What time is it, everybody? GOLDEN TIME!!!
Actually it isn't, it's time for the latest episode of Jtor AM, but Golden Time is involved, so it's kind of true. This week: the Toonami people try to get us hyped about a new anime... | subscribe
Can you believe it's been five years since the Toradora! anime first aired? Crazy! I remember watching it in my first year of university, stuck in a cramped dorm room and going nuts every time Ryuuji did something stupid. It ...
We may be at the beginning of a brand new season, but it seems a few older shows have come back from for a second quarter in the limelight. Little Busters! is one such show, returning from a three-month break with the conclusion of its crazy school-time story.
I quite enjoyed my time with the first season, but many of the folks that have played the Little Busters! visual novel weren't all that pleased with the anime. Will this installment win them over? Well, Komari still has an annoying voice and Kud is still the most adorable girl on the planet, so no big changes yet.
Indeed, this is more of the same, so you'll likely already know what your thoughts on this show are. However, I think Refrain seems extremely promising from the start; read on to see why.
A lot of people may have written off this anime because it's about four girls who are kind of cute doing rather cute things together. I can understand-- man, does that formula get tiresome. But what surprised me about Non Non Biyori, and makes it worth a watch, is that the girls aren't really the stars; the scenery is.
It's like the whole point of the show is to celebrate the sheer beauty of rural Japan, and the girls are just there for the sake of having something vaguely interesting in the foreground. It may sound boring (and you can make a pretty good argument that it is a boring show, just with added pretty) but the backgrounds are so spectacular that you don't even care.
It's a new season of Noitamina shows! I was particularly interested because this season features Takahiro Omori's return to the programming block (Princess Jellyfish was his first Noitamina show), and I wanted to see what he could do with a clean slate. Original shows almost always outrank something based off of a previous property in my mind, so when Samurai Flamenco was announced I kept a sharp eye on it. Would this tokusatsu-inspired show do something exciting?
Well, we've only got one episode so far, but as far as introductory episodes went, I really enjoyed it. Hang on though, let me back up and give you a little info first. Samurai Flamenco is about Masayoshi Hazama, a young model who dreams of being a superhero. Inspired very heavily by tokusatsu shows like Kamen Rider (which the show name-drops immediately), he attempts to fight crime and injustice in the world. Problem is, he's not very good at it.
My tastes are pretty polarizing. I get it. I loved Flowers of Evil, for instance, but a lot of you guys simply didn't like it. I'm a huge Tim and Eric fan too, and so many of my friends shake their heads in disgust when I des...
You have the right idea when you think Arpeggio of Blue Steel as "ships plus moe." That's what I thought going in, and I think that's generally correct. What that idea did not prepare me for was the whole "ships" part of the equation, or where most of the show spent its time.
Arpeggio of Blue Steel is a story about the future of mankind resting on the shoulders of a renegade, a privateer, or just your average anime protagonist with a chip on his shoulder. It's also a story about naval warfare-- about ships, submarines and sailors. Sure, it's got these girly avatars for weapon platforms of mass destruction, but click on and see why there's a lot more to it than that.
As I recently noted in my Free! Impressions, I had a mermaid obsession as a kid. To be fair, I still kind of do, but at least by this point, I've given up hope that going swimming in a magical lagoon somewhere will actually turn me into a mythical sea creature. Mostly.
So even though the characters in Nagi no Asukara aren't technically merpeople-- they can breathe underwater, but lack tails-- they're close enough that I was intrigued. Really, if a show features people who live under the sea, I'm hooked; it almost doesn't matter if it's any good or not, since we're invoking my treasured childhood fantasies here. My judgement is so compromised that it's pretty darn hard to make a show featuring sea-people that I don't engage with.
And yet, P.A. Works managed to achieve this nigh-impossible feat with Nagi no Asukara. I don't hate it, but that's because hating it would require entirely too much energy on my part. I just can't care about it.
Freezing was a show that had a lot of violence and a lot of exposed boobies and panties. Normally, this is a combination that holds my attention. However, an insipid story, boring characters and a pair of emotionally-stunted leads made it an utter chore to watch. I will say that it did look and sound pretty good, with solid animation and satisfyingly brutal fights, so while it didn't hit the sweet spot for me, I wouldn't say it was a complete waste of time for others.
With the second season coming in the form of Freezing Vibration, I figure it was worth giving it another chance. After all, I assume some amount of time has passed since the first season, so there's a possibility that some of these characters have grown up a little, right? Right? Guys?
Calling Log Horizon a blatant rip-off of Sword Art Online is probably unfair. I mean, there have been plenty of these "trapped in an MMO" shows, going way back to .hack//sign over a decade ago. Recently we've also had BTOOOM!!, Ixion Saga DT, and probably a few more I've already forgotten. It's a little subgenre unto itself, and as an entry in that genre, Log Horizon has its own idiosyncrasies.
That said, if your first episode features people realizing they're trapped in a fantasy MMO and banding together for survival, people pontificating pseudo-intellectually about the differences between game worlds and the real world, and--critically-- the main character touches the "log out" button on their UI panel and realizes "I can't log out," well...people are going to call you a ripoff of Sword Art Online. That's just how it is, okay? If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, you might just be in Aincrad. With a duck.
I made it two minutes into the first episode of studio TRIGGER's Kill la Kill before feeling a huge, stupid grin take over my face
The way I see it, that's got to be some kind of record.
The latest TV anime by Hiroyuki Imaishi (Gurren Lagann, Panty & Stocking), Kill la Kill's first episode is a whole lot of things; absurd, sexy, fast paced, and even goofy. There isn't a minute that goes by without something going crazy onscreen. As the credits began to roll on the debut of TRIGGER's first original series, I found myself with but one thing on the mind:
You are playing the live show of your short life. The girls you roped into doing the gig are surprisingly beautiful under the spotlight, at least to you. One of them is already one of the hottest in your graduating class and the other is just hiding in plain sight underneath her honor student reputation. What you will do once you graduate in 4 months? What you will eat for dinner tonight? White Album 2 tries its best to evoke the most youthful memory about high school it can.
This visual novel adaptation is a drastic departure from the original White Album, a relatively linear visual novel as opposed to an idol-producing sim. The original game was also 10 years ago, making White Album 2 a work for a subsequent generation, with a new set of characters and a very different style of story. Sure, it might not be as melodramatic, but it's got a similar smell of teen spirit.
It's easy to judge a book by its cover, and Walkure Romanze is no exception. The show features a cast of beautiful women, almost all of whom appear to be competing for the attention of a young boy, and if this sounds suspiciously like the plot of an eroge, that's because it is. The series is based on an adult visual novel of the same name, and by virtue of this fact, the series appears to have all the trappings of a harem, complete with a healthy dose of action and fan service. Fortunately for us, there's plenty more to be said.