Posted on 19 December 2011 with categories: Anime Reviews, Nurarihyon no Mago




I really was not pleased with the first season of Nurarihyon no Mago. It started off decently, and then it went on… and on… and on… and eventually it forgot to actually deliver. As a shounen jump adaptation, its source material had plenty of time to carefully build up its story, and this show actually ended up dragging that out even more. That definitely was not fun.

In any case, the second season looked promising: the pesky build-up was over: we now know the major characters, and it’s finally time to get to the meat of this series. So of course this show dives into multiple training arcs that are dedicated to making the characters stronger. Do you see the problem with this franchise?

However, I have to give this sequel credit: it is much, much better than the first season. Studio Deen put completely different staff members on it, and they fit this kind of story much better. The direction in particular is excellent and delivers some impressive characterization. The graphics also got a significant upgrade: just about everything looks better here. The animation is more detailed, but in particular the art and camera angles are much more detailed and imaginative, to the point of actually turning this series into a show with a ton of eye candy (this show also has one of the best character designers out there, and with this season, you can finally see why).

The storyline for the sequel is also far from as flimsy as the first season was. It’s deeply rooted in the past of many of the important characters, and it actually means something to the cast. It’s much easier to sympathize with both the main characters and the villains (also rejoice: Rikuo’s annoying classmates are much more bearable and play a far less prominent role, to the point of actually vanishing for most of the airtime). So if only it didn’t break up its pacing so often.

Yeah, most series have an average arc-length of around five episodes. This arc lasts a whopping 24 of them. That’s just way too long, and by far its most nasty habit is that Rikuo just randomly gets pulled out of the action, in order to train, get stronger and acquire a new power. These training arcs are way too bloody long, and really prevents this show from getting going until near the end of the show. But at that point, it really takes off, and delivers a solid semi-ending. It doesn’t wrap everything up, but the emotional closure is really well done there.

Is it worth it to sit through 48 episodes of this thing though? Nah. All I can say is: it will get better. But the problem with shounen jump adaptations is that they just have way too much time to waste. The currently airing Hunter X Hunter is the first in a long while to actually avoid this flaw. I’m giving it a solid rating for its execution, but that’s only because I don’t include the first season in it, which you unfortunately need to have seen in order to get what’s going on here. Go for this if you’re really bored.

Storytelling: 7/10 – Takes way too bloody long to get to its point and breaks up its flow too much with training arcs. Otherwise very solid, though.
Characters: 8/10 – This arc finally is dedicated to the characters, and gets some good things out of them.
Production-Values: 9/10 – A surprising amount of eye candy in this show.
Setting: 8/10 – There has gone quite a bit of attention to youkai lore into this series.

Suggestions:
Tactics
Tenpou Ibun Ayakashi Ayashi
Pandora Hearts

Posted on with categories: Nurarihyon no Mago

Bah, the creators couldn’t go through with it. In this episode, Nue is defeated… and retreats, along with the other evil youkai around him. It’s a shame: this would have been a great point to just close off this series.

But this also settles it: for me, this series has ended right now. The thing is: Abe no Seimei retreated in order to recover. This will take about 1 year. So yeah, we’re going to do the bloody cycle all over again, and train for a full year to get stronger in order to be able to fight him again. I do not have patience for that. Even if there will be a third season, I’m not going to watch this. This is just right for a conclusion, I don’t want to watch this drag out any longer. This shows that even with a director who really fits this series, there’s only so much you can do with this kind of source material.

And besides, this episode was really good apart from the retreat. With this, this show at least left a good taste behind, rather than what happened last year. The fight against Nue was the action packed climax I had been expected, and Rikuo came with a very good way to defeat him: just use the power of all of his comrades at the same time. Things got even better in the second half, in which a dream sequence reunited all three generations of the Nura-clan. That kind of closure, I can live with.

Also was this really Studio Deen? I mean, the animation throughout this entire episode was really good here. The camera angles were just excellent, the use of colours was really good, and especially the sparring match between the three Nura-commanders was quite nicely animated.

After this though, I really do hope that Studio Deen will get back to what they were good at. They once were the studio that might be bad at animating, but made up for it by picking up a lot of shoujo and seinen, daring and original premises and deliver a lot of bold and new storytelling ideas. The last show that had that was Giant Killing, and even that show came after a long drought. Nurarihyon no Mago was nice, but it wasn’t why I became a fan of them. It’s such a shame to see talent go wasted like this, especially after how Gonzo is showing that you CAN crawl back up from these depths.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 11 December 2011 with categories: Nurarihyon no Mago

So, this seems to be heading into an anime original ending? Let me say the following: as someone who didn’t read the manga, I didn’t notice this. In a way, I do agree with the decision to end at this point: this show should not be allowed to drag on any longer. I’ve heard that the next arc will be even longer than this one. There’s no way that I’m going to watch that. This will be good closure, if it indeed is handled well.

