Posted on 20 December 2008 with categories: Anime Reviews, Telepathy Shoujo Ran


The latest NHK-series: Telepathy Shoujo Ran, a charming mystery shoujo series about the titular character who is blessed with the gift of telepathy, among others. With Yoshiiro Ike’s soundtrack, it features an adaptation of a set of children’s novels; it had the potential to be either a fun little series or a gigantic flop. Thankfully it became the former.

However, you do need to realize that you do not want to watch this series because of its mystery part. The different stories that are presented throughout the series aren’t exactly bad, but they don’t stand out either. They’re often cheesy, involve Ran&co mostly by coincidences or suffer from overmoralistic confession speeches. They’re just… there; in order to support what really makes this series stand out.

What really made me return to this series for every single week is the cast of characters, and then especially the banter that occurs between them. The four lead characters form an excellent team that’s always fun to watch. While this series is not strictly a comedy, there were enough hilarious moments between them, and this remains through the entire length of the series. Hardly any attempt at a joke falls flat. Overall, the point where this series excels at is in fleshing out its characters. Even when there’s no comedy, the creators and the lead characters manage to keep everything going along smoothly to prevent the viewer from getting bored.

The graphics in this series are also pretty decent. Even though there’s lots of epilepsy-inducing CG, characters move smooth and their facial expressions show a very wide range of subtle emotions. It makes use of very bright and varied colours, which makes for a very aesthetically pleasing series. Ike Yoshihiro’s soundtrack also brings this series to life, even though it may not be among his best works.

Overall, expect anything from the story here and you will be disappointed, but nevertheless this series managed to achieve what it set out to do: despite the storylines that usually fail to capture, it’s a continuously fun series from beginning to end. Ran, Rui, Rin and Midori are a set of wonderful characters, with especially wonderful banter between them.

Storytelling: 7/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 8/10
Posted on with categories: Telepathy Shoujo Ran



Short Synopsis: Ran and Midori use the power of love to get rid of the fox deity (hey, what else did you expect? An “Everyone dies”-ending?)
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7/10 (Enjoyable)
Ah crap. Of course, I should have noticed. That’s one major headdesk moment. Remember the episode where Midori met the old lady who was abandoned by her grandchild who turned out to have powers? Yeah. That child turned out to be the evil teacher. Duh.

In any case, it does turn out that the creators decided to safe the story with the cheesiest ending for last. Ran literally managed to win with the power of friendship, turning everyone from animals back into humans. This episode definitely was one of the cheesiest of the series yet, so I’m not going to talk about the storyline.

What I do want to praise in this episode are the visuals. The animation wasn’t exceptional, but nonetheless this was one pretty episode with lots of subtle touches and nice ideas. That floated-city-scenery for example: it was really nice to look at, with an excellent use of CG for the water. The growing tree also looked really nicely.

And I’m also really impressed that the creators managed to get away with actual blood on an NHK-series, even though a bite by a real army of tigers is going to be a bit more severe than just a simple cut. What I especially liked is that the blood here actually looks like blood. I swear, there are just too many anime that stuff their characters with galleons of ketchup.

Overall, I really don’t often blog fun shoujo series like this one. It’s not because I hate the genre, but with these kinds of series it’s very hard to guess whether or not they can remain fresh for their entire airtime (something which Shugo Chara showed me the hard way). With Telepathy Shoujo Ran, I decided to give it a whirl, though. What especially attracted me in the beginning was the colourful characters, and the amount of attention that was put in the slice of life scenes. Always good to flesh out your characters, and indeed: the characters never turned boring. Okay, so the stories for the different episodes were just too cheesy for their own good, the real fun of this series comes from the excellent chemistry between Ran and Midori. For that I’m glad to have watched and blogged this series.

Posted on 19 December 2008 with categories: Telepathy Shoujo Ran



Short Synopsis: All over town, people are turning into animals.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10 (Good)
Ah, of course. Finally we understand what was up with the dog and the lighter in the very first episode: it foreshadowed the very final arc. Hehe, nice touch.

In any case, in the final arc of the series, the themes suddenly become environmental. As it turns out the whole arc was about a fox deity who is fed up with humankind ruining the world. It really fits as a children’s series, since children of Ran’s age are often interested in protecting the environment (albeit a bit too moralistic). This arc really doesn’t try to be anything deep: the whole backstory really is as simple as a deity who has gotten angry at humans for screwing up earth so much, period. The interesting things, as usual, were the things that happened around it.

Right now, I’m really curious whether the creators are going to be able to end this series correctly, especially because the inclusion of the evil teacher felt really forced here. I mean, what the heck was her point of appearing, rather than just confirming what the fox said? How did she know about the animals-thing in the first place? (Telepathy, okay, but that doesn’t explain why she found it a good idea to enter the lion’s den…)

Right now, it’s pretty obvious that everything is going to have a happy end: the animals are going to be turned back into humans, the fox deity will see the errors of her ways and the teacher will also become one of the good guys; it’s even more predictable than your average ending. What the next episode needs to do is provide lots of banter. Avoid the straightforward, and make the episode fun to watch despite the predictability. I know that this series can do it, but it all depends whether or not the creators will write themselves into a corner, trying to achieve the “perfect ending”.

