Posted on 26 September 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews, Giant Killing




Giant Killing, my favourite airing show of the past three months and likely to be my favourite sports anime (if board games aren’t sports). It’s a breath of fresh air in its execution, and a delight to watch from start to finish with a well developed cast that just sparkles with personality.

From the outside it may seem like a bit of an unimpressive football series, but it turns out to provide a unique look into the world of professional soccer, and it doesn’t ignore anything: aside from the players, it also gives ample attention to all kinds of supporters, the press, photographers, coaches, management, everyone involved is portrayed as a character and important to the series. The cast here is incredibly diverse, allowing everyone to stand out, rather than blend in. Credit also goes to the character-designers, who gave every single character in the series his own look.

I also feel that this is the series that shows one of the bewst portrayals of “there is no I in team”. It’s indeed true that Tatsumi is a brilliant coach, and there are a few brilliant players, but the series is entirely different from all of the teams in fiction that are just built around one player. Instead, everyone has the points at which he’s good and the points at which he’s terrible, and throughout 26 episodes, this series really tries to put as many people under the loop as possible. It really tries to do as much as possible in every episode in terms of characterization, and this really makes the huge cast come alive. It’s not like there’s one character that stands out, and instead it’s the characters together that form a very addictive whole.

Because it continues to explore its characters, evenin the quietest parts, there hardly is any part about this serise that’s not interesting, but the soccer matches, and especially the long ones, are where this series truly shines. It’s not that they’re the most unpredictable out there, you can pretty much predict the outcomes. Everything apart from that however is a huge roller-coaster ride, especially the final match that forms the climax of this series. It’s a match that’s constantly cyhanging and evolving, utilizing as many characters (including the opponents!) as possible.

This is really how a series without a big animatio budget should be done. Giant Killing can drink many of its big budgetted counterparts under the table with its incredibly detailed and addictive storytelling. It also is the series that is the single best at handling foreign languages, out of any anime I’ve ever seen: French, English, Dutch, Portugese, this is a really international anime that portrays foreigners as they are, rather than as the xemophobic stereotypes you usualyl see in anime. It’s not like this series has one particular character that is really well developed. What it does have, though, is dozens of characters with their own charms, quirks and flaws who subtly change over the course of the story.

Storytelling: 10/10 – Utilizes every minute to put as much detail into its cast and football matches. Addictive beyond belief.
Characters: 9/10 – Lots of characters, who are all diverse and sparkle with personality, and are explored really well throughout the series.
Production-Values: 8/10 – The animation isn’t stellar and it uses a lot of shortcuts, the series has a unique look nevertheless. The music is also simple but mesmerizing.
Setting: 9/10 – An excellent portrayal of professional football and everything around it.

Suggestions:
Shion no Ou
One Outs (It’s similar, although much less awesome)
Baccano!

Posted on with categories: Giant Killing



First of all I want to say that this episode ended with a completely new ED, and it really could not have fitted better. What a great and original way to close off this series.

In any case, the previous episode featured the climax of this series, so this episode had all its time for an epilogue, and it really turned out to be quite a unique closure for this series. Most series take things easy and slow down the pacing, but damn, so many things happened in this episode: we saw three matches, and the entire second half was dedicated to a bit of a curry party. At first this episode seemed very random, but it came together wonderfully in the end.

As an epilogue, you could really see that there was a lot that this episode tried to do, and it really succeeded. First of all it showed that the match against Osaka was nowhere near the end: they’re going to keep playing and growing, shown by how Akasaki was selected for Japan’s Olympic team. At the same time, this episode meant to summarize the themes of the entire series, and it did so through that curry party. For one it was hilarious to see Tatsumi order everyone to take part in it, but it really highlighted the themes of Giant Killing: teamwork and having fun.

I consider this to be an excellent example of a series that still is somewhere in the middle of its on-going manga, but found itself a perfect place o stop. Of course I’d really like a second season, but if this ends up to be the end of the series then I’m not feeling down about it at all, and the past episodes were an excellent ending.

Before the past Spring season started, I expected nothing from this series, but its first episode really blew me away. During the Spring Season, it was a tad overshadowed by Noitamina, but throughout the past three months it has been consistently my favourite airing series and I had a lot of fun blogging it.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 19 September 2010 with categories: Giant Killing



So this is it: the climax of Giant Killing (next episode will be some sort of epilogue, I guess), and THANK GOD it was every bit as awesome as I hoped. It was just one rush of adrenaline from start to finish, Dulfer’s team played to its full potential (it even switched out its attackers to focus on defence), the use of music was perfect (the creators even used a track that they hadn’t used before at), and I loved every minute of this episode.

