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DGFischer

  • Wisconsin
  • Joined Jun 14, 2019
  • 68 / M
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Lovely Complex

May 15, 2022

Lovely Complex ranks high among the romantic comedies in the world of anime, joining with Toradora and Golden Time as apt examples of the best of this genre.  In all these, both gal and guy have issues, but the interplay of Atsushi Otani and Risa Koizumi is annoying personalities at its best.  The chemistry between this pair is electric and toxic in all the best senses. Lovely Complex records the rocky relationship between Risa (who carries the POV through the series) and Otani through their high school years.  Well, not their first year.  We meet this pair and their friends in their... See full review

10/10 story
9.5/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.8/10 overall

Forest of Piano

May 14, 2022

I was surprised that I was making immediate comparisons between Forest of Piano and Your Lie in April.  Okay, there was all that piano music, virtuosi dripping all over.  But ... where was the romance?  Where was the stunningly beautiful although highly eccentric violinist?  But sorry, the Toilet Princess Takako is a case of close but no cigar.  You'll have to find something else to fall in love with ... like great music. Think of Forest of Piano as a story of two families from the opposite sides of the tracks.  The Amamiya clan, wealthy and influential, with all the... See full review

7/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
8.8/10 overall

Violet Evergarden Special

May 9, 2022

It must have been intentional that the thirteen part series of Violet Evergarden would have this open-ended feeling when viewed in its entirety.  Consider the premise.  A girl (whose origins are obscure) has survived a horrendous war in which her beloved Major Gill (whose background is piecemeal) has ordered her to thrive beyond the restrictions of war that has finally, finally come to an end, and peace has been allowed to have its chance.  But peace ushers in a lethargy in the land (whose history is woefully benighted) when the populace begins to cope with the loss of such tragedy. Thus the... See full review

9/10 story
9/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.5/10 overall

Little Busters! Refrain

May 9, 2022

It is hard to explain the hard pivot in mood between the first season of Little Busters, and the second, LB Refrain.  Season one was a lark, with the sense of the comedic and the seeking of fun experiences.  But Refrain was somber, serious, and a trifle too surreal.  The character of Kyousuke, leader of the Little Busters, went from carefree to draw enough collateral damage to make one suspicious of his intentions.  What does he want for sister Rin and best friend Riki? It helps when one remembers that originally Little Busters was produced as gameplay.  The main character of this... See full review

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

Violet Evergarden

Apr 30, 2022

While viewing the thirteen episodes in the Violet Evergarden series (2018), about the middle episodes I was making this connection between Violet and Kobato Hanato of the Kobato iyashikei.  Two facets pop out, first the mission of mending hearts each girl pursued, and then the slow unraveling of each girl's background.  The sad fact is that by the end of Kobato, we understood the girl who collected confetti of mended hearts.  As far as the metallic-armed writer of letters to the worn and weary, not that much. This does explain the 2018 special, the 2019 OVA, and the 2020 movie.  Keep on... See full review

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

Little Busters!

Apr 30, 2022

I watched Little Busters because of a love for the characters played by Greg Ayes.  A friend told me that the ultimately typical character Ayes plays was not in The Pet Girl of Sakara Hall (the romantic lead?  Pul-eeze!) nor Clannad (the vermin who needed to be crushed).  But to see Ayes at his best, you have to watch Masato Inohara in action.  While a hapless buffoon, Masato is a loveable type, and catching him in a flex-down scene in the recent Kagi-Nado drives home the versatility of a seiyuu who still gets to be type-casted. The premise of Little Busters lays down a good foundation... See full review

7/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
9/10 characters
8.7/10 overall

Planetarian: Snow Globe

Apr 24, 2022

Forgetting the melancholia of the 2016 series and movie, Planetarian: Snow Globe substitutes the warmth of nostalgia.  It was the fifth anniversary of the 5-part web Planetarian series which was followed up by the resolution-movie Planetarian: Hoshi no Hito.  Better, Snow Globe commemorated the 15th anniversary of the visual novel which began it all.  It deals with the planetarium in better days.  Ten years of Hoshino Yumemi's career in just above a half-hour. Doing the task of the prequel, Snow Globe does the job of explaining details.  While it doesn't explain the choice of... See full review

9/10 story
9/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.5/10 overall

Planetarian Movie: Hoshi no Hito

Apr 24, 2022

Planetarian: Hoshi no Hito (Man of the Stars, though the dubbed version translated the phrase as 'Stargazer') is a continuation/resolution of the five-part web series.  In the final episode of Planetarian, Kuzuya promises the shattered robot Hoshino Yumemi a better life beyond the limits of Sarcophagus City and its defunct planetarium.  Hoshino declines, knowing that a life of service to humans is the ideal 'heaven' for her species.  Kuzuya takes Yumemi's memory card and moves forward, his dream now to share the splendors of the night sky to all who will hear him. Tough job, seeing that the... See full review

