Posted on 31 July 2008 with categories: Anime Reviews


Time for another classic. If you’re one of those people who has only seen “modern” anime of the past decade, and are interested to see what the medium was like before the arrival of Evangelion, in the seventies and eighties (and perhaps the early nineties), then my top recommendation isn’t Gundam (at least, not until I’ve seen Zeta Gundam), but instead the very charming series of Mobile Police Patlabor.

The biggest reason for this is that while Mobile Suit Gundam caters for a specific audience, Mobile Police Patlabor seems to have something for nearly everyone: only if you need your series to have harems or slice of life (or gory horror, I guess), then you won’t find what you’re looking for. This series has mecha, it’s got drama, comedy, action, and a bit of romance and horror here and there, all packaged together quite neatly into 47 episodes.

It’s one of those very few series that tries to find a realistic use of mechas: in this series, they’re mostly used for construction and the police only use the mecha in order to solve conflicts for when these mechas go out of control. I’m surprised why I haven’t seen any newer mecha-series taking over the same idea, because it makes perfect sense. The main characters also aren’t anyone special: they’re no heroes whatsoever; they’re just a bunch of policemen who are in charge of these mechas. The epic “saving the country”-themes of the movies don’t return at all in the series, and everything is purposefully kept nice and down-to-earth.

But what really sells this series is its lovable cast of characters. Especially Captain Goto is an incredibly likable and unique character, but the rest of the crew also gets enough opportunities to shine throughout the series. The hot-headed Ota may be a strange character, but you’ll get used to him in no time. Noa, the most central character in this series, is quite likely the most stereotypical of the bunch, with her love for mechas (or labors, as they’re called in this series), great driving skills and naive nature, but she does end up being the most fleshed out and developed character of the entire cast, so she makes up for that.

Patlabor is an episodic series: every episode the crew handles a case (or does something other labor-related), where the focus is more on the characters than on the actual action, though the action itself is also very impressive. You won’t see any overpowered god-mode beams in this series, and fights are almost always based on strategies, rather than senseless bashing (although some characters in the series seem to forget this at times ^^;). The interesting thing is that this series joins Ooedo Rocket on the very short list of series whose dramatic climax isn’t at the end of the series. Instead, there’s just one arc in the series that takes up more than two episodes, with interesting villains and a tense atmosphere, and once that arc is done, the series just continues with episodic stories, and the final episodes instead go for some subtle character-development, instead of trying to end the series with a bang (but then again, with three movies and two OVAs, why should it?)

There aren’t much flaws in this series, but I’d love to have seen a bit more about division one (the division that works right next to the division of the main characters). We see hardly anything about them, with the result that the last episode hastily introduces a vital member of the division from out of nowhere, and acts like he’s been there all along. That was rather confusing.

Nevertheless, if you have the time to watch nearly fifty episodes, and have yet to see the Patlabor Movies and the television series, then I recommend going for the television-series first. The movies had their own excellent points, but it’s the series that brought the cast to life, and the movies clearly assumed that the viewer had already seen the television-series. The highlight of this series is definitely its cast of characters: it works great during the more serious moments of the series, but at the same time some the comedy-episodes are absolutely priceless. The comedy isn’t of the in-your-face type, like most slapsticks, but instead it requires proper build-up to work best. Patlabor may be nearly 20 year old, but it’s smart and it still packs a punch.

Storytelling: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 9/10
Posted on with categories: Monthly Summaries

The summer-season has always been the season of short and varied series, and in 2008, it’s no different. There’s a wide variety of genres in this relatively small season, only horror seems to be missing at first glance. So far, there are a number of potential classics lurking among them.

