Blood-C photo

Blood-C summed up in 60 seconds

Yep, that looks right
Mar 03
// Pedro Cortes
You may remember that I wasn't too hot on Blood-C or its sequel, The Last Dark. It really suffers from a listless plot that doesn't do much with its interesting lead character. However, it does have interesting moments, many...
Card Captor Sakura photo
Card Captor Sakura

Card Captor Sakura production material books on the way

I want all of them
Dec 11
// Elliot Gay
Card Captor Sakura is one of my top ten favorite anime series of all time. It's charming, heart warming, exciting, and unique in many ways. I personally think it's Clamp's best work. AnimeStyle will be publishing three separa...

Review: Blood C: The Last Dark

Nov 05 // Pedro Cortes
Blood C: The Last Dark [DVD/BD]Studio: Production I.G.Licensed by: FunimationRelease Date: Oct. 22, 2013MSRP: $34:98 [Amazon | RightStuf] Taking place a short time after the rather drastic conclusion of Blood C, The Last Dark begins with Saya’s arrival in Tokyo. All healed up after being shot in the face by Fumito, she’s ready to exact vengeance on the man who turned her life upside down. Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple, as Fumito has managed to escape behind a pair of powerful organizations called Seventh Heaven and Tower. One controls politics in the mortal realm, while the other manipulates things in the realm of demons. Thanks to an encounter with a demon on the subway, Saya hooks up with a different group called SIRRUT. These young hackers are trying to uncover why Seventh Heaven has convinced the Tokyo government to institute a curfew for those under 21, which happens to connect with Saya’s search for Fumito. Kuroto, the money man behind SIRRUT, has a pretty big grudge against Fumito, so he's willing to help Saya find the traitorous bastard. In the end, there’s death, betrayal, a whole lot of blood and Saya gets her revenge...sort of. See, there’s the thing. Saya does get her revenge in so far as justice is delivered to all appropriate parties. However, there’s little satisfaction for the viewer in any of it. For one, the main recipient of said revenge hasn't been around long enough to make any sort of impact, and the way he's dealt with is underwhelming. Then, there’s Fumito, who explains his actions by saying he fell in love with Saya. Now, there could be a place for a creepy, obsessive love that consumed both the villain, his family and the organizations that he manipulated. That would actually be pretty neat. The thing is, that’s not how it plays out. It comes off as a tragic passion that wasn’t meant to be, one that ends with a confession near death. It’s weak, played out and boring. Done correctly, it could've been a solid ending and Saya’s abrupt exit afterwards would made sense. Instead, it peters out, like a sparkler dipped in cup of water. Besides the problems with the story in general, The Last Dark isn’t a bad flick. It looks fantastic, with Production I.G. delivering on the animation and backgrounds. The acting is solid, with Nana Mizuki depicting a bitter, angry Saya on the war path. The members of SIRRUT are pretty forgettable, but at least they don’t wear at the nerves. Mana’s missing father provides a decent amount of pathos, though a lack of time with her (and the way it neatly wraps up) keeps it from having any lasting impact. I was also surprised to find that there are several CLAMP cameos sprinkled throughout the film. There are several Mokonas, as well as an important character from one of their older works that acts as a deus ex machina. I remember from the show that there were hints to his existence, but I was still surprised to see Saya and Mana visit him. Does this mean that Blood C is set in the Blood world or in the CLAMP world? You know what? Never mind. Thinking about it makes my head hurt. I was also a bit disappointed by the lack of action scenes. Based on the show, I was expecting there to be more demon slicing, but I didn’t get that. I got one lone blood-sucker getting shanked in the opening, one truly creepy…thing that Saya fights in the middle, a very quick dog-ish demon and a huge beast at the end of the flick. This is probably a bigger issue for me considering how abrupt and unsatisfying the conclusion was, so keep that in mind. I was also surprised at the lack of collateral damage. When you look back at the slaughter that was the final episode of the show, this movie is positively tame by comparison. If this is indeed the last note for Blood C, it's not a very good one on which to exit. While pretty and decently entertaining, it does little to make up for the deficiencies of the show the preceded it. There are no revelations about Saya’s past, and few hints to her future. Production I.G. had one last chance to redeem this series and they ultimately failed; it’s a disappointing end to something that had potential.   5.0 – Average. This one’s just “okay”. It has many flaws, and just couldn’t follow through on its intentions or had ones that were simply too narrow to warrant consideration. Some will still enjoy it, but should temper their expectations, or perhaps just opt to pass. Watch more trailers and read more reviews before you decide.
Review photo
Last chance for redemption
One of my largest criticisms in my review of Blood C was that it had no definitive ending. Yes, there was a resolution involving most of the characters in town, but it was clear that the show was a 12-episode precursor to the...

