Posted on 29 June 2006 with categories: Anime Reviews, Makai Senki Disgaea



The spring season 2006 began with its ridiculous amount of series which aired. Of course, there had to be a couple of series which got marked by the majority of people as the “worst series of the season”. These series were immediately labeled as bad series. In this case, “High School Girls” and “Makai Senki Disgaea” got this title. I haven’t seen the former, but does the second one deserve that title?

Absolutely not. The fact that most people seem to forget is that this is a children’s show. You will find elements in this show that are meant for children, for example, a male main character who wants to be the demon king and burns people who oppose him to a crisp, and some characters who first appear for a second, only to be blown into the air in a team-rocket fashion because of this. The fact remains, that these events do give this show a character.

If you can not see that this show is a children’s show, you probably won’t be enjoying yourself during most of the episodes. Does this make it a fact that adults can’t watch it? Of course not. Anyone can watch it. All of the characters have personalities who are pretty easy to figure out by children. Though I really noticed after a while that each of the characters has his or her own very enjoyable personality trait. For example, Flonne’s incredible fangirling about love, Laharl’s disgust of it, Etna’s will to depend on Laharl while she actually wants to kill him, et cetera.

Episode 6, 9, 10 and 11 are incredible. In these episodes, all of the characters are really fleshed out, and it works PERFECTLY. The drama works really great. The characters’ intentions are shown, everything which happened before in the plot makes total sense, and at those times, you really can’t help to feel along with the characters. Not to mention the awesome comedy which was thrown in. The fact that this show is awesome is because of these four episodes.

The comedy thrown in also really works at times. At other times, however, the humor is more directed to children. Luckily, this doesn’t happen too often, which results in some very hilarious situations.

The voice-acting is just awesome. The creators managed to find the perfect voices for some of the characters. Especially Flonne. When she’s raving, you can really hear that her voice-actor is giving the best she has. Etna also sounds great, just as Laharl and the other characters. The OST is surprisingly interesting. It’s nothing special, though it does contain some breath-taking tunes, which really contribute to the scenes they’re played in.

The character-design looks great, though the animation might look a bit inconsistent at times. The background art makes totally up for this, though. Every outside scenery looks just stunning. And not to mention the CG. Where the character animation is falling, the CG is really shining in this anime. Especially near the end, it begins to look more impressive by the minute.

Overall, I’m recommending Disgaea to anyone who has a bit of patience. The first couple of episodes may seem a bit dull, though it soon becomes clear that these episodes were actually used to build up for the awesomeness which follows in the later episodes.

Posted on with categories: Makai Senki Disgaea



Spoilers up ahead. Do not read this post if you haven’t seen the ending of Makai Senki Disgaea yet! While not as good as the total awesomeness of the previous episode, this episode does managed to deliver an ending, worthy of being called enjoyable. It brings us the perfect bland of comedy and drama. Especially Vulcano was great.

The guy attempts to corner Laharl using brute force, but even then he doesn’t stand a chance at all. Seeing him and his minions flee was just hilarious. His beliefs were also very interesting to watch. He’s obviously an angel who’s gone corrupted because of his high status. He then tries to give Flonne all of the blame, though she comes back with some nice arguments that totally kick him into the ground. I know, it’s a simple concept, but it works.

Another thing I also loved was how different Lamington turned out to be from what I thought he would. He nicely broke the cliche of the hierarchy of an evil society. The conflict does not come at all because of the fact that he’s evil. It’s just that his beliefs and personality are totally Laharl’s opposite. Add that to the fact that he does believe in atoning for one’s sins, turning Flonne into the flower she loves most, and you’ve got yourself a very decent climax.

Though what was up with Mid-Boss? Was his only role to just be watching from the side-line and be astonished at Laharl’s decision? I have to admit, at that moment, it really contributed to the scene, though I was expecting some kind of bigger thing. Ah well, I guess we can blame that on the creators, not being able to fit his story in the twelve episodes. It’s the only rushed feeling that the series portrays.

I’ll say it again: SPOILER. Another fact which surprises me, when you consider that this is a childrens’ show, is the fact that Laharl actually gives up his life for Flonne, and he actually dies. Of course, he comes back as a Prinny. But remember the previous episode? At one time, he has to say goodbye to them, for a final time. That would’ve made for an awesome scene.

Overall, the ending was enjoyable, though it doesn’t fall in the category of awesome endings. Then again, there are only few anime who can manage to accomplish an awesome ending. This episode showed a good attempt, though!

Posted on 20 June 2006 with categories: Makai Senki Disgaea



The thing with Disgaea is, it’s either incredibly good, or incredibly bad. At least, that was the fact, until the ninth episode arrived. After that, the bad part completely disappeared. In fact, this episode was the best yet. As the story now takes its focus towards the main characters of the show, some things about Laharl were revealed. This made for a totally incredible episode.

This episode was mostly about Flonne, trying to understand Laharl better, backed up with some amazing events. Etna tells her about Laharl’s mother, which is the first time that she’s been mentioned. She died, giving her life to Laharl. The Prinnies also get their secret revealed, which totally explains their acting in the previous episodes. They appear to be the souls of criminals, who have to repent for the sins they commited. Once they’ve done that, their souls are taken back, and are reincarnated again, in the hope of them, leading a better life. The pink Prinny also returns, and she appears to be (SHOCK) Laharl’s mother! The scene at which mother and son managed to see each other for such a short time was just so incredibly sad. Kudos to the creators.

