Tag Archives: Anime

Manyū Hiken-chō

Type: or “Magic Breast Secret Sword Scroll” (I’m not joking)

Synopsis: Think equivalent exchange, but with boobs. In Tokugawa Japan, a young kinoichi steals her clan’s boob stealing technique in an effort to change the world. A world where a person’s boob size determines their social rank. Except for men, who are still lords and heads of families under this system. A system that would logically only benefit women. Huh….Well, whatever, BOOBIES!!

Pros: Magic Breast Secret Sword Scroll, because why not?, is a fairly serviceable boob anime. The set up has out main character, Chifusa, traveling Japan as she tries to outrun “assassins” sent to get back the scroll she stole. Except that instead of dying, she runs the risk of having her boobs shrunken. For about six episodes, Chifusa uses the scroll’s technique to not only shrink boobs, but also absorb their power. Meaning that every episode we see Chifusa’s boobs get bigger, with sexy results. The show stays fairly consistent with it’s main gimmick: the show revolves around boobs because it’s world revolves around boobs. And it takes many instances to point out the silliness of such a world, often with ridiculous fan service. Bouncy bouncy indeed.

Cons: I mean, it’s kinda a one joke series, isn’t it? Throughout the show, we will see boobs bounce, jiggle, and even twirl. We see them get grouped, sucked, ties up, measured, weighed, etc. The joke gets a little stale. Then there’s the plot, which has an identify crisis. While it’s mostly a boob comedy, the show tries to throw in some clan intrigue in Chifusa’s feud with the Manyu clan. The clan’s head is Chifusa’s father, who coldly and ruthlessly sends assassins to ruin his daughter. But having a male villain in a show that focuses so much on breasts and women’s relationship with them feels incongruous.  For example, towards the end of the show Chifusa learns how to give breasts, not just take them. The secret to the technique is maternal love, a fundamental form of femininity. So it would have made a lot more sense if Chifusa’s main villain was a Woman who lacked maternal love and took breasts, and therefore femininity, away. It would have set up a nice metaphorical conflict between the positive femininity and negative femininity. I guess masculinity could also be interpreted as a lack of femininity, but it would be too simplistic to frame this argument through gender binary–What the hell am I doing!? This is a dumb anime about about big boobs! If you likes boobs and moaning then watch it, if not, then don’t!

Watch it: Oh, and the opening is terrible. (3/5)

MVP: Chifusa Manyū

Boobs are cool.

Best Episode: Ep.8 “Chifusa Imprisoned” (Lord Hatomune is the best!)

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SHIMONETA: A Boring World Where the Concept of Dirty Jokes Doesn’t Exist

Type: NSFW

Synopsis: In a world, where smut has been outlawed. Where phrases like “putting your yogurt tosser into the butter boat” is blaspheme. A world of prudes. A world of abstinence. Only one person will be able to bring back the raunchy. Follow our heroes on their trip towards an uncertain end. THIS SPRING, STAY TUNED FOR HIGH SCHOOL KIDS DISTRIBUTING DIRTY PICTURES AROUND SCHOOL CAMPUS AS A FORM OF PEACEFUL PROTEST.

Pros: Where has this been all my life. Why was I not informed of this anime sooner! What am I…what am I even doing here!? Shimoneta is half brilliant, half stupid, and all parts entertaining. The basic premise is that Japan has outlawed lewdness in all forms, forcing our protagonists to rebel through pervy behavior and inappropriate language. And I mean INAPPROPRIATE. I watched the English Dubb, because sometimes this world is a beautiful place. The words that came out of Ayeme Kajou might be THE filthiest collection of saying that I have ever hear. I did not know that the English language was capable of making that many euphemisms for sex, penises, or vaginas. Aside from the admittedly sophomoric charm of the show’s content (sex, masturbation, etc), the program does have a good message. Kajou’s group, SOX, fights in the name of personal freedom and sexual education. They don’t necessarily want to bring the government down, they just want to be explore the subject of sex without punished. Which is a good thing to say. Sexual education is important. And while issuing every teenager a box of sex toys and a porn subscription isn’t necessarily a good option, neither is pretending that lust doesn’t exist. The show argues as much. You have characters like Fuwa who are so ignorant about sex that they need to study the reproductive habits of bugs to better understand it. Or you get extreme cases like Anna, who becomes a sexual deviant after her first taste of physical romance because she has no background knowledge to help moderate her new urges. And as a side note, I liked the organic relationship that developed between Tanuchiki and Ayeme, especially since it’s based on comradery  and not idealization.

