The last thing we watched, cartoon/animu edition

BrawlMan

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Just finished CP: Edgerunners. Master class anime right here! Trigger has just outdone themselves. Way to go guys and gals. Anyone that says they can't make a good anime don't know shit. Definitely gave me those old-school 80s/90s cyberpunk anime vibes with a new coat of paint. The dubbing is great too, and I have no idea what Korey from DT was talking about. Then again, he did not even give the dub much of a chance. High recommendations and I want the Blu Ray for this now!

Anyhoo I binged Cyberpunk: Edge runners this weekend. Not quite a "wow", but definitely a breath of fresh air to see anime written for adults.
It's big wow for me!

Its pretty much a must watch for anyone who misses the mangavision days of the cyberpunk anime heyday as well as any Cyberpunk 2077 fans. Its quite a shame how much better of a story this is than that the actual game. Worse it would have been a solid story for it with no changes. Makes me wonder if it has roots in the pre-keanu version of the game. Its same plot of the protagonist joining a cyberpunk gang, but with a much darker tone and a layered story where as the game was the typical bland heroes journey.
Agreed.
 
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Piscian

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Just finished CP: Edgerunners. Master class anime right here! Trigger has just outdone themselves. Way to go guys and gals. Anyone that says they can't make a good anime don't know shit. Definitely gave me those old-school 80s/90s cyberpunk anime vibes with a new coat of paint. The dubbing is great too, and I have no idea what Korey from DT was talking about. Then again, he did not even give the dub much of a chance. High recommendations and I want the Blu Ray for this now!


It's big wow for me!


Agreed.
I started out watching subbed, but gave up pretty quick, in fact eventually watching dubbed with subtitles. The dubbing is excellent and being cyberpunk it felt like theres simply too much going on to try to follow the dialog, action and all the chat windows, and stuff going on in the background.
 
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gorfias

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OK, I'm getting too old and sentimental for this stuff. The very opening of DC League of Super Pets had me vaklempt thinking Krypto looks like my live in daughter's dog only white rather than brown. So far this HBO-Max show is charming. But why is Superman's "S" surrounded by "Kingdom Come" black?

 

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I started out watching subbed, but gave up pretty quick, in fact eventually watching dubbed with subtitles. The dubbing is excellent and being cyberpunk it felt like theres simply too much going on to try to follow the dialog, action and all the chat windows, and stuff going on in the background.
That's the exact problem when watching it sub. There's so many details that you can miss that you miss out on other details and the action. Korey did not give it a chance because some of the hood slang, but it's not that big a deal. Plus, the slang that's used in the anime, is using the video game and I'm assuming tabletop RPG as well. So he definitely didn't give the job a fair shake. Sounds like he only listened to the first 15 minutes and then dropped it to subs afterward.
 
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Chimpzy

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Akudama Drive

After Cyberpunk Edgerunners pleasantly surprised us with the quality of its cyberpunk rags to riches crime drama slash tragic romance, I was commanded to find some more cyberpunk-y goodness. So I found this, tauted as one of the best anime of 2020. Some amusing but superficial similarities to Edgerunners aside tho, it's quite a different beast, being more akin to a Suicide Squad story about an ordinary person getting caught up with a group of violent criminals, at first pretending to be one of them, tho gradually more or less becoming the mask, and eventually meeting their tragic end, sacrificing themselves for a loved one who was once a child experiment and who dreamt of escaping to the moon (like I said, amusing similarity). Promising, right?

Well, it's pretty decent. Animation is quite nice with some cool fight choreography. Pacing is fine, not too slow, not too fast. Doesn't overstay its welcome. Writing is ok, if probably a little trope-y. A bit stock. For example, the brawler is the hotblooded type always looking for strong opponents to fight, the hacker is always bored and looking for something that challenges his skills, the courier a stoic "will take any job if it pays, and finish it no matter what" type. See what I mean with a bit stock? And for the most part, that's really all they have going for them. That said, they are likeable, or at least the ones who are supposed to be, and they are the ones who get the most engaging arcs. As for the soundtrack, I barely noticed it. Gets absolutely roflstomped by Akira Yamaoka.

