Saturday, December 29, 2012

[Ended] Medaka Box Abnormal: Simple Pleasures

I have to say when I started this season of Medaka Box, I was not expecting much from it. To my surprise, however, it's far more enjoyable than I though it would be. Unlike a story with massive complex plot, Medaka Box Abnormal is all about simple pleasures: simple plot, simple fights, simple twists, and, most importantly, simply trolling around. Yet it isn't like most other simple minded anime, it has a rather...classy feel to it. So long you don't nitpick on the trolling, I think you'd enjoy it.

Final Scoreboard:

Drama: 84 (Shounen)
Comedy: 87 (Some are pretty funny)

Action: 92 (Very exciting)
Art/Animation: 88 (Good)
Sound/Music: 85 (Not bad)
Character: 90 (Trololololol)
Plot: 86 (Troll)
Ending: N/A

Re-watch value: 50 - Maybe

Overall: 89 - Trolling More

Recommendation: With the amount of trolling it involves, I'm not positive whether the ending really indicates there's another season or it's just their trolling as usual. 

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

[Ended] Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun: Interesting Way to End

Like many other animes of similar type, as the anime progresses, it starts to slowly complicate the story by "diluting" the character set. When that happened, in my opinion, Mitty and Haru's progress kind of came to an stand still while all the people around them start to run the show. Though it's clearly a delay tactic by author who doesn't know how or doesn't want to resolve the main conflict, generally I don't consider it a bad thing for this type of anime, because this particular style of comedy gets dull and repetitive rather quickly, without having more characters getting involved to help in terms of the depth and complexity of the plot, my attention for this would run out rather quickly.

As more characters got involved, the story become less of an in-your-face way of making people laugh because most people are not nearly as weird as the main pair. On top of that, the evolving plot also has gotten a bit more serious which made it slightly more difficult to just try to make people laugh all the time. 9 out of 10 animes of this type would not have the main pair resolve their relationships, so how well animes like this end is mostly dictated by how well they can make an conclusion to existing segment. Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun, in my opinion did it rather brilliantly. This is definitely one of the smartest "non-ending" ending episode I've seen.

This series has an additional plus for me: "Mitty" is voiced by my no.1 favorite voice actress, Haruka Tomatsu. While I'd much prefer her to play a more playful role like Lala or Nagi, her voice fits the role of "Mitty" quite well, too.

Final Scoreboard:

Drama: 89 (Lots of it)
Comedy: 95 (This is where it shines)
Action: N/A 
Art/Animation: 88 (Interesting)
Sound/Music: 85 (So so)
Character: 90 (Unique and colorful)
Plot: 86 (Slightly diluted)
Ending: 90 (Very smart)

Re-watch value: 60 - Might still be funny

Overall: 91 - Comedy of the Season

Recommendation: This is hands down the best comedy of the October anime season that no others would come even close. It's definitely

Comedy of the Season for October 2012 Season

Monday, December 24, 2012

[Ended] Code: Breaker : Awkward

I can't quite put my finger to it, but there's this overall awkwardness throughout the series. I think it has something to do with how people were not acting appropriately according to the situation, like towards the end the prime minister's attitude talking to everybody, etc. In addition, Code 1 seems to be jumping from one extreme to another without much of a transition, nor a rationale on how he comes to such extreme plan without considering a plan with, say, lesser extreme methods. It just feels extremely awkward.

Final Scoreboard:

Drama: 76 (Awkward)

Comedy: N/A
Action: 84 (Not bad) 
Art/Animation: 80 (So so)
Sound/Music: 82 (Ok)
Character: 74 (Very one dimensional)
Plot: 78 (Not that good)
Ending: 80 (Somewhat of a climax)

Re-watch value: 20 - Not Needed

Overall: 78 - Mediocre

Recommendation: I'd say you don't need to waste your time on this, even if you have too much time to burn, you can still find better to watch.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

[Ended] Sword Art Online: Lesser Epic

Sword Art Online is probably one of the most talked about anime over the internet in this year. For the most part, I think it's caused by audiences possess different level of background knowledge about SAO series prior to the start of watching the anime series. Sparks fly as people who have seen the story for the first time clash with the light novel loyalists who see this as an adaptation of the original work disagree upon whether certain things in the series have been done well. Since I've never read any of the light novel, my opinion is purely based on the anime itself, not how well the anime adapted the light novel like much of the online discussions are about. On top of that, I've been intentionally avoiding any online discussion related to this topic just so that I won't be tainted by unnecessary information.

