Posted on 1 September 2006 with categories: Anime Reviews, The Animatrix



The Animatrix is a collection of nine short films, all around ten minutes in length. Kid’s Story, Matriculated, World Record, Detective’s Story, Final Flight of the Osiris, Program, Beyond, The Second Renaissance Part I and The Second Renaissance Part II. Each of these films gives an attempt to cover one part of The Matrix, a movie trilogy made a couple of years ago. The remarkable thing about this anime is the fact that both eastern as western producers and directors worked on it. If you haven’t seen the matrix yet, the story basically revolves around the future, in which machines have taken over the world. The sunlight has been blocked and the machines noticed that human bio-energy was an extremely useful source of energy. The machines then put humans in containers, while their minds are permanently captured in The Matrix, or a huge virtual world. There’s no way to tell that this world isn’t real. The Matrix stimulates each of the senses. Every human locked up just believes that that he’s living his daily life in a world similar to ours.

The Matrix itself was really though-provoking, and it’s unsurprising that most of the nine-shorts are so as well. They bring up interesting questions. Also, when you look at the graphical department, The Animatrix excels. Each of the different shorts offers a different art, background and animation style. And each of these styles, ranging from CGI to extremely messy and from black and white graphics to extremely smooth ones, works out great. A lot of budget went into the art and animation, and this clearly is visible, with some great effects.

About the different shorts. The thing is that there are some very good ones, but also some very bad ones. The best of the bunch is arguably The Second Renaissance. It features an extremely interesting, though very shocking explanation about how The Matrix originated. Beyond and World Record also are definitely worth the watch. Beyond features a huge amount of style and symbolism, with an interesting story as well. World Record is extremely intense, with a very interesting main character whose body and soul get the shock of their lives.

Then we’ve also got some slightly interesting shorts. Both Program and Kid’s Story provide some interesting issues with really make you think. They also have some interesting art styles (Program goes back to the old ninja-movies, but with fluid animation while Kid’s Story features extremely messy character art with beautiful background art). While they are interesting, and a good watch, they weren’t really as good as the three mentioned above.

And then we have the rather bad ones. Detective’s story leaves things rather unexplained and moves a bit too fast. While its film noir style was interesting, the negative parts bothered me a bit too much. Matriculated dragged on. Its art was psychedelic, though it took way too long. And the semi-3D art wasn’t really appealing for the eyes as well. The worst of the shorts was Final Flight of the Osiris. While it did provide realistic 3D-characters, it just consisted of people fighting and guns shooting without a purpose. Its failed attempts at drama by providing love interest also totally backfired.

Overall, The Animatrix has its ups and downs. Still, I’m really recommending it if you’ve seen the original movie. Because oft he different styles used, there’ll definitely be a movie which appeals to you.

Posted on with categories: The Animatrix



Okay. That was amazing.

The Second Renaissance Part II has definitely been the best of the nine shorts of The Animatrix. I think this is because of its highly disturbing material. In the previous part, we saw the humans abusing the machines, now we see the machines, taking everything away from the humans, killing most of them off and placing the rest into cocoon-like containers, in order to get their energy. But I never could have imagined that it was this gruesome and intimidating…

We continue where we left off. The robots began to wage war on humans, taking over human territories. Then, the humans came with their most desperate plan yet: sealing off the sky. They used a huge amount of planes, disposing huge amounts of a strange gas into the atmosphere, closing off the earth from all sunlight, the machines’ main source of power. Afterwards, the humans planned to wage one huge war against the weakened machine.

Still, they weren’t weakened enough. What follows is a number of horribly disturbing scenes, in which the machines gradually kill off human soldiers in some rather disturbing ways. Humans didn’t stand a chance. Hospitals became overly crowded. The machines seemed to have studied the humans bodies. After they had won the war, they started experimenting with the surviving humans in order to use the power from the human body. The final cities of the humans were destroyed, and each human was converted into The Matrix.

This short indeed was as awesome as it’s rumoured to be. It’s really been a while since I saw such huge shocking images in anime. Heck, even in regular movies and television. And just when I thought that Beyond was chockfull of symbols. As this is a documentary, the screen is so full of all kinds of references, symbols, analogies, et cetera. Awesomeness.

Posted on 31 August 2006 with categories: The Animatrix



Very interesting, a documentary. It’s the first time the art style isn’t easy to define. It’s a mix of CGI frames with rather common character designs. Most of the time we see robots doing their thing, and we don’t really see that many humans.

In any case, this documentary explains how The Matrix originated, why the robots took over control and more background information behind The Matrix. It’s a rather gruesome tale, which makes clear that humanity indeed got what it deserved. This film has been split in two, so the last remaining one will end this story.

In the beginning, humans constructed robots, and the robots fully obeyed the humans. The robot design was rather unrealistic, but it does bring over the point. The robots possessed AI, and they were treated rather badly. Still, entire armies of robots kept working for the humans, doing all of the hard, harsh and dirty jobs.

Then, one robot stood up against its master, and killed him and his entire family. Because of this, humans got scared, and tried to dispose of the robots. What followed was a huge war in which the robots were shamelessly killed off in huge masses. People became to hate the machines. With passion. What follows is a couple of scenes showing the graveyards for these robots. It’s not funny when you realize how many of these were dumped. Entire ocean floors were filled with their corpses.

The surviving machines fled, in order to start a nation of their own, somewhere in Arabia. They called their nation “Zero-One”, or 01. They began to live a life of their own, improving their own AI and equipment. They then attempted to coexist with humans, and participate in the world economy. However.

The leaders of the humans, with their power degrading, didn’t feel anything for cooperation with the robots, who still had good intentions at that time. The robots, attempting to be recognized were killed off. What happens afterwards, we learn in the second part of The Second Renaissance.

