Category Archives: Dramedy

Tenchi in Tokyo

Type: Not, ah, my favorite entry.

Synopsis: I was going to try to make a long point about people moving new places, dating new people, and how this sometimes means losing track of your old friends and family. But that was taking so long, so screw it. What this show is really about is Tenchi trying to escape his crazy life filled with alien girls by moving far away and shacking up with the most IRRITATING girl you could think of…only for her to be a psychic projection of another alien girl.

Pros: For all it’s faults, Tenchi in Tokyo does a good job at staying true to the characters of the Tenchi Muyo Series. There’s no real point that in the show that the characters act in a way that isn’t believable to them. The essential plot is that the bad guy tries and succeeds in separating Tenchi and crew, and each react to this in a way I can buy into. Mihoshi and Kiyone leave after getting a reassignment from the Galaxy Police. Ryoko goes on a violent rampage in space after having her heart broken, and goes through the best story arc she’s ever had in the franchise. Plus, it was cool to see Ryoko as a proper space pirate for an extended period of time. And Ayeka tries her best to keep it all together since, as a lonely princess, she most likely never had many friends. What’s also interesting is that this iteration of Tenchi may be the most unlikable he’s ever been, but arguably the most realistic. The catalyst for the show’s plot is when Tenchi decides to leave for Tokyo to further his studies. While there, he meets a seemingly normal human girl and starts to date her, leading to the group slowly drifting apart. What made Tenchi unlikable was his efforts to keep the girls away from him and his life in Tokyo. At first, it starts as him comedically trying to stop Ryoko and Ayeka from interrupting him from starting a new life. But as the show goes on, Tenchi starts to outright ignore his former friends. Almost as if he’s willing to abandon his friends if it means living a stereotypical normal life. The plot even revolves around this, as it’s Tenchi’s bond with the girls that the antagonist is trying to severe. What’s especially interesting is that Tenchi wasn’t tricked into doing this. Not really. All he did was move and meet someone. But that was enough to make him move one from his hometown life.

Cons: While the character work in this entry in the show was fascinating, and probably the best exploration of each member of the cast, or at least Ryoko and Tenchi, this show is a mess. The tone of the show is also all over the place. This show contains both the sillies jokes that Tenchi Muyo has ever broadcast, as well as it’s most dramatic moments.  It’s starts off way to slow. The first six episodes are basically an unfunny farce that do nothing to keep the audience’s attention. If I wasn’t for my commitment to the series, I probably would have stopped watching. Well, that’s a lie, I watch no matter how bad, cause I’m RIDE OR DIE. But I probably wouldn’t have payed as much attention. The real meat of the show doesn’t come until 7, when the show reveals how this version of Tenchi and the girl’s first met. From there we get Ryoko’s Date, Ayeka trying to hitch hike to Tokyo, Tenchi starting to date Sakuya–the real story basically. Then there’s Sakuya…OK, I don’t want to be that fanboy, but I’m gonna be that fanboy. Sakuya is a horrible character who forced me to skip every scene that she was in (which included the majority of Tenchi scenes). She’s a homewreaker. Literally. She was created to distract Tenchi and keep him away from the other girls. The other more interesting girls, like the bad-ass space pirate, or the alien princess, or the two space cops. The show tries really had to make the audience like her, but I don’t think she really added anything to the existing cast. Tenchi, like most harems, is build on troupes. Ryoko is the rude girl. Ayeka is the princess. Sasami is the cute one. Mihoshi is the ditz. Mihoshi is the exacerbated career woman. But no, Tenchi’s first kiss in the franchise had to come from Sakuya, another in a long line of cheerful school girls who makes boxed lunches every day and dreams of nothing more than being a beautiful bride, because Anime. Goddam it Anime. I think this whole thing would have worked better as a movie. It would have at least tightened the plot and reduced Sakuya’s screen time. That being said, I guess I can’t call this show terrible if it caused me to feel this strongly about it.

