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ep. review

Disappearance of Nagato Yuki chan ‒ Episode 4

"Valentine's Day is approaching, and Nagato is determined to give Kyon some valentine's chocolate."
ep. review

Assassination Classroom ‒ Episode 14

"For a show that thrives on being weird and creative, this storyline is simply too generic in its execution."
ep. review

JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders Egypt Arc ‒ Episode 16

"Kakyoin is back in business, but this is not one of the stronger Jojo's fights."
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ANNCast - Aniplex Machina

Marketing specialist for Aniplex of America EJ Rivera drops by the show to chat all things Aniplex, including some sales numbers, upcoming releases, and those pesky prices people love to fight about. ― ANNCast Episode 223: Aniplex Machina Get the Flash Player to see this player. Marketing specialist for Aniplex of America EJ Rivera drops by the show to chat all things Aniplex, including some sales n...
review

Fairy Tail Part 15 BD+DVD

The Grand Magic Games heat up as unscrupulous contenders make the fights more dangerous while ominous powers move behind the scenes. Can Fairy Tail still come out on top? ― Fairy Tail has successfully made the standard shounen tournament arc into something that, if not precisely new, is still interesting even as it maintains the genre standards of increasingly powerful battles and hidden powers. Inde...
ep. review

Ninja Slayer From Animation ‒ Episode 2

"Nothing is more serious and deadly than excellent manners. Nothing!"
ep. review

Naruto Shippuden ‒ Episode 409

"It's tiresome to see Sakura squander her screen time reminiscing about characters who have already received more than enough focus."
ep. review

Punch Line ‒ Episode 3

"Punch Line will never be as weird as last year's World Conquest Zvezda Plot, but it certainly isn't for lack of effort."
ep. review

My Love Story!! ‒ Episode 3

"It's a fresh, invigorating take on its genre, one that really shows a willingness to try new things."
column

House of 1000 Manga - Kakukaku Shikajika

If you were ever curious what life was like for the woman who created Princess Jellyfish, Jason has the manga for you. ― Kakukaku Shikajika “I want to go back in time and beat up that moron.” —Akiko Higashimura, and many other artists, talking about their younger self Few artists “live the dream” of becoming a professional when they're still a teenager. When I was a kid I dreamed of being a horror a...
ep. review

Wish Upon the Pleiades ‒ Episode 3

"Wish Upon the Pleiades took several steps forward this week, but it also took some huge steps back."
ep. review

Gintama ‒ Episode 268

"While this episode does a fair job of amusing loyal viewers, it offers little in the way of originality."
ep. review

Kyōkai no Rinne ‒ Episode 3

"While Rinne and Sakura continue to traverse the worlds of the living and the dead, other elements of the plot that inhabit these liminal spaces become more pronounced."
ep. review

Sound! Euphonium ‒ Episode 3

"Unless the band can pull together, there will be no concert appearances for them."
review

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past GN

Straight from your childhood and the pages of Nintendo Power, Manga great Shotaro Ishinomori puts his own spin on the classic Nintendo game. ― Link, that pantsless elven hero of many a video game, is back from the dead pages of Nintendo Power Magazine! For fans of the Nintendo franchise The Legend of Zelda who were either not subscribing to the Nintendo Power Magazine in 1992 or are not familiar with...
ep. review

Mikagura School Suite ‒ Episode 3

"A series like this is like a shark: it needs to keep moving if it wants to stay alive."
column

Tales Of The Industry - The Mecha Saw Combat

A harrowing story of survival, police, danger, high speeds and car wrecks involving a giant mecha, playing out in real life the streets of Los Angeles! ― Welcome to “Tales of the Industry,” a column where we will share stories from real working professionals in the anime business. This week, we have another anonymous tale contributed by a current or former members of the industry, with details chang...
ep. review

Heroic Legend of Arslan ‒ Episode 3

"Arslan is obviously concerned with bigger ideas than the average fantasy-adventure anime."
review

