Cherry picking in autumn

A scene from Kurozuka. I hope this is animated.

Hello, my name is bateszi. I’m a generic anime blogger and this is my generic autumn preview. Please enjoy these poorly researched comments on anime that I know nothing about, talking about new series with the same pictures, synopsis and links that you can see in dozens of other autumn previews too. I guess we all copy each other, but that’s okay, right? Also, please note, I couldn’t care less about intriguing stories or unique ideas. Boring! All that matters is character design, and I think all characters should look the same, they should all be cute, with big eyes, tsundere, loli. If not, I won’t watch. Everything and everyone should be classifiable by genre. I only like romance. Evangelion is overrated. I don’t like mecha! So, please, enjoy my generic autumn preview. It’s positively ignorant!

Only kidding!

Tytania: Sweeping epic, space opera

If you’ve been following this blog for any length of time, you might have noticed that I’m often quite attracted to space operas. Last year, I really enjoyed Toward the Terra, was swept away by its poignant drama and epic scale. That’s why Tytania is on this list, but once I factor in that it’s from the writer (Yoshiki Tanaka) and director (Noboru Ishiguro) of Legend of the Galactic Heroes, then clearly, there is a very real chance of seeing something extra special.

There are certain ‘situations’ I’m expecting from this, lots of political intrigue and religious fundamentalism, some sensational betrayal of ambitious, old fashioned men, of men daring to dream the impossible, of mastering their own destiny, while their corrupt, bloated leaders destroy the lives of millions with a careless flick of their chubby little fingers. Characters will be wearing tidy, distinctive uniforms and have interesting names, while, for the fan-girls, there will be bishonen and romantic subtext.

Shikabane Hime (“Corpse Princess”): Potential fail, Gainax, horror

I’m not exactly brimming with excitement for Shikabane Hime. It’s just looking like more of the same, more Blood-esque horror, with a twist of Attitude. Our dearest high-school heroine devilishly delights in ripping through hordes of flesh-hungry zombies with her trusty machine gun, sound familiar? The first chapter of the manga reads more like an exploitative version of Bleach, with page after page of extreme gore and cheap fan service, while the anime trailer suggests a low budget. Alas, the involvement of Gainax has me intrigued. We all know what they are capable of. He is My Master. Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann. This could go either way. Gainax are an enigma, capable of almost anything.

Michiko to Hatchin: Westernised anime for the masses, not otaku

I’ll take a wild guess and suggest that, just from seeing the trailer, Michiko to Hatchin will be licensed by Funimation (via Geneon) for a North American DVD release within the next 6-to-9 months, then thrown into a decent TV slot, selling well with the tagline of “from the makers of Cowboy Bebop and Samurai Champloo“. There is nothing niche about this show, it has a clean, sexy and colourful style that’s refreshingly free of the creepy leering of typical otaku fare. It looks very cool, imbued with a Western Attitude, almost like a story based within the Mushroom Samba universe of Cowboy Bebop; sunny, desolate landscapes, big afros and kung-fu, what’s not to love? Ask the fans of Kyoto Animation.

One Outs: GAR, thriller

One Outs has a sinister, cold aesthetic, with character designs that are as hard as nails. Our dearest Madhouse reunites the staff of Akagi and Kaiji for this further round of manly tears and winner-takes-all gambling. Such a prospect is irresistible.

The premise.., hell, the mere subtitle of “Nobody wins, but I!” is enough to set my pulse racing. So it is sad, then, that many have already written it off because the plot is ostensibly related to baseball. You know, it’s not like I know anything about baseball either, but the game is just a means to an end; that end being a white-knuckle ride through the dangerous forest of failure, best faced whilst sporting a salary-man’s shabby suit and ruffled tie, as your tightly pursed, unfeeling lips nurse a slow burning, cheap cigarette.

Kurozuka: Horror, semi-necrophilia, action, science-fiction

This time last week, I knew absolutely nothing about Kurozuka. I was curious about its sparse promotional art, that was all, and it certainly wasn’t supposed to be on this list, but, well… I know more about it now. I devoured all 10 volumes of the manga over the weekend! I should have expected that to happen, but I just wanted to sample a few chapters and it hooked me. Plain and simple, I couldn’t stop reading it.

