Posted on 6 October 2017 with categories: Anime Reviews, Made in Abyss, Reviews by AidanAK47

There are few series which can capture the mystery and wonder of a fantasy world as well as Made in Abyss. Their world is dangerous, brutal and unforgiving but beautiful, wondrous and exciting in it’s presentation. The story is of a ordinary girl called Riko and a mysterious cyborg boy called Regu traveling down the levels of a massive chasm called the abyss. With each level they encounter new people and monsters alike as they work together to survive the darwinian nature of the chasms ecosystem. The story boosts some of the finest presentation of the anime of the year alongside a gripping tale that never lets go till its conclusion. The characters are memorable though which each level brings a new cast to the forefront. Ozen and Nanochi are the strongest out the cast. But the dynamic between Riko’s optimistic easygoing attitude and Regu’s more negative questioning nature works well in exploring the morality and dangers of this world. The shows strongest aspect is the world building and atmosphere of the setting. Accentuated by the visuals the Abyss is truly a marvel of nature that makes for a fantastic backdrop.

The pacing may be a bit slow for some but I see no way to make it faster and the character designs may look kiddy and lighthearted but Made in Abyss holds darker themes. When it goes for the emotional gut punch it is often heavy and effective. It doesn’t shy away from the uglier side of nature and exploring as well as the dark parts of it’s history. Aside from one or two rare moments the animation in this show is excellent and the backgrounds are beautiful landscapes giving even the best artists in the industry a run for their money. Which isn’t all that surprising when you consider that a former Ghibli background artist worked on the series. The music is equally excellent with standouts like the series ending theme Tomorrow and Hanezeve Caradhina. Tomorrow being a personal favorite for how it closes out the series with melancholy nostalgia and wonder.

Sadly at the point of writing this review this is the only season of the series and the final episode does leave many loose ends behind. This season can be seen as a prologue of things to come and it’s lack of conclusion hurts the series as a whole. The pacing takes it’s time and because of it’s single cour length people could feel that the story didn’t truly get started. At the moment chances of a second season look promising but in the anime industry there are no guarantees. As such people could be left wanting more by the time the final credits roll which is something that could be considering a positive as this is basically an advertisement for the manga but I need to knock off points as this story works some much better as an animated product that I doubt the manga could match it’s level of presentation. Nonetheless what is present here is more than worth checking it out as it still has powerful moments, atmosphere and world building second to none. I have no doubt that this series will be seen as one of the best anime of 2017 in future years to come.

Posted on 4 October 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Made in Abyss

Normally when I finish a series I take a moment to think back on it and try to imagine just how I would make it better. Maybe better pacing or removing a certain character or story arc that went nowhere or just improving the animation at certain points. But with Made in Abyss I tried to do the same thing and found myself coming up blank. I really cannot see how this series could have been done better and in thinking of this I came to realise this series may have far more value that I initially realised. Potentially the value to be called a future classic of the genre but that may be me getting ahead of myself. Well the finale of this series goes out with a bang as we have a double length episode to close out the series. The majority of this episode detailed about how Nanochi began living in the abyss and how she and Mitty came to be twisted into the forms they are now. Finally ending off with Mitty being mercy killed and Nanochi joining Riko and Regu on their journey to the bottom of the abyss. I was right that with Nanochi added to the group that the group dynamic is far better as a whole. Nanochi adds a playfulness that makes the interactions more fun to watch and I am certain she would be a boon in the future of the story.

