Posted on 26 December 2009 with categories: Anime Reviews, White Album



If you’re planning to watch the first season of White Album: good luck. Have fun sitting through one of the most frustrating series of the past years. However, for those who do manage to get through it there is a reward, because the second season is much, much better. In fact, it’s a breath of fresh air for both the harem and hentai game adaptation genre.

The first season really had no idea how to write good drama. It really tried, but revelations were poorly built up, the romance was shallow, and it used really cheap plot devices in an attempt to create drama (answering machine?!). Thankfully, Seven Arcs noticed this, and actually changed the directors, in favour of someone who did know what he was doing. The result really allowed this series to show the best of its daring premise.

The result managed to add depth to nearly all the characters. I really loved the execution of this series: a lot of bad stuff happens in this series, Touya for a large part is an incredible bastard who fools around with tons of women, however everything still progresses naturally: it never goes over the top or forces climaxes. Characters don’t suddenly turn emo because of one simple revelation, but what goes on inside their heads is much more complex than that. Every character has his or her own issues that get explored really well and the way that the creators manage to interweave all these stories is really skillfully done. There’s hardly any moment of boredom.

And then Touya. He really is one of the least likable lead characters after Makoto Ito, but in comparison to the latter he’s actually really well written and receives some memorable development. In fact, he’s so incredibly refreshing amongst most other harem leads with their wimpy and one-sided personalities. This guy’s issues are deep and yet they come together wonderfully at the end.

I really was prepared to hate this series when it first started, but it really proved me wrong when it improves on the first season in a lot of ways. It’s at times very emotional, but at the same time also very subtle and realistic. This really is everything I want romance to be, and it’s truly a leap forward for the harems and hentai game adaptations. If you’re tired of seeing the same thing over and over again in these genres, then this is a series that you should check out. However, be warned: it makes no attempts to make its characters easily likable. It’s realistic, but hard to get into as well.

Storytelling: 9/10 – Realistic, poignant, weaves many storylines into one and yet it progresses very naturally.
Characters: 9/10 – HUGE improvement over the first season. Touya is one of the best developed harem leads out there.
Production-Values: 8/10 – Better animation, great use of music.
Setting: 8/10 – Accurate and finally stops using it as a cheap plot device to get Touya and Yuki to miss each other.
Posted on with categories: White Album



You know what? I’m impressed. I’m fucking impressed by this ending. The way it wraps up so many plot threads, there’s a very good chance that it’s going to end up being the best ending of all the shows that end around these times. At the start of this series, I was expecting nothing other than a school days trainwreck ending. And yet here this show comes and does the exact opposite. Holy crap.

I love how the creators again did not try to end this show with a bang. There’s only one emotional climax in this entire episode: the point where Rina forces Touya to remember that what he forgot as a trauma, ten years ago. After that, Everything else follows naturally as he puts back the pieces of the puzzle that he once forgot. It’s basically a lot of exposition, but for Touya it makes perfect sense, now that he finally realized why he heck he turned into such a big player in the middle of this series. It’s a case where bullying went too far. Yuki actually tried to console him with a ribbon, but he threw it away. Haruka then picked up the ribbon, after Touya was scolded by his father and went back to search for it.

So as it turns out, the majority of White Album was just there, to get Touya to remember his past, and put aside his trauma. All of his actions don’t just stem from his loneliness created by how he was far away from Yuki, but instead out of escapism, created by that trauma. Influenced by both Yuki, Haruka and Menou at that time, he kept searching for his goddess, and never really found it. The way Touya healed in the final quarter of this series was also well built up. I think it started around the time that Mana left: it forced him to actually do something: get after Mana and instead stop running away. That time with Mana and after that Haruka really changed him.

Haruka breaking down in front of Touya’s door was of course a bit overdone, but with this revelation you can see that she’s not just another childhood friend who randomly falls in love with a harem lead (in the end, only Misaki took on that role), but rather, she too suffered from Touya’s trauma, and I can bet that she vividly remembered it: she had the ribbon to remind her of what happened. And with that, I can see why she fell for him in a moment of weakness. Menou in the end just turned out to be a girl who likes to fool around with guys. Touya was extra interesting for her because she met him when she was little. The reason she stayed with him was really because she liked him as a friend, rather than that she seriously had feelings for him. This rebellious way really comes from how she was raised: she resisted her strict mother, and because of that her mother became even stricter to Mana, who ended up listening to her mother and ended up studying really hard, to turn out about the opposite.

The iffy part of this episode was the performance, though. While the aftermath made sense and was interesting (Yuki and Rina finally got to work together as a duo, which takes care of the tensions between them of being competitions. And it’s not like everyone got a happy ending either: Rina’s brother still ended up in jail), but for a supposedly “perfect” idol, Rina’s English is pretty abysmal. And her showing up is also a bit hard to buy. Also, what happened with the animation in this episode? It’s back to the quality of the first season?

