Here Comes “Another” One

July 31st, 2012 in Anime, Another, General Reviews by

A similar problem horror shows encounter is taking things away too soon. I remember when I saw “The Shining” for the first time. I had Jack Nicholson come on screen and I already knew he was nuts, so his slide into insanity was not only not a surprise, but had me wondering why it took so long for him to achieve it.

This show is creepy right from the get-go, so the slide into uncertainly is effectively removed. That only leaves us with what I refer to as the Death of the Week…but I get ahead of myself.

In 1972, at Yomiyama Middle School, in Class 3-3, there was an honors student who was good at sports, very popular among his peers and even the teachers were fond of. However, when Misaki suddenly died, the shocked class decided to carry on as if Misaki was still alive. However, when the class’s graduation photo was taken, they saw someone in the shot who should not have been there—Misaki. (Enter kettledrums and violins.)

We now fast-forward 26 years. Kōichi Sakakibara is going to school there, but starts off the year in the hospital, owing to a punctured lung. Just about to leave the hospital, he sees a strange girl wearing an eye patch, who descends to the basement of the hospital to ‘see someone’. But on that floor is the morgue. What gives?

As Koichi goes to school, things take a turn for the weird. He sees the girl again, but no one talks to her at all. It is as if she does not exist. Well, nature abhors a vacuum, so he starts to ask questions, but is told to “stop hanging out with something that doesn’t exist”. So, does this settle the issue? Did Freddy Kruger stop at one? (more…)

Fan Service Alert III – Maken-Ki OVA

July 27th, 2012 in Anime, Fan Service Alert, Maken-ki! Battling Venus by

I was afraid of this. It may be the new trends to deliver up pure fan service. Now, I may be jumping the gun with this one, as there has only been one episode, but it is a fan service delight of perversity and voyeurism.

It starts off with Haruko Amaya in her school uniform, which is too tight in the blouse and too short in the skirt, so it shows off her interesting assets (no, she does not look like what’s above, but you shan’t be disappointed.) She gives some song and dance about how it is best to remain in shape and proceeds to do sit-ups in her school uniform, so you can watch her Balcony shimmy and shudder with every hoist. We eventually change angle, so it could be gynecological review, as we can see that she wears coffee-colored pantyhose, which is still not dark enough to disguise that she wears blue-and-white striped underwear.

Then, she has the temerity to chide us for not paying attention to what she is doing. Oh, honey, I am paying FULL attention.

With sit-up done, we now shift to push ups, as they help build your upper…..arms! Wait, how can she do that with those two zeppelins in docking mode? No problem, she just goes all the way down and squashing them right against the floor. Now, I can’t do a decent push up, as I have something in the way! (more…)

Nothing To “Shiki” a Stick At

July 24th, 2012 in Anime, General Reviews, Shiki by

Horror has a big problem: balance. Show too little horror and people feel cheated. Show too much and they get turned off by the gore. Shiki tries this balancing act and it ultimately falls apart, but it did its best.

The story opens up in Sotoba, a rural village in the mountains, one of those ‘the road in is the road out’ type of town and everyone knows everyone and everything about everything. Another hot summer has descended and school has concluded for the break. Megumi Shimizu wants out of this place, longing for the bright lights and big city, perhapsTokyo, but she knows that is not going to happen, now or later.

She runs into the mysterious Kirishiki family, who has moved into the massive and impressive Kanemasa mansion that overlooks the town. Megumi disappears and later turns up dead, for no really apparent reason. She was anemic, but not enough to kill her.

Then slowly, ever so slowly, people are dying off. In a place where one or two deaths a year are expected, we are getting into one or two deaths a week. Is there an epidemic? Some kind of contagion?  An undefined disease?

