Posted on 30 September 2016 with categories: Currently Watching:, Mob Psycho 100

It is a remarkably cheap tactic to pull a fake death right before the climax but that aside this acted as a decent finale to Mob Psycho. Through it’s clear that a second season is needed as the story does set up for one and sadly I doubt this has as high a chance of getting one. Well the show gave us the illusion that Reigan was hiding tremendous power only to have it be him borrowing Mob’s power for a moment. This gave Reigan the perfect method to combat the Claw members as with their powers rendered useless Reigan was able to make use of his greatest asset, his ability to talk anyone down. The members of claw that were presented as entities of dark ambition we stripped down and shown how childish their motives were. Even the gas masked leader was reduced to a whining baby in face of Reigans logic.

The battle here was explosive but ultimately Reigan beat claw by breaking down their entire being and showing them just how fragile it really was. In typical shounen it’s par for the course for heroes to force their logic on someone by beating them up. Even Touma from the certain magical index series literally punches his logic into villains until they agree with him.(Made all the more hypocritical when you consider this boy has the life experience of a pillbug) Here Reigan isn’t truly fighting the enemy but rather making them realise just what they are doing. Ultimately it’s the more mature manner of dealing with the problem and a real solution. Enemies beaten up can easily stand by up and continue fighting another day. Enemies stripped of all reason to fight have no reason to return. Batman maybe should start taking notes. I find it strange that the series decided to include a small story about Reigan and Mob hunting a UMA in it’s  final minutes but I suppose it shows that life goes on for Mob.

My overall feelings on Mob Psycho are lukewarm personally. I see that it has merit, it certainly has impressive animation and a interesting story. However I find that it didn’t quite grab me as I thought it should. Perhaps this is how some people felt when watching One Punch Man and it not hitting them as hard as it did with others. Though it that is the case perhaps something like Mob Psycho is more to their tastes? The story isn’t exactly what I would call deep but it holds some interesting food for thought while being entertaining. It subverts a viewer’s expectations  bring a more interesting turn of events to stereotypical shounen plotlines. Characters go through some interesting arcs like some side character previously acting niferous only to come to terms with themselves and become better people. Humor was a hit and miss aspect as usual for me but in this case I think Mob Psycho 100 fell short of the bar when compared to it’s brother. Despite efforts from the team to essentially one up OPM I think Mob Psycho is doomed to live in the shadow cast from it’s more popular sibling. But even then it does stand out when compared to other anime. When checking out ONEs work in the future, Mob will likely be a secondary choice but none the less it will still be a worthwhile watch.

Posted on 29 September 2016 with categories: Berserk(2016), Currently Watching:

I am truly sorry for the delay. I know I know … these excuses are becoming exceedingly homologous of a young student who has been procrastinating on his homework, but I give you my word, for at least what it’s worth, that this is certainly not the case. I have been preoccupied with my pet’s medical condition, and that has taken a toll on my time, wallet, and the ability to focus and attempt to give somewhat of a fair analysis. I thank all of you for your patience and support, and finally will attempt to dive right into the first cour finale, titled ‘Those Who Cling, Those Who Struggle’.

The episode picks up right where the last one left off, with our heroes torch in hand ready to brave the encroaching horror that is engulfing Albion. Down by the courtyard we get one of the last scenes of Luca comforting Nina and once again endangering herself to shelter her. Nina has the bulk of her growth in this very episode, which basically adds up to her accepting her weaknesses and choosing to follow her destiny; wherever that may lead her.

Now we head back over to Guts and company on the ramparts, attempting to ward off the encroaching phantasm. I took extra note of Isidro’s remark regarding the fact that if the miasma is powered by human suffering, then how come the whole world is not already engulfed by such a conglomerate? However, the fact of the matter is that Isidro is still unaware of the significance of the event unfolding at the tower at this particular night; which has rendered the boundary between the physical realm and the astral world especially uncapacious.

Farnese’s whimpering has also become rather grating by this point, but thankfully this will be the turning point for her. What is refreshing though is her newfound admiration for Guts. This follows a trend that has been steadily developing, but as I will explore in my season review this still doesn’t necessarily lead to her becoming a more compelling character in the future. I liked Guts’ remark about not wasting time on prayer, as she will need both of her hands for fighting. This is on the surface referring to the physical gesture of holding hands together during prayer, and also insinuating that any preoccupation with faith and prayer will only detract in a real battle.

