Posted on 2 October 2008 with categories: Anime Reviews, Himitsu ~The Revelation~


This is probably going to be the most difficult review of the past month for me. First of all, it’s always difficult to review your favourite series without delving into plain rambling, but this also isn’t a case where I just sum up the points I loved about it and get things over with. Himitsu is a series with a lot of weaknesses, and yet after Kaiba, it stood out for me as the best series of the past half year.

Let me first get these weaknesses out of the way. Himitsu is basically a crime series, where the main characters try to find the culprit of a crime by looking into the mind of the victims. Its biggest mistake is that can be a bit over-theatrical at times. Its got an excellent soundtrack that can however sound a bit too cheesy when put into practice, and it’s got those nasty tendencies of showing some strange instances of fanservice for the fangirls (why this is considered to be worse than blasphemy, while female fanservice is always praised, I don’t know).

Then there are the issues with the series’ messages. Because it involves policemen who look inside the brains, you’d expect a lot of ethical debates. A series that makes you think about whether or not it’s right to look into the privacy of a deceased. This however, doesn’t turn out to be the case: Himitsu merely just lists a large number of taboos that even Sayonara Zetsubou-Sensei didn’t dare to touch, and presents its own views about them, but it doesn’t try to spark any discussion.

So, despite all this, why did I like this series so much? Well, first of all: it just is an excellent mystery-series. Every case keeps you guessing what’s going on. Because in the series, the memory-recovery system is a very advanced technology, people often need to wait a couple of hours before a new piece of the victim’s brains are loaded in the computer. This series is a master in timing its revelations, and keeping the viewer busy and wondering what’s going on.

This also is a very inconsistent series, for the good and the bad. If you liked one case, you can be sure that the next case is going to focus on something completely different. This isn’t exactly good for your expectations, but at the same time it makes the series extremely unpredictable: you’re never going to know what’s going to happen next. You’ll never know what the next episode will focus on. Every episode is different, and focuses on something else, and this makes for a very varied episodic series.
This series is also excellent in the few times it delves into horror. If you thought that Code Geass was shocking, just wait until you see a few particular episodes of this series. Madhouse has always been a production studio with very little censorship, and this series ranks along with Shigurui to their least censored series, making for a few gruesome cases that pop up once in a while and take you by surprise.

And then the characters. They really are a case on their own. For a long time, you’ll be wondering what the series is planning to do with them. Because this is a series that focus mostly on the people that are involved with the case, the actual main characters, the investigating policemen, at first sight seem to be neglected a bit. But as it turns out, the creators knew exactly what they were doing with their characters. Because they moved away from the manga this series is based on, they were able to plan this series exactly for the length of 26 episodes, and they’ve been fleshing out the main cast very subtly throughout the series.

The result is that the cast of this series comes together wonderfully in the final quarter of this series. All of them are developed very subtly, and each of them becomes memorable somehow, and overall they become a lot of fun to watch as they try to solve their cases. The finale of this series forms an excellent conclusion for this series, where this development is used to its full extent.

In terms of graphics, a lot of people may disagree with me, but I absolutely loved them. Madhouse has always had the reputation of straying away from the overly moe or GAR character-designs, and it’s the same here. The character-designs look excellent, and never seem to be trying to be overly cute. Overall, this is one series where the foreground characters and background art really mesh excellently with each other, making sure for some awesome shots.

Overall, it’s really a shame that the subs stopped right before the best episode of the entire series, and Himitsu has definitely been the most underrated series from the spring-season for me. It can be surprisingly intense at times, while surprisingly touching at others, fully tying in with the “fooling the viewer”-theme of the past half year that I’ve mentioned a few times already. It knows very much how to tell a story, got an awesome set of main characters and definitely turned into my favourite series after Kaiba ended.

Storytelling: 10/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 9/10
Setting: 9/10
Posted on with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~



Short Synopsis: Maki rushes in to find the hidden pieces of Suzuki’s memory.
Highlights: A bit over-exaggerated, but an incredibly tense ending.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,5/10
Okay, so this episode loses points for over-exaggerating a bit too much, but thankfully it turned into that over-the-top ending that I’d hoped for. In the end, it didn’t beat RD’s ending, but it really took second place. If it had a bit more subtlety, this episode really could have been incredible, but that field of flowers really was a bit too much. The hypnotism also was unrealistic, and the episode’s end was a bit too theatrical for its own good (why didn’t the MRI explode the way it did when Suzuki shoot it?).

But really, that climax between Aoki and Maki was SO intense that it made up for everything. Now everything really is clear: Kainuma’s final plan wasn’t to just proclaim his love for Maki and go for just the shock factor. He wanted to shock the guy, and then hypnotize him into murdering the entire of Daiku. Because Suzuki saw it, he went berserk instead.

The final bad guy? Daiku’s boss. It turns out that he’s been trading people’s memories for money. Now he’s had enough and wants to close it off by having Daiku kill off each other. He probably sealed Suzuki’s memory of Kainuma, because that’d be the perfect way to time their deaths. Unfortunately, this went wrong because Aoki realized in time that Kainuma was trying to hypnotize them.

