Rave: Loveless

October 31st, 2013 in Anime, Rants by

Ritsuka (dark hair) and Sobei (light hair.. but this rave isn’t really about him)

Loveless is just one of those anime I could watch/read a thousand times and never get tired of it; I absolutely adore it. I have spent hours of my time (which I don’t have a lot of anymore since school started) watching and reading this particular anime/manga combo. Loveless has slowly but surely taken over my heart. I suppose one could say that is a normal reaction for me seeing as I have I have said same with multiple anime but I am insisting still, that Loveless is a special case. It has secured its spot in my list of addictions (which includes One Piece, Naruto, Ouran High School Host Club, and a bazillion others) because it has taken the word “neko” to an entirely different level, it speaks the importance of keeping memories, and its characters left me spellbound.

Now you may be wondering what I mean’t by ‘it has taken the word “neko” to an entirely different level’. In the anime/manga all of the younger characters are cat people. Now I suppose you’re wondering why only ‘younger characters’… well it’s because they haven’t been in a “serious” relationship yet. In other words, they haven’t done anything promiscuous. (Thank God, seeing how the main young characters are twelve!). Most people don’t necessarily think of stuff like that when they decide to create a new manga. Normally it’s based off of one of the more popular topics like Giant fighting robots or zombies. It’s quite unique that they would put so much detail into such a topic. (more…)

Get a “Job”

October 29th, 2013 in Anime, General Reviews by


I have noticed, as of late, a trend in anime shows to have what I call the “Join a Club” movement. These are shows where the person in question is forced or compelled or enticed or blackmailed into joining a club or they will have to face some kind of dire wrath for their failure not to sign up (as you might end up in the Flower Arranging Club instead).

The “Good Job Club” tells the tale of Kyōya Shinomiya (that guy down there), who gets kidnapped by the club, as they are on the verge of losing their accreditation, owing to the problem that they do not have enough members. He makes it five and they can be saved. The sole purpose of the club is to do good deeds (or a ‘good job’) and help others, but it all seems to be observed more in the breach than in reality.

The other members of the club include:

Tamaki Kannazuki, green hair. She usually has a bag of chips with her and says she can eat anything and not get fat.
Megumi Amatsuka, with the tea pot. She is constantly making tea for everyone, but flips out if someone says she is gaining weight. (more…)

Not a “Ghost” of a Chance

October 27th, 2013 in Anime, General Reviews, Short Pull Series by


Yami Shibai: Japanese Ghost Stories” (also known as “Theater of Darkness”) is a short-pull series, as none of the episodes go over five minutes. For those who remember, this is more like “Night Gallery”, in which a short tale is told and there is some kind of ironic twist at the end, but something bad happens to the person in question.

This is a show with not only limited animation, but it is a caliber of stop-motion. This approach may be off-putting to some, as it really is an ‘economical’ approach to animation that may or may not work. The stories themselves may also be too brief to generate any real scares, not much different than tales around the campfire, done so I can make you drop your marshmallow into the flames.

It opens with a bunch of kids at a playground, but they are not playing. They are waiting. But waiting for whom? The ice cream man? The Octopus Ball woman? The friendly neighborhood dope peddler? Nope, it’s this guy on his bike, lugging his little shrine. The kids cluster around him and he tells another tale of terror and torment. (more…)

Industrial “Titan”

October 22nd, 2013 in Anime, Featured, General Reviews by


When I heard that this show had reached its coupler point, I line-jumped eight other reviews I had in front of it to get the news to you:

Attack on Titan” is the MUST-SEE anime of 2013.

Now, I do not allow myself to be overtaken with hyperbole and CAPITAL LETTERS to get your attention on what is out there. Many shows come out every year that are worthy of your attention, but “Titan” is head and shoulders above the rest (no pun intended). The last time I was this jazzed about an anime was “Death Note”, and they both share similarities, the biggest being that it cannot be pigeon-holed into what it is and must be experienced to see what the buzz is all about.

OK, enough of my drooling, mouth-panting excitement, let’s get down to brass tacks.

It is the year 845. For the past hundred years, giant humanoid creatures called Titans have forced humanity to retreat into a system of concentric walls known as Wall Maria (outermost), Wall Rosé, (middle), and Wall Sina (innermost). Inside these walls, humanity has lived in peace. These are massive walls, at least 50 meters tall and potentially 10 meters thick, maybe more. Mankind survives, but at what real cost? One day, they are attacked by a 60-meter Titan (as he can look over the wall to see what’s happening) and some armored-skinned Titan who breaches the wall and allows the other Titans to enter and attack. (more…)

Something Out of the “Ordinary”

October 20th, 2013 in Anime, General Reviews by


This starts out as an entry in the ‘nothing’ show category, as it is nothing more than a series of disconnected stories and tales that sometimes have no point, regaling in the strangeness that life has to offer.

When it was a manga, it was called “Regular Life”, but when it became an anime, it turned into “My Ordinary Life”, and is highly reminiscent of “Daily Life of High School Boys”, in that we see these events and you can watch the show out of order or miss an episode and you do not miss (that) much.

The tales are broken into two portions: school life and laboratory life. The school life segments involve Mai Minikami (Slot 1) who is very intelligent, but very quiet, Yuko Aioi (Slot 2) who is always forgetting to do her homework or forgetting to bring her homework if, by some rare confluence of time and space, she has managed to actually do it and Mio Naganohara (Slot 4) who is a manga artist, but doesn’t want people to know this. We see them go through the paces of being in school. The three of them have a caliber of relationship as was seen in “Kill Me, Baby” (minus the physical mayhem) but it is played for strangeness, as when Yuko is sent into the hall for not doing her homework and sees the vice-principal have a wrestling match with a deer that has come on campus. (more…)

The Thin “Red” Line

October 17th, 2013 in Anime, General Reviews by


OK, you should pronounce this show “Vivid Red Operation” and not run it all together to be “Vividred”, (despite how it is presented in the credits).

