What Is A Good Anime To Me?

(Cross-posted from my main blog)

K-On! (Spring 2009)

Dual! Parallel Trouble Adventure (Spring 1999)

Excluding anime that seem to go on forever (eg. Bleach) or targeted at children (eg. Doraemon), I have watched new anime, since 2006. Of course, I had watched some older ones like Kahimashi, Cowboy Bebop, and Lain.

I never noticed it unless I looked back (for anime since 2006) or watched older ones, but character design and background details in general has improved. Or it could simply because more recent ones looked better in widescreen in HD over the older lower-definition letterbox standard.

The early 2000s was a transitioning period for animation studios for doing each frame using computers over a cell sheet. To the viewers, this means that higher detail could be inserted, and scenes with things moving would not have everything else on the scene to be “moving”.

Character designs can sometimes be timeless or be specific to the general era, but you can generally tell. The differences between the original Kanon (Winter 2002) and the remake (Autumn 2006) is an example of a big improvement of design. Not just visually, but how the story is executed too.

Death Note (Autumn 2006)

The main thing that tells you about an anime is its opening and ending, and the segments surrounding it. While I do agree that Death Note is the odd one out with the use of (very) heavy metal music, the best ones to me are ones that do not have scenes from its episodes, something that you wouldn’t dread looking at many times. Another one, which I don’t mind if it’s not used, are the way the text of the credits are displayed being anything other than the generic one. Speaking of generic, I noticed that the animation of the ending of some anime, like Hanasaku Iroha (Spring 2011) and Durarara!! (Winter 2010), seems to have very minimal animation. I’m also not a fan of having new ending song in every episode, though I don’t mind those once-in-a-while things that reflect a sad atmosphere (eg. the death of a major character). As for those that use a song that has been used in several anime, it’s a mixed bag. However, songs like Secret Base: Kimi ga Kureta Mono, is the most often, and the most emotional, one I know of by singers used in Kyou no Go no Ni (Autumn 2008) and Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae wo Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai (Spring 2011).

Kill Me Baby (Spring 2012)

Nowadays, anime having an opening some minutes after it started instead of the very beginning seems to be the norm. From my observations, those that don’t, or always have a flashback, or have something that repeats every time like Yakitate!! Ja-pan (Autumn 2004), generally don’t have a good storyline. On the opposite end, anime that do not have an opening (most commonly the first and last episode), replaced with credits in its place, or have the main episode overlapping with the ending in certain episodes are quite good.

It’s hard for me to decide what is a good anime between a slice-of-life anime with simple design with playful schoolgirls in a school as main characters (eg. Nichijou), or lots of action with serious men and highly detail things (eg. Gundam series). Generally, it’s easy to tell a bad one, and I seem to find a lot of anime with little content in the middle of the series falling into this group. It’s also hard for me to watch one with a good story, but not-so-good in the character design part.

In the past, I used to be able to tell the kind of anime that would be produced just by looking at the name of the animation studio. Before Puella Magi Madoka Magica (Winter 2011), I used to think that animation studio Shaft would be only be producing slapstick-like anime like Sayonara Zetsubou-sensei (Winter 2008). Madoka was a big surprise as they suddenly have moe characters, and a plot that’s a big departure from what they (or those with magical girls) normally have. Actually, not really sudden as they produced Bakemonogatari (Summer 2009) in between: still have elements typical of earlier Shaft anime, but a bit more to the serious side.

Angel Beats (Spring 2010)

Speaking of animation studio, I heard that Angel Beats could have been produced by Kyoto Animation instead of P.A. Works as most of the works written by Jun Maeda (Canon, Air, Clannad) are usually produced by former. The reason possibly being that KyoAni was already busy producing K-On! at production time.

What would the the most ideal anime for me?  Protagonist being a smart girl that should not be ugly or extremely sexy. She is a serious girl who could accurately tell if she’s lied to, which you can’t tell unless you paid attention to her tone of voice. These days, character design seems to be based on that of K-On!. Of course, that won’t happen, would it?

Episodes that takes place at beaches

Having watched several different anime, I’m starting to notice something that has been rather common: a whole episode dedicated to playing by the beach in the summer with a group of people. This theme has been used too much.

So, why the dislike towards it? Here:

  • too common
  • always takes place during the summer vacation
  • a lot of emphasis on the girl’s swimsuit
  • the whole episode (and maybe the ones around it) is focused mainly on it
  • no meaningful storyline development
  • etc.

