Posted on 30 July 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Gate: Thus the JSDF Fought There

Not much to talk about this episode as it was mainly set up to the next. The army’s reputation looks to have risen after driving off a dragon and looks to have caught the attention of our new female character. I was about to sigh when I saw the old anime staple of a bath scene but honestly from a fanservice standpoint it was barren. Alright, there was one shot of the elf girl but frankly it was only a second long and not too gratuitous. It’s nice to seen a anime take the higher road and not just shove in fanservice disregarding the tone of the show for the sake of pandering to otaku. (Looking at you, Ranpo Kitan) the main bulk of the episode was about our three heroines integrating into the army camp. Rory looks to be going with the flow, while mage girl is taking steps to better communicate and understand them. Though elf girl is reserved and avoiding the army. Partly because of her trauma involving the dragon attack on her village and partly from getting thrown into a world so different from her home.

Admittedly when the show shifts to show countries other than Japan discussing the gate its a little one dimensional. Though truth be told if a gate to another world did open then its true that every country would be itching to get their greedy hands on it. Thing is that Japan wouldn’t be the exception in this case, they would be just as greedy. An interesting point did come up in this episode that if the gate is a paradise of bountiful resources then it could lead to Japan taking on the world to hold a monopoly on it. Though I question this as the gate only has a single point of entry not making it the best way to farm resources considering that all resources would need to pass through this one small gateway. That’s going to be one big traffic jam in the making. I know it’s not exactly new for me to say this but the weakest part of the show happens to be the comedy. Itami’s otaku nature is often used for jokes but it’s ultimately the same punchline, that Itami is a massive otaku. The other jokes unrelated to that can have rare moments, such as a general calling a dragon a one headed Ghidorah. The next episode looks to be when the princess of the kingdom and Itami’s squad encounter each other. Sparks are inbound.

Posted on 26 July 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Gakkou Gurashi

Here it is, a flashback to the beginning of the outbreak. In a market as over saturated with zombie media as ours it’s rather hard to do this kind of story without treading on old ground. The start of the outbreak is the focal point of every beginning for a zombie movie. Rarely is it explained and always during an unsuspecting day. In this case a day in the life of Megumi, a teacher at the school. But I think this stands out in how it was presented, namely this episode focused on Megumi’s day. We see her go to work and teach as well as help out students all the while waiting for hell to be unleashed. The thing is that this is likely the way anyone would act in a zombie outbreak. Going about the usual routine while ignoring the likes of Sirens and news reports cause you got your own things to deal with and it’s not as if those things affect you. It’s only when it hits you headfirst that everything comes crashing down. This episode gives good insight into just what our characters were like before the outbreak and from the looks of things Yuki’s pre-apocalypse life wasn’t quite as rosy as her delusions made it out to be. She’s certainly more depressed and from the looks of things, bullied. It’s rather depressingly morbid to see that Yuki is happier after the tragedy and after going insane than she ever was before it all happened.

We didn’t see her go insane yet but it looks like its beginning with her freakout on the roof. We did see however how Kurumi got her shovel and how her killing of the zombified senpai really went down. Some people say this show is censored but from the way I see it these cuts to black are more a stylish choice and they are much better presentation that simply showing gore. In these kinds of things less is more. This show isn’t about going around kicking zombie ass, it’s about these girls running away from a harsh reality. So cutting to black and reaction shots to Kurumi beating her crushes skull in with a shovel does so much more than simply showing it. In the end imagination fills in the blanks better than visuals ever could. One thing I might say is a flaw is when the series moves to portray the Moe side of things such as here where the girls camp together inside the building. Unlike other shows the Moe does have a point which makes it at least tolerable but even so it is fairly standard drivel to put up with.

Speaking of direction, it remains fantastic. I am not sure whether I should attribute that to the director, Masaomi Ando, or to the script/series composer, Norimitsu Kaihou, who just so happens to be the creator of the manga series. That may be just why this series is turning out so well, as we have the original creator on the team to make his story work within a new medium.  A lot of anime suffer from being too constrained to the source material which normally has to use different methods of showcasing action or visuals. The most common case is in Shounen anime where you have characters describing how a attack works during a fight instead of just showing it. But by giving the author creative control over the anime it allows him to better change the story for a visual medium. After all, he created it so naturally he would know the best way to present it, instead of an unrelated director attempted to place their own creative filter over someone else’s work. It’s the little touches in the episode that really rewards those who keep a close eye, one such example being a point on the roof were Megumi just realized that something was wrong and there’s a perfect shot showing the shadow cast from the building covering Megumi while the two other girls remain in the light. This series remains solid though the real turning point will be when Yuki’s imaginary world is broken. I complain that the moe drivel of this series is something bothersome but it’s undeniable the factor that heightens the dark side and prevents this from being just another zombie show. It shall be a dangerous act of juggling two opposites in perfect harmony and keeping that act interesting is something that I truly hope this anime succeeds with.

Posted on 25 July 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Gangsta

I have said it before but these twilight characters rub me the wrong way. This group of superhuman individuals just sticks out like a sore thumb in a grounded setting such as this. They are a Shounen element in a otherwise Seinien show so when they come out and start leaping on rooftops this just becomes another show altogether. While Black Lagoon had its share of superhuman individuals such as Roberta, at least the show recognized that they were indeed completely ridiculous. Here we have a kid wall jumping about the place and the main characters just treat it as another day in the office. It really undermines the skill of our main swordsman when you know that there’s a whole group of people with his level of ability, all of whom got it from some experiment. That’s one of the reasons I would respect a hero like Batman more so than Captain America, one was forged with skill and the other got it handed to him. Woricks photographic memory also runs on the borderline of being supernatural. True a person can have a good memory but you just cannot collect and process information just by flipping through the pages of a book. The father figure to the handymen looks to to be a old Cop which is admittedly a bit of a cliché. The crook that happens to have a mentor/guardian in the police is something that’s seen a bit too often. That said he seems like a decent enough character being kind to them in his own way while not such a morally upstanding person to not take advantage of their skills.

