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BB Battlefront photo
BB Battlefront

I can't wait for Blood Blockade Battlefront

Looks like a bloody good time
Feb 20
// Hiroko Yamamura
The upcoming Studio Bones series, Blood Blockade Battlefront is looking pretty darned good. The story is based on Yasuhiro Nightow's popular manga, which began soon after he finished Trigun Maximum. Anime character designs a...
Music photo

A Daily Dose of Music: Old School Thursdays

Your week needs a little alchemy
Jun 26
// Hiroko Yamamura
This week we travel back a little over a decade to a little known show, Fullmetal Alchemist. Ok, you know I'm kidding here right? FMA served as the entry point to anime for many people, with its unique mix of fantasy, magic,...

Review: Blast of Tempest S2

Apr 29 // Karen Mead
Blast of Tempest DVD Complete Second Season Publisher: Aniplex of America Release Date: Feb. 25, 2014 MSRP: $74.98 Blast of Tempest is a fairly highbrow anime, barring some fanservice here and there. It's inspired by Shakespeare's The Tempest, something explicitly name-dropped several times, and several characters love quoting Shakespeare whenever the opportunity arises. There's a sense of theatricality to the whole thing that's difficult to explain; it's not over-acted, but there's a whiff of old-school, classic drama to it that makes the occasional acquiescence to typical anime humor feel somewhat out of place. To its credit, the show mixes things up substantially in its second half, but not without drawbacks; things I thought I knew about the series based on the first 12 episodes evaporate, yet the new things that emerge don't necessarily go anywhere. In the first season, exiled mage Hakaze was trying to fight against usurpers from her own clan remotely, using what little magic she could conjure on the remote desert island where she had been stranded. To do so she enlisted the help of Mahiro, a volatile teen with a propensity for violence, and Yoshino, a seemingly gentle young man with a dark side of his own. Though the world is falling apart around them due to some apocalyptic nonsense (frankly it's not worth trying to explain), Mahiro and Yoshino have already suffered due to the recent death of Mahiro's mysterious sister Aika, who happens to also have been Yoshino's secret girlfriend. The two boys, with the help of Hakaze, might save the world from the evil Tree of Exodus, but in truth, they really just want to find out who killed their sister/girlfriend. It was an interesting set-up; Hakaze, by far the most powerful character, was put in a situation where her options were severely limited, and she had to rely on other people to do her dirty work. Mahiro and Yoshino are ostensibly the heroes because they're fighting the forces of evil on her behalf, but really, they just want to know who killed Aika; saving the world is pretty much incidental to both of them. Furthermore, the villain Samon (whom I always want to call "Salmon," because I'm a horrible person) isn't even necessarily evil; for all we know, he could have been right to exile Hakaze when he had the chance. It was a series that wasn't necessarily riveting (although the end-of-season standoff at Mt. Fuji was pretty epic), but it was always intriguing at the very least. In the second half, all the major characters are on the same team; there are hints at dissension among the ranks, but those are red herrings that mostly go nowhere. Hakaze becomes a much more typical female lead who wastes time fretting over her feelings for Yoshino, and is generally far less interesting than she was at the beginning. The Mage of Exodus, Hakaze's magical counterpart who is totally necessary for saving the world, basically falls into the group's lap with little explanation. Characters that seemed to have promise at the beginning kind of fade into the background, relegated to menial tasks. I'm still not sure who catsuit-wearing Evangeline Yamamoto was, even though she's actually critically important to the plot. Lest it seem like it's all downhill, the show does do a good job resolving the mystery of Aika, the most intriguing plot thread, in its second half. In addition to learning who killed her, we get a satisfying resolution to the whole "Mahiro never knew that Yoshino dated his sister" arc, and scenes that involve Aika are smartly written and fun. Still, I don't know if the show ever properly compensates for the fact that its most interesting character is dead before the story even started; Yoshino, with a laid-back attitude that hides his manipulative nature, shows glimmers of being interesting, but the show doesn't flesh him out  as much as I would have liked. Hakaze starts out interesting, then becomes tedious. Unfortunately, the best characters are the ones we don't get to spend much time with. The mage-on-mage fights (or mage-on-aircraft carrier fights; it happens) are fun, but they aren't plentiful enough to recommend to action fans on that basis, nor is the animation for them noteworthy. The whole show has average to above-average production values, yet for some reason, very little stood out to me. A lot of the show is dialogue, theorizing about the relationship between the magical Trees of Genesis and Exodus, and while some of these conversations are interesting, they're likely to try many a viewer's patience before the series' end. In the end, I'm just not sure what Blast of Tempest was trying to do. You could say that it was an anime retelling of The Tempest, except -- assuming I'm remembering the play correctly, from way back in high school English -- the story doesn't have all that much in common with it. I see far more parallels to Milton's Paradise Lost, which isn't mentioned even once. Furthermore, was all that scheming that seemingly went nowhere meant to be misdirection, and if so, did we really need so much of it? Instead of feeling complete, the second season feels like a bunch of different elements inexpertly cobbled together; for that reason, the final confrontation lacks impact, even though some of what's going on is rather clever. It's all just too muddled. It's not a bad show by any means, but the show only seems to fire on all cylinders when dealing with Aika in flashbacks; the present is always dull in comparison. Add to the equation that this is a pretty bare bones release -- with no dub, and only clean OP/EDs for extras -- and it becomes hard to recommend with a clear conscience. Still, warts and all, I feel like I have to lean towards the positive with Blast of Tempest. This show made me think, and even if half those thoughts were "What's going on?" that's still a lot more than I can say for many anime with pretensions of being intellectual. Plus, the whole Aika storyline is worthwhile, and it does take up a significant portion of the screentime here. If you're looking for a consistently taut, action-packed thrill ride, pass this series by; but if you want something a little more cerebral in the realm of contemporary fantasy and are willing to overlook a few flaws, this is probably for you. 7.0 – Good. Films or shows that get this score are good, but not great. These could have been destined for greatness, but were held back by their flaws. While some may not enjoy them, fans of the genre will definitely love them.  
Blast of Tempest photo
O Brave New World, that has such tree mages in it
There's something inscrutable about Blast of Tempest. Even now that I've had a few days to digest everything and figure out the answers to most of my lingering story questions, I still feel that there's something about the sh...

