Posted by psgels on 5 May 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Natsuiro Kiseki – 05: What a completely adorable episode. The characters just continue to grow here. even though there was no stone today, this was one of the best depictions of a cold in a long while. – **+ (Excellent+)
#2: Shirokuma Cafe: I don’t get it. Some of the jokes in this seris are horribly predictable. This episode again had all kinds of animals suggest bizarre dishes around their favorite food, and Shirokuma’s bad puns. And yet it’s hilarious and so refreshing to watch. The punchline to the parfait fair also was delightful. – ** (Excellent)
#3: The Legend of Korra – 04: Cheesy romance aside, this is the first time I’ve been impressed by this series. The creators used Korra’s brashness in an excellent way here in combinatiton with the politics. – ** (Excellent)
#4: Kimi to Boku – 17: This episode played up Chizuru’s annoyance to the max again, but I’m not bothered by that as much as I used to. Again this episode was really charming and simple. – ** (Excellent)
#5: Sankarea – 05: Very torn on this episode. It would have been #1 if it wasn’t for that annoying cousin. Excellent build-up and pay-off, although I do wonder whether turning zombies in assaulters was the right decision. – ** (Excellent)
#6: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 17: I’m still amazed at how short this series is: not including the OP and ending screen, its episodes are only two minutes and ten seconds long. This episode had 6 different sketches in just that time-frame. All of them were fun. – ** (Excellent)
#7: Jormungand – 04: Good episode for Koko as finally her character was a bit more rounded. Also, “I am an American! I have blond hair, I work for the CIA and I am an asshole!” – *+ (Great)
#8: Nazo no Kanojo X – 04: A bit of a step down compared to last weeks, mostly because the saliva is starting to lose its gimmick, but nevertheless that girl whose name I’ve forgotten had some nice moments together with Urabe. – *+ (Great)
#9: Medaka Box – 05: I noticed that Medaka is often able to hold the higher moral ground, solely because she’s so ungodly good at everything. Will this get used later? Also Gainax, there are times where a slideshow is good, but there are also times where a slide-show is just lazy. For a Gainax series I am surprised how actually mediocre the action in this series is. – * (Good)
#10: Hunter X Hunter – 29: Uh, Hunter X Hunter… are you serious in this? Do you really intend to have people call out the names of their attacks, accompanied by huge letters? Is that your idea of how to best represent Nen? – * (Good)
#11: Saint Seiya Omega – 05: Is the entire series going to be about training and people being hot blooded? – (Enjoyable)

54 Responses

  1. Roninski says:

    So glad you’re doing Korra in the Kaleidoscope =D Glad you’re enjoying it.

  2. Kiseki says:

    Most people have been making a bigger deal out of Asami than the main point in the episode. I…almost teared up at the end of the episode. ;~;

  3. Tanz says:

    The romance wasn’t really cheesy. It’s a good thing they actually skipped most of the parts about it. Was pleasantly surprised that even Mr. Jerk can fall in love actually.

    I /cried/ at the end of the episode >>

  4. Mr. Mestopheles says:

    Can’t help but suspect that they might be setting up our young romantic interest for some bending loss later on…

  5. Kim says:

    Yeah the romances in Korra are cheesy (and they were cheesy in Avatar as well) but the writers are clearly aware of this fact. They are cheesy in a charming way, because let’s face it young love is often a bit cheesy and nothing wrong with that.

  6. Martin says:

    It’s cheesy because it’s a nickelodeon show.

  7. cru says:

    I hope Korra makes you more curious in the previous series :D The Last Airbender was truly great, and more adventure-esque and really picks up in its second season with some brilliant writing.

    But the up in production levels for Korra makes it just a feast for the eyes, and I’m loving how they’re exploring an avatar with a much less spiritual side.

    Also, Tenzin is great. Definitely my favorite character. I’m excited to see Zuko though.

  8. Scorcher says:

    Yes, the creators said before the show aired that there was going to be some cheesy teen romance or something like that…
    But the Avatar franchise is all about awesome battles, good characters and cheesy romance, and they are doing a great job in all 3…

    • bobzilla21 says:

      I dunno, the characters and battles are definitely strengths in both Avatar series(so far at least), but the original series’ cheesy romance worked because of the lack of drama involved. I don’t think it’ll be the same for Korra, since it seems to be a much larger focus this time, and it might be a cause for concern.

