Alright, so my roommmate and I started the idea of having some circulating story about having a group or series following Black Lagoon. As far as the arc goes, things didn't start as I hoped as I didn't know how to react.
Ok, so I am certainly not sober and not prepared for this interaction on genetalia or converstaions of a reactionary series...My roommate and I started Black Lagoon with the first 4 eps (the first disc) and we both found out some interesting ideas about the series and its ideas about the use of alcohol, etc.
The first part is my roommates stopping to watch anime in the earlier days in order to improve thier thoughts and ideas of what is important and gain knowledge from the diescussion. From the current perspective, the idea of stopping is as unhealthy as the idea of shooying or killing an anime.
First off, my buddy Blake (my roomie who has had no previous anime experience except for with Afro Samurai) was blown away by what Black Lagoon had to offer. He first started off with my Beginner's Guide and then (with my provocation) started with the series itself. At the end, first off, he didn't think the story was going to go into an arc about WWII and Nazis; he was wrong. The Lagoon Company being charged with finding a painting seemed to be different then what he figured Black Lagoon's story would be like and spawn off of. He really didn't think the arc would go anywhere but he is interested in seeing where the arc goes. He likes the surprise in each episode (even the globalization of the South China Sea (as we are both business Majors)) but was not deterred by the semi-slow first 2 eps. He found the modern-day Nazi story random but is curious as to where the story goes.
In comparison, he found Afro Samurai to be more exiciting the whole time (as to be expected with a series that's only the length of a movie). He finds Afro as finding as a "one note" series, if you will, and feels Black Lagoon is moving with more story lines. He thought a totally different line of plot and thought took place and different themes are taking place just within Lagoon Company so early in the series and it will be fun and interesting seeing how the current plot plays out (I find it great how he decuces so quickly about he series).
Currently, Blake looks forward to seeing how Lagoon Company handles the situation and is even curious as to finding out what direction the story goes in with the Nazis. In a different direction, he doesn't know much about the difference between dub and sub but he feels a good job was done with the dub and is interested in seeing where the story goes from here on out. He points out from the article that he will be surprised about what will happen in the series and likes how the eps are different in how the story develops as it progresses. He thinks it will be interesing even for non-anime fans to watch just to see where the story goes and how everything plays out. From his perspective things are going in a different direction from arc to arc. As an American, he likes to see the different themes come into play. He's ready for another arc though as he feels checking out a sub version would be cool in order to get a better idea of how the story goes and see where the story goes from arc to arc.
As for relation to another non-anime fan (from his experience) he feels Afro is easier to recommend as it has American voice actors along with the edgier plot and animation. He at first wasn't interested in Black Lagoon but grew to have interest as I showed him what the series had to offer. From what he has seen he thinks anime is interesting just in the animation itself as just in reference to Afro we talk about how impressive it is to have it entirely hand-drawn (but Black Lagoon is cool, too).
As for what he likes about Black Lagoon, he feels the members are strong and is ready to find out more about their background. Mostly, he finds Revy exciting with her use of weapons and such. From reading the Beginner's Guide he is not exactly surprised from how the characters are but wants to know more with how the storytakes place in more then one direction. He is not deterred by the half-way intergections as seen in almost every anime (but he doesn't exactly like it either) and he feels it gives a good understanding as to how much of the ep is left.
With the diection of Black Lagoon, he likes how the story has gone in different directions but is left confused. If he keeps watching the series everything is going to come together and then even an American audience could understand where everything is going. Compared to American animation he feels the series is on par but was more impressed with Afro (to be expected) and Black Lagoon is everything he expected it to be. With a series like Black Lagoon Blake feels Americans look for a high-octane and action-packed series such as this to fulfill their needs.
Overall, Black Lagoon has gone different directions he didn't think the series would go but is excited to see how the story develops and how the characters grow. I think this experience went well and sorry about the sporatic directions this went. I can't wait for Blake's thoughts on the next disc!
Well fuckin' A! I just finished watching the Witchblade Blu-ray boxset and some of the extras which totaled to about 10 hours in the last 3 days (just shows how much time I have on my hands while at school). Here's what I got for y'all...
