pluvia33's Blog

October 22nd, 2017
Over the last 2 weeks or so, I’ve continued to focus a lot on watching my anime! Not really much else to say about it, so, yeah, here’s the running list:



-Another
-Boku dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED)
-Bungou Stray Dogs
-Date A Live
-Death Parade

-Flip Flappers - Completed:
This was a peculiar series to say the least. It was an interesting take on the magical girl genre with some fun characters and cool, colorful animation. However, it was really held back by some very shaky plot structure. Some of the cuts between episodes were just really odd and sometime within the same episode things got really jumpy. Having watched the whole series, I kind of wonder if that was intentional. Although I ending up giving it an 8 score, I’m really interested in giving this one another watch to try and fully grasp what they were trying to do with this original anime production. Very interesting.

-Kaiba

-Kekkai Sensen (Blood Blockade Battlefront) - Completed:
Sadly, this was probably the biggest chore for me to watch for this challenge. I did not connect well with this series, it was usually very boring for me to watch, and every episode felt much longer than it actually was. I actually had to take a quick break for watching this about half way through to finish watching the second season of My Hero Academia, to watch something that was actually exciting and fun to watch. And that really is a shame. The series looks really nice, but the characters and plot didn’t connect. There were a few moments of joy in the series, but they were few and far between. I ended up giving this series a 6, but if it wasn’t for the high production values it would have easily been a 5. Oh well. Guess I don’t have to worry about watching the second season now.

-Love Live! School Idol Project
-New Game!

-No Game No Life - Completed:
This is a series that really spoke to me and is really relevant to where I am in my life right now. With me being more into tabletop gaming now than ever before, Sora and Shiro’s life in a world ruled by games was of a lot of interest to me. Also, the deep difference in their demeanor between when they are in the world of gaming vs. the mundane “real” world was really relatable to my own feelings comparing real life and my time spent at a game table or when I’m talking games with friends. And in a way, the extent at which I related to this story was a little surprising because I am not a very competitive gamer; I much prefer cooperative games and games with low levels of direct conflict. However, when I think about it, Sora and Shiro’s gaming doesn’t really seem all that competitive. Together, these two are pretty much the greatest gamers in the world. Their opponents aren’t really any competition. When it comes down to it, it really feels like it is Them vs. The Game. To me, it really feels like a cooperative quest on their end. They’re always taking their opponent apart like a puzzle and again, that really spoke to me on a personal level. Anyway, I really liked this show, its story, and pretty much all of the characters. Sadly, though, I could only give it a 9 and it currently sits at #66 on my working list. This happened largely because the series just didn’t have enough room to breathe and really develop. It should have been at LEAST a two-season long series, but it was just 12 episodes. By the end of the series, it reveals itself to have a bit of a cliché collection-quest element to it and it ends with them only 1/8 of the way finished. Now, I’m usually not one to mind too much about a non-conclusive/drop-off ending, but the way this season ended just made it feel empty. I really hope that the prequel movie does well and they are able to make more anime. If not, I suppose I’ll just have to get into reading the original light novels! Either way, I feel like if/when I get around to experiencing more of the story that the series as a whole will go up in my ranking. Still, some great stuff here so far!

-Potemayo
-ReLIFE

-Sakura Trick - Completed:
Ahhh, this was a fun, sweet little show. Such a feel-good show with cute little lesbians. Not really trying to sound creepy or anything, but man these girls are adorable! However, even though I really enjoyed this show, smiling constantly through almost every episode, there was something that felt like it was missing. While it clearly had heart and had some very touching moments, it didn’t quite hit the level of many moe, romantic comedy, and/or slice-of-life shows like Azumanga Daioh, Toradora!, or pretty much any Key adaptation. It also never really got totally laugh-out-loud funny like more gag-heavy slice-of-life shows like Minami-ke, Mitsudomoe, or (again) Azumanga Daioh. Finally, it also doesn’t really have anything that ever feels like real dramatic stakes like my current favorite yuri series Strawberry Panic. So, where does that leave Sakura Trick? It ends just where I thought it would at a very solid, enjoyable 8. It’s just a joy to watch, although a slightly empty joy; it’s a super-sweet junk food anime. I do consider it something that will be a solid must-buy for me, though. It may be an 8, but it’s something that I can see myself re-watching more often than some of my 9s or even a few 10s. It’s something that I can just put on, turn my brain off, and enjoy cute girls being cute and kissing the crap out of each other! ^_^

-Shigofumi
-Shingeki no Bahamut: Genesis (Rage of Bahamut: Genesis)
-Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. (My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU)

Bonus:
-Boku no Hero Academia 2nd Season (My Hero Academia) - Completed:
As I mentioned in my Blood Blockade Battlefront write-up, I finally finished up the second season of this series! I don’t really have that much to say about it. This season pretty much kept the series on the same level as the first season. I rated it another 10 and for now it’s sticking in the same relative position as before (currently #44). This season had some good character development including more of my favorite character Tsu-chan. Yay!
Posted by pluvia33 | Yesterday, 11:18 AM | 0 comments
October 11th, 2017
Anime Relations: Pingu in the City
This morning I should be watching more of the fun happy high school lesbian show Sakura Trick. But instead, I REALLY need to get some thoughts out of my head....

An anime called Pingu in the City has been popping up in my MAL Panel under the "Latest Anime Reviews" section, typically being scored a 10. Out of curiosity, I click on it and it turns out to be a total joke. This is one of those little kids' anime that have about 7 minute long episodes, a format that typically wouldn't even be able to hit an average score of 7, let alone be around a 9. Not only that, but at the time of writing this the anime is ranked at #17 on MAL's Top Anime list and there is screenshot evidence of it once being at #3!

So what the hell is going on? Really, I'm not entirely sure. I wasted WAY too much time looking around on the internet to try to figure that out, but I don't have a concrete answer. Most of what comes up are people who act like they genuinely think Pingu in the City is a masterpiece, but I can't really find a source for why that as of this writing 7031 votes have scored this anime as a 10 (84.8% of the scores given for the series). However, an older British-Swiss stop-motion version of the series does apparently have some history as an internet meme.

Looking at some of the forum posts seems to shed a little bit of light on how and why the MAL 10-score campaign has happened, though. Rating this a 10 has seemed to become a way for a lot of people to show how worthless the rankings on My Anime List are. By latching on to a series which has meme history, is from a typically very low-rated format (short-form kids' anime), and even a series with non-Japanese roots which causes some to question its validity as being "real anime" (though by MAL's definition, it most certainly is since this version was produced in Japan for a Japanese audience). Some particularly illuminating comments are included in the forum post titled Why such a low score?....

