Archive for August, 2010

Mitsudomoe continuation

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

ANN reports (h/t Thomas by e-mail):

Kubo indicated in the comment section of his Tuesday entry in mixi that Mitsudomoe will run for one kūru (one quarter of a year), go on hiatus for another kūru, and then run again for a second kūru.

Does anyone not know what a cour is? Or how to spell it? Anyway, apparently Mitsu was successful enough in Japan to get an extension.

Comments:

<hikago> oh LOL: “kūru ” instead of “cour”
<hikago> hahahaha
<zaitcev> hikago: I thought it was amusing that ANN were ignorant about “cour” being used by media professionals in the U.S.
<zaitcev> If it were 4chan slang, I would defer to ANN, but it’s not.
<hikago> @zait: yeah, or they failed to make a simple connection

IKnight is back

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

When Russians say “leave like a Brit”, they mean “without good-byes”. IKnight is a true Brit, then. His last posting was just a bit over a year ago. Now he’s back without any unnecessary messaging. The revival was not entirely unexpected, as he was leaving comments recently.

Oh Edo Rocket ends

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Seeing Oh Edo Rocket, I was suddenly ashamed to watch crass, poorly made stuff like Strike Witches and Ookami-san [1]. OER is a living proof that well-made, thoughtful anime does not have to be a sleep-inducing festival of pretentiouseness (like Mushishi, for example). And what qualifies OER as well-made the most is its villains.

Geriatric animebloggers tried to theorise around what makes a serviceable villain before. In terms of the villain section in the Chizumatic FAQ, OER does absolutely amazing job at #5. Personally I was particularly impressed with the balance, because all too often anime makes me root for wrong side badly. Akai’s heinous crimes weren’t letting that happen.

By the way, the story end leaves a lot of side characters dangling, e.g. Gin goes away again. Or more importantly, how stable is O-Nui? It would suck a lot if she were to devolve. But it’s all right, because that’s how stories overlap in life, and the main story has ran to completion.

Liked: Very
Rewatch: Quite likely

P.S. Forgot to mention playback issues with the streaming. ANN is a total loss across the board. Hulu is dependable, but is getting seriously overloaded with ads, G4 style. Youtube is generally ok, except that ep.19 was pure madness. No idea how the server and/or the stream makes Flash misbehave this way, but it was bad. My suggestion to everyone: don’t repeat my mistakes, do not try to tough it out with “legal” streaming, torrent the series and buy DVDs when they come out. The dumbest thing about my way is that I decided to buy a set anyhow, so I suffered streaming for nothing.

[1] Strictly speaking, Mitsudumoe was what I thought about here. The problem is, it’s not “poorly made”. It’s only less-well made.

Kokidokom is down

Monday, August 30th, 2010

Bluehost suspended kokidokom.net today, and with it went Simplicity, Anime Princess, Hey Say Anime, Anime^2, and Metanorn. Disasters like this are inevitable for second-degree re-hosting (anyone remember Riex Randall forgetting to register Dasaku’s previos domain?). Certainly getting in bed with Bluehost – the same jerks who took down Hinano’s blog – was quite unwise. But even with the best management, Animeblogger’s turn is in the future somewhere. I even think that larger outfits like Mee.nu may one day break (in case of Meenuvia, if anything happens to Pixy). And even WordPress is not immune, from, say, The Feds.

UPDATE: Nova has some logs.

Ironically, the Mitsudomoe 09 post at the new RandomC includes a flash player. Maestro would not stand for that, but Divine is on his own now.

Maid cookies

Monday, August 30th, 2010

One of my birthday presents was a box of cookies, illustrated by Aoi Nishimata:

That name sure sounded familiar (Sankaku NSFW).

Mitsudomoe 09

Sunday, August 29th, 2010

While watching, I compared Mitsuba and Futaba to Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton. It was an exaggeration, naturally, but I think a permissible one. It was a neat segment.

This may be a good time to admit that starting some time around episode 5 or 6, I began practicing fast-forwaring over segments that did not tickle my fancy. In this case, the pantsu part. That said, the bowling on ice was so terrible that I could not take my eyes off it. BTW, it included a piece of exposition — apparently Saito is a center-forward (of “striker”). That would explain that trio of creepy and sparkly admirers.

UPDATE: Kuro says:

Underneath that bossy, cruel exterior, just lies a real softie at heart. Gotta say, this section was one of the best I’ve seen so far of the series.

Actually, That’s The Joke. It was shown as early as ep.02, behold:

And then she realizes that she just was kind to people in public and gets flustered (although the usual punchline was omitted in case of the oil drum).

Funi’s well-hidden treasures

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

Calaggie twittered that Funi posted Furuba to Hulu. My search for it on Youtube proved fruitless, so I guess it’s not there. Oh Edo Rocket is definitely there though. It is not in the list of Funi’s “shows”, but it can be found if one searches among 2600+ “uploads”. I am coming up to ep.9 right now.

Mitsudomoe 08

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010

The time has come for me to break sharply with Aroduc regarding an episode of Mitsudomoe, even if for one segment only — the 4th one. His take:

[08] was absolutely killed by a truly godawful fourth part.

And that is because:

And the last part was 50% insert song and stills of Futaba and Random Kid #123119 with just a joke that Futaba drew his mom with giant breasts. If you didn’t see that one coming, you need your head examined.

I admit, my scribble was not enthusiastic about pan-over-stills either: “The shota segment – I appreciate the musical insert, but stills are just horrible. Otherwise, pretty nice.” The point here is that the horrible stills were not the only thing. In particular the insert song is no worse than chart-topping K-ON inserts. As for the breast joke, bah humbug, IMHO.