Tokyo Ravens BD+DVD part 1

It's an anime series involving magic teenagers at a magic school for magic people! Theron Martin investigates to find out what makes this one stand out. ― When Tokyo Ravens debuted in the Fall 2013 TV season, its adaptation of the eponymous light novel series failed to impress me with its first episode, and that does not change much on a repeat view. Indeed, the first episode is arguably the weakest ...
column

Shelf Life - False Hopes

Lots of new releases this week. Plus, love triangles, angsty romances, and more:
- A Certain Scientific Railgun s1
- Looking Up At The Half-Moon
- Nisekoi v3
― Jump to this week's reviews: Looking Up At the Half-MoonA Certain Magical Railgun season 1Nisekoi volume 3. On Shelves This Week Devil Survivor 2: The Animation - Complete Collection Sentai - 325 min - Hyb - MSRP $69.98Currently cheapest at: ...
ep. review

Show By Rock!! ‒ Episode 3

"Just like the first two episodes, this week's installment bites off a little more than it can chew."
feature

Anime Spotlight - Food Wars: Shokugeki no Soma

Soma Yukihira is ready to take his culinary battle skills to the next level! ― Food Wars: Shokugeki no Soma Visit the Official Site › Story Characters Trailer Cast & Staff Gallery Broadcast Begins April 2015 (JST) Key Staff Director: Yoshitomo Yonetani (Brigadoon, Ghastly Prince Enma Burning Up ) Series Composition: Shogo Yasukawa (Terraformars, Invaders of the Rokujyoma!?) Character Design: Tomoyuk...
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Anime Spotlight - Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?

Adventure, wealth, and maybe a new girlfriend? Let the dungeon crawl begin! ― Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? Visit the Official Site › Story Characters Trailer Cast & Staff Gallery Broadcast Begins April 2015 (JST) Key Staff Director: Yoshinobu Yamakawa (Little Busters!, Kill Me Baby) Series Composition: Hideki Shirane (Date A Live, Aria the Scarlet Ammo) Theme Song Performance (O...
ep. review

Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches ‒ Episode 2

"This may be a dumb comedy at heart, but it has the brain of a much smarter series."
ep. review

Gunslinger Stratos: The Animation ‒ Episode 3

"The episode was focused purely on world-building, and not very well either."
ep. review

Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign ‒ Episode 3

"While the story may be ripped beat-for-beat from the shonen action series playbook, it's an efficient execution of the genre."
ep. review

Plastic Memories ‒ Episode 3

"Plastic Memories hasn't yet regained its first episode's heights, but it's still on the right track. Let's just drop the preoccupation with Isla's plastic mammaries."
ep. review

Kuroko's Basketball ‒ Episode 15

"Like last week, this episode's story is told in increasingly erratic, choppy scenes that each convey a darker mood than the last."
ep. review

Uta no Prince-sama - Maji Love Revolutions ‒ Episode 3

"There are some artistic issues this week, with a lot of off-model faces, particularly on characters far from the screen, whether they are primaries or background roles."
ep. review

Sailor Moon Crystal ‒ Episode 20

"A couple of lovely art deco-inspired pictures of Sailor Moon can't make up for the messed up proportions, flat, derpy faces, and characters recognizable only by their colors."
column

The Mike Toole Show - Club Hosoda

Mike goes in-depth with two of beloved director Mamoru Hosoda's lesser-known films, a One Piece movie that's an unsubtle allegory for his time at Ghibli and Digimon: Our War Game. ― Every once in a while, someone asks me why I haven't written too extensively about One Piece, Eiichiro Oda's sprawling saga of straw-hat pirates. The simple fact is, I haven't had the time to absorb enough of it – I've go...
ep. review

High School DxD BorN ‒ Episode 3

"Even when this show shifts into a serious and dramatic mode – as it does for most of this episode – it still finds time and space for fan service."
ep. review

Blood Blockade Battlefront ‒ Episode 3

"The fact that this show has a compelling story and likable characters is almost icing on the cake for how solid the production is across every single frame."
ep. review

JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders Egypt Arc ‒ Episode 15

"It's not the defeat of Pet Shop, but everything that comes afterward that makes this episode so special."
ep. review

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works ‒ Episode 15

"This marks week two of ufotable knocking it out of the park with anime-original material."
ep. review

My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU TOO!

