Enen no Shouboutai Episode 10: Recap and Review

In episode 10 of Fire Force, Shinra, Tamaki and Obi are sitting in the car arriving to the meeting at  Amaterasu.
Shinra excited to see Amaterasu

Season 1, Episode 10: ‘The Promise’

The tenth episode of Enen no Shouboutai (Fire Force), the Promise, introduces the Tokyo Imperial Emperor, Raffles III. He calls an emergency conference of all the Captains to discuss the threat of the Evangelist. It’s rare that all the Captains meet. They arrive at the thermal energy plant, Amaterasu. The plant produces all the energy for Tokyo. The conference begins. Along with Leonard Burns (1st), Princess Hibana (5th) and Akitaru Obi (8th), we are introduced to Gustav Honda (2nd), Dr. Giovanni (3rd), Soichiro Hague (4th), Kayoko Huang (6th) and finally Benimaru Shinmon (7th).

Obi notes that the 7th rarely shows up. Shinra states that Shinmon is considered to be the “mightiest Fire Soldier.” The Emperor begins by telling that the Captains that the Evangelist must be stopped as they are traitors. Shinmon is disrespectful when the Emperor suggests that they’re protected by the “Great Sol.” He states that his name is Shinmon Benimaru, which apparently suggests that he’s a “proto-nationalists.” It would have been helpful for Fire Force to explain what a “proto-nationalists” is, why his name is proto-nationalists” and why that’s a problem. Clearly it means that he doesn’t follow orders and he leaves.

In episode 10 of Fire Force, Sho Kusakabe sits on a throne while leaning on a sword.
Sho Kusakabe

Joker arrives and plans to see Shinra again. It is revealed to the Captains that Shinra has the Adolla Burst. This is the same as the flame of Amaterasu. Captain Obi and Company 8, take full responsibility for protecting Shinra. While watching Amaterasu, Joker interrupts him. Joker offers him a “reward,” and tells him that his brother, named Sho Kusakabe is now a Commander of the Knights of the Ashen Flame. Tanaka tells Shinra that he wants him to trust them. At the end of the episode he finally tells them about what Joker told him about his brother. We get a brief look at the White Clad cult and Sho, who has the same smile as Shinra.

This episode largely serves as a recap episode, but there’s enough new information that it doesn’t matter. We are starting to get some clarity on the hierarchy of the Fire Force universe, but I still don’t understand which of the Companies can be trusted. The impression this episode in parts is that Company 3, lead by Dr. Giovanni is a possible threat to Shinra. Company 7, lead by Benimaru Shinmon seem like the most likely to fight against the Church and Government. However, what remains unclear is whether these organizations are evil at all. Joker’s loyalties are interesting. He clearly is obsessed with Shinra, but what he gains from instigating a conflict between brothers is uncertain.


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30 Day DC Challenge – Day 28: Favorite DC Graphic Novel

Watchmen Graphic Novel cover issue #1, At Midnight, All The Agents by Dave Gibbons. The purpose of the image is to show the smiley face motif

Watchmen

The Watchmen was the first graphic novel/comic book series I read that didn’t have mainstream superheroes like Superman or Batman. Created by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons, the 12 issue series was published in 1986 and 1987. It has since spawned a movie adaptation, a prequel mini series titled Before Watchmen and a HBO tv series. Moore originally wanted to write a story that ” featured an unused line of superheroes that he could revamp.” His hope was to “shock and surprise” readers by using characters that were familiar to them. However, DC while receptive to his pitch, though using original characters was a better idea. He said that ” if I wrote the substitute characters well enough, . . . then it might work.” Dave Gibbons asked to be involved in the project and sent him the outline.

Watchmen is set in an alternate universe that is similar to the world during the 1980’s. The main difference is the existence of superheroes. These heroes alter real life events like the Vietnam War and Richard Nixon presidency. None of the superheroes have any super powers except, Doctor Manhattan. Superheroes become unpopular among the public resulting in the passage of the Keene Act. As a result many heroes retire, except the Comedian and Dr. Manhattan, while Rorschach continues to work illegally. The story is complex, as the antihero Rorschach investigates the death of the Comedian and uncovers a conspiracy that threatens to destroy the world.

The Watchmen series features structures that deviate from the comics of the time using a “nine panel grid system,” the cover of each issue was the first panel of the story and each cover “were designed as close-ups that focused on a single detail with no human elements present.” It also had a story within a story, Tales of the Black Freighter. Moore used several different images and symbols like, a stained smiley face (considered the symbol of the series), doomsday clock and craters, all cleverly woven into the series. Watchmen tackled adult themes, with a sophisticated plot. Watchmen is one of the best works I’ve ever read. It has been described as “one of the greatest literary works ever created.” Watchmen was honored in Time Magazine’s best 100 English Language novels from 1923 to present, it was the only comic present. I couldn’t recommend this graphic novel enough, if you get a chance read it.

