Posted on 31 October 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Subete ga F ni Naru

The plot thickens as we are given a little more insight into Dr Magatas room. In this episode we learn quite a few things. That in Magata’s room she has a robot called Michiru which seems to be built with the sole purpose of imitating Magatas voice and to lock the door, and that Dr Magata suffered from DID.(Dissociative Identity Disorder) However I find myself wondering if her case of multiple personalities is genuine as she seems to be far too much in control of it. If anything it looks more like she invented her other personalities as a means of dealing with loneliness. This episode makes clear that none of Magatas other personalities were involved with her parents murder and states that the only one who could kill them was her core personality. However she claims that a doll killed her parents which according to the main characters could suggest that Magata did kill her parents but was forced to by someone else. Other interesting facts was Magatas messages on her computer which suggest that she knew that she was going to die. In murder mystery, usually everything introduced is in someway related to the murder and this one certainly makes it hard to connect the dots. But allow me to speculate a little. There is heavy focus on the director’s relationship with Dr Magata so it’s clear that is related to all this.

The easy explanation would be that the director killed Magata and that would clear up some issues. After all the director has the most access to the facility and from Magata knowing she was going to be killed, she would be more willing to accept it if it was someone she loved that was ending her life. Her interview with Moe would also factor into this as maybe she felt a connection to someone who was also in love with an older man. But if the Director killed Magata, then who killed the Director? Again, a easy assumption but it could have been his wife. Having learned about there relationship she might not have taken to kindly to it and killed the Director. There is a certain disconnect between the two murders. The first was clearly very calculated, and yet the second looked more like a impulse murder with a simple stabbing. But the directors wife lacks the screen time to consider her major factor. But another question is on my mind, is Magata truly dead? The show itself seems reluctant to have the characters examine her body as Moe was interrupted by Souhei before she could get a close look. The first to pronounce her dead, the doctor, did it rather suddenly. He was strangely not put off by the situation and straight away when to check her Pulse. It’s potentially possible that he was told to lie. Who knows, maybe Dr Magata is actually hiding inside the Robot, pretending to be an AI? Well alright, that’s rather ridiculous.

I rather liked Moe’s reaction to the dead bodies. Often in murder mystery the actual effect of death on people is played down so as to not let the drama effect the puzzle of the murder. Still here we have Moe attempting to brush off her shaken up nature and attempt to play detective. Yet her feelings are clear to everyone present. I still find the lack of character development on the others to be detrimental as I want to start pointing fingers but can’t really do that if the side characters have no characterization as of yet. There is also a issue with the shows rather bland presentation as while trying to find screenshots for this episode I found it difficult. While the shows substance is excellent and intriguing, I find that there doesn’t seem to be an effort to make it visually interesting. Counters to that claim would be that dream sequence at the end of this episode or some of the other more surreal moments. But other than these moments it just feels very…static. Though to the animators credit, there is only so much one can do with a story that has characters primarily talking in a room and not much else. But perhaps use of more visual metaphor could make things more dramatic though that runs the risk of ruining the mood of the scene. I may complain about that but I must admit to loving this series, nothing quite gets my brain working on all cylinders like a good murder mystery. Come up with a theory, watch it get shot down, come up with another one. That’s what makes these kinds of stories special.

Posted on 28 October 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, One Punch Man

I feel there are certain anime that upon watching the first episodes, you know that it will be something you are going to remember. This may be far too soon to say but the first two episodes of One Punch Man give me that exact feeling. The whole way through this episode I had a dumb smile on my face and eyes glued to the screen. Saitama using all his godlike power to try and swat a mosquito had me laughing very hard and the action scenes are simply beautiful. I am not the only one with high expectations of One Punch Man as many are hyping it up and claiming it will be the next western breakout hit like Attack on Titan. I acknowledge that could be possible seeing the superhero movie boom is still going strong and One Punch Man is a very western styled show. Of course the cynic within me is still holding back my excitement as I have long seen many anime fall from grace at the halfway point but the source material is strong as well as the studio so the chances of them messing up is quite slim.

One particularly interesting aspect is this show’s tendency to use high profile voice actors for one time roles. The very first villain, Vaccine man, was voiced by the voice actor known for playing Frieza from Dragonball Z and the mosquito girl in this episode was voiced by Miyuki Sawashiro, another great voice actor. The animation seems to be going for fluidity over artistic consistently which does mean that the art gets worst during fights but there is a lot more dynamic movement to make up for it. There are still shortcuts such as Saitama’s punches thrown at the lion king but for once we may have a anime where the best animated action isn’t in the anime opening. As for comedy we have a interesting factor going on. Jokes in the manga that were not that funny work brilliantly in the anime, yet jokes that were hilarious in the manga are lesser in the anime. One particular example is with the mantus enemy, in the manga this guy jumps through the wall and before he can finish introducing himself gets instantly destroyed by Saitama. However in the anime, right before he’s punched they added this “Huh?” and a delay before he’s killed which makes the punchline less funny. It’s small and doesn’t ruin the joke but the change does affect the humor. This extending of jokes is in other examples as well but quite honestly it’s nitpicking.

There is the question of whether Madhouse can keep up the high level of animation from the shows entire run as episode 4 does show signs of the quality slipping. That said it could just be a matter of that episode being given less attention is it is the weakest by far out of the four. Out of criticisms of the show so far the main complaint is that it’s rather formulaic. True at the moment it does seem to be following a monster of the week format but having read the manga I can say this evolves more into an ongoing plot before it gets tiresome. The next episode looks to adapt one of the highlight fights of the series so Madhouse better pull out all the stops.

Posted on with categories: Currently Watching:, Subete ga F ni Naru

Subete certainly isn’t rushing anywhere and that’s alright. The first two episodes looked to be setting up the closed circle and the third a closed room murder. What I like is that we are being clued in on the facts while the characters are so there aren’t any aspects like with Ranpo or Sako were the detective suddenly breaks the Knox commandments and presents evidence that was withheld from the viewer. We already have good ingredients here to ponder. We have two bodies, Dr Magata who had her legs and arms Amputated and was placed on a robot torolly. And the director who was murdered with a knife in the helicopter. Dr Magata was murdered in room that has only one entrance and exit. In the day she was murdered, no one entered or exited her room besides her corpse and The teacher confirmed that only the corpse exited the room and no one else slipped out during the confusion. The system had been programmed to mess up at that exact moment and that system was programmed by Dr Magata herself. Dr Magata herself was also in an adult relationship with the director despite being underage. On top of that there is a clear connection to the murder of Magatas parents 14 years ago which resulted in her getting detained here and this current murder. The pieces are fragmented but allow for speculation, this ladies and gents is true murder mystery. The difference between this and the quick fire no thought required mysteries of other shows is in just how much intelligent writing and misdirection is required to make it work. Because if at any point the author provides too much and gives away the payoff then the story is ruined. It requires a steady stream of information, never revealing the full hand. The big minus of these kind of stories however  is in how they can really only be experienced once as on a rewatch you know all the answers. Still as a great mystery writer Ryoukishi wrote “Tales can be enjoyed twice. First you love them. Then you tear out their guts.”

