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Mar 24, 2022
Takopii no Genzai, or Takopii's Original Sin, explores the human psyche through the lens of pure innocence and naivete. How do you explain suffering, loss, emotional, psychological and physical abuse to someone who knows nothing of the human condition? This manga goes to very dark places as a cute little alien with strange powers named Takopii tries relentlessly to help and understand humans in the only way he can, with no understanding of just how his well-meaning charity could be twisted and taken advantage of.

This manga exploded in popularity in Japan, and could have easily dragged on for years, but the author chose to end ...
Aug 10, 2021
Mixed Feelings
The Shirobako anime has garnered a respectable fan base over the few short years since its debut, and it's been well deserved. Shirobako brought the meat and potatoes of anime production to audiences with a fun cast of characters and a meaningful story to go along with it. Despite having an almost overwhelming number of characters, it managed to juggle all of its themes together in 24 well paced episodes.

Fans were delighted to hear of a movie sequel just as meta as ever - an anime movie about making an anime movie. But can this film accomplish what the TV series did in just ...
Jun 29, 2021
It pains me to write this, but the finale of Wonder Egg Priority serves not as a satisfying conclusion to the story of the series, but rather the death knell of the production problems that plagued it and the industry in general.

First off, the opening 25 minutes are recap and not worth discussing. The second half is clumsy in its execution at best - full of awkward pauses, editing errors, rushed compositing and stunted pacing, it's painfully obvious the staff still did not have enough time to put the kind of polish on this episode that was present in the beginning of the series and ...
Feb 26, 2020
If you've seen the first Hero Academia movie, you should know what to expect here - but this time the idea of a MHA fanservice story that has no bearing on the main plot has worn out its welcome. And it doesn't help that this movie hits every single plot beat that the last one did.

Once again, this film takes place on a remote island, far away from U.A. High School or any other place that might cause any plot holes. The most major difference is what's on the island - this time, it's a small, rural town full of normal people who live normal ...
Jan 4, 2020
I picked up this film for no other reason than the fact that it was directed by Masaaki Yuasa. This is a very different type of story than he would typically adapt. It's a story about love, coming of age and learning to move on from loss. Colorful, vibrant and fairly easygoing, it does away with most of Yuasa's hallmarks of frantic and wild fever dreams.

Nothing wrong with that, however I don't think the movie is very successful at giving its lead much of anything to do besides being an absolutely hopeless blubbering mess who comes off as a dysfunctional klutz who needs her hand ...
Dec 27, 2019
Let me take you back to 2003. Atsushi Ookubo, creator of Fire Force, is making waves with Soul Eater, a manga that would go on for 10 successful years - sparking an anime adaptation and a spin-off series.

Soul Eater was a stand-out shounen that excelled in not only having a fascinating universe, but also characters that were compelling by having...well, personalities. And while Soul Eater did have characters with wacky quirks - most notably Death the Kid's OCD, used as the butt of many jokes - they weren't the epicenter of every character's existence.

2 years after Soul Eater, Ookubo started Fire Force. And in almost ...
Sep 28, 2019
Mixed Feelings
Shounen is a tried and true genre that has grown through generations of stories building off the predecessors that inspired them. For the most part, audiences and creators alike know what works and what doesn't by now. There are story beats, character archetypes, good-guy power-ups and bad-guy boasts that we've come to expect - and it would be a mistake to think otherwise. Though these tropes are not inherently bad - they are merely another way for us to scratch our unending desire to endlessly categorize and file familiar things in media. It does not matter if the same trope is used a thousand times ...
Apr 1, 2019
A few years prior to the 2nd season of Mob Psycho 100, this series was relatively unknown. One Punch Man - once a goofy webcomic drawn in the charmingly childish style of ONE - was masterfully redrawn by the accomplished mangaka Yusuke Murata, and not long after an explosive anime adaptation from Madhouse introduced the world to the works of ONE.

No one saw Mob Psycho 100 coming. Adapted in ONE's style during the height of One Punch Man's popularity, its humble and unapolagetic flair both intrigued and repelled anime fans. But it didn't take long for those paying attention to take notice of the incredible ...
Jan 25, 2018
A masterpiece needs room to breathe.

Masaaki Yuasa is unquestionably a cut above your average anime director. He has an excellent understanding of how to adapt his source material and always treats it with great respect. He has left his unmistakable mark on anime with a unique flair and instantly recognizable style in storytelling, design and animation.

Devilman: Crybaby is part of the 50th anniversary celebration of works by Go Nagai. Many adaptations of Devilman have been made in the past, but it's been a while. For something this balls to the wall, Yuasa is easily one of the best choices of director for an animation like ...
Jan 25, 2018
Mary and the Witch's Flower is the inaugural film from Studio Ponoc and the 3rd directorial effort from Hiromasa Yonebayashi, whose previous films include the respectable Ghibli efforts The Secret World of Arrietty and When Marnie Was There.

Being essentially an offshoot of Ghibli, you can immediately see the visual cues Ponoc borrows from its roots. In many ways, it is as if nothing changed. From an animation standpoint, this film may as well have been made by Ghibli staff - but I say this not as a criticism, as not only will it take time for Ponoc to develop its own style, but this anime ...