Posted on 28 June 2017 with categories: Anime Reviews, Little Witch Academia

The Little Witch Academia series has been something that’s a long time coming. Ever since Studio Trigger made the original Anime OVA back in 2013 I have been hotly anticipating the time when it would be fleshed out into it’s own anime series. I love both the original OVA and the enchanted Parade so this series was one I was really looking forward to. So the question remains. Is Little Witch Academia a good series? Absolutely, out of the 25 episodes of it’s runtime I only didn’t enjoy one episode. This series was very fun and a worthwhile watch. However, is Little Witch Academia a great series? And therein lies the greatest problem with this series as a whole. For you see my friends, Little Witch Academia holds the potential for greatness and very closely skirts the line to becoming a truly great series. There are standout episodes which show a small glimmer of what this series could have really been. However instead the series plays it safe and sticks to a rather cartoonish format of episodic stories. It’s excellent character cast is unfortunately underutilised aside from some single episode stories and the main plot it develops within it’s second half more or less fizzles out into something more tame.

So to those watching it can be frustrating to see how this series opens up roads to great storytelling possibilities only to take the road of least resistance. Thus my greatest advice to any viewer is to not let yourself be fooled into thinking that this show will have a dynamic shift into a greater story arc. Throughout it’s run this is a simple story with simple objectives. Thus if you can come to accept that then you can enjoy what Little Witch Academia has to offer. Again, this really is a good show and has the kind of fun sensibility that very few anime can pull off. It’s a show that wouldn’t look out of place if put in a Saturday morning cartoon block and for those that woke up on mornings to tune into these kinds of shows as kids it will certainly hit that sentimental spot. If you aren’t part of that demographic then this may be a harder sell as I could see others get tired of the inconsequential episodic stories and a general lack of character development. Some characters get small changes but for the most part have simple characterisation. Akko in particular tends to have sporadic development as she tends to waver between growing as a person and then falling into her old ways.

Animation can have hiccups but is pretty stellar and charming throughout the board. You can really tell that a lot of heart went into this series production, even if it likely drove the animators to exhaustion. This show has it’s fair share of Sakuga sequences that show there is some real talent at Trigger. There are also references galore throughout the series from callouts to old cartoons(Hanna Barbara, Disney, Dexters lab) to previous trigger works and to even oddballs like 1984, Pawn Stars, Hellboy and Dinotopia. Keep a keen eye and you can spot dozens of callouts within the framework. OST is suitable but has some great versions of the main theme and a very good opening theme. Overall I do recommend this series. It isn’t what it could have been but what it is is hardly anything to scoff at. It’s one of the surprisingly few anime you can show to a young child without worry and maybe even blossom another fan of this medium. If you feel burned out by current anime and need something that’s a bit of a change of pace then LIttle Witch Academia is a fine recommendation indeed.

Posted on with categories: Currently Watching:, Little Witch Academia

I am glad that Trigger managed to pull through and bring a bombastic finale to this series. Admittedly there are some signs of cutting corners with some still frames that lingered for a little too long but otherwise this was a great episode to go out on. That said i do have my problems with the final villain being some random program of Croix’s going out of control and attempting to start a world war. Introducing a rogue element when the entire second half of the season has been building up Croix as the main villain is somewhat cheap. Now that it’s all over it really makes Croix to be a major idiot who had no idea what she was doing and why didn’t Chariot stop her before it escalated to this point again? Well I do like Akko insinuating that they are all the brand new nine witches as it does suggest that the original nine witches were also a ragtag group elevated to legendary status. Having the entire crew play a part in the final episode was also something I really appreciated as it’s nice to have them do something after being brutally ignored by the show for so long.

So our ending does at least leave some room for a sequel though it’s not a bad way to finish the series right here. Personally I would be on board for a sequel despite my discontent with how the series turned out. I still believe that this series has great potential and a second season could really begin to bank on that potential now that this Croix and Chariot business is out of the way. In particular I would really love more scenes like the end of this episode, with all the character interacting with each other. Quite honestly, that’s what this series needed more of. Still I did truly love seeing trigger crank up the insanity to 180 and make the finale explosively fun. Highlights being the combined Akko and Diana Shiny Arc, the return of the shooting star and frankly the entire end sequence. Magic turned out to be in the hearts of the masses after all which really makes me think that Croix is pretty poor Scientist to not try to look for safer magic alternatives. The reveal of a believing heart being magic is rather cliche and a deus ex machina but I am more than willing to give it a pass just on how they managed to run with it.

As a final note I would like to take my hat off to Asenshi subs for succeeding where Netflix’s failed. As anyone who has kept up with this series likely knows, Netflix has licensed the series and in a truly boneheaded move has not simulcast it as it airs. The only legal means of keeping up with the series is to wait till the 30th of June where you will only get 13 out of the 25 not aired episodes at once. Considering the delay on release I would better see these things dubbed. If Netflix is to be a major player in anime simulcasting then they really need to sort out a model that benefits online internet discussion. I do not deny the benefits of binge watching shows but there are those of us that like following the discussions that aside from weekly watching. Having the series at once really kills any mid series theorising and makes it that you can only talk about the show as a whole rather than individual episodes. I believe it really killed the momentum that this series could have had. So I wholeheartedly give my thanks to Asenshi subs to allow me to experience this show as it airs and not to mention their top notch sub work. Truly they went the extra mile to give this show the quality it deserves. So much so that I think official subs will end up inferior to their fantastic work. Honestly guys, you did the anime community one hell of a favor. Thanks for that.

Posted on 20 June 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Little Witch Academia

Hmmm….mixed feelings. There are parts I like about this episode but then there is this underwhelming feeling over how things have turned out. In general I like that the epicly named world reconstruction magic turned out to be just a stick that performs party tricks. Thinking about it it’s likely the decline of magic is due to people just not having much faith in it anymore. So the real means of bringing magic back to the world is just what Chariot was doing, showing the world just how great it is. I like that sentiment, there are no quick fixes in the world. Instead worldwide problems are solved with effort and perseverance. Plus seeing Croix utterly devastated about how she pretty much started a war to get a hold of a stick that blows bubbles is delicious karmic retribution. But what was with that battle at the start of the this episode. I was honestly confused to see Chariot pull out a lightsaber of all things and start doing shadow clone jutsu. I was under the impression that magic in this universe required some kind of activation word.

