Posted on 31 May 2008 with categories: Amatsuki


This post is going to be short, as I have a slight headache right now. I swear to god, Amatsuki isn’t the right series to watch with a headache. This episode in particular introduced a character who could give Holon from Real Drive a run for her money in terms of elaborate monologues.

This episode continues to build up the Fox-demon arc. Toki and Kuchiha get more information about the state of things from the above-mentioned guy (it seems that Bonten is after the princess’s life). The thing that stood out obviously was Amatsuki’s trademark style of storytelling: first it’s all bright and light-hearted, until the fox demon suddenly brutally kills Heihachi while Tsuyukusa just watches her do it and doesn’t even try to help the guy.

Posted on with categories: Monthly Summaries

I noticed that this season, there are a lot of really good 13-episode series. Much more than usual. This trend seems to become more and more popular. In some cases, it’s unfortunate, because some series would be able to show their potential even more with 26 episodes.

#23 (16) – Allison to Lillia – (6,9/10) – Ugh, what a disappointment. In this month, the continuous amount of hard-to-take-seriously plot twists has destroyed my suspense of disbelief. A few errors in storytelling are okay, but in my opinion, Allison to Lillia is way too lazy in this.
#22 (12) – Persona – Trinity Soul – (7,6/10) – Persona is overplaying the traumatic parents way too much. Heck, did any of these teenagers grow up in a normal way? It’s a shame, but this series still feels like it’s missing something, and I doubt that the finale will be good enough to make up for this…
#21 (25) – Code Geass – Lelouch of the Rebelion – (7,7/10) – I’m finding it hard to force myself to not take this show seriously (why did nobody in the Britannian army for example get the idea of intercepting Lelouch’s phone-calls? How the heck did Lelouch collect 2 million zero-suits?), but Gode Geass is still good enough mindless entertainment.
#20 (11) – Blassreiter – (7,8/10) – Blassreiter: stay away from emo! The action scenes are still amazing, but the amount of emo-scenes has been getting out of hand now. Emo-distorted faces do NOT make a good anime.
#19 (15) – Wagaya no Oinarisama – (7,9/10) – The dialogue is surprisingly hard to understand, so I switched to the subs for this series. The episode about the main character’s love interest was really pointless, but apart from that Wagaya no Oinarisama has been enjoyable.
#18 (21) – Toshokan Sensou – (8,1/10) – I can’t help but thinking that Toshokan Sensou could have been better if it focused more on its plot, though it still can make up for this if the first half was just a simple build-up and it finishes with a strong finale.
#17 (13) – Macross Frontier – (8,1/10) – Macross has mostly been strange fluff this month, though the one action-episode that was included was pretty entertaining.
#16 (18) – Vampire Knight – (8,2/10) – Now I know what this series reminds me off: this is basically just the shoujo-version of Mushiuta. They also share the same strengths and weaknesses: both are solid and have a continuous melancholic atmosphere, and both hardly have any moment where characters are not angsting: so far, Vampire Knight has been all about angst angst angst angst, and nothing else. Angst can be great, but it shouldn’t take up the central focus in an anime!
#15 (23) – Chi’s Sweet Home – (8,2/10) – It’s getting a bit predictable here and there, but overall this turned into such a charming series. Much better than I originally expected.
#14 (17) – Soul Eater – (8,3/10) – It’s not deep, it’s not anything special, but it is fun, charming and it manages to keep my interest. Let’s hope things stay that way.
#13 (24) – Junjo Romantica – (8,4/10) – Well what do you know? Junjo Romantica is actually pretty good: it’s got a great sense of humour and it knows how to develop a romantic relationship. Seriously, I’m a bit baffled to say this, but a lot of straight romance shows can learn something from this series. :S
#12 (22) – Druaga no Tou – (8,4/10) – This turned out to be a surprise: it knows exactly how much it should take itself seriously. It’s not pure silliness, which would leave no room for a storyline, and it’s also not pure seriousness, as that would be rather hard to take seriously, considering the male lead and all. Thumbs up for Gonzo.
#11 (10) – Nijuu Mensou no Musume – (8,6/10) – Well, I think that episode six says it all. The beginning of this series was a bit buggy, though Nijuu Mensou no Musume has been getting better and better

#10 (9) – Itazura na Kiss – (8,8/10)

Excellent shoujo romance. I especially loved the end of episode 7.

#9 (8) – Kurenai – (8,8/10)

This was probably the quietest month for Kurenai, but it’s turned out to be a lot of fun. The characters are deep, and episode 6 was downright hilarious.

#8 (6) – RD Sennou Chousashitsu – (8,9/10)

Okay, so what if RD has turned out to be the opposite of what I expected. It’s fun, intriguing, varied, and clearly building up to something and I’m dying to know what that is.

#7 (7) – Crystal Blaze – (9/10)

Solid plot, both the main characters and villains are fleshed out well enough, great storytelling that doesn’t waste a single scene, great use of music, sympathetic characters. What more could you wish for? Great example of a great low-budget series.