Blood C photo
Blood C

Blood C receives animation award

Well, the animation WAS pretty good
Oct 22
// Pedro Cortes
While it isn't a perfect show, Blood C is an alright horror show that looks and sounds solid. It seems that other publications agreed, as the 12 episode program was awarded the 2013 Reaper Award for Best Animation. Presented ...

Review: Blood-C

May 21 // Pedro Cortes
Blood C: Complete Series (Blu-ray/DVD Combo)Studio: Production IGLicensed by FunimationRelease Date: Jan 22, 2012MSRP: $65.98 For detailed descriptions , you can check out the Annotated Anime from the time, as well as my Final Impressions. In short, Blood C is about a high school girl named Saya, who hunts down and kills blood thirsty demons called Aged Ones in her small town. Besides the demon slaying, Saya has to maintain an otherwise normal life. However, things start to not add up, including some Aged Ones that seem to recognize her…and people in the town don't exactly act normal…and people that should be dead reappear. Hmm, conspiracy is a foot!  Rewatching Blood C did little to change my over all opinion of the show. There are still some serious pacing issues and the final surprise seems to come from nowhere. Yeah, it was a great punch in the gut, but it would've been better if the seeds for betrayal sprouted earlier. That said, when Blood C is at it's best, it's a bloody good time. Gory fights with an attractive girl slicing and dicing demons? That's all I really ask from in this world. Oh, and that last episode still makes as big as an impact as it did the first time I saw it. Due to the fact that this release is uncensored, it's worse than before. The squeamish might not enjoy certain parts of this show. While the violence of the last episode still makes an impact, the poor ending also still irritates. To find out what Saya does after she discovers what's going on, you're going to need to watch the Blood C movie.   While Blood C doesn't quite satisfy with its story, it does well enough in a few places. I found the show to look fantastic. The city looks beautiful as Saya walks between her home and school, with tons of bright colors and vibrant life. On top of that, I still feel that CLAMP's character design fits this world and, to a certain extent, adds a certain dissonance with the blood and gore. The music is also suitably gentle while Saya does her day job and tense while she fights the Aged Ones. Of the many problems that exist in Blood C, technical issues are not one of them.  In terms of acting, Blood C isn't a particularly great series for any actor. Nana Mizuki, Saya's seiyuu, has to do most of the heavy lifting and she does a serviceable job. However, the rest of the cast is pretty weak. The only exception is during the final two episodes, where some of the actors get a chance to switch things up. On the dub side of things, the acting is on par, if not better than the original. Fans of either format will be pleased. There are also two commentaries with members of the English cast and crew, one for episode six and the other for episode 12. It's fun to hear their banter during some rather serious moments, though I'd recommend waiting until you've finished the show before listening. Overall, I'd say that Blood C is a good show that gets shackled by pacing issues. While the particular things that get introduced during the slow bits of the show pay off in the end, it makes the whole show drag and feel way too long. However, those with patience will find some good in all of this. Not only that, but the music and animation are well done and make good use of high def set ups. Fans of CLAMP, horror and things of a general messed up nature would likely enjoy Blood C, though be aware that a movie is needed to finish the whole story. Score: 6.5 - Okay. (6’s are flawed, but still enjoyable. These titles may not have attempted to do anything special or interesting, but they are nonetheless enjoyable. These typically make great rental fodder or bargain grab.)
Blood-C Review photo
More claret than your local winery
When I watched Blood C in Summer of 2011, I thought it was a show that had a lot of promise. It started out with the distinct feeling that something wasn't right in an idyllic town that was being pressed upon by nightmarish b...


Full 5 minute preview of xxxHOLIC live action

J-drama adaptation
Feb 20
// Josh Totman
Thanks to WOWOW we are getting the first five minutes of the new live action adaptation of CLAMP's manga and anime xxxHOLIC. So far I am not really impressed with it. This is coming from someone that has not read the manga n...

Code Geass: Akito the Exiled episode 2 is looking good

Jan 31
// Elliot Gay
I'm the last person you'd call a fan of either Code Geass TV series. I will however say that I think they're beautifully animated pieces of television that I don't regret watching, even if the actual story and cast did nothi...