Posted on 24 September 2008 with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~



Short Synopsis: Someone is trying to get rid of Daiku, and uses some very extreme measures to get his way.
Highlights: Awesome set-up for a finale!
Overall Enjoyment Value: 9/10
Ah, okay. This and the next episode may have different titles, but they turn out to be the two halves of one big arc that is going to be the finale of this series. But really, it’s promising to be an awesome finale, and with this, we can really see the power of the decision for this series to go into a different path than the manga: because of that, the creators could plan exactly what they want to place when and where, and thus they have managed to save the perfect story to close off this series. I’m really excited, seeing how this series is about to avoid the number one mistake made with manga- and novel-adaptations: the fact that the length of the manga and anime don’t match. Seriously, more series should do this, instead of creating an artificial ending that was pasted together in the last minute.

In any case, what happened in this episode: Maki turned out to have a heart-attack, but he managed to restore quite quickly, although a next attack would be fatal to him. In the meantime, someone has put some sort of virus in the main computer of Daiku, causing Kainuma’s face to pop up like it did in the previous episode, which points to the fact that a certain someone who knows about Maki and Kainuma is trying to get rid of Daiku. The main chief is also getting followed by someone.

Maki also discovered that a certain piece of Suzuki’s memory has been erased by someone. It is revealed that Michiru looked up to Onogida and that’s why she ended up joining Daiku. Onogida then DIES afterwards, and Maki is also nearly killed by a mystery attacker! Talk about plot twists!

Oh, to think that the creators had no intention to stop the massacre. It does make sense, though: what better time to attack Daiku when the members are already confused by the death of one of their comrades? But what bugs me the most is that missing piece of memory of Suzuki: that means that he saw something inside of Kainuma’s brains that was even MORE SCREWED UP than kissing his dead victims while scraping off their skin while proclaiming his love for Maki. Bloody hell!?

I’m not sure what exactly it is, but I’m very cynical about this season’s endings. I hardly look forward to any of them, and most of them just seem destined for a straightforward and predictable ending, but for Himitsu I’m willing to make an exception. The finale of this series has so far been downright excellent, and there are no signs at all that this series won’t finish with a huge climax. This is exactly what I look for in a good climax!

Posted on 18 September 2008 with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~



Short Synopsis: There is NO WAY I’m going to spoil this episode in front of the blog aggregators. MAJOR SPOILERS BELOW. READ AT OWN RISK!
Highlights: Why did I ever say that this series was bad at characterization?!
Overall Enjoyment Value: 9/10
That was one AWESOME episode. It really fitted for a finale, it packed a punch, and it wasn’t afraid to go for the worst-case scenario. After the previous episode, I really expected the creators to find some way to revive Amachi. Guess what? She actually didn’t make it! She’d goddanmed died!

Basically, what happened is the following: after Amachi saw the extra set of footage that got saved from the victim’s brains, she went to investigate on the research facility of that woman that came to claim the body. That’s the reason why she was captured and her brains taken away from her. It turns out that the woman had a personal vendetta against Daiku, and that’s why she brought back the brain, in order to lure more Daiku members who’d come rushing in to save her.

Which Aoki does, of course. She captures him, but she didn’t take into account that the rest of Daiku would also chase after Aoki, and after that, her practices of human experimentation are brought down quite quickly, so she kills herself and destroys her brains. Amachi, unfortunately, had already died. Her body stayed away from her brains for too long. The thing is that when Aoki got captured, she actually was still alive! The two of them shared a dream, if I recall correctly.

I’m really impressed by how this series turned out. At first, it may seem like a strange idea to just go with anime-original stories, instead of keeping to the manga, but in this way, the creators were able to plan EXACTLY the sufficient airtime for each character, so that each one of them got enough attention. The result is an absolutely awesome cast in the end, even though there were enough times where I lost faith in this series.

And I’m really curious: what the heck did the creators have planned for the final two episodes? The first one will be another aftermath to the Kainuma-case, but what is the second going to be? Ooh, so many possibilities!

Posted on 15 September 2008 with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~



Short Synopsis: Two dead bodies are found at a love hotel.
Highlights: SEARCH MY BODY
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,75/10
OMG!

Now THIS is what I’m talking about! THIS is exactly why I like this series so much!

Himitsu’s multi-episode arcs have always known exactly how to use their time, rather than dragging on endlessly, they’re focused and try to tell a story that would be impossible to tell in only one episode. Some focus on complex stories, like the one with the biological weapon, others focused on politics, like the case with the murderous girl who killed her family, and others were downright shocking, like the one about the bald mass murderer that caused Maki to shoot Suzuki.

This arc seems to go for both the shock and the complex story. It starts out simple enough, when two dead bodies are found at a love hotel. It seems that one of them committed suicide, but his girlfriend also turns out to have been pregnant. Then however, a high-placed person of a hospital comes to claim the body. Amachi resists, but fails. Only a few days later, her BRAINS pop up in a container, with the note “SEARCH MY BODY”. I think that this is the first time were any main character had his/her HEAD SLICED OPEN like this…

If I had to guess, then the doctor wanted to prevent Amachi from finding out too much, but that doesn’t explain at all why she left Amachi’s brain right in front of Daiku, nor the “Search my body”-note. Also, what was the significance of those numbers that were written on the babies’ feet, in the memory of the guy who committed suicide?

In any case, this episode was just awesome, as it also provided for a lot of new insights into the characters. The characters in this series are already excellent, and this series is still fleshing them out, which only is a good thing. I really wonder whether Amachi is able to return, because Maki did say that her body may still be alive. Who knows, perhaps in this age, there’s some sort of technique that can separate people from their brains without killing them? Still, we have to wait for that until the next episode, I guess.