  9. Stars says:

    Oddly Jormungand episodes never feel like they go for 20 mins, but always feel like not much happens.

  10. mamori says:

    Just wanted to say how much I agree with this. *u* I honestly hate the drama because it’s been done and it’s always the same, bad outcome. I loved the first season better because it was refreshing to watch a story that was fun, quirky, and had a good plot. The selling point in my opinion was the lack of drama because honestly, I don’t need to see another series about American teenage drama.

    Just to back my wording there: I know the story is set in the Asian countries. However, the audience is towards Americans so obviously, they’d write to cater towards what Americans would be able to relate to.

    • mamori says:

      Er, thought it would link under but wanted to say I agree with bobzilla21’s post, not psgel’s post (the characters have been getting more and more annoying and I don’t see anything interesting with the plot; in fact, I predicted exactly how the story would go because it’s so obvious and Korra is really easy to read).

  11. kevin says:

    They call out the name of their attacks because that is what they do in the manga… It is also something that was frequently used in Yu Yu Hakusho back in the day. I do not understand your gripe with this or how it misrepresents Nen in anyway.

    • Hi says:

      The gripe is that psgels doesn’t like it, kevin–that’s why the comment was framed with rhetorical questions. The entry is only intended to be a small window into psgels’ impression of the show–nothing too much more than that, we have to accept–and the most prevailing sentiment psgels actually felt for the episode was disillusionment with how attack names are presented. The remark about “huge letters” implies that he thinks the method is invasive–and that’s a fair enough point, all told. There’s no reason to concur with the idea that his comments are becoming embarrassing just because he doesn’t like something, is there? Especially not when the episode actually got a good rating overall–the experience was just, for psgels, hampered by the presentation of attack names.

      • Machi says:

        I find this move to be a bit uneven for the animators side IMO since this was really something best left with the manga, only other shows that tend to do this are really kiddie shows afraid that the audience might not follow. Which again I find weird given that they do have a focus on action and doing the whole redundancy of literally spelling it out in front of the screen baffling since it does detract from action – you want less reading and more movement.

        This sorta thing may work on the manga, which actually try to add effects to the way they spell out words as it is incorporated into the art style. But not with an animation but again I find this baffling on the side of the animators since they had avoided such in the past.

        • kevin says:

          It was literally 1 second of a 22 episode episode. This is griping for the sake of griping. If you do not like it that’s fine but to say that it misrepresents Nen in anyway is utterly ridiculous. The name appearing on the screen is a stylistic choice that harkens back the old school vibe of classic shonen series such as Yu Yu Hakusho or Saint Seiya. Some of you seem to forget that Hunter x Hunter is a shonen series not a seinen. Another ridiculous statement I hear often is that this series is too shonen, well what do you expect when adapting a shonen manga? *Facepalm*

          • kevin says:

            Not only that but the attack name calling is actually integral to the plot as Gon later on bases his own attacks around this very concept. You don’t have to like it but it is a necessary inclusion.

          • Machi says:

            I never had problems with the calling out I just said if you read closely is that it was redundant to actually literally spell it out. That the effect clearly is different when animated from the manga – which frankly I find odd because the animators had sense to avoid it earlier. In any case its not a MAJOR flaw or anything its just an oddity that you can’t help but notice.

        • Toto y Moi says:

          @Machi

          The problem is that in the future, characters no longer call out their attack names. Gido is one of the few in the entire series that does so. After the Heavens Arena arc, the names of characters’ Nen abilities are placed within fuzzy thought bubbles instead of speech bubbles.

          Although to some, it may seem distracting to have the full ability name placed on the screen. But Togashi’s done an interesting thing with Nen abilities; he’s tied them entirely to a character’s psyche. A character’s personality is revealed through the type of ability they create. As such, the names of the abilities are often sort of complex: he gives them a spoken-word pronunciation and a written one that greatly differs. I always appreciated this when reading the manga, so I’m glad that it makes an appearance here.

          • Machi says:

            I’m aware of the naming sense actually reflecting their character. However, looking at our outlooks its clear that this thing is rather superficial or just plain a matter of taste. Which brings back the point I don’t see this comment as being one necessarily of quality as some have extrapolated.

