Posted on 18 September 2009 with categories: Anime Reviews, Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



One thing I love about watching anime is that sometimes, there are these series that come from absolutely nowhere and blow you away. Tokyo Magnitude is one of those series. It’s based on a “what-if” scenario: what if modern-day Tokyo were to be hit by a massive earthquake? This actually is a very likely scenario: it turns out that there is a 70% chance that Tokyo will be hit by an earthquake of magnitude 7.0 in the next 30 years.

Tokyo Magnitude shows that even in the city that is probably the most well-prepared city for an earthquake, it would still be plunged into chaos if an major earthquake actually were to take place. Tons of people would end up either dead or injured, even more people would lose their homes. The creators end up portraying this sense of chaos and despair incredibly well.

The series follows three people in particular: two siblings Mirai and Yuki and an adult called Mari, however that doesn’t stop the creators from showing how everyone else is doing. They make really well use of their budget to create an identity for every single passer-by: they take care in emphasizing that every single person in the background was also just a regular person who also was hit by the earthquake, who also may or may not have lost someone, or might be separated from his or her loved ones. This series really managed to create a setting that feels real, in which just about everything is filled with details that make the setting come alive. Figuratively, of course.

The first half of the series is mainly this, while the second half, in which the chaos tones down a bit, changes the direction of the setting in a character-study of the lead characters. I’m not going to spoil exactly what happens, but both halves are equally bittersweet. You do need to know that the second half does this at the sacrifice of a bit of realism, though. The second half is much quieter in comparison to the chaotic first half, but that really allows the plot to be very subtly developed, and the emotions to sink in.

The biggest flaw of this series is a little disclaimer at the start of each episode, which claims that this series is as realistic as possible. While this series is indeed very realistic (more realistic than like, 98% of all other anime out there), there are points that could not have happened in real life. Besides, it’s a rather pretentious disclaimer anyway: instead of telling us it’s realistic, we’d rather like to be able to judge ourselves.

Nevertheless, at this point Tokyo Magnitude has the potential to remain a classic in anime. It’s believable, depressing, but also uplifting, fresh and inspired. There’s been a lot of discussion going on whether or not this series took the right turns along the way, but personally for me, it has been an amazing series. Most people who know this blog will know that I’m already a big fan of the Noitamina timeslot. Aside from Honey and Clover, I’ve seen every single show that came out of it, and Tokyo Magnitude has become my favourite series out of all of them.

Storytelling: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 9/10
Setting: 10/10
Posted on with categories: Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



Haha! Another show with a very satisfying ending. This episode was bittersweet, and I think that everyone who managed to keep his/her suspense of disbelief is going to find it an excellent conclusion. In this episode, Mirai comes to terms with what happened to Yuki, she meets her parents, and attempts to continue her life. While most conclusions in anime are a bit lackluster, this episode was in no way inferior to the rest of this amazing series.

But damn, I don’t think that I’ve ever had such a heated discussion going on as for the past few episodes. Personally though, I wasn’t bothered by Mirai’s hallucinations. Instead, I just see this series as fiction, with a very high degree of believability. For me, there were only three points that seemed forced: Mari who just happened to run into her co-worker as she collapsed, the point where Mirai was trying to save the trapped robot and nearly died herself, and the point at which Tokyo Tower nearly collapsed on Mirai but Yuki managed to save her. Nevertheless, in any other show this would just be anal nitpicking.

Thinking back though, the whole Yuki vs. Mirai relationship seems to be much deeper than I originally thought. I mean, we all thought that this would be a series in which the initially bratty Mirai would grow up and take care of her brother. However, this happened already in the second episode. After that, these whole themes reversed, and it was actually Yuki who took care of Mirai; it could be seen as his way to repay Mirai for saving him, he kept her out of danger, he saved her from the Tokyo Tower and the accident with the falling robot. He was the one who tried to cheer her up when she was feeling down.

And even when he died, his hallucination continued this trend: he safely guided her back home, and slowly tried to make her understand that he died. The question remains of course, what the real intention from the creators was. Was the Yuki meant to be taken as symbolism, something like a guardian angel, or did Mirai subconsciously create something that would guide her back home safely until she would be out of danger? Are those options realistic? Nah, not really. Are they believable? For me, they are.

It’s always a bit of a gamble for a series to go into a different direction. The first half of this series was clearly different from the second, as this series changed from a detailed look at how a major city reacts after being hit by a major earthquake, to a character-study of Mirai. In my opinion, these changes can work as long as the new direction has enough to offer, which was definitely the case with this series for me. It was a nice gamble in any case: if the creators would just have continued with the same direction as the first half, we definitely would have gotten a more realistic end, but at the same time, I don’t think that it would have been as memorable of an ending as right now.

Also, on a side-note: I love how the creators actually spent time in creating distinct character-designs for Mirai and her family throughout the years, rather than simply being lazy and just creating a bunch of mini-versions of their characters, like a lot of anime seem to do. Very nice.

Overall, Tokyo Magnitude, as amazing as it was, didn’t end up being my favourite series of 2009. Birdy the Mighty Decode in the end was better for me. It however has a good chance of showing up in my top 5 for this year, unless a lot of really good shows shows happen to air in the upcoming Autumn Season. But for now, let’s just assume that that won’t happen.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Posted on 12 September 2009 with categories: Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



Oh my god. This episode was just… incredible. It’s because of episodes like this that I still remain a fan of anime, even after watching hundreds of series. It’s series as this one that just keep me coming back, and make it all worth it.

The way this episode played out… it just allowed for the best way to show Mirai coming to understand that her brother is actually dead. We knew this for a few episodes by now, so it wasn’t the revelation or shock of his death that made this episode so powerful, but instead it was just Mirai’s character who carried this entire episode. Yuki’s illusion started to waver when Mirai met Yuki’s best friend. I think that at first, she was unconsciously confusing the two boys with each other, and therefore didn’t see the two of them at the same time at first, but eventually she did start talking to Yuki once she got used to his friend being there.

