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Yttrbio
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Joined: 09 Jun 2011
Posts: 3409
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 5:33 pm Reply with quote
I'm also a bit surprised to find someone who likes Majikoi but is down on Yamato. He does everything I hate typical harem leads for not doing: He's not wishy-washy about what girl he's interested in, he's not passive, and he's not incredibly dense about the feelings of folks around him. Still, the thing that makes the show so watchable is how unapologetic it is about its absurdity, whether the male lead is launching into a dissertation about cultural imperialism in order to grab a peek at a naked girl, or students are battling it out with giant phalli while Norio Wakamoto delivers a lecture on civic engagement.
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Saffire
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Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 1237
Location: Iowa, USA
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 5:49 pm Reply with quote
aereus wrote:
Megiddo wrote:

I think I read that the first four books are setting up the story.

Good luck. I can only hope that's the four on the bottom and not the top.

Sadly for you, I believe it's the first four VOLUMES. Which are split into multiple books. It's actually the bottom EIGHT books on that pile + the one 2nd from top Wink
Actually, those books aren't Horizon at all. :p I've seen that image passed around a lot with regards to the show, but they're actually the same author's previous work, Owari no Chronicle. It's mostly to demonstrate what the author's work tends to look like. Horizon only has 4 volumes totalling 9 books, and book 4B only came out last month. Based on that, I would say whoever said that originally probably did mean actual books rather than the volume headings.

That all probably sounds like a relief, but the Horizon books are generally thicker. The first three volumes (7 books) total almost 6000 pages. There's a long ways to go.
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Spastic Minnow
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Joined: 02 May 2006
Posts: 4263
Location: Gainesville, FL
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:05 pm Reply with quote
CrownKlown wrote:
But regarding your comment, any of these shows could be watched with out a brain, these are not documentaries explaining the laws of physics of the foundation of the roman legal system; take in point your top show, chihayafuru, what exactly to you find so hard to digest on that show that it somehow requires you to sport a PHd. This is not to say I equate chihaya with maji, I do prefer maji, but acknowledge chihya is a beautiful show and can see why people would praise it, just that some of your criticism is undeserved.


You misunderstand the term. "Turning off your brain," is not strictly about intellectual stimulus, it's about being able to ignore all the thoughts you have that tell you a show is bad. Instead you focus on the aspects that you like.

When your brain is "on" you can't shut it up from telling you how bad it is and how you must stop watching it.
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mufurc



Joined: 09 Jun 2003
Posts: 612
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:12 pm Reply with quote
As for Phi-Brain, it doesn't delve into how the characters solve the puzzles because you're supposed to try and solve the puzzles along with them. In its original format (that is, real-time on NHK-E) it's semi-interactive: when there is a puzzle you push a button on your remote controller and a screen comes up with the puzzle, and you can try and solve it.

Re: UN-GO, I've already given up on people criticizing it because the mysteries are weak. Yes, they are - but if someone can't see that UN-GO is not a mystery show and that the mysteries are secondary to something much bigger, they're better off watching another show.
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Megiddo



Joined: 24 Aug 2005
Posts: 8197
Location: IL
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:15 pm Reply with quote
What is that 'something much bigger'?
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blackseer



Joined: 09 Sep 2011
Posts: 94
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:20 pm Reply with quote
mufurc wrote:

Re: UN-GO, I've already given up on people criticizing it because the mysteries are weak. Yes, they are - but if someone can't see that UN-GO is not a mystery show and that the mysteries are secondary to something much bigger, they're better off watching another show.

