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EP. REVIEW: Hypnosis Mic -Division Rap Battle- Rhyme Anima


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RenRen94



Joined: 08 Jul 2018
Posts: 144
PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 4:08 pm Reply with quote
I completely lost my shit when "I Am Ichiro" started playing in episode 2, and proceeded to sing along enthusiastically. That song is a bop, no questions asked. I will admit that Matenro was my least favorite team, but Doppo was so endearing that he won me over, so the Matenro episode ended up being pretty solid. Can't wait for the Fling Posse and MTC episodes!

The thing that I love about HypMic is that you can tell the VAs are having a blast, especially Subaru Kimura. His energy is infectious and it comes across in his performances and lyrics (he actually wrote a few songs for Buster Bros, including "Run This City" featured in episode 2). If you ever have the chance, look up some of the live performances, the more-accessible Division All Stars group songs (most recently, Summit of Divisions), and Femme Fatale performed by Party of Words (it will however, spoil the identity of the third member).
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rahzel rose
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 6:15 pm Reply with quote
I’m glad this show is turning out to be as ridiculous as I hoped it would. It’s great to come home on Friday after a long work week and watch this as the start to my weekend.

Also, yes, Lynzee, I wholeheartedly agree that Doppo is the best. Kent does such a good job with him!! Jyuta and Gentarou are my next faves so I’m excited for the upcoming MTC and FP shenanigans.
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Blood-
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Joined: 07 Mar 2009
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 7:25 pm Reply with quote
For me, this show is a prime example of why it is imperative to check things out even if it doesn't sound like it's in your wheelhouse. I'm not into rap or hip-hop and I normally stay away from shows that are sausage fests, so when I read the description of this before its premiere, I was all like, "hard pass." But then the previewers were enthusiastic so I checked it out and am I ever glad I did. Total blast.
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JaffaOrange



Joined: 01 Apr 2011
Posts: 158
PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 8:32 pm Reply with quote
I find the songs pretty meh but I don't really listen to hip-hop that often. For those more into that scene, how would you rate the songs in the show?

The show itself is ludicrous enough to be entertaining though.
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rahzel rose
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 9:40 pm Reply with quote
JaffaOrange wrote:
I find the songs pretty meh but I don't really listen to hip-hop that often. For those more into that scene, how would you rate the songs in the show?

At least for hypmic specifically, the songs in the show don’t really compare to the actual releases that have been put out so far, but for the purpose they’re serving, they’re not bad. “Ore ga Ichiro” aka the song Ichiro sings (raps?) as he’s walking down the street in episode 2 is one of my favorite solo songs. “Bayside Smoking Blues” by Jyuto is another one.

I really like some of the battle songs, the best of which, IMO, are “Battle Battle Battle” (Matenrou vs FP) and “Death Respect” (Matenrou vs MTC). But my absolute, hands down, best, favorite song so far is “Stella” by FP. It’s up on the official YouTube channel and I believe all songs are on Spotify as well if anyone is interested in checking them out.
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RenRen94



Joined: 08 Jul 2018
Posts: 144
PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 10:01 pm Reply with quote
rahzel rose wrote:
I really like some of the battle songs, the best of which, IMO, are “Battle Battle Battle” (Matenrou vs FP) and “Death Respect” (Matenrou vs MTC).

I second those, and will include WAR WAR WAR (Buster Bros vs MTC). Hopefully some of these songs will be used in the Division Rap Battle, or maybe they'll make new content.
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KitKat1721



Joined: 03 Feb 2015
Posts: 374
PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 10:56 pm Reply with quote
There's no way I won't watch this show from beginning to end, easily the best comedy of the season.
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Puniyo



Joined: 08 Oct 2015
Posts: 242
PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2020 11:20 am Reply with quote
JaffaOrange wrote:
I find the songs pretty meh but I don't really listen to hip-hop that often. For those more into that scene, how would you rate the songs in the show?

The show itself is ludicrous enough to be entertaining though.


Outside of the anime and main story, the franchise sort of positions itself as "baby's first introduction to rap" (the catchphrase for all the live shows and streams is "rap is fun", after all), so the songs are styled more to act as a gateway into different styles of rap and there's some genre-blend experimentation going on. Some songs and styles hit more than others do, but generally the music is just fun and I think that's the point.

