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Spirit of Paladin

I thought I would add this one here, just keep in mind this one is definitively not for everybody.

Anime: Kodomo No Jikan (intro)

Summary: Perverted 4th grader Kokonoe Rin is in love (actually I would call her obsessed and a bordering stalker) with her homeroom teacher, and will stop at nothing to have him fall in love with her; she will do anything to win him over even show him her panties… and other things.

Why: Season 1 was surprisingly funny, it can get offensive easily, so watch it only if you're not insulted by a group of perverted lolitas spreading chaos in their school. Haven't watched season 2, but if it follows the manga I'm sure I won't watch it; still, season 1 is worth a try.

Comments: This one was a surprise for me, as I didn't expect to like it at all. The main thing about it is that once you get over the loli thing and see how hillarious it is you can't stop yourself from watching it.

Manga: Kodomo No Jikan.

Summary: Same as the anime. Elementary school girl has a huge crush on teacher and wants to win his love by using any means necessary.

Why: Most of the same reasons as the anime apply here, it is fun to read but only up to a point. you must keep in mind the manga goes into heavy Ecchi terrory, there are times when you feel you are reading loli hentai or regular hentai instead of a mainstream manga. Plus, some very dark issues are adressed as well as many other things one would not relate to a comedy series. This one is definitevly only for the adult crowd. It is interesting, once again only up to a point, so you might want to give it a try.

Comments: I must admit I dropped this manga a few months ago. The author apparently got the sudden need to pair up all the adult characters and somehow decided it was a fantastic idea to pair up a female teacher character (whom the mangaka had been developing and seemingly setting up for more important things for about three volumes), with a male teacher who has appeared in the manga less than the windows in the classrooms and has played a role as significant as that of a doorknob, while at the same time abandoning all the sub-plots regarding the female teacher; such a let-down kicked me right out of the story and I have not tried to read it again ever since. Something else that I must mention is that while the first three volumes are a very nice read, it is obvious than the only reason this manga is still going is because it's popular, as the story has ended and restarted a couple of times already. Story-wise, I believe Kodomo No Jikan, the manga, ran out of steam three or four volumes ago, so if you do decide to read it, do so at your own risk. As I said, it *is* worth reading up to a point, but it then gets incredibly boring, at least in my opinion.

11/25/2010 #31
Cha's Aegis

A majority of anime contain a lot of pervertedness. You just have to approach a lot of them with an open mind knowing most of it is done tongue in cheek for the laughs. Or just ignore the pervertedness and simply enjoy it as a funny anime. This one actually sounds interesting, Bonus.

11/25/2010 #32

I think part of it is that in Japan "perverts" are more accepted whereas on this side of the world it's very much frown upon by the Conservative Christian values.

Anime: Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion - Opening

Summary: From ANN - "The Empire of Britannia has invaded Japan using giant robot weapons called Knightmare Frames. Japan is now referred to as Area 11, and its people the 11's. A Britannian who was living in Japan at the time, Lelouch, vowed to his Japanese friend Suzaku that he'd destroy Britannia. Years later, Lelouch is in high school, but regularly skips out of school to go play chess and gamble on himself. One day, he stumbles on terrorists 11's who've stolen a military secret and is caught by a member of the Britannian task force sent after them, who is Suzaku. As the rest of the squad arrives, Suzaku is shot for disobeying orders, while the military secret, a young girl, gives Lelouch the power of Geass, which makes anyone obey any order. While Suzaku is secretly made the pilot of Britannia's brand new prototype Knightmare, Lancelot, Lelouch becomes the masked Zero to lead the rebellion to destroy Britannia once and for all."

Goody's notes on why it's good: When I first heard of this I wasn't expecting much but this is quite the interesting series as you follow the main character as he literately builds his rebellion form the ground up. Add to that the action and the various mecha and you've got something here. I do have to note that near the end it's gets a bit confusing.

Anime: Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion R2 - Opening

Summary: From ANN "It's been one year since the failure of the Black Rebellion and the supposed death of Zero. Britannia has assigned Area 11 a "correctional education" status, where Elevens are made an example of by brute force, to try to prevent any future uprisings and suppress rebellious thoughts. Unsuspecting high school student Lelouch, oblivious to his rebellious past as Zero, stumbles upon a scheme on his life and the life of a mysterious woman known as C.C., who reveals to him his forgotten purpose and his "true" self. Destroying his assailants and declaring himself Zero once again, Lelouch sets out to finish what he started."

Goody's notes on why it's good: It's not really a sequel more a continuation as this began the breaking of 50+ episode animes into airing "seasons". While it does pick up from where the story left off this one does get really goofy at points and the story gets a tad over the top. That all said the added and new mecha does help as does the grander battles and what not. Just a word of warning - this time around they seem to go out of their way to play the fanservice game with Kallen.

11/25/2010 #33
Marie Nomad

Can I recommend some comic book mini series that I enjoyed but not many people know about?

11/27/2010 #34
Cha's Aegis

Go for it, Marie. That's close enough to being a manga, so it works for me. ^_^

11/27/2010 #35
Dr Facer

I'm going to post some of the anime I enjoy here, please bear with me as I'm going into Super Rbot fanboy mode.

Anime: Shin Mazinger Z Opening 1

Summary: A remake/update of the classic Mazinger Z anime. Watch as High School student Koji Kabuto receives the powerful Super Robot, Mazinger Z and fights a battle for peace against the forces of the evil Dr. Hell.

Personal thoughts: While I absolutely love the classic Mazinger Z anime (and really, Mazinger is my absolute favorite thing in the world.) I can understand if it's too old looking for newer audiences. This update, however, is very good, it pays homage to the classic series and it manages to adapt some of the best arcs of the original manga in a very good way. Is it worth watching? Well, Mazinger Z was the first piloted Super Robot and is one of the most important and influential series ever created; as an introduction to the world of Z, this update works very well.

Anime: Mazinkaiser opening

Summary: After a surprise attack by Dr. Hell's forces means the defeat of Mazinger Z, Koji Kabuto receives from his grandfather the mighty Mazinkaiser, an unstoppable machine with a power that surpasses even that of a God.