There’s also one thing I noticed, while looking at the list of episode titles: the final two episodes of this series are going to be standalone stories! In a way, it’s very much possible for the next episode to contain the dramatic climax for this series, only for it to finish with two shorter stories. I personally LOVE these kinds of endings: they’re so much better and less predictable than the “the bad guy dies”-endings. A lot my favourite endings are actually episodic, rather than those with a continuous storyline. Series as The Third, Night Head Genesis, and in a way Bokura no too, they all finished with an episodic final episode or final two episodes, and their endings have become some of the most memorable endings for me. In a way, it does make sense, because it’s much harder to plan everything right in a final episode if you’re going with a continuous storyline, and it’s very easy to rush things, or just finish things with a predictable blow. Some endings of series that I did love, despite their continuous storylines: Haibane Renmei, Crystal Blaze and Revolutionary Girl Utena.

Posted on 5 September 2008 with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~




Short Synopsis: The members of Daiku have a day off when a rather urgent case pops up.
Highlights: Just about everything in this episode!
Overall Enjoyment Value: 9/10
What an awesome episode! Really, I can’t believe that in the end, this series is coming together wonderfully. Seriously, it feels like this series has only just started for real after the biologica-weapon arc. It really feels like the cast’s introduction finished there. The past two episodes have that hard to describe feeling, where you really feel the chemistry between the different characters. If that makes any sense. It’s that very vague point that the characters reach, when they just feel like normal people, instead of two-dimensional ones.

I must really say that the creators have a very interesting way of fleshing out their characters. It’s very strange, I first labelled it as bad characterization, but as it turns out, this series has shown us many sides of the Daiku team. This episode fleshed them out even more, by showing how the Daiku members are on their days off. You really see different sides of them, than when you compare them in their business suits.

And the new character who kept bugging to join Daiku was hilarious, especially after the way he got pwned by Maki like that. But then again, just about every scene in this episode stood out in some way. From the light-hearted moments, to the amusement-park bombing that turned out to be just a simple fireworks show. I’m probably just rambling here (which usually happens when I run into a series I really, really like), and this episode definitely isn’t the easiest to explain why it’s so awesome. I think that it’s one of these episodes that has the x-factor.

I’m really curious: are there still people apart from myself that are watching this series? It really feels like everyone seems to have given up on it, either after the first episode with its gay undertones, or after the subs stalled. It’s a real shame: out of all the episodes the creators could have chosen, they stopped right before the best episode of the entire series.

Also, it’s strange, but I’m starting to really like Madhouse’s sense of visuals, especially in this series, even though the graphics budget is incredibly small. It’s the way that the creators use their filters and lighting-effects, along with the down-to-earth character-designs (no girls with hair in rainbow-colours = win). A great example is the gorgeous shot with the fireworks.

Overall, there were often times where I lost faith in this series, but now that it’s finally coming together, I’m confident that after Kaiba, Himitsu is my favourite series of the past spring-season.

Posted on 27 August 2008 with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~



Short Synopsis: A previously unmentioned Daiku-member is found dead.
Highlights: Finally the cast in this series feels complete!
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,5/10
Oh boy, they should have done this episode much sooner. It’s strange, but it finally feels that the cast has been introduced, and that with only three more episodes to go! With this episode, we learned a bit more about the final member who always remained in the shadows a bit (the red-haired woman whose name I forgot), and strangely enough, the cast also felt very complete with this episode. Screw the statement that this series isn’t good at characterizations. Sure, the characters don’t develop nearly as much as with other series, but at least with this episode, they’re fleshed out well.

I can’t believe that it took me this long to notice, but even though this is an incredibly inconsistent series, there have been two major themes throughout the episode: the first is the obvious Suzuki-storyline, and the second is a theme that you hardly get to see in anime in this form: the relationship with your wife that actually isn’t overblown. It’s one very realistic aspect in this series: each member of Daiku has his or her own love-life that doesn’t have anything to do with their job (apart from Aoki and Maki, perhaps. Ironically, still single).

But this episode did convince me: a second season for this series would rock, and the creators still have so much more to play with. Unfortunately, this is Madhouse we’re talking about. They nearly always go for new premises, instead of continuing old ones. And in a way, in the long run I like this approach better. Okay, it does leave a number of unfinished stories that way, but the other extreme is just as bad: just continue to make series of premises that already exist and which you know will rake in cash (like what Sunrise is doing right now, or even more blatantly, those recently introduced Haruhi spin-offs). The gaming-industry is currently showing what happens when such a mentality gets taken to the extreme: only sequels and hardly anything original. In the end, I do prefer the variety, so I can understand it if Madhouse would just end this series with a bang and then move on to other fresh premises.

