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.

(more…)

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
SuperMario
@Animosh: don't mention it. I'm glad you enjoy it. I don't take credits in this case since I myself haven't watched it yet. I love it how this community is willing to try other medium and not exclusively anime
Animosh
Really surprised this isn't more well known. Not that there's been much competition, but it's easily the best (western) cartoon I've seen this year.
Animosh
@SuperMario: thanks again for recommending Lastman! I just finished it, and it was a lot of fun. It doesn't have much depth, but it was incredibly entertaining: it just keeps throwing these bizarrely over the top action set-pieces at you without pausing, it oozes style, and its soundtrack is killer (it reminded me a bit of Hotline Miami). And it can be pretty damn funny too. It even ends strongly.
SuperMario
"I swear if I see some nonsense like her not being able to stay “Professional” due to having a boyfriend then I will have to strangle something" --> is that why you had screenshot of kitties up there?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: little sister has a strong chance to be a protag in the last arc. I'm genuinely surprised that Futaba is the main girl in this arc thou
Kaiser-Eoghan
I want to see the little sister looking scared in bunnygirl agrain.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Yay! Sing and eiji are doing something and Ash's freakout while melodramtic and ridiculous was still bleak, learn a bit more about Blanca which is good. Didn't like the goofy bit with yut-lung.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Not intellectually non-intellectual enough for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Bunny-girl has redeemed itself. Also my favourite part of this weeks episode was 7 or 8 minutes before the end .
SuperMario
I mean, just reading that title alone I might check out what this movie is about. lol
SuperMario
Well, I come across an unusual film title today. A Japanese film called "When I Get Home, My Wife Always Pretends to be Dead"
Kaiser-Eoghan
The Lafalle arc (as thematically I probably engaged the most here)and the final arc both elevated this series for me, even though I did enjoy the bit with Vann early on.
I’ve heard people don’t like the ending it hit with me.
Really solid.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Dramatically this even kind of clicked for me and the antagonist surprised me as did twintails girl and bestghosts eventual roles, comedy isn’t exactly funny but I did laugh at points.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Apparently I got third time lucky with Mizukami, because I found this a very fresh take on the re-incarnation genre while actually DOING something worthwhile with it, his pacing/story telling style definitely feels a better fit to me in a short manga like this.
Kaiser-Eoghan
After a degree of indifference to planet with and only liking Biscuit hammers last arc, I ended up approaching Spirit circle expecting to not really have any opinion on it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Just my kind of weird.
Anonymous3093267
sword eyes
SuperMario
Here's another experimental animated short for you, Kaiser, Tango (1981) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lo8O8lYDzIU
SuperMario
@Animosh: yeah the second part was released in VOD earlier this year and I watched it. Prefer the 1st one much better
Vonter
I don't know why, but I thought you were talking about Tomorrowland. That Disney movie that bombed and everyone seemed very lukewarm about. I suppose because I don't know exactly what was the problem with it, didn't see much discussion about it.
Animosh
@SuperMario: I think I've seen World of Tomorrow, but not 100% sure. There's apparently a second part out though, and I definitely haven't seen that!
Animosh
And Umfeld (https://vimeo.com/umfeld) is also worth mentioning. It kind of consists of shorts, it's technically animated (at least in part: it mixes real footage and CGI I think?), and it's definitely weird. It's a very polarizing work though. I love it, but it wouldn't surprise me if most people here hate it.
Animosh
Some other things that came to mind: Tim Burton's "Vincent" (it's stop-motion, but whatever), Loom (https://vimeo.com/24069938) and E-Baby (https://vimeo.com/25435555). And the stop-motion shorts by Lee Hardcastle are pretty fun, if you're in the mood for some needlessly disgusting horror.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I enjoyed embrace of the serpent which has the same director as Birds of passage so I'll keep an eye out for it.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I'm going to see Roma and Birds of Passage this weekend. Really excited for both
Kaiser-Eoghan
As for the she-ra thing well, as I've gotten older I probably have avoided kids stuff more.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I don't want to see tokenism being seen as acceptance when it isn't, it feels that people are putting forth the idea that something is only being/can be accepted because its being portrayed in a tokenistic way.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its fine, obviously to have strong female characters, Ripley in Alien, Sarah Conner in Terminator, awesome....Rey in star wars....no.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think too often shows and films, American ones today, are tokenistic or clicheed with inserting issues, merely just throwing them in or tacking them on for the sake of ticking boxes rather than any earnesty or doing anything.
Anonymous3086853
@SuperMario - I do. Yet at the same time it was a bit outside of my comfort zone, watching something like this considering that (let's be honest) msot shows are men oriented. Even the ones with great female characters. This one despite having tomboyish girls is mainly about these girls with male characters having supporting roles. I suppose that's were the uneasiness lies in my case.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Just got done watching both earlier, his dark humour jives well with me and I liked the concept.
SuperMario
@Kaiser @Animosh: if you haven't seen World of Tomorrow plsssss check it out. I can't recommend it highly enough
SuperMario
@Vonter: Maybe it's a good things that shows for general audiences like this have queer context. Don't you think?
Anonymous3086853