"The answer is that there's actually a small percentage of people who still place value on MAL ratings. As if a system where the average anime is rated a 7 and the spread of most scores is from high 4s to high 8s can be anything but a huge embarrassment as well as a laughing stock."

"So many wannabee elitists with sao and aot as their favorites and a mean score of 7. Their egos got boosted by rating pingu as one. Nothing we can do about it."

Now, this talk of a 7-average is something that has had me thinking for a while upon how I rate anime. You know what my mean score is currently sitting at for anime? 7.66! Yeah, that's pretty damn high. But I make no claims that I have very refined tastes when it comes to anime. In general, I just REALLY love anime of all types! The "average" score for me is a 7 because I feel that most anime is at least "good" by default and that it has to start screwing up or be really boring for me to get lower than that and since the 7 score is labeled as "Good" on MAL, that's how I treat it. And you know what, if it wasn't for the large amount of hentai that I watch and shamelessly log and rate on MAL, my mean score would probably even be higher than an 8!

So how can I maybe "fix" my ratings? And do I really even NEED to fix my ratings? Sure, I could probably re-evaluate every single anime that I've ever watched, ignore the labels that go along with the score and call a score of 5 the basic "Good" anime instead of a 7 for me. But that would be a LOT of work as I currently have 767 completed anime that I've scored. Something else that I could do is actually score everything that I've dropped or put on hold as I currently don't usually rate anything that I haven't finished watching. I could give nearly everything in this category a 5 since that's kind of my "bored to tears" kind of rating and that's why I usually drop or put things on hold. From there, I can rate things lower if I dropped something because it was particularly bad.

However, if I were to start rating things that I haven't actually finished, all that would mostly do is help make my mean score look less stupid-high. Once a series has finished airing, MAL only factors your score into the average if you have finished at least 1/5 of the entry. Many things that I drop or put on hold is only after one or two episodes or otherwise less than 1/5. As an example, if I rated Blood+ a 4 because it bored the crap out of me for the first 6 episodes causing me to drop it, that would not lower it's current average score of 7.78 in any way because 6 episodes is not 1/5 of the series' 50 episode runtime; I'd have to stick it out for 10 episodes instead for my score to matter.

In a way I understand why they decided to do this; they don't want low scores from just watching the first episode of a series to unfairly drag down a show's average score. But really, I think that's a big part of the problem with why people find little value in these average scores and rankings. Does a flash judgement on a series based entirely on the first episode really hold little or no value? Personally, I think there is value in this. Sure, it might suck for a series to be dragged down because it has a slow start, but you know what? That's kind of important! Making a good initial impression is something that a series really needs to have to capture an audience and if it doesn't have that then it has failed on some level; if it really is good when you stick with it, that will balance the average back out a bit. Also, if someone finds the first episode or two of a series to be utter crap, why would they watch more?! I think it is important to capture those feelings to get a true average score. This "needing to have watching a set percentage" thing also provides a boost to shows with high episode counts. Sure, some people if they're bored enough will sit through half of a 12 episode series or 1/4 of a 24 episode series, but most won't sit through 1/5 of a 50+ series (at least 10 episodes) if they are not enjoying it! Although I love Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood, it would likely drop a number of spots from its #1 rated throne if every score was counted.

Then of course there is something that I've mentioned a few times before: Franchise Bias. I also love the Monogatari Series, but if it wasn't for the fact that it is part of a long running series, Owarimonogatari 2nd Season would be nowhere near the Top 10 rated anime on MAL. There also wouldn't be 6 entries in the Gintama series higher than the original in the top 15 if it wasn't for this bias. Basically, the longer a franchise goes, the people who rate it are composed more and more of established fans. Why would you watch the sixth entry in the Monogatari or Gintama series if you didn't already like the series? Also about Gintama, the initial entry also gets a big boost from the "need to watch 1/5" thing as it's a 201 episode series (gotta watch at least 40 episodes for your score to count?!).

So with all this in mind, I think it'd be pretty easy for MAL to fix their ranking system a bit if they actually cared to do so. Again, I think it is important to calculate scores given by people who have only watched a few episodes of a series. Maybe you can give more weight to scores from people who have finished it, but I think it's still important to capture early droppers in the rankings in some way. Then I think their weighted scoring formula needs to be revamped. I don't really have time or energy to get into the math of it (and frankly some of the variables confuse me a bit), but this is their system:

Weighted Rank (WR) = (v / (v + m)) * S + (m / (v + m)) * C
S = Average score for the Anime (mean).
v = Number of votes for the Anime = (Number of people scoring the Anime).
m = Minimum votes/scores required to get a calculated score (currently 50 scores required).
C = The mean score across the entire Anime DB.


Ummm, okay. But just based on what people have been able to do with Pingu, this formula isn't really working all that well. Just take a look at the board game rankings on BoardGameGeek; the number of scores given to a game seem to hold a LOT more weight here and I think MAL could probably learn a thing or two from that.

But whatever. Again, is this even worth fixing? I don't know. It would be nice if the rankings on MAL were closer to a "true" marker of quality for people who care about that sort of thing, but that kind of stuff doesn't really matter that much to me. This website is more just for me to track what anime that I watch and share my opinion on it. I'll just go on, trying anime that seems interesting, dropping what doesn't hold me, and move along. If you want well calculated anime rating metadata from MAL, you are probably just looking in the wrong corner of the internet.
Posted by pluvia33 | Oct 11, 5:49 AM | 3 comments
October 10th, 2017
So it’s been about 6 and a half months since my last proper Anime Watching Challenge update. As I mentioned in my last few blog entries, I’d been slacking with my Challenge due largely to life things and focusing on my tabletop gaming hobby more, but I feel like I’m getting back on track now. After making the Excel spreadsheet mentioned in my last “Random Update” and realizing that I need to watch at least 3 episodes a day on average, I’ve been trying to do at least that, trying to at least watch an episode or two in the morning and again in the evening after work and watching a bunch when I have a free day on the weekends. I’m hoping this doesn’t start to feel like a chore, but it hasn’t so far and I have made significant traction: I’ve finished off everything on my challenge that’s longer than 13 episodes and currently have 206 episodes left to watch, bringing my current average “episodes per day” down to 2.71 right now. Good stuff! I feel like I can do this now without burning out. Here’s to the next 76 days! Now, on to the running list:



-Another
-Boku dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED)
-Bungou Stray Dogs
-Date A Live
-Death Parade
-Flip Flappers
-Kaiba
-Kekkai Sensen (Blood Blockade Battlefront)

-Kubikiri Cycle: Aoiro Savant to Zaregototsukai - Completed:
So I did start to enjoy this series a little more as it went along. The characters got a little more interesting and there were actually some cool twists to the murder mystery plot, too. However, in the end it didn’t quite break out to the point of making it on my Top 100 with a final rating of 8/10 from me (all of my Top 100 have ratings of 9 or 10). It was still a fun show and I might be interested to watch it again someday, but it doesn’t live up to other NISIOISIN adaptations that I’ve seen (mainly the Monogatari Series and Katanagatari). Oh well, they can’t all be winners. But if someone has a particular interest in murder mystery plots and likes a good amount of style, I’d definitely recommend giving this series a shot.