#6 (14) – Gintama – (9/10)

And we’ve entered another serious arc of Gintama, and as usual with arcs like these: the quality increases drastically, and one moment will have you crying with laughter while the other will have you on the edge of your seat. Oh, and Kagura is the best hostage ever.

#5 (4) – xxxHolic – (9/10)

The different random stories on xxxHolic have been excellent so far. This is exactly why I’ve fallen in love with the first season.

#4 (5) – Amatsuki – (9/10)

I’m still not sure what it is with this show, but the dialogue has been incredibly well written so far, even though I only understand 60% of it.

#3 (3) – Himitsu ~The Revelation~ – (9,2/10)

This series is masterful in terms of storytelling I’m still not sure exactly how, but every episode feels complete once it forces you to see the big picture at the end. This becomes all to apparent when the more disturbing roots of the series come to surface (episode eight!)

#2 (1) – Porfy no Nagai Tabi – (9,2/10)

And so Porfy has started travelling. This series continues to be innovative, and it makes every single person Porfy runs into count. Such amazing attention to detail.

#1 (2) – Kaiba – (9,5/10)

Kaiba was simply incredible. A master in storytelling was clearly at work here.

Posted on 30 May 2008 with categories: FREEDOM


Tamaya!

*erhem* sorry, but I couldn’t resist. This episode had so many Ooedo Rocket-vibes. Heck, you could nearly say that this is Ooedo Rocket, condensed into just one episode, with the samurais removed, it’s almost scary to see how many similarities there are. And still it doesn’t feel like one of the two ripped off the other.

Seeing as I loved Ooedo Rocket, there’s no surprise that this was probably my favourite FREEDOM episode up till now. This episode had everything: fun characters, a great storyline of trying to create the rocket, a bit of background on why Ao was the one on the picture that Takeru found (her father once tried to go to the moon as well, but he failed. Ao was forced to forget everything that happened, and so she started to get really involved in the local space program). Blue Earth was of course the Akai of Ooedo Rocket. In this case, he was supposed to go to the moon along with Ao’s father, but chickened out at the last moment.

One point of criticism: it hardly feels like two and a half year have passed by. Characters still look the same, which is especially suspicious since we’re dealing with a bunch of teenagers here. I really wonder whether Freedom can pull off a good finale. Heck, what kind of finale is it going for anyway? At any case, I do hope that the creators won’t go for something too epic, especially since Freedom has been so delightfully down-to-earth up till now.

This episode also reminded me of why I love Yoshihiro Ike’s soundtracks so much. To be honest, he’s my favourite musician, along with Yuki Kajiura. Yoko Kanno’s work is excellent, but in my opinion she’s not the best.

Posted on with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~


OMG! WTF! When I started watching this episode, I had totally forgotten that this series comes from the same production-company as Shigurui. This episode was utterly incredible, but let me put up a warning: if you can’t stand gore or are female, then stay far, far away from it. God, that was disturbing. Here I was, believing that this series wouldn’t go beyond the incest and homosexuality of episode three.

I don’t even want to fully understand this episode. Even without knowledge about what was being said, the themes and messages are rock-solid, and they hit you incredibly hard. I refuse to spoil things, but let’s just say that Madhouse is an animation-company that doesn’t care about censors. Really, even Shigurui didn’t freak me out this much!

God, I love this series.

Posted on with categories: Kurenai


And so the climax of Kurenai has started. The OP and ED feel even more out of place now, but it also becomes apparent how much the building-up of the previous episode is paying off. The second half of this episode was really good, and I’m eager to find out what the creators have in store for us for the final three episodes.

As it turns out: Murasaki indeed is a legitimate child of the Kuhoin, but she was just never registered. She was just there as a tool for inside breeding, to keep the Kuhoin-family as pure-blooded as possible. In other words, brother and sister make children together. I recall having read somewhere how a child of a brother and sister has a larger chance at a personality-disorder, and looking at Ryuuji, I can indeed see why this Kuhoin-tradition has continued on for ages.

What surprised me was that despite Shinkurou’s godly power, he was easily beaten by Ryuuji’s body-guards. I guess that that female bodyguard never really gave Shinkurou the chance to show that strange elbow of his, suggesting that she’s been really well-trained for her job.

This episode somehow reminded me a bit about Sword of the Stranger, and there are actually a lot of similarities between the two: a powerhouse takes care of a small and innocent child that’s somehow vital to the plot of the bad guys, and as the story progresses, they get to know each other more and more. Now that I think about it, there are many more series who use this formula (Seirei no Moribito, for example), and it works surprisingly well. :)

Posted on with categories: Macross Frontier


Thankfully Macross Frontier is back on track with this episode. Okay, the question remains whether it’ll stay this way for long, but at least I’m glad that this episode turned out pretty nicely. For once, the focus is on the side-characters, and it’s about time that they too got a bit of development. It’s about time that especially Kuran got some attention, because I’ve hardly seen anything of her in the past few episodes.