At the top of the newly-formed Godhand tower the Egg of the New World is about to hatch. Puck remarks that the mass of souls are all screaming in unison. It is implied that the spirits are all pleading for some form of salvation to come and free them from their hellish existence. Griffith reborn as the Hawk of Light pierces the darkness, and seemingly offers respite to the damned souls; albeit the truth is far more sinister than what meets the eye. Upon the completion of the reincarnation ceremony the tower crumbles and all the ghastly tide retreats back towards the depths of the Vortex.

We get a brief introduction to Schierke, her master Flora, and the female elf Ivalera, as the percussions of the ceremony are felt throughout the land. This is a very significant event in the world of Berserk, and it can be argued that everything since the Eclipse has been leading up to this moment. The new series has also been emphasizing this, by creating a momentum through its pacing that has steadily marched towards this encounter. For such a long build-up and implied preeminence, this moment was handled rather poorly. Any gravity that is present here is mostly achieved through the viewer’s familiarity with the world and the characters, while the contributions of the actual show add up to bot all that much.

The gang’s reunion is interrupted by the appearance of Silat and his Bairaka clansmen. He uses the term “Krishna Sena” to refer to Gut’s party, which upon some research seems to roughly translate to ‘God’s Legion’. This might be a reference to the perceived supernatural circumstances that Silat has come to associate with each of his prior encounters with Guts. We get another action scene, which while short-lasting is still done more competently than some of the previous ones. We get Guts cutting through a whole squad with a single slash, as usual, while Serpico utilizes an interesting triple Remise to neutralize three opponents (this is a fencing move that is achieved by rapid thrusts without withdrawing the sword after each attack). Jerome, Isidro, and even Azan join in the fray, and for a moment we get a glimmer of the harmony that the original Band of the Hawk displayed during the Golden Age.

This continues until Zodd makes his re-entrance. They translated one of the soldier’s remarks regarding Zodd as “Bada”, which I can only assume is a stand-in for the word ‘beast’. Seeing Zodd can only mean one thing: that Griffith is not too far behind, and right on queue- here comes the bride! Guts is about to go full berserker, but seeing the distress in Casca reminds him once again of his priorities, signaling a growth in character that has taken him far past his Black Swordsman days. The Skull Knight also drops in to make this a proper family reunion.

The final section is dedicated to tying up some loose ends, and establishing Guts’ new fellowship. Luca is found to have survived by falling/hiding in a well. This serves as a clear parallel to the old lady who survived the atomic blast in Nagasaki by accidentally tripping into a well, as illustrated by Fred Weiner’s famous 1978 World War II documentary The Unknown War.

We proceed to set up each character’s objective, and this serves as a segue into the inevitable second cour. All in all, this finale was not as bad as I thought it’d be, but to be fair my expectations were very stunted by this point. The whole thing was true to the source material and quite serviceable, but also devoid of much real joy and excitement. Not all of this is the fault of this series however, and I will soon delve into all of that with much more detail in the upcoming season one review. I am already working on that, and aim to make it the most critical and literary analysis of the show as a whole. Thank you for your time and continuous patronage, and stay tuned for a comprehensive look at Berserk 2016.

~Bam~

Posted on 28 September 2016 with categories: Currently Watching:, Orange

We come to an end of orange’s ride. After teasing us for a whole season whether or not history repeats itself, they decide to go with a happy ending route. While I’m not entirely happy with orange as a whole, this double-length final episode succeeds on closing the story in high note. At the very least I’m glad these kids turn out to be alright.

But first let me lay out some issues I have with orange. First, orange decides to jump from the new year eve events to the valentine day, and it doesn’t ring well for me. Orange has always been about progression, be it how far Naho and the group would go to save Kakeru, or about Kakeru’s fight for his inner struggles. Making that time jump kind of defeat that purpose. You could argue that it will end up being the same: Naho struggles, Kakeru ignores the rest, the group tries best to help; but I want to see those conflicts. Another problem I see is the double-length, and for that I blame the series composition staff. The story stretches out too thin in the middle part (we spend an entire episode on Naho’s hangover after Kakeru dated Ueda for example; or the sport events that eat up nearly 2 episodes), and now they have to rush things over for the final episode. I feel no time was wasted on this week’s episode, but the first half could easily be in last week, so we’d have more time for the final climax.