Yet again, we’ve got lots of symbolism in this movie. The robots have been given a uniform and human-like design, like in most ancient robot movies. It’s not really realistic when you look at today’s huge diversity of machines. But by giving these robots human characteristics, this film does manage to give them a uniformity. Because of this, things don’t get unnecessarily complicated. And it also provokes some sympathy for these robots, like Matriculated tried to do. I’d say that The Second Renaissance managed to do this better than Matriculated.

Huge exterminations, like shown here, have occurred more often in the history of humanity, at times, even more extreme than this one. Most mass murderers never really got their equal payback (Incans vs. Spain, anyone?). This time, however, payback in the most extreme form arrives. Still, the fact does remain that people uninvolved got their payback as well. I guess that’s inevitable.

The question remains whether what the robots did was the right thing. After all, they were heavily abused, and revenge is sweet. Apparently, even for robots. Still, both the humans and the robots were wrong in this case. The humans for abusing the robots, and the robots for going through the extreme measures of locking the humans up. What happened to love and peace, everyone?

Posted on 30 August 2006 with categories: The Animatrix



The best art style so far: Studio 4C style! When you combine this with 3D and a big budget, it works out great. Beyond really is a feast for the eyes. Most companies need to understand that there’s more than flashy graphics, 3D, lots of realism and lots of CGI in order to make great graphics. You need to add something special for that. Good Witch of the West understood this, Noein understood this and now Beyond also understands this.

The story this time is about a glitch in the matrix. Somewhere, in an old abandoned house, the laws of physics have been rather messed up. A group of kids and one teenager have discovered this, and are having the most fun they’ve ever had in their lives, playing with these laws. Unfortunately, the men in suits have tracked down this error. They rush into the site with a huge truck, close off the area, take the kids away and repair the error. The children return afterwards, but they find that their playground has been destroyed.

Lots of symbolism in this movie. Take for example, the kid’s playground which gets destroyed. That’s happening at more places in the world. At some places, children can have so much fun playing with each other, while adults can’t see this, and plan to use the playground to build, like, an office. But not only that, you can also link this to animals. At the end of the movie, you see rats, who’ve been living inside the haunted house, fleeing from the men in suits. At the moment, things like these still are a major news item with the rarer animals, like tigers and rhinos.

I also found it interesting that we’ve got a bunch of kids who know about the glitch, and they decide to tell our main character, a teenager, about this. In most stories like these, it’s something that the children only know about. It’s interesting to see someone have fun with children 8 years younger than her, like it’s nothing. Talk about symbolism.

Overall, along with World Record, this has been the best story so far. World record had its very intense plot and very interesting main character while Beyond has its incredibly imaginative visuals and deep symbolism. All that’s left now is The Second Renaissance, which is rumoured to be the best of the bunch (I’ve indeed been saving that one for last, in order to save the best for last. ^^)

Posted on 28 August 2006 with categories: The Animatrix



Program was very interesting. The art style this time resembles that of old japanese samurai-anime. If you combine this with the extremely fluent animation and choreography, the result turns out interesting.

We’ve got a woman, inside a mini-matrix. Another guy comes up, and challenges her for a spar. He then makes a confession to her, while he has blocked the signal so nobody can hear him. He plans to go back to the matrix. The woman doesn’t agree. She can’t turn back from the truth. The two make a small chase, after which the woman kills the guy. In the end, it appeared to be a test for her, to see whether she’d react in the right way. The woman isn’t really happy with it.

The interesting point of this film is the emotional effect the matrix can have on a person. The guy appeared to be a simulation, but when you’re in the matrix, or mini-matrix in this case, you won’t notice. A program was created so, that it would look like the guy she knew in every single way. If that’s the case, how ever can you recognize whether that guy is a fake? In normal anime, people often recognize this because they feel something different, or that their heart knows that they’re being deceived. But the fact remains that the matrix can create these feelings.

Program also had a few claustrophobic moments. The program tells the woman that he’s blocked the signal. When she starts screaming for help, nobody reacts because of this. It must be quite a scary feeling, when you always know that you can escape a “dream”-world because of your comrades. I think that that’s a reason for people to be calm in situations like these. It must be a huge shock to find out that you don’t have a means of returning to the real world. Especially if someone’s about to kill you.

Overall, it isn’t the best. It has yet to reach the brilliance of World Record. Still, it was an interesting watch. The fights also were well-coordinated and full of details, though I admit that they lacked a bit in creativity.

Posted on with categories: The Animatrix

Ah, CGI. Yet another style of animation, totally different from the others. This, however, doesn’t really mean that Final Flight of the Osiris is good. It’s actually the worst film so far.

See, the problem with Final Flight of the Osiris is that it has awesome graphics, but zero substance. Basically, what happens is a man and a woman are inside a mini-matrix, sparring with swords in sexy outfits when their ship suddenly gets attacked by robots. The rest of the film basically features lots of guns fired at these robots and the robots getting inside the ship and destroying it, causing as much explosions as possible in the process.

The action scenes it features also aren’t very exciting. The fight in the mini-matrix is basically two people stipping each other’s clothes off. The sound effects also made no sense at all. Swords cut way too easily through air. And even though the choreography looks interesting, it remains uninspired. The robots attacking the ship also aren’t very worthwile. Basically, we see lots of guns shooting and robots crawling, but nothing that looks impressive.

Also, sorry for the lack of screenshots. I played this one in a weird format which doesn’t support screenshots, and I only managed to take one of them before my computer started acting weird. And I’m not exactly motivated to spend time to this one.

Posted on 21 August 2006 with categories: The Animatrix



Yet another style: a film noir. Like any proper film noir, everything’s in black and white. The art style is the most realistic one yet. It isn’t as overly pointy as in Matriculated, or as overexaggerated as in World Record. And certainly not as messy as in Kid’s Story. Everything also seems to have gotten a noise filter.