At the moment my issue with this show is that we haven’t been given much of an introduction to the side characters. Our mains have been given plenty of attention but without much detail on the others on the island it’s difficult to draw up suspects to the murders. I would like the next episodes to flesh out the motives and personalities of the others on the island. Particularly Dr Magatas sister who I currently think is integral to this entire mystery. Our main duo continues to have great chemistry and play off each other wonderfully. What I particularly like is how both of them are on the same level. There is no Watson in these two, both act as blacksmith’s tempering each other’s blades. Whenever one goes along the wrong line of thought the other counters and shows them how they are wrong. It’s a far more interesting power dynamic than having a Watson for Sherlock to explain his thoughts and show how brilliant a detective he is. The method in this show shows what the detectives are thinking while developing their characters and most importantly, showing that they are not all knowing gods of logic. What we have here is two very smart individuals trying to put together a fragmented puzzle and that’s just the way I like it. What is needed for the next episodes is clear, more information, more murders and more character development. Build on the foundation and at the right moment let it all come together in a giant payoff. The factor which will ultimately decide the final quality of Subete ga F ni Naru.

Posted on with categories: Currently Watching:, Young Blackjack

Sorry for the lack of updates but I was hit with a sudden nasty case of Kidney stones which left me in hospital for a few days. I had a Keyhole surgery which left me not in the best shape for a week so I can’t say I was in the right mood to blog. Details of said operation would likely make you cringe and cross your legs if you happen to be a guy. Needless to say I was glad to be knocked out for the procedure. So now it’s time to play catch up.

Blackjack continues to be a solid show. The show does lack subtlety however as characters tend to act in over exaggerated manners and everything is placed in your face. That said it might not need it. The stories themselves are interesting in their own right and the over the top nature tends to lighten up some otherwise deathly serious situations. But what I find to be its most interesting aspect is the moral dilemmas Blackjack faces. Episode 3 in particular is a perfect example of how just because a person is technically doing the right thing, does not mean they are not a terrible person. It really begs the question that if the right thing is being done for the wrong reasons, is it is a good deed? The characters themselves seemed a bit too much of a strawman but I liked the dilemma they placed on Blackjack. Both seemed unwilling to put there own neck in a noose to save a life but when it came to Blackjack they were essentially morally blackmailing him. They forcibly got him involved and placed him in a situation where he must put his profession at stake, all the while demonizing him as if he doesn’t help this deserter then the man would most certainly die. The female student is a perfect example of someone using the moral high ground to inflate their own self worth and ego. A kind of person seen all too often in the planes of the internet.

Placing it during the Vietnam war was also master move as it puts Blackjack in one of the most perilous situations for a doctor to be in. I am honestly surprised with how the series is handling the drug addict doctor’s character. Most of the time this kind of character is a walking moral life lesson to not do drugs, yet he’s actually one of the more morally upstanding characters in the show. Using his experiences with past mistakes to help keep Blackjack on the right path. He also acts as a good trigger to place Blackjack in the hotspot of the Vietnam war with his attempt at redemption. There are the moments of old school such as the old “Oh my god, look at him being so amazing” inner monologues but I really like where this is going and so far Blackjack is delivering on a fairly unique experience.

Posted on 23 October 2015 with categories: Game Reviews

So at a time when when Konami is busy burning every famous gaming franchise it has to the ground and trying to mould the ashes into pachinko machines, I thought now would be a good time to take a look at a Konami title that’s been on my backlog for a while. Suikoden is a turn based RPG with parties of six with 108 recruitable characters. The story is somewhat based on a Chinese novel called “Shui Hu Zhuan” by Shi Naian.

 

The plot details the son of a General in a corrupt empire who is pushed into joining the Liberation rebel army after the court Magician targets his best friend. His friend turns out to be a be a person who has been living for 300 years guarding a powerful rune the Magician wants called the soul eater. Before he’s captured, he entrusts the Rune to you and thus the tale begins to build up the Liberation army, rescue your friend and overthrow the evil empire. The biggest problem with the story is with how weak the villain is. The Imperial army is just obnoxiously evil as many people in it don’t see anything wrong with their obviously wrong actions. Its more moronic than evil in that regard because at least a villain like the Joker from Batman doesn’t try to justify things with logic like “That orphanage attacked me first!”. There are other soldiers who are evil because of a magic black rune but that excuse is just as weak. Windy the Court Magician acts as the main antagonist but her motivations come down to wanting the Rune so she can destroy the world. Near the end of the game her backstory is revealed that people burned down her home and she just wants revenge but for a woman who’s been living hundreds of years that motive is just petty. She doesn’t end up being the last boss, the last boss actually being the king who seems a lot more complex but only gets two scenes in the entire game. A majority of the games story has you traveling to lands to gain new allies and a strange formula happens. Almost every single time you go to ask someone to join, they refuse you saying they don’t want to get involved. Almost immediately after the imperial army shows up and gives them a reason to join. Examples include, a teacher doesn’t want to become your military strategist but when the army show up and take his students hostage to force him to work for them. After rescuing the kids, he joins you. A doctor doesn’t want to become involved but then a General takes him prisoner, you need to rescue him and he joins you then. Or you try to recruit a officer from their army, he says no and at that moment a higher ranking officer tries to rape his wife for his own amusement. Quite honestly its like these guys are trying to help you in their own way and your army builds up from the number of people they tick off. The elephant in the room is why is it that the imperial army never attacks your base because it’s clear that everyone knows about it seeing as every person you recruit goes to it without direction.

 

Suikoden’s game changer for the genre is the ridiculous amount of playable characters and to get a good ending you have to collect them all. It’s because of this I recommend a guide as its easy to just miss one of these guys. There are points where you can get one killed and doom yourself to a bad ending. The large amount of characters does lead to a problem of too much quantity as a majority of them whom you recruit, you will just toss them into the castle to never be used and use only a select few. The only time this changes is when the game forces you to use other characters which can be pace breaking as you are forced to return to the castle and put a character in your party just so you can advance through the story. Your castle headquarters is a great touch as its nice to see it grow as you collect more characters. The characters personalities are fairly one note and don’t really develop much beyond that. One of the most notable characters in the game, Mathiu, is more or less the high point of characterization and mainly because he’s a non playable character you deal with the most. One major problem with the game is one that you can see in the screenshots. Even by PSX standards this isn’t a pretty game, it’s at Super Nintendo standards at best and even that had more alive environments. The area’s are drab and basic, some bordering on ugly. Controlling your character through these places is stiff as you cannot move diagonally and feels restricting. Luckily areas are often very short and you can get through them very quickly.