Ueda reappears for the last time, but the show still frames her in a very bias, negative light. It’s hard to care for a character when the creators clearly don’t give a damn about her. That is for me orange at its worst. Ueda is a throwaway role, she will always be a pretty stuck-up bitch that everyone in orange hates, and thus the creators persuade us to hate her too. For a show that relies heavily on characters and their interactions, she ultimately becomes a sore thumb in an otherwise endearing cast.

On Valentine day, Naho desperately wants to give him her chocolate, but finds herself to be consistently pushed away by Kakeru. At long last, she finally confronts him and he tells her what he truly feels. It’s good to see Naho finally cracks the wall Kakeru created all by her sincere efforts. But there’s one thing that I don’t take it very well. She thought that it was her own fault for being insensitive in New Year Eve that things become awkward between the two. When she blames herself for something she clearly isn’t responsible for, it makes me really think if this relationship is healthy. Imagine when they really being together; she’d constantly blame herself or struggles to make Kakeru happy. I’m not sure if Kakeru could make her happy, but I know for a fact that if he keeps his attitude like that he’d never make her happy. Setting up romance when he’s clearly not ready for it is not a good move by a long shot.

Which lead us to the final climax, when the group literally try to save Kakeru the day after the Valentine. This time I pretty much appreciate the sequence through Kakeru’s point of view last week, because we already know how his mom’s unsent message could potentially affect him, thus we understand what are at stake here. The main different in action between Kakeru in his previous timeline and Kakeru now is how important those friends are with him now (well, that and the broken bike). That thought “What would they feel if I die” pretty much sums up the change in Kakeru’s character arc. At least now he has something to live for.

Moreover, he receives the letters from their friends’ older self and I personally think this is the most effective payoff orange pull off narratively. This story is all about regrets, and the only people who still having regrets are their adult counterpart. In their world Kakeru had long gone and there is nothing they could do to change that. That is why their letters to the living Kakeru bring out the most emotional honest orange could ever have achieved. All those heartwarming moments of course is conveyed through a sensitive direction and on-par production values. I agree with most of this episode artistic choice (from using random passerby to highlight the distance between Kakeru and Naho in the beginning, or the only windy sounds during the ‘car crash’) and the production actually gives orange the quality it deserves to have. Everything looks just gorgeous here. If only they could deliver every episode like that.

Now to those who don’t know, there was an announcement that orange will have a theatrical film that will come out at the end of this year. It is a retelling of sort from a perspective of Suwa. While I’m not really that excited to check out the film, I think the sequel could potentially be better than the series. Both because Suwa’s role in this whole affair is more complex than others, but also he’s the most mature and the most observant out of the group. Naho and Kakeru always stuck in their own thoughts that they rarely look around and notice those around them. Suwa aware of all that, and that quality makes him a rather interesting protagonist. Well, I will save my thoughts on orange’s overall quality in the final review, but at least we have this last episode: one of the most effective ending we could ever hope for in orange.

Posted on 27 September 2016 with categories: 91 Days, Currently Watching:

So this is it? This is the grand master plan of Avilio’s brought to full fruition? I guess it is and let me say that it’s certainly a let down. Edmond Dantes Avilio is certainly not as his plan pretty much feels like he was going along with the flow and calling it a plan. I mean there is just so much that could go wrong here, for example what would Avilio have done if Barbero hadn’t found him before entering the room with the Don? What if Ganzo didn’t hinge the entire plan on Avilio? Actually what was up with that Ganzo? Did you really decide to completely trust the guy with the shady eyes who stared at you with murderous intent any chance he got?  I guess you could say I am just irritated with this as with the Avilio has been portrayed through the series I expected his plan to be more interesting than just walking into a booth and shooting someone.

He did mix it up by shooting the Don of the Galassias spurring the family to take out Ganzo and decide to wipe out the Vanettis thus making it that he wasn’t just out to kill the four people of the letter but to destroy the entire Vanetti mafia family. Whether this was Avilio’s agenda from the start or a new decision after the family forced him to kill Corteo is anyone’s guess. Again, the boy doesn’t make his inner workings known but we do see that Corteo’s death did have an effect on him. Seeing hallucinations of his old friend seems overkill but it is nice to see Avilio express something that isn’t his usual impenetrable demeanor.