Posted on 6 December 2008 with categories: Telepathy Shoujo Ran



Short Synopsis: Animals start acting strangely in Ran’s hometown.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10 (Good)
Well, it’s finally time for this series’ finale, and as it turns out I was wrong about the amount of novel volumes: there are just eight of them, not nine. The final arc, if I’m not mistaken, comes from the third or fourth volume, which proves that the creators really grabbed themselves the opportunity to select the most appropriate story for the series’ finale.

And I must say that up till now, they’ve made a pretty good choice. After all, they could just as well have gotten with the… Snake Island Arc… Yeah, that would have been exciting. Anyway, this episode definitely served its purpose as introduction. As usual with the introduction-episodes to these arcs, nothing much exciting happened, and yet this episode in particular had something ominous: you know something really bad is about to happen, and this episode did a great job of building up that feeling. Especially those crows crashing into the window were… strange to say the least. And yeah, so what if it’s nowhere explained why this evil spirit has chosen this time and space to re-awaken. This series was never famous for its brilliant introductions. ^^;

And the end of the series had another advantage: the series was planned well, and so there’s lots of nice budget left for some solid animation for that final arc. Especially the scene following the pillow thrown at Rui showed that the animators had lots of fun animating it. This episode also brought Ran’s class to life a bit by its small attention to the new teacher and one of the random classmates. So overall I’m happy.

Please, let this series end with a good climax, instead of a downer.

Posted on 29 November 2008 with categories: Telepathy Shoujo Ran



Short Synopsis: Ran gets called by a wooden statue who turns out to contain the spirit of an ancient Japanese dude.
Highlights: What was up with these strange fantasies of Midori?
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7/10 (Enjoyable)
Well, so this was one of the more nonsensical stories of this series. From out of nowhere, Ran gets called in the library by a strange statue. This turns out to be the spirit of a guy who once left his war struck country in order to search for a princess fit to rule his country. The episode eventually ends with the past coming alive again, and the guy saving everyone by labelling Ran as said princess. So, yeah…

Still, the banter was as awesome as ever, so I’m not the one to complain here. For some reason, Midori’s sudden mood fluctuations whenever Rin gets mentioned remain hilarious. It was also nice to see some breaking of the fourth wall, when the spirit contacted Ran, and Midori went “oh, here we go again”.

It’s interesting how the creators decided to end the series with short stories, instead of two-episode arcs. I originally thought that the final four episodes of this series would be spent on the final two novel volumes, but it actually looks like the creators are going for an anime-original ending. Either that, or the series will end with a bunch of forest animals rampaging…

Posted on 22 November 2008 with categories: Telepathy Shoujo Ran



Short Synopsis: Ran&co go skiing during their holidays.
Highlights: Most natural storytelling of the entire series.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,0/10 (Excellent)
It’s episodes like this that really make me ask the following question:

Why the heck didn’t the creators just ditch the original novels and went with their own direction? Seriously.

And don’t get me wrong, the novels are by no means not enjoyable, and admittedly they remain flawed. There’s simply no continuity or character development whatsoever; the novels were animated in a random order, and you wouldn’t suspect the difference unless you knew. The creators of the anime have a vision, though. They somehow made the lacking novel stories fun to watch until the end, and they seized every chance at filler to include some development so that at least Midori comes out as a complex character. On top of that, the fact remains that the banter between the characters is consistently at its best during the filler episodes. These guys know how to make an anime dammit!

This is why I don’t mind it at all when an anime simply ditches the story of its original source material and goes into a different direction. It only becomes a bad thing when the anime creators clearly aren’t up to the task (I’m looking at you, Romeo and Juliet), but that would have been the same if they decided to follow the original source material (I’m looking at you, Hatenkou Yuugi). What matters is whether or not the creators have a vision. Himitsu ~ The Revelation’s original stories were very capable ones for example, and the anime creators had enough inspiration for the manga’s unique premise, so they just decided to go with their own look at the story, resulting in two different views at the same subject in anime- and manga-form.

In any case, with this episode, the filler episodes for this series have unfortunately come to an end, since there are two novels left to be animated. What I hope is that the anime creators chose the order of the stories so, that the best ones would be saved for last, so that the series at least isn’t going to end with a bad taste.

About this episode, I really liked that this has been the episode that felt the most natural of all of the cases so far. Ran and the others don’t conveniently happen to run into a case. There was just one coincidence that felt a bit weird, but apart from that everything made sense: Ran and Midori actually went to the resort, searching for a local legend about a snow woman. The legend turns out to be wrong, it was the ghost of a fox that took the form of a little girl. The fox was attached to one particular person when it was still alive, and when it called out to it, Ran picked up the same waves, involving her with the story. They then use their powers to reunite the two, and act as a sort of medium between the two. As a result, the climax was rather quiet, but very sweet.

Posted on 16 November 2008 with categories: Telepathy Shoujo Ran



Short Synopsis: Ran and Midori meet a grumpy old grandmother.
Highlights: Awwwwwwwww
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10 (Excellent)
So yeah, the premise doesn’t sound the most exciting, but for a series where drama definitely isn’t one of the strong points, it pretty much surprised me in terms of impact it made. Episode 19 and 21 were really genuine development for Midori, and far away from the usual cheesy drama from this series. I must say that I really like the idea of having Midori meet someone with the same outlook as her parents: scared to death because their daughter had strange powers.