If I understood things correctly, then Mikhael lost his parents when he was young, and then continued to live on with his sister. is sister then got killed in a friendly fire-accident when she was a pilot of some sort. At the time, Kuran lived with them as well (suggesting a possible love-relationship between the two for the future-episodes of Macross Frontier).

It’s good to see an episode focused on giving background to the characters. This’ll definitely be useful for future episodes. The fight scenes were also pretty entertaining, and it’s here where you can really hear the greatness of Yoko Kanno’s soundtrack. At the same time, Ranka continues to do very random jobs, and showing that it indeed does take a lot of work to become a popular idol.

Also, who was it, spying on the meeting of the Macross Frontier leaders?

Posted on with categories: xxxHolic


Hmm, for the first time in the second season, an xxxHolic episode disappointed me a bit. It surprises me a bit, since this episode goes back to Kohane’s arc, but somehow this episode felt off and among the least interesting episodes of xxxHolic, along with the one about superstition.

I think my biggest problem was with how it just felt that Clamp tried to shove down it’s message through the viewer’s throat. The usual subtlety in this series was gone entirely, and instead we get an obvious story with an obvious message: “Here is Kohane! She’s hated and disliked by both her viewers, colleagues and mother! She receives death threats and gets beaten up! But she has special powers, and she’s always right! Now feel sorry for her!” Sorry, but I’m not buying it.

One series that I can think off that successfully dealt with the topic of psychics and the media was Ghost Hunt. Okay, Ghost Hunt had its own problems, but none of those lied in its themes and messages. The arc about the spoon-benders was really good at showing the relationships between kids who claim to bend spoons and the media, and the people who watch it.

I really hope that the next episode will offer a clever twists to the whole story, because I really know that the creators can do better than what they’ve shown here.

Posted on 28 May 2008 with categories: RD Sennou Chousashitsu


One rather annoying side-effect of the recent arrests of the Share-uploaders is that the amount of fake files uploaded on Share has drastically increased. What adds to the annoyance is that the raw uploaders on Tokyo Toshokan don’t seem to check the files they get from Share, so there were times in which I downloaded the same fake file twice. That was not fun.

Oh and yeah. In this episode, the creators found it a good idea to stuff the Real Drive girls in swimsuits. That’s what I call pure guts. Anime nowadays are rather obsessed at making their girls (and boys often as well, though it’s less apparent) as perfectly-looking as possible. Overweight is already a large problem right now, so just imagine how the problem would look like in sixty years from now. It’s great to see some variety in them.

In this episode, I also noticed something strange, as that the episode was finished before I knew it. When the ending-credits rolled, I was like “wait, it’s finished already?” For some strange reason, this episode felt like only ten minutes, instead of twenty. Surprisingly little happened in it for a Real Drive-episode: it’s just the case of a virtual-reality girl who ends up at Minamo’s school and becomes known as a ghost. This ghost fools Minamo’s friends a bit, and then Souta arrives and explains what happened.

Posted on with categories: Crystal Blaze


The past week, I’ve gotten a few interesting comments, along the lines of “this post says nothing about the actual episode, what an informative anime blog” (with the last part being obvious sarcasm), and they got me thinking. It’s not the first part that got me (heck, I’m all for constructive criticism), but rather the assumption that every anime blog should have a summary for each single post. I’ve personally never seen Star Crossed as an episode summary blog. It’s more that I write about whatever catches my interest after watching an episode. Depending on my mood, I randomly summarize a bit and add a few thoughts on the episode in question. But are there more people who feel that I should put more focus on summaries?

Having said that though, I do realize how my past posts on Crystal Blaze have been mostly thoughts and hardly any sentence on what happened. I’ve been carried away by the many surprising good points of this series. So, for variety’s sake, here is a summary of the episode. And boy, was it a great one. :)

The episode starts where the previous episode left off: the swat team, who was assigned to put a stop on Kitou’s research, is inside the closed space where Kitou and Kirie unleash a glass woman upon them. This woman quickly slaughters the entire squadron, as bullets seem to not work on her. Kitou explains that with the help of a special ring, the glass woman knows who she should attack and who she should leave alone.

When everyone in the chamber has died, the woman goes after the rest of the swat team, who she defeats easily. Very soon, more glass women come and help her. Meanwhile in the same underground facility, JJ and Sophia witness this bloodbath, as Sophia tapes it, and they’re astounded at the capabilities of the glass women. Because the security is busy with the swat-team, they can move around quite freely and they end up in what looks like the main database. There they find out that Kitou has been using live women for his research, and he’s turned them into experimental subjects.

