Posted on 30 March 2007 with categories: Anime Reviews, Ghost Hunt


Ghost Hunt is an arc-based anime, focusing on a group of people who exorcise haunted buildings, like mansions, houses and school-buildings. Every arc ranges from one to four episodes, in which some kind of supernatural being has to be taken care of, sometimes resulting in rather bloody scenes. The series clearly did its homework, as it’s able to present the viewer with complex cases, and if offers some quite complex ghosts and exorcism rituals. Interesting premise, but does it deliver?

First, let me say that the best episode of the series is arguably episode five. It’s a masterpiece of fast pacing, tension and great characters. After that, the anime tries, but it never quite manages to reach the same heights of that fifth episode. This is mostly due to the main character of this series: Mai. She’s a normal schoolgirl, who gets recruited for the group in order to handle some of the smaller tasks, like paperwork, fetching coffee, installing cameras, etc.

Mai’s character is quite useless throughout a major part of the anime, apart from some prophetic dreams she has, perhaps. All she does is wander around, talk to people, get scared, and let others do the dangerous work. It’s such a pity, as her character works best when she’s actually in danger and has to fight for herself. But when she keeps getting saved by others, the fun quickly dies. Only two arcs bring an exception to this: the second and the final arc. Because of that, these two arcs showcase the best of the series, and possibly the only arcs which I really enjoyed.

Ghost Hunt also messes up its side-characters a bit. They work good on paperwork, but they aren’t just used to their full extend. In one particular arc, some of them also end up baking cakes, in order to conveniently have them out of the scene for a bit. Attempts are given to give them a bit of background, but apart from one case, these backgrounds are never finished. Speaking of finishing, a lot of questions also are left unanswered after the final episode.

In terms of graphics and music, however, this series shines. Character-designs are crisp and detailed, the use of CG is brilliant and the animation is very acceptable. (Someone also noted that the different characters end up wearing something different for each single day.) The OP and ED are definitely something to remember, some of the monsters and ghosts look very creepy, while the music fits the tension-full series perfectly. And I could go on for a while longer.

About the question whether this anime was worth watching, well, it is. The second arc, the final arc and also the small fifth arc were definitely enjoyable. The other arcs were just decent stories, nothing special.

Posted on with categories: Ghost Hunt

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Short Synopsis: The end of Ghost Hunt. Naru wakes up, his secret is revealed, and the case gets solved.
Good: Matsuzaki was in her element.
Bad: A few important questions remain unanswered.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10

You know, for a Ghost Hunt-episode, this wasn’t such a bad one. I quite enjoyed it, actually. Especially Matsuzaki was great to watch. There were a nice amount of climaxes, all of them were worthwhile to see. I also liked how this episode didn’t go into the “worst case scenario” as well, and chose the most natural solution instead.

Still.

Leaving the last part of a manga you’re based on out never is a good idea. xxxHolic was the only anime so far who left an acceptable result, but the fact remains that Ghost Hunt did leave a number of unanswered questions behind. First of all, Naru’s parents. While it’s nearly obvious that it’s that professor, I’d like to see it actually confirmed.

I was glad to see that Matsuzaki’s story felt the most complete after this episode, and therefore, it’s my favourite. Bou-san could have used a bit more explanation why he ended up in both a rock-band and a monk as well. For Mai’s case, we still don’t know how she got her powers, and why it’s Naru that always appears in her dreams. John doesn’t have any background at all, while we still don’t know why Naru is so incredibly friendly towards Masako. Overall, this could have been done much better, so I’m hoping for some kind of OVA to finish all these stories that were left in the final two books who haven’t been animated yet. But that probably won’t happen.

Overall, I expected a lot from Ghost Hunt, but overall, it rather disappointed. Episode five was awesome, but I still have yet to encounter an episode that managed to beat it. It would have been better if a bit more emphasis was put on the side-characters. That’s why I liked this final arc: because it put one of the main characters out of commission for half of its airtime.

