Posted on 31 March 2009 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

La Corda d’Oro ~Secondo Passo~

Short Synopsis: Our lead character seems to have abandoned her magical violin.
Chance of me Blogging: 0% (It just feels too much like an inferior shoujo Nodame Cantabile)
I remember how the first season was pretty much an insult to classical music, in which a ditz without any musical background acquires a magical violin and cheats herself into a competition among the top students of the school she’s in. Thankfully, the second season seems to have improved a lot on it, and the lead characters seems to have realized that it’s much more fun to be playing by herself. There’s quite a bit of potential in her growth. She now seems to be incredibly talented because she can play with lots of emotions in her violin, but I guess that that’s much better than the magical violin. I’m still not sold on the ridiculously looking bishies, though. Especially that blonde guy was horrible. He reminds me of Fuwa Shou from Skip Beat! In fact, I could swear that the two of them share the same voice actor, and I can’t believe that he’s being forced to play his character straight this time. Talk about overacting here…

Chi’s New Address

Short Synopsis: Our lead character wants to go outside.
Chance of me Blogging: 0% (It’s a fun show and all, but I’d go crazy trying to blog it)
Awesome to see this series back. Chi is just as fun to watch as ever, and I’m surprised that the creators are actually continuing with the whole plotline of trying to find a new home for Chi. This is going to mean that dad, mom and Youhei are going to make way for a new family, and I wonder whether this new family has the charms of the original. Ah well, at least Chi will be the same. ^^;

Marie & Gali

Short Synopsis: Our lead character finds herself into some weird Italian-ish island.
Chance of me Blogging: 10% (Italy suddenly became a popular country to make fun of, hasn’t it?)
So… yeah. If you’re wondering what the “Gali”-part of the title means: it’s short for Galileo Galilei. What we have here is a bizarre fantasy setting in which a teenaged girl meets a very weird version of Galileo inside the tower of Pisa. I’m really not sure who thought of it, but for some reason it was kind of charming. It makes excellent use of its time of only 5 minutes to be either slapstick, make random historical references and be cute, and the combination works surprisingly well. It’s obviously never going to be amazing, but I have to admit that it was pretty amusing. Not to mention that Marie’s character-designs look very stylish.

Posted on with categories: Monthly Summaries

An interesting month this time. It featured a lot of very awesome finales, but also quite a few disappointing or lacking endings, unfortunately. What surprised me is that most of the shows whose endings went right are the ones who still have some sort of second season or OVA waiting, or at least whose storylines aren’t finished yet. In any case, though, the past half year has been a very strong half year for anime, which aired quite a few classics and great shows. I have no idea what the spring-season looks like, since I again tried to avoid all previews about it, but the standard it has to live up to has been set really high with the past Winter-season.

#24 (12) – Sora wo Miageru Shoujo no Hitomi ni Utsuru Sekai – (7,25/10) – The ending was disappointing, to say the least. If only the creators went with a solid ending, I would have been at least content, but for some strange reason Yumemi and Munto started acting completely out of character in that final episode. What happened there?
#23 (20) – Gintama – (7,25/10) – I really wish I can just label episode 106 as a lesser episode in which the creators had a bad day or something, but the timing is just too coincidental with the arrival of the new director: characters suddenly act out of character, the jokes feel flat, the amount of penis-jokes increased fivefold and most importantly: the dialogue suddenly feels nowhere as creative as it once did in the first 100 episodes. Perhaps the new director needed some time to get used to this series, but please let him get in his element soon!
#22 (9) – White Album – (7,5/10) – The ending didn’t resolve anything at all, unfortunately. And yeah, I know that a second season is coming, but the creators should have at least brought in some kind of closure. This month of White Album was decent, I guess, but it’s just a shame that I completely lost my suspense of disbelief for this show.
#21 (21) – Mobile Suit Gundam 00 – (7,75/10) – The ending was too idealistic: bad guy dies and everyone is suddenly happy. Still, it sufficed in the action-department.Gundam 00 has been formulaic to say the least, but at least the action was solid.
#20 (11) – Druaga no Tou – (7,75/10) – The ending was cheesy and formulaic. It’s a shame, since the ending of the first season was so fresh and original, but this time… I think we could see what would happen from miles away.
#19 (23) – Kurokami the Animation – (7,75/10) – The show still is nothing special, but interestingly enough there is still potential for its second half, so I’m going to stick with this show for a little while longer. However, I really hope that the combat system stops being so arbitrary in this show’s second half.
#18 (new) – Chi’s New Address – (7,75/10) – Fun, fun, fun. There have only been two episodes released so far, so there’s not much that this series could have shown yet, but it’s nevertheless going to be interesting to see what a completely different setting can do for this series.
#17 (18) – Koukaku no Regios – (8/10) – With the first half over by now, the show’s really going to have to deliver at this point. While solid and decent, nothing has stood out yet, and I hope that I was right in sticking with this series.
#16 (15) – Tales of the Abyss – (8/10) – The ending was a bit underwhelming, especially with Luke rising from the dead again in the last minute (but hey, this is Sunrise after all), and the finale of this show felt a bit rushed. It would have benefited from one or two more episodes.
#15 (19) – Minami-Ke – (8/10) – The ending was perhaps a bit cheesy with the drama and all, but it was fun to watch just like the rest of this series. March again was a nice month for Minami-Ke to just sit back and watch, and that’s what the show has become good at.
#14 (22) – Hetalia: Axis Powers – (8,25/10) – The thing that stood out most this month was that very strange F-box. It’s so hilarious that nobody seemed to find it strange that it was there. Overall it’s still been an enjoyable little series and interestingly: it seems to be getting better.
#13 (16) – One outs – (8,25/10) – And this month was much of the same again, which is a good thing for this series. One Outs isn’t exactly going to become something memorable, but it’s definitely enjoyable.
#12 (13) – Natsume Yuujin-Chou – (8,25/10) – The ending was pretty good; it really brought together everything that the second season had been building up for, but it’s going to be a waste if there isn’t going to be some sort of third season in a few years.
#11 (10) – Tytania – (8,25/10) – The ending was surprisingly good, fun and solid, even though it only remains a question whether we’re going to get that second season. The finale took a looooong time to build up, but the end result was definitely rewarding.
#10 (2) – Clannad – (8,5/10)

The ending was a deus ex machina. While it makes sense when put in context with the game, it was badly introduced and came from nowhere. Apart from that, this month has been solid, though last month was much, much better.

