Category Archives: Opinion

Winter 2021 Anime Season Overview

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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It seems like the response to the columns so far has been mostly positive, so here is another. This one is from a little earlier this year, in which I looked at the Winter season and its stacked list of sequels and new series, including…ugh, “Wonder Egg Priority.” Anyway, hope you enjoy this short bit of nostalgia for earlier this year.


Welcome back, tourists

Well…yeah, we’re here I guess. I don’t think most people expected the world to get much better just cause a cinderella crystal ball dropped when the clock struck midnight, but there is always that tiny feeling of hope. Anyway, back to anime.

With every change in the trees comes a change in TV, and man did the Winter 2021 season deliver in spades. The combination of a bunch of setbacks and delays for certain series culminated in one of the most exciting seasons of the last few years. There are lots of important sequels and some impressive newcomers to the scene, so let’s talk about it. 

When I say this season is stacked, I really mean it. Just of the most popular series, “Attack on Titan” is back for its fourth and final season, reaching the climax of its most recent arc. “The Promised Neverland” has returned for its second season, as the kids of a strange orphanage continue their dangerous journey.

On top of that, there are sequels for a few popular Isekai shows, including “Reincarnated as a Slime,” “Re:Zero,” and one of my personal favorites “Log Horizon.” Some fairly popular slice-of-life shows also got new seasons as well, including “Yuru Camp” and “Non-Non Biyori” getting their second and third seasons, respectively. 

On top of the high number of anticipated sequels, the Winter 2021 slate also brought with it some great new series. The first worth talking about is one that many have been anticipating since its announcement late last year. “Horimiya” is a romance show that focuses on two unlikely friends who quickly develop feelings for each other they are both too scared to admit.

The series centers on the idea that people usually have different personalities in different social situations. So far, at least, the show has not done a whole lot beyond that, but its pacing and the depth of its characters implies a much better story to come. 

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Whereas many people were excited for “Horimiya’s” adaptation, pretty much no one saw “Wonder Egg Priority” coming. This makes a bit of sense, though, as the original creator and scriptwriter, Saki Takahashi, has no other credited anime productions under his belt, and has only worked on a handful of relatively short manga before this. 

It may have come out of nowhere, but “Wonder Egg Priority” likely will not leave anyone’s memory for quite a while. It focuses on young girls who have gained the ability to enter a dream-like world where the task is to “break open eggs” and save the girls that come out of them from their trauma and abusers.

The subject matter by its self would make the show memorable, as it touches on everything from bullying, suicide, and sexual assault. However, it is that, combined with its colorful presentation, intricate and yet somehow earworm-y soundtrack, and nuanced characters that makes it so amazing. Not to mention the series is not even halfway done, and already appears to be an easy contender for anime of the year. 

One other show worth a brief mention is “EX-ARM,” a sci-fi series about a young high school student who hates machines, but who seemingly finds himself in the middle of robotic warfare. The newest Crunchyroll original, if the internet is to be believed, is one of if not the worst anime ever made. For people who find themselves fans of hate-watching, this might just be a good watch, though I cannot formally confirm or deny that. 

This definitely feels like one of the better seasons to come out in a while. Sequels, exciting originals, and garbage for people who enjoy garbage, I guess? Seems like there is something for everyone. 


How do you feel about the Winter 2021 season? Let me know in the comments. Feel free to also check out my column from last week where I discuss the cost of anime as a hobby.

If you are interested in reading more from me, check under blog to read my most recent stuff, or look below for some related posts. Also, if you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal, or pledging on Patreon. You can even support by just liking and sharing this post.

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

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Five Anime Characters Who Deserve Spinoffs

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Oftentimes anime, and stories in general, are defined by their main characters. “Harry Potter,” “Naruto,” anime aimed at kids such as “Yugioh” and “Pokemon,” as well as a ton of others. Some stories are just better suited to that orientation, which is totally fine. However, there are a lot of series which produce characters who are more interesting than the main character, and sometimes even just more interesting than the rest of the show. With that in mind, today, I thought I would take the opportunity to talk about some of these significantly more interesting characters, ones that could probably rock their own spinoff series. Without further adu, let us get into it.