My only complaint about this episode was that Abe no Seimei is a very stereotypical villain with one-sided motives. Still, it’s not a case where all hope is lost. This episode was very solid in how it delivered the background of the girl who would once become Hagoromo Gitsune. That was actually a great closure for her story.

The pacing here was fine as well (and hey: people actually bother to distract the main enemy while giving others the chance to talk). A lot of stuff happened in this episode, which is a really major difference to how this show once was with its endless stream of build-up.

Now, for the anime original ending, this series needs to remember the largest flaw of these kinds of endings: the fact that they nearly always tend to play it too safe. That’s the big issue with nearly every single one of them, in one way or the other. I’ll hold my breath for this one, but at the same time: I can actually see an ending being possible here. Much more than usual.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 5 December 2011 with categories: Nurarihyon no Mago




Seriously, this is the best I’ve seen Studio Deen in since Giant Killing ended. For the first time in one year and two months (which is a really long time for a studio that releases so many series), I’ve been impressed by these guys again on a series. It is about bloody time.

Obviously Hunter X Hunter is the best shounen at the moment, but still: after being disappointed by Ao no Exorcist, the first Nurarihyon no Mago series, Sket Dance, Toriko, Bakuman’s first season, Sacred Seven and Tegami Bachi Reverse, it feels very good to see a shounen actually end well. This conclusion was what a conclusion should be. Not just “let’s just kick the bad guy’s ass and get things over with”. Have things happen at the same time. Put things at stake. Nue’s resurrection worked really well for that. It’s just such a damn shame that we had to wait forty bloody five episodes for that to happen.

I can see the intentions of Nurarihyon no Mago: a shounen series about leading an army. Most shounen leads really are a hundred years too early to be leading an actual army, so it definitely has potential. But then make it about actually leading an army. This show dabbled way too often in things that just did not batter in the long run. The anime is at fault, but the story of the manga also did not help: the introduction still was way too long. Because of that, there is no way that I’m going to recommend this series. But now that I’ve gotten so far, it’s at least very gratifying that my patience is finally being rewarded.

Nue’s resurrection in particular was a great way to spice this arc up. As the red thread connecting everything for the villains: there are a lot of different parties, but it’s this desire for Nue (or Abe no Seimei that connects all of them together, with his mother, Hagoromo Gitsune at the center). Her end here was pretty good with the revelation of how the body that she used to inhabit was pretty much used. The constant flashbacks to the part where Rikuo’s father was killed also paid off here, with the revelation of how things really went. A surprisingly good example of the use of repetition.

Also, the animation at the part where the Skull died. Good stuff there.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 28 November 2011 with categories: Nurarihyon no Mago



What a difference compared to the climax of the first season this is. Back then, this was the point at which everything collapsed in a slew of dull fights after dull fights. This however is much more dynamic. There are a lot of things happening at the same time, and there is a lot of meaning put into all of the fights beyond just “bad guy evil, kill him”.

In particular the resurrection of Nue, or Abe no Seimei was well pulled off here, as a giant fetus floating in the sky. On top of that, there is the irony of Hagoromo Gitsune probably not being the one who killed Nura’s father, but it was some sort of doing from her human part. Beyond that there are a lot of different parties involved that all have some sort of agenda. That’s what makes this finale work. In the first season everyone pretty much melted together. Nobody stood apart.

And on top of that the execution also was a lot less solid back then. Again Studio Deen aren’t the best animators, and one of the hardest things to animate is a battle between small armies. With clever camera work and arc though, a lot of movement was created here. Thumbs up.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 25 November 2011 with categories: Nurarihyon no Mago




Oh heck, Persona is dropped. I know that everyone keeps going on about being faithful and all, but this should not be taken to the extreme, where a show is trying to be so faithful and sacrifices being enjoyable and interesting for it in the process.

The next question was though: what series should I replace this with? Kimi to Boku? Nah, that series is 50% good drama and 50% pure annoyance. Bakuman? No, that one has turned into a cheesy soap opera lately. Squid Girl? Again no, because it’s clear that it has run out of jokes. Guilty Crown? Hell no, because of how abysmal the male lead is. That only left two other options, but after watching this episode I figured to choose this one above Horizon.

Hell, Nurarihyon no Mago is a very flawed series. Its pacing is way too damn slow, but now that it has finally gotten to the point where everything’s coming together, I might as well follow it till the end. I mean, it’s about bloody time.

And don’t get me wrong, the new director for the second season fits this series much, much better. Junji Nishimura needs to be put on original series. That’s where this guy really shines. The new guy meanwhile has done a really good job on directing this thing, but with the source material being like it is, there is very little you can do about it. This is the problem with just about any shounen jump series: they all take bloody ages to get to where they want to be. Who the hell found it a good idea to include two whole training arcs in the same arc? These two arcs were by far the biggest flaw of this second season. They completely broke up the flow and took bloody ages to actually finish.