 

The battle system is pretty standard. You have attack, items, defend and magic. There’s also a unite option that when certain party members are together you can do combination attack like in Chrono Trigger. Magic doesn’t have MP but instead you can only use certain spells a certain number of times. You spell uses come back once resting at an inn and as you level up you get new uses and new spells. Things which really help are the options to bribe enemies and set everyone to attack which makes random battles go by so much faster. It’s a simple but satisfying system. Levelling up in the game is rapid as there are a large cast of playable characters. This makes it easy to get low level characters up to a respectable level as having them in a party in a high level dungeon can have them around the same level as the other characters within a few battles. The mechanics of the game are fairly solid but there are a number of small counter intuitive things that prevent it from being great. For one at the beginning of the game you cannot run. You are forced to walk everywhere and you will only be able to run once one character of your party has a holy Rune equipped. That will allow you to run in towns and areas. However to run on the world map you need a true holy Rune. The Holy Rune can only be got a third into the game and True holy Rune is only on a Character called Stallion. You will pretty much need this Rune the entire game but it means that one member of your party must always have it equipped. There is only one Rune slot per character so that means that character will not be able to use magic or other beneficial runes. The Holy Rune only provides the benefit of dashing and nothing else. When that character is forcefully removed from your party, its back to walking everywhere again. On the matter of runes you can only equip runes at runemaster shops which are in some places and not in others. What this means is that you could have to travel to one town to smith your weapons and then walk all the way to another one to equip runes.

 

Another problem is equipment where each of your six characters can carry a number of items but in order to equip something it needs to be in that character’s inventory which leads to annoyance as you are forced to trade items between characters and make room so you can equip them with the right armour. Considering that you will be getting new characters a lot, you will be fumbling around these menus quite often. Many irritations are solved as you progress and collect characters such as unlocking a world map that lists towns and areas when you recruit a map maker or all the shops being in one area in your castle when you recruit blacksmiths and shopkeepers. But these conveniences only come in the later and till then you will have to deal with numerous annoyances and even when you do get everything some of the things don’t quite go away. For example you will go through this routine a number of times when you return to your castle, first you change characters and for that you need to go to the fourth floor of the castle, talk to someone and remove and add party members, then you go to the vault on the third floor to store items in your inventory to make room for new ones, then go to the second floor to the blacksmiths were you sharpen your weapons. Not enough money? Well then go to the gambler on the first floor and make easy cash. Then go to the first floor, buy equipment and items, move around and equip purchases, go to the runemaster and equip runes and the go to the inn, rest and save. Finally you go to the basement and teleport back into the field. You do most of this every single time you go back to your castle and there’s loading between each floor. This eats away a large amount of your time.

 

The game throws in small changes with army battles and one on one battles, both which boil down to rock,paper,scissors rules. They don’t add much other than dramatic flair but it’s still nice to have something to break up the RPG battles. Music is not really notable, one or two tunes might stick in your mind but nothing that would make you nostalgic in later years. There is a rather odd quirk with the sound however as I noticed that they somehow thought that using a elephant roar sound for a dragon’s roar would go unnoticed and believe me it does not go unnoticed. I had to do a double take when I heard that unsuitable roar the first time. It’s even stranger because the final endboss has a dragon roar that’s normal and why is it they couldn’t use that? The final verdict is a pretty good RPG held down by unintuitive mechanics, lacklustre graphics and a weak story.

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

Subete ga F ni Naru

Short Synopsis: A group of people decide to visit an enigmatic genius girl living on a isolated island.

It’s a little odd to give this episode such high potential when on examination not a lot happened in it. In fact, nothing really happened in it. It was just a series of conversations between our main characters. Still for the duration of this episode I was completely spellbound. Our characters all seem quite interesting as Souhei seems like a man you would never get bored talking to, Shiki comes across as otherworldly and mysterious and Moe has a distinctive observation skills that will no doubt come to play later. Though Moe’s rather obvious attempts to catch the romantic  attention of Souhei are a little detrimental to the atmosphere but she does have good chemistry with him. This looks to be perfect for the style of mystery coming as with just ordinary conversation they can grab your full attention easily. CGI cars excluded the animation looks great and this really looks to be a return to form for a noitamina block of fuji Tv which looked to be going for shows with a more teen demographic instead of mature shows such as this. Admittedly some of the dialogue bushes on being pretentious but this show does present itself as being truly adult in nature. Once the plot really gets moving I think this show could become a great piece of entertainment and food for those like their anime with some sophistication.

Potential: 90%

 

Valkyrie Drive: Mermaid

Short Synopsis: A girl is kidnapped and sent to an island where girls use other girls as weapons by “turning them on”

This was a fascinating watch for me in ways unintended of it’s design. For you see as Valkyrie drive attempted to catch my attention with action and fanservice so blatant that you would wonder why they simply didn’t just go all the way and make it a hentai, I was concerning myself with questions about its setting. For example who decided that the best way of transporting girls to this island would be to jet them though a force field on some kind of rocket vehicle that is destroyed on impact and leaves the girls drifting unconscious in the water? Isn’t that a massive waste of funds to have to destroy one of these likely expensive vehicles every time they want to send a girl to the island? Wouldn’t most of the girls drown before being beached on the shore? Are girls send in pairs of weapon and wielder and who decides which is which? Who was the idiot that decided the weapons need to be activated through sexual foreplay? Why is it that only women can activate these weapons? Meanwhile as I think these questions, Valkyrie drive responds with a “Who cares about that, instead look at these boobies!” to which I reply “I haven’t seen mammaries that grotesque since Clotho from God of War 2.” There really is something wrong with the proportions of these girls that makes them visually alien. This is an experience, to watch a show that’s trying it’s darnedest to erotically entice and yet fail to get the slightest reaction from me. It’s like I am playing Bayonetta all over again, except without the great gameplay. As for story it’s basically along the lines of what you would expect but I really do need to make a point that they are pushing for the fanservice on this one. At one point they brought in a opponent who had a BDSM slave for a weapon and I really didn’t want it to go there but it unfortunately did. One of our main characters is a silent protagonist which outside of RPGs really is an off putting to see in animation. This girl can talk but in situations where talking would help greatly she stays silent. I guess if you want something for other purposes this might be your thing but frankly there are better alternatives. Not recommended.

Potential: 0%

 

Garo: Guren no Tsuki

Short Synopsis: A armoured man fights horrific spirits that possess people.

Somethings not selling me of this. Maybe it’s the similarity to Shingeki no Bahamut: Genesis as the artstyle of the characters are alike and it is the same studio or maybe it’s because this turned out to be a lot less seinien than I expected. In fact you know what this reminded me of? A Tokusatsu show sure enough the live action Garo tv show is indeed a Tokusatsu show. I can’t say much for Tokusatsu shows as I simply don’t have enough experience with them to form a concrete opinion but I believe I went into this show with the wrong expectations. Which could explain why I wasn’t too impressed with the show. The setting is nice but the feel of the story just feels half baked and far too simplistic. One particular thing I noted was that in the beginning the heroes only jumped in after the monsters had devoured all the people and the villain of the episode mainly became a villain because he was mocked but by one of the female heroes which really doesn’t make me want to root for them. The heroes as well don’t have much in lines of personality. I fear this show may become too formulaic and just doesn’t mesh well with me on a personal level. My recommendation is to just watch the episode yourself and decide if you would like to continue with it or not as I find this may be a case of a show just not being to my taste.

