Posted on 16 January 2019 with categories: Anime Reviews, Finished Series: Adventure/Fantasy/Science Fiction, Planetes, Throwback Thursday

If there is one thing I have lost watching seasonal anime, it is patience. Every week I expect something to happen, some kind of payoff, to make watching that week worth it. Luckily, Planetes as brought that back to me. Its depth of writing, characters, and general structure belay an anime of a different age. Before Moe and Sis-con took over the seasons. Back when a series was allowed to take things at its own pace, and actually finish its story rather than languishing in sequel hell. Of course, what else can you expect from the first work of Makoto Yukimura, the author of currently published Vinland Saga.

Lets jump in!

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Posted on with categories: Currently Watching:, Dororo

Hello and welcome to show number two for me of the new season! Dororo is an interesting one, based on a 1960’s manga, with this being its second adaptation. This week we meet another demon, learn our leads name and that not all spirits are bad. Let’s dive in!

Visually, Dororo is sort of a mixed bag for me. One on hand, I love the older style it has going for it, and much of the lack of detail allows the animators to have some fun. On the other hand though, the feet are blobs, and everything is a green/brown. I also noticed some rather static scenes that, compared to the first episode, left me wanting. Overall though I think Dororo is good. We know from the first episode that when it wants to, it can look gorgeous. It’s just that this week was rather subdued, as our first intro to what the day to day for the series will be. With that done, now I can get to the actual meat of the episode.

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Posted on with categories: Anime Reviews, Goblin Slayer

The controversial nature of this shows opening episode may have many turning away from it due to believing it’s nothing but shock value but that truly isn’t what Goblin Slayer is. I will say that the manga may hold some truth to that statement but thanks to some tasteful censoring(Yes, sometimes censoring can be a good thing) this story could at least be something more closer to a fantasy adventure series. In truth Goblin Slayer is more a love letter to low level Dungeons and Dragons so for those who happen to have a nostalgia for such a thing, this series could have a big appeal. However for the average anime watcher I can say this, this show is called Goblin Slayer and you can bet that’s exactly what you are gonna get.

Goblin Slayer slays goblins. It’s what he does in the first episode and you can bet it’s what he does in the last. This is essentially a series where you watch the equivalent of goblin slaying Batman go about his business of killing as many goblins as humanly possible. For some watching him do this is enough and I admit that his single minded obsession can be a source of some pretty good comedy. However if you find that isn’t enough and are looking for this series to maybe provide something deeper in regards to world building or characterisation then you will be sorely disappointed. The Goblin Slayers party of adventures are staple D&D archetypes with little in the way of interesting traits of backstory. The worldbuilding pretty much borrows a lot of it’s lore from other more notable works and not much is really expanded upon besides the small detail of goblins being the worst despite being regarded as a minor pest by adventurers. There is quite of number of light novel tropes such as Goblin Slayer having a whole harem of girls after him despite never taking off his helmet and never talking about anything other than killing goblins.

This is essentially a anime with a limited appeal and a simple objective which can be entertaining but not something you would hold in high regard. White Fox did an excellent job in adapting it for the most part in how they toned down the less unsavory aspects but there are times where the animation for action scenes is on the unimpressive side. The plot doesn’t really move beyond killing Goblins and Goblin Slayer slowly warming up to other people. Some moments have fanservice that is just ridiculously inappropriate and unnecessary. But get past that and the rather grimdark first episode and you have a show that makes for a decent watch for some.

Posted on 15 January 2019 with categories: Currently Watching:, Mob Psycho 100 II

Hello and welcome to the first outright perfect episode of anime of 2019! Mob Psycho 100 knocked it out of the park this week in every respect, so let’s just jump right in!

Right off the bat, Bones is out in full force animation wise. Everything about this episode, visually, was fantastic. Even in drab, rain-slick scenes they found a way to introduce color to a drab landscape. And that isn’t even mentioning the wholly unique perspectives or styles for animation. Take for instance the straight up street fighter/fighting game reference. Done entirely in Mob Psycho’s style, it was a fantastic gag. Then there was one of my favorite styles, which only appears in Mob Psycho, the paint on glass effects. For depicting other worldly spirits, I think it does a fantastic job of showing that etherealness. Add on to all of this the sheer amount of sakuga throughout the episode, from Dimple jumping between trees, to the flowing sludge of the monster spirit, and you have a feast for the eyes. 2 weeks in and Bones has already won Animation. Wow.

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Posted on with categories: Anime Reviews, Currently Watching:, Zombieland Saga

Zombieland Saga was a show that came out of the gate guns blazing, no one expected it nor did anyone predict it but it left a strong impression when it first aired it’s starting episodes. Originally considered to be another zombie apocalypse anime, it overthrew expectations by turning out to be a zombie idol anime. Outlandish though it may be this actually worked as the idol shows ranged from death metal to Rap and the comedy hit all the right notes with special mention to the manager who is equal parts ridiculous and bombastic. It looked like this was the series to take a look at the idol anime genre and poke fun at it’s ever so tiresome tropes.

But ultimately the greatest failing of Zombieland Saga was becoming that which it originally parodied. The end result isn’t something that I would consider a trainwreck like Kado as while Zombieland becomes something lesser, it’s still at least a decently enjoyable watch. The problem is that it’s opening episodes promised something greater and could have potentially been the anime to point out and mock the very nature of idol anime itself for it is something that has been long overdue such a scathing. Sadly the case is that once episode three hits the story gears more towards traditional idol anime and the fact that the idols are in themselves zombies becomes less and less relevant. What at once was a great surprising anime just became another idol anime.