The sad thing wasn’t just Mirai realizing the death of her brother, but rather the subtle differences between the dead Yuki and the remains of the real Yuki: the things he wrote and did when he was still alive. It was really heart-wrenching to see how Mirai unconsciously tried to fit in her image of Yuki with the things he did, still refusing to admit that he was dead.

Whether or not this is realistic, I don’t know. I’m not a psychiatrist, I can only relate to what sounds plausible to me. Still, at the same time that doesn’t mean that there’s no gray area. Anime for me has always been a combination between fiction and realism, with the more realistic, or I guess that “believable” is the better word, usually being the most enjoyable for me.

A slightly spoilerific example, but excellent to illustrate the decision of the creators to insert a not-so-realistic plot twist in this series is Porfy no Nagai Tabi. It’s in many areas similar to Tokyo Magnitude: both feature two siblings, caught up in an earthquake, both feature a lot of realism, both involve travelling to get back to a family member you’ve been torn apart from, and both have females who were left with mental illnesses after the quake (in Porfy’s case, Mina loses all of her personality and memory).

Anyway, Porfy no Nagai Tabi was also incredibly realistic. Perhaps even more than Tokyo Magnitude because its length is nearly five times larger. However, when the final arc starts, a plot twist happens that’s in no single way realistic. There’s no way for something that convenient to happen. Does it ruin the anime, however? No. Instead, it really allowed the characters to get the best out of their development. With Tokyo Magnitude it’s the same: sure, we may not often see perfectly realistic illusions of our dead ones around us. But does that make this series any less incredible? For me, it absolutely doesn’t!
Rating: **** (Fantastic)

Posted on 4 September 2009 with categories: Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



Oh my god. I’m just… at a loss for words after this episode. This episode was just beyond sad. I’ve been a huge fan of Noitamina for years now, and I have watched every single of its shows aside from Honey and Clover. But damn, this series has a good chance to be the best thing that Noitamina ever brought forth…

Now that we’ve finally arrived at the last part of the story, it’s time for all of the build-up to pay off. IE: it’s time for this series to get back to the amazing quality of the first five episodes. Mari gets home this time, and starts looking for her mother and daughter. At first sight, they appear dead, but eventually they turn out to have survived in one of the most heart-wrenching reunions. Usually when anime try to play around with “is he dead or not”, this feels rather cheap, but within the context of this series it becomes downright scary. With so many people dead, and at the same time so many survivors left not knowing what happened. There’s no way of telling who might have survived or not. Heck, are we even sure that Mirai’s parents survived?

Speaking of which: OMG at the cliff-hanger at the end. Mirai and Yuuki have actually decided to travel to their homes ALONE!? Taken into account what happened to Yuuki in the previous episode… how the heck are the creators going to end this?! Probably the most evil thing of this episode was that even though Yuuki is most likely SPOILER just about everything kept Red Herringing around him.

I now see why I was so disappointed with episode 6 and 7: with such an amazing start, I expected the rest of the series to be also this consistent in quality, while in fact they were meant as a calm before the storm: they were meant to build up, and take it easy a bit for the finale. I’ve indeed been incredibly stupid thinking that this series was going to jump the shark in its second half. This episode was utterly amazing, and the final two episodes… wow… just wow.
Rating: **** (Fantastic)

Posted on 28 August 2009 with categories: Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



The past two episodes of this series made me think a lot about the nature of criticism. Especially after the previous episode, which I slammed down for having Yuki supposedly collapse for cheap drama, even though it’s not that weird for people to get sick in these situations. I also remember people who weren’t happy with that episode because it included robots. But yeah, then you have things as this: is it still unrealistic and unbelievable when it’s being used in real life?

I think that a lot of people (including myself; I’ve caught myself doing this plenty of times), whenever they are turned off they start looking for reasons why. These seeming logic flaws are then very easy targets for these criticisms. Ignoring the obvious cases in which a plot twist becomes so stupid or unbelievable that it destroys the entire suspension of disbelief, these things often aren’t the real reasons for these declines in quality, and in the case of very realistic shows as Tokyo Magnitude, you can see people who start blaming things that turn out to be perfectly normal.

In the end, the only thing that I can really criticize this series for is that I don’t like the OP. I’m one of those people who is too lazy to skip through OPs (aside from perhaps marathons), but at the same time I’ve never been a big fan of neither j-pop or j-rock, and Abington Boy’s School is no exception to this rule, and the song they used for this series’ OP is getting more and more on my nerves.

I think the thing with this series is that episodes 2-5 were utterly amazing, and the past episodes, instead of building up to a great climax at the end, instead went to go for a much quieter aftermath. It’s not exactly the same as Eden of the East, where it became clear along the way that the creators just took too much on their plate and badly paced the series after its initial episodes. With Tokyo Magnitude, I think it’s obvious that the past few episodes lacked the same emotional impact of the first five episodes. The question however is: does it need to be?

I’m getting more and more convinced that this show indeed doesn’t really need to be. I’ve become so used to anime, which nearly all have the general pattern of a build-up that gets increasingly full of tension, but here we have an entire subversion of this trope. During an earthquake, the biggest emotional shock comes right after it happens, and after that the tension, while it’s still there, fades as more and more people regain their sensibilities. The more I think about it, the more realistic it becomes.

Anyway, about this episode, aside from the total chaos in the hospital it was a very quiet one. Yuki turns out to be fine for now, while Mirai has visibly grown up while Mari becomes more and more worried as to what happened to her children. It’s a role reversal here: the reason Mirai managed to grow wasn’t just because she had to look after Yuki, but also because Mari, who started out as a mother figure, started to show more and more of her weaknesses. And that was the strength of episode six: its purpose wasn’t to insert some random illness, but instead show that Mari instead was just a human being, and at that point Mirai realized that her whining wasn’t going to help at all to solve the situation, especially since you can really see that she wants Mari to be reunited with her daughter.

