Tag Archives: Animated Observations

Real Neat Blogger Award – Guess I’m Pretty Cool Again

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

Its been a while since I’ve responded to a blog award of any kind, but thank you to Ospreyshire for the nomination. Here are the rules:

  • Put the award logo on your blog.
  • Answer the 7 questions asked by the person who nominated you.
  • Thank the person who nominated you and add a link to their blog.
  • Nominate any number of people linking to their blogs and let them know you nominated them by commenting on their blogs.
    -Come up with 7 questions for the people you nominated.

Alright, and here are the question Opresyshire has for me:

1. Who is your favorite poet?

As of right now, Rudy Fransisco. He writes a lot of amazing stuff.

2. If you could make a musical movie, which artist or band’s music would you use and what would the plot look like?

I’m assuming by musical movie you mean something where the music is more integrated and important to the movie at large. In that case, I would probably go with a band like PVRIS who has a more Rock/Electronic sound. As for the plot, It would probably end up being a more Shinkai-esk love story, but with more of a focus on side characters and the setting.

3. Which country would you want to visit that you’ve never been to before?

I definitely would like to go somewhere in Europe at some point. Maybe Germany or somewhere in the UK, not entirely sure though.

4. Which book would you like to see adapted as a movie or TV show? This can be a novel, novella, novelette, graphic novel, manga, or any form of literature.

My first Instinct would be to say No Game No Life, but I think a lot of it would have to be rewritten for a global audience to the point where it wouldn’t be the same story anymore. Still, it would be interesting to see someone make the attempt.

5. What is your favorite instrument to hear in music?

Electric Guitar, just because its not very often that it is utilized

6. If you had the power to give an unknown or under-appreciated musician the ability to have one of their songs to be a #1 hit, what musician/singer/band would it be and what song would it be from them to temporally get rid of the typical mainstream Top 40 doldrums?

Aesop Rock, easily. Definitely one of the best rappers know one knows about.

7. What is the worst case of protagonist centered morality you’ve seen in a movie, story, TV show, etc.? For those not familiar with the term, let me put it to you this way. What is something you’ve seen a heroic character do that was bad and would never get away with it if they were a villain?

Tbh, I’ve thought about it for a while, and I can’t come up with anything super egregious. I guess the amount of people they kill in Stranger Things is a bit questionable, but even then a lot of those situations are pretty justified.

And now, here are my questions:

  1. What’s the worst experience you have had at a convention(assuming you’ve been to one?) If not, what’s the worst experience you’ve had interacting with members of a fandom?
  2. How has your favorite piece art, be it a book, movie, TV series, etc, affected you as a person?
  3. Aside from blogging, what hobby, besides what you write about, takes up a significant portion of your time?
  4. How has writing on a blog affected you work outside of blogging?
  5. What do you believe to be the most important element of a good story?
  6. What is your favorite Podcast? Or, favorite music album from the last year?
  7. Is there such a thing as a Universal Morality? I.E. a set of moral codes that apply in all cases.

And now for the nominees. Since I know this award has been going for a while, anyone who wants to respond can do so, but I won’t nominate anyone specifically.

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!

Fire Force Episode One Reaction

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

I talked about in one of my recent posts how I had a lot of hope for Fire Force due to it being from the same creative mind that gave us Soul Eater, Atsushi Ookubo. Soul Eater was, if nothing else, a fun action adventure with a cool cast of main characters. Its quality has remained for as long as its been around, and is still famous even among newer anime fans. So, does Fire Force live up to that? Well, so far, yeah.

For those who are not aware, Fire Force focuses on a future where for an unknown reason people are spontaneously combusting, and turning into creature known as Infernals. However, as time goes on, people with the power of Infernals while retaining their human form emerge. One of these people, a boy named Shinra, has the ability to create fire from his feet, and decides to join Fire Force Company 8. who help stop Infernals.

