[Review] Another

(Author’s note: this review below is as it is on 27 March 2012 and not modified since. I did not notice this as unpublished until right after publishing the AKB0048 review on 17 May 2012.)

Apart from the artist who sung the opening theme and the full-sized eye in the OP animation, Another (アナザー) is one of those anime where I had no expectations, or know what is to come.

Being taking place in 1998, you have to keep in mind about the technology at that time. Cellphone signals are analog and aren’t strong, so static being heard in the call means a weak signal and/or interference in the area. Since then technology has improved and/or problems fixed, so the “scary” element might not be posible today.

[Review] Guilty Crown

The arrangement of seats on this train looks strange.

Guilty Crown (ギルティクラウン) is somewhat like a mixed bag to me: artwork seems to be at par with anime like Hanasaku Iroha (Spring 2011) with attention to detail and fantastic OP, but, storyline-wise, it’s as bad as anime like To Aru Majutsu no Index (Autumn 2008/2010) where I rage at how slow things progress, or how much of an idiot the protagonist is.

Well, at the beginning, this showed promise of how this would be, but it later unexpectedly took a turn in a direction different. I was expecting a more diplomatic and peaceful approach, not a mad scientist with his own government and spreading a virus. Having war with a group of students on top of that. (Speaking of which, where are the teachers of the school? They seem oddly missing the whole time.)

If you’re just picking this up, I would recommend just starting from the special that comes after episode 11. You are likely to be glad that I mention it because it sums up the major plots of the earlier episodes, which has a lot of filters.

Pretty much sums up of Shuu’s character throughout the anime.

Starting form the second half, the atmosphere has become completely different. It’s as if it has gone in a different direction from the first half and has become irrelevant.

In the last few episodes, I somewhat gave up try to understand what is going on. It has become a big mess that is difficult to untangle. That’s the problem with introducing too many characters: there’s no room to have character development given the number of episodes.

Guilty Crown does have the factors to be a good anime like character design, detail to background, opening/ending songs and so on, but the major flaw is that the storyline is a mess.

Based on other anime that I watched, it’s always those that have male protagonist (who is usually not knowledgeable, is perverted, and/or being ordered by others) that gets featured. Besides anime where the females are the only ones, or primarily focused on, girls/women seem to always to have a role that is no higher than being the main supporting character of the (male) protagonist: never as the main character.

P.S. Speaking of which, Shuu Oma’s cowardly behavior would be more tolerable if he was a girl, with the personality unchanged.

[Review] Black Rock Shooter review

An emotional one BRS (ブラック★ロックシューター) is, it’s about the two worlds: one is about two girls in the normal world, and another in a completely different one where they fight each other with weapons. The fights in that world represents the hidden frustration and anger with their counterparts in the other (“real”) world. I don’t really understand the concept that forms the backbone of this anime. Visual-wise, it’s what I had wanted Nisemonogatari to be like initially, but you know how that turned out.

From what I understand, having something to happen with that alternate world can cause an effect with the real world too, and forget who their friends are. Some people in the real world, they could see what’s happening in the other world, but don’t exactly have control over their other selves and helplessly stay in the background.

Unlike other anime, the first episode aired 4 weeks after all the other Winter 2012 anime (early-February) and has 8 episodes instead of the average of 11 or 12. However, it already has an OVA and it does not waste it with filter episodes and actually fills it up with actual story development. I don’t see a way on how to improve on this anime than it already is.

BTW, have you noticed that there are absolutely no lines for any male characters in the entire anime, not even side characters? Also, they made episode 6 (I think) looked like the last episode with how it ended.

[Review] Nisemonogatari (偽物語)

Nisemonogatari was the second season of Bakemonogatari (化物語), with the latter being a 12-episode Summer 2009 anime. With two and a quarter years between the two (didn’t know it was that long ago myself until I calculated), I expected something completely different in terms of visual style. Something like K-On.

But then, it’s by Shaft… the same who did Bakemonogatari. Read my earlier posts and you would see about my disappointment with Shaft.

