The last thing we watched, cartoon/animu edition

BrawlMan

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Ninja Kamui introduced CGI shenanigans and honestly my interest in the show has completely dropped. Really did feel like it came out of nowhere.
CG ain't that bad all things considered. The fight scenes are still well animated, and I'm still intrigued by the anime. I just like the fact that it's an old school nothing but action type of anime you would see in the late 80s and early to mid 90s. I can't wait for the next episode.
 

TheMysteriousGX

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Ninja Kamui introduced CGI shenanigans and honestly my interest in the show has completely dropped. Really did feel like it came out of nowhere.

In other news, without Frieren, Apothecary Diaries, and Dungeon Meshi, I have no anime left to watch. The drought begins.

For Western animation, I've caught up to Bad Batch. This season feels a lot tighter with significantly less filler and more interesting episodes, but it's still not "great".

Thinking I should start on either Invincible S2 Part 2 or that new X-men show.
Good news! Dungeon Meshi isn't going on hiatus between its first and second cours, Episode 13 comes out on Thursday like normal

EDIT: Huh, Twitter says episode 13 is the end of the first cour, and 14 is the beginning of the next cour (and has a new preview on youtube), but there still won't be a break and episode 14 is on April 4th
 
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TheMysteriousGX

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Speaking of, one of the bits I like about Delicious in Dungeon is it's subtlety. Like, after getting back to the surface, Namari goes to check the Temple to see if anybody's found Falin's body and returned it there, something the rest of the gang didn't check in their haste to get back into the dungeon.

The Temple, where they store resurrectable dead bodies, without resurrecting them until they get appropriately paid for it, because life is both cheap and somehow still expensive. This is not a "because videogame rules" situation, but is one of many data points showing how gold rushes in general and the dungeon in particular is warping people through simple greed and desire

Episodes 11 and 12 were amazing btw. Fantastic dragon rematch, best laid plans going awry with a wellwhatwereyouexpecting.png and an incredibly well-animated happy ending to a short but fantastic series

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Drathnoxis

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Finally finished Cardcaptor Sakura (well, I still have the second movie, but the series is done). It may have taken over a year, but I really enjoyed it. I don't know why I stopped watching it. The first half of the show is really light and fluffy and the second half is also mostly light and fluffy but with some really good emotional payoff. I cried at least twice. It may be partially nostalgia but I just think it's a solid show and I'm sad it's over, even with 70 episodes I feel like I want more. It may have been a bit predictable and formulaic at times, and it was a bit repetitive with certain aspects like with Toya wanting to tell Yukito a certain thing and that girl always just popping up to interfere, but on the whole it was a great show. The stakes were low, but the characters were fun and it was enjoyable to watch them develop. One thing, however is that a couple of the relationships are a little skeevy. One was the romance Sakura's brother had with his assistant teacher when he was in middle school. The other is the crush that one of Sakura's 5th grade classmates has on their teacher, I mean, it doesn't go anywhere but still, it gets a significant amount of focus.

The animation was pretty great on the whole and while other shows would use canned transformation scenes to pad runtime, Cardcaptor Sakura's are obviously redrawn every time because she's always wearing a different costume or outfit. There was a bit of unecessary use of flashbacks at times, however. Not too excessive, though. The music was nice, though they could have used a couple more tracks throughout the series. The first intro song was definitely my favorite out of the 3.

This is my third time watching the show. First was when I was a kid I would watch the butchered 4Kids Nelvana version whenever it was on TV and probably missed half the episodes. Second was when I was a teenager, I downloaded it (again the butchered 4Kids Nelvana dub) and watched it all the way through, and then watched the final episode in Japanese because it was included in the download, I guess because the show doesn't have an ending otherwise. This time I watched the Japanese original with subtitles and it's like a whole new show. Definitely the way I would recommend it to be watched. It's tragic the pale imitations of great anime that North American kids got.
 
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PsychedelicDiamond

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Frieren: Beyond Journey's End

Boy, do I have opinions on this one...

A recent critical darling, Frieren presents itself as sort of a character driven fantasy series. The show follows elven mage Frieren (all the characters and places in it are named after random German words. You get used to it but it never quite stops being distracting). Frieren was a member of a legendary group of heroes that slew an evil demon king and restored peace to the land. Being an elf, though, she lives much longer and ages much slower than her companions, so after most of those had passed away or grown elderly, she realizes that she has never found closure with them (Mainly with legendary hero Himmel, whom she had some unresolved romantic feelings for) and decides to retrace her old journey, at the end of which promises to be a mythical place where she will get commune with the souls of the dead to meet them one last time, taking along her apprentice Fern and young warrior Stark.