JJ tries to call the chief of police, though there’s no connection. While he’s rambling on ethical issues, Sophia tries to copy the data she’s found for evidence. Meanwhile back at the glass women: they suddenly freeze and shatter. Kitou’s research has improved, though the HW-series is still imperfect. Kirie then suggests using the BW-series from now on (I’m wondering: what does the “B” stand for? Bio-weapon, or something?). Kitou, however, is still interested in the experiment, mainly because of what a success HW9 turned out to be, which is why he wants to retrieve her: in order to figure out why she’s special. (does he know that she’s about to die anyway?)

Kirie and the rest of security then go on and clean up the rest of the swat-team that wasn’t killed by the glass maidens, while JJ and Sophia are discovered by a random guard that passed by. They manage to make it towards the stairs that lead to the exit, and at that point I guess that JJ wants to hold off the guards so that Sophia escapes. Sophia runs up the stairs and a number of gunshots sound, but we have no freaking idea what happened back then.

Meanwhile, outisde the base, the three members of the swat-team that left behind fail to make any contact to their comrades. Akira meanwhile is still spying on them, and listening to their communications. It’s then that the few survivors manage to make it back outside and report. Akira then tells this to Shu, as the chief of police enters his room. Shu then tells him about what his little nephew and Sofia have been doing, and is surprised how the chief of police didn’t know that.

As Sophia reaches the door to the exit, she realizes that it’s shut and that she can’t get out. She then calls Shu for help. She tells him where she is, but before they can finish the call, one of the guards discovers her and destroys her phone. The chief of police then wants to come along with Shu because of JJ, but Shu tells him, as well as Manami and Ayaka to remain where they are. Meanwhile, Kitou and Kirie inject Sophia with the strange liquid that turns you into glass.

Ayaka meanwhile finds it strange that all sites about the glass women have gone down. Sara meanwhile continues to be troubled by her left arm changing to glass. When Shu arrives at the hidden base Akira waits for him and both of them rush to the entrance, where they find a naked Sophia with one glass arm, and they take her to Doc as quickly as possible. It’s a bit strange that Kitou would just “let” Sophia escape, and indeed: she also received a bracelet when she was injected, and in this bracelet there’s a transmitter.

The strange thing is that Shu is just fine touching Sophia, and doesn’t get burned. The others arrive and are shocked at the glass arm, especially Sara, and the episode ends.

Kitou’s getting pretty decent for a pure villain. Often, the villains that get fleshed out are somehow misunderstood. While this is nice to watch, it’s also good to see someone who really doesn’t have any ethical values and is more than just a stereotype that’s used to keep the story going. He himself is a mad scientist, obsessed by his creations. The guy is much better than most other villains, who only sit in a chair and do nothing but look evil.

Posted on 27 May 2008 with categories: Soul Eater


A pretty decent conclusion of the previous episode. It’s nothing deep or special yet, but it does the job of keeping my interest. Soul and Maka were bound to get saved somehow, and so Stein and Maka’s father pop up at the exact right moment (was it explained how they knew that Chrona would be at the same place as Soul and Maka? I couldn’t quite catch that in the raw). The Witch Medusa also is also one of those villains with the “Sailor Moon”-syndrome (just put on a different outfit, and nobody recognizes you. I can understand Maka and her father not noticing this, but Stein seems like a sharp guy; he could have easily recognized her).

My favourite part of this episode was without a doubt the scene where Black Star suddenly barged into the hospital room. Maka was about to get a bit too angsty for her own good, and his entrance was perfect to lighten up the mood, and downright hilarious as well. This show really is at its best when it focuses at the banter between the various main characters.

CHANGE USERNAME
Kaiser-Eoghan
Still enjoying the sangatsu manga and all the character interactions in this most recent volume.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Quintuplets might be under consideration, dororo is a definite. I don't want to watch revisions , girly airforce or plane thing because of the cgi.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have the first 3 doro episodes downloaded to watch tomorrow, I'll comment on them, I'm giving it a shot because I love Tezuka.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The quintuplets thing is one of those things I would see myself chuckling at for a bit then feeling no obligation to it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The cat thing is probably cute but its too light for me to invest in in the long run.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Regarding this season, I'll be direct, it isn't my thing, I got my fill of Kaguya's manga and all I can out of it, promised neverland, once the escape bit finished just turned into an action series (at least from what I read) lacking a compelling followup hook for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Acca had this odd way of delivering information that made it seem stuff went on between the lines or offscreen, often it worked, sometimes it didn't. Its a show that really picks up after the first couple of episodes and really gets elevated by its revelations, cool setting , art style and opening theme too.
Lenlo
I agree it does that. I think my issue may come with me maybe missing something or just not understanding the series as a whole, and so parts of it were lost on me. I enjoyed the series I would say though
SuperMario
Let me rephrase by saying ACCA ending neatly ties up plot threads for me
Lenlo
I didnt say I didnt like it, just that it wasn't what I expected. It was odd. I think I need time to process it.
SuperMario
@Lenlo: you didn't like ACCA ending? I thought the ending is easily its best part. It's the first few episodes that feel slow for me
Lenlo
Also, just finished ACCA. Man... that was a weird ending. Not sure how I feel about the series, but damn, did it have style.

