Posted by psgels on 2 July 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews, Yojou-han Shinwa Taikei




The Noitamina time-slot surely rocked beyond belief this season. Alongside Sarai-ya Goyou aired the possibly even better Yojou-han Shinwa Taikei, the latest product of Masaaki Yuasa of Kaiba-fame. This time, he went for a ton-of-dialogue artsy character-study slash college life series, in which we follow the lead character as he explores a wide variety of different clubs and lifestyles during his years in college throughout many parallel dimensions. And it works out wonderfully.

At first sight, the way in which this series keeps resetting itself after every episode may seem weird at first, but it actually was a brilliant method to flesh out its different characters. Because of its very frequent resets, this stands out even more than series that did similar things in the past, like Higurashi and Umineko. Because of this, we get to see a ton of different sides of the characters that would never have been able to been shown without these resets, and the most important part is that we see Watashi develop in many different ways throughout each episode. The different side-characters all have their own parts to play in Watashi (the lead character)’s world and everything comes together wonderfully in the final episodes.

All of this is accompanied by some truly excellent dialogue. This series is based on an actual novel, rather than a manga or light novel, and it really shows. The dialogue is incredibly fast and you really need to pay attention to keep up with it, but as a narration it offers very detailed descriptions of the situations that Watashi finds himself in, which is nearly always very imaginative in the ways that it does so, with quite a number of witty remarks.

One potential pitfall could have been for the series to lose itself in either its dialogue and visuals, but neither happens. There are a ton of details stuffed into this series in order to make all episodes stand out, but in the same way the main message and characters remain deceptively simple on the outside. In comparison, while Kuchuu Buranko felt a bit like a loose cannon at times, every moment of Yojou-han is instead meant to bring colour to the life in which Watashi is living, and build up for the episodes that are still to come. Because the huge amount of building up, the first half of this series is decidedly less impressive than the second half, but the build-up is definitely worth it.

It’s a series that doesn’t try to provoke the biggest emotional response, but as a character-study it really stands out as a minor masterpiece here, in the way that it very subtly manages to flesh out and characterize its entire cast. Especially after the final episodes, it stands out as my favourite show of the series that premiered during the past spring season.

Storytelling: 10/10 – Fresh, and varied, skillfully combining repetition with new ideas to flesh itself out. Top notch narration.
Characters: 9/10 – The formula really allows the characters to come alive and show many different sides of themselves.
Production-Values: 9/10 – It’s Masaaki Yuasa. Do I need to say anything more?
Setting: 9/10 – Spoilerific to go in detail here but yeah: this one rocks too.

Suggestions:
Mind Game (another one of those movies that I’d review entirely different if I were to watch it today)
Amatsuki
Revolutionary Girl Utena

15 Responses

  1. Topspin says:

    Easily my favorite of the season as well. I’m glad they still make anime like this, when they could easily just sell childish dreck like Angel Beats or over-wrought nonsense like Bakemonogatari.

  2. AuroraFlame says:

    I love this show, it’s hilarious, but it’s a pain in the ass to watch. There’s dialogue spam, which I have to rewind for. But then I spent so much time looking at the dialogue that I didn’t get to see the artwork and backgrounds, so I rewind again. But by that time, I forgot what the dialogue was. It takes me almost an hour an episode…. maybe I have ADD.

    But from what I saw, this and Five Leaves were definitely the best this season.

  3. Puran says:

    Aurora, I think pausing this is a mistake. It tries to overwhelm you with visual/audio stimulation and dialogue, so you should let it do it to you. It also makes rewatching it very interesting :)

    It actually slows down a bit when something more important to the general plot happens, so you’re never lost.

  4. Michael says:

    Toppsin, I’ll take you further than that and say it’s easily the best anime of 2010.

  5. Machi says:

    Hm some notes about this show:…
    I think this show just confirms for the better that Masaki Yuuasa is definitely a director to watch out for. I think there is quite an agreement that he is great however I do notice that nobody every particularly mentions why. There are a few reasons at best, mostly in people impressed by his imaginative visuals and the way he ties in all episodes. However, I’d like to take a stab as to giving reasons why he’s a great director through this show.

