Posted on 22 March 2007 with categories: Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror~, Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, Random Posts

Yes! The airdate for Higurashi 2 finally has been announced. The second season is coming in July. The twenty-second, if I’m not mistaken. Now all that’s left is to hope that all of the arcs will be animated, and not just the seventh and the eighth one.

Still, that’s not nearly as interesting as some information I found while checking out Moonphase. I’m really not sure about the details, but an upcoming anime (also scheduled for the upcoming summer) called Mononoke strangely has a picture of the medicine seller from Ayakashi ~ Japanese Classic Horror on its website, and it also mentions Ayakashi once.

Oh, I’m so hoping that this is some kind of sequel or similar story of Bake Neko. If it actually is, then we’ve got ourselves a serious contender for the “best anime of 2007”. Bake Neko already was one of the best short stories I’ve ever seen, but it’s going to be even better seeing an entire anime dedicated to this concept.

Posted on 1 May 2006 with categories: Anime Reviews, Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror~



Ayakashi ~ Japanese Classic Horror is divided in three individual stories. Each of them stands alone and has nothing to do with the other two. They also share a totally different art style, atmosphere, motives and characters for each of these tales.

Ayakashi begins with the story called Yotsuya Kaidan. The first episode is horrible, it starts just so boring, and keeps this on until the end of it. But then again, that was easily the worst episode of Ayakashi. The good part starts at the second episode, when some great deaths come past the screen, ending at the fourth episode with a satisfying climax. The art style is really old-fashoned, though it remains ugly. Though I guess that that was meant to be that way, as the theme of this story is ugly as well. It’s about the evil that humans can accomplish, and these humans eventually get punished. The characters are all horrible bastards, with a few exception, which only makes it more enjoyable to watch when these characters go berserk. Still, even though it was an enjoyable tale, the story itself is mostly one-layered, with a small exception in the second and third episode.

Then comes the tale Ten Shu Mono Gatari, and if it wasn’t for the fact that they share both the name Ayakashi, I would’ve been unable to identify it with Yotsuya Kaidan. Ten Shu Mono Gatari is suddenly a love story, the total opposite of its predecessor. The Horror-part of Ayakashi is also nowhere to be found in this story, it’s just a normal human and a supernatural being falling in love with each other. The art looks really nice this time, especially when compared to Yotsuya Kaidan. The first three episodes build up perfectly, and end into a very satisfying climax. Though, I have to say that Yotsuya Kaidan is the better one of these two, as it featured some memorable scenes, and it has chaos included which Ten Shu Mono Gatari misses.

Then the third story, Bake Neko, comes. And without a doubt it’s the highlight of the series. The art turns into something really unique, I can only say that I loved it, though it takes some time getting used to. The Horror-part is finally clearly distinctable, and the entire three episodes it consists of turn into an amazing roller-coaster ride with a couple of amazing quiet moments. The characters are each wonderful, and I haven’t even began about the story, which was truly one of the best ones I’ve yet to see.

Overall, I’m recommending Ayakashi ~ Japanese Classic Horror. Especially to the ones who love great deaths, though the fans of love-stories will also be satisfied, and even if you’re not one of these people, just give this series a chance. The first episode is what turned most people off, though it you manage to survive that one, you get treated to some brilliant scenes. You can also just skip the first eight episodes, and immediately turn to Bake Neko if you wish, as each of the stories have no relationships with each other.

Yotsuya Kaidan Rating: 85/100
Ten Shu Mono Gatari Rating: 81/100
Bake Neko Rating: 94/100
Final Rating: 87/100

Posted on 30 April 2006 with categories: Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror~



Whoa… that was just incredible… I expected the last episode to be of the same scale of the second one, but the way it turned out, I never saw coming. Bake Neko definatly has earned itself a spot on my list of most memorable stories. I’m encouraging everyone to at least take a look at it. You don’t nessecarily have to see episode 1-8 in order to enjoy Bake Neko, Ayakashi is just a combination of three individual stories which have nothing to do with each other.

This episode consists out of two parts: the Makoto being found out, and the Kotowari being found out. My favourite moment is when we get to see our first glimpse of the Kotowari. You SO DO NOT see that coming! I like the way that we’re completely kept oblivious about it until that moment, then everything suddenly becomes clear. You’ll understand when you see it.

Overall, Bake Neko was just total awesomeness. Starting from begin to end, this is a story that’s just totally incredible. I’ll probably have the review up tomorrow. It’s a bit too late for that now.