Earlier, I said that Disgaea doesn’t work when it doesn’t focus on comedy, though I entirely take that back now. This was just drama, perfectly executed. People really need to forget about the game, and remember that this is the Anime called Disgaea, and not the game. The two of them can’t be compared that easily.

I also loved Mid-Boss. He already was great in his three-second long appearances throughout the anime, but whenever he appeared, something funny happened. You could count on it that he was about to make some kind of fool out of himself, and disappear as fast as he showed up. Even though these scenes were greatly amusing, what do you think happens when the guy begins acting serious? That’s right. The huge contrast between his serious side and his wacky side had an incredible effect. That’s something that a small selection of comedy-anime understands: create a character who is on one side incredibly hyperactive/silly/whatever, and then force this person into a situation in which he or she gets an active story, and has to act serious. A lot of anime mess this up, though (Magikano, anyone?), but other anime get it right (Jubei, Siberian Yagyuu and Excel Saga, for example). It’s all about creating the impact, and Disgaea managed to do it.

You also can’t come with the argument that Disgaea just bears one-dimensional characters, without any development at all. This show is filled with it. Remember the Flonne from the beginning of the anime? At this moment, she wants to know what’s going on, compared to her rather impulsive, short-minded version at the beginning of the episode. Etna also got more relaxed after episode six and Laharl begins to listen to Flonne more and more (her ramblings on the meaning of love and peace remains hilarious, even after this many episodes).

Still, the highlight of the show remains the short reunion of mother and son. Laharl appears to have some human genes, though these made him get extremely cold when his mother passed away. I loved it when I saw that his mother didn’t want to so say goodbye for a second time. Although he said nothing at that moment, it did hit Laharl at an important spot. And that’s what matters.

Overall, this episode was amazing. Drama at its best. I’d like to see how the ones who turned Disgaea down would react when they see this episode.

Interesting detail: Flonne recognizing that Laharl and Mid-Boss look a lot alike, based on their air of exitement. ^^;

Posted on 15 June 2006 with categories: Makai Senki Disgaea



Oh, how awesome. This episode just takes the most overused clichés of a midboss-battle, and gives them a totally original twist. I couldn’t help but love it. Makai Senki Disgaea is turning more awesome by the minute as it reaches the ending. The last three episodes will probably resolve the main plot. Hmm, I wonder what those angels are up to…

In any case, I mentioned that the episode took all sorts of overused scenes for mid-boss battles (not our Mid-Boss, by the way), and gives them an extremely original twist. For starters: the main characters get to be spectators this time. This really remains the battle of Gordon and Jennifer, and Flonne makes sure for some awesome fangirling, Etan makes sure that the enemy ship gets destroyed, and Laharl just stands by watching. The characters also realize this, which makes for some pretty funny side-marks. I especially loved Flonne´s fangirling, and Laharl´s and Etna´s reaction to this. She makes sure that the two of them don´t interfere because of this. I also loved that the two of them just ran off at a certain point when the side-villain started to tell about his backstory. ^^;

Then the side-villain telling his backstory. The cheesyness of all of it managed to save it. Most anime try to throw in an extra amount of drama, with a villain who needs thirty minutes to be convinced. But this guy actually has been jealous of Gordon, being called the “Defender of Earth”, and therefore tries to beat some sense into him in an extreme way. Flonne then really gets into her part when she gets to convince the guy to stop his evil plans. After the speach, he’s about to do something. In most of these situations, the number of choices for the villain is limited to two options: 1. Do some evil thing. In this case, shoot Gordon. 2. Join the good guys. This episode managed to introduce a third option: Get blown away by some exploding machinery. A brilliant use of a Deus ex Machina, in my opinion.

Then we get thrown into another cliche: the side-villain is about to be engulfed by flames, and the main character has to choose between leaving the guy and saving the guy. The side-villain actually manages to convince Gordon to go after Jennifer, and leave him to die. Flonne has other opinions, though the Prinnies take her along with Gordon. But then again, this is another cliche, no? That’s what I also believed. Until the guy reappeared, perfectly healthy, only to commit suicide and save the day. I loved that part.

Then the main villain. How many villains manage to gain mind-control over one of the side-characters? I don’t think that amount can be counted, just take a look at Bleach and see the horror. But how many characters manage to achieve this by equipping the victim with a headband, equipped with two round, fluffy antenna’s? And how many anime make the villain call this “Transforming”? (On a side-note: I just loved Laharl and Flonne’s speculations about how the transformed Jennifer would look like ^^;).

The next cliche: the main villain has to convince the controlled character to stop being controlled. Most bad anime try to reach a climax, at which the controlled character’s emotional strength manages to break the controller (again, look at Bleach for a perfect example). Makai Senki Disgaea does not do this. Instead, the main villain attempts to blow it up, with Jennifer along with it, the side-villain shows up, grabs the headband (which was not secured at all, by the way) and jumps off a large height, killing himself.

Then we come to another cliche: the villain losing, and escaping (again see Bleach for references). Still, Makai Senki Disgaea manages to make this worthwile. For starters: he doesn’t get any help from others. Second of all, he uses a method you so would not think off. Disgaea is very good in making perfect use of semi-Deus ex Machina’s. Also, the way this was animated turned into a hilarious sight. The whole process also takes up less than a second. This fact only makes you realize what happened after it actually happened. It may be my personal taste, but I just love scenes like this.

