Completely irrevelent picture to start off this post -Gao!
The New Year has finally arrived! Well, technically for me it will only be official in a hour. I just wanted to wish everyone a great new year and I hope you all get to spend it happily and healthy (that line is probably said too often, but I couldn’t come up with anything better). Anyway, unlike like usually, I haven’t given any thought to my “new year resolutions”, but it’s not like I ever follow them much anyway. 2008 was a great year for anime and you’ll be seeing more on my reflection of the year through anime when I get all my “late end of year lists posts” up. It’ll be great to see what the new year brings, but I guess we really can only take it one day at a time. In the meantime, have a great 2009!
And a picture of Fuko because it has already become a one year tradition to mention her somewhere in my post 😀
This list is late and so will all my other lists be, but I hope nobody will mind. Well, I’ve actually written out all my planned lists, I’m just in the presentation process, but I’ve managed to finish this list completely and I’m pretty happy with my choices. To save myself some time though, I decided not to comment about each opening and ending, but I will say a thing or two in other lists. So enjoy! Read More…
I can recognize the faults this series may have, but sometimes when I watch something that becomes so amusing, these faults don’t really matter anymore and Kannagi is one of those cases. So, now that I’ve finished the 13 episode series, I decided that it would be worth the time to write a short review about it. The story is about a boy name Jin who is giving a piece of a sacred tree from a friend to carve. Little does he know, that after he carves it, it turns into a real girl. Naturally, no normal human would originate out of a piece of wood, and this girl known as Nagi claims to be none other than a Goddess. Though it doesn’t end at that either, she also fights off impurities, which is only the beginning of the wackiness!
With a simple plot as I’ve basically described it as, you would expect Kannagi to be like another other series, but after just the first episode, you can already see how it sets itself apart from anything else. The plot is strongest at the beginning and end considering the middle had some unneeded, yet amusing episodes. The characters are some of the best from any series. I find that the relationship between the people in the art club to be actually relatively realistic. Naturally, it is exaggerated in scenarios and such, but the way some of them act with one another is a pretty good depiction to real life. Though, when the characters are just over the top and outrageous there a joy to watch as well. Within 13 episodes, you were really able to depict each of their separate personalities, even if there wasn’t much development between them besides our main characters.
The animation is very consistent and smooth; it has some nice details that go well with the setting. The character design itself is pretty simple, but I liked it just the same. The soundtrack for the series isn’t really anything to rave about, most of the only music used throughout the series was in the last episode and it wasn’t really anything amazing anyway. The only thing that really stands out when it comes to the soundtrack would be both the opening and ending themes, which are fantastic!
The series manages to incorporate a bit of everything, although mostly comedy, except this is probably where the main fault is. Kannagi is just a bit all over the place when it comes to genres and transitions from one story to the next. Though, even if there isn’t much consistency, at least each thing it tries to be is done well. When it comes to the enjoyment factor of the series, I can without a doubt say that there is plenty of it! I’m not sure how others feel about this anime, but while I was watching it, I was always so amused and even now as I look back on it all, I still will keep to the statement that this series is indeed one of the most entertaining of the year. When it all comes down, a series has to entertain me above all things, which is exactly what Kannagi did, which is why I enjoyed the series so much. I would really recommend this series to almost anyone considering its genre, which isn’t really one thing, can be enjoyed by most. I’m actually surprised that this series hasn’t been licensed yet, but I can imagine Bandai Entertainment licensing this in a few months (don’t ask why I think Bandai). Well, in the meantime, I will be hoping for a second season!
Pocky is the food of Love!
Well, as a before note, I briefly want to mention that I will not be continuing to blog Skip Beat, this is really only because it now seems to be confirmed that it will be a 25 episode series and I don’t really want to have to carry the series on through the next season because I already have Clannad. I’m enjoying the series even if it isn’t as great as I want it to be, so it’s not like I’m dropping it or anything. This way though, I’ll get to blog more of the winter season, which has barely any animes worth watching anyway, but for the few that look good it has got me excited. Some other big news is that I have finally completely caught up with blogging! Knowing that Clannad is on a mini hiatus and such, I can now finally finish some posts that I’ve been planning out for a while! I won’t be going into details on them yet, but I guess you’ll be seeing them soon anyway!