How might one describe Kurozuka? As a twisted love story, perhaps. As a doomed romance between immortals, that spans centuries, from Feudal Japan to a post-apocalyptic future.

Stop, I know I’m using words like ‘love’ and ‘romance’, but don’t be fooled, because this isn’t in any way profound or intimate. Kurozuka is about a woman desperately, madly in love with the severed head of a samurai named Kuro. In a twist that can only be described as bad luck, the only part of Kuro that became immortal was his head, and one more thing, these love birds, they feed on human blood. So, forget about all this ‘romance’ stuff, Kurozuka is a thoroughly grotesque, violent and strange story that is as stylish and action-packed as it is morally bankrupt.

One of the characters has a (Guts-esque) jet-powered dragon slayer sword (see the image at the top of the this post). I mean, seriously, do I need to say any more? Yes, I’m excited about Kurozuka. I’m anxious to see how it’s adapted by Madhouse, and whether or not it’s censored. If not, I feel safe in assuming that this will be the most ‘adult’ anime to air in autumn, but remember, ‘adult’ means sick, extreme, sex-laden and violent. Yum.

Author: bateszi

A huge bloody nerd. I apologise in advance. I live in Cambridge, England. That's not an excuse, by the way.

31 thoughts on “Cherry picking in autumn”

  1. The first paragraph is hilarious and so representative of a large number of the fandom bloggers. Hell, I remember reading an autumn preview in which they stated they wouldn’t watch Tytania because of the ugly artwork. Now that is funny. :) Great read, like always.

  2. Oh Bateszi, you so sassy.

    Ditto on all your choices, though. Between you and Martin I’m left with very little to contribute. Stop that. But yes, the art style of Michiko to Hatchin really tickles my fancy, and we all know fine well how Madhouse and ‘twisted’ are like two peas in a pod. God bless the waxing and waning of anime season line-ups. It’s about time we had a few more enticing prospects.

  3. Nice sarcasm in the opening paragraph. I approve. ^_^

    As is so often the case, the impossible-to-remember (let alone possible to spell accurately) titles wash over me and leave me waiting for bloggers with good taste (sic) to start getting enthusiastic over them. I’ve been misled and disappointed by my own inability to predict what will be worth watching and what won’t and quite honestly can’t find it in me to trawl through post after post in the hope that synopses and occasional promo art pics will give me any reliable indicators. Surely there’s an easier way??

    However…you’ve made more of an effort than I have so this post deserves a reply.

    Shikabame Hime. Definitely. It’s all about the Gainax factor – I’ve already cultivated the preconception that it’ll be action-fuelled trash so I’m praying their individuality will make it a unique type of trash. And hopefully fun.

    Tytania: Also on my wishlist. While we’re waiting for Banner of the Stars to hit R2 DVD, I can see this satiating my love for ambitious sci-fi stories with, well, storylines. And characters. I like to see characters I can give a damn about. This ought to deliver.

    If there are only a couple of shows that fall anywhere near the ‘headscratching sci-fi’ and ‘slice of life/iyashikei’ categories I’ll happy actually. Out of interest, have you checked out Detroit Metal City yet? It’s…unique. We need more wildcards and dark horses in the schedules – like Kaiji, ef, Kurenai or Kaiba. Hopefully something like that will pop up unexpectedly, as they so often do.

  4. At first I was like who are you and what did you do with bateszi? :D

    But I enjoyed your bit of sarcasm, Personally the only show I am really excited about this fall is Tytania because like you I also have a thing for space operas (one day I’ll brave Legend of the Galactic Heroes. It’s just a little too long for me right now.) I also might check out a couple episodes of Hakushaku to Yousei. It looks like it could be cute shoujo (or incredibly stupid). And finally I will watch the second season of Nodame. I have some issues with the anime but I do love the story.