Cons: I mean, this is basically smut. Well, that’s too harsh. I’ll downgrade to softcore porn, not unlike American Pie or Not Another Teen Movie. You know, the classics. Aside from Ayeme’s amazingly dirty dialogue, a lot of the jokes come from Anna. After episode 3, Anna becomes a sex maniac who constantly tries to share her “love nectar” with Tanichiki after an accidental kiss. This girl is so turned on whenever she even sees Tanichiki that she immediately undergoes vasocongestion, causing her to secrete a combination of carbohydrates, amino acids, proteins, and other acids produced by the normal lactobacillus bacteria. Clean up in aisle 3, am I right! Normally I would say this goes overboard, but given the context of the show, it actually fits right in. I do kind of think that it’s messed up that Tanuchiki losses interest in Anna after her “pure image” is shattered, but the exaggerated nature of her character change makes it work. Story wise, I feel that the last arc involving Gathered Fabric is not very strong, and I didn’t really like them as antagonists. I would have been perfectly happy if the show had followed a scheme-by-scheme narrative.

Watch it?: Does a footlong taste better with mustard on it? (5/5)

MVP: Anna Nishikinomiya

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L-O-V-E  N-E-C-T-O-R.

Best Episode: EP. 1 “Whom Public Order and Morality Serve?” (I have my own favorite [ep4], but I feel that this one tells you everything you need to know about the show)

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Lord Marksman and Vanadis

Type: Vanadis also means Freyja, the sexy war goddess.

Synopsis: In an anime that I thought was based on a game, but is actually based on a light novel series, we see, well we see a bunch of stuff. To keep it simple: Lord Tigre is the count of a peaceful but valuable region who grabs the attention of many people, including several War Maidens, powerful female warriors chosen to wield mythical weapons. Through a bunch of medieval warfare, Tigre and crew are able to defeat an evil count who tries to usurp the throne.

Pros: You know, for a series that mainly portrays women, powerful women at that, I talked a surprising amount about the only male lead. The patriarchy is a funny thing…Anyway, one of the best things about this anime is the level of competency that all the characters show throughout the series. For example, the War Maiden’s Elen and Mila are portrayed as skilled and powerful warriors with tactical minds for battle. And they rarely, if ever, need Tigre to “rescue” them, even in the mist of battle. In fact, the the Elen and Mila  fight alongside Tigre, often back to back or shoulder to shoulder, and never really lose their sense of purpose. Elen and Mila never abandon or consider abandoning their posts to live with Tigre. I really appreciated this character trait, since it gets really tiring to see characters give up their current goals all for the sake of an infatuation. On the flip side, I also really liked that Tigre has actual skills and goals as well. He wasn’t just a “good, average guy” harem protagonist. He was incredibly skilled with a bow (usually portrayed as a female-only weapon), and a avid hunter/tracker. These skills are consistent throughout the series, and explain why most characters would be initially impressed by him, and then grow to admire him after getting to know him. This made Elen and Mila’s predictable romantic interests for him feel organic. He also loses his fist battle with Elen, which was a good way to define both their skill sets. He held his own for a little bit, but smartly lost to the supernatural war maiden.

