Tag Archives: Anime/Manga

Reacting to the Chainsaw Man Anime Trailer (Video)

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

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This week, while I am working on other projects and trying to get better at video editing, I decided to do a quick reaction to the latest trailer for the upcoming anime production of Chainsaw Man. Check it out!

If you like this video, be sure to subscribe to Animated Observations for more!


How do you all feel about “Chainsaw Man?” Let me know in the comments.

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

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

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

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Final Thoughts: Don’t Mess With Me, Nagatoro!

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

It feels weird to admit that I sat at my desk for almost an hour before actually starting to write this review, not because I was nervous about it, but rather because it felt like there was almost nothing to say about it. Normally, when I start writing about a series, I at least have an idea of what to say and just formulate the review around those ideas. However, this time around, it felt like there was almost nothing to talk about.

Like, really, what is there to say about “Don’t Mess With Me, Nagatoro,” a series so obviously created with little to interest in storytelling or good character development, and was almost certainly created as overpriced troll in an attempt to retain a certain audience of hysterical culture war defenders who are much more in line with the owning the libs types than anything else? Now, this is not to say everyone who watched and enjoyed the show did so for that reason, but it is to say that people of a certain variety are much more likely to have enjoyed it.

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I realize that last paragraph may come off as unnecessarily inflammatory, and it probably is. So, is there anything worth saying about the series, positive or negative?

Well, if there is one thing worth praising about the series, it might actually be Nagatoro’s friends. For as one note and lackluster as the comedy is overall, dumb, dumber, and dumbest actually did have a fair number of good moments. Not only that, their comedic timing was just off-kilter enough to get a couple of legit laughs out of me.

As for negatives, well…it all just feels kind of lazy. From the reusing of animations from the series in the show’s opening to the constant overuse of jokes throughout the series. Again, I might have more good will towards the show if it did not feel like the most obvious bait in the world.

Overall, man I just do not care. There are so many other anime that could better occupy your time, do not spend it watching this nothing of a series.


How do you guys feel about “Nagatoro?” 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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Final Thoughts: AKU no Hana Volume Two

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In this small town, 
secrets live and die among only a select few.
The egos of many are so frail they need a paperweight.
Fantasy sometimes becomes so powerful that the ground 
dissapears under the veil of night.

“Aku no Hana” is without a doubt one of the stranger series I have read/watched. In a lot of ways, it feels like I should hate it, and yet the more I read the more I can’t help but get absorbed into the madness of it all. Apart from the first chapter, the second volume was almost nothing like I expected it to be. There are so many unknown variables, the biggest one being Nakamura, that it sometimes feels like the series is doing a 360 just to add a layer of confusion. Anyway, here are my final thoughts.

And the Story Continues

It was not enough for Nakamura to simply make Kasuga’s life miserable, nor is it likely that it will ever be enough, and as a result, she continues to make him feel the weight of his guilt. In this volume alone she nearly reveals Saeki’s clothes by pooring water on Kasuga while he’s on a date, becomes friends with Saeki as a way of making Kasuga worry, suggests to Kasuga that Saeki wants to have sex with him, and in the fairly infamous scene, forces him to write out all of the things he has done across their homeroom.

Meanwhile, Kasuga attempts to live his life normally while forming a relationship with Saeki. However, Nakamura’s antics cause him so much stress that right after he and Saeki begin dating, he says that he “hasn’t felt this free in years.” The relationship between Kasuga and Nakamura on its own already brings out a lot of tension, but when you add in the implications on Kasuga’s life on top of it, it becomes clear just how deep that tension really runs.

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Nakamura

I mentioned in my last post about “Aku no Hana” that Nakamura as a character seems to be representative of something more, of a society that only wishes to shame others for deviating from a designated cultural norm. The second volume provides another big piece of evidence for this.

In the classroom scene at the end of the volume, as Nakamura attempts to run away and calls Kasuga a coward, she mentions how society is obsessed with sex. However, instead of coming off as a serious criticism, it seems to come more from a place of jealously. In this scene, Nakamura represents a more conservative element of society that hates the emotional freedom that comes from modern society, not for any principled reason, but rather because those same elements lacked that freedom when they were younger.