I of course have to start off with the animation. It looks great on the Blu-ray if you ask me. The Witchblade anime has a style all its own that Gonzo really brought to life in a way American animation could not. Nothing against the Witchblade comic of course as it looks good but standard comics haven't interested me. I noticed there was a consistent flow between detailed and less detailed animation for the characters based on their distance from the screen and whether they were the focus point of a scene.
Next are the characters. The single mother Masane Amaha is a good place to start. She is the current bearer of the Witchblade. She has no memory of her past and lives only to protect her daughter, Rihoko Amaha. She isn't the brightest but her determination and will make her a formidable opponent. Not to mention she can drink like no other and eat more than necessary and still keep a shapely figure. Her flaws and how she comes to terms with owning the Witchblade and working with Douji make her story all the more tragic and heroic. Rihoko is a cute little girl who always takes care of her mom. She was found with Masane along with documentation stating she was her daughter (later to be found false). Riko is also a good cook and goes everywhere by herself (dangerous). For being so young she deals with losing both her mothers
(her biological is Reina Soho) and finally ends up with her father. Then we have the freelance photographer, Yuusuke Tozawa. This guy has it rough driving various characters all over Tokyo while working on his big scoop (the real deal behind the murders and Douji and the NSWF). Pretty sure he had feelings for Masane (or, Melony, as he called her in reference to her large breasts) and he always went out of his way to dig up information and help the Amahas. Next is Reiji Takayama, Douji Group's Research Director (he later quit the company). This man evolved as the series progressed. He went from strong and demanding to caring and realistic. His hook up with Masane was funny and satisfying as he affirmed he would do his best to fulfill his role as Riko's father. Lastly, I cover the Neogenes, who are in fact inbred to be each other's mother, daughter, grandmother, and aunt (the same man's genes were used to create each one). These women or "sisters" get tested and fitted with Cloneblades in order to create the perfect woman who can wield the Witchblade. Despite how messed up their stuff is they are all damn good looking. Oh, I'll mention the Ex-cons and iWeapons since they are created with the bodies of the deceased (makes me think of an extreme version of Universal Soldier).
On to the story I guess...The comic revolves around a New York City Detective named Sara. Other than that I don't know much as I haven't read the comic. Now, the anime has a completely different story. In the 22nd century Douji Group and the NSWF were working together on their research of the Witchblade in order to copy its power. This ended in the Witchblade releasing its power and destroying much of Tokyo while killing countless people. The Witchblade was lost for 6 years until Masane Amaha showed up. Masane becomes employed by Douji and works to destroy rogue Ex-cons. Sometimes she even has to fight Neogenes as they attempt to capture the Wtichblade. The story becomes tragic as you learn that anyone with a Cloneblade or the Witchblade will be consumed or killed and turn to dust/liquid as death is the only escape from their bonds. The anime story works very well for itself and the Witchblade franchise as the Witchblade has been around for untold generations and moves from host to host causing destruction. Gonzo choosing this particular story was a good move and made the Top Cow creators very happy as the lead is damaged and has to deal with the consequences of her actions.
The Witchblade story originates from the founders of Top Cow Productions who all left Marvel Comics because they were fed up with not getting recognition and no longer wanted their creativity to be stifled. Thanks to this bold move the Witchblade comic was born. The anime came around a while after the comic as the creators wanted to do something new to expand the Witchblade franchise. And what better way than anime?! Top Cow gave Gonzo large reign over the Witchblade anime project. Well, except for an 8 page document stating there was to be no nudity (so that's why I'm kind of disappointed) and the lead wasn't to be raped or have tentacles and so on and so forth (sounds to me they were afraid it would become a hentai (which it could)). When Gonzo finished their work the creators were actually surprised that the franchise was sexed-up with a very different story but found it very good as they understood Japanese culture and enjoyed a lot a Japanese work themselves. Another interesting feature of the Witchblade Top Cow didn't consider that Gonzo added in was the mixture of pleasure and pain while fighting (like a form of masochism).
I certainly liked the series and I'll probably buy it sometime (I borrowed the boxset from a friend) but with the sad ending and no idea what will happen with the rest of the cast, the Neogenes, and the Witchblade I feel like there is a gaping hole in an otherwise different story. Again, I'm also sad there wasn't any nudity since the rating is TV-MA (only for language and violence). In closing I'll say thank you Top Cow, Gonzo, and FUNimation for this different and interesting story featuring a female lead and a mysterious weapon that knows not good or evil.