I mean, I’m not going to deny that the outcome of these matches are predictable. We know that goals will be made. What makes this show so addictive though are the questions of “who?” and “how?”. This is especially why this final match kicks ass beyond belief: in every single episode, the creators pick out different members of the team to get their place in the spotlight, either because of their actions or by delving into their heads. This is a match that was constantly evolving with so much dynamics that I haven’t seen in any other sports series so far.

This time, it’s finally time for Gino to shine by, along with Sugi in order to make the second goal. Natsuki in the meantime only proves that he picked his role back up: he doesn’t end up in the spotlights. Instead, most of the credits for the final goal go to Murakoshi, for opening up the way to the enemy half, and Sera, for finally getting the chance and pulling off the stupid stunt that got in that third goal. And even beyond that, the creators never neglected the support of the rest of the team to get them there, with the possible exception of the Keeper since Osaka got no shots at the goal in this episode.

I really hope that this isn’t the last we get to see of sports series that focus on professionals, rather than high schoolers. They can lead to completely different series, and series that are based on adults have a ton of stuff that high school sport series don’t have, and vice versa. In this age in which the Japanese economy is doing poorly and there are more and more moe and bishie series, I’m really glad to see that there are still series like this one that try to be different in presentation, art, storytelling and execution. This final arc was really the perfect way to close off this series, and the results were really magnificent, and I can only hope for more series like this.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Posted on 12 September 2010 with categories: Giant Killing



I hate the cliff-hangers of this series with passion. I mean, keeping a hook until next week is one thing, but the tension is killing me here. The creators here have this tendency to cut off at the most tense episode of the series. This is just unbelievable: this entire episode was building up for something that happens two seconds after the end of the episode.

Aside from the usual tension, this episode really made the characters shine in so many different ways. I loved all those moments that were focused on character antics, ranging from Akasaki celebrating his goal to Hauer punching Kuroda because he had gotten so annoying (especially the way in which Tatsumi noted that Kuroda had a talent for annoying people). Most of the time, my favourite series of each season are dark, with quite a bit of angst, death and destruction. Giant Killing however is completely different. It’s an incredibly bright and fun series that hits just about all the right buttons.

I can only imagine how awesome the next episode is going to be: it’s there where everything in this series is going to have to come together: with twelve episodes left, and Tsubaki’s chance to score 2-2 ruined because of that defender who is really really tired, the match is at a point at which anything can happen now. I also love how this match is evolving with every single episode: first everything was focused on stopping the onslaught of attackers, most notably Kubota, then the focus moved to Natsuki as an attacker, and now this episode, instead of focusing on Tsubaki, it focused on Dulfer’s strategy collapsing and the main dilemma he has to face: what is more important, your ideals or winning every match you’re in? The long term versus the short term.

NB. This is also something I noticed as I started making screenshots, but the camera angles in this episode were really good here: they were varied, creative, and really helped to bring up the best in the characters. The animation in this series is generally nothing to write home about, but there are these rare scenes that are actually animated quite well and smooth.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Posted on 5 September 2010 with categories: Giant Killing



Aargh! Stupid cliff-hangers!

I mean… wow. The way this show builds up tension is just amazing. I mean, I can’t stress enough how nerve-wrecking this episode was, and it was just meant as a build-up! It was pretty much all about Natsuki, a character who had just been introduced, less than ten episodes ago. I really did not expect him to steal the show this way.

At this point, I’ve seen quite a few sports series already, and it really is an excellent genre: I hardly ever watched one that didn’t work. I used to be very biased against the series, but when I actually got to try out one of them, I quickly realized how completely stupid my biases were as I discovered a number of amazing sports series. And yet, despite such a high standard (and with “Shion no Ou” not counted as “sport”), at this point I’m willing to label Giant Killing as the best sports series I have ever seen. It rocks at everything: the characters, the tension, the chemistry, the depth, the entertainment. The animation is the only part at which it isn’t amongst my favourites this season, but in exchange it does have excellent character-designs with a unique graphics style, so even there it could be forgiven.

I also loved how this episode took something so obvious as “the ball belongs to the team, and not to you”, and went much further in this. Alone it would indeed have been a bit of a cheesy saying, but it becomes actually pretty interesting when related to Natsuki: I really put my money on how he was once one of those guys who took these crazy egotistical risks while understanding that at the same time the ball belonged to the team, but right now this 8-month leave changed him significantly. He’s no longer able to take the crazy risks due to his fear of getting injured again and having to spend 8 months out yet again (something I actually can relate to a bit).

