Posted on 31 January 2017 with categories: 3-gatsu no Lion, Currently Watching:

Let me get off track for a bit, but the truth is that I’ve always been fascinated by moonlight. Moonlight gives me a warm presence, moonlight (especially in full-moon) gives me the bright feeling that there’s no more worry in the world. Sit there and watch the moonlight is one of those rare moments where I truly “enjoy my moments of nothingness”. Coincidently, many media involving moonlight have a special connection to me: “Moonlight Shadow”, “Dancing in the Moonlight”, even last year’s indie gem “Moonlight” gave me a certain feeling that resonate strongly to me. This week in 3-gatsu we start with the chapter named “Moonlight” and again this proves to be a special episode to me, one of my favorite chapter out of 3-gatsu in fact. The ambiguous relationship between Kyouko and Rei has been one of the show’s strongest material, and this episode manages to take that relationship up a notch.

I will forever remember the image of that young Kyouko; there she stands, beyond the moonlight by the window, demanding Rei’s and our attention. If there were moments that best captured the relationship between Rei and Kyouko, that would be the moment she sneaks into his bed, whispering those words “Don’t touch me. But don’t move away from me”. Kyouko, just liked the way Rei described her, is a strong-willed but deeply insecure girl. The girl who has everything that she doesn’t need, and ‘fails’ the only thing that profoundly mattered to her. To her eyes, she’s always the inferior one compared to Rei, both in shogi and in their father’s attention. Rei isn’t any better when it comes to self-doubting though, as a result we encounter one of the most heartbreaking moments when the only way those two know how to comfort the other is by ways of showing that insecurity, but even then Kyouko still gets hurt really bad. That is Kyouko, love and hate someone with the same intensity.

And when it comes to her loving someone with full force, we also see her and Gotou together for the very first time, and this relationship is still pretty much blurred at this time, but fascinating nonetheless. Gotou is oblivious to Kyouko’s feeling, even calling her “stalker”, but of course Kyouko doesn’t back down just because of that. We saw them together twice this episode, and while the first time he allowed her to walk side by side with him, the second time he ditched her like a bastard. Except when you think about it, this is the best kind of actions when dealing with someone as bombastic as Kyouko. He’s a married man anyways. People seems to agree that Gotou has been using her but from what I see it might not be the case; it’s Kyouko who clearly steps out the line right now. I have a feeling he still cares very much about his sick wife but I know we will see more about his relationship soon enough so let’s wait and see.

The rest of the episode also follows the best-of-three matches to determine title-challenger between Gotou and Shimada. They are basically equal in terms of skills level so the matches are long and worn-out ones and resulted in one slightly beaten out than the other, which the first match goes to Gotou and the second goes to Shimada. I’m glad to see that Rei really invests in those matches. Yes, to learn from the people who are higher than you and get inspiration from those matches are the right way to get out of his own depression now. Speaking of that, Hina has an adorable moment of sitting in the chair and worrying for Rei, just so that the grandfather gives her his wise advices of basically come down to “let him deal with his issues himself”. At the same time, Harunobu offers his insight on how Rei changed his attitude towards shogi and the very reason he cares deeply for his “best friend”, this is a sweet little material for Harunobu, but I can’t help but feel that we already know that Harunobu felt that way even before he tells it, so the result gives us very little impact; which is a shame. As now a tradition with 3-gatsu no Lion, if I have to recommend the series, I’d just recommend certain chapters out of the show because when the show hits, it hits real hard, like this week’s Moonlight chapter. Other chapters though aren’t as strong or memorable and I guess with the intention of adapting faithfully to every chapters of the manga by Shaft, we will have to bear with it for the long, long term.

