Anime

Tokyo Ghoul

I’ve been hearing about “Tokyo Ghoul” for a couple of weeks now so I decided to give it a try, I wasn’t disappointed. Tokyo Ghoul is an anime series that was adapted around the manga of the same name. Created by Sui Ishida and serialized in Weekly Young Jump. The series was licensed by Funimation  for streaming in the United States.

 

Episode 1

Higeki (Tragedy)

Gh3Tokyo Ghoul opens up with a very gory ( though not explicit ) scene of Rize Kamishiro consuming several dead humans. She is called a “binge eater”, due to her eating behavior. She is interrupted by someone wearing a mask. He claims that  he has orders to “take her alive”. He says that before he does he wishes to take a limb. With pliers in hand he attacks her but she easily evades him and escapes.

We are introduced to Ken Kaneki and his friend Hideyoshi Nagachika nicknamed Hide as they discuss his boring date ideas. We also meet Kirishima Toka who become important later. Hide tries to hit on her as Ken tells him to quit it. A beautiful woman walks into the shop, she has purple hair and glasses.

She pulls out the same book that Ken is reading. He successfully asks her out and she agrees. During their date Ken reveals more about himself, how his parents are both dead. As he walks Rize home they become secluded in an alley way. Ken asks Rize for another date, she agrees that shes “interested” and while giving him a hug she bites him.

GH2She proclaims that she finds him delicious and that she asks him if she “knows” what she likes more than reading. While Ken has utter terror on his face, she says “pulling out all the organs of someone “. He unsurprisingly flees in terror but doesn’t get to far. She throws him through a wall, and tears out some of his organs. While attacking him some of the steel beams fall from the ceiling killing Rize.

The Doctor operating on Ken uses some of Rize organs to save his life. He wakes up  having “lost” his sense of taste. While listen to a television show Ken hears a scientist talking about the eating habits of ghouls. He begins to panic as he eats everything in his house fearing he might be a ghoul. While out in public the following night he begins to have urges to eat humans.

He rushes to his house and sees that his eye is similar to Rize. He attempt to commit suicide but fails. While back out side he smell something sweet. He follows the scent only to find that its a ghoul eating a human and the scent was from the body. As the ghoul offers him a piece, the ghoul is killed by Nishiki. Nishiki attacks Ken and attempts to kill him. Ken is saved by Kirishima who dominates Nishiki in a short fight. Ken beings to panic as his hunger consumes him and Kirishima forces some flesh down his throat.

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Opinion:

It’s way too early to determine whether I like this series or not but I really liked this episode. I find the story very interesting especially considering the fact that Ghouls are familiar to the larger society. The society appears to treat this fact as ordinary and doesn’t seem to be afraid to go out in public (even at night).

I want to see more of the fighting to get a greater sense of this series but it seems to be brutal. The tone of the series is perfect, its dark and intense which is completely appropriate. Clearly ghouls can die, but can regular humans kill them and how. More of the story will obviously be revealed later and at the point of this three episodes were released I have some to get caught up.

 

Review Scores: Tokyo Ghoul

Animation: 8

Story: 8

Characters: 8

Overall: 7.7

 

 

 

Anime

Sailor Moon Crystal

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Episode 1

Usagi – Sailor Moon

This series reboot start much the way the previous one did, with Usagi (Serena in the English) waking up late for school. She is 14 years old and clumsy as she falls down the stairs rushing to school. On her way she steps on and trips on a cat, she removes it bandage revealing a crescent moon.

Naru Osaka her best friend takes her to her mother jewelry store, were a sale is occurring. Usagi having just received a 30 on her test knows her mother won’t be buying her anything. On her way home she runs into a guy in a tuxedo, who picks on her for her poor grades.

While laying down in her bed dreaming she’s scratched by a talking cat named Luna. Luna give Usagi the broad that transforms her into Sailor Moon. While transformed Usagi hears her friend Naru’s in danger. She arrives to save her friend, defeating Morga with ” Moon Tiara Boomerang”.

