This was a disappointing Ubel Blatt chapter, the first in quite a long while; which is quite surprising, because where the chapter failed wasn’t the plot per say but the art, which somewhat floundered.
I really don’t have that much to say about chapter 121; following the advent of the order of Gungnir last month, mayhem predictably ensued.
As with everything related to the so called King Glenn, they tapped into psychopathy in trying to brutally murder everyone that they perceived irrelevant to Glenn’s cause.
Poor men and women could only sit back and watch as Brank Fan and Gedouza began cutting through flesh and bone with their new found strength, overwhelming even Rosen’s sword skills and the reputation of his knights.
Interesting i guess, but we expected this, Rosen finding himself face down in front of the very power of his former master, which he was unwilling to submit his body to because of its dark nature.
It is truly the dawning of a new day, where the honor of the seven lances (fake or not) has been allowed to die away, with lords and heroes left and right bowing to King Glenn, most having their minds warped in pursuit of a greater power.
And of course Koinzel had to come to the rescue of the dying group; that was the highlight of the chapter, knowing that the arrogance of the new order would finally be defeated, Glenn’s disciples understanding the simple fact that they were far from unmatched.
But truth be told i would have preferred to have Ato continue her duel with Gedouza, any chance that allows her to further develop her abilities and character independently of Koinzel.
But even taking into account the sword Koinzel gifted her with, i guess her opponent proved too overwhelming to fight against.
Whatever the case, the art in this chapter was just…off; not the art itself but the arrangement. Too many panels seemed wholly unnecessary, almost like Shinono was just trying to get the page count up during his battle sequences, which also failed to flow organically from panel to panel.
Too many moments left me confused as to what had just happened.
RATING: 2/5, pretty basic chapter, nothing interesting to see besides Koinzel, whom i have been waiting to make an appearance for an age. I have always thought that Koinzel and Glenn each pursued goals so far removed from each other that they had no need to fight against one another.
However with this fight against Gungnir, there can be no stopping the conflict.
CLAYMORE is the only manga i know that could possibly stand a chance of competing with Naruto for my adoration; dark, violent yet moving seinen manga series do not come as a good as this (though Ubel Blatt is pretty close).
Chapter 148 was amazing, somehow managing to generate more entertainment juices than even the last two chapters; i know, pretty difficult to believe, especially when considering what transpired in chapters 147 and 147.
But chapter 148 actually managed to bring more than chaotic action to the table (of which their was actually plenty of). We got some AMAZING Claire and Raki action-with the pair getting the best panels out of the entire chapter, an emotional death and a foreshadowing of the end.
Claire and Raki double team Priscilla. A dire situation begins to unfold.
There is this nagging voice at the back of my mind that keeps asking me why the hell the manga is choosing to extend the Priscilla conflict across so many chapters; because it is definitely starting to feel like it’s been forever since this battle first began.
But then again that is a voice i can ignore, not when you consider the foreshadowing in that last panel. I mean, if Priscilla is completely revived and is about to go crazy, what the hell can we expect but destruction on a massive scale.
What has set the last few chapters of Priscilla’s battle with the ghosts apart is the nature of her opponents; which is why i spoke of a tiny voice, because you cannot help but appreciate what we have had the opportunity to witness on paper.
Far from a Goku Vs. Freiza scenario, Nagi made the smart decision to keep the roster of combatants dynamic, a rational outcome if you take into account Priscilla’s strength.
Her power is such that any one enemy that faced her would have come under meteoric strength, losing in the most spectacular manner. So of course it made sense to keep her opponents dynamic, throwing at her everything from awakened beings to abyssal ones to ancient male claymores and so on.
It is only because of how brutal the last few chapters have been, the sorts of enemies that she has come against, that we can believe the logic of Clare bringing Priscilla to such a low point. So, i guess, this hasn’t ran too long, just yet.
+I will admit to feeling some anxiety over the logic Nagi would use to explain Raki’s success at striking Priscilla; truth be told this wasn’t the ass pull i thought it would be.
AND WE GOT TO SEE ISLEY, quite a treat, as he could be my favourite character of the series; did anyone else find the means of his passing a little sad, if not harsh?
Speaking of which, what happened to those undead creatures we saw back during Isley’s fall; i believe the organization referred to them as abyssal hunters of some sort, so powerful that even Isley was fleeing from them…just when you think we might have come to the crux of the claymore world, a closer glance reveals how much more we still have to explore.
