Posted on 17 April 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Wotaku ni Koi wa Muzukashii

Short Synopsis: Two childhood friends-turned-coworkers decide to start dating after bonding over their nerdy hobbies.

Aidan’s review

Well they added more original scenes to the manga but it fit and helped the story flow better and while this could be considered pandering to my demographic, I ultimately enjoyed the hell out of it. I stated before that 3D Kanojo was the idealisation of love while Wotaku is the more realistic version and that certainly is still true. The dialogue of this show feels real and the characters talk like people talk. Sure there is comedic posturing and some exaggeration but damn do the conversations just flow naturally. No beating around the bush either as our two mains get together by episodes end in what may be considered spontaneous and a bit too businesslike. I found it actually better that way. There is no bombastic orchestra nor emotional crying or doves flying in the air with dramatic lighting while flowers fall on the stage. The male lead lays down how he could make for a good boyfriend and the two decide to try it out. Which is fine, as the two do get along fantastic together and that could very easily blossom into love. The comedy was on point, the cast is good and it’s generally fluffy. Of course being an adult nearing his thirties who is a Anime and Game Otaku and works in a office space could be influencing my opinion somewhat.

Potential: 75%

 

Wooper’s review

I’ve seen a lot of talk about this show pandering to a specific subculture, what with the “otaku and fujoshi together 4ever” romance at its core. As a result, I went into this thing with the mildest of expectations, and found that they were unnecessarily low. Wotakoi obviously has its sights set on a niche audience, but it isn’t insulting about it. There are no women tripping over themselves to get with the male lead, and the show doesn’t glamorize or excuse pop culture obsession – rather, it’s a source of shame for the female MC. She’s pretty, a little ditzy, and cheerily superficial, which is refreshing for a woman in anime. Her blossoming friendship with her cosplaying boss gives me some hope that she’ll learn to be more accepting, both of herself and others, without needing to be educated or tamed by her new boyfriend. As a matter of fact, I’m much more interested in how her mindset will change than I am in her relationship with The Most Dapper Otaku in the World. The scene where those two get together is the main source of my disappointment in this premiere – the show looks decent, and I like the characters well enough, but the dispassionate way they decide to start dating left me with no interest in their romance. It happened right at the tail end of the episode, so it might be some kind of fake out, but given that Wotakoi is billed as a romcom, I doubt that’ll be the case. The show seems good enough to follow week by week, but if no legitimate sense of attraction surfaces within a few episodes, I might have to bail.

Potential: 50%

 

Hisone to Maso-tan

Short Synopsis: A woman is chosen to pilot a living Dragon

Aidan’s review

I wasn’t quite sure what I would get when I started this show but it certainly was a lot more comedic than I was expecting. So far any potential dark aspects are nowhere to be seen  and it’s a fairly lighthearted show to match it’s cutesy visuals. I quite like the main character and her general talkativeness as I am reminded of my own inner thoughts when pushed into a project haphazardly at work. We got a kooky cast of characters and the general premise of a transforming dragon in the army is a good one. It’s still up in the air as to what the actually plot will be but for so far it’s looking quite strong.

Potential: 80%

 

Mario’s review

As they say, save the best for last huh? This one literally was the last show I checked out during this First Impression period, with high expectation to boost, and it turned out even better than I had expected. There’s so much to like about this show. The style for example, is simple with clear and soft layout, but it works well in service for this show. Contrary to the simple designs, the characters are expressive and the animation is very consistent and dynamic. The concept of dragons being an airplane, with pilot is inside the dragon is a whimsical, if a bit nonsensical, premise and I am glad that in this first episode not only the show doesn’t take it too seriously, they sell well on the whole concept. The main girl, Hisone, is your typical Mari Osada’s creation here- meaning she has a tendency to say her mind a bit too much, but I do relate to her issues and hell, I already love the pairing between her and the dragon here. This one is, for my money, the best premiere of this Spring Season.

Potential: 90%

 

Full Metal Panic Invisible Victory

Short Synopsis: The fourth season of the Full Metal Panic Series

Aidan’s review

Well baring a opening scene where the pacing felt a bit too fast, this was a strong return to form. The skipped volume 6 which is a shame as it had some good Tessa moments but otherwise the relationship between Chidori and Sousuke was great. Seeing them hold hands as they both walked to her apartment and be affectionite with each other felt it was a long time coming. Of course we do have some interesting developments in how Chidora has to accept that she really can’t live a normal life anymore as well as the fact that no matter how much of a goof Sousuke is, he really has killed people. Sousuke himself seems to be regretting the loss of his school life as well and Chidori’s newfound caution of him certainly could throw him off balance. Little in the way of action but the ending episode cliffhanger is certainly promising. Xebec certainly seems to be emulating the animation style of KyoAni’s while they were doing Second Raid and so far it looks good. Still up for debate if they can keep the quality for the full series and especially during  action sequences but we shall see. Lastly I find the Japanese voices hard to adjust to due to my first experience watching being in English dub. Basically if you are a Full Metal Panic Fan, check this out.

Potential: 80%

 

Dorei-ku The Animation

Short Synopsis: A girl finds out about a device that allow you to enslave anyone

Aidan’s review

I guess the big question is that if such a device existed, who in their right mind would use it? Sure it allows you to dominate someone else with the device but at the same time holds the risk of anyone subjecting you to eternal servitude. In that case it would be a hard sell because if a girl tried to convince me to stick in some weird device into my mouth my first and last instinct would be no. Of course since the characters in this show are naturally stupid, they stick the device in. All these characters are terrible and unlikable. The games themselves aren’t so much mind games cause the author isn’t smart enough to come up with genuine smart strategy. The animation is bear bones and while the anime cut out quite a bit of the stupid nasty stuff in the manga, it still can’t save what is already a fairly trash story. Avoid this one.

Potential: 0%

 

Mario’s review

The segment in the first few minutes pretty much sets an overall tone to this series: a silly card game where the girl loses, the guy then requests to have sex with her in which she has to obey. This is a show that is more interested to exploit the twisted desire of enslave someone (in a fetish form) than it has anything grounded to say. So for anyone who think this show is a depiction of BDSM fetish, there isn’t much about it at all, given it gives the same “descend to darkness through desire” vibe as Kakegurui and Liar Game, although with much lesser impact. Sexual assault, assholeness, misogyny pops up everywhere. The duel isn’t remotely exciting since only one of them aware of the SCM device, hence they obviously have an handicap over the opponent. The main leads, if we can call them that, are characters that we don’t care one iota for because they are unlikable, and their chemistry isn’t even functional. It might be just me but this kind of trashy pulpy show that tries hard to sound smart always turn me off the most. Avoid it.

Potential: 0%

Posted on 16 April 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

For the first time in a very long while, the writers of Star Crossed Anime Blog have assembled together from over five different timezone and participate in a podcast that gives our first impressions of the Spring 2018 anime season.

The intro for this episode is from the intro theme for Ragnarok Online 2 by Yoko Kanno. The outro for this episode is Deja Vu by Dave Rodgers.

Anime Discussed In This First Impressions: Persona 5, Legend of the Galactic Heroes, Wotakoi Love Is Hard For Otaku, Hisone to Maso-tan, Golden Kamuy, Magical Girl Site,  Hinamatsuri, Megalo Box, Steins Gate 0, My Hero Academia 3, Tokyo Ghoul re, Sword Art Online Alternative Gun Gale Online, Full Metal Panic Invisible Victory, Lupin III: Part V

Edited by HelghastKillzone

Posted on 14 April 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Steins;Gate 0

Short Synopsis: An alternate timeline where Okabe never concluded Steins;Gate

Aidan’s review

If you are a fan of Steins;Gate, then you are watching this so it’s wonder if a impression is even needed. But regardless we can say this is a very strong start for the series, in fact it feels just the same as when you left it despite the new director. There is at least issues that this episode was spent mostly recapping the situation so that the audience is up to speed and characters have gone through a redesign which may annoy people. In particular Mayuri seems to have gone up a few cup sizes between Steins;Gate and now. But this is a first episode that recaptures the spirit of the original and in particular Okabe’s PTSD scenes was masterfully done. Of course what comes after this could go any way but having played the game I feel Steins;Gate fans will be satisfied if it is adapted well.

Potential: 90%

 

Lenlo’s Review:

I’m in. I’ve been ready for this since Steins;Gate ep 23 B aired years ago. Recap aside, since it was necessary with how long we have had between seasons, Kenichi Kawamura knocked it out of the park with this first episode. Okabe is suitably muted and depressed, the soundtrack is on point and Steins;Gate 0 is wasting no time getting us involved in the plot. There are some stylistic differences that may bug some people, like how every girl went up a few cup sizes since the first Steins;Gate, but overall it just feels like the original in every way that matters. I am ready for the darkest timeline Kenichi, don’t let me down.

Potential: 95%

 

Last Period -Owarinaki Rasen no Monogatari-

Short Synopsis: a gang of heroes (known as Periods) finds out that their beloved branch office has been closed so they have to work cheaply to support the office.

