Posted on 7 April 2018 with categories: Anime Reviews, Junji Ito Collection

In the realm of manga there is a man whose name is inescapable when the genre of horror is brought up. That man is Junji Ito and his work is considered legendary for its artistic detail, mastery of manga paneling and it’s outlandish imaginative concepts. Up till now his work has yet to have an adaptation that fits his legacy despite a number of attempts to do so. And now with completion of the Junji Ito Collection anime I can sadly say that fact still remains. This animes greatest failing is the lack of effort to truly adaption Junji Ito’s work to animation with the animation being bare bones to truly awful and the art not even coming close to his iconic style. This anime at least can be watchable due to the creativeness of the material but having passable animation, voice acting and music isn’t a good enough trade for the quality of the source itself.

The stories all have a problem with endings where many of them just cut off abruptly and move on to the next tale without much breathing room. Few have conclusive ends to the story being told and can feel like they were cut off in the middle of the tale. Some stories also are questionable choices with the main examples being the Souichi stories when are more black comedy than horror and stick out awkwardly when compared to the other content. The horror stories themselves fail to be scary though some do have some disturbing ideas while others prove to be far too silly to be taken seriously. Otherwise Ito’s general weakness with characterisation can have people acting in awkward or idiotic ways.

Horror anime is unfortunately a rarity and it was a solemn hope of mine that this could be something special despite skepticism. Sadly be it due to staff or studio there felt like no real heart put into this production. A meer attempt to cash in on the legacy of some who puts tremendous effort and time into his craft. A man that deserved better than this.The soundtrack has no notable tracks, the opening is a questionable rock song and the presentation weakens the content that while not making a terrible show, unfortunately turns it into a mediocre one. I do not recommend this be your first introduction to the works of Junji Ito and this isn’t really an anime worth watching, nor remembering.

Posted on 15 March 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Junji Ito Collection

Ugh, I was lucky I ate before that first story started. Not so much scary but very disgusting with the oily dirty house and that brother with the pimples…ugh. This story is more gross out factor than actual horror as there isn’t really a plot besides this girl living with her horrible family in a house so disgusting that it’s amazing that she has not run away from home yet. The big twist involves the father killing his son and serving him up as meat for his restaurant.(Holy hell, the health inspector would have a heart attack at this place.) The meat prove popular and the father starts trying to fatten up his daughter by forcing her to drink oil while she sleeps.(Um…how can you sleep when someone’s forcing oil down your throat?) Daughter catches on so the father ends up chopping off his own foot to be cooked. End of story. You may think I left out some sort of conclusion their but really, that’s how the story ends. no resolution. I originally thought the father would start hunting people to sell as meat in his restaurant and it exploding into some kind of pandemic with oil polluting the neighborhood like in the girls dreams but nope. Father starts eating himself, end of story.

The second story is equally lackluster as it details about a village with a strange funeral ceremony of floating their dead down a river and the dead calling to a girls grandmother to come join them. There are implications that the dead end up trapped on earth when the corpse falls off the mat it’s placed on and judging from the three funerals shown, this appears to always happen. Again there is no real conclusion to the story besides the grandmother being floated down the river and joining the other spirits. I guess the idea of the dead calling out for you to join them could be a scary prospect when you are close to death but there does seem to be a lack of threat here. The ghosts are not really attacking or being dangerous, more mild annoyance. The final twist appears to be that the girls recently dead grandmother reached out to her through her dreams to try and get her to stop her corpse from being floated down the river.

Fat load of good that did, she watched the whole thing from start to finish without interfering at all, no wonder her grandmother’s corpse looked pissed. These two stories have the common aspect of having main characters who are more just obseversors to the tale rather than participant which does happen often in his tales. There are plenty of his tales where the main character more or less acts as a tool to explain the strange happenings rather than interact with it. There sole purpose being to encounter or explain about the horrific things Junji dreams up. They are not the main driving force of the story, more an avatar to get an outsider’s perspective on it. Hence why his tales don’t really include an arc or some sort of conclusion for the character in question as the goal is more to expose the horrific nature of the situation.

Posted on 7 March 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Junji Ito Collection

That is a surprise to see Tomie appear in this series as i originally thought her stories where to be covered in a separate OVA that is to come out. Now out of all of Junji Ito’s creations, Tomie is without a doubt his most Iconic. There are eight Tomie live action movies though their quality seems to be of questionable worth and Tomie has a whole manga omnibus with stories dedicated to her. Her general gimmick is simple, Tomie is a girl that cannot die and men tend to become obsessed with her to a unhealthy degree. Eventually those who encounter Tomie are driven to kill her, by obsession or just Tomie being a bit of a bitch. Then the monstrous nature of her is revealed as her version of immortality is a rather unnerving one. Chop her into two and you will have two Tomies, ingest a part of her and you become Tomie, and even her regeneration can take on nightmarish aberrations of mashed together Tomies. This story of the painter does a good job of showing what she’s all about and her character, namely a desire to immortalize herself despite being actually immortal and how people become obsessed with her. As well as her general manipulative nature and massive vanity. But as far as Tomie stories go this isn’t the strongest as she has better tales. In simple terms Tomie is like a Succubus, it that she leads all that come to love her to hell as they all clamor for her love but she can only love herself.

The second story is the most straightforward story to date with this series as it has a predictable setup. A couple crash in the middle of nowhere, encounter some strange vampire children and take refuge in a castle with a mysterious stranger. The only real inventive part is that there is a strange disease that is turning people into trees that bare fruit that contain blood. The disease ultimately gives an ultimatum, either die and become a blood fruit tree or drink the blood fruit from yourself and become a monster with an unending thirst for blood. And yet again the story ends on a non ending of the most predictable fashion. It isn’t helped that the anime cut out quite a bit from the story, likely to make room for the Tomie story, as there were more scenes involving the vampire children. Even one scene with the vampire children breaking into the mans garden of blood trees only for one of the tree villagers to reveal to a boy that he was his father, just right before the boy disregards him and rips the fruit from his branches. Personally I don’t really see this worth adapting as I would prefer something more haunting like the Hanging Balloons story though I guess this was chosen for timeframe reasons. Not that I expect that story would be given any justice but well…it would give me more to talk about.

