Hitsugi no Chaika – 05

torture

I’m really diggin’ this show. And it’s not just because the design behind Akai-Chaika. Nor is it because Akari’s violent BroCom interruptions. There’s so much just going right, I’m having a hard time trying to pay attention to any failings the show does have.

It doesn’t come off as an absolute twist in the plot, since it was discreetly shown early in the episode, but the reveal of a second team acting independently from the original Chaika trio is interesting enough for me. I like these sorts of reveals, because they don’t  readily answer and close questions faster than they can spawn. In fact, sometimes we’re better off not knowing. The amount of interpretation and fan written thoughts, observations and creations easily start to outnumber official material. Having that bit of mystery just helps it out. It’s also incredibly entertaining, if we’re going to go by just how much fan-made stuff gets created.

It’s probably not an original thing. Even I, who hasn’t read much literature, didn’t have much of a reaction. (Or maybe I just don’t react strongly.) But it’s been way more interesting than the recent entries concerning adolescence and coming-of-age. I’m not against watching anime with that theme (e.g FLCL, Toradora), but I always seem to be falling back to that crutch saying: “It’s all in the execution.” Hitsugi no Chaika so far, doesn’t suck at all. If you’ve been waiting to see if it’s worth watching, you’ve got 6 whole episodes to find out.

Also, Chaika Bohdan’s breasts are the perfect size. That’s is all.

Yeah, I’m behind the release schedule for the show. Doesn’t help that I’ve been trying to juggle Diablo 3, FFxiv, and Minecraft during my free time.

Hitsugi no Chaika – 05

Stay Gold, Koko-Chan.

Half way into this season I stumbled across Golden Time. I saw the first four episodes or so and then stopped watching it. It’s not that I didn’t like it; it was more like I was having an “I’m too busy playing Pokémon to watch anime” phase. I remembered the last episode ended on a cliff hanger, so I recently picked it up again. I ended up marathoning this anime until I was current on the episodes that had been released. Safe to say the more I watched this anime, the more I enjoyed it.

I don’t know what it is with me and romance dramas, but I really like this one for a number of reasons. The comedy in this anime isn’t too bad. There’s a number of scenes I can recall that made me chuckle. The story itself is interesting as well. The main character, Tada Banri, suffers from the overused cliché that is amnesia. But rather than seeking out to regain his past, he just carries on his life and starts fresh. I normally tend to ignore the main character, but Banri is a main character that I can at least appreciate.

Continue reading “Stay Gold, Koko-Chan.”

Stay Gold, Koko-Chan.

I propose a speed limit on dumb love.

yukarin_banzai

I don’t know if this honestly bugs people. No, I know it does. But it’s hard to get a good read on something like this. My general question is: How far does a character’s relationship perception have to fail before one gives up? Or alternatively, how many characters and series did it take you to really get annoyed? While I was watching Ore no Kanojo to Osananajimi ga Shurabasugiru, Natsukawa asks Kidou, “Do you know if there’s anyone Chiwa likes?” and even tries to reaffirm that he doesn’t. The obvious and boring response from any male character is being oblivious to the advances of the girl in question. He follows up with much confidence: “No way.”

Really?

How much anime do I have to watch with this uninspired reaction? It would have been different if I couldn’t anticipate the exact wording, with even the exact Japanese and the intonation, but Kudou Eita miserably fails. Is it really that difficult to detect love? Perhaps one needs to put forth effort to have their love radar properly working. In Kudou’s case, I say that his anti-love stance is flimsy, but was enough for him to fall into his own mental trap. Because he firmly plants himself as anti-love, he believes that no one loves him either. (Or he’s just dumb, according and convenient to plot.) There’s going to be an episode explaining his anti-love parade. For sure. I just hope I haven’t fallen into my own mental trap of “maybe it’s a worthwhile reason”.

