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Iaboo, Youaboo, Weallaboo for Anime!

BEAT

LOUDSKULL
(DUDE/BRO)
BUT IT'S PRETTY GOOD.
THE SECOND SEASON IS KINDA AIMLESS SO FAR, BUT I CAN DIG IT AS SORT OF OFFICE COMEDY SET IN A WORLD WHERE EVERYTHING IS TOTALLY NUTS.
 
As a Nightow joint, I think I do like Kekkai Sensen more. It's got all of the zaney charm and whacky shenanigans, but is not nearly as burdened by serious story business and oppressive religious themes. That's just a matter of taste though.
The directors for S1 and S2 are different people so that leads to different feels. S1 has a decent amount of anime-original characters/stories in it to give the season a bit of a more cohesive feel. S2 is - my understanding - a little more true to the comics. Both approaches I think work well, and are indicative of the kind of creative talent they are. Rie Matsumoto (S1's director) is an absolute star, and it's honestly been bewildering why she hasn't done more work in the industry since. I wonder if it might be burnout, or a hostile work environment, a shift to an adjacent industry, or a shift in life priorities. I think everyone ought to give her other big show - Kyousougiga a shot. It's really good. And if you watch it, and S1 of Kekkai Sensen, you'll probably begin to spot a lot of commonalities between the two that are more attributable to her quirks as a creator which is a lot of fun.

 

q 3

here to eat fish and erase the universe
(they/them)
Migi & Dali is amazing, it has a delightfully campy mixture of horror and surrealist comedy, along the lines of some of the best parts of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure. Same original author as Haven't You Heard, I'm Sakamoto, who sadly passed away at a young age not long ago.
 
I'm Giving the Disgraced Noble Lady I Rescued a Crash Course in Naughtiness has a title that is far too long and far too horny. I was going to skip by it completely until some reviews said to give it a chance, so with reluctance I did. And I like it! Charlotte was accused by her fiance, the second prince of some kingdom, of treason. She somehow runs away and by chance collapses near sorcerer Allen Crawford's manor. After rescuing her, hence the first part of the title, he finds out her backstory and forces her to become his live in maid (by basically threatening suicide in front of her.) When he learns that she has had a very, very bad life and has some pretty deep emotional trauma, he decides to teach her how to be naughty. By that he means lazing around, eating sweets and expressing her emotions.

So is it good or gud as the parlance is around here? After two episodes, I am going to keep watching so I'm going to say yes. The show reveals that Allen relates to Charlotte due to being betrayed himself three years prior. Allen is also just a good guy, despite trying to put on air of being an antisocial. After watching it, I realize the title in intentionally misleading which adds to the humor of the show. Adding in Tomokazu Sugita, of Kyon from Haruhi and Gintoki from Gintama fame, as Allen is a bonus and helps sell an already funny premise.
 

Daikaiju

Rated Ages 6+
(He, Him)
I wonder if that show is a lowkey condemnation of the Japanese societal tendency to put up with varying levels of crap treatment and repress any feelings about such.
 

Bongo

excused from moderation duty
(he/him)
Staff member
I've read the manga of that. It's very sweet, and it quickly drops the shallow "overly suggestive phrasing" gag.
 
Crosspost from the Gundam channel:

IMPORTANT EMERGENCY ANNOUNCEMENT:

Banrise's Gundam.Info channel on youtube now has all of Turn-A Gundam up, available to watch for free, remastered in 1080p.


It's the secret best Gundam show ever made, so now's your chance at giving it a try if you haven't. I think it's just a good sci-fi show in general, so there's no real need watch any other Gundam media first. And if other Gundams haven't been your thing in the past, this show is very different from the rest of the franchise.
 

BEAT

LOUDSKULL
(DUDE/BRO)
I shotgunned SPY FAMILY on my phone over the course of a family trip and its a perfectly acceptable thing to shotgun while 90% unconscious.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
My top 10 anime for the year.

10. Frieren: Beyond Journey's End
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“Wow, dude, why is the best show of the year is so ridiculously low on your list?” Because I literally only watched two episodes. I loved the two episodes I watched. A lot. But I feel like I couldn’t rank it higher because of that. But those episodes did knock Yamada-Kin at Lv 999 and Oshi no Ko, two great shows off of my list. The most ridiculous part: didn’t watch Pluto yet. And I’m a Naoki Urasawa fan who has been dying for more adaptations of his series. And everyone says not only is Scott Pilgrim great, it’s a re-examination of a franchise that aged weird itself with the original cast. I promise I’ll get to them! It’s been a while fall season.