#30 (new) – Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu – (4/10) – Sorry, but I have no intention to continue watching this stereotype-filled rubbish.
#29 (new) – Koihime Musou – (6/10) – Nice, but this series is way too silly for me, considering its setting. Dropped.
#28 (new) – World Destruction – (6/10) – I gave this series a chance and watched four episodes. My reward was a bunch of lame uninteresting stories about a bunch of lame uninteresting characters. Heck, I doubt that the world is going to get destroyed at the end of the series anyway. Production IG, you disappoint me. Dropped.
#27 (new) – Yakushiji Ryouko no Kaiki Jikenbo – (6/10) – I’ve mentioned this before: the “I have no life so I’ll just reveal my evil plans to every random person who happens to drop by”-villains were a major letdown for me. This series is too much Yakushiji Ryouko and too little Kaiki Jikenbo. Dropped.
#26 (25) – Allison to Lillia – (6,5/10) – The only reason why I kept going with this series is to check whether the Lillia-part of the story would be worthwhile, but now that that time finally arrived, it’s still filled with predictable storylines, way too obvious foreshadowing and I’ve got no inclination to care about the cast. Wake me up if the final episodes do turn out good, but for now I don’t want to waste my time with this thing anymore. Dropped.
#25 (new) – Sekirei – (7,25/10) – Sekirei is overplaying coincidences too much: the main character accidentally gets knocked over by a Sekirei, they then go and fly and crash into a house with more Sekirei, he goes to work, only to find more Sekirei. What, is the entire city populated by Sekirei or something? In any case, I have to admit, though: it’s nothing special, but the characters are enjoyable to watch for now. Let’s hope that they’re actually going to develop.
#24 (new) – Slayers Revolution – (7,5/10) – After watching four episodes, it’s not like I’m eager to watch the rest of the Slayers-franchise. In fact, Gintama is currently doing everything this series has done so far, and 10 times better.
#23 (21) – Code Geass – Lelouch of the Rebellion – (7,5/10) – Code Geass’s strange overblown combination between brainless action and soap-opera antics continues. It’s enjoyable enough, although I do have to say that I’m really glad that Karen has been captured. It’s been really refreshing to watch all this airtime without her.
#22 (20) – Itazura na Kiss – (7,5/10) – The wedding came in way too fast, but episode sixteen was surprisingly enjoyable when compared to its previous episodes. Please keep this up for the rest of the series!
#21 (19) – Soul Eater – (7,5/10) – Ugh, it’s getting harder and harder for me to gather enthusiasm for this series. Come on, this is Bones! Make something interesting happen!
#20 (new) – Antique Bakery – (7,75/10) – Good to see that there’s finally a series about gay people that isn’t yaoi or yuri, and instead chooses to deal with the topic of how gays feel awkward in today’s society. Shirogumi (who also did Moyashimon) and Nippon Animation form an excellent combination for the Noitamina timeslot, and the cheese is hilarious as well.
#19 (new) – Birdy the Mighty Decode – (7,75/10) – I may have expected a bit too much from this series, considering the director and all. It’s interesting, but nothing amazing yet. I’ll withhold my judgment for now, though.
#18 (new) – Strike Witches – (7,75/10) – I’m not sure what’s going on here: the premise is obviously strange with the pants-less females, and yet it’s a strangely charming series that attempts to unify the European and Japanese cultures.
#17 (new) – Mahou Tsukai ni Taisetsu na Koto ~ Natsu no Sora – (8/10) – I’ve no idea where that fourth episode went, but nevertheless it’s a calming slice-of-life series with a number of very strange plot-twists. (Crashing truck, anyone?)
#16 (11) – Chi’s Sweet Home – (8,25/10) – I’m not sure why I switched to the subs for this series (probably because it was easier to keep up with the huge amounts of episodes), but now that these have stalled, it’s getting a bit lonely without Chi, which is a shame because the subs stopped right at the point where this show became hilarious again.
#15 (6) – Porfy no Nagai Tabi – (8,25/10) – The past month of Porfy no Nagai Tabi has been kind-of weak. The Sicily-arc just didn’t live up to the rest of the series.
#14 (14) – Wagaya no Oinarisama – (8,25/10) – Wagaya no Oinarisama continues its tradition of “it’s not supposed to be good, and yet it is”. There’s nothing much else to say, really.
#13 (new) – Mission-E – (8,25/10) – Doesn’t try to be the best, but nevertheless it’s a very enjoyable and fun series that doesn’t deserve the negligence it’s getting right now.
#12 (new) – Ultraviolet: Code 044 – (8,25/10) – The movie may have sucked beyond belief, but the anime manages to fix its mistake by putting a good emphasis on characterizations. The atmosphere is dark, and the fact that there haven’t been any fillers yet whatsoever is also a large plus.
#11 (12) – Blassreiter – (8,5/10) – Well, it seems that the creators had no intention to be less dramatic for the second half, but make no mistake: the action is getting quite good right now, with the characters developing and all. All the prejudices of this show being typical Gonzo-crap are unfounded, and Blassreiter has unfolded into an engaging series now that the teenaged emo is gone.

#10 (15) – Gintama – (8,5/10)

Gintama has been particularly funny this month, and especially episode 67 cracked me up, with its rather wrong parody of the “romantic interest walking in on an embarrassing situation”-trope that you usually find in harem series.

#9 (16) – Macross Frontier – (8,5/10)

Okay, it’s been a long wait, but the plot is finally catching up speed for the finale of Macross Frontier. Characters are starting to get developed, good, good.

#8 (new) – Bonen no Xamdou – (8,5/10)

Shows the beginnings of a classic. It’s done everything right so far: detailed animation, and storytelling, an addictive pacing, an interesting world. I’m very curious to see where the creators plan to go with this series.

#7 (new) – Blade of the Immortal – (8,5/10)

Yes, I’m biased, but I don’t care! This series rocks! The soundtrack is excellent in my opinion, and the first two episodes showed the typical style of Beetrain-storytelling.

#6 (17) – Telepathy Shoujo Ran – (8,5/10)

You know, the more I watch this series, the more I like its adorable cast of characters. Sure, it may have its flaws, but Midori makes up for all of them.

#5 (new) – Natsume Yuujin-Chou – (8,75/10)

A really peaceful summer-like atmosphere and engaging stories to keep the viewer busy. My favourite of the summer season so far.

#4 (2) – Himitsu ~ The Revelation – (8,75/10)

The past few episodes of Himitsu have been either excellent or missed the mark. The series may have its lesser stories, but the good ones really make up for it.

#3 (10) – Nijuu Mensou no Musume – (9,25/10)

July has been a sensational month for Nijuu Mensou no Musume, with just about everything in this series hitting new heights. Whether this series can keep up the same quality for the rest of the episodes remains to wonder, but I’d love to find out.

#2 (8) – RD Sennou Chousashitsu – (9,25/10)

I’m trying to find a good way to describe the past few episodes of RD, but I can’t. Instead, I’ll just vaguely summarize it with one word: unique.

#1 (1) – Kaiba – (9,5/10)

My three favourite 12 or 13-episode series are without a doubt Haibane Renmei, Hi no Tori and Kaiba. I’m not quite sure in what order they go, but one thing is clear: Kaiba has been an amazing ride, from start to finish.

Posted on 30 July 2008 with categories: Bonen no Xamdou



Short Synopsis: Obligatory “I’m not going to cooperate with you”-episode.
Highlights: This was an obvious building-up episode, so nothing much stood out.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10
Well, it had to happen sometimes. You can see this type of episode in many different series, where the main character, as stubborn as he is, yells at everyone in his new environment and wants to go home. It’s not the most exciting episode, but it is essential for proper build-up and character-building, which is why it’s used so often.