Posted on 27 February 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Junji Ito Collection

Well I don’t know what kind of production trouble hit Deen, but this was the worse animation of this show to date. Honestly this was near the level of just having powerpoint animation as still frames were abundant and any scenes with animation were made far away enough to excuse lacking detail. There is a scene with clowns running on stage and I swear their running animation is literally three frames. So yeah this series has hit a new low despite the stories being relatively interesting. Our first story details a woman with amnesia who has her former fiance attempting to get her to accept his proposal and remember him. However the woman is clearly rattled by the mans strange sickly father and her nightmares involving giant centipedes. The final twist is stranger than her imagination as the man brings her with him to his father’s death bed only to see him getting devoured by some strange centipede creature. Turns out that seeing this creature is what caused her to be traumatised enough to lose her memory and to make matters even more strange the strange caterpillar creature is actually the collective brains of all the man’s ancestors. So it is family tradition that your brains eaten and joined with all the other brains in the centipede creature. Making for some kind of immortality as all the brains ingested appear to still has sentience. Makes for a decent scary story but it does have its share of holes, such as why is it that the man somehow thought she would change her mind on marrying him if she saw the caterpillar creature again. This one also has a non-ending as the woman just gives up on running away and is presumably…forced into the family? Hard to justify why the entire family is on board with the whole centipede eating your brain thing. I mean you can claim insanity but even the insane have some logic.

The second story was on the weird side as the circus has come to town and men from all over come to see the beautiful tightrope walking girl who captivates all that see her. However the show gets progressively more disturbing as the performers each die horribly during their acts.The level of nocalanence the ringmaster presents to each of their bodies getting dragged off stage makes this seem like a common occurrence. Ultimately it’s revealed that the top performer in the circus gets to marry the beautiful tightrope performer and each performer is gearing to win her affection. Though it’s a scam as the ringmaster appears to have some supernatural ability to sabotage performances so they have gruesome results. At the end of it all the ringmaster states that all the performers are dead and asks for volunteers from the audience with the prize of winning the tightrope girl as their bride. I was originally thinking there might be a bait and switch when the tightrope girl started claiming the ringmaster was a demon collecting souls for I thought it was rather on the nose to declare the supernatural entity. If anything I originally pegged the girl as the demon for she’s the one attracted the men to the tent in the first place by walking around town before the show. However it does appear to be that simple and I really question the logic the male characters show here.

I mean it could be there is some sort of spell keeping them blinded with love and stopping them seeing the trick to it all but I don’t think that’s quite the case. I mean the girl straight up tells the trapeze artist, whom she seems to have genuine love for, that if he tries to perform that he will die and the ringmaster has sabotaged the act somehow. But he’s like “No, I will perform perfectly, have no fear my love!”, thus the trapeze breaks and he falls and dies. Almost comical the timing of it. The final clown at the end with his oh so brilliant plan to announce running away from the circus, by shouting it up to the girl while the ringmaster was quite literally right beside him was just…really I am not sure we can blame magic on that level of stupidity. So we are well past the halfway point of this show and we can be pretty sure this is what we are going to get for the remainder. It appears that Junji Ito’s works just are not suited to the animated medium, or at least they won’t be getting a fruitful effort any time in the future. We have an anime for those not particular interested in reading manga but honestly the manga is just the better option as you get these stories with better artwork and more details that the anime cuts out. But I will say that Ito’s work very much is a matter of interesting ideas not quite fleshed out into full stories even in manga form.

Posted on 20 February 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Junji Ito Collection

This has to be the weirdest episode of this show yet. The first story was rather standard, namely about a record that causes people to become obsessed with it upon listening and seems to lead to the owner’s death. Not much to say about this one as what you see is what you get. I would say the escalation was lopsided as the girl killed her friend over it within minutes of the start of the episode. Which does make it seem like a chunk of the story was missing. And yet again the story just cuts off abruptly without much of a conclusion. The only thing we learn is that the record was somehow made by a singer after she died and the story suggests that it has been passing from hand to hand, killing those it comes into contact with.

Then we have the second story and in this case a large chunk of the story is actually missing. I previously didn’t focus on the adaption of this series much as I have come to believe that even with top tier production values, i don’t think Junji Ito’s stories can really work outside of their medium, at least not without significant adaptation decay. But this is one time were I really think the adaption of this story was mishandled. For some remarkably odd reason they decided to cut out the entire beginning of this story and have it start right in the middle of the story. Watching this was a bizarre experience as I as somewhat reminded of Mirai Nikki with the girls trip to her aunt’s house becoming more and more surreal. The story itself starts off on a confusing not by citing Socrates and some method of appearing in people’s dreams by whispering in their ear as they slept. Let me fill in the blanks here. Basically a boy was sneaking into this girls room at night through her window and things grow dire when this boy is mysteriously killed. Her family suddenly grows concerned about her and mention that they saw the boy in her room that night. What follows is her family growing increasingly paranoid and concerned over her. So much that when she returns home she is integrated over where she has been. The anime starts at the height of this escalation where he parents just have disregarded any sense of her privacy at all.

The idea is actually rather fascinating with the center of the town becoming a mad place where people’s privacy is nonexistent. Strangers walk through other people’s houses and even the act of locking ones door is enough to incite a mob to attack your house. It has become the social norm to have no privacy whatsoever brought to light by the girls aunt who walks around her own peephole filled house topless(If you watched the crunchyroll broadcast this was censored and she was given a sports bra. Odd that, violence is ok but boobs are not?) I do find having my privacy just abandoned and being constantly watched to be a terrifying prospect but this story takes it a step too far with weird eye monsters and of all things, jack the ripper? Much like many of Junji Ito’s other works we have a foundation for a good story but it really hasn’t been brought out to its full potential and that does seem to be a very recurring theme with this series.