Annotated Anime: Captain Earth episode 2 & 3

Apr 22 // Elliot Gay
The next day, Tsutomu reveals that he's going to have all four of the youngsters stay with him, much to Mr. Salty Dog's chagrin. Things go well enough; Daichi gets to bond with Teppei for the first time in years, and Hana and Akari get to know one another too. There's little drama to be had, especially for our hero. He's a much happier youngster despite how crazy the current circumstances are. Of course, Salty Dog will have nothing of it.  Amara, seemingly the leader of the Kill-T-Gang, blasts toward Earth with the hopes of encountering the Daichi's big ole' robot. The catch? He's the same jerk who killed our hero's father nine years prior. Salty Dog decides to use this information to manipulate Daichi into launching into space inside of a still-damaged robot. As is to be expected in these kinds of situations, things go very poorly. With Daichi on the ropes, Hana sings a song, and Teppei appears in space as a giant robot. Big boom booms happen, and Amara is sent packing. If my homegrown synopsis seems rather goofy, you'll have to forgive me. Everything that happens in Captain Earth is so positively ludicrous that regardless of how hard I try to phrase things, it all comes off sounding ridiculous. For what it's worth, I don't necessarily believe that to be a bad thing. Outside of a few special cases, most giant robot anime have a penchant for non-explanations and made up mumbo jumbo. I wasn't quite sure what to think of the characters in the first episode of Captain Earth, but I'm starting to get a feel for them. Daichi comes off as a lot brighter and more interesting in the last two episodes. It certainly helps that he's now surrounded by a colorful cast of characters, Akari in particular. Her entrance was definitely the non-action highlight of episode three, with her overly dramatic speech and all. Teppei and Hana are fairly generic in their mysterious ways, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't interested in why there seem to be weird randomly appearing robots all over the place. I still have no idea what's going on in this show, but for now I'm okay with that. To be fair, that's mostly because Captain Earth is just so goddamn pretty to look at. Episode two and three feature relatively brief action scenes, but they certainly don't skimp on the strong animation. Missiles and lasers fly about the darkness of space, things explode, close quarters combat is had. It all looks great, and it highlights why I was so excited to see Bones do another robot show. If nothing else, the eye candy is strong with this one. It certainly doesn't hurt that the whole thing takes place on a beautiful island; I have a huge soft spot for this kind of setting.  Ultimately, I have no idea if Captain Earth is going to make any sense. As it stands, it's a fun show that's been delivering on the desired action quotient, but is perhaps a bit too mysterious for its own good. Hopefully in the coming weeks we'll start to see that stuff unravel. For now though, I'm content with what Bones is delivering. For now. Your move, Captain Earth.
AA: Captain Earth 2&3 photo
In which lots of science-y things happen
I can't remember the last time I watched a mech anime with so much nonsensical techno babble. Bones' latest stab at the genre, Captain Earth, seems to have no qualms with throwing out made-up words and leaving them undefined ...

First Impressions: Soul Eater NOT

Apr 15 // Jeff Chuang
Based on the manga of the same name, Soul Eater NOT is also created by the same studio that brought you the original Soul Eater, Bones. Visually, it's similar. When the going gets rough, upbeat music pumps through the speakers as Meisters pose confidently with their transformed weapons, doing battle in style. Well, at one episode, Soul Eater NOT so far is more about the demo than putting pride or life on the line. Our lead character makes a pretty interesting transition right at the start of the episode; it's almost like a page out of X-Men when Tsugumi suddenly has her weapon powers manifest, and now she's a special person in society's eyes. Thankfully, we fast forward to the Death City school where the rest of Tsugumi's story will play out, and away from the mundane society that she comes from. In typical Soul Eater style, Soul Eater NOT features a pretty diverse cast of eccentric characters. It seems that Tsugumi will befriend two female Meisters around her age, and some kind of strange relationship will play out involving two Meisters with one Weapon. Will Tsugumi choose the airy but oddly affable Meme? Or will Tsugumi go along with the stately and masterful tsundere Anya? I suppose we have the whole season to find out. For most, the setting alone doesn't Soul Eater make; its cool cast of Meisters and Weapons are the most memorable aspect. To that end, Maka and Soul immediately make their appearance, along with Sid as a teacher. Many other characters poke their heads in throughout the first episode, but it's nice to see Maka and Soul having real speaking lines. It's a precarious balance of having enough lines for our new heroines, too, because the old guard shouldn't get all the attention. To that degree I think Soul Eater NOT has a good grasp on what should keep people's attention, as the pilot episode features a few cool animated sequences with large polearms doing business. The token bad guys are comical, as if to just make a point about where Tsugumi is at in terms of her skills, and a little more details about what it means to be a Weapon. The snappy music and typical stylish, Bones-style OP/ED sequences push Soul Eater NOT as an attractive package that's decidedly the opposite of the shounen formula. At the same time, even without the grim-dark, Soul Eater NOT is still a few steps removed from afterschool-tea-and-cake kind of the cute-girls-do-cute-things tale. There's a decidedly compelling, if rather familiar, story that keeps things moving along. By holding back the premise a little, Soul Eater NOT creates enough intrigue to keep me interested -- at least, for now. That Anya girl is simply way too much of a tsundere. [Soul Eater Not is on FUNi]
Soul Eater NOT photo
Anime titles are rarely this accurate
When Soul Eater first rushed on to the screens and shelves of North America years ago, it brought along a fun story about Meisters with special powers who team up with Weapons who are also people with special powers. Its styl...

