Posted on 24 December 2008 with categories: Anime Reviews, Kurozuka


From the director of Death Note, Kurozuka is Madhouse’s latest action series. This time, it’s packed with lots and lots of Japanese-styled horror, and comes in a package that just oozes style. With an OP that’s even more extreme than the second one from Death Note, this is the perfect watch if you need to lose some frustration, pump some adrenaline or find some other excuse to watch a bit of tense action.

Because really, this series hardly gives the viewer any time to take a breath. There are lots of quiet moments throughout the series, but even they remain clouded the show’s very thick atmosphere, as it prepares for the next climax. This series set out to create an combination between action and horror, and it pretty much succeeded in this.

But yeah, Kurozuka is all about action and atmosphere, so don’t even try to expect something special from the plot or characters. The plot is actually pretty decent. It’s simple, yet it’s got a number of surprising plot twist, and even though the ending isn’t going to answer every question that’s left behind, it succeeds in keeping an air of mystery around the show.

The problem with this show is the cast of characters. They’re just… there. They hardly get the time to be fleshed out, but none of them make a particularly strong impression, safe for a few minibosses, who manage to provide the best action-scenes of the series. The main character Kuro has his own background, but we never see any sides of him, other than the silent stoic side that doesn’t talk a lot and wants to fight.

But then again, if you want deep characters, you can always watch a different series. Kurozuka knows exactly what it is: an action flick that never really goes anywhere deep, and that’s where it succeeds at. The graphics for this series are downright awesome, and they turn every single episode into a visual feast. There’s always something nice to look at and a continuous atmosphere. My only real complaints are that the ending doesn’t fit the tone of the rest of the series, but nevertheless I personally enjoyed watching this series a lot.

Storytelling: 9/10
Characters: 7/10
Production-Values: 9/10
Setting: 8/10
Posted on with categories: Kurozuka



Short Synopsis: The plot of this episode is obviously going to be one big spoiler, but even then it can’t be summarized in just one sentence…
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10 (Good)
Aha! So the creators decided to go for a big WTF-ending. And WTF it is! Since I kept associating this series with Ultraviolet because of their similarities, i expected a similar ending, one where all the threads that were left hanging were wrapped up inside a nice conclusion. Well, even though Ultraviolet’s conclusion was pretty straightforward, this one MOST CERTAINLY ISN’T.

I’m still not exactly sure what the heck went on there. Kuro first slaughters the kabuki players (of which I have no idea what they were even doing there), suddenly blood comes raining down from out of nowhere with buckets at a time and then he finally arrives at the room where Kuromitsu is. The one who’s talking to her: Benkei. That bugger seemed to have received immortality was well (or at least a body that ages very slowly, as becomes apparent later in the episode).

As it turns out, he was no traitor, but instead he couldn’t bear to see his friend that’s fallen in love with such a person as Kuromitsu, which is why he betrayed him. I’m not sure whether he was actually in love with Kuromitsu, or didn’t see her fit as someone who Kuro should love… it’s there were he obtained a body that wouldn’t die, though over the years, his body did age a bit, as he’s turned into an old man. As it turns out: Kuro has become immortal, but Benkei chopped off his head. Apparently, he spent ages without any body whatsoever, and that’s why Kuromitsu created Kuon to serve as a body for Kuro. That plan failed, however, and in the end she had to settle with a random soldier from the bad guys.

Okay, so far so good, but why did Kuromitsu still go after the guy’s head once he got a new body? I’m still not sure at this point, and the rest of the episode didn’t make things any clearer: Kuro and Benkei fight, Kuro wins. Kuromitsu then finally manages to chop off Kuro’s head. Time then reverts, we see a bunch of flashbacks and we suddenly see Kuro and Benkei again as if they were in the first episode, only with the rest of their surroundings destroyed. Eh, what?!

To be honest, I’m not sure whether this was the bets ending the creators could have gone for. Sure, the confusion is fun and all, but it’s leaving a strange taste in my mouth. The threads, such as where did the bad guys come from, why did they last 1000 years, and why did they work together with Kuromitsu in the end are unsolved. What was the purpose of the kabuki players, why are they so keen on killing every single being? What’s up with their blood obsession? What was Benkei doing at Kuromitsu’s, after 1000 years? I really need to watch this episode with subs, but even with that there are just too many threads left hanging for this series.

