Posted on 4 April 2017 with categories: Anime Reviews, Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

Isekai stories have become somewhat of a tiresome genre as of late. There have been many stories of people being transported/reincarnated into other worlds where they shed their once pitiful exterior and become some legendary figure in another world. In most cases it’s trit, balant childish wish fulfilment and the stories often become tiresome when the protagonist gains a level of power that could never be challenged. Enter Youji Senki(Saya of Tanya the evil) where in a HR manager from Japan is tossed into a alternative world WWI by god in an effort to teach him piety. Tanya’s first episode may not win over many but if you check out the second episode you will be taken for quite a ride. This series is the first work by Studio Nut and while it pushed them to their limits it remains a impressive piece of work. Animation and art could be shaky and character designs took a hit for what looks to be for making animation easier. Tanya has some truly impressive set pieces and boasts the largest number of war scenes I have seen in a single anime.

There are shows which advertise themselves as action packed but are anything but, however Tanya is not one of these shows. Though when Tanya takes it slow that can be some of the more interesting parts of the series. Tanya and God’s interactions make for some of the best parts of the show and show a underline of Theism vs Atheism symbolism. The show doesn’t pick a side and admittedly any meaning gathered from this would be shallow level speculation at best. This aspect also becomes less prevalent in the second half of the show as God stands aside in favor of a more human antagonist. It didn’t delve into the concept as much as it could have but it nonetheless makes for a great hook to keep the viewer interested.

In regards to this series flaws the big thing is that it is Tanya’s show through and through. What means is that Tanya gets the bulk of the development, Tanya gets the glory and she gets every moment of badassery. This leaves a large majority of the supporting cast rather underdeveloped and I am certain you won’t remember most of their names by show’s end. In the same way Tanya is to a degree rediculously overpowered and a good amount of the shows second half is dedicated to her steamrolling her opponents. If you don’t find Tanya’s character compelling or interesting, I doubt there will be much here for you besides an alternate take on World War I. Still it’s hard not to like Tanya when she is a beautifully made anti-hero whose motivations are understandable but exceedly malicious. The series can be humorous at times with the after credits sequences taking on a more joking tone than the series normally goes for. The way in how Tanya’s actions and intentions are misinterpreted make for some really humorous scenarios.

For history buff this series provides some meat as well in how the war proceeds in the anime mirrors that of real history and while magical aspects are present, a lot of the equipment used is true to the time. Music is decent with the main theme having enough to get you pumped during an action scene. The opening is different and might not be to everyone’s tastes but the ending is great and closes out each episode perfectly. I applaud Tanya for being one of the few anime to not make use of fanservice as Tanya is in no way fetished at any point within the show. Considering that she is a lolita you would think that’s a given but believe me in that hasn’t stopped many shows before. This show remains a remarkably fun watch throughout, though it loses some steam in its second half but makes a comeback with it’s final two episodes. I say this is well worth any anime fans time and certainly deserving of a second season if being X is merciful.

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

This is certainly a fitting finale in many ways. While the ending is a massive sequel hook, at least satisfying enough to witness the end of this reality’s World War One and have it launch into World War Two territory. Honestly, I think this anime would make for one hell of an advertisement for the light novels and after seeing what the future has in store, I would definitely buy them if they were in English. It gives me hope that this series will see a second season as even though it has it’s flaws, it was still barrels of fun.

Tanya’s ending speech of the episode was a great one by taunting the viewer into maybe thinking that she had finally given up and accepted Being X, only for her to proclaim God to be shit and that she would kill him and take his place. In a way, I think Tanya has accepted Being X as being genuinely God but instead of giving in, her vendetta has increased twofold. Still, as great as that final speech was, I think her one earlier in the episode trumped it. When I heard Tanya talk to Rerugen, I thought for a moment that she was going to reveal her past to him. Instead, Tanya explains that humans are not beings who run on logic but succumb to their emotions and that the war will continue. Her words are prophetic to Rerugen but what makes it all the more beautifully haunting is that Tanya is speaking from her experiences in war as well as her previous life’s death. The way this talk was framed from the voice actors performance was just excellent. The minute she finished speaking, her words come true as a messenger arrives with words that the Republic will continue to fight against the Empire, even from another country. The Armistice is in shambles and now the Empire needs to deploy overseas to wipe out the remnants of the Republican forces.

Tanya laments that the Empire’s actions only spur more war, as crossing into another country causes the powers to be to no longer stand idly by. The Empire has become too much of a threat and now they stand with enemies on all sides. Perhaps, Tanya shouldn’t be so hard on them as the consequences of her actions is coming right back to bite her on the ass. With the death of her father, Mary Sue has decided to join the war. Coming packed with extra God power and while she doesn’t know about the killer of her father, Tanya carries a clear identifier in the engraved submachine. God, I would love to see these two duke it out. If this is the true end of Youjo Senki, Saga of Tanya the evil with no sequel being ever announced, then it’s not a bad way to cap off the series. For Studio Nut’s first work this was certainly a impressive offering and I will be looking forward to see just what they have in store next. If that happens to be more Tanya, then I certainly am on board.

 

Posted on 29 March 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

Studio Nut really must be hurting as this week starts off with a two minute recap of the last episode but what made this episode special is that for the first time, Tanya lost. The start of this episode at least had Ansen pay that check of giving Tanya a hard time. In particular I loved the irony that he tried to take her out with a suicide bombing much like Tanya did on their first encounter. There was also that moment where in Tanya was fought in close quarters and full herself getting manhandled. It’s sometimes easy to forget be she is still a little girl of twelve years of age. When in hand to hand combat she is at a serious disadvantage due to her under developed body. I spotted moments of janky artwork and cgi animation in the fight scene but otherwise it was a fairly accelerating affair. I am once again annoyed that Tanya shook off injuries and looked fine within the next scene.