-Little Witch Academia - Completed: It’s kind of weird to have to give a comprehensive summery of my feelings on Little Witch Academia after previously talking about each episode in my previous updates, but oh well. I really ended up loving this series! While the first half had a very episodic nature with just a little bit of an overall plot, the second have had much more of a continuous storyline. There were a lot of great moments and bits of amazing animation. There were some characters that really could have used more development, but for what it was the series was still amazing. This has ended up with a 10 rating and climbed to #17 on my working Top 100 list, beating out Kaleido Star as my new favorite “totally suitable for all ages” anime. It was just a joy to watch.

-Love Live! School Idol Project
-New Game!
-No Game No Life
-Potemayo

-Re:Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu - Completed:
This is the most recent series that I watched from beginning to end and I have to say that I enjoyed Re:Zero quite a bit! When I watched this directly after Steins;Gate (see below) and looking at some of my other favorite anime (see Higurashi), I’ve come to realize that I’m a bit of a sucker for tragedy loops. Something about being trapped in a horrible situation over and over and the struggle to get out of it just really pulls on my heartstrings. Anyway, with Re:Zero I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. I remembered there being a LOT of buzz around this series, but there also ended up being a lot of backlash. Some people in particular seemed to hate the ending. Having this in the back of my mind had two effects: First, I think I went into it more critically than I would have otherwise, but the series still did a great job of pulling me in with enjoyable and interesting characters. Second, I had some low expectations for the ending. On the second point, I was actually kind of confused. For an anime based on a light novel series that hasn’t ended yet, I felt that it ended exceptionally well! Maybe there are just some ignorant anime fans out there who still don’t understand the nature of anime adaptation. But yeah, although there were a few rough spots, I still liked this series a lot, enough to give it my 10 score and placed it at #45 on my working list (right now, right below My Hero Academia). Good stuff!

-ReLIFE

-Sakura Trick - Watching:
I wasn’t sure if I was going to mention this series in this update since I’ve only just watched the first two episodes this morning and will most likely have it finished by the end of the week, but I figured giving my first impressions would hold some value so here we are! Sakura Trick is a shamelessly yuri slice-of-life show with some nice cute light fan service. I was originally going to start No Game No Life after finishing Re:Zero, but I felt that it probably wasn’t a good idea to go into another isekai (transported to another world) series right off the bat and I also felt the need to have some nice light hearted fluffy fun after the intensity of Steins;Gate and Re:Zero. And so far, Sakura Trick has delivered! At this point it’s not really anything to write home about other than the mentioned shameless yuri nature, but that’s fine. I don’t really see it scoring above an 8 for me unless it really steps up its game, but again, I think that’s fine. I can use an easy, solid 8 to watch right now. Hopefully it continues to at least be a fun cute watch.

-Shigofumi
-Shingeki no Bahamut: Genesis (Rage of Bahamut: Genesis)

-Steins;Gate - Completed:
I’ve been meaning to watch this anime for a while as it had been consistently in the MAL Top 10 rated anime. Unfortunately, I didn’t end up watching it when it first came out because Chaos;Head (a series kind of in the same world or something) really didn’t impress me with its first episode. I later found out that there was no real reason to watch Chaos;Head first, but then I just wasn’t able to find the time. The Challenge was a good excuse to finally watch this and I’m glad I did! Steins;Gate ended up being rather great with an interesting plot and fun characters. I ended up giving it a solid 10 and it places rather high at #13 on my working Top 100 List. However, it is still kind of hard for me to recommend to people because damn, the early episodes were REALLY slow and felt kind of pointless during the first viewing. I wasn’t really attracted to the characters at first and the early episodes felt very “slice-of-life” but with very flat jokes. The characters did eventually grow on me and the plot was amazing when it finally began to kick in! But that didn’t really happen for me until around the 8th episode. If someone says they dropped the series after watching two or three episodes because they were bored, I really can’t fault them for it and that is a shame. I do feel like knowing what I know now about the series and after getting a feel for the characters, I think those early episodes will be more fun for me whenever I’m able to re-watch it. But again, it’s a shame that the series couldn’t do that the first time around.

-Trigun - Completed: And here’s a true classic anime! I’d actually seen a random episode of Trigun a few times on TV in the past (meaning the same random episode two or three times for some reason), but I never sat down and watched the whole series until I needed an anime from the 1990s for this challenge. This was actually the anime that kind of caused me to fall behind on my challenge. I started watching it on 28 March and didn’t finish it until 16 September. Kind of like with Steins;Gate, the early episodes didn’t really grab me. The first half of the series was very episodic and the series was old. There were hints of something greater and Vash being an interesting character, but it never got through to me with the early stuff. It wasn’t until the series got into his backstory that we really got into the full extent of how much of a pacifist Vash really is, how much the act of taking a life really hurts him, and it wasn’t until the last few episodes that I really felt some major emotions in this story. Until the last five or so episodes, I really didn’t expect Trigun to break my Top 100, but I was able to give it a solid 9 and it is currently sitting at #66 for me. I would really like to re-watch this series sometime because (again, like with Steins;Gate) I feel like I’ll have a better appreciation for Vash’s character now.

-Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. (My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU)
Posted by pluvia33 | Oct 10, 4:54 PM | 0 comments
September 29th, 2017
Yeah, so the title pretty much says it. I'm kind of bored stuck at work so I figured I'd check in; kill some time until I can be released home.

