Category Archives: Blog Updates

School is Out: What’s Next?

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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College is officially done, and hopefully, that means more consistent content coming your way. After got to endlessly feed the algorithm…yay.

In all seriousness, I am happy to be back, and now that I have time to write and watch/read new series, I will be able to focus on delivering some articles on a regular basis. With that being said, there are just a few things I thought would be worth touching on briefly.

Update: The Animated Observation’s Rating System

At the beginning of the year this year, I implemented a rating system for the series I review in depth. There were a number of reasons behind the change, which are outlined here. Looking back on it over the last few months, I am happy with the change. It gives me as a writer and the reader a way of quantifying my feelings without necessarily taking anything away from the review itself. As such, it will probably continue to be here for the time being. It may get a visual tweak along the way, but the primary system itself will remain intact.

Taking Part in K’s Tik Tok Battle Royale

Anyone not familiar with K at the Movies should change that very quickly. He’s a great personality who makes excellent content, and over the course of the next month or so, I’ll be taking part in one of his awesome challenges. I don’t know how much he wants to be revealed at this point, so I’ll keep my mouth shut for now, but be on the lookout for more on that soon.

Working on a Chapbook?

This is not as much related to Animated Observations but I did want to talk about it for just a bit. In addition to focusing more on writing here, I want to put some serious focus on my poetry. My basic timeline for this is to have some sort of complete chapbook/potentially complete collection by the end of summer, and then start considering my options for release once the new semester begins. I will also hopefully be documenting this journey over on Solidly Liquid, so those who have yet to do so, be sure to give it a follow.

What I’ll Be Covering

It has been a while since I did this, but I figured it would be fun to let my lovely readers in on what I’ll be covering in the upcoming weeks. This is not definitive by any means, and there is always the outside chance that I get distracted by some new shiny object, but I am hoping to get through these at least by the end of next month:

  • Attack on Titan (OADs and Season 4)
  • Arakawa: Under the Bridge
  • King’s Game
  • Wolf’s Rain
  • Kaguya-Sama (seasonal)
  • Spy x Family (seasonal)

This should hopefully give me enough to chew on for a bit before another seasonal rotation hits and the summer comes to an end.


What are you all up to? 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!

Thanks as always to Jenn for being an amazing Patron.

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

Starting One Piece, Anime’s Most Timeless Pillar

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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April Fools 🙂

The February 2022 Jon’s Creator Showcase #TheJCS

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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and welcome back everyone to the second-ever edition of the Jon Spencer Showcase hosted by Animated Observations.

As always, a quick explanation for those uninitiated. The Jon Spencer Showcase, abbreviated as TheJCS, is an event organized by members of the Jon Spencer community as a way of sharing each other’s creative endeavors. This can be anything from blog posts to videos, artwork, and really anything that one has worked on from the previous month. So, for this JCS, we’re looking at projects from January of 2022. If you would like to be a part of the community, you can do so using the discord link here.

Per usual, posts will be organized by general subject matter (i.e, anime, video games, etc.) for ease of browsing. With that being said, here are your community posts for this month!

Anime Fans & Children’s Media – A Look at Muteking the Dancing Hero – Jon Spencer/ Jon Spencer Reviews

In this fairly in-depth post, Jon from Jon Spencer Reviews talks about a subject that does not usually come up among more casual audiences: children’s anime. Specifically, he takes a look at why studying children’s media can be important, along with a show that is apparently a lot weirder than it sounds, that being Muteking the Dancing Hero. My personal experience with children’s anime is limited to a few shows that I have a bit of nostalgia for, such as Bakugan, Yu-Gi-Oh, etc. However, Jon’s post highlights a series that is both experimental and formulaic, but ultimately still does a lot right.

Masterpiece Anime Showcase: Tamayura ~More Aggressive~, A Thank You For the Past Year and Welcoming the Brand New Year – Infinitezenith/The Infinite Zenith

This impressively thorough piece details author infinitezenith’s relationship with a series that I had never heard of, Tamayura More Aggressive. Additionally, they give a detailed account of how the series affected them personally and how it also “helped [them] to take a step back and count [their] blessings at a time when my future seemed uncertain. It is a bit of a lengthier piece, but it is genuinely nice to read about how anime helps people through personal struggle, so for those that are into stuff like that, I highly recommend you check it out.

Jobless Reincarnation’s Rudeus Greyrat: The Long Hard Road. – Dewbond/Shallow Dives in Anime

Jobless Reincarnation was met with a lot of criticism upon its completion late last year, specifically for its main character Rudy. In this post, blogger Dewbond seeks to address that criticism by offering up an argument for why the series was not only a welcome departure from the isekai formula but also a unique approach to the isekai protagonist that has become the norm. Not everyone will necessarily agree with their conclusion, but it is a thought-provoking read nonetheless.