9/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
9/10 characters
9.5/10 overall

Planetarian

Apr 18, 2022

A profoundly sad story with an element of hope thrust deep in the most extreme despair. And one major significance that makes the 5-episode Planetarian (18-minutes a piece) a deeply moving story slapped me in the face the moment I listened to the opening theme, the background melody that haunted the whole production for me.  I checked the seven other reviews of Planetarian to see if anyone else caught it.  Nobody did.  And I pondered why ever this tune would have been selected.  But viewing the whole series in the light of this, I couldn't be mistaken, though I still wonder about its... See full review

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall

A Lull in the Sea

Apr 15, 2022

How to describe A Lull in the Sea (Nagi no Asukara)?  Brilliant fascinating animation.  Breathtaking background of places aquatic and agrarian, along with edifices that seem to be in a state of crumbling into dust.  A powerful theme with a resolution which allows for the imagination to contemplate additional developments. And then, there was the plot.  Have you ever seen something self-destruct?  Like four or five times?  It perhaps was the idea of time needed to set the right elements into play.  While an important piece in the over-all storyline, having the aquatic... See full review

7/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
8/10 characters
8.5/10 overall

Encouragement of Climb: Omoide Present

Apr 15, 2022

Efinate nailed it.  While I might fudge on claim that Encouragement of Climb: Omoide Present is the 'greatest Yama no Susume episode of all time, it outshines most of the work done on this anime project, with one more feature movie coming out this year.  A lot of pressure on that project to wind up what has been an outstanding series of ever lengthening short feature/episodes and OVA. The secret to the enjoyment is understanding what the Japanese term omoide means.  Memories.  Without this in mind, one would suspect that the twenty-five minute OVA was a recap episode.  You might... See full review

10/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.6/10 overall

Strawberry Marshmallow Special: Episode 0

Apr 14, 2022

Think of Strawberry Marshmallow Special (aka Episode 0, quite the apt title) as that pilot aired to inform fans of the manga that the anime was two weeks away (or don't think of it at all ... which is probably better).  Four minutes to introduce the five girls of the series.  Four elementary school girls and one teen-age delinquent. The first moment takes place in Chika's bedroom with Miu busting through her usual entry point, the window.  This will happen soooo many times in those twelve episodes of the series, nothing tooooo odd.  Up to this point, this would be what to expect through... See full review

4/10 story
8/10 animation
6/10 sound
8/10 characters
6.5/10 overall

+A-Channel

Apr 12, 2022

I was told that I would get a better understanding of the anime technique of omake when I watched the eleven + A-Channel specials.  Nice little two-minute projects which explained facets of the twelve episode single season celebrating the adventures of up-tight Tooru, air-headed Run, cynical Nagi, and cute albeit klutzy Yuuko.  Sweet explanations of trivial things as: Where did Tooru's purple blouse with the too-long sleeves come from (a gift from Run)? What is the background of Satou-sensei's fetish with Run's forehead?  And what causes the friction between Satou and Kitou? How would Nagi... See full review

8/10 story
8/10 animation
7/10 sound
10/10 characters
8.3/10 overall

Strawberry Marshmallow

Apr 10, 2022

Ichigo Mashimaro (Strawberry Marshmallow) had all the traits of being a very benign production, yet I could only wonder how malignant it was for me in watching these twelve ‘iyashikei’ episodes of four fifth grade girls and one rebel of a teen-aged sister.  I think it came with the first line of the theme song ... ‘don't think of us as cute,’ or words to that effect.  There were moments I felt the girls weren't aiming so much for kawaii, but if they were trying for moe  ... plane hits ground and bursts into flames ... or however that saying goes. Honestly, of the... See full review

5/10 story
8/10 animation
8/10 sound
6/10 characters
6.8/10 overall

BanG Dream! Girls Band Party! Pico: Fever

Apr 9, 2022

With Fever!, the BanG Dream! franchise has equaled the number of seasons between the regular series and the BanG Dream! Girls Band Party chibi-shorts collections of 26 mini-exercises into what nonsense those rocker girls can get.  And with Fever!, I would guess that Sanzigen had pushed the formula one too many times.  Between Pico! and Pico Ohmori!, Fever! did not measure up. As these were meant to be unconnected story lines focusing on trivial pieces about the seven girls' bands of the BD! enterprise (RAS has more scenes than Ohmori! and Morfonica is featured in a couple of episodes). ... See full review

6/10 story
9/10 animation
8/10 sound
9/10 characters
7.5/10 overall

A-Channel

Apr 4, 2022

It's hard to grade A-Channel.  Other than 'A' would not be my first choice.  Perhaps 'B' (B+ if I'm in a good mood). The storyline reminds me of Hidamari Sketch, though with a better sense of time and direction.  Plus, you get the dilemma of Touru, a petite girl with a temper that no boy should ever experience.  But Touru's energies are spent in protecting Run, her best friend  from elementary school (Run has a way of attracting boys).  But Run is one year older, has moved on and up, and by the time Touru can be in the same high school as Run, second-year Run has found new... See full review

8/10 story
8.5/10 animation
9/10 sound
9/10 characters
8.8/10 overall

Futsal Boys!!!!!