Posted on 14 February 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Junji Ito Collection

My friends, I lament to say my interest in this series has fallen to a degree that I really can’t seem to care all that much about it. It’s a shame that it should turn out this way but not entirely unexpected. Our first story has to do with a boy being tormented by his weird neighbor who calls out to him at night and if there is a story that was killed by this anime not capturing Ito’s style, it’s this one. Let me give a visual example, this is the woman from the anime and this is the woman from the manga. One of these women would have me raise an eyebrow and wonder what the hell I was looking at. The other would have me shut the window, close the curtains and nope the hell out of there. It’s painful how still the animation is with not even the womans mouth moving as she speaks and the final twist just leaves the story hanging. Was the house trying to eat the boy? Or trap him? Why was the woman so interested in him? What even was that woman? I can get behind the idea of being tormented by a woman keen to get personal with you that you really want nothing to do with. Though if that woman was supposed to be bait to get the boy to enter the house then this house should have looked up some playboy magazines to create up a woman that the boy would be more keen to interact with. Though maybe that is the point, the house wanted to attract the kids attention but didn’t know how to appeal to humans. Regardless without ito’s detail this story just falls flat without a conclusion. We don’t know it the boy was finally gotten or if the house just stretched over and didn’t manage to get him. I think the bigger question is however…why didn’t he just sleep in a different room?

The second story was actually rather interesting and may have worked simply because it’s appeal wasn’t on finding the situation scary but instead on the idea of the story itself. In this story we have a family who bring back relatives as ghostly projections to help get over the grief of a family death. A newly wed girl is brought into this family only to find herself treated coldly and is rather keen to use this power to bring back her father when he dies as she has had constant nightmares of seeing him die and leaving her alone. I don’t think anyone was shocked to find this story pull a sixth sense and reveal the protagonist to be one of the apparitions brought back to life after an unfortunate death. The end of the story is the most conclusive i have seen from this series so far having the girl come to terms with her death and take comfort in the knowledge that both she and her father are not long for this world and at least will spend their last days together. It’s a good story but I feel it could have been fleshed out more with better characters and a longer duration as it’s developments were rather forced. Namely the husband’s sudden relationship with another woman and laying down the truth on his current wife happened within seconds of each other and could have been built into something better. Again its an interesting idea not really fleshed out to its full potential.

Posted on 7 February 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Junji Ito Collection

At this point I have pretty much given up on Junji Ito’s work ever transfering well to an animated medium. It is true that maybe with higher production values and a more talented team than his work could potentially be brought to life but even with that I still think it would come up short. Not because Ito’s work is of such polished perfection that nothing other than manga drawings could capture it, actually it may be the opposite. Junji Ito’s work is very much pulp fiction(The term, not the movie) in that the stories themselves nor the characters are not the true selling point. I would compare Ito very much to HP Lovecraft whose work is often highly regarded due to its influential ideas but when judged on his actual quality they too are essentially pulp fiction short horror stories of hit or miss quality. The strength is in the presentation and ideas of the work but not so much on its narrative quality. Indeed Ito tends to rely to heavily on body horror and his stories can veer into goofiness when attempting to be unnerving and surreal. Thus a Junji Ito story without the high detail of his art and the paneling of a manga is like a lovecraft story without the inner monologue of the narrators building madness. Essentially a silly monster movie.

But well we have two stories today and the first one is rather interesting as it deals with the main protagonists house being connected to other worlds. In this case the protagonist Oshikiri is finding alternative world versions of his classmates which all seem to be either terrified of him or wishing revenge on him. The actual concept is fascinating but the story does have its fair share of holes. For one if Oshikiri is aware that his house is a portal to other dimensions then why in god’s name is he still living in it? The big twist as well is that there are alternative world versions of himself which are murderers experimenting with humans in order to make a formula to make humans grow taller. It doesn’t really make sense that a teenager would be fooling around with science, especially one that doesn’t seem all that gifted intellectually and the killer Oshikiri’s motivation is just absolutely juvenile. Still I liked the final climax with Oshikiri and the girl trapped in the house wandering through infinite worlds potentially filled with killer Oshikiris. Also from the look of things there appears to be a sequel story to this so I wonder just where it will go with that.

And for the second story we have a return to the nail biting teenager chuunibyou whose fond of casting life threatening curses on his classmates. It’s clear by the presentation that his actions are more for black comedy than genuine horror but I find it falling flat on both fronts. The comedy is well…childish at best as we are apparently supposed to laugh over Souchi pants being pulled down? I mean yeah, I suppose it’s good to see this kid get some comeupence but this is some Dennis the menace level humor here.As for the horror I just find it offset by the comedy as it’s trying to push it as light hearted but the truth of this matter is that this kid has attempted to kill a lot of people. Yet others seem to be letting him off fairly easy for it. He gets a few nails to the butt and that’s it? If this kid got his way his two teachers and a student would be dead. I just can’t really enjoy this kids antics when he’s such an unlikeable wart of a character. So I hope he doesn’t have too many stories left in this season as they are clearly not gelling with the horror that the series is going for.

Posted on 31 January 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Junji Ito Collection

Today’s stories fell a bit flat for me as one of Ito’s tendencies to not explain his horrors actually somewhat backfired. In the first story we had a tale about a jade stone which cursed people with a disease that causes holes to open up on their body. The story itself was relatively simple but I can’t help but notice some logical inconsistencies. For one they state that the girl next door had been afflicted with this hole disease for all her life and yet when other people are infected they die within days. So what was this girl so special that she lived so long with the disease? The disease itself doesn’t make much sense either and while Ito does tend to stretch credibility to make his monsters come to life, here is another example where I feel he pushing things too far. This hole disease does create holes in the body as shown by the last victim who even had one of his eyeballs falling out of it’s socket due to a hole under his eye. Yet the victim can still somehow live which makes me wonder just how blood circulation works when the body is full of holes. Who was the doctor and why was he connected with the stone? Frankly I feel the horror of the story fails because we as the audience just know far too little of the situation to get what is even happening. At most we can speculate and even with that we have far too little information.

