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October 2015

Onsen Yousei Hakone-chan Episode 1 – First Impressions

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Touya is a teenage boy who lives by a well where a guardian spirit is said to reside, and has the responsibility of cleaning the area and giving offerings. One day, he accidentally drops the steamed bun he was offering into the well. A moment later, out pops Hakone-chan, holding the steamed bun and claiming to be the master of the well.

Having heard his wish to become closer to Haruna-nee, Hakone blackmails him into leading her to where there are more steamed buns. Along the way they just happen to meet Haruna-nee, and Hakone-chan, saying she’ll help Touya with his wish, spits some kind of Squirtle style water blast at him, pushing him forward. And where does he land?

On Haruna-nee.

More specifically, with his face in her boobs.

Ha. Ha. Ha.

If I’d read the genre labels more closely, I would have seen that this is a Seinen.

Judging by the amount of girls in the OP, I’m expecting boobs to be a recurring theme. That’s really not my kind of humor. I’ll probably end up dropping this one.

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Concrete Revolutio: Choujin Gensou Episode 1 – First Impressions

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What comes to mind when I think of Concrete Revolutio? Well, lots of things. Like aliens, mecha, superpowers, a witch who comes complete with a Sailor Moon-esque transformation scene, and a little creature with an old man voice that lives in said witch’s cleavage.

Yeah, it’s a bit all over the place, really.

Oh, and add two different timelines to that list.

The first timeline takes place when our heroine, Kikko, is a teenager. I think she’s fifteen? She’s working in a cafe where an alien spy just happens to be having secret dealings with an important scientist. And somehow she gets roped into helping Jirou, a complete stranger, apprehend this alien. What follows is a strange mash-up of magic and aliens, which basically serves as an origin episode, introducing Kikko to what Jirou does in the Superhuman Bureau – protecting innocent superhumans and punishing dangerous ones.

The second timeline is randomly interjected into the episode a couple times, and takes place five years later. For whatever reason, Jirou has become a fugitive, and the person trying to apprehend  him is none other than Kikko. Well, not that she can seem to decide whether she wants to shoot him or confess to him. Jirou declares that he won’t return to the Superhuman Bureau, then makes his escape, leaving Kikko to feel sad about things.


Concrete Revolutio is certainly a bit muddled up and rough around the edges. But it’s still got my attention.

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Shingeki! Kyojin Chuugakkou Episode 1 – First Impressions

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The first episode of SKC has come, and it’s the first anime so far this season that I feel met my expectations, if not exceeded them. It’s one of the cutest, funniest anime I’ve seen in a long time. I didn’t stop smiling once from start to finish.

SKC is a parody very strongly based on the original anime. It’s both familiar and new.

Eren wakes up from a strange dream, to find himself late for his first day of school, and he and Mikasa race to get there in time. Along the way they (literally) run into most of the members of their training squad, before all arriving at Shingeki Middle School. With Eren hurriedly leading the way, they accidentally run into the titan half of the school. Eren, completely undeterred by the fact that the entire school is giant, leads them into a classroom where the titans assault them with giant stationery. They are then found by the janitor Hannes, and shown the way to the human school.

Somehow they are right on time to begin homeroom, where their teacher is the scary drill sergeant that first trained Eren’s squad. The anime then reenacts the scene from the original where the characters are made to salute and introduce themselves, including Connie’s backwards salute, and Sasha’s eating in inappropriate situations. When Eren introduces himself he declares his wish to “chase out all titans” because they had taken “something important” from him.

Before you know it it’s time for the entrance ceremony, and while the students are waiting to hear a few words from their new headmaster, who should appear at the wall but the colossal titan! The students run in terror, desperately trying to save – their lunches???

Yes, in this chibi world the titans aren’t human-eating monsters. They’re more like schoolyard bullies that steal lunches. And that is a crime that chibi Eren cannot forgive. He attacks the colossal titan with a broom but fails miserably, watching as his lunch is eaten before his eyes.

I think anyone who enjoyed Attack on Titan can enjoy Shingeki! Kyojin Chuugakkou. Although I can’t imagine someone who hasn’t watched the original enjoying this parody anywhere near as much.

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Kagewani Episode 1 – First Impression

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What drew me to Kagewani were the genres: mystery, supernatural. Those two things are certainly present. But dear God, what did I just watch?

