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  • Demon City Shinjuku (Anime) Review

    Demon City Shinjuku Anime Review

    demoncityshinjukubox
    Over the years I have watched Demon City Shinjuku a few times. Recently I decided to watch the movie again. I had forgotten how serene the movie can be and yet so violent at the same time. The movie takes through a ‘Pandora’s Box’ of today’s age.
    Demon City Shinjuku is a 1988 anime film directed by Yoshiaki Kawajiri based after a horror novel by Hideyuki Kikuchi.

     

    Demon City Shinjuku Plot

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    The film follows a young man named Kyoya Izayoi and his journey into the demonized Shinjuku area. During the opening of the film, a man named Genichirou and another named Rebi Ra are fighting on the rooftop of buildings. The two were once a students of a Nempo martial art user named Aguni Rai. Rebi Ra ends up killing Genichirou and letting loose a few demons into the Shinjuku area. Ten years pass by and Kyoya (son of Genichirou) is now left with the aftermath of his fathers failures. Rai asks Kyoya for help when the World President (Kozumi Rama) is attacked. Kyoya refuses at first but reluctantly goes when he finds out the World President’s daughter goes to Shinjuku to save her father. Kyoya ends up following out of guilt. The two are now in the dangerous zone of demons and must find a way to Rebi Ra and defeating him.

    I have watched the movie several times but only recently understood it better now that I am more mature. The story is not hard to follow, it’s just a little confusing. The scenes can change quickly, but it does so in a calm state. It’s nice due to some of the violent scenes it an have. Not that it is gruesome or very graphic, it had little graphic scenes. Those graphic scenes tend to be towards animals. The one thing I didn’t like about the movie. The plot was interesting, but not enough time was given for a lot of details.

     

    Demon City Shinjuku Characters

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    There are only a few characters in the movie that stand out.

    The main character Kyoya is your typical 80s anime male lead, acts nonchalant and has no real motive to save the world. But he does so anyways. I would say I liked his character, but again there was no time for a lot of development. Of course he does like women and that is why he saves the Presidents daughter. He is stronger than he looks as well.

    Sayaka Rama is the presidents daughter. To be honest she is basically just like Relena Peacecraft from Gundam Wing. She looks weak and scared, but is actually very strong willed and determined. Her character got a little annoying towards the end for some reason. She seemed to just do stuff without thinking sometimes and got into trouble which could have been avoided.

    Rebi Ra is a typical antagonist that wants power. He sold his soul to get stronger than Genichirou. Other than the opening and the last scene, he is rarely seen in the movie. That is a little frustrating because there could have been more. He was just a tool in the end.

    Mephisto and the unknown kid are two people who are actually trying to help Kyoya and Sayaka in Demon City Shinjuku. Mephisto is a quiet guy and just reminds me of Darkside from Darkside Blues. The kid is just atypical child about to turn into a teenage punk. These two are crucial to Kyoya finding Rebi Ra and the kid is even used against Kyoya by one of Rebi Ra’s demons to stop him.

    There are three demons in the movie that Kyoya and the group have to fight. The first one is your typical arachnid type demon. Looks big and strong but on the inside (literally) easy to take down. The second one is a roundish water demon. The third is a serpent type female demon that tries to use her sexuality to distract Mephisto. Honestly the enemies could have been better. They were taken down to quickly.

     

    Demon City Shinjuku Animation and Music

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    The animation was actually really clean for the times. It reminds of you any 80s anime from that time. The scenes are serene at times and even the music can draw you into them. The music really helps with keeping the plot calm and leaving little to be tense about. There honestly is no suspense in the movie due to the cut away scenes and the music. It looks like the director used Miyazaki’s technique of ‘ma’ (intentional emptiness).

     

    Demon City Shinjuku Overall

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    The movie does have some graphic scenes when you see an animal around. So do be aware of that please. There is also a little sexual scenes, but nothing serious. With that said, the movie is good if you just want to watch a quick movie and not think to much. There really is not that much dialogue. Overall I would say it’s good for the time it came out. If you wanted something more interesting I would say to read the novel or even the manga. The movie can leave you disappointed in the end when it comes to final fight as well.

     

    Overall Grade: 5/10


  • JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure 2012 (Anime) Review

    JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure 2012 Anime Review

     JoJo's Bizarre Adventure

    It’s time to delve into untold pages of forgotten history. We begin in England, the homeland of the most powerful empire of modern era. George Joestar returns from an expedition, of the ancient ruins from civilizations close to America, with an artifact. It was a stone mask. As the man returned home with his family, he was struck with a deadly accident.
    He mistook a thief as a savior and the man took advantage. Dario, the thief, knew a greater reward lay on the other side. Prepare to face a journey where the hideous creatures of the night rise from the dead. the start of an odyssey that will span for generations.

    This is the fabulous review of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventures 2012, a 26 episodes action horror shounen from… well guess what year. The anime is based on the legendary ongoing manga series with the same name by Hirohiko Araki, and specifically on the first two arcs of the series Phantom Blood (1-9) and Battle Tendency (10-26). We are analyzing this show according to animation, character, sound, story and personal enjoyment. Will the anime deserve a spot at the top of the world ? Let’s find this out

    Art of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure

    Score 8/10

     JoJo's Bizarre Adventure

    Jojo has seen a respectable array of adaptations of the first manga arcs during the 1990’s as a series of various ovas about Part 3 Stardust Crusaders (and one abhorrent movie from 2007 that never became a dvd about Phantom Blood). When it was announced a new and definitive Jojo project after such a long time the fans rejoiced all over the world. Animation is work of the very young yet promising David Production, this being their first major anime. The studio managed to put into life the old style art of master Araki, at the dawn of his career. The art is colorful and vibrant, the character design is really vast even though the exalted masculinity of male characters might not be of anyone’s liking. Action flows pretty well but unless you watch the uncut kissanime version then censorship and not so refined details may drop the score to 7.