But really, it’s been a lot of fun to blog this series, even during the annoying times, there was tons to write about it. This ending also really showed that you don’t need to go over the top in order to create a great ending. White Album overall was a true breath of fresh air in both the harem and the hentai game adaptation genre. It for once took its time to give its male lead deep and memorable development, rather than just letting him be the same over and over again. Touya was a huge idiot throughout the majority of the series, but he could be one of the best developed harem leads out there. I would never have said this after finishing the first season, but I really hope that more series like this get made in the future.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 19 December 2009 with categories: White Album



Okay, so it indeed doesn’t look like this series is going for a School Days ending, but at this point, I honestly don’t care anymore. This episode was so emotionally moving, and the second season of White Album has just gotten better with every passing episode. At this point, I’m even sad that there’s only one episode left. I want more, dammit.

The dialogue in this episode was exceptionally well written. The way it carefully wrapped up, developed and progressed all of the different storylines in this series was really well done. Rina seems to have just lost her voice, but I really liked the subtlety with which she ended up dealing with it. In fact, the frail Yuki overreacted more than she did.

In the meantime, this episode also wrapped up Yayoi’s story, surprisingly. It had it coming, because she has been screwing and kissing Touya surprisingly little lately, and I really applaud the creators for letting it resolve itself very slowly, rather than just devoting an entire arc to her and wrap up everything that is about her in that arc.

I’m also really surprised at how much extra depth Mana and Menou’s mother has gotten through the past few episodes. She really seemed like your average uncaring mother, but the final quarter of this series made her a much more important character. Seriously though, at this pace White Album is well on its way to bombard itself into my top 3 favourite hentai game adaptations, along with Air and True Tears. The first season indeed drove me insane with the way it so annoyingly screwed up its potential, but for some reason the new director (yeah, apparently the first and second season have different directors) really changed the way this series worked, and instead of going for the cheap drama shots that the first season was full off, he continued the story with much more natural plot twists and developments.

Really, I think that if the director of the first season would have handled the second one as well, we indeed would have gotten this School Days ending. Under his guidance, everything probably would have gone to hell by now. I think that that’s also really nicely symbolized by that episode in which Touya buys himself his answering machine: it’s the new director’s way of saying: let’s develop the characters through their interactions, instead of these cheap plot twists.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 12 December 2009 with categories: White Album



I have no idea what exactly happened with this series. The first season was so incredibly cringe-worthy. And yet the second season is so good! It basically took everything that was good in the first season, and left everything that was bad behind. This episode yet again showed what a great series this turned into, both in terms of plot and romance.

Oh, and this show is so cruel in its cliff-hangers. I can’t believe it took me twenty-four episodes to figure this out. Every cliff-hanger makes you expect the worst, and yet in the next episode things progress naturally, rather than what people would be doing in a soap opera. Akira didn’t die, get into a coma, or anything. Instead, he just has to spend a few days in the hospital, and the development from this accident is mostly subtle, rather than really angsty and cheap. This episode too: Yuki walked in, in an emotional state, at Touya’s house. While he has Menou sleeping over. I was really looking forward to see how she’d react… and then the credits rolled. Even now, I have no bloody clue how the creators are going to progress this in the next episode. After all, we’ve only got two episodes left!

But yeah, this episode did mark the beginning of the end: you can see that the creators are working towards the ending of this series. The scandals surrounding Eiji (it was about his picture, wasn’t it?). It really looks like is agency is done for, and if this is the case then things are also looking pretty grim for Yuuki.

There are quite a few series that are going to end in the next two weeks. And really: aside from Aoi Bungaku, White Album’s ending is the one I’m looking forward to the most. Heck, I can’t help it. The build-up has been so good throughout the entire series. I have absolutely no idea how the creators are planning to end this thing. Out of all the upcoming endings, White Album’s is the biggest mystery to me. Again, aside from Aoi Bungaku, but that one’s special because I don’t even know what kind of stories it’s going to animate.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 5 December 2009 with categories: White Album



Okay. What the heck?

This episode had a very good chance to be among the best of this series yet. It was chock full of character-development, changing relationships, extra character-backgrounds, characters coming to realizations. Touya spinning even more out of control, and yet everything fitted. To think that Menou was the president’s daughter! That fully explains her rebellious attitude and it also gives a whole direction to Mana’s loneliness: she doesn’t just suffer from being neglected by her mother, but she also has to endure the fact that her older sister gets much more attention, because she just happens to be able to sing well.

Also, Akira and Misaki have finally broken up, which also really had it coming. Even though Touya tried to stay away from them, it was clear that Misaki still had feelings for him. She tried dating Akira, but in the end her feelings remain. Touya then obviously continues to screw even her. Or at least this is implied very heavily.

But yeah, we get more and more evidence that everything that made Touya the way he is stems from his childhood, and his relationship with his father. My guess is that the reason his father kicked him out of the house was in a desperate attempt to make him create his own happiness. It’s clear now that his father was very bad at raising his son: he wanted to reach out to him when Touya was feeling down, yet instead he tried making little girls do it.

But then, yeah. The cliffhanger. KANON-SPOILERS in the next paragraphs.

Akira… was hit by a car. Bloody hell, it’s now certain that the creators are planning to drop a bomb during the finale. I have to praise this show for really making me not suspect anything: even in retrospect, it came completely out of the blue: no shallow build-up or foreshadowing. But yeah: car accidents are always tricky to do. The question is: did the creators have a clear purpose for it. Are they going to use this to get the best out of the characters… or was this just a cheap death for extra melodrama.

