K-ON! – Episode 02

10 04 2009

Again this post does not confirm that I’m gonna blog this series.  It just means that it’s a possiblity, and I don’t want to fall behind while I wait for the rest of the pilot episodes to premiere. 

This is episode was more standard K-ON! fare.  Yui being very airheaded, Ritsu being hotheaded, Mio being a fan favorite, and Tsumugi being, well, the rich ojou-sama type.  Talking about the plot would be kinda pointless since there isn’t any plot to begin with.  So instead, this post contains some thoughts that crossed my mind as I watched this episode. Read the rest of this entry »

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Earl and Fairy: Episode 1

15 03 2009

Hakushaku to Yousei – Earl and Fairy.  It’s based on light novels.  It is part mystery, part fantasy, and part romance.  I happened to see the first episode and I thought I’d give the rest a try, despite how silly it looked, because I like European settings, as bizarre as they usually are in anime.  I suspected I was in for a pure romance novel, but I gave it a chance…  It’s really not entirely terrible, but in general the pacing is not very good (a common problem with series made off of light novels), the characters are, for the most part, just kind of depressing in their codependence and sociopathy, and the whole thing plays like a bodice-ripper.  If you’re into that sort of thing, you’ll probably like it.  Either way, you’ll have more color terms added to your vocabulary than you ever wanted.

Let’s start with a summary of Episode 1.  Because it’s the first episode, I’ve gone over it with a fine-toothed comb, but  don’t worry, in future reviews I’ll leave more WTF moments for you, the valiant reader/watcher to discover!

Read the rest of this entry »





White Album – Episode 02

15 01 2009

Okay so I haven’t made my final decision as to what I’m blogging this season yet, but as I am leaning towards White Album right now, I figured it’d be better to blog the 2nd episdoe then to needlessly fall behind.

White Album contains a form of drama that’s underused and underrated in anime: the subtle drama. By episdoe two there haven’t been any major blowups or confessions, yet I can see some incredibly tense moments building up early on. This is partly due to the character dynamics. None of them are perfect, in fact they are far from it.

Touya doesn’t intend to betray Yuki, but, due to his inabiltiy to portray his thoughts accurately, he is leading on 3 other girls. I keep on hearing people compare Touya to Makoto from School Days (which warrants all the “Nice Boat” ending talks i’m hearing). I don’t buy this. Makoto was completely selfish as well as being unclear about his emotions. Touya isn’t selfish, at least not yet. Though, I have been wrong before.

On the aesthetic level, I like the little “thought texts” that pop up every now and then. Animation quality took a down turn from the first episode. And there wasn’t a “true opening”.

RATING: 8/10





Seto no Hanayome OVA – Jin

9 11 2008

Thoughts

As a heads up, I’ll be referring the the individual SnH OVA episodes by their disc name… in this case, Jin.

It’s been over 6 months since I finished watching Seto no Hanayome. The clear thing I remember was just how fun the show was to watch.  It was probably the hardest I’ve laughed at any show.  Yes, the show uses crude humor, but unlike more crude humor shows, this one manages to stay clean, but at the same time outrageous.

The first half of the show was essentially a throwback to the entire series.  You had all the staples of the series: Gozabura trying to kill off Nagasumi, sailor-fuku Terminator, epic battles between two factions (in this case Luna’s slaves and delinquents) while Luna and San have a sing-off, and of course… NaGARsumi’s reappearance.  I recently watched the first episode of the new Hokuto no Ken series out of curiousity, so I got the entire Tei-oh = Ra-oh reference. This segment was on-the-whole exactly what people loved about SnH put into 15 mins.

The second half had a bit more of a story and introduced a new character, Sarutobi’s sister, Satori.  This segment was epic, and I couldn’t help but appreciate it.  Satori ended up being quite the interesting character with her tomboyish charm mixed with a young girl’s personality.  And, surprise surprise, there was actual development in Nagasumi and San’s relationship.  I liked the parody of Die Hard and Bruce Willis.

Overall, it was really good to have a new episode of Seto no Hanayome and that probably affected how much I liked this OVA.  I did notice some similarities to GONZOxAIC’s newer series, Special A, that I didn’t notice before.  

RATING: 8/10





To Aru Majutsu no Index – Episode 03

20 10 2008

Thoughts

So after spending a week contemplating between this, Mouryou no Hako, and Tytania.  I decided to blog this series in place of Xamdou during its hiatus.