N (Pokemon: Black and White)

Is…this cheating?

Part of me was not sure whether to include a “Pokémon” character here because it feels like the games is the primary medium through which people enjoy the franchise. Still, many people grew up with and still currently enjoy the anime series, so it feels kind of fair.

N still feels like an anomaly as far as “Pokémon” characters go. After all, most character motivation in the anime series goes as far as being a good trainer or breeder and while it is true that the series is aimed at kids, that always came off as kind of lazy. N, however, is one of the sole exceptions. Much of his arc as a villain is him questioning the structure of “Pokémon” society, asking the tough questions like “Are Pokemon treated fairly?” and “Are they better off without humans?” I did not actually watch all of B&W, so I can only really attest to his arc in the original games, but he could easily carry a 12 episode cour set in the “Pokémon” Universe.

Hinata Miyake (A Place Further Than the Universe)

This one is a little less fair because all of the characters in “A Place Further Than the Universe” are actually good. However, of the four main girls, she feels the most interesting, even without having the most development. This is because what we do get of her background is really interesting. Homeschooled most of her life and graduated high school early, now doing college while working part time at a convenience store and just shows up wanting to go to Antarctica.

There are so many questions that surround her throughout the course of the series, and unfortunately, there are not that many answers. Now, maybe she does not carry a whole 12 episode series by herself, but I do think she is worth at least a couple of OVAs focused on her, with a bigger focus on her life as a kid.

Akari Kawamoto (March Comes in Like a Lion)

Speaking of super interesting characters who did not get as much development as they probably should have…

Do not get me wrong, “March” is still one of my favorite shows. However, for as interesting as Hina’s arc was in the second season, it felt like Akari was oftentimes neglected. As the primary maternal figure in the series who essentially had to take on that role at the drop of a hat, one might think that she would have a bit more focus than she does. Like, sure, she definitely has some spotlight episodes, but none that are primarily about her, aside from maybe one or two. This also is not to say that she is more interesting than Rei. But I do think a series which focused on her transformation from a daughter to a guardian figure would be incredibly interesting.

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Shun Aonuma (From the New World)

Re-watching this series recently made me realize just how much depth there is behind the story and characters, even if the production quality is not always there to support it. At the top of the candidates for most interesting from the series is Shun. Yeah, sure, part of that interest is generated from just how early he exits the series. However, his relationship with Saki and Satoru was genuinely one of the most interesting elements, and his home life is left a complete mystery. There is a ton here that could very easily fill up a mini-OVA series.

Arthur Boyle (Fire Force)

Ok, but like seriously, can he talk about him?

I said in my discussion of “Fire Force” that Arthur’s character is…confusing. Like, he’s perpetually stupid, was raised in a happy family until he was not, and thinks he is King Arthur because his parents pretended with him and now he just uses the persona as childhood trauma. Yet, he is relegated in the anime as a…joke character? To be honest, his entire existence just bewilders me so much. I would want to see a spinoff focusing on him for no other reason than clarification, because wtf?!


What characters would you like to see get their own spinoff? Let me know in the comments.

If you are interested in reading more from me, check under blog to read my most recent stuff, or look below for some related posts. Also, if you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal, or pledging on Patreon. You can even support by just liking and sharing this post.

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

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Is Watching Anime Too Expensive?

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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Welcome back to this series of re-uploaded columns from my work with my college newspaper. One of the topics I covered on my column was the cost of anime as a hobby. While there are certainly a lot of modern conveniences that make watching anime easier, for those who would rather not resort to illegal streaming, it can still be expensive. I hope you enjoy the read.


One of the most deceptively difficult questions to answer about anime over the last few years has actually been “where do I watch it?” Most people would reason that since media of all kinds has become significantly more accessible that anime would follow suit. While this is true generally speaking, much like any hobby that isn’t rock collecting, the dollars start to add up after a while. 