Posted on with categories: Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

What happened in this episode was essentially a joke with the majority of the time dedicated to   the setup and final few scenes being the punchline. It doesn’t necessarily mean that this was a bad episode as this show is still burning strong. However, in terms of plot progression, this was a rather slow paced episode but all things considered, it is nice to take a break from the battlefield and have Tanya playing mind games to enhance her position. That makes the beautifully cathartic moment all the more satisfying when these mind games ends up working against her. She manages to make use of her knowledge of World War I to predict how the war would develop and due to her efforts to impress her superior, she accidently suggests the formation of a mage battalion whom could turn the tide of the war. Essentially, she unknowingly recommended herself to be at the forefront of the entire world war and handle the most dangerous missions. The brilliant thing about this is that God may have set things up a little by having Zeller see her resume but, in the end, it was Tanya herself, that ultimately dug her own grave. I actually think that if Tanya appealed to take the safer positions offered to her, then Zeller would allow her to refuse as he does seem hesitant to send her out. Unfortunately, Tanya’s mind works against her and ultimately assumes that she has no choice in the matter.

It’s great that the war college isn’t used as an excuse to pad out the story or introduce a classroom full of wacky new characters. Instead it resemble more like an actual college, which I certainly appreciate.  There aren’t any silly sports festivals here and instead, we have Tanya convincing a man to abandon his position in the military in order to be there for his newly born daughter. That was quite a good scene as it really did seem like Tanya was being genuinely heartfelt, only to have that psycho smile flare up as it was just a ploy to convince the man to give up his post so she would steal it for herself. Giving someone a good heart to contrast evil actions can lead to nice moral dichotomy but in the case of our salaryman here, I think she’s at her best at being a bastard. Yet, despite the audience knowing her real thoughts, she may be giving the impression of being a good person to those around her. The only one cautious of her true nature is the Vice Director of Strategy and Operation although he doesn’t know her full backstory. Otherwise, he would know that all he needs to do to keep her from taking over is to give her a safe cushy job in the rear.

Now that I think of it, I haven’t commented on the opening and ending credits of this show yet. The opening is something I appreciate for being different, but I find the song to be too robotic with its vocals. The visuals are far too obscured and the majority of the opening just throws too many scenes, which makes it too cluttered. I do like the part with Tanya shooting the Nutcracker as a way of showing her conflict with god. Actually, that Nutcracker is a rather amusing choice for the representative of God. After all, God is the one that threw him into this grim reality and generally comes in to give him a kick in the nuts now and again. One has to wonder if it’s an intentional joke. While the opening doesn’t catch me, I found myself loving the ending. The song has a certain militaristic theme which I have a certain fondness for and the chorus just sounds great to me. In terms of visuals, I can’t decide if it was resourceful or lazy to make it a slideshow of the art featured in the light novels. The amount of effort required to make this ending is minimal, and if any other light novel adaption tried to do this then it would make for a weak ending for each episode.

However, the artwork of the novels is quite frankly, outstanding. It has a level of detail and beauty that will likely make people lament the downgrade that Tanya got in character design in the anime. If there is a negative to this ending, it is that ignorance is bliss so that by pointing out how good Tanya looks in the novel, people might be resenting her animated character design. I don’t quite dislike her design as when it comes to animation and character art as I prefer my characters feeling alive over being highly decorative cardboard stills. Her design may be a downgrade but it does allow for the animation to give her a wider berth of emotional  response. It’s sort of like how the anime version of Pokemon Sun and Moon handled their character redesign, which made a lot of people angry. Ultimately, it was done for better animation and in all honestly, it is a reasonable tradeoff. That said, Tanya’s female subordinate still looks bad, and if she’s going to be in this show a lot more then they need to do something with that off putting design.


Posted on 30 January 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Scum's Wish

This episode offers more perspectives to these whole messy affairs and gives an unflinching look to teenager’s insecure-ness, echoed perfectly by the reflections from the leads from each of these sections. It ends up stronger than last week’s, continuing peeling their skins and making them as naked as possible. While I still have issues with some of its narrative, the story gets to a much stronger and more relatable grounds. Let’s just run each of its theme down by the narrations from both Hanabi and Mugi.

