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
Kaiser-Eoghan
If anyone has any suggestions for weird short animations, I'm looking for excuses to watch some more and I'm in the mood for them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Masky: Mario's youtube link had cgi models of rem and ram in the video.
Masky
I'm confused when was Rem even mentioned
Kaiser-Eoghan
I only ever watched he-man and stuff related to it in passing when I was younger, Conan was more my thing back then.
Kaiser-Eoghan
For so long I'd always referred to she-ra as she-man.
AidanAK47
@Mario, What is this heresy!
....
....Rems always cute.
Anonymous3084910
Hilda is fine, though is very laidback kinda like a young reader's novel. It has its moments but its fantasy with slice-of-life coming of age.
Anonymous3084910
@SuperMario Yeah I know, She Ra is the twin sister of He Man. But strangely it seems Dreamworks may not have the right to those characters. It was a marketing idea trying to bring more girls to that universe but like most girls show from the time it had a very flat depiction of what little girls want to see.
SuperMario
Sorry Aidan, I know it's blasphemy but I have to post here. Enjoy the OP song with the twins https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v9MUjISNm0U&index=4&list=PLU56jBSlcHw8-ol9Hi4lJ0GR0tU6EOf2a
SuperMario
I'll probably check out Hilda. Heard a lot of hypes about that show
SuperMario
@Vonter: I've heard of She-Ra, she's the female counterpart (well, sister) of He-Man (the most powerful man in the universe and the secret identity of Prince Adam). Sounds silly but I'm not even kidding
Vonter
All in all, despite not being a big thing, I think is an enjoyable recommendation. My only nitpick is that it maybe too light hearted for some kinda like above My Little Pony but below something Voltron. Also despite being less childish than the original is still kinda of girly with lots of pastel colors although it balances it a bit having girls being more tomboyish in different degrees.
Vonter
Like with Voltron it amuses me seeing anime tropes being played through western lens. Since I'm a bit hesitant to say that could this count as a harem series despite not being male gaze moments? Also having the most sensible hotspring episode I've seen.
Vonter
In this one this She Ra has pathos. A bit like Korra there's doubt in her role and also a complicated relationship with her rival. I do like the role reversal in the knight's tale this clearly is, in that most roles that would be played by men are played by women in this story. Matriarchy, displacement of both femminine beauty but also empowerment.
Vonter
So I've watched some of the new She Ra from Netflix. So far I'm in, it's not deep but it's quite charismatic. I do like there's more pathos in regards to these characters which pretty much were confined to their archetype to an extreme like the original Power Rangers.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It manages to make watching something like running engaging, when I'd otherwise probably not watch the sport. Also, last week the show ended up popping into my head when I was sitting around doing pretty much nothing and made me think "Ok fuck it, not sitting around doing nothing, going to go out for a run around the block"
Lenlo
I also agree, characters losing in sports is important. They can't start at the top, it makes the series lose meaning
Lenlo
I quite enjoyed Kaze Fui this week. I think your correct that the one who got the reality check was Kurahara, who thought he was the only one able to actually make it. I also thing that he has a competitive streak a mile wide, and might be a little afraid of failure. Doesnt think the team can make it, so why bother
Kaiser-Eoghan
Think I wasn't i the mood for honda-san this week even though I laughed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I like it when sports series actually show the characters you know...actually lose.
Anonymous3083989
Huh, interesting in this episode of Kaze ga that it's Kakeru who got a reality check during the track meet since he was beaten by two other runners. I think we're due for an episode soon where he has to confront his past demons instead of fleeing from them.
Anonymous3083626
@Kaiser-Eoghan - Aging in fiction, I think has more to do with the story than the characters. I mean the jokes about Ash Ketchum, Detective Conan, Archie. The Flinstones tried to make different stories by aging Pebbles and Bam Bam. Or Batman having two Robins graduating into their own heroes. But in the end dynamics change, hence why most cartoons don't age the characters.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Which is why when aging does occur in anime/manga, such as in vinland saga or nanoha for example, its appreciated.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And of course, animated characters often don't age much.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can remember enjoying the simpsons movie back when I watched it, but thinking about it it really was just an extended episode. Really the show peaked with the who shot Mr Burns episode. Catching bits of recent episodes and seeing them use modern stuff while they never age seems weird too.