Potential: 30%

Posted on 11 October 2015 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Hidan No Aria AA

Short Synopsis: A fangirl wants to be a sidekick to a Detective who does no Detectiving

That was one of the most stupid things I have seen in quite some time. I took me a while to remember just how illogical the setting of Hidan no Aria is. Armoured detectives who don’t do anything related to be being an actual detective, bullet proof sailor uniforms that leave the lower body unprotected, a school dedicated to teaching kids in firearms and using them as a swat team…every aspect of this makes one wonder just how the writer couldn’t see how utterly dumb everything is. You could say it’s intentionally not taking itself seriously but the story presents itself with far too much sincerity. The animators and artists are clearly not putting there A game into this, nor should they. For anyone should have been able to tell that this was just a bankrupt concept. Actually it’s worse than that, it’s a spinoff to a bankrupt concept. Yes, this series isn’t a genuine sequel but rather a spinoff of the likes of the Railgun series is to the Index series. The male lead of the first season is barely present while the focus shifts to Aria and the Aria fangirl who is to be our main lead. Ultimatly a bad move as if there was anyone in the previous show who was at least somewhat interesting, it was the male lead but now all we have to carry the show is a Shana knockoff and a fangirl with a voice and personality that could annoy Buddha. The action scenes present some of the most mind boggling scenarios ranging from Aria dispelling electricity by controlling vibration to make it travel down a cable and vaporize a steel pillar(This isn’t how electricity works.), to a boat chase through a town river that is solved by a sniper shooting a crane on the boat, said crane swinging to the side and ripping off a railing, swinging back with railing and somehow Aria uses this to swing through a window to the Bridge of the ship and manages to perfectly balance herself needlessly between the ships wheel and a radio device. This is just laughably ridiculous and the fact that this show expects me to take this Rie Kugimiya tsundere seriously as some badass professional is just too much. Whatever here that isn’t silly is dull and uninteresting. This is hardly a surprise but this show is not recommended at all. Even you you want to watch something bad, it’s not worth it.

Potential: 0%

 

Ore ga Ojousama Gakkou ni “Shomin Sample” Toshite Gets♥Sareta Ken

Short Synopsis: An average boy is kidnaped and forced to go to a school for rich girls in order to teach them about the everyday world.

I fear Sliver link are making the same mistake that Mangalobe made with “The world god only knows” adaption. Namely adapting almost everything decently but messing up the most crucial aspect, comedy. I know this is based on a light novel but the manga had a certain punch to it. The jokes hit hard and fast which benefited the screwball nature of the situation. But the animes pace is slow with the jokes being too drawn out and lacking impact. With the main feature taken out the rest was a rather mediocre experience which doesn’t look like it’s going to improve. It’s very clear that this got the short end of the stick when it comes to budget, the character designs have gotten a fierce downgrade. One particular causality is the main protagonist whose design makes his character seem much more generic than he actually is. The show feels watered down and I felt slightly disappointed as a result. The lacking budget really hurts the show and you can truly see compromise in it’s presentation. I don’t really think I can recommend this quite as much as I did before because while the end result will likely be a little better than a no effort harem, it won’t quite be as enjoyable as it could have been.

Potential: 15%

 

Taimadou Gakuen 35 Shiken Shoutai

Short Synopsis: An elite inquisitor gets demoted into a squad of misfits tasked with preventing crimes related to magic.

Better than the manga but ultimately a very mediocre experience. The soundtrack is odd with some techno styled synthesizers. The action and animation are pretty decent and it’s seems that this was one of the shows Sliver link decided deserved a better budget than the above Shomin Sample. A pity as this show is fairly trope heavy and while not terrible like Hidan no Aria, lacks anything to make it stand out. The characters so far have dull designs and don’t have much in interesting character traits. The sniper girl Usagi in particular is far too annoying with her being used mainly for fanservice, having an irritating voice and spending most of the episode shouting at other people. There’s the old standard tropes as well like the accidental boob grope and the walking in while someone’s changing trope. It’s something that I think some could enjoy if this kinds of light novel plots are your thing but having experienced dozens of these kinds of stories I found myself getting very bored halfway through the episode. From off hand accounts I have heard that the light novels get better later but right now It just doesn’t have that factor to make me want to keep watching it.

Potential: 10%

Posted on 10 October 2015 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

JK-Meshi!

jkmeshi

Short Synopsis: Three girls banter and teach you how to make Japanese snack food.

As a comedy anime this show is laughably bad and clearly produced on a minimal budget. The characters do not move and the CGI is some of the ugliest I’ve seen. The writing might be even worse…but how is the recipe? Well I gave this one a try and can honestly say that miso soup with fried tomatoes and sesame seeds is delicious. Can I recommend this anime? Absolutely not. But if you’re interested in Japanese cooking you should skip the tv show and check out the recipes.

Potential: 0% (but worth checking out the recipes)

 

Hackadoll

hackadolllone

Short Synopsis: Inept, moefied, androids cause mayhem in their laughable attempts at assisting humans.

So apparently this show is an ad for a Japanese news app, which is ironic, because this is frankly some of the best animation I’ve ever seen in a TV short like this. Of course Trigger are known for front-loading their work, both in terms of animation budget and writing quality, so I’m guardedly optimistic about this show. But the first episode was a lot of fun, both visually and comedically. I will definitely be following this.

Potential: 75%

Komori-san can’t decline 

komori-san

Short Synopsis: A school girl is unable to refuse requests and develops special skills as a result.

I found this show to be lacking in both humor and taste. Which is a shame because I love the art style and the voice actors seem to really be trying. But the comedy is just not very funny and what makes this show truly repellent is the overdone breasts fanservice that borders on fetish material. Maybe someone else will like this style of show but I found it dreadful.

Potential: 15%

Hakone-Chan 

Hakone-chan

Short Synopsis: A shrine deity revives in the form of a child.

This is a pretty bland narrative about a shrine deity and a boy who is of course in unrequited love with the girl of his dreams. But I like how direct the narrative is and how capriciously Hakone-chan behaves. This is nothing ground-breaking but for the most part well-executed. But of course the creators have to go and throw in a stupid fanservice joke, which doesn’t bode well for the future but I think I will keep watching.

Potential: 45%

Magical Somera-Chan 

Somera-Chan

Short Synopsis: Somera and her sister endure random acts of violence.

This is a screwball comedy, which I usually like, but I guess this just isn’t my thing. The animation and voice acting are great and I can’t point to anything specifically that I found problematic about the writing but this just didn’t make me laugh. The again, unlike some of these other comedy shorts, I definitely think this show will have a following. It’s just so bizarre that I think some people are bound to love it.

Potential: 35%

Posted on 8 October 2015 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Sakurako-san no Ashimoto ni wa Shitai ga Umatteiru

Short Synopsis: A boy and a girl who loves bones come across a skeleton on the beach.

