Posted in Anime, Anime Review, 2017

Noragami (2014) anime review

77809Yato is a stray deity who calls himself a ‘delivery god’ and who has recently found himself without a regalia, the weapons of the gods. Hiyori Iki is a normal highschool girl who is a big fan of martial arts and who finds herself slipping out of her body randomly after she gets hit by a bus when ‘saving’ Yato. Yukine is a stray spirit who becomes Yato’s regalia and who is finding it difficult to adjust to his new life as the servant of a homeless god. The entire first season is about the relationships between these three character and how they change over time.

Screenshot (104)At first glance this anime looks like your typical shounen anime with quirky characters and battle scenes. The characters look flat and a lot of the drama appears to be stupid. However the thing that makes this anime so great is not the drama, the characters, or the humour but rather the relationships between the characters. In fact one of the biggest themes of the series is related to friendly relationships. These relationships change a lot throughout the course of the first season and are the cause of many of the major plot points and twists. There is a second season in Noragami Aragoto where the relationships between side characters and between them and the main three characters are explored.

Screenshot (106).pngThat being said. The humour in this series is actually funny mainly because no one but Hiyori can see Yato. He is able to get away with a lot of things that no one else can get away with and he is often seen in strange places. The humour makes the emotional scenes that much better because the series can go from hilarious to sad within a matter of seconds.

Screenshot (113).pngI recommend that you watch this series if you enjoy shounen anime. It is a good series that is not haunted by a need to create filler arcs to have a year round release schedule. There are currently two seasons. Only the first one is on CrunchyRoll so if you want to watch it watch it there.

Final Rating – 45/50

Posted in 2017, Anime, Anime Review

Gabriel DropOut (2017) anime review

82590.jpgGabriel White Tenma goes down to Earth from Heaven to study among humans in order to complete her training and become a full fledged angel. In Heaven she was always the top of her class and she believes it is her mission to be a great angel and bring happiness to mankind. However after her first day of being on Earth she discovers online gaming and becomes a fallen, or as she puts it ‘faillen angel’. Along with Raphiel Ainsworth Shiraha, fellow angel and her former classmate; and the two demons Vignette April Tsukinose and Satanichia McDowell Kurumizawa, she attends human high school where neither the angels nor the demons act as they should.

Screenshot (93).pngIt is never explained how Gabriel gets introduced to video games. She hears a voice coming from her laptop and sees that it is someone crying out for help in the game but in order for that to be possible she would need to have the game open, and the game would need to support text-to-speech. Neither of the demons left it there because they are both incompetent at being demons, and no one else would have even known her identity except for her fellow angels. This is something I hope will be explained in a future season if this series ever gets one of those.

Screenshot (102).pngEach of the characters is based on an anime cliche. Gabriel is an otaku, Satanichia is an individual with eighth-grade syndrome, and so on.  Not only this but many of the events of this series are also based around cliches. There is little to no plot other than Gabriel discovering video games and falling, as well as a few other things. Most of the episodes are made up of the characters doing cute things or setting each other up for jokes which are often repeated. The thing is this is a comedy anime. There doesn’t need to be a whole lot of plot, and if the jokes are funny I’m okay if they’re repeated as long as they are not overdone.

As a comedy anime this series is well done. Rarely does it become unbelievable and the way each of the four main characters has a quirk which plays off the quirks of other characters. I did laugh at a few of the jokes. However some jokes took a little to much time/dialogue in the set up for some of the jokes which made me bored until the actual joke came.

Screenshot (100).pngThis is an interesting series with a lot of flaws. I would recommend this to anyone who likes a decent comedy series, but not to anyone who absolutely hates anything having to do with cliches. This is the type of series you watch to entertain yourself when you’re bored, but you don’t expect to actually get much out of watching it.

Final Rating – 43/50

Posted in 2017, Anime, Anime Review

Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid (2017) anime review

85434One night, after getting very drunk Kobayashi finds a dragon with a sword sticking out of its side. She removes the sword and in return, after turning into a human form the dragon offers to do anything for Kobayashi. Kobayashi drunkenly requests that the become her maid. The next morning as she sets out to work she opens the door and sees the dragon. The dragon turns into her human form and is wearing a maid outfit. She introduces herself as Tohru and after convincing Kobayashi to let her stay she becomes a maid. Thus begins the odd relationship between Kobayashi, Tohru, and several other dragons.

