Category Archives: Opinion

Reflecting on Anime in the 2010s and the Turbulence of Life

If there is any a more potent reminder that time is starting to move more quickly, it is the end of a decade. In just a few more months, 2019 will end, marking the beginning of another 10 years. Before I inevitably forget to write my obligatory end of the year post welcoming and hoping for a better next year, I wanted to take some time to talk about Anime in this decade, what affect it has had on me, and where I see myself going.

A Decade of Anime: A Medium Growing Stronger

I’ll admit that, given my younger age and relative inexperience with older series, this next statement is going to be incredibly biased, but anime in the 2010s has been a truly wonderful experience. It seems to be the case that as the medium has grown in popularity, especially in the West, the diversity in its genre’s and overall storytelling has gone up. Part of it is likely due to the overall growth allowing for experimentation and risk at animation studios, such as at Studio Trigger. However, part of it also seems to come from the influence of and involvement of cultures and people outside of Japan, such as with LeSean Thomas and Kevin Pinkerton.

Many Studios, including the previously mentioned Trigger, alongside others like Madhouse and Ufotable, have been pushing against the grain when it comes to anime’s generally less polished nature. Ufotable in particular has done amazing work, and has seen great success in this this year’s Demon Slayer.

The mainstream acceptance of anime in many more places across the western cultural landscape has also meant an increased an number of fans getting involved in the medium. Of course, in the short term, as someone who writes about anime, this generally benefits me, but it also means that those who enjoy it are less likely to be isolated from others who share the same interest. More discussion can only serve to enhance and expand understanding of these shows, which will serve to enrich future discussion.

It seems as though anime in the during this decade has gone through sort of cultural shift that video games went through in the later part of the 2000s. As more people became familiar with video games, and the medium started getting mainstream acceptance, people came to see it as just another thing people do. Anime has, slowly, but surely, gone through roughly the same process.

2010 Anime’s Affect on Me.

I try not to treat certain eras of any given medium of entertainment as a monolith, because every era can be defined by a quite a number of things. However, Anime in the 2010s did seem to be noticeably different, for a lot of the reasons I already mentioned. The result of this, at least for me, is that I have only become more fascinated by the possibilities of anime.

Another effect is one that I have mentioned pretty often at this point, but is worth repeating here: without a lot of the shows from this decade, I probably would not have gone as deep down the rabbit whole into anime as I have. Growing up with anime has defined a large part of who I am, and through all my ups and downs it has been there with me, even if only in the background.

Anime with the Most Personal Impact

I have watched a lot of anime, most of it from this decade. However, I wanted to quickly shout-out some of the shows that have had a pretty profound impact on me and on my general approach to life.

Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai

After seeing the goofy English title and a few small snippets from the first episode, it was hard to imagine that this show was going to have any serious impact on me, but man am I glad to be wrong. Bunny Girl Senpai is a show that I can only really describe as deceptively wise, in that it is a show whose messages can only really come from people who have a lot of life experience. Granted, that is nothing special in an of itself, but it also came to me at a point in time when I needed to hear it.


I could probably write an entire separate article even longer than this one likely will be about how much Yugioh and other cards games influenced me as a person. But, as is true a lot of others like myself, I would have never gotten into the card game if it were not for the anime it spawned. The show kept me entertained for hours, and I would always go onto YouTube and rewatch a lot of the duels from the show, and While I do not play much of the game or even keep up to date with the latest series anymore, the franchise still has an important place in my heart.

and finally…

March Comes in Like a Lion

I don’t know if I need to say much at this point, but I will say a little anyway. Rei Kiriyama has been one of the more relatable characters that I have ever come across, and his story, despite being fairly distant in subject matter, is incredibly saddening even just on a human level. The feeling of the not knowing who you are is a universal one, and March Comes in Like a Lion conveys it incredibly well.

Looking Forward to the Future

I think what I am trying to say with this post overall is that anime is in a really good place, both for me and as a community. There are so many wonderful elements of anime to enjoy, and it is definitely much easier to be a fan than it was in the past. Here is to another decade of anime, making friends, and enjoying life.