For episode 11, the main point that we just need to understand is that Ichiru and Zero both became injured and through love, Zero sucked out all of Ichiru’s power to make himself whole. There were a few other details, but really nothing that served too much of a purpose. Basically, Shiki now back as himself goes to apologize to Rima and they have there own little moment with a box of Pocky. Sadly, I can already tell that this is the most we’ll get from them, but at least it was cute. The episode also consisted of many moments of younger Zero and Ichiru having their little bonding times as twins. I don’t really see why they have to sleep in the same bed together, I’ve never liked the whole aspect having twins being the same, though my main problem is that they chose to be together because of Ichiru, but they have their separate beds! It just sort of annoys me to see twins who have their parents dress them the same or whatever because why would anyone want to look the same as someone else? I also consider these moments between Ichiru and Zero to sadly be the most romantic thing that I’ve seen all season. Also, on the romantic page, I think that Kaname would win the prize of being the least romantic this season. The only thing he has really done is force Yuki into a relationship and then let her discover that they were really brother and sister. After that, he basically wants to keep her locked in his room so that she’s “safe”, but considering Yuki still has some proud, she evidently disagreed with him and left without permission. As much as it sounds like I am this complete Kaname hater, that isn’t really the case, I believe he has the looks, but just not the personality.
In season one he was at least a little more sensitive and emotional towards Yuki, rather than now, which just seems more like a love that is forced on. One of the problems I have with this series in the big pile of many is that they always use the same camera angles. One episode they decided to do rack shots, but one is a suitable amount in an episode, yet used the effect at least 5 times! In most episodes, they basically only shot face angles, which isn’t bad for every series, but for Vampire Knight, it gradually just becomes boring. It also seems like every single character in this series now has long hair, Shiki’s hair is even seeming particularly longer and I personally find that Yuki looked better in the shorter look… The direction that the ending of this anime will take is becoming pretty clear now, in the sense that the main obstacle is going to be defeating Rido. Was I the only one who felt disturbed by the bunch of vampire girls wearing barely anything getting the blood sucked dry, but the weird part was that they weren’t really trying to save themselves, but rather accepting their fate?
So in episode 12, Rido continues to prove how he has a giant appetite. He has a whole pile of bodies wherever he goes to feed on, I’d imagine that he would eventually get full? I guess it must be some sort of Vampire Power that we don’t know about yet. All his followers that are vampires that have fallen to Level E were actually creeping me out in this episode, but it can be easily explained as I was playing “Left 4 Dead” at a friend’s today and now anything that remotely shares the characters and movements to a zombie freaks me out so much! The mixture between this game and Vampire Knight is not a good match! As the episode develops, Rido and Yuki with her gang meets up with him and try to defeat him, but fail for the time being and he tries to start some sort of feeding frenzy, but right on cue, Yuki’s Artemis transforms into a much cooler weapon that she can now handle. Zero also makes an appearance with his super power thing going on as well. Though, before he manages to do anything effective his arm starts acting up and gets all bulgy and ugly. I admit to chuckling in this scene, how could anyone not believe that his arm looked absolutely ridiculous? His arm eventually went back to its original shape, but now Zero gets a level up on his weapon too, but Kaname claims at the end that flashing lights coming from guns is not a good sign, which I would agree makes sense.
It seems the series has detached itself slightly more than usual from the mangas story, which gives me hope that we might get an anime original ending, but even if we don’t I don’t mind too much, I’ve already long lost any positive expectations for this series. Well, not keeping so religiously to the manga, did make the episode more enjoyable because that way it becomes more unexpected, but I think the original author should be worried considering if they don’t follow her ideas, the director will go right ahead and almost blow up Zero’s arm! In the end, the episode did have a good build-up, that sets us up well for the finale. The only thing I really want is for Yuki to actually choose someone, but somehow I can already predict that it won’t be happening.