Despite there only being one episode so far, Fire Force still comes out of the gate as incredibly impressive. One of the things that makes it so impressive so far is its concept. The idea that anyone at any time could just turn into an Infernal creates a world always filled with tension and what ifs, because nobody knows if it will be them. It also means that there can be a lot of interesting story beats that the main cast will be able to focus on.

The other main thing that makes it great so far is the main character Shinra. Even in just the first episode there are a lot of things that make him unique. His family got killed in a fire he created with his powers, and the fact that he smiles when he’s nervous, something he literally cannot control. I would comment on the rest of the Company 8 crew, but I think they still have not had enough time to flesh themselves out as much as Shinra. However, for the first episode, they were pretty cool.

Overall, I do not have any complaints. It might be fair to say that the first episode was a little goofy for the level of seriousness the show is trying to go for, but it still did not ruin the episode, and it mainly came from Shinra, which is understandable given his condition. I definitely look forward to continuing the show.

How do you all feel about Fire Force? Let me know in the comments.

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

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

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

OWLS July “Technology” Post: Psycho-Pass, Technology, and the Reality of Privacy and Justice

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

I don’t have a whole lot to say for this intro, other than just introducing the topic for this month, which is Technology:

For this month’s topic, we will be discussing how technology impacts our relationships with others and how it improves our lives (such as in communication, education, and etc.) by exploring the technology used in various anime and pop culture worlds.

As always, be sure to check out posts from my other lovely OWLS friends who will be posting before and after me, and for this month that will be Aria and Takuto, and try checking out our posts from last month as well.

With that said, here is the post:

In an age where technological advancement has increased rapidly over a relatively small period of time, many take for granted that same technology and its wide-scale usage and application. Another thing people often take for granted are the values that technology holds. Now, many might respond with the idea that most technology is value-neutral, and can be used in both good and bad ways, but what if it was technology was determining and enforcing values?

Enter Pyscho-Pass, the story of a society governed and orchestrated by the Sibyl System, a technology that scans the brain and assigns a score based on a person’s likelihood of committing a crime. The main story centers around Akane, a new member of the police force assigned to be an Enforcer, someone who uses a weapon known as a Dominator to catch those the Sibyl System has determined to be a threat and even kill them if necessary. The main villain of the show’s first season is named Makishima, a man whose aim is to destroy the Sibyl system, and also someone who is able to avoid detection by it, due to being Criminally Asymptomatic.

It is easy to see the Sibyl System as just fantasy, and that nothing like it could ever possibly come to life, but, as this article from Purdue Global points out, with a rise in the technology used to commit crimes, there is also a rise in the technology used to stop it. For example, computers have enabled the widespread adoption and application of Rapid Identification Systems, store a wide variety of data related to a person’s criminal history. Technology such as Drones can even help stop crime in real time by giving police an aerial view of a situation. Now, in a lot of cases, these things can be considered good, and worth pursuing. However, the government and those agencies in charge of protecting citizens are not always as noble as they may appear. 

On the other side of the equation rest things like PRISM, a program under the National Security Agency (NSA) that was originally intended to gather intelligence on citizens of other countries. However, the reality of the program is quite different. In 2013, NSA contractor Edward Snowden leaked information from inside the agency that suggested those working there had “direct access” to major technology companies such as Microsoft, Google, and Facebook, meaning those working at the NSA had the ability to look at millions of people’s data without them knowing. In other words, PRISM Constitutes one of the larges violations of the fourth amendment in U.S. history. 

The Sibyl System is similar in many ways. It is a giant agency free from outside pressure that is working to rein in criminals through extremely questionable methods. In fact, much of what actually determines a person’s “latent criminality” in Psycho-Pass in never really well explained, and at the end of the first season, it is revealed why. Akane, after a long battle with Makishima, discovers that the Sibyl System is actually made of brains of individuals who are also Criminally Asymptomatic. At this point, it becomes clear to Akane that the system she thought stood for Justice and fairness is, in reality, much different, and that maybe Makishima’s plan was not so crazy after all.

The reality is that while technology can be used for good, it can also be used by governments to help in the violation of people’s rights. Technology’s infinite possibilities, while tempting to pursue in the short term, should always be managed with a long term vision of having people benefit from it. 