        • SirDerpalot says:

          @machi “that might not keep up”

          Please, tell me all about how characters stopping mid-fight, chit-chatting and saying the name of every move in every episode everytime is for adults with great attention spans.

    • darkerthanblackswordsman says:

      “[...] because that is what they do in the manga”

      How is that an excuse? (i) The manga is not perfect, no need to replicate things that don’t work. (ii) Manga is not anime – things that work in one might not work in the other.

      • komporrhmwn says:

        It didn’t work for psgels (that one caught me off guard!), so it doesn’t work, period? It’s a stylistic choice that may well turn some people off but there’s nothing *wrong* with it. It’s minor, anyway. Good job ignoring the 22 minutes full of wonderful characterization and animation and focusing on one second. This is straw grasping at its most awkward.
        Also, Nen does not stop at yelling attacks at each other. They did fine with the colors, didn’t they?

        Your “The manga is not perfect, no need to replicate things that don’t work” line of thinking, while true and applicable in many cases, could potentially create huge continuity problems with Hunter x Hunter. I guess you’re not familiar with the manga? (…Are you even familiar with the anime?)

        The new anime has actually strayed from the manga a few times, but in a way that doesn’t mess up the continuity. Togashi himself is involved with it, so it figures.

        • Machi says:

          I don’t see how this is straw grasping when we have literally only a blurb for his impressions of the episode. It hardly gives us an idea aside from the rating what he really thought of the episode. It seems to me more grasping at straws if you can extrapolate that much from his one liner.

          So we talk about the effect that’s a topic in itself. But talking about quality of episode in addition to continuity are while related far reaching and stuffing words in his mouth. Why? Because you’re merely assuming that is what the blurb is talking about yet you don’t have that basis since clearly we’re not mind readers – and we’re certainly not going to be able to read a mind with that one-liner.

          • komporrhmwn says:

            The straw grasping has nothing to do with the length of a comment, though. Shouldn’t he be as relevant and precise as he can, exactly because his writing space is limited? What about Gon’s clearly illogical choice to fight? What about Killua’s “quick and dirty is always better”? What about the shockingly good battle animation? What about a hundred other, more relevant things?

            Look at the other mini-reviews at this entry: except for Saint Seiya (which he kind of hated), when commenting on other episodes he’s listing any flaws while acknowleding the qualities. You can get a pretty good idea of what he liked and disliked about them.

            A “Good episode, but…” would suffice… If he would also not squabble over calling out the names of the attacks, as it is completely integral to the story and not just for show.

            I guess the better way to represent Nen (and to do anything, really) would be to do it exactly like the old series did? It would be funny if it was more or less the same then, but I don’t even remember and neither does psgels (he has said so himself), although that doesn’t seem to affect his loyalty.

            I can extrapolate that much from a one liner, plus past reviews and comments.

            I don’t really get what you’re trying to say in your second paragraph, but I was replying to darkerthanblack and I have no recollection of stuffing words in mouths.

          • psgels psgels says:

            komporrhmwn: the reason why I treat Hunter X Hunter differently is because I’ve pretty much been witting through a recap for more than half a year now, with still no end in sight, even though I very rarely rewatch things. The fact that I’m still with this series at this point is a testament to how good Hunter X Hunter is, but I’m not going to try and give a fair review to something that’s already been done before. The comments I give each episodes instead are the things that stuck in my mind the most after each episode, nothing more. I’ve just gotten tired at trying to be nice at this series.

        • Toto y Moi says:

          @psgels

          I think that the issue lies in your reluctance (and apparent dislike) to rewatch things that you’ve seen before. Especially since Hunter x Hunter is a series that, unless you really pay attention to every scene in every episode, a viewer will often miss the mark of what’s actually going on.

          The 1999 animated series is a testament to this: they got the character development of the series’ protagonist entirely incorrect. And in fact, many of the readers of the manga did as well. Madhouse’s subtlety is being lost on you because you’re treating this series as a re-run instead of something new.

          Case in point: Nen is treated very differently in this version as opposed to the 1999 series. In the 1999 series, Nen is treated as a superpower instead of a menacing technique with severe consequences (which both the manga and Madhouse portray). Even characters who are supposed to be “good guys” like Wing are seemingly using a power that seems to be dark in nature. But you haven’t gone so far as to even mention that change. Other bloggers, even ones watching for the first time, seem to be picking up on these.