    What impresses me greatly about him is simply put his conciseness. I don’t think much people realize this about him since the first thing that does come to mind about him from his successful works that he directed, Mind Game, Kaiba, and now I would say Youjou-han unknown but definitely needs attention Vampiyan Kids, and even less successful venture, Kemonozume is that its brimming with details so much so that it is highly advisable to replay the show. However, as Yojou-han shows he knows how say things with the least amount of efforts and frames. Just take for instance his decision at the last episode at how to convey the idea of an end of a journey (Watashi realizing things) and a start (how Watashi will live now that he’s gotten a new outlook on life). What he does is he reverses the OP and ED, a device many are familiar with to start and end the show, not in order to build up emotion or nostalgia (like say Full Metal Alchemist episode 63 did by playing the OP at the ending to heighten the emotion at the life of Hohenheim) but precisely to emphasize the end and the beginning, all this without having to create a scene or dialogue to bring the point home. Another great example from Yojou-han would be episode 10 itself acting as three things in one episode a summary, commentary, and new episode itself (I don’t think any anime director could pull that off!) I even suspect to some degree that after the first episode he may have decided to pull back from adapting too much dialogue from the novel, since the first episode the visuals and dialogue did compete however at the proceeding episodes it found a way to work together.

    Of course as I speak of his conciseness I would also praise him for the replay value of his shows. There are as people would easily notice a ton of detail in his episode that you’d probably miss out. I don’t think I want to talk about those details which bring so much life to the show but I would like to focus on another sort of detail. The way the entire episode becomes a significant detail itself in the grand scheme of things. Again I focus on Yojou-han to emphasize this point. As Psgels said the first half of the series, mainly the campus clubs, may not be as strong as the latter half but nevertheless are build ups that pays off in the second half. They are the strength precisely because they are one huge detail on itself that act what I think details are often forgotten to be, backbones. The episodes act as the skeleton that supports the entire show, which is why it’s quite clear why each episode never feels as if it were a waste, each episode counts. One cannot appreciate Watashi’s realization without first watching even his most nonsensical failure, the proxy war, or even more importantly skipping out the tennis episode. Heck the I think the strongest episode is the episode that relishes on using the previous episodes as details, namely episode 10.

    Another strength of Yuuasa shines through with Yojou-han. As we see him visualizing that which is abstract, parallel worlds. The repeat of each episode, the subtle changes, along with that which is constant we do see that each world is same yet at the same time different. Each world is expansive yet claustrophobic. The way Yuuasa handled such abstract ideas and paradoxes is I feel brilliant, it never feels contrived or overworked as you understand it smoothly. I feel he does so through such simple details in visuals, namely color (as viewers should pay attention to) which one should understand in better after the 10th episode (which after watching that episode I replayed all the rest). His introduction of such a detail of visuals speaks well of how to inject ones own style, after all if he left to just adapting the material by itself he’d be content to just show details narrated by the book (or to be more precise by Watashi) instead he realizes what he could add himself.

    On the other hand as I praise Yojou-han I do rank it a notch below Kaiba and Mind Game and the reason why is I feel is not because of Yuuasa’s weakness but rather because of his strength as a director. I think what bogged down Yojou-han was that as imaginative as it was in experimenting with the narratives of college life not because of the dejavu episodes (though I will get on this point latter) but rather how easily identifiable the narrative is. Ease in identifying the narrative in that you’ll find yourself realizing early on what Watashi’s epiphany will be. This fault I feel is not something an imaginative visualization could avoid, let’s face it this narrative feels very exhausted with the rise in interest in college life that would also come to the same conclusion. Even more so when the show is a slice of life that we all recognize, we all have to grab opportunity when it dangles in front of us and we all have one way or another our own vision of what out rose colored life would be, so that its so easy to see what path Watashi would take and needs to take (after all his name is only really mentioned once at the end otherwise Watashi as he refers to himself in person is I in other words you yourself). I find this to be a fault in that Masaki Yuuasa looking at a previous work Kaiba has such strong narratives because of we never really see what path needs to be taken or what path will be taken. In Kaiba we start out as lost and as disoriented as the main character, in fact we’re immersed even more strongly as being in the same position as the character himself as for most part he’s mute and simply passive observers much like ourselves). We question the actions taken by the people around him and the world, we may or may not agree with Kaiba. In Yojou-han Watashi we can easily see is a greenhorn still new to the world. We know what path he needs to take and even and even come to that realization much earlier than him, only to be validated later on at his realizations in the second half. The fault of this as I said lies in the strength of Yuuasa, as one recalls another strong difference of Kaiba and Yojou-han. Namely that Yuuasa’s strength lies strongly in expressing the abstract, intangible, and philosophical that which goes beyond the banal. Yojou-han despite all its imaginative setting and visuals is still very much grounded in reality, as its slice of life lessons shine through.

