Posted on 11 October 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Release the Spyce

Short Synopsis: A girl is scouted to join a bunch of high school girls being ninjas.

Aidan’s review:
The opening scene of this episode had me feeling like I was in the 90’s again watching a really crappy version of the matrix. This show is certainly trying hard to look cool but so hard that it just comes across as really dumb. The science behind everything here is ridiculous and I am not sure if the writing itself is aware of it. I mean the “Spyce” in the shows title appears to be a drug based on the whole “Humans only use 10% of their brains” myth and the main character seems to have a supernatural sense of sight and smell but even more ludicious, the ability to diagnose physical and mental problems by licking people. This show seems to be targeting two conflicting demographics, those who want cute girls doing cute things and those who want action. The two are obviously at odds and it doesn’t help that the action is just painfully trying too hard. This show desperately wants you to think it’s cool and just as expected comes off as rather lame instead. I am not sure about a show which glorifies drug use either as this spyce turns girls into superheroes with seemly no negative consequences. This is just a really dumb poorly written show.
Potential: 0%

Mario’s review:
Release the Spyce is pretty much what you expected, a nonsensical fun ride. This episode spends its amount of time into two subplots: cute girls having their normal everyday school life and cute girls moonlighting as spies – or more as ninja, or more as heroes in cute outfits. Some details might stretch its credulity a little (ninja frog? Hell, yeah! Licking to sense other person’s personality?), but to its credits it doesn’t take those seriously. I suppose the main character Momo embodies the first episode’s strengths and weaknesses so far. On the narrative level, her role works as she’s a qualified addition to the cast. Unlike other main helpless protagonists who usually get sucked to the case all by accident, Momo gets there all by her ability and her determination to fight crimes. Her hesitation when it comes to action, her inspiration comes from her late-police father, all work by that glance. On the negative side, she never feels like a real person to me. Her ability is nonsensical and there isn’t much subtext going on in this chick flicks. The cast fares much worse as for now they fall into archetypal roles, and the villains are clearly evil and maniac. It’s too simple and straightforward for its own good.
Potential: 40%

 

Ulysses: Jeanne d’Arc to Renkin no Kishi

Short Synopsis: A wannabe alchemist searches for a way to grant his childhood friend immortality.

Lenlo’s Review:
Ah, my first bamboozling of the season. It feels… bad. I went into this expecting something completely different than it turned out to be. Based on the description and some promo art, I was expecting some kind of historical epic during the Hundred Years’ War, maybe with some fantastical local elements ala Mahoutsukai no Yome thrown in there. Instead I get a high school harem series set in the 14th century, with a bunch of cliches that don’t belong there. I’ll be frank, I lost my interest when I saw 3 anime girl stereotypes in the same shot 1 minute in, all staring at our bland male leads empty seat. Color me disappointed and move on. There are better series in this season.
Potential: 0%

Wooper’s review:
How much longer will it be before the average Japanese animator loses all ability to draw walk cycles? If the premiere of Ulysses: Jeanne d’Arc too Long Title is anything to go by, it could happen before 2019 hits. This episode was chock-full of awkward and aborted motion, from sword fights that freeze at inappropriate times to characters that are supposed to be entering a room, but appear instead to be marching in place. The low budget appearance is just what this story deserves, as its historical setting is squandered on a cookie cutter harem setup. There’s even some fetish baiting, with the most nervous of all the same-faced girls peeing herself because a bird startles her in the middle of a dark forest. Fear not, however, as our gentlemanly lead character proclaims that he’s got a little sister (of course he does), so he’s totally used to spontaneous urination. If you want to write a series this insultingly bad, why not just set it during the modern day? A quick Google search reveals that the link between the Hundred Years’ War and alchemy is tenuous at best, so you could have just made this another high school battle harem rather than dragging Joan of Arc’s name through the mud. There’s a time skip twist just before the credits, which is the only decent part of the episode, but it’s not worth the price of entry. Do yourself a lifelong favor and never, ever watch this show.
Potential: 0%

 

Anima Yell!

Short Synopsis: An excitable high school girl attempts to start a cheerleading club.

Lenlo’s Review:
Ah, the seasonal entry into “Cute Girls doing Cute Things”. This time that thing is Cheerleading, a traditional highschool activity. Anima Yell looks competent enough. The art isn’t bad, the animation is enough that for a few shots I was actually surprised with how the well the Cheerleading worked. Anima Yell even took the slow approach of gathering the club members and not just overloading us with everything all at once. Most of all though, it was actually kinda funny. It’s not my proudest moment, but I giggled at the “Chair” joke the first 2 times it came up, I’ll admit it. Basically, if you want a show you can sit back, relax, not have to think too deeply about the philosophical meaning of and just enjoy, you could do a lot worse than Anima Yell. Yeah, it’s not my cup of tea, but I’m the kind of asshole who enjoyed Ergo Proxy, and I can say Anima Yell is at the very least, competent in every way that matters.
Potential: 30%

Wooper’s review:
This is another high energy club anime in the vein of Anime-Gataris or Comic Girls, which should tell you everything you need to know. If you like pink-haired protagonists and would cite “irreversibly cheerful” as your mood of choice, Anima Yell was made just for you. The character designs won’t win any awards for originality, but they’re moe enough to make your teeth fall out. The animation isn’t exactly top shelf, but it’s competent, even for a series that revolves around a movement-heavy sport like cheerleading. The plot point of gathering five members to start a high school club won’t set the world on fire, but it’s a good jumping-off point for some decent character work, should the show be so inclined. One thing Anima Yell does better than a lot of its contemporaries is striking a balance between earnestness and clumsiness in its main character. When both of these traits are present in one person, they typically vie for dominance, when they should be harmonizing instead. This series takes the latter approach, which makes for a pleasant watching experience. Anima Yell’s lack of ambition and familiar template will discourage a lot of fans from picking it up (myself included), but it looks to be one of the year’s better entries in this genre.
Potential: 30%

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

Radiant

Short Synopsis: A young sorcerer takes on a giant monster without his teacher’s help.

Aidan’s review:
This was certainly quite different from the French manga I read and I was concerned that the Japanese animation studio decided to go anime original with the product. However it seems the creator of the original french manga(Yes, French) decided that the first 5 episodes would be a rewrite of the story. This could be due to the general consensus that I heard that Radiants first two volumes are too formulaic shounen and not very interesting. However it seems that most agree that once this story gets into its first real arc then it improves dramatically. Of course the question is, how long is that going to take and will it reach that point in a 21 episode run? I don’t think what I seen this episode is bad, as a matter of fact I would say that out of most recent efforts this show captured the spirit of golden age shounen quite well. The big problem is that everything you see here is very much an echo of shounen you have seen before. Thus your opinion on this show very much depends on your exposure to shounen anime. As someone who has seen a large share of Shounen anime I would say this show is fine and I have seen shounens that didn’t work as well as it did. The animation is certainly better than something like Black Clover as well. There is potential for this one to surprise but that’s if it can keep viewers interested long enough to pull out it’s big guns and if those guns can truly blow people away so that they forgive a slow start.
Potential: 60%

Wooper’s review:
I’ll be blunt – I didn’t enjoy a single thing about this premiere. Some people are excited for the cultural broadening of anime that Radiant represents (the source material is French), but if tired shounen copycats are the type of non-Japanese works that get selected, the net change is hardly significant. This show features a loud, spiky-haired magic user who can punch things really hard, and who must deal with discrimination based on his sorcerer status. He has a teacher who’s strict but secretly kind-hearted, and he even saves a young boy from a frightening monster in the very first episode. Is any of this sounding familiar? The series boasts strange character designs, verdant backgrounds, and European music, but these elements aren’t enough to distract from how safe and shallow the final product feels. There was only one image that interested me in these 23 minutes: a wide shot of the teacher’s airship against a moonlit sky. Apart from that, my eyes were starving for visual stimulation. My funny bone fared even worse, nearly disintegrating at the attempted physical comedy on display. For the sake of French comic authors everywhere, I hope that Seiji Kishi butchered this adaptation, so they can put all the blame on him and try again some day with a different director at the helm. If you’ve never met a shounen you didn’t love, this will be right up your alley. Otherwise, steer clear (no pun intended).
Potential: 20%

 

Goblin Slayer

Short Synopsis: A party of adventurers take on a quest to rescue some girls from goblins.

Aidan’s review:
Well that was dark, both figuratively and literally considering the full episode took place in a cave. The first ten minutes or so played a long con of showing a bunch of characters who looked to be main cast worthy and their first job of taking on goblins. What follows is the perfect example of what not to do for anyone who’s played an MMO or RPG. Like not damaging the quest giver who recommended that you wait for a higher ranked adventurer before going on the quest. Or remembering to take potions. Or not leaving behind your mage and healer while running on ahead. Or bringing a longsword to fight in a cramped cave. Or the tank swinging his sword wildly making it that the main dps couldn’t help out. So this episode mainly serves to do two things, one is showing how goblins are irredeemable assholes and two is showing how badass goblin slaying batman is. Believe or not considering how graphic this was it was toned down from the manga which was rather gratuitous with showing the rape and violence. White Fox took the more tasteful route of not directly showing rape but still making sure we knew what was happening offscreen. For a first episode it does the job of setting up the premise and the only real hiccup was White Fox replacing Goblin Slayer with a CGI model at times and thinking viewers wouldn’t notice. I hope that doesn’t become a common occurrence.
Potential: 75%

Lenlo’s Review:
Ah White Fox, we meet once again. Your 2 for 4 with me right now, so time to break the tie. So far, Goblin Slayer is preeetty good. I saw the bait and switch of the adventuring team coming a mile away, but it still worked. I found the light foreshadowing of the longsword and the cave walls/ceiling to work well. And most of all, I enjoyed how the Goblins were suitably threatening. So often anime, and fresh DnD DM’s, forget that just Goblins being weak stat wise means they have to make up for it in other areas, such as cleverness and numbers. Being underestimated. It makes me think that our lead will face some real challenges going through the series, even if I have no idea what the central plot may end up being. The fact that Goblin Slayer didn’t just cut his way through the horde either was appreciated. He used a very pragmatic approach of traps, using his resources, knowledge and the geography of the cave. As Aidan said, he is closer to a sort of Batman than a general overpowered MC. The two aspects that bugged me, that will most likely become a reoccurring thing if its being used this much in the first episode, is the CGI model of the Goblin Slayer and the rape. One of these things is less concerning than the other. I don’t think we are escaping that. But you know what, I don’t care. I am in for the season Goblin Slayer. Don’t disappoint me.
Potential: 70%

 

SSSS.GRIDMAN

Short Synopsis: A boy with amnesia has to turn into a giant robot to fight Kaiju.