Also, thanks (?) Wooper.
Lenlo
Lets see... Dororo is good, but I am still lukewarm on it. Kaze Fui is a fantastic carry over from last season. Mob and Neverland of course. Shield Hero, if you want to be part of the latest big craze discussion. Kaguya if you like romance. Ill search some more, but those are off the top of my head.
Anonymous3338351
What are some must-watch anime this season; I'm watching MBP100 and Promised Neverland rn
Vonter
Shield hero looks like it fits with that journey of doing the right thing even though most are against you.
Vonter
You know what it reminds me of. It's kinda like that episode of Malcolm in the Middle. Where the family returns after a trip and find the neighborhood celebrates their absence, since everyone dislikes them. By the end when they make up, all the neighborhood gets bitter with one another because they no longer share a connection of hate with Malcolm's family.
Vonter
Also the undercurrent semblance of looking more like a bad guy or anti hero. Despite him having a good moral compass.
Vonter
SuperMario - I don't felt it was about being defeated or not. I got the feeling it was taking the hit for others. Because since he has high defence he does take the damage, but he does look weary about doing that. And the framework paints him so far more as an underdog than a prodigy.
SuperMario
But does the fact that he’s the greatest defender makes him the one who can’t be defeated? I haven’t watched the latest one though
Vonter
I did like the new episode of Shield Hero. It made me realize there can be stakes in Isekai battles. In both Overlord and Slime I usually space out in the battles because they seem unnecessary outside of animation. It's more interesting if there's a display of wits and using the environment. I also like the protagonist be on the defense and the sidekick as the attacker.
SuperWooper
Here's a "review of one of our own reviewers:"