    On the other hand another fault I find as I mentioned with the dejavu is not so much in the dejavu but I as feel in the source material itself. I can’t say I am entirely familiar with the book the anime was adapted from but I do think while Masaki Yuuasa’s injected his style the style of the sources author is still very much present. A style which I think is incredibly verbose, compared to Yuuasa whom I feel speaks volumes in his visuals. I do feel it bogs him down as he can’t necessarily spread his visuals as much as he could, for if he did we’d have something more conflicting in the balance of visuals and dialogue. Yuuasa managed to find quite a great balance of visuals and dialogue after the first episode, at that same time however his visuals could never explode the way it did in Kaiba as it constantly portrayed something beyond our imagination (as one can clearly see just how imaginative Yuuasa is). I’m not saying the source isn’t imaginative, it certainly is, but that Yuuasa is such an incredibly imaginative man that you know he can achieve more. Nevertheless, Yojou-han is indeed a masterpiece that showcases the strengths of Yuuasa, and as such is my reason in saying he is a great director.

  6. Puran says:

    Machi, wow that was a long post… :P

    I thin Yuasa’s imagination really shined in Yojou-han though. The setting was realistic so he had much less room to experiment visually (compared to say kaiba, where he could practically show us anything he wanted, since we didn’t have any set expectations from the setting).

    Yojou-han was filled with visual tricks that actually complemented the story (maybe Yuasa should give some advice to Shinbo sometime… :P ). I think you are focusing too much on the visual side, expecting more crazy stuff too happen, while Yojou-han was always a more or less, down to earth story. I think it fit Yuasa perfectly, he is trying new things, you can’t expect every one of his series to have the imaginative setting of Kaiba, or the craziness of Mind Game. Yuasa has a strong imagination but that’s not his only good quality and this series let him show that.

  7. Machi says:

    Oh I’m aware his imagination isn’t his only strong point. His imagination does shine through as we see that injected well into the narrative, at times even bursting over. We do see it well in this series as he transform the mundane to something fantastic. However, I do feel that with this he did have to pare himself down, which is a double edged sword, but did so nicely. What my quibble was that Yojou-han despite being transformed into the fantastic is still very down to earth, what I found to be Yuuasa’s strength is that he could handle very abstract concepts (such as memory) that most people would shrike or overwork that I do feel allows him to shine more. The source is abstract no doubt but very much still mundane. Yet, this show DOES show his good qualities no argument there.

  8. Machi says:

    God I wish this thing had edit… In the end Puran I would say that Yojou-han is undoubtedly a masterpiece.

    As for whether to really rate it higher or lower than Kaiba. I would say it doesn’t matter as that is a matter of preference, that’s why I emphasized that the very long post is purely my own opinion on certain matters. In my case I have more of an inclination to the wilder and more abstract topic (I love the topic of memory some of my favorite films are about memory La Jetee & the Resnais films from Night and Fog to Muriel). Others will easily find beauty more in how pared down but still highly imaginative this down to earth but fantastic series is. In fact I would easily now say that Yojou-han is better way to introduce oneself to Yuuasa, precisely because its a great showcase of what Yuuasa has to offer at his best but at the same time not to jarringly radical as the earlier works (which I do have trouble getting friends to watch because they can’t swallow the animation style, this I think would be easier to get them to watch.)

  9. Topspin says:

    @Michael, yeah I’d say so far it’s the best of the year. And summer doesn’t look like it will given it any competition.

  10. Michael says:

    @Topspin
    Whenever I could write about a series and only that series for nearly three months, cry at its ending, and just love its characters, I know I’ve watched a series that just comes a few times during my lifetime.

    Tatami Galaxy is one of those series. I’ve never really written consistently on a series as consistently I did with Tatami Galaxy. It’s amazing.

  11. AuroraFlame says:

    @Puran
    I find that I get distracted wondering about what they said if I blatantly miss an entire line. But there is some discretion: I understand what the writers are trying to convey and, like you said, the big moments are easy to identify and much more difficult to ruin.

  12. thomas says:

    Enough stuff is repeated – especially the important stuff, I don’t think it’s necessary to rewind anything.

    I love the way Yuasa plays with symbolism; you can rewatch the entire show and you can see they planned everything perfectly from the start.

    Yuasa’s easily my favourite director, his quirkyness and experimentation and imagination is exactly what I love about anime.

    Best show of the year by far.

  13. thomas says:

    I think you could have added a bit of depth to this review by quickly analysing some of the key philosophies that Yuasa so beautifully expressed: Accept who you are. No matter what you do, you are you and everything you do will be a part of you. Accept who other people are, at first glance you may be quick to judge but there multiple sides to everyone. And last but not least: Have no regrets. No matter what you choose, your life will never be perfect, but that’s okay!

    It’s all incredibly optimistic and I personally would’ve been okay with a slightly more cynical conclusion, but let’s face it, we all wanted the romance thing to work out for Watashi.