They really need to clarify just how medicine works in this universe as this is the second time she’s gotten injured only to have it magically disappear by the next scene. It definitely gives a layer of invincibility to Tanya when she’s survived many explosions with only a bit of dirt on her despite being in the center of the blast radius. One really great detail of the fight scene was the Ansen was using a military shotgun which Tanya proclaimed violated wartime treaty. See in real history the German protested the use of shotguns in world war I. They stated the reason being that shotguns were inhumane and caused excess suffering to the victim. Though the real reason is that Germany didn’t have shotguns so they wanted to prevent the enemy from using them. What makes this particularly novel is that claiming that Shotguns were inhumane is rather hypocritical because Germany invented flamethrowers.

There may be those confused at what exactly happened in the second half of this episode.  For that you may need to know so history on the World Wars. The first is the matter that command signed a Armistice, not a surrender. An armistice is only a formal agreement to stop fighting and one of the things that lead to the start of World War II. Another event to know would be the battle of Dunkirk which has been site of one of the points that Germany could have won WWII. It was a mass evacuation of 338,226 soldiers. If the soldiers had been killed then this could have meant that Germany could have taken England and thus deterred America from entering the war. Here we see a combination of the two events as the armistice was used as a massive distraction to ensue the Emipire doesn’t notice the mass evacuation. The goal in this war was to have a severe loss of life to ensue the enemy was incapable of fighting.

Now that the enemy has fled the mainland it opens up the war for new people to enter the field. Tanya knows her history and  she knows that the empire will be in a very bad position if that happens. Here is the beauty of what happens next. Tanya only knows what she knows due to alternative history. Anyone high enough in command who would listen to her is dealing with negotiating the terms of the armistice. To anyone else she just sounds like a war crazed soldier who can’t leave the battlefield. But she know that this is her one chance for a peaceful life in this world. Yet command chains her for she just looks like a psychopath trying to start another war. This is beautiful. Tanya know’s exactly what is happening but is utterly powerless to do anything about it. All of her victories so far in the series have amounted to nothing as she will once again be forced into the fires of battle in the future.

Posted on 23 March 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

What am I to say when the majority of the episode is detailing a military operation? I admit that content has become spare in this series as of late and the Tanya vs God battle has more or less been pushed to the sideline. Tanya had one moment here where it looked like her mission could be a bust but thankfully, her subordinates hits gold. There is a certain joy in seeing a plan come together and this plan had echoes of Hannibal’s tactics during the famous battle of Cannae where he managed to surround a far larger army on all sides and rendered their numbers meaningless. We get a small glimpse of the politics of the empire and it’s clear that the army holds significant sway in decisions. They tried to use the retreat as a means of criticising the army’s leadership, only to have the military succeed and render them all silenced. In a way, Zetter’s genius is scary as the man not only won a war but used that victory as a means of retaining political dominance and shut down criticism of the military. As it is now, I would say that the Empire is only a mere facade of democracy and has become a full blown dictatorship.

Anson returns with a bang as he shoots down Grandz. I have my doubts that he’s actually dead as I didn’t see any blood but this does confirm that Anson is the endboss of this series and I more than welcome someone who could make Tanya try for once. The end credits scene shows why Grandz looked rather awkward when Tanya commented if anyone did anything to Viktoriya. If you wanted to look deeper into it you could theorise a level of indoctrination with Tanya’s men as Viktoriya follows her orders to kill even within her dreams. There are rumors that this show will actually be two cours which I find dubious considering that this episode was delayed as well as the clear production troubles the studio has been having. I would most certainly welcome two cours but if it was going to be the case, I would prefer it to be a split cour so the studio can lick it’s wounds. Former madhouse staff or not, this is still their first production as Studio Nut and the last thing we need is them burning themselves out.

Posted on 16 March 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

A calm before the storm episode as the war with the Republic draws close to its climax. It’s nice to see the episode start off with Tanya trying to rationalize her actions in the previous episode. What may not be apparent from the anime is that Viktoriya has a tendency of coming up with reasons that make Tanya’s actions seem like tough love as opposed to being efficient and ruthless. In that regard, I recommend watching the Youjo Senki shorts as they do a better job fleshing out the cast overall. Here, we have Viktoriya rationalizing to Grantz that Tanya was the one taking all responsibility for the mission while in actuality, Tanya made her subordinates do the dirty work to ensure her hands were as clean as possible but even she seems in doubt. It does remind me of the question asked during war college on who the responsibility lies in regards to war crimes. Based on that the responsibility would rest with the one who gave the order, she shifts the blame onto her superiors despite drafting up the very same policy that would justify killing noncombatants in a occupied urban environment.

I found it rather macabre for Wickya and Grantz to share in a laugh when a soldier was in agonizing pain only a few feet away but after-credits scene comes along and reveals that soldier was suffering from food poisoning by eating a rotten potato. It a bit of dark humour as food supplies were often low and potatoes can be dangerously poisonous as they belong to the same family of plants as the deadly Nightshade. Basically, when a potato starts sprouting it will have elevated levels of Solanine and this stuff can destroy you even with small amounts. Symptoms include nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach cramps, burning of the throat, cardiac dysrhythmia, nightmares, headache and dizziness. It goes without saying that someone ingest enough of this poison, they are going to have a bad time and die. The recent Youjo Senki short even goes into detail with this very same matter. Honestly it’s rather shocking to know that a foodstuff I have been eating my whole life could potentially kill me in the wrong circumstances.