Overall, Sword Art Online is a very enjoyable experience. Honestly, you can't talk about SAO without thinking about or comparing to the anime started this genre, the .hack//sign. In fact, SAO is a lot more similar in concept to .hack//sign than many others in the same genre since. But the SAO really brought this genre up to a new level. First half of the series, it focuses mainly on the struggle of how people would behave when they found themselves trapped in a virtual world, while the second half introduces a slightly complex picture where family and friends are involved and the virtual reality is no longer life threatening. You can definitely tell SAO's heritage in light novel as you wouldn't exactly call the story smooth flowing. It feels quite...chuncky. Because of that, there's a lack of "epicness" where it usually require a bit more continuous build up to achieve. Also, I think lack of climax of in the final fights attributed to it as well.

During the final episode, there's an interesting situation, where I think soon we might have to start to coup with in our own world: when the virtual reality you have experienced is so real, even life and death becomes part of it, how would you be able to hold your emotion within the virtual reality without letting it spill over into the true reality.

Final Scoreboard:

Drama: 93 (Highly dramatic)
Comedy: N/A
Action: 94 (Rather epic battles) 
Art/Animation: 90 (Pretty good)
Sound/Music: 96 (Great music)
Character: 94 (Character centric)
Plot: 88 (Arcs)
Ending: 86 (Slightly anticlimactic)

Re-watch value: 60 - Could still be interesting

Overall: 89 - Lesser, but still epic enough

Recommendation: Purely from the anime itself, I think this is a rather epic and enjoyable. Maybe your opinion would be different if you have read the light novel and you're looking at it as an "adaptation". But as far as I'm concern, this is a good series that is well worth your time.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

[Ended] Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai: Deeper Than Appears to Be

At first glance, it looks no different than a blend of extreme moe anime for the purpose of producing more moe. However, the latter half of the series made a 180 turn and painted a rather gloomy picture for rest of the story, very much like how a Key anime usually turns out.

The core of the story is the process how the main character learned to stop using illusions to escaping reality and learn to face it head on. At the same time, however, it also asks the question whether facing reality is where the answer really lies. Would we really be better off rid of chuunibyou? And who to say life isn't really just a huge chuunibyou?

Final Scoreboard:

Drama: 90 (Very well done)

Comedy: 93 (Highly enjoyable)
Action: 91 (Rather impressive for a comedy) 
Art/Animation: 90 (Moe and Action)
Sound/Music: 90 (Fun)
Character: 91 (Significant Depth)
Plot: 93 (Very well done)
Ending: 93 (Great)

Re-watch value: 60 - Maybe, though you won't get much out of it

Overall: 92 - Funny and Emotional

Recommendation: Early on, I almost dismissed it completely because I thought it's just another anime that sells moe. But the latter half of the changed my opinion completely. As for recommendation goes, I think I'd go as far as this is one of the must-watch of the season.

[Ended] Btooom: Supposedly Smart People Do Dumb Things

The biggest problem I have, throughout the story, is the fact you would think longer a character survive in this game, higher their survival IQ would become. Well, it's true for most part of the story, until something critical is about to happen. A that moment, somehow they decide to make dumbest choice, or, acting like a complete noob when he supposedly the top ranked player in the world. On top of that, the amount of naiveness people display in a life and  death situation is just simply stunning.

Final Scoreboard:

Drama: 77 (Very artificial)

Comedy: N/A
Action: 81 (Not exactly impressive) 
Art/Animation: 80 (so so)
Sound/Music: 82 (Eh...)
Character: 78 (Naive, and not bright)
Plot: 74 (Awkward plot devices)
Ending: 80 (Not exactly)

Re-watch value: 0 - Once is More than Enough

Overall: 78 - Naive (and Supposedly Smart) People with Dumb Decisions

Recommendation: If you ask me, I'd say don't waste your time on it.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Btooom: Bouncy Boobies

Currently finished: Episode 11

Not only we get to see Himiko uses her natural deflective armor, we get to see it in sloooow motion. And, um, she seems to be getting an orgasm in the process...

As far as the story goes, so far the story is...just exciting enough for me to keep watching. Aside from the first couple of episodes, the story is more or less linear. I don't think we're going to see any surprises in the last episode, that is, unless they decide not to end the story in this season...