One Piece Chapter 955: Recap & Review

Enma

The One Piece series has always featured swords. However, the series rarely elaborate on swords as a form of fighting. Having largely focused on devil fruits and haki, swords have been left out. Zoro has been the most important swordsmen in the series. Through him we have the most exposure to swords and how they are used in combat. One Piece has classified swords by their qualities. The three classifications are, Meito, Kokuto and Yoto. The Meito (Famed Blade) class is a sword that has gained such fame that it can be recognized by sight. Kokuto (Black Blade) are swords that are blacked colored. Finally, the Yoto (Mystic Blade) class, carries a curse that causes misfortune to its wielder.

The blades classed Meito are also ranked by “grade.” The grades are Grade swords, Skillful grade, Great grade and Supreme grade. There are an undetermined number of Grade Swords as they’re the lowest grade. There are 50 Skillful Grade Swords, 21 Great Grade Swords and 12 Supreme Grade Swords. In chapter 955, titled Enma, Zoro is given his second of two Great Grade Swords. Enma is a Meito that use to belong to Kozuki Oden, it’s also the only weapon said to have harmed Kiado. A masterpiece from the legendary swordsmith Shimotsuki Kozaburo, it is describe as being able to “cut through to the bottom of hell.” Tenguyama Hitetsu believes that if Zoro can make Enma a black blade, it’s rank would increase.

Enma is difficult to wield. Enma is able to draw out the wielders Busoshoku Haki on it’s own, it can result in the force of a strike being greater than intended. It was stated that if Zoro was a lesser swordsmen he would have been turned into a “dry husk.” Zoro is able to force his haki back from the blade. The Wano Country Arc seems to be a turning point in regards to focusing more on swords and the power. The chapter largely focuses on the preparations for the upcoming battle. A handful of days are left until the raid, Robin reveals that the Beast Pirates have 20,000 men and Orochi has 10,000. The Alliance only has 4,000. Clearly, they’re at a numerical disadvantage. However, I think that they have better “quality” of warriors. With Luffy mastering the new Haki and Zoro able to master Enma It think that they will be fine.

My Hero Academia Chapter 243 Recap & Review

Onward! To Endeavor’s Office

It’s New Year’s , the students are finally able to visit their parents, but they need to be accompanied by pro heroes. Hawks continues his undercover mission with the Liberation Front. Skeptic criticizes Slidin’ Go for his claim that he’s Hawks “superior.” He says that he doesn’t have “the influence to spread the doctrine,” and get information from “key figures in the hero system.” He placed twenty micro devices on the wings of Hawks, to collect “location data, communication records, real time conversations and visuals.” Slidin’ Go is also a hero like Hawks, but has far fewer connections. We see that Hawks has been in contact with the heroes and warned them that he will be monitored.

Midoriya, Bakugo and Shoto arrive at Endeavor’s office. He greets them with a smile, but quickly warns them that they shouldn’t expect kindness from him. He makes it clear that he only really cares about training Shoto, Bakugo calls him a “hard ass.” Endeavor is surprised that Shoto is friends with Bakugo. All Might is supportive of them interning at Endeavor’s. He suggests that Bakugo is very similar to Endeavor and it might benefit him the most. Meanwhile, Endeavor tells Midoriya that he’s only interested in his son, but they could learn from him by watching. He springs into action as the trio follow.

A villain appears and begins to attack the civilians. Hawks is also present and prepares to fight. I think that Endeavor will warm up to Bakugo and Midoriya. He could solidify his legacy if he was the trainer of what I think will be the top three heroes at some point. I wonder if he starts to show some more favoritism toward Midoriya and Bakugo, if Shoto would have an issue. I think that Hawks will get caught at some point, however, I think it will only happen after he becomes important to the young heroes like Midoriya. This next chapter will probably be the start of their relationship. His death will need to have some impact on the main characters right now they don’t really know him.

30 Day DC Challenge – Day 27: Favorite DC Comic Book series

Kingdom Come

Kingdom Come was written by Alex Ross and Mark Waid. The series is part of DC comics Elsewords imprint. Featuring the photorealistics art style of Alex Ross, the series focused on a complex story of a future DC universe. Ross created new costumes for most of the characters, he also added several new characters. Set in the year 2020, the Justice League we come to know have mostly retired. They are succeeded by a new more radical generation, that lacks the concern of civilians. They often clash with each other. After a nuclear explosion in Kansas, resulting from Parasite tearing apart Captain Atom, Superman finally comes out of retirement.

Other heroes continued to fight crime, The Flash still patrols around Keystone City, Hawkman protects the forests of the Pacific Northwest, Green Lantern watches Earth from an emerald city in space, Batman (now elderly) uses robots to patrol Gotham. However, other heroes like Aquaman, the Amazons and the Legion of Super-Heroes abandon the world. The four issues results in Superman creating a “reformation center” for superheros called the “Gulag.” It becomes a re-education camp, trying to teach the prisoners how to use their powers.

