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review

Kase-san and an Apron GN

This sweet yet relatable yuri series continues as the girls' relationships deepen and come into greater conflict. Rebecca Silverman gets into the good stuff. ― Time marches on, and with it comes new worries. The previous volume of Hiromi Takashima's Kase-san and… yuri series had the girls coping with the idea of being separated after they graduate from high school – Yamada had always planned to follo...
review

Keijo!!!!!!!! Limited Edition BD/DVD

This absurd action comedy about the most fanservice-fueled sport in the world is finally available in a limited edition stuffed with goodies. James Beckett dives into the curvaceous world of Keijo!!!!!!!! ― To determine whether or not to invest time and money in Keijo!!!!!!, you need only to ask yourself if you like: Exceedingly silly and completely over-the-top sports showdowns Animated boobs Animat...
review

My-Otome Complete Series BD/DVD

This sequel to My-HiME isn't as beloved as its predecessor, but it still has plenty of its own charm to offer. Theron Martin has the details. ― My-Otome is the 2005 follow-up to 2004's My-HiME. For most of its run, it appears to be an alternate-world version of My-HiME, where the original cast is transplanted into a new setting but with different lesser roles, but details later in the series' run sug...
review

Bungo Stray Dogs: Dead Apple

The Gifted's supernatural abilities separate from their bodies for a Yokohama battle royale in Bungo Stray Dogs' theatrical debut! Lynzee Loveridge breaks down the highs and lows of this big-screen experience. ― Homeowners insurance in Yokohama must be exorbitant, because it seems like the place is always on the brink of caving in on itself. In the series' last installment, it was killer mind-control...
review

Queen's Quality GN 1

Supernatural shenanigans abound in this renamed continuation of Kyosuke Motomi's QQ Sweeper. Rebecca Silverman sums it up. ― Queen's Quality volume one could easily be called QQ Sweeper volume four – it picks up directly where Kyousuke Motomi's previous series left off. That's certainly not a bad thing for fans of the author, whose other English-language works include Dengeki Daisy and Beast Master, ...
review

Little Hero eBook 2

This isekai story does things a little differently by putting a little girl in the role of the hero. Rebecca Silverman digs into this unique volume. ― Isekai has never been a male demographic-exclusive genre, although most of the titles to be translated into English might make you think so. (Unless, of course, you're old enough to remember Fushigi Yugi and From Far Away.) Wakasa's Little Hero is a ni...
review

Fire Punch GN 1

This stomach-turning, head-spinning, post-apocalyptic revenge saga is not for the faint of heart. Theron Martin finds out if this hot-button adventure manga is worth reading. ― It's hard to find a post-apocalyptic story much darker than this new offering from Viz Media. Anyone interested in checking this first volume out should be aware that the explicit content label is absolutely not an overstateme...
review

Again!! GN 1

The co-creator of Yuri on Ice is back with the tale of a high school kid who gets a supernatural chance to do it all over again - and this time, he's determined to join the cheer club. ― High school occupies a special place in pop culture, both eastern and western. Despite the fact that for many of us it hardly lives up to the hype of “the best days of your life,” those three or four years at childho...
review

Advance Review: Liz and the Blue Bird

The acclaimed director of A Silent Voice is back with an astonishingly gorgeous and surprisingly touching coming-of-age film set in the beautiful and nostalgic world of Sound! Euphonium. ― Sound! Euphonium began in 2013 as a novel focused on the lives of the newest members of a once prestigious high school brass band club and their subsequent fight to restore it to its former glory. Since then, the f...
review

Kiznaiver Blu-Ray

Kiznaiver is a gorgeous and heartfelt science-fiction romp well worth taking, so long as you're willing to bear with a handful of speedbumps along the way. James Beckett takes a look at this series' release on blu-ray with an English dub. ― Studio Trigger officially burst onto the TV anime scene with 2013's popular and controversial hit, Kill la Kill. Over the past half-decade, Trigger has made a nam...
review

Sword Gai: The Animation

Netflix's newest sword-driven gorefest doesn't quite deliver what its premise promises. Theron Martin details what went wrong. ― Sword Gai the Animation is the latest Netflix Original ONA series. It's based on a manga by Toshiki Inoue, a long-time anime script writer whose credits include the likes of Dr. Slump, Dragon Ball, Galaxy Angel, and Ushio & Tora; he also wrote this anime version of his mang...
review

Yume Nikki - I Am Not in Your Dream Novel

The deeply unsettling cult smash PC game is adapted as a chilling, brain-twisting light novel - Rebecca Silverman may never dream the same again. ― Dreams are among the most difficult stories to relate. To the dreamer, they seem utterly fascinating and replete with important symbols and information. To their unfortunate audience, they often feel like boring nonsense tales, to be suffered through with...
review