There were a lot of emotional moments during this finale and this may just be the best episode of the series. Bondrewd looks to be trying to make up for his lack of presence throughout the series by pumping all his villain credibility into this one episode wherein his actions are so morally disgusting that I was wishing for his death by the halfway point of this episode. The transformation of the two girls was absolutely brutal with Mitty’s horrific dissolving into a tangled genetic mess being the stuff of nightmares. I pray some ignorant parent does not mistake this show for a children’s cartoon or this would be a level of trauma they might not get back from. Provided they made it through the arm breaking scene. Though as disturbing as it may be that didn’t quite affect me due to my resistance built up over the years. However to my absolute shock the death of Mitty hit me harder than I ever thought it would. I didn’t think I would find her death so tragic but i found myself welling with emotion at Nanochi setting up the toys and comforting Mitty in her last moments. The dam broke when Nanochi had a brief moment of regret, calling off Regu and hugging Mitty while apologizing, only to walk back and ask Regu to kill her again. I didn’t cry buckets but tears did roll down my face and being the soulless husk that i am, I consider any show that can wringe that level of emotion out of me something truly special. As a side note i was surprised to see that Riko has a scar after all the treatment.With years of watching anime where in bandages heal all wounds without a single blemish it’s great to see some lasting consequences.

Sadly though I say I have trouble imagining this show being better, if there is one flaw I could truly pick out it would be this. The show ended at the point it wasn’t supposed to end. In the final minutes the main cast has come together, the main villain(At this time) has been made apparent and this truly is the real beginning of this story. Suddenly roll credits. Want more? Read the manga. The chances of a second season are not quite grim and I would like to believe that a show as good as this would get the sales it deserves. However anime continuation has always been tied to the sales of its source and no matter how good it is, if there is no return from that then there is no second season. It’s a sad thing that adapting a source to competition is the exception rather than the norm. I thought about picking up the manga again on this series end but as I saw the small balloon float through the various beautiful levels of the abyss with that evocative melody playing I realised that without the music, sound, colour and gorgeous backgrounds that this series just wouldn’t have the same level of impact. The artwork of the manga is nothing to scoff at but I still doubt it can bring forth the same magical feeling and atmosphere of the anime. So I will hold off on reading this group’s future adventures until I can be certain no second season is coming. Then I will jump in due to necessity. Hopefully that will not be the case. For now despite it’s incomplete nature I am willing to say this will be making it into my best anime of the year list.

Posted on 26 September 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Made in Abyss

Today’s topic is the curse of the abyss alongside much needed revenge against the creature that put Riko in a bad spot. We get a rare glimpse of the topside village where one of the orphan kids we saw previously is deathly sick on his birthday. This caught me off guard as I believe I heard Regu mention that the boys birthday was soon when he left and it hit me that the two really have only spend a few days in the abyss. Over the weeks of watching them the journey certainly felt a lot longer and that really is a great thing for a series to make me feel a disconnect with time that Riko and Regu feel. The child suffering from a fever is taken to a medical ship and just by looking at it is bound to remind people of Ghibli works. The reason for that is simple for the background artist for this series has indeed worked on Ghibli movies. The purpose of this scene is to show that the child’s sickness disappears once he leaves the island which does seem to suggest that the curse of the abyss doesn’t just affect those diving but also the town on the surface.

Nanochi goes into greater detail over how exactly it works by using a thin sheet as a representative of the curse. One her word the curse appears to be some sort of forcefield that is affected by things pushing against it. The important aspect to this is that more dangerous creatures of the abyss can use the curse to anticipate how targets move, making it seem like they can see the future. Nanochi appears to be able to see the curse and she sends out Regu to take down the orb piercer as a test for him to get a feel for it. In the test Regu manages to save a cave raider and even surprises Nanochi with his beam cannon ability. But even so the beast manages to escape before being blown apart. Our episode ends with Nanochi making a request to Regu to have him kill Mitty with his beam cannon. Quite a depressing turn for the end of the episode and really makes you think on an earlier comment by Nanochi. For earlier Nanochi started that Mitty’s blood can neutralize orb piercer poison but the question is, just how did she find that out? By anyones guess she may have attempted to kill her by injecting the poison into her, only for it to backfire. Nanochi seem reluctant to do the job the messy way so it’s likely she tried alternatives to kill Mitty. Of course not because of hate but rather to put the poor thing out of it’s misery.