The backgrounds are rather realistic, while the characters, with their obvious black outlines, stick out like sore thumbs. It’s definitely not an art style that attracts me, but I managed to basically get used to it during the 8 minutes I was watching. The problem is the way the characters move. Dear. God. That is very, very wrong.

If you can overlook that, though, the first episode was actually quite suspenseful and engaging. A group of three guys try to film a fake dinosaur sighting at a lake in a fenced off forest. Great idea, right? Until they find themselves faced with real live monsters, who definitely don’t want to sit back and be filmed. One by one the guys are killed off.

We then see Banba sensei, who I believe is our main character, standing just outside the broken fence. Just as he is turning to leave, a broken camera falls from the sky, landing just outside the fence line. When he moves to pick it up he suddenly clutches his face in pain as the strange marking by his temple starts to move.

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And that’s Kagewani episode 1! Although it’s quirky (to put it nicely) I found myself enjoying this one. Just as long as the characters don’t have to move too much.

Noragami Aragoto Episode 1 – First Impressions

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It’s the long awaited first episode of Noragami Aragoto! Three cheers for Yato! Hip-hip Hoo-

Wait a minute. Isn’t this kind of boring?

I’m a great lover of Noragami, so this is a bit distressing for me, but I have to say, I feel like this episode didn’t have any impact.

It might just be that the focus is on Bishamon right now, which makes sense, given that Aragoto is based on the Bishamon Arc of the manga. Bishamon isn’t really a character that I like that much.

The characters that I do like – Yato and his crew – are all very uninvolved so far. They’re still going about their everyday lives. School. Work. Mucking around at Kofuku’s house. Studying. Getting scammed into buying dubious lucky items. You know, the usual. Only Yukine has somehow managed to make friends with one of Bishamon’s Shinki, who luckily doesn’t know who Yato is.

The plot development is all coming from Bishamon’s side, as we see the toll that having so many Shinki is taking on her. One of her Shinki, Kugaha, is already obviously starting to plot something.

With all the conflict focusing around Bishamon and her Shinki, I’m really not sure how much I’ll be able to enjoy this season. My hope is that once Yato gets drawn into the conflict things will really liven up.

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Lance N’ Masques Episode 1 – First Impressions

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Before this anime began, I really had no idea what to expect. There’s very little information given in the genres and summaries for this anime. All I really knew was that it would be about a knight and a Loli. I found myself half believing that it would turn out great and half believing it would be a flop. Having watched the first episode, I don’t think this will be a stand-out of the season. It may not do too badly though.


Our protagonist is Hanabusa Yotarou, a young knight who wishes to live a normal life, but who is so well trained that his body automatically moves to help ladies in distress. Unfortunately this leads to him being mistaken as a pervert. Well, that’s not the only thing that leads to him being mistaken as a pervert. He just has bad luck like that.

Yotarou seems to have run away from whatever kind of life he was living as a knight, and now has a group of three cute girls searching for him; one of whom is a horse, one of whom is a maid, and one of whom is kind of an idiot. That’s about all I know about those three so far.

So our protag just seems to be wandering around, with no clear aim, until he saves the life of the Loli ojou-sama, Makio. Meeting him again without realizing that he is the same knight who saved her, she naturally invites him to stay with her, without knowing anything about his circumstances. Because anime.

Makio is a cheerful, hero obsessed girl who lives alone in her mansion, with only the maids who leave at the end of the day. Her father, her only remaining parent, lives separately from her, and seems to have ordered all the maids not to become close with Makio. Even so, there is one maid, Yuhua, who seems to care, even just a bit. But she’s definitely got something else going on, other than just being a maid, so who even knows what her motivations are?

Thugs in black suits then try to kidnap Makio, and Yotarou of course saves the day.


Obviously this anime has it’s fair share of cliches. To be honest, I’m just glad that it doesn’t seem to be a fan service heavy show, given that the cast is largely female. Although the protagonist is often mistaken as a pervert, especially by Yuhua, he doesn’t actually do anything to deserve that. (Well, except that when he’s in knight mode his speeches are a bit weird and cringe-y.)

I’m quite interested in the character back stories too, actually. Although right now they seem quite cliche – the Loli who has been mysteriously isolated, and who will most likely turn out to be the princess that Yotarou’s dad told him he would one day protect – there’s a chance that we’re being lulled into a false sense of security. (Fingers crossed. I want this anime to go places.) Since everyone’s cards seem to be getting laid out on the table quite quickly, we might by-pass the cliches quickly, and be able to break some new ground. That’s my hope.


