Tag Archives: Anime

I’ve Always Liked You (2016)

When I think back about my romance experiences in high school I immediately laugh, and stop thinking about it just as quickly. I find it hard to believe I blew certain things out of proportions that today I don’t bat an eye at. One of them is confessing my feelings for a girl with the outcome being devastating to my very existence, or the greatest thing on Earth. One thing I certainly wasn’t when it came to young love was having it on my mind all day everyday. Imagine having an entire cast of characters just think, and talk about lovey dovey stuff to each other all the time, and you’ll have this movie in a nutshell.

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So many red faces.

In short, I’ve Always Liked You follows seven friends each in love with another person in their circle of friends. One bright spot are the characters facing the same conflict are decently fleshed out. Each character is given some time to explore their predicament, and how they’re uncertain to approach their situations. However, in a movie that barely crosses the one hour mark most of them will come out more shallow than others. Only Natsuki, and Yuu barely scraped out of this issue since the film dedicates more time to them than any of the other characters. While failing in being engaging there’s more to latch onto with Natsuki, and Yuu than with the other will they, won’t they couples.

When all the characters face the same issue of being unable confess their feelings to the one they love their personalities just mesh into one. Everyone is nice, shy, and contemplative about taking the next step from being just friends into a couple. This makes for one boring cast of characters when everyone is written to act similar to each other. Becoming easy to forget about them as you’re watching. Souta for example has the “love of first sight” symptom with further reasoning for his conquest of love coming off delusional. Souta, and his love interest don’t learn much about each other, or spent much to together making the outcome of their story hard to accept.

What passes for conflict in this movie feels underwritten. There’s a scene involving Natsuki being walked home by Koyuki (who likes Natsuki), and hugs her being unable to control himself. Nothing inappropriate is done in this scene, but the characters overreact artificially making something bad out of something innocent. This goes nowhere as the characters quickly move past it. There’s also the characters of Miou, and Haruki getting the short end of the stick in their plot line. Nothing ends up getting resolved between these secretive love birds. Worse of all, there’s not even an attempt to make this lingering plot point have meaning. Not even the faint idea of unrequited love stemming from this fear to express yourself is even touched on.

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Love calculus dictates U + Me = Us

There’s another plot point in the movie that is left lingering. The folks over at Qualia Animation decided to dedicate an entire movie, The Moment You Fall In Love (2016), to resolving that. Something tells me someone over at Qualia Animation knew they might be testing viewers patience going around in circles with the repetitive conversations centered around love. Wouldn’t be an issue if they either had a smaller cast with a better focus, or a longer run time to flesh out the large cast more than they did.

The animation ranges from subpar to fine whenever it doesn’t have a flashback. Movement when at a distant, or simply talking is choppy in places. When in flashbacks it does that classic cheap animation thing of having a single frame stay on screen for a long time. This isn’t an issue until the end where they become more in used. Generally the movie is bright, and colorful, though there’s lack of shading in the hair. Qualia Animation does the trick for the movie, even if improvement in certain area is noteworthy. Character designs could be better. They just come off as bland.

When it comes to the music from Honeyworks I have no issue. They’re good songs that is able to fill a scene with more emotion than the film’s story. The usage of them is poor at times with director Tetsuya Yanagisawa placement of them being jarring at time. Within 30 seconds you have insert track play which is jarring for making a first impression. Once the movie is halfway through Yanagisawa uses Honeyworks song more often to substitute his poor storytelling. Voice acting is good with none of the voice standing out in their roles. Their characters all act the same, and they did the best with what they were given.

If the movie had more going on other than just teenagers being shy about confessing their feelings than it could of had a better chance of standing out. Seeing similarly written characters within the same movie all face the same issues without any distinguishable traits is not my idea of a good romance. There’s not much to seek your teeth into other than the surprisingly good soundtrack it has, but other than that if you want to be lost in excitement for a love story I suggest looking elsewhere.

Rating: 4/10

(Am I) Unique Blogger Award Tag Post

Well this is a surprise. When I think about unique I am the furthest thing from that definition. In fact, before typing this opening I looked up the definition for unique on Dictionary, and it said “everyone is capable of being one of a kind, except Arsene_Lucifer. F*&% that guy!”. Of course I thought this was a troll until I actually looked it up in my own dictionary, and it said the same thing! Refusing to believe this I asked random people on the streets the definition the of unique. They all told me to go away. It’s as if I’ve been living in a entirely different world than I thought I was a part of. Only one way to get over this revelation, blogging! Firstly, those rules.


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  • Display the award!
  • Thank the person who nominated you, and post a link to their blog on your blog. (Try and include a little bit of promotion!)
  • Answer the questions they’ve written for you!
  • Nominate bloggers and give them three questions in the spirit of sharing love and solidarity within our blogging family!

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Look at Asta! He craves that recognition XD

Before I answer the questions I would like to thank, and provide some kind words about our sponsor Eumiiboo. Do you like reading, but don’t what to read? Well don’t worry because Sakura Galleria is all about further adding things to your reading backlog. Covering a wide arrange of comedy, romance, horror, and you name it Webtoons that’ll make you wish you had more time to read muahaha! Not only that, but you’ll get her thoughts on anime music, manga, and discussion pieces all for the low, low price of absolutely free! Best part of all, she’s pretty good at it. So go check it out! Do it, she holding my Pandas hostage!

Now that we returned to our regularly scheduled blog, lets get to the questions!


If you were to describe your life based on a anime character, who would it be, and of course why?  

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That’s a tough one. I guess I’ll have to go with Yato from Norgami. Much like Yato, I tend to generally go around doing odd favors, except for people I know. Just like with Yato, his jobs will lead him to some strange situations to almost comical level. Whenever I share my stories in Bobsamurai’s Discord server they tell me my stories sounds like things out of a sitcom. I’m inclined to agree when you have stories that includes a car getting blown up, helping out a friend to fix his problem vomiting on women, taking one of my bosses daughter out to prom as a favor, going into a gay club to help my friend get a guy he has a crush on be jealous, and so many other random things.

Another thing I would say I have in common with Yato is his goofball nature despite the dark past he has. I try to maintain some fun in my life despite the hand life dealt me with. Because hey, there’s no point in moping around as I eventually gotta move forward since you can’t run away from your future.

Now let’s try to get personal, what was one of the anime’s you’ve watch that left an impact on your life, or perhaps change your view in a certain point in your life.

In Cardcaptor Sakura case, it was specifically episode 22, that unexpectedly moved me in a way I wasn’t expecting it too. The series did a good job providing me with a cast of likable characters who grew on me. Then come in episode 22 getting me on a emotional level, and actually made me tear up from happiness of the strong family bond presented between Sakura, and her father. It was touching to the point it made me consider wanting to be a father one day. I can’t name you another piece of media that ever made me consider that.

In 2003’s Fullmetal Alchemist, there’s a funeral scene that has more hard hitting the second time around. I knew the death of this certain character was coming, but it didn’t make it any less gut wrenching, and shocking seeing it a second time. That funeral scene was very sad for me to watch, and is one of the most powerful moments I’ve seen in any anime. It’s only during the closing credits did I realize I teared a up bit.

Both of these anime have a strong theme revolving around families, and both make made me appreciate the same thing even more after watching them. Serving as a reminder no matter how distant the bridge between me, and my family can be at times they’ll always be my family. In a very cliche way, for better, and worse.

Imagine, you have been chose to create a crossover between three anime series, which would it be and why?

For my answer I would combine Gundam, Neon Genesis Evangelion, and Serial Experiment Lain. A odd combination right? Well with Gundam I get the mecha action, and war politics cover, while Neon Genesis Evangelion has the psychology, and Serial Experiment Lain has existentialism. If I combined story elements from all three anime it’ll be a clusterfuck to manage the information delivered to the viewer, yet I would like to see that. Something like Lain diving into the wire to see all kinds of reaction people have in this world that has mecha wars, and end of world monsters to content with would be interesting.

Witnessing these series to trying to make something coherent in their crossover would be a blast to watch. As for the character interaction side that’ll unlikely happen given Shinji doesn’t want to get in the robot, Lain is addicted to the web, and Ray Amuro hates war. Although, if there is ever a Gundam crossover with Neon Genesis Evangelion I’m still happy with that.

Now my turn to ask the questions muahaha!

  • What’s the most challenging post you’ve written for your blog?
  • If you had to choose between making your husbando/waifu a real person, or being in charge of making a continuation to one of your favorite series which would you choose? Of course, don’t forget the why.
  • Which animal from any anime is your spirit animal?

Now the one thing you’ve all been waiting for. Time to see who wins the big one. My nominees for unique bloggers are:

Jenn

(Not Angry) Average Joe Reviews

Zainou

If you’ve already been nominated, I would apologize, but that just makes you twice as unique. And the winner is, oh my gosh! It’s a three way tie! Never in my entire life hosting such an event has this ever happen! Congratulations everyone! Give yourself a round of applause. You’re all wonderful bloggers.

It’s my time to make my exit, and let the offline me at this time get back to working at his miserable job. Muahaha, wait that’s also me! I’ll see you in the next post. Sayonora bloggers!

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Bye! Bye!

Big Fish & Begonia (2018)

Other than vague knowledge of the famous story of Journey To the West novel I know absolutely nothing about Chinese mythology, yet I don’t need to in order to be completely absorbed in Big Fish & Begonia. Embodying one of my favorite aspect of animation is it unique ability for visual storytelling. Some nuances might be lost in translation unless you’re well verse into that country’s culture, but what is never lost are the limitless possibilities of what you can experience through animation.

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Look how that cute Fish is. Worth all the trouble it brings.

Big Fish & Begonia is set in in the realm of The Others, a sort of parallel dimension that controls the seasons and tides on Earth and is where the souls of humans go after they past. Our leading lady Chun, a 16-year-old girl, travels to the human world in the form of a dolphin and forms a connection with a human boy. The first thing this movie gets out of it way is it world building. Setting up the important pieces of how souls are handle in this world, and later on expanding on them to fuel it main conflict. All the important details involving the world function is fleshed out while leaving enough unanswered to give it world a mysterious allure.

