Posted on 22 July 2010 with categories: Kuroshitsuji II



To answer the most burning question of this episode: yes, Claude was in it. No, he didn’t do anything. He only had two lines and most of this was another Ciel and Sebastian episode, though the next episode shows promise.

In any case, this episode was clearly inspired by Baccano. It really was a step into the right direction here, and I like the concept behind it, creating chaos inside a train full of interesting characters that has a hostage on it. I just don’t agree with the execution.

I think the biggest problem with this episode was that it was a Kuroshitsuji episode. This episode went through a lot of trouble to throw in as many characters as possible into this episode, but in the end they hardly amounted to anything here. There was a point at which everyone was getting pumped up on working together to free the hostage, but then Sebastian came and just god-moded everything back to normal. In fact, this is a problem that I’ve had with with every episode that has Sebastian in it: in theory it would kick ass to have an uber butler at your disposal (and Alois really showed this in episode 1), but if you’re going to use him in this way, a character like him just kills all of the build-up.

To me, this episode felt like it just introduced a lot of stuff for the heck of it. It was a fun episode because of this chaos, but the episode just felt too forced. At times, the direction also seemed to skip entire scenes without any proper transition. Train episodes like this can be done to great effects, though. Wild Arms for example had a particularly awesome one. This one however… it was too unbalanced.

Now, as for the main storyline, with Claude’s appearance (without Alois, interestingly enough), we got a few new hints as to what is going on. We really seem to be back in the past here, or either at the end of episode one we travelled into some kind of other dimension. My guess would be the latter, since I can assume that Ciel in the first season never really talked about this mysterious “spider”. At this point, the question most on my mind is how Claude knew that Ciel was looking for revenge.
Rating: (Enjoyable)

Posted on 15 July 2010 with categories: Kuroshitsuji II



I tried. I really tried watching the first Kuroshitsuji series, but yet again I only got as far as episode two before it became too much of a chore to watch. Shallow, predictable, annoying, I really don’t want to watch more of it. I know that I don’t have the right to criticize the second season without having fully watched it… but I’m gonna do it anyway. Thanks to that first episode, I’m really willing to give it a chance. This show was advertised as that you could watch it even without having seen the first season, so the creators had better live up to that.

So, as for the most burning question: no, there were no Alois and Claude in this episode either. Again, this episode acted like nothing happened. My guess would be that this series is flashing back without announcing it, or something in that direction. Either that, or that mysterious spider hints that Claude was behind the incident of this episode, which if true would really suck because even for him it would make no sense.

This episode wasn’t as awful as episode two, but it still was pretty unimpressive. It showed another character who seems to be a recurrent one: that red haired guy with a chainsaw. I don’t like him, especially in the way that his voice actor continues to ham up his performance. This episode was a bit of a murder mystery thriller, in which someone is setting people on fire.

It all was pretty shallow, the culprit revealed herself pretty early, there wasn’t much attempt given at fleshing her out, so the creators just sent her into a maniacal killing spree without making her really interesting to watch. Her weapon (photographing people to death) was a nice idea, but that also was all it was: a nice idea. It’s neither used well nor would this episode have been any different if she just stabbed people with a knife.

For some weird reason, Tetsuya Endo turned out to be the episode director of this episode… which is strange because he should be working on Digimon Xros Wars. Either way, both here and with Digimon he’s not really showing his best side. This confirms to me that he really is one of those directors who needs good source material in order to really shine. I admit that you couldn’t do a lot with an episode that had a premise like this one.

Okay, so the original author said to give this series a chance until episode four or eight, so I will withhold judgment for now. But seriously, this series is going to have to become a lot better than this now. What I want to see are bold, new ideas executed well. The way that this series has been set up, it’s the perfect opportunity to try out new stuff, but instead it’s been stuck with ideas that it never uses. I mean, this is A-1: they’ve been doing nothing but that in 2010, despite a shaky production at times. I understand that Kuroshitsuji isn’t one of their main series, and that it’s really apparent that they are focusing on Occult Gakuin this season. I’ll be fine with the lackluster animation or the CG horses, as long as the storytelling tries out something interesting.
Rating: – (Disappointing)

Posted on 8 July 2010 with categories: Kuroshitsuji II



Okay, so in this season my method of choosing the series to blog is going to differ a bit from the previous season. In the past spring season, I was pretty much juggling with the series that I wasn’t too sure about, until I was happy with the series that I ended up with. This season I’m still going to cover twelve anime, meaning that I’ll pick up the seven most interesting new series. However, whenever they end up disappointing or too much of a chore to write about I just drop them so that I can get some extra time, watching some of the older series that I’ve been meaning to check out.