Personal thoughts: Mazinkaiser is the ultimate Mazinger, and it is in my opinion the definition of what the coolest super robot should be. It is also the most powerful mecha created by Go Nagai's Dynamic studios, and one of the most powerful machines in anime overall. This anime is very fun, exciting and a great shout back to old school mecha anime.

Anime: Shin Getter Robo opening 2

Summary: The world is at the hands of the extraterrestrial menace of the Invaders, only the Getter team, piloting the mighty Shin Getter Robo, have a chance to stop them and save human race.

Personal thoughts: I think the Mazinger type mecha are the coolest Super Robots, but on the other hand I believe the Getter types are the most badass. Prove of that is this particular series.

I understand most people are not really into mecha or Super robots, but these three recommendations are actually fun to watch, so I hope some of you can give them a try sometime.

11/29/2010 #36

Ah, I was wondering if I was the only super robot fan here. :)

My one problem with Shin Mazinger was that it didn't focus on the Mazinger enough and more on the other people. Yes, I know they're from another of Uncle Go's series but I wanted my super robot action darn it.

Have you seen the mazinkaiser follow-up move/OVa Dr. Facer?

ah well, might as well list it :)

Anime: Mazinkaiser: Shitou! Ankoku Daishgun

Summary: From ANN: "A race of subterranean beasts called the "Mikene" appear out of nowhere and indiscrimiately wreak havoc all over the world. Their goal: the death of Mazinkaiser pilot Kouji Kabuto. As these monstrous beings destroy cities and decimate the Mazinger Army, Kouji must race against time to once again pilot Mazinkaiser and defeat the Mikene and their feared leader Ankoku Daishogun."

Goody's Notes on why it's good: A follow up/sequel to "Mazinkasier" this OVa is essentially action from start to finish. The animation is on par with Mazinkaiser so you know what you're getting. Basically, if you like your super robots big, bad and doing super robot things than this is for you.

11/29/2010 . Edited 11/29/2010 #37

and following that let's stick to the super robot theme along with the trend that started in 2004 with the updating/remaking of various super robot shows.

Anime: New Getter Robo (aka Shin Getter Robo 2004) - Opening

Summary: From ANN "Humanity is under attack by demonic creatures called Oni. Unable to fight back by any other means, the scientist Dr. Saotome creates a series of giant robots that harness the mysterious power of Getter Rays, giving them the strength necessary to fight the Oni. The strongest of these is Getter Robo, and Saotome must enlist three very different men to pilot it - martial artist Ryoma Nagare, criminal leader Hayato Jin, and monk Benkei Musashibou. Together, the Getter Team fights to end the Oni menace forever."

Goody's notes why it's good: For fans of the old school Getter Robo this retelling takes the idea and turns it on it's ear a bit. Not the team isn't exactly a team like they were in the 70's. Saotome isn't exactly on the up and up and the idea behind the Getter rays is quite different. It was also made in a time when cel-shaded animation was a fad so it has a very unique look compared to other anime. Oh, and it's got Ryoma at his craziest and more violent to date.

Anime: Gaiking: Legend of Daiku-maryu - Opening

Summary: From ANN "Five years ago, Daiya Tsuwabuki went on a fishing trip with his father, when giant monsters attacked them. While he was saved by a mysterious group of people, his father went missing. In the present, Daiya believes that the monsters were real & that his missing father is still alive, despite the disbelief of others. All of a sudden, monsters similar to the ones in Daiya's past began to attack the city. In the process, he meets Gaiking, a giant mech. Daiya eventually gets into Gaiking, and defeats the monster. However, he soon finds out that the owners of Gaiking are the Daikû Maryû, the same group that rescued Daiya five years ago. Soon afterwards, Daiya joins the group in their mission to enter the underground world known as Darius in order to prevent the monsters from taking over the outside world, as well as to find his father."

Goody's notes on why it's good: I know, you see little kid and groan. I did the same till I actually started watching it and guess what? It's actually good. Daiya isn't perfect and doesn't fight perfect with Gaiking in the beginning at all. I like that instead of the usual wonder-kid who's perfect as soon as he drives the robot. I also like that they give a story that makes a bit more sense (till near the end but it's forgivable) and the fact that what we think we know about Gaiking isn't so once the enemy deploys they counter err, counters.

and one more to end the day

Anime: Kotetsushin Jeeg - Opening

Summary: From ANN "The story of Kotetsushin Jeeg takes place fifty years after the original and features a new cast of characters - primarily the new main character Kenji Kusanagi, a high school student and motorcycle racer who becomes Kotetsushin Jeeg to fight the sudden reappearance of (Haniwa Phantom Gods, or clay robots) from the Jamada Empire ruled by Queen Himika."

Goody's notes on why it's good: This one is another surprise. I had no real experience to the original Jeeg until I played the Super Robot Wars games and then caught this by sheer chance. Again, a sorta retelling though it can be considered a sequel this one works at bringing an old anime up to date. I can't really discuss more without spoiler so if you like super robots then don't miss this gem.

11/29/2010 #38
Dr Facer

Nice anime you're bringing to the topic, Goody.

I agree with you on the fact that Shin Mazinger is a little heavy on characters and story and could have used more Super Robot smashing action. But I still liked it a lot for several reasons; the Lorelei arc for example, had never been adapted into anime this well (the original Mazinger didn't do it this good), and the fight with Dr Hell at the end is the closest to the start of Great Mazinger's manga that I could have asked for; also, it has Baron Ashura playing a pivotal role and that's fantastic for me, it also has a Gamia Q doing very awesome things and Tsubasa Nishikiori (one of my most beloved secondary characters from Violence Jack) shows up playing a role that fits her amazingly well, I won't spoil what it is but I feel no other female character created by Go Nagai would have been as good as Nishikiori was for that.

Of course I've seen Mazinkaiser's movie, that was an awesome Super Robot animation and the best way to end the Mazinkaiser story so far. Let's see if Mazinkaiser SKL is at least half as good.

New Getter Robo from 2004 was awesome, I consider it the closest in spirit to the manga a Getter anime has gotten so far. I liked Gaiking Legend of Daikyu Maru a lot; I liked the original series and this update was better IMO, I agree with you on Daiya, he reminded me of early Koji with his struggles while piloting Gaiking; this is a very good series and frankly, how can you not love Gaiking? It has a freaking giant, golden skull for a torso and a massive Dragon space ship for back up!

