Posted on 30 June 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Natsuiro Kiseki – 12: I usually use Media Player Classic to watch episodes, but I watched Natsuiro Kiseki’s finale on Windows Media Player (on my crappy laptop I have experienced that it’s the best in terms of smoothness). Unknowingly I had the player settings stand on repeat. So yeah, I got quite a scare when suddenly the episode started looping, ESPECIALLY with this kind of episode. Apart from that, what can I say about it? Wonderful idea for a final episode and a really heart-warming finale. – ** (Excellent)

#2: Hunter X Hunter – 36: Yes, Madhouse: this is how you do action scenes. With lots of dynamic movements instead of frames that look like they have been directly copied and pasted from a manga. This episode did drag on a bit too much, but hey: this definitely is a start. Up next will be the arc that I found to be the single most boring of the 1999 series, so this is really where this show can make the difference. – ** (Excellent)

#3: Nazo no Kanojo X – 12: This episode yet again was chock-full of teenaged hormones, though they were used well. The tension between two lead characters is what makes this show fun, and this episode had more than plenty of that. – *+ (Great)

#4: Kimi to Boku – 25: Kimi to Boku goes with the “random episode”-ending, but it’s a fitting one: it’s about the future of the characters, it had a ton of Chizuru being annoying, and instead of being the most dramatic episode of the season it ended on a mellow, yet charming note. Well done. – *+ (Great)

#5: Jormungand – 12: So much for the interesting trio of last week. As for the other antagonists in this episode: the guy who killed off all of Valmet’s comrades was just another snarking bad guy who kept smiling even though all of his subordinates got killed. I know he’s a killer himself too, but wouldn’t he at least be annoyed or something? I like the guy with the many nicknames, though. That scene where we first see him with his family is exactly the thing that the other villains in this series lacked. Also, who did they get for that one great song that popped up in the middle of the episode? There is no way that that guy is Japanese. – *+ (Great)

#6: Sankarea – 12: Well, that was inconclusive… this episode definitely had its char in nothng happening, but having nothing happen also is a bit of a dwnside for an ending. I’m sure Studio Deen are going to milk this into a second season and all, but still this was a strange way to leave. – *+ (Great)

#7: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 25: Great to see that Poyopoyo seems to continue for another season. This episode perhaps tried a bit too hard with the slapstick, but it still had quite a few inventive jokes. – *+ (Great)

#8: Shirokuma Cafe – 13: Okay, so for episode 13, this series dedicates itself entirely on to Handa and the comedy takes a much less prominent role. I think that that’s one of the main issues with this series: it dabbles tooo long on one particular subject, because Handa already was a main focus of last episode, and this episode only established that he wants to date Sasako, yet can’t muster up the courage. This episode did have its charms with the Tanabata, though. Also, Mr Tortoise’s wish had me in stitches. – * (Good)

#9: Saint Seiya Omega – 13: The fight of this episode was boring in which the main cast had to take down some strange fly guy, but I do like that the creators at least went itno his motivation for being evil (being unhappy with Athena). Oh, and Aria finally did something. – * (Good)

#10: The Legend of Korra – 11 & 12: Ouch. Amon’s background was good and all, but the ending… that was not good. Not only was it a huge Deus ex Machina ending, but it also rendered so much of the earlier episodes useless. I really found the idea to take someone’s bending away forever a great idea and it’s part of what attracted me to this series. But yeah, as soon as Korra lost her bending it became obvious that the creators were trying to look for a way to cancel all of that. And really? By having a bunch of dead people show up from out of nowhere? – – (Disappointing)

Okay, now so to wrap things up:
Number of series consistently covered: 11
Series that made the number one spot in these rankings: Natsuiro Kiseki (4x), Another’s OVA, Kimi to Boku (1x), Legend of Korra (1x), Hunter X Hunter (1x), Nazo no Kanojo (1x), Shirokuma Cafe (1x).
Series with the highest average rankings: Natsuiro Kiseki, followed by Kimi to Boku, Legend of Korra, Nazo no Kanojo and on place 5 there is Shirokuma Cafe.
Series with the lowest average rankings: Saint Seiya Omega, followed by Sankarea and Medaka Box.
Biggest improvement: Hunter X Hunter’s latest episodes. Sankare and Medaka Box also improved.
The Best Week: Week 23; every series delivered there and there were many awesome episodes to be had.
Worst Week: Week 26; endings are hard to do really well.

My plans for the next season.
Overall, I really enjoyed these posts, so next season I’m going to do them as well. There are six series that look interesting enough to weekly blog. The rest of the series will be summarized in these Kaleidoscope posts. Now, there is only one thing: Phi Brain doesn’t deserve an entire post dedicated per week anymore after what it pulled for the past arcs, so that series will too be delegated to the Kaleidoscope serie. So what should I replace it with? I’m currently toying with a few too many ideas, so I need a bit of guidance.

What should I do next season?
  
Posted on 24 June 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Hunter X Hunter – 35: Holy crap! What happened here? Suddenly the fight animation has turned incredible. I was fearing that the creators would put the shading overdose with the Hisoka fight again, like what they’ve been doing many times now when he comes into the spotlight, but the movements were amazingly fluid and dynamic here. – **+ (Excellent+)

#2: Natsuiro Kiseki – 11: Again, this was very impressive. The audition scene in particular showed a completely different side of Yuka, but the rest of the cast also got its share in the spotlight. The rock will probably pull one more nasty trick, which is probably what the final episode will be about and on top of covering the audition, this episode also built up for that wonderfully. – ** (Excellent)

#3: Kimi to Boku – 24: The best romance this season doesn’t come from any romance shows, but instead of shows that happen to have romance in them. Kimi to Boku, I applaud you with such a subtle portrayal of Kaname’s romanc. The implied love triangle with the younger sister was a bit pointless, but Kaname and his romantic interest were really well acted. – ** (Excellent)

#4: Legend of Korra – 10: This episode was meant to show the character development, especially on Korra’s part, as well as starting up the actual climax of this “Book”. The action scenes were still good, even though not among the best, but the plot twist at the end was a big one and I like how far the creators went with that. – ** (Excellent)

#5: Jormungand – 11: The bad guys of this episode were better than usual. Their personalities combined together better than usual, and they were actually built up as a threat, rather than just some more cannon fodder for Koko&co. Valmet’s backstory also helped. – ** (Excellent)

#6: Shirokuma Cafe – 12:: An entire episode dedicated to trolling pandas. Oh dear god, Panda really was more sadistic than usual here to Hand, and yet it again had quite a few hilarious moments, the best probably being the point where they took over the zookeeper’s office. – ** (Excellent)

#7: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 24: Amidst random sketches about passing the time while it rains, this episode stood out because of that giant frog. After nearly two seasons, Poyopoyo can stil manage to find new ways to be adorable. – *+ (Great)

#8: Nazo no Kanojo X – 11: This episode was indeed better than expected considerng the build-up. The creators didn’t go into the corny love triangle route, but instead kept tihngs fresh. I do have a different complaint about this episode, though. Nazo no Kanojo is all about the subtle tease: saying a lot with relatively little fanservice. this episode was all “Screw that! Here are naked girls over and over! Let’s have wacky hijinks ensue when the male lead accidentally sees them!”. – * (Good)

#9: Sankarea – 11: I have no idea what to make of this episode. On one hand it had some really good partsand twists, it used a few anti-climaxes nicely and all. and on the other hand there was the really weird decision of the creators to randomly dress up Rea for no particular reason (not to mention the question how these maids managed to dress up Rea when she was in shackles and all), the incredibly silly tone after all that build-up, the return of the cousin with her really bad dialogue and the uncanny ability of the creators to focus on her boobs and ass whenever she appeared. Sankarea: you have potential. Why do you have to be so goddamn annoying as well? – @#*% (?!?)