Vincent brings up the murder of Avilio’s family and it shockingly resembles that of Corteo’s death as he did it in order to prevent the Galassia’s from destroying the Vanetti’s. I say that does make killing Telsa understandable but I don’t get why you had to kill his family along with him. That just seems excessive. Either way I began to think that Avilio wasn’t really aiming for the Vincent’s life when it was revealed that Vincent is already dying. KIlling him now would be a kindness and having it be by the hands of the son of the man he regrets killing would help relieve him of his sins. But why is it that we only learn of this now, right before his death? This is what bugs me about this series the most, it only lays down the groundwork in the episode it becomes relevant.

Vanno was given extra development in the episode where he dies, Ronaldo and Fio’s relationship was only highlighted in the episode he dies and she is put on a bus, Ganzo was only made suspicious in the episode he was outed as the one who wrote the letter and even in this episode the Don of the Galassia’s is introduced for the sole purpose of dying in the exact same episode. You can argue this keeps future episode unpredictable but the problem is that you expect what is happening in the episode itself for whatever character becomes relevant becomes the focal point of the episode. I would prefer it if these things could have been alluded to beforehand and it’s not as if the series couldn’t do that. It spent an episode with Avilio and Nero getting chased by a Mexican terminator, wouldn’t it have been beneficial to cut that out and use the time to flesh out these plot points? I for one would have liked to know that person who got stabbed to death by Avilio and the others because he seemed pretty badass.

The episode ends with Nero finding out secondhand from his father about Avilio’s betrayal and Avilio lying bleeding to death in an alley as they taunt the idea of that being the end for him. Not buying it show, he still has to face off against Nero so he ain’t dying yet. Having played it’s greatest card the final confrontation is the last note to me this show can redeem this lackluster plan. Maybe after having watched the finale DanganRonpa Despair and seeing someone enact a master plan that resulted in a mass genocide and throwing the world into chaos, Avilio’s plan felt a little low key for me to be all that impressed.(On a off note those DanganRonpa animes airing this season really were quite excellent.

I probably should have covered DanganRonpa despair as that really was something.) So as this series draws to a close I think over it and say that it was disappointing but nonetheless a solid show. If Funimation happen to give the dub the Baccano treatment then it could go up in value for having the accents but the story itself is just rather muted and not as exciting as one would expect. it could be on me for expecting something more bombastic rather than methodical but even then I think this series keeps its cards too close to hand for a viewer to get interested in the inner workings. A finale can change a lot but I don’t expect this series to have much left in surprises.

Posted on 26 September 2016 with categories: Currently Watching:, Thunderbolt Fantasy

Now, we just have one episode left, but things get even more intense and crazy by the minute, to the point I don’t really know how they would wrap it up neatly. At the beginning Shang Bu Shuan was mocked by Juan Can Yun that he should be titled “Edgeless Blade”, because his sword-style is all for show and has no edge at all. The sword that Shang Bu Huan is wielding, as it turns out; is not a dull blade after all. Well, to call it a sword would be an exaggeration. He just takes a piece of wood and paints it over, because apparently if he uses a sword with sharp edge he would cut the mountain in half (just from seeing how he cuts a person in half with this piece of wood). The trick is that he’s a master of using energy flow (Qi) to form force, so even a piece of wood (or his more extreme examples: a cloth or hair) can split flesh if using the right force into it. If we put it that way it feels much more like a martials art than a swordfight, but nevertheless it remains awesome.

After this episode, I’m more convinced that Shang Bu Huan might actually been in the demon realm already. He’s already in doubts that the demon Yao Tu Li was in the demon realm, which pretty much set up nicely to the last half’s development. If the demon Yao Tu Li isn’t in the demon realm, and it has disappeared from the human realm for nearly 200 years; where has it been then? The answer is he has been sleeping under the seal of Tiang Xing Jian sword. The nature of that sacred sword is become much clearer in this episode, that sword is never meant to kill the demon god (because the demon gods can’t be killed, when it’s destroyed it’ll transform to other forms), or send them back to demon realm (because then they will cause havoc again the minutes they come back to human realm), but to put the demon to ‘eternity’ sleep. I can understand that rationale, but I doubt this is the only function that sacred sword Tiang Xing Jian can perform. I’s amused to see how this most powerful sword be handled by Shang Bu Huan (famously known as the man who doesn’t need sword). That moment will come my friends.