As for the reason why Mari refused to take the scooter in episode: she might actually be running away. Take a look at this episode: instead of walking fast, like what I would do when I was worried about someone, she often walks way behind Mirai and Yuki. It’s as if she’s scared to find out that her daughter died.
Rating: ** (Excellent)
Edit: I rewatched this episode, based on your comments, and you’re right: they’ve given this episode a completely different meaning, and what I believed was a rather quiet episode has now become incredibly sad instead. I really have to give thumbs up for the creators for having the guts to go this far.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Posted on 22 August 2009 with categories: Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



Aah, I hate this effect. Do not get me wrong with this entry: this episode still was a really good one, but at the same time I do believe that the creators have jumped the shark a bit and moved away from what made the first five episodes so incredibly good. This effect started at the last episode, but back then I was focusing too much on details that didn’t really matter.

But let me first start with the good parts: it really was a good lesson for Yuki and Mirai this time that they shouldn’t be wandering off at every occasion. Now that they’ve gotten a good night sleep and the initial shocks are gone, they’re starting to get a bit more of their energy back, and so they start to act more child-like. The rain was also nicely preluded with the dark clouds coming up.

As for the robots, they’re an interesting idea, but they could have been made more practical in my opinion. If they were made to scout around for survivors, they should have been made faster and smaller. Otherwise they could have just been replaced by a rescue worker on a bike. Still, it does seem logical to use robots like these if they’ve been sufficiently tested and fail-proof: this way the rescue workers can act more efficiently and don’t have to waste unnecessary energy to search around for survivors, and instead can concentrate on rescuing.

Anyway, my “problem” with this episode was that the creators are trying a bit too hard, which takes away a bit from this series’ realism. And really, Yuki’s sunstroke would have been a great ordeal for the characters to overcome, but it just feels cheap right after Mari succumbed to anemia. It’s nearly like the characters are taking turns in getting sick here. The creators instead should have just focused at the three of them trying to get home.

I realize I’m complaining a lot, but I’m just rather unhappy that the past two episodes didn’t manage to uphold the amazing standards that were set by the first five episodes. It’s in a way like Now and Then, Here and There: the second half there was still really good, but it wasn’t as gut-wrenchingly sad as the first half. This episode also took the focus away from everyone else, in the favour of focusing more on Mirai and Yuki, and while it would have been an excellent episode for most other shows, I just know that the creators could have done better here. The boy with his fascination of robots was also nice and all, but it felt too much like he was reading a script rather than telling about his life.
Rating: * (Good)

Posted on 14 August 2009 with categories: Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



Well, this episode unfortunately wasn’t as impressive as the previous ones. It still was amazing for any regular series, but this is Tokyo Magnitude we’re talking about, which had been consistently awesome up to this point and it’s a shame that this episode broke its flow a bit. This episode was a bit too… “anime”, for a lack of a better description. It was the only episodic episode of this show so far, but especially the animation budget was considerably lower.

The creators thankfully kept trying to animate all of the on-lookers around, characters still are very much animated, but the faces in this episode were sometimes too distorted to take seriously. It works in some series that go with this all the way, like Birdy the Mighty, but here it doesn’t really work, unfortunately.

In this episode, Mari also catches a cold from sleeping without a blanket. She collapses a bunch of hours later, sleeps for some more hours, takes a few pills and after that is completely fine again.

That is not how colds work.

This really was my major beef with this episode. I’m not sure about others, but when I catch a cold I don’t immediately notice this. Of course it’s annoying and I feel terrible while having the cold, but is it really enough for people to pass out on? Where does the heavy breathing come from, and why do they disappear that often? I’ve seen this often in anime: people catch colds and nearly always pass out afterwards for dramatic effects. Or do the Japanese have different colds than the Western world or something? Especially in a show as realistic as this one, it stands out.

But apart from that, there was a lot to like in this episode and it really allowed us to show a different side of Mari. The aftershocks made as much of an impact as ever, especially when Mari, Mirai and Yuki, especially since they were inside a building (the building where Mari works, actually). We learn that a bunch of accidents have taken place at the place where Mari lives, and she suddenly becomes a completely different person as she tries to find out more about what happened back there. All we know from this episode is that there’s some sort of fire going on, but nothing on her daughter yet. We do get to see another bunch of pictures of her daughter and her husband though, along with a small flashback of how she and her husband fell for each other.

So a major part of this episode was spent on Mari, trying to decide whether or not to abandon Mirai and Yuki in order to check up on her daughter. Mirai and Yuki even go as far as borrowing a scooter from a person who managed to survive the earthquake without any major casualties (I loved that scene in which they tried to steer that scooter. So realistic). In the end, she just decides to take her time and go along with the two children.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 7 August 2009 with categories: Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



This series is seriously tearing me up as I watch it. I remember wondering at the end of Birdy the Mighty Decode 2 whether or not the rest of 2009 would premiere a series that would match its brilliance. I’ve finally managed to find a contender. It’s amazing considering how much this series has already done in only FIVE EPISODES so far. This episode lacked any action and didn’t have a rebellious Mirai, but it left me as an emotional wreck afterwards.

This episode first showed Mirai’s old elementary school (she seemed to have had to travel quite a distance to reach it), which leads to an anecdote in which Mirai tells about how her mother embarrassed her at her graduation ceremony. The rest of the episode shows the three lead characters as they spend the evening and the night in the shelter camp that has been set up at the school.

