Posted on 5 October 2009 with categories: Natsu no Arashi, Some Quick First Impressions

Sora no Otoshimono

Short Synopsis: Our lead character gets his own god-mode android angel servant.
Well hello… fanservice. Well, at least this shows knows its target audience, but it still puzzles me why they don’t just turn these concepts into hentai-series. Here we have a series in which an android angel servant falls from the sky, and the lead character just happens to be at the right time and place to have her bump into him so that she makes a contract with him and fulfills every of his wishes. The guy is your typical teenager, so you can imagine how he ends up abusing these powers. The series has the typical flaws of a harem-series: lots of clichés (he gets woken up by a cute childhood friend, there’s a huge magical sakura tree near where they live, et cetera), pointless fanservice and a male lead of who you wonder why he’s even popular with girls. I think the biggest flaw of this series is the lead character himself. Sure, there have certainly been worse versions of him, but his attempts at being funny just end up as annoying and his voice-acting is pretty annoying to listen to. I liked the white-haired guy, but overall this is just a waste of a perfectly good budget.
ED: I presume that the animation is going to be filled in the next episode. The song is nothing special, but not particularly bad.
Potential: 10%

Miracle Train

Short Synopsis: Our lead character tries to help troubled ladies along with his team of bishies.
Aha, Iyashi-kei! It’s been a while since we had one of those. This episode really had that typical calming atmosphere of the Iyashi-kei series, but at the same time it also has a lot of issues. Most notably, the bishies. I like the idea of personified subway stations helping passengers through their worries, but did they really have to look like a bunch of ugly bishies with ridiculous hairstyles? Most of the time they’re acting like stereotypes as well, especially that yellow-haired guy was obnoxious. Especially the scenes in which they talk to each other are cringe-worthy. Nevertheless, when push comes to shove it does manage to pull off a nice down-to-earth story for the troubled passengers. If the future episodes can focus more on those passengers and less on the bishies, we could have something very interesting here.
OP: Cheesy J-rock. Move on.
ED: Slightly better, but still generic J-rock
Potential: 50%

Natsu no Arashi! Akinai-Chuu

Short Synopsis: Our lead character is surrounded by lots of cute girls.
Like White Album, I’ve been heavily debating whether or not to blog the second season of Natsu no Arashi. Sure, the first season was very good, but this is Shinbo, after all. No matter how good the source material, I have this feeling that he’s going to take its style to extremes again while forgetting what’s really important. And really, it didn’t help that this episode was probably the worst of the entire series. It was a beach-episode, but the thing is that it just wasn’t funny. The whole episode was just a string of random fanservice-jokes, and lacked the wit or subtlety from the first season. Among the rest of the jokes were also lots of recycled ones (the creators are still going on about Hajime vs Jun, the salmon-thing returned yet again and the creators were even desperate enough to recycle a joke from Sayonara Zetsubou-Sensei and the Samurai-Jokes from Pani Poni Dash!). Sure, this series might pick back up, but this episode just showed too many signs that the creativity of Shinbo has run out, and I don’t want to blog this series just for the sake of finding out whether I’m right or not in this. Also, why the heck are the creators hinting at a romance between Jun and Hajime?!
OP: Like expected from Shaft, at least it has a pretty good OP. Creative visuals and nice music.
Potential: 30%

Posted on 29 June 2009 with categories: Anime Reviews, Natsu no Arashi



After all of the shows that he’s been directing and will be directing in 2009, it’s safe to say that Akiyuki Shinbo has been the most prolific director of the past decade: I can’t think of anyone who directed as much series as he did, especially in the past five years. Natsu no Arashi started out as one of the many dark horses of the past Spring Season. At first sight it looked to be full of your usual shounen clichés and all, but it turned into a very interesting and engaging series.

At first sight it’s easy to label Natsu no Arashi as one of those moe comedies around high-school girls, but that’s only half of the series. The other half is a surprisingly serious and deep storyline about time travel, World War II and people who are deeply affected by the past. For once in one of Shinbo’s series, the characters have strong personalities and yet are more than a bunch of paper bags. Hajime may seem like a bit of an oddball here, but his purpose in the series really is to act as the straight man, compared to the issues and stories that the rest of the cast has, and he pulls this off really well as the main character.

On top of that, this series also has a very inspired sense of humour. As this is a series about time-travel, it really makes the most of it by including jokes that can only be shown in this kind of series. This leads to priceless discussions about a rotten fish, among others. It also likes to poke fun at one of its on-going plot threads, in which one of the characters (Jun) is a cross-dresser. A number of absolutely hilarious episodes are centred around all sorts of crazy situations in which she has to try and keep her secret and pretend to be a guy.

Overall, this series is really well balanced, with the serious and silly episodes alternating so that the end result is a very varied series that grabs the best of both. The only downsides are the first and last episode. The first episode really gives a wrong image of what the series is going to be about, while the last is mostly a rehash of jokes (something that the other episodes managed to avoid so well), and carries Shaft’s style a bit too far. nevertheless, if you’re looking for a series that has both light and dark parts with engaging characters, then this is a show you should check out.

