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babyeinstein12

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Arakawa Under the Bridge

on Dec 10, 2010

Story
Arakawa under the Bridge may look like an anime for potheads (what with the kappa costume, star mask, and nun with a gun, among other things), but truthfully it’s just a thirteen-episode-long plate of sashimi: it takes a little getting used to, but ends up being absolutely delicious. Especially for me, having just watched the sour Serial Experiments Lain, this land of perpetual sunshine under the bridge was a joy to behold. The anime follows business prodigy Kou Ichinomiya as he attempts to live with an eccentric community under the Arakawa Bridge. As far as story goes... See full review

8/10 story
7/10 animation
8/10 sound
6.75/10 characters
8/10 overall

Serial Experiments Lain

on Dec 7, 2010

Story
If the purpose of Serial Experiments Lain is to get your mind whirling, it succeeds. If its purpose is to get you thinking, not so much. This anime is a hit-or-miss philosophical cesspool that could either captivate or disgust. It’s like swallowing a series of shots that burn your throat and make you either drunkenly euphoric or nauseous. At the time, Serial Experiments Lain was covering ground few had covered before, and people were hailing the work as the turn-of-the-21st-century version of 1984... See full review

6.5/10 story
7.5/10 animation
7/10 sound
6.5/10 characters
6.5/10 overall

Summer Wars

on Aug 22, 2010

Story
Ah, summertime. A golden period of sunshine, vacations, baseball games, and for many of today’s youth, a healthy (or unhealthy) dose of gaming. Among adults gaming has acquired a reputation mostly associated with bad grades, lack of self-discipline, and guns. Many of you who are reading this are probably grounded right now. Solution? Watch Summer Wars with your parents, and not only will you convince them of how this bastion of electronic entertainment will someday save the world, but you will also treat them to a heartwarming reminder on the importance... See full review

9/10 story
9/10 animation
9/10 sound
7.5/10 characters
9/10 overall

Nodame Cantabile: Finale

on Jun 30, 2010

Story
For those expecting something akin to Mahler’s Symphony of a Thousand, look for a different concert program. And before I stop using these weird music metaphors, let me say that Nodame Cantabile: Finale should more aptly be titled Nodame Cantabile: The Movement That Never Resolves Its Leading Tone. Or perhaps The Movement That Never Ends With a Perfect Authentic Cadence. Or even better, The Movement That Ends Up Only Being a Cadenza. (<It's... See full review

6.5/10 story
8/10 animation
7.5/10 sound
6.5/10 characters
7.5/10 overall

School Rumble

on Apr 8, 2010

Story
Sometimes you want life to be better than it is. You don’t mean awesome robots, cool superpowers, or easy panty shots – you would be perfectly happy with popular friends, good old fun, and wannabe lovers lavishing you with their desire. Basically, you want your currently insipid daily routine to rumble with the brilliance of youth. Look no further. School Rumble shines in its magical realism. Within an alternate world charged with energy and social delight, we witness the formula of daily life (and of the Japanese ... See full review

8/10 story
7/10 animation
7.5/10 sound
8.5/10 characters
8/10 overall

Basilisk

on Mar 18, 2010

Story
Those who enjoyed the adventures of Naruto or the violence of Ninja Scroll would most likely pounce on Basilisk faster than you can say kunai. Would those ninja-mongers like it? That’s a tough question. True, Basilisk is a story about ninjas – but it goes deeper than that, and it’s up to the audience to like it for either the right or the wrong reasons. Superficially, the show looks like a regurgitated “Romeo and Juliet” script, except it’s a lot... See full review

7/10 story
8/10 animation
8.5/10 sound
7.5/10 characters
7.5/10 overall

Hanbun no Tsuki ga Noboru Sora

on Dec 31, 2009

Story
Oh the bittersweet joys of a hospital romance. At least, that’s what Hanbun no Tsuki ga Noboru Sora tries so desperately to express, but in the end it succeeds in only becoming a six-episode cliché. Yuichi and Rika are trapped within the sterile white walls of their own malfunctioning bodies – the former by a mild form of hepatitis, the latter a life-threatening cardiomyopathy. The two teenagers fall in love as a matter of course, and they spend their days discussing literature, arguing on the roof, sneaking out, and... See full review

5/10 story
7.5/10 animation
5.5/10 sound
7/10 characters
6/10 overall

Genshiken

on Dec 5, 2009

Story
The lyrics of Genshiken’s ending theme poetically summarize the show’s content: We are not yet adults Both simple and complex, a shiny marble When we looked through it back then It was nothing special, but our world was shining What we see now through this marble in our hands Is a little different, but it will shine on Discreetly next to us Sigh. As a college-aged anime lover myself, these words have affected me to such an extent that I could sing you the song, memorized, this very moment. Never has any other piece, or any other series... See full review

