User Reviews

Current and Classic Animation!
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1HalfRanma
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User Reviews

Postby 1HalfRanma » Tue Dec 23, 2014 4:19 pm

The place to post your more in-depth reviews. Newer or older, brilliant or terrible, all anime are worth reviewing, and it would be nice to get your insight on a new favorite or an old classic.

I'll provide an example format, but feel free to tweak it how you like. :) And please, avoid spoilers!
Don't let yourself be blinded by fear or anger. Everything is only as it is. We should just use our conscience to escape from what we can - Nui, Mushishi.

http://myanimelist.net/animelist/1HalfRanma

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1HalfRanma
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Re: User Reviews

Postby 1HalfRanma » Tue Dec 23, 2014 4:21 pm

So, I'll be reviewing a personal favorite of mine: Cowboy Bebop.

Info - 26 Episodes; Aired 1998-99; Directed by Shinichiro Watanabe; Studio: Sunrise

Story - In the year 2071, mankind has spread out across the stars, leaving behind an earth left desolate by a hypergate explosion. Spike, an easy-going drifter, and Jet, a hardened cyborg, have teamed together to form a bounty hunting operation aboard their spaceship, The Bebop. They scour the galaxy picking up criminals with bounties on their heads. Along the way, they pick up the unusually intelligent dog, Ein; the femme fatale, Faye Valantine; and the eccentric but brilliant child, Ed.

This is a largely episodic anime, but don't let that put you off. Each episode manages to deliver a complete story that rarely feels rushed or filler. Peppered throughout the individual adventures are episodes where you learn more about each character, filling out the whole crew. Despite the episodic nature of the show, there is a theme that runs throughout, culminating in a satisfying end that rounds off each character arc nicely

Characters - From the laid-back and cool Spike, to the tough but kind Jet, the independent con-artist Faye, and the hyper and optimistic Edward, the main cast from Cowboy Bebop are unforgettable. No typical and predictable anime tropes here; each character has their unique strengths and weakness making them relatable and lovable. The side characters, while never around for too long, add their own feel to each episode, complimenting the rather small cast brilliantly. The only downside on this account is the main villain of the series, Vicious. Despite being integral to the anime's ending, we know relatively little about his background. Still enough to get a satisfying arc, but more could have been said.

Animation/Artwork - The artwork in this show was amazing for the time it aired, and it almost holds up today. Naturally, it has aged a little; you won't get the shine and colour that you might get from a top notch anime today, but the character and set designs remain unique and distinctive. If I had to sum up the look of Cowboy Bebop in one word, it would be: stylish. The futuristic setting is offset by a worn, aged look to everything, reminiscent of old west America. An almost noir style give the show a jazzy vibe, oozing with cool. The animation is smooth and fluid, even rivaling more recent anime, and certainly head and shoulders above anything at the time.

Sound/Music - At this point, I must make a confession. I have only watched the English dubbed version of Cowboy Bebop. But you know what? I'm not sorry for that. The dub for Cowboy Bebop was a breakthrough for the English dub industry, setting a benchmark that has hardly ever been reached since. Every voice fits the character perfectly, with a special mention going to Steve Blum as the voice of the lead character Spike. Even the director himself admitted that the English dub surpassed the original. Now that's a vote of confidence if I've ever heard one!

The soundtrack to Cowboy Bebop may be the best one out there, not just because of the quality of the music, but also for the perfect match in style to the show. It's not you typical anime style, primarily consisting of jazz and blues tracks, but the soundtrack is possibly the most memorable aspect of the anime, and it wouldn't be the same without it. This is Yoko Kanno on top form, right up there with her soundtrack to another great: Escaflowne.

Final Verdict - Cowboy Bebop is truly one of the greats of anime. It's a good choice to introduce people to anime, as it avoids many of the typical tropes that bring other anime down. It may have a slightly more western feel, but it still represents the best of the classic anime style. It has a brilliant sense of style and is terrifically enjoyable to watch. It is a masterpiece that has stood the test of time and continues to draw people into anime fandom. For all that, I give it a "Must Watch" - 5/5
Don't let yourself be blinded by fear or anger. Everything is only as it is. We should just use our conscience to escape from what we can - Nui, Mushishi.

http://myanimelist.net/animelist/1HalfRanma

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Logan
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Re: User Reviews

Postby Logan » Sun Dec 28, 2014 12:14 am

I like the set up for this! I'll find an anime that I want to do a review on and give this a try!

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Re: User Reviews

Postby Logan » Fri Jan 02, 2015 12:25 am

I'll be reviewing a personal favorite of mine: Love, Chunibyo and Other Delusions

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Info -
Episodes - 13 (Season 1)
Aired - Fall 2012
Director - Tatsuya Ishihara
Studio - Kyoto Animation

Story - Yuta is starting his first year of high school. To him it is a clean slate, a fresh start, somewhere he can forget his embarrassing past and look forward to a bright future. In middle school he suffered from what's called "Chunibyo", a state of mind also called "8th grader syndrome", where he believes that super powers are real and acts them out in everyday life. He even names himself "The Dark Flame Master". He vows to put all of this behind him when he starts high school.

On the first day of school he finds a private area with no one around and banishes his Chunibyo with a verbal declaration. Unfortunately for him, a girl in his class named Rikka sees his outburst. It turns out that she is Chunibyo as well! Rikka declares that she and Yuta are soulmates and acts out her Chunibyo around him in the hopes that he will return to his Chunibyo ways. Rikka grows attached to Yuta, and while he finds her behavior annoying at times, he accepts her for who she is. This is a story about acceptance; accepting who you are and accepting your past.


