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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AidanAK47
I have played all the big roguelikes and found they have the same problem. I argee on procedural generation. Even if the map is different every time you are essentailly going through the same rooms and doing the same things.
Masky
Though to be honest, I don't like procedural(or designed room and then game connects them randomly) games much. I much enjoy hand designed dungeons since I rarely play games through more than once anyway so roguelike's appeal of "Every time you play it through its different!" doesn't appeal to me much and hand designed dungeons are much more memorable
Masky
Can't really comment further on that since I don't know which roguelikes you have played, and neither I have played gungeon so I don't know if its badly designed to the point you can't do anything if rng says so. Though I guess there is nothing wrong about liking luck based games, if roguelike in question is truly unbeatable if rng says so, well, its really badly designed one if you ask me.
AidanAK47
Take my last run. Made it up to the fourth floor. Got plenty of guns but none were really useful. Even then ran out of ammo for all of them and the game was cheap about giving out ammo. Plenty of money but shops with nothing worth buying. Over 5 heart containers but no goddamn health. Died on the boss because I rolled out of a bullet into another bullet. Pretty much unavoidable.
AidanAK47
@Masky, that's the theory but in pretty much every roguelike I played its not the case. If the RNG decides you are going to have a bad time then you are going to have a bad time. Skill can only bring you so far. I have played this game for 7 hours and I know I could have finished it in 2. Only thing stopping me is a dice roll.
Masky
Like, the thing with roguelikes is that they can get easier/harder depending on luck, but well done one should be completable even without any upgrades at all if you are skilled enough.
Masky
Thats not the really case with roguelikes though, unless game design is bad and includes insta kill traps and such that are unavoidable if you are unlucky
AidanAK47
I hate roguelikes. Been playing enter the Gungeon and I just lost all patience with it. Getting real tired of my victory being decided by a RNG. It never feels satisfying to finish a roguelike because I know my victory was determined by pure luck.
AidanAK47
So we got to rely on fansubs for it when it's airing.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Nope. I think because netflix only puts up full seasons they are only planning to put it up when it's finished airing. Or when it's dubbed.
SuperMario
But how does the Netflix thing work? So of I have a Netflix account I can watch the show weekly?
SuperMario
@Aidan: that's a dumb way to do things really because unless you watch the show weekly, everyone gonna forget that it even exist. Just look at Re-Life last year
Lenlo
thought*. Words are hard.

Eventually found the actual first ep though and enjoyed it.
Lenlo
Was funny. I tried to find the first Ep for Little Witch, found original short made afew years ago, watched it and though "This is very similar to the original... Whats new".
AidanAK47
Little witch is one of the best shows this season and yet I can't get subtitles because Netflix doesn't release shows weekly. Motherf*cker.
Lenlo
Ore Monogatari I enjoyed. It was a nice romance that actually explored what happens after the confession. Also the 2 leads are just precious.
Lenlo
Alright but unmemorable seems like a good summation.
SuperMario
@Lenlo: one good thing about Seiren is if you don't like this romance, the whole thing gonna reset after episode 4 so there's a chance that you might end up like it. Agreed that the comedy wasn't very good. Alright but unmemorable
SuperMario
@Topgavin: I watched like first 3 episodes and stopped because I didn't have much time there, but I enjoyed what I saw. A well-written and endearing show in my book
Topgavin
Has anyone here watched Ore Monogatari before? Because in the 4 years I've watched anime, I've never heard of it (I guess it did come out 2 years ago) and yet it's turning out to be one of my favorite shows. Always great going into a show expecting nothing and getting pleasantly surprised.
AidanAK47
Only one more impression to go. Should have it up tomorrow.
Lenlo
Im really not feeling Seiren. Its "comedy" isnt for me and I just dont find it very enjoyable to watch so far. Im curious if it gets any better but 2 episodes in it just isnt that good.
HelghastKillzone
That ending scene is an entire side-story compressed into that. Don't expect anymore of it from here on out as the it sticks to ruthless military/fantasy pretty well.
