metalsnakezero (Level 16)

Attack on Titan is pretty damn good.
followed by
70
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Another week, another posting of my impressions. So lets begin.

THE IDOLM@STER

The IdolM@ster franchise has been a popular idol sim in Japan for a long time. It was one of the main sources of revenue for the 360 in Japan and is now gaining a true anime adoption (Lets ignore Xenoglossia). The first episode is pretty much a documentary type film of the girls in their daily lives, interacting with each other, practicing their dancing and singing, and getting set ups for performances. In the end, however, all was being filmed by their new producer, who has no name at the moment (Kinda like the game). It’s a interesting set up for a first episode at least but I wouldn’t expect the rest of the series to be like this. We have pretty much the entire cast from the game, Amami Haruka ( Nakamura Eriko), Hoshii Miki ( Hasegawa Akiko), Kisaragi Chihaya ( Imai Asami), Takatsuki Yayoi ( Nigo Mayako), Hagiwara Yukiho ( Asakura Azumi), Kikuchi Makoto ( Hirata Hiromi), Futami Ami/Mami ( Shimoda Asami), Minase Iori ( Kugimiya Rie), Miura Azusa ( Takahashi Chiaki), Shijou Takane (Hara Yumi), Ganaha Hibiki (Numakura Manami), and Akizuki Ritsuko ( Wakabayashi Naomi). All of which having their own personalities and characteristics. We also have the 765 Pro’s secretary, Otonashi Kotori (Takita Juri), 765 Production’s faceless president, Takagi Junjirou (Ootsuka Houchuu), and the new Producer ( Akabane Kenji). The shows visuals give off a very k-on feel from its designs of characters, movements, and color palette which works out in the end. As it stands, THE IDOLM@STER is very much for fans of the franchise and doesn’t introduce itself for newcomers who weren’t keeping up with it.

Usagi Drop

If a family member just dead and has left their child, who is completely ignored by everyone else, would you take care of them? That is what 30-year-old salaryman Kawachi Daikichi ( Tsuchida Hiroshi) was questioned when the family was deciding what to do with Grandpa’s illegitimate daughter, Kaga Rin (voiced by 9-year-old Matsuura Ayu). It is the journey of these two making the best of life and creating a strong bond between each other. You can’t help but care about Rin being a pretty innocent child and Daikichi has something to work hard for. Visuals are pretty simple designs but have a very sketch like. Plus the lighting helps set the scene really well. I can’t see anyone not liking this touching show when it deals with first time parenting.
Usagi Drop is streaming on CrunchyRoll: http://www.crunchyroll.com/usagi-drop

NO.6

NoitaminA and BONES powers combine has created show about to strange boys sleeping together. Ok no, it isn’t that weird, sort of. The story surrounds a genius boy Shion ( Kaji Yuuki) and a escaped criminal Nezumi ( Hosoya Yoshimasa), which all sounds like some strange TV drama. However, given that their world is controlled by determining who the right people to live in NO.6 and the true nature of it, which is similar to other conspiracy stories like 1984. It is pretty obvious that this is a introduction episode before the storm hits so not much has happen (besides the Yaoi undertones). Visuals are the usual BONES quality, mainly from the Darker than black designs and color palette. This show, as of now, is a setting up for what to come.
NO.6 is streaming on CrunchyRoll: http://www.crunchyroll.com/no-6

Mawaru Penguindrum

Another original with a family of three siblings, survival, and blue penguins. The story begins with the three siblings of the Takakura family, oldest son Kanba ( Kimura Subaru), the younger brother Shouma (Kimura Ryouhei), and their younger sister Himari (Arakawa Miho), who they love to death, as they have a happy day at the aquarium since Himari won’t live long due to a incurable health problem. However, things go awry as Himari collapses and is at the end of her line. When the boys were just about to lose hope, the black penguin cap that Shouma bought Himari, has revived her fully. While all is now well, the cap demands them they must offer a price to pay in-order to keep Himari alive. It is a crazy but touching tale of a family bonding that will potentially go in to themes of sacrificing for those you love. Visuals are outstanding with so many designs, colors, and movements that fill the screen at any given moment. It is a wild ride of beauty that everyone should give a chance to see.
 

