Evirus on Sabagebu

July 23rd, 2014 by Author

As tweeted:

You can tell Sabagebu is shoujo instead of a cute-girls-doing-cute-things show because all the girls are being total cunts to each other.

Having seen Kimi ni Todoke, I give him both +3, Funny and +3, Insightful.

For a more conventional take, see RABUJOI.

The quest for good sports anime

July 23rd, 2014 by Author

An off-hand comment by Nova how he boycotts sports anime reminded me about this: I had pretty poor record with it. Not that I boycott it strictly like Nova, but I never was enthusiastic about it and neglected the genre. It is high time for the neglect to be rectified. The recent failure of Yowamushi Pedal did nothing to dissuade me. However, identifying worthy candidates is a challenge. I heard good things about Ookiku Furikabutte, but it’s associated with thematic concerns. One-outs was nasty, dropped after some 4 or 5 episodes. The otherwise most excellent Chihayafuru failed on characters. I wish Attack Number One was easily available, but I don’t think it saw an R1 release. Besides, honestly, I prefer the break of the century anime to moldy classics. Currently I’m pinning sports hopes on Suzuka.

BTW, I already received the suggestion of Ginban Kaleidoscope from Nova’s trollolo co-blogger, JTFish (quoted in full from ANN because this):

Plot Summary: 16-year old Sakurano Tazusa is a Japanese figure ice-skater who considers herself to be worth $10 billion in beauty. While executing her moves in the Women’s Figure Skating Grand Prix, she stumbled and landed badly, hence resulting in her loss in the competition. At the same time, in the same city, a Canadian youth by the name of Pete Pumps was performing an air stunt when his plane crashes and he dies. Tazusa starts to hear a strange voices and realises that the Canadian ghost now resides in her body. After futile attempts to get rid of Pete, Tazusa decides to get accustomed to his presence and in the meantime, improve on her techniques in order to get selected for the Olympics.

Thanks, man. I know we can count on you.

Hadigirl minus

July 20th, 2014 by Author

I ran through all 10 available episodes, and a thought occured to me: why bother with all the somewhat slightly animated manga thing? Just scan manga, and have the cast read it aloud, voila.

Alas, it’s not so simple. Manga has speech balloons, which this quasi-animated manga thing does not. It does have balloon-less floating remarks, but that’s a very different look. Therefore, an existing manga has to be re-drawn. It is still cheaper than animating, I am sure, but not as straightforward. In addition, resolution of manga page allows for different forms, and many mangas have oddly shaped frames. Still, this seems like a viable art form. Maybe when Hiyao’s son succeeds in using computers to destroy anime, we could still have this.

Evirus on Chaika

July 19th, 2014 by Author

In a season’s summary:

Thankfully, Chaika succeeds wonderfully in its execution. The fights are consistently good, and the characters endearing enough to draw the viewer’s sympathy. One standout in particular, Fredrica, can attribute her character’s draw almost entirely to the way her veteran seiyuu plays her. Saito Chiwa exudes a perfect combination of bored petulance and trigger-happy glee as Fredrica, and hits all her marks while demonstrating how important timing is to comedy.

I’m extraordinarily pleased a second cour of Hitsugi no Chaika will begin this autumn. It’s been a lot of fun to watch, so I’m glad it will be back.

Extraordinarily, dawg.

BTW, I watched 3 episodes, but Chaika did not pull me in, and since I knew that it was incomplete (h/t RABUJOI), I had it postponed without blogging.

Kawai-sou ends

July 15th, 2014 by Author

And so, marathoned in 3 days, it ends so quickly: a series that I seriously meant to suspend in the beginning. Notes that I penciled at ep.1 dripped with scorn, like in “so, it’s a story of yet another fine young man thinking with his penis”. Suffering of poor Shiratori left me too deeply suspicious of this re-take.

Unfortunately, due to certain circumstances, I cannot engage into explanations what made the anime for me. Here’s a few unrelated observations, however.

Although I think the size was matching the pace, I had a recurring feeling that something was omitted. For example, in ep.7, Usa’s classmate comes to the complex to meet Mayumi, and… absolutely nothing happens. It looks as if parts were edited out. In the same time, they had a ton of filler, such as the whole neighbourhood loli thing.

