Posted on 11 October 2017 with categories: Anime Reviews, Currently Watching:, The Reflection

The superhero genre has been undergoing a surge in popularity in recent years. From the Marvel movies in the West to anime series like My Hero Academia in the East, super heroes are everywhere.  As such, for good or ill, it was inevitable that we would get a merging of the two. The Reflection is one such result of this union. The Reflection tries to do a lot, succeeding on some and failing terribly at others. The end result is a an inconsistent mess of seemingly stitched together episodes and story moments.

Lets jump in.

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Posted on 2 October 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, The Reflection

In the penultimate episode of The Reflection, we finally get to see Wraiths master plan come to fruition and the Idol group finally becomes relevant. Lets jump in!

Reflection starts off with a flashback to 3 years ago, to the event of the Reflection. We see a young Elen looking out her window, as she is hit by both the black smoke and the green light. Hopefully we get some more explanation as to what this does. Did it bring her dead brother back to life? Split personality? Who knows, but considering its become a main plot point, it better get explained. Afterwords we cut back to Wraith, X-On and Steel Ruler in the underground cave. Wraith does a minor monologue about how she/he needed to remove Elen from themself, but that Elen had to do it herself. This raises more questions, was she not real? Which one is the original? Does it even matter?

Regardless, after the monologue and a quick side jaunt to lecture X-On, we cut to the desert. Here there is a ring of woman, the Allen women I presume. We are given a glimpse of a map of the United States, with purple and green dots all over it. Forcing them to use their powers far beyond their ability, we see the Allen women all begin to glow green. In a flash of light everyone, every Reflected in America, is teleported to White Sands New Mexico. Yes, that does include our illusive Idol Group. Turns out even Wraith was so fed up with them that they literally teleported them into the middle of the plot. This combined with their general uselessness has caused myself and many others to fear they are going to pull some deus-ex machina idol song to save the day in the final episode.

With the Idols part in this episode done, we not pan over to X-On and our heroes. They are all standing together on the top of a hill. I-Guy prepares to soar up to Wraith and deliver a beat down but X-On, now bearing ‘Flaming Furys’ fire power, holds him back. Wraith steps forward at the top of a dune and prepares to make another speech. Luckily, its not a speech about destroying humans but about how they number to few to do anything against the humans. There doesn’t seem to be much purpose to it now, but later on in the episode we see that this is all setup. X-On however gets a random cell-phone call at the end. The ringtone got me, I was unprepared for this, so credit where credit it due. The call itself from the government woman, as she has something to tell him.

Apparently the US Army is reacting to their sudden appearance in the desert and is bringing in a number of helicopters. We see them approach on the horizon, in formation. The soldiers yell over the intercom, asking the Reflected to leave peacefully. With this all part of her plan however, Wraith has one of her cronies make the Soldiers fire on the Reflected. In reaction, the Reflected naturally fight back. We get to see some interesting powers on display here, as the Reflected attack the soldiers, X-On and co hold the Reflected back, and the Soldiers retaliate. It will be interesting to see if, in the final episode, X-On manages to take all of these powers.

Our heroes aside though, this is all a very clever plan from Wraith. She/he makes it out as if the military is starting this conflict. By bringing them all in one place however, she is the one to have instigated this. She becomes a savior to the Reflected. Over the course of this fight, through Michael’s Reflected vision however, we see some of the Brightstar Reflected become Darkness Reflected. There was zero evidence of this earlier in the series, but it seems sufficient anger or whatever will cause a Reflected to change. I suspect it works in reverse as well and that is where the Idol group will come in.

With X-On and the others interfering in her plan though, Wraith is not content to sit idly by. She sends Steel Ruler and her other minions out to stop them, though Ruler appears to hesitate. Disappointingly, we see the Bat Man return, this time in a shiny new metal costume. Say what you will about evil, it has great health care apparently. After getting his wing blasted off by I-Guy and apparently not dying, he has returned for one final showdown. With all of the fights set, Wraith reaches out and shoots dark electricity out at all of the Reflected gathered. Is she taking their power? Mind controlling them? We have no idea what her power is, so there is no way to tell. Finally, The Reflection pans over to our Idol Group, who have found their luggage and are ready to save the day!

All in all, another disappointing episode of The Reflection. There’s no consequences, no one gets hurt (Except for I-Guy) or stays dead (Except for I-Guys team). The writers took their time with the story in the first half, but have sped through it in the second. The pacing is all over the place and we still don’t know the Idol groups powers! There’s far to much to cover in a final episode, I just dont see how they will get it done well.

Suppose we will see next week on, The Reflection! See you then.

Posted on 26 September 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, The Reflection

This week The Reflection finally gives us some quality time with our main villain, as Wraiths plan hits its final stages. Lets jump in.

Reflection opens on Elen arriving at the mansion we saw at the end of last week, meeting evil!Stan Lee. Deciding that her decision to give herself up for the sake of others was a poor one, Elen immediately starts running through the mansion. Teleporting from intersection to intersection, rather than simply… exiting out a window? Not sure what she is doing here, but its necessary for the big reveal at the end. Meanwhile, our crew continues to follow Vy as she leaps through the streets. Eventually she reaches the mansion, busting in through a side window! Inside, as Lisa and co arrive, we see evil!Stan Lee sipping a nice cup of tea, expecting them. Apparently, he was the one telling Vy where to go and how to reach him, leading her to this very room, but surprise! Its a trap!

The mansion begins to burst into flame, as the Russian Ninja and Human Thunderbolt appear in the room. The man who can phase through walls comes up from the floor and whisks Stan Lee through a wall to safety. Unprepared, our heroes are quickly overwhelmed. The floor gives out, causing them all to fall. As they do, we see Elen through a doorway, walking down a hall. Its a slow-motion shot, with her looking into the room, so clearly this isn’t real. Could it be the one who can create illusions from before? (more…)

Posted on 19 September 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, The Reflection

This week The Reflection continues on towards its finale. Finally all of our characters are in one place and raring for a fight.

Reflection starts off right back with the Idol group, being unable to decide between beef or fish. Apparently an episode named for the dilemma wasn’t enough. Reflection quickly cuts back to Elen and Steel Ruler though, in the street where we left them. A van pulls up and Elen quickly gets in, riding away with Steel Ruler and her group. Right behind them however is the Government woman and her squad, tracking them. I am curious if Elen knew about this and set it up, or if this is happening without her knowledge. I would also like to know what assurance’s Elen has that the hostages will be released, since she so meekly stepped into the van.

With Elen on her way, Reflection cuts back to X-On, Lisa and the Detective. Its very quiet as Lisa is “asleep”, X-On is brooding and the Detective is drunk. Its a pretty weird scene that hangs for awhile, panning from each character doing nothing. Suppose we deserve to know what everyone is doing right now. We cut back to Elen and see the Government Woman tailing her, very very closely. Its almost ridiculous, as no one could fail to notice them. Steel Ruler tells one of her lackeys, Conman we learn, to do something. We saw him in action briefly before, and it appears his ability is to cause illusions. He fills the Government truck with fake snakes and it almost causes them to drive off the road.  Unfortunately for them, the Government Woman holds out and takes control of the wheel, keeping them on the road.

With that plan foiled, Steel Ruler tries something else. Using the ability we have seen before, they begin to phase the car through buildings, driving as if they weren’t there. This allows them to completely ignore roads. However, somehow, the government managed to put a tracker on their car and through clever driving manages to keep up with them. Somehow in all this, the streets of LA are empty and not a single person sees any of this, but hey, budget concerns I suppose. Eventually Steel Ruler and the Government are driving along a large storm drain. With all of her previous plans foiled, Steel Ruler only has one thing left, raw power.