  14. chounokoe says:

    The only thing I would like to add is, that I have slight problems with how everyone is labeling Yuasa the creative genius lately.

    Yes, he has definitely creative vision and his adaptions always add something to the original work, be it in content or visually.
    Nekojiru, Mind Game and Yojouhan were only rewritten by him and in case of Kemonozume and Kaiba he was only the director, not writer.

    Therefore, while I agree that he always adds his very own creative technique to an anime, I wouldn’t label him responsible for ‘the genius that is Yojouhan (for example)’.

    But I think that is also the only problem I have with your blog sometimes, psgels. Sometimes it seems like you deliberatly blind out the fact that something is an adaption.

  15. psgels psgels says:

    chonokoe: yeah, I agree that at times I tend to ignore this, yeah.

    However, you should note that Masaaki Yuasa not only directed Kemonozume, but also wrote its series composition and worked on as many parts of that series as possible. With Kaiba, he is also credited as the one who originally came up with its premsie (it also doesn’t seem to have a series composition).

    With Yojou-han, I indeed forgot to credit the mysterious Makoto Ueda:

    http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/people.php?id=85031

    But the problem is that there just doesn’t seem to be any information about this guy.

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Kaiser Eoghan
Oh. whoa whoa, I thought Mario was taking the piss/joking with that post...thought wrong.
afgm
@SuperMario: That sucks man. How are you holding up? I know long distance relationships can be hard to maintain -- it gets pretty lonely.
Kaiser Eoghan
Really glad to see that Vinland saga has gotten properly good again, it was starting to get back on track slowly but surely, now it, with this new chapters revelation fully has,
Kaiser Eoghan
Ireland was mentioned in Nabari no ou and an episode of original gundam, two of gundam 00s characters are Irish.
Kaiser Eoghan
I don't like generalized statements, much prefer Colonelized ones actually.
Kaiser Eoghan
There was a dating sim adaptation by studio deen in 2003 that did a girl of the week format, one of the girls was finnish.
SuperMario
Just broke up with my girl after 3 years. Figure that it never works out for a long-term relationship... (That's a generalized statement right there)
AidanAK47
So that's one. Can't say I remember seeing Finland elsewhere besides that show where all the countries are turned into anime characters.
AidanAK47
Luvia Edelfelt is from Finland?! Well damn you learn something new every day.
AidanAK47
And now I find a screenshot of them saying Miyu is from Finland. Which is weird because nothing of the sort was mentioned in the manga.
AidanAK47
Most I seen was anime characters saying Norway which was generally used as a means of saying NO WAY.
AidanAK47
@Anon48363, its sad that when I see a comment like this my first reaction is suspecting its a Bot. Thanks though.
@Masky, nope. No they didn't. I think this may be in your head.
Anonymous48363
Been enjoying the site for 7-8 years, if not longer. Thank you for your efforts in keeping the editorial line intact wrt reviews and happy to discover new content in the process. Keep up the good work!
Masky
Anyway, speaks of your "high taste" I guess. Finland gets brought up in some of otaku fanservice material for some bizarre reason. I'm weirded out by that since Finland is most obscure backwater place I've seen mentioned most out of other obscure countries xD
Masky
Of course it is possible I'm remembering wrong too(and did read wrong) and they did mention it only once :P
Masky
How funny you say that and then mention that weird magical girl spinoff right after wards xD The part where they introduce Miyu to rest of class has teacher saying she is transfer student from Finland, unless I read subtitles wrong
AidanAK47
Gonna wait on the Prisma Illya episode post. Figure I cover two episodes in one considering the slow pace isn't giving me much to work with.
Got to say I thought this would give me much more to talk about.
AidanAK47
I don't remember Finland ever being brought up in anime. Or video games. Or anything for that matter.
Speaking of the preview I have at least checked the source material. Just need to buckle down and start writing it.
Masky
@Bam: I know right? :D
Bam
I agree with K-off regarding keep the business end of stuff off the shoutbox- I just have no means of communicating with all of ya'll. We can Skype, but I suggest Google hangouts for conferencing. That way we may be able to record special podcasts, and now's probably a good time to get this to the next level.
Bam
I also volunteer to help with the workload for the season preview. I would be down to cover two series, but they have to appeal to me, cause there's no way I can be fair and PG-13 with the reviews of aweful shows.
Bam
@Masky: "Generalized statements are in general rather annoying". Hehe, that awefully sounds woefully like a generalized statement to me m8.
Bam
First Dark Souls III DLC titled Ashes of Ariandel just confirmed for an Oct 25th release. Thankfully this time, all regions and platforms are getting the expnasion on the same day. Here is a reveal trailer to launch the Hype Zeppelin:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iu1NCPMC7D0