A Daily Dose of Battles: Hikaru vs Athena

Like mother like daughter
Jan 29
// Hiroko Yamamura
Let's literally kick things off with our first themed Daily Dose of 2013! The week, your favorite Japanator editors let you know which famous anime battles get their adrenaline going, fists clenched, and showcase what we all...
Reach out for the real truth!
*ding, ding, ding* It's over! Zangief may have fought the best of the best, along with wrestling bears as part of his training. But in the end, it all amounts to one thing: Zangief has never punched Izaya. Simon on the other ...


Rejoice? Live action xxxHOLiC drama incoming

Sep 06
// Elliot Gay
I'm not on very good terms with Clamp these days. I absolutely adore their early work (Card Captor Sakura, Magical Knight Rayearth), but their recent stuff hasn't done much for me whatsoever. I've heard good things about xxxH...

First chunk of Code Geass: Akito the Exiled streaming

Aug 09
// Elliot Gay
I'll be honest with you guys and gals. Code Geass has never really appealed to me for one reason or another. The first season didn't do much for me and while I enjoyed the pure eye candy on display, I greatly disliked the cor...

SAYA! Blood-C: The Last Dark trailer has shouting

Apr 02
// Bob Muir
There's more Blood coming up, with Blood-C: The Last Dark, a movie follow-up to last year's Blood-C anime series. Production I.G. is teaming up with CLAMP again to continue the story, since it ended rather poorly for the char...

Code Geass hitting the stage in 2012

Dec 05
// Bob Muir
Ignoring the fact that the original story featured tons of fancy, smoothly-animated mech battles, Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion is getting adapted into a theatrical play that you can see as soon as April 2012. Butaiban...

Blood-C: The Last Dark promises more killin'

Dec 04
// Josh Tolentino
If you'll remember, CLAMP and Production I.G.'s schoolgirl slasher series Blood-C didn't exactly end well for pretty much anyone in its cast. While I won't spoil things here (you can check out Pedro's Final Impressions of the...

Final Impressions: Blood C

Oct 09
// Pedro Cortes
To say that Blood C has taken an interesting turn would be a bit of an understatement. Nothing really new or surprising, what with high school girl Saya using her mysterious powers to defend her town from encroaching demons. ...

Code Geass Gaiden: Bokoku no Akito goes direct-to-video

Aug 29
// Bob Muir
The first animated sequel to Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion has a release date! Sometime in November 2011, we'll be able to see a Lelouch-less story set after the events of the original anime, in which Elevens (a.k.a. J...

New Code Geass definitely doesn't have clone Lelouches

Jan 06
// Brad Rice
Last year Sunrise decided to milk the Code Geass goat a little bit more by announcing a project set within the Code Geass world, Code Geass Gaiden:Boukoku no Akito. The series, a side-story to the larger Code Geass franchise,...

Japanator Recommends: X

Jul 13
// Pedro Cortes
If most anime fans were asked what the typical CLAMP work would contain, noodley pretty boys swinging swords in fantasy settings would probably top the list followed by adorable little girls whirling magical wands accompanied...

Congrats to our winner of the X giveaway!

Jun 15 // Brad Rice
Congratulations to our winner, Das Inchworm! It was a close call between all of them, but your entry really captured the hearts of the staff:The World Is Ending Brad and Jake dressed as Butlers? Boy Love Imminent And, for the other finalists, we wanted to at least highlight your entries since we didn't have a bunch of copies of the show to give out. Sorry to say, but at least you were close.Baka TensaiGitah is broken Yotsuba obeys Yanda Darkness has spoken.BorrieTokyo is destroyed everyone but Kamui dies worst. ending. ever. HammersharkYotsuba scribbles She rewrites Revelations And that's just DAY ONE

There was a lot of debating amongst the staff over who would win our X giveaway. Some of you guys had really good haiku written up, but we finally settled after a lengthy battle. It involved Crystal stabbing a bear in the eye...