Posted on 20 August 2008 with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~



Short Synopsis: Aoki tries to catch the culprit of this arc’s crime red-handed.
Highlights: A solid conclusion.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10
This arc really took its time to tell its story, and it worked out pretty well. The thing I liked about this arc wasn’t the characterizations or the intensity that some of the other arcs of Himitsu showed, but rather the complexity of its storyline. The previous episodes showed lots of question-marks, and this episode answered them very nicely, even though I had trouble as usual, trying to understand those elaborate dialogues. ^^;

So in the end, it was indeed the bald guy with the hat. The first incident on the train wasn’t because of him, but a girl he really liked was assaulted by a knife. When he tried to stop it, the girl got stabbed, and a bottle that contained the disease got slashed open, spreading the disease through the various people on the train. The following murderers were him, trying to erase the evidence. I didn’t like it when the characters started talking Chinese, though. It was already hard enough for me to grasp what that dialogue was about without some Japanized Chinese translated in Kanji…

I also liked how this episode addressed the sardine-can syndrome of the Japanese trains and subways. They are notorious for how nobody ever seems to talk there, and when such a major incident happens as someone getting threatened with a knife or something, most of them try to ignore it, instead of trying to do something to resolve it.

Then there’s that idiot Aoki. As it turns out, he never kissed and got himself infected, but he just made his fingernails look like they were infected. He did jump right in front of a train in order to save the culprit, though, in a desperate attempt to save Miyoshi from her disease. In the end, there was a romantic tension between the two, but Aoki reminded Miyoshi too much of Suzuki. That doesn’t really work when he wants to get a relation with her to make her forget about the guy.

I think I also finally get why this series feels weird at times, and I can’t seem to fully enjoy it like I did when it first started. I first thought that it was because of bad characterization, but that’s not quite right: even in the first half, this show has seen some great cases. The thing with this series is that it’s incredibly inconsistent: one episode focuses at characterization, while the next focuses on mystery, then the next one is all about horror, then there’s one that aims to disturb, then there’s a thought-provoking one, et cetera. The things that made a previous episode great aren’t the focus of the following. The best example of it is episode eight: possibly the best episode of the entire series because it was so bloody disturbing, but it also caused me to expect the same of the rest of the series.

In other words: this series is incredibly unpredictable: you’ll never know what an episode will be about. It’s both so in the good ways and the bad ways. On one hand, those bloody expectations don’t always cooperate you expect tension but instead get a fairly quiet episode that aims to be more thought-provoking, et cetera. On the other hand, it does show great writing to be so incredibly versatile with this series. It’s a bit of a double-edged sword, that’ll probably cause Himitsu to never really make it to my favourites, but it’s a great series nonetheless.

Posted on 12 August 2008 with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~



Short Synopsis: Whoa! The train-massacre-arc is going to take up three episodes!
Highlights: Talk about a change in plot-direction.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8,5/10
Ah, so that’s what it was! The previous episode was supposed to be a huge question mark, only for this episode to shed light on what happened back there. The big twist: this arc is dealing with bio-terrorism: all the passengers in the train were somehow infected with a disease that first shows up on your fingernails. THAT’s why the killer looked at the fingernails of his victims, and THAT’s why the same symptoms showed up at Miyoshi: she’d been sleeping alongside these dead bodies (no, really) and carelessly caught the disease.

And I also knew something was fishy: Miyoshi and Suzuki used to date together, and Maki killed Miyoshi’s lover. There seems to be more than that, though. This episode did show a time where both of them were having a fight. And that Aoki: in this episode he actually tried to hit on (and kiss) her. That idiot caught the disease that way as well. I didn’t quite catch why he did such a thing, but we’ll probably learn that in the next episode.

I remember once noting that this series wasn’t good at characterizations. And yet I was shocked when Aoki revealed his fingernails. And at the same time, Aoki sure changed a lot in this episode, and became much more mature. I feel like this arc was really meant to show how his experiences with the MRI have influenced him, and he’s much more confident now than he was in the first half of this series. I think the first sign of this we saw was in the “don’t reach for that neck”-episode, where he just cut off the head of the dead guy.

I originally thought that it would be best for this series to keep to short arcs, and yet at the same time this is the longest arc of this series yet and it’s looking very promising. I’m really interested to how the creators plan to end this series, and this episode showed me that the best way to end was with a long arc, like this one. This is no Jigoku Shoujo, and for most of the time, it really needs its time to build up, it seems. The surprises worked great in the first half when the concept was still fresh (as shown by episode eight which STILL NEEDS TO GET SUBBED), but when talking about the second half, by far the best stories have been those that had two episodes.

Let’s see whether the next episode can surpass episode thirteen.

Posted on 5 August 2008 with categories: Himitsu ~The Revelation~



Short Synopsis: This case is divided over two episodes, and it’s about a serial murderer who has been killing people near train tracks.
Highlights: A new interesting character from Maki’s past.
Overall Enjoyment Value:8/10
Hmm, let’s see what this two-episode arc can deliver for this series. It’s been a strange episode so far, and I’m having a bit of trouble understanding it. At first sight, it seems like a simple case: a guy kills someone on the train and then kills all eye-witnesses. But then the episode pulls out all sorts of weird stuff like the culprit looking at fingernails and an old acquaintance of Maki. Seriously, this episode kept changing focus: you first thing it’s about a high school getting murdered, then it’s about Aoki’s wedding, then it’s about the serial murderer, then the stabbing on the train… Plus… there were much more people on that train who watched it, and the killer suddenly disappears and a bald young man with a hat shows up.

This episode was surprisingly more complex than it appeared at first… if I understood correctly, Miyoshi (Maki’s old friend) is the head of the autopsy department and she often sleeps right next to the corpses. Somehow, her fingers are related to the case… At one point, she also mistook Aoki for the real culprit of the case, but why would she think that the culprit would visit her at the police, of all places? Does that mean that she’s related to the case or something?

