Do not let the title of this show fool or throw you. Snow White with the Red Hair” (“Akagami no Shirayukihime”) only has the lead character share the name (and not really that); beyond this vague reference, she is her own woman. Shirayuki is a normal citizen of the kingdom of Tanbarun. Well, if you consider an herbalist ‘normal’; it is a rather rarified vocation. She has another unique feature: her red hair…which we already mentioned. When the first prince of Tanbarun, Raji Shenazard, orders her to become his concubine, rather than agreeing to this, she cuts her hair and escapes to the neighboring kingdom of Clarines. On her way there, she meets and befriends Prince Zen Wistalia and his two aides, Mitsuhide Lowen and Kiki Seiran (but obviously does not know this when they first meet).Continue reading

The problem with formulas is that, sooner or later, you are going to have to try ALL permutations, even if on the surface it sounds rather hard to accept or take in. With the harem high-school comedy Jitsu wa Watashi wa” (Actually, I am…”), we see a caliber of weird science.

This is a hard show to review, as you don’t want to tip things. I can safely say that all the ladies up there have a secret, but it works best if you left the show reveal it to you, rather than have me tell you that, like Kevin Spacey is Kaiser Sose (you haven’t seen “The Usual Suspects”? Ooops.)

We start off with Asahi Kuromine, a normal high school student who supposedly cannot keep a secret. His nickname is the Leaky Sieve. He finds his demeanor quickly challenged when he spots his classmate, Yōko Shiragami (green hair), in a classroom when school is over and done with. Ahh, but she has a secret (I have to tell this one, but I’ll leave the others intact, OK?)Continue reading

braves-of-the-six-flowers-review

Although this was a fascinating series, in its cat-and-mouse, whodunit approach, the first season (and yes, there HAS to be at least a second season) of “Rokka no Yuusha” (“Braves of the Six Flowers”) was ultimately frustrating, as it came off as a tremendous tease with immense padding. I’ll explain, so settle into your bean bag chair with a couple of boxes of Pocky and I’ll relate the whole saga (part one):

In this Land of Nod, there is a peninsula to the west, a land filled with demons and monsters and unsavory types (kind of like Donald Trump’s condo). Every so often, they get the itch and venture forth to try and kill and/or enslave the residents of the rest of this continent island. Fortunately, coming to the rescue are Six Braves, individuals who have been chosen by the Goddess of Fate, endowed with special powers and abilities to meet the enemy head on and drive them back into their land of volcanos, choking smoke and unpleasantness (Los Angeles without the Starbucks).Continue reading

Monster Musume-review

This is a harem comedy taken, potentially, to the zenith that it could go for. It is less about the fact that this guy has six ladies or 12 ladies or all the ladies in Kankakee chasing after him, but more as what they are. “Monster Musume” (“Everyday Life with Monster Girls” or, “Monsutā Musume no Iru Nichijō”), tells the very bizarre story of the very bizarre world that Kimihito Kurusu (Mr. Dazed and Confused up there) lives in.

After many, many years of vehement denials, the Japanese Government finally copped to the fact that these ‘monster girls’ exist. That revelation ‘occurred’ three years before the ‘start’ of the anime, brought forth by passing a legal bill, the “Interspecies Cultural Exchange Act”. Now, they are officially referred to as “liminals”, although some still call them ‘monsters’ (I prefer the term ‘exotics’, but that’s just me). Society is trying to mainstream them in, so there is no longer a culture shock when you see a dullahan walking down the street. Kimihito is a volunteer or a host family or patsy for one of them, Miia (redhead at one o’clock), who is a lamia (half human, half snake). About three to four feet of her is human; the rest (potentially a total of 30 feet) is her snake appendage.Continue reading

 

attack-on-titian-movie

I always have a concern when a movie comes out of a popular TV series, as I fear it will be a compilation of the series itself and nothing new from the show or potentially taking it in a different direction (as with the “Eden of the East” offerings). Now, there are a forest of problems with the “Attack on Titan” movies (yes, there are two of them; this is Part I). The first is, yup, this is merely a compilation film with about 21% new footage. This does help explain certain aspects better, but still comes off as too superficial, compared to the series, when we saw things unfold better. The second is that a lot of plot and motivation was jettisoned to make the film fit a time length and some of those parts that were cut out may have been necessary to the film to explain things better. Well, I only watch and review; what the hell do I know, right?