Highlights


 So many things are happening here
 So many things are happening here

 Fabulous
 Fabulous

 Just a boy kissing another boy's head
 Just a boy kissing another boy's head

 Interesting how they didn't notice the camera sooner
 Interesting how they didn't notice the camera sooner

 How can you say no to a face like that?
 How can you say no to a face like that?

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A lot has just been release this week a long with some I missed from last week so the best thing to do is post about 4 episodes a week which helps breaks things down a bit. So lets get started with out culture shock show Ikoku Meiro no Croisée, comedy filled YuruYuri, old style Kami-sama Dolls, and original series Sacred Seven.
 

Ikoku Meiro no Croisée

A young Japanese girl, Yune (Touyama Nao), travels to Paris to see the world. This could had ran as some silly way for loli fanservice but Ikoku Meiro no Croisée doesn’t go for cheap tricks but heartwarming, innocent, and   the idea of cultural differences. The story goes with Yune starting her stay in Paris by living a kind old man, Oscar Claudel (Tanaka Hideyuki), and Claude Claudel (Kondou Takashi) owner of the Enseignes du Roy ironworks shop and one who wasn’t sure about Yune’s traditions. From there, Yune and Claude begin to understand one another in their cultural differences. This series takes place in the 19 century where cultures from around the world were beginning to meet and greet and this first episode really showcase that with many people in the streets of Paris being shock to see a little girl walking around in a beautiful kimono, which was new to most people. Yune, unlike most little anime girls, is portrayed as a innocent, curious, and respectable person as well as being incredibly adorable. Claude is the usual hardworking young man who is willing to come to terms with Yune helping him out despite their misunderstanding with their first meeting and Oscar is the wise old man that helps both Yune and Claude understand each other and the world. While everyone in the show is speaking in Japanese, their mind sets and wordings are in French which may confuse people when listening to what they say. Visually, the show is beautiful with crisp lighting, colors, and designs. Only a few moments had characters turned simplified when in a scene of comedy. While many may not like the slow pacing of the show, there is a lot to appreciate like its style, characters, and setting.

YuruYuri

Despite the “Yuri” in the title, there isn’t any of that the show, kinda. What you will get is pretty nicely paced comedy and showcasing new seiyuus. The show stars our cast of four middle school girls, Akaza Akari (Mikami Shiori), Toshinou Kyouko (Ootsubo Yuka),  Funami Yui (Tsuda Minami), and Yoshikawa Chinatsu (Ookubo Rumi) hanging out in the abandon tea ceremony clubroom to establish their fun club. Its pretty much the typical slice of life comedy with comedy being the main course. See, the pacing from joke to joke is really well done and allows the viewer interested in what is and will happen. And all of the jokes are related or connect to one another. Like I said before, this is one of those series where it'll look good on the seiyuu's resume as they all do a really good job with their character's personalities and able to sound cute while being unique and not some generic voice. If I have a small problem with the show it would be the look of it as the studio want with some type of light brown tone to it which dulls the colors little, leaving no real bright coloring. Character designs are blob like with round faces making for some cute looks. For those looking for a solid comedy try out YuruYuri and maybe you can find "Yuri" in it.
 
You can find this show streaming on CrunchyRoll: http://www.crunchyroll.com/yuruyuri

Kami-sama Dolls

Watching this show kinda re-minded me of animes years ago. It has an ordinary guy, Kuga Kyouhei (Okamoto Nobuhiko), who left his village to live in the city (Tokyo, of course), his village has are dark secret that is now after him in the city, his love interest, Shiba Hibino (Kayano Ai), who is a fellow student and helping him out in this dyer situation along with his little sister, Utao (Fukuen Misato), that has control over a Kakashi — mysterious dolls that are believed to be the empty shells of god. All of this is followed up with visual that has a slight taste of the old school anime with older looking character designs and a pale overlay. This is, what I considered, a good and bad thing about this show. See, while it does make good on a style that  many can remember to, it also feels like it is something that was already done before and doesn't feel like it'll have any twist to make it pop out more. It is a decent show for those who are looking for something to watch.
 