Watch it?: Man, for a average show, I sure had a lot to say about it. Heck I have more, like how Ryoko was the only one who trusted Tenchi with Sakura, but her trust was broken. Anime men are dogs! (3/5)

MVP: Ryoko

It was great to see Ryoko cut loose

Best Episode: Ep17-19 The Separation Arc (it’s like when your favorite band breaks up!)

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Rage of Bahamut: Genesis

Type: Not to be confused with the Super Nintendo version

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Synopsis: To put in bluntly, the show’s about a demon who forces a con man into traveling with her while not knowing that she’s the key to reviving a world threatening Dragon. If you want it not so bluntly, you tease, the show’s about an afro-man who tries to get into a lady’s pants by telling her he knows the way to a mythical city. This backfires when the lady turns out to be a super powerful demon who stormed heaven to steal a magic key that can revive the world ending Bahamut. Along the way, they’re joined by a noble but unlucky knight and a zombie loli.

Pros: There’s not two ways about it. Rage of Bahamut is very pretty. If you want proof, look up the opening scene between Favaro and Kaisar. It’s practically movie quality. In fact, there quiet a bit of good animations scenes throughout the show. Like the Favaro and Amira dance in ep. 02, the giant crab battle in ep. 04, most of the fight and action scenes, and everything in ep11-12, etc. But the strongest aspect of the show are the characters of Favaro and Kaisar. Favaro is, in no uncertain terms, a scoundrel. He lies, cheats, steals, manipulates, and is basically motivated by his own well being. You even see it in his fighting style, which is dominated by misdirection and slight of hand. In all honesty, Favaro is the most entertaining thing about the show. He’s just so scummy, it’s great! Then you have Kaisar, whose much more noble than Favaro, but also has way more tunnel vision, often to the detriment of the situation at hand. He’s a buffoonish hero with a sad backstory that explains his love/hate relationship with Favaro.

Cons: While watching this show, I had a few consistent thoughts in my mind episode through episode. These were:  “this show is very pretty,” “Favaro sure is fun,” and “something’s missing…” It’s this last thought that troubled me the most. Because, by all accounts, this show should be great. It clearly had a high budget, strong directors, and a good main cast. But then I started to look at the show as a whole. And as a whole, the show’s kind of a mess. As you pull back from the central premise of a demon and a rouge traveling together, you get a big plot involving multiple angels, multiple demons, Joan of Arc for some reason, and a soon to be revived Dragon. These elements over complicate things, especially as they become more prominent as the show goes on.  The travel between Favaro and Amira was fun enough, especially with Favaro having to come up with new reasons for the long trip and Kaisar continually hounding them. Speaking of Amira, can I ask what the hell happened between episode 1 and 2? Because for some reason Amira goes from a quiet bad ass demon to a rather childish ditz in no time flat. Amira actually got increasingly on my nerves as the show went on, especially when a lot of her achievements are gradually revealed to be partially because of outside force. Overall, the show is pretty to look at, has fun moments, but I can see why it’s not talked about more. (p.s. It’s also got a horrid opening. Just awful).

Watch it?: Based on an online card game! (4/5)

MVP: Favaro

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Keep rockin’ the fro’

Best Episode: Ep.1 “Encounter Wytearp” (amazing scenes. very exciting)

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Dai-Shogun: Great Revolution

Type: Bad Animation

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Synopsis: You call this a “Great Revolution,” despite the fact that it’s not great and there is no revolution depicted at all.

Pros: The anime is basically a feudal Japan story with the occasional giant robot. It’s about trying to convince the illegitimate son of a shogun to take the title, all while dodging assassination attempts. That’s where the action comes in. The twist is that the main character has access to a giant robot called “Susanoo”, but only as long as he’s a virgin. That’s where the comedy comes in. And ironically enough, the person sent to protect his virginity is a busty ninja girl with curves for days in a loin-cloth kimono outfit. No wonder the shogunate died off.