We see the Lightning man, from Vy and Michael’s first episode, leap out the back of the moving van. The Government smashes into him and goes flying, no doubt because of his electricity. As he approaches the wreck to finish the job, Vy arrives to hold him down. Its a quite fight, before the helicopters and such appear. He steps into the water and zips away, using his power intelligently. Before we continue however I have a quick question. If you had helicopters and that large a group, why not use them to track Steel Ruler? They clearly weren’t being stealthy about it already and a squad of helicopters is much more difficult to take down. If flown high enough they are also difficult to notice. It all seems rather poorly planned to me.

The helicopters arrive and take Vy and Michael away. We cut back to the motel and find it surrounded, with X-On and Lisa taken into custody. They are escorted to an underground base and briefed on the situation. The entire time X-On hasnt said a word, yet everyone here seems to know who he is, whispering his name as if hes Voldemort. We are given a quick repeat of a few scenes and some more explanation as to the Darkness and the “Brightstar”, but none of it is particularly interesting. During all this, we see Lisa and Vy wanting to leave, though for different reasons. Lisa just hates the whole situation while apparently Vy is being “drawn” to Steel Ruler/Wraith. Deciding that’s a good thing, X-On tells Lisa to let Vy go and she escapes through the ceiling. Apparently the military wasn’t prepared for giant robots and metal monsters.

Soaring through the air after Vy, they are seem by Ian who is driving along looking for more punks to smash. He diverts course to follow them, meaning he will definitely be at the upcoming final battle. While driving away, Ians fancy new car passes by the Idols school bus, marking them as finally being in LA. The episode ends with Elen arriving at a nice house and meeting evil Stan Lee. Apparently, Wraith is ready and waiting.

Not much happened this week, and little of what did was interesting. Lots of bad shots and weird directing, but the car chase at-least was nice to watch. A good amount of action and some nice animation. The Lightning Man in particular, with the flat blue shades, looked great. Most important of all this week though, the Idol group is final in place to actually do something. Will we learn their names? Maybe their powers? Will we get to see them do anything near what they have been hyped/built up for? Find out next week, on The Reflection.

Later.

Posted on 12 September 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, The Reflection

This week, The Reflection opens on a young girl with black hair, running through a ruined town. She clutches food to her breast and hides in a broken down car in some rubble. From the picture of her family to the trash lying around, we can assume this is her home. Later she walks through the bleak streets, everything around her sad and forlorn. As she looks to the sky, asking for help, we finally see her face and the scene cuts to last weeks end card. Elen and Steel Ruler, same skin and hair color as the little girl, stand apart on a street. It would seem we are going to start getting some backstory on our villains.

After the OP, we see a Reflected biker gang claiming some turf from a rival. As expected, super powers go a long way against normal people. As the conflict ends, a car approaches and I-Guy hops out. Wearing all black armor, Ian has transformed from Tony Stark to Batman between the two episodes. Still upset about his team, Ian has no time for these fools. Hes breaking bones and running people into the pavement, looking for Wraith. Nice to see there was real effect on him, but sadly this is all we get of him this episode. Instead, most of this week focuses on Elen and her relationships with those around here.

After Ian’s only scene, we cut back to Elen and Steel Ruler. A short chase scene ensues, with Elen using her ability to teleport and run away. Eventually, after some interesting metal bending scenes with Steel Ruler, Elen finds herself on-top of her opponent. Apparently, Steel Ruler is unable to kill Elen, as Wraith wants/needs her for something.

Throughout this whole thing, ham-fisted dialogue is being thrown back and forth, awkward pauses still occasionally there. During on of these exchanges, we get a flashback of Steel Ruler before the Reflection, after she had been mugged. Dying in the street, the black smoke falls on her and saves her, giving her the power she has today. Naturally, the first thing she does it kill the guy who knifed her. Once this is over, we get the core of why she is here. Wraith wants a trade, Elen for the swamp hostages.

To help Elen make a decision, Steel Ruler hands her a USB stick, said to have information on X-On. After some more back and forth, about how Elen can actually save people this time, they agree to meet again at dawn. Elen is quickly found by the government woman from episode 1, who has apparently been spying on them. During this Elen sticks the USB into a government computer, with absolutely no one trying to stop her, and opens it up. Inside are files detailing a laboratory explosion, with one survivor, presumably X-On. With this little tidbit though, we cut to our favorite idol group.

Really, these idols are doing nothing. We only have 10 second clips of them and no character development, we don’t even know their names. I have no idea how The Reflection is going to introduce them and make us care about them in the time remaining. Who even knows when they will finally meet our main team! All these little cuts do is distract us from the actual things happening to our main cast. If I cared about any of them besides Ian, it would infuriate me.

The pop idol group aside, soon Elen confronts X-On, who once again refuses to say anything. We know that the lab event couldn’t have caused the Reflection, as it happened 20 years ago, yet there isn’t much else to go on. Their little tiff over, X-On returns to their motel to talk about what has happened with the government woman and his detective friend. While they are talking, we pan over and see little Lisa wide awake, hearing everything. We cut one last time to the Idols, before seeing Elen step into the plaza with Steel Ruler. Cut to ED.

As it currently stands, there are few things to like about The Reflection. The story has its moments for sure and is clearly building to something, but the majority of the characters simply are not likable or very engaging. The few that are, such as Ian/I-Guy, get little screen time and the random cuts to the Idol group isn’t helping. With Elen joining the bad guys in exchange for the hostages, maybe we will get some more time with them. An opportunity to learn why they are doing what they do and to finally learn who Wraith is. Should that happen, The Reflection might end on an upswing. We shall see.

See you next week folks!

 

Posted on 5 September 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, The Reflection

For the first time this season, while watching The Reflection, time just flew by and the ending arrived with my noticing. This week, The Reflection stepped up its game. Lets jump into it.

Reflection opens up right where last week left off, with I-Guy bursting in through the ceiling. A short exchange of dialogue, and then the fight begins! There are multiple battles spread through this first half of the episode. I-Guy versus Dead Wing, X-On versus the Fire Witch and Lisa versus Steel Ruler. All in all some good stuff. Aside from some curious still frames when Elen is teleporting, this was the best animated episode yet. The fire during X-On’s clash. The metal from Steel Ruler when she was flinging cars around. It all looked very nice with the flat color style. Well done Reflection, though the projects from I-Guy looked rather out of place.

As the fights wind down Nina and Margaret, the old woman from Texas and her daughter, are caught by the unnamed man who can slide through objects. While being taken, Nina is teleported away by some unknown force and Margaret… dies. Unexpected to say the least. There is some quick dialogue between Elen and Steel Ruler before the former flees the scene, their job done. Meanwhile I-Guy is on his way back and arrives to have a chat with our heroes.

As it turns out, X-On is not happy. I-Guys performance turned the whole event into a mess and X-On calls him a lighthouse rather than a hero. This hurts I-Guy, the man who know only wants an audience. The whole thing spirals down into a quick fistfight between the two and what a fight it is. Short, only a few seconds long, but the animation here was great. X-Ons duck, I-Guys lazer, and then the burst of fire. The subsequent throw. It was easily the best animated shot Reflection has had this whole season. With Reflections artstyle, it looked great in motion. Now just give us that for a whole 30 seconds.

