The blog that reviews all anime and the mangas

Monday, September 9, 2013

Makai Ouji Devils and Realist

" Bring two people with totally opposite points of view, throw them in a closed room, and watch them scratch out each others' eyes, this is the best description I could come up with for the anime. And I promise it will get you smiling on occasions, feeling a bit sad on a few others, and laughing hard at 2 am in the morning. "


Introduction:

I've been tired lately of some EPIC yet nerve-wrecking anime ( again ! ), so I decided to start some light anime that will leave me laughing rather than worrying. Apparently, Makai Ouji: Devils and Realist was the cure for my heartache and boredom.  Here is the trailer :3 


Editor’s side note: My heartache is due to my favorite anime taking too long to release new episodes. Ongoing anime are a test of patience if you ask me. On another note, Makai Ouji: Devils and Realist is quite a catch. It is funny, funny, with some good plot, funny, and quite a touch of eccentricity if you ask me although slow paced.
Plot:

William Twining is an aristocrat and has everything handed to him. Although his parents died and his uncle manages his financials, he is the top of his class in one of the most prestigious schools. He is a "perfect" by name, social status, and grades. He is one hell of a realist who only believes in the scientific line of thinking. What William doesn't know is that he is going to be denied from all of the comforts he enjoyed when news reaches him regarding his uncle's bankruptcy due to "Bad Investments".


Random snapshot from the anime, LOOK how promising the LOLs are :3 
Editor’s side note: So, what's so special with Twining? What William does not know is that he is the descendant of Solomon, who according to the story is the man who God bestowed upon him wisdom which is represented by the ring which Solomon wears. He also subjugated 72 demons also knows as the 72 pillars. Yet, what happens when the lord of hell Lucifer falls asleep and hell needs an interim ruler? ( Enters the ELECTOR)

A sample of the demon lords that are shown in the series :3 , and YES this hottie is the lord of FLIES -_- 

When William dashes home to inquire about his unpaid tuition, he is received by his house steward Kevin Cecil who informs him about his uncle's bankruptcy.  Desperate to find a method to pay his tuition, William accidentally enters a secret basement in his house and summons a demon when a drop of blood oozing from his injured hand comes in contact with an old magic circle drawn on the floor.
Kevin the house steward, ummm I shall refrain from commenting and leave the rest up to you :3
Editor’s side note: So up till now, we have a hard headed realist who summoned a demon using a magic circle in his basement who tells him that he is the Elector and has the right to choose hell's interim ruler! So how will William react ?

Characters:

1- William Twining
An aristocrat who has gone bankrupt. He is also Solomon's descendant, and a hell of a realist. Although, some of the 72 pillars approach him and try to Persuade him to elect them as the interim ruler, William denies each and every single one of them. He, not only denies their requests, but also their existence/nature as well as his responsibility towards them. He claims that they are all made out of atoms and he is not responsible in any way to deal with hell and its problems, that is if it exists to begin with.

On several occasions William will show his true soft nature especially towards his friend and house steward Kevin. I would like to say that his attitude issues are due to his beliefs although I have a feeling Dantalion will patch things up :P !

William and his friend Issac :3 This was one weird moment ! 
Editor’s side note: Twining's attitude sometimes pisses me off. He is proud on several occasions and denies Dantalion who appears to have made quite a connection with Solomon in the past. My brother says William's initial attitude is more annoying than Arthur Auguste Angel's from Ao No Exorcist.
 Arthur Auguste Angel from Ao No Exorcist, PLAIN annoyance on two feet
2- Dantalion:
He is one of Solomon's 72 pillars and also a Nephilim ( I will let you hit your head on the wall while trying to find a definition for Nephilim :3 ). He is the demon who was summoned in William's basement. He is protective of the initial, although William denies his existence and "badmouths" him on several occasions. He has a major connection with Solomon and wonders why William forgot about him (while William has flashbacks regarding the other demons). 

Dantalion is also one of Lucifer's favorites and is quite POWERFUL ! But why is he protective of William and throws his life to protect an Elector who does not even acknowledge his existence ? ( ^_^ ) NYA-nya !?

