Posted on 6 January 2016 with categories: Young Blackjack

This is a prequel to Osamu Tezuka’s manga series Blackjack and upon starting the series I worried that it’s old school sensibilities might interfere with telling a good story. Now having finished the series I can say that Young Blackjack was an interesting show. There aren’t many shows that feature medical drama with historical events and in that regard this anime is a breath of fresh air. The series mainly features Blackjack getting into a dire situation where he needs to perform surgery on someone. So Blackjack finds himself getting caught in the middle of the Vietnam war, student political activism and the Civil Rights Movement. It does prove to be quite entertaining though doesn’t quite reach the potential it could have had. The cast are relatively intriguing with Blackjack and his drug addict assistance being the standouts. Though his friend sadly disappears for the second half of the series. The rest of the character tend to have one time appearences and once there arc is over they are never to be heard of again. Many of them tend to be a standpoint in character form to express radical views or heighten the drama.

One of the particularly odd things about this series is in its presentation. It deals with some fairly dark topics but it is shown in the most over dramatic way possible. It’s a double edged sword as it allows the series to dive into some thorny topics without letting it get too grim. But in doing so it doesn’t quite give those topics the depth they deserve and often makes the nature of the problem rather one dimensional. Characters act too erratically in order to present a point and Blackjack is rarely in a position that tests his moral compass. There are also moments where the sillier aspects of the world break the down to earth nature of the series. A prime example of this is a villain presented in the final episodes whose resourcefulness with prosthetics leads him to gain tools on the level of Inspector Gadget.  Even his eyeball has the functionality of a Swiss army knife. The second episode even has Blackjack perform surgery that’s practically magic. When coming into a series like this you have to remember that this is based on a old Tezuka anime that featured a little girl sidekick who was in actuality a sentient tumor in a plastic exoskeleton. For this kind of series, when it throws something ridiculous at you, you just have to roll with it. If you can’t then one of the final arcs is bound to throw you off balance completely.

In terms of visuals and sounds blackjack preforms adequately. The soundtrack is suitable but forgettable and the visuals provide whats needed while looking quite good at times. The biggest failing of the series is that the titular promise of seeing the event that turns Hazama into Blackjack is never kept. The series taunts that each event might trigger it but sadly all we have is a random number of events that may have slightly influenced it and an ending note that he will indeed become Blackjack. Young Blackjack wasn’t an outstanding anime but it was interesting enough to keep me coming back week after week. As an introduction to the series it served its purpose well as I am now interested to watch it’s predecessors. According to fans, it didn’t do its source justice so it should prove worthwhile to look at previous anime adaptations. I have started the OVA and it’s already looking promising. If one was to see this as a incentive to check out the Blackjack series I consider this anime a success.

Posted on 10 December 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Young Blackjack

Thus begins one man’s revenge against those whom have done him wrong. It would not be out of line to say that Hyakki’s transformation from all around good guy to B-movie slasher villain was a tad sudden. The man is certainly desperate and I think suddenly having someone to blame for everything that’s gone wrong in your life could give rise to a thirst for vengeance but in this case we have the beginning and end of the transformation without the progress between. Hyakki accidentally killed one of his targets and suddenly took it as a sign from God that he must finish the job. The thing is that despite all efforts to make him intimating, these men are essentially getting chased by a limbless man. Hyakki has mastered the art of the Jason Voorhees casual stroll which can catch up with anyone regardless of running speed. As I stated before I don’t really feel any sympathy for his victims as they have brought it upon themselves. Any man who’s seen the count of Monte Cristo should know that before slighting a man you better be prepared for payback. A lot of this murder spree is inspired by the character Hyakki takes after who chased demons who stole their limbs.

One thing I must say is that detective has some of the worst bedside manner I have ever seen. I may not be a professional on the subject but I am sure you do not casually tell a patient that they lost an arm and then proceed to tell him his fellow doctor is dead.Then getting surprised when the patient has a complete mental breakdown. Detective, maybe you should have left this to the doctor instead.We did have an interesting moment with Blackjack coming to accept his need to operate regardless of laws. The Maiko made a valiant effort to prevent Blackjack from doing another illegal operation but due to her own lack of skill and experience was eventually pushed aside by Blackjack. It was interesting at just how she reacted to that, she certainly has pride but had to come to accept that Blackjack could save someone she couldn’t. She still took credit for his work to keep him in the medical world but that experience isn’t going to disappear. Other than that Hyakki isn’t making any effort to cover up his involvement with the murders which is odd considering the guy isn’t stupid. Or possibly he has no intent to get away with this at all.

Posted on 2 December 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Young Blackjack

I think the outcome of this episode was thoroughly spoiled by the opening, where we have Blackjack and this Hyakki facing each other as arch enemies. But I didn’t expect that the man’s character would be so interesting. The episodes beginning broke the fourth wall by referring the original Mangaka’s works and how is man is based on Tezuka’s other work. I was fully expecting a villain of the level of zaki from episode two and got instead a sympathetic ambitious man who had most of his limbs lost in a car accident. As well as a doctor who saw Blackjacks recovery and the surgery that made him who he is. He’s a really respectable guy seeing as he lost all his limbs and yet uses his disability to help design better prosthetics and even having a fiancé willing to stay with him regardless if he’s limbless or not.

