Let's talk anime.

Yeah, some titles don't translate well to anime. I was a bit disappointed with Eminence, didn't get through enough Oji-san to form a view. Can't recommend the light novel of Eminence and manga for Oji-san highly enough. For the latter, the art style is not as pretty as say Kaguya-sama or Vampire Knight but the comedy is worth it. The male characters are reminiscent of the Initial D manga for the characters. Which is to say, uh, not visually attractive. Mangaka manages to make the female characters pretty though.

I contrast that to, say, Kimetsu no Yaiba (Demon Slayer). The animation is amazing. My daughter is obsessed with the anime (only season 1 on Netflix) so we got her the manga box set. She's happily reading her way through them.

Reborn to Master the Sword has an interesting protag. Finished with a life of selflessness and heroism, a king's goddess asks him what he wants for a reward. He asks to be reborn to be able to live for himself. Wish granted! Reborn as a girl ages in the future, she now lives only for the sword.

Kinda weird in that she's reborn assigned as a girl, and she appears to more or less be reconciled to it. She still desires women and still thinks of herself as a man, but doesn't appear to experience gender dysphoria at all. Nonbinary?

Finally sat down and watched Jin-Roh: The Wolf Brigade this week.

I saw that it had been criticized for its... uh... "deliberate" pace and boy howdy, they weren't kidding! A whole lot of Mamoru Oshii's output is definitely.... "deliberate."

I didn't hate it, and it certainly looked absolutely lovely. But I probably won't be watching it again anytime soon.

Up next, the sci-fi anthology Memories, and then finally getting around to watching Golden Boy since apparently, it's entirely on YouTube.

Necro. My first in a while nuisance. One streaming service for season 1, another for season 2 and a third for season 3. Geez. streaming should be easier not harder than piracy.
Teasing Master Takagi ..

Atypical Isekai is my current favorite. Reborn as a vending machine is silly.

Currently watching the Villainess to Savior otome isekai thing. It’s kind of different? Way more dramatic than the other otome shows I’ve watched thus far. I suppose it’s female wish fulfillment except that “I can fix this guy,” becomes “I can fix this WORLD.”

The other isekais I’m watching are the patisserie one and Mushokou Tensei. Dark Gathering is proving to be an interesting series so far. Modestly creepy.

Watched the slime movie about the slime that becomes OP. I forget the name. The movie was okay. It was like a extra episode of the show instead of a recap. Skippable.

Just watched the fight between King and Zorro from One Piece. The final fight was very good. I wonder if they blown their load early. Still have Big Ma vs Law and Kid and Luffy vs Dragon man. I think everyone else has had their big fight.

I have one episode to go of Devilman Lady. The original Devilman showed up out of nowhere. I think the story kind of fell apart but maybe it will pull together at the end.

Stocking up before a trip. I can’t depend on streaming abroad.

Haven't watched anime in a while but I'm looking forward to below. I read the manga and it's just lovely. Funny, and sweet but with some heartfelt moments. The trailer seems to look really good too. So pretty optimistic.

Watched live action Bleach. Did not like. Done by the same guy that did the live action Death Note which I kind of liked.

I think the main problem is you can't do a live action show of anime with a billion episodes.

Baron Of Hell wrote:

I think the main problem is you can't do a live action show of anime with a billion episodes.

IMAGE(https://variety.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/One-Piece-Netflix.jpg?w=1000)

Been watching more Mushoku Tensei. It’s a different sort of isekai. Like, a lot of folks will say this is “peak” isekai. I don’t know whether I’d agree with that, but it is different.

Point 1. Rudeus is the protagonist and he’s kind of a creep. Scratch that. He’s a total creep. He was before he reincarnated, and his childhood didn’t really fix that much so it’s still a problem. The difference is that the show doesn’t shy away from showing that it’s a problem and when he’s being a creep it’s not always played for comedic effect. He really does come off as a creep. He’s trying to get better. It doesn’t always work.

Point 2: The creep fails. Like, a lot. He’s still a very powerful individual and he’s destined to be a major mover and shaker in the world, but he’s generally bad with women in particular, and everyone in general. His lack of charisma isn’t his only issue. He’s also not invincible so when he bites off more than he can chew, he does get his ass kicked. Which would probably make you feel worse about it if he weren’t a total creep.

To be clear, this isn’t some depressing Welcome to the NHK sort of deal, but the main character isn’t invincible, makes a ton of mistakes the show clearly portrays as mistakes, and he’s trying but failing a lot. It’s a refreshing change from the typical isekai fantasy where the protagonist often is invincible and can do no wrong.

It’s a refreshing change from the typical isekai fantasy where the protagonist often is invincible and can do no wrong.

Sure, BUT IMO the way they go about displaying this and fleshing it out can be pretty gross. I had to drop this anime after the first few eps of season 2. The anime just goes about this discovery in (IMO) about the worst way possible.