Apr 3, 2022

Ohhh, Futsal Boys! is done?  After episode twelve, it looked so much like the series could go on for another set of episodes against newer, better, more arrogant opposition.  But it seems that FB is begging for a second season.  Natural, as it seemed to be begging in several areas. About mid-season, I had this nagging feeling that FB is nothing more than a reconstituted Try Knights for arena soccer fans.  Except with better animation technique ... scarcely.  And. being reconstituted twaddle, I can offer the key complaints I gave Try Knights once I translate rugby into futbol. ... See full review

4/10 story
6/10 animation
7/10 sound
8/10 characters
6.1/10 overall

Girls Beyond the Wasteland

Apr 2, 2022

Girls Beyond the Wasteland is an effort to explain the otaku culture, those fans of anime, manga, and VG and the people who cater to the likes and interests of that mindset.  The question is, does the story of the six teens who create the genre measure up to this demanding culture. Quick answer: No. Rokuhara is a team of four girls and two guys, six unlikely members drawn into the Business Management Club of the local high school to create a bishoujo game.  These six make for a rough fit.  We can introduce them as pairs.  First, the alpha females Kuroda and Andou.  Kuroda is the... See full review

6/10 story
8/10 animation
9/10 sound
8/10 characters
7.7/10 overall

Non Non Biyori Nonstop OVA

Mar 27, 2022

Thanks to Efinate’s review of the Nonstop OVA that gave me the chance to view the one Non Non Biyori episode that I’ve been eager to see. I found.  I watched.  I sighed. And that sigh comes for two reasons. First, this 24 minute selection had all the clues that this will be Silver Link’s last offering of those country girls attending Asahigaoka Branch School.  The familiar scene at the end, when the kanji letters of Non Non Biyori fall to the ground, it is the four chibi characters, not the normal two raising up the sign that usually says, ‘See you... See full review

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

Teasing Master Takagi-san 3

Mar 26, 2022

Many an anime fan taking in Teasing-Master Takagi-san dropped the series after a while.  Complained of a constantly reoccurring plot: girl teases boy ... boy swears revenge ... boy's plans crash and burn [a lovely shade of blushing red] ... girl enjoys her handiwork.  I see the three seasons of Teasing-Master Takagi-san as an ever-expanding spiral.  You do get this idea of going about in circles while all the time you've been drifting away from that starting point.  The third season answers the question 'Drifting to ... where?' It is plain as Capt. Obvious' quips that Takagi likes... See full review

10/10 story
9/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.6/10 overall

Tropical-Rouge! Precure: Yuki no Princess to Kiseki no Yubiwa!

Mar 19, 2022

Before watching the Tropical Rouge! Precure feature movie (Yuki no Princess to Kiseki no Yubiwa [The Snow Princess and the Ring of Wishes] ... with HeartCatch Precure), I made mental notes of the Healin' Good Precure special feature (Yume no Machi de Kyun! Tto GoGo! Daihenshin!! ... with Yes! Precure Five Gogo).  If there was one complaint I would have raised with the Healin' Good movie, it was the scant use of the third generation of Precure.  Yes! Precure Five Gogo came in to even the sides in a fight with the team of duplicated Egoegos, got captured, got rescued, and then joined in the final... See full review

8/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.5/10 overall

Princess Connect! Re: Dive Season 2

Mar 19, 2022

The climax is at hand.  The true princess (Pecorine, who is really Princess Eustania) and the pseudo-ruler (Insight, who holds the realm through delusionary magic) are looking each other eye-to-eye.  Two more episodes to go and tensions are high already! The first season concentrated strongly on the four members of the Gourmet Guild (Pecorine, Yuuki, Kokkoro, and Karyl) while tossing in a few extra characters who would make some impact.  Other than a few with impressive chest size (I'm not talking about that dullard Ikachi) ... meh.  In the second season, the secondary characters... See full review

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall

Hi Score Girl II

Mar 19, 2022

Hi Score Girl 2 is a brilliant resolution of a story that still needs an ending.  I doubt that there will be a third season, seeing that there's a 'nuf said' feel to the last episode.  I am holding out for a movie to tie down any loose ends (did you happen to see any?) that the second season left dangling.  And, if there is no up-coming OVA ... Awwwwwwwww!!! Still, the main things are nailed down.  The last embers of the clueless Haruo, hopeful Hidaka, inscrutable Akira love triangle die out with the dignity such a wash of emotions deserve.  Hidaka's tears are heart-felt and... See full review

