40 of 40 chapters read
This is one of those stories that never ceases to amaze you, taking into context the situations that the protagonist seems to find himself in. I must stress though that some might not be able to fully appreciate this manga, some might not even get it - although, ironically I do, which speaks volumes about me I guess. It's nothing too deep, or hard to understand - it just takes a while for it to sink in. This is very character orientated, which is something that the reader needs to be conscious about when reading it. The art is very well done throughout, as well as the character development. You really start to feel for some of the characters and what they are coping with.
The one thing that bugs me about this manga is the ending - its too abrupt for my linking and slightly inconclusive. However, it's such a small flaw to point out. Its still an enjoyable manga to read.
26 of 26 episodes seen
The show comes with a variety of characters, including androids and "cyber-brained" people. So, unless it's watched from very early on, you can easily confuse between the two. I doubt that this is the sort of anime that you can start watching in later episodes. It's set, for the most part, in the future - mankind has harnessed the power of robotics (hence the afore mentioned androids and cyber-brained individuals). Here, there exists "The Metal or Metal Real" - something that you could consider the future of the internet. Where, individuals can immerse themselves in a world of fantasy, but even that comes with it's own dangers.
Real Drive is set in 2061 AD, but the anime starts out 50 years before this during the construction of an artificial island that will eventually be where the anime is focused on (you spend very little time in the past, but it's pretty much central to the anime). It also focuses a lot on the work of Masamichi Haru and Kushima Eiichirou, who are the central characters in this series. I have to admit that the series ended a little too abruptly for me - almost like everything was mashed together into the last 3 - 4 episodes. That said, it all works together quite well. However, it still left me wanting more. read more
26 of ? chapters read
As the title suggests the manga is about a teacher, or more specifically, a student-teacher relationship. This is an excellent example of a story which is not afraid to explore rather taboo subject matter. Rather than being too intense the story progresses at an easy pace that isn't too heavy for the reader to digest. If anything it's rather compelling. At it's current pace, it just makes you want to read more and more.
I'm not usually one to actually read teacher/student romance manga, because quite often they aren't done all that well and slightly on the unrealistic side, but this one's a rare gem that doesn't magnify the necessary melodrama that comes with such a relationship, and keeps things very sweet and real. read more
44 of ? chapters read
The artistic style is, in essence, beautiful. But I do find myself distracted by it. I always seem to be drawn more to the art, rather than the story itself. All manga art (or in this case manhwa) have some sort of flow to it - but in this case, it can get overpowering at times. Which is probably the answer to much of my confusion as the story progresses. Although, it's not enough to put me off from reading it. As the story seems to pull you in. It sounds somewhat strange, but completely true.
One thing that I would change about it is how random characters appear and are not properly introduced until further down the story. You're left wondering what exactly is their purpose in the whole tale until a few chapters later, everything becomes clear. But maybe that's just me being slightly nitpicky. It does tend to be slightly annoying, but not overly so as when the person is actually introduced, a lot of things start to make sense. It's almost like a mystery novel.
Don't go into this manga (or should I say manhwa) and expect another run of the mill love story, because by all accounts it isn't. What has been created here is a very unique story with a very unusual take on the others in this genre. Despite it's knack of confusion (which is easily remedied by a re-read of earlier chapters) the bride of the water god is a truly interesting read indeed. read more
17 of 100 chapters read
One thing that I can really say about Gunslinger Girl is that is has a pretty dark edge to it, especially when you take the actual content and the plot into consideration. It can quite easily give you very mixed emotions at times (sometimes getting a little too heavy). The fragmented, yet detailed, storyline is actually pretty unique as it often makes you re-read earlier chapters and even volumes, and it really makes you think about things. Especially things that are going on in the manga, and about life itself. This is especially true when you read about each individual girl's experiences. And due to the linear - yet not linear format, the series (I feel) has quite a high re-reading value.
Quite simply put, this is a bittersweet series, often exploring the darker side of human nature, as well as the girl's drive to rediscover what it means to be "human". Accompanied with very lovely artwork, Gunslinger Girl is definitely a must read in my humble opinion. read more
4 of 13 episodes seen
This anime is geared towards a more spiritual side of things, which gives it that refreshing feeling, and keeps things interesting. Artistically, this is wonderful. The art is almost mellow in places, and it reminds me a lot of Mushishi in style. The colours are lovely and clean, but appear almost soft in their appearance. It's also very nicely detailed. A real pleasure to watch.
The anime itself almost seems to be setting a nice, gentle pace for itself. Not being familiar with the manga in any way, I can only hope that it carries on for a few more episodes before delving deeper into the underlying plotline. This anime is almost addicting in it's nature. It's actually quite rare to see an anime where everything just seems to fit, well, perfectly. It's definitely fair to say that this is slowly turning into a real gem. All I can say is that Natsume Yuujinchou has a lot of potential. read more
14 of 23 chapters read
The only complaint that I have about Antique Bakery is the length of the manga, as it's only 4 volumes in length - it's have really liked if it had been a longer running manga. But at 23 chapters, it's not too bad. Artistically, the manga is, well, pretty nice to look at. Especially when considering that all the main characters are all men. That and all the cakes - even if they are illustrations. The art may be liner - but it's well detailed and very nicely composed. It's amazing to see how easily the character's expressions change from one panel to the next. It may be fair to say that the variation in styles between the characters is probably the manga's "saving grace". However, its also quite easy to see that this manga is especially aimed towards the female populous. You couldn't miss that fact, even if you tried. Despite all the humor that this manga contains, there are other, more serious issues at hand here too.