Aidan’s review:
Allow me to be blunt. I have absolutely, positively no idea how to react to this one. The inspiration certainly seems to be along the lines of Tokusatsu shows like Kamen rider, in fact this does seem to be a sequel to a lesser known one. However the episode itself seems to be half school life and half giant monster fighting. What throws me off so much however is the nature of the dialogue which some have deemed realistic but I myself find rather quirky. I wish I could react to a giant monster ripping apart the town with as much nonchalance as these characters do. In fact these characters seem to react to any supernatural incident with mild disinterest. The main character has amnesia(Tired trope indeed) and both he along with everyone else treats it like he stubbed a toe. “You got amnesia? Well that’s odd but eh, you will get over it” That’s what is throwing me off throughout this episode because the characters seem to care very little about the events of the plot, causing a strange disconnect between myself and the story unfolding. Thus I cannot get invested in any of it but even then I just think this isn’t the kind of show for me. I feel this is more for fans of the original Gridman or other Tokusatsu media.
Potential: 0%

Lenlo’s Review:
If nothing else, I have to give Gridman props for trying something interesting. Not with the story, that’s some standard Super Sentai Kamen Rider fare, though I do like the monsters being carved and created. Not the characters, because amnesia is a played out trope that every anime fan is probably tired of. No, I have to give it props for its direction. In just this first episode Gridman tried a number of interesting shots, even if they failed. The single frame cuts during a conversation, as if time is passing for awhile and its just cutting to the start of each sentence. Or the long pause after the ball knocks the sandwich to the ground. I’m not sure either of them worked as intended, but I give props to Trigger for trying something new like always. As far as the actual show goes though, I am personally not interested. I grew out of Power Rangers a long time ago, and I am not familiar with the source material of Gridman enough to truly care. As Aidan points out, the characters react to everything like they have seen it a thousand times, even the giant Kaiju showing up out of nowhere. It’s the same offbeat style Trigger is known for, but here it bugs me. Still, if you like Sentai Shows and if Gridman keeps up some of these interesting directional choices, you might enjoy it.
Potential: 15%

Posted on with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Dakaretai Otoko Ichii ni Odosarete Imasu

Short Synopsis: A beloved actor loses his #1 spot to an industry newcomer, whose attraction to him complicates their relationship.

Mario’s review:
Oh boy, they go for *hardcore* borderline-porn BL. Oh boy, it’s the usual boy force-kisses the other, and of course the victim finds the predator too charming that they can’t do anything but be swept away. Damn it. I have to kick myself for watching this in public, as I don’t know how the people around me would think when the lines “I want to have sex with you” flashing repeatedly on the screen. Damn it. It would’ve been a powerful love story if they don’t rely on those uncomfortable tropes. One thing this show works quite well is that it portrays the male lead in an interesting way. He’s a mountain of personal conflicts: he hates this guy and loves him at the same time. His actions sometimes contradict with his thoughts, but they all reveal a deeper side of him. That he tries his earnest to help “his rival” with his experience makes him an interesting character to follow. The main draw of this series, however is the hot, burning hot passions from two sexy “huggable” naked boys, and for me, it’s just way too hardcore for me to fully embrace. It might be one of the better shounen ai titles, but it’s strictly for the fans of this genre.
Potential: 10%

Wooper’s review:
This would be a hard review to write if I danced around the subject, so I’ll make it short: there’s an attempted rape scene around the midway point of this episode, and it’s kind of played for laughs. An up-and-coming actor takes incriminating cell phone footage of an older co-worker, who says he’ll do “anything” for it to be deleted, and the younger man’s request is sex. The older guy’s refusal is ignored, and he has to construct a literal barricade of furniture, potted plants, and a flat screen TV to trap his attacker in the bathroom. A rowdy, vaguely flamenco-influenced guitar tune plays intermittently throughout this scene, which is in remarkably poor taste. What’s worse, the initial awkwardness this causes quickly gives way to an amicable relationship, which eventually features consensual sex. Based on the terrible message at the heart of its plot, I’m tempted to label this entire series a dumpster fire, and for many viewers it will be. But I do want to praise the internal monologue of the lead character (the victim of the aforementioned assault), whose arrogance and narcissism create an interesting lens through which we view the entertainment industry. His love for himself is equaled only by his love of his work, which is expressed in the form of both scathing criticism and smart advice. He’s a funny, worthwhile character, conceived with more purpose than a lot of the useless teenage protags that populate anime right now. Shame about the visually boring, morally repulsive show surrounding him.
Potential: 20%

 

Kishuku Gakkou no Juliet

Short Synopsis: Legitimized Highschool gang warfare in the style of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, but now with Tsundere’s.

Aidan’s review:
As far as this story is concerned this was likely the best opening episode it could have. I will even admit to being a bit of a sucker for a good confession scene. Of course this is pretty much as good as it gets as we already have a second girl her whose feelings are doomed to be unrequited along with the other girls about to come along. For this is my most hated kind of harem, the one that keeps adding characters despite the fact that the main couple has already been decided. I mean the point of a harem is having a bunch of girls go after the main and each having at least a slim chance of winning. Here every girl after this has no chance so what is the bloody point? Outside of the relationship between the two leads this show has nothing really to offer besides cliche. It’s decently watchable so far but as someone who rea don in the manga I can say that whatever charm it has wears thin quite fast. Not to mean the constant competition between the two houses just gets really annoying as they constantly repeat how much they wanna kick the crap out of each other. I say for some this could prove to be a decent show to pass the time with but otherwise there isn’t that much to it.
Potential: 20%

Lenlo’s Review:
So, as has happened all too often this season, I have no idea what to make of this one. Based on the title, it looks like Kishuku is supposed to be some kind of Romeo and Juliet story, once again revamped for high school in some fictional Not Europe country? If so I really don’t know what to make of it, because it takes the basic premise of Romeo and Juliet and then proceeds to just ignore Shakespeare and go off on its own thing. On one hand that’s refreshing, in that its not the same story over and over again. On the other, there is a reason Shakespeare is still performed today hundreds of years later. Looks like another generic “Will they, won’t they” rom-com to me. Dull.
Potential: 0%

 

Irozuku Sekai no Ashita kara

Short Synopsis: A passionless depressed witch gets sent back in time to experience life with her young Grandmother.

Mario’s review:
I’m not hard-pressed to say that Irozuku is the most gorgeous production in this season so far. It has rich background arts, expressive characters, fluid animation and it’s so goddamn striking in everything it does. The fireworks scenes are beautiful both in color and in muted black & white through Hitomi’s point of view, and the train sequence is impressive. In fact, its production values are too great that it kinda overwhelms the narrative. I like the meat of the story, a girl who loses her passion for magic, and for the colors of life, literally, but what sold me on her characters and the world so far is purely on the visual level, not the narrative. Her character is passive, not in a good way. She’s passive in a way that she seems lost and always waits for the plot brings her along. In addition, while I appreciate the way her Grandma brings her back to this world, the manner the show does it is way too contrived with a vague explanation that “it has been decided. You will understand”. I’m not too sold with the story so far, but the natural chemistry between the cast, and the rich art designs in both worlds more than make up for its more familiar story.
Potential: 70%

Lenlo’s Review:
You know, I am starting to think I was wrong about this season, that it just might have a decent set of shows. Irozuku is one of the prettiest series I have seen so far, as Mario said. The backgrounds are full, the colors pop and I was never visually bored. Narratively I am concerned, as the female lead Hitomi isn’t very compelling with how passive she is. The contrivance to start the plot, “It was decided” and “You’ll understand” bug me more than anything else though. I figure we can give it another few episodes to see how that and her relationship with her grandma works out however, as the crux of the series seems to be a metaphor for overcoming depression and finding magic and color in your world. Those kinds of things tend to be slow starters, with how dependent they are on the characters. I personally have been watching March Comes in Like a Lion recently, and while Irozuku doesn’t quite measure up narratively, it is a subject I am in the mood for. I see no reason not to stick it out for a few more episodes and see how the relationships play out.
Potential: 60%

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

Gakuen Basara

Short Synopsis: The Sengoku Jidai, the Warring States era of Feudal Japan, but set in high school.

Lenlo’s Review:
So, can anyone tell me what this is actually about? I have no idea what kind of series this is. I get that it’s just a kind of comedy retelling of the Sengoku Jidai, but in high school, but that’s simply isn’t interesting. We have seen the characters before in better stories, and at this point most anime fans have at least a passing knowledge of the era. Moving it to highschool with all the same characters, from Nobunaga to Ieyasu just doesn’t make any sense. There are too many characters doing nothing relevant, with no actual plot but a pre-set on the rails played out Warring States narrative. Pass.
Potential: 0%

Mario’s review:
My goodness, this show makes no damn sense. It’s just a playfield for over the top boys acting over the top antics. Imagine a middle school kids come up with an idea to cram up all his favorite toys and you would get something close to this. I know this show aims for ridiculous but it needs to have a point. Here I don’t see any point at all. It just keeps introducing one badass character after another, and when all is crazy from design to personality, no one comes up as amazing at all. At the end of the day I don’t give a damn for any face, let alone their proxy war or real war or whatever the hell it is. This, my friends, is the worst premiere I watched so far this season.
Potential: 0%

 

Uchi no Maid ga Uzasugiru!

Short Synopsis: A woman decides to work in the house of a cute loli girl.