Kenka Bancho Otome: Love's Battle Royale GN 1

Roundhouse kick your way to romance with this otome game adaptation about a girl disguised as a boy fighting her own love interests! Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― Kenka Bancho Otome: Love's Battle Royale is the manga adaptation of the otome game of the same name, and some of you may already be familiar with it from its 2017 anime version. As you might guess, the story is a reverse harem where ...
review

Laid-Back Camp GN 1

With its slow pace and surprisingly layered characters, Laid-Back Camp makes off-season camping look fun. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― Like many people who live in areas popular with tourists, Rin has it all figured out: she enjoys camping, but she prefers to do so in the off season. That's when she's more likely to be able to have the campgrounds to herself to truly enjoy views of Mount Fuji...
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REVIEW: Big Fish & Begonia

This epic fantasy film twelve years in the making combines the talents of Chinese artists and Studio Mir into an unforgettable experience. Michelle Liu explores what this film meant to Chinese audiences and offers to anime fans as well. ― According to director Liang Xuan, the image of a fish rising to the sky first came to him in a dream. That's a good place to start when processing the film that ima...
review

Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress BD/DVD

This hyperviolent zombie-hunting adventure from Studio Wit might bear a striking resemblance to Attack on Titan, but it also offers plenty of entertainment on its own merits. James Beckett has the details. ― The comparisons between Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress and Attack on Titan were inveitable from the get-go, and not just because both projects were animated by Studio Wit and spearheaded by direct...
review

Yuri!!! on ICE Limited Edition BD+DVD

The biggest hit anime of 2016 finally comes to blu-ray! Jacob Chapman breaks down the limited edition release and what makes this story of love on ice so enduring. ― "Don't stop us now! The moment of truth! We were born to make history!" Back before Yuri!!! on Ice aired, this bold declaration in its opening theme was subject to an understandable degree of snickering. The song was adorably catchy, and...
review

Children of the Whales

While there's beauty and intrigue to be found in its presentation, this ambitious fantasy series on Netflix may be less than the sum of its parts. Theron Martin investigates. ― This 12-episode adaptation of Abi Umeda's source manga is advertised as a Netflix Original Series, even though it actually aired in Japan during the Fall 2017 season. Regardless of technicalities, Netflix has finally delivered...
review

Dragon Half [Omnibus] GN 1

This classic fantasy comedy series from 1989 is finally available in English for the first time, but have its humor and artwork aged gracefully? Rebecca Silverman finds out. ― Anime fans of a certain age will remember the 2000 release of the two-episode Dragon Half anime even if they didn't find it particularly funny, because it marks one of the most bizarre stories many of us had experienced at the ...
review

Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash Novel 5

Grimgar's fifth novel introduces a new setting, but the most of the important action takes place inside Haruhiro's head. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― Although it may not be strictly true, this feels like the first volume of Ao Jyumonji's Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash where the entire story isn't overshadowed by death. There's grave peril to be sure, and the threat of death looms ever-present, bu...
review

Sanrio Boys—Episodes 1-12 Streaming

Despite a strong first half, Sanrio Boys falls prey to product placement and plot cliches in its second. Rebecca Silverman weighs the pros and cons of this rather commercial comedy. ― Sanrio Boys, the latest marketing scheme from the seemingly endless Sanrio company of mascot characters, at first seemed all set to defy expectations. Despite the obvious product placement, the story's first half revolv...
review

91 Days Complete Series BD/DVD

This period drama about revenge and betrayal in the mob pays thoughtful tribute to its various genre influences. Rebecca Silverman discusses this series' unusual ambitions. ― Rarely has 1928 America been so well captured in anime as it is in the gangster drama 91 Days. Given that history in fiction is so often romanticized, that's saying a lot – you only have to compare the basics of this show with G...
review

New Game! Season 1 BD/DVD

New Game! offers an occasionally awkward but largely charming mix of game dev office drama and slice of life shenanigans. Nick Creamer has the details. ― The animation studio Dogakobo have built a sturdy reputation over the years predicated on two central qualities: their regularly top-shelf character animation, and their clear preference for slice of life shows, and warm comedies in general. From Yu...
review

A.I.C.O. -Incarnation-

This sci fi action thriller on Netflix is conceptually ambitious, but is it entertaining? Theron Martin finds out if Studio Bones' latest is worth watching. ― This 12-episode ONA series is another of Netflix's original productions, this time in conjunction with Studio Bones. Like B: The Beginning, it was released in its entirety on Netflix exclusively, with subtitles and dubs in multiple languages. B...
review

All Out!! BD/DVD Part 1

If you're looking for muscular guys tackling each other in the dirt, All Out more than has you covered, but don't expect to learn a lot about rugby. Rebecca Silverman weighs in on this meaty show. ― If there's one thing All Out does well, it's showcase a variety of male body types. There's a wonderful lack of uniformity to the way the show's nearly all-male cast is drawn: different heights, different...
review