One thing I think anime should take note of is that if you plan to have intrinsic photorealistic environments then you should try to blend the character art styles to match said environments. The anime characters of this episode present a disconnect similar to that of the cartoon characters of Who framed Roger Rabbit. While the characters are present, it doesn’t feel like they belong. More like they are standing in front of an overly decorative set. The soundtrack is very bombastic, presenting a score more suitable for a high fantasy adventure rather than a mundane mystery show. It’s far too intrusive, with high pitched violins while the detective is explaining her theory. The story of the episode itself is decent but suffers from over-presentation with heavy visuals to show the explanations of the main detective. My previous assumption about a Sherlock and watson relationship turned out correct and sadly the main character is as bland as his design suggests. Our main girl is mildly interesting but possess far too few likeable traits, and her gimmick of loving bones is already wearing thin. This is a mystery show when essentially solves itself without any viewer speculation which is disappointing. One particular annoying aspect is the show portraying the police as deeply incompetent in order for our main detective to seem more brilliant and I find her deductions to be far too based on assumption. I admit to being overly harsh on this show and there is still some potential as the cast branches out and more interesting mysteries appear, but the first episode is lacking a hook to catch me.

Potential: 40%

 

Dance with Devils

Short Synopsis: A girl gets targeted by a student council of boys and cloaked burglers

Well that’s one way to start an anime. I must admit I rather liked the chanting and the gothic atmosphere of those first two minutes. But then I realized….it’s a musical. A musical reverse harem with supernatural elements. A fascinating combination but I am certainly not the target audience of such a show. Musicals are something I find a little too cheesy for my tastes, I remember having a firm hatred of the songs in disney movies. The second half shows there might be more effort put into this than a regular reverse harem but it still suffers from many of the tropes that plague the genre. Our protagonist is still a blank slate who has a bunch of hunky boys going after her who fall into the usual lineup.This is bound to be better than Diabolik Lovers for those looking for this kind of show but well being the man I am, this doesn’t appeal to me in the slightest.

Potential: 10%

 

Osomatsu-san

Short Synopsis: Old Showa anime characters try to make themselves relevant again.

Our show starts with a black and white cartoon talking about how this show is a return of a anime made over a decade ago and even has one of the characters pointing out that it may be too old for the current generation to enjoy. Certainly hit the nail on the head with that one. So they…turn it into a generic boy band idol anime. So I sat there, clearly seeing that this was a joke and waited for the joke to end. And it didn’t. The joke went on and on to start referencing everything from attack on titan to shounen anime. I got the joke by the first minute and even then I didn’t find it all that funny. I have said many times that anime comedies are something I can’t really appreciate but I feel that there is just far too much “Shout till it’s funny” and “Look at the anime we are referencing” going on for my to consider this good comedy. Admittedly I find the idea of old showa anime characters trying to be relevant by copying popular threads to be somewhat amusing but from what I can tell this isn’t going to be the actual show. Instead the next episode looks to be the genuine first episode. I find the black and white segments of the show to be a prime example of just how far anime has come along and thank god for that because the old Osomatsu show looks to be pretty terrible. I think this is one you have to make up your own mind about, if this first episode gets you laughing then maybe the humor of the rest of the series might be your thing but for me what’s presented hasn’t sold me on this show.

Potential: 20%

Posted on 6 October 2015 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

One Punch Man

Short Synopsis: A superhero is bored because all his fights end with one punch

This one truly is set to be shoe in for one of the hits of the season. The only major concern I had regarding it was whether Madhouse could live up to the art of the manga and they certainly did not disappoint. The animation in this episode was perfect, that last scene with Saitama fighting the subterraneans was a marvel to look at. The art on the other hand may have people torn, I personally have no problem with it but I do think it looks rough at times. But other times it looks beautiful, channeling the style of american comic books more so than anime. The story itself is a dilemma that likely faces every shounen protagonist once they reach the pinnacle of power. Namely the absolute boredom of being so overpowered that no one presents a challenge any more. Saitama’s transformation from salaryman to powerhouse is sudden but it really gets across just how empty he feels with his status of being the strongest. Humor in the episode managed to make me smile, in particular the giant man’s accident and Saitama’s smirk nearly got a chuckle. If you are watching anything this season, chances are this should be on your list.

Potential: 95%

 

Shingeki! Kyojin Chuugakkou

Short Synopsis: Attack on titan without titan’s getting attacked

When the only joke you have is referencing a much better show you could be watching instead of this then maybe you should rethink making an anime out of it. This is pretty terrible and they are milking the Attack on titan name for all it’s worth. Even parodying the famous Opening with there own version but the joke essentially is just referencing Attack on titan scenes. Even the most diehard of fans would find this lacking. If there are any other jokes in this show, it’s of the juvenile kind that a four year old wouldn’t even laugh at.

Potential: 0%

 

Utawarerumono – Itsuwari no Kamen

Short Synopsis: A man finds himself in a land of animal people with no memory

This certainly is taking its time but I appreciate that at least it’s letting the viewer in on the story without being too expository. The humor is hit or miss, it has it’s charm sometimes but can fall flat hard. The amnesia trope is overused but at least with this character he’s not dwelling on it too much. Amnesia characters tend to get caught up in getting their memory back but our main here is shaking it off pretty well which is good because this trope is too common. Animation has some still frames though for the most part it’s a decently animated anime. The setup here is pretty solid and our two mains are fairly likable but the story hasn’t really started yet so it’s still a question on how good this anime will be. From what is presented so far I say this is looking to be a satisfactory watch that should at least keep people entertained in between other shows.

Potential: 55%

CHANGE USERNAME
Anonymous1637770
Also it can be tricky selecting a season sequel since some old series had like 50 to 100 episodes, what counted as a season then?
Anonymous1637770
@Kaiser-Eoghan - It's more common in videogames (especially Capcom) than in other mediums. Megaman 2, RE 2, Street Fighter 2, Dino Crisis 2, Marvel vs. Capcom 2, etc.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Actually in a rarity, a sequel season is better than the first.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Which makes my enjoyment of sangatsu so strange.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I generally do not like game/sports orientated shows.
Kaiser-Eoghan
That you slightlySuper-erMario and superwooper!
Kaiser-Eoghan
And my reaction to the show is such, that I enjoyed it enough to make such a huge pot about it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also I want Akari to be my mom and Hina is adorable without being annoyingly so and Kana Hanazawa is doing a good job voicing her.

