Posted on 31 August 2008 with categories: Monthly Summaries

August has definitely been an interesting and at the same time strange month. I keep seeing everywhere that the past Summer Season has disappointed, but I just can’t agree with those statements. Sure, there’s no absolute masterpiece airing now that Kaiba ended, but there are actually lots and lots of smaller series that are well-written and have proven to be very enjoyable. The result of that is a very bizarre top-10 series for me this month, and I don’t think I’ve ever had to compile a stranger one than the one you see here. This season is full of series that, at first sight don’t seem to stand any chance for success, and yet turn out to be strangely memorable…

#28 (22) – Chocolate Underground – (3,25/10) – Okay, this has to go down as one of the worst endings ever. It’s not even the case where it’s so bad it’s good, this is just plain bad. You’ll understand once you see the bloody climax of this thing.
#27 (new) – Kaitou Tenshi Twin Angel – (7/10) – An OVA that wasn’t bad, but it was so inoffensive that makes me wonder what the creators originally wanted to do with it.
#26 (23) – Code Geass – Lelouch of the Rebellion – (7,25/10) – Oh god. Episode 20 felt like the writers gave up completely. It’s a shame, it looked like the characters were finally (after nearly fifty episodes) getting some interesting development, only for that pathetic excuse of an episode to turn up. Anya’s twist came from bloody nowhere, and it felt like the creators suddenly remembered “oh, wait, she’s still there”. I also love how this guy pokes fun at the obvious holes in that episode.
#25 (22) – Slayers Revolution – (7,5/10) – Well, at least the plot became a bit more interesting, but after nine episodes I’m still not sold on Slayers yet. I also wonder, since so many people say that this series is exactly like the other seasons of Slayers: what exactly was it that the creators wanted to prove by making yet another one of them? If it’s going to be exactly the same, couldn’t they just have shown a rerun of the original Slayers instead?
#24 (24) – Itazura na Kiss – (7,5/10) – The best thing about Itazura na Kiss is really the character-development. Never in a shoujo series have we progressed so far into the lead characters’ life, and it’s really interesting to see how Kotoko and Irie have grown. On the other hand, the dramatic climaxes need a lot of work. They’re way too cheesy for their own good and move way too fast, which leaves you with a feeling of “wait, that’s it?!” A real shame.
#23 (25) – Sekirei – (7,75/10) – Well, what do you know? The plot is actually getting interesting. Never saw that one coming. Seriously though, I like Sekirei a whole lot more than I thought I would. Having said that, the fanservice still is there and annoying, and some of the characters (especially that water-Sekirei and Kuu) are really annoying, and don’t seem to have any real purpose in this series other than fanservice. It doesn’t help that their attempts at being funny just aren’t.
#22 (21) – Soul Eater – (8/10) – Ah, finally Soul Eater gets a bit better now that that main storyline has popped up. This just isn’t a series for episodic stories, because the past few months have shown me that it just can’t seem to be able to come up with interesting stories that only fill one or two episodes. The continuous storylines do pose another problem, though: battles get dragged on for too long. Thankfully, Krona’s climax wasn’t hurt under this, and at least I loved episode 21.
#21 (new) – Detroit Metal City – (8/10) – This series has been really over the top, but it’s worked so far. Now let’s hope that it won’t lose inspiration as it goes on.
#20 (18) – Strike Witches – (8/10) – It disturbs me to think that each of these girls only has one single pair of panties…I knew the setting was weird, but not this weird. But the thing that’s even stranger is this: when you do manage to pull this series out of the gutter, and away from its beloved fanservice, it’s actually pretty good! It’s got a really charming cast of characters. At least, when they’re not comparing boob-sizes of course.
#19 (16) – Chi’s Sweet Home – (8,25/10) – I never thought that I’d call Chi’s Sweet Home the biggest source of laughs from the past spring-season, but here you have it. Some episodes are okay, but others are absolutely priceless.
#18 (14) – Wagaya no Oinarisama – (8,25/10) – Byakki’s arc turned out to be a really solid one for this series. This has been a clever and enjoyable anime so far, even though it may not look like it at first sight.
#17 (13) – Mission-E – (8,25/10) – Still straightforward fun and characters from Mission-E. Maori has proven to be a very interesting character, even though she lacks the development that the other characters did have in Code-E.
#16 (19) – Birdy the Mighty Decode – (8,5/10) – Talk about improvement! The first parts of Birdy the Mighty goofed off a bit too much, but the progressions in the past few episodes have been really impressive so far. Okay, so it’s still nowhere near the quality of Noein and Escaflowne, but it’s a pleasant surprise nonetheless.
#15 (9) – Macross Frontier – (8,5/10) – The second half of this series has proven to be very solid entertainment. It’s nowhere near the best of the season, but it’s very enjoyable nonetheless.
#14 (6) – Telepathy Shoujo Ran – (8,5/10) – In this month, Telepathy Shoujo Ran has been mostly light-hearted, which worked out pretty well, with as highlight the ever-hilarious banter between Ran and Midori.
#13 (23) – Zombie Loan – (8,5/10) – It’s a real shame that this series has to end here while Vampire Knight gets a continuation in October, even though Zombie Loan outclasses VK in just about every aspect and the DVD-specials left with an EVEN BIGGER cliff-hanger than the original season did. Still, the characters were better than ever: I laughed a lot during these two episodes, and the serious parts also really worked.
#12 (2) – RD Sennou Chousashitsu – (8,5/10) – I’m not sure why, but RD disappointed a bit this month. It’s an outstanding series when it’s just building-up and having its characters interact, but I’ve yet to see a good climax out of it. Who knows, perhaps the creators have been saving it for the series’ finale?
#11 (10) – Gintama – (8,5/10) – The fansubbers were on steam this month. I originally didn’t have much hope for the maid-head arc, but I have to say that its climax was really well written, and the definite highlight for the series this month. Other than that, Katsura’s attempts at getting a drivers’ license were also awesome and the eyebrow episode was also hilarious.

