The last thing we watched, cartoon/animu edition

Casual Shinji

Should've gone before we left.
Legacy
Jul 18, 2009
19,753
4,527
118
And as ugly as Angstrom's death is... hasn't Mark already killed a bunch of stuff in battle? And while I understand his fear about becoming the same as his dad, the fear alone should be an indicator that he won't. Does anyone in the audience share the same anxiety as him? I'm sick of his grovelling. You fought a dude that maimed your mom, harmed your baby brother and was actively trying to kill you to the very end. You're morally in the clear. Get the fuck over it.
Yeah, considering the comic I don't see this going anywhere in the show moving forward. The looming threat of the viltramites hangs far heavier over Mark in the comic than him becoming his dad. I guess Season 2 felt the need to end with a reminder of the impactful ending of Season 1. And honestly at this point that whole moment is kinda overstaying its welcome and throwing a shadow over the rest of the story.
 

Satinavian

Elite Member
Legacy
Apr 30, 2016
1,748
684
118
Hm, man, all that sounds terrible. Short question: I didn't watch much anime (or anything) the last... decade or so. Anything to recommendate the last few years?
Well, i actually liked Frieren unlike some others. But super innovative and different it is not.
For example the whole Isekai - "i am now in a game or whatever" example: "Overlord", i think had a great core. The premise that you have "secret knowledge" and can apply your game tactics and your statistics, your unique perception and such while navigating a now political landscape as a "monster", while questioning what is real and what personhood means: Great idea. But we got big/small-boobed harem girls, asspull-powers, slow trodding plot, bullshit power fantasy. (I watched just a few episodes at the start, don't know what and if something changes)
So true. Most are just power fantasies and don't care much for world building or sensible plot. And the harems are annoying.
There are a couple that are closer to what you want (Ascendance of a bookworm, Grimgar of fantasy and ash, several others that only exist as light novel) but writing such is not exactly easy (Realist Hero fails horribly by trying to do political themes and just revealing that the author has no knowledge of it )
Eh, back to the question: Any recommendation for a good, short series/movie the last years which is without the usual shonen-anime shit tainting all the innovative crazy stuff?
Have you tried not doing Shonen ? While some Seinen are just more violent, others actually have more complex plots and themes. And there is Shoujo though that tends to have its own bundle of common themes (and tends to not be particualr complex) and , most important Josei which has a lot to offer in complex themes and stories and is most different from Shonen. But there are a lot of slice-of life shows in that category wgich you also don't seem to like ?

I want to watch something weird, inventive or thought-provoking again. Some nice meaningful action would be nice too.
Bookworm is a fun Isekai which takes its world seriously. But it has a bit slice of life flavor and not the hoghest animationbudget.
Eizoken is slightly weird and innovative. But it also has slice of life qualities and a lot of navel gazing
Ancient Magus Bride has weirdness and some inventiveness but has a somewhat questionable romance and the main character is a bit tropey.
Shadow House has also weirdness and while most ingredients are sommon, the show itself manages to feel a tad different.

But it is surprisingly hard to recommend stuff when i don't really know your taste all that well.
 

Bob_McMillan

Elite Member
Aug 28, 2014
5,218
1,892
118
Country
Philippines
Thanks to my girlfriend, I've watched a bunch of anime.

Yuri on Ice: Gay ice skating. Honestly given the extreme fondness my girlfriend and other female friends have for this show, I kind of expected it to be better. But I am familiar with the circumstances behind the show's production, and you can tell that they're just doing their best with a smaller budget. To the show's credit, it did make me more interested in the world of ice skating and did actually make me look up some real world ice skating. Like any good sports anime should.

A Sign of Affection: Deaf girl meets polyglot guy, romance ensues. I heard that this anime teaches you more about a deaf person's life, but not quite feeling it so far. It's got a great art style though.

Go Go Loser Ranger: The Boys, but Power Rangers. Only two episodes so far, but the show has a fun energy. I was never a big Power Rangers kid, but I watched enough to appreciate the premise.