Because honestly, this episode was pretty terrible. The two new characters really were fantastic: Claude and Alois were incredibly fun to watch, and I really want to know more about them. That’s the reason I’m blogging this series. And this is also why I’m willing to try out this series as an experiment, without having watched season 1.

Because after this season, I really don’t want to watch more of Ciel and Sebastien than necessary. Together, they’re decent, but bland. The biggest problem however, is that their friends are all annoying stereotypes and especially Ciel’s fiance is just a complete moron without any personality. This episode also just made no sense, and lacked the attention to detail that made that first episode so good. A flood appears from nowhere. Instead of running away, the characters just stand there like it’s nothing. The fiance somehow finds it a good idea to climb on a boat. There is a dam to which water flows from both sides (how the hell does that work?) and after the flood is over, it really completely disappears. It leaves no marks, or scars to the landscape, conveniently for the plot of the episode like nothing even happened.

The first episode worked because it was so incredibly camp, yet well executed, creative and shocking. The servants were all well characterized and stuff. I’m glad to see that in this link, it becomes clear that Alois and Claude will form a big part of the second season, but it also seems a post that’s mostly focused on calming down the fans of Sebastian and Ciel, portraying them as the good guys.

This really has me worried, because good guys generally tend to get more airtime than bad guys. On top of that, I also really don’t hope that the OP is spoiling the entire plot of this series. Also, didn’t Ciel supposedly die at the end of the first season? Good luck in trying to write that into the series correctly…

Oh, and for those who were wondering: there was no iota of Claude and Alois in this episode.
Rating: — (Lacking)

Posted on 2 July 2010 with categories: Kuroshitsuji II, Some Quick First Impressions

Mitsudomoe

Short Synopsis: Our lead character has to teach a class containing three really annoying problem children.
Granted, some of the jokes in this episode really were terrible, but this still is a series that turned out better than I expected. I thought that this would be another one of those dull moe series like there are so many of this season, but it actually got a number of chuckles out of me. There are a ton of problems in this show, and some parts are just plain wrong, but I admire that in the genre of moe comedies, it attempts to do things a bit different by having cute girls make no attempts at acting likable. There are a TON of fanservice jokes in this series, but think of it this way: who didn’t at the age of ten make tons of stupid sex jokes that you didn’t understand? At the moment, some jokes worked and others didn’t, so this series still can go anywhere at this point. The biggest problem with this episode was its forced stupidity. The teachers are supposed to be the straight men in this series, but at times they fail their job at building suspense of disbelief. At a certain point the girls all asked the male teacher to pull down his pants, and he just obliged to that request without questioning it, just for the sake of a small penis joke. As a straight man, you should build up some sense of realism that can be broken by the comedic characters. This guy is unfortunately too bland for that, and his female teacher love interest is just entirely terrible.
OP: Obnoxious, yet somehow catchy.
ED: Hmm, works surprisingly well.
Potential: 45%%

Shukufuku no Campanella

Short Synopsis: Our lead character is a mind-numbingly boring git.
I… have nothing. Seriously. What was that? It’s these kinds of series that really give anime a bad name. I already suspected that this show would be bad, but the depths that this series would reach were even beyond my imagination. This series is just… unbelievable in how incredibly dull it ended up to be. The characters, the dialogue, everything seems so designed to sap any sort of energy out of its viewers. The characters, and I mean EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM, become a goddamn chore to watch and listen to when they open their mouth. They just kept yapping and whining about the most pointless stuff, but the worst part was the way in which the creators seem really keen on reminding us viewer how incredibly beautiful the main cast is. Seriously, they just keep going on and on about that. The only way in which this show stands out is that girls can now get pregnant at the age of three. Worst show of the season BY FAR, this is pandering at its worst.
ED: Generic J-pop
Potential: -50%