#10: Saint Seiya Omega – 12: This was watchable fodder in which Kouga shows yet again that he’s the chosen one, though it was interesting to see some more back-story revealed of what I presume was the first season. In order to put the spotlights on the new cast, the creators had to pull some tricks here and there to get the old cast out of the picture, and yeah, I guess being defeated to the point of being crippled for life is a good option. – * (Good)

#11: Medaka Box – 12: And Medaka Box closes off with a return to the mundane “character of the week” routine while waiting for Medaka to heal and the new bad guys to arrive. It had some merits, like showing what the cast would do when the lead character is absent, but this isn’t really the kind of episode you’d want as a mid-season finale while waiting for that second season. And yeah, this one got a sequel. I didn’t expect it, but it does help, considering how little the first actully got done. – * (Good)

Posted on 16 June 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Shirokuma Cafe – 11: Polar Bear Cafe, you just surpassed yourself. The first half of this episode was just surreal, and pretty much was the funniest thing I’ve seen all season. I couldn’t stop laughing while watching it. – *** (Awesome)

#2: Medaka Box – 11: So yeah, this arc was completely different from the rest of the series, but it worked. It was so over the top, but at the same time it used the development of the first half of the series and I also liked how it toyed with the shounen conventions. I have no idea how this show plans to wrap itself up in just one episode, but still this was Shouji Saeki‘s best work as a director on a full series. I guess it really helped that he was both the director and the main adapter, because as flawed as this series is, it does have one thing: a big picture, and that can’t be said of every incomplete adaptation. – ** (Excellent)

#3: The Legend of Korra – 09: I’m not really fond of how the creators continue with the love triangle and all, but the second half of this episode took some really interesting twists and turns here. I like how there are many different parties who are up against each other here and it makes for a great plot. But what will this show do once everything is over? – ** (Excellent)

#4: Kimi to Boku – 23: This episode was about Mary, and as expected it got a lot of very neat character development in. What I didn’t expect was that the twins also got some unexpected character development; it was subtle, but definitely there. Both worked really well here. – ** (Excellent)

#5: Yondemasuyo, Azazel-san OVA – 03: Azazel-San’s latest OVA came out this week, and this one takes place directly after the TV-series. It’s 30 minutes long, with an OP that hints at many characters who haven’t appeared yet, so the creators are definitely planning more of these OVAs. This episode introduced Lucifer, a very narcissistic Koala, and the direction was in top shape all over this episode, with a creative direction and a lot of hilarious visual jokes. – ** (Excellent)

#6: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 23: This was another one of those episodes in which the creators tried to cram as many different sketches into one episode as possible. people chatted, launched themselves, rode a bus, visited a movie, cleaned for spring, were bothered by lots of rain and… are these episodes really just 2 minutes long? – ** (Excellent)

#7: Sankarea – 00: A ton of shows are on hiatus this week, but Sankarea did have an OVA coming out. And really, I expected to be this pointless OVA of some sort, but it actually had a very clear point to it. It was a tad uneventful and that coincidence at the end was just unnecessary, but as an explanation behind the notebook, and therefore the concept behind the entire series, this was actually a pretty interesting use for a prequel OVA. – *+ (Great)

#8: Danshi Koukousei no Nichijou OVA – 01: So apparently Danshi Koukousei no Nichijou has DVD specials that contain extra sketches. This one was just two minutes long and was mostly just buiding up to one joke. And despite being rather corny, that joke made me laugh. – *+ (Great)

#9: Saint Seiya Omega – 11: At the very least: the stakes are now much higher and more interesting beyond high school tournaments. This episode was not as impressive as the previous two weeks, but still it had its merits. Just don’t let this drag on by again having one episode focus on a different cast member, because that’s getting really formulaic. – * (Good)

#10: Jormungand – 10: Hmm, this may have been me not paying attention, but was it explained how Koko was able t find that Balkan leader so easily? I’m still trying to puzzle out why this series leaves me relatively indifferent, even though its subject matter is pretty interesting. This episode also had interesting dogfights… but it all just goes too easily for out main cast. – * (Good)

#11: Nazo no Kanojo X – 10: This week… was building up to something really corny here. And I am not sure whether it’s smart to end the series with that, people. Childhood crushes are a dead horse by now so it was very tedious to see the writers use that to create a love triangle. It’s a good thing that Tsubaki and his “ex”-crush were well acted so they managed to save this episode with that, but this show will be ending in two weeks. This isn’t the time to introduce cliches. – * (Good)

#12: Kingdom – 02: Dear god, I can’t watch this series anymore. It’s one thing to be dramatic, but this was some of the most overblown melodrama I have seen in years. On top of that the script tends to repeat the obvious over and over. I unfortunately got my hopes up way too high for this one, and it’s definitely the biggest disappointment of 2012 so far. Dropped. – — (Bad)

Posted on 9 June 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: The Legend of Korra – 08: This episode caught me off-guard. Every time I thought “oh, they’re finished now”, it only got even better. This had it all: excellent action, it was full of emotion, it played with Korra’s hypocrisy and touchy politics. The best episode of this series yet, without a doubt. – *** (Awesome)

#2: Nazo no Kanojo X – 09: I already had a suspicion when the episode started up, and a quick look-up on ANN confirmed it: yes, Shigeyasu Yamauchi was behind this episode, and he really succeeded in making an already excellent adaptation even better. This episode was even more expressive than usual, and his camera-angles and different poses that focus on subtle movements really brought the characters to life here. – *** (Awesome)

#3: Saint Seiya Omega – 10: Okay… I was originally intending to drop this series; it still hadn’t caught my attention, but I figured that I might as well give it one more episode. And then this episode proceeded to surpass the entire series in every single way: better acting, better action, better music and better use of it, there is better character-development and the plot got a lot more interesting, not to mention that the drama also finally delivered. A quick look-up revealed that Rie Matsumoto was behind this episode, and it really shows. Keep an eye out for her, because she really is Toei’s latest rising star, and let’s hope that the next episode can keep up with this momentum. – *** (Awesome)

#4: Natsuiro Kiseki – 10: And with this, this series is back to its old level. The rock was at its trollish best again, and the entire episode was just based on a great idea with time travel. This one was all about youth memories, and a really creative way to show more about the cast when they were young. – **+ (Excellent+)

#5: Shirokuma Cafe – 10: A hilarious episode. It pretty much was the best use of Panda in the series so far. He is such a troll, and this episode had a ton of fun with that by having a group date with Handa of all people. Penguin also was priceless in this episode. – ** (Excellent)

#6: Kimi to Boku – 22: Very cute episode, again with great romance. Plus, having a graduation ceremony has been done many times before, but it is a great way for character-development. – ** (Excellent)

#7: Sankarea – 10: This series really is trying to get its basics right: background, background and more background. This is the third episode that just takes one of the members of the cast and devotes the majority of its time to show her background and her issues, this time it was the mother’s turn. And really: this was good. It showed who she is, why she is with that asshole of a father and how she changed over the years. Plus: none of the annoying characters made an appearance! Or at least a conscious one. – ** (Excellent)

#8: Medaka Box – 10: And we’re over nine thousand here with Medaka Box. This episode was not as creative as last week, but the change of tone really is apparent here and I like how the creators pulled all of the plugs, while still remaining consistent in the themes it explores. – *+ (Great)

#9: Jormungand – 09: An episode of contrast. It worked very nicely, with the combination of an escort mission giving a new dynamic to this series, while on the other side the small moments take enough time for the characterization of the main cast. The fanservice was annoying though, and this series chronically ignores to give any sort of interesting background or touches to the villains beyond the basics. – *+ (Great)

#10: Hunter X Hunter – 34: That one scene with the electricity: that’s where the animators finally loosened up a bit, and there were other scenes during Killua’s fight that finally had a direction that didn’t seem like it was pasted from manga-panels. The rest of this episode had plenty of those shots, but it’s definitely good to have a start here. What I also appreciate is that the creators bothered to fully let this arc play out, even though that meant having a few repetitive fights. – *+ (Great)

#11: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 22: This week’s episode was a cute story about a crow. Nothing stand-out hilarious for this series’ standards, but it remained very cute. – *+ (Great)

NB. Yes, Poyopoyo is actually last this week. What that means is that pretty much every series on this list delivered and was really enjoyable to watch, and I have very little to bitch about. That’s the great thing about this season: the huge quantity of series worth watching.