How do you guys feel about anime in the 2010s? 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.

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A.I.C.O. Incarnation and Violet Evergarden: A Tale of Two Journeys

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While, I was on vacation, I got the opportunity to watch two different series on Netflix: Violet Evergarden and A.I.C.O Incarnation. There were a lot of good parts to both, but I would only consider one of them to be particularly good overall, that being Violet Evergarden. However, the reason why I consider Evergarden to be significantly better than Incarnation is because of the way each show handles the journey of each of its main Heroines.

For those who don’t know, Violet Evergarden tells the story of, well, Violet Evergarden, and her reintegration into society after the end of a civil war between the northern and southern factions of her country. Violet, being an emotionless child soldier, is unsure what to do initially, as she only ever took commands from her Major. She does, however, decide to become a Doll, someone who writes letters for those who can’t so that she can understand what the Major meant when he said “I love you” to Violet.

By contrast, A.I.C.O. Incarnation stars a fairly normal High School girl named Aiko, who, after losing her father to a car crash and her mother and brother in an accident known as “the burst,” relocates to a hospital/high school so that she can be looked after. Still, it is not long before things get weird for her. One day, a transfer student named Yuuya shows up only kidnap Aiko and tell her that the body she inhabits is fake, that her mother and brother are still alive, and that there is a way to get both her body and family back.

What most separates the two shows in terms of quality is A.I.C.O.’s failings, so I will start there. The most apparent problem with the show is how it front-loads a lot of information at the beginning, particularly near the end of episode one and the start of episode two, and because of this it feels confusing to try and fully understand the story. For instance, even the “burst,” the main event that is the catalyst for the show’s entire story, is only explained in vague terms at the beginning, and does not get properly explained until about episode three or four.

Another problem that the A.I.C.O suffers from which is a direct result the first problem is that because of a lack of understanding of the circumstances, it becomes a lot harder to feel invested in Aiko as a character. The rushed nature of the first couple of episodes makes it to where there is no real reason to pay attention and as a result the opening feels sluggish and boring.

However, Aiko herself is actually a fairly compelling main character. When it does finally become apparent whats going on, it feels like a high pressure situation and even when the truth of the situation is revealed at the end, the show still makes the audience want to root for Aiko.

Violet Evergarden, meanwhile, supports its main character in ways that make the show much more enjoyable. For instance, in contrast with A.I.C.O., Violet Evergarden takes its time in establishing and developing Violet as a character, not wasting a single bit of screen time. The show always makes it feel as if something new is being learned about Violet or as though she is continuing towards her goal and becoming more human. A good example of this is the episode where her new found friend Luculia’s brother is struggling to get his life back together. It is in this episode that Violet finally begins to understand how to write a letter, and in the process gives Luculia’s brother the strength to finally start over. Even over the course of just one ten minute interaction, Violet has a subtle yet immensely powerful transformation.

Another good example of this is near the end of the show, when after the climax of the series, Violet visits the Major’s brother, Gietfried, who has resented Violet since her brother’s death during the war. After realizing that there was not point in resent her, Gietfried says that the Major’s final order was to live free and happy, and that he knows that what his brother would have wanted. Up until this point, Violet had repeated the idea that she does not need to take orders from anyone, but did so rather unconvincingly. This time, however, as Violet turns to Gietfried and ends her visit, she says “I don’t need to take orders anymore,” and does so with a determined and reassured smile.

Violet also takes many other journeys because of her job as a Doll, and to be honest it would take a lot of time to go through all of them, but it is clear that the show makes a point to make sure that each of the journeys mean something. Whether it be a mom writing letters to her daughter before she dies, or unintentionally helping a young astronomer understand what he wants to do with his life, Violet’s episodic journeys not only help those that she visits, but are the reason she can be confident in herself by the end.

While I definitely enjoyed watching both shows, there is an important storytelling distinction that separates the two: A journey only is only as important and powerful as the character who takes it. Even more importantly, a great journey can redeem even the most uninteresting of characters, and Violet Evergarden seems to understand that a lot more.

