Posted on 31 January 2013 with categories: Uchuu Kyoudai

Holy crap, Space Brothers, what are you doing to me?

Oh my god, the cliff-hangers just get more and more aggravating with this series, especially now that Hibito’s life is on the line. And here this episode comes and makes things even worse. Not by picking the cheesy route by making things escalate even further. No, Space Brothers is evil. It uses the fact that it takes twenty minutes for a buggy to arrive at his place. And puts in another Brian reference at the end of the episode. Holy crap, you are so evil, space brothers.

Also, I didn’t think it was possible, but it happened: Space Brothers will continue past 50 episodes! In fact, it’s getting moved to a Saturday evening timeslot. That’s prime time there! I don’t know who the producers are who made this possible, but whoever you are: you rock! Heck, this means that there is a very good possibility that this series will end up with a hundred episodes. And it already was one of the best of the airing series when it started! I can’t believe that there will be another series with that kind of length, that isn’t a shounen series.

The disadvantage will be that it’s a very intimidating series to watch. But heck, 100 episodes of Space Brothers, consistently delivering heart-warming and nail-biting episodes. This will make sure that the creators can really take their time. The danger of dragging on of course still remains, but I think that this has been wonderfully balanced so far. Even this episode: the reason why it rocked was because it kept dragging on the fate of our two astronauts. That’s how you make use of slow pacing. This is not like the series is padded for the sake of padding, it really adds something.
Rating: 6/8 (Awesome)

Posted on with categories: From the New World

And suddenly, the lead characters of this series are older than I am. The more time goes on, the rarer this becomes.

And the change in tone is immediately noticeable. The previous arcs were all about the cast growing up, and it explored what would have been expected of them. This to the point that three members of the main cast couldn’t make it. Here though, the cast has grown up. They have jobs and duties now. And with that sorted out, the series can go back to the conflicts between the Queerats again.

Queerats who have become even more dangerous. They’re already numbering almost a million in total. With this I now really get why children are kept away from them. Without cantus… it’s really easy to just get a child killed like that. This episode showed how ruthless some of the battles went on, and with this, we already have guns and advanced military tactics. Not to mention that Squealer is trying really hard to take advantage of the humans in order to get rid of the Giant Hornet Colony.

I really like the politics of it all. I’m normally a big fan of politics anime, and it has been a while since the last good politics series (Hyouge Mono, if I’m not mistaken), and this series also delivers here. The way it stands out is how it puts humans on the high ground: they are gods with their powers and if they tried, they could just wipe out an entire colony of Queerats. With those restrictions, the Queerats have to do battle. I’m also starting to see now why Saki is special: she and Satoru were the first who realized that the Queerats caught one of those snails.

And here is the thing: why did Cantus appear? It’s not like humans have always had their Cantus. It just appeared in the state in which they were as a really advanced civilization. Take it as symbolism as you’d like: too much growth ended up creating something that really bit them in the back. But here is the thing: who says that the same thing won’t happen with the Queerats if they continue to evolve like that? They are currently at the medieval stage and just continue to improve more and more. What if they get so advanced, that at a certain point they also start to develop these cantus powers?
Rating: 5.5/8 (Excellent)

Posted on with categories: Zetsuen no Tempest

Most of the second halves of the series of the past Autumn season have changed into predictable directions: Jojo got more epic, Sakurasou got more dramatic, Psycho Pass started to delve into its setting, Robotics;Notes started to tie its various subplots together. Zetsuen no Tempest though… I did not foresee this change… The show has actually gotten much more light-hearted.

And yet, it still rocks. This episode shined in the details. From various small hints to indicate the building chemistry between the characters, ranging from subtle to hilarious (Samon buying Mahiro some flashy underwear?), to people dressing up that mage of Exodus guy as a superhero and having him destroy the tree of Genesis. This episode was stuffed with those fine moments that just made me smile. The dialogue was just brilliant here.