Cons: The animation is horrendous. The anime uses this weird flash-hybrid style of animation that just does not work. It makes movement look awkward and fake. FAKE in an animated show about giant robots. I don’t really have a high standard for animation quality, but damn does this look bad. It took me about 3 episodes to notice, and once I did, the illusion was shattered. Story wise, the plot is fairly innocuous. The only real interesting bits are Keiichiro comically tries to lose his virginity, only for ninja girl Kiriko to stop him.  The lead is a typical hot blooded, prideful character. With the exception of the flat-chested fox demon, all the women have giant breasts. The main male villain is stereotypical evil. The only real character of interest is Hōkōin, and even she’s just a evil demon lady. All the other auxiliary characters, like the “cool” pirate, the female Shinsengumi, and the swordswoman that follows Keiichiro around, are not that interesting. That’s really the long and short of Dai-Shogun: it’s just not that interesting.

Watch it?: You can live without it (2/5)

MVP: Hōkōin

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I’m a FAN of her. Get it? DO YOU GET IT?

Best Episode: Ep.3 “The sex witch Hōkōin strikes!” (sex witch!? What’s that!?)

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To Be Hero

Type: A Superhero Tale

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Synopsis: In a world of Men of Steel and Supersoldiers there stands a lone figure in the night, protecting us from all that may cause us harm. He is Ossan, the sh$tty father!

Pros: To Be Hero is a short, 11 minute an episode, series about a father who is transformed into a fat and ugly superhero. Since he can’t turn back, and all the words out of his mouth tend to sound perverted, he cannot stay with his teenage daughter. He tries his best to stay close to her, despite the occasional weird alien trying to kill him. The show mainly uses absurdist and toilet humor to get the comedy across. But the real hook of the show is the relationship between Ossan and his daughter Min, as Ossan’s transformation forces him to reflect on some of his selfish actions as a father and husband. The show never forgets to remind you of it’s central conflict, and thus retains your attention.

Cons: As said above, the show’s humor comes from absurd situation and toilet jokes. Hell, Ossan is actually a toilet salesman. That’s his job. So don’t be surprised if the show’s humor turns you off early on. Even I needed to take breaks from it, and the series is only 120 minutes long! The show can be crass at times, and a lot of the skits are more silly than funny. The show is kinda sloppy. However, it does have a strong ending, and those not wanting to watch the whole thing could simple just watch episodes 1,2 and 13.

Watch it?: It sticks the landing (3/5)

MVP: Min

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She’s kinda the lynchpin of the show.

Best Episode: Ep.12 “Stay with me Daddy!” (I want to be a superhero…)

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Saga of Tanya the Evil

Type: Lil’Hitler, she’s such a scamp!

Synopsis: A cut-throat Japanese salary man is murdered on day by a disgruntled employee. It’s at this moment that he’s confronted by God, who he refuses to acknowledged. This starts a frankly pretty feud between the two that results in the salary man being reincarnated as a cute little blond girl in the middle of Nazi Germany. Well, technically it’s a parallel world where magic exists, but let’s be real here. We’re watching a show about Nazis. Now named Tanya, the young Nazi tries her best to land a cushy military job and spit in “Being X’s” smug face, only the be constantly sent to the front lines because she’s too good at the job. It’s almost like she’s truly blessed

Pros: In defense of a show about Nazis…yeah, ganna have to rethink that sentence. In defense of a show about a psychotic little girl, the title of the show does contain the word “Evil” in it. We are not watching a show about good guys here. The show basically depicts the invasion of France (and possibly Czechoslovakia or Poland) by Nazi forces. But to the show’s credit, we as an audience kinda forget that early on. Each of the Nazi’s shown, or “Imperials,” aren’t cartoonist super-villains, they’re soldiers trying to win a war. Even Tanya, the cruelest character here, would rather be a strategist than relish in the violence of battle. And the show never pretends that Tanya’s side is right. In every battle, we see the losing side’s reaction, and the show often comments on the destruction left in Tanya’s wake. All that being said, this is kinda a fun show. Tanya is delightfully evil, and her exaggerated actions are balanced well by her cutesy design. Tanya is adorable. Murder and all. And her personal feud with Being X, despite her obvious fate to lose, is hilarious. The show’s not “ha ha” funny, but it is entertaining (except for Tanya’s facial expressions, which are always hilarious).

