Inuyasha: The Final Act



Synopsis: In the ancient time of 2006, the anime Inuyasha premiered their final episode in America. This unfinished tale of a middle school girl and her half-dog demon companion was forever banished to extremely early morning time slots, fit for angry loners and joyful stoners. Little did anyone know that for some reason, someone decided that Inuyasha of all things would be the one to be given a proper final season. Not Rurouni Kenshin, not Rave Master, not Bobobobobo. Inuyasha. Weird.

Pros: I have a particular relationship with Inuyasha because I happen to be awake when it aired its reruns early in the morning. So I happen to have seen all of the original series. I knew that, again for some reason, the show was given a proper final season. I only just got around to it, however, because I found a dubbed version. Overall, while a lot stays the same, e.g. random monsters of the week, convenient deus ex machinas, and an admittedly linear story line, I really liked The Final Act. Given only 26 episodes, the anime doesn’t have time to drag its feet with fight scenes or plot points. This thing moves, so much so, that I almost wish every Shoen anime was given such limited time. It make some story events feel more important, and I think it may have actually made me like the main characters more. Shesshomaru and Sango in particular. It also benefits from updated animation, making it look crisper and glossier. And while this isn’t the anime I would have done this for, its nice to see Inuyasha, Kagome, Sango, and Miroku get a deserved farewell.

Cons: Even though the anime fixes the biggest Shoen problem of streeeeeching its scenes, Inuyasha still has a lot of its original negatives. Their are still so many random demons, new characters, and bland story lines. Every story line basically boils down to: they gatta kill Noraku, Miasma, they can’t, Miasma, Inuyasha learns a new fight move, Miasma, he hurts Noraku, Miasma, oh no! Noraku still escapes, Miasma. Rinse and repeat and Miasma. However, I feel that the story is helped tremendously by its relatively short episode count, which forces certain important plot points to manifest about every 2-3 episodes, which helps to cover up some of the work’s trademark flaws. On a less objective topic, apparently, the a lot of the original cast was replace for this dub, so you purist might not dig that (though I couldn’t tell the difference). Also, and obviously, if you haven’t watched the original, you will have no flipping clue what the hell is happening in this thing.

Watch it?: If you saw Inuyasha, Miasma (4/5)

MVP: Naraku


Spamming Miasma since 1996

Best Episode: Ep. 2 “Kagura’s Wind,” and Ep.24 “Naraku’s Uncertain Wish” (One for a sad death, the other for a verbal slap in the face, ouch!)

Tagged , , , , , ,

Log Horizon

Type: Sword Art with a smile


Synopsis: What if you were suddenly stuck in a virtual reality, constantly surrounded by monsters and greedy players, and forced to join prudo-military forces just to survive? Would you wander around in a melancholy haze, forever waving away any potential affection? OR, would you go on rad adventures with your pervy friend and ninja side kick? I’d go with the latter myself.

Pros: So there’s no real way to talk about Log Horizon without comparing it to Sword Art Online. They both have the same premise, being stuck with a MMO RPG, and both follow the life of a highly skilled player how refuses to join a guild. But the biggest difference is also Log Horizons biggest strength. Its not melancholy. If focuses on “living,” not “surviving.” Players in this game can’t die, which makes their situation much less dire than in Sword Art. Instead of being about one guy trying to escape the game, Log Horizon focuses on fleshing out the world by exploring different facets, like guilds, NPCs, and their respective group dynamics with one another. (P.S. The English dub is stellar)

Cons: Log Horizon has a bit of a generic feel, mostly because it appears that the budget was less than, say, Sword Art. There’s no fancy shading, no clever use of shadows, and no incredibly amazing fight scenes. Presentation is definitely B-level. This means it’ll probably be in SAO’s shadow for a while. Its divided into story arcs, which the intro gives away. After a certain point, you’ll start to notice that there’s no such thing as a sad ending in this, which is kinda the opposite problem that Sword Art had. But that’s not a bad thing, especially if your more inclined to that kind of story.