So it seems that revenge is in order and while the show will likely go the route of how revenge is never right, I can’t help but feel it’s justified in this case. From the looks of things these doctors cut the brakes on his car and fully intended to kill him in order to remove him from the medical world. I don’t see how responding in kind is particularly evil. Still one thing I find odd about how these doctors prevented him from operating again by informing the patient that he would be using prosthetic limbs. Wouldn’t that be par for the course to inform the patient on just who is doing the operation? I mean what would have happened if after the operation he went to see the patient and the patient got furious that he was operated on by a quadraplegic?

A common point that is brought up again and again is that if Blackjack continues to carry out these illegal procedures that he will never be allowed to become a true doctor. Seeing as we already know that he will lose his license and become a back alley surgeon these reminders that Blackjack will lose his license seem to provoke the question “I this the operation that gets him removed from the professional medical world?” So far he’s managed to avoid that outcome but with Hyakki going rogue there’s a chance he might let slip that Blackjack was the one who gave him the ability to operate. These two look to become enemies next episode but just how will they combat each other in a show about medical operations?

Posted on 25 November 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Young Blackjack

While I find the level of risk in this two part arc to be inconsequential, I must admit that I like how it all turned out. For this is the first time in this series that Blackjack failed. While he was able to discern the cause of Johnny’s lack of pain, he was unable to treat it with Dr Risenberg coming in to fix Johnny’s problem himself. So for the first time Blackjack was not in control of the situation and proven that he isn’t invincible. Dr Risenberg is a nice example of knowing too much about those you respect. I think that the internet, in particular Twitter, has given us far too much insight into our idols. This is an issue because people aren’t perfect and we all have our issues and demons. In many ways it’s better to keep that untarnished vision of those you admire than to look too deeply and find they are just as human as you are. In this case, our dear doctor was involved with the experiments done on Jewish people in concentration camps. From the sound of things his thirst for medical knowledge lead him to human experimentation and now he even fears that Blackjack walks down the same path as he did.

So his efforts in this episode were less to give Johnny a normal life but rather to save Blackjack from getting erased by the American military so they could keep their experiments secret. This episode looks like it was dealing with people’s inner demons as we have a sufferer of PTSD, Tommy around to help Blackjack out. And if I am not mistaken it seems that Tommy will end up being another future adversary to Blackjack. Again I must bring up Blackjacks over exaggerated method of presentation, as I truly haven’t come to a conclusion whether it is holding the show back or keeping it from falling flat on it’s face. Blackjack always deals with serious issues but the nature of the show is highly in your face which gives it dramatic punch while sacrificing the credibility of taking it seriously. I am reminded of the Phoenix wright games which make use of a similar method to make what would be rather dull courtroom proceedings in ridiculously theatrical displays that can pull any player in with it’s energy. But those games are often comical and lighthearted as a result despite dealing with murder most of the time. So I wonder if Blackjack was presented in a manner that was more serious would that be a benefit or would it drain the colour out of what has be a really good show so far?

Posted on 17 November 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Young Blackjack

Racism is always a thorny topic to deal with. Regardless of intent there are just so many ways of messing it up, be it by using strawmen or one dimensional caricatures. It’s a topic that requires a delicate hand to prevent pushing it to its extreme all to make an obvious point of Racism being bad. So when I saw what was in store for this episode and knew that something as in your face as Blackjack was tackling a rather touchy subject I was rather worried. For good reason it seems, as we have two black men holding a girl hostage and beating up a guy just for the sole purpose of making a point that violence gets results. I never really looked at Blackjack as being historically accurate but I find the portions of the revolts being spilt between and nonviolent and Violent group to be suspect. Luckily this episode is not about that and instead just uses it as setup for Blackjacks next challenge.

As it turns out, Johnny the immortal is unable to feel pain. In a marvel universe that would equate to a superpower to which can be used to fight crime. In real life however it’s a serious issue that prevents the person from recognising just how damaged his body is. Pain may be agonizing but it alerts you to abnormalities within the body. Without it you could be walking around with a serious injury and never realize it till it was far too late. As our friend saw here when he didn’t even feel his twisted arm. For Johnny this is a double edged sword as it allows him to protest without being deterred by attacks, thus capturing his efforts on camera. But it also means his injuries become far more severe. The focus of this two part episodes looks to be just what is causing this abnormality though the preview of the next episode looks to have already given away the answer.

Young Blackjack remains a fun watch though this episode was one that a tuned out to more than the others. When compared to the intensity of the previous Vietnam episodes, the conflict here lacks weight. It isn’t this mans life at stake but rather something which is more of an inconvenience. The three day time limit just seems to be a attempt to add urgency to the problem but regardless of whether they fail or not this will not result in the man’s death. The conflict just is minor with more focus being on the moral dilemma of letting a man depend on a potentially life threatening defect.

