Monthly Archives: June 2015

Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Rebellion

Type: What a heel turn


Synopsis: So this is the third Madoka movie, but its actually the first sequel to the anime. The franchise did that thing where they dupe rubes into buying two “movies” that are really just elongated clip shows of the original. What rubes.

Pros: Rebellion is a continuation of the anime story, but you don’t know that for about 30 minutes. The movie starts with all five magical girls together, and Homura still in her shy girl phase. Given that this anime deals with timelines, your not exactly sure when the anime takes place until the first reveal happens. Since a lot of the film’s impact depends on surprise and twists, I’ll try my best not to spoil much. What’s not confusing is the stellar action and animation of the Madoka franchise, and we finally get to see the girls fight as a unit! We also get their transformation sequences for the first time (probably), and they certainly fit with the rest of the show. The Russian (?), French (?) inspired animation scenes that are still here and as discomforting as ever. The story, while still a bit off, certainly changes the trajectory of the franchise. Rebellion feels like a movie, which is all I ever want.

Cons: The ending might bother some people, though I though it was great. The film is a solid two hours, but I feel that it could have been a smidge shorter. Once again, despite being the title characters, Madoka feels more like a hanger on than protagonist. The film is Homura’s story, and sadly, she still does her signature hair flip every five seconds. Some of the girls also felt a little out of character. Like, why would Homura confide in Kyoko of all people? How come Sayaka is more perceptive this time around? What’s with the little girl? No really, they never properly explained that part.

Watch it?: Another great entry into a weird and awesome franchise

MVP: The Actions Scenes


Still my favorite part

Best Moment: The Homura/Timoe fight (the fated battle!)

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Bayonetta: Bloody Fate

Type: I like her new hair cut better


Synopsis: 500 years ago, Umbran Witches and Lumen Sages battled over the…ugh, lets not do this. Here’s what you need to know. This is Bayonetta. Its a video game franchise about a tall and shapely bullet witch who looks kinda like a sexy librarian. She has an English-accent and talks in seductive innuendos. She fights creepy looking angels with her magic hair that doubles as her clothing, and she sometimes hands out with Joe Pescie. It’s all very tongue and cheek, and the anime gets like, 80% of that.

Pros: Fans of the video game may either really like this anime, or hate it. It depends on how hardcore you are to consistency in interpretation. The anime kinda only shows the highlights of the first game, but it does it do it. The film was clearly made by people who touched the source material. It’s not a scene by scene retelling, but its still fun to see Bayo fight angels with all her weapons and “heel boy” sexy talk. There are also the occasional references to other Bayo-related games (ex: the names Sylvia, Clair, Trish, and Ami are mentioned). Its not quite as crazy as the game, but its a nice addition.

Cons: The music. I’m normally not a stickler for that sort of thing, but the music in the film was disappointing. Almost non of the score was able to capture the campy fun of the game. I can only guess that the original music was tied up in legal rights mumbo-jumble and couldn’t be used here. It should stated again that this is a adaption, not a translation, so a few things are off. The pacing especially felt awkward, because the film tried to cram an 8 hour experience in 2. It’s also not as over-the-top in its fan service as the game…so sorry pervs? And for non-game players, the story will not impress you, because even in the game, the story not the strong point.

Watch it?: As a Bayo fan, I liked it.

MVP: The English Cast


They’re the same voices from the game!!

Best Moment: Bayo in a nightie (I think she looked nice).

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Avengers Confidential: Black Widow & Punisher

Type: It was made by Madhouse, so it counts


Synopsis: A surprisingly handsome looking Punisher teams up with Black Widow with her 70’s hair to bring down a secret organization making super soldiers. They fight twice, the they bond a little, then the Avengers show up for no reason. It’s not Winter Soldier, but it’ll do.

Pros: So I love when Western properties get the anime treatment, mostly because I can understand the references. Lucky for all you comic nerds, this thing does have the occasional easter egg, including an appearance from Amadeus Cho, Marvel’s 7th smartest man (who rides the Hulk FYI). The team-up of the Punisher and Black Widow worked surprisingly well, especially since I was wary at the start. The Punisher particularly shines in this, as does his English voice actor (though, since he only spoke in short straight forward lines, it wasn’t that hard). This may be my favorite non-comic interpretation of the Punisher, and I wish he could have gotten his own series out of this. The Black Widow on the other hand is, fine. She fights well and her interactions with Amadeus was funny, but her love subplot was middle of the road. Still, pretty fun straight-to-video movie.

Cons: Obviously, they tacked on the “Avengers” part to sell more copies. Because even though it technically has Avengers in it, this is a Black Widow/Punisher story. Selling it as something otherwise felt a bit incredulous. As stated above, the Black Widow story felt uneven, and I don’t feel she got as good a portrayal as the Punisher. It wasn’t bad or anything, but it wasn’t great either. If this movie is part of the “MCU” it may take place after the entire franchise is over (which would explain why Captain America doesn’t show up).

Watch it?: Pretty Good overall.

MVP: Frank Castle, The Punisher


I love his design here

Best Moment: When a criminal refused to talk, so the Punisher broke his arm and said, “You mouth seems to be working.” (classic)


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Hellsing Ultimate

Type: Six Years in the Making


Synopsis: The English Hellsing organization hunt and destroy the creatures of the night for Queen and Country. For years, the biggest thing they needed to contend with was the Iscariot group supported by the Vatican. Typical Protestant vs Catholic competition, until a group of VAMPIRE NAZIS!!!!! led by an actual Mad Scientist decide to invade England. Luckily for Hellsing, they have a secret weapon, an incredibly deadly and enigmatic vampire named Alucard, which suspiciously spells “Dracula” backwards, hmm…..

Pros: Man, is this thing stylized. If your a fan of over the top violence with plenty of gore, this is the one for you. This here is high octane folks. It should be noted that this is Hellsing Ultimate, not to be confused with the original Hellsing anime. The differences? Well, for one, this one is much prettier. Second, it apparently follows the manga plot much for closes. Finally, each episodes is about 45-60 minutes long. I also feel that its very Western friendly. The plot, Nazi Vampires vs. the Church, is familiar enough to come out of a B-movie or video game. The English voice work is fantastic, and an almost textbook example of the difference between localization and straight translation. I myself particularly liked the use of English accents, since the story takes place mainly in Britain. I also found it very impressive that the whole anime works despite taking 6 years to complete.

Cons: This is a very violent anime, which may turn you off. It was also the first instance that I ran into necrophilia in an anime, so….yeah. To the show’s credit though, they had a pretty blond girl with bouncy breasts, and nothing pervy happens to her. Their are some moments when the animation quality fluxuates, and I don’t feel that the humor used landed quite well.

Watch it?: I mean, you do see a lot of Nazis get killed…which is AWESOME (5/5)

MPV: Alexander Anderson


That Scottish Accent Though!

Best Episode: Ep. 5 “Hellsing V” (The Battle of London begins again!)

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