Mermaid Boys GN 1

The Little Mermaid gets a makeover in this fun romantic comedy about a merman prince who falls in love with a human girl. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― Hans Christian Andersen's literary fairy tale “The Little Mermaid” has to an extent been eclipsed by its 1989 Walt Disney counterpart, but the base tale remains the same: young mermaid falls in love at first sight with a human prince, trades he...
game review

REVIEW: Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet

This run-and-gun RPG for the PS4 allows SAO fans to interact with all their favorite characters in a brand-new story. But is it fun to play? Branden Johnson finds out. ― Unpopular opinion time: my least favorite arc in Sword Art Online was Gun Gale Online. Not that it was bad, just that it felt lacking compared to the two storylines that preceded it. So my expectations going into Sword Art Online: Fa...
review

Dragon Ball Super Part Two Blu-ray

The Resurrection F arc delivers a flurry of fights and a few new transformations, but is the story actually memorable underneath the nostalgia factor? Sam Leach weighs in. ― With the Japanese broadcast of Dragon Ball Super nearing its finale, there's some new perspective to be had from revisiting its early days. I remember when these initial movie remake arcs were airing, and it felt like we'd never ...
review

Fate/Grand Order First Order Blu-Ray

Is this curious one-off story in the Fate canon worth your time? Gabriella Ekens weighs the pros and cons of this partial mobile game adaptation. ― If you're a fan of the Fate franchise, and maybe even if you aren't, you've probably heard of Fate/Grand Order. This mobile game is a recent installment in fate canon has been doing quite well for itself in both Japan and abroad, so it's no wonder that th...
game review

Ni no Kuni II:Revenant Kingdom

It took 8 years for a Ni no Kuni sequel to finally surface, and now that it's here, there's both good news and bad for this lavish Studio Ghibli-esque action RPG. ― Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch was a bit too traditional for me. As a lover of RPGs and the films of Hayao Miyazaki, I figured it would be right up my alley. An RPG that looks and sounds like a real Studio Ghibli film is basically a...
review

Robot Carnival Blu-ray

The classic 1987 anthology film finally comes to blu-ray, with a staggering amount of extras for diehard fans. Daryl Surat has the details. ― Many classic anime fans refer to a “golden age” of Japanese animation that roughly coincided with the peak of Japan's bubble economy from the 1980s through early 1990s, and perhaps no single title sums up that ideal more succinctly than 1987's Robot Carnival. E...
review

Love Live! Sunshine!! Season One BD/DVD

Love Live Sunshine maintains the goofy appeal of its predecessor while simultaneously struggling to escape its shadow. Nick Creamer finds out how this next generation of idols stacks up to the original hit-makers. ― How do you follow up a megahit? After the first season of Love Live turned into a sales juggernaut, Sunrise initially followed it with a second season that was essentially “Love Live, but...
review

Space Patrol Luluco BD/DVD

This uneven but often charming journey into first love and hot-blooded justice has finally arrived on blu-ray! Nick Creamer has the details on Imaishi's bite-sized creation. ― Hiroyuki Imaishi's name is almost synonymous with the Studio Trigger brand. After providing dynamic key animation and highlights like FLCL's manga sequences early in his career, he became the flagship director for Gainax's last...
review

Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? Sword Oratoria Novel 5

As the first novel in this spinoff series to go beyond the anime adaptation, this is recommended reading for transitioning between the two versions. Theron Martin explores this new content. ― With volume 5, the Sword Oratoria novel series mostly passes beyond the end of its anime adaptation, picking up as Loki Familia is returning to the surface from the climactic events of the anime's final episode;...
game review

GAME REVIEW: Attack on Titan 2

This sequel to the first action game in the franchise from KOEI-TECMO and Omega Force makes significant improvements on its predecessor, but is it worth a purchase? Heidi Kemps has the answers. ― Omega Force's record with anime and manga adaptations is a bit spotty. We've had disappointments like Fist of the North Star: Ken's Rage and Berserk and the Band of the Hawk, but we've also had some real win...
review

REVIEW: Free! -Take Your Marks-

After almost four years adrift on the tides, the boys of eternal summer are back with new adventures in advance of Free! season three this summer. Jacob Chapman dives into this theatrical continuation. ― You know that sequence of heartwarming, lightly comedic images that flashed by during the credits of Free! Eternal Summer's final episode? We saw Makoto and Haruka studying together in college, Nagis...
review