First, in my personal anime news from the last month, a little while ago I created a simple Excel file to track how much anime I still have to watch for my Anime Challenge. I just wrote up all of the remaining episodes left in my challenge, had them added up, did a date range from today to the last day of the Challenge (24 Dec 2017) to get a number of how many days I have left, then divided remaining episodes by remaining days to get a number of the average number of episodes of anime that I have to watch each day between now and then to be able to actually finish my challenge. It actually helped quite a bit at first. I finished Trigun and Little Witch Academia, caught up on Kubikiri Cycle, and got a few episodes into Steins;Gate. I've slipped again in the last few days, though, and haven't watched much at all this week. As of now I still have 254 episodes of anime to watch. With 87 days left during the challenge period, that means I need to watch on average 2.92 episodes of anime each day. It's definitely doable, but lately I've been pretty busy....

So, what have I been busy with? First and foremost, I've been busy with work. As a financial professional this is a busy time of the year because 1 October starts a new Fiscal Year. So now we have to make sure all of our fiscal year 2017 money is spent so that means some late hours and some overtime pay!

Other than that board games have been taking up a lot of time lately, both in playing them and developing them. Not only have I been playing a lot of games with my friend David, I have also been helping him with a few games of his that are in development: a recent Kickstarter-funded game called Pocket Neon City Rumble and a not-yet-named, very early in development game. I actually did a lot of major re-writes for the Pocket Neon City Rumble rulebook including pretty much making an all new solo play mode from scratch. As someone who has loved making original system content for D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder, this is something that I really enjoy doing.

So yeah, after I get through this weekend I think I'll be able to get back into watching anime again in a big way and smash this challenge! I'll write my usual challenge update after I make some more progress (hoping I can finish Steins;Gate and then watch all of Re:Zero really quick, having all of the more-than-13-episodes items completed). But for now I'll just say that Trigun really didn't connect with me all that much initially, but really gained steam around the halfway point and really pulled things together for the last few episodes to get a 9. Little Witch Academia was awesome! Just loved it. It got a very solid 10! I've been getting more into Kubikiri Cycle; still don't love it, but it's not as much of a chore to watch anymore. It likely won't get any higher than an 8. And I've been liking Steins;Gate so far. I haven't fully connected to the characters yet, but they're growing on me. Hopefully this highly rated series doesn't disappoint.

Oh, in other news, I've also been playing some video games to unwind at home when I probably should be watching anime. But hey, I love anime and don't want it to become a chore; it won't be the end of the world if I'm not able to complete my challenge. Anyway, I ended up getting back into Skylanders.... Yeah, I've been thinking of diving back in for a while now, but I finally returned to the series when I saw that the Skylanders: Superchargers starter set for PS4 was on sale at Walmart for only $10! Funny thing is that when I was contemplating getting back into the series, I was going to just skip Superchargers because the vehicle concept/gimmick just didn't really appeal to me. But I just couldn't pass up such a deal! And then after getting that, I had to catch up some and I ordered Trap Team from Amazon right after along with a bunch of new figures.... Yeah, I probably dropped over $300 on new Skylanders stuff this month. =P It's been fun playing it again, though.

I've also finally been getting into playing Final Fantasy Tactics on PSP. I played the crap out of the original Playstation version and it's been a lot of fun revisiting the game. I usually play a little in bed before I go to sleep and I'm planning to bring my PSP to work tomorrow since there will be a LOT of downtime as we wait for money to fall out. I hadn't really been feeling like playing handhelds these last few years, but I'm starting to get a feel for it again. Good stuff. Maybe I'll finally play my DS copy of Chrono Trigger after this! XD

Anyway, that's about it. I'll hopefully be able to leave work soon and then it will be time for the long, long haul tomorrow as it's the last day of the fiscal year. Weeee!!! ^_^
Posted by pluvia33 | Sep 29, 3:59 PM | 0 comments
August 23rd, 2017
Anime Relations: Trigun
It's been over a month since my last update and I've finally worked on fixing some of the damage caused by Photobucket being assholes: I've fixed my "2017 Anime Watching Challenge" badge, my two most image-intensive blog posts (my Top 100 Anime/Manga Series list and old Top 25 Anime/Manga Girls list), and my little Paprika vs. Inception post which rustled some dude's jimmies pretty hard because he couldn't bother himself to actually read what I wrote. There are probably a few other things on here that need fixing, but those were the most critical. But yeah, I'm using my Imgur account for hosting my hotlinks now. I'd made the account nearly a year ago but never used it until now. I'm liking them better than Photobucket. Hopefully they don't die or become assholes any time soon.

Aside from that there's not too much to report at the moment. I finally sat down and watched a few more episodes of Trigun. Hopefully I can get more into the anime watching soon. I also went back to my home town of Dayton Ohio for the weekend a little while ago to see family. That was nice, although I wish it could have been longer. I'll hopefully be taking a longer vacation after the end of the fiscal year is behind me; maybe some time in December or January. And really that's about it. Just a quick little update for now. Hopefully I'll write more soon. Laters!
Posted by pluvia33 | Aug 23, 1:04 AM | 0 comments
July 19th, 2017
So it's been a while since I've posted a blog entry and even longer since I've made a post about anything other than my Anime Watching Challenge. And I actually originally tried to make this post a little over a week ago, but I forgot that MAL forces at least one related anime and lost the entire post.... But that's not really what the "annoyed" part of the title is referring to; at least it wasn't originally. That part of the title comes from this:

Photobucket Is Holding People's Photos For "Ransom"

This might be somewhat old news by now, but man does this suck! I've used Photobucket for years and now they want me to pay $400 to be able to use the main feature that I originally went to it for (3rd party hot linking pictures). It really, really sucks as any pictures used in my blog are hosted on Photobucket and now I have to figure out what I'm going to do about it. This was particularly devastating to my Top 100 list. Hopefully I can find an alternative host and fix the blog posts that matter the most to me, but that might not be for a while.

Anyway, now for a few personal updates:

-A Big Break-up (again): Probably the biggest news in my personal life is that my wife and I have separated. We probably won't get formally divorced again until sometime next year so she can stay on my health insurance and we can keep our taxes simple, but at least her dad isn't being a stickler about her dating someone else while still married this time around. It's kind of sad that our nearly 7-year long romantic relationship has come to an end (again), but I think it's for the best and we'll both hopefully be happier this way.

-A New Roommate: With my wife out of the house and her taking the guest bedroom furniture (it was a set past down to her from her grandma), I had an extra empty bedroom. I offered it to Dan, one of my oldest friends here in New Mexico, and he jumped at the chance to become my roommate! He's been living with me for almost a month now and it has been working out pretty well. It kind of sucks sometimes that he usually works evening shifts at his job so he's gone a lot of the times when I get home from work, but I still get to see him a lot more often now than I was before, so that's cool.