On top of that, I’m starting to watch more of the more serious ones. Love comedy ones are also fallen out of favor.

>Episodes that takes place at beaches

>

Having watched several different anime, I’m starting to notice something that has been rather common: a whole episode dedicated to playing by the beach in the summer with a group of people. This theme has been used too much.

So, why the dislike towards it? Here:

  • too common
  • always takes place during the summer vacation
  • a lot of emphasis on the girl’s swimsuit
  • the whole episode (and maybe the ones around it) is focused mainly on it
  • no meaningful storyline development
  • etc.

On top of that, I’m starting to watch more of the more serious ones. Love comedy ones are also fallen out of favor.

End Summer 2010 review

Since I wrote the mid-season summer anime review, there has been some changes of opinions of the anime I had reviewed that aired in the Summer season. This includes episodes 13 to 26 of an even earlier Spring anime and Summer anime that still continues on into the Autumn season.

Occult Academy (世紀末オカルト学院)
 For the third straight anime released released under TV Tokyo’s Power of Anime (アニメノチカラ), it still fails to keep my interest despite the nice graphics and original storyline. Maybe it’s the storyline part that is the main reason.

For one thing, it started off in July 1999 as the academy principal’s death and his daughter, Maya, not caring about him even at the funeral until something strange happened. Then a guy from the future (2012) wanting to fix the bad things from his time that started happening in 1999. Apart from the character designs, I decided to tolerate because of what I saw so far was interesting.

Then, things start to go downhill.

It became filled with boring filter episodes, a love story, family problems, going out with friends, and whatever that has nothing to do with the main character or the academy. This is the point around where I dropped. When I took a sneak peak of the second last episode, it made me at a loss of words: two of the secondary characters were hidden good and evil witches, fight each other, and… you get the idea. I stopped watching at that point. Couldn’t stand it.

The other two anime under the Power of Anime are So Ra No Wo To (Winter 2010) and Senko no Night Raid (Spring 2010).


Ms. Okami & 7 friends (オオカミさんと七人の仲間たち)
As mentioned before, this anime has bizarre character designs to the extent to being ugly (though not as ugly as that senior citizen-looking high school girl in a maid-themed autumn anime I watched earlier today) and have useless secondary characters. I don’t get what’s going on other than a so-called bank that has a posh lounge hidden behind the small, poor-looking room. Oh, the ending animation is a pain to watch with that 8-bit music and the curtain repeatedly opening and closing. It’s just summarizes on how awful I find the anime to be, especially when I’m watching K-On!! season 2 ending 2 at the same time too.

Seitokai Yakuindomo (生徒会役員共)
Besides K-On!! and Amagami, This anime is relatively decent enough for me to be able to tolerate during the Summer season. It has somehow kept me away from even thinking of dropping it and wanting for more. In contrast, the other student council I have watched, Seitokai no Ichizon (Autumn 2009) was boring as 85% of the time takes place in the room and lack something to look forward to.

Amagami (アマガミ)
I was just happily watching when suddenly, out of the blue, there is a narrator for Nakata Sae’s arc (episode 9-12) and then mysteriously disappears. What was that about?

Anyways, from what I see featured in the opening, it seems that the better (-looking) girls would be featured from episode 13 with the second half, and a newer, better opening from episode 14. Since I last talked about it, it didn’t follow exactly the pattern I mention then as some started from the present summer instead of Christmas of 2 years ago or things like that. However, the girls do appear in all of the arcs that doesn’t focuses on them, but relatively minor. This anime is still ongoing now.

K-On season 2 (けいおん!!)
This ever-popular anime ended with 26 episodes. The graduation in episode 24 marked the end with the graduation ceremony. It was sad after knowing them for a long time and not seeing them again. Episodes 25 and 26 covers the gap between episode 21 and 23. I was expecting the epilogue and what they are doing outside instead like what was promised in the first episode of the first season (Spring 2009). Maybe we would see it for the OVA later on, but that’s a long time from now.

I find it good that they went into detail of the girls’ daily lives to show a more personal side of them. What is lacking is Tsumugi’s house being featured, as the 4 other main characters had already shown theirs. From the hints of the summer training, and how excited she becomes over seemingly normal things, that’s probably enough to know what she lives in. Anyways, the visual quality, attention to detail, and the opening and ending themes are the things that are usually missing in most anime.


The summer and spring seasons had limited amount of anime worth watching on TV, but among those, they are quite good to watch. Due to work constrains and how late anime are usually aired, I had to record them (which explains the channel logo) and watch them at a later time. Sometimes, almost a week later.