However we have spent half a season building up Croix and the grand triskelion for this moment. Thus with one episode the main concerns of the plot that sacrificed the rest of the casts screentime has more or less been resolved in about five minutes. Akko forgives chariot, gains the last word, Croix is defeated and all is sunny in LWA land. Well besides the demonic nuke going somewhere but we will get to that. The conclusion to this whole affair is just to neat and clean. In particular I find Croix’s change of heart to be too little too late for the story has already gone to lengths to convince us that she’s a irredeemable bitch. She had a moment or two of showing compassion for Chariot but it really isn’t enough to cancel out her evil power trip at the beginning of the episode. I mean she’s surprised that the giant evil as all hell robot started going berserk? You even called the thing the Noir rod so it’s just really stupid that you didn’t realise that you might be on the wrong track. Perhaps she was working with the ends justify the means logic and hoping the grand reconstruction magic would erase all her own wrongdoings. But she’s not the only one at fault here, after all Chariot could have tried to stop this at any time. Yet never did. Are we sure she’s not somewhat evil here?

I can’t be the only annoyed that the entire cast of characters made it to the grand Triskelion and did absolutely nothing. I mean they did so much more when getting the scorers stone from Fafner and speaking of which, what happened to that Dragon? I thought he was going to play a big role but he ended up a one episode deal. Come on Trigger, we could have had the gang fend off the dark dragon while Akko charges up an attack! Sure they don’t have magic at the moment but they could just as easily explain that away by having Croix turn on their routers or magic being in the air or something. We got one episode left so I hope they don’t spend it being a peanut gallery. I did like the conversation between Chariot and Akko as it was a good way to get the last word. Felt a little rushed but I am willing to give a pass on that. So we got one more episode to go and a missile to stop which make this the last time Trigger can really go all out with this show. Some are debating that one of the things mentioned in the book Lotte reads(About Belle tossing aside a nuke) is going to turn out prophetic. I would love to see Trigger go over the top but based on previous experience with this show it’s likely not going to get that insane. But I am more than willing to bet that Shooting Star is going to be in the final episode. That Chekhov’s gun has been ready since episode 3.

Posted on 14 June 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Little Witch Academia

As we near the end of this show I have come to realise that this story has the habit of building up my expectations only to let me down. There have been several points where it felt like this show was going to great heights, only for it to crash back down. Last episode I praised the twist of the true nature of Chariots shows and how this changed Ursula’s character as a whole. This episode meanwhile goes to great lengths to remove any moral complexity that the previous revelation hinted at. Did Chariot resort to abusing the dreams of her fans in desperation to open the grand triskelion? Is there more to Croix than than being a evil villain? Is Croix merely repeating Chariots previous mistake? The answer is no, nope and nah. What really happened was that Chariot had no idea about the consequences of dream magic and Croix is just a irredeemable bitch. That’s a relief, we almost had some character depth there. Really this just feels like the most dull answer and I really am tired of these heroes who are made out to have commited some great crime only for it to turn out to be something completely out of their control.

But out of the revelations in this episode, the one that really killed it was the explanation behind why Chariot lost her powers and the mark on the moon. Now when you have something like a scar on the moon you often assume that it was created in some epic battle to the death. It’s the moon after all and with how throughout this series Chariot has been presented as some major badass in the know about ancient secrets and I thought that the moon scar would be part of one of her great exploits. I even heard tell of people making theories that Chariot was gathering dream power to fight off Anti-spirals in space. Now as ludicrous(And frankly, amazing) that sounds, it at least is a far more interesting explanation than we got here. As it turns out, Chariot wasn’t a badass but instead a entertainer. The moon scar was the result of her desperately trying to entertain a crowd with impressive magic. So the scar on the moon and the cause of her loss of powers was in fact, a misfired magic trick. Sure that’s unexpected but in the way that you would buy a new game console and find out it’s just a hollow case with nothing inside kind of unexpected. There are dozens of explanations that could have been better than this and by all account this is a really mundane development to come from trigger of all people.

Well it’s not all bad. I rather like how Akko was cheered up though I really think Diana should have had a bit more of a reaction to Ursula explaining that she was the cause of her losing her magic briefly. I also thought that her revealing herself as a Chariot fan would have more impact as well. Actually thinking about it the whole jealousy over Akko being closer to Chariot really didn’t turn out to be much, did it? Still at least they are not going to milk Akko’s depression for a couple of episodes and having her friends come to collect her was quite heartwarming. I thought that was going to be a pretty big deal in the first episodes of the series. I like that the gang is getting all together for the finale and I at least hope that’s going to be an explosive finish.

Posted on 8 June 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Little Witch Academia

Might I add that the animation of these two episodes was quite spectacular. The second episode in particular had a level of fluid motion when Akko fought against Croix that it makes me wish technology could move to a point that such movement could be achieved in anime without putting animators on deathwatch. One thing I found in these episodes is that Lotte and Sucy look to be close to fading into the background much like the enchanted Parade crew as they don’t play much of role in Akko’s quest to gather the words. Indeed Akko, Ursula and Croix seem to be in the main spotlight with perhaps Diana playing a small part. Really I believe that Little Witch Academia isn’t making full use of the cast of characters it has built up and there are episodes which could have greatly benefited from other characters taking a more active role.