Bam
Friend: please send me, or post, the finished banner once you have it complete. I would like to take a gander. Thank you.
Masky
...Espicially since characters supposedly from there rarely have names that sound Finnish.
Masky
So anyhoo, so why is Finland one of countries that tends to get name dropped a lot in anime/manga/japanese video games? As Finnish person that weirds me out
K-Off
@Friend Damn, kind of surprised to see how abstract some of those concept art are for Mulan. But generalizations are just easier to make if all they care about is validation.
Masky
Generalized statements are in general rather annoying, but everyone loves to make them anyway for some reason :D
Friend
I'm nearing completion with our banner, in terms of work-hours Id say 3 hours? But in real life that equates to about 4 days because of stuff.
Friend
Something that annoys me: when a fellow artist makes a generalized statement about the industry by saying something silly like "japanese animated films have more creative input involved." Uggh Google "Alex Nino Mulan Concept" and tell me if you still think that. Sorry about that X/
SuperMario
And it might sound weird to you guys, especially majority of you are in one of the hottest days of summer, but I'm gonna head off to snow mountain for skiing this coming weekend. So expect the weekly posts will be a bit later than usual.
SuperMario
I don't know if that guy @Bond is still lurking around here, but I'm still interested In doing that thing with him
SuperMario
@Aidan: imho, those numbers don't really mean if we have nothing to compare them to. I'll say the ratio between original/ all anime for particular seasons would tell us a lot better
AidanAK47
But it does counter the point of "We don't get enough original anime anymore" which in itself was a pretty silly statement.
AidanAK47
Of course just because they are original doesn't automatically qualify them as good.
AidanAK47
@Anon44887, that logic would apply if it was an exception. 9 original shows last season, 14 original shows this season. 20 in the next. Are they three seasons all an exception?
Anonymous44887
@AidanAK47: An exception that proves the rule
Vonter
Just to ask does any of the shows being reviewed have a great soundtrack. Just asking for asking.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: I recall he posted under the name Bold/bond, the same poster who made the chart.
AidanAK47
Who was it again bemoaning that we don't get enough original(Not adaption) anime anymore? Cause there are 20 original shows next season. Great for anime but hard for me cause what am I gonna write in the preview?
AidanAK47
I am a bit too stubborn to burnout.
@afgm, I didn't change a thing.
Anonymous38539
I hope AidanAK47 would not suffer an Anime Burnout. I love this site and it pains to think that one day, no one will be writing the seasonal previews and yearly summary.
SuperMario
@Aidan: you have 91 days's episode as 9 instead of 7
AidanAK47
Bloody hell, even the spambots are referencing Pokemon Go now.
K-Off
For future reference, let's direct admin dialogue to email, apart from direct feedback.
@Mario We're working on allowing users to set up accounts.
SuperMario
And the constant anonymous names just keep bugging me. Can we make it back to the old shoutbox, where you have to put down your name in order to write message?
SuperMario
I think it's one thing leads to another. he's getting too burnout that he doesn't know what to write anymore.
AidanAK47
@Anon36049, pretty much what he said. Though it seems to be a combination of anime burnout and writers block.
Anonymous36271
He suffered from anime burnout and is getting on with real life.
Anonymous36049
Hi guys I havent been around for a long time. Does anyone know what happened to psgels? I see that the new posts are not his.
AidanAK47
Disgaea 2 coming to steam. Sweet.
Gotta finish Disgaea 1 and hope they don't screw up the port on release day again.
AidanAK47
Illuminati are everywhere, regardless of wherther it's anime or not. Sword Art Online was the work of the illuminati. All in the name of the gaint magic eyeball triange god do they rule the landscape of entertainment medium.
Also Magic Eyeball-kun also argees that Rem is best girl. And none shall dare denounce that claim.
SuperMario
@Anony35181: never thought they're that much interested in anime thou
Anonymous35181
@supermario, illuminati confirmed
SuperMario
Is it just me or couple of messages from the shoutbox just gone missing?
Topgavin
Haven't been watching it myself, but apparently in Taboo Tattoo, that large-chested high school girl died while running *onto a live battlefield* to check on her boyfriend with a shirt that said "flag". 10/10
K-Off
@afgm Sent you a message.
@Friend Looks good, I'd be interested in seeing multiple witches as well.
Anonymous32745
Chemotherapy is a cause of cancer rather than a cure.
Anonymous32745
If you know someone dying of cancer, immediately inform them that allopathic medicine will kill them and turn them to natural remedies which often work.
Anonymous32745
"Medicine and science are powerfully institutionalized, but no institution or profession has existed for the purpose of encouraging people to act reasonably." - Ray Peat
