Posted on 20 May 2009 with categories: Tsubasa Chronicle, Tsubasa Shunraiki



Okay, so I don’t know why I’m still blogging this show, even though I’m SO not the target audience. I really am a terrible manga reader: as an example, I’ve tried for a year now to get through the Bokura no, and even though it’s one very big heap of awesomeness, I’m still stuck around chapter 30. I’m not sure why it is, but I completely lack the dicipline for that.

In any case, this episode sure showed why the Tsubasa Manga has been rumoured to be so ridiculously complicated: the sakura we’ve seen thus far wasn’t the real Sakura, but simply a clone. A second Sakura (another clone) for some strange reason turns out to be inside the Japan country, but before she can do anything she gets kidnapped by the guy from the Piffle and Jade world.

At the moment, I really don’t take the Tsubasa series seriously anymore, mostly because I just have seen way too little of the real Syaoran to make up for all of the angst he seems to be going through. And on top of that, this only seems to be the beginning of the string of far-fetched plot twists that’s about to come. Though I do have to give this show credit where it’s due: this episode really looked awesome in terms of visuals, but most importantly, I really appreciate the GUTS of this show to kill off one of its main characters. Even though Sakura was instantly replaced by yet another clone, the two of them remain different characters. These experimental bits are things that I can appreciate in a way, but PLEASE: in the next OVA, make Sakura actually DO something. I had a bit of hope in the third episode of Tokyo Revelations, but it’s starting to get really dull to see her still in the role of damsel in distress. Especially with how ridiculously powerful fake Syaoran has become, I really hope that she’s going to something different other than sitting around waiting to be rescued or god-moding herself out of trouble.

My biggest fear right now is that xxxHolic is going to take over these ridiculously complicated plot twists from Tsubasa Chronicle, and this episode… well… came with a really weird revelation: Watanuki gave away his memory in return from the information of Fei Wong’s location. Oh god, I knew that it was strange that we’ve never heard of Watanuki’s parents, but to think that he was that involved with the story still baffles me a bit. I know that the xxxHolic anime stripped away all of the Tsubasa references (which was a good thing, IMO), but did he in the manga ever wonder why he couldn’t remember his parents’ names, or tell how he spent his childhood? And really, another thing I’m wondering: how the heck does a child like that know how to think so far ahead, predicting that years into the future there would be a point in which his alter ego would need to know the location of some evil overlord? Couldn’t he have done so at any point in time? Especially considering how the real Syaoran only managed to break free because of a whimsical action of one of Fei Wong’s servants, there would have been a pretty big chance for the guy to just waste away his memories that way. And another thing… wasn’t Syaoran locked inside of Fei Wong’s dimension? If he was conscious the entire time, then why didn’t he also know where he was?

I can only hope that the second episode of xxxHolic will be about xxxHolic, rather than it becoming a back-up manga for Tsubasa. I loved xxxHolic because of its unique take on modern folklore and the interesting topics it addressed, not for some kid who is going to help save the world from the evil Fei Wong.

Rating: (Enjoyable)
Lots of far-fetched plot twists with lots of pretty graphics. I have a lot to whine about this series, but somehow it remains compelling.

Posted on 18 March 2009 with categories: Tsubasa Chronicle, Tsubasa Shunraiki



Short Synopsis: The party returns to Kurogane’s homeland
Episode Rating: 6/10 (Disappointing)
Wait, wut? Did I miss something here? Did some sort of extra OVA get released half a year ago without me knowing anything about it or something? What the heck happened here… when the episode started airing, the characters were suddenly surrounded by Fye’s magic for God knows what kind of reason, Kurogane chops off his own arm from out of nowhere, they then somehow end up in Kurogane’s home country and Fye starts having flashbacks of things that never actually happened…

My best guess would be that the makers of the anime decided to screw the continuity and just went animating a random chapter that coincides with the current xxxHolic Shunmuki OVA. With the OVA format, it’s of course much easier to make the cross-overs between the two, but that’s no excuse for simply omitting an entire storyline here. I was really looking forward to seeing Fye meet the guy who was out to kill him, and here they just unceremoniously kill the guy off in a bunch of mere seconds.