Well, overall, there isn’t anything here that I particularly like, but it’s still early days. I’ll keep watching, and keep my fingers crossed that Lance N’ Masques can take us in an unexpected direction.

Summer 2015 Anime Roundup

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As of today I have finished watching my last ongoing anime from this season, and so I think it’s time for an overview and rankings.


#8 “Million Doll”

Million Doll started with an idea that set it apart from other idol anime: idol blogging. Unfortunately, the blogger ended up having less screen time and less influence than I’d hoped for, and ended up feeling to me like an insignificant character. There was a lot of potential here for an interesting dramatization of blogging and internet culture that just got pushed aside in favour of focusing on the idols’ journeys and feelings. This anime also really needed full length episodes. Very little could be done in each episode, and after finishing this anime I feel as though nothing actually happened at all.

#7 “Wakako-Zake”

I don’t really have any strong feelings about this anime. There isn’t anything in the way of a plot here, it’s completely episodic. Still, I found it entertaining enough, and those interested in Japanese cuisine might find it worth a look.

#6 “Wakaba*Girl”

So, with this all my short anime from this season have landed in the bottom three. I suppose they just can’t tell as compelling a story as series with regular length episodes. Still, Wakaba*Girl was cute enough and funny enough that I enjoyed watching it, most of the time. Although there were definitely times when I just wasn’t feeling up for a cutesy, slice-of-life anime like this.

#5 “Sore ga Seiyuu!”

Almost a week after finishing all my other anime, I’ve finally drawn the curtain on Sore ga Seiyuu! It was a fun way to get some insight into what Japanese voice actors do, and what pressures they face. I liked this anime, but I feel like it hasn’t left a lasting impression on me. Still, it was a good show.

#4 “Ranpo Kitan: Game of Laplace”

My mum would probably expect this to be my favourite anime of the season, since she seems to believe that I only watch gory horrors. But that’s obviously not the case. I’m kind of undecided on this anime. It has a lot of elements that I do like – a moody detective; mystery; going inside characters’ thoughts as they reason things out; an awesome ED theme; and yes, gore. But there are also plenty of things that don’t work for me – that crazy S&M chick whose name I’ve forgotten; yaoi vibes between Kobayashi and Hashiba; and just a general sense that something is lacking, even though I have no idea what it is.

So overall, I guess I liked Ranpo Kitan. But again, I don’t think this anime will stand out to me at all in a year’s time.

#3 “Aoharu X Kikanjuu”

AxK was a funny, feel good anime – most of the time, anyway. There were definitely times when it got weighed down by the fact that the main characters were all keeping secrets, but I guess you need to add conflict somehow, right? Although I feel like this could have been done by focusing more on the survival game aspect, and battling other teams, rather than focusing on personal conflicts and constantly dredging up the past. Ah, this is starting to sound like a negative review, right? I actually really enjoyed this anime, it’s just easier for me to point out the things that are wrong with it. Haha. But I enjoyed Hotaru’s deranged sense of justice that easily transformed into bloodlust, and I really like Yukimura, even though he’s a pervert.

#2 “Charlotte”

Charlotte, eh? Even though I’ve given this the silver medal, I feel like it’s actually the biggest disappointment of the season. I’m not quite as disappointed in it as some people seem to be though, since by the time it ended I’d kind of come to terms with the fact that it just wasn’t as good as I’d hoped it would be. I was really hyped for Charlotte, since I originally expected it to be like Clannad. You know, a sad harem anime. And of course it’s not like that at all. Still, after the first episode I could see it turning out to be a really good anime, even if it would never make me cry as much as I did for Fuko. Then things started going downhill straight away, with a few wasted episodes right at the beginning. When the plot finally started to develop it was like a switch had just been flipped out of the blue. I didn’t have too many problems with the actual plot, but I guess I just set my expectations too high from the beginning. In spite of being disappointing, it was still a good anime.

#1 “Gakkou Gurashi”

Gakkou Gurashi (aka School-Live) can safely be called the surprise of the season. It wasn’t all that surprising for me, since I was already reading the manga when the anime was announced, and already knew the twists that had everyone else going off the deep end. Still, the changes that the anime made, including making Taroumaru an important character, made it interesting for me to watch as well. Not to mention that the entire thing was just really well planned out. The impact was real. I definitely cried during the final episode.

Well, I am a major sook.


Overall this anime season has left me feeling a little flat. Although I enjoyed most of the anime I watched, I’ve come out the other side kind of unimpressed.

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