#10 (3) – Nijuu Mensou no Musume – (8,5/10)

The past arc wasn’t as memorable as the doll-arc, but there’s still hope for this series in its final four episodes. Let’s hope that the creators can bring this series to a worthwhile conclusion.

#9 (20) – Antique Bakery – (8,5/10)

Seriously, why am I enjoying this series so much? It’s indeed cheesy at times, but it’s like everything seems to be fitting, from the Norio Wakamoto-voiced businessman with a love for sweets to the fatherly guy with sunglasses; from the interesting style of shading to the habit of the voice-actor to not want to make every syllable sound perfectly in their microphone. Who cares if some of the characters in this series are gay?

#8 (11) – Blassreiter – (8,5/10)

Blassreiter… has become quite the interesting series, with probably the best animated action of the season, along with Macross Frontier. The CG really allows for some awesome camera-angles and movement. I’m also getting used to the extreme drama in this series, and I do have to say that it works pretty well with the overall overblown tone of this series.

#7 (12) – Ultraviolet: Code 044 – (8,5/10)

Ah, so what if this series is just simple and straightforward action. This series knows what it is, and it does this really well, resulting in a series with hardly any weaknesses. The highlight of this month was Zakusa’s passionate personality.

#6 (17) – Mahou Tsukai ni Taisetsu na Koto ~ Natsu no Sora – (8,5/10)

This has been a really calm series this month. It got rid of the crashing truck-like plot twists, and the result is a very down-to-earth series that prefers subtle drama over the overblown one, and I really like the results. The graphics still look as good as ever.

#5 (15) – Porfy no Nagai Tabi – (8,75/10)

I have no idea what happened to that 34th episode, but ignoring that little issue, then it’s been an excellent month for Porfy after the lacklustre Sicily-arc. Especially the things that happened in Rome reminded me of why I love this series.

#4 (8) – Bonen no Xamdou – (8,75/10)

Well, Bonen no Xamdou has already shown that it’s downright excellent at building up. Its characters continue to grow, and I really like the pacing of things so far. Now this series just needs to correctly use everything it’s been building up for.

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

My initial enthusiasm for this series is gone, but now that it’s nearly ending, I do have to say that even though it disappointed me a bit in the middle, this has been a very good and unpredictable series, and apart from Kaiba one of my top favourites, even though it was very unorthodox.

#2 (7) – Blade of the Immortal – (9/10)

Along with Natsume Yuujin-Chou, this is my favourite series of the summer-season, simply because it’s so much fun to watch the different action-scenes unfold (and yes, this is coming from Bee-Train). It’s just a shame that this only airs once every two weeks, but I’ve been craving for another great horror-show.

#1 (5) – Natsume Yuujin-Chou – (9/10)

Episode nine was simply amazing, and the rest of the episodes this month were also really heart-warming. Without a doubt one of the best series of the season to air this summer.

Posted on 30 August 2008 with categories: Telepathy Shoujo Ran



Short Synopsis: No supernatural case this time; instead it’s time for the local fireworks-festival.
Highlights: Telepathy Shoujo Ran + Slice of Life = a very enjoyable episode
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10
I’m interested in how long this string of anime-original episodes is going to continue. I originally thought that each arc was going to take up three episodes, but two episodes seem more likely. With six volumes left to animate, that means that there are still four of these anime-original episodes left to fill up. (Either they’re anime-original, or just the collected slice-of-life bits from the various novels that didn’t have to do anything with their stories).

I do wonder whether the creators will get the character-development right in the second half. It really looks like the creators of the anime have been picking their stories in random order (the ghost inn was from the seventh novel, it seems), so I wonder whether the cast will evolve properly. That the creators know how to flesh out their characters is yet again demonstrated by this episode, when Midori gets one of her nightmares of the past, in which she got abused by her parents.

Which makes me wonder: we’ve never seen Midori’s parents yet, have we? They sound like a bunch of workaholics who never have time for their daughter. Even Midori’s voice-mail was solely meant for Midori, and not her parents. Could it be that they’re currently living in two different houses? In any case, it does seem that they liked their daughter enough to put her on violin and piano-lessons.

Posted on with categories: Birdy the Mighty Decode



Short Synopsis: Just about every important character in this series gets attracted to what happened at the end of the previous episode
Highlights: Finally another great fight-scene!
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,5/10
Okay, so this series still needs miles to go before it can call itself equal to the likes of Noein or Escaflowne, but nevertheless, the past few episodes have really impressed me. The past three episodes have shown an incredible contrast to the first six episodes, which goofed off beyond belief. This episode also answers what the heck happened to the budget of this series: it’s clearly been saved for the major fight scenes like the one here.

Just about every side-character apart from Senkawa’s random classmates got fleshed out some more and gained some extra depth in this episode. Keisuke Muroto turns out to be quite a nice guy, despite his rather forcing ambitions. The guy reminds me of the male policeman from Noein. Natsumi is just as curious as Senkawa was, back in episode one.