I loved how this episode didn’t just tell the story of Mirai, Yuki and Mari, but also that of the school, the people who lost their loved ones, the old couple who lost their grandsons, the girl who had a mental breakdown due to the aftershocks, the guy who seems to have suffered from a sunstroke, Megu, one of Mirai’s classmates and heck: even that couple sitting next to each other and staring at the wall that only appear in one frame. Seriously, you don’t see many series in which the creators just pull out a random classmate, give her less than a minute of airtime and yet manage to make you sympathize with her with a believable back-story.

But yeah, this was the episode in which the chaos settles down a bit and the emotions pop up even more. It’s in a way similar of getting an injury during sports or something else: in the beginning the adrenaline is still rushing through your body and you’re still too bewildered to really get what’s going on. Then a few minutes later, the seemingly endless pain really starts. In this episode, it really starts to sink in that people have died here.

Really, while watching this episode, I kept wondering whether this really was only the fifth episode of this series. It feels like much more episodes have passed for this series, and yet there seems to be no end to how amazing this series can be. It’s really going to rank among my favourites of 2009 if the creators can keep this pacing up throughout the final six episodes.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Posted on 31 July 2009 with categories: Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



Four episodes in, and this series still hasn’t show any signs of dulling in. This episode yet again was amazing and heart-wrenching. I was already suspecting that the creators were going to crash Tokyo Tower at one point. That happened here. Interestingly enough though, it was far from the highlight and main focus of this episode.

Media coverage on such disasters like Earthquakes and the like always tend to be rather one-sided: they always focus on the people who have been hit the worst. These disaster documentaries like the ones you see on National Geographic Channel always tend to pick out the ones with the most spectacular cases and all. That’s why it’s incredibly refreshing to see that this series picked out a bunch of random people who got caught up in the earthquake. This brings things surprisingly close to home: “it could happen to you”. And I think that that’s what makes this so engaging.

The first half of this episode was about… Mirai trying to go to the toilet. Perhaps it’s not the most appealing of side-plots, but for a child her age to suddenly get bothered by a bad stomach… it indeed could happen and this episode showed that even that proves to be full of troubles in such a situation in which millions are stranded.

What struck me also here was that scene in which Mirai and the others tried to get some food. The way Mirai judged that person who walked away with two cups instead of one is exactly what’s going on in just about everyone’s mind in such a situation. We have no idea whether this guy took advantage of the situation or whether he really had a good reason to be carrying two cups, but that single scene said so much about the situation everyone’s in.

The second half of this episode showed Mari leaving the two kids alone as she tried to get information on where to go, at which point Mirai and Yuki get into a fight. At that point, Mirai really felt miserable because of everything that happened to her, not to mention that at that age, you really find your little brother’s whining annoying no matter how good he means it. In the end they both have a good cry and make up.

I’ve always been a fan of realism in anime, so I really love the touches of realism in this series. Yuki may be a bit too nice for a boy his age, but I definitely could see a character like his in real life. And besides, I don’t think that he’s ever seen his sister in so much distress as here, so I don’t think that he had any time to panic for himself. I think that that’s why his tantrum in this episode was so good for him, because it finally allowed him to blow off some steam.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Posted on 24 July 2009 with categories: Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



To those who found the second episode a bit too mild and unspectacular: watch A Spirit of the Sun. It’s a two-episode OVA about an earthquake that is so powerful that it splits the entire Japanese mainland in half. That’s destruction for you. I however, prefer series as Tokyo Magnitude much, much better. After all, what makes more impact? An atom bomb dropped onto some sort of major city that wipes out millions of people, or a section of a highway that crushes some people who were worrying about their loved ones and tried to get home, dying right before the protagonist’s eyes?

Anyway, this episode showed what I have been suspecting: the real disaster hasn’t even started yet. Mirai and Yuki are miles away from their house, a distance that’s very hard to walk for a bunch of kids, and the two of them are going to have to try and reach it inside a city in which millions of people are trying to do the same.

And then there are the aftershocks, which may not have been able to cause destruction on a large scale, but definitely on a small scale. Take buildings that have been well designed, but caught fire in the big earthquake. Through an extra push of an earthquake of size 5.0, they can still collapse, which is what happened to the bridge in this episode.

There is no doubt in my mind that this is an amazing series. This episode did so well in bringing across Yuki’s fears of being abandoned and separated from Mari, even though she often bitches at her. The blisters on her feet due to her sandals was also a very nice touch. Because the weather is so hot, I doubt that a lot of people there are wearing shoes fit for long walks.

As for the typical Bones endings, I can actually see little that can go wrong there: if the series is just going to be about Mirai and Yuki trying to get home, this will make for a very charming conclusion to the series if the creators end it at their reunion. The only problem I can see is that they might force in a conclusion to Mari’s storyline about her kid.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Anonymous731749:
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AidanAK47
I have played all the big roguelikes and found they have the same problem. I argee on procedural generation. Even if the map is different every time you are essentailly going through the same rooms and doing the same things.
Masky
Though to be honest, I don't like procedural(or designed room and then game connects them randomly) games much. I much enjoy hand designed dungeons since I rarely play games through more than once anyway so roguelike's appeal of "Every time you play it through its different!" doesn't appeal to me much and hand designed dungeons are much more memorable
Masky
Can't really comment further on that since I don't know which roguelikes you have played, and neither I have played gungeon so I don't know if its badly designed to the point you can't do anything if rng says so. Though I guess there is nothing wrong about liking luck based games, if roguelike in question is truly unbeatable if rng says so, well, its really badly designed one if you ask me.
AidanAK47
Take my last run. Made it up to the fourth floor. Got plenty of guns but none were really useful. Even then ran out of ammo for all of them and the game was cheap about giving out ammo. Plenty of money but shops with nothing worth buying. Over 5 heart containers but no goddamn health. Died on the boss because I rolled out of a bullet into another bullet. Pretty much unavoidable.
AidanAK47
@Masky, that's the theory but in pretty much every roguelike I played its not the case. If the RNG decides you are going to have a bad time then you are going to have a bad time. Skill can only bring you so far. I have played this game for 7 hours and I know I could have finished it in 2. Only thing stopping me is a dice roll.
Masky
Like, the thing with roguelikes is that they can get easier/harder depending on luck, but well done one should be completable even without any upgrades at all if you are skilled enough.
Masky
Thats not the really case with roguelikes though, unless game design is bad and includes insta kill traps and such that are unavoidable if you are unlucky
AidanAK47
I hate roguelikes. Been playing enter the Gungeon and I just lost all patience with it. Getting real tired of my victory being decided by a RNG. It never feels satisfying to finish a roguelike because I know my victory was determined by pure luck.
AidanAK47
So we got to rely on fansubs for it when it's airing.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Nope. I think because netflix only puts up full seasons they are only planning to put it up when it's finished airing. Or when it's dubbed.
SuperMario
But how does the Netflix thing work? So of I have a Netflix account I can watch the show weekly?
SuperMario
@Aidan: that's a dumb way to do things really because unless you watch the show weekly, everyone gonna forget that it even exist. Just look at Re-Life last year
Lenlo
thought*. Words are hard.