This episode did make use of its 20 minutes by giving a proper introduction to the crew of the postal service ship. It still remains a mystery why Nakiami is on board, or why they involve themselves with these huge battles, but at least the most important crewmembers were fleshed out. Meanwhile, at the camp of the antagonists, the major villain (or at least someone who looks like one) turns out to be some kind of war hero, who survived a huge war, 17 years ago. Their role in this story still seems a mystery, though.

What intrigues me is the high amount of attention to Akiyuki’s friends, who he left behind. If Akiyuki really is going to work for a postal ship, then that means that he’s not going to see them again, and yet they’re really well-fleshed out characters. What could the creators have in mind for them? Don’t tell me that that girl is going to follow the airship when she receives the letter that’s about to be sent to Akiyuki’s parents?

Posted on with categories: RD Sennou Chousashitsu



Short Synopsis: Okay, so last week’s preview was lying: this episode wasn’t about Souta and Holon at all. Instead, it’s about Minamo’s family.
Highlights: What could not be awesome about Minamo’s divided family coming back together?
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,5/10
What a charming episode! Minamo and Souta’s parents and grandparents have always been vaguely mentioned here and there, but they never really took the central focus in this series, apart from perhaps that one episode that was dedicated to Souta’s father. In this episode, Minamo’s grandmother AND mother come to visit their offspring for one night, and enjoy a rare family reunion where all five members of the family are together.

I guess that this too is a commentary to today’s Japanese society, which through its workaholic attitude has many families that are separated from each other, and I can imagine that sixty years into the future, where transport has evolved even more, this wouldn’t be any different, and like Minamo’s parents, couples often live apart from each other because of their jobs.

And at the same time, this episode fleshed out Miamo and Souta even more, by showing what their parents look like. And damn, Minamo’s grandmother looks so different from what I expected. I can’t remember whether we actually saw a shot of her in the second episode, but I was really expecting some thin old lady with grey hair and all, and instead she turns out to be a much more similar to Minamo, and much younger-looking than I imagined her to be. At the same time, the creators also manage to sneak in a reference about Kushima having a sister. Am I the only one curious about her, and what she’d look like?

And damn, the preview for the next episode intrigues me. There’s some kind of deserted ruins in some jungle that suddenly started operating again. Could this go further on the Eliza-subplot of a few episodes back?

Posted on 29 July 2008 with categories: Mission-E



Short Synopsis: It’s character-building time when Chinami and Maori pay a visit to the research facility where Kotarou works.
Highlights: A Cow?
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10
Fun episode. It’s nice to see Kotarou back in detail, and at the same time this episode also showed the difference between Chinami and Maori in the ways that they grew up. It’s very much like Telepathy Shoujo Ran: Chinami had an understanding family, who supported her through her problems, while Maori probably had much less luck, and had to endure strange looks from her classmates by herself. Chinami always tried to stay in the background (probably also transferred schools here and there), while Maori’s powers became infamous through the entire school.

It’s interesting how Chinami is pretty much an airhead, both in Code-E and Mission-E, while Maori has a much more down-to-business personality, even though they were just as shy when they first appeared. Kotarou seems pretty much the same as he ever was, perhaps a bit maturer than what we saw of him in Code-E. He really does form a cute couple with Chinami, even though they’re apart very often. In any case, I’m glad that the creators made no attempts at creating another love-triangle with Maori. There was enough love-tension in Code-E, and I’m glad to see that Mission-E’s focus is about something entirely different, and knows it.

The new bad guy Kiriku in this episode was… interesting. His biggest purpose was most likely to flesh out the yellow-haired bad guy whose name I forgot at the moment. The latter has a sense of business, and doesn’t like to act when there’s nothing to gain for him, while the former likes to eliminate any potential threats for the future by force. In a way, this series likes to play with different characters who are put in the same situations: there’s Chinami and Yuma, Chinami and Maori, Kiriku and the other guy and the Brinberg-siblings in a way too.

Speaking of which, Adol (at least, I think that was her name) appeared this episode in a coma. I remember how in the first season, they were a great source of comic relief while trying to overcome all the cultural differences, and I’m really interested to find out what she’ll be like when she wakes up from this coma, especially since she lost her brother just like that in the first season.

Posted on with categories: Natsume Yuujin-Chou



Short Synopsis: A haunted building-episode.
Highlights: Natsume’s relation to his classmates continues to develop.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,5/10
Seriously, this series gets better and better with every episode, and I already considered it as one of the highlights of the summer-season. I’m really not sure how the creators did it, but their sense of characterization is amazing. But then again, this was to be expected, considering the director: both Baccano and Jigoku Shoujo had a huge cast of characters, with nearly every one of them having its own identity and likable from the start. So, what happens when you assign a director who is excellent at characterizations on a story that lives because of its characters?

This episode shows the most hostile Ayakashi so far, who kidnaps every one of Natsume’s classmates when they go and explore a strange abandoned building. He doesn’t even care about getting his name back, and is acting all out of some sort of grudge (if I understood correctly, it’s some kind of hate for people). But what caught my attention the most is another one of Natsume’s classmates. We don’t see the black-haired guy in this episode, but there’s a girl who has discovered that he can see spirits, because she noticed how he keeps talking to people from out of nowhere

On a side-note: this series is without a doubt the hardest to understand from the new season, simply because those Ayakashi keep speaking in some strange ancient dialect that doesn’t show up in the dictionary that I’m using. Japanese already is hard enough to understand without some random dialect thrown into it.