Posted on with categories: Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror~



Okay, now I know what happened to the “horror”-part of Ayakashi ~ Japanese Classic Horror: they saved all of it for the last two episodes (yes, for some reason, Bake Neko consists of three episodes, instead of the usual four). For one of the first times ever, an anime managed to actually scare me. Not much, but still… Needless to say that I absolutely loved this episode.

I would try to give a summary of this episode, but I feel like I won’t be able to. So many different things happened all at once, this was just a roller-coaster ride from one scene to another. If the third episode doesn’t disappoint, then Bake Neko will easily be the best out of the three stories presented in Ayakashi.

Another thing I loved is the attention paid to exorcism. Our medicine seller uses finally a bit more than just the basics in order to get rid of this demon. The line of salt, the flying scales that would tell the demon’s location, the paper seals which would show signs whenever Bake Neko was near it, it all made sense once you saw it in action. The dialogue also was a major plus of this episode, ranging from the characters going berserk to the bickering between the bodyguard and the medicine seller and from the desperate characters to the calm characters. Speaking of characters, these also were great. Each of them seems to be unique in some way, and for some reason, all are interesting to watch, especially the uncle freaked me out, as he seemed to be extremely happy when the demon arrived, in a scary way.

The artwork, the more I look at it, the more I actually like it. It’s really something different, for both the characters as the background.

Posted on 25 April 2006 with categories: Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror~



Today, we start with the third and last part of Ayakashi: Bake Neko (I’m really forcing myself not to misread it as Baka Neko). And again, it feels like we’re in a total different anime. The funny thing is, that the impact is even bigger than with Ten Shu Mono Gatari. And again, Bake Neko has some unique features. Yotsuya Kaidan had the incredible murders, Ten Shu Mono Gatari had its great love story. Bake Neko, however, is just crazy. And that has to say something, especially when compared to Yotsuya Kaidan.

The first thing that comes to the eye is the once more changed character art. Yotsuya Kaidan had ugly characters. Ten Shu Mono Gatari had elegant-looking characters. Bake Neko has hilarious looking characters. Especially the minor characters just look like they had to suffer from the horrors of overbudgetting, ending up with a continuously idiotic look.

That’s not all. Also the dialogue just screams chaos. While Yotsuya Kaidan’s dialogue was based on history, Ten Shu Mono Gatari tried to be as romantic as possible, Bake Neko just uses fast-paced dialogue combined with characters being weird, and combines it to something that actually ends up pretty enjoyable.

Anyway, about the story of Bake Neko: I like it. I really like it. This might be the best of the three. We have this demon, who’s busy assaulting a rich family, consisting of a grandfather, a father, a mother, a daughter, an uncle, two or three bodyguards and a bunch of servants. He already killed the daughter and one of the servants, and if it weren’t for a medicine seller who happens to know exorcism, the entire house would have been demolished.

In order for the medicine seller to be able to kill the demon, three things must be known: Katachi, Makoto and Kotowari: the form the demon takes, what is really going on, and the events that made the demon act the way he did. Katachi is immediately clear: this is a case of Bake Neko (hence the title). The merchant needs the members of the house in order to be able to determine Makoto, after which the episode ends. My guess is that the rest of the episodes will deal with the merchant figuring out what happened, accompanied by a couple of nice deaths. I also like the way that especially the uncle seems to be hiding something, though my favourite character still is the assistant bodyguard. He’s just so ignorant.

Posted on 22 April 2006 with categories: Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror~



As expected, Ten Shu Mono Gatari ends just as morbid as Yotsuya Kaidan. While the latter ended a bit too predictable, with the rats and all, the former delivers a much better and satisfying ending. The deaths actually make sense this time. We start with Zusho-no-Suke and Tomi Hime standing in the highest room of the castle, and watching the local army stand at the gates. Tomi Hime wants to defend the castle, and the old woman shows her civil side.

What then starts is a horrible bloodbath between the minor forgotten gods and the local army. The local army may have 1000 people at its command, the forgotten gods remain forgotten gods, who have the ability to take out ten men at a time. I guess I don’t have to say that they gladly make use of this. But then again, the forgotten gods have weakened. Not as in, they can only cast a few skills before their MP is up, but as in the fact that once they get hit, they’re dead, just like any other human. They still don’t know how to mask this weakness, so eventually every forgotten god except Tomi Hime ends up killed. It was great to see that the creators showed the scenes from both parties point of view. It gives so much more backgrounds than when just one side is put in the spotlights.