Eventually found the actual first ep though and enjoyed it.
Lenlo
Was funny. I tried to find the first Ep for Little Witch, found original short made afew years ago, watched it and though "This is very similar to the original... Whats new".
AidanAK47
Little witch is one of the best shows this season and yet I can't get subtitles because Netflix doesn't release shows weekly. Motherf*cker.
Lenlo
Ore Monogatari I enjoyed. It was a nice romance that actually explored what happens after the confession. Also the 2 leads are just precious.
Lenlo
Alright but unmemorable seems like a good summation.
SuperMario
@Lenlo: one good thing about Seiren is if you don't like this romance, the whole thing gonna reset after episode 4 so there's a chance that you might end up like it. Agreed that the comedy wasn't very good. Alright but unmemorable
SuperMario
@Topgavin: I watched like first 3 episodes and stopped because I didn't have much time there, but I enjoyed what I saw. A well-written and endearing show in my book
Topgavin
Has anyone here watched Ore Monogatari before? Because in the 4 years I've watched anime, I've never heard of it (I guess it did come out 2 years ago) and yet it's turning out to be one of my favorite shows. Always great going into a show expecting nothing and getting pleasantly surprised.
AidanAK47
Only one more impression to go. Should have it up tomorrow.
Lenlo
Im really not feeling Seiren. Its "comedy" isnt for me and I just dont find it very enjoyable to watch so far. Im curious if it gets any better but 2 episodes in it just isnt that good.
HelghastKillzone
That ending scene is an entire side-story compressed into that. Don't expect anymore of it from here on out as the it sticks to ruthless military/fantasy pretty well.
LookingForKeys
@Topgavin I think it was good, making it the second episode. That way the first set up the world the story will be in, and showed how much of a monster the "little girl" really is right at the end, and then made ep.2 the explanation. Nothing against Tanya trying to rip "God" a new one.
That after-credits scene, though...
SuperMario
Hmm, as much as I like Seiren's omnibus format, it doesn't turn out really hot this second episode. Demi-chan, on the other hand, still maintains its endearing tone. Might blogging Demi-chan instead
Topgavin
Yeah, that second episode was much better than the first. Dunno why they didn't start with that to be honest, waste of an opportunity for a good hook episode. The voice for the main girl still sounds weird to me though; I get it's supposed to sound weird because it symbolizes 'her' being out of place and her personality and body being a mismatch, but it'll certainly take some getting used to.
AidanAK47
Youjo Senki, now we are talking. Like Helghast said, Did the god scene way better than the LN and manga. Made it less comedic and more intimidating.
Lenlo
Oh man that Rakugo intro. Not sure what to think, but first time seeing it I liked it
Kaiser Eoghan
I sort of like good will hunting because I kind of saw a bit of myself in Damon's character when I watched it ages ago.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Remaking psycho and ruining the shower scene, for shame van sant, for shame.
Kaiser Eoghan
Its easy to ripoff some obscure thing though and get away with it. The dogtooth director essentially stole an old Mexican film to make that.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: yeah, that following some guys from behind like they were on a RPG games, which I think actually fit with the tones of Elephant. I have such mixed feeling with Gus van Sant too. Don't really think he's a great director.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Although Istvan Szabo is probably a little more well known for that Mephisto film that updates the Faust story. Zoltan Fabri's the fifth seal is a very thought provoking war movie.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I remember seeing a film documentary that featured Gus van sant in one section, they showed clips of tarrs films, Sant ripped of the cinematography and stole the style from some British short film to make Elephant.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: agree on the other Hungarian filmmakers, I don't know much about them either.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Scorsese's Silence was a big comeback. I really really emotionally connect with spiritual crisis stories.
SuperMario
@kaiser: yep, definitely check wreckmeister down. Althought I admit that watching his 2-hour plus films will feel like 5-hour anyways
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I'm more tolerant of darker teenage/coming of age films/stories. Les Demons was a big surprise.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Though its kind of frustrating, I do think Tarr probably takes attention away from other hungarian filmakers because no-body knows who the hell the others are.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Man, wreckmeister was so visually arresting I started getting dreams from it.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I would consider Tarr to be kind of a poor mans Janco, Angelopolus and Tarkvosky rolled into one. I don't entirely "get" wreckmeister and man from London but they are great atmospheric mood piece experiences.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I had been wanting to watch Belar Tarr's Turin Horse and Werckmeister Harmonies for so long now. Well, Fat Girl is shocking haha, but I'm normally drawn into those kind of films anyway.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Margaret took like 5,6 years to release because he couldn't cut it down in the way he wanted. The final cut if I remembered correctly was edited by Martin Scorsese
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Only a HDcam for moonlight now.
Kaiser Eoghan
I looks like my lineup is witch academia, rakugo and youjo senki, well the most latter one until I get bored.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I sense a directors cut for manchester, it feels like it need another 30 minutes.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: right up my valley. Watch Kenneth Lonergan's previous works Magaret and You Can Count on Me. Magaret is very messy but have a raw dialogue and interactions as well
SuperMario
Now the first episodes are over, I will keep on covering 3-gatsu, as for the other twos atm I have 3 options: 1) full romance/anti-romance high school Seiren/Scum's Wish. 2) slice-of-life moe monster girls Demi-chan/Maid Dragon and 3) Mature,dark Onihen/Acca (which although I like them I don't have much to talk about).If you guys have any preference on which shows you like covered then let me know