  5. lets see what anime i am most looking for
    1-i think Kurozuka will be Shigurui of this season as i said before mad house is my favourite studio madhouse ftw
    2-One Outs from the people who did Kaiji and mad house again count me in
    3-Michiko to Hatchin sure i will be watching this
    4-casshern sins trailer was awesome by madhouse again may be the anime i am most interested in
    5-Shikabane Hime it think trailer look good with Gainax usual style
    6-mouryou no hako fourth anime for mad house i am looking for story sounds interesting
    and others
    plus soul eater my favourite for now and one piece ,naruto , bleach and xam

    also hunter x hunter manga is coming back again hell yeeeeeeeeeeeeah (hints hints)

    oh by the way there is a rumor that Hirofumi Suzuki the man who was Responsible for episode 19 of original naruto will be doing two episode in shippuden lets hope for that

  6. K so I check the latest post you have here and I get a introductory paragraph that is so out there I almost coughed a lung. Thinking that you might’ve invited someone else on board to heave a few notches of that burden known as blogging. But of course you were kidding, I mean come on. K on to the autumn offerings. All shows you have listed have tickled my fancy in more than one way. Tytania has Artland and the creators of LoGH on the helm. From my experience if artland have a good head they work it out nicely (Mushishi with Hiroshi Nagahama). Shikabane Hime is one show I’m cautiously anticipating, as you’ve said a Gainax show can go either way. If we do get a He is my master equivalent I will be ready for it, if we don’t I’ll be positively surprised. Michiko to Hatchin was one of the first shows I knew would get released in Autumn a few months back. Being done by Manglobe cataputled the show to the top. I loved how pretentious Ergo Proxy was and how down to earth and natural Samurai Champloo was, so hopefully they don’t screw this one up. Maybe they can hold the stick from the middle here and add in something meaningful and poignant? Watanabe-san’s contribution is always welcome too. Kurozuka having one of the worst promo pics doesn’t help it much. After reading the synopsis though I was intrigued. Anything that has to do with immortals, love and meaningful gore could end up being a classic. With Madhouse on duty it should be at least solid right? I mean they don’t screw up A LOT. Considering you and I share a relatively similar taste prospect, I doubt I’ll be disappointed. I’ll be looking forward to Clannad, ef (its unique if a little bit annoying) Kurogane, Tales of Abyss (Sunrise animating lol, should be interesting no matter how it turns out) and of course Gundam 00. I found it odd that you never posted about Gundam 00, I thought it would be right up your alley. It might’ve started out a little too chit chatty but it does get its own identity eventually. With the final stretch being especially excellent.

  7. When I read the opening paragraph the first thing that came to my mind was “What the hell have you been smoking?” The second was “I wonder were I can get my hands on that stuff” ;) Way to surprise your readers. Good job.
    As for the new anime you listed, only two managed to catch my attention. Michiko to Hatchin is gonna be worth a try just because Shinichiro Watanabe had his hands in it. The trailer was ok too. Kurozuka seems to be good ol’ massacre, Madhouse style. What they can do with that kind of material we’ve already seen with the likes of Shigurui or Kemonozume.
    What can I say about the other titles? One Outs is out, just because baseball is not my cup of tea. I’ve already had more than my fair share of it during my stay in the States a year ago, thank you very much. Tytania can be a good show, but I’m not into space opera. Shikabane Hime is a mystery to me. Gainax has great potential, but I mostly got disappointed with their works with the sole exception being FLCL.

  8. It seems we are looking forward to the same stuff for the most part. Tytania I’ve been waiting for since it was announced and I’m currently marathoning the aforementioned Terra e…which is pretty good. Shikabane Hime I’ve been thoroughly unimpressed with thus far, but I’ll still give it a chance because it’s Gainax. Michiko to Hatchin I would be more excited about if Watanabe was actually directing it instead of just doing the music, but it looks alright. One Outs…pass. Kurozuka on the other hand I’m glad to see should live up to what I was hoping for from it. I may be inclined to check out the manga myself after having read what you’ve said about it.

    The only other series I have hopes for (that isn’t a sequel) is Mouryou no Hako given it’s a mystery novel adaptation. I wasn’t thrilled to hear the character designs were being done by CLAMP, but as long as those don’t become the focus of the series I can deal with it.

