What I'm Watching

Talk about a specific anime series or genre that you enjoy.

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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby bakamatt » Tue Jul 25, 2017 8:45 am

My GATE spiffy box thingie arrived yesterday, on schedule.

No buyer's remorse. Blu-Rei and DVD versions, some pretty postcard-sized pictures, a silly flag thing that might look okay in a poster frame. A kind of nifty replica of Rory's halberd that, alas, won't work as a letter opener but should find a place in my decor. A nice patch that I'll probably put on my backpack next to my NERV patch.

And the book, which was what was going to be the make-or-break, is a make. It's a handsome thing, about the size of a paperback but a nice sturdy hardback. The first half is an episode guide, with a couple of liner notes per episode. The second half is the cast guide - quite comprehensive - and lots more liner note-y bits. So if I had to say, would I pay the difference between the box and the vanilla release to get the patch and the book? Yeah, I think so.

Just in skimming it I found some interesting bits. Like, a lot of the vehicles and other equipment the JSDF sends into the Special Region is obsolete or, at least, not current. This was done, not out of concern that the natives would reverse engineer it, but because they feared a hasty retreat might oblige them to abandon it and they didn't want to lose the expensive stuff. I.e., even with something as potentially earth-shaking as the Gate, the bureaucracy still pinched pennies.

I also found out something I'd been wondering about, the ranks of everyone in Itami's squad. My waifu Kuribayashi is a "1st Sergeant", which I might guess, since they also have "Sergeants", is the equivalent to our Staff Sergeant, but she doesn't seem to have that kind of responsibility, so I assume their ranks work differently than ours. It may be one of those "honorary rank" things, if the members of a reconnaissance square aren't in the regular chain of command.
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby bakamatt » Tue Nov 07, 2017 7:20 am

I've kind of gotten into Recommendation of the Wonderful Virtual Life, a.k.a. Netojuu no Susume, a.k.a. Recovery of an MMO Junkie. It's not your typical cast (somewhat older); nor, mercifully, is it another "trapped in an MMO" story. More like "trapped in the real world". For a while the dynamic was players realizing they knew each other in real life; just now it's become
Spoiler: show
players getting which real world person is who confused.


I could live without the "coincidences like that don't happen" lampshading, and I don't know that things aren't going too turn to soap opera-y for me, but five episodes in I'm still kind of beguiled. We'll see.
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby bakamatt » Fri Nov 17, 2017 9:27 am

Still liking Netojuu no Susume quite a bit. Morimori-chan's new look is way cuter.

And it looks like next episode we may finally find out something about the chick with blue hair in the opening credits. I still have only vague guesses who or what she is. It occurred to me, that's a gimmick that Western shows don't exploit: showing a character in the credits that isn't going to show up in the program any time soon, to say nothing of giving only hints about who or what she is.
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby ZeroRyoko1974 » Sun Nov 26, 2017 10:11 am

Latest episode had a major cliffhanger. Can't wait for the next episode.
Spoiler: show
Yuta confessed to Moriko that he is Lilly. Also, they used to be friends in a previous MMO they played. The blue haired girl in the op, is a character she makes in the new game based on the character she played in the earlier game (the blue haired girl in the tree with the hat)
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby bakamatt » Sun Nov 26, 2017 2:19 pm

ZeroRyoko1974 wrote:Latest episode had a major cliffhanger. Can't wait for the next episode.
Spoiler: show
Yuta confessed to Moriko that he is Lilly. Also, they used to be friends in a previous MMO they played. The blue haired girl in the op, is a character she makes in the new game based on the character she played in the earlier game (the blue haired girl in the tree with the hat)


Yeah. I can't say I was impressed with who the blue-haired girl is; I was envisioning something much more interesting. The explanation for the two angels sitting in the tree is somewhat more interesting. And I am still liking the show.
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby Tsunami3k » Fri Dec 01, 2017 11:02 am

Oh wow, you don't see much stuff like that make it over here. Hopefully it'll do well and give other neglected lore-building material a shot at domestication.
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby bakamatt » Sat Dec 02, 2017 6:21 am

I think episode nine of Recovery of an MMO Junkie was the funniest anime episode I've watched this year. (Though I do surely hate that title.) I laughed out loud at least five times.

On the surface it was just yet another "can't spit it out" episode. But Morioka and Sakurai are so cute and shy and inept, and the physical humor works too.
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby ZeroRyoko1974 » Sat Dec 02, 2017 10:36 pm

Her mind=blown moments were great
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby bakamatt » Fri Dec 15, 2017 6:40 am

A propos of nothing in particular, but I'd forgotten how funny Full Metal Panic: Fumoffu episode nine is. I saw it on a list of "best beach/pool/onsen" episodes.
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby ZeroRyoko1974 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 8:24 am

That whole season is one of the funniest things ever. The rest of FMP is kind of meh to me, but I loved Fumoffu
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby bakamatt » Tue Dec 26, 2017 3:02 pm

We've completed the Slayers re-watch that we started over the Thanksgiving holiday. All the TV episodes, a.k.a. Slayers, Slayers Next, Slayers Try, and Slayers Revolution and Evolution-R. (The last two were released as "season 4" and "season 5", but I see no reason not to think of them as one unit, "season 4/5".)