-Board Game Otaku: I've been getting even deeper into board games lately. Buying new games either locally or via Kickstarter has been the main use of my disposable income lately. I've also been playing games a lot with my friend David who actually works on board games as an artist and has even successfully funded two games of his own via Kickstarter! It's been really nice playing games with him, although he can get really busy sometimes with his art work. But yeah, good stuff!

-Vegan Otaku: I've made the decision to become a vegan starting on 29 May 2017, a few days after my 33 birthday. I don't plan on getting preachy about it, just noting that this has happened. My reasoning for making this change is about 60% wanting to get healthier, 30% trying to reduce my ecological impact, and 10% feeling bad for how food-animals are treated. That is all.

-Anime Slacking: And probably the most relevant update for this blog, I've made VERY LITTLE progress on my Anime Watching Challenge since my last update. I started off pretty strong and was planning to have a bunch of 20-something episode long shows done for my next update! I started with finally giving Trigun a serious watch, got 8 episodes in, and got distracted by life. =P Aside from that, I've watched the 13th episode of Little Witch Academia and have been keeping up with the second season of My Hero Academia (which isn't even part of my watching challenge). So yeah, I hope to get back on track with my anime watching. Dan has watched the first 13 episodes of Little Witch Academia now that they are FINALLY on Netflix, so we might start to sit down and watch the second half together from my downloaded copies. And I'll just have to try to find time to watch everything else that I'm watching by myself. There just isn't enough time in the day!! We'll see how it all works out, though.

And that's about if from me for now. Until next time!
Posted by pluvia33 | Jul 19, 12:06 PM | 0 comments
March 27th, 2017
So after my last update was rather lackluster, I really wanted to have a lot of progress in my next update. My original plan was to try to complete all five shows in between Gabriel DropOut and Zaregoto on the list so there wouldn’t be so much space in between them; I was even going to title this update something like “Cutting Out The Middlemen”. Yeah, it didn’t quite work out. I wanted to get all of them finished within two weeks, but I fell out of the anime-watching mood a bit and it took me nearly two weeks to finish the third series in the gap. By that time, Gabriel DropOut was almost finished airing anyway (and I did finish the series today), so I figured, screw it, the gap won’t even matter by the time I’d watched the other two shows. Anyway, this update was a long time coming, but at least I got a lot of things to talk about this time around; maybe a little too much as far as the episode-by-episode shows go. Oh well. On to the running list:



-Another
-Boku dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED)

-Boku no Hero Academia (My Hero Academia) - Completed:
And here we have my third *new* anime to be scored a 10 from this Challenge (technically Kizumonogatari and Koyomimonogatari were also scored a 10, but they’re grouped into the overall Monogatari Series so they don’t really count as “new”; see a little further down for the second show I scored a 10, while the first was Prison School four updates ago). Anyway, it took me about half way through this series to really develop a connection with the characters from this show, but when I did I REALLY got connected with them. Deku is of course a very touching character, but I also developed deep feelings for his rival Kacchan and I absolutely loved Tsu-chan (one of the tensest moments in the series for me was with her and the main villain; I was totally about to cry hard). With a very large cast, not everyone gets a chance to shine, but just about everyone who does get significant screen time are very interesting and/or loveable. For now, this is my third favorite very-shounen action series after One Punch Man and Full Metal Alchemist with it currently clocking in #41 on my working Top 100 List. I specifically chose to watch this after I realized that the whole “Cutting Out The Middlemen” thing wasn’t working out because I wanted to be able to start watching the second season as it airs starting 1 April and I am so glad that I did! I can’t wait!! ^_^

-Bungou Stray Dogs
-Date A Live
-Death Parade
-Flip Flappers

-Gabriel DropOut - Completed:
Episode 9 was rather good! The girls try to have a nice Christmas party, but before she even arrives Satania calls Vignette to inform her that the day indeed is about the birth of Christ! Something demons like themselves have no business in celebrating; no, it is in fact the perfect day for them to cause wide-spread chaos instead! However, Vignette just wants to have a fun, nice party with close friends so while she is preparing with Raphiel, they make a plan to get Satania over to the “it’s just a day of fun” side of things. It almost goes pretty well, too, but not perfectly. We get some really good Vignette moments during this segment and the segments that follow are also amusing as the group goes to a shrine for New Years and then take a trip back to Heaven and Hell for vacation (though we don’t get any further than customs as Gab is trying to smuggle in gaming paraphernalia). A very solid episode! Episode 10 was also rather good as we get to see a little bit of the characters’ home lives back in Heaven/Hell. Gab just wants to be lazy and sleep into the evening, but her cute little sister is home and wants to play. Satania’s family is just as stupid and overly confident as she is; at least her mom and dad are while her little brother always whips out a quick reality check for their delusions of grandeur (they’re not really high ranking demons in hell, they just run a bakery). Vignette comes home with fond memories of a little monster she saved a year ago, but while she remembered him as being the size of a small dog he is now a 10 ft. tall behemoth. Raphiel was probably the most amusing to me as she is the only character from a very well off family and the only person she interacts with is her masochistic, perverted female butler; love it! Again, another rather good episode. Episode 11 had a major focus on Satania in the first half, having some great interaction with the infamous melon bread stealing dog. It’s a really sweet segment that makes for a great episode, but in addition to that we also finally had the return of Tapris! There is some great moments of her trying to learn how to use a computer by herself and then she has a nice dinner party with the rest of the group. The episode then ends with a bit of a cliffhanger as Gab freaks out after being told that her older sister is coming to visit.... Episode 12 ended the series on a pretty good high note! Gab’s sister was very amusing as she struck fear into the little sister for her fallen lifestyle on earth. Gab’s plots to deceive her sister into thinking she’s still a model angel were amusing and so was what ultimately ended up saving Gab’s ass. This has been a fun series to watch week-to-week with amusing characters and solid gags. Although it was a bit flat at times, the high points easily outweighed the lows so I ended up giving it a final score of a 9. I don’t know if I’d care to buy the original manga (which was recently licensed by Yen Press), but I’d definitely give it a shot if I can find a digital copy and I won’t hesitate to buy the anime if it eventually gets licensed as well. Good stuff!