     

     

    Characters of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure

    Score 9/10

     JoJo's Bizarre Adventure

    There is not really a specific need to examine the cast from Jojo 2012 unless you would like to be told “it’s freaking awesome” over and over again. As an old style anime Jojo started what will later be known as the modern shounen but nonetheless I have rarely seen such refreshingly captivating characters, old should not deter anyone from watching this, it was a revolution back in the day and it is now. The feature I appreciated the most is the meticulous personality and surprising development every character is given despite they are not psychological masterpieces but they don’t need it when their flavorful quirks and genius interactions dominate the whole series. Picking favorites will be your greatest delight during the whole run, situations and conversations reach emetic and legendary status.

    Soundtrack and Acting of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure

    Score 10/10

     JoJo's Bizarre Adventure

    When the angel of awesomeness graces mortals with his presence, he needs to be heralded by a horn that produces a majestic melody. This is how I would sum up Jojo’s soundtrack and acting aspects, in a few words we are talking of top tier goodness. The direction is from the master and veteran Taku Iwasaki, legendary compo ser of shows like Kuroshitsuji, Gurren Lagann and Soul Eater and his style finds the best way to be expressed in Jojo indeed.

    In collaboration with the Persona series rap artist Lotus Juice we have dubstep, modern electronic music to accompany the most stylish parts of the series but many other genres like latin style solemn music and powerful German choral compositions are present. The voicing acting is perfect, with veterans like Takehito Koyasu voicing our eccentric cast of characters. I also appreciated the quirk of having onomatopoeic sounds as if it was a manga.

     

    Story and Pacing of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure

    Score 8/10

     JoJo's Bizarre Adventure

    The franchise was conceived as a generational shounen series that would span entire eras of the modern times starting from 1800. The story does not focus on creating a convoluted and a purely twist based progression but it lets characters and their relationships do the job of weaving the gradual development of the storyline. This is a story about a group, a family, the show tends to focus on the wider scheme of the events rather than what happens to a restricted cast of characters. Everyone has a relevant part and everything may affect the future generations and therefore the future arcs. Even though we are talking about a very violent show, the series takes advantage of a wise use of parodic, black humorish almost nonsensical style. The show tends to highlight the honor, manliness and bravery from drama itself, certain situations are purposefully exaggerated to create a unique theatrical feeling that just screams.

    Personal Enjoyment

    Score 9/10

     JoJo's Bizarre Adventure

    We are at the end of our review and there is not really much to doubt at this point. To think that such a work existed in the simplistic and childish times of Dragon Ball makes me think of why the franchise took so long to finally reach a degree of notoriety in the west. Jojo uses style and flavour not as a device to reach a purpose as the purpose itself. Enjoy the fuckton of referances from the pop culture like movies, music artists and other professionists, the memetic poses of the series are indeed inspired by the years Araki served as a designer of clothing and other stylish stuff. This is the series that with its crazy characters and thoughtfully crafted action allowed your One Piece, your Naruto, your Hunter x Hunter, your Bleach to exist, the pioneer of the modern shounen that has never been surpassed

    P.S: I am usually not one to exalt or glorify this much long run action shounen series not being my favourite genre !

    Final Score 8.8/10

    Japanese manga and animu are the best in the world !

    See you in my next reviews my friends


  • Parasyte (Anime) Review

    Parasyte Anime Review

    Parasyte

    In the darkness of night, the world’s fate is changed forever as the survival of its apex predator is put to its ultimate test after thousands of undisputed years.

    A mysterious and deadly race of parasitic aliens land on our planet through their pods, hideously small creatures that sneak inside the human body and eat the brain taking control of its owner. A dreadful beginning which will mark the parasytes evolution path aimed at dethroning the human beings from their place as the dominant species on Earth. They lurk everywhere, in their new bodies feeding on that of other unaware victims as they become increasingly intelligent and dangerous. Our story starts when a parasyte that tries to take control of Shinichi Izumi, a 17 years old Japanese boy, fails to eat the brain and is stuck to co exist with our protagonist as his new hand…

    Welcome to Parasyte the MLG

    Strike Out !

    This is the monstrous review of Parasyte the Maxim, also known as Kiseijuu Sei no Kakuritsu, a 24 eps psychological horror seinen from 2015. The anime is an adaptation about the cult manga with the same name from the far 1988 by the mangaka Hitoshi Iwaaki, produced by the popular animation studio Madhouse. We are analyzing this show according to animation, characters, sound, story and personal enjoyment. Will this anime be crowned as the king of its species ? (in this case genre lol) let’s find this out !

     

    Art of Parasyte

    Score 8/10

    Parasyte

    Madhouse is gradually taking a place in my heart as the true and only savior of this dying industry. Once again the studio does not fail to deliver with its exquisite animation and production values. Parasyte is a unique case in the fact that this adaptation modernizes the setting of what is a manga from the late 80’s, character designs are altered to better suit the taste of the current generation. The manga may turn out to be creepier with its old school style but the anime is not devoid of surreal and nightmare inducing situations and characters you can surely take my word on that

    The action is amazing, not overly complicated but it manages to pump you up like few anime before, you feel the very rage and homicidal instinct behind any blow. Censorship is handled perfectly and is barely notable only in the most extreme and gorish scenes. If you do love freaky and disgusting stuff the score becomes 9 out of 10

    Characters of Parasyte

    Score 9/10

    Parasyte

    Development and not characterization, is the key word the whole show revolves around. For an anime whose Darwinian themes deal with the concept of species and evolution, it is quite symbolic to witness some of the most captivating, realistic and thought provoking character evolution in this modern industry. Yes the show has a number of not well explored characters as well but believe me when I say that one or two specific cases are enough to make this anime an academic case that people should analyze till their brains explode into bits.

