March 30, 2003

Mahou Tsukai ni Taisetsu na Koto - Series Review

Tonight I finished up watching Mahou Tsukai ni Taisetsu na Koto. It's definitely one of the nicest, mellowest anime shows I've ever watched. It's about a teenage girl who is an apprentice mage. The show takes place in a modern world where mages exist, but they report to a central agency. When someone wants magic done, they submit an application that explains what they want and it is assigned to a mage. The show follows Yume through her summer apprenticeship, where she learns a great deal about being a mage (despite some mis-steps along the way). There really isn't a lot of action or adventure going on here. It's a short simple show. I'm sure some might find it a little bit boring, but I really enjoyed it as a nice change of pace (especially after the nonstop action of the second half of Kiddy Grade).

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March 29, 2003

Record of Lodoss War

I just got done watching Record of Lodoss War. I'd heard a lot about it over the years and have some friends who really like it. But for some reason it just didn't work for me. I found the story to be interesting, but the pacing just felt kind of off to me. Like there could have been more story in there or something.

I'm glad I watched it, but I'm not sure I'll ever bother watching it again.

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There's going to be a second season of UFO Princess Valkyrie. I'm really not quite sure what I think of this news.

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March 27, 2003

The Undiscovered Country

I have a fear of endings. When faced with the last episode of a show I really liked, I freeze up. I delay, I procrastinate, I find something else, and I put off the big finale because, once I watch it, it's over. That's it, no more, close the curtains and walk out of the theatre. The show that I put so much of my heart into is finished and there won't be any more. It's an illogical, visceral reaction that I just can't help; on the one hand, I really want to watch those last episodes. I want to see how it ends, I want to see how everything's sorted out, and I want to see the big climax. But the problem with a climax is that, by its very definition, it's the last big bang before everything ends, and I don't want it to end.

I think the first time I ever heard this feeling vocalized was during Nadesico. Akito, the main character, mentioned that he had never watched the last episode of his favorite anime because he didn't want it to be over. At the time, I didn't really understand what he was saying (Nadesico was one of the first few full season animes I had watched at the time), but now I do. It's scary to have a show you really cared about, that you watched one episode at a time, speculating about future events in between showings, thinking about its good and bad points, and generally making it a part of your mind, stop.

Just at a glance, I have the unwatched endings to: Kiddy Grade, El Hazard, Gatekeepers 21, Kanon, Saikano, and Farscape, and that's not even counting shows that I delayed finishing for weeks or months but ultimately completed. It's not just serious character dramas that make me this hesitant either; the fact that El Hazard is the most delayed show on that list isn't because I disliked the series (it's more happenstance than anything else). The only real connection all those shows have is that they're all building towards (or in the middle of) a really messy climax.

Someday, I'll watch the last episode for all those shows. Someday, I'll close the book on each of them. I doubt it will be that long from now.

But it ain't gonna be today. I've got 19 episodes of Get Backers to catch up on, and when the last episode of that is released I can always add another series to my list.

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March 23, 2003

Gunparade March

I'm enjoying Gunparade march quite a bit for a show based on a video game. The only complaint is the show has a tendancy to go from quite lite to quite serious in two seconds time. I feel like I'm being continuously set up for a fall lately. But beyond that it's a pretty good show. Very character driven, which I like.

Posted by snooze at 03:13 AM | Comments (0) | Post a new comment

March 22, 2003

Ninja Tests

Naruto rocks. If you are worried about spoilers, run away now.

Naruto and his pals are taking a test to become the next level of ninja. The first part of it is a written test with all these insanely hard questions. Of course, being a ninja test there's more than one aspect of it. It's also a test of how well you can cheat without being caught. Because of course a master ninja would never get caught cheating.

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March 18, 2003


Bandai has announced the web site for their upcoming release of Please Teacher (originally known as Onegai Teacher). This is a release I can't wait for. I really liked this show a lot.

Ugs, I just watched the trailer though and I don't think they got the voices right at all. And I really don't think it gives a good feel for the show. It makes it seem much more like your typical 'boy marries sexy alien schoolteacher' type show. Which, IMHO, it isn't.

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The Sound of Crickets?

Well, I've know I've been a bit quiet lately (not sure about the others. I know Lyn's been busy with school, what's up with the k-chan? hmmm?). I've been trying to catch up on a few things I've downloaded. The show that's currently making me go hmm is Stratos 4. This was one of those shows I started watching and found myself enjoying, even though I wasn't sure that it had a ton of substance. Now, over the last few episodes there seems to be some interesting plot stuff coming into play. The one issue I have with the show is it seems to keep trying to have this light breezy feel to it, and more and more the stuff behind the scenes is anything but. I'm really wondering how well they are going to be able to merge the two feels.