The local doctor, Toshio Ozaki, who took over the clinic from his father, is baffled at what is going on and has no immediate answers. Not even the priest, Seishin Muroi, has an answer. Or does he? (more…)

The Awesomeness of Sankarea *spoiler free*

July 21st, 2012 in Anime, General Reviews, Sankarea by

Every season there is always for me this one great anime, for those who remember season before last, it was none other than Ano Natsu de Matteru. For this season that was none other than Sankarea, and I know this review is a bit late but.. oh look! a smileyface!  😉

The story revolves around Chihiro Furuya who has an obsession with zombies and dreams of having a zombie bride (to each own I suppose). He then has an encounter with the ever so popular Rea Sanka (see what they did there?… innovative right?). Whose life turns out to have its own fair share of problems. They begin talking and over time grew closer until her dad steps in, tradegy strikes and by a series of events she turns into a zombie. Aided by her new-found friend, Rea now struggles to live the life of an ordinary girl while battling her quickly rotting body.

The overall artwork was great and consistent throughout the show, there was hardly any spectacular scenery but I doubt that is going to bother anyone in the slightest. A point to note though, was that while there was quite a bit of fan service involved it was so meticulously intertwined into the plot that half the time you don’t even notice that you’re seeing a naked girl on your screen. (more…)

Golgo 13

July 18th, 2012 in Anime, General Reviews, Golgo 13 by

Do you like long walks on the beaches? Perhaps you relish the days when you can go skipping through town holding your partners hand?  Or possibly enjoying a fine evening while watching the sunset slowly descend across the horizon? Well, neither does professional assassin for hire Duke Togo a.k.a. Golgo 13.

A Living Weapon
What does the Mafia, FBI, CIA, MI6, British Intelligence, War Vets, Snipers, Paparazzi, and Professional Assassins all have in common with each other?  They ALL learned the hard way not to piss off Duke Togo.  If you have 3 million dollars and a problem that seems impossible to solve, then you’re in luck. Golgo 13 will take any job; from shooting out the violin strings on your arch nemesis during a solo ensemble, to snuffing out a human organ harvesting tycoon that lives in an impenetrable fortress.

Over The Top
Golgo 13 was created in 1969, with multiple movies (including two live-action films), Manga, OVA’s and series being produced over the decades.  In fact, Golgo 13 is the longest running Manga in publication to date.  The veteran’s anime club on the MAL website recommended this anime for me to watch.  I can’t say I’m disappointed either.  While this series isn’t recommended for younger audiences, adults may find it a bit more to their standards.  Golgo 13 is a world renowned assassin that is feared above all others due to the fact he has completed every single mission ever given to him.  Each episode is its own unique story that plays out like a 1980’s style TV series.  It almost reminds me of a more graphic and sinister version of the A-Team.  While some episodes of the series may seem a bit over the top to certain viewers; including one where Golgo has to break out of an island prison with a specific prisoner.  Other episodes have been described as “alarmingly accurate” by some of my fellow former military brethren.


“Murder”, She Said

July 15th, 2012 in Anime, General Reviews, Murder Princess by

There is often a complaint that anime is broken into two camps of female characters: the  shrinking violet girl and the tough as nails woman. The problem I have with the Toughie is that there is nothing ever soft about them. They are cold and hard and angular, although, for this show, it is a requirement.

Murder Princess” is about Princess Alita. Her father, the king of Forland, is killed in a coup, foisted by the country’s former leading scientist, Dr. Akamashi and his two robotic minions, Ana and Yuna. As dad dies, he sends out Alita to find her brother, Prince Kaito, who is leading a diplomatic excursion to another land.

As she tries to complete her mission, she falls off a cliff, pursued by evil forces, with the nortorious female bounty hunter, Falis, joining her in their descent into demise. This near-death experience causes them to switch bodies and Falis is able to dispatch some of the local nasties, along with HER two minions, Dominikov and Pete Armstrong, (the former is a kind of shikigami, the latter a strongman).

Alita begs of Falis to return to the castle and defeat the forces that have taken it, but Falis has more important things to do. There are castles to rob and noblemen to hold up and all kinds of treasures to plunder. However, in return for the services, Alita offers Falis her body and soul (now, whether you want to take this as a caliber of yaoi or mere servitude, that is up to you). (more…)

Code Geass Gaiden: Boukoku no Akito *spoiler alert!*

July 11th, 2012 in Anime, Code Geass Gaiden, General Reviews by

Spoilers for Code Geass and R2 throughout.