The story is about a detective who accepts a case to look for Trinity. He gathers a bit of information, and then realizes that there’ve been more detectives on the same case. One killed himself, one went missing and one went crazy. The latter keeps claiming that Trinity isn’t real. The detective then continues to search through chatrooms and cafes, frequented by hackers. At one point, he finds a certain Red Queen, who happens to be Trinity.

Trinity sends the message to him that in order to meet her, he’ll have to jump the first of six brooks. This appears to be a train. Inside the train, he sees Trinity. She reckons that he might be able to make it. The entire assignment seems to have been a test for him, to see whether he would make it. She then puts some kind of machine on him, and extracts something out of his eye. It’s the same thing they tried to poison Neo with in the movie, I think.

Then a couple of men in suits appear, and chase after them. However, the detective himself begins to change into one of these men. Trinity then shoots him. Then the two of them talk a bit, and Trinity escapes.

To be honest, I didn’t really like this one. It felt like a bit too fast, and the references were all lost on me. First of six brooks? He talks about a certain Alice who jumps the second brook to get her into the woods. Alice jumps the first brook and then she boards a train. Who the heck is this Alice, why does she jump brooks, why are a number of streets highlighted on the map? How does he know which train to catch? In fact… what is a brook anyway?

I think that this film was a bit too short for its own good. I think it would be better if it borrowed some time from Matriculated. In the end, the case is interesting, though the other three films were thought-provoking. This one, however, wasn’t. I don’t seem to have any inspiration because of it.

Posted on 20 August 2006 with categories: The Animatrix



Whoa… this was actually quite interesting. Quite interesting indeed. It’s most definitely the best of the three films I saw so far. I’m impressed.

The art this time looks totally different once more. It seems like the overall picture had to endure a filter which darkened all of the colours, making it a grey world. Not quite like Matriculated, though. The backgrounds are a bit more simple than before. The faces of the characters aren’t pointy like in Matriculated, though neither as round as in Kid’s Story. It’s more like they’ve turned square. The animation is a combination of the smoothness in Marticulated and the distorted anatomy of Kid’s Story. The art remains fluid and crisp at all times, though.

The story’s another awakening. In Matriculated, an enemy machine got converted to join the human’s side by own will. In Kid’s Story, Neo sends messages to a kid, who awakens afterwards after seeing the truth. This time, we’ve got a case in which the main character awakens on his own strength. In mere eight minutes, the creators managed to deliver something extremely fascinating.

We see an athlete, getting for the world championships 100 metres while a narrator voice explains the background of the story. The runners stand ready, and the start shot is given. We then see a flashback, in which the same guy seems to have made the newspapers in breaking the world record in the preliminaries of the same contest. He managed to get right under 9 seconds (8.99 seconds, to be exact). However, gossip about him using dope are circulating around. Dan, the main character, claims that these are untrue in a phone call to his father.

Meanwhile, Dan lifts off. What follows is some scenes of him, running in slow-motion. This looked kind of creepy. Then, another flashback. This time with his coach. It seems that Dan has worked too much, causing his muscles to be at the limit of bursting. When this happens, his athlete-career is over. The coach is keen on stopping Dan, though Dan wants to run, no matter what. It seems that he wants a final chance to prove everyone wrong who’s been claiming that Dan’s old record was impossible to beat. The coach then abandons him. Or so it seems.

Back to the race, Dan begins to look more creepy by the minute as the animation keeps getting more and more distorted. We then see a journalist, looking at him. Another flashback: the night before the race. The journalist meets up with him, in an attempt for an interview. Dan claims that it releases you from your world. That you become totally free.

Back to the race, Dan’s leg is beginning to show signs that it can’t take much more. This is expressed quite graphically. While gross in one viewpoint, it did add up to the intensity of the scene at another viewpoint. Then, one of his legs gives up, and the muscles inside of it break, causing quite a graphical shock. He however, continues to run, even though his leg has given up. He actually continues running, and surpasses every other runner. This shows signs that he’s about to awaken.

Meanwhile, the men in suits have arrived yet again. They have to stop him from awakening at all costs, and some of the nearby runners also reveal to be men in suits, attempting to stop him. This however, fails. This is even more motivation for the guy to reach the finish line. In the end, right before he reaches it, he awakens in his cell. A robot sees this, and forcefully puts him back to sleep.

Back to the race, Dan crosses the finish line, falls and crashes. He managed to break the world record: 8.72 seconds. A quick shot of the matrix shows him fainting. We then switch to the hospital, in which Dan is in a wheelchair, being pushed by a nurse. He’s holding a couple of walnuts, though his face shows that he’s lost the motivation for everything.

Then, we hear the men in suits evaluate Dan’s case, as they see him in his wheelchair. It’s an interesting case, though they reckon it’s nothing to be concerned about. He’ll live in his shell for the rest of his life, not doing anything. His memory has been erased and he’s got quite a souvenir left from it, a world record nobody will be able to beat.

Dan then surprises everyone when he suddenly utters the word “free”. He then stands up, continuing to utter the word “free”. The walnuts he dropped begin to move on their own. Dan attempts to float a bit, until he collapses and the film ends.

It’s quite shocking that World Record features a guy, being treated in a way like this. His body and mind get destroyed throughout this film, though I think that that’s the reason it works. Especially when, after all the hardships his mind endured by both the machines as the men in suits, he still continues remembering what he saw. This just shows how complex a human mind is. When humans are ignorant, they’re easy to control. Though something goes wrong in this when they’ve set their minds to something. Especially the stubborn people. I guess that it isn’t easy to just forget “the truth” after you saw it with your own eyes.

I also liked the shortness of this movie. Both Kid’s Story as Matriculated dragged on a bit. World Record, however, felt like it had fully utilised every second of it. This makes Dan even more intriguing. We know almost nothing about him. Right now, I feel like I want to know more about him. And that’s actually in a good way. I think that, because the creators decided to focus on this case, and this case alone that it worked so well.