Storytelling: 8/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 8/10
Posted on with categories: Natsu no Arashi



Ah, so there’s going to be a second season this fall. That’s a good thing, because this episode pretty much was the weakest episode of this show so far. Especially the first half was just a rehash of already used jokes with all of the characters somehow dressed in swimwear (including Jun in clothing that would obviously reveal her gender to Hajime, yet nobody noticed), while the second half had some new and funny material, it also seemed to be trying too hard.

However, I am also very wary of the “Curse of the Shaft Sequel”. I KNOW Shinbo, and I’m just certain that he’s going to carry this show’s style way beyonds its limits, making it lose its substance like how Zoku Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei and a tale of melodies were ruined. Especially this episode was a very bad sign, if every episode of he second season is going to end up like that. That’s why I’m not going to guarantee that I’m going to blog season 2 as well. It’s all going to depend on how awesome the rest of the upcoming Fall Season is going to be.

And don’t get me wrong, barring this episode, I really loved Natsu no Arashi. I just feel that it would have been better if everything was wrapped up in just these thirteen episodes. The past two episodes would have been much better if they took the stories from the manga that explained why the ghosts came back, and the part where Jun finally comes out of her shell, and combine those into an anime-original conclusion.

Rating: (Enjoyable)
Enjoyable to watch, but mostly just a rehash of previous jokes with some really un-subtle references to other shows.

Posted on 22 June 2009 with categories: Natsu no Arashi



If you consider this episode as a regular episode, it rocked. It closed off the Yayoi and Kanako arc really nicely: in the end all the conflict came from a simple misunderstanding: the two of them simply didn’t know that they can remain in existence as long as they remain close to a person from the current age, and so they decided to steal Arashi’s existence as a means to keep existing. It then proceeds with a little more Jun-jokes when one of her friends protects her secret by claiming to be her girlfriend, and the rest of the episode develops HajimeXArashi by bringing a bit of tension in their relationship by introducing a guy who turns out to have been saved by a future Arashi in the past. All in all, a pretty good episode.

However, this was supposed to be the semi-final episode, and there was no hint of a conclusion in it, or even a build-up for that conclusion, meaning that either the creators are going to stuff the entire conclusion into just one episode, or simply going to end the show by ending with just another manga-chapter without concluding anything. It’s such a shame, really. This would have been a perfect opportunity for the creators to go with an anime-original ending. I know that Shinbo can do it if he wants to, but to do it all in just one episode is really going to push it.

But ah well, who knows whether or not it’s going to turn out awesome or not. Who knows, Shinbo is so unpredictable that he might actually pull it off. In any case, this episode was heaps of fun as usual, and that ending is going to have to be really bad if it wants to completely ruin this series.

Rating: * (Good)
Not the most perfect semi-final episode, but standalone it rocked.

Posted on 15 June 2009 with categories: Natsu no Arashi



I’m really glad that I ended up picking this show back up, because boy, was this episode awesome! For this episode, I feared a bit for Kanako and Yayoi’s lack of airtime, but this episode worked out really well. This episode was full of nice and clever touches. When I watched Tsukuyomi Moonphase about half a year ago, I really was tired Shinbo’s style, and the subsequent Shaft-series of a tale of Melodies and Maria Holic only made this worse for me. But I really have to say, that with Natsu no Arashi, I’m back to being a Shinbo-fan. Of course, I still believe that the third season of Sayonara Zetsubou-Sensei is going to suck unless proven otherwise, but I’m also pretty much looking forward to Bakemonogatari.

Anyway, in this episode we really got the chance to get to know some of the characters better. Since Hajime never got to meet the original Arashi, he of course had to use the chance to check up on her. It’s also a nice touch to see before whatever horrible happened to the foursome, they really were trying to live their normal lives as much as possible: Arashi and Kaaja were still trying to cheer up the mood by singing together, and Kanako was simply in the middle of a fight with Yayoi at the time Hajime and her Yayoi’s ghost version popped up.

It really was cute to see that Kanako, who was built up as such an evil-looking character in the past two episodes, was suddenly portrayed as a shy young school girl who regretted having fought with her best friend. I loved how she got all embarrassed when Hajime called out her name at the performance, in order to get her to come in.

What I also loved about this episode is that the creators put some real thought in what the ghost Kanako must have been doing in the meantime. It’s just too easy to make her stand in one place without having her do anything, but even though we never actually saw her through most of this episode, by the time we saw her again we knew exactly that she had been frantically searching for a way to get Yayoi back, and eventually just jumped on Hideo to get a contract with him. Hideo’s reaction to this was of course priceless.