Animation aside, this punch shows us things are starting to crack among our heroes. I-Guy flies away pissed and we see later on Elen is getting fed up with X-Ons attitude. Both head off to spend some time on their own. Elen wanders a bit, but I-Guy, also known as Ian, heads on home. X-Ons words clearly struck him, as he grabs his guitar and heads out to perform on the street abit. We see once again his need for attention and recognition. We see some flashbacks of his career. His first demo, the success of his song, and let me say real quick here: I want all 3 versions of this song. During his time on the street though, Ian is confronted by a very mysterious figure, Wraith.

Wraith shows up and simply dumps money into his case, congratulating Ian on a job well done. She calls him a lighthouse, a fool, a “Hollow King”, parroting X-On a lot. Pointing out that he’s nothing without his team. She drives his inadequacies home, before disappearing. Ian runs back to his home after this, only to find something terribly wrong. His entire team, lay dead in their control room. This was completely unexpected. I wasn’t expecting anyone to die this season, yet not only did they kill Margaret, but I-Guy’s team as well. The red light flashes, tinting the entire scene, harsh black lines over everything. The art is used well here, it really works. Ian is the best-written character so far, and this is exactly the impetus he needs to better himself. The Reflection is giving us a hero’s journey for Ian and he isn’t even the main character!

All in all, a solid episode. I am excited for what is to come. Elen looks to be considering other options, Ian is preparing to go Punisher with a new suit and renewed drive and X-On is lost with nowhere to go.

Last week I mentioned how The Reflection was starting to feel empty with its episodes, but I can see now it was still working on setting itself up. It took awhile to do so and it wasn’t perfect, but we have a compelling story ladies and gentleman! See you next week!

Posted on 29 August 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, The Reflection

Hello everyone, apologies for the joint Reflection review, but driving 1400 miles from Texas to DC made for a busy weekend. I ended up late on episode 5 and just decided to bunch it an 6 together. Shouldn’t happen again and with that said, let’s jump into it.

Alot happened during these 2 episodes, of varying levels of quality. First, lets talk about episode 5. We start with an introduction to some of those staying with Merchant and Trader. As suspected, they aren’t selling Reflected, but rather protecting them. Some of the scenes here are odd, with the lack of eyes and the silence, but I get its purpose. After this we jump to Lisa, searching New Orleans for Elen and real Jazz. Sadly, she doesn’t find much good Jazz. Eventually she finds a bar, where the child Elen saved is playing however! A bar fight ensues and the child manages to get Lisa out of there.

Little did either of them know however, Steel Ruler and the Racist Cop from earlier episodes are meeting on a balcony. Looks like the Cop does have much love for Merchant and Trader. As we see later on, this is all building to a final confrontation. We cut back to Merchant and Trader, who we now learn are named Vy and Michael. We are gifted with some nice backstory for the two, revealing their abilities and how Michael is blind. Loving the handicapped cast so far. We get some exposition with Elen about the types of Reflected, and some warm words towards Vy. Sadly not everyone is having a good time right now, as we jump back to Lisa.

Turns out, people are still after her and the child. A truck comes by and swipes them up, taking them who knows where. Taken to a construction site, it looks like they are being interrogated about Michael and Vys location. The child, of course, spills the beans and reveals their location in the swamp. With this info, the Cops gather a group and head out. They get on their boats and head towards the swamp, where they are intercepted by Vy, Michael and Elen. What follows is one of the more disappointing fights i’ve seen. Vy has her armor destroyed quickly, Michael is useless and Elen is the actually the most useful for once. As well, in the middle of the fight Vy is miraculously cured and able to control her powers!

All in all a disappointing episode, and Reflection doesn’t do much better in episode 6. We continue investigating the Allen family, finding more and more are kidnapped. Along with that, everyone in the mansion got taken behind their backs. How? No idea, but it happened. We do get to see more of the Japanese Idol group though, as we transition from one burger scene to another. Looks like they have been fighting their own battles and will soon be having a trip to America. Suppose they had to get involved in the plot somehow.

For the rest of the squad however, they next stop is San Antonio Texas! Nice place, but expensive to live in. Just as they arrive and track down some Allen’s, Steel Ruler and her group of evil Reflected arrive as well. Battles over the Allen family members occur, with our group losing each one and public perception going down. One amusing scene in all this is Lisa’s inexperience though. She pops her robot in the middle of a crowded shop, unable to move without destroying it. Love it when characters aren’t immediately competent.

With all these losses, X-On decides to call in a favor to try and even the odds. He calls in Jim, a private investigator and a friend of his. In just a few seconds on his computer, he tracks down one last Allen. An old lady in a barber shop named Nina. Some old texan lady banter occurs, Nina refusing to budge, before eventually being taken anyways. Our heroes give Steel Ruler the slip and head off to California to find Nina’s daughter. Once they do however, they realize their mistake. Steel Ruler was using them to find this missing Allen and now wants her for herself. But whats that? Whats that song playing?! Its I-Guy, the best character in the show!

He smashes through the roof, challenges Steel Ruler, and we end on a cut of grimacing metal headpiece. Am I excited? Alittle. For the plot? Hardly. But I-Guy is back and we get some more great music and a better character.

All in all, some packed but ultimately empty episodes. There were many minor things I could have pointed out, but with 2 episodes in a single week and my tendency to write more than I should, I wanted to keep it short-ish.

Expect a single episode cover next week! Talk to ya later!

Posted on 15 August 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, The Reflection

The Reflection shows its strengths this week with strong character arcs, a deepening overall plot and some subtleties with its setting. Only thing left to fix is the frame count, but i’ve beat that horse to death, so let’s just jump right in.

Reflection opens up the episode right after the end of last weeks. X-On, Lisa and Elen sit in Elen’s pickup truck in the middle of nowhere. Not sure where she’s getting wifi from, but that’s a small matter. After some banter, where X-On once again shows himself to be a lovable jerk, we get to see what happened after they flew away. Turns out Lisa has a limit to her power, as they power down in mid air and plummet to earth! It’s a fun scene and makes Lisa seem a lot less powerful than she did before. Cutting back to the truck, Elen has found that the women of the Allen family are going missing across the country. Furthermore, each was hit by the Reflection. Apparently Wraith and our band of villains have a plan, kidnapping Reflected one by one. Their next stop? New Orleans. Let the race begin.

While they travel to the South, we jump over to best-man I-Guy who having a crisis of confidence in the West. Turns out he’s not some boy-scout, but a thrill seeker who only wants a stage. Saving people is not his priority, but rather getting seen saving people. While talking all this out with his crew, I-Guy learns of a gang gathering in a warehouse. Not one to leave such a meeting alone, he flies out and crashes the weapons deal. Rather than waiting the gang immediately shoot at I-Guy, which I appreciated, before being taken down. The real threat however is the sociopath businessman selling them the guns. Every blow explodes, marking him as a Reflected. Looks like we are in for a fight!

Or so I though. The fight ended as quickly as it began, as I-Guy grabs him and flies away! Dumping both of them in the ocean. Always one for flare I-Guy makes it another show, ending in a pose for the camera. From that pose we transition to a newspaper, which Ian Izette the man behind the mask of I-Guy, is reading. Ian is not a fan of how popular I-Guy has gotten, upset that people aren’t focusing on him and his song. Its interesting to see a man try to compete with himself. Im curious if Ian will give up on this and become I-Guy in full, of if the persona of I-Guy will start to take some hits. Either way its intriguing to see a man hate himself, while loving himself as much as Ian does.