Lex Luthor and Batman join forces (it doesn’t last long) to create the Mankind Liberation Front. Superman and Captain Marvel fight, a bomb is dropped on the combatants. Captain Marvel sacrifices himself, but the bomb still manages to kill many of the super-humans. Superman and Wonder Woman become pregnant and Batman becomes the godfather. The series Kingdom Come is an epic story with amazing art. It’s one of the few series that gives Superman complexity. I highly recommend this series.

Samurai 8: The Tale of Hachimaru, Chapter 18: Recap and Review

Use As Planned

The samurai Kotsuga and Ryu face off against Daruma. Ryu’s forgetfulness, results in him misunderstanding Kotsuga’s command of kill “everyone but the girl.” The ronin bandits are well weird. Sometimes stupidity can work as a form of comedy, but I’m not sure about Ryu and Kotsuga. Although, I did feel that there some potential for comedy here. Regardless, Ryu and Daruma battle. Ryu stop’s before asking Daruma if he’s a boy cat or a girl. Daruma responds neither, he’s a man. As they clash, Ryu takes out a second soul. He’s able to use his bone hilt from both sides. With the entire ship being Daruma’s key holder, he has control over it. He manages to capture Kotsuga. However, Ryu cuts him free and escapes into space.

Daruma follows, while being told that Hachimaru spent 17 million yen. Ryu lands a blow on Daruma, but fails to do much damaged. He knocks them away with a burst of power. He asks Hachimaru why he spent all that money on “gold thread embroidered fabric.” It was a gift for Ann, to replace her sash she tore to help his father. Now bankrupted, Ryu and Kotsuga suggest that they participate in a in a fighting festival. The winner gets a billion yen. The organizer is apparently a samurai that has one of the keys they need. Hachimaru wants to fight in the festival too. Most shonen manga series have a tournament arc, although they rarely occur this early.

The fact that this samurai can split a planet in half is presented as impressive, but at this point in the series which samurai can’t split a planet in half. The chapter is a little too convenient. Sure instead of being robbed, it’s Hachimaru’s irresponsible spending that bankrupts them. However, Kotsuga and Ryu knowing of a tournament that’s happening at the very moment, with a cash prize to recover the loses and a samurai with a key is a bit too much. I feel it should have been more subtle. Hopefully, we will get to see more fighting styles and get more in-depth information on the series power system. Finally, Ryu and Kotsuga seem to dynamic to disappear now, I think they will join the team.

Dr. Stone Episode 10: Recap and Review

A Flimsy Alliance

Kohaku explains to Suika, that Tsukasa is the guy that “killed” Senku. They discuss whether Gen is a good person or not. Senku says that even if he’s not a good person it doesn’t matter. They need him to tell Tsukasa that “Senku is definitely dead.” If he doesn’t they can’t win. Chrome tells Gen that the “Kingdom of Science is more fun.” Gen remembers being freed by Tsukasa. Having meet before, Tsukasa informs Gen that he’s collecting people to be revived. Gen is attacked by an unseen assailant. He manages to survive by using a fake bag of blood. However, he does sustain some injures. Suika goes to investigate. She’s learns that Magma is responsible.

His next target is Kohaku. He assumes her “power” is due to sorcery and now with Gen “dead” she will just be another girl. Kohaku realizes that Magma probably mistook Gen for Senku. Kohaku defeated Magma in a martial arts tournament. The winner of the tourney would become village elder and marry Rui. He isn’t so happy to do so however. Rui being sick isn’t a desirable wife to him, as he doesn’t want to take care of her. He hopes that she dies and suggests that he would “make it look like she drowned herself out of despair.” Overhearing this Kohaku attacks him, winning the tournament. The tournament will be held in a month. Kohaku suggests that if a man from the Kingdom of Science were to win the tournament they could save her.

She suggest that Kinro and Ginro enter the tournament and begins to train them. Chrome decides that he will focus on finding the cure for Ruri. With Gen in terrible shape, he won’t get back to Tsukasa in time. This means that Tsukasa is likely going to come an kill him. The next morning, Gen flees to go back to Tsukasa. At a cave, Gen finally reaches him. Tsukasa has revived several dangerous looking men and women. Kohaku tries to stop him but Senku tells her that he made up his mind when he saw the electricity and was a promised of cola. I don’t think Tsukasa will be fooled by Gen. Overall, Gen deciding to join the Kingdom of Science was better for him. Yes, he was attacked, but he get better food (Ramen), cola and electricity.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 23: Recap & Review

Hashira Meeting

Tanjiro begins using his breathing technique to free himself. Giyu stops Obanai from interfering. Nezuko remembers her childhood. She begins to control her instincts, she looks away from Sanemi. Surprising to Sanemi, The Master takes it as evidence that she can be trusted. The Master then tells Tanjiro and Nezuko that they must go out in the world and defeat demons. Tanjiro states that he will “defeat Kibutsuji.” The Master kindly points that Tanjiro is nowhere near as powerful as he needs to be. He tells Tanjiro that he should focus on the Twelve Moon. Tanjiro and Nezuko are taken to Kocho mansion, Butterfly Manor.

