December 19, 2014

Fairy Tail S2 ep 38 -- Hi Ho Sagittarius, and away!

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I'm trying to find a word. An "anachronism" is a thing in the wrong time, like seeing a Roman legionary wearing a wrist watch. The word I want refers to a thing which doesn't belong in any time at all, like seeing a dragon flying over a battlefield full of main battle tanks.

Whatever that word is, Erza is it this episode. How the heck does she know what a cowboy looks like? As far as I can tell, there are no horses in the Fairy Tail world. I think I saw one, just one, early in the series but since then zip. Wagons don't get drawn by horses; they use giant pigs instead. No one rides horses; in fact, no one rides any animal. The only riding we've seen is on ships, trains, and wagons (drawn by giant pigs), and the occasional magically-powered car.

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Well, I don't care; Erza the Cowgirl still looks pretty damned good.

UPDATE: There's an aspect of this story line I don't like: Yukino and Lucy are having the most trouble in their fights. Elfman defeated Taurus, Mirajane defeated Pisces, Gajeel and Lily defeated Gemini, Wendy defeated Aquarius, Kana defeated Scorpio, Levy defeated Capricorn, Gray defeated Cancer, Juvia defeated Aries, Erza defeated Sagittarius.

Which leaves Leo, Virgo, and Libra. (And Ophiuchus.) Leo has been dodging his fight with Natsu, and Lucy and Yukino, the actual celestial wizards, have been doing amazingly badly against Virgo and Libra respectively. Somehow it doesn't seem fair that celestial wizards should be so useless. But I guess it makes sense because neither of them can use their power (to summon spirits to fight for them). Everyone else's power is unaffected.

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Lagniappe

I got my latest order from Robert's Anime Corner Store today, and they tossed in a handful of official "Robert's Anime Corner Store" chocolate dollars. It's good chocolate, too.

Oh, and it was shipped the day after I ordered, as always. Even though it's Christmas season and presumably they're very busy. (I hope they're busy; I've heard that this year's Christmas shopping season has been a disappointment for some places!)

UPDATE: I wonder if this is something like coffee mugs and T-shirts where there are businesses in the business of making custom ones with your very own logo or graphic on them?

Seems like it must be. How long before Cafepress starts offering them?

UPDATE: So what did I buy? For the last year, the mascot on my computer table has been Katsuragi from Senran Kagura, and I decided it was time for a change. More below the fold.

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December 18, 2014

Metanorn Winter 2015 preview

There are some shows listed that didn't make the chart.

UPDATE: Oh, no. Miritari is only 5 minute episodes. Damn.

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December 16, 2014

Fairy Tail -- grumble, sigh

I was really looking forward to this week's chapter of the Fairy Tail manga, but it seems that they always skip the third week in December.

I can't exactly blame them; the mangaka is entitled to some time off. But damn it, why now? The story is kind of in a real cliff-hanger moment.

Anyway, I have some more thoughts about the One Magic:

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December 15, 2014

Winter 2015 preview

Time to look ahead to the Winter 2014 season.

Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei Bu Love! may be a spoof. It's a magical girl show except that all the girls are guys. They gain their powers by being given special bracelets by a magical animal, in this case a wombat. The bad guys also have a magical animal, a hedgehog. I can't imagine watching it, but it'll be interesting to hear about it from someone else. If it's not a comedy, then it's going to be a complete trainwreck. (Or a reverse harem, though there isn't any credit for a main girl.)

Miritari! might be awesome. Two of the main characters are gun girls, and the main publicity shot shows one of them with a hand grenade with the pin pulled. The characters are chibified so it obviously isn't going to be serious.

Absolute Duo: we already saw this, when it was called Seirei Tsukai no Blade Dance.

Dog Days'' is back and this time it's called "double-dash" (because of two apostrophes, and don't ask). From the description it isn't going to be what I thought it was (a grand quest to find and destroy the source of the evil swords). Instead, it's going to be episodic like the second series. Presumably Nanami is going to get a hero stone, so we'll get to see what she's going to look like as an adult.

Shinmai Maou no Testament: We already saw this, when it was called KissxSis. (Well, not exactly; it's more like KissxSis crossed with High School DxD.)

Juuou Mujin no Fafnir: We already saw this, when it was called Infinite Stratos.

IDOLM@STER: Cinderella Girls: We already saw this about a thousand times, when it was named about a thousand other things. (I do not understand the attraction of idol shows, but I guess I don't have to.)

Kantai Collection -Kan Colle-: I was wondering how the heck they were going to turn this into a show. The first thing they did was steal from Arpeggio of Blue Steel the idea of a mysterious fleet dominating the Pacific. The only hope for humanity is certain Japanese girls who have the ability to transform into fighting ships (or take on their characteristics?), which is suspiciously similar to the base conceit of Soul Eater, albeit a lot bigger and more spectacular. (Halberds are for wimps.) The girls go to a special school (which probably isn't called Shibusen) and our protagonist is the destroyer Fubuki.