9. Bullbuster
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Bullbuster is a show that crept on me. Every seasons, there are a few shows that are not high end animation and competent but not mind blowing scripts that somehow worm their way into my hear. And that was Bullbuster this year, a show I had no expectations about. Blue collar mech animation is not a new genre (Patlabor was much that, too my memory) and this feels like a throw back to lo-fi mech storytelling but also is an interesting examination on a small company trying to survive in the world of capitalism but also be ethical. I feel like there are shows I found better in a lot of other ways and I could easily see others see this one as kind of forgettable but I really liked how the show shook out. It wasn’t the show I was most excited about, but it was one where I was surprised how invested I was in.

8. Skip and Loafer
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I like to think of myself as a viewer who tries not to align specifically with a favourite genre but I can’t deny, I can be a bit more forgiving of shounen series for being samey (especially action) and less forgiving with shoujo in that same regard. But I’m always really happy to see a really good shoujo that reminds me of what I love within the genre; characters we care about bouncing off each other, vibing not only romantically but as friends and support systems. 2023 had some good ones: My Love Story With Yamada-Kun at Lvl 999 made me afraid it was going to be a trite love story with pandering to gamers but somehow completely won me over. But Skip and Loafer… God, I love just spending time with these kids. The stakes are usually low but at the same time I am so happy with the victories they get and am completely into spending time with them. Please give this one another season!

(EDIT: I found out this series is a Seinen series! The hell?!)

7. Mashle: Magic and Muscles
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See what I mean? Skip and Loafer has few flaws. Mashle makes it a level higher and yet I put it a level higher? I’m so unfair and biased! But I have a reason. Yes, some of the leads are more annoying jerks but the real enjoyment hinges completely on the shoulders of the lead character; a guileless, stoic and maybe brainless muscleman who has a sweet heart, a sweet tooth and will not hesitate to punch the fuck out of assholes. See, yes, there are flaws but as good as Skip and Loafer is, there’s a pure hit of dopamine every time Mash Burnedead punches the shit out a smug magic fascist. I can’t wait for season two. Also, I’m given to understand there might be just two or three seasons, which makes me think it won’t wear out it’s welcome. Yay!

Oh, also, love the music. Some of these youtube videos suggest the instrumental versions. Never.

6. Dr. Stone
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In it’s first season, I felt a little guilty for not including Dr. Stone despite being so much fun. I guess I found that while I liked a lot of what it did, it lacked something emotionally (I learned my lesson, which is why Mashle is in my list). But even with those caveats, Dr. Stone’s New World arc is not only the most satisfying, the big fight is also the tensest. It reminded me of what I liked of the series writer’s previous manga Eyeshield 21, where working with the artist they managed to sell the sense of winning by the skin of your teeth for all factions. In this series, the stakes are far higher and every move the characters make when it finally happens hits me either in the feels or giving me goosebumps.


5. The Apothecary Diaries
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For whatever reason, I feel like I often either completely bounce off a lot of anime set in old timey China or am just a little checked out. This is not one of those series, the Apothecary Diaries is exactly my jam; mysteries solved with knowledge of drugs. It’s in many ways a good old-fashioned mystery series set in the imperial court. There are overarching plots and so far they are feeling very satisfying but even without them, I would get a lot of joy just hanging around with these characters and having them solving some smaller stakes mysteries. But the setting also sets up some bigger themes of characters being part of a system that hurts them and while I can’t imagine it’s going to end with out hero setting fire to imperialism or… even doing more than a mild admonishment, I do think it shows the fallout from the system. But mostly it’s about the cool mysteries.

4. Heavenly Delusion
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Heavenly Delusion or Tengoku Daimakyō is a series that was not easy to find at first but when it finally popped into Disney Plus, I was down for it early on. The series juggles it’s two timelines well, revealing a lot but also not actively pointing out “HEY, THIS THING THAT HAPPENED DIRECTLY CONNECTS TO THIS.” So it makes you feel smart for putting some of it’s puzzle pieces together. But beyond that, it’s also a really engaging and dark story. As I must, the penultimate episode is harrowing in a way I genuinely did not expect and without giving too much away from the twisty story, it really needs a content warning because I could see people finding it uniquely upsetting (and also greatly complicating trying to read into how the show is dealing with gender). Overall, the series is truly engaging and I have no idea where it will go from here but I really care about the two made leads from the post-apocalypse story and feel worried for the leads in the “this utopia is actually a dystopia” story.