Now we head to the clash between demon and human, which I admit that I had never thought it would turn out that way. Xing Hai once again steals the episode’s best moments (or is it just me? I simply can’t get enough of her) as it is revealed that she goes along the plan of stealing the guard back, just so that they can release the demon Yao Tu Li. She even singlehanded strangled her partner Shou Yun Xiao to death, disrupting his plan to seal the monster back again. The most similar comparison I get about those characters are those of Baccano. In Baccano, the writer Ryougo Narita once mentioned that his characters write the plot. He thinks about how those characters would act in that specific situations, and then manage the plot accordingly. As a result, there are many characters who are more active than others, but they would never betray their set of standard. In addition, there’s always a room for those characters to breathe. I have this exact same feeling about this set of characters. They have their own over-the-top way of acting, their worldview, their philosophy and they stick to those principles till their last breath. Sha Wu Sheng the Screaming Phoenix Killer never forgets that he’s an assassin, or Xing Hai always reminds us that she’s a demon through and through.

Finally, to our master thief Lin Xue Ya, I’m amazed that even at this point (when the most fearsome demon is about to wake up), he only thinks of the way to steal from Mie Tian Hai. It comes as rather childish to me. He eventually figures out that the legendary sword Tiang Xing Jian is NOT what Mie Tian Hai treasure the most, but it is his own swordplay. He’s too proud of his skills that he thinks only the scared sword would be worthy for he to wield. As a result, Gui Niao intends to fight him, if he wins the duel then it would prove that Mie Tian Hai’s swordplay is not that extraordinary… you know, that kind of logic. But how well Gui Niao is at wielding sword? Especially that pipe-sword? Thunderbolt Fantasy is getting to an end, but there’s still plenty of tricks up its sleeve and I can’t wait to see how it all wraps up.

Posted on 23 September 2016 with categories: Currently Watching:, Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya 3rei

I will be the first to admit that this season of this series disappointed me. I still stand by my word on this being better than previous seasons of the show but watching it fold out in animation has made me begin to think I was overstating just how good it really was. Though part of the problem is that Sliver Link really cannot match the level of quality of Ufotables adaptions though at times they can reach it temporarily. At the end of the series it’s clear that the budget or time constraints got too tight and sadly they ended up ruining what was to be the best moment this season had to offer. I will give credit where credit’s due as Silver Link did deliver on providing a new version of the Emiya theme. To anime only viewers this may have been a good scene but to those who have read the manga we know as to how good it’s supposed to be. The events may play out the same but how they were shown is worlds apart. You can take a quick look at chapter 23 of the Drei manga and you will likely see what I mean. You would be surprised in how a change of framing can affect a scene.

Overall the climax played out decently with naturally a Deus Ex Machina by the name of Tanaka needed to turn the tides. Bit confused on why Julian gave permission for Beatrix to vaporize both Illya and Miyu with a thunderbolt when he intends to use them as holy grails. His motives still remain unclear as well as he states that even if Illya can save Miya and the world then that’s all she will be able to save which is a bit to cryptic to pick out his true intent. Still it rather annoys me the small changes Sliver link makes that only really serve to worsen the series. For one they have always tended to cut out a bulk of the humor and treat it a bit more seriously when the manga tended to throw out jokes even at the dire points of the story. If one thing suffered in these adaptations it’s certainly the humor. They also have this strange tendency to add a big friendship speech at the end of each season that was never in the original material.

Here they have Miyu giving one to Shirou which really did feel like they added it merely to eat up some spare time. Another thing is the fanservice, I would say there was no fanservice in the manga because their most certainly definitely was but in these adaptations it really has been turned up a notch. For example this episode had a small extra scene showing Rin and Luvia in the bath for pretty much no real reason. But especially undignified with the Miyu scenes in this season as I notice a small shot in the last episode of Miyu struggling in the mud as it drags her down and they decided to add a blush to her cheeks which seems to suggest that “Yeah, she’s into this”. I am not looking too much into that, go ahead and see it yourself. I am not foolish enough to believe this show got four seasons because it’s Fate related and people were in it for the story. But can we not have some self respect here? If someone calls this show Loli porn I want to be able to deny it without hesitating to think about it.

Now there’s word that a Prisma Illya movie is in the works which actually has me intrigued. The only material left of the manga is a flashback arc with Shirou telling his story as shown by the end of this series. Quite frankly this flashback arc is the best part of the entire series and the choice to make it a movie may have been quite wise. That way they can give it the budget it needs so we don’t have a repeat of what happened here. But also this flashback arc is too short to fit into another season and if they don’t shove anime original content in it then it should fit nicely into a hour and a half or two hour movie. (The only anime original content I want in my Fate adaptations is more fight animation.) The way the flashback is structured as well makes it fairly self contained and manages to provide a satisfying climax which should serve as a great final act for the movie. All and all I approve this move but remain skeptical that Sliver Link can pull it off. I am also more than a little worried that they might try to shove in more fanservice into the story and I have made my stance on that point clear enough.