LookingForKeys
@Topgavin I think it was good, making it the second episode. That way the first set up the world the story will be in, and showed how much of a monster the "little girl" really is right at the end, and then made ep.2 the explanation. Nothing against Tanya trying to rip "God" a new one.
That after-credits scene, though...
SuperMario
Hmm, as much as I like Seiren's omnibus format, it doesn't turn out really hot this second episode. Demi-chan, on the other hand, still maintains its endearing tone. Might blogging Demi-chan instead
Topgavin
Yeah, that second episode was much better than the first. Dunno why they didn't start with that to be honest, waste of an opportunity for a good hook episode. The voice for the main girl still sounds weird to me though; I get it's supposed to sound weird because it symbolizes 'her' being out of place and her personality and body being a mismatch, but it'll certainly take some getting used to.
AidanAK47
Youjo Senki, now we are talking. Like Helghast said, Did the god scene way better than the LN and manga. Made it less comedic and more intimidating.
Lenlo
Oh man that Rakugo intro. Not sure what to think, but first time seeing it I liked it
Kaiser Eoghan
I sort of like good will hunting because I kind of saw a bit of myself in Damon's character when I watched it ages ago.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Remaking psycho and ruining the shower scene, for shame van sant, for shame.
Kaiser Eoghan
Its easy to ripoff some obscure thing though and get away with it. The dogtooth director essentially stole an old Mexican film to make that.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: yeah, that following some guys from behind like they were on a RPG games, which I think actually fit with the tones of Elephant. I have such mixed feeling with Gus van Sant too. Don't really think he's a great director.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Although Istvan Szabo is probably a little more well known for that Mephisto film that updates the Faust story. Zoltan Fabri's the fifth seal is a very thought provoking war movie.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I remember seeing a film documentary that featured Gus van sant in one section, they showed clips of tarrs films, Sant ripped of the cinematography and stole the style from some British short film to make Elephant.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: agree on the other Hungarian filmmakers, I don't know much about them either.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Scorsese's Silence was a big comeback. I really really emotionally connect with spiritual crisis stories.
SuperMario
@kaiser: yep, definitely check wreckmeister down. Althought I admit that watching his 2-hour plus films will feel like 5-hour anyways
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I'm more tolerant of darker teenage/coming of age films/stories. Les Demons was a big surprise.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Though its kind of frustrating, I do think Tarr probably takes attention away from other hungarian filmakers because no-body knows who the hell the others are.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Man, wreckmeister was so visually arresting I started getting dreams from it.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I would consider Tarr to be kind of a poor mans Janco, Angelopolus and Tarkvosky rolled into one. I don't entirely "get" wreckmeister and man from London but they are great atmospheric mood piece experiences.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I had been wanting to watch Belar Tarr's Turin Horse and Werckmeister Harmonies for so long now. Well, Fat Girl is shocking haha, but I'm normally drawn into those kind of films anyway.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Margaret took like 5,6 years to release because he couldn't cut it down in the way he wanted. The final cut if I remembered correctly was edited by Martin Scorsese
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Only a HDcam for moonlight now.
Kaiser Eoghan
I looks like my lineup is witch academia, rakugo and youjo senki, well the most latter one until I get bored.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I sense a directors cut for manchester, it feels like it need another 30 minutes.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: right up my valley. Watch Kenneth Lonergan's previous works Magaret and You Can Count on Me. Magaret is very messy but have a raw dialogue and interactions as well
SuperMario
Now the first episodes are over, I will keep on covering 3-gatsu, as for the other twos atm I have 3 options: 1) full romance/anti-romance high school Seiren/Scum's Wish. 2) slice-of-life moe monster girls Demi-chan/Maid Dragon and 3) Mature,dark Onihen/Acca (which although I like them I don't have much to talk about).If you guys have any preference on which shows you like covered then let me know
Kaiser Eoghan
@Helghast: At this point I'm watching youjo senki as an entertaining guilty pleasure.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Too many reboots upcoming, will wait for the dvds instead. I want to explore more of manchester by the sea's director's work. I also want to finally get more into Bela Tarr's stuff.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I was rather shocked by A Ma souer/fat girls final act. Scenes with the Italian in the bedroom were initially creepy.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: it's a nice review Kaiser, a bit jealous with you that you've seen those 3 films which are touted as the best films of 2016. Also Fat Girl, haha, I love that movie.