Posted on 28 July 2008 with categories: Blade of the Immortal



Short Synopsis: A girl whose parents were murdered asks Manji to help her with her revenge.
Highlights: If you weren’t already convinced that this was a Bee-Train series, then this episode will.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10
Okay, so I think that it was pretty obvious that I’d end up blogging this series. After years, I’m still not sure what’s so appealing about their distinctive style, and yet I absolutely love it. I haven’t read one page of the manga so far, though I might read it once this series is finished. I believe that there were some changes made here and there that made the manga-readers overall disappointed, but for now, I won’t care about that.

In any case, it turns out that the frantic pacing of the first episode was just used by means of an introduction. I should have known: Bee-Train really likes to kick off its series as mysteriously as possible, only to go for a slow pacing with episode two. We’ve seen it in El Cazador, .Hack//Sign, Tsubasa Chronicle, and probably some more that I forgot about now. Still, a slow pacing is really what fits Bee-Train the best. It really allows the story to take its time and the characters to develop properly.
I also keep getting impressed by the music, and it’s surprisingly varied. One track bears a clear reference to Tenpou Ibun Ayakashi Ayashi, while the next is a spunky modern jazzy piece of music, the next is a quiet harp song, the next gives off horror-vibes. Kou Outani really was given a lot of freedom for this series. I must say that I really like the vocals that were used. Call it wailing, but I think that whoever is singing it has a great voice.

Also, what’s up with the episode count for this series? MyAnimeList is the only site which has this series listed at 13 episodes, and yet neither AniDB nor Animenewsnetwork, which strike me as the more reliable, have anything about the total amount of episodes. And yet, there’s also talk going on about a second season. In any case, next week there’s another hiatus, but after that, the releases seem to continue weekly instead of semi-weekly.

Posted on 27 July 2008 with categories: Anime Reviews, Kaiba


Welcome and say hello to one of the best anime of 2008, and along with Haibane Renmei and Hi no Tori, my favourite anime of only 12 or 13 episodes long. Kaiba is the product of director Masaaki Yuasa, who was the one behind Kemonozume, Cat Soup and Mind Game and it shows the result of when an already excellent director learns from his mistakes.

Kaiba is very much an experimental anime, which tries to be different from the stuff you usually see. The character-designs may look childish and simple, but make no mistake: this storyline isn’t afraid to show adult themes at all, and the perfect example of why you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. It’s about a futuristic world with the fascinating concept in which people’s memories can be stored in chips and placed from one body to the other. The series smartly spends its first half fleshing out and playing with this concept, so that the viewer feels at home inside the setting, only for the second half to kick in with the real meat of the series, where the storyline keeps spiralling to the point of going out of control. The final episode is indeed one of chaos.

The setting may be already an incredibly imaginative one, what really won me over for this series is its sense of storytelling. It’s hard to explain, but if there ever was some kind of x-factor for anime, then Kaiba would have it. This is one series that knows exactly how to progress a mystery-storyline: lots of random flashbacks, in order to flesh out both the storyline and characters, a back-story that goes way beyond the “person x killed person y in the past” and lots of different hints to keep you guessing.

This also really helps fleshing out the characters, and the interesting twist that they keep changing bodies (made possible because of the setting) puts them in interesting different spotlights. The romance can be incredibly sweet when it’s in its element and even the villains get their own piece of development.

Overall, Kaiba is definitely recommended if you’re into experimental, mystery or science fiction anime. The only bad thing about it is that the plot isn’t the most solid one, so don’t expect everything about the setting to be fully explained by the end. Nevertheless, Kaiba is an masterpiece that makes excellent use of its limited time of only twelve episodes, and it has been my top pick of the past spring season ever since it started.

Storytelling: 10/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 9/10
Setting: 10/10
Posted on with categories: Kaiba



Short Synopsis: Neiro tries to tell Kaiba his secret as Kaiba and Warp go out of control.
Highlights: Not all questions answered, but this series somehow gets away with it…
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,5/10
And so it’s unfortunately over. It was to be expected that not every question would be answered (like, what’s up with the planet that Kaiba lives on? It turns out, only the memory of Popo got killed, but how did that happen? and in this episode Kaiba also pulls out a number of random powers that would have been better if they were introduced earlier, so I think that one extra episode would have been sufficient to answer these questions, but still this was a pretty awesome episode.

Masaaki Yuasa clearly intended this episode to go out of control and become something surreal, in a way, it’s in the same style of the ending of Kemonozume, which also came from out of nowhere. It was obviously not the best episode of Kaiba, but at the same time it was very much fun to watch. The surreal parts in this episode were definitely worth watching.

So, in the end, the thing that Neiro discovered about Kaiba was that his mother’s memory was stuffed in the ostrich, as a punishment. At the same time, probably the cutest thing about this episode was this unexpected romance between Hyohyo and the memory-guy. ^^;

At this point, I’m not sure which series to call better: this one or Shion no Ou. They were both absolutely fantastic in their own ways, and without a doubt the best series of 2008. They both had fantastic storytelling, while Shion no Ou had incredible characters, while Kaiba had an incredibly imaginative setting.

Posted on with categories: Anime Reviews, Genius Party


It’s back to the surreal with Masaaki Yuasa (Kaiba, Kemonozume, Mind Game)’s addition to Genius Party. He probably wrote this before he started working on Kaiba, and it’s very apparent that he wrote this in a stage where his distinctive sense of style was maturing. Happy Machine can be very well seen as “Kaiba’s testing bed”, where Masaaki experimented a bit with different ideas and animation techniques (you can see his fascination with strange toilets here as well).