Sayaka still doesn’t seem to know anything about her “other side”, and neither does it seem that Birdy and Senkawa recognize her from the last episode. But then again, you don’t easily suspect your classmate from being a psychotic killer. Syamalan turns out to be quite a famous person, with even larger ambitions. What exactly did he find so special in the wrecks that Sayaka left? He does seem to know about her, since he knows Capella. I couldn’t pick it up exactly, but at the end of the episode, did Capella promise him to hand over Nakasugi’s other self if he cooperated? This Ryunka they keep talking about, is that Sayaka’s other self?

In the meantime, the goth-girl turns out to be an android, and the guy with the moustache whose name I don’t know also finally does something.

The guys in moon-suits who wielded fire weapons also really worked. I originally thought that this series would keep Senkawa’s classmates apart from perhaps Sayaka away from the action, but as it turns out, it has other plans. Again, much like Noein, they all play their own part, aside from providing some obligatory classmates for the lead character.

Posted on 29 August 2008 with categories: Anime Reviews



Oh boy. I got impatient with the slow subs, so I decided to just check out the raws for this series, just to get things over with. Believe me; it really deserves to remain unsubbed. If you were already turned off by the first half, just be happy you didn’t get to see the second half…

In any case, for those of you who don’t know: Chocolate Underground is Production IG’s latest work, which tells in 13 five-minute episodes the story where an evil party has taken over the government and banned all sorts of chocolate. At first sight, it promised to be an interesting and short look at fascism and communism. Eventually, it turned into an abomination with the “we rock they suck”-mentality.

The first half at least knows how to build up, and it introduces the potentially interesting characters of Huntley and Smudger. It successfully portrayed how the people feel oppressed, and try to do something against the government by holding secret chocolate parties. It’s all fine when these events remain on a small scale, even though the evil chocolate-banning party is obviously a reference to China, and something tells me that it’s not just a coincidence that this series aired right before the Olympic Games in Beijing.

Unfortunately, as this series enters its second half, it becomes clear that the creators didn’t even know what they were building up for and the entire series gets resolved into one of the worst conclusions I’ve ever seen. In the end, a bunch of very blatant Deus ex Machina help the oppressed children overthrow the government in a boring cheese-fest that’s downright insulting to intelligence. The adults don’t even struggle back, they just magically “see the light” and give up their life ambitions like a bit of cheesecake.

Overall, this is the piece of junk you show children to make themselves feel special and more important than adults. I wasn’t expecting much, but the climax of this series was downright insulting. It’s not like short series with only 5-minute episodes are doomed to fail. Hanoka for example was a very cute series, despite its short length, but Chocolate Underground looks like it was directed by a bunch of 12-year olds, not the director of Wellber and Library Wars.

Storytelling: 2/10
Characters: 4/10
Production-Values: 7/10
Setting: 2/10
Posted on with categories: Macross Frontier



Short Synopsis: Most of the episode sees Ranka, as she tries to sort out her own feelings.
Highlights: Well, at least the love-triangle progressed a lot.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10
Well, this had to happen, I guess. Ranka’s still my least favourite character in this series, so an episode that focuses nearly entirely on her obviously isn’t as exciting as the past few episodes were. It’s really a calm-before-the-storm episode, where everything gets set up for the finale. It’s a bit of a bummer that the finale is going to be about a bunch of teenaged lovers who chase after each other, but there’s still enough potential left for some nice action-scenes. I just hope that now that Sheryl’s chances of getting it on with Alto are gone, she won’t turn into a useless side-character who can only watch.

In the meantime, it was an interesting plan of how Luka came up with the plan to get rid of the swarm of Vajra: get them all on one island, remove all people from that island and blow it up. I wonder where that swarm came from, by the way. I originally thought that it spawned from Ranka’s little friend, but in this episode it showed that it turned into something completely different, and different from most of the brainless Vajra-enemies we’ve seen thus far.

I’m also interested in what happened to Ozma and his lover. We never saw them getting caught, so they’re still on the run somewhere. I’m interested in what they can do for this series’ final four episodes. They’re along with Sheryl about the only ones who are on to Leon’s complot, so I wonder how they’re going to pull it off to kill the guy.

Posted on with categories: Detroit Metal City



Short Synopsis: Krauser II records his first music video.
Highlights: Again, first half is original content, the second half is the same as the introduction.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10
Okay, so I mistook the introduction and the first episode for the same, while in fact the introduction took parts of the first two episodes. If you haven’t seen the introduction yet, just skip it and go with episode 01 and 02, as every scene in it is included in either one of these episodes. This post is also more for completion’s sake.

In any case, the new part of this episode nicely added to Negishi’s bipolar and schizophrenic personality. This guy really has issues, but I guess that it’s also a strange form of social commentary, which takes the Japanese attitude of staying politically correct all the time to the extreme.

Posted on 28 August 2008 with categories: Detroit Metal City



Short Synopsis: “Krauser II” and his friends go on a date to make up for what went on in the music store.
Highlights: Half of it was already showed at the introduction.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7/10
Wait, am I missing something here? The first half of this episode was exactly the same as the first half of the introduction. Does that mean that the first episode contained the second half of the introduction, along with more original content? Talk about a confusing episode order.

In any case, the second half of this episode was less exciting than the introduction, with as highlight the sudden appearance of the band “Tetrapod Melon Tea”. The introduction got away with the huge stereotypes, but they’re already getting dull in this episode. Especially that drummer didn’t work too well. Although I do admit that it was interesting to see the split personalities of the DMC-members.