I remember when Kanon pulled this, and I was reminded the most of that particular scene when Akira crashed down. In Kanon, it hardly served any purpose; it felt random and out of place, and just for the sake of a sad climax. This is pretty common in anime (or any other storytelling medium, I guess): We need extra drama! Let’s have a car run over someone!

These final episodes are really going to make or break this series. It’s been building up to this for so long, there had better be fireworks at that ending. What I want to see is total chaos that yet stays in canon with the rest of the series: I want melodrama that fits within the story without any cheap plot twists pulled solely for the purpose of extra drama. We’ve got Code Geass for that.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 29 November 2009 with categories: White Album



Aah, I’ve seen too many shallow anime. I really thought that Mana would break down in this episode, while in reality what got into her was just a short emotional outburst. This doesn’t turn out to be the case in which a bit of talking simply solves everything and magically develops characters in the right direction. Ah, I should have known!

But yeah, this was likely the best episode of White Album so far. Instead of a major climax for Mana, we get to see a major episode for Haruka, which really surprised me: paste that scene of her in any other series, and it would have ended up incredibly cheesy. Suddenly coming out of the shower naked in a desperate attempt… that’s so hard to prevent from turning into soap opera material, it needs lots and lots of build-up. But I think that White Album actually pulled it off. I feared for a moment, because Haruka’s earlier emotion breakdown made no sense whatsoever.

This episode really shed light into her character. Her scene was daring, but still subtle and nowhere over the top, and again it was more like an emotional outburst: after that she behaved completely normal again, rather than some angsty teen that refuses to listen to anybody. Then there’s also the matter of Touya, of course, who really doesn’t seem to know when to quit.

Also, what on earth could Menou be up to? How did she find out about Misaki, and why does she intend to make her seem like a slut? I know she’s rebellious and all, but to do that just to protect Touya seems a bit unnecessary.

With only four episodes left now, we’re about to get to the point where everything goes to hell. I really wonder how the creators are planning to end this. I mean, at this point they can indeed show what they’ve been promising us ever since Touya started screwing Yayoi, or they could play the gigantic troll that laughs over us by having a very mundane ending…
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 21 November 2009 with categories: White Album



Oh god, guess who’s back? The one guy who could only turn this into an even bigger drama than it already was. He’s changed a lot, though. He was this confident asshole, but now he’s more like a wimpy moron. However, the impression he left on Misaki remains.

In any case, this episode marks the beginning of the climax. My guess would be that the creators finally found it time to start with the drama, and my guess would be that each of the successive episodes will now deal with and close off the stories of the various characters. The one to kick off, is Mana.

So yeah, she’s been paying Touya out of her own pocket money to keep Touya with her. In this episode her mother finds out. Since this is the same mother that employs Touya, this also means that Mana figures out that Touya is working as Rina’s manager. In any case, Mana runs away from home, Touya figures that she might have gone back to Haruka (involving her back into the storyline), but at the end of the day, she’s still missing.

The next episode should give us a bit of a hint into exactly what kind of finale the creators are going for. In terms of Mana’s story, there’s no reason for them to hold back anymore: the next episode is going to climax her story, as Touya either finds her back, or she commits suicide or something else that’s crazy. I see no reason why the creators can just make this into a temporary climax, because running away from home is pretty radical: Mana’s mother now also has to see that something went wrong with the way she raised her daughter. She’s a smart woman, so she will learn from this incident.

Also, I loved that little scene in which Touya ran into the girl he stood up earlier. ^^;
Rating: * (Good)

Posted on 15 November 2009 with categories: White Album



Wait, he does it again? Holy crap, that bastard actually did it again! As if the situation he’s in isn’t bad enough already he decided to give the devil yet another one of his limbs. How much further is this going to escalate?

But yeah: screw the flawed first season. The second season did carry out many improvements. Especially the scene with Eiji and the paintings was just superbly directed, both in terms of art and direction. It definitely was the highlight for this series for me so far, and it really went out of its way to portray the insanity that’s going on inside Eiji’s mind, without cutting any corners.

But yeah, Touya. I’m starting to see where this series is trying to go to. In this episode, he hooks up with YET ANOTHER girl. Not only that, but he also stands her up in the middle of a date for Yayoi. I really hate Touya right now, but for once it’s in a good way: the way he’s portrayed as such an incredible bastard who just keeps running away from Yuki, fooling with every woman he can find. THIS is what School Days should have been. There were so many problems with School Days, but my biggest problem with it was that it didn’t seem to understand its characters: characters just randomly fell in love with Makoto without any possible reason. They acted conveniently like what the script wanted them to do. With White Album however, everything is well built up, and fits within the whole story. Or at least, that’s the case for the second season.

Also, that piano piece that plays during Eiji’s scene when he’s alone. Absolutely beautiful.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 8 November 2009 with categories: White Album



Um… what? What?!

I should have known. I should have bloody known. Don’t get me wrong, this episode wasn’t exactly bad. The creators just did it again: as if the current storyline wasn’t already screwed up enough: the long-haired singer girl starts flirting with Touya. Technically though: I can’t fault this series: it was well built up, they both have their reasons (they both want to run away and ended up flirting with the nearest person possible, and just happened to be at the right time and place that made sense in the overall storyline), but holy crap. It’s a good thing that Haruka and Mana are taking a break or else all hell would really break loose. However, that eventual climax seems to be even more disastrous at this point.

