Posted by psgels on 2 January 2012 with categories: Anime Reviews

Okay, I know. I’ve been keeping up with this blog for quite a few years now. And only now was the first time I witnessed a work of the living genius Naoki Urusawa. I figured that before watching Monster, I’d check out another adaptation of his: Master Keaton. It consists out of a television-series and a 15-episode sequel OVA (this review covers just the former, a review of the latter will come up soon). And here is the thing: out of all of Naoki Urusawa’s works, you hear the most raves about Monster, 20th Century Boys and Pluto. Master Keaton is completely overshadowed by them. I cannot imagine how good these series could be when they overshadow a brilliant series like this.

These past 24 episodes told me enough: whoever wrote this did a ton of background research. This is a completely episodic series about a guy named Taishou Keaton. This guy is a former member of the SAS, studied archeology and works as an insurance advisor. And at all of these, he is very knowledgeable. This anime convinced me that he indeed is.

Professionalism is a big theme of quite a few of the episodes in this series. The thing with writing very smart people is that they’re much harder to write than stupid people. This anime manages to perfectly portray how much knowledge Keaton has about his area of interests, and the action related episodes turn into really good battles of wit because of this, because most of the people that Keaton goes up against are visible professionals too. Once in a while this show also takes detours into other fields of study, for example in a very excellent episode about wine-making. Those too succeed in portraying craftsmen.

The episodes of Master Keaton can be divided into two broad categories: thrillers and heartwarming stories. The thrillers rock because the abovementioned professionalism, not to mention the wide variety of people that Keaton faces as an insurance investigator who sometimes gets to play for detective. The heartwarming stories also really succeed in what they set out to do due to very good characterization, and playful storytelling that toys nicely with all sorts of twists.

The beauty of Master Keaton is that every single story is just one episode long, and yet every episode is interesting and delivers. I did not see one weak moment, and a lot of the people that Keaton meets feel very much like real people. My one criticism is that there are too many “generic thugs” tropes walking around in this series, although it does subvert a few of those when you don’t expect it.

Storytelling: 9/10 – Intelligent, well paced, especially considering how this show consistently is able to tell interesting stories that are just 20 minutes long.
Characters: 8/10 – Keaton is very well acted and portrayed as a genius, the people he meets feel real, although the set-up leaves little room for actual character-development.
Production-Values: 8/10 – The animation is nothing special, although the character designs are very good and the soundtrack is nice as well.
Setting: 10/10 – Very well researched and very authentic. Top-notch in how it describes various European cities, and all sorts of fields.

Suggestions:
Mushishi
Mouryou no Hako
Darker than Black

19 Responses

  1. Juno says:

    Yup. You are going to love Urusawa-sensei. This is exactly what he’s good at. I might say, though, that it is only overseas that this series isn’t as well-known as his other series–likely because of publishing and distributing on the part of the ones marketing/advertising the series.
    When I was in Japan, I heard about as much of this as I did of 20th-Century Boys and I heard even less of Monster and Pluto (I didn’t read them until I got back to America). I only wish I could give you a reason that it wasn’t marketed well here… It’s just as good as his other series. Probably not enough “action” for this side of the world, though… that’s just my assumption. =P

  2. joojoobees says:

    I’m glad you reminded me of this series. I am one of the first to complain about there not being enough adults playing real roles in anime, and how great it is when we get to see people doing the work of professions (other than cop, spy, and giant robot pilot). So why haven’t I finished this series? I started it some time in the past, and experienced some sort of computer disaster (I don’t even remember which one any more). One thing led to another, and I forgot all about this show. Definitely something to go on my “things to do in 2012” list!

  3. CJ says:

    Glad you like Master Keaton! The OVA is basically more of the same, of course when it’s this good is that really a problem? I know it says “OVA”, but it seems more like a “Back by popular demand, here are more Keaton eps!”
    Sadly for me, the manga will likely never come over here due to some legal disputes between Urasawa and Katsushika, I’m just happy I got the anime for cheap before disc 5 became like, $50+ to obtain. Geneon didn’t even distinguish between the TV and OVA, there really isn’t any point in doing so. But being a big manga person, this is kinda a letdown for me, you just know 18 volumes resulted in more than 38 stories.