          Unless you watch this series with a new mindset, I don’t think you’ll enjoy it. You’re predisposed not to. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but your opinion comes across as uninformed due to your often baseless annoyance with the show’s extremely minor details.

          You didn’t even pause to consider the reasons as to why this episode contained less material than the version in the 1999 series (episode 38)–a full chapter’s worth of material. Next episode will only cover another two chapters; Madhouse is spending two full episodes adapting chapters that were covered in 1.5 episodes in the older version. Madhouse’s version is often praised for its pace. So why is this episode shorter than in the old series?

          Give it a thought.

          • Hi says:

            Be very, very careful with this Toto: while your reading of the manga is convincing, it is ultimately an interpretation that is nowhere set in stone. You can say readers and the 1999 series got the reading of characters incorrect, but that is an extrapolation of your own based on evidence: Togashi has not confirmed or made particularly clear that veracity of your own reading of the manga. Pointing to other bloggers might help your case, but I’ve seen you air your opinion across a solid array of outlets: you may have contributed to this enlightened outlook yourself.

            I wish not to offend, but we have had such a paltry look at Nen in this new series that to say it’s been treated more like a menacing power is a very myopic statement. The 1999 series–however much one might berate it for its direction–can still be interpreted as communicating the malignancy of Nen.

            Lastly–and I’m really peeved with this–you do not by any account or any measure have any right to prescribe how somebody should watch a show. Calling psgels peeves to be baseless is utterly absurd: even if Madhouse is laying the groundwork for future events, it’s blatantly obvious that if some of us can complain about it in the here and now, then Madhouse–and Togashi–have done something that isn’t universally palatable. Your analyses are lovely–they really are–but please: your thoughts are interpretations. They are not set in stone: don’t treat them as such and use them to engineer a comment that psgels is going about his business with the wrong outlook.

        • Machi says:

          Given the way he actually writes blurbs from the Kaleidoscope I’d say its far more spontaneous than anything – hence I don’t see his conciseness as being one straight to the point as much as whatever stuck last in his mind (and clearly the flashing text as Kevin already pointed out earlier literally was at the last portion).

          Thus, I see this really as grasping at straws because I’ve never been of the impression that these were supposed to be concise informative lines but spontaneous impressions. I mean just look at the other comments and previous ones he’s written like Jormungand you think that’s a precise enough line to give me a good enough window to figuring out his view? Its easy to say nice character development but on what grounds etc but clearly I’m not going to get any answer to that. Then we simply look at the next sentence which is a quick spontaneous thought on stereotypes. Hence, I see this as just stuffing words down because these are spontaneous off the fly thoughts – nothing I would take seriously.

        • Toto y Moi says:

          @Hi

          “Be very, very careful with this Toto: while your reading of the manga is convincing, it is ultimately an interpretation that is nowhere set in stone. You can say readers and the 1999 series got the reading of characters incorrect, but that is an extrapolation of your own based on evidence: Togashi has not confirmed or made particularly clear that veracity of your own reading of the manga. Pointing to other bloggers might help your case, but I’ve seen you air your opinion across a solid array of outlets: you may have contributed to this enlightened outlook yourself.”

          Actually, there is proof… The 1999 series was building to an entirely different conclusion. Episodes 61 and 62 of the 1999 series were originally storyboarded to have an anime-only ending that eventually was changed due to Togashi’s dislike of it. Do you remember the “Eye for an Eye, Nen for Nen” motif (also one of Killua’s catchphrases in the 1999 series) that pops up (often) throughout the filler moments of Nippon Animation’s version? That’s probably the most major theme present within the work that isn’t from the original manga. In Furuhashi’s intended climax, Kurapika and Chrollo would have killed each other in a final battle. Kurapika would have died in Leorio’s arms. Gon would have re-encountered Ging with Kite. If you dig, you can find some scans of those storyboards online. Moreover, you can actually find remnants of Furuhashi’s foreshadowing of Kurapika’s death in some filler moments in the 1999 series–like in episode 45 especially. There are also herrings that imply Kurapika’s revenge isn’t a product of his own desire, but rather indoctrination forced upon him in childhood.

          And as far as my thoughts being “interpretations,” keep watching. Most of my posts convey knowledge common to fans of the manga overseas; rarely do I mention anything that hasn’t already been fully explained.

