4 of 4 episodes seen
Overrated. Definitely overrated.
****Spoilers may be found from here on****
Story (5/10): Michi Random picks up directly from where the main series left off and yet again we find the plot centred on Iori. This time, emotional transmissions galore.
Seriously, guys, why don't we just call it "Iori Connect" already?
To sum it up, Iori gets depressed (AGAIN) because she doesn't know who her "real 'me'" is.
Cue 4 episodes of conversations that go like this:
Random CRC Member (Aoki/Yui/Inaba/Taichi): "Dude, you're not acting like your normal self."
Iori:"That's because you don't know the real 'me'!"
So instead of any steps to solve the problem, we get an endless cycle of melodramatic shit we've all heard before. Then RINSE...aaaand REPEAT.
But WAIT it gets even better in the last episode. Somehow, without thinking, Inaba picks a 1v3 fight with some wanna-be-punk douchebags and obviously gets kidnapped. Girl, WTF did you expect when rushing in like that? You're not Yui...
Cue Inaba getting obviously saved by a ragtag group of CRC members. Really, could things have gotten any more predictable?
Throw in some shallow garbage dialogue about the importance of friends and an unconvincing rehabilitation for Setouchi-san, and you get a package of a plot that promises little and delivers even less.
Yep, the story is without a doubt ATROCIOUSLY average.
Art (5/10): Character art, like the main series, didn't strike me as particularly original or memorable. Taichi still reminds me of Tsuda-kun from Seitokai Yakuindomo albeit with brown hair, and everyone has had the KyoAni moe treatment ramped up on them to a whole new BLAND level. Nothing interesting here.
Sound (6/10): Probably the "best" part of the series, considering the OP and ED didn't kill my ears. "I scream Chocolatl" is a decent listen, but the OST really didn't do much to immerse me to feel sympathy for Iori's plight.
Character (4/10): As I said before, you can slap the label "Iori Connect" on this anime already.
Iori is easily the most developed character in the whole series, and that's because she gets SCREENTIME. Everyone else except maybe Inaba remains a one-dimensional personality. Maybe that's why they can't understand a more complex character like Iori and can only ask her to be normal, rather than asking who she WANTS to be.
To summarise the amount of character development in Michi Random for the CRC members in descending order, we have:
Iori (by a long, @#$%ing way)-->Inaba-->BLAND-->BLAND-->BLAND
It's ironic how much screentime in Kokoro Connect+Michi Random is dedicated to love confessions rather than useful plot devices to actually immerse viewers in the world of the characters and not make them seem so insubstantial. Could it really have hurt the creators to place some more flashbacks on the childhoods for each of the CRC members (yes, even for Iori seeing as this is Michi Random). Everything in Kokoro Connect is just "we tell the viewer this happened to this and this character, and they'll believe us without us showing them..."
Disappointing. It also really does reflect on the laziness of the production staff that the romance aspect ends on a particularly superficial note. But then again, to satisfy the unthinking viewer masses and provide closure Taichi must pick one girl over the another to go out with. Hopefully, there won't be a 2nd season.
Enjoyment (5/10): You'd think that a slice-of-life anime would have ample amounts of humour to balance the slower-paced plot and lack of action. But yet again in Michi Random, the comedy is uncreative and falls flat.
It was particularly insensitive that Taichi tried to cover for Iori by saying he went too far with her in a physical romance. Haha, very funny. But would Taichi really have said this, knowing that Yui had nearly been raped in the past and being the "selfless freak" he is? Definitely insensitive and uncaring.
Yet this was only one of the many contradictions in character in Michi Random.
(I'm not even going to start talking about how Inaba is supposedly good at analysing & manipulating people and situations....mindlessly starting a 1v3 fight? You've got to be kidding me).
Overall (5/10): TL;DR Michi Random and the main series of Kokoro Connect simply doesn't live up to its hype. This anime takes itself too seriously in depicting high-school relationships but does nothing to deliver. Made by lazy creators, it can only be described as disappointing and BLAND. Go look elsewhere for your daily dose of cute girls and guys doing not-so-cute things, and steer clear of this anime. Who knows, you may be rewarded for your wisdom with a more interesting series. read more
24 of 24 episodes seen
So less than 24 hours after finishing Steins;Gate I feel obliged to write a review for it (and no I didn't do any time leaps or send any D-Mails to give myself more thinking time).