One of my ongoing issues about fantasies is the quick fix magic becomes in their stories. You’ll get that quick magic fix here, but there’s an effort to express consequences for one’s action I feel don’t come across as strongly in other fantasy stories. There’s a comment made by a character how the newer generation doesn’t value life when he frequently sees them throwing it away so easily. The whole film is dedicated to characters making sacrifices for another love one in multiple situations. Doing so in a way that paints the subject with some manner of complexity. Detailing it in a way where the reasoning behind it makes sense, but the action taken is unreasonable with drastic results.

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Taking a boat ride through the clouds with this thing, illogical all the way.

No other character embodies this better than Qiu. He has the most tragic arch out of any character in the film. Through Qiu, the film tackles the theme of unrequited love while adding to the already well explored theme of sacrifices, and consequences. Everything revolving around Qiu is fully realize becoming the heavier emotional core of the film. It’s nearly impossible not to sympathize with Qiu wanting to protect his childhood best friend Chun as the world crumbles around him. While the film still get its happy ending, there’s a mid-credit scene that ensures you don’t forget about the significance of these characters sacrifices.

The story is structured nearly flawlessly. Allowing plenty of room be taken under it spell through a sense of wonder when Chun briefly explores the human world, and realm of The Others. Through Chun the viewer will be able to see a harsher side of The Others realm like Chun never witness before. Doing a magnificent job getting across how hard hitting it is for Chun to see everything around her crumble for the value of another life.

Preventing itself from becoming heavy handed the film also has some nice subtlety to its storytelling. None of the characters action are over explained. Instead the film drops some subtle visual reminders in certain scenes to help viewers make the connection easier. One area I’m most happy with is handling the discussion on the worth of human life. From Chun perspective her experience make her value human life a lot more than the adults of The Other realm that simply sees the existence of Kun (a human reincarnated into a Dolphin) as anything more a harm to the balance of the worlds. This plot point nicely sits in the shades of grey having it a strength.

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Ray woman here, kinda pointless.

There’s a rat woman character in the movie who goes into the human world who gets forgotten about. Providing a false villain for no reason considering she didn’t add much to the overarching story besides adding a plot hole. Another issue is how Chun affection for Kun is handle. It feels like Chun falls in love with Kun over the fact that he just saved her life, and is willing to sacrifice everything for him. This is salvaged by the fact that through montages it gets across the bond they build over time. There’s also the absent of dialogue shared between Chun, and Kun unable to build the bond to a point where it easy to accept Chun goes as far she does to rescue Kun’s life.

When looking at the sums of it parts there’s some oversights on the storytelling front. On the whole, in its effort to create vast sweeping emotion it makes it possible to be lost in the moment. By pacing itself just right it narrative shortcomings aren’t lingered on for long. Going head first with beautiful visuals, and big emotions expressed by it characters. I’m not excusing the story’s shortcomings, but when I got swept up in the moment those shortcomings were the furthest thing from my mind. Well, except maybe the 3, or 4 times it had the someone got pooped on jokes. Those jokes took me out of its majesty temporarily.

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So beautiful. If only I could frame gifs!

Animated by B&T studio the animation is richly detailed with a mixture of digital animation, and some light usage of 3D. My biggest surprise is the 3D in Big Fish & Begonia blends nicely with the 2D art. It is very noticeable, but good enough that it doesn’t take you out of the moment. There’s plenty of times where the animation shine creating dreamy like imagery like a scene involving Chun getting a ferry ride through the clouds, and giving off a oceanic like effect when riding roaring through the clouds. All the while maintaining high detail with so much moving on screen. Like a scene involving a giant stuffed rat that houses a vast array of real rats that leave it to forage before sewing themselves back up inside has much details to marvel at.

In particular the finale has plenty of chaos incurring in the background of the world brought to life by stunning details, and smooth movement sparring no details on its particle effects. At night the ocean reflects the sky, it’s stars and the sublime hues present; while during the day it is almost invisible and many objects look like they are floating through air to create a dreamy mood. It’s beautiful movie to look at with its lush color palette creating one very colorful movie. Sometimes giving off the visual finesse comparable to a Miyazaki movie.

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The movie is filled with great imagery like this.

The English dub is great, especially with Stephanie Sheh, and Johnny Yong Bosch in the leading roles. Johnny Yong Bosch in particular as Qiu is gut wrenching, and a emotional powerhouse. It’s easily one of his best performances as a voice actor. He steals the show with ease. Then Stephanie Sheh who is also good manages to pull a convincing performance. She’s able make you believe what her character believes in a short amount of time. One downside to the English dub are the mouth movement are mistimed with the English dialogue. So you’ll characters speak while their mouths don’t move for a bit early on. It doesn’t happen constantly, but is noticeable.

The music is composed by Kiyoshi Yoshida. It’s sweeping, and epic doing justice every scene it’s used. Offering a peaceful quality during calmer moments, and a feeling of other worldly dread when things escalate. Finally, the ending theme “Jiao Xi Ru Feng” by Xu Jiaying appropriately ends the movie with a epic ballad that’s somber, and warm.

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Visually one of my favorite still from the movie, and also one of the best scenes.

In a 24 minute documentary about the making of this movie it started life as a short film through a group of very passionate individuals in 2004. Through the course of 12 years B&T Studio would hone their skills doing various commercials, and short films, but would lack funding to complete the feature film. The studio goes into a failed endeavor making a game which dug them into a bigger financial hole than before. People leave the project, and it seems hopeless. Much like the movie itself, the trails to finished the movie required plenty of sacrifices. Every product has their share of setbacks, but few of those works have their passion seep through every frame on screen. One thing that is vividly expressed in everything about the movie, even without knowing it’s production history is the passion is strongly felt from watching it.

Big Fish & Begonia is an monumental achievement for Chinese animation. It’s visually absorbing from beginning to end, with a highly imaginative world it takes advantage off, and a story that’s easy to get become lost in makes one wonderful experience. The sums of it parts are muddle, but the whole thing is nothing short of amazing. I highly recommended Big Fish & Begonia for any fans of animation, and movie fans in general.

Rating: 10/10

Anime-Breakdown: Flavors of Youth (2018)

Producer Noritaka Kawaguchi whose name is attached to such projects like Garden of Words, Your Name, and Children Who Chase Lost Voices brings you an anime film about life in China. It might seem odd at first a Japanese producer making this movie until you remember Japan isn’t new to outsourcing their animation to China. In this case specifically it’s a co-production between Chinese animation company Haoliners Animation League, and CoMix Wave Film from Japan. The later of which is best know for animating Your Name, and several of Makoto Shinkai other works. Under the helm of three directors Flavors of Youth takes a gamble on it talents ability that doesn’t payoff. On a technical level it shows China is capable of matching the visuals of Japan best animated movies, but other than that this anothology has nothing else to show for it.

Sunny Breakfast (Hidamari no Choushoku)

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Noodles are the only thing that gives him meaning in life.

The first anthology film is also the weakest without question. This short film marks the debut of internet-based filmmaker Yi Xiaoxing, and his inexperience shows. This short movie is about Xiaomin reminiscing about his youth, but mostly monologuing poetically about his love of noodles like its the only reason life is worth living. He expresses his excessive love for noodles to a point it becomes hilarious. Credit to Crispin Freeman who managed to properly portray his character despite the dialogue he was given to work with.

Here’s a few of those lines:

“Your tongue go numb. Little by little it forgets the sensation of its home town. That flavor I lost. Now seems to haunt me.”

“The mushroom were always strong, and fresh. The kukurage with its firm texture. Each added their own unique layer to the thick broth that crater them. Creating a flavor that made my heart soar.”

“The eggs soft, and fluffy that made the noodles richer as they slid down your throat. That light amber soup, that brought out the flavor of every ingredient.”

Why this short movie is the worst in this anthology is that it tries too hard to be dramatic in a short amount of time, and pretty badly while I’m at it. It tries to pull at the heart strings by having Xiaomin’s grandmother die towards the end. Something that could have worked if Xiaomin monologue about spending time with his grandma instead of describing how good his noodle tasted, or how inferior noodles now taste compare to when he was a child.

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“The rain can’t fill the hole in my heart, like those noodles”

Going as far as describing the texture, and the warmth it gives him as a child versus the cold, and heartless taste when he’s an adult. It’s difficult to take Xiaomin seriously about what he lost in his youth, and having to move on from it when more time is spend on him passionately describing what he eats than showing what he experienced.

This story also suffers the most the difference in culture. Apparently in China food is a big deal since it’s the basis for family bonding, and socializing. Although, the short film itself failed to establish this clearly to the viewer so its failure is it own undoing assuming everyone knows about the importance of food in Chinese culture.

Sunny Breakfast gets a 2 out of 10. Only positive is that it’s unintentionally funny hearing the dialogue in the English dub, and is the shortest in the anthology. The animation is lovely to look at.

 

A Small Fashion Show (Chiisana Fashion Show)

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Oh look, something else pretty to look at besides the background.

This one is a bit better, but suffers from feeling shoehorn in its storytelling, and a forced happy ending. It’s about a woman who is a fashion model who feels she’s getting replace by younger models. Oh, there’s also a storyline about finding yourself, and being a family. The simplistic story is at odds with itself. On one hand it displays the toll the modeling career as taken on her health, and how badly it treats her since the modeling business will quickly forget about her. Then on the other hand there’s family drama she faces with a sister she hardly spend time with, and the most meaningful conversation they is arguing with each other. These conflicts are quickly resolve by the main character simply believing in herself which somehow fixes everything.

Unlike the first film, you’ll see the main character interact with the people around her instead of being told what’s happening. It struggles to develop characters since their conflicts is a lot more layered than it can explore in its run time. The rival model that appears in the story amounts to nothing more a tool to progress the story. Add on top of the fact the rival malicious intent isn’t even explained, nor is that conflict properly resolved. Another thing I find issue in this film is whatever commentary it wanted to have about the fashion industry is clumsily handled. There is a scene where the model has to soak in the world moving on quickly from her when looking at a billboard with a younger model. The idea behind this scene is good, but given the force happy ending it makes this scene, and other feel redundant.

