I have three announcements to make this weekend! If you’ve been following the blog, you know that I review anime on a weekday basis around here; Eyeshield 21 still holds down the Monday slot, Fate/stay night has taken over Tuesdays, and Azumanga Daioh is on “Funny Fridays.” But two series I had been watching both have come to a conclusion, so I am replacing them.
On Wednesdays, I will review a baseball anime named Princess Nine. On Thursdays, I will go back in time and watch Suzuka, a series I got halfway through before stopping. In addition, on weekends (most likely Saturdays, though the posts may come on Sundays), I am starting a new feature called “Movie Weekends.” It’s pretty simple, actually; I take a movie and watch it and then review it. These include features such as Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke, but also some more silly stuff like the 4 Bleach movies and the 4 InuYasha movies. The Fullmetal Alchemist movie(s) are also a possibility, as are the Evangelion Rebuild movies.
So lots of stuff coming up on the blog, and of course I will continue to review Hunter x Hunter and Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure here as they air on Toonami. As Konata Izumi would say, look forward to it!
Azumanga Daioh episodes 8-9 review
Why in the heck do I like Azumanga Daioh so much? One word: Tomo. That girl is amazing. She’s like Konata Izumi on steroids. You can say all you want about Osaka or maybe Kaorin, but Tomo’s the catalyst for this series. She brings the humor to every scene. Poor Chiyo-chan takes a lot of abuse in these episodes, but that’s what she’s there for, right? Oh, and Sakaki continues to be the person the plotlines all revolve around. Even though she talks maybe twice an episode.
If all that sounds discombobulated, that’s because it’s supposed to. Azumanga Daioh isn’t supposed to make sense, it’s just supposed to make you laugh. And it does. Even me, the stoic one. I’m the Sakaki of real life, yet this show turns me into a Tomo. If you liked Lucky Star, this one isn’t really anything like it; instead, it’s on the bizarre side. But it’s funny. And for that, I give it kudos.
Episode 8 rating (out of four stars): ***1/2
Episode 9 rating: ***
Black Butler II OVAs 1-6 review
The OVAs of Black Butler II are absolutely bizarre… but in a good way. The first and the fourth are a two-part take on Alice in Wonderland with Ciel as the titular character. This includes a scene with Ran-Mao as a naked mushroom that you will never, ever forget. (Seriously, her breasts are bigger than watermelons. And there’s no escaping from the fanservice.) These ones were pretty funny, even though they made little sense.
Episode two was a first-person episode where you viewed the episode through the eyes of a character who was plotting to kill Ciel Phantomhive. It’s an interesting take, but ultimately not all that great. Episode three was by far the funniest, a breaking-of-the-fourth-wall where all the characters act as if they are actors playing the parts of their characters. This included a bad-attitude Hannah and some great scenes out of Sebastian and Grell, not to mention more fanservice from Ran-Mao and Mey-Rin.
Episode five is the worst of the bunch, an episode about Alois Trancy, who I gave up on caring about a long time ago. But episode six is a great one: it’s a story of a grim reaper named Will who teams up with Grell and who has the job of ending one person’s life. The nonchalant way they go about ending the poor chap’s life makes for some great humor, if gallows humor.
Overall, episode three was the best of the bunch, followed by number six and the fanservicey episode four.
Episode 1 rating (out of four stars): **1/2
Episode 2 rating: **
Episode 3 rating: ***1/2
Episode 4 rating: ***
Episode 5 rating: *
Episode 6 rating: ***
Adolescence of Utena review
This is it for Utena. I watched the movie, I’ve completed the series. Utena is in the front-running beside Attack on Titan and Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood for the most overrated anime of all time. Seriously. I never found anything I liked about it besides the occasional Nanami humor episode. This movie had nothing entertaining except for the Nanami cow jokes about halfway through.
To say I hated Utena is not completely fair, but what’s more accurate is that I never understood it. Even this movie had no coherent plot. It all seemed like a 2-hour buildup to the inevitable yuri kiss. The kiss was so obvious, yet so stupid too because it wasn’t like Utena and Anthy actually fell in love throughout the movie. No, instead, bizarre thing after bizarre thing occurred, and then eventually Utena and Anthy just get naked and kiss. It’s all fanservice!
This movie was the perfect encapsulation of the Utena series. It was nonsensical, it was bizarre, it was bordering on the line of insanity. There was nothing about it that made any coherent sense. I’m still trying to figure out what the actual plot was. If such a series was made today, it would never have made it under the strict scrutiny of today’s anime fans. It survived because it had little competition at the time. Utena isn’t good, I’m sorry to tell you. Don’t waste your money on the Super Special Edition Totally Amazing that seems to be coming out.
Movie rating: *1/2
Overall series rating: **