And the last one is the villain trying to move as far away as possible, until a more important villain runs into him, and kills him anyway. Except for the fact that this isn’t a more important villain, it’s Mid-Boss. And the fact that the villain doesn’t die. Mid-Boss just says a few lines, the villain gets impressed, Mid-Boss gets hit by a comet, disappears and the villain escapes. ^^;

Overall, I was wrong with my prediction. Flonne doesn’t break down, she actually gets stronger because of it. I’m getting very curious about the last couple of episodes from this anime. In any case, I just loved her in this episode. She managed to help turning this into a true parody on mid-bosses. ^_^

Posted on 14 June 2006 with categories: Makai Senki Disgaea



Omg, an actual story. And a pretty good one as well. This is something you will not expect from an anime like this. Still, I have to say that I like it. Most comedy-anime try to introduce a plot, and fail miserably, though Makai Senki Disgaea manages to shine in this department. Especially Gordon played a great role, although I’m still having visions of him in a waitress-outfit. So wrong.

In any case, every piece of the puzzle comes together. The beauty is that you never see it coming. Both the angel from the first three episodes as Gordon, Thursday and Jennifer were into a plot by the humans to take over the demon-world. And especially Jennifer and Gordon have troubles with this, as they managed to see the demons living their daily life. It also seems that the angels are involved in this plot by the humans as well. I so can not wait for Flonne’s reaction when she finds out about this. After all of her preaching about the goodness of heaven, her world will probably be shattered when she finds out that the thing she always believed in appears to be causing the ultimate destruction.

I love the way that Disgaea is built. When you look back at it, everything seems to have been extremely well prepared. Gordon and his companions were more than just objects. The first eight episodes were actually meant in order to get the viewer introduced in the Demon world. In order to see all of the twists, and the daily lives of all of the demons. Much like Gordon and Jennifer, in a way. In the meantime, the creators filled up time by showing either some kind of filler or Laharl’s quest to find the one who ruined his life, get back to his castle and Etna’s personal problems. The recovery of the Tome of the Demons was also done in an extremely creative way. I love it when something is found when you’re actually not looking for it at all. After all, this does remain the fact in the real world, and I see too little anime who realize this.

I also loved the first part of the episode, at which there even was no clue about the story at all. I could already see what Laharl was up to even before he explained it, and it was so evil. Still, it did give some nessecary character development between the two parties before the humans invaded. And as always, Flonne’s voice-acting keeps getting better and better. This was probably one of the first times that voice-acting actually impressed me.

Posted on 13 June 2006 with categories: Makai Senki Disgaea



An episode dedicated to the prinnies. A good idea? Not really. The prinnies are just starting a revolution and Laharl is there to stop it because he wants his food. The comedy-part was a bit neglected here, unfortunately. Still, I liked Flonne’s ideas. She seems to be getting some influences from Laharl after all.

Doods.

Posted on with categories: Makai Senki Disgaea



This episode managed to deliver the same hate/love-relationship that we’ve gotten used to. Laharl runs into a little girl who pretends that she’s his little sister. In order to unmask the girl, Laharl tries to make her feel comfortable, and that’s where the episode blunders. Laharl either is an incredibly good actor, or his actions were a bit too sincere… Everything revolving around the two of them trying to fool each other was just too much over the top. The ten minutes that it took up could easily have been turned into one.

Still, that doesn’t mean that I didn’t enjoy the rest of the series. Especially the climax was brilliant. I’ve never seen such a brilliant use of a Deus ex Machina since Brian fell off a tower and got saved by aliens. (cookie for those who can identify the reference) Etna’s sarcastical view and Flonne’s continous preaching and brilliant voice acting also really helped, and don’t forget the oh so wrong crossdressing of the male captain.

The story in this episode also was pretty well written. There was nothing wrong with the motives of the bad guys, and it seemed that they indeed prepared a lot. The only things wrong with the episode were the fact that Laharl just randomly wandered in without a reason, and the illogical acting of some of the characters.

Posted on 24 May 2006 with categories: Makai Senki Disgaea



Okay, everyone who wrote this series down really needs to take a look at episode six. The children’s elements are still clearly visible, but apart from that, the episode’s brilliant! It nearly killed me from laughter at times.

I knew it was a good idea to keep following this series. We start with our “heroes” walking over a very fragile and more importantly long bridge between two floating islands, over a vast mass of nothingness. There’s no continuity in these masses, and Laharl quickly gives Flonne a demonstration of their characteristics. ^^ They then end up at another large, dark castle, at which the one who put the reward on Laharl’s head is said to live. They got the directions from Sardia, from last episode.

Inside the castle, Laharl puts his plan of collecting his own reward into action. He sees a butler (a miniature-zombie with a very introvert personality), who tells him the master of the house is coming soon. The master appears to be an extremely girly demon, up to the point at which it becomes funny. He gets giddly over everything. Then, Etna reveals to be actually working for this guy. She grabs a large, black box and captures Flonne and Laharl into it.

The black box appears to be a kind of board-game, at which the ones who get caught into it will be living out random lives for all eternity. I so loved this. You can really see that the creators had lots of fun trying to think of different roles for Laharl and Flonne to play (imagine seeing Flonne as the leader of a motor-gang, hairstyle included, and Laharl as a ballet-dancer and a sumo-wrestler ^^).

Etna, meanwhile, has problems of her own. It appears that she actually had some reasons to work for the castle lord (apparently named Maderas), as he stole some of her memories. She worked out her part of the deal, so she asks Maderas to give in to his part. Of course, this is a children’s anime and Maderas is a devil, so he refuses. Etna notices him looking at a suspicious-looking painting, so she suspects the memories to be there. She gets kicked out by Maderas, who goes to take a shower afterwards. She sneaks in, only to find the memories being absent from behind the painting and realizing she walked into a trap.