          “I wish not to offend, but we have had such a paltry look at Nen in this new series that to say it’s been treated more like a menacing power is a very myopic statement. The 1999 series–however much one might berate it for its direction–can still be interpreted as communicating the malignancy of Nen.”
          How was my statement at all myopic? I’d like an explanation for this, since I’m certainly confused as to what you mean. Pay attention to the ways in which Nen is introduced. Instead of a skill that explains paranormal activity and the reasons as to why people excel in their respective fields, Wing introduces Nen as a superpower that should be used by the forces of good. The added dialogue is very moralistic and positive. Contrast this to Wing’s disposition in the manga/2011 series–it’s very different in tone.

          “Lastly–and I’m really peeved with this–you do not by any account or any measure have any right to prescribe how somebody should watch a show. Calling psgels peeves to be baseless is utterly absurd: even if Madhouse is laying the groundwork for future events, it’s blatantly obvious that if some of us can complain about it in the here and now, then Madhouse–and Togashi–have done something that isn’t universally palatable. Your analyses are lovely–they really are–but please: your thoughts are interpretations. They are not set in stone: don’t treat them as such and use them to engineer a comment that psgels is going about his business with the wrong outlook.”
          This is a matter of paying attention to the details. Psgels watches a lot of anime every week, so I understand that it’s hard to pay close attention to something he feels that he’s seen before. But in all honesty, there have been several instances in this blog that indicate that he hadn’t paid attention to details or differing major ideas despite attempting to compare the two versions in just about every post. The show is at a disadvantage because of this. And does anyone really want to read a summary nitpicking some of the smallest details in a 22-minute long episode? His summary for this kaleidoscope focused on two moments that, when combined, lasted for less than ten seconds of the entire episode. And it’s entirely pejorative. But then he gives the episode a “* Good” rating? The rationale makes little sense to me.

          • Anca says:

            Oh, what you write makes a lot of sense. I remember thinking that Kurapika would die during the old series.

            I didn’t like the way Nen was introduced the first way – I remember thinking ‘oh yay, here’s the obligatory generic power. Why did they have to add it now, they did fine for so many episodes without it.’ But this time its introduction was foreshadowed at pretty heavily (imho), and its introduction was quick and not treated as something too special (at least compared to the 1999 version).

            My opinions are an odd case though, because I haven’t read the manga myself and liked the old series, but still think this one is better.

          • psgels psgels says:

            Toto: you have interesting theories. But to be completely honest, I am getting tired of one thing here: the way you keep telling me how I should enjoy my series, and how you keep telling me how to blog thi sereis.

            The thing is that I never claimed to be complete in these reviews. The thing you mentioned above how this episode was longer than usual: I actually did notice that a bit, but I just wrote it off as a random pacing issue (why wouldn’t I?) I just don’t have the energy to keep actively looking for new thigns in a recap after half a year of nearly the same content. Especially with such a focal and forceful fanbase.

          • Toto y Moi says:

            And Hi, I speak my opinion with utmost sincerity and respect for your own views as well.

          • Toto y Moi says:

            @psgels

            You’re right. My apologies. I’ll stop trying to tell you how to blog the show. It largely came from a place of disappointment in what I read. I’m a longtime fan of your blog, and appreciate the work that you do.

      • kevin says:

        The entire point of this adaptation was to adapt the source material in a more accurate manner and when compared to the 99 series it has done just that. It’s conveyed the tone set in the manga as well as having a soul of it’s own. Is it different to the manga? Yes, in some minor ways. But it does ultimately do what it set out to do which is do the original source material justice.

        The 99 series was a bomb in Japan for a number of reasons, the most often stated was it’s inability to accurately adapt a manga that people loved so very much.

        Now it’s not always necessary to follow a manga to the tee, a good example of the is Kids on the Slope (Sakamichi no Apollon), but in a case like Hunter x Hunter, which has more than 300 chapters to work off of, it is necessary so that plot holes and continuity errors are not created. This series is ultimately a love letter to Togashi’s manga, it is clear that the people working on it have a great appreciation for Togashi’s work and as such they are implementing little details here and there that would come up later on or that only true fans would pick up on.