Amagi
I do think series are allowed to move forward though, I am kinda interested in the Pkmn movie for example. But certain shows should just end, Simpsons for example was a parody of the 90s, it just can't work in a more modern setting IMO.
Amagi
I stopped with the Simpsons when Maude was killed/died, it was just a step in the wrong direction they should have never done and it killed the series for me. I disliked it before already though, I think I noticed the series getting worse since season..9? Or 10, not sure anymore.
Amagi
Anime for Dorohedoro announced.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Therefore ruining the fanservice fun for everybody.
Kaiser-Eoghan
My favourite beach episodes are ones where it rains and they end up not being able to go.
Kaiser-Eoghan
After that it was just the film for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Actually, regarding the simpsons, the episode I stopped on was sometime in the early 2000s, Homer was stuck on some island resort or something.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I suppose it was just as much a case of falling out of watching/playing too and then there being so many episodes/games catchup was impossible. I probably should read the manga someday.
Anonymous3081957
@Kaiser-Eoghan -Kinda like Sponge Bob, Power Rangers or The Simpsons, I can't blame those who move forward, It's imposible for a show to go that long without losing steam. I did check the Sun and Moon first season and while I think the personality and energy is better it doesn't exactly push the concept forward. Still somehow Pokemon is still a phenomenon.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Very strange hearing a Pikachu talk with Ryan Reynolds voice. But my days of pokemon are behind me.
KyokoHyuga
?????
KyokoHyuga
who likes pokemon here
SuperMario
@Amagi: I think the person who made the sub for Maquia did a pretty neat job. Not perfect but the translation flows well
Vonter
We've seen realistic Pokémon fanart, but how does a movie looks when it attempts it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q8CKgQFo5U8
Amagi
How are the subs for Maquia? I only heard anons complain about it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*dealing with
Kaiser-Eoghan
Though you should really torrent it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
There is 1080p stream on kiss anime, if you hate deal with the ads on that site the 4up stream on anilinkz has the best quality of the available links
Lenlo
Where did you see Maquia online? I still need to watch it. PM it to me on discord maybe? Pretty please? <3
SuperMario
One fact that not many people know is that Penguin Highway is penned by Tomihiko Morimi. It indeed has many Morimi's signature inputs
SuperMario
This year, I'm doing well with catching up anime films (kudos for Australian's Madman who always license these titles very quickly). So far, I've watched Mirai, Maquia, Penguin Highway, Let Me Eat Your Pancreas and My Hero Academia the Movie
SuperMario
So I watched two anime movies this last week, Penguin Highway in theatre and Maquia online. Both of them are pretty solid in general, especially Penguin that has magical realism elements and some great chemistry. Whereas Mari Okada's writting still rubs me in the wrong way sometimes
Lenlo
D: He did, back in August actually apparently
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: I heard Dino's voice actor died.
Kaiser-Eoghan
If we all took Goblin slayers attitude to trolls, then we would more easily ignore the trolls =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
Big twist in the golden kamuy manga.
Animosh
@SuperMario: remember that in the voice drama Rikka mentioned talking to Yuuta in their classroom during the ball game. Pretty sure it's about that.
SuperMario
@Animosh: i just watched the episode and noticed the lyrics as well. "The Promise" seems vague at the moment. Could be between Yuuta and whoever fits but I agree the "save someone from boredom" is about Akane
Animosh
You learn something every day. ;) Honestly though, I actually skipped the opening, so I hadn't even noticed that it had been translated until others pointed it out. And most of the time the lyrics are just cheesy one-liners, so I usually don't pay much attention to them either. But once in a while there's some nice hints hidden in there...
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I never really ever paid attention to the lyrics in anime openings, I'd never thought to.
Animosh
The Gridman OP has been translated for the first time, and there's some pretty interesting reveals in there: it mentions a "promise" made in a classroom (so now we know how Yuuta and Rikka bonded in the past - glad it wasn't a simple confession), and talks of "rescuing" someone (presumably Akane) from boredom. So I guess she'll join the good guys eventually?