Best of all was the romance, though. I loved both Exodus-kun making fun of Mahiro’s sister complex (and how everyone knew EXACTLY what he was talking about), as well as Hakaze realizing that she has a crush on Yoshino, complicating Aika’s death even more because she, if she wants to, could have easily killed Aika unconsciously with her Genesis powers. Yes, Hakaze, wanting to couch his earlobes is perfectly normal. Rating: 6/8 (Awesome)

Posted on 30 January 2013 with categories: Jojo's Bizarre Adventure

Shounen series on average have more female fanservice than male, particularly the blatant one. And here you have this series, in which a bunch of oiled up muscular men climb a giant pillar by using only their fingers. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a shounen series with so many yaoi-references…

Anyway, the training arc. Jojo had 33 days to train, at the end of this episode there are only 7 of them left. This was not the best Jojo episode, but as far as training episodes go it again was crazy compared to its peers. Most training arcs start of slow, only to find a major challenge at the end. This episode already threw the characters into a giant death trap. At least it doesn’t take its time as usual, although the end of the episode did not conclude this training arc…

Particularly intersting in this episode was everything that this show did with liquids. Especially that blast of oil was really creative, however what this episode failed to explain was why on earth it was all important. Again, what would have worked was a simple training episode. It rather braks up the momentum for this series to have it last longer.
Rating: 4.5/8 (Good)

Posted on 29 January 2013 with categories: Robotics;Notes

With this episode, it’s time to address the premise of this series: gamers saving the world. With gamers for some strange reason becoming more and more celebrities, it had it coming that there would be more series that would cater to them, resulting in creators finding more and more alaborate ways to somehow put these people in the spotlights. It’s not as bad as the typical loser, but yeah… you probably get what I mean.

Attempts so far failed for me. Kirito from Sword Art Online was just giant wish fulfillment. Accel World, from what I watched of it, looked the same. Btooom was better, but still gave the male lead way too much plot armour. With this, Robotics;Notes has given me the first gamer male lead that I actually like, and I feel is done well.

Either way this was so much better than the examples mentioned above. For one, the entire series doesn’t just revolve around Killballad, but the game is just a small part of the whole conspiracy that’s going on in this series. That means that the series doesn’t automatically revolve around the male lead, but it has to offer more than just him being good at this game. Second of all, it allowed the creators tocreate this weird mish-mash of subplots that somehow managed to link a robots, solar flares, an evil organization, an anime and brainwashing together, and actually get away with it pretty nicely. Sakurasou also has this variety of not just being based on one thing, which really helps for the diversity.

This episode had a climax for the gaming subplot. The robots can only be stopped if you manage to beat a game. It’s a completely crazy security system, but if you take into account that it was made by someone who was mentally screwed while also brainwashed… it’s still silly. And yet they pulled it off by using Kaito’s time slowing powers, which were previously established to be really intense. On top of that, some very convincing romance between him and Frau.

I usually hate love triangles for being pointless, so please: Akiho. Move on. Just… get over your crush. I know that this is unheard of in anime and all, but people can get over love. This series has intelligent writing, so make use of that.
Rating: 5.5/8 (Excellent)

Posted on 28 January 2013 with categories: Psycho Pass

And the system just continues to break down. Previously we were introduced to the rare case in which someone kills whilbe being perfectly mentally healthy. This time the dominators are limited even more by devies that mimic the Psycho Passes of others. I can only see this escalate and get better.

Also kudos to the directors in this episode. First of all, the gore in this series really hits the mark, especially the part where that woman was being beaten to death and how everyone just looked on. It most of all showed how desensitized to problems and violence this society is, and I was really at the edge of my seat. Later, when Makishima started kicking ass I noticed that we’re really talking about Production IG here: it’s been a while since they’ve done a fight scene like that, but I really like the style of trying to be as realistic as possible. That only makes it hurt more.

The one criticism I do have is that everyone is lumped together in this series. I would have liked to see in the minds of those bystanders for example, and why they found it interesting to film that incident. That really was the first time where we really got a good view of what was wrong with the Psycho Pass society, but it’s not in much detail. I’d like some attention on tha in the next few episodes, because it also serves as a good backup for Makishima’s motivations.
Rating: 5.5/8 (Excellent)

Posted on 25 January 2013 with categories: Sakurasou no Pet na Kanojo

Aagh! The sister has returned!

She still sucks for being in love with her brother, but nevertheless I liked this episode a lot. We got introduced to Sorata’s hometown and to his parents, which does explain why he felt at home at Sakurasou so much, since his parents are completely weird. I laughed a lot at their antics in this episode, and especially Sorata’s father rocks.