Kaiser Eoghan
Poor yotaro =< you have so much stuff going down on you =<
HelghastKillzone
Youjo Senki episode was so good today. That revamped scene with God just fitted so right.
AidanAK47
A official release of that game in the west is apparently coming but it's been a few years and not much news about it.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: Ah yes that was the one.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, Had to think for a moment on that one but I think I was talking about this. https://vndb.org/v3144
Kaiser Eoghan
Now I'd hardly consider myself a studio trigger fan, but I watched the first witch academia episode there, it was actually kind of fun, got the same reaction from me as flipflappers did, that magical, special feeling.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I also, of interest reviewed Kenneth Lonegrans new film: http://letterboxd.com/shao_liu_ringon/film/manchester-by-the-sea/
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Moonlight got some feels out of me though it could of been more, it ends abruptly and with 20 extra minutes they could have spent a bit more time on each section of his life.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I checked out lala land, ending was very well executed, one of three scenes in the film that were impressive visually. The whole thing looked pretty and Gosling and Stone had some decent chemistry. Although it didn't resonate emotionally as strongly as the musicals of Jacques Demi did.
Kaiser Eoghan
MOM I want aiyoku no eustia and I want it now.
Kaiser Eoghan
I've never heard of himawari or tokyo babel. The hellsing comparison at least interests me in dies irae. What was the name of that visual novel again that was coming out soon, Aidan you described it as "And Kaiser would love it because its supposed to be really fucked up".
Kaiser Eoghan
I vaguely remember the anime for 11 eyes, it was very forgettable, even the voice acting was poor, hated the childhood friends and the pacing was poor, those black knight things were kind of interesting though.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: You'll have to add me onto the list of those unsatisfied with the ever 17 writer, I read one of those games and felt it was a bunch of interesting bait that never paid off.
AidanAK47
Anyway I plan on doing a review of 11eyes here when I finish it.
AidanAK47
Can't say I was a fan of Ever17. That was a really good twist but when it came to explaining it their was a lot of contrived development. Generally not a fan of the writer. Looseboy, Ryukishi, Gen and Nasu are more my kinda thing
AidanAK47
@Anon, it is nice that so many VNs are on steam but I wish they wouldn't be stupid with the whole no adult content thing. Not so much for myself but to prevent idiots from writing negitives reviews because the game doesn't have sex. VNs can grip you in a way anime simply can't and while they require pathence and time those can be some pretty powerful stories.
Anonymous678956
@Aidan, I am so happy steam's so VN-friendly now. I think it's a very good type of media. Like anime, it has nice visuals, music and some movement but also the inner monologue and text amount of books. It's the perfect combination. Plus, the routes, which are often puzzle pieces and PoVs you have to go through to understand the whole story. True routes like the one of Ever17 blew my mind.
AidanAK47
Hopefully the two VNs I bought of steam turn out better. Tokyo Babel is supposed to be alright and I heard really good things about Himawari.
AidanAK47
I am about a third of the way through the game and really not much of worth has happened. The concept is interesting but the execution is sorely lacking.
AidanAK47
I went in expecting it to be a mixed bag and it's pretty below my expectations. It's just not really well written and the protagonist is a moron. THere isn't really routes and instead you are pretty much stuck with his childhood friend as the main love interest. Problem with that is her character begins and ends with loving the main.
Anonymous675376
@Aidan, damn. 11Eyes is on my reading list as well. Although I almost expected it to not be as good as I thought it'd be (back then). Guess I would have enjoyed it if I was able to read it while the (shitty) adaption aired, maybe I have seen/read too many series by now. Guess I'll still give it a try some day though.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I haven't heard the OST or watched the intro video. I only know it be reputation and have decided to walk into it as blind as I can. Still slightly worried as I was somewhat looking forward to reading 11Eyes for a couple of years and now that I am reading it it's well...not good.
Anonymous675376
@Aidan, same here. I was waiting years for this, since I saw the intro video for the first time. Also, that OST!