Lenlo
1200 words. I need to stop writing so much.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I haven't seen last weeks episode of Irozuku or this weeks =< I'm waiting now for a bit to see if the series paysoff.
Animosh
Goddamn those magic segments in Irozuku were stunning! It's a shame its humdrum drama can't live up to its visual beauty, but I'll take it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think Ash's design is based a bit on River phoneix.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Sorry Eiji but your Ash is in another castle.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@CoolerAnon: I was about to say that. Kidnapping gets used alot in shojo.
Anonymous3072040
Yeah Ash is basically Princess Peach
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: I share your concerns, I don't know what studio is doing it. Some people want it to be mappa, some don't want it to be polygon pictures to adapt it. Its and long and violent manga, with some very funny at times dark humour, it could end up rushed and/or censored.
Anonymous3072021
As much as I love Dorohedoro I'm unsure if I should be happy or worried at it getting an adaptation, it isn't exactly the kind of story I imagine being easy to adapt well.
Lenlo
Yeah, I am touching on that in my writeup as we speak. The compressed story is causing Ash to be captured every other week.
Animosh
I agree Banana Fish was great this week though! My only gripe is that I'm getting sick and tired of seeing Ash get kidnapped again and again. He just escaped a couple of episodes ago! And he's just a lot more fun to watch when he's out there doing stuff.
Animosh
In a way the fights actually feel more realistic to me than those in Banana Fish. Sure, they're fantastical, bizarre even, but its battle system has a clear internal logic, and generally no power is infallible (each has its limitations). In Banana Fish the fights are rather poorly thought out by comparison. Their purpose is more to make Ash look cool than to give him realistic hurdles to overcome.
Animosh
@Kaiser: what sets Jojo apart from other battle shounen for me is how ridiculously creative its fights can get. Part 2 already shows some signs of this, but the introduction of the Stand system in Part 3 pushes it to another level, and in Part 4 the fights are consistently awesome. There are no simple beam struggles here: every fight is a battle of wits, between people with wildly different powers
Niel
Vinland Saga anime, and Now Dorohedoro just got announced. i'm really liking this trend.
Lenlo
Lots to writeup on Banana Fish this week.
Lenlo
Just finished it, I really like Blanca.
Lenlo
Because Jackie Chan and his stunt crew are some of the best in the world. There is a reason he has to insure his guys from his own pocket. No agency will take them
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have no idea how the hell Jackie Chan is still alive.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Action works best for me when I really feel that theres danger involved. Thats why when some actors do their own stunts, you can fear for the actors life, and also the character.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And thats why I'm a big fan of all that Chinese martial arts stuff from the 60s and 70s, that really expertly crafted chereography.
Lenlo
As for action, I like good choreography more than any super powers. Its why Cowboy Bebop, Seirei no Moribito, Sword of the Stranger and some Naruto fights are fantastic.
Lenlo
Im about to watch this weeks episode, so this chat makes me hopeful. I agree Ash and Eiji are the backbone of the series, and yeah me and Kaiser both agreed that the Gang war aspect was pretty weak, though I thought the finish with Arthur wasnt half bad
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I think Banana fish has a great grit to it for this reason.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm even more thankful to Banana fish too for that it keeps the action within the bounds of out of fantasy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've always been kind of a guns and swords and kungfu gut.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Black lagoons great example of anime action I can get behind.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I always found weapon combat and fist/kicking combat more raw and real,tangible than beamspam.
Anonymous3070972
But yeah if you're not a fan supernatural power fantasy action shounens, then maybe not your cup of tea, and that's totally cool
Anonymous3070972
Oh also if I'm recommending a fight from part 4, I'd say check out Highway Star
Anonymous3070972
Kira is a pretty cool villain though; he's always underpowered compared to the main heroes, but manages to somehow get out of the situation with luck or smarts; if nothing else, I'd recommend watching some Youtube clips
Anonymous3070972
*Turn off. lol.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Its more than, even when I was younger supernatural power fantasy action shounen never appealed to me.