Lenlo is a pretty cool guy. His taste refreshingly runs the gamut from shounen action series to character-driven period pieces. His use of "Read More" tags and intro paragraphs, though they break the site's house style, give his posts their own signature that his readers likely appreciate. I give Lenlo a 92/100.
SuperWooper
Also, if we're getting pedantic, my post on Kaguya wasn't a "review of one of your own reviewers." It was a review of an anime episode.
SuperWooper
It's "shitty?" Really? None of what we do here is for profit, or for a grade. If I want to alert readers to the fact that I've never read the manga, and choose to do it in a less-than-serious way, I don't think that violates any sacred rule of anime blogging.
Lenlo
@Niello, the technical aspect of Megalo Box is very lacking. Its a character drama with sports, not a sports series with good characters, basically. And yeah the gear makes no sense.
Anonymous3336806
It seems kinda shitty to write a "Proceed with caution!" disclaimer before the review of one of your own reviewers...
Firechick
There are also old school isekai manga such as Red River, From Far Away, Crest of the Royal Family (Which is still going), and a few others.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Animosh: Red River also, but for a while it takes some time to re-gain the addictive quality it has in the beginning. I didn't stick with Yona, it felt like it didn't have any direction on where it was going.
Vonter
Those were different times. And while Isekai, it feels like a different genre. I feel the Isekai of old were also more eastern, given the RPGs of the time were more fairytale like and also several you listed have more of an eastern influence.
Animosh
Yona of the Dawn is also a good example of a series with a politically ambitious female lead, though I wasn't a fan.
Animosh
I forgot how female-oriented early isekai series were. I already mentioned Twelve Kingdoms, but there's also Escaflowne, InuYasha, Rayearth, Fushigi Yugi, Haruka (I've only seen TK though) ... so I guess it's only after the recent revival of the genre that it started targeting men.
Niello
Out of all the sport anime I have watched I think Monkey Turn V is the best so far. Megalobox is pretty good but nothing special imo. I heard that in term of boxing the technical aspect isn't good, though I don't know how true that is. What I personally can't get over is how their gear in reality should just be making people fall over quicker, which shouldn't make the matches more fun.
Niello
I still
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have to stop underestimating these sports shows.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Lenlo is good at convincing me to watch stuff I might not have otherwise watched, I saw ashita no Joe, Kaze and megalobox due to him =)
niello
I should catch up on Kaze, the gap is starting to get quite big.
Lenlo
Im gonna say this every week. How is an anime about running so damn good?
Vonter
I suppose when creating a story one also needs to put some restraint, since as human beings we easily gravitate to certain "tastes."
Vonter
But oh well, I think guys do also have their kinks.
Vonter
@niello - Love might be the hardest emotion to convey. Since even if you put the poses, attitude and the like, the interactions is what sells it. The chemistry as some call it. Sadly in most anime it kinda feels one sided because the male characters are too passive. I like the relation in Shield Hero, but it also underlines the common parental figure girls tend to put.
niello
Later, the author made him accepts the love as a kind of rehab for his bitterness and for the sake of political advantages the girls will gain. So there's this weird atmosphere where the author criticises harem isekai but is writing one himself, although he's certainly trying to make it an unconventional one. At least that's how it is in the web novel. I don't know if they changed it in the LN.
niello
And also to show off. Meanwhile the MC acts like he's not involved because he prioritise the right thing, and also because he's dense toward some of the girls around him (at first) and felt put off by other girls who make bold advances. In essence, he has a harem but he doesn't seek to make one.
niello
@vonter The thing with Shield Hero and harem is that the MC berates how other people who got transported to another world have the idea of forming harems like the LN/manga/anime they know before getting transported. That became the focus of some people instead of what they should be doing like seriously training and preparing for enemy attacks, which they opt for the easy way like it's a game.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - Aside from reincarnating as a baby. Not really. Zettai Karen Children from the author of Ghost Sweeper Mikami, seems like they do. I mean they start very young and later covers have them as teenagers.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Animosh: A slower take on a story is something that has grown on me as I get older.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Animosh: Those scenes in kaze clicked for me this week, but at the same time, that last bit and also the scene in the middle were definately uncharacteristically cheesy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter@Amagi: Mushoku tensei has the lead character grow up throughout it I think?
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think fan interaction by creators, theres something there, listening to fans ideas within reason.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Something that comes to mind here, sometimes i think we the audience might be better at writing the shows than the people doing them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I enjoy explictness but wish it was used less juvenile-ly.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The latest character thats being recurring in my head is a kind of communist or liberation theology soldier that is trying to convert people, while also struggling to keep his highly polarized beliefs in some kind of balance.
SuperMario
@Amagi, tell me about it (having ideas but to lazy to materialize it). Heck, they are mostly lame ideas to begin with
Kaiser-Eoghan
I liked Scums wish .
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its almost always a boring comedy or action show.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or have some kind of anaylsis of why the characters express themselves in certain ways in relationships.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or something depressing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I really really wish more stories involving nudity/sex/fetishes/ecchi/hentai could actually use this kind of thing for a good psychosexual story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I really like it when the conflict has something to do with beliefs or repression aswell.
Amagi
Same here. I mean people are conflicted too, so these characters are actually more relatable. Strangely directors usually think otherwise.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I loved goodbye Lenin, my old German teacher in school was really awesome and took the class to see it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I like conflicted characters.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm also fond of the idea of a villain trying to turn pure hero out of guilt from the past while still longing for his evildoing days and self-hating because of that and also feeling guilty out of enjoying the violence he commits against the villains he's up against. And sees the violence done onto himself as punishment .
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: They just end up as ideas written up rather than stories in my case.
Amagi
@Kaiser: I often feel guilty for being as lazy as I am because I have a lot of ideas and barely do anything with them. I don't even have the "I can't draw it" excuse most other people have. I am just lazy and useless.
Vonter
I've been trying to make a story for quite some time. Is about a special ops agent, that turns into a woman after a failed mission where he lost his friends and comrades. He's on a mission in order to look how to turn back and find redemption for the lost of his friends.