Shin Jeeg is my favorite of the last three series you posted Goody. I remember watching most of the original Jeeg as a kid and liking it very much; when I got to watch Shin Jeeg it amazed me and took me on a nostalgic trip. I won't spoil anything, but Chapters 11 to 13 were a dream come true for this old Jeeg fan, and there's one scene with the main characters from the original that is incredibly emotive and it resonates even more if nostalgia is involved.

Ok... let's leave it at that. I'll post only one recommendation today, I'll tackle more Super Robot shows later (there aren't that many left that I enjoy much, though), but this one is something that deserves to be watched.

Anime: Space Runaway Ideon opening

Summary: Far in the future, mankind has started colonizing other planets, one day, a group of colonists in the planet Solo discover what turns out to be three large vehicles that can combine into the Ideon, the group also discovers a large shuttle, called the Solo Ship. Months later, the machines are restored and then an alien race known as the Buff Clan comes to planet Solo intending to take the Ideon. This conflict escalates into a full war between the humans and Buff Clan that ends in catastrophe, and I do mean catastrophe.

Personal thoughts: Despite its lack of popularity, Space Runaway Ideon has been considered for a long time to be one of the best anime ever made, and for a good reason. This is a dark, space epic that would make any Sci-Fi author proud. I didn't lie when I said the war in Ideon ends in catastrophe, as this series is not what you would call happy. Still, it is amazing to watch and the story is as deep and engrossing as they can come. Also, it has the Ideon, which is arguably the most powerful mecha ever created, (I sincerely think the Ideon could eat a Gurren Lagan for breakfast and then ask for seconds.) I know that is saying a lot, but considering how the Ideon can vaporize solar systems in a flash and cut galaxies in half, it might not be an exageration.

12/1/2010 #39

Ah Ideon. My one issue with it Doc was that it fell into you a-typical Tomino storytelling. That's not a bad thing mind you but it felt kinda disjointed at times. And let's face it - it was the Ideon that wasn't powerful but it was Cosmo's fro that had all the power! :P

A couple from me today

Anime: Tenga Toppa Gurren Lagann - Opening

Summary: From ANN "In their closed-off underground village, Kamina and Simon chafe at the limits imposed by the village elder. Yet all this will change, when Simon stumbles across a fantastic device - just as the village's peace is broken by a violent intrusion."

Goody's notes on why it's good: This is a series that remind everyone why you love crazy super robot action. In the beginning it knows it's a crazy over the top series and runs with it and takes you on the fun ride. But that's not all, a few surprising twists and then the real story kicks in halfway through that really shows why so many fell in love with this series. It's isn't perfect mind you, there are flaws but if you give it a chance and don't close your mind you'll be in for a nice treat.

Anime: Shin Getter vs Neo Getter robo - Opening

Summary: From ANN "Years after the defeat of the Reptilian Empire, Getter Team has begun training on a new super robot, Neo Getter Robo. But a surprise attack from the Empire's revived leader forces them to recruit a street fighter named Go Ichimonji as Getter One's pilot. Faced with an enormously powerful foe, the new team's only hope for victory may lie in the resurrection of the lost weapon of humanity, Shin Getter Robo."

Goody's Notes on why it's good: A quick 4 part ova of getter robo goodness. Another one for getting fans that leaves you wanting more.

12/1/2010 . Edited 12/2/2010 #40
Spirit of Paladin

So much heavy metal lately! I'll check the Getter Robo stuff later as it seems interesting, even if I don't know a single thing about it, and I might listen to some Metallica in the process (just kidding ^_^ I mean, these are big robots made of metal, so...)

Anyway, I feel like talking about sports manga, so here's a pair:

Manga: Beach Stars.

Summary: Nanase Iruka is a young, short tomboy who loves only one thing in life: Volleyball. When her high school's volleyball club is closed, she feels depressed until she discovers Beach Volleyball. Iruka can't wait to try this new side of her favorite sportl, even if she ends up creating quite a few rivalries in the process of being a successful Beach Volleyball player.

Why: Loads of hot anime chicks in bikinis jumping around. Need I say more?

Comments: Ok, yes, it's another fanservice manga. That said, it is very fun and Iruka is one of the liveliest, most comedic characters I've found lately.

Manga: Captain Tsubasa.

Summary: Tsubasa Ozora is a young boy who loves soccer more than anything in the world, and will stop at nothing to follow his dream of being the best player of his generation. The fact he's incredibly gifted for the sport and can perform superior plays after watching them once without any type of apparent training doesn't hurt his chances, either.

Why: It's one of the best sports based manga ever.

Comments: I admit Tsubasa Ozora is the picture of the Gary Stu golden boy of sports manga (he even defeats a semi pro boxer at one point with a kick that breaks the boxer's arm and shoulder), but this is a story you read because of the supporting characters, since Tsubasa's rivals (Kojiro Hyuga kicks a lot of @ss, trust me on this) who later become his teammates are the ones that really make the story as good as it is. The later parts of the manga (what has been published the last seven years or so) are not really that interesting because they mostly focus on how perfectly perfect Tsubasa's perfect life of absolute perfection is; but the first part, when Tsubasa is a kid chasing his dream, well, that's really worth it.

12/2/2010 #41

Well Bonus, the band that does the themes for most of the newer super robot anime's I've put up (Jam project) are classified as "Heavy metal/Jrock" so you're not off in your thinking. Also, if you want to know the order for getter robo it goes "Getter Robo' - "Getter Robo G" and after then everything else is an unofficial sequel, other than New getter Robo which is a "reboot". You can essentially watch Shin Getter and Shin Getter vs Neo Getter and it wouldn't throw you off other than you wouldn't exactly know who all the characters are.

Also, wasn't Captain Tsubasa adpated into an anime?

and with that I guess it's time to break out another of the "big boys" that seem to have been missed by much of the younger sect

Anime: Neon Genesis Evangelion - Opening

Summary: From ANN "At the age of 14 Shinji Ikari is summoned by his father to the city of Neo Tokyo-3 after several years of separation. There he unwillingly accepts the task of becoming the pilot of a giant robot by the name EVA01 and protect the world from the enigmatic invaders known as "angels." Even though he repeatedly questions why he has accepted this mission from his estranged and cold father, his doing so helps him to gradually accept himself. However, why exactly are the angels attacking and what are his father's true intentions are yet to be unraveled."