There is fun to be had with the show and sometimes it can bump up from being alright to pretty good. The opening is quite excellent and the comedy has some great highlights with Yugiri’s mistimed slaps and Yamada Tae just being the legendary Yamada Tae. Though when the series aims to hit a more emotional tone this often contrasts far too greatly with the general slapstick nature of the show itself, often not making its mind up on whether it wants to make you cry or laugh. Episodes become more formulaic as well with each often starting that a pep talk session with the manager so he can ham it up for comedic effect. Coupled with an ending which acts more as a midpoint finish rather than a finale and you have a show that’s rather half baked in nature. Overall this show can be a fun watch but it once held the potential to be greater but then went for something more more marketable but more generic as a result.

Posted on with categories: About

 

Like a cold you can’t get rid of, the new season has come and all the premieres have been aired. Overall, this Winter season looks to be an exciting one. It’s certainly the fewest shows in terms of quantity for quite a while, and shows that supposed to be stand out are doing a pretty good job. Mob Psycho 100 2 delivers one of the best episode in a while, Boogiepop tanks but the rest is what we could’ve predicted. This season also marks many shows cut-corner by animating entirely in CG, and the results are pretty clunky. I hope this trend won’t become dominant in the future.

Below is our schedule for 2019 Winter season:

Aidan: Yakusoku no Neverland

Mario: Boogiepop Phantom (2019), Kemurikusa, Kouya no Kotobuki Hikoutai

Lenlo: Dororo, Mob Psycho 100 II, Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru (carry-over), Paranoia Agent (Throwback Thursday)

Wooper: Kaguya-sama wa Kokurasetai

Hooray for Wooper who will be back on board with us for the season. Extra hooray for Lenlo for working extra next season (I hope you survive, lad). And let’s hope for this 2019 year to be a better anime year than the last one.

KANPAI!!!

Posted on with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Grimms Notes The Animation

Short Synopsis: A group of adventurers transform into fairy tale characters to do battle against an evil Little Red Riding Hood.

Aidan’s review:
What happens when your characters are so unremarkable that even the quirks you give to difference them make them only more trite?
What happens when your story depends on the legacy of other greater stories in order to carry it?
What happens when you write a plot twist that has no real clues yet one of the characters realizes the truth regardless? And even that cannot make your story interesting?
What happens when your animation is so bare and routine that nothing truly makes it stand out?
What happens when all of your world building is done by characters stating what should be blindingly obvious to them for the sake of the audience?
What happens when your anime is so forgettable that you can’t remember the characters names or even half the plot upon finishing an episode?
Well I don’t know what happens when this is the case. Sorry, what was I supposed to be watching again?
Potential: 0%

Wooper’s review:
Let’s examine what makes Grimms Notes one of the most forward-thinking debuts of the winter season. To start, the characters are a mix of Japanese tropes and fairy tale icons that should appeal to fans of uncomplicated heroes. Their banter is unlikely to surprise or offend anyone, which is an admirable goal in 2019. Their designs look like they were created after doing a Google search for “how to draw anime characters,” and taking heavy inspiration from the least distinctive results. This is an inclusive move, as it ensures that viewers with poor eyesight won’t be missing much of the fun. The overarching story isn’t clear yet, but it seems that our adventurers will be fighting against corrupted fairy tale protagonists each week, and trying to revive a thingamajig by defeating all the whatchamacallits. Leaving things so open-ended was a wise decision, since establishing the groundwork for a gripping story might be too demanding of the audience’s attention. If you’re going to work in the entertainment industry in this modern age, you have to keep your demographic’s reduced attention span in mind. Finally, the animation and background art are inconsistent, which indicates a lack of toxic perfectionism on the director’s part. A healthy work environment is key in the current year! In conclusion, Grimms Notes’ commitment to mediocrity makes it one of the most refreshing shows of the season.
Potential: 0%

 

Bermuda Triangle: Colorful Pastrale

Short Synopsis: There are idols who are mermaids…or Mermaids who are idols…or…look you don’t care.

Aidan’s review:
Hold the phone, how does someone drink tea underwater. Wait how does someone drink underwater period? How can you have a shop underwater that offers drinks? Wouldn’t it just get diluted into the seawater? How do you mix tea underwater? Sorry getting off topic so on to the mermaid idols. Well this episode was…wait a second did they say that was a cake shop? How does one make underwater cake? Wouldn’t that just be soggy cake and taste disgusting? How does that even…come on, the episode. The episode. Alright see…wait underwater letters? Wouldn’t the paper be mush? Wouldn’t the ink just wash…STOP, Logic does not belong here. So anyway this episode was about…sorry I was a little too focused on the mechanics of underwater food and devices that I kinda forgot to pay attention to the plot. Had something to do with some girl being born from a pearl, some tide blowing in some mansion and some movie in the mansion which inspires them to be idols or something. I just didn’t really care all that much.
Potential: 0%

Lenlo’s review:
I’m really not sure what to say here. It’s a mermaid idol show. In terms of water people, it is inferior to Nagi no Asukara in every way, and in terms of Idol shows it seems low bar there too. Everything from the production to the VA just seems cheap and flat. Like there was no effort put into any aspect of the series. Even had I been the kind of person to enjoy Idol shows, I probably would have felt like turning this off 10 minutes in. This is a hard pass from me.
Potential: 0%

Posted on 14 January 2019 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Kaguya-sama wa Kokurasetai

Short Synopsis: Two student council members attempt to manipulate each other into confessing their love for the other.