The Marionette Mansion story also has issues but at least there is more to work with when it comes to that story. Being about a brother that comes back to town and mysteriously his family are controlled by strings like puppets. The key factor her appears to be the puppet at the end who somehow must have been in control of all the strings. If i had to guess I would believe that the brother never actually came back to the town and the family which our protagonist was talking to was just puppets controlled by Jean-Pierre. The reason I believe was to somehow trick the protagonist and his sister into joining the house as it appears the older brother abandoned the puppet, he needs a human to be “complete” so to speak. Though in this puppets case he wanted the roles to be reversed. Again this story has it’s holes, namely that if the main protagonist found the house to be so suspicious then why did he keep coming back to it? He was clearly wary of the house and it’s puppet antics and yet he still let his sister stay there and kept coming back. Also why did the puppet freak out so much over the jealous girlfriend and attack the protag? How does the house ever work in regards to being controlled by strings all day? How do the puppeteers know what they want to do? The final reveal just kinda felt on the weak side as it was pretty obvious that was the case.

If there is a big flaw with these stories though it would be the endings. I have noticed this so far with all the stories but they tend to end far too suddenly. There isn’t really a sense of finality to the conclusion, instead it feels like the story just stops suddenly and is rather unsatisfying as a result. Even if that is the stories ending in the manga it would be better to dwell on it a bit to let the ending sink in before cutting to the credits. Another issue is with the presentation which while fine is still far too similar to watching a slideshow of the manga. Their is very little animation or attempts to truly adapt these stories to screen. They are essentially the manga put into an animated format without any real adjustment. Which may be fine for purests but when the anime just ends up an inferior version of the manga then people might as well just read the manga instead.

Posted on 23 January 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Junji Ito Collection

Our two stories today regard the handsome man at the crossroads and slug girl. The handsome man story was given the most screen time and it is a decent story, albeit unfinished. What was presented here was only the first part of the story and I believe it will be continued in later episodes. But what we have here is a town haunted by a mysterious figure whom people have taken to asking about their love life. Which would be fine if the mysterious figure didn’t always claim that their love would be unfulfilled and his words have such an effect that the girls commit suicide. There’s never really and explanation as to why or how this monsters came to be but if I had to make a guess I would say the monster of this town is the mysterious fog that appears whenever the pretty boy is walking about. The catalyst for these events seems to be an incident in the main characters past, where he told a pregnant woman that her love was doomed and that caused her to commit suicide. This appears to have given the fog a taste for blood as it appears to be trying to trap more girls souls within it by spawning the pretty boy and having him make girls commit suicide. At least that’s my interpretation though it doesn’t quite explain that the murders seems to only start up once the main character moved back into town.

The big question here is whether the handsome mans words are some kind of mind control considering the effect he has on his victims or if the mans words only have such an effect because they cause the victim to realise something. We have a case here of a girls friend asking the pretty boy about her friends love life only for the pretty boy to say that she should worry about her own. His words causing the girl to aggressively pursue the main character as though he were her last chance at love. Eventually leading to her suicide when he rejects her numerous advances. Considering how the girl becomes like a woman possessed as she transforms into a ugly visage of herself it would be easy to say that it’s all just some form of mind control. However it could be that this girl did have worries about her own love life and the pretty boy’s words merely confirmed her greatest fears of never finding love. Thus she pushes herself to find love no matter what and her efforts just backfired disastrously. Though it could be some kind of primal instinct stimulated that pushes for the ultimatum of either procreate or die. Thus this begs the question that if the main character did accept her advances then could she have potentially gone back to normal?

Slug girl was given the shorter runtime of five minutes but the story it presents is a rather good example of Junji’s approach to absurdist horror. There is no explanation as to why it happened but for some reason a girls tongue turned into a slug. While the first transformation was horric, the second does bring to light a certain problem I have with Junji ito’s works. Name that Ito has a tendency to go a bit too silly with his ideas. An example would be a chapter from his work Uzumaki where the people of the town gain the ability to create whirlwinds by spinning their fingers. A rather weird tonal shift for what was a rather tense grim story. Here we have the parents of the girl convince her to bath in a bath full of salt to kill the slug. I feel the parents went a bit overkill by having her bath in salt considering that her mouth was the main area affected and oddly enough this resulted in the girls body completely disappearing, leaving her as just a head with a slug coming out of its mouth like some kind of messed up snail. The implication that the girl is somehow still alive despite being reduced to a snail shell is a rather disturbing concept but I just find the logic of it to be rather flimsy. Sure it’s all fiction and it doesn’t make sense to have her tongue turn into a slug in the first place but it just feels like Junji had a disturbing idea and took it to too much of an extreme to be taken seriously.

Posted on 17 January 2018 with categories: Currently Watching:, Junji Ito Collection

After the first episode started off as a black comedy, I was worried that this series may suffer the same problem as Kino’s Journey in that the weaker stories in his work would be chosen for adaption. Lucky this does not appear to be the case but there is another problem which is not quite as easy to resolve. Junji Ito’s work has always faced problems regarding his work getting adapted, much in the same way that Stephen King’s work has had a lineup of failed adaptions. The big issue with Ito’s work is that the quality of it isn’t so much in the characters and writing but rather the idea and artistic value. Ito knows how to think up disturbing and strange horror concepts and work to illustrate and panel them to become massively unnerving. However when you strip away his artstyle, the apparent silliness of his ideas becomes more visible. Much like how Ufotables adaption of Gyo turned out, which was an admirable effort but sadly didn’t quite succeed. The live action efforts are marred by bad CGI and other factors, though the Tomie movies seem to have succeeded to a degree. Now Deen are taking a stab at it and their take appears to be sacrificing movement for detail. This has been a double edged sword as while this anime may be the closest to Ito’s style, the lack of movement makes it very much like a slideshow of the manga at times.