How do you guys feel about these two shows? Let me know in the comments. If you would like to support Animated Observations, check out my Ko-fi:

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Oregairu Season Three Expectations and Hopes

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Well, its actually happening. It was announced roughly a week ago now in a Japanese magazine that Oregairu, or My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU, is getting a third season, which was done shortly after the announcement of the release date for the fourteenth volume of the light novel. Since this series is one of my favorite shows of all time, I thought it only appropriate to talk about it.

My Thoughts on the Series Thus Far

Since the only time I have really talked about the show in any depth was on an OWLS post a few months back, it would make sense to summarize my thoughts on the series so far. Now, I don’t often use the word masterpiece, so I won’t here. However, Oregairu is by far and away one of the best slice of life series, possibly even best anime period, I have ever watched. The first season was a pleasant surprise back when it first came out, and when I finished watching it, I thought about it a lot. At the time I was about to be in my freshman year of high school, and I was nervous. The first time I watched it, I was really just interested in Hachiman’s attitude of taking no prisoners, and always being brutally honest. I went back to watch it a second and third time, though, and I started to notice a lot more nuance. Less and less it became about Hachiman fighting his social situation and more about what it was doing to him as a person.

The second season piggy-backed off of this in a way that was both extremely well executed and yet also somehow extremely jarring. More and more Yukino and Yui were confronting him about his self-sacrificial nature and his tendency to always go with the easiest solution, and not necessarily the most graceful one. It was a turning point that signaled an the beginning of the end for Hachiman’s isolationist attitude, and by the end it seemed like all of them were starting to change for the better.

Where the Series Will Go

There are a few things to consider here. First, while I am not familiar with the light novels on a personal level, I do know that the second season adapted volumes seven through eleven, leaving only twelve through fourteen for the final season. Now, assuming that the last three volumes have a similar amount of content to the first eleven, that means that we likely get an anime only ending of some kind.

As for the content, my guess for right now is that much of the third season will focus on the three of them pulling back the personas that they were hiding behind at the end of season two.

A PV that was also recently released for the show seems to imply that there will be some romantic tension between the three of them.

Where the Series Should Go

What the end of season to also seemed to imply heavily is that each of our three main protagonists still have a lot of demons that need to exercised, so one thing I don’t want this season to be is happy-go-lucky. Of course, at the end of the season it would make sense for the three of them to triumph, but if the show doesn’t address any of the problems left after season two, it will be incredibly disappointing.

One other thing that would interesting to see is there life after high school, and what it is they end up doing. Now, of course, there are many anime that center around high school, but in Oregairu’s case especially the idea of social hierarchies is such a core part of its ethos that it would be interesting to see how each of them deal with a new dynamic.

How do you guys feel about the announcement of Oregairu’s third season, and about the show in general? Let me know in the comments below. If you would like to support The Aniwriter, or are just feeling generous, consider donating on ko-fi, or using one of my affiliate links below:

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Top Five Anime to Look Forward to in Spring 2019

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The winter 2019 season, as stacked with goods shows as it is, is now coming to a close, it will soon be time once again to embrace a new season, and while Spring does not seem to be as loaded as Winter was, there is still plenty there worth paying attention to.

5. Attack on Titan Season Three Part Two

While I haven’t actually been keeping up with Attack on Titan recently, I am definitely still invested in the series as a whole. The end of the season two and the beginning episodes of season three that I caught have been enough to keep me wondering about the core questions that lie at the heart of the series: What is in the basement? where is Erin’s dad? I want to find these answers because the show does such a great job of keeping these questions relevant.

4. Fruits Basket

I remember being in middle school and having one of my best friends at the time tell me about this series. Since I trusted his opinion a lot I went to check it out. Of course, being a middle school boy and seeing the cute anime school girl and reading the premise, I was immediately skeptical. I am definitely glad that my skepticism was not warranted, because I ended up loving Fruits Basket.

When I heard there was going to be a remake, and that most of the original dub cast was going to be in it again, I was genuinely excited, and still am as of now.

