— Archives —
Text-only Compact View
Text-only List View
Text-only Grid View
List View with Images
Grid View with Images
"While the show's vaunted animation appeal doesn't suffer from the changeup this week, the story does sag from the impromptu cast expansion."
"Episode 8 illustrates that the Matsunos are versatile characters who can be thrown into any situation with hilarious results."
"Just as it shares Watchmen's eye toward political history, Concrete Revolutio is also all about interrogating "classic" superheroes, in this case from Showa-period anime."
"This is a really monumental episode because the beat-down that Zoro delivers on Pica is jaw-dropping."
Anime conventions are bigger than ever, with the largest attracting nearly 100,000 people in 2015. How'd they get that way? ― Brandon asks: I've been able to attend a few conventions, spend way too much at some, and meet new and old friends at others. However, when I look at the conventions and the news you all cover from events like Sakura-Con or Anime Expo, I wonder “What made these specific conve...
Shape-shifting dragons, love charms, talking swords, and sentient trading cards abound in this week's Shelf Life, featuring this week's releases and full-length reviews of Familiar of Zero and Wixoss! Plus: a new reviewer appears! ― After spending more than a few Saturday mornings looking up prices for the new release section of this column, I've found that I can usually guess which shows will be ch...
"Using this season to explore the dynamics between the newcomers broadens the scope of the show."
"For a series with a group of teenage protagonists, Comet Lucifer dedicated a surprising amount of time to its older characters this week."
The shortest arc of Sword Art Online II comes to bluray, and Theron Martin decides if it's worth the hefty price tag. ― At a mere three episodes the Calibur arc is by far the shortest of SAO's five TV series arcs. It is also the weakest in a narrative sense, as its stakes are the lowest and its motivations the most trivial of any of the story arcs. However, Calibur does have one critical factor going...
"This is another world-building and character-development episode that feels very much like a “break” from the real action of the show."
"Once again an episode of The Asterisk War takes the focus away from its main female character in lieu of other female characters."
"After a couple of meh weeks on Attack on Titan: Junior High, we get a silly-scary episode with Halloween vibes totally different than anything we've seen so far."
"This was a narrative bridge to finally take our heroes away from the battle against Lucal Wesker and toward their intended confrontation against Crowley."
"This episode proves that Young Black Jack has really studied this era's history."
"This episode ostensibly features a battle between four Kings, and yet the best scene is actually a sharp-tongued dialog exchange which happens in the battle's wake."
"This appears to be the finale of the Sword Eater storyline, and it does feel a bit anti-climactic."
"Some nice banter and character beats, solid reflections on the central characters' overall journeys, and a few silly faces throughout."
"Everything in the Ushio & Tora universe is imbued with meaning, and you never know what will be the key to the next victory."
"I've been clamoring for a look at the big picture for several weeks now, and this is the closest Heavy Object has come to delivering that wider perspective."
Funimation has said they only license shows they think are worth dubbing - so what's up with the sub-only releases of OniAi and Buddy Complex? ― Steven asks: Until recently, Funimation dubbed everything they ever released. So now that some shows like Buddy Complex and OniAi are going to DVD as subtitle-only, why do they bother? Funimation has stated outright, on ANNCast among other places, that they...
The X Button's Todd Ciolek and Fast Karate's Dave Riley once again return to ANNCast to talk all things video games: Undertale, Final Fantasy XIV, Fallout 4 and much much more! ― ANNCast Episode 244: A Game Show to Surpass Metal Gear The X Button's Todd Ciolek and Fast Karate's Dave Riley once again return to ANNCast to talk all things video games: Undertale, Final Fantasy XIV, Fallout 4 and much mu...
The first two seasons of the wildly creative explosion of light and color known as the Animator Expo are going away soon - Kevin Cirugeda is here to guide you through what's worth watching and what isn't before they're gone forever. ― People love to bring up Hideaki Anno's grim outlook on the anime industry (even after he clarified he was being misunderstood), while overlooking his efforts to improve...
It gets off to a slow start, but Netflix's exclusive 24-episode action-adventure shonen title eventually builds into something worthwhile. ― The Seven Deadly Sins (hereafter SDS) is the latest and most successful manga by Nakaba Suzuki, who has been active on one shonen title or another since the late '90s. This 24 episode anime adaptation is the first anime based on one of his works and definitely w...