Aidan’s review:
After the disappointment that was Grand Blue, I was fully worried that Kaguya being another quite comedy focused manga would be diluted in the transition. Thankfully to some great direction it seems this show has nailed everything that made the manga so enjoyable. I have a particular fondness for the opening which portrays Kaguya and the president’s battle for love like some James Bond spy thriller and the way the anime plays up their interactions as mind games like those between the worlds greatest detective and Kira is part of want makes things work so damn well. Coupled with the narrator hyping their misunderstandings or power plays into highly dramatic explosions make the overall idiotic nature of their dilemma all the more palatable. Provided this can keep up the fun and not let the premise grow stale then this could well be a show to keep an eye on this season.
Potential: 85%

Wooper’s review:
Non-manga reader reporting for first impressions duty. The thing that excited me most about Kaguya-sama coming into this episode wasn’t the series’ reputation, but the fact that it shared both a director and a lead writer with Rakugo Shinjuu, one of my favorite anime in recent years. I wasn’t expecting quite that level of excellence from Kaguya, but my hopes were still high, and this premiere actually met them. Shinichi Omata’s background with Shaft really shone through here, with comedic cutaways and exaggerated facial expressions heightening the ridiculousness of each segment. The idea of two hormonal geniuses trying to trick each other into making the first move is a novel one, but it’s not a golden goose all on its own – you need strong direction and editing for their monologues not to feel stupid or tedious. Just as important are the performances from the voice actors, who have to sell their characters as both prodigies and lovestruck teens. Plenty of praise will be paid to Aoi Koga’s Kaguya in the coming months, especially since she’s a relatively new VA, but everybody else pulls their weight as well. Yutaka Aoyama’s sly, almost paralyzing delivery is instantly recognizable in the narrator role, and Konomi Kohara strikes a perfect balance between likability and airheadedness, which mirrors Kaguya’s relationship with her character, Chika. If I have one complaint about the series, it’s the art style used for the furniture in the student council room, which seems to employ some strange combination of cell shading and thickened outlines that results in a highly unnatural look. One has to imagine that a lot of scenes will be set in that room, but if everything else about the show stays this good, I’ll have no reason to complain.
Potential: 80%

 

Endro!

Short Synopsis: A demon lord is sent back in time after being defeated by four heroes, and must work to sabotage their studies as their teacher.

Wooper’s review:
This was pretty cute! The animation was steady all the way through, the fantasy-inspired backgrounds had some care put into them, and the characters all have a sheen to their designs that kept me interested in how they’d look in the next scene. TV anime in general seems to have hit a point where even a solid, workmanlike production is big news, so congrats to Endro for looking like somebody cared about how it turned out. More important than its looks, though, are the series’ playful spirit and cheeky commentary on game mechanics. Not all of the humor worked for me, but there’s a streak of self-awareness running through the script that makes the on-screen text scrolls and discussion of RPG classes feel fun, rather than stupid. This season’s Shield Hero positively reeks of THIS IS JUST LIKE A VIDEO GAME-itis, but Endro functions a bit more organically. For example, it ties its main character’s wielding of a club into her obsession with heroism, which has left her classless and stuck with a suboptimal weapon; despite this setback, she cluelessly maintains that she’ll become a hero if she has a positive outlook. This is a lot more tolerable than a virtual display popping up and preventing a shield-bearing character from equipping a sword because they are a shield-bearing character, which they process with zero personality. There are a couple other jokes that earned a chuckle from me, but one of them in particular works much better if you’re not anticipating it, so I’ll cut things off here. If you like cute girl shows and game-inspired settings, consider giving Endro a shot. You might regret it, but you’re already watching seasonal anime, so how much worse can your life get?
Potential: 50%

Mario’s review:
In general, I don’t mind Endro. Watching this, I feel like it attempts to do sort of the same thing as Tantei Opera Milky Holmes. They both twist around the tropes while never really take these seriously. While Milky Holmes is more parody, this one just contents with the characters having fun time and going for an adventure all over again. It has that moe designs (even down to the cute loli devil), but so far it delivers its jokes with grace and I would say it’s a above-bar CGDCT offering of the season. The main concept seem to be the devil Maou tries her best to stop this hapless students from becoming heroes, but fall for their charms instead. I have no problem with that and if it still has that much wits (my favorite: the mage “predicts” the weather forecast) and maintains its bright settings, I’m all in to follow it.
Potential: 30%

 

Kouya no Kotobuki Hikoutai

Short Synopsis: A crew of female pilots protect their employer from enemy fighters in a frontier setting.

Mario’s review:
The most remembered aspect viewers gonna get out of this episode is its technical aspect. There’s not much narrative to begin with since a huge chunk of this episode concentrates on the aerial combat. On that front I’m quite happy with what I saw so far. The combats are mostly well choreographed that you can mostly follow what happening on-screen (I do have some troubles recognizing the planes though), there’s a great attention to piloting details, for example it spends proper time for us to see how they do a start-up procedure. The camera angle (which sometimes adopt first person POV like in a game) and the sound designs are other stand outs. The thing that I’m a bit worried about, is that these aerial combat overwhelmed the characters so far as we don’t know much about them. In addition, the characters’ CG models might be a hit or miss. I enjoy the quick, natural dialogues in these first few scenes and I do like the cowboy settings so I hope the show can give those justice in later episodes.
Potential: 40%

Wooper’s review:
This series missed my strike zone by a wide margin, since it’s all about planes. More than half of the episode is spent depicting a dogfight between 3DCG aircraft, with particular attention paid to sound design – the groaning of their metal frames as they make harsh aerial maneuvers, the pinging sound of bullets ripping through their bodies, and the sputtering of their engines come to mind. I was listening to the episode through a set of nice speakers, but unfortunately, even that level of immersion wasn’t enough to keep me interested. The decision to center the opening scene around a dude in the middle of a romantic dry spell is likely to blame for my lack of involvement, because his squad of freelance pilots is quickly wiped out in the dogfight. Getting to know the girls who are, y’know, the stars of the show might have been nice, but the only tidbit I picked up was that one of them really likes pancakes. I can admire the decision not to dump a ton of info about the show’s (seemingly alternate) universe in the first episode, but go too far in the other direction and you end up with something like this. Luckily, the closing moments of the episode seem to promise a more grounded second effort, so I might give it another try and see whether the characters make an impression in a different atmosphere (pun intended).
Potential: 40%

Posted on with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Dimension High School

Short Synopsis: Four students and their teacher are transported into a virtual quiz show world by a talking meteorite.