Tomi Hime and Zusho-no-Suke, meanwhile have problems of their own. First, the old woman tries to kill Zusho-no-Suke after all. He gets saved by his ‘wife’, feeling extremely jealous. Then, she finally realizes that Zusho loves Tomi Hime, and not her. She forces him to go with her, and we’re in for a pleasant surprise, as it appears that Zusho has turned into a forgotten god himself, as his face gets a total make-over. In a bad way. By seeing this, the wife runs away. Zusho and Tomi Hime then decide to defend the castle themselves.

When Tomi Hime, however, finds out about the fate of the other residents of the castle, she goes berserk, complete with a number of extra hands and a pair of wings. Every soldier outside gets killed by her, while Susho himself takes care of the soldiers inside the castle. The landlord is the last of the army to perish. It might be a bit morbid and predictable, but I liked the way it was carried out.

Afterwards, when we think that the ending couldn’t have been more obvious, we get to see a great final scene, as the two demons, without much success, try to search for valuable things in the castle, which got burned to the ground during the battle. Then they see three figures flying in the sky. They make some remarks, and leave. I loved this part. Overall, Ten Shu Mono Gatari was a very nice story to see. I still find Yotsuya Kaidan’s craziness better, though. Furthermore, where, exactly, was the ‘horror’ part?

Posted on 17 April 2006 with categories: Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror~



This tale somehow manages to keep getting better and more beautiful by the minute. Okay, the “Horror”-part is still drifting in oblivion, but this certainly is one of the better love stories in anime. All tensions are rising high, and it seems that everything is ready now for a big climax.

We start with the guy, whose name appears to be Zusho-no-Suke (no wonder I couldn’t remember it. I’ll call him Zusho for the time being), and Tomi Hime have a little fun in the human town. Then the old woman finds them, and begs Tomi Hime to return. Once they do, it becomes clear that she has a very good reason to be against Tomi Hime’s feelings. Her love for Zusho caused the Forgotten Gods to weaken. In other words, making them mortal again. Tomi Hime then forces Zusho to leave her alone.

Zusho leaves the castle, and suddenly the other woman comes running up to him. The two end up marrying, though Zusho still thinks of Tomi Hime. When the woman finds out about this, she manages to make the landlord decide to attack the Forgotten God-castle. Of course, with them weakened like that, this will turn out to be quite interesting.

Anyway, Zusho finally can’t hide his feelings anymore, so he abandons the woman and heads back to the castle. In there, they see the torches belonging to the regional army rising. This will make for an awesome climax in the fourth episode. I can hardly wait to see it.

Posted on 2 April 2006 with categories: Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror~



The man (what the heck was his name again? *kicks memory*) gets ordered to return the falcon he lost in the previous episode. If he doesn’t, he gets to perform seppuku. Though I think he would’ve gone back anyway. When he arrives at the castle, he meets up with the two demons, and the three form a truce. It’s interesting that the demons are on the good side for a time. Well then, they enter the castle, and suddenly they got attacked by a couple of forgotten gods. The demons actually help our main character escaping, after which he goes to search for Tomi Hime. He finds her, but before the two can get to know each other, the old woman manages to catch him and knock him out. He finds himself locked up afterwards, only to be freed by Tomi Hime. The two talk for a bit, Tomi Hime shows her background, and they officially end up as a couple. After a wild night, the main character convinces Tomi Hime to run from the castle, and the two run off on a horse. This doesn’t actually please the old woman.

Overall, I like this romance. It’s greatly executed and I can really feel that these characters love each other. There’s just one problem. This show is called “Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror”. Not “Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Love-Stories Involving Supernatural Beings”. I have yet to see any horror in Ten Shu Mono Gatari. Sure, we have some ghosts and demons fighting each other, but I don’t really classify that as horror. It’s more like action. Overall, I think I liked the second episode of Yotsuya Kaidan more than the second episode of Ten Shu Mono Gatari. The former already had some disturbing deaths at this point, though the latter likes to take its time in telling.

Anyway, the two are in love now. It can’t get any better than this. I’m expecting that the horror-part will come in the next episode. After all, something has to happen, doesn’t it?

Posted on 19 March 2006 with categories: Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror~



Aaaah, I’ve been waiting for this to come out. Yotsuya Kaidan is finished, and now we continue with the second story of Ayakashi: Ten Shu Mono Gatari, and it suddenly looks like I’m watching a total different anime. The art style got a total retyle. The faces of the characters suddenly became to look much more like normal anime-style, and the clothes have changed from simple one-colored kimono’s into bright-colored, multi-layered cloths. This changed the overall style to be mush lighter. Overall, I have to say that I like this new art more than the previous. Especially the Forgotten Gods look beautiful (if you exclude the old lady, that is). Yotsuya Kaidan’s art wasn’t bad, or anything, but it just bothered me a bit too many times.