Japanator (Doesn't) Recommend: Clamp Double Feature

May 12 // Pedro Cortes
The two features on the disk are the Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle and xxxHolic movies. These movies aren't part of the overarching plots of either show, so they can be seen even if you are unfamiliar with either series. For those that do stumble into this movie with no knowledge of either source material, there are brief summaries at the start of each movie, though I don't see many people picking this up if they aren't at least passingly familiar with either show. Either way, I recommend starting with the Tsubasa movie, The Princess in the Birdcage. The Tsubasa movie has our intrepid heroes arriving on yet another world looking for the feathers that contain the memories of Sakura, the princess that Syaoran is attempting to save. The group lands in a forest and is immediately swept up in a struggle between the princess of the Birdcage Kingdom and her uncle, who has usurped the throne. He's get evil plans, Syaoran and company sense a feather, several fights ensue, a giant toucan is summoned, a pokémon is called to fight it, everybody is happy, the end. It plays out like an extended episode of the show, which is not high praise. It's formulaic, repetitive and predictable. If you've seen a couple of episodes of the show you will be able to tell exactly what's going to happen very early on and be bored to tears the whole way through. The fights aren't impressive until the before mentioned toucan/pokémon battle and even that fizzles out. It's a damn shame too, because I very much like all the characters involved. Just not when they are doing uninteresting things.On the complete opposite end of the spectrum is the xxxHolic movie, A Midsummer Night's Dream. The film has Watanuki, Yuko and Domeki investigating a mansion on the behest of a client, as well as an invitation sent by an unknown party.The trio arrive to find a room full of collectors, each there on the suggestion that the host has an item that will complete their collection. What follows is an hour of trippy visuals, haunting music and some very tall noodly characters. A Midsummer Night's Dream is an overall enjoyable experience that's easy on story and complex with visuals. The vistas created within the mansion are beautifully rendered and play with the imagination. Visuals are the strong suit here, which is amusing considering how polarizing xxxHolic's character design is. While it doesn't bother me, I can understand why people would not like the look of the people inhabiting this world. However, if you dislike the deliciously sexy Yuko, we'll have to exchange some stern words.These are upscales of the original DVD release of these movies, so don't expect bright, crisp visuals. In fact, you should expect the opposite. The Princess in the Birdcage looks substantially dated even for the year it came out, while A Midsummer Night's Dream still manages to look pretty good, if not too impressive. You aren't getting a significant improvement in visuals if you buy this instead of the DVD and the audio quality, while pretty good, isn't anything that you couldn't find on a standard DVD release. Like their respective manga, A Midsummer Night's Dream and The Princess in the Birdcage share some common scenes and characters. Several people appear in both films and there are items found in one movie that are the maguffin in the other. The connections end their, much to my chagrin. I really dug the universe hopping nature of xxxHolic and Tsubasa and to see it pointlessly used in these films disappoints me. Considering that the anime adaptations drop these connections very early on, I shouldn't have had my hopes up but hell, a fan can still wish. Much to my surprise there were a multitude of bonus features for both movies. There are staff and cast commentaries, video of the Japanese movie premieres, recording session outtakes and production stills. It's pretty beefy considering how paltry most anime features are on disk. If you dig the movies then you'll definitely like the extras here.In summary, I wouldn't recommend picking up this Blu-ray solely because the content provided doesn't warrant the extra money it costs over the DVD. The Princess in the Birdcage is resoundingly bland and run of the mill while A Midsummer Nights Dream is a nice little romp with trippy set pieces and nice animation. The bonus content is nice and helps fill out what could have been a paltry release. Right now the DVD and Blu-ray are both $22 at Right Stuff. If you have a Blu-ray player, I'd suggest getting the Blu-ray if only to support the medium, but if the price gets any higher than the DVD then I say go for the cheaper option.

I love how Funimation is supporting Blu-ray by releasing nearly all of their current shows on the shiny, hi-def format. I wish more companies were as ambitious in pursuing Blu-ray, considering a lot of shows that I currently ...


New Code Geass anime coming, doesn't star clone Lelouches

Apr 23
// Josh Tolentino
Not as far as I'm aware, that's for sure. According to 2ch, it's going to be called Code Geass Gaiden: Boukoku no Akito (Akito of the Ruined Nation), and is set several years after the end of the TV series. The whole "wo...

A Few Thoughts On...Cardcaptor Sakura

Mar 28
// Dragonzigg
[This is a promoted Community Blog, written by one of our readers. If you would like to see your own Cblog on the front page, warm up your keyboard and write something awesome! ~Jon Snyder]  Cardcaptor Saku...

$19.99? Angelic Layer is too awesome to cost only $19.99!

Mar 19
// Dale North
One anime that will always stand in my top ten will be Angelic Layer. I can't even really explain why, but I love this anime. Bones adapted it from the Clamp manga, but the details don't matter. Something about it is just mag...

Can't wait: Kobato TV anime preview

Sep 18
// Dale North
It's coming. Clamp's manga is going TV anime this October, courtesy of Madhouse, and Kadokawa has a new promotional video to show off the upcoming show. I'm excited! How about you? Have you checked out the manga?Speaking of ...