3. Spy x Family
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On a much less conflicted note, it’s the feel-good action-spy sitcom. If you are looking to move the main plot along, you are shit out of luck. If you want more time with your favourite found family, then you get exactly what you want. Yes, there’s an epic four part cruise adventure but mostly it’s still all about laughs and character, getting a little more insight into the worlds of Loid, Yor, Anya and even that one bratty kid with the rich parents (who gets a surprisingly sweet little story). Frankly, there’s little I can say that I didn’t say when the show first premiered except there’s more of it and it’s still awesome.

2. Migi & Dali
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Going in, I learned some surprising things right before seeing the first episode. That it was by the creator of the delightful comedy series Haven’t You Heard, I’m Sakamoto, mostly. And that, tragically, the creator died a month before the series premiered. But what I wasn’t prepared for was a show that balances tones in a way I really haven’t seen before, mixing warped but very goofy humour with a gripping revenge plot. Seriously, the best way to describe it for me is Pinky and the Brain meets Parasite and yet that is so misleading. It’s just hard to compare. I guess, maybe it’s the non-super powered parts of Jojo when it is at it’s weirdest. But even goofier.



1. Vinland Saga
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Vinland Saga’s first season was a revelation, a series from the creator of Planetes that felt like it was for the Berserk crowd but less exploitation and more political maneuvering. The first season ends with a genuine game-changing shock and the mic drop; end of prologue. Season two, however, was something I wasn’t prepared for in the best way. Most series would have “haunted former killer is called back into action, despite wanting a life of piece”. That’s not what this is. It’s a series about violence and the choice to reject it, how hard that truly is and the kind of path that is. You’d think that wouldn’t be as engaging as life-or-death battles but it’s proven to be an extremely rewarding story and where season one had the lead as one of the least likeable characters in his own series, the second had him become someone I feel for, for him to find not only redemption but for him to achieve in his path. In this world, there is no one it is OK to kill. It’s easy to say but this is a series dedicated to showing pacifism as engaging as any fight.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
My takes on some of the new shows of the season so far...

Fluffy Paradise

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Premise

A 27-year-old office lady works herself to death because capitalism and is approached by God. God says he can’t change this fate because even the creator of everything can’t change a toxic work environment and instead offers her to help wipe out humans persecuting other animals in a fantasy world. To do this, she is permitted one super-power and she chooses “ANIMALS LOVE ME” because animals didn’t love her in life. She’s reborn and by age three has the power to make friends with even the most powerful and floofiest animals.

It Gud?

The number of isekai this season was shocking, in that it appeared in previews for series that didn’t seem to be inherently that. “Oh, a series were a salaryman buys a bird? That seems cute. Nope, he goes to another world and the bird talks or is a necromancer or something.” The genre isn’t inherently bad but often it invites a certain kind of laziness from storytelling and animation. It doesn’t need to. Some are really well-animated (though frustratingly, the story-telling or worldview is often off-putting to me). And some just have a charm that can get me through. I don’t think the vending machine one was particularly good but it did have the right sense of fun. And Campfire Cooking in Another World new that the food was the star and the characters were there to enjoy it. A show that’s a showcase for cute animals seems like it’s a similar success.

But sometimes these series get their foot in the door with something fun and drop it. I’ve been frustrated by Ascendence of a Bookworm focusing on magic and politics when I would rather see the business of propagating reading in a world largely illiterate. Saint’s Power Was Omnipotent was passable but I am in no way interested in the romance and dungeon crawling and am more into “she can make good potions, what can that lead to”. The Faraway Paladin (which never justifies or explains it’s isekai element) starts with a loveable undead family and though it ends OKish, it abandons them after a handful of episodes. Why does it think I don’t want barbarian skeleton dad?

Which brings me to Fluffy Paradise. I love the idea of saving a fantasy world through loving animals but weirdly so little of the show has animals. And the designs, by anime standards, aren’t that cute. Campfire Cooking drew the Hell out of the yummy food! It made my mouth water to look at. But it’s not getting the kind of visceral response I need looking at the animals here than, say, Too Cute Crisis from last year, a series with a similar cuteness focus. Keep in mind, I didn’t hate the show but I wanted more of what I was advertised and less a spunky three-year old running around bickering with the nobility. Frankly, I just thought it was a real snooze and most of the fun I had was making smart-alec comments at the screen.