        Something you may find interesting to know is that the characters calling out their attack names is in fact an important part of the story. Gon later on bases his own attacks around that very concept. So yes it is a necessary 1 second and no it does not at all misrepresent Nen (what a ridiculous statement by psgels).

        • Hi says:

          I need to clarify that the 99 series was not a bomb in Japan: a bomb of a series couldn’t spawn three subsequent OVAs, not least two of which had some pretty high production values channelled into them. That is misinformation. Looking at the BD and DVD sales for this series indicates that there’s some difficulty in shifting copies for the 2011 adaptation, but I’m not going to deem it a bomb in terms of TV rankings.

          BUT, I do understand where you’re coming from as regards adaptation of the manga material. I understand that it may be felt necessary to adapt the manga as close as possible so that any stylistic choices on the part of the author–immediately visible or otherwise–are not ignored. I do understand that–and I think your point should be heard. But please consider that there are alternative arguments that are every bit as valuable–and valid–as that opinion.

          Whether attack names are thrown up on screen in other shows of this kind or the manga is no reason for psgels not to comment on it negatively. Look, we all say things that come off the tops of our heads when we see something: good and negative. That’s what psgels has done. He pointed to the integrity of the rest of the episode when he gave it a good rating: we can’t be blind to that. But something annoyed him–and when you get something that feels unpalatable against a background of what is good, you’ll notice the bad–because it sticks out and can hamper your experience, no matter how short. That’s almost inevitable–and on something so personal and informal as a blog, it’s a poor show to knock an opinion that was never intended to be holistic.

          As you say yourself, it isn’t always necessary to follow the manga to a tee–and I think Machi and darkerthanblack hit the nail on the head: Togashi was writing a manga for the manga form–and he’s very good at it. He knows the manga form inside out, and he tailors it for his own purposes: characters come out of their panels, transitions work in consideration of page numbers, he ends on cliffhangers to keep viewers coming back for the next week, etc–but these things won’t necessarily work for television. He wasn’t writing for television. Attack names coming up on screen is more jarring in the moving form of television, it can be said–and that’s true enough. I feel that way.

          I also want to put forward an opinion of my own here: there’s nothing wrong with calling this series a love letter to Togashi, but this new series doesn’t marry up with my opinion of the manga. I think the overacting and bombastic soundtrack undermine the intelligence and subtlety of the manga–and that’s a valid opinion for one who knew nothing of the 99 series till recently, having read the manga from 2006. We all interpret the manga in very different ways, and it’s not up to anyone else to dismiss our own readings of it. You say this new series conveys the tone of the manga, but that’s your opinion based on your own feeling of what the manga represents–and I concur with some of them. But I don’t get the same sense of dissonance between Togashi’s oscillations between realistic and cartoon styles in this new show: I think it opts for consistency by focussing on the younger side. I don’t get the same earthy feeling to Togashi’s artwork in this new show–typified by his backgrounds and grubby artwork in the early volumes. As I said before, I don’t feel the same sense of maturity that I get from the manga in the acting, which is skewed younger in this new show–and I don’t think the music, with its electric guitars and such, really feels the essence of a manga that does so much in the way of implication. I reckon there are too many broad strokes to the soundtrack which can undermine Togashi’s portent and nuance. This is all subjective–and you’re very entitled and not at all wrong to feel differently–but the 99 series doesn’t factor into any of these opinions. I read the manga five-odd times before I even caught a glimpse of the original series when Viz released it. Attack names on screen is a perfectly fair criticism in this case, and even if you watched the old anime only, we don’t deny that calling out attack names is a part of the show: we don’t mind that. We just don’t appreciate the huge, bulking letters coming up on screen because if might feel a bit juvenile. HUNTER may be a shonen–but if I’m going by my own reading of the manga, it’s not an altogether typical one. Some can argue otherwise, but I genuinely don’t believe HUNTER is intended to play the shonen card straight. And a big chunk of its readership feels the same way–just as another chunk feels the same way you do. None are wrong.

          • komporrhmwn says:

            I don’t know the specifics of the ’99 bombing or not, but the animation of the Greed Island OVAs bordered on atrocious.

            I’m not going to comment about the psgels stuff, since I already have, except for this: he thinks almost everything that isn’t a complete pile of garbage is “good”, so that’s saying nothing.