Fan Service: Is it Really Necessary? – Lynn/The Otaku Author

Fan service can often be a touchy subject in the anime community, and often invites a lot of conversation for merely existing. People can enjoy or not enjoy fan service, but Lynn is here to argue that regardless of that personal preference, fan service does have a reason to exist. This is another piece that is obviously not going to draw agreement from everyone but is a worthwhile perspective regardless.

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Top 10 Most-watched Donghua of 2021 in China – Yu Alexis/Yu Alexis

The space of increasingly popular Chinese Donghua is one that has alluded me for a long time. I would also be willing to bet the same is true for many of the people reading this. However, Yu Alexis is here to discuss the most popular of these series from 2021 and why they are doing so well. After looking into some of these series, I am genuinely curious about getting into Donghua, but before any of you do I highly suggest checking out their full list.

My Dress-Up Darling Episode 4 Review – Best In Show

Episode 4 of My Dress-Up Darling is right around the point where the show genuinely comes into its own. What in its initial couple of episodes felt a little shallow and painfully unfunny suddenly brought out the best in its two leads. Crow, of course, talks about this much better than I ever could and in a way that really highlights the episode’s strengths. Definitely a worthwhile read.

After Rain Comes Sunshine – Lita/Lita Kino’s Anime Corner

I do hope that in the year 2022 the anime community can still appreciate a good AMV every once in a while, yeah? Well, Lita is here to deliver. Using the 2018 anime After the Rain along with the song by Nickelback of the same title, she retells the story of the anime in the context of the song. It focuses on the difficult nature of the main characters’ relationship and how it may look weird from the outside, but that it should not influence their support for each other in a non-romantic context. Overall a great post and one that deserves some attention.

Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure: Phantom Blood Review – Tequila/Core Reviews

Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure has long been a cultural phenomenon, with people around the world enjoying anime and manga alike. However, Tequila has brought it back to the beginning, reviewing the show’s first season Phantom Blood. She discusses elements of the series like the relationship between Jonathan and Dio, and the series’ overall unpredictability. Overall, a great review, and one that I recommend.

Review – Fruits Basket – 1st Season 2019 – Courtney/The Anime Tourist

Fruits Basket is a series that for many in the anime community has some very fond memories associated with it. Well, Courtney is here to talk about the 2019 remake which, for the most part, was received fairly well. Does this also include The Anime Tourist? Well, you’ll have to read to find out, but regardless it is a great review. I highly recommend giving her review a read.

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How Anime Episode Reviews Capture The Moment and Promote Conversation – Karandi James/100 Word Anime

Recently, the conversation of how people enjoy anime has arguably become just as important as what anime they are enjoying. In their submission, Karandi takes the time to talk about episode reviews and why they are important to the community. The debate rests on the bigger divide which has occurred recently between companies like Netflix who traditionally release their series in batches and traditional anime release schedules which are usually weekly. Regardless of your opinion, it is an interesting discussion to have and definitely a worthwhile read.

Spoiler-Free Review: Sword Art Online the Movie -Progressive- Aria of the Starless Night – Matt/Matt-in-the-Hat

I’ll be totally honest: I have not watched anything Sword Art Online-related since I finished the first series back in 2014. However, its universe has expanded significantly since its debut in 2012. multiple seasons, spinoffs, and even movies, including the one Matt discusses in this review. While I will not give away his entire opinion, he does seem to think fans of the series will not be disappointed.

30 Best Cooking Anime Shows to Make You Drool! – YumDeku/MyAnimeGo

For better or for worse, it feels like a lot of people’s image of food-centric anime looks like Food Wars. This is not to say it is a bad show, but there are a lot of great series that inhabit this anime sub-genre. Luckily, Yum Deku is here to show everyone exactly that, as he goes through a laundry list of great series on the subject including one of my personal favorites Sweetness and Lightning. Given its length, I am sure those reading will also find something they enjoy.

Nora’s Weekly Anime Digest – Winter 2022, Week 3 – Nora/It’s Your Fault That I’m Not Popular!

It is crazy to think that the winter season of 2022 is already coming to a close relatively soon. However, It is always fun to take a look back to the beginning of a season. After all, some perceptions can change rapidly from episode to episode. This is why it was especially fun to read Nora’s thoughts on the winter season when there were only 2-3 episodes out. Anyone who is feeling that end-of-season nostalgia should check out this post.

Akebi’s Sailor uniform is okay (bit weird) – Roki B/Solitary Cubbyhole

Continuing our theme of the winter season, this post looks at a show that I think had a pretty collective response from the anime community of “foot fetish? foot fetish.” Still, as Roki points out, there are other things to appreciate such as the dynamic between the main character and her sister, while also giving off the typical “cute girl” vibe. I still recommend reading the entire post, as it is short and gets to the heart of the show very quickly.