Lenlo’s Review:

Last Period knows exactly what it is, a bright, sugary monster of the week show. We even have our own version of Team Rocket to cause fun, solvable hijinks every week. Last Period is the kind of anime you can sit down and watch and just relax. There’s no big message, no great symbolism or theme. It’s just a simple show for simple folk and it works. The thing about shows like this though, you either lovem or you hatem. If your looking for something to sit down at after a day at work or school and just want to enjoy to anime, you could do a lot worse than Last Period.

Potential: 50%

 

Mario’s review

Generic is all I can utter here. This show intends to be a parody of sort of RPG-styled fantasy shows, but I’m hard pressed to regard it as parody since it’s weak on humors. I appreciate how the characters themselves point out tropes and cliches, but they do nothing but acknowledge and embrace these tropes. This “doesn’t take itself seriously” nature also means that the story is random at most, characters fight without much purpose, thus the show feels significantly lightweight, like a short OVA spoofs you would see from popular shows. Characters are lame and the production values are on the lackluster side. Not worth your time is my final verdict.

Potential: 0%

 

Butlers ~Chitose Momotose Monogatari~

Short Synopsis: A guy is on a mission to find his missing sister.

Lenlo’s Review:

Every season we get a “Cute Girls doing Cute Things” show. Whether it be cat girls, horse girls, maid girls, or whatever Keijo was. However in its quest for equality, Butlers is breaking ground in a “new”, “unique” genre called “Beautiful Men doing Beautiful Things”. We have the whole cast. The Shota jail-bait, the Androgynous Aloof one, the Cocky Jerk one and even the emotionally dead main character with no reason to actually be there. Truly cutting edge. There’s only one problem with Butlers. That Ouran Host Club did it already and did it better. Butlers is a mish mash, trying to be the new Ouran Host Club, while missing everything that made Host Club even mildly interesting. With how great this season is so far, my only recommendation for Butlers is Skip It and if you need your Shojo fix, rewatch/checkout Ouran Host Club.

Potential: 0%

 

Mario’s review

People can call this an overambitious premiere with that final hook, for me it’s just an incompetent show that makes up the plot as it goes so that they can cram in as many hot boys as humanly possible. This episode we have about ten to dozen boys introduced, none of them carry any distinctive feature (and curiously enough, one of them named Akira Tachibana. I sure have missed her). That lack of personality extends to our main character, J, who most of the time feels like he doesn’t belong to this world. Towards the end we find out the reason but the issues still remain that it’s boring. The pacing sucks big time as we see him spend majority of the time doing activities as a president of student council and how the hell these activities have anything to do with the main plot of him being a “butler” trying to find his dear sister? It’s the show that can’t decide what it wants to be and thus, it doesn’t belong anywhere in this present world.

Potential: 0%

Posted on with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Rokuhoudou Yotsuiro Biyori

Short Synopsis: An office worker finds a cafe full of hot guys

Aidan’s review
Oh sure. There is definitely a cafe in the middle of a Japanese city with a prefect scenic view, a staff full of hot guys who are passionate about their work despite being paid diddly squat, the sells five star food and to top it off is mostly quiet and deserted. Certainly this cafe isn’t the product of pure wish fulfillment and pandering to a female audience. Alright the obvious lengths this show goes to ignore that it’s premise is utterly unrealistic aside this is a decently watchable show. Considering I generally tap out on these kinds of shows due to having no interest whatsoever, I at least found I was able to watch it and not be too bored. But honestly how the hell was that guy able to randomly pick up some kid to help out a woman? Attempt that in real life regardless of your looks and I am certain first response would involve the police. The story is nothing new seeing as it has no real story and is just about people coming to this cafe to chill out. I say for those who take a liking to these kinds of shows this could be something worthwhile but otherwise I say this isn’t really worth your time.

Potential: 10%

 

Mario’s review

Shows about hot boys are my eternal nemesis, plus the fact that Rokuhoudou sets in a cafe that provides good food and give people good time and I’m certain stepping in that it isn’t the show for me. It’s a healing show and not a terrible one all things considered, but one where I personally can’t connect to on an personal level. The four guys are all archetypal characters and they’re just way too perfect in the way that make them unreal. The shop has a nice kind of atmosphere, but again, when the food, the coffee, the sweet and the service are all top-notch, it’s hard to take it at face value. For those who – similar to the appeal of this titular cafe – prefer a relaxing and comforting time, this might be a good breather. Strangely enough, healing anime is one of my favorite genre, but this type of healing doesn’t attract me at all. Not one bit.

Potential: 0% or Not one bit

 

Shiyan Pin Jiating

Short Synopsis: A dysfunctional family of mutants goes out for a meal.

Wooper’s review

A lot of modern anime cut corners by using CG animation for complex objects or heavy scenes. Shiyan Pin Jiating takes a more honest route – it cuts corners by including fewer frames than any other spring series. Part of that is its shorter runtime, but based on what I saw in those 15 minutes, full-length episodes wouldn’t prevent it from looking cheap. Even the simplest actions, like a sigh or the wave of a hand, are jerky and unnatural. There’s a fair bit of hitching during dialogue-heavy scenes, as well, where characters take pauses that don’t fit the conversation. A premiere this technically deficient needs to excel elsewhere to make up for its shortcomings, and while I wouldn’t say this show really excels in any department, it has one redeeming quality: its character designs. This is a show about siblings who functioned as their parents’ science experiments, so the way their quirks are physically portrayed is important, and this episode delivered with a nice blend of cute and strange designs. The half-dog older brother best exemplifies what I’m talking about, but Spider Girl and Ms. Photosynthesis are plenty charming, as well. The family drama in this premiere was boring and badly-acted, so if you’re looking for something meaningful I’d dodge this one, but if you care more about nice-looking characters than anything else, you might dig it.

Potential: 10%

 

Mario’s review

Shiyan Pin Jiating is another output from our neighbor China, so your first instinct should be approach it with caution. This looks a bit promising than the other Chinese titles, consider that the core members have some sort of characteristics… at least on paper. In practice though, I’m still not convinced about this cast. Each of them has their own unique personality and features, yes, and the core concept about the band of misfits try to live a normal life as a family has some potential, but so far I see little chemistry between them. We follow these siblings’ antics through the eye of the only “normal” character – a la straight man’s trope, and its fault is that it focuses too much on him that the other characters don’t have time to interact with each other. Might be that’s the show’s point, but when it tries for more serious tone, the manner lacks subtlety and fails miserably. The production is lackluster, with some off-model moments despite being shorter than normal-length episode and speaking of that, was that just my screen or they change the aspect ratio towards the end? If so, why? It serves no purpose whatsoever. Still feel a long way until Chinese products can get my seal of approval, it appears.

Potential: 20%

 

Sword Art Online Alternative: Gun Gale Online

Short Synopsis: Teams battle with guns in a Sword Art Online game.

Lenlo’s Review:

One might think that, with SAO in its name, SAO Alt would have all the same problems as its prodigal parent. However there is a key difference between SAO and SAO Alt. Namely, the writers. This more than anything else gives me hope for SAO Alt. We replace Jesus-kun with LLENN who treads a fine line between cute and dangerous, who is also the avatar of a soft-spoken housewife and has an actual personality. We replace screaming and meaningless stats with 20 minutes of careful planning and well explained tactics. And most of all, since this isn’t a death game, characters are allowed to fail and lose, because its not permanent. It all comes together to make me, for once excluding the Mothers Rosaria arc, care for SAO. So far, one episode in, SAO Alt is what I wanted the original SAO to be. An anime about gaming, with characters who game and actual rules that need to be followed. The only thing that makes me even a little nervous about it, is the SAO in the name.

Potential: 70%

 

Mario’s review

I am not much a fan of the original SAO. For me it got dull fast after the first arc, so I came to this Alternative with mild expectation. Turned out I enjoy this Alternative version with gun and shit way better than the original. This episode reminds me the fun of planning out, using all sort of strategies in FPS games, in particular. LLEN is a fun main lead to follow, both because of her remarks and because she walks the fine line between moe girl and badass (something that 3Hz studio is specialize of, previously handled Flip Flappers and Princess Principal). I’m not entirely sold on the dynamic between her and M yet, mostly because all they talk is about strategy, but I expect that there will be more members joining this team and let’s see what is the overarching arc of this series. Maybe this spin-off will focus more on real-life vs game aspect and I’m all on it if that’s the case. Production-wise this one is pretty solid: nice sound editing (the bullets blasting around never sound better) and when it counts, the animation is a delight to watch. I’ll be down to watch few more episodes of this, mostly because I can’t get enough of LLEN cutey pink outfit in a freaking battlefield.

Potential: 50%

Posted on 13 April 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Golden Kamuy

Short Synopsis: An unlikely duo decides to hunt down a treasure map that is tattooed on prisoners backs.