Also because I'm a bit immature, this show is kinda gay. There's a lot of ship baiting moments, one same sex couple in the last episode and rainbows, pastel colors, emasculated male characters and some female crossdressing.
Anonymous3086853
The weakest aspect is that several secondary characters get lost in the shuffle. Kinda like Big Hero 6 in which the team had personalities but just didn't had the time to develop in any meaningful way. Still both the main cast and villains were good and like I say the protagonist and antagonist had strong arcs for a first season.
Anonymous3086853
So I now finished watching She Ra, and it got even better as it was building towards the season's end. Thes strongest aspect is the rivalry between Adora and Catra, the chemistry is very strong, kinda like Optimus and Megatron or Xavier and Magneto. In which both parts seem equally capable and to have mind games with the other.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Oh hey cool, rain town is done by the Penguin hhighway anime movie guy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It looks like I haven't seen Don Hertzfedlts World of tomorrow films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also Prince Achmed and How Wang-Fo Was Saved.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah. yes, thanks animosh, I had a look at Rain town there, I like the style it was done in, it achieves the emotions its trying to convey well without needing dialogue, piano score actually helps rather than hinders.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Glassy ocean, that was another short I watched lately.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Oh inka isha is country doctor.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I know Mario has seen this style on animation, but anyone else see any oil on glass animation?
Kaiser-Eoghan
I actually prefer robot carnival to genius party but liked both.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Zepo, The Pride of Strathmoor were recent animated shorts I watched.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Recently I watched two shorts, death and the mother and pleasures of war.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd say any eastern european short films would be worth anyones time.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm not familiar with rain town or Inaka Isha .
Amagi
Kaiser: Have you seen Inaka Isha from Kafka?
Animosh
In the meanwhile, though, I'd also be very interested in recommendations! The shorts I mentioned are among my favorite animated works, so if you know anything similar, please let me know. :)
Animosh
For western animation I really like the Don Hertzfeldt shorts. And there was this short called "Rain Town" that was really impressively animated. I'm sure there were others, but my long-term memory is pretty lousy. If something else comes to mind I'll let you know.
Animosh
I'm pretty sure you're already going to be familiar with all of my favorites, but here you go: Morimoto's shorts are all fantastic (Dimension Bomb, Beyond, Noiseman Sound Insect, etc), and two others that come to mind are Cat Soup and Kigeki (or Comedy) by Nakazawa. There are also some great collections out there (like the Genius Party ones), but again, you've probably seen those already.
Kaiser-Eoghan
If anyone has any suggestions for weird short animations, I'm looking for excuses to watch some more and I'm in the mood for them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Masky: Mario's youtube link had cgi models of rem and ram in the video.
Masky
I'm confused when was Rem even mentioned
Kaiser-Eoghan
I only ever watched he-man and stuff related to it in passing when I was younger, Conan was more my thing back then.
Kaiser-Eoghan
For so long I'd always referred to she-ra as she-man.
AidanAK47
@Mario, What is this heresy!
....
....Rems always cute.
Anonymous3084910
Hilda is fine, though is very laidback kinda like a young reader's novel. It has its moments but its fantasy with slice-of-life coming of age.
Anonymous3084910
@SuperMario Yeah I know, She Ra is the twin sister of He Man. But strangely it seems Dreamworks may not have the right to those characters. It was a marketing idea trying to bring more girls to that universe but like most girls show from the time it had a very flat depiction of what little girls want to see.
SuperMario
Sorry Aidan, I know it's blasphemy but I have to post here. Enjoy the OP song with the twins https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v9MUjISNm0U&index=4&list=PLU56jBSlcHw8-ol9Hi4lJ0GR0tU6EOf2a
SuperMario
I'll probably check out Hilda. Heard a lot of hypes about that show
SuperMario
@Vonter: I've heard of She-Ra, she's the female counterpart (well, sister) of He-Man (the most powerful man in the universe and the secret identity of Prince Adam). Sounds silly but I'm not even kidding
Vonter
All in all, despite not being a big thing, I think is an enjoyable recommendation. My only nitpick is that it maybe too light hearted for some kinda like above My Little Pony but below something Voltron. Also despite being less childish than the original is still kinda of girly with lots of pastel colors although it balances it a bit having girls being more tomboyish in different degrees.
Vonter
Like with Voltron it amuses me seeing anime tropes being played through western lens. Since I'm a bit hesitant to say that could this count as a harem series despite not being male gaze moments? Also having the most sensible hotspring episode I've seen.
Vonter
In this one this She Ra has pathos. A bit like Korra there's doubt in her role and also a complicated relationship with her rival. I do like the role reversal in the knight's tale this clearly is, in that most roles that would be played by men are played by women in this story. Matriarchy, displacement of both femminine beauty but also empowerment.
Vonter
So I've watched some of the new She Ra from Netflix. So far I'm in, it's not deep but it's quite charismatic. I do like there's more pathos in regards to these characters which pretty much were confined to their archetype to an extreme like the original Power Rangers.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It manages to make watching something like running engaging, when I'd otherwise probably not watch the sport. Also, last week the show ended up popping into my head when I was sitting around doing pretty much nothing and made me think "Ok fuck it, not sitting around doing nothing, going to go out for a run around the block"