    It’s very interesting how parasytes and humans are a foil to each other, so different yet sharing more similarities you could ever think of. The protagonist is one of the few of the “high school student” kind that I liked lately, boasting an immersive progression throughout the series. Shinichi grows up both in body and soul as a man in an unforgiving world.

    Soundtrack and Acting of Parasyte

    Score 9/10

    Parasyte

    Once again Madhouse provides his most hyped anime with an equally hyped and exceedingly thematic soundtrack. The show contains a pretty unique soundtrack made up of adrenaline inducing, fast pacing, metallic and electronic music, obsessive dubstep and ominous choruses, all of this arouses constant anxiety and an alarming sense of threats, the sense of “they are emotionless killers” is given by musical themes that at times give a very robotic, machine like feeling. The opening is death metal to its finest, chaotic yet addicting, it was purposefully made for the anime as its lyrics hold the profound and very beautiful meanings of the whole series. The acting is generally flawless and we have a veteran cast voicing our characters especially female ones, indeed it’s as if they decided to call the top 10 most amazing female seiyuu to join the party

    Story and Pacing of Parasyte

    Score 10/10

    Parasyte

    The series tends to not delve into aspects of the story such as the origins of the parasytes or the true nature of certain concepts, vaguely explained or left purposefully unexplained for the viewers to come up with their own theories and think. This lack of explicit answers is behind the very meaning of the whole show, and is symbolically expressed even its narration, covered with mystery, horror and cleverly crafted action. Pacing is near flawless, the series has rarely dead moments in the flow of the storyline and it does not take long before everything takes off.

    There is a perfect duality expressed by the objective, stern and logic parasytes and the emotional, irrational and ethical humans. The show tends to makes us ask, ponder and try to answer ourselves all the times, with dilemmas and themes to the point of reaching philosophical level. The confrontation between these two races, the dichotomy between “fact and opinion” is what made me put my mental energies into this series for days

    Personal Enjoyment

    Score 10/10

    Parasyte

    This show is like an anime form of the evolution path of human’s species under the point of view of another species. As the show progresses, we see how humans as the absolute predators react to the alien threat in an epic clash where we have no good and evil, just winners and losers. No matter what will cause the humans to die out they will not give up so easily, their determination and ability to discard their vilest instincts is what makes me proud of being human, what tells us apart from the rest.

    Behind that mask of flesh that protects our flawed ego, we are basically all the same, we were all given equal chance to pave our own path and reaching our own answers forging ourselves through experience. A fact is objectively immovable but an opinion, although sharing the same objective source, will never be the same between two entities, the product of our unique and inquisitive mind. Enjoy (or I hope you enjoyed) this anime and remember that we are gifted by just being born as human beings.


  • Ghost Hunt (Anime) Review

     

    Ghost Hunt Anime Review

    Ghost Hunt

    I think fear is an extremely interesting state of mind. It’s fascinating to experience and see what scares you and what doesn’t. It’s that wide variety offered in the horror genre that makes it so popular and prominent in entertainment. However when it comes to horror in anime, it isn’t really its forte, and I think that it’s mainly due to the very similar nature of a large majority of them. With heavy emphasis on gore and grizzly death scenes, a lot of necessary elements to making a good horror takes a backseat. Now of course, in no way shape or form does that mean that the shows are bad or not worth your time, but it does mean that for some people it isn’t going to be the horror experience that they were looking for.
    Having watched many horror anime, I can wholeheartedly say that these shows are really more uncomfortable to watch than they are scary. However discomfort is only one aspect out of many. I personally believe that if a horror anime is only able to make you feel one thing from a state of mind with a huge array of encompassing aspects other than discomfort, it isn’t a good horror anime.
    However over the years I have been fortunate enough to experience some horror anime that isn’t necessarily bad, and the one that I’ll be reviewing for you today is,Ghost Hunt. This show originally started airing back in October of 2006, and finished airing in March of 2007. It’s a light novel adaptation with animation done by Studio J.C.Staff. So after two complete recent viewings, here is my review for Ghost Hunt.