How do you guys feel about Technology? About Pyscho-Pass? Let me know in the comments. If you guys would like to support Animated Observations consider donating on Ko-fi or through Paypal:

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!

Dr. Stone Episode One Reaction

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

The summer season is here and the first episode of one of the most hyped shows both of the season and the year is finally out. Dr. Stone, who’s anime announcement came earlier this year, is now officially available on streaming platforms, and it is time to talk about it.

Dr. Stone focuses on a world in which everyone has been turned to stone, after a mysterious green light appears. The show then opens on Taiji, who, during the opening moments of the show, was trying to confess his love to one of his best friends Yuzuriha, and reawakens alone in a cave. Taiji soon discovers his genius friend Senku, and together the two work to survive and eventually rebuild humanity.

While the first episode mostly focuses on Taiji’s struggle in wanting to revive his friend, it is pretty clear that the show’s main character is Senku, the scientific genius. However, I do also appreciate the contrast brought by the two of them together.

Taiji, as Senku says, is clearly the bronze of their operation, doing all of the heavy lifting and dirty work, while Senku is the brains. Each of the two contribute what they can, and together they solve problems. This kind of dynamic right off the bat makes the first episode not only interesting, but inviting. It allows for a bit of relaxation before the main conflict to come.

Another aspect of the first episode I enjoyed was how each of the characters had their personalities established quickly and effectively. Taiji, through ignoring Senku’s assistance in confessing to his friend, showed how earnest and straightforward he is. Meanwhile, Senku showed numerous times throughout the episode just how smart he is, and also how much he values science, saying near the end that he “wants to beat fantasy with science.”

This would be the part where I criticize the show, but to be honest, there is not a whole lot Dr. Stone did wrong. The most I could say is that starting with Taiji even though Senku does not make a lot of sense, but even then it was still a good setup.

Dr. Stone’s first episode was fantastic. It established the story and its characters well, and did not do a whole lot wrong. Overall, I am excited to see where the series goes.

What are your thoughts on Dr. Stone? Let me know in the comments.

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

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

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

The Lion Cub Can Grow Again: Season One Episode Eight

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

With another episode gone by, March has once again proved just how poignant it can be. Episode eight continues where the last one left off and picks up on another important story line at the end. The show so far has been fairly moderately paced, moving between liter and darker moments without much uncomfortable juxtaposition, and episode eight once again continues that trend.

The opening third of the episode continues where the very end of episode seven left off, with Nikaidou teaching Hina and Momo shogi using a well-drawn picture book. Wondering where the book is from, Rei investigates it only to realize that Nikaidou himself drew and wrote book. After finishing for the night, the two walk home, only for Nikaidou to invite himself into Rei’s apartment. It is interesting to reflect on their arcs as characters from the perspective of someone who’s already seen the show, and to remember how much Rei did not care for his eventually best friend in the beginning.

Another important thing to note about Nikaidou as a character is just how much he cares about the people around him, as well as Shogi. As Rei later finds out, Nikaidou is dealing with his sickness pretty much all the time, even when he was doing commentating during Rei’s match. He also finds out that, for as hard as it is to deal with this sickness and do what he loves, Nikaido still finds time to help spread what he loves to others.

The show also lets us know that Rei is still thinking about his dad. While walking home the day after Nikaidou stays over, Rei fondly remembers him and his dad playing Shogi, particularly when he was focusing on the game and would lean back and forth with his hand on his face. It is at this point that Rei remembers that the reason he plays Shogi in the first place is because of his father.

It is in the later third of the episode where Rei meets Kyoko for the first time in person in the show. After returning home one night Rei finds Kyoko standing outside his front door, wanting to come inside. Rei is of course, reluctant, but after not having much of a good reason to keep her house, she lets him in.

It is also important to remember, though, that the reason Rei is so reluctant is because Kyoko was extremely abusive to Rei both emotionally and physically as a kid.