Even more generally though, Nakamura could also be seen as representing the lack of freedom people had to pursue their own interests when they were younger, and the need to control others because of it. The message still feels a little weird coming from a series with the subject matter that it has, but nonetheless is still an important one.

Kasuga

On the other side of this interaction is Kasuga, who, after being manipulated by Nakamura, finally rebels, at least in a way. To keep Nakamura in the classroom, he does what she says, writing out his moral failures on not only the chalkboard but across the entire classroom, leaving it covered in black ink and descriptions of his endeavors. In a way, by fully admitting to the things he’s done, mainly stealing Saeki’s gym clothes, he is freed from her manipulation and can go on living without having to worry about what others think.

Still, part of me believes ultimately that this is actually what Nakamura wanted all along. By getting Kasuga to admit his guilt in a big display of passion, she can make him feel even worse, knowing full well that the shame will come rushing back as he falls from high of rebellion.

By the way, I guess I should take some time just to say that whenever I write these Final Thoughts posts on individual volumes, I never read ahead, so all of this is speculation, meaning everyone is totally free to make fun of me in the comments for how wrong I am provided there are no spoilers. So, have fun with that.

Conclusion

While I honestly thought this volume’s pace was going to be a lot worse, I am very happy about how wrong I was. the show just continues to build and build, allowing the reader to dive deeper into the madness and then feel the climax near the end. All of it is extremely well written, and on top of all the suspense, author Shuzo Oshimi forces people to contend with some pretty uncomfortable ideas. It is honestly hard to say where the series will go from here, but I am excited to continue, so be sure to come back next week as we dive in further.


Hope you all enjoyed the little poem at the beginning. I’m trying to make my posts a little more flavorful/personal, so I hope that added something more interesting. What do you all think of Aku no Hana? 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!

Man Joins Black Lives Matter Protests After Cop Steals His Anime Merch

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

(The following is satire)

In the wake of historic protests following the death of George Floyd, along with many others since then, many have felt uneasy about joining said protests. One man from East Knoxville said “Of course Black Lives Matter, and I want to help, but I don’t know if protests are the best way to go about it.” However, the man’s mind was quickly changed after an encounter with police earlier this month. “I was driving home after getting some figurines from one of my favorite stores, I get pulled over and before I know it, there was a cop taking my stuff.”

The man in question, Steven Smith, is referring to the process of Civil Asset Forfeiture, a totally real process in which the police can accuse your possessions of being involved in a crime instead of you, and thus can take them in as evidence. “After that experience, I realized just how corrupt the policing system is, and I knew from that point that protesting was worth it.”


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 June “Mindfulness” Tour: Shimada and Loving Shogi

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

Thank you all for once again stopping by for another OWLS tour. This months theme is mindfulness.

For the past few months, things have been pretty hectic. Everyone’s lives have changed to some degree, and we can’t help but feel anxious, nervous, and overwhelmed. This month we will be focusing on ourselves and keeping a strong peace of mind with our theme, “Mindfulness.” We will be analyzing characters that have crafted and practiced their own philosophy on life and have spread their beliefs to others. We will also be talking about habits, hobbies, and things that are keeping us sane, positive, and peace within our souls. 

As always, be sure to stop and check out some of our other members on the tour. This month it will be Megan on the fourth and Matt on the tenth.

For this month’s post, I wanted to do a follow up to last month, in which I talked about the need to adapt in “March Comes in Like a Lion.” With that said, I hope you all enjoy.


In last month’s post I talked about how the people around Rei were a big reason he was able to adapt to his new life outside his adopted family. Arguably the most important influence outside of the Kawamoto sisters is Shimada.

Before meeting Shimada, Rei was in a place of extreme struggle, both personally and professionally. Not only was his relationship with his family, especially his sister, still incredibly uncomfortable, he was also quickly losing any love he had left for shogi.

While participating in the King’s Tournament, Rei vowed to beat Gotou for supposedly wronging his sister Kyouko. Now, there is a lot wrong here that is also worth dissecting that would probably reveal a good amount of Rei’s thought process. However, before he can get his revenge on Gotou he loses to the A ranked Shimada.