It is not often that I am blindsided by a twist in a story. That may sound like bragging but in all my years of watching media I have come to get a general idea of how things play out. Of course I cannot predict with 100% accuracy what can come to pass in a show but I have gotten to a point of not being very surprised by it. Even if I don’t pick up on foreshadowing, with my regular trips to check out opinions on reddit often point out things that I miss. So having the real reason behind Chariots magic shows be something of a much sinister nature really was something I never considered. In truth I was hoping that Chariots reveal to Akko would be more…for lack of a better word…epic but this reveal does make the whole story make a lot more sense. Suddenly Urusala’s reluctance to reveal herself, her care for Akko and her drive to awaken the words are given a deeper context within the narrative. One thing that really is effected by this is Chariots show in the very first episode where the intervention of the Croix like creature may have been Croix herself attempting to prevent Chariot from stealing the magic of the audience. I honestly never saw this coming and the only thing I managed to guess was that Chariot really was responsible for the mark on the moon.

We at least know the full details of Croix’s plan now, that being to rile people up into a frenzy in order to gather their emotions to open her own grand triskelion. Essentially in part repeating the mistake that Chariot made in drawing magic out of people. Though in this case to a more negative degree. It’s clear that Croix doesn’t quite know what she’s messing with and i say any magic that glows blood red and is taken from negative emotions is not going to be some world saving solution. She’s clearly fueled by envy over not being chosen as well as her own pride so I am certain her little experiment is going to backfire on her, hard. But there are small signs that despite how antagonist she is being to Chariot that she still does care about her. When she managed to knock Ursula off her broom she actually panicked and tried to save her from falling. Her anger seems directed at Claimh Solas and Woodward rather that Chariot. So I think she might not even up this series final boss after all. Andrew also gets a moment or two here with him encouraging Akko for once and perhaps he might be the one to knock her out of her current funk. Or Diana might be a better option in that regard.

Posted on 24 May 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Little Witch Academia

This episode has really nailed home for me just how defanging Diana has been a bad choice. In the OVA episodes Diana was bratty and stuck up but at least then she had character. In the TV series she’s more or less a mary sue through and through which is sadly a much more boring characteristic. When comparing how the two clash in both continuities it felt more animated in the OVA’s whereas Diana’s talks here are more exasperated. When you have a high energy character like Akko then I think the best foil is someone who is equally as outspoken. Compare the bickering at the end of this episode to that of the bickering at the end of the first OVA and I think you might see what I am getting at. It is good that we have awakened another word and only have two left for Akko to unlock the seal. The key to this one seems to be Akko relating Diana’s efforts to keep the history of the cavendish family from dying out to the pursuit of her own dream.

As predicted the evil Aunt tries to interfere with Diana taking the ritual and in all honestly I don’t know why this comes as a surprise to anyone. Both Akko and Edward are shocked to hear this as is the maid but when you get down to it then if her Aunt didn’t do something then that would be surprising. Did they really think she was just going to sit back and let Diana take the head position from her? With Diana being as perfect as she is I just don’t get how she couldn’t see this coming. Animation was up to the usual trigger standard with the broom sequence being quite excellent.

In the end the status quo wins. Diana gets to back to school and Daryl looks to have had a change of heart. Besides unlocking a word this little adventure hasn’t changed the norm. Maybe Diana and Akko will be closer after this? Chances are that’s not going to be the case. We did get to learn a little more about Diana with this episode. Things like her temporarily losing her magic when she was a child. This is likely the point she became a fan of Shiny Chariot. There is also her history lesson on the Cavendish family acting as war medics during wars which is rather fascinating. I wonder if witches took part in the fighting as well? Based on what they are capable of they would be formable weapons in a war.

It is rather odd to have this kind of seriousness when most of the violence in the series is treated with cartoon logic. Well we have five episodes of little Witch Academia left and it’s only now that Netflix announces that they plan to release the first cour on their service on June 30. Likely dubbed as they have with other anime releases. I must say that if Netflix will continue with licensing anime then they need to rethink how they release it. The binge format has its good points but when it comes to online discussion then it kills any talk about individual episodes. People accuse this of killing the momentum of Relife and Little Witch Academia which I would be inclined to agree. I think Netflix should consider a simudub strategy much like Funimation. It is great to see more companies jump into licensing anime but with the methods Amazon strike and Netflix are making use of it’s proving to make things more difficult for those who don’t wish to obtain anime on the high seas. Regardless I am looking forward to giving this show a rewatch dubbed when it does come out next month.

Posted on 17 May 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Little Witch Academia

It’s time for the Diana episode and it’s a two parter no less. This episode was mainly a setup to the next one but we did learn a couple of things here. One is that Diana is indeed a former Chariot fan as she possesses the one card that Akko doesn’t have. I honestly think that card is going to end up getting shown to Akko at some point though I don’t think it has a word of Arcturus on it. If anything the tapestry that was shown in the beginning and was one of the items her aunt tried to pawn off appears to have the word that Akko is looking for. Other thing revealed is that Diana is not as well off as she first appeared to be with her family assets getting sold off by her Aunt. Makes me think that Akko is deeply regretting that Aristocrat remark she made during the fairy strike. Speaking of Diana’s aunt, I like to think that she is a character who absorbed the original bitch tendencies of Diana’s OVA self. Still I admit she’s a pretty weak villain character to introduce at this stage. I don’t disagree with her assessment on charity not being the best way to keep yourself afloat but her solution is full of holes. It’s an odd thing to outright dismiss the legacy of her family when her very well being depends on her selling off the heirlooms that the legacy gathered.

Another thing of note is a prediction that Diana made earlier in the series. She previously predicted using magic that Akko would leave the school however with her dropping out from school to take on the duties of the family head it appears that prediction was actually meant for her. Her position when compared to Akko is interesting as her mother also tasked her with bringing magic back to the world. I feel that that was a missed opportunity in this series up to this point to display how she came to accept Akko  as the one to gather the words. Diana has been a bit too mary sue for my liking so to actually see some internal conflict would have been nice rather than just have her jump straight to the resolution. After all Akko is the one to fulfill her mother’s dying wish, Akko is the one chosen by the Shiny Rod, Akko is the one being tutored by her childhood hero…Akko has essentially inherited the position that Diana originally aimed for and quite frankly she is inferior in all aspects to Diana herself. Shouldn’t there be some frustration? Envy? She has shown to be dissatisfied with how Akko is doing things and the occasional wayward look but I think her arc should have been something much more than this. Back on episode two I originally thought that would be so.