The problem is: the something bigger is developing very slowly and is not very interesting so far. Even if the main aspect of the series is the social critique, if the episodic mystery, that is the structure they chose to tell the story, is not fun, then it fails as a show. It just feel like wasted potential.
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jjnoahjames



Joined: 23 Feb 2010
Posts: 11
Location: U.S.A.
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 7:35 pm Reply with quote
yeah horizon looked so cool in the previews. the hype was rad. but I've heard so much bad stuff.same with UN-GO but I watched Un-Go. Un-Go seems awesome and I want it to be awesome but it's tough to get through at timse, with so many other amazing cop drama's from Death Note to American T.V. shows like Law and Order SVU, Breaking Bad, or Luther it just seems so week, but the charaters seem so cool
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Lynx Amali





PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 7:54 pm Reply with quote
Horizon isn't bad per say. It's just cramming too much stuff and has serious mood whiplash the likes of which I haven't seen since Zeta Gundam to ZZ Gundam. (Serious at the begining of an episode to light hearted hijinks the next.) I'm enjoying it but I can see why other people wouldn't. But then again, I enjoyed stuff like Gravion, Apocalypse Zero and Mars of Destruction so my taste might be a little...questionable. Add to the fact it's by Studio 7, who are infamous for pacing issues.

@Saffire:
You are correct in those aren't Horizon.

As for P4, I haven't bothered watching it. Been too focused on Guilty Crown which I'm really enjoying. Partially because of the music so......
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PlatinumHawke



Joined: 02 Nov 2006
Posts: 204
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 10:18 pm Reply with quote
SakechanBD wrote:
You raise a good point. The system isn't perfect, because it doesn't really take into account for the fact that a bunch of series started simulcasting late in the US. The ranking system was originally invented under the assumption that all shows would receive a true simulcast-- right from the beginning.


For new (or late debuts) shows I'd have used a sideways arrow, and anything that got pushed down -- but would have maintained it's position -- get the hold icon.

Or not, since it clutters things up. Actually reading the reviews explained why something like Fate/zero had positive comments but a "down" rating. Too much worrying about the quantifying, not enough about the content. =\

Anyway, reviews.

Chihayafuru is the dark horse series of the season, if not the year. I can't say anything but good things about the show. It's filling my josei quota that noitaminA normally delivers on.


I agree pretty resoundly with Bamboo in her thoughts on how Fate/Zero is shaping up. Even with it's cast nearing 20 members, Zero gets most of them into the spotlight. Some shows have difficulty balancing half that number.

Some of the characters haven't had their moments yet, but that's kind of a given with a battle royale trope in effect. Got to thin out the cast a little bit to open up space for the characters in waiting.


As for Future Diary. It's brilliant in "how is this show not self-destructing" kind of way. There were initial comparisons to (what little I saw of) Death Note, but the over-the-topness of both the characters and plot put it in an entertaining league of it's own. I'm surprised it hasn't hit Code Geass levels of popularity as they aren't too far removed from each other.


Will watch Last Exile for as long as Fam is, well Fam. I was worried when in the first few episodes it was made clear that Millia would be in the main cast. But in the span of about two episodes she's pulled together into something other than a complaining aristocrat. And look, returning cast members. Nostalgia bonus.

Though still a bit worried how the show feels like a product of recent trends, despite being very much like the precedessor. Sure it's got the airship battles and politics like the first Last Exile, but it feels at odds with the general cuteness and Famservice.


Most ridiculous set-up for me is still Akikan. Pop cans that turn into girls that magically kick the crap out of other girl-cans to decide what material pop cans are made from? Oh wait, that didn't work out too well compared this seasons pair of weird set-ups with enjoyable execution Ben-to and Phi Brain. Watching the former, time to give the latter a spin based on how well received it's been.
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momogoldfish



Joined: 01 May 2009
Posts: 135
Location: New Zealand
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 10:31 pm Reply with quote
Regarding Un-go, I am guessing overseas people probably aren't aware that there's a whole mystery genre in Japan called something like 'Social Mysteries'. Most Japanese mystery stories before the 1960's were classic styled 'locked room mysteries' with leading writers like Yokomizo Seishi (who created Kindaichi Kousuke, who has a literary grandson by way of Kindaichi Hajime) but then Matsumoto Seicho came in with works like Suna no Utsuwa that were more about exploring the social circumstances surrounding the murder rather than the actual 'trick' used to accomplish them. These social mysteries were pretty big during the 60's and 70's and although the original novels were from about a decade earlier I'm guessing these social mysteries are influential on Un-go. However, at least the social critizue surrounding the murder are presented with a lot more pizazz than these original social mysteries (frankly Suna no Utsuwa was pretty boring IMHO).
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blackseer