Lenlo’s Review:
I don’t know what to make of Uchi no Maid. On one hand it’s trying to be this sweet family/young daughter growing up/single father parenting story. On the other it’s a sort of comedy piece. It does a decent job at both of those. I especially love the Russian(?) themed music that comes on throughout, and it sometimes gives me Mrs. Doubtfire mixed with Home Alone vibes. When it’s on, Uchi no Maid does a great job amusing me. The contrast of young spitfire child and a ripped JSDF maid has potential, even if it’s pretty creepy at times. But if you’re in this for some sweet family time, I would recommend Amaama to Inazuma instead. However you want something that won’t rot your teeth how with how sweet it is, because Amaama to Inazuma is concentrated sugar, then Uchi no Maid is right up your alley. I don’t care what Mario says, just ignore him. Skip right over the next paragraph. Also, the workout ED is god damn fantastic and I love everything about it.
Potential: 50%

Mario’s review:
It’s the second consecutive show I watched about a girl who has weird fascination with a loli girl. This show underlines the level of creepiness by having the crazy one an actual adult with six-pack abs.The main joke is that doesn’t matter how mean the loli girl behaves, she can’t match the insanity of her maid. It provides some amusing slapstick gags, and I especially enjoy the Russian music, but after it passes halfway point the premise already wears thin. We does see the fact that the girl tries to cope with the loss of her mother, producing some mild touching moments, but they are quickly put aside for harmless and questionable hijinks, and a father who can’t be taken seriously. Sorry Lenlo, this show is trash.
Potential: 0%

 

Tonari no Kyuuketsuki-san

Short Synopsis: A girl decides to move in to the house of cute loli g— Deja vu?

Aidan’s review:
You know it might be just my imagination but I think this anime was trying to be funny. But that can’t be, my mouth didn’t even twitch as they told unfunny joke after unfunny joke. I didn’t even smirk at the Jojo’s reference. Animation is so barebones and I don’t care how hard you are pushing the yuri angle when the designs are so basic. Not that this show could even go the yuri route to begin with as that would require taking actual risks and we must keep this as safe and inoffensive as possible. So yeah lets just joke that the human girl wants to rape the vampire girl for the fourth time, much better. Sigh…honestly this show doesn’t really get a response from me be it positive or negative. I just watched an episode of anime and I felt nothing but mild boredom. Even if I somehow had any interest, is there anywhere this story could go. I mean vampire is lonely, girl moves in with vampire, vampire not lonely anymore, story finished. I no longer see to see what the remaining 11 episodes have in store.
Potential: 0%

Mario’s review:
I’m suffocating with too much cuteness, and a sip of creepiness. It doesn’t have much in terms of plot or even production quality, it only has two main premises: that one of the girl is a cute, high-class vampire who drinks blood in a teacup and the other one is a more intimidating one. It offers some twists over the common myth of vampire, but everything here is mild, very mild that it easily slips out of the memory. From the look of the OP there are two more girls who serve as third wheels so you can be sure that these yuri hijinks won’t go away anytime soon. The girls’ design are cute but their personality sure isn’t, and the animation remains quite bareboned. Honestly there’s nothing much to look forward to except for the cuteness overdose.
Potential: 0%

Posted on 6 October 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Bakumatsu

Short Synopsis: A pair of good-looking swordsmen from the Edo period get transported to an alternate reality.

Wooper’s review:
How many times has it been now that a bunch of Japanese military figures from different eras have appeared in an anime together? A lot of the recent ones (recent anime series, not military guys) tend to be game adaptations featuring a lot of handsome dudes, for what I’m confident are purely artistic reasons. Some of them sport better production than others, but this one unfortunately resides on the less impressive side of the spectrum. There are some really jarring visual moments here, with occasional character stills being tossed around the screen as a substitute for movement, and hurriedly drawn faces with mismatched eyes cropping up during a few of the medium shots. The soundtrack is one of the strangest I’ve heard in a long time. It features traditional Japanese music during quieter moments, but some of the chase sequences employ the sort of score you’d expect from a Hollywood comedy about a talking dog (seriously). The characters are full of knowledge about the show in which they’re starring, but none of the dialogue is terrible, which is nice for an anime so thrown-together in other respects. As for points of interest, we’ve got time travel, history, and that’s basically it. The series seems more interested in pushing its premise than laying the groundwork for Deeper Themes, and I don’t expect that preference to waver going forward. On balance, Bakumatsu isn’t my cup of tea, and it certainly won’t be included on any AOTY lists, but it’s not the worst of its kind.
Potential: 15%

Mario’s review:
Bakumatsu is another excuse for throwing pretty boys with awesome inhuman ability together to fight… what exactly? I know for a certain that I’m not within this show’s target demography. For the plot it tries to do something different by using time-travel, which itself makes for a fresher world design, but it brings a fair share of narrative issues as well, namely how these two fit in with this new world and how consistent other characters gonna be. Provided that we know next to nothing about these characters, it doesn’t come as a huge loss, still the inconsistency is there. Can’t say I care much for this cast, and in this episode we still have little clues on how that time-device works (conquer the world? Yeah, it’s the usual crap). Putting all the historical figures together getting a bit predictable lately, so if Bakumatsu doesn’t make full use of it then I don’t see the point of including it in the first place. Overall, it’s an easy skip for me.
Potential: 10%

 

Hinomaru-Zumou

Short Synopsis: A high school boy wants to be the best sumo wrestler in Japan.

Lenlo’s Review:
You know, it’s always been a pet peeve of mine with anime where the high schoolers look NOTHING like high schoolers. What’s the point of making it a high school series if they don’t look or act like high schoolers? Oh I guess I should talk about the actual anime at some point to, huh? Really there isn’t much to say. Its a sports anime, decent production and alright plot. The weakest part to me is the sport chosen as the subject material. Maybe it’s just me, but I just am not in to the sport. Sumo might be a cultural past time in Japan, but to me it’s just two fat guys pushing each other. It doesn’t help that the characters are ones we have already seen before, and the “power” scale is a bit ridiculous. 15 minutes straight of getting punched and no reactions? As someone who boxes in their free time, it stretches belief for that bare knuckles could garner so little a reaction. If you like sports, it might be for you, but there are better sports anime in just this season alone.
Potential: 30%

Aidan’s review:
Much like Lenlo commented, it is funny how the set these things in high school but draw full grown men as the cast. It’s a bit like those high school romantic comedies where everyone is clearly past their twenties yet they try to pass them off as teenagers. Well this is basically a sports anime through and through so as such the sport itself becomes center of the universe and treated as the holy grail of living. All mundane techniques are superimposed to the level of super powers and everyone learns just how amazing and beneficial playing is. So we got the usual gambit, the highly talented rookie, a romance that’s bound to go nowhere, the goal of getting to nationals which clearly is not going to happen in a single cour and a rival character set up. Honestly the single cour thing is my biggest gripe with these kinds of series as more or less all of them are serviceable but end just when things get started. Even when a second season comes along it generally enters a nonstop marathon of tournament arcs which lead nowhere. So my point is this, this show is fine for those just wanting something to pass the time but much like any other sports show it will end half baked.
Potential: 30%

 

Yagate Kimi ni Naru

Short Synopsis: A first year high schooler joins the student council after being inspired by an older girl, who later confesses to her.

Mario’s review:
Bloom into You opens with an overly pretentious monologue that I was afraid it’s just all about those vague feelings that amount to nothing. Thankfully later on we get to know the reason behind it and I feel much more related to her issues. But immediately after that, it raises another issues: the confession is way too abrupt, in a manner too clumsily, that it takes me out to the romance again. This first episode is told from the point of view of Yuu (while literally as we have some scenes in the first person perspective), that’s why Nanami’s confession doesn’t work because we know next to nothing about her character. In term of romance I can say that it attempts more at the feeling, rather than physical exploitation in the same vein of Citrus and the likes, but to tell an intimate romance takes a lot of insight and this is just half-way there. Design-wise, the flat, big eyes of the characters might get some time to get used to, but as a whole I’d say that the production is pretty good. One of the trick to make a good romance is that they need to establish characters we can care about, and so far Bloom into You just barely makes it there.
Potential: 40%

Wooper’s review:
It seems to me that the desired mood for Yagate Kimi ni Naru (English title “Bloom into You,” which is a very pretty localization) was delicacy. The soundtrack certainly supports this, with woodwinds and strings as a pleasant backdrop for the romantic woes of our main character Yuu. There’s a lot of floral imagery, which shouldn’t need any explanation. And the constant references to being swept off one’s feet, or experiencing a floating sensation, paint love as the most beautiful of all feelings. Pretty delicate, right? Not quite, actually. Yuu’s hand-wringing over how to turn down a romantically interested guy is the plot point on which the premiere turns, but the agony this causes her doesn’t mesh with all the talk about true love. Perhaps we’re meant to view Yuu as naive (I certainly did), but the show doesn’t put in the work to support that interpretation. On the contrary, it uses a handful of superfluous POV shots to put us directly into her shoes, and encourages us to celebrate her little victories. The confession right before the credits, too, is the opposite of delicate – it works more as a hook for the rest of the series than a moment of unfiltered emotion. Why would a successful rejection be the trigger that causes the older Nanami to fall for her new underclassman? I know she sees herself in Yuu, but is that any reason to blurt out that she loves her? Rather than feeling any sort of spark between them, my heart may as well have been a pile of soggy firewood during that scene. The show’s got sun-drenched backgrounds and evocative music down to a science, so there’s definitely something here for romance fans, but I prefer my relationships to be a bit more grounded.
Potential: 40%

Posted on 5 October 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Sora to Umi no Aida

Short Synopsis: A dumbass girl tries fishing in giant space tanks.