Anyway i loved that flash back and i could believe Priscilla casting Raki out of her mind once she cut him down, so much so that he could sneak upon her undetected; it is an interesting consideration how much planning and resolve Raki poured into his mission, that all those moves he made after the time skip were aimed not only at finding Clare but placing himself in the most opportune place to put Priscilla down.
Oh and that flash sword panel/panels…EPIC. This is why i love Claymore so much, how visceral and crisp the art feels; and in a way it makes Priscilla out to be more of a monster than we assumed.
Looking at those panels carefully, Clare clearly dissected her into several thousand tiny pieces within that instant; and what, she healed herself? Regenerated her matter? How? And to what extent can she keep it up, because one then has to wonder how anyone can stand a chance against her.
That last panel said quite a lot; with the ghosts exhausted, exactly how will ANYONE stop Priscilla. Keep in mind how crowded the battle field was a mere ten chapters ago, the anti Priscilla army now reduced to a select few fatigued Claymore, most of whom aren’t likely to master the will to fight.
+Admittedly Tabitha’s death in this chapter was better than what i thought would be a quick demise in the last chapter. Rather than fading away instantly, there was greater impact following the opportunity imputed to her to say good bye to her friends.
Nagi orchestrated the scene beautifully, making it look like she was about to heal her self, close all her wounds, rise to fight once more, only to use the last of her strength imparting some words of wisdom to Miria. Epic stuff. Epic death for a truly Epic Claymore, one who probably didn’t receive nearly enough recognition and appreciation ( i will admit to forgetting most characters outside of Clare, Miria, Deneve and Helen).
PREDICTIONS: We still have Miata standing, and everything we have seen so far suggest that she was on a path to transforming into another Priscilla type claymore, equally demented and just as unnaturally powerful.
Though we can all agree that Miata doesn’t fall anywhere within Priscilla’s range, power wise; no one does, besides Dauf and the destroyer both of whom are long dead.
And we still haven’t seen the hunters yet; minus any of these appearances, well, this is the first time we have seen Priscilla go truly crazy, actually losing her self to the monster.
All Hell is about to break loose…again.
RATING: 10/10 perfect chapter, great art, heart warming final minutes for Tabitha and of course the raging demon god (as they called her) that is Priscilla, about to be unleashed.
Have i said it before, how AWESOME this manga is? Because it is, the perfect balance of action and story in each and every single chapter. Having reached this point it is becoming more and more difficult to wait each and every week for a single 22 page chapter.
Gowther concludes his fight with Threader; Hellbram, Dreyfus and Gilthunder break free of Hauser and Geera’s constraints.
At this point it no longer matters to me how long we will have to wait till Arthur and Meliodas meet. Because the Dreyfus battle is proving to be the most diverse and dynamic conflict we have seen in the entire manga.
What i love is how unpredictable these fights are turning out to be. Gowther Vs. Threader was amazingly drawn, not in terms of art quality per say but the flow of events, the fight scenes amazingly choreographed and the outcome so…organic.
I like manga that have come to understand the idea that a good battle need not end with a knock out; having watched the sins expend considerable energy trying to verbally clear their reputations, it was interesting watching Gowther basically allow Threader to reason the problem out by himself.
Rather than batter him with reason, Gowther simply nudged and prodded, providing him with enough hints and questions for the violent fellow to generate his own doubts; and even without that verbal ending, gowther’s battle with threader managed to be both extremely short and unbelievably entertaining.
And now that we have arrived at the crux of this section of the conflict, with Diana and Geera and Hauser basically saved, we need only sit back and wait for the opportunity to see just what Gowther is made of.
I for one cannot wait to see him let loose.
+On a side note, has anyone considered the possibility that the sins might be a little too overpowered? Think about it, two arcs prior we saw Meliodas, with his singular power, overcome Hellbran and the collective power of several new Holy knights.
Now of course he was in his demon state, but that is none the less saying quite something. And then there is Diana who possessed more power in that one strike of her hammer than Hellbram, a bunch of new Holy knights and HENDRICKSEN HIMSELF put together.
That says quite a lot, and i am not complaining per say, merely stating an observation; this doesn’t disparage my enjoyment of the series. The fact is, though, Diana only came so close to death in the last two chapters because she was ambushed, took a ton of damage while trying to get her bearings, and once she seemed to have finally gathered her wits, had a bunch of holes blasted through her.
