Anime Sunday: Touken Ranbu Episode 01 Impressions

This week for Anime Sunday I’m taking a look at another series from the Summer 2017 Season. It’s my Touken Ranbu Episode 01 Impressions!

Plot Synopsis: In the year 1863, Japan is split between the warring pro-shogunate and anti-shogunate factions. Izuminokami Kanesada is a Tōken danshi (刀剣男士, lit. “Sword Warrior”), which is a tsukumogami of a historical Japanese blade brought to life by the Saniwa (審神者). With new recruit Horikawa Kunihiro, they chase after the Jikan sokōgun (時間遡行軍, lit. “Time Retrograde Army”) to prevent history from being changed.

Plot: This first episode is pretty intense on the action which is perfect considering that this is animated by ufotable. There are plenty of questions that aren’t answered, like exactly how Kanesada or Kunihiro are person shaped, but I’m sure that it’ll be answered in later episodes. That being said if you are looking for a deep plot driven series along the lines of the Fate series, you may be disappointed.

Characters: Kanesada and Kunihiro are our two leads, and they are pretty intriguing even if we don’t know a whole lot about their background. There are plenty of things we really don’t know about them, except that Kunihiro is a newbie to this whole preservation of history.

Artwork: As you might expect from a ufotable studio the artwork is excellent. The action sequences are always a joy to watch with ufotable and Touken Ranbu isn’t any different.

Music: The music is pretty decent, not super amazing like something from a Final Fantasy game, but not bad at all.

Overall: If you enjoy amazing action sequences, or just like looking at pretty boys who are actually swords than Touken Ranbu is a perfect fit for you.

For those who like: Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Amazing Artwork, Intriguing Plot, Good Music.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

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Anime Sunday: Ballroom Episode 01 Impressions

Hey all I’m back with another new series of the Summer 2017 season for this week’s Anime Sunday. It’s my Ballroom Episode 01 Impressions!

Plot Synopsis:  An aimless Japanese youth named Fujita Tatara, is heading back home after school when he recognizes someone from his school entering a building. While looking at the sign outside he’s accosted by delinquents.. However after a person on a motorcycle comes to his rescue he’s suddenly thrust into the building….

Plot: The plot of this first episode is pretty great. It had enough of a hook for me to watch every available episode at the time back to back (5 at the time). While I won’t say that it’s bad to watch  on weekly basis, I found the enjoyment of the story was better for me if I binged watched the series. Ballroom is a 2-cour series, so it’ll have two seasons of episodes to watch if you want to hold off on watching it till everything is aired.

Characters: Tatara is a pretty typical kid, but I really enjoy him as a main character. Hanaoka Shizuku is one of the female leads, and while she’s the first we encounter I actually don’t like her all that much. She doesn’t really give off much emotion so it’s hard to relate to her. Sengoku, Tatara’s mentor is a pretty hilarious guy, and fairly intense as well. The rest of the cast is good too.

Art: The artwork is pretty awesome, and while it may seem a little off at first, it will quickly grow on you. It’ll make more sense as you continue watching the series.

Music: The score definitely fits perfectly for the series. Even the opening and ending themes quickly grow on you.

Overall: Definitely worth a try and while there are some awkward moments for the most part this series won’t make you cringe.

For those who like: Ballroom Dancing, Excellent Plot, Fantastic Cast of Characters, Great Artwork, Awesome Musical Score.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Anime Sunday: Knights and Magic Episode 01 Impressions

This week for Anime Sunday I’m covering another series from the Summer 2017 season. It’s my Knights and Magic Episode 01 Impressions!

Plot Synopsis: In a world where medieval knights use giant robots called Silhouette Knights to fight against demon beasts, magical ravenous animals that devour everything on sight. Tsubasa Kurata, a mecha otaku from Japan who gets killed in a car accident is reincarnated in this new parallel world as Ernesti “Eru” Echavalier, a boy born into a noble family…

Plot: The plot pacing of this series is way too fast for my tastes, which is a pity because they could’ve doubled the number of episodes and the series probably would’ve done fairly well. But we’ll never know now most likely. The pace is half a Light Novel volume per episode, so two episodes equals a Light Novel volume. I’ve stated in the past this is just way too fast for most series, and I stand by that statement still.