One thing that is consistent among these short movies is they are all pretty to look to look at. The voice acting in this short film is the best since the actors have a lot more to work with, and the progression of events is more natural so the voice actors won’t overact. This film was directed by directed by CoMiX Wave 3DCG chief Yoshitaka Takeuchi whose lack of experience also shows. On the animation front he knows what he’s doing, but storytelling he has no clue what he’s doing.

A Small Fashion Show gets a 3 out 10. In wanting a happy ending it rushes its conflict ending up shallow in its attempt to give its two cent on the fashion industry, and the importance of family.

Shanghai Love (Shanghai Koi)

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I the Mighty music is putting them down

The best short film in the anthology, though not by much. It’s biggest strength is feeling like a condense Makoto Shinkai film. You’ll get the lovely animation, the tragic romance story, and you’ll sadly get teenagers acting very stupid. Unlike the previous films, this one is less in your face about it message. Sorta, it combines the failed attempt at tear jerking of Sunny Breakfast with the under written characters of A Small Fashion Show. It also contains the dumbest characters in this anthology when you look at the finer details.

The main character of this story is Li Mo (not a vehicle who wished to be a real boy as far as I know) an angry high school guy who has crush on Xiao Yu, a girl who is implied to be his childhood friend. So the girl’s parent want her to apply to a prestige high school, and the boy wants to go to said prestige high school since he likes her a lot. That’s seems stupid, but pretty harmless until you realize the Li Mo doesn’t want Xiao Yu to know he’s applying to the same school. On top of that, he also says to the one friend he tells about this plan that he’ll denounce their friendship if he tells Xiao Yu about the plan. This contrived conflict makes it impossible to sympathize with any of its characters. All Li Mo has to do is tell Xiao Yu he’s planning on going to the same school as she is, and problem solve, and of course that doesn’t happen. 

None of the characters are fleshed out to care about them. Xiao Yu suffers the most from this since she’s meant to be Li Mo love interest, and the only way the film develops her is by mentioning she got physically abused by her parents. It just feels like a cheap manipulative ploy than it does a characteristic. As Li Mo there’s not much to like either. The writing didn’t know how to depicts friends who haven’t seen each other in a long time so it simply has Li Mo acting like a jerk to her for no reason. He’s a victim of the dumb writing since he, and Xaio Yu communicate through messages recorded on a cassette tape. The movie uses the excuse he’s studying so he won’t listen to a certain tape resulting in his heartache, though again, he did bring this on himself.

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I assure you, this ain’t a still from Your Name. The character designs are similar though.

Li Mo character arc is somewhat competently handle. Exploring a character who lives with regrets is decently explored. Giving you a good idea how much regret he feels about this certain event in his past. Same with it touching on parents being hard in pushing their kids towards a good education. It’s only mentioned without delving into it theme, but doesn’t get drown out by all the melodrama on screen. Another one of its positive is being written in a way where it tries to make you forget about the logical, and be caught in the moment of the story. It sometimes succeed in that until logic rolls in its head. 

We now come to the ending that negates the whole experience of the story, and sweeps it under the rug. If it wanted to get across the whole point Li Mo lost out on a experience of his life because of his action it would have hit home a lot more with a sad ending. The happy ending is fine, but with the direction it was heading it undermines what came before it.

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Once again, this movie is pretty look at. 

This short film is visually the most outstanding with its detail background of a populated China from simple things like oncoming traffic to the urban streets of Shanghai. Everything move very smoothly without much of the 3D standing out in the movie in general. The music here is okay. It’s melodramatic for sure, but actually noticeable where in the previous short films the music wasn’t a presence. The one downside to this short film is Ross Butler performance as Li Mo. He doesn’t deliver any of his dialogue with any emotion, and simply sounds bore about everything he talks about.

Shanghai Love is directed by Li Haoling who unlike the previous two director actually has some experience under his belt. While he still has room for improvement he shows promise in being able to replicate the spirit of a Makoto Shinkai movie through his own style. Out of all the directors who worked on this, Li Haoling easily shows the most promise.

Shanghai Love gets a 6 out of 10. The characters are pretty stupid, but it manages to capture the feel of a Shinkai movie pretty well. It’s the best simply because it’s direction is clear, and direct in its simple ambitions. 

 

There’s a post credit scene, though it doesn’t help much as the characters basically say they’ll move forward. A good message for certain, but not delivered in the way intended. It assumes anyone will become lost in its visuals to overlook the haphazard writing. If there was an overarching theme it gets lost underneath the one dimensional characters, the forced happy endings, and a general lack of proper storytelling from two of the directors involved. It wants to pull at the heartstrings, but ironically feels artificial, and soulless like the very thing it tried, and failed to criticize.

Rating: 3/10 (10/30 all short films added together)

Cringe Clover

Normally how I would prefer writing about any anime series I’ve completed is finishing it first, and spending who knows giving my general thoughts on it. This time I’m going to change it up because Black Clover has given me so much I want to express in just 10 episodes so far. This will obviously include spoilers so if you don’t want to be spoiled, even on minor stuff, I recommend you skip this post.

So yes I’m watching Black Clover. Yes I know it’s constantly bashed by the anime community. Yes I know how generic it is, and yet that didn’t deterred me from watching it. I was in the mood to watch a shonen, and given the fact I tend to be evenly split with agreeing with the general public on anime why not give Black Clover a shot. I guess to further add context I’ve also been told by one elitist on Discord that Black Clover is the worst shonen of all time. Going out of his way to tell me I would hate it more than My Hero Academia which I constantly claim to be the worst shonen I’ve ever seen.

So the ever alluring negativity around Black Clover made it inevitable I would get around to seeing it when it got an English dub. I typically watch my shonen anime with the English dubbed since it’s easier for me to get into. Okay, except for My Hero Academia since Deku voice actor was annoying, and Assassination Classroom dropped the ball on Kuro’s voice actor in the English dub. Well enough about that, time to get into Cringe Clover.

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Here be Nero, on the top of my wall of text.

To preface my actual thoughts, Black Clover is set in a world where magic is everything. Orphans Asta, and his rival/friend Yuno live in this world; Yuno is exception at using magic, and our protagonist Asta has no magic powers at all. Both dreaming to become the Wizard King, the world’s most powerful Wizard. So I’m going to ignore the fact that Black Clover does everything you would expect a fighting shonen to do. Not because it’s a detriment to the anime, but even without the shonen tropes there’s still the high fantasy aesthetics to the series. I don’t like high fantasy in general since too many of them feel the same in aesthetics so it already has that going against it.

Where to begin when it comes to episode one. Well, for two minutes the anime starts of okay showing Asta, and Yuno being dropped off at a church as babies. The only thing to comment on this scene is baby Asta is apparently strong enough to kick a grown man in the face, and make blood come out of his nose. I’m not even sure if that’s remotely possible, and frankly my dear, I ain’t going to ponder too much on it. After that it skips to fifteen years later.

By the time you get to the two minutes mark is where it takes a nose dive into, yep, cringe territory. It does just about everything in its power to ensure the viewer dislikes Asta from the beginning. A character who is constantly shouting at the top of his lungs, and don’t even get started on his “SISTER LILLY WILL YOU MARRY ME!” fatuation. For starter, Sister Lilly is a nun, and no matter how many times Asta get told she can’t married because she’s a woman of the church Asta keeps on doing it. The first minute you see Asta as a 15 year old teenager he shouts at a nun to marry him, and continues to shout for the rest of the episode.

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Hey look, the anime is my doing my job for me.

During the first five minutes, there’s a orphaned kid named Nash who just bluntly info dumps aspect of the world onto Asta. You know, a character who lived in this world for 15 years, and would know that everyone in the world has magic except for him. That was clumsy exposition delivery. Asta than quickly does crunches leading to more shouting. Unlike future episodes, episode 1 oddly has strange of zany character movements. Guessing they thought it would be hilarious to introduce the characters in this manner. Spoiler, it’s not.

After a bit of comedic banter the viewer gets told Yuno, and Asta use to get along well. One thing the episode is not good at is exposition. It feels too much like the characters are directly speaking to the audience watching the anime instead of to other characters. Episode 1 would also introduce the first of many royal wizards who hate commoners. In ten episodes you’ll get about 4 characters Asta encounter that simply hate commoners. Just in case you don’t get the point, the dialogue they spout is what you would expect from one dimensional baddies. So you can look forward to many “Filthy commoners! You should be happy I’m even acknowledging your wasteful existence” type of dialogue.

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This moment is both hilarious, and pathetic to witness 

Another thing the first episode shoves in the viewer face is Asta is the underdog, and Yuno is a prodigy. Given the notion the anime writing is far from subtle stuff like this become par for the course. It is worth complaining about, but every single time it happens not so much. There’s a scene where all the children whom reached 15 years of age go to a ceremony to get their Grimoire; basically a book whose length, and thickness is filled with various degrees of magic, and different capabilities. At Grimoire Tower, for somebody who has no magic ability of any kind Asta obviously doesn’t get his. It is absolutely laughable, and painful witnessing such a pathetic character saying he’ll be the wizard king when everything is against him. If the anime didn’t give me such a poor first impression of Asta I would probably would feel sorry for him.

After the ceremony is over, deep in the forest, Asta shouts (yay!) that he ain’t giving up. Then we Yuno getting picked on by two royal wizards who don’t like the fact they got overshadowed when Yuno got picked by the four leaf clover grimoire. A legendary grimoire that was bestowed on the first wizard king which basically means its very powerful, and is lucky. This leads to the episode’s villain attacking the teens, and attempting to take the four leaf clover grimoire from Yuno. This is where Asta gets the bright idea to help Yuno, and the two teens picking on him. Things obviously go disastrously, and through the philosophy of believe it Asta gets the Black Clover when on the verged of death. He gets beaten up by 3D chains, but that ain’t important. What is important is the first episode ends on a pointless cliffhanger since the episode villain is quickly beaten in episode 2.

Once I saw the credits roll for episode one I realize one thing, I fucked up, and yet I looked forward to this mess of anime. Everything about episode one was so questionable, so messy, so clueless, and all in the right ways I enjoy a trainwreck. It was incompetent in all fronts, and the people behind it are clearly trying to make something special. I doubt it’ll reach the likes of so bad it’s good anime like Brain Powerd, and Mad Bull 34, but I can tell 12 episodes in I have no qualms about continuing it.

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Asta is determined to impurify Sister Lilly.