Lenlo’s review:
You know, I thought when I first saw the PV for this that we would be getting a meta comedy. Sorta like Pop Team Epic was last year. Something the blends reality and anime and makes you question just what anime is. Dimension sorta does that, but not in a good way. Dimension doesn’t make me question the foundation of anime, but rather why someone thought it worth animating at all. It’s not funny, the CGI is worse than Berserk (which if you know me, means a lot), story wise there’s basically… nothing. So the only question I really have for Dimension High is this.
Potential: Is this even Anime?

Mario’s review:
Watching this show reminds me how some of the tropes we can tolerate in anime becomes unbearable when it does in live-action. For example, we seem fine with character overacting in anime but when the Teacher does it in live-action it’s grating to watch. Dimension is also one of the worst production I’ve seen this season: the live action acting is terrible all around the clock, and the full-CG animation doesn’t even attempt to be anything near passable. Then we have a plot of talking rock (in a weird CG special effect) and riddles for Christ sake and you have a full package of bad-anime-please-leave-me-alone.
Potential: bad-anime-please-leave-me-alone

Wooper’s review:
Worse acting than The Room + worse CG than Berserk 2016 = comedy of the year
Potential: AHHHHHHHH

 

Domestic na Kanojo

Short Synopsis: A hot-for-teacher teenager moves in with his crush and her younger sister (who he recently slept with) after their parents plan to get hitched.

Mario’s review:
Boy, here it finally comes. A melodrama with contrived plots to squeeze out the most dramatic juice. Anyone here who doesn’t find the whole re-marriage affair jarring? It comes out of nowhere (to the main lead himself) and it happens way too quickly. And add that we have him living under the same roof with two cute girls whose 1) he has big crush of and 2) he happens to have sex with and guess what? After 20 minutes I honestly don’t care one iota about all three main characters. Okay, while I’m most certain won’t follow this because I know the direction it’ll ultimately go, there’s still some positive aspects in this premiere. I quite like the moody, heavy-saturated room where he and the little sister sleep with in the beginning. While the exterior scenes can be plain, the interiors feel live in (as appropriate given the title of the show is Domestic Girlfriend). Second, these characters do have some extra-multidimensional level as each other seems to carry their own weight/issues in their shoulder. The comedy bits, on the other hand, totally feel awkward. But it might works for this first episode’s benefits because it has full of awkward moments, from awkward first sex to adjusting themselves to a new relationship to all these awkward confrontations. Anyone who loves soap opera or tearjearker melodrama, this is a perfect healthy dose for you.
Potential: 20%

Wooper’s review:
The premise of this series reads like an elaborate porn setup, which it probably would be if the source material didn’t run in Shounen Magazine. Everything about the story is a ripoff, right down to the main character’s chubby best friend, who exists solely to react with shock to his pal’s sex life. DomeKano doesn’t even earn points for avoiding purity-related tropes, as the protag is the same type of dope that would star in a pruder version of the same show, despite the fact that he’s lost his virginity. The teacher’s character is just a male fantasy, and her little sister is the sexually-open tsundere that you never knew you wanted until now. There’s potential for this thing to go completely off the rails, which might make for an entertaining watch. Maybe the main dude will fuck his new stepmom, too. That possibility has to be worth a few percentage points, right?
Potential: 5%

 

Mahou Shoujo Tokushusen Asuka

Short Synopsis: After defeating an evil lord, a magical girl is dragged into being a spec ops agent

Aidan’s review:
This start isn’t as bad as I was expecting but this really is a story that takes its premise far too seriously. The big thing that I can point out as pretty terrible in this episode was the soundtrack which sounds like a cheap 80s b-movie. The whole idea of Magic girls acting as spec ops after the final battle is over is somewhat an interesting idea but it is rather contradictory to try and make your magical girls badass while making reference to the more cutesy side of it. It’s a bit hard to take PTSD seriously when shes getting it from a mascot costume. The characters are fairly bland with the main being a pretty basic emo whom is so deep and tormented and blah blah blah. It’s clear that the story is going through a number of hoops to try and justify the magical girl aspect which goes for naught when the girls could just be superpowered females without any Magical girl show references and the story to be the same. At the moment I would say this might be fine for some but it has high chance of going down the drain fast. The sunbathing pair of tits at the end seems to promise that.
Potential: 0%

Lenlo’s review:
Once more into the breach of “Dark Magical Girls”, my friends. Ever since Madoka Magica everyone has been trying to ape Urobuchi, and let me tell you, Asuka does not succeed, but it doesn’t entirely fail either. Basically, Asuka is… acceptable. It completely skips the starting point of girls getting powers, and jumps right into the aftermath. From PTSD to disillusioned Magical Girls, Asuka goes for it all. If it can manage not to jump the metaphorical shark, Asuka could be perfectly fine. The big fear here is whether or not it goes a bit too crazy and turns into a trainwreck. For some people though, even that might be fine. After all, I am never one to turn down a good dose of anime suffering.
Potential: 20%

Posted on with categories: Boogiepop wa Warawanai (2019), Currently Watching:

Welcome to Boogiepop, one of the hallmark franchise in the history of this medium. The Light Novels itself dated back in 1995 and is still considered as one of the earliest Light Novels ever released and is often credited as starter of the Light novem trend in Japan. The anime adaptation in 2000 remains one of the most disjointed and confusing anime ever made and the Boogiepop franchise has inspired (along with its LN sources) a movie adaptation and its universe is still remain well known to this day. A straight adaptation from its source has been a long way coming and this first 3 episodes in particular closes up what I believe is the first book of the whole franchise. This new anime keeps the tradition of its psychological thriller genre and the 2000 anime’s tradition: it’s disjointed, vignettes and it’s dense with information and multiple narratives that repeated-viewing might require in order to get the most out of the story. It took me two tries in the first two episodes in order to grasp what the hell is going on and remember all the names and faces. Like the 2000 anime version (which I watched, enjoyed but mostly forgot all the details), you can view all these events happened in the story as a piece in a big puzzle and until the puzzle itself is finished that it starts to make sense. While the general reception to this new adaptation has been muted, it’s packed with such layered narrative that I’m willing to take the risk to blog the show and smooth out all the plot threads so that anyone who confused by the episode can have a better grip to what is going on.

So we can start with the main catalyst of this arc, which are Echoes and Manticore. As we soon learn from Naoko Kamikishiro (for the sake of consistency I’ll use surnames for all characters) – in Boogiepop’s most info dump moments that they apparently shared a telepathic link – Echoes is an Alien who was sent to us to judge the human race. He’s fallen into an evil organization (which we know very little of at this point), and from there they create a failed clone of Echoes, Manticore. Unlike the original self who can only repeat what he hears (hence the name), Manticore can talk, eat human flesh and copy the appearance of the person he eats. In one of his attempt, he encounters Masami Saotome, whom offers him to create “slaves” and lures the human to Manticore. This narrative takes a big chunk in episode 2, and the string of disappearances from those girls (why not boys?) cause two other main plot threads, which are 1) Boogiepop comes into the picture by using the body of Touka Miyashita and 2) Kamakishiro meets Echoes one day and informs the eccentric Nagi Kirima to investigate before spirited away herself.

Nagi Kirimi emegers to be one of the real protagonist in the first arc. She’s also one of the most interesting character out there. Always considered herself of eccentric, she learns from Kamishikiro about Manticore, and gets suspended herself so that she can follow around the “slaves” and makes sure if they were Manticore. Kazuko Suema (a girl with glasses) makes a brief entrance when she follows up on Kirimi’s action. As of now I believe Suema, Kirimi and Miyashita are the main players in this whole universe.

Kamikishiro’s encounter with Echoes prove to be one of the important plot points for this arc. She’s an interesting character so it’s a shame that she’s killed off quickly and I still feel like I haven’t spent that much time with her (in fact from what I heard they cut many of her scenes and even an entire character was cut off). Her disappearance though, triggers her younger boyfriend Tanaka and Niitoki the President of the Discipline Committee, tagged along by Saotome, to search for her around school. Episode 3 comes into a climax where Saotome locates Echoes and Kirimi, slits the latter’s throat, and lets Manticore to kill his original self. Echoes “commits suicide” by becoming a pillar of light to transmit himself back to his world. You know the rest of the story so I don’t need to recap it here. Personally, I feel a bit underwhelmed by this sudden ending, but I gotta say it never fails to intrigue me. One of the fun in watching this anime is to make sense of what is going on and how a piece of information fits into the big picture. The story holds up for me so far, so it all depends how the execution gonna be like. While I feel that the characters can be stiff at times, and I’m a tad bit disappointed that the adapatation doesn’t follow the source that faithfully, Boogiepop still delivers many striking moments and so far they keep the mysterious atmosphere right. Just remember, all we see within an episode is always just snapshots of what is happening.