Maderas threatens to let her memories lose upon the demon-world. These memories come in three different kinds of levels, ranging from mildly to normal to highly embarrassing memories. Furthermore, these seem to be memories of an unrequited love. I wonder who the person that she loves might be. It doesn’t get mentioned anywhere in the episode. Still, it does show that the show is actually capable of delivering some character background. Laharl also gets a bit, in a flashback at which his father tries to teach him a lesson about the reliability of demons. Very enjoyable indeed.

I loved Etna at this part. She tries a bit of acting, and ends up imitating a crying little girl. Too cute. Maderas then tells her that he’ll give her her memories back, if she throws the box with Laharl and Flonne in it in the fire. You would expect an Etna who begins to struggle with her feelings. Hell no! She just throws them in the fire, like it’s nothing. When Maderas again breaks his promises, Etna really gets angry, and Mid-Boss arrives to save the day. At least, that’s his version. As he stands outside, the fog surrounding the castle blinds him, he throws some random roses, and disappears again. ^^

The roses, however, hit three suspicious Prinny statues, revealing them to be actual Prinnies, petrified. They then reveal that Maderas put the memories inside the Prinnies for safe-keeping (you were expecting a quest through the castle in order to find al three of them, weren’t you? ;)). With this, Etna feels confident enough to release Laharl and Flonne from their burning prison, after which she quickly hurries to silence the Prinnies, who nearly can’t bear to not tell about her embarrassing memories.

I’ll ignore the next scene for now. Basically, Maderas summons an army of mechanical angels who keep yelling peace-inducing quotes. This doesn’t really work, and it gets carried a bit too far. Flonne is about the only one who can manage to do this right. Laharl manages to recover in time, and Etna takes gets scary. She then reveals her motivations for helping him. She was actually waiting for the right opportunity in order to get revenge on the bastard who ruined her life. The Prinnies, meanwhile, can’t hold back anymore, and release Etna’s memories. Everyone inside the castle gets to see them. The viewers, however, don’t. Like I said, I wonder whether we’ll be able to see them once. Eventually, Laharl and Etna manage a truce.

This anime is actually well developed, full of surprises, and there’s been an exceptional attention to detail. The bridge, for example. Flonne breaks one step of it, and some pieces of wood fall down. About a minute later, we see the same wood, falling down again, suggesting the dimensional gateway between the top and bottom. Laharl sees this as well, so he sends Flonne into the void as well, knowing that she’ll just end up back at the bridge. Flonne also notices a rose-petal before the three of them enter the castle. This suggests that Mid-Boss is in the area, just waiting to make an appearance. Etna, also sees Maderas look at his portrait in a very suspicious way, and figures that her memories might be there. Then, this seems to have been the intention of Maderas all along. And the Prinny Statues. I kept wondering why Maderas would keep some statues of a Prinny, but then it appeared that they were to actually guard Etna’s memories. It’s these little details that I can appreciate.

In terms of voice-acting, this anime also is amazing. Especially Laharl, and most importantly Etna and Flonne sound awesome. Flonne with her screaming is just way too cute, and Etna’s voice really fits her when she turns evil and manipulative. In terms of the relationships between the different characters, this anime also is brilliant. Just think of Etna who desperately tries to stop the Prinnies from doing something stupid, Laharl ignoring Flonne on short terms, but getting more used to her on long terms, Etna either being incredibly dependant or incredibly manipulative towards Laharl and Mid-Boss trying to get our heroes’ attention at almost every episode, only to disappear five seconds later.

Overall, this anime is going into the right direction. Elements of children’s shows are definately visible, but they’re packaged inside something brilliant. It’s just too bad of episode 3 and 4. These seemed to make no sense at all, and the more I think about it, the more badly they were executed.

Posted on 7 May 2006 with categories: Makai Senki Disgaea



Yes, this show is meant for children. And thus, it suffers from the flaws most of the children-shows suffer from. Laharl just wanders around aimlessly and runs into random things for no apparent reason. At least, the bad guy (girl in this case) is the only one who knows this reason, as she’s apparently been waiting for him. The fights are also extremely simple. One slash or one blow and it’s over. Ah well, at least it beats Bleach’s fights. The characters also like to sing and act at random times (look back to episode three, and this episode had Laharl imitating an old Japanese-theatre). Characters also don’t need reasons, and when they do, they usually are based out of boredom (still, in Laharl’s case, they do give him a character). It also works with lots of reused-scenes. Especially the ones reused 20 times can get a bit on my nerves.

Still, the fact that it’s a children’s show also has a few good signs. To begin with, the repetition really works at times. Just take a look at Mid-Boss’ ramblings, Sardia’s continious use of the word ‘maybe’, and Etna’s struggles to not being found out by Laharl. I also notice that persons are incredibly dependant on each other. It offers a nice variation when compared to all the other anime, which try to make their characters as independant as possible. I especially love Etna in this issue. She wants the king dead, but still she clings to him for protection. It’s so cute to see. It’s also a good thing that this show knows that it’s horribly predictable, as it makes use of this at times. I’m referring to the dinner-scene. The scene’s so obvious, and Etna indeed makes indeed a comment about this, and how he’s the easiest to poison in the entire demon-world. This is quite funny, as she was the one who poisoned him in the first place.

Also, because we’re dealing with a children’s show, the art of the backgrounds has become a little brighter. Combine that with the fact that this show’s supposed to play in hell, and you get an interesting concept, which really shows. A dark forest is suddenly vibrant with colors, the desert has been more yellow than it ever was, giving it a very warm feeling, and a small lake really contrasts well with its blue water against the green grass. I found myself enjoying these backgrounds whenever a scene was taking place outside.

