Posted on 30 April 2012 with categories: Phi Brain

You know, the actual goal of the orpheus order isnt’ bad at all. If they can figure out the kinks in the Orpheus bracelet and remove the parts that destroy the wearer’s brains, it could mean a very good way for humanity to evolve, and it’s certainly better than “let’s have humanity evolve by killing everyone.” It’s just that their methods are questionable, having them resort to use involuntary human guinea pigs who can easily die when things go wrong.

Also, this episode broke up the formula that the first episodes tried to set already: Gammon prevented his sister from getting brainwashed. Still, you could say that this all was part of the plans in order to challenge Kaito to a puzzle. This episode pretty much failed for the Orpheus order, because the reason why Kaito nearly became “Phi Brain” was by putting him under constant stress. That’s very hard to do with five of them together like that, supporting each other. Also, this episode revealed all of their names, and they are indeed as weird as the rest of the cast. The main villain of this series is a random card game.

In any case, the bad thing of breaking up this formula is that we didn’t really get to see much more about Gammon’s sister. The most logical solution for this will be that the Orpheus order will find some other way to use her. Can they keep these methods fresh enough for the entire side-cast?
Rating: * (Good)

Posted on with categories: Hyouka

My big issue with Kyoani is their lack of ambition. They’ve got some amazing animators in house. The could bring the most amazing stories to life with that. But no, we need the random antics of high school girls! In particular it’s the series Lucky Star, K-On and Nichijou which all failed to capture my interest. worst of all was Lucky Star, which I actually finished in the hopes of finding out why people were so lyrical about it. I didn’t figure it out. And it was a chore. Hyouka features high school students talking to each other a lot, but finally it’s actually going somewhere. The characters aren’t randomly yapping about the same things over and over: there is progression. That’s what caught my interest for this series, and I want to see where it’s going.

Which brings me to another quirk of Kyoani: taking really long to build up and set up everything. This is a double-edged sword: if all of the build-up gets to the point of annoyance, then it will have failed its purpose. The trick with these kinds of series is to still have something redeemable when building up. For example I rate Kobato higher than Mirai Nikki because Kobato’s first half, even though it was random and often cheesy, still was very genuine and had interesting characters. Mirai Nikki meanwhile was a drag because there were too many characters who just weren’t. Kyoani’s series try to tackle this problem with realism: having characters act realistic and down to earth. It worked well with Air and Clannad, but Haruhi and Kanon suffered from characters trying too hard to be moe, leading to me dropping both before eventually giving them a chance to properly sit them out and appreciate what they were building up for.

Hyouka is looking good. The premise of this series hasn’t come up yet (that whole another-like premise of a student dying 30 years ago), and instead it’s keeping itself busy with random trivial mysteries. The way it goes to solve these is actually quite interesting: the train of thoughts of the character sin particular is interesting to watch, even when things are as silly as wondering why five different students would borrow the same book for five consecutive weeks.

The animation of this series is also very fluid and dynamic, but it’s especially the few scenes of symbolism each episode where the artists can really show off to make this a feast for the eyes.
Rating: *+ (Great)

Posted on 29 April 2012 with categories: Monthly Summaries

This season is massive! Seriously, do you know when the last time was that I ended up listing 49 or more series during my monthly summaries? October 2006. And back then I didn’t watch raws yet, and I included series from past seasons that hadn’t finished yet, along with a bunch of really old series. This season definitely is something special in terms of all of the series that have come out that are trying something interestingand trying to stand out.

Does that mean that we’ve got one of the best seasons ever? Well, no. There is a lot of mediocrity in this season, not to mention there are too many series of only 13 episodes for it to be really able to rival the major seasons like Spring 2006, Spring 2007 and Autumn 2008. I made the mistake in the past of announcing a season as awesome right at the start (did that to both Summer and Autumn 2011), so I’m not going to do that until this season is finished. But damn: things look good here.