I am not really in a mood to write a review of this one so I might forgo doing it. Sorry to let down all five of you who actually care about these reviews.(Five may be a generous number) For the most part I covering this series was for my own self indulgence but even then I was surprised at just how little I could say about it. I thought I would be able to blab on and on about Fate material but as the pace slowed down I found myself with little to work with. Maybe I will be able to indulge myself with the fate material coming next year as we ain’t doe with this franchise yet. We got the heaven’s feel movies, a Prisma Illya movie and a Fate/Extra tv series coming. On that last one I couldn’t really care to be honest as the story in that game wasn’t noticeable and pretty much the only redeeming factor would be red Saber. A Fate/Apocrypha adaption would be a much better choice seeing as it’s the closest thing to what people could consider a Fate/Zero 2. Well till then people.

Posted on 22 September 2016 with categories: Currently Watching:, Mob Psycho 100

Looks like I need to eat my own words as it turns out Reigan isn’t the organization’s leader but he managed to convince the guards that he was. This was definitely Reigans finest moment as he makes use of pure deception to catch everyone off guard. He has absolutely no idea what exactly is going on and yet through pure luck and his own abilities as a conman he manages to catch the espers of Claw off guard. The result is a funny yet rather impressive feats of Reigan as he demonstrating his “Special moves” such as distracting someone with a hypnosis coin and then walking up and punching them. We also get to see just how Mob met Reigan and how Reigan gives Mob the most important life lessons he needs while still being a pretty shady individual. It is rather surprising as on first impression of this series I thought he would be a character whose act would make him utterly despicable but he may have very well have earned a fanbase with this. He may be using Mob but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t care about Mob.

In fact he may be the very person who cares the most as the others push Mob to unleash his powers, Reigan is the one saying no. In fact even when it comes to his clients Reigan at least lets them leave happy as opposed to the other con artists trying to frame Mob. Even his view of seeing the members of Claw as children who didn’t grow up is not inaccurate. After all they are acting like Saturday morning cartoon villains with their plot to take over the world and their reliance on force instead of reason shows the level of their immaturity. Still despite Claw fighting to the death, Reigan says that there is no reason to fight and they should run. His logic is flawed in that Claw isn’t going to just leave Mob alone if he runs away from this place but he did manage to prevent Mob from using his power to kill the Claw members. Or at least…almost. Considering how the episode ended it could very well be the case that Mob will aim to outright kill them. I doubt Reigan is actually dead though as I most certainly didn’t see any blood.

Ritsu’s story arc looks to have come to a close as Mob shows him that in the same way that Ritsu looks up to him, Mob holds high respect for Ritsu’s abilities outside of Psychic powers. His character arc was handled a little haphazardly but overall this works. Other than that we get the kind of animation you would expect from this show at this point, highly fluid and dynamic. It really is shows like this that show how far animation has come. In the old days you could only expect animated fights like these from movies or the opening of an anime. Now we can actually get anime that live up to the quality of their openings. Next week looks to be the finale of the show and it certainly has turned out to be more or less the hit of an otherwise rather weak season. WIth it’s interesting animation and solid storytelling make a worthy part of ONE’s body of work. Though sadly it’s chances of a second season are not quite as certain as One Punch Mans. If anything this series shows that ONE is not a one hit wonder(Pun not intended.) and does have talent as a storyteller. His talent as an artist is more up for debate but I certainly can say the guy can tell some interesting stories.

Posted on 21 September 2016 with categories: Random Anime Recommendations, Uncategorized

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Well, after the Versus Show, how about some in-depth anime discussions this time? In this section I will talk in more details about anime/ manga that I’m passionate about. Please note that this is not an actual review. Honestly, I never truly agree with the concept of reviewing (and rating for that matters) at arts, at something we suppose to feel subjectively. If I want to review that much I’d rather be critic. But I’m not, at heart I’m an anime fan who love this medium just like you guys. This in-depth piece not only give me a deeper look at the works that cut me deeply, it’s also serve as a reminder of why I love anime in the first place.

