Twelve Days of Anime – Kamigami Transformations


Fairly self explanatory really, I mean, just look at them?

Twelve Days of Anime – Old Man Jojo


I am not the biggest fan of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventures, while I enjoy the manga; there was something about the anime that just didn’t quite click with me, regardless of how much fun it could be to watch. But then Stardust Crusaders came along with what has to be one of the most boring characters I’ve seen in anime in a while. Many of the elements introuduced in Stardust Crusaders such as Stands helped to add more depth to the characters and story. But, Joutaro helped to spoil some of that fun – he is a boring character who spends more time sulking than doing anything particularly useful.

Joseph Joestar

Joseph Joestar on the other hand stole the show from Joutaro, adding a mix of the absurd and ridiculous to the fairly normal, if a little silly Jojo antics. Without Joseph I wouldn’t have got as far as I did with Stardust Crusaders, he is the true Jojo star and Joutaro should’ve been kept in prison for the whole series.

Twelve Days of Anime – Hozuki no Reitetsu


Who knew that hell was actually a fully functioning Japanese company, complete with ineffectual boss, and senior management that keeps everything running? Hozuki no Reitetsu was both fascinating, but infuriating to write about, I attempted on a couple of occasions, but those posts remain unfinished in a folder on my computer.

Hozuki no Reitetsu

What is so fascinating about Hoozuki no Reitetsu is how well it presents hell as merely a series of districts to be watched over with proper administration and the correct understanding of paperwork. With seven divisions and 272 subdivisions we are left with the impression that while terrible tortures happen throughout, the whole thing would collapse without a clever mind at work, making sure the right sort of people are hired to ease a particular departments short fall in staff and production. Hell is basically a government department, with the Great King Yama as more of a harassed manger with too much work than a deity with the power to destroy all who oppose him. This is particularly important because in Buddhist mythology, Yama is a dharmapala (wrathful god) said to judge the dead and preside over Narakas (‘hells’, or ‘purgatories’ and the cycle of birth. Hoozuki would be the judge who accompanies Yama (or in this case Enma as he is known in Japan) who carries a brush and book listing every soul and the allotted death date for every life.

What Hoozuki no Reitetsu does so brilliantly is turn this aspect of the mythology surrounding these characters into the workings of a government institution, with Yama as a harassed manager and Hoozuki as the conscientious and above all efficient bureaucrat. His dismissal of Shangri-la for example suggests that far from paradise, it is merely another department that doesn’t want to deal with its own problems and constantly tries to push them onto someone else. Shangri-la is another simply more paperwork for Hoozuki, with other issues down the line, and probably an awful lot of complaining and insisting that he deal with their problems. Indeed, as we follow Hoozuki you get the impression that he gets more annoyed when characters like Momotaro – the character from an Edo period story – give him more work to do when he is already trying to deal with a staff short fall, and problems with various divisions budgets. He even uses the encounter to solve the staff short fall, although appears to be annoyed that an iron maiden was installed without first consulting him about the cost and whether their budget can allow it.

 

Hozuki no Reitetsu’s humour is both dry and dark, the characters are entertaining in their own special way, and the opening was also fun to watch.

Twelve Days of Anime – Witch Craft Works Ending


There is so much that can be said about Witch Craft Works – that its one of my favourite anime this year, that it neatly reverses the roles of damsel in distress and night in shining armour, and even has some of the most colourful, and entertaining adversaries ive seen in anime in ages. But really, the only thing that needs to be said at the moment is about the ending.

Witch Craft Works

It’s a real earworm, one of those endings that just stick with you. I also love its use of the numerous torture devices and methods that were forced onto those suspected of witchcraft during the middle ages. I know they were truly horrible, and yet in this ending they are simply cute and add to the flavour of the whole series.

Twelve Days of Anime – Mikakunin de Shinkoukei


It’s that time of the year when anime bloggers write about twelve moments in anime that were memorable during the year. And, despite not blogging much for a variety of reasons I’ve decided to take part.

Mikakunin de Shinkoukei

We start off with Mikakunin de Shinkoukei, a series that I initially dismissed as fluff. After the first episode didn’t really engage me I was ready to drop this series, and said as much on twitter, however, for reasons that remain a mystery to me even now I continued with it, and thank god I did. On the surface this series bares all the hallmarks of fluffy romance with shades of a shoujo story thrown in for good measure. We have a sixteen year old suddenly discover that for a number of reasons she is in an arranged marriage with a quiet, and quite mysterious boy called Hakuya who is from the country. Based on this description I initially thought that we were going to have some shoujo fluff, perhaps entertaining, but also leading to the sort of melodrama that these romantic series tend to produce.

However, while there are elements of drama, the true heart of the show centered on the brilliant relationship between our central characters, the sisters Kobeni and Benio, along with Hakuya’s sister Mashiro. The comedy that their interactions produced was wonderful and hilarious to watch, especially Benio, the perfect older sister with a massive sister complex and an obsession with Mashiro. The story may have been fairly inconsequential, but the main casts interactions and all the whacky antics that they get up to made this series a truly enjoyable one to watch. So, it went from a series that I was initially willing to drop after episode one, to a series that became one I looked forward to watching each week.

Twelve Days of anime 2013 – Megumi the sarcastic and cynical


Servant x Service 5

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Twelve Days of Anime 2013 – The brilliance of Maou-san and his bid to take over the world one MgRonalds at a time


Hataraku Maou-sama

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