They’re escorted into the infirmary. We see Zenitsu whining (as usual) about the pour tasting medicine. He needs the medication to regrow his shortened limbs due to being deformed by the venom. Zenitsu and Tanjiro happily greet each other. Inosuke lays silently in the bed besides Zenitsu. His voice has been damaged by the attack Father inflicted on him. Hoarse, he’s depressed by his lack of strength. Clearly this is going to be an opportunity for Tanjiro, Zenitsu, Inosuke and maybe Nezuko to gt some training. Meanwhile, the Hashira have their meeting. Demons are more active now and they need to increase their recruitment number.

Natagumo states that the quality of the non-Hashira’s members is terrible. However, it’s difficult for the Corps to recruit because humanity is largely ignorant of demons. Only those that have lost love ones to demons and are descendants of former demon slayers. The Corps have a good grasp on their problems. However, the ignorance of humanity can be solved by educating them. If the Corps taught them how to protect themselves from demon (wisteria) it would be harder for demons to kill them and get stronger. Right now the Corps are hidden from the public.

You could imagine that the Corps could become a military force, though that has other problems. Another thing that seems to cause them problems is the informal nature of how they choose demon slayers. Tanjiro was trained by a former Hashira, but his survival wasn’t really certain. The Corps seem unwilling to “hand hold,” at least not until after the final selection. Tanjiro is left to his own devices after he survives, given orders to fight but not how to fight. Basically, the leave them to fend for themselves which isn’t working at all. If they had a mentor continue to train with rookie demon slayers they would be better prepared than they tend to be.

30 Day DC Challenge – Day 26: Which Character’s Powers would you want?

Doctor Fate

I always loved magic. I don’t know why. I always thought it was cool. Maybe it’s the sense that with magic has no real limits or it doesn’t always have limits. In the world of superheroes, magicians aren’t prominent. They’re powers often seem just like the other heroes, but the source is different. Also, while many heroes have to learn their powers, there’s an intellectual aspect to learn magic that I respect. Dr. Fate is considered to be the DC counterpoint to Marvel’s Dr. Strange. Like Strange, Dr. Fate is a “magician.” His powers are considered “occultism” that is described as the ability to use magic. Much like Dr. Strange, Dr. Fate (Dr. Kent Nelson) was a physician.

Dr. Fate was a child of archaeologist Sven Nelson. While on an expedition with his father, Kent opens the tomb of Nabu the Wise. He revives Nabu from his suspended animation but accidentally kills his father by unintentionally releasing poisonous gas. Nabu, teaches him sorcery over the next twenty years. Nabu gives him a mystical helmet, amulet and cloak. The Helmet of Fate transforms it wearer into a “master of magic.” He is granted several powers like “spellcasting, flight, superhuman strength, invulnerability, telekinesis, telepathy, pyrokinesis, and the ability to manipulate lightning. His powers have been described as ” the true conversion of energy into matter, and matter into energy.” Regardless, he’s one of the most powerful DC heroes.

30 Day DC Challenge – Day 25: DC character has the worst powers

Wonder Twins

Growing up I loved watching the Superfriends, a more kid friendly Justice League. One duo that were members was the Wonder Twins. The twins were mutants born on planet Exxor. They were each gifted with a specific form of shape-shifting. Their powers were activated when they touch rings. This is part of why their powers are the worst, however, Zan gets the worst of it. Jayna can turn into any animal, whereas, Zan can turn into any form of water (solid, liquid and gas). This ability is limiting in that he can’t really do much. He often turns into a puddle of water and needs to be carried in a bucket.

They were often played for laughs at least during commercial breaks or after credits on the Cartoon Network. The need to for them to announce the form they intended to transformed into stating, “Shape of . . .”, “Form of . . .” seemed impractical, but also was part of the humor. In one episode Jayna turns into a seagull, while Zan turns into a “Ice Gondola (Chair of Ice).” I’m sure that they have gotta retconned in some way or have been given power upgrades, but I choose to remember them as they were on one of my favorite childhood television shows the Superfriends, useless.


30 Day DC Challenge – Day 24: Worst Superhero Costume

Superhero costumes are obviously difficult to come up with. You could be as simple as possible, but that feel like laziness. Some costumes are impractical. Many heroes (mostly women) have costumes that seem to work against them more than for them. Hawkman’s chest harness does little to protect said chest. Sometimes the costume has a feature that does nothing for the hero. Power Girl’s infamous “chest window” is on of the most popular example of this. Most of the worst costumes seem to have been created in the 1970’s. I don’t think that is an accident. The general fashion sense of those times weren’t too subtle. There are so many bad costumes, but this one is the worst.


