Tag Archives: shoujo

animewatch: 2009

17 Jan

skip beatsurprisingly, despite my unpredictable schedule (and erratic viewing habits) for most of the year, i actually managed to finish more anime shows/features than ever before. it didn’t feel that way, believe me. i always seem to be on a lookout for something to whet my appetite — and despite the piles of duds that i had to suffer through, sometimes i got lucky. (note that not all of these entries were released in 2009. some of them came out a few years ago but were only made available to me recently).

rather than spew them out randomly, i will list these shows based on how much i liked (or, in certain cases, loathed) them.

Shows that will probably make my List of Favorites:

  • Ichigo Mashimaro (series & OVAs)
  • Skip Beat
  • The Girl Who Leapt through Time (film)

kannagi anime

Great finds

  • k-ON
  • Natsume Yuujinchou
  • Kannagi
  • Toshokan Sensou
  • Bamboo Blade
  • Ponyo on a Cliff by the Sea (film)
  • Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei (ssn 1 & 2)
  • Ghost Hunt
  • Paprika(film)
  • Minami-ke (seasons 1, 2 & 3)
  • Noein
  • Detective Conan films 9 to 13
  • Genshiken

girl who leapt through timeShows that were basically OK

  • Higurashi no Naku Koro
  • Moyashimon
  • Natsu no Arashi
  • Shugo Chara
  • Vampire Knight
  • Earl and Fairy
  • Special A
  • Slayers Premium
  • Himawari
  • The Mythical Detective Loki Ragnarok
  • Tales from Earthsea (film)

Shows I’d rather forget

  • Akikan
  • Tokyo Marble Chocolate
  • Hetalia Axis Powers
  • a few more that i didn’t even bother watch after the first episode

as you can see, the shows that highlighted this year for me were Skip Beat (i hope they will air season 2 this year), Ichigo Mashimaro, The Girl Who Leapt through Time (first time i lined up for an anime film), Toshokan Sensou, Paprika, Bamboo Blade and Kannagi. overall, this has been a good year, because even though it was a challenge to sift through piles of really crappy stuff, i managed to find a few winners. i hope 2010 will be just as  good or — if my luck holds — even better.

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currently watching: kamichu and hatenkuo yugi

12 Jun

 

to continue…

i’m now in ep. 7 of kamichu, and i think the series is shaping up well. first off, i like the way the writers developed the story and its characters (yurie, a klutzy but well-meaning teenage goddess to boot, and her high school friends). the sheer imagery and scope of its flowing rural scenes are a great plus. i almost feel like i’ve stepped into an extension of Miyazaki‘s Spirited Away — they exude the same aura. i have a feeling that in time this series is going to enter my list of favorites.

yuri - kamichu

kamichu scene

incidentally, Kamichu was awarded the Excellence prize in the 2005 Japan Media Arts Festival, which should give you an idea what to expect.

new dazzle

i also managed to peek at the first episode of hatenkou yugi (Dazzle), and i like what i’ve seen so far. for one thing, the major characters just seem to leap off the screen: rahzel, a spunky and adventurous magic user; alzeid, a grouchy loner bent on revenge, and baroqueheat, a skirt-chasing adventurer. hatenkou yugi is a series that combines elements of adventure, comedy, drama, supernatural, etc.

hatenko yugi

coming up next: the film Paprika.

more anime updates

25 Mar

whew, it’s been a while since my last post (i’m posting twice today to make up for it). actually, there have been times that i’ve been tempted to insert some fillers but i always ended up deleting my drafts they sounded either forced, nonsensical, or rambling.

between my erratic work schedule and my still-even-more-unpredictable freelance activities, i’d been able to watch a few anime features every now and then. although most of them won’t even crack my top 50 favorites, a few had been entertaining enough to keep me holding on until the last episode.

hanayome2.jpg

at the moment i’m steadfastly plowing through Saitoh High School Haunted Junction (which, for some reason, reminds me of The Magic Users Club) and Seto no Hanayome. of the two, i’m more inclined to finish Seto no Hanayome first because a series that mixes up mermaids, overanxious and highly excitable parents, gangsters, hapless kids, and brain-addled sidekicks into one rollicking mishap after another always gets my attention.

 

hanayome1.jpg 

bowing to a friend’s recommendation, i finally watched Romeo x Juliet, which is basically an extended retelling of that classic shakespearean fare. this time, the story is set on a much grander scale, with fantastical elements (winged horses, floating continent, giant trees, etc.) thrown in for good measure. the timeline roughly reflects the Medieval period (buildings, mode of dressing, system of government) but with a lot improvements tucked here and there.

Romeo x Juliet remains a story between the Capulets and the Montagues, along with a few characters whose roles have either been expanded, shortened, excised, or changed completely.

romeo-juliet.jpg

in this 24-episode version, many characters are fleshed out and provided with sufficient backstory to make them more interesting. even shakespeare gets his due (he appears as willy, a playwright who is secretly sympathetic to the Capulets) and a few characters share the names of several important personages from the Bard’s plays (Cordelia, Ophelia, etc.).

i found the music a bit too cloying (i guess i should have expected that), but the flowing artwork more than makes up for it. there are also a few twists here and there that work well to keep Romeo x Juliet from being predictable.

bottomline, it’s a worthwhile series to watch.

a few updates

25 Mar

in the last month i was able to finish several oldie features: Saiyuki Reload, Blue Seed, and Jubei-chan: The Ninja Girl. Sadly though, i couldn’t find the will nor the inclination to finish a few titles that i’ve started (Outlaw Star, Rune Soldiers, Gokudo, Chobits, King of Bandits Jing) because i either found them too predictable, uninteresting, or strangely flat.

s-reload.jpg

Saiyuki Reload is a great follow-up to Gensomaden Saiyuki, particularly the early episodes which are refreshingly light and funny. the contrast between the short-tempered and sarcastic Genjo Sanzo and his 3 more easygoing companions (the reliable and well-grounded Cho Hakkai, the skirt-chasing Sha Gojyo, and the pesky Son Goku) makes for a rich source of hilarity. The story continues in Saiyuki Gunlock, which i will dwell more on later.

blue-seed.jpg

Blue Seed, one of Megumi Hayashibara‘s early projects, is your typical magical girl series that is occasionally peppered with humor and overwrought angst (for its female protagonist). after a few episodes the routine begins to pall but i managed to get through until the end. side note: i liked the closing song (sung by ms. hayashibara herself).

jubei-chan.jpg

i found Jubei-chan: The Ninja Girl (another oldie) funny and engaging, with its array of fascinating support characters. the fight scenes are refreshingly tight and crisp: the combatants waste little time in posturing and lengthy speeches, and let their swords do the talking (which is even more eloquent, in my opinion).