    Story of Ghost Hunt

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    The story follows a first year high school student named Taniyama Mai who ends up getting involved with Shibuya Kazuya, the president of the Shibuya Psychic Research Company. While Kazuya was conducting an investigation on her school’s abandoned building, Mai ends up interfering and after a series of unfortunate events,Kazuya hires Mai to be his assistant to make up for the damage she caused. Thus begins the ghost hunting adventures.
    First let’s start with the good. The story is presented in the form of arcs. Each arc lasting between three to six episodes. Each arc covers a specific investigation that our characters are assigned. These arcs can be really hit or miss. They can either be extremely creepy, unnerving, and scary, or just extremely boring. However the way that they pace each arc, for the most part, is well executed. The slow and tense buildup is paced well and offers us insight into what exactly our characters are up against, but not to the point where we know exactly what they’re dealing with. An extremely interesting element that the show has to offer is that it isn’t completely grounded in reality. Because of this, during the initial exposition of each arc there’s this sense of mystery to what the characters are actually dealing with, and it helps add a layer of suspense that would otherwise not be there. The show also likes to include tools, procedures, and jargon used by “real” ghost hunters. This helps mask this element of the over the top supernatural elements of the show. It bounces back between this facade of being accurate, and being more akin to a fairy tale.
    Ghost Hunt
    When the story of each arc really starts to pickup and we start seeing unnatural things happen, the order in which we receive this information is done well. There is this smooth sense of gradual growth. We aren’t thrown straight into the thick of things, rather we see the little clues, and small conversations slowly build into a worsening problem until we reach the climax. It is indeed formulaic but it’s effective and gets the job done when it’s done right.
    Regardless of these good elements the show has multiple notable flaws in it’s story. The first major problem is that the show attempts to mesh genre’s that don’t mix well together. It shoves in this pointless shoujo element that feels extremely jarring to watch and experience. The fundamental flaw in this is the fact that the romantic tension, and over the top character drama can really take you out of the horror experience that the show is supposed to be offering you. Other than that, there lies another problem in a few of the shows arcs.
    Some of these arcs are downright boring. The reason is because a lot of the investigations prior to these are far better paced and introduced, and to a greater extent, the stakes are far higher making it seem like the story is moving backwards rather than
    forwards. Watching through these arcs is extremely daunting. The pacing is too slow or too fast, the characters become utterly stupid for some reason doing things that they would normally never do, and the conclusion to these arcs are unsatisfying or feel undeserved.
    For the most part the show is able to offer moments of terror and discomfort whether it be through imagery, it’s dialogue or the decent pacing. However there are multiple issues that really prevent the story from being the best that it could have been.

    Characters of Ghost Hunt

    Mai Ghost Hunt

    The characters in this show are at best serviceable and I think that it’s one of the shows weakest points. Starting with our female protagonist, Taniyama Mai, she’s extremely unlikeable as a lead, but because she’s painted as the innocent girl who wants to do good, we can get behind her basic ideals. But that’s really the extent of her likeability. She falls into a category of female leads that come off as extremely preachy, and sometimes you actually begin to get annoyed with her as there are moments where you think to yourself, “are you seriously thinking about that in this current situation?”, and it’s moments like this that really take you out of the experience. Along with that, it never seems like she grows as a useful character. We do get to see her become more accustomed to certain things, but she ultimately ends up still being underused and pointless. It feels as if she was only included to satisfy the shoujo aspect of the show, which strengthens my point that she’s is practically a useless character.
    Kazuya Ghost Hunt
    The male protagonist of the show is Shibuya Kazuya. He is leagues better than Mai as a character. Although he does have the typical archetype of super smart, quiet, cool guy, there are hints that there are layers to him, as we learn more about who he is and why he does what he does. But to my disappointment, any resemblance of this character plot point developing is immediately eradicated as it’s hardly ever touched on again. Conclusively this makes the character two dimensional and stale, and considering that he is a lead character, it’s unacceptable.
    Ghost Hunt
    As for the side characters, they too are simply just okay. I will say that the diversity of the cast is nice to see. You don’t have to deal with all the characters having similar personalities. However the major flaw with these characters is that they’re simply there because they have one part to play in the arc of the story. Even then they’re only used to either worsen the problem, or lighten the mood. They’re relationships, backstories, and overall personalities are non-existen. They simply rely on the extremely generic moral code and belief that they are the good guys to garner some sort of sympathy from the viewer.
    Ultimately you only care enough about them to fear for them in moments of peril but at the same time you aren’t able to really get attached to them. It’s almost as if the writers couldn’t be bothered to expand and flesh these characters out after they were given a brief introduction. It’s because of this lack of care and attention given to these characters that a lot of the arcs in the show are poorly done. Writers can’t simply come up with a story and fill it with uninteresting and poorly written characters and hope for the best. A story with terrible characters will simply amalgamate into a show with terribly written characters and an equally terrible story.

    Art and Directing of Ghost Hunt

    Ghost Hunt
    This is by far the best aspect of this anime. The bland and dark color palette thatthey chose to go with really helps add to the atmosphere of the show. There are some scenes where they use the darker colors to their advantage. The actual use of the color in combination with the art makes for a sleek looking show. The character designs look appealing, albeit some of them look like they were pulled straight out of a 1980’s romance shoujo manga.
    The interesting thing about the way that many scenes were directed and drawn is that they harken back to the very basic art of horror. Not showing what we should fear. There are multiple moments in the show where because of a certain way the frame was positioned or drawn really helped to emphasize the anxiety, the fear, and discomfort.
    Without giving away too much, there is a scene that is shown from the perspective of a fallen camera, and what we get is an extremely tight shot where very little is visible until we see the decapitated head of a doll. It’s directing like this that really helps make up for a lot of the issues this show has.
    I didn’t have any major problems with the art with the exception of Mai’s character design. Compared to the other characters having a sleek and stylized design, she looks completely out of place, with her awkward body proportions and over the top facial animations. She sticks out like a sore thumb and really breaks the continuity of the overall art.

    Music and Sound of Ghost Hunt

    Ghost Hunt
    Another aspect that this show does extremely well. The music is exceptional. It offers fantastic atmospheric and tension building melodies that really keep you engaged in scenes that need you to be. Even the opening song isn’t your typical J-Rock or J-Pop song to get you hyped for the episode, rather it’s this eerie yet bombastic piece with opera like vocals to accompany it. To be completely honest, I found the opening song to be scarier than some of the actual “scary” scenes in this anime.
    As for the sound design, it’s okay. There’s nothing too special in this anime that sticks out. I mean I’m not gonna say “wow the sound the of that cup shattering was really well done”. They’re creepy enough to help certain scenes but other than that it’s nothing too special.
    Voice acting wise, it was okay as well. I am basing this off the Japanese dub, so keep that in mind. With the voice actors for Kazuya, and side characters, Takigawa Houshou and Ayako Matsuzaki being the ones to standout amongst the rest. All the other voices seemed bland and uninteresting, or too over the top and awkward to listen to. It’s like the voice actors and actresses were either falling asleep, or trying to make do with an extremely lackluster script.