And whoever said it is right, the op/ed songs are worth listening to, for once I’m not skipping them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
At this point it feels as if by the end of the series I’ll come off it thinking that I don’t want to say goodbye to these characters.
I don’t think as of just yet it complete lives up to honey and clovers legacy though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I never cared about Harunobu initially, but recent episodes have changed this.
Dull parts of the manga are easier to get through for me in the anime due to Shaft elevating the material with one of the better uses of their visual gimmicks.
Giving the series another chance, even though I won’t fully embrace the humour, it does now and then manage to make me laugh a little.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The bullying arc centering on Hina and the shows treatment of it is better than most anime bullying stories and has provided the most emotionally rewarding aspect of the show.
Characters that are assholes like Kyouko’s boyfriend, Kyouko herself I’m finding somewhat more sympathetic and want to see more to their personal drama.
Kaiser-Eoghan
However I do genuinely think that the series does a good job of allowing dramatic moments to creep up on the viewer, that early scene of Hina crying over her mother, Rei’s family flashbacks, Akari’s concerns about Hina/the stuff with her dad, all the scenes with Kyouko do carry an effective and solid dramatic weight to them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel it starts very strong, making a great first impression, then kind of has these dull moments that make it sort of a slog at times to get through, unfortunately I have no interest in chess/shougi and no knowledge the show tries to give me is going to stick or allow me to embrace that.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Through jumping back and forth between the anime and manga, I can say I have no caught up to where I will now watch March comes like a lion on a weekly basis.
Anonymous1636224
The blood of the innocent will flow without end, mmmmmm this is why I love Inuyashiki
Anonymous1636224
Mmmmmm the suffering of all those innocent people feeding his God boner, this is why I love Inuyashiki
Lenlo
Oh yeah, thats not a knock against it. Just noting they dont *need* much animation
SuperMario
Well, the nature of Mahoutsukai is slow-burned, so it makes sense they focus more on static, quiet moments
Lenlo
Was that blade 2022 thing supposed to be an example? Because I wasnt a fan. It was stylish sure, but difficult to follow.
Lenlo
Maho is a good looking show, I wouldnt call it a great animated show.
Lenlo
The issue for me is, theres just not alot being animated most of the time. Usually its a pretty slow moving anime, so most of its time is talking and still shots. It doesnt need alot of animation, so it doesnt have it.
Lenlo
@Niel, I think Mahoutsukai can have good animation when it wants to. Like the water viel in episode 10 looked good (Though im not sure how much of that was after effects)
Anonymous1635607
uhhh creepy
Anonymous1635589
the blood of the innocent will flow without end, mmmm this is why I love Inuyashiki so much
Amagi
I think the security is the same as here, it's just that Japanese people are less likely to rip stuff (correct me if I am wrong). It seems like ripped anime, manga and so on are basically always uploaded by Americans, Chinese people or someone else.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I was surprised heavens feel was camripped I thought security in japanese theatres was stronger.
Amagi
Yeah it's also screening in Germany, I will watch it in February, together with Heaven's Feel, Mutafukaz, Kimikoe and a few others.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*on Europa cinema
Kaiser-Eoghan
Nanoha new film to screen next February in the US, come in Europa license it for over here dammit....
Kaiser-Eoghan
Did have some down moments though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I guess contrasting Luke with his old self goes some way.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Saw the preview screening of the new star wars, still feel the new trilogy stands inbetween the originals and prequels, fufills its duty as a *** star blockbuster , some genuinely hilarious high camp moments, awful tokenism, Snoke is a shit villain, but two scenes with Luke actually have a pathos to them and I liked the chase/action scenes when they happened. Nobody cares about the acting/dialogue
AidanAK47
But there are times when it goes way too far and you can barely make out what is even supposed to be happening. Or characters go so off model that they are unrecognizable. It can be immersion breaking. Much like uncanny CGI.
AidanAK47
@Niel, I do agree that it's annoying to see people complain about animation when they clearly have no idea what they are talking about. Like those inbetween frame screenshot people. But I will say I appreciate on model characters more so than chaotic movement. When the off model stuff suits the tone of the scene like that blade runner part, then it's fine.
niel
I also don't want to see someone imply visual=animation for the hundredth time. Are people really that ignorant of the technical/artistic aspect of the media they consumed?
niel
It just depends on what works best in given scene and the aesthetic they want to go for. People can complain all they want about off-model stuff, but if they really only want that the they won't be getting nearly as much of those impactful scenes as there are now. So many of the ways people complain about it is really irking to me.
niel
normal/low action scenes is different from being on-model during the action sequences and just the ones that need some extra impact in general. https://youtu.be/rrZk9sSgRyQ?t=6m45s
niel
But that depends on the situation though. And I'd argue that being consistent and on-model during
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter/Niello/Mario: Ideally I want it both ways, fluid animation AND consistent model visuals, all the while never sacrificing choreography.
SuperMario
But really, who am I to say. I'm the dude who prefer beautiful shot composition myself
SuperMario
The same can be said with Shinkai's movies since he always prefers static, beautiful shot that people tend to overlook that his animation is quite poorly handled
Vonter
You're right, but art direction does alleviate limited animation, I mean the old Berserk anime, kinda has a lot of slideshow moments. MahoYome has nice backgrounds, and despite the samey faces, at the very least doesn't come from the same mold as other series. Still cutting corners with chibi segments is was a mistake.
SuperWooper
Is it any wonder that people prefer things to be static/on-model? They want to see characters who look consistent and familiar so they can relate to them.
Nie
MahoYome being the biggest offender of people getting triggered to any kind of statement about the show's animation not being good. And it's absurd because the show's animation really isn't great at all. It's good with distracting people with pretty pictures, but animation-wise it's still mediocre.
Nie
@SuperMario: Not much. Just stuff like "Art is part of the animation weather it's beautiful backgrounds or just amazing looking characters. It's not all about how they move. If it was, CG would be considered great animation" multiple times. I've just been finding myself being replied with these kinds of comment non-stop since the start of the season.
SuperMario
@Niello: What happened exactly, if you don't me asking?
Nielllo
If I hear someone says AMB has good animation one more tie I might actually lose it. It's amazing how people who apparently know nothing about it try to defend this and other people who don't know anything are actually supporting the guy.
Niello
So with Fate Apocrypha episode 22 out, I'm just now learning that people think webgen style is horrible and they prefer static scenes with pretty visual over actual quality animation. WTF. I can't comprehend this. Are casual people who watch animation in general really that oblivious to the art they have been watching?
Lenlo
Berserks Dynasty Warriors style game looked better. Also, Mahoutsukai should be up tonight/tomorrow. Turns out, Christmas is a busy time of year at this job.
Amagi
*worse
Amagi
Especially when you consider how good CGI can be by now, look at Houseki or Kado. But Berserk was the worst thing I saw in years, many scenes felt worst than sequences of PSX games
Amagi
@SuperMario: Same. I love Kon and also consider Paprika's OST as the best. @Lenlo: Me too. I honestly even enjoyed the movies but the new series was atrocious
Lenlo
HIRASAWAAAA! HAAAAAI YOOOOO.
I miss the 90s Berserk.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I was also quite fond of his soundtracks for Berserk. AIIIIIYE FORCES : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NkYYYew8CUI
SuperMario
@Amagi: I'm a big fan of Kon so I've watched everything from his. Even bought a book about his works. About the soundtrack, I listened to them as well but not regularly, compare to pprika OST which I downloaded and listen to a lot
Kaiser-Eoghan
Although not completely a manga, Usagi yojimbo also has an anthro character.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Millennium actress is partially inspired by the actress Setsuko Hara.
Amagi
@Kaiser-Eoghan: The anthro-animal manga is even a topseller as far as I know. Haven't looked into it yet, though. Maybe I will do so.
Amagi
Speaking of it, I am still hoping Dream Machine will happen some day. Kon died believing it would happen
Amagi
@SuperMario: Have you tried the other Kon movies like Millennium Actress once? Thought they were really good and Hirasawa is responsible for the OST there too. Or Paranoia Agent which was (IMO) very good as well https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0nttSKBJ38k (OP)
Niello
Eoghan: Enjoy... ;)
Kaiser-Eoghan
While I haven't read this, its very strange to see a manga about full anthro animal characters: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Beastars
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: So based on that I will try devil lady. Thanks.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: That'd be me who made that post. I thought dororon enma-kun was wonderfully ridiculous and Devilman gorishly entertaining, Shin Mazinger Z was probably some of the most fun I had with an anime, but violence jack took it way too far though so I guess I'm aquainted with nagai's work
Vonter
I don't remember who was looking for something noir in anime. I was looking among several series from Go Nagai. And watched some Devil Lady. I don't remember if noir is exclusively detective stories, but this anime, has those high contrast shadows, eerie music and is shot like some japanese horror movies I've seen. I don't know if it changes along the road but so far it's very suspenseful.
SuperMario
I only know him through his works in Berserk and Paprika but his music never fails to amaze me
Anonymous1626471
@Amagi: Ghost Bridge is my favourite. I just find it very calming. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aeh5aJsxlbw
Amagi
Susumu Hirasawa is one of my favorite musicians/composers. I don't even know what kind of subgenre this is. There aren't any other music groups I know who do similar stuff
Nielllo
@Mario, Already saw that video before.
SuperMario
Check this out... I don't even know what the freaking instrument he's playing, but it's spellbound https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PjalQjAomH0
Niello
Just when I thought Houseki no Kuni took the prize for best animation I was treated with Apocrypha. This week is amazing.
Niello
Big name animators all over. They really threw everything they've got here.
Niello