Goody's Notes on why it's good: This is essentially one of those animes that forces you to think and try to figure out what's happening and doesn't spoon feed everything to you. The action scenes are very intense and with such an deep plot and story you'll probably find yourself watching it a few times to try and wrap your head about it. Over the years Eva even gained the myth of "Gundam killer" as many still cling to the idea that Gundam X was canceled because of it (not true, they were on different timeslots). It's not a story for everyone and it can get quite violent and some of the ideas might be a bit too much for the younger members but it's something everyone should watch at least one.

12/2/2010 . Edited 12/2/2010 #42
Spirit of Paladin

wasn't Captain Tsubasa adpated into an amine?

Yes, Goody, it was adapted into an anime. I watched the latin version of it thanks to an uncle who gave it to me (said it'd help my Spanish, and it did). It's a nice watch, so might as well post it.

Anime: Captain Tsubasa (opening 1)

Summary: Tsubasa Ozora chases his dream of going to Brazil so he can learn and play soccer as a profesional player.

Why: It's a good sports anime, and yes, it's based on soccer. The supporting characters, again, are very good and make the series what it is.

Comments: Tsubasa is, thankfully, less of a Gary Stu here; he still stinks of it, but not as much as in the manga. The fact this anime is based on Tsubasa's childhood helps a lot. It's also fun to watch Japanese kids jump 12 meters into the air and elementary school soccer games being watched by thousands of adults...

About the Getter Robo stuff, thanks! I'll go watch some of it on youtube, I'm sure there's got to be something there, at least the OVAS you mentioned. Didn't know about Jam project, I'll check that out as well.

12/2/2010 #43
Cha's Aegis

I wish here in the U.S. we'd just go along with the rest of the world and call it 'futbol,' it's hard enough remembering what to call it when the world cup comes around. ;P

My sis introduced me to this one.

Anime: Seirei no Moribito (Guardian of the Sacred Spirit) Trailer

Summary: From ANN:

Balsa the spearwoman is a wandering warrior, who takes on the task of saving lives, in atonement for a past sin. On her journey, she happens to save a prince, and is tasked with becoming his bodyguard. And he is going to need one, for his own father, the emperor, wants him dead. Balsa, the spear wielder and bodyguard, is visiting the New Yogo Empire. She is hired to protect the Second Prince, Chagum, who is endangered because he is possessed by a being despised by his father, the Emperor, who ordered his assasination. The two go on a perilous adventure for the survival of the prince. Throughout the story, Balsa's past will come to light and they will uncover mysteries about Chagum's condition while developing a family-like relationship with each other and others.

Why: Very engaging story that balances everything perfectly. You get a bit of myth, mystery, lots of action, magic, humor and drama.

Comments: It's always fun seeing a female character kick butt, but she's no Mary Sue. I was sitting with my sis while she was watching this on her comp through netflix and the d*mn thing distracted me. It was horrible. ;P Highly recommend it. It was originally a novel adapted into an anime and very well done. The animation is beautiful and you never scratch your head wondering why in the hell they do that? No one's recommended this one yet and no respectable anime collection should be without it. ;P

Anime: Cowboy Bebop Opening

Summary: Spike Spiegel, a bounty Hunter with a dark past, lives on bounty to bounty, barely making it each time, or not making it at all. His partners Jet Black, Faye Valentine, Ed and Ein the dog all help him in his adventures from planet to planet.

Why: Unlike anything you've seen before. Definitely for more mature audiences because of the violence, depiction of drug use and some sexual situations. Not necessarily 'MA' but definitely 'M.'

Comments: Engaging story and who doesn't like the anti-hero? Jazz music and culture permeate through this entire anime. Even the characters are usually named after Jazz musicians. You can't resist getting drawn in by the characters and storylines, which focus heavily on the pasts of the main protagonists.

12/2/2010 . Edited 12/2/2010 #44

Dang it cha, I was planning on posting Seirei no Moribito today. Are you and your sister trying to read my mind again and pluck anime from it? ;)

It's quite good and I didn't think it would be as good as it turned out to be.

Anime: Overman King Gainer - Opening

Summary: From ANN "Sometime in the distant future, mankind is forced to live in domed cities while the rest of the world is left to recover from years of environmental hardships. In the Siberian Dome-polis, professional gamer Gainer Sanga and mercenary Gain Bijou commandeer an Overman and lead a mass exodus out of the city."

Goody's Notes on Why it's good: A super robot series that while serious is also quite lighthearted and fun. It's not the greatest as it's another Tomino series that kinda feels disjointed at times but the action, unique mecha, animation and such make it worth seeing.

Anime: Ninja Scroll - Trailer

Summary: From ANN "Jubei is wandering noble sword for hire but when a chance meeting leads him to save young ninja woman from rape he makes enemies with a group of demonic humans. Jubei and the woman part ways but later a government spy forces Jubei to join up with her again and investigate the mysterious death of an entire village. The investigation reveals a conspiracy involving the demons and a man from Jubei's past who is supposed to be dead. As they get closer to the truth the demons close in on them and pretty soon Jubei finds himself in a deadly fight with many super strong inhuman opponents."

Goody's notes on why it's good: Let it be said - this is M. There is no bones about it given the blood and gore (and bits of nudity) and violence. If you are the squeamish type when it comes to blood then you might be best to skip it. If none of the above troubles you then you're in store for one hell of a kickass samurai/ninja flick. Can't say anything more without spoilers.

Anime: Blue Gender - Opening

Summary: From ANN "Yuji Kaido was diagnosed with a serious disease and cryogenically frozen. He wakes up more than 20 years later--and Earth is nothing like what he remembers. A race of alien bugs called the Blue have taken over the planet, and a few select humans have retreated to the space station Second Earth. Yuji is taken back to Second Earth, where he learns that he and the other sleepers will be instrumental in defeating the Blue. And his relationship with one member of the recovery squad only serves to complicate things."

Goody's notes on why it's good: This is a real dark story for those looking for one. It's not for the faint of heart either and it can get bloody and intense at times. Just when you think the story is going to go a certain way (half way through the series) it suddenly changes and you see there's more going on then you expected. Oh and you can go wrong with mecha battle suits. :)

12/3/2010 . Edited 12/3/2010 #45

Cha, definitely watching Seirei no Moribito now. :D It looks awesome.