    Final Verdict of Ghost Hunt

    Ghost Hunt

    Ghost Hunt is a show plagued by many problems. Ranging from it’s poorly written story arcs and characters. But the thing is fear is very subjective. What one person finds terrifying might be something someone else might not have a problem with. With that in mind the individual experience a person might have with this show is going to vastly differ from that of another persons.
    However despite it’s major flaws, I enjoyed this show. Even though I’m convinced that the writers were purposefully writing Mai to be a contender for “Worst Character of The Year” back in 2006, I can’t deny that I had fun with this show. The fact that this show is episodic to a certain extent it makes it possible to pick and choose what stories you want to watch, and I highly suggest going about watching this show that way. The fact that they aren’t just dealing with “ghosts” also broke up the monotony of the repetitive storyline in the specific arcs. In these different moments I hope that if you choose to watch this show, that it offers enough to satisfy your need for horror.
    Are there better horror anime out there? Oh hell yeah. Still, this is a show that was extremely overlooked and is considered to be a hidden gem by many in the anime community. If you can get past the major problems of this show and simply watch it to experience some decent horror in anime, I’d say give it a go.
    This isn’t a show that you need to go out of your way to watch, and you may never get it to it. You might even completely ignore the fact that this show exists. Therefore my final rating for the show is: “Backlog It”
    SUPER SHORT REVIEW
    Story: Meh
    Characters: OH GOD NO!
    Art: Aye, that’s pretty good.
    Sound: I like that Sh*t
    Voice Acting: Meh
    Overall: “BACKLOG IT”

     


  • Tokyo Ghoul (Anime) Review

    Tokyo Ghoul Anime Review

    Tokyo Ghoul

    ʏᴏᴜ ᴅᴏ ғᴇᴀʀ ᴛʜᴇᴍ

    ʏᴏᴜ ᴀsᴋ ᴡʜᴀᴛ ᴛʜᴏsᴇ ɢʜᴏᴜʟs ᴀʀᴇ

    ʏᴏᴜ ᴄᴀʟʟ ᴛʜᴇᴍ ᴍᴏɴsᴛᴇʀs

    ᴛʜᴇ ᴀɴsᴡᴇʀ ɪs sɪᴍᴘʟᴇ

    ᴊᴜsᴛ ᴛᴇʟʟ ᴍᴇ ᴡʜᴀᴛ ᴛʜᴇʏ ᴇᴀᴛ

    ᴀɴᴅ ɪ’ʟʟ ᴛᴇʟʟ ʏᴏᴜ

    ᴡʜᴀᴛ ᴛʜᴇʏ ᴀʀᴇ

    ɢᴀɴɢs ᴀɴᴅ ʏᴀᴋᴜᴢᴀ ᴀʀᴇ ɴᴏ ʟᴏɴɢᴇʀ ᴛʜᴇ ᴍᴏsᴛ ᴅᴀɴɢᴇʀᴏᴜs ᴛʜʀᴇᴀᴛ ʏᴏᴜ ᴄᴀɴ ᴄᴏᴍᴇ

    ᴀᴄʀᴏss ɪɴ ᴛᴏᴋʏᴏ’s sᴛʀᴇᴇᴛs. ᴀ ᴍʏsᴛᴇʀɪᴏᴜs

    ʀᴀᴄᴇ ᴏғ ʜᴜᴍᴀɴ ʟɪᴋᴇ sᴜᴘᴇʀɴᴀᴛᴜʀᴀʟ ʙᴇɪɴɢs ʜᴀs ᴇsᴛᴀʙʟɪsʜᴇᴅ ɪᴛs ᴏᴡɴ ᴍɪᴄʀᴏ sᴏᴄɪᴇᴛʏ ɪɴ ᴛʜᴇ ᴊᴀᴘᴀɴᴇsᴇ ᴄᴀᴘɪᴛᴏʟ, ᴛʜᴇʏ ᴀʀᴇ ‘ɢʜᴏᴜʟs’. ᴘʜʏsɪᴄᴀʟʟʏ ʟᴏᴏᴋɪɴɢ ᴛʜᴇ sᴀᴍᴇ ᴀs ᴛʜᴇ ʀᴇɢᴜʟᴀʀ ʜᴜᴍᴀɴs, ɢʜᴏᴜʟs ʜᴀᴠᴇ ᴀ ᴜɴɪǫᴜᴇ ʙᴏᴅʏ sᴛʀᴜᴄᴛᴜʀᴇ ᴛʜᴀᴛ ᴍᴀᴋᴇ ᴛʜᴇɪʀ sᴋɪɴ ʜᴀʀᴅ ᴀs sᴛᴇᴇʟ, ɢʀᴀɴᴛɪɴɢ ᴛʜᴇᴍ sᴜᴘᴇʀ sᴛʀᴇɴɢᴛʜ ʙᴜᴛ ғᴏʀᴄɪɴɢ ᴛʜᴇᴍ ᴛᴏ ᴇᴀᴛ ᴀɴᴅ ᴅɪɢᴇsᴛ ɴᴏᴛʜɪɴɢ ʙᴜᴛ ʜᴜᴍᴀɴ ғʟᴇsʜ. ᴡᴇ ᴡɪʟʟ ғᴏʟʟᴏᴡ ᴋᴀɴᴇᴋɪ ᴋᴇɴ, ᴀ ʏᴏᴜɴɢ ᴍᴀɴ ᴛʜᴀᴛ ʟᴇᴀᴅs ᴀ ᴘᴇᴀᴄᴇғᴜʟ ʟɪғᴇ ᴀs ᴀ ɴᴏʀᴍᴀʟ sᴛᴜᴅᴇɴᴛ, ɢᴏɪɴɢ ᴏᴜᴛ ᴡɪᴛʜ ʜɪs ɴᴇᴡ ɢɪʀʟғʀɪᴇɴᴅ ғᴏʀ ᴛʜᴇ ғɪʀsᴛ ᴛɪᴍᴇ, ᴀ ᴅᴀᴛᴇ ᴡɪᴛʜ ғᴀᴛᴇ ᴛʜᴀᴛ ᴡɪʟʟ ᴄʜᴀɴɢᴇ ʜɪs ʟɪғᴇ ɪɴᴛᴏ ᴏɴᴇ ᴏғ ᴄʜᴀᴏs ᴀɴᴅ ʜᴏʀʀᴏʀ