Woooooah! OMG Apocrypha ep 22 animation is sick! So that's why the animation in the first half of the show is so lackluster and basically just darn awful.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its not entirely odd to bring up Heydrich in relation to the occult either, apparently he was said to be part of some whackjob order.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Hmmm, that girl from Dies irae, Anna Schwegln is aptly named, also shares her name with the last executed person for witchcraft, who was Bavarian German, which i'm told by an Austrian friend were particular right-est leaning politically.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Of course unfortunately its often the opposite that happens, nothing is worse than an ending that ruins everything.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah, how I love being surprised by something. That feeling where you''re watching something shakily held together, simply okay or good, then suddenly in the second half or last stretch your score of it goes massively up.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can kind of understand the wanting to go home and watch something easy mentality instead of challenging but even though I'm guilty of escapism, I'm tired somewhat of "sillier" stuff, its often enjoyable but its get overly reptitive and I wish I could find more philosophical/political/imaginative things.
Amagi
Yeah the show is great because of its theme, the setting and chemistry girls have as well as their (lack of) knowledge about basic human things. Each episode thematizes this in a different way but there isn't much you can talk or say about it when you already explained the topic in detail.
SuperMario
On the other hand, I don't have much to talk about Girls' Last Tour this week. It's still good, but with this episode I feel that I'm running out of concrete thig to say about the show
SuperMario
Haha both Houseki and 3-gatsu have a good showing this week. I have a lot of things to talk about Houseki in particular
Amagi
This week's Houseki is jurassic park
Amagi
*-ati - I think Netflix and so are at least giving a few new impulses which isn't too bad. I don't think the typical anime series will disappear because of that.
Amagi
At least in comparisation
Amagi
I think it's just sad how often I see wonderful series selling 500 BD/DVD or maybe even less. Most series don't sell more than 1500 or so and the rest is usually at ~3000-5000 which is still pretty low.
Amagi
Yeah, it's one of my pro-Netflix arguments as well. Another problem is that anime (not counting manga) only make money through dvd/bd sales since they air at night, whereas Netflix or daytime tv series don't depend on the latter so much and since anime BDs are so expensive the only ones who buy them are the more extreme fans.
AidanAK47
Might be in part due to the workaholic nature of their society that makes escapist fantasy and empty entertainment more appealing than usual. Ultimately these are the people anime is made for so opening up the markets gives more deserving shows a fighting chance.
Though that isn't to say that western taste is perfect either.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, That's part of the reason I think some westernation might be a good thing as from what I seen the Japanese have truly terrible taste in anime. Sales charts from Japan just make me shake my head.
Amagi
God, the preorder anime lists are atricious. The only one that seems to sell acceptable (around 6k) is Mahoyome. Series like Inuyashiki have 80 pre-orders so far, Shuumatsu Shoujo 977. Idol shows sell good of course, including that male/bishounen Idolmaster
AidanAK47
@Anon, I read it but kinda fell out due to it's releases being slow.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: Actually if you check the manga recommendations section, you'll see there is a post about it here.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: Yes, it was interesting to follow a story that dealt with a characters homosexuallity that was outside of the yaoi/yuri mould.
Anonymous1620968
Out of curiosity, has anyone on here read Shimanami Tasogare?
Niello
Where are we up to with Inuyashiki?
Lenlo
Well alright then. Episode 9 out of 11 and that happens. Was not expecting that
Lenlo
Ooo something happen this week? Im about to watch it
Kaiser-Eoghan
It feels just as rushed and awkward in the manga.
Amagi
I noticed this too
AidanAK47
Inuyashiki has balls of steel to pull that in this particular episode number.
Nielllo
Finally got around to reading Helck, and it looks like it's going to go into that pile of good-shounen-that-won't-ever-get-animated right alongside Psyren.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Imagine trying to buy the dvds of the show in public.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Gentle remind that the prism ilya movie is out and subbed.
AidanAK47
Still surprised the second and third seasons got dubbed.
AidanAK47
@Angel, I replied to one of your comments before but the rundown is no official word yet but maybe next year.
Angel
Or no? Someone please tell me!!
Angel
Going to happen?
Angel
Is fate/kaleid liner prisma☆illya 3rei dub
Amagi
I dislike it when manga bait me into reading due to the first chapter and end up being some very generic stuff afterwards. Nobody stays for B if he started something for A, authours should expect that.
Lenlo
Really, Juuni should stick with the 3D. That fight in ep 9 looked pretty good. 3D is clearly what they are good at
AidanAK47
@Niello, It's not Chatango. It's a plugin for wordpress called Wisechat.
SuperMario
@Niello: yeah, Juuni caught me off guard this week. The production of Juuni is unfortunately shaky, but well, strong writing can save the day
Niello
Btw is this chat still Chatango?
Niello
This week episode of Juini is surprisingly good compared to how the show usually is with its backstory. Although the part where Ox tries to explain to Tiger could definitely use some visual buff.
SuperWooper
in the future*
SuperWooper
Pretty cool that Juuni Taisen had that kind of emotional heft this week, though. Might be one of the 2017 shows I sample the in the future.
SuperWooper
I think the occasional comments with an episode title and nothing more come from people who mistake the shoutbox for a search bar.
SuperMario
@Anon1614688: juuni taisen... made me tearing up this week. Honestly didn't expect that. Damn you, Tiger
Anonymous1614688
juuni taisen
Amagi
Had some complaints regarding Children of Whales but the latest two episodes were pretty good.
Amagi
@Anon: You explained it better than me.
Anonymous1614307
Kaiser: I actually have the exact same opinion of Natsume and Mushishi. Both are excellent, but Natsume just does a great job with a small core cast and a very simple premise
Anonymous1614456
who likes naruto
Kaiser-Eoghan
Mushishi does have good stories, but it was always a manga I'd dip in and out of, on and off for years, never marathoning it, wheras Natsume was easier to read several chapters of in one go.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think its because Natsume has more pathos.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*more than
Natsume weirdly ended up becoming this comfort manga for me with a higher consistency rate .
Kaiser-Eoghan
I will state that I hold the terrible opinion that I like Natsume Yujinchou than Mushishi but at the same time completely recognize that Mushishi is probably the more ambitious, better show.
Niello
So it becomes a cycle of "this is an interesting set up" (except that the new Kino isn't even good at that) and then they fucked up or Kino/Shizu fucked them up even more, then move on. Without the emphasis on philosophical nature of the set up they present like in the original Kino, there really isn't that much point to it.
Niello
With the new Kino it's more about messing people up, occassionally observing and hardly ever improving. The anwsers or solutions to the problem they present is never really talked about in a rational way.
SuperMario
@Anon1614318: maybe you should give the old Kino a try. What I don't like most about the new version of Kino is that both Kino and the new guy are sketched as hero. The old Kino manages the tone right as well. There were some really dark tales and most of them thought-provoking. Can't say the same for say...Country of Cooking
Anonymous1614318
I don't know, it might be interesting to actually dig deep into the differences between episodic series with this kind of style to see what works and what doesn't.
Anonymous1614318
I guess it's a matter of the chapter they chose to adapt were not really the better ones but the ones where the protagonist is more of an active role. Not totally against that, but it feels like the protagonist is just OP all the time. At least with Mushishi Ginko isn't able to save everyone all the time.
Anonymous1614318
I guess it's supposed to be more allegorical, but most of the time the allegory is not really meaningful enough. I thought it would be more along the lines of Mushishi, which is kind of similar in setup, but better in most other ways.
Anonymous1614318
What keeps me sticking around are some of the nice background arts and generally pleasant use of color, but admittedly most of the episodes aren't really engaging in a meaningful way. Most of the time its just Kino/Shizu show up, find out town's gimmick, then save the day. I prefer the episodes where the townspeople are more than just flat background characters.
Anonymous1614318
It's interesting to see how this new Kino season is being received from folks who've already watched the original. This is my first real exposure to Kino, and I kind of like it, but even without watching the original, I share many of the same complaints Aidan and most of the others have.
Amagi
I am also kinda sad he's just some 2* servant in fgo, but his power is special and he's physically weak, so it's understandable.
Amagi
And again, Shakespeare is just great but the character is, sadly, kinda wasted here considering how much screentime he has.
Amagi
@Aidan: Yes. Plus, maybe more characterization or background for some servants. The anime would have that time without Sieg and his romance sub plot.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, Those being remove Sieg and more Shakespeare?
Amagi
And man Apocrypha is pretty good but it would be twice as good if it had those two changes Aidan always mentions in the reviews..
Amagi
@Kaiser: I think the male in Kino was a mistake. Having two PoV sounds good, but he's basically just a male Kino, he even looks like her. Someone vastly different would have been way more interesting.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd guarantee that sangatsu no lion would be high up, but FINALLY this weekend I'll be catching up.
Niello
@Kaiser, Ugh my phone gitched. What I meant to say was that background was unexpected. Now I see why you're enjoying CotW though.
Niello
@Kaiser, That's unexpected.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I enjoyed how outright surreal Arakawa was.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: It bothers me that they're stuffing multiple tales into single episodes.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah, excel saga, I wonder what I would think of it now, its been years.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I actually respect Aidan's coverage of it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Niello: Yes that edgy villain kid in COTWs was annoying though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I don't care much for the male character that leads some of the episodes in this new adaptation.
@Niello: Its a non-mainstream shoujo that isn't set in a school, moves at a quick enough pace and has some nice background art/chara design, I grew up on shoujo fantasy manga also so theres that.
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To the surprise of no one, Rat wins the race by breaking in the right place at the right time with the right weapon. This is by no mean a coincidence, because later on we learn about Rat’s real power: “Hundred Paths of Nezumi-chan”, in which he can see 100 various outcomes and thus picking […]