Aidan’s review:
I have several questions. One, if humanity has the ability to create planet sized tanks and fish then why can’t they repopulate the seas of earth? Two, why did a law need to be passed to allow women to become space fishers? Three, why are the fish monsters that need to be fought with mecha? Four, Why in the hell is the mecha powered by a phone app? Five, why is the tech both highly advanced yet stupidly retro? This and many more questions were pushed aside as my thoughts were immediately preoccupied with how ungodly annoying the main character is. She’s stupid and loud, neither of which is done in a charming way. Her voice grates on the eardrums and I thought that with her getting pulled into some space fishing mission that she might pull out some hidden talent or aptitude. But nope, she’s completely useless, jeopardises the entire mission, gives the guys a reason to act stupidly sexist and walks out of there like she did nothing wrong. And those phone app gods? Are those supposed to be the things that people pay real money to obtain in the game? This plot is just a complete mess. From what I hear this phone app is long dead and looking at this anime, it’s sure staying that way.
Potential: 0%

Mario’s review:
I give this show points for such an absurd take of its universe. It’s about a school for girls to learn a job of fishing in outer space, with our main girl’s inspiration to make sushi out of them. It’s so playful that I, for once, want to explore more about that world. It also has a slice-of-life feel with your usual stock characters so fans of this genre will find heaps to enjoy. The problem with the show is everything else. The main character isn’t that interesting and I don’t really like how the show keeps telling us how clueless she is. The fishing mission remains my least favorite part as it becomes somewhat of a exhibition for its game source. I also like the feminist voice but the show does it by antagonizing the male cast a bit too much. The production is on par but nothing really stands out either. Sily, enjoyable but ultimately forgettable, it’s strictly for fans of slice-of-life fans or viewers who is already familiar with the game.
Potential: 10%

 

Seishun Buta Yarou wa Bunny Girl-senpai no Yume wo Minai

Short Synopsis: A boy encounters a girl in a bunny suit that no one can see.

Aidan’s review:
The main protagonist really is what makes this one as his banter just works so well with all the cast. Still the main plot of this story about a girl essentially fading from existence does have its draw and the first episode does a good job setting things up. There is light novel cliche to be had but it differnates itself enough to stand out. The general comparisons I am hearing is Snafu and Bakemonogatari (though not quite as chatty), and I can see those in this. It’s difficult to say if this will keep up this level of quality, after all most light novels begin to falter once the volume 1 story is completed but so far I would recommend this as out of everything I have seen so far this season this has interested me the most.
Potential: 75%

Wooper’s review:
I hate disaffected, 2smart4u main characters in anime, like the ones in OreGairu or Classroom of the Elite. They’re a transparent means of representing the author’s dissatisfaction with Japanese society, without the effort of writing a believable personality. Bunny Girl (that’s what I’m calling this show, since the light novel name is too damn long) has the same problem as those series, centering on a young man with resting Kanye face whose middle name is almost certainly “Nonchalant.” Here’s a guy who, while talking to a stunning female classmate and actress, casually mentions that he threw his phone into the ocean because it was frustrating him. (We later learn of a deeper reason for this, but his unflappability in delivering the line is silly.) He’s surrounded by a bunch of attractive women, actually, but anime law states that he must be considered an outcast, a rule which the show makes sure to obey. His ponderous monologues on social isolation and “reading the atmosphere” are nearly as hard to watch as his little sister’s realization that she can’t sleep in his bed because of his morning wood. The show looks lousy, as well, due in large part to the failure of the compositing team to make the characters gel with the backgrounds. There were at least half a dozen shots here that looked like promo art slapped on top of unremarkable scenery. So, all that being said, is there any reason to watch Bunny Girl? Yes, in fact: its supernatural premise holds some real promise as a means of discussing adolescence. I don’t want to over-explain how it works (the show does more than enough of that), but if you can get past some tropey writing and a male lead who is Reddit’s iamverysmart board personified, there might be something here for you.
Potential: 25%

 

Zombieland Saga

Short Synopsis: Um…A girl decides to become an idol and…things happen.

Aidan’s review:
In the anime preview I stated that Zombieland Saga wouldn’t have anything to offer because everything has been done with Zombies. Allow me to say that I was absolutely, completely wrong on that. I have greatly underestimated Japan. When this started I saw that it was clearly gearing up for a bait and switch that the title of the anime obviously spoiled but the bait and switch is not what I was prepared for. This episode was nothing like I was expecting and just got weirder and more ludicrous as it went along. But it was pretty funny and I am most definitely watching the next episode because I must see where this crazy train is going. I highly recommend walking into this one as blind as possible. For a first episode this is pretty good but I do wonder just what this show will bring to the table for the rest of the series. But hey, I’m in.
Potential: 85%

Mario’s review:
I guess I should’ve seen this coming, combining two most popular pop-culture genres together. It’s a mash-up that can go north or south easily, but thankfully for Zombieland Saga the fundamental is strong enough to make it a fun ride so far. First, within the two genres it’s spoofed of, Zomebieland Saga understands and uses the tricks of the genre efficiency. The first part works reasonably well as a goofy comedy-horror, the same goes for the latter unspoiled aspect it makes fun of. What makes this show a winner, however, is that it knows how to up the ante and it controls the overall tones quite thoroughly. Every twists and turns make it wittier and more absurdist. It’s elevated by the strong screen presence of our main girl, who tries her best to stick it together. That manager’s antic can get in the way sometimes but overall they deliver some snappy chemistry together. Its visual direction is on par too as the show successfully handles many different moving aimless zombies, our panicked girl and their eccentric manager together without losing its wit. How it goes from here is another question given the premise can wear thin quickly, but on the other hand the other girls gain personality which can make their banters a fun show to watch.
Potential: 70%

Posted on 4 October 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Tensei Shitara Slime Datta Ken

Short Synopsis: A 30-something bland dude is stabbed and reincarnated as a OP slime.

Lenlo’s Review:
I remember reading this manga at one point and thinking it wasn’t too bad. It was a novel try at the Isekai formula, with the hero coming into the world as something other than human. As Aidan says, the best part is the time where he is learning to use his body and move around the cave. I loved all of the creative liberties the artists took here, it made the whole sequence a lot more interesting to watch than it was to read in the manga. The non-CGI dragon was nice novelty as well, really the visuals were pretty strong all around. From the looks of things, it will continue to be a good looking series. The big problem for me is that the manga got samey and stale relatively quickly. I expect the same to happen to the anime, as the ideas repeat and the OPness of the Lead Slime/RPG mechanics starts to grind on your patience. If you like Isekai, this is one of the better ones no doubt and will be a unique experience. If they aren’t your cup of tea, then this won’t be either. Side Note: The ending shot of destroying the computer was the funniest joke in the entire episode.
Potential: 50%

Aidan’s review:
To give points where points are due, it’s nice to see a non-cgi dragon. But I deduct points when the adult voice of the protagonist was replaced with a much more comedic lighter toned one. Sure it might be more suitable but it was also more annoying. The story clearly isn’t tracking itself all that seriously what with the MCs death being because of random guy running in straight line with knife and the protagonists last wish being for his kouhai to destroy his porn collection. I do think that they were quite creative in showing the sensory deprivation that the MC had when he first woke up as a slime without eyes or ears. The team had fun animationing that I bet. But this first episode was primarily just exposition and the MC getting to grips with his new body. Once again the world has RPG mechanics which are never explained and once again the MC is given broken abilities from the start though these seem decided based on his last thoughts. The best part of an isekai is usually the beginning where the main character is getting to grips with things but as shown in the opening eventually he will obtain a human body and that’s where I lost all interest in this story. What we have at the moment is a decent isekai story sure to scratch and itch for those looking for it.
Potential: 65%

 

Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru

Short Synopsis: A broke college student moves into a new place on the condition that he’ll take part in Japan’s biggest relay race.

Wooper’s review:
For me, Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru is a shot at redemption for this particular wing of Production I.G. Their adaptation of Ballroom e Youkoso fumbled the ball around the midway point, so I’m already nervous about this new series. The similarities are numerous: same Haikyuu-esque designs (minus the giraffe necks), same musical composer and same band doing the OP, same emphasis on sweeping motion, same sense of camaraderie between athletes. Thankfully, there are a couple key differences, as well: KazeFui’s principal cast is comprised of college students, and it’s based on a completed, award-winning novel, rather than an ongoing, sporadically-updated manga. The show is a little tropey, wasting no time in introducing all the attractive male characters living under one roof, but it doesn’t feel exploitative, and the dialogue is actually pretty authentic! The guys talk about food, booze, books, TV quiz shows, and how to disguise that pesky hole in the floor so the landlord won’t get on their case. Ultimately, though, the conversation turns to running, which is the canvas on which the show will paint its story, and the tie that binds the two main characters (whose relationship is already somewhat nuanced after just 22 minutes). How the show looks in motion will make or break it, and so far it’s making it. You’d be a fool to expect zero CG crowd members in a modern two cour series about competitive running, but so far KazeFui has been au naturale. There are a lot of positive signs in this first episode, but I don’t want to shout it from the rooftops – there may still be time for that, though.
Potential: 75%

Lenlo’s Review:
Kaze Fui is the first anime of this season I have put on my “Watch” list. The setup took its time, introduced the characters and made me interested in the people before dropping the story hook. The characters, by the way, whom I love. All of them. From Lazy Engineering Senior to Quiz Boy. Somehow Kaze Fui gave them juuust enough time to stake out a small spot for themselves. As Wooper mentioned, the dialogue was very authentic. I was interested in what they were saying and none of it felt expository for expositions sake. Really though the most striking thing is the animation. Kaze Fui looks gooooood. I don’t care what Wooper says, I enjoyed Ballroom and thought it was great in motion, and Kaze Fui so far is doing that again. I have no idea how Production I.G. is going to make running of all things interesting though. Ballroom dance is dynamic, unique and has a lot of interesting movement. Running though just seems so… basic. Like we will have seen all there is to see before to long. If Kaze Fui can pull of that aspect, then I think we have a winner here. At the very least, I will be watching it.
Potential: 80%

 

Ken En Ken: Aoki Kagayaki

Short Synopsis: A group of kids were separated after the enemy wiped out their village. Now, they pursue different paths and possibly become enemies… or not.

