligator is Shien, and he seems to have called her “Catherine”. Incidentally, it hasn’t eaten the meat from Mayuki at all, and strangely enough, the two of them end up hugging each other… Really, looking back, this series has so many bad storytelling-errors, but I’m really beginning to think that this was intentional…

Posted on 28 January 2008 with categories: Gunslinger Girl - Il Teatrino


Really, this episode rocked! I’d much rather see badly animated, but well-coordinated fights than godly animated, but abysmally coordinated ones. Flashy graphics is one thing, but if all the characters do is hurl flashy beams towards each other until one goes down, then I’d pass. I’m really impressed at how the plot has developed up till now.

You can say a lot about this series, but for me, it remains really well-written. The creators make sure that lots of stuff happens in one episode, and I actually feel that Artland did this better than the first season by Madhouse. The current episode is a Marco/Angelica-episode. One thing I also noticed of the second season is also that even though the character-designs have been supposedly “moefied”, it’s not like the girls are the only ones who get attention. One of the problems with the first seasons was that the guys didn’t really get that much attention, though here it feels that they get about just as much attention as the girls. If the creators really wanted to use the cute girls to sell this series, they’d have included random moe-moments, of which I haven’t seen any thus far.

In this episode, it seems that one of the major subordinates of Christopher gets arrested. The episode starts with a bit of his family, and I like how he’s portrayed in a way that doesn’t care about any clichés. Interestingly enough, there was no sign of Pinocchio, nor Franco or Franca. This clearly was an episode to build up, but still I’ve found this to be the best episode of the second season yet. I really like how this series has been getting better and better with every episode.

Posted on 27 January 2008 with categories: Porfy no Nagai Tabi


I’m getting rather annoyed at the huge negligence of this series. Sure, this definitely isn’t the first time that I blogged a series that almost nobody watches, but it’s really getting extreme here: this afternoon, when I checked up on my google-keywords this afternoon, I found out that eighty-four people came to this site, searching for the “Porfy sucks”. I mean, what!?

Okay, rambling aside, this was another excellent episode, as it continues to develop the characters. The episode starts with Porfy, waking up, and heading downstairs without waking up Mina. It’s here where he starts working on Mina’s birthday-present. It’s going to be something, carved out of wood, but he still refuses to show it to anyone. We also see him, borrowing a piece of string from his mother.

Mina then wakes up, and climbs downstairs. There, her mother (whose name is Anek, by the way) and father (whose name is Christopher, by the way), congratulate her on her eleventh birthday. Mina then rushes over to Porfy, though he acts like nothing happened (obviously, because the present isn’t done yet ^^;). Let’s just say that Mina isn’t happy. In any case, since this day it seems to be weekend as well, so Porfy and Mina are off from school. Therefore, Christopher offers to give the whole family a ride.

For that, however, a car is needed. It then turns out that Christopher is a car mechanic, and he can use the car of one of his clients (Corrina’s father, to be exactly), as long as he fixes it. And suddenly a lot of things become clear; most importantly Porfy’s obsession for cars. Of course, if your father is a car mechanic, you get to see a lot of cars. Now that I mention it, Mina must have become interested in Ancient Greece because of her mother. She came from a wealthy family, so she obviously has been schooled in these subjects, and she must have told Mina a lot of wonderful stories of those days.

Christopher indeed teaches Porfy a few things about cars as he works, after which Corrina drops by, looking for Zaimis. Once she left and the job is done, he takes the car along with Porfy to Mina and Anek. What’s also interesting is that he didn’t ask for a fee at all, as long as he could use the car for one day to go out with his family.

On the way home, Christopher and Porfy pass Zaimis and his father, who are just painting their stone hedges. Porfy wants to use the paint a bit to decorate his present for Mina (which we still didn’t get to see, by the way). After this, Anek and Mina are picked up, and Christopher heads to the ruins of an ancient Greek city, along with its own ancient theatre; something which Mina loves; you can really see that as she tries to imagine how that might have been. She even starts singing in Greek at one point. I must say that her voice-actress does a decent job. It definitely beats Les Miserables’ attempts at speaking French. :P

While the foursome has lunch together, Porfy finally gives his present to Mina: it’s the wood-carved Apollo that you can see in the OP. This will probably have a huge symbolic value, later on in the series. When Christopher and the others return, a guy named Nicholas arrives at his house as well, delivering various materials that are used to build a house with, along with a very young tree, which gets to be planted in the back-yard of the house. It seems to be a “minen”-tree, though I’m not sure what that translates to. I did find a tree called a “minesakura”, which means a Japanese alpine cherry, though I wonder whether those exist in Greece. In any case, because the name of the tree sounds like Mina, the tree is called “Mina’s tree”, and the episode ends. I’m not sure what kind of house Christopher intends to build, but I’d guess it’s some kind of inn.

