Category Archives: Anime Analysis
For those of you who are unfamiliar with this anime, the story follows Kousei Arima, a former child prodigy who lost his ability to play the piano when his mother died. But after he encounters the beautiful and eccentric Kaori one day, his life begins to change. Over the course of twenty-two episodes, Your Lie in April tells a touching story about dealing with grief and the power of music.
Arguably, what makes Your Lie in April so impressive is not its script, however. The anime is at its most powerful when it lets its music and visuals do the talking. I think that Patrick Seitz, the director and writer of the English dub, must have realized that too, because the English dub audio never sounds intrusive. There’s an air of natural ease about the voice acting, as if nobody is pushing their voices too hard. I think that understatement was the best approach Seitz could have taken with a Japanese script that was, in my opinion, somewhat ungraceful at times.
The KONOSUBA -God’s blessing on this wonderful world! anime was a surprise hit last year because of its hilarious characters and entertaining parodies of the “stuck in a video game-like fantasy world” subgenre that has become so popular lately. Now that the light novel that the anime is based off has finally received an English translation, it’s time to unravel what makes the anime such a great adaptation of Natsume Akatsuki’s original novel.
Note: This review only refers to the first volume of the light novel, which is covered in the first six episodes of the anime.
If there’s one series that will attract strong opinions, it’s Eromanga Sensei. The story appears to be a romantic comedy about a boy and his little sister, and is based off a light novel written by the author of OreImo, another series that is no stranger to controversy. Having read the light novel, I can say that the content is fairly tame for the most part, but I doubt it’ll convert too many people to the little sister subgenre.
As an anime, however, Eromanga Sensei is actually pretty good. It takes the stereotypical characters in the light novel and makes their personalities shine. But it’s also a more extreme version of the light novel—in more ways than one.
“What do you do at the end of the world? Are you busy? Will you save us?”
These three questions make up the title of WorldEnd: What do you do at the end of the world? Are you busy? Will you save us? It’s a ridiculously long title to be sure, but in this anime’s case all three questions reflect the story’s main themes accurately. There’s even a sense of poetic rhythm to the title, although admittedly that might be conveyed better in the Japanese title as opposed to the English translation.
Personally, I like this title, because in three sentences it says everything you need to know about how heroism works in this story.
What do you do when you find a nice apartment with cheap rent, only to encounter a bunch of freeloaders want to take it off you? Who cares if the place is haunted, or if the underground people want to use it to take over the world! A penniless student has to protect his lodgings with all his might!
This is the plot of INVADERS of the ROKUJYOMA!?, the screwball comedy anime based off a series of equally goofy light novels. The anime only ran for 12 episodes, but the light novel series has 25 volumes in publication as of the time of this writing—and the series is still ongoing! Who knew that a simple fight over an apartment room could evolve into such an epic saga?
The anime made quite a few changes to the light novel, so if you want the full version of the story it’s best to check out the light novels, but the anime does do a good job of showcasing the most memorable moments of the original. Let’s take a closer look!
Note: This review only refers to the first volume of the light novel, which is covered in the first episode of the anime.
The Devil is a Part-Timer! has been a fan favorite ever since it first aired in the spring of 2013. And that’s no surprise! There’s something inherently hilarious about watching a demon lord and his general adjust to life in modern Tokyo, where everyone—even demon lords—have to work to pay their rent. The main characters may have been ripped straight out of a fantasy show, but their struggles are still oddly relatable to any working young adult.
The first three episodes or so are the most memorable in the anime, full of witty jokes and charming character moments. But there’s more to The Devil is a Part-Timer! than just “fish out of water” humor. In its more serious moments, the anime uses its “normal” characters to remind the audience that, even in a world bereft of demons and magic, earth-shaking chaos lie just around the corner.
Note: Spoilers for the anime’s first arc (episodes 1-5) below.
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To celebrate the 38th anniversary of the original Mobile Suit Gundam series, Crunchyroll has recently added some classic Gundam titles to its catalog. Let’s take this opportunity to look back on Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, the show that ignited the West’s love affair with Gundam. You may be surprised at how many convenient factors lined up in both the original Japanese context and the international distribution process that helped pave the way for Wing’s success.
Earlier this year, the English dub of the third season of Gintama was released on Crunchyroll. It’s the first time that this iconic comedy series has ever been available dubbed, and this has caused quite a stir among fans. Some have looked forward to it, while others have raised concerns that the Japanese cultural jokes and wordplay won’t translate well into an English dub—that something about Gintama is too “Japanese” to translate well, despite the fact that the subtitled versions have already proved popular among non-Japanese fans. There are some loaded assumptions behind the idea that Gintama is unsuited for dubbing, and I’d like to unpack some of those in today’s “Found in Translation” column, if you don’t mind.
A Certain Magical Index is based off one of the most popular light novel series in Japan ever. If you count the side story volumes and the New Testament sequel currently being published in Japan, the Index series has over 40 volumes in print—and this isn’t even counting the A Certain Scientific Railgun manga spinoff which has its own sprawling continuity. If you’re even vaguely familiar with anime and light novels, you’ve probably heard of the Index franchise.
Note: Ah yes, this article. Maybe it’s not good to say, but originally I was gonna be much more negative because the Fuuka anime is about on the same level as pig’s excretion. Naturally, I wasn’t allowed to say that on the site this anime is streaming on. Have fun reading this article and identifying all the euphemisms for “this is shit”.
Watching the first episode of the Fuuka anime made me realize how good the manga is at what it does. Fuuka is very much a typical teenage romance manga, complete with tsundere antics and a panty shot in the opening pages, but there’s also something irresistibly readable about it. In large part, this is due to the manga’s visual execution. Kouji Seo may be a controversial manga artist because of the often frustrating relationships he depicts in his stories, but he also knows how to capture a teenage boy’s viewpoint through his art. In the Fuuka manga, our hero’s confidence issues seep through his body language in every panel.
Watching the anime, however, has been quite a different experience so far. The first thing I noticed about it was its overall aesthetic. The colors clash with each other, and the 3D backgrounds have an oddly prosthetic and clinical look about them that doesn’t mesh well with the character animation. The production flaws are understandable, considering that the anime’s art director and color coordinator are both first-timers in these roles. Studio Diomedéa has also struggled to finish major projects on time lately, particularly the recent KanColle movie, and Fuuka was almost certainly a victim of a rushed schedule (sadly the norm for TV anime). The external factors were clearly not in the anime’s favor.