Lenlo’s Review:
Why am I watching this? No seriously, Mario, why is this on the list for the season? Sure sure, we can’t judge the animation by general anime standards cause of Chinese imports. Really, it’s not that bad in some places. The sword/spear fight near the start was kinda nice. But the Direction? The actual story and characters? It just feels all over the place. Like they had a lot of ideas they wanted to do, and couldn’t narrow it down. For all aspiring writers/designers out there, remember this one simple adage I was taught. “Kill your darlings” or else you get stuff like Ken En Ken.
Potential: 0%

Mario’s review:
We’re sure familiar with these Chinese inputs by now. Something I must note after watching two dozen of them season by season. The general reception for the animation in Chinese products is subpar, especially compared to anime counterpart. But I see it this way, Chinese animation industry (and Western cartoon on that end), don’t usually emphasis on animation like the Japanese does; as a result I don’t think it’s really fair to judge its fluidity quality from anime standard. The reason I’m bringing this up because I believe the production of Ken En Kei in general is pretty decent. It’s the direction that was a mess. We don’t have any real sense of how the story flows since it’s too busy to introduce too many characters and its plots. It has some nice world-buildings, but the characters in it are so far, unmemorable. As it stands, Ken en Kei functions more like a game. We get to some narrative progressions, but it feels all too weak with the messy packing that it fails to leave an impact.
Potential: 20%

Posted on with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Double Decker! Doug & Kirill

Short Synopsis: A police officer finds himself working together with a special agency.

Lenlo’s Review:
Double Decker surprised me with this first episode. Starting off, the CGI and overly moody lighting had me worried it was going to be a grimdark, I’m-so-serious fare. The quick jump to light hearted action romp was a pleasant surprise though. Kirill, the lead, is a real character who after I got used to his special brand of stupid, was pretty entertaining. If nothing else, he’s not your usual bland MC. He has style, however ridiculous it may be. It also kept the exposition to a minimum, which I am thankful for. I feared a lot of drawn out narrator BS about Anthem and how the world worked, but Double Decker seems content to take it slow. A good sign. My one concern is the CGI and how heavily it will be used, because the constant jumping between it and 2D really bugged me. Still, not a bad start to a season I had pretty low hopes for.
Potential: 70%

Aidan’s review:
This certainly is reminding me a lot of Tiger and Bunny which is good considering it’s a spinoff. The buddy cop nature of the main duo and the way the show doesn’t take itself too seriously is quite reminiscent of it. But I feel that part of the appeal of Tiger and Bunny was the commercialised nature of the superheroes which doesn’t appear to play any real role here. In fact this show is pretty much like any anime OVA about cops taking on supernatural threats which can be nostalgic for some but rather derivative in itself. That said I found it a decently enjoyable watch though I don’t have much incentive to continue. The characters are fun and it makes for decent entertainment but it doesn’t really excel in any way, just being passable. I would say if you are looking for something with a saturday morning cartoon feel or a buddy cop dynamic then this could make for a decent time waster.
Potential: 60%

 

RErideD: Tokigoe no Derrida

Short Synopsis: A scientist finds out about a bug in his robots that contribute to the end of the world. Also, birthday party, conspiracy and time-travel throw in to the fun.

Lenlo’s Review:
You know, maybe it was a bad idea for me to touch on a time travel series so soon after Steins;Gate 0, because I am burnt out on them. It doesn’t help that RErideD starts its season by just throwing exposition and information at me from the get go. It doesn’t help that, as Mario said, the birthday that is no doubt supposed to make me care about these characters just fell flat. The most interesting part was the corporate conspiracy aspect for me. Yeah, the hallucinations were curious to say the least, but with nothing to really go off with them they are kinda just… there for me. As far as characters go, I barely remember a single one of them after watching, barring the lead Derrida. They all just feel… bland. Overall it looks like a series that will make it or break it by the 3rd episode once the story gets going in full. If you have an interest in time travel, stick it out. If you’re burned out like me, then it’s probably not worth it.
Potential: 35%

Mario’s review:
RErideD has some neat ideas, but this first episode feels the need to feed us its worldbuilding a bit too much. This first episode clearly serves as a prelude, where we get to know where our main character comes from, its universe and its premise… so far, it’s a hot mess. We learn a bit too much, although it raises more question than clarity. We know about its descend to hell near-future when the robots basically overloaded and take over the world. We know about the project being Derrida and his father’s brainchild, then we learn about another project of leaping time and then characters that would be important later on (in a birthday party that feels superficial at best), and I haven’t gotten to the main catalyst of the episode. It doesn’t help that Derrida’s motivation and personality are an open book, which makes him feel more like a first-person device than a real character. Being said that I’m sure interested to see what the hell this world is now, and the current characters and how they fit in to all this. Also, when it hits it can produce some inspiring moment (I’m referring to the hallucination image, which might or might not be real). The story really starts in the second episode, so until then we will have a better idea how well this story is going to pan out.
Potential: 50%

 

Akanesasu Shoujo

Short Synopsis: A ritual-obsessed girl travels to another world and meets her warrior doppelganger.

Lenlo’s Review:
Everything about Akanesasu leads me to believe that, had it gone the horror route, it could have done quite well. It opened with some interesting, possibly sinister, tones. The lighting did wonders setting a mood. And then it went full mecha-magical-girl on me and I lost what little interest I had. I will say, the CGI is pretty good and it’s nowhere near the worst premise for this kind of show I have seen. Really Akanesasu’s biggest fault is that it’s just not my cup of tea. For those that enjoy some “sit back and relax, no moralizing fun” I think Akanesasu will fit in fine for them. So long as the monster of the week stays interesting it shouldn’t have a problem.
Potential: 40%

Wooper’s review:
There’s a point in this premiere where a supporting character complains, “If they’re just going to play boring old music, they might as well play nothing at all.” In addition to being a terrible perspective on art, this seems to be the general philosophy of Akanesasu Shoujo – if it’s not modern, the show wants nothing to do with it. That means we need a group of five girls with different hair colors and personality traits, another world for them to visit, and a soundtrack that never strays too far from Yuuki Hayashi’s work on My Hero Academia (apart from one piano/synth track early on which I swear was inspired by the Gen IV Pokemon games). The girls are mostly forgettable, so I started mentally referring to them as though they were dwarves: Quirky, Quiet, Brainy, Proper, and Trendy. The dwarves travel to the land of CG snakes and meet the main character’s doppelganger, who somehow accompanies them back to Earth. What happens afterwards was the only part of the show to interest me, as Quirky I offers Quirky II a place to crash for a short time, and their distinct personalities begin to inform you about the differences in their worlds. In the era of 12 episode series orders, though, the show won’t have the luxury of peeling back any layers, and Q II returns to the land of perpetual twilight by the end of the premiere anyway, so if you plan on picking this up, expect an info dump sooner rather than later.
Potential: 30%

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

Shoujo ☆ Kageki Revue Starlight

Short Synopsis: Students at a girls’ music academy compete for a top spot in a surreal stage play.

Wooper’s review

Kinema Citrus saves anime yet again. Last year they produced our AOTY Made in Abyss, and now they’ve tapped Ikuhara devotee Tomohiro Furukawa to helm what may go down as the best idol series of the decade. It’s not actually about idols – the show is set at an all-girls music academy that emphasizes contemporary theater – but it *does* have a big cast of cute girls who dance to music. That’s where the similarities to the genre end, however, as this show is highly symbolic, beautifully scored, and lavishly produced. Just listen to the orchestra that plays as the students enter the dance studio around the three minute mark. There’s a gentle air of mystery to it, as though the show is inviting you to consider what’s truly transpiring at this school, even as the characters act cute and say their usual Good Mornings. Before that, there’s a beautifully staged intro that gives way to an image of eight girls lying on a flight of stairs, with a blood red curtain that connects them and foreshadows conflict (and perhaps even death). Things get overtly Ikuhara-esque around the halfway mark, with dream sequences, yuri undertones, and talking animals all making their mandatory appearances. This weirdness culminates in some of the best fight/dance sequences I’ve seen since the “Both of You, Dance Like You Want to Win” episode of Evangelion. To provide too many details would spoil the experience, since the last scene is such a departure from what comes before, but I’ll just say this: if you think you’ve got a handle on anime transformation sequences, Revue Starlight will turn your perception on its head. The only real shortcoming of this series is the same-faced character designs, but even that works to create a familiar sensation that is shattered by the episode’s end. This is the kind of anime that everybody should check out, at least for the premiere – if you’re on its wavelength, you’re in for a hell of a time.

Potential: 95%

Mario’s review:

Well, what a second half this one was. Initially, when I watched the first half, I took it as a above-average idol show and thinking to myself “the rest would have blown me up in order to not drop this” and that was exactly how I felt, totally blew away. This show (especially the magnificent Starlight fight) has a clear Utena-vibe, which come as no surprise since the director Tomohiro Furukawa was an apprentice of Ikuhara himself. What’s more impressive is that the whole fight at the end justifies all the things come before that. Not only it’s weird in a delightful way (talking giraffe!!), it’s inspirational and just downright expressive like those Utena’s duels. You can also pretty much take these fights as a dream, or the performance, or the audition and it all makes sense. In fact, now thinking back it’s more that these girls won’t work together like idol shows, but will have to fight against each other for the main spot. I’m thrilled on that. The characters, however, are on the underdeveloped side, but I’m sure when these “stage performances” start we will start to learn more about them. Personally, I’m excited to see how this story is gonna pan out.

Potential: 70%

Aidan’s review:

Well this one completely blind sighted me. I originally wrote this one off completely, but then watched the trailer and thought there might be more to it but still wrote it off again. As it was the case there was in fact more more to this one but allow me to be the contrarian to contrast the two excited ducks above. Take note that the thing that makes this show stand out is the very clear inspirations from Ikuhara, in particular Utena. The director it seems has worked with Ikuhara’s previous works and learned some tricks. But let me make clear, I am not a fan of Ikuhara. I find Utena fascinating but to me Ikuhara’s works is style promoting the illusion of substance. If this new guy can take Ikuhara’s style and give it genuine substance then he will have sold me on this particular show. But the other hurdle is that this episode was ⅓ Utena and ⅔ love live. Outside of the surprise wammy this series was a above average idol anime and it’s going to need more in order to prove itself. This series has managed to grab my attention by playing it’s strongest hand but now that the surprise is out it’s going to have to measure up to those which inspired it. What I am basically saying is, less idol training, more character development and girls getting pushed off of tokyo tower. (I really liked that scene.)

Potential: 50%

 

Tenrou: Sirius the Jaeger

Short Synopsis: A group of vampire hunters enter Tokyo to hunt their enemies.