Posted on 12 November 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Young Blackjack

There are times when Blackjacks over the top nature can be entertaining presentation wise and others when it can remove any sense of surprise. While I do like the things Blackjack explores, it is very clear cut on how it shows it. In this episode the man that Blackjack and the army Medic have been spending two episodes trying to save, dies when he wanders out of his room and trips a landmine. This scene was exhibited in such a way that I knew exactly what was going to happen before it did. The minute I saw Steve in that field, I knew he was going to die and he made that all the more certain as he started walking back with tears in his eyes, triggering so many death flags that the reaper himself couldn’t stand it any longer. Bob was quick to blame the Vietcong but I point my finger at the others. In particular I find it funny that Blackjack never thought of the state his patient would wake up in and worse still had no one watching over him. To be fair however, it’s not as if anyone would expect the guy to walk into a single landmine placed in a wide open field. Really, how is it that that single lone landmine managed to remain undetonated right up till this moment or who was the lazy soldier who figured a single solitary landmine in the middle of an open field near a Vietnam village was a perfect place to kill some Americans?

As I said, I don’t think the characters handled this very well, especially when it came to Bob. It doesn’t take a psychiatrist to figure out that Bob was in a very dangerous emotional state and yet the characters only seem to make it worse by antagonizing him. Blackjack and the Medic in particular really should have handled the situation better as it was clear to anyone with eyes that Bob was about to do something drastic. Which makes me even more surprised that he was left to his own devices. In all honestly, you guys have no one to blame but yourselves for the guy calling in an air strike. The episode finale is something I raise an eyebrow at, as Black and the others finish surgery on a Vietnam soldier, survive an air strike and carry the guy through a literal sea of fire in what looks to be very flammable material. This show can be silly and over dramatic but that was really pushing it.

The episode’s final reveal was unfortunately lost on me due to my ignorance of the source material. Upon the reveal of the army doctor’s name I was feeling left out as the way the reveal was staged made this seem like a very big deal, yet when I heard his name I had no idea to its significance. So one google search later, I got exactly who he is and it puts these past few episodes in new context. Put simply, this mystery Medic is Doctor Kiriko, Blackjacks future Arch-nemesis. Eventually this war twists his personality causing him to essentially become Blackjack’s evil counterpart so it is rather interesting that these two worked together once to save a life without even realizing it.

Posted on 4 November 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Young Blackjack

With Blackjack and the others captured last episode, it’s only natural that the next step would be torture. Still I expected something much worse than what was presented. All things considered, I think Blackjack and the crew got off easy. They didn’t even get a “Tiger Cage.” Of course the big threat here was that the patient Blackjack treated isn’t out of the woods yet and the conditions of the imprisonment isn’t helping. Having the wound infested with maggots isn’t exactly ideal, even if it worked out for the best. Still I pity the poor souls that had to resort to Maggot therapy, the feeling must be unbearable. In relation we learn more about Blackjacks past and how he came to get his scars. The exploded bomb explanation could use more elaboration though at least we know that Blackjack didn’t simply just walk out of a hospital like nothing happened.

I actually found an article about this episode which complained that Blackjacks Torture scene was sexualized and really that statement has me confused. While watching the scene I wasn’t under the impression that it was intended to be sexual and I think this really is a matter of the eye of the beholder. That said that scene between Yabu and Blackjack was most definitely suggestive. With that blur and the look of compassion between the two you wouldn’t be surprised if the suddenly engaged in a passionate embrace. But let’s leave such fantasies to the fujoshi’s.

Though the main part of this episode was to introduce the American Medic whose methods are borderline insane. Parachuting into war territory with a full host of surgical equipment is something I figured would get any man dead long ago. Naturally he scoffs when he encounters Blackjack and it’s fairly predictable how this turns out. Both dislike each other at first but then see each others skills. Then they share a drink with mutual respect. I can’t say I am sold on this new character yet but I am intrigued to see what he can bring to the show and  whether he will play the role of mentor or rival.

Posted on 28 October 2015 with categories: Currently Watching:, Young Blackjack

Sorry for the lack of updates but I was hit with a sudden nasty case of Kidney stones which left me in hospital for a few days. I had a Keyhole surgery which left me not in the best shape for a week so I can’t say I was in the right mood to blog. Details of said operation would likely make you cringe and cross your legs if you happen to be a guy. Needless to say I was glad to be knocked out for the procedure. So now it’s time to play catch up.

Blackjack continues to be a solid show. The show does lack subtlety however as characters tend to act in over exaggerated manners and everything is placed in your face. That said it might not need it. The stories themselves are interesting in their own right and the over the top nature tends to lighten up some otherwise deathly serious situations. But what I find to be its most interesting aspect is the moral dilemmas Blackjack faces. Episode 3 in particular is a perfect example of how just because a person is technically doing the right thing, does not mean they are not a terrible person. It really begs the question that if the right thing is being done for the wrong reasons, is it is a good deed? The characters themselves seemed a bit too much of a strawman but I liked the dilemma they placed on Blackjack. Both seemed unwilling to put there own neck in a noose to save a life but when it came to Blackjack they were essentially morally blackmailing him. They forcibly got him involved and placed him in a situation where he must put his profession at stake, all the while demonizing him as if he doesn’t help this deserter then the man would most certainly die. The female student is a perfect example of someone using the moral high ground to inflate their own self worth and ego. A kind of person seen all too often in the planes of the internet.