Then there was than business of saving human lives. Whatever the case you could say that every single sin that we have met so far possesses the ability to thrash the likes of Dreyfus and Hendricksen single handed. Again, not a bad thing, merely something i have noticed.
Or maybe this says something about Dreyfus, his superiority to Hendricksen. Admittedly he looked quite badass in this chapter.
RATING: 10/10, seriously, this manga is on fire, this arc is on fire, this chapter was on fire. At this point The Seven Deadly Sins is going to have to struggle really hard to mess things up.
HIGHLIGHTS: Threader breaking Gowther’s neck.
I sat down sometime in January and attempted to write a ‘Worst of everything in 2013’ post, basically listing all those elements of anime and manga that most irked. Unfortunately i didn’t have nearly enough data to complete that post, specifically in the area of worst manga, villains or even heroes.
Though truth be told the anime section came quite easily, not only consisting of BlazeBlue, Valrave the liberator and the like but chiefly led by this anime, Arata Kangatari; one of the worst anime series i came across in 2013.
In fact Arata Kangatari topped my worst protagonist/hero list (Arata standing along side Korra from Avatar) as well as my Worst villains/antagonists of 2013 list (this referring primarily to Kadokawa).
That’s how bad i found Arata Kangatari to be, absolutely lacking of anything that could be mistaken for quality in every field that i could think to judge it in.
Every 30 years, a new princess is chosen from the Hime family to serve the Hayagami. The time has come again, however the Hime family hasn’t produced a daughter in 15 years; save for one, the 15-year-old Arata.
The only problem is, Arata is actually a male. Forced to disguise himself and take the place of the princess candidate until a formal one can be found, he attends the festival only to witness the current princess, Kokuri-hime, murdered by the hand of the princess' personal guard, the 12 Shinshou. As he runs for his life, Kannagi of the 12 convinces everyone that Arata is the one who murdered the princess instead, and now everyone in the Imperial Court is after his head.
Okay, let’s look at what Arata Kangatari might put forward as its hook. While fleeing from the murderous intentions of an imperial court, and indeed nation, beguiled into seeking his blood for the most heinous crime ever committed in their world, young Arata is thrust out of his fantastical realm into modern day Japan, a world devoid of all magic.
Modern day Arata, while struggling to remain afloat amongst the chaos of high school life is suddenly thrust out of modernity and dropped into a fantasy land, where magic reigns and legendary beings walk.
Two boys with the same face struggle to come to terms with the new hand they have been dealt. Now does that sound like something you would want to watch? Well it intrigued me.
Because with such a situation what you can expect is confusion to ensue; as both parties struggle to assimilate into their new environments, feathers are bound to be ruffled, secrets brought to the light and unknown demons confronted, the resulting contention making for some pretty engaging conflicts.
And what makes a quality story if not conflicts on an epic scale, the purpose of which is to draw viewers into the complex web that form’s our protagonists’ attempts to overcome hardships
So what did Arata Kangatari deliver instead? Well, conflict of course, confusion, chaos, challenges to overcome and all that. Which can only mean great success for the series, right?
WRONG. WRONG. WRONG. WRONG. WRONG.
+But before that. I have to ask; was Arata Kangatari really a 2013 anime series? Is Wikipedia really trying to convince that Arata Kangatari only made its debut in 2013? With production values such as was presented?
When a writer/director sits himself down to pen an anime, in no way can they guarantee the success of the story that will eventually appear on screen, and that’s because it’s impossible to determine which way personal tastes will swing.
SO does that mean that one can only sit back, anxiously waiting for the fates to decide how an anime will appeal to its viewers? Well, no, because an anime creator still has in his hands the power to control how the anime is received; at the very least making certain that, in the worst case scenario, where otaku happen to be completely disgusted by the plot and characters of the story, they do not walk away from the experience utterly distressed.
Rather its within the hands of an anime creator to ensure that every creation has a little something that will positively impact their crappy story, one or two elements that should at least keep the audience glued to an anime till the end.
And this couldn’t be easier to achieve in shonen fantasy, because all you need to keep us viewers interested is decent animation, great action scenes, intricate battle structures, either so mind blowing as to wow us, or so complex as to engage us intimately with regards to the strategies in play.