This episode also nicely used a paradox in order to explain why Arashi chose Hajime of all people: because she saw Hajime when she was still alive, he must have seemed like the perfect guy to become friends with when she returned as a ghost. Speaking of paradoxes: why were there pictures of Hajime hanging in the old mansion of Yayoi?

Okay, so now there are two episodes left, and I really wonder what the creators have planned for that ending. In any case, we can expect to see the event that brought everyone back as ghosts. The past few episodes have shown that this story is planned out really well, but endings and finales are always something different, and even the best shows can trip over these unfinished endings. I’m curious to see whether this show can pull it off.
Rating: *** (Awesome)
Clever, subtle and yet packs one hell of a punch as it closes off the Yayoi and Kanako arc.

Posted on 8 June 2009 with categories: Natsu no Arashi



Well, so my assumption the last episode was indeed wrong: Kanako was simply one of Arashi and Kaja’s classmates. In this episode, Hajime goes to stalk them inside their house (with a little help from Hideo), after which Yayoi tells him about who the two of them are. I’m not really that much of a fan of the fact that they seemed to be the only cute girls in their entire school, but then again just about every anime suffers from this, and the rest of this episode really was as top-notch as ever.

For as little time that has been devoted to her, I quite like Kanako as a villain. She’s got this evil look on her, she is sure what she wants and makes sure that she gets it. I’m curious to see whether the creators can pull off her defeat well. She has deeply rooted motivations for her actions, so it’s going to be a shame if she’s just going to end up being talked out of her actions.

Speaking of Shinbo, I am getting worried about one thing here. In the next season he’s supposed to come with Bakemonogatari, and while I don’t know and don’t want to know what it’s going to be about, there seems to be a lot of hype around it, and how this can be one of his best series so far. But at the same time he also has a third season of Sayonara Zetsubou-Sensei slated for the same series, right after a spring-season in which he churned out Natsu no Arashi, which was right after the winter-season in which he had Maria Holic, and don’t forget that Pani Poni Dash OVA that popped up about a month ago. I mean, is it me or doesn’t this just look like overkill? How many series can one guy direct before being completely burnt out? There’s no doubt that Zetsubou-Sensei is going to be rushed as hell, but it’s going to be a shame if Bakemonogatari would also end up suffering from this.

In any case, I’m at least glad that Natsu no Arashi turned out so well. Now if it only can give a nice conclusion I’m really going to be happy.
Rating: ** (Excellent)
This episode again shows that this show rocks when it wants to get serious.

Posted on 1 June 2009 with categories: Natsu no Arashi



I must say that my big fear for this series would be its conclusion. This show has already proven that it’s good, but even good shows have a hard time with their conclusions (take Kurenai for example). This is a series about the past, and how it can influence the present, but that black-haired woman was really being set up as your stereotypical evil villain. This episode only fueled my suspicions when they portrayed her even more like some overused bad guy who was planning to kidnap Arashi and use her powers in order to help a loved one of her. Yawn. Been there, done that, and it completely doesn’t fit in with the rest of the themes.

Or so I thought…

The end of this episode really pleasantly surprised me.I never imagined that that woman would actually be a grown up version of Arashi! Now this really puts things into a different perspective that’s totally in line with what the rest of the series has built up for. Especially this episode spent a lot of time talking about time paradoxes, which is exactly what happened at the end of this episode. It was some clever foreshadowing that at the same time you really recognize unless you’ve seen the rest of the episode. Especially since they used a rotten fish as example.

So yeah, this episode rocked. There was a lot of talking in it, but it did exactly what it was supposed to: delve into the details of time travelling. This really allows the series to go in-depth into its setting, rather than compared to series with relatively little dialogue. This is also why I’m such a big fan of series with lots and lots of dialogue. On top of that, we also got some very nice development between Arashi and Hajime, which is always welcome. That hug/kiss scene worked really well.

I’m also intrigued by that scar on the bar table. It just keeps returning over and over, and there’s always someone who’s trying to clean it. The obvious meaning is symbolism: no matter how hard you try, that past ain’t gonna erase itself. And yet I have a feeling that there’s more to it. I have no bloody idea how the creators are going to do it, but something is telling me that the origin of that scar is going to be central to the plot.

Rating: ** (Excellent)
Great HajimexArashi chemistry, nice surprises, the beginning of the end that is promising to be very exciting.

Posted on 25 May 2009 with categories: Natsu no Arashi



Well, there you have it: another one of those advantages of having a series directed by Shinbo is that he can be really funny when he wants to. Especially with this series, which is just going to last for 13 episodes, has no chance whatsoever of milking itself out, you can be sure that the comedy is going to be really funny, and that’s exactly the case for this episode. I laughed really hard, and I loved how this episode used Jun’s character to draw out every last bit of comedic potential out of her.

Jun really has been a constant source of laughs, and because of this series’ good development it has yet to feel dull at all, and this episode was probably the funniest episode I watched this season. The idea of switching Jun and Hajime’s bodies was pure comedic gold. I especially loved how Hajime believed that he dropped his balls somewhere.

