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Anime

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Gantz was one of the most effed up ones I ever saw. I actually thought it had the potential to get really good but I remember hearing that the anime got cancelled before it could tell the full manga story, so the ending was awful.

Also Paranoia Agent was really strange, too. Shooooonen Baaatuna!

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Paranoia Agent was awesome, though. It's literally about how moe is rotting Japanese culture from within. (Okay, it's more like how moe is a symptom of that, not a cause, but still.) It's trippy as balls, but there is actual meaning behind the craziness, unlike a lot of trippy-for-trippiness's-sake anime.

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Paranoia Agent was awesome, though. It's literally about how moe is rotting Japanese culture from within. (Okay, it's more like how moe is a symptom of that, not a cause, but still.) It's trippy as balls, but there is actual meaning behind the craziness, unlike a lot of trippy-for-trippiness's-sake anime.

See, yeah, I'm not in touch enough with Japanese culture to even know what Moe was, except that I have an uncle named Moe and I was pretty certain he wasn't ruining Japan. I think he has the potential to ruin Japan, but right now he lives too far away. I had to look it up.

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K.B., I thought Boku no Pico was pretty reprehensible, but I think it might be up your alley. Want me to send you a link?

I would have liked Paranoia Agent more if half-way through Satoshi Kon completely dropped every single pretense of plot progression, making the whole thing collapse into non-sequitir until the last episode, and by then it was too late. It spent six episodes building up this complex, engaging psycho-drama, only for what I assume to be Kon writing himself into a corner, not know how to continue the plot for six more episodes, and then piddling around for the rest of the series. It was extremely disappointing, because everything about the show up to the halfway point was high-quality, top-notch stuff. With Kon, it's best to just stick to his film oeuvre.

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Boku no Pico

And here I thought we had an understanding.

Also, no.

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And here I thought we had an understanding.

wink-happy-13.jpg

Trust me; I think it's awful!

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I would have liked Paranoia Agent more if half-way through Satoshi Kon completely dropped every single pretense of plot progression

Eh, it wasn't a plot-driven series. It was a character study; that's why there's a new focus character every episode. The later stuff is more abstract and not as strong as the initial few episodes, but ultimately, Paranoia Agent isn't about "what these people do", it's about "who these people are".

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I don't disagree, but the first six episodes meticulously connect everything together, have the characters be involved in each others' lives, like it is really going to go somewhere with the idea, and then forgets about it.

The latter standalone episodes are really good by themselves, but I still felt left down when I watched it.

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I've been watching Attack on Titan because of all the praise it's been getting on Kotaku, and I've gotta say I feel like it's totally founded. Very exciting, very action-y, and very well drawn. I love what I've seen so far.

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I find Attack on Titan to be kind of overhyped. But I will give massive props for its amazing production values.

The plot and the world its based on are fascinating, but the characters themselves, to me, are something left to be desired.

But that's merely going by the manga that I have recently dropped, I have only seen the first episode of the anime adaptation....

But perhaps my expectations have been set too high since I have also gotten to read one the most engrossing mangas I have ever laid eyes on.

Of which I am referring to, of course, is Berserk.

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Yeah, I really have to look into Berserk actually, I've never even heard anything negative about it. However, I really felt that AOT was just cool as hell. I can see what you mean about the sort of flat character design. I don't think that they're horrible or anything, and I guess I was waiting for more development since I've only been watching the anime, but I felt like everything else in the show made up for that and more.

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I wouldn't get into the Berserk anime, though. From what I hear it does not match the quality of the manga. But I haven't seen it to give a proper opinion of it.

Try the movies instead, which are of higher quality with mixed reviews. There is also a Blu-ray of the first movie in English, with the second dub being released in August. But again, I have yet to see it for myself to give a critique.

If you're gonna read the manga however, be forwarned; It can destroy you.

Not to mention it's rarely updated anymore, which is a damned pain trying to read at its current point.

Edit: As far as AOT, goes. I am just gonna say that later it seems to follow a certain flow that I find in the Shonen genre that simply turns me off a bit from it.

Edited by Firebird

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Noted. I am more of an anime person myself, but I might give the manga a whirl. But what do you mean it can destroy you?