Screenshot (67)The designs of the characters, especially the dragons is great. A lot of thought went into the dragon designs because each one is based off of a different myth found in different parts of the world. The best part of these designs is the stark contrast between the mundane programmer Kobayashi and the fantastical dragon Tohru. Kobayashi keeps the series grounded in realism while Tohru allows for a lot of crazy things to happen which adds the majority of the humour to the series along with Kobayashi’s reactions to these crazy things.

Screenshot (68)There many different dragons in this series, each one with a tragic backstory related to family and the way society treats them. These backstories also help connect these characters to their real life mythical inspirations. This aids the development of the main themes related to both family and society which will be explored throughout each episode until the very end. These themes create a few scenes that caused me to cry a little so be ready for them if you ever watch this series.

Screenshot (63)This is a fantastic series despite a few strange moments involving young characters and a couple minor hiccups in the animation. I recommend you watch Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid if you enjoy watching any fantasy, slice of life, or comedy anime, as well as if you just so happen to love dragons like me. A season two may be coming in the future, so we’ll just have to wait and see.

Final Rating – 48/50

Posted in 2017, Anime, Anime Review

Masamune-kun’s Revenge (2017) anime review

83709When Masamune Makabe was a child he was bullied by a wealthy and beautiful girl and given the name Pig’s Foot because of his chubby appearance. Years later, after working hard to improve himself he encounters that same girl, Aki Adagaki. He has come up with the perfect plan to get revenge on Aki and this involves making her fall in love with him before he dumps her in a spectacular fashion. He is helped by Aki’s maid, Yoshino Koiwai who claims that she wants to teach her boss a lesson but gives no specifics as to what that lesson is. This anime is a romantic comedy involving two equally vain and damaged individuals.

Screenshot (58)At first I hated all the characters. Masamune was impossible to like because the first time you see him in the anime he is posing in front of the mirror without a shirt on after a shower in his room. He refuses to eat the food his mother made him for breakfast because it contains too many calories. Aki is no different because she is standing on the school roof revealing all the embarrassing secrets of a boy who asked her out for the entire school to hear. After I finished watching this series I only slightly disliked these two characters. There are also some characters who fit into anime archetypal characters which I find slightly annoying.

Screenshot (59)There are a couple interesting plot points which was the only reasons why I continued watching this series other than the fact that I hoped both Masamune and Aki would change after they discovered the truth about each other. Of course the final major plot point is resolved by the end of the second to last episode. I don’t like how the last episode seems so much like filler or how nothing is different between the beginning and ending of the series in terms of Masamune’s and Aki’s relationship. Both this and the unlikable characters are major flaws in Masamune-kun’s Revenge.

Screenshot (61)But even so, I enjoyed watching this series. It is an interesting romantic comedy and I’ll be sure to watch season two if it ever comes out. I recommend this series to anyone who enjoys romantic comedy. I do not however recommend this series to anyone who is looking for actual likable characters because you will not find them in this series, at least not in the main cast.

Final Rating – 42/50

Posted in 2017, Anime, Anime Review

The Future Diary (2011-2012) anime review

Mirai Nikki posterYukiteru Amano is a lonely high school student who thinks of himself as an observer. He writes down everything he observes around him in the diary on his phone. He has two “imaginary” friends, Deus Ex Machina the god of space and time, and his servant Murmur. One day he learns that his friends are not imaginary but rather the real deal and Deus gives Yukiteru the Indiscriminate Diary which tells him everything he’s going to observe in the future. He is then forced to participate in a death game with 11 other people with their own future diaries. Whoever wins gets to be the new god of time and space. Yukiteru is aided by his obsessive stalker Yuno Gasai who also has a diary as he tries to survive.

Screenshot (53)The Future Diary (also known as Mirai Nikki) is a very dark show filled with many eccentric characters with tragic backstories. While some of the characters are very annoying and bizarre, all the characters add something to the series. The main two character’s, Yukiteru and Yuno especially go through serious things throughout the course of the plot and even before the beginning. These characters are definitely not likable characters, but what they are is interesting.