The audio-department also was a major plus. Matriculated did this below average. I can’t even remember whether they actually had sounds at this point. Kid’s Story featured interesting background music, especially during the chase. It contributed to the scenes, though it wasn’t anything special. World Record, however, made excellent use of the available background tunes. Changing from fast-beat techno for the race itself to psychedelic, apocalyptic tunes for the moments at which Dan saw the truth, they fitted perfectly.

The only point at which World Record looked clearly inferior to the other two? The background art. Especially Kid’s Story features high-quality background art, which are quite stunning to see. Matriculated also played with this in an interesting way. Not to mention the psychedelic surroundings. In World Record, however, the backgrounds are kept simple. Very simple.

Posted on 18 August 2006 with categories: The Animatrix



Matriculated is entirely different from Kid’s Story. Especially in terms of art, animation and style. While Kid’s Story had really messy animation, everything is moves extremely fluid n Matriculated. The extremely messy drawings have made way for a strange, futuristic-like look on one side, and very colourful, psychedelic CG-scenes on the other side. In this case, literally.

The story takes place outside of the Matrix. It deals with a group of rebels, one woman in particular. The overall air is dark, making the drawings fit quite well in their surroundings. The woman runs into a couple of robots: runners. They’ve got quite original designs, moving with extremely thin legs. In any case, after a small chase, the woman takes out both of the runners, and one of them gets taken to the camp of the rebels.

The goal of these rebels is to attempt to convert this machine to their side. Not by reprogramming it, but making it join their forces out of its own will. They do this by connecting both themselves as the runner to a Mini-Matrix (how did they call these again?). They get brought into a psychedelic world, in which an illusion is given to the runner that it can rely on the rebels. It’s quite interesting to see how they managed to do it. Slowly, the machine changes from machine into a humanoid-shape. We follow the runner, as it tries to make sense out of the virtual world. In the end, it gets converted.

Though then, it seems that reinforcements have arrived. It seems that the runner, before it was defeated, called for backup. This backup now has found the rebels’ main quarter, and are starting to destroy everything and everyone. In the end, the intruders get destroyed, but the price for this is high. The runner aids in fighting the intruders. When all is finished, the runner is the only one left standing, with the woman badly hurt, as the only survivor. The runner plugs the two of them back in the Mini-Matrix, in the hope of saving her. Inside, however, the woman is terrified when she sees the runner. So terrified, that she flees, and dies.

It’s indeed quite sad to see the woman who tried to convert you, the woman you believed was nice and embraced you, scaring herself to death by seeing you, only minutes later. Also, the fact that AI can actually be converted by toying with their morals also is quite intriguing. It’s shown something fake, though its AI isn’t able to determine that it’s fake. That’s why it works. The style of this film also was quite appealing. Both the colourful, psychedelic scenes, as well as the dark, futuristic scenes looked stunning. Especially the fluid animation was quite impressive.

Still, the voice-acting was once again a problem. I don’t know whether it was my version of the video, or it was meant to be like that, but the voices sounded really vague, which didn’t really work. I also feel that this film dragged on a bit too much. Currently, its length is 16 minutes. It could easily have been brought back to just ten of these. I also only began to like the ending when I watched it for the second time. Dunno what caused that.

Overall, it was quite an interesting watch. I think I liked Kid’s Story a bit more, though. But that’s mostly because of the themes which were more appealing, and the interesting art style.

Posted on 17 August 2006 with categories: The Animatrix



I’ve been taking a look at the shows which are to air during the Fall-Season, and I doubt that that will be an overall good season. Seriously, eight bishoujo-anime. Isn’t that getting a bit too much!? Apart from that, another majority of the shows seem to be either boring, or tasteless shounen stuff. That probably only leaves a few gems, which will probably be blogged. I’ll probably do a full preview of the fall-season at the August-Summary. In any case, most of the shows I’m blogging will be ending as the fall-season begins, which means more time to blog about some interesting anime which aired in the past. Not only Ayatsuri Sakon and Popolocrois, but also the interesting-sounding shows which I have yet to see and some more unknown gems. I’m also going to check out some of Studio 4°C. They’ve already proved that they can do awesome stuff by producing Mahou Shoujotai, and I’ve also noticed that they’ve got a certain unique art and animation style.

So I ran into the Animatrix. It’s a collection of nine short movies, regarding the Matrix. They’re all playing in the world of the Matrix. The interesting part is that it’s partially been written by american directors. Studio 4°C handled the animation, along with Madhouse and apart from that, several big names in the japanese anime-industry wrote/directed parts of it. I’ve only seen the first one of the Matrix-movies, but then again, it never stopped me from watching before. I also have no idea whether there’s any order at which you have to see the stories, so I decided to just randomly pick ones. The first is “Kid’s Story”.

The story’s like this: it follows the teenager named Michael Popper. He’s been having dreams, in which he fell from a height. Strangely enough, the dream feels more real that the life he’s currently living. Neo also seems to be sending messages to him. He then goes to school, and then it shows that he wants Neo to take him to the Matrix, as he keeps writing suggestive lines in his notebook (eg. “get me out of here”).

Then, his mobile phone goes off, in the middle of class. Needless to say that his teacher doesn’t like this, especially when Michael seems to be doing rather bad in his classes. When the phone goes off for the second time, even though Michael’s sure he turned it off, the teacher has had enough of it, and attempts to take away the phone. Michael picks up, and hears Neo. Apparently, dangerous men in black suits have come to get him, as he knows about the Matrix. Neo urges him to run away.

Michael then loses it, and runs away like crazy, making use of his skateboard, inside school, hurting countless of people and objects in the process. He eventually flees in the girl’s bathroom, and climbs outside a window. He then makes it to the top of the school building, though the men in black suits have already been waiting for him. He then drops himself from the same roof, with the message to Neo that he believes in the things he said. He then relives the dream he had, and hits the floor.