Posted on with categories: Anime Reviews



In the realm of strange series, Battle Programmer Shirase obviously can’t be missing. It’s a very short series with only fifteen episodes of ten minutes each, and it tells about the adventures of a legendary hacker. Those who are expecting a series that explores the ins and outs of the hacking-business can just shut down this window and look elsewhere, because at heart, BPS is just another romantic comedy.

The realism in this series is like some distant legend. We’re talking here about hackers who can crash satellites into earth’s atmosphere and little girls who can single-handedly take care of the security of the ministry for defence, and that’s just the tip of the ice berg. Everything computer-related is over the top on purpose, and that makes for a fun watch, especially if you’ve got something with computers (which I guess is the case with most of the people who visit this site). But oh boy, this series does have its issues.

Its biggest problem is that it doesn’t seem to really know what it wants. The result is comedy that feels like a shot of a shotgun shell: it shattered all over the place. There’s no real central theme or message that keeps the series together and each arc feels more ad hoc than that some real thoughts were put behind them. It makes you wonder why the creators went with such a bizarre series length of fifteen episodes to begin with, because the series also ends when the overall storyline is about to get started. Why couldn’t the creators just have gone with a regular airing of 13 or 26 episodes?

Then there’s the romance, with is just like the rest of this series: weird and hit or miss. We here have a couple that consists out of a ten year old girl and her twenty-five year old great uncle. Obviously, the fanservice jokes that result from that are rather predictable, but admittedly, their relationship, how weird it may be, does remain fresh through the series.

There’s also a lot of repetition in this series, even though it already was incredibly small. Each episode has at least a minute of recap about what happened in the previous episode, and there’s one particular minute-long sequence that gets repeated for FIVE TIMES through the series. What went on in the creators’ minds to approve of that, I don’t know…

Still, despite all this, the creators actually know that this series is rubbish, and just try to make the best of it. You can really see that the creators are critical of their own anime. This is one series that makes fun of itself, and actually succeeds, which I guess is where the short airtime comes in: it’s a short and fun series to watch if you’re stuck at home on a rainy day and need something light to watch. This is a series with style, no matter how strange it may be.

Storytelling: 8/10
Characters: 7/10
Production-Values: 7/10
Setting: 7/10
Posted on with categories: Bonen no Xamdou



Short Synopsis: Haru’s letters reach Akiyuki, and a possibility for the two of them to meet pops up.
Highlights: Another building-up episode, but this time the Xam’d and humanforms got some extra depth.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10
Another solid and enjoyable for Bonen no Xamdou. I think that this is the pattern we can expect for much of the rest of the first half of this series: mostly fleshing out the characters and building up the storyline, with your occasional action-sequence like the attack on Sentan-island and the Xam’d going berserk. The question is now whether the second half of this series can effectively make use of all the time that was spent on building up in the first half, but we still need to wait a couple of months before we get the answer to that. In any case, so far the first half has been wonderfully down to earth, and that’s why I like this series so far.

In the meantime, Haru’s still very worried about what happened to Akiyuki. As it turns out, the Xam’d was killed relatively easy, but the real purpose of it going berserk was to show that it wasn’t looking for trouble, it was just a pregnant woman who wanted to live, and at the same time show a strange pillar in the sky that only the Xam’d and Haru could see. The question is obviously: why could Haru see it and everybody else not? It’s probably got something to do with Akiyuki.

I also wonder what Haru’s going to do when she finally meets Akiyuki. Will she continue to stay with the military? Will she desert it and join the crew of the Zanbani (that would be rather lame, by the way)? Meanwhile, Akiyuki’s little adventure alone reminded me of the time when Renton went off on his own in Eureka7, although their reasons are totally different. There hasn’t been any real tension so far between Akiyuki and the crew, unlike with Eureka7, where the crew of the Gekko-go kept teasing Renton over and over again. Bonen no Xamdou is much more a coming of age story for Haru than that it is for Akiyuki.

This episode also again blurred the line between the Xam’d and the humanforms. It’s like humanforms are a lesser form of the Xam’d. The guy that Akiyuki meets in this episode: we’re still not sure whether he’s a humanform or a Xam’d, since his symptoms looked exactly like Akiyuki’s. But on the other hand, when even these common people are able to at least gain their senses back after having been Xam’d, then why is Sentan Island’s military having so much trouble to deal with just one of them?

Posted on 27 August 2008 with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~



Short Synopsis: A previously unmentioned Daiku-member is found dead.
Highlights: Finally the cast in this series feels complete!
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,5/10
Oh boy, they should have done this episode much sooner. It’s strange, but it finally feels that the cast has been introduced, and that with only three more episodes to go! With this episode, we learned a bit more about the final member who always remained in the shadows a bit (the red-haired woman whose name I forgot), and strangely enough, the cast also felt very complete with this episode. Screw the statement that this series isn’t good at characterizations. Sure, the characters don’t develop nearly as much as with other series, but at least with this episode, they’re fleshed out well.

I can’t believe that it took me this long to notice, but even though this is an incredibly inconsistent series, there have been two major themes throughout the episode: the first is the obvious Suzuki-storyline, and the second is a theme that you hardly get to see in anime in this form: the relationship with your wife that actually isn’t overblown. It’s one very realistic aspect in this series: each member of Daiku has his or her own love-life that doesn’t have anything to do with their job (apart from Aoki and Maki, perhaps. Ironically, still single).