Batman’s Zebras Suit

Batman has one of the best superhero costume’s in comics. However, he once wore on of the worst ones. In Detective Comics #275, Batman wears a Zebra Batman costume. In the issue, Batman and Robin battle Zebra Man. A small time criminal and a scientists, Zebra Man discovered that “all energy has lines of force.” After charging his body with this energy these “lines of force,” go through his costume. Batman becomes exposed to this energy, he becomes a Zebra-Batman. In this form Batman begins to repel everything with great force. Batman couldn’t get near anyone or eat without repelling it. While the Zebra suit wasn’t an intentionally made costume, it still wasn’t a good look.

Vinland Saga Episode 9: Recap & Review

The Battle of London Bridge

In October 1013, a fleet of Danish and Viking ships arrive in England. They are prepared to take London Bridge. Askeladd’s army is hired by Denmark, hoping to get rich with an easy victory. However, things get more complicated, with the deflection of Thorkell the Tall. Askeladd sends Thorfinn after Thorkell. A battle obsessed “madman,” Thorkell fights against his own countrymen for the challenge. When Floki asks the English for their surrender, Thorkell throws a massive boulder at them. He misses, but shows that he’s a major obstacle. The highlight of this episode is the fight between, Thorfinn and Thorkell. Armed with two daggers, Thorfinn takes on the unarmed Thorkell.

This fight is spectacular. They use of dramatic camera angles is really effective. Thorfinn use of superhuman acrobatics when dodging Thorkell’s massive blows is a sight. Thorkell duels Thorfinn one on one. Thorfinn quickly notices that despite being unarmed, Thorkell could kill him with “one hit.” He notices the weak points of Thorkell, attacking low, he manages to stab Thorkell in the hand. However, this allows Thorkell to grab Thorfinn. Slamming Thorfinn into the ground repeatedly, Askeladd and the fleet retreat. Thorfinn escapes after cutting off two of Thorkell’s fingers. He then jumps into the sea after informing Thorkell that he’s named Thorfinn, son of Thors.

Thorkell is excited to have battled such a warrior. He hopes for another battle on day. Realizing that they can’t spend so much time in one city, King Sweyn plans to move West. He will leave 4000 troops to overtake England, handing over command to the young Prince Canute. Ragnar continues to challenge the Kings wisdom in this regard. Every time he does this I expect the King to have him killed. It seems to be foolish to constantly tell the King that he’s wrong without any consequences. Although maybe the King simply responds well to criticism. Meanwhile, Thorfinn returns to land, with a dislocated shoulder, a sprained right ankle and several broken ribs. As they march on to Wessex, Thorfinn struggles to understand why anyone would love battle so much.


Reviews of the Other Episodes

House of X #4: Recap and Review

The last issue of House of X left us on a cliffhanger. I assumed that all the X-Men would be fine, with either Jean Grey protecting them or Nightcrawler teleporting them to safety. Boy was I wrong. Archangel and Husk are killed. Nightcrawler sustained some internal injuries and Wolverine arm is blown to the bone (although we know he’s fine.) Cyclops and Wolverine agree that the only course is to continue the mission. Nightcrawler transports Cyclops, Mystique and Wolverine to Mother Molds control collars. Wolverine and Nightcrawler successfully destroy two of the collars. The ship with Monet and Jean on it is breached by Orchis forces.

Monet puts Jean in an escape pod and sends her away. She then transforms into her Penance form and fights off the Orchis forces. Cyclops manages to find and release the third collar. Mystique having gotten lost, is intercepted by Dr. Gregor, who opens a hatch sending Mystique into space. In an act of desperation, Dr. Gregor activates Mother Mold. With Mystique dead, there remains one collar. Out of reach for Cyclops, Wolverine and Nightcrawler volunteer to destroy the final collar in space. Nightcrawler teleports them to the collar, instantly dying from the Sun’s heat. Wolverine manages to survive due to his healing factor, he successfully destroy’s the final collar with his claws.

Both Wolverine and Mother Mold fall into the Sun, as Mother Mold rants regarding the fact that “humans and mutants are lacking.” Mother Mold promises to destroy both humans and mutants, before being destroyed itself. With the mission complete, Cyclops tries to find a way to space. Dr. Gregor stops and kills Cyclops with a shotgun. The remaining Sentinels fail to reach the station in time but are able to intercept Jean in the pod, appearing to kill her. After witnessing his X-Men dying at the hands off humans, Xavier crying says “no more.” I was originally excited to see many of my favorite X-Men going on this mission. I didn’t expect that I would regret that. Don’t get me wrong, the sacrifice of the X-Men was impactful and I think necessary. I just glad Storm wasn’t with them. This sets up a interesting problem.