Combining these elements together along with a great musical score, its more than possible to entertain the hell out of anime fans even in the presence of garbage story telling (though thinking about it, this can’t be true; because Blazeblue was just that, great animation, art, decent music, action scenes and a garbage story line. In the end it still sucked to no end).
But what the hell did Arata Kangatari deliver? Mediocre art, less than mediocre animation, terrible action scenes, negligible musical scores, basically zero production values worth talking about.
And what exactly did they assume would keep me glued to the screen, great story telling? Or maybe compelling and well developed characters? Because even these they couldn’t deliver.
Back to the story. Arata Kangatari is terribly written and not because it lacked compelling plotlines. And you can’t really complain about the concept either; the series fails at the execution stage.
It’s almost like the writer marked off all major points in his story map, couldn’t really figure out how the story would jump from one point to another, figured it didn’t matter and threw whatever he thought would work into the picture so long as it brought about the desired outcome.
And this is my problem with Tales of the Abyss, an even worse anime (that i can’t believe am still watching). All these series seem to assume that the end always justifies the means; that we don’t care how that epic battle comes about, who did what and why, so long as we get epic battles at one point.
+Though it might be argued that the story truly began to flounder at the character stage. I don’t think i have ever come across as sappier, needy, self centred twat of a primary protagonist (not even sure what twat means, but it fits the bill here).
As a hero Arata fails, firstly because he whines all the time for no justifiable reason. Seriously, this dude could be worse than even Shinji; everything is about him, all the suffering he has undergone during his years of torture in school, all the horrors of normal life.
He doesn’t move without some sort of pep talk pulling him back from an abyss of passiveness. And i never could really figure out the logic of his misery. Again it’s like the authors needed a hero that had suffered certain horrors yet couldn’t figure out why these actions were targeted towards him and why it affected him so intensely.
Arata Kangatari basically states a lot of facts and expects you to just swallow them; its infuriating how dumb this series got. I want anyone who watched it to try and reason out to me the rational of Kadokawa and his hate for Arata.
I mean this guy just came off as little more than a psycho hiding under the guise of mentally tortured soul turned bully. None of these characters made sense. Every single one of them existed for the sole purpose of being positively affirmed by someone else.
It’s like if they didn’t receive their fair share of ‘That’s a good boy.’ pats on the head, they couldn’t truly accept the potential they carried within them, and could only wait to crumble under some vague mental or physical burden.
…thinking about, i want to scream at this anime. Pondering on what i watched, it is only hitting me now just how pointless Arata was, how dumb his rivalry with Kadokawa was, how irrational Arata’s weaknesses were, only in existence to allow for some ridiculous and none existent character development to occur in the end.
We had to wait 12 episodes just to see everyone recognise just how amazing Arata is, like that was the magic bullet he needed to spur him forth. It might seem like i am placing so much emphasis on Arata, but am not.
Every other character in the series pretty much falls into this same mould, except for the real Arata, whose role in the series was pretty negligible.
VERDICT: Arata Kangatari is basically a telenova, where chaos ensues because people always face each other on the field of battle, could lay their souls bare, could easily clear up all the misunderstands, but instead choose to fight, only to laugh about everything at the end, never acknowledging how stupid they were, that by choosing to not leap to conclusions over and over and over and over and over and over and over again, the world would be at peace.
Arata Kangatari is without a doubt the worst anime of 2013, at least that i watched. The series spends more time dramatizing tiny moments during its run that trying to tell a compelling story.
RATING: 0/10, i have never awarded anything a 0 before; but this most definitely deserves it.
HIGHLIGHTS: The Kannagi/Akachi feud almost irritated me as much as the Kadokawa/Arata rivalry; with a cast full of attention hungry irritations there isn’t one moment worth highlighting.
I think i mentioned it somewhere that it wasn’t until 2007 that i first began watching anime and reading manga with gusto, having had little exposure prior, precluding YuGiOh! which is devoured with intensity during my earlier years.
Sufficing to say my approach to anime and manga is a little different now than it was a few years back, a little less discerning; it was probably because my exposure to anime back then was so limited that i pretty much devoured whatever i encountered-so long as it fell within specific battle oriented categories.
Only now, with my tastes slowly expanding and transforming, can i say that i have gathered a pretty intricate perspective on anime, at least based on what i have watched and read; and its only now, after so many years that i can begin to appreciate just what anime and manga has to offer as a pretty unique medium of entertainment and, more importantly, all the flaws that it has been known to present to its viewers.