“I had no idea that being the object of someone’s desires was so heavy”

This was what Hanabi learnt from the affection of Ecchan, as the girl now confesses her love to Hanabi. The show certainly isn’t subtle at all by showing how Hanabi saved her from sexual abuse on a train and that’s the only obvious flaw I would give in that development (although I must admit that we need more awareness on the sexual harassment in public transportation). The crush from Ecchan towards Hanabi comes from a very understandable perspective, and she intends to hide her love until she senses something wrong about the relationship between Hanabi and Mugi so she pushes forward. Hanabi begins to realize she has been a center of Ecchan’s affection and now she understands the real weigh behind this. When someone give everything for their love it’s suffocate and heavy; you can’t carry the load with them because you obviously don’t feel the same way as them, but if you outright reject them it’s mean all their desire/affection is nothing more than… a wishful dream.  Moreover, this one-sided affection serves as a mirror towards her own crush with Kanai-sensei for a) he might reject Hanabi the same exact way she rejects Ecchan and b) keeps hanging on the love with someone who doesn’t love you back and you end up hurting the most, you end up all alone. Hanabi understands that and she understands that well.

“Secret can save you, so I pretended that it was just casual, but actually, it was much more serious”

So Mugi had a physical relationship with an older girl before and it still gives him a hard time now (in more ways than one). Guess he’ll never learn on his own mistake as now he’s doing the exact same thing with Hanabi. That aside, this flashback offers the more realistic look on what actual teenagers might experience in real life. It was told with a sad look, lonely feeling like when you looked back to the memories that you don’t want to. It’s obvious from the flashback that Mugi had a deeper feeling for this senpai and that feeling of lost and love still scarred him even now. Senpai sees their relationship for just physical though, but the show succeeded in showing that senpai herself was a lonely and vulnerable figure like most of teens out there. I don’t think she will reappear ever again but for the little screentime that she had she speaks right through the anxiety of most teens have to gone through. Which bring us up to the next point; how exactly does he consider his relationship with Hanabi? As a substitute for Akane-sensei or as a mean to put all his emotional frustration out in form of physical contact? Well, for now it would be the latter but Hanabi did the same too as after she was confused and depressed by the confession of Ecchan; she came to him for solace. But instead of sharing their pains by talking they do it much more physically.

“Love will make you blind”

Because when you idolize them so much you start to unnoticed their flaws. Akane-sensei has been the most generic character out of the cast but it’s time (that is, next week) that we will get under her skin to see what she really thinks. I’m not sure myself but wearing the same outfits as yesterday isn’t the good sign at all. Curiously though, Akane-sensei is a love rivals in more than one ways for Hanabi, and Hanabi forms a hatred feeling towards the female teacher. Which make me thinking, how much she love Mugi right now? This hatred comes from jealousy (and not trusting that woman) after all.

Although Moca’s annoying antics still suck big time, the show so far handles the melodrama quite well so point for them on that. Scum’s Wish is a show that excels on portraying ugly aspects of romance relationship; of the love so pure and strong it begins to be eaten over by desired; hatred and obsessions. So here’s basically where I stand on this show right now: handjob is good (as always), crying isn’t, kissing is questionable, and jealous/hatred feeling please-give-me-more.

Posted on 26 January 2017 with categories: ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept., Currently Watching:

The plot’s getting rather interesting, now that Jean finds himself in the middle of everyone’s watching eyes without having a clue what’s going on. The crowd thinks about him as an important factor for the upcoming coup d’état, his friend Nino certainly frames him as ‘the one and only’ when feeding info to Grossular, at the same time he was mysteriously received two cigarettes in the sealed envelopes and he was asked to be an ally for two higher authorities of ACCA. So despite the gorgeous ball, the tasty cakes and the night smokes might convince you otherwise, this is a very busy episode that set up a lot of frameworks for the future. Let all get down to it.

The big event here on the surface have to be all of important people in the story were invited to the ball of the Prince’s Coming of Age ceremony. Yes, it’s as absurd as it sounds and the imperial figures are framed as incompetent, arrogant and right out stupid. For now, my guess last week on why the uprising occur was way off the mark, as the reason is very silly: prince Schwan is going to take the throne and no one is happy with it. Just from the few scenes this week, he already makes his case on how annoying he could be. The show understands his stupidity so they accompany his speech and gestures with over-the-topness and so far it works well. The king isn’t much better either, as the only thing he stands out right now is his passion for cakes (quite cleverly underlined in the show). In fact, the true man in power has to be the president of Privy council. He is a puppetmaster who manipulate all the strings right now so it’s understandable that he’s afraid of Jean because Jean might threaten his position. That said, with all the powerful person gathered in one place, I expect next week’s event will trigger the uprising to come and make it all real.