Makai Senki Disgaea is indeed not the best anime out there, but I love the characters somehow. They’re all like a couple of little children, with each of them trying to be something. In Laharl’s case, he wants to be cool. In Etna’s case, she wants to be with Laharl, though she tries to deny it completely. In Flonna’s case, she wants Laharl to learn about the beauties of life, even though she doesn’t understand these herself yet. These characters are each so adorable to watch, even though the show itself might be totally ridiculous.

Posted on 2 May 2006 with categories: Makai Senki Disgaea



This anime definately could have been executed better. The first two episodes showed potential, though the third and fourth episode clearly show that this is an anime for little kids. Still, I have to say that this episode featured parts that I really enjoyed.

One thing that this anime does exceptionally well, are the running jokes, or however you call the jokes that keep returning. I’m referring to Etna’s struggles to keep Laharl away from his wanted-poster. Occasionally, our group runs into one of these things, and each time she has to make up some kind of excuse in order to keep him away from these posters, with some very funny and enjoyable results.

In this episode, it became clear that Laharl’s father’s butler took over while he was asleep, though Laharl’s father’s butler’s son has reached a rebellious age, and wants more attention from his father. Thus, he sells the book which is sortof like the symbol of being king, to an old junk-seller, who sells it again to our space-adventures. I don’t think they’ll be keeping it for long, but still. This storytelling kindof reminds me of the troubadours in the medieval period. They were travelling storytellers, who lived by telling stories to important people. Each day, he’d tell one part of the story, and meanwhile, he got to stay in the castle. So, in order to be smart, the troubadours kept extending their stories. The first day, the brave knight had to rescue a princess. The second day, it became clear that in order to save the princess, he had to rescue a dragon, but the third night told of a sword which was needed to defeat the dragon, and so on, and so on. When the tensions began to rise, or the story just began to take too long so that people began to get tired of him, the troubadour would quickly end all of these sub-stories, and leave the castle.

Somehow, I was reminded of this concept while watching Disgaea. Laharl wants to become king, but in order to become king, he has to defeat the current king, now this current king is defeated, it suddenly appears that he needs a book. I see that it’s not exactly the same as described above, but it certainly bears resemblances. I think this cat-and-mouse-game will continue untill the end of the series. Still, with a bit of luck, I’m going to be finishing it. I know that once this anime tries, it can do good, and I still love the art.

CHANGE USERNAME
SuperMario
@Kaiser: right. The sole reason I described it as "cinematic" was just to lure you into watching it, so mission accomplished! Mind you, Girls' Last Tour is still a moe show at heart (look at their round faces and those big eyes. They're killing me)
Kaiser-Eoghan
But in all seriousness, I had had it initially written off as a crap moe show.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: You're ministry of anime propaganda tactics mentioning how cinematic it is got me to pick it up =P And you know how much of an aesthetics guy I am =P
SuperMario
I'm glad that many of you enjoying Girls' Last Tour. It's a nice little gem that I think works best when you going to it without any expectation
SuperMario
I swear this season has a lot of good anime to offer. I'm jaded
Amagi
I always considered backgrounds as pretty important. Most anime only use them as backdrops because they have to be there somehow and it's really a different thing than Girls' Last Journey for example. Also I will like everything that has exploration and world building.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And achieves taking the viewer into its world, thankfully without relying on tons of expositional dialogue.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Girls last tour, somewhat succeeds in pulling me in by using its landscape that dwarfs the characters, to create its atmosphere, I wouldn't call it all that unfunny either. Though premise could risk going stale.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, HA! Yeah I would like to believe but I am thinking that's not the case. Besides next season is looking pretty barren so far.
Amagi
Eden would be great. But speaking of it, a lot of good manga get adapted recently. Maybe they finally understood that generic isekai, harem and school stuff isn't as popular as they thought it would be.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Maybe one day I can hope for a Freesia or Eden Endless world adaptation.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Jesus christ....I never thought it would happen, Banana fish is being adapted, I didn't think they could adapt a shoujo like that in todays market.
KTravlos
I also watched Inuyashiki and Girl's Last Tour. Inuyashiki looks great. Man do I hate that young guy. Reading what he did and seeing it was a totally different experience. Cannot wait for the next episode.

