Posted on 16 April 2011 with categories: X-Men



The big question right now is whether or not that new character will go down the Mary Sue path: will she be a stable addition to the cast or will she completely take over the show with her powers? As a teenager, she doesn’t really fit amongst the characters of this series, but if she just remains in her role as victim who needs time to learn how to control her powers, then she’ll be a good addition to the plot.

Thanks to these cliches this episode was the least interesting X-Men episode so far. As build-up it should be fine, but at the same time this pace should not continue onto the next episode. Still, Emma Frost is a good addition to this cast, and she did a good job of being not obvious whether she was lying or telling the truth about having nothing to do with Jean’s death. That’s a nice thing for later on.

The most disappointing of this episode was the silly bad guy, though. He looked so cool, yet when he actually started fighting he completely lost control for no reason. I mean, Wolverine’s villains were also quite simple, but at least all of them kicked ass and were threatening in a fight.

Which brings me to the one thing that Wolverine did better than the X-Men: it had a convincing villain. Shingen perhaps was a bit too cool at times, but he stood apart, was a force to be reckoned with and he always had his presence. The bad guy here though… the U-Men still haven’t convinced me whether they’re something special.
Rating: * (Good)

Posted on 9 April 2011 with categories: X-Men




For the past years, I’ve always had a ton of trouble figuring out which series to blog. This time though, I don’t have that at all. I already have a very good idea of the 10 series that I’m going to blog this season, even though four of them haven’t aired yet. Seriously, there is a lot of good stuff in this season. First of all, X-Men. The show with the best character designs of the season.

Beyond that though, we finally get to see the real potential of the Marvel Anime. This was the calibre that I expected when Madhouse first announced this project. While Wolverine was a major step above Iron Man,the X-Men again are a step above Wolverine. All they have to do now is properly pace their story like Wolverine dd (with its admittedly far simpler story) and this will be really excellent.

This show just has a terrific sense of atmosphere. The build-up, characters, animation and music all contribute wonderfully to it. The drama around Cyclops can be a bit cheesy, but it does work at creating some necessary tension between the lead characters: not enough to get obnoxious, but enough to push them forward and make them more interesting.

The story so far is simple, but pretty effective. Innocent mutants being kidnapped: it works, and has the potential to develop into something interesting later on. I especially love how that one guy who was turned into a monster was draw. I don’t mean his monster form, but rather the moment where he actually died. The thing with this series is that the character designs are vastly different, and yet both the flamboyant main characters and the average minor characters: all of them look like a lot of time was spent on their designs, to make all of them unique. This is what really impressed me about these first two episodes.

What’s really refreshing about this season as well is that for once, teenagers aren’t dominating in nearly every series. Remember how during the previous Winter-Season, Wolverine was the only series that did not have a teenager as its lead character? Instead, we have multiple series here with lead characters in their twenties and even thirties. Yay for variety!
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 2 April 2011 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions, X-Men

Nichijou

Short Synopsis: Our lead character is a random schoolgirl.
There’s no shortage of creativity in Nichijou. Its entire premise is based around the fact that it’s about the every day lives of a group of random school girls who live in a world in which anything can happen. This episode shows random explosions, androids and goats and the characters don’t even seem to find them unusual. That’s what’s good about Nichijuo. Its problem is that that’s also pretty much the only praise I have for this series. Unlike K-On and Lucky Star, this show tries to be a comedy… and it’s just not funny. It does not know what punchlines are, nor how to build up a good joke. It’s full of randomness for the sake of randomness, and seems to believe that just by doing something completely random, it can get funny, though such a thing already got old in the OVA. In the same way, the characters aren’t much to write home about. Kyoani has this thing with characters who are cute for the sake of being cute, and this is no exception. Nichijou just tries way too hard to be mainstream and popular. It’s just too forced.
OP: Badly sung and not really special.
ED: Again a boring song with that just feels like a copy paste of just about every other ED out there.
Potential: 30%

Dog Days

Short Synopsis: Our lead character is the legendary savior for a country of dog people.
That was just insulting. This show had the privilege of being anime original, and yet the creators actually come with this kind of crap? The creators of Nanoha A’s have sunk to a completely new depth here. this was by far the worst I’ve ever seen from them. I can see the intentions of the creators: creating a fantasy setting where two countries have to participate in all kinds of fantastic games at fantastic setting hols potential to be an enjoyable and fun series. But this was just so ridiculously poorly executed. It committed just about every flaw imaginable. The characters are a joke, the setting of having dog people fight cat people, surrounded by teenagers with unexplained superpowers is equal to a slap in the face. The character designs are utterly terrible, the script is abysmal, and the worst thing is that it actually believes that it’s funny and witty. It refuses to make proper use of its silly setting, and it doesn’t even make jokes. It just expects tot get laughs from… nothing. This is… this is even worse than Rio Rainbow Gate. At least that series was aware that it was terrible.
OP: Boring visuals and boring song.
ED: Ridiculously generic.
Potential: 0%

X-Men

Short Synopsis: Our lead characters are a bunch of mutants who fight crime.
That was actually… pretty amazing here. Seriously, this episode hit a ton of right buttons, and sets the X-Men already one step higher above Wolverine. The graphics were utterly gorgeous, the atmosphere is just awesome, and already this show has put in a lot of characterization for its five main characters: Xavier, Cyclops, Storm, Wolverine and Beast. The atmosphere is heavy and the drama tends to get a bit sappy at times, but it all works surprisingly well with each other. Plus, this show also isn’t afraid to sometimes toy with its characters (the joke around Wolverine’s entrance especially was hilarious, in a “couldn’t resist”-way). As for Madhouse’s usual acting problem: the thing is that the character-designs of this series are utterly amazing. The creators not only gave a wonderful rendition of the X-Men in anime form, but they gave every single character, even the minor ones, a unique and individual look. That’s obviously harder to animate, but even then the animators do a pretty good job here. Instead, my qualm is that the voice actors should have tried to be a bit more varied, and they’re a tad too hammy at times. On the other hand though, the soundtrack is yet again amazing, and at this rate it could get even better than Wolverine’s. Seriously, ti’s been a while since the start of a season has been this impressive.
OP: Best one of the Marvel Anime so far!
ED: Again, no vocals, and a good way to close off each episode.
Potential: 85%

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