Aidan’s review:

On a production level, aside from some awkward CGI, this series is top of the line. Fantastic animated action with great backgrounds and a nice setting. However story wise this feels far too familiar with the squad hunting supernatural creatures. There are plenty with that premise, even Blood + did that with vampires. I even got some Blade vibes from how the series opened. I give credit to the cast for having an Irishman but I can’t say anyone in the cast stands out. I will say it’s not as if the story has bad writing or it’s done poorly as in both cases this is done quite well. The problem more lies in the fact that it all feels done before. But if that aspect does not bother you then I am sure you will enjoy this one for the fight scenes and general production values. The story won’t wow you but get past that and this is an enjoyable watch.

Potential: 60%

Lenlo’s Review:

Aidan is right about one thing, Jaeger is certainly one of the best looking/produced anime of this season. Everything, CGI aside, just looks good. I disagree on the story aspect though. Unlike similar anime this season like Phantom however, where our cast just… stumbles together, it feels like things are actually happening in Jaeger. It probably has to do with our cast being the aggressors, the ones acting, where as in Phantom they are just reacting. It made me much more interested in what was going on. Sure, the monster hunting story has been done before. But that doesn’t matter to me, so long as its done well. Just look at the plethora of fantasy novels about young chosen ones rising up to defeat the great evil. Originality is less important than general quality. And Jaeger has, so far, a lot of quality.

Potential: 75%

 

High Score Girl

Short Synopsis: A boy has a rivalry with a girl who plays games at the arcade.

Aidan’s review:

Though fully CGI, I found it rather bareable though that might be because the episode was mainly focused on video game screens. This does feel like a series that was better suited to a short format as this episode contains three separate stories between these two. The positives is that this story has a lot of factoids about various video game techniques which is quite interesting and the nostalgia is heavy with this one if you are a nineties kid. But the bad side of this is that the comedy is very much the “Shout till it’s funny” variety or focuses on our protagonist getting beaten up by the girl. I don’t find this show all that funny but I do like the featured games and learning about glitches and tricks used in them. Overall I find this show just alright and it is rather a shame that because Netflix has acquired the licence that to follow it I would have to rely on fansubs of questionable quality.

Potential: 30%

Mario’s review:

This 90s arcade rom-com manga was a hit back when it first run, throughout many disputes regarding legal issues of using all these games’ characters, now it becomes a full CG show licensed by Netflix. Which mean, not many people gonna watch this based on these conditions alone. My very first impression after watching this is that the CG looks “cheap”. Characters on games look on point, but our characters move way too stiff, and the art in general in uninspired. The series’ first episode runs several small encounters where those two main meets at the arcade and play game, but based on what I heard there will be an arc and the story deepens later on. So basically this episode introduces these two kids and gives us a “feel” of the year 1991, both of which I regard it as barely succeed. There’s some odd pacing at the beginning, which take me awhile to realize what’s going on. Haruo is the protagonist that is easy to follow, mostly because he has a keen sense of his world. Oono, too, with the way she behaves hint at her pressure at home and the two has a strange bond of sharing the same hobby. Story-wise I can get behind but I’m more worried about the production, which can become more unbearable as it continues.

Potential: 30%

Posted on 15 July 2018 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Angolmois: Genkou Kassenki

Short Synopsis: The ruler of an island hires some death row prisoners to protect her island from Mongolian invasion.

Aidan’s review:

A pretty strong first episode but you can tell this isn’t going to be historically accurate. This is certainly very shounenfied history with strongmen who can break manicales and a cast with their own heighted superhuman aspects. I mean a ninja assassin managed to jump ludicrously high into the air and land on his boat so if anything we might as well consider this history told by a storytelling exaggerating the details. The story certainly wants to look like it was painted on scrolls as the full episode has a filter place over it, one which I feel distracts more than it enhances. It’s fine for still shots but when the camera starts panning that filter just sticks out far too much. Other than that this makes for a rather enjoyable watch, not particular deep or outstanding but interesting enough so far with fairly decent characters. I was surprised by how many voice actors I was able to recognise as well, hello there Tora. If you are a fan of shounen anime this could very well be for you and even if not it proves to be a good watch so far.

Potential: 70%

Mario’s review:

Looks like we got a solid historical thriller dose of the season. I was mildly intrigued by the settings – where Mongol invades Nippon (just a historical trivia here but Mongolian Empire was extremely powerful in the early era), but I didn’t expect it to be this strong. The production, in particular, has extra grainy filter which add to the seediness of the era, and I particularly like the raining filter that looks just like a moving painting. The fights have some dynamic choreography there. We also have a strong male lead that worth investing to, a hero type who has his dark past. I’d have preferred the princess of this island stays cruel like she first appeared, given when she displays her weak side, it treads the well trodden path. The story is what I’m a bit worried about. We still don’t know for sure how much of disbelief we need to suspend regarding the cast’s combat skills. I mean, we have a guy who literally parkour roll 20 meters away from where he fights to his ship, which for me is just comically ridiculous. The story establishes its main concept, however how they execute it so that they can keep our interest is hard. This show reminds me a bit of Shoukoku no Altair: rich history context but too crammed with plot progressions and many layers of side characters. The leaner it gets the better. We shall see on this then.

Potential: 60%

 

Shinya! Tensai Bakabon

Short Synopsis: The cast of a 70s anime struggles to find a new look for the modern era.

Wooper’s review:

This is a postmodern reboot of a 50 year old manga by Fujio Akatsuka, author of Osomatsu-kun from the same time period. That series was the basis for the Osomatsu-san anime from three years ago, which saw Studio Pierrot use well-loved characters to provide irreverent commentary on current trends in anime and Japanese culture in general. If you liked what Pierrot did with that show, you’ll probably like this one, especially since it features a gag where Bakabon undergoes surgery to become a set of sextuplets. The surgeon is none other than Black Jack, who appears briefly to turn Bakabon’s dad into a woman (while preserving his new voice, courtesy of Jun Fukuyama), and if you’re with me so far, you’ve probably arrived at the conclusion that this anime is totally bonkers. The premiere spent most of its time taking the “things sure have changed” sentiment to ridiculous extremes, dealing with its need for a new coat of paint by trying every shade at five different stores. While that’s a theme that non-Japanese viewers can grasp, there were at least a dozen references to personalities and cultural practices that sailed over my head. This was less of a problem in Osomatsu-san, which focused intently on the antics of its characters without worrying about what year it was. Hopefully the new and improved(?) Bakabon leaves its identity crisis behind after another episode or two – if it does, the show might be worth your time each week this summer.

Potential: 60% if you liked Osomatsu-san, 20% otherwise

Mario’s review:

So, this one goes for Osomatsu-san route. When adapting a beloved classic manga, it always raises an issue of how relevant it is for the new audience today. And that’s exactly the topic this first episode addresses. This new version of Bakabon is a whacky take on the length these characters would go to adapt themselves and appeal to the new market. If you’re big on meta-jokes you’ll find a lot to love here. Fans of the recent Osomatsu would find themselves at home as well, although in that regard I don’t find the humor as fresh as it was with Osomatsu-san. The real story will begin next week, and you can expect it has all the bawdy humor (and the same artstyle) that made Osomatsu-san a hit in recent years. Not a bad way to approach this classic material, but it feels like an inferior Osomatsu-san at best.

Potential: 30%

 

Lord of Vermilion: Guren no Ou

Short Synopsis: When Tokyo is surrounded by a red mist, cut off from the outside world, it is up to the young few with blood awakened by the mist to gather together and discover what has happened to Tokyo, or die trying.

Mario’s review:

I give it points for not outrightly terrible, but it’s ultimately a forgettable title. There’s two main issues with Vermilion, that it takes its premise a tad too seriously, and that both the characters and the story aren’t that interesting to hold any interest. The show starts right at the end (or maybe not?), when it’s clear that our hero team members fight each others to death, accompanied by generic lines (“that’s the only way I could come up to kill you, sister”. Oh hell I care) and some ridiculous deaths. Then the show goes back to the present and introduces characters that way too bland with not even one memorable characteristic (Main guy especially receives the “prefect” status). The plot itself has many holes (like why many of them dissolved into thin air, while others don’t; why this red wall of Berlin cut off the supply but leaves the food alone? What happened to the people that dissolve into dust?), and based from the flashforward it looks like the cast will try the special power from the red mist and pays their own price for that. I’m not particularly interested to see it play out at all.

Potential: 10%

Lenlo’s Review:

So, I know I referenced Kekkai Sensen in a previous first impression, but Vermillion really is a wanna-be version of it. City cut off by otherworldly mist/barrier? Check. Otherworldly monsters.inhabitants? Check. Blood based superpowers? Another check. However unlike Kekkai Sensen, which revels in its absurdity and just has fun with itself, Vermillion takes itself far to seriously. Like it’s trying to be some kind of fantastical drama. I just couldn’t get into it. If your ok with some good natured fun getting sprinkled across your fantastical drama, something that doesn’t take itself to seriously while still having a story to tell, go watch Kekkai Sensen instead of this. It’s just better.

