S.W.A.T. Reviews: Spring 2018

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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.

Sentence: Free to Go

First impressions of Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku from A-1 Pictures. It is streaming on Amazon Prime. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Golden Kamuy from Geno Studio. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of You Don’t Know Gunma Yet from Asahi Productions. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Legend of the Galactic Heroes: Die Neue These from Production I.G. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Megalobox from TMS Entertainment. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Gegege no Kitaro (2018) from Toei Animation. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Crossing Time from Ekachi Epilka. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Lupin III Part 5 from Telecom Animation Film. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

Sentence: On Parole

First impressions of Isekai Izakaya: Japanese Food from Another World from Sunrise. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Magical Girl Ore from Studio Pierrot. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Gurazeni: Money Pitch from Studio Deen. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

Sentence: Lock ‘Em Up and Throw Away the Key

First impressions of Fist of the Blue Sky: Regenesis from Polygon Pictures. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Kakuriyo Bed & Breakfast for Spirits from Gonzo. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Dances with the Dragons from Seven Arcs Pictures. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

First impressions of Comic Girls from Nexus. It is streaming on Crunchyroll. DOWNLOAD

The Birth of Kitaro: The God of All Yokai

narutaki_icon_4040_round Having just recently finished Shigeru Mizuki’s Showa: A History of Japan, it seemed like a golden opportunity to sample his most enduring work Gegege no Kitaro. So when D+Q offered us a review copy of The Birth of Kitaro we jumped at the chance.

hisui_icon_4040_round If you have ever enjoyed Mushishi, Natsume Yuujinchou, Mononoke, xxxHolic, Kekkaishi, or Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan then you owe a great deal of thanks to Shigeru Mizuki. Much like Osamu TezukaGo Nagai, or Rumiko Takahashi he is an artist that has influenced countless titles in an unmistakable manner. Every manga and anime that has spirits, demons, ghouls, ghosts, gods, devils, or monsters has a touch of Gegege no Kitaro in it. In fact most of them are either borrowing heavily for the structure of Gegege no Kitaro or dipping into the cavalcade of mythical Japanese creatures that Shigeru Mizuki popularized. In fact most of them do both.

Yokai existed before Shigeru Mizuki started writing about them and would have been the topic of anime and manga even if he had never been born. They are an integral part of the Volksgeist of Japan. What Shigeru Mizuki did was put his own very particular take on the concept that has become just and much part of Japanese storytelling as the Yokai themselves.

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