B: The Beginning

Netflix's new action-packed series boasts an ambitious combo of crime procedural and supernatural epic, but can it combine those elements into a cohesive story? Theron Martin finds out. ― B: The Beginning is a collaboration between Netflix and Production I.G. that was originally advertised in early 2016 as "Perfect Bones". This name change is definitely for the best, since the final version of the st...
review

Clockwork Planet Novel 1

Clockwork Planet's reputation may have taken a hit after its sub-par anime adaptation, but this first novel proves that the story still has promise. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― Falling somewhere between steampunk and straight science fiction, Clockwork Planet's inaugural novel introduces a quartet of not-quite-heroes who are a blend of tropes and fun. Co-written by the author of No Game, No ...
review

Ace Attorney BD/DVD Part 1

Ace Attorney offers a fun story and characters, but its lack of ambition holds it back from being as good as fans of the game might have hoped. Rebecca Silverman explores what went wrong. ― Fiction is under no obligation to be faithful to real life. That's why it's “fiction,” right? In the case of Ace Attorney, that's a good thing to remember, because even if you've only ever seen two episodes of Law...
review

Captain Harlock: Dimensional Voyage GNs 1-3

This retelling of Leiji Matsumoto's 1978 series largely works, even if it lacks some of the original manga's grandeur. Rebecca Silverman digs into this epic space opera. ― It's a fair question to debate which of Leiji Matsumoto's space-faring characters is the most renowned. Is it Emeraldas? Maetel? Or is it Harlock, pirate captain of the space vessel Arcadia? Whatever your preference, Harlock is the...
review

A Strange and Mystifying Story GN 2

Too much telling and not enough showing brings down this boys' love romance, but Setsu's past may be worth sticking things out. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― The second volume of Tsuta Suzuki's A Strange and Mystifying Story, previously published by Juné and now re-released by Viz's SuBLime imprint, does much more to build on Setsu's past than on the main couple's relationship. This may well t...
review

Voltron: Legendary Defender season 5

Netflix's smash hit action series returns with more character drama and mysterious plot threads; but where's the robot action? Mike Toole weighs the ups and downs of this season's balance. ― What is a season, anyway? It used to be a pretty solid 26 episodes, or at least 20. Then fancy words like cour started getting thrown around, premium TV channels started offering eight- and ten-episode seasons th...
review

Kizumonogatari III: Reiketsu Blu-ray

The Kizumonogatari trilogy comes to an end, as Araragi finally cements his fate for the many Monogatari stories to follow. Nick Creamer breaks down this final film's highs and lows on the special edition blu-ray. ― We generally have certain expectations regarding endings. We expect, if not happiness, at least some sense of finality. Some kind of closure to a story's dramatic journey. We have followed...
review

Berserk (2016) BD/DVD

This stylistically divisive continuation of Kentaro Miura's fantasy series has finally arrived on blu-ray. Theron Martin finds out if this is still a worthwhile way to experience the classic manga's story. ― The 2016 version of the Berserk TV series is a direct sequel to the trio of Berserk: The Golden Age Arc movies released in from 2012 to 2014. Knowledge of those movies is not strictly necessary, ...
review

Umineko When They Cry Episode 7: Requiem of the Golden Witch Volume 1

At long last Umineko is truly digging into its mystery roots, and Ryukishi07 is now committed to showing us where we strayed from the path earlier in the story. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― The scene begins at Beatrice's funeral. That's not really a surprise – the previous arc of Ryukishi07's mystery series Umineko: When They Cry had Battler running his own game after the loss of the Golden W...
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Tales of Zestiria the X Season 1 Limited Edition BD/DVD

Despite two episodes of promotion for a different Tales game, the first season of this RPG fantasy is an enjoyable journey through gorgeous landscapes. Rebecca Silverman explores its ups and downs. ― Tales of Zestiria isn't the first game in the long-running “Tales” franchise to be adapted into an anime series, but it is the sole title to have “the X” appended to its name. That's because that “x,” wh...
review

I Hear the Sunspot: Theory of Happiness GN

This follow-up to Yuki Fumino's understated BL romance is a bit heavier on the angst but still worth the read. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― Yuki Fumino's I Hear the Sunspot stand-alone graphic novel is one of the sweetest love stories to be translated into English, BL or otherwise. That sets the bar very high for its sequel volume, I Hear the Sunspot: Theory of Happiness, and while it doesn't...
review

Giant Spider & Me - A Post-Apocalyptic Tale GN 1

Giant spiders can be cute too in this adorable post-apocalyptic slice-of-life story about a girl and her unusual new pet. Rebecca Silverman investigates. ― Apparently “giant spider monsters” is the new big thing in creepy-cute manga creations. Kikori Morino's Giant Spider & Me - A Post-Apocalyptic Tale is the second title to come out in English featuring an eight-legged, multi-eyed protagonist, altho...
review