Aside from Dog Days and Miritari, looks like it's gonna be another lean season for me. I'll sample some other things, of course, but I don't have high expectations. I'll certainly give KanColle a try, of course.

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December 14, 2014

Top rotation -- planning the plundering for fall 2014

In general this season started well, with several pleasant surprises, but it's turned out to be a disappointment. It's not the fault of the Japanese, for a change; the subbing circles have let me down. (sob, poor me)

But a lot of shows which I didn't think were worth watching might well still be worth plundering, and since the season is mostly over now I thought I'd check them out.

Amagi Brilliant Park: As far as plunder is concerned, the main problem is that Our Hero is on screen too much. Lots of otherwise good images are spoiled by having a guy (ick) in them. But it's not a total loss, and as long as the Elemental Idols get some reasonable screen time, there should be at least a bit of stuff worth taking.

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Especially Sylphy! There are some good images of Isuzu, too, but she always looks miserable and that doesn't make for good grabs. I figure it'll be low yielding but high quality.

Daitoshokan no Hitsujikai: Lots of cute girls, but Our Hero spoils most shots, and the school uniforms are not flattering. I think this one will turn out to be a total loss. (A quick scan through a few episodes didn't turn up a single image I though was worth taking even as an example.)

Girl Friend Beta: There aren't any boys who are speaking parts, and they only show up occasionally in crowd scenes. The girls are mostly nicely shaped. But the school uniforms are quite unflattering. The only outright cheesecake shot I found when I briefly scanned through the first 10 eps was the gymnast at the beginning of the first episode.

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This was more typical. You can tell that they're girls, I guess. This probably will turn out to be a waste of time. I was hoping for a swimming pool PE scene, but there hasn't been one so far and the way the story is going there probably won't be.

Inou Battle wa Nichijou-kei no Naka de: Our Hero is on screen too much. (This is a common problem with harem shows.) Ep 10 was the first one I looked at, and it was a swimsuit episode. But the first half was lolis, and I despaired. However, the second half featured this girl:

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So maybe. I figure it'll be low yielding but decent quality. Possibly 30 images, if that.

Madan no Ou to Vanadis: Not a problem. Elen alone is enough to make this one worthwhile, and there are several other women who make good appearance.

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Nanatsu no Taizai: Elizabeth and Diane:

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Especially Diane!

Ore, Twintails ni Narimasu: Toaru is certainly worthy of a place in the top rotation, and Yellow is good looking (even if I hate the character). As to the loli, um...

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Trinity 7: Since these two girls are major characters, it's possible this will be worth plundering. It's really a question of what kinds of scenes they're in. Early on there are gratuitous ecchi scenes (which might be too ecchi for me), and later on the show gets grim and gritty.

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As to other shows? I won't be doing Unlimited Blade Works. It's not the kind of show that will have the kind of images I want, and I don't feel like wading through it. (Besides, I did Carnival Phantasm.)

Denkigai no Honya-san appears to have some decent cheesecake but I think it would be too painful to dig them out. Same goes for Cross Ange. Grisaia doesn't have a lot of images I can use -- too many shots spoiled by Our Hero -- and it's a strange aspect ratio so it would be hard to trim to 600*375. (And I don't want to wade through all the blood again.)

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December 11, 2014

Ore, Twintails ni Narimasu -- ep 10

It became apparent quite a while ago that this series concept didn't really have enough substance to fill a complete cour. It would have made an outstanding 4-episode OVA, but at this length they're having to add things which dilute or pollute the original concept, warping it almost beyond recognition.

And with this episode they have finally proved that they've run out of good ideas. Spoilers below the fold.

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Nanatsu no Taizai -- ep 10

This series just telegraphed the greatest fan service tease in the history of anime. Spoilers below the fold.

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December 10, 2014

Gokukoku no Brynhildr

Gokukoku no Brynhildr is a science fiction horror series featuring a lot of dead girls. It's also the video equivalent of a page-turner; I got caught and watched the whole thing, so I didn't get to bed until after 4AM.

There are a lot of good things and bad things, and describing them necessarily involves spoilers, so below the fold we go.

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December 09, 2014

Gokukoku no Brynhildr -- ep 1

I remember when this show was first broadcast and I saw the description of it, mainly being "one high school boy and several cute girls in an astronomy club", so I figured it was the latest in a long line of harem shows.

Well, it's long since finished being released on BD, so I just downloaded a rip in hopes that it might provide top-rotation fodder.. And I was really wrong about it. The OP is strange as all get out; there are four girls and each of them is initially shown covered with blood. The first episode was really spooky, and I'm hooked.

I don't think this is going to be a "dead girls" show, and I don't think it's horror. And if it's magical girlfriend then the emphasis isn't on romance.

The only thing that sits wrong is that two of the girls are talking to each other by radio and start their conversation by saying "CQ CQ". That's not what CQ means, to a ham. (CQ means "I want to talk to someone new. Anyone hearing this, please respond.") But it's a minor point and I'll overlook it.

UPDATE: After ep 2, I have to correct myself. This may well be a horror series. I'm not generally a big one for such things but I may make an exception in this case, at least for another episode or two.

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