Monday Check-In: July 17, 2017 – Teekyu is back!

Tomarin is angry after losing money at a pachinko parlor in Teekyu season 9

I watched a few more new anime series last week but not as many as I wanted. Teekyu returned for its ninth season with a Tomarin-focused episode and an ending credits sequence depicting the girls as more realistic-looking teenagers with a portion where the camera pans across their towel-draped bodies. I guess the ending credits are a parody of other anime ending credits that have similar shots of their female characters but Teekyu’s credits unnerved me just like those other ones do…

I saw the first episodes of Anime Strike series Made in Abyss and Princess Principal with some online friends and enjoyed both of them for different reasons. Made in Abyss had beautiful landscapes and a fun adventure story setup with its characters. I liked Princess Principal for its dark, steam-powered London setting and background music directed by Yuki Kajiura; its soundtrack reminded me of Kajiura’s previous action series scores including Puella Magi Madoka Magica and Noir. Continue reading

Monday Check-In: July 10, 2017 – July Anime Premieres

Mari Fukami during a quiz club demonstration in Fastest Finger First

The quarterly rush of new anime premieres has come around again. I’ve watched the first episodes from a handful of new series: Fastest Finger First, A Centaur’s Life, Welcome to the Ballroom through a Twitch stream sponsored by Amazon’s Anime Strike channel, and Aho Girl.

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You Have “Failed”

As of late, I have been running into a lot of fighting academy shows, where people of varying degrees of talents and abilities are shipped off to this particular institute or that particular school to hone their particular fighting skills, in that they may defend this country or do battle against other schools for honor and glory and taiyaki. It’s like being in “The Goblet of Fire” but without Cedric Diggory. (Hmmmm……….this is like déjà vu all over again). Much like “Sky Wizards”, “Asterisk War” and/or/perhaps/either “Bahamut”, this one, Rakudai Kishi no Kyabarurii” (“Chivalry of a Failed Knight” or “The Heroic Tales of the Failure Knight”) continues in that same vein. Continue reading

“Flower” Power

This is one really strange movie, in that you are uncertain what the reality is and what it all means, starting with the title. As I have said, if you can’t decide on a title, there are bigger problems afoot. “Garakowa: Restore the World”, (also known as “Vitreous Flower & Destroy the World”, “Garasu no Hana to Kowasu Sekai” or “The Glass Flower and The Destroyed World”) plunks you right into the thick of things, with nary a map or guidelines as to what is reality or what reality is. Forget Google Maps, or you’ll be trying to find that Chipotle in the middle of the Hudson River.

Dual (left) and Dorothy (right) are two programs who reside within the Box of Wisdom. Their job is to enter the various worlds, containing the memories of people across many timelines and deleting worlds that become infected with viruses. They spend a lot of time talking a caliber of philosophy and what they do, as we see them killing off a virus or two.

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Trying To Stay Motivated As A Thirty-Something

Mitsune’s shirt: “Don’t trust anyone over 30” (front cover of Love Hina manga volume 4)

Today is my 31st birthday and I’m in a contemplative mood.

Right now, I feel both connected to contemporary goings-on and disconnected from them: interacting with friends and other enthusiasts through Twitter and blogs but still not very familiar with video bloggers popular with younger groups of fans. In the past two years, I have lost interest in attending many convention eventsgiven up on keeping pace with new anime simulcasts, and reminisced about bygone and still active anime bloggers. There are hundreds of things I want to watch and read but I often succumb to indecision about which things to start watching or reading next. I experience moments of self-doubt where I ask myself “why am I still doing this?” and “what do I have to offer?” Continue reading