The final K-ON!! episode announced that a film will be produced. I can’t say I’m surprised, but I am somewhat disappointed. Do we really need this?
KyoAni has done it again: they gave us a repetitive and boring second season that didn’t live up to the first, just like Haruhi, and then tried to win back our favor with a film announcement. Bah! Why waste our time and money with a subpar TV anime season when KyoAni can give us better material on the big screen? MERCHANDISE is the answer. It’s all for one and one-thousand yen for a Mio doll.
Is this the future of anime? Do the studios care about nothing but merchandise and ticket sales? Substance, story and plotline don’t matter anymore? I certainly hope not… but given what I’ve seen lately, it’s hard to be optimistic.
I’ve said on the podcast that K-ON! had all the material to do a third season, provided it focused on the light music club and its new members. Will this film be about Yui and company, or the new band under Azusa’s tutelage? Will the girls finally realize their dream of playing at Budokan, or just sit around drinking tea? If this just winds up being more of the same pointless filler we got for much of the second season, they just shouldn’t bother making this film at all.
Here’s to the K-ON!!! movie. I hope you live up to the hype.
Do you see that look on Maya’s face? That expression of disappointment and contempt, mixed with just a hint of anger? Yeah, that’s how I feel right now.
Look, I wanted to like Occult Academy, I really did. Back in the early days of the summer season, I called this show “messianic,” a gift from the heavens destined to drive back the forces of mediocrity and darkness. Here, at long last, was an anime that had a plot beyond “cute girls drinking tea,” characters with more depth and originality than tired archetypes like “twintailed tsundere,” and humor more sophisticated than “LOL BOOBIES.” In other words, this was exactly the kind of thoughtful, original show we needed to counter the ever-increasing tide of fanservice and moe garbage that’s been swamping the airwaves. Sadly, it was unable to live up to those high expectations.
We’ve got a new co-host this week! We call him Glen, but you might better know him as Nagato, a long-lost friend and one of the original founding members of Project Haruhi. With him by our side, we start off by discussing Oxford’s hilarious and misdirected attempts to understand anime culture. After that, Chris gets all nostalgic about his very first manga, Love Hina. Finally, we move on to this week’s anime reviews.
WARNING! If you are the kind of fan who blindly worships any anime he enjoys, you might want to go elsewhere. We don’t hesitate to criticize these shows in the snarkiest fashion possible, which means a certain degree of intelligent and critical thought is required to fully appreciate our reviews. If you’re going to accuse us of being haters or trolls merely because we didn’t like one of your favorite shows, just don’t bother. I’m sure a site like Sankaku Complex or 4chan would be more amicable to your tastes.
With the summer season halfway finished, it’s time to start drooling over the new fall season anime. Since Chartfag has not yet released his usual new anime chart, a couple of other bloggers have stepped in to fill the void. This chart from The Cart Driver seems to be the most accurate thus far. Click on the thumbnail followed by the little green arrow at the bottom of the lightbox to see it at full size. Bootleg PVs for some of these anime can be watched here.
Here are the anime I’m planning to watch and why.
Star Driver: I’ve been thirsting for a new giant robot show for a while, and this one looks pretty promising.
My Little Sister Can’t Be This Cute!: I’ve heard good things about this light novel series from moe fans. It looks kinda generic, but hopefully will be entertaining enough to fill the void left by K-ON!!.
Iron Man: Dude, it’s friggin IRON MAN animated by MADHOUSE. Everybody is going to be watching this, myself included.
A Certain Scientific Railgun OVA: I’m a huge fan of Railgun, and there’s no way I’m going to pass up a chance to see mai waifu Mikoto again. Bring it on!
A Certain Magical Index II: See above.
Hyakka Ryoran Samurai Girls: This seems like brainless fanservice action fare, but I’ll give it a shot anyway. Sometimes you find a good show hiding among the muck.
Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt: This surreal show looks like a mix of Powerpuff Girls and Samurai Jack. Can Gainax deliver another instant classic, or will it flop like Hanamaru Kindergarten?
The rest of these shows simply don’t interest me. If any of them get good reviews, I’ll consider picking it up… but just going by their descriptions alone, I doubt they’ll be worth watching.
How about you? Do any of these shows strike your fancy, or are you gritting your teeth for yet another mediocre season?
As those of you who have been listening to the podcast know, my opinion of the recent Occult Academy episodes has been rather low. Episode 3 was just plain boring, and episode 4 completely derailed Fumiaki’s character, turning him into cowardly comic relief. Now, these two episodes weren’t BAD per se, but they also weren’t anywhere near as good as the first two. Seeing such a promising show fall from grace was painful, and I was starting to worry that Occult Academy would completely squander its potential just like So Ra No Wo To. Boy, am I glad to be wrong.
