Archive for May, 2017

Saga of Tanya begins

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2017

She may be evil or whatever, but she is absolutely out of this world hilarious. I did not laugh this much since… I dunno… Muteki Kanban Musume maybe? Why did nobody tell me sooner! Well, Mauser tried, but even so, this was completely unexpected. I thought it was going to be something like Grave of the Fireflies or Figure 17, but nope, we left the stolid, old-school drama way behind. God be praised for the shining world of LNs that is upon us! And it’s not only watching the syziphean struggles of the hapless MC that is hilarious. Everyone contributes to Youjo Senki, from the military brass to the crazy inventor guy. And dat Serebryakoff, she’s gunning for the Best Girl of comedy, fo real. Too bad we’re not likely to see more of her, poor thing!

Oh, and those SIG Mondragons look as if they jumped off a Forgotten Weapons video.

P.S. This may be spoiling a little, but I just can’t help noting a couple of things about Serebryakoff. Hopefully this does not ruin someone’s enjoyment!

First, the creators started off strongly with her by planting a massive flag. It immediately reminded me about a talk I heard on Japan-a-Radio 10 years ago, when they discussed Elfen Lied. One of the podcasters said, in effect, that it opens with showing us a character of a secretary, and spends a short time on building her up. She is clumsy, but doing her job, etc. You can’t help feeling a little sympathy for her. Then, *wham*, they blow her head off. I was sure that Serebryakoff auditioned for a similar role in ep.1. Just look at the droopy eyes of her character design. But they double-crossed me, cunning bastiges!

Second, Serebryakoff is a supremely stereotypical tryhard idiot, yet a quality one. I already mentioned her design. Moreover, one would think that if you face someone who might be looking for an excuse to massacre you, it’s better to keep your lips zipped. Nope, she blurts it all out! When the climax of the confrontation is over, too! What really gets me is the hidden subtlety of it all. In a mediocre comedy show, she would be an inept sidekick that ruins the best plans, by interpreting instructins too literally or whatnot. But not here.

SukaSuka begins

Sunday, May 21st, 2017

I would probably not pick this up without Evurus’ tepid approval. But it was okay so far.

Unfortunately, I cannot enjoy it without reservations either. The massive yiff is cringeworthy. Presumably, the furry factor is there to masquerade or balance the shapeless blobs, which otherwise would stand out too much, but are necessary for some plot twist. The dude has ridiculously convenient superpowers. The world creation is so dumb, that, for example, it features floating islands. They may be organic in a romp like Dog Days, but not in a story with heavyweight pretensions. In general, although I don’t have a good evidence, the environment feels artificially manufactured to support a certain idea, that is to say the living weapons, and then railroad everything to a emotional impact. Watching SukaSuka, characters appear manipulated (to feel something), and then the viewer is too. Maybe emotional manhandling was less obnoxious in the original LN.

On the upside, the story itself is not that bad, heartful, just suffers from unnecessary veneer.

UPDATE: Omo considers that “the setting is really the shining part of the show”. Clearly he is not irritated by all the artificially convenient circumstances, or furries. But then again, many people enjoy the Superman franchize, where the dude is even more overpowered.

By the way, YuuYuuYuu had a similar core idea, but, alas, there wasn’t any romance there, except in the heads of yuritards. The author of SukaSuka LN deserves props for taking it head-on.

Elf Yamada in Eromanga-sensei manga and anime, ter

Sunday, May 14th, 2017

Sorry, I lied. But the gag was irresistible.

Two things though.

Does anyone notice that Eromanga-sensei is taking upon shounen themes? It’s a competition after competition, and the Sorting Algorithm of Evil. I can’t tell if I watch Yowamushi Pedal or Nodame here. Masamune also befriends his defeated enemies like Nanoha.

And what’s up with the animation? First they blew the budget so much. Next, they had to substitute a pan shot. Consistency, please. Someone in the production team should watch Shirobako!

UPDATE: Zane at Rabujoi:

Yamada, who is surprisingly not the most irritating girl in the show, and has grown quite a bit as a character in her last few episodes […]

“Surprisingly”?

Don on New York Times writing about anime

Friday, May 12th, 2017

Poor Don, having to read NYT:

Writer Glenn Kenny […] name-checks the movies Akira and Ghost in the Shell, thereby gaining negligible credibility as an otaku. He plainly knows nothing about anime series, which comprise the vast majority of Crunchyroll’s offerings, and he can’t be bothered to do minimal research. Of all the series, excellent and lousy, that Crunchyroll streams, the only one he mentions is Akashic Records of Bastard Magical Instructor, one I had dropped in less than five minutes. I would guess he picked that one because it is in the top row of the “simulcasts” directory and features a character named “Glenn.”

I thought everyone knew these days that New York Times equals Fake News. But I guess not:

I never thought I’d be nostalgic for the irresponsible and wrongheaded Charles Solomon, but at least he knew something about Japanese animation.

Hey, let’s not get too hasty here.

Musaigen no Phantom World cancelled

Friday, May 5th, 2017

Think of me as turning into a Aroduc-like hater if you will, but I just cannot stomach Phantom World. It seems… dull. Production values are rather good, but absolutely nothing of interest is going on. And yes, I know that there’s some kind of plot thing happening by the end, but it was 10 episodes and nothing of any interest happened, not even in a slice-of-life sense. The monster of the week went downhill: each dumber than the previous one. Most never made any sense to begin with, pure convenience to showcase cast’s magic abilities. I didn’t see a debacle like that since Tamako Market. On second thought, a glance at the staff lists for the two series explains a lot.

UPDATE: Looks like I’m not the only animeblogger with a similar reaction. Steelbound:

Kyoto Animation was never failed so badly and so thoroughly as they did with Myriad Colors Phantom World.

That said, he faults “horrible, terrible characters” and the animation of fighting scenes. I’m not sure that either is a problem. Looked fine to me!