Lenlo
I also agree, characters losing in sports is important. They can't start at the top, it makes the series lose meaning
Lenlo
I quite enjoyed Kaze Fui this week. I think your correct that the one who got the reality check was Kurahara, who thought he was the only one able to actually make it. I also thing that he has a competitive streak a mile wide, and might be a little afraid of failure. Doesnt think the team can make it, so why bother
Kaiser-Eoghan
Think I wasn't i the mood for honda-san this week even though I laughed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I like it when sports series actually show the characters you know...actually lose.
Anonymous3083989
Huh, interesting in this episode of Kaze ga that it's Kakeru who got a reality check during the track meet since he was beaten by two other runners. I think we're due for an episode soon where he has to confront his past demons instead of fleeing from them.
Anonymous3083626
@Kaiser-Eoghan - Aging in fiction, I think has more to do with the story than the characters. I mean the jokes about Ash Ketchum, Detective Conan, Archie. The Flinstones tried to make different stories by aging Pebbles and Bam Bam. Or Batman having two Robins graduating into their own heroes. But in the end dynamics change, hence why most cartoons don't age the characters.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Which is why when aging does occur in anime/manga, such as in vinland saga or nanoha for example, its appreciated.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And of course, animated characters often don't age much.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can remember enjoying the simpsons movie back when I watched it, but thinking about it it really was just an extended episode. Really the show peaked with the who shot Mr Burns episode. Catching bits of recent episodes and seeing them use modern stuff while they never age seems weird too.
Amagi
I do think series are allowed to move forward though, I am kinda interested in the Pkmn movie for example. But certain shows should just end, Simpsons for example was a parody of the 90s, it just can't work in a more modern setting IMO.
Amagi
I stopped with the Simpsons when Maude was killed/died, it was just a step in the wrong direction they should have never done and it killed the series for me. I disliked it before already though, I think I noticed the series getting worse since season..9? Or 10, not sure anymore.
Amagi
Anime for Dorohedoro announced.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Therefore ruining the fanservice fun for everybody.
Kaiser-Eoghan
My favourite beach episodes are ones where it rains and they end up not being able to go.
Kaiser-Eoghan
After that it was just the film for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Actually, regarding the simpsons, the episode I stopped on was sometime in the early 2000s, Homer was stuck on some island resort or something.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I suppose it was just as much a case of falling out of watching/playing too and then there being so many episodes/games catchup was impossible. I probably should read the manga someday.
Anonymous3081957
@Kaiser-Eoghan -Kinda like Sponge Bob, Power Rangers or The Simpsons, I can't blame those who move forward, It's imposible for a show to go that long without losing steam. I did check the Sun and Moon first season and while I think the personality and energy is better it doesn't exactly push the concept forward. Still somehow Pokemon is still a phenomenon.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Very strange hearing a Pikachu talk with Ryan Reynolds voice. But my days of pokemon are behind me.
KyokoHyuga
?????
KyokoHyuga
who likes pokemon here
SuperMario
@Amagi: I think the person who made the sub for Maquia did a pretty neat job. Not perfect but the translation flows well
Vonter
We've seen realistic Pokémon fanart, but how does a movie looks when it attempts it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q8CKgQFo5U8
Amagi
How are the subs for Maquia? I only heard anons complain about it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*dealing with
Kaiser-Eoghan
Though you should really torrent it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There is 1080p stream on kiss anime, if you hate deal with the ads on that site the 4up stream on anilinkz has the best quality of the available links
Lenlo
Where did you see Maquia online? I still need to watch it. PM it to me on discord maybe? Pretty please? <3
SuperMario
One fact that not many people know is that Penguin Highway is penned by Tomihiko Morimi. It indeed has many Morimi's signature inputs
SuperMario
This year, I'm doing well with catching up anime films (kudos for Australian's Madman who always license these titles very quickly). So far, I've watched Mirai, Maquia, Penguin Highway, Let Me Eat Your Pancreas and My Hero Academia the Movie
SuperMario
So I watched two anime movies this last week, Penguin Highway in theatre and Maquia online. Both of them are pretty solid in general, especially Penguin that has magical realism elements and some great chemistry. Whereas Mari Okada's writting still rubs me in the wrong way sometimes
Lenlo
D: He did, back in August actually apparently
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: I heard Dino's voice actor died.
Kaiser-Eoghan
If we all took Goblin slayers attitude to trolls, then we would more easily ignore the trolls =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
Big twist in the golden kamuy manga.
Animosh
@SuperMario: remember that in the voice drama Rikka mentioned talking to Yuuta in their classroom during the ball game. Pretty sure it's about that.
SuperMario
@Animosh: i just watched the episode and noticed the lyrics as well. "The Promise" seems vague at the moment. Could be between Yuuta and whoever fits but I agree the "save someone from boredom" is about Akane
Animosh
You learn something every day. ;) Honestly though, I actually skipped the opening, so I hadn't even noticed that it had been translated until others pointed it out. And most of the time the lyrics are just cheesy one-liners, so I usually don't pay much attention to them either. But once in a while there's some nice hints hidden in there...
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I never really ever paid attention to the lyrics in anime openings, I'd never thought to.
