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Jan 10, 2023
It's been 11 years since the original run of Tiger & Bunny in 2011, and it shows. It definitely shows. The first season way back then ended on a spooky cliffhanger implying that the nefarious secretive terrorist organization Ouroboros was real and not something Maverick made up to manipulate Barnaby. And I think they forgot what they were trying to do with that plot point. The chief issue with this very latest season is the focus it puts on Ouroboros that ultimately goes nowhere. The primary antagonist here is explicitly a member of Ouroboros, but it's revealed in one of the last moments that she ...
Oct 23, 2022
Shine Post (Anime) add
Mixed Feelings
Shine Post has a fair bit of wasted potential, but the character interactions are enjoyable enough to help tug it to the finish line despite never really deviating from the structure of its generic narrative.

The early episodes are definitely where the show is at its weakest, working through very dime a dozen teenage insecurity character arcs to the point that they double up on the "no, I don't deserve to be center" plot back to back for two of the main characters. Then the show gets incredibly dumb, revealing that the group TINGS's main struggles boil down to how our protagonist Haru is just ...
Oct 17, 2022
The choice of story structure in A3! is bizarre. The time spent on the seasonal troupes is evenly divided, so you get six episodes with each of them. The show starts off with recruiting mostly theater newbies and watching them learn how to act. Then, six episodes later, the show throws them to the side to focus on finding five new guys, who you watch learn how to act, get tossed aside, and repeat. And repeat is the keyword. The whole show is just watching some bumbling idiots learn how to act four times in row. Most of the characters don't get enough screentime to ...
Oct 12, 2022
Shoot! Goal to the Future is sequel to the 1993 series Aoki Densetsu Shoot! which was a fairly standard sports narrative that became defined by its major character death midway through the series. It was an interesting exploration of how a death of a renowned player affects not only his team but also his rivals on other teams denied their chances of ever getting a rematch. The story often took a turn deep into melodrama, but the emotional charge is what sets the series apart from all the dozens of no-names to champions sports narratives out there.

Shoot! the sequel takes that melodrama and throws out ...
Apr 27, 2022
Ahiru no Sora (Anime) add
Mixed Feelings
Nothing really stands out about Ahiru no Sora. At the immediate surface level, the animation never really goes beyond perfunctory in the basketball games, with many scenes being obvious manga panel stills embellished with some sliding motions in the foreground. As is rather infamous, the animation team tries to ape Kuroko's Basketball in conveying how fast the characters are moving, but without the polish of Kuroko's production it just looks comical. Game flow massively suffers as a result, so it's hard to get invested in games when it's often unclear what plays are happening.

Storywise though, I have to give the show props for not being ...
Mar 29, 2022
Sasaki and Miyano is a shallow romance series, where our two leads consist of one guy working up to a 10-year-old's understanding of love and another guy who never learned about boundaries or self-reflection. But worst of all, nothing frigging happens over the whole show.

Let's start with that. The pacing is reminiscent of an adaptation of a never-ending light novel series. It's obvious the kids fall for each other pretty much immediately, yet they'll still waffle over what it all means for the majority of the show's total runtime. The grand feelings realization scenes that should be pivotal for any romance series have zero impact ...
Oct 17, 2021
Mixed Feelings
Love Live! Superstar is a solid show production-wise, but its position as the fourth separate continuity in the franchise only highlights the increasingly formulaic nature of Love Live's writing.

The show starts out promising enough. Kanon is our now apparently archetypal spunky orange-headed protagonist. Unlike Honoka or Chika though, she gets to have real character flaws. She's grumpy, she sulks, she talks back to her family. She loves to sing, but she has struggled for years freezing up in front of an audience. When we meet her, she's convinced she'll never make it as a performer. There's potential for a focused, if rather well-worn, character ...
Aug 10, 2021
This is the stupidest show I've seen in years.

Moriarty the Patriot is at its core a simple revenge fantasy. The villains of the week are all cartoonishly evil beyond parody, characterized only by things like yelling about how much they hate the poor. The purported central theme of Moriarty is that the ills of society lay solely at the hands of the rich elites, yet we take out one bad police commissioner and then treat police corruption as a solved issue. Power structures? No, it's all the work of a few bad apples.

Season 1 at least has the merits of short contained episodes where Moriarty ...
Mar 28, 2021
Idoly Pride (Anime) add
In a word, disappointing. Idoly Pride had a fantastic opening episode that soon degenerated into a very by-the-numbers, predictable storyline. The principal issue with the show is that the characters are never meaningfully challenged and overcome every test without any difficulty. Our protagonists are going to be up against the biggest veteran idols in the industry? I can't wait to see how they'll work to prepare for this! Oh, they just did more of their usual barely coached training routines and won in their first face-off, okay. There is no reason to be invested in their struggles, because, aside from paying some minor lip service ...
Dec 29, 2019
Is it possible to write about Actors without spoiling its core conceit? I don't think so, but I'll do my best.

There's a certain type of anime I love watching for the thrill of never being able to guess what happens next. Usually, these are soap opera-esque melodramas, but I'd put Actors in this category too. And Actors is very different.

Disregard any summaries you may find about this show; they're all wrong. By all appearances, Actors is a slice-of-life about boys who like to sing, but even early on, there are signs that something weird is going on. The town is encompassed by a towering white ...