August 27, 2011

Confession Time

With the storm almost upon me I feel the need to confess something I have been holding back for a couple of years.


I liked Pani Poni Dash.

It is a terribly stupid, pointless show but every bonecrushingly inane episode made me laugh. Worse, as the jokes reference everything from Matango to Scott Pilgrim, the fact that I understood many of them is a damming condemnation of my wasted life.

Also: Taeko explains much about the world.

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August 21, 2011


Oh boy...another high school show.

Much like Hidemari Sketch, this show concerns cute girls in a high school who get stressed out over the little curveballs life throws at them.

HIGH SCHOOL OF THE DEAD differs in that the curveballs include flesh eating zombies.

The whole zombie apocalypse idea has been done so often that it is a cliche' and this show breaks no new ground in overall concept. However, it is a very well executed example of the genre.

Now I have heard some complaints about the show and the most persistent one is that the fanservice is excessive. 

There is some truth to this...

Not only are there lots of powertools...

....but we get to see cute, snarky, intelligent girls using said power tools and doing so in a manner not consistent with manufacturer recommendations!

Oh golly willakers!

Oh..wait....yeah...the other fans.
Actually this show did come close to diminishing returns. as it is quite gratuitous in both its horror...

...and occasionally its cheesecake. 

Just think. Men who have never seen real boobs move were paid money to animate this.

However, the show has superb pacing, likable characters and very good writing. The dub is one of the absolute best I have ever heard, with  rapid-fire dialog that is fantastically delivered. The rewrite for the dub is  faithful but a bit more engaging than the subs. This is one of 3 or four shows that I think are better in their US dubbed versions. The American VA's do a stellar job in bringing out the characters They really make this show work with character nuances the subs can't quite catch.

  The show is an excersize in gratuity, but it never bored me and did not devolve into utter nihilism. I quite enjoyed it.

UPDATE: The dubiously researched fluid dynamics animation above is from one particular episode that is...excessively...excessive in that regard. However, switching gears did serve as a welcome respite from the horror. As gruesome and silly as the show can be, it was actually that episode which made it clear that the show is ultimately about people who looked into that dark pit and determined that they will not abandon their humanity. 
Shorter version...HSOTD is a sucking chest wound of awesome.
Slightly spoileriffic character sketches below the fold.

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August 10, 2011

Ga-Rei-Zero Very First Impressions

I've worked down my "to watch" pile to Ga-Rei-Zero.
The set is encased in a very hefty box, over an inch thick. It is being sold only in DVD blue-ray combo packs which gives Funimation an excuse to jack up the price. There is a thin layer of plastic surrounding the box upon which is affixed a sticker that says $44.99. This is a point of some consternation as the price plummeted days after I bought this set. The plastic around the set breaks easily. The box with disc 2 is not individually wrapped, but the one containing the first disc is. It requires a knife to open. Despite the weight and size of the packaging there are no fannish extras in the box whatsoever (aside from a Funimation subscription card but that hardly counts). The only thing accounting for the extra weight and bulk is the presence of 2 discs in a format I did not want. They are packaged with 1 BD and 1DVD in each volume-specific case so I can't even sell the Blueray discs.

Well...those are my first impressions. Sometime this week I'll have to watch it, but first I need to do Queens Blade and Hidemari Sketch reviews...the combination of which I fear might give me whiplash.

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Oh My!

RC Geekgasm!

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August 09, 2011

Quick! Go to Zoopraxiscope

Don has discovered all sorts of wondrous things, including this gem.

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Usagi Drop

   Pulpjunkie provided me with the first episode of this show, which I had high hopes for. It met and rather exceeded those expectations.

Daikichi Kawachi, a thirtysomething Japanese bachelor attends his grandfather funeral. To his astonishment he learns that his grandfather had, 4 years prior, sired Rin, an illegitimate child...a blonde illegitimate child...who he had been raising after the mother abandoned her.

The extended family is utterly appalled by the little girls existence and want nothing to do with her. Despite there being families with kids present, everyone refuses to take the girl and the family meeting quickly becomes an excersize to determine who will get rid of the little girl as quickly as possible. 

Daikichi is sickened by the rough treatment the girl is getting and cannot abide the child being disowned and sent to an orphanage. So he adopts his aunt...thus begins the series.

This is a beautifully done show that highlights the best and worst of humanity.

Particularly jarring in the first episode is the disdain shown towards Rin, a child trying to comprehend the death of her father who she obviously loved very much. Despite this rather dark subject matter, the show manages to be both upbeat and quirky. The balance is pitch perfect. Daikichi is a bit out of his depth and hasn't quite thought this all the way through, (thus comedy) but he is a decent guy and this looks to be a really, really good show.

I highly recommend it.

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August 05, 2011

The Space Princess Equation

John C. Wright has postulated it!

Logically, Catgirl Space Princesses require only a few more variables be added.

Asbobi Ni Iku...which for some reason will be called Cat Planet Cuties in the US

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