Anonymous3070972
Admittedly JoJo always has bad with exposition though, and always will be just due to the style, so that can definitely be a turn on for some people
Anonymous3070972
If you like slice of life with hijinks and a murder mystery combined with cool battles, you'll like part 4
Anonymous3070972
Yeah I can see why you might not like part 1 & 2, they were made in the 80s; I'd recommend part 4 and part 5 (ongoing rn) tbh, I feel like those are better for a modern viewing experience
Anonymous3070972
I used to think that BF's greatest strength was the plot; know I realize it's really about Ash & Eiji's connection first and foremost: as good as the plot can be, Ash & Eiji's relationship is absolutely the backbone.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: Also that scene where Ash is thinking to himself, looking over Eiji.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Nah, I pretty much gave up on jojo midway through part 2.
Anonymous3070771
Also, anybody notice Blanca's VA is Kira (from Diamond is Unbreakable)? What a wonderful duwang!
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Niello: The producer guy Miyano is voicing, much like the show is irritating because the show has this "look at me look at me" feel to it, it just comes off as desperate to me and this is just going by the one episode I watched and hated.
Anonymous3070771
What's that damn piano song that plays when Ash and Eiji are talking about Japan. It's too good. For some reason, it's really magical
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: I was the one who said that.
@Niello: You don't need to see steins; gate zero, myself and lenlo discussed it to death as it was airing, its all over the place. I like the original too but after a while of the first half being fun, I just wanted it to start.
Anonymous3070771
Phew, great episode of BF; whoever said the gang war stuff was the weakest point was right. this stuff is getting fantastic again.
Niello
Also I agree, Zombieland first episode was amazing, second episode is still rather great, and then the other episodes have just been meh.
Niello
In Zombieland it doesn't help that the character he's voicing with that tone is an asshole, which isn't a good combination because it's making him more annoying by the episode.
Niello
Steins;Gate is pretty good, but I don't think I like it nearly as much as most people do (I gave it a 7/10). I also haven't bothered with Steins;Gate 0. And although I didn't mind Myano in Steins;Gate, I didn't particularly like his voice there either.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I love the sombreness of Blanca's character. Poor Ash, so broken in this episode.
AidanAK47
Yeah after episode 2 it's been a downgrade. Zombieland is still alright to watch but it really has become what it parodied.
Vonter
Zombieland sadly has winded down. I mean it was expected but still I was hoping some more creative attempts to use in the typical genre. It'll have been better if they had waken up more slowly in order to flesh the archetypes a bit more. It still has charismatic moments though.
Lenlo
Really Niello? See, I like it because it's the voice we never got in Steins;Gate 0. Its Okabe's Kyouma voice, and I have a nostalgic love for it
Masky
Wasn't gyary isekai another one that existed?
Niello
I hate Miyano voice in Zombieland Saga and find him annoying tbh.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I am getting sick of self aware humour though. I see this show as something that was fun to make (such as Miyano seems to be feeling based on performances) but not fun for me to watch and that kind of extends to the manager who while I agree would be the best part of the show, I stopped finding funny after the joke was done.
Lenlo
For me, the main selling point of Zombieland Saga was always Miyano. I love this mans crazy voice.

And in regards to Isekai, discounting this most recent one, SAO actually is pretty good this season so far. Kirito is still bland, but its taking things a lot slower and actually building the world. Its taking its time with 52 episodes
Kaiser-Eoghan
By the sound of it, if some who liked the first episodes don't care for the ones beyond those two episode, then I'm glad I stopped watching.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I did flick through episode 2 but the rap battle thing was particularly awful.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: I couldn't stand the humour and have up on the show after the first half of episode 1.
Anonymous3065780
What Zombieland does have that Ore doesn't is better animation and Miyano hamming it up. But that's all it has going for it at the moment.
Anonymous3065780
You have a few "ha ha look at this" moments scattered here and there like how Ore episode 5 was basically one big middle finger to the nature of anime production, or Zombieland's Tae Yamada. But the parody value from the first two episodes is all but gone.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: Its in part my own fault , I jumped the gun in the first half of episode one then all goodwill I had for it died after the first couple of minutes.
Anonymous3065780
@Kaiser Same here. Very disappointed that Zombieland is going down the same route that Mahou Shoujo Ore went down: basically becoming what it purported to parody.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Every isekai that pops up in recent seasons, I simply just ignore it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
On another note, surely I'm not the only one who dropped zombieland saga? I'm not alone am I?