Overall, it was a fun series, and it’s got an excellent sense of horror, but when I have to compare this to Ultraviolet which aired this summer, then I’d prefer the latter. That mostly is due to the rather lacking characterization, that’s plagued through this series, safe for two or three episodes. Ultraviolet on the other hand did have a strong cast that was fun to watch.

Posted on 20 December 2008 with categories: Kurozuka



Short Synopsis: Kuro attempts to get rid of the final two villain-henchmen.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10 (Good)
This is going to be a short entry, since it was a minor episode anyway: it just meant to set the stage right for the finale of the show. Thankfully, most of the episode was spent on the fight with Kuon, and the “evil overlord” went down pretty quickly. His fight was fun and didn’t drag, thankfully. And yeah, like predicted: everyone dies apart from Kuro and Kuromitsu. What I also liked was that the kabuki-players at the beginning seem to have an actual role in the series. They’re like, the real evil overlords it seems, but what I especially loved was the way Kuon met his end. Such a befitting death for him. ^^;

My one disappointment was that this was THE time for the animation to get back up to those awesome levels of the first episode, but unfortunately it’s still of the same level. It’s a shame, I would have loved to see what the director can really do, without him having to resort to epic chips-bag-opening-scenes.

Posted on 10 December 2008 with categories: Kurozuka



Short Synopsis: This time on Kurozuka: exposition.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10
Well, I must say that, expecting nothing big out of the story for Kurozuka, this episode pleasantly surprised me. While not every mystery has yet been revealed, the complexity of the whole storyline seems to have tripled with this episode. The big bad guy works for Kuromitsu, Kuromitsu seems to be performing human experiments, with both Kuro and Kuon as her subjects. And who knows what she did with Sanniwa.

Kuon’s supposed twin brother also didn’t last long at all. He was there for like what? Five minutes? That’s probably one of the shortest amounts of airtime for a villain in like ever, but the guy did at least make an impact in providing back story for Kuon (who needed that one really badly).

Okay, so with this there are two episodes left. It would be great if this series were to finish with a great finale, but there are several things that are bound to get in the way. The next episode will focus on the fight with the big bad guy, but the guy is just a typical one-dimensional overlord. I really doubt that the creators can get an interesting fight out of him. Then next up is the big confrontation with Kuromitsu, but I fear that at that point, there will be too few characters alive to really make for an unpredictable ending. Ultraviolet for example had a final episode with lots of characters still alive, and therefore it finished with a pretty strong finale. Will Kurozuka be able to do the same?

Posted on 3 December 2008 with categories: Kurozuka



Short Synopsis: The attack on the headquarters of the bad guys.
Highlights: Turtle dude rocks
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,5/10 (Awesome)
You know, I really consider this episode to have the best action-scenes of the entire series so far. Okay, so they still weren’t as well animated as episode one, but they were one thing: incredibly fun to watch. Really, so much went on, and more especially, the major characters involved showed their best sides. It’s strange, the fights definitely weren’t the most well animated, or intense, or had the best fight coordination out there, but they kept my interest throughout the entire episode.

This episode felt so out of place in this series, but yet it worked. The car-chase-scene, the motorbike, it all fitted, and just about everything in this episode was really creative. The characters aren’t deep at all, but they’re fleshed out just enough to make us care about them. And I think that that was why I enjoyed this episode so much.

The problem is of course where this series is going to go after this point. The fact remains that the two characters who made this episode so much fun to watch are dead now, and we know hardly anything about the big bad guy. Seriously, WHO IS HE?! This guy seriously lacks fleshing out. I really wonder where the creators can be able to take him as such a stereotypical evil overlord. But then again, I do have high hopes for the reunion with Kuromitsu, and the deaths of the final two partners of Kuro (I mean, there’s no way that those two are going to make it to the end of the series with this pace ;P).

Posted on 26 November 2008 with categories: Kurozuka



Short Synopsis: Kuro suddenly finds himself approached by a strange old man.
Highlights: Now this is psychological horror!
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,5/10 (Awesome)
Best episode of the show so far since the first episode. It’s taken a while for this series to arrive at its real meat, but now it’s finally about time to work towards the series’ finale and this episode really showed the building up come together.