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Opinion:

It’s been a number of years since I last watched sailor moon, so I don’t remember much of the detail of each episode. This turns out to have been a good thing. While many aspects of this episode felt familiar, I don’t recall much and this series so far feels new. Of course I’m sure that much is different in this series reboot.

I originally thought that I wouldn’t appreciate the artistic style but looking at it in motion I changed my mind. The art style is reminiscent of the manga, and it’s basically the live version of the manga series. The colors are a bit muted but it feels appropriate in order to create a specific mood of this series. The elongated style of the limbs add a distinct look to the series.

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I’m not sure but the series seems to use 3D or at least heavy shadow. It’s is clearly on display during Usagi’s transformation into Sailor Moon. The series maintains the humor I remember, as well as the clumsy nature of Usagi. It also has the romance part is also still in this series (which too be honest as a little boy I didn’t really care about). I still don’t, but I don’t mind that its still there.

What is different about the series seems to be some of Sailor Moon’s abilities. I don’t recall her having a “Ultrasonic Scream”, that can knock people unconscious. Her classic ability “Moon Tiara Boomerang” looks more epic than I remember. If I had one problem with this series as a kid it was that the Sailor Scouts had very few attacks at their disposal. I’m hoping they add some more depth to their fighting ability this time around. Oh, I miss the origin American intro to the series.

SM2For anyone new to the Sailor Moon series “Wired.com” has a wonderful FAQ.

 

Anime

Shingeki no Kyojin (Attack on Titan) – Sudden Visitors OVA 2

Sudden Visitors is the second OVA (Original Video Animation) of the Attack on Titan series, the first being “Ilse’s Notebook“. 

Review


It’s the year 847 and Jean is drawing a picture of a girl that looks like Mikasa He’s under the covers, while he cries. His mother opens the door with food in her hands but Jean snaps at her asking why “she didn’t knock”. He kicks her out, destroy’s the drawing and states that he will join the “Military Police”.

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Two years later he does, while in one of the cities within the wall, Conner says he’s never been to a walled city and Sasha hopes their will be a lot of good food. Armin and Marco ask Jean if he will return home, but he angrily reply’s with “shut up”. 

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A flashback shows Jean and the rest of the 104th trainee squad participating in a mock defense of the “Trost District”. Jean teams up with Armin and Annie, when their first target is found Mikasa strikes first. Jean compliments her stating that she is “the only one who is better than him in the squad”. 

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When Jean and his team face three other targets, they are “stolen” by Conner, Reiner and Sasha. Jean gets into an argument claiming that they’re cheaters. Conner asks if Jean’s anger has anything to do with his mother, which further angers him. Dot Pixis tells them that they will determine their dispute with a food contest.

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Jean is at first hesitant but decides to agree when Sasha challenges him. He goes with Armin and Annie to search the forest for a large boar. Jean states that the giant boar has the best meat, and they probably will win. Sasha, Conner and Reiner appear next to him, they find the boar first.

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Reiner determines that the wild boar is “impossible” to kill. However, Sasha hit’s him twice changing his mind. The boar awakens and Sasha and Conner attack. Jean and his team also follow the boar, Sasha kills the boar by shooting it in the head with an arrow.

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Eren and Mikasa are packing boxes into a truck. Eren seems to have difficulty with one box but Mikasa is able to handle three boxes. Jeans mom appears asking where Jean was. When Jeans mom finds him he is embarrassed and rudely tells her to leave. Eren tells him that he shouldn’t treat his mother that way.

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Jean later plots to steal beef from the officer pantry. Armin is afraid of this that he manages to break both of his legs running away. Annie also bails on his plan, but before he can accomplish his plan he is interrupted by another solider. The solider gives him the bag his mother left for him. He is reminded of what his mother has done for him.

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Sasha and Jean prepare their meals for Dot Pixis. Sasha’s dish is simply meat and he appears to become effected by its deliciousness. He imagines a ridiculous scenario when he is fighting titans, he is stopped by Krista, Eren, Armin, Conner and Mikasa in their “titan” modes. When he returns to reality he is rendered motionless by Sasha’s food.