Happy Machine is the strangest addition to Genius Party so far, aside from perhaps the first movie Genius Party. It’s again a short story that knows its length and tries to play with it. What really stands out is the storytelling: it’s basically an adventure of a boy, of only two years old in a fantastic environment, and it’s very interesting to see the detailed ways that the creators come up with to keep this baby busy.

The problem with this movie is the titular character, because he doesn’t really feel like a two or three year old boy. He misses the feeling of loneliness and the hopelessness of being away from trusted people, even though throughout this short movie, he’s got more than enough reasons to feel lonely. Nevertheless, this movie has succeeded in creating an impact, which was exactly what I’m looking for with Genius Party’s short movies.

Storytelling: 9/10
Characters: 7/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 8/10
CHANGE USERNAME
AidanAK47
Guess we can put that down as one of the most important things a critic needs. Self Awareness.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I won't deny having an inflated sense of worth but Nostalgia blindness? You are reaching man.
Anonymous777074
Just like you :)
AidanAK47
Anyway I never heard of this guy and he seems like the usually case of Nostalgia blindness and inflated sense of worth. Nothing really worth concerning ourselves about.
AidanAK47
"How can I be pretentious when I mean everything I say?" Oh silly silly fool. Being an idiot doesn't mean you can't be pretentious.
Kaiser Eoghan
I bring him up because I feel he'd be more controversial than Tenka seiha/aroduc or digibro.
Kaiser Eoghan
Roriconfan/thatanimesnob/Peter Malousis: [link src="https://www.youtube.com/user/ThatAnimeSnob
http://youtube.wikia.com/wiki/ThatAnimeSnob
https://myanimelist.net/forum/?topicid=1483389"]
SuperMario
I don't know who would that be either Kaiser? A V-blogger?
Lenlo
Who?
Kaiser Eoghan
We talk about digibro on here, yet we never talk about Rorico.
Anonymous774043
I agree
Anonymous773640
Shitcunt is the greatest anime villain of all time. End of argument.
Lenlo
Best villain was clearly JJ. JJ is actually the best character for every category.
Lenlo
@SuperMario, I just felt there was some social context to the discussion with the boss that I missed.
Kaiser Eoghan
Bah, haven't you heard, the best villain category was for the dictionary in Lost passage, must have been bastard-hard effort getting that compiled =P
AidanAK47
To sum that up, don't bully my waifu or I will end you.
AidanAK47
@Mario, She only killed him once and tortured him for information once. Both times because he had something which showed he had a connection to the witch. Besides, the anime mainly showed off her good points but she still has a crushing inferiority complex and a rather delicate mindset.
SuperMario
Oh I have one. How about Lovepon? lol
SuperMario
@Topgavin: it was sarcasm actually, if we do it again next year we might cut down some categories. But I totally agree that we're lacking of good villains. Biba and that teacher are the worst as they actually dragged their shows down.
Topgavin
Honestly though there's been a real lacking of good villains last year. I hear some guy from Jojo was pretty good, but other than that they've either been okay or lackluster. Makes you wonder how FMA:B managed to get so many villians right in so many ways when shows usually fail to get even 1 half as good.
Topgavin
@Supermario Biba or Teacher-dude from Erased surely...
SuperMario
Maybe we should include the best villain next time, haha. I honestly don't know who to pick...
SuperMario
oh Rem, that demon girl who tried to kill Subaru many times over. Why is she the best girl again?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I watched Moonlight last night in cinema and it was great. I had high expectation for that and it pretty much delivered. Also Janelle Monae was so freaking hot.
SuperMario
OMG, that 3rd episode of Rakugo was so greattttt. @Lenlo: don't need to understand the meaning of the rant thou, Yotaro doesn't understand either
Kaiser Eoghan
Think of the fine children/breeding stock Aidan and rem would offspring =P
Kaiser Eoghan
Dye their hair, make things confusing ;)
AidanAK47
@Anon, hahahaha, cool joke bro.....
...............................Don't make me destroy you.
Lenlo
The one with red hair of course
Anonymous765953
rem? who's that?
Lenlo
Having read the books, theres afew inconsistencies and I dont like some of the choices for actors.
Kaiser Eoghan
*couldn't
Kaiser Eoghan
Buh buh but Aiiiidan you still have the koe no katachi movie and thaaats kyoani =P But lol phantom world was so poor I couldn't get past the second episode. A shame that they could go with the darker spin the author ended up apparently going for in later volumes.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, I am currently eh on it as well. Only at the second episode so far. I find it interesting but it has a lot of things that turn me off.
Lenlo
7 YEARS I SAT ON THAT BOAT!

