Archive for the anime & manga Category

Anime review #3: unlikely greats

Posted in anime & manga with tags , on February 4, 2009 by freakychinaman

I know a lot of people have started to get sick of all the anime posts, but I’ve been spending most of my time writing up a research report so I only have limited brain power for this, just be grateful there’s anything new at all.

Ouran High School Host Club: 10/10

Haruhi, a girl from the grass-roots gains a scholarship to Ouran High, a prestigous school for the extremely wealthy. In some unusual circumstances she is mistaken for a guy and was forced into the Ouran High Host Club where a whole bunch of weird and wacky things happen and everyone besides the 2 on the right fall for her.

The so called ‘host club’ is pretty much a high class male escort service, and why so many girls hang out there all the time is a mystery. The girls also seem to get turned on by everything… if only girls I know were that easy… Anyways, as screwed up as everything sounds, it’s a really good show and quite hilarious. It’s mainly for girls so there are a few cheezy bits but I can live with it, and it’s not the whole “I love you, you love me, let’s cry a lot” type so don’t worry. [though you could end up with the phrase “kiss kiss fall in love” stuck in your head from the intro song…]

Busou Renkin: 8.5/10

The show is about a war between alchemist warriors and the homunculus (beings created by alchemy). The human warriors can only kill the homunculus using ‘busou renkin’, which sort of means ‘battle alchemy’, which are weapons with special powers and take shape depending on their users.

The theme and the elements seem a bit cliche, but the story turns out pretty well and the characters develop pretty well and most characters have more dimension in their personalities than “I must save my friends” or “I will destroy soul society, which apparently isn’t a real world”. It’s got a good balance between constant action and comedy, something I find quite essential these days. The fights are well animated and you don’t get the dragonball Z fighting where giant beams get fired and everything just disappears.

Can’t really think of any others that fit this catergory, so I’ll leave it at that.

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Don’t eat where you pee I always say… :

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Anime Review #2

Posted in anime & manga with tags , , on December 8, 2008 by freakychinaman

I showed the good ones last time, so I thought I’d show some that I think aren’t that good (you’d notice they still have a moderate rating, because I just won’t finish a show if it really sucked that bad..).

Gundam Seed: 5/10

Ok, this isn’t that bad a show by itself at the beginning, but the lack of an original story and a bunch of gundams that pretty much look the same is just very annoying. The Jap voice acting also makes people want to hurl their remotes at the screen when the guys cry… seriously, it sounds like a gagged cat trying to swallow cotton… The lack of originality also goes on later in the sequel: Gundam Seed destiny, where ‘freedom’ gundam is upgraded to ‘strike freedom’, and ‘justice’ gundam to ‘infinite justice’… fuck… and the whole “we have secretly been developing all these weapons, we just haven’t been bothered to bring them out when we needed them, and waited until someone came to steal them”… (seriously, almost all the suits the main characters use are stolen from somewhere…). The animators also get very cheap and lazy, and they just keep replaying stock footage over and over and over again… which I reckon they might as well not put it in at all… but they did gain a few more points from the music, which I think is great (TM Revolution FTW!!!).

Bleach: 4/10

This show started out very well admittedly, I liked the concept and the first ark was awesome. But like all shows that drag on for too long and producers just want to squeeze as much out of a successful show as possible, the stories have started to drag and repeat (ie “WHAT IS THIS CRAZY RIATSU?!” “I am a new powerful enemy that can easily crush you, but I think I’ll play around with you first” “omg! he flashed across me and cut my shoulder, BANKAI!!!” “omg! there’s no possible way that you could’ve beaten me, but logic doesn’t work here, I die now!”… whatever, you get the point). The animators here are just lazy to begin with, and the fight scenes or comprized of constant weapons locks and teleportation, the only cool thing is the revealling of the special abilities (i.e. it’s boring after that…), and even that’s getting a bit unoriginal, having Ichigo’s bankai being a less stylish sword with even more flashing around… The planning of the show also adds to the disappointment, with about 20% of the run time dedicated to recaps… in which not that much has happened in the first place… just lots of talking with their weapons out… The movies aren’t great, just extra long episodes without even improving the artwork… feels like dragonball Z all over again…

Jigoku Shoujo 4/10

Once again, another show that had a good original concept. The gist of it is people can log onto a website, type in the person they hate, and if they accept you they will come to you and give you a doll that you can use to drag that person down to hell, only catch is that after you death you will go to hell too. The artwork is decent and great music, unfortunately the stories were very restricted, having individual stories per episode ( save the last 3 or so) with a very linear progression, you know pretty much exactly what’s going to happen and almost when as well (the girl says the same lines every episode! the voice actor probably just had to come in for half a day to do all her recordings for the entire show!). The artwork was good except it didn’t go far enough to make it scary and didn’t have any impressive special effects, which was a big theme in it; the fundemental philosophies and plots are very shallow and it’s just single-mindedly pushing the concept of “revenge is bad”. More of a kiddy show really, heck I’d prefer pokemon over this… great music though…(like… intro and ending…)

Anime Reviews #1

Posted in anime & manga with tags , , , , , , , on November 30, 2008 by freakychinaman

Been watching a fair few shows lately (downloaded so much I ran out of quota and had to suffer 10 days of dial up speed…), so I thought I’d do an entry here for the otaku’s.

Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion: 10/10

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One of the best shows I’ve seen. The basic storyline is set in a parallel universe where Japan has been invaded by Britannia, which was the leading world power at the time. Lelouch (dude in the middle), a former prince of Britannia whose identity is kept a secret due to political problems in the royal family, one day meets C.C. (green hair), who gives him the power of absolute command over anyone that comes into eye contact with him. He then leads a rebellion against Britannia etc etc.

The story is very good, sort of a cross between deathnote (with a lot of tactics and psychological manipulations, and Lelouch also reminds me of Light) and gundam seed (with the whole ‘best friends killing each other because they’re on opposite sides and they get their friends killed”, as well as the giant robots, which have freaking awesome designs), with a lot of philosophies I tend to agree with, and a plot that’s not too linear and you could keep guessing what happens next. Has a lot of melancholy and love scenes that I find very touching, and the use of vocal music is great. The battles are great, not just constant laser spamming and stock footage, and you actually see them fight. The character designs are very dynamic and you don’t get many of those morons or bitches that annoy you so much you want to put a bullet through there heads…

Only thing that made me enjoy it less was the fact that the first season ended on a cliffhanger, so I had to wait for ages to find out what happens afterwards. And the whole plot about killing god, I sort of got the gist of it but I still didn’t really get it, if someone could tell me it’ll be great.

Lucky Star: 10/10

(I know it may seem like I’m giving these out too easily, but then again I wouldn’t be writing a review for the tons of anime I watch unless it’s really good or really crap)

A very cutesy, heart-warming show. Doesn’t really have a storyline, just a whole lot of random pop culture references and gags. The shows follows the lives of Konata (Blue), Tsukasa (far left), Kagami (center purple), and Miyuki (far right, pretty much covered, sorry I can’t be bothered getting a better pic), and several more others with very different and funny personalities, involving tons of anime and manga references (such as code geass, gundam, keroro, Initial D etc), as well as other references we tend to relate to like how to eat ice cream and procrastinating habits 😛

This show is a great laugh and there’s bound to be something in there for everyone, although it’s a lot more fun if you know a lot about anime and manga and Japanese culture in general (heck, even I don’t get all the references in there…). It”s suitable for all ages and it’s not totally a chick flick, so guys can watch it without having to become insecure about their sexuality. It’s relatively short, only 24 episodes, with 1 OVA which I found pretty weak, only an extra long episode and didn’t really concentrate much on the characters (so more like situation gags). An especially good show when you just want something to kill some time or just don’t want to concentrate on anything.

Hellsing Ultimate: 9.5/10

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Pretty much my all time favourite show so far, both anime and manga…. but why doesn’t is have full marks? Because Kouta Hirano is a lazy bastard!!!! and it takes him 2 months to publish a chapter in the manga and like 3 to finish an episode in the anime! and that pisses me off so I took off half a mark for it.

The storyline is set in modern day where vampires and other monsters are still threatening people. And it is the job of the Hellsing agency, founded by the original Dr Abraham Van Hellsing, to exterminate them. Their greatest weapon: none other than Dracula himself (who was tamed and is now called Alucard… and if you don’t get it it’s ‘dracula’ spelt backwards….). The story unfolds and ultimately leads to the involvement of the Vatican and a legion of undead Nazis, and a hell of a lot of blood and guts… seriously, that by itself is worth watching already! Of course, this is a bit sadistic and definitely not suitable for children.

People, please don’t get it wrong, there was a previously censored Hellsing anime that was directed by someone else and didn’t at all follow the original manga story, and it totally sucked. The new OVA has great artwork with a good mix of CGI effects. This shows takes things to the extreme, from the abilities and personalities of the characters, to the amount of blood and gore you can fit into a single scene. I always say, if you are an immortal who is invicible, act like it, be arrogant and dramatic, don’t go “you can’t hurt me, but I’m gona go through the effort of trying to defend myself anyway!” This is an epic show that pushes how insane the world can be, and heck, actually made Christianity interesting (made John Paul sounds like a bad ass!… not like I don’t like the old him…).

….. and you know what? I can’t think of a crap show I’ve watched lately, so I’ll end it at that 🙂