#9 (14) – Skip Beat – (8,5/10)

The ending was really solid, but left the series with a HUGE cliff-hanger. It’s been a very fun month for Skip Beat, and the past few episodes really convinced me that this is an awesome series, rather than yet another average shoujo as Itazura na Kiss or Ouran High School Host Club.

#8 (8) – Genji Monogatari Sennenki – (8,5/10)

The ending was solid and one of the better ones I’ve seen this season. Again, Genji Monogatari has been a very consistent emotional journey, and I’m looking forward to whatever series Noitamina has to offer next.

#7 (6) – Hajime no Ippo – (8,75/10)

Hammer’s arc was yet again incredibly addictive. While not as good as the previous one, it still is an amazing series.

#6 (3) – Casshern Sins – (8,75/10)

The ending was rushed. It’s a shame that the creators couldn’t get themselves two or three more episodes, because if they did the ending would have absolutely rocked.

#5 (17) – Ride Back – (8,75/10)

The ending was very solid. The past month was definitely the best month of Ride Back for me, and it was awesome to see that everything did come together in the end.

#4 (5) – Shikabane Hime – (8,75/10)

The ending was a bit of a disappointment, considering the action-packed climax you’d be expecting. Nevertheless, apart from that it was a very exciting finale, and the height of the second season.

#3 (4) – Michiko e Hatchin – (9,25/10)

The ending was very realistic and I liked it, though it could have been better. The rest of the finale of this series, however, was an awesome one. Hatchin vs Satoshi rocked.

#2 (7) – Jigoku Shoujo – (9,25/10)

Seriously, what a fantastic month for Jigoku Shoujo! The finales of the different seasons always manage to push the series to new heights and the third season is no exception. The show might have had its issues in the beginning, but the finale really makes up for it!

#1 (1) – Birdy the Mighty Decode – (9,5/10)

The ending was without a doubt the best ending of the season. Birdy the Mighty has been really dominating the past Winter Season, and this month was no different. An utterly incredible finale that still manages to pay attention to those small details as the world that the characters live in, and the animation during the big action-scenes was simply fantastic.

Posted on with categories: Anime Reviews, Natsume Yuujin-Chou



The first season of Natsume Yuujin-chou was basically a string of random stories about the lead character, Natsume, meeting a bunch of Youkai. The second season forms much more of a unity as Natsume’s development starts kicking in. The random stories are more connected to each other, and instead of an episodic series, we’re suddenly treated to a character-study of a boy who grew up with being able to see youkai.

The production-values are as solid as ever: backgrounds are rich and detailed, the animation is crisp and the different designs for the youkai are very solid. The music is also very enjoyable again, with especially the ending theme standing out as a great song.

Unfortunately, despite this it did lose some of the charms of the first season this way. For me, the show has lost its novelty by now, and I don’t think that it’s really succeeded in making up for it, even though many people seem to disagree with this. For me, the height of Natsume Yuujin-chou still is the Hotaru-episode, and the second season did nothing to change that.

I think that one of the reasons for why the second season has made less impact is that it ends at a point where it’s simply still building up. There’s a huge part of the manga left to be animated, and the second season was mostly just setting the pieces correctly for those arcs. I that way, it served its purpose very well if there’s going to be a third season, but it doesn’t suffice as a finale here.

And don’t get me wrong here: Zoku Natsume Yuujin-chou is still a very enjoyable and relaxing slice of life series without any major flaws, but it just lacks the impact that the first season had, but there is still enough worth watching if you were also charmed by the first number of episodes like I was. Especially don’t miss the Tama-chapter.

Storytelling: 8/10
Characters: 8/10
Production-Values: 9/10
Setting: 8/10
Posted on with categories: Natsume Yuujin-Chou



Short Synopsis: Natsume finds himself having to choose between Kai and Natori.
Episode Rating: 7,5/10 (Good)
Well, the creators did it, even though they had to stuff two chapters into only one episode. It makes a lot of sense to save this story for last, because it really forms a conclusion to the development of Natsume throughout the second season: for once, he’s being forced to choose between humans and youkai.

I also liked that little scene at the end, which symbolizes how much closer Natsume has gotten to his classmates now. It’s time for the guy to grow up and stop only interacting with youkai. It was a very nice idea for an ending, and while not the best ending I’ve seen this season, it was definitely a good one; something that most other shows this season can’t boast.

Overall, the second season wasn’t exactly among my favourites, but it was nevertheless enjoyable to watch and the character-development on Natsume was very nicely done. Let’s hope that there’s going to be a third season some day.

Posted on 30 March 2009 with categories: Anime Reviews



Skip Beat has been an incredibly frustrating series for me; and not because it was incredibly bad: instead it’s been incredibly good. It’s a true breath of fresh air in the Shoujo genre, I became a fan of it instantly… and yet every single tiny flaw tends to stick out like a needle here. Ack.

