It's the last episode of Jtor AM -- at least in this incarnation -- so we spend half of it arguing about astronomy...as you do. Somewhere in between telling each other to Check our Planetude, we still find the time to discuss...
This week, Tim continues his strange vendetta against Canadians, while the rest of the cast tries to make sense of the increasingly incomprehensible The Irregular At Magic High School. In other news, Hase from One Week Friends is missing an important fact, Haru from Riddle Story of Devil needs to get her act together, Nike from Still the World is Beautiful probably isn't dying anytime soon, and LB and I are so happy that anything happened in Kawai Complex that we don't even care that there's no plot.
In other words, a great and fun-loving podcast...unless you're Canadian, possibly.
This week, Tim and L.B. reveal the dark, seedy underbelly of Sakura Con -- or they would have, if they were invited to any of the cool parties, but they were too busy waiting on lines for that. Meanwhile, Ben and I share our growing love for the directorial stylings of one Maasaki Yuasa while L.B. and Tim stubbornly resist the allure of The Cult of Ping Pong....while they can.
In perhaps the most important development since the beginning of the podcast, we also reveal everyone's superpowers: I have the ability to turn even the smallest amount of alcohol into demon death juice, Ben can get involved in Free-to-Play stuff without being suckered into buying virtual game crap, L.B. is a psychic doppelganger who can read minds, and Tim can spot a Canadian in disguise at 40 paces. Tim also has the power to watch any anime his wife tells him to watch (even if that anime is Nisekoi), but maybe that should count as his wife's superpower instead? I'm rusty at my superhero canon; it's a good thing I'm not a comics blogger.
This week, some staff members who shall remain nameless would rather have a Game of Thrones podcast then talk about silly Japanese cartoons all day. But alas, we are Japanator, not DaenerysTargaryenator, so we must persevere through a season of less-than-inspiring shows. We do however manage to discern a few bright lights of hope in the form of One Week Friends and Ping Pong, and Ben would be totally up for discussing Mushishi S2 if anyone else would ever watch it.
Notable questions of the week: Will the Gurren Lagann stage play feature giant paper mache robot heads? Is the school in Kamigami no Asobi filled with ghosts, and if so, shouldn't Yui be a little concerned about that? Has L.B. discovered the ultimate secret behind Nisekoi? And finally, what does BONES have against hiring actual writers who know how to write more than one story? All this, and more, on an exciting, conflict-filled Jtor AM 27!
...Oh and Tim of all people watched Marvel Disc Wars, seriously I don't even know where to start with that.
This week's show is longer than usual because we discuss pretty much every show that exists. Join Tim "I think this show is stupid and you're stupid for liking it," Sheehy, Ben "I'm too nice to say you're stupid but I'll just judge you silently," Huber, L. "I think I maybe liked it? Kind of? A little?" B., and your host, Karen "So maybe I am stupid, DEAL WITH IT!" Mead as they navigate the best and worst of the spring 2014 anime season. We're also joined by Jeff "Who even cares about anime, I just got back from Japan BITCHES!" Chuang.
Still, despite all the anime on our plates, we still make time to ask the insightful questions that we know the anime community depends on, like: Would Nisekoi be improved if there was an actual dead girl buried in the cellar? Was Captain Earth written with a Magnetic Poetry Set, Mecha Edition? Does Irregular at Magic High School get any points for being interesting if all the cool stuff was stuffed in the first 30 seconds, never to be seen again? Does one teenaged assassin throwing three sticks of Pocky at another teenaged assassin count as an "action scene"? And does Ben only enjoy Soul Eater NOT! due to an unusual and mysterious absence of groping? All this, and more, in a jam-packed episode 26!
This week, I learned that Love Live, Data A Live, and Love Lab are actually three completely different shows, making this quite possibly the most educational episode of the podcast that we've ever recorded. However, this episode isn't mere edutainment; we also bid (mostly) fond, emotional farewells to Kill La Kill, Samurai Flamenco, Golden Time and Sakura Trick. We may or may not have bid farewell to Nisekoi; it's kind of up in the air and may depend on how charitable L.B. is feeling once his "OMG I never have to watch Pupa again!" euphoria fades. I mean, he's feeling generous now, but wait until he's a couple of episodes into blogging The Irregular at Magic High School....
More importantly, we all agree that Short-haired Satsuki is Best Satsuki, making her Double Best Girl; the whole magic bridge thing in Golden Time probably didn't work out quite as planned; and Space Dandy is way better when Dandy himself can't be bothered to show up.
To add some spice to this episode, I try to stir up drama by plotting a seed of disagreement about Space Dandy between Ben and Tim; however, instead of having a big fight, they both cordially agree that their levels of admiration and respect for the show are different, and move on to discussing bigger and better things. A mature difference of opinion? What podcast do these guys think they're on, anyway? I'm sure I can find something to get the two of them at each others' throats....