Ishura

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The Premise

A sorceress in a city built on top of the slain Demon King’s fortress/maze is horrified the day when a giant golem emerges from the ground and murders pretty much everyone. Before she’s killed, she’s saved by a swordsman who takes the beast down with ease. The man is from another world, specifically Japan, Earth and is the last of the Yagyu clan. But he isn’t a hero. He seems more concerned with fun fighting, which makes the sorceress wonder if his appearance is responsible for the monster awakening and killing everyone she loves. Still, in the hopes he might die or she might gain greater insight into the tragedy, she follows him and tells him where to fine the world’s most dangerous fighters…

It Gud?

It… could be. I see something in this first episode that could break either way. It could be just a dumb action show with edgelord slant or it could be a series that questions the lone hero trope. My usual viewing partner said no largely because while it is certainly “trying”, he found the action kind of boring. I didn’t but I also didn’t get the level of hype the show was trying to get across with its huge scale. But mostly, his issue was the level of sadism in a scene where an innocent is dismembered. And I’ve seen much worse, in shows I like even, but it seemed to do a lot of building up just to be shocking and I don’t think it entirely earns it. I get what it is heading for; it’s not just one character’s town was destroyed, it suffered and she suffered. But I also feel like it is a show that might be trying to shock more than it is trying to get us in a genuine emotional sense of loss.

I think will give it a shot. I think it could move beyond it’s more base instincts and become a show where the super-powerful heroes pervading the land is actually kind of scary if they don’t give a shit about you. Or it could be generic action show with violence. I think it will be the latter, but I want to give a chance to the latter.

A Sign of Affection

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The Premise

A young deaf woman meets a guy on the train and is quickly smitten due to his thoughtfulness and handsomeness. She decides to pursue him and soon the two find mutual interest in each other.

It Gud?

I’ve only seen four new shows so far but I think it is easily my favourite so far. A Sign of Affection is effortless in telling a very simple and low-stakes romantic story and immediately getting us on board. The characters are quickly charming, the animation is pretty but not needlessly showy and the character designs are unique (lots of very full lips here). Like Skip and Loafer from last year, it’s a romance that looks not to be heavy on melodrama but on the smaller moments.

One thing I was worried about was that there’s some narration in it by the lead. I think that works well in comics but I kind of wish they did it as text for the series. This is a character who doesn’t speak after all and while she has a lot to say, I would almost prefer it to reflect that having a voice doesn’t need a literal voice. If the character did talk, I’d prefer a deaf voice actor but as she does not (at least, so far), I think I might prefer it being represented with text.

But this is a small complaint and in fact, the show does a lot with both sound and silence. There is narration but a lot of the scenes are actually very much in the moment allowing the silence to carry weight emotionally and create tone. So far, it’s a series that is all about chill vibes and love and I am digging it. Can’t wait to watch more of it.

Delicious in Dungeon

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The Premise

A party of adventurers in a dungeon are on a rescue mission to save a friend but with dwindling allies and resources, they need to save some money. To do this, they decide to use the monsters within the dungeon as a food source. This catches the attention of a foodie dwarf who knows all about cooking delicious monsters and who joins their party to give them a hand.

It Gud?

It’s no secret Delicious in Dungeon is one of the most anticipated adaptions of all time by one of the most beloved studios, Trigger, known for it’s unique visuals. It’s been hyped up a lot and I’ve been somewhat familiar. In the end my take is… it’s fine. I’m a person a little sick of “like D&D/RPG game but…” as a trope (it’s more that there’s SO many now) but my love of foodie anime is evergreen. This succeeds mostly on both fronts with some likeable characters, fun designs and great visuals.

So why did it work for me just a little less than others? It’s probably unfair but it came to my expectations being messed with. I expected low stakes hang out but then it ends with someone being eaten by a dragon. But then it turns out death is usually a small inconvenience if the body can be found. And then it does become a low stakes hang out show except it’s also a quest to make sure a friend can be rescued from death. So that mixed up my expectations. It’s really more on me than the show.

And in fact, I feel like if you like the manga, this is a fantastic adaptation of such. The show gives me what I want for food, mostly, with characters going into great detail on how to make the fictional food and also fun jokes about “um, should we eat things that eat people?” Mind, I like the show but after so much hype, it is just “like” one episode in. That said, I’m way open to having my mind changed.
 