But this episode did convince me: a second season for this series would rock, and the creators still have so much more to play with. Unfortunately, this is Madhouse we’re talking about. They nearly always go for new premises, instead of continuing old ones. And in a way, in the long run I like this approach better. Okay, it does leave a number of unfinished stories that way, but the other extreme is just as bad: just continue to make series of premises that already exist and which you know will rake in cash (like what Sunrise is doing right now, or even more blatantly, those recently introduced Haruhi spin-offs). The gaming-industry is currently showing what happens when such a mentality gets taken to the extreme: only sequels and hardly anything original. In the end, I do prefer the variety, so I can understand it if Madhouse would just end this series with a bang and then move on to other fresh premises.

CHANGE USERNAME
Anonymous1831032
Who cares dude. I liked the show. The term 'queer baiting' is fucking insulting.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - I agree with that, there is a lot of meandering in Hourou Musuko manga, it makes it feel more realistic and grounded. But there's a reason many storytellers don't tell the most boring aspects of real life, like constantly pondering about what the future may bring.
Vonter
Pokemon and Zelda let the community make the conjectures and the creators mostly shy away from explaining them, because they fear they'll write themselves into a corner.
Vonter
I mean, not all things should make statements. Ranma 1/2 is recognizable, despite being a comedy. Conan is iconic and its just contained mystery stories, despite the themes of Evangelion the creators have admitted the use of christian elements was because of aesthetics, moreso than delivering a statement.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Some felt that the manga for hourou musuko felt more low key in tone than the anime.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Travlos, I've noticed the site seems to be giving you trouble setting a username sometimes, best to just create an account instead.
AidanAK47
@Anon, that respect seems on different levels for people though. I mean I seen people championed Yuri on Ice as a major win for LGBT representation in anime while I myself just saw it as queer baiting seeing as the series itself couldn't admit it's characters were gay.
Anonymous1829806
Travlos here: I know many of the AoTitan fans hate the new direction of the manga, but I love it. Gimme more war!

