Barakamon, Sweetness & Lightning, and Usagi Drop – What’s the Appeal?

What’s the Appeal & Why do I Love these Anime so Much?

I was watching Sweetness & Lightning with my mother awhile back and we had an excellent time watching it. It reminded me of Barakamon and Usagi Drop, two shows that have some commonalities with Sweetness & Lightning. This got me thinking, “Why exactly do shows like these appeal so much to me?” Join me as I discuss why anime like these are so impactful to me and why they have such innate appeal. Continue reading “Barakamon, Sweetness & Lightning, and Usagi Drop – What’s the Appeal?”

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The Importance of Tone – A Look at Death Parade & Little Busters!

Picture This:

Panicked, you rush out the door and hop into your car. You are late… again. Today is the most important meeting of your life, you are supposed to be pitching your company’s “next big thing” to a big fish client. Scrambled, you try and call ahead, the meeting is just about to start and you are at least thirty minutes away. No luck! With no regard to your self, you begin racing to the office as fast as your car will allow. A sense of dread hangs in the air as you finally arrive at the office. You enter, head down, ashamed. Clearly, your boss isn’t happy because you do have a history of pushing your luck, but you have never messed up so badly before. Can you guess what happens next?

The above paragraph is an example of tone in an everyday, although extreme, scenario. Without me telling you how the story ends, you were probably able to figure it out given context clues provided by the tone of the narrative. We don’t often actively think about this sort of thing as we go about our busy lives, but you are more likely to clue into the importance of tone in books, TV, film, and yes, especially anime. Today I take a look at two shows that handle tone very differently:  Death Parade and Little Busters! Continue reading “The Importance of Tone – A Look at Death Parade & Little Busters!”

Welcome to the Ballroom – My Biggest Disappointment with the 2017 Summer Anime Season

I Love Ballroom Dancing

When I found that there was going to be an anime about one of my favorite activities, ballroom dancing, I was super excited! Unlike last year’s Yuri!!! on Ice, there is a layer of relatability that Welcome to the Ballroom, or Ballroom e Youkoso, has for me. Now that we are a decent way into the Summer 2017 anime season, why am I so disappointed with a show that should have me jumping (or should I say dancing?) with joy? Continue reading “Welcome to the Ballroom – My Biggest Disappointment with the 2017 Summer Anime Season”

Edogawa Rampo – How Rampo Kitan Inspired Me to Read a Japanese Classic

Edogawa Rampo is the Grandfather of Japanese Mystery Literature

rampo_edogawa_02

Hirai Taro, the real name of famed author Edogawa Rampo, was born October 21, 1894. Rampo took inspiration from Western mystery writers such as Dolye and Poe (among others). In fact, his nom de plume is dedicated to Edgar Allan Poe as it is a direct verbal translation of Poe’s name. Existing in a time between critically acclaimed Agatha Christie and Edgar Wallace, Edogawa Rampo was instrumental in shaping the modern day mystery genre in Japan. Continue reading “Edogawa Rampo – How Rampo Kitan Inspired Me to Read a Japanese Classic”

VRV – Worth It?

You May Have Noticed Crunchyroll Pushing a NEW Service:  VRV

Note:  this article was written 7/21/2017. Some points made in this article may be irrelevant as the service is updated for those of you viewing this in future land.

I mean, how could you not? At least, if you live in the US. Countless ads and emails have been flung in my direction for this new service they’ve cooked up. Eventually, I caved and gave it a shot. So here we are, a month into using this service. Was it worth the price of admission or was I better off with just using Crunchyroll all along? Continue reading “VRV – Worth It?”

Top 25 Anime Openings

nfzmig8When the OP is Just Right…

I know it’s been awhile since I’ve personally put an actual article up on here. So I thought I’d get back into the swing of things by celebrating some of my favorite anime openings. I’ve seen a couple hundred anime, so this list took some careful consideration to whittle down to just 25.

The list is in no particular order and the only rule is that the opening has to have come from a show I’ve seen. Other than that, no repeats for stuff I’ve reviewed outside of honorable mentions. Obviously this is just my personal taste, so if an OP you love isn’t on the list I probably didn’t see the show or just didn’t like the opening that much ¯\_(ツ)_/¯  Continue reading “Top 25 Anime Openings”

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. Continue reading “Mega Post! – Update, Mini Reviews, & More!”

Ghost in the Shell (2017) Film Review

Interesting Ideas; Mixed Results

d947b6bcdd3c2ac2f86e6b39bed43778Went and saw the new Ghost in the Shell movie with some friends and the movie felt pretty average. It was what you might expect from a Hollywood action film but still had nods to source material that made it feel somewhat unique compared to if the film was truly “Westernized.”

This write up will be a bit shorter, since I’m coming off the film fresh. In addition to my own thoughts, I’ll be providing the thoughts of the two people that went with me. It’ll be like getting 3 reviews in 1! Continue reading “Ghost in the Shell (2017) Film Review”

Ghost in the Shell (Pre-Film) Thoughts

Ghost in the Shell’s Live-Action Release is Right Around the Corner

So I thought it might be a good time to let you all know what my thoughts on the upcoming film are, my expectations, and familiarity with the franchise. This isn’t a sponsored article, but I’d like to quickly thank Crunchyroll for providing me with a free ticket to see this film and giving me an excuse to talk about a franchise I really enjoy. Continue reading “Ghost in the Shell (Pre-Film) Thoughts”

Wolf Children – My Favorite Anime Film & Why I Love it

Something a Little Different

This article is an adapted version of a script for an oral presentation that I will be giving for one of my business classes. I was tasked to discuss something I have a passion for, so I decided to talk about Wolf Children. The reason I decided to talk about this film is for the following reasons:

  • To challenge my class to explore a topic that they are unfamiliar with. Most members of the class haven’t even seen a Ghibli film, just as a frame of reference.
  • Wolf Children is universally relatable in its themes and ideas. The film is also in English (not that there is much dialog to begin with) which removes a barrier from my audience.
  • The film can be discussed without spoiling it. Additionally, Wolf Children requires no knowledge of anime tropes and conventions. End goal is to recommend the film.
  • I am genuinely passionate about anime (obviously) and wanted to talk about my favorite anime film.

Past that, there are a few guidelines for this article since it isn’t exactly the kind of thing I normally do. This isn’t strictly a review of Wolf Children, more just why I like it so much. I have to assume you don’t know squat about anime and keep the language a bit simpler than normal. There will be some video and images in the article to enhance readability that I am unable to include in my oral presentation (we aren’t allowed to use any media whatsoever). If you enjoy this sort of article and want to see more like it, let me know by leaving a like and comment saying so below. Enjoy! Continue reading “Wolf Children – My Favorite Anime Film & Why I Love it”