Woricks past suffers from characters who I will for now refer to as forced drama devices. The maids talking trash perfectly within earshot of him and the teachers being obstinate to teaching a boy who has already been taught. I have never been fond of these kinds of characters, they are less people and more the prodding hands of the writer. It’s lazy and merely a means to get the characters and audience to feel what the writer wants them to without putting in the effort to make less one sided characters or situations to do the same. But it at least reveals how the two met though it doesn’t quite explain why he killed his parents. Thought Worick does seem to have some paranoia that maybe he was given a deaf bodyguard on purpose so that he’s more easily killed off. Alex looks to be haunted by her experience with her pimp as it does seem like she started in a similar manner with them as she has with the handymen. It would make sense if they took her in and slowly pushed her towards prostitution. Its nice to see her get some development though I wish there was a bit more to her. At the moment she’s acting as a plot device to introduce and develop other characters so it would be good to see her gain more personality. This new twilight kid isn’t the most interesting, he mostly just comes off as a one time villain. Acting cocky, decimating the minor background characters and soon to be taken out by our main protagonists.

Posted on 24 July 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Gate: Thus the JSDF Fought There

This episode introduces what looks to be the main trio of girls for the cast. A elf girl, a mage girl and a Goth lolita girl with a giant axe. The Goth lolita, otherwise know as the Apostle of a death god, Rory is so far the most interesting of the bunch. Though mainly because the elf girl was unconscious for the majority of the episode and the mage girl is a bit too bland. Rory is one man killing machine with a halberd who is most certainly the type that looks younger than her age. She looks to be having fun with the army as they are oblivious to her true destructive power, she’s rather mischievous in that manner. But there’s a flaw with this episode in how Rory helped to defeat the dragon. When a rocket was shot at the dragon they seen that it would miss and in the span of time it took for the rocket to reach the dragon, Rory jumped out of the back, landed on the roof and threw her halberd faster than a rocket to hit the ground and cause the dragon to stumble. All in about three seconds at most. No matter how incredible this girl may be, that seems downright unfeasible.

Thus the army managed to defeat and drive off the giant monster. When I thought that, I took a moment to ponder just when was the last time I seen that happen. As the army man said, the JSDF has a (Fictional) history of fighting giant monsters. They do not however have a history of winning against giant monsters. Any time the army is brought out to fight some supernatural threat they have always proved to be ineffective and often obliterated. In fiction armies are often brought in to show the depth of the threat by getting destroyed so that the heroes victory is all the more impressive. The most recent example of this I have seen happened to be in the Aquaman DC animated movie when the army are brought in only to be completely useless and are saved by the heroes. So even if they got a little help from Rory. It’s nice to see the army have a win for once. The dragon used a style of CGI which was rather different, were they tried to fuse hand drawn texture with a CGI animation model. Alright, it didn’t quite work as the dragon still looked awkward but well it’s nice to see some experimentation.

What I really liked about this episode was the situation the army was in. They have the resources to easily take down a dragon but due to the delicate nature of bringing excess force too much into enemy territory it leaves them in the position of guiding refugees away from their village. They could only help out in small ways and even with that a lot of people still died. The funeral scene was really well done and from the looks of things they not have a group of people to care for. The next episode looks to be seeing how they integrate with the armies base.

Posted on 21 July 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Gangsta

I really don’t understand Mangalobe’s thinking on this changes, for you see this episode was an adaption of the second chapter in the manga. I don’t see the reason why they felt that they needed to mix around the order of these episodes but I suppose it’s no harm done. To be honest I found this episode to be far more entertaining than the action episode of last week. This episode mainly acted as a character development episode for Worick, where we learn he was abducted by Nicholas after he killed his parents. There definitely feels like a lot missing from the point where Worick and Nicholas became friends but at least it shows just how much the city changed him. The underlying point being that this city is the kind of place that once you become used to it, you will find it difficult to leave. Alex is really playing the same role as Rock in Black Lagoon, being a relatively normal person thrown into a crime filled place. But she shares a strange connection with Worick seeing as both were forced into prostitution.

Their thoughts are quite different however as Alex greatly resents her occupation whereas Worick thinks nothing of it. But one really telling thing was just how angry he got when Nicholas was brought into the conversation. His client seems to desire a less professional relationship while Worick keeps his distance but when she suggested a threesome with Nicholas he got quite irritated with her. And when someone mocked him for being his friend Worick got downright murderous. There’s a disconnect here as with the opening scene it was shown that Nicholas threw him into this world after killing his parents so why is it that Worick regards him so well when by all accounts he has every reason to resent him?

Another part of this episode was Alex and Nicholas making deliveries of what looks to be drugs for these people known as Twilights. A decent way of introducing the main players of the town who will likely play a much bigger part in things to come. It really pointed out how abnormal this town was as Nicholas was having fairly normal conversations as people were getting shot dead in front of him. Seeing Nicholas interact with people in general was quite interesting, as deaf characters in anime are rare. Generally he tries to avoid talking as much as possible hence his character has a lot of body language in the animation. Alex seems at a loss on how to interact with him and it’s actually a flaw on the animators part to have her say in the episode that she was afraid of him yet here she doesn’t seem all that threatened by him. Though Nicholas doesn’t look to like her very much and a lot of his interaction looks like he’s just putting up with her for Woricks sake.Also on the matter of Nicholas it seems the dying girl at the brothel they were delivering drugs to has some connection to him. All and all we have lots of setup this episode and that’s good. Three episodes in and Gangsta is proving to be a solid show, more so than Jormungand the other Black Lagoon styled show. I really need to come up with some sort of term for these kinds of shows as I am sure the Black lagoon comparison is getting worn out.