While I love the ideas in Birdy the Mighty, the pace of the mangaka is maddening.
Anonymous1829447
Well, one last thing. I understand that anime like games or movies are a refuge for people who want to escape from politics for a second. But when mangakas bring those topics up themselves with stupid yaoi, gender bender, or yuri fan service, they're the ones politicizing anime and manga, not people like me. If they'd treat it with respect, then there would be no need for outcry.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Eh sorry about that, I almost launched into a rant about tumblr.
Lenlo
Yeah, id prefer not to get to political in this chat, but I agree with Aidan. Theres a limit, and I strike that limit at the + of LGBTQ+. There comes a point where your just making things up to be special
Kaiser-Eoghan
Looking back I probably read hourou musuko initially to get a better understanding of the topic it covered.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Not looking for cares/attention/fellating/self promoting, just felt a moment to pseudo-intellectualize because it was related to the identity topic.
Kaiser-Eoghan
From a psychological standpoint, apparently this is linked in with autism to some level.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The idea of cosplay as a thing is fascinating honestly as an escapist thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I imagine it would probably be easier to interact in a relationship as someone else, of course with them being aware of that.
Kaiser-Eoghan
More in a religious/spiritual sense however and having a greater sense of identity/feeling through temporarily taking on the role of someone else.
Kaiser-Eoghan
but the person themselves.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I did have ideas after hourou musuko and also finding out someone was trans that that might have applied to me and I still use female names in some sites but I really just came to realize it wasn't about trying the female clothes thing numerous times, wasn't trans(vestite or sexual), really pretty much found out I temporarily can take on roles of what/who I dress as, not due to gender
Kaiser-Eoghan
Oh, tumblr sjws are a parody of leftism /activism .
AidanAK47
People have the right to be whatever they want to be. That said there is a line when it comes to respecting peoples choices. For example, I don't think we need Tumblrs 40 different Genders.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: I haven't read the lesbian experience one.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Love my life was another good one, a serious shoujo-ai manga.
Anonymous1829213
That's unfortunate. TvT
Anonymous1829200
no thanks
Anonymous1829213
In the future though, I'd like to see something exploring sexuality as a whole even further. Even LGBT in and of itself implies a gender/sexuality binary. Let's get into the gender neutral/fluid, pansexuality, and so on as well. :.D
Anonymous1829200
and i like the
Anonymous1829200
i have one
Anonymous1829213
And I definitely agree - those manga exist and are excellent. ^_^
Anonymous1829213
*Shimanami
Anonymous1829213
And in regards to the celebrities themselves acting flamboyant or playing into stereotypes, why do you think those are the ones who are famous? They are allowed to be, because they paint a comical picture that is more easily accepted by the public. This is why Hourou Musuko and manga like Shiranami Tasogare/My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness are so amazing by painting people as actual humans
Kaiser-Eoghan
There ARE good shoujo-ai manga of course, girlfriends, aoi hana and yaoi like haru wo deiteita.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@CoolerAnon: I notice that bisexuality isn't much addressed in these things , the coming out thing doesn't often come into it.
Anonymous1829213
@Other Anon: You might add that a lot of those shows also perpetuate some pretty extreme stereotypes and male light of other of serious issues (i.e. the perception others have of LGBT people and that LGBT people have towards themselves, the experience of coming out, etc. etc.)
Kaiser-Eoghan
By lol coincidence he seems to have also voiced a pokemon character too.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*re-incarnation of, not evolved
Kaiser-Eoghan
Totally based, hilarious guy to, once claimed jokingly in an interview he was the evolved form of pikachu.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: There is a view of the transvestite as a "silly joke character" even in live action media there thats connected to homosexuallity but I'd say in most cases the person themselves is into it, Akihiro Miwa, famous Japanese gay actor played up that flamboyant drag act since the 60s.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: That is well known to me. Also its seen as anti-conform and I heard that the teachers don't know what to do when people are bullied over it, some of them think its down to mental illness.
Anonymous1829154
How japanese media portray lgbtq issues is a problem to this day. Sure shoujo, gender bender, and yaoi genres are mainstream, but at the end of the day people are expected to eventually "grow out of it" and find heterosexual partners in the end. Pretty patronizing
SuperMario
Oh shit, I didn't realize I put Wandering Children instead of Wandering Son in the title. Thanks for pointing that out Kaiser
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Shuu, mai precious lil' Babbu *hugs*
Kaiser-Eoghan
lol Okadas best anime work cause she didn't really write it lol
SuperMario
I will read on the manga to see how these kids growing up. Boy do i love this cast
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I suppose thats fair enough.
SuperMario
@Aidan: yeah, I know I stretched that image a bit but for some reasons I was goddamn hard to find an image for Wandering Son that I liked. Will make a slideshow later today to see if it looks better
SuperMario
@Kaiser: yeah I call them by their physical gender because at that stage, they haven't come out yet, right? If I remember correctly, Shuu still regards himself as "boku" rather than "watashi"
Kaiser-Eoghan
I guess this amuses me mostly because theres a jokey line later on in the manga where the girl with shu says "Ha, guess this makes me a lesbian"
Kaiser-Eoghan
There has been some theory/suggestion that Doi is attracted to shuu seeing shuu's femininty, seeing shuu as a woman .
Kaiser-Eoghan
Later in the manga Takatsuki stops having these feelings toward masculinity, which is addressing adolescent confusion.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Sorry about this really hope I don't come off as trying to start anything/an arguement/coming off as an asshole here.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Whats really interesting about hourou musuko is that in addition to Takako Shimura being a Lesbian , by choosing a mtf character as the protaganist and with shuu's relationship with a biological woman later in the manga, she is dealing with an even more interesting issue of whats called by Lesbians as Trans-lesbianism.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Transexual, mtf or ftm are probably the more accurate words to use as transgender also includes transvestite which is a different thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its a very good review though, you don't have to change anything I'm probably being overly anal about it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Was wandering Children chosen instead of wandering son to avoid suggesting pronouns in the title? But then the text of the review uses shuus physical rather than psychological gender. I'm not preaching or asking for changes or complaining, I just found this somewhat contradictory.
AidanAK47
Oh Tomogui Kyoushitsu? That is a weird death game manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*Checks manga cover* Goes in expecting bondage manga *its a cannibalism horror manga instead*
Kaiser-Eoghan
Probably just me, but I feel the top two pictures should have a gap between them.
AidanAK47
I would recommend replacing the top image of wandering son. Cause you killed the quality of it by stretching it. Never stretch an image.
Lenlo
Id recommend some kind of slideshow or something Mario. For me, its a big sudden blob of images. But thats just me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wouldn't deny a single criticism of the Junji Ito adaptation, and yet despite it all it works for me , I forgive it because the imagination goes such a long way with me, I don't even mind that some of them aren't fully developed either, don't need things to be too tidy or explain everything.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Eh, Maverick was a fairly rubbish, thrown in villain but I liked Lunatics backstory how it linked in with the twist his father was that big hero guy mentioned at the start who ended up becoming a washed up mess.
SuperMario
And I won't take "No, you don't need these pics at all" for an answer
SuperMario
Guys, should I put the 2 arts back-to-back at the begin of the post like this, or should I use slideshow?
Anonymous1828545
Travlos here: 91 Days was not too bad.
Anonymous1828545
Travlos here: Thanks for those two historical manga's head-up.
Anonymous1828434
Akumestu soo satisfying to read
Anonymous1828321
Thank you
Lenlo
A shame. Kokkoku had the first truly dull episode this week. Suppose one had to come eventually, but this one was mostly an info dump.
AidanAK47
Like lightning, I strike. Junji Ito is basically interesting ideas with deeply flawed execution. It's not scary, doesn't really capture Ito's style and the animation is bare bones. While the stories themselves can have there interesting points, they are often not fleshed out enough. Honestly I am getting rather bored with it.
Lenlo
Holy bejesus Aidan. Nice triple post. :P