Furthermore, this episode actually did try to make up for the horrible decision that this series made for allowing the sister to fall in love with her brother: what I had been fearing was that she too would end up in the same school as Sorata so that she’d be even more prevalent in this series, but in this episode it became clear that she probably won’t make the entrance exams. This really helped to put things into perspective, and also hinted that she will move on.

Especially in contrast with the rest of this episode, which focused on doing what you love to do for the one you love. Especially in the case of Misaki and Shiina, but the entire main cast has this. It again was full of little details, for example Misaki as she kept playing with the cat when she was down. That was actually really adorable. I also like this surprising relationship between Jin and the student council president. I did not expect that guy to get so much attention in this series, but the two of them work really well together. Now do the same thing with that one guy who has a crush on Nanami.
Rating: 5.5/8 (Excellent)

Posted on with categories: AKB0048

I hate, hate, hate CG dance sequences. Every single time they’re done, they look incredibly fake and out of place. But even that I can’t fault AKB0048, becaus its CG dance sequences are the best I’ve ever seen. Don’t get me wrong, they still stand out. But they’re kept short and concise, and the dance choreography is actually worth something.

Setting that aside, I still have no clue why this show manages to move me so. I mean, I am a fan of this series and all, but still I loved the end of the episode even thoughit was just the general election for the characters, preceeded by another performance for the idols.

Also, as for the walking boob joke. I have no idea whehter the creators heard me or something, but she showed a totally different and actually quite inspiring side of her in this episode. Heck, I really loved the climax when it was her who got to stand in the spotlights, instead of Chieri or Nagisa. In fact, both of them really had interesting roles in this episode: Nagisa still is in her underdog position, with no signs yet of moving out of it. Chieri meanwhile got to find out first-hand what it feels like to become popular, just because you’ve got influential connections. They’re still there: the subtle bites at the fans of the idols.

By the way, this series also sees its EDs as an extension of the series. The ending of this episode was wonderful because of how the ED extended the big surprise that preceeded it, instead of continuing with the usual ED. This is something that is easy to do, yet most series are too rigid for it. It’s a sign of good production and people using their heads there.
Rating: 6/8 (Awesome)

Posted on 24 January 2013 with categories: Uchuu Kyoudai

Damn you Space Brothers and your cliff-hangers! Seriously, it’s been a while since I’ve watched such addictive ones. You can see them from miles ahed, but just keep hoping that the show will extend a little bit further, or that by some stroke of miracle there is a double episode this week or something. One point of criticism though: if you want to retain tension, don’t name your episodes “80 minutes left to live”. Just sayin’…

And seriously, how little of Mutta has there been during the past two weeks. He only appeared at the end of the episode for a very small, but very significant role. I really like how he instantly realized that Hibito would try to make his way out of the cave. We also saw a completely different Mutta than usual. For the past two weeks, all silliness has been removed from this series. Normally this is like signing a series’ death warrant. Here though, it fleshes out the characters even more. This episode still had me at the edge of my seat from start to finish.

What I also really like about this episode… they revealed that Brian Jay had an older brother. I’m not sure whether it’s my memory being buggy again, or whether they really saved that revelation for this episode. But still: 30 seconds was enough to create yet another really interesting character in this series. As if the series didn’t already have enough of them!
Rating: 6/8 (Awesome)

Posted on 23 January 2013 with categories: From the New World

This was a very interesting episode. The thing is, that it’s clear that it had hardly any budget, yet it did have a couple of very talented animators and artists. This episode threw away a lot of conventions, looked inconsistent, spent its first half on recycled footage, and yet looked really gorgeous.

The new footage showed the cast when they were young children, which contrasted really well with what they went through later. And then came that incredibly weird dream that Saki had afterwards. I can only imagine the symbolism that was in there for the final half of this series, but the thing that caught my attention the most was how it stated that it was no use to bring Mamoru and Maria back. That they were better off dying. I mean, dreams in anime are always with a purpose. What was that dream trying to tell her?