It is the future and this future works. On the island of Izu Oshima, Kenjiro Isshiki has invented the Manifestation Engine. This structure (which I cannot determine how big it is, but think of Three Mile Island in its design) is a power plant that powers THE WORLD! It pulls energy from the sky (shades of Tesla!) and distributes it around the planet. However, even in paradise, there are always snakes.

In this world, they are these strange creatures called The Alone (and why must they have such odd names? Have you noticed that? The Noise. Them. Harvest Beasts. Sheesh!) Anyway, it appears that the defense force of this island cannot fight against these creatures. Ahh, but Kenjiro, the classic mad scientist, has come up with the Vivid System, which allows people, who have the key and can get into the system, to fight these Alone (I mean, they are fighting the creatures, but they are not fighting alone. Well, initially she is fighting alone, but gets help so she is fighting Alone together. I mean, that is, what I want to say…….ah, forget it!) (more…)

“Alone” Again (Naturally)

October 13th, 2013 in Anime, General Reviews by


OK, I will admit that this was an experiment. I wanted to know if I could watch “Neon Genesis Evangelion 1.11: You Are (Not) Alone” with little to no knowledge of it, as I have not seen the TV series and know only what I have picked up over the years. Sure, I would be the first to admit that it makes little to no sense for me to watch a giant fighting robot movie, as most of the people who read my reviews are fully aware of my dislike of giant fighting robot shows (and having ripped a few of them apart here), but, I was at Anime Expo 2013 and the opportunity presented itself, so I was not going to let this slide past.

Since I had seen practically every other movie or show that was considered a landmark or major player in the anime game (“Akira”, “One Piece”, “Bleach”, “DBZ”, “Naruto”) and people were losing their minds over this particular offering, I felt that I should, at the very least, make a visit to see what all the noise was about. For me, it was much ado about nothing.

For those nine other people in the world who have never seen or heard of the show, it is the year 2015. Tokyo 3 stands, but most of the world’s population was destroyed after the Second Impact. Strange space beings, called Angels (and how ironic is that. Why not call them Devils? Anyone? Nope? I guess they all got destroyed in the Second Impact) are bent on the total, complete and thorough annihilation of the human race. The only thing that stands in their way is EVAs, the world’s answer to these alien invaders. (more…)

At a Loss for “Words”

October 11th, 2013 in Anime, General Reviews by


This was a movie that was shown at Anime Expo 2013, but I got shut out of the viewing for it. Part of the interest in the film was that Sentai Filmworks had a convention contest going on and this was one of the locations to get a “Words” sticker. Get the six stickers and you would win a prize (of a black t-shirt. Not too good in the blazing summer sun of Los Angeles).

As it turned out, I had an opportunity to catch “Garden of Words” in a different location. Not as good as the big screen, but I did get an idea as to what it is all about.

The first thing it is all about is less than an hour. That’s right; this film clocks in around 46 minutes, which really gives the feeling of incompleteness. And since it came from the same people who brought us “Children Who Chase Voices from Deep Below”, it also embraces the same problems as with that film, in that things are set up but are not really carried through to a conclusion. Perhaps they are making a statement that things are never really done, but life moves on, but this isn’t life. This is a film and we expect, nay, demand closure to some extent. (more…)

You Don’t Bring Me “Flowers”

October 3rd, 2013 in Anime, General Reviews by


This is a very black or white series. You will either love it or hate it, but you will never be uncertain about it.

Flowers of Evil” (or, as they call it, “Aku No Hana”) is doing things I rarely see in animation and I have never seen in anime. First, it is rotoscoped. For those who do not know what that is, you film live action, then animate it. “Through a Glass Darkly” was the last time you may have seen it (or not; it was a stinky film). What this means is that you have a more natural look, but the movements may come off as stiff or stilted, as you are not employing squash-and-stretch techniques of normal animation.

Second, because of the more natural look, standard anime tropes are gone. With the exception of one fantasy sequence, there is no turning to stone and crumbling away or sliding into chibi style or anger bars flashing at one’s forehead when things go wrong.

Third, the more natural look means the world is dirty and grimy and depressing, so there are chipped concrete blocks and cracked roads and torn posters and rusting signs and stained walls and weed growth. Certainly not crisp and clean, no caffeine, as you see in even the most action-adventure animes. (more…)

Hooked on a Feeling

October 1st, 2013 in Anime, General Reviews by


This is a strange show, in the fact that it openly embraces the strangeness and makes no apologies for it. Whether you wish to buy into it is wholly on you.

Tsuritama” is more than a show about fishing, although that what it may look like initially. But the fishing is more of a means to an end, as we draw these four very different people together.

Yuki Sanada (red hair) has moved to the island of Enoshima to be with his grandmother. She requires frequent relocating, which prevents Yuki from establishing any real friendships, much less the social skills necessary to initiate them. Whenever he becomes anxious, he freezes in place, unable to breathe, and he feels like he is drowning. Donning a markedly demonic expression, his anxiety becomes so pronounced that others become wary of him at his appearance. I mean, this guy looks like the absolute stinkiest smell has been presented to him. Even Freddy Kruger would recoil in fear. (more…)