Sadly episode 2 is basically filler. All it does is needlessly expand on a plot point quickly establish in the first episode regarding Asta, and Yuno’s past. If the anime was going to have episode 2 set in the past it would be better to just switch the order of the episodes, and slightly edit them to play out better in the long run. Instead Studio Pierrot thought it was better to do this for some unknown reason. Also, even when beaten up Asta still asks Sister Lilly to marry him.

One noteworthy thing about episode 2 is a grown man tries to take the necklace of a young Yuno so he can buy beer. Once Asta goes out searching for Yuno, and sees someone took his necklace Asta tries to retrieve it. A young Asta gets beaten by the grown man, and the grown eventually gives the necklace back because Asta won’t give up. Upon seeing this I was baffled this grown man beating up on a kid for minutes just gave up so easily after pummeling Asta for minutes. It’s not like Asta hurt the grown man in any way. Oh yeah, episode 2 also forgets to show the well being of the two royal wizards picking on Yuno in episode 1 that episode 3 had to fix that.flawlessinsecurebrant-small

So Asta obviously beats the first major foe in the series, and finally gets his grimoire. You would think this is when the story is finally going to kick off, but episode 3 ends with Asta, and Yuno making it to the capital to take their Magic Knight Entrance Exams. In hindsight, the anime taking it time to flesh out the characters is fine. Seeing Asta trying to achieve his goal to become the wizard king, and prove to a orphan he shouldn’t stop dreaming because of his status is worth cheering for. However, it feels like a drag when Black Clover bound the mold of fighting shonens, and does exactly those things without deviating from it. Becoming a double edge sword to commit to what it wants to be shamelessly. 

While editing this, I completely forgot about the scene where Nash tells Asta to stop dreaming because their orphans. In this moment when Nash is down, Asta decides to go up him, his right hand on Nash shoulder, and yell in his ears that he can dream. So your earbuds ain’t the only ones that’s getting destroyed.

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The first among many awkward looking faces.

Episode 4 has Asta, and Yuno entering the capital, and spending the entire episode on taking exams. For someone who has no magic power Asta obviously fails them. Some of the supporting cast are introduced here like the captains of the different guild of the Magic Knights, but aren’t important for now. This episode is noteworthy because it’s the introduction of currently my favorite character know as Nero, the anti bird. The anti-birds are basically birds that flock to people who have little to no mana ability. Since Asta uses Black Clover which negates magic, anti-birds are attracted to Asta naturally. Nero simply stays around on Asta head seeming unimpress with his adventures. His stoic impression is worthy enough to have captured my attention.

From this point onward I now finally generalize my issues with Black Clover. For starter, a majority of the royal wizards are written to be one dimensional villains. In episode 4 you get two examples of this; the obvious being being Sekke, a wizard Asta befriends while taking the exam. For the final exam, all wizards have to pair up with a partner, and do battle with them. Sekke pairs up with Asta since he has no magic ability, and shows his true character by boasting how much he simply chose to partner up with Asta for a easy victory. Obviously that doesn’t happen, and Asta win in one hit! The other example is when Noelle Silva (first seen, but not properly introduced) get told by her brother that her existence is unnecessary. Twelve episodes in, and Black Clover been proven so far to be incapable of writing a villain who’s motivation isn’t to simply pick on commoners!

The series attempts in humor tends to be cringey for a lack of a better term. You’ll wince at Black Clover attempts at comedy either missing the mark because of the punchline, or questionable to the point you’ll have no choice but to laugh. Like in episode 5, when Yami (Captain of the Black Bull Magic Knight) asks Asta how long it takes for him to take a shit, and Asta attempts to give him a precise calculation of how long his turd is.

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The magic that is Black Clover.

Moving on, episode 4 introduces Clover Clip which are basically shorts at the end of an episode animated in a chibi style. These Clover Clip tend to better in telling jokes, and are there to be silly. In episode 5 you just basically get the results of the exams, and Yuno gets accepted no problem. In fact, all five captains raise their hands when he get called up since he proved himself a very capable wizard. Also, it helped in the same episode Yuno fights a royal who despises, and thinks poorly on commoners. Of course given past events this means the heroes will come out on top.

When Asta gets called up none of the captains raise their hands. It’s only after Asta make the bold proclamation that he’s going to be the wizard king that Yami, captain of the Black Bull, shows Asta his huge mana powers. Once Asta refuses to back down he officially joins the worst of the Magic Knights. Where is Yuno you might ask? He’s with the Golden Dawn whom he believes will be the surest way to achieve his goal. Episode 5 finally ends when Asta gets a rude first impression of the Black Bulls by getting a fireball to the face. Not forget in the background our fellow Nero, the anti-bird, isn’t far behind from making his classic stoic impression.

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Nero facial expression is a accurate representation of my own while watching Black Clover.

Episode 6 basically introduces Asta, and the viewer to the member of the Black Bulls. Consisting of Yami Sukehiro the laid back captain who shows his subordinates tough love by giving them tough missions. Magna Swing who is the (not actually) cool dude with the glasses who’s just as hyperactive as Asta, comes from small village like Asta, and his grimoire allows him to throw fireballs. Hence, his last name being Swing expect his baseball gimmick to be more balant later on…I’m predicting that’ll be the case at least. Vanessa Enoteca who is a pink hair wizard who so far mostly appears in her lingerie (not I’m going to complain with everything else in Black Clover pick on) who is relaxed, an alcoholic, caring, lazy, and doesn’t mind flirting around with the other squad members.

Gauche Adlai who’s only defining trait is that he is a siscon, and yes his nose bleeds thinking about his younger sister (because casually imply incest is exactly what I need in my anime). Gordon Agrippa who speaks so quietly you can’t hear him, or read his subtitles. Can’t forget he’s a pale man who dresses like a depress clown version of a Gestapo. Luck Voltia who hasn’t done anything yet 10 episodes in, Grey who is just a monstrosity for now, Charmy Pappitson who loves stuffing her face with sweets, and Finral Roulacase who just teleport.  

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Also introduce in episode 4, Asta’s third hand.

Now that you’re introduced to the group of outcast the rest of the episode is simply Asta proving his worth to the other Magic Knights, and passing a test to get accepted. He passes, and becomes an official member of the Black Bulls. After that is episode 7 where Asta meets the other new member of the Black Bull; Noelle Silva earlier seen all the way back in episode 4, and in the opening animation. Before that though, I have a issue with Funimation using the word dank in the English dub. It feels completely out of place, and upon hearing that word I paused the episode, and did something else for a bit because of how irksome it was. Seriously, don’t ever use the word dank in your English dub! It’ll sound dated years from now.

Episode 7 is basically Noelle overcoming her “I’m royalty. Don’t look at me peasants” snobbishness (sorta), and accepts she’s officially one of the Black Bulls. Her backstory of being mocked for not being able to use her magic ability correctly is a good one. However, the presentation of it is over the top that it comes across as a petty issue. Noelle over reacts when Asta discover her not being able to use her magic she nearly gets herself killed. Best part of all no one in the Black Bulls cares because that’s the whole of being a Magic Knight. Learning to use your magic.

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Not even Nero cares if Noelle could use her magic correctly.

Okay, now I generalize my issues again. The cast of characters aren’t sympathetic at this point in the series. They are just wacky, and tend to overreact to every situation. Black Clover is an expert in making sure the first impressions you get on its characters be negative. Another is making nearly every high class, or royal character be out to be one dimensional ass holes. Just in case the point that royalty look down on commoner wasn’t clearly gotten across it’ll do it until it gets tire of it.

Another thing I’m going to comment on is the animation is cheap looking. In movement there’s nothing much to complain about, but when it comes to the characters faces there numerous instances where Asta face is just off. It either be Asta design is that terrible he doesn’t look good in many angles, or Studio Pierrot rushed this production. Either, the animation side doesn’t impress so far. Especially the action which lacks choreography in favor of flashy looking battles which don’t have any flare to them. Cringe Clover Still 23Cringe Clover Still 22

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Black Clover is obviously bad with faces.

We get to episode 8 where all that happens is Yami, and Magna loose at a poker game. They loose their clothes, and have to do a favor for an old friend of Magna. Seyhe is an old man who basically helps Magna indirectly become the man he is currently. This backstory is actually done well, and fleshes out Magna decently. It’s surprising given how badly it can handle character development that Manga backstory turns out to be decent. As you would expect, they go to a village to kill wild boars disturbing the peace in Sosshi Village (Magna home village), and face greater trouble than they expected. While I’m on episode 8, there’s no way I’m buying the thing below is a broom.

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What Black Clover considers to be a broom. It even got sunglasses!

Episode 8 – 10 is Asta, and Noelle first mission, and takes place in Sosshi Village. As you might guess the village get taken over by a group of wizards looking for a stone, and yes, they hate those damn filthy commoners! Again, Black Clover the “We hate filthy commons” archetype again. I would stop caring, but at the same time it’s infuriating it keeps using this! One thing I would like to comment on is in Episode 9; towards the end of the episode Noelle monologues how much she doesn’t want to die in a backwater hick village. However, mere seconds later a little begs for her help, and just like that turns around to help protect the village. This happens in the matter of seconds making Noelle look pretty bad.

After a magical fight between the evil wizards they end up killing themselves before offering up any answers. Oh yeah, Seyhe is dead, and Magna says his final words to him at his tombstone. Can’t forget Nero finds a stone, and the ladies thinks he’s cute. Can’t blame them if Asta, and the other male members of the Black Bulls is what they got to look at every day. With that, I’m going to conclude my expected long run impression on Black Clover so far. Still, this turned out even longer than I expected.

Despite my many issues with Black Clover from the questionable world building, messy character writing, and repetitive villain motivations it doesn’t stray off much from what I would expect from a shonen. It’s uninspired for sure, but unlike other shonens I’ve seen, it simply accepts that fact, and revels in it all the way. For me, that alone wouldn’t make it the worst shonen I’ve seen because it understands what it is, and does just that. So to that person who thought I was going to hate Black Clover more than My Hero Academia on Discord, you gotta do better than that seriously. If this is the worst shonen you’ve seen I envy you!

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An artistic recreation of me picking on Black Clover.