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Anime Reviews: To Do or Not To Do? – Lyn/Tabibito’s Anistory and Beyond

I think it might be fair to say that most of us in the ani-blogging community, at least to some extent, take for granted the fact that we have an audience, to begin with. After all, not everyone approaches reviews in the same way, as is evidenced by Lyn’s post here. Sure, lots of us appreciate reviews and the perspective they bring, but not everyone reads them, nor is everyone necessarily a person who writes them. She provides a genuinely interesting perspective on criticism which I think is well worth anyone’s time.

Sabikui Bisco – Official English Sub – Scorpz/Scorpzgca

Writer Scorpz talks briefly about another Winter premier: Sabikui Bisco. It is a series set in post-apocalyptic Japan which was supposedly caused by mushroom spores. Bisco, wanted as a criminal for spreading these spores, is, in reality, using them to help return the earth to its previous state. Scorpz provides some key information as well as showcases the show’s trailer, so if this is a series that sounds interesting, definitely give it a look.

Anime Corner: Lupin the 3rd: The First Review – Chris Joynson/Never Argue with a Fish

Lupin the 3rd is a series with a lot of history behind it, and I do mean a lot, as its original manga was released in 1967. However, the series has continually been updated and redone in a variety of fashions, including in its latest film. Here, Chris Joynson of Never Argue with a Fish breaks down the film and gives his final opinion on the matter. Lupin is not a series I traditionally keep up with, but it was nice to read his thoughts regardless.

Celeste – Ellie/The Almighty Backlog

Make no mistake about it, Celeste is an indie video game darling. It has received nothing but praise since its release back in 2018 and has been released on virtually every console. Yet, for as much as the game seems to be loved, Ellie has a different take. While she certainly gives the game its due diligence, she also discusses the nature of games that are made challenging on purpose, and how not everyone plays games for a challenge, a conversation that has only gotten more widespread in the last few years. It is a substantive review, regardless, and highly worth the read.

Top 10 Cosy Comfort Characters For When You’re Feeling Under the Weather – Oona Tempest/Sweet and Spicy Otome Game Reviews

Hey, all you *check notes* “plague-infested couch gremlins…” Are you looking for some comfort characters? Well, then this is the right place. Otome enthusiast Oona Tempest has some great recommendations. At least, I think so? I have never actually played an otome game before, but I can definitely see how some of these characters would come off as fairly attractive. Regardless, give it a read.

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Ziggurat 2 – A Review – Static/Overage Gaming

In a gaming landscape that spans triple AAA developers to single-digit indie studio teams, it is actually pretty easy to find hidden gems. I get the feeling that Ziggurat 2 might be one such game. Writer Static talks about the sequel to the original Ziggurat, a game that focuses on rebuilding its namesake, a prison that houses magical creatures. They go pretty in-depth while focusing on and scoring the categories of graphics, sound, gameplay, and how much fun the game is. Idk, it has me pretty convinced, and I think those reading might be as well.

Moonrise [Game Review] – Matt Doyle/Matt Doyle Media

Want a werewolf story with visual novel mechanics, replayability, and good gender/sex representation? Well now you’re just being a little specific, huh? Still, Matt seems to have a good game for that. In this post, They talk about the game Moonrise, a romance werewolf story where choices matter and there are plenty of love interests to choose from. Those who enjoy this genre of game will probably get a kick out of it, but I highly recommend reading the whole post for a full breakdown.

8 Recommended Romance Webtoons – Nabe-Chan/Geeknabe

Oh, golly gee do I love me a good romance. It is a genre that has a pretty big market across both anime and, in particular, manga, webtoons, etc, and yet, there are probably plenty of those reading who are looking for more romance stories. Well, you’re in luck. This article from Nabe recommends some romance webtoons that she thinks many of those reading will enjoy. In particular, I found her description of Under the Oak Tree by Kim Soo-ji to be fairly enticing. Hopefully, there is also something on this list for all of you as well.

Manga Recommendations for Otome Game Lovers – Naja B./Blerdy Otome

Hopefully, after reading this JCS you’ll be set with recommendations for a while. Here, Naja gives some recommendations for those who also happen to be fans of otome games. There are a lot of great series on this list, but the one that stands out for me is definitely Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku. While I have yet to read the manga proper, its anime adaptation was a lot of fun, so imagine there to be plenty in the manga as well. Before reading that though, definitely check out the rest of Naja’s post.