Japanator Recommends: xxxHolic

Aug 03 // Colette Bennett
xxxHolic (Season one box set)Based on: CLAMP's original manga of the same nameOpening theme: "19sai" by Shikao SugaRelease date: July 28th, 2009MSRP: $69.97I was originally drawn to xxxHolic because I thought the story sounded intriguing right off the bat. It centers around Kimihiro Watanuki, a high school student with the slightly annoying problem that he is able to see spirits (and the majority of them seem to want to wrap around him and hover in a rather uncomfortable way). In the first episode, he finds himself compelled to enter a shop and meets a beautiful and mysterious woman named Yuuko, who says she is in the business of granting wishes. Naturally, there's a price to pay for such a service, and Watanuki is bound to pay it if he wants to be rid of his ghosts.Yuuko is a powerful witch (and better known as the Dimensional Witch if you've seen Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicles), and it isn't long before she's coerced Watanuki into working for her part time in exchange for freeing him from the evil spirits he sees. Of course, by doing so, he also meets her other "customers", and soon he finds himself seeing a world of  complexity he suspected but never fully grasped before.xxxHolic does an elegant job of only introducing you to a few major characters and focusing on their development throughout the anime, rather than going with a huge cast. You'll meet Maru and Moro, Yuuko's assistants, and Mokona, who you may also remember from Tsubasa. In addition, you'll meet Watanauki's love interest, Himawari Kinogi, and his rival/friend Shizuka Domeki, who will occasionally assist him with his work at Yuuko's shop. xxxHolic also knows how to juggle tones, mixing the world of the supernatural with enough well-placed humor  to make the show a good choice when you're in the mood for something between light and deadly serious. Each episode presents a standalone story and that format continues for the entirety of the first season. While the show does attempt to follow the manga and succeeds for the most part, it is worth mentioning that there are some differences.The dubs are not bad here, with Colleen Clinkerbeard voicing Yuuko (and capturing that same smoky  feel as  Sayaka Ohara's Yuuko) and Todd Haberkorn doing Watanuki. I personally prefer the show in Japanese with subtitles, but it's a least good to know that if you choose dubs they are perfectly passable. Also of note is the opening theme, 19sai by Shikao Suga (see video below), which I never got tired of listening to.Whether you've been a fan of CLAMP for a long time or xxxHolic is your first experience with their work,  you'll no doubt notice right off the bat that this show sports a distinctive style. The art is very expressive and reminds me a bit of the long-limbed characters of Erte paintings. While some might not care for it, it was the first thing that captured my attention about the show, and I feel it perfectly suits the darker themes of the story. Japanator certainly recommends this show, especially if you are a fan of supernatural storylines -- but don't blame us if you find yourself desperately craving a copy of the Official xxxHolic Guide afterwards!

I've been a fan of CLAMP since way back in the Chobits days, and my love for that series has fueled me to keep an eye on their work. Of course, I'm a sucker for supernatural themes as well, so it's no surprise I found myself ...


CLAMP creates art and makes a PV for a Hatsune Miku song

Jun 18
// Eva Duenas
Being a big fan of both CLAMP and Vocaloid, to find out that the amazing CLAMP ladies drew Hatsune Miku art for a song that they happened to fall in love with. Chibiyuuto posted about their letter and the things they wrote th...

CLAMP to design special costume for Tekken 6

Jun 17
// Josh Tolentino
According to Tekken fansite SD Tekken, all-girl mangaka circle CLAMP will be designing special costumes for characters in the upcoming console versions of Tekken 6, due out Q4 2009. The costume will be for the always-conflict...

CLAMP's Mangettes: Gate 7 cover revealed

Mar 26
// Eva Duenas
I am a big fan of CLAMP but I'll be honest, I had no idea that they were working on another manga. Why do they keep doing this? Please finish up your other work, like X, ladies. It's great that you keep giving us new things b...

Comparison pictures for upcoming Card Captor Sakura Blu-Ray release

Feb 11
// Eva Duenas
Card Captora Sakura is my favorite anime of all time. The fact that they're releasing a Blu-Ray version seriously just made me jizz my pants. You might recall the announcement back in December and many people questioned how t...

Cardcaptor Sakura flys your way on Blu-Ray in 2009

Dec 11
// Rio McCarthy
Cardcaptor Sakura is a series that has been near and dear to my heart for some time now. I always get a kick out of looking at her different costumes, as well as watching the story develop over the course of the show. No matt...

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