Terraformars BD+DVD

These space warriors must harness insect-based superpowers to beat back a cockroach-man infestation on Mars in this troubled action manga adaptation. Theron Martin has the details. ― Based on a manga by Yu Sasuga and Kenichi Tachibana, this 2014 series is essentially a classic alien bug hunt. There are some twists on the old formula: the “bugs” have become humanoid, mankind is partly responsible for ...
review

My-HiME Complete Series BD/DVD

This cult favorite magical girl series of the early 2000s has finally come to blu-ray for the first time. Theron Martin finds out how this influential anime holds up over a decade later. ― Madoka Magica may have set the standard for dark and tangled magical girl series, but it was hardly the first of its kind. One of its most successful predecessors was this series from 2004, which was popular enough...
review

My Hero Academia GN 11

This standout volume offers MHA's peak in action and drama so far. Nick Creamer digs in. ― My Hero Academia opened with Deku's perspective, offering us the beaming optimism of a boy who loves superheroes in a world where superheroes actually exist. His viewpoint gave us a gentle introduction to this world, and also a fairly myopic one, where Midoriya's own attempts to become a hero were the most impo...
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Servamp Season One Limited Edition BD/DVD

Despite its myriad tone problems, this supernatural action series about contracts with vampires manages to convey some meaty and memorable moments. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― Based on Strike Tanaka's manga of the same name, Servamp (a portmanteau of “servant” and “vampire”) isn't sure if it wants to be a comedy or a serious supernatural story. That's less of an issue for the source manga, b...
review

REVIEW: Maquia - When the Promised Flower Blooms

The directorial debut of renowned anime screenwriter Mari Okada is finally out in theaters in Japan. Kim Morrissy finds out if this highly anticipated fantasy film lives up to the hype. ― I cried multiple times watching this film. I was expecting Maquia to be a tearjerker—it's a story about an immortal girl who forms an attachment to a mortal boy. It's an inherently touching premise; the idea that sh...
review

Tales of Wedding Rings GN 1

Satou gets more than he bargained for when he follows his childhood friend home in this fantasy romance by the author of Dusk Maiden of Amnesia. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― No, this is not a manga spin-off of one of the numerous “Tales of” video games. Even creator Maybe is a little embarrassed about how similar to that franchise his manga's title is, but he assures us that it's merely a sim...
review

Thunderbolt Fantasy: The Sword of Life and Death

In advance of a second season, Gen Urobuchi and the master puppeteers at PiLi have delivered a movie recounting the villainous origins of the Screaming Phoenix Killer. Nick Creamer finds out if this series has lost any magic in film form. ― It was a great surprise to learn that Gen Urobuchi, star writer of hits like Madoka Magica and Fate/Zero, would be working on a collaborative series of Taiwanese ...
review

Revolutionary Girl Utena Blu-Ray 3

The final arc in the Utena saga has arrived on blu-ray, alongside the opulent Adolescence of Utena film. Rebecca Silverman looks back on how this classic concluded. ― With this final arc of the Revolutionary Girl Utena narrative, the story throws all subtlety out the window. That's not strictly a negative in terms of getting the most out of everything the series has built up, because when the visuals...
review

REVIEW: Fullmetal Alchemist (live-action movie)

This beloved 2000s megahit is the newest to get a live-action update to the big screen, now available on Netflix after its theatrical run in Japan. Theron Martin finds out if this movie can live up to fans' expectations. ― Fullmetal Alchemist was one of the most popular and successful anime/manga franchises of the 2000s, so the only surprise surrounding this live-action adaptation might be that it di...
review

Silver Spoon GN 1

Hiromu Arakawa's pastoral drama about the highs and lows of farm living at an agricultural college is a far cry from Fullmetal Alchemist, but just as rewarding. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― Hiromu Arakawa's agricultural coming of age tale's anime adaptation reached English-speakers long before now, which makes it feel like a real treat to finally get the chance to read the manga. Based roughl...
review

Taboo Tattoo BD+DVD

This attempt at a gritty action spectacle falls prey to confusing storytelling and baffling editing. Theron Martin examines what went wrong. ― In the Summer 2016 Preview Guide, I gave the first episode of this manga adaptation a middling score, saying that it isn't without potential. Rarely have I looked back at a review and been more perplexed at what I wrote, as on a second view that first episode ...
review

Ao Oni Novel

This adaptation makes great use of its difficult source material to tell a trapped-in-a-game/escape room story worth digging into. Rebecca Silverman explains why. ― If you've played the original game of Ao Oni (“blue demon”) or watched the series of anime shorts, Kenji Kuroda's novelization may come as a surprise. That's not a bad thing, though – Kuroda's reimagining of the source material not only c...
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Takane & Hana GN 1