    This is the monstrous review of Tokyo Ghoul, a psychological horror anime from 2014 based on the popular seinen manga with the same of Sui Ishida. I remind you that this review will only exclusively cover the first season that aired last year. I’m going to analyze this according to Graphics, Characters, Sound, Plot and Personal Enjoyment.

    Art and Animation of Tokyo Ghoul

    Score 8/10

    Tokyo Ghoul

    The anime was produced by Studio Pierrot, a highly popular studio that produced many mainstream shounen series offering an unsteady visual quality (still having nightmares from Naruto vs Pain battle). Tokyo Ghoul is one of those series they would not dare to mess up and it indeed has a fine and sleek animation that shines during the intense battles and extremely violent scenes throughout the run. While the setting and characters are the stereotypical ones belonging to a modern era, the trait is pleasant to look at and the Kagune, the Ghoul’s appendages, are a flavorful and artistic feature to the franchise.

    Characters of Tokyo Ghoul

    Score 6/10

    Tokyo Ghoul

    I’m quite familiar with this genre of works in the anime industry and the show follows the typical stereotypes concerning characters and situations of the horror genre but don’t think it’s actually inherently horrible. The characters do not shine because of development or complicated characterization but they work for what they were intended to. It’s surely one of those shows where the secondary characters are the main attraction and most interesting members of the cast. Even though we have some valid element among the protagonists, the show suffers from not so optimal use of the great number of characters and the protagonist Kaneki is a punch bag almost all the time

    Soundtrack and Acting Of Tokyo Ghoul

    Score 8/10

    Tokyo Ghoul

    The opening is unquestionably the most popular one from 2014 (it boasts over 12 million views on youtube in one video) but I was not that captived by it so it’s passable, not amazing but not horrible, just average. The soundtrack merely serves as a way to provide with a background support to the various scenes, that due to the highly grim and intense nature of the show it serves its job to build up the tension but nothing too memorable. What gets most of this score is the Japanese acting, even though we have some popular voice I occasionally had shivers down my spine for how realistic and heart felt the acting was, especially during violent, painful scenes, those screams and cries cannot pass unnoticed

    Story and Pacing of Tokyo Ghoul

    Score 7/10

     

    Tokyo Ghoul can boast a nicely crafted dark fantasy world that sees the duality between humans and ghouls. This is a seinen and I did expect more than just shounen like (yet spectacular) battles. At the beginning we have the protagonist Kaneki dealing with the realization to not be a human anymore, to have become a flesh feeding creature that acts with homicidal instinct. We see how Tokyo is divided in various territories each led by groups of Ghouls, this whole territorial competition and dichotomy between “I am a human” and “I am a ghoul” is never really fully explored, this would make the show more complete.

    The pacing works but it is mostly characters doing things for most of it, the actual story flows slowly but it knows how to “mask” these flaws very well. I did not quite loved how it occasionally turned violence to genuine and exaggerated torture porn

    Personal Enjoyment of Tokyo Ghoul

    Score 7/10

    Tokyo Ghoul

    I’m really sorry for disappointing all those who believed me to enter the Tokyo Ghoul hate club cause I’m not in there. It’s quite obvious how the series is overrated or rather over popular for what it actually offers. The show does have all elements an anime needs to become the next Attack on Titan in terms of popularity, in this sense this is a show that clearly does not make me astonished at how it is so mainstream and I must admit I quite enjoyed it even though it has evident flaws and holes. Second season has not ended yet and I have yet to watch it and read the manga cause I’m actually intrigued to see how things will continue.

    It’s not the most original work in the world but it’s a lie if one says that it does not offer a bit of personality and entertainment that’s for sure.

    Final Score 7.0/10


  • Tokyo Ghoul (Anime Season 1) Review

    Tokyo Ghoul (Season 1) Anime Review

    DISCLAIMER: this review contains spoilers so only read ahead if you’ve seen it or you don’t care. Also this review is of season one only.

    Based on the manga of the same name, Tokyo Ghoul is produced by Studio Pierrot, a studio that makes the long-running shows Naruto and Bleach. The story centres around a human student named Kaneki Ken, who falls victim a binge-eating ghoul named Rize. However in an unexpected turn of events Rize is killed and in order to save Kaneki, her organs are transferred into him. Although not executed supremely well, I thought the overall concept here was a really interesting and didn’t fall into the pitfall of a generic vampire-like story.

    This all happens in the first couple of episodes, and they are actually the best episodes of the entire season. One thing that Tokyo Ghoul struggled to do in my opinion was maintain the themes and tone that this introduction sets up. What was initially a internal psychological war within Kaneki is somewhat lost, and the focus drifts away from this for a large remainder of the show, except in places where the plot conveniently demands it.