At first, Rei is confused. He barely comprehends what happens, and ultimately does not even remember half of the game. After eventually swallowing his pride about his loss, Rei looks to Shimada for guidance about his play. Shimada then decides to accept him as a student at his shogi summer camp.

While his usual tired, unimpressed expression often hides it, Shimada is someone who has a ton of love for the game of shogi. Not only does he run his summer camp, helping both Rei and Nikaidou, but also actively coaches Rei one on one. Shimada is someone who has a sincere love of the thing he does, and because of that is willing to spend time on others who also want to get better.

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Much of this positive presentation rubs off on Rei, and because of this, he starts to find his love of the game again. While watching Shimada play against shogi grandmaster Souya after the King’s Tournament, Rei realizes just how amazing the game can be at a high level.

This not only inspires Rei’s love for the game again, but makes him want to do better. Before meeting Shimada, Rei’s rank was at risk of slipping while Nikkaidou was ready to become a B ranked player.

For so long Rei had been carried by his natural ability for the game that hitting a wall nearly made him quit. However, meeting Shimada turned out to be one of the best things for him.

While it may seem childish to some, looking up to those who are better than you can be great for improvement at nearly anything. Using myself as an example, starting last year I wanted to get better at playing Smash Bros competitively.

I had always played against my friends, but I was never able to learn much because I did not own the game, and rarely had the ability to practice. However, when Smash Ultimate came out, I got pretty serious about getting better.

I spent about the last year practicing, and the results have definitely paid off. Not only am I able to perform a ton of combos I could not do before, I also am getting much better at going against top players in my region. Ultimately what Shimada ends up teaching Rei is two-fold. One is to love the game again, and two is to dedicate himself to the things he loves.


What other things should we be mindful of in these times? 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!

Anime Fan Protests COVID-19 Delays by Burning Collection

(Not Real)

After many announcements of delays in anime series due to COVID-19, many fans have taken to social media to voice their frustration, but one has taken it even further. Steven Smith took to Twitter, posting a picture of what he says is his burned anime collection.

Smith explains in his tweet that he is “tired of seeing everyone get so lazy because of COVID-19.” He then goes on to explain that his decision to burn his anime collection was inspired by what he called the “brilliant and well-informed Keurig protesters,” a reference to many who destroyed their Keurig coffee machines after the company pulled their advertising from Fox Host Sean Hannity in 2017.

After following up with Smith earlier this week, he elaborated on his decision. “I simply don’t want to support an industry that believes that sitting around doing nothing is ok. Using COVID-19 as an excuse to not go back to work is simply Immoral.”

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Smith’s now viral series of tweets supposedly came after learning that the staff behind the popular series “The Promised Neverland” decided to delay its second season until next year over safety concerns.

When asked to respond to this decision, Smith simply said that studio Cloverworks was “just being ridiculous. There is no reason they can’t release the show in October.”

Animated Observations also asked Smith about his current work and living situation. “Me? I’m doing just fine. I mean, I work from home anyway, but this whole COVID-19 thing has been way overblown. First they want me to stay inside, and now I can only leave without a mask? Its absurd. The government shouldn’t be telling me what to do.

After pointing out that many of the more severe restrictions placed in other countries helped to save lives, and that many thousands more people are likely to die because of the recent reopenings, Smith proceeded to call us “fake news” and then hung up the call.

He has since declined any further comment.


Thanks for reading everyone.

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!

Final Thoughts: Fairy Tail

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

A little less than a year ago now I wrote a retrospective on “Fairy Tail” over on Anime Shelter, who you should all go follow btw. In it, I summarized my feelings on it as more or less a Facebook status: its complicated. While I still enjoy the core of “Fairy tail’s” story a great deal, its largely unchanged aesthetics, combined with its painfully stale sense of humor and needless filler make it much harder to enjoy eight years later.

However, I had yet to finish the series until now, for two reasons. One is the usual “I’m lazy and because I’m lazy I am going to put this off for as long as humanly possible.” The other, although less prominent, was that part of me did not want to finish the series. So much of my childhood was that show, and to think that it is just over was almost inconceivable. However, I finally did it, and well, my feelings have not really changed a whole lot.