Watch it?: Liked it better than Sword Art (4/5)

MPV: Minori
She grows

Best episode: Ep.22  “The Swallow and the Baby Starling” (Group date!)
Tagged , , , , ,


Type: disk fragmentation?


Synopsis: When school started, three girls and one teacher decided to start a vaguely defined “game club” to slack off and not do much. But then, a few of their enemies (because high school, lol) tried to get their club shut down. After the desperately exhaustive search of a brief afternoon, the girls managed to blackmail the first slightly nice guy they encounter to join. Now it’s mostly up to him to keep the Club he never wanted to join afloat.

Pros: Really funny, great parody, killer side-characters. The anime is the type of comedy show that has random and unimportant side characters show up from time to time, and it works every time. My personal favorites are the son and father team that can read ki for some reason. Aside from this, the key comedy comes from Kenji having outrageous straight-man reactions to the girls’ eccentricities. For example, each have a chosen element, like the electricity elemental, who uses a taser. The plot, as described, is about various forces trying to close down the club, mostly because of feelings, and not the actual reason that the club does nothing and is a complete waste of resources. Though, it is a great scam.

Cons: Even though this isn’t technically a harem, quite a few of the girls do fall in love with Kenji. The main triangle is between little Roka and big boobed Takao. Takao is unsurprisingly the subject of the only pervy jokes in the show. Kinda lazy. Aside from that, I wish it was longer. I want more.
Watch it?: I’m hunting down the manga as we speak (4/5)

MPV: The Scramble for Porn Mags in Space Table-Top Game
How do you play, exactly?

Best episode: Ep.5 “What?! Your Little Sister Makes Your Lunches?!”  (high stakes RPG!)
Tagged , , , ,

Kamisama Kiss

Type: God kisses


Synopsis: Nanami was a high school student in Japan, till her father left her family in horrible debt, in one of those crushing scenes. What was she to do, where was she to go, she was out on her fanny. So she she crashed on the park but a stranger saw more. She had style, she had flair, the was there, that’s how she became the Land God!

Pros: It’s so shojo. I love it. The hero has those big ol’ eyes and colorful bubbles that show up when she feels happy. Or sad. Or slightly hungry. And the boys are all cute. Every single one of them. Even the hobo that turns Nanami into the Land God in the first place. As you can imagine, the story eventually evolves into a love story, where the hero pines for the fox spirit, which surprisingly happens halfway through.

Cons: It’s so shojo, I hate it. The colorful bubbles in particular were out of control. The hero felt the warm fuzzy socks every five seconds. It was one of those “oh, he said bless you after I sneezed, he must be the kindest man in existence.” I liked this anime, but I liked it when it focused on the funny. But instead, I’d say this is 75% romance, 15% comedy. I prefer when those numbers are reversed.

Watch it?: This Shojo had mojo (3/5) 

MPV: The Land God
Why did he do this anyway?

Best episode: Ep.1  “Nanami becomes a Land God” (yep, lets just let all strangers kiss our foreheads)
Tagged , , , , ,

Date A Live

Type: The Inter-Dimensional Dating Game!


Synopsis: In a world where horrible space quakes destroy cities and ruin families, one man can make a difference. This man is Shido Itsuka, who has the unknown ability of having a kind of good face and adequate breath. With the aid of his manipulative sister and her band of dating masters, Shido will save the world…by creating a harem full of homicidal alien warriors.

Pros: I really dug the character work in this anime. No, not things like character interaction or dialogue. That stuff was generic anime stuff. The cool stuff was the character design and associated power set. Kurumi’s were particularly intense.  Each character felt dangerous, and their powers were cool. Even the little girl character had a crazy ice bunny thing. I also like the premise of a whole group of people advising a guy on what do say on a date. However, Iike the Pixar movie, this would work better if it was all in his head instead of in the sky.