HelghastKillzone
Youjo Senki is already leagues better than Izetta. It's going to be top anime of forever and ever. (maybe not)
AidanAK47
And finally Dies Irae is funded. May actually be able to play and finish the game before the anime airs. If the hype is real behind this baby it could be a new personal favorite Visual Novel of mine. Already looking promising with it being like a cross between Hellsing and Fate/Stay Night. Two things I most certainly like.
Lenlo
@Masky, in regards to style over substance thats where im at with Gurrne Lagann.
Topgavin
Yeah, I'll probably watch the next episode to see whether it can redeem itself. Hopefully it can but considering 1st episodes usually get a lot of budget, there's some severe doubt in there.
AidanAK47
I actually argee with character designs and voices are bad in regards to female characters. Still the next episode might change your mind if we get more into the main characters head.
Anonymous671470
It's boring
Topgavin
Also, it seems I disagree with a lot of people in thinking Youjo Senki will be a massive trainwreck. The character designs are awful, the voice acting is mismatched but most of all the premise just seems so very dumb. If I wanted to watch a badass kill people I'd go watch Hellsing or Drifters, because at least those don't have some op, disproportionate loli as the mc.
AidanAK47
Gets even more complicated when you account for Satire and Parody. You could equally argue all examples listed as being as such.
AidanAK47
Little Witch Academia is a decontruction of Harry Potter....I don't believe that but honestly if I tried I could put some reasoning behind that statement.
Topgavin
In the end, it always comes down to opinion (as with every discussion about anime, for some reason). You could spin any and every series as a "deconstruction", which is why people shy away from using the word. You could argue NGE, Madoka and Re:Zero are all deconstructions yet also argue Gundam, Precure and SAO are depending on what points you weigh more importantly.
Masky
Like, if deconstruction is supposed to be just "break the elements and then play story how it would realistically go down" well I haven't watched NGE, but as far as I know it does have stuff that isn't typical to mecha genre besides the "It would fuck up kids" thing plus "realistically how it would play out" is pretty subjective thing. I mean, its mainly about how cynical bastard the writer is :P
Masky
Like I said, I don't fully agree with it because I find video's speaker's attitude annoying, but I found it semi convincing. Main thing I don't find convincing about it is that I don't think its hard to turn video's own arguments agaisnt it and say that by its own logic NGE isn't deconstruction either, like Aidan just said earlier
Masky
And I don't really have energy for checking out the "correct" one. If there even is one. Anyway, the hipster video I was talking about was titled "What Actually Is A Deconstruction?" if you want to check it out.
Masky
Hmm, well, it does depend on definition you use. Like if you use "realistic" thing, well, Magical Girl shows don't usually have "You turn into monsters" thing going on and reason why NGE's pilots go crazy is from dangerous situations rather than evas making them do so. But honestly, I don't really have strong opinion on matter since word seems to be one of those with several different meaning
SuperMario
for me Madoka IS a deconstruction of Magical girl, and yeah like what Aidan said
SuperMario
I think part of Utena is a deconstruction of "prince riding horse and save the girl" because that notion is just a foundation for Utena to become a prince herself and save other girl. That's breaking it apart and resemble it again in its own way. Don't have to be dark/ don't have to be real either
AidanAK47
@Masky, That's just debating semantics. Besides that difinition would pretty much mean that Neon Genesis Evangelion isn't a decontruction either. Madoka isn't a decontruction because it's dark. It's more in its aspects of criticising why a girl should throw her ordinary life away for something as dangerous as being a magical girl. It does take plenty of the typical tropes and turn them on its head
SuperMario
@Masky: Genre deconstruction is such a tricky word that I normally try to avoid using because there's really no set characteristic about the term and different people have different opinions about what constitute "deconstruction". For me, I disagree that deconstruction have to be dark and real, hmm can't say it well but I will give you an example:
Masky
But yeah, I guess I could try to find the video if you guys are interested, though like I said, I got hipsterish feel from the video and felt rather annoyed through it even though I did get what the point was and found it sort of convincing besides my annoyance
Masky
(not that liking NGE is hipsterish, its just that I find NGE to be more style than substance sort of series <_< Anyway, guy didn't dislike madoka or anything, he just seemed to dislike people using word deconstruction wrong in his opinion)
Masky
(especially with how much they seemed to praise Neon Genesis Evangelion)
Masky
I mean, I think the guy was being somewhat hipsterish, but its true the being darker take on genre isn't same as deconstructing the genre
Masky
@AidanAK47: Some other guy on youtube did video that had actually pretty good point about how Madoka isn't really deconstruction, if you go by definition of "Break it down to parts and then play them straight to show how horrifying it would be in real life"
Anonymous670441
Gente - Ristorante no Hitobito
Kaiser Eoghan
If anything its the hate I have for certain characters that makes it more effective.