  9. I’m looking forward to the new batch of fall anime. Thanks for the Kurozuka anime recommendation. I enjoyed the Rumiko Takahashi OAVs from the early 90s (I wonder where the mermaid flesh myth originates?). I just checked out a few of the manga chapters and am intrigued. I’m also looking forward to the next season of Nodame Cantabile. The first season was very endearing (but I’m biased since I play piano). The Saynonara Sensei OAVs should be fun as well.

    @bateszi: I just remembered an animated film that you might enjoy (if you haven’t already seen it). The movie Fantastic Planet (La Planète Sauvage) from 1973 is a great film. I’ve heard that the Eureka Entertainment release of the movie in the UK is a good one.

  10. “I’ve been misled and disappointed by my own inability to predict what will be worth watching and what won’t”

    I don’t even bother doing this, because what the heck do I really know about what’s coming out, save for a snippet or two of some shows? It keeps options and surprises open. :P

  11. This year’s anime releases have struck me as rather low risk. This autumn season looks to have just one out of forty odd shows that is entirely original material – Michiko to Hatchin. (To be fair, Netsusou! Kame 1 Grand Prix might also be entirely original, but I suspect the english language writing about that show could be compiled on a postage stamp). Everything else is either remakes, sequels, spin offs or adaptations.

    That being said, I think there are more shows this season with the potential to be interesting (in a variety of ways – some animation staff getting their directorial breaks, some noted creators resurfacing on new material) than the rest of the year so far.

  12. That first paragraph seriously had me in stitches.
    Shame that so many people do hold such views.

    Some great looking stuff though, particularly intruiged by Kurozuka.
    Looks all sorts of crazy.

  13. Thanks for the encouraging comments, everyone, and I’m pleased that the opening paragraph went down well. I must admit I was worried about being a bit too, as Hige puts it, “sassy”, but it’s just a bit of fun and quite clearly, there are some amusing observations to be made about the long-held traditions of anime blogging. Basically, I’m glad you all seemed to like it! :) Just to further disturb, I was very close to leading this post with an image from some moe anime like Clannad… but I couldn’t do it! Ah well, there is always the end of year review!?

    @ThatQuebecGuy: Some anime fans, I’ll never understand. I think one of the main strengths of anime is its visual diversity, yet it still seems to attract people who can’t (or simply won’t) adapt their minds to diverging styles. I supopse these people aren’t as much “anime fans” as genre fans. I can accept that, it’s just very annoying when they turn on something like Tytania, Tekkonkinkreet or Kaiba.

    @Hige: The anticipation of a new season is always great, as it seems like everyone (myself included) is suddenly invigorated and motivated to watch as much anime as we can find. I guess the trouble begins when prospects are proven, certain series aren’t as good as we hoped and the new episodes start building up. Anyway, I really love this time of the year, the lull in between seasons and that feeling of freedom.

    @Martin: I wondering about the ‘dark horses’ too. Kurozuka may be one, though I’ve outted it with this article, and Mouryou no Hako (a.k.a Box of Goblins) looks potentially very interesting. I guess a big part of the fun is in being really surprised by something that is completely unknown, so I’m hoping there is a series out there that’s just waiting to explode.

    Indeed, I am watching Detroit Metal City. It’s funny, and a bit like Cromartie High School, which I loved. Too much anime is composed, so, the more vulgarity the better! And I’m gradually trying to watch all of Natsume YÅ«jin-Chō too; around 4/5 episodes in at this point and I’m enjoying it quite a lot, though the episodic structure isn’t easy to marathon at all.

    @Kim: I’ve a feeling that you might want to check out Mouryou no Hako (a.k.a Box of Goblins), which is giving me some major josei vibes. Oh, and I’m half-way through the special ‘Paris’ arc of the Nodame dorama too. I really like the live action series, even if the acting is a tad over the top (I’ve noticed how Japanese TV actors often perform as if they were acting in theatre, which makes for some very interesting facial expressions!).

    @qwertypoiuy: I’ve fallen way behind on Shippuden. I haven’t watched even one episode since December ’07. Even still, I’m determined to keep going, because I’m sure I’m missing some exciting plot developments and fun action, so I will have to get back to it sooner or later.