 
 
You can find this show streaming on CrunchyRoll: http://www.crunchyroll.com/kamisama-dolls

Sacred Seven

Hey, Code Geass is back. No wait it just has the same design as Code Geass and ever more bizarre plot involving stones, highschool, super powered beings, and a god damn maid army! So the story goes 7-year-old Tandouji Aruma (Terashima Takuma) has some sort of power that he once unleashed and now wants to avoid people in case it happens again.  However, beings called “Ashi” appear and start causing some trouble. While Aruma was sorta able to fight it, he wasn't able to keep control not until Aiba Ruri (Nakajima Megumi) entrust him with a jewel imbued with her will to help him realize his true power to defeat them. It basically made him transform. From here on out it is good vs evil using the power of stones. Design wise, it is basically Code Geass with bright colors, pretty character designs, and minus the lengthy bodies. So far things are decent enough to watch but since it is an original show, a lot can happen. 
 
You can find this show stream on CunchyRoll, and Hulu: http://www.hulu.com/sacred-seven http://www.crunchyroll.com/sacred-seven
 
 

Highlights

 She's so adorable XD
 She's so adorable XD

 I think you're hugging her too tightly
 I think you're hugging her too tightly

 Again, Maid army!
 Again, Maid army!

 Dazzling sta... or wait, wrong show :P
 Dazzling sta... or wait, wrong show :P

 Again, kinda Yuri
 Again, kinda Yuri
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Its summer and so begins a new season of animes. While there are many in this season, I feel that some aren't as appealing as others. With that said I'll do my best to cover as many as possible and see if they are really wroth watching. This weeks shows are a early stream of Blood-C, hour long prologue of Kamisama no Memochou, Flash animation Double J, and Loli Basketball Ro-Kyu-Bu!. 
 

Blood-C

The blood series has been a interesting show of super power girls slaying demons called “Furukimono”, ancient demons that prey on humans. The series began with the wonderful movie, Blood: The last Vampire and its first TV series, Blood +. Now with the power of Production I.G and CLAMP, we have Blood-C. The story involves Saya Kisaragi ( Nana Mizuki) as a typical highschool girl and part time priest at the family shrine who her father task her as a slayer. Like most Nana characters, Saya has most of those characteristics. Kindness, beauty, super powers, and a good singing voice. Along for the ride is her close friend Nanahara Fumito (Nojima Kenji), Saya’s classmates, Amino Yuuka ( Asano Masumi), Motoe Nono/Nene ( Fukuen Misato), Tokizane Shinichirou ( Suzuki Tatsuhisa), class president Tomofusa Itsuki ( Abe Atsushi), and their sexy homeroom teacher Tsutsutori Kanako (Miyagawa Miho). If you haven't tell from the character designs or the fact that there are twins in the show, this is pretty much a CLAMPs work with the usual lengthy bodies, that make me feel like my vertical axis on my screen is stretched too high, to how everyone is so beautiful in some aspect. It pacing is also CLAMP like with a ordinary day in the first half of the episode and later a huge event happens that really sets the tone for the rest of the series. Since I watched this from a streaming feed, its hard to tell the quality of the show's look since the colors are dull out but it is well animated with lots of movements, especially in the fight scenes. This show isn't afraid of showing off some blood with our first demon get its arms and head chopped off, along with a beat up looking Saya. Most scenes usually don't have music playing in the background with adds to the build ups and tensions, While some Blood fans may not like this first episode after years from it last showing, Blood C still holds true to its roots while operating in a different style. 
 

Kamisama no Memochou

Strange things are happening and only the NEET Detective Yuuko "Alice" Shionji (Yui Ogura) can solve them while searching for a missing friend. With the help of his assistant, Narumi Fujishima ( Matsuoka Yoshitsug) and a group of other NEETs, they go out to solving cases for the sake of finding the truth. Something about this show reminds me of Gosick and it mainly surrounds our NEET Detective. Like Victorique, Alice is a smart individual showing she is able to handle herself in most situations. However, she is still a child at heart is usually breaks down from the most trivial things like her chopsticks not breaking cleanly and when the ear on her teddy bear came off. However, all of the other characters aren't as interesting as Alice and mostly come from the generic character types as of this point. While characters, as of this point, aren't as engaging, the mystery aspect of the show is its strong point. With the whole case blowing down to the single truth and meaning makes for some interesting outcomes, even if the outcome is grim. Visually, the show looks nice with a similar design to Index/Railgun series J.C.Staff, complementing the urban theme the show is pushing. So far a nice start for a show that isn't suffering too much from J.C. Staff's weirdness and hopefully they stick to it.   
  