#49 (new) – Sengoku Collection – (2,25/10) – Oda Nobunaga… what have they done to you? Dropped.
#48 (new) – Naruto SD – (2,75/10) – The forced attempts at comedy were horrible to watch. Dropped.
#47 (new) – Pretty Rythm – (3/10) – Even for a kids’ show, this one was bad. It was nothing but one girl whine over and over and over and she would just never shut up. Do kids really enjoy watching those kinds of characters?
#46 (new) – Queens Blade – (3/10) – Completely retarded. Also, boobs. Dropped.
#45 (23) – Hiiro no Kakera – (4,5/10) – I tried giving this a second chance, but bailed out immediately. This is an incredibly generic bishie show that is badly acted and has absolutely nothing that stands out whatsoever. Dropped
#44 (new) – Upotte – (5/10) – Wow. That first episode’s only sense of humour came from having random innuendo jokes about guns. Xebec, I really see that you’ve exerted yourself on this one… Dropped.
#43 (new) – Ginga he Kickoff – (5,75/10) – Very annoying lead character. Dropped.
#42 (new) – Recorder to Randsell – (6,25/10) – The gimmick of this series has worn off for me. It’s nice and all for one episode, but two entire seasons of this. It needs to try harder for me. Having “being a cute premise” as the only redeemable factor is not enough for me to keep watching. Dropped.
#41 (new) – Haiyore Nyaruko-San – (6,4/10) – This show also is a gimmick that’s a bit fun for just one episode, but not much more. Yeah, she is an insult to the works of Lovecraft, let’s have a laugh and then drop this to move on. Dropped.
#40 (20) – Ozuma – (6,6/10) – So in the end, what did Ozuma really do? This month brought in some of the background of this series, but that’s what it was: just background that that one girl read as from a script. It made no impact on the rest of the show whatsoever and could have been omitted without changing anything else about the show.
#39 (new) – Yurumates – (6,9/10) – 2 minutes of random college antics. It didn’t capture my interest. Dropped.
#38 (new) – Kore wa Zombie Desu ka? – (7/10) – I gave up on this show when it tried to recycle its gimmicks from the first season.
#37 (new) – Tasogare Otome X Amnesia – (7/10) – The guys over at Silver Link really need to learn about how to get characters to act properly. This is their umpth show of theirs that might have been interesting, if only it wasn’t so badly acted. Especially the female sidekick who can’t see ghosts was a pain to watch. I’d almost say: drop all the visual effects, and focus on your basics and priorities. Dropped.
#36 (new) – Gon – (7/10) – Another gimmick show: it’s fun to watch for one episode, but after that it dies off. Dropped.
#35 (new) – Accel World – (7,1/10) – Interesting premise, but the execution leaves things to be desired. Annoying main character who doesn’t belong in this series, Wastes too much time with boring exposition, has no interesting characters whatsoever. I see no potential for this one in the long run, unfortunately.
#34 (new) – Acchi Kocchi – (7,25/10) – Acchi Kocchi is… just there, I guess. It’s just a bunch of high schoolers doing random stuff with its annoying and cute moments. I could find nothing that really stood out or made it more than just random fluff, though. Dropped
#33 (new) – Folktales from Japan – (7,4/10) – Random Folk Tales. They were interesting from a cultural point of view, even though they really played on what a bitch Karma tends to be. It’s not interesting enough to continue watching, though. Dropped.
#32 (new) – Jewel Pet – (7,4/10) – Getting the director of Milky Holmes and Lilpri to do Jewel Pet. Whoever found that kind of madness a good idea? The result was a bizarre first episode that was funny as a gimmick, but unsustainable in the long run. Dropped
#31 (new) – Kuromajo-San ga Tooru – (7,5/10) – Cute, but not cute enough for me to spend my time on. Needs to try harder. Dropped
#30 (new) – Shining Hearts – Shiawase no Pan – (7,5/10) – I don’t care if you’ve got an interesting story. If you don’t try to show this off, then how am I supposed to know? This series really needs more ambition. Try to stand out like a lot of the other shows are trying to do, for god’s sake. Dropped.
#29 (new) – Saki Episode of Side A – (7,5/10) – The problem with Saki is that its characters are quite charming, but its mahjong is an insult. With the first two episodes, I saw no hints that this time it’ll be different, so I’m bailing out while I still can. Dropped.
#28 (new) – Arashi no Yoru ni – (7,6/10) – In the end, this series suffers from too much competition. I had to cut out some series, and I have already seen this story and it is overacted.
#27 (17) – Smile Precure – (7,75/10) – In the end I dropped this series. It’s a nice show and all, but this season has way too much competition.
#26 (new) – Kuroko no Basuke – (7,75/10) – This had some fun first episodes, but I see no future in this series as a shounen jump adaptation. There is no potential for the characters to improve, it probably will drag on with random opponents that also have shounen-like powers. I feel like I’ve seen all that’s good about this series in just the first episode. Dropped.
#25 (new) – Medaka Box – (7,75/10) – I can see potential in this series. The writing shows that it knows what it’s doing, but at other times it’s aggravating to watch and how everyone keeps going on about how perfect Medaka is. This is a show where it really stands out that it violates the “show, don’t tell”-principle, and it’s not like I’m often bothered by that.
#24 (new) – AKB0048 – (7,75/10) – The plot just makes no sense whatsoever! It has potential though, because at least the characters are bearable enough to continue past the first episode.
#23 (new) – Sankarea – (7,9/10) – Here is the thing: that third episode was really, really good. That’s the reason why I haven’t dropped this yet, and I have to admit that Rea is very well acted and interesting to watch. My big problem is that most of the rest of the cast isn’t, in particular that cousin and the other classmates of the lead character.
#22 (new) – Saint Seiya Omega – (8/10) – Saint Seiya’s problem is that it stays a bit in the shadows of everything. On one hand it’s still in the shadows of Heartcatch Precure and Casshern, who both were written much better and had much more interesting characters, and it’s overshadowed by the rest of this season being incredibly good and good-looking as well.
#21 (new) – Jormungand – (8,1/10) – Slick action in a gritty setting, with characters who can’t stop snarking. So yeah, that combination didn’t work in this show’s favor, but as a gun-slinging show it still is quite entertaining and holds a lot of potential.
#20 (7) – Aquarion Evol – (8,1/10) – Aquarion Evol is in the middle of a bunch of training arcs. To make up for this dull-sounding premise, it has made this some of the weirdest training arcs in a long while. This show has gotten completely bizarre at this point. Whether the character-development worked or not depends on the finale, though, because the character-development has been a bit unimpressive. Especially Zessica is in the danger zone.
#19 (8) – Hunter X Hunter – (8,25/10)

The thing with Nen is that in order to realize how amazing it is, you first need to sit through a bit of explanation about how it works. It’s gonna be worth it, though. I’d also like to say something about the animation in this series: it does have Madhouse’s trademark CG and the inbetween animation can be quite smooth at times. But it’s all feels too much like manga panels that move around. It misses some dynamic movement. Some extra touches on the animation, and I mean more than once in a while showing a character who is shaded really well. Give me interesting movement.