First, it is worth acknowledging again that, relative to just 15 years ago, it is definitely easier to watch anime. Before, if a show came out that someone was interested in, they would have to either buy an expensive box set or pirate the anime online in terrible quality while also risking the safety of their computer. Now, most people do not have to think twice about this.

However, the advent of movie and tv streaming has brought both solutions and also new problems. While getting a large number of shows for a set monthly price is a totally reasonable bargain, the model begins to unravel once a large number of similar services start to emerge, each carrying their own unique libraries. In fact, one might say that the problem streaming services set out to fix has been revived in a new way. 

As time has gone by and the popularity of anime has gone way up, many of these same streaming services, Netflix, Hulu, as well as anime exclusive services such as Crunchyroll, Funimation, and HiDive! are also looking for a piece of the pie. Even Amazon a few years ago wanted a share of the market and attempted to cash in with their service “Anime Strike,” which cost five dollars a month extra on top of the existing Amazon Prime fee.

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Exclusives have also become a significantly bigger part of the streaming service appeal, and the same is holding true for anime as well. Netflix made a huge effort early on to cash in on anime’s upward trend, and it does appear to be paying off, as the company owns the exclusive rights to an increasing amount of hot-topic shows within the community. 

Companies like Crunchyroll are also beginning to dip their toes into exclusives as well, with a number of Webtoon crossovers including “Tower of God” and “God of High School.” These shows have also turned out to be relatively popular among fans. Funimation, while not as focused in that area, does corner a large part of the market for English dubs for many of the most popular long-running and seasonal shows, including “Black Clover,” “One Piece” and “The Promised Neverland.”

This further division of popular shows among various streaming services means that anyone looking to keep up with what is new is going to have to pay a fairly hefty price. This has led to many figures in the community talking about a potential rise in piracy if companies begin to raise their prices too much. 

The streaming wars will probably continue to rage on for some time. Companies will continue competing for the various series which draw the most eyes in the short term. Long term, however, it may just be the case that being an anime fan, or a fan of tv and movies for that matter, continues to get even more expensive. It might be that streaming just becomes the new cable. 


How do you all feel about the cost of anime? Let me know in the comments below. Feel free to also check out the column I uploaded last week about “Tokyo Godfathers” and Satoshi Kon.

If you are interested in reading more from me, check under blog to read my most recent stuff, or look below for some related posts. Also, if you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal, or pledging on Patreon. You can even support by just liking and sharing this post.

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

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Tokyo Godfathers and Satoshi Kon

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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“A post not on Wednesday or Sunday? Please tell me he’s not getting off schedule again.”

No, no, nothing like that. I wanted to use this post as an opportunity to let you all know that, for the next month or so, depending on how much I post, I’ll be putting some of my columns from my college newspaper on here as a bit of extra content. Normal Wednesday and Sunday posts will still be coming, just with these in addition. For this post, I reviewed my first ever work from Satoshi Kon, “Tokyo Godfathers,” and boy was it an experience. I’m hoping to start “Paranoia Agent” sometime soon, but for now, I hope you’ll enjoy my thoughts.


It feels weird saying that given, well, everything. However, today I am writing because I have a bit of a confession: I have never watched a Satoshi Kon film, until today. Any anime nerds reading this probably immediately threw up in their mouths and called me a fake fan. Those who are new to the world of anime are probably thinking “who’s he?”

Satoshi Kon was a Japanese writer and filmmaker, who directed some extremely influential animated movies and TV series, including “Perfect Blue,” “Paprika,” and “Paranoia Agents.” Sadly, he passed away in 2010 due to his pancreatic cancer becoming terminal within just a few months of being diagnosed. Kon has long since been celebrated as a legendary figure within the anime community.

It honestly makes me feel even worse, knowing I put off his work for so long, but, ironically, this legacy of greatness only made me more scared of approaching his work at all. However, that is no longer the case, as I have finally swallowed my fear and decided to watch his 2003 film “Tokyo Godfathers.” This is my first ever Satoshi Kon experience.