Kaiser Eoghan
@Helghast: At this point I'm watching youjo senki as an entertaining guilty pleasure.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Too many reboots upcoming, will wait for the dvds instead. I want to explore more of manchester by the sea's director's work. I also want to finally get more into Bela Tarr's stuff.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I was rather shocked by A Ma souer/fat girls final act. Scenes with the Italian in the bedroom were initially creepy.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: it's a nice review Kaiser, a bit jealous with you that you've seen those 3 films which are touted as the best films of 2016. Also Fat Girl, haha, I love that movie.
Kaiser Eoghan
Poor yotaro =< you have so much stuff going down on you =<
HelghastKillzone
Youjo Senki episode was so good today. That revamped scene with God just fitted so right.
AidanAK47
A official release of that game in the west is apparently coming but it's been a few years and not much news about it.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: Ah yes that was the one.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, Had to think for a moment on that one but I think I was talking about this. https://vndb.org/v3144
Kaiser Eoghan
Now I'd hardly consider myself a studio trigger fan, but I watched the first witch academia episode there, it was actually kind of fun, got the same reaction from me as flipflappers did, that magical, special feeling.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I also, of interest reviewed Kenneth Lonegrans new film: http://letterboxd.com/shao_liu_ringon/film/manchester-by-the-sea/
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Moonlight got some feels out of me though it could of been more, it ends abruptly and with 20 extra minutes they could have spent a bit more time on each section of his life.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I checked out lala land, ending was very well executed, one of three scenes in the film that were impressive visually. The whole thing looked pretty and Gosling and Stone had some decent chemistry. Although it didn't resonate emotionally as strongly as the musicals of Jacques Demi did.
Kaiser Eoghan
MOM I want aiyoku no eustia and I want it now.
Kaiser Eoghan
I've never heard of himawari or tokyo babel. The hellsing comparison at least interests me in dies irae. What was the name of that visual novel again that was coming out soon, Aidan you described it as "And Kaiser would love it because its supposed to be really fucked up".
Kaiser Eoghan
I vaguely remember the anime for 11 eyes, it was very forgettable, even the voice acting was poor, hated the childhood friends and the pacing was poor, those black knight things were kind of interesting though.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: You'll have to add me onto the list of those unsatisfied with the ever 17 writer, I read one of those games and felt it was a bunch of interesting bait that never paid off.
AidanAK47
Anyway I plan on doing a review of 11eyes here when I finish it.
AidanAK47
Can't say I was a fan of Ever17. That was a really good twist but when it came to explaining it their was a lot of contrived development. Generally not a fan of the writer. Looseboy, Ryukishi, Gen and Nasu are more my kinda thing
AidanAK47
@Anon, it is nice that so many VNs are on steam but I wish they wouldn't be stupid with the whole no adult content thing. Not so much for myself but to prevent idiots from writing negitives reviews because the game doesn't have sex. VNs can grip you in a way anime simply can't and while they require pathence and time those can be some pretty powerful stories.
Anonymous678956
@Aidan, I am so happy steam's so VN-friendly now. I think it's a very good type of media. Like anime, it has nice visuals, music and some movement but also the inner monologue and text amount of books. It's the perfect combination. Plus, the routes, which are often puzzle pieces and PoVs you have to go through to understand the whole story. True routes like the one of Ever17 blew my mind.
AidanAK47
Hopefully the two VNs I bought of steam turn out better. Tokyo Babel is supposed to be alright and I heard really good things about Himawari.
AidanAK47
I am about a third of the way through the game and really not much of worth has happened. The concept is interesting but the execution is sorely lacking.
AidanAK47
I went in expecting it to be a mixed bag and it's pretty below my expectations. It's just not really well written and the protagonist is a moron. THere isn't really routes and instead you are pretty much stuck with his childhood friend as the main love interest. Problem with that is her character begins and ends with loving the main.
Anonymous675376
@Aidan, damn. 11Eyes is on my reading list as well. Although I almost expected it to not be as good as I thought it'd be (back then). Guess I would have enjoyed it if I was able to read it while the (shitty) adaption aired, maybe I have seen/read too many series by now. Guess I'll still give it a try some day though.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I haven't heard the OST or watched the intro video. I only know it be reputation and have decided to walk into it as blind as I can. Still slightly worried as I was somewhat looking forward to reading 11Eyes for a couple of years and now that I am reading it it's well...not good.
Anonymous675376
@Aidan, same here. I was waiting years for this, since I saw the intro video for the first time. Also, that OST!
HelghastKillzone
Youjo Senki is already leagues better than Izetta. It's going to be top anime of forever and ever. (maybe not)
AidanAK47
And finally Dies Irae is funded. May actually be able to play and finish the game before the anime airs. If the hype is real behind this baby it could be a new personal favorite Visual Novel of mine. Already looking promising with it being like a cross between Hellsing and Fate/Stay Night. Two things I most certainly like.
Lenlo
@Masky, in regards to style over substance thats where im at with Gurrne Lagann.
Topgavin
Yeah, I'll probably watch the next episode to see whether it can redeem itself. Hopefully it can but considering 1st episodes usually get a lot of budget, there's some severe doubt in there.
AidanAK47
I actually argee with character designs and voices are bad in regards to female characters. Still the next episode might change your mind if we get more into the main characters head.
Anonymous671470
It's boring
Topgavin
Also, it seems I disagree with a lot of people in thinking Youjo Senki will be a massive trainwreck. The character designs are awful, the voice acting is mismatched but most of all the premise just seems so very dumb. If I wanted to watch a badass kill people I'd go watch Hellsing or Drifters, because at least those don't have some op, disproportionate loli as the mc.