Everyone around him thinks he died, and he’s buried. People blame the fact that he was mentally unstable. That reality can be quite difficult to take for some people. This world must have been cold and alienating for such a boy. Meanwhile, outside of the Matrix, we hear Trinity’s voice. Michael begins to awaken. Trinity can’t believe that self-substantiation was possible like that. I think it means something like getting loose from the matrix without having to use the red pill.

The first thing noticable about this film is the unique art it features. It’s by no means pretty. It’s actually very messy. Some scenes really have look as if they were drawn by a pencil, and then colored. Overall, it does fit the mood, which is dark, grey and light at the same time. The action scene, in which Michael flees from everyone especially looked good. I really like action scenes in which the animation drops all boundaries, and continues with really messy art, and this was a great example of it.

The fact remains, however, that this anime is one of the few who has actually been made in english. This made the voices rather annoying, except for Neo and Trinity, perhaps. But that could be because they were voiced by their original actors.

The most interesting part of this short film was the reaction of the adults, at the end of the movie. They’re wrong, in a sense. They’re talking about reality, and how Michael couldn’t accept it. However, they’re the ones away from reality. Michael was the one who was trying to reach it. But the fact remains that they don’t know they’re in this fake reality. They’ve been told that the world they live in is real for their entire lifes. They never heard about anything close to the Matrix. The untruth, is truth for them.

Overall, this was an interesting watch. It’s also short, so I can’t say I was bored.