Posted on 27 March 2007 with categories: Ghost Hunt

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Short Synopsis: More people die as the sprits are trying to free whatever is trapped inside of Naru.
Bad: Most of the episode was boring…
Good: … but the ending was awesome.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7.5/10

Most of the episode did not what I’d like it to do, and yet again it reduced Mai to just a bystander, who just stands on one place while the others do the work. Okay, the possessed Kazuyasu in the middle of the episode proved to be at least something for her to do, but overall, the episode felt a bit boring to me. The death of the guy also lacked a bit of impact.

But then the ending came. Boy, that was one powerful cliff-hanger. Okay, I’ll scream if the next episode comes with a dues ex machina, but I’m just feeling that this arc is building up for something. It’s great to see that Mai was actually being hurt, other than just fainting at random places.

That’s also quite a strange use of an op they have there. First, it’s being left out, and then the tune appears at the time of the climax. Heh, quite interesting, and it works as a perfect background-tune for the cliff-hanger.

Posted on 22 March 2007 with categories: Ghost Hunt

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Short Synopsis: Naru still is out for the entire episode, while more people end up injured and wounded. There even was a suicide-attempt.
Good: Great cliff-hanger!
Bad: The evil grin on the spirits looked a bit fake, but this is just a minor detail.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10

You know what? I liked this! :D

Seriously, though. Now that Naru-chan is unavailable for this arc, Mai doesn’t have anyone to rely on or to drool over, so she’ll start acting for herself. The first half of the episode already shows this when she finally gives a good description of the dream she had. The things that happened in the dream of the previous episode are checked, and they all appear to be true. Not very exciting, but it’s definitely necessary.

I personally loved the second half. It starts with another one of the family-members being attacked (this time on his arms). The two children show themselves, and then it really becomes apparent that they’re possessed, as they’re actually disappointed that the guy didn’t die. They escape for that time, but Mai runs into them again later when she tries to give everyone a protective charm. They obviously run away, but Mai then finds out that they’ve been trying to kill various members of the household. What happened afterwards was very interesting.

Okay, so Mai made a mistake. Big deal, she almost threw her life away in the haunted school-building. But never has she actually put the lives of others on the line! She tries to catch the two children, but the boy escapes. The spirit then threatens to kill the boy if she doesn’t release them. He’s about to jump, and the only chance for Mai to stop him is by using the trick Bou-san taught her, despite his warnings to never use this on a human being.

The children ended up with some deep cuts in their back. They were lucky to have survived. But not only that. Mai didn’t only hurt the children, she also made the spirits even angrier than they already were. It’ll be very interesting to see how she actually is going to take responsibility for the things she did, as the end of the episode showed some signs that people actually died. In other words, Mai’s carelessness actually indirectly killed a couple of people. Finally she’s getting interesting! Woot!

Posted on 13 March 2007 with categories: Ghost Hunt

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Short Synopsis: The next, and probably final case revolves around a family which has been haunted by one or more spirits for a few generations.
Good: A smaller scale than the previous cases; I liked the back-story of the ghosts.
Bad: Will this final arc really save this series?
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7/10

Ah, last time, I made a prediction that either Naru or Mai would end up in some kind of grave danger. In the end, this turned out to be Naru, when he let a rather malicious ghost possess him. This leaves him put in a forced sleep for the next couple of episodes, and out of the investigation of the case. With this, Mai can only cling to Bou-san, which gives the current arc quite a bit of potential for Mai to show what she’s really made of.

But then again, I’ve been saying that for each arc. And still, they turned out disappointing. Gain, the show isn’t bad, but I keep expecting this show to match the fifth episode, and I’m getting annoyed that this has yet to happen. For some reason, the past few arcs found it a good idea to lower the pacing and give Mai a damsel-in-distress role. And that while the pacing was so addictive in the fifth arc.