Aidan’s review

Speaking of premise only this show wins a lot of points. Set in the 1900’s, in the northern snowy wilds of Hokkaido with a story that pulls no punches with gore and violence and not a teenager in sight. The two main characters work well and the dark implications of them hunting down people in order to kill and skin them is certainly morally questionable and interesting. This first episode sets up the main goal of the plot well and for the most part is executed well to boot. So I would be giving this 90 to 100 percent potential if not for one thing. One giant glaring fly in the ointment. Those bloody cgi bears. I don’t know what the director was thinking but he decided to make the bears in this series look photorealistic. So while looking objectively the animation of the bear was fine, the way it was made to look photorealistic is one of the most jarring things I have ever seen. I did a double take every time one of these bears was on screen. They are laughably, utterly out of place. And yes this was an intentional choice by the director because he wanted them to look alien and scary. Gunning for the uncanny valley effect. As this episode showed a perfectly decent CGI wolf. You may be thinking that it’s only an issue for this episode but from what I hear this series will have a lot of furry animals and definitely more bears. So that Director better change his tune on how he wants to portray them. But yes, ignore the giant CGI abominations and this show is one to keep an eye on.

Potential: 80%

 

Lenlo’s Review:

A good treasure hunt story is always welcome, and Golden Kamuy has started strong. Not only do our leads have to find the treasure, they have to hunt down the maps themselves. I love the premise of the map being tattooed on people. It forces conflict into what otherwise could have been a serene trek through the mountains. Our leads work well together, though Asirpa seems emotionally stunted, though her hard-line morals should prove interesting. Sugimoto also plays the brash soldier who can’t leave the war behind well. Aside from the CGI bear, which was just terrible, the actual designs are good to. Overall, I am happy with Golden Kamuy and it did enough in the first episode to make me stick with it for a while.

 

Potential: 70%

 

Piano no Mori (TV)

Short Synopsis: Two young music lovers bond over a mysterious piano in a nearby forest that only one of them can play.

Mario’s review

In preparation for this show, I actually watched the 2007 movie version so I have some kind of prior knowledge, as well as expectation, for this TV series version. So far it’s a smooth ride, but there are still some worries I have for the show, especially when it comes to production aspect. Fukushima Gainax certainly isn’t the studio that shouts confidence given they have no track record whatsoever and indeed some of its issues can be seen here. The character designs are unremarkable, the series looks quite stiff as a whole and most unappealing factor, the awkward and obvious CG animation during the piano playing scenes. Story-wise, it progresses with confident and this premiere already laid out many important seeds between Kai, the new kid and the teacher. We know just about enough about these characters so that we have a reason to care, at the same time there’s still much more room for development. Even though I feel the show sacrifices Shuuhei’s personality (he comes off a bit weak compare to the movie counterpart), I do feel the amount of developments we have is balanced and well-planted. Only other thing I’m worried about is how far this show will adapt considering its 1-cour length. Based on the first few minutes I guess they will adapt the manga until these kids grow up, which mean they will have to burn a lot of material to get there. Not necessary a bad thing if it’s done right, though.

Potential: 70%

 

Wooper’s review

Piano no Mori is a charming, unassuming piece of work. Based on a manga that’s nearly 20 years old, it could almost be described as quaint – after all, there aren’t any superpowers, it isn’t set in a high school, and nobody is trapped in a video game. In lieu of all that, the series focuses on a couple of elementary school kids who love the piano, one of whom has the mysterious ability to play a broken one that was abandoned in the forest (okay, I guess there are superpowers). They quickly become friends, but their music teacher takes a much stronger shine to forest boy, which I assume will be the genesis of whatever conflict develops between them. This premiere had the look of a kids show, but that’s not a bad thing; given that the characters start as children, it’s appropriate that we see their world the same way they would. I’d describe the series as expressive, even during the CG piano-playing scenes, which I found to be perfectly appropriate. They exist only to depict the performance aspect of the show as accurately as possible, and they do a nice job of it. My one gripe comes from a small passage in the middle of the episode, which glosses over an important day at school in favor of going right back into the forest for more bonding between the two main kids. This decision was so jarring that it has me worried about the rest of the series, which may try to cram too many volumes’ worth of story into just 12 episodes. Without having seen the 2007 movie that Mario mentioned above, I’d say that’s a safer bet than the TV version, but this should still be one of the better offerings this season.

Potential: 60%

 

Juushinki Pandora

Short Synopsis: An exiled scientist does science-y things and fights against a biomechanical mutant crab.

Wooper’s review

When animating a story with a silly premise like this one, where a worldwide evolution field causes plants and animals to fuse with artificial intelligence, every aspect of its production needs to be rock solid so people can take it seriously. In the case of Juushinki Pandora, every aspect of its production is laughably bad. The dialogue is mostly technobabble, featuring such gems as, “Hyperdrive is now in overdrive mode” – try saying that five times fast without dying of shame. The show is visually unappealing on every level, from its human cast to its mech and monster designs. Stupid anime hair abounds, and the combat scenes are plagued with jerky CG models that lumber weightlessly through vomit-colored backgrounds (a few of which were computerized themselves). As for the characters as individuals, they’re void of all personality. The show tries to establish a tenuous bond between its brilliant scientist MC and his younger sister, but can’t manage it without the help of a “family contract,” which is constantly brought up as a reminder that even though they argue a lot, they’re still a family. Everybody else pilots a robot and talks incomprehensibly about some shit you can’t understand because nothing that’s happening on screen makes sense. But hey, the show has a cat with a mustache and some lady with big tits, plus it’s a NETFLIX ORIGINAL SERIES (HOLY SHIT), so you’d better watch it, you anime-loving, streaming service-obeying drone.

Potential: None whatsoever

 

Mario’s review

Farewell comrade Conrad, you deserve better.

In case you wonder who the hell Conrad is, he’s the side character that died even before we hear his voice, let alone knowing what he looked like and what his favorite food was, yet his name is the only name I remembered after watching this show. That should tell you plenty about the level of quality of this blah-blah-blah Pandora. “Disaster” is the word that totally sums up how I feel about this show, as it has nothing that I could recommend on. Characters, like I said, are bunch of cardboard models with weird hairdo that have no personality whatsoever. Worst of all is our main character who love to experiment random things (including his food), speaking in incomprehensive terms and run around his base naked. And did I mention that he has a little sister who watches over him (naked)? He’s so bad that he makes a generic imouto character feel like an angel in comparison. The production is pretty crap as well. Nothing interesting going on with just robots fighting and spilling acid aimlessly and the story grabs me like a fly sting – which is to say nothing. I’m running out of lame remarks so let’s me just wrap it up by saying: this show is garbage.

Potential: 0%

Posted on 12 April 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Nil Admirari no Tenbin – Teito Genwaku Kitan

Short Synopsis: A girl joins a group of pretty boys that search for cursed books

Aidan’s review

I will give credit where credit is due and say that this certainly is better than what I usually expect from an Otome adaption. But better as in only slightly. The same problems are here, the main character is too bland, we have a boy band cast of stereotypical pretty boy Otome tropes and they all have an interest in the main character because she has some super special power that was handed to her from birth. The cursed tome aspect could be somewhat interesting but both the Opening and Ending sing a clear tune of “Look at these boys, aren’t they neat? Which of them should I get in my sheets?” I am fully expecting this to go downhill fast with the second episode.

Potential: 10%

 

Mario’s review

One thing that really irks me towards this first episode of Nil Admirari is the misfired usage of dramatic effects. Why rely on such obvious technique when you can convey the same thing more subtle? It’s an otome game adaptation so naturally we have a team of hot boys with no personality here. Gosh, this genre and boy idol shows are my kryptonite. It sucks out my energy and my ability to think clearly. Otome adaptation, on the other hand, can boost a good central female character who can think independently and if they use the tropes right, it could serve as a serviceable reverse-harem show. This show certainly has none of the latter, but the lead girl has some pretty solid development here. Her issues with her brother is nothing stellar, but what makes her character work is what comes after. She constantly blames herself and eventually comes to term with it (I particularly like the visual metaphor of her getting herself bleed by the thorn of the roses. In your face I know but it speaks right to her mentality there).  Another little thing I like about this show is the setting of old Japan in early 20th century. While I do like the concept of “cursed tomes” being the books that can possess people, although the implication so far of that neat idea is tenuous. It’s more as a basis for the team of hot guys and gals performs their cool jobs. As it turns out, I enjoy many little extra ingredients, but the main ones: the cases, the reverse-harem and THOSE BOYS turn me off. As such I think this one will turn out mild and serviceable at best.

Potential: 20%

 

Caligula

Short Synopsis: A boy finds his reality breaking apart after he listens to an idol song

Aidan’s review

Girl, Johari’s window isn’t complex psychology, it’s just that this guy sucks at explaining it. Also myopia is nearsightedness and as someone with myopia I can tell you that I don’t need a long winded analogy about a fish tank to explain that to people. Weirdly while I stated that you would be better off watching Persona instead of this, this episode was actually was much better than persona was. Up until the last few minutes I was legitimately interested. I mean sure the main character is a hipster dumbass who thinks he’s a psychologist because he looked up some wikipedia articles but the general disjointed nature of his reality was quite intriguing. Why did his female friends mother go from dangerously thin to beautifully young? Why do people act zombielike whenever the MC brings up the topic of his inconsistencies with reality? Up until the last few minutes I was considering watching beyond the first episode on personal curiosity. Then the video game part of this game adaption appeared with dumb looking RPG enemies popping up and what looks to be an evil idol singer. Got a firm feeling this show hit its peak with this episode and it will be all downhill from here but still that was a pretty good effort.