Kyoko ends up staying the night after pretty much refusing to go home at all. The two get ready for bed, with Rei asking about her boyfriend. Kyoko tells him that the two are still dating, despite the fact that the show gives a flashback to when her boyfriend beat him up.

Kyoko then leans over into Rei’s bed to check if her boyfriend left any scars. One of the more interesting tells about Kyoko from this episode happens when Rei asks if her boyfriend ever gets violent, to which she replies no, and if he did she would kill him, with tenseness of the situation implying she is totally serious.

The episode ends with the two waking up, and Kyoko leaving, but not before implying that Rei should lose his rank-deciding match that day. To me, this episode alone is enough to indict Kyoko as a toxic person in Rei’s life, to say nothing of previous knowledge.

One of the things that makes March such an engaging and interesting series, among many things, is its structure, combining the feel of both episodic and story-driven series into one, and episode eight is a prime example of that, as well. The show reveals a bit of what goes on in his day to day, as well as developing Rei’s relationship with both Nikaidou and Kyoko in a satisfying way. Overall, a fantastic episode.

Final Thoughts: Kakegurui

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

It seems as though the show I will be talking about today left just as quick as it came. Kakegurui was indeed an action packed gamble fest, just as advertised, and while my feelings on the show overall are somewhat mixed, there was still plenty that had me enjoying it from beginning to end, including anime’s favorite gambling girl Yumeko.

Source: Heroxyz on Deviant Art

With that being said, here are my final thoughts:

Gambling has Stakes, Usually

One of the criticisms that was levied against the first season was that it quickly went from an interesting take on the gambling genre to a sort Shonen power fest in which the bets got bigger and more unnecessary for seemingly no reason other than trying to cheaply raise stakes. While I don’t fully agree with that criticism, I can certainly understand where it comes from. The show’s first season started out pretty harmlessly, with Yumeko showing that she knows a thing or two about gambling, but by the end of it, people were literally betting away their life in order to play. Now, the reason I don’t fully agree with the criticism is because of Yumeko, who seems to be representative of gambling herself. She’s unpredictable, insane, and always willing to go as far as possible to get the most thrills, and she throws herself on everybody, driving them to go as far as humanly possible. Indeed, Yumeko is the toxicity of gambling embodied in a high school girl, and in that context the insane stakes actually make a lot of sense.

Creating Investment Through Facial Expressions

One of the more consistent, and arguably more famous, elements of Kakegurui is the famous faces of the characters in the show. When any of them are feeling a strong emotion, or are getting more emotionally invested in their gamble, their faces contort in extremely animated ways. The most famous of these faces is, of course, Yumeko’s herself, but there are plenty of other notable ones.

These faces are effective in a couple of different ways. One, because of their exaggerated nature, it becomes extremely easy to tell the emotions that the characters are feeling, and two, because these faces are generally not pleasant to look at, they make it much easier to feel what the characters are feeling, because in that way they are much more human.

Where Does Ryota Stand in All This?

From the very beginning Ryota has always kind of seemed like an irrelevant character in Kakegurui’s story, which is why the fact that he still has so much screen time kind of bothers me. The only real purpose he’s had in the series in either being Yumeko’s play thing near the end of season one, or helping her by calling other people to come gamble in her place, i.e. Mary near the midpoint of season two. I do think that he is also maybe representative of something, in the same way that Yumeko is, but for as much as I have thought about it nothing really comes to mind. I also do not think he is a bad character, mostly that he’s underdeveloped, which brings me to my last section:

Season 3

As the show has now caught up with the source material that spawned it, the possibility of a season three soon is unlikely. Because of this, my feelings about the ending are as follows:

I do also hope they do something with Ryota and allow him to grow as a character, cause otherwise he will also be boring and not good.


Kakegurui is a deceptively enjoyable show. Despite having a few somewhat grading downfalls, the show is still enjoyable enough to watch all the way through and feel like it was worth your time, especially if you like anime that revolve around gambling and games. Give it a watch if you have time.