There was a strange refrigeratior moment, in the finale. How does Mayumi know what Maemura said? Only Usa and Ritsu heard it said, I just don’t see either of them relating it.

So, despite the compact size, writing wasn’t at Haibane Renmei level.

The art, however, was outstanding. Creators have gone bananas at the eyes, in particular. And it’s not just my opinion (as @andrea_chii twittered, “one of the best parts of the show for me honestly lol”). The series may merit a Visual Retrospective post later.

Liked: Yes
Rewatch: Possible

GochiUsa ends

July 14th, 2014 by Author

It was all right, but overdone at times. Perhaps even way overdone, and at many times. I had to resort to fast-forward.

On the upside, nobody was as annoying as characters of Ichigo Mashimaro, and so I managed to finish the series. And then of course Rize is #1. Although, personally, I liked Aoyama-sensei the most, even so. How does it work.

Art and animation were pretty, and somehow in keeping with the nature of the setting. Lots of primary colors.

Liked: It’s a net win
Rewatch: No

Avatar on Kawai-sou

July 14th, 2014 by Author

Andy engages into pointed critique:

Kawai Complex: A fun main romance plot buried under a steaming pile of cliched secondary characters. By the time I had gotten to the end of this, for the meager payoff on offer, I’d slogged through episode after episode of masochist jokes, virgin jokes, slut jokes, evil-woman jokes, more masochist jokes, more virgin jokes, more slut jokes, more evil-woman jokes… they went on and on and there just wasn’t any cleverness or variety there. Frankly it’s a miracle I didn’t drop this and I darned well ought to have. I blame my susceptibility to cute girls who like books. [Emphasis mine — Author]

I think this is a telling illustration for the importance of one’s basic approach to any given series. First of all, if one expects to find side-splitting laugh in any given anime, he is going to be disappointed 80% of the time. Nichijou was a great example due to variety of its laughs: everyone liked something different and was left cold by the rest. So, what was lacking in cleverness and variety for one is going to hit the spot for the other. But beyond the humour, the question is, what is there to see in Kawai-sou? I took a ton of notes, but unfortunately what I extracted from it is unbloggable, except the praise for the art and animation.

UPDATE: Here’s Peter’s shot:

Bokura wa Minna Kawaisou is more enjoyable if you ignore the so-called love story and simply enjoy the dynamics of the people living in that house.

Pretty much what Tappan wrote, too: “[you] have to watch it for the jokes, not the romance”.

Meanwhile, Highway, writing for Metanorn, makes Andy’s point about “meager payoff” in a more tactful way by remarking “I could have used a bit more rabu-rabu”.

Bokura wa Minna Kawai-sou begins

July 13th, 2014 by Author

The first thing about Kawai-sou that I noticed was how astonishingly beautiful it was. The second thing I noticed was how Ritsu didn’t look like a woman. The third thing I noticed was a suspicious isomorphy between its supporting characters and that of Mahoraba. We have the same crazy novelist, a sexy drunkard girl, the evil girl. Not everyone matches, but those who do are too exact.

One good thing, their Tama was nowhere as powerful, so she’s not consequential, and therefore I found her much easier to tolerate.

Date A Live cast

July 11th, 2014 by Author

Went to ANN to check who voiced “Princess” (CV: Marina Inoue), and suddenly found that they cast Kotono Mitsuishi.

UPDATE: Sadly, I had to explain this. Obi-Wan is saying: “Now that’s a name I haven’t heard in a long time. A long time.”

Hadigirl begins

July 10th, 2014 by Author

Hadigirl opened to non-subscribers at Crunchyroll, so I took a sample. The first thing about it: it’s not an anime. Instead, it’s a slightly-animated manga… with Aya Hirano’s voice. Seiyuu are sure cheap nowadays.

Overall it’s horrible, but it’s so adorably bad that I cannot bring myself to drop it out of pure pity. It’s like some Katawa Koneko of anime (or manga, really).

Also: I sort of wish the lead of Hadigirl starred in Kimi ni Todoke. It would make for a better show, I think.