Potential: 30%

 

Mario’s review

Well, I certainly didn’t expect Caligula’s first episode turn out that way. Not that I think it will become a solid one, given the main meat isn’t that promising, but for this premiere alone I can offer 3 solid reasons why this episode is worth checking out. First, the blurred line between dream/reality is explored here, and while it goes for the Matrix route – which I am not entirely keen of – I’m glad to see it make good use of this conflict (I am a fan of Satoshi Kon’s works for a reason). Second, Caligula methodically creating a sense of disorienting, making viewers feel uncomfortable in the right way about something seems off in that world. I particularly like the use of “glitch” that for me feel much more uncanny than any pure horror (I hail Lain as one of my most favorite anime for a reason). Finally, the show has a good sense when it comes to scenes transition while jumping across many characters through the use of match-cuts or repeated dialogues. This is HOW you make your story flows well in visual medium so kudos for a show that based from video game that understand it. But then all these innovative points come crashing at the end with the full-blown action that makes me scratching my head. The main lead is one of the worst lead of this season so far, always spouting philosophical nonsense every chance he opens his mouth that it’s irritating to hear and based from the direction at the end, I feel the first episode was just one-off occurrence and the story will be more conventional from now on. Which is a real shame since this first episode totally grabbed my attention.

Potential: 60% for this episode alone and 30% for the real potential.

 

Cutie Honey Universe

Short Synopsis: An Android girl called Cutie honey fights off an evil organization

Aidan’s review

How am I to judge this show. It certainly has a lot of yuri, and not yuri undertones, more like actual yuri. This is Go Nagai at his most shameless and I find myself in two minds over it. Certainly the story has not aged well at all and is trashy as all hell. Yet it is a manga that inspired a lot of future works, most notably the famous Sailor Moon. Much like Sailor Moon there is a certain charm to this show. It’s bright, colourful, ridiculous and poppy. Though it seems a lot of people are quite angry that they changed the Opening theme that Cutie Honey has had for every single interaction of her show. Having watched that opening I admit that it’s catchy tune would have been perfect for cashing in on nostalgia. Still this seems like a warts and all kind of reboot when I feel the better option would be the route of Devilman Crybaby which took the material and adapted it for a new audience. Still I might watch this for cultural reference….I swear I am not watching for the boobs.

Potential: 40%

 

Mario’s review

Welcome to the trashiest anime show of the season. There are two qualities of this updated version that carry on the spirit of uncle Go Nagai’s works: flashy and horny. The level of fanservice is up to the max: with horny girls kissing each other, fighting that results in Honey nearly shredding her clothes, bondage as a punishment and so on so forth. To be fair, the show embraces those fan-services so passionately and energetically that it’s hard to fault them for that. It looks exactly like the kind of entertainment came out 30 years ago, with more over the top and surprisingly well-made production. Story is told in bare minimum, the dialogues are full of nonsense (glaring example: “sure take gall to do that in the middle of the afternoon”) and even Honey is just there to fight sexy busty Thundercat copycats in her gym suit, but nevermind since we all know what we’re here for: to watch Honey fights sexy busty Thundercat copycats in her gym suit. And for that I would argue there’s inherently nothing wrong with a show that understands – and is proud of – its own DNA.

Potential: 30%

Posted on 10 April 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

MAJOR 2nd

Short Synopsis: A kid who loves baseball is frustrated when he realizes he can never match his famous father.

Aidan’s review
I am still with the kid on this. He tried baseball but found he didn’t have the talent for it. He worked hard and it still didn’t get him anywhere. Even if he keep it on for fun he would be constantly compared to his father. So yeah why can’t he just take a different path from his father? When his sister started getting on his case about not “meeting his parents expectations” I honestly think she was way out of line. True the kid needs a new hobby to motivate him and he ain’t got to to meet his parents expectations. If anything they are the reason for his pain in the first place considering they literally groomed their children for baseball. And from the look of things people are gonna push him into baseball whether he likes it or not. Not sure what else to say here. It’s a mediocre sports series hampered by myself having no interest whatsoever in baseball. Nothing groundbreaking but some might get some enjoyment out of it.
Potential: 10%

Mario’s review
Major 2nd certainly feels old-school here. Not only the settings, or its being a spin-off of the popular franchise Major, but also in its storytelling. The main storyline is fairly predictable and straight-forward. The kid realizes that he can’t never be as good as his father so he quits sports altogether. But to its credit, that simple story is told well with confident beat. We have time to see his fire-up to come to baseball team for the first time, his disappointment and then his frustration towards the poor results and then we see how this experience shapes the way he is 2 years later. Apart from the narrative though, the production is unremarkable with little animation and bland character designs. Major 2nd also strucks me that they use the same universe and reuses many characters from its original series, down to the fact that the new kid comes at the end turn out to be the son of Daigo’s best teammate. Okay, it’s Boruto all over again here. Its notch from the original is too apparent that I wonder if this show has what it takes to stand on its own, let alone being a better version compare to its original.
Potential: 20%

 

Devil’s Line

Short Synopsis: A girl gets romantically involved with a vampire half breed.

Aidan’s review
There is something uncanny about the faces of the background characters in this. Especially the main characters friend, that girl has seen some shit. Indeed there are odd animation choices here, such as jacking up the frame rate to show super speed which just looks oh so very wrong. Well my general opinion of the source still stands here, it’s a show about vampires that does nothing new and just rethreads old territory. We got a vampire romance that pretty much starts with sexual assault and the setting is basically tokyo ghoul except with Vampires. The main character is boring and I hate the male lead for being an emo hipster. Nothing really to see here.
Potential: 0%

Mario’s review
What’s up with the ridiculous frame rate during the vampire’s action sequences? I can understand why they do that but it looks cheap and amateurish in practice. And it makes no sense whatsoever when the police’s scenes have such quick frame, too. I don’t buy this vampire’s version at all. Not only the concept of vampire amongst the human have been done to death before, this one also adds a sexual desire from vampire to human’s blood, which again makes very little sense. The show interprets the word “bloodlust’ quite literally here, but they mention the killer vampire leaves his semen to the crime scenes, I was seriously confused. So is that nutrition or is that reproduction you were aiming for, mister killer vampire? Story-wise, it isn’t good either. This episode focuses on the relationship between two characters who we literally just spend few minutes knowing them, neither of them I care about. The flashback doesn’t do anything either. If they have spent like 4 episode worth of content between the two, then this flashback can have some impact. As of this, the only thing I know about this unfortunate dude is that he’s a creep and he kills girls randomly, thus it’s only natural that I feel taken aback towards its conclusion. I can’t relate to the new formed relationship between the girl and our main guy, in addition. If your best friend that you know for a certain period of time turned out like that, how the hell could you trust this new vampire guy? Devils’ Line offers me absolutely nothing as a result.
Potential: 0%

 

PERSONA5 the Animation

Short Synopsis: A kid inherits the blood of a super-thief

Aidan’s review
Unlike Mario below I was able to follow the goings on of this episode though that was likely helped by my familiarity with the series. For someone with no experience I can certainly see how this anime could be rather confusing. There is a definitely a sense that the pacing is moving too fast and we are given little time to warm up to the characters before being tossed into one of Persona’s levels. The main character has the problem of being a blank stale for the player and I would hope they at least give him the level of snark Persona 4’s protag had in his aadaption. Overall I am reminded of Persona 4 the animation where it felt it was making compromises in order to make the story work as a anime. I am curious to the story and this odd phantom thief motive but I plan on experiencing those through the game so this isn’t on my watch list. For fans of the game I would say it could be a decent watch but for those unfamiliar with it I would say the game is a much better alternative.
Potential: 30%

Mario’s review
What an incoherent mess this episode was. The narrative is all over the place that even the first episode focuses on one character, I still can’t figure out the timelines this character is in. I know it’s a video game adaptation and so it’s hard to translate the game format to the more straightforward narrative such as anime, but jumping up and down through multiple timelines like this make it extremely hard for first-time viewers (like myself) to care. And I don’t have any reason to care, either, given the main protagonist is as bland as unseasoned chicken, moreover his personality is pretty inconsistent during this first episode. The visual style is admittedly strong and stylish. You can see its strong grasp of visual execution during its first five minutes and this version of “The Velvet Room” has a lot of personality there (the Velvet Room has been a motif of the Persona Game franchise, but this particular version reminds me a lot to David Lynch’s universe – “This is a girl” I heard someone whispered faintly). In general, these stylish visuals couldn’t save this show from its confusing story and weak characters. Another skip for me.
Potential: 10%

Posted on 9 April 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Gurazeni

Short Synopsis: A relief pitcher is unexpectedly called on to be a starter in a money-obsessed baseball league.