AidanAK47
Gets even more complicated when you account for Satire and Parody. You could equally argue all examples listed as being as such.
AidanAK47
Little Witch Academia is a decontruction of Harry Potter....I don't believe that but honestly if I tried I could put some reasoning behind that statement.
Topgavin
In the end, it always comes down to opinion (as with every discussion about anime, for some reason). You could spin any and every series as a "deconstruction", which is why people shy away from using the word. You could argue NGE, Madoka and Re:Zero are all deconstructions yet also argue Gundam, Precure and SAO are depending on what points you weigh more importantly.
Masky
Like, if deconstruction is supposed to be just "break the elements and then play story how it would realistically go down" well I haven't watched NGE, but as far as I know it does have stuff that isn't typical to mecha genre besides the "It would fuck up kids" thing plus "realistically how it would play out" is pretty subjective thing. I mean, its mainly about how cynical bastard the writer is :P
Masky
Like I said, I don't fully agree with it because I find video's speaker's attitude annoying, but I found it semi convincing. Main thing I don't find convincing about it is that I don't think its hard to turn video's own arguments agaisnt it and say that by its own logic NGE isn't deconstruction either, like Aidan just said earlier
Masky
And I don't really have energy for checking out the "correct" one. If there even is one. Anyway, the hipster video I was talking about was titled "What Actually Is A Deconstruction?" if you want to check it out.
Masky
Hmm, well, it does depend on definition you use. Like if you use "realistic" thing, well, Magical Girl shows don't usually have "You turn into monsters" thing going on and reason why NGE's pilots go crazy is from dangerous situations rather than evas making them do so. But honestly, I don't really have strong opinion on matter since word seems to be one of those with several different meaning
SuperMario
for me Madoka IS a deconstruction of Magical girl, and yeah like what Aidan said
SuperMario
I think part of Utena is a deconstruction of "prince riding horse and save the girl" because that notion is just a foundation for Utena to become a prince herself and save other girl. That's breaking it apart and resemble it again in its own way. Don't have to be dark/ don't have to be real either
AidanAK47
@Masky, That's just debating semantics. Besides that difinition would pretty much mean that Neon Genesis Evangelion isn't a decontruction either. Madoka isn't a decontruction because it's dark. It's more in its aspects of criticising why a girl should throw her ordinary life away for something as dangerous as being a magical girl. It does take plenty of the typical tropes and turn them on its head
SuperMario
@Masky: Genre deconstruction is such a tricky word that I normally try to avoid using because there's really no set characteristic about the term and different people have different opinions about what constitute "deconstruction". For me, I disagree that deconstruction have to be dark and real, hmm can't say it well but I will give you an example:
Masky
But yeah, I guess I could try to find the video if you guys are interested, though like I said, I got hipsterish feel from the video and felt rather annoyed through it even though I did get what the point was and found it sort of convincing besides my annoyance
Masky
(not that liking NGE is hipsterish, its just that I find NGE to be more style than substance sort of series <_< Anyway, guy didn't dislike madoka or anything, he just seemed to dislike people using word deconstruction wrong in his opinion)
Masky
(especially with how much they seemed to praise Neon Genesis Evangelion)
Masky
I mean, I think the guy was being somewhat hipsterish, but its true the being darker take on genre isn't same as deconstructing the genre
Masky
@AidanAK47: Some other guy on youtube did video that had actually pretty good point about how Madoka isn't really deconstruction, if you go by definition of "Break it down to parts and then play them straight to show how horrifying it would be in real life"
Anonymous670441
Gente - Ristorante no Hitobito
Kaiser Eoghan
If anything its the hate I have for certain characters that makes it more effective.
Kaiser Eoghan
The obsessional level of attachment is just uncomfortable to me, I don't want to get THAT attached to a non-real character.
Kaiser Eoghan
Its literally just a case of "Okay lets look at this picture of this character, she looks interesting, no feelings or expression from me, apply this fetish, fap, get release, go home. "
Kaiser Eoghan
Or drooling/dribbling/heavy breathing/grinning over the characters. I abhor alot of the anime girls I find attractive or am indifferent, even when looking at ecchi/hentai drawings I'm straight and clinical with it.
Kaiser Eoghan
I mean to each their own. But I really hate the level of emotion/devotion to moe/finding the characters attractive. Such as celebrating their birthdays, going on about how cute/hot they are, how important it is that they're virgins. Or not being being self-aware of how irritating the characters are.
Lenlo
Anime hipster is pretty accurate. His general treatment of the current state of anime is annoying, as is his obsession with moe. Maybe its cause I cant stand moe most of the time, but it bugs me.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Lenlo: Essentially my brothers view on digibro.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: I don't usually feel the need to correct errors in your reviews as the errors are generally un-important, but I think you meant to say apprentices rather than appearences in the Rakugo review, just bringing that up as it felt like kind of a throw off.
AidanAK47
Which is kinda like saying Madoka wasn't a magical girl deconstruction because Sailor Moon and Nanoha had dark elements too.
AidanAK47
Went and read the reddit comments on it and seems I was right on the money.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, He's basically a anime hipster. For example, I saw a thumbnail of his which had Saitama on it and below it "Is There Meaning In "Subverting" Shounen Tropes?" and I thought "Okay, he's going to go on about how OPM isn't subversive and then list a bunch of arbitrary examples in an attempt to redefine what is actually subversive"
Lenlo
I have lots of issues with Digibro. Dude has some good points, but other very horrible ones. Some issues he feels strongly about and gets kinda biased on imo.