While from the outside this series doesn’t look anything special: shoujo series about a girl who enters the idol business have been done before, but never in the way that this series has done. By a lack of a better description: this show has BALLS. The amount of guts it has continues to surprise, and to be honest, I can’t think of any other shoujo series that has a better sense of comedic timing than this series has. It’s amazing how careful and yet how witty this show is when delivering the jokes. It knows exactly how to deliver its jokes. The show is definitely on its best when two people with incredibly clashing personality are in bitch-fights against each other. It’s guaranteed hilarity!

And that’s the thing: if there’s any series that deserves to progress flawlessly, then it’s this one, but it’s such a bloody shame that the drama-bit of this series is shaky. While better than your average romantic comedy, the drama especially in the middle suffers from being WAY TOO RIDICULOUSLY CHEESY for its own good. The incredibly soppy drama unfortunately takes itself seriously, and doesn’t seem to realize that it’s incredibly formulaic.

The problem with this series is its trademark bitch-fights: while hilarious to watch, it becomes horribly dull when characters aren’t either trying to scratch each other’s eyes out or teasing the hell out of each other. The biggest offenders are the two middle arcs, about the chief’s daughter and the commercial filming. In such a hilarious series, these arcs break the flow terribly and are a pain to get through.

The romance also starts out incredibly shaky. Kyoko, the female lead, doesn’t just happen to run into one of the most respected actors in the business, she also grew up with the friggin guy when she was just a child. Especially the latter is jarring, since it wasn’t needed (or used, for that matter) at all in order to spark up the romance between him and the lead female.

THANKFULLY, though, this series does pick itself up as it goes along, resulting into a bunch of episodes of awesomeness in the final third, and it closes off with a strong arc. Unfortunately, it then proceeds to end the series with one helluva cliff-hanger. Kyoko herself is a really diverse character that has a huge amount of different sides to her character. Unfortunately, some of these sides feel forced. And that’s the bloody thing with this show: for every great point it seems to have one flaw or so to bring it down.

Nevertheless, I recommend this show for those looking for a great shoujo-series. Great shoujo-series like this one are very rare, especially since most shows of the genre feel like a simple rehash of an existing formula without much of an own identity. Skip Beat, while too soppy for its own good at time is a genuinely funny series, and we can only hope that a second season will be made some day.

Storytelling: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 8/10
Posted on with categories: Anime Reviews



The reason why there aren’t many reviews of pure slice-of-life series on this site isn’t because I dislike the genre, or anything. Instead, when I need to drop series to prevent myself from watching too much at once, these shows also seem to be the ones to go down first. This season I felt in a bit of an experimental mood, though, and I decided to stick with the third season of Minami-Ke, even though I never watched more than one or two episodes from the first two seasons. What I got was a pretty enjoyable series about the lives of a bunch of sisters, living together and their classmates.

While I could go all anal and be like “zomg, it’s nothing but fillers so it sux0rz”, but even though there’s hardly any continuity, and all of the different stories are just random strings of five minutes packed together, it’s in this case perfectly enjoyable to watch the antics of all of the different characters in this series. While it’s not as gut-achingly funny as other comedies, I found that Minami-Ke Okaeri was often able to put a smile on my face.

This is a typical show that never really hits any highs or lows, and instead is just enjoyable to watch and perfect if you’re feeling lazy and have half an hours or so to burn. The Minami-sisters are quite likable, and they’re funny while not trying to be. This review is short because there’s not much else to say about it, but I’m definitely going to check out the first season, which is rumoured to be even better.

Storytelling: 8/10
Characters: 8/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 8/10
Posted on with categories: Anime Reviews



When it started, Ride Back was a strange beast. With its concept of uniting strange motorbikes with arms with military totalitarianism, I was on one hand charmed by the characters, on the other hand it just kept testing my suspense of disbelief with overly coincidental plot twists that were only introduced for the sake of the story. Nevertheless, now that I’ve finished this series, I don’t feel like whining anymore. Ride Back rocks, despite some of the sacrifices it had to make.

In the end, Ride Back is a character-study of the female lead: Rin Ogata. It’s about many small things: criticism against military entering politics, simple motorbike racing, and terrorism; it’s about how a seemingly innocent action can have disastrous consequences and trying to find one’s true potential. and the beauty of Ride Back is that somehow, it all makes these widely diverse themes into a whole in only 12 episodes. The show very subtly evolves from light college adventures to a dark story about terrorism, but the whole thread of Rin’s development keeps it on one track and it prevents the series from dragging on, and while it may seem like a bit questionable as it goes on, the series comes together wonderfully in the end.

I also really must praise Madhouse’s visuals yet again. They went with another different art style this time, and especially the character-designs look really good and down to earth. There’s a slight issue that the CG doesn’t mesh in with the rest of the visuals, but even that could have been done much, much worse. And the series’ soundtrack also is a very powerful one.

So overall, I ended up liking this series much more than I thought. It’s got a questionable start, and does tend to pull some random coincidences simply for the sake of its story, but Rin’s development is rock-solid, which is especially rare for such a small 12-episode series. It’s no instant classic, but it’s yet again a worthy addition to Madhouse’s excellent repertoire.

Storytelling: 8/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 9/10
Setting: 8/10
Posted on with categories: Anime Reviews, Mobile Suit Gundam 00



Gundam 00 was the first long Gundam series that was split into two halves of about 25 episodes, rather than continuing for a full run of 50. In te end, it turned out into a decent series: it does the job it’s supposed to do, but it wasn’t anything really outstanding. The second season unfortunately was a bit weaker than the first.

While the first series had some interesting politics in the beginning, the second season drops the politics aspect completely and instead focuses much more on delivering solid action and the story becomes much more character-focused. Central to the story are various different conflicts between opposing sides, and these really range from utterly abysmal (Saji and Louise whine way too much throughout the series) to engaging and pretty good (Allelujahh and Marie). Especially Setsuna deserves credit, as he grows into a solid and capable male lead.