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My Top 10 Most Anticipated Manga of 2022 – Alyssa/Al’s Manga Blog

Rather than regular recommendations, Alyssa talks about her most anticipated manga of the coming year, with the focus being on physical releases to North America. There is a lot to like on this list, as it has a lot of titles which I have heard a good amount of buzz over. I myself am looking forward to The Tunnel to Summer, The Exit of Goodbyes by Mei Hachimoku, although given how interesting it looks, I may end up reading the light novel instead. Regardless, she has some great taste and I highly recommend checking out this article.

First Manga Haul of 2022 – Takuto/Takuto’s Anime Cafe

It is always fun seeing what people are watching and reading, and what better way to do that than with a giant haul video? I have not seen a ton of these pop up on my YouTube page, partially because I am not as tuned into to mangaTube, but also because it seems that supply chain shortages are making them harder to do. Still, Takuto gets a lot of interesting stuff in this one. In particular, a series I am looking forward to checking out is A School Frozen in Time, which gives me a lot of Sunny Boy vibes (despite the fact that I have yet to finish it). Definitely give this video a watch.

Review – Love Story of Hoshino Zoo – Millia/The Tender Fujo

Sometimes, when a person is feeling down and they are not really sure what to do, all they really need is a story about anthropomorphic animals. In this post, Millia writes about a BL manga centered around a squirrel at the zoo. Well, to be more accurate it is about the animals at the zoo, which artist Kurihara can talk to. Definitely seems like a fun enough read, and I highly recommend reading Millia’s post.

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The Apothecary Diaries Review – Elizabeth Howie/Religiously Nerdy

Craving a mystery about a palace worker and her dreams of escaping her boring day job? It looks like this may be the series for you. Elizabeth Howie of Religiously nerdy writes about The Apothecary Diaries, a series that, on the surface, looks pretty normal. However, I also get the feeling that there is a lot more going on, especially with the main character MaoMao. I suppose I will just have to read and find out, and while I am doing that, read this post to find out more about the series.

Blu-ray Review – Red Angel – ManInBlack/MIB’s Instant Headache

War films are very often not about the wars themselves, but rather the tolls they take on the individuals involved. Red Angel, as ManInBlack discusses in this piece, is one such film. An enthralling drama about the horrific experiences of a nurse during the second Sino-Japanese War, it reveals the tragedy of “the effects of war on those whose role is crucial yet always seen as peripheral.” This review does a great job at breaking down the film into its baser elements while also understanding how they come together to be even greater.

Plurality: In Defense of Endogenic System – Leth/Yuki/Lethargic Ramblings

Life…is hard. Controversial statement I am sure, but it is true. However, I cannot imagine what it must be like living with two separate selves. In this post, Leth and Yuki talk about his and her experiences with Plurality and why those whose additional selves who were not born out of trauma, known as Endogenic Systems are valid. It is a subject in which I am nonetheless fairly ignorant, but the two of them do a great job at explaining regardless. Highly suggested reading for those who are interested in the topic.

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After So Long, Some New Music – Scott/Scott’s Muse

I am ashamed to say that I did not know that the mecha man himself also happens to do music?! Maybe it should not be that much of a surprise considering how talented and awesome he is. Regardless, Scott shares a bit of new music he has recorded, covering both jazz and classical music on the trumpet. All of it is genuinely very good and entertaining to listen to, so take five minutes and give it a listen.

Immersive Reading: How to Get the Most Out of Your Reading Experience – Megan/Nerd Rambles

I think it is fair to say that most of the people reading this are also fans of reading, otherwise, why are you reading a blog? However, when it comes to sitting down with a good book, is it possible people are doing it wrong? Ok, maybe not wrong, but as Megan argues, immersive reading can be a great way to enhance one’s experience with a piece of literature. It is something that I feel gets made fun of in a lot of sitcoms, mainly at the expense of middle-aged women characters, but there are definitely a lot of positives, so give this a read.


Thank you all for reading. I know this is coming out a bit later than usual, so I would like to apologize once again, and also say thank you for all of the wonderful submissions. The next Jon’s Creator Showcase will be hosted by none other than Art of Anime. For those who missed out this time, or those who want to participate again this month, feel free to submit here.

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!

Thanks as always to our amazing patron Jenn for the support!

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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Secondary Findings: Hades, All of Us Are Dead, Etc.

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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As much as I love talking about all of the things I review for this blog, there is also a lot of stuff that I watch, play casually that does not get its own dedicated post. This is either because I have yet to finish it or because it does not fit in with the normal stuff I talk about. So, we are back with another edition of Secondary Findings, a series where I do just that.

Hades

This game probably will end up getting a full review on this blog at some point. However, with the little free time I have already, it has been hard to dedicate the proper hours to actually finish it. On top of that, Hades is the type of game where exploring it in depth could mean going through multiple runs, as it has become the poster child for indie rogue-likes.