Jean has a busy day in this episode as he had to attend to some dinner meetings twice and gets the hot from everyone else. I’m glad to see him embarrassed in front of the beautiful Mauve to be honest, because at least I can see his real emotions. As Jean becoming a trigger of all the events to come, the next moves everyone want to make of course would be making him their ally. Mauve wants him to provide information on his audits to her so she can “protect order” of this nation, curiously that’s the very same reason Lilium offered to Jean, but we all know they come from a very different motive. Nino, on the other hand, pushes really hard to convince Grossular that Jean were the one; whether he knows something deeper or what his real motives are remain pretty much unclear. I still stand by the opinion that Nino hasn’t betrayed Jean (not yet), but more that he uses Jean as a scarecrow to diverse everyone attention from his true goals.

With the gathering of all key characters, we also have a privilege to witness the chemistry of several minor characters, and boy do each of the pair have some unique chemistry together. I enjoyed the most the encounter of Mauve and Nino, since Mauve has no idea they were close friend so she can look right through to the issues. In addition, I found that Nino and Lotta are even closer than the sibling themselves. See how each of those pairs Jean – Lotta, Jean – Nino, Nino – Lotta have their own harmony and thus give much more dimensional to each of those characters? This is for me one of the best strength the show succeeds so far. I also find myself enjoying moments like Lotta being impressed by Mauve, Lotta was offered the favorite cake by the King, the arrogant prince had the crush on Lott… Actually, when put it that way I come to believe Lotta will play a vital role in the events to come, since she’s actually the one who pretty much encountered everyone (including the lovesick guy last week), while simultaneously enjoyed all types of cakes, breads and wines. This show is sooo rich with cake, bread and food that really made this show a rather tasty watch (but seriously, the amount of good foods here are insane). Things certainly are about to explore and everyone pretty much expected it, but what exactly “that things” are and to what extend remain a total mystery. And for that the show still remains intriguing.

Posted on 25 January 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Little Witch Academia

What’s a witch without a broomstick? Today’s episode deals with Akko’s troubles with flying and considering how terrible she is at nearly all facets of magic I am really beginning to wonder just how she got into this school in the first place. For the most part it’s not her fault as other witches at the school have clearly been trained in magic from a young age. Meanwhile Akko is just being introduced to it. I appreciate that this episode didn’t feature the shiny rod solving Akko’s problems and was instead about her troubles getting to grips with flying and trying to win a broom relay race. They almost did win the race through the magic of cheating so in this regard I am rather glad Akko didn’t get an unjust victory. Instead we have a excellent episode about a legendary broom and Akko’s hilarious training to fly a broom. I laughed pretty hard when she tried to intimidate her broom by snapping a twig in front of it.

It wouldn’t feel right for Akko to win after Sucy was sabotaging the other racers. Not even accounting that Akko wasn’t so much as flying a broom but instead trying to wrestle the legendary Shooting Star broom into submission. With that broom I now count three legendary artifacts at the school. The shooting star broom, the shiny rod and the philosopher’s stone which powers the Academy’s magic. This is merely an inkling at the moment but I think these items will play a part in the finale of Little Witch Academia. I certainly believe that we haven’t seen the last of the Shooting Star broom. Animation continues to be perfectly executed with flair and fun. So far the story has a episodic structure with events being brought up and resolved in the same episode. There doesn’t seem to be an overarcing plot so far and personally I am fine with that. As long as the series continues to be a barrel of fun there’s no real need to force in an overarcing plot. Otherwise it could make the same mistake as Death Parade and forget just what makes it’s concept work so well.