What do you guys like about Kakegurui? Let me know in the comments below. If you would like to support Animated Observations, consider donating on Ko-fi or through paypal:

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!

Final Thoughts: Aggretsuko

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

The first season of Aggretsuko was a show that I enjoyed thoroughly. Now that season two is out on Netflix, I got a chance to watch it while it was laying in my bed with literally nothing else to do. I was definitely hoping season two would live up to the first, and on that front I can say with confidence that it did. However, aside from Aggretsuko as a show being generally good, here are some more of my final thoughts.


As much as I think relatability, like the word “dark” has become an overused buzzword in reviews and commentary, for which I myself am also guilty, I do still think it a lot of contexts that it is important, especially in a Slice-of-life context. Retsuko, despite being a much different person, and living in a much different scenario, is someone that I relate to a lot, especially in the realm of self-confidence and goals. She has friends, but doesn’t have a whole lot of interests or goals, and that is definitely something I have experienced. However, its not only Retsuko. Haida, Retsuko’s office friend, is also relatable in a lot of ways. For example, when he asks Retsuko to go out with him, only to get rejected. Haida, for a lot of season two is left in the support role, still having feelings for her, but also still wanting to be a good friend. Even Anai, the newest character in the series, is somewhat relatable. His fear about not being able to make it in an oppressive corporate environment makes him paranoid, and I can definitely say cheers to that, brother!

Retsuko as a Metalhead

If you know anything about the show, its probably that a lot of Aggretsuko’s, more so in its first season, revolving around Retsuko’s secret love of Metal music and karaoke. Whenever she is sad, angry, or otherwise feeling negative, she generally defaults to hitting up a karaoke bar after work and screaming her lungs out. Eventually, Retsuko finds friends in the form of Washimi and Gori who help her work out her problems. Despite not being that big a fan of metal, I actually quite enjoyed a lot of the musically bits, especially when used as a comedic punchline. One of my favorite parts was probably near the end of season one where Retsuko goes to an office party which just so happens to have Karaoke. Retsuko makes a very drunk decision, screams her brains out, and insults her boss Ton while doing so. She later realizes that no one remembers because they were also drunk, and so she lets out a huge sigh of relief. It is one of the funnier scenes in the entire series.

Conflict, Resolution, and Marriage

One of the more interesting internal discussions that Aggretsuko has in its second season is about the concept of marriage. Near the end of the second season, Retsuko’s super rich visionary CEO boyfriend Tadano tells her that she does not want to get married, but that he still wants to spend the rest of his life with her. At first, Retsuko is conflicted, not sure if she is willing to accept just being together. Later, Retsuko confronts Ton and tries to hand him her letter of resignation after being gone from work for almost a week. However, Ton can tell something is wrong, and advises Retsuko that she should stand up for what she believes in and not let others make decisions for her. Retsuko, with the assitance of Haida, Washimi, and Gori, confronts Tadano, letting him no that its marriage or nothing.

It is definitely a timely discussion. The reality is that many in both the millennial generation as well as Gen Z are much less inclined, for a wide variety of reasons, to get married. It is a symbol of permanence, a commitment to another that is supposed to last a lifetime, but as much as some might like to, many in these generations are not in a position to get married. Economic conditions, both in Japan and the U.S. are getting worse by the day, and it is becoming harder for regular people to afford basic things, and as such most people are not focused on marriage. However, another reason marriage is less appealing is that many more people, especially women and certain minorities, also feel empowered to be free and independent due to many more people having access to higher education, and as such marriage is less appealing from that perspective as well, because it ties you to someone.

Retsuko, on the other hand, views marriage as an institution of stability. Being that she does not know what she wants to do with her life, Retsuko sees marriage as a way to not only to be stable, but also as way to become invested in another person, and even more people if she were to have kids. Its a strange, yet understandably pure feeling. It is also very #relatable.


Retsuko is one of the best new Slice-of-life comedies to come out in a while. Its first season was captivatingly funny, while hinting at a lot more to come, and the second season felt like the perfect delivery on that more to come. Overall, it is absolutely 100 percent worth your time.