And I'm now thinking I'm kind of selling it short. I gues I am. It's a perfectly fine show, worthwhile watching. It's just that we watched Akudama Drive not long after a cyberpunk show that kind of does everything it does, but just better. If it weren't for that, I'd probably hold this in higher regard.

But since there is demand for more, I'm thinking it's time to put aside the bite sized snacks, and commit to a more filling main course. We gonna SAC.
 
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meiam

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Akudama Drive

After Cyberpunk Edgerunners pleasantly surprised us with the quality of its cyberpunk rags to riches crime drama slash tragic romance, I was commanded to find some more cyberpunk-y goodness. So I found this, tauted as one of the best anime of 2020. Some amusing but superficial similarities to Edgerunners aside tho, it's quite a different beast, being more akin to a Suicide Squad story about an ordinary person getting caught up with a group of violent criminals, at first pretending to be one of them, tho gradually more or less becoming the mask, and eventually meeting their tragic end, sacrificing themselves for a loved one who was once a child experiment and who dreamt of escaping to the moon (like I said, amusing similarity). Promising, right?

Well, it's pretty decent. Animation is quite nice with some cool fight choreography. Pacing is fine, not too slow, not too fast. Doesn't overstay its welcome. Writing is ok, if probably a little trope-y. A bit stock. For example, the brawler is the hotblooded type always looking for strong opponents to fight, the hacker is always bored and looking for something that challenges his skills, the courier a stoic "will take any job if it pays, and finish it no matter what" type. See what I mean with a bit stock? And for the most part, that's really all they have going for them. That said, they are likeable, or at least the ones who are supposed to be, and they are the ones who get the most engaging arcs. As for the soundtrack, I barely noticed it. Gets absolutely roflstomped by Akira Yamaoka.

And I'm now thinking I'm kind of selling it short. I gues I am. It's a perfectly fine show, worthwhile watching. It's just that we watched Akudama Drive not long after a cyberpunk show that kind of does everything it does, but just better. If it weren't for that, I'd probably hold this in higher regard.

But since there is demand for more, I'm thinking it's time to put aside the bite sized snacks, and commit to a more filling main course. We gonna SAC.
I really liked the first half of akumadan drive where it was just brainless fun, but the second half where it tries to be serious did not work at all for me and I dropped it.

I tried to think of another cyberpunk anime, but there aren't that many that are worth watching. Like there was a 3DCG anime bladerunner not long ago (with actually very nice CG) and it was so boring, imagine edgerunner starring Lucy and without any energy. There some older stuff like ergo proxy, which are fine but unremarkable. Maybe serial experiement lain if you consider that cyberpunk, but very different.

Movee wise its better, there's metropolis, which is just a visual feast (with a sorta uninteresting story) and Akira which is Akira.

Shame they never did a good applessed adaptation.
 

Chimpzy

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I really liked the first half of akumadan drive where it was just brainless fun, but the second half where it tries to be serious did not work at all for me and I dropped it.
Yeah, agreed, it kind of drops off near the end.
I tried to think of another cyberpunk anime, but there aren't that many that are worth watching. Like there was a 3DCG anime bladerunner not long ago (with actually very nice CG) and it was so boring, imagine edgerunner starring Lucy and without any energy. There some older stuff like ergo proxy, which are fine but unremarkable. Maybe serial experiement lain if you consider that cyberpunk, but very different.

Movee wise its better, there's metropolis, which is just a visual feast (with a sorta uninteresting story) and Akira which is Akira.

Shame they never did a good applessed adaptation.
Aside from your mentions, I suppose there's always the option of going old school i.e. Bubblegum Crisis and associated stuff, tho I hear the Tokyio 2040 series is supposedly better than the ovas. And as bonus, it's one of the things that inspired Mike Pondsmith when he created the Cyberpunk p&p rpg, so that at least might make for an interesting watch. Maybe Texnolyze, but I remember that being very dark and violent, but in a sort of unpleasantly miserable and mean-spirited way. Maybe Real Drive, tho I know nothing about that.
 
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TheMysteriousGX

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The Tokyo Project/Tokyo Vice is an older OVA with cyberpunk themes. I mean, technically it's mecha instead of cyber, but themes.

