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Dec 9, 2012 2:19 PM
Anime Relations: Code Geass: Hangyaku no Lelouch, Code Geass: Hangyaku no Lelouch R2, Sekirei, Hetalia Axis Powers, Redline, Ichiban Ushiro no Daimaou, Karigurashi no Arrietty, Hetalia World Series, Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica, Persona 4 the Animation, Rinne no Lagrange, Rinne no Lagrange Season 2, Sakamichi no Apollon, Rinne no Lagrange Specials
So, that’s it for the bottom picks and now we will get into the good stuff or at least, the good stuff that I think deserve some praise and effort for either being something that explored more into the anime genre and/or not sucking hard. So let’s cut the small chat and get to the TOP 10.

SEKIREI / animation by SEVEN ARTS / distributed by FUNimation ENTERTAINMENT
I might get slapped for this but not just because of the rampant amount of fan service, considering I panned Kanokon and partially Cat Planet Cuties for this but that was for the fact the humor of those shows were either “meh but not world-class comedy” or in Kanokon’s case, painfully unfunny. Sekirei is a guilty pleasure for me, but while it has things that pleases me that you will never find out unless I want you to, this one has something that resembles a storyline, breasts, funny at sometimes, breasts, characters that doesn’t annoy you too much and at least when FUNimation advertise it, they just straight out know that you’re watching this for the fan service and also, breasts. Hell, it’s even mentioned in the sequel series Pure Engagement, which I would’ve finished but I’ll watch that later. So, yes, I do like fan service shows……when it doesn’t suck that much.

FINAL GRADE: 7/10 – HIGH Watchable

RINNE NO LAGRANGE (LAGRANGE: The Flower of Rinne) / animation by XEBEC & PRODUCTION I.G. / distributed by VIZ MEDIA (English dub coming soon to Neon Alley)
Yep, this is one of the newest anime shows I watched in 2012 and yes, I watched it in the original Japanese version and surprisingly this is a good show that I could re-watch over and over again, although personally I can’t wait for the dub version from Neon Alley/Viz Media (that and I need to learn about the voice actress Kira Buckland aka Rina-chan and her past work as a VA). While the show does sometimes forget that it’s a mecha show, it has a very decent storyline and it also makes up for the loving friendship and bond between the very likable characters of Madoka (different one, you fools!), Lan & Muginami and I know you know the yuri implied undertones of the relationship and yes, I do like yuri elements in anime or other media if it’s not crappy or just cause it’s there. But if you watched the show but I still find it sweet and touching and it’s also something from XEBEC that doesn’t make me pissed off at them for their earlier shows and the fact that Production I.G., their parent company saved their asses around this time.

FINAL GRADE: 7.5/10 – Watchable/ LOW Solid B

HETALIA / animation by STUDIO DEEN / distributed by FUNimation ENTERTAINMENT
Even if I like yuri, I have nothing against yaoi or anybody who is a yaoi fan girl……or boy. Yes, I think I’m one of the few guys that watched Hetalia and liked it. I didn’t loved it like the hordes of fan girls do or hated it like some people do for legit reasons but personally while some things about it bother me at some times, some things about it made me laugh like how America is portrayed as a douche who always has to be the hero but they’re full of it, or Germany, who is always hostile and always gets irritated by Italy too much (I know how he feels). Also, I think I’m the only person who finds Italy annoying and also insulting to someone……who was just born in Italy, let’s be honest, but still he just gets to me but I’m not really that offended by the series. I’ve seen more offensive stuff than this. I will say if you’re Canadian, you might hate this or just don’t care. Like I said, this is a rather good show if it fits in your criteria.

FINAL GRADE: 8/10 – Solid B.

So, surprise, I’ve seen a new Studio Ghibli release and it was…….alright. Yes, I’m in the large percentage that finds this film to be okay. I’m not harping it like it’s the greatest thing ever but it’s still entertaining to watch but there are a few flaws in the plot, characters and in the dub and by dub, I mean the Disney version. I’ve seen the UK version earlier this year and guess what? That dub was okay and personally I prefer that one over the Disney dub. Bridgit Mendler was a poor choice of consideration to play Arrietty as to me, it felt too unnatural and very unenthusiastic. There is no difference between the choices of Mark Strong (in the UK dub) and Will Arnett (in the US dub) as both sounds alike even though Arnett sounded like a stumbling drunk and at last, Strong plays someone who isn’t a damn villain. Amy Poehler was fine and she was overall the best thing about the Disney dub. Oh yeah, did I mention they played some stupid inane pop song at the last part of the credits because when I think of this movie, I think of this damn song, not that other song that fits within the tone of the movie. But, yes, Arrietty is an okay movie but I’m sure as hell isn’t going for the US dub again.

FINAL GRADE: 8/10 – Solid B.

DEMON KING DAIMAO / animation by ARTLAND / distributed by SENTAI FILMWORKS
Well, once reading Angel’s review of this series, I have decided to check it out for myself and the final result for that show is it’s really good. It wasn’t praiseworthy to me as it was to her but there were some moments that really got on my nerves like the usual “boy sees girl naked accidentally through some awkward occurrence, then girl runs to beat the shit out of him” shtick. There is a very cohesive plot moving on with some these widespread battles, magical elements that are like Harry Potter…..with lots of multi-colored haired anime girls and acceptable fan service that’s not just for…..showing that it had fan service.

FINAL GRADE: 8.5/10 – HIGH Solid B.