Kuroshitsuji II

Short Synopsis: Our lead character has some sort of uber butler.
Okay, let me first explain how I went into this series: I have only seen the first episode of the original Kuroshitsuji, and I don’t really feel like checking it out at this point. The first episode felt too formulaic, it tried too hard to make Sebastien look cool and Ciel like a damsel in distress. It was too forced. However, with the new staff, new cast and new approach, I became interested in checking out the second season. And holy hell is it an improvement! I’m not sure whether I can watch or blog the rest of the series without knowledge of the first season, but nevertheless, this episode was wonderfully camp. The lead character here is an just crazy, and his butler here does things ten times crazier than what I saw in the first season. The scene especially between him and his maid was just…. WTF-worthy. And at the same time, the creators also managed to stuff in enough depth on the inner psyche of this kid, along with the weird relationship he has with his butler. It was wonderfully acted, it went over the top, yet it also had plenty of quiet and subtle moments that gave a ton of depth to these characters. Here’s definitely a big surprise this season.
OP: Standard J-rock, but very nice visuals.
ED: Nice ballad
Potential: 85%

Shoutbox

Name:
Email:
For:  
Mail will not be published
  • K-Off
    (Friday, Apr 18. 2014 03:11 PM)
    @Raggers I like people for short periods of time. No extension included though.
  • Raggers
    (Friday, Apr 18. 2014 01:32 PM)
    @kj I actually quite liked it. The MC is so fundamentally broken it’s hilarious, the fanservice is deliberately played for jokes, and in the background we got lots of exposition.
    Oh, and lets not forget the JoJo reference.
  • kj
    (Friday, Apr 18. 2014 01:17 PM)
    Is anybody else disappointed by No Game No Life episode 2?
  • Raggers
    (Friday, Apr 18. 2014 01:16 PM)
    @Aidan: I make little notes to myself in a list of things I should remember. On them are “happy places” , “people are stupid” , Izaya’s “3 day” quote, and some other observations which I feel should be held on to.
  • AidanAK47
    (Friday, Apr 18. 2014 12:47 PM)
    @Raggers, part of me knew that. But at times I try to believe humanity isn’t that stupid. God how hard I try.
  • Raggers
    (Friday, Apr 18. 2014 12:42 PM)
    @Aidan: Something I learned long ago was to never underestimate the stupidity of humanity.
    I once read that it is hard to understand someone 20 IQ points above you, and I suspect it works the other way as well.
  • AidanAK47
    (Friday, Apr 18. 2014 10:29 AM)
    You know I must wonder. Everyone hates spam bots. And pretty much everyone tends to ignore them. Meaning they are a terrible form of advertisement as it inspires hatred for your product more than interest. And yet people keep using them. I mean are there actual idiots who click on every spam bot they see?
  • Emma
    (Friday, Apr 18. 2014 05:20 AM)
    Looks like I’ll be picking up mushishi season 2 afterall, guess theres still some good stories in it I’m missing out on.
  • Juno
    (Friday, Apr 18. 2014 04:52 AM)
    BTW, Kagerou Project was a big thing I was looking forward to. Was psgels planning on checking it out at all? I need to watch the first episode, still.
  • Nyangoro
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 10:31 PM)
    Ping Pong’s second episode was so fucking good. I just love these characters.

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

Featured Posts

Clipboard07

Ping Pong – 02

Yes, I know that more people here were involved in making this series beyond Masaaki Yuasa. It’s written by the creator of Tekkon Kinkreet, Taiyo Mashimoto. That guy is awesome. And the combination between those two makes this series even better. Because here’s the thing: anime is significantly different from manga or light novels. Beyond […]

Clipboard02

Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure – Stardust Crusaders – 02

We can never quite get rid of magic fights at a school, now can we, Jojo. Ah well, I forgive it this time, just due to how hilarious it looks seeing these ridiculously bulky men walk around pretending to be high school students. It’s just so over the top, and yet Jojo sets itself apart […]

Clipboard01

Mushishi Season 2 – 02

Oh yes. This is it. This is what storytelling should be about: telling real stories about real people, all with their own problems that need to be overcome. And this show does that time and time again in just one episode. I still can’t believe how authentic this series is. The thing is, when I […]

Clipboard02

Mushishi – Tokubetsu-hen

Mushishi holds a really special place in my heart. Back in November 2005, when I started up this blog, Mushishi was one of the first shows I picked up to cover weekly. At first I didn’t think much behind it: it just looked interesting and I wanted to cover it, but as it went on […]