10/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.8/10 overall

The Pet Girl of Sakurasou

Mar 19, 2022

The Pet Girl of Sakurasou does not begin well.  Sakura Hall is a rundown, dilapidated dormitory which deserves to be condemned and bulldozed.  Its function as the dumping spot for the 'problem' students of the local high school has filled its rooms with the parthenophobes, pervs, streakers, and exhibitionists the normal student body keeps at arm’s length. Once the worthless fanservice introductory episodes are done, we learn that this hovel of human refuse is a magnet for the eccentrics, the talented, the visionary, and genius.  Granted, the opportunity for embarrassing scenes pops up... See full review

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

Chobits

Mar 14, 2022

When I learned that Chobits was originally a CLAMP manga, I had great hopes for the anime.  If nothing else, tightly intricate plotlines are a CLAMP specialty.  And Chobits does not fail to be convoluted maze of a mysterious android who looks all of sweetness and innocence ... and could destroy the techno-world she is a part of. To prepare us for the unraveling, we must absorb the technological prowess of the main character Hideki Motosuwa, which is not all that much.  Na-na, zip, squat, nothing.  Hideki is a good ol' farm boy come to the big city to enter college.  He fails the... See full review

10/10 story
8/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.8/10 overall

Hi Score Girl: Extra Stage

Mar 13, 2022

Hi Score Girl: Extra Stage is a three-part OVA series which creates an appropriate bridge between first and second seasons.  It resolves three important issues making for a smooth transition between the two collections of gamer boy and the gamer girls who love him, and either would kill (in game play mode) for him. First, the challenge Hidaka gives Haruo.  In the fighting game of her choice, if she wins, Haruo dates Hidaka.  If Haruo wins, Hidaka will withdraw quietly ... from what Haruo is never sure. Then, easing the restrictions which prevent Akira from seeing Haruo and enjoying herself... See full review

10/10 story
9/10 animation
9/10 sound
9/10 characters
9.3/10 overall

BanG Dream! Movie: Episode of Roselia - Part I: Yakusoku

Mar 13, 2022

Episode of Roselia - Part 1: Yakusoku (Promise) has all the aspects of an origin story.  And it begins with the picture of lead singer Yukina Minato with a beaming smile (circa when she was about a five-year old).  Needless to say, something happened to have changed her into the overly-serious, never (or perhaps hardly) smiling wannabe rocker.  And it had everything to do with her talented musician father ... who suddenly dropped music from his life.  This movie begins the process of finding out why and restoring the balance to Yukina's quest for music excellence. The slow welding of... See full review

7/10 story
9/10 animation
8/10 sound
10/10 characters
8.5/10 overall

Room Camp

Mar 6, 2022

I'm trying to comprehend Room Camp (Heyacamp), but not due to a complex story design.  The story is simplicity in itself.  But Room Camp, which came out in the year between the two Laid-Back Camp seasons (2020), seems to have taken a cue from Yama no Susume (Encouragement of Climb) which began with two seasons of shorts.  Each episode of Room Camp lasts 3 minutes, 30 seconds.  This is rather smart on C-Station's part.  The plodding pace of a usual Laid-Back Camp episode can be death for the drowsy, but such a short time span for Room Camp gets the job done without a snooze... See full review

9/10 story
9/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.5/10 overall

Hi Score Girl

Mar 5, 2022

Netflix screwed up my understanding of the development of the storyline for season one of Hi-Score Girl.  The streaming service jams season one with the 3-part OVA Extra Girl.  So, when A-P notified me that I completed season one of Hi-Score Girl after episode twelve, I had to re-rack my brains to sum up what I've seen so far.  If nothing else, the good people at JC Staff ended the first season with a shock and awe cliff-hanger.  Drop the bomb and blow away the imagination! But what that unresolved climactic moment can be ... let's put this on the back burner for now. Hi-Score Girl... See full review

10/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.7/10 overall

Special A

Feb 19, 2022

The premise of Special A seems counter-intuitive, or at least repulsive to a feminist.  We are more used to an "Annie Get Your Gun" concept, where the girl is far superior to the male who still gets around to fall for the gal.  Eventually Annie Oakley does throw a shooting match to Frank Butler to assuage the 'male ego.'  Love does strange stuff. Not so in Special A.  The Main characters Hikari and Kei are sworn rivals.  But here's the hitch.  Hikari, for all her middle class values of hard work and constant effort, can never beat the aristocrat Kei who has a... See full review

9/10 story
9/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.6/10 overall