Before I start talking about the episode itself, let me make a few things clear regarding the series.  I think this is one of the best non-sequel shows of the fall season.  If Toradora! is winning for best comedy, then this is winning for best drama/action-series.  Episode two had amazing animation coupled with heart pounding action.  Not to mention the lead character is GAR.

As for episode three, the really good shounen actions series never have plot for an excuse for action (except for Gurren Lagann).  To Aru Majutsu is no different.  For every action centric-episode you have to be able to move the plot forward.  This episode clarified some critical things and further explained to us what magic (in this series) is.

The thing that makes this show shine is the characters. I have yet to see a flat character or one I didn’t like.  I’m not going to spoil the manga, but even the “villains” have sympathetic qualities.  The latter part of this episode really put a spotlight on Touma’s growing friendship with Index, and showed just how close the two had become after the past incident.  And considering Touma’s personality, he’s gonna stop at nothing to make sure that Index will be safe.

Now we need is for Mikoto to become a bigger part of the story and everything is perfect =D

RATING: 8.5/10





World Destruction – Episode 02

17 07 2008

SUMMARY

Kiryie, Morte, and Toppi run out of fuel in the middle of the sand-ocean and get attacked by a passing World Salvation Committee battleship.  They jump off the ship before some torpedos can get hit them.  In the aftermath, The WSC (World Salvation Committee) cannot find any signs of them.

While unconscious, Kiryie witnesses a funeral in his dreams.  At the funeral, he spots Morte who is crying.  When he wakes up, he finds himself on a unknown ship.  As it turns out, a transport ship spots the explosion that the WDC (World Destruction Committee) was involved in, and saves them as they were drifting.  The ship’s captain explains that he doesn’t care that they are a part of the WDC, as long as they are willing to pay for the journey.  Toppi pays a small amount, but enough for them to get to a Pleasure ship that the transport ship is heading towards.  The captain explains that the Pleasure Ship would be the perfect place for the outlaws to reside.

When they get to the pleasure ship, the WDC gets off.  As they’re walking through the ship, a young beast-girl pickpockets the Destruct Core off of Morte, but Morte doesn’t notice.  In the meanwhile, Lia and Naja of the WSC board the Pleasure ship and begin a search for the WDC.  Morte goes off and starts gambling, while Toppi and Kiryie has a meal and discuss why they’re following Morte.

Naja and Lia spot Morte, but instead of forcibly apprehending her, Naja decides to play with her a little and joins her in a high stakes card game.  Kiryie and Toppi are spotted by the other WSC members and try to flee them.  Morte eventually loses all her money in the card game, but Naja insists that they keep playing, this time with the Destruct Core at stake.  Morte is initialy shocked that Naja knows about the Destruct Core, but soon realizes that he is a part of the WSC.  Morte is even more shocked when she realizes that her Destruct Core has been swiped for a can of sand-whale.  Before the hand can begin, the pickpocket girl runs to the ship’s captain (who has been watching the card game) and demands her father’s release from debt.  When asked about the payment, she offers the Destruct Core.

Upon realizing that the Destruct Core is not in Morte’s possesion, a full fight breaks out.  Lia transforms into her beast form and fights Morte.  In the meanwhile, Toppi and Kiryie make their way to the same room as everyone else.  Toppi saves the girl from being captured, and Destruct Core makes its way to Kiryie’s hand.  Lia proceeds to attack him but stops short, and starts blushing when she gets a better look at his face.  Morte quickly creates a distraction by dropping the chandelier and the WDC gets away.

On lad, Morte offers to leave Toppi and Kiryie alone, but they end up choosing to follow her nonetheless.

THOUGHTS

Well I still love the voices and the characters… but that episode was… boring.   There were quite a few impracticalities in this episode, namely falling in love while attacking. That aside, this really was an episode that I didn’t like, nor did I hate.  The new characters look to be interesting, but not enough was said about them.

I’m still curious as to whether they’ll actually destroy the world, cause if they do, that’ll be something new.

For the time being, I might drop blogging this in favor of BONES’ New show Bonen no Xamdou (Eng. Xam’d: Lost Memories), if 1) new episodes air weekly,  and 2) someone subs them.