Kaiser Eoghan
The obsessional level of attachment is just uncomfortable to me, I don't want to get THAT attached to a non-real character.
Kaiser Eoghan
Its literally just a case of "Okay lets look at this picture of this character, she looks interesting, no feelings or expression from me, apply this fetish, fap, get release, go home. "
Kaiser Eoghan
Or drooling/dribbling/heavy breathing/grinning over the characters. I abhor alot of the anime girls I find attractive or am indifferent, even when looking at ecchi/hentai drawings I'm straight and clinical with it.
Kaiser Eoghan
I mean to each their own. But I really hate the level of emotion/devotion to moe/finding the characters attractive. Such as celebrating their birthdays, going on about how cute/hot they are, how important it is that they're virgins. Or not being being self-aware of how irritating the characters are.
Lenlo
Anime hipster is pretty accurate. His general treatment of the current state of anime is annoying, as is his obsession with moe. Maybe its cause I cant stand moe most of the time, but it bugs me.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Lenlo: Essentially my brothers view on digibro.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: I don't usually feel the need to correct errors in your reviews as the errors are generally un-important, but I think you meant to say apprentices rather than appearences in the Rakugo review, just bringing that up as it felt like kind of a throw off.
AidanAK47
Which is kinda like saying Madoka wasn't a magical girl deconstruction because Sailor Moon and Nanoha had dark elements too.
AidanAK47
Went and read the reddit comments on it and seems I was right on the money.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, He's basically a anime hipster. For example, I saw a thumbnail of his which had Saitama on it and below it "Is There Meaning In "Subverting" Shounen Tropes?" and I thought "Okay, he's going to go on about how OPM isn't subversive and then list a bunch of arbitrary examples in an attempt to redefine what is actually subversive"
Lenlo
I have lots of issues with Digibro. Dude has some good points, but other very horrible ones. Some issues he feels strongly about and gets kinda biased on imo.
Anonymous669202
acca looks visually interesting, and I personally really dig this kind of show, but it seems that it's definitely not for everyone
AidanAK47
Time to live up to my word. Four posts incoming.
AidanAK47
Man, Little witch Academia was so good. I disagree with the whole Digibro thing about being able to recognise a great show in it's first episode but watching this makes me think that this really is going to be something special.
AidanAK47
Alright, gonna put in effort today and have 3 or 4 first impressions posts done. That should knock out near half the season.
Kaiser Eoghan
Had a flip through handshakers. Garish is the word I'd use to describe it visually, it takes you out of the show.
Topgavin
ASuperMario From the first minute I can already tell it's by the same people that made K. Those colour filters and the extremely jarring/obvious city CGI is unmistakable.
SuperMario
Hand Shakers, literally makes my hands shaking. It's an abosolute mess. Highly recommended to check it out because it's so terrible it's great to watch
Vonter212
Yeah, and it's also a literal woman in refrigerator plot device, since that the thing that pushes the story forward.
Masky
I'd say that having to hide your sister's body in fridge would count as daaaaaaark and edgy, but when the body is wearing only underwear, and for some reason main character put metal things in fridge to keep body standing(I guess to not knock fridge open from inside?) I think it goes to "exploitation" you are talking about
Vonter212
@Masky - Did someone said doing dark things for drama? That's the bread and butter to get despair. Unless it's for the sake of perversion. Then it's just exploitation.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Masky: His other works dead tube and scumbag go further in the unhinged regard.