Our first story brings to front Ito’s style of using unconventional and sometimes humorously strange monsterities. It features a horrifically monstrous model whom a college film crew decide to include in their movie. Without Ito’s signature style this story could very easily fall flat on its face but it actually succeeds in being rather creepy here. I like it for being a bit of the subversion of the heart of gold trope in that usually in anime and media, a monstrously ugly person actually turns out to be nice and misunderstood. However in this episode we have a monstrous looking woman whom everyone gives the benefit of the doubt but really turns out to be just as horrific a monster as she appears. For judging book by its cover is bad but that doesn’t mean that someone can’t have an ugly appearance and an ugly personality as well. It also shows the deep discomfort of having caught the undivided attention of someone whom you don’t find attractive or the torment of being stalked. The main character has caught the attention of this monstrous creature and it’s quite disturbing to think that this woman won’t so much rip him apart with her fangs but instead…ugh…eat him in another sense. If i had a problem with the stories presentation it would be that the ending was rather abrupt and parts of the original story showing how the main distorted the women’s image in his head was missing but otherwise it was strongly shown how uncomfortable the situation was.

The second story is Ito at his best as while not really scary in the usual sense but the very idea of it is deeply unsettling. Detailing a story about a hospital patient who is experiencing long dreams, dreaming in which he spends large amounts of time stuck in and growing longer by the day. While time passes normally for everyone else, the patient goes to sleep and lives through 8 years in his dream. This is contrast by another woman whom has a massive fear of death and believes she will die soon. One is scared of their time getting cut short while another is terrified that their dream will continue for eternity. It’s a pity that the anime cut out a few panels with the patient describing his dreams such as 10 years as a soldier wandering a jungle, 6 years cramming for student tests and 8 years with a full bladder searching for a toilet that doesn’t exist. Made worse when his body begins to adjust to the time he spends in dreams and age prematurely, eventually transforming into a macabre husk. Leaving only dust and strange crystals behind. The last scene make for an interesting twist as the doctor treating him administers the crystals to the woman which in turn gives her long dreams as well. The doctor rationalises this that a eternal nightmare is better than the void of nothingness that death could very well be. Personally I find the idea of being trapped in my own mind for a century in a single night to be a atrocious alternative to death. But well if you can get the internet in there, maybe I would think about it. The presentation falls a bit shorter in this story but luckily the story itself is enough to carry it.