To deal with this attitude, Ian decides to go out and write a new song! Only for his producer to shut him down, instead wanting to work with I-Guy. Upset and in a downward spiral from this, Ian visits a club and jacks the mic from the current band. He soon gets hit with stage fright and backs down however. Its an awkward and very vulnerable moment for the character, as he slowly falls apart. After running away however he reappears as I-Guy, blaring the song and being a true sky show. Even through his helmet he seems sad. We can see from this that Ian gains confidence from the armor, that he is afraid of being judged as Ian Izette the One Hit Wonder. I really hope this arc continues into future episodes and isn’t just a one-off event, as Ian is currently the most interesting character in The Reflection. Sadly that is all we get of Ian this episode as we jump back to X-On, Lisa and Elen, but I look forward to seeing him again.

Now in New Orleans, our group sets out in search of the Allens. Lisa is loving the trip, exclaiming how beautiful the ocean is only to have it pointed out as a lake. That was such an unexpected comedic moment for me, I actually laughed. Soon after arriving in New Orleans though the comedy dies down and we learn something is very wrong. Reflected, or refs as people here call them, are being kidnapped by a duo known as ‘Merchant’ and ‘Trader’. They kidnap and ‘scrap’ the Reflected, feeding into the racism of the city. Turns out when racism based on color is outlawed, the south will just find something else. We see this throughout the town even, as a group of children pick on another child who hung out with the kidnapped Reflected. Being the beautiful idiot she is, Elen can’t let this stand. She pops in, saves him, and pops out only to be quickly snatched up by ‘Merchant’ and ‘Trader’. Boy these guys are fast with interesting designs to boot!

X-On and Lisa later learn about Elen’s kidnapping, Lisa being determined to save her. X-On seems to not care, only to be guilted into it. Once again we see that our heroes are not perfect. Ian is arrogant, X-On is uncaring, Lisa is naive and Elen acts on a whim. Its good character moments as we head into what appears to be our first running arc. Elen wakes up in a fancy house out in the swamp, filled with what I can only assume are all of the kidnapped Reflected! ‘Merchant’ and ‘Trader’ are bad guys, posing as good guys! Kidnapping people to keep them safe in this swamp. I am legitimately interested to hear from these guys, their plans and ideals, to see where they go. They could side with our heroes or, since they want to defend Reflected, side with Wraith. They really are 3rd party right now.

All in all, a plot packed episode. Characters got fleshed out, the story progressed and everyone has their own goals and are actively heading towards them. The only complaint I have continues to be the animation quality/frames. Its a shame that so many people will write this series off because of this issue.

At least we who watch it to the end will have something they wont. Japanese pop-idol magical girls, which got hinted at through the entire episode. My body is ready Stan Lee, don’t disappoint.

Posted on 8 August 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, The Reflection

Another week and The Reflection continue to improve. This week we get introduced to another character, more information on the Reflection and more stylish action. Lets dive in!

We open up right where we left off last episode, with Elen investigating the mysterious individual known as ‘Wraith’. During her search, she finds something and X-On appears over her shoulder! Curious how he got there. Has it been a day? Same night? Didnt he leave last episode or did she call him there? Confusing to say the least, and the silence as Elen clicks on the computer makes the scene rather akward in places. We soon hop into the OP on the image of a cloaked figure on a security camera. No doubt this is the enigmatic Wraith, the villain of our series?

Once the OP wraps up, we head back into Elen’s apartment. Presumably this is after X-On has left, after a few days have passed so she could research. Being oblivious to her environment, Elen fails to notice her entire apartment is on fire until she touches a hot soda can. I’m no expert, but I don’t believe fires work like that. Oddly, X-On is outside when this occurs. Either this is the same night as episodes 1 and 2, or he’s psychic. Considering they talk about Dayton, I believe this is all the same day and The Reflection is simply failing at conveying what is actually going on. After a brief argument, X-On agrees to take young Elen with him to Dayton in search of Wraith, if only because she has a car.

Before heading to Dayton, there is a brief interlude as our Japanese Idol group is getting interviewed. For some reason, these scenes are actually some of the most interesting. The still speaking scenes work well with The Reflections art and the voice acting sounds very natural. With them being a thousand miles away, I am legitimately curious how this idol group will become relevant to the story. They arn’t the only ones getting interviewed though.

We next cut to Lisa, the character the episode is named for, being interviewed just like the idol group. Makes me believe there is a connection, if only between the purpose of the interviews, but its a nice cut. Lisa says little here before we cut to X-On and Elen in the car, but only a few minutes of exposition laden banter later, our heroes collide! Quite literally in this case, as Elen almost hits the wheel-chair bound Lisa with her car. We learn a lot in these scenes, even if its thrown at us unabashedly.

We learn that the Reflection, the even that dolled out super powers and killed people, came in 2 forms. Green light and black smoke. Green light changed people internally, giving people like X-On and Elen their powers. The black smoke however changed people externally, resulting in people like the Lizard-man and the Water Skeleton. Apparently this smoke also effected their minds, causing them to become violent, making those hit by the smoke the obvious bad guys for our story. Simple but its good to get some more explanation of the even, fleshing it out as the season goes along.

Going back to Lisa, I have to call out Stan Lee. This is pretty lazy. Lisa is almost a carbon copy of Barbara Gordon from the Batman comics. A woman, trapped in a wheel chair, with an obsession on superheroes. Her father is even a cop, just like Commissioner Gordon from Batman! Similarities aside, Lisa is taking her condition better than Barbara Gordon. She competes in sports events and refuses to let her father coddle her. Its good to have a strong disabled character, who get little representation in anime. Lisa and her father wrap up their scene and we jump back over to X-On, who tracked someone to a junkyard. Surprise, its female Magneto! Another surprise, X-On isn’t stupid, has he points out a junkyard isn’t the best place to fight someone who can control metal. A rather dull fight, but an improvement in frame count once again.

What hasn’t improved though is the music, or in this case the lack there of. Aside from ‘Sky Show’, the best song of this season, there has been next to no background music. Nothing exists to augment the scenes. Lisa and her fathers kidnapping hits very weakly because of this, as there is no buildup. It just… happens. At least the kidnapping itself is interesting though, as the villains also bring out a new character. Apparently Lisa is a Reflected! Not surprising, but the villains strategy to use her powers is. They want to force her, through trauma, to awaken her powers and no doubt attempt to recruit her. Not a well thought out plan, but points for trying. As it is, the whole event seems almost comically designed to force Lisa and X-On/Elen into a team.

Once our heroes arrive on the scene, a quick fight breaks out and before I go any further there is one thing I want to talk about. You see the picture above this paragraph? That’s Putrid, a new villain. The man splits in to and turns into a crushing machine. That was the most unexpected thing to occur all season for me, and shockingly enough the art style and CGI make it work. Its still comic book levels of stupid, but visually it works. However he isn’t the only person with a power suited to the art style, as Lisa crawls to her chair and transforms into a giant robot! You read that right folks, The Reflection is actually a mecha anime. Jokes aside, it doesn’t look to bad. In most other styles such obvious CG would look out of place. With this rotoscoped style however, it only looks a little out of place. Some really fluid metal animations and a quick fight later, our heroes peace on out. We close on them flying into the horizon.

All in all a dull, but necessary episode. It setups up the larger story, introduces some more characters and explains some more about the world. The fight at the end had a noticeable up-tick in animation quality as well, which is a good sign. With any luck, our main cast will be introduced and we can leap into our first major arc soon.