“Tokyo Godfathers” centers around a group of homeless people, a man, a trans woman, and a teenage girl. One day, while the three are walking back to their tent, they discover a baby lying in a pile of garbage. The group ultimately decides, after a lot of arguing, to find the baby’s original parents. However, they soon realize just how difficult the journey is going to be. 

Like, really difficult.

I had always heard people describe Kon’s work as “strange” and “cerebral,” but, honestly, “Tokyo Godfathers” feels pretty tame, at least compared to everything I know about his other works without having seen them. It honestly feels more strange in a sociocultural context than anything else.

I say this for a few reasons. One, more so than a general belief in God, the movie actively invokes the idea of a Christian god in relation to Kyouko, the baby they are trying to get home. This is supported by the fact that Gin and Hana, two of the movie’s main characters, are watching a nativity scene at the beginning, and always reference god in the same way from that point on. 

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Two, the film includes a lot of acts that are supposed to be viewed by the audience as miracles. Not getting hit by a bus that crashed into a store they were just in, surviving a fall by hanging on two pieces of clothes and slowly drifting down, finding the baby’s mother as she was about to kill herself. Then, there is the image of the three wise men that Gin, Hana, and Miyuki invoke as well.

This is not to say that invoking Christianity by itself is necessarily weird, only that it strikes me as a particular choice for a director living in a country with a Christian population of only 1.5% as of 2018. Still, I think it works well for the story “Tokyo Godfathers” is trying to tell, one about hardship, perseverance, and the sad realities of day to day life. 

It feels weird to mention this now, but this is also supposed to be a comedy film. One might think that between all of the heavy topics brought up so far that the film was purely a drama or some sort of historical fiction, but no it actually manages to succeed in being quite hilarious in spite of, or maybe even due to, its subject matter.

Hana often does the heavy lifting on this front. Her extremely emotional state of being, combined with a great voice performance from Shakina Nayfack brings a lot of personality and funny moments in scenes that would otherwise feel just hollow and depressing. 

A great example comes from the beginning of the film when Hana tells a servant that, despite being biologically male, she wants to have a baby, and that doing so would be a miracle. The same service worker later sees Hana holding the missing baby, which makes her believe a Christmas miracle really did happen.

If I had to describe “Tokyo Godfathers” and my first experience with Satoshi Kon, it would be…underwhelmed. Granted, this is not because the film was bad, quite the opposite. The film was amazing, no questions asked. However, I think after everything I said in the beginning, I still let the hype get to me a bit. From today forward, I will continue on with this journey of watching Kon’s works, and hopefully, get to enjoy all the “strangeness” that has brought so many others joy.


How do you all feel about Satoshi Kon and “Tokyo Godfathers?” Let me know in the comments.

If you are interested in reading more from me, check under blog to read my most recent stuff, or look below for some related posts. Also, if you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal, or pledging on Patreon. You can even support by just liking and sharing this post.

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

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Does Anime Need to Change?

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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As a teenage boy and a younger fan of anime, there were a lot of things that I used to not really think about when it came to the medium. Whether it be the art style which was significantly different to almost anything on TV at the time, or the diversity in topic and storytelling, anime always felt like a breath of fresh air. Sure, I enjoyed a lot of American cartoons and TV shows, but something about anime, much like with other people, really resonated with me.

Even now, as my attention span has shortened significantly and it has become a lot harder to sit down and focus on a single series, anime is still one of my obsessions. However, as is the case when people grow older, our views of the things we hold dear begin to change, and the types of anime which are most interesting change with them.

A recent video made by Gigguk sparked a bit of discussion online after he asked a producer at Studio J.C. Staff whether or not international fans have any effect on production, to which the producer basically said, “no, not really.” There emerged to major sides to the discussion. One side was happy with the response, arguing that a lot of western fans of anime only serve to change anime for the worse. On the other side, there were…well, people saying the opposite? To be honest, it mainly felt like an excuse for right-wing anime fans to air their grievances about SJWs or whatever.