Okay, so what if Midori’s violin just appeared from out of nowhere, this was such an adorable episode either way. I’m really glad to see that the creators had no intention to leave the series without any of the characters sufficiently developed, as I started to fear a few months ago. After all, the characters have been fleshed out really nicely, and their problems established, so it’s good to see that the added bit of drama actually works for this series.

It’s actually a bloody shame: I know that there are two novels that still need to be animated, which are going to take up four episodes. That leaves just one episode that the creators can fill in on their own wishes, and there’s still so much left that they can stuff in there: a bit of development for Ran (ironic how the titular character receives less development than her co-star, isn’t it?), an episode dedicated to Rui, Midori’s parents. Ah well, if they’re going to have to choose one: go for Midori’s parents. They’ve been strange McGuffin’s so far, but we hardly know anything about them. What’s up with them right now? Are they still scared of Midori? It would be awesome to see Midori as she tries to talk to them again. That’s in any case something that really fits in with the development of the past episodes.

Posted on 8 November 2008 with categories: Telepathy Shoujo Ran



Short Synopsis: Rin gets a love-letter.
Highlights: Quite possibly one of the funniest episodes of the series yet.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10 (Excellent)
Okay, so this episode was just a standalone story, there was no real continuity and it didn’t really progress the series forth in anyway. That classifies as filler, doesn’t it?

Ah, who cares if it’s a filler! This episode was hilarious!

I think that the term “filler” has evolved into a bit too negative of a term. I mean, a bad filler is just as bad (if not worse) as a bad episode that does progress the story. I’ve also seen many episodes that were labelled as fillers that actually did progress the series a little bit (El Cazador’s episodes for example: are they fillers or not?). I mean, if the episodes are fun, interesting or well written, then who cares if it’s a filler or not? That’s why I rather dislike the use of this term.

In any case, I really loved this episode. It was all about Rin, and he really is awesome when he stands in the spotlights. Seeing this series lapse into self-parody in the second half was also really fun to watch, and there was plenty of hilarious banter throughout the episode. Overall, it’s an episode well spent and it pretty much eliminated my fears that this series would turn dull in its final quarter.

It’s just a shame that the creators wasted a lot of potential due to the format of this episode. It’s obvious that the love-letter was just a misunderstanding, because Rin getting a girlfriend wouldn’t exactly fit the rest of the concept. I’m not sure whether I should be glad or not that this series won’t introduce a love-triangle near the end, but it would have been interesting to see what this series could do with it.

And so, with only six episodes left, there’s one thing that I still really want to see here: an episode dedicated to Rui. It was pretty hilarious how he completely emerged from the background like a bloodhound as soon as the word “jiken” (case) got mentioned, but I want more: an episode where he can fully show off his character. Even the time with the other ran didn’t really give him the chance to give everything he had.

Posted on 1 November 2008 with categories: Telepathy Shoujo Ran



Short Synopsis: It’s back to one-episode arcs as this episode shows the local school-festival.
Highlights: Finally! Character-development!
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10 (Excellent)
Those of you who’ve been following my posts about this series (all three of you) may remember how for the past episodes, I’ve been whining about the lack of character-development. Well, I didn’t think that the creators were actually going to listen to me. Sure, the episode was a bit cheesy here and there, but there’s no way that I’m going to complain about this excellent episode. It ranks both amongst the best and most hilarious episodes of the series so far, and right now it tossed my fears about this series losing steam in its final quarter into the trash bin.

I’m really glad that the creators decided to use the extra time of this series on character-development, rather than providing even more random stories (after all, that’s what the regular arcs are for). I can now also see the point that the creators wanted to make with Midori’s bad youth. In this episode, she fully realizes how differently she grew up from Ran (the background on Ran’s parents was also really appreciated), but the creators also pretty much set this series apart nearly every other mahou shoujo-series, by making Ran’s parents find out about Ran’s and Midori’s powers.

One thing that I also find strange is that a school-festival episode is definitely nothing new, and yet that never stood in the hilarity of this episode. I mean, it feels like 75% of every series that’s set into a school somehow has a school-festival that looks suspiciously like the other, but I guess that the fun comes from the different ways in which the featured classmates decide to solve their problems, and the different tasks that are handed to each other, making them still a bit unique, when compared to for example pool- and hot-spring-episodes, where there aren’t many different situations you can put your characters in…

Ran and Midori’s class couldn’t decide between a cafe and a haunted house, so they decided to go for a haunted cafe (which later turned into a haunted Kansai-ben cafe, due to an inside-joke from Midori). Especially Midori’s Medusa-outfit was awesome. It’s also interesting how her character-designs change, depending on her mood: when we first met her, she had evil eyes, she then went to a neutral/sarcastic look, and in this episode, her eyes switched shape to allow for a better dramatic effect. I only have to wonder where the animators were at that point. It’s such a shame that the budget didn’t work in the series’ favour at that time, and especially the part in the middle of the episode sounded like it was rushed at the last minute.