This approach has its good and bad sides. As I said: whenever the good characters take up the spotlight, the series becomes pretty enjoyable, but in the end the second season is just too formulaic. There are too many random battles that don’t stand apart from each other; they hardly ever resolve something and usually end up with both parties simply retreating. Most of the major villains lack development (especially the innovators, who apart from Regetta have as much personality as a paper bag), and all in all, this second season could have also been done in 13 episodes without losing much of the content or impact.

So in the end, this really is a series for those who want lots of solid action. If you’re not into that, then there really isn’t a lot left to watch in this series. The animation pretty good overall, but for me it was hardly ever really aestetically pleasing; the soundtrack is excellent, though. It’s not a bad series by far, and it has some pretty enjoyable parts (my personal favourite being the fall of the elevator), but there are lots of better mecha-series out there.

Storytelling: 8/10
Characters: 8/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 7/10
Posted on with categories: Mobile Suit Gundam 00



Short Synopsis: Ribbons and Setsuna finally face off against each other.
Episode Rating: 7/10 (Enjoyable)
Not the most impressive finale, but I’ve seen a lot worse endings this season. Obviously it was going to be overly cheesy, Setsuna and Ribbons were bound to fight to the death, and in the end Ribbons predictably dies and Setsuna somehow survives in true Disney fashion. Everyone lives happily ever after, blah blah blah, but there were some nice touches in this episode, like how the creators really wanted the show to end in a fight with Exia, rather than 00-Raiser.

I wasn’t too happy with how easily all of the conflicts in the middle east were solved. I mean, it’s not like Ribbons caused those, and the whole reunion of the middle east came really from nowhere. Also, what was that clone doing among the Azadistans? Also, what the heck was the purpose of Mister Bushido in this series? He was pretty much useless for the largest part of he series. One thing that I did like was Patrick’s wedding. That was sort-of cute.

Overall, I can’t really say that I’ve become a Gumdan-fan over the past year and a half, even though I tried. The original Mobile Suit Gundam was Excellent, but the others I’ve seen (Zeta, Wing and 00) all left things to be desired and were just too formulaic. It’s a shame, because all started out in their own way, and had an excellent and promising first half, but in their second halves they just all degrade into a string of random fights that aren’t really that much different from each other. I originally planned to patiently watch all of the gundam series out there, but in the end I’m only going to check out the rumoured really good ones: War in the Pocket, 08th MS Team and Turn A Gundam.

Posted on 29 March 2009 with categories: Anime Reviews, White Album



I really wanted to like White Album. It had so many good ideas and concepts for a romance show. It had such a wonderful style and execution, it had the potential to be an incredible series. And yet… I just can’t. Beware: this series is very, very easy to dislike.

White Album is a harem series, but it immediately sets itself apart from the rest of its genre by its execution. The pacing is slow, and instead of focusing on silly comedy, this show is driven by the characters’ emotions, portrayed with a wonderful sense of subtlety. Often, we get small glimpses of what characters are thinking, either through short flashbacks, or their thoughts written on the screen. For a fan of subtlety as myself, this series really started out incredibly promising.

The cast of the series is very daring: Touya himself is far away from your typical paper-bag male lead, and instead he is an incredibly flawed character. Throughout the entire series, you’ll be screaming at him for the things he does. In fact, the rest of the cast is also pretty flawed, and it’s one of the driving forces of the series. Kabitzin wrote an excellent article on that matter, and even though it caused many people to hate this series, I consider it at one of the show’s strengths.

But in the end I just can’t recommend this show. I hate to say it, but it’s just too ambitious for its own good. It wants to do too many things and sacrifices the time it needs to build these up. Characters start crying and weeping way too easily in this show, and in most of the times it just feels too forced and directed. The show also has its share of plotholes here and there that only serve to increase the huge drama, but it never really seems to take control of where the drama goes to.

So in the end, the best parts of the show are the quiet bits, in which the drama subtly unfold without any forced crying or yelling. It’s a bloody shame; this show could have been amazing, but in the end it failed to live up to the expectations. I really appreciate the effort, but not every experiment goes exactly according to plans. I’d love to see a series that takes this series’ formula and does pace it properly, though.