It is rather nice to see Tanya having trouble for once. Members of her battalion are dying, the return of the mad scientist has her being blasted into the enemy headquarters and the defeat of the republic can likely only mean the world war escalating into a greater conflict. There was one moment this episode which had me rather confused. During a war scene it showed a cut to black when Tanya was hit with artillery. This suggested that the ever so invincible Tanya was finally injured on the front lines. However when Tanya is shown later she doesn’t have a single scratch on her and thing continue as usual. I would have liked to see her a little worse for wear as she’s nearing overpowered status. Otherwise the final parts of the episode suitably make the launch of the V1 rockets epic as Tanya once again curses X for throwing her into this situation. Considering how this battle is being built up, I think we will be seeing the return of Anson Sue and possibly the first person to give Tanya a real hard time.

Posted on 7 March 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

Like I have said before in previous posts on this series, I’m growing rather tired of Tanya’s lack of real opposition and non-stop victories. Given the events of this episode, I should be annoyed as this episode was yet another victory for Tanya and her battalion but a little change of perspective can make all the difference as she essentially commits a war crime. Let me tangent for a moment and talk about World War 1. You see it’s not often you hear about WWI in comparison to how often WWII comes up. It’s no surprise as WWII was the more appealing one with the Nazi’s acting as the perfect supervillains for the world to fight off. World War 2 was about triumphing over adversity, odds and great injustice. World War one of the other hand was about something else entirely. You see before WW1 there was still belief in the glory of war, in distinguishing yourself in battle. War is where heroes are born and boys are made men. At least that was the sentiment. but WWI changed that. There was no glory in WWI, only people dying pointlessly in trenches, misery, disease, chemical warfare and in the end nothing was truly accomplished other than a severe loss of life. It taught the world a simple truth, that war is hell. Now in Tanya’s world these people are learning that lesson for this is their first World War.

What I find most amusing is that this is very much the same situation as the attack on the Dakia Capital. The tactic is essentially the same, announce an evacuation and use that as grounds to justify attack. Seeing as this plan was conceived from a report that Tanya drew up I wouldn’t be surprised it the Dakia attack served as inspiration for it. In purely practical terms the plan makes sense as with the empire fighting a war on two fronts, they cannot spare the resources to quell internal conflict. Rather than spend weeks negotiating and fighting off republic mages, just shelling the town with artillery is a faster solution. This is likely the logic Tanya is using to justify this attack and I appreciate that she doesn’t quite take joy in the act itself. She did seem gleeful on the plans introduction to her but I take that as her being satisfied that command tooking her report into heart. In purely logical terms this plan makes sense, but morally it’s absolutely monstrous. Tanya may be able to rationalise it but members of her battalion are showing hesitation. Weiss followed orders but he was so distracted that he didn’t notice that he got shot. But the one to take it the hardest was a solider by the name of Grantz who really didn’t take kindly to firing on civilians. But as Tanya so aptly put it, a soldier does what they are ordered and today’s survivor is tomorrow’s enemy. I half expected Grantz to fire on Tanya but perhaps he is so terrified of her that opposition isn’t even an option. Tanya’s Battlian has been shown so far to be an invincible force so it’s nice to see so cracks forming in their ranks. I wouldn’t be surprised if a few suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder now.

The after credits scene shows something I didn’t quite expect. The return of Anson Sue. I find the reveal to be rather cheap and from what I hear this isn’t what happens in the light novels. Apparently Anson’s death went like the previous episode in that Tanya just killed him offhand and that was that. So it seems that he’s being brought back to give the series an antagonist for Tanya to face in the season finale. While I have misgiving about this I do see it as a good choice. Anson is the closest thing this series has to a human antagonist and with some god power he could prove to make the finale more exciting. However I am worried the series may attempt to make an anime original ending which in my experience rarely turn out well. I still believe that Mary Sue is coming into this story and I would like to see a second season where that could happen. So far all anime original aspects that Studio Nut have added have worked out great for the series. in particular the portrayal of God is leagues better than the source material. So in that regard I hope they manage to pull off Anson as a good antagonist, or perhaps as this episode has shown, maybe he’s the protagonist?

Posted on 28 February 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

After a recap episode last week, we are back to Tanya and her efforts in the war but I must admit that while still enjoyable, this was a weaker episode of the show. I am reminded of the first episode of the series which, while visually interesting, lacked a real hook to get the audience invested. The characterisation and interaction between Tanya and her subordinates has been lacking and I noticed that the past two episode had little of Tanya’s own inner monologue. One of the most entertaining aspects of this series is the contrast between how Tanya thinks and the views of others of her, but ever since establishing the battalion, there hasn’t been many times where we hear her thoughts. The five minute shorts do show more of how Tanya interacts with her subordinates but in the main series itself very little is shown besides her few interactions with Viktoriya and even those are strictly business.

Have you ever seen a simple action movie, where the protagonist’s family member is killed by the villain and then they grow up to take revenge in the films climax? Well, I feel like that is what is happening here but instead, the protagonist is the one doing the killing. It took me a while to remember that Anson was one of the officers who first fought Tanya on her first mission and it is  rather odd that he got so much focus this episode. Anson Sue (Crunchyroll has translated this as Sioux but it’s up for debate if that is an accurate translation), sends his family away from the war and loses his life in a desperate gamble to take down Tanya. Tanya, with complete disinterest kills him and steals his gun which happened to be a Christmas present from his daughter, engraved with his initials. I doubt Anson will be making a second appearance as that fall looked fatal and any attempt to bring him back would be cheap or ludicrous.