Cons: Boob anime. This is a boob anime. Look at Elen. Look at her lieutenant. What are they feeding these girls!? Aside from that, this anime is only a small taste into the light novel series. Sorta like a very long commercial. It’s not like the show shills the rest of the series with annoying references to “that man” or tries to foreshadow the next story arc at the finale of the anime. But there are a lot of things we never see. For example, there are said to be about 8 War Maidens, but we only get to see 5 in the series. Two are main characters, one’s a cameo character, one’s a brief villain, and one shows up here and there to be all menacing. The other 3 are shown in the opening, but nowhere else. The looked cool, but too bad! Learn to read pleb! Outside of that, the story is also a bit hard to follow. Things tend to move from one battle to another, as different factions are fighting for the throne, with Tigre caught in the middle. (P.s. One interesting tid-bit: In the show, Tigre is given a magic bow that allows him to have power equal to, or possible greater than, the War Maidens. I just found that to be a bit…interesting).

Watch it?: Give it a go (4/5)

MVP: Tigre

He also tends to grab boobs when he’s asleep. Some sort of hunting instinct.

Best Episode: Ep.2 “The Return Home” (Tigre and Elen join forces!)

 

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My Hero Academia (Season 2)

Type: Also known as That 2017’s Show

Synopsis: You get it, because the television program That 70’s Show was a thing in the 2000’s, and My Hero Academia was really popular in 2017? Yeah? Well…I-I thought I was being clever and, ah, let’s just move on. This is My Hero Academia, also know as HeroAca, Boku No Hero, HeroAcademia, season 2. It’s still pretty good.

Pros: It’s still pretty good. With the season bumped up to 24 episodes, My Hero Academia covers about 3 story arcs. The Sport’s Festival Arc, the Hero Killer Arc, and the Final Exam Arc. While the first season focused on exploring the setting from our protagonist Deku/Midoriya’s point of view, this season focuses on fleshing out the extended cast. Instead of talking about my favorite characters (Froppy is best girl, and Tokoyami is surprising top tier) I’d like to point something out. What this season did very well was establishing a clear and shared goal for each of the supporting characters. Each character want’s to be a “hero,” for their own reasons. While their motivations may differ, they each have the same goal that audience can understand. Who didn’t cry when we learned that Ochako wanted to be a hero to help her family out? Or Todoroki’s whole deal? Hell, I even sympathized with Hitoshi, the guy that wanted to be a hero even though he looks creepy. Normally, a lot of shonen stories reserved having a “dream” to the main characters. And while, realistically, not everyone would want to be King of the Pirates or Hokage, it’s nice to see such a distinct class of characters all striving for the same goal. It makes the comradery between the characters seem more natural. A lot of episodes were about pairing characters together, or contrasting characters against one another. This even happens with the antagonists, as the show introduces fan favorite, Stain, a “hero killer” who’s more of an anti-hero, which is why he clashes with the show’s main villain group. The show also explain more about the power One-For-All, and some implied multi-generational lore, but that’s going to have to wait until season 3.

Cons: The only real not great thing about season 2 was a 10 minutes segments detailing Froggy’s internship in episode 19. It felt filler-y to me. But outside of that, nothing particularly wrong with this season. The intro’s were good. The comedy was on point. The action was well handled. The character moments were incredible. As one of the “it shows” of 2017, don’t expect an artistic masterpiece, or a watershed series or anything. But My Hero Academia continues to be a stellar shonen series.

Watch it?: Yes. Yes you should. (4/5)

MVP: Ochako Uraraka

She really is a good kid.

MVP: Ep.13-18 The Hero Killer Arc (Internships, Team Work, Anti-Hero, it has it all! Plus, I didn’t really talk about it in the review)

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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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11 Eyes

Type: Yes, this is a late 2000’s anime alright

11eyesanime

Synopsis: Based on a visual novel? Check. Main protagonist is obviously the main protagonist thanks to his over the top eye patch? Check. High school kids killing demons? Check. Things get surprisingly dark in the middle? Check. Overly-complicated to the point of having a character WRITE A DIAGRAM to explain something. You’re goddamn right it’s a check.