    Oh, and I’m glad that you’re enjoying Soul Eater as much as me. It’s refreshing to watch such a well-animated, stylish and action-packed shonen series with none of the pointless filler or drag of your typical Shonen Jump franchise.

    @Ivy: Indeed, I did watch Gundam 00, so I will be following the second season too. It’s just that, like with Code Geass and Macross Frontier, I didn’t really have much to say about it. It has a relatively good story, but the characters are somewhat lacking, so their (emotional) impact on me was minimal. I guess, once you’ve seen dozens of Japanese teenagers get blown up in space, you’ve seen them all, right?

    And I’ll be looking forward to reading your thoughts on Kurozuka, especially since you didn’t seem to enjoy Shigurui. It’s not at that level of sadism, but the violence is equally as gratuitous.

    @Johny: I’ll be interested to see which series you enjoy this autumn, since your taste in anime seems to be a lot more discriminating than mine. And I just remembered how you didn’t enjoy Gurren Lagann too. Blasphemy, I tell you! ;)

    Anyway, one little piece of information you might find interesting. The director of Hundred Stories (Requiem from the Darkness) is working on an autumn series called Mouryou no Hako. The plot synopsis reads like it will be another horror story too, so I think you might want to check it out.

    @Absolutely_Steve: I’m intrigued by Mouryou no Hako too, though I’m a bit worried it’ll be another ‘Himitsu ~The Revelation~’ i.e. a potentially interesting series ruined by horrendous levels of bishonen and homoeroticism (the CLAMP designs don’t exactly fill me with confidence either). Regardless, the promotional art is impressive and the plot synopsis seems promising (and surprisingly grisly) so I’m hoping this might be one of the surprises of the season.

    Oh, and as you’re lacking in Watanabe-directed anime, you have to check out his “Baby Blue” segment of the recently fansubbed Genius Party. That is, if you haven’t seen it already! :) I’ve heard it’s quite good, but yeah, I do wish he was directing another TV series too.

    @okiu14: Thanks for the recommendation, the movie looks great, and it’s rare to find a relatively ‘serious’ animated film that was made outside of Japan. Will check it out ASAP. As for the the mermaid myth, I’ve no idea, but it’s thoroughly grotesque all the same, just a quirk of Japanese culture, perhaps? Anyway, after a bit of digging, I’m going to have to take a look at Takahashi’s Mermaid Forest, which definitely seems a bit weirder/more horrific than her usual fluffy style.

    @Lupus Inu: Cool! And do let me know what you think of it. I haven’t read many (if any at all) opinions on Kurozuka, so I’d love to know whether you liked it (or not). (I’m worried that my opinion of Kurozuka is a weird aberration and that, in reality, it’s just plain bad. We shall see!)

    @Brack: Oh, I can hardly believe there will be only one original anime in this entire season? That’s a really shocking, and somewhat depressing, statistic. Still, I remember reading that there are a record number of new anime series starting this autumn? I wonder how that compares to the autumn season of 1998? How much anime was airing in Japan back then?

    @Outlawstar: Another Kurozuka convert, eeehhhxxccellent (he said, in a Mr. Burns from The Simpsons mock voice)!

  14. I haven’t heard of Mouryou no Hako until you mentioned it so I will have to look into it. Thanks!

    And yeah the acting in Nodame can definitely be over-the-top but once I got used to it I ended up really enjoying that aspect of it. I especially loved Tamaki Hiroshi’s (Chiaki) straight man act.

    And on a side note the Tytania promo was just posted. Although of course it’s hard to get anything substantial from it.

  15. Yeah, I jumped on what has been subbed of Genius Party in a hurry as I had been waiting a long while for it (and will be waiting much longer for Genius Party Beyond since I really want to see the segments by Mahiro Maeda and Koji Morimoto). I was surprised by how similar Baby Blue was to Makoto Shinkai’s works as opposed what I’ve come to expect from Watanabe, but it was very good nonetheless. Masaaki Yuasa’s Happy Machine was also very interesting as it seems to be Kaiba’s predecessor in artistic style.