Dantalion is a very sweet demon if you ask me !
Editor’s side note: Dantalion's voice actor was a shock. I knew I heard that voice somewhere, yet I never knew this deep voice was the same as Misaki Ayuzuwa from Kaichou wa Maid sama as well as Ittoki Otoya from Uta-no Prince Sama and Inuta Kobungo from Hakkenden Touhou Hakken Ibun!
 3-Sitori 
He is also a candidate to replace Lucifer as the latter is in deep sleep. He appears to be a fallen angel as seen in one of Solomon's memories. Sitori is very refined, loves eating biscuits and quite powerful. He reigns over 60 armies of hell and is one of Solomon's pillars.


Editor’s side note: During his first appearance I had one reaction: "NOT sure if MALE OR FEMALE :P " Rest assured, he is a male !
 4- Gilles de Rais 
I do not know why but this DUDE (HE IS A DUDE ) pisses me off. I am not sure if he is a comic relief but he really needs some help. He is quite strong, battles Dantalion in the first episode if I am not mistaken and it is revealed that he is a man who died 400 years ago and became a Nephilim serving under the Great Demon Duke Baalberith. He once was in love with some historical character that we KNOW :3 !



Editor’s side note: During episode 7 mom walks into the room. I hit the pause button and the video stops at this scene. She inquires about the current scene and I tell her some stuff are better left unexplained .

There are other characters, whom I shall refrain from discussing in order not to ruin the anime for you :3
 I love your red hair dude, but hmmmm !
 I fell in love with his voice, he has the same voice actor for shirou from Ao No Exorcist and Hannes-san fron Attack on Titan

 Astaroth-sama quite a character. She reminds me of Youruichi from Bleach !
Camio, he is one of my favorites, pretty refined with a delicate human nature !

Music:


The intro was not bad, quite catchy but not very memorable ( in my opinion ) ! I enjoyed the closing more, and I like the vocals and lyrics :3  :3

Comments:

- I enjoyed the anime. It was a good change of genres, quite funny, and yet has an interesting plot of its own.
- I love how the battle between heaven and hell develops.
- Themes of friendship, betrayal, humans vs demons vs hell are raised and you can't help but love the demons in the series.
- One of my favorite quotes relates to how humans are more cruel that the darkest demons.

Although many might down-rate it, according to the atmosphere and the nature/genre of the anime as well as my psychological state while watching it, it would give it an 8 or an 8.5! Many would argue that it does NOT rival other 8 or 9 rated anime, but within its genre I would say it did a great job!












Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Kamisama Hajimemashita

Introduction:

I was listening to "Just Tonight" by The Pretty Reckless and somehow it reminded me of a task that has been on my laptop's sticky notes for quite a while: "Read Kamisama Hajimemashita's 100th manga issue". So, instead of searching for the translated manga issue, I decided to write a review for the anime hoping it would reignite my passion for the manga (it never died if you ask me) and refresh my memory regarding certain events.
Editor’s side note: Although this anime may look like an underdeveloped one , there is more than meets the eye. I also have a thing for bad-ass demons that have animal ears and tails ( call me a creep but the anime had quite a nice flavor especially when I was quite stressed due to my exams).
So what is Kamisama Hajimemashita about and what sets it apart from other anime that fall under "shoujo, slice of life, and mystery"? Let us take the first step and introduce the plot and hopefully things will interest you and get you watching the anime or even reading the manga which is much more developed and intriguing!


1- Plot: ( YOU by The Pretty Reckless is playing in the background which fits perfectly :P )

Momozono Nanami is a regular highschool girl until she is evicted from her house thanks to her reckless father who left her with debts and made his escape just before the debt-collectors claimed their rights. ( Quite a role model for a father if you ask me :P ! )


We are presented with Nanami sitting on a lonely park bench when she hears a man's voice requesting "HELP". Nanami sees a full grown man on a tree being harrassed by a dog. Nanami comes to his aid and chases the dog away.
Editor’s side note: This was quite a hilarious start if you ask me. Seeing the man on the tree, and having a young school girl chase the dog away ( by simply shaking her foot at it) made my mother laugh as she, my older sister and I rewatched the anime.
Mikage thanks the young girl for her help and inquires about her current state. Nanami retells how she has no home to return to and how her father left her to fend on her own as he made his escape. As a result, Mikage draws Nanami a map and tells her she can have his home, after all, he has been absent for 20 years and "TOMOE" would knock his teeth off if he sees him. Mikage kisses Nanami's forehead and tells her to make his home her own.

