Tag Archives: supernatural

Thoughts about Gate 7

Chikahito Takamoto is a normal high school student from Tokyo visiting his dream city of Kyoto. While visiting a site, he comes upon a battle that has the warriors just as perplexed to see him there. Within months, he moves back to the old capital and there he begins a life with Hana, Tachibana and Sakura.

Fans familiar to Card Captor Sakura, xxxHolic or many of CLAMP’s other manga shouldn’t feel out of bounds with picking up and reading Gate 7. The first volume reminds me a mixture of CLAMP’s other works Kobato, X and xxxholic. Other similar reads should be series like Natsume’s Book of Friends or Mushishi for paranormal stories beyond. The artwork of CLAMP is superb as always. I wouldn’t be surprised to see if Gate 7 gets picked up for anime series. For now though this series has been picked up to be translated into English by Dark Horse, so it is bound to be available at comic retail stores.

Rarely has it been to my knowledge of manga set in Kyoto. Much of CLAMP’s works are set in Tokyo with the fantastic view of Tokyo Tower as a cultural reference, but perhaps CLAMP is trying to explore settings outside of Tokyo is their way of featuring Japan to the rest of the world. Their usage of Japanese historical figures are also something not out of the ordinary, since they explained Vedic mythology with RG Veda. I had a fun time reading about the culture and historical notes in this story.

Another point to indicate from this story is Hana’s love for all things noodles, and yes I can only imagine just how much there is to love about noodles. It would like onigiri if you give it a couple of more years. ^_^

Occult Academy 13 drives the Captain Obviouses away?

…You wanna know why a lot of popular movies are ripped to shreds (including the original Star Wars)? Because critics are cynics.

Yes, Ray declares another defeat. He ripped Occult Academy to pieces and then watched the last episode. No, the last episode isn’t super great. But at least, it kind of redeems itself.

Even if it’s just a little.

Continue reading Occult Academy 13 drives the Captain Obviouses away?

Dance in the Vampire Bund 1 – Misfired Mockery.

OK, this was what I expected:

But this is what I got instead:

Needless to say, I was not happy with what I got. I know it’s the only the first episode and Shinbo directs it, but the apparent over-mockery didn’t escape my eyes. What the first episode served was to make a snide social commentary about Japanese talk shows with a game-like format and obviously staged events and guests pretending to give a shit or that they are actually as surprised as everyone. All these people serve as icons on TV that fit a certain stereotypes to please the audience mindlessly following everything going on without giving any thoughts or reflections. I got one thing to say:

It IS the internet age now.

Continue reading Dance in the Vampire Bund 1 – Misfired Mockery.

Hulu Hoop – 2nd Rotation – Ghost Hunt

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‘Twas a dark and stormy night.  The room felt vaguely humid as I sat upon my chair pondering and clawing at my hair, trying hopelessly to find a speckle of inspiration to fill the void of white paper trussed into my typewriter.  The clock on the wall chimed three times shattering the stagnant silence that had been festering in the room.  I cursed under my breath when came a knock, three times, at the door…   “Who is it?” I called out in vague annoyance.  No answer.  I picked myself up trying to put aside frustration and answered the door.  There was nothing behind it, only air…

Oooooooooooo, spooky spooky…

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Continue reading Hulu Hoop – 2nd Rotation – Ghost Hunt

Bakemonogatari 12 – sweet and ironic tasting note

I guess this is the season ending episode. For fans of  Senjogahara, this was probably the episode they’ve been waiting for or wishing for, and surely it delivered. Senjogahara takes over the entire episode and shows the audience who is the queen among the harem, biatches.

As if hearing some folks’ complaint about Senjogahara (henceforth known as SJgH in the succeeding paragraphs) being missing in the previous episodes, this episode we’re treated with her on a date with Mr. Messiah Complex Nice Guy. He’s expecting something wonderful, and instead, it’s meet the parent time.