Girls Last Tour is really something special. In a good way.
KTravlos
Altair's episode showed all the issues and all the good things of the show. The pace is too quick, and yet they managed to build Urado and its denizens up quick fast in it. But again, this is a show that needs the LGOH treatment.
Amagi
The manga also always uses "he/him" but I am not sure if the original had this too (like "kare" or similar words) since you can talk for a long time in Japanese without ever using pronouns.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah, yes I noticed Phos uses Boku in this episode which is the male way of saying I.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Man, Zvyagintsev really, really knows how to deliver truly emotional gut punching moments and endings that are like cutting at open wounds.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Houseki has fallen into place for me with those scenes with Dia and the snail thing and I've fully embraced the show, happy to see it just continue to do its thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: While Marios are girls best friend DIAmonds ahhhhre for evvvvvvahhh *Shirley Basey voice*
Masky
*bride
Masky
I can say though that if people fear the "Bastard Boyfiend" angle, its not that really. Its more of really weird apprenticeship relationship. Ainsworth is inhuman character in many ways
Masky
Oh hey, Mahoutsukai no Yome is on covered list. Nice, it is weird manga to read through since I'm kind of creeped out by the bribe thing, but its barely mentioned at all.
Anonymous1497942
After finishing Made in Abyss it stuck out, some animation shortcuts in this week's Mahoutsukai. Holding on frames a bit too long, mainly having the music giving the emotion. To be fair, it was also a slow part in the manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
If I recall correctly, the words "wandering Jew" were used at one point in the manga in relation to the villain.
Lenlo
Mahoutsukai was very pretty this week, but there were some troubling things popping up in there.
SuperMario
@Aidan: They are trying to bring Phos back from a snail. Man, Houseki sure is... quirky
AidanAK47
@Mario, I would take a guess and say they are fighting evil by moonlight.
SuperMario
Okay, heading to Houseki now... let's see our gems doing this week
SuperMario
@Bokusen: (not because I'm blogging it but) watch it. it's a polarized one but it at least offers something original. I still haven't watched the third one though.
Anonymous1497873
The new Mahoutsukai no Yome episode was so beautiful. TwT
Bokusen
BTW, is Houseki no Kuni worth watching? I was turned off by the animation, but I've read some good reviews on it.
Bokusen
Darn, last message didn't show up for me but now it does. Sorry about that.
Bokusen
Tanya the Evil and Uchouten Kazoku 2 were the gems this year for me so far, but Abyss was definitely the best thing I watched last season.
Bokusen
Tanya the Evil & Uchouten Kazoku 2 were the gems this year for me so far, though Abyss was definitely the best thing I watched last season.
Amagi
Doesn't mean that there weren't other good series but I distinguish between good and somethin special I will instantly remember even months or years later.
Amagi
How can you not like at least one of the current series, this season is pretty good. MiA was probably my only real great thing in the last season though.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Aren't you forgetting Acca, Rakugo, Little Witch Academia and Tanya the Evil?
Anonymous1497006
Made in Abyss seems like it's the only gem this year for me tbh
AidanAK47
Whoa, I never even knew we had a PM feature.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I've received it. Thanks Kaiser. I've never noticed the PM feature either
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I sent you a private message.
SuperMario
oh boy. Just received Mind Game Bluray Region free today. I ordered/funded it through Kickstarter a year ago and eventually forgot about it. Was a nice surprise to see it in the mail today
silver
I enjoyed this week's Kino. Leave only footprints indeed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
On the other hand I noticed some slight censoring in juuni taisen episode 3 I think.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I was also surprised with the lack of censorship during Inuyashiki's second episode.
Kaiser-Eoghan
First episode of inuyashiki covered the whole of volume 1.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*but almost never
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: In general, Death of Stalin is an amusing film throughout, but never laugh out loud hilarious, Simon Beale is hilarious in it as Beria.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Gonzo did that mecha 7 samurai thing we must never speak of. However schmaltzly/sentimental Ikiru is, however it slumps slightly in the middle and final arc , it was still a genuinely moving film.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*than it is
Kaiser-Eoghan
To elaborate, I expected to dislike inuyashiki based on not enjoying Gantz, my reaction to the second episode was the same as Amagi's . The first episode was heavy handed a bit as Aidan mentioned, but its harder to watch that scene with the older guy get bullied/tormented that it is to watch highschool kids getting picked on by cliche anime thugs.
AidanAK47
Also why Hillary Clinton? I mean i know Trump is supposed to have a cameo in the manga but why her?
AidanAK47
@Vyse, Lets not jinx it. Plenty of series have shown great potential in their second episodes only to flop later. We can sing praises if it keeps this quality to the conclusion.
VyseLegendaire
Inuyashiki main villain should be Hillary Clinton
VyseLegendaire
Inuyashiki is suddenly like the best thing of the decade.
Amagi
I wish there were more old MC series out there. Liked that about Real Drive too. Maybe someone will have mercy and adapt Kurosawa one day. Not exactly old but at least a series about a guy with midlife crisis.
Amagi
I thought the happenings of the second Inuyashiki episode would have been too egdy but they actually gave the last few scenes a very good impact and the episode showed pretty well how sociopathes think (that whole gap between emotions for real people VS manga/fiction characters and events)
KTravlos
yup, I have no problem with Lenlo's review. Execution is what matters with me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: You managed to sell me on a show that I didn't think I'd have bothered with.
silver
You did fine. It's a risk associated with reading post-viewing episodic discussions. Pretty much everyone knows that if you don't want to be spoiled don't even get online.
Lenlo
I tried to leave explicit spoilers about what happened outside the (more...) tag, but its a risk of readin a review I suppose.
silver
Hah, sorry about spoiling it. That's the problem with major shocks like that; they're most effective if you're not expecting them. Still, the show has deft execution of its executions, and that makes the experience worse than I could imagine.
Lenlo
Well im glad it convinced you. Tried something different with writing this week
KTravlos
man I should not had read the review. Now I will go and watch Inuyashiki. I had missed it.
silver
@Lenlo: It caught me off guard, too. Definitely working to earn that 'psychological' genre tag.
Lenlo
Well... Inuyashiki surprised me today. It went far darker than I was expecting. Thanks Gants author
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Such an odd art style, have you ever seen these? These are the film covers the Polish get:
Kaiser-Eoghan
*that was the most interesting character
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Z's ending was very very well played and it was Jean Tringnents was interesting, largely for that he was a right winger working with the left wingers.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And of course the British version of house of cards.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wonder if he's seen Yes Minister and The New Statesman, also political comedies and for those of us who lived in the 80s seeing Thatcherites getting slagged off was great.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I do think thick of it works better though as the humour serves a thirty minute episode more comfortably. Stalin's fairly short though so I don't think the joke will run out.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: the Death of stalin is the title I'm looking for as well. Will screen here in few weeks. I almost reccomend In the Loop and the Thick of It (haven't watched the latter though) for Travlos since they're a political satire, which I think he'll enjoy
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Hope you already booked that heavens feel screening, cause its sold out.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've heard that the anime's character development in Juuni taisen expands on the books, which only give them short lines for their backgrounds.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah, so perhaps in Juuni taisen they'll spin that so the Rat guy uses the ox guy to his advantage in some different way.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: There is a special atmosphere watching anime on a big screen.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I might be seeing death of Stalin tomorrow or Saturday. The thick of it was hilarious and this has the same director as that.
SuperMario
Both Z and All the President's Men are coassic movie. Hold my attention from start to finish. Z, in particular, wowed me that I literally had my mouth wide open
SuperMario
Off tangent, watching Fireworks in the cinema the other day made me realize how I miss watching movies on the big screen. I might try to go to the cinema once a week again. Been missed out all the good movies lately.
SuperMario
In the Great Race story, Rat used a very underhanded tactic to win the race (it jumps into the Ox to pass the great river and then jump off to the finish line. This Rat guy's speciality is Killing All so there is a high chance that he survives till the end
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I have no doubt that we will have more amazing character arcs for Juuni Taisen.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But that could prove to be too predictable.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wonder if the Rat guy is going to be the wild card in all this, after all in the old story, wasn't it the Rat who won that zodiac race thing?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Juuni Taisen is killing off its most interesting characters.... =< I wanted the bird girl to stay around a bit longer.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd love to see more Lem or Stugastky style/brand of scifi, I need to rewatch stalker again.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Going back to the cyberpunk thing, I don't want just any ol' thing getting made, I want to see something scifi related thats ACTUALLY clever and has long and DIFFICULT dialogue .
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: While not a political series Chaos;head is a good example of being annoyed at the conspiracy thing, what drives me up the wall about that show and its sequel is how every every time I think about going back to it I realize that its only interesting on a surface level and is utter hokkum.
KTravlos
@Kaiser. Yup, perhaps because I work in political science, they tend to anger me. So I avoid them. Borgen is a good political series.