Cons: I hated what happened to Tohka. She starts off as this mysterious silent character, but once she’s won over by the hero, she becomes a child. A child in a very curvy body. She only reverts when she’s pissed. The other love interests are a little girl, “non-blood” sister, and quiet girl with secret kink fantasies…so, yeah. The concept of assembling a harem of fighters through kisses isn’t new, but this anime does have great looking fights. I only wish the ending was better paced, because it just happens abruptly. Hope the second season is out.

Watch it:? Fairly fun (3/5)

MPV: Kotori Itsuka
Sister or not, she still has cool looking powers

Best episode: Ep.3 “Sword That Splits the Sky” (momentary awesomeness)
Tagged , , , ,


Type: durawalatugamaga

Synopsis: The city, you’ll never find a more wrecked hive of scum and villainy. Like the back alley doctor, or psychotic debt collector, or sociopathic favor man, or multitude of stalkers, or the new kid, or the headless horseman. But if you can make it there, you can make it anywhere.

Pros: Durarara!! is fascinating. It’s a different kind of slice-of-life anime. Whereas most slice-of-life focus on a small group of high school kids, this focuses on a large cast of varying ages. The great part is that not every character know each other, so it’s neat when different pairings are made. Most of the characters that do know each other only interact to the extent of living in the same general area. They’re not ultra friends, but they are acquaintances, which are fairly rare in the friendship centric anime industry. There’s also no real main character, as each character gets a spotlight and often act as supporting or background characters for others. Some story lines even cross one another. The tone is comedic and mild drama, with energetic but short action scenes sprinkled in.

Cons: While each character gets a spotlight, you’ll notice that some plot points repeat. For example, like three of the characters have to deal with stalkers. Others story lines aren’t the greatest either. I didn’t like Anri’s secret backstory, mostly because adding more magic to the show felt like overkill. Celty by herself gave the show that extra twist, adding anther magical element kinda took away from her. I also disliked the Kida’s backstory, and the show never resolves the secret of Celty’s head, but it does have a second season. A season I look forward to seeing.

Watch it?: Definitely worth a watch (5/5)

MPV: Izaya Prihara
A better sh#t stirrer than Loki

Best episode: Ep. 7 “Bad-ass Dude” (is he even human!?)
Tagged , , ,

Fruit Baskets

Type: I don’t think I saw a single fruit in this anime

Synopsis: So the Chinese zodiac is made of twelve animals, instead of the random star shapes we have in the west. The Easter zodiac show up in a lot of things because they are way cooler. Anyway, this is about a girl moving into a houseful full of a psychologically scarred family. Oh! And they also turn into cute animals when you hug them.

Pros: From my understanding, Fruit Baskets is one of the more famous shojo manga. I’ve read it, which is part of the reason why I’m just now watching the anime. The story translates well to anime, with a few minor differences here and there. Mainly towards the ending. The show is a reversed harem, where a kinda air-headed, but kindhearted girl moves into a house with three handsome men, who have equally handsome relatives. There’s a lot of melodrama, usually revolving around trauma, depression, and fear of rejection. Typical shojo stuff.

Cons: Again, the psychological drama in this is a key plot factor. If you’re not into that, then you may not dig the latter half of the show. I could get into the weird fixation the Sohmas have with Akito, because I would have punched him several times over, but we don’t have seven hours. Just remember that every time a new character is introduced, they will have a sad back story, usually about a woman abandoning them. No smiles for the Sohmas. Huh, I just realized that Tohru’s mother also “abandoned” her…On a personal note, I disliked the slightly different events where Tohru needed a pep talk to chase after the Kyo. A lot of the Sohma’s have had women leave them because of the curse, but Tohru is suppose to be different, but in the anime, she isn’t. Left to her own devices, she would have left too. I think that takes a little bit from the character, but again, that’s a personal preference.

Watch it?: Good show, better manga (4/5) 

MPV: Hatori Sohma
I ship it

Best episode: Ep. 8 “Don’t Cry, For the Snow will Surely Melt” (no guys, I really do ship it)
Tagged , , ,

Summer Wars

Type: Not an actual war

Synopsis: Men are easy. This has been established. Take in point the Kenji Koiso, who gets roped into going to a family reunion by this pretty girl in his school. It’s obviously very awkward to visit another family, especially when the media labels you a digital terrorist. On the plus side, you do get to go on Digimon-esque adventures with your future in-laws.