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K-Off
@anon196168 I'm all ears for suggestions.
Anonymous196168
If youre going to japan maybe you could do something more unique than just taking pictures of locations? Plenty of those already on Google.
Kaiser Eoghan
Noticing a server error showing up on the shoutbox there.
AidanAK47
Good point, normal users generally just stay anono. ke69Vin?...69...really....that's just sad humor right there.
K-Off
That was most definitely little Kevin as well. 9vinke6 is obviously an anagram.
AidanAK47
@9Vinke6, I don't know what you are trying to share but it ain't an image. Deleting your comment as I don't want dodgy files on the site.
Anonymous181098
Are you kidding??!! Tokyo is amazing if you want excitement & you want to experience social life. But I agree go to Osaka. If tokyo is like Quebec then osaka is like toronto. More laid back
Anonymous180231
OPM was a shoe-in. It's showing very good success on Adult Swim on US TV and Viz is throwing big dollars to keep the gravy train rolling
AidanAK47
One Punch Man season 2 was announced. Expected but most certainly welcome.
...now I need Re:Zero season 2.
CJayTiiii
Honestly, if you are going to Kyoto essentially no shrine is worth visiting in Tokyo because none of them are as nice as the ones in Kyoto and they are essentially all tourist traps.
K-Off
If you guys insist I'll give Osaka serious consideration. But again I'd hate to gloss over Kyoto or Tokyo. But anyhow my 4 week stay in Seoul will be eternity compared to the Japan trip.
CJayTiii
Ikebukuro is probably used almost as much as shibuya? Specifically for durarara right around the station (east side) is used a lot. Kabuki-Cho in shinjuku is definitely used a lot but I couldn't tell you in what off the top of my head.
CJayTiii
Also as someone who lived in Kyoto and now lives in Tokyo, I would suggest spending as much time as possible in Kyoto as there is just so much stuff to do there. Tokyo there honestly really isn't that much stuff to do here other than going out to drink I feel. Lol also Osaka is only a 30 min train ride (about 5$ USD) from Kyoto so it's easy to go there for a couple hours
K-Off
@Mario I'll be home by new years unfortunately, I'll have to settle for Christmas in tokyo.
@CJay Thanks, any suggestions for Tokyo? I'm trying to avoid cliché locations for anime-related scenery. Like Shibuya.
CJayTiii
For Kyoto, Tatami Galaxy is probably the best anime for side by side comparisons. Kamogawa river, Kiyamachi street, and shimogamo shrine are famous areas that pretty much constantly make appearances throughout the show.
SuperMario
@K-Off: Disney Tokyo? haha If it was me I've chosen somewhere more... locally. But who I am to judge as I celebrated last New Year Eve in Times Square, the most tourist spot of them all. But I really hope you can spend some time to go to some shrines for the New Year in Tokyo.
K-Off
@Mario The person I'm travelling with wants to spend Christmas at Disney Tokyo, and unsurprisingly nearly all places will still be open, same as NYC. Christ, I'm more worried about my wallet.
SuperMario
@K-Off: Makes sense. I'd say better stick in one place for long days rather than short trips in several places. Even 10 days for those 2 places wouldn't be enough imo, well especially during Xmas since the streets will be busy and many places could be closed (I guess?)
K-Off
@Mario It doesn't seem like I'll go to Osaka, the goal is to explore Kyoto and Tokyo and much as possible for a week and a half. If I can squeeze it in there I will, but that means spending less time in Kyoto and/or Tokyo. The bulk of my trip will be in Tokyo for now.
SuperMario
Yeah, Kenshin had a whole Kyoto act, but it was more historical anw and I feel it didn't explore the city that much (more of a ruined city)
Really, only uchoten Kazoku, tatami galaxy and durarara come to mind. Are you planning to go to Osaka as well? I heard from my friend Osaka is about an hour drive from Kyoto only.
K-Off
@Anon174851 Ah good one.
@Mike Thanks. Durarara is a good suggestion, but I haven't watched Rurouni Kenshin.
Mike
@Kaiser Sure, the story doesn't do anything for me but it's not a waste of time.
@K-Off You can do pretty much anything in Tokyo I'll bet. Anime in general aside from shows like Durarara don't emphasize the setting very much... Kyoto is more interesting, rurouni kenshin is the first thing that comes to mind.
Anonymous174851
uchouten kazoku is a really good one set in kyoto!
K-Off
Haven't heard of it. Anyways, do you guys have any suggestions for favorite anime series set in Kyoto or Tokyo? I'm planning my itinerary and the idea is to take a lot of side by side comparison pictures from their anime depictions to RL. I have YuruYuri, SYD, Detective Conan, and various KyoAni spots in mind, but my brain isn't remembering others.
Kaiser Eoghan
I'm considering finding some War/military manga to read, has anyone read Gunka no balthazar? Is it worthwhile?
AidanAK47
@Anon164960, They announced a second season for it so they ain't done with that trainwreck yet.
Anonymous165129
Gate
Anonymous164960
So Rewrite took the "Bad End" route. Interesting. Their choice, not the show of course which was a freaking mess from start to finish.
Kaiser Eoghan
Ah, reminding me that I have not left Ireland since 2012 when I went to Rome. Although I have floated around the idea of maybe going to Slovakia.
K-Off
@Mario Thanks, although I'll be working the whole time I'm at Seoul with sundays off. Expecting about 40-50 hours of work a week. Sucks that your trip got canned, in the Winter there's no place you'd want to be other than southern California.
SuperMario
Congrats K-Off. Hope you enjoy the trip. I myself originally planned to go to US on this December but now the plan got wrecked. Should be fun spending Xmas in Japan especially
K-Off
Got my international drivers permit from AAA today, and it also looks like I'm stuck with over half the travel fees since I've signed myself off the agency plan. It's now official, I'm going to Seoul and then spending my christmas holidays in Tokyo. Been a long time since I left the country, last time was in 2011.
SuperMario
That was me Mario
Anonymous140274
@Masky: it wasn't, but Gui Niao did mention the pipe has multi-purpose functions: do far he uses the pipe to write, to create a hallucination smoke, to make an actual bushfire, to open the lock, now to be a sword-pipe. What's next? To be a wifi modem? to be a boomerang? to shapeshift into an umbrella?
Masky
So Thunderbolts Fantasy :D Totally called the pipe being a sword (assuming it wasn't shown earlier and I just forgot about it)
AidanAK47
@Anon146321, typos are hard to avoid when you write fast. What's really important to is that the point gets across, which it did.
Anonymous146321
Medium not meduim
Masky
I wonder if trolls consider people explaining why their trolling is bad a successful trolling .-. I mean, my experience is that most of trolls aren't really smartest or most creative of people, I think most of them are happy if people just talk about them.
AidanAK47
@Anon141285, oh come on boy. Put some effort into trolling. You need to get people to actual think you believe what you are saying. Here you have already messed up because you use the old "Chinese cartoons" which is supposed to piss of anime fans because it suggests you are ignorant of the meduim but then you reference the nukes showing full well you know where they are from. You have failed.
Anonymous141285
Chinese cartoons proof that two nukes weren't enough. Or were too much depending on the perspective
SuperMario
oh, talking about teenage horror female movie, make sure to check out Raw whenever its available online. That is one hell of a fun cannibal ride!
SuperMario
my point is we tend to spend our stupid 20s phase feel like its wasted, but really it does help develop our hobby/sense/wisdom, whatever it is.
Kaiser Eoghan
I find myself now that I've grown up wanting to punch kid characters from horror films lol
Kaiser Eoghan
About the watching stories with younger female characters...its starting to feel like I shouldn't be or that it doesn't feel appropriate, actually sort of awkward/skeevy.
