Thursday, October 20, 2011

Fall Anime 2011 Reviews: Part two!

For those who missed it, I did update the first post with my thoughts on Last Exile: Fam (what I'm most disappointed about with it is just how much the fandom for it is complaining, about having a predominately female cast, possibly a yuri hint or two, a bit of fanservice and it's not like the original show didn't have most of that as well) this post should cover everything else I've tried so far this season. Looks like I'll be watching more shows than I planned on which makes me pretty glad that I'm not watching much non-anime stuff right now (Doctor Who is done, Project Runway is almost done, My Little Pony is starting up again but that's not a bit thing, might finish up Legend of the Seeker on Netflix soon), although I do have some older anime titles I'm trying to finish up now as well, balancing all of this and school work could get tricky soon....

Persona 4
In case anyone is worried that I suddenly forgot how the alphabet goes yes I know this should have gone before Phi Brain but I only tried out this show a couple of days ago and didn't want to mess with my previous post any more than I had. In any case, I've never played any of the Persona games so I went in with only a basic knowledge of the plot and managed to keep up and understand everything pretty well. Yu Narukami is sent to live with his uncle and cousin in a small town as his parents work overseas (weird, I thought it was standard for anime characters to live at home by themselves), awkwardly meets some people, accidentally discovers his can now phase through tvs and ends up fighting some monsters with his new friends. The pacing bothered me more than anything else, it felt really choppy in the first episode (as if they were just showing the cut scenes from the game and cutting out the game play parts, I had a similar problem with Toganu no Chi last year) but the pace in the second episode seemed much smoother and felt like a better speed. I've seen some people worried about how the studio is going to compress a 80+ hour game into a bit under 11 hours but I'm going to remain optimistic for the moment. In the US this is being simulcast by Sentai/Section 23 through their site, The Anime Network but it looks like they're using the hulu player so you can also watch it that way. 

Sekaiichi Hatsukoi 2
Starting pretty soon after the first season left off, Ritsu is still working for the manga publishing magazine Emerald and he's now in a supervisor position so there's even more work for him now. More importantly, it seems that in two episodes Ritsu and Takano have made at least as much (if not more) progress than they did in the entire first season, I was rather impressed since I was expecting the story to continue the "will-they-or-won't-they?" story to the very end. Also happy to see they're still censoring out the sex scenes (which is just because I don't like porn of any kind that much*) although I'm sure the hardcore fujoshi fans aren't so happy. The visuals are still below average, this is a Studio Deen work so that shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone and I haven't really noticed the music that much. Next week the story is switching to one of the side couples so fingers crossed that it continues to improve on the first season.
The second season of Sekaiichi is streaming on crunchyroll and you can watch the first season there as well. 

Squid Girl 2 (Shinryaku Ika Musume!?)
Squid Girl also continues more or less where the first season left off but after four episodes I'm just not loving it as much as I liked the first season. I remember that I marathoned a good chunk of the series the first time and maybe that's what I need to do now to get back into the show. It has the same set-up as before, three sketches in each episode, but only one or two of them have felt really funny to me, some were a bit amusing and others just fell flat, the humor just doesn't feel as creative anymore. The show is taking a break in the upcoming weeks (to give the stations that started late a chance to catch up) so maybe a little break is what I need. 
Like it's predecessor, Squid Girl is streaming on crunchyroll.

Tamayura~Hitotose~
I didn't watch the original Tamayura OVAs when they came out since I saw mixed reviews about them but decided to try out the tv series for a few reasons. While I normally have no interest in the cute girls/boys doing cute things kind of plot this was a story about cute girls doing photography, my thing, which was interesting and the show is being directed by Junichi Sato who did the series composition for Croisée in a Foreign Labyrinth this past summer and I really enjoyed that show so I thought I would give it a try. Tamayura just didn't work for me however, while Croisée managed to have a "healing" feeling by being a very low-key, character growth oriented show it felt like Tamayura was trying too hard to capture that same feeling and came off feeling forced to me. Maybe if this series got licensed I would give it another chance but for the moment I'm not going to follow fansubs for any series I don't completely adore.

UN-GO
The other noitaminA show this fall (funny enough, the same two studios, Production IG and Bones did both the shows for the summer block and the fall block, this is Bones' show) and it's adapted from Ango Sakaguchi's post WWII mystery stories, this time set in the near future after a war. Shinjurou Yuuki is "the defeated detective" since it always seems like he makes incorrect deductions and he's accompanied by his assistant, and by far the strangest element in this show, Inga. While the mystery was nothing special (I honestly think it's harder to do a mystery in a visual medium and in serial mediums, keep meaning to write a blog entry on that) I did like how the surrogate audience character was NOT the detective's assistant for once and that she could be an interesting character later on. I didn't really like how Gosick turned out but I've never been able to find out how much of the ending was Bones and how much of the ending was the original work so I'm hoping I'll like a story that's almost all Bones a bit more.
UN-GO is streaming for multiple countries on crunchyroll.

So there you have it, 10 shows, 2 I'm dropping, 8 I hope to follow and who knows, I might even try out Fate/Zero later on when I have the time. Not now though, apologies that this entry is up so late but this week has been crazy for me and tomorrow's entry might be up really late (like, a whole day late) as well. Fingers crossed that everything will go smoothly tomorrow but I'm not counting on it.

*believe me, I've seen hardcore yaoi before, although there's a bit of a story behind that one.

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