It’s a bloody shame that the DVD sales are terrible, though, but this had it coming, unfortunately. In Japan, football just isn’t as popular as baseball, and it has very little to do with traditional Japanese culture. Still, I really believe that this show has a market internationally, especially in the countries in which football is really big. It’s a series that will be near-impossible to dub, but I feel that this is one of those series made with an international audience in mind, rather than just a Japanese one.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Posted on 30 August 2010 with categories: Giant Killing



Most of this episode was half-time, but it still was an awesome one. The creators really know how to create tension here, with 35 minutes of the match left and still nobody managed to score. The characters in the meantime are as fun as ever. It also helps that Tatsumi continues to hype his own game with his seemingly endless confidence.

Still, you can see that after the despair of the previous episode, the defence is starting to get together. With 31 minutes however, the problem is indeed Natsuki. He indeed was a bit different from usual in this game, though I never really thought of why this was. The end of this episode however revealed that Tatsumi made quite a devastating comment about his determination. With that I completely understood why he had been running around like a chicken during the past episodes. I guess that Tatsumi wanted to motivate Natsuki, but here’s one thing that seemed to backfire. And interestingly, despite all of the build up of the previous episodes, we still didn’t get to see anything from Sera.

In any case, I’m still surprised at how well the chemistry turned out here. All of the attention that the series has put into the different characters is really paying off right now, and something tells me that the next few episodes will give the rest of the cast beyond the defenders their time to shine. It’s a shame though, I really don’t see huge DVD-sales for this series, so I really doubt that there’s going to be a second season.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Posted on 22 August 2010 with categories: Giant Killing



Oh, I’m loving this series more and more. Even though this was meant to be just a building up episode (its goal was to create as much despair as possible without making the match nearly impossible to win again), it still rocked and I enjoyed every minute of it. That’s really what I’m looking for in an awesome series.

At this point, the entire cast is just so fun to watch, and not to mention that the creators really have put them against an awesome opposing team that sparkles with personality as well. This episode also really took its time to flesh out the team, and explain the biggest reason in why they’re so dominant: Kubota. Quite an interesting character. And the interesting thing is this: yes, Osaka was completely dominant in this episode. And yet this episode gave away a few hints at how the second half of the match will not be as one-sided. I’m talking about the point at which Dulfer says that the guy didn’t have the stamina to really stand out as a defender. And yet here he was running all over the field. My guess is that this guy is going to get tired, and I think that that’s what Tsubaki is waiting for.

The forwards were also interesting here: a few attacks were made, but it looks like Natsuki isn’t really sharp, while Gino has trouble placing his shots well enough for Tsubaki to take advantage of them. Is this on purpose? I suspect the latter to be the case. The final minutes of the episode were also nerve-wrecking. The characters finally had this chance… and yet the whistle blew. It wasn’t as cheesy that they would have definitely scored if it wasn’t for that whistle, but still, it could have turned the tides.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 16 August 2010 with categories: Giant Killing



I’m really glad to see that everything just worked perfectly in this episode. The banter between the different characters was absolutely hilarious, the match itself was very exciting despite its predictability, the characters shined more than ever here, the Osaka team itself is just awesome to watch in their relentless onslaught. If anything, Giant Killing has the climax that I’m looking forward to the most this season.

Hauer’s accent is hilarious. His voice actor isn’t as good as with Dulfer, but I can now somewhat understand what your regular anime voice actors may sound like to Japanese people. The thing is, most Dutch guys have a bit of a monotone voice. This guy, whoever he may be, speaks with so much passion in his voice though that it becomes hilarious. He also has this really weird but awesome sense of dramatically stopping for a split second in the middle of his sentences. Take for example the line “Je hebt me…. BELEDIGD HE!”, which can be translated to “You have…. INSULTED ME!”. Imagine saying that with the passion of an Italian soap opera actor.

But yeah, that could be the whole point. We’ve got a number of famous Dutch soccer players who are notorious for their strange personalities, so why not?I’m not sure whether the creators actually intended this, but I love this guy. In one way, he’s really trying to look cool, especially considering his huge posture. And yet the way he keeps his hair so cool and the huge accent end up only backfiring, making him look a bit adorable in a strange kind of way.

Either way though, I’m very surprised at what this episode decided to focus on. Of course it’s something we could have expected, but it didn’t occur to me until now: after all of the build-up the previous arc did towards the battle of the battle of the forwards, we actually didn’t get to see them at all in this episode. Instead, this episode was all about the defence, with Kuroda at the center.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

Posted on 8 August 2010 with categories: Giant Killing



Ah, yes. The creators are really intending this to be a major match. Just look at the huge amount of time that went into this episode, just leading up to the kick-ff of the actual match. Considering that we’ve only got six episodes left, this might just be the start of the climax of this series. If that’s true, then we’re really in for an awesome climax. Six episodes will be plenty of time to really build up the tension, and progress the match. This series has already shown that its attention to detail is superb, it’ll really be able to show this off with a time in which you can actually fit ninety minutes.