That may be something RIko objects to as Mitty and her seem to have had some sort of spiritual connection. The dream which RIko had was odd as it seemed to involve some memories of her being carried in the relic when she was a baby and taking comfort in the eye of Mitty staring at her. In regards to Mitty I had a feeling that she was going to have to be gotten rid of as she is the only thing tying down Nanochi to this place and without her she can then join Regu and Riko on their quest to the bottom of the abyss. Though Mitty’s blood would make for a useful thing if it really can neutralize any poison but it certainly would be cruel to drag her down into the abyss. But she also clearly cannot survive on her own, even if her survival depends on Nanochi’s horrible cooking. That’s an aspect I wonder about as I am not certain if the transformation has killed Nanochi’s taste buds or her childhood was so messed up that she didn’t know what good food tastes like. Next week is the last episode of the series and while we are getting an hour long episode i wonder just how this series will close off. The way it’s currently looking is that Nanochi will join the group and the series will end with them journeying to the next layer which would be a rather anticlimactic conclusion.

Posted on 20 September 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Made in Abyss

It’s been an issue I have wanted to bring up before but the previous episode recaps of this series are rather long. Today’s was the biggest offender as the first three and a half minutes was just footage from the previous episode. While these kinds of recaps are handy for those watching weekly to catch up, they do pose a problem to those marathoning the series in the future as they will likely be moving from episode to episode which each starting with an unnecessary reminder. Of course I realise that these recaps are not so much for informing the viewer of previous events but rather making it that less needs to be animated for each new episode. I doubt Made in Abyss is a cheap series to produce and those backgrounds alone must take serious effort. Regardless being the greedy sod I am I cannot help at feel disappointed that less content is present in each episode. Whether you love it or hate it, Re:Zero did right by making it that the opening and ending were often cut from the episode in favor of animating more content. (Still waiting on a second season White Fox. New Ova is giving me hope, but there better be a second season announcement.)

As the episode title suggests, this episode was all about Nanachi. Nanachi being living proof of what happens when you try to ascend the abyss from the sixth layer. She got off lucky by keeping her sanity and personality despite be turned into a rabbit like creature but her friend wasn’t so lucky. Mitty is more like the real result that would happen should a human try to ascend the abyss, a gelatinous genetic mess with little cognitive function. It’s still uncertain as to what the curse of the Abyss is but this certainly qualifies as a fate worse than death. I really like that this show really doesn’t hold back on the glorious duties of hospital treatment. Suppositories, piss soaked rags and even attaching fungi in a similar manner to leech therapy. This stuff isn’t pretty but it gets the job done and when you’re a patient, dignity stays at the door. So far I like Nanachi’s dynamic to the group as she’s the more experienced but also playful and smarmy addition to the group. She already works well with Regu’s straight laced nature and with Riko’s earnest attitude I think she could add a lot to the series. Of course it’s still a question of whether she is actually going to join the two on their quest to the bottom of the abyss but the opening and ending of the series almost makes that a certainty.

There is a small glimpse into Regu’s memories as he recalls being present at the grave marker for Riko’s mother and the words he recalls seem to suggest that Riko’s mother was the last to see Regu off when he journeyed to the surface. I sincerely doubt that RIko’s mother is alive at this point and even if she is alive i would say she’s likely no longer human. In fact I was willing to bet on Nanachi being the transformed form of her mother but considering her reactions to the whistle and her connection to the other white whistle that is looking to be unlikely. We are nearing the end of this series and while the last episode is an hour long feature I have to wonder on just what note Made in Abyss will end on.

Posted on 13 September 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Made in Abyss

I was well on my way to saying that Made in Abyss may have dark elements but is isn’t an inherently dark show. Then this episode came along and hit like a jackhammer. For as cheery as the episode started, it most certainly took a dark turn. The darkest turn this series has taken to date. Riko and Regu encounter a porcupine like creature that seems above what they can handle and Riko is injured and poisoned by the creature. Regu manages to escape barely by ascending to another platform which of course means that Riko is hit with the Abysses curse. At first it looks like the curse actually worked in her favor as the bleeding looks to push the poison out of her system. That is of course until she starts bleeding from her eyes and ears and basically everywhere. The abysses curse has never been pretty but this is it at it’s most gruesome as seeing Regu panicking as Riko slowly bleeds out is an unnerving sight.