-Gakkougurashi! (School-Live!) - Completed: Oh man. I loved this show. So much. I knew the basic premise of the show before I started watching, but it was still shocking and very well executed. I cried at least a little at some point of nearly every episode. I just really connected to it. I think this is the second thing during the challenge that I’ve scored a 10 after Prison School. I don’t really want to say too much about the story because if you’re fortunate enough to be able to go into this series completely blind, I really don’t want to ruin that. Anyway, this was used to fulfill item 10, watching an anime by a studio who has only produced 3 to 50 anime. Big props to Lerche for creating such a wonderful adaptation without a whole lot of other anime under its belt. Really, I’m kind of confused as to why it only has an average score of 7.70, ranked at #1057 on MAL. I guess a lot of people didn’t like it as much as I did. Maybe they just didn’t appreciate the moe, slice-of-life style of the series. I don’t know, but whatever, I totally plan to eventually read the manga. Like Prison School, this anime had a great ending for an adaptation of a manga that wasn’t finished yet. Love this show!! It moved up the ranking of my Top 100 list in a big way at #32.

-Gi(a)rlish Number - Completed: I watched this anime to fulfill item 51, watching a slice of life show, and it was honestly extremely hard for me to evaluate. It was somewhat interesting, giving what seemed like a pretty realistic look at the anime production business with a focus on voice acting. Although there were moments that would make me giggle and smile, for the most part I was bored while watching it and now that it’s over I don’t really have any desire to re-watch it ever. For me, mostly being bored and not caring to re-watch something puts it into a score range of 6 or lower. However, thinking about it really hard and putting into consideration that it was mostly a well-constructed show that made me giggle and such at least a few times each episode, I ended up going ahead and giving it a 7. It was really close, though. But the series just didn’t really connect with me. I’m a little worried that it might be a lack of interest in idol-type stuff and that I might also end up bored with Love Live! whenever I end up watching that. Maybe the school life aspect will help, though. I guess we’ll see.

-Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita (Humanity Has Declined) - Completed: This is a series that I initially watched the first episode of a number of years back (closer to its original 2012 airing) with some friends of mine. We were going to do a weekly anime night, but we ended only meeting once, watching the first episode of a bunch of different series. Anyway, this one had a rather memorable scene of a living piece of bread ripping itself down the middle of its body, spraying blood-like carrot juice everywhere. Now as I finally pick the series back up and finish it, it’s pretty damn weird and at times a little on the too-deep-for-me side of things. It was definitely an interesting show that I got a good amount of enjoyment out of, but it won’t rank up in my favorites of all time (ending up with an 8 score). But I can definitely say it was a memorable experience and the bread scene was easily outdone in my mind with the second episode which included what felt like obvious Cowboy Bebop action parodies. Good stuff.

-Kaiba
-Kekkai Sensen (Blood Blockade Battlefront)

-Kubikiri Cycle: Aoiro Savant to Zaregototsukai - Watching:
I’m still not quite sure what to think about this series; I’m not really connecting with the characters too much yet and the dialog doesn’t feel as engaging to me as it did in the Monogatari Series and Katanagatari. But anyway, the previous episode ended with the discovery of one of the 12 characters being dead, decapitated in her art studio. Episode 3 is all about setting the stage for a murder mystery and doing some light investigation. Again, not too much to really pull me in. We’ll see if it develops into anything as the series goes. I mean, it took six or so episodes before I really started to like the characters in My Hero Academia. And just to note, even if there’s a long time in between updates, I’ll only be watching one episode per update since the episodes are coming out monthly; don’t want to run out of stuff to watch too quickly.

-Little Witch Academia - Watching: Episode 9 was a rather sweet story about family as the girls accidently raise a zombie. It was kind of basic, but I was amused and the ending was very touching. Episode 10 is one of my favorites so far! Using love-magic as the main driving force behind the story is rather cliche, but it was executed so well. I loved the classic-shoujo-vision used to illustrate the charm effect and there were a ton of good gags and some nice touching scenes. Great stuff! Episode 11 was also a great episode which actually injected some major plot points into the story. We get some mysterious elements behind the world of Little Which Academia and what it means for Akko to progress as a witch. I’m getting the impression that the second half of the series is going to be much meatier in the plot department than the first and I’m really looking forward to seeing where they take things. Episode 12 continues to hint at the developing overall plot of the series, but it focuses more on preparing for a new event and a silly story about Akko being transformed to look like Diana. There are also some more nice scenes of Akko’s training and learning more about what it means to follow in Chariot’s footsteps. Another rather solid episode.

-Love Live! School Idol Project
-New Game!
-No Game No Life
-Potemayo
-Re:Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu
-ReLIFE
-Sakura Trick
-Shigofumi
-Shingeki no Bahamut: Genesis (Rage of Bahamut: Genesis)
-Steins;Gate
-Trigun
-Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. (My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU)
Posted by pluvia33 | Mar 27, 7:41 PM | 0 comments
March 5th, 2017
In previous weeks, I was rather sick and calling into work a lot and there was also a holiday in there. There was no such extra days off this week; I worked a full five-day work week. Lame. There were also a few other things going on so I didn’t get that much progress on my challenge this week. However, I did make sure to at least finish one new show, so I had a total of 15 episodes worth of progress. However, if I keep this up and watch at the very least 15 episodes a week, I won’t have any problems with completing my challenge on time. Good luck, me!



-Another
-Boku dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED)
-Boku no Hero Academia (My Hero Academia)
-Bungou Stray Dogs
-Date A Live
-Death Parade
-Flip Flappers

-Gabriel DropOut - Watching:
Although I’m sad that Tapris once again didn’t make an appearance, episode 8 is one of my favorite episodes so far! Everything just worked really well. Each character got some good screen time with Satanichia and Raphiel especially having some of their best content yet and Gabriel’s trip to the cooking club felt both in character and ridiculously adorable! Vignette’s part wasn’t quite as strong as everyone else’s, but she did play a good supporting role, especially as Satanichia’s “straight man” during the interview segment. Easily one of my top three favorite episodes so far with episode 1 and Tapris’ episode being my other two favorites. Hopefully they can keep this up until the end from here. ^_^

-Gakkougurashi! (School-Live!)
-Gi(a)rlish Number
-Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita (Humanity Has Declined)
-Kaiba
-Kekkai Sensen (Blood Blockade Battlefront)

-Kubikiri Cycle: Aoiro Savant to Zaregototsukai - Watching:
With episode 2, I’m still not quite sure what to think of this series. This time around, some of the conversations felt a little more engaging, but I’m still not connecting with the characters quite as much as I have in other NISIOISIN works. However, the ending of this episode definitely made me interested in seeing the next one. We’ll see how that turns out, but either way I’ll be in it for the whole series since it’s part of the challenge.