I’m going to be predictable and blog about my ever high hopes for the upcoming installment for Code Geass ;). There is much talk about Lelouch still being alive, and it gets confusing. I’m pretty sure the director himself has declared Lelouch is indeed dead, but don’t quote me on that. However, the fact that Lelouch is stabbed by his best friend, would pretty much be enough proof that Lelouch is dead. Then again, every fan of the show knows the very last scene leaves us with room for speculation. It also makes people like me crazy because I like all the ends to be tied up into a nice little package.

My opinion? I’m so glad you asked! Lelouch is dead.

I’m not exactly a gold mine of information when it comes to supporting this theory. C.C. is shown to be looking up at the sky and talking. Yes, she is happy so that leads some viewers to believe that is proof Lelouch has survived, but some time has passed since his death when that scene is shown. So because it acts like a sort of epilogue, we can say C.C. has moved on. As an immortal she is used to being alone. Some people believe that Lelouch is the man riding the carriage in the last scene and there are videos that show the man having a similar facial structure to Lelouch as well as Lelouch’s black hair. At first I thought they were hoax videos but according to this one, that was the original Japanese ending and not just a hoax.
After some research I’m starting to understand the people who assume Lelouch is alive. The code and the Geass elements to the series leave me admittedly confused at times. I’m watching season 1 for the third time and there are still parts that I am only just catching this time around. With all the different theories out there I still like to stick to my original belief. I like that Lelouch is dead because I think it gives the ending a much more profound impact and him still being alive is like a cop-out. Also, I’m a sadistic nut when it comes to stories. I’ve always liked dark, sad story lines better.

Another guess? The writers watched V for Vendetta one too many times.

I’ve heard more than one person say that this is a sequel to R2 and that they hope to see Lelouch in it. This is not the case. The new Code Geass installment is to air August 4th. It’s a 4 episode long OVA. According to the summary (more…)

There’s No “Fooly” Like an Old Fooly

July 9th, 2012 in Anime, Fooly Cooly (FLCL), General Reviews by


This is one wild and crazy show that needs multiple viewings to make certain that you can figure out what it all means. You may fail, but this is a show that keeps you on your toes.

The basic plot is about Naota Nandaba (he’s the one in blue at the bottom). He lives in Mabase, a suburb ofTokyo. The city scenery is dominated by the Medical Mechanica building, which looks like a giant flatiron and I mean GIANT. While standing on a bridge, talking with Mamimi Samejima (ex-girl friend of Naota’s older brother, the smoker at the far left), Haruko Haruhara bursts onto the scene,  running Naota over with her Vespa scooter, then giving him CPR and finally hitting him on the head with a blue vintage Rickenbacher 4001 left-handed electric bass guitar (that dead-center maniac).

This creates a horn on his head, from which later on, a robot emerges from it. Now, if that wasn’t bad enough, Haruhara turns up to be a live-in maid at his house, making an already bad situation even worse for him. And from there, things get progressively stranger. Yes, it DOES get progressively stranger.

Can one really codify the show and not give away huge chunks of the plotting?  I mean, it is only six episodes and it a show that requires a real intensity of watching, because if you miss something, you really miss something. And since it moves at this breakneck pacing, playing catch-up is something you really don’t want to do. (more…)

Kingdom First Impression

July 6th, 2012 in Anime, Kingdom by

Taking a play from an old ad campaign that use to run here in the states to discourage parents drug habits from having a transitioning influence on their kids; I can only start off by saying that I can imagine some unsuspecting adolescent quietly watching Kingdom in the comforts of his own room until his father busts in on him:

Dad: What are you doing!?
Son: *Startled* jumps up to hide the screen.
Dad: ANIME!  Who taught you to watch ANIME!?  TELL ME!

Kingdom Synopsis:

In the Warring States Period of ancient China (475-221 BCE), Shin and Hyou are war-orphans in the kingdom of Qin. They dream of one day proving themselves on the battlefield. One day, however, Hyou is taken to the palace by a minister. Winding up on the losing side of a power-struggle, Hyou manages to return to the village, barely alive. Shin then meets a boy who closely resembles Hyou, Ei Sei. For now he is the king of Qin; later he will become the emperor Shi Huangdi. (more…)