    Enter Tomoe :3 ! <3
Editor’s side note: If I were Nanami and a strange man kissed my forehead or even approached me, I would dropkick him so help me GOD! ( I just wanted to point that out :P .)

There is no doubt that for every "golden deal" there is a catch, for there is no such thing as a "free lunch"! Apparently our young hero walked into what she calls an AYAKASHI haunted house. As she enters she is attacked by an angry fox familiar ( Tomoe, who is quite a hottie with epic fox ears and tail ). The latter tries to rip her throat out, only to stop at a split of a second pointing out that the girl is not MIKAGE. At that moment, two shrine servants, Onikiri and Kotetsu, state that she has Mikage's seal which deems her the deity of the shrine.


Onikiri and Kotetsu being harassed by the ladies who serve Tomoe wine :3
As a diety and the official inheritor of Mikage, Nanami has to attend to several tasks. Things start to hit a wild turn when several tests of faith, will and power are thrown at her. Will Nanami rise to the occasion  or give up to her mere mundane nature? More importantly what does Nanami have to do to make Tomoe acknowledge her? Will she succeed in fulfilling her role as a diety of a shrine when her weak state and mundane nature constrain her from seeing "deity-fit tasks" to their proper ends?

Nanami sealing the familiar contract with Tomoe ( nyahahahahahah :3 )

2- Characters: (Need you Now by Lady Antebellum is playing which is quite true because I miss Tomoe)
Other than Nanami, we have Tomoe as a lead character. He is a fox demond and Mikage's familiar serving as the shrine's guardian. Other than the shrine tasks, he also writes down the believer's prayers which he has kept in journals that are neatly saved awaiting Mikage's return. In the past, Tomoe was quite a demon who would wreck havoc, massacre humans, and hunt just for the pleasure and to satisfy his blood thirst. This is revealed in the manga in more details, the latter lays the foundation for the coming arcs relating to his past and how it links to Nanami's. ( It was a great read discovering Tomoe's past and secrets; the manga left me eager and demanding ).



Kurama Shinjirou is a prominent pop-idol who is supposedly a fallen angle from hell ( his stage image :P ) when in fact he is a Tengu who descended the mountain 16 years ago. He picks on Nanami on the first day causing her to cry. Later on, when he discovers her deity nature, he tries to devour her, to which Tomoe comes to the rescue and injures Kurama with his fox fire after turning the latter into an ostrich. After that encounter, Kurama befriends Nanami and helps her out on several occasions including the event when Tomoe is shrunken into chibi/baby form and left defenseless.


There is also Mizuki who was the familiar of a different shrine deity who died and her shrine was submerged under water. He is one hell of a funny character ( wait until he starts playing the flute). Also, Mizuki has white hair and green eyes and usually rides on a snake and makes divine wine!



3-Music:
The into and closing songs is quite addicting. My mother ended up happily humming them all day!  I wouldn't blame her for the tune is quite catch and the rhyme is a memorable one. The original soundtracks are quite.




COMMENTS:

I loved the anime; it was warm, mysterious, and quite relaxing. The story develops more and takes some good twists and turns both in the anime and more evidently in the manga. I bet manga issue 100 is going to be a total mind-blower. Keep in mind, that Tomoe has a very dark past and you will not be let into that past except by looking at the hairpin shown in the anime. The anime does not show anything regarding his past, yet , I hope there is a season 2 since  the manga develops the plot further and will leave you with an open jaw on several occasions. 


There is beauty in the anime/manga's simplicity, and a touch of eccentricity that sets it apart. I recommend it to you all give it a 9/10 compared to its fellow anime that fall under the same sub-genre.

I hope you enjoyed the review and would give the anime a try :3 ! I am off to read manga issue #100 !