There’s nothing much else to say with such an episode of course, apart from how I’m pleased to see that the creators are also making good use of the running-joke about salt. This really is the kind of episode you need to watch for yourself.

Rating: *** (Awesome)
The funniest episode I have seen this spring season. With a length > 20 minutes in any case.

Posted on 18 May 2009 with categories: Natsu no Arashi



What started out as a seemingly silly episode in which Hajime and Arashi break the metal bird on top of the cafeteria and muscle guy being ordered to buy women’s underwear, it gradually turned out to be an episode that added even more depth to Kaja and Jun’s characters. I really must say that Jun is one of the most convincing cross-dressers out there, because for once she has a very solid reason to act as a boy, compared to most of the other cross-dressers, who seem to be only there for fan-service.

In this episode you could really see that she feels insecure about regular girls: she doesn’t like their style and fears that she might end up as the same. While the source of it is still unknown, but it seems to be strong enough for her have to endure the other side of the coin: Hajime’s abuse. It’s also strange that Jun’s classmates didn’t feel like stereotypes at all.

And at the same time we learn that Kaja is very uncomfortable among men, due to the way she was raised in her time. She’s probably fine with Hajime because he only has eyes for Arashi, but when those students showed up she really came into a situation she never was in before. The episode then continues as she tells how she believes that she appeared in this time for no reason, and that they’re just there to relive their summer. Jun then however, realizes that they’re both just thinking too much of others, and refuse to think about themselves. Basically, what Hajime and Arashi have been doing all along.

There also was a lot of building up in this episode. We now know that Arashi and Kaja died on the same day. It probably was because of a bombing, but I doubt whether it was that simple. We also know now why Kaja came back, but what about Arashi? We have yet to see what her regrets are, and she’s very good in hiding this. On top of that, there has to be some sort of role for the muscle-guy, has there?

This series will probably be only thirteen episodes long, since Shinbo seems to have yet another show scheduled for Summer, plus the original manga only seems to have released three volumes so far. If this is true, then we’ve just passed the halfway point of this series, and there are actually lots of ways for the creators to settle this series. Let’s hope that everything can come together.

Rating: ** (Excellent)
Very nice episode for Jun and Kaja and the visuals still are very good.

Posted on 11 May 2009 with categories: Natsu no Arashi



Okay, that’s it. With this, you can consider Valkyria Chronicles dropped and Natsu no Arashi picked back up. Not only was the past episode of VC incredibly bad, but the current episode of NnA was also incredibly good. We’re really talking about a wolf in sheep’s clothing here: after the silly first episode, did anyone expect that five episodes later, we’d see the characters in the midst of a sea of fire after a bombing in the second world war? Thought so.

And seriously, before this season started I really didn’t expect that I’d like the next series by Shinbo this much. After Zoku Sayonara Zetsubou-Sensei, Maria Holic and watching Tsukuyomi Moon Phase, I really was through with the guy, and especially that announcement of him trying to regurgitate yet another season of Sayonara Zetsubou-Sensei, which really hit its expiration date long ago made me worried. And yet here he comes, picks out a great manga and adapts it really well so far. The storyline has been getting really interesting in its focus of past vs present, and the filler episodes are a lot of fun to watch (like last episode’s cross-dressing bit).

This episode was much more serious, in which we for the first time see Jun and Kaja go back in time for the first time (making interesting use of the fact that Jun’s actually a girl), and we turn to the place in which she herself grew up, and we get to know her first love right before he died in a bombing. Since Kaja is less confident than Arashi, a large par of this episode is spent on her wondering whether or not to change history.

And poor Jun gets dragged around all the way, but we really get more insight into ‘her’ character in this episode as well as she sees Kaja struggle with her past love. I also like the reason she has for cross-dressing, how she holds some sort of grudge against the average female.

Rating: ** (Excellent)
Wonderful art style, a really dark and deep episode for such a seemingly innocent series.