So, while I usually like to blog less light-hearted series, with complex plots or intense storylines, it’s also fun to once in a while blog such a light-hearted series, especially if it knows what it is and doesn’t get dull in its second half (which is kind-of why I don’t blog a lot of them. It’s one thing to blog a bad series with a complex plot, but I can imagine that it’s going to be exceptionally painful to blog a bad comedy-series, where you’ll run out of things to rant about after only two episodes). I’m not going to say that after this episode, I’m glad to have blogged this series. I did the same with Macross Frontier, also around this point in the series, and it went downhill pretty much instantly afterwards, so instead I’m just going to enjoy the final quarter of this charming series. ^^;

Posted on 26 October 2008 with categories: Telepathy Shoujo Ran



Short Synopsis: Ran gets possessed by the snake spirits, and their role on the island gets revealed.
Highlights: Blood? In this series?
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7/10 (Enjoyable)
Okay, so after this we’re about to reach the final quarter of this series, and I really wonder if it can pull off a good finale (and what kind of finale ti has in mind in the first place): the next episodes are either going to make or break this series, because it’s going to have to come up with original material, and it’s a bit stupid to close off the series with stories of the same calibre as episodes 8 to 10.

I’m going to be happy if the final episodes can manage the same consistency as the rest of the series; for this sort of anime, that’s good enough, though I’m not sure yet if it has the potential to pull it off. The fact remains that the main characters of this series haven’t been developed that well, so far. The creators have made up for it by fleshing them out really well, and interesting dialogue, and the question remains whether they can keep this up for the final part of the series. But still, this episode at least showed the very first blush on Rui when Ran touched him. Let’s hope that that’s a sign of things to come. I’d love to see the two of them get closer together in the end.

This episode wasn’t among the highlights of this series, but that’s understandable. It didn’t really have to do with the writing: this was meant to be a simple story, which was mostly about its conclusion (and indeed, it was a great conclusion), and it neither had the expressive animation or outstanding soundtrack of its preceding arcs. It was never meant to be an outstanding arc, and so the producers didn’t treat it as one. It’s nice, but I do expect the next arc to make up for it. In any case, the series shouldn’t go any lower in terms of quality than what it is right now. If it manages to do that, then I’ll call this one a success.

CHANGE USERNAME
Amagi
Oh and I totally forogt Reset ended now too. Not sure if I am the only fan of that but the whole second half was one of the better things I've seen this year.
Amagi
Okay now thinking three others came into my mind, but that's still not much. A lot of series started interesting and turned out mediocre or cheap after a while.
Amagi
Considering that I love Made in Abyss, PrinPrin, Fate/Apo (so far) and 18if too guess this season was better than I've expected. 2016 was kind of a let down imo, animewise. Off the top of my head I only remember Rakugo, Fune wo Amu and Bokudake I think.
Amagi
I didn't expect to like Virgin Soul as much as I do. Especially the last ~5 episodes got me. The weird thing is that I was disappointed by S1 actually.
SuperMario
@Travlos: I don't mind if you do a guess review on Virgin Soul, but let's me check with other admins first.

On Virgin Soul, I'm not sure if I like the bew development. It suddenly does a 180 degree turn on King Charriot, which I don't feel rewarding.
KTravlos
Kakegurui will have an anime original ending. It might be better than the ongoing manga. We shall see. An enjoyable foray.