Amagi
OH GOD actually got FGO's Hassan i Sabbah after all with the last few quartz. Suicide prevented, thank you God.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Not a day goes by where I'm not thinking up some wild idea.
Vonter
Kaiser-Eoghan - The best use of incest in a story, is the one you don't see coming, like in King Ooedipus or Old Boy.
Vonter
I think the best case for that story would be using the Yoko Taro method of storytelling. Start by the end and build on how that tragic ending happened. There's a presentation where he explains his method. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OO_d3fwTNPo
Kaiser-Eoghan
I would never ever use incest positively in a story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also, I had a scenario where the hero develops an obsession with the villain, to where killing him is less about personal heroic codes, but curing himself of that obsession.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But the great thing is that the actual thing, relationship never happens.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - That last one just reminds me of erogame about a girl than can't quite get with her crush and relives that same moment several times. Sometimes she reincarnating as man and the crush as a girl. In the end all versions end with rape.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also some of these villains I came up with, they're deaths and rebirths could only occur when it came to settling their specific individual problem. Thus by admitting his/her love for the brother he/she dies.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: I'll add it to my list.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I treated one of my characters like total shit, guy was a girl in his former life, got raped by some alternate version of his brother, got reincarnated a man and as a child killer/abuser, only every time this character committed a crime, they felt they abuse they inflicted on others.
Vonter
Kaiser-Eoghan - Have you read A World I Rule by Tank Guy? That's essentially an isekai about screwing over, what's essentially Eden.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And the true victory and winner is those who lost.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I love the endless cycle of you can't win no matter who you are.
Amagi
@Kaiser: I live for this stuff.
Amagi
@Vonter: I liked that about Tiger and Bunny. I don't want to spoil in case someone is about to watch it. But it contained this element of "something we're looking up to is actually some evil thing/person" and I don't mean the guys they're working for, it was clear from the beginning that those were corrupt.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But at the same time, it isn't like the hero was right either.
Vonter
Amagi - I think in the case of old villains it was caused because those didn't had civilian identities to empathize to the "human".
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also, because I love screwing characters over, after becoming the villain and actually achieving through evil, the perfect good society, even after taking in all the sins of the world and seemingly eliminating the evil inside people, humanity just fucks it all up again and became a monster all for nothing.
Amagi
We also usually don't see the villains having any problems that aren't related to the actual thing they cause. For example losing someone dear to them. Not because heroes killed them or anything, just..so. That's life etc. Making them feel more like persons. Hell even heroes have this problem. Usually when a hero suffers it's caused by the villain. As if the world wasn't more complicated.
Vonter
Also Franken Fran had a very dark and very funny story about a superhero founding out that the organization he's facing wants to conquer the world with charities.
Vonter
Watchmen, Dr. Strangelove, The day the Earth Stood Still kinda put a similar message about needing to be better with each other in order to have a better future.
Amagi
Yes, it's usually too simple. We have a clear hero fraction and a clear fraction of the villain.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*villain
Kaiser-Eoghan
I also like it when the villain isn't actually in co-operation with other bad guys, but theres also a hero, but the hero is marginalized because there are so many differing villaib factions.
Amagi
Even there, in the end it was heavily hinted that people can never bring back gone things. She saw through them and knew they were pretending and that it wasn't real anymore. Think that would happen in the other potential series we came up with too and it cause more character development.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Elementary school up to their mid 30s.
Amagi
Have to think of Goodbye Lenin, kinda. Not exactly that topic but similar. With the mother falling into a coma during GDR time and waking up after the fall of the wall and her family trying to pretent that they're still living in the GDR to not shock her since it could mean that she'd die.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - To what extend watching them grow up? I mean in Dragon Ball we've seen Goku's entire life. In Ashita no Joe we have a big arc before the MC ever gets into an official boxing match. In Rose of Versailles we see a change of ideology over the course of 12 years.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Bad guys idea was to start up so much shit in our world to terrify the people back home.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The guys homeworld was basically one where things we consider evil are good over there.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I remember working with the idea, where a villain brought people back, solely to open the gateway to his homeland through stealing energy from them resulting from psychological turmoil, then broadcasting how terrible humans are back to his homeland, and his people seeing how awful humanity are, then realizing they should stop being bad people.
Amagi
It's why I am always a huge fan of characters (usually, who could have known, villains) who try to resurrect a past decade or something. Like someone trying to build a world or VR space that imitates the 80s because it was the time he grew up in and which he is still missing and want to return back to. Could be the 90s as well or whatever.
Vonter
The paradox with that, is that technically one becomes a tyrant or a monster eventually. Power corrupts the individual. Whose to say those villains didn't start with good intentions?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi; Seeing a characters entire life too, seeing him grow up.
Amagi
@Kaiser: I am often thinking about such a series too. A real coming of age, with the character realising what he had lost or is about to lose, how life changes and him trying to make it stop or escape. Or force the old status quo but realising it isn't possible to maintain.
Amagi
@Vonter: Yeah that's a great compromise. Defeat the villain but maintain his new state, or develope his idea or whatever. Just without the errors the villain made.
Vonter
Oh my, realizing that last one, could make most Isekais more interesting, since there are things those characters can't do by design.
Amagi
And then the MC comes and tells everyone that the old life is good as it is with all its flaws and don't realizes that he is actually lucky enough to not be born into misery or in the middle of some war zone like many others who die and suffer.
Vonter
Villains in the end, take the decisions the hero cannot.
Amagi
It's especially bad when the authors aren't even aware of what they're doing. Like showing that there are characters in the fictional world that get an actual better life with the change the villain brings. Paralysed people being able to move for example or poor outcasts not needing food anymore, in case that the villain forces some VR world and digitalizes people.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Booboo hiss , no revolution is lame. Revolution good, do revolution.
Vonter