Now, when having conversations like this, it is always important to separate the questions we’re trying to answer. The first is a question of empiricism, i.e. “Do international fans affect production?” It may be true that for J.C. Staff specifically that international fans do not have much sway in their numbers, but for a Studio like bones, which not only debuted “Space Dandy” in the west before airing it in Japan, and which also oversees IPs such as “My Hero Academia” and “Godzilla,” the answer is probably quite a bit different.

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The second question is one of purpose or principal, in other words “Should international fans affect production,” to which the answer there is…it depends. At the end of the day, anime studios are businesses, and like any business in a capitalist system, they ultimately have to balance their principles with their need to make a profit. From their perspective, its a pretty simple math problem. Material aimed at a more international audience equals a larger potential fan base which equals more potential money.

Now, of course, it is a bit more complicated than that. While it is true that a series like Demon Slayer is much more likely to garner an international audience than say your typical ecchi harem series, the audience of that ecchi harem series is also much more likely to sink a couple hundred dollars into figurines and merchandise, because well, anime girls are attractive. Since studios do not often make much off the production itself, and rely on merchandise sales in order to recoup a lot of the initial cost, it makes a lot of sense why they would cater to an established audience. Granted, a lot of this has to do with the business model itself and just how much of a cut places like Crunchyroll, Funimation, and Netflix take, but that is somewhat of a separate topic.

Personally, while I understand why studios adapt the material that they do, the amount of “comedic misunderstandings” that occur in any given episode, even in shows that are primarily not about romance or sex, is annoying. So, as for my answer to this post’s question, yeah there are a number of things that could be changed about anime, whether it be the overuse of sexual comedy or the frankly alarming amount of underage-looking characters that appear in these situations.


While this is my genuine opinion, I wrote this post more as a launching board for discussion, so please do let me know how you feel down in the comments below, as there seems to be a lot of room for nuance on this topic.

If you are interested in reading more from me, check under blog to read my most recent stuff, or look below for some related posts. Also, if you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal, or pledging on Patreon. You can even support by just liking and sharing this post.

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

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An Incredibly Dissapointing End: Wonder Egg Priority Special

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

If my last post did on the subject did not make it abundantly clear, my incredibly high hopes for “Wonder Egg Priority,” a show whose first few episodes were some of the most promising in recent memory, were dashed in almost record time. The mid-episodes of the series made it seem like it was taking a much slower pace, which would have been fine if it was a full two cours like its pacing might have implied.

However, this turned out to not be the case. By the end of episode 10, I was getting pretty worried, as it felt like the show had all but run out of time to produce a satisfying ending. The next two episodes, while having an idea of where they wanted to take the series, felt slap-dashed in the worst way possible, like watching a clip of car go from full speed and in control to slamming on the breaks and beginning a front end summersault across the highway.

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Seeing this series progress pretty much exactly like those horse drawing memes was pretty sad to watch, especially when you consider the fact that “Wonder Egg Priority” was an anime original, and thus they had full control over the direction of the series. Now, given how incredibly messed up modern anime productions are in terms of workload, and that Cloverworks was also responsible for the incredibly poorly handled second season of “The Promised Neverland,” I cannot, in good conscious, put much of the blame of Shinji Nojima.

However, the reality is that, the show just did not turn out as great as it probably could have. What had the potential to be anime of the year is ended up being an above average series with some great animation and a solid score to boot. With all of that being said, It was announced shortly after the airing of episode 12 that the show would receive a special that would serve as the series end. So, did the “Wonder Egg Priority” special do anything for the series?

Meh? It feels really shitty that the first 20+ minutes of this 45 minute final episode was a recap of the series, especially when you consider that one, the was only 12 episodes to begin with, and two, it already had a recap episode right before the lead up to the final four episodes. Again, I want to clarify that I am not necessarily blaming Nojima, only that this decision makes absolutely no sense. There is simply no reason for it.