Based on the opening and the parallels between Akko and Diana to Ursula and Croix then i would say she’s bound to play a big role in the finale of this series. So perhaps these episodes are to build the relationship between the two so that they can clash/work together for whatever Croix is planning. It was nice to see Diana not put up with her Aunt mocking Akko and Andrew certainly seems to be willing to help Akko out whenever he can. Or maybe he just felt like annoying Diana. Either way the problem her is Diana’s aunt and she’s clearly doing to do something to stop Diana from inheriting the position of family head. Perhaps she’s not quite as evil as she appears and they may somehow give her a change of heart. But seeing as her familiar is a snake and her first introduction involved her having glowing red eyes and slipping into the darkness then I think her defeat is not going to be through words. The question is whether Diana will return to Luna Nova through some condition where she can continue her education while being family head? Or will she no longer be a part of the school from this point forward as she previously intended?

Posted on 11 May 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Little Witch Academia

Did you know that the animation team that worked on this previously worked on Gurren Lagann? Of course you did but I say anyone clueless would have caught onto it just by this episode alone. So Constanze finally gets her time to shine and she’s just as lovable as I remember. Akko was a little annoying at the beginning of this episode with her constant screwups but that went away when she actually started helping Constanze instead of just pulling a Dexter and Dede routine. Seeing Constanze warm up to her was nice and the Gainax mecha anime references at the end of the episode really made it. We got Evangelion, Gunbuster, Gurren Lagann and even Akko doing the classic Gainax pose. The wild hunt itself seems to be a callout to eSports but I don’t think we got an explanation on why it takes place besides entertainment. There were a number of noticeable still frames this week so I wonder if that was to account for the mecha action scene or are things getting a bit tight at Studio trigger? Just how they can bring the bring guns for the rest of the season. All and all, I got my Constanze episode so I am pretty happy with that.

Still questioning just why Ursula continues to do absolutely nothing about Croix but at least this episode she went to call her out on her wrong doing. From what can be gathered from their talk, it seems her goal in these random experiments is to collect emotion. In this case she stirred up trouble to collect emotion from the crowd. Her endgame isn’t clear but from the sound of it this isn’t going to be good. I admit some of my old frustration with this series has come back as once again the plot looks to be at a standstill. I am having fun, no doubt. But I notice that not much has actually been accomplished these past two episodes besides giving Amanda and Constanze some spotlight. The two certainly deserve their moment to shine however when I notice that this episode could essentially be removed from the series and nothing would be affected, I can’t help but feel a little miffed. Not to mention that it’s more than a little late to start developing these characters, not to mention pointless if they aren’t going to be more than background decoration. This has always been the aspect of saturday morning cartoons that I never quite liked. An adventure happens but the characters in question end up in the same place they were when the episode began, all experiences and lessons learnt sent to the void. Little Witch Academia isn’t quite guilty of that as I think from now one Constanze will be considerably warmer towards Akko though all things considered this is likely the most screentime she’s going to get. Perhaps that machine broom she built for Akko might come into play later though I still think the shooting star that’s soaring around the world is going to come back in some fashion. Likely during the finale.

A thought has occurred to me while watching this season. I originally thought that this will be the one and only season of Little Witch Academia. Triggers Original works after all aren’t known for leaving room for sequels. However Little Witch Academia was their first work and it is possible they may wish to make more than a single season for this series, though that is admittedly unlikely. The one thing about this is that I thought this series would end with a conclusive, decisive ending but if they do plan to continue Akko’s adventures that won’t be the case. Sure the trouble with Croix will be resolved but there may be quite a few loose ends left behind. The thought of this leaves me with mixed feelings as another season would certainly be welcome but I do also prefer a realised end over a “To be continued.” Next week looks to be a Diana episode so we will finally see just what that comment in the last episode was about. Considering that the latest word of Arturus has to do with tradition I think helping Diana will lead to unlocking the word.

Posted on 5 May 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Little Witch Academia

It took seventeen episodes but we are finally doing something with the enchanted parade crew. Plot-wise I don’t think we got anywhere seeing as there turned out to be no word in the academy and this seems more about Croix performing some kind of experiment. As to what she hoped to accomplish is anyone’s guess. Regardless it is nice to see Amanda get her own episode seeing as she hasn’t played an active part since the dragon episode. So Amanda and Akko infiltrate a boys school in order to find the holy grail and i have to admit to being a little disappointed that there was no Fate/Stay night reference. Well at least the episode title looks to be a reference to Monty Python so I will settle for that.

I do like that the villain of this particular story turned out to not be completely scum. I have often seen anime with antagonists like him who never show any sense of shame or regret. But after being saved by Amanda he owned up to the whole thing being his fault and I like that. Even the greatest pricks have some sense to know when they have taken things too far and rather than go the route of having him remain a complete one dimensional asshole, they actually gave him a little bit of redemption. However I do still think it doesn’t excuse his earlier acts as even if it was played up for laughs, he was trying to torture and kill Amanda beforehand.

Otherwise Trigger is really being standout with the fight animation so I thank the studio for what is likely sleepless nights of tiresome overwork. They still seem to be pushing a romantic angle between Akko and Andrew as they contrast her drive to go for her dreams over his resignation to taking the job his family is grooming him for. Ursula mentioned that the next word has to due with tradition and it was briefly mentioned that Diana’s family has run into some sort of trouble. I have a feeling that these two things are inadvertently linked. Though I think that won’t be getting screentime yet. Instead if my information is correct, another member of the enchanted parade group is getting her time to shine.