So overall how is Junji Ito? From what ive read so far, it seems pretty hit or miss on the horror/gore front. Failing to live up to the manga. I havnt read it though, so im curious what ya think
AidanAK47
Akumetsu?
Anonymous1828142
Wearing a mask
Anonymous1828142
What was the name of the manga where the main character is some superhuman high school student who goes around fighting Japanese politicians
Lenlo
On a side note, I should really start Violet Evergarden at some point...
Lenlo
"Anime is dying" is just a meme that gets thrown around because of Miyazaki.
Lenlo
Maybe. I dont think average score per year is a good metric though, as the cash ins are increasing, but I doubt the passion projects are decreasing. For instance we had /alot/ of duds this year, but people only really remember/care about the good ones of which there was a fair number. It wasnt a bad year for decent/good anime.
AidanAK47
Well yeah, but they didn't have as many Animation studios back then as we do right now. So it's not so much that we lost artistic merit but rather the number of studios cashing in on popular trends for a quick buck have increased. Even then, I am willing to put money on there being just as much harem anime in yesteryear as we have cute girls shows in present.
Lenlo
Perhaps, but I would argue those were on smaller scales, and even then, thats not so different from Western animation or movies. Just look at Warner Bros and their DC push after the success of Marvel. Every industry has those who chase successful trends, yet they arnt failing
AidanAK47
@lenlo, the thing is though that before Moe crap there was eva copy crap and before eva copy crap you had space opera crap and before space opera crap you had hyperviolet OVA crap. The industry has always tried to cash in on a popular trend.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel people went apeshit over, say highschool of the dead because they never saw a bunch of old B/exploitation films, thus that show was never special to me and even failed at an imitation of such.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think people getting to excited for it being unique to a single medium or for, its setting themselve up for disappointment.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I just think its incredibly limited thinking to base it all on just ONE medium, you CAN hold up anime to film when anaylzing anime.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Why should 91 days get a free pass just because its an anime about gangsters? Go watch a film about it instead which theres probably many of, joker game fail you as the mature spy thriller it ended up not being, who cares, Tinker tailor soldier spy exists.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I dislike this "Its unique for an anime/manga to do this, so instantly lets latch on to it, despite fact that same something is already extremely prevalent in other mediums "
Kaiser-Eoghan
Case in point 91 days and Joker game "It has adults, lets pre-rejoice before the show even came out"
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel though because of the level of dissatisfaction with said moe shows that people are going to leap far too quickly on anything just slightly different, getting their hopes up too high and end up feeling let down.
Lenlo
That, or it all comes crashing down around our ears. With stuff like Houseki no Kuni and Made in Abyss from last year however, I think its going to be ok. We are just getting inundated with crap right now.
Lenlo
I do think that some of the artistic part of it has been lost, its gotten diluted in the never ending river of Moe crap. But that doesnt mean its gone. Just harder to find. Eventually all the random moe shows no one cares about will fail and stop getting made. But the anime audience will still be around, to enjoy the better stuff thats left.
Lenlo
Same thing happened in the mid/late 90's and early 00's to American cartoons.
Lenlo
Eh, I dont think anime is dying. Changing no doubt. Its going through a rough growth stage right now. It has a bigger audience than ever and people are trying to cash in on that with lots of shows that are basically the same
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Tank you and damn you for posting screencap of loli-tachibana, I now have cuteness overload a diabeetus =<
Kaiser-Eoghan
I realize thats a very minor detail to focus on though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Thats why I can really really get into a history manga if the art is top quality, the costume designs.
Kaiser-Eoghan
On the historical thing, I have a massive I repeat massive thing for full body medieval armoured characters hacking the shit into things or just the armour in general , especially templar armour designs. I also have an little obsession with male aristocratic army uniforms from the Prussian era and world war 2.
Kaiser-Eoghan
That recent Urasawa manga Travlos mentioned is ending also
@Mario: We might get a complete adaptation of after the rain, the manga is ending.
Kaiser-Eoghan
More historical manga I found, haven't read the second one however, I didn't hear those two mentioned on here either before.
Kaiser-Eoghan
[link src="http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Hawkwood
http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Ad-Astra-Scipio-to-Hannibal"]
AidanAK47
@Anon, yes clearly you know better than everyone else on the planet despite having no evidence whatsoever to back up you claims. Thank you nameless Stranger, we owe you a debt for telling us the same thing we hear every year. Let me congratulate you by kicking you out the door.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can generally come up with an opinion for what I follow/watch/read , but I don't really have one on kokkuu.
KTravlos
Well we watched the first episode of Kokkuku. Interesting. The ED theme is quite the fanservice.
SuperMario
@Ktravlos: If your like to check out some other shows this season then I'd definitely recommend After the Rain.
SuperMario
@KTravlos: at least Kino is thought-provoking. I can't say the same for Violet Evergarden. In fact I remain skeptical with VE
KTravlos
I am quite enjoying both Violet Evergarden and Mahoutsukai. Violet gives me similar vibes to the first Kio series, though obviously Kino was a better series.
SuperWooper
EPIC post, anon!
Anonymous1825128
Of course, as ardent fans of anime, the writers of this site would not deign to agree or even entertain the idea that their passion is no longer the same artisanal endeavor it once was.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Oh. Actually surprised I forgot about that. Yeah, when it comes to something being described as edgy I think Goblin Slayer fits that definition perfectly.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, You can still throw down your take if you want.
Anonymous1824209
AidanAK47 - Or the women shields.
Lenlo
You know, sometimes I dont regret forgetting about this chatbox. Missing the "anime is dying" conversation? One of those times
AidanAK47
Oh, Goblin Slayer is getting an anime adaption. I was rather lukewarm on it but I wonder how the anime is going to handle the rather unsavoury aspects. Like the rape. Lots and lots of rape.
AidanAK47
I remember the last guy said he would make a chart and I thought it was a brillent idea as at least something useful could come out of this old dead horse. Then his chart turned out to be a useless jpeg with series thrown to the left or right.