Frieren is a very frustrating watch. At its best, this show is quite beautiful, using the iconography of medieval fantasy to frame a journey about self discovery and coming to terms with loss, regret and the merciless passage of time, realized as a melancholy pilgrimage through autumnal forests and sleepy villages as the main characters learn to understand themselves and each other better. The problem is that this is really only about half of it.

Frieren's first and possibly greatest problem for me is the, frankly, bafflingly moronic decision to set it not in a naturalistic feeling fantasy setting, but this weird, semi-self aware DnD pastiche where people in this ostensibly serious, character driven fantasy series occasionally lapse into tabletop jargon, talking about their adventure parties, mana levels and character classes and whatnot. While some of the character interactions occasionally veer towards the goofy, this is what really takes me out of it more than anything else.

The other problem is that it has a bad tendency to abandon its own premise of introspective character study in favour of lukewarm and tropey action-adventure fare for long stretches at a time. Early on in the series there was a plotline about the heroes helping a town against a clique of evil demons and I started zoning out, hoping that this wouldn't be what if the rest of the season would be like. And to its credit, it wasn't. About two thirds through the season (which has 28 episodes overall, by the way) there started a plotline about Frieren and Fern having to participate in a series of tests to prove their aptitude as mages in competition with a quirky supporting cast of fellow wizards. And I started hoping this wouldn't be what the rest of the season would be like. But much to my chargrin, it was.

It's so heart breaking to see a show that regularly demonstrates how good it can be and then simply refuses to, about half of the time. One moment you're watching a series about coming to terms with the curse of a supernaturally long life and learning to cherish your memories while accepting their fleeting nature and the inevitability of loss and before you know it hits its heas and slips into some recurring dissassociative episode where it thinks it's DnD: Honour Among Thieves for a good part of its runtime. And all you can do is stand on the sidelines, asking "Are you okay there, buddy?"

Straight up, this was a painful watch, not because its bad. Even at its worst its still very well animated and well directed and has very solid characterization. But because for how long and how regularly it fails to be as good as it could be. A bit more than half of this is very good television I wouldn't hesitate a second to recommend. And a bit less than half of it is... whatever. Not bad, but uninteresting. Right now there's a lot of hype around, though if there's one thing I learned about anime criticism ever since I started half paying attention to it, it's that it has a near pathological case of recency bias where it regularly latches onto some recently released production to treat it as a future classic, only to forget about it soon after. And... I imagine this isn't gonna be the one to actually persist, unless later seasons learn to focus on its strengths more.
 
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meiam

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One thing, however is that a couple of the relationships are a little skeevy. One was the romance Sakura's brother had with his assistant teacher when he was in middle school. The other is the crush that one of Sakura's 5th grade classmates has on their teacher, I mean, it doesn't go anywhere but still, it gets a significant amount of focus.
Yeah Clamp seems to really like the teacher student relationship, iirc Sakura dad also started dating her mom when she was his student. Tellingly when they made the sequel all of Sakura friend go to the same high school, except for that one girl with the crush on her teacher, she just get sweept off to the side.
 
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BrawlMan

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A recent critical darling, Frieren presents itself as sort of a character driven fantasy series. The show follows elven mage Frieren (all the characters and places in it are named after random German words.
Nah, this a Tuesday for anime when it comes to that kind of name theming.

it, it's that it has a near pathological case of recency bias where it regularly latches onto some recently released production to treat it as a future classic, only to forget about it soon after. And... I imagine this isn't gonna be the one to actually persist, unless later seasons learn to focus on its strengths more.
I noticed that too back in the 2010s, and it's only gotten worse from since then. It's why I am never doing One Punch Man again nor returning where I last left off. I'm a guy who only watches what interests me.
 

PsychedelicDiamond

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Welcome to anime.
Eh. I've been watching Legend of the Galactic Heroes with my dad for a while and that show has great German names. "Reinhard von Lohengramm", "Siegfried Kircheis", "Wolfgang Mittermeyer", "Oskar von Reuenthal"... even to a native speaker, those go down like butter.