So with Riko gravely injured and poisoned, it’s up to Regu to do whatever he can to save her life. With happens to be some extreme measures as Riko instructs him to perform a makeshift amputation to remove her poisoned arm. What follows may be the hardest anime episode of the season to watch as Regu desperately attempts to cut off Riko’s arm while keeping his emotions in check. I winced as I saw Regu pick up the rock in order to break her arm in order to make it easier to cut and when it came to the cutting itself…christ…how did we get from whimsical adventure to this? Despite it being well over half the series we finally see the rabbit girl featured in the opening and ending.

I expected her to be more of a comedic addition to the group but from the looks of things she’s likely going to act as the experience mentor to the two. She already knows quite a good bit more about the abyss than they do and seems to be experienced in medical treatment. With this we can say the kid gloves are off. Riko almost died and these abyss creatures are not playing around. There are no Hazu’s, no Ozen’s, no Dorm leaders and even their books aren’t going to help them now. Funtime is over and the real game starts now. Though speaking of which, Made in Abyss could make for a fantastic game if handled correctly.

Posted on 5 September 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Made in Abyss

Surprising as it is, this episode appears to be mostly anime original content. Though not quite filler as it appears this content was supposed to be in the original manga but the author was pushed to cut it out due to the series not doing particularly well at the time. Seems that with the anime the author got it added back in with this episode and I am quite glad he did as it really shows Riko growing to appreciate just how much Regu does for her. As well as the dangers of Regu’s incinerator weapon which may pack a powerful punch but it’s cooldown time puts Riko in serious danger. On top of that we have an example of just how devastating the curse of the abyss can be on someone in the lower levels even when ascending a small slope.

I was originally put off by Riko sacrificing the little creatures in order to distract the bigger monsters from noticing them though it certainly isn’t out of character for her. After all she is the survivalist type who believes in the natural order of things. The thing is that I believe this action had great ramifications for her throughout this episode. These things have been watching them since they entered the great fault and after that action it honestly looks like they were trying to kill Riko. Riko comments the little guys were leading them to food and water however they end up leading her straight into the lair of a Madokajack. Then when being chased by the Crimson Splitjaw the Neritantans blocked the exit so she couldn’t get out before chickening out at the sight of the massive predator. Then it appears they lead her to a monster who would eat her up only for her to cut her way out of it. Finally they all gathered and attacked her at once which Riko blamed on her smelling like the fruit they eat. Taking all these little things into account I think these creatures were holding a grudge.

As pointed out by a commenter in the last post, the last episode of this series will be a one hour special. Taking that into account this series has about six episodes of content left. At the moment the anime has covered up to chapter 18 of the manga with about 42 chapters out currently. From what I hear there is a good ending point at chapter 38. Possibly with some faster pacing the anime could reach that point but I feel reluctant to say it should speed up. From what I seen, Manga readers appear rather flustrated over the anime’s pacing. Not due to it being inaccurate but rather at the speed it’s currently at they won’t be able to see the moments they want to see animated. However I find the pace of the anime to be perfect as we spend just enough time in each level of the abyss to stop it feeling like a tick on a checklist. My general problem isn’t so much how this series is presented as i actually considering it superior to it’s manga counterpart. My problem is more that this series doesn’t have the runtime it truly needs. The extended last episode certainly helps in this regard but having a two cour series could have done wonders for this show.

Posted on 30 August 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Made in Abyss

The survival training didn’t quite seem so bad in retrospect or maybe Regu and Riko got off lucky. The way Ozen put it, it seemed like they would be fighting for their lives constantly. But they basically had to take down a hippo like creature and forage for food. We did get quite a bit of info on how time in the Abyss appears to work differently from the surface as well as Ozen talking about the three active white Whistles. Considering they got extra detail it’s likely the next white whistle the two will encounter is Bondrewd the Novel while the other two are likely to not appear in this seasons runtime. While Ozen turned out to be a good ally despite appearing villainous, I think Bondrewd isn’t going to be quite so friendly. After all if Ozen wasn’t joking about a White Whistles duty to dispose of Relic’s like Regu then it’s likely Bondrewd will attempt to kill Regu.