Okay, here's the anime I was talking about a bit ago in the chat.

Anime: Durarara!!/Drrr!!/Dullalala!! (Oh the joys of converting Japanese to English...basically it's supposed to suggest the sound of a motorbike. You'll find it most often under the first name) Opening

Summary: (Wikipedia) Mikado Ryūgamine is a young man who longs for the exciting life of the big city. At the invitation of his childhood friend Masaomi, he transfers to a school in Ikebukuro, Tokyo. Masaomi warns him about people he doesn't want to cross in the city: a violent man dressed like a bartender, an information merchant, and a mysterious gang called "Dollars." And to top it off, Mikado witnesses an urban legend on his first day in the city: the "Black Rider," the supposedly headless driver of a black motorcycle. The narrative follows all of the characters equally, showing how their lives intersect, creating a greater plotline from what each character knows about a common incident.

Why It's Good: Where to even start...This anime begins slowly and seems fairly common at first- transfer student, school drama, etc etc. But as you go, it slowly winds up and becomes more and more crazy and action-packed and twisted. The foreshadowing builds up from the very beginning, and yet the plot takes so many twists that I was always surprised. The storytelling method uses the viewpoints of many different characters and even chatrooms and phone calls- above all, each character by his or herself is an unreliable narrator, so it keeps the watcher guessing. The character development was incredible as well- no spoilers, but anything that you think about the characters in the first two episodes is probably wrong, because they have so many secrets and hidden depths. The juxtaposition of the supernatural against the three warring gangs makes this different from any anime I've watched so far, and the two arcs of the story- the Slasher arc and the Dollars arc- are very different from one another and yet tie everything together still. (The first is more supernatural- there's a couple of quite frightening scenes there- and the second is more focused on the gangs and the interactions between the three main characters.) The art is lovely and the jazzy score was very interesting and added to the surreal experience. It'll keep you hooked and guessing the entire time.

Comments: This is one of my very favorite anime ever. Awesome opening and ending sequences, a plot that isn't straightforward (hah, it's the opposite of straightforward), wonderful three-dimensional characters, spine-tingling moments, fight scenes, and even some romance- it defies traditional classifications. Definitely deserving of a rewatch.

12/5/2010 #46

Anime: BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad - Opening

Summary: From ANN "Tanaka Yukio, better known by his nickname Koyuki is a 14 year old who feels disconnected from life in general. Through the act of saving a mismatched dog, he meets guitarist Minami Ryuusuke, and becomes involved in Ryuusuke's new band BECK. Koyuki's life starts to change as the band struggles towards fame."

Goody's notes on why it's good: This is something I think most would enjoy as we all can understand the drive to form a band and try to hit it big. The music is quite good as well as the series touches on the road, with it's bumps, towards that goal as the band goes through their ups and downs. This isn't normally something I would watch but I caught it on tv here and I actually found myself enjoying it. Better than the endless Degrassi reruns it was later replaced by.

12/5/2010 #47
Cha's Aegis

BECK is a great suggestion, Goody. Okay, didn't think I'd have another so soon, but I'm stunned, absolutely stunned no one thought of this one yet. Did I say I was stunned? ;P

Anime/manga: FLCL aka Fooly Cooly Opening

Summary: Off of Wiki and ANN because both give different summaries:

ANN: Naota is a normal Japanese 6th grade boy (although a little cynical), but when his older brother leaves for America to play baseball, his brother leaves his homeless 17 year old girlfriend Mamimi behind. Mamimi is sending mixed signals and advances to Naota, and he doesn't know what to do about her. But to make matters worse, Naota's world is totally turned upside down when he is run over by a woman on a Vespa. During their first encounter, she hits him over the head with her guitar, which then causes a horn to grow out of his forehead. She calls herself "Haruko" and her presence changes Naota's life to even further insanity.

Wiki: FLCL revolves around Naota. His life is interrupted by the arrival of Haruko Haruhara, who bursts on the scene by running Naota over with her Vespa scooter, then giving him CPR and hitting him on the head with a blue vintage Rickenbacker 4001 left-handed electric bass guitar. Later, Naota is shocked to find Haruko working in his house as a live-in maid.

Since then, Giant Robots from Medical Mechanica have been coming out of Naota's head and cause more problems for Naota and Haruko. Haruko is using Naota for her search for the Pirate King, Atomsk, which puts her at odds with Medical Mechanica, the monolithic industrial corporation. At the same time, Naota is being watched by Commander Amarao, who believes that Medical Mechanica is out to conquer the galaxy. The combination of circumstances gets Naota involved in a three-way battle between Haruko, Amarao and Medical Mechanica. The underlying theme is Naota's coming of age as he becomes more mature and learns to express his feelings.

Why/comments: Anyone well versed in their anime/manga will tell you this is a must see. I seriously think the creators smoked some funky stuff when they created this manga. It's pretty darn funny. Only one slight little spoiler with this, you've got to love an anime that has a robot named Kanchi "poop" out Naota. It's twisted and at times a bit bizarre, but it's more tongue in cheek and doesn't leave you scratching your head. It's also great because no matter how many times you watch or read, you always find something new. There is nothing to hate in this cracked up anime. ;P

12/5/2010 . Edited 12/5/2010 #48
Dr Facer

I love Ninja Scroll. Anyway, to finish with the Super Robot theme here's this last three.

Anime: Chōdenji Robo Combattler V opening

Summary: (from Wikipedia) Thousands of years ago, the people of the planet Campbell decided to leave their planet and seek out new worlds to inhabit. One group, lead by the scientist Oreana, landed on Earth, but was delayed from their mission. In the early 21st century, Oreana's group reawakens and begins their plan to conquer the Earth. The only effective defense against the Campbellians' giant bio-mechanical slave beasts is the super-electromagnetic robot, Combattler V and its pilots.

Personal thoughts: This is the first part of Tadao Nagahama´s Super Robot Trilogy, and it is a very fun series. While it follows the "monster of the week" format of the time, it has a very extensive cast of characters, from the five pilots to the villains, and it manages to make them all play an important part. I think it's not as good, story wise, as the two following series, but Combattler V is very fun to watch.

