Fuuka & Dealing with Clichés

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When it comes to fictitious storytelling mediums, there’s something I commonly hear from people who enjoy such things that tend to rub me the wrong way. I presume it’s because I take a much more individualistic approach to everything I see and do, but it always befuddles me when someone tells me they have a certain aversion for a genre. Now, I rephrased it more delicately here, though in reality it usually comes out as “I hate (blank genre)”. This…confuses me at first, because why would some hate a broad categorization? And wouldn’t such a definitive statement imply that one has seen everything there is to see in said genre? As only then could one come to such a conclusion about such a wide variety of things. To use a simple analogy, it’s like saying you hate Puerto Ricans because you met one before and they happened to be an asshole. Continue reading

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Minami Kamakura High School Girls Cycling Club, Episode 3

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Girls Gone Bike starts this week off a while after where it left off the previously. In the episode before it, the girls were about to depart on a cycling expedition to Enoshima. Skipping the journey, the show now picks up with Hiromi and Tomoe browsing school clubs. They don’t have much luck in finding a good extracurricular, as typical sports do not seem to be up their alley, and the swim club didn’t end well either (due to Hiromi’s inability to swim). During their time trying out swim club however, the instructor bothers to mention that there’s a difference between the swim club and swim team. Swim team is obviously more competitive, while swim club is mainly dedicated to those who just enjoy swimming. Continue reading

First Impressions of Anime Winter 2017

Konosuba 2

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I’ve already asked this on Twitter a couple of times, but I want to repeat it because I still haven’t really gotten an answer: Is it just me or is this season of Konosuba way funnier than the last? I say this because I find myself laughing much harder and more frequently in these past two episodes than I feel I had in the entirety of season one. That isn’t to say season one was bad. In fact, that set up was entirely necessary, as without it season two (especially the first episode) could never had hit as hard as it did. There were so many hilariously references to their past misadventures that I couldn’t keep count, utilized in the brilliant way of trying to provide a defense for Kazuma’s character, but ultimately backfiring and proving himself to be a perverted, panty-stealing delinquent. Continue reading

Minami Kamakura High School Girls Cycling Club, Episode 2

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This week on Girls Gone Bike we’ve gotten through the initial introduction and are now being gradually introduced to the full cast. I like the speed at which this is going so far, and I’m happy the show still hasn’t given up its delightful slice of life aspects. The girls, primarily Hiromi, manage to get into silly predicaments that resolve fairly peacefully. Four of the five girls in the bike club have already been discovered, and while their motivations aren’t particularly strong, the way they’re drawn to cycling isn’t what needs to be compelling. The show builds itself up to be more about discovering the joy of cycling rather than jumping in to the professional level. It’s a sports anime that takes a much more laid back path, not relying on more commonplace “high stakes, high drama” approaches. And as a novice, I really like that a lot. Continue reading

Otaku in Anime: Kirino Kousaka

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In anime, I find the portrayals of Otaku to be quite fascinating. Often written by Otaku themselves, this personality trait that originally started in a derogatory sense (and still is to some) is now the most likely type of character to resonate with fans of anime (probably). It’s certainly one of my favorite characteristics, being that Otaku characters are more than just something to relate to: They are a means of which creators can show their understanding and admiration for genre and culture through. When written exceptionally, Otaku characters are a beautiful love letter not only to fans, but to the culture itself. While there is no definitively “right” or “wrong” way to write creatively, there are some Otaku characters out there that can be so poorly realized, it honestly begs the question “Was anime a mistake?”. But then you just shake it off and think “No. Anime wasn’t a mistake. Subaru from Re:Zero was a mistake”. But he’s not really what I’m here to talk about today. No, instead I’d like to focus my attention on an orange-haired girl from Oreimo. Continue reading

Minami Kamakura High School Girls Cycling Club, Episode 1

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Let’s cut right to the chase: Minami Kamakura High School Cycling Club is a ridiculously long name and I will not be referring to it as such in anything but the titles of my episodic reviews. Alternatively, I will be using what I believe to be a much more suiting name: Girls Gone Bike. If a better nickname for this show decides to present itself sometime in the future (although I doubt one will), I am open to changing what I call it. Until then, here is episode 1. Continue reading

Anime of the Year 2016

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(It’s not Yuri!!! On ICE)

Before I get into what I believe to be the “Anime of the Year 2016”, I’d like to give honorable mentions and also point out a disqualification. March Comes in Like a Lion is exceptional, but it was not in the consideration for this prestigious award because its season was not contained within 2016. The show is a 22 episode run that goes right into 2017, and so it will be eligible for nomination in that year rather than the year it started airing. As for honorable mentions, I’d be remiss not give Flip Flappers, Sound! Euphonium 2, and Yuri!!! On ICE some much deserved shout outs. They are all fantastic in their own ways and worthy of my recommendation. Continue reading