The new autumn anime has just started, and I need to watch a few episodes, and maybe that episode a few times, to get what is going on. This would be enough to see what anime to drop, and what to continue watching. There’s an anime I saw of a boy who is very obsessed of playing visual novel games and then some crazy things happen. I don’t remember what the title is, but it doesn’t give me a good first impressions and not something I would continue with.

I haven’t been doing any MAD on my YouTube channel lately mainly because I’m not good with creating something new, and the copyright take-down crap going on is unmotivated me to do more. The way copyright law is enforced these days are more of not allowing creativity, and only concerned of their target audience, which is made worse by the people who are outside of it having knowing nothing. Any anime by Kadokawa would at least have ads pasted on it (it’s strange that a video footage of students doing the Hare Hare Yukai dance fall into this group too since there’s no footage from the anime and the sound is muffled mixed with background noise), but the worse culprits block/remove the video completely are mainly Aniplex (or any company owned by Sony), TV Tokyo, and quite recently, Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS). You could tell from the credits and the 10-sec sponsor screen after the opening and ending animations. A good example is that you don’t see anime under those titles. Videos blocked/removed means that far fewer people would know about it and popularity would drop sharply once the first TV airing has ended. An example of this is BakaTest (Winter 2010) as, despite being popular when it was aired, seems to be relatively forgotten as compared to an older popular series that did not remove the unofficial videos. These companies see it as a hindrance to making profit, but they are making it worse by letting fewer people know about it and actually killing themselves. Why would a customer support something they know nothing of unless they are involved with it’s production? Previews and low-quality legal online streaming sites (which is not available in all countries for the above reasons) are not enough.

End Summer 2010 review

Since I wrote the mid-season summer anime review, there has been some changes of opinions of the anime I had reviewed that aired in the Summer season. This includes episodes 13 to 26 of an even earlier Spring anime and Summer anime that still continues on into the Autumn season.

Occult Academy (世紀末オカルト学院)
 For the third straight anime released released under TV Tokyo’s Power of Anime (アニメノチカラ), it still fails to keep my interest despite the nice graphics and original storyline. Maybe it’s the storyline part that is the main reason.

For one thing, it started off in July 1999 as the academy principal’s death and his daughter, Maya, not caring about him even at the funeral until something strange happened. Then a guy from the future (2012) wanting to fix the bad things from his time that started happening in 1999. Apart from the character designs, I decided to tolerate because of what I saw so far was interesting.

Then, things start to go downhill.

It became filled with boring filter episodes, a love story, family problems, going out with friends, and whatever that has nothing to do with the main character or the academy. This is the point around where I dropped. When I took a sneak peak of the second last episode, it made me at a loss of words: two of the secondary characters were hidden good and evil witches, fight each other, and… you get the idea. I stopped watching at that point. Couldn’t stand it.

The other two anime under the Power of Anime are So Ra No Wo To (Winter 2010) and Senko no Night Raid (Spring 2010).


Ms. Okami & 7 friends (オオカミさんと七人の仲間たち)
As mentioned before, this anime has bizarre character designs to the extent to being ugly (though not as ugly as that senior citizen-looking high school girl in a maid-themed autumn anime I watched earlier today) and have useless secondary characters. I don’t get what’s going on other than a so-called bank that has a posh lounge hidden behind the small, poor-looking room. Oh, the ending animation is a pain to watch with that 8-bit music and the curtain repeatedly opening and closing. It’s just summarizes on how awful I find the anime to be, especially when I’m watching K-On!! season 2 ending 2 at the same time too.

http://www.youtube.com/v/aHzSbEk56kQ?fs=1&hl=ja_JP

Seitokai Yakuindomo (生徒会役員共)
Besides K-On!! and Amagami, This anime is relatively decent enough for me to be able to tolerate during the Summer season. It has somehow kept me away from even thinking of dropping it and wanting for more. In contrast, the other student council I have watched, Seitokai no Ichizon (Autumn 2009) was boring as 85% of the time takes place in the room and lack something to look forward to.

Amagami (アマガミ)
I was just happily watching when suddenly, out of the blue, there is a narrator for Nakata Sae’s arc (episode 9-12) and then mysteriously disappears. What was that about?

Anyways, from what I see featured in the opening, it seems that the better (-looking) girls would be featured from episode 13 with the second half, and a newer, better opening from episode 14. Since I last talked about it, it didn’t follow exactly the pattern I mention then as some started from the present summer instead of Christmas of 2 years ago or things like that. However, the girls do appear in all of the arcs that doesn’t focuses on them, but relatively minor. This anime is still ongoing now.