Double-J

 A 4 minute comedy that is was quick but kinda painful to watch. Well to be honest it was more boring than annoying. Jokes were okay but the 4 minute run doesn't help carry the jokes and it is mostly random ideas that aren't clever or well designed like SHAFTs random comedy. Speaking of SHAFT but not as good, the visual are very abstract like with pale, odd colors, with odd animations that don't feel like any effort was made to make it look like it was on purpose. The whole scenario surrounds our main character looking for a club to join where he stumbles upon the "Traditional Art" club with 4 female members. And that is about it. There is nothing going for this show. It is too short for its own good and while it is trying to make it interesting with its odd art style, it doesn't pop as well as other studios.  
 
  
 

Ro-Kyu-Bu!

 I felt wrong when I was watching this. There is a sense of creepiness in show that I don't like, even if it trying to be all innocent about it.  Showing these elementary school girls in the showers, having them call their coach Onii-chan, and one of the girls is too tall and too well-endowed for her age. Also some of the older female cast look a little too young and are also shorter in a odd way. So the story goes Hasegawa Subaru ( Kaji Yuuki) helping her aunt's girls basketball team at her elementary school after being blackmailed in to doing so. From their he start to be impress with their basketball abilities as they train, including one Minato Tomoka (Hanazawa Kana) by her experience with the game. There are signs of development between couch and team but it kinda hard to watch when you realize that you are watching little girls doing stuff. It is a little sad because I would watch this just for the actors like Kana, Saki ( Hikasa Youko), Aoi (Itou Kanae), and  Aunt Miho (Itou Shizuka) all do a pretty good performance. The show also looks colorful and cute with a surprising amount of animation, including a scene of Tomoka just pulling off some cool basketball moves for someone that is 3 feet tall. I do wish I recommend this show but there is too many things that feel wrong about it. 
 
 

Highlights

 
      Let see Twins, Girl with glasses and very large twintails, and puck girl. Yep, this is a CLAMP show
      Let see Twins, Girl with glasses and very large twintails, and puck girl. Yep, this is a CLAMP show

 Don't mess with her, ok
 Don't mess with her, ok

 I would like to enjoy this but I can't
 I would like to enjoy this but I can't

 Don't worry, we will get you another one
 Don't worry, we will get you another one

 -_-; no shame
 -_-; no shame

 Girl got some moves
 Girl got some moves
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Its time to evaluate shows I watched, giving them a short impression and a grade, while going a little in-dept with ones I just watched. So let get started.

Overview

 

X-Men

So finally, Madhouse gets something right with X-Men. While the plot isn’t anything special, it’s the characters I kinda remember from either the comics or the cartoon. Adding good visuals and fitting Japanese voices and you got yourself a good adoption of a western series.

4 out of 5

 



Dog Days
While the premise is straight out of Zero no Tsukaima, characters are simple at best, and lack of tension due to the war being an event, this show is pretty harmless to watch and how can you not like energetic guy who is also the Galactic Pretty boy. Supported with solid animation and a colorful pallet, you'll be able to have an enjoyable time with Dog Days. Just hope you don't mind Cats and Dogs ears and tails.
3 out of 5




Tiger & Bunny
Obviously a show that isn't about cute girls, Tiger & Bunny set the stage with a unique twist on superheros, along with a cast of interesting characters with possible back-stories,  Wonderful art style, animation, and good use of CG.
5 out of 5




Nichijou 

An incredibly funny show with lots of strange gags, puns, and humor. Top it off with great art style and animation from Kyoto Animation and you go yourself a solid comedy.
5 out of 5





Hanasaku Iroha
P.A.Works 10th anniversary project that showcase their talent of a strong story, interesting characters, and overall beautiful art style and animation.
5 out of 5




Ore-tachi ni Tsubasa wa Nai

What a mess. It is never a good idea to compile multiple stories with poor pacing, unlikeable characters from idiots to sluts, and flat jokes.