Posted on 26 April 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Little Witch Academia

One of the weaker episodes of the show but still enjoyable. This week sees us visiting Lottes parents and Akko unlocking another of the words of Arcturus after sloving a disease outbreak. Thus getting closer to the grand triskelion and now learned the meaning of pathence. Except she didn’t learn the meaning of pathence. This episode was strange in that it clearly was geared towards teaching Akko the meaning of pathence. Much of the episode showed off Akko’s lack of pathence causing trouble and I was waiting for the “Ah Ha!” moment of realisation where she would demonstrate her new understanding of the word. However that didn’t actually happen as when Akko had her “Ah Ha!” moment when stiring the potion and then proceeded to stir it slower till Shiny rod finished the job for her. It feels like Akko only learned the meaning of the word when the Shiny rod just said “Close enough” and gave her a freebie. Which makes me wonder if the activation of these words just means you have to guess the meaning of them and not nessarily grow or learn from them.

This makes me question Akko’s character growth thoughout the series as there have been times that it felt like she made massive leaps in her character arc only to regress back in the next episode. It’s hard to really cheer on a chearacter when they don’t learn from thier mistakes and Akko was certainly testing me this episode. The whole ordeal with the Yeti was humorous enough until you realise that Akko’s friends were quite literally dying the whole time she was critising the Yeti. Speaking of which, despite the stakes being high the atmosfere of the episode was really too light hearted to get accross the actual agency of the problem. The ridiclous conditions for the desease, the comedic gathering of ingredients and a general lack of concern from both Akko and Sucy made the entire situation just feel like another day at the office. I did like the moment with her begining to doubt herself when walking through the snow but it was a small moment that was quickly brushed aside.

As for Criox, who knows what she’s up to. She’s discovered that the emotion of anger can draw out the most energy from magic but to me that’s just asking for trouble. Much like in Doom 2016 they thought that the prefect solution to an energy crisis would be to draw energy from Hell. It’s just a matter of when everything goes to hell if the source of your power is based around dark matter. My big question is why is Ursula just letting Criox do as she pleases and not warned Akko about her? She clearly sees the threat she poses and yet isn’t really trying to do anything to get in her way. Theres also the matter of the governer who has yet to do anything despite foreshadowing shutting down the witch academy. Seems he was shoved off stage rather fast and the same can be said of Amanda and friends. Despite having a spot on the opening I am rather surpised how under utilised they are. I was under the impression that after the second OVA that the three would be a regular part of Akko’s entourage but that appears to not have happened. Shame as their presense could have really brightened up the interactions in this episode. Sucy and Lotte are good but both are too quiet to really bounce off Akko. Even having just Amanda there would have been good for drilling in the point that Akko needs patence as she could have been another example of lacking it. I have lots of complaints but that is out of a geniune love for this series and a wish for it to excel. I wonder if anyone on the trigger team happens to notice these kinds of complaints as the Yeti getting trolled online certainly seemed like a metaphore for just such a thing.

CHANGE USERNAME
silver
You did fine. It's a risk associated with reading post-viewing episodic discussions. Pretty much everyone knows that if you don't want to be spoiled don't even get online.
Lenlo
I tried to leave explicit spoilers about what happened outside the (more...) tag, but its a risk of readin a review I suppose.
silver
Hah, sorry about spoiling it. That's the problem with major shocks like that; they're most effective if you're not expecting them. Still, the show has deft execution of its executions, and that makes the experience worse than I could imagine.
Lenlo
Well im glad it convinced you. Tried something different with writing this week
KTravlos
man I should not had read the review. Now I will go and watch Inuyashiki. I had missed it.
silver
@Lenlo: It caught me off guard, too. Definitely working to earn that 'psychological' genre tag.
Lenlo
Well... Inuyashiki surprised me today. It went far darker than I was expecting. Thanks Gants author
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Such an odd art style, have you ever seen these? These are the film covers the Polish get:
Kaiser-Eoghan
*that was the most interesting character
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Z's ending was very very well played and it was Jean Tringnents was interesting, largely for that he was a right winger working with the left wingers.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And of course the British version of house of cards.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wonder if he's seen Yes Minister and The New Statesman, also political comedies and for those of us who lived in the 80s seeing Thatcherites getting slagged off was great.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I do think thick of it works better though as the humour serves a thirty minute episode more comfortably. Stalin's fairly short though so I don't think the joke will run out.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: the Death of stalin is the title I'm looking for as well. Will screen here in few weeks. I almost reccomend In the Loop and the Thick of It (haven't watched the latter though) for Travlos since they're a political satire, which I think he'll enjoy
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Hope you already booked that heavens feel screening, cause its sold out.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've heard that the anime's character development in Juuni taisen expands on the books, which only give them short lines for their backgrounds.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah, so perhaps in Juuni taisen they'll spin that so the Rat guy uses the ox guy to his advantage in some different way.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: There is a special atmosphere watching anime on a big screen.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I might be seeing death of Stalin tomorrow or Saturday. The thick of it was hilarious and this has the same director as that.
SuperMario
Both Z and All the President's Men are coassic movie. Hold my attention from start to finish. Z, in particular, wowed me that I literally had my mouth wide open
SuperMario
Off tangent, watching Fireworks in the cinema the other day made me realize how I miss watching movies on the big screen. I might try to go to the cinema once a week again. Been missed out all the good movies lately.
SuperMario
In the Great Race story, Rat used a very underhanded tactic to win the race (it jumps into the Ox to pass the great river and then jump off to the finish line. This Rat guy's speciality is Killing All so there is a high chance that he survives till the end
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I have no doubt that we will have more amazing character arcs for Juuni Taisen.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But that could prove to be too predictable.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wonder if the Rat guy is going to be the wild card in all this, after all in the old story, wasn't it the Rat who won that zodiac race thing?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Juuni Taisen is killing off its most interesting characters.... =< I wanted the bird girl to stay around a bit longer.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd love to see more Lem or Stugastky style/brand of scifi, I need to rewatch stalker again.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Going back to the cyberpunk thing, I don't want just any ol' thing getting made, I want to see something scifi related thats ACTUALLY clever and has long and DIFFICULT dialogue .
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: While not a political series Chaos;head is a good example of being annoyed at the conspiracy thing, what drives me up the wall about that show and its sequel is how every every time I think about going back to it I realize that its only interesting on a surface level and is utter hokkum.
KTravlos
@Kaiser. Yup, perhaps because I work in political science, they tend to anger me. So I avoid them. Borgen is a good political series.