Until then, this was Lenlo with Star Crossed anime news. See ya next week!

Posted on 1 August 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, The Reflection

The Reflection returns, with more frames, some much needed exposition and lovable characters!

It starts 3 years ago, as the Reflection flashes across the globe. Green rain(?) falls from the sky, people all across the world fall unconscious or die to this event. Those that survive, gain powers never seen before! Both the music and the art style do alot to set the mood here, the comic-like art standing out. The animation is still weightless in certain places though, as the falling people all look like dead weight. There’s no momentum behind anything. At lease we get some backstory before hopping back to the present, or near to it at least.

Our story picks up immediately before the events of the first episode, with the assumed President of the United States (Did the flags give it away) giving a speech about the Reflection. He is rudely interrupted by the fiery woman from last episode, who takes the stage to bring attention to her people. Those being the Reflected, those who survived the event 3 years ago. While I am concerned how she got that close to a public figure so easily, I love her animation. The style of the series, when animated properly, really is striking. As her speech progresses, no one moves to stop her, but we do see I-Guy fly through the sky. While there are still a lot of still frames, they added more to the scenes that required it which is all it needed. Praise be to Stan Lee!

Speaking of Lee, I was expecting him to show up in the series, but not as a villain. Using his psychic powers I assume, he coordinates the team of villains. Their plan it seems was to set a trap for X-On, to get him out in the open. To bad they didnt plan on I-Guy. For the next while we get alot of reused scenes and some new ones, all with X-Ons inner monologue. The animation on his fight with Mr.Kung Fu was nice, it had more impact than most shots. After a quick recap we pickup where we left off in episode one, in the Stalker Girls apartment.

We get a lot of X-On in this scene, which is good. His personality is like if Spiderman had more of an attitude. I quite like him. He gives us some information on another character, Wraith, who I feel we will meet soon. Next we get some time alone with I-Guy, another charming personality. They guy is quality, like Tony Start without the demeaning attitude. The singing, the costume, the song, LA, everything about him screams performer and he clearly loves a good show. As seen by his time on the plane, the guys a goofball. He got so nervous from his first fight he puked! As with X-On we are treated to some repeat scenes with his voice over, lazy but they do seem to have more frames this time.

After that, we meet some of his team. Apparently they are all showboats, just like I-Guy. The best part of this sequence though is that we learn all of those effects with the screens actually occurred! It was a legitimate show! Nice touch, I really like these people. Sadly we get yet another flashback, its only purpose to show us what I-Guy was doing during the Reflection. The scene could have been shorter and gotten the same information across. After that, more scenes of I-Guy, this time stopping a robbery. Multi-Armed guy is a bit, crazy, but we get to see more and more who I-Guy is.

Finally, we end on a clip of the group of girls we opened episode one with. The idol group that does the ED most likely, who apparently have a bigger part to play. No doubt they were also hit by the Reflection and have decided to create a pop idol super hero group! Could work. Could crash horribly. Not much happened this episode sadly, but we saw the improvement we wanted and got the exposition we needed. One thing is for certain though, I will be sorely disappointed if I don’t get a new I-Guy logo picture each episode.

See ya next week! Excelsior!

CHANGE USERNAME
Kaiser-Eoghan
And that extends to action scenes, don't just slap old songs over your trailer thoughtlessly/carelessly or dump a generic pop song over your mecha battle or generic rock song over a fight scene.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Scenes would be better served by subtely or sinister sound design or less/no music in most cases.
Amagi
@Niello: Same here. It annoyed me to no end. I was curious so I watched the live stream. It was much better/less bad with subs, most of the first episode was nothing but shousa shousa and casually a "violetto chan..".
AidanAK47
@Amagi, I would disagree on music. The soundtrack is far too bombastic and overbearing for the nature of the series.
Niello
Watching the first episode raw was a mistake imo. I actually cringed when I heard chuusa for the 10th time in the hospital room scene. At least the subtitle would serve as a distraction.
Amagi
It's kinda sad because the execution of scenes, music and animation are awesome and I think that its depiction of characters and their behaviour is pretty good too, the problem is that the MC is a bad/illogical character to begin with and that they want to attract a larger fanbase through certain pandering. Still enjoy it overall, though.
SuperMario
We share the exact same thoughts about Violet's issues then. I think the story isn't that great and the characterisation so far is weak. But count on me to blog it to see if it can improve itself
Amagi
Yeah, the idea of some unworldy girl learning about emotions through ghost writing is great and I love the setting. But the war part makes no sense in that context, and I wish they'd tone down that "I'm mayor's dog" stuff. It's pretty common for these type of people being clingy to one specific person, but they should totally leave out the waifu pandering. Ep 2 was better in that regard though.
Niello
How come Violet went through war and back and still doesn't even recognise, in the slightest, the grim emotions humans sometimes feel such as pain, worry, distrust, anger, hate etc. Then the premise set up that she's going to learn love and all the other emotions, good and bad, though ghost writing and empathise with people. I call bull.
Niello
@Mario: The writing is disappointing and underwhelming, especially the characterisation. I would rant, but I'd rather not. It's just, if this show doesn't have the amazing visual or Kyoani name attached you can just imagine that its fate would be rather bleak.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: hhhmmm, I have good news, the French dvd of that film let the corpses tan is coming out in March, well before the vod release, so it'll probably get fansubbed or something before we have to wait for an official English web-dl/cast.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Was never much of an on stage/presentation man really, I was always rubbish at it, to quiet an introverted person really to get up in front of a crowd and give a lecture/speech.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: And this would be the part where I say it would be great if I even had half your presentation ability or sounded that clever.
Your voice is as imagined it, though I'd pictured you younger looking in my head.
KTravlos
fianlly done with the academic meeting I was organizing. Should get back to some anime watching. Also if you want to see my presentation go here