Honestly average but I had fun with it. Worth it if you can find the USA dub on YouTube or something, main guy sounds like he's on valium
 
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Gordon_4

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Yeah, agreed, it kind of drops off near the end.Aside from your mentions, I suppose there's always the option of going old school i.e. Bubblegum Crisis and associated stuff, tho I hear the Tokyio 2040 series is supposedly better than the ovas. And as bonus, it's one of the things that inspired Mike Pondsmith when he created the Cyberpunk p&p rpg, so that at least might make for an interesting watch. Maybe Texnolyze, but I remember that being very dark and violent, but in a sort of unpleasantly miserable and mean-spirited way. Maybe Real Drive, tho I know nothing about that.
Yeah anyone that told you Tokyo 2040 was better than OG Bubblegum Crisis except in perhaps one specific way is not someone who’s opinion I’d rate terribly highly. It is by no means a bad anime; and that one specific way it is better is that all the Knight Sabers and Maki are better realised as characters, especially Lina and Nene.

But the original really does have a big neon sign over it saying “Mike Pondsmith LOVED ME” with all its visuals, and bugger me if the music is not amazing.

Watch them both but don’t bother with Bubblegum Crash or AD Police unless you’re really hard up for more cyberpunk anime.
 

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Same thoughts about Edgerunners. It's hardly the next Arcane like I've heard it described, but still a great anime. Gives me an itch to play the game, but that won't happen for a year or more at least lol.
 

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Akudama Drive

After Cyberpunk Edgerunners pleasantly surprised us with the quality of its cyberpunk rags to riches crime drama slash tragic romance, I was commanded to find some more cyberpunk-y goodness. So I found this, tauted as one of the best anime of 2020. Some amusing but superficial similarities to Edgerunners aside tho, it's quite a different beast, being more akin to a Suicide Squad story about an ordinary person getting caught up with a group of violent criminals, at first pretending to be one of them, tho gradually more or less becoming the mask, and eventually meeting their tragic end, sacrificing themselves for a loved one who was once a child experiment and who dreamt of escaping to the moon (like I said, amusing similarity). Promising, right?

Well, it's pretty decent. Animation is quite nice with some cool fight choreography. Pacing is fine, not too slow, not too fast. Doesn't overstay its welcome. Writing is ok, if probably a little trope-y. A bit stock. For example, the brawler is the hotblooded type always looking for strong opponents to fight, the hacker is always bored and looking for something that challenges his skills, the courier a stoic "will take any job if it pays, and finish it no matter what" type. See what I mean with a bit stock? And for the most part, that's really all they have going for them. That said, they are likeable, or at least the ones who are supposed to be, and they are the ones who get the most engaging arcs. As for the soundtrack, I barely noticed it. Gets absolutely roflstomped by Akira Yamaoka.

And I'm now thinking I'm kind of selling it short. I gues I am. It's a perfectly fine show, worthwhile watching. It's just that we watched Akudama Drive not long after a cyberpunk show that kind of does everything it does, but just better. If it weren't for that, I'd probably hold this in higher regard.

But since there is demand for more, I'm thinking it's time to put aside the bite sized snacks, and commit to a more filling main course. We gonna SAC.
I watched the first episode and thought it was kind of cringe and I didn't find any of the characters interesting. Does it get better or is it "what you see is what you get" and if you don't like what it's selling immediately there's nothing that's going to change?
 

Chimpzy

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I watched the first episode and thought it was kind of cringe and I didn't find any of the characters interesting. Does it get better or is it "what you see is what you get" and if you don't like what it's selling immediately there's nothing that's going to change?
Maybe if you like heists/suicide missions, Suicide Squad style. Tho if you value character development, perhaps just skip it, because most of the cast doesn't really get any, and the ones that do only really get it past the halfway point.
 

Bob_McMillan

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Tried getting into Dorohedoro, but the slow burn and animation just wasn't for me.
 

TheMysteriousGX

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I shudder to think what you'd call a fast paced anime.

Anyway, watched about 14 episodes of Ranking of Kings. Big JoJo style "here's a wacky new thing, no we won't be elaborating" energy, but there's also...zero consequences so far? It's like there's a pathological need for nothing bad to happen to anybody long term. It's honestly hilarious just how far it goes to prevent anybody dying or getting permanently injured, which I don't think works for the level of violence it goes for.
 