"SNAFU is full of good kids making exactly the kind of wincingly relatable mistakes that exemplify precocious, lonely adolescence."
ep. review

Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? ‒ Episode 3

With the glimpse into Bell's start as an adventurer, we're getting a better idea of how Bell and Hestia's bond was formed and continues to grow.
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The List - 7 Anime About the Performing Arts

Those who tread beneath the proscenium arch take the spotlight this week as The List highlights anime all about the performing arts. ― Last week's column was all about women flexing their athletic muscles, so this week we're looking at the other side the coin: performing arts. The traditional Western performing arts include music, theatre, dance, comedy, and opera. In the East, performing arts expan...
review

Dengeki Daisy GN 16

Dengeki Daisy's final volume arrives, but does it provide a sufficiently happy ending for those we care about? ― Few series, shoujo or otherwise, have consistently retained the air of excitement, tension, and romance that Kyousuke Motomi's Dengeki Daisy has over its sixteen volume run. While the story shifted from high school romance to technological thriller, essentially settling on a “romantic susp...
ep. review

Food Wars! Shokugeki no Soma ‒ Episode 3

"If the world of Food Wars were suddenly to sink in the ocean, most of the characters wouldn't need flotation devices – they could all just bob along on their enormous egos."
ep. review

Nisekoi:

"Nisekoi has always been a bit more artistically ambitious than most other harem series, and this second episode is probably its most ambitious."
ep. review

The Disappearance of Nagato Yuki chan

"Though the first two episodes were basically just Nagato and Kyon's Harmless High School Life, the third episode has seen Haruhi staging a full-scale invasion of their club."
ep. review

Assassination Classroom ‒ Episode 13

"This episode accomplishes its goal of adding some depth to a pair of previously flat characters."
column

Answerman - Funny Story About That Simulcast...

With everybody now knowing how crazy anime production is, Justin goes into the details of just how crazy simulcasting it is. Also, the crazy rules behind SAG-AFTRA voice actors, and new seemingly-free manga sites. ― Good news. The clouds have parted, the sky has brightened, and my workload has lessened. I am now 16 episodes into SHIROBAKO. I have developed an odd obsession with "Andes Chucky," even ...
column

The Vision of ANNCastaflowne

Zac dusts off his distant past with Hope and Podigious' Ashley McDonnell, revisiting the beloved fantasy classic Escaflowne, which may or may not have a completely bananas second half and a terrible movie version. ― The Vision of ANNCastaflowne Get the Flash Player to see this player. Zac dusts off his distant past with Hope and Podigious' Ashley McDonnell, revisiting the beloved fantasy classic Esc...
review

Yatterman Night Episodes 1-12 Streaming

Yatterman Night turns a classic children’s show into a story of dystopian struggle, but a lack of consistency threatens to bring the show to its knees. ― Yatterman Night's a strange one. Technically a “sequel” to the 70s cartoon Yatterman, it's akin to 2013's Gatchaman Crowds - an anime that takes a classic children's show and reenvisions it as a heavier piece for a new audience. In Crowds' case, thi...
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Anime Spotlight - Triage X

Evil cannot hide from the swift justice of Black Label! ― Triage X Visit the Official Site › Story Characters Trailer Cast & Staff Gallery Broadcast Begins April 2015 (JST) Key Staff Original Work: Shoji Sato ( High School of the Dead (Original Art)) Director: Takao Kato (Buso Renkin, Over Drive) Series Composition: Katsuhiko Takayama (Aldnoah.Zero, Baka and Test- Summon the Beasts) Introduction The...
ep. review