1 out of 5




Sengoku Otome ~Momoiro Paradox~

Who comes up with these ideas? Dumb characters, bland visuals, fan-service in the most immature ways.

1 out of 5

 




Steins;Gate
A strange mystery tale involving the theories of time-travel, murder, and odd ball characters. Able to set an atmosphere that makes you question what’s going on. However, the lengthy dialog may be a negative to some, many will enjoy the goofy conversations and the intellectual ones.

4 out of 5



A-Channel

While I agree that this is very much a K-on! clone, it is really doesn’t make it bad. A-Channel makes solid use of the usual slice of life formula with a steady pacing, basic but likeable characters, simple character design, and gorgeous backgrounds and environments.

4 out of 5

 



Maria Holic Alive

Very much like the first season with strange designs, wacky comedy, and odd premise of a lesbian living with a cross-dressing boy, in a all girl school dorm.

4 out of 5

 



First Impressions

C: The Money of Soul and Possibility Control

So what is money? Does it have any other use then just a way to purchase items? What if you have to fight for it? These are the question that C makes its audience ask and a lot is riding on that premise. Our main character, Yogi Kimimaro (Uchiyama Kouki), is a university student who is barely getting by with a scholarship and a few part-time jobs. One day, a mysterious man offers him a chance to get limitless amounts of money if he is will to venture in to a parallel world call the Financial District. This series has the possibilities to be a interesting tale. However, what doesn’t have the potential is the visuals. They are flat out ugly. Very lack luster colors, bland backgrounds, and odd character designs makes for a rough experience to watch the show at times. Visuals, good or bad, won’t degrade the quality of the story and its direction.

 


Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae wo Boku-tachi wa Mada Shiranai

Man, this title is long but that is the least of this shows problems. However, the problems this show has doesn’t effect the plot of this new noitaminA show too much. The story goes that a group of friends, Jintan ( Irino Miyu), Anaru ( Tomatsu Haruka), Yukiatsu ( Sakurai Takahiro), Tsuruiko ( Hayami Saori), and Poppo ( Kondou Takayuki), all want their spread ways after six years. However, Menma ( Kayano Ai) asked Jintan to grant her a wish which involves getting the group back together.   While this set up is kind a weird and it would led to a typical journey of convincing old friends to get back together, what makes it interesting is the possible reason these characters changed and it all centered around Menma in some ways. However, it’ll be tough at times to watch these characters exaggerate themselves a bit too much. The visuals are pretty similar to Sora no Woto of blobby character designs, heavy detailed backgrounds, and lots of animations. Some stuff I have to scratch my head at with the some hair designs and comedic scenes but it doesn't hurt the show too much for now.

 


Hidan no Aria

I feel like J.C.Staff are starting to run out of ideas. Let see, a male lead who’s in danger by some force and has abilities to fight back, a short female lead who is protecting him, always angry at him, and is voiced by Kugimiya, Rie. I feel like I’m watching Shana but without the magic and replaced it with real life weapons. Characters are pretty one dimensional with lots of cliché moments like the girl offering food to the main character who has the hots for him and the usual tsundere character that Kugimiya plays a lot. Visually, the shows looks nice but it isn’t anything to write home about but fight scenes are mostly made up of lots of still images and speed lines. Overall it wasn’t an interesting show and I can’t see if its going anywhere with its simple story.

 



Denpa Onna to Seishun Otoko

If the visuals aren’t the strange part of the show, it is usually what’s happening in the show. It’s pretty much our main character Niwa Makoto ( Irino Miyu) living with his aunt Touwa Meme ( Nonaka Ai) and cousin Touwa Erio ( Oogame Asuka), a delusional girl who believes she is part alien. And so he goes out of his way to help her while finding out if she really is an alien after hearing reports that she want missing a long time ago. While the story is pretty simple, it is the dialogue that makes thing interesting with humorous moment of Makoto’s aunt asking him how she should respond to him in a cute way or the serious but strange way Erio explains things about her alien mission. The visuals are pretty strange with odd lighting designs, art style, and the cleanliness of it which all comes together in the end. It’s a strange show that any fan of Shaft may enjoy.