But yeah, as much as I hate to admit it: the second season of White Album is actually pretty good. The first season definitely had its issues, mostly introducing pointless angst and emo. In the second season however, the angst is anything but pointless. In this episode, Yuki broke down crying, but who can fault her? She just found out that her boyfriend has been deceiving her with her best friend. It feels like something out of a bad soap opera, but it’s actually well built up. If you take everything that happened in the first season into account, this had to happen. Can this series still be called bad? In fact, I’m actually glad that we might get a School Days-like ending that doesn’t feel forced and instead consists out of genuine drama, and that doesn’t get bogged down by a terrible script, character-development or pointless fanservice.

Out of all eroge adaptations I watched, this one has the most realistic animation and quiet parts. As much as I hate to admit it, this series can only be seen as a step forward in this genre that lives off seeing who rip each other off the most.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 31 October 2009 with categories: White Album


Touya… Touya… Touya. What the heck do you think you’re doing? Every time you think this bastard couldn’t possibly surpass himself… he does. WTF.

In any case, let me start with summarizing the major flaws that made the first season so unbearable:
– The set-up itself: how the heck do all these five girls pick Touya of all people to fall for. However, you can’t hold this against the second season, as it’s already part of its premise.
– The huge amount of drama that resulted in people who kept missing each other. This doesn’t return in the second season.Touya bought an answering machine, and he and Yuki actually meet a lot.
– The huge contrast between the drama: it was either incredibly subtle, or totally not. And really, the second season has been much better balanced in terms of drama.

yeah, as much as I hate to admit it: this was a really emotional episode. For the first time in this series, I really felt along with the characters, without being hampered by angsty melodrama getting in the way. The drama was definitely heavy (I mean, Touya kissed two girls WHO WEREN’T YUKI), but it felt much more heartfelt than anything I’ve seen in that first season. Am I going crazy?

Yuki.. finally she too gets suspicious of Touya, thanks to a major screw-up that he made. Or rather, two. First of all, he flaps out about how he’s been meeting Yayoi. Nice one there, dude. On top of that, when Yuki proposes to go and see Rina together. Touya declines and says that he’s got enough to do. ONLY TO SEE RINA THAT DAY, AND KISS HER. Holy crap, what an asshole. On top of that, he also starts ignoring Yayoi, even after Yuki already left, which also puts him on bad terms. Not to mention that some mysterious dude has photographs of the two hitting it off together.

I really feel like this episode was the beginning of the end. And someone shoot me: I’m beginning to like this series again!!
Rating: ** (Excellent)