Before I begin, I'll be honest with you. I tried as much as I could to find something wrong with this anime while reviewing it. Why? Because a disturbing trend has emerged where new, decent-but-not-superb shows in recent seasons are ranking easily into MAL's top 30 (and Steins;Gate appeared to be one of them). And personally I don't think that's a good thing.
Anyway...prejudices aside, Steins;Gate did prove me wrong. To an extent. Nevertheless, I would like to firmly disagree with the countless Steins;Gate fanboys out there that this is MAL top 3 material, because I would not classify this as a masterpiece.
Story (8/10) - In a nutshell, Okabe and his friends/amateur-like lab members build a somewhat unconvincing case of a time leap machine and are getting chased by SERN.Between most of the 24 episodes, the plot seems reasonably well connected, as we progress between different world lines, where things change little by little until one of Okabe's closest friends, Mayuri, ends up being fated to die. But while this sad fate provides numerous tearjerking moments for fans as we see Mayuri getting killed over and over again, it does become very repetitive.
However, that isn't my main issue with the plot of Steins;Gate. The main problem is that some loose ends weren't tied up properly. Especially that of SERN's involvement and the role of Mr Braun. Perhaps the weakest part of the story over the whole 24 episodes was Mr Braun's involvement with the Rounders. If he knew about Okabe's time machine for so long, why didn't he act immediately as a Rounder instead of sending "threatening" images to Okabe's phone. Why did he give the lab members the message from Suzuha Hashida at all? His role doesn't make sense at all.
And this leads to an even broader problem: is it really that convincing for SERN (the unseen antagonists) to only use Braun's team to stop Okabe? Assuming that they were the ones who stopped the trains in preparation for the attack on the lab, I was expecting them to pull a greater show of force in later episodes. Which didn't happen.
Episodes 23 & 24 are also too contrived for an anime that covered deeper themes for the first 22 episodes. If Steins;Gate had ended with Episode 22, Makise would have performed the ultimate sacrifice for the whole world, and I wouldn't have been disappointed. But the fact that Amane comes back just so that Okabe's selfish desires to keep everyone alive was fulfilled just didn't make it as enjoyable for me. No offence guys, but it reeked of typical shounen after that.
Art (8/10) - There's not too much to talk about here. Against other anime aired in 2011, the graphics are pretty stock-standard (obviously much easier on the eyes than something from the '90s). Okabe's reactions to his time leap moments were particularly memorable, as they did suggest some feeling of disorientation. Character art was ordinary (though thankfully no unrealistic body proportions....I'm looking at you HotD), but I still don't feel that the appearances of Mayuri, Ruka and Feyris blended in correctly with the underlying themes that Steins;Gate was trying to convey. The blood in Makise's stab scene didn't look particularly realistic/gruesome so I didn't relate to Okabe's worsening of his own injury in the last episode.
Sound (8/10) - Yes, there were times when the sound did enhance the element of suspense, and this was most evident when Okabe received those .jpgs on his phone. But considering I watched Kara no Kyoukai 5: Mujun Rasen recently, I can't say that SG's sound was nearly as impressive. The OP by Kanako Itou and ED by Yui Sakakibara are at best a decent fit for Steins;Gate...I wouldn't consider them outstanding.
Character (9/10) - Okabe's character development is by far the most interesting in Steins;Gate. From something of a clown in the early episodes, he does engage in personal growth, especially when he had to ensure that all the D-Mails were undone one by one. He joked less about the Organisation during episodes 15-20 and ironically became more distant to Mayuri even though he was endlessly trying to save her. His multidimensional character was quite well done, if we remember that shounen protagonists usually tend to be blatant idiots who remain blatant idiots (ie Natsu from Fairy Tail) or are pitiful weaklings who remain pitiful weaklings (Shinji from NGE and almost every damn male protagonist I've come across in shounen romance manga).