  4. Keira says:

    Yes, the point is, Naoki Urosawa is an expert in building very realistic characters and doing insane amount of background research. You would sure to love it, it’s visible in his other work as well.

  5. gan says:

    I was thinking of looking up to Master Keaton now that I have finished 20th Century Boys,this review was quite helpful ^_^
    If you’re seeing Monster next,I have to keep my fingers crossed about your review.Monster is excellent without doubt,but one flaw which I found about Urasawa’s works is that they drag out really long.I realized this after I read 20th C.B. The thriller/suspense is excellent at first but then you get used to it.However it is still very well done.
    Since Master Keaton is an episodic series,I feel each story still remains fresh.
    Well let’s wait for your other review ;)

  6. Chiarissimo says:

    You should know : Naoki Urasawa has only done the art for the Master Keaton manga, and contributed very little to the storyline, despite what he may have said (I don’t see why he would have shut up about him being the scenarist of his manga…)

    The big problem with Naoki Urasawa is that he is way too politically correct, this can be seen in his Pluto manga, in which he completely misses the point about what Osamu Tezuka really intended to do with his work, and his Billy Bat series, which is most probably the blandest and most odourless thing he has created.

    His 20th Century Boys manga is amazing in its first 12 volumes or so, and then it turns into an utter mess. He gets lost in his own tracks and hints, he pulls bullshit after bullshit plot developments out of his ass and it concludes in the most mundane and corny way imaginable.

    Really his only real consistently good work is Monster, which has to be one of the best anime and manga out there. A lot people also complained about the ending, which I thought was satisfying enough and its lack of impact is more than justified by the sober nature of the series.

    Anyways, just so you know. There’s some seriously overrated crap in the manganime industry, such as the Gundam franchise and Naoki Urasawa.

    • gurdlo says:

      T thought 20th Century Boys was fantastic, but it did have some rather ridiculous plot-twists. As for Pluto, he missed the point of Tezuka’s work, but that shouldn’t matter at all to someone who hasn’t read it, forgoing it’s ties to it’s source material, it’s stil a solid read.

  7. ojisan says:

    I actually came at Master Keaton from the other end – as a fan of Yawara. Yawara has a lot of charm and a lot of repetitious tournament-style tropes. You can see him get the hang of the ‘professionalism’ thing, write himself into and out of corners, and learn his chops. Chiarissimo may be right about how much (or little) he contributed to Master Keaton, yet I see a lot of Yawara in Master Keaton beside the odd character designs, so I think there’s a lot of Urasawa in there too.

    I still consider Master Keaton to be a guilty pleasure – it’s wonderful, but a bit too squeaky-clean somehow. I like it best when, as in Monster, he shows how political history shapes personal destiny.

  8. someloser says:

    great! from the sound of it, you’re really going to enjoy monster if you find yourself pleased with this already. sad thing is it seems monster is the only series that is out in anime form, while pluto and 20th century can only be read. (though there is a live action of 20th i think…) good news though is that monster follows exactly with the original manga, almost image by image, so almost nothing is altered, totally worth the 74 episodes.

  9. Guigas says:

    I watched/read all Urasawa works and i still think Monster is the best of them all followed by 20th CB. Yup, Urasawa is a genius, my favorite mangaka right now, and considering I already read tons of mangas, that means something.

    “These past 24 episodes told me enough: whoever wrote this did a ton of background research”
    No doubts you’ll love Monster. It is highly realistic and detailed, with even more background research than Master Keaton. You can see the building of the towns matching reality, the distinct culinary of each region of Germany, etc.

    • Chiarissimo says:

      And every Turkish man with the same face and mustache… :P

      • Guigas says:

        Hahaha, that’s also true :D

        In fact the character design of all Urasawa works are too much alike.
        Dr. Tenma(Monster) has the same appearance of Mr. Keaton (Master Keaton), and Epsilon (Pluto) has the same appearance of Johan (Monster). I guess Urasawa is lazy when it comes about thinking about new character desings :P

    • Animeguilol says:

      “with even more background research than Master Keaton.”
      You should read the manga of Keaton before saying that.