7.5/10 story
6.5/10 animation
8/10 sound
8/10 characters
7.25/10 overall

Yamato Nadeshiko Shichi Henge

on Nov 3, 2009

Story
The term yamato nadeshiko implies an unassuming, graceful, submissive young woman – think of it as the “girl-next-door” (or wallflower) of traditional Japan. In our progressive, modern world, shoujo anime seems to be raising a vendetta against this image, grinding out one loud girl after another to shriek their way into the hearts of romance fans. There exist, however, a few specks of color amidst today’s gray mass of brazen, power-hungry female protagonists. One takes the form of Haruhi Fujioka from the seminal ... See full review

6.5/10 story
5/10 animation
9/10 sound
5/10 characters
6.5/10 overall

Ichigo 100%

on Oct 12, 2009

Story
One afternoon, something incredible happens to Manaka Junpei. As he steps onto the school roof, a beautiful girl sails down from the reddening sky, her skirt thrashing wildly in the wind as her scrumptious strawberry panties are displayed to the world. Embarrassed, she runs away, and the awestruck Junpei sets off on a mission to discover the girl’s identity. Sound interesting? Why, yes it does, even for me. What I don’t understand is how a show with such promising, ecchi-tastic beginnings can melt into one of the blandest pieces of fruit I’ve had the misfortune (or insanity)... See full review

3/10 story
4/10 animation
4/10 sound
2/10 characters
3.5/10 overall

Zero no Tsukaima

on Sep 15, 2009

Story
Wands! Cloaks! A magic academy nestled in the mountains! Sound familiar? Yes, Harry Potter would most likely come to mind, but just take out the Voldemort aspect and replace it with a little ecchi fan service, a lot of romance, and a positive avalanche of cuteness. Zero no Tsukaima offers a playful jaunt into another world and casts a spell that will leave you very much charmed. Louise, referred to as “The Zero” by classmates for her dreadful magical skills, accidentally summons a boy named Saito into her life. The out-of-place Japanese youth finds himself submerged... See full review

7.5/10 story
7/10 animation
7/10 sound
6/10 characters
7/10 overall

Black Cat

on Sep 3, 2009

Story
I must admit that I tend to shy away from action titles. As such, I accept my friend’s loan of Black Cat’s box set with not a little trepidation, intending to skim through the first couple episodes and promptly return the discs with a gracious smile and a feeling of relief. The first disc goes by pleasantly enough, but contrary to plan, I find myself reaching for the next one, until I dazedly realize that no more discs remain. Maybe a mainstream shounen anime doesn’t necessarily equate with artificial juvenilia after all. The plot follows pistol prodigy Train (a.k.a... See full review

7/10 story
8/10 animation
8/10 sound
5/10 characters
7/10 overall

Over Drive

on Aug 28, 2009

Story
In the words of James Matthew Barrie, “I’m youth, I’m joy, I’m a little bird that has broken out of the egg.” If an anime fit this description, it would be Over Drive – trite, pathetically idealistic, yet rapturously poetic all the same. The show, on the surface, appears your run-of-the-mill sports firebrand for the burnt-out and indifferent, packaged within a cycling medium. It remains so in many ways; in others, it transcends to take on a more universal subject: the vastness of the human potential. Yes, we’ve heard this before. But Over... See full review

7/10 story
9/10 animation
7.5/10 sound
5/10 characters
7/10 overall

Nodame Cantabile: Paris

on Aug 21, 2009

Story
Fans of the original Nodame Cantabile, don’t start squealing yet. Actually, let’s just pretend the sequel never happened. As one wades through this eleven-episode piece of thick blancmange, it will feel like meeting an old friend, only to behold that friend very much changed. The show brings its share of giggles -- but only if you're paying attention. Compared to the snappy, energetic hilarity of the original series, Paris unfolds into a mélange of slow, drowsy filler, torpid characters, and charmless bursts of narrative. Despite promising beginnings, the plot... See full review

4.5/10 story
7/10 animation
6.5/10 sound
5/10 characters
5.5/10 overall

La Corda D'Oro ~primo passo~

on Jul 23, 2009

Story
So how often do we hear "shoujo" and "classical music" uttered in the same sentence? Both entities dwell in vastly different realms of substance, media, and mind, and after watching La Corda d’Oro, I am convinced that it should stay that way. For the average shoujo-loving viewer, this series will be nothing more than a delicious catalogue of hot guys (who, as a side note, all happen to play instruments, but that doesn’t really matter). For the classical music junkie, it will twist a dearly beloved genre of music into something more akin to bubblegum... See full review

3/10 story
7/10 animation
7/10 sound
3/10 characters
5/10 overall

Gedo Senki

on Jul 23, 2009

Story
When Miyazaki Goro’s anticipated debut movie hit the screens in 2006, much of the reception was lukewarm, and even a bit unflattering. Let me tell you this: Unless all you care about is a gripping plotline, don’t take those criticisms seriously. Many of the reviewers expected Goro’s film to be yet another Ghibli swashbuckler filled with adventure, intrigue, and fun. Young Miyazaki was unable to escape his father’s shadow (not unlike his film’s protagonist), and his ambitious, very different, work ended up the undeserved target of many preconceived notions. Tales... See full review

7.5/10 story
9/10 animation
8/10 sound
8.5/10 characters
8.5/10 overall