I really liked Maria’s letter and how it was written. But really: the writing in this entire episode was just excellent, how it was entirely focused on Saki’s worries about the loss of her friends; it really went in-depth there. Saki and Satoru, they have lost three really good friends now, and they’re pretty much alone at this point. This episode wasn’t really clear whether or not they will return to the village, or also run away. Either way, it’s going to be really tough for them.
Rating: 5.5/8 (Excellent)

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Kaiser-Eoghan
Still enjoying the sangatsu manga and all the character interactions in this most recent volume.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Quintuplets might be under consideration, dororo is a definite. I don't want to watch revisions , girly airforce or plane thing because of the cgi.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have the first 3 doro episodes downloaded to watch tomorrow, I'll comment on them, I'm giving it a shot because I love Tezuka.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The quintuplets thing is one of those things I would see myself chuckling at for a bit then feeling no obligation to it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The cat thing is probably cute but its too light for me to invest in in the long run.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Regarding this season, I'll be direct, it isn't my thing, I got my fill of Kaguya's manga and all I can out of it, promised neverland, once the escape bit finished just turned into an action series (at least from what I read) lacking a compelling followup hook for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Acca had this odd way of delivering information that made it seem stuff went on between the lines or offscreen, often it worked, sometimes it didn't. Its a show that really picks up after the first couple of episodes and really gets elevated by its revelations, cool setting , art style and opening theme too.
Lenlo
I agree it does that. I think my issue may come with me maybe missing something or just not understanding the series as a whole, and so parts of it were lost on me. I enjoyed the series I would say though
SuperMario
Let me rephrase by saying ACCA ending neatly ties up plot threads for me
Lenlo
I didnt say I didnt like it, just that it wasn't what I expected. It was odd. I think I need time to process it.
SuperMario
@Lenlo: you didn't like ACCA ending? I thought the ending is easily its best part. It's the first few episodes that feel slow for me
Lenlo
Also, just finished ACCA. Man... that was a weird ending. Not sure how I feel about the series, but damn, did it have style.

Also, thanks (?) Wooper.
Lenlo
Lets see... Dororo is good, but I am still lukewarm on it. Kaze Fui is a fantastic carry over from last season. Mob and Neverland of course. Shield Hero, if you want to be part of the latest big craze discussion. Kaguya if you like romance. Ill search some more, but those are off the top of my head.
Anonymous3338351
What are some must-watch anime this season; I'm watching MBP100 and Promised Neverland rn
Vonter
Shield hero looks like it fits with that journey of doing the right thing even though most are against you.
Vonter
You know what it reminds me of. It's kinda like that episode of Malcolm in the Middle. Where the family returns after a trip and find the neighborhood celebrates their absence, since everyone dislikes them. By the end when they make up, all the neighborhood gets bitter with one another because they no longer share a connection of hate with Malcolm's family.
Vonter
Also the undercurrent semblance of looking more like a bad guy or anti hero. Despite him having a good moral compass.
Vonter
SuperMario - I don't felt it was about being defeated or not. I got the feeling it was taking the hit for others. Because since he has high defence he does take the damage, but he does look weary about doing that. And the framework paints him so far more as an underdog than a prodigy.
SuperMario
But does the fact that he’s the greatest defender makes him the one who can’t be defeated? I haven’t watched the latest one though
Vonter
I did like the new episode of Shield Hero. It made me realize there can be stakes in Isekai battles. In both Overlord and Slime I usually space out in the battles because they seem unnecessary outside of animation. It's more interesting if there's a display of wits and using the environment. I also like the protagonist be on the defense and the sidekick as the attacker.
SuperWooper
Here's a "review of one of our own reviewers:"

