Ongoing Investigations: Case #204

Message to Adolf (Pt. 1) is one of those titles I’ve been wanting to read for years, having only heard of it by reputation from early English releases. This another one of those thick Osamu Tezuka titles that look really impressive on the shelf.

It takes place pre- and during WWII as many lives converge in Germany and Japan because of a secret about Hitler that could bring down the Nazis. Reporter Toge’s brother is murdered by the Nazis in Germany but not before sending his former teacher in Japan some important papers. This is the catalyst for Toge’s journey from being tortured by the SS to being blacklisted to a deadly showdown on a small Japanese island. Simultaneously  two young German boys named Adolf growing up in Japan become friends despite their parents objections. They both learn the secret of Hitler but vow to stay silent. One is sent back to Germany to join the Hitler Youth while the other stays in Japan with his Jewish community. Those we haven’t seen a lot of these two yet, this are certainly being set-up for tragedy.

It has quite a thriller vibe to it, at points I was feeling an Alfred Hitcock influence, too. It also gets progressively depressing with it ending in a very dark place. After reading this I had to then go watch a movie mocking Nazis instead.

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I see that Blast of Tempest is really divided into 2 distinct parts now that I am 19 episodes into the series. The first part is the rescue Hakaze arc and that is a somewhat pyrrhic victory as they get Hakaze off the island she is stranded on but they majorly change the world in the process. The second arc is the Mage of Exodus story where they deal with the fall out from the first part.

Overall the first part is half buddy adventure film mixed with a bit of a thriller. Mahiro and Yoshino are on the run while people die around them in their search to learn who killed one girl, kidnapped another, and also are orchestrating a sinister series of events all over the world. I know that Narutaki and I really enjoyed the battle of wits at the end between Yoshino and Samon which really capped off things nicely. Samon’s slow degradation as his plans crumble like he was in Death Note but Samon was Matsuda while Yoshino was L.

After that incident the whole show changes when the Tree Of Genesis gains the upper hand and basically becomes an autonomous force of martial law. And so the series gets much calmer as there is not the same rush to stop the end of the world and save Hakaze. It is a much more measured look into what led up to the existence of these godlike trees, who is the true chosen Mage of Exodus, and who killed Aika, a mystery that seems to be at the center of all of this.

The change in tone is pretty bold. I wonder how many people dropped the series just because the shift was so radical. The tempo really slows down and the biggest concern is about people showing up on time for meeting more than who will live and who will die. It does not help that the newly introduced Megumu is a loser even though he is the lesser Mage of Exodus. Although Megumu’s coolest moment will probably being the only person to figure out on his own that Yoshino was dating Aika.

My only question is when are they going to show us the Tree of Lamentations or Deuteronomy.

But in all actuality I am really just waiting to see in we are right and Junichirou is the true chosen Mage of Exodus. I just don’t trust that guy.

The Ongoing Investigations are little peeks into what we are watching and reading outside of our main posts on the blog. We each pick three things that we were interested in a week and talk a bit about them. There is often not much rhyme or reason to what we pick. They are just the most interesting things we saw since the last Ongoing Investigation.

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S.W.A.T. Reviews: Autumn 2012 Pt. 2

The premise of these reviews is simple: watch the first episode of a series and then immediately sit down to record a review mini-podcast. The reviews are five- to ten-minutes long and entirely off the cuff. As always we only review new shows (so no sequels or continuations) and try to avoid anything that just looks outright awful. Here are 8 of the new season:

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Listen – Episode 1 of From the New World from A-1 Pictures with the opening “Wareta Ringo” by Risa Taneda and is streaming on Crunchyroll.

Listen – Episode 1 of My Little Monster from Brains Base with the opening “Q&A Recital!” by Haruka Tomatsu and is streaming on Crunchyroll.

Listen – Episode 1 of Kamisama Kiss from TMS Entertainment with the opening “Kamisama Hajimemashita” by Hanae and is streaming on Funimation.

Listen – Episode 1 of Lychee Light Club from Kachidoki Studio and is streaming on Crunchyroll.

Listen – Episode 1 of Hayate the Combat Butler: Can’t Take My Eyes Off You from Manglobe with the opening “CAN’T TAKE MY EYES OFF YOU” by eyelis and is streaming on Crunchyroll.

Listen – Episode 1 of K from GoHands with the opening “KINGS” by angela and is streaming on Hulu.

Listen – Episode 1 of BTOOOM! from Madhouse with the opening “No Pain, No Game” by Nano and is streaming on Crunchyroll.

Listen – Episode 1 of Blast of Tempest from BONES with the opening “Spirit Inspiration” by Nothing’s Carved in Stone and is streaming on Crunchyroll.