Mega Post! – Update, Mini Reviews, & More!

How’s it Going Everybody?

I know I’ve been pretty quiet lately so here is a BIG post to make up for that. This post will cover the following in order:  An update regarding site activity and my life offline, Anime ABC update, some mini reviews, and cool things I’ve done/bought/to check out. It’ll be a bit of a longer post so jump to whatever sections interest you the most.

Site Update

I’d like to remind you all that I am currently in my final term at my University and will (hopefully) be graduating in June with a degree in marketing. This makes me unreasonably busy, so I just don’t have a ton of time for much extra. What this means for you guys is that I am still on hiatus. Jacob has been fairly active with his movie posts, so I hope you all have been able to enjoy those!

As for school, that department is going about as well as it can. I’m set to pass all of my classes so there is no need to adjust my current schedule. However, this does have an impact on one article series that I run on this site. Which leads me to…

Where’s the Next Anime ABC Voting Round?

Unfortunately, this series is on hold for a little while. Don’t worry, I AM NOT GETTING RID OF IT! Let me explain why this is on hold, because the reason is not what you think. It does not take much to throw up a voting round and then prep for an ABC review by watching it. Most of the work comes from the actual review part where I really think about the show and try to write a more unique/interesting/experimental/thoughtful/etc… piece. Meaning, the issue lies elsewhere.

In this case, it’s with Qualtics, the survey site I use to run the ABC voting rounds. I’m currently in the process of transferring my surveys from my school account to a personal one. Until I have all of that sorted out, as my Qualtrics account for school is tied to my current job (which I plan on quitting, another reason for this data transferring), I will not be creating any new surveys. This is the only reason Anime ABC’s is on hold right now.

I have a lot of surveys, personal and work related, so this transfer process is going to take some time. On the work side, I have to make sure to only leave work related content on the school one so they can have records of stuff I did as well as having access to ongoing surveys for support purposes. Hopefully that makes sense to you all, and many apologies for delaying this series because I really love doing it and I feel like some of you guys really like it as well.

Mini Reviews – Kaiji Season 2

501Kaiji’s second season started off with a bang, much like season one. Unlike season one, I stayed interested in season two of Kaiji for much more of its runtime. The big reason is that the gambling games featured in season 2 were more varied and played out interestingly.

However, by the end a huge flaw surfaced with the show. The pachinko arc was so long. I made the Dragon Ball joke last time, but it felt the same way here again. You can view my thoughts on season one here.

This is a real shame too, because I actually really enjoyed season 2 up until this point. Upon conclusion, the show does not wrap up the main conflict from season 1, but ends in a good enough fashion. Overall, this was better than season 1 (even having me retroactively rate season one a bit lower) but just barely. Only worth a watch if you have seen season one but is not really worth recommending past that.

Mini Review – Ajin Season 2

ajin-anime-2nd-season-two-netflix-release

As you may remember, I enjoyed Ajin‘s first season rather well. Check out that review here. This even sparked a discussion about the use of CG in anime, which I encourage you to check out as well. You can do so here. Naturally, I was pretty excited to see how things would play out in this anime’s second season.

For awhile, I was prepared to say that the second season was better than the first. However, there were a few things that only kept my enjoyment of season two at about the same level as season one. The biggest reason had to do with the lack of a resolute ending.

Everything feels like it is wrapped up nicely but in the last few minutes of the show Ajin decides to setup for a season 3. I’d be fine with this, except there is no season 3. Netflix has a real problem with its original series and that’s not knowing when to end them. Ajin has been out for awhile, and if they wanted it to be 3 seasons, that’s how much they should have done right away. Don’t start up a show like this and then just leave it incomplete when it easily could have been completed.

Outside of this, season 2 offered what I wanted in all aspects coming from season 1. There was not quite as much spectacle in this season, but that much was to be expected. Some interesting ideas and a story that I enjoyed. I would love to watch more, granted it ever got made. I’d recommend watching this one despite the non-ending and give it about the same rating as season one (8/10).