Pros: This straight up gave me Digimon flashbacks. In fact, I think this had the same plot as the first Digimon movie, e.g., a program goes virus and threatens the digital world. But even though the digital world stuff is awesome to look at, the real strenght of the movie was the portrayal of the family. The family felt real. I could point to a few a saw, “I have an uncle like that!” The combination of characters and their familiarity with one another made you feel like the protagonist did. You were a stranger looking in, then slowly becoming one of them.

Cons: Story wise, there’s not really a negative. I mean, you could argue that the main character becomes marginalized as the story plays out, but I like to think he just becomes part of the larger family unit. But that’s really is. This is a great movie that you can watch with anyone.

Watch it?: This and The Girl Who Leapt Through Time. Talk about a double act.

MVP: King Kazama
I love his design.

Best moment: The line, “Are you Man enough to date by granddaughter?” (I’m using that later on)
Tagged , , ,

King of Fighters: Another Day

Type: Are you O-K?

Synopsis: Back in the 90’s, there was a momentary fighting game boom thanks to the popularity of Street Fighter 2. One of the most well-made challengers was the King of Fighters series, which was really a combination of other less successful games released by the company SNK. The anime itself tries to highlight some of the most popular characters, to varying degrees.

Pros: I truly believe that out of all types of games, Fighting games are the most anime friendly (with RPGs coming an immediate second). After all, fighting games are just two well dressed people with short back stories fighting each other. This anime has some of that. We see May, and Terry, and Geese’s kid show up and fight a little. If each episode weren’t so short, I could imagine this being a regular anime.

Cons: While I believe fighters and anime work well together, it’s usually only the animes that are turned into fighters. For some reason, the reverse almost never works out. Maybe it’s because fighters have too many characters, and most central plots are dumb (let’s be real, Shadoloo is dumb). In KOF’s case, the anime will only appeal to hardcore KOF fans, because I had no idea who 99% of these people were. The story is nowhere, consisting mostly of character interactions, which again, only matters if you understand who they are to one another. Even then, the events are weak.

Watch it?: Even KOF fans will complain (2/5) 

MPV: Terry Bogart
Hey, get serious!

Best episode: too short to remember
Tagged , , , , ,

High School DXD New

Type: The one with the boobs


Synopsis: One day, this total loser got killed by this girl with big boobs he thought liked him. However, this turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to him. Because right as he was dying, he was turned into a demon by a Demon Princess with even bigger boobs. Then he got dragon powers or whatever, that’s not important. What is important is that now, the loser’s life revolves around boobs. This is just a continuation of his story.

Pros: I remember really liking the first High School DXD. This fan service comedy really struck a cord with me, mostly because of the boob jokes. What can I say, I am a simple man. Now, maybe because I watched the first season censored, but I believe the nudity game was raised this season. Every dang episode has a bare boob in it. This season still deals with Devils, the Church, and Fallen Angels, but these factions become much more defined. We’re also introduced to a new potential love interest in the form of Xenovia (a exorcist), and we get more back story for Kiba and Akeno. It’s on par with the first season, but sometimes all you need is a good boob joke.

Cons: I really feel that the Sacred Gear concept is out of place in this primarily boob driven anime. They felt very shoen to me, almost like the show was trying to sell me a toy. I’m not sure that the mature audience for a show about demon girls smothering their boobs on a guy’s face would buy toys. The season has two arcs, one about the church vs fallen angels, and the other about a new vampire character. It was interesting to see the main character teach someone else, but the show is seriously veering to overflow character status. The main difference in this season was that Rise and Akeno were legitimately starting to fall in love with the protagonist. The harem is forming.

Watch it?: How maybe times did I say “boobs” (3/5)

MVP: Akeno Himejima
Seriously stepped up her seduction game

Best episode: Ep.10 “Various Three-way Deadlocks!” (lap-pillow!)
Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 125 other followers