Bakacast Briefs – Dude, Where’s My Zombie?

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Jon was feeling sick and Chris was out of town, so it’s just Glen, Larry, Jeagle and me on this episode of Bakacast Briefs. Glen and I do most of the talking during the first half, where we review Break Blade, a suprisingly zombie-free episode of HOTD and Occult Academy. Then we turn the podcast over to Larry and Jeagle so they can talk about what is basically the finale of K-ON!!. We end the show with Twitter questions and uncontrollable laughter, just like a cheesy 80s sitcom. Far out!

This episode covers:

  • Break Blade #2
  • Highschool of the Dead #11
  • Occult Academy #11
  • K-ON!! #24

A list of our Bakacast Affiliates can be found here. Be sure to check out their blogs!

[Music used in this episode is “Game Boy Rock” by Wizwars.]

Madhouse Earns My Forgiveness With Epic New Film

I have immense respect for the prolific anime studio Madhouse, but their offering this season has been a total disappointment. Highschool of the Dead is one of the worst anime I have ever seen; a veritable ordeal to watch. If it wasn’t for my duties as chief editor of this site, I would have dropped it weeks ago. The K-ON!! finale might have been a wrenching roller-coaster of emotion, but the last episode of HOTD is what brought me to tears… tears of joy, that is. I’m so very happy that I don’t have to watch another episode of that garbage.

So, as you can imagine, I’ve been pretty disappointed in Madhouse lately… that is, until I saw this little trailer for something called Redline.

Freakin’ epic.

Seriously, this is one of the most visually stunning anime projects I have ever seen. I especially love the bits which display an aesthetic I can only describe as “LSD cyberpunk.” I think this film is worth watching for the animation alone. Madhouse, you have redeemed yourself.

You can learn more about Redline at ANN.

Otaku Debate: Did the Summer Anime Season Suck?

Surprisingly, last week’s debate didn’t generate the knee-jerk negative reaction towards obesity that I expected. Most of the poll respondents said they preferred their girls anywhere from “meaty” to “slightly chubby,” which could be considered average weight for most people. It’s nice to see our readers have rejected the “thin = sexy” message of pop culture and formed more realistic standards of beauty!

This week’s topic is a bit of a painful one for me. In my humble opinion, this anime season has been a total letdown. Most of the shows, such as Seitokai Yakuindomo and Ookami-san, were just too bland to be worthwhile… and the few that showed promise, like Occult Academy and Highschool of the Dead, turned out to be total duds. The only show that’s marginally entertaining at this point is Mitsudomoe, but the very risque humor makes it appealing to only a small subset of otaku.

Now, I don’t think this means anime is doomed or anything silly like that. We’ve had bad seasons before, particularly in the early nineties after the last economic crash. Still, that doesn’t make it any less depressing to slog through such mediocrity. Has this season left you in a similar state of despair? Or do you think that I’m being overly negative? Are there any anime this season you did enjoy, or are you taking refuge in old classics like Dirty Pair and Gundam while this storm blows over? Vote in the poll below, and share your thoughts in the comment section!

(Just FYI: I consider K-ON!! to be a spring season show, so it doesn’t figure into this debate.)

Did the summer anime season suck?

  • It was average, I guess. *yawn* (38%, 42 Votes)
  • I think it was pretty good. (23%, 25 Votes)
  • I agree with Jon. It was horrid. (19%, 21 Votes)
  • I haven't watched any shows from this season. (12%, 13 Votes)
  • You're full of crap! This season was awesome! (8%, 9 Votes)

Total Voters: 110

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Bakacast Briefs – May The Quartz Be With You

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Despite the allure of Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep, I managed to get this podcast out in a somewhat timely fashion. See? Sometimes miracles really do happen.

Anyway, in this episode we skip the news in favor of two extra reviews: Chris and Larry talk about Working!!,and everyone debates the strengths and weaknesses of Broken Blade (or Break Blade, if you want to be a title purist). We keep our griping about Highschool of the Dead to a bare (Haha! Get it?) minimum so we can quickly move on to more interesting things. Like how awesome it would be to live like a Pokemon trainer.

Anime covered in this episode:

  • Working!! (entire series)
  • Broken Blade #1
  • Highschool of the Dead #10
  • Occult Academy #10
  • K-ON!! #22 and #23

A list of our Bakacast Affiliates can be found here. Be sure to check out their blogs!

[Music used in this episode is “Broken Machine” by Trace Dragon XVI K.]

Bakacast Briefs – Metroid Rage

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The last Metroid in in captivity… but the fanboys are not at peace.

On this week’s Bakacast, we delve into the world of video games and examine how the new Wii game Metroid: Other M completely destroys Samus Aran’s character. Since both Dustin and I are pretty big Metroid fans, there’s plenty of hilariously impotent fanboy rage thrown around. After that, we get around to our usual anime reviews, wherein we address whether or not protagonists such as HotD’s Takashi should have sex. Finally, we answer some decidedly serious Twitter questions as best we can.