The long awkward car ride is amusing at best and annoying at worst. However, the interaction is superb if just a tiny little bit unbelievable. Everything happens, however, has a deeper meaning behind it

This probably doesn’t work in real life, but if your girlfriend actually takes you on your first date, together with her dad, and she trust her dad not to beat the crap outta ya, that means she AND her DAD trust you. We see that in this episode. No matter how harem-like the series had become, in the overall story, Araragi really makes  SJgH happy, so much so that she tosses out bold verbal hints or rather, commands, as to bid him closer. Forcing him to say her first name rather than last name in the presence of her dad shows that she wants to show the other important man in her life that this guy is the prince, the knight in the shining high school uniform riding on a white bicycle that comes to save the violent tsundere twintail-free princess from all her losses. The fact that her dad does not even flinch or cringe during her teasing sessions for Araragi also shows a strong sense of approval, albeit it may be cringe worthy for the audience (if there are dads in the audience).

The problem was that this is a supernatural show and I thought her dad wasn’t real; it was some kind of apparition or something. I’m so used to not seeing real parents in anime it was a shock when he started talking and sharing! HOLY CRAP! This guy is real! He talks!

The 3rd part of the show where they get sweet on us is a little weird in that Kanbaru is part of SJgH’s possession and she’s willing to share “that” with Araragi…Now, that lost me. But for any fans looking for the shining moments of love, I will not get into details here but I will tell you to enjoy.

After all, this is the most normal episode filled with enough abnormality that it’s almost ironic.

Additional notes: Although Saito Chiwa is obviously the highlight, the voice actor for her father is superb and the talk in the car probably should go down as one of the best intimate sharing moments in any dramatic story, followed by the scene of the lovers lying on the picnic blanket. In addition, of course I could get into how this show is an interesting portrayal of awkward teen romance, how SJgH’s heart and social awkwardness is slowly healed by Araragi and all that jazz. But that’s best left to other folks with greater interest in the show.

Bakemonogatari 11 – I’m in Despair!

Doom! Doom! Doom! Doom! I’m in despair! I’m in despair that this show is finally admitting of being a harem show!

Oh boy, Segoku’s the appearance in this episode really doesn’t serve any purpose at all. I mean, if you think it does then please tell me, but the way I see it, Sengoku Nadeko shows up to be a loli moe service blob and Araragi just acts out (almost) the desire that all Japanese school girl lovers need to express. Oh and don’t forget, Shinobu or whatever her real name is, stares at Senjogahara and Sengoku with jealous eyes but gazes at Araragi and Oshino with loving eyes!

Like a good young, innocent harem girl, Nadeko simply doesn’t seem to understand how close she is to be raeped by him.

Doom! Doom! Doom! Doom! I’m in despair! I’m in despair because the most interesting character isn’t showing up again!

Um…Senjogahara has to be the most interesting character in this show with her charming wit, whether you’re FASCINATED with her or not (I’m OK), but she isn’t here again. I think her seiyuu, Saito Chiwa, is sick and can perform. Unless the story calls SJgR to be absent and then come back to question all Araragi’s acts shared with all the other girls or calls her to act like Akari from To Heart one anime, I think something smells like cat’s poo here.

So. I was wrong about Tsubasa’s vast knowledge has something to do with a monster. We see a more serious problem – a problem that doesn’t seem to make sense at all to me – that her mom’s new husband and her dad’s new wife are her parents now. If that isn’t bad enough, they’re Japanese people in the harsh society they’re in. Or to put it precisely, the weight falls squarely on Tsubasa’s shoulders. She’s a child with potentially “problematic” family and God knows how many jeers and snickers she has heard from others? But she was inspired to be an excellent student and she probably worked her ass off while enduring stress from all directions.