First Impressions: Captain Earth

Apr 07 // Elliot Gay
Daichi Mahatsu is a second-year high school student about to enter summer vacation. Friendly and pleasant to be around, he's not without friends or people that care about him. School isn't exactly his forte though; he just doesn't care about class and would rather read books, play games, or surf the net. Daichi's life changed dramatically when his father, an astronaut, died in space during an accident of some kind. One day while hanging with some friends, he sees a news report about a strange circular rainbow floating in the sky above Tanegashima, his old home. This phenomenon is more than just familiar: Daichi once saw something similar when he was but a child. Digging deep into his memories, he remembers the day he met a mysterious boy named Teppei, and the time they spent together at an old, sealed off facility on the island. Filled with a sense of foreboding, Daichi heads back to his hometown, breaking into the old building in the hopes of figuring out what exactly is going on. He meets a young girl, some crazy things happen, and eventually he finds himself piloting a giant robot called the Earth Engine. Hurled into space against an incoming enemy of unknown origin, it would appear as though fate has something great in store for Daichi. Well that was a packed first episode. The pacing of the first half wasn't so hot, but it nonetheless did the job of delivering important information to the viewer in a timely fashion. Much to my surprise, Captain Earth didn't hold back on dumping mysterious plot elements all over the place right off the bat. Weird circular rainbows, children who definitely aren't normal, a naked girl in an energy sphere; all this and more, and in flashbacks no less. Hell, even the antagonists (?) get some screen time, applying a face to the enemy super early in the series. Shout outs to their odd greeting which, while nowhere near as good as "kira boshi!', still managed to elicit a smile from me. Of course, like any giant robot series that takes itself too seriously, the dialogue is wrought with eye-rolling cliches. In some ways though, that's part of the charm. It feels like Bones is out to make a traditional mecha show, and whether or not that succeeds, I can at least respect that they seem to be diving in head first. I'm not really sure how I feel about Daichi as the protagonist as of yet; his aloofness bothered me in the first half, but his goofiness made up for a lot of that toward the end of the episode. I gotta love Bones rolling with the old school "boy pilots giant robot for the first time to defend Earth without any training" trope and not giving a damn. Plot zaniness aside, this was another lavish opening episode for studio Bones. Not unlike Star Driver, Captain Earth features a very lush art style that really does justice to the island setting. There's wasn't a whole lot of action to speak of this week, but the tantalizing bits and pieces of robot animation were great. In particular, the Earth Engine gattai sequence was great fun, combining the look of a super robot with a grounded, almost analog-esque formation sequence. I imagine we're probably going to see that scene a whole lot in the coming episodes. Musically, Star Driver alumni Satoru Kousaki heads up the score, and it's as big and booming as his previous work. I was amused to find that the first episode of Captain Earth already featured an insert song, and I'm hoping that the musical elements are as tied to the core narrative as they have been in this team's prior works. Captain Earth's first episode was an enjoyable robot romp, despite the sometimes cringe-inducing dialogue and weird pacing. I'm always down to watch a Bones mecha anime, and with so many strong veterans working on the project, I can only hope that things go up from here.  If nothing else, I'll settle for more pretty insert songs and long-as-hell gattai sequences. 
FI: Captain Earth photo
Longest gattai sequence ever
I secretly loved Star Driver. The ridiculously over-the-top posing, flashiness, strange imagery, and the beautiful animation; it all came together to make for an entertaining whirlwind of confusion and glee. That shouldn't co...

Streaming news photo
Streaming news

Crunchyroll to stream Captain Earth

Feels like dj vu
Apr 05
// Tim Sheehy
Crunchyroll will be adding Captain Earth to its growing list of anime set to stream this season. The series will premiere at 11:00 AM PDT on April 5th for premium members, with episodes available for free users a week after a...
Captain Earth photo
Captain Earth

New Captain Earth PV features opening theme

By your powers combined... oh, wait.
Mar 15
// Ben Huber
We've got a new season of anime coming up fast, and Captain Earth by BONES looks to be one of the bigger titles airing. The show comes from the same team behind Star Driver, which explains some of the similarities. I could d...
Captain Earth photo
Captain Earth

New Captain Earth PV shows up

It looks neat, I guess!
Feb 22
// Ben Huber
BONES is returning this spring with a new original series: Captain Earth. The name is a little silly, but it has some of BONES great staff behind it -- most of them folks from Star Driver. Now, I covered Star Driver way back...

Annotated Anime: Space Dandy ep. 02

Jan 14 // Ben Huber
This time around, Dandy, Meow, and QT are hunting down a new alien. They're doing it in the most roundabout way though: there's supposedly a mystical brand of ramen that is so special and so tasty that it surely could only be made by an unknown species. That's the logic going on here. It's a suitably silly premise and the crew decides the best way to find this ramen is just to... eat all the ramen. They visit the ramen headquarters of the world, where hundreds of restaurants all have set up shop, and dig in. Sadly, much of the humor in the first half falls flat. Twitter jokes, some pop-culture references, a boob joke or two, and some street view humor made up the majority of it, leaving me smirking at a few things but sighing at the rest. Once again though, the second half picks up a great deal. Not only do we get some physical comedy with Meow and Dandy jumping into a wormhole (Watanabe must really love those old-school Looney Tunes-esque sound effects, eh?), but we get the funniest bit so far in the story of the old ramen shop owner, when he accidentally burns his lady-friend to a crisp. This story was great! We get just the right amount of seriousness and sentimentality (which makes the fire joke so much funnier), and it shows that Dandy isn't in it all for the money. The ramen shop owner was a wonderful side character that was actually interesting despite being on screen for only a few minutes. I hope that the crew behind the show at BONES realizes that more of this will help the show in the long run. Granted, we're only on episode two, so there's still room to grow, but you lose people easily in the first couple episodes. As you might expect, the animation is again fantastic. We're (really) introduced to Scarlet with a flurry of punches and kicks that were a blast to watch. Actually, this makes me think of one funnier bit in the first half: Dandy immediately flailing about when the troopers yell "freeze" was pretty hilarious. It's not like Dandy would do much fighting anyway -- Scarlet dispatches the group easily on her own. I already want to see more of her, just because she's such a contrast to every other woman we've met in the show so far. However! I still think Honey is clearly hiding something, as she had heard of the phantom ramen and quickly pointed Dandy in the right direction. I'm definitely anticipating some interesting stuff from her. No real comments on the dub vs. sub differences this week, as they were both fine (although the dub made its pop-culture references a bit more obvious). I do prefer the delivery in the sub a bit more, but who's surprised about that at this point? While this was a definite improvement over episode one, I'm hoping Space Dandy can overcome this weird problem it has where the first half of each episode isn't super funny or just... as interesting. Take some of that magic you're holding in for the second half a spread it around a bit! Next week is being teased as a "fanservice" episode, so I do wonder how that'll go down. I'm still having some fun with Space Dandy -- I just want to have more fun.
Space Dandy photo
Who likes ramen? The whole galaxy, right?
Space Dandy episode two was definitely better than the first. Oh, did that catch your attention, maybe? There was a lot of disappointment over the first episode of Space Dandy. Whether that was due to raised expectations, the...

Space Dandy photo
Space Dandy

Toonami's trailer for Space Dandy episode 2

All aboard the hype train!
Jan 06
// Tim Sheehy
So the first episode of Space Dandy aired and reactions seem mixed. I'm sure Ben didn't expect the response to be so polarizing, but I admit I saw it coming a mile away. Any time a series receives this much hype, it's bound ...
Space Dandy photo
Space Dandy

Party in Vegas with Space Dandy and Otakon Vegas

Special premiere event with voice actor
Dec 13
// Jeff Chuang
Las Vegas seems like the right place to celebrate the first episode of Space Dandy, and so Otakon Vegas and FUNimation are having a sneak preview on the day it airs on Adult Swim, on Saturday, January 4th. Space Dandy's premi...
Space Dandy photo
Space Dandy

Watch all the new Space Dandy trailers right here

The one-stop-shop for Space Dandy trailers and videos!
Dec 02
// Ben Huber
You don't need me to sell you on Space Dandy anymore, do you? It should be patently obvious why this show is a big deal: not only is it Shinichiro Watanabe's return to space, but it's also the first anime to be dubbed and br...

