Turmoil finds its way into Bunny Mountain Market when Choi tells Tamako that she is the bride for the prince that Dera has been searching for all this time. Like with most things Tamako is relatively unphased by the news and expresses doubts that she is actually the prince’s bride. To her it is no big deal, and she goes about her days as though nothing has changed. The people around her, however, are thrown into a state of confusion as they suddenly find themselves faced with the prospect of Tamako leaving and torn between their desire to see Tamako happy and to not see her leave.
Aida Mana, the leading girl of DokiDoki! Precure, is a character that is ridiculously competent. The student council president, a very hard worker, and someone who is always willing to extend a helping hand to others, Mana is the type of person that parents and adults look at with pride and peers look up to with respect. But while she is so independent, Aida Mana is hardly the perfect young girl, and her particular character traits, and resultant problems, allow for different types of character exploration. Episode two of DokiDoki takes a look at one of these problems in an episode about being willing to ask someone else for help and the alienating effect of trying too hard by yourself.
Though it has been close to a year since the first season finished airing, season two of Chihayafuru picks the story up right where we left off without losing a single bit of it’s charm. One thing that I’ve always liked in particular about this show is its portrayal of the competitive aspects of Karuta. Not only because it makes for a very intense story, but also because competitive games have always been a big part of my life. Growing up I played in quite a few Chess tournaments around the country. I competed and placed in tournaments, some even on national level, and on occasion even participated in teams. In recent years I’ve also begun playing League of Legends, and while not as serious as my Chess experience, I still try to be competitive both as a solo player and with my team. Chihayafuru really resonates with me because the experiences and the struggles of the characters remind me so much of my own experiences in the competitive world. And as we enter the show’s second season, and the Karuta club is forced to pick up additional members, Chihayafuru once again impresses me with its depiction of team dynamics.
That’s the question I found myself asking once episode nineteen finished and it’ll be the theme of this post. Follow with me and as we take a look at ALO as a game. Let’s forget about Kirito, Leafa, Asuna, and all the other characters and plot and just look at the system. ALO suffers from some hideous balance issues, but there are also appealing aspects to the game that sometimes get forgotten amidst all of the problems. Unlike the death-trap that was Sword Art Online, ALO offers a large world to safely explore and adventure in. The ability to fly is also a tremendously appealing aspect of the game that offers a completely new experience from real-life.
Today I’d like to talk about an aspect of the anime episode that is almost always present, the ending sequences. These animation sequences (lasting about a minute and a half each) are often skipped by viewers and are easily forgotten. However, while it is easy to forget about these sequences, they do contribute (sometimes significantly) to the overall presentation of an anime episode. For good or for bad, there are times when the ending sequences stand out and I will be highlighting some of those instances in this post.
Steins;Gate was a personal favorite from the previous year and recently I decided to revisit the show. A brilliant sci-fi show, Steins;Gate has a great cast of characters and a compelling plot that manages to incorporate time-travel in a way that doesn’t make the story fall flat on its face. There is also something else that I liked about the show, that I don’t think gets much mention, and that would be the nature of scientific research as it is portrayed in Steins;Gate.
I think it would be safe to say that opinions on Eureka Seven: Astral Ocean have been very polarized. Perhaps it was inevitable with Bones reviving an extremely popular franchise as a lot of fans of the original Eureka Seven have expressed discontent with Astral Ocean. If you have read any of my weekly Anime Power Ranking picks then you will have a general idea of my thoughts on Astral Ocean. Recently, though, I have begun to lean towards the thought that Eureka Seven: Astral Ocean simply should not exist. Rather, it should simply be Astral Ocean because the Eureka Seven franchise name has been too much of a detriment to it.
Before I began watching shows as they aired, I would choose my anime very carefully from review sites such as Anime-Planet or The Nihon Reivew. In doing so I got to see a number of really great anime, but it also severely limited my exposure to the medium. In time I began watching a lot more anime and I became less particular about what I did watch. Following shows as they aired led me to watch a lot of average or mediocre shows and some downright awful ones, but even if they weren’t the best things around, I still found that there was a lot of benefit to watching them.
Chihayafuru is a show that I did not cover at all in the two seasons that it aired, but it was easily one of my favorites from the past two seasons. It wasn’t perfect, but the show did a really good job of exploring a competitive game and the people that play it. When I was younger, I played a lot of chess. Not just with family or friends or in some small club, but competitively. I played in a large number of tournaments and even traveled to different states to compete in national tournaments. Chess and Kurata are fundamentally very different games, but Chihayafuru did an excellent job of portraying the spirit of competition that is common between them. Continue reading →