This is also one of those details, but I love how the Dutch people don’t have typical Dutch last names, like “de Groot”, “de Wit”. That isn’t needed either: there are enough Dutch people walking around with strange last names (or German for that matter). This really establishes that this series is dealing with actual people, and doesn’t really care about stereotypes, while at the same time they do make sure to establish these people as foreigners. The Dutch people really are freakishly tall for Japanese standards. Tatsumi’s question about the bikes is bound to have been intended as a subtle jab at this (and yes, for the people who are wondering: we do indeed have more bikes than people. Everyone and his dog seems to have one).

In any case, this episode didn’t feel wasted at all: it really established how the Osaka team is one of the nation’s favourites, with four national players, they’re the tournament’s top scorer and have yet to be beaten. But that’s the beauty of these stories about professional soccer: it doesn’t make them unbeatable. If this were a high school series, one loss would mean that they would be out of the tournament. Because of this, the creators really were able to play with this losing streak of the ETU where despite two wins, they’ve mostly played in a draw or a loss.

I also feel that this is one of those very few series that can end anywhere. Obviously I’m hoping for a second season for this thing, but the lack of ultimate goal here pretty much enables the creators to wrap up the story after any arc, since there pretty much can’t be an actual ending that closes off all of the subplots: life will always go on, and times will always be hard for the ETU. The more we get to see of them of course, the better, but I doubt that this series will leave that empty feeling that other series do when they suddenly stop with their manga still ongoing.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 1 August 2010 with categories: Giant Killing



YES! YES! The Dutch coach has returned! Now this is really going to give this show the potential to become even better than it already was. The next match against Osaka should really prove to be awesome, and not just because that means that there’s going to be a ton of Dutch in the next number of episodes.

But yeah, I really have to say that this series has the best use of foreign language of any anime series I’ve seen. We had entire conversations in Dutch and french in this episode, and while I can’t speak for the accuracy of the French accent, the Dutch one was really nailed. Dulfer does speak with a lot more passion than your average Dutch guy, but I still wouldn’t be surprised if they got a voice actor who actually lived in the Netherlands for a while. The accent of his translator was abysmal, like you would expect of a native Japanese, and I think that most Dutch people probably would have to ask him twice in order to really understand what he means, though it’s easy to get used to when you spend a lot of time with him.

I’m also very excited to see how much detail has gone into the character designs of the Osaka team. There were a ton of players whose character-designs received as much attention as the lead characters, and even the ones in the background all had distinct ones. If anything, this promises that the creators have great plans, and this might be an even bigger match than the one against Sapporo.

In the meantime, it’s really hard to imagine what the upcoming arc is going to focus on, since so many stuff happened in this episode at the same time. The only thing I’m able to put money on is that the ETU will be victorious, but how and why… I have no bloody clue. This episode continues the battle of the forwards by healing Sera’s leg, and hinting at how the second half was much better played, though leaves it for us viewers to imagine whether or not there was any correlation between these events. On the same time, this episode grabbed some more characters who haven’t had their own arc yet: the forward mid-fielders aside from Gino. This episode just didn’t want to say whether they just had a standalone conflict because everyone was pissed off by the goal against, or whether the show is to continue developing their characters.

Then there also was this thing that this series loves to use: Tatsumi apparently announced a crazy strategy, based on the expressions of all of the players. Unfortunately, we don’t get to hear it as viewers, and instead we just have to wait for it to actually happen. Either way though, I’m really getting hungry for more.

Oh, and I also really loved that scene in which the team got into that fight, as it just showed how everyone had different reactions. Seriously, the cast of this show is huge, and I love how this series plays around with characters with a huge variety of different ages, with only three characters not being adults. That scene really showed how all of the players in the team are unique, and how even when they’re together in a group they still stand out.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

