Netflix House of Cards and Typical Shounen Handholding

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So recently, I’ve started watching the critically acclaimed Netflix series House of Cards. While only a couple episodes into the second season, I must say that it has caught my attention with an iron grip. The only thing that really competes with it this season is My Hero Academia (because Owarimonogatari is over), which could be considered a happy coincidence because it may have led me to notice some striking similarities between what are otherwise vastly different shows. When I started familiarizing myself more with tropes of the shounen genre, I didn’t expect to be applying that knowledge to much outside of anime…and yet, here we are. It appears House of Cards is more anime than I would’ve initially thought, which is fascinating in its own right, yet also mildly concerning as an intellectual. Whatever the case may be, however, I am to be certain of one thing: It is time for Cory in the House to step down, because there is a new king of anime, and his name is Frank Underwood. Continue reading

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Little Witch Academia (TV Series) Review

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Simple and clean, is the way Little Witch Academia is making me feel, telling the story of Akko, a young girl who’s dream to become a witch leads her to the magical academy of Luna Nova. It is here where she will comically fail, time and time again, as Akko is severely disadvantaged due to the fact she doesn’t come from a magical family. She was only introduced to the magical world by the extravagant shows of Shiny Chariot, a famous witch entertainer driven by her desire of inspiring magic in all who watch her perform. Chariot is looked down upon by her fellow colleagues because of her career path, and one day she just disappears, leaving Akko with yet another dream: to find her…and return to her the Shiny Rod which she finds in a forest and uses to escape a giant chicken monster with breath that turns anything it touches to stone. No need to go into further detail, it’s just a thing that happens. Anyway, it’s made obvious who Shiny Chariot is to the audience from episode one (not directly but it’s easy to put together), making it feel a little too stretched out when all the characters find out where Chariot’s been after all this time, three fourths of the way through the series. Continue reading

First Impressions of Anime Summer 2017

Princess Principal

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Steampunk Spy Girls, a.k.a. Princess Principal, is a fascinating show that left me with a lot to think about. As stories based around espionage typically do, this anime raises a lot of questions to captivate a viewer’s interest. Throwing into play the mystery of what characters you can trust gives off an extra layer of tension, one that causes me (and audiences like me) to become extra vigilant in hopes of finding sly details and slip-ups that reveal plot twists before they happen. The knowledge/presumption of a surprise however, can often leave you open to something even more unexpected. Shows like this tend to be a game of playing with an audience’s anticipation and expectations. They want to leave you a bread trail, but certainly not an easy one to follow, throwing in a bunch of twists and turns to confuse you, and waiting until the absolute end to make clear of everything. Continue reading

Finally, Some Character Development in Sakura Quest (Episode 16 Review)

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Sakura Quest, by many standards, is not an impressive show. It does a number of things poorly, from establishing characters and their motives to focusing on them individually in any effective way. These girls fall flat, not entirely because of their personality, but also by the way their personality was presented. Girls with backgrounds that lack uniqueness or interesting dichotomies between them, they all just get along without any entertaining complications and work on improving a town that no one, not even the townsfolk, really cares about. Before I get too into the weeds, the core cast of this show lacks what the elder side characters already have—a sense of belonging, strong character traits, compelling chemistries and dichotomies—and it all shines through by episode 16. Continue reading

Heroes, Witches, and Self Doubt

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Until just this last week, I haven’t binge-watched anime in roughly a year, and even then, I think I paced myself through most of Hanasaku Iroha. The last time I truly sat down and watched an entire season in one go…I can’t even recall. I hadn’t planned on getting back into the habit, but after starting one episode of both Little Witch Academia and My Hero Academia, I found myself unable to stop. Both series of similar titles had main characters that resonated with me in similar ways, and similarly made me want to root for each protagonist in such a resolute fashion. While cheering on the hero of a story isn’t an uncommon thing for me, I don’t think I’ve ever felt anywhere near this compelled before now. Continue reading

One More Thing Eromanga Sensei Doesn’t Earn

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I’ve already gone in-depth about how I believe the characters of Eromanga Sensei do not earn their titles of “published authors”, mainly because barely a sliver of their writing is shown to the audience for which they can use to judge for themselves. I’m not going to know you’re a “good” writer by simply someone telling me so, and that sentiment has been the heaviest stress on my suspension of disbelief from start to finish of this anime. That all being said, Izumi and the others not truly displaying their writerly skills while expecting the audience to accept their status as “published authors” isn’t the only thing Eromanga Sensei failed to earn. Continue reading

Final Thoughts on Anime Spring 2017

[Sorry it’s been so long since my last post. I had some friends come over from out of state, and while it was fun spending time with them, they totally fucked over my routine. I’m getting back into the groove again, and hopefully I can stay there once I do. Anyway, let’s talk about seasonal anime!]

Sakura Quest

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By far my most disappointing show of the season, Sakura Quest on its best day has been…fine. Just fine. Not even good, but not really bad, and I don’t plan on dropping it anytime soon. The thing is, as I explained in a post a little while back, its characters haven’t earned their place. They’re poorly establish and offered me barely any connection to latch onto, each failing to feel like they serve a legitimate purpose, their positions in the show appearing as if just pulled out of a magician’s hat. They have minimal personalities, little to no focused plot lines, and when they do have a sliver of something that could be considered “unique”, they’re allowed no time to let that shine. Continue reading