We have an introduction to many of the characters from the second OVA. Also are a number of cameo’s in this episode with a urn referencing Nonons hat from Kill la Kill, Inferno cop on the television of the room Akko flew past and even a very strange cameo of a man referred to as Chumlee from an American reality tv show called Pawn Stars. I don’t think it’s a spoiler to point out that Ursula is probably Shiny Chariot as the series has given several hints to that effect. It’s clear that something happened which pushed her to adopt her current persona and she seems jaded when Akko repeats her catchphrase back to her. She obviously lost her power, perhaps because the rod requires the childlike wonder that Akko has. Over time Ursula and Diana look to have gotten disillusioned by the technical workings of magic but both seem to yearn for the view of magic they had in their younger days. If this is true then it really is a matter of time before Akko can no longer use the shiny rod which may be the main conflict of this series. Though the opening does show some sort of antagonist who could act as a triggering factor for Akko to mature and potentially lose Shiny Rods power. Purely from a personal standpoint I think the best person to play antagonist for this series would be Shiny Chariot herself. Who better to crush Akko’s faith in magic and dreams? So on to episode four and I hope it isn’t effected by an old trigger curse, that being that episode four is where there is a huge animation quality drop.

Posted on with categories: Currently Watching:, Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu


After the last episode, I expected that this would be the episode where Yotaro digs his own grave. I thought he would have an outburst or just mope over his problems but surprisingly, Yotaro doesn’t do any of that. Instead he takes a course of action that is nearly suicidal and yet, a great step forward. The beginning of this episode touched on what exactly is the problem with Yotaro’s Rakugo with his conversation with his future Rakugo writer. Yotaro revealed that he doesn’t truly think about the meaning of the stories. That he tells and merely copies the mannerisms and tone when telling them. In that regard, he is like a parrot repeating only what he has been told with little thought beyond that. It is understandable as to why his Rakugo feels empty, because he can’t really empathize with the characters in the story.

The father of Konatsu’s baby is revealed to be the boss of the Yakuza which does explain as to why Konatsu wasn’t too eager to share that information. I was a little concerned that perhaps he forced himself on her but it looks like Konatsu may have some of her mother in her after all. For what I can tell from the exchange, Konatsu was in love with the man but it was clear he was never going to leave his wife for her. Thus like her mother she harbored feelings for someone who never returned them. Though I like how the Yakuza boss got angry at Yotaro for dragging Konatsu in and trying to push her into confronting him as it does show that he at least cares for her on some level. The main conflict of this episode was Yotaro essentially telling a Yakuza boss off for getting Konastu pregnant and telling him to not come back for the kid because he was going to raise him as his own. All the while being as polite as possible to avoid getting killed for angering him. Ultimately Yotaro uses Rakugo to vent his frustrations at the boss and I believe that’s the first time his Rakugo feels genuine as he is in a situation similar to the character within the story.

Overall it was a great episode and if I didn’t already like Yotaro before I certainly do now. He’s a happy go lucky idiot but the kind that has the right agenda at heart. He showed that his rant to the boss wasn’t for his own sake but instead for Konatsu. As he stated that he didn’t hold a grudge at the boss for being forced to spend jail time for someone else. In that regard I think he’s absolutely perfect fit for Konatsu and their relationship just warms my heart. Konatsu is a woman who keeps her feelings closed in while Yotaro shouts them from the heavens. To see Yotaro break down Konatsu’s standoffish nature and actually get her to begin to genuinely fall in love with him is the kind of love story I like to see. The kind with real chemistry and two characters who play off each others personalities instead of the usual bland male lead triggers anime character trope number 573. Yakumo looks to be pushing Yotaro towards understanding of the stories by giving him one of Sokuroku’s works and i think Konatsu is going to be a vital factor for Yotaro to discover his own Rakugo.

Posted on 24 January 2017 with categories: 3-gatsu no Lion, Currently Watching:

This week in 3-gatsu no Lion, we again witness another one of Rei’s depression, which is fine I guess because this is what the show does best anyways; but seriously it didn’t leave much of an impact on me, both because those depression thoughts start to wear out on me, and this section drags out for too long. Here lies the issues: the way Shaft decided to adapt every double chapters per episode mean that sometimes we suffer the disconnect in tones between two chapters like last week’s, or we have to go through their lesser materials like this one. In manga medium, this is totally acceptable because one volume has multiple chapters, so it doesn’t distract the flow of the story as severe as in adaptation form. This episode is where its deliberated pacing doesn’t benefit the story at all and if they speed up a bit to the next chapter the story would flow so much smoother.