CHANGE USERNAME
Lenlo
That was an interesting comparison. Cool to see how far anime has come.
Lenlo
I cant wait to watch Kaze Fui tonight to answer those questions Kazier!
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Someone has done a comparison video for Dororo for a scene in the new one, comparing it with the old one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j38anJY3BtA
Kaiser-Eoghan
Maybe some people found the flashback scenes too dramatic, but I didn't mind, they worked for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo:One thing that has come to mind, how would it go if he encountered the coach again, but in the present?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo:I also liked how the flashback was done in a grainy looking style.
If I found someone who was finding it hard to get into this show, I think that this episode would win them over and it’s the episode I found myself feeling the most.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Episode 13 of Kaze ga tsuyoku is the fitting and perfect culmination of what has come before it and all is now essentially out on the table dramatically and all the better for it because of how well this series has built itself up.
Animosh
In essence it is still a battle shounen though: even if the fights always have narrative weight (it's not just fighting for the sake of fighting), the characters are to a significant extent developed through fights. So if that's not your thing it might be a hard sell even with its amazing animation and sympathetic cast.
Animosh
@Lenlo/Kaiser: the problem with Mob though is that its first two episodes are by far the worst of the series. So if you give it a try you should watch at least until the third episode, and possibly even episode 4/5 (since it's the first really good arc of the series imo).
Animosh
Yeah, it must be tough to blog three shows in the span of two days, especially with how long your posts tend to be. I find it hard enough already just to keep up with everything!
Lenlo
Ugh. Didnt get to Kaze Fui tonight. A shame. This whole Dororo/MobPsycho then Kaze Fui air schedule is gonna be a pain. You can expect Kaze Fui's maybe... Thurs? Not sure yet. Busy night
Kaiser-Eoghan
*newer not old
Kaiser-Eoghan
Some additional things I always notice in certain things, sometimes in these old medieval films or shows, in the American ones the characters occassionally don't look earthy enough.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Koyomi from clannad i mean
Kaiser-Eoghan
Somewhere in my head Koyomi is this weird anime take on an autist.
Amagi
All she did what stupid, but everyone was saying that she was a genius that would probably soon develope the theory of eversthing so it must be real even if she's only ever smart when the plots needs her to do some sudden computer hack or something.
Amagi
Smart characters can only be written by smart writers. So sometimes writers just tell that the characters are smart but you don't actually witness it. It's either shown by using such wise one liners or just because someone else is telling the audience they're smart. Reminds me of that one Kyoani genius girl.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Can't do the walk, don't do the talk.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can buy it more for a tough old dude.
Kaiser-Eoghan
On more thought, alot of it has to do with who is saying them. Men who look like children with no charisma.
Amagi
I absolutely hate these one liners too. Especially when you can already hear them in the trailer.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I hate it when scripts coverup for awful characters by spamming quips at you.
Amagi
It's why I dislike so much stuff that gets released today. All these run-of-the-mills, copies, clones, alternative universes, sequels and so on.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But, beyond cgi, its the modern take wise-ass stuff that drives me nuts.
Amagi
Even if you're just drawing a landscape you need creativity. Where are the shadows, the lighting, what atmosphere should it trigger and so on. Maybe even a hidden motif.
Kaiser-Eoghan
ANARCHY KINO-MACHE!
Amagi
Yeah creativity is, well, should be among the most important things out there. I mean movies, anime, etc are actual art, art is meaningless without creativity. At least the narrating type of art.
Amagi
Kinda miss these anime. They're rare to begin with but I can't imagine anyone creating such a thing nowadays. Like Blame/Ergo/Texhno, even Lain. They never sold though, so I can even kind of understand it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ergo worked for me up until the ending.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think clever is too often a miused word by people when they describe things. They reduce it to being "Just a smart storyline", when really it is more suited a word to something in tune with its creative side.
Amagi
Ergo Proxy even had a dense/heavy plot that was developing while you're busy figuring the setting out. And many things were shown indirectly. It was one of the rare anime I had to watch twice to get it. Texhnolyze is also such a thing but more bizarre in my opinion, less logical than Ergo, but still great.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Its really really nice knowing that I can talk to someone like you about this on my level .
Amagi
It's why I love series with strong settings so much. See Blame for example. Even Made in Abyss. You never know what kind of landscape you will see next and in Blame everything is fucked to behin with.
Amagi
Yeah. Well we do watch movies to feel excitement, and you can't really feel that if you can guess what happens next.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Now obviously these types of things can end up a coin toss of it either works or it doesn't, but I appreciate the risk taken.
Amagi