So yeah, Tsubasa Chronicle is a complete mess in terms of continuity. Right now, it’s clear that Bee-Train wanted to go for its own storyline. While the second season may have been seen as a bunch of fillers, it was clearly building up to something that wasn’t in the manga’s continuity. My guess is that they knew that the manga wouldn’t have ended at the end of the third season, so they went with their own direction, which might have been a success or a complete flop, we’ll never know. In any case, Clamp didn’t like others messing with their storyline and wanted a faithful adaptation, so they turned to Production IG, who also made the xxxHolic TV-series. It’s of course understandable that they’d have to pick up at the last point where Bee-Train did follow through the manga, but I really hate how they basically went “screw the people who have only seen the anime, we’re here for the manga fans”. This mighty be an awesome episode for those who read the manga, but since I’ve never read it, I just find it lazy.

This episode did have plenty of interesting stuff, though. While the animation wasn’t as good as Tokyo Revelations, the xxxHolic crossovers were definitely interesting to see. My only fear with this is the role that Watanuki is going to play in it. Every character in Tsubasa Chronicle seems to be a superhuman fighting machine without any sense of pain (look at Kurogane cutting off his own arm without even flinching, or nobody being freaked out or startled by it, or how Syaoran got impaled multiple times through the heart and chest but seems to be completely fine), so I wonder what Watanuki really can do with all these superhumans around him without becoming a superhuman himself.

Posted on 20 March 2008 with categories: Tsubasa Chronicle, Tsubasa Tokyo Revelations


Well, I think that with the way this has turned out, I think that there’s a good chance for more OVAs of Tsubasa Chronicle to appear. I’m not going to write a full fledged review about this series, because I feel that my own bias is just too big, especially with the second episode. In any case, this episode was pretty good, even though it was much quieter than the last one.

In the end, my big gripe with Tokyo Revelation is that a lot of the character-development really came from nowhere. In this episode, it was Sakura’s turn to change dramatically, though I feel that the creators would so have profited from another episode, to get all of the developments right. Right now, I can understand how Sakura feels that she’s been incredibly irresponsible, and that she wants to change, but this doesn’t automatically make you able to be a fearless killing-machine, like she demonstrated in this episode.

One character whose character-development did get handled perfectly was Kurogane, though, and Fye too made very interesting progressions in this episode. I was also glad to see that finally the huge plot-twists of the previous episode made sense, and how the different characters of Kamui and his brother tied in with the overall story. The background art was also as lovely as usual, so there are no complaints there either.

Posted on 19 January 2008 with categories: Tsubasa Chronicle, Tsubasa Tokyo Revelations


Now this is more like it! This episode was much better than the first one. I still have a lot of problems with it, but at least the music has become much better. The amount of new plot-twists is also baffling. In one episode, the plot has been pushed forward as much as the original TV-series did in 52 episodes. Still, I don’t yet consider the Tsubasa Chronicle OVA to be better than the series.

That doesn’t mean that the series didn’t have its problems, though. What was Bee-Train thinking, putting such a dark story in the NHK-channel? I now also finally understand the reason why so many fillers were added. Bee-Train knew that there was no way to put some key-moments in this arc on the air, so they decided to just go with their own story and do what they were good at.

For me, the biggest problem with this episode is that it was really far-fetched. The battle underwater was already pushing my suspense of disbelief (how long can people hold in their breath anyway? And how can these guys flawlessly fight each other, just as easily as if they were on land), but that turned out to be just the tip of the ice-berg.

So, basically Syaoran was already as a kid a very talented magician. In there, he created a clone and gave this clone his eye. The task of this clone was to collect the feathers that would come out of Sakura in about ten years. In order to prepare for that, the clone-Syaoran got his eye sealed and moved to the clow-country where he made friends with Sakura, and later fell in love with her. For some reason beyond me, the original Syaoran was sealed away by Fei Wong, but he could see everything that the clone-Syaoran did.