NB2. Overall, I’m really enjoying doing these rankings each week with short summaries. I’ll probably do this next season as well.

Posted on 3 June 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Another – 00: I don’t feel like writing an entire entry about Another’s OVA, but I do want to say: this is how a prequel OVA should be done. If you liked Another’s quiet moments, then this is a great recommendation because it adds a lot to Mei’s character here. The suspense build-up also was really well done, and the shout-out at the end of the episode was a very nice touch as well. Excellent way to close off this series. – **+ (Excellent+)

#2: Medaka Box – 09: Now this is more like it. Finally stuff happens, and I like the new direction. The action scenes finally delivered, and I really like how the different weapons and moves used poked fun at shounen conventions. Will this be enough considering there are only three or four episodes left, though? – ** (Excellent)

#3: Nazo no Kanojo X – 08: Lots of teenaged hormones running rampant this week, but they were done with such restraint that the tension really got addictive. Usually boob touching is completely and utterly shallow and just for the sake of fanservice , but here it played a huge role in pushing the main couple closer to each other. – ** (Excellent)

#4: Jormungand – 08: One of the best Jormungand episodes so far. They came with an interesting character for Koko to face, it used its politics nicely and some more side-characters got fleshed out. Let’s hope that the next episodes will also be like this. – ** (Excellent)

#5: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 21: What’s so amazing about this show is how easily it is to relate to these characters. This episode was a wonderful example of highlighting all sorts of different habits that pet owners have, and I don’t even have pets. – ** (Excellent)

#6: Shirokuma Cafe – 09: The first half of this episode was boring. The problem with Rin Rin is that he’s just an over the top stereotype, and focusing more on his characters just exposes his flaws. The second half though had Penguin and Polar Bear both in their best element. – *+ (Great)

#7: Hunter X Hunter – 33: Getting back to the explanations: so first we have an actual match in which some of the powers are explained. Then we have the aftermath in which Hisoka explains his powers. And now we get even more explanations as Gon and Killua also have to figure out what’s going on. Just weave that into one; it’s not really a major fight that deserves so much airtime. The end of the episode though. That was quite good. I’m still not a fan of how this series prefers shading over actual animation during the really heavy standout parts, but finally Killua showed off something new. – *+ (Great)

#8: Saint Seiya Omega – 09: Things are finally getting excited. The problem with the first episodes was that the fights lacked impact. Here though, they were interesting to watch and exciting as they were intended. The animation still has miles to go before it can reach Heartcatch Precure and Casshern’s levels, though. – *+ (Great)

#9: Sankarea – 09: An episode entirely dedicated to the sister. Okay. Surprisingly, this resulted in all of the annoying characters being completely absent, and resulted in a much more bearable episode. It was a kindof touching episode. On a side-note: Sankarea is stating to turn into a pet, rather than a human being. She needs to do things for herself as well. – *+ (Great)

#10: Natsuiero Kiseki – 09: This is a strange week: the boring series surpass themselves, while the usually strong series have a week off. The problem with this week’s episode of Natsuiro Kiseki was that it was too forced, but in a bad way. Some parts that would be really surprising are just slided off for the sake of convenience. The biggest example was the end of the episode: when a naked girl just randomly appears, it should be a huge shock, but the two girls here seem to have forgotten about that mere seconds afterwards. Not to mention the bad boob jokes. – * (Good)

#11: Kimi to Boku – 21: Hmm, this was the weakest episode of the second season. I’m not really a fan of the “let’s see how much trouble the characters can work themselves into”-storylines, especially when they involve slapstick, and it was too forced. Better luck next time. – (Enjoyable)

Posted on 26 May 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Natsuiro Kiseki – 08: I love travelling series, and this episode captured that perfectly. Trips are fun and all, but getting there is very often underestimated. As much as I like the direction Kimi to Boku turned into, in the end I do like Natsuiro Kiseki better, because it accomplished the same thing, while needing half of that airtime. – **+ (Excellent+)

#2: Kimi to Boku – 20: This time it’s the turn for Shu’s brother. As annoying as he was in the other episode he was featured in, as charming he was here. Seriously, that was some good romance there, especially for a guy with as little airtime as him. – **+ (Excellent+)

#3: The Legend of Korra – 07: By far the lest interesting part of the Legend of Korra is its romance, but that really got a push into the right direction with this episode when everyone finally seems to drop all of the tension. Aside from that, once again the action was great and I indeed saw confirmed that I’ve been suspecting all along now. – ** (Excellent)

#4: Nazo no Kanojo X – 07: The male lead’s big flaw is that he is very unremarkable. There is one point at which he sets himself apart from his counterparts though: the way he reacts to his girlfriend. Add that to a played down performance that isn’t trying too hard, and you’ve got a male romance lead that I really don’t mind watching. Nevertheless though, the female characters in this series remain the better ones. – ** (Excellent)

#5: Shirokuma Cafe – 08: A grizzly bear, a polar bear and a panda go fishing. I never imagined that they’d actually make an anime out of that. That bird in the first half of this episode was also hilarious, not to mention Shirokuma’s past. – ** (Excellent)

#6: Jormungand – 07: Nice episode, especially in terms of the gunfight. Koko’s date was a bit anticlimactic, though, but this show is steadily making its cast more interesting. – *+ (Great)

#7: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 20: The thing with this series is, that the entire cast is just fun to watch. It’s not just Poyopoyo, but the brother and sister tht own him are well acted and just as fun as he is, if not even more. – *+ (Great)

#8: Hunter X Hunter – 32: This is one fights which was done completely different when compared to the 1999 series. Overall, I prefer the waythe 1999 version did it, for one main reason: this episode went overboard with the explanations. It just went on and on with guiding us through every step in the ultimately brief fight. At times it also felt like the characters were talking to the audience, rather than each other. It’s a shame, because with the right execution the creators could really have done some impressive stuff here. Also, I disagree that my arguments can be dismissed because “this is a shounen series”. Genre conventions are guidelines. Be bold! Screw conventions! Break them! Hunter X Hunter is the perfect series to do that with! – * (Good)

#9: Saint Seiya Omega – 08: Okay, so apparently I dropped this show right at the wrong time: stuff actually happened here. I admit that the golden saint is interesting, but this episode did not fix the character issues I have in that they’re just too bland and uninteresting. That gold saint was one of the best characters so far for a reason. – * (Good)

#10: Sankarea – 08: There is one thing I am really struggling with with this series: it has parts that are really good. But it’s completely boring during the rest of its time. Now, will it get better/ Knowing Studio Deen, they will milk this show into a second season, but even thhen this is a manga adaptation where a lot of focus will be on how they handle the ending.This episode was already dragged out, despite the good bits at the end of it. – (Enjoyable)

#11: Medaka Box – 08: You know, it’s nice and all that the genre shift is about to begin now… but this show will be over in four weeks. Yeah, it’s only a 1-cour series. So yeah, in the meantime we have another dull episode about some random police officer who takes het job way too seriously. Also, if she didn’t have another uniform, what happened to the one she was going to make Medaka wear? – (Disappointing)