Cons: Again, the protagonists are Nazis…so, yeah. I know it sounds like I’m beating a dead horse, but I’d rather be beating a dead Nazi. That was a little aggressive, wasn’t it…ah well, as long as we got a dead Nazi out of it. Story wise, the show has a cliffhanger ending, so either this gets another season or you’d better read the light novels. It was cool that the respective armies in the show had flying mages rather than airplanes. But I felt that a lot of the battles, and most of the setting for that matter, looked the same. Just a mishmash of grey with some city scenes thrown in. At least, as the show progressed. Early on, we got to see Tanya’s rise through the ranks, which was cool. But once she got her battalion, things become a bit stagnant, as story goes into a target, mission, target, mission, cycle. Such is the life of a solider I suppose. Ironically, Tanya seems to forget her original goal of a desk job once she becomes a leader. The only real consistent plot lines are Tanya’s feud with Being X, and the Sioux family’s feud with Tanya. But still, I hope there’s a second season down the line (especially since Russia and the United States are strongly hinted at in the last episode).

Watch it?: I’ve written the word “Nazi” quiet a lot in this review (4/5)

MVP: Tanya

Who knew evil could be this moe

Best Episode: Ep. 1 “The Devil in the Rhine” (even though it’s a battle episode, it tells you everything you need to know about Tanya’s character)

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The Irregular at Magic High School

Type: slooooooooooooow

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Synopsis: Tell me if you heard this one before. A high school full of super powered teenagers, mostly female, accepts a male student who is placed in the lower ranks due to a technicality. But the boy’s actually a secret bad ass that never does anything wrong, causing the female students to all quiver in unison. At least no one has pink hair in this one.

Pros: The Irregular at Magic High School has all the trappings of a generic light novel anime based on a magical battle school. Except for the main protagonist, Tatsuya. While Tatsuya does have all the circumstantial trappings of a magical battle school light novel hero, such as a harem of girls who love him, the uncanny ability to succeed in any situation, and secret powers, his main character trait is being stoic. That’s not be calling him bland. He literally does not feel emotions, having repressed them early in life. While more light novel action heroes are usually a little bumbling to give off an image of geniality, Tatsuya does not. He never laughs, rarely smiles, and most of his expressions are reserved for dry humor or affection for his sister. This calm demeanor almost justifies his level of skill and mary-sue like ability to solve any problem. Plus, his quiet but handsome attitude is kinda hot, so you can see why most of the girls naturally flock to him. Story wise, first arc is the strongest, since it sets up this whole social conflict between people with magic, people with weak magic, and people with not magic. These themes of inequality and discrimination make the anime seem like it’s going somewhere, even if it ultimately doesn’t.

Cons: It’s just so boring. The anime has three arcs: The School arc, the School-Tournament arc, and the War arc. The first arc is the most interesting and the most promising. It introduces a world were magic is real, and magicians are trained as soldiers from an early age. In the most elite of elite magic school, the student body has developed their own social cast system: Blooms and Weeds, based on test scores. This echoes the larger world issues between Magicians and Non-Magicians. Tatsuya, being a “weed” with great skills, throws a wrench into this system. That’s cool and all, and lasts about 7 episodes. The next arc is the tournament arc, which Tatsuya’s high school wins, even though the first anime opening had the audacity of framing one of the competitors as Tatsuya’s rival (false advertisement!). The last arc is a war arc against some terrorists or something, but honestly, I was checked out by then. The only real interesting thing about the last arc was the reveal that Tatsuya is secretly a soldier, but the show kinda reveals this in the firs episode. So story wise, I don’t recommend this anime. What about character wise? Nope on that either. There is no character development here. Like none at all. The only person who actually changes and evolves is a character in the first arc who joined a terrorist cell and later regrets it. But that’s it. And I don’t even want to mention that explicit incest between Tatsuya and his sister! I don’t want to be that guy, but their relationship is an abomination and will cursed them to the fiery depths of hell. (P.s. There’s also this weird hue over the show that makes it seem that everything is slightly glowing.