3. Kimetsu no Yaiba

When it comes to evaluating anime, much like I would for anything, I always look to what has come before. Kimetsu no Yaiba immediately sets off Dororo alarms for me, but in a really good way. However, having a similar story does not always mean that a show is going to be boring. As long a story can bring something noticeably different with its storytelling, there is always something to look forward to. Plus, getting the Ufotable treatment always helps.

2. One Punch Man Season Two

The first season of One Punch Man is undoubtedly one of the more interesting shows to come about in the last few years. A story about a super-hero that doesn’t have fun being a hero because he beats almost everyone in one punch. Now, with the second season upon us, as well as a change in hands for the studio behind the show, there remains to be seen a lot about what the show’s second season will bring, but still, it’s pretty hype.

1. Carole and Tuesday

So, let’s see. A futuristic society in which people now inhabit mars, A story focused on two girls, one coming from an extremely low-class background and the other from a wealthy background who want to make music, and animation from BONES. Yeah, I was sold the minute I heard about this show. I honestly have no idea about where the story is going to go, because I am not familiar with the source material, but Carole and Tuesday definitely has me the most hyped.

What are you all looking forward to next season? Let me know in the comments below. If you would like to support The Aniwriter, or are just feeling generous, consider donating on ko-fi or using one of my affiliate links down below:

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Correcting the Record: Kaguya-Sama is not Boring

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A couple of weeks ago I did my episode one reaction to Kaguya-Sama: Love is War. In that post, I was generally positive about the show, with my only concern being that the format could become super repetitive and uninteresting. I am here now to say that Kaguya-Sama is by far one of the most entertaining Slice-of-Life Comedies that I that I have seen in a while.

There are a lot of things that play into my current enjoyment of the show, but I think the main one is just how interesting the main characters are, or rather, how good the show is at getting me interested in said main characters. Both Kaguya and Miyuki are incredibly talented students, earning the best grades and easily acquiring the respect of their peers. However, on the inside, they are still awkward teens who have a crush on each other and just don’t want to admit it.

This leads into a lot of hilarious situations. One of my favorites so far is the scene where they are alone together in the student council room and in order to pass the time they decided to play a game of 20 questions, in which Miyuki asks Kaguya. The scene builds up a lot of dramatic tension by continually hinting that this might be when Kaguya reveals that fact that she like him, but that tension then becomes a wonderful payoff when at the end it is revealed that Kaguya was actually thinking of a dog instead of Miyuki.

This, however, is just one example of the great humor that comes out of the show, and not only is it great, it is diverse. There are so many interesting and funny scenarios that the two find themselves in, trying to out whit each other and get the other to admit there feelings, only to then be thwarted one way or another. In other words, I am glad I was wrong.

How have you all been feeling about Kaguya-Sama? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you would like to support The Aniwriter or are just feeling generous, consider donating on Ko-fi or using one of my affiliate links down below:

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One of the Important Conditions for a Good Isekai

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With the amount of Isekai anime coming out every season, it’s getting harder and harder to avoid it as a genre. Shows like “Death March to the Parallel World Rhapsody” and “The Rising of the Shield Hero,” for however questionable their quality, will always be on people’s radar because, well, its the new Isekai, so maybe it will be good. Still, despite its current oversaturation in anime, the Isekai genre still has one advantage over others: Its potential.

Now, before any of what I am about to say gets lost in language, I am not saying that other anime do not have potential. I do think, however, that the general premise that comes along with what defines an Isekai is one that can be taken in a lot of different ways. It also seems to me that the Isekai anime that most people would agree are bad fail to take advantage of the world that they have set up, either because the story doesn’t engage with these elements in an interesting way or they rely on previous tropes that have become tired.

One good example of this is “In Another World with my Smartphone.” Sure, in the beginning, the setup has a bit of novelty. A kid enters another world that he knows nothing about, with the catch being that he can bring his smartphone and have it work, as well as allowing him to use magic. However, unlike a comedy show like “Konosuba,” none of this is played for laughs, and the main character mainly comes across as overpowered and uninteresting. In this case, the story has failed to engage with the world and its mechanics in an interesting way and has therefore failed to realize its potential.