Especially the last of the episode has me puzzled… her fingers seem to be the same as the ones, seen from the brains of one of the victims, but what would that have to do with anything? Then at the same time, the guy who committed the first murder shows up dead in a train cabin, having killed himself.

Argh, I need to watch that next episode in order to get what the heck is going on here… my money right now is on the bald guy with the hat being the culprit, but don’t ask me why.

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AidanAK47
Who was it again bemoaning that we don't get enough original(Not adaption) anime anymore? Cause there are 20 original shows next season. Great for anime but hard for me cause what am I gonna write in the preview?
AidanAK47
I am a bit too stubborn to burnout.
@afgm, I didn't change a thing.
Anonymous38539
I hope AidanAK47 would not suffer an Anime Burnout. I love this site and it pains to think that one day, no one will be writing the seasonal previews and yearly summary.
afgm
@AidanAK47 did you change my site status? K-off did that on purpose to help out lol
SuperMario
@Aidan: you have 91 days's episode as 9 instead of 7
AidanAK47
Bloody hell, even the spambots are referencing Pokemon Go now.
K-Off
For future reference, let's direct admin dialogue to email, apart from direct feedback.
@Mario We're working on allowing users to set up accounts.
SuperMario
And the constant anonymous names just keep bugging me. Can we make it back to the old shoutbox, where you have to put down your name in order to write message?
SuperMario
I think it's one thing leads to another. he's getting too burnout that he doesn't know what to write anymore.
AidanAK47
@Anon36049, pretty much what he said. Though it seems to be a combination of anime burnout and writers block.
Anonymous36271
He suffered from anime burnout and is getting on with real life.
Anonymous36049
Hi guys I havent been around for a long time. Does anyone know what happened to psgels? I see that the new posts are not his.
AidanAK47
Disgaea 2 coming to steam. Sweet.
Gotta finish Disgaea 1 and hope they don't screw up the port on release day again.
AidanAK47
Illuminati are everywhere, regardless of wherther it's anime or not. Sword Art Online was the work of the illuminati. All in the name of the gaint magic eyeball triange god do they rule the landscape of entertainment medium.
Also Magic Eyeball-kun also argees that Rem is best girl. And none shall dare denounce that claim.
SuperMario
@Anony35181: never thought they're that much interested in anime thou
Anonymous35181
@supermario, illuminati confirmed
SuperMario
Is it just me or couple of messages from the shoutbox just gone missing?
Topgavin
Haven't been watching it myself, but apparently in Taboo Tattoo, that large-chested high school girl died while running *onto a live battlefield* to check on her boyfriend with a shirt that said "flag". 10/10
K-Off
@afgm Sent you a message.
@Friend Looks good, I'd be interested in seeing multiple witches as well.
Anonymous32745
Chemotherapy is a cause of cancer rather than a cure.
Anonymous32745
If you know someone dying of cancer, immediately inform them that allopathic medicine will kill them and turn them to natural remedies which often work.
Anonymous32745
"Medicine and science are powerfully institutionalized, but no institution or profession has existed for the purpose of encouraging people to act reasonably." - Ray Peat
afgm
.
afgm
@Friend: yeah it's a problem
@Koff: I emailed you a while back. did you get it?
Fri3nd
Huh, I can't use my username.
@Bam You're right, I'll work on it.
Bam
@K-off: It's moments like these that really remind you of mortality. People pull thru tho. medical science has come far in that field; but definitely not far enough.
Bam
@Friend: It's looks pretty good. I like Mario's suggestion of a series of witches, but a solitary one is more in-tune with the current banner. I would say however that there is too much dark in the negative space to the right. Could be just me tho.
Bam
@Kaiser: a series of consecutive 'yes'. I was really into Laloux, but FP is the one I liked the most. I've been watching Mr. Robot since season 1, and it's well worth your time. Not really all that cyberpunkish tho; mostly just cyber. And anybody who hasn't read Gibson's masterpiece is a fool of a Took.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Bam: Have you been looking into that Mr Robot series? I heard its meant to be some kind of cyber thriller, it could be our thing. Also have you read Neuromancer?
Kaiser Eoghan
And I suppose that brings me to that stranger things show then, I love horror so I guess that caught my eye, but apparently its a family/kids thing =< don't know whether to bother.
Kaiser Eoghan
I still say it takes me that extra bit of convincing to watch a childrens animated film.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Friend: The banner is in good hands I see.
AidanAK47
Well Coraline wasn't written by Laika. It was written by Neil Gaiman. Laika just adapted it. Still I would like to check out Kubo to see what all the hype is about.
SuperMario
@anony29442: I will watch Kubo this coming week so I will comment on the movie then. But I'm not that surprise if Kubo has a weak writing. Laika never really great at story development: I mean Coraline is exellent, ParaNorman is just okay and Boxstrolls writing is just so underdeveloped and full of plotholes
SuperMario
@friend: wow. It looks awesome. But why only one witch? ^^
Friend
Hey everyone! Just an update on our new banner, here's my WIP up to now: [link src="https://i.imgur.com/0QSv6IK.png
I'm"] trying a witch as a tribute to one of psgel's favorite anime maho shojotai. Feedback is welcome, I have a lot left to do. A 5:1 aspect ratio is the weirdest dimension I've ever painted in
Anonymous29442