At least we see what RIko’s mother looked like and we know who to blame for giving her a potato face. One really has to wonder just what Lysa saw in Toska for he certainly didn’t seem all that impressive for the couple of seconds he was on screen. Ozen’s reaction to it was rather amusing though and it does seem to be the case that she saw Toska as something which weakened Lysa’s resolve. However it seems that Lysa is still determined to reach the bottom of the abyss and made Ozen promise to prepare and send Riko down to her. This does throw a wrench into my previous assumption of Riko mistakenly thinking the world revolves around her as it appears it does to a certain extent. The episode ended well with Maruruks goodbye which was surprisingly effective despite their limited screentime. I guess the idea that Riko and Regu where the only real friends Maruruk had and possibly ever will have is enough to give their tearful goodbye needed impact.

As pointed out by members of this site, what remains a big problem with Made in Abyss is that the story is gearing up to get started and yet the series is nearing it’s end. There doesn’t appear to be enough source material to provide a second season and as anime is generally an advertisement for manga the likelihood of a second season would depend on the popularity of this series not waning. Made in Abyss, much like many other Anime, has a high chance of leaving it’s unfinished story without the ending it deserves. The only way to see the conclusion would be to start reading the manga but even then the manga could get axed and the ending would be rushed and unsatisfying. I don’t mean to say that Made in Abyss should have an anime original ending. But this does feel like a story that needs a second season even to just show the grown of Regu and Riko. As a last note Ozen apparently dislocates her back in order to sit at a table. Seems like a painful way to do things but being as old as she is maybe it helps with Arthritis.

Posted on 23 August 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Made in Abyss

Well it’s official, Ozen is now my favorite character of this series. Big revelations today and one of the biggest is that Riko by all accounts should not be alive as the relic which protected her as a baby is revealed to have a different function. It can bring dead things back to life for a small period of time. Riko was originally a stillbirth which makes a lot of sense as her mother was diving into the abyss when she was pregnant with her. So of course the baby wouldn’t be able to handle the journey. However when Ozen threw her into the curse repealing relic she miraculously came back to life. Thus Ozen concludes that Riko was only temporarily brought back to life and that her life will end very shortly. I think Ozen is discounting something though as her experiments dealt with things long dead like a piece of meat. Riko has managed to grow up and life for quite a number of years so it’s possible that she will have a normal lifespan. Though Ozen did remark that all things brought back to life with the relic started moving towards the center of the abyss so it could very well be that if Riko reaches the bottom of the abyss that she would die.

Ozen also proves that she isn’t called unmovable as a matter of metaphor but her strength makes her quite immovable. She toed the line of becoming an antagonist but I felt during the episode that this was all some level of tough love. After all if Ozen really wanted to get rid of these kids then she would have done it before introducing them to Marluk. The fight itself did seems to be her testing them on a number of matters even if her methods were well…questionable. She tested out just how much punishment Regu could take but got too into it that she went fairly overboard. However even if his was excessively cruel she did teach them how an enemy would exploit their weaknesses. She turning Regu’s laser and pointing it at Riko definitely showed that Regu’s laser has too long a charge time and can be too easily misdirected. Ozen figured out that after firing it he would be out cold for two hours which certainly gives the laser a high price for it’s use. Ozen also showed that Regu’s arms can’t restrain everything and use them to help disarm him. So in the end this thing was her assessing their combat abilities and then deciding what training would be suitable for them.

Ozen is lot older than she looks as well as she helped mentor Riko’s mother when she was a small child. Looks like their relationship wasn’t as simple as being rivals and Ozen actually has a bit of a soft spot for her. Though she looks to have difficulty expressing it. I mean she dug up her friends grave just to verify whether there was a body inside which is rather excessive and tactless. Though with that Ozen denied her earlier claim and stated that Riko’s mother was indeed waiting for her lower in the abyss. It’s still up in the air as to whether this is a lie to give Riko motivation to continue. Ozen’s the mentor to get these kids in shape and she’s already thrown them into a kind of training I remember seeing in Full Metal Alchemist. Throwing them into the wilds and saying good luck. If I had to guess this would likely be training for for Riko than Regu as Ozen pointed out that the degree that he could protect Riko was limited so it looks like RIko is going to have to be more than the brains of the operation.

