“Blend” Into the Crowd

June 17th, 2021 in Anime, General Reviews, Uncategorized by

Another Japanese obsession I cannot wrap my noggin around is the theme café/maid café fetish. OK, I have never been to Japan and I don’t even do the Maid Cafes that pop up at anime conventions. It’s a bit of a culture clash for me. And though this show doesn’t define it any better for me, “Blend S” (“Burendo Esu”), was fun to watch. (more…)

“Ballroom” Dancing Made a Man of Me

June 10th, 2021 in Anime, General Reviews by

I caught this delightful entry at AX 17, where we were the first to see it, which also spurred me to eschew a couple of other offerings to take advantage of actual ballroom dancing classes at the Pony Canyon booth. Even if you know nothing about competitive ballroom dancing, this series, Bōrurūmu e Yōkoso”(“Welcome to the Ballroom”) will introduce you to it. Yes, the story is as old hat as it gets, but it is executed with a great deal of heart and vigor. (more…)

A New World “Record”

May 27th, 2021 in Anime, General Reviews by

One of the freedoms you get with doing an Alternate History/Universe series is that you are untethered by anything concrete in the real world to tell your tale. One drawback is that you may have to rely on pseudo geography and country names to help with your story. Thus is the conflict generated by “Shoukoku no Altair” (“Altair: A Record of Battles”). (more…)

Home “Made”

May 20th, 2021 in Anime, General Reviews by

Another trend that I am seeing is what I call the Cutely Brutal show. The artwork is more along a cartoony, slightly exaggerated approach, but the story itself is mean and cruel and vicious and horrific, so you have a difficult time reconciling the two. Such is the case of “Made in Abyss”. (more…)

Songs of the “Whales”

May 13th, 2021 in Anime, General Reviews by

This is one of those stories that drops you in the middle of things and tries to explain some aspects of this odd and strange life that you have encountered, but not explain too much, kind of like the lives that these people are leading. This is Kujira no Kora wa Sajō ni Utau”(“Whale Calves Sing on the Sand” or “Children of the Whales”.)
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Sneak “Attack”

May 6th, 2021 in Anime, General Reviews by

OK, if you did not know that there was going to be a second season of “Attack on Titan”, you go stand in the corner with the other two people in the world who got confused on this. The dramatic conclusion of the first season and the veritable ton of unanswered questions DEMANDED that there be a second go-around. Now, this felt more like an experimental season, complete with a huge amount of blind-side attacks and plot contortions that could have doomed other series. It doesn’t mean that this came out unscathed and the 12-episode run just added to the experimental nature of what is already a difficult show to follow. It is certainly more than the mere destruction of the titans, and, although the fight sequences do not disappoint, they can get a bit much. Now, let’s get down to brass tacks….. (more…)

Girls Will Be “Girls”

April 29th, 2021 in Anime, General Reviews, Uncategorized by

Do not let the rather casual, almost cartoon-like animation fool you; this is a rather cruel and heartless show. Shōjo Shūmatsu Ryokō”, (“Girls’ Last Tour”) tells the tale of Yuuri and Chito (left to right) as they navigate a massive city complex after some apocalyptic war has taken place. Driving their Kettenkrad (a kind of motorcycle half-track), they search for something, anything, to help them understand what went on and what is going on. (more…)

“In This Corner”….

April 15th, 2021 in Anime, General Reviews, Movies by

I feel that I will never understand the magnitude on the Japanese psyche regarding WWII and the dropping of the bombs. It permeates every fiber of their being and colors almost everything they do, consciously and unconsciously, even so many years after the events. We have another film that looks at the war experience, but it is done in a different manner. The inevitable comparisons between “Grave of the Fireflies” and this one, “In This Corner of the World” (“Kono Sekai no Katasumi ni”) will happen, as both are depressing, but the latter approaches it in a more hopeful, but less natural-looking, manner. (more…)

Here Comes the “Bride”

April 8th, 2021 in Anime, General Reviews by

I could have seen this at AX 17, but they mooked with the scheduling so it passed me by. I had to wait for it to come online to grab it. This is a caliber of lead-in to the series, as it is a three-part OVA. The series itself was released in 2018. This short-run talks about things after the dust has settled and everyone is more or less comfortable with one another. If the series is going to be like this offering, it is going to be both intriguing and restrained. This is “The Ancient Magus’ Bride: Those Awaiting a Star”. (more…)

The “Bane” of My Existence

April 1st, 2021 in Anime, General Reviews by

I wuz robbed! Someone call the anime police! What a crock of crap! Please excuse my histrionics, but never have I felt so cheated by a show as I was from “Kishin Houkou Demonbane”. It promised one thing but devolved into…mecha! I can’t stand mecha, but the fact they had to lie and cheat me into it is even worse. So why did I hang around for the full run? I’ll explain that in a bit, but first, the plot. Giant fighting robots! I mean…ahem! That is to say…. (more…)