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Jeans meal is next, he eats it but remains quiet. He finally announces his winner, Jean Kirstein. Everyone is surprised including Jean, but Dot Pixis explains that the reason Sasha lost was because she only offered meat, not a meal. At the end Jean make amends with Sasha and plans on visiting his mother.

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Pros:

  1. Effective comedy
  2. Greater insight into Jean

Cons:

  1. No Killing of titans
  2. None of the dark tone of the main series
  3. limited Mikasa & Eren

 

Opinion:

This Ova unlike the previous one didn’t add to the lore of the titans. Instead it took a more in-depth focus on a generally secondary character, Jean Kirstein. I find Jean generally likable character in the main series but he really wasn’t until the end of the OVA.

His main unattractive characteristic was his horrible treatment of his mother. Considering the fact that some of his fellow solider (like Eren), don’t even have mother anymore his behavior was even more jarring. Overall, I found this OVA to be very funny and even though I was expecting more titan action I wasn’t disappointed.

 

Anime

Kill La Kill – Episode 24: Recap and Review

Kill 24.1

The Four Devas, along with Nudist Beach find it difficult to break through the barrier protecting the transmitter. Meanwhile, Ryuko and Satsuki battle their mother and Nui. Ragyo uses her power “Absolute Domination” to negate the power of the other Kamui and Goku Uniforms.

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Absolute Domination will also ” awaken the Life Fibers lying dormant in those outfits”. After all of Earth’s inhabitants become consumed by the life fiber, the Earth is suppose to become another “Celestial Seed Cocoon Planet”. As a result a “newborn” Life fiber will “spread across the universe”.

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Aikuro and Tsumugu arrive and merge DTR to form “Ultimate Double Naked DTR”. They are quickly dispatched by Ragyo, she activates the still living original life fiber so that it can consume the rest of the humans. The Four Devas along with Mako arrive, and Mako begins her usually spotlight speech.

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Nui interrupts her speech and aims to kill her, but Gamagoori intervenes and gets stabbed in his stomach. Nui attempts to kill him but Ryuko (without Senketsu), blocks Nui with her scissor swords. Ryuko, being “somewhere in between” human and clothing is able to fight Nui.

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Gamagoori appears to lose consciousness as he tells Mako that he “has no regrets”. Ryuko attempts to destroy Ragyo’s “Absolute Domination”, but he friends are captured by the original life fiber. As Ryuko becomes reckless Senketsu yell’s at her to stop, however Satsuki tells Senketsu that his words won’t have the desired effect. Senketsu then concludes that Satsuki can understand him.

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As Ragyo goes into the tradition bad guy laugh, she is pierced by Senketsu. When Ragyo asks how its possible, Senketsu response that its “neither human or clothing”. Senketsu then uses “blade gale”, to fly through Ragyo removing Rei in the process. This ends the effects of Absolute Domination, allowing everyone to use their power.

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Satsuki and Ryuko team up with each using one scissor sword, while the rest of the group destroy the transmitter. Nui however blocks their path, the copies of her keep getting in their way. Gamagoori arrives and uses his “Ego burst”, with this power he rips a hole in the transmitter. Nudist Beach then uses their DTR to blow up the transmitter.

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As Satsuki and Ryuko appear to have defeat their mother plan, she tells Nui to “discard her body”. Nui begins to decapitate herself, much to everyone’s horror. The original life fiber absorbs her head, and Nui becomes clothing for Ragyo. Her new costume feature rockets on the bottom, she fly’s to the satellite activating Absolute Domination again on a planetary scale.

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Ryuko with the help of all the other uniforms, activate “Senketsu Fashion Week”. Leaving everyone naked she rockets to Ragyo, fusing the scissor swords together. The sword however isn’t effective, then Ragyo transforms her costume again. Ryuko decides to “end” this fight but is stabbed through the stomach by Ragyo. Senketsu reveals that along with Ryuko they can absorb Ragyo powers.