On a side-note: I’m still surprised at how detailed, yet simple the dialogue for this series is. For every episode, there’s usually just two or three line that I just can’t understand. Apart from that, I’m having no trouble at all to figure out what the characters are saying. Ever since I started watching raws, there hasn’t been any series that I was able understand as well as this series. That’s also why it’s such a shame that no subs have come out: it’s the perfect series for beginning translators to practice their skills.

Posted on with categories: Mobile Suit Gundam 00


So, yes. This episode was for one half a recap, and for the other half it’s the proper introduction of the new Throne Gundams. Ah well, at least it was good for one thing: making me look forward to the next episode. Looking back at their intervention, while the presentation could have been better, it does make sense. I mean, Scheinberg had to have thought of the possibility that entire armies would end up against the Celestial Beings. Building in such a safety would be a great tactical move. It’s a real shame that none of the Gundams was captured, but I think that this is just going to be a simple matter of delaying the inevitable. It’s clear that the CBs have a lot of tricks up their sleeve, but these tricks have to run out at some point.

I don’t like the three new pilots of the Gundam Thrones, though. While I expect that they’ll work great when they’ll meat the normal Gundam Meisters (which is the reason why I’m looking forward to the next episode so much), on their own they seem really dull and uninspired. Especially the girl: she’s well-endowed, has a high-pitched voice, and doesn’t seem to be well-gifted in the intelligence-department.

One thing that could be interesting for the future episodes is how the three Throne Gundam Meisters lack one important thing: battle experience. Their Gundams may be fancy, but I can’t imagine how they’ve ever used them in a serious fight. Also, why was Sumeragi so worried during the battle? I mean, didn’t she know that the Throne Gundams would appear? Or could this be something that still needs to be revealed?

Posted on 26 January 2008 with categories: Shion no Ou


Really, Shion no Ou is one of these few series that’s just as awesome during its climaxes as during the building-up scenes. I don’t care anymore whether we get some exciting Shougi-matches or just their set-up: they’ll be awesome either way! Even though this episode just built up for the eight-finals of the shougi-tournament, it easy was able to remind me why this is my favourite series at the moment.

Like expected, Saori doesn’t get angry at Ayumi after finding out his secret. Instead, she and Ayumi get much closer now. Like Shion, she offers to pay for the operation on Ayumi’s mother, but yet again he refuses. What’s also interesting is how Saori too noticed that Ayumi started to get other reasons to play shougi, other than paying for his mother’s hospital bills. It also turns out that Ayumi has been keeping his shougi-adventures away from his mother as well. This was to be expected, of course. Ayumi really is a person who doesn’t want others to worry about himself, and likes to keep information about himself from others.

I’m still not sure what Satoru’s up to. First, he brought Saori and Ayumi closer together, and now he arranged behind the scenes with the help of the reporter that Shion’s first match in the eighth-finals would be against her foster-father. Instead, he keeps dropping hints how he was the one who killed Shion’s parents. What did seem interesting was the way he talked to Shion was much more different than usual, and it almost felt like he was emotionally involved with the things he said to Shion, how he too lost his parents at an early age. And really, Ayumi was too cute when he tried to protect Shion.

Interestingly enough, Hisatani also made it through the preliminaries. I loved how nervous he was at all the professional-looking shougi-players that he was amongst. It’ll be interesting to see what the underdog has up his sleeve. And I had to laugh at the way that Yasuoka picked up his phone that told him his place in the eight-finals. From his overdramatic movements, to him not knowing how to use a cell-phone.

The media also got developed a bit through this episode. Now that the tournament is progressing, the coverage of the media is also going to increase. Especially on the only two high-school “girls” who made it through the preliminaries. It really felt like they looked at Shion and Ayumi as they were a bunch of cheap idols, and it’s quite a change from the usual reporter, who always was really involved with the matches.