Animosh
The Gridman OP has been translated for the first time, and there's some pretty interesting reveals in there: it mentions a "promise" made in a classroom (so now we know how Yuuta and Rikka bonded in the past - glad it wasn't a simple confession), and talks of "rescuing" someone (presumably Akane) from boredom. So I guess she'll join the good guys eventually?
Lenlo
1200 words. I need to stop writing so much.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I haven't seen last weeks episode of Irozuku or this weeks =< I'm waiting now for a bit to see if the series paysoff.
Animosh
Goddamn those magic segments in Irozuku were stunning! It's a shame its humdrum drama can't live up to its visual beauty, but I'll take it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think Ash's design is based a bit on River phoneix.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Sorry Eiji but your Ash is in another castle.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@CoolerAnon: I was about to say that. Kidnapping gets used alot in shojo.
Anonymous3072040
Yeah Ash is basically Princess Peach
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: I share your concerns, I don't know what studio is doing it. Some people want it to be mappa, some don't want it to be polygon pictures to adapt it. Its and long and violent manga, with some very funny at times dark humour, it could end up rushed and/or censored.
Anonymous3072021
As much as I love Dorohedoro I'm unsure if I should be happy or worried at it getting an adaptation, it isn't exactly the kind of story I imagine being easy to adapt well.
Lenlo
Yeah, I am touching on that in my writeup as we speak. The compressed story is causing Ash to be captured every other week.
Animosh
I agree Banana Fish was great this week though! My only gripe is that I'm getting sick and tired of seeing Ash get kidnapped again and again. He just escaped a couple of episodes ago! And he's just a lot more fun to watch when he's out there doing stuff.
Animosh
In a way the fights actually feel more realistic to me than those in Banana Fish. Sure, they're fantastical, bizarre even, but its battle system has a clear internal logic, and generally no power is infallible (each has its limitations). In Banana Fish the fights are rather poorly thought out by comparison. Their purpose is more to make Ash look cool than to give him realistic hurdles to overcome.
Animosh
@Kaiser: what sets Jojo apart from other battle shounen for me is how ridiculously creative its fights can get. Part 2 already shows some signs of this, but the introduction of the Stand system in Part 3 pushes it to another level, and in Part 4 the fights are consistently awesome. There are no simple beam struggles here: every fight is a battle of wits, between people with wildly different powers
Niel
Vinland Saga anime, and Now Dorohedoro just got announced. i'm really liking this trend.
Lenlo
Lots to writeup on Banana Fish this week.
Lenlo
Just finished it, I really like Blanca.
Lenlo
Because Jackie Chan and his stunt crew are some of the best in the world. There is a reason he has to insure his guys from his own pocket. No agency will take them
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have no idea how the hell Jackie Chan is still alive.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Action works best for me when I really feel that theres danger involved. Thats why when some actors do their own stunts, you can fear for the actors life, and also the character.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And thats why I'm a big fan of all that Chinese martial arts stuff from the 60s and 70s, that really expertly crafted chereography.
Lenlo
As for action, I like good choreography more than any super powers. Its why Cowboy Bebop, Seirei no Moribito, Sword of the Stranger and some Naruto fights are fantastic.
Lenlo
Im about to watch this weeks episode, so this chat makes me hopeful. I agree Ash and Eiji are the backbone of the series, and yeah me and Kaiser both agreed that the Gang war aspect was pretty weak, though I thought the finish with Arthur wasnt half bad
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I think Banana fish has a great grit to it for this reason.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm even more thankful to Banana fish too for that it keeps the action within the bounds of out of fantasy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've always been kind of a guns and swords and kungfu gut.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Black lagoons great example of anime action I can get behind.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I always found weapon combat and fist/kicking combat more raw and real,tangible than beamspam.
Anonymous3070972
But yeah if you're not a fan supernatural power fantasy action shounens, then maybe not your cup of tea, and that's totally cool
Anonymous3070972
Oh also if I'm recommending a fight from part 4, I'd say check out Highway Star
Anonymous3070972
Kira is a pretty cool villain though; he's always underpowered compared to the main heroes, but manages to somehow get out of the situation with luck or smarts; if nothing else, I'd recommend watching some Youtube clips
Anonymous3070972
*Turn off. lol.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its more than, even when I was younger supernatural power fantasy action shounen never appealed to me.
Anonymous3070972
Admittedly JoJo always has bad with exposition though, and always will be just due to the style, so that can definitely be a turn on for some people
Anonymous3070972
If you like slice of life with hijinks and a murder mystery combined with cool battles, you'll like part 4
Anonymous3070972
Yeah I can see why you might not like part 1 & 2, they were made in the 80s; I'd recommend part 4 and part 5 (ongoing rn) tbh, I feel like those are better for a modern viewing experience
Anonymous3070972
I used to think that BF's greatest strength was the plot; know I realize it's really about Ash & Eiji's connection first and foremost: as good as the plot can be, Ash & Eiji's relationship is absolutely the backbone.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: Also that scene where Ash is thinking to himself, looking over Eiji.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Nah, I pretty much gave up on jojo midway through part 2.
Total users: 28