Anme: Chōdenji Machine Voltes V opening

Summary: (from ANN) From out of nowhere, a mysterious alien race known as the Boazan Forces has invaded the Earth. A group of individuals specially trained to handle this kind of situation has been unleashed. Kenichi, Ippei, Daijiro, Hiyoshi & Megumi are the pilots of the Choudenji Machine Voltes V (5), Earth's defense against the Boazan and their terrible Beast Warriors. The plot thickens as the Go Brothers discover their true heritage and the truth behind their father's disappearance. Conflicts and mixed emotions hinder the Go Brothers at times but due to their unwaivering desire to find their dad, they must go to the place where it all started. With the help of the rebels based on Earth and on the aliens' homeworld, the Voltes Team has another mission, remove the tyrant Zu Zanbajil and liberate the people of Boazan.

Personal thoughts: Voltus V is very interesting, it takes the concepts introduced by Combattler V: extensive cast of characters both heroes and villains, and builds on it in quite an extensive way. Here the villains are as deep as the heroes and perhaps even a little more. The series also stand out for its more adult and serious tone when compared to Combattler V, and it is structured in a way that, while still following the "monster of the week" standard, manages to keep the story going far better than what was seen in Combattler V.

Anime: Tosho Daimos opening

Summary: (from ANN) The survivors of Planet Baam and the Earth people want to sign a peace treaty, so General Lion and the reknowned scientist Dr. Ryuuzaki head out to have a reunion. But Lion dies in odd circumstances, his vengeful son Richter kills Dr. Ryuzaki - and war starts. Dr. Ryuzaki's son, young martial artist Kazuya, decides to defend Earth with Dr. Izumi's powerful robot: Tosho Daimos...

Personal thoughts: This is the final part of the Nagahama Super Robot Trilogy, and my favorite. The action scenes are some of the best I've seen in a Super Robot anime, and they still hold well even today; the story is quite deep, and it focuses a lot on the villains, which are shown as not a complete evil force but more as a desperate society near their own extinction. Erika and Richter's relationship is also quite endearing to watch, and it is one of the things that makes this series stand out. If you are going to watch only one of these three shows, Daimos is the best choice.

12/7/2010 #49

Looks like the good Doctor is going through his Super Robot Wars rollidex ;)

A couple more classics from my childhood

Anime: UFO Robo Grendizer - Opening

Summary: From ANN "Duke Fleed is a survivor of the Vega Star, raised by Dr. Umon as his adoptive son, and known as Daisuke Umon on Earth. Years after his arrival, he's faced with the threat of King Vega and his army, who want to conquer the Earth. With his friends Koji and Hikaru (and later his kid sister Maria Grace), Duke decides to fight back using his best weapon - the almighty Grendizer."

Goody's notes on why it's good: More classic super robot goodness with more of what everyone loves. This one is different from the others of it's time as it's starts out fairly light hearted but as the series progresses it gets darker and darker which sets it apart. It's also considered the cousin to the Mazinger line of series.

Anime: Danguard Ace - Opening

Summary: From Wiki "Danguard Ace takes place on a future Earth in which nearly all natural resources have been depleted. People have begun looking toward other planets to survive, in particular the fictional tenth planet, Promete. Although people had hoped to peacefully begin settlement there, disaster strikes as the first explorers are destroyed by betrayal.

After this event, an individual named Mr. Doppler leaves toward Promete on his own ship, and declares himself Chancellor of the planet. Using Promete's resources, Chancellor Doppler constructs a vast military force greater than that of Earth's. He forbids anyone approaching the planet, under the insane belief that only he is entitled to it.

To gain control of Promete, the governments of Earth begin constructing massive combat robots. Doppler is able to attack and destroy all robots before they are completed, except for Danguard Ace. The forces sent to attack Danguard's base were destroyed because of the efforts of Captain Dan. Nothing is known of this mysterious man, save that he previously served Doppler while under mind control.

Takuma Ichimonji, son of the man who betrayed the initial Promete exploration team, becomes a cadet at Danguard's base. Ichimonji hopes that he might restore his fathers honor by fighting against Doppler's forces."

Goody's notes on why it's good: Simply put it's super robot goodness at it's best and this one hold a special place in my heart being the 2nd anime I've seen.

12/7/2010 . Edited 12/11/2010 #50
Cha's Aegis

Alright, I've mentioned this anime before, so it's past time I stuck it up here.

Anime: Beast King Go Lion Uncut dvd trailer

Summary: Wiki: GoLion's story starts in the year 1999, when the planet Altea is subdued and enslaved by the Galra Empire. Five space pilots return to Earth to find the planet annihilated by thermonuclear war. Eventually, the explorers are captured and enslaved, and forced to fight for their lives in Emperor Daibazaal's arena. The young pilots escape and eventually land on the planet Altea, where they discover the secret of the mighty sentient robot GoLion, the only weapon powerful enough to defeat Emperor Daibazaal's forces. Thousands of years ago, GoLion was an arrogant robot who, after defeating several Beastmen, tried to challenge a goddess to battle, but failed. To teach him humility, the goddess separated him into five pieces in the form of five lion robots that sailed through space and crash-landed on Altea, to lay in wait for those who would one day reawaken him to fight evil once again.

Why: It's five man mecha team violence, what more could you ask for?

Comment: A bit cheesy at times, but what do you expect? It's from the 80's. Definitely not as cheesy as Gatchaman and the storyline is deeper, but you do get a sparkly princess sue who's butt is getting saved more than she's actually contributing as a team member. Eh, could be worse, but it is fun. Much more violent than what was shown in the U.S Voltron version as the trailer demonstrates. Yes, nobody died. They all were safe somewhere else.

I should've done this sooner, but I'm backing up a little and giving you guys the openings for two animes I recommended earlier.