Watch it?: Maybe the first 7 episodes. (3/5)

MVP: Tatsuya Shiba

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I found his cold demeanor refreshing

Best Episode: Enrollment I-VII (the first arc)

 

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The Pet Girl of Sakurasou

Type: Typical Light Novel

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Synopsis: An art prep school, which I’m sure is sure hard to get into and requires a lot of effort, has a special dorm designated for trouble making students…for some reason. And by “trouble making” I of course mean weirdos. Even by art student standards. One of them has cats. FREAK. That same cat dude, Sorata, has given up on his dreams because he doesn’t really feel good enough to try, but that all changes when a beautiful art genius moves in and becomes the subject of his awe and resentment because she’s a natural born art genius. She also clearly lives with Savant Syndrome, given her explicitly stated inability to take care of herself, but the show glosses this over and calls her “eccentric.” Because hey! Anime!

Pros: The Pet Girl of Sakurasou is a melodramatic slice of life story with comedic elements. The comedy comes from a group of eccentrics all living under one roof. You have the energetic one, the playboy, the computer snob, the lazy dorm teacher, the emotionless genius, and the straight man in Sorata and Nanami. One of the trade make gags of the show are the skits between Sorata and one of the other characters, usually involving quick quips between Sorata and one of his dorm mates over an embarrassing or frustrating situation. Like trying to teach the art genius Shina how to cook. Or trying to convince Nanami that it isn’t what it looks like. These are great, and I highly encourage you to look for these short scenes on online even if you don’t watch the show. The melodrama comes from Sorata and Nanami, the two characters how have a dream and must deal with the trials and tribulations that comes with following a dream. The show does a really great job at depicting the emotional struggles one faces with trying to achieve a dream or goal, especially in the arts. Particularly when faced with multiple failures and false starts even after working yourself to your physical, mental, and emotional limit. This is especially true with Sorata, who is introduced as someone who would rather not even try due to fear of failure. The character of Shina is particularly interesting in this respect, as she’s often the subject of resentment and jealousy due to her natural ability and easy successes. She is used to represent the darker and often unwarranted feelings one gets towards other people’s professional or personal success, even though your often not angry at a particular person, but at yourself and the situation. The rest of the show just involves love triangles and the power of friendship of whatever.

Cons: The show’s story beats are very predictable. After the first two episodes, you can pretty much tell how the rest of the episodes are going to go. For those wondering, it goes: silly, sad, angry/resentful, sad again, uplifting, and finally happy. If this doesn’t happen within one episode, it will happen over two or three episodes. But the show doesn’t really break this cycle. It makes a lot of episodes easy to skip or gloss over. And ironically, much like the other characters of the show, my feelings towards Shina are mixed. One the one hand, I liked her emotional growth (even if it was because of “love”), and she was a good comedic foil for Sorata. On the other hand, her inability to do even the most basic personal tasks does not really balance out her Mary Sue like abilities. I get that her not being able to take care of herself is suppose to make her endearing, but it really just made her kinda annoying to watch. Even I found it hard to sympathize with given her amazing art skills. I think that if the show had played her condition as more serious than comedic, it would have been easier to like her. I also found myself not really caring for Misaki and Jin’s love story. They were alright characters, but their plots don’t really impact the plot in any significant way. Maybe it works better in the books? And lastly, I felt that the whole “chasing your dreams is hard” would have worked better with a slightly older cast, like between 18-21. My biggest dream in high school was beating Kingdom Hearts 2 to get the secret ending, not preparing myself for career setbacks.

Watch it?: Good, and maybe even great to some people. (4/5)

MVP: Sorata

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One of the realist depictions of emotional in all of anime.