Posted on 16 August 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Made in Abyss

I feel like Riko has been naked quite a lot in this series and I thank god that it’s not treated in a fanservice manner. That may be something that should be par for the course but with my experience in anime it often takes every opportunity to throw in some fanservice. At this point I have become rather immune to it but I can appreciate that Riko has been topless on screen a number of times and it doesn’t make me feel like I am watching something that could potentially get me arrested. Something that I cannot say so easily about certain other shows which shall not be named. The episode recaps at the start of episodes feel like they are getting longer but animation still is at a high level which I hope continues till the end of the season. I am surprised at Ozen whom I originally had pegged to be significantly more villainous by the end of the last episode. This episode instead shows her as a much more playful character than her intimating design would suggest. She reminds me a bit of a Katanamonogatari character with her eyes and general listlessness. So far she is acting the role of the cynic, and raining on Riko’s earlier misplaced optimism. One by confirming that her mother is indeed dead and also verifying that the message inspiring this whole journey was not written by her.

I find this rather…cathartic. Riko has so far attributed that everything that has happened so far is related to her. Much like the main character in a story she thinks that the world revolves around her only to have Ozen confirm that she doesn’t really have anything to do with this at all. Of course we don’t quite know if Ozen is telling the truth or not but based on the character she has shown in this episode I don’t quite think she’s the type to lie. In fact this journey appears to be more about Regu than anything else and Riko is more just the tagalong. Sadly this episode ends right before what looks to be the biggest and most shocking reveal but we did get some interesting things. We have a strange corpse like creature that Riko saw in the middle of the night as well as some new info on the Abyss.

My guess is that this corpse being happened to be the Whistles that tried to ascend from the lower levels and got hit with the curse at it’s worst. But as to why it happened to be in Ozen’s house at that moment does make me wonder whether Ozen is experimenting on them. For other exposition we have Marulk who lets us know that the further down you get in the abyss, the more complex the artifacts become. As well as how a tree this giant can grow in the abyss by taking nutrients from the sea floor of the land above. Also Marulk may be a boy instead of a girl seeing how he reacted to Riko walking in naked and Regu inquiring about his gender. So we have reached the halfway point of this series and I do wonder just what twists await with this white cube and how it will effect the story going forward.

Posted on 9 August 2017 with categories: Currently Watching:, Made in Abyss

This was one of those anime episodes where I am shocked to see the end credits show up as the time flew by when watching it. I often consider that a mark of a truly great series while a bad series can make you feel like an episode never ends. Though I will say that this post may be shorter than my usual ones as there isn’t really much to say story wise other than Riko and Regu continuing their travel down. I will rescind my previous mark about Riko carrying her own weight as while Regu is handling most of the grunt work, Riko is doing a good job directing the expedition while making use of her knowledge of the abyss. Allowing her to warn Regu of some the creatures such as the one introduced with this episode. I think by now the kids gloves are off and we are starting to get a bit dark with the story with these corpse weavers.

Birdlike creatures that eat explorers and then imitate their voice in order to lure others into a trap. This seems much more open a dark turn and afterwards we even have Regu comment on them eating a corpse weaver being indirect cannibalism. Still despite this the general tone of the show seems carefree which could be attributed to how easily Riko is taking all these events, though Regu is not quite handling it with as much cheery disposition. I wonder if it’s supposed to be symbolic that a big source of human morality in this series comes from the character who is at this moment known to be a robot? Perhaps showing that the humans in this world have been distorted from traditional common sense into something more darwinist?

When a group of corpse weavers attempt to eat Riko this triggers a change in Regu causing him to unveil an ability he displayed in the first episode. That he is able to fire a beam of light from his arm and boy do I appreciate that this series has managed to keep up a high level of quality animation to really show it off. Well there was a moment during the monkey chase that had the rather outdated use of speed lines but other than that the production of this series has been truly top notch. Riko is delighted over this new ability and names it incinerator while Regu is mortified at the fact that if his aim was only slightly off then he would have blasted away Riko along with the corpse weavers. It’s interesting in how these two approach this journey in completely different mindsets. Riko sees this whole thing as some big field trip, a chance to have an adventure and live up to the legacy of her mother.