I just saw Kubo and the 2 strings and im really shocked at all the praise its receiving. People calling it an instant masterpiece on looks alone but not enough are talking about how underdeveloped the characters and story were. It felt as if they made the whole thing up as they went along to the point where I couldnt suspend my disbelief any longer and got irritated.
Anonymous29415
qualidea code's characters havent become better in terms of how they are written; only that they have been fleshed out in the most generic and trivial of ways as to sympathize with them; and sure, they have become some what likeable in the same way you'd like a person who you heard nothing but kind things about but that does not save the characters from being boring. QC is still a bad show
AidanAK47
@Anon27511, even if the animation was kept consistent the story still can't really escape the done to death aspect of it's story. I agree that the writing has gotten better but despite that the show just feels...meh.
Anonymous27511
Fucking Qualidea Code, as the story and characters become more interesting, the animation and drawing proportionately decreases. Sad they simply do not have the budget to pull off what seems like a potentially very good story
K-Off
@Mike I'm sure you already heard but for some reason I didn't keep up to date. I thought it was strange that releases stopped in March after chapter 68,.
K-Off
Just learned that the writer of my favorite webtoon is battling terminal cancer, but despite it she hopes to finish it someday. God damn I would've never expected this.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Once spilled hot microwaved food over my hand by mistake, hurt for a day.
Kaiser Eoghan
*remaining
Kaiser Eoghan
@Bam: The story and ideas however were better in gandahar I felt. Time masters while good was a bit stop and start in its pace and animation.
I’m definitely interested in Laloux’s other, short animations and Mobius’ comic book work.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Bam: I watched Rene Laloux's remain animated films, Gandahar and time masters, I enjoyed both but not as much as Fantastic planet. I remember we talked about fantastic planet two years ago. Did you see the other two I mentioned. I liked the big moments and the ending to time masters, especially those angel things.
Anonymous27024
Ok. I beat Federation Force. I think the main positive is that the levels were playable despite the lack of voice chat. The bosses took a lot of damage and the beginning and end are relevant to the Prime continuity.
SuperMario
@K-Off: I did it once just like you did, and once when I put a metal bowl into a microwave. So yeah, boys will always be boys.
Bam
I tried my best not to half-ass either of them tho. Any oddity you guys see just write it off as mental exhaustion.
Bam
Okay, I'm officially beat. These two reviews should be considered companion pieces, as some material from one flew into the other. Thank god that episode 08 was not a heavy one, or I'd be completely depleted.
K-Off
Shit, I'm a damn idiot at baking, slightly burnt my hand a minute ago grabbing a hot tray with a wet towl. Why do I even try.
K-Off
@afgm Alright, send me a message at fightthepowwa@gmail.com and we'll work it out.
Bam
*cinematography
Bam
@K-off: I second that, as although the Poirot series has very well-done choreography, casting and music, there is still a little more of that unquantifiable magic sprinkled on the Granada series. But keep watching and I'll guarantee that Suchet will become the quintessential Poirot in your mind as well.
K-Off
I said that while I liked the performance and the direction, I didn't think that it did for Poirot what Granada did for Holmes.
K-Off
@Bam Yeah it is, and generally when I camp I like to stay for 1-2 weeks, places like Niagara or Yellowstone I can pretty much see everything I want to see in a few days so I don't find much value going to those places. The Adirons on the other hand is diverse as hell.
Bam
@K-off: I'm not sure if you mentioned it while I was gone: but did you get to watch any of the Poirot series with David Suchet? And if so, what are your thoughts?
Bam
I generally go to either the Muir Woods north of SF, or the forests around Big Sur. It doesn't take much to please me really.
Bam
@K-ff: is that by Lake Champlain? Cuz I've been there once and loved it.
Bam
@K-off: I thought of a combined post, but my OCD wouldn't allow a skip in the episodic order of the reviews.
K-Off
Usually when you go camping in Yellowstone or Yosemite the tourist industry kills those places, like I'd be on a rowboat and see cars, cabins, and people from a long ways offshore. The Adirondacks are nice because their building codes mandate construction to be hidden behind trees.
K-Off
@Bam My favorite camping spot is the Adirondacks in upstate NY, I went there probably 4-7 times and never get tired of the place. No, I don't have any posts for now, but for future reference consider combining episodic reviews when you get behind. I.E. Episode 6-8 Review
Bam
Also there's a reader in the comment section of Berserk 07 who wants to know if we have a notification system. I vaguely remember a widget that links the site to a FaceBook page. If anybody knows how that works, or if it's still functional, please shed some light on the matter for him/her. Thx.
Bam
@Aidan @K-off @Mario either one of y'all has any post near completion? I'm almost done with Berserk 08 and as previously mentioned, really prefer not to put two reviews up back to back. I think the length of them is already a hassle for some to get thru, let alone two right after eachother. I think it hurts the viewership, but if nothing's on hand then I'll guess I'll just finish up and post mine.
Bam
@Kaiser: I was actually camping near a mountain, but aren't all mountains somewhat holy? That could be my bias tho, since I was raised on the Alborz mountain range, and for me there is something therapeutic about the mountain air.
Kaiser Eoghan
Yes! Looks like the shoutbox is fixed and not deleting posts after 24 hours anymore!
Kaiser Eoghan
lol Or you could live in the shitty suburb where I do and spend your time just waiting for when your internet connection randomly cuts out twice a month or as it has the past few days two-three times a day.