Samurai 7


12/9/2010 #51
Sincerely C

Anime: Uragiri wa Boku no Namae wo Shitteiru (Uraboku, or Betrayal Knows My Name) - Opening

Summary: Sakurai Yuki is a mysterious boy with a mysterious ability. He was found in the bushes as a baby and adopted by his current family. Because of this, Yuki strives for independence. The last thing he wants is to be a burden to anybody. Furthermore, when he touches others, he can feel their emotions. Unable to control his ability, he often made insensitive blunders in the past. With death threats and his abilities increasing, what will happen when a man claiming to be his older brother appears? (Source: Uragiri manga synopsis)

Warning: Shounen ai (though I'm on the last episode and I have yet to see anything romance-ish other than the protectiveness of their loved ones) If you are a strict hetero pairings person, this isn't for you because other than one, I have seen nothing but implied malexmale relationships. No actual romance, so it's not like it would make anyone too uncomfortable, but just to be safe.

Why It's Good: It's a great combonation of a spiritual, good vs evil, battle type anime, with romance and some humor here and there.

Comment: It deals with the subject of a boy who feels no meaning in his life, but is taken in by a clan of protectors after learning of his unawakened powers. The main villains being Duras (demons that in some way remind me of Hallows from Bleach.) Each character has their own burden from a past life or their own past that they must deal with and with the help of Yuki, the kind-hearted protagonist, they each face their demons while facing the powers of the evil Duras. Yuki's main love interest being Zess, a mysterious and good demon who seemed to have loved Yuki in his past life (as a woman.) Can't say anything else without spoilers if I haven't already said to much.

Goody Edit - got you the opening on youtube C

12/11/2010 . Edited by MrGoodyTwoShoes, 12/11/2010 #52
Cha's Aegis

Manga: Trinity Blood Trailer (for anime).

Summary: ANN: The background is in the distant future after the destruction brought about by Armageddon. The war between the vampires and the humans continue to persist. In order to protect the humans from the vampires, Vatican has to rely on other allies to counter the situation. The protagonist, a priest called Peter Abel Nightroad, travels through the countries as a representative for the Vaticans. However, he is also part of "Ax", a special operations group controlled by the Cardinal Catherina. His encounter with a young girl called Esther will determine the struggle and survival between the human race and the vampires.

Why: Even if you aren't into horror, this series isn't too heavy on the actual horror. It's a plot more complicated than humans surviving against vampires.

Comment: I recommend the manga over the anime and the novels on this one. The novels are okay, but they're not that engaging. I got bored on the first one. As for the anime, visually it's great. They use a lot of CG animation, but I felt they rushed the story line too much. The conclusion was satisfactory enough, so for a short run anime it's decent. However, the manga expands on the plot a lot more and I'm finding I'm enjoying it a lot more than I did the anime or novel. Not as gory as you'd expect, so might disappoint true horror fans, but the twist on the run of the mill vampire storyline was new.

12/13/2010 #53

A few goodies not yet listed here, along with introductory AMVs that may contain spoilers:

Anime: Princess Tutu

Summary: When an author known for his tragedies gets a terminal case of writer's block, he invites a duck to step in to the story and assist the main character, a prince who divided up his heart to contain a monster raven. Duck is disguised as a clumsy human ballet student who can transform into the graceful Princess Tutu whenever she gets close to a piece of the prince's heart. The story cannot move forward until Duck, as Tutu, has found and returned all the pieces of the prince's heart, but not everyone wants to keep going as their author intended.

What makes Warg Squee: It's a magical girl anime, but it sure ain't defeat monster of the week, make new friend, rinse, repeat with no long-term impact. This is the magical girl show for real men. The plot gets complicated and dark without losing hope, the main characters are multilayered, and for a fan of fairytales, ballet, opera, and/or classical music, there are lots and lots of in-jokes and references, even besides the multiple layers of fourth wall they break through. It's a fun head-trip that you can just as easily sit back and enjoy for the pretty.

Anime: Pumpkin Scissors

Summary: After the Empire abruptly ends its war with the Republic of Frost, young, headstrong, idealistic Lt. Alice Malvin joins easygoing Section III, the Pumpkin Scissors, and vows to turn her unit into a force for war reparations to her people. Unfortunately, Corporal Randel Oland, a gentle giant of an anti-tank trooper who takes out the machines with nothing more than a single-shot handgun, a pair of pliers, and a hypnotic blue lantern is about the best thing to come out of the Empire's experiments, and just because the war's over doesn't mean they're done.

What Makes Warg Squee: Seriously, Randel takes out tanks. With a handgun. And Alice would try it with a sword if her men would let her. Besides the awesome action, the characters are sweet and funny and the world has a nice lived-in feel to it as the gang investigate conspiracy theories, racketeering operations, and abuses of the empire's people. The bad news is that we get too much filler, but it just makes me wish for a second season to round it off. (Comparisons to Fullmetal Alchemist's Armstrongs, Alphonse, Roy, Riza, Jean, Kain, and Bradley strictly optional, but add to the fun.)

Anime/Manga: Wolf's Rain

Summary: Far in the future, the human race believes wolves have been extinct for the past two hundred years. The truth is that they've merely learned how to blend in, adopting humanoid illusions to fool those that would hunt them down. Four such wolves set off to find Paradise, a mythical place they alone can find and enter with the help of a flower maiden named Cheza. Of course, the wolves aren't the only ones looking for Paradise...

What Makes Warg Squee: Yeah, you can pretty well sum up the four leads with Runt, Porky, Punk, and Crazy Hero Boy, but by Tsume's tight pants, tell me you don't love 'em anyway. And then there is Quent. Just less than three. The supporting cast, world, and plot are great, and you just don't want it to end. Part of it is because of the infamous ending and recap episodes, but it's a pretty, well-written story with awesome music from Yoko Kanno. The manga is a quick two-volume read, with a fluffy gecko ending. Wish it was longer, but it's a decent intro into the anime. (It also makes Toboe a pimp.)

Anime: Samurai Champloo

Summary: Jin, a quiet, stoic ronin, and Mugen, a wild firecracker of a pirate, find themselves in debt to a young waitress when she saves their lives. Fuu leaves her hometown on a search for a samurai who smells of sunflowers, dragging her two reluctant bodyguards in her wake through a hip-hop reinterpretation of Edo-period Japan.

What Makes Warg Squee: Breakdance-fighting, beat-boxing samurai, epic graffiti wars, a pitcher who makes Alice Cullen look graceful and restrained, Jin in drag, and just wait until you meet Issac. Oh, and the zombies. Yeah, this series is made of awesome, epic crack. I've seen a tin-hat theory describing this series as "Radical Edward GMing a samurai-themed session for the Bebop crew," and it's honestly not way too far off the mark.