Daikaiju

Rated Ages 6+
(He, Him)
“Oh, a series were a salaryman buys a bird? That seems cute. Nope, he goes to another world and the bird talks or is a necromancer or something.”
I think Sasaki and Peeps merits more of a look. I'm one episode (48 minutes, beefy!) in, and he's dealing with shenanigans on Earth and Peep's native world. I am enjoying it though.
 

JBear

Internet's foremost Bertolli cosplayer
(He/Him)
That's partly why we decided to give it a pass. 48 minutes is too long for a first episode! More shows have been doing this in recent seasons and it's not a trend that I care for. It turns shows that are just low-key bad into interminable death marches. If you expect me to spend an hour just to find out what your deal is, then you'd better be worth it, and so far I can't think of a single instance where I decided to stick with something with an extra-long premiere. I somehow doubt that an isekai would be the first to buck this trend.
 
AnimEigo is doing a kickstarter release for Macross II: Lovers Again on BD:


These peeps have a pretty good track record of following up on their kickstarters, and they probably won't print and sell more after the kickerstarter ends (In 5 days) so if this sounds like something you want to support/get your hands on -- now is your time.

I have rips of the JP BD release and they are utterly gorgeous. Maybe one of the best remasters/restorations I've ever seen in anime.
 
Triple posting because I don't care
The new Psycho-Pass movie, "Providence" got put on Crunchyroll a month or so ago. It's a movie detailing/bridging the events of the Sinners of the System movies, and Psycho-Pass 3. So you get to see exactly what Akane and Kougami were up to, and how they ended up in their respective positions in Season 3.

Wish I'd seen it sooner. It started kinda slow, but it turned out in the end to be pretty dang good. I just wish the first Psycho-Pass movie was this good, maybe more people would still be interested in the series.
 

Kirin

Summon for hire
(he/him)
Huh, I watched most of the series back in the day and I do vaguely remember some unexplained gaps in the narrative, but it’s been so long that I’ve long forgotten all the specifics.
 
Huh, I watched most of the series back in the day and I do vaguely remember some unexplained gaps in the narrative, but it’s been so long that I’ve long forgotten all the specifics.
There's a three year gap between the end of Sinners of the System, and Psycho-Pass 3 where Kougami comes back to Japan and Akane gets arrested and thrown in jail. Neither is ever discussed how that happens in Psycho-Pass 3, because PP3 has completely different POV characters who know almost nothing about what was going on in all of the previous PP stuff. You get hints of what might have happened, but it's never shown or discussed on screen.

"Providence" shows exactly what happened in between, and while you can guess the general outline of how things would go based on knowing what ultimately happens in PP3, it's still a pretty interesting journey to watch Akane have her idealism tested to its absolute limits. And the context in which she'd finally give up and commit a crime. An idea that almost sounds cringeworthy when written out like this in simplistic terms, but is handled very well in the film.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
Sengoku Youko

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Premise

An aspiring samurai with no connections ends up meeting a 9-tailed fox who likes humans and a humans who likes spirits (and doesn’t like humans). Seeing their power as they decide to fight monsters and defuse conflict between human and yokai, he decides to join them in the hopes of becoming stronger.

It Gud?

It is a terribly generic yokai shounen adventure series. Keep in mind, that doesn’t make it “bad”. But unfortunately, it does make it uninteresting. The script, animation and direction are competent and straight forward. Heck, it’s so efficient, it clearly started getting into the second story within the first episode. That does give it a bit of a weird structure but I guess I do appreciate it for not stretching things out unnecessarily.

The series is trying to have interesting characters; a misanthropic human who would rather defend yokai, a yokai who wants them to repent and bring out the rest of them and a powerful swordsman hampered by his own feet of clay. And yet, as the end of the day, I just have no interest in revisiting these characters or this world because it feels like if I wait a few months, I will be getting something like this again, hopefully better.

So, yeah, it’s not doing anything “wrong” but it fails to be unique. This series could have come out 20 or even 30 years ago with no changes. It’s weirdless timeless in its convention. I’m not even going to call it bland. The animation is a bit better than that. It has a flavour. This is more like getting a store-bought pizza; it will do in a pinch but a lot of these store-bought pizzas taste the same, regardless of branding. If someone decides to keep watch it, I get it; it seems like it isn’t a bad watch. I just… don’t feel like I need this one.