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Ryuko uses Absolute Domination to return the humans to normal. Ragyo kills herself and Senketsu is destroyed while returning through the Earths atmosphere. Heart broken Ryuko appears to resolve herself to crashing to the Earth. However, Satsuki along with everyone else at the academy brace her fall.

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Opinion:

The Finally of Kill La Kill was bitter sweet. I thoroughly enjoy both this episode and the series. I liked the balance of character participation in the episode, even though Ryuko finally takes over.  Ryuko basically going “Super Saiyan” was cool, but I found the name “Senketsu Fashion Week” to be a little silly.

I was disappointed that there wasn’t more in depth fighting against Ragyo at the end. I wished there was more team work between Ryuko and Satsuki, but was satisfied that Ryuko finally acknowledge that Satsuki is her sister. Absolute Domination was anything but Absolute or Dominating, but it probably was impossible to be too powerful.

Gamagoori clearly is in love with Mako, and I’m surprise that he had a more dynamic part in this episode compared to the other Devas. The largest aspect of this episode was the death of Senketsu, which I didn’t expect. Even though he wasn’t needed any longer, I though Senketsu would have survived. Overall, I really liked this series, the same elements unsurprisingly appeared in this series also appeared in Gurren Lagann. However, I still think Gurren Lagann was better but not by much, though the animation of both series was spectacular.

 

 

 

Anime

Kill La Kill – Episode 23: Recap and Review

Imitation Gold

This episode picks up right where the last open ended, with Mako wearing her Ultima Uniform. Iori is criticized for returning the uniform to Mako, but he explains that she has the most improvement in abilities. He stats range from 0000 to 9999 in all categories except intelligence. Mako springs into action use the ” Seven Hundred Plus 299 Strong Super Suction Saver”, three of the four devas aim to help her.

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Houka informs Ryuko and Satsuki on why Nui cannot “regenerate her arms”. The Scissor Sword and the Bakuzan can cut life fibers, however the most powerful fibers begin tho “regenerating immediately after they’re cut”. If you cut them from “both sides at the same time”, you can “sever the regenerating life fiber in succession”.

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Ryuko and Satsuki engage Ragyo in battle, she reveals twin swords made of “Ultra hard Life Fiber”. This weapon is the “basis” of Scissor Sword and Bakuzan. Ragyo appears able to handle Ryuko and Satsuki by herself. Ragyo takes to the air and Ryuko and Satsuki follow. They battle mid-air, Ragyo handles them effortlessly. Ryuko decides to turn her attention toward the Origin Life Fiber.

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Meanwhile, Mako continues to fight while simultaneously eating. The original life fiber intends on consuming the rest of the humans on the Sol, it changes course. Mako and the rest of Nudists beach are overwhelmed by the number of COVER’s. The four Devas arrive to aid them, wearing their new Three Star Ultima Uniforms. Together they easily dispatch the COVER’s.

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Ryuko and Satsuki appear tired from fighting Ragyo, but Ryuko signals to Satsuki and begins to attack. She uses her finishing move, “Thread Stripper”. Ryuko only manages to cut Ragyo, which she quickly heals. However, Ragyo has impaled Ryuko with her sword and proceeds to cut her in half.

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Satsuki enraged fails to dent her mother, but its all part of the plan to distract Ragyo. Apparently, Ryuko counter her blade then jumped into the ocean prior to being cut in two. She healed herself so that she could take out the Origin Fiber. Satsuki along with the four Devas battle Ragyo. Aikuro decides to use the final trump card of the Naked Sun, “the Great Naked Blade”.

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While within the core of the Origin Fiber, Ryuko uses her “Double Edge Decapitation Mode”, then her finishing move Thread Stripper. Ryuko finds it difficult to cut the core, while the turbine of the Naked Sun fails. Mako inspired by Ryuko run in one of the turbines (like a lab rat), restoring its power. Together they pierce the core of the Original Life Fiber.

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Nui arrives to reveal the Ragyo Kamui “Shinra-Koketsu”, her arms are restored as a thank you from Ragyo. Ryuko, Satsuki and the other celebrate before they attack the academy to destroy the transmitter.

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