Storytelling: 9/10
Characters: 7/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 6/10
CHANGE USERNAME
Vonter
I watched some episodes of KonoSuba yesterday, reminds me of Those Who Hunt Elves. And I suppose it might be an easy recommendation because it mainly comes down to; do you find it funny? or fun? If not, skip.
Kaiser-Eoghan
While yes its true of watching those slice of life shows week by week is better, I felt that when reading the manga for Aria it was easier to marathon by reading it rather than watching.
SuperMario
Flying witch have the same atmosphere, but it's a purely slice of life anime. I love Aria too and I agree that watching it 1 episode a time is the best way to enjoy it. Can't think of other serious anime that have those calming elements for now
Anonymous1042537
Yeah, I noticed they all have pretty different structures from one another (ACCA's political, Mushishi's naturalistic, Monster is a thriller, Rakugo's about a specific art form, 3-gatsu is ostensibly about Shogi, etc.) but I found that I found some similar calming elements in them (to different degrees of course).
Anonymous1042537
Thanks, I'll definitely check Aria out!
AidanAK47
One of the hardest shows to marathon besides Bakemonogatari. Though Bakomono gave me a headache after a few episodes whereas Aria just had me so mellow that I could drift into sleep at any second.
AidanAK47
Don't know if you could call it a sub genre as the examples you listed are all really different from each other.
Though in the vein of calming shows I think you can add the Aria series to the list. That show is so relaxing that you find yourself nodding off to it. Not out of boredom but it just has that effect on you.
Anonymous1042537
Do you guys know if there's a specific subgenre like this, or am I making it up? And are there other anime with that kind of feel. Not exactly slice of life, but in the general vicinity of it.
Anonymous1042537
The Great Passage was another great example. It delved into the seemingly boring subject matter of dictionary-making, but it was a surprisingly charming show. 3-Gatsu no Lion also looks promising, I enjoyed a lot of the first season (but wasn't a fan of the forced comedy sometimes).
Anonymous1042537
Like the episode where Tenma first meets Grimmer on the train to Prague and they have a picnic on the mountain was so dang good. I really need to rewatch that.
Anonymous1042537
There are some elements of that style in other shows too, but to a lesser extent. Like some parts of Rakguo (mainly season 1) was very soothing. Naoki Urasawa's Monster had some fantastic, almost melancholic episodes like this.
Anonymous1042537
It seems that most anime w/ that kind of style usually also have another genre mixed in. Mushishi was also very naturalistic, ACCA had a political underpinning.
Anonymous1042537
It's sort of in the vein of a "Mushishi" style show. I suspect it's an emerging subgenre of slice of life that's meant to be very calming, relaxing, atmospheric which I really am digging.
Anonymous1042537
I really hope there are more shows like it; not that it was perfect, but it was certainly unique and hit a lot more than it missed. I really like those cool, quiet shows you can enjoy with a nice cup of tea before you go to sleep.
Anonymous1042537
Ironically though, I would say that the first half of ACCA (up until the big flashback) is better enjoyed week by week, or at least that's what I found.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: It felt good marathoning a show again rather than waiting week by week and next weekend I'll probably marathon house of five leaves.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Forgot to mention...there were certainly a share of moments in Acca that feel fanservish to the female audience =P
SuperMario
@Aidan: haven't noticed that. Will fix it soon.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Only problem I can see is that the posts have no spaces in between paragraphs.
SuperMario
... to be near my laptop for an entire week. First time that I had to blog entirely through my phone. Seemed to work out fine but I had to borrow screenshots from other source (I thank you that other source) ^^
SuperMario
*unless* rather than *as long as*. This has been a crazy week for me as I didn't have a chance
SuperMario
@anon1039488: I find the idea of limiting excess to exclusively stream an aime is a dumb idea; because as long as people have a chance to expose to the anime they won't really care to check it out. So I detest owning the legal streaming account, but I always pay back by buying DVDs/Blurays that I liked
SuperMario
I watched House of Five Leaves by the same mangaka and I really enjoyed it. Nataume Ono is a pretty excelent storyteller (a bit mixed on her art-style thou)
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I agree that the first dew episodes of ACCA were not that engaging but the endingg neatly tied up all loose ends. I still feel Grossular's act is kind of messy (why was he under such control from Lilium? He's not that kind to be in such passive role to be honest) but other than those I don't have any real complaints.
Anonymous1039488
Competition is good, but it makes it cost so much to legally watch everything. That's why a lot of people pirate I feel.
Anonymous1039488
You have Crunchryoll and Funi, fine. Then there's Daisuki which is kinda random. Then Amazon, Netflix, and Hulu all have some random anime, though it seems that mainly Amazon has current series
Anonymous1039488
I don't have Amazon Strike, which is like their new venture into anime I guess. There's too many streaming services to keep up with tbh
Kaiser-Eoghan
To be honest I'm pretty crap when it comes to supporting things, I don't pay for almost all the things I watch/read/play, I don't have a crunchy or amazon account, I still pirate legal streams.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: Is it a case that your country is blocked? Maybe go for a vpn? If you absolutely have to you could pirate the show...
Anonymous1039488
I wanna watch Re:Creators but don't have Amazon... :( alas
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel like I need to wait and see approach with sekaisuru Kado...this prologue phase is...long...
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wish it had been 24 episodes long though to better organize itself.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Favourite characters were Jean, Groslur and Nino.
Can’t say I cared for the goofy interactions between Jean’s workfriends though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Yet for whatever I could say about the pacing, when the twists happen they creep up on you and the show mostly lands every one of them, even if I’m not exactly pleased that sometimes the series does the “I pulled it out of the hat/ass” approach.
I’m relatively indifferent on the art/animation.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I did feel it picks up, improves by the mid-mark and to an extent the wait is worth it and things do come together even if I wasn’t always totally confidant with how it was getting there.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Having the protagonist go from district to district to flesh out the settings a decent enough idea and the main characters a fairly chill, cool guy.
Though the dialogue does create suspicion, intrigue, it does also plod/pad in equal measure at times.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Finally decided to sit down and watch Acca.
This show had its lovers/haters I’m sure, having watched it my feelings are mixed.
It is a slight breath of fresh air I’ll give it that and makes me want to maybe re-assess of adaptations of the author’s work.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: The only assayas film I've encountered so far that I disliked was Irma Vep, even though the lead actress was great, the surrounding performances, especially by Jean-Pierre-Lenaud were awful. Sils Maria I was initially evasive of because I'd heard that the relationship between Binoche and Stewarts characters was under-unexplored.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Weersathakul's films are something else entirely...Otherworldly yet still cinematic. I feel a bit underwhelmed after watching the Unknown girl. The identity of the culprit, for example, feel forced for me that take me out our their naturalistic style. I'mmin between Clouds of sils maria too, know it's a good movie but it feels pretentous at times, like the movie Youth
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I also got round to watching Unknown girl by Dardenne, it carries enough moments of their brilliance but I felt they didn’t have as much mastery over their usual pacing style this time round, for the first time it felt like a thriller that played out like a drama, rather than a drama that has a pseudo thriller feel to it.
Going to watch Clouds of sils Maria next.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: The entire second half, which I’d have watched an entire film about is very atmospheric and dreamy/esoteric nearing just exactly the kind of thing I like.