Posted on 18 May 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Kimi to Boku – 19: Are Japanese girls really so weak that they faint if you so little as even bump on them? I know she was tired and all, but these girls have health issues… Anyway, I digress. An amazing episode with the love triangle finally moving somewhere. Chizuru in particular changed significantly. He’s the type of character who often gets done wrong, with some horrible results. With this though, he really redeemed himself. – *** (Awesome)

#2: The Legend of Korra – 06: This series has also just surpassed itself this week. Really good action scenes, and the creators just keep building further upon Korra’s naivety. I really like how this series is set to subvert a number of often-used fantasy cliches. – **+ (Excellent+)

#3: AKB0048 – 03: I do not have time right now so I’m going to delay deciding whether or not to blog this, and how on earth I’m going to fit this into my schedule, for one more week. But seriously, what the hell did I watch here? Yet again enough proof that the creators know what they’re doing here: this show glorifies idols, but this episode also showed the uglier side of this bizarre premise. Especially Mari Okada was on fire on this episode: this was full of emotion, yet not as extreme as with Black Rock Shooter. – **+ (Excellent+)

#4: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 19: Oh my god, this was one of the best episodes yet. The sketch where Poyopoyo gets caught in quick drying cement was priceless. I was wondering why there were less jokes than usual, but the build-up was totally worth it. – **+ (Excellent+)

#5: Natsuiro Kiseki – 07: I hate the idol business in Japan. So why are the idol themed series so damn good? A thoughtful episode that highlighted the layers of the different characters and how they feel about the rock. – ** (Excellent)

#6: Nazo no Kanojo X – 06: That’s some impressive romantic tension you’ve got there, Nazo na Kanojo X. Nice aversion of the love triangle, and a very good potrayal of Tsubaki’s insecureties that make him less bland as a character. – ** (Excellent)

#7: Shirokuma Cafe – 07: Polar Bear is without a doubt my favorite character of this sereis. His deadpan humour in this episode especially was just hysterical. And that while the premises of each episode remain absolutely corny. – ** (Excellent)

#8: Hunter X Hunter – 31: “Let me drag out this fight by holding long monologues in order to explain you exactly how my powers work, giving you plenty of hints on how to stop me!” – This is exactly why I dislike the shounen genre dammit! The pacing keeps slowing down here! – * (Good)

#9: Jormungand – 06: I’m still missing something with this series. I mean, the backdrop of Africa is good, it’s nice to see the characters getting fleshed out and slowly reveal their pasts and the diplomacy is also nice, but I don’t know. The charcters still feel too one-sided and stereotypical. – * (Good)

#10: Medaka Box – 07: This was Medaka Box’s worst episode so far. Dull and forced fanservice, bland premise about art and a forced way to flesh out that new council member. Also I hate how creators can’t think of any light-hearted way to open a scene, so just go for the “walking into changing”-scene. Why has this turned into a default scene to use? – (Disappointing)

#11: Sankarea – 07: Seriously? An entire episode dedicated to that cousin? With no scene of Rea whatsoever? And it only reaffirms her character as “I like the main character”, with nothing beyond that? Come on, Sankarea, weren’t you supposed to be this romance with creative twists? – (Disappointing)

#12: Saint Seiya Omega – 07: I’m dropping this series. It has consistently ranked last amongst these rankings, and it got me thinking: what did it really offer in the past seven episodes? Nothing stood out, it was just a bunch of random hot blooded fights without much soul to them. There are too many other gret series this season for this. – (Disappointing)

Posted on 12 May 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Natsuiro Kiseki – 06: Brilliant characterization! Developing the same character in two different ways, based on a simple whim. This show just keeps getting better! – *** (Awesome)
#2: AKB0048 – 02: I have been asked very persistently by a certain someone whether or not I’m going to blog this series. I’m going to withhold that answer for next week, though. Why? Because I want to know what happens next. The intro is done, and what now? Will this turn into yet another boring school series like so many series with promising first episodes have done (lookin’ at you, Saint Seiya…), or will it evolve with the promise of these first two episodes? So far it’s good stuff, though. – ** (Excellent)
#3: Nazo no Kanojo X – 05: This episode again contained that mysterious charm that this sereis has with its bizarre fanservice, even though it was a beach episode. It was restrained, and very nicely played with that. Now if only the male lead were a bit less bland. – ** (Excellent)
#4: Jormungand – 05: Interesting back-story arc with the addition of Koko’s brother here. Good to see Jonah’s backstory earlier. – ** (Excellent)
#5: Kimi to Boku – 18: Aw, what a cute little romance. Naturally this only blossomed after one of the two had to move away, so that’s a bummer, though. – *+ (Great)
#6: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 18: This has to be the most tsundere cat I have ever seen. This episode really shined in how it managed to emote the different cats here. – *+ (Great)
#7: Hunter X Hunter – 30: The fight was boring with again unimpressive animation, attack names and weird musical choices. The aftermath however was surprisingly dark, and actually done better than the first season. Also YES! Kurapika’s arc has started! One detail that I think the 1999 series did better there is that we saw things from Kurapica’s perspective there: when Nen was used, we didn’t see anything. – *+ (Great)
#8: Shirokuma Cafe – 06: This episode had too much panda. the charm of this series is that all of the other characters are hilarious too. Although the punchline at the end of the episode was as hilarious as usual. Why the village people of all things? – *+ (Great)
#9: Medaka Box – 06: Well, this episode did stand out by subverting its own cliches a bit, but I don’t know… it still feels so forced for some reason. – * (Good)
#10: The Legend of Korra – 05: So the only way they decided to spice up the tournament arc was with having a very menacing and egotistical end boss and a lot of yelling for romantic reasons. Not the most interesting episode. – * (Good)
#11: Sankarea – 06: Agh, this show is frustrating! On one hand it’s well acted and written. But the attempts at comedy are so cringe-worthy. It’s also that grandfather who tries way too hard at being funny, resulting in especially the first half of this episode to turn into a chore to sit through bad jokes. – (Enjoyable)
#12: Saint Seiya Omega – 06: You know, the more I’m watching this series, the more I’m convinced that it doesn’t really look all that good. You can have a great character-designer, but even those designs look rather ugly if you don’t use it. – (Enjoyable)

Posted on 5 May 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Natsuiro Kiseki – 05: What a completely adorable episode. The characters just continue to grow here. even though there was no stone today, this was one of the best depictions of a cold in a long while. – **+ (Excellent+)
#2: Shirokuma Cafe: I don’t get it. Some of the jokes in this seris are horribly predictable. This episode again had all kinds of animals suggest bizarre dishes around their favorite food, and Shirokuma’s bad puns. And yet it’s hilarious and so refreshing to watch. The punchline to the parfait fair also was delightful. – ** (Excellent)
#3: The Legend of Korra – 04: Cheesy romance aside, this is the first time I’ve been impressed by this series. The creators used Korra’s brashness in an excellent way here in combinatiton with the politics. – ** (Excellent)
#4: Kimi to Boku – 17: This episode played up Chizuru’s annoyance to the max again, but I’m not bothered by that as much as I used to. Again this episode was really charming and simple. – ** (Excellent)
#5: Sankarea – 05: Very torn on this episode. It would have been #1 if it wasn’t for that annoying cousin. Excellent build-up and pay-off, although I do wonder whether turning zombies in assaulters was the right decision. – ** (Excellent)
#6: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 17: I’m still amazed at how short this series is: not including the OP and ending screen, its episodes are only two minutes and ten seconds long. This episode had 6 different sketches in just that time-frame. All of them were fun. – ** (Excellent)
#7: Jormungand – 04: Good episode for Koko as finally her character was a bit more rounded. Also, “I am an American! I have blond hair, I work for the CIA and I am an asshole!” – *+ (Great)
#8: Nazo no Kanojo X – 04: A bit of a step down compared to last weeks, mostly because the saliva is starting to lose its gimmick, but nevertheless that girl whose name I’ve forgotten had some nice moments together with Urabe. – *+ (Great)
#9: Medaka Box – 05: I noticed that Medaka is often able to hold the higher moral ground, solely because she’s so ungodly good at everything. Will this get used later? Also Gainax, there are times where a slideshow is good, but there are also times where a slide-show is just lazy. For a Gainax series I am surprised how actually mediocre the action in this series is. – * (Good)
#10: Hunter X Hunter – 29: Uh, Hunter X Hunter… are you serious in this? Do you really intend to have people call out the names of their attacks, accompanied by huge letters? Is that your idea of how to best represent Nen? – * (Good)
#11: Saint Seiya Omega – 05: Is the entire series going to be about training and people being hot blooded? – (Enjoyable)