To make things even more complicated, Syaoran is supposed to be a descendant of Clow Reed. Sakura is also the daughter of some king of the Clow-country, which gives us many hints that she too is a descendant of Clow Reed. It’s strange to think that I spent more than 52 episodes watching some very strange kind of incest-relationship… Also, Fei Wong turned out to be yet another descendant of Clow Reed, hinting that he’s either Syaoran’s father or some kind of uncle.

In any case, while clone-Syaoran is fighting under water, Fye jumps in and just starts using his magic from out of nowhere, even though he vowed not to use magic without his tattoo. Clone Syaoran then BITES the guy’s eye out, which turn out to be the source of his power. Strangely enough, Syaoran gains Fye’s powers by eating Fye’s eye. Syaoran’s powers, by the way, also increased greatly with this. Apparently, the seal on his eye was broken at this point (don’t ask me how or why), and now he’s strong enough to even pwn Kurogane.

In the meantime, the real Syaoran was helped by Xing-Huo (who was punished by Fei Wong afterwards (read: killed)), goes to Yuuko and is teleported to the Clone Syaoran. The two fight, but Clone-Syaoran is now much stronger than the real one due to Fye’s magic.

The feather turned out to be in the middle of a cocoon, in the middle of the pool. Apparently, this was the thing that kept the clean water flowing. Somehow, Sakura’s soul ended up in that cocoon. When Sakura’s body got near the cocoon, it disappeared, and I guess it ended up in the cocoon as well. She then prevents the real Syaoran from killing the clone-one. Clone Syaoran then cuts up yet another cocoon and the feather comes out. He gives it to Sakura and then walks off on his own, leaving her. Kamui, who I guess was unconscious for this time, magically reappears and pulls a person out of this cocoon. Apparently, this person was the reason why he was so protective of the water, and he’s glad that this person is okay. Seriously, the next episode has some real explanation to do, because both subplots need a lot of explanation to make sense to me. The more I think about it, the more questions I have. You can say a lot of Bee-Train, but at least they managed to make sure that everything in the tv-series made sense. Was the manga also so incredibly confusing at this point?

Oh, and there’s one character that I’ve really disliked in the new OVA: Sakura. Oh, how deep did she fall. First, she sleeps for more than an entire episode, then she wakes up, goes “Syaoran! Syaoran!”, gets overwhelmed by the new Syaoran, and falls asleep again. I seriously liked the lovable heroine from the TV-series much better.

Posted on 19 November 2007 with categories: Tsubasa Chronicle, Tsubasa Tokyo Revelations


Ah, finally! A year after the series ended, Tsubasa Chronicle gets continued. Let’s hope that the DVD-sales are high enough to give the creators enough motivation to animate the rest of the chapters of the manga.

Let me start with the bad points, though. First of all: the music. Let’s face it, it’s nothing when compared to the series. Yuki Kajiura made way for decent pop-tunes or recycled versions of the lesser tunes of the original series. The art style has also changed severely, and turned into a strange combination of the original one with xxxHolic, and its long limb. Mokona also has shrunk and Fye’s hair grew.

Another thing I didn’t like is how the creators just decided to ignore the fillers of the series, and just continued after the library-arc. It’s a shame, because while the fillers didn’t really progress the story, they did flesh out and develop the different characters a bit. The result is the most noticeable with Sakura: she turned from a growing heroine back into her useless old self who keeps sleeping.

One thing that’s more personal is how it took me a long time to get used to the fact that this series isn’t done by Bee-Train anymore. There’s no overabundance of still shots to build up atmosphere, the dialogue is kept short and to the point, there are no insert-songs and there’s a much larger attention to the different action-scenes.