Potential: 0%

CHANGE USERNAME
Lenlo
That was an interesting comparison. Cool to see how far anime has come.
Lenlo
I cant wait to watch Kaze Fui tonight to answer those questions Kazier!
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Someone has done a comparison video for Dororo for a scene in the new one, comparing it with the old one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j38anJY3BtA
Kaiser-Eoghan
Maybe some people found the flashback scenes too dramatic, but I didn't mind, they worked for me.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo:One thing that has come to mind, how would it go if he encountered the coach again, but in the present?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo:I also liked how the flashback was done in a grainy looking style.
If I found someone who was finding it hard to get into this show, I think that this episode would win them over and it’s the episode I found myself feeling the most.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Episode 13 of Kaze ga tsuyoku is the fitting and perfect culmination of what has come before it and all is now essentially out on the table dramatically and all the better for it because of how well this series has built itself up.
Animosh
In essence it is still a battle shounen though: even if the fights always have narrative weight (it's not just fighting for the sake of fighting), the characters are to a significant extent developed through fights. So if that's not your thing it might be a hard sell even with its amazing animation and sympathetic cast.
Animosh
@Lenlo/Kaiser: the problem with Mob though is that its first two episodes are by far the worst of the series. So if you give it a try you should watch at least until the third episode, and possibly even episode 4/5 (since it's the first really good arc of the series imo).
Animosh
Yeah, it must be tough to blog three shows in the span of two days, especially with how long your posts tend to be. I find it hard enough already just to keep up with everything!
Lenlo
Ugh. Didnt get to Kaze Fui tonight. A shame. This whole Dororo/MobPsycho then Kaze Fui air schedule is gonna be a pain. You can expect Kaze Fui's maybe... Thurs? Not sure yet. Busy night
Kaiser-Eoghan
*newer not old
Kaiser-Eoghan
Some additional things I always notice in certain things, sometimes in these old medieval films or shows, in the American ones the characters occassionally don't look earthy enough.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Koyomi from clannad i mean
Kaiser-Eoghan
Somewhere in my head Koyomi is this weird anime take on an autist.
Amagi
All she did what stupid, but everyone was saying that she was a genius that would probably soon develope the theory of eversthing so it must be real even if she's only ever smart when the plots needs her to do some sudden computer hack or something.
Amagi
Smart characters can only be written by smart writers. So sometimes writers just tell that the characters are smart but you don't actually witness it. It's either shown by using such wise one liners or just because someone else is telling the audience they're smart. Reminds me of that one Kyoani genius girl.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Can't do the walk, don't do the talk.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can buy it more for a tough old dude.
Kaiser-Eoghan
On more thought, alot of it has to do with who is saying them. Men who look like children with no charisma.
Amagi
I absolutely hate these one liners too. Especially when you can already hear them in the trailer.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I hate it when scripts coverup for awful characters by spamming quips at you.
Amagi
It's why I dislike so much stuff that gets released today. All these run-of-the-mills, copies, clones, alternative universes, sequels and so on.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But, beyond cgi, its the modern take wise-ass stuff that drives me nuts.
Amagi
Even if you're just drawing a landscape you need creativity. Where are the shadows, the lighting, what atmosphere should it trigger and so on. Maybe even a hidden motif.
Kaiser-Eoghan
ANARCHY KINO-MACHE!
Amagi
Yeah creativity is, well, should be among the most important things out there. I mean movies, anime, etc are actual art, art is meaningless without creativity. At least the narrating type of art.
Amagi
Kinda miss these anime. They're rare to begin with but I can't imagine anyone creating such a thing nowadays. Like Blame/Ergo/Texhno, even Lain. They never sold though, so I can even kind of understand it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Ergo worked for me up until the ending.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think clever is too often a miused word by people when they describe things. They reduce it to being "Just a smart storyline", when really it is more suited a word to something in tune with its creative side.
Amagi
Ergo Proxy even had a dense/heavy plot that was developing while you're busy figuring the setting out. And many things were shown indirectly. It was one of the rare anime I had to watch twice to get it. Texhnolyze is also such a thing but more bizarre in my opinion, less logical than Ergo, but still great.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Its really really nice knowing that I can talk to someone like you about this on my level .
Amagi
It's why I love series with strong settings so much. See Blame for example. Even Made in Abyss. You never know what kind of landscape you will see next and in Blame everything is fucked to behin with.
Amagi
Yeah. Well we do watch movies to feel excitement, and you can't really feel that if you can guess what happens next.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Now obviously these types of things can end up a coin toss of it either works or it doesn't, but I appreciate the risk taken.
Amagi
I tolerate it for games because whereas I still don't like it there, at least the game as an additional value which is the gameplay. So even with weak atmosphere I am still enjoying it for being a good game. But when I watch a movie I want get sucked in to some degree instead of being aware that I am just the audience (or the player).
Kaiser-Eoghan
I like that feeling of I don't know whats going to happen next.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I like the idea of a madman getting to do a movie and running with his imagination.
Amagi
It's like dreaming and suddently hearing your real life cat meowing and realising that it's just a dream, you're in the bed and about to wake up. And yes this is exactly why I dislike CGI
Kaiser-Eoghan
But sometimes people cry pretentious wrongly, when there wasn't really any intended thing to get.
Amagi
It's why I am so easily angered over little errors or writing problems. Because they destroy the atmosphere more than anything else.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I mean, I do like themes, characters etc, but my favourite experience is nightmare/dreamscapes.
Amagi
If the atmosphere is missing it doesn't matter what story you are telling, everything feels kinda hollow. Doesn't mean that show with weak atmo and great plot is bad, but it would be ten times better with the proper atmosphere.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I hate this modern idea of "It HAS to be coherent or mean something or follow some kind of linear or logical thing or some kind of rules"
Amagi
@Kaiser: Yeah it's why I often say that atmosphere is the most important part of a story, actually.
Kaiser-Eoghan
With cgi I am constantly reminded I am watching a film.
Amagi
Don't know all of the titles you mentioned, will probably look into a few of those I don't know.
Kaiser-Eoghan
What I love about these old slavic art films, is no longer being aware of the world around me when I watch them. They use actual crafted cinematography so they can still feel like you're living it, despite being so unreal.
Amagi
Technobabylon and Gemini Rue are my favorites. These games capture this fucked up feeling of noir-punk and dark cyberpunk perfectly and have a bunch of great twists and character arcs.
Amagi
I like this type of darkness somehow, as well as trash punk and noir stuff. I do enjoy the Wadjet Eyes games for that reason.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Naturally I loved both
Kaiser-Eoghan
Hard to be God and On the silver globe are insane, there's this sense of what the utter hell am I watching? But you feel like you've been transported someone else entirely.
Amagi
"We" (Мы) is also a Russian dystopia novel, it shared a bunch of similarities with 1984 but was written long before Orwell had had even started with 1984.
Amagi
STALKER has also made me check out a bunch of Russian/Ukrainian novels. I love their ideas. Their dystopias and everything.
Amagi
Slavs are doing good games right now. Looking forward playing this Russia Fallout clone.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can't remember the name of the Soviet animation with the robot that keeps on working after everyone's dead.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But crappy puns aside. Dead mans letters, letters never sent, Ivan's child hood, Andreii Rublev, Cranes are flying and I am Cuba have amazing cinematography.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wanna b a Potemkin master....
....like no-one ever was =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
Dead mans letters is up there with Threads as being one of the best apocalypse films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*evangelion
Kaiser-Eoghan
Or would that be Nyguen genesis Evagelion =)
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: You'll always be my ho chi main man minh Mario =)
SuperMario
I love Soviet cinema. Yeah the Mirror has that monochrome part. And they aren’t that big as they used to be but Soviet animation has great history
Kaiser-Eoghan
Stalker is an excellent science fiction film and not neccesarily because of need to anaylze it, but because it works of a visual-psychic level.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Zerkalo/mirror is a great example of this, just a stream of the directors thoughts, all visual impressionism, there might be a scene where I couldn't tell you the why or the what, but it'd make me feel something.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Basically where to understand, is simply to feel.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Its always fascinating that some filmakers have the ability to just let the film wash over you and move you with intricately crafted arthouse visuals. That they can do that, without character arcs/intellectual message/monologues.
Amagi
Speaking of soviet stuff I kinda want another movie or maybe even a cartoon like some of these old soviet movies that were partly monochrome and partly colored during important scenes. Didn't solaris have that too? - I know the monochrome parts were done to save money, but it was kinda impressive seeing colorless movies turning colorful ones during emotional scenes.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Definately something that would appeal to me in terms of alternate style of animation. I'm actually quite a fan of different, out there animation styles.
Lenlo
Heres the ED
Lenlo
Yup, paint on glass. The entire ED for the first season was done in that style. Mob loves to use obscure or generally unusual art styles to sell the other worldlyness of its spirits.
Kaiser-Eoghan
That sounds pretty cool.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Excuse me....paint on glass effects in Mob? There was a Soviet animator that used that style.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*earlier
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Again you psychically read my mind =P I was just thinking that about Farnese arlier.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: I think I've accepted there are some manga I need to wait until they're finished before go back to them either due to slow scans or because they've gone on so long or go on hiatus.
Amagi
I think the later half as well as the hiatus killed it for me. Can't deal with that two chapters per year policy.
Lenlo
I, however, am still a rabid Berserk fanboy. :D
Amagi
I am also never a fan of characters completely changing personalities once they're redeemed. Farnese was an interesting villain and while I agree that she needed to overcome her trauma the current Farnese is just some soulless helpful big sister type. She only exists to care for Cjaskar and at some point even Cjaskar's eternal problem was starting to get on my nerves.
Amagi
@Kaiser: Same opinion on Berserk again. The arc before that with the inquisition tower was one of the highpoints of the manga, everything went downhill once Schierke had joined which is kinda sad since it was one of my favorite series before that.
Lenlo
Mob is much more character focused than OPM. OPM riffs on Shounen, while Mob is a much more character driven drama kinda series, with shounen elements. I would give it a shot for an episode or two.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: Berserk started losing me when he started travelling around with those kids.
@Amagi/Animosh: Do you believe that Mob has better choreography than onepunch?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi:I will give exceptions to magical elements if a show can produce an adventure narrative worthwhile or if it’s a magical girl show.
If magic is featured in an occult horror fashion or in an exploitative way, I will also lean toward allowing it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Amagi: While I very much doubt Mob would be my thing, given how I generally felt indifferent to onepunch man and bias against shounen action, yes the art for Mob, when elevated by an anime adaptation lends itself to something unique looking and I can praise that.
Lenlo
I think ONE's style fits Mob better, and Murata's style fits OPM better. So yeah, Bones chose well on that front
Amagi
Not only are overdesigned characters really bad for movement which is actually needed to make a series and their characters feel alive but they also often look really bad in my opinion and there is a limit on how overdesigned a character can be until I stop taking them seriously at all.
Amagi
Yeah. I also honestly think that many anime are suffering from overdesigning.
Animosh
And I like Mob's artstyle a lot as well. It gives the series a unique look, and it gives the animators all the freedom they could wish for to play around with the characters (and basically everything else) as they see fit. Add Bones to the mix, and you have one of the best-looking series out there.
Animosh
I prefer the full ONE experience too. It's part of the reason why I slightly prefer Mob Psycho. OPM looks great and all, but there's way too much meaningless fighting going on in the manga lately. I prefer the tighter and more consistently subversive storytelling of the webcomic, although I still enjoy the manga a lot as well (and the story climaxes in particular tend to look freaking amazing).
Amagi
Different example since this is actual fantasy but I also prefered the early Berserk series over the later parts. When the supernatural horror stuff was more of a hidden thing appearing around Guts and otherwise just on special occasions, while most people didn't even believe such things exist. I prefer that over the high (dark) fantasy we have now although I get what Miura is aiming at.
Amagi
I guess I just have a thing for this secret-club mentality. I prefer it over worlds with blatan magical powers everyone uses and knows about.
Amagi
It's weird but I almost always hate anime with and about magic, the more fantasy it is the less I like it (usually, not always), but then again occult stuff is always totally my thing.
Amagi
I am quite happy they stick with the original Mob Psycho designs from ONE for this series. The OPM manga is probably one of the best looking things out there but ONE's artstyle has a lot of charme and makes characters more unique, especially if looks as polished as in the anime adaption.
Lenlo
Mmm cant wait to watch it. Kaze Fui, still great
Anonymous3309336
I really like how Kurahana admitted that he let his emotions get to him when he threw that punch at the coach back then. Now he feels remorseful about that day and how he made enemies from his former teammates.
Anonymous3309336
Meanwhile, looks like the next episode will focus on Prince again and his attempts to further improve his time.
Anonymous3309336
Meanwhile, his new teammates understand the pain he's been going through and want him to move on from that. Definitely as some of the best writing of this season.
Anonymous3309336
That punch he threw at the coach was certainly well-deserved, but I can see why the other teammates including Sakaki would come to despise him.
Anonymous3309336
This episode of Kaze ga... was great as always, as we see more of Kurahana's past and how his awful coach made Sakaki and the rest of his former team turn on him.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I wouldn't have minded reading several volumes of seeing Satou on the run.
Animosh
Thanks! That's good to know. An alternate ending could have been fun, but I suppose the ending of the anime was fitting, and if it ain't broke don't fix it.
Amagi
Looks like it's going to end. I guess it ends the same but we can't say for sure yet.
Animosh
For those of you still reading Happy Sugar Life: is the manga continuing past the anime? Or does it look like it's going to end in the same way? If it takes a different path it might be worth checking it out.
Anonymous3307077
children of the whales
Lenlo
Holy crap. Mob Psycho 100 is the best thing since sliced bread. BONES thank you.