Posted on 29 April 2012 with categories: Spring 2012 Kaleidoscope

#1: Nazo na Kanojo X – 03: What sets the soundtrack of this series on top of all of the others is hard to describe, but that one track it has that it always plays at the episode climaxes brings out a ton of emotion. – ** (Excellent)
#2: Natsuiro Kiseki – 04: That rock is very cruel: toying with the wishes of teenaged girls, and giving them a big middle finger when they try to fix it. Nevertheless though, this episode once again had some really good character development. I also really like how well this show uses the fact that some of its characters are athletic, while others aren’t. – ** (Excellent)
#3: Poyopoyo Kansatsu Nikki – 16: I love how the creators are able to take everyday situations, throw a bit of sadism into them, and make them fun. That Civet cat in particularly worked well with that in this episode. – ** (Excellent)
#4: Shirokuma Cafe – 04: You know I could complain about how Panda was annoying again and all. But they actually showed the polar bear driving a car this episode! The drive-through part in particular was awesome. It’s very hard to correctly explain why this series is so good to someone who has never seen it, though. – ** (Excellent)
#5: Kimi to Boku – 17: This episode was about the twins. Quite refreshing to see the blond kid completely gone. Quite heart-warming to see some of the conflicts between them. – *+ (Great)
#6: Jormungand: The crazy obsessive lesbian is a trope that seriously needs to die. What’s wrong with having just a regular lesbian on the cast? I did like the tension that the boy soldier created in this episode, though. – * (Good)
#7: The Legend of Korra – 03: Very good fight scenes, and the real introduction of the resistance holds potential, but the amount of cliches in the first half was a bit annoying, and this show has this “Saturday Morning Cartoon’-feel to it. – * (Good)
#8: Hunter X Hunter – 28: It’s finally time for the introduction of Nen, the single best power system of any shounen out there. And it lacks a bit of subtlety here. The creators just send waves of random CG without much variation to Gon and Killua. At the very least, comparing the old and new version with each other has given me a new appreciation for how well the 1999 version was made, regardless of how accurate it may have been to the manga. – * (Good)
#9: Medaka Box: If a character is good or bad at handwriting: SHOW this. Don’t just have random characters claim this. Don’t tell me that your animators only know how to do flashy action-scenes, Gainax. – (Enjoyable)
#10: Sankarea – 04: Very annoying episode with lots of cliches. Especially that cousin and those classmates are not interesting to watch at all, not to mention that the creators actually went for a “walking into the shower scene”. this episode was saved by Rea’s changes and development.
#11: Saint Seiya Omega – 04: Rather boring training episode with generic RPG element explanation. – (Enjoyable)

Introducing this season’s Kaleidoscope. I like to experiment with these things, as it’s the perfect format to try out different stuff. This time, because there are so many series that stand out, I’m going to do a ranking: from best to worst, the episodes that caught my attention the most each week of all of the series that I’m not fully blogging, followed by a small blurb for each series (blurbs can also just be “unimpressive”, otherwise it would just take up too much time for some shows). This way I can also share my thoughts of Hunter X Hunter, without having to dedicate an entire entry to it (although I will remove it from this list as soon as the Hunter X Hunter fanbase arrives again and starts telling me how I should enjoy my series…).

Every week on Sunday I will post a new entry for this Kaleidoscope, with weeks beginning on Sunday and ending on Saturday this time. I usually try to have weeks start on Monday, but this is much more convenient because nothing airs on Friday and Saturday, allowing me time to catch up (not to mention the ungodly amounts of series that air all at the same time on Sunday, on top of me being very busy on most Sundays with this thing called real life), and I’ll update this entry as the week goes along.

Also, as for the series that didn’t make the cut (meaning the series that I’m not going to watch this season):
Arashi no Yoru ni ultimately isn’t worth it. It’s overacted and I’ve already seen the story before.
Accel World has some potential, but it doesn’t have any interesting characters whatsoever, not to mention that it’s got a pretty dull and annoying male lead.
Tasogare Otome Amnesia has really bad acting. Plus, the girl turns round and the guy immediately goes for her boob. Now that’s bad fanservice that needs to die.
Kuroko no Basuke, I don’t think that it can really improve beyond what it has shown here. It’s still a jump series full of shounen powers, and it will probably follow a very constraining format. It in any case doesn’t live up to the standard that sports series have set in the past.
– I actually enjoyed the first two episodes of Saki. However, that got me thinking: the reason I enjoyed them so much, and why I actually managed to finish the first Saki, is because there were no Mahjong battles. I’m bailing out while I still can, because those mahjong matches in the first season were just an insult.
Shining Hearts needs more ambition. The characterization isn’t good enough to make this a good slice of life series, and for an adventure it just goes nowhere with an entire episode being dedicated to… a nasty storm.
Acchi Kocchi fails for me as a slice of life due to its annoying characters.
Kuromajo-San ga Tooru also lacks ambition and is just too dull.
– And then there are comedies like Gon, Haiyore, Zombie and Jewel Pet, which just aren’t funny enough to warrant a watch.