Though that description might in itself present some issues; after all how do you separate a fault, a failing, from an attribute; it’s like complaining that no one ever dies in comic books, not taking into account that the triviality of death is a deep rooted attribute and characteristic of the comic book universe, if it is to continue down its current structure of story telling.
In this post i attempt to cover all those elements and factors of anime and manga that i have found irksome and irritating over the years.
Though i would qualify that by saying that not every element or attribute mentioned in this post is applicable to anime in general, but rather specific facets, types, genres of anime that i have come across.
Equally important is the fact that the negative nature of some of the elements mentioned is only determined by their usage; in other words certain elements might prove irksome in one scenario but brilliant in another; most times it comes down to execution.
So, without further delay, what irritates me, sometimes even downright infuriates, me about anime:
1. NAKAMA POWER- I intend to elaborate on this issue in another post, but for now i will say that there is probably no bigger sin that has ever been introduced in anime than this irritation known as nakama power. The idea that the outcome of battle would be determined by the feelings and positive hopes one one party makes my blood boil.
I was highly amused while watching this one anime in which, after spouting a grand speech on heroic ideals and determination and wanting to protect others, the hero found himself soundly defeated by an enemy that went on to remind him that no amount of resolve could close the distance in strength between them.
Even within the fictional world of anime one expects a level of logic and realism to prevail; and there is no plausible realm in which great resolve can translate into raw power and skill, and 99% of the anime that utilize this concept are completely ruined by the presence of Nakama power.
Notice that even Dragon ball z, the cliché of cliché’ anime, somehow managed to avoid the use of nakama power, instead depending on ridiculous power ups, a silly tool still way more justifiable than Nakama power.
Note worthy examples include almost everything in Fairy tail, One piece to an extent; though bleach [sort of] escapes this category, instead finding its poison elsewhere. Not forgetting Guilty Crown
Acceptable uses of the concept can be found in Gurren Luggan and History’s Strongest Disciple. Though series like Blood+ and Fullmetal Alchemist has proven this concept largely unnecessary.
2. RANDOM POWER UPS- I HATE random power ups almost as much as i detest Nakama power, and while it fares more positively in comparison Nakama power, the sudden emergence of hidden abilities, earth shattering powers, never before hinted upon weapons will destroy the credibility of an anime (at least in my eyes) faster than the dumbest plot holes.
And the coincidence of all such circumstances, always timed to unleash in time to contend with some unstoppable force, rendering any strategy or battle plans meaningless.
And yes i consider Ichigo’s sudden uber hollowification against Uluquiora to be a random power up, just one of the few that worked but only because the Esparda’s defeat by any other means would have been, as otaku like to say, an ass pull.
And here’s where i appreciate series like Naruto and One piece that showcase a primary protagonist’s slow rise to power; because the majority of shonen anime depend upon sudden power ups to turn wimpy incompetent heroes into formidable opponents to near invincible villains.
One wonders why they create such powerful villains if rationally defeating them will eventually prove impossible outside some previously unknown super saiyan mode.
And am now hearing rumours that Hunter X Hunter does just this with Gon during the Chimera ant arc; though one can only assume that, given Togashi’s track record, he, along with the likes of Gurren Luggan, will be one of a few that can pull this off brilliantly.
3. GENIUS PROTAGONISTS- Its difficult to believe that some years back many Naruto fans were floating the idea that the series would have been better off with Sasuke as the lead, which doesn’t make sense because natural born geniuses in anime strip the tension out of most story lines, making things seem too easy.
There is no place for geniuses in anime and manga outside of support roles or as antagonists; thought its worth mentioning that those anime which effectively utilize genius protagonists balance them out with even smarter villains and acceptably challenging obstacles. Just look at Death note where no victory was achieved without considerable struggle.
4. BATTLE GENIUSES- Back to picking on the big 3; I am talking about characters that, while barely average in intelligence, will walk onto the battle field against a superior opponent and almost always emerge victorious, always adapting in the last instant against a power initially overwhelming to them.
And this pretty much describes Ichigo, always spending the better part of an hour getting skewered and battered, only to discover the opponents weakness through pure observation when challenging an invisible attack, or gaining that extra boost of speed to match a demonically fast enemy.
It’s always the same dumb nonsense, that an ability to adapt in the field can literally serve you against any and all enemies, one wondering just how discovering your enemy’s weaknesses after an hour’s battle will aid you at a point in time where you should be in no physical shape to achieve victory.
