Thursday, September 18, 2008

Bunnies.


Going to attempt to do more short posts on whatever's popping into my mind at the moment. And this picture made me think of something that's always on my mind at some point during the day: Bunnies. They're so cute and adorable, and after coming to terms with the fact that its cool to admit stuff is cute and adorable about three or four years ago, I've become especially fond of bunnies.

Admittedly, this sounds like a joke, but not even. Seriously I'm going to sneak a bunny into EVERY comic or video game I ever do. Its going to be like Trigun, where every episode had that little cat in it.

Not just regular bunnies either...somewhere in School of Heroes (more about this sometime in the future) I'm going to sneak in a bad-ass swordsman bunny. Elsewhere I'll toss in a hot bunnygirl. Or a ninja bunny. Or a Kryptonian bunny. (If I ever get that job with DC...) The only bad bunny is an evil one, after all. (What a horrible concept.)

And, 'cause I want to spread my love for bunnies to everyone...more places where you can see them!

The comic series Usagi Yojimbo. Twenty-two volumes and counting.

The anime series Getsumen To Heiki Mina.

And the anime series Kagihime Monogatari Eikyuu Alice Rinbuyoku.

Read and watch, then adopt a bunny today!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Fall Anime Picks

I just can't end on a dark note. I mentioned in my last post that I miss when things were new, which is why I get SO excited when there's a new anime series starting because everything's new!

So, first off, let's start with the list as a whole, found in this picture here:

With that out of the way, let's begin. As always, in attempt to suck out some of the negativity that is usually found on these places, I'll only be mentioning the stuff I'm actually interested in.

Hakushaku to Yosei

Synopsis*: The story is set in 19th century England and centers on a “fairy doctor” named Lydia. Her life takes a 180-degrees turn when she meets a legendary blue knight count named Edgar and his crew. He hires her as an adviser during his quest to obtain a treasured sword that was supposed to be handed down to him by his family.

Opinion: Okay, so admittedly I'm a little wary of this series. They mention hunting down swords and quests and I get excited, but then they show a pretty boy main character and some chick in a dress (how often do girls in dresses kick ass in anime?) and I begin to wonder if it'll be a fun adventure romp through a steampunk-type world, or an incredibly boring "romance" story. (I'll point out my biggest problem with romances at the bottom of this post.)

Going past five episodes? Pssh...I have the distinct feeling I won't make it past the second.

Casshan: Sins

Synopsis: Madhouse's remake of the science-fiction Classic, Shinzo Ningen Casshan. The original anime series recounted the story of Casshan, a cyborg who rises against the robotic armies that have subjugated all of humanity.

Opinion: I never saw Shinzo Ningen Casshan. But I DID see the four part OVA 90's remake of Casshan on Sci-Fi back when they showed anime on Saturday mornings. Incredible series and still one of my absolute favorite anime, even if I barely remember it. A full series by Madhouse could possibly be one of the most kick-ass things to come to television all year--quite the feat given how awesome this year's been for anime. (Macross Frontier and the second half of Gundam 00 S1 are classics in the making.) Can't wait to see what the first episode looks like.

Going past five episodes? Presuming they don't fuck up something? Hell yes.

Clannad: After Story

Synopsis: Season 2 of Clannad. Adapted from the After Story arc from the visual novel that is a continuation of Okazaki and Nagisa's story.

Opinion: I don't know what on Earth made me pick up Clannad Season 1. I...won't say I hate them, but I'm really not a big fan of slice-of-life anime. They usually consist of events that I either have lived through or can live through and thus they don't interest me much. (Actually usually I've lived through better stuff.) Still, I checked out the first five episodes of this series and I already know I'm hooked. Tomoya Okazaki makes for a hilarious protagonist--possessed of a personality rather than Milquetoast Personified like in most "harem" (loathe as I am to label this series with that) series, and while I'm pissed he got with the most boring girl of the series (why not the super-outspoken tsundere or the bad-ass martial artist girl...hell, I'd even take the loli...at least it'd be original), I still definitely want to see the second season of this.

Going past five episodes? ...As soon as I get past the first five episodes of Clannad, yeah, sure.

Kannagi: Crazy Shrine Maidens

Synopsis: An art student named Jin Mikuriya carves a statue from the wood of the Kannagi tree only to have the statue come to life in the form of a goddess, who has now taken over the statue. He and "Nagi" work together to destroy the impurities that are gathering in the town.

Opinion: Anytime a series like this is made and manages to avoid getting bogged down in too much fanservice, I end up liking it. They explore (though obviously not too heavily) Japanese myth and folklore and I always find that intriguing, as its so different from Western stuff. I am curious how the "art student" helps destroy squat though, as he looks to be just a normal high school student, and precendent says he'll just be comic relief that maybe discovers a few impurities by pure cosmic coincedence while the character with the real power does all the work.