As a result, Tanya is now lugging around a gun that signifies her as the killer and I think someone’s daughter is going to be out for sweet revenge once the war reaches American shores. It certainly seems like the workings of Being X, to give someone a personal reason to start gunning for Tanya’s life and give another a beatable antagonist for Tanya to face. It is rather hypocritical if this is the case as he choose to support a non-believer over a devout soldier which does call into question why he is deserving of such praise when he tosses aside one of his followers in order to spite a non believer? What I find especially delicious about this development is that Ansons daughter is named Mary. So Tanya would be, quite literally, fighting a Mary Sue. The biggest problem about this is that if Mary Sue is going to get involved in this war, it certainly won’t be in this season. Most likely, it will be later down the line in the novels which we may never see animated.

Other than that, this was another easy win for Tanya and with the Entente Alliance on it’s last legs, this could signal the intervention of other countries. Daika has already made a move, unwise as it was, but I will say that other countries are getting the same idea. The Empire has grown to an alarming degree and as predicted, will soon be fighting a war on all fronts. Tanya’s reputation is growing greater as she guesses the plans of the top brass and can even challenge her superiors with her opinions but I find this rather hard to be invested in. Why? Because it is set up for a war that we will not likely see play out in its entirety. As far as I know, this series is a single cour which would be enough to cover maybe two or three light novel volumes of content. There are seven novels so far and could end up following the likes of many anime series that are only designed to drum up sales for their source material.  It could be possible that a second season is planned though considering the recap episode last episode, it’s possible that Studio Nut is already working to the bone to give one cour. My biggest worry would be that the rest of this season would be spent building up to a second season and have no real satisfying conclusion. It’s a sad fact as an anime fan, we do not see a proper ending to a majority of the series we watch. It would certainly be nice to have such a thing although greedy and unrealistic at the same time.

Posted on 14 February 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

This week’s episode is more focused on action so I have less to talk about. In terms of plot, we get the main gist that World War One is revving into gear. Dakia looks to be knocked out of the war, thanks to Tanya’s efforts and as predicted, her success has caused the top brass to use her battalion as their ace in the hole. Oddly enough, Tanya doesn’t seem all that concerned about it. Despite the fact that she is ordered into brutally killing people, Tanya seems to be enjoying herself. A lot of this episode was Tanya showing that she’s a badass who can chuck grenades into bomber planes and blow up observation stations attempting to gather data on her. In truth, while watching this episode I was starting to become concerned that we could have the same issue that Drifters had that nothing was really going to pose a tangible threat to Tanya. I have said it before, a one sided battle is boring to watch and makes it feel like the protagonist is never in a position of danger. If the remainder of the series is going to have episodes like this, then the enemy needs to get Tanya to work for her victory instead of getting curbstomped just to show off just how amazing Tanya is.

Thankfully, it looks like the show recognizes that disparity and Being X shows up to rain on Tanya’s parade. This is a break from their normal interactions as this appearance is much more provocative and malicious than previous encounters . By taking control over a dead body, Being X reminds her that even though she has won some small victories, she will soon be fighting the entire world. It is funny that Tanya’s very first response on his appearance is by shooting a round into the bod as she states that this was specifically the reason she carried her gun around everywhere. Being X could arrive at any time and when he does come, she wants a gun on hand to shoot him.  This seems to have give her no real self-satisfaction and his words definitely affect her mood. Before his arrival, Tanya was practically having fun managing the battle and becoming victorious, but her mood soured greatly after God showed up, to the degree that Viktoriya noticed her drop in mood.

The after credits comedy scene worked really well here with Tanya remarking about the dangers of secondhand smoke that nobody in this timeframe is aware of. After all, it cannot be good for her to go to briefings filled with cigar smoke. It could really stunt her growth but that could be a plus on the other hand. As she stated herself, that small body of hers makes for a harder to hit target. With the appearance of God, this likely means that things are going to get a lot harder for Tanya and perhaps this could mean the birth of an archenemy is on the horizon. God does make a good villain but lacks presence to act as something for Tanya to fight against. What would be really cool now is for a kind of Joan of Arc figure leading the war on the other side. Something tangible for Tanya to take down and fight. Sadly, next week’s episode is a recap episode which doesn’t come as too much of a surprise. Considering the quality of the show so far and that this is a first effort by animation studio they have be straining themselves. Last week’s episode did show more signs of cutting corners in terms of animation and I personally would prefer a recap episode over a rushed-out mess.

Posted on 7 February 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

The only one thing I dislike about this episode was that we didn’t get into Tanya’s thoughts very much. I really wish I could have heard what she was thinking while training the troops because it would have been undoubtedly hilarious. It is clear by her reaction that she didn’t expect any of them to continue and was just waiting for them to drop out. From what I hear, we actually got the abridged version of her training as in the LN and manga, as she shot even more artillery shells at them after the original thirty-six hour time limit just to mess with them and then went through the list of the world’s most hellish training regiments. Of course, her efforts backfired as the harsh treatment of the troops gave the impression that she would kill anyone who dared tries to quit. It’s a common theme for Tanya to see things in terms of loss and gain as her previous life as a salaryman made her highly logical but apathetic.

Tanya only sees things from her perspective without taking into account the time or the mindset of others. In truth, Tanya’s mistakes are normal due to her misunderstanding of other people. To truly defeat God, she needs to stop focusing on her own goal and expand her worldview and the utter glorious tragedy of it all, is that Tanya is the kind of person so caught up in her own ideals to ever truly consider it. Despite being a clever individual, Tanya is quite childish and short sighted. After all, the main reason she is in this mess is because she prattled on to God without thinking. Tanya, to me, is how a villain should be written, not some unfazeable egoist mastermind sitting atop a tower saying everything is according to plan. Instead, she’s just a capable individual with a flawed personality and ideology, essentially making her human.