Mahoutsukai no Yome – 10 [We Live and Learn]

Welcome to week 10 of Mahoutsukai! Finally, oh so finally, we have are given some backstory on Elias! Our mysterious male(?) lead gets some explanation. We also get the start of a Chise only arc and finally some more information on Lindel. Lets jump in! As the main focus of this weeks episode, naturally I […]

Dies Irae – 09[A Mother’s Sins]

DIes Irae isn’t making this easy for the anime only watcher, as we get confused montages of Lisa’s backstory and oddly of a character whose relevance doesn’t come till a much later date. I would say it’s rather spoiler-ish if the info wasn’t presented in such a haphazard way that no one could really decode […]

Girls’ Last Tour – 10 [Train – Wavelength – Capture]

Girls’ Last Tour examines the concept of time and space this week, as the girls riding on a lonely moving train. The train design fits right in with this world: a long metal box that functions all by itself and contains many now-dysfunctional robots – corpses of the machines. Since last week we learnt that […]

Kino’s Journey -The Beautiful World- – 10[Kind Country]

Another remake of a story from the old series and while this one is adapted quite well, maybe even arguably better than the old version, it unfortunately lacks the same impact. The main problem comes back to the thing which ultimately holds back this season as a whole, story choice. For you see in the […]

Houseki no Kuni – 10 [Shiro]

This week proves to be the most action-packed episode Houseki has been offering so far and unconventionally, it’s Dia who takes the central stage at facing the most ridiculously overpowered Lunarian Titan to date. Well, I said “unconventionally”, but when the narration and the execution (the camera work, in particular) come together in such neat […]

Fate/Apocrypha – 22[Reunion and Farewell]

Breaking my usual routine today just to give an opinion on this episode but this episode made me feel compelled to get out my opinion. We have another action packed episode with three contestants out of the war and boy did they go out with a bang. Many will notice that the animation for this […]

Inuyashiki – 9 [Shihjuku People]

Welcome to another week of Inuyashiki! This week we have incredible sequences of terror, fearless Directors and death flags! Lets jump in. Obviously, the first thing we need to talk about this week is Hiro. A lot has happened in the few hours since Hiro attacked the Station. Interestingly, yet weirdly, Hiro has garnered a […]

Fate/Apocrypha – 21[Antares Snipe]

When Apocrypha slows down, it’s story shows it’s cracks. But when it’s an action showcase it actually becomes quite entertaining. The characters don’t have the time to be developed but they shine in combat when they clash, sometimes showing parts of themselves the series otherwise doesn’t allow for. Astolfo for one was actually useful for […]

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