This manga's take on age gap romance is slightly more self-aware than its peers, delivering an interesting and complex premise. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― At first glance, Takane & Hana looks like any one of a number of vaguely problematic shoujo romances. It features a sixteen-year-old heroine and a twenty-six-year-old hero, an overbearing romantic lead, and a host of power dynamic issues....
review

Fate/Apocrypha (Episodes 13-25)

Fate/Apocrypha's second half rolls to an exhilarating conclusion on Netflix. Kim Morrissy sums up the series' highs and lows as a Fate installment. ― It's unfortunate that the international Netflix release of Fate/Apocrypha was split into two parts. After months of waiting between the first and second cours, the second part of Fate/Apocrypha picks up right where the first part left off, sparing no ti...
review

Myriad Colors Phantom World BD+DVD

While far from the pinnacle of Kyoto Animation's efforts, Phantom World is a fun series that combines fantasy, action, and comedy into an enjoyable ride. Nick Creamer has the details. ― Even from its initial advertising, it was clear that Myriad Colors Phantom World would fall a little outside Kyoto Animation's general slice-of-life/character drama wheelhouse. From its garish color scheme to its loud...
review

Disastrous Life of Saiki K. Season 1 DVD/BD

This irreverent and creative comedy will be a treat for fans of psychic-power-based absurdity. Rebecca Silverman breaks down what she loves about Saiki K's disastrous life. ― Poor Saiki. Just because he's got amazing, massive, psychic powers, he's forced to live a life much less quiet and based around consuming desserts than he wants. From the time he was born, Kusuo Saiki has been extraordinary – te...
review

MaMaMa - Magical Director Mako-chan's Magical Guidance GN

Monster Musume's creator Okayado delivers again on fanservice with a fun plot, even if MaMaMa isn't as polished as his later work. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― At least you know what you're getting into with MaMaMa: Seven Seas' tagline for the series, displayed in large print on the back of the volume, is “Bibbity Bobbity Boobs.” That's actually kind of clever (or at least made me chuckle), a...
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Macross Delta: Gekijō no Walkūre

This Macross Delta compilation film explodes with exhilarating new perspective in its second half, but newcomers are bound to be confused. Kim Morrissy finds out whether this movie is worth checking out for prior fans. ― Like all Macross properties, Macross Delta occupies an awkward position in the West. The Macross Delta TV series never got a release in English-speaking regions, and there are no pro...
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JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Part 3 GNs 4-5

JoJo and the gang finally make it to Egypt after a series of wild fights against other Stand users. Rebecca Silverman sees how these battles hold up in the JoJos canon. ― It's sometimes easy to forget that JoJo's Bizarre Adventure is a shounen manga rather than a seinen one – it's so extreme in so many ways that it feels like a more comfortable fit for an older demographic, at least in terms of what ...
review

Unmagical Girl GN 1

This goofy parody of PreCure-style heroines make the prospect of living with a magical girl seem daunting. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― You love your favorite PreCures and Sailor Guardians, but how well would they fare imported into our world wholesale? That's what the unfortunate Mayuri Tanahashi is about to find out when she accidentally summons Pretty Angel NirBrave from her late father's ...
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REVIEW: Mazinger Z: Infinity

Mike Toole finds out if the CG theatrical debut of Go Nagai's iconic robot adventure holds up to Mazinger fan nostalgia. ― Some 50 years after his professional debut, 2018 is the year of Go Nagai. Netflix's Devilman Crybaby is an early favorite for anime series of the year, and while we await the upcoming Cutie Honey Universe, we've got an all-new, flashy, and action-packed movie featuring Nagai's cr...
review

Perfect Blue: Complete Metamorphosis Novel

The source novel for Satoshi Kon's film is finally available in English, and while it definitely isn't the same as the movie, it's a strong horror story on its own merits. Rebecca Silverman digs in. ― Perfect Blue is best known as the film by the late, great Satoshi Kon, but years before that it was a horror novel by Yoshikazu Takeuchi. Written in 1991, Takeuchi's novel is now available in English fo...
review

Genocidal Organ

Genocidal Organ offers a compelling mix of thrilling action and political commentary, sending the Project Itoh trilogy out on its best foot. Nick Creamer has the details. ― I was frankly a little worried when I received this bare-bones release of Genocidal Organ. I gave the first Project Itoh film a so-so rating and utterly seared the second. After two lousy-to-bad productions, could Project Itoh fin...
review

Blue Exorcist: Kyoto Saga Volume 1 Blu-ray

Rin and his friends are back after six years to defend the world from demonic destruction. James Beckett sees how this continuation of the manga story compares to the first series' anime-original conclusion. ― Anyone who followed the original anime adaptation of Kazue Kato's Blue Exorcist manga might be somewhat confused to see a sequel pop up six years after the fact, since the 2011 series ran Rin O...
review