afgm
.
afgm
@Friend: yeah it's a problem
@Koff: I emailed you a while back. did you get it?
Fri3nd
Huh, I can't use my username.
@Bam You're right, I'll work on it.
Bam
@K-off: It's moments like these that really remind you of mortality. People pull thru tho. medical science has come far in that field; but definitely not far enough.
Bam
@Friend: It's looks pretty good. I like Mario's suggestion of a series of witches, but a solitary one is more in-tune with the current banner. I would say however that there is too much dark in the negative space to the right. Could be just me tho.
Bam
@Kaiser: a series of consecutive 'yes'. I was really into Laloux, but FP is the one I liked the most. I've been watching Mr. Robot since season 1, and it's well worth your time. Not really all that cyberpunkish tho; mostly just cyber. And anybody who hasn't read Gibson's masterpiece is a fool of a Took.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Bam: Have you been looking into that Mr Robot series? I heard its meant to be some kind of cyber thriller, it could be our thing. Also have you read Neuromancer?
Kaiser Eoghan
And I suppose that brings me to that stranger things show then, I love horror so I guess that caught my eye, but apparently its a family/kids thing =< don't know whether to bother.
Kaiser Eoghan
I still say it takes me that extra bit of convincing to watch a childrens animated film.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Friend: The banner is in good hands I see.
AidanAK47
Well Coraline wasn't written by Laika. It was written by Neil Gaiman. Laika just adapted it. Still I would like to check out Kubo to see what all the hype is about.
SuperMario
@anony29442: I will watch Kubo this coming week so I will comment on the movie then. But I'm not that surprise if Kubo has a weak writing. Laika never really great at story development: I mean Coraline is exellent, ParaNorman is just okay and Boxstrolls writing is just so underdeveloped and full of plotholes
SuperMario
@friend: wow. It looks awesome. But why only one witch? ^^
Friend
Hey everyone! Just an update on our new banner, here's my WIP up to now: [link src="https://i.imgur.com/0QSv6IK.png
I'm"] trying a witch as a tribute to one of psgel's favorite anime maho shojotai. Feedback is welcome, I have a lot left to do. A 5:1 aspect ratio is the weirdest dimension I've ever painted in
Anonymous29442
I just saw Kubo and the 2 strings and im really shocked at all the praise its receiving. People calling it an instant masterpiece on looks alone but not enough are talking about how underdeveloped the characters and story were. It felt as if they made the whole thing up as they went along to the point where I couldnt suspend my disbelief any longer and got irritated.
Anonymous29415
qualidea code's characters havent become better in terms of how they are written; only that they have been fleshed out in the most generic and trivial of ways as to sympathize with them; and sure, they have become some what likeable in the same way you'd like a person who you heard nothing but kind things about but that does not save the characters from being boring. QC is still a bad show
AidanAK47
@Anon27511, even if the animation was kept consistent the story still can't really escape the done to death aspect of it's story. I agree that the writing has gotten better but despite that the show just feels...meh.
Anonymous27511
Fucking Qualidea Code, as the story and characters become more interesting, the animation and drawing proportionately decreases. Sad they simply do not have the budget to pull off what seems like a potentially very good story
K-Off
@Mike I'm sure you already heard but for some reason I didn't keep up to date. I thought it was strange that releases stopped in March after chapter 68,.
K-Off
Just learned that the writer of my favorite webtoon is battling terminal cancer, but despite it she hopes to finish it someday. God damn I would've never expected this.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Once spilled hot microwaved food over my hand by mistake, hurt for a day.
Kaiser Eoghan
*remaining
Kaiser Eoghan
@Bam: The story and ideas however were better in gandahar I felt. Time masters while good was a bit stop and start in its pace and animation.
I’m definitely interested in Laloux’s other, short animations and Mobius’ comic book work.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Bam: I watched Rene Laloux's remain animated films, Gandahar and time masters, I enjoyed both but not as much as Fantastic planet. I remember we talked about fantastic planet two years ago. Did you see the other two I mentioned. I liked the big moments and the ending to time masters, especially those angel things.
Anonymous27024
Ok. I beat Federation Force. I think the main positive is that the levels were playable despite the lack of voice chat. The bosses took a lot of damage and the beginning and end are relevant to the Prime continuity.
SuperMario
@K-Off: I did it once just like you did, and once when I put a metal bowl into a microwave. So yeah, boys will always be boys.
Bam
I tried my best not to half-ass either of them tho. Any oddity you guys see just write it off as mental exhaustion.
Bam