Masky
*relies on easy "let's do [x dark thing] for drama!" thing
Masky
Geez, Mayonaka no X Giten is fricking disturbing/disgusting ._. I'm pretty sure that writing relies on e, but I can't help but think mangaka is trying to make corpses sexy.
SuperMario
I found Onihei to be quite good, actually one of the most solid new episode I watched this new season. Guys, check them out
Vonter
I just hope it doesn't fall into the same misstep Kabaneri or Inuyasha or Bleach fall by making a villain so over the top that it crossed the line of not having a satisfying downfall.
Anonymous657941
@Vonter I think they just moved on. I lost interest rather quickly and I guess even the fans did that at some point, like with some other long-running series. There is much more new and more direct "fujo" stuff out there, many of them probably switched. Don't know what happens in the manga but maybe the story got worse or contained things some people didn't like.
Vonter
January will be loli dictator month (for me) :p. World Conquest Zvezda Plot, Youjo Senki: Saga of Tanya the Evil (new), Seraph of the End. For some reason I stumble into three curious series with little power hungry girls. If I can ask, why did Owari Seraph's hype died, I remember back it was mentioned more often. It still has the fujoshi fanart but still, I don't see people bringing it up.
SuperMario
@CATski: well, if you didn't like its first 3 episodes I dont think the rest gonna change your mind. Have you finished Erased then? How did you like it?
SuperMario
But I understand it's difficult to speak in front of camera, get some time to get used to it
SuperMario
@kaiser: I won't commend on poem as I'm terrible at it myself but younneed to work more on presentation Kaiser. Small little things like looking directly at the camera or say "thanks for listening" in the end can connect you to the audience better
Anonymous657071
Ok. I'll give the thing another chance. *clicks torrent* XD. CATski.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Topgavin: You might like centaur no nanami if you like demi-chan.
Kaiser Eoghan
Damn...repeated myself =<
Kaiser Eoghan
There are these things called slam sessions done in bars where people get up and read out stuff in front of a crowd and read stuff out. Actually watching rakugo made me think about practicing for that kind of thing.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: the video I did was of me reading out a short piece of writing I did, a poem. lol I uploaded it to the wrong youtube account too I just realized =P
[link src="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ypBZ2hBDBYs&t=11s
I"] was recording this from my mothers laptops inbuilt cam while reading off my desktop.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I think it's a good idea for you to try out reviewing movies/stuffs in youtube channel. I'll be very interesting to listen to them
SuperMario
@Topgavin: Agree. Demi-chan was so charming. Definately one of my favorite so far this new season
Topgavin
Demi-chan's first episode was good. Like, really really good. That blonde-haired girl was hilarious, the teacher-student relationship between the MC and the girls is really interesting and the social/practical problems the demi's face make it look like my favorite show so far.
CATski
Ah... ok. Is it really that good or it's just one of those "artsy" animes that tend to get overrated by their ardent fans? I didnt find the rakugo bit interesting.... probably the weakest aspect of the show for me.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: Why did I read that chapter. Why did I do that to myself.
Kaiser Eoghan
Admittedly yes the premise is not for everyone, but if you stick with it, the flashback arc had some good character work in there.
CATski
Rakugo has a season 2? I watched ep 1 - 3 of season 1 then promptly deleted it. The loud "yankee" dude was annoying. And the anime was boring.
Kaiser Eoghan
Oh man, I've been thinking lately of trying to start some kind of youtube channel. I did a few trial run videos. Its much much harder than it looks, didn't realize how nervy being in front of a video camera was.
Kaiser Eoghan
*a declining art and rakygo halls are closing down
Kaiser Eoghan
As the show continues to mention how "its declining art", that got me thinking of the modern day, how while things like tv and cinemas probably hurt attendances for rakugo performances, the internet has replaced theaters .
Kaiser Eoghan
Ah, now I've watched it. It'll be interesting to see Yotaro's relation to sukeroku's daughter develop. By all intents he should be an irritating character and not as interesting a yakumo based on his personality, but I can't help but like him, example of a goofball character done right.
Anonymous654016
ElDlive is looking good
Kaiser Eoghan
I haven't gotten around to rakugo's second seasons first episode yet =<
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