The special also did not feel like it ended the series. I do not want to give anything away for those who have not seen it, considering it only came out less than a week ago. Still, it would be hard to argue that what we got could even be considered an ending. It felt more so like the studio giving up on trying to tell a story.

Ok, I guess I’ll try some positivity. While it was still far from being satisfying in any way, the series did at least dole out some answers for the million questions its ending raised. However, I can say that there was a not insignificant amount of development in both Neiru’s and Frill’s backstory. In addition, though nothing appears to be confirmed, its ending did leave room open for other potential specials to come and fill in more of these holes. How likely that is given Cloverworks’ current trajectory is up for debate, but theoretically still possible.

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The quality in other areas also stayed relatively stable. The animation stayed of a higher quality, though there was not a ton of action going on in the episode to begin with. The soundtrack, it must be said again, is absolutely superb. Producer De De Mouse’s music for this series is up there when it comes to anime soundtracks, as he takes the chaotic nature of “Wonder Egg Priority’s” plot and distills it into sound.

I am definitely not going to pretend like I am happy with how it turned out, nor am I going to ignore the moral failings of the production. This special, much like the main series, was just ok. Honestly, I do not know if I am even any better off having seen it, but now that its over, I feel ready to move on.


How do you feel about “Wonder Egg Priority” and its special? Let me know in the comments below.

If you are interested in reading more from me, check under blog to read my most recent stuff, or look below for some related posts. Also, if you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal, or pledging on Patreon. You can even support by just liking and sharing this post.

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

What I’ll Be Watching – Summer 2021 Anime Season

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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Managing productivity? What’s that? I only make videos at 9 in the morning after staying up the whole night.

The summer anime season is fast approaching us, and since I somehow managed to find the motivation to do the thing I have been saying I was going to do for a while, I decided to make a video as opposed to the normal post. Will this be a regular thing for the blog now? maybe. Do I have any control over my own creative processes and motivation levels? no.


What are you watching next season? Let me know in the comments below.

If you are interested in reading more from me, check under blog to read my most recent stuff, or look below for some related posts. Also, if you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal, or pledging on Patreon. You can even support by just liking and sharing this post.

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

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Ok, I was (Kind of) Wrong About “Fire Force”

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Listen, listen. I’m not saying you should expect a random hiatus from me every once and a while, but I am saying my brand is kind of built on inconsistency ;). In all seriousness though, I do apologize for being gone. I have had a lot going on, from my sister’s graduation, my grandmother coming to visit from out of state, and my cousin getting married. Plus, I have been trying to scratch my competitive itch by climbing the ranked ladder in Hearthstone and competing for a spot in the upcoming master’s tour events.

As I’ve been getting back into the swing of things, I was reminded, as I usually am, that their are approximately one billion shows that I have started up and have not finished. Not that this list will ever actually shrink in size, but I figured since I was not as interested in catching up on seasonal stuff at the moment, I would try and watch something else. Ultimately, I settled on “Fire Force” for a few reasons.

First, the artwork and character designs are ones that I really like. Those who have followed me for any length are probably aware that I make it a point to re-watch “Soul Eater” every year. Needless to say, I am a big fan of Atsushi Okubo’s work. The premise is also notably darker than his previous work. Whereas “Soul Eater” often feels like a typical Shonen with a horror aesthetic, the premise of Fire Force comes off as legitimately terrifying in a way that “Soul Eater” does not achieve.

However, the thing that initially turned me off to the series was, above all else, its fanservice. Like, yeah, Shonen anime generally has fanservice and often uses its female main characters as readily available punchlines in comedic misunderstandings, I get it. Still, I was hoping a series with a premise as bleak and unforgiving as this one might forgo that kind of humor.

As of writing this post, I am roughly three quarters of the way through the first season. I can say with no hesitation that I am very much still enjoying the series. The action has been amazing, the reveals and character development are solidly a step above the average shounen series. I will admit, I was mostly wrong to say that the show was not worth watching. With that being said, the fan service is still bad and totally nonsensical.