And thanks Kaiser!
Amagi
well we have a döner kebab ship at least.
Amagi
I am from Frankfurt, another one of the biggest German cities but there isn't much to see here aside from skyscrapers and banks.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*had **taught
Kaiser-Eoghan
I hah had some notion that the Japanese didn't really know English or it wasn't well thought over there?
Kaiser-Eoghan
Lenlo's taste continues to be impeccably based.
Kaiser-Eoghan
lol I thought coolass47 was covering Kaguya.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Germany, both Koln and Berlin, especially Koln felt like a home to me and felt the less alienating/foreign.
Kaiser-Eoghan
.....probably embarassing but, I think I'd be put off sleeping on the floor in a futon or using one of those weird Japanese toilets.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Truly I am the Kaiser Eoghan.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Beyond that I've been to Belgium, Spain, France, Italy, Northern Ireland and Wales.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I've never been outside of Europe. I didn't have problems getting around Germany though when I went because my then girlfriend was from there and I knew enough to cope on a Holiday.
Amagi
also no matter which country I visited till now people were always friendly
Amagi
Yeah, now thinking about it, I could even find everything in Iran so I guess Japan should work too. Most people knew enough random English or German words to somehow lead you to the place and you want to visit unless it's some really weird relief or a small town that's difficult to reach but tourists usually stick with the big stuff.
SuperMario
... years ago and Japan is pretty safe and the signs are easy to follow in general. Even the locals who don’t speak English they are pretty friendly and help you the best they can. You don’t need to be worry on that front
SuperMario
I did it alone few
Amagi
Not sure how he did it (he went completely alone too) but it seems to be possible somehow. Not sure if I would make it though.
Amagi
Someone I know managed it alone and he isn't even that good in English.
Lenlo
I think I can manage. Lots of English signage in places like the rail systems and such. That plus the small amount I am learning in preparation and how much english they teach them over there, I should be ok
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Do you feel you'd be able to get by in Japan? As far as I know you don't speak any Japanese.
Animosh
Mob was great again too. The adaptation is really knocking it out of the park. And looks like we'll be getting one of my favorite side stories next week.
Animosh
I love how upbeat Slime continues to be. If only all wars were resolved like this. And then he goes on to improve everyone's lives by building homes, infrastructure, and coalitions based on common interests? Rimuru for president!
Anonymous3303364
I retired from the force in middle school enjoying my retirement, I still see the faces of the comrades we lost when we defeated the big bad and saved the world, I haven't seen my cute marketable mascot in 3 years, but I like this new life I'm living, I thought I found peace but the battlefield always calls out to me, why? Because war never changes.
Anonymous3303364
I love this comment since it's more well put on what this dark magical girls show really is:
Vonter
Perhaps in ten years when the next trope comes. I wonder if some will look back to the tropes from now with different eyes. Like they say, you don't know what you have until you lose it.
Vonter
Yeah, maybe I could watch some of that schlock. In a way some of it has become more endearing over time. Since times have changed.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Vampire wars was fantastic though, used shitfuck as a word from what I remember.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Yes! Finally they're saying it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Watching a compiliation of dub cursings for angel cop, not enough F-bombs yet.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I always wish some of these old ovas got to go on for longer, especially AD police and bubblegum crisis. I'd have loved a full gunsmith cats or riding bean show.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have to watch Angel cop some day I really do.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I think vonter, if magical girl ops can't achieve the exploi angle then it has failed all the further. We'll have to see.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: I was disappointed when I saw the more modern anime! Because it didn't have the art I liked in the ovas.
Vonter
I do remember now. Did you watched the Birdy The Mighty OVA (not the series, the OVA). That one I remember liking because it was cheesy, visceral, had IMO better designs for the aliens than the ones in the TV series and I digged the dynamic of the two leads. However it was cut short. Perhaps it was too derivative for the time.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Sometimes I can actually take ridiculousness much better when its a live action exploitation thing if it happens to fail in animated form. That Jeanne d'arc anime and maybe magical girl spec ops would have made hilarious 60s/70s Eurotrash films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
One of the only modern anime to do the exploitation angle right was Freezing.
Vonter
I want to believe there's something like that already out. But I'm blocked. I can only mention that I now want to rewatch some of Devilman Lady. It does have a female lead battling monsters with an 80s sci fi horror vibe, I don't know it reminds me for some reason to movies like Godzilla 1985 or King Kong Lives.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Or go mental.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Thats one I still need to get around to. If I have to have a darker magical thing, it either has to be camp and goofy enough while taking itself dead seriously or keep some of the fun .
Vonter
@Kaiser-Eoghan - If you haven't check a couple of episodes of Lady Devilman. Despite being formulaic, the monsters on that anime are really well made and feel creative, morbid and creepy.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: lol Damn, now I want to see Go Nagai's take of Magical girl ops.
Kaiser-Eoghan
And I love how some old ovas would sometimes take place in America, but in this IDEA of it, getting it wrong.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: I love how they added in those stupid curse words every few minutes aswell, wonderfully incompotent.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Vonter: Mad bull 34 was lovingly perverse , like a Japanese equivalent to those wonderful Italian police things.
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Hello and welcome to the first outright perfect episode of anime of 2019! Mob Psycho 100 knocked it out of the park this week in every respect, so let’s just jump right in! Right off the bat, Bones is out in full force animation wise. Everything about this episode, visually, was fantastic. Even in drab, […]

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Zombieland Saga was a show that came out of the gate guns blazing, no one expected it nor did anyone predict it but it left a strong impression when it first aired it’s starting episodes. Originally considered to be another zombie apocalypse anime, it overthrew expectations by turning out to be a zombie idol anime. […]

Boogiepop wa Warawanai (2019) – 02/03 (Boogiepop Does Not Laugh 2/3)

Welcome to Boogiepop, one of the hallmark franchise in the history of this medium. The Light Novels itself dated back in 1995 and is still considered as one of the earliest Light Novels ever released and is often credited as starter of the Light novem trend in Japan. The anime adaptation in 2000 remains one […]

Zombieland Saga – 10-12[NO ZOMBIE NO IDOL SAGA/A One-of-a-Kind SAGA/Good Morning Again SAGA]

And so Zombieland ends…or more that it just decided to drop off for a bit. The last few episodes decided to focus on Sakura with the first being her overzealous preparation for a big concert and Kotaro’s efforts to just get her to chill out and relax, the second being the return of her memories […]

Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru – 12 [Summer Prank]

Ah, the break is over, the New Year is here and Kaze Fui has returned once more! This week a few more of our boys get qualifying times, Kurahara loves his team and everyone goes camping! Lets dive in! Starting off, I have to make it known how happy I am for our boys in […]

Mob Psycho 100 II – 1 [Ripped Apart ~Someone Is Watching~]

Winter 2019 hype! The new season has begun, First Impressions are going up, and me? I’m writing about the second season of Mob Psycho 100, one of my favorite series of 2016. So everyone, lets dive in! Mob Mob Mob! Right off the bat let me say I loved this premier. It hit a little […]

Seishun Buta Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai no Yume wo Minai – 09-13[Sister Panic/Complex Congratulations/The Kaede Quest/Life is a Never-Ending Dream/The Dawn After an Endless Night]

It’s hard to believe that I so easily forgot that this series was written by the same person who wrote the The Pet Girl of Sakurasou but these last few episodes really gave me a solemn reminder of that. The Sakurasou series had a pendant for serious melodramatic antics and while I did appreciate the […]

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If there is one thing I have lost watching seasonal anime, it is patience. Every week I expect something to happen, some kind of payoff, to make watching that week worth it. Luckily, Planetes as brought that back to me. Its depth of writing, characters, and general structure belay an anime of a different age. […]

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Zombieland Saga Anime Review – 60/100

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Seishun Buta Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai no Yume wo Minai Anime Review – 82/100

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