Posted on with categories: Shigofumi ~ Stories of the Last Letter


Okay, it’s a bit hard to believe that a fire would start, just from the suns rays that shine through a bottle of water, but thankfully this time, it didn’t ruin the story for this episode at all. All the doubts I had of this series after episode 2 are gone now, and this has been shaping up to be an awesome series that successfully combines the ordinary with the spectacular.

This episode tells the story of two girls. One of them is the best player at a local high-school tennis-club, and the other is the coach of said club. A lot of signs point to the fact that both are lesbians, or at least very close friends. One of them has been left by her mother, when she ran off with another guy. Right now, this mother died, and sends Fumiko out to deliver her Shigofumi.

Most of the episode is about the girl, running away from this Shigofumi, and afraid to confront it. After all, her mother ran off without coming back at all. This has to feel like some betrayal, and the girl must have thought that her mother hated her. Turns out that her mother watched her tennis-matches from the side-lines, and encouraged her all the way. The past two stories have been simple, but due to their building-up, they’ve worked out really well. What I especially like is how we also get a small look into the lives of the ones to receive the Shigofumi. I guess that this is the same reason why I fell in love with Jigoku Shoujo. ^^;

Posted on with categories: True Tears


I like how this show is progressing so far. There’s been quite a bit of drama, but it knows exactly when to lighten the mood a bit with a few good jokes, in order to prevent the atmosphere from becoming like Kannadzuki no Miko or Kyoushiro to Towa to Sora. There’s also hardly any random fluff that feels like filler, like you see in nearly every romantic comedy, and so far, the creators have really shown that they make use of every scene to build up.

The weak link for this series so far is Aiko. She really needs some background information. I want to know why she fell in love with Miyokichi in the first place, and why the heck she became so sick of him that she started going after Shinichiro. Her relationship wit the guy feels nowhere near as interesting as with Noe and Hiromi.

I really like how this series portrays the two of Noe and Hiromi against each other. This episode develops Shinichiro’s relationship with Noe into a more friendship-like one: the two of them just hang out and talk like friends. On the other side we see Shinichiro and Hiromi having both trouble to express their feelings for each other, and they both react differently for lacking the ability to do so. Now it’s going to get interesting when no-one else than Noe’s brother asks Shinichiro to start dating Noe, at the end of the episode. The guy definitely has an interesting sister-complex, which was probably caused by the death of his grandmother.

One thing that also puzzles me is how Shinichiro’s mother treats Hiromi. The two of them aren’t exactly the friendliest towards each other. If that’s the case, then how the heck did the two of them end up in the same house, I wonder…

Posted on with categories: Saiunkoku Monogatari


Okay, so this may not be the best series to watch with a headache. The dialogue is hard enough as it is, and that headache didn’t make things better. Still, at least I’m glad that Saiunkoku Monogatari seems to be back again. I’m really starting to get impatient with this series. I want to see Ryuuki develop already! I know it’s close, but it had already been close two freaking months ago. With all the hiatuses from this series, I’d really wish that this series would hurry up and get on with it.

This episode basically introduces the next mini-arc. Something seems to be going on in the Ran-province, and Shuurei manages to get permission from Ki Kouki to travel there and check it out. It seems to involve a guy named Son Chouchou, whose role I unfortunately couldn’t pick up. We also see more of the villain for this arc, who seems to have teamed up with the suspicious-looking noble whose name I can’t remember at the time.

Interestingly enough, Ryuuki too will be heading to te Ran-province, along with Shouka. I’m really glad that this guy finally gets some attention again. He was one of my favourite characters whenever he played a major role, so I’ve been a bit disappointed that he’s had so little attention for the past half year.

Now that I think about it, does anyone know how long the second season will last? AniDB says that it’ll end with episode 39, but I just don’t trust that website as an official source. And there is no way that this series will be resolved in six episodes. Of course, that could mean that there’s a third season, waiting to air in the upcoming spring-season. That would be awesome, though I really hope that the building-up of the past months will be worth it.