Kakegurui — Episodes 1-12 streaming

After half a year in limbo, this sexy melodrama about the compulsive gambling underworld of an elite academy has finally landed on Netflix! Theron Martin finds out if it was worth the wait. ― The thrill of risk and the ecstasy of a big victory make gambling quite a sexy endeavor, while the devastation of a big loss and the destructive addiction it can foster simultaneously make it very ugly. That dic...
review

Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle GN 1

This prequel delivers an interesting origin story for prior fans and an imaginative (yet harsh) cyborg adventure for new readers. Theron Martin has the details. ― Volume 1 of Battle Angel Alita: Last Order revealed a past for Alita that cast her as a young girl clinging to life on a settled Mars. This origin was alluded to a few times later in that series but never explored in further detail; we only...
review

Walking My Second Path in Life Novel 1

A neglected princess takes matters into her own hands in J-Novel Club's first female-led light novel. Rebecca Silverman digs in. ― Otaku de Neet's Walking my Second Path in Life is very reminiscent of Tamora Pierce's beloved young adult fantasy series Song of the Lioness - like Pierce's heroine Alanna, this series stars a young woman who wants to break into the male-dominated field of knighthood. But...
review

Gosick: The Complete Series Part Two BD+DVD

Gosick concludes with some outlandish twists and alternate-history inaccuracies, but its propulsive plot and striking imagery keeps the ride engaging. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― If historical accuracy is important to you, the second half of the otherwise good Gosick may annoy you unduly. This is largely because the show decides to move the timeline of WWII up for its own reasons, starting t...
review

Sword Art Online the Movie: Ordinal Scale Limited Edition Blu-ray

The hit anime's original theatrical debut finally comes to Blu-ray along with tons of bonus goodies. Theron Martin weighs the pros and cons of this film and its special edition package. ― Unlike most previous SAO anime, the story for Ordinal Scale was original material written specifically for the movie, retrofitted into the timeline between the end of Mother's Rosario and the beginning of the Aliciz...
review

Danganronpa 3: The End of Hope's Peak High School - Future Arc BD+DVD

James Beckett runs down the highs and lows in this conclusive half of the final part in the Hope's Peak Academy saga. ― There are a couple of potentially confusing aspects of this series that should be addressed right off the bat: Danganronpa 3: The End of Hope's Peak High School is the final part in the trilogy (plus side materials) that forms Danganronpa's primary story arc. While Danganronpa 1 was...
review

Danganronpa 3: The End of Hope's Peak High School - Despair Arc BD+DVD

James Beckett runs down the highs and lows in this prequel half of the final part in the Hope's Peak Academy saga. ― There are a couple of potentially confusing aspects of this series that should be addressed right off the bat: Danganronpa 3: The End of Hope's Peak High School is the final part in the trilogy (plus side materials) that forms Danganronpa's primary story arc. While Danganronpa 1 was ad...
review

Gintama (Live-Action)

This shonen manga hit's first foray into live-action is both fun and rewarding for fans of the silver-haired samurai. Amy McNulty has our report from the movie's US theatrical run. ― Although this is the third time this story arc has been adapted (and the second time it's been adapted as a feature film), this version is different enough to warrant a watch from even the most Benizakura-weary Gintama f...
game review

REVIEW: Dragon Ball FighterZ

Dustin Bailey has the full rundown on the most hotly anticipated DBZ fighting game of all time. Find out if FighterZ lives up to all the hype! ― Dragon Ball FighterZ isn't just a good game for fans of Dragon Ball—it's a great game period, a best-in-class fighter that looks great and is fun to play at any level. That it's crafted with loving reverence to one of the most popular anime on the planet is ...
review

Oh, My Sweet Alien! GN

A salaryman and an extraterrestrial try to make their unusual marriage work in this short but sweet omnibus. Rebecca Silverman explains what makes this off-beat romantic comedy so charming. ― There are plenty of stories about people who claim to have been abducted by aliens, but how many of them end with the abductee proposing to his captor? That's Nobuo's tale – a few years ago, he was taken aboard ...
review

My Monster Secret GN 8

My Monster Secret’s eighth volume leans heavily on the series’ ensemble cast to mixed results. Nick Creamer has the details. ― My Monster Secret has worked hard to build up its cast roster over the last few volumes. Building on the initial love triangle of Asahi, Shiragami, and Aizawa, the manga has since introduced over half a dozen secondary leads, from the deadpan Rin Kiryuin to the wildcard Akane...
review

ReLIFE Limited Edition BD+DVD

This high school drama sports a uniquely engaging premise and lovable characters, but poor production values and hit-or-miss writing hold it back from reaching great heights. Nick Creamer has the details. ― The allure of a second chance at life has inspired stories throughout history. We all have regrets, and though growing up requires learning from mistakes, it can often feel like we didn't need to ...
review

