Archive for the 'dennou coil' Category

Dennou Coil begins

Sunday, November 11th, 2007

Dennou Coil was recommended by many people, starting with my friend Joe (not an animeblogger, a catblogger). It was a while ago and I remember how unimpressive screenshots were: very basic art, bleak color key, computerized inserts. Now that I’ve seen it, I can say that the vicarious impression was true. The main thing I did not appreciate back then was how ghiblified characters were.

Still, it’s not bad at all. Maybe I should replace “basic” with “laconic”. The animation is artistic without undue exhuberance, inserts are kept to a minimum.

Overall Dennou Coil reminds me of Windy Tales, which sported beautiful yet rather sketchy art. Windy Tales also had an outstanding story in the first couple of episodes, which was abrubtly replaced with episodic shit. The analogy makes me apprehensive, but we’ll see.

UPDATE: In end of ep.04, Ureshii failed to identify and translate the name “michiko” that [main] Yuko saw in the corrupted data.

V.odd. Unfortunately, Dennou Coil is far too complex for me to take raw.

Omo completes ef

Monday, December 24th, 2007

Seen at Omo’s today:

Not long ago I finished the last episode of ef – a tale of memories. It’s by far the most impressive anime of 2007. Sadly that’s just my impression and not a lasting opinion tested with time, but it was hard to deny that ef was a gimmick intended to impress. Much like Zetsubo Sensei and Hidamari Sketch, ef is the product of SHAFT, the same studio and pretty close to the same production team.

I’m so envious of raw watchers. Currently I’m batching the last 3 episodes of ef to marathon it. But I’m pleased to know that ef’s ending went well with Michaelhim. Honestly, it was a concern (which is not gone completely yet, SDB loved ending of Vandread, I hated it, but I’m “cautiously optimistic”). Also:

In the case of Seirei no Moribito, it was honestly pre-licensed as the flagship show kicking off Production IG’s 10th anniversary (IG is already one badass animation studio in Japan, not to mention the show is based on an acclaimed novel series to as well). In the case for Dennou Coil, it’s a primetime NHK project with 8 years in the making and a lot of anticipation (and no hype!). It bugs the hell out of me simply because I see what’s so good about those two shows, yet neither manages to make me care about them very much; yet I can’t stop talking about crappy shows like these SHAFT offerings [ef, SZS, and Hidamari].

Indeed. And an ouch for Dennou Coil. I think I’ll complete it one day, maybe, when it’s on Netflix.

FRIDGE UPDATE: I think we can add Rocket Girls to the coveted list of crappy shows of 2007 which beat the pants of flagship productions as far as interesting their viewers. It’s the most fun and exciting show, where ef is most moving and touching. And it wasn’t made by SHAFT, so being interesting is not some special SHAFT magic. BTW, Omo knew about it.

Owen on Dennou Coil

Tuesday, January 8th, 2008

After reading what Owen wrote about Dennou Coil today, I feel inclined to agree, but his specific arguments seem lacking.

When I say that [Dennou Coil] bears similarity to [Haibane Renmei], I’m talking about how the conflict between the characters in the main arc are depicted. Isako’s determination to summon Michiko and open up portals to the Other Side wasn’t unlike Reki’s feather-dyeing and delaying of her Day of Flight; the two of them, aside from being in denial about their problems, are also running away from them. In the same vein, Yasako and Rakka are similar in the roles they play — not only are they protagonists new to their respective worlds, they also act as a foil to Isako and Reki, delivering them from their despair in a climatic finale.

When I made such comparisons, I was quick to point out that I realize how stretched they were, but Owen apparently wants to make them in all seriousness. I’m not saying Owen is there already, but by making more and more artificial analogies, one quickly retreats into Joseph Campbell territory of the meaningless.

Yet the same could be said of HR, which can still give any anime made in 2007 a run for its money thanks to its solid soundtrack and exquisite animation that doesn’t show its age.

“Exquisite animation”? The animation in Haibane was poor even in 2002. I didn’t save the worst parts to show here, but have a look at Kana chasing crows. Reki’s visit to the temple was farmed out to non-compliant interframers and thus dubious as well. I would say, ef imitated Haibane Renmei in the way its strong story overcame the lack in the animation department.

Contrary to what would be an almost unanimous groundswell of approval, it wasn’t the best of 2007 for me. At times it seemed to delve into intricate plot workings that would delight any Death Note fan in terms of an inter-connected meta-narrative, yet its greatest strength is also its downfall. For all of Code Geass’ shortcomings I’ve never had to read an elaborate outline of events in order to fully grasp the plot after I’ve watched it, and that’s how things should stay, with DC as the exception. I’ll keep my status quo and leave the reading of Cliffs Notes for Shakespeare, thank you.

Again, right sentiment, but directed at wrong target. Lain would deserve this treatment, but not Dennou Coil, because Dennou Coil has more than the convoluted plot to it. Heck, look at explanations SDB wrote about Vandread (of which the TMW is only a small part). Does anyone else watch Vandread for the tight plot? I wrote a character matrix for Azumanga, but I don’t think it reflects on the anime itself in any way. Similarly, Transientem’s work is only a fan work.

