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Dec 2, 2019
Gorgeous animation drives this feature-length film, awash in 1970s psychedelia and brash sexuality. The story has a fable-like feeling to it, although I could never determine if there was a point that was being made (and if there was, whether I even agreed with it). It's an *adults only* film, with sexuality forming a very key part of its identity--going beyond nakedness and into the ambiguous realm of suggestion and innuendo. At times immature (realizing, for example, that the "demon" character is shaped like a penis), but, I feel, generally with a point that feeds the subtext. Unfortunately I don't know what that subtext is, read more
Oct 28, 2019
I've heard how good the Utawarerumono VAs are, but that the first one wasn't ever translated into English (at least, not through legitimate outlets)--but no worries, there's an anime for that! It's not great to feel like you have to watch an anime just to get to the VAs--makes it feel like homework rather than fun series watching--but as far as homework goes, this went down pretty smoothly.

This is about 30% typical anime harem shit (something I have very little patience for these days), 50% political maneuvering (eg, strategy and battles), and 20% sci-f oddities. I'm not usually a politics/strategy kind of guy, but the read more
Sep 25, 2019
It's been nearly ten years since Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood started airing. I remember trying to watch it then (was it an early example of simulcast here in the US?) and struggling with it. I had seen (and loved) the original series, but the pacing of Brotherhood just felt off to me. A few years later after failing to keep up with the simulcast, I would read the manga and "get" why the ending to the original series disappointed a lot of people. I would try again with Brotherhood in the middle of this decade, enjoying it more, getting deeper into it, but would peter out read more
Aug 31, 2019
I consider myself someone who cries easily when given half a reason--I'm sensitive to emotions, especially those (in narratives) that drive fears and loves and sacrifices--but even so, I don't expect any story to cause me to cry regularly during the last 12 episodes the way I did here.

But the entire reason I got to the point of crying at the drop of the hat is the groundwork laid by those crucial first twelve episodes. These characters are truly endearing. Some of it is the way they're written as individuals, some of it is the way they interact with each other (nearly every conversation feels read more
Aug 20, 2019
Oh Angels of Death, what the heck are you?

A suicidal kid and mass murderer teaming up is my kind of bleak. The story arc over the series is basically nonsensical, but at least things flowed episode-to-episode. The ending theme is BOSS, and in general the music cues throughout did a good job of drawing me in.

Things start off feeling like an anime version of a VN (too lazy to look up whether there is one or not) in the "escape the room" vein of 999 or (to a lesser extent) Danganronpa. The good news is I love that kind of thing. The bad news is, read more
Aug 20, 2019
There's not much left to say about Cowboy Bebop anymore. Smarter people than I have waxed wonderful things about the series. I'm a sucker for cool, and Cowboy Bebop oozes cool. It's cool without sacrificing humanity; there are moments within this series (particularly during the last quarter) that are as emotionally taut as anything you'll find in anime. The individual arcs mirror the jazz theme that kicks off each episode: Scattered, seemingly rushed and incomplete. It's when you abandon your need for A to B to C storytelling that Cowboy Bebop's beauty shines. (I wouldn't go so far as to say you need some jazz read more
Aug 20, 2019
Comedy writing is hard enough, but visual narrative mediums (ie, film and TV) also have to contend with comedy TIMING. Funny things can quickly become blasé if the comedic beat is off. This is something that plagues a lot of standard anime series. They can write a joke, but they don't take the time to present the joke. And that's what makes Amagi Brilliant Park so impressive: Episode after episode the comedy feels perfectly showcased. They're not always the funniest of jokes, nor the freshest of ideas, but due to the presentation of them, they stand tall. The success is largely due to timing, but read more
Oct 30, 2017
It's simple: the world needs more 10 episode long series. Especially those of a fighting, Shonen Jump style. Not everybody has time to watch a thousand Bleach episodes. Hell, at this point in life, I'd struggle to get through a 24 episode series. 10 episodes is a sweet spot--I can knock it out in about a week without too much effort.

Length is both Blood Lad's best quality and worst enemy. It was nice being able to watch through a series for once, rather than start a few episodes and get intimidated by the length. on the other hand, to get to 10 episodes, Blood Lad read more