Going past five episodes? At first? Doubt it. But eventually, presuming it works out, definitely.

Kurogane no Linebarrel

Synopsis:
Fourteen-year-old Kouichi Hayase’s life has always been a mediocre one, if not dismal. However, those days of being bullied by classmates and escaping to a fantasy of being a hero are put to an end when a certain “accident” which almost claimed his life changes him. 2 years later, Koichi is a diferent guy. He’s stronger, smarter and more violent than he ever could dream off. And then, the thing that affected him that deeply appears again: LINEBARREL, the giant humanoid robot that was the reason for his injuries in the past and has a deeper connection with Koichi than he can imagine. Koichi is thrown into a world of responsibilities and consequences along with other robot pilots, which are known as Factors…

Opinion:
I can't tell if this is going to be a Real Robot or a Super Robot series, but it'll be a mecha series, and that's what matters. (Me like-a the giant robots.) I tend to love Gonzo's art, and I understand this just may be their last series so one would think they'll put their all into the thing. Anyways, so far we're 3 for 3 for good mecha series this year (for all its faults, Code Geass is still a good series), so its not a bad idea to hope for 4 for 4, right?

Going past five episodes? Depends on if the main character is as villainous as he looks. If so, nope. If not, then why not? Loves the mecha.

Macademi Wasshoi!

Summary: Magician Academy revolves around Takuto Hasegawa, who attends a magic academy that is not marked on any map. During a summoning spell exam, he accidentally creates a girl named Tanarot, who happens to hold enough magical power to destroy his country, but fortunately Tanarot professes undying loyalty to her "creator".

Opinion: Ugh. SO torn on this. When I hear the word "magic academy" (or any kind of academy that teaches....I did this joke before, on another Anime Pick thing...read it there), I jump at the series. ...But DAMN that picture sucks. But the person who did the visual novel this series is based on did Scrapped Princess and that's one of my all-time favorite anime series. But again, that picture sucks PLUS they're getting a little more free with the term "adaptation". See Rosario + Vampire.

Going past five episodes? Damn...I sure as hell hope so, but I'm doubting it.

Michiko to Hatchin

Synopsis:
The title’s Michiko is a free-willed “sexy diva” who destroys a supposedly inescapable prison fortress, while Hatchin is a girl fleeing her strict foster parents. The two join forces on an improbable escape to freedom.

Opinion: 'Cause its just insane enough to turn out decent. (And possibly 'cause I didn't meat my loli quotient, I don't know.)

Going past five episodes? ...In a couple of ages, after I've had broadband for like two or three months, sure.

Mobile Suit Gundam 00 2nd Season

Synopsis:
2312 A.D. Four years have passed since the final battle between Celestial Being and the UN Forces. Humanity, after having established the Earth Sphere Federation, forms an independent security force, Arrows, separate from the formal Federation army to further unify nations and the will of mankind. But the reality is the inhumane oppression of anti-government powers, doctrines, and ideologies in the name of unity. Setsuna F. Seiei, after surviving the battle four years ago, has decided to once again fight with his Gundam.

Opinion: Watching Gundam 00 was one the biggest highlights of 2007 and 2008 for me. Gundam 08th MS Team aside, its probably my favorite Gundam series and now, three weeks before series start, I'm in much the same mood I was in just before S1 ended...."hurry up and take off Code Geass so I can get back to my Gundam!!!"

Going past five episodes? Past five and all the way to completion in episode 27, folks. No question.

Rosario to Vampire CAPU2

Synopsis:
By a bizzare coincidence, Aono Tsukune has accidentally gotten himself admitted to a youkai acadamy, a school attended by monsters. Just when he thinks he’ll run away from there, he meets the beautiful girl Moka and his mood turns ultra happy. However, she transforms into her true form when the rosary on her chest is taken off, she’s a super vampire!

Opinion: I feel obligated to watch S2 because I watched S1 and didn't hate it. That said, I'm still a little pissed because as I understand it Gonzo took a decent plot and replaced it with tits and pantyshots. Now I love tits and panties as much as the next guy (more than if the next guy's an anime fan, 'cause we've established that they're allergic to panties), but couldn't I get that AND the plot?

Going past five episodes? Past five? Shit, I may not watch episode 1 depending on my mood.

Shikabane Hime -AKA-

Synopsis:
This story is about an exorcist girl called “Shikabane Hime” (Corpse Princess). Her name is Makina Hoshimura, an undead girl who hunts down 108 corpses in order to go to heaven.

Opinion: Ah, 108. The magic number of the East. I always have some small amount of fun when they work that in. And this is a pretty cool premise, but this IS Gainax, the anime studio known for making a series I could care less about (Gurren Lagann), and making a series whose second half I totally despise (Neon Genesis Evangelion), so its possibly they could fuck what should be a relatively straightforward action series up. But its an adaptation of a manga, so I can hope they won't.