Posted on 19 July 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Gakkou Gurashi

 

So despite saying I would cover Chaos Dragon in my summer preview, I have decided to cover this instead. The reasons for this is simple, the obvious one being that Chaos Dragon is a poorly written, badly animated and jarring mess of an anime. But the main reason is that after the second episode I tried to seek out the source material to see why Chaos Dragon was such a mess. I actually managed to find it and to my relief its actually pretty good. But I also found out that the anime doesn’t resemble it in the slightest. The difference between the anime and source is night and day. I found out that none of the writers in the game have creative control over it and it was intended to be loosely based. Though loosely based is an understatement, from the looks of things the anime writer took the character designs and the setting and that’s it. So who decided they could twist this collaborative project into their own little script? The answer is Shou Aikawa. Shou Aikawa happens to have the strangest portfolio of work that ranges from really good(Fullmetal alchemist, twelve kingdoms,RahXephon) to horrendously awful(Angel Cop, Eureka Seven Ao, Violence Jack) and unfortunately for us Chaos Dragon fell in the latter category. I don’t know what he’s really thinking by taking this interesting project and turning it into a poor man’s Akame no Kill, especially seeing as Akame no Kill is a downright embarrassing plodding mess of an anime. The fact of the matter is this anime is now destined for failure as when someone attempts to take someone’s idea and twist it into their own, the result is rarely successful. My second choice for covering this season, Ranpo, also put me on the fence with its second episode as the mystery left no room to be solved by the audience and there is odd placement of comedy. And with Kishi at the helm my expectations for this show have dropped. So with that I plan on covering this anime.

The combination of light hearted moe antics and grim apocalyptic horror remains strong with this series. In many ways stronger than the manga and this anime has some truly fantastic direction so far. In particular the way the camera never truly puts a zombie in clear view does heighten the effect of them. This episode only has the girls dealing with one zombie at a time yet the tension is thick throughout the scene. Perhaps because our group of survivors are not the likes of the fully armed, big breasted combat specialists of High School of the Dead, but instead four little girls with a shovel. That is effective horror gentlemen, when your protagonist is at a great disadvantage against a huge threat. Also was lots of little subtext with heavy hints that the teacher is dead and nothing more than a part of Yuki’s delusion and that shovel girl may have killed the zombified girlfriend of her school crush who was lurking outside the barricade. In particular the teacher honestly acts like a part of Yuki’s subconscious, warning her and giving her ideas on how to help the group without breaking her delusion.

The animation at the beginning was very good as well with the peachy flowing movement  as she talked about her crush on her senpai. And proceeded to darken when her senpai was zombified and she had to kill him with a shovel. If you look closely there’s a frame where the boys hard reaches outside of the blacked barred frame giving the impression it’s reaching for you. The opening remains peppy but slight changes have been made and from the looks of it the opening will slowly get more and more demented as the show goes on. Even the meaning of the cheery lyrics have an alternative dark way of being read. Truly I am surprised at just how well this anime is turning out.

Posted on 16 July 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Gate: Thus the JSDF Fought There

This episode was certainly stronger than the first as Itami’s otaku tendencies were cut down and the focus was more on the conflict. The fight itself was brilliantly portrayed as we saw it mainly from the side of the other world. In the beginning when they were marching towards the army they were assured of their victory seeing as they had the bigger numbers. Just seeing the generals fight over who would take the front line so they could claim glory without knowing just what they were up against was amusing indeed. Only the main general found something off about the campaign. Then to see all that self confidence disappear and despair set it. You could really see when they realized the fight was unwinnable when their goal changed from beating the enemy to just hitting them with one arrow.It’s seeing it from their side is what made the episode interesting as to the army this wasn’t anything special but to the other world’s forces it was something akin to hell. The best moment was the general using a bow to fire one arrow in futility while his forces were getting slaughtered by the hundreds, then just reaching out his arms and laughing madly. I actually started to pity them there.

It’s nice that the episode didn’t take sides either as the other world’s moves make sense from a medieval standpoint and it looks to be using the war to solidify his position. Where as the army is simply responding in kind and even on there side there are those seeking to monopolise the new world’s resources. This isn’t an James Cameron’s Avatar situation where one side is clearly good and the other clearly evil. The armies were just doing their jobs and it’s nice to see the army not particularly care that they killed a huge amount of people. In any other show there would be some hamfisted moral of respecting human life shoved down the viewers throats. In a Gundam anime the main character would brood on and on about how war is terrible and killing people is bad. It is true that the protagonist Itami was rather disgusted by the aftermath it seemed more to do with how technological inferior the enemy was rather than some righteous morality. We all know that war is terrible and shouldn’t happen and we should join our hands in peace and harmony and etc, etc, so on and so forth. But sometimes war is just inevitable so its nice to see it just portrayed as it is. Not a giant fireworks festival or a overly sentimental don’t kill message set to the world’s smallest violin. The army was attacked so they responded in kind, they gave the warnings and the enemy marched regardless. That’s just how war works.

Thus after a bloody battle the army sets out to gather intelligence. Though I question how they managed to communicate with the locals and even managed to get a book translating their language to Japanese in a relatively short amount of time. Itami’s otaku-isms are still pulled in as a joke but at least now it’s rarer and at times funny. There’s just something endearing about a army rolling out after a dark battle with the squad leader and another soldier talking about meeting catgirls and waifus. But the story at least knows when to get serious s the group find a village destroyed by a dragon. Some might find it hypocritical that these people lament the deaths of the villagers when they killed far more in the battle but there’s a difference between killing defenseless civilians and armed soldiers. Next time, there be elf girls and dragons.

Posted on 14 July 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Gangsta

As this show continues the Black Lagoon vibes only get stronger but this episode did present an issue. Namely the supernaturally strong dog tag soldiers which can jump ten feet into the air and pull out road signs. In a series that at least started fairly set in reality these elements are somewhat odd though at least still feasible. Anime has always had a rather lax grip on the laws of physics so this isn’t anything new. But when the little girl mentioned these people referred to twilight’s it was a cause for concern. Gangsta has things going for it because it’s a fairly gritty show set within a somewhat realistic setting but if it starts bringing super soldier experiments into the mix that illusion is lost. Another cause for concern is that Mangalobe has skipped ahead in the manga. It’s possible they might come back to it and really what they skipped wasn’t really important but this could be a problem in future episodes if they continue to do this. Mangalobe is fairly liberal with its adaptations and when they start adding their own quirks it’s usually not for the better but instead the worse. The World God only knows anime for instance is where they attempted to stretch two episode arcs into four episode arcs with little success. So the question is whether Mangalobe can stop themselves from changing the story too much.