"We're now seven episodes into "Jiraiya's Ninja Tales," and only now does the arc appear to be approaching its midpoint."
"This was the best episode the show's had in a while - very likely its best episode so far, in fact."
This week: Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth’s producer talks about comebacks and more! Plus the latest version of Link, the return of Valkyria Chronicles, and some good Gravity Rush news! ― Oh, Xenoblade Chronicles X. You can't stay out of trouble. Mere weeks ago, the American and European versions of the game stirred controversy with entirely justified alternations of an underage character's outfits. No...
School-Live's manga is differently paced than the anime based on it, but it's still a great combination of two disparate genres into a strangely fascinating whole. ― Warning: Spoilers for the Major Plot Twist It does feel a little foolish to put that warning here, because Yen Press, the English publisher of Norimitsu Kaihou and Sadoru Chiba's School-Live manga, puts it right there on the back of the ...
"Lest there be any lingering doubt, these stories confirm that Gintoki has no business editing manga."
"Even on a base narrative level, there wasn't all that much that happened this week."
"Dance with Devils continues its recent trend of actually providing us with answers in this episode."
Some champion fan translations. Others champion professional translations. Someone asks Justin to clarify his position on this. ― James asks: Why do you and the other staff of Anime News Network seem to have a dislike for (unofficial) fan translations of Japanese animation and manga? How do those media affect you and your website in any way, and do you have some personal stake in the matter? BIG STU...
Harem shows for women are full of 'em: emotionally manipulative vampires, boys who shove you around, men as dangerous as they are desirable. What is it about these guys that drives female fans wild? ― Back in September, I wrote about how Ouran High School Host Club kickstarted new genre sensibilities by parodying reverse harem anime. "Fujoshi comedies" are all the rage now for female otaku, but it's ...
"Like previous episodes, this week's Mr. Osomatsu is largely carried by the selfishness of its featured players."
Once again it's time to check in and see how your favorite shows are ranking according to our user polls! ― Our team of reviewers are following 24 anime series of the Fall 2015 season and readers are rating each episode as the reviews go up. So let's have a look at what ANN readers consider the best (and worst) of the season. Keep in mind that these rankings are based on how people rated individual ...
"What is the measure of a robotic life? These are the sorts of questions that Concrete Revolutio poses."
The original Mobile Suit Gundam wraps up with a bluray collection of the episodes that aired after the show was canceled and subsequently resurrected. ― In one of the earliest episodes of the Mobile Suit Gundam: Part 2 Blu-Ray collection, Amuro apologizes to a superior officer for a mutual comrade's death. Amuro believes that fewer people would have died “if I were better at using the Gundam.” The li...
"Between episodes 717 and 718 we transition from the Diamante fight to the Zoro versus Pica fight."
"In a wee twist away from the norm, this episode was light on the sakuga and heavy on the social commentary."
There's an enormous trade agreement on the table right now that could impact the anime industry and, in particular, the legality of fanart and other fan-created works. Justin gets into it. ― Usakun asks: I haven't been following news about the impending Trans-Pacific Partnership very closely, but most of what I am hearing now is increasingly negative, at least from fans living in Japan and how they ...
Another avalanche of this week's new releases, alongside full-length reviews of Tokyo Ghoul and Please Twins, two shows that really couldn't be more different. ― One would think that, after two and a half decades of dealing with daylight savings time, I'd be used to this time of year by now. One would be wrong, though, because I feel a tiny flash of personal outrage whenever I go outside around 5:30...
A Silent Voice rises to new heights of emotional acuity in a volume that perfectly captures its protagonist’s roiling emotions. ― Welcome back to A Silent Voice, your source for good kids and sadness. In this third volume, we rejoin Shoya and Shoko as they attempt to make up for lost time, growing slowly closer in spite of hesitance on both sides. In Shoko's case, we see most of her desires secondhan...
"In terms of pacing and overall storytelling, this is one of the strongest episodes that Comet Lucifer has put forward to date."
"This episode had all the elements that remind me why I became a Gundam fan in the first place."
"This week, more focus is given to the one guy who didn't spend two weeks honing his skills: Tsukishima."
"Monogatari got back to its roots this week, and by that I mean “I sure hope you like untranslatable puns and on-the-nose sex banter.”"