Thus, with the battalion formed, the group receives their first mission fending off an invasion by the kingdom of Diakon. I don’t know who this nation is supposed to represent but they seem to have not updated their war tactics from the 19th century. The lack of air support and rudimentary defense against mages makes Tanya sigh at their incompetence and the ensuing battle couldn’t really be called one but rather, it was a wholesale massacre and devastating defeat for the kingdom of Dakia. It seemed all too easy and I thought that God might throw a wrench into the works, but this battle does truly highlight just how ruthless Tanya really is. Her assistant Viktoriya has been acting somewhat of a moral counterpart, but even she doesn’t chastise Tanya for her level of ruthlessness.

Out of everyone in the world, she seems to is the one that knows Tanya the best as when battalion was given an explanation by their commanding officer about shelling them with artillery, Viktoriya had already begun digging a hole to avoid the bombardment. I certainly wasn’t expecting Tanya to pull out that little girl voice to announce the attack on the capital but that was certainly underhanded and remarkably clever. No doubt, this victory will push her reputation even higher which may have slipped her mind during this mission. After all, Tanya is thinking of war in terms of the modern world, so the massive numbers of Dakia troops doesn’t impress her. However, to the various militaries of this world, the news that she defeated an army with a single battalion, will no doubt have her superiors pushing her into much more dire straits.  Finally, we can see that Tanya is making use of her previous life’s knowledge as the speech she gave her battalion is almost a word for word quote from Full Metal Jacket.

Posted on 31 January 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Saga of Tanya the Evil

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

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

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

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

 