The fight in this episode was well animated and managed to keep things interesting but something small just broke immersion somewhat. It’s a little thing but Gangsta, much like Black Lagoon, just seems off to be watched in Japanese. It’s no fault of the Japanese voice actors but when you have a American man mocking someone for being from the orient in fluent Japanese something is just wrong. Gangsta just seems like an anime better experienced in English as with the large amount of non Japanese people would likely be speaking English more than Japanese. Subtitle only watchers, sometimes it’s just the better in English. I know that’s hard to accept but its true and I don’t care how many times you try to justify it, Goku’s voice in Japanese is just wrong.(Off topic, I know. But seriously I can’t see Goku’s Japanese voice as anything but bad.) Though I am curious as to how they will handle Nicolas’s voice in English because I think it would be interesting to keep his voice in Japanese for the English dub. Seeing as he speaks very little, requires subtitles to be understood and is from Japan it would be an interesting way of showing his character. On a last note I find it quite amusing that the moral heart of the show happens to be a prostitute, I mean a member of one of the lowest rungs of society happens to be one of the few genuinely morally upstanding people on the show. Though that looks to be changing as she helps the handymen and much like the little girl in this episode she too might become accustomed to wrongdoing.

Posted on 13 July 2015 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Aoharu x Kikanjuu

Short Synopsis. A girl dresses like a boy for some reason and gets in survival games.

The main character of this show confuses me, for she dresses like a boy, acts like a boy but isn’t transexual and wants to be more feminine. I don’t understand it and really when you get mistaken for a boy and forced into a survival game then really it’s your own fault. What’s also contradictory is that a man thinks she’s a boy yet keeps making suggestive advances on the main character despite clearly not being gay. I mean…I just don’t get it. Well anyway there’s not much to see here, we have highly over dramatic fights between people who act like they are having a live or death battle despite using toy BB guns. So really it’s just a show about the main starting to love survival games and trying to cover up the fact that she is a girl to the other team members.My interest is missing cause I generally know how this is all going to go, I have no interest whatsoever in surival games and the characters in this series don’t really interest me. For one the main character I find immensely annoying and while the host fellow doesn’t seem too bad I can’t really see him getting any more interesting. Might be some peoples kind of show but I think I will pass.

Potential: 0%

 

Joukamachi no Dandelion

Short Synopsis: A large royal family with superpowers must play games to decide the heir to the country.

Fairly decent I suppose, nothing really special but nothing that stands out too much. I find these shows the hardest to talk about. It’s not special but it’s not horrible either, just there. It’s a mediocre show that could interest but I find it just doesn’t have enough to get me to care. Though I must criticise that when you have the power to manipulate weight, that does not equal flight. In order to fly you need a means to propel yourself forward. The power of probability must be one of the worst powers as well considering that there are computers that can do the same thing. And the power to remember everything, so sort of a photographic memory? These are some truly useless superpowers. I think this one is something you can check out yourself and decide whether it’s worth continuing but I don’t think it’s something anyone will get really excited about.

Potential: 10%

 

Prison School

Short Synopsis. Five boys are forced into a school prison after trying to peep of girls changing.

There’s physical comedy and then there’s just pure sadism. Seeing this in animation as opposed to manga panel has had a strange effect on me, where the show is trying to make me laugh at these guys situation but instead I find myself getting filled with righteous indignation. While it is true that these guys are perverts with no redeeming value I find that the level of abuse thrown at them is quite potentially lethal and if their wounds didn’t magically heal somehow this would be a very different story. There are other problems with this series besides that, for one the cast of characters are all really unlikeable. The male characters are all desperate, pathetic sex crazed losers and the female characters are all sadistic superficial horrible people. The only exceptions to this is the main lead and what looks to be the main lead’s love interest, though the main lead is only just a small amount of good traits and the girl is fairly naive. The fan service doesn’t work not because of it being censored but rather because the female characters personalities are repulsive to me. Call me sentimental but I prefer girls that look like they would be fun to hang out with and looks aren’t everything. So the comedy is along the lines of gross out humor or sex jokes which I have seen every example under the sun and the fan service is ineffective so what does this show have to offer besides that? Not a lot it so seems. It is possible that maybe just the premise annoys me to the point that it stops me getting any enjoyment out of this. However this does seem like the kind of show that would only appeal to you if you like barrels of fanservice and low brow humor.

Potential: 0%

 

God Eater

Short Synopsis: Humanity lives inside walls and must send out teams to kill all the Titans…um…Aragami I mean.

Ufotable, I respect unconventional choices, I really do. It takes guts to adapt something that’s not really guaranteed to sell however I really wish you could have picked someone much more deserving than this. It’s clear that God Eater doesn’t deserve this kind of treatment, honestly it’s like presenting a five star meal to a hobo. The story is highly generic and the characters are fairly stereotypical with the main lead being the standard personality for this kind of show. But the visuals are certainly something, God eater sports a unique style where the characters all have this shiny look that reminds me of an oil painting. I am still on the fence on whether it looks good or not, as there are times when it looks impressive and other times when it looks just off. In particular I find the shading of characters to be inconsistent and not really adearing to where the light source is coming from. Music and animation are top notch but editing is a bit schizophrenic as some scenes have this jarring jump frame that looks like the film skipping on a projector. It seems to be there for a stylistic reason but I find it just distracting. This anime to me just looks like an experiment from Ufotable and while I think that it is interesting visually, I am afraid that story wise it has no value.