It's quite nice how... alternative anime viewing sites have features that allow you to have watch parties with others. Sure beats just pressing play at the same time.
 
  • Like
Reactions: BrawlMan

meiam

Elite Member
Dec 9, 2010
3,409
1,705
118
Thanks to my girlfriend, I've watched a bunch of anime.

Yuri on Ice: Gay ice skating. Honestly given the extreme fondness my girlfriend and other female friends have for this show, I kind of expected it to be better. But I am familiar with the circumstances behind the show's production, and you can tell that they're just doing their best with a smaller budget. To the show's credit, it did make me more interested in the world of ice skating and did actually make me look up some real world ice skating. Like any good sports anime should.
Its a shame how much they overreached and tried to animate every character routine, it was really unnecessary and ended up creating some awkward moment, like when one of the character win his competition while having by far the worse animation for his routine.
 

Bob_McMillan

Elite Member
Aug 28, 2014
5,218
1,892
118
Country
Philippines
Its a shame how much they overreached and tried to animate every character routine, it was really unnecessary and ended up creating some awkward moment, like when one of the character win his competition while having by far the worse animation for his routine.
Yeah, especially when most of them repeat their performances. I mean I appreciate how they tried to get you to care about every single competitor ala Haikyuu, but maybe don't try to do that with only 12 episodes.
 

Worgen

Follower of the Glorious Sun Butt.
Legacy
Apr 1, 2009
14,552
3,494
118
Gender
Whatever, just wash your hands.
just remembered how long 10 years was. Keep Your Hands Off Eizoken is a brilliantly animated show about students making an animation.
They have it with English dubbing on amazon. I need to watch it with the dub since the subtitles make it hard to watch the lovely animation.
 
  • Like
Reactions: BrawlMan

Dalisclock

Making lemons combustible again
Legacy
Escapist +
Feb 9, 2008
11,275
7,064
118
A Barrel In the Marketplace
Country
Eagleland
Gender
Male
Finally gotten around to watching Hazbin Hotel. Overall like it and a number of the songs have been stuck in my head for a week now(Me listening to them on youtube doesn't help). I'm getting attached to the characters in general, though I feel like some of them are underultized. The Vees in particular are introduced early and mostly seem to drop out of sight after they get their big musical numbers, such as "Stayed Gone" for Vox and "Respectless" for Velvette, though Valentino keeps popping up probably because he's Angeldust's Boss and a fucking creep to boot. Vox I guess I understand because he quickly got his widescreen ass handed to him by Alastor without Alastor breaking a sweat but Velvette seems a lot smarter and dangerous and just stops really matters after she tells off the other overlords(and as far as I know they didn't have her whacked offscreen).

My big issues fall into 2 main categories:
-The tone in the early episodes is all over the damn place. The flow will be very Saturday morning cartoony with Sex jokes and swearing(like Sir Pentius and his steampunk blimp) but then the music will pop on and emotional moments hit. It evens out a lot around like episode 5 but that's half the runtime of the show. And then you have episode 4, which has a fucking sexual assault warning when it starts(there's a really good reason for that, btw). Suddenly all those sex jokes Angeldust keeps making feel a hell of a lot darker.
-It feels like the episodes are either too short or there aren't enough of them and early on it feels like the show is trying to juggle far too many things to make any of them pay off, though this gets better later on. The show will jump between stuff like the dead angel subplot, trying to make the whole hotel concept work, the worldbuilding that hell is run by backstabbing and competing overlords, developing the characters, charlies's relationship with her dad and her idealism and any number of other plots competing for the 23 min per episode runtime. There's also the whole moved up angelic purge(from a year to 6 months) that's there but suddenly there's a 5 month time skip that seems to have happened offscreen and only takes priority around episode 6 when they appeal to heaven that sinners can be redeemed with enough effort(which almost nobody in heaven wants to even hear).

Beyond that I generally enjoy it. The musical numbers are mostly awesome and there's some great talent there, I just wish the first few episodes didn't feel mostly devoid of real substance when the music wasn't playing.
 