CHANGE USERNAME
Lenlo
I cant help but feel theres some cultural aspect I am missing to the Rakugo rant scene. Makes me sad.
Lenlo
Rakugo, continues to be great and gets another time skip. Im always surprised by how engrossing it is just listening to these people talk.
Lenlo
Makes me sad, just like Berserk. Got an entire shelf dedicated to it but its just so slow. stupid boat.
Lenlo
Vagabond was phenomenal, but its been on hiatus for years now hasnt it
Kaiser Eoghan
....well without spoiling towards the middle of that rakugo episode and all throughout during that middle part, my opinion on Yotaro's character went far up.
Kaiser Eoghan
Struggling to remember the name of that josei samurai manga from the 90s (or earlier 2000s), had a gender bending theme.
Kaiser Eoghan
I've already read kenshin and vagabond, I loved shigurui death frenzy and sword of the stranger but found samurai champloo uneven. Theres a kagemusha manga but I haven't read it and I've yet to see/read blade of the immortal.
Kaiser Eoghan
At a glance I'll go against the grain and say I think demi-chan is funnier than konosuba, going on one episode of each.
I've been watching a fare share of samurai films in the last two years and lately so I'm open to wathing more anime/reading manga dealing with samurai.
SuperMario
Hand Shakers, how I love to watch it jumping off the cliff. This show contains lines like "I don't understand... even if I did understand... but I don't understand." It isn't a dialogue that we encounter too often I'm sure.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Sounds good to me. With me covering Little Witch Academia, Saga of Tanya the evil and Rakugo this season is well covered.
SuperMario
so I've decided to blog 3-gatsu, Scum's Wish and ACCA this season. A bit worry about the latter as I still don't have much to talk about that. Let's try it and see what happens; I say
SuperMario
Okay, I'm not hot on Onihei this week, as if the main theme about these two episodes were "people can be corrupted" then I'm not buying it. ACCA, on the other hand, was still very solid of building up the world and its big events to come.
AidanAK47
I have played all the big roguelikes and found they have the same problem. I argee on procedural generation. Even if the map is different every time you are essentailly going through the same rooms and doing the same things.
Masky
Though to be honest, I don't like procedural(or designed room and then game connects them randomly) games much. I much enjoy hand designed dungeons since I rarely play games through more than once anyway so roguelike's appeal of "Every time you play it through its different!" doesn't appeal to me much and hand designed dungeons are much more memorable
Masky
Can't really comment further on that since I don't know which roguelikes you have played, and neither I have played gungeon so I don't know if its badly designed to the point you can't do anything if rng says so. Though I guess there is nothing wrong about liking luck based games, if roguelike in question is truly unbeatable if rng says so, well, its really badly designed one if you ask me.
AidanAK47
Take my last run. Made it up to the fourth floor. Got plenty of guns but none were really useful. Even then ran out of ammo for all of them and the game was cheap about giving out ammo. Plenty of money but shops with nothing worth buying. Over 5 heart containers but no goddamn health. Died on the boss because I rolled out of a bullet into another bullet. Pretty much unavoidable.
AidanAK47
@Masky, that's the theory but in pretty much every roguelike I played its not the case. If the RNG decides you are going to have a bad time then you are going to have a bad time. Skill can only bring you so far. I have played this game for 7 hours and I know I could have finished it in 2. Only thing stopping me is a dice roll.
Masky
Like, the thing with roguelikes is that they can get easier/harder depending on luck, but well done one should be completable even without any upgrades at all if you are skilled enough.
Masky
Thats not the really case with roguelikes though, unless game design is bad and includes insta kill traps and such that are unavoidable if you are unlucky
AidanAK47
I hate roguelikes. Been playing enter the Gungeon and I just lost all patience with it. Getting real tired of my victory being decided by a RNG. It never feels satisfying to finish a roguelike because I know my victory was determined by pure luck.
AidanAK47
So we got to rely on fansubs for it when it's airing.
AidanAK47
@Mario, Nope. I think because netflix only puts up full seasons they are only planning to put it up when it's finished airing. Or when it's dubbed.
SuperMario
But how does the Netflix thing work? So of I have a Netflix account I can watch the show weekly?
SuperMario
@Aidan: that's a dumb way to do things really because unless you watch the show weekly, everyone gonna forget that it even exist. Just look at Re-Life last year
Lenlo
thought*. Words are hard.