Seasonal Anime Podcast – First Impressions – 2013 Fall Anime Season

Hey everyone, I participated in a podcast again, together with Deadlights (Deadlight’s Anime Blog) Flawfinder (Standing on my Neck) and Slashe (Behind the Nihon Review) with two new members, Landon (Mecha Guignol) and Tom (Nigorimasen) Today we talked about the past Fall season. You can find the link here, enjoy: http://deadlightanime.blogspot.nl/2013/10/seasonal-anime-podcast-first_12.html

Clipboard07

Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Review – 89/100

There are a lot of ways to adapt something. Shounen battle series tend to very quickly fall into a very dull variation of that: really slow pacing that goes on forever with long boring drawn out battles that all look like each other. David Production looked at them, and just said “we can do better!” […]

Clipboard06

Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure – 26

Oh Jojo. What an ending. I did not expect what would happen here at all. Perhaps the ending was not as impressive as with Psycho Pass or From the New World, but still this is every way in which a shounen series should end. You hear that, other shounen series? Watch this for how endings […]

Clipboard05

Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure – 25

Okay, so I thought that this was the final episode so I was ready to go all out. And then at the end of this episode there was this “To be continued”-message. Yeah, I was confused. But boy, am I glad, because it means that there will be one more episode of Jojo. They managed […]

Clipboard06

Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure – 23 & 24

And here are the penultimate episodes of Jojo. And seriously, I loved the fights here. The creators really went to the extreme, while keeping true to their philosophy of putting huge over the top powers on one hand, and really delicate things on the other. One one hand you have Stroheim yelling like crazy, while […]

Latest Reviews

Clipboard03

Kick Heart

Okay, so I didn’t want to exit 2013 without having seen Masaaki Yuasa’s Kick Heart. It’s only twelve minutes anyway, and I consider him to be one of the best anime directors out there. The story here is pretty silly and mostly serves as a backdrop, so I mostly want to talk about the nature […]

Clipboard01

Kyousogiga Review – 90/100

Everyone’s taste is different, and that’s a wonderful thing because that allows us to have so many different forms of media that all aim toward their own niche. My blog is obviously written from the perspective of my own taste, and even when a show doesn’t cater to it (which is nearly always), I love […]

Clipboard04

Ore no Nounai Sentakushi ga, Gakuen Lovecome o Zenryoku de Jama Shiteiru Review – 80/100

Noucome! You do not want to know how long I have been waiting for a series like this. More than half a decade, at the very least. Finally a series comes along and puts the incredibly overused harem genre in its place. And it actually does it well. Thank you! So to elaborate: the harem […]

Clipboard01

Pokemon: The Origin Review – 75/100

Normally I try to avoid spoilers with these reviews, but screw it, it’s Pokemon. Pokemon The Origin is a bomb of nostalgia. If you haven’t played Pokemon Red, Blue or Green, then you will not enjoy this one slight bit. This really is made as pure undilluted fanservice for the fans of the first games. […]

Clipboard08

Tamayura – More Aggressive Review – 75/100

I’m not going to dedicate a post for my impression for the final three episodes of this series. It was just too boring to write much about. I guess that that gives a pretty accurate indication of what I think about this series. Right at the start of Tamayura’s second season, I asked one question: […]

Clipboard04

Silver Spoon Review – 86/100

When Noitamina started airing two series per season, it was amazing. It’s a timeslot that on average tends to be aimed at a much older audience than usual, and having two series with the same mentality definitely helped to bring more diversity to anime overall. Unfortunately it’s a schedule that could not be kept up […]

Clipboard07

Yondemasuyo, Azazel-San Z Review – 82,5/100

Reviewing a comedy sequel usually is quite simple: in most cases it just drops the bomb and runs out of inspiration, and in rare cases it actually manages to stay hilarious. The tricky thing with these kinds of series is that you need to remain funny, and you need to have the inspiration for that. […]

Clipboard05

Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet Review – 81/100

Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet tells the storyline of a planet that is completely submerged, with only giant ships residing on the surface, while one of those ships gets visited by this guy and his AI-mecha from this very technologically advanced civilization. Yes, this show is about world building. What this show managed to do […]

Clipboard01

Yahari Ore no Seishun no Love Come wa Machigatteiru Review – 82,5/100

I like surprises, like when a series comes that just turns out to be good against my expectations. Yahari Blahblah from the outside had all the signs to turn into yet another one of those high school comedies: snarky male lead, pointlessly long title that fails at being witty, various other cliched side-characters. And they […]