It’s probably why i appreciated Jiraiya’s death so much in Naruto, that even after discovering the enemy’s true power, he found himself incapable of doing anything other than sending this information off to his pupil, dying in the process.
A lesser mangaka would have eliminated that particular plot, instead having Naruto display uncharacteristic intelligence in the midst of battle.
5. NAKAMA- Maybe there was something initially endearing to this concept upon its conception who knows how far back, but i am tired of anime and manga that possess little to no plot outside of the protagonist’s need to defend his nakama.
This term has been severely misused in story telling, the topic of many grand speeches to justify one unnecessary conflict after another.
6. FAN SERVICE- It would be a strange otaku that would complain about the presence and level of fan service in Queen’s blade, because that’s pretty much all the series is about. However one such Otaku would be more than justified in making the same complaint against a series like Freezing Vibration, essentially attempting to take a darker tone with its story but ruining the tension created by attacks that do little more than rip cloth and expose flesh.
Fan service has its place in anime, and a few splashes here and there in even the most serious anime isn’t likely to disparage its quality. Unfortunately most fan service proves to be quite unnecessary.
I should also probably mention the weird and unrealistic body sizes and proportions.
7. WHINY VILLAINS- I have elaborated on this fault in a separate post detailing the traits of a great villain. And reiterating those complaints, i have just about had it with villains in anime and manga whose primary purpose in life seems to be to elicit sympathy from the audience.
That so many villains these days have to berate use with a sob story about their lives, that we are expected to forgive and relate to fiendish characters whose only saving grace is the ridiculously unrealistic levels of torture they underwent during their youth; that almost all anime today end with the hero and villain weeping incessantly over the course their lives took. It irritates me to no end, that anime cannot bring to us some truly evil villains.
Tortured pasts and complicated origin stories do not necessarily make great villains.
8. GRATUITOUS VIOLENCE- I have come across what i would refer to as some considerably strange otaku who will not touch an anime unless it spills blood and guts in liberal amounts. I don’t get the appeal.
Action series devoid of blood in any form are unrealistic and make absolutely no sense. However there are series whose only selling point is the glorious amounts of blood spilt in each episode.
Too many anime series use gore for shock’s sake, attempting to keep fans glued to the screen with the promise of a thousand unique and gruesome deaths. It’s the reason i failed to watch Final Destination, which is just one massive death fest.
Great offenders here include Afro Samurai and Shigurui. Again i understand the place gore has in anime; however more than half of the bloody anime i have come across felt like they were forcing gore for gore’s sake.
9. LENGTHY BATTLES- I wrote a post on this particular topic a while back, comparing short and long battles in anime. And i remember concluding that both forms of battle had a role to play in an anime, and how positive a long or short battle proved to be was always determined by the the circumstances in play.
In other words there are times where lengthy battles are indeed a necessity. This unfortunately doesn’t apply to most anime, who have no problem allowing duels to run into the dozens of episodes at a time.
Most such anime simply fail to keep the clashes fresh, and over time the battles become repetitive, basically bringing to the screen too many of the intricacies of the fight, basically a blow by blow telling.
10. COMPLEX TERMINOLOGY- One of several reasons mecha as a genre simply doesn’t appeal to me; the idea that an anime would waste precious minutes explaining to us viewers the intricacies of some of these scientific and engineering concepts simply baffles me.
I understand the need to create realism in one’s story, but do we need to waste time listening to characters blurting out gibberish about how the central triflorating coil impacts the heating of the semi concrete switch.
90% of all mecha and sci-fi series feel the need to fill us in on how their false science works. Outside of actual elements of an anime that are key to understanding the concept that drives a series, they all need to stop.
11. UNYIELDING PROTAGONISTS- During my first two hundred episodes of One Piece is seriously considered dropping the series, not because of its quirky style but primarily due to Luffy, a hero that, no matter how many times he was decimated by his enemy, always got up, again and again, ready to take loads more punishment.
Now am not saying that Luffy never went down during those initial 200-400 episodes; I am saying that when he did go down, he still stood up to face his opponent once more, most definitely unconscious but none the less indomitable.
I am curious. Medically speaking if i snatched a club up and knocked a human being down, unconscious and all, would it be within their ability to rise up none the less and continue engaging in battle? Because i might be wrong and Luffy could well be within the limits of reality.