Perchance I'll do a few books next time, but it's already a pretty long post.

12/29/2010 . Edited 12/29/2010 #54

Sorry, html is being a pain... :(

12/29/2010 . Edited 12/29/2010 #55
Cha's Aegis

Yay! I was hoping someone would post here again! Thanks Wargish! ^_^ And yes, the html is a pain in the tukus at times.

12/29/2010 #56

I'm glad to see some recs for good series! :)

12/29/2010 #57

Anime: Hetalia: Axis Powers (watch before Hetalia: World Series)

Summary: Countries portrayed as people and they play out a spin on what happens throughout the world history. (ex: WW 2)

Why its good: Its funny and the episodes aren't that long so you can watch a whole season in about an hour and a half. (No kidding, we did this during our Anime and Manga Club.) It also teaches you more history about the world and has helped me with studying for history class. (Not recommended though.)

Taiwanese Drama: Mars

Summary: Psychology, romance, and mystery all rolled into one. Its basically about a guy and a girl. The girl is shy and the guy is a player, its about their changing relationship and the discoveries they make about each others pasts. It sounds like the same old plot line, but its really good and has unique twists. Its based off the series Mars as the manga.

Why: Because it is good and has a good blend of the three genres mentioned above. Also, it is just in general really good and keeps me hooked. Each episode is broken into four/five parts. Also, don't watch on youtube as youtube does not have all the episodes. I'll attempt to find the site I had before and link it to you if you are interested and can't find a good site. Also, the whole thing is subbed in English. There is no dubbed version available anywhere.

1/8/2011 #58
Dr Facer

Anime: Wicked City trailer

Summary: Anime movie that deals with a conflict between the human, or Light world and the demon, or Dark World. A truce between both worlds is in danger, and in order to prevent things to escalate to a full war, two agents, one from the Light world and one from the Dark world must work together to protect the life of the one man who can make the truce a reality from a radical demon group that will stop at nothing to start a war between worlds.

Personal thoughts: First things first, this movie is not for the kids. It is full of sex, gore and ultra violence. It is far more extreme than Ninja Scroll in that regard. Still, it is also one of the best movies you can watch; I particularly love the dark story, as it reminds me a lot of something H.P. Lovecraft would write. If you're old enough to watch it, definitively do so, it is worth every second.

Anime: Perfect Blue trailer

Summary: Thriller about a series of violent, bloody murders revolving around the life of an up and coming young actress. Who is responsible for all the killing? Is it her former manager? One of her fans? Her two partners from her days as a pop idol? Her photographer? Or is it the young actress herself, who has lost her mind? And what does the internet have to do with it all? To find the answer you will need to watch this anime movie, and trust me, it won't dissapoint you.

Personal thoughts: Perfect Blue is what I call a masterpiece of mood and suspense. Few movies can claim to be as good in those departments as this one is. It reminds me a lot of Suspiria (a fantastic Italian Giallo film) minus the supernatural side. The way the story develops in Perfect Blue until it reaches its climax is superb, and if you like this type of movies you really need to watch it. One word of advice: Watch it in Japanese with subtitles, because the dub absolutely sucks.

1/9/2011 #59

Time to revive a dead thread ;)

Anime: Ghost in the Shell: Stand alone Complex Opening

Summary: From ANN "In the future, life between the digital and physical world has been blurred. The boundary of technology and humanity has been stretched beyond imagination with lives being led in both the electronic and physical worlds. With the melding of man and machine – a new cybernetic level of existence is being created - An existence that continues to redefine mankind."

Why it's worth watching: This is another of the "big boys" and is a real thinking person's anime. Trust me, you'll be slightly confused when you first start watching it but by the end the gaps are all filled. Very deep characters, great action, the odd bit of mecha and the aforementioned story make it a definitely must see for all anime fans. A note that it can get a tad dark at times so if M rated stuff is taboo for you then you might have to skip this till you're ready.

Anime: After War Gundam X Opening

Summary: From ANN "When one space colony declared its independence from United Nations Earth, the devastating 7th Space War, an all-out war between Earth and space, resulted. The UNE responded to the Space Revolutionary Army with mobile suits, called Gundams. However, the SRA forces played their trump card and dropped hundreds of space colonies onto the Earth, plunging the planet into a seven-year-long nuclear winter. The UNE collapsed, but the SRA was unable to invade the Earth in the aftermath of the colony drop. Fifteen years have passed. The year is now After War 0015, and a New UNE has sprung up on Earth to restore order. In space, the colonial leaders have been rebuilding their own forces as well. By chance, fifteen-year-old Garrod Ran has discovered an old UNE mobile suit, the Gundam X, and now he uses it to help out the Vulture ship Freeden in its struggle to keep the powers that be from repeating the mistakes of the past."

Why it's worth watching: Another of the AU (alternate universe) Gundam series this one has many of the things that made older fans fall in love with the original (and it's sequels) Gundam series. The story in itself is unique as it takes place after the world ends as opposed to the others where it's before or during. Plenty of gundam type action and characters that are likable (unlike those from SEED) make this one of the easy ones to watch. It is also nicknamed "The red headed step child of Gundam" because of it's distinction and urban legends within Gundam Lore.

Anime: Break Blade (aka Broken Blade) Opening

Summary: From ANN "The inhabitants of the continent of Cruzon are born with the ability to freely control quartz. Technology based on this power allows them to perform a great multitude of tasks such as shoot projectiles and pilot mobile suits (called Golems in this society). Rygart Arrow is an un-sorcerer, a rare individual who is unable to levitate even the smallest crystal. Living with his brother on a farm, he receives a letter from an old friend, Hodr, the current king. Close companion of the king and queen when they were students at Assam Military School, Arrow is informed that a war is about to occur. Hodr called him because an ancient type of Golem has been found in a mining shaft. No one has been able to move it and Queen Sigyn, an expert engineer, suspects that maybe an un-sorcerer might be the key to activate it."

Why it's worth watching: A series of 5 ova/movies, Break blade is a mecha series that fells much like Gundam and Escaflowne. Can't say much else without spoiling so just check it out if you're interested.

2/10/2011 #60
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