However, now that that’s all done, we can finally get to what we’ve been looking forward to for nearly five months now: Nura and his army taking on Hagoromo Gitsune and her army. And now that we finally got to this point, this episode did deliver here. This episode in particular had some great youkai design, and actually moved quickly, as what you’d expect from an all out war.

The atmosphere also really worked here, plus the art direction has improved massively in this new season. I mean, this series had Mariko Oka (the character designer of Jigoku Shoujo and Ghost Hound), and yet the first season made the character designs all look bland. This season is different: Mariko Oka took the greatly diverse designs from the manga, turned all of them into very vastly different anime character designs, and finally the animators with their crispness managed to show how much care went into all of these designs.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

Posted on 27 December 2010 with categories: Nurarihyon no Mago



I didn’t know that there was supposed to be a 26th episode of Nurarihyon no Mago, but it turns out to be a recap. A nicely cut recap that actually shows the core of the past arc, but a recap nonetheless. There was no new content and no hook for the second season.

Whether I’m going to blog the second season depends entirely on the season it airs in: if there aren’t many great series I’ll cover it, if there are however many awesome series then I’m going to prioritize those. I just have one major request for the creators: just pick what you want to focus on. Either go for a completely original arc, or just faithfully adapt this thing. You can’t do both at the same time.

Oh, and small Rikuo with an adult voice… it’s still creepy after watching it a second time.
Rating: – (Disappointing)

Posted on 21 December 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews, Nurarihyon no Mago




You know these really long shounen fighting series, of which people say “yeah, it starts bland but after 30 or so episodes it gets really good”. That’s this show; at least according to the many people who have read the Nurarihyon no Mago manga. And yes, it has only 25 episodes.

Nurarihyon no Mago does have a fairly intriguing premise, chockful of the Japanese Shinto culture. It’s pretty solid in the way that it builds up its main characters, side characters, setting and premise. A lot of episodes of this series go into background, fleshing out the different characters, so much even that building up is pretty much the only thing it does. In order to see it pay off, we’re going to have to wait for the second season and because of that I can’t really recommend this season standalone because 25 episodes is a long time to sit through.

The different story arcs throughout this series aren’t bad; they’re just unremarkable. The main problem is that Rikuo (the main character)’s grown up form is just too powerful, taking away the tension of all of the fights he’s in. It establishes a lot of character background, but never really uses it, and that’s my main problem with this series: there is hardly anything that keeps your attention. The biggest culprit is the second half of this series: a lot of build-up there goes into Rikuo’s classmates, who in the end turn out to have no purpose whatsoever in the main story of that arc, leaving the really imporant characters of that arc way too underdeveloped.

Compare that to Letter Bee’s first season: that too went on for really long, yet at least that one delivered some great standalone stories, and kept viewers on a hook with a terrific cliff-hanger towards its second season. Nurarihyon no Mago has none of that. If I hadn’t heard the praises that the manga readers give to the chapters that follow the point where the series ends, I might even have dropped this show.

Storytelling: 6/10 – It’s an entire series of build-up. That’s not good storytelling!
Characters: 8/10 – A solid cast with likable characters. Nothing special, though.
Production-Values: 8/10 – Great character and youkai designs, animation that’s nothing special.
Setting: 8/10 – Again, an interesting background for the second series to work with. It will, right?

Suggestions:
Letter Bee
The Law of Ueki
Hikaru no Go

Posted on with categories: Nurarihyon no Mago



Meh, this ending was bland. Nothing really caught my attention, it left absolutely no hook for the second season, and the conclusion itself was lacking. Rikuo just battles and uses his awesome powers to easily win. At the end, he gets stopped by Tamazuki’s father who begs him to forgive his son. Rikuo smiles and agrees. The rest of the episode completely ignores all of the youkai that got killed in the process. Very smooth there. At the end of this episode, Yura actually sees Youkai at Rikuo’s mansion, but doesn’t react in the slightest. Overall, this first season is going to leave a pretty bad taste for me.

In the end, this really was the wrong director on the wrong series. Junji Nishimura needs original series: that’s where he’s brilliant. He used his liberties nicely on True Tears, but he restricted himself too much on Nurarihyon way too much. He should have either picked an original story or following the manga, because trying to go for both turned out to be fatal here. Instead, Studio Deen should have gone for people like Hiroshi Watanabe, Toshifumi Kawase, Toshiyuki Kato (though he seems to have gone to David Production in the meantime) or Sayama Kiyoko, who are great at adapting things (sure, things may have instead gotten cut here and there, but it would have been better than dragging on for way too long like this series did).

At the start of this show, I really praised it, but at the end, my opinion of it really has dropped. It’s pretty much an entire season with nothing but build-up that it never really uses. That’s my big problem with these long shounen series: they may have good parts, but they also have these seemingly endless strings of unremarkable episodes. And I mean, the target audience for these kinds of series is teenaged boys. How do these kids have the patience to sit through that?