CHANGE USERNAME
Kaiser-Eoghan
Of course these adult characters can exist outside of a fantasy and also be more relatable to me now, which is also a good thing, in a more serious story.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Alot of this has to do with getting older and being aware of that fact, knowing theres a 30/40 something able to do stuff I can't.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I would welcome an age of pensioner-ploitation films.
Amagi
I always enjoyed movies with old guys for example. Not only that, but I usually like it. For various reasons like the stories they have to tell, the nearing death (for very old ones) or a midlife crisis but welp, these movies were common 40 years ago, now it's teens and young adults since these are the demographies that are most likely willing to pay for the cinema or to buy merch.
Amagi
Yeah same here. Modern hollywood movies are way more mainstream than old ones and try to be the lowest common denominator with the most common tropes and stereotypical characters so unless you have more or less the most common taste and way of thinking for whatever reason you won't enjoy it and only get even more bored with every new movie that just feels like the 1000 movies before that.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Wheras I'd delight in anything left field or out of the box, because I love being constantly buzzed or surprised or seeing something do something uncompromising or weird.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*sense of
Kaiser-Eoghan
But I understand that people feel belittled when they watch something they can't make traditional sense or or morally work out .
Kaiser-Eoghan
But I've accepted that the stuff I really really like is going to be alien to a majority. I'd watch a lurid ova or b movie over any popular shounen or most post 80s hollywood films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There would have been a time where I'd thought I was doing it wrong or that people would just think me some kind of hipster or contrarian for not liking popular/mainstream stuff/what everyone in the same room/site likes.
Amagi
Same with movies. I guess in the end it's always about being able to relate. If there is a strange character only certain people can relate to they'll enjoy it while everyone else falls asleep and vice versa with more typical characters. Hell I have seen a ton of non-stop action movies that literally put me to sleep because there was nothing for me to root for nor any great twists to expect.
Amagi
It's strange but whenever people hate a series for being too boring it turns out to be a series I like which is weird because I consider 80% of all existing series boring, including many series most people actually consider exciting and/or enjoyable as hell.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I remember there was a devil may cry anime, the guy subbing it didn't do a very good job but it was an okay extended advert for the game.
Lenlo
The man has also said that if someone would get him the rights to Berserk, he would do that to.
Animosh
Well, you still deserve credit for suggesting the series, because otherwise I wouldn't have even known it existed. :) But yeah, I like that people here are so open-minded. Anime is great and all, but there's plenty to discover outside of it (though to be fair, I'm lagging behind with many of them: following anime seasonally is great for discussion, but it can eat up a lot of time).
SuperMario
@Animosh: don't mention it. I'm glad you enjoy it. I don't take credits in this case since I myself haven't watched it yet. I love it how this community is willing to try other medium and not exclusively anime
Animosh
Really surprised this isn't more well known. Not that there's been much competition, but it's easily the best (western) cartoon I've seen this year.
Animosh
@SuperMario: thanks again for recommending Lastman! I just finished it, and it was a lot of fun. It doesn't have much depth, but it was incredibly entertaining: it just keeps throwing these bizarrely over the top action set-pieces at you without pausing, it oozes style, and its soundtrack is killer (it reminded me a bit of Hotline Miami). And it can be pretty damn funny too. It even ends strongly.
SuperMario
"I swear if I see some nonsense like her not being able to stay “Professional” due to having a boyfriend then I will have to strangle something" --> is that why you had screenshot of kitties up there?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: little sister has a strong chance to be a protag in the last arc. I'm genuinely surprised that Futaba is the main girl in this arc thou
Kaiser-Eoghan
I want to see the little sister looking scared in bunnygirl agrain.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Yay! Sing and eiji are doing something and Ash's freakout while melodramtic and ridiculous was still bleak, learn a bit more about Blanca which is good. Didn't like the goofy bit with yut-lung.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Not intellectually non-intellectual enough for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Bunny-girl has redeemed itself. Also my favourite part of this weeks episode was 7 or 8 minutes before the end .
SuperMario
I mean, just reading that title alone I might check out what this movie is about. lol
SuperMario
Well, I come across an unusual film title today. A Japanese film called "When I Get Home, My Wife Always Pretends to be Dead"
Kaiser-Eoghan
The Lafalle arc (as thematically I probably engaged the most here)and the final arc both elevated this series for me, even though I did enjoy the bit with Vann early on.
I’ve heard people don’t like the ending it hit with me.
Really solid.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Dramatically this even kind of clicked for me and the antagonist surprised me as did twintails girl and bestghosts eventual roles, comedy isn’t exactly funny but I did laugh at points.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Apparently I got third time lucky with Mizukami, because I found this a very fresh take on the re-incarnation genre while actually DOING something worthwhile with it, his pacing/story telling style definitely feels a better fit to me in a short manga like this.
Kaiser-Eoghan
After a degree of indifference to planet with and only liking Biscuit hammers last arc, I ended up approaching Spirit circle expecting to not really have any opinion on it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Just my kind of weird.
Anonymous3093267
sword eyes
SuperMario
Here's another experimental animated short for you, Kaiser, Tango (1981) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lo8O8lYDzIU
SuperMario
@Animosh: yeah the second part was released in VOD earlier this year and I watched it. Prefer the 1st one much better
Vonter
I don't know why, but I thought you were talking about Tomorrowland. That Disney movie that bombed and everyone seemed very lukewarm about. I suppose because I don't know exactly what was the problem with it, didn't see much discussion about it.
Animosh
@SuperMario: I think I've seen World of Tomorrow, but not 100% sure. There's apparently a second part out though, and I definitely haven't seen that!
Animosh
And Umfeld (https://vimeo.com/umfeld) is also worth mentioning. It kind of consists of shorts, it's technically animated (at least in part: it mixes real footage and CGI I think?), and it's definitely weird. It's a very polarizing work though. I love it, but it wouldn't surprise me if most people here hate it.
Animosh
Some other things that came to mind: Tim Burton's "Vincent" (it's stop-motion, but whatever), Loom (https://vimeo.com/24069938) and E-Baby (https://vimeo.com/25435555). And the stop-motion shorts by Lee Hardcastle are pretty fun, if you're in the mood for some needlessly disgusting horror.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I enjoyed embrace of the serpent which has the same director as Birds of passage so I'll keep an eye out for it.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I'm going to see Roma and Birds of Passage this weekend. Really excited for both
Kaiser-Eoghan
As for the she-ra thing well, as I've gotten older I probably have avoided kids stuff more.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I don't want to see tokenism being seen as acceptance when it isn't, it feels that people are putting forth the idea that something is only being/can be accepted because its being portrayed in a tokenistic way.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its fine, obviously to have strong female characters, Ripley in Alien, Sarah Conner in Terminator, awesome....Rey in star wars....no.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think too often shows and films, American ones today, are tokenistic or clicheed with inserting issues, merely just throwing them in or tacking them on for the sake of ticking boxes rather than any earnesty or doing anything.
Anonymous3086853
