Rural Japan in Anime – Beautiful, Powerful, and the Root of Japanese Identity


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One aspect of anime that I find particularly interesting is the depiction, and use of the countryside. There are a number of series such as Durarara that focus exclusively on the big city, looking at under classes, dark dealings, and the more shadowy elements of society. But when a series is set in, or uses the countryside, we are often presented with a very different vision of Japan, especially if the series also focuses on school children (which a significant number of them do). Read more of this post

Moyashimon Returns – Deciding your own future


What makes Moyashimon such a fascinating anime to watch is the way with which it brings together numerous storytelling devices without letting any one of them overpower the others. The oddity that marks Moyashimon out from many other slice-of-life style series – Sawaki’s ability to see and communicate with microbes – is not essential to the series, although it does provide some interesting educational elements, along with certain comedic plot devices. Instead it is a series focussed entirely on the characters and how the cope with daily life at the Agricultural University. At the very centre of the story are questions about where these people belong and what they want to do with their lives. The main focus of Moyashimon Returns, at least in the last few episodes has been firmly on Haruka and her arranged marriage to a fat and entirely unlikable Ryuuta. Read more of this post