What parts of Aggretsuko did you all enjoy? Did you enjoy it at all? Let me know in the comments below. If you would like to support Animated Observations, consider buying me a coffee on kofi:

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!

Animated Observations Update #2: New Blog and What I’ve Been Up To

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

Well, here I am, back again with very little to report. I wish I could say I have been up to a whole lot, but I haven’t been. Anyway, lets get into everything I need to tell you all about.

Before that, though, I’ve decided to make my updates monthly instead of biweekly. I feel it will make for more interesting update posts when I have more things to report back on. If something comes up that requires an immediate answer to, I will just make a separate post.

Solidly Liquid

First up, if you followed me for my poetry/short stories, then I would highly suggest going over to my new blog, Solidly Liquid, as that’s where I will be posting that type of content from now on. As of right now I have been slowly re-uploading some older poetry, but I will get back to posting new stuff extremely soon.

Summer Anime Season

The summer anime season will be here within a matter or weeks, and I am definitely looking forward to at least a few of the new shows, so do expect to see some episode reactions coming soon.

A New Hobby Approaches…

If you all are following me on Twitter, than you probably know that I’ve gotten really into Smash Bros Ultimate since I got a switch. I’m still pretty bad, but its something I enjoy playing, and also enjoy watching a lot. At this point my goal is to get good enough to make it to Grand Finals at a locals, so hopefully in time I can succeed at that.

That’s all I have to talk about right now. Thanks for reading, and stick around for great anime content/discussion.

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Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

The Lion Cub Can Grow Again: Season One Episode Seven

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

Welcome back, friends, to my March Comes in Like a Lion re-watch/analysis. In the last episode, Rei explains how events led to the present, and his current feelings of isolation and stagnation. The show had also revealed in episode five a lot of the emotional, physical, and possibly even sexual abuse Rei’s adopted sister Kyoko had been putting him through while they were living together. Also, Hina has a crush and can’t deal with actually talking to him.

Arguably the most important part of the episode in terms of character development comes during “Child of God (Part Three),” where Rei talks to Hina’s crush and middle school baseball star, Yuusuke. It is here where Rei is surprised to learn that Yuusuke knows who he is. After, Yuusuke recognizes Rei as a professional Shogi player since middle school, he asks him why it is Rei decided to go back to high school. Previously, Rei’s teacher Takashi had pondered with him on this same subject, noting that Rei didn’t need to come to school to learn, and thus deducing that he must have come for connections.

When answering Yuusuke, Rei more or less says the same thing, emphasizing that he didn’t want to run away and then have regrets.

Its important to note that Rei also says that this encounter also made him feel a lot more comfortable, and that getting to talk to Yuusuke helped him understand and deal with his own feelings a little better. which makes sense. People often feel better talking about there problems to those who they do not know very well, because it take away any feeling of judgement from those they care about.

The next part of the episode happens after both Yuusuke and Rei both agree to meet again on Saturday with Hina. Hina is, of course, extremely nervous about having her crush over, but nonetheless it happens. It is here where Rei has another interesting experience. Yuusuke shows Rei a video of him playing live on TV, to which Hina and Momo respond with surprise, as they did not know he was a professional player. Yuusuke asks him about a match which he had lost, and why he made the move that was a losing move. Rei, aware that the move he made was in fact a losing one, again answers honestly.

However, what sets Rei off into one of his most emotional displays in the series so far is when Nikaidou, acting as a commentator, yells at him to “treat him and his Shogi better.” Rei then proceeds to yell at Nikaidou through the TV screen. In this scene, its pretty obvious why Rei is angry. He still feels stuck, with Shogi as the only thing he has been attached to for most of his life, but yet resents it because of his adopted family. For Nikaidou to essentially just say “do better” as if its that easy is, of course, a little patronizing, to say the least.

Another not insignificant part of the episode from the same section comes when Hina starts laughing when he gets angry. For Hina, seeing Rei as energetic about the whole situation as he was was probably a relief, considering what she has learned about his past up until this point. It is also an interesting parallel to how Rei described Hina at the beginning of the chapter, mainly that she is usually always energetic.