CHANGE USERNAME
Topgavin
Just finished watching the Madoka Magica series, 4th rewatch but 1st time on blurays. The show is such a work of art, and I was surprised by the sheer quality of the backgrounds in the blurays. It looked 3x as expensive to make as the normal show, Shaft must've poured a lot of money into post-screening editing.
SuperMario
They are all just average shows to be honest, but at least they're deserved to have full reviews.
SuperMario
and just an update for readers, I intend to give full reviews on shows that I followed but haven't covered here, starting from this seasons. The verdicts are: Seiren, Demi-chan, Dragon Maid and Hand Shakers
SuperMario
Do we really need to know all the historical context to enjoy/ appreciate Tanya? I think making a comparison does have influence in your expectation of the show in later events.
Lenlo
But this is all from wiki articles, since the last time I actually studied WW1 & 2 was in highschool. So im alittle rough on the subject :P
Lenlo
I thought, time-wise, we were past WW1, but this was in reference to how Germany at the end of WW1 was defeated, but not destroyed, which allowed them to rebuild enough to start WW2. You know, that famous quote "This is not peace, this is an Armstice for 20 years".

Thought it was a reversal of that.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Just one more note on silent voice, only one of those three omitted subplots I felt worth taking issue with, they leave out a couple scenes that flesh out Shoko's mother more.
AidanAK47
@Helgast, while that fairly obviously hinted at, don't spoil future events.
HelghastKillzone
@Lenlo We are way past the stalemate of WW1 and onto this anime's interpretation of the Battle of Dunkirk. Season Two is gonna be fighting against the Brits, Americans, the French Resistance and the Soviets.
Lenlo
I did some reading up, since WW1 & 2 arnt the points in history im really into, and I get her anger now. If they get a second season, possible time skip to WW2 because of it?