Whereas Regu is really beginning to acknowledge just how dangerous this journey really is and question the very purpose of his existence. There is definitely a turning point in their characters coming up and I feel this series is building up a wake up call for Riko. She has lost two of the main guides which her tossing the star compass and now her notebook has been burned to cinders. The corpse weavers where the first genuine threat these two have faced, I don’t really count the monkeys as they didn’t really pose that much of a threat, so it only stands to reason that monsters will get worse the further these two get. The safety nets are falling away and I think she’s about to encounter something that won’t be solved with a happy go lucky attitude. That something likely being her mother’s former partner whom looks to be the focus of the next episode.

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Serial Experiments Lain Anime Review – 78/100 – Throwback Thursday

Serial Experiments Lain is weird. It is a series unlike any other, wholly unique in anime, both modern and historical. Every aspect of it, from presentation to narrative, is best described as an experience. It is because of this that I believe Lain is a must watch, if only to experience a piece of anime […]

Penguin Highway (2018) Movie Review – 89/100

You’re walking along in your neighborhood, going about your daily routine. It’s a fine morning. The sun is shining brightly. But suddenly, you see something strange. You squint your eyes; even rub them, to make sure it isn’t a mirage before exclaiming with excitement, “Oh, look. It’s a bird. No, it’s a plane! No no. […]

One Punch Man Season 2 Anime Review – 34/100

Often at the start of one of these reviews, I will wax philosophical about a series. Attempting to slowly draw you, the reader, in to whatever topic or anime I am discussing in that review. This time, none of that. This time, I have to come out and say from the beginning, that One Punch […]

Dororo Anime Review – 55/100

In the modern anime sphere, getting a complete story, start to finish, is a rare thing. As is getting an adaptation for an older work. Dororo however has, through the grace of Twin Engine, managed to get both of these. Based on the 1967 manga of the same name by legendary Mangaka Osamu Tezuka, Dororo […]

[Star Crossed Anime Exclusive] Code Geass: Lelouch of the Resurrection Review – 80/100

I was lucky enough to be at Sakura-con in Seattle on 20 April 2019 for the Funimation’s movie premiere of Code Geass’ third movie with the Director himself, Gorō Taniguchi, along with his senior staff in attendance inside a room full of raving fans. Was it was worth the decade-long wait to have a worthy […]

Paranoia Agent Anime Review – 67/100

In an era of the mundane, where every series is the same moe blob, the weird sticks out. Even the most mediocre series can get attention just by being weird. Paranoia Agent is not mediocre, and it is far beyond simply “weird”. Written and Directed by Satoshi Kon, Paranoia Agent is one of his last […]

Boogiepop wa Warawanai (2019) (Winter 2019) Anime Review – 78/100

Just like the titular character, Boogiepop Phantom the series has become some sort of urban legend itself in this medium. Its Light Novels are amongst the first Light Novel ever released, dating back to mid-90s. Moreover, the franchise has endured the test of time, as it inspires anime, live-action adaptations and Boogiepop is a well-known […]

Kouya no Kotobuki Hikoutai (2019 Winter) Anime Review – 77/100

Coming to Kotobuki, there are lots of aspect that catch my attention: it’s from a famed director Tsutomu Mizushima who can turn the most trashable and genre-able concepts into something intriguing; it’s an CG show about air pilots: it has extended aerial combat set-pieces. Watching it till the end, I have to tip my hat […]

Kemurikusa (2019 Winter) Anime Review – 79/100

Kemurikusa is your very definition of an overlooked gem, one that never really gain much discussion anywhere, but one that has a distinctive style from an up-and-coming auteur who has full control of his projects. Coming to Kemurikusa, all the attention it has came from the fact that it is created by TATSUKI, a mastermind […]