So the highly anticipated Black Rock Shooter has arrived..for a 52 minute romp! Pretty standard animation for the real world but the artistry for the "Other" world (as we do not know what this place is this is what I've dubbed it) blows the real world away. The fight scenes are cool as the characters' powers are played out. However, the struggle seems to be one-sided. Just what the hell is this "Other" world? It's empty yet full of barren lands and great stone structures (all to be destroyed). From the looks of the story it seems there is a triangle of attention and jealously between the three main characters. In the real world two of the girls go back and forth between the main protagonist's attention. While in the "Other" world the main girl (aka Black Rock Shooter) constantly battles the other self of her first friend in the real world. You also see glimpses of the third girl traveling toward the other two in the "Other" world. Just how do the girls get such powers? And just how did the girl disappear and where is she?
For some reason I get the feeling that the underlying tone is relative to FLCL. I say this because the "Other" world could just be an imaginary world where the girls duel to sort out their feelings because they cannot deal with them in reality. It seems to me the BRS story is really about adolescent girls coming of age..dealing with deeper bonds of friendship and the trials of jealousy that draw the line between being lonely or not. In the end the story is not what I expected but I'm curious to see where it all goes.
I've only been on Anime Vice since April so this may seem like a repeated topic for long-time users. More and more recently I've noticed new users on here who can't for the life of them write coherently. I can put up with run-on sentences and such but some people can't even make sense when there is no space between sentences and spelling and grammer are nonexistant. I like what some of the users are saying and the topics they bring up but is it that hard to use some writing common sense? So can I please get a little less suck out of your thoughts?
Well since my last blog was about the new and amazing guilty pleasure hit Highschool of the Dead (found here) I'll let you guys in on other anime I've been checking out. I'll go in alphabetical order to keep it simple (not like there are many titles with these letters).
First off is Vampire Knight. You can download the first episode (dubbed) for free on iTunes. I've currently gotten about 5 eps in and I can see a few directions for th
e story to go and none of them are exactly pretty. The concept is interesting enough with the mixing of vampires and humans while most humans do not know vampires even exist. The whole Night and Day Class thing is a cheap cover-up but it doesn't seem this series is supposed to make the viewer think. I do like the female lead as she is cute and acts tough but is really super caring and fragile. Zero (only name I can remember) I'm just not sure about since he's now a vampire (strange how only pure bloods can turn humans). I can see him surviving but count it just as likely he is offed. The pure blood the girl likes is a mystery to me. I don't know what he plans to do from scene to scene and it's irritating. Besides, I'd be like that guy who was the only one going after the female vampires. He must have the same thought as me that those women just have to know how to suck. I enjoy the animation as well so I think I'll at least watch the first season and decide what to do from there.
Secondly is Witchblade. I've been tempted to watch this anime for a while now but just never got in the mood. I'm also around 5 eps in on this one. I haven't seen an anime with a story quite like this so it's peaked my interest. It's definitely different since there is a mother and daughter on the run. Not like they are doing any harm but child services says the opposite. I figured from the start that there had to be something up with the organization. And hell, the old man uses his daughters just to reclaim the Witchblade! He
doesn't care about them at all. The Witchblade itself is cool as it converts from a bracelet to full-body armor. But just what makes the Witchblade so special and only usable by women? Obviously the company the woman works for is up to something as well..and I can see her falling for the photographer. The animation is pretty good, too. Along with that the chick is hot and even hotter using the Witchblade. Speaking of her using it, it looks almost every time she transforms that she has a bush instead of part of the Witchblade's armor. In continuance with this thought I say I keep waiting for the series to turn into a hentai. All the moaning and constant talk of violence and extacy gets my hopes up then I remember that it's a FUNi title and FUNi doesn't do that (nor do I think it ever will). I'll probably finish this series sometime in the future as well since a friend bought the Blu-ray boxset (I love my Blu-ray anime).
That's what I got today. Probably not my best work but I've been awake since 11:40 am yesterday morning and finishing this blog brings my time to 29 1/2 hrs. I'd like to hear what y'all have to say about these anime just try not to ruin the endings.