And really… Shaoran must be some kind of machine or something. He basically stands for minutes at the same spot with an arrow in his leg without even flinching. I mean, doesn’t such a thing usually hurt? In this episode, the Shaoran-lookalike also awakes, though unfortunately I’ve already been spoiled about his true identity, which took away a bit of the surprise.

Okay, those were the flaws. Apart from that, I enjoyed this episode quite a bit. The world of Tokyo (wasn’t that were Kurogane grew up as well?) is totally opposite of what I expected it to be, and I like the idea of acidic rain, spoiling all of the water. I’m interested in how the people who live outside of the two towers get their water, if both sides refuse to give them any. Especially if the rain has been pouring down for fifteen years now. The character-animation may also be a bit buggy at times, but especially the background art is terrific, and they blend really well together.

The best part of the episode was the conversation between Kurogane and Fye, though, because finally Fye gets a bit of depth to his character. It really seems that he can’t just stop putting up his facade, even if he wanted to.

Of course, this was just the introductions, and something tells me that the best parts of this arc haven’t even started yet. I predict that my complaints for the next episode will only be 25% of the ones I had for this episode, because it’ll be easier to get used to the new art-style. In any case, I do like how the creators kept the long limbs into the character-designs, because that’s what I originally liked about them. Next episode will be up in January, and I’m looking forward to it!

Posted on 12 June 2007 with categories: Tsubasa Chronicle

Great news! It seems that my speculations about there not being a continuation of Tsubasa Chronicle were wrong. According to this site, a Tsubasa Chronicle OVA has been announced! The animation studio to handle it is still unknown at this point.

It’ll be interesting to see how this develops in the future. Obviously, an OVA won’t be enough to finish the story, as from the things I heard, the manga goes on for much longer. Still, this does show that CLAMP doesn’t give up after its debacle with Bee-Train. Perhaps we can expect more OVAs in the future, or perhaps even a third season.

Posted on 28 November 2006 with categories: Tsubasa Chronicle

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And with this, the second season of Tsubasa Chronicle has ended. All that’s left now is to look forward to April, in which its third and final season will air. Fei Wong also had some interesting reasons for being involved in this arc. Because of Dhaos’ huge powers, they were able to locate Sakura and Syaoran again. If they could take this power, they’d be able to control Syaoran’s journey again. Chaos himself ended up being indeed a cluster of feathers, who developed a mind of their own. He indeed possessed a huge amount of feathers, meaning that the ones he fed Sakura were specifically created for that purpose.

There were a few strange things about this episode. Some things I didn’t expect. First of all, when Dhaos disappeared and turned back into the feathers, they actually scattered, instead of returning to Sakura. Only one feather found its way back to her, which also explains where Dhaos got his inspirations for the fake memories he created.

I also actually expected Fei Wong’s plan to succeed in the end. After all, then he’d get back in the picture again. I’m suspecting that he’s going to succeed somewhere in the third season. In any case, once he does, the fillers will be entirely over.

[EDIT]Okay, there isn’t going to be a third season, unfortunately. If a third season was planned somehow, then it would already have been announced.

Posted on 6 November 2006 with categories: Tsubasa Chronicle

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Ah, fake feathers. That explains a lot. Chaos has his own feathers, which are much weaker than Sakura’s ones, but work in about the same way. When you combine a lot of these feathers, you do collect a considerable amount of power, and that was what Fei Wong is after. It also explains why this arc, even though not part of the manga, seriously disrupted the feather count, the reason Chaos went to travel to the Clow Country, as it never happened and why Chaos’ feathers coincidentally appeared to contain his memories. Still, it does not explain why he fell in love with Sakura. I think he fell in love with her because they’re both beings with a huge power.

Okay, only one episode’s left in this series, and the creators couldn’t have found a more fitting climax. Even though Chaos is proved not to posses the powers, equal to that of a god, he still has frozen both Sakura’s body and soul. I also loved Wei Fong’s role in this episode. It’s not yet clear what exactly he’s trying to do, but it’s great to see him get in action for once. The next episode should prove to be worthwhile. And after that, it’s waiting till April for the third season!