At this point, that second season really needs to prove that these past 25 episodes have been worth it. At this point though, I’m pretty pissed at this series.
Rating: — (Lacking)

Posted on 14 December 2010 with categories: Nurarihyon no Mago



As the penultimate episode, this episode convinced me: next week is going to be a really bad point for this series to end. Out of all of the reviews that I’m going to write this month, Nurarihyon no Mago’s will likely be the most difficult one, because while it isn’t exactly a bad series, I also see no way to recommend it in this state. I didn’t really get anything out of these past 24 episodes.

The anime creators really made some crucial mistakes here. The extra time for Rikuo’s classmates was actually very good at first sight. They took what could have been the single most annoying characters of the series, fleshed them out and made them enjoyable. The main problem however is that this series completely failed in terms of building up.

This series spends a lot of time focusing on all kinds of different backstories, creating characters, most notably Gyuki and Rikuo and his classmates. The rest of the cast however is completely ignored, not fleshed out at all and therefore feels as flat as a pancake, not to mention that this finale has ignored just about all of the fleshed out ones. Tamazuki is a horrible villain: we know his backstory, but what do we know about him as a person? He’s evil and wants power; that’s all. We know a lot about small Rikuo now, but how much exactly have we gotten to know big Rikuo? This guy still is this guy who just comes and kills evil youkai. The rest of the cast is the same: beyond their basic personalities, they’re all just the same static people over and over again.

Now, as for this episode: it was a bit of a weird point to suddenly reveal that Rikuo’s classmates have once before been saved the child version of large Rikuo (who sounded really strange with the same voice actor, by the way), but my main issue here lied with the way it tried to wrap up everything, because it exactly illustrates how it completely failed at building up something. In the end, Tamazuki does what most generic villains do and kills off all of his subordinates in order to gain power. The only thing that Rikuo and the other youkai manage to retort this with is that you can’t control people with fear, but with respect. In the end, it’s all come down to these cheesy and shallow morals, after 24 episodes of airtime. I really expected better from this. Both from the anime creators and from the original story. I mean, someone tell me that the manga was more than just “let’s all beat the stereotypically evil Tamazuki here”.
Rating: – (Disappointing)

