The Salty Anime Challenge Day 23: So, how did you find this challenge and what is one last thing that you’d like to be salty about?

The final day of the salty challenge has arrived. First I would like to thank FuelS for creating this challenge. It was refreshing to look for what I don’t like in anime, especially considering the fact that I created this blog for the distinct purpose of presenting the anime that I think are great and worth watching. I would also like to say that I’ve was happy to have such an in-depth conversation with the larger anime community.

I enjoyed reading FiddleTwix‘s salty challenge and would recommend everyone who hasn’t read it, also check out Wanimu challenge. I would also say that this challenge has helped me do the one thing I have failed to do, write daily. While writing a post every day isn’t really necessary, writing more than one a week is good. Hopefully, I will be able to keep up this good habit.

I recommend this challenge to everyone, If you gonna give it try let me know so I can follow. Thank you to everyone that commented.

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The Salty Anime Challenge Day 22: An anime that everyone hates and/or has a low score, but you love

Dragon Ball Z: Movie 3, The Tree of Might (MAL score: 6.93)

The Saiyan named Turlus has come to Earth in order to plant a tree that will both destroy the planet and give him infinite strength. Son Goku and the Z Warriors cannot let this happen and duke it out with the invaders for the sake of the planet. (Source: ANN)

Let’s be honest some anime movies dramatically disappoint, particularity when they are from a popular series. Tree of Might is quite frankly mediocre. The real strange part of this movie is the relationship between the main villian Turlus and Goku. They look exactly alike, except for a skin tone difference. It’s a common trend in the Dragon Ball series to basically copy Goku and suggest some of the characters have no relationship to him.

To be honest the story in DBZ isn’t the most complicated or interesting. In this movie the dialogue is dub, but I liked the action in this movie. Granted the Z fighters get thrashed, but it does remind me of the good old days when DBZ wasn’t all about transforming into Super Saiyan’s. I also like the animation, which still holds up.

The Salty Anime Challenge Day 21: An anime that you thought you’d hate (due to genre/tropes), but actually love.

The anime/manga genre that appeals to me the most is Shonen. So I was surprised that I loved Made in Abyss. On the surface Abyss looks like it’s going to be for kids, with it’s chibi like characters and bright color pallets. Abyss, a Seinen series is for my age group mind you but I generally don’t like the genre. What initial drew me to the series was what always draws me to a series is the high quality animation.

Made in Abyss is an impressive series that subvert the expectations of the viewer. The adults take a backseat to the children and cute bunny like characters. The background environment are often colorful, with bright sunlight even as they travel deeper in the abyss. This anime is a full on display of body horror. The effects of abyss on the human body and mind are brutal, “evisceration, hemorrhaging, swelling, parasitism.” Not to mention the abuse that adults inflicts on these children.

It also tugs at the heartstrings. I haven’t seen many anime that is as balanced as this one, while fighting isn’t it primary purpose, it has good action. The story is incredibly intriguing, the feeling you get from the characters is enthralling. It might be too dark for some, but I find that to be the reason I enjoy it.

The Salty Anime Challenge Day 20: What is an anime argument that you absolutely hate hearing?

Sakura Haruno is useless

Sakura Haruno or Sakura Uchiha is one of the most hated anime characters. Being in a shonen series that focuses on battle, Sakura is “useless” in battle early in the series. However, in Naruto strength isn’t the only thing that matters (at least early in the series). In Part 1 of the series Sakura’s physical prowess is limited. Sakura’s particular talent that surpassed even Sasuke and of course Naruto was her intellect and her chakra control. During the Chunin exams Sakura is smart enough to both realize that the ten questions are too difficult for most genin’s and answer them.

During the second stage of the Chunin exam, after Oorochimaru gives Sasuke the curse mark, she watches Naruto and Sasuke all night as they’re lie unconscious. She valiantly tries to save her teammates despite being clearly over powered and out numbered. Obviously, Rock Lee aids her, and later team 10, but if Sakura had more power I think critics would have cheered her more. In anime, many fans only seem to value power with courage, not power without it. For this reason Sakura’s attempt to save her teammates goes unappreciated.

In Part 2, Sakura really begins to show her skills. While, the characters in Naruto become better Sakura’s is arguably the most improved (Ino maybe close). She and Naruto face off against Kakashi in another bell test. During this test Sakura first shows her massive strength when she uses her Cherry Blossom Impact. A skill that makes use of her chakra control to devastating effect. When she and the rest of team 7 arrive to Suna when Gaara is kidnapped, she is quickly able to remove the poison found in Kankuro, heal him and create an antidote, which no Sand ninja was able to do.