The story’s also so much different from Yotsuya Kaidan, which revolved around nothing but arrogant characters, only doing as they please and killing each other. Ten Shu Mono Gatari, however, seems to be a love-story, between a Forgotten God and a human. Yotsuya Kaidan had just one supernatural being involved (namely Oiwa). Ten Shu Mono Gatari has many, including different species. I have no idea whether this will be as succesful as Yotsuya Kaidan. I guess the only way to find out it to watch the next couple of episodes.

Posted on 20 February 2006 with categories: Ayakashi ~Japanese Classic Horror~


Holy god, this was one paranoid episode. I loved it!

Ayakashi is divided in three parts, each worth of four episodes. This episode featured the ending of the first part. I’m very pleased with it up till now. The first part featured Iemon getting what he deserved. Okay, it was predictable right from episode two, but the storytelling totally made up for it. I don’t know if it’s just me, but it’s fun seeing a sick person like that getting all scared and having illusions. The rats may have been a bit too much, though, although they set for a grand finale.

The second part of the episode told us about the background of the story. This certainly was a nice addition to anyone on par with the Japanese history. When you don’t know a lot about it, it might become boring, though.

CHANGE USERNAME
Kaiser-Eoghan
Still enjoying the sangatsu manga and all the character interactions in this most recent volume.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Quintuplets might be under consideration, dororo is a definite. I don't want to watch revisions , girly airforce or plane thing because of the cgi.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have the first 3 doro episodes downloaded to watch tomorrow, I'll comment on them, I'm giving it a shot because I love Tezuka.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The quintuplets thing is one of those things I would see myself chuckling at for a bit then feeling no obligation to it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The cat thing is probably cute but its too light for me to invest in in the long run.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Regarding this season, I'll be direct, it isn't my thing, I got my fill of Kaguya's manga and all I can out of it, promised neverland, once the escape bit finished just turned into an action series (at least from what I read) lacking a compelling followup hook for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Acca had this odd way of delivering information that made it seem stuff went on between the lines or offscreen, often it worked, sometimes it didn't. Its a show that really picks up after the first couple of episodes and really gets elevated by its revelations, cool setting , art style and opening theme too.
Lenlo
I agree it does that. I think my issue may come with me maybe missing something or just not understanding the series as a whole, and so parts of it were lost on me. I enjoyed the series I would say though
SuperMario
Let me rephrase by saying ACCA ending neatly ties up plot threads for me
Lenlo
I didnt say I didnt like it, just that it wasn't what I expected. It was odd. I think I need time to process it.
SuperMario
@Lenlo: you didn't like ACCA ending? I thought the ending is easily its best part. It's the first few episodes that feel slow for me
Lenlo
Also, just finished ACCA. Man... that was a weird ending. Not sure how I feel about the series, but damn, did it have style.

Also, thanks (?) Wooper.
Lenlo
Lets see... Dororo is good, but I am still lukewarm on it. Kaze Fui is a fantastic carry over from last season. Mob and Neverland of course. Shield Hero, if you want to be part of the latest big craze discussion. Kaguya if you like romance. Ill search some more, but those are off the top of my head.
Anonymous3338351
What are some must-watch anime this season; I'm watching MBP100 and Promised Neverland rn
Vonter
Shield hero looks like it fits with that journey of doing the right thing even though most are against you.
Vonter
You know what it reminds me of. It's kinda like that episode of Malcolm in the Middle. Where the family returns after a trip and find the neighborhood celebrates their absence, since everyone dislikes them. By the end when they make up, all the neighborhood gets bitter with one another because they no longer share a connection of hate with Malcolm's family.
Vonter
Also the undercurrent semblance of looking more like a bad guy or anti hero. Despite him having a good moral compass.
Vonter
SuperMario - I don't felt it was about being defeated or not. I got the feeling it was taking the hit for others. Because since he has high defence he does take the damage, but he does look weary about doing that. And the framework paints him so far more as an underdog than a prodigy.
SuperMario
But does the fact that he’s the greatest defender makes him the one who can’t be defeated? I haven’t watched the latest one though
Vonter
I did like the new episode of Shield Hero. It made me realize there can be stakes in Isekai battles. In both Overlord and Slime I usually space out in the battles because they seem unnecessary outside of animation. It's more interesting if there's a display of wits and using the environment. I also like the protagonist be on the defense and the sidekick as the attacker.
SuperWooper
Here's a "review of one of our own reviewers:"