7/10 (Boring episode)





Kurogane no Linebarrels – Episode 01

8 07 2008

Summary

Hayase Kouichi is a high school student who always gets bullied.  And much to his displeasure, his friends always saves him.  Upset that his friends always saves him, he says that didn’t mind doing the bully’s task.  In this case, it was going to a bakery in town, and making it back before the lunch period was over.  When his friends (the ones who save him) inquire about why he accepted the menial task, it is revealed that he has a really bad inferiority complex, to the point when he considers himself a “hero of justice” (Death Note anyone?).

While this is happening, a large meteor is falling towards earth.  A government agency is tracking it and continuously refers to it as a MACHINA.  The dispatch two teams to set up at two suspected impact points.  However, as it the MACHINA descending into the atmosphere, it gets hit by a missle.  While the missle isn’t enough to destroy the MACHINA, it is enough to change it’s course so that it would land somewhere else.  Government agency panics and trys to find the new landing location.

Back to Kouichi, in order to make it back in time, he decides to cut through the shrines instead of taking the main road.  It just so happens that the MACHINA was aiming for the same shrine.  Kouichi falls off his bike after hitting root.  Before he can recover and keep biking, the MACHINA lands on him.

When he comes to, he finds himself completely intact, and sitting next to a naked woman, and a giant robot looming above him.  He takes the naked woman (clothing her with  his jacket), and runs away. At school, his friends are starting to get worried as to whether Kouichi is alright.  One of the decides to go out and look for him.

Kouichi is biking back to his house when the woman wakes up.  She has no memory of her past, not even a recollection of her name.  At Kouichi’s house, he asks the woman to borrow his sister’s clothes.

In the meantime, the agency that fired the missile (that hit the MACHINA) sends various mechs to Kouichi’s town in order to find the MACHINA.  In order to draw it out, they start attacking civilians.  Kouichi sees this, and takes the woman and starts to run away.  However, the woman starts pulling Kouichi in the other direction, towards the robots.  Shes says that she has a feeling that she needs to go to where the robots are.

On their way, they bump into Kouichi’s friend.  Realizing their situation, Kouichi’s friend grabs the girl and starts to run away, Kouichi close behind.  During this time, one of the mechs fires a stray shot that hits a wall right next to Kouichi.  A large chunk of the wall starts to fall down on the three of them.  Kouichi’s friend instinctively jumps ahead and holds the wall up with his back.  In obvious pain, the friend pleas Kouichi to take the woman and run away.  In frustration, Kouichi punches the wall that his friend is holding up.  Unexpectedly, his punch was powerful enough to shatter the wall.

Everyone is amazed at this.  Suddenly, the woman remembers her name and purpose.  Her name is Emi Kizaki and she asks Kouichi if he wants to have the power to fight against the terrorist robots.  When he says yes, Emi has Kouichi call down “Linebarrel” the same MACHINA that everyone is after.  When he calls it, Linebarrel falls from the sky.  Emi and Kouichi board it and start to fight.

During their fight w/ the terrorist mechs, Kouichi is constantly screaming about how he is the hero of justice, and how Linebarrel is his tool to execute justice.  After sufficiently pwning the terrorists, the terrorists retreat.  Kouichi talks with Emi about how all his life he wanted to have to power to fight injustice.  Emi replies that Kouichi’s life is already over.

Thoughts

Well, THAT was interesting…  I’m slightly mixed when it comes to the review.  Kouichi comes off as more of douche then he did in the manga.  While in the manga, he was a power-hungry douche, in the anime, he was more like Light Yagami.  Speaking of the manga, the anime sufficiently deviates from it, to the point where it’s essentially original material.

CON? the music was uninspiring, it never added tension.  The music director could pick some tips from Macross F and try to hire a better orchestra.  The CGI is meh… but I guess it isn’t the worst I’ve seen.

PRO? The director mentioned after the screening that KnL doesn’t stay as a Code Geass ripoff, rather, it will change at around the halfway point to more of a mecha anime.  Besides that, I did like the mecha design, it looked EPIC.

So what about it so far? As I’ve mentioned, it’s essentially a Code Geass ripoff.  A beautiful/mysterious girl gives a boy some power.  The boy goes off an starts using to fight a greater cause (Brittania in CG, and “injustice” in KnL).

The show definitely isn’t on my fall priority list anymore, but I’ll keep checking it out to see what happens to the story.

7/10