So another anime season is wrapping up and anyone who regularly follows the blog and podcast will know that means we have to do the Case Closed Reviews as shows end. We have to do them quickly because the new shows for the SWAT reviews are right around the corner. But there are a few shows that I watch on my own that have wrapped up recently. Since Kate did not watch them I don’t feel like recording a solo Case Closed Review but I do feel like I should put down my finals thoughts in some format. I decided to put out this post just in case anyone was curious how these shows turned out in the end.
S.W.A.T. Reviews: Autumn 2014 Pt. 2
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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. These are the first batch from the new season and now we’ve broken them into (helpful?) categories:
Sentence: Free to Go
Listen – First impressions of Rage of Bahamut: Genesis from MAPPA. It is streaming on Hulu and Funimation.
Listen – First impressions of Akatsuki no Yona from Pierrot. It is streaming on Crunchyroll and Funimation.
Listen – First impressions of GARO: The Animation from MAPPA. It is streaming on Hulu and Funimation.
Listen – First impressions of Hi-sCool Seha Girls from TMS Entertainment. It is streaming on Crunchyroll.
Listen – First impressions of Your Lie in April from A-1 Pictures. It is streaming on Crunchyroll.
Listen – First impressions of Parasyte -the maxim- from Madhouse. It is streaming on Crunchyroll.
Sentence: On Parole
Listen – First impressions of Lord Marksman and Vanadis from Satelight. It is streaming on Hulu and Funimation.
Listen – First impressions of Shirobako from P.A.Works. It is streaming on Crunchyroll.
Sentence: Lock ‘Em Up and Throw Away the Key
Listen – First impressions of Laughing Under the Clouds from Dogakobo. It is streaming on Hulu and Funimation.
Ongoing Investigations: Case #012
We started watching D.N.Angel with the misguided belief that we would review it for the blog. Well, that ain’t happening. I also read all of the manga that has been released in English, this was a much better experience. The manga is fun, cool, sweet, and even a bit heartbreaking. The anime was a weird mix of fan-service and super-filler. There were good episodes and good moments, but there was too much space between these instances. They don’t explain much and some things just plain don’t make sense. They also seem to throw out the whole phantom thieving at one point. Uh? And yeah I’m still pretty bitter that Dark is in love with Riku in the manga but not in the anime. Read the manga and don’t watch the anime!
I liked the Riku and Daisuke solo dynamic but I feel that adding Dark into the mix makes it interesting to read. Since the manga was not completed they decided to simplify the story in order to adapt it. The problem with that was two fold. First they simplified it too much so you were left with large amounts of filler, wasted space, and uninteresting new additions. I’m looking right at you Mio Hio. Ironically several of their attempts to simplify things made several points more complicated or just plain confusing. Secondly we are cruising along the story pacing highway speed limit at 30 MPH and then the anime original ending cranks up the speed to 110 mph. The last two episodes feel rushed and somewhat unexplained at crucial points. It’s not a bad anime but it’s clearly an anime that is inferior to the manga it was based on.
Ghost in the Shell SAC first season finished! Really amazing show, jumped up into being one of the best things I have watched lately. It had a great climatic ending with some serious emotions emerging. I have heard that it is debated whether or not Batou has feelings for the Major, not sure how this could be debated unless you are blind. Whether the Major actually reciprocates is a different story. Seriously though, the sexual tension in the room (you know the scene I’m talking about) was so intense I thought it was going to crack the windows! As for the Laughing Man, I was pleased though I would love to see him again. And as promised I have a Laughing Man wallpaper.
I want to meet the cool dude or lady who fully got Ghost in the Shell SAC the first time through. I wish to shake the hands with such a genius. I got most of it but I am still fuzzy on several of the details of side cases. I thought everything involved with the Laughing Man was awesome. He is such an awesome character. It was well written and well executed. They could have thrown in some more complex episode in between Stand Alone episodes in the middle but that is a minor flaw. The Stand Alone episodes were often as good as the main plot. Good filler, will the wonders ever end? Oh, I would go as far as to say blind and deaf to miss Batou’s feelings.
Read Kekkaishi volumes 13 and 14. The latter ends the first arc of the series and wraps it up quite nicely while leaving a few lingering villains to show up later on. We also get a glimpse of the tremendous power that is housed in Yoshimori. This is also where the anime ends so I am now reading totally new material. I love that the first thing Yoshimori does when he gets home after this whole ordeal is to bake a cake. I am glad to see this aspect of his personality in tact. The rest of book 13 and most of 14 is mostly short adventures but the end of the book looks to be the start of something.
I read Parasyte book 4. Even though it has a high school student as the protagonist it clearly straddles the line between shonen and seinen that makes it hard to categorize some of the titles in Afternoon. It seem like a shonen manga with it’s high school love story. On the other hand it can be placed in the seinen category just by the number of gory deaths of several important characters and countless unnamed ones. I was a little saddened by the death of the major character in this book but I can’t say it was not interesting.
So when you go to the Live-Evil fan-sub group’s website, the top banner changes and I kept seeing this cute picture but it didn’t say what it was. Finally decided to go through a process of elimination to figure it out, turns out it was a show called Ask Dr. Rin. Watched the first couple of episodes so far. It is essentially a magical girl show with Feng-Shui. Meirin has incredible fortune-telling powers using Feng-Shui, she has a secret identity of Dr. Rin who is becoming famous thanks to her website. Her fortune-telling seems to be dead on for everyone but herself. But when the guy she likes is in trouble her power manifest themselves into a dragon like spirit and she is able to save him. Looks like a major baddie caused this and his motives are yet to be revealed. Cute and fun show that promises nothing more than that.
I watched the Dirty Pair OAVs this week and they are just so much fun! I really like that the science fiction elements are there each and every time to make the story cool. Science is not there to be explained or deus ex machina. It’s just there to enhance the story. I like my hard sci-fi anime like Planetes but some times you need to kick back with two hot girls with big guns and watch them kill God in one episode and upper cut children in the next. Kei and Yuri have a fun dynamic that makes them like sexy versions of the stereotypical buddy action movie characters.