Lenlo’s Review:

Gurazeni’s word of the season is, budget. A budget One Outs for the modern day. The first episode of Gurazeni is an info-dump and fails to establish anything about the main character or the series conflict. It goes to lengths to try and show how everything revolves around money, how desperate the main character is for it and the cutthroat world of baseball. Yet the bright colors, the music and general style takes away from that completely. Compare that to One Outs from ~10 years ago, where you knew the value of every pitch. Where the lead had an established personality, motivation and relationships in the first episode. Where even the lead’s design informs you to his personality. Really, what I am trying to say is this. Skip Gurazeni, watch One Outs instead. Go find it on YouTube. To this day, it is one of my favorite sports anime and without a doubt my favorite Baseball one.

Potential: 0%

 

Wooper’s review

The going is still early, but this will probably finish as the most disappointing of all the shows I watch this spring. Gurazeni is a well-respected baseball manga, but Studio DEEN clearly lost some kind of reverse bidding war and were forced to animate this show at gunpoint. The OP takes the time to portray merchandisers, groundskeepers, commentators, and fans, hinting that the series will be about the culture of baseball, rather than just the sport. DEEN accomplished something similar with Giant Killing at the start of this decade, but their approach for this series is too narrow in scope. More than half the premiere is eaten up by the main character’s narration, most of which revolves around how his salary compares to those of other players. We hardly see him pitch, or even talk to other human beings. He does go out for drinks with an ex-teammate, but that guy’s career woes dominate the show from that point on. And when we’re actually treated to some baseball, it’s with CG players and sweeping helicopter shots of PS2-era stadiums. The show’s lousy appearance and botched first episode might be tolerable if I could tell you anything about the main character’s personality, which I can’t (other than the fact that he likes money). Just read the manga.

Potential: 0%

 

Hinamatsuri

Short Synopsis: A young girl with supernatural powers and a porcelain-collecting yakuza learn to live together.

Aidan’s review

Not quite as funny as I would have though but still a really enjoyable start for the series. Hina certainly seems like a more likeable character here, whereas in the manga she was a lot brattier. Animation is actually quite impressive and comedic timing is on point so later events and characters should work well. I somewhat miss the jokes that the scantilators of the manga would put in like “Norway!” but well there was absolutely norway they would put those in the anime. Got to wonder why they bothered to put that action scene at the beginning as it really isn’t going to become relevant for quite a while but maybe the joke is just how inconsequential it will be. Really loving the dynamic between Nitta and Hina here and the emotional scenes actually work well despite them being misleading buildups to the absurdity that happens afterwards. My big concerns for this one is that there may not be enough time to get to the really great moments of the manga though the pacing of this episode burned through three chapters. Looks great, sounds great and I had a smile on my face the whole time watching. Most definitely one to check out this season.

Potential: 80%

 

Wooper’s review

Unlike Aidan, I haven’t read the Hinamatsuri manga, so my impressions of the show’s comedy will be based not on whether it’s as funny as its source, but whether I found it funny at all. Happily enough, I did! Studio Feel did a fine job of making the show seem vibrant and kooky, though it’s clear that much of their effort was concentrated in the opening fight scene. As for the story, it centers on an Odd Couple relationship between a gentle yakuza (Nitta) and a young girl (Hina) who manipulates him with her special abilities. I’d have liked their “getting to know you” phase to have been extended a bit, but with 12 episode orders being the industry standard at this point, narrative shortcuts are expected. The show’s biggest comedic strength thus far is the injection of strange gags and visual moments into a familiar story template (adult and kid are thrust together, butt heads at first, then learn to appreciate each other). Hina’s arrival in a giant metallic egg is so strange that you can’t help but laugh at it, especially after Nitta’s attempt at ignoring it fails so horribly. The show also underscores its most heartwarming scene with a comically violent one in which Hina uses her powers to help her new friend – it’s a ridiculous set piece moment, but it comes from an earned sense of understanding between the two leads. Despite feeling a bit hurried, this is one of the better premieres of the spring thus far, and it’s certainly the funniest (intentionally, anyway).

Potential: 60%

 

Mahou Shoujo Site

Short Synopsis: A girl who is horribly bullied is given magical powers

Aidan’s review

When I sat down to watch this show I prepared myself for a rough ride. Yet despite knowing what was coming it was still a hard watch. Take note that does not mean that it was a hard watch because of some skilled writing of troublesome subject matter but instead imagine an author of poor skill trying to write a Madoka clone and shoving pure visceral contempt into his story. The characters in this show are unbelievable or at least I wouldn’t want to believe people so utterly unsalvageable would exist in reality. I mean we have bullies here who literally shoved so many razor blades and pins into this girls shoes that it defeats the purpose of the act. Geniuses! The point is to put a sharp thing she wouldn’t notice into her shoe so that she hurts herself putting it on! So filling the shoe full of razor blades defeats the goddamn purpose! Not to mention you actually wasted money getting all those. Considering the number of blades you literally wasted a significant amount of money for shock value. Also, beating her up, drowning her, killing her cat and even calling a guy to literally rape her wasn’t going over the line, but putting a knife to her throat, woah suddenly too far! God it’s just so stupid and stupid it needs to be if it must push the authors agenda for more darkness. Believe me when I say this only gets stupider. Unless you really love watching this kind of trash, avoid it like the plague.

Potential: 0%

 

Mario’s review

Boy, this is one of the most painful 20 minutes I’ve ever experienced for this first impression. Forget what I said about 3D Kanojo Real Girl being forced, this one pushes all the buttons of misery and bully bullshits to the lead girl that, for once, I wish the person who write it could experience the same. It’s no fun whatsoever to see a girl gets repeatedly beaten, nearly raped, has her one source of happiness taken away because “life is cruel” message. Even if all this was just a set-up for her becoming a dark magical girl who kill people, I just wonder why they need to overplay her circumstance to this extent. It might help if those bullies say something about the show own’s nature, which it doesn’t. It might help that the show has some love to its characters, but so far I don’t think that’s the case. This show’s message seems to be cruelty happens everywhere and the weak will receive a miserable life. I actually like the visual style when the girls are in these freeze-time zones, but other than that I will avoid this one like a plague. I do enjoy bleak shows but I won’t take ones that insult our emotions plus intelligence like this.

Potential: 0% or PURE CRAP

Posted on 7 April 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Comic Girls

Short Synopsis: A timid high school girl moves into a dorm for manga artists and makes new friends.

Wooper’s review

I wasn’t expecting much from this series, given its moeblobby promotional art and studio Nexus’ small portfolio, but this premiere was charming in some spots. Our pink haired protagonist spends most of this episode in various states of panic, so Comic Girls takes frequent trips into her overactive imagination, turning her into quite a sympathetic character in the process. She’s not especially creative or talented, but I found myself rooting for her all the same (probably because she’s small and cute). Despite her constant freakouts, the show maintains a playful air for much of its first half – check out the multitude of sunny exterior shots that combat Kaos-chan’s gloomy mood, or the soothing guitar/marimba/accordion trio that plays around the five minute mark. It’s the stuff that came later that took the wind out of my sails – the conversations between manga artists at the dorm didn’t have a speck of originality to them. Topics included obsession with senpai, breast sizes, and ganbare-ing until you just can’t ganbarou no more. The line, “You think I’m cool? Even though my boobs are small?” is uttered here, probably not for the first time in anime history, but certainly for the first time in a show that had me kind of interested. After a while, the overwhelmingly positive vibe between the four girls wore thin, and my attention was lost. If CGDCT is your favorite genre, I’d give this one a look, but otherwise, don’t bother.

Potential: 20%

Mario’s review

Just like Saredo show down there, I’m on the fence on whether I will give those shows some more episodes. With Comic Girls, it’s a cute-girls dose of this season, this time with them being an aspiring mangaka. Although this one doesn’t offer much for viewers outside of its intended market, I enjoy the self-awareness of the characters in Comic Girls. Most of the humor comes from its ability to poke fun of the mangaka life, like how many of them don’t have any real friend, and that Kaos theatre gags nail it on the playful and imaginative of a girl who makes drawing as her living. These other girls have some nice quirks and they bounce off each other well but that’s all about it. Don’t expect them to grow or anything since this type of show focuses more on laid-back atmosphere than any meaningful development. One thing this show does have some edge though, is there is a potential of yuri elements here. Overall, this is a mild and inoffensive offering with some playful (but totally unrealistic) depiction of mangaka life, so for those who into cute-girl shows, this one is a solid recommendation, otherwise you won’t see much point here.

Potential: 30%

 

Megalo Box

Short Synopsis: an underground illegal boxer is ordered to throwing matches.

Lenlo’s Review:

Finally, an anime with style. Megalo Box reminds me the likes of Cowboy Bebop or the original Ashita no Joe, but more modern. The rough and unclean lines give it this aged feel. While there are a lot of still shots that look eh at best, in motion I love it. The lack of smooth, clean lines, mean the animators don’t have to clean it up as much so I am expecting some beautiful boxing, ala Hajime no Ippo. Especially as, from the short match we got in this episode, the fights follow a rhythm. Just look at the shot of Ghetto Hachiya beating on Junk Dog, the rhythm of his fists striking our lead was great. Combined with the, so far, stellar music tracks and I just love everything about Megalo Box. So long as it keeps the story small, a personal grudge match kind of thing, then I think Megalo Box will flourish. Just, please, don’t get too complicated. Don’t try to be a big world affecting story. You don’t need it, Megalo Box.