#18 (new) – Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – (8,25/10)

The peculiar thing about this season is that in terms of pure comedies, there isn’t a lot noteworthy, if you ignore series like Uchuu Kyoudai, where the comedy isn’t the main focus. I could only find two good comedy shows this season, one of which is Poyopoyo which carried over from the previous season. Still, it’s a genre that is over-saturated, so I don’t mind. Poyopoyo still is awesome in how it consistently manages to take everyday situations for cat owners and make them fun. It’s also surprisingly sadistic at times.

#17 (new) – Hyouka – (8,25/10)

A Kyoani series I care about for once! Great animation and dialogue. The big potential pitfall of this series will be taking too long to build up; something that plagues a lot of Kyoani series.

#16 (new) – Uchuu Senkan Yamato 2199 – (8,25/10)

They actually gave a new coat over the original Yamato series. The first episode followed the plot of the first episode of the TV-series, but a lot was added to it, and the creators still nailed the epic feeling of the good Matsumoto Leiji series. I’m keeping my eye on this.

#15 (new) – Legend of Korra – (8,25/10)

This really is an exception. I am not going to watch Avatar. I do not have the time for that and there are too many other things that I want to spend my time on. Nevertheless, to keep track of this every week is just enough. What I really like about this is how it subverts Korra’s status as a hero and plays with it.

#14 (new) – Shirokuma Cafe – (8,25/10)

This series has no business being as good as it is, and yet, I love it. It’s just about a cafe run by a polar bear that has a penguin and a panda among its regular guests. The panda in particular is very annoying. But this show completely nailed all of these characters and their random conversations. It’s brilliant in how it uses the fact that the characters are nearly all animals and how they behave.

#13 (new) – Eureka Seven Ao – (8,25/10)

Interesting setting, completely different from Eureka Seven’s setting. The action is very solid as well, and the characters also are well acted. I like how there are many different parties with all their own interests. This show is building up to something very interesting here.

#12 (5) – Phi Brain – (8,25/10)

The new season has a ton of potential… IF the creators use it. If not, then it can also come crashing down horribly. That’s the kind of double-sided sword that brainwashing is. So far though, things are looking good with some nice side-character development. The visuals also look prettier compared to the first season.

#11 (new) – Kimi to Boku – (8,4/10)

The advantage this season has over the first: we already know the cast, and they’re already a bit developed. That has made this season much more bearable, and even though the blond kid still is annoying, it’s much less apparent compared to how he was in the past. The result is a very charming slice of life series that really knows its drama.

#10 (10) – Mirai Nikki – (8,4/10)

A fun and exciting ending to conclude the series with. This show really went over the top and delivered some very unexpected plot twists. It had some humps along the way, but with the finale I am still glad to have kept up with it.

#9 (new) – Nazo no Kanojo X – (8,4/10)

A very weird show, but I must say that the interplay between the two main characters is very entertaining to watch. It’s also got a terrific soundtrack.

#8 (new) – Tsuritama – (8,4/10)

This is the most grounded work of Kenji Nakamura to date: it’s just a show about a bunch of guys and fishing. It’s still really fun and uplifting, with a lot of quirky and fun characters to watch, on top of quite an artistic look. Can it live up to his other works in terms of depth, though?

#7 (new) – Natsuiro Kiseki – (8,5/10)

Natsurio Kiseki is forced. But considering its premise, it’s no wonder, and the creators make perfect use of this. Every episode had the girls find out something new about themselves, or come to terms with something,resulting into them growing as a character. This show loves to play around with its cast and put them into interesting situations. And really: the four of them work really well together.

#6 (6) – Mouretsu Pirates – (8,5/10)

Mouretsu Pirates has actually gotten better over the past month. The most recent developments are a bit forced to get all of the characters at the right places, but the result of this is incredibly fun and interesting science fiction.

#5 (new) – Lupin The Third – (8,5/10)

Very artistic and mature. You can really see that the creators are trying to turn this into a fun adventure, while also emphasizing on how incredibly feminine Mine Fujiko is. The result has style, and it’s quite fun, even for someone who isn’t a fan of the Lupin franchise. It’s in any case the most unique series of the season.

#4 (new) – Zetman – (8,5/10)

Having not read the manga, I have no idea how good that was, and I don’t care. Zetman is a very fine show with a lot of heart put into it. The animation really knows how to accentuate the characters’ faces, and the acting is bold and gripping. This show stands out, and it has really grabbed my attention, and for that I’m willing to overlook some pacing issues. In fact, I’d say that despite these issues, it still manages to know which scenes to focus on, instead of trying to rush through everything equally.

#3 (new) – Fate/Zero – (8,75/10)

Fate/Zero has really been fired off in this new season, wasting no time and showing huge developments in nearly all of its episodes. The wait after all of this build up was definitely worth it. Episode 2 also was a visual orgasm.

#2 (new) – Sakamichi no Apollon – (9/10)

The star of this season. I can’t believe how well this show is executed. The animation when the characters are playing instruments is incredible, and the best that any television series has ever been in portraying musicians. The drama between the characters is also amazingly well acted. The creators managed to put so much emotion into this series. Oh, and Yoko Kanno… she really delivers on the soundtrack for this one.

#1 (new) – Uchuu Kyoudai – (9/10)

In a season with so much competition, Uchuu Kyoudai stands very confidently at the top with pretty much the best characters of the season. No other show comes close to the amount of development that these guys have already had, and Mutta is an absolutely wonderful character to watch. It’s all just so down to earth and incredibly fun to watch. Now let the rumour that this will have 51 episodes be true!