Chimpzy

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Chimpzy watches Ghost in the Shell - Stand Alone Complex (Part 1)

Season 1, Episode 1: Section 9

It’s been some 15 years since I last watched it, but the moment the OP and Inner Universe started, I just felt a wave of nostalgia wash over me. Hearing it, you just know this show is something different. What I didn’t quite remember is the CGI in the opening. It, eh, doesn’t hold up well. Anyway, we start the episode proper in media res with the Major kicking some dude’s ass in that leotard, jacket and thigh-high stockings combo. Man, I’d forgotten how dumb her outfit is in the first season. Not that it’s so much better in the second, and I know it’s a nod to the manga, but still, it just looks dumb imo. Animation is pretty solid, as expected of Production IG. Not the most dynamic, and obviously not up to par with the 1995 movie, but quite high standard for an early 00’s animated series, and with some nice attention to details. The cgi vehicles stand out quite a bit tho. Not bothersome, just noticeable.

After some of the interdepartmental bureaucracy and political maneuvering, we quickly move on to what is arguably the real opener: the geisha house vip hostage situation and subsequent chase. It is a fun scene, not the most sophisticated perhaps, but it gets the job done, showing without exposition what Section 9 is and does, and offering some brief first glimpses into the main cast's roles and personalities. It also presents the setting as one that’s high tech, where robots exist and most people have at least some cybernetics, allowing them to be surveilled and hacked. GitS is often called cyberpunk, but I disagree. Or rather, if it is cyberpunk, it’s a more grounded, more realistic take than the dystopian crapsack worlds of your Bladerunners or the Cyberpunk rpg. I wouldn’t call the 2030s version of Japan utopic, but it comes across clean, stable, relatively prosperous and overall a mostly pleasant place to live for the average civilian. At least not much worse than current day, just with more tech, tho it might only appear that way because real life has slowly started resembling it somewhat.

Back to the plot. After the hostage situation is resolved, we learn there is more to the hostage situation, since one of the VIPs was under investigation, and the undercover agent doing the investigation was conveniently one of the fatalities. Bit sus, as the young’uns would say. Long story short, it turns out there was a bit of bait and switch involving brain swapping, something the Section 9 cyborgs missed, but the almost fully flesh and blood member Togusa picked up on when he went to do some actual physical detective work. Iirc, it won’t be the first time Togusa’s more human perspective will play an important role. But, one airport stand-off later, an international terrorist is prevented from absconding with some sensitive documents, and all is well.

And thus closes the first episode. It’s not really a great episode, and iirc is stand-alone (sic) with no bearing on the rest of the season, but it’s nicely paced, sets up the world and protagonists well enough, and most importantly, got enough of my attention to want to continue watching it. It would’ve been nicer if it tied more into the greater themes that run throughout the show, but I can understand it had other priorities.

I said I was gonna watch all of SAC again, and by golly, I’m doing it, and I’m planning on writing something like this for every episode. Both seasons, obviously, and probably Solid State Society too (but not SAC_2045). Before anyone asks, I don’t plan on doing the original manga or the Mamoru Oshii movies, tho I’ll probably reference them, nor will I do the Arise ova series.
 
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Gordon_4

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Animation is pretty solid, as expected of Production IG. Not the most dynamic, and obviously not up to par with the 1995 movie, but quite high standard for an early 00’s animated series
I'll be perfectly honest, I haven't seen many anime series before or after Ghost in the Shell SAC that look as good as it does, especially after 20 years have passed. And I think Aramaki might be my favourite 'old bastard' in anime and while I'm sure he's like many gruff but fair administrators in such roles, it would not shock me in the slightest if Masamune Shirow had seen a few episodes of The Professionals.
 
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Chimpzy

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I'll be perfectly honest, I haven't seen many anime series before or after Ghost in the Shell SAC that look as good as it does, especially after 20 years have passed. And I think Aramaki might be my favourite 'old bastard' in anime and while I'm sure he's like many gruff but fair administrators in such roles, it would not shock me in the slightest if Masamune Shirow had seen a few episodes of The Professionals.
It helps that, while it is imo pretty obvously from an older pre-HD era of animation (you can see it in the coloring and backgrounds), it has a pseudo-realistic aesthetic that is just stylized enough, but not so much that you can date it to a specific decade, like how you can often tell whether an anime is from the 80's, 90's or 00's. You could conceivably release it today.
 
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