  • Like
Reactions: BrawlMan

Bob_McMillan

Elite Member
Aug 28, 2014
5,218
1,892
118
Country
Philippines
Kaijuu No. 8 is really fun. Great animation, great voice acting. I tried reading the manga some time back, but don't really remember why I stopped.

My girlfriend asked me to watch Black Butler with her. I leave only this screenshot from Netflix as my review.
1713691286108.png
 

meiam

Elite Member
Dec 9, 2010
3,409
1,705
118
Kaijuu No. 8 is really fun. Great animation, great voice acting. I tried reading the manga some time back, but don't really remember why I stopped.
Just saw this for Kaiju 8

Its fun, but really "been there done that". I would have preferred if it focused on elements like the first part of ep1, running a society that's constantly under attack by monster. Wouldn't have to be just about cleaning up, it could also deal with how the government organize society (can't be easy to constantly rebuild all that infrastructure, how do they balance the book?). But as is, it seems like they had so little idea the first arc will literally be a tournament arc, /yawn
 

Dirty Hipsters

This is how we praise the sun!
Legacy
Feb 7, 2011
7,991
2,367
118
Country
'Merica
Gender
3 children in a trench coat
Finished Invincible Season 2. And everything is more or less as was after the midseason cliffhanger, which I thought was way more exciting. Nolan is still in prison, the invasion is still coming, Mark is still unable to fess up to Eve. They stopped the Martian invasion, except they didn't. They killed off a bunch of characters, except they didn't. Too much wheel spinning. The Boys all over. It gets to the point where maintaining status quo becomes untenable, so the writing has to bend over backwards to delay and distract what feels inevitable but never quite gets there.

And as ugly as Angstrom's death is... hasn't Mark already killed a bunch of stuff in battle? And while I understand his fear about becoming the same as his dad, the fear alone should be an indicator that he won't. Does anyone in the audience share the same anxiety as him? I'm sick of his grovelling. You fought a dude that maimed your mom, harmed your baby brother and was actively trying to kill you to the very end. You're morally in the clear. Get the fuck over it.
Yeah, this was kind of my response to the end of season 2. Like we waited an extra 6 months for this? Really?

The episodes weren't bad or anything, but it's only 4 episodes and they just kind of spin their wheels and ultimately nothing happens and the status quo is maintained. The middle of season 2, where they took the mid-season break felt like the actual ending of the season. The next 4 episodes we got just felt like filler.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Johnny Novgorod

gorfias

Unrealistic but happy
Legacy
May 13, 2009
7,140
1,889
118
Country
USA
I just got MAX again and may be late to the party on this one but just watched Season 7 of Rick & Morty and give it an A.

Many episodes and even seasons in the past just felt like they were running out of steam. And this 2023 season hits me like a ton of bricks. Funny, mind bending, irreverent, thought provoking, touching. I cannot recommend it enough.

Example: A society is about to witness a man's life before he euthanizes himself for reasons. Yikes.

 

Kyrian007

Nemo saltat sobrius
Legacy
Mar 9, 2010
2,578
658
118
Kansas
Country
U.S.A.
Gender
Male
Working on my anime backlog and just finished Rampo Kitan: Game of Laplace.

Hmm...

This one is tough to nail down my reaction to. It is an interesting idea, in a setting and genre that doesn't immediately annoy me. And it is really trope neutral. Some on the nose, but some subversion as well. And it doesn't pick a tone... in a good way. It can shift from comedy to drama to horror on a dime. So I should love it.

And I don't. It's not bad, but I really couldn't find anything "stand out" enough in it to recommend. This will probably go under the category "anime that 2 years from now I will probably have to look at my Crunchylist to remember if I have watched it or not."

Next up on my radar. Current series, Buddy Daddies. Backlog series: either Cop Craft, Classroom of the Elite, or Hakata Tonkotsu Ramens.
 