Eventually found the actual first ep though and enjoyed it.
Lenlo
Was funny. I tried to find the first Ep for Little Witch, found original short made afew years ago, watched it and though "This is very similar to the original... Whats new".
AidanAK47
Little witch is one of the best shows this season and yet I can't get subtitles because Netflix doesn't release shows weekly. Motherf*cker.
Lenlo
Ore Monogatari I enjoyed. It was a nice romance that actually explored what happens after the confession. Also the 2 leads are just precious.
Lenlo
Alright but unmemorable seems like a good summation.
SuperMario
@Lenlo: one good thing about Seiren is if you don't like this romance, the whole thing gonna reset after episode 4 so there's a chance that you might end up like it. Agreed that the comedy wasn't very good. Alright but unmemorable
SuperMario
@Topgavin: I watched like first 3 episodes and stopped because I didn't have much time there, but I enjoyed what I saw. A well-written and endearing show in my book
Topgavin
Has anyone here watched Ore Monogatari before? Because in the 4 years I've watched anime, I've never heard of it (I guess it did come out 2 years ago) and yet it's turning out to be one of my favorite shows. Always great going into a show expecting nothing and getting pleasantly surprised.
AidanAK47
Only one more impression to go. Should have it up tomorrow.
Lenlo
Im really not feeling Seiren. Its "comedy" isnt for me and I just dont find it very enjoyable to watch so far. Im curious if it gets any better but 2 episodes in it just isnt that good.
HelghastKillzone
That ending scene is an entire side-story compressed into that. Don't expect anymore of it from here on out as the it sticks to ruthless military/fantasy pretty well.
LookingForKeys
@Topgavin I think it was good, making it the second episode. That way the first set up the world the story will be in, and showed how much of a monster the "little girl" really is right at the end, and then made ep.2 the explanation. Nothing against Tanya trying to rip "God" a new one.
That after-credits scene, though...
SuperMario
Hmm, as much as I like Seiren's omnibus format, it doesn't turn out really hot this second episode. Demi-chan, on the other hand, still maintains its endearing tone. Might blogging Demi-chan instead
Topgavin
Yeah, that second episode was much better than the first. Dunno why they didn't start with that to be honest, waste of an opportunity for a good hook episode. The voice for the main girl still sounds weird to me though; I get it's supposed to sound weird because it symbolizes 'her' being out of place and her personality and body being a mismatch, but it'll certainly take some getting used to.
AidanAK47
Youjo Senki, now we are talking. Like Helghast said, Did the god scene way better than the LN and manga. Made it less comedic and more intimidating.
Lenlo
Oh man that Rakugo intro. Not sure what to think, but first time seeing it I liked it
Kaiser Eoghan
I sort of like good will hunting because I kind of saw a bit of myself in Damon's character when I watched it ages ago.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Remaking psycho and ruining the shower scene, for shame van sant, for shame.
Kaiser Eoghan
Its easy to ripoff some obscure thing though and get away with it. The dogtooth director essentially stole an old Mexican film to make that.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: yeah, that following some guys from behind like they were on a RPG games, which I think actually fit with the tones of Elephant. I have such mixed feeling with Gus van Sant too. Don't really think he's a great director.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Although Istvan Szabo is probably a little more well known for that Mephisto film that updates the Faust story. Zoltan Fabri's the fifth seal is a very thought provoking war movie.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I remember seeing a film documentary that featured Gus van sant in one section, they showed clips of tarrs films, Sant ripped of the cinematography and stole the style from some British short film to make Elephant.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: agree on the other Hungarian filmmakers, I don't know much about them either.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Scorsese's Silence was a big comeback. I really really emotionally connect with spiritual crisis stories.
SuperMario
@kaiser: yep, definitely check wreckmeister down. Althought I admit that watching his 2-hour plus films will feel like 5-hour anyways
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I'm more tolerant of darker teenage/coming of age films/stories. Les Demons was a big surprise.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Though its kind of frustrating, I do think Tarr probably takes attention away from other hungarian filmakers because no-body knows who the hell the others are.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Man, wreckmeister was so visually arresting I started getting dreams from it.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I would consider Tarr to be kind of a poor mans Janco, Angelopolus and Tarkvosky rolled into one. I don't entirely "get" wreckmeister and man from London but they are great atmospheric mood piece experiences.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I had been wanting to watch Belar Tarr's Turin Horse and Werckmeister Harmonies for so long now. Well, Fat Girl is shocking haha, but I'm normally drawn into those kind of films anyway.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: Margaret took like 5,6 years to release because he couldn't cut it down in the way he wanted. The final cut if I remembered correctly was edited by Martin Scorsese
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Only a HDcam for moonlight now.
Kaiser Eoghan
I looks like my lineup is witch academia, rakugo and youjo senki, well the most latter one until I get bored.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I sense a directors cut for manchester, it feels like it need another 30 minutes.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: right up my valley. Watch Kenneth Lonergan's previous works Magaret and You Can Count on Me. Magaret is very messy but have a raw dialogue and interactions as well
SuperMario
Now the first episodes are over, I will keep on covering 3-gatsu, as for the other twos atm I have 3 options: 1) full romance/anti-romance high school Seiren/Scum's Wish. 2) slice-of-life moe monster girls Demi-chan/Maid Dragon and 3) Mature,dark Onihen/Acca (which although I like them I don't have much to talk about).If you guys have any preference on which shows you like covered then let me know
Kaiser Eoghan
@Helghast: At this point I'm watching youjo senki as an entertaining guilty pleasure.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Too many reboots upcoming, will wait for the dvds instead. I want to explore more of manchester by the sea's director's work. I also want to finally get more into Bela Tarr's stuff.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I was rather shocked by A Ma souer/fat girls final act. Scenes with the Italian in the bedroom were initially creepy.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: it's a nice review Kaiser, a bit jealous with you that you've seen those 3 films which are touted as the best films of 2016. Also Fat Girl, haha, I love that movie.
Kaiser Eoghan
Poor yotaro =< you have so much stuff going down on you =<
HelghastKillzone
Youjo Senki episode was so good today. That revamped scene with God just fitted so right.
AidanAK47
A official release of that game in the west is apparently coming but it's been a few years and not much news about it.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: Ah yes that was the one.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, Had to think for a moment on that one but I think I was talking about this. https://vndb.org/v3144
Kaiser Eoghan
Now I'd hardly consider myself a studio trigger fan, but I watched the first witch academia episode there, it was actually kind of fun, got the same reaction from me as flipflappers did, that magical, special feeling.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I also, of interest reviewed Kenneth Lonegrans new film: http://letterboxd.com/shao_liu_ringon/film/manchester-by-the-sea/
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Moonlight got some feels out of me though it could of been more, it ends abruptly and with 20 extra minutes they could have spent a bit more time on each section of his life.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I checked out lala land, ending was very well executed, one of three scenes in the film that were impressive visually. The whole thing looked pretty and Gosling and Stone had some decent chemistry. Although it didn't resonate emotionally as strongly as the musicals of Jacques Demi did.
Kaiser Eoghan
MOM I want aiyoku no eustia and I want it now.
Kaiser Eoghan
I've never heard of himawari or tokyo babel. The hellsing comparison at least interests me in dies irae. What was the name of that visual novel again that was coming out soon, Aidan you described it as "And Kaiser would love it because its supposed to be really fucked up".
Kaiser Eoghan
I vaguely remember the anime for 11 eyes, it was very forgettable, even the voice acting was poor, hated the childhood friends and the pacing was poor, those black knight things were kind of interesting though.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: You'll have to add me onto the list of those unsatisfied with the ever 17 writer, I read one of those games and felt it was a bunch of interesting bait that never paid off.
AidanAK47
Anyway I plan on doing a review of 11eyes here when I finish it.
AidanAK47
Can't say I was a fan of Ever17. That was a really good twist but when it came to explaining it their was a lot of contrived development. Generally not a fan of the writer. Looseboy, Ryukishi, Gen and Nasu are more my kinda thing
AidanAK47
@Anon, it is nice that so many VNs are on steam but I wish they wouldn't be stupid with the whole no adult content thing. Not so much for myself but to prevent idiots from writing negitives reviews because the game doesn't have sex. VNs can grip you in a way anime simply can't and while they require pathence and time those can be some pretty powerful stories.
Anonymous678956
@Aidan, I am so happy steam's so VN-friendly now. I think it's a very good type of media. Like anime, it has nice visuals, music and some movement but also the inner monologue and text amount of books. It's the perfect combination. Plus, the routes, which are often puzzle pieces and PoVs you have to go through to understand the whole story. True routes like the one of Ever17 blew my mind.
AidanAK47
Hopefully the two VNs I bought of steam turn out better. Tokyo Babel is supposed to be alright and I heard really good things about Himawari.
AidanAK47
I am about a third of the way through the game and really not much of worth has happened. The concept is interesting but the execution is sorely lacking.
AidanAK47
I went in expecting it to be a mixed bag and it's pretty below my expectations. It's just not really well written and the protagonist is a moron. THere isn't really routes and instead you are pretty much stuck with his childhood friend as the main love interest. Problem with that is her character begins and ends with loving the main.
Anonymous675376
@Aidan, damn. 11Eyes is on my reading list as well. Although I almost expected it to not be as good as I thought it'd be (back then). Guess I would have enjoyed it if I was able to read it while the (shitty) adaption aired, maybe I have seen/read too many series by now. Guess I'll still give it a try some day though.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I haven't heard the OST or watched the intro video. I only know it be reputation and have decided to walk into it as blind as I can. Still slightly worried as I was somewhat looking forward to reading 11Eyes for a couple of years and now that I am reading it it's well...not good.
Anonymous675376
@Aidan, same here. I was waiting years for this, since I saw the intro video for the first time. Also, that OST!
HelghastKillzone
Youjo Senki is already leagues better than Izetta. It's going to be top anime of forever and ever. (maybe not)
AidanAK47