Japanator Arena: Victor Von Gerdenheim VS Franken Stein

Oct 19 // Salvador GRodiles
In the Red Corner: Before realizing that his master was dead, Victor Von Gerdenheim set off on a mission to challenge the Darkstalkers in hopes of being accepted by his father. In his quest to become the greatest, he believes that taking down a fighter that’s obsessed with experimenting on others will please his creator. In the Black Corner: He has the ability to cripple people’s souls with his own hands, and the man is willing to experiment on almost anyone. Despite his insane appearance, Stein is actually a an amazing teacher at the Death Weapon Master Academy. Since Halloween is around the corner, we’re going to let this Soul Eater instructor let loose with his insanity. Tonight’s matchup is definitely an interesting one, since we have a man that can cripple souls go up against a manmade creature that uses sheer strength and electricity. In the end, it will be your votes and persuasions skills that will be the deciding factor in this showdown.  When you choose your side, make sure that you add a +1 to the fighter that you vote for. Otherwise, we will go insane from the madness that's spreading across the Japanator Arena. That being said, you have from today till Thursday to enter your vote, so do you best to not be late. After things begin to calm down, you are welcome to visit us next week to see who wins! While we don’t have to worry about the sun going down, I recommend that you head to your seat before you end up as a test subject. *ding, ding, ding* Let's Begin The Experiment! 
Japanator Arena photo
A different take on Mary Shelley's famous story
*ding, ding, ding* It's Over! Blade may be an amazing character in his own medium, but his swordsman skills could not match D's 1,000 years of experience. When the Daywalker realized that he couldn't stand up to Dracula's son...

Anime photo

First PV for Noragami arrives

Anime adaption of Toka Adachi's manga by Bones.
Oct 18
// Ben Huber
We're knee-deep in the new season but already PVs are starting to show up for later this winter! Next season Bones will be animating an adaption of Toka Adachi's manga, Noragami. The tale is about a bullied girl in school wh...
Space Dandy PV photo
Space Dandy PV

First official Space Dandy PV is live

Can't wait for this one
Aug 30
// Elliot Gay
[Update: For one reason or another, Bandai Visual has switched all of their PVs to private. This makes no sense whatsoever, but there's not a whole lot we can do about it. I'll update this space when a suitable replacement p...
Watanabe's new show photo
Watanabe's new show

Otakon '13: Shinichiro Watanabe unveils his new series

Winter 2014 is going to rock!
Aug 10
// Salvador GRodiles
[Update: Jeff's recording of the Space Dandy trailer has been added to the post.] I knew that it was a great sign when Shinichiro Watanabe decided to appear at Otakon, and what perfect way to do so by revealing his newest pr...

First Impressions: Blast of Tempest

Oct 16 // Pedro Cortes
The show opens with Yoshino leisurely walking to class down a hill in modern Japan. His friends Mahiro and Aika come down the hill riding a bike, warning him about another tardy. Aika seems to have a rather strong dislike for Yoshino. After quoting a line from Hamlet, we see a barrel on a far off island topple over and reveal an annoyed lady named Hakaze, who's been marooned by a guy named Samon. Hakaze, self-proclaimed as the most powerful mage in her family, mentions that she won't have access to her magic and is stranded on the invisible island, thought that won't stop her from trying to escape. Back in Japan, a melancholy Yoshino looks over a text message from his girlfriend about a future date while eating breakfast. It looks like some time has passed from his initial introduction, as a group of girls mention that Mahiro isn't around. This is confirmed when Yoshino's teacher asks where Mahiro has been in the past month. On the way out of school, Yoshino is jumped by a couple of punks, leading to the loss of his wallet and a flashback to better times.   Yoshino makes it out to a lonely grave looking out over a cliff. An attractive woman named Evangeline asks him about Mahiro. After he gives her a flip answer, she she pulls a pistol on him. Evangeline tells Yoshino that a certain boy had been spotted at two areas that are now under quarantine and that same boy saved a young girl. Yoshino tells Evangeline that he saved the young girl because she probably reminded Mahiro of his recently killed sister, leading to a flash back set ten months after Aika's burial. In the flashback, Mahiro is visibly frustrated with the lack of progress on Aika's investigation. When provoked by Yoshino, Mahiro says that he'll do whatever he has to do to make things right.   Jumping back to current times, Evangeline continues her interrogation right up until a massive group of butterflies flutter by. Yoshino uses the distraction to disarm Evangeline, but she quickly recovers and pulls another gun on him. When it looks like Yoshino's going to go down a rather rough road, a blue light shimmers in the air. Out of that shimmering light, Mahiro appears and delivers a foot to the side of Evangeline's head. In fact, Mahiro uses some rather interesting abilities, stopping a bullet from hitting him, teleporting himself around the area and knocking out Evangeline, who seems to be investigating something called black iron syndrome. Yoshino finds out what black iron syndrome is when he leaves with Mahiro and finds that an old man on the steps to the graves has metallicized into, you guessed it, black iron. It isn't just the old man, the entire city has been struck down. Mahiro says that the quarantined cities that Evangeline mentioned have also been affected. The cause of black iron syndrome is quickly revealed when a magical ritual uncovers a giant fruit covered in chains that raises into the sky. It's part of a larger plan that threatens the rest of the world.  