Still, even without one of our regular fights, this episode is still full of fascinating anime intrigue like "Is Goto alive?", "What was the point of destroying the Original Life Fiber if Ragyo still has clothes?", and "Can we really take even one more episode of Nisekoi, let alone 13?" In other news, Ben is psyched for the next cour of Space Dandy, L.B. and I bid a tearful goodbye to the pleasant surprise that was Super Sonico: The Animation, and Tim introduces a new character to the popular Fate/stay Night mythos. I hope Type Moon and those ufotable people appreciate everything our editor-in-chief does for them.
This week the crew -- with the help of special guest, site founder Brad Rice -- tackles dubbed preview clips of debatable quality, the art style for the new Sailor Moon anime, quasi-erotic manga billboard controversies, and why NISA can dub ToraDora any time they damn well feel like it. Brad also wants you to know he reads waaaaay more artistic manga than you, and while that doesn't necessarily mean he's smarter than everyone else, it may be best to proceed on that assumption. I mean, he reads Vertical titles and everything.
There's also our token Golden Time argument, this week centered on the deceptively complex question, "Just when that morning did Koko turn her bitch on?"; we mourn the vast potential that Wizard Barristers once had; Pupa comes dangerously close to making sense (but not really); and Tim gives us his opinion of Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes. Frankly, if you can't hide from your enemies in a cardboard box anymore, I don't see what the hell the point is, but apparently some people still like this series.
Friends, otaku, countrymen: we stand on the precipice of a new age in Japanese animated entertainment. Now that Super Sonico The Animation has produced the world's first objectively perfect anime episode, where do we go from here? Will production companies balk at the pressure of constantly being measured against "The Sonico Standard?" Or will they continue to cling to pedestrian fare like Nisekoi and Magical Warfare like frightened babes clinging to their mother's breast? Furthermore, in a post-Soni-Ani 10 world, is there even a place for non-kitten anime like Kill La Kill anymore?
In other exciting news, Tim wants to know what Space Brothers is and why LB watches it, Brittany drops by to discuss the many enigmas presented by Mitsuki's chastity belt(s), and everyone debates just how tired Koko is of Tada Banri's particular brand of bullshit. Oh, and we discuss the Imocho live action trailer, not because we're anticipating it or like it in any way, but because we said on a previous podcast that we'd continue following the story. That shows integrity...probably not journalistic integrity, no. But I think we should get credit for having some kind of integrity here.
Question: Am I bad luck? Because as Tim and I realized this week, whenever I ask for something to happen in an anime, it never ever happens, even if it would be self-evidently awesome and the writers are nuts for not going with it. Why can't I have nice things?
Listeners: do me a favor and do something to help me test this theory. Listen to this episode of the podcast while eating an ice cream cone. If any of the ice cream ends up in your lap when my voice comes on, then we'll have some objective proof that I am jinxed for life and should never talk about Japanese cartoons and...what? You want me to specify what flavor ice cream you should be eating? For gosh sakes kids, have some agency! Or pick Cookies and Cream, whatever!
Thanks to this week's Wizard Barristers, Tim and I have learned that Boston is actually in California; I bet all those people who signed up for PAX East are in for a rude awakening in the spring. However, due to the show's blatant disregard for geography, Tim is now done defending it and we get to bond over our mutual outrage over the writers' lack of effort and research. That said, I'm still kinda mad at Tim for saying mean things about Super Sonico and Kill La Kill's Senketsu, so we still have stupid fights that go nowhere-- just in case you're a fan of that sort of thing.
Other pressing questions of the week: Is Square Enix giving up on video games and becoming the new Exxon-Mobile? Should Mrs. Mankanshoku be ashamed of herself for oogling Aikuro's impressive lower regions for an entire episode? If it looks like Naoto Shirogane, sounds like Naoto Shirogane, and has a gun like Naoto Shirogane, is Nisekoi less annoying? And why, for the love of God, can no one in anime swim? They all have those official schools swimsuits and everything, don't try to tell me they've never had swimming lessons. It's downright scandalous.
Are you tired of short, wimpy podcasts that run out of juice before you're even halfway done with your morning commute? Well then, you should love this economy-sized episode of Jtor AM, filled to the brim with spirited discussion of all the hot anime and gaming topics of the week, plus whatever the hell Pupa is.
Of course, this week also features plenty of the fascinating, thought-provoking questions that you've come to expect from this fine podcast, like: Is giving your dog a role in a video game an act of guileless charm or shameful hubris? Should professional voice actors be allowed to use Twitter ever again? Does Sakura Trick's Haruka know where babies come from? Does Sarah Palin Bayonetta lose her power when she cuts her hair? And if Tim used the words "Great" and "Kill La Kill" in the same sentence, does that mean we have officially entered an alternate universe? And, if so, is it a universe that contains unicorns? And, if so, can I please have a baby unicorn? I promise I will feed it candy and everything.