Pros: Given the overexposure of light novel anime in the 2010’s, it’s a bit nostalgic to look at an anime back in the time where Visual Novels were the lazy production company’s answer to success. The anime is pretty stereotypical for the time: kids fighting demons. You have all the usual players as well, like the main character with a unique power (a magic eye!), an overly feminine love interest, a swords-woman with unrelated magical powers, a sweet blond girl with a split personality, and a cocky rebel who doesn’t work well with others. The plot does break the mold a bit by having moments of shock or drama. This can range from a sudden death to misunderstanding. I particularly liked what they did with Yuka, who goes on full on Yandere as the series progresses. It’s these darker moments that elevate the show from it’s default mediocrity.

Cons: As stated above, this show fells by the numbers. It has a generic cast, generic villains, and generic story lines. It’s saving grace is that it allows characters to die, or to express their sorrow/grief in interesting manners. For example, you have Takahisa, my least favorite character, who is the first of the main cast to die. As a result, his love interest Yukiko does into a suicidal rage, leading to her death as well. While I had absolutely no interest in either of these characters or their relationship, their deaths and reactions grabbed my attention. So you can imagine my reaction when good characters like Misuzu and Kakeru interacted. In fact, Misuzu and Kakeru are a fairly competent example of how to pace romantic/sexual tension, and is one of the few things that makes 11 Eyes shine. Because it sure ain’t the overly confusing plot with way too many elements to juggle. I’m talking flashbacks, time travel, parallel worlds, like three different kinds of magic (p.s. I check, and the index girl in this is not related to A Certain Magical Index in any way), and just, just so many contrivances…

Watch it?: This is surprisingly comparable to Shakugan no Shana. Probably due to the weak plot and monsters (3/5)

MVP: The Kakeru, Misuzu, and Yuka Love Triangle

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It’s not cheating if it’s the end of the world and your bae’s insane, right?

Best Episode: Ep.8 “Witching Hour” (the dark turning point!)

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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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Rumbling Hearts

Type: “Does Everything I do Have to Hurt Someone?”

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Synopsis: Once upon a time there lived a girl named Haruka, who had a best friend named Mitsuki. They both loved a boy named Takayuki very much, but he only loved one of them. Then one day, Haruka fell into a deep sleep and couldn’t wake up. Takayuki’s heart was broken, but Mitsuki helped him but it back together. She never left his side, even though part of his heart still remained with Haruka. What else could she do, she loves him…

Pros: Ok, so real talk. I kinda got into this show. I found this anime soap opera genuinely engaging. Sue me. The basic premise is: Takayuki, Haruka, and Mitsuki are high school friends stuck in a love triangle. Then one day, Haruka gets into an accident and falls into a coma. Takayuki and Mistsuki start dating, even though Takayuki isn’t fully committed. Three years later, Haruka wakes up and causes Takayuki and Mistuki’s relationship to become really strained. That’s basically the gist of it without giving away too much. I would love to explore the subtleties of the show, but that would spoil the experience. The strength of the show comes from the portrayal of Takayuki and Mitsuki, both as individuals and as a couple. More so with Mitsuki, who I found really relatable. You see, when Haruka wakes up, Takayuki basically begins an emotional affair with her. And Mitsuki’s reactions to this are all too understandable. She tries to ignore it, she tries to overcompensate physically and emotionally, she even verges on alcoholism. She spirals as she comes to the realization that the person she loves has stronger feelings for someone else, and probably always did. Both Mitsuki and Takayuki are guilty of trying to cling to the past, with Haruka being a not to subtle living memory that holds them back from the future.