I have to note that this is the first time ever that we witness him lost right in front of our eyes. Kudos for the sharp writing that building up the big match to come between Rei and Gotou before crushing that anticipation from Rei and us apart. We’re pretty much in the same mind as Rei expecting an easy win for him. Except it isn’t. Rei loses and he loses hard. The loss strips Rei down pretty hard that he loses faith in his own ability and even looks for job hunting. It’s pretty understandable for someone his age; young and talented but inexperienced; misjudged the capability of his opponent. This isn’t come from his own arrogant though, but more like he hasn’t give much thoughts about his opponent and he certainly paid his price. The very solid depressing visuals (as expected from Shaft) were conveyed through water bubbles again, and through his own dehydration. If there is one thing we certainly learn after this episode, it’s Rei is even bad of being depressed.

It’s tough to carry all these self-doubting thoughts on his own, so what does he decide to do next? Go to school and keep carry on of course. But kiddo, if you don’t feel okay from the inside, carry on with life like normal won’t do you anything good. He feels like he doesn’t belong at school, so he’s even more depressed and cries out of solitude. Thankfully, there are lights of hope at the end of the road, in the name of Hayashida-sensei who give him a much-needed advice and the workshop by Shimada which will help him improve his game. In a way, Rei needs to take 2 steps back before moving few steps forward, and this loss is something that someone his age need to realize the sooner the better; thus I get the narrative. But the episode lacks the final punch, moreover the male casts can’t handle the atmosphere or carry the emotions as good as the female counterparts (call me sexist. I’ll take it.), as a result this episode is a big meh. Give me more Kyouko, give me more of the 3 sisters please. In the end, characters-wise, the show still rocks (how it gives much personalities to Shimada despite a very unremarkable introduction for example) but I really hope the show doesn’t waste its time for some minor chapters like this and end up not having enough time to cover the main thread.

Posted on with categories: Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

This series really has started to shine since episode two and I admit that Tanya is carrying the show all by herself. The first episode shows what this series would be like without her character background and while that was serviceable, it’s on a much better footing now. Tanya’s quest to land a safe job out of the frontlines and God screwing her over at every point makes for a far more entertaining story than your standard magical girl anime. The cushy job testing a new magical device turns out to be even more dangerous than the front lines due to a crazed inventor. Thanks to divine intervention, Tanya ends up with a magical device far more powerful than anything else but as a tradeoff, she is forced to praise God every time she uses it. In the source material, the praising of God was involuntary and often came out of Tanya’s mouth no matter what she did. While the animated series depicts Tanya begrudgingly praying on her own accord, which certainly makes it all the more cathartic. After all, this device is likely to push her on to more and more battlefields where her life is in danger. In order to survive she will need to make use of the device and pray, which in turn forces her into even more battles. God has literally forced her on a path where the only way she can survive is praising him, which amounts to cheating when it comes to developing Tanya’s faith.

As I said before, God in the anime is treated differently from the source material. Originally, there were dozens of gods and Tanya’s Type 95 device was something that landed in her hands by coincidence. Originally it was intended to help inspire faith in the gods. I find the anime version to be more poignant and interesting as I’m not certain if God is working in his mysterious ways or if he is genuinely unreasonable. After all, God is being a bit of an jackass if you take the time to read the Bible. Honestly, I only managed to make it ten pages into the bible before it started putting me to sleep but within those ten pages, he seemed rather trollish. It is a question of whether this game he has with Tanya is a matter of God punishing an arrogant man or if he is using her to promote faith in others. Tanya’s actions do seem to encourage piety within the army and Tanya herself seems more or less oblivious to this fact because she’s too focused on proving being X wrong. The idea of Tanya doing god’s work while under the impression that she is rebelling against god is the kind of irony I find most amusing.