CHANGE USERNAME
Vonter
It says something in a year of great videogames when I can really recommend a Sonic game. Sonic Mania is a good platformer, with great control, charming visuals, great music and level design that feels more readable than the last games I've played in this series.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Pres and delinquent girl is my favourite but I still hope the Kuudere couple shows up. This week was hilarious with the little sister trying to get back at her brother's girlfriend only for the girlfriend to know it was her immediately and start screwing around.
SuperMario
Mine is Takurou - Chizuru (the red hair boy and orange hair girl in this week's last segment. Maybe because I have a penchant for weird girl :/
SuperMario
Tsurezure Children... makes my heart melted again. Those who still watch it, who are your favorite couples?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: and I will give you a review on... new spiderman movie or whatever. My friend drags me to watch it with her tonight, and I haven't watched any spiderman installment since the one in 2007. Well, whatever...
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I will review Hirune-hime tomorrow night hopefully. Also I have seen all his ghost in the shell work, Moribito and Eden of the east but never Cyborg 009 .
Kaiser-Eoghan
This was a long time ago however.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can remember my dads car got its window smashed then stolen, twice =<
K-Off
@Kaiser Insurance by itself won't hold you back at all, but getting a new car certainly will. The down payment alone will set you back a couple grand and you likely won't pay off the car for about 2-4 years.
K-Off
@Aidan Jeez, my condolences. @Kaiser Auto insurance covers most accidents and the rates won't go up so long as it's not your fault and you have evidence to prove it (like a dashcam).
Kaiser-Eoghan
Financially will it particularly hold you back on things like rent, etcetera?
Kaiser-Eoghan
But in all seriousness, that is one of the big reasons I haven't learned to drive, fear of that kind of thing happening, actually I think that might put me off driving if it happened to me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The car incident is an obvious assassination attempt and conspiracy . Easily avoidable by investing in transport by Dragon .
AidanAK47
@K-Off, Lightly hit the side of a Van coming out of T junction. Left light smashed,front bumper and bonnet damaged. Gotta pay for that and the vans side door.
K-Off
@Aidan Ouch. What happened to it?
AidanAK47
Yep. Crimson red. Maybe I was tempting fate.
SuperMario
@Aidan: you should blame your car because it's new and shiny it's more accident prone than others. Did you mention your car is red??
AidanAK47
Man isn't it great having a new car. It's also great when you crash your new car and now have to pay hefty repair fees. Fantastic. No injuries or anything but it's going to be a pain to repair.
SuperMario
Princess Principal write-up will have to wait this time tomorrow guys. Sorry for those who wait but nothing can stand a chance against my madness for Monogatari now
Kaiser-Eoghan
I still have a bunch of old anime vhs tapes in my attic yes, would take forever to list though.
movies4life
What to say about "one punch man" ?
movies4life
You have still VHS tapes as well in your anime collection ? (me 40)
Kaiser-Eoghan
Hard to believe I've been at this anime/manga thing since I was 11 and am now in my 30s.
SuperMario
@Boukensha: for this site specifically most of us are like you. On and off with anime; burnt out, move on with life and back again... this why I believe the readers who read this site are slightly older than your average anime audience there.
OldManBoukensha
I think I'll call myself OldManBoukensha. Hope the name sticks (this is the anonyperson)
OldManBoukensha
Thanks for the recommendations @SuperMario and @Kaiser-Eoghan san! Sometimes feels surreal how time has flown, started watching anime and discovered psgels in uni... fast forward 12 years and I hit 30 this year. lots of great memories, eagerly waiting for blog posts for favourite animes like mushishi, seirei no moribito, FMA. ah good times. Thank you for taking the baton and keeping it lively :)
SuperMario
... and it's never too late to set up your permanent username now :)
SuperMario
@Anon1329673: if you had to pick up 1 show this season, then yes Made in Abyss. I'd also recommend Princess Principal as well. For slice of life office, Shirobako? There's a show running this season from the creators of Shirobako, not neccessary set in an office place but they are about adult working as well; the name is Sakura Quest
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: Hataraki man perhaps?
Anonymous1329673
whenever I visit here I wish I had picked a permanent username. been reading psgels since 2005 :)
Anonymous1329673
and do you know of any slice of life office life anime to recommend? I loved fune wo amu from last season. melancholic yet intimate, bittersweet anime
Anonymous1329673
Hey guys, what's the best show running this season? Seems to me Made in Abyss ? If I had to pick up one show, which one would you recommend?
K-Off
@Mario That's the most common method of getting compromised nowadays, even a lot of youtubers got their channels hacked because of vulnerabilities with the phone carriers.
Lenlo
So naturally, Reflection and Ranbu will be delayed tomorrow because of a move. Last for abit. I promise. Hectic time :P
SuperMario
alright, 18if down. Now's the time that I've been looking for this season. Go watch Owari nowwww
AidanAK47
Yep, the author laid out how he wanted it to end before he died. Can't say how the new guy did as the English translation of the novels has not caught up that far.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: These were presumably written from notes left behind by the author? Is there a disconnect in quality between the non-original author novels and the ones he wrote?
AidanAK47
Also the Familiar of Zero novels are better than the anime. Now, not shakespeare but the anime did not really adapt them well. The novels took the plot a little more seriously while the anime went full slapstick with it.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, I was talking about the novels, not the anime. Someone jumped in to write the last two novels.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Of course things have changed, its been so many years since I saw the initial seasons, I couldn't tell if I'd still care.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Didn't really work in familiar of zeros case though , third and fourth seasons were a decline.
Kaiser-Eoghan
A famous example was Itazura na kiss, author died from having stuff collapse on her , anime finished the story.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Likely not now that the author is dead. There are some occasions where people jump in to complete the work like Familer of Zero but in most cases it is just left unfinished.
AidanAK47
@Movies, Watched about ten episodes and then just never got back to it. I thought it was alright.
@Amagi, Indeed. Hopefully they won't be around that much.
Amagi
Apocrypha is pretty good when the MCs aren't around
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Movies: Yes, stopped after he got the powerup and then the manga went on a long hiatus, I liked the art though, the anime was tedious though, filler-y and censored.
movies4life
You guys remember d.Gray-man ?
Kaiser-Eoghan
...I think one of the two working on highschool of the deads manga died/
SuperMario
@anon1327403: funny that you mentioned Highschool of the Dead because I'm planning to watch that one real soon. But to answer your question, as far as I am aware of, no, there isn't any announcement regarding the new adaptation.
Anonymous1327403
Does anyone know if High School of the Dead will ever be picked up by another person
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm still watching stuff though, just finished the Cobra ovas last night, fun camp in the flash gordon/Barbarella vein, though it misses the soundtrack from the old 80s version.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I love a good Bond type spy thingnow and then but I'd LOVE to see a more serious anime take on the genre.
Kaiser-Eoghan
If kakegurui is enjoyable in the same way a trash-exploitation film is I could see myself watching .
Kaiser-Eoghan
Count me in for those who weren't happy with the progress of abyss' manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Then again my gaming days are long long in the past for the most part. The humour in gamers would just turn me off now, I've lost interested in most anime comedy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I was aware of ANN being down, for the most part I really only skimmed their articles. I wish sega would just put Sonic down, its been on decline for so long.
SuperMario
@KTravlos: have fun with whatever you doing in the next 10 days mates. And if you have time, sample Princess Principal as well
KTravlos
I will be off the net the next 10 days, so sorry if I do not answer any replies etc. Have a good time all! See you later.
KTravlos
took the hiatus of my shows as a chance to sample the current season. Saw first episodes of Kakeguiri, Abyss, and Altair. Kakeguiri and Abyss really did have great first episodes, that grab you. Altair was a bit too old-fashioned, but I will probably continue watching it. Kakeguiri had excellent OP and ED, while Abyss had in general great music. And yeah, you guys were not kidding about beauty
SuperMario
And I still enjoy Gamers thoroughly. Not sure if it can keep up with the misunderstanding mess about relationships from the main cast but so far the show is hilarious
KTravlos
so now I know about why ANN did not work. @Holystockings yes, again I should detest it for many things it has, but they pulled it off and I like it.
Holystockings
I'll be honest here. I would have never guessed that Kakegurui would have been this good.
Vonter
@AidanAK47 This year there have been a lot of good games. Too many to play seriously. I do wonder how deliberations would be since more than scores or genres I don't feel a all out winner, more than different games excelling at different things.
Lenlo
So finally finished Kado, and I have to say I am not a fan of the shark jump.
Lenlo
Really? Had no idea about the news network site
AidanAK47
Also too many games coming this month. SubaHibi, Sonic Mania and Ys Seven. Not to mention cold steel now out. I still need to get blood orange complete and in comes a small, medium and two extra large time sinks.
AidanAK47
And in other news Voltorn season three is out but only seven episodes long. With another fourth season coming in October which is 6 episodes long. I wonder why Netflix are spilting up seasons like this?
AidanAK47
So, not sure if anyone has heard this or not but the Anime News Network site has been hacked. Hence why you can no longer access it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: blancanieves was modern silent take on snow white, a different spin on the story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Fun fact, Mitchum appears in a cameo in the cape fear remake.
Kaiser-Eoghan
ha, I wouldn't mind seeing a gag in a comedy manga series where they did a silent throwback episode.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The expressionist visuals of some of those silent films appeal to me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
My only issue with maddin is that he is hard to marathon, that style as unique and funny as it is only works in small doses.
Kaiser-Eoghan
La Antenna was another good example of modern silent filmaking. Annnnd, this one is SUPER obscure/rare: http://hawkmenblues.blogspot.ie/2013/11/yumemiru-yoni-nemuritai-kaizo-hayashi.html
SuperMario
It's like this: The Artist gets the "look" of silent film, but Guy Maddin's works get the "feel" of it
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can remember Mitchum was in an underated remake of the big sleep...
...though you could really tell even just from listening to him speak he was a pothead.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I agree with you that Guy Maddin's works are more of a representative of neo-silent than the Artist (the Artist is just so... wide-appealing for my taste. It tries to please everyone). I always feel that Maddin is born in a wrong era. Had he born in the silent era he'd definately be a legend.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I don't blame the audience from the 50s who didn't get the film. I didn't quite get it the first time either but the film just keep growing on me. I remembet Robert Mitchum in his noir detective role as well, most notably his role in Out of the Past. The lead girl in that movie has a very typical femme fatale look as well, which mean she's gorgeous
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I've been looking into Guy Maddin's work, its occasionally funny in an absurdist way and alot of the appeal comes from how strange his films are, while I think that film the artist was a good take on silent films, Maddins tributes to silent film are far more successful.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: People weren't ready for night of the hunter in the 50s, one of those baffling situations that it flopped when originally released, frustratingly that director never got to work again. For me I think that was one of Robert Mitchum's best roles, along with his one in Cape fear.
SuperMario
Ahhh, clumsy finger. Whatever...
SuperMario
*Diary kf the Country Priest of course
SuperMario
Should get into Diry of the Countey Priest soon, but consider it's Bresson's movie I have no doubt it'll be hard to swallow. Also the priest in The Night of the Hunter
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: =) All priest films quiver before the might of Diary of the country priest, Nazerin and Winter light.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: in the same vein with Spotlight, right? 2016 wasn't a good year for priest in movies it seems
Kaiser-Eoghan
Oh, that guy also directed El Club, I liked that one, seriously grim story about exiled priests.
SuperMario
@movies4life: Gin no Guardian is a bif meh for me.
SuperMario
I watched No at the time of its release. Good watch although I don't remember much of it now. Not only they have the same actors as Neruda, those films are directed from the same director. This fude also directed Jackie last year that star Nayalie Portman as the First Lady
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Movies: The other Chinese anime attempts aren't any better I hear.
movies4life
Watch in a day the whole season of Gin no Guardian. Is have so much potential in story and animation but somehow something missing. maybe is just for growing up Kids
AidanAK47
@Anon, Like SAO season 2 then. Myself and a friend tried to watch that for the sole reason of taking the piss out of it. Ended up not finishing it because there wasn't anything to take the piss out of because barely anything happened each episode and it was so boring that we couldn't take it anymore.
KTravlos
I have seen "The Secret in their Eyes". A good film. I do recommend "Neruda", and the film "No" which as some of the same actors.
Anonymous1324414
People thought they were 'ironically' watching a bad movie until they realized the movie's so bad it can't even be enjoyed on an ironic level.
AidanAK47
I am not surprised that the Emoji movie is bad. But I am quite astonished that people seem to be surprised that it's bad.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Gah, I would hate that, having to put up with a kid in cinemas, having to see , having to financially benefit some anti-art film like that.
movies4life
and i watch Emoji with my daughter....I fall asleep
Kaiser-Eoghan
Secret in the eyes remake was pretty much pointless.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Anon-The virgin witch
Kaiser-Eoghan
I am entirely too old to place any care or importance on whether I sleep with someone or not/ever.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I am entirely too far behind to catch up on monogatari.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I enjoy the surrealism that is present in some Latin filmaking. As for secret in their eyes, its got that great stadium scene and twist later on, though some of the exchanges between actors/characters seemed awkward, overall while I liked it, it felt like an extended tv episode.
SuperMario
I'm also looking forwards to listen to their new OPs. Mnogatari's soundtrack is the only anime soundtrack that I bought a physical CD. Still listen to all those songs quite frequently
SuperMario
Since it is confirmed that there'll be 7 episodes, I think it'll be: Mayoi Hell (2 episodes), Hitagi Rendezvous (2), Ougi Dark (3)
SuperMario
So Owarimonogatari will air in 2 days. I honestly don''t know how I should review it (by episode? by each arc? by day? Rating or not?) but dang I'm gonna review it.
SuperMario
You can try another Latin American film, The Secret in Their Eyes (not the REMAKE one). There was a 10 minutes unbroken (CGI) shot that follow the leads in the football stadium to look for their suspect. Quite impressive
SuperMario
@KTravlos: I missed my chance to watch Neruda when it was screening in my local cinema; but I've heard good things about the film. People said it's an unconventional but effective biopic film. The more I watch Latin American cinema, the more I feel the unique charm from the area that I don't feel anywhere else.
Masky
Still, weird manga because its kind of increasingly obvious that the people behind Nana are the bad guys .-. They are just overly sinister.
Masky
So skipped third chapter and just read fourth chapter of Talentless Nana. Ok, seems like it might have more of hook now? Villain protagonist vs hero antagonist?(who also can't be killed off first because they are immortal, so she would need to figure out how to deal with him first)
KTravlos
@Anon. Nobody cares mate.