The way he uses/shoots Thailands geography along with his cinematography is impressive, particularly in that second half.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: He shoots something simple like a chopping scene in a strangely engaging way, the scene with the old woman going into the cave is also very impressively shot and that one driving scenes with that pop song in the background has an airy feel to it.
In some ways I agree that there’s a bit of sensuality to it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: It’s the kind of film that feeling tired/relaxed when watching it isn’t a condemnation of it(although a share of moments in the first half could be patience testing), it’s the sort of film where you aren’t really aware of anything outside of watching the film when you watch it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I finally looked into a Weersathakul film, Tropical Malady. I don’t even know how to give a star rating for this film.
SuperMario
I'm still on the fence with Alice & Zouroku. Like the title suggests, the warm chemistry between those two are its strongest point, but those moments are far and few in between as the story progresses and I don't care one bit about the Red Queen storyline. I might drop this one if the story doesn't improve
SuperMario
@Lenlo: 3 episodes anf Berserk still hasn't grabbed me as much. Yep facial expressions are really off-putting
Lenlo
Man... the facial expression in Berserk for the 3D models are, ever so slowly, killing me.
AidanAK47
Alright. Tommarrow I will get out all those posts I am late on seeing as the impressions are all finished.
AidanAK47
SukaSuka still has me mixed. On one hand there really are some great ideas and some well executed moments. But some of the dialogue is a bit typical of a light novel and the fanservice is really shameless. The massage at the end of the episode was something the show could really do without.
Konstantinos Travlos
I am in love with RE:Creators. I have no idea if they will keep it as good, but these two first episodes did all the right things.
AidanAK47
Alright, Easter made me lazy so it's time to play catch up.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Puran: Or even Georgiou Nikolaidis while I'm at it, morning patrol is a great mood piece. Not familiar with the other guy.
Puran
@Kaiser: No Grammatikos recommendation? :)
SuperMario
I still enjoy Zero pretty much. I like the contrast between the beastfallen and Zero. The hilarious lines sound more like accidental to me, not the best product but I enjoy the ride so far
SuperMario
@Kaiser: agree with everything you said. Apparently Haneke put Flashmob on hold because the main actress was conflicting in her schedule, so he decided to do Happy End instead
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Does the old man represent gritty anime of old? I don't know honestly I'm just throwing it out there.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: In case you hadn't heard, Haneke dropped the Flashmob movie and is now doing one about the refugee crisis.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: To whoever will be playing Godard in that biopic, I'd wonder if they could capture how incredibly douchey he sounds irl lol
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: There is such a big divide between 50s/60s Bresson and 70s/80s Bresson.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Lathimos and Avaranas remind me in an odd way of Tarr in that they're the only Greek filmakers people seem to talk about , Check out Koundorous and Theodorous Angelopolous' works if you can.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Meh, I don't like that sort of overly on the nose social commentary some American films and tv shows do in recent years.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Godards extremely hit or miss with me. Hazanavicius did the artist I think, but I'd sooner recommend Biancnieves as a stronger example of a modern take on silent cinema or maybe a Guy Maddin film.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Lotznitza directed a gentle creature not Zvyagintsev, though the latter is a fantastic director, Leviathan's ending hit me very very hard, its gut punching and I appreciated that the return never went into too much detail regarding the father.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: off topic, I didn't realize Get Out having such buzz reception. It's coming here next week so I will get to watch it
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Michel Hazanavicius makes a biopic about Jean-Luc Godard and Anne Wiazemsky (the actress in Au Hasard Balthazard), which I think will be interesting. I considered The Lobster one of the best film out of that year so I anticipate his next movie a hell lot. Yep, I watched few movies from Andrey Zvyagintsev and he certainly is in my radar. Bleak, social commentary, technical impressive
AidanAK47
Oh, it's confirmed that was what was actually said in Japanese. Well...that's rather cringe worthy.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Can't say I am too fond of it myself. Though that arrow to the knee reference definitely sounds like something the translator added in.
Anonymous1026829
Holy shit Zero is hilarious. "I used to be a mercenary like you once. But then I took an arrow to the knee." "My magic is super weak so I need a powerful offering. Can you loan me your head please?" The comedy is so pointed and understated.
Vonter
I do like how contrasting Zelda is to Nier in the sense that. Zelda cares more about how the game plays and making the player have fun constantly but doesn't care about telling something. Nier Automata doesn't care what it throws to the player but cares a lot about it tells the things that happen to player.
Vonter
I think this is a hard game to score. Mainly because IMO the combat has wear out a bit do to the repetition and the sidequests have been a mixed bag with some being relevant to the plot or themes and some being just fodder to level up. On the other hand the game has a lot of implications, subtext and symbolism that so far has been enriching to reflect upon.
AidanAK47
@Vonter, Actually wrote up 4/5s of a review on Nier Automata but with the new season I haven't had time to finish writing the review. Though my thoughts on it are similar to yours.
Vonter
Nier Automata has a 10+ hour prologue. So far the game feels like it's more interested in delivering strong emotions than a compelling narrative, not that script is poor but seems disjointed in a way, circling around the themes of existentialism, purpose and truth without overexpositing about these things. It also some moments remind me of Fragile Dreams. Like the despair.
AidanAK47
The old man is the one I can't pin down. Been thinking he might represent the kind of anime that's critically lauded but sadly unpopular. Makes sense as he's one of the few on the opening that doesn't stand near ads for his anime. Or else he's a live action drama representative.
AidanAK47
Been wondering about the Re:Creators characters. We got the obvious representatives from Magical girl, Mecha, Light novel and video game. The knight girl looks like clear homage to Saber from Fate so a Visual novel representive? The psycho girl looks to be a chunni anime representative. And the guy who appeared at the end of ep 2 is clearly Shounen.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: The Ramsay one sticks out as the most interesting to me as does the lathimos one. I'm curious about that Russian one about the woman looking for her imprisoned husband as I'd like to watch more contempory Russian films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: If you can get passed the accents Ramsay did a strong piece of social realism in the 90s called Ratcatcher.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I think the only Baumbach film I've seen is Frances Ha and I liked the new wavey feel it had. With The lobster and re-watching dogtooth I was able to get into Lathimos' pitch black humour alot more. I've never actually seen a hong-sang so film.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, I still really enjoy it but I do get what you mean. Looking at the series overall so far it does feel like there was lost potential.
Amagi
I honestly still don't know what to think of LWA. I wasn't a fan of the formularic first half but the second half doesn't really catch me either. I loved the first OVA though.
AidanAK47
Well I will be damned. That G Koh commenter managed to predict the inclusion of Yggdrasil in Little Witch Academia. Nicely done.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: sadly i won't make it this year. I wanna try the Toronto International Film Fest next time whenever I have a chance
SuperMario
@Kaiser:you heard about this year's Cannes selection?Overall it's solid, not many that scream "masterpiece" for me.Overall I'm exciting for Hong Sang Soo's new movies (he has 2 movies screening at Cannes and 1 already aired at Berlin.What the hell),and The Killing of the Scared Deer(Yorgos Lnthimos), You were never really here (Lynne Ramsay),Okja(Bong Joon Ho) and Meyerowitz Stories(Noah Baubach)