  10. K.K. says:

    Monster was fantastic, I can’t wait to see your review of it. It’s too bad that it was so long though, since it puts off a lot of people from watching it, but I still try to recommend it to any anime fan that will listen.

  11. zewho says:

    Chiarissimo, you may think Naoki Urasawa is overrated, but when I think of how great his villains are, from my perspective, I can’t help but disagree with you.

    Johan is my favorite even though he is inspired by one of Osamu Tezuka’s characters from “MW” or so I’ve been told. It is figuring out what Johan’s true mentality, feelings, consideration, and perception of others might be that he hides so well that makes this show such a great mental challenge to think about.

    The mood, suspense, and atmosphere in “Monster” is so thick you can cut it with a knife. (I kind of think of it as an Alfred Hitchcock, Edgar Allen Poe, or almost an “Adams Family” kind of morbidity that’s lurking in it). So, if dark or depressing isn’t desired by the viewer, avoid “Monster” because at points I thought it was even more depressing than a majority of anime I’ve seen, including “Bokura no.”

    “Monster” is not really to be taken as lightly as “Master Keaton” just as a forewarning, Psgels. Seriously, it should come with a warning sign that says “WARNING this show is a whopping 74 episode slithering beast.” Wait, nevermind, the very first episode does start off with a very creepy passage. I feel this is what makes Naoki Urasawa almost like a mad genius to so many people. There’s a parody fan art that I could post that would sum everything up very nicely. It’s the one where Johan has sprouted Kyuubey’s ears.

  12. Chiarissimo says:

    Go reread what I’ve said.
    Monster is indeed great, and I agree with everything you just said about it and then some; I’m talking about the rest of what he’s done, which is really pretentious in terms of its real quality compared to its ambition and self-sufficiency. I’m not afraid to say that the last 10 volumes of 20th Century Boys (and all of 21st) is a steaming pile of shit; I wouldn’t go as far with Pluto and Billy Bat because they don’t deserve to be called that, considering how inexistant they are.

    • zewho says:

      I definitely read what you said. I’ve read a lot of what critics have said, too, and they can make some very good points. But pardon me if I’m being way too hopeful. I simply want there to be a 95+/100 score on this site, and I seriously believe “Monster” could be it. I’m not 100% positive that it will reach that score, but I’m fairly positive. I will simply shut up and wait and see. I don’t really care if you think “20th Century Boys” deserves a 10/100 score, either.

      As for whether that manga is a masterpiece worthy of being toted as the number one manga of all time I don’t know. I believe you and others have the right to be very skeptical of that claim. I still feel, however, that Urasawa is not overrated in many aspects i.e., his villains are really awesome.

      As for the whole politically correct issue, I wish I could comment on that criticism, but I’m not sure I can yet. I suspect that such a thing may not bother me very much in the same way Tenma’s pacifism did not bother me. I could be wrong, who knows? I’m definitely not not a sharp professional critic here.

    • Guigas says:

      @ Chiarissimo

      I only agree that the ending of 20th CB (last volume) and all of 21st are disappointing. I wouldn’t go as far as you did and say that the last 10 volumes are bullshit… but hey, everybody has it’s own opinion, I guess you have your reasons for thinking like that and I respect that.

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Kaiser Eoghan
Think of the fine children/breeding stock Aidan and rem would offspring =P
Kaiser Eoghan
Dye their hair, make things confusing ;)
AidanAK47
@Anon, hahahaha, cool joke bro.....
...............................Don't make me destroy you.
Lenlo
The one with red hair of course
Anonymous765953
rem? who's that?
Lenlo
Having read the books, theres afew inconsistencies and I dont like some of the choices for actors.
Kaiser Eoghan
*couldn't
Kaiser Eoghan
Buh buh but Aiiiidan you still have the koe no katachi movie and thaaats kyoani =P But lol phantom world was so poor I couldn't get past the second episode. A shame that they could go with the darker spin the author ended up apparently going for in later volumes.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, I am currently eh on it as well. Only at the second episode so far. I find it interesting but it has a lot of things that turn me off.
Lenlo
7 YEARS I SAT ON THAT BOAT!

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

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