It really almost ends up in a loop of dumb logic. Main character is asked if anyone likes him. An obvious love interested has been shown previously, and the MC waves his hand in dismissal. If the MC does know, it’s not true and it was delusional. If the MC does know, and it is true, the girl is mistaken in her target. But being mistaken is the crux, and thus she slowly comes to love him. I have personally not seen a case of the MC being asked “Do you know if anyone likes you?” and seriously considers if any girls may have taken a fancy towards him, and thus spits out evidence: “Oh, wait. Now that I think about it…”

But then what will be the next line?

“No! No way, she couldn’t love me. That’s impossible. I secretly love her too! But will she love me back?” No, she doesn’t jerkwad. She’s gonna abuse you and take advantage of you.

Toradora circumvents this relatively cleanly, but I still remember there being some residual annoyance. It’s smart enough that the initial love setup follows through until the first confession AND afterwards, which is where the show really picks up. Taiga quite quickly confesses to Kitamura. But yeah, there was also that huge factor of how many episodes were left. You don’t really expect the series to end after they shove a love confession in the third episode and finish it right there. The love motivations behind all the characters in Toradora are not flimsy as other series’ characters. You see the different kinds, from each one, and how they mesh and interact into what is essentially the Love Trainwreck of Youth. It shows the flaws of love at a young age. Not the flaws of poorly written love from a young author. Maybe the fact that the intended demographic that should be enjoying this show fully is not what I currently am. Or am I using the word demographic in poor thought, and that I’m just getting angry, older and jaded like everyone else?

There’s so many possible variations that OreShura could-have-should-have done. I don’t care if the MC doesn’t know that someone already loves him. At least write him better lines.

I guess this show was finally the one to get up in my grill. Just how dumb to love do these male leads have to be? The “subtle” hints that girls leave are in your field of vision, dammit. Ugh. And don’t get me started on that Sakamaki Izayoi from the new show Mondaijitachi ga Isekai Kara Kuru Sou Desu yo. That 2-bit punk better lose in some way or else I’m gonna drop that show faster than my Lann can kill a giant polar bear.

.. But Yukari Tamura is in OreShura. I must continue to watch. :V

I propose a speed limit on dumb love.

Gintama in widescreen.

I finally managed to watch all of Gintama up to episode 201. While not as taxing as a marathon of Legend of Galactic Heroes, I often had to refrain from watching continuously due to two unavoidable factors from prolonged exposure to Gintama: vomiting from laughing too hard and having a permanent grin etched into my face. I realize that only 201 episodes are currently available. There’s no way in hell with that episode I’d believe they’re done. In which they’re not.

But I’d like to discuss something very Gintama related. The show hasn’t been in widescreen format. As far as most of us are concerned, it doesn’t need to be. But thanks to burgeoning technology, I rarely encounter a 4:3 monitor or TV these days. Should Gintama be broadcast in 16:9 come this Spring 2011 Anime Season, I’m expecting a lot of size jokes. A lot.

I’m also a fan of Kugimiya Rie, who unfortunately is typecast into using a certain voice that often pisses off some people. Sure, it can be grating. But if you need something to remind yourself that Kugimiya can do voices other than her “annoyingly high pitched” one, go watch Gintama episode 153. It’s the sleepless episode, and listening to Kagura doing dead pan deliveries is quite funny. If that won’t work.. well, just go wash your ears and eyes with gar or something.

You’ll definitely need to if you intend to watch Hidan no Aria, another show with Junji Majima and Rie Kugimiya. (Oh look, it’s Ryuuji and Taiga from Toradora.)

Gintama in widescreen.

Toradora OVA

I just got wind of the OVA being included in the blu-ray box set for Toradora. And for some reason I wasn’t that excited for it. I like Toradora for it’s execution, as I believe it did it right. One of the larger contributors I believe to be it’s length. But I guess one could also argue that 25 episodes is kind of a golden number. Any more episodes and it would have dragged on, and any less would have uneven pacing. I just hope this extra episode isn’t just a tack-on, or one of those to pander those who would like a different pairing.

Oh well. It’s not normal for me to be this negative about it, so I guess I’ll just have to wait and see for myself what this Toradora OVA will give us.

Toradora OVA