Joined: 09 Sep 2011
Posts: 94
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 10:36 pm Reply with quote
PlatinumHawke wrote:

As for Future Diary. It's brilliant in "how is this show not self-destructing" kind of way. There were initial comparisons to (what little I saw of) Death Note, but the over-the-topness of both the characters and plot put it in an entertaining league of it's own. I'm surprised it hasn't hit Code Geass levels of popularity as they aren't too far removed from each other.

I don't see how Code Geass and Mirai Nikki are alike, besides the colors, maybe. Both had a share of influence from Death Note, but in MN the moments of paranoia take over the show. The few moments of light-heartness (like in episode 3 and 6) are done so poorly that you wish that it won't happen again. While CG followed the Gundam structure, but with an over-the-top acting.
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gerbilx



Joined: 19 Jan 2009
Posts: 138
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 12:36 am Reply with quote
Thanks for the detailed, well written column. It's truly an asset to ANN.

Your tone is also quite refreshing, even with shows that you don't like. Unlike most reviewers, you actually come off like you still enjoy anime.
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050795



Joined: 27 Mar 2009
Posts: 230
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 1:00 am Reply with quote
Quote:
I would like someone to address the elephant in the room of “Why is there a world inside the TVs,” but I doubt that will happen anytime soon.


Yeah they don't really explain what it is till late in the game, so I have a feeling it will also be a while before they explain it in the anime. In the game the mystery of the other world is part of why you play it till the end, because you just have to figure out just what the heck it is!
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vinamara



Joined: 30 Nov 2008
Posts: 229
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 6:43 am Reply with quote
I'm trying to get invested in Chihayafuru but I still feel that its lacking something. I guess I have been spoiled badly by Nodame Cantabile which reminds me that Chihayafuru feels faintly similar to it in its presentation. The thing is that the new characters barely register in the show. Chi-chan practically hogs the episode shoving the new characters behind.

And if you ask me Guilty Crown is getting messier by the episode and about why Gai had an IV up his vein:-

What I think is that Gai got those void identifying eyes due to the infection of the virus. Its possible that he might have been vaccinated at an end stage and got this power as a byproduct, which also explains why he needs periodic shots or blood infusions or whatever. And it could mean that he hasn't much time left on mother earth. Whatever it may be I think that virus has to play some role.

Anyhoo, the latest episode was fairly boring and wasn't all that good. For the most part Shu was a pissant and the way he talks only makes me wanna acquaint him with my fist. And I do think the girls of this series are dumb although I have some hopes for that one last girl that's gonna be introduced soon. She definitely has a more mature look to her but we'll see.

On the other hand Un-Go should go up. The little speech that Yuuki delivers at the end in episode 4 should be enough to bump it up above GC. And episode 5 was a definite improvement.
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writerpatrick



Joined: 29 Mar 2006
Posts: 620
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 9:50 am Reply with quote
Zac wrote:
Spastic Minnow wrote:

(Anime smile) This show is better than before
(-_-) This show is just about as good as before
(Anime hyper) This show isn't as good as before
(x_x) This show is dead to me

Using this system you could even consistently use smiley faces for your favorite show if you think it continues to progress nicely and use an apathetic face even if technically rises in rank because ones that had been above it have tanked worse.


Okay, look, the 'smiley faces' you described are literally the exact same thing as the arrows. Up means better than before, Neutral means about the same, Down means not as good, X means dead to me.

This is not that difficult to understand at all, people. Seriously.


The only one I find confusing is the unchanged symbol because it looks too much like a "not" symbol. A straight dash would work better.
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