The Problems with “Fairy Tail’s” Writing

As I mentioned above, their are quite a few problems with “Fairy Tail,” and a lot of them come from the the show’s writing. For starters, while I do not know which arcs in particular are actually filler arcs relative to manga, their are plenty that feel like it.

A good example of this is the Oracion Seis arcs, and I do mean all of them. While it can be argued that some of the action scenes in particular from these arcs were pretty cool, overall the characters that make up the Oracion Seis never felt particularly necessary to the story as a whole.

While the show was putting up these needless filler arcs, the series also failed to develop a large portion of its supporting cast. Characters like Jet, Levy, Cana, Warren, and a ton of other minor members in Fairy Tail never really got a time to shine despite the guild being the main focus of the series.

It also did not help that many of the minor characters of different guilds were also painfully boring or outright annoying. Although many members of Blue Pegasus and Lamia Scale become fairly prominent near the end of the series, none of them came off as particularly memorable. In fact, outside of Ichiya, the leader of Blue Pegasus, I actually struggle to remember any of their names. For the ones I did remember it was mainly because I could not stand them.

*cough* Tobio and Ichiya *cough*

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The show’s humor is also painfully stale at this point. I will admit that when I started watching the show around 13 and even into my late teens, the low effort humor of someone randomly getting naked and/or Natsu, Gray, and Erza fighting was pretty funny, but especially towards the end of the series it gets old fast. “Fairy Tail” uses these same jokes a lot, to the point where it has almost become predictable as to which joke is going to be used and when in any given episode or season.

The Character Design Change

Post the year and a half hiatus following episode 175 of the series, the show got a serious character design change. This was due to both a change in studio and character designer.

Previously, studio A-1 pictures and Satelight had been jointly working on the series, but after the hiatus a studio named Bridge took Satelight’s place. Character designer Aoi Yamamoto was also replaced with Shinji Takeuchi and Toshihiko Sano.

Like with any design change that happens between seasons, such as with Oregairu, people were conflicted. However, looking back at the two designs now, its pretty obvious which one looks better.

Not only did post 175 designs look better, they also visually breathed life into the series and made it much more digestible, despite the plot overall not actually changing.

Aside from just the character designs, however, many of the action scenes also looked incredibly good after the change. The magic designs felt more colorful and explosive while characters were fighting, and as a result gained a more distinct identity that was associated with specific characters.

The Music Never Changes

One can only listen to a particular music track for so long without getting bored. It is one thing to have a prominent main theme in a series that is only 12 or even 24 episodes long, but when a series runs for over 300 episodes and the soundtrack consists of mainly remixes of its main theme for the majority of its more important moments, then there is a problem.

However, this is not just an issue with the main theme. The show reuses a lot of its original soundtrack for similar moments. Whenever a villain is revealed, the same chilling, Gregorian chants kick in. Whenever there is not much going on, the same whistles turn on, etc, etc.

Conclusion

If I had to summarize “Fairy Tail’s” problems in just a sentence, it would be this: The show is far to long to justify its use of repetition in almost every aspect of its execution. If there was even a little more to the show’s presentation, or even a removal of some filler, it would be more enjoyable. As it stands now, the show is still just OK.


How do you all feel about Fairytail? 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!

Anime Sequels and “News” Sites

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

I want to start out this post by saying that the anime community as a whole has brought me a lot of joy over the past eight years or so. I have gotten to know so many people who enjoy the same things I do, and I have even gotten to attend a number of anime conventions and start this blog because of it. There is so much about the anime community that is worth exploring and enjoying.

With that being said, there are also many terrible elements within the community as well, and while I could talk about the more serious ones, such as racism against cosplayers, the uncritical defense of sexually depicting young girls in anime, or even the toxic fan bases of specific shows, I wanted to take some time to talk about something more near and dear to my heart.

Now, when I was in high school just a few years ago, I worked for my school’s newspaper. Despite the fact that not many people read the paper, both online and print forms, I still took our work seriously, because getting people accurate information is an important job, and one that should be taken up with the utmost responsibility.