Potential: 30%

Posted on 12 July 2015 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Durarara!! X2 The Second Arc

Short Synopsis: The adventures of the odd people of Ikebukuro

Second verse, same as the first. We still have another cour after this and Durarara doesn’t look to be changing its stripes anytime soon. So after being given a cliffhanger last season with Izaya getting stabbed and lying dying in the street we are straight away greeted by Izaya in a hospital bed, perfectly fine. This my friends is the problem with Durarara, the illusion of consequences. When the show constantly forebodes a looming threat and placing characters in dangerous situations, how can I care when I see Izaya brush off a stab wound to the stomach with a two day stay in a hospital? To me, none of these characters are in any true danger, and yet the show constantly tries to convince you otherwise. None of these characters are going to die, the author loves them too much do if there’s no real danger then what value does these dangerous encounters have. Durarara isn’t trying to put forward a meaning or a message, it’s just wacky people in a wacky place having wacky adventures and while that’s fun for a while there comes a time where I can no longer bring myself to care. Sure I still find the character interactions amusing but outside of that I am more or less watching out of obligation. In hope that maybe at the end of all this there will be true consequence.

Potential: 20%

 

Himouto! Umaru-chan

Short Synopsis: A brother needs to constantly deal with his demanding selfish sister.

There is a particular thing that comedy nowadays needs to take note of. When you make a gag in a comedy show or film, please take into account how that gag reflects the character of the person in the joke. There have been a number of examples of fictional characters who became horrible people just for the sake of comedy. One such example is Alan from the Hangover movies. In the beginning he was a strange but good natured person but when the third movie came around he became someone who didn’t even care when his own father died due to his negligence. Homer Simpson is another casualty as in the beginning he was a flawed person with best interests at heart but slowly became a dangerously impulsive person who never took into account how his actions affected other people. And so finally this brings me to Umaru, the star of this show. However instead of showing this character having good points we are immediately shown just how much of a selfish spoiled brat this person is and how she will go to any lengths to get her way. In another show this character would be a villain or someone pushed to reform but here the show seems to want us to be on her side even when she is treating her brother like a complete doormat. It’s hard for me to enjoy comedy when a lot of it is just mean spirited bullying by our ever so perfect Umaru-chan and the sad fact is that due to this shows nature as a one note gag that Umaru will never get that deserved slap in the face. This is a show about a spoiled brat that always gets her way. Feel free to enjoy.

Potential: 0%

 

Sore ga Seiyuu!

Short Synopsis: Voice actresses are so Kawaii!

My initial impressions remain true, Shirobako already did this and did it better. Plus with Gakkou Gurashi airing this season offering far more than this, this series just seems redundant. It’s like the quota for a standard cute girls doing cute things was not met so they just tossed this anime in. This anime has nothing to offer besides filling up an empty slot in the season lineup.