  16. @Kim: I don’t hear Nodame Cantabile talked about much. I’m glad I’m not alone in my enjoyment of it. The manic Nodame was so fun to watch as she bounced off of Chiaki. I also always got the sense that I was watching Kawachi from Yakitate instead of Mine (maybe it was just the blond hair). Oh, well.

    @Absolutely_Steve: I can’t wait for Genius Party Beyond! Genius Party was great (and I also can’t wait for the last couple of segments to be subbed, but I’d definitely prefer a quality translation to a hack job). And I agree with your Happy Machine comment. It seemed like a first run for the Kaiba process.

  17. Oh my lord, you have no idea how hard I laughed at your opening paragraph. So perfect! *laughs* I don’t even read most preview posts anymore for those reasons, except for yours and Martin’s (if he does one) and maybe Washi’s from Wakaranai (if he does one).

    Anyway, my main picks for this season are Tytania (of course) and One Outs. There are a few others (stuff that will probably never be subbed) but those are the two I’m most looking forward to. And yes, the tagline for One Outs “Nobody wins, but I!” is awesome.

  18. That propelled sword looks thoroughly impractical, and here I thought Gantz had that market on impractical weapons covered.

    I like your picks. They are a contrast the Moe generic nonsense most other anime bloggers rave about. Michiko to Hatchin and Shikabane Hime seem to definitely have the visuals down but I’m in serious need of some good writing in a show. I can only recall recent titles like Dennou Coil and Ghost Hound having interesting mostly coherent plots.

    Of course Detroit Metal City is doing its part in being thoroughly entertaining with a simple plot. Otherwise my current diet of Soul Eater, and Code Geass is definately not helping.

    Fingers crossed that these new series have a plot to go along with the pretty visuals.

  19. @bateszi – I’m not really sure if my taste is more discriminating than yours. Our tastes in anime are mostly very similar, but there are still some things I like watching that you don’t and vice versa. For example, I didn’t like TTGL, but I laughed a lot while watching Lucky Star. Now that’s blasphemy ;)
    Thanks for the info about Mouryou no Hako. Director of Hundred Stories + Madhouse + horror = win. Then again CLAMP can spoil the fun. I hope not.
    BTW, have you seen Hundred Stories? I remember recomending it to you. It’s probably lost somewhere on your “To watch” list. Anyway, if you enjoyed Cromartie High School try Sexy Commando. The absurd level is even higher than in CHS, the characters are all weirdoes, the action is wacky and the episodes (~50 of them) are only 7 minutes long each. What’s not to love?

  20. @Johny Mouryou no Hako is from the *creator* of Hundred Stories, not the director. It does have the same screenwriter, but it’s Ryosuke Nakamura directing, not Hideki Tonokatsu.

  21. Damnit, now I’m downloading Kurozuka along with a 12 gig seinen manga torrent. Thanks, a lot!

    The second season of Nodame Cantabile is my most anticipated, with the stuff you posted following it. Also, some romance anime that looked like it took place in Victorian England and had a well-dressed cat nonchalantly hanging out in the background caught my eye.

  22. @KT Kore: you don’t know how good it is to see you’re still online! I honestly won’t be doing a preview post out of sheer laziness, but when I’ve watched a couple of episodes of the shows that interest me I’ll dump my thoughts on each into a post or two. Speculating before actually seeing anything feels like too much like hard work for me (which makes the satirical tone of the opening paragraph of this post all the more amusing and painfully accurate). I can imagine you’ll enjoy the One Outs (my interest in anything sport-related is shockingly low) but I’ll probably join you guys in Tytania; apart from that I’ll probably hassle you on MAL about why you really, really, need to watch Xam’d. ^_^

  23. @Kim/General impressions RE: Tytania trailer: Anyone else feeling a little let down by the character designs for Tytania? I suppose I was expecting it to look a little bit more like LotGH, but instead, this is kind of generic bishonen/bishojo. The music and mechanical design was fine, but… yeah, the character designs are a bit too ‘artificially pretty’ for my tastes.