Posted on with categories: Hyouka, Some Quick First Impressions

AKB0048

Short Synopsis: Our lead character wants to be an idol.
Okay, so like expected, my brain just exploded by all of the reasons in which this series just does not make sense. The premise, but also the small details and decisions the characters make; for god’s sake there are just so many things about this series that are in no way possible when you think about them. The good news however, is that this was the best first episode of an idol show that I’ve seen for a year now. For once, it had no annoying characters. Surprisingly, the voice actresses (presumably members of AKB48) actually take up on cues and actually are able to act a bit. It’s nothing stellar or anything, but I expected much blander and annoying than what we got here. And granted, the idol series for the past year aren’t really a big standard to live up to (Uta Prince, Symphogear, Pretty Rythm… only Idolmaster was anywhere near decent), but still this actually felt well paced and had decent writing. It caught my interest. The big question is how on earth are they going to about the ludicrous plot of this. In the original Macross, the idols made sense in the story and had an explanation, but ever since that seems to have gone more and more into the background for Shoji Kawamori. Having an evil government that bans music is by far not enough. Oh, and I also hope that the concert scenes will be better than what they showed in this episode. Ugly dancing CG is something that I don’t ever thing has been done right.
ED: Ugly dancing CG.
Potential: 60%

Hyouka

Short Synopsis: Our lead character gets to be friends with the school idol.
Well, in a season that has so many visually standing out series, Hyouka comes and joins them with some very realistic animation. Along with its own share of very artistic shots. Other than that, this was very solid for a first episode: the dialogue is all well written, and it uses its mystery very subtly by making its mysteries small, and then explaining them with ordinary logic. The characters are already dynamic and far from cliches and it’s definitely the most realistic high school series of this season. However, Kyoani: you are some amazing animators. So why do you always have to go back to high schools? There is a vast diversity of different settings that you could explore. Well, at the very least I’m happy enough because this finally is a show I’m interested in. It’s not just random antics but this episode is clearly building up to something, and with writing and animation that are so good I’m definitely going to follow it. My only fear would be that it would take too long to build up. This series is 21 episodes long, and if it uses this well it can turn into a great series. However if this starts pulling a Pesona 4 it can get boring quite fast.
OP: Nice use of the water ripple effect. The song’s boring, though.
Potential: 85%

Posted on with categories: Uchuu Kyoudai

So… much…. character-development.

I can’t believe how well the creators made use of this episode where Mutta pays a small visit to Hibiki. It just shows how much the two changed over the years. And it’s not a simple change either: the two of them evolved multiple times over the years and are by far the two most dynamic characters of the entire season. The bond between the two of them in this episode was also just amazing to watch. And that for an building up episode.

I loved how Mutta kept criticizing the tiny things that Hibiki did wrong throughout this episode in order to distract from his own inferiority complex. But really, it also showed that Mutta is a perfectionist, unlike his brother. This perfectionism probably lead to his car being a success. And really: it’s not like Mutta is your average Joe with no accomplishments either. Mutta continues to look over it, but pulling off such a thing is no small feat either. Hibiki in any case can’t boast to have created something like that.

I also loved the dialogue in this episode, and the way in which Mutta and Hibiki talk to each other: it really feels like these two knew each other for their entire lives. This episode also finally revealed the identity of that dog in the OP, and it turns out to be Hibiki’s. At first I really feared it to be this series’ annoying animal mascot. And yeah, it was annoying for a while, but the great thing about it: it knew when to quit.
Rating: **+ (Excellent+)

Posted on with categories: Fate/Zero

So now that Caster and Lancer are gone, this series immediately moves on to another thing that it has been promising for ages now: Kotomine Kirei. The entire episode was dedicated to just building up to the moment where Kirei would betray his master. The moment itself wasn’t really unexpected, as right when Irisviel requested him to pull back from the Grail war it was obvious that he wouldn’t just let that happen, and afterward he was handed a knife of all things, but the scene itself was very satisfying. Also helped by a lot of budget being poured into that one scene.

Now, let’s see what he can do in this series now that he has some power again, and can act independently. With four episodes this series killed off a huge amount of characters, compared to how relatively few important characters died in the first 10 episodes. It definitely made good use of the build-up.

The one thing I don’t really get as someone unfamiliar with the Fate franchise is the squiggly lines on the priest’s arm that Kirei took over somehow. How does that work anyway? What power does this guy have, and why does he have it? Why did the grail find it good idea to have a guy like this, especially when he’s allied to some of the masters and could have just refueled Tohsaka’s command spells on a whim? Also, if one needs to defeat all seven servants in order to get to the holy grail, then what about Rider’s wish to become human? And does his master know about this? So what’s in it for the servants to win the holy grail war anyway?
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on with categories: Mouretsu Pirates

Now this is where everything just comes together. Talk about an amazing episode here. The plot just got 10 times more interesting.

And the strange thing is that even though when you summarize this episode in just one line, it sounds horribly cheesy: the Bentenmaru saves Jenny Dolittle who has been forced to marry against her will. But the background and detail and all sorts of dependencies and politics that the creators threw into this episode were just awesome. This episode just showed how fragile the pirate business is, and how the Bentenmaru is completely dependent on insurance companies. Those insurance companies can be manipulated. The question remains how Jenny managed to start a company that gained such an amount of wealth, but with her connections, it’s probably not impossible.

Also, I really like how the creators waited 16 whole episodes before revealing that two characters are lesbian. This way it feels much more like being lesbian is just a part of who they are, rather than making their sexual orientation their biggest defining character trait. It worked really well and the two characters in question make for a very interesting and down to earth couple.