Mahiro reveals that the source of his powers is none other than Hakaze, who sent out a wooden doll that binds her to whoever agrees to help her. How did she get the doll out to Mahiro? Why, it was the old message-in-a-bottle trick. The agreed upon price for Mahiro's assistance? The name of the person who killed Aika. Which, of course, leads Mahiro to state that he plans to kill whoever murdered his sister. Mahiro asks about Yoshino's parents, who are in another city. He also asks about Yoshino's girlfriend, which leads to the viewer finding out that the mysterious girlfriend that nobody knows about is, or was, Aika. The message on his phone that he kept checking was the last message that she sent out before they found her dead. Ouch.  Mahiro and Yoshino make their way into town. Mahiro gives his friend a quick rundown: a faction of Hakaze's family is attempting to summon all of the floating fruit and to combine them to bring back a giant tree. The two boys walk back to Mahiro's house and begin a ritual to find out who is Aika's killer. Hakaze explains that those that aren't mages, like Mahiro and Yoshino, can use talismans that have been imbued with magic. However, they break after a couple of uses, so they have to be careful. Mahiro activates the spell, though it's going to take a while. Mahiro gives Yoshino a couple of talisman before the two split up. After Yoshino steps out, the spell finishes and gives Mahiro the answer he's looking.   Yoshino heads back into town to grab some supplies and bumps into a rather grouchy Evangeline. She tries to interrogate Yoshino again, but he uses the talismans to get loose and run away. He makes his way back to his school, where Evangeline uses tear gas to force Yoshino out. He makes it out to the roof before Evangeline, giving him time to ambush her with a pistol he stole form her earlier. She disarms him, but he beats her again using the talismans. He offers a truce, mentioning that Mahiro needs help and can't be left alone. She tries to convince Yoshino to leave Mahiro alone, but he drops enough clues to let Evangeline know that Aika was his girlfriend and he has a stake in finding the murderer too. However, he doesn't want to kill the murderer, as it wouldn't bring Aika back.  When we cut back to Mahiro, we don't find out who the killer is, but it's suggested it's somebody that Hakaze knows. It looks like the two of them will be working together for mutual benefit. While walking around town, Mahiro is jumped by a guy in a coat who exhibits mage abilities. The guy's named Kusaribe, who Hakaze knows as a very tough mage. She tells Mahiro not to engage Kusaribe, but the hot-headed kid goes for it anyway. As he fights, he resolves himself to do whatever he has to do get revenge for his sister's death.  I had zero expectations going into Zetsuen no Tempest. I didn't know if it was going to be good or bad. All I knew was that there was a mysterious murder and magic was somehow involved. I'm glad to say that I enjoyed it quite a bit. There's some good pathos, some good action, the music is sufficient and the animation looks good. The set up where the world is at stake will probably feature heavily and drive the action along, but I'm going to guess that there's going to be a clash between Mahiro and Yoshino involving their preferred way of removing Aika's killer. Mahiro will probably go off the deep end at one point and it'll be up to Yoshino to keep him from becoming a monster.  Speaking of the boys, I find myself liking them. While I more or less guessed Yoshino's connection with Aika, I can believe that somebody like him would be so deeply affected by a death so close to him. He never seemed to be the vengeance type before Aika died, so he wouldn't be out for blood. Perhaps he'd look for justice, but he wouldn't want the killers throat between his teeth. Mahiro, on the other hand, you can really feel for and understand why he'd want to merc the guy that killed his younger sister. Hell, I'd probably feel the same way. You definitely get the feeling that he's going to have a dark journey.  I'm definitely going to stick with Zetsuen no Tempest. Unlike the other things I'm following, there's an established story with understandable goals for all the characters. When you have to hash through a fair amount of nonsense, it's refreshing when a show doesn't leave you out in the cold for the sake of mystery. I have no doubt that we don't know the whole story yet, but we have enough to know what's going and to keep watching. Aniplex has licensed it already and episodes will be popping up at Crunchyroll.
What would you do if somebody close to you was murdered and there isn't a single clue about who did it and why? Most people would languish in emotional pain and try to move on with their lives, filling the whole left behind w...