@SuperMario. Hey I watched Neruda last week. It was interesting. Have you seen it?
AidanAK47
@Anon, Well we can all make up imaginary sexploits, it's not really something worth bragging about. Perhaps fanfiction would be a better outlet?
Anonymous1323777
I enjoy posting on obscure anime blog chat boxes about my sexploits. ᕕ( ⏒ ロ ⏒ )ᕗ
movies4life
Just watch Ajin both seasons and not sure ...good or just ok
Anonymous1323481
Just watch Ajin both seasons and not sure ...good or just ok
Vonter
I'm also as of now noticing this Isekai trend. And to be honest the most disappointing aspect for me, is how formulaic the worlds are. This is also a complain in RPGs. But I don't get how like 7 or more of this, feels like the setting could be the same world. I don't know, I just think there should be ways to make each feel more unique.
Vonter
I went to Chicago and bought a Switch and lots of manga. I was happy with my choices. Murcielago is a violent buddy cop. Delicious Dungeon is a creative take on a dungeon crawler setting and funny. The 7th garden is a well composed manga, if anything a good example for sequential art reference. I also read several chapters of Mushoku Tensei, which is Isekai but heck it did made me care.
AidanAK47
It's like the difference between reading Konosuba and watching Konosuba. I read the novels up to date and while it's fine it's like reading the script to a comedy skit. It's not nearly as entertaining as seeing it in action. The animation and actors just added so much more to it.
AidanAK47
@Puran, I actually agree with you on that. I read the manga before watching the anime and couldn't really get into it. However I felt that things would change when seeing it animated and indeed it did. Currently I would place the anime adaption above it's source material.
Anonymous1321546
3000 Leagues in Search of Mother
Puran
@Anon, thank you for the update on your sex life.

