3rd times the charm (We’re moving again)

11 07 2009


Sunset on an era of this blogs life

Sunset on an era of this blog's life

Hopefully this is the last time I’ll have to make a post like this for a LONG time.  This makes major move #3 in the one year history of this blog.  But signs are up… We’re moving to Kokido Kombine after a recommendation from Minnie of Hey, Say, Anime!  Almost everything else is about the same.  Same post formats, same 4 writers, just an updated look and a cleaner site =D

So long wordpress.com! We were good together, but it’s time we move on to better things =).  And now, without further ado, The new blog address =D




Summer Pilots: Aoi Hana (and a rant about gender roles in anime romance)

7 07 2009

Hi guys, it’s Menma.  I didn’t die, probably.  At Tekky’s urging, I chose a summer series to cover, and that’ll be Aoi Hana (“Blue Flowers”).  As far as I can tell, it’s a shoujo-ai slice of life drama, about two childhood friends who are reunited in high school and find themselves drawn to each other romantically.  From what I can see it’ll be a slow, bittersweet journey, set against that kind of watercolor background that makes you weirdly nostalgic for places you’ve never been (or maybe you have, but I haven’t).

In terms of sight and sound, Aoi Hana is very pretty.  A lot of the time the art, especially the background, looks like rough sketches, but in a good way.  The scenery, all watery greens and beiges and blues, and the soft piano music in the background, make you feel like you’re in one of those serene cities from a Ghibli movie.  Think Mimi wo Sumaseba or Majo no Takkyuubin.  Yes, it’s that nostalgic Ghibli feeling.  The character designs even feel Ghibli-like.  I’m sure that as soon as I publish this someone will say “Hey Menma how did you not know that Aoi Hana was made by Ghibli” or something and then I’ll feel silly.  But anyway, if you like Ghibli, you’ll like the feel of this series.


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Hajime no Ippo manga is pretty epic.

6 07 2009


I never thought I could become a big fan of a sports manga, much less a boxing manga, but here I am trying to burn through 800+ chapters of Hajime no Ippo.

I would like you to imagine my friend. This friend of mine is tall, burly, and if that isn’t manly enough for you, sports a rugged beard. He enjoys anime like the rest of us here, but is especially well-known for his great devotion to all things manly and gar. So when he first introduced Hajime no Ippo to me, I imagined testosterone-filled slugfests with sweaty men and quite a few crude jokes.

And boy, was I right! (Well, not as many crude jokes as I thought, but they’re there.)

But it really is a lot more than that. As with all long-running series, the manga has a huge cast, and the way the whole cast interacts is wonderful and charming. The manly slugfests aren’t simply people duking it out in the ring, but involves quite a bit of strategy and tactics. I don’t know much about boxing, so I don’t know how accurate the depiction is…but I’ve certainly learned quite a few boxing terms. And the matches at the beginning start off pretty good, but the fights get intensely EPIC later on in the series. My heart can’t help but beat faster when I imagine the boxing ring, the gong ringing, and the cheers of a gigantic audience.

The manga’s not perfect, of course. In certain fights, the referee is oblivious to blatant fouls that everyone else seems to notice. (Oh well, the characters get over it pretty easily anyway.) The main character suffers from the standard shounen ailment of having a love interest but never actually GETTING anywhere with her. And at some points, it’s all too easy to predict the storyline. (But, the manga would be dumb if the main character kept losing matches, right?) Of course, it’s never predictable enough to get me bored–there are quite a few plot twists during fights and each fight has something unique. Even if I go in thinking “Ippo’s going to win this fight,” I can’t help but be on edge through the entire thing. The manga-ka really does have a way of making me feel like I’m watching an actual sport. In the end, Hajime no Ippo tells a very enjoyable story. Check it out if you like getting pumped up.

Maybe I should read more sports manga now. I’ll grow a rugged beard while I’m at it–wouldn’t mind feeling a little manlier.

~eNamorD (by the thrill of a comeback KO)

Umineko no Naku Koro ni – Episode 01

5 07 2009

Now, chances are, if you’ve taken a look around the blog, you probably know that I’m a huge Higurashi fan (*looks up at the banner*).  As such, Umineko no Naku Koro ni was easily the most anticipated anime (for me) of the season (maybe even year).  Although I didn’t get a chance to announce it, I did decide to blog this show come hell or high water.  With such high expectations, I was setting up the perfect trap for myself to be dissapointed.  Thankfully, that never happened. Read the rest of this entry »

Clannad ~After Story~ OVA – Kyou’s Story

2 07 2009

Okay, you’ve heard me praise After Story enough, so did you seriously think that I WOULDN’T blog this? To be fair, I’m not even compare this OVA to the main series.  Instead, my baseline for comparison is the Tomoyo Arc adaptation in the Clannad OVA.  Both adaptations were crammed into 1 episode.  Both arcs were romance based, so adapting it in the Nagisa-centered anime, was impossible. Most importantly, both adaptations dealt with characters that were just as, if not more than, popular than Nagisa.  So without further ado, my thoughts. Read the rest of this entry »

Spring Finales: Eden of the East

1 07 2009

When it came out, I billed this show as the clear cut winner of the spring anime season.  11 episodes later, where does it stand?  Well, Eden of the East was definitely the most unique anime of the season, heck, it had probably the most unique story of any anime in recent history.  The story is supported by a great main character and very well crafted setting.  However, about half way in, the narration gets complicated… almost too complicated.  Certain side characters and relationships ended up being left underdeveloped.   Read the rest of this entry »

We live!!!!! (Status of Spring 09 blogging)

15 06 2009

Yeah... that's kinda how I felt like last week

Okay, so apparently I was on acid when I thought I could blog 4 series AND keep up w/ studies… This quarter was sooo hellish, I couldn’t even blog, much less WATCH a single series (save the occasional CCS and Tsubasa).  Thankfully, the quarter ended last week, and it’s summer break now.  My original plan was to catch up with all the series and blog posts these two weeks, before the summer season starts.  Alas, an emergency popped up and I’m gonna be heading out of the country tmrw for the next two weeks. Read the rest of this entry »