Lenlo is a pretty cool guy. His taste refreshingly runs the gamut from shounen action series to character-driven period pieces. His use of "Read More" tags and intro paragraphs, though they break the site's house style, give his posts their own signature that his readers likely appreciate. I give Lenlo a 92/100.
SuperWooper
Also, if we're getting pedantic, my post on Kaguya wasn't a "review of one of your own reviewers." It was a review of an anime episode.
SuperWooper
It's "shitty?" Really? None of what we do here is for profit, or for a grade. If I want to alert readers to the fact that I've never read the manga, and choose to do it in a less-than-serious way, I don't think that violates any sacred rule of anime blogging.
Lenlo
@Niello, the technical aspect of Megalo Box is very lacking. Its a character drama with sports, not a sports series with good characters, basically. And yeah the gear makes no sense.
Anonymous3336806
It seems kinda shitty to write a "Proceed with caution!" disclaimer before the review of one of your own reviewers...
Firechick
There are also old school isekai manga such as Red River, From Far Away, Crest of the Royal Family (Which is still going), and a few others.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Animosh: Red River also, but for a while it takes some time to re-gain the addictive quality it has in the beginning. I didn't stick with Yona, it felt like it didn't have any direction on where it was going.
Vonter
Those were different times. And while Isekai, it feels like a different genre. I feel the Isekai of old were also more eastern, given the RPGs of the time were more fairytale like and also several you listed have more of an eastern influence.
Animosh
Yona of the Dawn is also a good example of a series with a politically ambitious female lead, though I wasn't a fan.
Animosh
I forgot how female-oriented early isekai series were. I already mentioned Twelve Kingdoms, but there's also Escaflowne, InuYasha, Rayearth, Fushigi Yugi, Haruka (I've only seen TK though) ... so I guess it's only after the recent revival of the genre that it started targeting men.
Niello
Out of all the sport anime I have watched I think Monkey Turn V is the best so far. Megalobox is pretty good but nothing special imo. I heard that in term of boxing the technical aspect isn't good, though I don't know how true that is. What I personally can't get over is how their gear in reality should just be making people fall over quicker, which shouldn't make the matches more fun.
Niello
I still
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have to stop underestimating these sports shows.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Lenlo is good at convincing me to watch stuff I might not have otherwise watched, I saw ashita no Joe, Kaze and megalobox due to him =)
niello
I should catch up on Kaze, the gap is starting to get quite big.
Lenlo
Im gonna say this every week. How is an anime about running so damn good?
Vonter
I suppose when creating a story one also needs to put some restraint, since as human beings we easily gravitate to certain "tastes."
Vonter
But oh well, I think guys do also have their kinks.
Vonter
@niello - Love might be the hardest emotion to convey. Since even if you put the poses, attitude and the like, the interactions is what sells it. The chemistry as some call it. Sadly in most anime it kinda feels one sided because the male characters are too passive. I like the relation in Shield Hero, but it also underlines the common parental figure girls tend to put.
niello
Later, the author made him accepts the love as a kind of rehab for his bitterness and for the sake of political advantages the girls will gain. So there's this weird atmosphere where the author criticises harem isekai but is writing one himself, although he's certainly trying to make it an unconventional one. At least that's how it is in the web novel. I don't know if they changed it in the LN.
niello
And also to show off. Meanwhile the MC acts like he's not involved because he prioritise the right thing, and also because he's dense toward some of the girls around him (at first) and felt put off by other girls who make bold advances. In essence, he has a harem but he doesn't seek to make one.
niello
@vonter The thing with Shield Hero and harem is that the MC berates how other people who got transported to another world have the idea of forming harems like the LN/manga/anime they know before getting transported. That became the focus of some people instead of what they should be doing like seriously training and preparing for enemy attacks, which they opt for the easy way like it's a game.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - Aside from reincarnating as a baby. Not really. Zettai Karen Children from the author of Ghost Sweeper Mikami, seems like they do. I mean they start very young and later covers have them as teenagers.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Animosh: A slower take on a story is something that has grown on me as I get older.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Animosh: Those scenes in kaze clicked for me this week, but at the same time, that last bit and also the scene in the middle were definately uncharacteristically cheesy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter@Amagi: Mushoku tensei has the lead character grow up throughout it I think?
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think fan interaction by creators, theres something there, listening to fans ideas within reason.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Something that comes to mind here, sometimes i think we the audience might be better at writing the shows than the people doing them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I enjoy explictness but wish it was used less juvenile-ly.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The latest character thats being recurring in my head is a kind of communist or liberation theology soldier that is trying to convert people, while also struggling to keep his highly polarized beliefs in some kind of balance.
SuperMario
@Amagi, tell me about it (having ideas but to lazy to materialize it). Heck, they are mostly lame ideas to begin with