CHANGE USERNAME
Lenlo
Havnt had the chance to watch it yet, but Reflection apparently looks like a comic book but has weird fight scenes? Ill get that write up tomorrow once I watch it tonight.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*hear
Jesus Christ what happened to my spelling
AidanAK47
That's one of the things that mainly turned me off. The battle system is essentially button mashing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The regular complaint I here from Tales of naysayers is a dislike of the battle mechanics/system.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I avoided the anime adaptations of the tales games mostly because I assumed they presumed previous knowledge of the games. I actually only saw Phantasia due to having been familiar with the games story when I was younger.
HelghastKillzone
No Re:Creators this week. I get a week off which is good since I'm stuck on an army base.
AidanAK47
@K-Off, A lot of people say Vesperia is their favorite as well. I only have played Abyss so far and was really not impressed with it.
K-Off
@Kaiser Damn, Detective Conan has a long way to go then.
K-Off
Phantasia was my first Tales game (and its anime is the best amongst anything after) but Symphonia really did take it to another level. In general I think most fans will agree with Symphonia, Abyss, and Xillia in their favorites.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I believe Kochikame is the longest running manga of all time 1,960 chapters, 200 volumes, actually does have a record.
K-Off
@Aidan I remember you saying how it's funny that no two fans of Tales will have the same favorite title. But that's definitely because Tales has changed very little over the years, and they've always been solid games, and so for most fans they'll remember the first title they played.
K-Off
@Vonter With you there. The art direction in Tales hasn't been really that exciting since Xillia, and as a long time fan of the series I finally got sick of the gameplay after Vesperia.
K-Off
Jeez, detective Conan is reaching its 1000th chapter. Pretty sure it's a milestone for some Guinness record.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*Embarassing
**Here
Kaiser-Eoghan
I also agree about complaints made about the mumbled dialogue when it does occur.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think thin red line is a good thing to bring up hear as throughout much of Dunkirk I was thinking about how much more Mallick's film did for me, how I should have been re-watching that instead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Yet at the same time I couldn't connect with it, it became repetitive, disjointed and the shots/Zimmer score towards the end were embaeassing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There were definitely aspects to praise, to be fair there is no shortage of action, it eschews exposition and tries to visually immerse the viewer to make them feel as if they are present.
Lenlo
Im ready. Reflection comes on tomorrow, so heres hopin its worth it
Anonymous1279803
it was trash. just british propaganda
Vonter
I finished Tales of Berseria. And I'm conflicted. I really liked the story and the characters, essentially a Tales of were the story is told form the perspective of the villains. I also saw the episodes Ufotable made of the beginning of the game, and I want moar. It's was a waste as game, considering the archaic and dull game design. It mainly came up to buying time in regards to things to play.
KTravlos
I also watched it. I thought it was a great war film. Very intense and unrelenting, but still at points the images reminded me of Thin Red Line. My only quip was the end. The film did a great job in getting me to feel the hopelessness the soldiers felt. So great that the attempt at making a "happy" end was forced and fell flat. Beyond that I liked it.
Anonymous1279184
I already lost interest when I saw Inception which I didn't really like. My favorite Nolan movie will always be Memento.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Eh, saw Dunkirk, I think at this point I'm done with giving Nolan any more chances, this like his other works, I can appreciate them to some extent but come away honestly not giving a damn.
SuperMario
and this week's Sakura Quest is damn great as well... This backstory of Chitose and Kadota rocks
SuperMario
Just watching the 2nd episode of Gamers, It was actually pretty good. I can't believe they fleshing out that annoying hot guy into such a relatable guy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I recall the extent of my interest in Linkin park in my early teens was strictly the breaking the habit video and that was it.
SuperMario
The frontman of Linkin Park commited suicide by hanging himself... sad news. Never been his fan but I feel sad nonetheless
AidanAK47
Actually forgot with all the impressions and whatnot but I do believe we said we would review the Castlevania Netflix series. Now that everything has calmed down I will see if I can do a write up next week.
AidanAK47
I was busy trying to discern whether the story had any point besides "Life is shit"
Kaiser-Eoghan
Again, while I enjoyed punpun, the excessive internal narration, when marathoned, I had to take a break.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Come to think of it, I don't even have a phone that does that, haven't bought a new one since 2004.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah, you see I could never force myself to browse/type/use the internet on a phone, too used to using a desktop exclusively for that.
AidanAK47
Oh bloody hell. Stupid phone autocorrect. Yeah I meant Punpun.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Read Freesia.
Kaiser-Eoghan
umi no onnanoko is probably the exact thing ninjarealist would be interested in.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*oyasumi punpun
I found it alot more accessible than nijigahara holograph. deded-demon-destruction while enjoyable, is beneath him. Solanin is probably his easiest work.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I assume you man oyasui punpun. Its been about five years since I read in, the final couple of volumes stay in my mind the most, all the stuff with him, the girl and his uncle also, I love Asano Inios art and the surreal elements but I got lost/bored somewhere in the middle and most of the other side characters and the cult thing I didn't really care about.
AidanAK47
Finished reading Goodnight Pumping. Really not sure on what to think of it. The story kept me reading but it just felt really empty.
Anonymous1276500
There are 2 Nyaa's now. This one is considered the 'real' one: https://nyaa.si
Kaiser-Eoghan
Looks like anirena is down for me. Although it looks like nyaa went back up as this: https://nyaa.pantsu.cat/
SuperMario
Aidan: Fate/Apocrypha, Made in Abyss, Kakegurui
Mario: Princess Principal, 18if, Youkoso
Lenlo: Touken Ranbu, The Reflection
Wooper: Ballroom, Shoukoku no Altair
Helghast: Re:Creators
SuperMario
Note: I'm deciding to take Classroom of the Elite as my third show to cover. So, for this season we are covering 11 shows.
Vonter
Just to end, it kind of shows than even if a story is predictable on where it is going. Characters can make up for that, if they're funny, interesting, and perhaps not agreeing all the time and having different agendas and points of view despite all sharing the same boat.
Vonter
Yet as a game Tales hasn't felt deep since Symphonia, (at least from the ones I've played). I'm wondering if it'll leave me wanting check the anime of Zestiria, since apparently Berseria is a prequel to that game. And many say the anime is better than the game. (I can see why).
Vonter
I also like the reused Tales beats from Phantasia and Berseria. It those have moments like when Lloyd was exiled and Cless had his village attacked. It has clear antagonists unlike Vesperia, and trying harder than the cartoony villains of Graces.
Vonter