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I am not gonna divulge much, but there quite a lot of detailed gore, as well as sex and rape within the story. So it's not exactly for the faint of heart.

But even if you're used to that kind of thing in anime/manga, like I am. The author still knows how to make you feel horrible about it.

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So Firebird, I've take it you've seen M.D. Geist and Genocyber!

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So Firebird, I've take it you've seen M.D. Geist and Genocyber!

Now THOSE shows really pulled out the stops.

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I just watched Howl's Moving Castle and Princess Mononoke.

Loved both of 'em, even though Howl's Moving Castle has a fairly shit plot. Also, I lol'd at how Christian Bale did the gruff Batman voice in this movie too.

Princess Mononoke was epic, even though the violence was a little absurd and hearing the voice of Spawn coming from the leader of the Boars was fucking hilarious/awesome. It's like if Pumbaa had Spawn's voice.

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I find Attack on Titan to be kind of overhyped. But I will give massive props for its amazing production values.

The plot and the world its based on are fascinating, but the characters themselves, to me, are something left to be desired.

It's not particularly character-driven, but I do think they do a decent job focusing on more than a few individuals besides the primaries; specifically, a lot of the internal thought processes that are depicted remind me of the types of leadership crises on Battlestar Galactica. There's a lot of emphasis given to individual reactions and psychology during the very heat of each battle/situation... some folks might criticize that as being "emo" or whatever, but it's completely warranted & feels authentic when you consider the situation.

I'm personally loving the show so far; it's VERY moment-to-moment, such that the logistics of the battles are actually part of the plot, the shell-shocked hopelessness that the soldiers face seems plausible & genuine, and there's something quite disturbing about giant humanoids eating people - far more disturbing than monsters, robots, etc.

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Well, damn. That took longer to write than I thought it would. Note to self: write your reviews sometime sooner than 7 months after you've finished the material in question.

Visual novel this time around. Perhaps a bit shorter than usual for this review, or maybe at least not as focused, but like I said above... it's been a while since I read it. Figured I should write this before I completely forget everything.

By the way, the PC version of this visual novel is completely free. Legitimately, I mean. You can download it here.

----------

True Remembrance

Year: 2006

Developer: Shiba Satomi

Genre: Drama, Romance

DDJKZJi.png

Synopsis

Some time in the future, a pandemic of depression has struck the world. Known as the Dolar, its only known treatment is memory erasure. Enter the Mnemonicides, highly-specialized doctors with powers capable of eliminating memories from a person. One such Mnemonicide, who goes by the alias 'Blackiris', has just been tasked with treating the Dolar in a young woman who is simply named La. As he gets to know La in order to properly provide treatment, it seems odd to him how little she speaks to him about getting cured.

Writeup

As True Remembrance opens, we’re immediately greeted with the rather cynical narration of one of the main characters, Blackiris. Not too strange an opening for a story, and neither is the fact that he very quickly comes upon the second main character of this story, La. Coupled with the tone of the opening movie that plays immediately after, we’re given a sense that this story is going to be quite a romance drama. We’d be wrong. It is a drama, for sure, and there is romance, but to call it a romance drama is selling it a bit short. And a bit wrong.

For the most part, the story follows the perspective of these two characters as they go about their lives together as Guide and Guest – doctor and patient, in other words. There’s a lot of really simple, day-to-day action that’s described along the way, giving it a slight feel of slice-of-life. Little details, from braiding hair to just grinding coffee, are given attention enough to bring out the personalities of the people doing them, even if they’re only mentioned in passing. This is character-driven story by any measure, and it’s these details that really stick out and tell us the stories behind the plot.

The plot itself isn't slacking any, either. It doesn't really come into full force until a fair bit into the story, though; the beginning chapters are focused instead on providing insight into the workings of Mnemonicides alongside the character development. It’s this insight, though, that gives the plot its impact when it finally does drop on the reader. The shift in tone is well-executed, as are the big turns in the story. We’re given just enough information to provide tension as the hidden sides of the characters are driven into the open. And as far as the romance subplot goes, it comes to a head in the best way possible, tying itself together with a big plot point for a wonderful reveal.