An example of a good Isekai would be something like Log Horizon. In it, the main character Shiro suddenly appears in a world that is eerily similar to an MMORPG he plays called Elder Tale. He assumes this because the world itself is structured much like the game and because he now has all the abilities of his in-game character, as do all of the other 30,000 players that are trapped in the game-esk world. From there, much of focus of the plot is on figuring out how the world itself works, as well as building up the world’s infrastructure enough to where adventurers can live happily in the hopes of one day escaping back to the real world. Shiro, being a famous player of Elder Tale, becomes a sort of de-facto leader, and starts to build up the political alliances and government infrastructure that makes the world function. In this way, Log Horizon does engage with its world in an interesting way, and actively tries to understand utilize its mechanics, fully realizing its potential.

However, this is not the only condition on which to judge whether or not an Isekai anime is necessarily good. If this were my sole condition on which to judge that, then I would have to admit that Sword Art Online is good, and I am not sure I am quite ready to do that.

It is helpful to think about it in some philosophical terms. In Epistemology, there is a concept known as Necessary and Sufficient Conditions. A Necessary Condition is one that is required for something to be true or for a definition to be met and a Sufficient Condition is one that satisfies a truth or definition completely. In this case, I would argue that engaging with the fantasy world that has been set up in an Isekai story is a Necessary, but not Sufficient Condition for calling that Isekai good.

What do you guys think are the elements of a good Isekai? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you would like to support The Aniwriter or are just feeling generous, consider donating on Ko-fi or using one of my affiliate links below:

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Everything is Politics, Including Anime, and What That Should Mean

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The phrase “Everything is political” has gone from an obscure term which originated in the late 1960s to something of a rallying cry for those who consider themselves to be on the left. The phrase has especially picked up a lot of value in recent years, as we have arrived at a political era in which people’s identities are more and more become a source of contention, and are sometimes even leading to violence.

For those who are unaware, while its exact origins are unknown, the phrase’s creation is generally credited to Carol Hanisch, an American activist who fought for women’s issues, and in 1969 joined the Women’s Liberation Front, an organization which was considered radical by the political establishment at the time. In an essay of hers which was later retitled “, The Personal is Political,” Hanisch describes her journey at the Women’s Liberation Front and how it was difficult to get other members of the group to agree that problems such as how men treated their wives, how much money a woman makes compared to her husband, and abortion were more than just personal ones. During the period of second-wave feminism, Hanisch and others like her managed to start a whole new conversation about what exactly was worth getting involved over.

Fast forward to today and, while many of the problems that second-wave feminists dealt with in their time have largely been solved, it seems like a large number of new problems have come to take their place. Rape on college campuses has become increasingly common, Revenge Porn, while having been dealt with by a few places on the state level, still goes largely unpunished, Sexual Harassment is still a problem in many workplaces, including in Hollywood and at large media corporations, as demonstrated by #Metoo, and while men are still more likely to commit suicide then women, the rate among women has increased about 50 percent over the past two decades. Now, I am three paragraphs into this article already and haven’t mentioned any Chinese cartoons yet so you might be wondering: What does any of this have to do with anime?

Well, a lot actually. In his TEDx talk titled, “Everything we do and don’t do is political,” Zachary Baiel stresses the importance of community involvement by using his own community of Lafayette, Indiana as an example. He further goes on to point out how many changes in his community only happened when people decided to get involved, like how a local biking group managed to get actual legislation passed on the city level by getting signatures for a petition and then getting it to their city council representative. Michael Toland put it well in his piece titled “Everything is Political” When he said “If your someone who takes the time to volunteer, you’re most likely volunteering with an organization with which your values align… Each of these decisions affects our communities, working to improve them.” Now, we may not gather together every month to meet with our local representative or hang out at the local library, but anime is a community.

Of course, everyone in the community watches anime, but we also converse online through various forums and social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit. Some of us write for blogs, make YouTube videos, and work in journalism related to the community. Sometimes we even take a break from our screens to go out into the real world and enjoy the many wonders that wait at anime conventions. There are so many ways in which people enjoy being a part of this wonderful little slice of the world that we as fans have carved out for ourselves, many even that I did not mention.