The anime's been incredibly fun so far, even if I'm a bit biased as a long-time fan. I love how Doppo, mr.regular schlub who no one in-universe remembers his name, is probably the most popular character overall. He routinely tops character popularity polls.
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MorwenLaicoriel



Joined: 26 Feb 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2020 3:04 pm Reply with quote
Count me as another person on the Doppo love train. I was diagnosed with bipolar II in my mid-20s, and not being diagnosed for a while lead to me learning a lot of bad coping mechanisms and gaining a lot of anxiety as a result, so his insecurities, tendency toward being a doormat and explosive temper in the battles is really relatable to me. He's my favorite character, tied with Jakurai (because Sho Hayami is great, and the character is so unabashedly weird and cool).

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Doc Jinguji's style does absolutely nothing for me and lacks any kind of rhythm. Instead, it sounds like a lecture being played over the backbeats. Maybe that's the point?


Yeah, probably. He's a character that's prone to lectures in general. Despite him being one of my favorite characters I'm not a huge fan of his rapping, either. I think I've heard that he's maybe basing his style on some sort of traditional Japanese poetry (although that sounds like maybe a Gentaro thing, actually?). If so, that's a cool idea, but...since I can't speak Japanese and I'm not very skilled with poetry it doesn't come through at all. I do feel like when he's forced to like...rap by himself in the group songs, which have more traditional rap beats, he's gotten better (Battle Battle Battle, Survival of the Illest, Summit of Divisions, etc).

Overall, I think the music made for the albums is better than the music in the show (the only track so far that was taken from the albums, Ore ga Ichiro/My Name is Ichiro, is definitely the best song in the show so far--that's the Ichiro solo song he was rapping while walking down the street). I'm not super familiar with rap, but I do suspect that in terms of actual hip-hop the music in the show is only 'okay'--although that being said, I've gotten the impression that a lot of the music for the series is actually written and composed by hip-hop artists from Japan, so I think the writing is great but...you know, most of the voice actors don't really have any background in rap, so while they've gotten better it can still be hit-or-miss.

I think Ichiro's VA, Subaru Kimura, is usually pretty great--he also rapped in Dance with Devils, and I wouldn't be surprised if he's got a background in it. I also really like the direction they've gone with Ramuda's rapping, and Doppo's solo songs are two of my favorites. I definitely recommend checking out their stuff on Spotify and YouTube to get a better taste of what they've done with the series! I second the recommendations for Battle Battle Battle and Stella, and I also really like Tigridia, BLACK or WHITE (the two Doppo songs I mentioned), Requiem (which samples Verdi's Dies Irae to amazing effect) and Scramble Gamble (which is...just a bop. I don't think it has the best rapping ever, but I don't care, that BASS).

Which I just noticed are all solo songs, lol. I guess since they're focused on one character that gives the composers a chance to focus on more unique styles?
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rahzel rose
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Joined: 19 Apr 2011
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2020 3:21 pm Reply with quote
MorwenLaicoriel wrote:
I think I've heard that he's maybe basing his style on some sort of traditional Japanese poetry (although that sounds like maybe a Gentaro thing, actually?).

You’re not wrong, actually. According to an interview with Hayami, he said “Jakurai’s rap is like poetry reading, and Gadoro, who is famous in this style, was in charge of the demo.”

Gadoro performed during the 2nd live, I believe, and his music was very much like Meikyuu Heki/Labyrinth Wall. He was also GREAT and he’s on Spotify as well.
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Takkun4343



Joined: 19 Jul 2007
Posts: 1103
Location: Gahanna, Ohio
PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2020 4:44 pm Reply with quote
You know, when I first started watching this, I was under the impression that the Party of Words' takeover of the Japanese government was a standard democratic election thing, what with them only really banning conventional lethal weapons and life going on as usual in Tokyo outside of that, and the whole "totalitarian" angle the series description was going for with them was just them getting a little too into being the first matriarchal government Japan's had in the modern era.

But with this reveal that there was a coup d'etat that resulted in all these powerful officials being locked away in jail - a jail that's contained within an exclusively female region of Tokyo that's futuristic-looking, oddly triangle-shaped and surrounded by a flat landscape of dirt and dust on all sides, no less - I'm starting to think those who were commenting on the "misogynist" portrayal of the Party of Words might be right, and that their rise to power wasn't as democratic as I first thought...