I tolerate it for games because whereas I still don't like it there, at least the game as an additional value which is the gameplay. So even with weak atmosphere I am still enjoying it for being a good game. But when I watch a movie I want get sucked in to some degree instead of being aware that I am just the audience (or the player).
Kaiser-Eoghan
I like that feeling of I don't know whats going to happen next.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I like the idea of a madman getting to do a movie and running with his imagination.
Amagi
It's like dreaming and suddently hearing your real life cat meowing and realising that it's just a dream, you're in the bed and about to wake up. And yes this is exactly why I dislike CGI
Kaiser-Eoghan
But sometimes people cry pretentious wrongly, when there wasn't really any intended thing to get.
Amagi
It's why I am so easily angered over little errors or writing problems. Because they destroy the atmosphere more than anything else.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I mean, I do like themes, characters etc, but my favourite experience is nightmare/dreamscapes.
Amagi
If the atmosphere is missing it doesn't matter what story you are telling, everything feels kinda hollow. Doesn't mean that show with weak atmo and great plot is bad, but it would be ten times better with the proper atmosphere.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I hate this modern idea of "It HAS to be coherent or mean something or follow some kind of linear or logical thing or some kind of rules"
Amagi
@Kaiser: Yeah it's why I often say that atmosphere is the most important part of a story, actually.
Kaiser-Eoghan
With cgi I am constantly reminded I am watching a film.
Amagi
Don't know all of the titles you mentioned, will probably look into a few of those I don't know.
Kaiser-Eoghan
What I love about these old slavic art films, is no longer being aware of the world around me when I watch them. They use actual crafted cinematography so they can still feel like you're living it, despite being so unreal.
Amagi
Technobabylon and Gemini Rue are my favorites. These games capture this fucked up feeling of noir-punk and dark cyberpunk perfectly and have a bunch of great twists and character arcs.
Amagi
I like this type of darkness somehow, as well as trash punk and noir stuff. I do enjoy the Wadjet Eyes games for that reason.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Naturally I loved both
Kaiser-Eoghan
Hard to be God and On the silver globe are insane, there's this sense of what the utter hell am I watching? But you feel like you've been transported someone else entirely.
Amagi
"We" (Мы) is also a Russian dystopia novel, it shared a bunch of similarities with 1984 but was written long before Orwell had had even started with 1984.
Amagi
STALKER has also made me check out a bunch of Russian/Ukrainian novels. I love their ideas. Their dystopias and everything.
Amagi
Slavs are doing good games right now. Looking forward playing this Russia Fallout clone.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can't remember the name of the Soviet animation with the robot that keeps on working after everyone's dead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But crappy puns aside. Dead mans letters, letters never sent, Ivan's child hood, Andreii Rublev, Cranes are flying and I am Cuba have amazing cinematography.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wanna b a Potemkin master....
....like no-one ever was =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
Dead mans letters is up there with Threads as being one of the best apocalypse films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*evangelion
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or would that be Nyguen genesis Evagelion =)
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: You'll always be my ho chi main man minh Mario =)
SuperMario
I love Soviet cinema. Yeah the Mirror has that monochrome part. And they aren’t that big as they used to be but Soviet animation has great history
Kaiser-Eoghan
Stalker is an excellent science fiction film and not neccesarily because of need to anaylze it, but because it works of a visual-psychic level.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Zerkalo/mirror is a great example of this, just a stream of the directors thoughts, all visual impressionism, there might be a scene where I couldn't tell you the why or the what, but it'd make me feel something.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Basically where to understand, is simply to feel.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Its always fascinating that some filmakers have the ability to just let the film wash over you and move you with intricately crafted arthouse visuals. That they can do that, without character arcs/intellectual message/monologues.
Amagi
Speaking of soviet stuff I kinda want another movie or maybe even a cartoon like some of these old soviet movies that were partly monochrome and partly colored during important scenes. Didn't solaris have that too? - I know the monochrome parts were done to save money, but it was kinda impressive seeing colorless movies turning colorful ones during emotional scenes.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Definately something that would appeal to me in terms of alternate style of animation. I'm actually quite a fan of different, out there animation styles.
Lenlo
Heres the ED
Lenlo
Yup, paint on glass. The entire ED for the first season was done in that style. Mob loves to use obscure or generally unusual art styles to sell the other worldlyness of its spirits.
Kaiser-Eoghan
That sounds pretty cool.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Excuse me....paint on glass effects in Mob? There was a Soviet animator that used that style.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*earlier