@SuperMario - I do. Yet at the same time it was a bit outside of my comfort zone, watching something like this considering that (let's be honest) msot shows are men oriented. Even the ones with great female characters. This one despite having tomboyish girls is mainly about these girls with male characters having supporting roles. I suppose that's were the uneasiness lies in my case.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Just got done watching both earlier, his dark humour jives well with me and I liked the concept.
SuperMario
@Kaiser @Animosh: if you haven't seen World of Tomorrow plsssss check it out. I can't recommend it highly enough
SuperMario
@Vonter: Maybe it's a good things that shows for general audiences like this have queer context. Don't you think?
Anonymous3086853
Also because I'm a bit immature, this show is kinda gay. There's a lot of ship baiting moments, one same sex couple in the last episode and rainbows, pastel colors, emasculated male characters and some female crossdressing.
Anonymous3086853
The weakest aspect is that several secondary characters get lost in the shuffle. Kinda like Big Hero 6 in which the team had personalities but just didn't had the time to develop in any meaningful way. Still both the main cast and villains were good and like I say the protagonist and antagonist had strong arcs for a first season.
Anonymous3086853
So I now finished watching She Ra, and it got even better as it was building towards the season's end. Thes strongest aspect is the rivalry between Adora and Catra, the chemistry is very strong, kinda like Optimus and Megatron or Xavier and Magneto. In which both parts seem equally capable and to have mind games with the other.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Oh hey cool, rain town is done by the Penguin hhighway anime movie guy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It looks like I haven't seen Don Hertzfedlts World of tomorrow films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also Prince Achmed and How Wang-Fo Was Saved.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah. yes, thanks animosh, I had a look at Rain town there, I like the style it was done in, it achieves the emotions its trying to convey well without needing dialogue, piano score actually helps rather than hinders.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Glassy ocean, that was another short I watched lately.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Oh inka isha is country doctor.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I know Mario has seen this style on animation, but anyone else see any oil on glass animation?
Kaiser-Eoghan
I actually prefer robot carnival to genius party but liked both.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Zepo, The Pride of Strathmoor were recent animated shorts I watched.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Recently I watched two shorts, death and the mother and pleasures of war.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd say any eastern european short films would be worth anyones time.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm not familiar with rain town or Inaka Isha .
Amagi
Kaiser: Have you seen Inaka Isha from Kafka?
Animosh
In the meanwhile, though, I'd also be very interested in recommendations! The shorts I mentioned are among my favorite animated works, so if you know anything similar, please let me know. :)
Animosh
For western animation I really like the Don Hertzfeldt shorts. And there was this short called "Rain Town" that was really impressively animated. I'm sure there were others, but my long-term memory is pretty lousy. If something else comes to mind I'll let you know.
Animosh
I'm pretty sure you're already going to be familiar with all of my favorites, but here you go: Morimoto's shorts are all fantastic (Dimension Bomb, Beyond, Noiseman Sound Insect, etc), and two others that come to mind are Cat Soup and Kigeki (or Comedy) by Nakazawa. There are also some great collections out there (like the Genius Party ones), but again, you've probably seen those already.
Kaiser-Eoghan
If anyone has any suggestions for weird short animations, I'm looking for excuses to watch some more and I'm in the mood for them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Masky: Mario's youtube link had cgi models of rem and ram in the video.
Masky
I'm confused when was Rem even mentioned
Kaiser-Eoghan
I only ever watched he-man and stuff related to it in passing when I was younger, Conan was more my thing back then.
Kaiser-Eoghan
For so long I'd always referred to she-ra as she-man.
AidanAK47
@Mario, What is this heresy!
....
....Rems always cute.
Anonymous3084910
Hilda is fine, though is very laidback kinda like a young reader's novel. It has its moments but its fantasy with slice-of-life coming of age.
Anonymous3084910
@SuperMario Yeah I know, She Ra is the twin sister of He Man. But strangely it seems Dreamworks may not have the right to those characters. It was a marketing idea trying to bring more girls to that universe but like most girls show from the time it had a very flat depiction of what little girls want to see.
SuperMario
Sorry Aidan, I know it's blasphemy but I have to post here. Enjoy the OP song with the twins https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v9MUjISNm0U&index=4&list=PLU56jBSlcHw8-ol9Hi4lJ0GR0tU6EOf2a
SuperMario
I'll probably check out Hilda. Heard a lot of hypes about that show
SuperMario
@Vonter: I've heard of She-Ra, she's the female counterpart (well, sister) of He-Man (the most powerful man in the universe and the secret identity of Prince Adam). Sounds silly but I'm not even kidding
Vonter
All in all, despite not being a big thing, I think is an enjoyable recommendation. My only nitpick is that it maybe too light hearted for some kinda like above My Little Pony but below something Voltron. Also despite being less childish than the original is still kinda of girly with lots of pastel colors although it balances it a bit having girls being more tomboyish in different degrees.
Vonter
Like with Voltron it amuses me seeing anime tropes being played through western lens. Since I'm a bit hesitant to say that could this count as a harem series despite not being male gaze moments? Also having the most sensible hotspring episode I've seen.
Vonter
In this one this She Ra has pathos. A bit like Korra there's doubt in her role and also a complicated relationship with her rival. I do like the role reversal in the knight's tale this clearly is, in that most roles that would be played by men are played by women in this story. Matriarchy, displacement of both femminine beauty but also empowerment.
Vonter
So I've watched some of the new She Ra from Netflix. So far I'm in, it's not deep but it's quite charismatic. I do like there's more pathos in regards to these characters which pretty much were confined to their archetype to an extreme like the original Power Rangers.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It manages to make watching something like running engaging, when I'd otherwise probably not watch the sport. Also, last week the show ended up popping into my head when I was sitting around doing pretty much nothing and made me think "Ok fuck it, not sitting around doing nothing, going to go out for a run around the block"
Lenlo
I also agree, characters losing in sports is important. They can't start at the top, it makes the series lose meaning
Lenlo
I quite enjoyed Kaze Fui this week. I think your correct that the one who got the reality check was Kurahara, who thought he was the only one able to actually make it. I also thing that he has a competitive streak a mile wide, and might be a little afraid of failure. Doesnt think the team can make it, so why bother
Kaiser-Eoghan
Think I wasn't i the mood for honda-san this week even though I laughed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I like it when sports series actually show the characters you know...actually lose.
Anonymous3083989
Huh, interesting in this episode of Kaze ga that it's Kakeru who got a reality check during the track meet since he was beaten by two other runners. I think we're due for an episode soon where he has to confront his past demons instead of fleeing from them.
Anonymous3083626
@Kaiser-Eoghan - Aging in fiction, I think has more to do with the story than the characters. I mean the jokes about Ash Ketchum, Detective Conan, Archie. The Flinstones tried to make different stories by aging Pebbles and Bam Bam. Or Batman having two Robins graduating into their own heroes. But in the end dynamics change, hence why most cartoons don't age the characters.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Which is why when aging does occur in anime/manga, such as in vinland saga or nanoha for example, its appreciated.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And of course, animated characters often don't age much.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can remember enjoying the simpsons movie back when I watched it, but thinking about it it really was just an extended episode. Really the show peaked with the who shot Mr Burns episode. Catching bits of recent episodes and seeing them use modern stuff while they never age seems weird too.