Mini Review – 13 Reasons Why

mv5bytfmnzrlnwytmmfmni00ztfilwjhodgtogm5odq5ntgxzwuwl2ltywdlxkeyxkfqcgdeqxvymtexndq2mti-_v1_ux182_cr00182268_al_Another Netflix show…

I’m going to keep this one short, since I could write up a pretty lengthy piece if I had some time to properly write about it. I did not like this show.

13 Reasons Why creates an initial mystery that is compelling but quickly fizzles out by the end. A lot of this comes down to poor directorial decisions and sloppy writing in its second half. The show also handled a lot of its subject matter irresponsibly. This series really glorifies suicide and the creators (whom went out of their way to ask questions about what they should and should not do from experts) did just about everything that they shouldn’t for what they chose to show on screen.

There’s a lot on this series already floating on the internet. Take a few seconds to explore that on your own if you want to know more about that specific issue. For me, the real nail in the coffin was the ending. Same problem I had with Ajin. Netflix, stop leaving things with sequel hooks. In this case, 13 Reasons Why should be getting a second season but still!

I want to note that while I didn’t like the show overall, I think parts of it were pretty good. Like I said, the start of the show was excellent and there were some fairly humorous/interesting scenes regarding Clay’s anxiety induced hallucinations but that was about it for me. What season one left unresolved actually has me a bit interested so I’ll likely check out season 2.

I wouldn’t watch this if you are at risk of suicide, since it is going to make things worse. Also, some triggering topics for many in here as well. Just a heads up. I think that this show started a conversation, but in a irresponsible way, so in general I wouldn’t recommend it outside of discussion purposes and only if you are prepared for the material.

Cool Stuff – Just Random Stuff to Check Out or That I’ve Done Lately

I’ll go ahead and break this up into categories:  IRL stuff, music, and video games.

IRL Stuff

Let’s talk about the IRL fun stuff that I’ve done lately (not much). I recently went to a magic show called “The Maze.” It was pretty good and I enjoyed myself. I would encourage folks to look it up. The magician turned out to be a guy who uses magic to entertain while discussing various philosophical topics before moving into his personal story about how he became a Christian. This may be a turn-off for some, but it was a very tasteful program and you could tell the guy was very genuine.

I’ve been keeping up with dance of course! In fact, we are having one later this weekend on Saturday with my all time favorite instructor for my all time favorite dance (cross-step waltz). It’s going to be amazing!

Next week my church is running its very first board game convention. This will be a fundraiser but more fun than what we typically do. It’s something new we are trying with our Pastor who is a big board game fan. I’ve never been to a thing like this so am pretty excited to run it and participate in the event.

Lastly, been rewatching (for me, they haven’t seen this one) Chunibyo with The K’s. I love that show and we have been enjoying it quite a lot. Curious, who else likes this anime and thoughts on the second season? I enjoyed both immensely. Season 1 is better but season 2 was still quite good for me.

Music

I just have to share this. Lately I’ve been enjoying Spotify and have been finding all sorts of wonderful music. I’m going to just share one song in this section, but I could easily share more. I found a song called, “The Walking Taco.”

Just listen to it. I love it!

Link here.

Video Games

Lately I’ve been crazy into Hearthstone with my free time. I got inches away from Legend ranking, and scored a personal best in the previous season. However, this is not the only game I’ve been playing.

Heroes of the Storm has been trying to get people in game and I caved and gave it a try (for the sick D.va skin in Overwatch). I actually enjoy this game. I hate lane based MOBA things like LOL but can enjoy this one well enough. Decent enough recommendation from me for this one.

Lastly, wanted to highlight an innovative game I’ve been playing called The Sexy Brutale. Terrible title, fun game. It’s a time manipulation, murder mystery, puzzle game. It’s fairly unique but could be compared to some degree to Ghost Trick. I’ll leave a video below that discusses The Sexy Brutale in more depth.

See Ya Next Time!

Leave me any comments or questions below and let me know what you’ve been enjoying lately.

-Jon Spencer

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