Kaiser-Eoghan
I liked Scums wish .
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its almost always a boring comedy or action show.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or have some kind of anaylsis of why the characters express themselves in certain ways in relationships.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or something depressing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I really really wish more stories involving nudity/sex/fetishes/ecchi/hentai could actually use this kind of thing for a good psychosexual story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I really like it when the conflict has something to do with beliefs or repression aswell.
Amagi
Same here. I mean people are conflicted too, so these characters are actually more relatable. Strangely directors usually think otherwise.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I loved goodbye Lenin, my old German teacher in school was really awesome and took the class to see it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I like conflicted characters.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm also fond of the idea of a villain trying to turn pure hero out of guilt from the past while still longing for his evildoing days and self-hating because of that and also feeling guilty out of enjoying the violence he commits against the villains he's up against. And sees the violence done onto himself as punishment .
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: They just end up as ideas written up rather than stories in my case.
Amagi
@Kaiser: I often feel guilty for being as lazy as I am because I have a lot of ideas and barely do anything with them. I don't even have the "I can't draw it" excuse most other people have. I am just lazy and useless.
Vonter
I've been trying to make a story for quite some time. Is about a special ops agent, that turns into a woman after a failed mission where he lost his friends and comrades. He's on a mission in order to look how to turn back and find redemption for the lost of his friends.
Amagi
OH GOD actually got FGO's Hassan i Sabbah after all with the last few quartz. Suicide prevented, thank you God.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Not a day goes by where I'm not thinking up some wild idea.
Vonter
Kaiser-Eoghan - The best use of incest in a story, is the one you don't see coming, like in King Ooedipus or Old Boy.
Vonter
I think the best case for that story would be using the Yoko Taro method of storytelling. Start by the end and build on how that tragic ending happened. There's a presentation where he explains his method. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OO_d3fwTNPo
Kaiser-Eoghan
I would never ever use incest positively in a story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also, I had a scenario where the hero develops an obsession with the villain, to where killing him is less about personal heroic codes, but curing himself of that obsession.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But the great thing is that the actual thing, relationship never happens.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - That last one just reminds me of erogame about a girl than can't quite get with her crush and relives that same moment several times. Sometimes she reincarnating as man and the crush as a girl. In the end all versions end with rape.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also some of these villains I came up with, they're deaths and rebirths could only occur when it came to settling their specific individual problem. Thus by admitting his/her love for the brother he/she dies.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: I'll add it to my list.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I treated one of my characters like total shit, guy was a girl in his former life, got raped by some alternate version of his brother, got reincarnated a man and as a child killer/abuser, only every time this character committed a crime, they felt they abuse they inflicted on others.
Vonter
Kaiser-Eoghan - Have you read A World I Rule by Tank Guy? That's essentially an isekai about screwing over, what's essentially Eden.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And the true victory and winner is those who lost.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I love the endless cycle of you can't win no matter who you are.
Amagi
@Kaiser: I live for this stuff.
Amagi
@Vonter: I liked that about Tiger and Bunny. I don't want to spoil in case someone is about to watch it. But it contained this element of "something we're looking up to is actually some evil thing/person" and I don't mean the guys they're working for, it was clear from the beginning that those were corrupt.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But at the same time, it isn't like the hero was right either.
Vonter
Amagi - I think in the case of old villains it was caused because those didn't had civilian identities to empathize to the "human".
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also, because I love screwing characters over, after becoming the villain and actually achieving through evil, the perfect good society, even after taking in all the sins of the world and seemingly eliminating the evil inside people, humanity just fucks it all up again and became a monster all for nothing.
Amagi
We also usually don't see the villains having any problems that aren't related to the actual thing they cause. For example losing someone dear to them. Not because heroes killed them or anything, just..so. That's life etc. Making them feel more like persons. Hell even heroes have this problem. Usually when a hero suffers it's caused by the villain. As if the world wasn't more complicated.
Vonter
Also Franken Fran had a very dark and very funny story about a superhero founding out that the organization he's facing wants to conquer the world with charities.
Vonter
Watchmen, Dr. Strangelove, The day the Earth Stood Still kinda put a similar message about needing to be better with each other in order to have a better future.
Amagi