Thursday, August 29, 2013

Natsume Yuujinchou [ A gem of warmth ]

Simplicity, mixed with warmth, with a tint of darkness that surrounds creatures of the dark, yet, all is engulfed in a set of what we call mere mundane emotions.
Today we present you with Natsume Yuujinchou a heartwarming anime that touches on topics that appear simple at the first glance but have rather intricate and deeper meanings when inspected carefully. Natsume Yuujinchou is a mere high school boy who can see yokai.

Been there, done that. Not interested!” Those might be the first thoughts that cross your mind. 

Well trust me on this one, if you discard the anime from just reading my first lines, then you are letting go of one of the most simple, beautiful and moving anime you will ever lay your eyes upon.

PRESS PLAY :3 !



So let me ask you this and I hope you answer me truthfully:
Have you ever been so tired  that you wanted to turn your laptop on and watch a simple heartwarming anime that is not too intricate with its plot to leave you with a headache like the BIG ANIME, yet has at the same time depth, heartwarming feeling, and character development that will not leave you agitated ?

Well, if “YES” is your answer then you can carry one reading. If “NO” is your answer then you can ALSO carry on reading :3 !

"Thank you... for not growing to hate humans."


        Plot: Natsume Yuujinchou is a very plain anime at first sight, that tells how one boy gets his hands on his late grandmother’s Book of Friends and releases a demon called Madara from his seal who later becomes his bodyguard only until Natsume dies; the latter promises to hand him The Book of Friends as a price.

The Book of Friends contains the name of yokai whom his grandmother defeated in the past which makes the demons indebted to Reiko and hence, Natsume the owner of the book.


       Themes:
So what is so amazing about this anime? The anime is 13 episodes (season 1) , which tells several encounters with major Yokai. Some are trying to find their names, yet others have ripped the veil that separates humans from yokai and are seeking to have their wishes granted.From love, to simply the desire of not being forgotten to various other themes that are simple, yet, humane in nature, the anime will tackle.

Although many might underestimate it, the loneliness, the beauty of friendship, the forbidden love between humans and Yokai, the depleting feeling of anger, sorrow, loss, and more importantly the feeling of isolation are only some of the themes weaved into such a so-called plain anime.


Who would have thought that someone can actually present Yokai in a very "human" and fragile nature? Apparently, the mangaka and the anime succeeded in doing that.


 Characters:
Other than Madara ( who sometimes takes the form of a cat ) and Natsume there are several characters whom we encounter as the episodes roll. I will refrain from delving into their pasts, fears, and simple desires. Yet, although some get only an episode to retell their story, the latter can be quite deep on several occasions leaving you speechless. One remarkable encounter (season one) is when deities lose all their followers. This makes you wonder what really happens to them as people stop believing.
    Natsume and Madra in different forms! [ Kawaii Neko-chan is sometimes called Nyanko-sensei :P ]

Editor’s side note: To be honest some episodes left me speechless, others left me jumping out of satisfaction, peace and warmth, yet, some were quite sad that made me tear up. YET, I assure you I did not cry. To me it was more moving than Clannad, Clannad After Story, or even Angel Beats. [ GO figure! In addition, the last three anime stated did not even move me :P ]

Music: 
Remarkable, lovable, and very touching at times ! Check out the lyrics when you get some free time ~!


Final Comments: I love the anime, and season 2 and 3 are currently torrenting. The music leaves me speechless, the anime leaves me wanting and yearning, more like extending my hand into the characters' hearts and wanting a place between them, and by the end of the day I am left with the resonating warmth that the anime leaves behind. It is and will always be memorable and warm!


It is a 10 for me because it is such an undiscovered yet valuable gem to those who know that beauty is not something that is discovered by the eyes yet by the heart <3 !


Hakkenden Touhou Hakken Ibun

"Mystery mixed with a tint of darkness, add to it a childish flavor, then cover it with a glaze of pasts that go way back to the existing characters, and make the characters outperform their current selves, is the most vague description I could come up with for the anime."


Introduction:

                Ladies, if you are searching for an anime that will make you swoon and go head over heels over several characters then this is your ultimate call. YES, you may squeal, swoon, and drooling is also an option. There is no need to be shy, I myself did all that while watching the anime ( sis called me a creep but well shikata ga nai!). Gentlemen, if you are searching for an anime with some hot female characters, then you are LUCKY! This anime has lots of remarkable women in it.

