February 26, 2005

My take on Full Metal Alchemist

So, all along, snooze has been raving about FMA. Just due to a busy schedule, I didn't make time to watch it, but I've been showing it at my anime club, and we just reached episode 16.

Yep, it's an excellent show. High production values, entertaining characters (I love Armstrong), good blend of drama, action, and humor. I don't care for the second set of opening and ending themes as much as I did for the first, but you can't have everything. They did a good job of ramping up the intensity, where it didn't hit so hard at first, but a few episodes in, wham. There's one episode in particular -- you'll know it when you see it -- where I was thinking, "Okay, it's obvious where they're going with this, but they wouldn't... oh, wow, they did... and now... what?? AUGH!"

On the one hand, I'm tempted to zip ahead and watch more episodes, but on the other hand, I'll be seeing them at the club anyway, so I should probably use my personal time on other shows... So Much Anime, So Little Time!

Posted by elthar at 12:14 PM | Comments (1) | Post a new comment

February 20, 2005

Fullmetal Alchemist on Cartoon Network

I've been meaning to post about this for a while. I've been watching Fullmetal Alchemist on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim. First off, I have to say that Funimation has done a great job with the dub for this show. It really feels like they have put a lot of work into it. I'll still always prefer it in Japanese, but this is bearable enough that I don't mind watching it (especially with my friends who have issues with reading subtitles and keeping up with what is going on).

The other part of this I'm enjoying is how much I am picking up on during my second rewatching. There are tons of minor details, lines that were seemingly throwaway, glances between characters that are so much more meaningful now. They really did script this show out quite well. Now I just wish they'd start doing a late night showing from episode 1 sometime soon, so that more people could get hooked.

Posted by snooze at 10:17 AM | Comments (0) | Post a new comment

February 19, 2005

What Greg's Been Watching

Well, when I haven't been completely sucked into World of Warcraft, I have actually been watching quite a bit of anime. Here's some of what's been watched this weekend.

  • One Piece - Finally got to the end, or just about the end, of the Crocodile storyline. Holy heck was that brutal and long. But overall it was good. Most of the major fights only took two episodes, and there was lots going on at the same time also. So it kind of balanced out.
  • Naruto - Just got through episode 122. I've read just a bit beyond this in the manga, so I know what is coming. But at the same time I'd forgotten so many of the details of it that it's almost all new. I just keep remembering small details o what is coming and so I'm waiting for that part.
  • Bleach - I finished up episodes 18 and 19 today and am now anxiously awaiting 20. This show is just too much fun. I really love the way they mix action and comedy and drama together, at times just slamming them up against each other. I've read a bit of the manga of this, but am nowhere near this point in that. I'm sure they are not telling exactly the same story, but that's fine with me. This is still enjoyable.
  • Air - Yet another show based off a game. This one is very quirky. I'm still not quite sure what I think about it, but I love the characters. Esp the dog named Potato who goes pikopikopiko all the time. I want one of my own.

That's it for now!

Posted by snooze at 10:42 PM | Comments (0) | Post a new comment

February 15, 2005

A review from the archives (circa 1998)

Armored Trooper VOTOMS

Chirico Cuvie pilots an Armored Trooper, or AT, vehicle for the Melkian army. Then he is assigned to a special mission to a mysterious asteroid, where he makes a discovery that changes his life forever.

Moody and incredibly violent, I find this series to be quite captivating, despite the late-1970s styling and sometimes clumsy animation. Chirico makes a good tormented anti-hero, and I'm eager to see events unfold. (I've seen three of the four "stages.'') I would recommend it to mecha-heads and war movie fans.

On the Some/None/Lots scale:
Sex/Innuendo: A little
Skin: Some
Violence: Lots
Profanity: Some
Posted by elthar at 10:38 PM | Comments (1) | Post a new comment

February 13, 2005

Girls Bravo revisited

I watched the first couple of episodes of Girls Bravo when they first hit the wire, but stalled out because they were clearly censored in an irritating way -- conveniently-placed opaque "steam" (often filling much of the frame), cutaways to an irrelevant character, and so on. So, when I got a chance to check out the DVD release, I did so in the hope that I'd be less annoyed.

The good news is that yes, it's vastly less irritating with the censorship gone. Whether the fan service thus revealed is in the best of taste or not varies, but at least you get a bit of payoff for the heavily contrived plot. The bad news is that the subtitles on the version I got were pretty miserable, both in content and execution. The good news is that my Japanese is good enough to follow along quite handily with the subtitles turned off. Your Mileage May Vary.

The first episode of the second season is out, as well -- and this time, there's no censorship. Perhaps that's because they realized that, with the plot element of a giant octopus molesting swimsuit-clad girls, it was pointless to worry about a few nipples... (To be fair, the theme of a maiden entangled by an octopus has a long history in Japanese art. But it was still an eye-bugging thing to see in a TV show.)

On the whole, Girls Bravo -- first season or second -- has little going for it other than the fan service, some over the top slapstick, and some engaging (if not very original) characters. But if that's your thing, check it out.

Posted by elthar at 01:35 PM | Comments (0) | Post a new comment

Lame-iro Ryuukitan

Lime-iro Senkitan is one of the few series I gave up on in disgust. It appeared to be some H-game spinoff regarding a bunch of girls controlling fighting robots during the Russo-Japanese war, naturally all vying for the affections of the young man brought in to be their teacher.

The problem wasn't that it was based on an H-game, the problem is that it was lame. Of course the characters were cliched, but the plot was also hackneyed, the battle scenes utterly predictable, the "romance" wooden and unsexy, and there wasn't even much in the way of eye candy.

Just recently, I saw the first episode of Lime-iro Ryuukitan Cross come across the wire. I gritted my teeth and gave it a look-see to see if it was any less pathetic than its predecessor.

If anything, it's worse. Avoid at all costs.

Posted by elthar at 03:14 AM | Comments (0) | Post a new comment