It is also important to recognize that our community is a diverse one. There are anime fans all around the globe of many different races, religions, ethnicities, sexual orientations, and genders. Every possible flavor of human being has been joined together by a strange addiction to Japanese animation, to anime. And it is not just the community itself that is diverse. Anime, for being more or less its own medium within animation, has many varying genres and subgenres for fans to explore. Wanna watch a show about giant robots? We have that. A dramatic romance? Got that too. A Slice of Life Comedy? Anime has you covered. Each of these diverse genres can also encompass a wide-ranging set of ideas on many topics, from big inherently political shows like Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood and its exploration of military dictatorships to the much more subtle politics of shows like Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai which is often underlined by a mental health epidemic. The reality is that all anime is going to have an political message because there are many aspects of life that we don’t often consider that are also political.

Take just the place where you live as an example. If you have a house, that means you probably got a loan in order to pay for it. The interest rate you got on that loan is directly affected by your country’s monetary policy. The electrical work, plumbing, and material used to build the house are all affected by regulations to ensure that it is safe. If you have an apartment, the rent you are charged and the cost of your utilities are affected by any rent controls that are passed by the local government. Also, the quality of your drinking water is also affected largely by your cities regulation. As much as we might not like it to be, everything is politics.

However, this does not mean that everything has to be viewed as politics. Sure, every show will have them, but that does not mean that you are required to engage in a shows politics if you enjoy it for other reasons. Even a show as universally enjoyed as Naruto has politics that explore the responsibility one has to their community, but even I have to admit that most of the time I am just there for the action.

What I am advocating for is not a constant political debate, but rather that we engage our entertainment critically, and ask ourselves why it is we enjoy certain shows. I am not even asking people to change their political viewpoints, necessarily. It is important, however, to recognize certain brands of reactionary politics that seek to make other people feel bad about their identity because those who engage in said reactionary politics feel like their own is somehow under attack. As a community, we should be united in making sure that everyone feels welcomed so that we can all get together in watching anime and solving the real problems, like why Crunchyroll is really bad at picking nominees for the Anime Awards.

Its been a while since I’ve written something on the longer side, and this was something that I personally felt like I needed to write. Just want to add, I know the Anituber Zeria did a video with a very similar topic, but I didn’t find out about it until after I finished writing this, so apologies about that. You can watch their video here.

So, here’s a question that I would love to here an answer to: What do you guys think, if anything, should change about the anime community? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you would like to support The Aniwriter or are just feeling generous, consider donating on Ko-fi or using one of my affiliate link to buy stuff:

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

What Bunny Girl Senpai Gets Right About Being a Teenager

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Bunny Girl Senpai, for as ridiculous as its title might imply that it is, is actually one of the better shows I’ve seen in a while. It’s writing is genuinely interesting and engaging, and it’s characters, while somewhat archetypical to the Slice of Life genre, have more than enough personality on their own to be story centers. It also happens to get a lot right about being a teenager in the modern world.

Screenshot 2018-12-03 20.36.21.png

One of the main things that it gets right is the stress of insecurity. As a teenager, sometimes it really does feel like the world out to get you, and that every minor inconvenience can be catastrophic because teenagers often care way too much. This can be seen clearly in the first arc of the show with Mai. Mai’s fear of being forgotten and not having enough attention manifests when almost everyone eventually forgets her, including Sakuta. Sure, Puberty Syndrome isn’t actually real, but that’s also kind of the point.

Puberty Syndrome as a storytelling mechanic is meant to show the exaggerated worry of teenagers in real life. Everyone has a different internal fear that manifests as something different.

Screenshot 2018-12-03 20.29.47.png

The other major thing it gets right about being a teenager is relationships. Whether they be casual friendships or romantic endeavors, almost every relationship in high school is important. The friend groups teenagers form in high school are often people they see every day and are likely to spend time out of school with. In Bunny Girl Senpai, Sakuta shows this extremely well. As was shown in one of the last few episodes, Sakuta has been friends with Futaba and Kunimi since middle school, and their friendship has remained strong throughout high school.