-Little Witch Academia - Watching: Episode 8 was all about Sucy in a large way. We get a glimpse into her subconscious mind as Akko travels into her dream world. It was rather amusing and a nice way for Trigger to really cut loose a bit more than usual with their animation and silliness. Good stuff!

-Love Live! School Idol Project
-New Game!
-No Game No Life
-Potemayo
-Re:Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu
-ReLIFE
-Sakura Trick
-Shigofumi
-Shingeki no Bahamut: Genesis (Rage of Bahamut: Genesis)
-Steins;Gate
-Trigun

-Watashi ga Motete Dousunda (Kiss Him, Not Me!) - Completed:
Watched to fulfill item 48, watching a shoujo anime. When I was hearing about this show last year, I was a little iffy about it. The concept of a fat fujoshi BL otaku having some significant, unexpected weight loss and then becoming really cute and catching the eyes of four attractive guys at school felt like it could easily go wrong. Like, oh, so these guys are only interested in her because she lost weight and stuff; but it actually ended up being a rather touching shoujo romance series with a lot of hilarious comedy! One of the guys (best boy, Matsumi Asuma) was actually a friend of Serinuma’s before her weight loss as her senpai in the history club and he was the only one of the four guys who immediately recognized her after her weight loss. When she temporarily gains her weight back after constantly eating leftover Valentine’s chocolate from a project, Matsumi just said, “yeah, I guess she got a little chubby,” while the other three initially freaked out like crazy. Oh, and another fun twist was adding a handsome girl into the mix a few episodes in who also fell in love with Serinuma and is actually a rich BL doujinshi artist. She also brings the “you only like her because she became thin and cute” attitude of the other three guys out into the open as she actually liked Serinuma (from a far) before her weight loss and, like Matsumi, didn’t have an issue when she gained her weight back (she actually liked her chubby softness). Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised by this series. It was very fun and funny. It did have a bit of a cop-out ending, but as it’s an adaptation of an ongoing manga and the ending’s comedy was effective, I didn’t mind. However, it really did feel like a once-only season of anime; I’m not expecting a sequel to ever be made. However, like the anime, the original manga for the series is available on Crunchyroll so I’ll definitely be reading that eventually since I tend to like my shoujo in manga form more anyway. Great stuff!

-Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. (My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU)
Posted by pluvia33 | Mar 5, 11:32 AM | 0 comments
February 26th, 2017
With 34 more episodes of anime watched and three more items on my list finished this week, I continue to make good progress on the Challenge. I actually ended up giving everything that I finished this week a 9 score. As I’ve said in my profile, I might be a little easy on my scoring, but whatever. I like a lot of things! Don’t really have much else to say about this week, so on to the list status....



-Another
-Boku dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED)
-Boku no Hero Academia (My Hero Academia)
-Bungou Stray Dogs
-Date A Live
-Death Parade
-Flip Flappers

-Gabriel DropOut - Watching:
So Tapris still hasn’t made her return to the show yet in this week’s episode, but we did get a little bit of an interesting concept of Gabriel and Vignette getting their living money cut because they don’t act correctly; Gabriel is an angel who doesn’t do good deeds while Vignette is a devil who doesn’t do bad deeds. Vignette takes center stage as we only see her trying her best to be bad while Gab is just as lazy as usual. It was amusing and at times really cute, but mostly standard-level stuff for this series.

-Gakkougurashi! (School-Live!)
-Gi(a)rlish Number
-Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita (Humanity Has Declined)
-Kaiba
-Kekkai Sensen (Blood Blockade Battlefront)

-Kimi ga Nozomu Eien - Completed:
I used this series to fulfill item 73 of my challenge, to finish an anime that I had on-hold. This was a rather weird show to pick back up because I watched the first five episodes about 8+ years ago when I bought the DVD set (the first disc in the set) and I hadn’t touched it since then. Yeah, so I generally knew what had happened in the first five episodes, but it was still weird to pick it up from there. Thankfully, in episode 12 out of 14 there was a quick flashback of clips of everything that had happened up to that point, so that was nice to remind me of some of the things that went on right before the climax. And I have to say, the ending was rather great! Watching the show again at first was a bit hard to get into. It moved at a really slow soap-opera pace with very little going on in each episode. But I rather enjoyed the ending and the series as a whole when all was said and done; it all came together really well. I don’t know for sure if it would make it into my Top 100 or not, but I did go ahead and give it a 9, so it’s possible. I’ll have to let it sink in to know for sure if it makes the cut.

-Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku wo! (KonoSuba) - Completed: This is a series that has been talked about a lot as one of the best comedies of last year. I watched all ten episodes of the first season in one day, watching it to fit item 29 as an anime adapted from a light novel series. Yeah, I had a lot of options that could have filled this one. But KonoSuba is a fantasy comedy, so it felt pretty much right up my alley. In the end, yes, it was a pretty fun show. I ended up giving it a 9, but like a number of other things I’ve watched for this challenge so far, I’m not quite sure where it will fall in my Top 100. As with Rakugo, I’ll probably have to wait until I watch the second season to really know for sure. More stuff to watch after I’m done with my challenge stuff! Anyway, this was a fun and funny show with nice characters. I don’t really have much else to say about it beyond that....

-Kubikiri Cycle: Aoiro Savant to Zaregototsukai - Watching: This is the last item on my list that is “currently airing” in Japan. I used it to fulfill one of the easier conditions in the challenge, item 71, to watch an anime that has a main character with an unnatural hair color. I suppose that’s actually a little less common with more recent anime as many creators don’t seem to use the old “different color hair” trick to differentiate characters anymore. One of the main reasons I picked this show to fulfill this item is because Tomo Kunagisa’s blue hair is actually canon. Most shows just have crazy hair colors for their characters and never mention them, acting like the color is perfectly normal. I think this is the first time I’ve ever seen a series actually acknowledge a weird hair color like this. Aside from that, I’ve been looking forward to this show since I’m a big NISIOISIN fan. I’ve only watched the first episode so far because it’s an OVA that usually comes out with one episode per month and I don’t want to run out of stuff too fast. Four of the eight planned episodes are out so far with the final episode due out 28 June. Anyway, as far as the actual episode goes, it was a bit harder to follow than most of NISIOISIN shows since instead of focusing on a single one-on-one conversation for most of the episode, the main character talks to I think five different people throughout the episode. It seems like it can be a nice show, though. I look forward to watching more.