Cherry Magic

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The Premise

A 30-year-old office worker virgin who is awkward with women has a magic power: he can read minds by touching people. He soon accidentally uses his power on a co-worker and realizes despite his straight face, he is secretly SUPER THIRSTY for him. And it might be a reciprocated feeling but our lead might find this sexy older man a little intimidating…

It Gud?

Cherry Magic is a show that teeters on the edge of being… not good. I’m reminded of another BL rom-com from a few years ago that seemed promising and then ended with a wacky sexual assault. Frustratingly, a lot of BL series make a lot of questionable choices in terms of consent and power dynamics and Cherry Magic gets really close to hitting that area but manages to rein itself in before getting REALLY uncomfortable.

The main interesting thinks REALLY THIRSTY thoughts but he isn’t actually acting on anything in an inappropriate way… mostly. A lot of series would just have him making off-colour remarks (or even some inappropriate advances) but the show is a bit better at balancing its titillation and sweetness for that tension that people love in their rom-coms. It’s not without it’s flaws; yeah the boss doesn’t act on anything but apparently he bought some pajamas in the hopes that one day his co-worker would come over and wear it. Seems like a red flag.

Overall, I won’t be sticking with it but I keep thinking while clearly keeping inappropriate thoughts nearby (to the point where the main character admits to being afraid his senpai might be making a movie… and not like nervous, he seems a little afraid for himself), the show is mostly just kinda sweet. I don’t think the way it’s built that the lead will do anything bad but I am a bit bothered by the power dynamic or the way it is trying to excite the audience by bringing the possibility of something bad happening. Still, in the end, I’m leaving it not for that but more because… I don’t know if the show is going anywhere that interesting to me.

Hokkaido Gals are Super Adorable

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The Premise

Hokkaido Gals? They are super adorable.

It Gud?

Yeah, the preview was unfortunately male gazey but there are a few of those series that despite having issues in this regard have still been charming in other areas. Hokkaido makes gestures toward making the relationship between the leads charming but… it is clearly much more interesting in “boy, this chick is cute” and doubles down on that until she’s running around in the snow barely dressed. It’s pretty exhausting in this regard.

And it gets weird. OK, so the girl spills yogurt on her face and boobs and it looks like sperm? Yeah, that’s some basic stuff. But also making it really “erotic” when she blows her nose and it gets everywhere? That’s getting specific. And I don’t want to kink shame anyone who might enjoy that but it just shows that this show is just really thirsty before anything, doing the obvious thing of having stuff getting on the woman and then the guy staring and getting embarrassed about it.

Hokkaido Gals is not One Room, thank God, but I think it is trying to get a feel more akin to My Dress-Up Darling, a show I like but have issues with. But this show is almost exclusively those issues and I feel completely lacks what charm that show does have. It is only excited about the boobies and the fluids. Its only modes are “she’s cute” and ramping up to horny on main.

The Foolish Angel Dances with the Devil

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The Premise

A demon goes to school under cover as a human and falls for a human… who turns out to be an angel, who vows to make him her slave.

It Gud?

Man, if only this show was as funny as it thinks it is. Then we would have a funny show. As is, it is completely intolerable. For a show with such a high concept, it is willing to slow-play it and that’s the one choice I respect. The execution of that choice is intolerable. The characters are completely unlikable, for one but beyond that, it tries to get them to be wacky before what their whole deal is. One is supposed to be a big reveal but the other seems to just confuse the issue of what the main character is trying to accomplish.

Like, he comes in with a bald wig but I’m not sure what the point is. Is he supposed to be garnering sympathy? Was it a confusing practical joke because demons are capricious? It feels like a joke for the sake of a joke because the writer thought it would be funny. It’s not just unfunny, it is confusing, especially when trying to introduce characters. A skilled writer might be able to toy with this swerve rather than a conventional introduction (which is funny because “transfer student introduction is THE most standard character introduction in anime”) but this is not a skilled writer.

I think that’s the problem. Humour is treated as purely affectation. They are trying to create charm in the show through quirkiness but quirkiness unmoored from anything. There are series where I come in not understanding where it is coming from but I can feel like there’s a method behind the madness, sometimes bringing me in despite the weirdness. Conversely, this show seems completely desperate to make me think it is funny but it’s just covering me in flop sweat as it dances around and it makes me feel sad for it as it also makes me feel mad at it for aggressively doing this. It’s just a very unfunny show.