Still havnt finished Flip Flappers. I like it, its pretty, each episode is different, but I can barely tell what the over-arching narrative is and thats a big deal to me
Lenlo
ITS REAL
Lenlo
BOAT TIER
Lenlo
@Aidan, Series of Unfortunate Events was eh. I wasnt a big fan of the TV adaptation, though I did like Neil Patrick Harris
Kaiser Eoghan
@Lenlo: BOAT TIER lmao.
Kaiser Eoghan
Thats why I LOVED flippflappers so much, where else can I get THAT anywhere, totally its own thing/beast.
Lenlo
My big ones for the year were easily Rakugo and Re:Zero. Disappointments, biggest one is Berserk. Ive been following it for years, have the entire series on my shelf, and I watched it like a captain going down with his ship
Kaiser Eoghan
At the same time well, yes its still good to see a non-highschool story in ANYTHING.
Kaiser Eoghan
Ah, you see I don't really award points to an anime doing something unique to anime, I judge by all mediums as a group/whole. 91 days may be a mafia drama, kabaneri may be a zombie show but theres already plenty of those in the world elsewhere.
Kaiser Eoghan
I could see myself getting some oldskool charm out of alderman if I watched it. I was waiting for yuri on ice to be dubbed. Drifters for all its problems was some of the most fun I've had in ages.
Kaiser Eoghan
The only thing I saw that I truly abhorred though was the new shinkai film.
Kaiser Eoghan
Most of the other stuff I didn't really bother watching. Its pointless for me to shit on about 91 days and re:zero because I was guaranteed to dislike both before seeing either.
Kaiser Eoghan
Biggest disappointments for me were erased , berserk and joker game. Whereas my surprise was lost passage. My favourites of the year were flippflappers and Rakugo. I wanted Kabaneri and dimesion w to save anime and bring back some oldskool charm but that didn't happen.
AidanAK47
Alright I spent over an hour formatting this thing and now I am knackered. Readers, this summery is over 23 pages long so be prepared as this thing is pretty huge. Don't say you were not warned.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, Watch it. I bet it will be up your alley.
Kaiser Eoghan
Thats a problem with adaptations, put a voice on certain characters and it can become irritating.
Kaiser Eoghan
And to be fair on scums wish, that it deals with the sex bit in a teen story, well that makes it more daring and thats points for it.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: Largely stayed away from that series as I assumed it was for young children.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: Additionally the relationships in that manga got too convoluted, the comedy stands out worse in the anime too. Still though I DO dig the idea behind the show of two kids who are in a fake relationship.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, you think that's hard to watch try watching Netflix's A series of unfortunate events. Because boy do I want to brutally murder the banker and his family. That may sound severe to you but trust me, you will feel likewise.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: You were right about it being harder to watch scums wish than read it. I want to hit the twin tails girl with a hatchet.
Kaiser Eoghan
I'm laughing now remembering an old ANN review where they stated golgo 13 was a stress reliever for 30 something Japanese office workers, I get that so much more now lol
Kaiser Eoghan
But seriously violence in fiction, anime/manga included is so damn therapeutic.
Kaiser Eoghan
As such I genuinely was able to enjoy the new M night shaylman flick lol
Kaiser Eoghan
Venting here largely because I can, I now imagine the teenage/twenty something audience members at horror/thriller films as the victims in the films, makes it more tolerable to deal with their existence in the cinema.
Lenlo
I cant help but feel theres some cultural aspect I am missing to the Rakugo rant scene. Makes me sad.
Lenlo
Rakugo, continues to be great and gets another time skip. Im always surprised by how engrossing it is just listening to these people talk.
Lenlo
Makes me sad, just like Berserk. Got an entire shelf dedicated to it but its just so slow. stupid boat.
Lenlo
Vagabond was phenomenal, but its been on hiatus for years now hasnt it
Kaiser Eoghan
....well without spoiling towards the middle of that rakugo episode and all throughout during that middle part, my opinion on Yotaro's character went far up.
Kaiser Eoghan
Struggling to remember the name of that josei samurai manga from the 90s (or earlier 2000s), had a gender bending theme.
Kaiser Eoghan
I've already read kenshin and vagabond, I loved shigurui death frenzy and sword of the stranger but found samurai champloo uneven. Theres a kagemusha manga but I haven't read it and I've yet to see/read blade of the immortal.
Kaiser Eoghan
At a glance I'll go against the grain and say I think demi-chan is funnier than konosuba, going on one episode of each.
I've been watching a fare share of samurai films in the last two years and lately so I'm open to wathing more anime/reading manga dealing with samurai.
SuperMario
Hand Shakers, how I love to watch it jumping off the cliff. This show contains lines like "I don't understand... even if I did understand... but I don't understand." It isn't a dialogue that we encounter too often I'm sure.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Sounds good to me. With me covering Little Witch Academia, Saga of Tanya the evil and Rakugo this season is well covered.
SuperMario
so I've decided to blog 3-gatsu, Scum's Wish and ACCA this season. A bit worry about the latter as I still don't have much to talk about that. Let's try it and see what happens; I say
SuperMario
Okay, I'm not hot on Onihei this week, as if the main theme about these two episodes were "people can be corrupted" then I'm not buying it. ACCA, on the other hand, was still very solid of building up the world and its big events to come.
AidanAK47
I have played all the big roguelikes and found they have the same problem. I argee on procedural generation. Even if the map is different every time you are essentailly going through the same rooms and doing the same things.
Masky
Though to be honest, I don't like procedural(or designed room and then game connects them randomly) games much. I much enjoy hand designed dungeons since I rarely play games through more than once anyway so roguelike's appeal of "Every time you play it through its different!" doesn't appeal to me much and hand designed dungeons are much more memorable
Masky
Can't really comment further on that since I don't know which roguelikes you have played, and neither I have played gungeon so I don't know if its badly designed to the point you can't do anything if rng says so. Though I guess there is nothing wrong about liking luck based games, if roguelike in question is truly unbeatable if rng says so, well, its really badly designed one if you ask me.
AidanAK47
Take my last run. Made it up to the fourth floor. Got plenty of guns but none were really useful. Even then ran out of ammo for all of them and the game was cheap about giving out ammo. Plenty of money but shops with nothing worth buying. Over 5 heart containers but no goddamn health. Died on the boss because I rolled out of a bullet into another bullet. Pretty much unavoidable.
AidanAK47
@Masky, that's the theory but in pretty much every roguelike I played its not the case. If the RNG decides you are going to have a bad time then you are going to have a bad time. Skill can only bring you so far. I have played this game for 7 hours and I know I could have finished it in 2. Only thing stopping me is a dice roll.
Masky
Like, the thing with roguelikes is that they can get easier/harder depending on luck, but well done one should be completable even without any upgrades at all if you are skilled enough.
Masky
Thats not the really case with roguelikes though, unless game design is bad and includes insta kill traps and such that are unavoidable if you are unlucky
AidanAK47
I hate roguelikes. Been playing enter the Gungeon and I just lost all patience with it. Getting real tired of my victory being decided by a RNG. It never feels satisfying to finish a roguelike because I know my victory was determined by pure luck.
AidanAK47
So we got to rely on fansubs for it when it's airing.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Nope. I think because netflix only puts up full seasons they are only planning to put it up when it's finished airing. Or when it's dubbed.
SuperMario
But how does the Netflix thing work? So of I have a Netflix account I can watch the show weekly?
SuperMario
@Aidan: that's a dumb way to do things really because unless you watch the show weekly, everyone gonna forget that it even exist. Just look at Re-Life last year
Lenlo
thought*. Words are hard.