The best example of this thus far is the end of the show’s second arc. Shinra and a few others are assigned to train at Fire Force Branch 1 in order to investigate a potential suspect in the creation of artifical infernals. As it turns out, that person is Rekka Hoshimiya, one of the commanders of division one. Shinra ends up confronting Rekka and the two fight. However, while Shinra is in the middle of fighting a CHILD MURDERER, he “accidentally” gets punched into Tamaki’s chest not once, but twice.

Before I get any comments along these lines, I am not asking that fanservice be removed entirely from Shonen. Relieving tension in between serious scenes is important so that the whole series in not dowered in a depressive mood. I would even go as far as to argue that comedic misunderstandings like these could be used to hint at deeper relationships between characters.

Regardless, I do that think it is a lot to ask from h writers to maintain some level of tonal consistency when it comes to their fight scenes. In other words, at the very least, save the fanservice for after the fight is over, rather than during a scene where Shinra is fighting, and I cannot stress this enough, a literal CHILD MURDERER.

Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.


How do you all feel about “Fire Force” and Fanservice? Let me know in the comments below.

If you are interested in reading more from me, check under blog to read my most recent stuff, or look below for some related posts. Also, if you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal, or pledging on Patreon. You can even support by just liking and sharing this post.

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

Five Series I’ll Be Watching from Spring 2021

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

While I am planning on finishing out the shows from this season, time inevitably moves forward, and the Spring 2021 season is almost upon us. It definitely does not feel as stacked as the last season, but there are a number of interesting standouts here that might just end up being relatively good shows.

To Your Eternity

I’ll be completely honest, about 90% of my interest in the show thus far has been generated by the name attached to it. Yoshitoki Ooima is also the original creator of “A Silent Voice,” a film that has every right to be called one of the best animated film of the last decade. While I am not necessarily convinced the series will rise to the occasion in the same way, Its trailer certainly has not pulled any punches with regards to its content. The combination of a lonely boy roaming the artic and a strange wolf with many secrets to reveal feels like a recipe for continued excitement throughout the series. Though, I do remember saying something vaguely similar about “Dororo” and, well, lets just say that Final thoughts post isn’t coming any time soon.

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Zombie Land Saga: Revenge

Ok, so maybe I gave up on “Zombieland Saga” a little to early. After all, everything I saw about the show initially was pretty funny, and I only ended up watching one or two episodes. I mean, what is life if not getting hit by a car, becoming a zombie and then joining and all zombie idol group? The show is my type of humor for sure, and in hindsight I am not really sure what turned me off to this series other than just being unmotivated to watch new things. I guess I will just have to try again and see what happens.

Nomad: Megalo Box 2

I still maintain that “Megalo Box” does not need a second season, and that the first season enough. After all, unlike a lot of other anime, the series ends on a feeling of completeness in the story. With that being said, I am still incredibly excited for what the series has to offer this time around. With seven years having gone past and J.D. stuck in a cycle of drinking and underground fighting, a new challenger has seemingly arisen to remind him of the days of old. In much the same way people are fans of the “Rocky” sequels, I feel like this season might open up the space to explore areas of J.D.’s character that otherwise were left fairly unexplored, if at all. So, yeah, I’m all for it.

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Shadow House

Being the first release of Mangaka group Soumatou, “Shadow House” does not appear to have much of a following. However, the people who have watched the series to seem to be in agreement on its quality. Shadow House follows the story of aristocrats living in a western mansion, except their faces are hidden in shadow and are represented by dolls, with more being revealed about these characters as the story moves forward. There are definitely a lot of interesting angles that one could take this kind of premise, and for that reason I am excited to see where the story goes. At the very least, if the series does crash and burn, it will probably end up being pretty spectacular.