If josei (or shoujo) manga is something that you enjoy reading, then be sure to give Antique Bakery a try. Even if this is something new, I really think that other readers could actually enjoy it. It does, however, go into detail about homosexuality (nothing graphic) relates issues, as well as references to kidnapping. So, if you have something against homosexuality, then maybe Antique Bakery just isn't for you. read more
102 of 103 chapters read
Now, I know what you're thinking - 'this is just another high school romantic comedy manga'. You know the ones, boy meets girl, boy likes girl, boy declares undying love fir girl = happily ever after. And for the most part, that is exactly what Kare Kano (His and Her Circumstances - which is the English title) actually is. But there is more to this manga than just a simple love story. The more you read into it, the darker it becomes. While the anime had some of the darker infusions towards the end - the manga delves in deeper. Much deeper. This story contains love, betrayal, secrets, child abuse, self-harm (2 instances), teen pregnancy, and a lot more that really makes it worth reading. All the pain and confusion that a person can (or could) suffer when growing up is all there in the Kare Kano manga.
Like most manga, character development takes place over a period of time, and this is no exception. The more the story progresses, the more complex the character's personalities become. This is most apparent in Arima Soichiro's personality, and this generally starts to take place during the stage play (this is why it's a key occurrence). The art style changes slightly as the manga continues, but it keeps it's style well and is really fitting with the story content. The complexities between the relationships of some of the characters is also well constructed. Apart from the main relationship (Arima and Miyazawa), there are 3 other relationships that are happening - one being a step-brother/step-sister relationship, as well as a high school student dating an adult (however, this particular relationship receives much less attention in comparison to Arima and Tsubasa's respective relationships).
In essence, the reader could possibly relate to any number of issues that occur in the manga better than the anime (with it's slightly off-key ending and no closure whatsoever). This is one manga that I would actually encourage people to add to their collections. read more
3 of 3 chapters read
Each of the three stories are similar in the fact that the girls in each of the stories are, for the lack of a better word, troubled. This is really apparent in the second story (Cuckoo child). I'm not really all too sure what to actually make of the second story. The first story, where this "manga" gets its name from, is not as dark as Cuckoo's child. However, it does discuss issues such as suicide - which is never considered light reading material. What I find interesting about them is that these one shots are not afraid to discuss matters that are not readily discussed in other, more mainstream manga. In a way, they are similar to Fruits Basket and maybe even Koi Kaze in that respect. 60 days, the last of the three stories, is lighter in nature to the previous two. The good thing about the third story is, I think, that people can probably relate to the protagonist.
These one shots do tend to leave you wanting more, wanting to know what happened after. Which is slightly annoying, as being one shots (as are the majority of her work) - you know that they are, in essence, completed material. The artwork is classic Ashihara Hinako - instantly familiar if you are reading Sunadokei. And also, despite being one shots - they are incredibly worth reading. You won't regret delving into these little short stories. read more
1 of 1 episodes seen
Damn the lack of 9.5 ratings on these things! >__<
Toki wo kakeru shoujo (時をかける少女) is not what you would call your typical slice of life anime - there is nothing even remotely typical about this particular anime. Despite having sci-fi references, they are kept to a relative minimum - which took nothing away from the movie, in fact, it actually added to it. In itself, its an adaption from several other live action movies of the same name, as well as a manga/light novel, of which, the original protagonist is actually the aunt of the protagonist in this anime. However, that's where the connection between the two. I watched this movie without any prior reservations, or otherwise - and I have to wholeheartedly admit that I was very thoroughly impressed. However, this review is just my personal opinion - I'll leave it to you to appraise the movie yourselves.
Artistically speaking, the animation style is nothing short of fantastic - with the level of detail really bringing the movie into its own. The subtle mix of styles all adds to the richness that this movie offers. Accompanied with the wonderful soundtrack - both the sound and visual qualities bowled me over. However, I do have one little complaint about the soundtrack - many of the tracks tended to be different variations of the same tune... although, slightly repetitive, it's really nothing worth getting worked up about.
What really made the movie was how the characters tended to interact with each other, as well as the story line itself. It's littered with comedic moments - such as when Makoto (the protagonist of the movie) is knocked over by a flying student, as well as the numerous bumps to the head that she receives throughout the whole movie. This is the type of movie that tends to make you empathize with the main characters, and the trials that they face. In fact, you can quite easily argue that Makoto is one of the most likable teenage protagonists that anime has seen in recent years. Or at least, in my opinion. It's also interesting to see how the decisions and actions of one person, can have lasting repercussions on everyone around them. The ending was a really nice touch, and actually left it open for further continuations. However, that might actually take the "originality" away from this anime. read more