Screenshot 2018-12-03 20.31.12.png

Friendships with females can also become more complicated. Speaking from a lot of personal experience, I had many female friends that I was interested in dating because a lot of them were super cool. Sure, a lot of it probably had to do with hormones, but nevertheless, the feelings remained there. Those types of feelings can also be seen in the show’s second arc, in which Tomoe must pretend to be Sakuta’s girlfriend for almost a whole month, and ends up falling in love with him. Proximity to others can have a deep effect on how teenagers, and people in general, feel about each other, because the more you hang out with someone, the more you come to understand and appreciate certain things about them.

There are also a few details that feel a lot more accurate because of the technology available in 2018. One great example in Bunny Girl Senpai is when Tomoe is studying in her room but then pulls out her phone to watch a video on YouTube only to have an ad playing that features Mai. Seeing Mai then reminds Tomoe of her fake relationship with Sakuta. A small detail such as that, while not adding much on its own, does help with the atmosphere of the show.

At the end of the day, Bunny Girl Senpai is a Supernatural Slice of Life series so a lot of its events can be classified as unrealistic. However, in order to have a good Supernatural show, it does need to be based at least somewhat in reality, and Bunny Girl Senpai has that more than covered.

What do you guys think of Bunny Girl Senpai? Has the show been relatable to you in some way? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you want to support the Aniwriter through donations or are just feeling generous, consider buying me a coffee on Ko-Fi. Otherwise, thanks for reading and bye for now, Friendos!

The Top Five Best Studio Ghibli Movies

Welcome, weebs and authors alike, to The Aniwriter

Studio Ghibli is a company that needs no introduction, but that I am going to give one anyone just for the sake of understanding. Founded in 1985, the studio has continued to make incredible animated films for over 30 years. The studio is also famous for one of its founding members, Hayao Miyazaki, who has directed many of the studios most iconic films. Today, I thought I would talk about what I see as the five best Studio Ghibli films. There will not be a particular order to these films, because, at the end of the day, all of them are incredible.

Castle in the Sky

Castle in the sky

Director: Hiyao Miyazaki

One of the oldest and still one of the most interesting, Castle in the sky tells the story of a young boy trying to discover the mysteries of a strange castle named Laputa that supposedly floats through the sky. Along the way, he meets a girl named Sheeta who helps him in his quest to find the castle. The movie arguably has a much faster pace than many of its Ghibli contemporaries, and that’s what makes it interesting. Pazu meets Sheeta, and then very quickly the story accelerates, and before you know it they have found the castle. Even though I have already seen it a few times, It is one of those films that I would never mind watching again.

Princess Mononoke

Princess Mononoke

Director: Hayao Miyazaki

Arguably the most famous Studio Ghibli film, aside from Spirited Away, Mononoke is a story that brings environmentalism to the forefront in one of the most awesome ways possible. Ashitaka is a warrior from a small village who, despite killing an attacking demon, gets cursed, and will die if the curse is not lifted. After a long adventure and a giant, angry forest rampaging around, all of the characters, including Ashitaka, learn just how important nature really is. Miyazaki has long been a promoter of the environment in his films, and it absolutely works. The message is always a result of a well-told story combined with great animation, and never feels forced. Princess Mononoke is a great example of this in action.

Grave of the Fireflies


Director: Isao Takahata

Isao Takahata, Studio Ghibli’s other directorial half, is an often overlooked director, and Grave of the Fireflies is a great example. The movie tells the story of a brother and sister trying to survive a wartorn Japan in the final months of World War 2. To say this movie is emotional would be an understatement. Seita and Setsuko, the movie’s main leads, are not especially interesting by themselves, but their strong relationship during the war makes sense in the context of the story. It is also a story that still resonates strongly with the events of today. Be it the Syrian Civil War, the War in Yemen, or the dozens of conflicts happening around the world, it is important to remember those affected by these events.