AidanAK47
It does stir up conversation but it's really just the same conversation repeated. I remember stating the exact same points Nayrael and Bokusen are saying around a year ago when this last came up.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Indeed Ratings are subjective but it would at least be a general mainstream consensus of the quality of anime over the years. Not final but at least it's better evidence than one persons general assumption. And other factors are impossible to quaitify.
Nayrael
A good parody of the "Anime back then and now - what happened? meme (if the links are not blocked here): https://i.imgur.com/JZqxz6f.jpg
Nayrael
Not to mention that back in the olden days you didn't see every Anime that aired. Official translators and fansubbers selected the best stuff, which resulted in you seeing the best shows and never even knowing about the shit-tier shows.
Bokusen
I think that people who say "anime is dying" are just getting too nostalgic. It's easy to remember the hit series from earlier seasons. It's less easy to remember all the forgettable generic series that you dropped after 1 episode, and so anime tends to "seem better" back then because of people's tendency towards selective memory.
Anonymous1820731
Why are there more bad anime? Because there are more anime being made. That means the good ones are buried under the lots of bad ones. But saying "anime is dying" from that is like saying "music is dead because I don't like Britney Spears." Why does this conversation always come up, its obvious conversation bait.
Anonymous1820589
@Aidan: You are the first to obsess over the fact that reviews are subjective. And since they're subjective, looking at anime 'ratings' over time does nothing to gauge the measure of effort and artistic talent that goes into making anime.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Which I got my answer by the way.
SuperWooper
>average review scores
What do those have to do with whether anime is "dying" or not? You'd need to look at the money.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Want to add that I agree with both you and Aidan, only brought up those two topics back there because I wanted to know what shows now will be popular in the future.
SuperMario
I'm on the side of Aidan regarding to this. For me it's not neccessary means the anime industry has become "better" or "worse", it's just that it takes new shape and trends and based on the number of anime produced, the industry isn't going down soon
AidanAK47
Am I really going to draft up a chart gathering average review scores of the past 25 years just t shut up this talk of anime dying?
But even if I did that won't toss aside this nonsense.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I know this is complete guesswork.
AidanAK47
Plus the industry is dying? Bloody hell, we got major companies FUNDING anime. Streaming services and more anime coming out that ever before. You can argue that this new anime is weaker but honestly it's just misguided. It takes time but great shows are still coming out. Just like back then.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Well thats kind of what I meant, what, when passage of time comes into it are going to end up being classic based on that, speculatively speaking.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Thats probably a much better way of phrasing it, inheriting mantles. I'm going to say that promised neverland is presently along with Titan a BIG modern shounen.
AidanAK47
Anyway my point is that the shows of the past, the so called classics, are just as flawed as the shows of today. It is only through the passage of time that they become classics. When Stein;Gate finished airing, I seen no one call it a classic. Same goes for Madoka and Fate/Zero. Now, you have people putting up the pedestals.
AidanAK47
Though if anything has inherited the Shounen mantle, it's likely Boku no hero.
AidanAK47
There is no big three Shounen and that's honestly for the best. Because in generally the declining aspect of Naruto and Bleach was mainly due to the pressure on the mangaka to put out chapters on a weekly basis. In fact it's pretty much the primary factor in Bleachs decline.
AidanAK47
Bebop is great but even it is hit and miss by nature. Doubt many remember much about the casino episode and the Alien spoof episode is likely not anyone's favorite. Eva is massively flawed but no one wants to admit it due to the massive amount of praise it receives and influence it has on the industry.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But what is the new big three shounen?
AidanAK47
If we go further back to DBZ, that has tons of issues with filler, dragging out episodes, animation shortcuts, and even complaints of it doing the same thing over and over again with it's story. No to mention the underutilised cast and the everlasting act up putting Goku on a greater pedestal.
AidanAK47
But let us dissect this viewpoint of yours. You claim the Shouen-jump canon as a great, guessing that refers to the shounen big three. But aside from One piece, the other two are emmensily flawed. Naruto is 50% filler and Bleach drops seriously in quality after soul society.
AidanAK47
Also Fate series is trash? That definitely seems aimed at me. What first series are you referring to? Fate/Zero, Fate/Stay Night 2006? Fate/UTW? The same thing over and over again? Sure each series has a holy grail war, but none of them every turned out the same. I am more than willing to admit that the spinoff series outside of the main canon are lesser. Calling them trash however is hyperbole.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Not this crap again. The old "Anime isn't as good as it used to be", how many times have I heard that over the years, and each and every time it proves more untrue.
Kaiser-Eoghan
One point I'm trying to get at is, I don't get throwing the word bad taste around when I know I was probably in the same position as that other fan years ago.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Another thing, for shows we talk up and obviously I've been just as guilty of this, how many of these am I going to be able to recite off by heart years down the line?
Kaiser-Eoghan
I don't like Madoka but thats a good example of a modern classic that'll keep in peoples minds, people still care.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*its a
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: The reason I want to see a new show become a modern classic is because I'm tired of this "fleeting masterpiece" way of thinking, where I a show is super popular during the season and gets talked up as if it'll stick in the mind years on, then weeks later it disappears from memory.
Anonymous1819907
And anime watchers tend to be attracted to series that are just plain boring. The Fate franchise is case and point. The same thing over and over again. It really is a disgrace, to be honest--in my opinion. The first series was great, and I look forward to the movie. But everything in between is trash. But they still get the views, since people are sheep.
Anonymous1819907
The shonen-jump canon, shows like bebop and eva were huge in their time. The industry is just not the same--it's really dying. There isn't the same desire to blow shows up like there used to be. Shonen jump is still at it, but those shows are rarely worth watching, even if they're popular
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