Other characters' development, however, were abandoned as a result. Mayuri pretty much stayed innocent yet internally mournful of her grandma's death etc etc, while Amane, Ruka, Moeka and Feyris didn't get enough quality screentime to ensure they became anything more than one-dimensional characters.
The biggest issue I have though is with Makise Kurisu's character. Believe what you want to believe Kurisu-chan fanboys, but she isn't really a tsundere. I don't find her attempts to act cold and hostile to anything near natural, as for 90% of the time she is majorly provoked by Okabe's insults. I'm sure that if you replaced her with any other sensible, intelligent female character from another anime, they too would have acted the same way towards Okabe after taking only so much of his Hououin Kyouma crap. Hence, she's not a tsundere (please search Rie Kugimiya's roles, the names Senjougahara and Asuka Langley Soryu for more information). I also truly think that her gradually developing 'romance' with Okabe is a bit forced, and that it would have suited the plot more if they had remained as friends rather than sharing that kiss (plus that chance meeting in Akibahara was so cliched).
Enjoyment (9/10) - It was good while it lasted. I don't see why else I would watch 21 episodes of Steins;Gate in one day. But then again, that's just me. It wasn't until I started thinking about what actually happened that cracks started to appear.
Overall (9/10) - Like I said before, SG isn't a masterpiece. But I wouldn't have given it such a high score already if I wasn't impressed by what it did and tried to do as an anime from 2011. The time travel theme hasn't been covered so much in anime that it's been done to death like the lousy-ordinary-kid-becoming-the-best-in-the-world-at- storyline.
So while it certainly isn't in the top 3 anime of all time by my standards (maybe not even in the top 10), I can safely say that it ranked in the top 3 of the season in which it aired. Only time will tell as to whether this becomes a well-acknowledged sci-fi classic like Cowboy Bebop or GitS, but until then (probably 3-5 years down the track) it's too early to decide.
For the furious Steins;Gate-is-God fanboys who are already raging at me from their keyboards, I will say that on a more exact scale this anime would fall between 8.5-8.8 out of 10, and that if this was the first anime I ever watched, I would most certainly have given it a 10 (like I did with Code Geass which btw is superior to SG). read more
159 of 271 chapters read
Dump all that stuff into a bin and send it straight to hell.
Welcome to Kami nomi zo Shiru Sekai (aka The World God Only Knows).
It's a whole new different ball game.
It's also the most awesome & hilarious harem/romance manga (+anime) EVER.
Story (10/10): Two words: incredible genius.
Throw in a guy who hates girls (but loves game ones).
Throw in several dozen girls who hate this guy (but will eventually love him).
Throw in DEMON girls who like this guy.
Throw in GODDESSES and a hell/heaven/earth-changing conspiracy.
There you have it. A nice platform for all kinds of comedy, parody and mind-blowing fun. The mangaka is incredibly skilled at alternating between humour and serious plot; something that is quite rare nowadays. If you've only watched the anime, you've only seen the surface...
Art (9/10): To put it out there, I'm not much of a fan of chibi character designs. But here, WOW...just WOW. Just the right dose and the effects can be AMAZING. Not to mention the mangaka does some experimenting with 4-koma, which is pretty good.
I've heard people remark that the girls could've been more well drawn. To an extent, I agree.
I would seriously have given this section a 10 if at least one of the girls was drawn like Tsukasa or Aya in Ichigo 100%. But I guess you can't have everything.
However, the art really does complement the girls' personalities and realism is always a big plus and a rare find.
Character (10/10): Hehe. Where's the option for 11 and 12/10?
Meet Keima Katsuragi. The world's BIGGEST nerd, geek and jerk all rolled into one. Now you must be asking, is this reviewer crazy? How does someone like him get ALL the girls?
You're forgetting one important fact: that nerds can be geniuses.
And this Katsuragi-san (aka Kami-ni-sama) is exactly what he claims to be: GOD.
He takes the Lelouch-type character to a WHOLE NEW level. Nothing is lost here.
A gaming rebel who scores 100s in tests? Check.
One of the few people in the world who couldn't give more of a damn about heaven and hell? Check.
A misogynist who scores with chicks EVERY SINGLE time? Check.
A guy who can be a THREE-timer, FOUR-timer or even a FIVE-timer with girls? Check.