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AidanAK47
So that's one. Can't say I remember seeing Finland elsewhere besides that show where all the countries are turned into anime characters.
AidanAK47
Luvia Edelfelt is from Finland?! Well damn you learn something new every day.
AidanAK47
And now I find a screenshot of them saying Miyu is from Finland. Which is weird because nothing of the sort was mentioned in the manga.
AidanAK47
Most I seen was anime characters saying Norway which was generally used as a means of saying NO WAY.
AidanAK47
@Anon48363, its sad that when I see a comment like this my first reaction is suspecting its a Bot. Thanks though.
@Masky, nope. No they didn't. I think this may be in your head.
Anonymous48363
Been enjoying the site for 7-8 years, if not longer. Thank you for your efforts in keeping the editorial line intact wrt reviews and happy to discover new content in the process. Keep up the good work!
Masky
Anyway, speaks of your "high taste" I guess. Finland gets brought up in some of otaku fanservice material for some bizarre reason. I'm weirded out by that since Finland is most obscure backwater place I've seen mentioned most out of other obscure countries xD
Masky
Of course it is possible I'm remembering wrong too(and did read wrong) and they did mention it only once :P
Masky
How funny you say that and then mention that weird magical girl spinoff right after wards xD The part where they introduce Miyu to rest of class has teacher saying she is transfer student from Finland, unless I read subtitles wrong
AidanAK47
Gonna wait on the Prisma Illya episode post. Figure I cover two episodes in one considering the slow pace isn't giving me much to work with.
Got to say I thought this would give me much more to talk about.
AidanAK47
I don't remember Finland ever being brought up in anime. Or video games. Or anything for that matter.
Speaking of the preview I have at least checked the source material. Just need to buckle down and start writing it.
Masky
@Bam: I know right? :D
Bam
I agree with K-off regarding keep the business end of stuff off the shoutbox- I just have no means of communicating with all of ya'll. We can Skype, but I suggest Google hangouts for conferencing. That way we may be able to record special podcasts, and now's probably a good time to get this to the next level.
Bam
I also volunteer to help with the workload for the season preview. I would be down to cover two series, but they have to appeal to me, cause there's no way I can be fair and PG-13 with the reviews of aweful shows.
Bam
@Masky: "Generalized statements are in general rather annoying". Hehe, that awefully sounds woefully like a generalized statement to me m8.
Bam
First Dark Souls III DLC titled Ashes of Ariandel just confirmed for an Oct 25th release. Thankfully this time, all regions and platforms are getting the expnasion on the same day. Here is a reveal trailer to launch the Hype Zeppelin:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iu1NCPMC7D0
Bam
Friend: please send me, or post, the finished banner once you have it complete. I would like to take a gander. Thank you.
Masky
...Espicially since characters supposedly from there rarely have names that sound Finnish.
Masky
So anyhoo, so why is Finland one of countries that tends to get name dropped a lot in anime/manga/japanese video games? As Finnish person that weirds me out
K-Off
@Friend Damn, kind of surprised to see how abstract some of those concept art are for Mulan. But generalizations are just easier to make if all they care about is validation.
Masky
Generalized statements are in general rather annoying, but everyone loves to make them anyway for some reason :D
Friend
I'm nearing completion with our banner, in terms of work-hours Id say 3 hours? But in real life that equates to about 4 days because of stuff.
Friend
Something that annoys me: when a fellow artist makes a generalized statement about the industry by saying something silly like "japanese animated films have more creative input involved." Uggh Google "Alex Nino Mulan Concept" and tell me if you still think that. Sorry about that X/
SuperMario
And it might sound weird to you guys, especially majority of you are in one of the hottest days of summer, but I'm gonna head off to snow mountain for skiing this coming weekend. So expect the weekly posts will be a bit later than usual.
SuperMario
I don't know if that guy @Bond is still lurking around here, but I'm still interested In doing that thing with him
SuperMario
@Aidan: imho, those numbers don't really mean if we have nothing to compare them to. I'll say the ratio between original/ all anime for particular seasons would tell us a lot better
AidanAK47
But it does counter the point of "We don't get enough original anime anymore" which in itself was a pretty silly statement.
AidanAK47
Of course just because they are original doesn't automatically qualify them as good.
AidanAK47
@Anon44887, that logic would apply if it was an exception. 9 original shows last season, 14 original shows this season. 20 in the next. Are they three seasons all an exception?
Anonymous44887
@AidanAK47: An exception that proves the rule
Vonter
Just to ask does any of the shows being reviewed have a great soundtrack. Just asking for asking.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: I recall he posted under the name Bold/bond, the same poster who made the chart.
AidanAK47
Who was it again bemoaning that we don't get enough original(Not adaption) anime anymore? Cause there are 20 original shows next season. Great for anime but hard for me cause what am I gonna write in the preview?
AidanAK47
I am a bit too stubborn to burnout.
@afgm, I didn't change a thing.
Anonymous38539
I hope AidanAK47 would not suffer an Anime Burnout. I love this site and it pains to think that one day, no one will be writing the seasonal previews and yearly summary.
SuperMario
@Aidan: you have 91 days's episode as 9 instead of 7
AidanAK47
Bloody hell, even the spambots are referencing Pokemon Go now.
K-Off
For future reference, let's direct admin dialogue to email, apart from direct feedback.
@Mario We're working on allowing users to set up accounts.
SuperMario
And the constant anonymous names just keep bugging me. Can we make it back to the old shoutbox, where you have to put down your name in order to write message?