    The tone during the overall season felt inconsistent. At points it was this deep wrenching psychological thriller and then at other points it felt like I was watching a slice of life anime. While the altering tempo wasn’t as jagged as in something like Akame ga Kill, it still felt like the writers was slightly confused about what genre they were writing at points.

     

    Tokyo Ghoul Characters

    The characterizations in Tokyo Ghoul were hit and miss for me. Some of the characters were brilliant: the Gourmet was one of the best villains I have seen in an anime. His design fully suited his personality, he was utterly insane but his goals made sense in their own twisted way (which is what you want from a villain).

    Touka was almost certainly the best main character in the show. She is a strong female lead which is something which I feel isn’t always seen enough in anime, and you truly see a metamorphosis in her character from being cold and heartless to becoming reluctantly fond of Kaneki and Hinami.

    The side characters were dealt with averagely, with some of them (for example Hinami, her mother, and the Doves) feeling fully fleshed out, while others felt more like filler characters and plot leverage for the main characters to bounce off of (such as Kaneki’s friend Hide, or Nishiki and his human girlfriend). As there is so little time spent with these characters we don’t learn to empathise with how other characters feel about them. This is a shame because it feels like wasted potential.

    On the other side of the spectrum is Kaneki, who whilst he isn’t the worst main character I’ve ever seen, he is still unremarkably boring. Aside from the ghoul transformation at the start of the show, we see almost no change in him at all until about 3 minutes from the end of the last episode. And for a show which seems to try and put a focus on characters so much it doesn’t really do much for me.

    Tokyo Ghoul Animation and Sound

    The art, animation, and sound in Tokyo Ghoul are good. Whilst they aren’t going to win any awards, they are sufficiently good enough to do the show justice. The setting and characters all look nice (and appropriate to their personality), and the animation is pretty smooth and doesn’t dip in quality anywhere which is good. Aside from the main theme song which is awesome, the sound isn’t especially noteworthy but the sound engineers did a good job of realizing that sometimes silence has a better effect than music in some scenes of tension or exposition.
    So to conclude, Tokyo Ghoul has its flaws but is still worth your time to watch. While there are issues with tone and some characters, the overarching story is enough to keep you invested until the end.

     

    Score: 7/10

    Verdict: Watch it

    Recommended Similar Shows: Parasyte, Another, Elfen Lied

    Review by MrA


  • Hellsing Ultimate (Anime) Review

    Hellsing Ultimate Anime Review

    Hellsing Ultimate

    The Bird of Hermes
    Is My Name
    Eating My Wings
    To Make Me Tame

    Do you know the tale of the no life king? A ruler living in the darkest part of Europe during the middle ages? He was a man that killed over 10,000 of his citizens and impaled them at the border of his own kingdom to scare off the far stronger invader… Yes he was both genius and bloody. He was the impaler, Dracul. He entered the legend as the Lord of Vampires, the most legendary of his kind. According to the tale, he was killed by a vampire hunter. I’ll tell you what really happened, indeed, the no life king was tamed. He was made a weapon at the disposal of mankind. Humans are weak, they perish quickly and both their soul and body are fragile. Quite inefficient as hunters of those godforsaken creatures. Centuries after the defeat of Dracula, Hellsing organization releases its greatest warrior, Alucard, to fight vampires throughout the British nation. A domesticated vampire of the first class…

    What follows is my unholy review of Hellsing Ultimate an ova series of 10 movies that was released in the span of almost a decade. It’s the complete adaptation of the horror manga by Kota Hirano with the same name. This review will also compare this to the original TV series from time to time in order to clear any doubts. It’s also important to tell people that a mini prequel series called Hellsing the Dawn also exists but it will not be taken into account for this review. The review will analyze the series according to graphic, characters, sound, story and personal enjoyment

     

    Art and Animation of Hellsing Ultimate

    Score 9/10

    Hellsing Ultimate

    The project was born as the ultimate adaptation of Hellsing after the end of its glorious run in 2008. As an ova series (and by Madhouse one of the best studios out there) the show boasts a near flawless animation that it’s been out of the league of many anime since the first movie came out. The art is dirty and messy, a perfect stylistic choice to better portray the general vibe of madness this series has. Indeed we’re talking about one of the most graphically violent and gory shows of the new millennium (no pun intended). This series overall packs an amazing comport of visual awesomeness and it’s one of the most ambitious works in this industry.

     

    Characters of Hellsing Ultimate

    Score 9/10

    Hellsing Ultimate

    I wonder what a series would be without a loveable cast of flavorful characters? Yes Hellsing ultimately (again no pun intended) does not fail to deliver one of the most interesting set of characters in anime history. Even though we cannot talk of absolute originality or insane psychological profiles (for example Alucard is based on Vincent Valentine from FFVII) we can’t deny how Kouta Hirano created a charismatic protagonist that is everything but the emblem of the hero. He is neither good nor bad, he just does whatever he wants and he is always the best at what he does (maybe even too faultless).

    Character design is not too impressive with the exception of the awesome Alucard, the titular protagonist, but everything works perfectly in the context of the series. The secondary characters are well managed like Seras (who was more like the protagonist in the original Hellsing anime), Rip, Walter, Integra and my favorites Pip and the Major.