Still, one thing I genuinely liked about this series was the back-story of the ghosts. If the creators can continue this further through the next episodes, then things can become really interesting. It seems that we’re dealing with a series of ghosts, among which is a couple, who committed some kind of sin and had to get chased out of their village because of this. I’m assuming that they died. So far, we’ve got three ghosts which have been confirmed to posses people. The one who now has hold of Naru, and the two children called Katsuki and Wakako. I assume that the two of them are possessed by the couple. Apart from them, I suspect that one of the other sons also has a spirit inside of him, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the other girl also was possessed. I’d just wish that we’d see a bit more of her.

I’m also glad that this arc is a bit more down-to-earth. Both Ubusuna and Sakauchi tried to curse an entire school, while Urado had almost countless of victims. This makes it rather hard to sympathize with the original victims, but right now the case revolves around a family. Most people who died were members of the family. This arc reminds me a lot of Ayatsuri Sakon, especially the Byakko-arc. Heh, I’d wish that Mai would be as versatile as Sakon. :P

We also got some very obvious signs that Matsuzaki is going to play a big part in this arc. While I don’t like the obviousness, it’s great to see Matsuzaki actually being useful. Before, you could have replaced her with a cardboard box and you still wouldn’t have noticed the difference.

Posted on 5 March 2007 with categories: Ghost Hunt

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Short Synopsis: Before people get the chance to leave, Masako wanders off on her own.
Good: Mai! Finally! Urado; Finally we have an episode with an actual good combination of light and heavy scenes.
Bad: Why wasn’t Masako slaughtered immediately like all other victims?
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10

Ah, I’ve been waiting for this. Finally Mai has to be strong, in order to save Masako, who displays a weaker side of hers during this episode. Okay, she had to be saved in the end, but this was a good step in the right direction. I’m really hoping that similar situations will appear in the next episode and the final arc. All that’s left now is add an addictive pacing like in the fifth episode, and I’ll be really happy. :)

And dear god, Urado. He probably was the scariest ghost on Ghost Hunt yet, bathing in the blood of his tens, maybe hundreds of victims. I have no idea how the blood remained fresh after all these years, but the way he looked even beat the evil mother of the second arc. But why the heck didn’t he kill Masako as soon as he kidnapped her? After all, all the other victims were killed as soon as Urado transported them.

The next episode will probably serve as a final chance to flesh out the characters, while the final arc is probably meant to reveal the secret Naru, Masako and Lin share. We already know that Professor Davis is Naru’s father, but there’s more to this than just that. And please let John and Matsuzaki have at least sort of an important role. They’ve been really useless up till now.

Posted on 25 February 2007 with categories: Ghost Hunt

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Short Synopsis: Okay, Mai obviously never really died. She got possessed by a deceased spirit and relived that spirit’s memory. In this episode, the truth gets discovered about the case, now all that’s left is to solve it?
Good: Quite a bit of background info on Naru, Mai looked really freaky at times.
Bad: Why is it always Mai who gets possessed. Take Matsuzaki for a chance.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7.5/10

Okay, so a little summary. The first owner of the house suffered from a rather heavy illness, which made sure that he didn’t have long to live. Because of this, he got the strange idea that if he bathed in the blood of young people, like his maids and people from a nearby orphanage, he’d regain immortality. He began seeing himself as Urado, or another version of “Burado”, katakana for Vlad, the person Dracula was based on. Obviously, his plan didn’t work, and he died. But not before he killed a rather large amount of people. His son, the next owner, realized this, and desperately tried to hide this by sealing off the original building by continuing and continuing to expand the house, sealing off the bloodstained parts. Urado’s spirit, however, remained inside the hose, and it’s quite a powerful one, as it managed to actually physically teleport persons through solid walls, killing them afterwards.