We don’t get to see Eru’s rebirth and him getting to actually learn magic and come to serious understanding of it and befriend Addy and Kid. Instead the entire School arc is pretty much skipped over, including probably huge plot points that will be key in later arcs. That being said it wasn’t a bad episode, it just went much too fast when I have my own prior knowledge of the actual source material.

Characters: Eru is a decent main character, but we lack a ton of background on him that was glossed over in this first episode. Addy and Kid are severely lacking in character background, which is a pity as Addy’s relationship with Eru is much more expanded upon and makes her look not nearly as childish in the original source material.

Art: The art isn’t bad, but it’s not ufotable quality at all. It could be better, but so could a lot of things with this series.

Music: The music is okay, but it’s not super amazing either.

Overall: This could’ve been a much better Anime, it’s a pity it got so screwed over with this adaptation. That being said it’s still fun to watch, just don’t read the original source material prior to watching. You’ll hate yourself.

For those who like: Fantasy, Mecha, Magic, Action, Drama, Politics.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above, or poor pacing.

Anime Sunday: Isekai Shokudou Episode 01 Impressions

This week for Anime Sunday I’m covering another series from the Summer 2017 Season. It’s my Isekai Shokudou Episode 01 Impressions!

Plot Synopsis: At the bottom floor of the building with a dog signboard, in the shopping district near the office street, there lies a cafeteria called “Youshoku no Nekoya,” that has an illustration of a cat on the door. It’s been open for fifty years and has satisfied various salarymen from nearby offices. Despite it being called a Western cuisine cafeteria, it also provides other varieties of menus. For the people of this certain world, it’s their one-and-only special cafeteria. There is, however, one secret to “Nekoya.” The cafeteria is closed to the public every Saturday in order to make way for special guests. When a bell rings, customers from different places of birth and races appear who ask for mysterious and delicious dishes…

Plot: The plot isn’t action packed, if you are looking for an action filled adventure, you are going to be disappointed. Now if you enjoy Slice of Life crossed with Fantasy and Cooking, Isekai Shokudou is right up your alley. This first episode introduces us to the resturant Nekoya and it’s customers from the other world. It’s quite interesting and while it’s not action packed and really not my usual genres I genuinely enjoyed my time watching this first episodes.

Characters: This episode also introduces us to our main character who everyone calls Owner. We’re also introduced to the Red Empress Dragon and Aletta as well. Frankly I enjoyed all the characters we were introduced to, and can’t wait to see even more introduced.

Art: The artwork is excellent, which is good because it truly conveys how good the food must taste.

Music: The musical score fits the series perfectly, and even the opening and ending themes are pretty appropriate for the series as well.

Overall: If you love food and don’t mind not having a bunch of action this series will be right up your alley. If you want high tension and plenty of action you won’t enjoy as much, probably. Isekai Shokudou has it’s own kind of charm that just makes you enjoy watching it, or at least that’s how I felt after this first episode.  However if you are hungry I suggest not watching this, as it will just make it worse.

For those who like: Fantasy, Isekai, Food, Slice of Life, Excellent Plot, Fantastic Cast of Characters, Awesome Artwork, Great Musical Score.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Anime Sunday: Smartphone Episode 01 Impressions

Hey all I’m back with my first look at the Summer 2017 season’s offerings for this week’s Anime Sunday. It’s my Smartphone Episode 01 Impressions!

Plot Synopsis: 15-year-old Mochizuki Touya  is accidentally struck by lightning and killed by God. As an apology, God allows him to be reborn into a fantasy world along with a single special request. Touya uses his request in order to bring his smartphone into the new world with him.

Plot: It sounds cliche and stereotypical, and it sort of is, but despite that it was a fun adventure and I’ll probably be shamelessly watching the entire series as I highly enjoy the original Web Novel. This first episode covers the first few chapters of the web novel for those out there who may have read it, introducing us to the world where Touya is brought to and a couple of his new companions, Elze and Linze. This looks like it’ll be adaptating multiple arcs, so maybe this series will be more than a single cour? I hope so, as I said I’ll be shamelessly watching the entire series.

Characters: Touya is a remarkably easy going young man, and while he may have just died he’s awfully calm about the whole thing. Elze and Linze were two of our heroines, and they were pretty fun to watch interact with Touya. Honestly though this first episode didn’t introduce many characters. God was pretty funny though.