All that said, I'm really enjoying this series for what it is, and I have to agree, this episode was the best so far. As for the whole "Subaru Kimura in blackface" thing, I'll just say that it's unfortunate, hope that he doesn't try anything like that again while this show's airing, and just leave it at that.
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Puniyo



Joined: 08 Oct 2015
Posts: 242
PostPosted: Sat Oct 24, 2020 7:36 am Reply with quote
Takkun4343 wrote:

But with this reveal that there was a coup d'etat that resulted in all these powerful officials being locked away in jail - a jail that's contained within an exclusively female region of Tokyo that's futuristic-looking, oddly triangle-shaped and surrounded by a flat landscape of dirt and dust on all sides, no less - I'm starting to think those who were commenting on the "misogynist" portrayal of the Party of Words might be right, and that their rise to power wasn't as democratic as I first thought...


The franchise is aimed at a female audience, so I don't find this likely. In the other material the characters reiterate a lot that their problem isn't a female-run government, it's what those specific women are doing - the borders and restrictions they've placed (see: break the wall, any of the drama CDs). It's mostly an excuse to explain why the divisions are only comprimised of pretty boys, anyway. We also don't even know most of Chuuoku's motivations yet since the franchise is still working up to revealing that (which might be soon, given that Chuuoku just got their own song), but the girls are actually pretty popular. Also didn't the first episode say it was a coup d'etat? or am I confusing that w my drama cd knowledge...

Anyway... this was a super fun episode! I really love the character interactions and the relationship between MTC, and though I'm the resident Samatoki... enthusiast, man, Rio is precious.
Another anime original song! Though Samatoki going through that whole magical girl transformation to get his mic and then just going "yo. f*ck off" was pretty unintentionally hilarious.

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Does every one of their songs include a police siren?

Now that you mention it....
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GunRabbit



Joined: 24 Oct 2020
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 24, 2020 9:48 am Reply with quote
With the release of the limited edition CD that complimented the official guidebook in September, along with the Summit of Divisions and Femme Fatale songs were actually two drama tracks that focused on the three women of Chuuoku. As far as I'm aware, no one's done a translation of them yet, but from what little I could understand of the Japanese it goes into their backstories and their motives for forming the Party of Words. It's actually quite complicated, and you get the sense that they're not doing it because "men suck hurhur and women are superior". In the first volume of The Dirty Dawg manga, Jakurai actually comments that the Party or Words HAS made accomplishments that the all-male government wouldn't have been able to achieve, although their methods of governing are obviously harmful.

Tl;dr - The drama tracks and manga actually goes far more in depth in regards to Chuuoku and why they sought to take over the government and form a dictatorship, in case you're interested.
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GunRabbit



Joined: 24 Oct 2020
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 24, 2020 10:58 am Reply with quote
Hnmm... I'm not exactly disappointed in the anime, but it's a lot more "filler" than what I expected. It's stayed pretty superficial so far, not really going "deeper" into the characters or lore than what we have so far from the songs, manga, and drama tracks. I should've anticipated that, however, as the anime is more of a promotional for introducing new-comers into the series. In any case, the focus on the team dynamics and relationships is cute, and the songs are nice.

I'm pleasantly surprised - when I heard that the rap battles would be 3D animated, I pictured some RWBY style MMD animation, and feared for the worst. The movements are smooth though, and the transitions between the 2D and 3D style are fluid and effortless.

I have to say, Matenro is my favorite division (although Fling Posse's songs are more my type), but I liked the MTC episode the best so far - while the bank robbery and the confrontation from Hifumi's stalker seemed like irregular events to add excitement to the show, the "territory battles and eradicating drugs" seemed more like an "everyday" thing for MTC and less nonsensical than one might expect. It was nice to see Rio get some acknowledgement, as he's one of the less popular, less developed characters - even I don't care much for him, but I'm sure Rio fans appreciated it.