Only Yesterday

Only Yesterday

Director: Isao Takahata

Funny enough, it was Only Yesterday when I had not seen this movie whatsoever. Having not heard anything about it before watching it, I did not have any expectations going into it, and I can honestly say that I came out amazed. Only Yesterday is not a particularly complex story, or one that tries to be incredibly deep. But, it does hit on a truth that affects all people: that eventually we all have to decide what our life means, and what we really want to do with it, and in that I can find much Solace.

The Wind Rises

The Wind Rises

Director: Hayao Miyazaki

Of all the films on this list, The Wind Rises is one that I am surprised was directed by Hayao Miyazaki. Being moreso a historical drama about the life of Jiro Horikoshi, who designed some of Japan’s most famous fighter planes, which does not sound like he would direct, it initially came across as being something I would not enjoy. But, in this case I was more than happy to be wrong. The Wind Rises is a wonderful film that uses its animation to express all of the different parts of Jiro’s life: His love for design, his work ethic, and his eventual relationship with Naoko. Since we know this is not going to be Miyazaki’s last film now, I won’t say much about his legacy here, but if this were his last film, that would be ok with me.

What are your Top 5 Best Studio Ghibli Films? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you want to support the Aniwriter through donations or are just feeling generous, consider buying me a coffee on Ko-Fi. Otherwise, thanks for reading and bye for now, Friendos!

The Fate Franchise is Confusing, But That Does Not Matter Too Much

Welcome, weebs and authors alike, to The Aniwriter

Watching one of the recent iterations of the Fate series Fate/Apocrypha has made me realize something: The franchise is kind of a mess. Between multiple spinoffs that have little to nothing to do with the main story, and aspects of the main story that seems to have only been added in as a weird gimmick, like King Arthur being a woman, the franchise feels peppered with a lot of nonsense. However, that does not mean that the franchise as a whole has not been entertaining.

credit to Reddit user u/SilverTitanium.

Do not get me wrong. In no way am I excusing a lot of the franchises bad writing elements. Its always important to criticize bad writing so that it can be made more logically consistent, and therefore better. As someone who wants to write for a living, I try and look for ways to improve my own stories every day. But, semi-bad writing and nonsensical story elements can be overlooked in many cases if what is being shown on screen is entertaining, and with the Fate/ franchise it certainly is.

A lot of the stories in Fate have, at least to me, always come off as more style over substance, fan-fic-esk brawls than shows that were attempting to say something revolutionary, and in that way they succeed greatly. Whether it be the original Fate/stay night by Studio Deen, and much more so the recent adaptations of Unlimited Blade Works and Heaven’s Feel done by Ufotable, the show’s action has been top notch. Each of the character’s powers, with a few exceptions, seem unique to them as a historical figure, and much of their motivations for fighting makes sense within the fairly imperfect story that is being told.


The same is true for the prequel story, Fate/Zero, in which Saber, one of the franchise’s flagship characters, looks her coolest ever. It is always entertaining watching her fight with Excalibur, and her power to make the sword invisible adds to the suspense of any given fight she is in.

The Command Seals are also an interesting mechanic in the show’s world. While fighting for the Holy Grail with their servants, Masters are given three command seals. When used, each of the seals gives a master the power to force his or her servant to perform one action. The action is performed near-instantaneously, which means there is no lag from communication.


Even the nonsensical spin-offs in the Fate Franchise like Fate-Kaleid Liner Prisma Illya, despite having not actually seen them, look like enjoyable enough watches. And while Fate/Apocrypha does not seem to fare much better in the writing department overall, its fourteen main character cast certainly does bring a lot to the table when brought together.

Let me reiterate: the point in writing all of this is not to say that the Fate/ franchise is bad, quite the opposite actually. Despite its often times lackluster writing, the franchise as a whole is thoroughly enjoyable, and if you have not actually seen any of Fate/, then just ignore everyone and start with the original by Studio Deen. #noregrets

But seriously though, how do you guys feel about the Fate/ franchise as a whole? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you want to support the Aniwriter through donations or are just feeling generous, consider buying me a coffee on Ko-Fi. Otherwise, thanks for reading and bye for now, Friendos!