Potential: 90%

Mario’s review
I admit that I wasn’t too optimistic about this show before it’s airing. Boxing isn’t my favorite (anime) sports and the promotional arts feature a character with cyborg parts completely turned me off. Thankfully, this premiere explains its world well, and gives us an underdog character worth spending time for. Who doesn’t love an underdog boxer to take the trophy, right? Its premise is what I consider straight-forward but right to the point. Junk Dog is going to participate in that mega-boxing tournament and I sure am on board to see this through to the end. It helps that Megalo Box has a distinct retro visual flair, with gritty lines and those bumping musical beats that engrave so well with its gritty, washout world. Junk Dog is the right kind of protagonist for this show and so far, his character is complex enough for us to root for him and so far, the production and animation are both excellent. It has been quite a while (I can’t recall the last good one on top of my head) but finally, a sport series that can be a highlight of a season.

Potential: 75%

 

Saredo Tsumibito wa Ryuu to Odoru

Short Synopsis: dragon hunters hunt dragons.

Lenlo’s Review:

If Megalo Box in a word is style, Dances with the Dragons would be tedious. It’s filled with techno-magic-babble, meaningless fights with no stakes and a generic “magic knight” concept. It’s like every terrible fantasy anime trope rolled into one. Stupidly long character names, no real magic system. In a world with machines and knowledge of Planck’s and Nuclear Energy, we are given screaming men with big swords and flashy lights who clearly have an edgy attitude problem. There is nothing memorable in Dances with the Dragons, with even the magic coming off like what we have seen in every other generic fantasy anime. The fact that the MC is a proper adult is a pleasant change of pace, they have a life and relationships. But that is about all it has going for it. I have seen people call it the “LN version of Berserk” and that its fans “can’t believe it got an adaptation” because it’s so dark. But so far Dances with the Dragons just feels like a “2edgy4you” generic fantasy series that I don’t expect to go anywhere interesting.

Potential: 5%

Mario’s review

Saredo’s first episode feels too busy with setting up many plot threads that the whole thing is an incoherent mess. On the one side, we have this duo who both love to step on each other’s mouth but somehow realize that they’re invincible together. On another side, there’s a whole conspiracy thing going on that for now it’s hard to figure out what’s all the deal is about; and then there is a string of murders going on. The magic and fight parts are by far my least interested elements. I do like the fact that this world contains of many characters from other races, like the glassed dude’s girlfriend is apparently an elf, and its world-building is intriguing enough to develop some interesting scenarios here, serious mature ones to boot. Not to say I am fond with these two leads but I can tolerate them for a while longer. I will stick with it for another episode just to see the clear picture regarding where it will head. Otherwise, if you’re not already a fan of its LN or you aren’t a hardcore fantasy action buff, then you might just skip it.

Potential: 20%

Posted on with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Gundam Build Divers

Short Synopsis: Some kids buy some Gunpla figures to play with in a virtual reality game

Aidan’s review

Once upon a time there was a show called Gundam which was made with the intent to sell toys but the animators decided to make a serious story about war, hence kickstarting it’s legacy. Now in the future, a Gundam show takes that legacy and uses it to sell toys. We have gone full circle here people. Anyway as for the show itself it’s basically one big advertisement for Gunpla models that happens to have some rather well animated mecha battle scenes. Storywise though this is about a bunch of kids taking a virtual reality game way too damn seriously. No stakes and it looks like it’s just gonna be about this kid becoming the best Gunpla pilot, like no one ever was.

Potential: 0%

 

Mario’s review

Words can’t even describe how little I care about this Gunpla universe. This first episode plays like some promotional material for Gunpla, as a consequence there’s little to no identity regarding the show itself. Characters have little personality besides “Gundam models are A-mazing” and the only real story this show has so far involve the mysterious amnesiac girl that somehow I thought she was muted (despite have some talking lines now that I recall it), just to show how forgettable all those characters are. It’s a kiddie show so I’m not going to be harsh on it, but it still remains a forgettable kiddie show at best.

Potential: 0%

 

3D Kanojo Real Girl

Short Synopsis: An otaku boy falls for a girl after they clean a pool together.

Aidan’s review

Yeah, this really isn’t for me. The developments are just contrived and the romance is forced as best. Boy isn’t it romantic when the guy you ask out rejects you in front of the class and then proceeds to stalk you after school? We had several situations that broke suspension of disbelief completely for the sole purpose of making one of them look good in front of the other in order to sell that their relationship was “Real” Thing is that examining all there intereacts I don’t see these two having anything in common or a drop of chemistry. I can’t even imagine what these two would talk about when the relationship drama dies down. But of course it won’t die down because this is shoujo and here someone will always have something to get their knickers in a twist over. Some may get something out of this but honestly a better romance anime is coming.

Potential: 0%

 

Mario’s review

This is a story of a boy meets girl and through many trials and tests they come to like each other. Happy ending. Except that this show wanted to be a realistic portrayal of nerdy otaku who find love in real life and boy, “realistic” is never in its DNA. First, the boy is a pitiful mess, not because he’s a nerd with weird hobby, but because he holes up into his shell and blames others for making him feel that way. The show, in its defense, understands that but it overplays that insecurity too many times within this first episode. They make it worse by making side characters act like true asshole to bring up that point. A boy physically abuses Iroha at school because he thinks she’s a slut? An ex-classmate meets the main character after many years and her first reaction was: “You’re still gross!”. Or later the event at the bookstore when Iroha reacts to the shoplift accusation by… undressing herself. It’s a ham-fisted way of storytelling that I just feel every development is so contrived. The main leads at the end have some good bonding (hence the 10%) but even with the girl, I don’t find her character that much appealing so there’s little in this show that makes me want to watch more here.

Potential: 10%

 

Tada-kun wa Koi wo Shinai

Short Synopsis: A teenage boy continually runs into a pretty foreign girl around town, and eventually brings her to his family’s coffee shop.

Wooper’s review

This is another romcom from the same studio and director that did Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun in 2014. While that show was more focused on the “com” part of the genre, though, Tada-kun will probably be heading deeper into “rom” territory – at least, that’s the route I’d take, since I don’t find it the least bit funny. The humor in this show mostly comes from its characters acting wacky, like the craaazy gaijin girl who’s constantly getting lost, or the flamboyant best friend who thinks he’s God’s gift to women. That would be fine, except that there’s nothing comical about the situations depicted in the show, which are just a series of coincidental meetups between the two leads. Think back to the premise of Nozaki-kun: a girl tries to confess her love for a boy (who is secretly a shoujo manga artist), but he mistakes her confession as an offer to work as his assistant. Even if you think that’s the dumbest idea on earth, there is at least a potential for comedy there. In Tada-kun, there’s nothing of the sort, unless you count the hints that Teresa is of royal descent. Even that idea would be more appropriate in a romance than a comedy, though, so let’s hope the show gets there eventually.

Potential: 30%

 

Mario’s review

An original anime from the team behind Nozaki-kun should tell us a bit on what to expect about this show. As it turns out, Tada-kun’s premiere has its fair shares of ups and downs. On the good side, the blonde lead girl – which might or might not be a princess of little unknown Europe country which is “Larsenburg” (my sub), and I really hope the show trolls us there – comes off as quirky charming (chief among them is her passion about a Japanese TV drama: Rainbow Shogun, which brings me many good laugh) and she sure brightens the screen with her presence here. She and the male lead also share some moderate chemistry and I can see the romance between them has some potential to grow. I also enjoy the visual timing of Tada-kun, in addition. My favorite visual gags from this show, for example, is how Terasa miraculously appears on the male lead’s camera multiple times. The titular male lead, on the opposite side of good, is rather bland and feel much like an self-insert type protagonist. It could benefit the show if they spend some times instead fleshing out him before he met Teresa. Moreover, I have a mixed feeling regarding the supporting cast. His male friend, Mitsuyoshi with his over the top antics was so off-putting that he could be a make-or-break point for me. The same can be said for that Nyanko Big cat (geez, he’s annoying) and the plot so far is generic and fairly routine (the leads happen to run into each other too many times, they happen to live close together, she happens to be a transfer student who study on the same class. NO). I will continue watching it as the parts I enjoyed, I did really enjoy, so I hope the show just tone down all the unnecessary and tonal-whiplash antics from certain supporting cast.