Cons: The show has a good beginning, and a strong ending, but a weak middle. This is because the beginning sets everything up, the ending ties everything together, but the middle has to let the story breath. And it takes long breaths. The middle of the story, about ep4-9, has to show Mistuki and Takayuki’s relationship slowly deteriorate. So you get a lot of awkward silences and montages of everyone looking sad. It’s necessary, but also skimmable. The ending, however, really sticks the landing. So much many character arcs come to a head in ep10-14 that I want to talk about, but it would spoil them!! Even sweet, stereotypical Haruka gets to react to her situation in a realistic manner. The show does have it’s faults. The story is a soap opera, and fairly predictable. All the heroines seem to love Takayuki for because it’s anime and “he’s a nice guy.” But I saw how he lived with Mitsuki, and honestly…he seems like a dick. He’s distant, emotionally self-centered, and rather boring. But dammit if the story’s not engrossing. I partly attribute this to the fact that main cast are all in their early 20’s instead of in high school, so the drama can be taken a little more seriously. Although I do admit that the character designs do make everyone look older than they should. Takayuki and Mistuki are suppose to be 20-21, but they look 25. I watched the English dub, which was great, although Takayuki’s performance came off as a but wooden. I do have to mention, however, that I have never heard the phrase “baby” in the romantic sense this much in an anime before. Since Takayuki and Mistuki are adults in a relationship, they tend to sleep together a few times in the show (nothing explicit pervs!), so the phrase comes up. That’s not a bad thing, it just tickled me a little.

Watch it?: If I even did Anime Audio Commentaries, this show would be one of them (4/5)

MVP: Mitsuki

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You can’t help who you love, and that hurts sometimes.

Best Episode: Ep10-14 The Ending Arc (Though I’m not sure how I feel about Mitsuki and Takayuki’s ultimate fate…)

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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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xxxHolic

Type: A lot more lore than you think

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Synopsis: A boy named Watanuki visits a mysterious magic shop to because he attracts spirits. The owner of the shop, Yuko, agrees to help him in-exchange for becoming the shop’s part time cook/butler/errand boy. This sounds like a good deal, except for the fact that Yuko constantly sends him on supernatural-related missions Personally, I think Yuko is swindling the kid, but maybe it’s all just a coincidence…

Pros: The anime functions on a case-of-the-week story structure. Every episode deals the Watanuki and Yuko “helping” someone with a minor problem, like being a compulsive liar, or having an internet addiction. Something these people should really be going to a mental health clinic for, not a magic shop. And while these clients sometimes do have a spirit hanging around them, a lot of times it’s because the spirits were attracted to their negativity. They generally aren’t the cause of it. As such, Yuko often had to deal with the person’s personal issues rather an exorcise any evil spirits. The show had good characters to deal with these stories. Yuko is enigmatic and wise, but also lazy with a witty sense of humor. Watanuki is loud and complains a lot, but he’s generally a kind soul. These characters make the show’s predictable pace interesting to watch, and are the real reason to watch the show. (p.s. I’m not super cray about the lanky character designs, but Yuko’s outfits are always on point).

Cons: As with any case-of-the-week anthology show, things get boring and repetitive fast. Every week, some specifically female customer comes in, goes into self-denial over the problem they came to fix, and then Yuko fixes that problem. I actually found myself skipping through a lot of these episodes. And there were a few times when it even felt like a chore to watch the show. This season also has no real ending. It just ends. The only saving grace from the monotony of these episodes are the spotlight episodes with Watanuki and Domeki. The show has a running joke that Wataniki hates Domeki because he’s madly jealous at his popularity, but Yuko keeps finding ways to put them together because Domeki can repel spirits, and thus protect Watanuki. The two make a good comedic pair, with Domeki’s stoic personality contrasting well with Wataniki’s high-strung reactions. Now, the show does have one weird caveat: xxxHolic is actually part of a larger shared universe created by CLAMP, the all female writing group. This CLAMPaverse also includes Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicles, Card Capture Sakura, and sometimes Blood C. From what I gather, you don’t really need to watch any of these to enjoy xxxHolic, but Tsubasa at least apparently helps.

Watch it?: It’s boring  (2/5)

MVP: Watanuki

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Complain, complain, complain….

Best Episode: Ep.19 “Unreasonable” (a fun episode! snowball fights!)

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