Kaiser Eoghan
Basically bam went up the Holy mountain .
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: ....guy I know who loves war films and I've ended up inadvertedly/un-intentionally gotten him to buy some fucked up Polish horror film that just happens to be set in WW2. lol he's going to be pretty freaked out when he watches it.
Bam
Everything been cool here? Hehe ... looks like I conveniently missed all the hard parts.
Bam
@Mario: thx m8. I wish I could just make it down to Rio on a whim, but then again, I took a much-needed vacation, so I ain't complaining.
SuperMario
Welcome back Bam, I was already convinced that you went to Rio for screwing around. Lol
Bam
Also I apologize for the absence. I was gone somewhere without reliable internet access, and looking back I should've gave a notification.
Either way, I'm back now, and will be jumping on getting those Berserk reviews out as soon as possible.
Bam
Man looky here with the renovations; I like it.
SuperMario
@Vyse: wow. So how was the sites then back from 2005?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: and what is that sh!te you're talking about?
VyseLegendaire
<— fixed
VyseLegendaire
<— me
VyseLegendaire
Ive been a reader since 2005
Kaiser Eoghan
Haha, this'll be fun lol
Kaiser Eoghan
.....that feeling when you keep going on about a show or film but fail to give all the details...and someone goes out and buys it not knowing the full extent of the mad shit their in for...s--t lol
Anonymous24840
any reader from 2005 here....
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: This guy seems interesting: https://letterboxd.com/director/tsai-ming-liang/
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Hmm, not familiar with him.
I really really loved in the mood for love, alot, it emotionally effected me. I even watched it three times.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I couldn't seem to enjoy any of Zimou yangs films apart from Hero, which had some pretty creative fight scenes. I've seen the story of Ricky and some of John-woos films but they were more just silly entertaining exploitation films.
SuperMario
Don't know if you know the Vietnamese-French Tran Anh Hung. His works are stunning too. If you want to check out East-Asian cinema don't forget to check him out.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Yeah, but Park Chan Wood changed the ending, so the author insisted that the Handmaiden is more "inspired" than "based". The third chapter is the weakest part for me
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Of interest, The handmaiden was based on some British book/tv show.
Kaiser Eoghan
I need to completely re-evaluate/get into more Chinese cinema.
Kaiser Eoghan
Doesn't look like I've seen anything by Hong-sang-so.
My favourite Korean actor is song-kang-ho.
Kaiser Eoghan
Theres an anime convention over here in Dublin in three months. Although I haven't been to one in years.
SuperMario
I'm heading to anime convention today. Normally I don't really care about those conventions but I figure I'd come this year to see the taste of it. The only hassle is it's 3-hour drive, which gonna be a pain when I drive back after a long day being there.
SuperMario
Bong Joon-ho, on the other hand,is incredible at writing. His scripts are often layered, sharp and best of all fuses many tones/ genres into one coherent whole. The best thing about this Korean New Wave directors is they all have very distinctive voices. But my favorite director isn't the ones that you list. That would be Hong Sang Soo. I just love his simplicity style so much.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Park Chan Wood is a master of visual. Whenever I come to his movies I expected to be blown-away by his visual. He can write compelling characters (he loves his characters) as well but his screenplays in general are weak. You can watch his lesser effort "I'm a Cyborg, but That's Okay" and see many things that made him good/bad. That's the movie I feel he made without the care of the critic
afgm
.
afgm
@koff: Yeah I can help. But midterms/finals are coming up so I can't dedicate to much time.
Kaiser Eoghan
I always felt Bong-jong and Chang-dong , kim-di-duk and Kim-jee-woon were better than Park-chan-wook. Oldboy did have that one hell of an ending, so did lady vengeance but I feel that those are the bits people tend to remember and the rest was good but not great.
Topgavin
For anyone that doesn't regularly browse /r/anime, Godzilla is apparently getting an anime adaption by Polygon Pictures with Urobuchi involved. Should be good.
K-Off
Well, I climbed to rank 52 in Overwatch with Tracer alone. Looking forward to season 2 already, but I do wish Blizzard had somehow implemented a single-player storyline since the lore in Blizzard titles is always so vast. Kind of surprised they didn't make one with Overwatch.
K-Off
@Kaiser Watch Train to Busan if you can. Me neither, I can't dig too deep into Korean films due to the language barrier. Sure would be convenient to have Vincent recommending films again.
K-Off
@afgm Hey, are you still interested in helping out with the site? At this point I'm looking over the site's code & doing some rewriting - if you think you can help, let me know.
K-Off
@Mario I hadn't watched Old Boy for 6 years when I got to I Saw the Devil and it was out of mind for me, so you may be right.
SuperMario
@K-Off: maybe it was just me but I was underwhelmed by I Saw the Devil. The point it trying to match was similar to OldBoy, and Oldboy's execution was way better (OldBoy's one of my favorite movie). Yes, the soundtracks of OldBoy, Lady Vengeance are exceptional. I still listen to The Last Waltz after all those years...
K-Off
The soundtrack in a lot of these Korean films are top notch as well, Lady Vengeance and I Saw the Devil in particular.
K-Off