Also a nice touch is how this episode toyed around with out expectations and imagination. This series has been so grounded that when the girls started imagining how Jenny must be held captive, in full bride gown and all, it had to be one of those crazy delusions you see everywhere. And in the end, that delusion turned out to be what really happened.

My only complaint is how suddenly everyone is incredibly competent at their jobs. I mostly noticed this at the end of this episode. But really: this episode was the one who put Mouretsu Pirates a notch above the other big Sci-fi shows this year. Let’s see if they can follow.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Posted on with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Nazo na Kanojo X – 03: What sets the soundtrack of this series on top of all of the others is hard to describe, but that one track it has that it always plays at the episode climaxes brings out a ton of emotion. – ** (Excellent)
#2: Natsuiro Kiseki – 04: That rock is very cruel: toying with the wishes of teenaged girls, and giving them a big middle finger when they try to fix it. Nevertheless though, this episode once again had some really good character development. I also really like how well this show uses the fact that some of its characters are athletic, while others aren’t. – ** (Excellent)
#3: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 16: I love how the creators are able to take everyday situations, throw a bit of sadism into them, and make them fun. That Civet cat in particularly worked well with that in this episode. – ** (Excellent)
#4: Shirokuma Cafe – 04: You know I could complain about how Panda was annoying again and all. But they actually showed the polar bear driving a car this episode! The drive-through part in particular was awesome. It’s very hard to correctly explain why this series is so good to someone who has never seen it, though. – ** (Excellent)
#5: Kimi to Boku – 17: This episode was about the twins. Quite refreshing to see the blond kid completely gone. Quite heart-warming to see some of the conflicts between them. – *+ (Great)
#6: Jormungand: The crazy obsessive lesbian is a trope that seriously needs to die. What’s wrong with having just a regular lesbian on the cast? I did like the tension that the boy soldier created in this episode, though. – * (Good)
#7: The Legend of Korra – 03: Very good fight scenes, and the real introduction of the resistance holds potential, but the amount of cliches in the first half was a bit annoying, and this show has this “Saturday Morning Cartoon’-feel to it. – * (Good)
#8: Hunter X Hunter – 28: It’s finally time for the introduction of Nen, the single best power system of any shounen out there. And it lacks a bit of subtlety here. The creators just send waves of random CG without much variation to Gon and Killua. At the very least, comparing the old and new version with each other has given me a new appreciation for how well the 1999 version was made, regardless of how accurate it may have been to the manga. – * (Good)
#9: Medaka Box: If a character is good or bad at handwriting: SHOW this. Don’t just have random characters claim this. Don’t tell me that your animators only know how to do flashy action-scenes, Gainax. – (Enjoyable)
#10: Sankarea – 04: Very annoying episode with lots of cliches. Especially that cousin and those classmates are not interesting to watch at all, not to mention that the creators actually went for a “walking into the shower scene”. this episode was saved by Rea’s changes and development.
#11: Saint Seiya Omega – 04: Rather boring training episode with generic RPG element explanation. – (Enjoyable)

Introducing this season’s Kaleidoscope. I like to experiment with these things, as it’s the perfect format to try out different stuff. This time, because there are so many series that stand out, I’m going to do a ranking: from best to worst, the episodes that caught my attention the most each week of all of the series that I’m not fully blogging, followed by a small blurb for each series (blurbs can also just be “unimpressive”, otherwise it would just take up too much time for some shows). This way I can also share my thoughts of Hunter X Hunter, without having to dedicate an entire entry to it (although I will remove it from this list as soon as the Hunter X Hunter fanbase arrives again and starts telling me how I should enjoy my series…).

Every week on Sunday I will post a new entry for this Kaleidoscope, with weeks beginning on Sunday and ending on Saturday this time. I usually try to have weeks start on Monday, but this is much more convenient because nothing airs on Friday and Saturday, allowing me time to catch up (not to mention the ungodly amounts of series that air all at the same time on Sunday, on top of me being very busy on most Sundays with this thing called real life), and I’ll update this entry as the week goes along.

Also, as for the series that didn’t make the cut (meaning the series that I’m not going to watch this season):
Arashi no Yoru ni ultimately isn’t worth it. It’s overacted and I’ve already seen the story before.
Accel World has some potential, but it doesn’t have any interesting characters whatsoever, not to mention that it’s got a pretty dull and annoying male lead.
Tasogare Otome Amnesia has really bad acting. Plus, the girl turns round and the guy immediately goes for her boob. Now that’s bad fanservice that needs to die.
Kuroko no Basuke, I don’t think that it can really improve beyond what it has shown here. It’s still a jump series full of shounen powers, and it will probably follow a very constraining format. It in any case doesn’t live up to the standard that sports series have set in the past.
– I actually enjoyed the first two episodes of Saki. However, that got me thinking: the reason I enjoyed them so much, and why I actually managed to finish the first Saki, is because there were no Mahjong battles. I’m bailing out while I still can, because those mahjong matches in the first season were just an insult.
Shining Hearts needs more ambition. The characterization isn’t good enough to make this a good slice of life series, and for an adventure it just goes nowhere with an entire episode being dedicated to… a nasty storm.
Acchi Kocchi fails for me as a slice of life due to its annoying characters.
Kuromajo-San ga Tooru also lacks ambition and is just too dull.
– And then there are comedies like Gon, Haiyore, Zombie and Jewel Pet, which just aren’t funny enough to warrant a watch.

Posted on 27 April 2012 with categories: Eureka Seven Ao

The setting of Eureka7 Ao is completely different now that Eureka somehow traveled through time, but I like that: it shows that the creators really attempt to go for something different here, rather than to dwell on what worked. The big challenge with this approach will be: what can they do in order to make up for it?