Eden’s Zero

Morbid curiousity exists in all of us, and unfortunately for me it has led to wanting to watch Hiro Mashima’s follow up to “Fairytail,” “Eden’s Zero.” I have written a number of articles and posts about my evolving feelings on “Fairytail,” but in summary, my feelings on the series have soured quite a bit since starting it back in 2013. While I may be letting my feelings for the series spill into my assessment of “Eden’s Zero,” I cannot help but feel like the problems of “Fairytail” will end up spilling over into this series as well. Already it feels like the character designs are lackluster, and the story just feels unmotivated, like Mashima took the adventuring in his previous work and just through it into this one.

While I may have some reservations about these series, it definitely feels like there is a lot of potential for quality. The spring season will soon be upon us, and these are the anime I will be watching thus far.


What are you all planning on watching for the upcoming season? Let me know in the comments below.

Five Anime I REally Want to Re-watch

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

The fact that I have seen a least a few dozens memes related to this topic tells me that we are well into that phase of quarantine. Ya know, the one where everyone has tried all of the new stuff that people said they were going to do and has gone back to just re-watching their favorite shows. Yeah, well, I never really tried to much new stuff. In fact, this last season is probably the most amount of new anime I have consumed at one time. I know, I know, fake fan, I get.

But, hey, that’s kind of just who I am, I really like what I am already comfortable with, so for today, I thought I would go over some of the shows I am most excited to Re-watch in the near future. With that being said, lets get started.

Toradora!

“Toradora” is one that I have already started on again and, if I am being completely honest, I am not exactly sure why. At least so far, the show has the same decent qualities I vaguely remember. However, I can’t help but feel I was spurred on by a bit of leftover high school nostalgia and the legacy that the show has with long time anime fans. Like, do not get me wrong, there is plenty there worth watching again, but this is probably the series I want to re-watch the least at of these five if for no other reason than I am not sure how I will end up feeling about it on the other side.

Log Horizon

On the other hand, “Log Horizon” is a series that I have been meaning to re-visit for a long time now, as it is one of my favorite series of all time. The series was one of the first to come out of the early Isekai boom that followed the immense success of “Sword Art Online,” but had significantly more of a focus on worldbuilding and politics that I found to be much more interesting. It is a series that dares to questions fundamentally aspects of living and how those things work inside this video game world, something that a lot of modern Isekai do not even attempt, let alone succeed at. Plus, with the latest season just about to wrap up, and me having watched none of it, there will be a nice little surprise at the end.

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The Toaru Series

A lot of this list could just be boiled down to “x series has new material, therefore I would like to re-watch said series for full context” and it would be entirely true. However, the “Toaru” series is also a franchise that is just a lot of fun. Its confusing system of “magic” vs “science” powers combined with the weird jumps from the main character to side stories about other areas of the city makes it so that there is so much going on all at once. Like, its not good, but it does have its moments. Also, hot take, “Railgun” is significantly better than “Index,” just sayin’.

Psycho-Pass

If I were to do an anime studio tier list, which, in all likelihood, I probably will at some point, expect production I.G. to be fairly high up on that list. It will be for a number of reasons, obviously, but one of the big ones will be “Psycho-Pass,” a show that explores the ideas of criminal justice from the perspective of a futuristic society in which people are judged by a system that gives them a number from a gun based on how likely they are to commit crime. This show has a lot of re-watch value because of how intense some of its best moments are and also because with each passing day I am reminded of just how important this show’s message really is.

*stares in George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Eric Garner, Philando Castile, and literally hundreds of other names have died at the hands of cops who only saw them as a crime*

America is kind of an awful country, huh…well that’s a separate post entirely.

Re:Creators

While there is not as much a focus on world-building, much like “Log Horizon,” “Re:Creators” questions fundamental assumptions about how its own world even works. Rather than hold your hand through some boring plot, it presents the idea that creators, i.e., novelists, video game creators, mangaka and the like are gods, and that their creations have now come to this world for some undisclosed purpose. For some that might not sound like the most original idea, but the series presents it in a way that makes it a matter of literal life and death.


What series are you planning on/are re-watching at the moment? Let me know in the comments below.

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