SuperMario
I think it's one thing leads to another. he's getting too burnout that he doesn't know what to write anymore.
AidanAK47
@Anon36049, pretty much what he said. Though it seems to be a combination of anime burnout and writers block.
Anonymous36271
He suffered from anime burnout and is getting on with real life.
Anonymous36049
Hi guys I havent been around for a long time. Does anyone know what happened to psgels? I see that the new posts are not his.
AidanAK47
Disgaea 2 coming to steam. Sweet.
Gotta finish Disgaea 1 and hope they don't screw up the port on release day again.
AidanAK47
Illuminati are everywhere, regardless of wherther it's anime or not. Sword Art Online was the work of the illuminati. All in the name of the gaint magic eyeball triange god do they rule the landscape of entertainment medium.
Also Magic Eyeball-kun also argees that Rem is best girl. And none shall dare denounce that claim.
SuperMario
@Anony35181: never thought they're that much interested in anime thou
Anonymous35181
@supermario, illuminati confirmed
SuperMario
Is it just me or couple of messages from the shoutbox just gone missing?
Topgavin
Haven't been watching it myself, but apparently in Taboo Tattoo, that large-chested high school girl died while running *onto a live battlefield* to check on her boyfriend with a shirt that said "flag". 10/10
K-Off
@afgm Sent you a message.
@Friend Looks good, I'd be interested in seeing multiple witches as well.
Anonymous32745
Chemotherapy is a cause of cancer rather than a cure.
Anonymous32745
If you know someone dying of cancer, immediately inform them that allopathic medicine will kill them and turn them to natural remedies which often work.
Anonymous32745
"Medicine and science are powerfully institutionalized, but no institution or profession has existed for the purpose of encouraging people to act reasonably." - Ray Peat
afgm
.
afgm
@Friend: yeah it's a problem
@Koff: I emailed you a while back. did you get it?
Fri3nd
Huh, I can't use my username.
@Bam You're right, I'll work on it.
Bam
@K-off: It's moments like these that really remind you of mortality. People pull thru tho. medical science has come far in that field; but definitely not far enough.
Bam
@Friend: It's looks pretty good. I like Mario's suggestion of a series of witches, but a solitary one is more in-tune with the current banner. I would say however that there is too much dark in the negative space to the right. Could be just me tho.
Bam
@Kaiser: a series of consecutive 'yes'. I was really into Laloux, but FP is the one I liked the most. I've been watching Mr. Robot since season 1, and it's well worth your time. Not really all that cyberpunkish tho; mostly just cyber. And anybody who hasn't read Gibson's masterpiece is a fool of a Took.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Bam: Have you been looking into that Mr Robot series? I heard its meant to be some kind of cyber thriller, it could be our thing. Also have you read Neuromancer?
Kaiser Eoghan
And I suppose that brings me to that stranger things show then, I love horror so I guess that caught my eye, but apparently its a family/kids thing =< don't know whether to bother.
Kaiser Eoghan
I still say it takes me that extra bit of convincing to watch a childrens animated film.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Friend: The banner is in good hands I see.
AidanAK47
Well Coraline wasn't written by Laika. It was written by Neil Gaiman. Laika just adapted it. Still I would like to check out Kubo to see what all the hype is about.
SuperMario
@anony29442: I will watch Kubo this coming week so I will comment on the movie then. But I'm not that surprise if Kubo has a weak writing. Laika never really great at story development: I mean Coraline is exellent, ParaNorman is just okay and Boxstrolls writing is just so underdeveloped and full of plotholes
SuperMario
@friend: wow. It looks awesome. But why only one witch? ^^
Friend
Hey everyone! Just an update on our new banner, here's my WIP up to now: [link src="https://i.imgur.com/0QSv6IK.png
I'm"] trying a witch as a tribute to one of psgel's favorite anime maho shojotai. Feedback is welcome, I have a lot left to do. A 5:1 aspect ratio is the weirdest dimension I've ever painted in
Anonymous29442
I just saw Kubo and the 2 strings and im really shocked at all the praise its receiving. People calling it an instant masterpiece on looks alone but not enough are talking about how underdeveloped the characters and story were. It felt as if they made the whole thing up as they went along to the point where I couldnt suspend my disbelief any longer and got irritated.
Anonymous29415
qualidea code's characters havent become better in terms of how they are written; only that they have been fleshed out in the most generic and trivial of ways as to sympathize with them; and sure, they have become some what likeable in the same way you'd like a person who you heard nothing but kind things about but that does not save the characters from being boring. QC is still a bad show
AidanAK47
@Anon27511, even if the animation was kept consistent the story still can't really escape the done to death aspect of it's story. I agree that the writing has gotten better but despite that the show just feels...meh.
Anonymous27511
Fucking Qualidea Code, as the story and characters become more interesting, the animation and drawing proportionately decreases. Sad they simply do not have the budget to pull off what seems like a potentially very good story
K-Off
@Mike I'm sure you already heard but for some reason I didn't keep up to date. I thought it was strange that releases stopped in March after chapter 68,.
K-Off
Just learned that the writer of my favorite webtoon is battling terminal cancer, but despite it she hopes to finish it someday. God damn I would've never expected this.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Once spilled hot microwaved food over my hand by mistake, hurt for a day.
Kaiser Eoghan
*remaining
Kaiser Eoghan
@Bam: The story and ideas however were better in gandahar I felt. Time masters while good was a bit stop and start in its pace and animation.