Kaiser-Eoghan
Hmmm...just found out That Blame! 2017 is being done by a the Ajin director, not sure how I felt about that.
AidanAK47
Think this is the best time to end the series too as the difficultly was getting to be a bit too cheap.
AidanAK47
Lore wise it's pretty disappointing. Ending the game with an enemy that doesn't really have that much relevance. But Gameplay wise it was excellent. The final area was just beautiful.
Lenlo
Ringed City was a great piece of DLC and a good way to end the series imo.
AidanAK47
Dark souls sure can give you workout. Finally got around to finishing the ringed city DLC. Funny thing is that people were raving about how hard Midir was when I didn't have that much trouble with him. Gaol gave me some trouble but I managed it. Hardest was the demon prince and god I hate multi stage boss fights. Such a goddamn pain.
SuperMario
Atom still waiting for suitable subs. I swear to God, for a completist like myself the wait is unbearable, especially it should've been available already
HelghastKillzone
Yes it is.
Anonymous1020539
I mean...
Anonymous1020539
Re:producers is really great
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: I can see myself chancing more of it, I kind of caught into its rhythm a bit.
AidanAK47
Novels are actually really short. About 90 pages long per volume. They really could cover this in a single cour.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, SukaSuka? From what I could tell it covered the first two chapters of the light novel. Each novel has 5 chapters. Though the first and last chapter are more of a prologue and epilogue respectively.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Actually if shuumatsu's first episode is going faster than the novel, roughly how much so? Its still obviously a slow burn in animated format but how much was covered in episode 1?
AidanAK47
Could have done without the huge infodump but otherwise still loving Re:Creators. Seeing a magical girl shocked over her own level of destructive power was great.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Eh, I liked the use of music early on in shuumatsu and theres a good mood set up early on along with a good opening scene but the later parts of the episode except maybe for the after credits bit get a shrug from me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Kado has made its hook, now it needs not to keep holding its cards and get going.
SuperMario
hmmm, don't know what to think about Kado ep2. Still good but I expected more
SuperMario
But really my mentality is that this site comes first. Getting more traffic and improve the site are my top priorities, then "what I wanna do for myself" comes later
SuperMario
@Travlos: guess you won't have to read me this season :). Haven't checked out the last episode of Kado yet but based from the first 2 episodes I think you'd enjoy that show.
Don’t worry. It’s something Aidan and me both agree on. We pretty much write for ourselves, otherwise we couldn’t have stayed this long. I get a chance to go off track once in a while to write something I wanna write.
Konstantinos Travlos
@SuperMario. I am definitely watching Shingeki no Koyjin 2, Shingeki no Bahamut 2, Re:Creators, Little Witch Academia, and probably Kado and Zero Kara. I may also do Zipang this season.
On the reaction reaction. What you say is ok. But remember, a hobby is something you do for yourself. There is a limit to how much you should care about the views of others. :)
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Or if I can use a quote from Chang from Black lagoon : "A fragranced shit will forever still retain the smell of shit"
Lenlo
As most likely the biggest Berserk fan in this chatbox, its better but that doesnt make it good. Spraying fabreeze on crap doesnt make it any more appealing. Yet I will watch it anyways.
Anonymous1018231
You don't even know
Anonymous1018231
Lies Aidan it is soooo much better
Anonymous1017807
Tbh I'm enjoying Alice to Zouroku so much simply because I identify with the old guy's no-nonsense attitude. It's fun to see the annoying loli get put in her place. X.D
AidanAK47
Anyway Bam is supposed to be covering it. Seeing as he covered the first season.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I watched the first episode of the second season. Better? Yes, but only slightly.. It has all the same problems as the first season.
Anonymous1017501
and nobody's covering it lol
Anonymous1017501
Like dramatically
Anonymous1017501
It really is much better
Anonymous1017501
You know guys its not too late to start watching Berserk Season 2...
AidanAK47
I just get annoyed when interaction is like "HUMAN, YOUR EMOTION RESPONSE IS DIFFERENT. I THEORIZE THIS IS THE REASON YOUR EMOTIONAL RESPONSE IS DIFFERENT."
Their is a definite layer of pretentiousness in how it's written, seeing how nobody gets annoyed when every character tries to psychological profile them.
AidanAK47
@Mario, I have heard word that these two episodes were a prologue story and the real story is going to kick into gear next episode. But if the characters keep talking like this then it's not going to matter what happens. It will just be terrible.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Jojo part 5 died for this. That makes it all the sadder. Plus it's two cour so this show is gonna be on for half a year.
SuperMario
Being said all that I will follow it for 1 more episode
SuperMario
And then that girl who passed away because of the reset. I feel my emotions drying up at that point. Tasteless. Heartless
SuperMario
Wanna say the same thing regarding Sagrada Reset as well. I have the feeling the show tries to sound smart that ultimately if I hear someone talks like this in real life, I would go punch his face. Manipulating the social worker by slitting your own wrist? WHAT? Asking a girl about her rules, then whenever she answers you give your own warped opinions on it to sound like you know it all? WHAT
Anonymous1016169
@Aidan: Lol, Sagrada reminds me of how I used to write. Pretentious, overly complex dialogue that nobody would use in real life unless they were trying too hard. It grits on my ears so much that I don't think I can keep watching it, especially because this is probably how it's going to be for the whole series.
Anonymous1016169
@Amagi: I feel your pain. I used to enjoy those types of shows, but I've found more and more since getting out of high school that they just make me want to take a nap. It doesn't help that they're everywhere. X.D
AidanAK47
God Sagrada Reset is frustrating. So many good ideas, all absolutely ruined by the dialogue and characters. If you just changed the dialogue a bit and made the characters emote more then this would be so very interesting. But they manage to drain the life out of the story.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, in most cases you can easily write off the ones not worth your time based on the summery. Occasional those kinds of show can turn out to be worth watching but it just doesn't happen often enough.
Amagi
Nothing against those types of anime in general, but it's just not aimed at me I guess. - I also should specify: school (semi)harem, not school alone. I enjoy Tsuki ga Kirei.
Amagi
I really love this season but I should stop testing the school- and shoujo stuff. It's almost never worth the time and it always bores me so much that I have to stop watching anime for a few hours.
Anonymous1016169
@Travlos: Why does a hobbyist artist care when someone critiques their art or a fanfic writer care about reader feedback? When you do something you enjoy, it's normal to want to improve and other people's opinions are important for that.
SuperMario
@Travlos: because 1) We still need to listen to what readers say to improve and 2) we're debating more about rating system, which I also feel the need of upgrading. btw, any shows that catch your interests so far this season?
Konstantinos Travlos
Why do you guys care about what someone thinks about your reviews? You are doing a good enough thing as is, and t is a hobby. Do your thing and do not lose time on this.
Anonymous1015915
I think I'm just gonna follow sukasuka and re:creators this season. Seem to of shown the most potential universally.
Anonymous1015442
Soy and almond milk are also available as alternatives for the lactose intolerant.
Anonymous1015442
From the manga it seems like it would translate well into an anime with the right production values so I think I'm going to try it. I was mostly concerned that they'd push the melodrama even more through the roof, haha. I did see some of the reviews on it here and they made me hopeful that it was fairly well-executed.And of course the milk can be chocolate. Just not vanilla, vanilla milk is yuck i
Lenlo
Its certainly making me happy I waited until the end of the season to binge it.
SuperMario
I'd have the milk as well... Need more milk to my life.
SuperMario
Hope Scum's Wish entertains you, Lenlo. ^^
Lenlo
I will say the sound design has been great for Scums Wish though I have not read the manga to see how it matches up
Lenlo
I dont think "enjoyed" is the right word for this kind of show, but I do know im going to finish it.