Eureka Seven: AO put on hold, new episodes in November

Sep 24
// OxKing
Did you enjoy the newest episode of Eureka Seven: AO? Yeah, I thought so. Look on the bright side, though: you don't have to see it again for a whole, entire month! This series has taken a few breaks before, but none nea...

Star Driver The Movie is shaping up to be super fabulous

Sep 05
// Elliot Gay
Star Driver was one of those shows that I was really enjoying, but for one reason or another got pulled away from. I've been meaning to go back to it ever since, the problem being that I'm easily distracted. I think I dropped...

BONES unsheathes two new Sword of the Stranger projects

Apr 16
// Salvador GRodiles
Way to go BONES, I see that you are coming up with some more projects behind our backs, that you are. Besides the currently airing Eureka Seven AO, there are also two Sword of the Stranger projects in the works to celebrate t...

Eureka Seven AO trailer takes you back to the skies

Feb 16
// Salvador GRodiles
Only two months until April, and we finally get an idea of what to expect out of Eureka Seven AO. Best of all, the sky surfing that all we know and love is making a triumphant return in the new series. Meaning,...

Final Impressions: No. 6

Sep 18 // OxKing
The most criminal thing about No. 6 is that it had once tried. It tried so hard, and it pain me that all of this effort didn't impress me in the end. Compared to other bombs in the recent year, Cardfight Vanguard!, Rio: Rainbow Gate and even Queens Blade, there was this mentality between these titles that they were trying to be all they could be, not everything at once. It's not that No. 6 is terrible because it began with a ridiculous premise that, from the beginning, no one was interested in (like those aforementioned shows before it). The reason I feel so disappointed in the show is because it failed to live to any expectations, as opposed to flops that are destined to never reach anything. It's a lot like that rich, spoiled kid you knew as a child, who could impress you with his collection of expensive toys, but is also someone you never really want to be hanging around with because he's a dick and is full of himself. Overviewing the entire plot of No. 6 just begs the question: "What went wrong?". Beautiful animation, great music, an OP I never wanted to miss... Little did I know that the real conclusion lingered in the back of my mind, and only revealed itself after finally reaching the end of the series: Nothing really happened in the first place. Granted, the series is only 11 episodes long, but compared to shows of similar length and themes like, say, Fractale, there was definitely a need for some more action. Here's the breakdown of No. 6 and its story in chronological order: These first three episodes were actually pretty good. If anything, the pacing was great, seamlessly moving the story along four years after our main characters encounter. Curve-balls like Safu offering sex to Shion and Nezumi grown up kept the somewhat monotonous plot rolling enough to warrant the benefit of the doubt. And then... ...the series jumped into "Repetitive Cycle Shit-Flinging Overtime" mode. Every chance, literally every chance, that Nezumi could discuss No. 6 with Shion, he would spiel about being the strongest, eliminating the weak, destroying No. 6 and not caring for anyone but yourself. What he would not do is explain why he thinks this way. It had to have been a case of trying to conceal Nezumi's past to keep the viewer guessing, but really all that I gathered from it is that he has a double standard and his feelings proving to be ironic... and no, I'm not talking about the literary kind of irony that's intentional, I mean the irony from terrible writing and poor planning. Holding back his motive and backstory from the audience in this situation isn't conveying the mystery that BONES had probably intented. Instead, it's considered withholding key information that we need to know if we ever want to like Nezumi or fully understand why he does what he does. That is, apart from liking him because he's the "tough, strong-headed-yet-emotional guy". Which brings me to another point: No. 6 doesn't want you to root for individual characters... they want you to root for the archetypes each character represents. Shion himself shouldn't be liked, because his reasoning and judgement is terrible, and he reaches illogical conclusions that happen to somehow work in his favor whenever the plot needs a kick-start again. But the character that Shion represents, the lead-character that never gives up and fights for what's right, is who we need to cheer on. Nezumi is an unstable bratty child, who happens to be the biggest drama queen, twisting around statements he doesn't like into a long monologue explaining why you must only fight for yourself to survive before going all "GRAHH" and punching something in an intimidating, but annoying, tone. But who he portrays, the tattered, reluctant rebel who slowly begins to value life more after meeting someone he slowly starts to fall in love with, is who the writers of the show wanted us to love. His intentions are good, but all he's known is to fight. This doesn't just apply to characters. No. 6 is the big, evil bad totalitarian city run by the evil people because everything is evil if you feel too safe due to evil things. Let's just put aside proof, reason and explaination on why it's evil, and simply base all we know about the city from whatever Nezumi says, the fighter of good and the ONLY ONE who knows the deep, true secrets of the city. In the end, the reason he hates No. 6 is about as predictable and unspectacular as his personality. Had No. 6 taken the "untrustworthy narrator" route and simply revealed that Nezumi was overreacting his conspiracy theory, then I would have fallen back in love with No. 6 again. The fact that all we know about the city is entrusted to a spoiled asshole who can't even covey his own emotions for the sake of expanding the plot out is enough reason to have doubts that the city of No. 6 is nearly as bad as he said it is. Had the series ended, simply stating that the situation with No. 6 was blown out of proportion by these two idiots, then that would have immediately been one of the greatest twists I've ever witnessed, bringing me to applaud the series once again.  Unfortunately... ...the ending is far beyond anything I would have considered successful. Huge mistakes in general storytelling were made, least of all due to the inclusion of Elyurias as... Safu, I suppose. There's nothing but confusion as Safu and Nezumi try to make sense of whether Safu was Elyurias all along, or the reasoning behind killing your own citizens with the dangerous parasites, or who Mother is, or why Mother specifically wants Nezumi, and why the creators just didn't give a shit anymore and suddenly use magical powers to resurrect Shion, who had thankfully been shot and killed. Why couldn't Shion just stay dead? That's how this series should have ended. I would have dealt so much better with an incomprehensible ending had Shion and Nezumi died in their stupid, glorified sacrifice. I could have lived with that kind of ending, because at least it keep in the context of a setting that is still deep and interest, and best of all... doesn't have magic. Instead, my limit was reached as soon as I saw Safu turn into a super bug, hovering over the corpse of Shion and the dying Nezumi before brushing off these fatal wounds that mere mortals would have died from long ago.  I'm completely resentful over the idea that this series-- which I praised to for its potentially great setting and presentation-- completely gave up logic and reasoning to all of its storylines, save Nezumi and Shion kissing. Everything else was either completely rushed, pulled out of an ass with no warning or explaination, or losing all of its steam after interesting initial thought before eventually being twisted and molded to fit an ever more convoluted and confusing plot. There is no sense of continuity. There seemed to be absolutely zero planning in connecting each episode outside of important things like the Shion/Nezumi relationship. So much so, in fact, that it interfered with important things... you know, really important things. Like details. And resolution. Not some deus ex machina that comes in and suddenly can bring the dead back to life. Because of this lack of explanation, I can probably safely say that No. 6 is a series about magic (This seems like the kind of series that would be so full of itself that would claim that the ending is up to the audiences interpretation). If that is true, then all along, Nezumi was secretly a wizard, and the reason he is so upset at No. 6 is because technology is like Kryptonite to magic. No bueno. Also, I can claim that Shion never really existed at all. His whole life and background was a subconscious illusion made up by Nezumi to help cope with his emotions and conflicting feelings about life. Cue hilarious scenes with Nezumi talking only to himself. I could go on, but I think my point is getting across about how incredibly incoherent and mind-boggling this series was structured. It's nothing but sloppy, the entirety of its writing has enough plot-holes and melodrama to barely pass as a poor fan-fiction spin-off of Eureka Seven, and to be frank there is barely enough meaningful content here to warrant half of the episodes in the series. The larger middle portion of the series focuses too much on unessisary stuff like Dogkeeper, Nezumi being an actor and Shion going back and forth with other, asking them why they hate No. 6. Everyone hates No. 6! Why does he keep asking? Why does he intentionally piss people off? And every time, Shion is always surprised when they either hit him, or threaten to hit him, or insult him... and then hit him. There is seemingly a lot of content that's going on in No. 6, but upon careful inspection and after finishing the series, it's all either excess crap that's mildly interesting or apart of yet another plotline that's tossed aside and never explained by the final episode. Watching No. 6 wasn't just terrible, it was disappointing... a sadness. Something that slowly crumpled from being worth interest into one of the worst productions put out by BONES. It's always hurtful to hear your parents say to you, after doing something wrong or disobeying their orders, that they're "not mad at you... just disappointed". It's a feeling that hurts deeper than a simple slap on the wrists, and my God, doesn't that perfectly sum up this series.

To be honest, my only viable option to watch the final episode of No. 6 was in 360p quality. Now, I'm a stickler for crisp quality, and others who are may know where I'm coming from after being spoiled by 720p or 1080p stream...