The third is that this might be a caliber of preparation for the live-action version of “Titan”, but what’s the reason for that? What can you do differently for live-action that you couldn’t do in anime? This seems more like corporate greed than anything else. The fourth problem is the most troublesome: who is it for? If I have seen the series (which I have), there is no reason to see a Cliff Notes® version of it in a movie, as a lot of the flavor is gone and that is what really sold the show. If I haven’t seen the series, then a lot of what the movie reveals will be taken from me if I choose to pursue the series in earnest after seeing the film.Continue reading

Nanatsu no Taizai ova 2

Usually when you see an OVA, it is a sign or a signal that the second season of a show is coming OR we are going to get the aria from everyone in the show. I mean, you could easily have these two-tripper segments for the whole cast of this show and end up with a 14-episode run, but it didn’t work out that way. We start off the “Nanatsu no Taizai” (“The Seven Deadly Sins”) OVA with Ban. Now, part of his ‘adventure’ is revealed in the run of the show, but it is detailed better in this approach. He is also the only one to get the full treatment/full episode for this OVA; the rest (the second offering) are akin to blackout sketches. Ban’s tale was a bit too fleeting and episodic for the regular run, but it still doesn’t explain how he ended up in that prison we see him in at the beginning of the series. Continue reading

It Wrong to Try to Pick up Girls in a Dungeon review

OK, this show has genuinely the longest title of an anime I have ever encountered. I saw it as “Is It Wrong to Try to Pick up Girls in a Dungeon?”(“Danjon ni Deai o Motomeru no wa Machigatteiru Darō ka”), but also known as “DanMachi” for short, and with English subtitle “Familia Myth”.  It is hard to classify this show, as it wants to be both dramatic and comedic and that doesn’t usually work out well for either approach. The initial idea is strange enough as it goes.

The story takes place in the fictional world of Orario whose main feature place is the Dungeon, which contains an assortment of monsters from goblins to dragons. Adventurers visit the dungeon to defeat monsters and take their shards (which look like crystals), and are used to craft magic items, among other treasures, and are also exchanged for the world’s currency. But this dungeon goes both up and down, so it is more like a huge tower (of which you see a bit of it in the back), plus those dangerous lower levels, where the aforementioned nasties reside.Continue reading

Movie Review - Trump “Card”  blog 154

Now, I have never seen anything regarding “Cardcaptor Sakura”, although I am aware that it is a CLAMP project, so that means it fits in to the other CLAMP worlds and that this Sakura is somehow related to the Sakura from “Tsubasa Chronicles”. (No, that’s OK; you do not have to outline the universe for me. It would probably wash over me, anyway.) I did want to see if I could watch this movie (“Cardcaptor Sakura: The Movie”, “Gekijōban Kādokyaputā Sakura”) with little to no understanding as to what it is about or what it all means. At best, it was a partial victory.

We open the film with Sakura Kinimoto, struggling to capture the Arrow Card, which she is able to seal, with a little help from her friends. That night, she has a strange dream about these ribbons that bind her and take her to see a very elegant Chinese lady (that is the woman up there and, yes, she is a degree of displeased). Sakura then magically wins a Winter Break trip to Hong Kong and she takes along Tomoyo Daidouji, her best friend and support team, her worthless brother Toya and his best friend Yukito Tsukishiro (whom Sakura has a crush on). Also coming along for the ride is Sakura’s guardian, Kero-chan (hanging on Sakura’s shoulder) and he is more than he seems, but for the film, he’s in that form.Continue reading

Silent but “Deadly”  blog 149

This is a show that I refer to as “We’re getting the band back together”, as it involves a sojourn of truth and having to find the necessary components to make it all work. Kind of like “Akatsuki no Yona”, but everyone knows everyone directly and not by inference. Such is “The Seven Deadly Sins” (“Nanatsu no Taizai”).

Ten years earlier, a group of knights known as the Seven Deadly Sins were disbanded after they supposedly plotted to overthrow the Liones Kingdom. Their defeat came at the hands of the Holy Knights, but rumors continued to persist that they were still alive. Now, the Holy Knights staged a coup d’état and captured the king, becoming the new, tyrannical rulers of the kingdom. Let me get this straight: you saved us from one type of tyrant to install yourself as another kind of tyrant. Nifty. The third princess, Elizabeth Lyonesse, (cutie pie to the far left) starts out on a journey to find the Seven Deadly Sins and enlist their help in taking back the kingdom.Continue reading

Northwest “Passage” blog 148

I was honestly not expecting a second season from this quarter, but we have “Mushi Shi: Next Passage”. For the first season, I felt they were just tales of the weird and of these odd creatures called Mushi. It wasn’t until the second season that I saw it for what it really was: a caliber of horror. But it is done in a deliberate way, and not relying on gore and dismemberment and other bloody tropes that bedevil many horror shows. Intellectual horror? That’s a good term.

Ginko is still wandering the countryside, trying to help people in regards with their Mushi issues and always working to expand overall knowledge of them. The opening credits show a variety of Mushi. Take note, as you will be seeing most of them throughout the season. This also had something that I never thought I would see: Ginko lose! One thing that bothered me throughout the season is that Ginko seemed surprised. Look, if he has been a Mushi master for 15 to 20 years (how old is he, anyway), nothing should come as a surprise. I will let you get away with “I have never encountered this before”, as it is a big world out there, but he should never be shocked or surprised or perplexed…except the episode where he loses (Episode 17 – “Azure Waters”).Continue reading