Sunday, August 30, 2015

Shoujo Manga for Men?? Monthly Girls' Nozaki-kun Anime Review

Here’s another romantic comedy anime I’ve watched very quickly (for some reason I’m watching a lot of these lately, must be the sadness of a tough breakup), yet again, it’s another one not completely aimed towards women, I think men will enjoy it as well (actually to be honest, in some ways I think it’s more directed towards male audiences than to female ones).

The main story focus around a girl named Chiyo, who is in love with a mangaka of Shoujo Manga named Nozaki, and her inability to properly express her feelings towards him(and his oblivious nature to everything around him regarding love matters, even though when love is actually what he portrays all the time in his manga works).

Chiyo is a cutiepie

During the course of the series, Chiyo becomes his assistant, and hopes to get closer with him to the point where she’d be able to confess to him properly what she feels. Meanwhile, we get introduced to other characters, such as the other assistants, and their romantic interests. Everyone with issues of their own, and very accentuated personalities and character traits.

Weirdos. Weirdos everywhere

It feels reminiscent of School Rumble in its themes, but a lot more muted and soft. It’s definitely not as wild, and sadly not as funny (most of the comedy revolves around the same type of gag, mostly due to the odd personalities of the characters), but it is entertaining and very watchable. I found myself watching a few episodes at a time since they were really easygoing(if that makes any sense – but in order to explain a bit in more detail: I mean they don’t make you think too hard, there is no really complex drama going on or conflict. Everyone is pretty much on the same side. Basically a slice of life who’s ultimate objective is to make its viewers smile).

The same gag over and over again. Gets old.

Sometimes it becomes very predictable as Nozaki’s ability to see what is really going on around him (the same could be said about other characters), and it kind of goes nowhere in character development really, so in that sense it is quite disappointing (specially the ending).

You should watch if:

If you were looking for other anime about mangaka’s and their work (as it was what I was looking for coming after finishing Bakuman).

Friday, August 28, 2015

Anime about making anime - Shirobako Anime TV series Review

This was an interesting little anime (2 seasons) about an anime studio in japan. 

Being a game developer, I definitely could feel empathy and connection with the issues and perks about working in the entertainment industry. 

 The series start with a promise between 5 girls that they will all work in an anime production company to one day direct an animated motion picture of the short movie did they at the end of college.

Producers at Work

The series then focus on each one of them and their job, since each one has a different skill-set (one’s a producer, an animator, a voice artist, a CG Artist, and a screenplay writer).

Me if i was a cute japanese CG Artist.

It’s very interesting to see how each one of them is able to get a job in the animation industry (sometimes starting by doing something almost unrelated such as looking for references for the story/animation team), the difficulties on getting a job, Stable/boring jobs versus less paid but more fulfilling experiences (specially this one I believe is very true in the games industry), and also, how things can go wrong in planning, why crunch happens, what difficulties are there between production and the directors, series based on pre-existing material versus original projects, sacrifices people do daily on their personal lives and so on.

We are going to need 3000 more man hours to finish this project!!

I thought it was definitely very interesting to know about how animes are made in Japan, and the resonance it has with the industry I work in. So if you are curious about these topics, you should check it out. It’s not amazingly written or very deep, but it is definitely entertaining enough and never felt boring.

You should watch it if:

You are interested in knowing more about anime production or the entertainment industry in general. 

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Thickest eyebrows in anime history - Ore no Monogatari aka My love story Review

I can't say i usually watch Shoujo anime or manga, but I watched this one since it was in the list of similar shows to Bakuman.

So fa I've watched 21 episodes(the first 12 in one sitting, which is quite a lot for me). It manages to be quite entertaining for guys (as i am assuming it is also for girls), and I really appreciate the fact it doesn't beat around the bush and doesn't spend too much time with some (unfortunately usual) anime/manga drama of the main characters being misunderstood or too shy to actually develop the story quickly. Things do happen and with the right speed. Which means the storyteller is able to invest all the extra time creating new-unseen situations that are usually handled in a very realistic, and most of the time, interesting way.

Reminds me of a small classmate girl I had in Highschool who was dating this super tall guy. These things do exist.
Most of the characters are unusually well developed and deep in this series, which is a win win situation. I was really surprised to see some of the minor characters get a lot of attention, and the main 3 being really well-thought and evolving. There are some funny moments (namely with Suna) that i found myself laughing quite a bit, which is very interesting as I thought at the beginning he wasn't going to be one of the likable characters for me, but he actually won me over without changing his personality at all. 
Someone will have nightmares over this.
One minor annoyance however, is Takeo's constant inner voice saying "I love you" constantly over the episodes, which becomes old really fast, and quite annoying on later episodes. anyways.

Rinka is really cute. Even for anime standards.
If you are in the mood to watch a romantic comedy, by all means check it out. It's no masterpiece. but it's quite nice and entertaining.

You should watch it if:

You are looking for a good and original romantic comedy, with unexpected sincerity in the themes it touches, with realistic characters(well, not all of them, but emotionally they are all quite realistic) and good character development in general.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Brutal manga about an amusement park inside a prision - Deadman Wonderland Manga Review

I just finished reading Deadman Wonderland Manga. It was pretty good! I own 10 of a total of 12(or maybe 13?) books(the last ones are still unreleased in US soil) and I have to say, it was a slow start, but then it gets more and more interesting. It is by no means an amazing manga, but it is definitely quite nice once all the pieces are in place.

Cute girl tries to kill you. What should you do?

I also need to commend the art, as it's really good(illustrated by the same guy who did Eureka Seven manga: Kazuma Kondou, definitely a very recognizable style, i immediately noticed it wass him.) The characters are extremely expressive and their emotions coming throught the drawings are a joy to watch.

Beautiful Art

The manga follows the story of a boy named Ganta, and of a girl named Shiro(reminiscent of Nyu/Lucy in Elfen Lied, but to avoid spoilers let's leave it at that) whose fate's are intertwined by secrets of the past. After being wrongly accused of a massacre, Ganta is imprisoned in a place named Deadman Wonderland, where he will need to fight other people like him(deadman) in order to survive.
Yes there is.

The series kinda follows some of the old prison movies themes, where people get collars on their neck and they need to behave well or get points in order not to be executed by those collars. It starts out with a kinda very standard revenge premise, but then it develops into something far more interesting and complex as other deadmen are being introduced as well as their pasts. None of them are really very deeply developed(with some exceptions), but just enough you can enjoy and feel somewhat connected with them.

You should read it if:

You wanna read a good (tho slow to get into) story that makes you feel invested in its characters, also if you have interest in reading manga with very high quality art, and if violence doesn't bother you.