If most of the most popular X-Men are killed in House of X, how are they going to resurrect them later. I assume that Moira will prevent this in another life, but I’m not certain. I feel like Jean’s death was to easy. Mystique seemed to be acting strangely. Maybe it’s my bias because I’m use to her being up to something, but I feel like she must have done something. Seeing the X-Men get slaughtered one by one, despite succeeding in their mission was incredible emotional. Nightcrawler’s and Wolverine’s sacrifice was both epic and touching. I like Hickman’s version of Cyclops, we didn’t get to see much but I didn’t hate him at all. Finally, Xavier seemed to be more like himself finally showing emotion. I don’t know were House of X goes from here, but I can’t wait.

30 Day DC Challenge – Day 23: Favorite Superhero Sidekick

Roy Harper (Speedy)

I gotta be honest I don’t really care about sidekicks. They’re generally just younger carbon copies of the main heroes and I feel that they’re often quite useless. Personally, I only know the many Robins and Speedy. He appears in one of my favorite episodes of Justice League Unlimited, Patriot Act. In that episode, Speedy along with Green Arrow, Stargirl, S.T.R.I.P.E., Shining Knight, Crimson Avenger, Vigilante, fight against General Wade Eiling who uses the “super soldier” and attacks the Justice League. He’s one of DC’s oldest characters, having been created in the 1940’s. The sidekick of Green Arrow, he’s an archer, with exceptional marksmanship. Like most of the most well known sidekicks he joins the Teen Titans.

Roy is also well known for his drug addiction. The storyline was considered to be an important moment in comic book history as it represented more mature themes in comics. Like Green Arrow he has no powers, he can use a variety of objects in combat, and is a great detective. Roy has had many romantic relationships in DC, he’s been involved with Donna Troy, Cheshire, Grace Choi, the Huntress, Hawkgirl and Starfire. Speedy is one of the few sidekicks that manage to get from under the shadow of their adopted superhero fathers, showing that he’s a more complex individual.

Enen no Shouboutai Episode 9: Recap and Review

Season 1, Episode 9: The Spreading Malice

In episode 9, Shinra faces off with Lieutenant Rekka. They engage in a battle, resulting in Shinra taking Rekka down with a devastating attack. Using his movement he’s able to take advantage and defeat Rekka. However, Shinra almost exhausts the oxygen in his body. During the battle, Rekka notices that a Infernal insect is reacting to Shinra’s flame. He states that Shinra must be the “third person” that the Evangelist was searching for. He claims that Shinra possesses the “undefiled flame, the Adolla Burst.” Rekka explains that the Evangelists hope to make Earth into a “second Sun.”

Rekka reveals that he will make the children look like “they died in a fire and teach them the teachings of the Evangelists.” Shinra flashes back to his childhood, realizing that the Evangelist may have taken his brother. Rekka begins to over use his flame, preparing to die in the process. Karim uses his abilities to seal Rekka in ice. Suddenly, Rekka is shot through the chest, killing him instantly. Two white cloaked assassins succeed in their mission to silence Rekka. They then turn their sights on the others. Attacking Karim, Li intervenes losing his arm in the process.

Karim tells Shinra to create a “smokescreen,” and uses Tamaki to create a distraction. The two assassins retreat, unwilling to risk their lives further. Karim offers to join forces with Company 8 to expose the Evangelists. Tamaki is suspended by Company 1 and joins Company 8. The conspiracy is getting more interesting. The Evangelists and his followers are clearly an extreme religious organization. It also seems clear that the Evangelist took Shinra’s brother. I hope that the series teases out the investigation into the Evangelist because so far it seems that their rushing.


30 Day DC Challenge – Day 22: Favorite Superhero Hideout

Batcave

This one was obvious. I think that the Batcave is the coolest hideout in all of comic books. Built under his mansion, the Batcave is a series of subterranean caves. It was a way for slaves to travel when escaping during the civil war era. It’s home to American Brown Bats, which are feed by Alfred. Bruce uses the caves as a sanctum, that he also uses to fight war on crime. Batman is able to monitor Gotham and the world. It’s most important equipment is the supercomputer that is on par with national security agencies. It connects to major information networks, stores massive amounts of data, and can connect to satellites. The “Bat-computer” is considered to be one of the most supercomputer systems.

Batman keeps his collection of ancient armor worn by Knights, nomads and Samurai in the Batcave. It also has facilities such as “crime lab, various specialized laboratories, mechanized workshops, personal gymnasium, a vast library, parking, docking and hangar space for his various vehicles as well as separate exits for the various types, trophies of past cases, a large bat colony, and a Justice League teleporter.” The Batcave has a “subway rocket” that allows him to travel via the Gotham Rail System, allowing him to get to Gotham City quickly. The cave is often powered by a nuclear reactor or a hydro-electric generator. The Batcave is safeguarded against earthquakes and a nuclear catastrophe. It’s rumored that there’s a “Lazarus Pit” in the Batcave but that claim hasn’t been proven.