What especially made this episode work well were the bad guys. They were no longer strange caped dudes who kill lots of people, but instead had real personalities. I felt like they were people, rather than a bunch of literal killing machines, and it’s good to see this series spend some effort in its weakest area: the characterization.

I especially like that lizard man, who uses illusions to get rid of his enemies. This episode starts out at a point that doesn’t make any sense at all, where Kuro suddenly finds himself in the middle of a huge city, while in fact it turns out to be one huge illusion by this guy. It really increases the subtle paranoid level of this series: as long as the lizardman is around, you won’t know what’s real or not.

Ooh, and Kuromitsu showed herself, but she immediately leaves again after she saves Kuro. Her own agenda still remains a huge mystery at this point, but I think Kuro is somehow very much needed in it, so she wanted to make sure that he’d survive. How she knew where he was… the only explanation for that is that she’s been monitoring him from the beginning with the strange time stopping power of hers. It also turns out that she knows Sanniwa, suggesting that either Sanniwa was very old, or she and Kuro split ways more than just that time.

It’s also interesting that the story of the anime seems to diverge from the manga. I have no idea by how much this has happened since I’ve not read the manga, but it shouldn’t be too much of a problem as long as the creators know what they’re doing. This will of course only become clear in the final episodes, when everything in this series is supposed to come together. What the creators must make sure of is that they need to shed light on every mystery in that episode, and at the same time pull off a satisfying climax. Bringing back the godly animation of the first episode helps too.

Posted on 19 November 2008 with categories: Kurozuka



Short Synopsis: Kuro is brought to a cave where Kuromitsu is kept.
Highlights: Nice little bit of depth for Kuromitsu.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10 (Good)
If I had to pick one show out of the series that I’m blogging this season, where the decision to cover it on a weekly basis may not have been such a good idea, then it’d be this one. I’m happy that out of the shows I’m watching this season, none of them is mediocre or disappoints. The previous Spring- and Summer season really showed me that I’m not someone who enjoys blogging a bad or a dull show, and I think that if I didn’t decide on blogging stuff as Macross Frontier, Soul Eater, Allison to Lillia and Nijuu Mensou no Musume (God, I really picked the wrong series to blog back at the past spring-season), I’d think back to them with a lot less annoyance.

But anyway, I’m getting off-topic a bit with that. The thing with Kurozuka is that it exactly knows what it is and does: action, horror and eye-candy, and it does do that so well. The story isn’t anything special, but it knows exactly that it’s only second fodder in this series: it’s there to support the action, to prevent it from getting boring, to add a bit of intrigue and to provide enough settings where the animators can show off their talents. It’s nice and all, and I really like the end result, but really… there’s not much you can write about it on a weekly basis. ^^;

So yeah, this episode again was exactly what this series was about, and I like the little twist that it added, where Kuromitsu once cut off Kuro’s head. There’s this whole mystery around that woman that really keeps the story of this series flowing smoothly. Sanniwa (at least, that’s what I assume her name is) really is screwed by now, with nearly all of her subordinates killed off (at least, with so many dead bodies, I don’t think there are much more people left apart from Kuro&co). I liked that part that showed her, because it really adds to the characterization of this series, something that it had ignored a bit so far. ^^;

Posted on 12 November 2008 with categories: Kurozuka



Short Synopsis: Kuro and the others attempt to vend off the attack from the bad guys.
Highlights: Very nice mid-boss fight.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10 (Good)
Whoa, talk about the huge contrast with the relatively quiet previous episode. This episode just had one purpose: action, action and more action, and it did a really good job at that. So yeah, there isn’t much to say about this episode so this post is probably going to be rather short. I’m just a bit disappointed at the animation. Don’t get me wrong: it was of a very high quality in this episode, but I really hope that at least one episode in this series will return to the huge animation-quality of the first episode. Come on, Madhouse: you’ve made us hungry with that first episode, now provide something that at least comes close to it in terms of animation.

In any case, I must say that Kurozuka has become a pretty similar series to Ultraviolet: both are action-series with a plot that doesn’t try to be anything special, yet is fun to watch, both rely heavily on their style in their storytelling, both have similar character-designs in Kuromitsu and 044, and both make a lot of use of CG-overlays. I think the biggest difference between the two is that Kurozuka has a large animation-budget, while Ultraviolet had Osamu Dezaki.

