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Jul 24, 2017
TL;DR – Forget needing another season, Alice & Zouroku could have been twice as good if it was half the length; cutting all the unnecessary, confusing & nonsensical baggage used to get the show to twelve episodes.

It's not uncommon to see people respond to a one cour TV series with “I wish it had another season.” The sentiment being that the often truncated feel of one cour animé would be fixed with more episodes to better develop the shows various characters & ideas. However, I posit that for every series that might have been better if it was longer, there's one that would have benefited read more
Jun 28, 2017
The World of Yami Zukan is a children's horror anthology that homages the short horror comics popular in the 1960s & 1970s. Beginning with a ghoulish narrator's hand opening a mysterious book, it's a style that will seem familiar to those who grew up watching series like Are You Afraid of the Dark? & Tales From the Crypt.

Indeed, it may seem familiar enough that you could be forgiven for thinking it was based on American rather than Japanese comics. The stories & art-styles were clearly heavily influenced by American b-movies & pulp fiction, with isolated farms, lonely desert highways & exotic locales being the read more
Jun 27, 2017
TL;DR – A melodramatic sledgehammer with characters that shed enough tears to fill a swimming pool & more angst than a lifetime of Linkin Park albums. But if a teenage soap opera about pop-rock & unrequited love sounds like your kind of thing, either to cry or laugh along to, then it fits the bill.

Love is hell for a shojo heroine. Particularly so for Nino, whose feelings have remained unrequited since her childhood friend Momo suddenly skipped town in elementary school. Despite the years & common sense suggesting she should move on, Nino has continued to hold those feelings inside, determined that one day they read more
Jun 23, 2017
TL;DR – A cute girls show that is never quite sure what cute things they should be doing, Hinako Note feels unfocused whilst at the same time increasingly focusing on the characters bodies. The potential for a good cute girl show was there, but it really needed a redraft or more editorial oversight to achieve it.

It's not easy starting again in a new city. It's even harder for Hinako, a girl whose social anxiety makes her freeze like a scarecrow when approached by strangers. It wasn't as bad in the countryside, where having a human scarecrow to attract animals away from fields was useful. But read more
Jun 22, 2017
Dou-sama is an alien with a dream – to own his own invasion franchise & conquer the galaxy. After being seen off by his mother, he sets course for fame & fortune with new employees Papu & Chiku. First stop: Earth. But he's about to discover that conquering a planet is harder than it sounds.

Consisting mostly of fish out of water & odd-couple humour, the trio soon realise they're out of their depth & most episodes follow their day to day attempts to adjust to life in Japan; thoughts of global domination giving way to trying local food or finding enough money to pay rent.

Not read more
Jun 22, 2017
Do you love rice? Do you love boys? If yes, you'd better hand yourself in to the police. But before you do, you'd better watch Love Rice. It might make you reconsider your life choices.

Hinohikari is a boy who knows what he wants & what he wants is to be the HarveStar of the Harvest Show. There's just one problem: nobody likes rice any more, which is unfortunate enough when you're a rice-boy (not the car kind) but doubly so when it means the Kokuritsu Inaho Academy he attends is in danger of shutting down. Undeterred, Hinohikari will achieve his dream & save his school read more
Jun 21, 2017
TL;DR – Akashic Records of Bastard Magic Instructor starts off decently enough that you might think to stick around to see if it gets better. It never gets better.

On the list of things the world is lacking, another fantasy high school light novel must rank pretty high. Fortunately, Akashic Records of Bastard Magic Instructor (AroBMI) – so called because Brilliant Bastard wasn't cumbersome enough – is here to provide.

Sistine & Rumia are two friends on their way to the first day of class at the Alanzo Imperial Magic Academy when they have an only in anime collusion with some guy. Said guy turns out to read more
Jun 20, 2017
TL;DR – An oddity even among the growing number of anime reboots, The Laughing Salesman offers a darkly comic, pessimistic &, unfortunately, a little bit dated journey through the underside of Japanese society & human nature.

The last few years have seen a growing trend for older series getting new adaptations. From action classics like JoJo's Bizarre Adventures to children's shorts like Bono Bono, an ever growing number of titles are being given new prequels, sequels, remakes, reboots or simply getting an adaptation years after the source material finished publication. This goes double for The Laughing Salesman, adapting a manga by Fujiko Fuko A that read more
Jun 8, 2017
TL;DR – A pretty typical love story, The Moment You Fall in Love none the less manages to be a rather solid, if standard, execution of the formula within the constraints of its one hour runtime & connection of a broader franchise.

Ah, to be young & in love. If there's one thing every teenager knows, in anime at least, it's what it's like to have a crush on someone they dare not tell, lest it break the spell. For middle school student Hina, the object of her desires is her senior Koyuki, an apologetic & clumsy boy who she falls hard for after a read more
Jun 7, 2017
TL;DR – An unremarkable series that isn't striving for much but doesn't fail to meet it's limited goals. Predictable & cliché, but sometimes it's okay to just be okay.

Chuta is an apparently unremarkable, unassuming teenager; mostly keeping himself to himself despite the efforts of others to interact with him. After a tragic accident in his childhood, he prefers to avoid getting involved to to his residual guilt & lack of self-confidence, timidly trying to quietly get through life. But he has a secret. That voice in everyone's head for him is actually an alien, & there's other aliens out there who want to take it.

Once read more