Placing it during the Vietnam war was also master move as it puts Blackjack in one of the most perilous situations for a doctor to be in. I am honestly surprised with how the series is handling the drug addict doctor’s character. Most of the time this kind of character is a walking moral life lesson to not do drugs, yet he’s actually one of the more morally upstanding characters in the show. Using his experiences with past mistakes to help keep Blackjack on the right path. He also acts as a good trigger to place Blackjack in the hotspot of the Vietnam war with his attempt at redemption. There are the moments of old school such as the old “Oh my god, look at him being so amazing” inner monologues but I really like where this is going and so far Blackjack is delivering on a fairly unique experience.

CHANGE USERNAME
Kaiser-Eoghan
*poorly forcing
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: And that is one of the biggest advantages the show has for me, after being annoyed by so many shows ending up with tonal shifts and forcing cute designs into something more serious it is nice to see that girls last tour avoids that problem.
Amagi
My texts are always too long..
Amagi
It isn't enough to just say "look there is a dark subplot somewhere or a backdrop dystopia and we will get to it whenever it seems convenient". Last Tour is the opposite, it is moe, but the girls are part and product of the world they live in, + the cute and serious parts don't feel like two different series being glued together.
Amagi
Girl's Last Tour is the good type of moe show for me. There are many that have or pretend to have some serious undertone, be it some dystopian setting or politics or whatever. But the difference between the good and the bad shows is that the former are actually connected with their serious part in everything they think or do while the bad shows only use the other topic as cheap way to alure fans.
SuperMario
@Bokusen: I'm not sugarcoating it, but Houseki tends to be the title that split the audience. Give it a try at least. If you can tolerant the first three episodes, chances that you will enjoy the rest
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: Now if only someone will translate the side story manga aswell.
KTravlos
Happiness! New chapters of Gunka no Baltazar!
Bokusen
@SuperMario Thanks! I'll give Houseki no Kuni a try then. A lot of the series I thought would be good are disappointing me, so I might be following a low number of series this season & it'd be cool if Houseki turns out to be something I like enough to watch this season.^-^
SuperMario
@Kaiser: right. The sole reason I described it as "cinematic" was just to lure you into watching it, so mission accomplished! Mind you, Girls' Last Tour is still a moe show at heart (look at their round faces and those big eyes. They're killing me)
Kaiser-Eoghan
But in all seriousness, I had had it initially written off as a crap moe show.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: You're ministry of anime propaganda tactics mentioning how cinematic it is got me to pick it up =P And you know how much of an aesthetics guy I am =P
SuperMario
I'm glad that many of you enjoying Girls' Last Tour. It's a nice little gem that I think works best when you going to it without any expectation
SuperMario
I swear this season has a lot of good anime to offer. I'm jaded
Amagi
I always considered backgrounds as pretty important. Most anime only use them as backdrops because they have to be there somehow and it's really a different thing than Girls' Last Journey for example. Also I will like everything that has exploration and world building.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And achieves taking the viewer into its world, thankfully without relying on tons of expositional dialogue.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Girls last tour, somewhat succeeds in pulling me in by using its landscape that dwarfs the characters, to create its atmosphere, I wouldn't call it all that unfunny either. Though premise could risk going stale.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, HA! Yeah I would like to believe but I am thinking that's not the case. Besides next season is looking pretty barren so far.
Amagi
Eden would be great. But speaking of it, a lot of good manga get adapted recently. Maybe they finally understood that generic isekai, harem and school stuff isn't as popular as they thought it would be.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Maybe one day I can hope for a Freesia or Eden Endless world adaptation.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Jesus christ....I never thought it would happen, Banana fish is being adapted, I didn't think they could adapt a shoujo like that in todays market.
KTravlos
I also watched Inuyashiki and Girl's Last Tour. Inuyashiki looks great. Man do I hate that young guy. Reading what he did and seeing it was a totally different experience. Cannot wait for the next episode.