     

    Soundtrack and Acting of Hellsing Ultimate

    Score 8/10

    Hellsing Ultimate

    We’re not talking about a series that aims at using its musical score as a major (ok I’ll stop it with the puns) point of interest that’s for sure. You want awesomeness but this does not mean that Hellsing fails at the sound aspect quite the opposite lately. The original soundtrack works well as a background music and there are a few selected iconic tracks (like Gradius Vita) that make scenes overflowing with epicness and tension. Many genres from pop to solemn choral music are used. One thing that the original anime did well was the ost and its opening is one of the most iconic ones out there. Unfortunately for Hellsing Ultimate no tv series means no opening, but I advise you to watch all endings cause they are neat amvs of the back stories of many characters in the series. The voice acting earns this most of its score, many know how I am no fan of the dubbing but this time I can’t say anything. Alucard is a magnificent Crispin Freeman. Nonetheless the original Japanese subtitle is still superior because of Freeman’s Japanese equivalent Jouji Nakata.

     

    Story and Pacing of Hellsing Ultimate

    Score 8/10

    Hellsing Ultimate

    I cannot say this is a story driven series because it lets the characters, the setting and the events speak for themselves in a formula that never fails to disappoint. I do not mean that it has no story. It may be simple but surprisingly effective and thematic. In a hollywood fashion we see a mix of all that stuff, from movies or dark fantasy from nazi vampires to warewolves and the modern context, only makes it even more enjoyable and unique. The progression is linear and the storyline is enriched by the addition of every new character, each of them serves an important purpose in the greater scheme of the events.

    The pacing is excellent, maybe even too fast due to the fact it’s adapting a not so short manga in less than one hour ovas. The action is focused on giving the viewer a mix between excitement and disgust as it should be. It massively improves what made the original series miserably fail, a complete and logical storyline that has no filler and far better coherent characters and situations. Even though I liked the occasional humour, it is sometimes inopportune and anti climatic.

     

    Personal Enjoyment of Hellsing Ultimate

    Score 9/10

    Hellsing Ultimate

    Who can’t deny this was one hell(sing) of a ride? oh I forgot to stop the puns… Jokes aside, we are talking about a very valid product and one of the most important horror seinen you can find. There are clear inspirations to works of the past, especially with Jojo’s Bizarre Adventures the legendary series whose certain elements resemble closely some of the plot points of Hellsing Ultimate. Even though the two have a similar black humour style, Hellsing is surely one step beyond in terms of controversial and morally questionable content so I warned you, it may offend your sensibility.

    It’s nothing to be worried about, merely a tribute to an older series with similar genre. Take your time into analyzing the various themes in the series, the meaning of human, monster, religion, pride and soul. There is also a certain remarkable complexity regarding the ethics and worth of being what you are, even in your weakness and faults. Stay what you are or you might lose yourself in the process of changing, good and evil are not absolute.

    Final Score 8.5/10

    – Humble Reaper from Anime Amino, Italy (Sicily)


  • Tokyo Ghoul (Anime) Review

    Tokyo Ghoul Anime Review

    Tokyo Ghoul

    Tokyo Ghoul Season 1 (Incomplete)

    (Warning this review may contain slight spoilers/ series is not complete as of now)

    When you hear the word anime and monster in the same sentence of a review what do you think? It’s going to be another story about a group of teens or something that go out and hunt monster to try and save the world. This is a very common kind of anime scenario but one thing that we never think about is what it’s like for these monsters that they must hunt. Do these monsters truly have a life of their own or are they just beast trying to eat. Tokyo Ghoul is an anime that shows fresh insight for in this anime we see what is like to be the monsters that are being hunted. What there life is like, what they must do to survive. This anime is going to show you a view of the world that you would not usually see in anime. Now on to the actual review.

     

    Plot of Tokyo Ghoul

    Tokyo Ghoul

    Tokyo Ghoul is the story of a young man named Ken Keneki who was always loved reading books ever since his father died and left a whole room of books that he could read. One day while talking to his friend Hideyoshi (Hide) he spies most beautiful girl from across the café. He eventually gets the courage to ask her out on a date and she agrees to go out with him. He thought that he met the girl of his dream until he noticed something this girl wasn’t just a girl, she was a monster known as a ghoul. He was astonished that this girl that he loved so much was a ghoul and was going to kill him until an accident dropped many steel beams all over Keneki and her. While he was being operated on he could only hear the faint words of the doctors as they agree to take her organs and use them on his body. The surgery was a success but it can at a big cost. Keneki was no longer human but he also wasn’t a ghoul. He was now thrown into the middle of two worlds, one of them a world of monster and one a world of humans. He later meets a group of people who are ghoul that want to help him adjust to this strange new world that he has been thrown into but can he handle this or will he be killed along the way.

    Tokyo Ghoul

    There are many things that ghoul must do to try and co-exist with us humans. One thing is that Ghoul cannot handle eating any kind of human food except for coffee. The taste of human food is the most disgusting taste you can imagine times 10 and not only does it taste horrible but it will cause the ghoul to become very sick if he or she actually eats any of our food. They cannot just eat anything around humans because that would make them look really suspicious and would get them caught easily. They have found a way to fake it so that it looks like they are eating food but they are only forcing the food down there throat without tasting it so that they can later puke the food up before they actually began digesting it. They however love coffee, which is the only thing that they can share with humans.  Some Ghoul wear masks while they hunt for humans so that they can be found easily on the streets, while some ghoul cannot even stand the idea of killing a human so they find other ways to feed their appetite for flesh.

    Tokyo Ghoul

    I first began watching this anime after I finished watching the anime claymore and wanted something action packed and filled with gore. I had heard plenty of stuff and seen many facebook pictures about this anime but never felt any real reason to watch this anime but I am glad that I took the chance and watched it. It only has one season out right now but I would give this anime 4.5 stars out of 5 for its original look into the lives of creatures who must try and exist the same as we do.

    – Review by GaryTheOtaku