@Mario Speaking of which, Korean psychological thrillers are hands down some of the best in the last 10-20 years. I Saw the Devil, Lady Vengeance, Old Boy, list goes on.
SuperMario
@Aidan: It just comes to me that we're already half way of this season... Time sure flies
SuperMario
@Kaiser: so please finish up Inside Mari. The last chapter had been out. I need someone to talk about that goddamn manga anw
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I always consider the Korean New Wave started back in 2000, and really peaked in 2003 (OldBoy, Memories of Murders, Spring Summer..., A Tale of 2 Sisters). Before 2000? The only director I can think of was Im Kwon-Taek
AidanAK47
About nearly finished Fata Morgana but I might have to finish doom first because that thing is eating a huge chunk of my SSD drive.
AidanAK47
Back up to date...at least for now. I have to go to a wedding so It's likely I will fall behind again. Got to admit that I haven't had much of an opinion on the latest episodes. Might be just mentally drained personally.
SuperMario
@K-off: I totally agree with you. 28 Days Later is a gem. Though I'm not really into zombie genre as a whole, I'm more into psychological stuffs more.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Reminding me I need to catch up on boku mari no naka.
Kaiser Eoghan
Although the trailer for train to busan does catch my interest.
Kaiser Eoghan
I've gotten more than enough out of Korean films, I can enjoy them but I probably don't sing the same high praises for them as most bar some exceptions.
Seeing Lee-chang-dongs stuff I'm actually kind of interested in finding some more low key korean films.
Kaiser Eoghan
Very likely a view shared by my indie loving friend and I, but Battery and Wyrmwood were jokey takes on the zombie genre I thought were enjoyable.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Likely my preference for British comedy that makes me laugh more at Shaun of the dead more. Although Hot fuzz is the better Simon Pegg film in my opinion.
In terms of Korean films, I've been wondering, what are the pre-90s ones like. Lee-chang-dong started the Korean new wave in 1997.
K-Off
I'm still waiting for a good horror-zombie film, nothing has met my expectations after 28 Days Later (and techinically REC), which admittedly is a high bar.
K-Off
@Mario I am watching Seoul Station next week, that was just me recapping TtB after I watched it a few days ago. It's definitely more of a thriller, it has good "wtf" moments but nothing I'd call horror.
SuperMario
@K-Off: I thought you were going to watch Seoul Station? So I gather that Train of Busan is more thriller than horror? Just thinking of Zombieland already puts a smile on my face. That one and Shaun of the Dead are so goddamn hilarious.
SuperMario
@Aidan: I will review them in the future. atm I'm in watching/ reading mode so I'll push back all the world movie/ full show reviews for a while
K-Off
@Mario My impression of Train to Busan was that although it wasn't anything ground breaking, it had a great cast of characters and an entertaining gimmick that managed to stay exhilarating. I haven't seen a zombie film this well structured since Zombieland, even though they're completely opposite in tone.
AidanAK47
They are all yours if you want to do them.
SuperMario
Reading Inside Mary makes me want to watch Flowers of Evil again. If I remember correctly psgels never actually had a full review on this one, and Ping Pong.
AidanAK47
@Vyse, Width wise it's exactly the same as the old chat box. Though it's possible the old one had smaller font.
VyseLegendaire
This chat box is too narrow I think, only see a couple messages.
AidanAK47
@Anon18138, Yeah but I don't see that writer making something that truly represents the games. There may be a possibility of it being a good movie but that movie won't be Pokemon.
Anonymous18138
@AidanAK47 It'll have the writer of Gravity Falls. Though I don't have a high standard in regards to the 3D mascot and live-action style of movies.
SuperMario
They originally planned to male a live-action remake of Seoul Station, as the producer saw a footage of the animation and really loved it; but Yeon Sang-Ho (the director) insisted that if he was about to make a live-action film, he's go for a sequel instead. Hence Train of Busan.
SuperMario
@K-off: I missed my chance to watch Train to Busan but I heard nothing but rave from it. People who watched it really loved it. Damn, you make me jealous man, since I want to watch Seoul Station and review it here. Come watch it and tell me what you think; my bet is you'll enjoy it.
K-Off
@Mario Have you watched Train to Busan? I'm planning to watch its animated prequel Seoul Station next week. Animation looks shabby as hell but I can always expect a good story from the koreans.
AidanAK47
So the live action Pokemon movie will feature detective pikachu. Clearly a necessary inclusion.
SuperMario
I'm reading Inside Mary now and it's quite a gem despite its ridiculous premise. There's a lot of raw emotions. I love raw emotions. As expected from the same guy who wrote Flowers of Evil.
AidanAK47
Yep, when she sends the images let me know. It may have been a while ago but I am a qualified graphic designer so even I can lend a hand to the banner design.
AidanAK47
Ugh...a new version of wordpress is ready to be updated to. I have a bad feeling updating to the latest version could potentially break things.
K-Off
Alright, I've got Friend onbaord with a commission for our new banner. She says she'll send us sketches so we can decide if it's something we want.
AidanAK47
Considering how much trouble this plugin has given us, i am not up for adding another one. Only thing the subscriber account thing needs is me to tick and box and get rid of that password promt.
K-Off
@Aidan You can set that up if you'd like, though another idea would be to set up buddypress and link it to there. But it's yet again another plugin.
Total users: 38

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Berserk(2016) – 07 [The Black Witch]

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