Sakura’s best presentation of her fighting prowess is her battle with Chiyo against Sasori. Chiyo initially takes the lead in this fight using Sakura as a human puppet, making great use of her super strength. This method continues to prove effective once Sasori uses the third Kazekage’s iron sand ability. However, with Chiyo being one armed her effectiveness as a puppeteer is decreased. During this battle Chiyo notes that Sakura is able to “see through the attack patterns of Sasori,” she is able to deduce the pattern of his fingers and hands.

Even Sasori is impressed with her ability to both fight against him and create an antidote for his complicated poison. Finally, Sakura during the Fourth Shinobi World War is an important medic keeping the allied forces alive. Sakura uses the “Strength of a Hundred Seal,” she spent three years storing chakra a feat that is difficult due to the level of chakra control required. When Naruto is in danger of death, it’s Sakura that saves his life. When her medical ninjutsu fails, she “makes an incision in Naruto’s chest and manually pumps his heart to keep him alive while pleading for him to live because he is close to achieving his dream.” Ask yourself, What would happen if Naruto had died? 

Look, Sakura isn’t without her flaws. She was pretty annoying in the beginning of the series, and she treated both Naruto and Rock Lee poorly. While, she was completely useless during battle, she was helpful intellectually and displayed courage. I found her love of Sasuke, who was abusive and tried to KILL her TWICE was ridiculous. However, if you hold that against her keep in mind that Naruto is just as bad. Her value was never in battle anyway. While it’s undeniable that a in Shonen series, battles are the most important, so Sakura was inherently going to become a secondary character.

Many Sakura haters compare her power to Sasuke and Naruto, they ignore the fact that unlike Sasuke born with the privilege of having a Sharingan and the curse seal and Naruto given half the Nine-tails chakra as an infant. She was given none of these advantages, but mastered difficult medial ninjutsu and saving many lives. A lot of people seemed to believe that Sakura’s abilities are somehow unearned because we didn’t get to see all her training.

However, we don’t see most of Sasuke’s training or even Naruto’s during the time skip. I think this is mostly a negative bias. I think Sakura’s transformation from the beginning of the series, both personality wise and ability wise changed more than anyone and had to work with less than her teammate. She was important to keep the alliance alive during the war. She should be lauded, not decried.

The Salty Anime Challenge Day 19: Least favorite -dere character

Kamidere

Their are many different dere types in anime but my least favorite has to be Kamidere. It’s an anime archetype for characters with god complexes. The word is derived from the combination of Kami (which means god) and dere(which means loving or sweet). The dere isn’t limited to just love of a particular person but also love of something. In this case they love “power.” Their believe they’re destined for greatness, the world is their’s it’s just a matter of time.

Kamidere types also have a superior complex, basically they are better than everyone. They are often unbearable and can become cruel. For this reason I often root against them to be defeated. Kamidere’s are usually tremendously talented so their self confidence isn’t without merit, however, they take it to an extreme. All Kamidere characters are evil, Black Star from Soul Eater is one of the main good protagonists in the series.

“My name is Black☆Star. I’ll surpass the power of the gods.”

Some of the most known Kamidere characters:

  • Light Yagami (Death Note)
  • Lelouch Lamperouge (Code Geass)
  • Father (Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood)
  • Enel (One Piece)
  • Satsuki Kiryuuin (Kill La Kill)

“As long as there is breath left in me, Satsuki Kiryuin has a chance at victory!.” – Satsuki Kiryuin

The Salty Anime Challenge Day 18: An unpopular anime that deserves being unpopular

This was the hardest challenge to do. Unpopular anime generally don’t make a lot of attention, and don’t warrant my attention. However, I have found one that is unpopular and deserves to be. If you have been reading my salty challenge you know that I hate anime that seems to exist to pander to children  and my disdain for CG anime you won’t be surprised at my choice.

SD Gundam or Superior Defender Gundam Force, according to My Anime List, SD is ranked 8432nd and popularity is 4673 with a score of 5.49. Gundam is one of the most storied anime series of all time, focusing intergalactic conflict and complex issues like war. It generates billions in revenue a year and Gundam’s were even on the postal stamps.

“Get ready for Gundam like you’ve never seen it before! …Really cute and tiny!

Toonami Promo

SD is a CG anime, because it’s for kids it watered down compared to other Gundam series. The Gundam’s by the way are sentient (think and talk), they aren’t piloted (clearly too small for that) making it hard to take them seriously. The “small form” of the Gundam’s were used to sell “capsule toys” and the sales of merchandise for SD was greater than the other series. Less serious, SD focused more on humor and was popular with young children.

Anyway, I think you can see why SD Gundam earned it’s unpopularity. I think a quote from a fan reviewer on Myanimelist, sums it up best:

I have never written a review before, but Superior Defender Gundam Force has inspired me to do so. You see, I generally like anime. I find it difficult to hate or even dislike an anime, because I know that there is a fandom for it out there and that a few sad, lonely, animators worked hard to make it.