I was worried that the dreaded school setting was coming into the story, which is an aspect I detest when it comes to anime shows. But from the way things are looking, God is sure to have plans that will ensure that Tanya doesn’t get too comfortable. It also helps that this is a war college rather than a typical high school but still I get worried when any show tries to cram in a school in a story that doesn’t need one. However, if there is one thing that Tanya needs right now, it is strong side characters. So far, Tanya only has her girl subordinate acting as a foil but she could really uses a character to bounce off and interact with. She doing an admirably good job in carrying the show but a great lead needs others to work off. All the signs point towards the series is heading towards World War One with Tanya being at the very center of it all. I appreciate the level of quality that has gone into these past few episodes but numerous war scenes have a tendency to drain budgets and animation quality. Considering this is Studio Nut first work, the last thing I want to see is the quality of the show taking a nosedive.

Posted on 22 January 2017 with categories: Yearly Summaries

Considering how 2016 has been in other areas, in regards to anime it wasn’t that bad. But let us not dwell anymore than we have to on the past year and get the show on the road.


The Worst

Worst Show

Aidan: Occultic;Nine

This is one of those shows which baffles me on just how it was even made. There can be good reason as to why some truly terrible anime were made. Production troubles, over ambition, lacking studio experience, poor source material…but this is an example where the only explanation I can think of as to why it turned out so terrible is the sheer incompetence of the writer and director.  I am long tired of speaking about this show so I will just round this up. Horrible direction that speeds up exposition to make it look like an episode of Bakemonogatari and even be visually nasuationing. A story which makes no sense and has a huge middle portion which is entirely pointless. No likeable characters and a girl with a chest so big that it rivals that of Mina from Air Master but the difference being that Mina’s huge knockers are meant as a joke when Ryouko’s are supposed to be attractive. This show is horrible, horrible trash and hope these two never work in this industry ever again.

Runner up: Musaigen no Phantom World(For killing the last bit of respect I had for KyoAni)


Mario: Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress

And with this Kabaneri takes the crown jewels. Well, first off, I don’t really mind popcorn action flicks, to put it another way I can endure it but what turn me off the most is when those shows take themselves too seriously. This one had this problem and then some. The action is over the top, which is fine, but then moments like pregnant-woman-turn-zombie got stabbed deliberately by “our people” just to prove the point (that doesn’t matter who you were before, when you got bitten by the zombie your humanity is over), it became rather tasteless. The plot itself is full of holes and overpowered characters that the more you think about it, the more it falls apart. In the second half the show did fall apart and it became exactly a train-wreck. For runner-up, let give a big round of applause to Occultic;Nine for its utmost intention to keep confusing us and make us feel uncomfortable till the very end. I’m not as pissed off about it as Aidan of course, but really this show was a mess which made very little sense.

Runner up: Occultic;Nine


Biggest Disappointment

Aidan: Erased

It is a point to be made that just because a show is disappointing, does not mean that it’s bad. Erased is by no means a bad show but it did manage to build peoples hopes to the degree that before the shows end people were declaring it a masterpiece. I offer this to Erased as I expected Berserk to disappoint but Erased I was well on my way to declaring one of my all time favorites. It really is evidence as to how much an ending can effect a show as while watching it the show manages to capture you but when all’s said and done and you look back, you realise the journey wasn’t as special as it was promising. Erased’s biggest crime is delivering a well done character drama when it was gearing the audience up for a mystery thriller. Thus I can fault the show for that, even if the end product was still good in it’s own right.

Runner Up: Berserk(2016)


Mario: Berserk (2016)

Arguably one of the most anticipated title last year, coming off from a 10 years plus high-regarded anime and even more prestigious (but endlessness) manga from Kentaro Miura. The long wait from us fans was not satisfied though, as the way the show handled the source material was just wrong. First the use of CGI animation failed miserably here, as the effect the CGI has was jarring and clunky and immediately took your attention away from the story. Then the pacing was off and the story was very newcomer-unfriendly. This series achieved something that I thought was impossible for Berserk: that maybe the manga isn’t that  special all of us fans hyped up to be: maybe it’s just a story about the killing, revenge and all ugly natures of human and nothing else. Second place goes to Joker Game that it started out incredibly solid for the first two episodes, then the episodic nature really killed the show as it became predictable (guess who will win in the end?), the stories that crammed up into single episode resulted in pretty much half-baked outcomes.

