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May 16, 2012
Gyo (Anime) add (All reviews)
If Koji Suzuki is Japan's Stephen King, than freaknugget Junju Ito might be their Clive Barker.
In this rather confused adaptation of Ito's "Gyo" Manga, the visceral disgust is so palpable you can feel it clogging up your pores and discoloring your upholstery. Oddly enough, the characters in the story don't seem to notice. Sure, occasionally, they wrinkle their nose and remark about "that smell", but seem oblivious to the rank miasma....even when it becomes a thick yellowish-brown fog bank smeared across the screen.

Story
Gyo shows the early stages of a new kind of Zombie Apocalypse when cyborg fish-corpses invade Japan to infect and assimilate all animal read more
May 16, 2012
(This review applies to the entire series, both the 1993 and the 2000 continuation episodes. Though the second half, especially the last three episodes, is noticeably superior.)

Yes, it is certainly bizarre.
JoJo is the thinking man's surrealist DBZ. Except instead of endless 3-frame loops of tedious "fight animation" it has sudden, subtle, blink-and-you'll-miss-it fight scenes. In it, weird fighters use weird powers in weird ways; typically by outwitting -- rather than merely overpowering -- their opponents.
The series' greatest strength is the unexpected, shocking oddity of it. Whenever you think the series is about to devolve into fighting game cliche, something utterly bugfuck happens. A villain will read more
May 16, 2012
(This review applies to the entire series, both the 1993 and the 2000 continatuion episodes.)

Yes, it is certainly bizarre.
JoJo is the thinking man's surrealist DBZ. Except instead of endless 3-frame loops of tedious "fight animation" it has sudden, subtle, blink-and-you'll-miss-it fight scenes. In it, weird fighters use weird powers in weird ways; typically by outwitting -- rather than merely overpowering -- their opponents.
The series' greatest strength is the unexpected, shocking oddity of it. Whenever you think the series is about to devolve into fighting game cliche, something utterly bugfuck happens. A villain will gleefully and intentionally decapitates himself to show his badassery. A dog addicted read more
Mar 27, 2012
Berserk shows what happens when a cartoon bad-ass fulfills the whims of a Mary Sue: Hacky-Slashy Swords and Sorcery Mayhem...THATS what happens.

The overarching plot of Berserk is the rise and fall of a mercenary army called the Band of the Hawk; especially from the POV of the three most formidable members:
Guts, a Barbarian with anger control issues and a huge penis ext...I mean a huge sword to vent that anger on anyone within 15 feet of him....
Casca, an Action-Chick stuck in a pre-Feminist era that can't appreciate a badass who is also a female. and....
Griffith, a super-Charismatic warlord who is so 'perfect' in every read more
Feb 17, 2012
How about a game of chess?
One with uncontested control over life and death as the prize?

Death Note is an odd fish. The Protagonist is also the villain.
Light Yagami is the perfect little golden boy with a sharp, quick and powerful intellect; but he is also a murderous sociopath with a god complex, and a occult notebook that allows him to anonymously inflict his absolutist worldview on a defenseless society.
That is, until an eccentric detective with a sharp, quick and powerful intellect rivalling Light's own interferes.

What follows is a Xanatos Chess Match of multi-teired crosses/double-crosses/triple-crosses where the two main characters search for clues to their enemies read more
Feb 8, 2012
In this period piece, an angry teenager brutally avenges himself against a conspiracy through the power of his Bishounen employee.

In 'Black Butler' a bitter and furious 12-year old member of the Landed Gentry plots his revenge, Kira-style, on a deranged cult secretly infecting the British Empire.
He does this by siccing his hyper-competent butler on them.
No, really. It may sound silly, but it's actually awe-inspiring.
It works because the two main characters are so well realized. They are both fascinating to watch. One doomed and tragic; the other a razor-sharp cipher. Their relationship, a mutually predatory one, where they tear the flesh off their enemies before read more
Feb 2, 2012
If the opening credit sequence is to be belived, Mohiro Kitoh's "Shadow Star Narutaru" is a cutesy-pie "Azumanga Daioh"-ish kids show about adorable middle-schoolers playing with their happy little Pokeymans.

Don't be fooled.
Narutaru does to that genre what "Utena" does to the magickal girl show or "Evangelion" does to the super-robot show. It traumatizes it before feeding it face-first to the abyss.

Plotwise, it follows the (mis)adventures of three girls, brash and confident Shiina, deeply troubled Sakura and half-confident/half-troubled Hiroko. Shiina discovers a cartoony starfish...um...familiar...that can shapeshift into useful shapes like backpack, flying surfboard, protective bubble, etc.
At first, this is liberating and fun...and the show pretends to read more
Jan 30, 2012
This anthology pairs Katsuhiro Otomo (of 'Akira' fame) and Satoshi Kon (creator of 'Millenium Actress' and 'Paranoia Agent'); It contains 3 unrelated stories, all three of which are nuanced in their execution and beautifully animated.

The first section, 'Magnetic Rose' is an sci-fi ghost story. It feels like what happens if the life story of Marie Callas were re-enacted on the deck of the 'Event Horizon'; haunting, sad and utterly absorbing.

The second section, 'Stink Bomb', lightens the mood by engaging in broad slapstick. In this dark comedic romp, an inept salaryman is chased by the National Defense Forces after becoming the vector of a new, experimental read more
Jan 27, 2012
Goddamn. I never thought I'd ever type the following sentence:
"This Movie is Worse than 'MD Geist II: The Death Force' "

A vacuous cast of cookie-cutter nobodies sleepwalk through a tissue-thin scrap of "plot". The animation wouldn't pass muster in an early 80s saturday morning cartoon. The dialogue is so dumb even Ed Wood, Jr. would've sent it back for a re-write. ...and the "big twist ending"....ye gods!
Even a brain-damaged chimp on Quaaludes could've guessed correctly who the shadowy "Queen of the Demons" was. Especially considering the movie only has three characters:
1) The Bland Marty Stu of a Hero.
2) His Bland Nobody of read more
Jan 25, 2012
Wait...What!?

All of the sudden, Schoolgirl rivals A-Ko (the superbutch spawn of two superheroes) and B-Ko (the spoiled, obscenely wealthy mad scientist) who spent a movie and three OVA's absolutely hating each other and wrecking their school....are suddenly best friends....and space-turtle hunting bounty hunters on a desert planet.

Anyhow, C-Ko is less annoying now because she spends most of these OVA's either asleep or possessed by a demonic witch with delusions of goddesshood.