Yeah I love isekai and know that one has a lot of fans. But I couldn't get over the creep factor. Plenty of other isekai for me. Actually should cut down on those. I'm probably in the hundreds at this point.

There are plenty of isekai with squeaky clean protagonists and straightforward power fantasies. That’s really the more mainstream offering. I’d say even Overlord is more mainstream, and Ainz is a lot of things but he’s not an awkward, creepy POS. MT is mainstream because the LN and manga was well received, but consider the market where it was well-received. That’s a Japanese otaku market.

The anime is the sort of thing where you think “Why you gotta be like this, Rudeus? Don’t be like that, man,” and then he crashes and burns and you’re like, “Well, he got that coming.” It’s not quite Rent-A-Girlfriend, but it feels like it’s kind of having some vibes in that direction. Rudeus will definitely turn a lot of people off, and the many times he just crashes hard probably isn’t entertaining enough to make up for it unless you empathize with that struggle in some fashion.

Yeah I can agree with that, its just that joke doesn't land for me anymore. The Roshi like character. It supposed to be funny in the moment. Like laugh with/at the character about there behavior. But it tends to bounce hard for me. Maybe more cultural issue. Also stuff that comes from LN also tends to be crazier in this way then manga. Less passes through an editors from I've seen.

Oddly I disliked Overlord a lot for the reasons you mentioned. They portray the characters as mainstream loveable group of close nit people. Then they commit mass murder, torture, and slavery. Worse in the bits of the LN. You can have evil or anti hero main characters but if ping pong their behavior it's a hell of tonal whiplash. In comparison something like The Saga of Tanya the Evil pulls it off better.

Man, My Happy Marriage just got real. LOL. I mean, it’s kinda true that Miyo is part of the nobility, but it looks like it’s about to go hard into fantasy feudal politics.

Watched the first episode of Zom 100. The animation is pretty good. The show is billed as a horror comedy. There is a lot of social commentary on Japanese corporations treating their employees badly. I didn't find it funny. The show is about a dude that is happy about the zombies because now he can complete his bucket list and do all the things he wanted to do. The world going to hell has freed him.

I see what they are going for but the show comes off as selfish I guess. The protagonist falls in love with his coworker on first sight. She also happens to be the boss's mistress. She is just a lady to be fridged. I never got the sense the protagonist cared for her beyond a thing to confess his love for. Was she being forced to be Boss's plaything? The protagonist doesn't seem to care nor does he seem to care about anyone. I guess I just didn't find his lack of caring funny.

It seems clear we the audience are suppose to side with protagonist and cheer him on. He works so hard. He given this company all of his blood and sweat. Now the zombie outbreak has come to free him but F everyone else I guess.

Just watched most of Tondemo Skill de Isekai Hourou Meshi. Was reading it before but didn't know the anime was made. Slice of life isekai about a salaryman, a giant wolf/fenrir, and a slime. Mostly about food and cooking. Legit made me hungry while watching. Nothing crazy but a nice relaxing show. And the family dynamic between the three is cute.

Baron Of Hell wrote:

Watched the first episode of Zom 100. The animation is pretty good. The show is billed as a horror comedy. There is a lot of social commentary on Japanese corporations treating their employees badly. I didn't find it funny. The show is about a dude that is happy about the zombies because now he can complete his bucket list and do all the things he wanted to do. The world going to hell has freed him.

I see what they are going for but the show comes off as selfish I guess. The protagonist falls in love with his coworker on first sight. She also happens to be the boss's mistress. She is just a lady to be fridged. I never got the sense the protagonist cared for her beyond a thing to confess his love for. Was she being forced to be Boss's plaything? The protagonist doesn't seem to care nor does he seem to care about anyone. I guess I just didn't find his lack of caring funny.

It seems clear we the audience are suppose to side with protagonist and cheer him on. He works so hard. He given this company all of his blood and sweat. Now the zombie outbreak has come to free him but F everyone else I guess.

I am not Japanese, but I get the impression that the show is supposed to be going against very prototypical Japanese values in a good and fun, irreverent way. It does this in anime and with a "comedy/fantasy" lens because it would be too painful and triggering to address directly. I'm not going to apologize for the fridging and the generally bad representation of women here. It's bad that it does that.

But this entire thing of being liberated because you don't have to give a f*ck for anyone else in the world is pretty alien and foreign as a social concept to their culture. Akira comes off as selfish, short-sighted, shallow, and stupid. I do not believe the anime is portraying him as being an idealized sort of anything. It is pretty forward and direct about the shortcomings of its protagonist, and that criticism of him only becomes funnier and more exaggerated in the next episodes.

It does appear to be subtly contrasting it against a saner, more Japanese-positive character in Shizuka. She's focused on survival. Akira is committed to death. He has given up on survival. He only wants to achieve as many of his personal goals as possible before he kicks the bucket. This makes him not only driven, but fearless. I'll point out that this individualism driving him isn't a Japanese value, nor even an Asian value, but an American one. The "bucket list" itself is an American cultural item. And yeah, I'm not American. It's probably a lot more cultural interesting to me to watch it, being neither Japanese nor American.