https://youtu.be/GNjtuf-nJ-s?list=PL7qM1ZYRwV_DbcW31vF_Codobpq7u6ffS
SuperMario
@Niello: Aside from your #1 (which ưe'll agree to disagree here), it's a nice set of shows you're follwing this season. Did you watch Violet Evergarden first episode thou and how did you think about it?
SuperMario
Great. Now I can't even send message here through my laptop.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: i think it's the same issue with kisscartoon. The original site was shut down sometimes ago, and now there are plenty of Kisscartoon's fake domains that are annoying as hell
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: its back up now though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Its front page has server issues from time to time sometimes for hours.
SuperMario
I just read some manga on kissmanga a week ago, is the site down already?
Niello
Well to be fair batoto is down because of the site owner personal reason.
Kaiser-Eoghan
So Mangahere, mangachapter, baoto, animea seem to be gone and kissmangas front page is down , mangafox is slow, whats next to go down....
Niello
I don't currently see an anime this season that really stands out from the others. Right now if I have to rank them
1) Miira no kaikata
2) Kokkoku
3) Sora yori mo tooi basho
4) Koi wa ameagari no you ni
5) Takagi-san.
Not counting Devilman Crybaby since it's already finished.
Niello
@Eoghan I love Urobuchi and still find the Godzilla film weak.
SuperMario
I just looked through the nominations for the Crunchyroll Anime Awards and to my surprise, it's a pretty solid lineups. Find myself agreeing with most of their choices there
AidanAK47
Actually forgot about it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I don't know why you don't just read kara no shoujo 2 instead.
AidanAK47
And Himawari is actually boring me. It's proving difficult to push myself though just to see where the point that makes it highly regarded comes in.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: In the end I was pretty much curious about it.
AidanAK47
Yep, that's it. Gonna stop discord displaying what I play from now on. It's weird when people comment on it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Now my current rankings: 1. Devilman
2.Junji itou
3. sangatsu
4. Cardcaptor sakura
5. Pop team
6. Evergarden.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*Aidan
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm joking obviously, but I am surprised to see you playing Himawari Aiden.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Oh Aidan you and your lolicon visual novel you =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Alonaria: Shin Godzilla had the evolving godzilla thing and that freaky ass final shot too, it also justified itself quite well i think by showing how relevent he is today, given the nuclear thing and that it drew on the Fukushima incident essentially.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Alonaria: Thats a far better and shorter way of putting it than I.
Alonaria
I wish I'd just waited for the other parts of the Godzilla movie trilogy to be released. As it is, I'm just going to remember it as "that incomplete movie." And the character designs kind of blurred together for me, which was really disorienting.
Anonymous1746949
Oh psgels is back
Kaiser-Eoghan
But I've seen other Godzilla things so I pretty much was supposed to see this anyway.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or you know you could always take what I said with a pinch of salt, because you know....I don't get on with Urobutcher.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The idea behind it is definately cool and a different spin for the franchise though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Maybe I was held back a bit by the cgi or the mediorce voice acting.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But I'd need to see its followup before properly assessing it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Godzilla often makes for silly films, but lke alot of silly older films the silliness and seriousness combine without clashing, this one is too Poe faced .
Kaiser-Eoghan
I saw that Godzilla anime film, I'd describe it as watchable in parts but far too caught up in setup mode and an unlikeable protaganist , it could go somewhere with what it raised at the start but this is an example of a first film in a trilogy that suffers from being unable to currently stand on its own.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I generally feel that Itou's stories have a winning track record but theres exceptions, Uzumaki and Gyo in manga form struggle toward the end and the first episode story the anime chose to adapt is, while fun one of the weaker offerings.
Alonaria
Honestly, the shorter stories have been more effective at getting a reaction out of me, though. I actually didn't really enjoy the first episode's first story, mostly because I found the MC too obnoxious. :.D Maybe because my younger brother chased me with a bug once and it was really unpleasant. XD
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: It wasn't just it coming out of her mouth, but when they were stamping on them too.
Anonymous1743747
@Kaiser: Yah, I was horrified for like 5 seconds but the other characters made me crack up. :.D
Kaiser-Eoghan
Although it was mixed in with laughing my ass of eventually.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Of all the Itou stories to be un-nerved by, its the second half of this third episode oddly that does it for me and I never get uncomfortable during anything .
AidanAK47
@Anon, We are working on it.
Anonymous1742736
Are you planning on making a top anime of 2017 list?
Amagi
Yeah Mash is one of the few good ones it seems.
Amagi
Oh damn, good that you remind me, I didn't pick anything yet. But I guess I will go with Altera, considering that some of them don't look that good and I own her anyway. Would have wanted the Scat one but the drawing looks weird.
AidanAK47
Which Bond CE did you pick for the 2 mill? I went with the Mash one. Only only whose artwork I liked.
AidanAK47
Might settle for making Bryn my endgame lancer though.
AidanAK47
As I said in my Apocrypha post, I have no interest in any version of Jeanne. My top priorities for my endgame team is Isekander, Scathach and assassin Shiki. And Shiki is a welfare so only need to worry about the other two.
Amagi
Yeah, I was considering to keep rolling for the new 4* at first but I really want Jeanne Alter and she's coming soon.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, I tried rolling for Karna and got nothing. Though I think Bryn is better. I plan on rolling one more time with the saint quartz we are getting to try for NP2. Though we do have the valintines event coming.
Amagi
@Aidan: Same here, just got Brynhildr. Even though I already got Karna last month. But I wanted her, nice design, finally a single-targed 5* and she's even one of the few servants related to my country.
KTravlos
@SuperMario. The contemplation of the death of humanity, and the loneliness, both were very disturbing to me. Kinda like thinking of my grave.
AidanAK47
YANDERE GET. Bryn's mine baby.
AidanAK47
Gonna try rolling for Brynhildr tomorrow. Bit annoyed they chose to translate it as Brynhild. I mean it's not incorrect but her name is far more recognisable as Brynhildr
AidanAK47
@Amagi, The grind wasn't that bad for me. Mordred carried me for it. Though I managed to get Siegfried in the gacha despite not being on rate up. I admit that the event was rather lackluster. Story wasn't that fun and the whole saber restriction was a pain. Also gonna take me a while to readjust to regular damage.
Amagi
Man that FGO Saber Wars event was annoying. I am happy finally I have 2 mio. altrium now and am done with it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Reminder that netflix Godzilla anime is later today.
Amagi
Damn I didn't noticed that ankle band of the little demon from the intro scene of FranXX 01, now I feel stupid.
Lenlo
Yuasa is great! Ping pong and Tatami Galaxy are still some of my favorites
SuperMario
Oh fuck, the lead singer of the Cranberries passed away. I literally just listened to their music yesterday. Damnn, sad news
SuperMario
@Kaiser; thanks for considering me but I believe Wooper is much more a Yuasa's fan than I am
SuperMario
Far out!!!
SuperWooper
Yuasa will be answering questions on Reddit's anime board on the 20th.
SuperMario
@Niello: what do you mean regarding Yuasa?
SuperMario
@Travlos: I agree that Girls Last Tour is a special little gem, but in what ways it's disturbing?
Niello
Holy cow, Masaaki Yuasa AMA!! What magic is this?
Niello
Meawhile, Japan took a different approach and we ends up with a bunch of .hack rehash and diving more and more into escapism. Until we eventually got isekai and then it just spiraled into a sea of mediocrity.
Niello
While that opened its own can of worms, at least it opens up element about making ends meet, managing irl relationships, earning extra income for a poor family, getting cheated etc.
Niello
in the characters real life just fine. Something more a long the line of Net-juu but more technologically advanced. And I would say that plenty of those have been superior to Japanese online game and isekai story shenanigans. That said, it doesn't mean that those don't have their own kind of traps they usually fall in. A bunch of those instead focus on the aspect of making money off of games.
Niello
...Getting stuck in a virtual reality game and being transport to another world that happens to be like a game are completely different though. I don't know what is it with Japan and getting stuck in game plots considering that there are loads of other game-base Asian novels that came before it that manage story lines where they manage to tell compelling stories in game while balancing what happen
KTravlos
I finally finished Girls Last Tour. What a profound, fluffy and disturbing masterpiece. Bravo.
Amagi
Yeah. I feel the world swap is pretty much pointless when real life isn't relevant anymore. It's just a stupid as hell excuse to combine fantasy wish fullfilment with self-inserts, which is why these main characters tend to be 29 by now, just like the big part of the otaku community.
Lenlo
Of those you listed, no, I dont think they get explained? I mean, SAO did, but I dont think that falls into your category.