Oh, and what's up with the talking cats?

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March 14, 2003


I once said that the only thing I was sure about in Kiddy Grade is that the main characters are really cute, and that isn't likely to change.

That was so close to a prophetically wrong statement that it's really rather remarkable.

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March 04, 2003

Central Park Media

Central Park Media has a few recent announcements of things coming out in the near future. The ones that jumped out at me specificly were:

  • Alien 9 will be all on one DVD
  • Animation Runner Kuromi looks to be one episode per disc, with just the first one listed (runtime 40 minutes)
  • Iczer 3 is planned for a winter 2003 release as a part of the Authentic Anime line, which means no dub

Woo, I so can't wait for Alien 9 to come out on DVD. And sometime around May I think the manga is due. Woo!

Posted by snooze at 07:30 AM | Comments (1) | Post a new comment

Hand Maid Mai

Hand Maid May is one of those shows that is so cute I couldn't help but love it. Yeah, it pushed the limits of the amount of fanservice I can take, but overall it was a fun show.

Now, the first episode of a 4 part OVA called Hand Maid Mai has been released. What do I think of it? I didn't hate it. But I think it lost a lot of the magic that the original series had. The main character, Ozu Hideo, is working as an editor for an adult video company. He comes home drunk one night to find three cyberdoll maids named Ai, Mai, Mei who all look like old girlfriend at different stages in her life. The first episode was lots of setup and a little bit of plot involving the maids helping him finish up making a picture. Bits and pieces of this were humerous, but overall the fan service and at least one of the scenes just didn't work for me. I'll give it a second episode when it is released, but unless things change dramaticly I won't be following this.

Oh, there are two cameos. At one point you see a certain girl leaning out her window on a ladder stretched between two buildings. And it appears that Sara is making some level of appearance (but I'm not sure just how much of one yet).

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I feel guilty because I can kill people without feeling guilty

I was just idly fooling around online when I got a pop-up ad for Noir. Damn, do those ad companies know me or what?

I'm not scared about this at all. As it is, I'm only mildly gratified that Noir is being advertised a lot.

This lack of terror scares me immensely.

Posted by David at 02:10 AM | Comments (0) | Post a new comment

March 01, 2003

A bit of catchup

So what's Gregory been watching lately? Here's a quick rundown.

  • Noir - Of the shows I've watched fansubs of, this is definitely one of my favorite. I was so happy when I saw that it had been picked up. Even though I've cut down my DVD buying for the moment this is one that I made sure to pick up the first disc of (so that I could get the box for the set). ADV has done a wonderful job with this. It really shows how amazing DVD can be.

  • UFO Princess Valkyrie - What to say about this show. It's kind of random, not too original, has quite a bit of fanservice. Oh yeah, and it has catgirls (and a gun that turns girls into catgirls). I'm really not sure why I like this show, but I do. Maybe it's a bit of wanting some light mindless fun after watching more serious things like Noir and Wolf's Rain. The theme song also kicks ass. Fun to check out if you want to let your mind take a vacation.

  • Kiddy Grade - A show I'm sure people are sick of me gushing about. This show just continues to keep me on the edge of my seat. I just took in episodes 17 and 18 and want more. We seem to be into the home stretch now storywise. But I have the feeling it's still going to be quite the rollercoaster ride for the rest of the show. The hardest thing to do is get people to sit down and get through the first few episodes. Maybe I'll see if I can get my friend Chris to download and watch this one.

  • Wolf's Rain - Only up to episode 6 on this one. I'm still liking this a lot. This is a show that seems to be really about character development. Though, I will agree with Lyn that this show is just oh so gay.

That's it for now. Stay tuned for next time when I talk about Naruto, Mahou Tsukai ni Taisetsu na Koto, .hack//legends, and Stratos 4.

Posted by snooze at 11:31 PM | Comments (6) | Post a new comment

h r 0 0

Just got the Haibane Renmei 00 DVD in. It contains the three-minute promo and eyecatch, which also happens to be included with the third DVD, as well as a mini-FAQ of the haibane renmei universe and the storyboards (conte) of the three-minute promo video.

The promo contains scenes which do not exist in the anime, some of which are quite beautiful.

When this comes out in the u.s. i'm sure these things will be included.

Posted by izumi at 06:28 PM | Comments (1) | Post a new comment