Granted, I'm fairly sure almost all of them are named after obscure historical figures, but still.
 
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Thaluikhain

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Right now there's a lot of hype around, though if there's one thing I learned about anime criticism ever since I started half paying attention to it, it's that it has a near pathological case of recency bias where it regularly latches onto some recently released production to treat it as a future classic, only to forget about it soon after. And... I imagine this isn't gonna be the one to actually persist, unless later seasons learn to focus on its strengths more.
Is anime worse than other things in that respect? It seems a common problem.
 
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BrawlMan

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Is anime worse than other things in that respect? It seems a common problem.
Not really, but I noticed anime fans or those on the grift/clickbait side of YouTube are really vocal about the next "your favorite anime (you didn't even know existed)!", or "future classic" like they know it's going to happen instantly. It's mostly them talking out of their asses, or expecting some next Renaissance out of nowhere.
 

Thaluikhain

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Not really, but I noticed anime fans or those on the grift/clickbait side of YouTube are really vocal about the next "your favorite anime (you didn't even know existed)!", or "future classic" like they know it's going to happen instantly. It's mostly them talking out of their asses, or expecting some next Renaissance out of nowhere.
Ah, ok, that makes sense. Well, sooner or later they are going to be correct, right?
 
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BrawlMan

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Ah, ok, that makes sense. Well, sooner or later they are going to be correct, right?
Not really. Most of the animated classics when they started in the 2010s or late 2000s either got forgotten about and left the anime site guys real quick, got canceled, or never finished due to unfortunate circumstances that vary.
 

Drathnoxis

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Yeah Clamp seems to really like the teacher student relationship, iirc Sakura dad also started dating her mom when she was his student. Tellingly when they made the sequel all of Sakura friend go to the same high school, except for that one girl with the crush on her teacher, she just get sweept off to the side.
Oh right, I forgot about the dad. I did not know there was a sequel. Hmm, don't think I'll watch it, I don't have much faith in a sequel written 16 years later keeping with the spirit of the original.
 

meiam

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Oh right, I forgot about the dad. I did not know there was a sequel. Hmm, don't think I'll watch it, I don't have much faith in a sequel written 16 years later keeping with the spirit of the original.
Its not terrible but its like the most boring filler episode on repeat.
 
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Gordon_4

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Finally finished Cardcaptor Sakura (well, I still have the second movie, but the series is done). It may have taken over a year, but I really enjoyed it. I don't know why I stopped watching it. The first half of the show is really light and fluffy and the second half is also mostly light and fluffy but with some really good emotional payoff. I cried at least twice. It may be partially nostalgia but I just think it's a solid show and I'm sad it's over, even with 70 episodes I feel like I want more. It may have been a bit predictable and formulaic at times, and it was a bit repetitive with certain aspects like with Toya wanting to tell Yukito a certain thing and that girl always just popping up to interfere, but on the whole it was a great show. The stakes were low, but the characters were fun and it was enjoyable to watch them develop. One thing, however is that a couple of the relationships are a little skeevy. One was the romance Sakura's brother had with his assistant teacher when he was in middle school. The other is the crush that one of Sakura's 5th grade classmates has on their teacher, I mean, it doesn't go anywhere but still, it gets a significant amount of focus.

The animation was pretty great on the whole and while other shows would use canned transformation scenes to pad runtime, Cardcaptor Sakura's are obviously redrawn every time because she's always wearing a different costume or outfit. There was a bit of unecessary use of flashbacks at times, however. Not too excessive, though. The music was nice, though they could have used a couple more tracks throughout the series. The first intro song was definitely my favorite out of the 3.

This is my third time watching the show. First was when I was a kid I would watch the butchered 4Kids version whenever it was on TV and probably missed half the episodes. Second was when I was a teenager, I downloaded it (again the butchered 4Kids dub) and watched it all the way through, and then watched the final episode in Japanese because it was included in the download, I guess because the show doesn't have an ending otherwise. This time I watched the Japanese original with subtitles and it's like a whole new show. Definitely the way I would recommend it to be watched. It's tragic the pale imitations of great anime that North American kids got.
I thought Nelvana did the Cardcaptors dub back in the day. Or were they and 4Kids a subsidiary of one another?
 
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Casual Shinji

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So I saw that Anissa was just introduced to the Invincible show. And if you know... YOU KNOW. How the showrunners are going to deal with that whole bag of cats will be interesting to see.