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Nick's Recent Activity

Call it laziness or burn-out, but I just haven't had the energy or will to sit down and write about the recent anime I've been watching. Indeed, I've been meaning to write an analysis of the Twelve Kingdoms novel and Fuyumi Ono's interview and a review of Asatte no Houkou (Quite a nice little series that doesn't overextend itself) and Mushishi. As it is, I do have a list of some of the new anime I'm watching:

Currently Watching

Claymore - Episode 4

I've been anticipating this one for a bit, but I was initially approaching it with expectation if it containing the violence and action of say, Berserk, without any of the deeper themes and with a female as the main lead. As it is, Claymore does have violence and action, but it is much less shallow than I was expecting. As I've only seen four episodes of the 26 episode series, it still has room to disappoint (I.E., ignoring or contradicting the early themes it sets, like Elfen Lied did), but for now, I'm going to continue watching this one.

Lucky Star - Episode 3

This one, I basically decided to watch after seeing that high-energy opening. I'm finding it amusing (and occasionally gut-busting funny), though, as I said elsewhere, it has nothing on Azumanga Daioh, like its comedic timing or well established characters. It's definitely gotten quite a bit of talk around the anime blog-o-sphere, but I'll be continuing this one.

Rocket Girls - Episode 2

This was mentioned by bbovenguy as a series that "pays pretty good attention to reality". I decided to check it out, and he's right; this series about the fledgling Japanese manned space program, out side of the silly characters and premise of sending high-school girls into space (They're lighter and smaller than a grown man, you know...) it does seem to pay better-than-average attention to silly concepts like physics.

Ghost Hunt - Episode 13

I picked up Ghost Hunt early on when I realized that it was based on the novels of the same name written by Fuyumi Ono (actually, based on the manga that's based on the novel, but I digress). Though it's been on hiatus since January, I've picked it up again and will probably watch it to the end this time. Though it has few out-right scary scenes, there's been several points that are out-right goosebumps forming creepy! It started out a bit slow and a bit underwhelming in the first arc; those first three episodes largely served to introduce the main characters. And what great and ironic characters they are! The bass-playing monk? The adult and seductive miko? The young Australian priest who learned to speak Japanese from the Kansai region? Hah! I'm sold. And the main protagonist, Mai, makes a very good female lead opposite "Naru", the normally serious male lead who runs a paranormal-investigative company at the age of 17.


Haibane Renmei - Episode 6

I was in the mood to rewatch this one, as it is one of the three animes that are able to consistently get me out of any kind of funk when I watch them. The other two are The Twelve Kingdoms and The Place Promised in Our Early Days, and which one I watch when I feel the edges of depression kicking in really depends on whether I want to watch a long series, a short series, or a movie.

On Hiatus/Future Plans

Saiunkoku Monogatari - Episode 29 (?)

I had watched this until I caught up to the fansub releases in December, and just haven't picked up watching it again (Though I've still been getting the fansubs as they were released). I do plan on starting up on this again, as it was quite entertaining and a rather well told story.

Legend of Galactic Heroes - Episode 50 (?)

So this isn't exactly a new series, but I think it is, from what I've watched so far, the greatest space opera of all time. Though the characterizations and plot exposition is done much like many anime do it in the eighties, the story is very well balanced between two talented individual generals on different sides of an intergalactic war; one side is a democracy much like the modern day U.S., and the other side is more of a aristocratic monarchy much like most of 17th and 18th century Europe. And both generals seem to do more fighting within their respective systems than with each other, as the series takes no pains in hiding the inefficiencies in both political systems.

This is a series I do plan on picking up later.

Windy Tales - Episode 1

I watched the first episode of this series and immediately put it on the back burner to when I have more time to watch it, much like Mushishi. It looks to be a series that I should take my time with.


Moonlight Mile - Episode 3

I had expected this to be closer to Planetes than what I actually saw. The series took reasonably close attention to physics, but watching the two Gary Stu like lead characters stumble (But these rebels planned it that way!) their way into becoming astronauts was just not entertaining to me. And the extremely poor CG and animation (I mean, two guys running on the beach was animated with only 4 frames!) was just extra.

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I have to ask, just how a helicopter hovering at right angle to the horizon squares with physics?

If the 3D in Rocket Girls was the worst ever, characters were merely bad, despite very high facial feature count. They way they deform when turning is plain scary.

Actually, I might be unconsciously comparing it to Moonlight Mile, which sets itself up as an "adult" sci-fi story. Being that Rocket Girls is pretty much a kid's story, it's likely that I'm more willing to forgive some of its faults (That and I didn't notice that particular helicopter scene...). Still, even with the bad 3D in RG, the 3D in MM outright perturbed me from the first episode.

In any case, both are about characters becoming astronauts, but I simply like the characters in Rocket Girls better across the board...

I have the screencaps for the helicopter and a few other awful moments, but not much time to wrap everything required for a post.

I like the story, but it seems to be wrapped into unusually bad animation. I heard that it's an adaptation of a light novel, which would make sense.