Ninja Slayer From Animation

Mike Toole begins his perilous journey seeking the secrets of Studio Trigger's bombastic new comedy, Ninja Slayer!
ep. review

Naruto Shippuden ‒ Episode 408

"Each of these pieces would work well on its own, but together, they come across as a rushed, choppy mess."
ep. review

Wish Upon the Pleiades

"It's a paint-by-numbers magical girl show, and if that feels fresh, it's mostly because no one's done it in a while."
ep. review

Punch Line

"Nothing else this season really resembles Punch Line."
review

Genshiken: Second Season GN 5

Genshiken takes a turn for the absurd in a volume stuffed with farces both intentional and not so much. ― Honestly, it can sometimes be kinda hard to review Genshiken. The manga's just too consistent! The art is always crisp, character work always thoughtful, dialogue always grounded and natural. It can be tricky to find new things to highlight every volume, because the volumes all tend to be roughly...
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House of 1000 Manga - A Drifting Life

Shaenon conquers legendary mangaka Yoshihiro Tatsumi's enormous (and enormously beloved) autobiographical opus. ― A Drifting Life Yoshihiro Tatsumi passed away last month, bringing an end to one of the most remarkable careers in manga. Happily, he chronicled a sizeable chunk of it in his 2009 doorstopper of a manga memoir, A Drifting Life, which should be required reading for all who would dare call...
ep. review

My Love Story!!

"My Love Story!!'s premise sounds like a gimmick, but it's already transcended that in so many ways."
ep. review

Gintama

"You have to be an irreverent comedy fan first and a shonen action fan second to truly enjoy Gintama, and if you enter the series with that mindset, you're sure to walk away entertained."
ep. review

Kyōkai no Rinne

"RIN-NE has a squishy and comforting, but decidedly bland beginning."
column

The X Button - Storm Watching

This week: part one of a Bandai Namco bonanza with Naruto, Project X Zone, and Saint Seiya! Plus Star Ocean, Dungeon Travelers, and a voice from Nintendo’s past! ― I found Bandai Namco's Global Gamers Day modest. This wasn't because of the games shown there. It was because the whole thing occurred in the sedate meeting rooms of New York New York, one of those hotel-casino fiefdoms that takes up an e...
review

My Love Story!! GN 4

My Love Story!! is the shoujo romance for people sick of shoujo romances. ― The central conceit of this collaboration between High School Debut's Kazune Kawahara and Aruko for the first three volumes was that Takeo was such a big, muscular, unattractive guy that no one but Yamato could possibly want to date him. Even Takeo bought into this idea – for most of his dating life, girls were attracted to h...
ep. review

Mikagura School Suite

"There's a show in here somewhere, but the details are drowned out by a relentless barrage of blinding enthusiasm."
ep. review

Sound! Euphonium

"Kyoto Animation productions are always beautiful, but Sound! Euphonium so far seems to be on another level."
feature

Nagi no Asukara: We Need Your Questions!

We're taking questions for the director and producer of Nagi no Asukara (A Lull in the Sea), as well as voice actress Kana Hanazawa! Find out how to participate! ― We're currently working on an interview series with three members of the creative staff from Nagi no Asukara (A Lull in the Sea), which hits bluray this summer on June 30, with a standard edition DVD on July 14 from NIS America, and we wa...
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The Set List - Top 10 EDs of 2004

Hope flips the script and travels back in time to count down the 10 best ending themes of 2004. ― Following on the heels of last week's OPs of 2004 list, it's time to look at the opposite end: the best ED themes from 2004! The OP list was mostly filled with old favorites, but this week's list is a little more eclectic and weird, so keep your ears peeled for some surprising ED picks from anime titles...
review

Death Parade Episodes 1-12 Streaming

Death Parade spins out a simple death-game premise into a story full of surprises. Does this morbid drama rise to the occasion or collapse entirely? ― Released as part of the 2013 crop of the Anime Mirai young animator project, Death Billiards had a very simple premise. Two men find themselves in a strange bar, Quindecim, where they are told they must play a game of pool before they can leave. Eventu...
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Anime Spotlight - The Labyrinth of Grisaia / The Eden of Grisaia