The Violet Knight eBook 2

With its unique political intrigue and female protagonist, Violet Knight continues to be one of the darkest and more interesting isekai series. Rebecca Silverman digs in to this unique light novel series. ― The second novel in Yohna's isekai fantasy series The Violet Knight appears to have gotten to the story where the author wants it – fully moving towards the consequences of heroine Yuki's father h...
review

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Crystal: Season III Limited Edition BD+DVD

Sailor Moon Crystal Part III is an improvement over the previous seasons with the addition of Sailors Uranus and Neptune. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― The third season of Sailor Moon Crystal brings a few changes to the table even as it embarks on the difficult task of retelling a fan-favorite storyline from the classic series. Among the most noticeable shifts is the art – falling somewhere be...
review

Made in Abyss GN 1

Whether you're already a fan of the anime version or not, Made in Abyss' manga is a journey worth undertaking. Rebecca Silverman dives into this fantasy manga's dark and fascinating world. ― At this point, the anime adaptation of Akihito Tsukushi's fantasy manga is better known to English-speakers, since its release predates that of the source manga. For the curious, this first volume covers the anim...
review

Kemono Friends: Welcome to Japari Park! GN

This manga spinoff of the surprise hit franchise brings some great art to the table but falls short on story. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― The surprise hit anime of last year, Kemono Friends, is only one portion of a multimedia franchise – there are games, apps, and a variety of other bits and bobs to accompany the anime. Fly's two-volume manga Welcome to Japari Park, collected into a single ...
review

Mobile Suit Gundam Wing Collector's Ultra Edition Blu-Ray

The most popular Gundam series in the Western hemisphere finally comes to Blu-ray in this extravagant set filled with bonus goodies. But does the show still hold up 20 years later? Lauren Orsini finds out. ― Gundam Wing was one of the first anime I ever saw, and I'm not alone. When the show first aired on Cartoon Network's Toonami in 2000, it created a wave of brand new-anime fans who are now in thei...
review

Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters

The combined forces of Gen Urobuchi, Polygon Pictures and Netflix have a brand-new animated Godzilla movie for you! Well, the first half of one, anyway. Callum May straps in. ― If this is your first time experiencing Godzilla, turn back now. This is not a film for the uninitiated. Whilst other recent attempts to reboot the series, such as the American Godzilla in 2014 and the most recent Godzilla: Re...
review

REVIEW: DEVILMAN crybaby—Episodes 1-10 Streaming

This insanely salacious reboot of the Go Nagai classic brings Masaaki Yuasa's wild fantasies to life like nothing else. Mike Toole details how Crybaby holds up for both old fans and new. ― I met Masaaki Yuasa at Anime Expo a few years back. When he was first announced as the director of Devilman Crybaby, I remembered seeing him speak effusively of loving mainstream anime, prizing his work on Crayon S...
review

Orange Limited Edition BD/DVD

This teen melodrama takes a surprisingly mature look at clinical depression and how it affects the lives of loved ones. Theron Martin explores the series' highs and lows. ― How do you save a person who's wallowing in depression but won't let anyone know about it, especially without making it obvious that you're trying to do so? That question lies at the heart of this adaptation of Ichigo Takano's man...
review

REVIEW: Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Reflection

The first original theatrical film in the Nanoha franchise reaches for the stars, but steps out on the wrong foot. Kim Morrissy has the details on this movie straight from Japan. ― Before I dive into this review, I should give a bit of context about this movie and where it fits into the Nanoha timeline. Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Reflection is the third Nanoha film, but it's the first to feature an ...
review

Kitaro: The Great Tanuki War GN

As both the least episodic and the most intense of Kitaro's adventures so far, this piece of manga history leaves a strong impression. Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― Most of us are familiar with the Japanese monsters known as tanuki, and to a lesser degree their real-life animal counterpart, as the friendly raccoon dogs who shapeshift and play tricks, or maybe as the statues with giant testicle...
review

The Saga of Tanya the Evil Novel 1

This highly technical and thoroughly detailed first volume is far less light and action-packed than its anime adaptation might suggest. Theron Martin examines how this novel expands on Tanya's story. ― Saga of Tanya the Evil started off as a webnovel on the Japanese site Arcadia before being acquired and published by Enterbrain. A 12-episode anime adaptation aired one year ago, and a follow-up movie ...
review

My Boyfriend in Orange GN 1

Despite its heroine's personal issues, My Boyfriend in Orange is an interesting romance where the love interest has a good reason to keep saving the day: it's all part of being a fireman! Rebecca Silverman has the details. ― Manga about firefighters is its own unique subgenre, and Kodansha's digital release of My Boyfriend in Orange marks the third such story to be translated into English. It's also ...

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