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Mar 19, 2018
Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu focuses on the bond between a former yakuza member named Sukeroku and a former dancer turned rakugo apprentice named Yakumo who each undergo their own different developments involving the Japanese storytelling performances known as rakugo. The series goes through a number of decades in exploring the different tribulations faced by both men as they progress through the world of rakugo from learning the flaws of their storytelling style to trying to adjust rakugo to the changing times of audience interests in different entertainment venues.

Before I get into my thoughts on the series as a whole, I should explain more about rakugo. read more
Mar 9, 2018
Futakoi Alternative is a surprisingly engaging show in spite of its bizarre and over-the-top story elements. From what I gather, the series is a spinoff of an anime that is based on a dating sim whose gimmick was a male lead having a harem involving several sets of twin girls attracted to him. While that would seem to make the original Futakoi anime rather forgettable and typical fare, Futakoi Alternative is a whole different beast as it takes many of the characters from the original series and goes in a completely different story direction that mashes up sci-fi action, manic comedy, and romantic drama in read more
Feb 24, 2018
Tweeny Witches (or Mahou Shoujo-tai Arisu for Japano-philes) involves female lead Arisu being whisked away to a magical world where witches make use of sprites to maintain the magic of their realm. In spite of her human origins, Arisu finds that she too can make use of magic in the realm and becomes acquainted with witch apprentices, Eva and Sheila, as she learns more of the world's workings.

At a glance, Tweeny Witches sports nothing groundbreaking in regards to its premise and characters. The focus on a magical world with witches is inspired from Western lore and the series is rather predictable in its plot developments read more
Feb 10, 2018
Genocidal Organ is a political thriller film focused on an American special forces officer named Kravitz Shephard who is tasked with trying to apprehend a terrorist named John Paul who is responsible for a series of conflicts and genocides being triggered throughout the world. As Kravitz digs further into the mysteries surrounding John, he finds that the world he assumed to be one where American actions seem just are in reality a fabrication due to mass psychological manipulation from the various world governments to have the populace conform to accepting a new world order where their thoughts and actions are monitored and manipulated.

Genocidal Organ serves read more
Jan 13, 2018
A Silent Voice deals with the consequences of bullying and social isolation in its focus on our lead character, Shoya Ishida, who had participated with his classmates years earlier in bullying a deaf girl named Shoko until they choose to isolate him when their bullying gets more attention from school staff and they attempt to avoid any ramifications for their actions. This isolation continues into high school for Shoya as he deals with the social pressures of his isolation and tries to atone for the suffering he inflicted upon Shoko.

Before I review this film, I should explain more about how serious an issue that bullying read more
Dec 31, 2017
This spinoff for the Fate franchise focuses on two factions of Masters and Servants competing against one another to claim possession of the Holy Grail for themselves. As a result, this series sports a bigger cast compared to what is found in the Fate/stay night timeline which contributes some major pros and cons for Apocrypha.

On the one hand, the battle between two sets of Masters and Servants creates a more grand-scale conflict for this particular Grail War and makes for some entertaining fights between the Masters and Servants participating in the Grail War, especially when multiple characters are involved in elaborate action sequences. The series read more
Dec 22, 2017
To say this remake of Kino's Journey is a disappointment would be an understatement. The original 2003 series was a hidden gem of the decade that depicted a series of short stories that were parables focused on elements of the human condition observed through the traveler, Kino. The stories tended to vary in their mood and intensity, being either bizarre, insightful, or having a dark and twisted element to them. In spite of the changing moods, the 2003 Kino's Journey adaptation did a great job with balancing them out with exploring both the joys and pains of being human.

This remake sadly lacks the subtlety and read more
Dec 9, 2017
Blue Exorcist is focused on Rin Okamura, a teenage boy who is a half-demon born between his human mother and the demon Satan. With the death of his adoptive father, Rin seeks to become an exorcist to slay his father and any demons that threaten humanity.

At a glance, Blue Exorcist doesn't really break any new ground for a shounen series and it certainly shows with its premise. An action-loving young boy outcast from others due to differences in his origins seeking to prove his worth through hard work and perseverance has been hammered out a good deal with a number of other similar titles like read more
Nov 4, 2017
Seven Deadly Sins may look like yet another typical shounen action title in its focus on Meliodas and the titular gang of criminal outlaws. But the series does quite a bit to buck many of the typical cliches of many shounen action titles as the series focuses on Meliodas trying to find the old members of his group while protecting the princess of Leones, Elizabeth, from the corrupt Holy Knights.

The major thing that sticks out with Seven Deadly Sins is the careful balance it delivers with storytelling and action. Many shounen action titles get in the bad habit of focusing too much on their action read more
Oct 31, 2017
Perceptions can be deceiving when one sees promotional artwork for Strange Dawn. What may seem like a children's anime on the surface with its tiny human characters and the two high school girls whisked away to their world actually offers a surprising maturity that you don't typically find with many titles aimed at younger viewers. Focused on high school girls Eri and Yuko being whisked away to another world and worshiped by its inhabitants as gods, the two girls find themselves at the center of a war between two kingdoms with both sides desiring to exploit the status of the girls for their personal gain.

The read more