I've been playing Tales of Berseria, and it seems to be the anti Tales of Graces. In which I'm caring about the story and characters, but the gameplay is a drag. This is the first time I've been autoplaying an JRPG. But unlike Gravity Rush 2, I'm not dropping it because I'm liking the interactions of these characters even if it gets, campy, overdramatic, or edgy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I mean I watch anime and films subtitled but sometimes my reading speed can be slow if theres a lot of dialogue.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Eh, I do that sometimes, mostly to check for message updates or on occasion to read reviews of what I am watching or to download more/check downloads.
SuperMario
For instance, I watched Okja yesterday and I had to take 15', 20' minute break in between for snack, surfing webs and playing mobile games...
SuperMario
I watched Fanny and Alexander... don't really remember which version I watched thou. I think it's a TV version since it divides into 4 separate parts
SuperMario
@Kaiser: it just that... my attention span has shortened greatly and I just can't stay focus on movies over an hour mark. In cinema, it's alright since you can't move anywhere but now it's abig task to finish a 2 hour and a half movie for me
Kaiser-Eoghan
And is good enough to keep up the quality for that long.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'll say this, for every medium, to me the length of something isn't so much the issue, if you have a writer good enough to keep something going for ages then the length shouldn't be an issue.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: If something goes over three hours I treat it as a miniseries and watch one hour or two a day.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: lol if you thought thats long, have you seen the extended versions of scenes from a marriage and fanny & alexander by Bergman? I can't wait to get my hands on the tv versions I hear they're completely different.
SuperMario
Okja is pretty entertaining with pointed social commentary. I don't really feel Tilda Swinton's double roles add up much but everything else is great. Bong has never disappointed me
SuperMario
@Kaiser: good luck with Satantango then. I guess now if I watch an 8-hour long film it would take me a whole week to finish it :/
Kaiser-Eoghan
Made in abyss and vatican keep staring at me. Although I'm not chancing them yet or anything else until I hear a bit more.
Kaiser-Eoghan
My once massive film backlog is nearly cleared. I can try watching stuff this season hopefully.
K-Off
Same boat here. For the first time in a long time I spent almost half the day catching up on all of my manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I'll have two weeks leave, I will finally watch Satantango, all eight hours of that film.
AidanAK47
I did a double take when I saw this. One of these things is not like the other.... http://gematsu.com/2017/07/blazblue-cross-tag-battle-announced
SuperMario
Well, finally have a bit of precious free time to watch something else and I have too much things to watch. Castlevania, the final Kizumonogatari movie, live-action Okja and some books planned to read... I guess I'll go with Okja today
Ninja
Looking forward to that Dies review
Lenlo
Yaaay! Time to enjoy your blogging time
AidanAK47
And now we are up to date. Just need to finally get that Dies Irae Review posted.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Then again I'll watch almost every horror film I can, don't even mind the awful acting most have.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Pet cemetary was a guilty pleasure of mine when I was a teenager.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I don't know how I'd feel if I rewatched salems lot, although a positive is that it did have James Mason in it and it was done in that 70s style of slow burn horror that I love.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The IT film has aged horribly and thats one case where I would advocate a remake.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Stand by me was a perftly watchable coming of age film and it surprised me, seeing a non-horror King story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Okay theres one way to settle this =P Lovecraft > all of them ;) I have actually enjoyed some King adaptations even though I know the Shining took liberties , I also enjoyed Carrie and Apt Pupil.
Lenlo
@Kaiser, please. Early King > Richard Matheson > Modern King. Kings early works were good.
Lenlo
@Aidan, its true that Monty was the mind behind the fights. Sad, but I think the other directors are starting to come into their own instead of trying to copy Monty.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But we all know Richard Matheson > King.
Kaiser-Eoghan
He did some collabs with Stephen King I believe.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Like the dead films he's trying to be thematic, although this one is clumsily put together, I kind of like how it hybridizes the 50s with 70s style exploitation, it has its moments.
Kaiser-Eoghan
hmmm the only non Dead trilogy film I've seen by Romero is the Crazies, feels like he's still finding his voice with it.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, Part of the reason is that they started using better animation software. But despite that there was a downgrade in fight chorgraphy when Monty died. Though the story I find is getting better.
AidanAK47
@Kinseryu, I think it's ridiculous to everyone but there are those that choose to ignore it.
@Anon, That's a bit harsh. It is true that his later works never truly panned out but he did pretty much popularise the zombie apoc. Even if Day of the Triffids did it before him.
Lenlo
Every season RWBY gets just a little bit prettier. Rooster Teeth really does have some of the better 3D animation skills out there.
Anonymous1272531
goerge romero was a hack trying desperate to stay relevant.
Kinseryu
Tenshi3P... I thought it was just me that this show was just ridiculous by putting three ten years old girl that knows how to play electrical instruments. They are insulting the people who plays these. But good thing I found this site with your first impression. I laughed and I feel better. Lol.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: he passed away? damn. He was the Father of Zombie genre. So like him or hate him, he was influential to say the least. RIP.
Kaiser_Eoghan
...holy shit George A Romero died? Now I have to watch the rest of his films.
Kaiser_Eoghan
Rei Hiroe is really dicking around with black lagoon lately, he's still releasing wasted chapters, just like re:creators, the most recent chapter of black lagoon was a slog.
Kaiser_Eoghan
Maybe the conversation and lives of others could sort of count as espionage stories to an extent.
Kaiser_Eoghan
If you're interested in spy fiction, Spy who came in from the cold, most wanted man, Smiley's people, deadly affair and tinker tailor soldier spy are your best bet.
SuperMario
@Travlos (regarding yoir earlier comment): yeah, it hit me as well that most of regular readers have been here even longer than myself. So thanks for sticking around mates
SuperMario
@Travlos: playing catch up with both Re:Creators and Virgin Soul yesterday. Agreed that last week's Re:Creators was weak because it focused on the Creators (they're not good) but last episode was on par again. Virgin Soul, I loved that episode that the girls go bacl to Nina's hometown
SuperMario
@anon1272074: I still haven't had the time to watch Pripri yet (probably in few more hours), but you bet I'm looking forward to it
Anonymous1272074
Then again, James Bond does count as a spy. I meant not a realistic one.
Anonymous1272074
Princess Principal 2 was pretty good. Still more James Bond via little girls than spies, but this episode was more about intrigue and stuff than action.
Lenlo
Started catching up with Kakegurui. The OP is the sort of mind games I remember from Mob Psycho. Dunno what that means for the show, but I like it.
KTravlos
Quite happy with this week's RE:Creators. Blitz is cool, Aliceteria looked so scary. It washed out the taste of last week's episode.