Lenlo is a pretty cool guy. His taste refreshingly runs the gamut from shounen action series to character-driven period pieces. His use of "Read More" tags and intro paragraphs, though they break the site's house style, give his posts their own signature that his readers likely appreciate. I give Lenlo a 92/100.
SuperWooper
Also, if we're getting pedantic, my post on Kaguya wasn't a "review of one of your own reviewers." It was a review of an anime episode.
SuperWooper
It's "shitty?" Really? None of what we do here is for profit, or for a grade. If I want to alert readers to the fact that I've never read the manga, and choose to do it in a less-than-serious way, I don't think that violates any sacred rule of anime blogging.
Lenlo
@Niello, the technical aspect of Megalo Box is very lacking. Its a character drama with sports, not a sports series with good characters, basically. And yeah the gear makes no sense.
Anonymous3336806
It seems kinda shitty to write a "Proceed with caution!" disclaimer before the review of one of your own reviewers...
Firechick
There are also old school isekai manga such as Red River, From Far Away, Crest of the Royal Family (Which is still going), and a few others.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Animosh: Red River also, but for a while it takes some time to re-gain the addictive quality it has in the beginning. I didn't stick with Yona, it felt like it didn't have any direction on where it was going.
Vonter
Those were different times. And while Isekai, it feels like a different genre. I feel the Isekai of old were also more eastern, given the RPGs of the time were more fairytale like and also several you listed have more of an eastern influence.
Animosh
Yona of the Dawn is also a good example of a series with a politically ambitious female lead, though I wasn't a fan.
Animosh
I forgot how female-oriented early isekai series were. I already mentioned Twelve Kingdoms, but there's also Escaflowne, InuYasha, Rayearth, Fushigi Yugi, Haruka (I've only seen TK though) ... so I guess it's only after the recent revival of the genre that it started targeting men.
Niello
Out of all the sport anime I have watched I think Monkey Turn V is the best so far. Megalobox is pretty good but nothing special imo. I heard that in term of boxing the technical aspect isn't good, though I don't know how true that is. What I personally can't get over is how their gear in reality should just be making people fall over quicker, which shouldn't make the matches more fun.
Niello
I still
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have to stop underestimating these sports shows.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Lenlo is good at convincing me to watch stuff I might not have otherwise watched, I saw ashita no Joe, Kaze and megalobox due to him =)
niello
I should catch up on Kaze, the gap is starting to get quite big.
Lenlo
Im gonna say this every week. How is an anime about running so damn good?
Vonter
I suppose when creating a story one also needs to put some restraint, since as human beings we easily gravitate to certain "tastes."
Vonter
But oh well, I think guys do also have their kinks.
Vonter
@niello - Love might be the hardest emotion to convey. Since even if you put the poses, attitude and the like, the interactions is what sells it. The chemistry as some call it. Sadly in most anime it kinda feels one sided because the male characters are too passive. I like the relation in Shield Hero, but it also underlines the common parental figure girls tend to put.
niello
Later, the author made him accepts the love as a kind of rehab for his bitterness and for the sake of political advantages the girls will gain. So there's this weird atmosphere where the author criticises harem isekai but is writing one himself, although he's certainly trying to make it an unconventional one. At least that's how it is in the web novel. I don't know if they changed it in the LN.
niello
And also to show off. Meanwhile the MC acts like he's not involved because he prioritise the right thing, and also because he's dense toward some of the girls around him (at first) and felt put off by other girls who make bold advances. In essence, he has a harem but he doesn't seek to make one.
niello
@vonter The thing with Shield Hero and harem is that the MC berates how other people who got transported to another world have the idea of forming harems like the LN/manga/anime they know before getting transported. That became the focus of some people instead of what they should be doing like seriously training and preparing for enemy attacks, which they opt for the easy way like it's a game.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - Aside from reincarnating as a baby. Not really. Zettai Karen Children from the author of Ghost Sweeper Mikami, seems like they do. I mean they start very young and later covers have them as teenagers.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Animosh: A slower take on a story is something that has grown on me as I get older.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Animosh: Those scenes in kaze clicked for me this week, but at the same time, that last bit and also the scene in the middle were definately uncharacteristically cheesy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter@Amagi: Mushoku tensei has the lead character grow up throughout it I think?
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think fan interaction by creators, theres something there, listening to fans ideas within reason.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Something that comes to mind here, sometimes i think we the audience might be better at writing the shows than the people doing them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I enjoy explictness but wish it was used less juvenile-ly.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The latest character thats being recurring in my head is a kind of communist or liberation theology soldier that is trying to convert people, while also struggling to keep his highly polarized beliefs in some kind of balance.
SuperMario
@Amagi, tell me about it (having ideas but to lazy to materialize it). Heck, they are mostly lame ideas to begin with