The last section of the show involves Rei teaching Hina about Shogi after she asks him to do so. However, Rei is not that great at explaining, so Nikaidou, who tagged along, steps in to help. There is not a whole lot going with this section of the episode, but still there is an important takeaway, mainly that Rei is now involved enough in Hina’s life that she has become interested in what he does. Now, some might respond to me pointing this out and say, “well, yeah, that’s character development,” and those people would not be wrong. However, considering what goes on later in season two, I think it has a lot of extra significance.

How do you guys feel about the series up to this point? Let me know in the comments below. If you would like to support Animated Observations, consider buying me a coffee on Kofi:

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!

Final Thoughts: Neon Genesis Evangelion

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

Well, its been a long time in the making, but with its recent arrival on Netflix I was finally able to watch one of the most iconic anime of all time: Neon Genesis Evangelion. As of writing this post I have yet to watch End of Evangelion, the sequel film which, by many critics accounts, is supposed to be the “proper” ending, not because I want to be a contrarian, but rather because I wanted to absorb the original for what it is. With that said, here are my final thoughts on the show.

Evangelion’s Animation

The most common criticism I heard from people who saw Evangelion and who had talked about the show was its horrible animation, and the long sequences of time where literally nothing happens. At first, I thought this was just a really long-running joke within the anime community, but as I watched the show I started to realize that, well, those people were not kidding. In fact, there are a lot of scenes that have still frames that last up to thirty seconds, sometimes even longer. This becomes even more prevalent towards the end of the show, with the last few episodes being particularly bad. There were definitely some parts that could be dramatically justified in being still frames, but even then it was used far to often for it to not be a negative.

Evangelion, Religion, and Acknowledging My Lack of Understanding

Since I’m talking about a show that is not only universally praised for how good its story is, but also one that has a story filled with religious imagery and references, I felt I should be completely honest about my understanding of the show: I know little to nothing about Christianity. Even though I was raised Catholic, I honestly do not have the first clue about the bible and a lot of stories contained within it. I have a vague recollection of the story of Adam and Eve, but that is about it. Still, despite lack of understanding, the show’s story and ideas are not entirely lost on me.

Loneliness and Self-Hatred. That’s it, That’s the Show

Well, not entirely, but they do play a major factor in the story of Evangelion. Almost all of the main cast, including Rei, Asuka, and Misato, along with Shinji at the center, are dealing with Loneliness in their own way. Shinji famously deals with his loneliness by running away, Misato by distracting herself with guys, Rei by finding comfort in Shinji’s father, and Asuka by trying to act tough and put her effort into piloting her Eva. Shinji in particular becomes lonely to the point of self-hatred, and begins to wonder pretty quickly in the series why he pilots an Eva to begin with.

However, the ending of the show is where I think a lot of people find solace. In the end, despite all of the horrible things that have happened up to this point, Shinji learns that reality is only as powerful as you want it to be, and that your outlook on life can change a lot by just thinking about it differently. When Shinji finally comes to understand this, he is greeted with all of his friends and family, telling him “Congratulations.” It feels weirdly like the end of a video game, almost like the final boss was himself all along, and that all he had to do was just not hate himself. Personally, I find the message a little troubling from a mental health perspective, as most people with depression and anxiety will tell you it is not as simple as just getting over it, but I do appreciate the idea of trying to have a more positive outlook.

Still, despite the extremely budgeted animation and my lack of understanding of the show’s religious references, I found myself really liking it overall. Definitely worthy of the title “classic.”

How do you all feel about Evangelion? I did think about touching on the translation controversy, but my feelings can basically be summed up like this: Its a dumb translation, and not only does is it not cool to get rid of the gay elements of the story, it also just sounds horrible when watching the show. It should be changed if possible. Still, I’m curious as to your thoughts. Let me know in the comments. If you want to support Animated Observation, check out my Kofi:

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