Virgin Soul is going for a nice explosive ending. If no one writes a review, I would be willing to write one.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*kind of
Kaiser-Eoghan
While its very much in the shadow of the first and the protaganist started out kind annoying, I kind of got caught up in the spectacle and sentimentality of gunbuster 2.
KTravlos
Urasawa is preparing a new manga
KTravlos
yes the episode where Julian watched the documentary was fun. The Caligula like character comes from one of the lesser episodes of the series, when Kircheis beats up some rebelling third rate noble in the Empire.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Goddammit, fail, it just changed the colour of the login name...
Kaiser-Eoghan
I declare in the red truth that the next anime I shall watch is Diebuster.
Kaiser-Eoghan
From what little I saw, I remember a Caligula like character in one episode.
Anonymous1409409
I remember there's an episode where Julian just goes on Space Netflix and just watches a documentary. I actually liked that lol
KTravlos
yup, a LOGH that run like the Altair anime would be bad. It needs to show the sweep of history
AidanAK47
@Anon, I actually liked that aspect. It made the history of the world feel real.
Anonymous1409027
It's compressible, as there are many episodes of buildup, but that's where so many of the interesting details and depth of planning become evident. Some of those episodes read like a history textbook though, so we'll see how the new adaptation handles them,
Anonymous1409027
*pleasantly
KTravlos
Tytania was ok.
Kaiser-Eoghan
On the Amakusa Shiro reference in the fate review, I've seen a film about him from the 50s , theres also an old josei manga where the protagonist ends up becoming essentially regarded as him.
KTravlos
Hi Kaiser. Supposedly this is a re-imagining of the original story. Thus independent of the OVAs (old serieis). What exactly re-imagining means is something I and you do not know. We shall see. But it does mean that you do not need to watch the old series to enjoy this one. The OVA was definetly more expansive than the novels. So my guess is they will stick to the novels.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There's another anime, called Tytania based on his novels but I haven't seen that series.
Kaiser-Eoghan
As in condensable in the way nothing much is lost? I assume there are fillers in the original?
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm indifferent to the aesthetics of the new version. What I'm hoping for is that it will be accessible to newcomers and that I'll be able to jump on to the old series where the new one leaves off. I've seen very little of the original and it was a long time ago, is there any way the story is condensable?
KTravlos
The fact that they stayed away from the disgusting new manga is great. I am not too keen on the CGI ships, but they also did not rankle. It looks like it will honor the spirit of the old series, and I cannot ask for more. I am a massive LOGH fan. And the new video out gives me hope of revisiting one of the greatest sci-fi/historical settings out there. I am happy.
AidanAK47
I hope they are using the old anime as a base and not the new Manga adaption. As that Manga adaption is seriously lacking.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I like that they blinged up the space battles which is good because those things could get tiresome. But I really hate the design of Yang Wenli. They made him look so much younger and bishi. I don't think i could take this guy seriously if he started one of Wenli's signature hypothesis.
Anonymous1408919
Thoughts on that new LOGH PV? My expectations were low, so I'm presently surprised. Obviously they made everybody pretty boys, and Mamoro Miyano is voicing Reinhard I believe. But art and animation actually looks pretty decent overall. It's a PV, and LOGH's best quality is it's story and characters, so we'll have to see if they remain faithful or not. But it's nice to see it get a visual overhaul.
AidanAK47
By the way this site has the first chapters but check the other versions to find them.
http://mangapark.me/manga/tsurezure-children-wakabayashi-toshiya
AidanAK47
@Mario, Indeed. It's also a pity that over half the couples in the manga were not featured. We only got a small taste of Patricia.
SuperMario
Or maybe I'll try to read the manga. The last time I checked it online, the site doesn't have its first few chapters
SuperMario
@Aidan: man, Tsurezure Children sure is sweet. Really sad to see it ends
AidanAK47
So that's the end of Tsurezure Children.
....I'm gonna need a second season. Now.
....NOW GODDAMNIT! NOW!
KTravlos
As I said I understand the criticisms to RE:Creator, but ultimately I enjoyed most of the show. It could had been better, and it is a missed chance. But I have seen worse.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I gave up halfway through, there weren't even enough action scenes and those that were didn't justify waiting around for.
AidanAK47
Could have at least delivered on the action but that was rendered pointless due to the majority of the cast turning good and Altair being a complete cheat character.
AidanAK47
It would have been really fun to see characters discuss their stories with their creators or indulge in what our world has to offer but they really glossed over that part.
AidanAK47
It really should have gone deeper into the whole meta aspect introducing anime characters to the real world. Like they did with Mamika's powers being ridiculously destructive when outside a kid friendly setting.
AidanAK47
@Puran, I at least like the message of the final episode. But as for the show itself it was just missed potential on a lot of levels. I wanted Anime Genre battle royale and instead got a secondhand Shirobako with a crap shounen anime attached.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have been forgiving of Anno as I've gotten older.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I also just re-watched gunbuster, I'd previously dismissed the ova after a few episodes when I was a teenager, I'd found it too slow, didn't have that issue with the 90 minute version I just finished. I've never see the sequels.
Lenlo
Ill have to finish Creators... at some point
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've been dipping back into the Lupin franchise, Gold of babylon was particularly screwball, kind of ridiculous comedy caper/adventure thing you just have to run with....turns out it was directed by a live action filmaker I especially like who made bizzare noir films in the 60s.
Puran
So that explains why Meteora had so much air time in Re:Creators. It's her story....