                Now that I have your attention, let me introduce you to what I consider one of 2013’s best anime (aside from “Attack on Titan” which I have to see once I am done downloading it and Kamisama no Inai Nichiyoubi). “Hakkenden Touhou Hakken Ibun” also known as “The Eight Dogs of the East” is a great anime with lots of hot characters. 
           Yet, what makes me consider this anime an underrated anime which deserves more attention and admiration is NOT its hot characters, epic original soundtracks, but its well-formed and intricate plot. The factors mentioned above all contribute to this masterpiece, yet the corner-stone or the icing and glaze to this beautiful cake is the plot. 

~Let our little journey begin!~

     From left to right: Inukawa Sousuke, Inuta Kobungo, Inukai Genpachi, Inusaka Keno, Kokonoe.

1-      Plot:
Hakkenden Touhou Hakken Ibun starts with strong and appealing scene where our main characters (Inukawa Sousuke and Inuzuka Shino) are bloodied and at the brick of death. Our third character Hamaji enters crying over her friends’ bodies asking, yet, more like demanding not to be left behind.

Editor’s side note: To be honest, I downloaded the anime because the story looked nice and the characters looked hot, yet after watching the first scene I got hooked by the ears , if that is even possible.


Hamaji’s words spoken to Shino who appears in this picture somehow touched a deep part of my soul. I am not sure if it were her crying or simply desire not to be left behind (xD)

              Bloodied, Shino the main and most intriguing character states that just when he finally found a family of his own, everything was ripped away from him (referring to Sousuke, Hamaji, and the family dog Yoshiro). With everything burning to ash, a young and handsome man presents Shino with a katana offering him a choice: either to watch his life wither or accept to harbor a monster (Murasame the mysterious demon/deity/entity?) and gain immortality.

As a result, five years after the destruction of their village, we are presented with older Sousuke, Hamaji, and young Shino who have taken refuge in a church at a close village. Later, they receive a summoning letter from the Central Church. Shino meets again the young man of five years ago who states that Shino has to collect 8 mysterious beads and their respective owners.

Editor’s side note: By now you would be wondering what Murasame is. He is a living sword spirit that takes the form of a crow. I am not saying more about Murasame, but he is as cool as heck. He might be mistaken as a comic relief, but his existence and role are far more intricate and significant. 
     2- The bead holders:

             First the bead is a marble looking object that has one word written on it. There are 8 of these including Shino’s and Sousuke’s and apparently the holders’ pasts connect to an ancient period of time when demons and humans clashed. I shall refrain from revealing more concerning the bead holders to avoid any spoilers and will leave the viewer to connect the dots and find how 8 strangers cross paths in the present which have had already aligned way back in the past. On another note, all bead holders are male hotties with characters that make them quite memorable, pasts that vary ,yet have a tint of darkness, and desires that unfold as the story goes on.

3-    Characters:
             While listening to InuYasha’s “Sango To Miroku” original soundtrack I have decided to drop some of the characters in order not to ruin for you season one. Although that might leave you in the dark, including some characters will only render the plot regular and quite passive. Hence, I decided to allocate the characters in three categories: the bead holders, the four sacred Beast wielders/houses and others.


3.1 The bead holders: There are 8 bead holders with 5 common traits including the ownership of their respective beads. At this period of time, I will refrain from pointing out the points of similarity between all 8 characters ( Oh and being a “hottie with a cute body” is not one of those 5 traits although it should be :P ).


3.1.1 Shino Inuzuka: The first thing that took me aback was the voice. I remember screaming Natsuuuuuu ( Yes, Shino and Natsu from fairy tail have the same voice actor). Also, his olive-green eyes are quite intriguing. Although Shino looks like a 13 year old and occasionally acts like a brat, he is actually 18 years old stuck in the form of a 13 year old due to Murasame’s curse. You should keep in mind that in all cases of immortality, their is a price to be paid and in Shino's case it is quite expensive.