Eventually found the actual first ep though and enjoyed it.
Lenlo
Was funny. I tried to find the first Ep for Little Witch, found original short made afew years ago, watched it and though "This is very similar to the original... Whats new".
AidanAK47
Little witch is one of the best shows this season and yet I can't get subtitles because Netflix doesn't release shows weekly. Motherf*cker.
Lenlo
Ore Monogatari I enjoyed. It was a nice romance that actually explored what happens after the confession. Also the 2 leads are just precious.
Lenlo
Alright but unmemorable seems like a good summation.
SuperMario
@Lenlo: one good thing about Seiren is if you don't like this romance, the whole thing gonna reset after episode 4 so there's a chance that you might end up like it. Agreed that the comedy wasn't very good. Alright but unmemorable
SuperMario
@Topgavin: I watched like first 3 episodes and stopped because I didn't have much time there, but I enjoyed what I saw. A well-written and endearing show in my book
Topgavin
Has anyone here watched Ore Monogatari before? Because in the 4 years I've watched anime, I've never heard of it (I guess it did come out 2 years ago) and yet it's turning out to be one of my favorite shows. Always great going into a show expecting nothing and getting pleasantly surprised.
AidanAK47
Only one more impression to go. Should have it up tomorrow.
Lenlo
Im really not feeling Seiren. Its "comedy" isnt for me and I just dont find it very enjoyable to watch so far. Im curious if it gets any better but 2 episodes in it just isnt that good.
HelghastKillzone
That ending scene is an entire side-story compressed into that. Don't expect anymore of it from here on out as the it sticks to ruthless military/fantasy pretty well.
LookingForKeys
@Topgavin I think it was good, making it the second episode. That way the first set up the world the story will be in, and showed how much of a monster the "little girl" really is right at the end, and then made ep.2 the explanation. Nothing against Tanya trying to rip "God" a new one.
That after-credits scene, though...
SuperMario
Hmm, as much as I like Seiren's omnibus format, it doesn't turn out really hot this second episode. Demi-chan, on the other hand, still maintains its endearing tone. Might blogging Demi-chan instead
Topgavin
Yeah, that second episode was much better than the first. Dunno why they didn't start with that to be honest, waste of an opportunity for a good hook episode. The voice for the main girl still sounds weird to me though; I get it's supposed to sound weird because it symbolizes 'her' being out of place and her personality and body being a mismatch, but it'll certainly take some getting used to.
AidanAK47
Youjo Senki, now we are talking. Like Helghast said, Did the god scene way better than the LN and manga. Made it less comedic and more intimidating.
Lenlo
Oh man that Rakugo intro. Not sure what to think, but first time seeing it I liked it
Kaiser Eoghan
I sort of like good will hunting because I kind of saw a bit of myself in Damon's character when I watched it ages ago.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Remaking psycho and ruining the shower scene, for shame van sant, for shame.
Kaiser Eoghan
Its easy to ripoff some obscure thing though and get away with it. The dogtooth director essentially stole an old Mexican film to make that.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: yeah, that following some guys from behind like they were on a RPG games, which I think actually fit with the tones of Elephant. I have such mixed feeling with Gus van Sant too. Don't really think he's a great director.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Although Istvan Szabo is probably a little more well known for that Mephisto film that updates the Faust story. Zoltan Fabri's the fifth seal is a very thought provoking war movie.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I remember seeing a film documentary that featured Gus van sant in one section, they showed clips of tarrs films, Sant ripped of the cinematography and stole the style from some British short film to make Elephant.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: agree on the other Hungarian filmmakers, I don't know much about them either.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Scorsese's Silence was a big comeback. I really really emotionally connect with spiritual crisis stories.
SuperMario
@kaiser: yep, definitely check wreckmeister down. Althought I admit that watching his 2-hour plus films will feel like 5-hour anyways
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I'm more tolerant of darker teenage/coming of age films/stories. Les Demons was a big surprise.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Though its kind of frustrating, I do think Tarr probably takes attention away from other hungarian filmakers because no-body knows who the hell the others are.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Man, wreckmeister was so visually arresting I started getting dreams from it.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I would consider Tarr to be kind of a poor mans Janco, Angelopolus and Tarkvosky rolled into one. I don't entirely "get" wreckmeister and man from London but they are great atmospheric mood piece experiences.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I had been wanting to watch Belar Tarr's Turin Horse and Werckmeister Harmonies for so long now. Well, Fat Girl is shocking haha, but I'm normally drawn into those kind of films anyway.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Margaret took like 5,6 years to release because he couldn't cut it down in the way he wanted. The final cut if I remembered correctly was edited by Martin Scorsese
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Only a HDcam for moonlight now.
Kaiser Eoghan
I looks like my lineup is witch academia, rakugo and youjo senki, well the most latter one until I get bored.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I sense a directors cut for manchester, it feels like it need another 30 minutes.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: right up my valley. Watch Kenneth Lonergan's previous works Magaret and You Can Count on Me. Magaret is very messy but have a raw dialogue and interactions as well
SuperMario