It is not hard to see why, though. Between the relatively straightforward gameplay, unique build paths for different styles, and the incredible fluidity with which to make combos. That is not even getting into the super-inspired character designs which re-imagine the greek gods and goddesses in a way that gives them a lot of charm. While I cannot speak to anything beyond a few hours of gameplay, it is fairly obvious why Hades has such a strong fanbase.

Lucifer and the Biscuit Hammer

Though the series has yet to get its recently announced anime adaptation, its 15 minutes of Twitter fame was enough to ensnare my interest, and so I decided to give its first volume a read. To my surprise, the hype felt mostly deserved.

Even with its incredibly convoluted plot about saving the world from a wizard and a giant hammer with the help of a girl who also wants to destroy the world, this shounen comedy has thus far been a delight. Its funnier moments are indeed funny, but in the moments where the series calms down and starts to do a bit of introspection, these moments of malice slowly creep in and reveal some things that really drive a lot of interest.

It is hard to say what exactly will happen from here, but Lucifer and the Biscuit Hammer is definitely a manga that I am going to pursue further. if those moments of darkness are any indication of what is to come, there will certainly be something worthwhile on the other side.

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Hyperpop

I generally try to avoid talking about music on this blog unless it is in the context of an anime or video game soundtrack since that is fairly outside my wheelhouse. Though, of course, I have made exceptions for albums and artists who have had a significant impact on my thinking, with the most recent example being From Me to You by Quadeca.

However, since this is a more casual series focused on the stuff I enjoy, it would be weird not to talk about this strange musical subgenre that has taken up a not-insignificant portion of my music diet. Anyone who has been paying attention to internet culture has probably at least heard the name 100 gecs, who are the most recent act to popularize hyperpop.

However, the subgenre goes has been developing a lot over the past couple of years, often with the artists themselves having a love-hate relationship with the label. Personally, what I love about it is the way it combines elements of EDM reminiscent of the early 2010s, as well as modern pop and hip-hop trends.

The song linked above serves as a good example of what a lot of modern hyperpop has leaned into. I have heard it described more than once as “a musical genre for people with ADHD,” and while I am not sure if I actually have ADHD, it does help scratch a certain brain itch when listening to it.

All of Us are Dead

All of Us are Dead is a Korean zombie horror series that was released on Netflix in a manner similar to the now hit series Squid Game. It focuses on a Korean high school where a new illness has broken out which rapidly transforms the students into zombies, and now they must survive while being quarantined inside the school.

This is another property I have yet to fully dive into, having only watched one episode as of writing. It does take a while to build to its crescendo, with the first episode clocking in at just above an hour in total runtime. Yet, even with that long run time, it still manages to set up a lot of unique storylines without feeling bogged down by the number of characters.

Of course, it remains to be seen whether or not the series can actually stick the landing, but considering the last semi-competent zombie story I consumed was roughly seasons 3-4 of The Walking Dead, I am excited to see where this goes.


What all have you been enjoying recently? 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!

Special thanks as always to our amazing Patreon supporter Jenn!

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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Not Keeping My Promises…

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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Well, unfortunately, I do not have anyone else to blame but myself here, so yeah…

For those wondering what this post is about, at the beginning of this year I set some goals for myself in a post that was about wrapping up 2021. One of those goals was to put out at least one video on my YouTube Channel for every month of the year. I figured it would be at least a few months in before managing to fail that, but I am very good about outdoing my own expectations.

So, in order to keep me motivated to write and create things, I thought “why not give myself a punishment?” then after thinking about it for a little longer, it became “why not let everyone else come up with a punishment for me?” Since it is primarily the people who consume what I make that I am accountable to, it only makes sense to invite some democracy into the process of torturing myself.

Thus, I’m leaving this up to my readers: Give me an anime/manga/movie/tv series/etc that you hate, some truly awful garbage, and I will commit to finishing it all the way through and writing about it when I am done.

I mentioned in my more recent update how my new rating system will likely have a more positive bend to it considering I don’t usually seek out bad media, but maybe we can test those limits a bit, yeah?

For this, I’ll take the 2 most liked comments under this article, as well as under the tweet linked below. Feel free to submit under both to double your chances of increasing my suffering.

Well, happy submitting!


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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Announcing the Jon’s Creator Showcase for February 2022, Hosted by Animated Observations

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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Welcome back, everyone! Though it was put on pause in January, the Jon’s Creator Showcase (#TheJCS) is officially back in action for February. A personal favorite community event of myself and many others, this event is all about celebrating each other’s work!

