I laughed pretty hard at this situation. Shibasaki Roka is proving to be one of my most favorite characters in a very long time. Not only that, the resultant reaction is quite artful. It’s my new desktop background as well.
I honestly went into watching D-Frag. only on the basis that a specific meme had spawned from the original manga. Who knew I’d get a nice full-course comedy dish? Even the character design itself lends to comedy. There’s something about this art style and production that seems familiar to Gintama. I can’t seem to cross reference any shared staff, though. And goddamit, Funabori is an unexpected moé bomb. I thought I would’ve gotten my dosage only from Roka. It also isn’t helping that I was reeling from realizing who was voicing Funabori. At first, I was suspecting Toyosaki Aki. I doubted it. Then I checked, and it was her. I don’t know how long her name was listed as being Funabori. Man, I’m droppin’ the ball here. I keep forgetting Toyosaki has a pretty good range. Maybe they simply told her to try to avoid that minor raspy sound she tends to have. It’s usually obvious to tell it’s Toyosaki when she pronounces the “h” sound. Curse them for not putting Toyosaki in more interesting roles. I’d like to hear her as a domineering character with loud presence. (This is me potentially and completely forgetting a character I’ve just seen her voice as I’ve described.)
To balance out my enjoyment of the show, currently the series is relying on previous episode setups for its laughs. I can’t see the character specific humor yet. I’ll have to admit that many elements feel commonplace in the anime realm. It could be a pretty big damper to those who are always wanting absolutely fresh comedic material. It’s in familiar territory, although things like the maximum appreciation for Funabori-effort felt new. Perhaps only because her face when it happens is FUCKING MOÉ AS HELL. Other than that, the show is boob jokes, awkward faces, and Shizuka Itou. Life is pretty good, eh?
.. Okay, having Hanazawa Kana as Roka is also a major point.
I now refuse to tack on the ! at the end of D-frag‘s title. In fact, I’m now going to put a period before the name itself just so it’s similar to .hack//.
It’s also still weird to know that Brains Base is making this show. Due to Akikan. In fact, buy the DVDs for your loved ones. Because love hurts.
I finished watching the .hack//Quantum OVA last night — technically this morning — and nothing prepared me for how blown away by the visuals I’d be. Most of this surprise comes from having watched previous .hack// efforts and their lackluster production even during a battle. None of that was here. I’d like to attribute it to a director who’s never touched the .hack// universe, thus giving it a different spin than what the original staff had done, but there’s also the fact that it’s an OVA. The crisp animation led me to believe that they were using full-limited animation, which you can wiki if you’re interested in what it is. But it’s mostly 12-frame animation with just a level of quality that almost qualifies as all key frames. The action scenes are interesting and contain humorous choreography. With that said, I’m already itching to see the 2nd episode of this 3 part OVA.
I knew Kana Hanazawa was voicing a character in this, but didn’t know which one, so that didn’t prepare me for the kind of voice she’d use. And to my delight, it’s her happy and cheerful voice that I first adored when she was Sakura from Kaichou wa Meido-sama. But nothing prepared me for Ayumi Fujimura and Miyuki Sawashiro being thrown into the pot. All three of their voices together make my nutbladder glow from moentgen irradiation. Miyuki’s ungodly sultry and husky voice just excites me when she’s also given a character that acts a little cocky and tomboyish. HNG! And oddly enough for Ayumi Fujimura, it was The Sacred Blasksmith that got me to start looking for her, even though I’ve heard her earlier in the show Kyouran Kazoku Nikki.
Back to the OVA, I’m very happy how they show the meta side of playing an MMO/PWG. (Unfortunately, not many use the acronym PWG (Persistend World Game) even though it perfectly describes the modern movement of multiplayer games. I’ll save that gripe for a later article.) I grinned from ear to ear when I heard Iori speculating on a raw minerals crash within the in-game market and the potential opportunities to cash in on new, maybe unknown, drop table data. I smiled when I saw Sakuya/Asumi fishing inside the town; totally reminds me of when I was fishing moat carp in Final Fantasy XI for my Lu Shang’s.
.hack//Quantum is highly recommended if you’ve been a .hack// fan starving for a continuation of the universe, or you’re just looking for an “updated” OVA tapping the rather untouched space of fiction that is the meta-gaming world. It’s an internet gaming culture techno-thriller — words I expect to never be able to use again. Unless another .hack OVA project is funded. Yes, that’s right. I don’t want a TV series. I want another OVA.