I don't think we're supposed to cheer on Akira nor take his side. He's not a particularly likable nor admirable person by any cultural standard. But given my very limited understanding of Japanese culture, it's an examination of how an otherwise normal person would act when completely unmoored from their moral obligations. His social maturity and empathy have been critically damaged and stunted by his time in a black company, and the utter destruction of his core moral compass by the mass death of everyone around him means he has essentially nothing to do with his time other than to seek personal fulfillment.

He is, essentially, a ronin in a modern zombie apocalypse.

The Apothecary Diaries was a surprise trailer to me. Didn't know or thing it was getting an adaptation. I read it currently and it's a really good historical drama/mystery/comedy. The trailer was really good too.

This plus Frieren and a big maybe for A Returner's Magic Should be Special. I might actually watch a decent amount instead of just reading it.

Edit: Well huh a huge chunk of stuff I've read is getting an anime.

Berserk of Gluttony - Edgy fantasy with power fantasy. The manga was solid although I remember dropping due to lack of interest.

The Faraway Paladin: The Lord of the Rust Mountains - I saw season one of this and it was good but I've almost dropped the manga. Then all of a sudden it started getting really good again. Gonna have to watch for stuff to rip off for DnD alone.

I Shall Survive Using Potions! - I read this for a little bit. It was pretty trash with the occasional bit of war crimes.

My Daughter Left the Nest and Returned an S-Rank Adventurer - I'm a sucker for father daughter/son stuff. Assuming it doesn't try to be creepy. This one was really nice. Looking forward to it.

Under Ninja - I've only read random chapters of this one. And every chapter was insane. I honestly couldn't tell if it was trying to be a gag manga or a serious drama or both. That said I heard good things.

Watched Demon Slayer Swordsmith Village arc and liked it but not as much as the other seasons. The show repeats the same story beats each season which works but is getting old. The animation is still good. The fights are still good. The characters are still good but a some of the new characters are under served and I missed the regular crew that didn't make it in this season.

I really liked the new girl but her backstory was to girly. All the dudes have the same demon kills their family backstories. She gets I can't get married because of my pink hair and everyone thinks normal size is fat backstory. Kind of odd because she is also big time fan service girl. She has one of the best weapons in the series. I love whipswords.

I wanted more from the gun guy. His backstory was so rinse and repeat with the other dudes. I wanted to know why did he pick a gun for his weapon. I wanted to know where did he get consume ability. And his backstory doesn't really explain why he is suck big D. This is also story beat repeat. Every dude has to be big D a first until they are won over through the power of fighting together. Twin guy makes more sense being a jerk because he wasn't aware he was being a jerk.

The vase demon was downgrade. I'm not sure why he was higher rank than the other demons in the previous seasons. The feelings was much better. You could see why how many demon slayers could be killed by him. The only odd thing I found was that since he was so OP he should have taken out all the demon slayers in the world. Why wasn't this dude doing assassination hits on demon slayers. There doesn't appear to be a way for just one demon slayer to take him out.

I give this season 8 swords of slaying out of 10. Good season just not as good as the others.

So after that big list of shows I mentioned this is probable the first time in a long while I'm watching anime much less multiple. So some thoughts:

Frieren absolutely excellent. Top tier and might be one of my favorites period. Just crazy beautiful. It has so much thought and feeling in it. Highly recommended.

The Apothecary Diaries , also very good. Good fun and actually really funny. MaoMao is a great character. The romance part seems a bit stronger then from the reading, but the intrigue and mysteries are still center stage. Great drama overall with the right amount of charm and silliness.

My Daughter Left the Nest and Returned an S-Rank Adventurer , this was ok. Which is basically what I expected. Nice father daughter story with a bit of action and comedy. Nothing crazy but a fun cast.

The Faraway Paladin: The Lord of the Rust Mountains I enjoyed this but was also disappointed. A real lack of a budget hurt this show. Where animation had to cut corners and such. Which is too bad cause it has some really high quality story. So I enjoyed it but comparing it to what it could be, or the manga, leaves it really lacking sadly. For example the scene with the Dragon is one of the greatest things I've read. Here its ok or even a bit dull. Read the manga instead.

And lastly, Solo Leveling just had its first episode. Really high quality art and animation so far. It was mostly world building and exposition, but a real positive sign.

Watched the movie One Piece Red and liked it. A musical movie meant to get you to buy a soundtrack. I think the movie is suppose to be cannon but there is one rather big mama of a mistake that doesn't make it fit perfectly with the series.

I think this is my second favorite One Piece movie. I liked Gold a little better. There was a lot to like in this movie. We get to see a bit of Shanks power. However, the separation of Red Hair pirates and the Straw Hat pirates was kind of silly. I know they want that meeting to be done in anime or manga first. The alt bad guy was silly even for this show. The last low point was having a musical movie without the Soul King doing music.

Animation was on point. And I got the soundtrack so they won.