SuperMario
True enough. But remember that even Quentin Tarantino had his 20s basically just a movie-clerk, watched movies like a maniac and he made that classic Pulp Fiction when he was like 33
Kaiser Eoghan
Looking back It feels dickish that I laughed reading NHK.
Kaiser Eoghan
I mean look at Re-life, I mean ow, everyone went through that.
Kaiser Eoghan
I think we'll find that stage where we'll get irritated by stories reminding us of our stupid 20s phases eventually just as some teenage focused anime/manga annoyingly remind us of being teens.
Kaiser Eoghan
In terms of anime/manga, much as I'd still see myself liking NHK I could see myself getting more frustrated with the lead character now being in my early 30s.
Kaiser Eoghan
In the past year I've been looking at hentai/ecchi imageboards not as often as I used to.
Kaiser Eoghan
Judy Delphy and Juliette Binoche have aged surprisingly well...
Ah its less fancying/finding them attractive, moreso taking notice of them.
SuperMario
I can understand the others but Meryl Streep too? Man, you're aging I can tell
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Julianne Moore, Isabelle Huppert, Meryl Sreep, Susan Sarandon, Cate Blanchett.
SuperMario
@Kaiser: like whom if I may ask?
SuperMario
But I'm always interested in women issues myself so Mustang just hit me hard
Kaiser Eoghan
Its a sign of me aging I guess too. I'm noticing older actresses too now where I wouldn't have in the past.
SuperMario
Looking forward to Under the Shadow too, also really keen to see how The Bad Batch would turn out to be
SuperMario
Strangely I've become more engaged with teen, coming-of-age films recently (well, Aku no Hana is sort of teen drama as well),but yes, old man's psyche is my thing too
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Synecdoche, the passenger, winter light, anomalisa , wild strawberries , la notte for example.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: The day is coming where drama centred around twentyboppers won't have the same level of effect on me. Had I seen buffalo 66 5 years ago I would have been all over it. Old man/middle age angst is becoming more my thing.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I'm honestly having a harder time getting into films that focus on young girls/teenagers.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: Theres only a few upcoming films left I'm looking forward to, Elle, Valley violence, whispering star and under the shadow.
Kaiser Eoghan
@Mario: I appreciate mustang for the issue it deals with and addresses but I felt it predictable and the drama didn't hit harshly enough. It feels like an academy/oscars film.
SuperMario
Kaiser: remember I mention about watching those 96 Cannes line-ups? I think I will get to watch them soon, since I downloaded all the movies already
SuperMario
@Kaiser: btw, you hated Mustang? It's also one of my favorite film so far.
SuperMario
but maybe think of it that way will make the manga more entertaining...
SuperMario
You see Aku no Hana as a dark comedy? haha I'm speechless
Kaiser Eoghan
Like you Mario I don't care for heavy infodumping and that took me out of the new world.
Kaiser Eoghan
Bebop had that problem for me in that I saw outlaw star and trigun first.
Kaiser Eoghan
I still feel aku no hana is a guilty pleasure manga, a crazy dark comedy or maybe thats just my humour.
Kaiser Eoghan
Hataraku had me laughing up to episode 7, while Amagi felt stale from the start.
Looking back on Baccano I still like Claire and Russo but the other characters not so much, the main series is enjoyable enough but the extra episodes hold back the score.
I've never watched Habane straight through although I have finished the series. Ghost vs ergo? Ergos final episode wrecked the show.
Topgavin
I thing Hataraku was a lot more consistent, but Amagi had some standout episodes. For me the OVA, the pirate ship episode and the school episode were great. "Simply put, we have to go lewder" is one of my fav quotes
K-Off
How was that by the way? I never bothered to watch Amagi Brilliant Park all the way through because I felt so cynical about it after the first two episodes. Hataraku Mao Sama on the other hand was genuinely refreshing for the first half of the season.
SuperMario
In other news, The Eccentric Family is getting 2nd season. Now I'm filled with joy
SuperMario
Still feel bad to compare an 1-cour series (Baccano) to an 4-cours one. But in this case Baccano would take my cake.
Topgavin
I reckon The Devil is a Part Timer vs Amagi Brilliant Park would be a fun one, and I wouldn't know which would win.
AidanAK47
Baccano vs Durarara might make a good matchup. Baccano is the better one but Durarara does seem to be more popular.
Syndrome
Yeah it is a bit obvious and they dont share much in common anyway. Just that they are two of the most well known anime out there. I enjoyed NGE more than Cowboy Bebop, but I agree on the later beeing overall a better anime.
AidanAK47
Oh look. Berserks Manga is on Haitus again. Muira...just..at this point I ain't even mad. Just disappointed.
SuperMario
Well, new post on Flowers of Evil is out. Come eat it up.
SuperMario
@Syndrome: was thinking about that match-up (NGE vs Cowboy Bebop) but isn't it too obvious? I always intend to pick something that caught you guys off-guard haha
AidanAK47
@Syndrome, no contest. Cowboy Bebop wins outright.
Syndrome
On a serious note, for related anime, I would be curious about something like Ergo Proxy against Ghost in the Shell
Syndrome
Go for NGE vs Cowboy Bebop and watch the world burn
SuperMario
Yeah, I agree it's one of the main factors, but even so From the New World had a higher grade too. But I wouldn't pick Haibane Renmei against From the New World if I didn't think it had a chance to win. Those who loved the former really loved it, while people more appreciate From the New World than actually love it. Well, can't beat the consensus I guess.
Topgavin
I'd say a major reason for that would be the popularity difference. On MAL, Haibane has a following of 110k people, with FTNW having 270k.
SuperMario
I'm personally quite disappointed with the results. Will try harder for a more competitive match-up next time
AidanAK47
@Mario, if you say so. I say by now the victor has been decided.
SuperMario
@Aidan: we don't need to sticky the Versus Show again, as I will put up the Aku no Hana post tomorrow anyway
AidanAK47
Yeah the brightness got a bit much in some places after episode 18.
Topgavin
I thought the brightness was done well in the episode with Rem sitting beside Subaru's bed and her smiling/crying, but yeah this was too much
SuperMario
@anon125687: my thought exactly. While I was watching it I thought to myself that it's too bright!!
Anonymous125687
Why do final episodes overdo the blur effect and fuzzy lighting its literally over dramatic cancer. Just let it end normally ffs
afgm
Well, it's hard, since it doesn't really feel finished, so even if you know it will eventually end well if given a chance, you can't really put your full confidence behind those bets
AidanAK47
Got a bit long winded in that review and yet I feel like I really didn't get across what makes the series so good.
AidanAK47
Well that's the Re:Zero review written up. I will get to work on 91 days next and maybe Prisms Illya maybe after that. Lost all entuasim after they messed up that last episode in Illya. Overall it's been pretty disappointing.
AidanAK47
As for that twist. I think they could work it easily into a first episode. The impact would still be there for people marathoning the thing in the future and it would be a good "Oh Shit!" moment to start the second season. If they jump ahead a bit to a certain moment it would actually make for a great opener.
AidanAK47
I say the only chance of season two not coming would be if White Fox doesn't like money. Considering that the pace which the light novel adaption has sped up from every few months to a release every month I guess that they want to make that second season as badly as we want it. At this pace they could start a second season in maybe a years time. Maybe every half a year depending on cour length.