 


Deadman Wonderland

Talk about a mess up show. It didn’t took long for Deadman Wonderland to set its tone by murdering a class of 20 plus middle school students, with only Igarashi Ganta ( Paku Romi) surviving and being accuse of for that event. From there, he is sent in to an odd world of violence and conspiracy. I won’t give too much away as many small events reflect on what’s to come later on in the series. It would make sense for the visuals to reflect with the shows tone from the detailed character designs to the dirty colored environment and palette. This could be an interesting show but I do question will they be able to hold out for 12 episodes? We will have to see.

 



Ao no Exorcist

It’s a usual Shounen but with a nice twist with demons from, an international group of exorcist, and the fact that our main character, Okumura Rin ( Okamoto Nobuhiko), is the son of Satan. To make things even more interesting, Rin is will to become a exorcist, despite being part demon, to fight against Satan and avenge the death of his past guardian, Fujimoto Shirou ( Fujiwara Keiji). It’s a nice set up despite being a typical Shounen in some places. However, the development of Rin character and the fact that he is pretty likable from the beginning help move things along a lot easier. Visuals have a nice style to them with lots of animation from fights to the just normal conversations between characters. Both colors and lighting work well together to help flesh out scenes. So far things are looking good with this series and can only get better down the road.



Picture Highlights

 
 Thats a guy BTW
 Thats a guy BTW


 She sees dead people
 She sees dead people


 Does hair hang like that?
 Does hair hang like that?


 I can't blame him, I have trouble doing ties too
 I can't blame him, I have trouble doing ties too


 Do you mind, I'm studying
 Do you mind, I'm studying


 The image says it all
 The image says it all


 Cut them down!
 Cut them down!


 Yes, that is a cake coming out of her head
 Yes, that is a cake coming out of her head

 J.C.Staff, DO SOMETHING NEW!
 J.C.Staff, DO SOMETHING NEW!
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My Journey continues with day 4. We have here a pretty standard slice of life show and a sequel to a fully Yuri mind f*** show, sounds great doesn't it?

A Channel


As most people would imagine, K-on would set foot other shows to be like it in some way, shape or form. A Channel very much takes example of K-on formula but that isn't a bad thing. In fact it isn't trying to one up K-on or anything but it is an typical slice of life series with funny interactions and goof moments. We have our 4 girls Run ( Fukuhara, Kaori), the cheerful girl, Tooru ( Yuuki, Aoi), a short shy girl who is overprotective of Run, Yuuko ( Kotobuki, Minako), who is very much like Mio from K-on just replace her voice with Mugi :D, and Nagi ( Uchiyama, Yumi), glasses girl who so far shown to have some smart funny lines and an interesting voice which is do to having a new seiyuu voicing her. Visually, the show looks very nice with nice backgrounds, interesting use of lighting from early mornings to dim evenings, and while basic, cute character designs. There isn't too much to say about a show that is very much a typical Slice of life but what it had in mind is just that and not really trying to be nothing more then that, which is a good thing is my book.


Maria Holic Alive


The crazy Yuri anime is back. For those who haven't seen it, Maria Holic is about Kanako Miyamae ( Sanada, Asami) is living in an Girl only Highschool so she can get away from males since she detests them and prefers females as her lovers. However, she is keeping this motive a secret by taking orders by Mariya Shidou ( Kobayashi, Yuu), a cross-dresser who is enrolled in the girl only school because he made a bet with the school's past head, his Grandmother. From there, hilarity ensues as we part take in strange humor, interactions, and SHAFT's usual visual style and symbols. For those who haven't seen season it is best to do so as it helps make sense of why these things are happening to this poor but somewhat creep girl. To those who have, be happy that there is more Maria Holic.

This show is stream on Anime Network: http://www.theanimenetwork.com/Anime/Maria-Holic-Alive-Season-2/Info



Highlight Pictures



 Keep in mind, THAT'S A DUDE!
 Keep in mind, THAT'S A DUDE!


 Go for the boobs, What?
 Go for the boobs, What?
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