Okay, I'm officially beat. These two reviews should be considered companion pieces, as some material from one flew into the other. Thank god that episode 08 was not a heavy one, or I'd be completely depleted.
K-Off
Shit, I'm a damn idiot at baking, slightly burnt my hand a minute ago grabbing a hot tray with a wet towl. Why do I even try.
K-Off
@afgm Alright, send me a message at fightthepowwa@gmail.com and we'll work it out.
Bam
*cinematography
Bam
@K-off: I second that, as although the Poirot series has very well-done choreography, casting and music, there is still a little more of that unquantifiable magic sprinkled on the Granada series. But keep watching and I'll guarantee that Suchet will become the quintessential Poirot in your mind as well.
K-Off
I said that while I liked the performance and the direction, I didn't think that it did for Poirot what Granada did for Holmes.
K-Off
@Bam Yeah it is, and generally when I camp I like to stay for 1-2 weeks, places like Niagara or Yellowstone I can pretty much see everything I want to see in a few days so I don't find much value going to those places. The Adirons on the other hand is diverse as hell.
Bam
@K-off: I'm not sure if you mentioned it while I was gone: but did you get to watch any of the Poirot series with David Suchet? And if so, what are your thoughts?
Bam
I generally go to either the Muir Woods north of SF, or the forests around Big Sur. It doesn't take much to please me really.
Bam
@K-ff: is that by Lake Champlain? Cuz I've been there once and loved it.
Bam
@K-off: I thought of a combined post, but my OCD wouldn't allow a skip in the episodic order of the reviews.
K-Off
Usually when you go camping in Yellowstone or Yosemite the tourist industry kills those places, like I'd be on a rowboat and see cars, cabins, and people from a long ways offshore. The Adirondacks are nice because their building codes mandate construction to be hidden behind trees.
K-Off
@Bam My favorite camping spot is the Adirondacks in upstate NY, I went there probably 4-7 times and never get tired of the place. No, I don't have any posts for now, but for future reference consider combining episodic reviews when you get behind. I.E. Episode 6-8 Review
Bam
Also there's a reader in the comment section of Berserk 07 who wants to know if we have a notification system. I vaguely remember a widget that links the site to a FaceBook page. If anybody knows how that works, or if it's still functional, please shed some light on the matter for him/her. Thx.
Bam
@Aidan @K-off @Mario either one of y'all has any post near completion? I'm almost done with Berserk 08 and as previously mentioned, really prefer not to put two reviews up back to back. I think the length of them is already a hassle for some to get thru, let alone two right after eachother. I think it hurts the viewership, but if nothing's on hand then I'll guess I'll just finish up and post mine.
Bam
@Kaiser: I was actually camping near a mountain, but aren't all mountains somewhat holy? That could be my bias tho, since I was raised on the Alborz mountain range, and for me there is something therapeutic about the mountain air.
Kaiser Eoghan
Yes! Looks like the shoutbox is fixed and not deleting posts after 24 hours anymore!
Kaiser Eoghan
lol Or you could live in the shitty suburb where I do and spend your time just waiting for when your internet connection randomly cuts out twice a month or as it has the past few days two-three times a day.
Kaiser Eoghan
Basically bam went up the Holy mountain .
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: ....guy I know who loves war films and I've ended up inadvertedly/un-intentionally gotten him to buy some fucked up Polish horror film that just happens to be set in WW2. lol he's going to be pretty freaked out when he watches it.
Bam
Everything been cool here? Hehe ... looks like I conveniently missed all the hard parts.
Bam
@Mario: thx m8. I wish I could just make it down to Rio on a whim, but then again, I took a much-needed vacation, so I ain't complaining.
SuperMario
Welcome back Bam, I was already convinced that you went to Rio for screwing around. Lol
Bam
Also I apologize for the absence. I was gone somewhere without reliable internet access, and looking back I should've gave a notification.
Either way, I'm back now, and will be jumping on getting those Berserk reviews out as soon as possible.
Bam
Man looky here with the renovations; I like it.
SuperMario
@Vyse: wow. So how was the sites then back from 2005?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: and what is that sh!te you're talking about?
VyseLegendaire
<— fixed
VyseLegendaire
<— me
VyseLegendaire
Ive been a reader since 2005
Kaiser Eoghan
Haha, this'll be fun lol
Kaiser Eoghan
.....that feeling when you keep going on about a show or film but fail to give all the details...and someone goes out and buys it not knowing the full extent of the mad shit their in for...s--t lol
Anonymous24840
any reader from 2005 here....
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: This guy seems interesting: https://letterboxd.com/director/tsai-ming-liang/
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Hmm, not familiar with him.