Kaiser-Eoghan
I mean, I've never seen an episode of konosuba or rezero and refuse to , no game no life is a series of two halves, I barely watched any of gate .
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think the only one I can say I care about is Tanya.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I think I've done a fairly good job at avoiding the modern isekai thing, I've never actually cared enough to sit through one fully beyond the first season of log horizon, 4 seasons of zero no tsukaima. Other than that I've seen maybe 7 episodes of sword art . Never seen a single episode of overlord and won't.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: I'm also glad their mentioning stuff like the peoples will, the historical assassination of the Russian emperor. I enjoy the tidbits of historical reference for the most part.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: But I don't think the animation is as good as it should be in the anime adaptation and its not as violent as the manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: I am up to date on the manga, the post first scene chapters that have caught my attention most have been Edogai, the big scenes in the prison and that bonnie and clyde duo.
Anonymous3065196
@SuperMario Are you watching GK s2? Any thoughts on it since you aren't covering this weekly?
Anonymous3065196
I think I laughed more from this than most of the comedies airing right now thanks to these bizarre situations and characters they're introducing.
Anonymous3065196
The anime is now covering the parts in the manga where things get a lot more dramatic, and a lot more weird and oddly hilarious.
Anonymous3065196
Wonder if anyone is still watching Golden Kamuy? We're way past the embarrassing CG bear.
Kaiser-Eoghan
A polar bear isekai exists.
AidanAK47
@Anon, it will be after in another world but a polar bear but before the gyarus in another world Isekai.
MaskyAtPublicComputer
Nobody could care about world building not really making sense or being inconsistent if it didn't have the grimderp parts that cause internet flame wars
MaskyAtPublicComputer
So it goes back to what I said: GS at its core is about (at least seemingly) about cool gorey tactical action with some character study of what its like to be broken person like GS is, but rape stuff just kinda ruins it for most people and it doesn't handle subject well
MaskyAtPublicComputer
gear doesn't rust and break down
MaskyAtPublicComputer
Anyhoo, I might remember wrong, but didn't GS purposedly use lower quality gear that has danger of breaking down in middle of combat? Thats kinda what I meant with "apparently using average quality gear is too dangerous", especially since its kinda hard to believe goblins could repurpose armor used by humans for themselves. I'm completely okay with him not using magical gear since D&D wise magical
MaskyAtPublicComputer
Like, you can't be like "Aha, characters think they are in JRPG, but its actually tabletop rpg oh wait no, it still follows realistic logic instead of tabletop rpg rules"
MaskyAtPublicComputer
See, barbarians in D&D don't wear armor because they are stronger without it, sure they have lower AC, but they have lot of health so they can tank a hit. So showing barbarian adventure dying in one hit because they were stupid enough to not wear armor just comes across as "So wait, is this supposed to be realistic, tabletop rpg or JRPG or what?"
MaskyAtPublicComputer
@AidanAK47: That IS actually part of reason why I said GS' author isn't thinking it through with world building. See, I actually think world being gods' D&D campaign does actually explain lot of details about how things don't make sense and it does fit with GS being D&D inspired, but that is another example of how GS is inconsistent.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Perhaps not the strongest episode of honda-san, but the golden kamuy and Brazilian guy bit made up for it.
Lenlo
I might give it a watch after Kaze Fui finishes and write that up, just for you then.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The anime kind of feels a bit live actiony, which I know sounds confusing to hear, what I mean is the character designs.
Anonymous3060338
I'm very interested in doing a comparison between the anime adaptation and the live-action adaptation of Kaze ga once the series concludes next year just because these are two different mediums adapting the same novel. I would really like to know what they had to change or cut to get it down to 2 hours, compared to this two-cour series.
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Banana Fish – 18 [Islands in the Stream]

Ah Banana Fish, back in form this week. Ash and Eiji act like a married couple, Blanca show’s everyone whose boss and Yut continues to have no idea what’s going on. Lets jump in! On a general note Banana Fish is really picking back up. The Gang War/Hospital were easily the weakest part of the […]

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