Kaiser-Eoghan - Aggretsukko touches a bit on the last two examples.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I still love the idea of people actually benefitting from the terrible things the villain does and actually learning from it and the world becomes a better place because we learned not to repeat the bad guys actions. But the bad guy committed those very bad actions to make us realize that.
Amagi
@Vonter: Yeah I never liked that meta message most stories have that basically boils down to "be happy with everything as it is now and don't try changing it, also, revolutions are evil".
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or where a person attempts to explore becoming something more but ends up just accelerating the breakup/going seperate ways thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
yes vonter, you are giving good examples.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And people growing apart because they've gotten older.
Vonter
@Amagi - Villains have selfish desires, human flaws, and determination. Heroes on those series usually defended the status quo, since that's the only thing they saw as right. And in the meta was to tell the audience how they should behave.
Amagi
Could never get into wimpy characters either. Shy yes, as long as shyness is portrayed seriously and not the typical shy/naive "etooo..ano ne.." harem guy/girl. But I always wondered who can even selfinsert into the typical harem or otome lead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd happily watch a coming of age story which was just about a bunch of guys hanging out, playing videogames, watching films, anime, playing outside and just joking around, very little melodramatic stuff, only on a rare occassion drifting in naturally into the narrative.
Vonter
Ano hana is about reflecting on how the characters grew up.
Amagi
I mean villains are often the oddballs. MCs are too "normal". They're usually the typical guys that maintain the status quo (even if it's flawed), get/want a romantic relation ship and a normal life whereas the villains have ambitions and are often "different" to say it that way. They feel more human to me. Or maybe I am just too weird myself I don't know.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or even a character reflecting on how they've grown up.
Amagi
@Kaiser: As a child it was almost always the villains for me, or villain sidekicks. Probably because writing was more strict back then and there were too many things heroes weren't allowed to think, like or do. Well it's still a problem.
Vonter
Hi Score Girl has a character that reminds me of some aspects I'm not proud of my youth.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or a protaganist realizing all of their past romances were chosen because they thought they had to fit in by having such relationships based on expectations, when really they genuinely don't care about romance.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan Wasn't 30 centimeters per second like that? Welcome to NHK also explores some aspects of the young adult. Kimi ga Nozomu Eien is a soap opera but with adult characters in need of maturing to independent people.
Kaiser-Eoghan
So i can understand wanting to relate to something in fiction.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also none of these stories ever reflected or related to my adolescence.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I want to see a story about someone who is trying to adjust to their mid 20s or 30s after finally realizing that what they thought would never end (what they were familiar with in their youth) is over.
Anonymous3329534
What are the must-watch anime this season?
Kaiser-Eoghan
In alot of cases naturally the underwhelming leads, male or female are romcom/harem/coming of leads...which leads me to ask, I want an dramedy that I can actually relate to.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or it was one of the villains.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The idea of being a military commander, military leader, spy or an emperor or a more clever character appealed to me more.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Nor superpowered characters for the most part.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've probably said this before, and I don't know if this is just from western upbringing, but I never really self-inserted into wimpy characters because I could never imagine myself like that.
Vonter
All these in regards when a girl is the protagonist.
Vonter
1.- They rarely put interesting love interests. 2.- Few times stories aren't about seeking some internal even selfish desires. 3.- In anime at least females get along very easily while I get the impression it's more complicated IRL. 4.- I identify easily the romanticized power fantasy of men but I can't tell if I've seen that thing of women's.
Vonter
It's a dichotomy. Since I've seen both the worst and some of the best female character in manga and anime. Yet I can't shake the feeling female characters have unwritten restrictions to them.
Amagi
@Vonter: The new Promare trailer got me more interested in this. So it seems like the enemies are actually controlled by humans (that..guy/girl(?)). I also feel like the new blonde character will be a traitor or secret endboss or something.
Amagi
@Vonter: I also always had a problem with female characters, be it anime or whatever. Not because of social reasons or anything, I just found them unrelatable. But they got better over the years, especially in the west. Anime always had some series with ambitious female MCs though, it's just that a lot of anime are too selfinserty and these types prefer the safe route and do otome series.
Vonter
This movie is looking sick. It looks like it's using the same type of cel shading as the latest Guilty Gear game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzFFaLB6fHw
Vonter
I've read manga and webcomics with good or bad art, both can have great or very poor writing.
Vonter
I think scores are incredibly more subjective in terms of comics than other mediums. There is just a vast array of qualities, content, and distribution and exposure also makes for some works fall into obscurity.
Kaiser-Eoghan
or huge praise either.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I decided to read that yuri manga Octave, while I'd give it a higher score than they gave it, a myanimelist reviewer was fairly accurate in saying it really boils down to "another drama" but another review said it was "a quick, short and easy to read manga" I think those are reasonable takes, for better or worse this falls it the fine category and isn't really a huge black mark against it
Vonter
Interesting. I mean it's only a matter of time there are several other Isekai mangas that are either full female or gender bended. Also the Spider Isekai is also coming soon.
Animosh
Always nice to see an author reflect on and work on overcoming his limitations.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There was that recent article where sword art's writer brought up how he wrote his female chracters.
Animosh
Japan has a female prime minister in GITS too, although she's just a supporting character. And now that I think about it, the world of SAO's current arc has a female leader - in fact, her all-consuming ambition is basically her #1 trait.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But that is more of a case of female characters in tougher mode roles.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I suppose if I was making a list of female characters that stood out well for me I would put Motoko (ghost in the shell) or Balsa from Moribito.
Animosh
But I can think of some exceptions. Youjo Senki technically has a female lead, and for an older example there's Twelve Kingdoms. And outside of isekai you have ambitious female characters like Shurei (from Saiunkoku Monogatari) or Maude (from ACCA). But it's true that they're relatively rare.
Animosh
It is true that political ambition is a big part of some isekai though. Overlord is an obvious case, and there's also Log Horizon and the Slime series this season. And the MCs of these series are all males. But then, I suppose political power over others is something that is just more likely to appeal to men, especially in patriarchal Japan.
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