Posted on 4 November 2008 with categories: Kurozuka



Short Synopsis: Kuro gets brought to the place where Kuromitsu is.
Highlights: Calm mood for a Kurozuka-episode, but still powerful.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10 (Excellent)
Ah, a build-up episode. The series takes a bit of time to catch a breath, and uses the time to give the viewer a few more glimpses of the major bad guys. The pacing in this episode was very slow, but like mentioned above, I really liked how it slowly progressed, while providing a bit more background on what happened between episode 2 and 3, and making the viewer anticipate when Kuromitsu might turn up again.

And of course, the visuals were better than ever in this episode. This also really was an episode in which the art director could go all out, and the number of beautiful and diverse sceneries he created is astounding. It’s interesting: while Porfy no Nagai Tabi still stands as the currently-airing series with the best outdoor background-art, Kurozuka definitely wins the fight in terms of indoor-background art. The use of CG really works, and it actually made a CG-car not look out of place somehow.

Anyway, about the plot, I think the first part of the episode showed the boss of the bad guys. I’m not exactly sure what he was doing, killing all these random people, and why he’s still doing that after centuries, but he seems to be after Kuromitsu, explaining the attack that started at the end of this episode. It looks like Kuro’s new allies allowed him to meet Kuromitsu again, and although I didn’t pick up the exact reason either, she seems to be vital for their survival as well. My guess is that it has something to do with how she turned Kuro into an immortal being.

For the next episode, I want to see the gorgeous animation from the first episode back. The animators have already shown that they don’t lack any sort of inspiration, but what really would make this series is the combination between the awesome art that this episode had, along with the detailed animation of the first episode. Now that would seriously rock.

Posted on 29 October 2008 with categories: Kurozuka



Short Synopsis: Kurou remembers what happened to Kuromitsu, and the story takes an interesting turn.
Highlights: Matrix, anyone?
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10
I remember that during the winter-season, I was very annoyed with Madhouse for some strange reason. If I recall correctly, then apart from Mokke and Ooedo Rocket, every of their recent series at that time had some sort of annoyance that brought it down: Dennou Coil and especially Saiunkoku Monogatari had their endless amounts of hiatuses, Shigurui and especially Claymore had their disappointing endings, Death Note was unbalanced, Kaiji dragged on and Devil May Cry, Maple Story, Nougami Neuro, Kaibutsu Ojou were just badly written.

And here I am right now, seeing them continue to churn out hit after hit, for three consecutive seasons. Is this really the same Madhouse we’re talking about? I’m not sure what happened, perhaps some high-ranked official found it a good idea to put more emphasis on quality and originality, perhaps it’s just chance, and they’ve chosen a string of excellent series to animate (in a way, it’s like Gonzo’s string of excellent series from 2006 till Summer 2007). In any case, whatever it is, I really appreciate it, and I hope that this string of excellent series will last as long as possible.

This episode of Kurozuka again adds a whole new dimension to the series. We learn that when the screen turns funky, it’s not simply because of the visual effects, but at that time Kurou can also slow down time significantly. We also learn that Kuromitsu has been kidnapped by the strange enemies, but the end of the episode reveals that it was Karuta’s allies that took her away, making this not just a story of good vs evil anymore. It does make me wonder why they were walking around in enemy-suits, though. And why the heck the enemy’s after them, and why they needed Kuromitsu in the first place.

One problem that I have with the series is that it’s aired a bit too soon after Ultraviolet. I just can’t help but think that Kuromitsu and 044 are alike: their character-designs are so similar, and Paku Romi uses nearly the exact same voice for them. She’s going to have to be fleshed out a bit more if she really wants to stand apart from her Ultraviolet-counterpart, especially since their roles seem to be completely different. Ultraviolet was a strong-minded killer on the run, while Kuromitsu feels more like a damsel in distress (please don’t let her end up captured for the rest of the series).