So what would I give Black Clover so far? I guess a 6 out of 10. I complained nonstop about it sure, but it’s easy to watch, doesn’t give me a headache with it bad writing like many bad shonen anime, embraces openly what it is, attempts to flesh out characters even through its bad pacing, and I find enjoyment in it, even in the none ironic ways at points. It’s a typical shonen with the aesthetics of a typical high fantasy. I expected a lot worst, and didn’t get that. I don’t like much of what I see, but I ca say for certain I don’t mind watching it. Even if it’s writing is grating at points.

My predictions for future episodes.

  • Asta gets a harem. There’s already Noelle, a tsundere who likes him for being nice to her, and a grown woman who teases him. Of course he would get one because Japan for some reason loves putting harems in anything with a high-fantasy setting recently.
  • Asta is going to fight more royal wizards, or magic knights that despise commoners.
  • Because it has a high fantasy setting there will either be a prophecy of a great evil returning to cause chaos in the land, or Asta, and company will have to collect a specific amount of a certain object (typically 3 pieces), and ensures they don’t get in the wrong hand.
  • Just like in Assassination Classroom, the group with the worst reputation starts showing up every other group in a number of challenges.
  • Asta will shout “SISTER LILLY WILL YOU MARRY ME”.
  • Asta will shout.
  • Hey since it’s being compared to the Naruto series. I predict Asta, and Yuno will not be bumping ugly anytime soon leaving its fujoshi fanbase disappointed.

I’m not sure if I’ll make another installment of Cringe Clover since who knows if the rest of the series will inspired me to write even more posts on it. If I do, I’ll call the next installment Cringe Clover 2: Electric Boogaloo. Sayonara until the next post.

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Pointlessly rambling about anime watchalongs

A majority of the time I watch anime alone, but on the off chance that I don’t have led to some, um, interesting experiences. Most of these happened on a Discord server that I use to visit frequently. Nowadays I make the occasional drop in, but not as frequently as I use too. I might expand on this down the line with something more coherent, but for now I shall ramble on about something related to anime.

I can’t remember exactly how the four of us came into this agreement, but me the lord of evil Lucifer, Gintoki the New Yorker, Josuke the Australian, and I’ll refer to the last person as Chill. Our obligatory female character who wouldn’t talk agreed to watch Rainbow by Madhouse together. Before the discovery of a site called Rabbit where it’s basically a site where you can watch things in group on a single screen. Me, and the other three folks had to find the episodes of Rainbow on our own, and then all start it at the same time. I saw it on my laptop so for me to check the Discord chat I would have to quickly go into another window to read what Chill said in the text chat said, and then quickly go back to the video player to make sure I read the subtitles quickly enough. Eventually I found an easier to do both.

So during our viewing of Rainbow I, and Josuke were in the indifferent party, and we had Gintoki, and Chill who enjoyed the first episode of Rainbow. So as we continued viewing Rainbow, we became more relaxed with each other, and openly mocked some things in the series. Like in episode 2 making fun of the fact of how easy it was for the prisoners to escape from prison. Me, and Josuke also gave silly reaction when seeing this one elderly character at an orphanage. She had the face that would turn a broken mirror into dust. Gintoki then told us a bit about his background, and how he could relate to the character living in a orphanage. Something like that, can’t remember to be honest. While he’s opening up to the entire group, in the back of my mind I’m thinking “Where did this come from! I thought we were just watching anime”.

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There she is, the woman who Gintoki nightmares!

What got me, Josuke, and Gintoki the most was in a later episode of Rainbow reading the line “I’ll rape the fuck out of her”, and the three of us burst out laughing! We still quote that line whenever we bring up terrible writing in anime. Despite all this negativity surrounding her, Chill acted like the fan girl, and loved every minute of Rainbow. Yes, even the “I’ll rape the fuck out of her”  line made her hate the character Ishihara (who says that line) that much more. Also during that episode, we had Naruto (his nickname) pop in one day to see what we were watching even though he had no idea what was going on. He liked the episode enough to check out the series, and it become one of his favorites. Something I still poke fun of, alongside everyone constantly bringing up a certain anime I hate.

For the first half of the anime it would basically be 50/50 in terms of what we thought. It wouldn’t be until the second half where I warmed up a little bit to it. We started not making fun of Rainbow as much for a little bit. It was strange going from poking fun of it, to taking it seriously, and then all of us, except Chill, being bored with it. Another thing we sometime did after each episode is talk about what we saw, and than babble on about random stuff. It didn’t matter how serious the anime was since the group was pretty casual with each other.

When we finally finished Rainbow, two of us didn’t like it (one of them being me), the other one thought it was alright, and finally Chill thought it was amazing. 11/10, better than water material we’re talking about here. Something this group watch provided for me is the discussion part of it. Instead of waiting for someone to eventually talk about an anime I watched either searching on a forum post, or a comment section. It was instantly there in the watchalong group, and the conversations typically ended up being more enjoyable than watching the anime themselves at times.

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Can’t forget this classic moment either.

The watchalongs, as they were called, eventually got bigger on the Discord server, and suddenly many others wanted to join. It got messy so instead of their being one massive watchalong group there’s a couple smaller ones. I would occasionally join on some of them before everyone got busy with their personal lives. Gintoki is still busy doing New York stuff, and Josuke is finding his inner artist learning the finest painting technique to paint a mural of Australia greatest person, Crocodile Dundee. As for Chill, she’s getting some kind of degree. It would be like a few months I think before I joined in on another watchalong group because my job didn’t want to give me a day off. They love working me 8 days a week.

The next series I saw with a group was Serial Experiment Lain. In the first episode of Serial Experiment Lain, in a Rabbit group watch there was a viewer, who I’ll refer to as Naruto (he likes it a lot). Naruto had to close his eyes, and stare away from the scream because he didn’t want to see a fictional character jumping off a roof. Needless to say it trigger hims seeing that. I would have asked Naruto if he was sure if he wanted to watch the anime, but the group just continued on with it. The experience was different since everyone was talking during the damn English dub! Making it impossible to catch important details when constantly hearing “This is boring” in a chat room.

The Serial Experiment Lain watchalong wasn’t quite as fun as Rainbow, but there were a few highlights. I decided to get the series on blu-ray, and watch it at home with my bro so I knew what was going to happen before anyone else. I took joy in seeing the group’s reaction to a number of things that transpire in the series. Especially Chill shocked reaction when hearing one of the characters played with herself.

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Artistic reaction of Chill’s reaction

Another highlight in that watchalong would be someone who I’ll refer to as Diamond Guy who makes the comment that Lain Iwakura was ugly out of nowhere. So I blurted, or typed out the first thing that came to mind that he was checking out a little girl. I, along with some other, picked on him for that as long as we kept watching Serial Experiment Lain. The reaction, as you would expect with a group who just talked over the English dub of an anime, is that they didn’t like it, or understood it. There was a also a discussion, and the rating we would give the series afterwards. There was this one elitist wannabe who just tried too hard to trash it by having little to back himself with. Granted, I did prefer the discussion I had with my brother after watching Lain since we went pretty deep into it themes, but the discussion was fun regardless.

Another thing I saw with this same group was King of Thorn. It’s an anime movie from 2009 by studio Sunrise, and it’s about something. The story was told in a confusing manner, and what better way to experience a sloppily told story than having people talk over it. Once again, we had that one guy trying to be an elitist, and saying things aren’t making sense when he talked over dialogue explaining things he was complaining about. Like barely realizing around 20 something minutes into the movie the main character has a sister.

This viewing stands out to me all because Naruto made a brief serious remark when I said I liked a character name Katherine because she was crazy, and slapped a kid. It started with him saying “Dude, that ain’t cool”. The only response I had to that was the kid was being annoying, and that woman made him silent through that slap. It brought me great joy. However, later on in the movie when Katherine started to become more crazy I referred to her as Psycho Bitch. I jokingly kept calling her Psycho Bitch, and saying she was my favorite character in the movie for being crazy. Long story short, Naruto says “Dude, making fun of people with mental disorder ain’t cool” in a serious tone. All I could think of is “You’re taking my comment way too seriously”.

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Must, keep, watching!

Luckily that didn’t kill the mood, and everything went back to normal. Especially me referring to Katherine as Psycho Bitch. When the movie ended everyone came to the agreement that it was a pretty mad movie, especially the clusterfuck of the climax that threw a bunch of nonsense at you. Like before, the group talked about the anime, and than simply had fun on talking about whatever came to mind. These watchalongs helped me make closer connection to these online friends I wouldn’t have otherwise. Of course it did cost me plenty of hours I could have spent sleeping, but then again I’m good enough at my job that even on a sick day I still perform better than a majority of my co-workers.

I would continue watching anime in different groups, and eventually learning more about the people who joined in. Finally receiving character development beyond one trait I recognize them for. So, where am I going with all this rambling about watching anime with other people? I really can’t say I just babbled on about random things that happened. Things at a certain point just all became a blur for me after a whilw. Maybe thinking about it in hindsight it’s anime that brought me, and other people on that Discord server together, regardless were we stand on anime.

Where did it lead me now exactly? Well, whenever possible I still chat, and check in on several people on that Discord server from time to time. Being more like a group of friends who know each other pretty well besides the fact we all like anime. My interactions in the Discord servers also led me to get invited into like over 10 Discord servers, only two of which I actually bother keeping up with. It also led me to appear in an episode of a friend’s podcast (I’m the dude with the jacket) on the Channel Gyre Media. Speaking of which, go check out his channel. He’s a pretty cool guy, with a cooler beard. He loves his My Hero Academia body pillow.

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Not sure what to put here. Have another WataMote gif

Talking, and watching anime was the introduction to meeting several of these people on Discord, and it got to a point where we can talk about anything now with each other, sometimes not even bringing up anime. It also led me to having a voice chat that went on for about 8 hours with dozens of people coming in, and leaving because of how chaotic it got. Anime, like any other form of medium, can be more than just a piece of entertainment you consume. It could be a way to make some good friends online, and offline.

Well, I guess that’s all I have to say in this series of jumble thoughts. I discarded this post three previous times because no matter what I did it didn’t come on out right to me. Felt too impersonal in a way. This post has no organization to it, but it’s more to true to how I would about talk about this with someone. I should actually end this before I go even further. So, um, keep watching anime, and talking about it. Especially that bad line of dialogue in Rainbow. Always remember that!