-Little Witch Academia - Watching: In episode 7 Akko continues to be the poor, bumbling student with heart. This episode was funny and heartwarming with some more nice student-teacher bonding between Akko and Ursula-sensei. The series continues to be a pleasure to watch every week.

-Love Live! School Idol Project

-Natsume Yuujinchou (Natsume's Book of Friends) - Completed:
So here’s a series that I’ve heard good things about for many years but am only now giving it a shot with it satisfying item 31 in the challenge, watching an anime adapted from a manga with an average score of 8.0 or more. As I began watching, the first thing that stood out to me is Natsume’s voice as I was pretty sure that it was Hiroshi Kamiya just by ear and I confirmed it to be so after watching the first episode. Funny enough, since the anime is mostly centered around the main character dealing with supernatural beings, this made me think of Natsume as the shoujo version of the Monogatari Series (as Hiroshi Kamiya also voices Araragi). Fun stuff, although I was a little sad at the lack of Natsume/Monogatari crossover fanart that I could find on the internet. Oh well. Anyway, I liked this first season rather well! For the most part it was a nice, clam, touching series with interesting stories and characters. Like all of the other stuff that I finished this week, I gave it a 9, but don’t know where it will fit in my Top 100 (if it makes the cut). But with season 6 coming out during the next anime airing season, I’ll have plenty more to watch before I make my decision! And yes, I feel that it is definitely worth watching more, especially when I just feel like chilling out. Good stuff!

-New Game!
-No Game No Life
-Potemayo
-Re:Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu
-ReLIFE
-Sakura Trick
-Shigofumi
-Shingeki no Bahamut: Genesis (Rage of Bahamut: Genesis)
-Steins;Gate
-Trigun
-Watashi ga Motete Dousunda (Kiss Him, Not Me!)
-Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. (My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU)
Posted by pluvia33 | Feb 26, 9:09 AM | 0 comments
February 18th, 2017
So I’m posting this week’s update a little early because I just finished off my 18th anime for this challenge! 31 more to go! Yeah, with 30 episodes of anime watched this week, I’d say I’m pretty well on track to complete this challenge without much trouble. Yay! And I don’t really have anything else to say about this week, so one with the anime challenge list....



-Another
-Boku dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED)
-Boku no Hero Academia (My Hero Academia)
-Bungou Stray Dogs
-Date A Live
-Death Parade
-Flip Flappers

-Gabriel DropOut - Watching:
Sadly the wonderful Tapris who made her debut last episode was completely absent from episode 6. That’s a shame; I really hope she’ll pop back up soon. However, the major focus on Satanichia in this episode kept it pretty amusing, though mostly just on par with most of the other episode. Not bad, but not particularly amazing either.

-Gakkougurashi! (School-Live!)
-Gi(a)rlish Number
-Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita (Humanity Has Declined)
-Kaiba
-Kekkai Sensen (Blood Blockade Battlefront)
-Kimi ga Nozomu Eien
-Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku wo! (KonoSuba)
-Kubikiri Cycle: Aoiro Savant to Zaregototsukai

-Little Witch Academia - Watching:
Episode 6 of Little Witch Academia was rather touching as Akko continues to have trouble with learning proper magic. Although she gets really discouraged when things weren’t going her way, she was able to feel better again thanks to Ursula-sensei. And yeah, the animal ear stuff was super cute, too! Good stuff.

-Love Live! School Idol Project
-Natsume Yuujinchou (Natsume's Book of Friends)
-New Game!
-No Game No Life
-Potemayo
-Re:Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu
-ReLIFE
-Sakura Trick
-Shigofumi
-Shingeki no Bahamut: Genesis (Rage of Bahamut: Genesis)

-Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu - Completed:
One day this week I had trouble falling asleep and watched the last four episodes to finish of this first season. I actually had some weird thoughts about this series after finishing episode nine which ended up being totally wrong, I think. This season was definitely solid, though. I’m glad to have watched it and I’ve rated this entry with a 9, but I’m not completely sure if it’s enough to break into my Top 100 on its own. I really feel like I need to see how the second season turns out first to know how I really feel about the series. The season didn’t feel very conclusive to me and honestly it didn’t really touch me that deeply. The second season will definitely be one of the first things I watch after I’m done with the challenge since I want to watch that before the next time I officially revisit my Top 100 list.

-Steins;Gate
-Trigun
-Watashi ga Motete Dousunda (Kiss Him, Not Me!)
-Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. (My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU)

-Yuri!!! on Ice - Completed:
So it’s time for me to finally watch perhaps the biggest anime of last year. This is filling item 42 in the challenge, watching an anime with a human main character that is not Japanese, since Victor is Russian. Honestly, the first episode or two of this series didn’t grab me at all, but I think that’s largely because of all the stuff I’ve been hearing about the series; even the most basic theme summaries of the series takes a lot of the thunder away from the early episodes. Anyway, even taking that into account, the anime really picks up after a few episodes and is rather good in the end. The relationships are touching and the competition is really exiting; I always liked figure skating and other performance-based athletics. With these initial 12 episodes, the series doesn’t quite make it into my top 50, but it does fit somewhere into the bottom half of my top 100; not quite sure where at right now, though. Great stuff, though!

-Zero no Tsukaima F - Completed: A big part of this challenge for me was using it as a way to get back to some of the anime that has been on the back-burner for me; things that I should have watched a while ago, but never got around to doing it. Few other things on my list are truer in that regard than this anime. Used to fulfill item 9, watching an anime with one of my favorite voice actors (tsundere queen Rie Kugimiya), not only is this anime from 5 years ago but it’s part of a series that I started watching over a decade ago! Having begun this anime back when I was REALLY getting deep into anime, watching this series again after so long was like being reunited with old friends. Seeing the old characters during the first episode just put a big smile on my face even though there wasn’t much going on. And in the end this season brought a satisfactory close to the series. When I did my Top 100 list, this series as a whole was placed at #42; I don’t see the final season changing its relative position in the ranking for better or worse, but it might get shifted down a bit due to other awesome stuff (like Prison School, as I mentioned last week, being set to place in the 30s). But yes, good stuff and I’m really happy to finally finish the series. These old friends will now be waiting for me whenever I feel like visiting again. ^_^

....In retrospect now, I’m a little sad that I didn’t find a way to work the final season of Shana into my challenge list, too, but I was trying to limit the number of 20+ episode series that I picked. Oh well. Maybe next year.
Posted by pluvia33 | Feb 18, 9:53 PM | 0 comments