Yes, it's usually too simple. We have a clear hero fraction and a clear fraction of the villain.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*villain
Kaiser-Eoghan
I also like it when the villain isn't actually in co-operation with other bad guys, but theres also a hero, but the hero is marginalized because there are so many differing villaib factions.
Amagi
Even there, in the end it was heavily hinted that people can never bring back gone things. She saw through them and knew they were pretending and that it wasn't real anymore. Think that would happen in the other potential series we came up with too and it cause more character development.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Elementary school up to their mid 30s.
Amagi
Have to think of Goodbye Lenin, kinda. Not exactly that topic but similar. With the mother falling into a coma during GDR time and waking up after the fall of the wall and her family trying to pretent that they're still living in the GDR to not shock her since it could mean that she'd die.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - To what extend watching them grow up? I mean in Dragon Ball we've seen Goku's entire life. In Ashita no Joe we have a big arc before the MC ever gets into an official boxing match. In Rose of Versailles we see a change of ideology over the course of 12 years.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Bad guys idea was to start up so much shit in our world to terrify the people back home.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The guys homeworld was basically one where things we consider evil are good over there.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I remember working with the idea, where a villain brought people back, solely to open the gateway to his homeland through stealing energy from them resulting from psychological turmoil, then broadcasting how terrible humans are back to his homeland, and his people seeing how awful humanity are, then realizing they should stop being bad people.
Amagi
It's why I am always a huge fan of characters (usually, who could have known, villains) who try to resurrect a past decade or something. Like someone trying to build a world or VR space that imitates the 80s because it was the time he grew up in and which he is still missing and want to return back to. Could be the 90s as well or whatever.
Vonter
The paradox with that, is that technically one becomes a tyrant or a monster eventually. Power corrupts the individual. Whose to say those villains didn't start with good intentions?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi; Seeing a characters entire life too, seeing him grow up.
Amagi
@Kaiser: I am often thinking about such a series too. A real coming of age, with the character realising what he had lost or is about to lose, how life changes and him trying to make it stop or escape. Or force the old status quo but realising it isn't possible to maintain.
Amagi
@Vonter: Yeah that's a great compromise. Defeat the villain but maintain his new state, or develope his idea or whatever. Just without the errors the villain made.
Vonter
Oh my, realizing that last one, could make most Isekais more interesting, since there are things those characters can't do by design.
Amagi
And then the MC comes and tells everyone that the old life is good as it is with all its flaws and don't realizes that he is actually lucky enough to not be born into misery or in the middle of some war zone like many others who die and suffer.
Vonter
Villains in the end, take the decisions the hero cannot.
Amagi
It's especially bad when the authors aren't even aware of what they're doing. Like showing that there are characters in the fictional world that get an actual better life with the change the villain brings. Paralysed people being able to move for example or poor outcasts not needing food anymore, in case that the villain forces some VR world and digitalizes people.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Booboo hiss , no revolution is lame. Revolution good, do revolution.
Vonter
Kaiser-Eoghan - Aggretsukko touches a bit on the last two examples.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I still love the idea of people actually benefitting from the terrible things the villain does and actually learning from it and the world becomes a better place because we learned not to repeat the bad guys actions. But the bad guy committed those very bad actions to make us realize that.
Amagi
@Vonter: Yeah I never liked that meta message most stories have that basically boils down to "be happy with everything as it is now and don't try changing it, also, revolutions are evil".
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or where a person attempts to explore becoming something more but ends up just accelerating the breakup/going seperate ways thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
yes vonter, you are giving good examples.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And people growing apart because they've gotten older.
Vonter
@Amagi - Villains have selfish desires, human flaws, and determination. Heroes on those series usually defended the status quo, since that's the only thing they saw as right. And in the meta was to tell the audience how they should behave.
Amagi
Could never get into wimpy characters either. Shy yes, as long as shyness is portrayed seriously and not the typical shy/naive "etooo..ano ne.." harem guy/girl. But I always wondered who can even selfinsert into the typical harem or otome lead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd happily watch a coming of age story which was just about a bunch of guys hanging out, playing videogames, watching films, anime, playing outside and just joking around, very little melodramatic stuff, only on a rare occassion drifting in naturally into the narrative.
Vonter
Ano hana is about reflecting on how the characters grew up.
Amagi
I mean villains are often the oddballs. MCs are too "normal". They're usually the typical guys that maintain the status quo (even if it's flawed), get/want a romantic relation ship and a normal life whereas the villains have ambitions and are often "different" to say it that way. They feel more human to me. Or maybe I am just too weird myself I don't know.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or even a character reflecting on how they've grown up.