For those who are new, or who just have not participated in a while, Jon’s Creator Showcase is an event usually hosted by the many after which it is named, Jon Spencer, or members of his community. However, you do not have to be a member in order to participate. It simply involves taking a creative project you worked on in the previous month and submitting it. This can be anything from a blog post to a YouTube video or even art you’ve drawn. At the end of the month, all of the submissions get featured in one giant post made by yours truly.

In order to submit, all one has to do is tweet out the submission or reply with it to the tweet below and use the hashtag #TheJCS. Those who do not have Twitter are more than welcome to submit via email to theaniwriter@gmail.com

Submissions will be open for the entire month of February. This is to ensure that everyone gets a chance to submit and showcase their creative works. This means that the final post will probably be posted sometime at the beginning of March.

Any questions can be directed to me via the Twitter page linked above or the email mentioned previously. If you are not a member of the Jon Spencer discord and would like to join, please use this link. We talk anime, manga, video games, and plenty of other stuff.

Thank you to everyone in advance, as I look forward to seeing everyone’s work from January!


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!

Thanks again to our Patron Jenn for being awesome!

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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College Time Again, Tik Tok, and the Animated Observations Rating System?!

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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Well, another year has passed and man…it was not a good one. I will skip rehashing what I said in my last update, but this year is going to hopefully be a year of growth for Animated Observations. I have a lot planned for this blog, and I hope you’ll be excited about it as well. But first, the boring stuff.

College…

“Two semesters left until I finish my Bachelor’s degree” is a sentence that, at least subconsciously, I knew I was probably going to have to write at some point but never actually thought about, and yet, here I am. Those who have followed me for a while now will probably know that the start of a new semester usually leaves me at least a little bit busy. I generally try to prepare content ahead of time, but occasionally, such as last semester, it does not work out.

By the time this update sees the light of day, I will probably have already started school. However, for this semester one of my classes is entirely online, and I only go to campus 3 days a week. This will hopefully give me more time to focus on both writing articles, creating content, and also the small, unimportant task of looking for a job 🙂

Tik Tok

While I still very much enjoy blogging and my normal format of sharing my terrible anime/manga/game opinions, I do still want to branch out creatively, and so I have decided to be hip with the kids and make a Tik Tok for Animated Observations. I’m literally 22 years old and writing that last sentence has aged me at least 40 years.

“What kind of content are you putting out on Tik Tok?” a reasonable person might ask. To which the answer is: Idk, probably a bunch of memes, but in all seriousness, I am hoping I will have time to do shorter form reviews and maybe practice some editing along the way. It will be a major work in progress, so I will not blame anyone who decides that it is not for them.

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Introducing the Animated Observations Rating System!

Now, I have been writing and talking about anime and various other things on this blog under various names for the better part of four years, and while in some of those reviews I may have conceded some sort of numerical score, I have never used them consistently.

The reason I am introducing one now is to give people a more straightforward idea of how I feel about a particular piece of media. “The Observation Deck,” the format I have more or less settled on for reviews, is necessarily more chaotic and less structured than a typical review, bouncing between different topics that seem important to discuss. These categories/scores will be an attempt at giving a more direct answer of “is this a good piece of art” or “does it at least have some value.”

I also want to say upfront that nothing about the inclusion of these scores is going to fundamentally change the way I do my reviews, it will simply be an addition on top of all the things I talk about. As well, at least for the time being, this scoring system will only be used in longer form reviews and will stay out of essays and other reaction-based stuff such as “Initial Results.”

In favor of keeping this update relatively brief, I will quickly go over the categories, associated scores, and general philosophy behind each one. I have chosen to use a 0-100 scale and seven associated categories. The overall theme revolves around going from below the earth into outer space, with scores getting better in proportion with the metaphorical altitude. Without further ado, here they are.

0-15/100

30 Miles Deep

This is a category reserved only for the worst of the worst. A piece of media in this category has little to no redeeming qualities and is genuinely offensive to watch, read, or playthrough. It can burn under the pressure of the earth for all I care.

16-30/100

Crusty

A piece of media in this category is also extremely bad. However, unlike in 30 Miles Deep, there are maybe one or two ideas worth salvaging that are just executed very poorly.

31-45/100

Lost in the Ocean

While I may not like it that much myself, I can at least understand why someone who likes something in this range would enjoy it themselves. There is enough good or interesting here that I at least have to concede that. Something like Beastars, which I do genuinely dislike, would end up in this category.

46-60/100

Surface Level

While the phrase itself has taken on a number of distinct meanings in art discourse, the category of Surface Level in the context of my reviews simply means any show that has roughly as many positive qualities as it does negative, or at least could be argued as such. It is solid (all pun intended), but not much more than that.

61-75/100

Achieves Lift Off

This is the range at which I would say a piece of media generally starts consistently being more positive than negative. A show that Achieves Lift Off has a solid foundation but maybe does not do as much as it could in developing its story, characters, writing, gameplay, etc.