That leads me to one of my pet peeves in the anime community, more specifically with how “news” is delivered by certain publications. While websites like Crunchyroll, Anime News Network, and a few others do a relatively good job at delivering accurate information, it seems as though the vast majority of those who supposedly do this work are just in it for clicks.

My primary example of this has to do with the way that many of these sites talk about anime getting second seasons. Many untrustworthy anime sites will write a headline implying that the second season of popular show has been officially confirmed, when in reality it will be something as minor as the director or assistant director of a show having made some passing comments about wanting to do a sequel.

Anyone who has spent any amount of time doing research on a given show will know what I am talking about. Specifically, I ran into this problem early last year while looking for information about Oregairu season three, and while as of this year the show has been officially confirmed for a third season, despite being pushed back, before then, there was a lot of misinformation running around about its release.

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Another problem that comes up with these “news” sites is that many of them will often not update there articles as new information comes out, which is something responsible news outlets are supposed to do. This can leave many readers thinking that a show might not actually have a sequel when, such as the case with many shows right now due to COVID-19, it is simply just delayed.

Now, in the grand scheme of things, reporting on entertainment and art could be considered significantly less important than on normal world events and politics, and while I might be inclined to agree with that, this sort of lazy misinformation can still create problems.

Back during the initial release of Pokemon Sword and Shield, many articles were making false reports about what would and would not be in the game, thus fueling death threats against the creators.

Ultimately, misinformation is bad for pretty much everyone. On the side of the reader, since many already have a hard time distinguishing between opinion and news, it will likely create even more mistrust of news outlets, even ones that have the reputation to back up their reporting, entertainment or otherwise.

As for the news outlet itself, it not only makes themselves look bad, but will further add to the collapse of journalism by making normal advertisers less likely to trust them. Not to mention, that, in an age where news sites, even primarily online based ones, are relying more on crowdfunding and subscriptions than ever, trust becomes even more important.

Now, I want to be perfectly clear with what I am saying. This article is not an invitation to harass those with whom some might have perceived political differences. As long as reporters are delivering accurate information in their news sections, their should not be a problem with how those same people choose to express themselves through editorial.

In fact, it is quite the opposite. There are many smaller “news” sites that have cropped up only to deliver misinformation and false reporting, and I think it is worth calling those sites out as a group, because not only are they doing a disservice to readers, they are simply adding to the mistrust that people have about the media.

This is not to say that all of this mistrust is justified, however. If president Donald Trump has demonstrated one thing continuously it is that authoritarians love calling those that hold them accountable “fake” and “biased.” However, for a variety of reasons, it is better to not justify these opinions through actual misinformation.


Alright, so I got out one of my anime community frustrations, but what are some of yours? 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!

Final Thoughts: Kuroko no Basket

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

It took a while, but I finally managed to finish Production I.G.’s other great sports anime accomplishment: “Kuroko no Basuke.” The show has the feel of being mostly a giant tournament arc, but there were still a lot of ups and downs, especially near the end. With that said, here are some of my Final Thoughts.

“Kuroko no Basket”: Friendship is Magic

Although I have still yet to watch many sports anime, one thing that I have noticed among the ones I have seen is there tends to be a bit of weakness when it comes to thematic endings. The same seems to be true of “Kuroko no Basket.”

While the road to get to the show’s thesis was certainly exciting, and I would happily watch another season were one to be made, the series seems to suffer from the same lack of a greater overall point. At the end of the series, after beating Akashi, the takeaway seems to just be that “everything will be OK as long as you’re having fun.”

While this is not even a bad message, it does feel a little boring from a show that was otherwise action packed and pretty much always delivering in its game scenes. Speaking of the games, though…

The Games are Incredible

One of the reasons I initially did not want to watch the series was because, out of context, the scenes where characters use their special techniques look pretty dumb. However, plenty of things do not make sense out of context, so of course I ignored this and just gave the series a chance.

Even though the abilities themselves still do not make a ton of sense in context, it works enough to where there is still plenty of room for hype when Seirin faces their next opponent. Specifically, all of the games against the “Generation of Miracles” are extremely well done. There is a lot of back and forth, emphasis on the decision making and technical abilities of each of the players, and exploration of character motivation during the games.