Ahhh, but Jyuto is my favorite, and there were so many closeups of his pretty green eyes that I lost it! It irks me a little how the anime will make references to the canon (Hifumi's stalker, Ichiro and Samatoki's rivalry, Jyuto's hatred for drugs, Gentaro's lying habit), but how without context, anime viewers won't understand WHY that's the case. For instance, Jyuto has an extreme desire to eradicate drugs, but why? Listen to the drama tracks! Why do Samatoki and Ichiro hate each other? Why do Ramuda and Samatoki know each other? Who's Samatoki's sister, and where is she now? Drama tracks and manga! Not to sound like an "I'm-superior-because-I-read-the-manga-so-I'm-a-true-fan" person, but those who exclusively watch the anime will never receive the full experience of the series.

I'm just afraid that the spread of info across different media forms will deter new fans of the series; there's not one source that gives you all you need to know, and while it provides a nice variety, it's almost a painstaking process at times trying to attach all the pieces of the puzzle and STILL feeling like you're missing something critical.

Obviously, no one needs to KNOW "everything" about Hypmic to be a "true" fan, but as someone who's obsessive about reading all of the material and hearing all of the songs, as to have a deeper understanding of the series and characters as a whole, it's almost an exhausting effort - and I enjoy every second of it - but it might be frustrating for those who are new to Hypmic.

I'm DYING for more cross-division interactions, though! Matenro's cameo in episode 2 psyched me up, and it was nice to see the conversation between Samatoki and Jakurai in episode three (also more Jyuto fanservice). When I found out the drug operation would take place at a casino, I already knew Dice would show up, so that got me pretty pumped. I want to see tactless but cheerful Hifumi and shrewd, cryptic Gentaro have a go at each other, I want to find out the backstory behind Jyuto and Doppo's relationship (they seem to be on good terms with each other), I want to witness Ramuda snapping and Jakurai losing composure and more of the Chuuoku women! Maybe they'll even animate some rap battles as division members inevitably butt heads with each other? Hopefully some new ones and not just War War War, or Battle Battle Battle, or Death Respect? That would be awesome!

Also I'm surprised no one's recommended Scenario Liar yet for songs, that one's a solid S tier for me! Gentaro is one of the better rappers, in my opinion - Saito Souma definitely has a good range and impressive flow! Tigrida is pretty good, too! And Shinjuku Style - that's my favorite of the first round of division songs.

My one other complaint is more of a personal nitpick, but I'm sad that I don't think we'll see any of Bad Ass Temple or Doitsutare Honpo in the anime, at least not in the first season - maybe if Hypmic gets popular enough that there's a second one, they'll come up. I feel like new anime watchers would have a field day with characters like Sasara and Jyushi! Such a shameeee!
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rahzel rose
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 24, 2020 5:19 pm Reply with quote
GunRabbit wrote:
It was nice to see Rio get some acknowledgement, as he's one of the less popular, less developed characters - even I don't care much for him, but I'm sure Rio fans appreciated it.

Agreed! He’s not my favorite, but I still like him and he certainly rounds out MTC well.

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I'm just afraid that the spread of info across different media forms will deter new fans of the series; there's not one source that gives you all you need to know, and while it provides a nice variety, it's almost a painstaking process at times trying to attach all the pieces of the puzzle and STILL feeling like you're missing something critical.

I think the nice thing about hypmic is that there’s something for everyone. I’m pretty much a casual fan that’s here for the music and the lives and the good fan art, but I have friends who are super into it too. I think that’s why I don’t mind that the show is more “filler” than actually following the drama CD plot.

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Also I'm surprised no one's recommended Scenario Liar yet for songs, that one's a solid S tier for me! Gentaro is one of the better rappers, in my opinion - Saito Souma definitely has a good range and impressive flow! Tigrida is pretty good, too!

I love Scenario Liar and Tigrida. Soma and Kent are both excellent! I think those two, Komachan and Subaru are probably the top for me, although I honestly can’t say anyone is BAD.

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My one other complaint is more of a personal nitpick, but I'm sad that I don't think we'll see any of Bad Ass Temple or Doitsutare Honpo in the anime, at least not in the first season - maybe if Hypmic gets popular enough that there's a second one, they'll come up.

Same, although I’m not as familiar with them (again because I’m more of a casual fan). I do lean more towards DT because I love their group song and FACES, but One and Two, and Law is also a bop.
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