His character is that who cares for others especially Sousuke and Hamaji. Although harboring a “monster” within him, Shino appears to be close to Murasame which is evident through their quarrels over food and especially meat. He is also capable of utilizing Murasame’s katana form to both drive away and slay demons who tend to endanger those who the earlier cares about. Shino has a great fear that is the result of harboring Murasame, yet, I am not revealing that as it is nice to discover on your own. His character evolves from the bratty Shino you meet at the early episodes to quite an astounding shroud yet caring character who would go lengths to protect those he cares about.
Wait until you see Shino's OTHER form !


3.1.2 Sosuke Inukawa is a true gentleman with short hair and blue eyes. His sincerity was one of the great points at the beginning of the story. He looks out for Shino as both a brother and parent and would walk miles to guarantee his safety. Although both Shino and Sousuke barely survived the incident at their village, Sousuke as a result is able to shape shift into a dog form which is that of their old dog Yoshiro (why and how come is left for the viewer to uncover :3 ).
He is a mature character that has a dark past that haunts him starting season 1 and is more prominent during season2. I do not intend to spoil, yet there is a price for everything and I hope this anime does not get me crying at the end!


3.1.3 Genpachi Inukai is introduced in the second episode as a prisoner of some twisted monk shrine. He is the captain of the Imperial Military Police. No need to say more, as episode two revels more about Genpachi and Kobungo’s past, yet one thing to keep in mind is that those two are the demons of lightening and wind respectively. Genpachi shows romantic interest in Shino on several occasions when he mistakes him for a woman. Also, Genpachi’s past is quite sad, being a soldier, having his squad wiped out, among other reasons that remain to haunt him until the present time.


Editor’s side note: I always had a thing for anime characters in uniforms, and looking at Genpachi I can’t help but swoon. His character is one that is well mature; his sense of responsibility and gratitude are remarkable. I find him pretty smart, attractive, and dependable.


3.1.4 Kobungo Inuta is shown at the beginning of episode two to be searching for his brother “Genpachi” who has been missing for over a week. Although those two are not related by blood, Kobungo has served as a foot soldier under Genpachi’s command at some point in the past. Those two are close, and Kobungo is quite a character that clashes with Genpachi’s serious hot soldier attitude. The earlier is quite funny, hardworking, caring, and protective of Genpachi who was suicidal after some incident that concerns the Northern Village. ( NO more spoilers :P )



3.1.5 Keno Inusaka is a hottie that reminds me of Shi Ryuki from Saiunkoku Monogatari. The first time I laid my eyes on him I knew I was in love (AGAIN)! Keno is a dancer and performer. He, like all the bead holders has an interesting past of his own. It seems that Keno had his heart carved out of his chest when a man killed his family and stole everything he held dear. Although he lost his heart Keno did not die and was able to cut his enemy in the face which blinded his left eye. The latter character’s identity will leave your jaw open so I will leave that to the viewer to discover on his own. On a second note, although Keno looks like a girl ( he is cute enough to be mistaken for a woman), he is quite a swordsman, which is revealed when he and Shino clash swords. It was quite an intense scene if you ask me.




3.1.6 Dosetsu Inuyama : Shown in Season 2

3.1.7 Daikaku Inumura : Shown in Season 2 

3.1.8 @.@ ?

3.2 The Four Sacred Beast Houses/wielders:

I won't elaborate on those four, but one Rio, Kaname and Nachi are quite hot ( that put aside, they play some important role linking the 8 bead holders to their past specifically Satomi Rio). They are also the hosts chosen by 4sacred beasts that are considered equivalent to gods. I shall not ruin for you the sacred beats' names or nature :P Ohh Yatsufsa-san is kawaaiii and Kaede is WELL nyan nyan :3 :P 
3.2.1 Rio Satomi  ^_^
3.2.2 Kaname Osaki 
3.2.3 Ayane Mizuki         
3.2.4 Nachi Hinozuka

3.3 Others
Hamaji: She is Shino and Sousuke’s adoptive sister. She is kidnapped in episode one which forces Shino and Sousuke to answer the church's summoning.