Kaiser-Eoghan
I liked Scums wish .
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its almost always a boring comedy or action show.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or have some kind of anaylsis of why the characters express themselves in certain ways in relationships.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or something depressing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I really really wish more stories involving nudity/sex/fetishes/ecchi/hentai could actually use this kind of thing for a good psychosexual story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I really like it when the conflict has something to do with beliefs or repression aswell.
Amagi
Same here. I mean people are conflicted too, so these characters are actually more relatable. Strangely directors usually think otherwise.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I loved goodbye Lenin, my old German teacher in school was really awesome and took the class to see it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I like conflicted characters.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm also fond of the idea of a villain trying to turn pure hero out of guilt from the past while still longing for his evildoing days and self-hating because of that and also feeling guilty out of enjoying the violence he commits against the villains he's up against. And sees the violence done onto himself as punishment .
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: They just end up as ideas written up rather than stories in my case.
Amagi
@Kaiser: I often feel guilty for being as lazy as I am because I have a lot of ideas and barely do anything with them. I don't even have the "I can't draw it" excuse most other people have. I am just lazy and useless.
Vonter
I've been trying to make a story for quite some time. Is about a special ops agent, that turns into a woman after a failed mission where he lost his friends and comrades. He's on a mission in order to look how to turn back and find redemption for the lost of his friends.
Amagi
OH GOD actually got FGO's Hassan i Sabbah after all with the last few quartz. Suicide prevented, thank you God.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Not a day goes by where I'm not thinking up some wild idea.
Vonter
Kaiser-Eoghan - The best use of incest in a story, is the one you don't see coming, like in King Ooedipus or Old Boy.
Vonter
I think the best case for that story would be using the Yoko Taro method of storytelling. Start by the end and build on how that tragic ending happened. There's a presentation where he explains his method. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OO_d3fwTNPo
Kaiser-Eoghan
I would never ever use incest positively in a story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also, I had a scenario where the hero develops an obsession with the villain, to where killing him is less about personal heroic codes, but curing himself of that obsession.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But the great thing is that the actual thing, relationship never happens.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - That last one just reminds me of erogame about a girl than can't quite get with her crush and relives that same moment several times. Sometimes she reincarnating as man and the crush as a girl. In the end all versions end with rape.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also some of these villains I came up with, they're deaths and rebirths could only occur when it came to settling their specific individual problem. Thus by admitting his/her love for the brother he/she dies.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: I'll add it to my list.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I treated one of my characters like total shit, guy was a girl in his former life, got raped by some alternate version of his brother, got reincarnated a man and as a child killer/abuser, only every time this character committed a crime, they felt they abuse they inflicted on others.
Vonter
Kaiser-Eoghan - Have you read A World I Rule by Tank Guy? That's essentially an isekai about screwing over, what's essentially Eden.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And the true victory and winner is those who lost.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I love the endless cycle of you can't win no matter who you are.
Amagi
@Kaiser: I live for this stuff.
Amagi
@Vonter: I liked that about Tiger and Bunny. I don't want to spoil in case someone is about to watch it. But it contained this element of "something we're looking up to is actually some evil thing/person" and I don't mean the guys they're working for, it was clear from the beginning that those were corrupt.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But at the same time, it isn't like the hero was right either.
Vonter
Amagi - I think in the case of old villains it was caused because those didn't had civilian identities to empathize to the "human".
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also, because I love screwing characters over, after becoming the villain and actually achieving through evil, the perfect good society, even after taking in all the sins of the world and seemingly eliminating the evil inside people, humanity just fucks it all up again and became a monster all for nothing.
Amagi
We also usually don't see the villains having any problems that aren't related to the actual thing they cause. For example losing someone dear to them. Not because heroes killed them or anything, just..so. That's life etc. Making them feel more like persons. Hell even heroes have this problem. Usually when a hero suffers it's caused by the villain. As if the world wasn't more complicated.
Vonter
Also Franken Fran had a very dark and very funny story about a superhero founding out that the organization he's facing wants to conquer the world with charities.
Vonter
Watchmen, Dr. Strangelove, The day the Earth Stood Still kinda put a similar message about needing to be better with each other in order to have a better future.
Amagi