Girls Last Tour is really something special. In a good way.
KTravlos
Altair's episode showed all the issues and all the good things of the show. The pace is too quick, and yet they managed to build Urado and its denizens up quick fast in it. But again, this is a show that needs the LGOH treatment.
Amagi
The manga also always uses "he/him" but I am not sure if the original had this too (like "kare" or similar words) since you can talk for a long time in Japanese without ever using pronouns.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah, yes I noticed Phos uses Boku in this episode which is the male way of saying I.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Man, Zvyagintsev really, really knows how to deliver truly emotional gut punching moments and endings that are like cutting at open wounds.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Houseki has fallen into place for me with those scenes with Dia and the snail thing and I've fully embraced the show, happy to see it just continue to do its thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: While Marios are girls best friend DIAmonds ahhhhre for evvvvvvahhh *Shirley Basey voice*
Masky
*bride
Masky
I can say though that if people fear the "Bastard Boyfiend" angle, its not that really. Its more of really weird apprenticeship relationship. Ainsworth is inhuman character in many ways
Masky
Oh hey, Mahoutsukai no Yome is on covered list. Nice, it is weird manga to read through since I'm kind of creeped out by the bribe thing, but its barely mentioned at all.
Anonymous1497942
After finishing Made in Abyss it stuck out, some animation shortcuts in this week's Mahoutsukai. Holding on frames a bit too long, mainly having the music giving the emotion. To be fair, it was also a slow part in the manga.
Kaiser-Eoghan
If I recall correctly, the words "wandering Jew" were used at one point in the manga in relation to the villain.
Lenlo
Mahoutsukai was very pretty this week, but there were some troubling things popping up in there.
SuperMario
@Aidan: They are trying to bring Phos back from a snail. Man, Houseki sure is... quirky
AidanAK47
@Mario, I would take a guess and say they are fighting evil by moonlight.
SuperMario
Okay, heading to Houseki now... let's see our gems doing this week
SuperMario
@Bokusen: (not because I'm blogging it but) watch it. it's a polarized one but it at least offers something original. I still haven't watched the third one though.
Anonymous1497873
The new Mahoutsukai no Yome episode was so beautiful. TwT
Bokusen
BTW, is Houseki no Kuni worth watching? I was turned off by the animation, but I've read some good reviews on it.
Bokusen
Darn, last message didn't show up for me but now it does. Sorry about that.
Bokusen
Tanya the Evil and Uchouten Kazoku 2 were the gems this year for me so far, but Abyss was definitely the best thing I watched last season.
Bokusen
Tanya the Evil & Uchouten Kazoku 2 were the gems this year for me so far, though Abyss was definitely the best thing I watched last season.
Amagi
Doesn't mean that there weren't other good series but I distinguish between good and somethin special I will instantly remember even months or years later.
Amagi
How can you not like at least one of the current series, this season is pretty good. MiA was probably my only real great thing in the last season though.
AidanAK47
@Anon, Aren't you forgetting Acca, Rakugo, Little Witch Academia and Tanya the Evil?
Anonymous1497006
Made in Abyss seems like it's the only gem this year for me tbh
AidanAK47
Whoa, I never even knew we had a PM feature.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I've received it. Thanks Kaiser. I've never noticed the PM feature either
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I sent you a private message.
SuperMario
oh boy. Just received Mind Game Bluray Region free today. I ordered/funded it through Kickstarter a year ago and eventually forgot about it. Was a nice surprise to see it in the mail today
silver
I enjoyed this week's Kino. Leave only footprints indeed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
On the other hand I noticed some slight censoring in juuni taisen episode 3 I think.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I was also surprised with the lack of censorship during Inuyashiki's second episode.
Kaiser-Eoghan
First episode of inuyashiki covered the whole of volume 1.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*but almost never
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: In general, Death of Stalin is an amusing film throughout, but never laugh out loud hilarious, Simon Beale is hilarious in it as Beria.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Gonzo did that mecha 7 samurai thing we must never speak of. However schmaltzly/sentimental Ikiru is, however it slumps slightly in the middle and final arc , it was still a genuinely moving film.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*than it is
Kaiser-Eoghan
To elaborate, I expected to dislike inuyashiki based on not enjoying Gantz, my reaction to the second episode was the same as Amagi's . The first episode was heavy handed a bit as Aidan mentioned, but its harder to watch that scene with the older guy get bullied/tormented that it is to watch highschool kids getting picked on by cliche anime thugs.
AidanAK47
Also why Hillary Clinton? I mean i know Trump is supposed to have a cameo in the manga but why her?
AidanAK47
@Vyse, Lets not jinx it. Plenty of series have shown great potential in their second episodes only to flop later. We can sing praises if it keeps this quality to the conclusion.
VyseLegendaire
Inuyashiki main villain should be Hillary Clinton
VyseLegendaire
Inuyashiki is suddenly like the best thing of the decade.
Amagi