In any case, I like how not nationalistic this series is. After so many series that are about Japan being in danger,this series actually split up the country and made Okinawa declare independence. Of course having this set in a country beside Japan would have been even better, but at least this is a step into the right direction.

This episode also dedicated a lot of time to the islanders and i must say that I like how this series already has many different parties with their different interests. what’s more, the way they are portrayed makes them all feel alive. The best example of this was the scene where Ao arrives back at his grandfather’s house, and saw his grandfather busy salvaging his stuff from his burning house: it shows that even when the camera isn’t focused on them, they’re busy with their own agenda. It’s been a while since I watched a show that had this done well.
Rating: *+ (Great)

Posted on 26 April 2012 with categories: Tsuritama

This episode had a lot of build-up in it, with most f it being devoted to Yuki learning how to properly cast a fishing-line in an almost shounen-like way. On top of that we get a lot of character building. This is the kind of episode of which we can only say whether it succeeded or not at the end of this series. It all depends on whether the rest of the episodes use the build-up provided in this episode well.

The key will be Yuki’s grandmother. This episode revealed that Yuki has very big psychological issues and he gets even worse when something happens to his grandmother. his episode had him sorting his thoughts out on that, but it’s not enough. And no, having his grandmother collapse for real later in the series won’t be enough either. That’s just cliched.

What I did like in this episode was the use of emotion in this episode. Especially the end of this episode where everyone was just yelling out their frustrations worked well with me. This show is well acted, and the characters are quite diverse, while having their distinct personality. The only exception to this is Haru. He’s a bit too overacted.

Also, Tapioca is a duck!? I could have sworn it was a goose.
Rating: * (Good)

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Kaiser-Eoghan
Of course I don't want to dismiss the fact that hentai manga for gay men exists,if one wanted it there is seinen yaoi, ie Bara manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Which I attribute it to being less passive than just watching something.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I will say, I do think self-insertion is more effective in relation to videogames.
Kaiser-Eoghan
On this I as a bicurious man agree, when I read a romance story, I just want ad like a romance ore relationship story, its not special to me what the race or orientation of characters are.
Kaiser-Eoghan
My brother also felt that romance stories involving homosexual characters often falter in a space where the same sex pairing becomes more about pure novelty than just being a love story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Imredjimmy, who posted on here as a user before, he himself homosexual had issues with yaoi manga, feeling that it didn't address issues properly.
Kaiser-Eoghan
He feels "All romance stories belong in the romance section and shouldn't be too categorized and that most yaoi/yuri isn't really for the homosexual audience"
Kaiser-Eoghan
Is it really fanservice for a homosexual audience though? I do find both male and female characters attractive as a bicurious man but it has to be admitted, shounen-ai and yaoi is really a thing for girls and bi men, I can admit that. My brother, a gay man is very critical of yaoi/shounen-ai as well as yuri/shoujo-ai.
Anonymous1831032
You are overly critical
Anonymous1831032
why can't gay people have 'fanservice' without being compared to fish blindly poking for worms and being caught by some manipulative fisherman? It's 'normal' for weebs to watch 'cutesy' or 'moe' shows.
Anonymous1831032
Who cares dude. I liked the show. The term 'queer baiting' is fucking insulting.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - I agree with that, there is a lot of meandering in Hourou Musuko manga, it makes it feel more realistic and grounded. But there's a reason many storytellers don't tell the most boring aspects of real life, like constantly pondering about what the future may bring.
Vonter
Pokemon and Zelda let the community make the conjectures and the creators mostly shy away from explaining them, because they fear they'll write themselves into a corner.
Vonter
I mean, not all things should make statements. Ranma 1/2 is recognizable, despite being a comedy. Conan is iconic and its just contained mystery stories, despite the themes of Evangelion the creators have admitted the use of christian elements was because of aesthetics, moreso than delivering a statement.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Some felt that the manga for hourou musuko felt more low key in tone than the anime.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Travlos, I've noticed the site seems to be giving you trouble setting a username sometimes, best to just create an account instead.
AidanAK47
@Anon, that respect seems on different levels for people though. I mean I seen people championed Yuri on Ice as a major win for LGBT representation in anime while I myself just saw it as queer baiting seeing as the series itself couldn't admit it's characters were gay.
Anonymous1829806
Travlos here: I know many of the AoTitan fans hate the new direction of the manga, but I love it. Gimme more war!