The episode was great btw, she just seemed to come out relatively unscathed for what she went through
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, It annoyed me that she got injured but then magically healed within the next scene but otherwise I loved the episode. It may be difficult to grasp in the show but if you know your history then you would realise just why Tanya was so bent out of shape. In truth this was Tanya's first major loss. One that renders her previous victories utterly worthless.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Your gonna have to elaborate on that "Most." When it comes to the three shows I was covering this season I thought I was praising them quite a bit. Only thing really bothering me is Rakugo stretching out it's ending. Otherwise this is one of the best seasons of anime I have seen in quite a while.
SuperMario
Hell yeahh, OwariMonogatari will air next Summer season. I'm hyped. Thank you Shaft
SuperMario
But it's good to hear your opinions on that. Like you said, honest opinion is good so I hope to hear more from reader's comments
SuperMario
@Anon958618: We writers are here to give you readers our personal impressions, and of course if we don't like a show we'd give the reasons why we don't like it, we can't really say otherwise if we found an episode to be sub-par. Personally, I have nothing but praise on my posts to the point I think I have to be stricter :)
Anonymous958618
I used to like reading this blog, but I find that most of the posts now are overly negative. Although I think honest opinion is good, it's a bit of a turn off in my opinion for readers...
Lenlo
Its nice to see everyone grown up in Rakugo. Old Yotaro and Konatsu. Also, how in the heck is Matsuda stil alive. That man was old when Yakumo was young. Finally, people need to stop telling that story if its gonna haunt everyone, I mean jeez.
SuperMario
It's Tanya for me next ^^
SuperMario
It ends happily. But go and see the twist. They make it like the most natural thing of all
Lenlo
Watchin Rakugo next. It end well?
Lenlo
Tanya disappointed me alittle. There was a change to actually hurt Tanya, but nope, she still comes out of it unharmed. She hurt herself more when she blew herself up than when someone else blew her up. Least shes seemingly drunk on war.
SuperMario
so sad to see Rakugo end... And that little twist. How can they make that twist so poetic?
SuperMario
@Lenlo: me & Kaiser? We were talking about the movie Koe to Katachi/ A Silent Voice
Lenlo
I must have missed something, because I have no idea idea what is being talked about.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I purposely put off the manga so I could watch the movie with fresh perspective. 2 weeks until we have a screening here
SuperMario
@kaiser: woah, thanks Kaiser. I know packaging a 6-volume manga into a feature film means they have to cut quite a lot of subplots, I just hope the main plot is going to be rewarding
Kaiser-Eoghan
Actually, there aren't that many manga that portray disabled characters, not even hentai.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: One of the people I got talking to after the film talked about Clannad and we both laughed about "what if Lars van Trier worked at Key"
Kaiser-Eoghan
Rakugo you are now on hold again until you end.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I look forward to your review of it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: There were, because I talked to the audience afterwards and looked around, people who weren’t familiar with anime there, so it does have a wider appeal.
While cheesy/melodramatic obviously its nonetheless heartfelt and well executed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The voice actress for Shoko is required to well, I can only call it deaf-voice-talk and she pulls it off quite well, it’s never cringy or forced.
Comparatively to other anime dealing at any point with bullying this does fare better and because it’s animated by kyoani, visually it’ll catch interest. The protaganists regret and redemption story still remains a very watchable one/theme.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Putting a voice on Kawai and Ueno will make you rage at them more.
While I didn’t think it was too bad/overly used, you’re going to have to do with the maudlin piano score Kyoani gives it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: At 130 minutes it’s a little lengthy, especially for an anime film, there is the feeling of attempting to stuff in the manga, three subplots at least have been removed/shortened yet at the same time despite the skipping in parts it does still feel long/aimless. Based on that I did feel it flows better in manga format.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: @Mario: I just came home from seeing koe to katachi/silent voice. Can't really say enough to fill a review, but it gets the general 3 1/2 out of 5 from me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Warning the next few posts contain words words words:
Kaiser-Eoghan
But I can take or leave Kaiju stuff.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Wheras Mothra was the most fun.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Aside from that, I've seen a few Godzilla films, Mothra vs Godzilla, shin Godzilla, Garth Edwards Godzilla, 90s American Godzilla and original 50s, the 90s one has aged horribly, the recent American one felt more faithful, the 50s one and the new Japanese one feel most socially relevent.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Wait...whah, why'd I get logged out I registered =<
AidanAK47
I previously had no interest in a Godzilla Anime film. But after reading the concept here I am now very very interested: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2017-03-24/godzilla-anime-film-reveals-full-title-story-new-visual-november-premiere/.113863
SuperMario
@Kaiser: they are still around. And believe it or not the actual band members are Damon Albarn (former lead singer of Blur) taking care of all the music and Jamie Hewlett who taking of the animation. I love alternative music, I can enjoy hip-hop music and I'm a fan of animation => this band basically has everything I personally love
Anonymous956164