I really really loved in the mood for love, alot, it emotionally effected me. I even watched it three times.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I couldn't seem to enjoy any of Zimou yangs films apart from Hero, which had some pretty creative fight scenes. I've seen the story of Ricky and some of John-woos films but they were more just silly entertaining exploitation films.
SuperMario
Don't know if you know the Vietnamese-French Tran Anh Hung. His works are stunning too. If you want to check out East-Asian cinema don't forget to check him out.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Yeah, but Park Chan Wood changed the ending, so the author insisted that the Handmaiden is more "inspired" than "based". The third chapter is the weakest part for me
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Of interest, The handmaiden was based on some British book/tv show.
Kaiser Eoghan
I need to completely re-evaluate/get into more Chinese cinema.
Kaiser Eoghan
Doesn't look like I've seen anything by Hong-sang-so.
My favourite Korean actor is song-kang-ho.
Kaiser Eoghan
Theres an anime convention over here in Dublin in three months. Although I haven't been to one in years.
SuperMario
I'm heading to anime convention today. Normally I don't really care about those conventions but I figure I'd come this year to see the taste of it. The only hassle is it's 3-hour drive, which gonna be a pain when I drive back after a long day being there.
SuperMario
Bong Joon-ho, on the other hand,is incredible at writing. His scripts are often layered, sharp and best of all fuses many tones/ genres into one coherent whole. The best thing about this Korean New Wave directors is they all have very distinctive voices. But my favorite director isn't the ones that you list. That would be Hong Sang Soo. I just love his simplicity style so much.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Park Chan Wood is a master of visual. Whenever I come to his movies I expected to be blown-away by his visual. He can write compelling characters (he loves his characters) as well but his screenplays in general are weak. You can watch his lesser effort "I'm a Cyborg, but That's Okay" and see many things that made him good/bad. That's the movie I feel he made without the care of the critic
afgm
.
afgm
@koff: Yeah I can help. But midterms/finals are coming up so I can't dedicate to much time.
Kaiser Eoghan
I always felt Bong-jong and Chang-dong , kim-di-duk and Kim-jee-woon were better than Park-chan-wook. Oldboy did have that one hell of an ending, so did lady vengeance but I feel that those are the bits people tend to remember and the rest was good but not great.
Topgavin
For anyone that doesn't regularly browse /r/anime, Godzilla is apparently getting an anime adaption by Polygon Pictures with Urobuchi involved. Should be good.
K-Off
Well, I climbed to rank 52 in Overwatch with Tracer alone. Looking forward to season 2 already, but I do wish Blizzard had somehow implemented a single-player storyline since the lore in Blizzard titles is always so vast. Kind of surprised they didn't make one with Overwatch.
K-Off
@Kaiser Watch Train to Busan if you can. Me neither, I can't dig too deep into Korean films due to the language barrier. Sure would be convenient to have Vincent recommending films again.
K-Off
@afgm Hey, are you still interested in helping out with the site? At this point I'm looking over the site's code & doing some rewriting - if you think you can help, let me know.
K-Off
@Mario I hadn't watched Old Boy for 6 years when I got to I Saw the Devil and it was out of mind for me, so you may be right.
SuperMario
@K-Off: maybe it was just me but I was underwhelmed by I Saw the Devil. The point it trying to match was similar to OldBoy, and Oldboy's execution was way better (OldBoy's one of my favorite movie). Yes, the soundtracks of OldBoy, Lady Vengeance are exceptional. I still listen to The Last Waltz after all those years...
K-Off
The soundtrack in a lot of these Korean films are top notch as well, Lady Vengeance and I Saw the Devil in particular.
K-Off
@Mario Speaking of which, Korean psychological thrillers are hands down some of the best in the last 10-20 years. I Saw the Devil, Lady Vengeance, Old Boy, list goes on.
SuperMario
@Aidan: It just comes to me that we're already half way of this season... Time sure flies
SuperMario
@Kaiser: so please finish up Inside Mari. The last chapter had been out. I need someone to talk about that goddamn manga anw
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I always consider the Korean New Wave started back in 2000, and really peaked in 2003 (OldBoy, Memories of Murders, Spring Summer..., A Tale of 2 Sisters). Before 2000? The only director I can think of was Im Kwon-Taek
AidanAK47
About nearly finished Fata Morgana but I might have to finish doom first because that thing is eating a huge chunk of my SSD drive.
AidanAK47
Back up to date...at least for now. I have to go to a wedding so It's likely I will fall behind again. Got to admit that I haven't had much of an opinion on the latest episodes. Might be just mentally drained personally.
SuperMario
@K-off: I totally agree with you. 28 Days Later is a gem. Though I'm not really into zombie genre as a whole, I'm more into psychological stuffs more.
Total users: 28

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