Star Crossed Anime Blog

3 User(s) Online Join Server

Featured Posts

Seishun Buta Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai no Yume wo Minai – 07[Adolescence Paradox]

So we are on to the next arc and the next girl with adolence syndrome and while I give this series credit for breaking LN cliches, I feel like we could have the cast not be predominantly female. Well at least they are not all in love with the main character so I can give […]

Planetes – 9 & 10 [Regrets/A Sky of Stardust] – Throwback Thursday

Ah Planetes, one of the few things I look forward to every week since starting this. This time we have a number of background characters coming back in, Space continues to kill and Yuri gets some character. Lets jump in! Planetes actually managed to surprise me this week, if I am being honest. I was […]

Thunderbolt Fantasy 2 – 06-07 [A Poisoner’s Pride/ Bewitching Whispers]

My apologies that I missed a post last week, it’s not due to the lack of interest of Thunderbolt given the show is as exciting as ever, but more about my hectic life. These past two episodes have many game-changing events, and many Gui Niao’s wittiest lines and expressions to boost. The moment the Vapewiz […]

Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru – 7 [Bear Your Fangs at the Summit]

Welcome one and all! This week in Kaze Fui we meet the final boss, Kurahara gets a reality check and our team runs their first track meet! Lets jump in! To start off, I have to say I loved the feel of Kaze Fui this week. Vague, I know, but hear me out. Kaze Fui […]

Gaikotsu Shotenin Honda-San – 6 [The Man with a Secret Power/Our Fair-Day War]

Welcome fellow book lovers, to another dip into Honda-San! This week was a bit dull as we learn about the difficulties of stocking, but the second half manages to pick it back up. Lets jump in! So overall this week of Honda-San was pretty disappointing for me. Like usual it had some good gags in […]