First Impressions: No. 6

Jul 14 // OxKing
Our story begins in the futuristic city-state "No. 6", the newest in a line of idealistic cities named No.'s 1 through 6 respectively. The history of the metropolis, overlooked by the vast City Hall (also known as the Moon Drop) tower found in the center, is discussed vaguely throughout the episode, with events like the Babylon Treaty, the "Special Track", a great war that banned military power, and the City Hall being discussed as something much more sinister than appears. Shion, a nice and very wealthy pre-teen boy, returns home after visiting his friend's, Safu, grandparents rural house, all before getting a lovey-dovey kiss from her and making it home in time to witness the fascinating typhoon outside of his bedroom window. There, he's surprised to see a another boy of the same age in tethered clothing and suffering from a gunshot wound he most likely attained from assailants chasing him earlier. The boy, who only goes by the name of Nezumi (translated to "Mouse"), shows that he's dangerous and reluctant of Shion's wealth and prestige in the home yet still agrees to have his wounds catered by the 12-year old prodigy. During the night, Shion tries to learn more about Nezumi, but only gets subtle hints to a larger picture and threats as answers. Despite his seemingly hateful attitude to higher class people, Nezumi slowly begins to enjoy Shion's company and even shares a few laughs with him. However as Shion wakes up (and as the episode ends), Nezumi is gone and the Ministry of Peace arrives at his doorstep. However, you shouldn't give one fuck about that, because the only thing that matters is that this anime is gorgeous. Everything about it seems fluid and full of life, and the sense of scale in some areas actually made me stop and admire the scene. Yeah, we hear it all the time: BONES is really good with animation and most art styles; there's almost a feeling of sophistication in the locations in the city of No. 6, and the tiniest details are the ones that got me mostly immersed. Subtlety in sci-fi is what I love, and in the world of No. 6, inventions like the bracelets on the wrists of elite civilians that bring up newsfeeds, serve as keys and what-have-you not only are cool toys that may play in later, but they're actually practical in the real world as opposed to being a "fancy, futuristic gadget". A tiny clip showcased the detail that BONES deals with where Shion held this bracelet up to a door, and calibration screen, similar to the Nintendo Wii or other gyroscopic remotes, appeared in the monitor, quickly filling up. Meaningless to the story, yes. But it really shows that No. 6 is looking to work towards a more believable setting rather than "people in the future use computers with convoluted menus that show a whole bunch of numbers and random letters". Initially, this series showed strong signs of falling into what I like to think of as the typical "BONES Plot". That is, where a young boy- whether he joins a rebellious organization or acts alone- is tasked to take on the evil totalitarian government before finding out dark secrets and being put through eighteen plot twists, a formula made pretty standard stuff thanks to Eureka Seven, Rahxephon, Star Driver and even the non-BONES series Fractale. Nezumi and Shion seem to be a perfect duo to either form or join a group of people wishing to help save mankind, or taking out the (naturally) bound-to-be-evil rulers of the city head-on themselves. I say initially, because given the history that sci-fi anime with this particular mood have, I naturally felt pretty skeptical. However, something occurred to me as I was watching the end credits: who the hell are they people? In the ED (as well as the OP), there are two characters seen interacting as if they are both friends of each other, yet the overlooming mood is that them being together just "isn't meant to be". Not meaning to be too presumptuous, but I feel it's safe to say that, based on the hair color and facial features, one of the characters is an adult Nezumi. However, to say that the other character is Shion is kind of tough, given the snow-white hair and bandage. Analyzing more of the OP and ED definitely foreshadow things to come involving winter, the sky, and an ominous hill that the older white-haired character is observing after his reminiscing. If I had to guess, I would expect a time jump, and possibly some crazy events to happen in the city of No. 6 in between. Perhaps what we see in the first episode only plants the seed of what's to come later on in the plot, such as a reunion between Nezumi and "Shion". But what of the childhood friend, Safu? Screw her, she'll probably come back and become jealous like they all do. Because the technology behind No. 6 is intriguing, and because I'm already speculating on possible things to happen in the series, I'm very much behind finding out what's on and sticking with this series. The bond between Nezumi and Shion, despite still needing some more time to develop, feels like it could possibly define the rest of the series (to be honest, the bond seems more brotherly and mutual as opposed to romantically... I don't know how some people can jump to such conclusions...). If the series hinges on the relationship between the two, then hopefully some juicy watercooler moments can come out of the changes seen in the adult "Shion" (assuming that the white-haired adult is Shion, and that there is a time skip in the series). My thoughts on this becoming the buddy-cop "take 'em all down"-meets-BONES affair are slowly being shot down with the new, speculative thoughts popping into my head. I definitely keep an eye out on this series each week, but unless there's a mention of Nick Nolte or Donald Glover consider me out after a few weeks.

I cannot even begin to describe my love for the film Point Break. The cheese and absolute "'90's attitude" this movie dishes out is embarrassingly hilarious in itself, but one of the main reasons behind why I can ne...


Licensing GET: Bandai grabs Star Driver

Apr 28
// Josh Tolentino
Are you hard for the works of studio BONES? How about for the licenses acquired by Bandai Entertainment? Or perhaps for Galactic Pretty Boys and KIRABOSHI! If you said "yes" to any of those questions, you can rejoice, because...

Final Impressions: Star Driver

Apr 07 // Ben Huber
When Star Driver opened with it's bright color palette and exuberant character designs, let's just say that I was pretty excited about it. I've had good fun with past BONES original shows, despite their flaws. So as the first episode finished, I wrote, "I'm sure it'll feel fresh throughout." Little did I know! The main problem with Star Driver was its lack of creativity in delivering the story. We had entertaining characters, great art, awesome music and more, but the script just decided to plop things on our laps at random intervals. Every week we were given mecha battles that quickly became tiresome affairs with reused animation and boring techniques that Takuto would pull out of his ass at the last second. Sure, we all knew he had to win in the end, but could you at least have it make a little more sense? Another problem was the lack of clarity in certain characters motivations. I would've cared more about Sugata's intent to forever lock away Samekh if we had at least gotten some hints as to his intentions to do so before the last episode. Instead, I was left wondering why Sugata joined Kiraboshi at the last minute and acted so aloof. We all theorized he was simply "following his familial duty" or some variant when he was actually working on his own plan. I'm not saying we needed every characters intentions spoken out loud, but better foreshadowing that is clearer to the audience is necessary here. Of course, we're all aware of BONES reputation for above-average animation, but while we did gets glimpses of awesome occasionally, much of the production felt very cheap, especially in comparison to previous BONES works. Perhaps this was just my fault for expecting the same level of work, or maybe BONES has been cutting costs (but what studio hasn't been, really?) so I guess all I can really say here is "it can't be helped." Although, I can't go without talking about the final episode. Which, while leaving perhaps 40% of my questions unanswered (30% of them being WHICH GUY WILL WAKO CHOOSE?!), still did an excellent job bringing the series to a close. Suddenly, animators appeared! Abruptly, many revelations about the story were exposed! This is a problem with every anime series, it seems, but at the very least: Star Driver episode 25 was pretty. Incredibly pretty, in fact, and it actually surprised me as well. The surprise being that Takuto would risk the whole world to save Sugata (and keep the love triangle going). Instead of letting Sugata seal Samekh and himself away, Takuto broke Wako's seal and unleashed the beast into the real world. He defeats him, and the cycle of life goes on. I really liked that little twist, especially considering I actually believed for a moment we would get a (sorta) sad ending with Sugata ending up sealed away. But what really sold this episode to me was the punch Takuto gave his father. It felt even more satisfying than the first punch! In the end, I'm not sure I can really recommend Star Driver. While it has some great bits (the beginning and the end with a few smaller moments in the middle) that large chunk of middling episodes located in the center of the series creates a tough barrier to leap. It quickly gets repetitive and borish, especially as I watched it on a week-to-week basis. Perhaps marathoning it would alleviate this problem, but I'm not ready to find out anytime soon. In the end, Star Driver was a thoroughly average show with glimpses of greatness and cleverness. At the very least, if you are willing to overlook the poor storytelling, you can still gather entertainment from the sheer fun and fabulous nature of the show. And well, when talking about this show, that's not something that should be downplayed at all. Kiraboshi!