Finally, the Batcave is home of memorabilia from villains. It features a full-sized T-Rex, a large U.S. penny and a Joker playing card. Batman has kept “Two-Face’s original coin, Deathstroke’s sword, the shroud of the Mad Monk, a collection of the Penguin’s deadly umbrellas, a Joker laughing fish, one of Harley Quinn’s popguns, a Scarface dummy, Bane’s mask and Venom tank, Mad Hatter’s top hat, the Red Hood’s domed helmet and original costume, Maxie Zeus’s lightning weapon, and an over-sized collection of bowling ten-pins.”

Dr. Stone Episode 8 & 9, Recap and Review

The weird Suika

Stone Road

The villagers learn that there’s an outsider in the village. They assume that he’s a criminal that was kicked out of the village. Senku and the others prepare to save Ruri from her disease. He plans for the Kingdom of Science to create an antibiotic. Because they can’t tell what her disease is, antibiotics is the best chance to save her. He goes on to explain the two routes to making antibiotics, the biological route and the stone route. The stone route seems to be the more effective one, so they take it. Senku, Kohaku and Chrome begin searching for the elements they need to create the antibiotics.

Ramen

While collecting elements in the river, they meet Suika. She’s a weird girl with a watermelon rind on her head. She offers to help and Senku’s accepts. Once they collect the ingredients for iron the run into a problem they need to reach 1,500 degrees to make iron. By burning wood they can only reach 700 degrees. As much as they try they don’t have the manpower needed to create iron. Suika goes to find what the villagers would need to join them. Senku concludes that food would be the best way to get some of the villagers on board. Using foxtail millet, he creates ramen. Senku plans to “colonize” the village with ramen.


The “mentalist” Asagiri Gen

Let There Be the Light of Science

The Ramen is a hit with the villagers. While feeding the villages, Senku notices a man with half black and half white hair. Kohaku, Kinro and Ginro spring into action. According to Senku the man is Asagiri Gen a “magician who used to write trashy psychology books.” Gen calls himself a “mentalist.” Despite Gen claim that he’s afraid, Kohaku isn’t buying it. Asagiri Gen admits that he’s working for Tsukasa. Gen was sent to confirm that Senku is in fact dead. They acquired iron, Gen claims that whether Senku dies or Tsukasa does is irrelevant. He wins regardless. He dreams of having his own harem. Kohaku doesn’t trust him and thinks that it would be better if he was imprisoned or dead. Senku knows that if he doesn’t return to Tsukasa, then Tsukasa would show up himself.

Let there be light

Senku tells Gen that he’s planning on making a generator. Using the lightning and some iron sand, copper and other items, Senku creates a tower. Using the golden spear of Kinro, they finally get lighting to strike creating a magnet. Senku and the others create a “dual-wield hand-crank generator.” They need two people that are able to work together and have a lot of energy. They turn to Ginro and Kinro. Gen manipulates them into helping. With the electricity they created an “Edison light bulb of Japanese bamboo.” Obviously, Asagiri can’t bet trusted. He may not have any allegiance to Tsukasa but he won’t have any toward Senku.

It think that he’ll try to steal the light bulb that Senku makes. Also with the tension brewing with the Chief and some of the villagers the Kingdom of Science may be in danger. Finally, it seems that Tsukasa has accepted Taiju and Yuzuriha into his empire or at least that’s what Gen says. Tsukasa is no fool and the fact that he sent Gen to confirm the death of Senku suggests that he’s skeptical. I’m enjoying the Senku and the villagers, but I wonder what Tsukasa is up to.

30 Day DC Challenge – Day 21: Favorite DC City

Metropolis

I’m a New Yorker so my natural affinity is for Metropolis, also the crime rate in Gotham seems a little too high. One of the largest cities in DC, Metropolis is the home of Superman. First appearing in Action Comics #16 on Sept. 1939, Metropolis is a massive city in the Northeastern part of the US. It’s close to Gotham City and is considered to be prosperous. Joe Shuster modeled the skyline after Toronto, but Metropolis looks and feels like NYC. In the comics Metropolis is said to have a population of 11 million.

It’s origins date back to 1542, when navigator Vincenzo Gnanatti discovered the region. Metropolis has six boroughs, eight neighborhoods, four waterways, four parks and of course is home to the Daily Planet. It’s home to heroes, Superman, Black Lightning, Booster Gold, Supergirl and Superboy. It’s also home to villains, Bizarro, Brainiac, Lex Luthor, Doomsday and Toyman. Nicknamed “The Big Apricot,” like New York City’s nickname “The Big Apple.” Unlike Gotham, that’s built on manufacturing and shipping industries, Metropolis is build on it’s tech industry.

Cop Craft Episode 8 & 9: Recap and Review

Smells Like Toon Spirits

I gotta say I was disappointed that this episode didn’t continue the previous one. Episode 8 basically acts like the previous events didn’t happen. Tilarna and Kei conduct a sting at an airport. Impatient, Tilarna uses her weapon to cause the plane to crash into the sea. The suspect escapes, leaving behind his cargo. Tilarna is accidentally shot by a small bow and switches bodies with the cat, Kuroi. The next morning Kei of course doesn’t realize the switch. Even worst the bow fell into the trash can, which Kei takes with him when he leaves for work in the morning.