Art: The art isn’t ufotable quality, but it wasn’t even close to Studio Deen bad, so I’m content.

Music: The music was pretty light and outgoing, which matches the series really well. I wouldn’t say it’s really memorable though.

Overall: A great first episode, in what hopefully will be a multi-cour series. Definitely a watch for any Isekai/Tensei genre fans.

For those who like: Isekai/Tensei Stories, Action, Adventure, Romance, Drama, Comedy, Excellent Plot, Fantastic Cast of Characters, Good Artwork, Fitting Musical Score.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Anime Sunday: Most Anticipated Summer 2017 Anime

This week for Anime Sunday I’m looking this summers selection of Anime. It’s my Most Anticipated Summer 2017 Anime!

Fate/Apocrypha: This is yet another Fate series, so I’m intrigued by it. I’ve not read the original Light Novels, but I’ll probably get around to it sometime. It takes place in an alternate timeline from the Stay Night series, so don’t expect to see Rin and Shirou.

Isekai Shokudou: This is a series I know almost nothing about, but I’ve always had a soft spot for the Isekai genre in particular. The few things I know about this is that it’s about a restaurant that serves food from other worlds for some unknown reason. Should be interesting to watch.

Knights and Magic: I covered the first original light novel a long time ago in my Thursday column, way back when it was still called Light Novel Thursday. It’s another Isekai/Tensei series, but I really enjoyed the main character for using his knowledge about his hobbies in his past life to achieve his dreams in this new life.

Touken Ranbu: This series is based off a game aimed at women, but since it’s animated by my favorite studio, ufotable, I’ll give this a watch regardless that I’m not the main target audience. The game is about swords turned into young attractive men, so we’ll see. It can’t be more weird than a series about talking to guy lying on your bed with. Plus it’s got ufotable animating it, so I’m expecting tons of action animated into excellent sequences.

Isekai wa Smartphone to Tomo ni: This is yet another Isekai/Tensei series, but it’s about a guy who died by accident. So “God” apologizes and decides to reincarnate him into a world of magic and steel with his smartphone. Yea you read that right, his smartphone is his “Cheat” skill. I’ve read the Web Novel a bit, and it was quite good. That being said it is a definite Harem series, but don’t expect a lot of wishy-washy behavior from the lead character like you’d see in something like Infinite Stratos.

Ballroom e Youkouso: I covered the original source material in a Manga Monday a long time ago, but I always though this might become an awesome Anime. So hopefully it lives up to my expectations.

Honorable Mention:

Koi to Uso: It has an interesting premise in that in a near future Japan, due to the decline in children being born every person at the age of sixteen is given a marriage partner by the government. It sounds almost dystopian, but this isn’t from what I’ve heard and read. Which would be a pity because I hate the Dystopia genre in general, and I’d have to avoid this series like the plague.

That’s it for this week’s Anime Sunday!

Delay in Plans

This week instead of the usual Anime Sunday I’m going to make a quick post updating on why I haven’t gotten back to doing a post a day. It’s about my Delay in Plans!

What delay?: Well I really wanted to get back to full steam way back in the middle of May, but circumstances have lead me to be unable to do that. Mostly that’s because I’ve been spending half my time at my parent’s taking care of the family dog who is getting on in years, she’s 13 years old and while she’s still active and mobile she’s started to lose her hearing. This has lead her to being very unhappy when left alone for too long. So any day that my parents are gone for more than 6 hours I end up spending time there. Most of the time before this year I’d have just gone over in the day and walked her and hung out for an hour or two because my folks would be back later that afternoon. Unfortunately that hasn’t been the case these past few months and I’ve been spending entire days at my parents. In addition with all the stress of trying to get my data off my old computer, something I’m still struggling with even as I write this, I’ve been thrown off my pace of being able to churn out daily posts.

So what now?: Well for the time being I’ll still be attempting to give out a weekly review, of either a book or game, and I’ll be keeping to every other day posts. I’m hoping to get back to full steam by August, but at this point I’m reluctant to make any solid promises given how stressed out I’ve been.

That’s it for this little update, Anime Sunday will return in two weeks with a look at the Summer 2017 Anime Season!