Episodes 5 and 6 were a complete turnaround. Thanks in large part to the strong writing, these episodes picked up the pace, un-derailed Fumiaki’s character, and rekindled my interest in the show. They even nailed the comedy, which was both hilarious and perfectly blended with the more serious aspects of the story. And, best of all, Mikaze got almost no screentime! Will wonders never cease?
Project Haruhi is now using Disqus as our comment system. This adds a ton of new functionality, such as the ability to edit your comments, post them to Twitter, subscribe to comment feeds via RSS or email, and rate other people’s comments. You can log into the system using your Twitter, Facebook or Yahoo ID, or use the old-fashioned method by simply providing a username and email like before. However, the best method is to create a Disqus profile with the same email address you use to comment here. After you’ve verified your email and logged in to Disqus, follow this link and claim your old comments.
As always, we’re open to feedback. If you have any comments or suggestions, tell us below or e-mail them to ryoko[at]projectharuhi.net!
After the first two episodes of Occult Academyblew me away, I was expecting big things from the third. In hindsight, perhaps this was foolish; many anime have great introductions, but falter a few episodes in. Was I setting my expectations too high? Or was I merely so confident in the creative talent behind Anime no Chikara that I thought they could do no wrong?
Perhaps I’m being a bit drastic; the third episode of Occult Academy certainly wasn’t bad by any stretch of the imagination. It rounded out Fumiaki’s character wonderfully, and delivered more laughs than Seitokai Yakuindomo will ever manage. However, it barely added anything to the series’ mythos or storyline, other than the rather bland new character Mikaze. In fact, this Mary Sue romantic interest and her date with Fumiaki took up far too much of this episode’s runtime, and slowed the pacing to a crawl. The end result was an episode that, while still enjoyable, was nowhere near as good as the previous two.
This is a refined and expanded version of an editorial I originally wrote for Japanator. The original can be found here.
It seems one of the biggest problems in the ongoing moe debate is the lack of any concrete definition for the term “moe.” This has lead to all sorts of argument among otaku; some believe the term can be applied to any female character the viewer considers cute, while others argue it should be strictly limited to its original Japanese definition. Personally, I think the truth lies in between these two extremes. After all, language is defined by its usage, not by the opinions of a few crazed fanboys or some dusty old dictionary. Therefore, based on my own observations and research, I have created the Four Laws of Moe. I believe these laws lay out, in clear and concise detail, the exact parameters of moe and what traits a character must exhibit in order to be considered as such. Of course, these laws are merely a reflection of my own opinion; feel free to improve upon them, argue against them or even construct your own alternative theory. Whatever the case, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below.
Like my fellow editors here at Project Haruhi, I have been pretty disappointed by the new summer anime thus far. In my humble opinion, this season’s shows are either overrated, subpar or just outright horrible. Of course, I’ve experienced this kind of thing before. I always take solace in the fact that, just when things are looking darkest, a single great anime emerges from the shadows. Like a brilliant beam of light from the heavens, this one show drives back the darkness and brings hope to all the downtrodden, world-weary otaku.
This season, that show is Occult Academy.
Think I’m being hyperbolic? Find out more after the break!
Hey, look! It’s the debut episode of Bakacast Briefs! As always, you can download it directly, subscribe to our RSS feed, or let iTunes do all the work for you. So, what is Bakacast Briefs, you ask? Basically, we’ve resigned ourselves to the fact that Bakacast will only update once a month. However, we wanted to give our audience something to listen to during that large gap of time. So we figured we’d try doing mini-episodes that ditch our typical news and in-depth review format; instead, Bakacast Briefs will feature Jon (aka Ritsu), Chris (aka Kagami) and me giving our brief thoughts on each week’s new anime episodes. Unfortunately, Chris is unusually busy with something called “real life”, so it’s just Jon and me in this episode. We discussed:
I was hoping to add Sengoku Basara 2 to this list, but Funimation still hasn’t put the first episode up (so much for a “simulcast”). I’ll talk about it on next week’s show, I promise. Also, this list is likely to change as we drop shows we’re not interested in. So by the time we’re a few weeks in, we’ll probably have narrowed it down to a few shows that all of us are watching. In the meantime, tell us what you think of the new style. It’s very much in the “experimental” stage, so we’d love to know what you like or don’t like about it. The music used for this episode is “Colour Television” by J. Arthur Keenes.