Yes, it's usually too simple. We have a clear hero fraction and a clear fraction of the villain.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*villain
Kaiser-Eoghan
I also like it when the villain isn't actually in co-operation with other bad guys, but theres also a hero, but the hero is marginalized because there are so many differing villaib factions.
Amagi
Even there, in the end it was heavily hinted that people can never bring back gone things. She saw through them and knew they were pretending and that it wasn't real anymore. Think that would happen in the other potential series we came up with too and it cause more character development.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Elementary school up to their mid 30s.
Amagi
Have to think of Goodbye Lenin, kinda. Not exactly that topic but similar. With the mother falling into a coma during GDR time and waking up after the fall of the wall and her family trying to pretent that they're still living in the GDR to not shock her since it could mean that she'd die.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - To what extend watching them grow up? I mean in Dragon Ball we've seen Goku's entire life. In Ashita no Joe we have a big arc before the MC ever gets into an official boxing match. In Rose of Versailles we see a change of ideology over the course of 12 years.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Bad guys idea was to start up so much shit in our world to terrify the people back home.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The guys homeworld was basically one where things we consider evil are good over there.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I remember working with the idea, where a villain brought people back, solely to open the gateway to his homeland through stealing energy from them resulting from psychological turmoil, then broadcasting how terrible humans are back to his homeland, and his people seeing how awful humanity are, then realizing they should stop being bad people.
Amagi
It's why I am always a huge fan of characters (usually, who could have known, villains) who try to resurrect a past decade or something. Like someone trying to build a world or VR space that imitates the 80s because it was the time he grew up in and which he is still missing and want to return back to. Could be the 90s as well or whatever.
Vonter
The paradox with that, is that technically one becomes a tyrant or a monster eventually. Power corrupts the individual. Whose to say those villains didn't start with good intentions?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi; Seeing a characters entire life too, seeing him grow up.
Amagi
@Kaiser: I am often thinking about such a series too. A real coming of age, with the character realising what he had lost or is about to lose, how life changes and him trying to make it stop or escape. Or force the old status quo but realising it isn't possible to maintain.
Amagi
@Vonter: Yeah that's a great compromise. Defeat the villain but maintain his new state, or develope his idea or whatever. Just without the errors the villain made.
Vonter
Oh my, realizing that last one, could make most Isekais more interesting, since there are things those characters can't do by design.
Amagi
And then the MC comes and tells everyone that the old life is good as it is with all its flaws and don't realizes that he is actually lucky enough to not be born into misery or in the middle of some war zone like many others who die and suffer.
Vonter
Villains in the end, take the decisions the hero cannot.
Amagi
It's especially bad when the authors aren't even aware of what they're doing. Like showing that there are characters in the fictional world that get an actual better life with the change the villain brings. Paralysed people being able to move for example or poor outcasts not needing food anymore, in case that the villain forces some VR world and digitalizes people.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Booboo hiss , no revolution is lame. Revolution good, do revolution.
Vonter
Kaiser-Eoghan - Aggretsukko touches a bit on the last two examples.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I still love the idea of people actually benefitting from the terrible things the villain does and actually learning from it and the world becomes a better place because we learned not to repeat the bad guys actions. But the bad guy committed those very bad actions to make us realize that.
Amagi
@Vonter: Yeah I never liked that meta message most stories have that basically boils down to "be happy with everything as it is now and don't try changing it, also, revolutions are evil".
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or where a person attempts to explore becoming something more but ends up just accelerating the breakup/going seperate ways thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
yes vonter, you are giving good examples.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And people growing apart because they've gotten older.
Vonter
@Amagi - Villains have selfish desires, human flaws, and determination. Heroes on those series usually defended the status quo, since that's the only thing they saw as right. And in the meta was to tell the audience how they should behave.
Amagi
Could never get into wimpy characters either. Shy yes, as long as shyness is portrayed seriously and not the typical shy/naive "etooo..ano ne.." harem guy/girl. But I always wondered who can even selfinsert into the typical harem or otome lead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd happily watch a coming of age story which was just about a bunch of guys hanging out, playing videogames, watching films, anime, playing outside and just joking around, very little melodramatic stuff, only on a rare occassion drifting in naturally into the narrative.
Vonter
Ano hana is about reflecting on how the characters grew up.
Amagi
I mean villains are often the oddballs. MCs are too "normal". They're usually the typical guys that maintain the status quo (even if it's flawed), get/want a romantic relation ship and a normal life whereas the villains have ambitions and are often "different" to say it that way. They feel more human to me. Or maybe I am just too weird myself I don't know.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or even a character reflecting on how they've grown up.