4- Music:
An honest piece of advice, DO NOT skip the intro. The lyrics tell exactly the story from Shino and Sousuke’s perspective. I enjoyed listening to the short version as well as reading the lyrics while humming along. ( I try not to sing along since I have epic singing skills :/ )
On another note, the Original Soundtracks within the anime are quite interesting and memorable. The anime also includes some insert songs. Another piece of advice, do read them carefully and try to interpret them as they contain major spoilers. I would love to have you listen to the song sung by "umm the guardian" { let us keep it at this level of vagueness} but making you listen to it will ruin the nature of both Shino and Sousuke :3 ! 

Themes:

Mystery mixed with a tint of darkness, add to it a childish flavor, then cover it with a glaze of pasts that go way back to the existing characters, and make the characters outperform their current selves, is the most vague description I could come up with for the anime. Yes, there is a good pinch of sadness, darkness and despair in the anime that will sometimes leave you heavy hearted or with an open jaw. ( episodes 10-12 from season 1 and episode 8 from season 2 were quite a shocker. In my case, Episode 8 left me speechless at 6am in the morning for around 3 minutes until the closing song finished. and trust me I couldn't sleep easily that morning! ).



Comments and Thoughts:
 - Always keep in mind that immortality has a price and for our young characters it is a HUGE price/debt that has to be paid.
- The bead holders share a past and this is related to the prologue that shows the Fusehime and the 8 warriors. Although both season one and 2 ( which is still ongoing ) does reveal much, I have a feeling it will be an epic showdown at the end of season 2.
- I enjoyed the characters' growth, the animation, the Osts, and the simplicity and perfection of the storyline.
- Remember what might look like random occurrences and meetings actually build the stage for the bigger plot that includes all characters.

Scoring:
All in all I would give season one an 8 to an 8.5 and season 2 a tentative 9 ( we still need to see how season two will resolve the plot as it is still ongoing). 

I rewatched season 1 with my brother while following up season 2 and made lots of conclusions after connecting both seasons. The anime has an essence of its own and a beauty that not many will admire if they do not keep an open mind.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

My thoughts on: Rebuild of Evangelion 3.33 You can (not) redo

This time instead of reviewing I'll just write my thoughts on the movie Evangelion 3.0
I know lots of you didn't watch it yet so I'll make this short enough to sum it up in 2 images with a minor spoiler (nothing big, it won't ruin the movie)

Here is the first one 


This is pretty much how things happened at the producing studios (Khara).

And next one is: 


Ok that's it for today stay tuned and subscribe for more anime reviews!







Friday, May 3, 2013

Anime Review: Shinsekai Yori

Yeah I was pretty busy these days sorry but I promise to try and write more often.... GOMEN NASAI!!!!
Anyway this time I will be reviewing an anime that deserve much more attention and was dropped by many because they failed to understand the real message behind this anime.


Everything in life is covered in mystery. Do you choose to live in blissful ignorance, or do you make a difference against the harsh realities?



Before I begin you should please take note that if you came here expecting a funny and positive anime leave. Shinsekai Yori is not a light watch, it requires you to always analyze the situation, the concept and ideas being discussed to enjoy the serie to its fullest. It also provides you with experience.
This review will be spoiler free, read without hesitation.

With this being said, on with the story.

Story:

The first scene takes place in the modern days with people exploding and dying for some unknown reason.

A thousand years later, the world is ruled by humans with psychic power called Cantus which can make the impossible possible. In this new world, Man has neither need nor want for technology and reigns supreme over the New World's indigenous species called Bakenezumi (Queerats) and other new organisms we come across as the story unfolds. All seems well and peaceful in the Utopia man has created for itself, however Man's evolution came at a price and the New World's mysterious history is written in blood and hidden in secrecy.

The story follows the steps of Saki Watanabe and her friend, Asahina Satoru, Ito Mamoru, Akizuki Maria and Aonuma Shun, at the Sage academy where they are known as group one and learn to control and harness their Cantus. 
From left to right: Shun, Satoru, Saki, Maria and Mamoru

Despite the dark, foreboding tone set from the beginning, it's not until the group uncovers a secret on their school trip that everything starts to go dreadfully wrong for them. Disappearances, assassinations, and invincible beasts aptly called 'Fiends' are but a handful of the mysteries revealed to Saki and her friends. Society is evidently not the utopia that it seems.