Oh Star Driver, where did we go so wrong? I was so optimistic when you first started, I was sure you would be the standout series that season. And while, yes, you started out as optimistic and enthusiastic as Takuto himself, ...

First Impressions: GOSICK

Jan 09 // Mike LeChevallier
Not everything is in tip-top shape, though. The main, viewer tutorial-esque character, Kujo "Baby Squirrel" Kazuya, is hardly the star appeal of the show thus far, as nearly every other persona within scenery is much more interesting than he is. If his development isn't handled well within the next couple of episodes, GOSICK could end up with something I've dubbed (and it's appropriate, this being BONES and all) Joey Jones Syndrome. To clarify: Get this idiot off the screen. More Victorique please. Rolling around on the ground. All day long. To sum up GOSICK imperceptibly, I defer to 4chan:Now that I've thrown holy water across pews on either aisles of the otaku church, I can carry on without the screams of trolls weighing corpulent upon my conscience. In order to have this essentially recondite storyline be isolated from the rest of the faux-1920s academical landscape (near the base of the Alps, right-o), it's inevitable that Kazuya be a loner. Yet, he's not an outcast in the typical sense that we've come to see in many an anime; he's isolated because his peers take his black hair, strange approach to his studies and even darker-hued eyes as some kind of an omen. I mean, they even go so far as to call him The Reaper (I can relate, being a bony son-of-bitch, Death is not a humbling moniker to carry around atop your shoulders). Kazuya does have one friend, kind of, his energetic, rounded glasses-wearing professor Cecile Lafitte who sets the some would say fated meeting of our hero and heroine, Victorique de Blois, into full motion. Cecile's reasoning for sending Kazuya to the library to read up on ghost stories is something along the lines of "That's what this school is known for, so you should be knowledgeable in such a topic," and is trite to say the least, but it matters not, as the joining of The Black Reaper and The Golden Fairy delights in purity. As is customary for this breed of series, the male protagonist's initial judgment of his female counterpart causes him to, first and foremost, withdraw. In this case, upon seeing the doll-like Victorique and hearing her predict his future in an increasingly eerie manner, Kazuya cowardly flees the scene yelling and waving his arms frantically (I have a feeling this type of behavior won't soon change). Reporting back to Cecile that he witnessed a living doll (of the goth loli variety) in the library's (random) botanical garden, Kazuya is informed that Victorique is enrolled at the academy, and that she has tons of classroom handouts that she has not received due to constant absence (why has she not been expelled for poor attendance?) Of course, Kazuya gets duped by Cecile into going back up to the expanded terrarium to once again visit Victorique. Just from what GOSICK has illustrated to us up until this point regarding Kazuya's interactions with surrounding females, he strikes me as a sort of an asexual dude. Granted, the only women we've seen him genuinely correspond with are his teacher and a midget. I'll give it a few episodes to mature and branch out.The best section of this outing, and what makes it a winning example of how to introduce characters and the tone of the series without too much heavy handedness, occurs when Kazuya returns to Victorique's "lair" with a mindset that he's in charge of the situation set before him. That mentality is thrown out the window before words are even spoken, as Victorique owns the scene while spazzing it up on the floor like an idiot savant. Victorique soon reveals herself as a Sherlock Holmes-caliber genius (dat calabash), when her half-brother, Inspector Gervil de Blois (dat drill pompadour) arrives via Victorian elevator shaft to relate a crime that needs solving with the quickness. Gervil instantly draws comparison to Kogoro Mori (AKA Richard Moore) from Detective Conan/Case Closed--relying on a much younger, much more intelligent individual to find solutions to his problems and taking all the credit when the opportunity presents itself. What's also great about the entrance of the Gervil character is how fast his relationship with Kazuya is cemented: they will, no doubt, be at odds with each other every step of the way.The mystery in question involves the murder of a fortune teller (likely the same horrendous-looking witch hollering orders and incantations within the cold open), and the prime suspect is her Arabian (ha) maid. Victorique figures this thing out without even seeing a spec of the crime area, and Gervil runs off to tell the press and rake in the rewards. When spotting that oh-so-flashy hair that pierces the heavens in the paper a short while thereafter, Kazuya confronts Gervil and attempts to give him a piece of his mind, with little to no effect. It's clear that, at least for a while, Kazuya is going to be pushed around by everyone, never making clear cut decisions for himself and/or coming out the hero (it's also evident that Victorique could care less about a celebrity status, and that she relishes in making Kazuya dance a terrible Bon). Even when Kazuya and Victorique finally depart the botanical garden to find answers for themselves, The Black Reaper can hardly persuade The Golden Fairy to pack less unnecessary supplies. My verdict on the art style is a thumbs-up, and the OP (as previously mentioned) and ED are both commendable. To me, though, what's going to be this show's emotional anchor and (hopefully) keeping weekly mainstays harboring their dedication week after week is the blossoming bond between Kazuya and Victorique. There are some lovely moments between them in the tail-end of this episode on a train, as well when the pair arrives in the center of town to rendezvous with Gervil, that hint at what the heft of their evolving magnetism will be focusing upon. Here's my advanced speculation: Kazuya will be shown how to make difficult (and not-so-difficult) choices for himself, and maybe, just maybe, Victorique will be exposed to the depths of the real world, allowing her gifts to humanize her rather than keep her trapped in a prison-garden. Truly though, I don't mind her rolling around on the ground; she can partake in such ludicrous activity forever. That shit is hilarious. [GOSICK is simulcasting on Crunchyroll.]

Putting aside the eye candy, the music and the strong voice acting cast for but a moment, the very first aspect pertaining to GOSICK's presentation that jumps out at me is how briskly it is paced, and how successfully it pull...


Crunchyroll streams Gosick later this week

Jan 04
// Bob Muir
And the winter licensing announcements continue. Crunchyroll has been busy, and now they've got another show to announce: Gosick, by BONES, the studio famous for Darker than Black and Full Metal Alchemist. Gosick is the ...

FMA: Brotherhood movie teaser now streaming

Nov 14
// Mike LeChevallier
Not only has it been four months since the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood anime concluded, but the same amount of time has passed since the theatrical expansion was given the green light. So, here we are in November, and th...

BONES job application materials include silly pose

Oct 18
// Bob Muir
Are you watching Star Driver? I hear it's pretty cool. If you have seen it, you'll notice the villainous Kiraboshi Jujidan, or Order of the Glittering Star Cross, all greet each other with a special pose, seen in th...

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