Amagi
@Kaiser: As a child it was almost always the villains for me, or villain sidekicks. Probably because writing was more strict back then and there were too many things heroes weren't allowed to think, like or do. Well it's still a problem.
Vonter
Hi Score Girl has a character that reminds me of some aspects I'm not proud of my youth.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or a protaganist realizing all of their past romances were chosen because they thought they had to fit in by having such relationships based on expectations, when really they genuinely don't care about romance.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan Wasn't 30 centimeters per second like that? Welcome to NHK also explores some aspects of the young adult. Kimi ga Nozomu Eien is a soap opera but with adult characters in need of maturing to independent people.
Kaiser-Eoghan
So i can understand wanting to relate to something in fiction.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also none of these stories ever reflected or related to my adolescence.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I want to see a story about someone who is trying to adjust to their mid 20s or 30s after finally realizing that what they thought would never end (what they were familiar with in their youth) is over.
Anonymous3329534
What are the must-watch anime this season?
Kaiser-Eoghan
In alot of cases naturally the underwhelming leads, male or female are romcom/harem/coming of leads...which leads me to ask, I want an dramedy that I can actually relate to.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or it was one of the villains.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The idea of being a military commander, military leader, spy or an emperor or a more clever character appealed to me more.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Nor superpowered characters for the most part.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've probably said this before, and I don't know if this is just from western upbringing, but I never really self-inserted into wimpy characters because I could never imagine myself like that.
Vonter
All these in regards when a girl is the protagonist.
Vonter
1.- They rarely put interesting love interests. 2.- Few times stories aren't about seeking some internal even selfish desires. 3.- In anime at least females get along very easily while I get the impression it's more complicated IRL. 4.- I identify easily the romanticized power fantasy of men but I can't tell if I've seen that thing of women's.
Vonter
It's a dichotomy. Since I've seen both the worst and some of the best female character in manga and anime. Yet I can't shake the feeling female characters have unwritten restrictions to them.
Amagi
@Vonter: The new Promare trailer got me more interested in this. So it seems like the enemies are actually controlled by humans (that..guy/girl(?)). I also feel like the new blonde character will be a traitor or secret endboss or something.
Amagi
@Vonter: I also always had a problem with female characters, be it anime or whatever. Not because of social reasons or anything, I just found them unrelatable. But they got better over the years, especially in the west. Anime always had some series with ambitious female MCs though, it's just that a lot of anime are too selfinserty and these types prefer the safe route and do otome series.
Vonter
This movie is looking sick. It looks like it's using the same type of cel shading as the latest Guilty Gear game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzFFaLB6fHw
Vonter
I've read manga and webcomics with good or bad art, both can have great or very poor writing.
Vonter
I think scores are incredibly more subjective in terms of comics than other mediums. There is just a vast array of qualities, content, and distribution and exposure also makes for some works fall into obscurity.
Kaiser-Eoghan
or huge praise either.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I decided to read that yuri manga Octave, while I'd give it a higher score than they gave it, a myanimelist reviewer was fairly accurate in saying it really boils down to "another drama" but another review said it was "a quick, short and easy to read manga" I think those are reasonable takes, for better or worse this falls it the fine category and isn't really a huge black mark against it
Vonter
Interesting. I mean it's only a matter of time there are several other Isekai mangas that are either full female or gender bended. Also the Spider Isekai is also coming soon.
Animosh
Always nice to see an author reflect on and work on overcoming his limitations.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There was that recent article where sword art's writer brought up how he wrote his female chracters.
Animosh
Japan has a female prime minister in GITS too, although she's just a supporting character. And now that I think about it, the world of SAO's current arc has a female leader - in fact, her all-consuming ambition is basically her #1 trait.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But that is more of a case of female characters in tougher mode roles.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I suppose if I was making a list of female characters that stood out well for me I would put Motoko (ghost in the shell) or Balsa from Moribito.
Animosh
But I can think of some exceptions. Youjo Senki technically has a female lead, and for an older example there's Twelve Kingdoms. And outside of isekai you have ambitious female characters like Shurei (from Saiunkoku Monogatari) or Maude (from ACCA). But it's true that they're relatively rare.
Animosh
It is true that political ambition is a big part of some isekai though. Overlord is an obvious case, and there's also Log Horizon and the Slime series this season. And the MCs of these series are all males. But then, I suppose political power over others is something that is just more likely to appeal to men, especially in patriarchal Japan.
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