@Mario: Kaiser here, posting from public computer. I had no idea the gorillaz were still around, many years ago I would have listened to their Clint Eastwood song, aswell as dirty harry and feel good inc, I also remember the artstyle of their videos catching my attention.
SuperMario
Anyone here listen to Gorillaz? They're one of my favorite band and their new song Saturnz Barz is great. Excited for their coming album now
Kaiser-Eoghan
I guess I'm considering blood blockade also because I'm burnt out o demanding and old films to some extent.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I really enjoyed the first season of Blockade. It's one of those cases where I think the delayed of the last episode killed all the exciment regarding the show. I actually fall behind and then catched up again as soon as the last episode was out so I enjoyed everything so much more
SuperMario
@Aidan: makes me really wonder why some of the studios are very uptight about their show's details. Like, they have to know if it is a short series or not, right.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Yet its not exactly a show that fits into being my thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Blood blockade battlefront is one of those shows that is always in the back of my head, despite negative biasI managed to at least enjoy some of gungrave, I grew up, sort of with trigun, so with blockade having Yuji Nightow involved theres always that part of me that says to watch blood blockade battlefront.
AidanAK47
This is one of the annoying things about previews. You got o the trouble of looking it up and writing on it only for it to get delayed or turn out to be a short series.
SuperMario
ohh, Blood Blockade Battlefront moves back to October airing. I might have a chance to cover it after all. Though look at how it gets delay and the change of director, it yells more concerns than optimism
AidanAK47
Yep, Manga is completed at 6 Volumes. But it's kinda weird that the series managed to cover 6 volumes when it's so slow paced. I normally thought that 5 to 6 episodes was needed to cover a manga volume on average.
SuperMario
@anon954341: ACCA will finish in 1 cour, as the manga is already completed and from what I heard episode 11 & 12 cover the last 5 chapters of the manga.
Anonymous954341
is Acca 13's story going to finish in 1 cour, or is it still ongoing?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Honestly do wonder how much longer anime blogging will be a thing and how much they have to compete with popular youtuber's channels.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I once had some idea of doing a forum with a friend, it never went anywhere.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Aidan gave good advice anon, I still found old posts from when I was teenager archived somewhere online and it made me facepalm.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Eh, I wanted to throw myself into Mario and your conversation about personalities by talking about myself, force of habit.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, Not sure what this rambling is about but good for you...I guess?
AidanAK47
@Anon, Blogs take a lot of work for very little in return. I wouldn't try starting one unless you are ready to make a huge commitment. Besides at your age(Based on that comment) it would be best to not put too much on the internet. The internet never forgets and it can come back to haunt you later in life.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The reason I bring some of this up is because I think that even if someone isn't the most emotional person out there, they shouldn't ignore/bash on certain shows/genres because of that, even if you don't get feelings out of it, the story/drama/characters could still be worthwhile.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I do think getting pissed off though is much easier irl than doing it online where it doesn't bother me as much.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And it surprises me alot that I followed so many romance manga years ago, enjoyed them, but I've never been a romantic person irl at all.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I also hate incompetence/failure and am generally not especially patient.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I care about others and appearances mainly to extent it either is of benefit, if I have to or it avoids hassle.
Kaiser-Eoghan
People tend to think I'm cold, articulate, blunt irl too.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm not a sentimental or passionette/emotional person irl, I don't like wasting time with other peoples shit and don't bother with it, avoid looking at people or touching them physically, talk in long dry speeches and in general come off as a quiet, reserved but snarky/cynical person.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I probably unknowingly come off as different on this site than I would irl.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Honestly I'd veer towards depressing or surreal/strange/messed up work more out of just wanting to see weird and depressing stuff happen and little else, just interests me, I can't remember the last time I cried.
Anonymous953782
um i wanted to make my own blog but it wants a email but i dont want my parents finding out
AidanAK47
It is weird how we never clash on what we want to cover on each season. Anyway I need someone to contrast my egotisical self so it's all good.
SuperMario
haha, Aidan: heartless grumpy monster & Mario: sentimental sappy bloke. Readers, you got yourself quite an odd combination of writers here.
Anonymous951955
We'll see; trailers can give false impressions
Anonymous951955
Not that all changes from source adaptations are terrible, but in this case, at least the trailer makes it look pretty bad.
Anonymous951955
It looks not great; I understand the need to change it a bit to suit the format/audience, but at what point does it turn from adaption to "loosely based on"?
HelghastKillzone
I'm glad we're past the phase of moe club shows.
AidanAK47
@Helghast, now that's something I never thought I would hear.
HelghastKillzone
Hell ya. We are in a golden age of anime that is filled with options and quality.
Anonymous951809
What a great week! Iron Blooded Orphans, Onihei, Little Witch Academia and ACCA 13 all had great episodes! I am spoiled!
Anonymous950847
@Anon and @Aikan