Bahamut is going interesting places.
BTW. Speaking of spies from Princess Principal. I watch TURN. That is a good spy show.
KTravlos
I mean you see the use of those heavy revolvers as clubs in westerns. Mythbusters did a experiment, and being hit by one could kill you just fine. But in anime, I do not remember seeing it often
AidanAK47
Homura used Gun-kata in the fight against Mami in Rebellion. Can't think of anyone who exclusively uses it though. After all Gun-Kata is more or less a flashy art that has no real benefit.
Anonymous1270604
amazing!
Vonter
Is Gun Kata the fighting style of Noel Vermillion from BlazBlue? I suppose I'm mainly thinking about how guns are handled in fighting games. Where the shots are mainly concussive. I suppose those are mainly energy blasts.
Lenlo
Ranbu took a step in the right direction I feel. Used the morals of whether or not to change history and it focused in on one of its characters.
Lenlo
Final Fantasy has had some gun swords. Cant think of any with guns in melee though. There are some with gun-kata like cowboy bebop though
Vonter
Just for curiosity, have anyone watched an anime, movie or game that uses a gun as a melee weapon. Or one in which the gun is mainly concussive but still has impact?
Spike
18if ep2 was a bit wacky... main character seems to be off his rocker.
AidanAK47
Alright. Time to finally play catch up with those series I need to blog.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But at the same time acknowledging love for creativity is more important in the end than making a profit.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think I was using death of artist/deceased artist as a term to suggest peoples careers in the area are too often killed before they get a chance.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Moreso also to save the guy the embarrassment of misinterpreting it so awkwardly.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Puran: Nothing too extreme , moreso that the piece itself feels inappropriate/tainted to have up/leave around/submit. Ended up taking it down out of taste.
Puran
Did that change how you feel about your writing? I had a somewhat similar experience, where something I was writing was similar to a real situation some I knew was going through. After I found out I stopped writing it. Not sure why.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wasn't all that close to either of them much but yeah, weird coincidence.
Kaiser-Eoghan
He thought I already knew the guy was dead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*earlier
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its all okay now...but fuck that was was awkward.
Kaiser-Eoghan
....Oh jesus christ...oh christ this is a creepy creepy coincidence...I showed an acquaintance a bit of writing I did early, it mentions death of an artist, thing is I was writing something based on a conversation with my editor friend, turns out said acquaintance's artist friend died (who he knows that I've spoken to in the past) and he thought the piece I showed him was about the dead guy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I believe I began visiting this site in 2008.
As for humanity has declined, I found it bizzare and darkly funny for a while but felt it ran dry in its second half and I kind of fell out of following it.
KTravlos
You know it hit me. I think I have been following this blog for a decade now, perhaps more. Cool that it is still around.
Lenlo
I do agree it had alot more western influence than eastern though
Lenlo
Eh nothing wrong with that I think. Astro boy was very much the same after all
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, I personally saw it as more of a Saturday morning cartoon than an anime.
Lenlo
@Masky, Heroman was a decent giant robot show. It looked and sounded good, though the acting was off in places. Alot of people panned it thinking it was the West invading the east when really it was trying to bridge that gap
SuperWooper
@Kaiser: Hey, Humanity Has Declined was great.
KTravlos
need not be