            You’re absolutely right about Hunter x Hunter not being a typical shounen, I don’t think anyone who has read the manga views it as such.

            But here’s the thing: it starts as one, doesn’t it? There *are* hints (some more obvious than others) about the dark nature of the characters and the show, but they slowly build up until they explode during the Chimera Ant arc. Togashi time and time again plays with our expectations of the characters and the story.
            Until now, I think the new anime has done a terrific job of hiding the real nature of the show, just like the manga did early on. The real test for me is the Yorknew arc. That’s when we’ll know for sure what this adaptation is out to do.

            I’m optimistic.

          • Hi says:

            Sorry I can’t respond to you directly, komporrhmwn (page length issues?) but I think Greed Island looks fairly spiffing for its first eight episodes–comprising the first OVA–save for one mishap with gargantuan eyes. Though as I alluded to in my post, that third OVA–which we must never speak of–was handled in a slapdash sort of way, I’d say.

            As for the rating system, “good” is still “good”. It’s not merely “enjoyable” and it doesn’t have a minus rating. From what I’ve seen, psgels makes a good effort to keep his ratings fair. He knows his system; I say we detach our own perspective on it, for it represents his way of wanting to best indicate his feelings.

            Now, I do think that HUNTER starts off with the hallmarks of a shonen–and I’m with you on the inexorable movement towards the explosion later–but I don’t feel, so far, that this series illustrates that movement quite so proficiently. I feel that Togashi lays the foundations for that in ways that this series doesn’t capitalise on. Yorknew’s the test, as you say, but what I’ve seen so far doesn’t lead me to believe that Koshina has quite the confidence to illustrate that transition as cleverly as I would hope. Just my opinion, though–and I’m still watching, of course! We’re in for the long haul: I just wish my feelings for this series–and the manga, and the 1999 series–weren’t so bruised by the mood of negativity that’s been conjured up.

      • SirDerpalot says:

        Just because it was in the manga, doesn’t mean you have to NOT do it. And just because you change something from the manga, doesn’t mean it’s some awesome artistic idea.

        If you read the manga, no one calls out the name of his abilities anymore, except for few, who “think” if it and others who say it to confuse the enemy of what’s coming next (Rock, Paper, Scissors?). As in bubble thoughts. Calling names like Kamehemeha and Rasengan is pretty cliche and annoying. A name written in letters is pretty cool, they did something similar with Uvogin in the original anime.

  12. James says:

    Wow this blog is getting worse by the day.

    REALLY? You set yourself tp watch saint seya and want that on the 5th chapter people are fighting like they are pros?

  13. Juno says:

    Forget what others say. Your blog is never right on the mark for me, but it’s always been a great guide to help me pick up things that might interest me, and to think about things that I might not have thought about in a lot of the anime I watched. I thank you graciously for it all. Keep up the good work!

    On that note, I seem to have an attraction toward pretty generic hero series lately. I wonder why that is.. I’m always looking forward to singing Saint Seiya Omega’s theme song, like I did when I watched the original anime way back when… well, I’m not that old. Just old enough to have found both the anime and manga and liked it all. But the “hero” business really intrigues me as a person.

    • Anca says:

      I haven’t seen the original Saint Seiya, just The Lost Canvas (which was one of the best things I’ve watched in recent years), and Omega’s OP is still stuck in my head. It’s just that good.

      • Juno says:

        I feel really bad about this, but… even though I saw (nearly) every episode of the original series, I never watched even a single movie, nor did I catch Lost Canvas or the more recent Hades arc OVA’s. I’m definitely missing out on a lot, but I don’t know where to find them, and it’s been a while since I’ve seen the series, so I don’t know where to recap myself. ):
        But again, I have never been into the whole “hero” thing until recently, so I’m kinda interested in re-watching the older series completely…

        • Anca says:

          The Lost Canvas is on Bakabt, if that helps.

          It takes place in a distant past and doesn’t really reference the first series as far as I could tell. A couple of things weren’t explained, but I didn’t notice until Omega pointed them out. What I mean to say is you don’t need to know anything about the original series to watch it – it sort of like what Fate/Zero is to Stay Night.

  14. komporrhmwn says:

    Haha, these HxH comments are getting really embarassing.