CHANGE USERNAME
Lenlo
Ground*. I hate it when I fat finger something.
Lenlo
Thats always the worst, when a story starts off promising and then someone runs it into the grouhnd
AidanAK47
@Mario, so it's still at it. To me it's like someone was given an interesting story and made it his mission to ruin it as much as possible.
SuperMario
@Aidan: it's still the same crap. I have a feeling that Sagrada Reset gives a middle finger to us viewers. The plot with development and characters that we have no way to figure out ourselves. The characters who change motive and even personality after each timeline. The main lead girl who act like a robot. I gave this show too many chance so I won't bother to spend more time watching it.
Anonymous1052767
Eromanga sensei
AidanAK47
@Mario, Oh ho, what was the dealbreaker? Just that it didn't change or did something really stupid happen?
SuperMario
Sagrada Reset (long sigh) (scratching my head) (eyes rolling). Dropped
AidanAK47
Hey you.
Konstantinos
Yeah, at this point, this season looks good.
SuperMario
Quite happy with ID-0 and Zero in particular. Zero charms me to no end that I'm still debating whether I should blog it. The trio Re:Creators, Kado, Atom still doing pretty well and the sequels MHA and Bahamut are enjoyable as expected. We have a wide range of anime offerings this season.
SuperMario
Sagrada Reset & SukaSuka I will give it another episode, at least until this current arcs over. They both have potential but Sagrada Reset tries so hard to sound smart, and SukaSuka still falls into its LN tropes which bugged the show down.
SuperMario
*no real urge
SuperMario
I've finally catch up with all other series I wanna follow this season. Alice & Zorouku will be off my list for now, Zorouko is a great character but everything else falls flat so far. I have real urge to continue Attack on Titan and Berserk so I'll wait until they're finished.
Vonter
I watched some episodes of KonoSuba yesterday, reminds me of Those Who Hunt Elves. And I suppose it might be an easy recommendation because it mainly comes down to; do you find it funny? or fun? If not, skip.
Kaiser-Eoghan
While yes its true of watching those slice of life shows week by week is better, I felt that when reading the manga for Aria it was easier to marathon by reading it rather than watching.
SuperMario
Flying witch have the same atmosphere, but it's a purely slice of life anime. I love Aria too and I agree that watching it 1 episode a time is the best way to enjoy it. Can't think of other serious anime that have those calming elements for now
Anonymous1042537
Yeah, I noticed they all have pretty different structures from one another (ACCA's political, Mushishi's naturalistic, Monster is a thriller, Rakugo's about a specific art form, 3-gatsu is ostensibly about Shogi, etc.) but I found that I found some similar calming elements in them (to different degrees of course).
Anonymous1042537
Thanks, I'll definitely check Aria out!
AidanAK47
One of the hardest shows to marathon besides Bakemonogatari. Though Bakomono gave me a headache after a few episodes whereas Aria just had me so mellow that I could drift into sleep at any second.
AidanAK47
Don't know if you could call it a sub genre as the examples you listed are all really different from each other.
Though in the vein of calming shows I think you can add the Aria series to the list. That show is so relaxing that you find yourself nodding off to it. Not out of boredom but it just has that effect on you.
Anonymous1042537
Do you guys know if there's a specific subgenre like this, or am I making it up? And are there other anime with that kind of feel. Not exactly slice of life, but in the general vicinity of it.
Anonymous1042537
The Great Passage was another great example. It delved into the seemingly boring subject matter of dictionary-making, but it was a surprisingly charming show. 3-Gatsu no Lion also looks promising, I enjoyed a lot of the first season (but wasn't a fan of the forced comedy sometimes).
Anonymous1042537
Like the episode where Tenma first meets Grimmer on the train to Prague and they have a picnic on the mountain was so dang good. I really need to rewatch that.
Anonymous1042537
There are some elements of that style in other shows too, but to a lesser extent. Like some parts of Rakguo (mainly season 1) was very soothing. Naoki Urasawa's Monster had some fantastic, almost melancholic episodes like this.
Anonymous1042537
It seems that most anime w/ that kind of style usually also have another genre mixed in. Mushishi was also very naturalistic, ACCA had a political underpinning.
Anonymous1042537
It's sort of in the vein of a "Mushishi" style show. I suspect it's an emerging subgenre of slice of life that's meant to be very calming, relaxing, atmospheric which I really am digging.
Anonymous1042537
I really hope there are more shows like it; not that it was perfect, but it was certainly unique and hit a lot more than it missed. I really like those cool, quiet shows you can enjoy with a nice cup of tea before you go to sleep.
Anonymous1042537
Ironically though, I would say that the first half of ACCA (up until the big flashback) is better enjoyed week by week, or at least that's what I found.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: It felt good marathoning a show again rather than waiting week by week and next weekend I'll probably marathon house of five leaves.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Forgot to mention...there were certainly a share of moments in Acca that feel fanservish to the female audience =P
SuperMario
@Aidan: haven't noticed that. Will fix it soon.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Only problem I can see is that the posts have no spaces in between paragraphs.
SuperMario
... to be near my laptop for an entire week. First time that I had to blog entirely through my phone. Seemed to work out fine but I had to borrow screenshots from other source (I thank you that other source) ^^
SuperMario
*unless* rather than *as long as*. This has been a crazy week for me as I didn't have a chance
SuperMario
@anon1039488: I find the idea of limiting excess to exclusively stream an aime is a dumb idea; because as long as people have a chance to expose to the anime they won't really care to check it out. So I detest owning the legal streaming account, but I always pay back by buying DVDs/Blurays that I liked
SuperMario
I watched House of Five Leaves by the same mangaka and I really enjoyed it. Nataume Ono is a pretty excelent storyteller (a bit mixed on her art-style thou)
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I agree that the first dew episodes of ACCA were not that engaging but the endingg neatly tied up all loose ends. I still feel Grossular's act is kind of messy (why was he under such control from Lilium? He's not that kind to be in such passive role to be honest) but other than those I don't have any real complaints.
Anonymous1039488
Competition is good, but it makes it cost so much to legally watch everything. That's why a lot of people pirate I feel.
Anonymous1039488
You have Crunchryoll and Funi, fine. Then there's Daisuki which is kinda random. Then Amazon, Netflix, and Hulu all have some random anime, though it seems that mainly Amazon has current series
Anonymous1039488