However, the issue lies deep within her family. One smack on the face may be the indication that there has been many more abuses; or it may not. It is anime so take everything with a grain of salt. FYI, parents in Asia used to exert more physical punishments on their kids, at least in Taiwan, and most kids grew up OK. But in any case…

Hanekawa Tsubasa’s story happened before Senjogahara’s story, and you know, not too much unlike a certain murderous anime romance story, Tsubasa has been doing all she can to help Araragi and Senjogahara to be together and stay together. But as this is a harem show at the core – serious themes or not (harem shows can have very serious themes), you know that she likes Ararararagi’s too.

Her stressed had already exploded during Golden Week. But her headaches haven’t gone away.

Enjoy Hoc-chan’s performance, please.

Because there are so many cats, is it possible that the Cat monster hasn’t gone away for good?

Is this a real disease in her head?

Additional notes: imitating Gainax, this episode has some parts that purposely avoided having to animate character’s lips and other delicate parts. And because it’s imitating Gainax, some of those shots seem to be make sense but for any Evatard out there, as soon as you see those shots/scenes, you’ll begin to wonder.

Play your own version of the music when the hero getting the important item in a game like Zelda, Final Fantasy, etc during the scene where Araragi Koyomi gets the bloomer and Japanese school girl swimsuit for maximum fun~oh and if you have some girls’ intimate wear, please sniff and play with them for maximum humor!

Also, why explain in large texts that a flashback is a flashback? Are we stupid? No. As they say in writing, Show, don’t tell. Flashing texts and all just gets really annoying after a while. What the hell is the point? Because of the last episode, I have been in despair and I can’t trust them at all!

This is what I would love to see – all the bakemono fights over Arararararanenenenennyanyanyanyanonononononunununununyonyonyonyonyonenenenenegi Koyomi in a bakemono-death match in oil and jello! AWESOME! Get sumu get sumu get sumu!

Bakemonogatari 10 – RIP OFF!

This is an important episode; it’s the episode for defeating the monster. This is usually the episode with some kind of action.Well, what did I see?

Slides. Stills, Flashing Text imitations and Anno copycats at work and failing poorly.

Continue reading Bakemonogatari 10 – RIP OFF!

The Catchup 2: Shigofumi 4-7

Yes, friends, this is a twisted show

This is a show, in the end, that doesn’t fail to surprise–even if not all the surprises are (in my opinion) welcome. As the mystery of Fumika’s identity continues to deepen, the twists and turns get stranger and the potential for this show to shine–or go off the rails–becomes more evident.

Continue reading The Catchup 2: Shigofumi 4-7

Shigofumi 3 – A Reason to Die

Signed, Shot, and Delivered
Signed, Shot, and Delivered

This now infamous episode doesn’t deserve its notoriety, or at least its censorship. (I’m curious as to what was modified, actually. Anyone know?) Instead it’s a rather interesting, albeit short, meditation on whether one needs to be depressed in order to commit suicide–and what that implies about how we view death and dying.

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Shigofumi 2–Fly High, Yandere?

First there was Spice and Wolf, now there’s Staff and Post
First there was Spice and Wolf, now there’s Staff and Post

Hmm. In what was undoubtedly an effort to end this mini-arc as efficiently and as circularly as possible, did they skimp a bit on some of Asuna’s emotional development? It’s a tough call for me, because I wasn’t entirely satisfied by the ending even though it covered most of the bases. But this is still undeniably an effective show on the whole, with the most potential out of all the shows this season.

Continue reading Shigofumi 2–Fly High, Yandere?

Mokke ep 03 – things that only you can see.

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With all the ills that go on everyday, maybe even currently in your life, maybe this world really isn’t so great after all.

Sometimes you just know it. Only you can see it and you know it’s real. But people would tell you it’s not.

You can see the problem within what seems perfectly normal, but you’re told by others that you’re just being pessimistic or negative.

You know there are ills inside you, something’s not quite right, but all your friends, your parents and/or siblings ever say is “get over it, grow up, don’t worry about it.” Even when you’re over 30.

In Japan, people may even tell you to accept it. In US, we tell people to move on.

No, I’m not talking self-help or therapy, but looking at this episode makes me reflect on things.

Continue reading Mokke ep 03 – things that only you can see.