But I can’t say that about SD Gundam Force. If Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam showed us how awesome U.C. can be, Gundam Force shows us the depths of human depravity. I stumbled upon this blight on the anime world when a local video store was having a sale and my friend bought episodes 10-12 for a dollar. As it turns out, a dollar was asking too much.

The Anime Salty Challenge Day 17: An anime that you have no desire to watch, even though it’s popular

Food Wars!: Shokugeki no Soma

Soma is a manga/anime written by Yuto Tsukuda and illustrated by Shun Saeki. The series focuses on “Soma Yukihira aspires to become a full-time chef in his father Joichiro’s family restaurant and surpass his father’s culinary skills.” Soma later enrolls in the “Totsuki Saryo Culinary Institute, an elite culinary school where students engage in food competitions called Shokugeki.” 

This series is highly popular, the manga has sold over 14 million copies. To me, Soma is a series that’s similar to Prince of Tennis or Welcome to the Ballroom, meaning that they not about fighting. I do try to watch more variety of anime. I particularly liked Yuri on Ice, but I don’t want to watch this series at all. I like to eat good food but I don’t care to watch it. I might be missing out, but I don’t think even anime can make me care about cooking.

The Salty Anime Challenge Day 16: Least favorite OP or ED

To be honest I usually avoid OP’s and ED’s. Basically, I skip OP’s and turn off the episode before the ED come on. The favorite OP I remember from my childhood was the old Dragon Ball Z opening and the original Pokemon OP. I did also like many of the early Naruto OP’s.

However, one series OP I did notice was Tokyo Ghoul Root A, why because it was terrible. The OP has music from Osterreich called Incompetence. Kaneki literally just stands in one place, the colors are pale, the changing background are cheesy to me. Kaneki’s face does change but it’s not interesting to me. I know that some anime seem to spend too much money on the OP but this is taking cutting corners too far. Regardless, this OP is forgettable.

 

The Salty Anime Challenge Day 15: what is something that you find yourself always avoiding

In terms of story, characters, animation, voice acting, etc… what is something that you find yourself always avoiding.

In anime everything can take away from a anime being good. Story is probably the most important aspect of a good anime , however I won’t get to enjoy that story if the animation is terrible. I try not to be an animation snob but I really can’t enjoy anime if it has average animation. I’m particularly fond of a type of animation called Sakuga.

Sakuga (作画) (lit., “drawing pictures”) is a term used in anime to describe moments in a show or movie when the quality of the animation improves drastically, typically for the sake of making a dramatic point or enlivening the action. It’s pronounced SA-ku-ga.

Generally American animation is animated frame by frame, whereas Japanese animation often will animate “long scenes in which only the mouth of a character moves during an important monologue, or depicting rapid motion with a character frozen in an action pose against a swift-moving background.” Due to money and time limitation Japanese animation tends to skip frames and reuse some.

However, Sakuga is an expressive and expensive form of animation. Animating frame by frame, movements are more realistic and fluid. Sakuga is usually used for action, like fight scenes or to convey emotional faces. If you have time treat yourself to some Sakuga animation compilations on YouTube. Basically, if the anime doesn’t have high animation quality I won’t watch it.

 

 

The Salty Anime Day 14: An anime that shouldn’t have been as long as it was

I should probably pick Detective Conan, which is currently on it’s 908th episode and has been in production January 8th, 1996. I use to watch this series but I lost interest years ago. I won’t pick, One Piece because while it’s long, I think it’s as long as it needs to be. One Piece has a lot of story left.

My pick for the anime that is too long is, Dragon Ball. This series was started in 1986, the first series Dragon Ball lasted 153 episodes. Dragon Ball Z reached 291 in the late 90’s, then there was the terrible Dragon Ball GT which is thankfully the shortest with 64 episodes. If you could get through that series you probably had enough and was grateful that Dragon Ball was over. However, in 2009 Dragon Ball Kai was released and featured 159 episodes.

Personally, I didn’t watch most of the latest series. I got too repetitive find ways for saiyans to get get stronger and stronger. On some level this has always been true of the series. However, I feel that after the Cell saga Dragon Ball really went to far with the transformations. Super Saiyan 3 was cool looking but it didn’t really feel all that different. Weirdly it seemed that SS2 was more important than SS3. Villains kept getting ridiculously stronger and the particular formula was Goku quickly gets stronger, Vegeta then follows and nobody else does. That said the final arc of Dragon Ball Super did try to provide a opportunity for less powerful characters like Krillin.

Of course my biggest grip had to be the downgrade of Gohan. During the Cell Saga Gohan had surpassed everyone being the first to reach SS2 at age 9. He later put school work a head of his training (which maybe due to only being half Saiyan). Gohan maintain a great potential, Vegeta suggested that Gohan had the “potential exceeded both Goku’s and his own.” While I think that the Dragon Ball series was too long I did enjoy much of it (not GT) and the tournament arc at the end of Super was great.