Posted on with categories: Tsubasa Chronicle

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The episode started with the conclusion of the first battle against Chaos, which most obviously turned out rather bad for Syaoran and his companions. The rest of the episode was an intermezzo. Does that make the episode less awesome than usual? Of course not!

The identity of the bird/powerful entity also gets known: Chaos. He played both as bird, and he is someone who can travel through dimensions at will, and that’s why Fei Wong was behind him. The question then remains: which form is his true form? Is he really a bird who can take the form of a human, or is he a human who can take the form of a bird? Also, how did he get his feathers?

Another interesting question: when you travel through worlds, do you travel through time as well? Chaos case actually suggests this. He got his feathers after Sakura lost them, but he actually visited Sakura in her country, long before she lost them. Another possibility is that, while each country has its own timeline, there is always one time known as the present, and feathers are the only known things who can break through this cycle.

Anyway, Sakura and Syaoran were as cute as ever. For the first time ever, Syaoran is getting selfish, while Fay cheats a bit and uses magic and Kurogane gives him support, even though he doesn’t like it. It’s indeed a nice way to end the second third of the series. I’m also wondering whether the finale will consist out of only one, or two episodes.

Posted on 3 November 2006 with categories: Tsubasa Chronicle

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Seriously, this was such an excellent episode. Thank goodness Chaos turned out differently from the subtle love rival. In fact, he wasn’t subtle at all during this episode. Apart from that, there was lots of more goodness, both from Sakura, Syaoran, Fay and Kurogane, as this episode delves a bit into the past of each of them. Definitely awesomely executed.

So, here’s the case: Chaos ran into Sakura when she was young, when he sought an audience with the king of Clow as the king of his world. At that time, he promised Sakura to accompany her in her travels some day, when she was allowed to travel. Apparently, over the years, this promise turned into an obsession. Like I said, he wasn’t very subtle in this. When he confronted Sakura with the truth, he just assumed that Sakura felt the same way about the matters as he did, and would go with him no matter what.

Syaoran, Fay and Kurogane, meanwhile, are confronted with a bit of illusion magic, which takes the form of a person, dear to them. In Syaoran’s case, it’s Seishiro. I think we’ve seen him at the end of the first season. Though his case is the least interesting of the three. Kurogane meets up with his father again while Fay actually sees King Ashura. Both their reactions were so awesome, and the background music really gave a helping hand in these scenes. ^_^

Well then, when Sakura refuses, Chaos reveals that all this is his doing. He calls Syaoran, Fay and Kurogane back, in order to show Sakura how powerless the three of them are, and thus how pointless it is to continue travelling with the three of them. And he actually takes out both Fay and Kurogane. Something that doesn’t happen often. Especially the cliff-hanger was very, very powerful.

Then, there’s also the case of Wei Fong. Apparently, they’ve located a huge source of power. At first, I thought it was the bird, though when Xing Huo (apparently Fei Wong’s assistant’s name) enters the world in person, she actually heads for a strange tower, instead of the bird’s liar. Furthermore, they also don’t know that Syaoran and Sakura are in that very world, do they? The question then also remains whether this bird actually exists or not. It could be a creation of Chaos, in order to trick Sakura and find a good excuse for Syaoran to be busy for a couple of hours. After all, Mokona never felt the huge amount of feathers on the bird. Rather strange, don’t you think?

I’m seeing a lot of people get turned off by the second season because of the huge amount of ‘pointless fillers’. But these fillers are actually far from pointless. They dedicate a great deal of time in fleshing out our main characters. In fact, I actually think that the entire second season of Tsubasa Chronicle was dedicated for fleshing out its characters. Wei Fong was put out of the picture for a while because of Yuuko’s work, and because of this, Syaoran and the others were free to choose the worlds they could travel to.