12. BATTLE MONOLOGUE- I understand why combatants would choose to express themselves in battle; what i don’t understand is why any being of average intelligence would decide to reveal the secrets of his ability to his enemy.
I mean, isn’t that part of the strategy, keeping your enemy guessing and basically ambushing them during a fight? I get that we the viewers need to understand what is going on in a given scene, but writers could be smarter about educating anime fans.
It’s probably for this reason that i still appreciate the old Samurai X anime, that each major clash included a bystander that basically provided us, the viewers, a blow by blow of the fast paced events occurring on the battle field; that’s actually a more believable tool that Kenshin simply spilling to Sato the rational of his legendary skill.
13. INBALANCED CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT- Krillin says it all. I would have had much greater appreciation for Ichigo’s growth during Bleach’s progress if there was anything akin to favourable development for support characters such as Rukia and Sado.
Anime series, especially those with large casts, need to learn to provide balanced development to all core cast members of any given stories. The idea of a single character driving the success of an entire story is long obsolete.
14. THE ONE- This harks back to my 13th point; the idea of that so called singular hero born and bread and chosen to rise, rule, save the world has a tendency to turn me off. Though, as i have mentioned before, certain series have the uncanny ability to pull tropes such as this off brilliantly.
Again it all comes down to execution; and anime that choose to gush over a single core character at the expense of all other important characters will kill an anime for me.
15. AMATEUR HEROES- Now this isn’t necessarily a criticism, but more of a…consideration. I understand the idea of anime, especially shonen, being targeted primarily towards certain audiences; but i can’t be the only one to notice that 95% of all heroes in all anime universes a younger than 12 years of age.
The idea that, on a vast planet of diversely skilled individuals, one ten year old stands as the best hope of humanity against one threat or another. This was my problem with copellion (Anime), whose organization had the opportunity to engineer their heroes into being rather than simply choosing them from the masses.
And they still chose to create restrictively skilled high school age girls and boys. I sometimes find myself rolling my eyes at the idea of a 7 year old acting no different from a 30 year old, commanding great power and respect and displaying even greater wisdom.
And again this isn’t always a bad thing; after all i love Naruto. But some of these kids shouldn’t even know how to tie their shoe laces, yet i am supposed to believe that they can concoct genius level strategies and pilot super robots?
16. WHINY CHARACTERS/CONFLICTED HEROES- I think most Otaku will have at some point encountered these most irritating of characters. More often than not, the most conflicted heroes are also the most whiny. You know them, those protagonists that simply cannot make their minds up, will spend most of the series fleeing from responsibility or a calling, whining and crying about their supposedly poor lives, before finally making an appearance at the end.
I can probably accept a little whining, but characters spending nearly two thirds of the series weeping extremely irritate me.
17.USLESS FEMALE CHARACTERS-
I have to confess; i have come across very few female characters in anime and manga that i actually like; and it has nothing to do with the fact that so many of them play little more role than the damsel in distress…okay maybe that’s partly the problem.
However i am most irked by how useless most of them are to the plots of their respective series, besides contributing to fan service and ecchi components.
18. BEACH EPISODES-
I get it; they’re filler, supposed to allow us a glimpse into the lives of our protagonists as they wind down from the stress of daily life, should be funny, supposed to be enlightening, but i am sick to death of them.
If every anime chose to strike these beach/camping episodes from their structures, i would be greatly pleased. The only exception i have found is Another, which actually used the beach episode to pull off a shocking death.
19. CONTRADICTING AGES- Characters with 12 year old bodies that are supposedly several years older-for the record, i am not talking about vampires and the like, but basically human characters; this goes back to my complaint about a silly abundance of teen and pre teen heroes, which is what most such anime do, supposedly bringing older and more mature protagonists to situations, but still determined to bring a child like attitude and atmosphere to the series.
20. PAEDOPHILIA- There are certain anime series that can pull off some innocently funny situations between considerably older and considerably younger characters. Most however come off as quite disturbing.
And that’s it for this rant about those dark sides of anime that infuriate me; though strangely enough, its because this is anime we are talking about that i am not actually advocating for any of these to get eliminated from basic anime story telling.
Anime has a reputation for taking the mundane and squeezing magic out of it; i am certain that, by putting their heads together, anime writers, producers, creators can take any of these elements and transform them into items that can generate considerable entertainment.