I hated the ending and I disliked the anime overall.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: It was a genuine surprise to see that Assayas decided to make a film framed around hentai =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I loved how incoherent demonlover was.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: The criticisms I'll give wind river, is a slight inconsistent performance from Renner and that very awkwardly inserted flashback scene.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: on Wind River, I agree it's a well-executed case of the week drama, although there are some plot pregressions that I don't get (how did they find out about the man's corspe again?). About Demonlover, man, the film gives me a chill down my spine. Heartless. And a bit misogynist.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: as much as I loved Wong (yeah I too prefer him over Malick), sometimes I do think Western cinema give him too much praise that sadly overshadow other Asian directors.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Wong is important to me as a hong-kong filmaker, he offers something entirely different from the whole Woo/Lam Hong komg movies.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: On a more positive note Maggie Cheung did mention that she felt her early work with Wong was when she first truly became a proper actress.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: ....I had no idea he had such a sad background.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*investigation drama
SuperMario
@Kaiser: that film also marked/ signified a rather sad period of Hongkong showbiz. Leslie Cheung badically lived the live of the protagonist and commited suicide in 1997. His girlfriend on screen, during the filming, was kidnaped, raped and taken topless picture. The damnest thing is that everyone knowed the culprit but did nothing, and in the press it was just deemed as "kipnapped and assaulted"
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Wind river was a big surprise for me, just goes to show that with the right execution an ordinary police drama movie can be elevated higher.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Thats the interesting thing, tracking a directors career.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Just binge watched the new dominion tank police ovas , admittedly these are kind of reptitive and extremely silly but its hard to hate on something so shamelessly fun that made me feel like a child again.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: you said it there. DoBW is rather raw and unpolished but that's one of the reason why I am drawn to it more compare to his other works.
AidanAK47
In all honesty, it would be nice to finally see a continuation after fusion as all games after that have just been adding chapters in-between.
Vonter
Finally I wonder, if Metroid Prime 4 will definitely branch out of the main Metroid's continuity. It's curious how an interquel subseries is still going to add things in between the first and the second entries in the main franchise.
Vonter
AidanAK47 - I think is nice we can see both takes. Especially since neither one despite a few qualms are still very solid entries for this franchise. I just hope Metroid moves forward, as IMO this is the only game that really needed a facelift do to the heavy limitations of the gameboy. And I hope the secret gallery at the end is teasing how the producer plans to move the plot forward.
AidanAK47
I thought it might be like that but it's good to know they are at least on a close level. I didn't really want Samus Returns to replace AM2R as the "Definitive" version of Metroid 2. Mostly because a lot of love was put into AM2R andit came at a point when it felt Nintendo didn't give a crap about Metroid.
Vonter
Like Zero Mission there's something added to Samus Returns but I'll just leave it at that.
Vonter
I think both have strong points. Samus Returns have better boss battles, gameplay mechanics and more intense action pieces. AM2R IMO has more atmosphere, takes advantage of elements Nintendo don't even try like the Federation subplot, and the ending portion narratively has more heart in AM2R, while in Samus Returns it feels mostly like "the final level".
Vonter
I also did got lost a couple of times in Samus Returns and aside from the big water section in AM2R, the latter is more linear game.
Vonter
I think the controls in Samus Returns bring more to the table though. The 360 aiming makes for better ways to shoot enemies and some of the bosses take advantage of that. If it weren't for the 3DS giving hand cramps because you're holding L and R at several points it'll be completely the most ideal way to play.
Vonter
AidanAK47 - AM2R is very good, I think it has the advantage that because it uses sprites IMO backgrounds and enemies are more vibrant and easier to appreciate. The Federation soldiers are better executed in AM2R and that secret section with the ship is very eery.
AidanAK47
@Vonter, How does it stack up to AM2R? I bought it and am still waiting on it to be delivered but I have the feeling that AM2R would be the better game when comparing.
Vonter
I took me 12 hours to 100% and I've heard the best ending is beating it in less than 4 hours. I think unlike Zero Mission item percentage don't matter, it's mainly to unlock an art gallery.
Vonter
My main criticism is this being a 3DS game. Small enemies can be hard to see or appreciate. And I think the 3DS wasn't made for heavy action packed games like this or Smash Bros. I got the rubber from the circle pad come off in two occasions. Also unless there was something big in the background, several areas felt lacking in detail. Still Samus and the bosses look good.
Vonter
In terms of difficulty, the game has the enemies packing more damage than in other 2D Metroids. Is difficult in the sense than you can't tank damage as in other iterations, you have to be aware of enemy behavior and bosses mainly get easier do to familiarizing with their patterns, since I did die a lot each time I faced a new boss. And got used to kill them faster as I went along.
Vonter
Ok, so I beat Samus Returns. It's quite good. Unlike Fusion that had dialogue at midst the gameplay. Samus Returns only has a prologue of exposition and any cutscenes mainly accentuate the reactions of Samus confronting a new enemy. The level design is dense, despite having isolated areas like in Fusion and the original Samus Returns, each area is very mazelike.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: =< Awww I kind of like demonlover actually despite all its flaws, it had great sound design and had this cold, clinical, un-nerving mood to it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Days of being wild does feel a bit un-realized/un-polished/rough compared to his other work definitely but its probably the rawest I've seen from him and that has its appeal.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Haven't seen farewell my concubine come to think of it. Regarding the scifi element I felt I embraced it more further into the film when it started to intermingle more.