The LoGH manga remake has been out. It did not work for me.

I hope he anime goes its own way. I do trust Production IG, so I hope. I think it might not be this year. No lgoic, just a hunch.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Only info I can find is that it's coming out this year and it will be by Production IG. But I think you are right in that if it;s coming this year it will definitely be winter.
Feeling rather cautious about the remake myself. LoGH is dated visually but in a way it is a product of it's time and things you could forgive in the old version wouldn't be so forgivable in the new.
Anonymous949997
Does anybody know when that LoGH readaptation is coming? It's supposed to be this year right? Probably winter right?
SuperMario
But I will give it a full review anyways because all the amount of time I spent in that series should be paid off somehow, right?
Kaiser-Eoghan
But serious Gohands is a studio that had potential its just a shame its wasted on rubbish writers. Although I did like mardock scramble, because cyberpunk =)
Kaiser-Eoghan
If I met handshakers in public I'd refuse to shake its hand =D
SuperMario
Oh, it's actually just an extra Hand Shakers episode that serves as a prequel story. Not that bad then
SuperMario
Not to disregard Hand Shakers, but the best way to describe how I feel about that series is mind-numbing
Kaiser-Eoghan
They tried with that Military guy and his daughter but not by much.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But I do agree that there needs to be more to the characters, right now its JUST Tanya.
Kaiser-Eoghan
As for Tanya, having caught up with it, its a nice trashy guilty pleasure, especially due to the protagonist and I enjoy the setting because I'm a war film fan and like some of the action/politicking. I still do wish it was aesthetically a bit better. The dub isn't that bad and I'd welcome a second season.
Kaiser-Eoghan
In an ideal world Kino's journey would have been a good model for what light novel adaptations can be and SHOULD be.
Kaiser-Eoghan
If we must have more light novel adaptations, I would prefer them to be like Tanya, Muvluv, okay hardly breathtaking, but still better than that thing Aidan linked.
Lenlo
*Sigh* It looks exactly how I imagined it would and its terrible.
Lenlo
Please dont tell me thats an actual title.
AidanAK47
In another world with my smart phone light novel to get an anime.