Thats why I liked .hack//sign over alot of more modern game Isekai. Also .hack//sign did explain what happened to Tsukasa.
Amagi
Considering how bad most of these are I wouldn't wonder if they wouldn't even bother with an explanation and just end it with the characters being happy in that game world and that's it. Or magic and the whole harem gets transported into reality at the end because power of love and such.
Amagi
I have no problem with a sci-fi fantasy mix, I liked .hack//sign for example, but it annoys me that such an incredibly bizarre situation gets never explained. Or maybe it will but it never happened so far because none of these LNs was ever finished and concluded yet. I just wish to know how they explain that.
Amagi
I mean all those shows in which the character just finds himself stuck in a real world that's (coincidentally?) the same as the game he recently played. Be it Overlord, Death March, Log Horizon or the 300 other series with that premise.
Amagi
Some thing that always bothered me about game isekai for which I never got an answer so far: did any of those series ever end and/or explain how the warp has happened and why the MC is in the game? - Not talking about .hack, SAO and such where the action of getting trapped is part of the premise
Niel
@Eoghan - Btw, Kokkoku isn't a time travel. it's stasis, apparently. Looks very promising so far. Though if I am to trust the manga score, it's shit.
Niel
But is Toradora really slice of life? As far as I can see it's straight up romance.
Lenlo
And Mario, ill rag on SOL all I want! :P

Wooper, its true good shows transcend genre, as there are still some like Toradora I like, but those are exceptions that prove the rule so to speak.
Lenlo
@Niel, yeah I base my potential % on the odds something gets/stays good.
AidanAK47
I am of similar mindset about Franxx. I want it to get better but I don't really see it doing so. Unless the other characters get a majority personality boost or the MC stops being a plank.
Niel
XD
Kaiser-Eoghan
I confess....I only sat through just over half an episode of aldonoah.
Niel
Since it's Trigger, I will give the benefit of the doubt. I'm just very skeptical about this whole formula.
Niel
The way I can see this series improving is through world building. And if other aspects are going to improve too, it's going to revolve around that.
Niel
It leaves about as much impression on me as much as the first episode of Aldnoah did, and I dropped that one straight away. The character chemistry doesn't look like it will go places that's not cliche. The gimmick doesn't seem like it has much potential either.
Niel
So you're all betting it on "this is going to get better". I mean, I hope it gets better. Though right now this feels more Kiznaiver than Kill la Kill or LWA.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd nominate Mario to do the devilman review as he's the most immediate Yuasa fan to do it and Bam is too awol to write it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The cute girl shows just bleed and blend in my mind now, same with the isekai shows.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Devilman, my show of the season, unless after the rain ends up having some emotional wallop.
Kaiser-Eoghan
So for me its looking like: Junji itou, Cardcaptor sakura, keeping up with sangatsu, wait and see on amegari . Not watching a time travel or trigger show and I remain unable to sit through Mahoutsukai .
Amagi
The story itself is generic so far but so are most Trigger series at the beginning so not sure. Maybe it will stay weak, but in general I prefer series that start with the weaker episodes and get better and better over time over the many series that use up all of their budget and trump cards in the first episode and drag on after that.
Amagi
I really love Trigger's esthetics and their characters. I am happy they're more often involved in non-trigger-only productions because I honestly think that most of the stuff I enjoyed about FranXX was heavily influenced by them.
SuperMario
@Nielo: Franxx's first ep was stellar for me. Storywise, it's lackluster (and I see the similar in tropes between this and Beatless) but production-wise it's excellent
SuperMario
I think I just keep watching it on a weekly basis. Still trippy as hell
SuperMario
Okay, I just watched second episode of Devilman Crybaby and it's still pretty good.
Nielo
By the way, what's up with Darling in the Franxx? I thought it's a very weak first episode.
Nielo
@Lenlo: Slice of life isn't my thing either, and I usually avoid series set in high school.
Nielo
@SuperMario: Takagi-san is cute, I'll admit that, but since I already read the manga it's not new to me. Sora Yori is good, but it's not particularly cute. I found Hakumei to Mikochi and Yuru Camp very boring. Haven't got the chance to watch Mitsuboshi Colors or Gakuen Babysisters but I don't think they could be more cute than Mii-kun.
SuperWooper
HOT TAKE: Genre is irrelevant. What matters is whether a show is good.
SuperMario
Don't knock off MY genre Lenlo. It's one of the reason I got into anime in the first place :)
Lenlo
Im not saying it doesn't do what it sets out to. I just don't think what it sets out to do is all that... great.
Lenlo
@Niello, Slice of Life was never my Genre in the first place :/ I typically avoid them. I have my own life to deal with and already graduated high school, why would I want to deal with a melodramatic anime highschool, is my line of thought.
SuperMario
@Niello: okay, let's see:Takagi-san (the titular character), Mitsuboshi Colors, Gakuen Babysisters (Toddlers!!), Hakumei to Milochi (tiny girls) and two more slightly more mature but equally cute: Sora Yori and Yuru Camp's casts
Nielllo
@SuperMario: I'm sure this is where our definition of "cute" parts way, but I'll ask anyway, what are those 5 shows?
SuperMario
@Niello: seems so because I can eaisily pick 5 more shows that are cuter, and better than Mummy this season ;)
Nielllo
...So I suppose I'm the only one who's kinda bored out by a lot of the slice of life shows that's trying to be cute this season and only perked up by the Mummy anime because it's actually do what it's meant to do and be legit cute.
Lenlo
I am interested in Koi, but still have concern about the relationship itself.

@Vonter, the mummy anime would be better as short vignettes together I feel.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Koi amegari is surprisingly tasteful, subdued and pretty.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*to where
Kaiser-Eoghan
Try as I might, my love of kyoani tv anime has largely evaporated did where I no longer want to bother at this stage, I'll just wait and see. I'll just stay quiet on the franxx anime, theres little value in me trying to get through a trigger work at this point.
SuperMario
I get the exact same feeling with Takagi-san. It's pretty good on what it does but 20 minutes of the same thing for a whole season doesn't sound that promising
Vonter
The chibi mummy anime
Vonter
It's a shame it isn't a shorter 10 or 5 minute series, I think that format would make it shine more, since it does what it's trying to do.
Amagi
Speaking of it, I liked the second episode of Kokkuko or whatever the name is even more than the first one.
Amagi
I really have a problem with all these shows that rely on one single thing, joke, shenanigan or whatever. Be it something cute, some certain kind of interactiong or whatever. It doesn't matter how good it is it will bore me with episode 2.
Lenlo
Like, yeah, the mummy was cute. But the cute became rote/bland really quick. There has to be more than "cute" to be worth watching for more than a single episode to me.
Lenlo
@Niello, I was harsh because its not aimed at me. I wanted to drop it 5 minutes in, kept up for the post, then was thankful it was over. There wasnt anything overtly bad about it. Its just there was nothing good either.
AidanAK47
To be fair it's not as if we are lacking cute in this season.
In fact it's in danger of inflation.
SuperMario
@Niello: yes, the mummy is cute, the show is cute but beside that it's pretty mediocre. That show in particular is the only show that I have the damnest time to give it a potential rating.
Niello
It's not even down because of legal reasons, since the site pull down contents that are lincensed. It's down cause it's too much for the site owner to manage. Much of it also have to do with too many bots, which comes back to how a lot of other sites are relying on batoto.
Niello
@Masky: Not enough manga titles are getting translated. Batoto is the site scanlation groups basically rely on, and where other aggregation sites pull their content from. No batoto no obscure titles, a big blow to small scantation groups and one big manga/scanlator community down.
Niello
Why are you guys so harsh on the mummy show? It's so darn cute. Give it some credit. If a comedy show can be good because it does comedy well I don't see why a show ike Mummy can't be good if it can make people go "aww".
Masky
I don't really know why that is the case, maybe marketing budget and UI friendliness when done right? :P
Masky
Eh, wouldn't say it will kill manga industry. I mean, more and more official methods of reading manga online is starting to pop up and legit channels to pay to get access to manga can surprisingly enough harm free channels to get manga.
Masky
Anyway, I do find it funny how how the isekai character dies can be so meaningless that is joke in most of them
Niello
Batoto is going down, how this affect the manga reading is going to be interesting. Hope it's not slowly dying.
Masky
(at least that one, besides forgetting to introduce what the heck is gimmick besides generickness, acknowledged how most of otaku mcs shouldn't erally want to get transferred to fantasy world since they never get to see how their favourite mangas end :P )
Masky
Anyhoo, it gets annoying since its not just isekai being cliche, sometimes is just them being kind of badly written(or at least adapted to manga). Like, I found one new isekai today, but I have no idea what its gimmick is(from what I understood, its that "cute companion" that character gets is hideously op because mc didn't spefy cute girl when he asked god manager dude for cute companion)
Masky
Slime one is one of better from the more generic ones weirdly enough :P I mean I still wouldn't call it good, but at least MC character isn't god tier, just top tier and it has sort of village building simulation feel to it. Plus at least naming things giving monsters more powers is something funny regarding jrpg mechanics
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or alternatively the car was on a boat with the character or parents in it and the boat and car were hit by a falling plane lol
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its always "car accident" that sends the characters to another world or in harem cases "Lost parents due to car crash", for christs sake doesn't anyone die in out of control plane or speedboat crashes anymore, at least make it a motorbike....
Nayrael
Ah sorry, should probably not have touched the colors...
Nayrael
Trust me, Isekai is better when it doesn't try to be imaginative. When it tries to be original then... Isekai with a Smartphone... Isekai where the MC turns into a Slime... and my favorite: Isekai where the MC became a Hot Spring popular with sexy girls.
Masky
Assuming "new" things can happen under the sun
Masky
Anyhoo, I do wonder what the heck will be next "popular genre trope that will become so overused cliche that everyone groans whenever show uses it even if its actually good show"
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Featured Posts