Regarding Naru, it’s never mentioned explicitly, but I think that everyone knows now that his father is the real professor Davis. That’s why he didn’t want to be associated with the fake one. It obviously isn’t fun to see someone pretend to be your famous father. Davis also seems to have assigned Lin to look over Naru, which probably explains why such a talented exorcist is working for someone like him. Another interesting thing is that Naru backed off when Mai mentioned how he doesn’t know what dying means. I don’t know what that means, but could it be that Naru died already at one time? Is that why he keeps showing up in Mai’s dreams? In fact, could he be one of those dolls that Lin made, in a desperate attempt to keep him alive?

Then, the cliff-hanger. It would be awesome if Naru actually were to leave the mansion, along with everyone else. It’d be great to see this problem actually solve itself, like seeing the house being wrecked down, or something similar. But the fact remains, however that Ghost Hunt has never really tried to defy the general rules of anime. All stories in Ghost Hunt so far have had a beginning and a conclusion, with the conclusion solving everything. And there still is the fact that we’ve still got one entire episode left. Mai will probably whine a bit to make Naru solve the case.

Overall, this was quite a nice episode. Lots of things happened to distract from the fact that Mai didn’t really do anything. The hidden room was a great addition, Mai really looked freaky when she was in shock and the fake Davis’s confession was pretty interesting.

One thing I am afraid about is the final arc. If you ignore episode 11, 12 and 13, each arc has been dealing with an increasingly dangerous case. First we had a spirit which liked to destroy just buildings, second we had a spirit who moved around objects and attempted to drown little children. The next curse was aimed at a rather large amount of people. Next up, a school was filled with a huge amount of spirits, all set to kill almost half of the students, while this case now has a bloody serial murderer as a spirit. The next case has to be along the lines of genocide or something. If I had to guess, the final arc will have 5 episodes, since 2 episodes will probably be too little for an arc at this point (although it would be appreciated, see The Third and Night Head Genesis). It has to close the series, so Naru-chan and Mai will probably get together. This can happen in two different ways: Mai gets put in grave danger, while Naru has to save her, or Naru gets put in grave danger, while Mai has to save him. I’m so hoping for the latter.

Oh, and while I told myself not to complain too much about this series for this episode, there still is something I wish to talk about. It’s the side-characters. Why the heck are John and Matsuzaki even in this anime? They’ve got absolutely no role at all. Okay, Matsuzaki comforts Mai at times, while John says something smart once in a while, but that could also have been done by other characters.

Posted on 22 February 2007 with categories: Ghost Hunt

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Short Synopsis: People from the investigation teams start missing, while Mai dies.
Good: That was one disturbing cliff-hanger.
Bad: Obviously, Mai didn’t really die. She really needs to stand up for herself.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7/10

Seriously, Mai looked so freaky in the end. It would be awesome if she really died, but the fact remains that we’re dealing with episode nineteen here. That’s not the time to kill off your main characters, unfortunately.

My problems with this series continue yet again in this episode. While it’s interesting to see Mai getting pushed over, knocked unconscious, possessed, pulled by her leg, surprised by a falling ceiling, attacked by spirits, nearly eaten by ghouls, stalked by ghosts, attacked by a giant black dog, fainting, having visions, fainting once more, falling inside a well, disappearing, getting deceived by Naru, getting attacked by a windows breaking, getting knocked over by a large bookcase, getting killed, et cetera, well… you get the point, I’d much rather see her actually protecting people from getting pushed over, knocked unconscious, possessed… et cetera. She’s got a great character, but I refuse to believe that all she has to be in this anime is the damsel-in-distress.

One interesting point to note, though: why has Naru-chan stopped showing up in Mai’s visions?