In general. It still startles how much of a better character anime Tsutomu was comapred to manga Tsutomu in Bridy the Mighty. But I forgive the manga as I get more Gomez!
AidanAK47
@Amagi/Kaiser, thought as much. Strike it off the list then. And God Tsubasa was a cluster fuck by the end.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Eh simul-dub of Juuni taisen is out, I might aswell keep up with that instead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I had this weird relationship with dragonball in general. When I was younger I never actively seeked out the show, but on a rare occasion I would watch random episodes whenever I was channel hopping and nothing else was on.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Clamp shared universe was a mistake.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I really really wish that that tone breaking style of comedy stops being a thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It doesn't happen often, but there ARE shows we all have that snap trigger us when they get mentioned.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel my disdain of re:zero is because I hate Akame ga kill and Higurashi so much and it prevents me because of bias from enjoying it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: In addition to what i posted about Pandora, you will hate the comedy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I will rewatch it, the first one is one of those things that improved on repeat viewings.
@Travlos: Conspiracy theories are one of those things I find myself taking interest in, then almost immediately consider immensely stupid and a waste of time.
Amagi
Aidan: If you didn't like the first parts of Pandora you won't like the rest either. Most people that loved it did this because of the characters and setting, the story isn't really getting better and I kinda disliked what they did near the end. It was overcomplicated and everyone had like three different personalities, plot twists and so on. Not nearly as bad as Tsubasa Chronicle though
AidanAK47
@Bokusenou, believe me when I say you are not few. There are plenty who Dislike Re:Zero. I can understand it and I sort of get where your coming from regarding the characters. (Though Saber sucks) There is just something about the series that I just adore.
KTravlos
@Kaiser. I have not watched most of them. But I have watched Z and All the President's Men. Both are great films. The issue with me is that while I like political thrillers I despite conspiracy theories. Far too many pol. thrillers dive into con.theory stuff. So I must be discriminating.
SuperMario
Okay, I'm off to watch Blade Runner 2049 now. Hopefully it can be as good as the original
Vonter
In contrast World's End Harem, surprisingly looks to be trying. It has one story trying to play straight, the scenario of being the last man in a world mainly habited by woman. And has had this framing of self worth, temptation and doubt I like. No work of art, but surprising for this type of manga.
Vonter
In regards to manga, I'll need to look for something good, being losing time with ecchi stuff. Which I can tell Okamoto should just make hentai, seeing as his latest work, doesn't even try to be anymore than pandering trash (at least older work, had a notion of a story).
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: Did all the presidents men and Parallax view by Pakula appeal to you?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: Actually as your are a Greek....have you watched Z, missing, State of siege or the confession? None of them are actually in Greek but they were political thrillers directed by Costa Gravas.
Anonymous1490677
KT here: Well I am a sucker for political thrillers and "grand" politics, so the direction it took is quite fun for me. Even if it does indicate a Tomino ending.
Kaiser-Eoghan
For me Titan peaked at volume 8 and I never bothered continuing on much further.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: I remember a commenters on here a good while ago that mentioned the ending didn't satisfy or come together well and made the investment not worth it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Honestly it was only near the halfway point I vested any interest in pandora hearts, the first 4 volumes left me wondering if I'd drop it, then near the last few volumes I simply fell out of reading it.
Bokusenou
I feel like I'm one of the few people who don't understand why Re: Zero is so popular...the only characters I half liked were Puck & Crusch (the latter because she reminded me of Saber from the Fate series, minus the unnecessary perma-blush marks) My anime club screened the series and I really should have skipped those meetings...
Lenlo
Mmm Inuyashiki episode 2 tomorrow. Time to see where it goes
AidanAK47
@Anon, That reminds me. Anime limited better announce the date of the Re:Zero Blu-ray release at that panel of theirs at MCM London Comic Con. They are the only ones known to have licensed it and they have a partnership with Funimation. Even if we don't get a second season I have to get the first on Blu-ray.
Anonymous1490189
Emilia re:zero
AidanAK47
Finally Got that review up. Been sitting in my to do list for a while.
SuperMario
I remeber in Dragon ball, they state that Son Goku takes 6 years of training to become a Super Saiyan. His oldest son takes 3 years and then the youngest one... only takes 3 months of training with his mother. So yeah...
AidanAK47
While we are talking about manga, I was looking into getting some manga boxsets and I saw one for pandora hearts. However I started reading it and 15 chapters in I just can't get into it. I hear a lot of praise for it but is it really worth continuing?
AidanAK47