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Again you psychically read my mind =P I was just thinking that about Farnese arlier.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I think I've accepted there are some manga I need to wait until they're finished before go back to them either due to slow scans or because they've gone on so long or go on hiatus.
Amagi
I think the later half as well as the hiatus killed it for me. Can't deal with that two chapters per year policy.
Lenlo
I, however, am still a rabid Berserk fanboy. :D
Amagi
I am also never a fan of characters completely changing personalities once they're redeemed. Farnese was an interesting villain and while I agree that she needed to overcome her trauma the current Farnese is just some soulless helpful big sister type. She only exists to care for Cjaskar and at some point even Cjaskar's eternal problem was starting to get on my nerves.
Amagi
@Kaiser: Same opinion on Berserk again. The arc before that with the inquisition tower was one of the highpoints of the manga, everything went downhill once Schierke had joined which is kinda sad since it was one of my favorite series before that.
Lenlo
Mob is much more character focused than OPM. OPM riffs on Shounen, while Mob is a much more character driven drama kinda series, with shounen elements. I would give it a shot for an episode or two.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Berserk started losing me when he started travelling around with those kids.
@Amagi/Animosh: Do you believe that Mob has better choreography than onepunch?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi:I will give exceptions to magical elements if a show can produce an adventure narrative worthwhile or if it’s a magical girl show.
If magic is featured in an occult horror fashion or in an exploitative way, I will also lean toward allowing it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: While I very much doubt Mob would be my thing, given how I generally felt indifferent to onepunch man and bias against shounen action, yes the art for Mob, when elevated by an anime adaptation lends itself to something unique looking and I can praise that.
Lenlo
I think ONE's style fits Mob better, and Murata's style fits OPM better. So yeah, Bones chose well on that front
Amagi
Not only are overdesigned characters really bad for movement which is actually needed to make a series and their characters feel alive but they also often look really bad in my opinion and there is a limit on how overdesigned a character can be until I stop taking them seriously at all.
Amagi
Yeah. I also honestly think that many anime are suffering from overdesigning.
Animosh
And I like Mob's artstyle a lot as well. It gives the series a unique look, and it gives the animators all the freedom they could wish for to play around with the characters (and basically everything else) as they see fit. Add Bones to the mix, and you have one of the best-looking series out there.
Animosh
I prefer the full ONE experience too. It's part of the reason why I slightly prefer Mob Psycho. OPM looks great and all, but there's way too much meaningless fighting going on in the manga lately. I prefer the tighter and more consistently subversive storytelling of the webcomic, although I still enjoy the manga a lot as well (and the story climaxes in particular tend to look freaking amazing).
Amagi
Different example since this is actual fantasy but I also prefered the early Berserk series over the later parts. When the supernatural horror stuff was more of a hidden thing appearing around Guts and otherwise just on special occasions, while most people didn't even believe such things exist. I prefer that over the high (dark) fantasy we have now although I get what Miura is aiming at.
Amagi
I guess I just have a thing for this secret-club mentality. I prefer it over worlds with blatan magical powers everyone uses and knows about.
Amagi
It's weird but I almost always hate anime with and about magic, the more fantasy it is the less I like it (usually, not always), but then again occult stuff is always totally my thing.
Amagi
I am quite happy they stick with the original Mob Psycho designs from ONE for this series. The OPM manga is probably one of the best looking things out there but ONE's artstyle has a lot of charme and makes characters more unique, especially if looks as polished as in the anime adaption.
Lenlo
Mmm cant wait to watch it. Kaze Fui, still great
Anonymous3309336
I really like how Kurahana admitted that he let his emotions get to him when he threw that punch at the coach back then. Now he feels remorseful about that day and how he made enemies from his former teammates.
Anonymous3309336
Meanwhile, looks like the next episode will focus on Prince again and his attempts to further improve his time.
Anonymous3309336
Meanwhile, his new teammates understand the pain he's been going through and want him to move on from that. Definitely as some of the best writing of this season.
Anonymous3309336
That punch he threw at the coach was certainly well-deserved, but I can see why the other teammates including Sakaki would come to despise him.
Anonymous3309336
This episode of Kaze ga... was great as always, as we see more of Kurahana's past and how his awful coach made Sakaki and the rest of his former team turn on him.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wouldn't have minded reading several volumes of seeing Satou on the run.
Animosh
Thanks! That's good to know. An alternate ending could have been fun, but I suppose the ending of the anime was fitting, and if it ain't broke don't fix it.
Amagi
Looks like it's going to end. I guess it ends the same but we can't say for sure yet.
Animosh
For those of you still reading Happy Sugar Life: is the manga continuing past the anime? Or does it look like it's going to end in the same way? If it takes a different path it might be worth checking it out.
Anonymous3307077
children of the whales
Lenlo
Holy crap. Mob Psycho 100 is the best thing since sliced bread. BONES thank you.