I don't have Amazon Strike, which is like their new venture into anime I guess. There's too many streaming services to keep up with tbh
Kaiser-Eoghan
To be honest I'm pretty crap when it comes to supporting things, I don't pay for almost all the things I watch/read/play, I don't have a crunchy or amazon account, I still pirate legal streams.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: Is it a case that your country is blocked? Maybe go for a vpn? If you absolutely have to you could pirate the show...
Anonymous1039488
I wanna watch Re:Creators but don't have Amazon... :( alas
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel like I need to wait and see approach with sekaisuru Kado...this prologue phase is...long...
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wish it had been 24 episodes long though to better organize itself.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Favourite characters were Jean, Groslur and Nino.
Can’t say I cared for the goofy interactions between Jean’s workfriends though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Yet for whatever I could say about the pacing, when the twists happen they creep up on you and the show mostly lands every one of them, even if I’m not exactly pleased that sometimes the series does the “I pulled it out of the hat/ass” approach.
I’m relatively indifferent on the art/animation.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I did feel it picks up, improves by the mid-mark and to an extent the wait is worth it and things do come together even if I wasn’t always totally confidant with how it was getting there.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Having the protagonist go from district to district to flesh out the settings a decent enough idea and the main characters a fairly chill, cool guy.
Though the dialogue does create suspicion, intrigue, it does also plod/pad in equal measure at times.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Finally decided to sit down and watch Acca.
This show had its lovers/haters I’m sure, having watched it my feelings are mixed.
It is a slight breath of fresh air I’ll give it that and makes me want to maybe re-assess of adaptations of the author’s work.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: The only assayas film I've encountered so far that I disliked was Irma Vep, even though the lead actress was great, the surrounding performances, especially by Jean-Pierre-Lenaud were awful. Sils Maria I was initially evasive of because I'd heard that the relationship between Binoche and Stewarts characters was under-unexplored.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Weersathakul's films are something else entirely...Otherworldly yet still cinematic. I feel a bit underwhelmed after watching the Unknown girl. The identity of the culprit, for example, feel forced for me that take me out our their naturalistic style. I'mmin between Clouds of sils maria too, know it's a good movie but it feels pretentous at times, like the movie Youth
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I also got round to watching Unknown girl by Dardenne, it carries enough moments of their brilliance but I felt they didn’t have as much mastery over their usual pacing style this time round, for the first time it felt like a thriller that played out like a drama, rather than a drama that has a pseudo thriller feel to it.
Going to watch Clouds of sils Maria next.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: The entire second half, which I’d have watched an entire film about is very atmospheric and dreamy/esoteric nearing just exactly the kind of thing I like.
The way he uses/shoots Thailands geography along with his cinematography is impressive, particularly in that second half.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: He shoots something simple like a chopping scene in a strangely engaging way, the scene with the old woman going into the cave is also very impressively shot and that one driving scenes with that pop song in the background has an airy feel to it.
In some ways I agree that there’s a bit of sensuality to it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: It’s the kind of film that feeling tired/relaxed when watching it isn’t a condemnation of it(although a share of moments in the first half could be patience testing), it’s the sort of film where you aren’t really aware of anything outside of watching the film when you watch it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I finally looked into a Weersathakul film, Tropical Malady. I don’t even know how to give a star rating for this film.
SuperMario
I'm still on the fence with Alice & Zouroku. Like the title suggests, the warm chemistry between those two are its strongest point, but those moments are far and few in between as the story progresses and I don't care one bit about the Red Queen storyline. I might drop this one if the story doesn't improve
SuperMario
@Lenlo: 3 episodes anf Berserk still hasn't grabbed me as much. Yep facial expressions are really off-putting
Lenlo
Man... the facial expression in Berserk for the 3D models are, ever so slowly, killing me.
AidanAK47
Alright. Tommarrow I will get out all those posts I am late on seeing as the impressions are all finished.
AidanAK47
SukaSuka still has me mixed. On one hand there really are some great ideas and some well executed moments. But some of the dialogue is a bit typical of a light novel and the fanservice is really shameless. The massage at the end of the episode was something the show could really do without.
Konstantinos Travlos
I am in love with RE:Creators. I have no idea if they will keep it as good, but these two first episodes did all the right things.
AidanAK47
Alright, Easter made me lazy so it's time to play catch up.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Puran: Or even Georgiou Nikolaidis while I'm at it, morning patrol is a great mood piece. Not familiar with the other guy.
Puran
@Kaiser: No Grammatikos recommendation? :)
SuperMario
I still enjoy Zero pretty much. I like the contrast between the beastfallen and Zero. The hilarious lines sound more like accidental to me, not the best product but I enjoy the ride so far
SuperMario
@Kaiser: agree with everything you said. Apparently Haneke put Flashmob on hold because the main actress was conflicting in her schedule, so he decided to do Happy End instead
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Does the old man represent gritty anime of old? I don't know honestly I'm just throwing it out there.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: In case you hadn't heard, Haneke dropped the Flashmob movie and is now doing one about the refugee crisis.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: To whoever will be playing Godard in that biopic, I'd wonder if they could capture how incredibly douchey he sounds irl lol