SSSS.GRIDMAN – 06 [Contact]

“They shouldn’t making episodes without kaiju in them “ It’s very cheeky of GRIDMAN to meta-comment on this episode, as indeed there isn’t any big fight between Gridman and kaiju monsters this week. We still get an introduction of new kaiju, however, and the fight in human forms. That’s the thing about GRIDMAN, it’s a […]

Irozuku Sekai no Ashita kara – 06 [Golden Fish]

Irozuku takes us to episode 6 for something significant happen, but even then it’s decidedly under-dramatic. This week, we have a whole lot more of magical moments that certainly are the feast to the eyes, and develop many underlying themes of its narrative. The central of the conflict this week is Hitomi and Aoi, as […]

Zombieland Saga – 04-06[Warming Dead SAGA/The Nice Bird SAGA in Your Heart/Because It’s Sentimental SAGA]

Forgive me for my lack of coverage on this series but you may have guessed that my enthusiasm for it has died down considerably. I always felt that Zombieland Saga was in danger of losing what made it great in its first two episodes and sadly that has come to pass. This show has ultimately […]

Banana Fish – 18 [Islands in the Stream]

Ah Banana Fish, back in form this week. Ash and Eiji act like a married couple, Blanca show’s everyone whose boss and Yut continues to have no idea what’s going on. Lets jump in! On a general note Banana Fish is really picking back up. The Gang War/Hospital were easily the weakest part of the […]

Latest Reviews

Castlevania Season 2 Review – 72/100

According to much of the Western Anime community, this series wouldn’t be relevant for a site like this. Being made in the West by Americans, and English being its first language, many would disqualify it from the start. However I name them all fools for Castlevania, Directed by Sam Deats and Ryoichi Uchikoshi is clearly […]

Asobi Asobase (Summer 2018) Review – 83/100

In a year where comedy shows gain an unexpected strong showing, somehow a show about 3 cute girls and their pass-timer club emerges as one of the best comedy around. Yep, forget Hinamatsuri, forget Grand Blue, forget Chio-chan, Asobi Asobase delivers some hilarious absurdist laugh-out-loud moments for the ages. It helps that we were in […]

Planet With Anime Review – 90/100

Planet With is an anime that likely leaves many unimpressed when they look at the cover and makes for a solid proof that you cannot judge a book by it’s cover or even by it’s first episode. Many have overlooked this show in it’s season but for those that did give it chance it went […]

My Hero Academia: Two Heroes (Dubbed) Review – 84/100

Ah, the movie tie in. A right of passage for all aspiring Shounen series. Some, like One Piece have weathered it and come out Golden, while others are better forgotten (Looking at you Bleach). My Hero Academia: Two Heroes, in my opinion, is closer to former. Animated by BONES , Directed by Kenji Nagasaki and […]

A quick and dirty review of Angolmois: Record of the Mongol Invasion

What it claims to be about: Angolmois (a reference to a Nostradamus prophesy which is rather irrelevant for the show, as he lived several centuries after the events) focuses on the first Mongol Invasion of Japan in 1274. Specifically it focuses on the early phase of the invasion when the Mongols attack Tsushima, which essentially […]

Steins;Gate 0 Anime Review – 60/100

Before I begin this review in earnest, I have to ask, who doesn’t know about Steins;Gate? The amazing, beloved original series that Steins;Gate 0 is an offshoot of. Well if you don’t, if you haven’t seen the original, then stop now. Steins;Gate 0 is not worth it. It is not for you. Without having seen […]

Mirai (2018) Movie Review – 81/100

Watching Mirai, there are two observations that spring right up to my mind: Mirai is Hosoda’s most grounded, personal film and it plays out completely different from what I expected based from the promotional materials. My feeling is confirmed when I later learned that Hosoda based the concept from watching his own children’s react, and […]

Fate/Extra Last Encore Anime Review – 40/100

To many the Fate series is daunting with its numerous incarnations and spinoffs and here in the year of many a Fate adaption we get another one by Studio Shaft which was first thought to adapt the story of the PSP game Fate/Extra. Fate/Extra could basically be considered Fate with a sci-fi twist as this […]

Darling in the Franxx Anime Review – 57/100

In following anime seasons it can be quite an experience to follow a show as it airs as the hype and rollercoaster of reactions can be entertainment in its own right. In that regard Darling in the Franxx was a hell of a ride as week by week peoples feelings for it ran hot and […]