Now the first episodes are over, I will keep on covering 3-gatsu, as for the other twos atm I have 3 options: 1) full romance/anti-romance high school Seiren/Scum's Wish. 2) slice-of-life moe monster girls Demi-chan/Maid Dragon and 3) Mature,dark Onihen/Acca (which although I like them I don't have much to talk about).If you guys have any preference on which shows you like covered then let me know
Kaiser Eoghan
@Helghast: At this point I'm watching youjo senki as an entertaining guilty pleasure.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Too many reboots upcoming, will wait for the dvds instead. I want to explore more of manchester by the sea's director's work. I also want to finally get more into Bela Tarr's stuff.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I was rather shocked by A Ma souer/fat girls final act. Scenes with the Italian in the bedroom were initially creepy.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: it's a nice review Kaiser, a bit jealous with you that you've seen those 3 films which are touted as the best films of 2016. Also Fat Girl, haha, I love that movie.
Kaiser Eoghan
Poor yotaro =< you have so much stuff going down on you =<
HelghastKillzone
Youjo Senki episode was so good today. That revamped scene with God just fitted so right.
AidanAK47
A official release of that game in the west is apparently coming but it's been a few years and not much news about it.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: Ah yes that was the one.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, Had to think for a moment on that one but I think I was talking about this. https://vndb.org/v3144
Kaiser Eoghan
Now I'd hardly consider myself a studio trigger fan, but I watched the first witch academia episode there, it was actually kind of fun, got the same reaction from me as flipflappers did, that magical, special feeling.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I also, of interest reviewed Kenneth Lonegrans new film: http://letterboxd.com/shao_liu_ringon/film/manchester-by-the-sea/
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Moonlight got some feels out of me though it could of been more, it ends abruptly and with 20 extra minutes they could have spent a bit more time on each section of his life.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I checked out lala land, ending was very well executed, one of three scenes in the film that were impressive visually. The whole thing looked pretty and Gosling and Stone had some decent chemistry. Although it didn't resonate emotionally as strongly as the musicals of Jacques Demi did.
Kaiser Eoghan
MOM I want aiyoku no eustia and I want it now.
Kaiser Eoghan
I've never heard of himawari or tokyo babel. The hellsing comparison at least interests me in dies irae. What was the name of that visual novel again that was coming out soon, Aidan you described it as "And Kaiser would love it because its supposed to be really fucked up".
Kaiser Eoghan
I vaguely remember the anime for 11 eyes, it was very forgettable, even the voice acting was poor, hated the childhood friends and the pacing was poor, those black knight things were kind of interesting though.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: You'll have to add me onto the list of those unsatisfied with the ever 17 writer, I read one of those games and felt it was a bunch of interesting bait that never paid off.
AidanAK47
Anyway I plan on doing a review of 11eyes here when I finish it.
AidanAK47
Can't say I was a fan of Ever17. That was a really good twist but when it came to explaining it their was a lot of contrived development. Generally not a fan of the writer. Looseboy, Ryukishi, Gen and Nasu are more my kinda thing
AidanAK47
@Anon, it is nice that so many VNs are on steam but I wish they wouldn't be stupid with the whole no adult content thing. Not so much for myself but to prevent idiots from writing negitives reviews because the game doesn't have sex. VNs can grip you in a way anime simply can't and while they require pathence and time those can be some pretty powerful stories.
Anonymous678956
@Aidan, I am so happy steam's so VN-friendly now. I think it's a very good type of media. Like anime, it has nice visuals, music and some movement but also the inner monologue and text amount of books. It's the perfect combination. Plus, the routes, which are often puzzle pieces and PoVs you have to go through to understand the whole story. True routes like the one of Ever17 blew my mind.
AidanAK47
Hopefully the two VNs I bought of steam turn out better. Tokyo Babel is supposed to be alright and I heard really good things about Himawari.
AidanAK47
I am about a third of the way through the game and really not much of worth has happened. The concept is interesting but the execution is sorely lacking.
AidanAK47
I went in expecting it to be a mixed bag and it's pretty below my expectations. It's just not really well written and the protagonist is a moron. THere isn't really routes and instead you are pretty much stuck with his childhood friend as the main love interest. Problem with that is her character begins and ends with loving the main.
Anonymous675376
@Aidan, damn. 11Eyes is on my reading list as well. Although I almost expected it to not be as good as I thought it'd be (back then). Guess I would have enjoyed it if I was able to read it while the (shitty) adaption aired, maybe I have seen/read too many series by now. Guess I'll still give it a try some day though.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I haven't heard the OST or watched the intro video. I only know it be reputation and have decided to walk into it as blind as I can. Still slightly worried as I was somewhat looking forward to reading 11Eyes for a couple of years and now that I am reading it it's well...not good.
Anonymous675376
@Aidan, same here. I was waiting years for this, since I saw the intro video for the first time. Also, that OST!
HelghastKillzone
Youjo Senki is already leagues better than Izetta. It's going to be top anime of forever and ever. (maybe not)
AidanAK47
And finally Dies Irae is funded. May actually be able to play and finish the game before the anime airs. If the hype is real behind this baby it could be a new personal favorite Visual Novel of mine. Already looking promising with it being like a cross between Hellsing and Fate/Stay Night. Two things I most certainly like.
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