DocHaus (Level 18)

It's no use, I'll have to use...THAT!
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Hey guys, bet you didn't notice, but a sorta-new episode of Durarara!! has appeared on Crunchyroll for free! It's a DVD-only side story that features red bags, Celty's Greatest Fear, Japanese VAs speaking decent English, and a cameo by two of the most loveable characters ever from a similar story. Here's a hint for that last one. 

What are you folks waiting for? Go watch this now...unless you live outside America, then you'll have to find another way or wait for the DVD.
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I said I would try to make this thing biweekly, so I guess now's as good a time as any to make this post. So here it is, whether you be a mod or plain ol' user who wants to be part of a podcast, either send me a PM or reply in this thread to show your interest.
The tentative title of the next show is "My Prejudice Trumps Your Observation." In this show, along with the usual slate of shows that will have (hopefully) premiered by the time next weekend rolls around, we're going to try and broaden our horizons by talking about things that everyone has already heard. Here's a draft of the outline for the next show:
  • Intros and shout-outs
  • Rundown of the week's shows (and any more goodbyes to the last season if we have time)
  • Is it possible for an anime to become a good live-action movie now? (or, "Cowboy Bebop is dead, long live...Voltron?")
  • Old vs. New Dante and why people will still play the new DMC anyway (or, "vidya games moment")
  • [Some other newsworthy or controversial topic]
  • Final thoughts
 Keep in mind this is subject to change, but we're going to try and follow this outline loosely because while this podcast is not going to be super-serious, at the same time I don't want everyone to just ramble on about pointless stuff for an hour. You can do that on your own time.
Anyways, we're looking for a few good people who are willing to show up on the morning of Sunday Oct 3, at about 10 AM EST, to rap about animu-related things for free on the internets. You need a copy of Skype, Audacity, a microphone, and to be available for at least an hour or so. After that, we can (hopefully) work out the kinks before and after the show. Just as before, we will stick around for a few minutes to help with technical problems, but once we start recording you will not be able to jump in, so if you do want to join in the recording you had best be on time. There will be no further warnings about this.
So on that note, hope you're willing to hop on board. Or if you've already done this, welcome back.
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How do I describe it? As I said in my status, it's like the Powerpuff Girls grew up and had illegitimate children with Samurai Jack.
  I don't know what else to say other than "watch this now."
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Yes, I know, I'm a damn hypocrite for saying that this was going to be full of fanservice and I probably wouldn't watch it until I did.
["dammit, why can't I hide my wiki sub history?"]
Having said that, I found this episode of the show to be rather...predictable I guess. You have your exposed (censorsed) breasts, your anime chicks with large weapons, your death threats, implausible fencing powers, and the leading dude who will probably find himself in the center of a harem later on whether he wants it or not. This show appears to be mashing up the basic elements of Ikkitousen and Queen's Blade: The girls are all surprisingly violent and/or perverted, they seem to be reincarnations of famous Japanese samurai, and the whole show is basically created to sell figures and art books featuring them.
Here's a quick recap of the story: It is set in an alternative version of Japan where they were able to resist foreign influence because the Samurai Girls [dun-dun-dunnnnn] destroyed any foreign ship or plane that tried to force its way into the country. At least that's what I gleaned from the opening cutscene as it seemes fighter/bombers are made out of paper mache packed with unstable nitroglycerine in this alternate universe. As a result, Japan somehow exists as a mishmash of newfangled technology and old-timey systems of honor and respect. It's a crappy setup, but then I remember that this show has been created to sell a toyline, and the story comes second.
So there's a guy named Muneakira Yagyu who gets off a train and walks to a dojo to enter into some academy. He ends up running into a large breasted girl and a loli-fied version of Sanada Yukimura (compare this to the Samurai Warriors version) voiced by none other than Rie Kugumiya. From there, he finds out that he might have accidentally fallen in with the designated Bad Guys (girls?) of the story as a team of ninja (kunoichi?) led by the meido-fied Hattori Hanzo jump in and fight them, but our protagonist and the two samurai girls escape. 
This must be causing Hattori Hanzo's bones to shift uncomfortably in their grave: a legendary swordsman, ninja and ultimate badass turned into a submissive battle maid who literally bows at the feet of the reincarnation of Sen Tokugawa for a purpose too risque to say in public. But as the meido-fied Hanzo leaves to try capturing the three warriors again, Tokugawa shows that she has the hots for the guy she's ordering to be captured without realizing it. Oops.
So sometime later a naked redheaded girl pops up out of nowhere and ends up inadvertently saving our trio, and reveals herself (hah!) to be the incarnation of another famous swordsman: Jubei Yagyu, possibly related to Muneakira. Then the episode ends before we can see any real fighting between the Samurai Girls, and before Muneakira reveals his real name (I had to acquire that info from the internet, so it may change later). And no, slicing a fighter/bomber made of paper mache does not count. 
Yeah, it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, but it wasn't that good either. The storyline was mediocre. The animation was actually interesting but I hated how the animator felt the need to spill black ink on the page every so often, even in parts that didn't have to be censored to protect our children's eyes from seeing a bare breast. It was edgy and new the first ten times, but soon it gets old. As for the cast, Rie Kugumiya gets her usual tsundere role, the voice of Holo is slated to play the gender-swapped reincarnation of a Musketeer, and possible insane person Yuu Kobayashi (last seen voicing a pedophile), apparently is lending her voice to the large-breasted reincarnation of Goto Matabei. The lead guy is voiced by the guy behind Makoto from School Days, but his confident tone sounded off-key in this role.
All in all, I might watch it for a couple more episodes, but the story is not enough to keep me entertained, and the fanservice is a bit lackluster as well compared to a few other series. They should stop trying to split the difference, because that's what makes the show less watchable as time goes on. Hopefully the animator will stop spilling black ink over the frames of animation.
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For those of you who have or know someone who happens to have this channel on their cable/satellite/FiOS box it seems the FUNimation channel is revamping their usual lineup to include some new shows and a newish look starting August 30 (tomorrow from date of writing). So those who want to see English-dubbed anime on their TV (who haven't already found it on Hulu or other sites) will now have some more shows to see than endless reruns of Solty Rei or Ouran Host Club.
Among the new shows being broadcast: 
Axis Powers Hetalia
D.Gray Man
Darker Than Black
Devil May Cry 
Samurai 7
Soul Eater
Slayers Revolution/ Evolution-R
So yeah...those who want another option to legally watch the dubs of these series without paying extra, there ya go.
Did I just give them free advertising? Fuck. I guess I could also add here that there are a few series in that list that I wouldn't touch with a long stick, but I'll let you figure out which ones they are.
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