CHANGE USERNAME
Lenlo
That was an interesting comparison. Cool to see how far anime has come.
Lenlo
I cant wait to watch Kaze Fui tonight to answer those questions Kazier!
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Someone has done a comparison video for Dororo for a scene in the new one, comparing it with the old one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j38anJY3BtA
Kaiser-Eoghan
Maybe some people found the flashback scenes too dramatic, but I didn't mind, they worked for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo:One thing that has come to mind, how would it go if he encountered the coach again, but in the present?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo:I also liked how the flashback was done in a grainy looking style.
If I found someone who was finding it hard to get into this show, I think that this episode would win them over and it’s the episode I found myself feeling the most.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Episode 13 of Kaze ga tsuyoku is the fitting and perfect culmination of what has come before it and all is now essentially out on the table dramatically and all the better for it because of how well this series has built itself up.
Animosh
In essence it is still a battle shounen though: even if the fights always have narrative weight (it's not just fighting for the sake of fighting), the characters are to a significant extent developed through fights. So if that's not your thing it might be a hard sell even with its amazing animation and sympathetic cast.
Animosh
@Lenlo/Kaiser: the problem with Mob though is that its first two episodes are by far the worst of the series. So if you give it a try you should watch at least until the third episode, and possibly even episode 4/5 (since it's the first really good arc of the series imo).
Animosh
Yeah, it must be tough to blog three shows in the span of two days, especially with how long your posts tend to be. I find it hard enough already just to keep up with everything!
Lenlo
Ugh. Didnt get to Kaze Fui tonight. A shame. This whole Dororo/MobPsycho then Kaze Fui air schedule is gonna be a pain. You can expect Kaze Fui's maybe... Thurs? Not sure yet. Busy night
Kaiser-Eoghan
*newer not old
Kaiser-Eoghan
Some additional things I always notice in certain things, sometimes in these old medieval films or shows, in the American ones the characters occassionally don't look earthy enough.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Koyomi from clannad i mean
Kaiser-Eoghan
Somewhere in my head Koyomi is this weird anime take on an autist.
Amagi
All she did what stupid, but everyone was saying that she was a genius that would probably soon develope the theory of eversthing so it must be real even if she's only ever smart when the plots needs her to do some sudden computer hack or something.
Amagi
Smart characters can only be written by smart writers. So sometimes writers just tell that the characters are smart but you don't actually witness it. It's either shown by using such wise one liners or just because someone else is telling the audience they're smart. Reminds me of that one Kyoani genius girl.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Can't do the walk, don't do the talk.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can buy it more for a tough old dude.
Kaiser-Eoghan
On more thought, alot of it has to do with who is saying them. Men who look like children with no charisma.
Amagi
I absolutely hate these one liners too. Especially when you can already hear them in the trailer.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I hate it when scripts coverup for awful characters by spamming quips at you.
Amagi
It's why I dislike so much stuff that gets released today. All these run-of-the-mills, copies, clones, alternative universes, sequels and so on.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But, beyond cgi, its the modern take wise-ass stuff that drives me nuts.
Amagi
Even if you're just drawing a landscape you need creativity. Where are the shadows, the lighting, what atmosphere should it trigger and so on. Maybe even a hidden motif.
Kaiser-Eoghan
ANARCHY KINO-MACHE!
Amagi
Yeah creativity is, well, should be among the most important things out there. I mean movies, anime, etc are actual art, art is meaningless without creativity. At least the narrating type of art.
Amagi
Kinda miss these anime. They're rare to begin with but I can't imagine anyone creating such a thing nowadays. Like Blame/Ergo/Texhno, even Lain. They never sold though, so I can even kind of understand it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ergo worked for me up until the ending.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think clever is too often a miused word by people when they describe things. They reduce it to being "Just a smart storyline", when really it is more suited a word to something in tune with its creative side.
Amagi
Ergo Proxy even had a dense/heavy plot that was developing while you're busy figuring the setting out. And many things were shown indirectly. It was one of the rare anime I had to watch twice to get it. Texhnolyze is also such a thing but more bizarre in my opinion, less logical than Ergo, but still great.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Its really really nice knowing that I can talk to someone like you about this on my level .
Amagi
It's why I love series with strong settings so much. See Blame for example. Even Made in Abyss. You never know what kind of landscape you will see next and in Blame everything is fucked to behin with.
Amagi
Yeah. Well we do watch movies to feel excitement, and you can't really feel that if you can guess what happens next.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Now obviously these types of things can end up a coin toss of it either works or it doesn't, but I appreciate the risk taken.
Amagi
I tolerate it for games because whereas I still don't like it there, at least the game as an additional value which is the gameplay. So even with weak atmosphere I am still enjoying it for being a good game. But when I watch a movie I want get sucked in to some degree instead of being aware that I am just the audience (or the player).
Kaiser-Eoghan
I like that feeling of I don't know whats going to happen next.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I like the idea of a madman getting to do a movie and running with his imagination.
Amagi
It's like dreaming and suddently hearing your real life cat meowing and realising that it's just a dream, you're in the bed and about to wake up. And yes this is exactly why I dislike CGI
Kaiser-Eoghan
But sometimes people cry pretentious wrongly, when there wasn't really any intended thing to get.
Amagi
It's why I am so easily angered over little errors or writing problems. Because they destroy the atmosphere more than anything else.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I mean, I do like themes, characters etc, but my favourite experience is nightmare/dreamscapes.
Amagi
If the atmosphere is missing it doesn't matter what story you are telling, everything feels kinda hollow. Doesn't mean that show with weak atmo and great plot is bad, but it would be ten times better with the proper atmosphere.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I hate this modern idea of "It HAS to be coherent or mean something or follow some kind of linear or logical thing or some kind of rules"
Amagi
@Kaiser: Yeah it's why I often say that atmosphere is the most important part of a story, actually.
Kaiser-Eoghan
With cgi I am constantly reminded I am watching a film.
Amagi
Don't know all of the titles you mentioned, will probably look into a few of those I don't know.
Kaiser-Eoghan
What I love about these old slavic art films, is no longer being aware of the world around me when I watch them. They use actual crafted cinematography so they can still feel like you're living it, despite being so unreal.
Amagi
Technobabylon and Gemini Rue are my favorites. These games capture this fucked up feeling of noir-punk and dark cyberpunk perfectly and have a bunch of great twists and character arcs.
Amagi
I like this type of darkness somehow, as well as trash punk and noir stuff. I do enjoy the Wadjet Eyes games for that reason.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Naturally I loved both
Kaiser-Eoghan
Hard to be God and On the silver globe are insane, there's this sense of what the utter hell am I watching? But you feel like you've been transported someone else entirely.
Amagi
"We" (Мы) is also a Russian dystopia novel, it shared a bunch of similarities with 1984 but was written long before Orwell had had even started with 1984.
Amagi
STALKER has also made me check out a bunch of Russian/Ukrainian novels. I love their ideas. Their dystopias and everything.
Amagi