CHANGE USERNAME
Amagi
The only exceptions are series that had a bigger cast to begin with and exactly know what to do with them and give every single character specific, human traits. Kaze ga Tsuyoku or Bokura no are examples for that.
Amagi
Sad but not surprising that the Slime isekai is turning into another generic shitfest after a rather strong start. It should have been about Slime and the Dragon alone and those other isekaied humans later as well as world building I honestly can't care about the additions to the team at all. But it only proofs to me that series will always get worse the more characters are joining the team.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It does prompt me to read the manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Furryguy story got too many episodes. I surprisingly enjoyed the time travel one.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Hmmm, Phoneix, the 2004 series is the definition of a mixed bag, the first story gets gritty and bleak in a way that I liked but its the scifi stories I connect with best, the first one for its premise/set up and the second because the last part kind of hit me and seeing Rock, another Tezuka character cameoing in it was kinda cool.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Pluto will be something that'll definately hold up for me and i can see myself actually appreciating it more when I watch the eventual adaptation.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I guess I'm reading Adolf then after watching the phoenix anime.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm thinking more along the lines of wanting a full kare kano adaptation.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: And I'm not sure if my tastes would be the same now.
Anonymous3115199
Hope it gets a decent episode count that does it justice. Can't imagine it being another rushed 1 episode per volume adaptation.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: But I'm not sure if I'll catch the remake.I've already read the manga twice years ago and seen the original anime twice aswell.
Anonymous3115199
Fruits Basket. Now that's a name I've not heard in a long time. And it's a getting a remake next year that covers the whole manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I am old enough to remember watching 2 episodes of mysterious cities of Gold and one of battle of the planets aswell as the 90s gigantor.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I happy to see studios finally going back to adapt stuff that deserves adapting.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have also read angel no oka. Still haven't read Adolf or dororo.
Amagi
I can't wait for the Pluto anime (that was announced like a year ago?).
Kaiser-Eoghan
I won't spoil it, but MW had one cheeky ending that I loved.
Amagi
Well it pretty much is a ripoff of Kimba, I once thought people were joking until acrually googled it. Simba was even meant to be called Kimba at first IIRC.
Kaiser-Eoghan
A manga adaptation of mein kampf exists.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I used to joking argue with people when I was younger online about Disney ripping off Kimba.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've seen all the black Jack stuff, metropolis, I also read Book of human insects, Ayako, apollos song, MW, princess knight and some of ode to kirihito .
Amagi
I wish someone would animate Adolf one day. Or a proper adaption of Buddha.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I bring this up because somebody mentioned Phoenix when talking about Spirit circle.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I must confess to my eternal shame I have never seen Osamu Tezuka's phoenix apart from that one episode with the guy hallucinating that the robot girl was human.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Ah, to be more specific I meant in general.
Lenlo
Im with ya. If your talking about my comment on Ash's breakdown, im not saying I would have prefered to see it. I just think it did its job of disturbing the viewer well.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: I would rather the characters speak explicitly of certain things in banana fish, sometimes seeing everything isn't neccesary.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Perhaps we should race Yagate and Irozuku, see who's faster.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Niello: I've had it on hold for about 3 episodes , I'm waiting to see if it does anything before continuing, pretty show tho'.
Niello
It already passed the half way point but nothing happens in irozuku...nothing.
Amagi
Yeah I jsut read it in the thread. I love grandpa.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Seems like a big moment in Chi no Wadachi.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Someone is uploading translated pages of the new beastars chapter on 4chan.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I am behind on some shows, I'm not uptodate with Irozuku or Yagate.
Kaiser-Eoghan
More specifically, I would like a whole side story about old dude and lizard dude before they met Goblin slayer. Also later part of this episode was stressful, such as Priestess bit. I also like that this show isn't afraid to have its MC get their ass kicked.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There was an anime called ristorante paradiso where all the dudes were old.
Amagi
That reminds me that there actually exists an otome'ish pub VN in which every guy is older than 40. Well I have to admit it's at least setting itself apart from the dozens of male j-rock/pop bishounen harem guys VNs out there. Same with that Pigeon otome VN (yes it's actual pigeons).
Kaiser-Eoghan
Goodness, we could have a reverse harem anime called Amagi-san and the 7 battling ojisans =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I wish the geezer in Goblin slayer would have more to do.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Interesting how I hate certain genres, but when they're put through an exploitation lens I end up liking the genre, probably because it shits all over said genres while cutting out the boring parts.
Amagi
Yeah, same here. I also like it when stories are more mixed regarding age, general look, gender and such which is especially a problem in anime where you usually get 10 characters of the same gender, age and body type. Bonus if it's an idol show and they even have samefaces.
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
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