Lately, the world of The Flowers of Evil just can’t seem to escape me, which is quite reasonable to be honest because psychological drama is always my thing. After all, one of my favourite director is Ingmar Bergman. For those who say this is a horror work: NO, it’s not. It feels more like TERROR for me, something that can happen in real life (while horror’s main intention is to scare you, period). I re-watched the anime again after its airing back in 2013, and this time I managed to read the manga to see how it all ends up. Thank god that the manga is finished so I don’t have to wait for months for the next chapters to come. Flowers of Evil is one of the best anime/manga out there to really understand the dark side of growing up, the detachment to the world they live in, the self-confusion, the teen-angst and the obsession and destructive relationships. I will discuss in details below, really whatever springs on my mind. As this is obvious a spoiler-heavy post, please read it at your own risk.

(Read More)

Posted on with categories: 91 Days, Currently Watching:

As we near the end of 91 Days I have taken this time to really think over what this show has presented so far and I admit to be somewhat disappointed. Ultimately the ride has been solid and Studio Shuka have delivered on their promise of making a Mafia drama. However I cannot help but feel shortchanged by how this has played out so far. Things have certainly happened and yet despite this I think that more should have happened. Where are those mobster shootouts shown in the opening? But what I think may be the main factor for this show feeling standard is that despite this show taking it’s time I really don’t know these characters. The guy I found the most interesting died way back in episode two and since then no one left has matched his caliber. Nero is fun but since taking the mantle of the Don he has lost the playful side of his character. Avilio is an enigma from beginning to end never letting the audience into his thoughts. If this is supposed to be his journey then shouldn’t we see him change as he integrates himself into the mafia? But he’s almost always stoic, never really expressing his emotions.

This episode acted as a sendoff to Corteo who despite Avilio’s efforts to keep him alive is eventually ended by Avilio’s hand. Corteo willingly dies for Avilio’s sake and I am left to wonder. Just what did I know about this person? I understand that in a one cour series than character development is sparse and therefore spread thinly. That said I have come to realize that I really don’t know all that much about these characters. In Corteo’s case I know he’s Avilio’s childhood friend and seems generally uncomfortable with his role in the Mafia. Other than that I struggle to really say much about him. As 91 Days continues to kill off the more dynamic of the cast it’s up to the rest to pick up the slack which I don’t really feel they are capable of it. Ganzo at least is acting as a go conversation partner for Avilio to voice his opinions to but I say his time is now limited thanks to getting Corteo killed. I am betting that he’s next on the chopping block and I wonder just how he thought Avilio would react to him setting up Corteo to die. There truly is nothing standing in Avilio’s way for getting revenge so I would think he should stop messing around and start killing. I really cannot be that hard to come up with a plan to take out Nero and Vincent now. Then after getting Ganzo should be an easy feat as Avilio can blackmail him with the letter. Avilio, if you start the next episode moping around and doing nothing then I say to hell with you.

As for what happens after Corteos death is really a matter of Avilio rocking the boat. Things have calmed down and Nero isn’t planning to make any drastic moves. On top of this Avilio has earned the level of respect that Nero takes his word over the word of his right hand man who is beginning to get worried that Avilio might be stealing his position. He may be the next thing Avilio makes use of in his plans but I doubt he really needs something elaborate to take out his three targets. Please take heed that I am most certainly not calling this a bad show. But rather the premise doesn’t seem to be getting used to it’s full potential. The intent is admirable but we have plenty of build up and need some climax. Otherwise if this show goes out like a wet firework then it’s going to look lacking in hindsight. We still have to learn exactly what the 91 Days the title refers to actually is. For it doesn’t seem to me like Avilio has been with Nero for 91 Days. Perhaps the real reason Avilio was stalling his revenge was so he could meet the quota of 91 Days and not make the title rather meaningless?

Posted on with categories: Shiro no Koukoku Monogatari
Shiro no Koukoku Monogatari - Chapter 41 Review

Shiro no Koukoku Monogatari – Chapter 41 Review

Beat by beat from last time, it’s pretty clear that this is the start of Meriela’ & Friends’ arc, as well as a sort of soft recap on all the central character relationships that we left behind at the capital. A potential rivalry (which I look forward to seeing) between Riede and Meriela is implied, and some loose ends are tied up on their end from the last arc. Contrary to what I thought on my chapter 40 review, the pacing doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon; a new character is introduced despite my prediction that we’d be spending more time between Lectival and Meriela before moving on with the plot. We still are, but it’s moving along a lot faster.

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