Anonymous669202
acca looks visually interesting, and I personally really dig this kind of show, but it seems that it's definitely not for everyone
AidanAK47
Time to live up to my word. Four posts incoming.
AidanAK47
Man, Little witch Academia was so good. I disagree with the whole Digibro thing about being able to recognise a great show in it's first episode but watching this makes me think that this really is going to be something special.
AidanAK47
Alright, gonna put in effort today and have 3 or 4 first impressions posts done. That should knock out near half the season.
Kaiser Eoghan
Had a flip through handshakers. Garish is the word I'd use to describe it visually, it takes you out of the show.
Topgavin
ASuperMario From the first minute I can already tell it's by the same people that made K. Those colour filters and the extremely jarring/obvious city CGI is unmistakable.
SuperMario
Hand Shakers, literally makes my hands shaking. It's an abosolute mess. Highly recommended to check it out because it's so terrible it's great to watch
Vonter212
Yeah, and it's also a literal woman in refrigerator plot device, since that the thing that pushes the story forward.
Masky
I'd say that having to hide your sister's body in fridge would count as daaaaaaark and edgy, but when the body is wearing only underwear, and for some reason main character put metal things in fridge to keep body standing(I guess to not knock fridge open from inside?) I think it goes to "exploitation" you are talking about
Vonter212
@Masky - Did someone said doing dark things for drama? That's the bread and butter to get despair. Unless it's for the sake of perversion. Then it's just exploitation.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Masky: His other works dead tube and scumbag go further in the unhinged regard.
Masky
*relies on easy "let's do [x dark thing] for drama!" thing
Masky
Geez, Mayonaka no X Giten is fricking disturbing/disgusting ._. I'm pretty sure that writing relies on e, but I can't help but think mangaka is trying to make corpses sexy.
SuperMario
I found Onihei to be quite good, actually one of the most solid new episode I watched this new season. Guys, check them out
Vonter
I just hope it doesn't fall into the same misstep Kabaneri or Inuyasha or Bleach fall by making a villain so over the top that it crossed the line of not having a satisfying downfall.
Anonymous657941
@Vonter I think they just moved on. I lost interest rather quickly and I guess even the fans did that at some point, like with some other long-running series. There is much more new and more direct "fujo" stuff out there, many of them probably switched. Don't know what happens in the manga but maybe the story got worse or contained things some people didn't like.
Vonter
January will be loli dictator month (for me) :p. World Conquest Zvezda Plot, Youjo Senki: Saga of Tanya the Evil (new), Seraph of the End. For some reason I stumble into three curious series with little power hungry girls. If I can ask, why did Owari Seraph's hype died, I remember back it was mentioned more often. It still has the fujoshi fanart but still, I don't see people bringing it up.
SuperMario
@CATski: well, if you didn't like its first 3 episodes I dont think the rest gonna change your mind. Have you finished Erased then? How did you like it?
SuperMario
But I understand it's difficult to speak in front of camera, get some time to get used to it
SuperMario
@kaiser: I won't commend on poem as I'm terrible at it myself but younneed to work more on presentation Kaiser. Small little things like looking directly at the camera or say "thanks for listening" in the end can connect you to the audience better
Anonymous657071
Ok. I'll give the thing another chance. *clicks torrent* XD. CATski.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Topgavin: You might like centaur no nanami if you like demi-chan.
Kaiser Eoghan
Damn...repeated myself =<
Kaiser Eoghan
There are these things called slam sessions done in bars where people get up and read out stuff in front of a crowd and read stuff out. Actually watching rakugo made me think about practicing for that kind of thing.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: the video I did was of me reading out a short piece of writing I did, a poem. lol I uploaded it to the wrong youtube account too I just realized =P
[link src="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ypBZ2hBDBYs&t=11s
I"] was recording this from my mothers laptops inbuilt cam while reading off my desktop.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I think it's a good idea for you to try out reviewing movies/stuffs in youtube channel. I'll be very interesting to listen to them
SuperMario
@Topgavin: Agree. Demi-chan was so charming. Definately one of my favorite so far this new season
Topgavin
Demi-chan's first episode was good. Like, really really good. That blonde-haired girl was hilarious, the teacher-student relationship between the MC and the girls is really interesting and the social/practical problems the demi's face make it look like my favorite show so far.
CATski
Ah... ok. Is it really that good or it's just one of those "artsy" animes that tend to get overrated by their ardent fans? I didnt find the rakugo bit interesting.... probably the weakest aspect of the show for me.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: Why did I read that chapter. Why did I do that to myself.
Kaiser Eoghan
Admittedly yes the premise is not for everyone, but if you stick with it, the flashback arc had some good character work in there.
CATski
Rakugo has a season 2? I watched ep 1 - 3 of season 1 then promptly deleted it. The loud "yankee" dude was annoying. And the anime was boring.
Kaiser Eoghan
Oh man, I've been thinking lately of trying to start some kind of youtube channel. I did a few trial run videos. Its much much harder than it looks, didn't realize how nervy being in front of a video camera was.
Kaiser Eoghan
*a declining art and rakygo halls are closing down
Kaiser Eoghan
As the show continues to mention how "its declining art", that got me thinking of the modern day, how while things like tv and cinemas probably hurt attendances for rakugo performances, the internet has replaced theaters .
Kaiser Eoghan
Ah, now I've watched it. It'll be interesting to see Yotaro's relation to sukeroku's daughter develop. By all intents he should be an irritating character and not as interesting a yakumo based on his personality, but I can't help but like him, example of a goofball character done right.
Anonymous654016
ElDlive is looking good
Kaiser Eoghan
I haven't gotten around to rakugo's second seasons first episode yet =<
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