Going past five episodes? If Gainax doesn't fuck it all up, sure.

Tales of the Abyss

Synopsis:
The anime takes place in the world of Auldrant, a planet composed of “Fonons”. It is a material energy found in all things. Long ago, a new kind of Fonon was discovered, but great chaos was brought with the finding. By using this newest Seventh Fonons, one could read the future. Luke von Fabre is the son of Duke Fabre of the Kimlasca Kingdom at 17 years old. Naive and impulsive, he is forbidden to go out of the house. This is due to a kidnapping seven years ago where he lost his memories. However, Tear Grants, a mysterious girl, suddenly appeared in Luke’s mansion to kill her brother Van Grants for a reason unknown. As she stumbled unto Luke, they reacted with a magic explosion and they were transported out of the mansion. This is the start of the journey as Luke discovered many uncomfortable truths of his existence and the world…

Opinion: Anime adaptations of RPGs tend to suck. The only one I ever saw that DIDN'T suck was Star Ocean EX, and that one ended up sucking at the tail end when they were forced to alter the ending to some BS crap and cut out the latter half of the video game due to time constraints. Any decent length RPG usually can't be done in 26 episodes, but once again I'm willing to take the plunge and give it a try. Specifically because its a fantasy series and I LOVE those.

Going past five episodes? Yep. Gotta see how this latest game to anime adaptation works out.

To Aru Majutsu No Index

Synopsis:
In a world where science clarifies supernatural powers. In a huge college that has power development in its curriculum. To a resident high school student, Kamijou Touma, a pure white sister appears. She calls herself “Index” and says that sorcerers are chasing her. Thus, Kamijou Touma enters the world of the occult, with his one special skill: The Imagine Breaker, a skill possessed by his right hand that negates all magic, psychic and divine powers--even his own good luck.

Opinion: I've read some of the manga adaptation of the light novel (wow this is getting complicated). I love what I've seen already. This and Gundam 00 will be the two series I follow without fail this season. Can't wait to see what happens in it, as this is one of the shounen series that has an incredibly interesting premise. (Like Double Arts and Mx0...two manga that were sadly canceled recently...ugh. Meanwhile One Piece lives on...)

Going past five episodes? Like I said. One of the two series I follow every week.

Tytania

Synopsis: The capital of the empire of Euria is attacked by the empire of Tytania, a much more powerful enemy that controls a large part of the galaxy. The story follows a soldier who flees the Tytania empire and seeks refuse with the rebellion force that rose up since the battle.


Opinion: Watching Macross Frontier has got me wanting to check out another space opera series. ...Trouble is, without mecha, Space Opera series tend to be boring as all hell. The art, the characters--everything. Within two or three episodes I'm yawning and looking for something else to watch. Hoping Tytania will be different but not holding out much hope.

Going past five episodes? I hope so, but if its boring I'm bailing in three eps or less.

Vampire Knight Guilty

Synopsis: A sequel to the Vampire Knight anime.

Opinion: I thought VK season one was okay, even though I saw more than the first five episodes. Even though Zero looks like he'll play whipping boy to Kaname (who gets the girl AND won't be turning into an uncontrollable monster that has to be killed), I guess I'm willing to stick it out for the full 24 episodes.

Going past five episodes? After I finish Vampire Knight at some point, sure.

Yozakura Quartet

Synopsis: Hime is a superheroine. Ao can read minds. Kotoha can conjure up anything with the right word, and Akina...well, he's just a regular guy. But together, they protect the town of Sakurashin. But that's not easy, as the town faces demon dogs and other supernatural threats!


Opinion: Japanese superheroes kicking evil supernatural tail. Why wouldn't I want to watch this? Though its quite curious as to why they chose to make a character like Akina, who will probably end up playing the same role as the guy in Kannagi will. (Scroll back up.) Oh well. I'm actually excited about checking this out.

Going past five episodes? Of course! How can I not support my fellow Heroes??


Now, what I was going to mention earlier, as far as romance series...they all tend to suck. And that's not 'cause I lean towards action series, but because the endpoint of all romance anime tends to be the characters beginning a relationship. WTF. That's just the beginning of a series to me. It would be more interesting to me to deal with the relationship itself.

Still though, I'd forgive that problem if they were to ever make the first H-GLBT anime. Without marginalizing any particular gender and/or sexual preference. (In other words, don't make the guys or the girls into one-note jokes, and don't turn people of a particular preference into the one-note stereotype.) If they actually managed that I'd watch whatever it was in a flash. The resulting depth that would come from dealing with the requisite web of characters all trying to date each other would make for an excellent series.

But I bet a series like that is 10-20 years away, so in the meantime I'll be ignoring the romance series that come along.



*All synopsis are courtesy of ANN or Wikipedia.