not

need to be
KTravlos
Masky it was not an issue of writing about politics. It is an issue of writing just about your preferred politics. A good political work need to be politicized if you understand what I mean.
Kaiser-Eoghan
...what the hell tsuki ga kirei was directed by Seiji Kishi? He was actually capable of making a good anime?
Masky
Anyhoo, lol. Haven't mentioned Jitsu wa watashi wa in long time, but I really find it hilarious that its only actually evil character's competence is just "they aren't a idiot" xD As in, they don't even seem that diabolically intelligent, they just don't get wrapped into hijinxs.
Masky
@KTravlos: Well, depends on your views. Some people think artists should have their work speak about politics and world instead of just good stories. I'm kinda neutral about that since while stories about nature of world can be great, most of them don't really teach anyone anything new or change anyone
Masky
Huh, another anime work with Stan Lee being involved? I wonder how well Heroman did
KTravlos
Yup. A mangaka that could had been another Urasaw imho is Kawaguchi Kaiji. I really like his art, and it evokes some of the elements that I love in Urasawa. He also has interesting stories. But I fear he has let his political and ideological prejudices get the better of him. Which is a pity. Definitely a missed chance.
Masky
Did Urasawa do that billy bat manga?
SuperMario
As for Urasawa, I mentioned here before but I read 20th Century Boys few months ago and the manga was a straight out masterpiece. Fillers, yes but they are still in service for the main plot. Although out of his work my favorite's still Monster
AidanAK47
Alright. Only one more. Though the two superhero shows won't air for another week. Seeing as one is reflectiona nd the other is that marvel kids show maybe we shouldn't bother covering them in the impressions.
SuperMario
@Amagi: agree with you on the Friday's anime (well, for me it's technically Saturday) but Kakegurui, Fate and Princess Principal are worth following as well
SuperMario
@Kaiser: if you're still deciding if you should check out the manga or novel then I say novel since it's the novel that was influential, not the manga
Kaiser-Eoghan
So based on that fantasy itch I had thought about Altair, but hesitated because it was labeled as a shounen action show.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There was a time where I was hugely into the shoujo fantasy/historical thing. I've actually been thinking of out of curiousity looking into some old obscure ovas such as Books of Y and Crystania.
Amagi
Man as much as I love the Friday's anime this time, and whenever Altair airs, but the rest of the working-week is weak as hell. At least now I will finally have more time for games, VNs and creative stuff I guess.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It was kind of nice to hear an announcer coming in before Genocidal organ started, mentioning that for a few months their cinema will be playing anime and Japanese films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Surprised to see an anime reference Kafka and Katyn.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have not yet checked out empire of corpses.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Now, I'll have to consider the manga or the novel as I heard some of the philosophical stuff got chopped. This was however a more successful and accessible film for me than Harmony.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Manglobe was always a bit mediocre when it came to animation and voice actor direction, but this wasn’t a bad film for them to go out on.
It lives up to its name, it gets quite visceral with the action that’s there, if you don’t like seeing child soldiers getting slaughtered there’s your warning, but I appreciated getting this kind of violence I want to see more of again in anime/manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I just got back from my local arthouse cinema, from watching a special screening of that anime film, Genocidal organ, this is the sort of thing where you do wish that it had more time to explore its thematics but they at least offer a good enough flavouring to a solid man on a mission scifi thriller.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Just to state I don't hate Urasawa's work, rather I find it sort of difficult , I could say the same about Asano Inio regarding oyasumi punpun.
KTravlos
Urasawa is supposed to be working on Master Keaton Remastered. But it seems to be on hiatus. A pity because I loved Master Keaton (I adore Monster)-in general I love this person's work.
Amagi
20thCB would be my favorite Urasawa I think but I can't imagine it as an adaption. Kinda want to know what Urasawa will do next. He already announced that he's working on a new series months ago.
Amagi
I am really looking forward to the Pluto anime. I wanted this one the most, there is a serious lack of good sci-fi anime out there.
Kaiser-Eoghan
...billy bat is....scattered and directionaless fro what I read but shows interesting historical scenarios.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Pluto was reasonably short, so this wasn't much of a problem.
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