I wish there were more old MC series out there. Liked that about Real Drive too. Maybe someone will have mercy and adapt Kurosawa one day. Not exactly old but at least a series about a guy with midlife crisis.
Amagi
I thought the happenings of the second Inuyashiki episode would have been too egdy but they actually gave the last few scenes a very good impact and the episode showed pretty well how sociopathes think (that whole gap between emotions for real people VS manga/fiction characters and events)
KTravlos
yup, I have no problem with Lenlo's review. Execution is what matters with me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: You managed to sell me on a show that I didn't think I'd have bothered with.
silver
You did fine. It's a risk associated with reading post-viewing episodic discussions. Pretty much everyone knows that if you don't want to be spoiled don't even get online.
Lenlo
I tried to leave explicit spoilers about what happened outside the (more...) tag, but its a risk of readin a review I suppose.
silver
Hah, sorry about spoiling it. That's the problem with major shocks like that; they're most effective if you're not expecting them. Still, the show has deft execution of its executions, and that makes the experience worse than I could imagine.
Lenlo
Well im glad it convinced you. Tried something different with writing this week
KTravlos
man I should not had read the review. Now I will go and watch Inuyashiki. I had missed it.
silver
@Lenlo: It caught me off guard, too. Definitely working to earn that 'psychological' genre tag.
Lenlo
Well... Inuyashiki surprised me today. It went far darker than I was expecting. Thanks Gants author
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Such an odd art style, have you ever seen these? These are the film covers the Polish get:
Kaiser-Eoghan
*that was the most interesting character
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Z's ending was very very well played and it was Jean Tringnents was interesting, largely for that he was a right winger working with the left wingers.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And of course the British version of house of cards.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wonder if he's seen Yes Minister and The New Statesman, also political comedies and for those of us who lived in the 80s seeing Thatcherites getting slagged off was great.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I do think thick of it works better though as the humour serves a thirty minute episode more comfortably. Stalin's fairly short though so I don't think the joke will run out.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: the Death of stalin is the title I'm looking for as well. Will screen here in few weeks. I almost reccomend In the Loop and the Thick of It (haven't watched the latter though) for Travlos since they're a political satire, which I think he'll enjoy
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Hope you already booked that heavens feel screening, cause its sold out.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've heard that the anime's character development in Juuni taisen expands on the books, which only give them short lines for their backgrounds.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ah, so perhaps in Juuni taisen they'll spin that so the Rat guy uses the ox guy to his advantage in some different way.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: There is a special atmosphere watching anime on a big screen.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I might be seeing death of Stalin tomorrow or Saturday. The thick of it was hilarious and this has the same director as that.
SuperMario
Both Z and All the President's Men are coassic movie. Hold my attention from start to finish. Z, in particular, wowed me that I literally had my mouth wide open
SuperMario
Off tangent, watching Fireworks in the cinema the other day made me realize how I miss watching movies on the big screen. I might try to go to the cinema once a week again. Been missed out all the good movies lately.
SuperMario
In the Great Race story, Rat used a very underhanded tactic to win the race (it jumps into the Ox to pass the great river and then jump off to the finish line. This Rat guy's speciality is Killing All so there is a high chance that he survives till the end
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I have no doubt that we will have more amazing character arcs for Juuni Taisen.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But that could prove to be too predictable.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wonder if the Rat guy is going to be the wild card in all this, after all in the old story, wasn't it the Rat who won that zodiac race thing?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Juuni Taisen is killing off its most interesting characters.... =< I wanted the bird girl to stay around a bit longer.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd love to see more Lem or Stugastky style/brand of scifi, I need to rewatch stalker again.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Going back to the cyberpunk thing, I don't want just any ol' thing getting made, I want to see something scifi related thats ACTUALLY clever and has long and DIFFICULT dialogue .
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: While not a political series Chaos;head is a good example of being annoyed at the conspiracy thing, what drives me up the wall about that show and its sequel is how every every time I think about going back to it I realize that its only interesting on a surface level and is utter hokkum.
KTravlos
@Kaiser. Yup, perhaps because I work in political science, they tend to anger me. So I avoid them. Borgen is a good political series.