Slavs are doing good games right now. Looking forward playing this Russia Fallout clone.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can't remember the name of the Soviet animation with the robot that keeps on working after everyone's dead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But crappy puns aside. Dead mans letters, letters never sent, Ivan's child hood, Andreii Rublev, Cranes are flying and I am Cuba have amazing cinematography.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wanna b a Potemkin master....
....like no-one ever was =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
Dead mans letters is up there with Threads as being one of the best apocalypse films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*evangelion
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or would that be Nyguen genesis Evagelion =)
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: You'll always be my ho chi main man minh Mario =)
SuperMario
I love Soviet cinema. Yeah the Mirror has that monochrome part. And they aren’t that big as they used to be but Soviet animation has great history
Kaiser-Eoghan
Stalker is an excellent science fiction film and not neccesarily because of need to anaylze it, but because it works of a visual-psychic level.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Zerkalo/mirror is a great example of this, just a stream of the directors thoughts, all visual impressionism, there might be a scene where I couldn't tell you the why or the what, but it'd make me feel something.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Basically where to understand, is simply to feel.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Its always fascinating that some filmakers have the ability to just let the film wash over you and move you with intricately crafted arthouse visuals. That they can do that, without character arcs/intellectual message/monologues.
Amagi
Speaking of soviet stuff I kinda want another movie or maybe even a cartoon like some of these old soviet movies that were partly monochrome and partly colored during important scenes. Didn't solaris have that too? - I know the monochrome parts were done to save money, but it was kinda impressive seeing colorless movies turning colorful ones during emotional scenes.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Definately something that would appeal to me in terms of alternate style of animation. I'm actually quite a fan of different, out there animation styles.
Lenlo
Heres the ED
Lenlo
Yup, paint on glass. The entire ED for the first season was done in that style. Mob loves to use obscure or generally unusual art styles to sell the other worldlyness of its spirits.
Kaiser-Eoghan
That sounds pretty cool.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Excuse me....paint on glass effects in Mob? There was a Soviet animator that used that style.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*earlier
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Again you psychically read my mind =P I was just thinking that about Farnese arlier.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I think I've accepted there are some manga I need to wait until they're finished before go back to them either due to slow scans or because they've gone on so long or go on hiatus.
Amagi
I think the later half as well as the hiatus killed it for me. Can't deal with that two chapters per year policy.
Lenlo
I, however, am still a rabid Berserk fanboy. :D
Amagi
I am also never a fan of characters completely changing personalities once they're redeemed. Farnese was an interesting villain and while I agree that she needed to overcome her trauma the current Farnese is just some soulless helpful big sister type. She only exists to care for Cjaskar and at some point even Cjaskar's eternal problem was starting to get on my nerves.
Amagi
@Kaiser: Same opinion on Berserk again. The arc before that with the inquisition tower was one of the highpoints of the manga, everything went downhill once Schierke had joined which is kinda sad since it was one of my favorite series before that.
Lenlo
Mob is much more character focused than OPM. OPM riffs on Shounen, while Mob is a much more character driven drama kinda series, with shounen elements. I would give it a shot for an episode or two.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Berserk started losing me when he started travelling around with those kids.
@Amagi/Animosh: Do you believe that Mob has better choreography than onepunch?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi:I will give exceptions to magical elements if a show can produce an adventure narrative worthwhile or if it’s a magical girl show.
If magic is featured in an occult horror fashion or in an exploitative way, I will also lean toward allowing it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: While I very much doubt Mob would be my thing, given how I generally felt indifferent to onepunch man and bias against shounen action, yes the art for Mob, when elevated by an anime adaptation lends itself to something unique looking and I can praise that.
Lenlo
I think ONE's style fits Mob better, and Murata's style fits OPM better. So yeah, Bones chose well on that front
Amagi
Not only are overdesigned characters really bad for movement which is actually needed to make a series and their characters feel alive but they also often look really bad in my opinion and there is a limit on how overdesigned a character can be until I stop taking them seriously at all.
Amagi
Yeah. I also honestly think that many anime are suffering from overdesigning.
Animosh
And I like Mob's artstyle a lot as well. It gives the series a unique look, and it gives the animators all the freedom they could wish for to play around with the characters (and basically everything else) as they see fit. Add Bones to the mix, and you have one of the best-looking series out there.
Animosh
I prefer the full ONE experience too. It's part of the reason why I slightly prefer Mob Psycho. OPM looks great and all, but there's way too much meaningless fighting going on in the manga lately. I prefer the tighter and more consistently subversive storytelling of the webcomic, although I still enjoy the manga a lot as well (and the story climaxes in particular tend to look freaking amazing).
Amagi
Different example since this is actual fantasy but I also prefered the early Berserk series over the later parts. When the supernatural horror stuff was more of a hidden thing appearing around Guts and otherwise just on special occasions, while most people didn't even believe such things exist. I prefer that over the high (dark) fantasy we have now although I get what Miura is aiming at.
Amagi
I guess I just have a thing for this secret-club mentality. I prefer it over worlds with blatan magical powers everyone uses and knows about.
Amagi
It's weird but I almost always hate anime with and about magic, the more fantasy it is the less I like it (usually, not always), but then again occult stuff is always totally my thing.
Amagi
I am quite happy they stick with the original Mob Psycho designs from ONE for this series. The OPM manga is probably one of the best looking things out there but ONE's artstyle has a lot of charme and makes characters more unique, especially if looks as polished as in the anime adaption.
Lenlo
Mmm cant wait to watch it. Kaze Fui, still great
Anonymous3309336
I really like how Kurahana admitted that he let his emotions get to him when he threw that punch at the coach back then. Now he feels remorseful about that day and how he made enemies from his former teammates.
Anonymous3309336
Meanwhile, looks like the next episode will focus on Prince again and his attempts to further improve his time.
Anonymous3309336
Meanwhile, his new teammates understand the pain he's been going through and want him to move on from that. Definitely as some of the best writing of this season.
Anonymous3309336
That punch he threw at the coach was certainly well-deserved, but I can see why the other teammates including Sakaki would come to despise him.
Anonymous3309336
This episode of Kaze ga... was great as always, as we see more of Kurahana's past and how his awful coach made Sakaki and the rest of his former team turn on him.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wouldn't have minded reading several volumes of seeing Satou on the run.
Animosh
Thanks! That's good to know. An alternate ending could have been fun, but I suppose the ending of the anime was fitting, and if it ain't broke don't fix it.
Amagi
Looks like it's going to end. I guess it ends the same but we can't say for sure yet.
Animosh
For those of you still reading Happy Sugar Life: is the manga continuing past the anime? Or does it look like it's going to end in the same way? If it takes a different path it might be worth checking it out.
Anonymous3307077
children of the whales
Lenlo
Holy crap. Mob Psycho 100 is the best thing since sliced bread. BONES thank you.