Best Episode: Ep.5-6 “The Serious Girl of Sakura Dormitory” and “The Blue After the Rain” (funny, sad, dramatically over the top, love triangle, a good showcase of the show in general)

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Chaika- The Coffin Princess

Type: Gothic Lolita confirmed

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Synopsis: A not as cool as you think with the name COFFIN PRINCESS girl is on the search for the remains of her evil Wizard Emperor Dad so she can bury them. I mean, it’s not like an evil Wizard Emperor would ever do something messed up to his own body parts….She ends up hiring two saboteurs to help her along the way. Now, why  the people hiding the body parts didn’t just give the Coffin Princess and her friends decoy body parts is another story. I guess they don’t want anything to compromise their bragging rights of owning the shin of the last great Wizard Emperor.

Pros: As anime based on light novels that don’t really have a definitive ending goes, this was pretty fun. The action’s good, the animation’s good, and the characters are good. Well, some of them are good. Mainly the three leads, Chaika, Toru, and Akira. Chaika speaks in broken Yoda speak, which made her a little more of a unique moe character. Toru break away from the typical whiny or mary sue mold for male leads by having actual motivations and opinions. For example, the initial reason he joined Chaika is because she promised him more battles, which really appealed to him as a sabateour (basically a ninja) in peace time. And Akira was a great comedic stoic, even if her love for her unmotivated “brother” is well worn material. The trio’s journey to find the missing body parts of the dead emperor is a great frame for world building, and we get to meet a lot of interesting characters. Not to mention that the fights in this are pretty well made, Toru and friends usually end up out thinking their opponents rather than trying to overpower them. Hell, one of the last fights ends with a subtle stabbing. (p.s. This anime also has one of the grossest moments I’ve ever seen. It’s in the last episode. Only in anime!)

Cons: The plot for this anime is fairly predictable. Once the second “Chaika” is introduced, you pretty much know what’s going to happen. Hell, the anime even opens with “Chaika” being given an ominous warning. To save you the 2 seconds it would take to figure it out: Chaika is one of several clones created by the late Emperor to collect his remains in the even of his death. This is most likely so he can resurrect himself and get revenge or whatever. The different versions of Chaika are cool, as they each amass a different type of entourage. What’s actually holding the anime back more are the “Gillett Corps,” the shows main “antagonists” who are following Chaika and friends. They’re made up of 2 other lolitas and other boring people. I actually skipped the scenes where they showed up, and lost almost zero events that were plot relevant. It’s almost like Chaika and friends were so charismatic, that the author has to throw in dead weight to balance it out. Speaking of Chaika and friends, I’ve stated above that I really like Toru. He’s a more introspective and tactial lead than I’m use to. But his status is hurt by the story giving him the stereotypical origin of having a sweet girl die in his past, thus motivating his training and skills, and his secret crush on Chaika. Come on Coffin Princess, you can do better than that.

Watch it?: Very fun (4/5)

MVP: Toru

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Turns out having a lead who actually thinks before he acts is a good thing.

Best Episode: “The Valley of No Return” (too silly not to like)

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Black Cat

Type: Tries to fit in waaaay too much

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Synopsis: In the most basic terms, this is an B-level anime about a disgruntled government employee who travels around with a bounty hunter and a teenage girl. But honestly, the “main character” is the most uninteresting part. I was way more enthralled by oddly cute story about a father figure taking his charge for ice cream, fireworks, getting her tones of books, and letting her hunt down criminals by utilizing her super soldier abilities. Maybe my tastes are maturing….

Pros: As stated above, this anime is a really fun B-anime. I’d put it right up there with Outlaw Star and Negima!? There are really 2 main plots that run parallel to each other in the anime. The primary plot is about Train, an ex-government assassin who’s on a quest for revenge against the man who killed a girl he kinda, sorta liked. I mean, they only met for, like, 30 minutes combined, but she was being all manic pixie. Boys like that. Train’s rival starts a revolutionary terrorist, “Apostles of the Star,” who drive the main plot. The other plot involves Eve, an artificial life form who’s powers drive the plot of the last arc. But really, the anime is mostly about 3 people going on wacky adventures with one another. That’s when its at its best. Train’s the wacky one, Sven’s the straight man, and Eve’s the deadpan girl. And sometimes they’re joined by Rinslet, a sly con woman. The three had great chemistry, make a great comedic team, and I honestly could have lived with the entire series just being them going on jobs.