And finally Dies Irae is funded. May actually be able to play and finish the game before the anime airs. If the hype is real behind this baby it could be a new personal favorite Visual Novel of mine. Already looking promising with it being like a cross between Hellsing and Fate/Stay Night. Two things I most certainly like.
Lenlo
@Masky, in regards to style over substance thats where im at with Gurrne Lagann.
Topgavin
Yeah, I'll probably watch the next episode to see whether it can redeem itself. Hopefully it can but considering 1st episodes usually get a lot of budget, there's some severe doubt in there.
AidanAK47
I actually argee with character designs and voices are bad in regards to female characters. Still the next episode might change your mind if we get more into the main characters head.
Anonymous671470
It's boring
Topgavin
Also, it seems I disagree with a lot of people in thinking Youjo Senki will be a massive trainwreck. The character designs are awful, the voice acting is mismatched but most of all the premise just seems so very dumb. If I wanted to watch a badass kill people I'd go watch Hellsing or Drifters, because at least those don't have some op, disproportionate loli as the mc.
AidanAK47
Gets even more complicated when you account for Satire and Parody. You could equally argue all examples listed as being as such.
AidanAK47
Little Witch Academia is a decontruction of Harry Potter....I don't believe that but honestly if I tried I could put some reasoning behind that statement.
Topgavin
In the end, it always comes down to opinion (as with every discussion about anime, for some reason). You could spin any and every series as a "deconstruction", which is why people shy away from using the word. You could argue NGE, Madoka and Re:Zero are all deconstructions yet also argue Gundam, Precure and SAO are depending on what points you weigh more importantly.
Masky
Like, if deconstruction is supposed to be just "break the elements and then play story how it would realistically go down" well I haven't watched NGE, but as far as I know it does have stuff that isn't typical to mecha genre besides the "It would fuck up kids" thing plus "realistically how it would play out" is pretty subjective thing. I mean, its mainly about how cynical bastard the writer is :P
Masky
Like I said, I don't fully agree with it because I find video's speaker's attitude annoying, but I found it semi convincing. Main thing I don't find convincing about it is that I don't think its hard to turn video's own arguments agaisnt it and say that by its own logic NGE isn't deconstruction either, like Aidan just said earlier
Masky
And I don't really have energy for checking out the "correct" one. If there even is one. Anyway, the hipster video I was talking about was titled "What Actually Is A Deconstruction?" if you want to check it out.
Masky
Hmm, well, it does depend on definition you use. Like if you use "realistic" thing, well, Magical Girl shows don't usually have "You turn into monsters" thing going on and reason why NGE's pilots go crazy is from dangerous situations rather than evas making them do so. But honestly, I don't really have strong opinion on matter since word seems to be one of those with several different meaning
SuperMario
for me Madoka IS a deconstruction of Magical girl, and yeah like what Aidan said
SuperMario
I think part of Utena is a deconstruction of "prince riding horse and save the girl" because that notion is just a foundation for Utena to become a prince herself and save other girl. That's breaking it apart and resemble it again in its own way. Don't have to be dark/ don't have to be real either
AidanAK47
@Masky, That's just debating semantics. Besides that difinition would pretty much mean that Neon Genesis Evangelion isn't a decontruction either. Madoka isn't a decontruction because it's dark. It's more in its aspects of criticising why a girl should throw her ordinary life away for something as dangerous as being a magical girl. It does take plenty of the typical tropes and turn them on its head
SuperMario
@Masky: Genre deconstruction is such a tricky word that I normally try to avoid using because there's really no set characteristic about the term and different people have different opinions about what constitute "deconstruction". For me, I disagree that deconstruction have to be dark and real, hmm can't say it well but I will give you an example:
Masky
But yeah, I guess I could try to find the video if you guys are interested, though like I said, I got hipsterish feel from the video and felt rather annoyed through it even though I did get what the point was and found it sort of convincing besides my annoyance
Masky
(not that liking NGE is hipsterish, its just that I find NGE to be more style than substance sort of series <_< Anyway, guy didn't dislike madoka or anything, he just seemed to dislike people using word deconstruction wrong in his opinion)
Masky
(especially with how much they seemed to praise Neon Genesis Evangelion)
Masky
I mean, I think the guy was being somewhat hipsterish, but its true the being darker take on genre isn't same as deconstructing the genre
Masky
@AidanAK47: Some other guy on youtube did video that had actually pretty good point about how Madoka isn't really deconstruction, if you go by definition of "Break it down to parts and then play them straight to show how horrifying it would be in real life"
Anonymous670441
Gente - Ristorante no Hitobito
Kaiser Eoghan
If anything its the hate I have for certain characters that makes it more effective.
Kaiser Eoghan
The obsessional level of attachment is just uncomfortable to me, I don't want to get THAT attached to a non-real character.
Kaiser Eoghan
Its literally just a case of "Okay lets look at this picture of this character, she looks interesting, no feelings or expression from me, apply this fetish, fap, get release, go home. "
Kaiser Eoghan
Or drooling/dribbling/heavy breathing/grinning over the characters. I abhor alot of the anime girls I find attractive or am indifferent, even when looking at ecchi/hentai drawings I'm straight and clinical with it.
Kaiser Eoghan
I mean to each their own. But I really hate the level of emotion/devotion to moe/finding the characters attractive. Such as celebrating their birthdays, going on about how cute/hot they are, how important it is that they're virgins. Or not being being self-aware of how irritating the characters are.
Lenlo
Anime hipster is pretty accurate. His general treatment of the current state of anime is annoying, as is his obsession with moe. Maybe its cause I cant stand moe most of the time, but it bugs me.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Lenlo: Essentially my brothers view on digibro.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Aidan: I don't usually feel the need to correct errors in your reviews as the errors are generally un-important, but I think you meant to say apprentices rather than appearences in the Rakugo review, just bringing that up as it felt like kind of a throw off.
AidanAK47
Which is kinda like saying Madoka wasn't a magical girl deconstruction because Sailor Moon and Nanoha had dark elements too.
AidanAK47
Went and read the reddit comments on it and seems I was right on the money.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, He's basically a anime hipster. For example, I saw a thumbnail of his which had Saitama on it and below it "Is There Meaning In "Subverting" Shounen Tropes?" and I thought "Okay, he's going to go on about how OPM isn't subversive and then list a bunch of arbitrary examples in an attempt to redefine what is actually subversive"
Lenlo
I have lots of issues with Digibro. Dude has some good points, but other very horrible ones. Some issues he feels strongly about and gets kinda biased on imo.
Anonymous669202
acca looks visually interesting, and I personally really dig this kind of show, but it seems that it's definitely not for everyone
AidanAK47
Time to live up to my word. Four posts incoming.
AidanAK47
Man, Little witch Academia was so good. I disagree with the whole Digibro thing about being able to recognise a great show in it's first episode but watching this makes me think that this really is going to be something special.
AidanAK47
Alright, gonna put in effort today and have 3 or 4 first impressions posts done. That should knock out near half the season.
Kaiser Eoghan
Had a flip through handshakers. Garish is the word I'd use to describe it visually, it takes you out of the show.
Topgavin
ASuperMario From the first minute I can already tell it's by the same people that made K. Those colour filters and the extremely jarring/obvious city CGI is unmistakable.
SuperMario
Hand Shakers, literally makes my hands shaking. It's an abosolute mess. Highly recommended to check it out because it's so terrible it's great to watch
Vonter212
Yeah, and it's also a literal woman in refrigerator plot device, since that the thing that pushes the story forward.
Masky
I'd say that having to hide your sister's body in fridge would count as daaaaaaark and edgy, but when the body is wearing only underwear, and for some reason main character put metal things in fridge to keep body standing(I guess to not knock fridge open from inside?) I think it goes to "exploitation" you are talking about
Vonter212
@Masky - Did someone said doing dark things for drama? That's the bread and butter to get despair. Unless it's for the sake of perversion. Then it's just exploitation.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Masky: His other works dead tube and scumbag go further in the unhinged regard.
Masky
*relies on easy "let's do [x dark thing] for drama!" thing
Masky
Geez, Mayonaka no X Giten is fricking disturbing/disgusting ._. I'm pretty sure that writing relies on e, but I can't help but think mangaka is trying to make corpses sexy.
SuperMario
I found Onihei to be quite good, actually one of the most solid new episode I watched this new season. Guys, check them out
Vonter
I just hope it doesn't fall into the same misstep Kabaneri or Inuyasha or Bleach fall by making a villain so over the top that it crossed the line of not having a satisfying downfall.
Anonymous657941
@Vonter I think they just moved on. I lost interest rather quickly and I guess even the fans did that at some point, like with some other long-running series. There is much more new and more direct "fujo" stuff out there, many of them probably switched. Don't know what happens in the manga but maybe the story got worse or contained things some people didn't like.
Vonter
January will be loli dictator month (for me) :p. World Conquest Zvezda Plot, Youjo Senki: Saga of Tanya the Evil (new), Seraph of the End. For some reason I stumble into three curious series with little power hungry girls. If I can ask, why did Owari Seraph's hype died, I remember back it was mentioned more often. It still has the fujoshi fanart but still, I don't see people bringing it up.
SuperMario
@CATski: well, if you didn't like its first 3 episodes I dont think the rest gonna change your mind. Have you finished Erased then? How did you like it?
SuperMario
But I understand it's difficult to speak in front of camera, get some time to get used to it
SuperMario
@kaiser: I won't commend on poem as I'm terrible at it myself but younneed to work more on presentation Kaiser. Small little things like looking directly at the camera or say "thanks for listening" in the end can connect you to the audience better
Anonymous657071
Ok. I'll give the thing another chance. *clicks torrent* XD. CATski.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Topgavin: You might like centaur no nanami if you like demi-chan.
Kaiser Eoghan
Damn...repeated myself =<
Kaiser Eoghan
There are these things called slam sessions done in bars where people get up and read out stuff in front of a crowd and read stuff out. Actually watching rakugo made me think about practicing for that kind of thing.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: the video I did was of me reading out a short piece of writing I did, a poem. lol I uploaded it to the wrong youtube account too I just realized =P
[link src="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ypBZ2hBDBYs&t=11s
I"] was recording this from my mothers laptops inbuilt cam while reading off my desktop.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: I think it's a good idea for you to try out reviewing movies/stuffs in youtube channel. I'll be very interesting to listen to them
Total users: 30

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