Amagi
I do think series are allowed to move forward though, I am kinda interested in the Pkmn movie for example. But certain shows should just end, Simpsons for example was a parody of the 90s, it just can't work in a more modern setting IMO.
Amagi
I stopped with the Simpsons when Maude was killed/died, it was just a step in the wrong direction they should have never done and it killed the series for me. I disliked it before already though, I think I noticed the series getting worse since season..9? Or 10, not sure anymore.
Amagi
Anime for Dorohedoro announced.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Therefore ruining the fanservice fun for everybody.
Kaiser-Eoghan
My favourite beach episodes are ones where it rains and they end up not being able to go.
Kaiser-Eoghan
After that it was just the film for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Actually, regarding the simpsons, the episode I stopped on was sometime in the early 2000s, Homer was stuck on some island resort or something.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I suppose it was just as much a case of falling out of watching/playing too and then there being so many episodes/games catchup was impossible. I probably should read the manga someday.
Anonymous3081957
@Kaiser-Eoghan -Kinda like Sponge Bob, Power Rangers or The Simpsons, I can't blame those who move forward, It's imposible for a show to go that long without losing steam. I did check the Sun and Moon first season and while I think the personality and energy is better it doesn't exactly push the concept forward. Still somehow Pokemon is still a phenomenon.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Very strange hearing a Pikachu talk with Ryan Reynolds voice. But my days of pokemon are behind me.
KyokoHyuga
?????
KyokoHyuga
who likes pokemon here
SuperMario
@Amagi: I think the person who made the sub for Maquia did a pretty neat job. Not perfect but the translation flows well
Vonter
We've seen realistic Pokémon fanart, but how does a movie looks when it attempts it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q8CKgQFo5U8
Amagi
How are the subs for Maquia? I only heard anons complain about it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*dealing with
Kaiser-Eoghan
Though you should really torrent it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There is 1080p stream on kiss anime, if you hate deal with the ads on that site the 4up stream on anilinkz has the best quality of the available links
Lenlo
Where did you see Maquia online? I still need to watch it. PM it to me on discord maybe? Pretty please? <3
SuperMario
One fact that not many people know is that Penguin Highway is penned by Tomihiko Morimi. It indeed has many Morimi's signature inputs
SuperMario
This year, I'm doing well with catching up anime films (kudos for Australian's Madman who always license these titles very quickly). So far, I've watched Mirai, Maquia, Penguin Highway, Let Me Eat Your Pancreas and My Hero Academia the Movie
SuperMario
So I watched two anime movies this last week, Penguin Highway in theatre and Maquia online. Both of them are pretty solid in general, especially Penguin that has magical realism elements and some great chemistry. Whereas Mari Okada's writting still rubs me in the wrong way sometimes
Lenlo
D: He did, back in August actually apparently
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: I heard Dino's voice actor died.
Kaiser-Eoghan
If we all took Goblin slayers attitude to trolls, then we would more easily ignore the trolls =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
Big twist in the golden kamuy manga.
Animosh
@SuperMario: remember that in the voice drama Rikka mentioned talking to Yuuta in their classroom during the ball game. Pretty sure it's about that.
SuperMario
@Animosh: i just watched the episode and noticed the lyrics as well. "The Promise" seems vague at the moment. Could be between Yuuta and whoever fits but I agree the "save someone from boredom" is about Akane
Animosh
You learn something every day. ;) Honestly though, I actually skipped the opening, so I hadn't even noticed that it had been translated until others pointed it out. And most of the time the lyrics are just cheesy one-liners, so I usually don't pay much attention to them either. But once in a while there's some nice hints hidden in there...
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I never really ever paid attention to the lyrics in anime openings, I'd never thought to.
Animosh
The Gridman OP has been translated for the first time, and there's some pretty interesting reveals in there: it mentions a "promise" made in a classroom (so now we know how Yuuta and Rikka bonded in the past - glad it wasn't a simple confession), and talks of "rescuing" someone (presumably Akane) from boredom. So I guess she'll join the good guys eventually?
Lenlo
1200 words. I need to stop writing so much.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I haven't seen last weeks episode of Irozuku or this weeks =< I'm waiting now for a bit to see if the series paysoff.
Animosh
Goddamn those magic segments in Irozuku were stunning! It's a shame its humdrum drama can't live up to its visual beauty, but I'll take it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think Ash's design is based a bit on River phoneix.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Sorry Eiji but your Ash is in another castle.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@CoolerAnon: I was about to say that. Kidnapping gets used alot in shojo.
Anonymous3072040
Yeah Ash is basically Princess Peach
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: I share your concerns, I don't know what studio is doing it. Some people want it to be mappa, some don't want it to be polygon pictures to adapt it. Its and long and violent manga, with some very funny at times dark humour, it could end up rushed and/or censored.
Anonymous3072021
As much as I love Dorohedoro I'm unsure if I should be happy or worried at it getting an adaptation, it isn't exactly the kind of story I imagine being easy to adapt well.
Lenlo
Yeah, I am touching on that in my writeup as we speak. The compressed story is causing Ash to be captured every other week.
Animosh
I agree Banana Fish was great this week though! My only gripe is that I'm getting sick and tired of seeing Ash get kidnapped again and again. He just escaped a couple of episodes ago! And he's just a lot more fun to watch when he's out there doing stuff.
Animosh
In a way the fights actually feel more realistic to me than those in Banana Fish. Sure, they're fantastical, bizarre even, but its battle system has a clear internal logic, and generally no power is infallible (each has its limitations). In Banana Fish the fights are rather poorly thought out by comparison. Their purpose is more to make Ash look cool than to give him realistic hurdles to overcome.
Animosh
@Kaiser: what sets Jojo apart from other battle shounen for me is how ridiculously creative its fights can get. Part 2 already shows some signs of this, but the introduction of the Stand system in Part 3 pushes it to another level, and in Part 4 the fights are consistently awesome. There are no simple beam struggles here: every fight is a battle of wits, between people with wildly different powers
Niel
Vinland Saga anime, and Now Dorohedoro just got announced. i'm really liking this trend.
Lenlo
Lots to writeup on Banana Fish this week.
Lenlo
Just finished it, I really like Blanca.
Lenlo
Because Jackie Chan and his stunt crew are some of the best in the world. There is a reason he has to insure his guys from his own pocket. No agency will take them
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have no idea how the hell Jackie Chan is still alive.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Action works best for me when I really feel that theres danger involved. Thats why when some actors do their own stunts, you can fear for the actors life, and also the character.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And thats why I'm a big fan of all that Chinese martial arts stuff from the 60s and 70s, that really expertly crafted chereography.
Lenlo
As for action, I like good choreography more than any super powers. Its why Cowboy Bebop, Seirei no Moribito, Sword of the Stranger and some Naruto fights are fantastic.
Lenlo
Im about to watch this weeks episode, so this chat makes me hopeful. I agree Ash and Eiji are the backbone of the series, and yeah me and Kaiser both agreed that the Gang war aspect was pretty weak, though I thought the finish with Arthur wasnt half bad
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I think Banana fish has a great grit to it for this reason.
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