And thanks Kaiser!
Amagi
well we have a döner kebab ship at least.
Amagi
I am from Frankfurt, another one of the biggest German cities but there isn't much to see here aside from skyscrapers and banks.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*had **taught
Kaiser-Eoghan
I hah had some notion that the Japanese didn't really know English or it wasn't well thought over there?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Lenlo's taste continues to be impeccably based.
Kaiser-Eoghan
lol I thought coolass47 was covering Kaguya.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Germany, both Koln and Berlin, especially Koln felt like a home to me and felt the less alienating/foreign.
Kaiser-Eoghan
.....probably embarassing but, I think I'd be put off sleeping on the floor in a futon or using one of those weird Japanese toilets.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Truly I am the Kaiser Eoghan.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Beyond that I've been to Belgium, Spain, France, Italy, Northern Ireland and Wales.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've never been outside of Europe. I didn't have problems getting around Germany though when I went because my then girlfriend was from there and I knew enough to cope on a Holiday.
Amagi
also no matter which country I visited till now people were always friendly
Amagi
Yeah, now thinking about it, I could even find everything in Iran so I guess Japan should work too. Most people knew enough random English or German words to somehow lead you to the place and you want to visit unless it's some really weird relief or a small town that's difficult to reach but tourists usually stick with the big stuff.
SuperMario
... years ago and Japan is pretty safe and the signs are easy to follow in general. Even the locals who don’t speak English they are pretty friendly and help you the best they can. You don’t need to be worry on that front
SuperMario
I did it alone few
Amagi
Not sure how he did it (he went completely alone too) but it seems to be possible somehow. Not sure if I would make it though.
Amagi
Someone I know managed it alone and he isn't even that good in English.
Lenlo
I think I can manage. Lots of English signage in places like the rail systems and such. That plus the small amount I am learning in preparation and how much english they teach them over there, I should be ok
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Do you feel you'd be able to get by in Japan? As far as I know you don't speak any Japanese.
Animosh
Mob was great again too. The adaptation is really knocking it out of the park. And looks like we'll be getting one of my favorite side stories next week.
Animosh
I love how upbeat Slime continues to be. If only all wars were resolved like this. And then he goes on to improve everyone's lives by building homes, infrastructure, and coalitions based on common interests? Rimuru for president!
Anonymous3303364
I retired from the force in middle school enjoying my retirement, I still see the faces of the comrades we lost when we defeated the big bad and saved the world, I haven't seen my cute marketable mascot in 3 years, but I like this new life I'm living, I thought I found peace but the battlefield always calls out to me, why? Because war never changes.
Anonymous3303364
I love this comment since it's more well put on what this dark magical girls show really is:
Vonter
Perhaps in ten years when the next trope comes. I wonder if some will look back to the tropes from now with different eyes. Like they say, you don't know what you have until you lose it.
Vonter
Yeah, maybe I could watch some of that schlock. In a way some of it has become more endearing over time. Since times have changed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Vampire wars was fantastic though, used shitfuck as a word from what I remember.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Yes! Finally they're saying it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Watching a compiliation of dub cursings for angel cop, not enough F-bombs yet.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I always wish some of these old ovas got to go on for longer, especially AD police and bubblegum crisis. I'd have loved a full gunsmith cats or riding bean show.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have to watch Angel cop some day I really do.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I think vonter, if magical girl ops can't achieve the exploi angle then it has failed all the further. We'll have to see.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: I was disappointed when I saw the more modern anime! Because it didn't have the art I liked in the ovas.
Vonter
I do remember now. Did you watched the Birdy The Mighty OVA (not the series, the OVA). That one I remember liking because it was cheesy, visceral, had IMO better designs for the aliens than the ones in the TV series and I digged the dynamic of the two leads. However it was cut short. Perhaps it was too derivative for the time.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Sometimes I can actually take ridiculousness much better when its a live action exploitation thing if it happens to fail in animated form. That Jeanne d'arc anime and maybe magical girl spec ops would have made hilarious 60s/70s Eurotrash films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
One of the only modern anime to do the exploitation angle right was Freezing.
Vonter
I want to believe there's something like that already out. But I'm blocked. I can only mention that I now want to rewatch some of Devilman Lady. It does have a female lead battling monsters with an 80s sci fi horror vibe, I don't know it reminds me for some reason to movies like Godzilla 1985 or King Kong Lives.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Or go mental.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Thats one I still need to get around to. If I have to have a darker magical thing, it either has to be camp and goofy enough while taking itself dead seriously or keep some of the fun .
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - If you haven't check a couple of episodes of Lady Devilman. Despite being formulaic, the monsters on that anime are really well made and feel creative, morbid and creepy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: lol Damn, now I want to see Go Nagai's take of Magical girl ops.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I love how some old ovas would sometimes take place in America, but in this IDEA of it, getting it wrong.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: I love how they added in those stupid curse words every few minutes aswell, wonderfully incompotent.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Mad bull 34 was lovingly perverse , like a Japanese equivalent to those wonderful Italian police things.
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