Dennou Coil has left me somewhat ambivalent too, but I’m still searching for the reasons which would be more persuasive than the above.

Starting in the middle

Monday, March 31st, 2008

Steven began to watch Ranma 1/2 from the Season 2, and it sure looked like fun. Now he’s buying Season 1 and 3.

This reminds me how I started watching Naruto from ep.32: it was awesome out of this world. And the next episode was known as Sakura Blossoms in English.

Yesterday Avatar said on #animedvd that he started Nanoha in the middle too, and most likely would not become such a fan if he had to start from the beginning.

Only three examples, but I wonder. Perhaps it’s a good way to approach long-running franchizes.

This is not to say you have to like it. We watched an episode of Dennou Coil at TV in the hotel, and Ana-sempai said it was “pretty, but creepy”, which I thought was apt for an episode with a flashback to a talking Illegal. Don swore off Naruto because one of his friends saw an episode where Hinata was beaten up savagely (I’ll provide link when I get back to America). Random selection does not always work to the show’s advantage. But it might help the correct judgement.

UPDATE: Could not find the relevant link in time, but here it is now:

Or, if you’re like me and spoilers don’t ruin a show for you, you could actually watch an episode or two of A’s -first-. Total accident – downloaded the wrong episodes, started watching, said, “Hey, this show is throwing a lot of characters at me like I should know who they are…” “You’re watching A’s, stupid.” “Ohhhhh…” With many shows, this would be a major turn-off; with Nanoha, it was something of an advantage, because the start to A’s is VERY strong, especially compared with the first season. But a little confusing, so ideally you should watch it the right way around.

Yeah.

Lupus on Dennou Coil

Thursday, April 3rd, 2008

Seen at the blog with an unfortunate name:

[] Suddenly we’re plunged into an almost Tom-Clancy-esque world where the lies and mysteries pile on, every organization and individual all have secret motives, and drama and betrayal leave potholes all over the landscape.

That is, in my opinion, the foremost flaw of this series. It is beyond jarring. The light hearted tone of the first half of the series is thrown out the window and completely forgotten in exchange for some drama that feels completely wrong and out of place for primary school students.

Frankly it was always obvious to me where the show was going, and it’s Lupus’s own fault if he allowed himself to be caught flat-footed by the faux ghibli veneer.

But aside from that, way to spoil. I happen to think that too many bloggers dance around too much, yet their efforts are futile. Jeff Lawson‘s no-spoiler policy comes in handy sometimes, but only because he is very strict about it, so I can visit his place in complete safety. But Steven, also on my favourite list, is neither consistent nor safe in application of his spoiler policies. The “spoiler tags” are a joke, and not just because rely on JavaScript, although that’s a part of the problem. It simply is impossible to discuss anything anime in a satisfactory way and not reveal anything spoiling. Jeff made his choice and he’s watery and oblique. Steven has made it too and he’s meaty and informative; it’s the high time he stopped pretending with the tags.

I’m in the spoiler camp. Go, Lupus, call it as you see it, and tell us why. Then we can disagree.

SDS on Dennou Coil

Sunday, February 8th, 2009

The post at OGIUE MAXIAX is an old news, but I meant to mark it as a perfect example of what a trained critic sees in Dennou Coil. Look at the big paragraph in the middle with “the storytelling is subtle without being excessively obtuse” and such.

Myself, I suddenly suspended it at ep.08, right after giving it accolades. Then, the watchings quietly continued at a rate of one episode in three months and crawled to the finish of ep.12, where Nanoha put an end to it. The nuclar war filler was retarded anyway, I fast-forwarded quite a bit.

This view, I guess, would bang me together with comment-polluting naysayers at OM (which is not that bad of a company, even Omo lifted a paw there), but it’s difficult to say if Dennou Coil itself was no good, or I just burned out in general. In any case, I’m not looking forward to R1 DVDs.

Dennou Coil

Saturday, February 20th, 2016

Unlike the previous forced completion, Dennou Coil did not envoke any strong emotions. It was okay. The disappointment originated in its original manifestation of intent: they promised a lot and fell short.

Animation quality was oddly poor in many places. It almost feels like they did it on purpose, aiming for a minimalist expressiveness, but failed. If we look at, say, Windy Tales, the art is even sketchier in there, yet it’s miles ahead in the artistry department.

The plot and the final explanation made sense, except I would prefer it unrolled more gradually instead of an Agata Christie style infodump in the last chapter. Still, better than Lain.

Liked: Yawn
Rewatch: No

P.S. I liked the epilogue with its changed color key.

P.P.S. Bloggers were absolutely gushing about this. Aziz, Don, Bateszi. “The usual complaints don’t apply to Dennou Coil”, my posterior!

P.P.P.S. I still think that the filler is inexcusable in a show like this.