I have no profound revelations to offer, nor any defense for why it's still a favorite. (Except, perhaps, that it was the first thing I watched when I got seriously into anime c. 1998 or '99.) The cast is ever-entertaining, largely due to the voice actors - that Lina Inverse and Rei Ayanami have the same seiyuu will never cease to astonish me.

One nice thing is that I was pleased to observe that season 4/5 is rather better than I remembered. As an early example of cel-style CG, it still looks awful. The characters appear to be made out of plastic, the designs have been simplified, and sometimes they simply don't look like themselves. But that must have colored my memory of the writing, which wasn't bad. New character Pokota is much less irritating than I remembered, Xeloss gets a lot of good bits (if I'd ever complied a list of favorite characters, he'd be in it), and the call-backs to earlier seasons are frequent. Lots of characters from earlier seasons show up, either in person or in flashbacks. Even when it doesn't really make a lot of sense for them to do so. Or, as in the case of the opening credit for Evolution-R, they don't really have any reason to do so. (And when I say "earlier", I mean earlier. At least, if the character Nama is who you're supposed to suspect she actually is.)

I suspect if you carefully scrutinized everyone's motives and actions, it wouldn't hold up. But, God knows, you don't watch Slayers because you're a continuity wonk.

By way of rating the seasons, I think my order is two, one, four/five, three. The writing on three is still a mess; even the writer Kanzaka-san himself has admitted he doesn't like it.
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby bakamatt » Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:08 pm

Okay, gonna go a little nuts here:

What I said about Xeloss from Slayers being on my “favorite characters” list, if I had one, got me thinking about it. So here it is.

There isn’t that much they have in common, though there’s some dominant features: the “one sane man” (surrounded by idiots or crazies) motif is a favorite of mine; there are a couple of waifu on here (though that should be a separate list); and characters with “character”. Most of them are at least somewhat multi-dimensional, and most evolve through their appearances. But what it comes down to is these are the characters of whom it may be said I’m always glad to see them on the screen.

I’m not going to chop this up with spoiler tags: it would become unreadable. So be warned by the obvious franchise labels if you’re concerned with minor spoilers.

Not in any particular order. Posted one character at a time.

Xeloss the Mysterious Priest (Slayers): how can you not love a characters whose first appearance is his introducing himself as “the Mysterious Priest”? You know from the start that he’s not normal; he throws around way too much power so, like Gourry, you shouldn’t be surprised to find out he’s from the “Monster” race. He doesn’t gel until you know that; it explains why he’s “Mysterious”, i.e, you never know his true goal until he gets it. But since every other Monster we encounter in the franchise is a one-dimensional evil jerk, Xeloss’ big hook is that he’s willing to take so much abuse from Lina. Even when she genuinely thwarts him (which isn’t that often – he generally succeeds in getting her to do what he wants) he still obviously likes and respects her and enjoys her company. I think it’s because, despite their both knowing he could and might someday swat her like a fly, she still treats him exactly the same way she treats everyone else. The best part of season three is watching him and Filia get under each other’s skin. By season 4/5 his shtick is getting a little tired, and he spends too much time with his eyes open (i.e., getting ready to do something “Monstrous”); that is no longer save that for special occasions.
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby bakamatt » Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:10 pm

Favorite characters, cont'd.

Kosaki Onodera (Nisekoi): my waifu. Cute, kind, hard-working, strong, and actually displays traces of a libido. If she were willing to take the initiative, she’d have had Raku neatly tied up by volume two, and I’d wish she did except then there’d be no story. For me her defining moment is when she (politely, of course) refuses to let Marika take her place in the class play as Juliet to Raku’s Romeo. This is one anime girl who knows what she wants and is willing to assert herself (a little) to get it. (Although not be nuts about it, like Marika.) That whole Romeo and Juliet story arc is pretty special: in addition to Kosaki’s assertiveness, Chitoge and Raku get good scenes as well, and we see just how far Shu is willing to go to show himself a good time. In a whole galaxy of waifu, how many of them actually go so far as to bloody well ask to be kissed, as she did on one occasion.
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Re: What I'm Watching

Postby bakamatt » Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:11 pm

Characters, cont'd.

Saki Kasukabe (Genshiken): one of those “one sane characters”, there’s a big irony in Saki. For all that we’re made to like all the “formal” members of the Genshiken, she’s the one who, by keeping one foot in the real world, is actually in the process of becoming a good, productive Japanese citizen while having a good time doing it. Madarame quits his real-world job, Kugayama hates his (and that’s so sad), and the rest seem to be well on the way to not-especially-respectable jobs at best. It’s as if the message is, “Yes, love these characters, but they really are the losers society thinks they are”, a message which seems to be reinforced in the “second season”. Saki’s great strengths are knowing what she wants and being a coper. She wants Kosaka and if the Genshiken is the overhead she has to put up with to get him, so be it. Of course, she also comes to accept, even enjoy, bits of the Genshiken life, another way of coping. She even comes to treat Madarame with compassion and maybe even a little grudging respect, though I find it impossible to believe she’d actually ever consider hooking up with him if Kosaka wasn’t around.
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