K-On season 2 (けいおん!!)
This ever-popular anime ended with 26 episodes. The graduation in episode 24 marked the end with the graduation ceremony. It was sad after knowing them for a long time and not seeing them again. Episodes 25 and 26 covers the gap between episode 21 and 23. I was expecting the epilogue and what they are doing outside instead like what was promised in the first episode of the first season (Spring 2009). Maybe we would see it for the OVA later on, but that’s a long time from now.

I find it good that they went into detail of the girls’ daily lives to show a more personal side of them. What is lacking is Tsumugi’s house being featured, as the 4 other main characters had already shown theirs. From the hints of the summer training, and how excited she becomes over seemingly normal things, that’s probably enough to know what she lives in. Anyways, the visual quality, attention to detail, and the opening and ending themes are the things that are usually missing in most anime.


The summer and spring seasons had limited amount of anime worth watching on TV, but among those, they are quite good to watch. Due to work constrains and how late anime are usually aired, I had to record them (which explains the channel logo) and watch them at a later time. Sometimes, almost a week later.

The new autumn anime has just started, and I need to watch a few episodes, and maybe that episode a few times, to get what is going on. This would be enough to see what anime to drop, and what to continue watching. There’s an anime I saw of a boy who is very obsessed of playing visual novel games and then some crazy things happen. I don’t remember what the title is, but it doesn’t give me a good first impressions and not something I would continue with.

I haven’t been doing any MAD on my YouTube channel lately mainly because I’m not good with creating something new, and the copyright take-down crap going on is unmotivated me to do more. The way copyright law is enforced these days are more of not allowing creativity, and only concerned of their target audience, which is made worse by the people who are outside of it having knowing nothing. Any anime by Kadokawa would at least have ads pasted on it (it’s strange that a video footage of students doing the Hare Hare Yukai dance fall into this group too since there’s no footage from the anime and the sound is muffled mixed with background noise), but the worse culprits block/remove the video completely are mainly Aniplex (or any company owned by Sony), TV Tokyo, and quite recently, Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS). You could tell from the credits and the 10-sec sponsor screen after the opening and ending animations. A good example is that you don’t see anime under those titles. Videos blocked/removed means that far fewer people would know about it and popularity would drop sharply once the first TV airing has ended. An example of this is BakaTest (Winter 2010) as, despite being popular when it was aired, seems to be relatively forgotten as compared to an older popular series that did not remove the unofficial videos. These companies see it as a hindrance to making profit, but they are making it worse by letting fewer people know about it and actually killing themselves. Why would a customer support something they know nothing of unless they are involved with it’s production? Previews and low-quality legal online streaming sites (which is not available in all countries for the above reasons) are not enough.

K-On! Season 2 Episode 24 (Finale)

(Cross-posted from the Japanese version)

Except for Azusa, it’s graduation day for everyone in the Light Music Club.

Yui: “It’s the graduation ceremony isn’t it?”

Girl on the left: “See you later”

It is this day that the third year students making their final departure from the school. Will they see each other again?

These are the seniors’ graduation diplomas, isn’t it? (cries) Please don’t graduate…
Don’t worry, Azu-nyan. I’ll give you a picture of us when we were in our first year.

Hokago (After-school) Teatime’s last music performance in the school’s music room


(For sub-less or closed-captioned Japanese lyrics, refer to the Japanese version)

Azusa is crying.


Although this is the final episode in the K-On series, I don’t want to write about it in detail: it’s too sad to write about. The next two episodes are extras outside the storyline.

K-On! Season 2 Episode 24 (Finale)

(Cross-posted from the Japanese version)

Except for Azusa, it’s graduation day for everyone in the Light Music Club.

Yui: “It’s the graduation ceremony isn’t it?”

Girl on the left: “See you later”

It is this day that the third year students making their final departure from the school. Will they see each other again?

These are the seniors’ graduation diplomas, isn’t it? (cries) Please don’t graduate…
Don’t worry, Azu-nyan. I’ll give you a picture of us when we were in our first year.

Hokago (After-school) Teatime’s last music performance in the school’s music room


(For sub-less or closed-captioned Japanese lyrics, refer to the Japanese version)

Azusa is crying.


Although this is the final episode in the K-On series, I don’t want to write about it in detail: it’s too sad to write about. The next two episodes are extras outside the storyline.