  15. wicked says:

    Training and people being hot blooded is the saint seiya way,it wouldnt be Saint Seiya other wise. It’d be like Dragonball without people talking most of the episodes while trowing energy balls at each other, would not be Dragonball(it’d be a better anime, but not Dragonball).

    To be fair, though not really mentioned yet, a good amount of Koko’s team are Americans as well, and none of them are blonde or loud mouth assholes.

  16. Jack says:

    @wicked “training” and “hotblooded people” were never the defining characteristics of Saint Seiya – in fact, there was VERY little training because, unlike most shonen manga, SS never had a training arc. The Bronze Saints got stronger through their fights with stronger opponents, not by training. And the only main character that was “hot-blooded” was Seiya himself.

    The reason Omega sucks is because, so far, they’ve failed to reproduce the “gravitas” of the original… The original cast had to go through many sacrifices and hardships to get ANYWHERE. Need to repair your and your friend’s Cloth? Then hand over tree litres of your own blood. Fighthing the Saint with the medusa shield? Then you had better cut your own eyes out, because closing them is not enough. Each victory was won only after the characters had withstood more punishment than humanly possible.

    The new series just feels like a completely generic shonen.

    • wicked says:

      I spoke without watching the omega series, so I may have misspoke. Original saints never “trained” on screen, as they do “level up” in battles that matter, though many battles serves instructional purposes it’s somewhat different from an actual training arc in what you see in Shonen. To me Saint Seiya was always about hotblooded young man fighting, all the main bronze are hot blooded characters at their core, burning with passion in battle, despite their different personalities.

    • Carbine Gammaximon says:

      Wow. now that’s something I’ll choose over generic anytime. See what I’ve been missing!

  17. Andmeuths says:

    I’m quite surprised that Medaka Box manages to stay on your Kalaeidoscope List, to be honest, given how hostile much of the Blogosphere seems to be to the show (beyond those that the read the manga).

    Still, it might be best to regard the first half of the Cour as a mix of character establishment and Filler, especially in light of later content.

    However, the horrifyingly poor action sequences bodes ill for the more substantial stuff later on- unless Gainax is deliberately saving it’s budget for the end of the Cour.

    As for Natsuro Kiseki, I dare say it’s among one of the best Slice of Life/Friendship Series I’ve seen in quite awhile. Of course, it can’t be compared to Apollion, but it’s one tier down in my opinion.

  18. Meow says:

    Why do you compare hxh to the older series as if it were the source material? If youre not enjoying it for that then Drop it :/

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  • Friend
    (Sunday, Oct 26. 2014 05:50 AM)
    @Bam Do you try to make your own game designs from time to time? For fun of course
  • Friend
    (Sunday, Oct 26. 2014 05:49 AM)
    @ninja That sounds really awesome actually. I don’t see many people majoring in things like that and especially not because of a true passion for it. Usually, people go into those studies because they have no other option.
  • k-off
    (Sunday, Oct 26. 2014 05:40 AM)
    @Bam If I was reborn as a person who didn’t have a deep interest in politics, I’m sure I would've gone into graphic design.
  • ninjarealist
    (Sunday, Oct 26. 2014 05:32 AM)
    @Friend I always wanted to be a writer but it took me a while to decide on which major would best suit that goal. After a life-changing study-abroad trip to Tanzania I decided to major in the History of Africa. I also minored in Journalism and Creative Writing, which also obviously tie-in with the writing thing.
  • k-off
    (Sunday, Oct 26. 2014 05:20 AM)
    @Friend I took a microeconomics class in the second year of community college and took interest in economics.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Oct 26. 2014 05:00 AM)
    @Friend: I was always fascinated by graphical design and got into the computer science field with hopes of becoming a game designer. Over Time those aspirations matured to a more reasonable and opportune focus of database design.
  • Friend
    (Sunday, Oct 26. 2014 04:21 AM)
    How did you guys get an interest in the areas you’re studying right now?
  • k-off
    (Sunday, Oct 26. 2014 04:16 AM)
    @Bam “The government doesn’t guarantee anything, it gives opportunities” my ass.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Oct 26. 2014 03:58 AM)
    @Ninja: That’s what you get where education is not free and instead the government makes fat money on student loans. What we have is a culture of debt.
  • ninjarealist
    (Sunday, Oct 26. 2014 03:50 AM)
    @Bam Land of the Free? More like Land of the Nickel and Dime.

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