Potential: 50%

CHANGE USERNAME
Vonter
I've been playing Hollow Knight on Switch. It's perhaps the longest metroidvania game I've ever played. The game has a nonlinear progression with a lot of optional areas, which add wonder to the somber and mysterious tone of the game.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I also like how much Nagai overstylizes, overdesigns his characters.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Not that its abandoned its comedic elements.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Sash: The twin tailed girl got impaled and its gone in a somewhat darker direction yes.
Sash
apparently cutie honey is getting devilman vibes.. haven't watched it though so take this with a grain of salt
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Somewhere in my head is an image of Baraka from mortal combat in the same picture as Himiko Toga.
Lenlo
Hero Aca, still my favorite Shounen.
AidanAK47
Just got the Re:zero Blu-ray a whole ten days before it's officially released. Gotta be the first to see the dub.
Lenlo
Yeah. Her whole scene was terrible. As much as I loved Maho in a pando costume, it should have stopped there. We didnt need the groping.
Kaiser-Eoghan
FERRIS NYAN-NYAN OmO kill it, kill it with muh-fire, kill it with muh-fire.
Lenlo
Also, Megalobox, hot damn. I love it. I love it all. Mmmm I cant wait.
Lenlo
Partly, yeah. Im mid writeup for it. Suffice to say the fan-service was... alittle awkward to me
Kaiser-Eoghan
Filler episode of Steins; gate this week.
Lenlo
I cant wait to see it, ive heard good things
Amagi
Damn I love Megalobox so much it's my favorite series this season.
AidanAK47
I can't wear a suit to work everyday
Kaiser-Eoghan
*wotaku's
Kaiser-Eoghan
You are now aware that you un-intentionally stealth cosplay as watoki's protagonist each time you go to work.
AidanAK47
Pretty sure Psgels is paying to keep the site up but it's not a sum that one would consider significant. Site is dirt cheap.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've thought about using MPC as an extra player, while mainly using vlc, but vlc can be buggy for me sometimes in that it lags and pixelates the video often , I've used MPC on videos that vlc bugs-out on and they work better.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Out of curiosity, what videoplayer (example media player, realplayer, winamp, vlc, mediaplayer classic)do all of you use for watching anime?
Lenlo
You silly old people
Kaiser-Eoghan
lol how do you think I feel, I've been at this for 20 years =P
SuperMario
All these "confessions" just underline how old we all are; and still keep on that stupid hobby after all those years :))
SuperMario
I first visited the site around 2009, 2010 but was pretty much a lurker until I started writing for the site.
SuperMario
As far as I know, psgels gave the admin privilege for K-Off and Aidan, and it's K-Off who pays for the site now (other admins pls confirm)
Kaiser-Eoghan
Of course I have no idea how much it costs to keep the blog up, he could always end up stopping paying for it if he needed to cut costs.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm actually curious in estimating how much longer the blog has left. Obviously psgels must be still paying to keep the site up, but he is, of course only mortal.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The blog began in 2005, but I started reading it in 2009, began posting on the chatbox in 2010.
Amagi
I wonder which weekly review was the first one I've read on psgels. I remember .hack//roots but not sure if it was the first one. Could very well be the case, though.
Amagi
Nevermind, despite being an old as shit reader I never actually read the whole text of the about-part.
Amagi
How old is this blog anyway? I am a regular reader since 2006 or something although it was only recently that I started talking here.
Lenlo
Oh I know all about that Kaiser. It was amazing to read about
Raggers
Wow, this is still going? Good on you guys
Kaiser-Eoghan
*wiki article
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Read the cultural impact of the original ashita no Joe on the youtube article, Japanese actually mass mourned him
Kaiser-Eoghan
Some writers just know how to get an un-explainably effective rhythm going.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I always struggle with commenting/reviewing mood pieces and slice of life mood pieces especially, even when I finish something in the genre sometimes I'll go "I don't understand why this worked so well for me, why wasn't it boring?"
Anonymous2194677
Microsot E3 Press Conference was nuts, they showed too many games.
Anonymous2189608
Hey guys, I made/edited my very first video about a show I greatly love, hope you'll give it a watch too:

https://youtu.be/PdjwePOIbQA
Anonymous2187735
Yeah, and an NES prequel to Bloodstained Ritual of the Night launched a couple of weeks ago. And while easier than NES castlevanias it's quite fun. Also very cheap only $10.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Alas, I've not kept up much with the videogame scene in a number of years. I know there's a spiritual successor to castlevania being made though.
Anonymous2187735
Sorry Nightmare Creatures its what it's called.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Actually come to think of it, the 64 games probably had more vampires than the others I played.
Anonymous2187735
Have you played the game that inspired this Castlevania? Deadly Creatures?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Never did get round to playing as Henry though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I remember the garden stage being especially frustrating as Schneider because of how slow he moved.
Anonymous2187735
Also that game demands you to play on normal or higher to play beyond that nitro stage.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I remember having to finish the game in a day because I was saddled with constantly rubbish memory cards for my N64.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Sorry, I post fast and long so some of what I say probably might get missed/skimmed over.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Actually I did mention it, called it the nitro stage.
Anonymous2187735
Still I think despite the flaws it's has become fun for me because I surprisingly get better each time I play it. and last time I make the game chug because of how fast I was progressing.
Anonymous2187735
Yeah. But I'm surprised you don't mention the worst part. The Nitro and Mandragora level. In which you have to go across several rooms without jumping.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: I remember the game punishes you for using the item seller guy too much aswell.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I remember the mansion level being creepy back then.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But the werewolf thing was pretty rad.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And then there was that crumbling labyrinth stage. I remember on hard mode you have to fight the chainsaw gardener too.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The art tower stage is also annoying if you run out of day/night cards.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Also it wouldn't let you finish it properly if you took too long.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: The N64 castlevanias have so many flaws, weird controls , bad camera , the day and night feature is kind of cool but it also puts a timer on things and certain parts become a pain because of it. They had frustrating bits too like the ice castle part with the weird jump sections and the nitro carrying stage.
Anonymous2187417
Lords of Shadow was another IP the developer had to accomodate into a known IP kinda like Star Fox Adventures.
Anonymous2187417
The other Castlevanias I haven't played are Lament of Innocence and Curse of Darkness. LoS was ok but very long. and it's interquel Mirror of Fate put me off playing LoS2.
Anonymous2187417
I haven't played that one. Seems like a mixed bag. Like Zelda 2 or Metroid 2.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've seen playthroughs of simon's quest, but we all know why thats a notorious mess.
Anonymous2187417
Castlevania 64 and Legacy of Darkness are also my guilty pleasures. I think if Konami still made Castlevanias it would have tried aping the Souls type of gameplay.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I remember some very very silly voice acting and dialogue in symphony of the night.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I preferred when they were just platform games. Later ones incoperated level up elements if I recall.
Anonymous2187417
After SOTN I think the game coming closer to that greatness is Order of Ecclesia if anything it keeps the difficulty of the classic Castlevanias and puts it in the Metroidvania formula. It has a platforming challenge level that's very satisfying to play.
Anonymous2187417
I've played most of them. Castlevania 3 is a very tough game, but that also makes the journey feel long and rewarding. Rondo of Blood feels like the cornerstone of the series since it's the Castlevania that got most of it's sprite reused in later games.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Reminds me, the game, clocktower is vaguely inspired by an old Italian horror film.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And symphony of the night.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I actually feel I should have played more castlevania back in the day, I've played bloodlines, castlevania 4, Dracula X, legacy of darkness, admittedly the last one isn't a good game and is more of a guilty pleasure.
Anonymous2186526
They could still meet Grant in the Clocktower.
Anonymous2186526
I wonder if the second season will be the journey to the castle like in the game. And the third season is entirely in the castle.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Already a season 3 announced.
Lenlo
Oh god yes. I cant wait
Kaiser-Eoghan
New netflix castlevania episodes out next month.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Was going to mention that. Wish more shows would do o.
Lenlo
Yeah, a lot of plot threads are converging and I like it. My favorite part though was Iglesias and their commitment to non-japanese languages. They were good!
Kaiser-Eoghan
*his bit
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Glad that sachio gets hit bit of backstory and that its well connected to the rest of the overall plot.
Lenlo
Alright Megalo Box was pretty good this week. So much to say
KTravlos
Indeed the Alliance system is atypical of mass democracy. There seem to be no organised parties and lists. Instead administrations seem to be formed on a personalist basis(me and my chums). And the Assembly seems to have very weak powers of oversight. A very flawed institutionally system. But I digress . It is still anime and even from Tanaka I do not expect deep discussion of democratic politics
KTravlos
I mean if two of 9 ministers in an administration resigned in any current representative/competitive election system it would be a big news and embarrassment to the goverment. My guess is that they were blackmailed to stay on, or were too afraid of the war party.
KTravlos
busy weeks (finals and deadlines). Watched the latest LOGH:NT episode. It was ok. A bit dry, but so are many of the episodes of NT or the Original on their own. One think it led me to think is that neither the books , nor the OVA, nor NT explain why Rebelo/Lebello and Huang Rui (the two politicians opposed to the Invasion of the Empire) did not resign in opposition. (Turnhit also opposed but..)
Lenlo
I think its cause of Daru's voice. Hes so overt about it and his voice makes it so clear hes not really being serious about any of that, cause it completely changes when hes talking serious subjects
Amagi
@Kaiser: Yeah I am watching CCS but funny enough I fell behind too, so it might be someone else you're thinking of
Kaiser-Eoghan
Always felt that Daru strikes a hit when it comes to pervy/otaku characters. Most of them tend to be incredibly annoying.
Lenlo
This episode was nice and chill while still moving stuff forward. I enjoyed it. It does seem like we are hitting the main conflict though, with Amadeus and Maho
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: I feel with this episode the plot is really moving along now.
Lenlo
@Kaiser, Thats the question aint it? How to savem both? We know he does, cause of the original, but alot happens along the way. Its a great ride
Kaiser-Eoghan
Bad light novels would make for good fire and burning material =)
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I think it was you who was keeping up with the new cardcaptor sakura? or may that was bokusenou? I fell behind in it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Given Japan is often thought to be a racist society.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I suppose though its saying something though, about them dropping that LN author for racism , its probably, considering its Japan, progressive that they called him out for his racisim.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Angel cop's Japanese version I think had some rant about Judaisim in its last episode too I think.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Honestly I try not to seek out stories about how awful certain creators are if I can.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Viz decided not to run Kenshin's followup/side story manga. But oddly they decided to keep going with toriko even though toriko's author also got in trouble for pedophilic charges.
AidanAK47
Looking at that Isekai anime I say we we saved from something truly terrible. Though I find it odd that it was dropped because the author was a racist not because of it well...being goddamn terrible.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I watched a random episode, laughed more than I should have.
Amagi
btw Is anyone besides me watching Tiramisu? Am I the only one that finds this shit funny?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I'd only read the ANN article title and decided I wouldn't entertain the comments by reading on.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: How do I save them both @steins;gate, how do I save both Kurisu AND mayuri, this is hurting me ;o;
Amagi
I am just reading what he liked on twitter and said (seems to be the director), what the hell
Amagi
@Kaiser-Eoghan: Man, I never heard of this. The anime was just harmless comedy, didn't expect that to be honest.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Apparently the guy who did Net-juu was in trouble for making anti-Semitic remarks, not anti-Netanyahu remarks, actual anti-Jewish remarks.
Amagi
@Kaiser-Eoghan: But yeah it's not that we lost anything or so. I am rather interested in what kind of series the studio will do now instead (inb4 some different LN isekai)
Amagi
Chinese manga fans were protesting for a while already, then one of the VAs quit and now they're cancelling the whole thing. The author also made racist posts against Chinese ppl don't know what though.
Amagi
Seems like it was hinting the MC to be a Nanking "hero" that seems to be the problem, there seem to be a lot of dog whistles in there and God rewards this guy when he died at 94, literally saying he's "ideologically sound" (just saying what I see in the threads).
Kaiser-Eoghan
*isekai light novels
Kaiser-Eoghan
A minor victory against the anti-art/anti-intellectual movement, may more light novels fall =)
Amagi
edit: LN seems to be cancelled too
Kaiser-Eoghan
*might result*
Amagi
seems like they cancelled that isekai anime LN adaption because of racism of the author and the story
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Dropping the no porn rule result however in only releasing games where they felt safer about uncensoring the content.
AidanAK47
So Steam is just going to let everything on the site now. I mena I suppose it would be good to just drop that stupid no porn rule but well opens the floodgates to some rather bad consequences.
Vonter
Man, talking about Ranma also reminded me of Ghost Sweeper Mikami, that one imo had a similar type of format in humor. It had action, suspense and wackiness. That show asked the weird implications. Like the one time a side character ate a cake that make him regress back in time being aware of the curse. Or a ghost that could control your dreams and psyche. Or a demon that make you steadily shrink
Lenlo
Well thats one Isekai down, as "Nidome no Jinsei wo Isekai de" gets cancelled. Yay?
Lenlo
Yeah. Once you remember its from 1970, it becomes even more impressive. And you can see where Megalo Box is trying to get some of the grainieness back into its own style.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I love how they dramatically used stills in these really old shows, Dezaki also did that very well. From what I'm gathering from these clips is that this is melodrama earned/deserved and well executed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Reading coments on this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0SRF0S3ni2g that the mangaka was originally going to have him survive.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Very bleak artstyle and despite the age of the drawings/animation the show look like its strong enough to carry an impact.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: @4:40 or so, the sudden realization.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: No bother, managed to get the link working regardless.
Lenlo
*Sigh*
Lenlo
Ah dangit. Textbox messed up my link somehow.