@Amagi, yep. Like Naruto with the nine tailed beasts and Sharingan. At first they were cool and then everyone and their mother had Sharingan or a tailed Beast.
Though If I had a problem with SNK its that I just find the thing to be poorly written overall. It has creative idea's, but the characters and dialogue is really weak in my eyes.
Amagi
You know that SuperSaiyan syndrome. At first it was special and mysterious, but once the second one gets to have the power they tend to pop up everywhere. Same with Claymore and basically almost every shounen ever.
Amagi
I overall like the SNK manga but I have to agree I really have a problem with this shounen trope of some speciality one character has that suddently turn out to be the speciality of many.
Lenlo
It turned from a horror/thriller to a sort of... shounen mystery thing for me. I wasnt a fan once EVERYONE became titans.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, I dropped off at that point, picked it up again and read it up to date. Now I am falling out again. True be told I haven't really got into it since the beginning chapters and I am not a fan of the direction it took. If you don't like it now I say future chapters won't really change your mind.
Lenlo
Does Attack on Titan get better? I was reading it up until Season 2 came out and then just fell off the wagon.
KTravlos
oh what a cliffhanger in the Shingeki no Koyjin manga! I am happy where this is going!
Kaiser-Eoghan
I agree that the way the series addresses emotion has some interest to it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The later chapters I read had some action in them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Had a read of the children of the wales manga, I am glad to see a shoujo that isn't based on an otome or school life series , additionally I like it on an aesthetic level, I can see it going somewhere but the fast-forward pace makes it hakes it harder to connect with.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Blame! was recently adapted and thats cyberpunk, even if it didn't follow the manga.
Amagi
@Kaiser: Agree. Cyber- and steampunk are two of the few settings I really dig. Especially because I think that there are a lot of potential plots and twists for cyberpunk/VR settings anime haven't used yet. AR is great too, the only series about that is Dennou Coil and it was made ~10 years ago. Maybe the SAO movie but it was just a movie.
Amagi
@Aidan: Same here lol. I remember the toilet thingy but not the woman's backstory. That being said, I enjoyed the series as whole, though some parts were too K-ONish for my taste.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The idea of would agorophobia maintain itself and they'd stay inside or would the fear of being raped/tortured/killed and bypass the agorophobia ?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Random tangent, but I would find it fascinating to see a hikkikomori subject to a home invasion.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Although honestly, I would prefer a cyberpunk wave of anime series to get popular again.
silver
I too am starting to really enjoy the 'adventure anime' genre. The medium of animation is uniquely suited to fantastical worldbuilding.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Was that the one where the girl is desperately trying not to piss herself? Also why can I remember that and not this blonde woman's backstory?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: yep, agreed. It's at its best when it can use the settings to flesh out the characters. The episode after that one, one the other hand, was Sora no woto's dullest episode - where the main girl spends the whole episode waiting for a freaking phone call.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: The Blonde woman's backstory in the middle of sora no oto, that was the best episode of it.
SuperMario
@Amagi: for reccomendation, if you don't mind another cute girls in a post-apocalyptic world show, you can try Sora no Woto (Sound of the sky). I love that show to bits
SuperMario
But I'm not entirely sold on the show yet. I feel the relationships are a tad too heavy-handed. The light hearted tones don't work well for me but I really feel a From the New world's vibe from the show
SuperMario
@Amagi: I will talk about Children of the Whales here in the chatbox since we don't cover it. Damnit the cliffhanger. That series really focuses on the theme of repress their own feelings. From the children in the Mud Whales with their custom of not to cry in the funeral or their lacing their hands to express their gratitude. Episode 2 has that monster who basically eats others emotions
Kaiser-Eoghan
And by extension, I would hope that it would encourage adaptations of older fantasy manga aswell.
Amagi
I really hope this type of fantasy will become a new trend instead of the classical world of warcraft type of isekai
Amagi
There is just something really atmospherical about a few characters exploring an unknown world alone that is either almost or entirely devoid of humans or just weird like in Kino's Journey.
Amagi
Shuumatsu Shoujou, Houseki, Kino 2017 and Children of the Whales are shaping up to become my favorites this season. It's funny that they have so much in common, same with Made in Abyss, which also was my favorite of the last season.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, well there were fellows down in cork that decided to go Kite Surfing. They had to send out a boat to rescue the dumb bastards.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: I saw that there were some profoundly stupid people ignoring the warnings, some guy even decided to go out swimming despite it.
AidanAK47
I am in some ways both relieved and disappointed.
Total users: 29

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