During these travels, each of the members of the main cast changed. Especially Sakura got a lot of attention, as she changed from the girl who couldn’t do anything to a girl who can make her own decisions, and think for herself. Fay changed in a more subtle way. He’s actually getting more involved with Sakura and Syaoran, and I actually think that he’s slowly beginning to show things of his real self. Kurogane got a full arc dedicated to his past, fully explaining the way he lived, and why he lived the way he did. Syaoran changed more subtly, though I could swear that he’s more talkative than that he was at the beginning of the series. And Mokona also showed his worth, in the couple of episodes in which the fate of our protagonists rested on his… erm… paws.

The fact also remains that there’s quite an amount of manga-material left in order to fill the third series. I’ve never read anything of the manga, so I’m not exactly sure, but things would have to move very strange if the third season would follow the same format of the second season. From the few things I’ve read, the manga is actually nearing its closure, which means that with a bit of luck, it’ll be over when the third season starts. This means that if all the second season has been doing is building up for the third season, the third season will probably be awesome, from beginning to end.

I SO hope I’m right, as this series is too awesome to ruin.

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  • Emma
    (Friday, Nov 21. 2014 01:06 AM)
    @Bam: Its a film that may very well work better on a second watch.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Nov 21. 2014 01:05 AM)
    @Bam: I already gave my feedback on the film but left out the bit about the sound direction which yes was too loud but also ham-fisted and overbearing. One thing I also forgot to mention was for all the complaints one can make about Mconaughey he has come a long way as an actor.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Nov 21. 2014 12:16 AM)
    Some of the effects were simply amazing and the pseudo theoretical physics was well-implemented into the film. The long running time was necessary but it could’ve definitely been better edited to cut out some of the fluff or the extra-long scenes. All-in-all a great endeavor. It really borrows liberally from the 2001: A Space Odyssey handbook, but given that Nolan admits his admiration of that film I’ll let it slide.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Nov 21. 2014 12:10 AM)
    Also the controversy over the sound mixing is not all unfounded. You just can’t have the music swell up to the point of not hearing the fucking dialogue.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Nov 21. 2014 12:08 AM)
    I can’t imagine any actor other than McConaughey playing the role of Cooper and giving him as much depth as he did. He was well casted for the role, but he still has to tone down some of that McConaughey shit before he becomes a parody of himself. We all know he is prone to doing the same exact role for a while so it’ll be sad if he type-casts himself as Rustin Cohle in every single goddamn film from now on.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Nov 21. 2014 12:02 AM)
    Ok I saw Interstellar on the IMAX screen with the d-box and it was quite a treat. I stand by my statement that it’s really just a big-budget Hollywood blockbuster, but that doesn’t mean it didn’t have some heart. The ‘love transcends all’ nuance was a bit ham-fisted tho. And seriously you gonna name the character that symbolises the folly of man as Mann? C’mon Nolan.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Nov 20. 2014 11:57 PM)
    @Aidan: hit-and-run marketing strategy apparently.
  • ninjarealist
    (Thursday, Nov 20. 2014 11:19 PM)
    @AidanAK47 His link isn’t even direct to the indiegogo page. I would be offended but I’m mostly just feel sorry for how much effort this guy has clearly put into his project and how misguided it seems. I’m impressed by the effort, but the writing looks beyond terrible. I hope things turn out ok for the creator.
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Nov 20. 2014 10:05 PM)
    Don’t you just love it when some stranger just comes in, tells you to advertise for them and leaves before you even have a chance to reply whether or not you would do it?
    …Really motivates you to help…
  • petra
    (Thursday, Nov 20. 2014 02:54 PM)
    Hi there! Because you are in to try something new ;), Could it be possible to post our Indiegogo campaign (live now!) link on your blog? We give a new dimension to anime and we thought would be interesting to your fans :) Thx in advance!!https://www.indiegogo.com/explore?utf8=✓&filter_title=devil%27s+legacy

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

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

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Pokemon: The Origin Review – 75/100

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

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Tamayura – More Aggressive Review – 75/100

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

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Silver Spoon Review – 86/100

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

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

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

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Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet Review – 81/100

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