76-90/100

Space Bound

A piece of media that is Space Bound has built upon its positives even further. It achieves a lot, and may even be innovative in some spaces, but just barely misses the mark for being, in my eyes, perfect or near perfect.

91-100/100

Stellar

The category of stellar is reserved for media that does everything or virtually everything right. Since I usually do not go out of my way to watch things that I know people have said are bad, on top of my generally more positive bias, there will probably be a decent number of properties that end up in this tier. However, that should not at all diminish their quality, as I would still consider them the best of the best.

Of course, no rating system is perfect. These categories and number ranges are completely arbitrary. One show that is Surface Level and another that Achieves Lift Off might only be 2-3 points away. The categorical distinctions are more for portraying my general feelings while the numbers are there as a more absolute metric. Overall, I hope this new system will help to create a little more clarity in my reviews.


Have any questions about the new system or what I’m doing? Wanna let me know what you’ve been up to? Feel free to drop a comment down 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!

As always, thank you to our Patron Jenn, they are incredible!

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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The Battle of Fate/Discordia

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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Welcome, everyone. I have some important news I need to discuss with you. I, along with some blogging friends, have decided to do a bit of a role play in the style of a Fate/ battle royale, titled Fate Discordia. Now, being the competitive mf that I am, I would at least like to say that I did well. Thus, I need your help!

I, as a master, have called upon the servant of the caster class, Rembrandt. A master painter in his day, he wields the power of art, casting spells that reform the earth into his own image. If you want to read his full description, you can check out the document I made about him.

In order to help me win, I need people to vote for Rembrandt in this bracket-style tournament. You can vote on K at the Movies’ introductory post for the event, as well as in the Twitter poll linked below. Together, Rembrandt and I can win the holy grail!

Feel free to also vote on the other servants in that thread, as regardless of who wins, we want it to be a fun time. Thank you in advance, and I’ll catch you all tomorrow for a regularly scheduled post.


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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2021 End of the Year Wrap-Up for Animated Observations

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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Another depressing year has passed as far as current events and politics, with COVID still as threatening as ever Democracy is on the verge of collapse…but, it was also a great year for entertainment, specifically anime and manga. Even more than that, it has been a great year on this site, and I want to open up this post by just saying thank you all to everyone who dropped a follow and who read anything from me this year. The growth, while small on an absolute scale, has been relatively enormous.

In order to commemorate such an awesome year for Animated Observations, I wanted to go through and talk about some of the developments that happened this year. Additionally, I want to talk about my plans for the future and what it will mean for the site. A “Spotify Wrapped” for Animated Observations, if you will 🙂

The Stats

Like I alluded to before, Animated Observations went through Some pretty big growth relative to how it was last year, so I thought I would share some of that with everyone here (All of these are as of the writing of this post and will likely change by the actual end of the year).

  • Followers on WordPress: Around 300 at the beginning of the year to now 427
  • Views (this year): 8,970
  • Views (site wide): 33,514
  • YouTube Subscribers: 5 (compared to none at the beginning of the year)
  • YouTube views: 145 (Again, compared to none at the beginning)
  • Facebook: 85 followers
  • Twitter: 92 followers
  • Getting our first supporter on Patreon

So yeah, an absolutely amazing year for the site, and it has definitely felt rewarding even during the times when I was feeling burnt out or not in the mood to watch anything.

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What I am Most Proud of This Year

I put out quite a few posts this year, to say the least. Maybe not as much as some of my other fellow bloggers, but definitely a good amount. Additionally, I got the opportunity to collaborate with a bunch of people on some great projects. So I wanted to share a few of the posts I really enjoyed making this year.

Hosting #TheJCS

This year was my first time hosting Jon’s Creator Showcase, and it turned out much better than expected. I can genuinely say that I enjoyed every post that was submitted, and even found some things that were added to my never-ending list of media to consume. Actually going through and organizing something like this gave me some insight on just how hard it is to be a community leader, and so I definitely have a lot more appreciation for all of the work Jon does for the community.

Princess Jellyfish: An Incredible Series

Probably the most in-depth I got with a series this year was writing about Princess Jellyfish, a show that, when I first watched it, was definitely good, but didn’t grip me with its opening episodes in the same way. Upon re-watching it however, I found that Princess Jellyfish is both deeply emotional and incredibly socially aware for its time. Mixed with some of my own revelations about gender identity, this quickly became one of my favorite series of all time.

Puparia: The Best Short Film on YouTube?!

I am joking a little bit, but in all honesty, I have seen quite a few short films on YouTube, and none of them can really claim to bring the same visual experience that Puparia does, outside of maybe a few. Analyzing this film as well as watching the documentary about Tamagawa’s process was honestly some of the most fun I have had doing research for an article this year. Whatever he ends up doing next, rest assured I will be there to talk about it.