Of course, the romance subplot is exactly that: a subplot. It’s not focused on much over most of the story, and if you took that away, very little would have to be changed to maintain the story’s effectiveness. While there were always little hints of romance from the beginning, it’s not hard to see the connection between the main characters as more platonic. It’s left ambiguous for quite a while so as to not distract from the real story. In that, it does very well.

It wouldn't do to ignore the shortcomings of True Remembrance, though. These mostly don’t come in the form of character or plot issues. It’s the artwork that, if you’re accustomed to the production values of a bigger visual novel company, might put you off. True Remembrance is a doujin visual novel, and while the artwork isn't really bad, it isn't really good, either. It does detract from the mood a little at times, but it thankfully doesn't get in the way most other times. This is for the original PC version, mind you; there is a Nintendo 3DS remake with much-improved artwork, if you so desire it. That all said, there’s something to be said for the original’s art: it has a very mellow feel to it, and that is what the tone of the story itself goes for. The remake’s art is much brighter and perhaps more generic, and having experienced the original art, it’s hard to imagine the brighter colors and new character designs working nearly as well.

Speaking of mellow, the soundtrack is excellent in that regard. Much of it is composed with a very music box flavor. It manages to evoke strong emotions where they’re needed, and a very laid back calmness elsewhere. Through the music, we’re able to connect to the characters even more. The few tracks that deviate from this trend are either quite bouncy or, in one specific case, threatening. Overall, this short soundtrack works exceptionally well at capturing the heart of this visual novel.

This heart, the essence of the story, touches upon some dark musings and conclusions. Its writing conveys feeling and information in what is sometimes a very subtle manner. Something that looks otherwise innocent can carry a fair bit of meaning behind it. Taken together, these bring out a not-insignificant feeling of warm familiarity with the sense of a shadow lurking just out of sight. It’s a somewhat unique feeling that doesn't come up too often in visual novels. It’s worth experiencing.

As far as visual novels go, True Remembrance is one of those that doesn't get a lot of attention. Whether this is due to its status as a doujin work or its lack of a truly pronounced story or audio-visual element that could set it apart, the fact remains that there’s a very good tale to be told here. It’s one of those visual novels that sticks with you. It’s not filled with action and it’s not a soppy drama. It’s simply a solid story of two individuals finding the strength to continue onward.

Ratings

Story – 8.2

Characters – 8.7

Writing – 8.5

Artwork – 5.5

Sound – 8.3

Overall – 8.0

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It's not particularly character-driven, but I do think they do a decent job focusing on more than a few individuals besides the primaries; specifically, a lot of the internal thought processes that are depicted remind me of the types of leadership crises on Battlestar Galactica. There's a lot of emphasis given to individual reactions and psychology during the very heat of each battle/situation... some folks might criticize that as being "emo" or whatever, but it's completely warranted & feels authentic when you consider the situation.

I'm personally loving the show so far; it's VERY moment-to-moment, such that the logistics of the battles are actually part of the plot, the shell-shocked hopelessness that the soldiers face seems plausible & genuine, and there's something quite disturbing about giant humanoids eating people - far more disturbing than monsters, robots, etc.

I agree. I actually really like the darkness of the plot. It feels very genuine as far as despair goes, and it makes me feel the paralyzing fear too. And as you say above, it's totally warranted and doesn't feel forced at all, but rather an inevitable reaction.

Did I mention I think the music for the anime is fantastic? No? I think it's fantastic.

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finally got to watching Attack on Titan

4 episodes in and I'm blown away by the sheer beauty of the artwork and animation quality

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so animecrazy just shut down

where do people stream? or get their shows in general

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I use nyaa because I hate streaming

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I agree. I actually really like the darkness of the plot. It feels very genuine as far as despair goes, and it makes me feel the paralyzing fear too. And as you say above, it's totally warranted and doesn't feel forced at all, but rather an inevitable reaction.

Did I mention I think the music for the anime is fantastic? No? I think it's fantastic.

I actually started watching Attack on Titan 'cause I saw freaking DJP give it some props, and am enjoying it a lot thus far. I'm just worried that at some point it's going to delve too far into anime tropes given the way one of the last episodes I saw played out.

I don't think it's too spoilery to say that I appreciated how they essentially went Full Metal Jacket with the juxtaposing of certain periods as well as the brutality of the characters' reality.

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