Characters - This show has a great blend of characters. Yuta is a kind and likeable main character with his only main knock being that he's a bit dense at times. Rikka is a blast as a character. Her antics and imagination is what separates this show from the crop. She doesn't like confrontation, which leads her to avoid it at many moments during the show, but that she is extremely endearing and makes you smile all the time. The next character, Nibutani, plays the role of the kind, beautiful, mature classmate who everyone looks up to and wants to be with. It's all a facade, though, as she also used to suffer from Chunibyo, going by the name "Mori-Summer". She adds some good comic relief but also helps to progress the story forward at many points. Rounding out the cast is their sempai Kumin, who has an obsession with naps, and Dekomori, a girl who Rikka met on the internet who is a year younger than her and also is Chunibyo.


Animation/Artwork - The art of this show is spectacular. While it won't blow anyone away, it's crisp, clean and presents a wide palette of colors. The animation is very well done. Character movements are fluid and there is no choppiness to any other animation at all. Few, if any, stills are used. The best part about the animation, though, is the over the top fight sequences. I won't ruin anything, but when anyone goes Chunibyo, the action gets epic. It's really quite incredible.


Sound/Music - This show is currently only subbed at the time of this review (I'll add a review of the shows dub when I receive my Bluray). The voice acting is executed very well, with each voice lending itself well to the type of character they are playing; i.e. Dekomori is genki and over the top and her voice only reenforces how annoying of a character she can be.

The music in this show is well done. The composer, Nijine, does a good job of matchint the music to the flow of the show and enhancing the scenes that are important without overpowering them. The sound design is also very well done.


Final Verdict - Love, Chunibyo and Other Delusions is an amazing anime. It takes the classic boy meets girl romance show and gives it a fun and wacky twist that leads to an endearing story of accepting who you are. With a fun and diverse cast of characters and beautiful art and animation, this show is truly a delight to watch. If you haven't given this show a look, I can't recommend it highly enough. So go watch it now! You won't regret it! It is certainly a must watch.

- 10/10


Here are some screen shots:

Spoiler:
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Last edited by Logan on Thu Oct 08, 2015 2:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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1HalfRanma
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Re: User Reviews

Postby 1HalfRanma » Fri Jan 02, 2015 1:46 am

Well, you've convinced me! I'll have to give it a watch. I normally love Kyoani shows, I imagine this will be no exception.
Don't let yourself be blinded by fear or anger. Everything is only as it is. We should just use our conscience to escape from what we can - Nui, Mushishi.

http://myanimelist.net/animelist/1HalfRanma

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Logan
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Re: User Reviews

Postby Logan » Fri Jan 02, 2015 10:46 pm

I'm glad my review was able to sway at least one person! :D I'm sure you'll love it, its pretty great :)

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Re: User Reviews

Postby Chris » Sat Jan 03, 2015 10:54 am

Logan there is more to that show then just acceptance. There is definatly a character study of the elements of the psychological traits involved with chunibyo. What is involved and why some have it.
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Re: User Reviews

Postby Neko » Sat Jan 03, 2015 11:23 am

Nice review, Logan, This is one of my favorite animes. I will have to spring for the Blu-Ray .

My word for the look of the show is lush. Rich colors and environments, the lovingly depicted old school. Gorgeous character designs, bright-eyed and somehow more solid seeming, more physical than what you usually see in anime, the mastery of figure drawing in the animation is a joy to behold! These aren't stick figures they are made of flesh and muscle, they have weight and substance.

It is a Romantic-Comedy, and it is about acceptance, as you say. Acceptance of others, acceptance of the past, but it's also about denial, and Chunni works well as a plot device to have this play out. Chunni as a coping mechanism, and how, while some coping mechanisms may not be particularly socially acceptable, they may have merit. But it also provides an opportunity for unhealthy escape. In the anime, as in real life, there is not clear consensus on where to draw the line.
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Re: User Reviews

Postby Logan » Sat Jan 03, 2015 12:03 pm

Chris wrote:Logan there is more to that show then just acceptance. There is definatly a character study of the elements of the psychological traits involved with chunibyo. What is involved and why some have it.


I agree it's definitely about more than just acceptance. If you asked me though what the main point of the show is though I would point to the idea of acceptance :) I'm not saying that that's the only thing it talks about, that's just the main point I wanted to get a cross in my review :)

Neko wrote:My word for the look of the show is lush. Rich colors and environments, the lovingly depicted old school. Gorgeous character designs, bright-eyed and somehow more solid seeming, more physical than what you usually see in anime, the mastery of figure drawing in the animation is a joy to behold! These aren't stick figures they are made of flesh and muscle, they have weight and substance.

It is a Romantic-Comedy, and it is about acceptance, as you say. Acceptance of others, acceptance of the past, but it's also about denial, and Chunni works well as a plot device to have this play out. Chunni as a coping mechanism, and how, while some coping mechanisms may not be particularly socially acceptable, they may have merit. But it also provides an opportunity for unhealthy escape. In the anime, as in real life, there is not clear consensus on where to draw the line.


I like the term lush when describing the look of the show! Thanks for a new word to add to my arsenal of descriptions :D

Denial is definitely a point of emphasis for the show. Denial goes hand in hand with acceptance in the case of this show, I think :) Overcoming denial and accepting the past is definitely an important message of the show :)

Thanks for the feedback guys! I've got a lot of work to do when it comes to reviewing shows well :)

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Re: User Reviews

Postby Neko » Sat Jan 03, 2015 1:29 pm

You started a conversation! You done good!
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