Amagi
@Kaiser: As a child it was almost always the villains for me, or villain sidekicks. Probably because writing was more strict back then and there were too many things heroes weren't allowed to think, like or do. Well it's still a problem.
Vonter
Hi Score Girl has a character that reminds me of some aspects I'm not proud of my youth.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or a protaganist realizing all of their past romances were chosen because they thought they had to fit in by having such relationships based on expectations, when really they genuinely don't care about romance.
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan Wasn't 30 centimeters per second like that? Welcome to NHK also explores some aspects of the young adult. Kimi ga Nozomu Eien is a soap opera but with adult characters in need of maturing to independent people.
Kaiser-Eoghan
So i can understand wanting to relate to something in fiction.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also none of these stories ever reflected or related to my adolescence.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I want to see a story about someone who is trying to adjust to their mid 20s or 30s after finally realizing that what they thought would never end (what they were familiar with in their youth) is over.
Anonymous3329534
What are the must-watch anime this season?
Kaiser-Eoghan
In alot of cases naturally the underwhelming leads, male or female are romcom/harem/coming of leads...which leads me to ask, I want an dramedy that I can actually relate to.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or it was one of the villains.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The idea of being a military commander, military leader, spy or an emperor or a more clever character appealed to me more.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Nor superpowered characters for the most part.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've probably said this before, and I don't know if this is just from western upbringing, but I never really self-inserted into wimpy characters because I could never imagine myself like that.
Vonter
All these in regards when a girl is the protagonist.
Vonter
1.- They rarely put interesting love interests. 2.- Few times stories aren't about seeking some internal even selfish desires. 3.- In anime at least females get along very easily while I get the impression it's more complicated IRL. 4.- I identify easily the romanticized power fantasy of men but I can't tell if I've seen that thing of women's.
Vonter
It's a dichotomy. Since I've seen both the worst and some of the best female character in manga and anime. Yet I can't shake the feeling female characters have unwritten restrictions to them.
Amagi
@Vonter: The new Promare trailer got me more interested in this. So it seems like the enemies are actually controlled by humans (that..guy/girl(?)). I also feel like the new blonde character will be a traitor or secret endboss or something.
Amagi
@Vonter: I also always had a problem with female characters, be it anime or whatever. Not because of social reasons or anything, I just found them unrelatable. But they got better over the years, especially in the west. Anime always had some series with ambitious female MCs though, it's just that a lot of anime are too selfinserty and these types prefer the safe route and do otome series.
Vonter
This movie is looking sick. It looks like it's using the same type of cel shading as the latest Guilty Gear game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzFFaLB6fHw
Vonter
I've read manga and webcomics with good or bad art, both can have great or very poor writing.
Vonter
I think scores are incredibly more subjective in terms of comics than other mediums. There is just a vast array of qualities, content, and distribution and exposure also makes for some works fall into obscurity.
Kaiser-Eoghan
or huge praise either.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I decided to read that yuri manga Octave, while I'd give it a higher score than they gave it, a myanimelist reviewer was fairly accurate in saying it really boils down to "another drama" but another review said it was "a quick, short and easy to read manga" I think those are reasonable takes, for better or worse this falls it the fine category and isn't really a huge black mark against it
Vonter
Interesting. I mean it's only a matter of time there are several other Isekai mangas that are either full female or gender bended. Also the Spider Isekai is also coming soon.
Animosh
Always nice to see an author reflect on and work on overcoming his limitations.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There was that recent article where sword art's writer brought up how he wrote his female chracters.
Animosh
Japan has a female prime minister in GITS too, although she's just a supporting character. And now that I think about it, the world of SAO's current arc has a female leader - in fact, her all-consuming ambition is basically her #1 trait.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But that is more of a case of female characters in tougher mode roles.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I suppose if I was making a list of female characters that stood out well for me I would put Motoko (ghost in the shell) or Balsa from Moribito.
Animosh
But I can think of some exceptions. Youjo Senki technically has a female lead, and for an older example there's Twelve Kingdoms. And outside of isekai you have ambitious female characters like Shurei (from Saiunkoku Monogatari) or Maude (from ACCA). But it's true that they're relatively rare.
Animosh
It is true that political ambition is a big part of some isekai though. Overlord is an obvious case, and there's also Log Horizon and the Slime series this season. And the MCs of these series are all males. But then, I suppose political power over others is something that is just more likely to appeal to men, especially in patriarchal Japan.
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