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One game, or rather series of games, that stands out is Seirin vs Shutoku, where Kurkoko and Kagami have to contend with Midorima’s insane shooting ability. Through a series of extended flashbacks, the show demonstrates just how much practice Midorima has put into his shots, to the point where he can easily make three pointers from full court. Most of their games are spent figuring out how to counter Midorima and make up for lost points that they could not defend against.

Even during the games without the “Generation of Miracles, there is still plenty of strategy and play-making that gets explored, which makes them all the more interesting to watch.

Kuroko and Kagami

Previously, I wrote about my feelings on the similarities and differences between “Haikyuu” and “Kuroko no Basket.” While the two can definitely feel a bit one-dimensional at times, there relationship certainly stands out from the first episode.

Using the power of misdirection, Kuroko can seemingly make himself invisible. This, combined with his ability to pass incredibly fast give him the title of the “Phantom Sixth Man of the Generation of Miracles.” At the beginning of the series, Kuroko makes a promise to Kagami that he will make him number one, and will become the shadow to his light.

It is a really cool dynamic and also allows for a pretty powerful visual metaphor for their play style. Kagami likes to be flashy, often using his incredible jumping power both on defense and to score, and Kuroko works from people’s blind spots, making passes and steals with ease.

Conclusion

Exciting really only begins to describe the sports anime experience that is “Kuroko no Basket.” It combines a sport that is already pretty high energy with a storyline that, while thematically weak, creates a lot of tension among its characters, almost all of whom are fleshed out incredibly well. Fans of sports anime who somehow have not seen this show should definitely fix that immediately.


How do you all feel about Kuroko no Basket? 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!

Finishing Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood with My Dad

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

In the long time that I have spent watching and talking about anime, never had I actually shared those experiences with my parents. While they have been aware of my hobby for quite some time, I was never really keen on introducing it to them, as I kind of just assumed they would not get it.

Which, to be fair, is not always a wrong assumption to make. Anime is a very different space for storytelling, and as most anime fans know, it comes with its own weird niches that make a lot of it still pretty inaccessible, at least in a cultural sense, to older, western audiences even today.

Still, after a long, somewhat awkward period of my dad being interested in it and me not knowing what exactly to show him, it finally came to be that I sat down with him and we watched some anime. I picked “Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood” for a few reasons.

One, “FMAB” is probably one of the least niche filled anime there is in recent memory. While it for sure is an anime in every possible incarnation of that definition, it still lacks a lot of the strange, more common tropes that are associated with an average show. As such, it seemed like the perfect show to ease my dad into the medium.

Two, “FMAB” also has a lot more in common with modern American productions in terms of its structure and content. For example, at its core, “Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood” is a fairly long, fantasy military story that revolves around a lot of politics and different warring factions. When thought of in this way, it can be pretty easily compared to “Game of Thrones,” or even “The Walking Dead.”

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I came into this viewing with a lot of knowledge. Before I watched it with my dad, I had already seen the show three or four times. However, I will say that “FMAB” is a show that definitely benefits from a few repeat watches and a varied perspective on politics and cultural issues, given that it is most of the show’s focus.

My dad, of course, was on the opposite side of the spectrum. Not only did he not have any experience with “FMAB,” he, again, has had almost no experience with anime. Admittedly this made me a little worried about whether or not he would actually enjoy it.

Another thing that made his viewing experience less than ideal was the time it took to finish the show. We started “FMAB” in the fall of last year and did not finish until last week, and while I cannot remember exactly when it was, it was long enough, that it made it harder to remember key details.

Still, it seemed like overall he enjoyed it. My dad has never been overly judgmental, and it felt like he came into the series with an open mind. One of the things he said he enjoyed most was the more overtly political aspects of the show. This surprised me a lot, as I knew my dad was aware of political discourse, but thought he was not much interested in it.

While watching anime by yourself can definitely be a lot of fun, there is something to be said about trying to show it to other people, especially those who are not as familiar with it, if at all.


Ok, so serious proposal. I do want to show my dad a lot more stuff, so I thought about doing regular posts or videos where, after we watch a few episodes, I do a kind of discussion video about the episodes we watched. If any of you are interested, I would appreciate you letting me know.

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