I’m definitely interested in Laloux’s other, short animations and Mobius’ comic book work.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Bam: I watched Rene Laloux's remain animated films, Gandahar and time masters, I enjoyed both but not as much as Fantastic planet. I remember we talked about fantastic planet two years ago. Did you see the other two I mentioned. I liked the big moments and the ending to time masters, especially those angel things.
Anonymous27024
Ok. I beat Federation Force. I think the main positive is that the levels were playable despite the lack of voice chat. The bosses took a lot of damage and the beginning and end are relevant to the Prime continuity.
SuperMario
@K-Off: I did it once just like you did, and once when I put a metal bowl into a microwave. So yeah, boys will always be boys.
Bam
I tried my best not to half-ass either of them tho. Any oddity you guys see just write it off as mental exhaustion.
Bam
Okay, I'm officially beat. These two reviews should be considered companion pieces, as some material from one flew into the other. Thank god that episode 08 was not a heavy one, or I'd be completely depleted.
K-Off
Shit, I'm a damn idiot at baking, slightly burnt my hand a minute ago grabbing a hot tray with a wet towl. Why do I even try.
K-Off
@afgm Alright, send me a message at fightthepowwa@gmail.com and we'll work it out.
Bam
*cinematography
Bam
@K-off: I second that, as although the Poirot series has very well-done choreography, casting and music, there is still a little more of that unquantifiable magic sprinkled on the Granada series. But keep watching and I'll guarantee that Suchet will become the quintessential Poirot in your mind as well.
K-Off
I said that while I liked the performance and the direction, I didn't think that it did for Poirot what Granada did for Holmes.
K-Off
@Bam Yeah it is, and generally when I camp I like to stay for 1-2 weeks, places like Niagara or Yellowstone I can pretty much see everything I want to see in a few days so I don't find much value going to those places. The Adirons on the other hand is diverse as hell.
Bam
@K-off: I'm not sure if you mentioned it while I was gone: but did you get to watch any of the Poirot series with David Suchet? And if so, what are your thoughts?
Bam
I generally go to either the Muir Woods north of SF, or the forests around Big Sur. It doesn't take much to please me really.
Bam
@K-ff: is that by Lake Champlain? Cuz I've been there once and loved it.
Bam
@K-off: I thought of a combined post, but my OCD wouldn't allow a skip in the episodic order of the reviews.
K-Off
Usually when you go camping in Yellowstone or Yosemite the tourist industry kills those places, like I'd be on a rowboat and see cars, cabins, and people from a long ways offshore. The Adirondacks are nice because their building codes mandate construction to be hidden behind trees.
K-Off
@Bam My favorite camping spot is the Adirondacks in upstate NY, I went there probably 4-7 times and never get tired of the place. No, I don't have any posts for now, but for future reference consider combining episodic reviews when you get behind. I.E. Episode 6-8 Review
Bam
Also there's a reader in the comment section of Berserk 07 who wants to know if we have a notification system. I vaguely remember a widget that links the site to a FaceBook page. If anybody knows how that works, or if it's still functional, please shed some light on the matter for him/her. Thx.
Bam
@Aidan @K-off @Mario either one of y'all has any post near completion? I'm almost done with Berserk 08 and as previously mentioned, really prefer not to put two reviews up back to back. I think the length of them is already a hassle for some to get thru, let alone two right after eachother. I think it hurts the viewership, but if nothing's on hand then I'll guess I'll just finish up and post mine.
Bam
@Kaiser: I was actually camping near a mountain, but aren't all mountains somewhat holy? That could be my bias tho, since I was raised on the Alborz mountain range, and for me there is something therapeutic about the mountain air.
Kaiser Eoghan
Yes! Looks like the shoutbox is fixed and not deleting posts after 24 hours anymore!
Kaiser Eoghan
lol Or you could live in the shitty suburb where I do and spend your time just waiting for when your internet connection randomly cuts out twice a month or as it has the past few days two-three times a day.
Kaiser Eoghan
Basically bam went up the Holy mountain .
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: ....guy I know who loves war films and I've ended up inadvertedly/un-intentionally gotten him to buy some fucked up Polish horror film that just happens to be set in WW2. lol he's going to be pretty freaked out when he watches it.
Bam
Everything been cool here? Hehe ... looks like I conveniently missed all the hard parts.
Bam
@Mario: thx m8. I wish I could just make it down to Rio on a whim, but then again, I took a much-needed vacation, so I ain't complaining.
SuperMario
Welcome back Bam, I was already convinced that you went to Rio for screwing around. Lol
Bam
Also I apologize for the absence. I was gone somewhere without reliable internet access, and looking back I should've gave a notification.
Either way, I'm back now, and will be jumping on getting those Berserk reviews out as soon as possible.
Bam
Man looky here with the renovations; I like it.
SuperMario
@Vyse: wow. So how was the sites then back from 2005?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: and what is that sh!te you're talking about?
VyseLegendaire
<— fixed
VyseLegendaire
<— me
VyseLegendaire
Ive been a reader since 2005
Kaiser Eoghan
Haha, this'll be fun lol
Kaiser Eoghan
.....that feeling when you keep going on about a show or film but fail to give all the details...and someone goes out and buys it not knowing the full extent of the mad shit their in for...s--t lol
Anonymous24840
any reader from 2005 here....
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: This guy seems interesting: https://letterboxd.com/director/tsai-ming-liang/
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Hmm, not familiar with him.
I really really loved in the mood for love, alot, it emotionally effected me. I even watched it three times.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I couldn't seem to enjoy any of Zimou yangs films apart from Hero, which had some pretty creative fight scenes. I've seen the story of Ricky and some of John-woos films but they were more just silly entertaining exploitation films.