Screenshot (52)The psychological thriller part of The Future Diary for at least part of the series. There were times when I felt I needed to watch the next episode as soon as possible because I wanted to know if a character was alright. Looking back that may have been because of the presence of cliffhangers. Of course there were other times where I got bored and I left the series for a little bit to watch something else. This is expected in a survival game type story with multiple threats that come after the main characters one after another rather than all at once. I feel more could have been done to keep viewers interesting, though of course no anime series is made for binge watching.

Screenshot (56)I enjoyed watching this series. I recommend that you watch The Future Diary, however keep in mind that the version on Crunchyroll is not censored meaning that all the scenes containing nudity and extreme violence have been unaltered. There are a lot of these scenes as to be expected. However there is one episode not on Crunchyroll which gives a lot of insight into the confusing ending. I recommend that you try to find a way to watch that episode on another site.

Final Rating – 43/50

Posted in 2017, Anime, Anime Review

No. 6 (2011) anime review

53953After the end of a long bloody war many years before, humans took shelter in six city-states each with the most creative name ever. These city-states were supposed to be perfect places where everyone can be happy and get along and have fun, but as is the case with most utopian societies in fiction that is not the case. Shion, a resident of the city-state No. 6 gains a new perspective and is forced to go down a different path than he had planned when he meets Nezumi (Rat). Nezumi is a fugitive and Shion helps him out. A few years later when the two boys meet again Nezumi is the one helping Shion out after an incident where he doubts No. 6 and a giant wasp comes out of his friends neck.

Screenshot (30)No. 6 is a weird series. Nezumi has an army of robotic rats because of course the guy named Rat needs to have some connection to rats other than his name. Shion is unchanging except for when his physical appearance changes which is not a spoiler because its on all the posters. He is flat except for the fact that he has an eccentric personality. He is also very smart which ends up doing nothing for him. In fact most of the characters are pretty flat representing different ideals and perspectives rather than being well-developed.

Screenshot (32)While I did enjoy watching No. 6 due to some interesting worldbuilding, decent animation, and a couple interesting scenes involving the two main characters, afterwards I got nothing out of it but an overwhelming feeling of disappointment. This could have been an amazing series but it wasn’t. I recommend this to anyone who has a few hours to waste, however I do not recommend it to anyone who has Melissophobia because of how many scenes there are involving giant wasps.

Final rating – 31/50

Posted in 2017, Anime, Anime Review

Ano Natsu de Matteru anime review

59405Kaito Kirishima is testing out his camera on a bridge when he sees a blue light streak across the night sky. After an explosion which blew him off the bridge he looses consciousness only to wake up in his bed at home with a faint memory of a hand catching him. Kaito and his friends decide to make a movie during the summer and after noticing Kaito’s interest in his upperclassmen Ichika Takatsuki his friend Tetsurou Ishigaki invites her to join them. Only Ichika is an alien who has crash landed on Earth and is trying to avoid being detected by the men in black. During this summer Kaito, Ichika, and their friends find that this has become one of the most exciting and entertaining summers of their lives. The time they spend together is meaningful as they must confront the true feelings they have for one another.

Screenshot (50)This anime is in a slice of life anime which later becomes a full blown romance. It also has elements of science fiction in it which it never fully explains. What is most important in Ano Natsu de Matteru are the characters and the ways they interact with each other. There is a love triangle but the way the writers wrote it makes it interesting because there are multiple love triangles interlocking with different characters. There is a hint of mystery as well which you may or may not overlook on your first viewing.

The humour of this anime is like what you would see in any other decent slice of life series. It uses many common tropes, but this does not make it a bad anime. There are many touching moments where characters confess their feelings to one another, explain some of their motivations, and do other things. One of the first moments like this is at the very beginning where Kaito explains his reasons for capturing the world with his camera.

Screenshot (42)I recommend that you watch this anime if you enjoy romance and slice of life anime. If you want to watch it it’s available for streaming on Crunchyroll. While Ano Natsu de Matteru isn’t my favourite anime ever, I enjoyed it quite a bit.

Final Rating – 41/50