This actually appeared in the anime.

Unlike Bakemonogatari where there are 5 arches, Nisemonogatari seemed to only have 2 story arches. However, it focuses on Araragi’s sisters (who were shown only briefly in Bakemonogatari) than to other characters. Senjougahara Hitagi had the opposite amount of airtime in Nisemonogatari. Shinobu had slightly more time and have a voice.

Still, there are moments that would give me a big question mark, like this scene:

I don’t get this scene.

Overall, I like the storyline, but there is too much visual distraction. One example are the rapid flashes of images, or a wall of text that were displayed that is too quick to read without pausing. On top of that, text that is usually in hiragana is in katakana or some obscure kanji that is not used today. Also, the traditional version is used instead of simplified (eg. 體 instead of 体) and horizontal text is from right to left. It’s fried my head trying to figure out what I was looking at.

Oh the other hand, I like the ending song.

Mirai Nikki dropped

“I used to be able to predict the future like you, but then I took an arrow to the knee.”

When the first episode of Mirai Nikki (未来日記) anime came out, I had already spoiled myself by reading the manga from the beginning to the end. The fun of watching it kind of got lost because of that.Actually, even as I read the manga, I never like how much of a coward the protagonist (Amano Yukiteru) is, or how much of a crazy girl Gassai Yuno is. In fact, I felt that the concept of Mirai Nikki itself could have been portrayed better.

Although the anime is based on the manga, the character design seemed somewhat dated (Amano looked like a Pokemon trainer). That omake section at the end of the anime already tells me that there would be quite a number of filters. Having known what the end is like, you would wonder why they had wasted a lot of time with all of those filters. I only hung around to see what difference the anime is from the manga is, but seems like exactly the same thing. If you had read the previous post, I had talked about what my expectations are.

What pushed me to drop it is that I found myself not wanting to watch more episodes, and the massive amount of new winter anime coming in, which themselves seem quite good, I see no reason to keep watching it.

[Review] Ben-To

BEN-TO (ベン・トー )

Screencaps for my Autumn 2011 reviews were/are chosen at random

 I’ve seem to have been picking up and dropping this anime before, usually because I found it boring at first and, either found out that it got better later on, or, after dropping all the other titles, this seemed to be the better than what I had dropped and don’t have much to watch. In this case, it’s the latter.

I’ve been sitting on this since after writing the Un-Go review, wondering how to review this anime, and my mind is a blank. Well, not really. Just short of what I usually write.

To sum this up, this anime really ended the same way it started, which is really about high school students (and older) hanging around at supermarkets waiting for a staff to have the price of lunch boxes be reduced by half. If you’re unfamiliar of this concept, it’s like unsold sushi close to the end of the day, which should be consumed on the same day it’s made. These lunch boxes usually cost around 450 yen (as prominently displayed in the anime), so, to a student, the amount saved matters to them. The only challenge with this is the number of other people fighting (no, really) over the limited remaining quantity of the said lunch boxes.

Logically speaking, I don’t think fighting over discount food like this actually happens in real life. At least, not in the way portrayed with this anime. What I’m more surprised is that the supermarket staff, other customers not involved in it, and, if any, security staff, seem to be quite oblivious to this despite the amount injured from the fighting and the noise they make.

I don’t get this anime, even after watching all of its episodes.

[Review] Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai

I Have A Few Friends (僕は友達が少ない)

Also known as Haganai for short (based on the non-kanji parts of the name), is a slice-of-life anime.

I don’t know what to think of this anime, but this somewhat a love-hate relationship with me. The noticeable thing with the anime compared to others are the eyes and the lips, especially ones of girls. The lips seems to always have some kind of lipstick on.

In terms of content, only the first 2 and last 2 episodes has actual content, and the rest are just filters and fanserverce with little actual content. So much that I actually felt like dropping it.

I don’t really remember much at the top of my head, but I do have to say that it’s better than Seitokai no Ichizon (Autumn 2009) or other anime that I dropped quickly.