Potential: 0%

CHANGE USERNAME
Animosh
It consistently looks good, and unlike so many other adaptations, the staff is taking their time instead of rushing through the source material. In the latest episode they even added stuff to flesh out a certain character, and most source readers seem to consider it an improvement!
Animosh
@Amagi: I'm actually pretty impressed with the slime anime. Sure, the story is nothing special, but I didn't expect it to be. As an adaptation, though, it has far exceeded my expectations: I expected a cheap ad for the LN/manga, but the staff is clearly putting a lot of love into this.
panda
Weirdly enough, I liked the character additions to Bleach even though I know that besides the initial two arcs and the Hueco Mundo arc they weren't as interesting.
>weren't as interesting
Okay it was a disaster but still.
panda
I kind of feel the same way about series adding shit tons of characters to the series. Especially when we know that they're not even going to show up as much later in the series. I had this problem with Fairy tail and a lot of other shounen manga.
Amagi
The only exceptions are series that had a bigger cast to begin with and exactly know what to do with them and give every single character specific, human traits. Kaze ga Tsuyoku or Bokura no are examples for that.
Amagi
Sad but not surprising that the Slime isekai is turning into another generic shitfest after a rather strong start. It should have been about Slime and the Dragon alone and those other isekaied humans later as well as world building I honestly can't care about the additions to the team at all. But it only proofs to me that series will always get worse the more characters are joining the team.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It does prompt me to read the manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Furryguy story got too many episodes. I surprisingly enjoyed the time travel one.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Hmmm, Phoneix, the 2004 series is the definition of a mixed bag, the first story gets gritty and bleak in a way that I liked but its the scifi stories I connect with best, the first one for its premise/set up and the second because the last part kind of hit me and seeing Rock, another Tezuka character cameoing in it was kinda cool.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Pluto will be something that'll definately hold up for me and i can see myself actually appreciating it more when I watch the eventual adaptation.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I guess I'm reading Adolf then after watching the phoenix anime.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm thinking more along the lines of wanting a full kare kano adaptation.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: And I'm not sure if my tastes would be the same now.
Anonymous3115199
Hope it gets a decent episode count that does it justice. Can't imagine it being another rushed 1 episode per volume adaptation.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: But I'm not sure if I'll catch the remake.I've already read the manga twice years ago and seen the original anime twice aswell.
Anonymous3115199
Fruits Basket. Now that's a name I've not heard in a long time. And it's a getting a remake next year that covers the whole manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I am old enough to remember watching 2 episodes of mysterious cities of Gold and one of battle of the planets aswell as the 90s gigantor.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I happy to see studios finally going back to adapt stuff that deserves adapting.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have also read angel no oka. Still haven't read Adolf or dororo.
Amagi
I can't wait for the Pluto anime (that was announced like a year ago?).
Kaiser-Eoghan
I won't spoil it, but MW had one cheeky ending that I loved.
Amagi
Well it pretty much is a ripoff of Kimba, I once thought people were joking until acrually googled it. Simba was even meant to be called Kimba at first IIRC.
Kaiser-Eoghan
A manga adaptation of mein kampf exists.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I used to joking argue with people when I was younger online about Disney ripping off Kimba.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've seen all the black Jack stuff, metropolis, I also read Book of human insects, Ayako, apollos song, MW, princess knight and some of ode to kirihito .
Amagi
I wish someone would animate Adolf one day. Or a proper adaption of Buddha.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I bring this up because somebody mentioned Phoenix when talking about Spirit circle.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I must confess to my eternal shame I have never seen Osamu Tezuka's phoenix apart from that one episode with the guy hallucinating that the robot girl was human.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Ah, to be more specific I meant in general.
Lenlo
Im with ya. If your talking about my comment on Ash's breakdown, im not saying I would have prefered to see it. I just think it did its job of disturbing the viewer well.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: I would rather the characters speak explicitly of certain things in banana fish, sometimes seeing everything isn't neccesary.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Perhaps we should race Yagate and Irozuku, see who's faster.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Niello: I've had it on hold for about 3 episodes , I'm waiting to see if it does anything before continuing, pretty show tho'.
Niello
It already passed the half way point but nothing happens in irozuku...nothing.
Amagi
Yeah I jsut read it in the thread. I love grandpa.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Seems like a big moment in Chi no Wadachi.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Someone is uploading translated pages of the new beastars chapter on 4chan.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I am behind on some shows, I'm not uptodate with Irozuku or Yagate.
Kaiser-Eoghan
More specifically, I would like a whole side story about old dude and lizard dude before they met Goblin slayer. Also later part of this episode was stressful, such as Priestess bit. I also like that this show isn't afraid to have its MC get their ass kicked.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There was an anime called ristorante paradiso where all the dudes were old.
Amagi
That reminds me that there actually exists an otome'ish pub VN in which every guy is older than 40. Well I have to admit it's at least setting itself apart from the dozens of male j-rock/pop bishounen harem guys VNs out there. Same with that Pigeon otome VN (yes it's actual pigeons).
Kaiser-Eoghan
Goodness, we could have a reverse harem anime called Amagi-san and the 7 battling ojisans =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I wish the geezer in Goblin slayer would have more to do.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Interesting how I hate certain genres, but when they're put through an exploitation lens I end up liking the genre, probably because it shits all over said genres while cutting out the boring parts.
Amagi
Yeah, same here. I also like it when stories are more mixed regarding age, general look, gender and such which is especially a problem in anime where you usually get 10 characters of the same gender, age and body type. Bonus if it's an idol show and they even have samefaces.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Of course these adult characters can exist outside of a fantasy and also be more relatable to me now, which is also a good thing, in a more serious story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Alot of this has to do with getting older and being aware of that fact, knowing theres a 30/40 something able to do stuff I can't.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I would welcome an age of pensioner-ploitation films.
Amagi
I always enjoyed movies with old guys for example. Not only that, but I usually like it. For various reasons like the stories they have to tell, the nearing death (for very old ones) or a midlife crisis but welp, these movies were common 40 years ago, now it's teens and young adults since these are the demographies that are most likely willing to pay for the cinema or to buy merch.
Amagi
Yeah same here. Modern hollywood movies are way more mainstream than old ones and try to be the lowest common denominator with the most common tropes and stereotypical characters so unless you have more or less the most common taste and way of thinking for whatever reason you won't enjoy it and only get even more bored with every new movie that just feels like the 1000 movies before that.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Wheras I'd delight in anything left field or out of the box, because I love being constantly buzzed or surprised or seeing something do something uncompromising or weird.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*sense of
Kaiser-Eoghan
But I understand that people feel belittled when they watch something they can't make traditional sense or or morally work out .
Kaiser-Eoghan
But I've accepted that the stuff I really really like is going to be alien to a majority. I'd watch a lurid ova or b movie over any popular shounen or most post 80s hollywood films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There would have been a time where I'd thought I was doing it wrong or that people would just think me some kind of hipster or contrarian for not liking popular/mainstream stuff/what everyone in the same room/site likes.