Hijacking the Create-A-Story Tag!: So Much Rain Edition

I wanted to take part in this tag, so instead of waiting to get tag I decided to start work on my own story two weeks ago, and take it from there. Little did I know this was going to be a lot more difficult than I thought. That was until during my lunch break at work I was listening to the song “Photobooth” by Death Cab For Cutie, and for some reason hearing the last verse on that song it suddenly clicked for me. It got me thinking about mine, and a friend experience when it comes to love over the past decade. Obviously I can’t fit all that happen to us in less than 1000 words, but that word limit got me instead to pinpoint certain events, and go crazy with expressing the feelings in them.

So the rules. Here they are.


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The Rules:

  1. You pick your first word, your setting, and your story genre from the list below. As individuals, your brand of creativity is unique to yours, so we want to highlight that by letting you choose from a bunch of words and creating something beautiful out of it.

Create A Story Tag

  1. The short story will have a limit of 1000 words. You do not need to write a story with 1000 words exactly. It could be 300, or 500 as long as it doesn’t surpass a thousand.
  2. YOU HAVE TWO WEEKS TO ANSWER THE TAG.
  3. You must tag three people to participate.
  4. Don’t forget to link back to Keiko (use her latest post for now) so she can collect all the stories. You can’t just link back to her WordPress, since she won’t be alerted of the pingback. You need to link back to a post or a page, because WordPress works like this.
  5. Use the Create-A-Story picture in the post.
  6. Copy and paste the rules in your tag post as well, so others can be clued in to the Create-A-Story rules.

So I chose the words Rain + School + Romance. Well, technically the last word I just took liberty on, and went all over the place with it. Thankfully, the rules flexiable. So, enjoy!


I guess all I’m trying to say is….

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“You’ll be lucky to live to your 30s”. Those words will remain carved in me. In this messy, dark locked room with the window closed. I lay down on this dirty bed filled with empty bottles, and cigarettes pack failing to enrapture me. Staring at the ceiling fan, I begin losing myself in spiraling thoughts again.

Some like me take pills, but other take chances. Finding my inner peace with my limited time I took a chance. Three years ago, waiting on that school rooftop on that first raining day. Holding an umbrella, as the rain kept pouring on waiting for her to come. The sound of rain got me every time. On that very day, I screamed inside at being broken in unerasable memories penetrating my mind, and darkness flowing into my very own eyes.

Two years ago, in a hallway. It started with a kiss. That one little moment set this whole thing in motion. Confessing what I wanted to hear, but not to me. Chaos went in motion among my thoughts. Seconds away from being in love, but alone lingering on every moment I wasted. Guess that’s another bottle to empty, and the rain embracing me outside as usual.

A year ago, slow dancing our prom night away. Feeling less like two love birds in lock cages. I felt us being complete holding each other. At midnight, she told me all her flaws, and asked me who would ever love her. “I will love you” I said to her. “You can’t make my heart feel something it won’t” pierced my heart harder than my illness. The rain came in time to help me laugh off my true feelings. Great, another chapter to add in the biography of heartbreak.

A few months ago. She was packing her bags without telling me anything. Moving more than just a couple miles away. Gazing into her eyes one last time. “If you can’t see yourself with me what there’s left to say”. Leaving each other in uncertainty about our time together. All I remember afterwards is waking up drenched in a back alley in my remorseful past.

A few weeks ago. I felt it for a moment. My heart stopped only to take another beating. Only to wake up to bad news I couldn’t shake. The echoes of “She’s dead” eventually became a reality to my own distraught. Her plane fell 20,000 feet from the air, along with the never ending rain. “We’re on our own now” was the last thing I said to her before she got buried. Maybe I’m just meant to be alone.

Now, I’m locked up in my dark room. I embraced the solitude of my crumbling heart. Wasn’t that way a few days before. “You told me you wanted to be the kind of person who lived with emotions, and desires written in his heart. What happened to that person?”. Those words of empathy didn’t encourage me. “You see the place outside these walls! It just filled with dreams, and friends that all have died! I can’t take this ANYMORE!”. Those were my last words to her before falling back into my cycles of empty bottles, and cigarettes. I’m not giving it up until it’s no longer real.

If I had to listen you, I wouldn’t be lingering on in my mind like the pouring rain that won’t stop. What’s the point of searching for reconciliation when I have less time than did three years ago left in my life. I see the crescent of death I haven’t dispose of on the floor. Pointing the crosshair fate on the side of my head long ago. I try to follow script, but not I’m sure what I’m about. Constantly drowning myself inerasable memory. Living like a love sick fool before remembering real bullets won’t be fired in a fake. Time comes in. Rolls on out. You’re all I can think about. Why can’t I forget about all the time we spend together. Continuing to lose sleep in the mess I made.

“What you would do if you could see me right here from the start? I’ve watched you shape your life away. Always prepared to pass the blame. I’m gone, and missing you so much. Don’t lose all the years of love you spend with everyone. I’m sorry I can’t stay as long as you want me too”.

Feeling her cold touch I woke up crying all alone. Reminded of my friends who are far apart. Without the rain, I could see them above shining a light in my darkness. At least, that’s what I tell myself. I got up, open the closed curtain, finding the rain still pouring washing, and covering the path I didn’t lay. There’s nowhere to run from it. I’ll let it collect me instead of waiting for good things to come. Without any bills, I finally sleep without emptying a bottle, or a packet cigarettes in forever.

“Time, and life only goes one way! Everybody is going to die. So come on, don’t waste your time. It’s going to get better. Just don’t look back.” I remember her saying amending my broken spirits once.

And then I finally found the morning I’ve been searching for. No clear skies, but endless amount of rain as usual. I always felt the rain picking on me. Pouring to strain my body because I have no way to escape my fate. Being stuck in its cold for so long in my own darkness. I wonder if it knows to stop. If not, I’ll grab umbrella. I won’t lose myself in the rain. I guess all I’m trying to say is……. it’s time to move on. And face the warmth after the rain. Pouring down on me a new light.


 

That concludes my story. I guess the hardest part was doing a story that made sense out of random events. Offline I sometime helped a friend write music lyrics for his band, and it’s basically a lot of back, and forth. Mostly tossing away papers, and mutually agreeing we both just like wasting each time by not agreeing on anything. So I took that approach, while listening to one of my favorite bands I The Migthy, and if you’re a fan of them too you’ll notice plenty of references to their album Connector. Structurally I think it’s a bit a clunky, but if I spend more time on it I’ll go over the time limit.

I did have another story that I didn’t finish drafting out. Basically it would have been a singer, singing a message to the world to open their eyes, and fight back against their imperfect world they live in. Obviously, that’s daunting to get across in a limit of 1000 words so I went with something just as hard. What can I say, I guess I’m a bit too ambition when creating my own stories.

Oh right, which three am I going to pick on? I mean, gift them this wonderful tag…hmmmmm…….

Alex’s Anime Arena – Consider this your late welcome back present from me truly! Listen to Hands on Houses for hours if you have to for a spark of inspiration!

#moe404 – I saw you back on Twitter, so consider this a welcome back present as part of your comeback wordpress world tour! So, I went into another dimension, told the me of that dimension to specially tag Rodrovich properly. Good luck to you, and if you already got tagged. Well, double you’ve been double/triple/whatever tagged!

Sakura Galleria – I know your kinda new, so what better way to make you one of us than by picking on you. Here’s your tagging present.

If any of you already been tag no worries. We double/triple/quadruple/whatever team you on purpose.

Ain’t I just generous handing out these tags. I’m starting to feel like Satan Claus. I should take a break from being nice, and go back to my evil ways of eating endangered Pandas. If I run out of Panadas to eat, I can always mix a black bear with a polar bear to make a Panda. Yeah, I’m sure that’s how it works. If any of you got any spare Pandas, tell me so I shall eat them!

Hm, anything else? Oh yeah, be creative, share your thoughts, and lights out!

Some Thoughts On: Hinamatsuri (2018)

Here’s an anime I didn’t intend to watch, but I did read a blog post by Karandi who did poll on her blog. A post I forgot to like earlier since I was on my phone, and typically not logged in XD. Moving on, on that post she shared the results of a poll asking her readers to vote on the best anime in the Spring season. In that poll, Hinamatsuri won the vote for best Spring anime, and that brought it to my attention. Not being one to solely be persuaded by public opinion alone I went on Discord to check if anyone I knew has seen it. Luckily for me, someone by the username of Robtaku has seen it, and he enjoyed it. How credible was his input to me you might ask? Well to straw man my point, he likes Hand Shakers (2017), and I don’t so there’s that. I started Hinamatsuri around the time I finished Devils Line, and that anime just sucked the soul out of me. I was in need of a comedy, even a bad one to lift my mood after feeling drained by that. Much to my surprise I did not end up disliking this anime. A  pleasant surprise that I found something I agree with the general census on.

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This whole scene is comedy gold

Hinamatsuri starts in a odd place with the first episode providing a glimpse three years into the future. On one hand the opening minutes of episode 1 will get viewers attention with a nicely animated action sequence, and keep them watching. On the other hand, it’s also a misleading draw since the anime only dedicates half of an episode to that event, and it the rest of the series is nothing like that. Trying to give Hinamatsuri a synopsis would be pretty pointless, but I’m doing it either way. Initially you think it will be about a Yakuza by the name Yoshifumi taking care of a stoic blue hair girl with telekinetic powers named Hina, but eventually jumps around characters a lot becoming more of a slice of life comedy. In your average anime series I would likely complain about the lack of an overarching story, but here I’ll give it a free past. Unlike the common slice of life anime I see, Hinamatsuri actually knows how to handle drama.