In addition, although this does not matter much, Aroduc was wrong about Hitoha drawing breasts. First, his own auto-capper saved a screencap where the boy is already on the top of picture with no breasts, about to fall asleep. Futaba is about to drop nearby too, so she could not possibly draw them. Second, the art style is notably different between the head and the chest — and I am sure it was done on purpose. Two older boys drew the chest.

But as I said, the main thing about the 4th segment is the ode to joy of sorts, and not the breast joke. You have to have a heart of stone to think otherwise.

Sankaku translates Akamatsu

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010

I am going to give a full-quote treatment to the post at Sankaku Complex (always NSFW) (via) that translates remarks by Ken Akamatsu, the mangaka behind Love Hina and Negima:

Certainly, the moe boom is finished, and from last year on I think we’re seeing the following phenomena:

1. Male protagonists are absent

Many anime are now nothing but girls, and the role of the “male character being excited by female characters for viewers to empathise with” has disappeared.

2. Male buying power has reduced

Now women buyers of both anime and manga are predominant. Oricon comic rankings show most of the top titles are women-oriented.

3. Male viewers can now empathise with female characters

The number of male fans who simply don’t view female characters as objects of sexual desire at all is increasing, even in titles like “K-ON!”. No more are they just thinking “I want to be part of that circle,” now they are getting into the characters themselves.

A friend of mine was saying “this will be the year of yuri!” thanks to number 3, but unfortunately I get the feeling the popularity of yuri is not quite that great…

Question of loli vs. yuri aside, it is noticeable that themes ebb and vane in anime, the most suffering right now is the giant robot.

BTW, our esteemed friend of yuritads everywhere did actually write “残念ながら” (“zannen nagara”, or “unfortunately”):

私が「今年は百合が流行る」と知り合いに主張していたのは(3)のせいで、しかし残念ながら「それほど流行っているわけでもない」感じです。m(_ _)m

One thing that concerns me here is what programmers know as “do a ESR” or “ESR syndrome” (after Eric S. Raymond). It means that once you stop hacking and start writing about “trends”, you degenerate into a blowhard (and a hello to Paul Graham too, who fights it valiantly). Akamatsu at least continues to draw Negima so hopefuly he’s immune do such deprofessionalization, but if an animeblogger were posting blog entires like that it would be worrisome indeed.

The curse of ep.7

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

In the comments (not body) of the post at Chizumatic Steven writes that AsoIku 07 has severily tried his patience:

I’m having a strange reaction today: I don’t want to watch the rest of this episode. [..] Last night I thought I’d pounce on it first thing this morning, but it’s the afternoon and I don’t want to watch it.

Thinking about it, I remember that I wanted to quit Toradora after ep.7 and Sekirei after ep.7 as well. That’s curiously coincidential. Of course there’s a fallacy of the long tail to consider: once I watch enough anime, some of them are bound to turn disappointing at similar times… And I think, for example, Gurren-Lagann and Lucky Star had crisis somewhere around ep.4. But either fortunately for the coincidence theory or unfortunately for my critical thinking, I tend to drop shows quickly and so even a couple of outright drops in or around 7 would create a hump… But then again, both Toradora and Sekirei survived theirs… Now I’m getting confused. Does this tell us that creators sometimes get tired mid-cour, or not?

FRIDGE: Being anal-retentive, I actually have hard data. I do not record survived crisises, but I saved the number of episodes watched for dropped shows.

After Anime series Count
0 Hayate no Gotoku bang-bang — 5 min, Eve no Jikan — 8 min, Futari Ecci — 11 minutes 3
1 Zettai Karen Children, Nogizaka, Index, Kannagi, Yoku Wakaru Gendai Mahou (seen all of ep.00), Kimikiss, Kobato, Tenshi no Konamaiki, Sola, Tales of Symphonia, Aoi and Mutsuki, Nerima Daikon Brothers, Kaleido Star, Mokke, Nanoha StrikerS, Nagasarete Airantou, Sora no Manimani, Popotan 18
2 Rumbling Hearts (Kimi ga Nozomu Eien), Taishou Yakyuu Musume, Kodocha, Pani-poni Dash, Black Lagoon, Clannad (1.5 actually), Minami-ke, Soul Eater, Gravion, Kyouran Kazoku Nikki, Shuffle, Moyashimon, Seitokai no Ichizon (discontiguous), Aoi Bungaku, Ookami-san 15
3 World of Narue, Piano, Juuden-chan, Strike Witches 2-ki, DearS, Ikki Tousen (orig.), Tayutama 7
4 School Rumble, Yumeria, Naruto Shippuuden (seen more), Ai yori Aoshi (seen more), Hyakko, Magic User’s Club, UFO Ultramaiden Valkirie 7
5 Macross Frontier (seen more), Mushishi, OMG TV, Precure (but completed Max Heart), Mahoromatic (approx.), Hand Maid May 6
6 Kare Kano, Sketchbook, Strike Witches, Nodame Paris-hen, Hanamaru Youchien (seen more), Mai HiME (approx.), Scrapped Princess (approx.), Planetes 8
7 Yoakena (Crescent Love) 1 LOL
8 Hidamari (orig.), Hidamari x365, iDOLM@ster Xenoglossia 3
9 Gokusen 1
10 Myself;Yourself, Saiunkoku Monogatari, Kimi ni Todoke 3
12 Dennou Coil 1
14 Twelve Kingdoms 1
136 Naruto 1

Although very few series are dropped exactly after 7, it looks like three’s a sharp drop-off in cancellations after 6 to 8.