Mike lowers his sunglasses, ties up the net and gets ready for an onslaught of volleyball anime, including Attack No. 1 and the omnipresent Haikyuu! ― Earlier this year, my convention buddies the Reverse Thieves ran a panel at Otakon called “I Hate Sports,” as a vehicle to introduce fans to sports anime they might have otherwise ignored due to a lack of interest in the sporting activities themselves....
"On the whole, episode 7 only avoids a basement-level evaluation because Anna is pretty darn cool."
"If last week was about a mission that went perfectly, this one depicts a more typical vampire-on-human bloodbath."
"Still not a top-level series, but for yet another episode it avoids floundering."
" I do enjoy the battles, but I won't be disappointed if instead next week's episode delves into more character interactions."
"It seems like sports is the best school-life parallel to the violent events of the original Attack on Titan."
The dark fantasy series Claymore comes to a close, but will it satisfy longtime fans of the series? ― While many fans of the franchise have insisted that the anime version of Claymore spoiled things at the end by deviating from the manga, I have always insisted that the anime's ending was the better and more satisfying option at the time. Sure, the manga continued on and explained a lot of things tha...
"Episode 7 doesn't have enough material to sustain interest throughout the entire episode, so there's a lot of lag in-between."
"The False Faces is pleasant enough as the more chill experience that it's trying to be, even if it's not what I expected."
"A lot of the tension in Garo: Crimson Moon so far has come from regular ole class politics rather than Horrors."
We've been over anime based on fairytales, but what about all those anime based on Eastern myths and famous bedtime stories? Here are a bunch of 'em! ― In 2013, I wrote up a list focusing on reimagined fairy tales. A few focused on Eastern fairy tails (Fruits Basket, Saiyuki, Ceres, Celestial Legend) the other five pulled from Western staples like Cinderella, Snow White, and The Little Mermaid. Enou...
Sometimes when you're watching anime on an R1 Bluray you can't turn off the subtitles or change the audio while you're watching. What's up with that? ― Before we get started, a foot note to a previous column... My assessment of the English-speaking acting scene in Japan was quite scathing, but was only part of the story. There is, as it turns out, a small community of actual, professional multi-ling...
"Noragami knows that sometimes you have to make an audience laugh before they'll cry."
What do you do when your dream guy turns out to be a shoujo mangaka? Chiyo's started working as Nozaki's assistant, but she still isn't sure if this is the way to his heart in this very funny 4-koma series from Oresama Teacher's Izumi Tsubaki. ― Izumi Tsubaki is best known in the English-language market for her two shoujo series, both published by Viz: The Magic Touch and Oresama Teacher. Monthly Gir...
"If you get to the end of this episode without crying, you're tougher than me."
"I'm happy to see Heavy Object explore some new areas of its fictional world, and the course correction on last week's issues comes as a major relief."
15 years since Digimon's debut, with a reunion film right around the corner, Hope Chapman unpacks why Digimon of all things has endured as a seminal fan favorite. ― At the turn of the millennium, Japan was burning up with a contagious monster fever. Pokemon had become a worldwide phenomenon, and all sorts of other monster-based children's franchises began flooding the market. There was the Tamagotchi...
"How much longer will Jiraiya's self-aggrandizing, possibly treasonous fanfiction dominate the proceedings?"
Nick Creamer visits Yasuhiro Nightow's world of Hellsalem's Lot and finds a few compelling reasons to stick around. ― There's a lot to get through with Blood Blockade Battlefront, so I'll just start at the top. The show starts off by introducing us to Leonardo Watch, a boy who three years ago was caught in the “Great Collapse.” As New York City shattered to pieces in the distance, Leo and his sister ...
"Perfect Insider didn't even really try to hide the recap-ness of this episode."
"Beautiful Bones pulled a pretty neat trick this week, and shook things up by jumping away from Shoutarou and Sakurako altogether."
"This is the episode of answers. (And sexually charged song lyrics from Shiki.)"
This week is an import array with God Eater, 7th Dragon, and a scary night out! Plus Street Fighter debates, Zodiac: Orcanon Odyssey, and a Project X Zone bonus! ― This column deals with video games most of the time, but I figure I can squeeze in a tangentially related piece of news once a year. I normally use my allotment when Dark Horse releases a new volume of Eden: It's an Endless World!, but th...