Tilarna manages to text Cecil for help. Kei receives a call from the CBP informing him that one of the 28 Semanian items is missing. The detective Hellmandes threatens to have Kei arrested for “embezzlement,” if he doesn’t return the bow. Cecil arrives to help Tilarna through text messaging they communicate. However, Kuroi in Tilarna’s body knocks Cecil out. Meanwhile, Kei goes to find O’Neill. He finds the remains of a wild party, but O’Neill is trapped under an overweight prostitute. When Cecil awakens the garbage truck takes the trash. Leaving the blinds open, Tilarna asks Cecil to close them. While she does the garbage truck drives off, when Cecil gets back into the car she drives off in the opposite direction.


A King Maker

Picking up where the last episode left off, Cecil and Tilarna search for the garbage truck. Cecil calls the New Compton waste disposal to inform them that she lost something important in the trash. She’s told that “when your garbage is picked up you lose all rights to it.” She then claims that it’s “important evidence.” At the waste disposal plant, Cecil and Tilarna begin to search for the bow. Cecil calls Kei informing him of the situation. Tilarna is able to use her sense to locate the bow in the massive trash heap.

The bow gets destroyed returning Tilarna and Kuroi to their bodies. As she returns to her body she being beaten by detective Hellmandes. She then beats him up and before she kills him Kei stops her. The next day, Kei and Tilarna attend a barbecue at Captain Zimmer’s house. On the television, Kei sees a news report regarding the mayor’s race. Mozeleemay, from episode 7 is still running as well. As Kei is watching, news breaks stating that the other candidate for mayor, Khan was shot. The shooter is a male Semanian named John Ennaji. The Captain thinks that Zelada may have been responsible by controlling John.

Turns out John Ennaji was already dead and his corpse was manipulated. A police officer calls Tilarna a “damn alien,” and when Kei confronts him he admits that due to being conservative and the killing of Khans he hates Semanian’s. Kei questions his logic, but Tilarna tells him to let it go. Captain Zimmer is disappointed that Zelada maybe involve as it may result in “ethnic strife.” Tilarna suggests they start with the basics, who gains from Khan death. I was originally, disappointed that the series ignored the events of episode 7, but now that they are going back to the mayor storyline I’m pleased.

Kei and Tilarna had to keep working on other cases right. Episode 8 was funny, even though the switched body concept was clique. I was annoyed at the decision by Tilarna to not tell Kei. Had she told him and Cecil earlier they wouldn’t have had so much trouble. Furthermore, at this point in the series they do value each other, so it doesn’t make sense to me that she would want his help. In a way, these last two episodes makes the world feel larger. Going to social events like the barbecue makes the world feel lived in. Regardless, the “racism” in this series is starting to feel more real. As Zelada’s plot unfolds, it will likely get much worst. As this arc continues I’m looking forward to the potential twists.

One Piece Chapter 954: Recap & Review

Like Giving Wings to a Dragon

Hiyori offers Zoro her sword Enma and her brother’s sword Ame no Habakiri. Kawamatsu objects to giving a sword to a man of an unknown origin. Zoro agrees to the exchange. Law has managed to defeat Hawkins, cutting him in half and cutting off his hands. He asks what happened to the alliance Hawkins had with Kid and Apoo. It turns out that Apoo had betrayed them, having been working with Kiado all along. Kiado wanted to recruit the Supernovas for his crew. As Law leaves he speaks to a mysterious figure that enabled him to escape. Meanwhile, Luffy trains his Haki against a steel wall. Hyogoro tells him that he needs to increase his speed of his progression.

Elsewhere, Kin’emon contacts the Ship Maintenance Squad, the Weapon Preparation Squad, Sword Recovery Squad and the Rebel Commanders Squad to tell them of the altered secret Kozuki family message. Apoo tells Kiado that he’s arrived to attend the Fire Festival banquet, as he is looking forward to watching the annual Golden Kagura. Apoo and his crew-mate are joined by a large shadowy figure. On of the children nearby informs her friend that the figures are called “numbers.” Allies of the Beast Pirates, the Numbers are giant sized beings that have two horns and sharp teeth. According, to Queen they all have drinking problems.

Meanwhile, Big Mom and Kiado have decided that they are going to form a alliance to take over the world and kill each other later. The Fire Festival seems to be a perfect moment for the allies of the Shogun to meet. This would largely be for our benefit as we get to see how both sides stack up. I will say that so far it seems that Kiado’s side is more powerful. With the new alliance between Kiado and Big Mom and the introduction of the Numbers, they have gained some strength. However, the hidden figure that rescued Law may be the wildcard that proves me wrong.