Mr. Villain’s Day Off

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The Premise

A villain of tokusatsu heroes has vowed to end humanity. But today is his day off. He just needs some down time.

It Gud?

Of the five shows presented here, I think this one is my favourite. And despite this, I won’t continue. Before I explain why, let me explain the good points. 1) it’s a really chill show. If you want a wacky premise but a chill vibes show, this is it. It’s a fun little series about a villain enjoying the beauty of a day without work, completely cutting loose from work life to just enough life. 2) the main character is enjoyable. He’s a villain who wants to destroy humanity (except the pandas) but whenever encountering humans, he can’t help but being kind to them (begrudgingly) and helping people out (most of whom are his Super Sentai-esque enemies, who are also quick to recognize he’s a nice guy). And 3) sometimes, it’s… not laugh out loud funny but a sensible chuckle.

So what are my issues? It’s almost too chill at times. Like, I don’t often complain about that; some shows try to be and are more boring and lack the vibes. This has those ASMR vibes. But sometimes it just doesn’t sustain my interest. The first episode improves as it gets going and fills out the cast but sometimes I’m just zoning out. But I think that’s partially because of problem 2; this is one of those shows I’d enjoy a lot more if it was shorter. It already is a series of short sketches between 3-5 minutes long but there are certain series that when expanded to full episode length, I kind of get exhausted by. Usually I’d say that about a more frantic show but I just feel like this show would be better served being a 5-12 minute short.

Overall it is a good enough show but the length is the tipping point for me. I do like a good short show and I feel like a lot of four komas or series where the original manga chapters were about 8 pages (or were longer perhaps and just translated to short amounts of time due to pacing) are best represented in a shorter format. It is a pleasant show so I will say if you find the premise inviting do give it a try; you might not have the same bugbear as I. But for me, I would be more willing to watch it if I stopped midway through an episode and gave it a week.
 

Baudshaw

Unfortunate doesn't begin to describe...
(he/him)
Sasaki and Miyano

After watching Demon Slayer years ago, I thought I would get back into anime- and this was a good start. It's only 12 episodes long (plus an epilogue movie), and it's a nice, wholesome romance. I give it an 8/10. Keep in mind I watched the dubbed version.

Sasaki
The best part of the show. The voice actor does a great job acting mischievous and playful, while still being serious at times. I was surprised at how much focus he got, and I liked his arc of hiding his love for Miyano at first. The extreme height difference between him and Miyano is a bit jarring, though.

Miyano

Unfortunately, I do not have the same enjoyment for Miyano. His romance for Sasaki mostly boils down to 'am I really gay', and it the show's constant obsession with BL gets on my nerves. It feels like it's screaming to you "ISN'T BL GREAT?? OMG THIS BOY LIKES BL ISN'T THAT SO FUNNY". His voice actor is at least... tolerable, and the two kind of work as a pairing.

Supporting Cast

They barely exist, which I think is a good thing. They shouldn't detract from the romance, after all. But one guy seems to have more spotlight than all the others, and that's Hanzawa. This eccentric and posh guy who never opens his eyes has an extremely weird amount of focus spent on him, with not much influence in the actual plot.

Presentation and Pacing

The music is surprisingly excellent, but the visual style and animation are just okay. My biggest problem, however, is the pacing. This show takes its time with everything; it feels far, far longer than 12 episodes at times. It makes the show feel drawn-out, and it feels like everything is progressing as slow as possible. Finally, the dialogue is extremely unique- it feels thoroughly modern, as if it took place in the 2020s. I'm not sure the older demographic here would like that, but I enjoyed it.
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
I’m really hoping Metallic Rouge is the kind of show where the pilot is the outlier and episode 2 is a better representation of the series because I liked episode 1, but the second one brings the content an Octo Craves from anime
 
I’m really hoping Metallic Rouge is the kind of show where the pilot is the outlier and episode 2 is a better representation of the series because I liked episode 1, but the second one brings the content an Octo Craves from anime
I'm curious about that show. It's done by one of my favorite studios: Bones. And it's an anime-original show. Which, being Bones, can be hit or miss. But such things are so rare in the anime-space that it's always just inherently interesting to see a show even attempt an original idea
 

Baudshaw

Unfortunate doesn't begin to describe...
(he/him)
Pokemon Concierge might be the best Pokemon-related show ever. It's short, but oh god does it use its time well. 10/10
 
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