While I am more forgiving toward Malick's recent films than most, that decline in quality means I have to pick Wong.
KTravlos
by the way in RE:Creators we probably will be getting a future series focusing on the hunt for Magane :p Meteora probably playing the role of detective. I also bet her novel will be wordy and heavy in exposition :p
KTravlos
i.e his end game might had been a cross-species revolution against him anyway. We will see
KTravlos
In Bahamut Chris proves to not be totally evil, but he is totally crazy. That said I am seeing one of my hunches getting supported, the hunch was that his cruelty towards daemons was with the purpose of bringing them down enough that they would be willing to work with humans as euals (As they are in Jean's army) and thus via that create a more unified world. I
KTravlos
RE: Creators has come to its end. I know the problems everyone has with it, and while it failed to raise to the level of exceptional show, I loved it. As I said, it had been years since a show kept me so excited episode after episode. They blew it at some point, but ultimately for me this is an en-joyful show, and one I would happily binge watch in the future again.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: question for you though, between these two directors, which one do you prefer: Wong Kar-Wai or Terrance Malick?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: if you enjoyed both 2046 and In the Mood for Love, by all mean check out Days of Being Wild. The trio forms a loose trilogy and Days of Being Wild was the first film that Wong began his unique unconventional style. It's one of my personal favorite of Wong and it's a chance for you to watch the late Leslie Cheung acted (you might watch him already in Farewell My Concubine)
SuperMario
@Kaiser: 2046 is indeed a passionate film, and one of his best looking film. He tried something different in 2046 too, experimented with scifi (one of the best part in the film for me)
SuperMario
@Kaiser: it's stritcly Wong Kar Wai's romance we're talking about, since I don't find the rest of Chinese take on romance that interesting. Romance or melodrama is one of his main theme throughout his career
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: It was slightly overly long however.
I've also seen chungking express, in the mood for love and fallen angels. I think this Chinese take on romance is really clicking with me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I also thought it was a very passionette film and I love how Kar-wong-wai uses the music in it. I also think its one of his best looking films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I had a look at that Chinese film 2046, very effectively melancholic take on fleeting relationships while also successfully being quite sensual while staying classy and without ever showing too much. Tony Leung and Maggie Cheung are two beautiful people =P
SuperMario
for those who still want to catch up with 18if, episode 11 has a huge recap, while wrapping up the show with a new overarching plot. Hopefully they don't pull another Matrix here
SuperWooper
It's shounen-y for sure. The competitions have been my least favorite parts of the show so far. If you're still watching, you might appreciate it more once the Tenpei Cup is over.
Anonymous1399692
Damn Ballroom looks so good. But I really can't enjoy it despite that I want to. It has too many of these typical shounen moments and plot points I can't stand.
Anonymous1399684
Omae wa mou shindeiru
Lenlo
Mononoke is actually what made me find Ayakashi. Also a good show.
SuperMario
Regarding Ayakashi, I only watched the Mononoke segment
SuperMario
"It was a long, long trip, and we're coming finally to the end of the journey. Thank you, Manoyama and Chupacabra. And thank you, 5 EURO" - Sandal-san.
Lenlo
Ayakashi was great for me Kaiser. I enjoyed my time with it
Vonter212
@AidanAK47 - The hard aspect has been commented in several reviews with bosses being able to easily kill you. (Although in my experience it might be just getting a pattern). In terms of length most 2D games can be beaten under 3 hours. This one seems to clock at at least 6 to 15 if you want to collect everything. Then again, we'll see in subsequent playthroughs.
AidanAK47
`@Vonter. It's out now but I don't remember seeing anyone claim it's the longest hardest entry 2D wise.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Going to watch new dominion tank police next and read violence action and Oddman 11.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It took me years to get round to it, but I finally watched Ayakashi and as expected like most anthologies, again its mixed, the first is a solid ghost story that improves after a weak start, but that third one with the cat spirit was great, really liked how experimental that looked.
Vonter
Soo a new Metroid comes out this week. It is said, it's the longest, hardest entry in regards to the 2D iterations. Still not as great as Super, and depending on your fanaticism it might or not be as good as Zero Mission.
SuperMario
But they didn't pull that scene off too well. It's just... unmemorable. In fact the whole show is very unremarkable. Now only 1 episode left I might as well finish it but I won't give it a full review
SuperMario
Koi to Uso has been disappointing so far. Episode 10 featured the sequence that i was looking forward the most in the manga: the former classmate tells the one sided crush of the main girl from her POV. For a romance that contrived and manipulated like this one, hearing this from the third person's perspective prove to be more powerful
Vonter
@HelghastKillzone - Good luck with that. I almost had my car's engine damaged since it has been raining heavily where I live. Had to ask for help the next day to pull it out of mud. Still not as bad as the other three cars that did get stuck in the water.
HelghastKillzone
Dealing with work and the total loss of my car really sucks at the moment so I'm quite tied up for this week.
KTravlos
I do agree to a point, but to be frank all the episodes of Princess Principal to date have been so solid I have a hard time deciding. Episode 5 though was still the best from a holistic point (action, direction, music etc) was the one introducing Chise
SuperMario
Agree. Dorothy has the biggest heart out of all the spy girls. Also "help" that her episodes are all melodramatic.
Amagi
This episode of PrinPrin showed again that Dorothy is the best character by far. Not just herself but her episodes as well are better written than the rest if you ask me.
KTravlos
It just hit me. The characters in Princess Principal may be very well working for IngSoc :p
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, in the seven chapters it's only really two of them that contain dark shocking content. Chapter three being the biggest one in that regard.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: I read a comment where someone said subahibi shocked them more than saya no uta. While I haven't played it yet, I have seen some of a letsplay...it lleft me thinking....how many hours until this actually gets good/truly unhinged .