Amagi
Same with movies. I guess in the end it's always about being able to relate. If there is a strange character only certain people can relate to they'll enjoy it while everyone else falls asleep and vice versa with more typical characters. Hell I have seen a ton of non-stop action movies that literally put me to sleep because there was nothing for me to root for nor any great twists to expect.
Amagi
It's strange but whenever people hate a series for being too boring it turns out to be a series I like which is weird because I consider 80% of all existing series boring, including many series most people actually consider exciting and/or enjoyable as hell.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I remember there was a devil may cry anime, the guy subbing it didn't do a very good job but it was an okay extended advert for the game.
Lenlo
The man has also said that if someone would get him the rights to Berserk, he would do that to.
Animosh
Well, you still deserve credit for suggesting the series, because otherwise I wouldn't have even known it existed. :) But yeah, I like that people here are so open-minded. Anime is great and all, but there's plenty to discover outside of it (though to be fair, I'm lagging behind with many of them: following anime seasonally is great for discussion, but it can eat up a lot of time).
SuperMario
@Animosh: don't mention it. I'm glad you enjoy it. I don't take credits in this case since I myself haven't watched it yet. I love it how this community is willing to try other medium and not exclusively anime
Animosh
Really surprised this isn't more well known. Not that there's been much competition, but it's easily the best (western) cartoon I've seen this year.
Animosh
@SuperMario: thanks again for recommending Lastman! I just finished it, and it was a lot of fun. It doesn't have much depth, but it was incredibly entertaining: it just keeps throwing these bizarrely over the top action set-pieces at you without pausing, it oozes style, and its soundtrack is killer (it reminded me a bit of Hotline Miami). And it can be pretty damn funny too. It even ends strongly.
SuperMario
"I swear if I see some nonsense like her not being able to stay “Professional” due to having a boyfriend then I will have to strangle something" --> is that why you had screenshot of kitties up there?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: little sister has a strong chance to be a protag in the last arc. I'm genuinely surprised that Futaba is the main girl in this arc thou
Kaiser-Eoghan
I want to see the little sister looking scared in bunnygirl agrain.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Yay! Sing and eiji are doing something and Ash's freakout while melodramtic and ridiculous was still bleak, learn a bit more about Blanca which is good. Didn't like the goofy bit with yut-lung.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Not intellectually non-intellectual enough for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Bunny-girl has redeemed itself. Also my favourite part of this weeks episode was 7 or 8 minutes before the end .
SuperMario
I mean, just reading that title alone I might check out what this movie is about. lol
SuperMario
Well, I come across an unusual film title today. A Japanese film called "When I Get Home, My Wife Always Pretends to be Dead"
Kaiser-Eoghan
The Lafalle arc (as thematically I probably engaged the most here)and the final arc both elevated this series for me, even though I did enjoy the bit with Vann early on.
I’ve heard people don’t like the ending it hit with me.
Really solid.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Dramatically this even kind of clicked for me and the antagonist surprised me as did twintails girl and bestghosts eventual roles, comedy isn’t exactly funny but I did laugh at points.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Apparently I got third time lucky with Mizukami, because I found this a very fresh take on the re-incarnation genre while actually DOING something worthwhile with it, his pacing/story telling style definitely feels a better fit to me in a short manga like this.
Kaiser-Eoghan
After a degree of indifference to planet with and only liking Biscuit hammers last arc, I ended up approaching Spirit circle expecting to not really have any opinion on it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Just my kind of weird.
Anonymous3093267
sword eyes
SuperMario
Here's another experimental animated short for you, Kaiser, Tango (1981) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lo8O8lYDzIU
SuperMario
@Animosh: yeah the second part was released in VOD earlier this year and I watched it. Prefer the 1st one much better
Vonter
I don't know why, but I thought you were talking about Tomorrowland. That Disney movie that bombed and everyone seemed very lukewarm about. I suppose because I don't know exactly what was the problem with it, didn't see much discussion about it.
Animosh
@SuperMario: I think I've seen World of Tomorrow, but not 100% sure. There's apparently a second part out though, and I definitely haven't seen that!
Animosh
And Umfeld (https://vimeo.com/umfeld) is also worth mentioning. It kind of consists of shorts, it's technically animated (at least in part: it mixes real footage and CGI I think?), and it's definitely weird. It's a very polarizing work though. I love it, but it wouldn't surprise me if most people here hate it.
Animosh
Some other things that came to mind: Tim Burton's "Vincent" (it's stop-motion, but whatever), Loom (https://vimeo.com/24069938) and E-Baby (https://vimeo.com/25435555). And the stop-motion shorts by Lee Hardcastle are pretty fun, if you're in the mood for some needlessly disgusting horror.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I enjoyed embrace of the serpent which has the same director as Birds of passage so I'll keep an eye out for it.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I'm going to see Roma and Birds of Passage this weekend. Really excited for both
Kaiser-Eoghan
As for the she-ra thing well, as I've gotten older I probably have avoided kids stuff more.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I don't want to see tokenism being seen as acceptance when it isn't, it feels that people are putting forth the idea that something is only being/can be accepted because its being portrayed in a tokenistic way.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its fine, obviously to have strong female characters, Ripley in Alien, Sarah Conner in Terminator, awesome....Rey in star wars....no.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think too often shows and films, American ones today, are tokenistic or clicheed with inserting issues, merely just throwing them in or tacking them on for the sake of ticking boxes rather than any earnesty or doing anything.
Anonymous3086853
@SuperMario - I do. Yet at the same time it was a bit outside of my comfort zone, watching something like this considering that (let's be honest) msot shows are men oriented. Even the ones with great female characters. This one despite having tomboyish girls is mainly about these girls with male characters having supporting roles. I suppose that's were the uneasiness lies in my case.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Just got done watching both earlier, his dark humour jives well with me and I liked the concept.
SuperMario
@Kaiser @Animosh: if you haven't seen World of Tomorrow plsssss check it out. I can't recommend it highly enough
SuperMario
@Vonter: Maybe it's a good things that shows for general audiences like this have queer context. Don't you think?
Anonymous3086853
Also because I'm a bit immature, this show is kinda gay. There's a lot of ship baiting moments, one same sex couple in the last episode and rainbows, pastel colors, emasculated male characters and some female crossdressing.
Anonymous3086853
The weakest aspect is that several secondary characters get lost in the shuffle. Kinda like Big Hero 6 in which the team had personalities but just didn't had the time to develop in any meaningful way. Still both the main cast and villains were good and like I say the protagonist and antagonist had strong arcs for a first season.
Anonymous3086853
So I now finished watching She Ra, and it got even better as it was building towards the season's end. Thes strongest aspect is the rivalry between Adora and Catra, the chemistry is very strong, kinda like Optimus and Megatron or Xavier and Magneto. In which both parts seem equally capable and to have mind games with the other.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Oh hey cool, rain town is done by the Penguin hhighway anime movie guy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It looks like I haven't seen Don Hertzfedlts World of tomorrow films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also Prince Achmed and How Wang-Fo Was Saved.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah. yes, thanks animosh, I had a look at Rain town there, I like the style it was done in, it achieves the emotions its trying to convey well without needing dialogue, piano score actually helps rather than hinders.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Glassy ocean, that was another short I watched lately.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Oh inka isha is country doctor.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I know Mario has seen this style on animation, but anyone else see any oil on glass animation?