In general. It still startles how much of a better character anime Tsutomu was comapred to manga Tsutomu in Bridy the Mighty. But I forgive the manga as I get more Gomez!
AidanAK47
@Amagi/Kaiser, thought as much. Strike it off the list then. And God Tsubasa was a cluster fuck by the end.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Eh simul-dub of Juuni taisen is out, I might aswell keep up with that instead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Y'know I had this weird relationship with dragonball in general. When I was younger I never actively seeked out the show, but on a rare occasion I would watch random episodes whenever I was channel hopping and nothing else was on.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Clamp shared universe was a mistake.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I really really wish that that tone breaking style of comedy stops being a thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
It doesn't happen often, but there ARE shows we all have that snap trigger us when they get mentioned.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel my disdain of re:zero is because I hate Akame ga kill and Higurashi so much and it prevents me because of bias from enjoying it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: In addition to what i posted about Pandora, you will hate the comedy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: I will rewatch it, the first one is one of those things that improved on repeat viewings.
@Travlos: Conspiracy theories are one of those things I find myself taking interest in, then almost immediately consider immensely stupid and a waste of time.
Amagi
Aidan: If you didn't like the first parts of Pandora you won't like the rest either. Most people that loved it did this because of the characters and setting, the story isn't really getting better and I kinda disliked what they did near the end. It was overcomplicated and everyone had like three different personalities, plot twists and so on. Not nearly as bad as Tsubasa Chronicle though
AidanAK47
@Bokusenou, believe me when I say you are not few. There are plenty who Dislike Re:Zero. I can understand it and I sort of get where your coming from regarding the characters. (Though Saber sucks) There is just something about the series that I just adore.
KTravlos
@Kaiser. I have not watched most of them. But I have watched Z and All the President's Men. Both are great films. The issue with me is that while I like political thrillers I despite conspiracy theories. Far too many pol. thrillers dive into con.theory stuff. So I must be discriminating.
SuperMario
Okay, I'm off to watch Blade Runner 2049 now. Hopefully it can be as good as the original
Vonter
In contrast World's End Harem, surprisingly looks to be trying. It has one story trying to play straight, the scenario of being the last man in a world mainly habited by woman. And has had this framing of self worth, temptation and doubt I like. No work of art, but surprising for this type of manga.
Vonter
In regards to manga, I'll need to look for something good, being losing time with ecchi stuff. Which I can tell Okamoto should just make hentai, seeing as his latest work, doesn't even try to be anymore than pandering trash (at least older work, had a notion of a story).
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: Did all the presidents men and Parallax view by Pakula appeal to you?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: Actually as your are a Greek....have you watched Z, missing, State of siege or the confession? None of them are actually in Greek but they were political thrillers directed by Costa Gravas.
Anonymous1490677
KT here: Well I am a sucker for political thrillers and "grand" politics, so the direction it took is quite fun for me. Even if it does indicate a Tomino ending.
Kaiser-Eoghan
For me Titan peaked at volume 8 and I never bothered continuing on much further.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: I remember a commenters on here a good while ago that mentioned the ending didn't satisfy or come together well and made the investment not worth it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Honestly it was only near the halfway point I vested any interest in pandora hearts, the first 4 volumes left me wondering if I'd drop it, then near the last few volumes I simply fell out of reading it.
Bokusenou
I feel like I'm one of the few people who don't understand why Re: Zero is so popular...the only characters I half liked were Puck & Crusch (the latter because she reminded me of Saber from the Fate series, minus the unnecessary perma-blush marks) My anime club screened the series and I really should have skipped those meetings...
Lenlo
Mmm Inuyashiki episode 2 tomorrow. Time to see where it goes
AidanAK47
@Anon, That reminds me. Anime limited better announce the date of the Re:Zero Blu-ray release at that panel of theirs at MCM London Comic Con. They are the only ones known to have licensed it and they have a partnership with Funimation. Even if we don't get a second season I have to get the first on Blu-ray.
Anonymous1490189
Emilia re:zero
AidanAK47
Finally Got that review up. Been sitting in my to do list for a while.
SuperMario
I remeber in Dragon ball, they state that Son Goku takes 6 years of training to become a Super Saiyan. His oldest son takes 3 years and then the youngest one... only takes 3 months of training with his mother. So yeah...
AidanAK47
While we are talking about manga, I was looking into getting some manga boxsets and I saw one for pandora hearts. However I started reading it and 15 chapters in I just can't get into it. I hear a lot of praise for it but is it really worth continuing?
AidanAK47
@Amagi, yep. Like Naruto with the nine tailed beasts and Sharingan. At first they were cool and then everyone and their mother had Sharingan or a tailed Beast.
Though If I had a problem with SNK its that I just find the thing to be poorly written overall. It has creative idea's, but the characters and dialogue is really weak in my eyes.
Amagi
You know that SuperSaiyan syndrome. At first it was special and mysterious, but once the second one gets to have the power they tend to pop up everywhere. Same with Claymore and basically almost every shounen ever.
Amagi
I overall like the SNK manga but I have to agree I really have a problem with this shounen trope of some speciality one character has that suddently turn out to be the speciality of many.
Lenlo
It turned from a horror/thriller to a sort of... shounen mystery thing for me. I wasnt a fan once EVERYONE became titans.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, I dropped off at that point, picked it up again and read it up to date. Now I am falling out again. True be told I haven't really got into it since the beginning chapters and I am not a fan of the direction it took. If you don't like it now I say future chapters won't really change your mind.
Lenlo
Does Attack on Titan get better? I was reading it up until Season 2 came out and then just fell off the wagon.
KTravlos
oh what a cliffhanger in the Shingeki no Koyjin manga! I am happy where this is going!
Kaiser-Eoghan
I agree that the way the series addresses emotion has some interest to it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The later chapters I read had some action in them.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Had a read of the children of the wales manga, I am glad to see a shoujo that isn't based on an otome or school life series , additionally I like it on an aesthetic level, I can see it going somewhere but the fast-forward pace makes it hakes it harder to connect with.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Blame! was recently adapted and thats cyberpunk, even if it didn't follow the manga.
Amagi
@Kaiser: Agree. Cyber- and steampunk are two of the few settings I really dig. Especially because I think that there are a lot of potential plots and twists for cyberpunk/VR settings anime haven't used yet. AR is great too, the only series about that is Dennou Coil and it was made ~10 years ago. Maybe the SAO movie but it was just a movie.
Amagi
@Aidan: Same here lol. I remember the toilet thingy but not the woman's backstory. That being said, I enjoyed the series as whole, though some parts were too K-ONish for my taste.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The idea of would agorophobia maintain itself and they'd stay inside or would the fear of being raped/tortured/killed and bypass the agorophobia ?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Random tangent, but I would find it fascinating to see a hikkikomori subject to a home invasion.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Although honestly, I would prefer a cyberpunk wave of anime series to get popular again.
silver
I too am starting to really enjoy the 'adventure anime' genre. The medium of animation is uniquely suited to fantastical worldbuilding.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Was that the one where the girl is desperately trying not to piss herself? Also why can I remember that and not this blonde woman's backstory?
SuperMario
@Kaiser: yep, agreed. It's at its best when it can use the settings to flesh out the characters. The episode after that one, one the other hand, was Sora no woto's dullest episode - where the main girl spends the whole episode waiting for a freaking phone call.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: The Blonde woman's backstory in the middle of sora no oto, that was the best episode of it.
SuperMario
@Amagi: for reccomendation, if you don't mind another cute girls in a post-apocalyptic world show, you can try Sora no Woto (Sound of the sky). I love that show to bits
Total users: 30