In general. It still startles how much of a better character anime Tsutomu was comapred to manga Tsutomu in Bridy the Mighty. But I forgive the manga as I get more Gomez!
AidanAK47
@Amagi/Kaiser, thought as much. Strike it off the list then. And God Tsubasa was a cluster fuck by the end.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Eh simul-dub of Juuni taisen is out, I might aswell keep up with that instead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I had this weird relationship with dragonball in general. When I was younger I never actively seeked out the show, but on a rare occasion I would watch random episodes whenever I was channel hopping and nothing else was on.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Clamp shared universe was a mistake.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I really really wish that that tone breaking style of comedy stops being a thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It doesn't happen often, but there ARE shows we all have that snap trigger us when they get mentioned.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel my disdain of re:zero is because I hate Akame ga kill and Higurashi so much and it prevents me because of bias from enjoying it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: In addition to what i posted about Pandora, you will hate the comedy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I will rewatch it, the first one is one of those things that improved on repeat viewings.
@Travlos: Conspiracy theories are one of those things I find myself taking interest in, then almost immediately consider immensely stupid and a waste of time.
Amagi
Aidan: If you didn't like the first parts of Pandora you won't like the rest either. Most people that loved it did this because of the characters and setting, the story isn't really getting better and I kinda disliked what they did near the end. It was overcomplicated and everyone had like three different personalities, plot twists and so on. Not nearly as bad as Tsubasa Chronicle though
AidanAK47
@Bokusenou, believe me when I say you are not few. There are plenty who Dislike Re:Zero. I can understand it and I sort of get where your coming from regarding the characters. (Though Saber sucks) There is just something about the series that I just adore.
KTravlos
@Kaiser. I have not watched most of them. But I have watched Z and All the President's Men. Both are great films. The issue with me is that while I like political thrillers I despite conspiracy theories. Far too many pol. thrillers dive into con.theory stuff. So I must be discriminating.
SuperMario
Okay, I'm off to watch Blade Runner 2049 now. Hopefully it can be as good as the original
Vonter
In contrast World's End Harem, surprisingly looks to be trying. It has one story trying to play straight, the scenario of being the last man in a world mainly habited by woman. And has had this framing of self worth, temptation and doubt I like. No work of art, but surprising for this type of manga.
Vonter
In regards to manga, I'll need to look for something good, being losing time with ecchi stuff. Which I can tell Okamoto should just make hentai, seeing as his latest work, doesn't even try to be anymore than pandering trash (at least older work, had a notion of a story).
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: Did all the presidents men and Parallax view by Pakula appeal to you?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: Actually as your are a Greek....have you watched Z, missing, State of siege or the confession? None of them are actually in Greek but they were political thrillers directed by Costa Gravas.
Anonymous1490677
KT here: Well I am a sucker for political thrillers and "grand" politics, so the direction it took is quite fun for me. Even if it does indicate a Tomino ending.
Kaiser-Eoghan
For me Titan peaked at volume 8 and I never bothered continuing on much further.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: I remember a commenters on here a good while ago that mentioned the ending didn't satisfy or come together well and made the investment not worth it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Honestly it was only near the halfway point I vested any interest in pandora hearts, the first 4 volumes left me wondering if I'd drop it, then near the last few volumes I simply fell out of reading it.
Bokusenou
I feel like I'm one of the few people who don't understand why Re: Zero is so popular...the only characters I half liked were Puck & Crusch (the latter because she reminded me of Saber from the Fate series, minus the unnecessary perma-blush marks) My anime club screened the series and I really should have skipped those meetings...
Lenlo
Mmm Inuyashiki episode 2 tomorrow. Time to see where it goes
AidanAK47
@Anon, That reminds me. Anime limited better announce the date of the Re:Zero Blu-ray release at that panel of theirs at MCM London Comic Con. They are the only ones known to have licensed it and they have a partnership with Funimation. Even if we don't get a second season I have to get the first on Blu-ray.
Anonymous1490189
Emilia re:zero
AidanAK47
Finally Got that review up. Been sitting in my to do list for a while.
SuperMario
I remeber in Dragon ball, they state that Son Goku takes 6 years of training to become a Super Saiyan. His oldest son takes 3 years and then the youngest one... only takes 3 months of training with his mother. So yeah...
AidanAK47
While we are talking about manga, I was looking into getting some manga boxsets and I saw one for pandora hearts. However I started reading it and 15 chapters in I just can't get into it. I hear a lot of praise for it but is it really worth continuing?
AidanAK47
@Amagi, yep. Like Naruto with the nine tailed beasts and Sharingan. At first they were cool and then everyone and their mother had Sharingan or a tailed Beast.
Though If I had a problem with SNK its that I just find the thing to be poorly written overall. It has creative idea's, but the characters and dialogue is really weak in my eyes.
Amagi
You know that SuperSaiyan syndrome. At first it was special and mysterious, but once the second one gets to have the power they tend to pop up everywhere. Same with Claymore and basically almost every shounen ever.
Amagi
I overall like the SNK manga but I have to agree I really have a problem with this shounen trope of some speciality one character has that suddently turn out to be the speciality of many.
Lenlo
It turned from a horror/thriller to a sort of... shounen mystery thing for me. I wasnt a fan once EVERYONE became titans.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, I dropped off at that point, picked it up again and read it up to date. Now I am falling out again. True be told I haven't really got into it since the beginning chapters and I am not a fan of the direction it took. If you don't like it now I say future chapters won't really change your mind.
Lenlo
Does Attack on Titan get better? I was reading it up until Season 2 came out and then just fell off the wagon.
KTravlos
oh what a cliffhanger in the Shingeki no Koyjin manga! I am happy where this is going!
Kaiser-Eoghan