AidanAK47
After Reading SubaHibi, Made in Abyss's dark turn didn't shock me too much. Maybe I just got desensitised. I will have a review of SubaHibi hopefully up in a week though to clarify my feelings on it after just finishing it, It was interesting but disappointing.
KTravlos
well, well. Both Made in the Abyss and Virgin Soul do not hold back. Grim! RE:Creators is warping up. Comparing with these other shows I can fully appreciate the problems people have with it. But still I am glad I am sticking to the end. Altair's voice actor by the way did great.
AidanAK47
@Helghast, And Kings Field was the Demon Souls before Demon Souls came out.
KTravlos
having binge watched several of this season's shows I would say Princess Principal is the most rounded. Made in Abyss is good. Kakegurui and The Reflection as SuperMario said will depend on your tastes. There is also Shouko no Altair. You will like it if you liked Tanya Saga of Evil, or Legend of Galactic Heroes, or Arslan Senki or manga like Vinland Saga, Gunka no Baltzar, and especially Historie
Anonymous1385641
Jesus...me watching this weeks Made in Abyss https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ogzsWhZcmM
HelghastKillzone
So... Demon Souls was the Dark Souls before Dark Souls came out.
SuperMario
@anon1385426: the safest bets aside from Made in Abyss are Welcome to the Ballroom and Princess Principal. Kakegurui and the Refection are for more acqurired taste
Anonymous1385426
Aside from Made in Abyss, what's the best anime this season?
Lenlo
@KT, the pacing and the framerate early on are my two biggest issues. Later on the story starts to get abit more engaging, and they start doin things I didnt expect, but the pacing is still there. Some akward pauses.
Lenlo
Look, Berserk and Dark Souls are both amazing. But I only have 3 Dark Souls games, and 38 Berserk volumes. Im clearly biased
KTravlos
I sat down and watched the first 4 episodes of The Reflection. It is an interesting attempt, and I can see the people making it having fun doing so. But I did notice a pacing issue. For some reason the episodes felt like they dragged a bit too long.
AidanAK47
Dark Souls is the Berserk of Video Games.
Amagi
Dark Souls really went all Berserk if you ask me
AidanAK47
I am not one for putting down law but can we never ever compare anything to Dark Souls ever again? Cause it's actually become really tiresome how everything is the dark souls of something.
Lenlo
No other sentence has made me want to watch Made in Abyss more
HelghastKillzone
I guess we're finally at the point where Made in Abyss goes all Dark Souls/Bloodborne.
Amagi
Apo's Jack the Ripper had at least a nice idea behind it, it's just the clothes that are a bad choice. But there are just too many lolis for the sake of fanservice in that game. I accept it if there is at least a reason for this but it's usually just random.
Amagi
@Aidan: Same here. I was never a fan of genderbendings and turning historical people into lolis. The first one I can accept with people like Arthuria because it added a lot to her character, but most of them are just plain and generic. I just see no reason why pirates, grown up men or Blavatsky would ever appear as little girls. Especially since popular beliefs should influence their appearance.
SuperMario
On Altair, one commenter did an excellent job of poiting out the appeal of that show; and frankly the show is wearing on me now.
SuperMario
@Travlos: I'm glad you enjoy Princess Principal. I'm quite surprised myself that in the latter half the show slowed its pace down which mean the focus is switched from action to more characters interactions; which I greatly enjoy
KTravlos
Well I binge watched Princess Principal. That is a very good show. I was surprised. Good animation, good music, the art is good, hell I even did not mind the protagonist art. But what I really like is the stories. All the episode were pretty solid and interesting.
AidanAK47
Just won a fight by the skin of my teeth thanks to my Lancer, Cu Chulainn. You the man Cu!
AidanAK47
@Amagi, Been playing Grand Order myself. It's rather fun. There are some good original character in it but I notice with Quantity certain figures designs were pretty terrible. I thought Assassins of black was the worst but some Grand Order servents manage to top it in terrible. Why all the bikini's?
Amagi
Fate/GO has quite some interesting original characters there. Wish we'd see them in some actual manga or anime series with more backstory someday. - I also like that we finally have an overpowered, interesting and competent Hassan with King Hassan for once. His design is metal AF too.
KTravlos
Binge watched Altair. The pacing of the show is a problem, but in general the raw material is good. Altair is sympathetic, and the world is interesting. But I do feel this is the kind of show that would had gained by a Monster or LOGH type treatment. Also, man it is scary how accurate they got some of the traits of Greeks (Phoenicians in the show). I am a Greek, I should know! :p
KTravlos
forgot to mention. I saw the 91 Days special. Three side stories that give some depth to the events in the main anime, but nothing that goes beyond it's end. Still they were in general ok to good.
SuperWooper
It's got Jude Law playing "this kind of huge robot butler called Charles, who is also a rocket ship." What could possibly go wrong?
AidanAK47
Anime with Jaden Smith? Um..I don't know about this.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: one of the good thing about SoL shows like Centaur and even 18if is that their episodes are self-contained, so you can just jump right in to watch the good ones and ignore the rest
SuperMario
I just love Chise's presence so I might enjoy the last episode more than anyone else. But yeah I'm quite satisfied with Princess Principal right now
AidanAK47
Actually I am quite surprised Princess Principal hasn't gone off the rails yet. Might even turn out to be a fun show in the end. If the man can make it to the finish line without a misstep.
AidanAK47
Hey I am having fun with my Shows. Made in Abyss is still quite excellent and Fate/Apoc is picking up. Even started playing Fate/Grand Order.
Lenlo
Man, sounds like I was the only one to have a good week with their show. Reflection really stepped it up this week in pretty much every category. Not sure it will last, but hey. Ill take one
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm so disappointed in 18...if. Perfect opportunity to capitalize on something with a dreamlike feel to it and be creative only it ends up getting held back.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I see Vonter and Mario are seducing me into watching Centaur.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*can't
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can'y see myself giving re creators a second chance, and from skimming these conversations, why should the show only get going at the end? It just sounds like too little too late.
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