Yuji Kazami saved the hearts of five girls at Mihama Academy however his heart still carries a burden that may never heal. ― The Labyrinth of Grisaia (Grisaia no Meikyu - Le Labyrinthe de la Grisaia)/The Eden of Grisaia (Grisaia no Rakuen - Le Eden de la Grisaia) Visit the Official Site › Story Characters Trailer Cast & Staff Gallery Broadcast Begins April 12, 2015 (JST) Key Staff Director: Tensho (...
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Shelf Life - Ultimate Space Pirate

This week's releases. Plus, space adventures, harems, and the end of the world with She, The Ultimate Weapon, Space Pirate Mito, and Student Council's Discretion. ― Jump to this week's reviews: She, The Ultimate Weapon (Saikano), Space Pirate Mito, and Student Council's Discretion. On Shelves This Week Noir Complete Collection BD (Anime Classics) Funimation - 650 min - Hyb - MSRP $49.98Currently che...
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Fan Q&A: Sumi Shimamoto

The voice of Nausicaa, Maison Ikkoku's Kyoko, and dozens of other iconic roles takes fan questions about her legendary career. ― This panel was conducted at Sakuracon 2015. PANEL MODERATOR: Let's welcome our guest of honor, Shimamoto Sumi-san. She is an extremely talented and famous voice actress who has been in the industry for a long, long time. One of her most famous roles, her breakout role, was ...
review

Unbreakable Machine-Doll [Limited Edition] BD+DVD

Advanced dolls controlled by magic are the focus of this light novel-based series that maybe feels a little incomplete. ― This entry from the Fall 2013 TV season is a 12-episode series which really should have been 24 episodes long instead. This is not a case of the production trying to cram too much into one series, however; based on the episode naming conventions, the animation probably covers the ...
ep. review

Yamada-kun to 7-nin no Majo

"This series leans heavily toward the comedy end of the body-swap story spectrum, but there's a reasonably clever spark hiding behind all the dumb fun."
ep. review

Show By Rock!!

"It's like a pinch of DiGi Charat, a dash of The iDOLM@ster and a quart of Sanrio-style magical girls mixed together and thrown into a frenetic cyberpunk setting."
ep. review

Heroic Legend of Arslan

"It's clear Tanaka did a lot of research on his choice of setting, and it will be interesting to see what path Arslan takes for himself."
ep. review

Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign

"Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign shows that you don't have to be smart to be entertaining."
ep. review

Uta no Prince-sama - Maji Love Revolutions

"While it is short on plot, it's long on loveliness, from the varied backgrounds to the boys themselves."
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The Spring 2015 Anime Preview Guide

The Spring 2015 Anime Preview Guide has wrapped up! Check out previews of this spring's biggest shows, including:
Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches - Blood Blockade Battlefront - Nisekoi: - PUNCH LINE - ETOTAMA - Wish Upon the Pleiades - Mikagura School Suite - and much more!
― Welcome to Anime News Network's Spring 2015 Preview Guide! Here's how it goes: our team of critics write up their impression...
ep. review

Blood Blockade Battlefront

"While the story itself is simple material, it's the two powerful artistic voices behind the wheel that drive this setup over the edge to make it striking and unique instead."
review

Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches GN 1

Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches may not be flying along, but it features a take on the gender swapping genre that we don't get to see as often. ― As far as gender-bending body-swapping stories go, Yamada-Kun and the Seven Witches is one of the nicest. I don't mean that in the sense that it's sweet and happy or conflict free, but rather in that there is a lack of the inherent meanness that seems to h...
ep. review

Gunslinger Stratos: The Animation

"On the heels of a mediocre first episode, Gunslinger Stratos: The Animation is beginning to show some promise."
ep. review

High School DxD BorN

"The first episode suggested that Koneko was finally going to get her backstory turn, and episode 2 delivers on that."
ep. review