Featured Posts

Mahoutsukai no Yome – 3 [The Balance Distinguishes Not Between Gold and Lead]

This week, Mahoutsukai moves into a slower pace. Showing off more of its world and delving a bit deeper into magic and how it connects to the world. Lets jump in. There are two main points I want to touch on for this episode of Mahoutsukai. The first being the actual main focus of the […]

Ballroom e Youkoso – 15/16 [Taking the Reins/Four-legged]

Boy, this was really a Tale of Two Ballrooms. One of these episodes was almost certainly outsourced, based on the visual inconsistencies that extended even to key poses, but handled its character moments dutifully. The other looked markedly better than most of this show’s recent offerings, but rushed through so much material that its conclusion […]

Houseki no Kuni – 03 [Metamorphose]

It just occurred to me since I watched Bakuman (the first season of it, anyways) fairly recently, but watching Bakuman made me realize how tough it is to have your manga publicize, let alone become a popular one. For those who have watched the anime or read the manga of Bakuman, remember the early Golden […]

Girls’ Last Tour – 03 [Streetlights]

Welp, I never would have thought Girls’ Last Tour can get any better, but this week’s episode is straight up phenomenal. Episode 3 manages to make some new tricks to its well-established formula: introduces another human survivor to the mix, askes a deeper philosophical question about the meaning of life in that stark world (and […]

Inuyashiki – 2 [Hiro Shishigami]

Woe be unto thee who passes further, for today we are talking about Episode 2 of Inuyashiki! A lot happened this week. New characters, dark twists and the start of what I can only imagine is the central conflict of the season. Lets jump in! First and foremost, we need to talk about Hiro Shishigami. […]

Juuni Taisen – 03 [Cutting a Chicken with a Beef Cleaver]

I’m starting to worry about Juuni Taisen. Like what we all predicted last week, this week indeed follows a reverse zodiac order. We have Chicken served as our main POV and at the end she’s the one who get sendoff (with no small help from the episode title. What a huge spoiler). Judge by the […]

Fate/Apocrypha – 15[Differing Paths]

It’s funny that only now, when we are well into the halfway point of the series that it takes some time to flesh out its cast. Sisgou has gotten some backstory, Fiore was fleshed out a little and even Gordes got some time to prove he’s not a complete caricature. The last one is something […]

Kino’s Journey -The Beautiful World- – 02[Colosseum]

In an odd turn of events, the second episode of Kino’s Journey 2017 is a retelling of a story done in the original 2003 version. Where Kino is forced to participate in deathmatches upon reaching a country. I find this choice odd as I would consider the Colosseum story in the original to be the […]

Dies Irae – 02[Twilight Girl]

There may be those of you who ask why I would cover this series despite it’s rather disastrous prequel episode. Even I will not be attempting to defend this adaption as I sorely believe it will be rather poor indeed. But when you truly think about it, isn’t it the case that I would be […]

Latest Reviews

The Reflection Review – 45/100

The superhero genre has been undergoing a surge in popularity in recent years. From the Marvel movies in the West to anime series like My Hero Academia in the East, super heroes are everywhere.  As such, for good or ill, it was inevitable that we would get a merging of the two. The Reflection is […]

Made in Abyss Review – 91/100

There are few series which can capture the mystery and wonder of a fantasy world as well as Made in Abyss. Their world is dangerous, brutal and unforgiving but beautiful, wondrous and exciting in it’s presentation. The story is of a ordinary girl called Riko and a mysterious cyborg boy called Regu traveling down the […]

Classroom of the Elite (Summer 2017) Review – 54/100

Here’s a perfect example of a Light Novel adaptation schlock that has some interesting concept but terrible presentation. Youkoso usually starts the episode with a thought-provoking philosophical quote, and then (in one episode in particular) they followed up with a boob shot. It sums up exactly how I feel about this show. In service for […]

18if (Summer 2017) Review – 68/100

Allow me to skip over the last episode coverage for this full review of 18if, since I was too underwhelmed by the finale to have anything concrete except pointing out how messy the ending was. The first thing you need to know about 18if is that it’s a multimedia project (along with a mobile game […]

Princess Principal (Summer 2017) Review – 82/100

Princess Principal has emerged as a true sleeper hit for this admittedly sloppy Summer Season. A joint project from indie studios that bring us my favorite anime of last year Flip Flappers (3Hz) and “better than it has any right to be” Girls und Panzer (Actas), Princess Principal records the missions of five cute spy […]

Shingeki no Bahamut: Virgin Soul Review 80/100

“Dance!” I have been a  reader of this blog for a long time. Indeed it would not be wrong to say that psgels and the current crop of writers have helped maintain my interest in anime for the last decade. So now here is my chance to give something back to this excellent blog. Shingeki […]

Katsugeki Touken Ranbu Review – 63/100

Every Anime season we the viewers are shown a number of adaptations, often made after Light or Visual Novels. It’s an already written story with an established base, a smart business decision. In recent years studios have also begun pulling from the Video Game market for their shows. Pieces like the Idolmaster series, Kantai Collection […]

Kakegurui Review – 61/100

This show is one that makes conventional reviewing difficult as your enjoyment of your series will likely determine on highly subjective factors. For if I was to put this under scrutiny on matters of f-plot, setting and characters then it will end up lacking in all categories. The plot is just watching Yumeko face members […]

Re:Creators – 22 [Re:CREATORS] – 75/100

There was never going to be a epic fight with every creation squaring off against the overpowered and invincible Altair. That possibility died when the creators threw the copycat of Blank at her only to have that plan backfire horribly. Besides, it wouldn’t have been a satisfying conclusion to Altair’s story to have her be […]