Kaiser-Eoghan
I actually prefer robot carnival to genius party but liked both.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Zepo, The Pride of Strathmoor were recent animated shorts I watched.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Recently I watched two shorts, death and the mother and pleasures of war.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd say any eastern european short films would be worth anyones time.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm not familiar with rain town or Inaka Isha .
Amagi
Kaiser: Have you seen Inaka Isha from Kafka?
Animosh
In the meanwhile, though, I'd also be very interested in recommendations! The shorts I mentioned are among my favorite animated works, so if you know anything similar, please let me know. :)
Animosh
For western animation I really like the Don Hertzfeldt shorts. And there was this short called "Rain Town" that was really impressively animated. I'm sure there were others, but my long-term memory is pretty lousy. If something else comes to mind I'll let you know.
Animosh
I'm pretty sure you're already going to be familiar with all of my favorites, but here you go: Morimoto's shorts are all fantastic (Dimension Bomb, Beyond, Noiseman Sound Insect, etc), and two others that come to mind are Cat Soup and Kigeki (or Comedy) by Nakazawa. There are also some great collections out there (like the Genius Party ones), but again, you've probably seen those already.
Kaiser-Eoghan
If anyone has any suggestions for weird short animations, I'm looking for excuses to watch some more and I'm in the mood for them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Masky: Mario's youtube link had cgi models of rem and ram in the video.
Masky
I'm confused when was Rem even mentioned
Kaiser-Eoghan
I only ever watched he-man and stuff related to it in passing when I was younger, Conan was more my thing back then.
Kaiser-Eoghan
For so long I'd always referred to she-ra as she-man.
AidanAK47
@Mario, What is this heresy!
....
....Rems always cute.
Anonymous3084910
Hilda is fine, though is very laidback kinda like a young reader's novel. It has its moments but its fantasy with slice-of-life coming of age.
Anonymous3084910
@SuperMario Yeah I know, She Ra is the twin sister of He Man. But strangely it seems Dreamworks may not have the right to those characters. It was a marketing idea trying to bring more girls to that universe but like most girls show from the time it had a very flat depiction of what little girls want to see.
SuperMario
Sorry Aidan, I know it's blasphemy but I have to post here. Enjoy the OP song with the twins https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v9MUjISNm0U&index=4&list=PLU56jBSlcHw8-ol9Hi4lJ0GR0tU6EOf2a
SuperMario
I'll probably check out Hilda. Heard a lot of hypes about that show
SuperMario
@Vonter: I've heard of She-Ra, she's the female counterpart (well, sister) of He-Man (the most powerful man in the universe and the secret identity of Prince Adam). Sounds silly but I'm not even kidding
Vonter
All in all, despite not being a big thing, I think is an enjoyable recommendation. My only nitpick is that it maybe too light hearted for some kinda like above My Little Pony but below something Voltron. Also despite being less childish than the original is still kinda of girly with lots of pastel colors although it balances it a bit having girls being more tomboyish in different degrees.
Vonter
Like with Voltron it amuses me seeing anime tropes being played through western lens. Since I'm a bit hesitant to say that could this count as a harem series despite not being male gaze moments? Also having the most sensible hotspring episode I've seen.
Vonter
In this one this She Ra has pathos. A bit like Korra there's doubt in her role and also a complicated relationship with her rival. I do like the role reversal in the knight's tale this clearly is, in that most roles that would be played by men are played by women in this story. Matriarchy, displacement of both femminine beauty but also empowerment.
Vonter
So I've watched some of the new She Ra from Netflix. So far I'm in, it's not deep but it's quite charismatic. I do like there's more pathos in regards to these characters which pretty much were confined to their archetype to an extreme like the original Power Rangers.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It manages to make watching something like running engaging, when I'd otherwise probably not watch the sport. Also, last week the show ended up popping into my head when I was sitting around doing pretty much nothing and made me think "Ok fuck it, not sitting around doing nothing, going to go out for a run around the block"
Lenlo
I also agree, characters losing in sports is important. They can't start at the top, it makes the series lose meaning
Lenlo
I quite enjoyed Kaze Fui this week. I think your correct that the one who got the reality check was Kurahara, who thought he was the only one able to actually make it. I also thing that he has a competitive streak a mile wide, and might be a little afraid of failure. Doesnt think the team can make it, so why bother
Kaiser-Eoghan
Think I wasn't i the mood for honda-san this week even though I laughed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I like it when sports series actually show the characters you know...actually lose.
Anonymous3083989
Huh, interesting in this episode of Kaze ga that it's Kakeru who got a reality check during the track meet since he was beaten by two other runners. I think we're due for an episode soon where he has to confront his past demons instead of fleeing from them.
Anonymous3083626
@Kaiser-Eoghan - Aging in fiction, I think has more to do with the story than the characters. I mean the jokes about Ash Ketchum, Detective Conan, Archie. The Flinstones tried to make different stories by aging Pebbles and Bam Bam. Or Batman having two Robins graduating into their own heroes. But in the end dynamics change, hence why most cartoons don't age the characters.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Which is why when aging does occur in anime/manga, such as in vinland saga or nanoha for example, its appreciated.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And of course, animated characters often don't age much.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can remember enjoying the simpsons movie back when I watched it, but thinking about it it really was just an extended episode. Really the show peaked with the who shot Mr Burns episode. Catching bits of recent episodes and seeing them use modern stuff while they never age seems weird too.
Amagi
I do think series are allowed to move forward though, I am kinda interested in the Pkmn movie for example. But certain shows should just end, Simpsons for example was a parody of the 90s, it just can't work in a more modern setting IMO.
Amagi
I stopped with the Simpsons when Maude was killed/died, it was just a step in the wrong direction they should have never done and it killed the series for me. I disliked it before already though, I think I noticed the series getting worse since season..9? Or 10, not sure anymore.
Amagi
Anime for Dorohedoro announced.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Therefore ruining the fanservice fun for everybody.
Kaiser-Eoghan
My favourite beach episodes are ones where it rains and they end up not being able to go.
Kaiser-Eoghan
After that it was just the film for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Actually, regarding the simpsons, the episode I stopped on was sometime in the early 2000s, Homer was stuck on some island resort or something.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I suppose it was just as much a case of falling out of watching/playing too and then there being so many episodes/games catchup was impossible. I probably should read the manga someday.
Anonymous3081957
@Kaiser-Eoghan -Kinda like Sponge Bob, Power Rangers or The Simpsons, I can't blame those who move forward, It's imposible for a show to go that long without losing steam. I did check the Sun and Moon first season and while I think the personality and energy is better it doesn't exactly push the concept forward. Still somehow Pokemon is still a phenomenon.
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Thunderbolt Fantasy 2 – 08 [The Song That Dooms Evil]

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Banana Fish – 19 [Ice Palace]

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Planetes – 9 & 10 [Regrets/A Sky of Stardust] – Throwback Thursday

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Thunderbolt Fantasy 2 – 06-07 [A Poisoner’s Pride/ Bewitching Whispers]

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Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru – 7 [Bear Your Fangs at the Summit]

Welcome one and all! This week in Kaze Fui we meet the final boss, Kurahara gets a reality check and our team runs their first track meet! Lets jump in! To start off, I have to say I loved the feel of Kaze Fui this week. Vague, I know, but hear me out. Kaze Fui […]

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Welcome fellow book lovers, to another dip into Honda-San! This week was a bit dull as we learn about the difficulties of stocking, but the second half manages to pick it back up. Lets jump in! So overall this week of Honda-San was pretty disappointing for me. Like usual it had some good gags in […]

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