Syndrome
Also, if season 2 ever come (that would be a surprise if not, and truly annoying), I dont know how they will manage with the "twist", as something this impactful would come way too fast without any kind of setup. Wait and see, I guess.
Syndrome
After seeing the last Re:Zero I couldnt help but spoil myself, and I kind of understand why WhiteFox went with that kind of ending, skipping what would be a giant shtstorm on the internet. Even though, in a sad world where there would be no season 2, Im still a bit disappointed with the ending. Its nice to wrap it up this way but its a stale regarding the plot and there is no food for thought.
SuperMario
@aidan: you sure are fast when it comes to Re:Zero haha. Alrighty, we'll go with that then
AidanAK47
@mario,I am putting up a Re:Zero post. Tommarrow. I will unsticky it for a day and then we can sticky it again.
reaLjustified
@K-Off No worries, it's so messed up. Stay safe.
SuperMario
@Aidan: if you going to post Re:Zero review soon, you can unsticky the Versus Show post, otherwise I will take it down in 2 days
SuperMario
@K-Off: I feel for ya. Glad that there were only minor injuries. I heard a blogger claimed that he did it because of the gay rights. Sound bullsh*t to me
K-Off
Shit ton of manga have gotten updates but I don't feel like talking about them for a while, lost my appetite.
K-Off
@Kaiser Living in NYC all my life I remember 9/11, flight 587 crash in Queens, the Hudson River water landing, and now this.
AidanAK47
So far it seems most of the people calling it disappointing are those who know whats comes after that last scene and were looking forward to how the fanbase reacts to it. But it would have been a pretty terrible as well as evil way to end the series.
Topgavin
Yeah, I thought it gave enough closure for us to be satisfied yet still desperately wanting the next season.
AidanAK47
@Anon120947, I really don't see what's so disappointing about it. I thought it was a pretty solid way to end the series.
Kaiser Eoghan
I think at most the worst thing that happened in my area was two conmen going around and an gangster attack on a nearby hotel.
Kaiser Eoghan
@K-off: Honestly, glad to hear you're safe. And having a bomb go off nearby would make me feel paranoid.
@Anon: I'm waiting, waiting for reviews written after the show ends.
Anonymous120947
Feels like it has been done this way in case of a never happening season 2... to kind of close it.
Anonymous120947
Wow, that last episode of Re:Zero was pure straight disapointment... finishing like this feels is real suffering.
K-Off
Well, we don't know yet. We don't know who did it, if it was connected to the pipe bomb explosion in jersey, etc. But the second device found on 27th street does seem to point the situation towards terrorism.
afgm
Luckily it doesn't seem to be a terror attack
K-Off
Yeah. I was a good 8 blocks away inside a restaurant so I didn't even know until later. It must have been a pretty small bomb since all the injured have apparently already been released from the hospital.
AidanAK47
Damn. Just looked it up. Good thing you weren't at the area when the bomb went off.
K-Off
Fucking hell, transit is so congested I still can't get home. Luckily it seems like there's no fatalities according to the initial reports, there are still a shit ton of people around central for shelter. I didn't hear or feel the explosion at chelsea, and currently I'm at lenox with my bicycle. So congested it looks like I'm going to have to walk my bike a few more miles before I get picked up. L
AidanAK47
Watched The Empire of Corpses. I makes me sad to see a great idea be turned into such a mediocre movie. I think this concept could have been put to much better use but instead it decided to go with the blandest option.
SuperMario
The guy who will direct it is a live-action director who only had Psycho Pass the Movie (not a good one) as an anime director. WTH? Don't know what to think about this new FLCL now
SuperMario
and it will be co-produced by Adult Swim on top of that?
SuperMario
How comes I just noticed this old news that FLCL will get two-seasons sequel...
Masky
And by that I mean "Huh, haven't checked the blog for two days"
Masky
Yay commenting on two days old blog posts
AidanAK47
Finished rewatching Re:Zero and now ready for the finale. Let's see how this goes.
AidanAK47
I will be mourning the now dead hope of a somewhat decent Berserk adaption.
The last few episodes were not bad but purely on the merits of the source material and not the adaption.
SuperMario
@Bam: I'll be mourning indeed.
@Anon 112098: I haven't watched Chef, but it has more to do with me not interested in chef's life whatsoever. Is it good?
Bam
I'm out of town until Sunday evening. The Berserk finale post will hopefully be up early Monday mourning, followed by the overall cour review a bit later in the week.
Anonymous112098
Habe u seen Chef with John Favreau?
AidanAK47
I am quite upset with how Sliver link handled that scene. It was the one scene I wanted done right. Just that one scene...and they screwed it up.
SuperMario
He scored the Prince of Egypt? I didn't know that, but yeah I remember it had a great score. Also "When you believe"
K-Off
Well, a lot of his earlier work is just brilliant. Prince of Egypt in my opinion is his greatest work.
SuperMario
*nothing wrong
SuperMario
Well, Hans Zimmer could do nothing really; but that's a reason why I have a bit of problem with his scores. Everything he made are solid but ultimately sound the same to me.
SuperMario
Agree that the music has been excellent. Not only the soundtrack thou, but the sound editting in general is great (that ringtone during the Great Whale for example).
AidanAK47
@Mario, Understandable. As much as I love this show, I admit that it has elements I am sure could turn off people.
Also I really should have talked about the music in this series more. It really is a phenomenal soundtrack. I hear they were going with a more cinematic approach to it with Hans Zimmer being a primary inspiration.
SuperMario
@Aidan: it has been a fun ride, I'm glad I stick with it till the end; although I'm not as enthusiastic about it as you are. :)
AidanAK47
Re-watching Re:Zero in preparation for the finale. Still is awesome a second time through. In fact the middle part of the series I felt dragged fairs a whole lot better when marathoned though. Noticing a number of things watching the second time. For one Roswell has a really goddamn annoying way of talking. I say I will be giving this on a very favorable review.
Anonymous110962
Hugh Mungus
AidanAK47
@TopGavin, I haven't watched it yet but I hope what you said about the animation isn't too bad because this is where they need to be on top of their game.
Topgavin
So that fate episode was interesting, lotsa stuff happened. Seemed like the animation was worse than usual and my god how could the subs screw up the incantation.
reaLjustified
@Aramus Why would you want to send the picture to your friend? Tell 'em to see it for themselves at the site! lol.
Friend
Most of the time they meant no harm, I think it's always about getting recognition. They quickly take them down after I send them a polite email, and I let them save their ego without smearing them on their page.
afgm
(ok maybe a little fault should go to them lol)
afgm
@Friend: That sucks, but its definitely understandable. People can be pretty thoughtless at times (no fault to them of course).
afgm
tiger mask did make it into the upper quartile though, which is surprising
Friend
@afgm I don't have a large internet presence with my work exactly because I've had situations with theft on Pinterest. For work, I just carry USBs with my portfolio pieces in them :/
Friend
@Aramus Heya, thanks for the inquiry. Unfortunately the fell image won't be available openly unless for commercial purposes, but otherwise feel free to contact me in my business email! :)
afgm
ah you know what? I read the title Time Bokan 24 and thought it had 24 votes x)
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