Posted on 15 February 2007 with categories: Ghost Hunt

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Short Synopsis: The new case: some ghosts have been hunting a very strange old mansion.
Good: Lots of characters this time. Should provide a nice twist.
Bad: MAI! Stop wandering around and actually start doing things for yourself!
Overall Enjoyment Value: 6.5/10

The next arc, and finally it looks like we’ve got another major arc which happens outside of a school-building. Right now, it seems that we’re dealing with two ghosts: a man and a woman. From the looks of it, they were heavily tortured before they died. Because of this, their spirits remained, even though they died. Right now, they’ve been kidnapping random people who entered the house. It seems that the mansion is in the possession of the former prime-minister. If not, than he’s at least involved in quite an important way, seeing that he’s the client.

Yasuhara pretends to be Naru-chan this time, since there seem to have been more psychics invited for research, some of which he doesn’t want to get involved with. I wonder who they might bee, as he never mentions them directly. But if I had to guess, it’s the British professor Davis who came over to Japan especially for this, along with his two rather incompetent assistants. Davis is just too perfect, while his assistants are just too stupid.

Lots of character-background also appeared this episode, right out of the blue. Suddenly, we learn the identity of the person who taught Naru-chan all about ghost hunting, Lin appears to be Chinese and Mai doesn’t have any parents left, so she’s living on her own. You’d wonder how she sustained herself before she broke Naru-chan’s camera.

So far, I’m not really expecting anything from this arc. Sure, the huge amount of characters is interesting, but I’m getting really pissed off at Mai now. She really needs to act for herself, and take initiative. Like mentioned before, it’s what made the fifth episode great and the other episodes lacking.

Posted on 12 February 2007 with categories: Ghost Hunt

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Short Synopsis: There are two possible options: let Matsuyama die, or send the curse back to the students who originally casted it, dividing its power.
Good: Mai was pretty touching.
Bad: Yet again, despite this arc being very good, it still doesn’t match up to the fifth episode.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 6.5/10

This episode was all about Mai. Finding the solution the curse took a step back from what’s really important. The only way to save Matsuyama is to reflect the curse to the students who casted it. It may divide the power of the curse, their lives still are in danger. Mai didn’t agree with this, and she was determined to let the whole world know about it. She even labelled Naru-chan as a murderer, and she wouldn’t even acknowledge that Matsuyama, another human being, would die if the curse wasn’t reverted. The episode ends with a romance-element. It seems that Naru-chan and Mai are getting closer and closer.

Still, I’m getting more and more annoyed with this series. Like mentioned above, I’ve been waiting for something to equal the fifth episode. But so far, the best thing that happened was the ending of episode 13. That doesn’t mean that the previous arcs have been bad, it’s just that they all missed something. The question is: what? Could it be the fact that a high school is the wrong place for a setting for this? While it’s true that I dislike anime which spend too much time inside a high-school, I don’t think that’s all.

Come to think of it, I’m starting to believe that Mai’s the reason to blame. She was very interesting in the second arc. She did things herself, she took initiatives, she wasn’t scared to voice her opinion, and all in all, she acted really professional. But what did we get in the latest arcs? In arc 3, she kept whining and whining about how she feels that Kasai isn’t the real culprit. Apart from that, she walks around the school a bit, and that’s ALL she does. Oh, and she faints once, to get saved by Naru. To make matters worse, what did she really do in the sixth arc? She faints a few times, she walks around the school aimlessly YET AGAIN. She has a few visions, tells everybody about them. This episode, she kept whining about her own morals, and even got herself almost killed, ONLY TO BE SAVED by Bou-san.

I really don’t like what’s happening here. Mai is turning into the helpless Damsel in Distress, who can only whine, and tell others what to do. While I praised the second arc because of its professionalism, the current arcs have been focusing way too much on Mai’s feelings. Not only that, she was way less helpless back in episode five. It’s probably because of Ayami. Because this girl had been entrusted to Mai, she was actually forced to protect someone, instead of being protected. And THAT’s exactly where she shines, and fails miserably respectively.

I now totally understand why the end of the thirteenth episode was so good: Mai disappeared. Because of that, the show focused on factors other than herself.

Dammit, I hate it when a main character ruins an anime.

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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Kemurikusa – 03

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