There are 2 time skip in the story and all of them will leave you like "what the hell? Why are you doing this you know it's wrong"  but we later discover that everything has an explanation.

The story also treats lots of subject; I will discuss a few here:
As if to defy the conventions of mainstream anime, sexuality plays an important role in the story. The main characters are not innocent and devoid of sexual feelings, even despite their young age in the first two arcs. Much like us, they fall in love, experiment and desire to act out on their feelings. They are not restrained by otaku concepts such as 'purity', and this is an immense benefit given the mature tone of the series. One further thing to note is that they do not only express romantic and sexual desires towards the opposite sex  but towards the same sex as well.


This created so much controversy, I wonder why... Even if the viewer finds bisexual interactions to be uncomfortable, there is scarcely a scene that displays such behavior in the first place. These relationships are not used for superficial shounen-ai or shoujo-ai appeal, but are instead there to reflect the characters maturing in a society unconstrained by social stigma.





Wow if I'm going to talk about every aspect of the story I'd better make a Wiki page... I guess this is enough story wise. 

Characters:

There are very good characters but not much detail or development were given to them, aside from maybe Saki. Saki, the main lead and the narrator, serves as a sort of proxy for the viewer so I will focus mainly on her.
Saki is a calm, smart person who always know how to maintain her cool even when facing danger or learning shocking things (like how their society came to existence). She cares deeply for her friends and refuses to abandon them. She is also very stubborn.

 Interestingly enough, most of the other main characters, aside from Satoru, are mostly used to reveal some secret of the world. The side characters are mostly people presented to give the viewer some much needed info.


Sound:

The music is mostly composed of haunting choirs melodies, percussion and ambient noise which serve to "heighten" the tension. There is no opening, just 2 ending theme. 
Ending 1

Also there are a lot of OST that really stand out. Here are some of them


Also there is this one soundtrack that some of you might recognize, it is called New World by Antonin Dvorak! It is really a relaxing soundtrack and I invite each and every one of you to listen to it! 





Animation and art:



The art is somewhat unusual but fitting for an unusual story, more so than any other art style I can think of. Though not much attention is given to detail as far as facial characteristics go, it beautifully depicts the scenery and maintains an overall cleanliness to it anyone ought to be able to appreciate. Truly, it is beyond my ability to describe the fascinating world of Shinsekai yori but I would wager it is unlike anything you have likely seen; before. 


A1 Pictures has done this series justice in its world building, using just the right colors and shading to create a perfect blend that is both visually pleasing for the average viewer and stays true to the story's setting. The studio has done an above average job the majority of the time with the animation, slipping up only occasionally and consistently producing quality episodes. It is worth nothing that there are some scenes - quite a few actually, that are absolutely breathtaking in their beauty.


 And of course this is only augmented by the angelic scores that play at just the right time, at just the right pitch to deliver a powerful trifecta performance of story, art and sound in an astonishing meld.





One of the strongest aspects of Shinsekai Yori is its atmosphere. Throughout every episode exists an overbearing sense of dread and melancholy: the feeling that something very bad is about to happen, and indeed it often does. The pacing is also very much on the slow side, with several expository episodes before the story finally takes off, but once it does it becomes very difficult to stop watching.


Shinsekai Yori is a macabre, sometimes uncomfortable story that will succeed in immersing you in its dark atmosphere. There's nothing else quite like it out there, which makes it an especially enticing experience. 




Difference with the Manga and the novel:

Didn't read the novel but the mangas is another story. What I mean is that it is very close to the anime but with some difference.... Also it contains lots of yuri (No I am not making that joke)

Conclusion:

Overall, Shinsekai Yori is an excellent anime. It’s a chilling tale that will leave you impressed long after you've finished it. It slow paced and subtle story actually end up working in the anime’s favor. It’s detailed and intricate story as well as its themes will leave the viewer immensely satisfied in the end. Some of the best kinds of stories are the one that make you feel emotion, and boy will this anime invoke plenty of that. It’s a spectacular show that shouldn't be missed by anyone. 


Final Grade: 9.8/10 Must Watch