  • Highschool of the Dead #9
  • Occult Academy #9
  • K-ON!! 22 (We didn’t review this because Jeagle was absent. Hopefully we’ll get to it next week.)

A list of our Bakacast Affiliates can be found here. Be sure to check out their blogs!

Opening music is “Menu Theme” from Metroid Prime. Ending music is “Samus’ Lonely Waltz” by blackguitar.

Series Review: Working!!

Here we are at the tail end of the Summer 2010 season, with hardly anything worthwhile to watch. As Bakacast listeners know, we at Project Haruhi are having a hard time finding things to like in the anime we review each week. It’s getting pretty desperate here, such that we no longer care if the flat, uninteresting characters in shows like Highschool of the Dead live or die. Thankfully that is where Working!! comes in. This lifeline of hope was thrown to me by a friend who knew my despair. “This should help! This is moe as we remember!” she said as I sobbed into her arms about my lack of faith in moe. I remember her smile was like a ray of sunshine, boosting my confidence. Happily, she turned out to be bang-on correct. Read on to learn why she was right!

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Review: Highschool of the Dead 9

This is a guest post written by The Austin Critic. Check out his blog here!

I don’t get Highschool of the Dead. There are times when it’s trying to be a gritty zombie show, and other times when it’s a completely over-the-top, fanservice filled action show. For example, the previous episodes had scenes which featured realistic weapon handling and a few uses of strategy, giving me the impression that this was a realistic portrayal of the zombie apocalypse. The next minute however, the main characters suddenly gain the abilities of Schwarzenegger and start dodging bullets, using weaponry, driving CG military vehicles into hordes of zombies and plowing through countless undead with melee weapons. It also doesn’t help that the fanservice just stops any chance that anyone could take this show seriously. This episode was further proof that this series is having an identity crisis, as one minute it decides to show the mental conflicts that Saeko has gone through before and during this zombie apocalypse, only to completely discard this serious subject matter with fanservice.

Read more after the break.

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Bakacast Briefs – Chupacabra Attack!

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On this episode of Bakacast Briefs, we take an trip to Bizarro World, where the only show that manages to impress us is Highschool of the Dead. Of course, it doesn’t impress for any good reasons, but still. Weird, huh?

Anyway, in addition to the reviews, we briefly discuss a minor controversy concerning an ad for an Arizona sushi bar and answer some very strange Twitter questions from our faithful listeners.

The shows we talk about, as usual, are:

  • Highschool of the Dead #8 (sadly, the infamous supersonic boob scene video was taken down off YouTube)
  • Occult Academy #8
  • K-ON!! #21

[Music used in this episode is “S U P E R S C A R Y” by The Kiffness.]

Review: Highschool of the Dead 7

lol BOOBIES!!!!!!

Let me tell you something about myself that you may not know: I don’t like living in a bubble. I tend to browse other anime forums and blogs, because I like seeing what other critics have to say about the shows I’m watching. Often times I’ll find at least one intelligently-stated point that I didn’t think of, which is always a fun experience for me. However, as I was looking over comments about Highschool of the Dead, I noticed that there tends to be a pattern in the backlash toward negative reviews. Some fans believe reviewers like me aren’t being fair to the show.

“Why are you judging it so harshly?” they ask. “It’s not supposed to be deep or meaningful or smart. It’s trying to be silly, flashy fun!”

And you know what? Maybe they have a point. Maybe I’m approaching the show all wrong. I mean, if its goal is to be shallow, pandering, inconsistent and misogynistic, then why should I criticize it for hitting the mark?

Truly, I have seen the light; and to celebrate my epiphany, I’m making this review an extra-special one. I’ve decided to put as much effort into it as the writers of Highschool of the Dead put into their show.

*ahem*

It’s stupid, it sucks, and I hate it.

What? You want to know why I don’t like HotD #7? You think what I wrote is far too brief and vague to be of any use at all as a review?

Well of course my review is shallow, boring and worthless. It’s supposed to be! Since I’ve clearly met my goals perfectly, it wouldn’t be fair to post negative opinions about it.

Suck it, critics!

Bakacast Briefs – Bang Bang! Boobies!

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Have we mentioned breasts yet? We have? Okay, just making sure. It seems like a pretty good way to get a bunch of listeners.

Anyway, we start of this week’s podcast by talking about the most popular anime and video game names Japanese parents give their kids. Though we each had different favorites, we all agreed that it would be super awkward to name your daughter after a character you own a wallscroll of.

After that, we take on:

There’s no Sengoku Basara 2 review today, because I’m an idiot and forgot to watch the most recent episode. GO ME!

[The music used in this episode is “TV Games” by The Kiffness.]