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Blog Goals for 2022

I would love to capitalize on the success of this year and continue strong into the next, so here are some goals that I hope to works towards over the course of 2022. I guess you could also call these my New Year’s Resolutions as well.

Hitting 1000 followers on WordPress

1000 is definitely a big number for where Animated Observations is right now, and If I am being completely honest, I do not expect to hit it even by the end of next year. However, a big part of all these goals is to be more optimistic about my own abilities and the content I make here. So, whether or not I actually get there, I am making it my goal.

Hitting 500 followers across the social media platforms

In line with the previous goal, a reality creating things on the internet is having a strong presence on social media, and so I hope to do just that. Again, I am not realistically expecting this to happen, but having a strong goal to work towards gives me more motivation.

Making More YouTube Videos

This is the one I feel most strongly about considering how much I have utterly failed at it in the past. Thus, I am going to try and commit myself to make at least one video a month so that there is at least some consistency on the channel. Thus, if I fail in goal, there will be some sort of punishment, which I have yet to work out, but that will be posted publicly. So yeah, even more motivation.

Doing More of What You Want

Since I am nearing the end of this post, I want to say thank you again, since it definitely cannot be said enough. Having any amount of people wanting to read the things I write, let alone 400, is crazy, so it is greatly appreciated. As such, while I will continue making stuff I like, I also want to incorporate more of what you, my readers, want to see. I plan on releasing a sort of survey in the coming week asking those kinds of questions. For example, while I do not enjoy doing seasonal episode reviews as much as other forms of content, if that is what people want to read/watch, then I have no problem committing myself to that.

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Personal Goals for 2022

As much as I want to see Animated Observations grow, I do also have a life outside of making content, and so here are few things that I personally would like to achieve.

Losing Weight

It feels like a big part of my lack of motivation sometimes comes from my lack of energy, which is only further egg-on by my size. While of course I want to look my best, and I don’t shame anyone who is my size, being a bigger person definitely comes with some downsides. I have not weighed myself in a while, but usually my weight sits somewhere between 250-260. Thus, I’m hoping to drop at least 10-20 pounds come this time next year.

Getting Published

Whether it be self-publishing my work or going through an established outlet, I really want to get some of poetry published in 2022. Some of you who follow both this blog and Solidly Liquid will probably have noticed that my other blog has not been productive for most of this year. This is because, while I have been writing stuff, I feel as though my creative direction was not firmly established. However, that problem has since been solved, and thus I know exactly where I want to go with my work. After that, I am hoping to work on some short stories as well, and potentially get back to writing my novel that has been on the backburner for two and half years.

Conclusion

It feels hard to say that 2022 will be a good year overall, but given how far Animated Observations has come already, I can confidently say that 2022 should be a good year for us, at least.


I’m sure it is annoying by now, but just wanted to throw in one final thank you and say that I hope you all have a great Holiday season.

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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A New Semester Begins

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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I have mentioned a few times over the last few weeks. However, since I know everyone is also busy around this time of year, and since I would like to have a bit of a buffer window for content, I figured would do a bit of an update on my current situation.

Back to School

By the time this gets released, I will have already started back college. I can’t really say whether or not that is a good or bad thing at this point, but one thing I can say is that I will be a lot busier than I have been. As always, that means I cannot guarantee that the same schedule I have been using will be maintained. Luckily, though, my motivation has been a lot higher, both to watch shows and to write, and since my responsibilities will not be as split between extracurriculars, it should be less of a problem.

Also, for those curious, here are a few of the series I plan on covering over the next couple of months:

Anime

  • Eureka Seven: Astral Ocean
  • Evangelion: Rebuild Movies
  • Aquatope of the White Sand
  • Sonny Boy
  • Honey and Clover (I completely forgot about this one)

Video Games

  • Hearthstone
  • Smash Ultimate
  • Robotics;Notes

So, yeah, look forward to that.

New Series?!

Yes! Maybe?

I have not been the greatest when it comes to delivering on things, but assuming I can find some good material, which I already have a bit of, this should end up being pretty fun, if nothing else. I do not want to give away to much for those who are not already in the loop, but let’s just say there will be a lot of laughs to go around.

Streaming

Unfortunately, or fortunately I guess depending on your perspective, if and when school does end up getting busy, streaming is probably going to be one of the first things I cut back on. Do not get me wrong, I still very much enjoy playing games, and I still want to add more of an anime themed element to my streams. However, it is not my number one priority at the moment. I will still be doing it when I have time, but not all the time.


So yeah, that’s my life right now. What do you guys have going on? 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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