This is strange for me to compliment since I’m used to complaining about how poorly handle comedy, and drama is handled in a anime series. Something like March Comes In Like A Lion I complained about how the tonal shifts are jarring being very serious one moment, and the next being overly silly. Hinamatsuri on the other hand has a simple fix to this through Anzu. A character who carries the most dramatic weight in the series. Struggling with living on her own being stuck in the past she sees how harsh living the homeless life can be at her young age in Japan. By dedicating an entire character to explore this drama it prevents the anime from creating constant tonal shifts. So whenever it wants comedy it’ll focus on Yoshifumi taking care of Hina, and if it wants drama it’ll shifts to Anzu. By doing this, the audience will know what to expect until that arc eventually gets finished. My only complain to how the drama is done is the anime wants you to be in tears, but given how well it’s done if someone actually cries during Anzu portion of the anime I won’t be scratching my head like I would with other animes doing the same thing.

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This happens all the time when I drink

On the comedy side Hinamatsuri offers a host of hilarious supporting characters. All of whom overreact, or underreact to a strange event. The character who best excels at this is Mishima, a middle schooler who gets pulled into being a bartender. This puts her in a number of odd situation where she constantly interacts with stupid adults. One of them being her teacher who denies believing Mishima is his student because of her abilities to make a good drink. It’s about as silly as it sound, but works better in context. I ain’t going to do a breakdown of the comedy since it offers a lot of good jokes, but I will add aside from being funny it uses comedy to touch on some serious issues quite nicely. I personally just see Hinamatsuri as just a good anime comedy, but there is a solid foundation for the average viewer to probably take more away from it than I did.

The production is apparently handled by Studio feel. which I find shocking because the only other anime I’ve seen from them is Dagashi Kashi season 1 which I disliked a lot. It felt so pointless, and none of the characters learned anything. So it’s further shocking for me to accept they made this because I laughed, thought the drama was well handle, and I felt satisfied with how it turned out. On the animation side it was good, even if there’s no flashy action. Everything is nicely detailed, and it’s very colorful as well. What the animation did greatly was capturing the character exaggerated expressions. Studio feel. spared  no expense on that front, and especially the lighting which allows some proper shading. Also, it’s pretty good doing visual analogy for a good laugh. In particular, I like the visual where the words of Hina word kept changing in episodes. Good on you studio feel.

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And good on them for giving us this horrific reaction XD

One minor thing I did appreciate is depending on what episode you were watching the opening, and ending credits will change. For instance, after episode 7, Utako (a bartender) doesn’t appear next to Yoshifumi in the end of the opening credits. It’s something I appreciated, even if it doesn’t affect anything at all. In terms of sound nothing about it stood out to me, especially the ending, and opening theme which I didn’t care for that much. I saw this with the English dub, and it was pretty good. All the voice actor had good chemistry with each other, and nice comedic timing.

If anyone in the English cast deserves my highest praise, performance wise that is, it would be Anzu voiced by Amanda Lee! What! When I discovered this my head exploded because I’ve been listening to her covers of anime music for years (side note: I also like her original stuff a lot), and not once did it register to me that it could possibly be her. So, yes, because of this she obviously deserves my highest praise. She nicely portrays Anzu in all her charm, and sorrow. Doing exceptionally well in the dramatic sequences, and her outstanding moment is easily episode delivering a very emotional performance. This anime full is packed with pleasant surprises. With that, I should I conclude this before I accidently spoil anything while gushing about it.

If I were to rate Hinamatsuri I would give it an 8 out 10 easily. It was a lots fun, and knew how to handle drama well. Go watch it if you haven’t, especially you finished Devils Line, and feel drained by it like I did.

Some Thoughts On: Devils Line (2018)

I’ve been telling myself where I should begin with Devils Line because no matter where I start I reach the same conclusion. I cannot think of a single thing in Devils Line I could give some kind of praise towards. Just about everything in Devils Line is either not to my liking, or mediocre to the point of being forgettable. Making a collection of scattershot thoughts even harder to make into a coherent post.

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Would you believe me if I told you the girl on the right isn’t a vampire? Of course you wouldn’t.

I guess the first episode is a good place to start. It did itself no favors, and left me with a negative impression. The animation, the writing, the sound design, just about everything about it felt sub par, or worse. It also committed the grave sin of doing exactly what I expected of it. If something falls into my expectation in terms of writing I’ll accept it so long the execution is good, but that didn’t happen here either. So trying to figure out what exactly Devils Line is about simple, and dumbfounded at the same time. Being a romance story about the human Tsukasa, and the half human, half vampire, half edgelord Anzai trying to make their relationship work in the backdrop of Japan to tackle social issues with vampires potentially playing a larger role in society…I mean devils. 

Before I continue I have to stress it got on my nerve that within Devils Line that the terminology for vampires is changed to devils. Something I would accept if within the first two episodes they didn’t refer to devils as vampires. If there’s already an existing word to describe these vampires that gets straight to the point why not just stick to calling them vampires. I don’t know, maybe the mangaka was too lazy to write out vampire so he instead called them devils to save time. That’s something I want to know, but likely going to be left hanging like with everything else in this anime.

Continuing on, in the first episode Tsukasa gets the shocking revelation that a good friend of her, Shouta Akimura, turned to be a vampire who murdered three women. You want to know how Akimura got caught? It’s because his semen was left on each of the dead women bodies which apparently was a match with Akimura DNA. I would come up with a joke for that, but my creative juices are dry right now.

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♪Am I not edgy enough?♪ ♪Is my heart still beating?♪

Akimura is quickly forgotten about two episodes into the season. Tsukasa quickly gets over him so the first episode setting up Tsukasa, and Shouta Akimura being good friends felt pointless. One way the writing could have worked around this pointless character is mentioning Tsukasa incident with Akimura being the motivator for why Tsukasa wants to help Anzai to control his blood lust later on in the season. I would have found that more believable than what anime went with.

Another way I would have fixed this is simply have Tsukasa get attacked by a random vampire so the meeting with Anzai would still happen. Making the writing less eye rolling, and not drawing attention that Tsukasa was quick to forget someone close to her so easily. If the anime didn’t have the pretense that Akimura was important I wouldn’t even have batted an eye at this. I knew this was going to happen in the first episode when our woe is me edgelord Anzai kisses Tsukasa by the end of episode one. When the credits finally rolled up I notice the ending song had an effect on me. It was attempting to put me to sleep, and it almost worked once. Just the first episode of Devils Line is enough to convince your average viewer to drop the series. I ain’t one of those viewers as I’m here today sharing my thoughts on it.

My issues with the story can be easily generalize; awkwardly written romance, an attempt to tackle social issues get push to the background, a messy story structure that goes for too much too quickly, and throwing in some other evil organization to give the appearance the story is more complex than it actually is. Another issue is setting plot points, and subplots that aren’t resolved in this season. So you’re left with dozens of unanswered questions, and unresolved storylines. Studio Platinum Vision couldn’t conceive of a way to take the manga, and find a way to work 12 episodes worth of material to adapt in a self contain manner. Believing it would get around to eventually resolving all its loose ends with a second season. Dozen of animes adapting ongoing manga know have done this. Two example that come to mind are Noragami to even My Hero Academia which I hate a lot. Both anime first seasons told a self contain story within their first season where a continuation is possible, but if not guaranteed than made sure to leave as little loose ends as possible.

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Why breaking into the apartment of the woman you like, and sniffing her hair while she’s sleeping isn’t creepy at all!

Giving details about the world like the many times characters mention a bill/law being pass approving sex between devils, and human. Exploring something like that would be interesting, but unfortunately it means exploring the topic of sex has to be done with a horny college girl who immediately fell in love with the first guy who kissed who she knew nothing about, and a edgelord devil who fell love with that same woman when he also knew nothing about her. Tsukasa in particular dreams about having some steaming hot sex in blood with Anzai the first day after they meet. She obviously has some carnal desires she needs to get pounded out of her. Getting me to think about the first two episodes having Tsukasa almost being rape/killed by the only other human males she talks too. Implying to the viewer that Tsukasa think all men she know for possibly years are all bad, but an edgelord who’ll sneak into her apartment, sniff her hair while she’s sleeping is okay to consider starting a relationship with. This gives me a headache thinking about it.

The only aspect I felt could have worked are Anzai parents. I forgive the fact that I find it laughable that Anzai in his current age only now thinks about how shocking his existence is being a mixture of half devil, and human. Anzai parents were characters I wanted to learn more about. Seeing Anzai father cuffed up behind a glass wall got my attention. I wanted to know how both of Anzai parents got to the situation they did, how they met, and why they aren’t raising their son together. Questions that intrigued which sadly didn’t get answered. Just like in episode one how I expected Anzai, and Tsukasa to have an romance I also sadly expected for Anzai parents to not be explored.

Another interesting idea that doesn’t get explored is the existence of devils becoming know to the public. I can only speculate what the anime was going for because it was seriously messy in this regard. First thing that comes to is devils simply seeing the sight of blood on television is enough to make them blood lust. Something I can’t phantom because A.) Does it mean even the sight of fake blood gets them excited, B.) Do non liquid representation of blood like drawings, or pixelated blood also cause their blood lust, C.) Does reading the description of blood turns on their blood lust, D.) Is there a requirement to how realistic, or fake looking the blood has to appear to start this blood lust………Z.) If there’s a devil emo, when he cuts himself, and sees his own blood does that also trigger the blood lust?

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Only one of dozen times Anzai want to devour Tsukasa.

Usually how it works with vampires is if they see blood, or smell it directly in front, or around them than it could trigger a carnal blood desire. However, in this story devil’s simply seeing blood regardless of how close, fuzzy the image is, or the lack of smell can also trigger them. Given the terminology was needlessly change to refer to these vampires as devils I ain’t doubting more about them were needlessly change by the mangaka.

Back on topic, seeing the how the society would react to devils, and see if they would try to integrate together in a public sense could have made up for everything else. However, you get the point. It’s hardly focus on. As soon as devil’s existence become public knowledge the story shifts focus to Anzai attempting to control his blood lust, and uncovering the members of a organization attempting to eradicate all devils. Both plotlines are left unresolved making me feel like it was a complete waste of time to even allude to any social issues since it just swept them under the rug. Maybe it wanted to be metaphorical, and proclaim the acceptance of different people, but everyone simply jumped to conclusion immediately disliking the devils. There is a good argument in favor of their existence since the public is shocked Devils existed at all, though if the anime isn’t going bother making a good argument for Devils I won’t either.

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Oh no, this scene!