Kuroko's Basketball ‒ Episodes 13-14

"For a show that often gets stuck in an episode-long rut of anxiety or anger, these episodes are an extremely welcome depiction of the series' range."
ep. review

Plastic Memories

"Plastic Memories has a lot of potential, and I hope it achieves more than just straightforward melodrama."
ep. review

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works ‒ Episode 14

"This week's emphasis on new original material works out well."
ep. review

Food Wars! Shokugeki no Soma

"While Food Wars has its issues, there is one thing it is difficult to deny – it does a great job with tension. "
ep. review

Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?

"These first two episodes show some innovation and dedicated world building that make it both fun and unique."
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The List - 7 Anime About Women in Sports

Anime about female athletes are a time-honored tradition. Here are seven examples of women who bring it hard on the court and also, you know, solve murders and stuff. ― Sports fans got exciting news this weekend with Yen Press picking up competitive biking manga Yowamushi Pedal. Sentai Filmworks also plans to bring the hit volleyball anime Haikyu!! our way. Both these announcements are important, be...
ep. review

The Idol M@ster Cinderella Girls ‒ Episode 13

"There's another season coming this summer, but to be quite honest, this final episode doesn't feel like it needs any follow up."
ep. review

JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders Egypt Arc ‒ Episode 14

"It's finally Iggy's time to shine, and he's definitely met his match in a falcon named Pet Shop."
ep. review

Assassination Classroom ‒ Episode 12

"The show's writing is getting better at dealing with characters who aren't goofy yellow mutants with apocalyptic intentions."
ep. review

Naruto Shippuden ‒ Episode 407

"There's more action when you compare it to Sakura and Ino's studying montage from last week, but the episode's substandard animation easily drops it a grade."
column

Answerman - Record Town and Media Play

Justin really wants to just watch SHIROBAKO, but instead he's answering your questions. Like, if physical media will ever give way entirely to streaming, and how to contribute when you're too young to have a credit card. ― This is a special kind of torture. All week, I've been wanting to do do nothing but watch Shirobako. I got to episode 5, and I'm hooked. The only problem is, this has been one of ...
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House of 1000 Manga - Kazuhiko Shimamoto

Jason's series on manga about manga continues with a blood-pumping journey through the work of hotblooded Blazing Transfer Student mangaka Kazuhiko Shimamoto. ― Kazuhiko Shimamoto “I’m just a fanatical hot-blooded mangaka! I can teach you about plot structure, but I can’t give you relationship advice!” “It’s not enough to burn only in your own world! In the face of a crisis, will your burning heart ...
feature

Anime Spotlight - The Disappearance of Nagato Yuki chan

Yuki Nagato has fallen in love.... ― The Disappearance of Nagato Yuki chan Visit the Official Site › Story Characters Trailer Cast & Staff Gallery Broadcast Begins April 2015 (JST) Key Staff Series Composition: Touko Machida (Lucky Star, The Idolmaster) Original Character Design: Noizi Ito ( The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, Shakugan no Shana) Introduction This time around, the heroine in this "Dis...
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Sakuracon 2015: Wit Studio Q&A

The creative team behind the smash hit Attack on Titan and Winter 2015's unique road trip anime The Rolling Girls take a bunch of questions at Sakuracon. ― PM: Hello everyone, it's an honor for me to introduce our four guests today from Wit Studio. First, I would like to introduce Wit Studio assistant producer Yusuke Ueda. YUSUKE UEDA: [English] Hello, everyone. I am Yusuke Ueda from Wit Studio. [Jap...
review

Yona of the Dawn Episodes 1-24 Streaming

This shojo adventure has been heralded as one of the most satisfying examples of the genre in ages, but does it live up to the hype? ― There are more than enough anime out there about medieval princesses with reverse harems. It was a big enough genre in the 1990s and early 2000s to spawn multiple parodies. So, a decade and a half late to the party, what Yona of the Dawn offers to set itself apart is ...

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