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

So overall how is Junji Ito? From what ive read so far, it seems pretty hit or miss on the horror/gore front. Failing to live up to the manga. I havnt read it though, so im curious what ya think
AidanAK47
Akumetsu?
Anonymous1828142
Wearing a mask
Anonymous1828142
What was the name of the manga where the main character is some superhuman high school student who goes around fighting Japanese politicians
Lenlo
On a side note, I should really start Violet Evergarden at some point...
Lenlo
"Anime is dying" is just a meme that gets thrown around because of Miyazaki.
Lenlo
Maybe. I dont think average score per year is a good metric though, as the cash ins are increasing, but I doubt the passion projects are decreasing. For instance we had /alot/ of duds this year, but people only really remember/care about the good ones of which there was a fair number. It wasnt a bad year for decent/good anime.
AidanAK47
Well yeah, but they didn't have as many Animation studios back then as we do right now. So it's not so much that we lost artistic merit but rather the number of studios cashing in on popular trends for a quick buck have increased. Even then, I am willing to put money on there being just as much harem anime in yesteryear as we have cute girls shows in present.
Lenlo
Perhaps, but I would argue those were on smaller scales, and even then, thats not so different from Western animation or movies. Just look at Warner Bros and their DC push after the success of Marvel. Every industry has those who chase successful trends, yet they arnt failing
AidanAK47
@lenlo, the thing is though that before Moe crap there was eva copy crap and before eva copy crap you had space opera crap and before space opera crap you had hyperviolet OVA crap. The industry has always tried to cash in on a popular trend.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel people went apeshit over, say highschool of the dead because they never saw a bunch of old B/exploitation films, thus that show was never special to me and even failed at an imitation of such.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think people getting to excited for it being unique to a single medium or for, its setting themselve up for disappointment.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I just think its incredibly limited thinking to base it all on just ONE medium, you CAN hold up anime to film when anaylzing anime.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Why should 91 days get a free pass just because its an anime about gangsters? Go watch a film about it instead which theres probably many of, joker game fail you as the mature spy thriller it ended up not being, who cares, Tinker tailor soldier spy exists.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I dislike this "Its unique for an anime/manga to do this, so instantly lets latch on to it, despite fact that same something is already extremely prevalent in other mediums "
Kaiser-Eoghan
Case in point 91 days and Joker game "It has adults, lets pre-rejoice before the show even came out"
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel though because of the level of dissatisfaction with said moe shows that people are going to leap far too quickly on anything just slightly different, getting their hopes up too high and end up feeling let down.
Lenlo
That, or it all comes crashing down around our ears. With stuff like Houseki no Kuni and Made in Abyss from last year however, I think its going to be ok. We are just getting inundated with crap right now.
Lenlo
I do think that some of the artistic part of it has been lost, its gotten diluted in the never ending river of Moe crap. But that doesnt mean its gone. Just harder to find. Eventually all the random moe shows no one cares about will fail and stop getting made. But the anime audience will still be around, to enjoy the better stuff thats left.
Lenlo
Same thing happened in the mid/late 90's and early 00's to American cartoons.
Lenlo
Eh, I dont think anime is dying. Changing no doubt. Its going through a rough growth stage right now. It has a bigger audience than ever and people are trying to cash in on that with lots of shows that are basically the same
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Tank you and damn you for posting screencap of loli-tachibana, I now have cuteness overload a diabeetus =<
Kaiser-Eoghan
I realize thats a very minor detail to focus on though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Thats why I can really really get into a history manga if the art is top quality, the costume designs.
Kaiser-Eoghan
On the historical thing, I have a massive I repeat massive thing for full body medieval armoured characters hacking the shit into things or just the armour in general , especially templar armour designs. I also have an little obsession with male aristocratic army uniforms from the Prussian era and world war 2.
Kaiser-Eoghan
That recent Urasawa manga Travlos mentioned is ending also
@Mario: We might get a complete adaptation of after the rain, the manga is ending.
Kaiser-Eoghan
More historical manga I found, haven't read the second one however, I didn't hear those two mentioned on here either before.
Kaiser-Eoghan
[link src="http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Hawkwood
http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Ad-Astra-Scipio-to-Hannibal"]
AidanAK47
@Anon, yes clearly you know better than everyone else on the planet despite having no evidence whatsoever to back up you claims. Thank you nameless Stranger, we owe you a debt for telling us the same thing we hear every year. Let me congratulate you by kicking you out the door.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can generally come up with an opinion for what I follow/watch/read , but I don't really have one on kokkuu.
KTravlos
Well we watched the first episode of Kokkuku. Interesting. The ED theme is quite the fanservice.
SuperMario
@Ktravlos: If your like to check out some other shows this season then I'd definitely recommend After the Rain.
SuperMario
@KTravlos: at least Kino is thought-provoking. I can't say the same for Violet Evergarden. In fact I remain skeptical with VE
KTravlos
I am quite enjoying both Violet Evergarden and Mahoutsukai. Violet gives me similar vibes to the first Kio series, though obviously Kino was a better series.
SuperWooper
EPIC post, anon!
Anonymous1825128
Of course, as ardent fans of anime, the writers of this site would not deign to agree or even entertain the idea that their passion is no longer the same artisanal endeavor it once was.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Oh. Actually surprised I forgot about that. Yeah, when it comes to something being described as edgy I think Goblin Slayer fits that definition perfectly.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, You can still throw down your take if you want.
Anonymous1824209
AidanAK47 - Or the women shields.
Lenlo
You know, sometimes I dont regret forgetting about this chatbox. Missing the "anime is dying" conversation? One of those times
AidanAK47
Oh, Goblin Slayer is getting an anime adaption. I was rather lukewarm on it but I wonder how the anime is going to handle the rather unsavoury aspects. Like the rape. Lots and lots of rape.
AidanAK47
I remember the last guy said he would make a chart and I thought it was a brillent idea as at least something useful could come out of this old dead horse. Then his chart turned out to be a useless jpeg with series thrown to the left or right.
AidanAK47
It does stir up conversation but it's really just the same conversation repeated. I remember stating the exact same points Nayrael and Bokusen are saying around a year ago when this last came up.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Indeed Ratings are subjective but it would at least be a general mainstream consensus of the quality of anime over the years. Not final but at least it's better evidence than one persons general assumption. And other factors are impossible to quaitify.
Nayrael
A good parody of the "Anime back then and now - what happened? meme (if the links are not blocked here): https://i.imgur.com/JZqxz6f.jpg
Nayrael
Not to mention that back in the olden days you didn't see every Anime that aired. Official translators and fansubbers selected the best stuff, which resulted in you seeing the best shows and never even knowing about the shit-tier shows.
Bokusen
I think that people who say "anime is dying" are just getting too nostalgic. It's easy to remember the hit series from earlier seasons. It's less easy to remember all the forgettable generic series that you dropped after 1 episode, and so anime tends to "seem better" back then because of people's tendency towards selective memory.
Anonymous1820731
Why are there more bad anime? Because there are more anime being made. That means the good ones are buried under the lots of bad ones. But saying "anime is dying" from that is like saying "music is dead because I don't like Britney Spears." Why does this conversation always come up, its obvious conversation bait.
Anonymous1820589
@Aidan: You are the first to obsess over the fact that reviews are subjective. And since they're subjective, looking at anime 'ratings' over time does nothing to gauge the measure of effort and artistic talent that goes into making anime.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Which I got my answer by the way.
SuperWooper
>average review scores
What do those have to do with whether anime is "dying" or not? You'd need to look at the money.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Want to add that I agree with both you and Aidan, only brought up those two topics back there because I wanted to know what shows now will be popular in the future.
SuperMario
I'm on the side of Aidan regarding to this. For me it's not neccessary means the anime industry has become "better" or "worse", it's just that it takes new shape and trends and based on the number of anime produced, the industry isn't going down soon
AidanAK47
Am I really going to draft up a chart gathering average review scores of the past 25 years just t shut up this talk of anime dying?
But even if I did that won't toss aside this nonsense.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I know this is complete guesswork.
AidanAK47
Plus the industry is dying? Bloody hell, we got major companies FUNDING anime. Streaming services and more anime coming out that ever before. You can argue that this new anime is weaker but honestly it's just misguided. It takes time but great shows are still coming out. Just like back then.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Well thats kind of what I meant, what, when passage of time comes into it are going to end up being classic based on that, speculatively speaking.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Thats probably a much better way of phrasing it, inheriting mantles. I'm going to say that promised neverland is presently along with Titan a BIG modern shounen.
AidanAK47
Anyway my point is that the shows of the past, the so called classics, are just as flawed as the shows of today. It is only through the passage of time that they become classics. When Stein;Gate finished airing, I seen no one call it a classic. Same goes for Madoka and Fate/Zero. Now, you have people putting up the pedestals.
AidanAK47
Though if anything has inherited the Shounen mantle, it's likely Boku no hero.
AidanAK47
There is no big three Shounen and that's honestly for the best. Because in generally the declining aspect of Naruto and Bleach was mainly due to the pressure on the mangaka to put out chapters on a weekly basis. In fact it's pretty much the primary factor in Bleachs decline.
AidanAK47
Bebop is great but even it is hit and miss by nature. Doubt many remember much about the casino episode and the Alien spoof episode is likely not anyone's favorite. Eva is massively flawed but no one wants to admit it due to the massive amount of praise it receives and influence it has on the industry.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But what is the new big three shounen?
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Wooper: Mary and the Witch’s Flower is the first feature film from Studio Ponoc, which spun off from Studio Ghibli in early 2015. Given Ghibli’s towering reputation, the bar was high for this inaugural flick, which recently made its way to U.S. theaters, giving Lenlo and I a chance to see it on the big […]