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: There is such a big divide between 50s/60s Bresson and 70s/80s Bresson.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Lathimos and Avaranas remind me in an odd way of Tarr in that they're the only Greek filmakers people seem to talk about , Check out Koundorous and Theodorous Angelopolous' works if you can.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Meh, I don't like that sort of overly on the nose social commentary some American films and tv shows do in recent years.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Godards extremely hit or miss with me. Hazanavicius did the artist I think, but I'd sooner recommend Biancnieves as a stronger example of a modern take on silent cinema or maybe a Guy Maddin film.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Lotznitza directed a gentle creature not Zvyagintsev, though the latter is a fantastic director, Leviathan's ending hit me very very hard, its gut punching and I appreciated that the return never went into too much detail regarding the father.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: off topic, I didn't realize Get Out having such buzz reception. It's coming here next week so I will get to watch it
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Michel Hazanavicius makes a biopic about Jean-Luc Godard and Anne Wiazemsky (the actress in Au Hasard Balthazard), which I think will be interesting. I considered The Lobster one of the best film out of that year so I anticipate his next movie a hell lot. Yep, I watched few movies from Andrey Zvyagintsev and he certainly is in my radar. Bleak, social commentary, technical impressive
AidanAK47
Oh, it's confirmed that was what was actually said in Japanese. Well...that's rather cringe worthy.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Can't say I am too fond of it myself. Though that arrow to the knee reference definitely sounds like something the translator added in.
Anonymous1026829
Holy shit Zero is hilarious. "I used to be a mercenary like you once. But then I took an arrow to the knee." "My magic is super weak so I need a powerful offering. Can you loan me your head please?" The comedy is so pointed and understated.
Vonter
I do like how contrasting Zelda is to Nier in the sense that. Zelda cares more about how the game plays and making the player have fun constantly but doesn't care about telling something. Nier Automata doesn't care what it throws to the player but cares a lot about it tells the things that happen to player.
Vonter
I think this is a hard game to score. Mainly because IMO the combat has wear out a bit do to the repetition and the sidequests have been a mixed bag with some being relevant to the plot or themes and some being just fodder to level up. On the other hand the game has a lot of implications, subtext and symbolism that so far has been enriching to reflect upon.
AidanAK47
@Vonter, Actually wrote up 4/5s of a review on Nier Automata but with the new season I haven't had time to finish writing the review. Though my thoughts on it are similar to yours.
Vonter
Nier Automata has a 10+ hour prologue. So far the game feels like it's more interested in delivering strong emotions than a compelling narrative, not that script is poor but seems disjointed in a way, circling around the themes of existentialism, purpose and truth without overexpositing about these things. It also some moments remind me of Fragile Dreams. Like the despair.
AidanAK47
The old man is the one I can't pin down. Been thinking he might represent the kind of anime that's critically lauded but sadly unpopular. Makes sense as he's one of the few on the opening that doesn't stand near ads for his anime. Or else he's a live action drama representative.
AidanAK47
Been wondering about the Re:Creators characters. We got the obvious representatives from Magical girl, Mecha, Light novel and video game. The knight girl looks like clear homage to Saber from Fate so a Visual novel representive? The psycho girl looks to be a chunni anime representative. And the guy who appeared at the end of ep 2 is clearly Shounen.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: The Ramsay one sticks out as the most interesting to me as does the lathimos one. I'm curious about that Russian one about the woman looking for her imprisoned husband as I'd like to watch more contempory Russian films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: If you can get passed the accents Ramsay did a strong piece of social realism in the 90s called Ratcatcher.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I think the only Baumbach film I've seen is Frances Ha and I liked the new wavey feel it had. With The lobster and re-watching dogtooth I was able to get into Lathimos' pitch black humour alot more. I've never actually seen a hong-sang so film.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, I still really enjoy it but I do get what you mean. Looking at the series overall so far it does feel like there was lost potential.
Amagi
I honestly still don't know what to think of LWA. I wasn't a fan of the formularic first half but the second half doesn't really catch me either. I loved the first OVA though.
AidanAK47
Well I will be damned. That G Koh commenter managed to predict the inclusion of Yggdrasil in Little Witch Academia. Nicely done.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: sadly i won't make it this year. I wanna try the Toronto International Film Fest next time whenever I have a chance
SuperMario
@Kaiser:you heard about this year's Cannes selection?Overall it's solid, not many that scream "masterpiece" for me.Overall I'm exciting for Hong Sang Soo's new movies (he has 2 movies screening at Cannes and 1 already aired at Berlin.What the hell),and The Killing of the Scared Deer(Yorgos Lnthimos), You were never really here (Lynne Ramsay),Okja(Bong Joon Ho) and Meyerowitz Stories(Noah Baubach)
Kaiser-Eoghan
Hmmm...just found out That Blame! 2017 is being done by a the Ajin director, not sure how I felt about that.
AidanAK47
Think this is the best time to end the series too as the difficultly was getting to be a bit too cheap.
AidanAK47
Lore wise it's pretty disappointing. Ending the game with an enemy that doesn't really have that much relevance. But Gameplay wise it was excellent. The final area was just beautiful.
Lenlo
Ringed City was a great piece of DLC and a good way to end the series imo.
AidanAK47
Dark souls sure can give you workout. Finally got around to finishing the ringed city DLC. Funny thing is that people were raving about how hard Midir was when I didn't have that much trouble with him. Gaol gave me some trouble but I managed it. Hardest was the demon prince and god I hate multi stage boss fights. Such a goddamn pain.
SuperMario
Atom still waiting for suitable subs. I swear to God, for a completist like myself the wait is unbearable, especially it should've been available already
HelghastKillzone
Yes it is.
Anonymous1020539
I mean...
Anonymous1020539
Re:producers is really great
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: I can see myself chancing more of it, I kind of caught into its rhythm a bit.
AidanAK47
Novels are actually really short. About 90 pages long per volume. They really could cover this in a single cour.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, SukaSuka? From what I could tell it covered the first two chapters of the light novel. Each novel has 5 chapters. Though the first and last chapter are more of a prologue and epilogue respectively.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Actually if shuumatsu's first episode is going faster than the novel, roughly how much so? Its still obviously a slow burn in animated format but how much was covered in episode 1?