[link src="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CXYbpnONnzw

That"] should work
Lenlo
[link src="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CXYbpnONnzw&t=353s

You"] can see how alot of the characters repeat themselves from Ashita no Joe
Lenlo
If its done anywhere near as well as Ashita no Joe, which Megalo Box is based off of, then it will be great. Joe's death is still one of the best endings ever for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: I can see it getting me if done right.
Lenlo
Just sayin
Lenlo
90% chance Joe dies in Megalo Box
Kaiser-Eoghan
The idea of shampoo actually having kittens and then owning them in her human form.
Kaiser-Eoghan
This is weirding me out OmO
Kaiser-Eoghan
I actually went further thinking about it, if the switches kept flipping back constantly during sex.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And theres the realization, I've actually overthought this to such a point, its sunk in.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But I also remember discussing this with a friend when I was young and we came up with that the female forms could potentially be infertile.
Kaiser-Eoghan
The ridiculous shit I thought of as a kid.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I mean I actually literally imagined the baby sticking out of him and looking like it got fused with him.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Imagination has gone in a dark, perverse direction =<
Kaiser-Eoghan
I actually meant as in when the baby is halfway out , then transformation occurs.
AidanAK47
Oh wait Ranma requires hot water to change back.
AidanAK47
In the case of Ranma and childbirth, that's impossible. Basically it would require Ranma to not get cold water on him for nine months as if he turned back into a guy his organs would switch and the child would die. Same with any other gender bender, they would need to remain female for nine months till birth. Switch once, and kids a dead clump of cells.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'd sometimes love to be like he is now, in his case re-discovering anime all over again.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Showed him clips of utena and his reaction was "whoah this weird lookin' I have to watch this show "
Kaiser-Eoghan
We are in disagreement on Eva, with him preferring the series and I the rebuilds.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I tried to get a friend of mine to watch log horizon because he was really into online games....but he went off and watched sword art instead =<
Kaiser-Eoghan
I though he hated re zero, but it was only beetlguse and the first few episodes, he hates Emilia and presumably prefers Rem. He was the one who actually kind of pushed me to watch made in abyss, though he thought it was semi-exploitative.
Kaiser-Eoghan
No game no life kind of disgusted him though.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Working on convincing him to watch girls last tour and houseki. He seems to love boku no hero academia.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I even got him to play doki doki literature club, he wanted to punch the screen for the first hour, then was pleasently disturbed when shit got real.
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Featured Posts

Megalo Box – 11 [A Deadmarch]

Incredible Megalo Box… Simply incredible. This week was perfect in every way but one, and at this point that one is easily overlooked. Let’s skip this preamble and jump right in! Megalo Box had a lot going on this week as we see the culmination of a lot of characters big arcs. Starting off, lets […]

Steins;Gate 0 – 10 [Pandora of Provable Existence -Forbidden Cubicle-]

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Golden Kamuy – 10 [Fellow Traveler]

New episode, new season, new plan, new scenery and possible new set of enemy too. Considered Golden Kamuy’s track record, I won’t be surprised if the new face Kiroranke, at the risk of Asirpa slaps me on my face for saying so. He’s in the interesting position in all this, both an ex-7th Unit Hokkaido, […]

Darling in the Franxx – 20[A New World]

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Hisone to Masotan – 09 [Eeeek!]

After a pretty excellent episode last week, HisoMaso goes into the direction I’m afraid the most: exploring the romance aspect that by all means we don’t really need in the first place. And they frame it in a manner I cannot get behind. Lets see, due to these girls develop a certain feeling, they intoxicate […]

Hinamatsuri – 10 [Like a River Stream]

Our favorite girls Hitomi and Anzu drive central plots this week, even at the cost of Hina and Mao (well, the latter doesn’t matter much, but why does she have such limited appearance?). I don’t have much of a complaint though, since stories involving Hitomi or Anzu are usually Hinamatsuri’s strongest. The humor of this […]

Full Metal Panic Invisible Victory – 08[One-Man Force]

Well…shit. Sadly having read the Full Metal Panic novels quite a while back I was prepared for this particular development and thus wasn’t quite as effected by it as I would have been. bUt I am certain to anyone who is watching this unspoiled that the way this episode started would have caught them completely […]

Megalo Box – 10 [The Die Is Cast]

Hello and welcome to another week of Megalo Box, with perhaps the best pre-finale hype episode ever. This week we have amazing music, fantastic language skills and lots of converging plot threads. Lets jump in! First, numero uno, Megalo Box has the best soundtrack of this season. It’s simply fantastic. Pepe Iglesias’ theme was on […]

Steins;Gate 0 – 9 [Pandora of Eternal Return -Pandora’s Box-]

Welcome, another week another dose of Steins;Gate 0. This week is a very relaxed, calm episode for the most part so we can wind down from last weeks tragic drama. Lets jump in! This week was, compared to last, a slow one and that’s a good thing. The main plot with Amadeus is laid out […]

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