Also, can the milk be chocolate?
Anonymous1015350
@Lenlo: That's true, but I also feel like everyone here needs some milk. And I've been reading the Scum's Wish manga and can't decide if it'll be worth it to watch the anime.
Lenlo
Scums Wish, 4 episodes in, has been the perfect little dose of depression I crave from each anime season.
Lenlo
I have to say, its a pretty fun break from super srs anime discussion sometimes
Anonymous1014938
There's so much sass in this chatbox sometimes I can't even. :.D
AidanAK47
Also please note that if data gathering results do not support your hypothesis that there will be no refunds
AidanAK47
I will have you know my data gathering services are quite expensive and I don't operate until paid.
Anonymous1014125
Aidan is providing the data for us.
Lenlo
You do know that for the scientific method, you make a hypothesis and then you run experiments to produce data to prove or disprove said hypothesis. It cant just sit in limbo and then you go "I was right". You have to provide data at some point. At this point, you have yet to provide any data to support what you say.
Sir Robin
You seem to have never heard of the scientific method then Aidan. You don't need proof before you formulate an hypothesis. Fortunately this most recent development of you being wrong supports it.
AidanAK47
I am sure Sir Robin would be delighted to hear this but I think I was wrong in my assessment of SukaSuka(Shūmatsu Nani Shitemasu ka? Isogashii Desu ka? Sukutte Moratte Ii Desu ka?) That insert song at the begining of the episode was masterful and a number of things have changed my mind about it. It may be more interesting than I first expected. First novel was still pretty boring though.
AidanAK47
Should have another impressions post up today. As for what I am covering that's Little Witch Academia, Attack on Titan and Sekaisuru Kado.
AidanAK47
At least we never have to fight tooth and nail to cover something as what we want to cover never clashes.
SuperMario
Which mean 2 PA Works, 2 original shows and 3 slice-of-life shows. Well done Mario for being predictable and consistently boring as ever
Total users: 29

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