AidanAK47
Could have done without the huge infodump but otherwise still loving Re:Creators. Seeing a magical girl shocked over her own level of destructive power was great.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Eh, I liked the use of music early on in shuumatsu and theres a good mood set up early on along with a good opening scene but the later parts of the episode except maybe for the after credits bit get a shrug from me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Kado has made its hook, now it needs not to keep holding its cards and get going.
SuperMario
hmmm, don't know what to think about Kado ep2. Still good but I expected more
SuperMario
But really my mentality is that this site comes first. Getting more traffic and improve the site are my top priorities, then "what I wanna do for myself" comes later
SuperMario
@Travlos: guess you won't have to read me this season :). Haven't checked out the last episode of Kado yet but based from the first 2 episodes I think you'd enjoy that show.
Don’t worry. It’s something Aidan and me both agree on. We pretty much write for ourselves, otherwise we couldn’t have stayed this long. I get a chance to go off track once in a while to write something I wanna write.
Konstantinos Travlos
@SuperMario. I am definitely watching Shingeki no Koyjin 2, Shingeki no Bahamut 2, Re:Creators, Little Witch Academia, and probably Kado and Zero Kara. I may also do Zipang this season.
On the reaction reaction. What you say is ok. But remember, a hobby is something you do for yourself. There is a limit to how much you should care about the views of others. :)
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Or if I can use a quote from Chang from Black lagoon : "A fragranced shit will forever still retain the smell of shit"
Lenlo
As most likely the biggest Berserk fan in this chatbox, its better but that doesnt make it good. Spraying fabreeze on crap doesnt make it any more appealing. Yet I will watch it anyways.
Anonymous1018231
You don't even know
Anonymous1018231
Lies Aidan it is soooo much better
Anonymous1017807
Tbh I'm enjoying Alice to Zouroku so much simply because I identify with the old guy's no-nonsense attitude. It's fun to see the annoying loli get put in her place. X.D
AidanAK47
Anyway Bam is supposed to be covering it. Seeing as he covered the first season.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I watched the first episode of the second season. Better? Yes, but only slightly.. It has all the same problems as the first season.
Anonymous1017501
and nobody's covering it lol
Anonymous1017501
Like dramatically
Anonymous1017501
It really is much better
Anonymous1017501
You know guys its not too late to start watching Berserk Season 2...
AidanAK47
I just get annoyed when interaction is like "HUMAN, YOUR EMOTION RESPONSE IS DIFFERENT. I THEORIZE THIS IS THE REASON YOUR EMOTIONAL RESPONSE IS DIFFERENT."
Their is a definite layer of pretentiousness in how it's written, seeing how nobody gets annoyed when every character tries to psychological profile them.
AidanAK47
@Mario, I have heard word that these two episodes were a prologue story and the real story is going to kick into gear next episode. But if the characters keep talking like this then it's not going to matter what happens. It will just be terrible.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Jojo part 5 died for this. That makes it all the sadder. Plus it's two cour so this show is gonna be on for half a year.
SuperMario
Being said all that I will follow it for 1 more episode
SuperMario
And then that girl who passed away because of the reset. I feel my emotions drying up at that point. Tasteless. Heartless
SuperMario
Wanna say the same thing regarding Sagrada Reset as well. I have the feeling the show tries to sound smart that ultimately if I hear someone talks like this in real life, I would go punch his face. Manipulating the social worker by slitting your own wrist? WHAT? Asking a girl about her rules, then whenever she answers you give your own warped opinions on it to sound like you know it all? WHAT
Anonymous1016169
@Aidan: Lol, Sagrada reminds me of how I used to write. Pretentious, overly complex dialogue that nobody would use in real life unless they were trying too hard. It grits on my ears so much that I don't think I can keep watching it, especially because this is probably how it's going to be for the whole series.
Anonymous1016169
@Amagi: I feel your pain. I used to enjoy those types of shows, but I've found more and more since getting out of high school that they just make me want to take a nap. It doesn't help that they're everywhere. X.D
AidanAK47
God Sagrada Reset is frustrating. So many good ideas, all absolutely ruined by the dialogue and characters. If you just changed the dialogue a bit and made the characters emote more then this would be so very interesting. But they manage to drain the life out of the story.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, in most cases you can easily write off the ones not worth your time based on the summery. Occasional those kinds of show can turn out to be worth watching but it just doesn't happen often enough.
Amagi
Nothing against those types of anime in general, but it's just not aimed at me I guess. - I also should specify: school (semi)harem, not school alone. I enjoy Tsuki ga Kirei.
Amagi
I really love this season but I should stop testing the school- and shoujo stuff. It's almost never worth the time and it always bores me so much that I have to stop watching anime for a few hours.
Anonymous1016169
@Travlos: Why does a hobbyist artist care when someone critiques their art or a fanfic writer care about reader feedback? When you do something you enjoy, it's normal to want to improve and other people's opinions are important for that.
SuperMario
@Travlos: because 1) We still need to listen to what readers say to improve and 2) we're debating more about rating system, which I also feel the need of upgrading. btw, any shows that catch your interests so far this season?
Konstantinos Travlos
Why do you guys care about what someone thinks about your reviews? You are doing a good enough thing as is, and t is a hobby. Do your thing and do not lose time on this.
Anonymous1015915
I think I'm just gonna follow sukasuka and re:creators this season. Seem to of shown the most potential universally.
Anonymous1015442
Soy and almond milk are also available as alternatives for the lactose intolerant.
Anonymous1015442
From the manga it seems like it would translate well into an anime with the right production values so I think I'm going to try it. I was mostly concerned that they'd push the melodrama even more through the roof, haha. I did see some of the reviews on it here and they made me hopeful that it was fairly well-executed.And of course the milk can be chocolate. Just not vanilla, vanilla milk is yuck i
Lenlo
Its certainly making me happy I waited until the end of the season to binge it.
SuperMario
I'd have the milk as well... Need more milk to my life.
SuperMario
Hope Scum's Wish entertains you, Lenlo. ^^
Lenlo
I will say the sound design has been great for Scums Wish though I have not read the manga to see how it matches up
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