Oh my god...This literally sounds like a joke title you would see within an anime. Tried giving it an honest chance by reading it and it's just shit. Just pure terrible.
AidanAK47
If people in Japan are actually buying blurays thinking its a good show then something is seriously wrong with the world.
AidanAK47
@Topgavin, maybe too many people watched it because it was so terrible. I haven't watched past episode 1 but it doesn't sound like it improved.
Topgavin
Just incase you guys were avidly waiting for the announcement, Hand Shakers is getting a prequel season because it's apparently selling well......
SuperMario
Should be happy for it, though I'm a bit disappointed that I can't be able to cover it
SuperMario
Inside Mari gets live-action series adaptation. Why not anime?? Duh
Spike
Little Witch Academia finally tips it's hand on the overall plot! I'm pretty pleased and think some direction might help bump it up from just being 'good' overall.
HelghastKillzone
@KTravlos Still watching it week by week and I'll write up a review on the second season of Iron-Blooded when it ends.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: It is however the kind of anime film that would have the wide audience appeal though, as in anime for people who don't watch anime.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: just prove that people has paid attention to anime. That's an encouraging sign actually
Kaiser-Eoghan
Feck, silent voice was booked out when I got there just now....should have booked in advance, showing at 7:00 on Friday booking it now.
SuperMario
@KTravlos: I haven't, but that more because I'm not a big fan of Mecha genre. I believe one of our writer HelghastKillzone still follow the series
KTravlos
No idea, if you are all still watching MS Gundam: Iron Blooded Orphans. I am, and while the 2nd Season toned down some of the elements that made the 1st Season good, it is still pretty good with the last episode doing a great job. If it keeps it, it definitely is head to head with Turn A Gundam for my favorite long-form Gundam Series (I am doing Gundam Origins for the original story)
Lenlo
Mhmm. It was one of those shows it weave adult themes into a kids show, so it had something for both. Now I can also appreciate the artstyle that doesnt use hard black outlines for everything.
AidanAK47
If anything I get so much more out of Samurai Jack now than when I watched it as a kid.
Lenlo
Love that dude Aidan. And yes Kaiser, I think anyone get enjoy it now. I love that its back, but even without that its easily standing on its own
Kaiser-Eoghan
How much of this love of samurai jack is a nostalgia driven thing? I'm not knocking that nostalgia but would it be possible to get something out of the show now if I never watched it when I was younger?
Lenlo
Yeah, that conversation was great. Really shows you how messed up hes become. Its also amazing when you realize that was the last set of spoken dialogue in the episode. There was not a single word uttered in the second half.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The audience who enjoyed samurai Jack has grown up, them bringing up seppuku and blood is possibly a part of that.
AidanAK47
Scene with the coffins was awesome as was the fight in the dark. My personal favorite part of the episode though was Jack arguing with his old design self. And young jack suggesting committing seppuku made my eyebrows raise. I mean..damn.
Lenlo
I agree Aidan. That quick shot of Jack vs the Daughter, with the sudden blood, suprised me as much as it did Jack. I really loved the scene with the coffins. The music nad sound was just great there.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, It was a really great episode. I love the meta of Jack being worn down by the wait and the wait the viewers had to endure for the new season. I is rather odd seeing blood in Samurai Jack though but it does make that particular moment have so much more impact.
Topgavin
April 16th for NZ. It is a lesser known movie than Kimi no na wa though, so I do wonder how available it's going to be in cinemas
Lenlo
This second episode of Jack was really just amazing. Its making full use of the new budget/tech for the art and of the new rating, along with the impact the timeskip would have on Jack. The cinematography was superb as well.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Koe ko machi will creen in Aussie in the beginning of April as well. I'll go to watch it; but I would love to jear your thoughts on the movie.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There is a preview screening of koe to kachi on Monday night, depending I may go, I may review it or at least talk about it on here.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm dying waiting for the Blame! anime film adaptation to come out in May. I've wanted an adaptation for years.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I'm too much of a cheap-ass to actually buy anything, don't even use legal streaming for films or anime/manga/comics, pirate almost everything.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or shelves for that matter.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've fallen out of the collectors thing pretty much entirely. I don't like to advertise any of my interests on my bedroom wall either.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Some years ago I ended up selling almost all of my anime dvds/vhs and manga, comic books aswell, took down my posters and moved what figures I had left into attic boxes , just no space for it and it was a good way to get some quick extra cash.
Lenlo
I love Rakugo as well, im not meaning to bad talk it at all. I simply also agree with Aiden that slow rolling us with Yakumo's death was poorly done and that its feeling stretched.
Topgavin
Nevermind, the $30 price tag made that decision for me
Topgavin
Weird how I see $8 movies on youtube as a ripoff yet a $90 series as a bargain. All these $300 box sets made me think it'd be in the hundreds. Wonder if I should get rebellion too
SuperMario
I'm still pretty much a fan of Rakugo this season. It goes much darker than the first season, something I didn't dare to think before consider this isYotaro's story. Would love to see more about rakugo's industry but this season does flesh out a lot of our core characters
Kaiser-Eoghan
I said it before but I'll bring it up again, the slow pace allows for, when big things happen to have a larger impact when they do.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*In
**and(not on) waiting for the series to finish
Anonymous935946
Season 1 showed a lot more, different periods and times, the development of Rakugo, the tragedy of Sukeroku & Miyokichi (or at least one version). In contrast, season 2 was basically about Sukeroku's legacy in the form of Yotaro and Konatsu and their kids, and Yakumo's relationship with death, changing from fatalistic to happiness over the course of the series.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think it might be 13 episodes, the first season had 13.
Anonymous935946
To be honest, I understand your point: It's hard to actually describe what happened in season 2. I guess I became invested into Yakumo in season 1, and then warmed up to Yota and Konatsu in this season.
Anonymous935946
Yeah, I think they certainly could have compressed the front half of the season. There wasn't too much plot going on, but I enjoyed the characters and their interactions, so I didn't mind the deliberate pacing.
Lenlo
I still really like Rakugo, its really good, it just probably didnt need 12 episodes. That said, really lookin forward to the timeskip
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I've never actually seen any of Olivier Asayas' films come to think of it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But going back to that dragging on, that did factor in almost making me hold off on waiting for the series to finish before going back. The anon's comment was what got me to watch this weeks episode right now rather than waiting till later.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Rakugo remains at this point still going in too long, but in fairness to the anon, yes the episodes conclusion was effective on emotional level and I bought into the dreamy atmosphere, largely due to the good cinematography the series uses.
Lenlo
Really? Im torn. Im glad they didnt bait and switch us again, but I always liked how grounded Rakugo was so im not sure how ok I am with the supernatural part and some of it felt like fanservice in regards to bringing characters back. The VA though is fantastic as always and I am definitely looking forward to this last timeskip. Cant wait to see the kids grown up.
Anonymous935526
Rakugo was otherworldly today. Not going to lie, was fighting tears back, but failed at the end.
SuperMario
@Topgavin: the bluray goes by region as well so you can only buy it in Australia/NZ region (region 4). For Madoka I still find it easiest to just go to JB Hi Fi and buy it. Sometimes I find it cheaper from JB Hi Fi than even their original distribution company.
AidanAK47
@Topgavin, I ordered my Madoka bluray's from Amazon.co.uk.
Topgavin
Where do you guys buy your merch? Was looking into buying the Madoka blurays but can't find a reliable place to ship to NZ.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: nah, Personal Shopper isn't even a horror. It's just a failed arthouse that have little to say except grief.
SuperMario
...even now. For Raw, I would never expect the positive reactions from mainstream. I think the film really push the tolerance of the voewers, but it was a refrrshing watch.
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