I agree that the way the series addresses emotion has some interest to it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The later chapters I read had some action in them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Had a read of the children of the wales manga, I am glad to see a shoujo that isn't based on an otome or school life series , additionally I like it on an aesthetic level, I can see it going somewhere but the fast-forward pace makes it hakes it harder to connect with.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Blame! was recently adapted and thats cyberpunk, even if it didn't follow the manga.
Amagi
@Kaiser: Agree. Cyber- and steampunk are two of the few settings I really dig. Especially because I think that there are a lot of potential plots and twists for cyberpunk/VR settings anime haven't used yet. AR is great too, the only series about that is Dennou Coil and it was made ~10 years ago. Maybe the SAO movie but it was just a movie.
Amagi
@Aidan: Same here lol. I remember the toilet thingy but not the woman's backstory. That being said, I enjoyed the series as whole, though some parts were too K-ONish for my taste.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The idea of would agorophobia maintain itself and they'd stay inside or would the fear of being raped/tortured/killed and bypass the agorophobia ?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Random tangent, but I would find it fascinating to see a hikkikomori subject to a home invasion.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Although honestly, I would prefer a cyberpunk wave of anime series to get popular again.
silver
I too am starting to really enjoy the 'adventure anime' genre. The medium of animation is uniquely suited to fantastical worldbuilding.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Was that the one where the girl is desperately trying not to piss herself? Also why can I remember that and not this blonde woman's backstory?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: yep, agreed. It's at its best when it can use the settings to flesh out the characters. The episode after that one, one the other hand, was Sora no woto's dullest episode - where the main girl spends the whole episode waiting for a freaking phone call.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: The Blonde woman's backstory in the middle of sora no oto, that was the best episode of it.
SuperMario
@Amagi: for reccomendation, if you don't mind another cute girls in a post-apocalyptic world show, you can try Sora no Woto (Sound of the sky). I love that show to bits
SuperMario
But I'm not entirely sold on the show yet. I feel the relationships are a tad too heavy-handed. The light hearted tones don't work well for me but I really feel a From the New world's vibe from the show
SuperMario
@Amagi: I will talk about Children of the Whales here in the chatbox since we don't cover it. Damnit the cliffhanger. That series really focuses on the theme of repress their own feelings. From the children in the Mud Whales with their custom of not to cry in the funeral or their lacing their hands to express their gratitude. Episode 2 has that monster who basically eats others emotions
Kaiser-Eoghan
And by extension, I would hope that it would encourage adaptations of older fantasy manga aswell.
Amagi
I really hope this type of fantasy will become a new trend instead of the classical world of warcraft type of isekai
Amagi
There is just something really atmospherical about a few characters exploring an unknown world alone that is either almost or entirely devoid of humans or just weird like in Kino's Journey.
Amagi
Shuumatsu Shoujou, Houseki, Kino 2017 and Children of the Whales are shaping up to become my favorites this season. It's funny that they have so much in common, same with Made in Abyss, which also was my favorite of the last season.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, well there were fellows down in cork that decided to go Kite Surfing. They had to send out a boat to rescue the dumb bastards.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: I saw that there were some profoundly stupid people ignoring the warnings, some guy even decided to go out swimming despite it.
AidanAK47
I am in some ways both relieved and disappointed.
AidanAK47
Well I got the day off work and the only thing that happened was that it was a bit windy. Wasn't really a big deal to be honest.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Whats the word on your end Aidan with regards to the Hurricane?
Kaiser-Eoghan
And of course raging bull, a rare case where I watched a film twice.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I've always, apart from Creed, ignored the Rocky sequels despite enjoying the first one, not really into watching a billion followups to a film. Films about fighters seem to connect with me, I got alot out of warrior, southpaw and Rocky.
KTravlos
I was surprised by how well Ancient Magus Bride was able to sell to me the naturalness of Elia's skull head, and the falseness of his conjured human head. Well done.
Lenlo
I do love a good boxing anime. Both Ashita no Joe and Hajime no Ippo are great, though for different reasons.
Vonter
Simply put, unlike Hajime no Ippo. Ashita no Joe, also was mainly about Joe, living in a poor rural town, struggling to make a living, and boxing came out as something that gave him meaning. Instead of the typical shounen of "becoming the best".
Vonter
I think it's bold when someone announced they want to make something like "the next Rocky". Since that's apparently what I get from this announcement. https://manga.tokyo/news/original-anime-megalo-box-inspired-by-ashita-no-joe-announced-for-spring-2018/
CJayTiii
Just watched Heaven's Feel Part 1 at the movie theater last night. DEAR LORD the animation was flawless. I honestly thought they nailed the calmer scenes a lot better than UBW as well. The wait for part 2 is gonna be brutal...
Amagi
Isekai isn't even bad, it's just that it became the worst case of formularic wish fulfillment masturbation nowadays. I actually wish we would get more proper isekai anime again, especially if it's some scifi or time travel stuff for once
AidanAK47
You know thinking about it, Muv Luv Alternative could be considered a deconstruction of Isekai before Isekai was even a thing. After all it actually has the elements of of Isekai.
AidanAK47
Gonna do up a review of the trilogy. Though first I need to post that Subahibi review I have had sitting in my Google docs. Twas waiting till we got the impressions done with.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, I remember checking out Muv Luv and not being too impressed about it. When i cheeked out Alternative years ago I was blown away by how good it was. Usually VNs have moments of downtime where it can get boring no matter how good they are. But Alternative just had you from start to finish.
Amagi
@Aidan: Muv Luv Alt is one of the best VNs I've read. I am happy I always avoided spoilers before. The only thing I knew was that it gets heavy around chapter 6 or 7.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Thanks for letting me know before I bothered booking for it.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: the plot doesn't make sense. As the story progresses, it gets weirder, the visual goes wilder and the ending doesn't wrap up much. I might need to watch the live-action version
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: See you rated fireworks 3 1/2, what did you think of it?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: I suppose, same to you, hopefully you'll be alright.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: It was designed by Marta Akermann : https://friendist.deviantart.com/