In This Corner of the World (2016) Movie Review – 90/100

In this Corner of the World (for the purpose of this review, I’ll refer it as “Corner”), is the truest slice of life drama if you ever encounter one, in that it’s a slice into an ordinary life of an ordinary girl during the War period. That speaks into the very first strength of Corner, […]

Houseki no Kuni (Fall 2017) Review – 92/100

Make no mistake, Houseki no Kuni is the most ambitious anime project of the year. Not only because it’s an entirely CG project (and make a damn good use of it, mind you), or because of its narrative scope that at once strange, grand and beauty, but also in its very conception in their production […]

Fate/Apocrypha Anime Review – 64/100

I was quite excited for Apocrypha and in the so called year of Fate adaptations, it looked to be the crown jewel. Sadly, partly due to lacking adaption and the source lacking in areas, this anime turned out to be not quite the jewel I thought it would be. It’s hard to call this a […]

Kino’s Journey -The Beautiful World Anime Review – 73/100

One of the surprises of the year was to see the return of Kino’s Journey, a very well regarded and more unique anime among those deemed classic. Many, myself included, were very much looking forward to the return of Kino and her talking Motorrad. Though due to some factors this series doesn’t quite live up […]

Girls’ Last Tour (Fall 2017) Review – 86/100

Girls’ Last Tour falls within my favorite new trend that emerging the anime medium over the last decade: a dark moe anime. Set in a post-apocalyptic world where the human race has almost extinct, our two girls wandering around the world in their kettenkrad looking for food and shelter. If it sounds a bit bleak […]

Two tales of War: Reviewing The Heroic Legend of Arslan and Altair: A Record of Battles

It would not be an exaggeration to say that my favorite type of anime is the political-military epic. This comes partly out of my profession, I study war and politics, but also my hobby, as military and political history is something I enjoy. When it comes to anime there is a clear sub-category that can […]

The Night is Short, Walk On Girl (2017) Movie Review – 92.5/100

“How many decades have passed since our drinking contest?” “It hasn’t been that long. It was only a few hours ago, this very night!” That gap in time perceiving plays a significant role in Night is Short. For you see, it all depends on how our perception of the surroundings and time itself can affect […]

Ballroom e Youkoso Review – 65/100

In the weeks leading up to the summer 2017 season, Ballroom e Youkoso was one of the most buzzed-about new series. Produced by the Production I.G. team responsible for the smash hit Haikyuu!!, and set to air on Amazon’s brand new Anime Strike service, the series had no shortage of promotion or hype behind it. […]