You have to see it to believe it, my friend.
Enjoyment (10/10): Do I even need to explain after all this?
You're given a parody of every single type of girl who has EVER EXISTED in dating sims and romance manga. From the tsundere to the imouto to the librarian girl to the fighting/samurai girl to the crossdresser to the TEACHER.
(Yeah, the teacher...what a player, huh?)
And then you're given a line-by-line parody of Lelouch Lamperouge.
Overall (10/10): A refreshing, unique take on the harem/romance genre. This work deserves its own CLASS in the hierarchy of anime and manga.
You simply must read it, folks.
Although it takes a while (like 3 or 4 volumes) to get into the main story, it's well worth the time. Just trust me on this.
PS If anyone asks, my favourite 'girl' is definitely 100% HAQUA!!!!
A hot demon girl like no other. read more
27 of 9001 episodes seen
Firstly, I admit that I watched Gurren Lagann a whole year ago, so my memory of it isn't 100% exact. However, I am constantly frustrated by how overhyped and overrated this anime is.
The plot is nothing but your average shounen anime 'feel-good' stuff. But oh wait Kamina the cool guy gets killed off early and then there's this OMG-monstrous 7 year timeskip to the 2nd part of the anime where everything becomes ridiculous...no correction LUDICROUS and FARCICAL. Taking on the whole universe...I mean seriously? Last time I checked 'epic' does not equal to 'enormous destruction that defies all logic, belief, etc etc'
If you're looking for action and plot, check something out that's at least more believable like Ao no Exorcist. Sorry guys, but TTGL really does not have a good story.
Nothing special here. Blatantly shounen art, big mecha, big spaceships...all done before. Yoko the 'hottie' who should look something more like this:
OP was ok, this is probably what made Shoko Nakagawa considerably more famous. But OST is nothing to be ooh-ing and ahhh-ing about. It doesn't add much substance to the anime's atmosphere except to emphasise its already BLATANT SHOUNEN-ness. Hmm I think I already mentioned that didn't I?
For an anime that currently ranks just behind Kenshin: Trust & Betrayal, it is a complete insult to think that TTGL has sound and background music that remotely even compares to that. [Again I'm amazed at you diehard TTGL fans]
Ahh, now if this isn't the worst part...
For an anime that seems to take its plot seriously unlike gag animes like Gintama and Hayate no Gotoku, it needs good character development (even if it screams "This is shounen!!" for the 1000th time).
And boy did we not get it.
Simon is intially presented as nothing more than a wimp who relies on Kamina. Reminds me personally of Ganta from Deadman Wonderland but I have to say Ganta is more annoying. Anyway, after the time skip a completely different, Kamina-clone-type, carefree Simon emerges...and we have no idea how the hell this character change came about.
Yoko becomes a teacher...WOW. I don't believe this. So a gun-toting (supposedly 'smoking hot') chick who likes older guys has a BIG change of heart and decides to suddenly settle down to help children. And still proves that she has the great body and fighting spirit when called up once again to 'protect the planet'. Geez, it couldn't get any worse could it?
But oh it does.
I hear a lot of fans liked Kamina when he was still around. But he isn't around anymore is he? Which leaves us wondering how Simon's personality did some kind of teleportation to a parallel plane and came back with enhanced features like increased assertiveness and the hey-look-Rossiu's-arresting-me-but-meh-I-don't-give-a-damn attitude without Kamina teaching him some of his cool ass-kicking tricks.
Enjoyment: I've ranted enough about this anime by now so yeah I gave this part a 6. I marathon'd this anime in like 3 weeknights hoping that it'd somehow get better after the spa episode but that dream never came about. And I'm generally a lenient 'rater', so this would easily deserve a 4 or 5 if I'd bothered to rewatch it (which I'm not going to do for at least another 2 full years).
Overall: 6/10. If you can stand not having your logic obliterated by something that's often mislabelled as 'epic' and 'awesome' when it is totally ludicrous, overdone, unoriginal and seriously lacking in top quality that a 10th-ranked anime really should have, then yeah give it a try. I'm not stopping you.
I guess there are really worse anime out there, but I really cbfed to tell you to avoid them. Use your own judgement pls.