Makoto and her cybernetic pals are back in the latest full-length animated Ghost in the Shell movie, set in the ARISE timeline. Is it a worthy entry in this storied, beloved sci-fi franchise? ― 20 years ago this month the original Ghost in the Shell movie debuted in theaters, offering what would quickly become the defining animated cyberpunk work. Rather than being an innovator, The New Movie is a wo...
"This episode is a good almost-end-cap to the current season's onslaught of comedy."
Anime seems more popular than ever in the West, with merchandise and DVDs common on store shelves and convention populations exploding. What happened? ― Joachim asks: If i look around me, there's more and more people starting to like anime. and i love that. but of course those people are all of western origin and not japanese, so my question is: why is anime growing so much in popularity in the west...
If you've been watching this season's smash hit One-Punch Man, you may have asked yourself "how'd they make this show look so good"? It's time to meet the wizards who make this show possible. ― One-Punch Man is one of the most impressive TV anime productions this year, one that casual fans and experts, viewers and industry members are equally amazed by. These fans are so impressed by its visuals that...
Overall, K-ON! exemplifies “better than the sum of its parts.” And that makes sense, really, because it's the beauty of the construction of these tiny moments that makes it work. ― When I reviewed K-On!, I described it as an “unassuming but quietly excellent slice of life.” Cataloging the first two years in the high school life of Houkago Tea-Time, the show established an endearing cast of characters...
You hear fans complain about one thing more than anything else: heavily rewritten and whitewashed English dubs of kids' shows like Yu-Gi-Oh! and Pokemon. But why do these hatchet jobs still exist? ― Mitchell asks: So I wanna know, why do bad dubs continue to exist to this day? I find it odd that dubbing companies out there still continue to do things that they know will annoy the fans like replace b...
Things slow down a little in this ambitious prequel series, just in time for the new film debuting this week. Also: Motoko goes on a date! ― The second Arise release includes episodes 3 and 4, each of which is a little over 50 minutes long. While each episode focuses on a specific case, the two are somewhat related and a definitely continuity exists between the two. Both episodes certainly continue t...
"Halfway through its first cour, Mr. Osomatsu shows no signs of diminishing quality."
"This week's One-Punch Man takes the long road to a simple conclusion that poor Saitama should have seen coming a mile away."
An enormous truckload of new releases appears as we head into the Christmas season, plus full reviews of Full Metal Panic Fumoffu and Inari Kon Kon! ― I feel like I've been visited by the ghost of franchises past this week. I reviewed a series that I first watched when I was around fourteen years old (see below) and played entirely too much of the newest Halo game, whose predecessors were the most w...
Full Metal Panic's light and silly Fumoffu season stands the test of time - it's just as funny to watch Sousuke blow up shoe lockers now as it was in 2005. ― Welcome back to 2003! Funimation's rescue of Full Metal Panic! Fumoffu, a series originally licensed and dubbed by ADV in 2005, is just as much fun as it ever was, although it must be said that the character designs look a little dated. Based on...
"This episode is a great example of what happens when superhuman abilities really do trickle down to the "ordinary" people."
"Sogo, Kaon, and Felia hit the road this week in search of a way to bring Felia's powers under control."
"Iron-Blooded Orphans is better at showing than telling."
"If you were hoping for a spectacular battle or two this week, you are about to be disappointed."
"Episode 6 features the lowest action quotient of any episode to date, and yet it is still a pretty solid one overall."
Check out how your favorite shows are faring in our user rankings, now that we're a full month into the new season! ― Our team of reviewers are following 24 anime series of the Fall 2015 season and readers are rating each episode as the reviews go up. So let's have a look at what ANN readers consider the best (and worst) of the season. Keep in mind that these rankings are based on how people rated i...
"Episode six is by far the strongest of the series yet, because it works on two completely different levels."
"The actions of the show's doctors are admirable, but the episode's presentation comes off as troubling instead."
"This episode was a lush visual feast that left me wanting more."
"It's time to introduce another primary cast member, Yasusuke Hakamadare!"
"It's clear from the start of this episode that both boys are nursing bruised egos and crumpled feelings."
"The truth about Oikura's mother was revealed this week, in typical roundabout Monogatari fashion."
For all articles, see the archives