In other news, I read the manga for Made in Abyss and I didn't really like it...? Felt kinda boring and soulless? While the anime seemed to have some sort of magic and wonder. It kinda spoiled my enjoyment of the Anime. I think I'll drop it for a while and marathon it later to let the bad taste from my mouth subside.
AidanAK47
@Anon, That's virgin talk.
Anonymous1320940
my girlfriend is coming back home and I am so looking forward to getting my cock sucked again. Sex starved since Wednesday
Kaiser-Eoghan
@K-off: Genuinely missed Tsugumi when her character got the axe.
AidanAK47
Getting the made in abyss post up tonight but it looks like the other two are going to have to wait. Kakegurui's sixth episode will be airing this week and Fate's episode won't be subbed until friday. I will see if I can get secondhand subs to do a writeup but I would prefer to watch it with UTW subs.
K-Off
The spin-offs are actually a good read because it's essentially similar to the opening few chapters of the main story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah seoul station, that director (or at least the animator) has done some other animated films that I've yet to get round to.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@K-off: Maybe a sequel or more spinoffs planned? I've not read any of the spinoff come to think of it.
K-Off
The film was interesting, but I remember I watched it after Train to Busan and its animated prequel so I found it lacking in comparison.
K-Off
I'll just say that the manga does not end climatically nor in any interesting way. It ends up focusing on a new set of characters near the end (what kind of writer thinks that's a good idea?) and rushes the MC's story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The film adaptation of I am a hero is better than it has any right to be.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*sci-fi
Kaiser-Eoghan
@K-off: Everything after the sci-twist started going downhill. I haven't read the final chapter yet.
K-Off
@Kaiser Did you catch up on I am a Hero? Just finished it and...I feel like the series seriously fizzled out halfway through. I'd like to talk about the ending if you have.
Anonymous1318603
That is the best Anime site I can find.it let me not register.
Lenlo
Apologies, The Reflection for this week should be up tomorrow. Rather busy is all because I have a 4 month long project presentation tomorrow.
AidanAK47
@K-Off, I think there may be about three of them in my county. I tried a Hybrid but it just didn't do anything for me. If it was out yet and if I was rich I would buy a Faraday FFzero1.
K-Off
@Aidan Right, forgot about that. I guess it really would be a problem out in the sticks, that's what hybrids are for I suppose. I don't know about urban areas in Ireland, but in NYC and LA electric charging stations are everywhere.
SuperMario
@Aidan: I'm having fun with it now; don't spoil it man :)
AidanAK47
@K-Off, I wanted to buy an electric car originally but was talked out of it because we don't have gas stations with chargers for one.
@Supermario, Ho boy. I often joke about fan-service series being porn but that show quite literally is porn. The story isn't deep either as it's omnibus format so the story resets every four episodes or so.
SuperMario
I am in the mood today so I finally checking out that controversial Yosuga no Sora - to see if it has any deeper, more intimate message or it's just a harem setting for soft-incest-porn that despise everyone. Wish me luck guys
K-Off
Yeah, that's a shame. But I think it's bound to happen, now that shot put got one.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think I would find it quite difficult to find a storyline that made mathematics enjoyable. Not a numbers guy, more on the arty side.
Anonymous1312485
I don't think I know anything Japanese young people hate more than math.
K-Off
On a tangent, reading Suugaku Girl got me thinking about why mathematics hasn't managed to slip onto the shonen hype train. Imagine all the possibilities for over dramatization.
K-Off
@Aidan Awesome. I have a 2016 Nissan Sentra myself. Maybe in eight years I'll be rich enough to get an electric car.
K-Off
Got my car back, the only pain was the 2 hours wasted at the DMV and the money I spent getting it back. $230 for towing+overnight storage fees, $100 for an impound release fee from the NYPD, totalling to $330.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: for an anthology film, Wild Tales is very consistent in tones and theme, mostly because thises tales are directed and written by the same guy (although if you put it that way it's not techically an anyhology film). I'm sure you'll enjoy the movie Kaiser
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've 20,000 something in the bank, I should travel. Haven't left Ireland since 2013. I want to go to Prague.
Total users: 30

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