And thanks Kaiser!
Amagi
well we have a döner kebab ship at least.
Amagi
I am from Frankfurt, another one of the biggest German cities but there isn't much to see here aside from skyscrapers and banks.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*had **taught
Kaiser-Eoghan
I hah had some notion that the Japanese didn't really know English or it wasn't well thought over there?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Lenlo's taste continues to be impeccably based.
Kaiser-Eoghan
lol I thought coolass47 was covering Kaguya.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Germany, both Koln and Berlin, especially Koln felt like a home to me and felt the less alienating/foreign.
Kaiser-Eoghan
.....probably embarassing but, I think I'd be put off sleeping on the floor in a futon or using one of those weird Japanese toilets.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Truly I am the Kaiser Eoghan.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Beyond that I've been to Belgium, Spain, France, Italy, Northern Ireland and Wales.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've never been outside of Europe. I didn't have problems getting around Germany though when I went because my then girlfriend was from there and I knew enough to cope on a Holiday.
Amagi
also no matter which country I visited till now people were always friendly
Amagi
Yeah, now thinking about it, I could even find everything in Iran so I guess Japan should work too. Most people knew enough random English or German words to somehow lead you to the place and you want to visit unless it's some really weird relief or a small town that's difficult to reach but tourists usually stick with the big stuff.
SuperMario
... years ago and Japan is pretty safe and the signs are easy to follow in general. Even the locals who don’t speak English they are pretty friendly and help you the best they can. You don’t need to be worry on that front
SuperMario
I did it alone few
Amagi
Not sure how he did it (he went completely alone too) but it seems to be possible somehow. Not sure if I would make it though.
Amagi
Someone I know managed it alone and he isn't even that good in English.
Lenlo
I think I can manage. Lots of English signage in places like the rail systems and such. That plus the small amount I am learning in preparation and how much english they teach them over there, I should be ok
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Do you feel you'd be able to get by in Japan? As far as I know you don't speak any Japanese.
Animosh
Mob was great again too. The adaptation is really knocking it out of the park. And looks like we'll be getting one of my favorite side stories next week.
Animosh
I love how upbeat Slime continues to be. If only all wars were resolved like this. And then he goes on to improve everyone's lives by building homes, infrastructure, and coalitions based on common interests? Rimuru for president!
Anonymous3303364
I retired from the force in middle school enjoying my retirement, I still see the faces of the comrades we lost when we defeated the big bad and saved the world, I haven't seen my cute marketable mascot in 3 years, but I like this new life I'm living, I thought I found peace but the battlefield always calls out to me, why? Because war never changes.
Anonymous3303364
I love this comment since it's more well put on what this dark magical girls show really is:
Vonter
Perhaps in ten years when the next trope comes. I wonder if some will look back to the tropes from now with different eyes. Like they say, you don't know what you have until you lose it.
Vonter
Yeah, maybe I could watch some of that schlock. In a way some of it has become more endearing over time. Since times have changed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Vampire wars was fantastic though, used shitfuck as a word from what I remember.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Yes! Finally they're saying it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Watching a compiliation of dub cursings for angel cop, not enough F-bombs yet.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I always wish some of these old ovas got to go on for longer, especially AD police and bubblegum crisis. I'd have loved a full gunsmith cats or riding bean show.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have to watch Angel cop some day I really do.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I think vonter, if magical girl ops can't achieve the exploi angle then it has failed all the further. We'll have to see.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: I was disappointed when I saw the more modern anime! Because it didn't have the art I liked in the ovas.
Vonter
I do remember now. Did you watched the Birdy The Mighty OVA (not the series, the OVA). That one I remember liking because it was cheesy, visceral, had IMO better designs for the aliens than the ones in the TV series and I digged the dynamic of the two leads. However it was cut short. Perhaps it was too derivative for the time.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Sometimes I can actually take ridiculousness much better when its a live action exploitation thing if it happens to fail in animated form. That Jeanne d'arc anime and maybe magical girl spec ops would have made hilarious 60s/70s Eurotrash films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
One of the only modern anime to do the exploitation angle right was Freezing.
Vonter
I want to believe there's something like that already out. But I'm blocked. I can only mention that I now want to rewatch some of Devilman Lady. It does have a female lead battling monsters with an 80s sci fi horror vibe, I don't know it reminds me for some reason to movies like Godzilla 1985 or King Kong Lives.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Or go mental.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Thats one I still need to get around to. If I have to have a darker magical thing, it either has to be camp and goofy enough while taking itself dead seriously or keep some of the fun .
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - If you haven't check a couple of episodes of Lady Devilman. Despite being formulaic, the monsters on that anime are really well made and feel creative, morbid and creepy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: lol Damn, now I want to see Go Nagai's take of Magical girl ops.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I love how some old ovas would sometimes take place in America, but in this IDEA of it, getting it wrong.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: I love how they added in those stupid curse words every few minutes aswell, wonderfully incompotent.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Mad bull 34 was lovingly perverse , like a Japanese equivalent to those wonderful Italian police things.
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