Darling in the Franxx – 02[What it means to connect]

As it stands now, this is essentially an animated version of a double entendre. Each line is laced with a double meaning so heavy that you can postface lines with the words “That’s what she said.” and it would fit perfectly. I find my stance on this to be rather mixed as while the fanservice […]

Junji Ito Collection – 03[The Crossroads Pretty boy – The lovesick dead, Slug Girl]

Our two stories today regard the handsome man at the crossroads and slug girl. The handsome man story was given the most screen time and it is a decent story, albeit unfinished. What was presented here was only the first part of the story and I believe it will be continued in later episodes. But […]

Mahoutsukai no Yome – 15 [There is no place like home]

Welcome to another week of Mahoutsukai no Yome. This week continues Chise’s bad relationship with water, Elias’s with Fae and gives Silky a history. Lets jump in! To start off, I want to talk about the best part of this episode, that being Silky’s history and alone time. For the longest time Silky was a […]

After the Rain – 02 [Rain Drops on Green Leaves]

It has been exactly a year since I last blogged you, noitaminA shows, and this time again it’s another romance drama. Unlike Scum’s Wish last year, however, Ameagari has one simple premise, but it executes the idea with such grace. This second episode is even stronger than the first, setting the stepping stone for Tachibana […]

Violet Evergarden – 02 [Never Coming Back]

I’m thankful that this second episode plays out much quieter and more subtle than the first, because I’m not a fan at all with the grandeur approach of the first episode. This makes the second week of Violet slightly better than last week, but I still find myself not totally satisfied with the whole experience. […]

Kokkoku – 2 [The Second Moment]

Hello and welcome to the 2018 Winter season! This time, we have an interesting little time-based drama called Kokkoku. It has mystery, it has cults, it has dead-beat parents and apparent god-like beings. Lets jump in! To start, a quick blurb about our characters. Personally, I like them so far. They are all flawed and imperfect […]

A Place Further than the Universe – 03 [The Follow Backs Don’t Stop]

“I could just die right now” That line, spoken by our new member, Yuzuki, bookends this week’s Universe. It marks the shift in the new girl’s character growth. Last week, the Expedition girls mentioned they have a plan to raise fund, right? Turns out it’s not the mother, but the young girl herself, is used […]

Junji Ito Collection – 02[Fashion Model, Long Dreams]

After the first episode started off as a black comedy, I was worried that this series may suffer the same problem as Kino’s Journey in that the weaker stories in his work would be chosen for adaption. Lucky this does not appear to be the case but there is another problem which is not quite […]

Mahoutsukai no Yome – 13/14 [East, West, Homes Best]/[Looks breed love]

Hello and welcome to the new year! New Year, a new Cour for Mahoutsukai no Yome, this time with slightly more plot. These past two weeks have been a bumpy ride of Mahoutsukai, with plenty to talk about. So let’s jump in! To start off, the new OP is terrible. The music isn’t as good […]

Latest Reviews

In This Corner of the World (2016) Movie Review – 90/100

In this Corner of the World (for the purpose of this review, I’ll refer it as “Corner”), is the truest slice of life drama if you ever encounter one, in that it’s a slice into an ordinary life of an ordinary girl during the War period. That speaks into the very first strength of Corner, […]

Houseki no Kuni (Fall 2017) Review – 92/100

Make no mistake, Houseki no Kuni is the most ambitious anime project of the year. Not only because it’s an entirely CG project (and make a damn good use of it, mind you), or because of its narrative scope that at once strange, grand and beauty, but also in its very conception in their production […]

Fate/Apocrypha Anime Review – 64/100

I was quite excited for Apocrypha and in the so called year of Fate adaptations, it looked to be the crown jewel. Sadly, partly due to lacking adaption and the source lacking in areas, this anime turned out to be not quite the jewel I thought it would be. It’s hard to call this a […]

Kino’s Journey -The Beautiful World Anime Review – 73/100

One of the surprises of the year was to see the return of Kino’s Journey, a very well regarded and more unique anime among those deemed classic. Many, myself included, were very much looking forward to the return of Kino and her talking Motorrad. Though due to some factors this series doesn’t quite live up […]

Girls’ Last Tour (Fall 2017) Review – 86/100

Girls’ Last Tour falls within my favorite new trend that emerging the anime medium over the last decade: a dark moe anime. Set in a post-apocalyptic world where the human race has almost extinct, our two girls wandering around the world in their kettenkrad looking for food and shelter. If it sounds a bit bleak […]

Two tales of War: Reviewing The Heroic Legend of Arslan and Altair: A Record of Battles

It would not be an exaggeration to say that my favorite type of anime is the political-military epic. This comes partly out of my profession, I study war and politics, but also my hobby, as military and political history is something I enjoy. When it comes to anime there is a clear sub-category that can […]

The Night is Short, Walk On Girl (2017) Movie Review – 92.5/100

“How many decades have passed since our drinking contest?” “It hasn’t been that long. It was only a few hours ago, this very night!” That gap in time perceiving plays a significant role in Night is Short. For you see, it all depends on how our perception of the surroundings and time itself can affect […]

Ballroom e Youkoso Review – 65/100

In the weeks leading up to the summer 2017 season, Ballroom e Youkoso was one of the most buzzed-about new series. Produced by the Production I.G. team responsible for the smash hit Haikyuu!!, and set to air on Amazon’s brand new Anime Strike service, the series had no shortage of promotion or hype behind it. […]

Inuyashiki Review – 80/100

Do you know what the average age of an anime protagonist is? Neither do I, but I’d wager its in the upper teens. For obvious reasons, most anime focus on high school and have high school aged protagonists with similarly aged problems. Its not often that we get a good older main character, who has […]