SuperMario
Don't know if you know the Vietnamese-French Tran Anh Hung. His works are stunning too. If you want to check out East-Asian cinema don't forget to check him out.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Yeah, but Park Chan Wood changed the ending, so the author insisted that the Handmaiden is more "inspired" than "based". The third chapter is the weakest part for me
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Of interest, The handmaiden was based on some British book/tv show.
Kaiser Eoghan
I need to completely re-evaluate/get into more Chinese cinema.
Kaiser Eoghan
Doesn't look like I've seen anything by Hong-sang-so.
My favourite Korean actor is song-kang-ho.
Kaiser Eoghan
Theres an anime convention over here in Dublin in three months. Although I haven't been to one in years.
SuperMario
I'm heading to anime convention today. Normally I don't really care about those conventions but I figure I'd come this year to see the taste of it. The only hassle is it's 3-hour drive, which gonna be a pain when I drive back after a long day being there.
SuperMario
Bong Joon-ho, on the other hand,is incredible at writing. His scripts are often layered, sharp and best of all fuses many tones/ genres into one coherent whole. The best thing about this Korean New Wave directors is they all have very distinctive voices. But my favorite director isn't the ones that you list. That would be Hong Sang Soo. I just love his simplicity style so much.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Park Chan Wood is a master of visual. Whenever I come to his movies I expected to be blown-away by his visual. He can write compelling characters (he loves his characters) as well but his screenplays in general are weak. You can watch his lesser effort "I'm a Cyborg, but That's Okay" and see many things that made him good/bad. That's the movie I feel he made without the care of the critic
afgm
.
afgm
@koff: Yeah I can help. But midterms/finals are coming up so I can't dedicate to much time.
Kaiser Eoghan
I always felt Bong-jong and Chang-dong , kim-di-duk and Kim-jee-woon were better than Park-chan-wook. Oldboy did have that one hell of an ending, so did lady vengeance but I feel that those are the bits people tend to remember and the rest was good but not great.
Topgavin
For anyone that doesn't regularly browse /r/anime, Godzilla is apparently getting an anime adaption by Polygon Pictures with Urobuchi involved. Should be good.
K-Off
Well, I climbed to rank 52 in Overwatch with Tracer alone. Looking forward to season 2 already, but I do wish Blizzard had somehow implemented a single-player storyline since the lore in Blizzard titles is always so vast. Kind of surprised they didn't make one with Overwatch.
K-Off
@Kaiser Watch Train to Busan if you can. Me neither, I can't dig too deep into Korean films due to the language barrier. Sure would be convenient to have Vincent recommending films again.
K-Off
@afgm Hey, are you still interested in helping out with the site? At this point I'm looking over the site's code & doing some rewriting - if you think you can help, let me know.
K-Off
@Mario I hadn't watched Old Boy for 6 years when I got to I Saw the Devil and it was out of mind for me, so you may be right.
SuperMario
@K-Off: maybe it was just me but I was underwhelmed by I Saw the Devil. The point it trying to match was similar to OldBoy, and Oldboy's execution was way better (OldBoy's one of my favorite movie). Yes, the soundtracks of OldBoy, Lady Vengeance are exceptional. I still listen to The Last Waltz after all those years...
K-Off
The soundtrack in a lot of these Korean films are top notch as well, Lady Vengeance and I Saw the Devil in particular.
K-Off
@Mario Speaking of which, Korean psychological thrillers are hands down some of the best in the last 10-20 years. I Saw the Devil, Lady Vengeance, Old Boy, list goes on.
SuperMario
@Aidan: It just comes to me that we're already half way of this season... Time sure flies
SuperMario
@Kaiser: so please finish up Inside Mari. The last chapter had been out. I need someone to talk about that goddamn manga anw
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I always consider the Korean New Wave started back in 2000, and really peaked in 2003 (OldBoy, Memories of Murders, Spring Summer..., A Tale of 2 Sisters). Before 2000? The only director I can think of was Im Kwon-Taek
AidanAK47
About nearly finished Fata Morgana but I might have to finish doom first because that thing is eating a huge chunk of my SSD drive.
AidanAK47
Back up to date...at least for now. I have to go to a wedding so It's likely I will fall behind again. Got to admit that I haven't had much of an opinion on the latest episodes. Might be just mentally drained personally.
SuperMario
@K-off: I totally agree with you. 28 Days Later is a gem. Though I'm not really into zombie genre as a whole, I'm more into psychological stuffs more.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Reminding me I need to catch up on boku mari no naka.
Kaiser Eoghan
Although the trailer for train to busan does catch my interest.
Kaiser Eoghan
I've gotten more than enough out of Korean films, I can enjoy them but I probably don't sing the same high praises for them as most bar some exceptions.
Seeing Lee-chang-dongs stuff I'm actually kind of interested in finding some more low key korean films.
Kaiser Eoghan
Very likely a view shared by my indie loving friend and I, but Battery and Wyrmwood were jokey takes on the zombie genre I thought were enjoyable.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Likely my preference for British comedy that makes me laugh more at Shaun of the dead more. Although Hot fuzz is the better Simon Pegg film in my opinion.
In terms of Korean films, I've been wondering, what are the pre-90s ones like. Lee-chang-dong started the Korean new wave in 1997.
K-Off
I'm still waiting for a good horror-zombie film, nothing has met my expectations after 28 Days Later (and techinically REC), which admittedly is a high bar.
K-Off
@Mario I am watching Seoul Station next week, that was just me recapping TtB after I watched it a few days ago. It's definitely more of a thriller, it has good "wtf" moments but nothing I'd call horror.
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