Playing “Dress-Up”

November 29th, 2022 in Anime, General Reviews by

Cosplay is as ingrained into Japanese culture as is sake and pork cutlet bowls. Perhaps they feel they actually invented it, but they have certainly gone to great lengths to perfect it. It’s just that I do not personally recall a show that looks at cosplay in a mature manner; the people who do it are wholly, solely committed to it, especially in trying to pull off just the right look (which can be really hard if you take on someone like, say, Alphonse Elric) without mocking them. Thus, we have “My Dress-Up Darling” (“Sono Bisuku Dōru wa Koi o Suru”, or “That Bisque Doll Falls in Love”). (more…)

Breaking the “Ice”

November 24th, 2022 in Anime, General Reviews by

I often wonder why you would want to reboot a series, especially one that still has life in it. Perhaps you want to offer it to a new generation, who doesn’t have the time to see the original (kind of a weak argument). Perhaps you want to take it in another direction and free yourself from the past that YOU created (another weak argument). Perhaps you just want to make a profit from all this (another weak argument, but this one makes better sense). And so, we have “RBWY: Ice Queendom”. (more…)

She’s An “Ex” For a Reason

November 22nd, 2022 in Anime, General Reviews by

Romantic comedies are hard to pull off effectively, in that the combatants (for wont of a better term) need to be smart enough to understand why they do what they do, but just clueless enough to allow the events to unfold as they need to for the story to be told. It doesn’t always work, as when other parts are brought into the mix that may or may not complicate things, and that is how we get to “My Stepmom’s Daughter Is My Ex” (“Mamahaha no Tsurego ga Motokano datta, or “My Stepmom’s Daughter Is My Ex-Girlfriend”). (more…)

The “Gold” Standard

November 17th, 2022 in Anime, General Reviews by

I caught this at AX 22 and was intrigued by it, despite the over-the-top fan service and all that goes with it. It’s another offering in the Magical School genre and this follows the misadventures of a would-be magician and all that goes with it, so we have the short title, Vermeil in Gold” and its full title, Vermeil in Gold: The Failing Student and the Strongest Scourge Plunge Into the World of Magic” (“Kinsō no Verumeiyu: Gakeppuchi Majutsushi wa Saikyō no Yakusai to Mahō Sekai o Tsukisusumu”), and all that goes with it. (more…)

I’ll Follow the “Sun”

November 15th, 2022 in Anime, General Reviews by

There are some absolutely brutal animes out there: “Berserk”, “Elfin Lied”, “Gantz”, “Deadman Wonderland” and “Redo of Healer”, to name a few. But the artwork supported the notion that it was going to be a bumpy ride. But what if you have an anime that is equally as brutal, but the artwork lulls you into a false notion as to what is lurking out there? Such is the case with “Made in Abyss” (“Meido in Abisu”). And after the first season and the three-movie arc, we now have the second season, with the multi-worded title “The Golden City of the Scorching Sun” (“Retsujitsu no Ougonkyou”).
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“Duke” It Out

November 10th, 2022 in Anime, General Reviews by

Romantic comedy covers a huge amount of territory, but it usually is the same thought process: a guy really, really likes a girl, but doesn’t know how to say it or express it or convey it without looking like a fool doing so and, thus, tarnishing his image in her eyes (OK, I will be speaking from a guy-to-gal approach; I know it can happen in the opposite direction as well). Meanwhile, the object of their affection is (usually) well aware of their feelings, but they do not want to make it easy for them and saying it for them. YOU have to convey it, OK, as it commits you to the relationship. But what if death is part of the equation? That brings us to “The Duke of Death and His Maid” (“Shinigami Botchan to Kuro Meido”).

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Watch the “Birdie”

November 8th, 2022 in Anime, General Reviews by

OK, as you know, sports anime are my second least-liked genre (Giant Fighting Robots still have a commanding lead). It’s just the arc traveled in these shows is always the same: a person either a) loved the game and left it for a variety of reasons or b) want to make a name for themseves IN the sport. Through a series of events and happenstance, they are able to c) forge a comeback or d) establish themselves as a force to be reckoned with. And unless it is an unusual sport not normally covered in anime (tank battles, sumo wrestling, cornholing, whatever), I’ll take a pass. The object of our scrutiny for this one is sometimes not even considered a sport, golf, but I ended up on the green with “Birdie Wing: Golf Girls’ Story.” (more…)

“Wise” Too Late

November 3rd, 2022 in Anime, General Reviews by

Is this another anime trend I see before me? Now, gender change comedies have been with us since the Greeks took ink to paper (or whatever they wrote on). We can discuss “Some Like it Hot”, “Victor/Victoria”, “The Hot Chick” (OK, NOT ‘The Hot Chick”; that one was terrible!) and into the mix we fling another montrapatiously-titled show “She Professed Herself Pupil of the Wise Man (“Kenja no Deshi o Nanoru Kenja”), which also doubles as part of the video game genre for anime. (more…)

“Ordinary” People

November 1st, 2022 in Anime, General Reviews by

Hey! It another gender-blender show. I hope that this isn’t the latest anime craze, especially since the focus of these shows is what once was a guy is now a gal. And it’s an isekai as well, so, all bets are off. We find ourselves in the reshaped world of…(take a deep breath; it’s a long title)… “Life with an Ordinary Guy Who Reincarnated into a Total Fantasy Knockout”  (“Fantajī Bishōjo Juniku Ojisan to”, or “With a Fogie Reincarnated as a Pretty Fantasy Girl”, which has been abbreviated as “Fabiniku”). And since we have thrown everything into it, including the kitchen sink, well, it certainly has a lot to take in, so here we go. (more…)

“Great” Expectations

October 27th, 2022 in Anime, General Reviews by

What is it about con men and great heist epics that enthrall us? Is it the intricacies of the plot in order to make this succeed? Is it the panic of potential discovery? It is that the person who is the mark is far and well deserving of them being taken to the cleaners? Is it a battle of one set of amoralistic forces against another set of amoralistic forces? Well, it’s all of that and a bag of chips. Now, if you or I get taken, it’s a travesty. But to those high rollers, that’s a different story. And that different story is “Great Pretender” (not to be confused with the Platters hit, which is called “THE Great Pretender”). (more…)