    @Absolutely_Steve: I still have to watch Genius Party, but, like you, I’d been waiting for it for what seemed like years. Anyway, I’m really disappointed that neither the US nor the UK anime industry has licensed it yet. I’m fairly sure it would sell better than a lot of the mediocre fare that gets released and it’s just a one-shot, so not exactly a big risk either. It’s the same with Mind Game too. Depressing that no-one has taken a risk, not even a traditionally indie company like Mediablasters.

    @KT: It’s great to see that you’re still hanging around the place. After all, it’s your fault that I’m this far into LotGH, and therefore, so excited about Tytania in the first place. And, as Martin suggests, knowing how much you loved Eureka 7, if you’re not watching Xam’d, you probably should be. Seriously.

    Also, no doubt you jumped out of your chair when you read the Hajime no Ippo news! I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read about it.

    @neobanzia: Since you’re looking for a good plot, Xam’d should be your first stop, it has an exceptional sense of world and character. Tytania has a great writing pedigree too, but I wouldn’t expect much from Kurozuka, it’s just all out, batshit insane action. And that’s the way we like it! :)

    @Johny: Thanks for the tips. You know, out of all the KyoAni productions I know of, Lucky Star is the one that I’m really tempted to take a look at. Then I remember it has one of those kitsch OP sequences with dancing moe-blobs and suddenly I’ve lost interest again!

    As for Hundred Stories. I still haven’t seen it, no. It was airing just as I was becoming a serious anime fan and it passed under my radar, and since then I’ve not had a chance. No doubt, I’ll see it one day, especially considering your passionate recommendation.

    @Protodude: A 12 gig batch of seinen manga, eh? Do tell me if you read anything good in there. I love seinen manga like Kurozuka, Berserk, Bokurano, Gantz and BLAME!, but my general knowledge of manga, outside of what’s popular, is still fairly weak, so please keep me informed. I love reading good, exciting, weird manga, especially when I can immerse myself in it for days on end.

  24. @bateszi: Lucky Star is one of those animes that you either love or hate. The style is definately moe (it IS different than most though), so I can’t blame you for not liking it. Plot is mostly nonexistant like in many slice of life series. The dialogues are often lovingly pointless. For me they were fun, others can’t bear with them. The opening can be annoying – just like the ending in Haruhi Suzumiya – but noone can deny that KyoAni is damn good at making catchy dancing sequences.

    If you’re looking for a good seinen manga, try Eden: It’s An Endless World by Endo Hiroki (it’s been translated to English by Dark Horse up to volume 11 out of 19). One of the best I’ve ever read. Set around year 2100, the world is after a great epidemic, which wiped out 15% of humanity. The main character is Elliah Ballard, son of South America’s most powerful drug lord. The story mainly focuses on his development, but there are many other interesting characters. Just like any other human, the heroes are flawed and often make mistakes with terrible consequences. And they are not immortal. People die here and – since it’s a seinen series that pulls no punches – often in a gruesome way (I’d say Shigurui would be a good comparison – Endo’s drawing style is equally detailed and realistic). Some of them deserve it, others die just because they happened to be at a wrong place at the wrong time. All of this in a setting full of hipocrisy, drugs, violence and terror. Great stuff.

  25. Oooh, I haven’t been around in ages. I just don’t have time anymore to follow series. T_T;;; But, Kurozuka looks really interesting, definitely going to watch, or at least, going to download and refrigerate. I haven’t seen it in a lot of the previews, knew this was the right place to come, ;P!

  26. Awesome opening paragraph.

    I’ve only seen two shows for the new season

    Casshern Sins; If you like action: watch it. If you like retro styled anime (in both design and story themes); watch it. If you get off on well designed animation and superior movement and background art: watch it. JUST WATCH IT!

    Shikabane Hime Aya; I really wanted to like this show, it’s shonen with a nice budget. Yet I guess despite the awesome visuals the story was just that, shonen, and it didn’t sell me like Soul Eater does. It’s actiony and has slapstick comedy plus hints of MYSTERIOUS characters pasts wooooooooooooooo, it’ll appeal to a wide range of people I’m sure. Left me cold though.

    I’m all for Tytiana (but Mikimoto’ character designs should be more round!) and Michiko and Hatchin (manglobe ALWAYS is individual, as such they rule as a studio even if individual programs aren’t masterpieces).

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