Anonymous1482176
Can I get where the banner is from?
Kaiser-Eoghan
I know there were 18 deaths back in the mid eighties when a storm struck here back then.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Seems that it will be at its worst in the west, that said I'm living in Dublin in the east so I'll probably get away with a power cut for a while. Thankfully I'm not back in work until Thursday and I won't be going anywhere tomorrow.
AidanAK47
Also Careful Kaiser, I hear we got a hurricane heading our way tomorrow.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, Can't say I do. I got into anime around the time it was getting put on the internet. And I only started buying anime when I got a job. Now I got a whole bookcase of Blu-rays.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Remember back in the 90s when we didn't have all region dvd players and everything got released on region 1?
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, I checked though. Seems the screenings are strictly US for Heavens Feel. Sort of like how Grand Order isn't released for Europe either. Also took goddamn ages to get the Blu-Rays of UBW too. Aniplex just seems to hate us for some reason.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Dublin city university has/had an anime club.
Kaiser-Eoghan
These are all one time only things though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Eh....on rare occasions the Eye cinema in Galway and the Lighthouse in Dublin do screenings . Eiretakon has re-formed as J-con in Dublin and they do screenings.
AidanAK47
Playing Muv Luv Alternative and I just made it pass a certain infamous scene. Honestly...I thought seeing as I knew it was coming that it wouldn't hit that hard. But even after all these years...it still gives me chills.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, Could be worse. There are no screenings in Ireland so the wait is a hell of a lot longer for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'll likely be checking out Lu over the wall in early December.
Amagi
I am really looking forward to that new movie from the Tekkonkinkreet guy and Heaven's Feel but both screenings only happen in February so this will sadly still take a while.
SuperMario
Aah, I just missed the only screening of In the Corner of the World at my local cinema (it comes as part of a film festival, guess I will watch the pirated version then). Thankfully they screened Firework anime so I'm going to watch it. Now
SuperMario
I intend to still give Dies Irea another chance. don't know if it's worth it thou
SuperMario
Maybe those kidscheated half of the way because no one can WALK faster than me :)
Kaiser-Eoghan
The animation continues to be quite poor and its only getting 15 episodes.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Though I could definitely have seen my German Ex offended by it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I never even cared enough to think that people would be this offended by Dies Irae, it would be like being offended by the Naziploitation elements in hellsing . I find both far too silly to be in anyway offensive.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But in all seriousness, good that you keep up the exercise. I walk pretty much everywhere.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Little fiends likely taking performance enhancing drugs, know to poison them next beforehand =P
SuperMario
Still finished in a first half but 35 minutes for 5km is something I wasn't to proud of. Damnit.
SuperMario
Well, just finished a running event. The race was just 5 kilometer so I was aiming to run all the way. Ended up walking 1/3 of the way and lose to some 12 year old kids... I'm getting old, really!
AidanAK47
@Anon, That was a stupid move on their part. Still I prefer to judge a game based on the quality of the product and not outside circumstances.
Anonymous1479322
yooka laylee is okay but i hate it because they removed jontrons voice
KTravlos
new Altair OP is better than old Altair OP. But old ED is better than new. Man I really am sad Altair cannot have the 100_ episodes of LOGH. Because of that they really have to rush the story to make the politics work, but at same time rushing it undermines the story integrity. Which is a pity. I really think if Altair had the LOGH treatment, it would be a stupendous tale of politics.
AidanAK47
I got that with Yooka Laylee which I thought was a decent fun game. However the internet has determined it to be a flaming trash pile of a game. I even have a friend who never played the game but bashes it purely because it's so hated.
KTravlos
While I understand the point, and have indeed watched stuff both psgel and the current writers have not given a high score too, generally speaking our tastes are complimentary. In a world of scarce time and quite a lot of stress over things like work or relationships, I will take the cognitive short-cuts I can for my hobbies, and FOMO be damned! :)
AidanAK47
That may actually be quite the common occurrence as internet opinion tends to veer to extremely positive or extremely negative. Something can't simply be good, it most be amazing. Somehting can't be passable either, it has to be garbage.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I agree with that. In truth you can only really judge something when you have seen it yourself. I will even admit that mine and likely the others reviews of Imouto are a bit of Hyperbole. It's really not the most terrible thing I have ever seen. Actually I would say Dynamic cord was worse.
Anonymous1478520
(i already found some nice things i would have neglected otherwise or deemed worthless based on reviews/seasonal previews etc)
Anonymous1478520
So i concluded that even if those people were writing good reviews and had somewhat compatible tastes with me, were nice and intelligent people overall in the end it did not mattered that much. while others' opinions are helpful, my own taste is the only thing i can really trust. so watching everything it is
Anonymous1478520
I used to chose my shows based on reviews from people i trust, this site included, but then i just started trying out everything and - shocking, i know - suddenly i liked things others did not. or vice versa, which were a possibility even before.
Lenlo
Thats why I only really watch/checked out things that piqued my interest. Was gonna do it anyways, so why not write about i
SuperWooper
Comprehensive sampling does have its benefits, though. Animegataris is a show I wouldn't have touched on my own, but it was quite watchable.
SuperWooper
@Kaiser, I agree that only the better-looking shows need to be previewed, but being a new recruit, I can't exactly influence the long-standing Star Crossed policy of giving everything a shot.
SuperMario
@anon1477190: that moment you mentioned about Kino losing her cool was good, but then they followed up on the obvious exposition about the couple which I felt was heavy-handed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I bring that up mainly because I don't want to see any of the writers getting burned out/demotivated/having their time wasted.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Guys it must be incredibly time consuming to watch some of these obviously from the outset bottom of the barrel shows you know will be awful and you'll never cover, I doubt anyone would have complained if you didn't mention Imouto Ireba.
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