Cons: There is actually a lot wrong with Black Cat. The story is rushed. The original manga was 20 volumes. The show is only 24 episodes. That’s practically a volume per episode. The show tries it’s best to cram in as many characters and villains as it can, but most are forgettable. I mean, yeah, Creed’s obsession with Train was unique, but he’s outfit was just too much to take him seriously. And the Apostles and the Numbers aren’t really given enough time individually to establish themselves as credible threats. This is a rare case where the “read the manga” ending would have been better than the “let’s get as many plot points as we can” ending. You never really get a chance to “know” any of these characters. And the English Dub dips in quality one too many times. Train’s story is ultimately uninteresting, and he’s more of a poster boy than compelling protagonist. Eve’s story isn’t as fleshed out as I would have liked it. And Sven isn’t really given an arc at all. He has a quick flashback and that’s it. I liked Rinslet’s addition, but she usually stayed at arms length most of the time. But the most jarring this about watching this show is that ep1-7 feels very removed from the rest of the show. The first seven episodes are the intro arc, which is way more melodramatic and dark than the rest of the show (the first arc is literally all at night). And Train is way more of a emo anime boy than the happy go lucky guy he is later. I would actually not recommend watching ep1-7 first. I would actually watch these between ep10 and 11, or even until ep20. I think this anime would have been truly great if it’s story had been given more episodes to breath.

Watch it?: For all it’s faults, it’s still a fun ride (4/5)

MVP: Sven

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This is an alternate version of Kenji Harima. This is my headcannon now.

Best Episode: Ep.8 “The Sweeping Cat / A Traveling Cat” (adventure!)

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Mobile Fighter G Gundam

Type: Super Fighting Robots!

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Synopsis: So what do you do after your Mecha series has gone on for 15 years with waning popularity? Some people would double down on what brought them to the dance in the first place…but screw that! Who needs introspective war narratives when you could have Giant Robots beat each other up real nice!!

Pros: One of the most interesting things about Mobile Fighter G Gundam is the history surrounding it. The anime premiered on the 15th anniversary of the Gundam series. It was a franchise reboot, and the first to diverge from the original “Universal Century” timeline. This newest entry into the Gundam franchise moved away from military stories to a outlandish martial arts story. And it worked! Fighter G did revive the Gundam franchise. I know that it was the first Gundam series I watched. It’s had clear influences on other media, from Gurren Laggan to Pacific Rim. And funny enough, Neon Genesis Evangelion would premiere a year after. The premise, which is very Shoen inspired, is that each nation now lives in orbiting space colonies. Every 4 years, they hold a world tournament where national representatives fight one another in Gundam Mechas. So you wind up with things like the Canadian Gundam fighting the Russian Gundam, and etc. This was the funnest aspect of the show, seeing what each nation’s Gundam looked like and fought. It may not sound very intellectual, but it was very fun.

Cons: This was very much a “boys manga” anime (even if it wasn’t based on any manga). There’s only one Female pilot in the entire show. The story is exactly what you think it is. A passionate protagonist enters a fighting tournament to help his family. He finds 4 rivals; a cocky American, a Posh Frenchman, a Stoic Russian, and a care-free Chinese teenager. Hmmm, America, Russia, France, and China, where have I head those names put together before….(also: sorry Britain, someone had to go!). The story will not blow your mind. It mostly goes from fight to fight. Tonaly, it’s a complete 180 from the rest of the Gundam franchise. So traditionalist won’t really enjoy it. And the animation hasn’t help up in the strictest sense.

Watch it?: Great Fun (4/5)

MVP: Domon Kasshu

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Pilot of the GOD GUNDAM

Best Episode: Ep45. “Farewell Master: Master Asia’s Last Breath” (master vs student)

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