Runner up: Joker Game


HelghastKillzone: Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress

As the writer who covered this show over the spring 2016 season, I remember buying into the hype and singing its praises for the first half of the show before it fell off a cliff in its second half. With the same staff behind Attack on Titan, it had the animation, action, setting and music to potentially become the anime of the year but veered off into a shitty direction with the introduction of the main antagonist. To this day, I would recommend the first seven episodes as the shining example of what anime has to offer in the action department but its latter half is something to be avoided at all costs. My only solace is that the series is reseted by the end of the finale and that the recently announced second season will have a clean start.

Runner up: Dimension W


Posted on 21 January 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Scum's Wish

Welcome to the roller coaster of the emotional manipulative anime of this season, are you with me on this ride? Scum’s Wish has the exact opposite issues with ACCA in that it tries to overwhelm us with lots of raw feelings that sometime it touches the line of manipulation. This episode, fortunately, still pretty much gets away with that problem, but at the same time I’m not satisfy with it. In my first impression, I have mentioned that the show explores two interconnected themes, first is the hard truth about one-sided love and keep pressing their heads into thick wall (which I kinda have mixed feeling) and the second theme is about sharing the pain together through physical and destructive relationship (which I find myself really invested in). Unfortunately, with the introductions of those “third-girls” from our mains – themselves a third person on their own love –the story heads itself towards the former and pretty signals that things will go pretty heavy and unsatisfied later on.

As I said earlier, to make things even harder to unknot, we are introduced with the new threads of this web’s relationship, Moca and Ecchan, the person who secretly love Mugi and Hanabi, respectively. These are as doomed a relationship as you would get, but it’s actually interesting to see how similar yet different those two hopeless obsessions progress. Both are described as childhood crush (which actually the same with the mains), but while Moca’s crush towards Mugi is framed as childish and somewhat light in tone, Ecchan secret love towards Hanabi is framed as sort of hidden and forbidden love. While Moca is always very vocal about her love, Ecchan’s love is silent and concealed. Hanabi actually sees through all the efforts Moca’s trying to make to pull Mugi off her, thus she harshly shrugs the girl off. As Hana says it to Moca, as much to herself; “Don’t go around clinging for what aren’t yours”; it’s never fun to see your ugly sides through the mirror. Well, as for Ecchan, I give it a point for how the show actually portraits a yuri crush, a love from a girl to another girl that feel realistic and true to life.

The show doesn’t give us much the actual relationship between Mugi and Hanabi in this episode, but when it does, it’s still remarkable and brings the emotions forward. They rely on each other physically in order to take away their pain and frustration towards their true love, and in one of flashback of Mugi there was another blond, short hair girl who seem to sexually abused him before? I’m not really sure but if that’s the case then… *smirk* bring it on. Talking about remarkable, I’m very impressed by the ED of Scum’s Wish that is done in the style of the Rorschach inkblot test and is very risqué in presentation that very, very fitting to the provocative nature of the series. It might be just me but I see this ED full of female private parts, naked characters (because those feelings are pretty much naked too) and the music really brings the melancholy tones home. Good stuff.

But on the other spectrum, in terms of story, even with its already complex web of doomed relationships, the show still feels the need to cram in a side love story from Hanabi’s friends asking for her advice on which boys she should pick. I get the point of this little story that meant to point out that her friend’s love isn’t true love at all, but I can’t help but feel that side story is totally unnecessary. Those relationships are already complicated as it is, there is no need to stuff in more doomed love from someone else’s. All in all, this is the direction that I’m a bit worry whether the show can pull it off. Now that all the main characters are introduced let see how they manage to use them to full potential. I’m pretty much in for a ride anyways so come at me with all you got Scum’s Wish.

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