I would first call this movie “Animation Porn”. Why? Because when you hear that this movie took over 10 years to animate and/or develop and you see the final product and it looks so amazing and gorgeous in High Definition that alone is worth checking this out…..well, almost. There are also the steadily detailed race sequences and the character designs of the movie and that’s it. The voice acting is fine but not that worthy of a mention. Now rating an anime just based on the animation wasn’t exactly professional but then again, I’m not really that much of a professional but the story is simple, characters aren’t that complex but aren’t simpletons and completely moronic. It’s kind of like how I look into movies like Tron: Legacy & The Man with the Iron Fists. The concept looks very fun and wonderfully detailed but there is bound to be a lot of flaws throughout but you will still enjoy it.

FINAL GRADE: 9/10 – First Class

Okay, I haven’t played the game or any previous effort of the game series that was released in the US by Atlus but when I went into a show based off something I never encountered in my life, who would have thought this series would end up to be that DAMN GOOD!!!! I absolutely love this series but yet, I haven’t finished it all and although I could finish it in sub but like I said in the previous times, I’m more of a dub person so I can wait for that version to be released in the next few months. The animation and character detail is so much like the game from a few clips and pics I saw online, the plot line does balance the seriousness and the humorous details without making it too inappropriate and best of all, this may be a Sentai Filmworks dub, but thankfully they wanted the original VA cast of the English version and the performances were decent but I quickly gotten sick of the bear puns from Teddy and the expressionless appearance of main character Yu Narukami does get too old to give a damn but once you see episode 8, you’ll find it hilarious and this is one anime worth checking out.

FINAL GRADE: 9.5/10 – HIGH First Class (so far)

People have compared this show to Death Note and some either love the series or hate it completely…..I’m more of the former and even though I haven’t seen Death Note (yet) and still don’t rank that show as high as many people does, I’ll still give it a chance. For Code Geass on the other hand, this was one of my favorite anime that twists their anime elements that isn’t too much of a drag and much like Eureka Seven, it lasts for 50 episodes and never gets too tiring. However, this could have easily would have been a HALL OF FAME but unfortunately, the second series has a few curb stomps like unnecessary character deaths just to kill them off because they have nothing else to develop (SPOILERS: Personally, I was pissed off and sad when they killed off Shirley) and the unexpected but really expected twist at the end of the series which seem so confusing and off-putting. Aside from that, I actually do recommend the show for newcomers but take a break between episodes to know what you are going into.

FINAL GRADE: 10/10 (For Season 1)/ 9.5/10 (For Season 2)

Now, I’m going to introduce you the anime that I highly recommended for all of you to experience. But I will say that this is just my opinion of both of these shows and how I feel about them.

Well, this anime does have a lot going for it especially with Shinichiro Watanabe, director of Cowboy Bebop & Samurai Champloo (two of my favorite anime ever) and Yoko Kanno (music composer of anime too much to list) collaborating again for something that’s unusual (in some parts) from his previous efforts; i.e., set in the 1960s in Japan and it’s technically a slice-of-life anime but in actuality, more of a realistic tone than most in that genre (like looking at real life through the lens of anime, as most people would say about this) and the dramatic tone of the show has a good amount of drama without being too melodramatic and overbearing that would create big problems out of petty bullshit. Everything about this show is perfect to my ears from beginning to end of the series. The characters are greatly developed as the story goes along, the art style is very good, coming from new anime studio MAPPA (along with Tezuka Productions in some episodes), which is run by former executive of MADHOUSE Masao Maruyama and there is a bit of that Madhouse influence in the animation and of course, the music…….Yes, it’s good and I will end this note on what the hell you reading this for? Find this show somewhere streaming or whatever and watch it. You won’t regret it.


Now, Kids on the Slope isn’t actually the only anime that is the top of my list and for this entry, this is an anime that has been dubbed for this year and the hype on the show has been widespread among with the anime community and some have loved it, others find it overrated and not worth it (they’re fools!!!!) but let’s just cut to the chase……

Now, like many others, I wasn’t really into a lot of magical girl anime, although I have watched Sailor Moon in my younger days but never caught my attention at full but after hearing so many reviews about PMMM and thankfully, it was released in the states, dubbed by Bang Zoom! Entertainment and distributed by Aniplex of America, who rarely make dubs and after that, the rest was history. It turned a mundane concept and completely went cerebral and deep as it goes, making it intriguing, suspenseful and tense; that also goes along with the character development and how becoming a magical girl isn’t all cute outfits, slaying monsters, and worrying about any unrelated thing that comes to mind. This is the kind of anime that absolutely deserves all the praise and sales, whether it was the original Japanese or the English dub and I will say it again, this was a well put-together dub and I give my praise to voice actresses Christine Marie Cabanos, Cristina Vee, and Cassandra Lee for their performances as well as the other cast members, especially Vee for her portrayal of Homura Akemi, who really step it up at the latter half of the series as she brought out her emotions exactly right but not too much of being over the top as most people complain about. People have called this a New Wave anime, or nouveau anime as you will, something that completely changes every and any perspective of anime out there and sure enough, this series has done that and yeah, like I also said before about Kids on the Slope, watch this anime right now and see the brilliance of Puella Magi Madoka Magica…..or Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica…….or just Madoka Magica. Yeah, just watch the damn show.


So, that is the anime that I watched this year that I either liked or loathed……Well, this has a good year for me doing this for a full year, meeting and talking to interesting people around Spill, Planet Tyro, the many various Skype chats and everywhere on the internet.
Posted by HybridMedia | Dec 9, 2012 2:19 PM | 1 comments