Let’s get to easily the worst scene of the series for me. In episode 8, after Anzai, and Tsukasa try some blood lust control training. Basically meaning Anzai, and Tsukasa get as close as possible to performing sex. Seeing this scene was cringe worthy because the couple don’t have much chemistry with each other. Making the almost sex scene very awkward to watch, and painful to view because it comes off as a badly written sexual fantasy of whoever wrote this series. When the exercise is over Anzai goes outside the exercise room, and thinks about how he was turned on. He tells the audience how he got excited almost banging Tsukasa. How getting her wet made him very excited. Spelling it out to the viewer he wanted to move in her all the while he masturbates. Thankfully it is not explicit, but this is the easily one of the worst moment in any anime I’ve seen.

I will give the English dub of Devils Line one credit though, it’s only the second anime I’ve watched an anime that made me laugh at the mention of rape. It was during episode 4 when Nanako Tenjo, whose English voice is provided by Kira Vincent-Davis, yells about how a devil drank her dead mom blood. There’s brief pause before Kira Vincent-Davis continues shouting AS HE RAPED HER! Her delivery of that line had me laughing because Tenjo shouting about her mother being deceived, and see a devil suck her blood was already enough to get the point across on why she hates devils so much. So the inclusion of the “AS HE RAPED HER!” line felt so tacky. I don’t blame Kira Vincent-Davis shouting the line as seriously as she did, but the writing, and her delivery made me laugh unintentionally at rape. The things anime does to me sometimes.

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BLINK! JUST BLINK YOU FREAK OF NATURE!

I don’t know how, but I can’t believe I almost forgot to write about Miwako Toda. It wasn’t until I was drawing over a still of her that it slipped my mind to write about she would not blink. Firstly, what the fuck is wrong with her eyes! She looks like a crack addict who needs a dose right now. I thought her eyes were going to pop out at one point in the series. I have no clue how, she managed to look like the most terrifying thing in a about about vampires. Her face, and her eyes unwillingness to want to blink made me think the anime would reveal she’s a devil. That doesn’t happen as far the anime is concern. Her odd character design made fascinating to me. She looked other worldly. Oddly enough, she was the most sensible character in the anime. Questioning Tsukasa on her moving way to fast relationship. Out all of the characters, this freak of nature was one I didn’t mind. As you would guess, she’s not in the anime that much either! You know, Devils Line has a talent for making things disappear.

I wasn’t expecting much out of Devils Line after I finished the first episode, and when I got to the end it became a drag to watch. It had the occasional moments of doing something eye rolling that would make me laugh, but after a while the overly serious edgelord tone killed that fun. There was so much it wanted to do, and it all felt disconnected moving from one uninteresting plot point to the other. I didn’t even bother going into the animation especially the lighting in scenes either being too dark or too bright, and the poor sound design that made natural action like hearing footsteps be muffled. The last two episode just took whatever enthusiasm I had for watching anime, and crushed it. Unfortunately for it, I’m good anime at the moment so its effort went to vain. Almost forgot, the post credit sequence doesn’t fix anything at all because I don’t give a flying Van Damme about about Anzai, or Tsukasa as a couple.

Oh yeah the maybe rating thing I do at the end. If  I were to rate Devils Line I would give it a 1 out of 10. I can’t think anything of thing I liked in this anime, or felt was competently done. If you want a vampire anime, go watch Vampire Princess Miyu. It doesn’t matter if it’s the OVA, or anime series, both will provide you a much better experience than Devils Line.

 

Giving into “The Build A Harem Tag” peer pressure post

I’ve decided to do this on a whim. I hardly deviate from doing reviews, or giving general thoughts on series/OVA so this would be something quick, and fun for me to do. You gotta give in, and join in on the fun sometimes. I also found plenty of other bloggers post on building their harems. Have to admit, it was a good way to find to new bloggers to follow, and learn about what their harem choices. Alongside that, it’ll be a good short break from researching what book I should read next after I recently finished a novel called Pachinko by Min Jin Lee which I highly recommend if you enjoy a good family drama. So yeah, the rules I was too lazy to retype.

The ‘Build A Harem’ Tag Rules:

  1. Link back to the original post on Anime QandA so they can check out everyone’s picks!
  2. Use the ‘Build A Harem’ logo somewhere in the post.
  3. Make sure to mention the person who nominated you too!
  4. Pick 5 Anime Characters (any show & any gender) that would be in your ideal harem if you were the main character of a harem anime, explain a little bit as to why they are your picks (if you want).
  5. Make sure each character you pick falls into some of the following harem character types: Childhood friend, tom boy/girl, genki girl/boy, loli/shota, trap, tsundere, yandere, kuudere, dandere, etc. (If there’s a character you’ve picked that doesn’t specifically fall into one of these types or falls into multiple types that’s fine too!)
  6. Nominate 5 people to participate in this tag!

Okay, I can follow most of these rules. As for who nominated me, no one. He has good blog. I recommend it, especially his post on cross dimensional selfcest where he gets philosophical not only using the Bipolar Magnetic Reversal Theory, but the Theory of Relativity to explain its appeal. I also didn’t choose my harem picks by archetypes. I just simply chose who I wanted the most if I was the protagonist of a harem! The last rule I’m not sure I can oblige with. A lot of online friends that I know who do make content do it YouTube instead, and only one of them I know actually has a wordpress account. So I’ll just tag Miasama on here, and on Twitter whenever this goes up. So future me, don’t forget to tag on Twitter! I command thee!

My last pick is technically cheating since I skimmed through my completed anime list, and couldn’t think of another anime character I would like put in my Harem. I did consider Edward Aleric since I could simply seduce him to transmutate himself in my liking. It would work, temporarily XD

Last thing before I post this so the man himself Bobsamurai, and his Discord server could mock me in a secretive, cult like meeting. I put the picks in alphabetical order. It’s easier to organize them like that. As sang in a One Ok Rock song, lets do this Taka! (and I don’t know anyone name Taka)

Ai Enma – Hell Girl Seriestumblr_oip0vivswk1vzeppko1_500Starting off this list is Hell Girl herself. This one, I’m not sure honestly what I see in her. Could be the mysterious aura that surrounds, her stoici expression as she judges anyone who crosses path with her, or it could just simply be her red eyes she’ll stare right straight into your soul whenever speaking with her. I don’t know about you, but Ai Enma comes across as someone who I can have a deep discussion on humanity, and how evil it can be at times. Cause you know, I like casually deep philosophical discussion on the nature of man. No matter how terrible a date with her can end up, or how badly I mess up on anything I can rest assured knowing she has seen far worse in her than me. In her eyes, that’s a Hell of a lot better than Hell.

Artoria Pendragon (Saber) – Fate FranchisegiphyThe first animated character in anything that made me think “Hey, that’s a good looking animated character”. So aside from her beauty which honestly I considered unmatch any other anime character I’ve seen. Her strength, her courteousness (that’s a word right?), chivalrous, and a kind soul underneath her rough exterior. These traits is what always kept her in my mind, and made her unforgettable. Now out of the dozen, or so Fate series which one do I like the most? Obviously the Fate/Zero version wins it out for me. It what made me like Saber a lot more than I actually thought I would.

Ayaka Kisaragi – Phantom Quest Corp

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I guarantee you this is the last character whose name starts with the letter A in this harem. One aspect that makes Ayaka Kisaragi appealing to me is obviously her character design. She’s a nice looking lady all around, especially her long red hair. She’s the kind of person who knows how to have fun drinking sake, singing karaoke, and fighting against vampires with her lipstick lightsaber. Despite being in debt by the end of every episode there’s a lot of charm to her, especially off duty antics which makes her my kind person I would like to take to a bar, and drink the night away. Also like her, I hate getting out of bed early, and have like a dozen or alarms to wake me up. Even when she wakes up out of bed looking like a mess, I still think she looks good.

Miyu Yamano – Vampire Princess Miyu0a025edcb3Yep, another stoic, supernatural lady get thrown into this mix. This time it’s a vampire with fire power! However, unlike Ai Enma who simply answers the call of those seeking vengeance. Miyu Yamano actively goes out into the world, and kill demons causing harm to human. What draws me to her is something even I’m unsure about. Could be the fact that despite her hardly showing much in the way of emotion she deeply cares about her friends, and the victims who are unfortunate enough to get killed by demons. It’s that kind empathy that she can still muster up after who knows how many decades of killing demons that I like about her. Always caring to help other in need in her own ways. Well, minus a couple exceptions of course she should have intervene sooner. Back to positives! She never takes her duty lightly, and strong beliefs she sticks with, but she also takes time to have fun whenever possible. Whenever she actually does smile, she’s pretty cute. She’s like much more mature version Ayaka Kisaragi with the added bonus of if Miyu ever does eventually call off the relationship. She has the ability to put me under a spell, and put in a dream state making me think we’ll together forever as she sucks my blood…and presumably something else if you catch my drift 😉

Kanna Endo – 20Th Century Boys4dd4094ad710cc2ced917901654ee00a164744ec_hq

So what makes Kanna stands out among the rest here? To be honest she’s actually the most normal pick out of my harem. By normal, I of course mean she has advance ESP, and is capable of predicting the future to a small extent, she can bend spoons with her mind, and even once strangled a woman without touching her. They don’t call her the Ice Queen for nothing. What obviously draws me to her compare to the rest of my picks is she’s easily the most down earth with her personality. Family is very important to her, she loves rock n roll music (high five Kanna), she likes to eat ramen, and is one fearless woman. You know a badass character when you see her actively going up against a terrorist group, and stopping a war between two large gangs for the greater good. Most importantly though, I have the best chances with her than anyone else I chose.

 

Well those were my picks, and I actually surprised myself with who I ended up putting into my harem. As for nominations. Huh, I’m not sure, but I’ll try to think of something.

1. Miasama of Grye Media; cool dude with cooler beard. I nominated thee by the power of Bob!

2 Gaurav of Random BlogI know you just started your blog, but like the famous saying goes; Pikachu! I choose you!

3.  Z

4.  Archernar of Just The Howling of The Wind

5. I don’t know, but if you’re reading this Miasama, tell J-Chip Show (•_•) , (•_•)>⌐■-■,  (⌐■_■) He’s Tagged!

So that’s all folks. You got to the end. A plus. You winner. What else do people say? Ni hao, and see ya later.