Dirty Hipsters

This is how we praise the sun!
Legacy
Feb 7, 2011
7,991
2,367
118
Country
'Merica
Gender
3 children in a trench coat
Just finished Hazbin Hotel.

It's a fun little show that was clearly a passion project with a lot of heart and personality. I'd probably watch more of it if another season gets made but I'm not chomping at the bit for it and it's definitely not something that I would be specifically get amazon prime to watch.

I was actually a bit disappointed by the music honestly. People really hyped up how catchy the songs are, and while there are a couple of good ones, like Poison, I honestly found a lot of them to be kind of bland and I can't even remember the vast majority of them. The sound track apparently won a bunch of awards, and I don't really see why.

Not going to lie, I think the weird horny fans of this show are the worst part about the show. I would characterize the fans of this show as "what if Rick and Morty fans were lesbians?"
 

Bob_McMillan

Elite Member
Aug 28, 2014
5,218
1,892
118
Country
Philippines
I just got MAX again and may be late to the party on this one but just watched Season 7 of Rick & Morty and give it an A.
I should really catch up to Rick and Morty. I haven't seen it since the half of the duo left.

OT: Finished Tomo Chan is a Girl on Netflix. Tomboy wants to get her childhood friend and crush to recognize her as a woman. Definitely not something to watch if you actually want a romance anime, but I got a bunch of good laughs out of it. Sometimes, voice actors really just save a show for me.

I also started on Shangrila Frontier. In a world where VR gaming isn't just a gimmick, a gamer addicted to playing crappy games finally tries out the most popular MMO available. It's nothing great, but it passes the time. It is kinda funny to watch a guy skip over the clearly very detailed lore of the game world to get to the next fun bit.
 
  • Like
Reactions: gorfias

BrawlMan

Lover of beat'em ups.
Legacy
Mar 10, 2016
27,393
11,473
118
Detroit, Michigan
Country
United States of America
Gender
Male
Ninja Kamui Episode 12 -It's about to go crazy now! Yamaji wants world domination and for all ninja to rule the world!
 
  • Like
Reactions: gorfias

PsychedelicDiamond

Wild at Heart and weird on top
Legacy
Jan 30, 2011
1,964
795
118
Pluto (2023)

Netflix original anime series based on a Manga by Naoki Urasawa which is in turn a gritty reimagining of a story arc of the iconic children's manga Astroboy.

There are two things I want to preface this with: I didn't particularly enjoy it, but I do think it's a hell of an interesting show. So interesting that I would like to get a bit deeper into it than I usually do, so here's another note: Watch out, spoilers.

First things first. I don't know a whole lot about Osamu Tezuka's Astroboy (or, to use the original title, Mighty Atom) franchise and as a matter of fact watching Pluto was the only reason I decided to look into it at all. I know that Atom is one of Japans most beloved manga characters and for the longest time I more or less just assumed he was sort of a squeaky clean cartoon character. But as I understand Astroboy did occasionally get surprisingly political. There was apparently a story where Atom travelled back in time to stop an American plane from bombing a Vietnamese village during the Vietnam War. Which, I genuinely mean it, is pretty cool.

So, Pluto is based on an Astroboy story arc called "The Greatest Robot on Earth". A story about an evil Middle Eastern dictator who commands a mad scientist to build a powerful robot to fight and destroy all the strongest robots on earth. Pluto takes this story and rewrites it into a globe trotting murder mystery that, mostly, follows android Gesicht, detective at Interpol, as he investigates a series of murders of robots and robot rights activists around the world, unraveling political intrigue, plots by sinister hate groups, covered up war crimes and shady science experiments.

Credit where its due, Pluto juggles a lot of plot threads and characters without carelessly dropping any of them, at the end it all ties them together pretty tightly and never gives off the impression of presenting mysteries for mysteries sake without knowing how to resolve them. It doesn't do that Abrams/Lindelof thing of either hand waving them away or quietly dropping them, hoping the viewer will just forget about it. And that whole "globe trotting mystery" angle sure serves well to keep the momentum going, it does constantly introduce interesting new scenery and setpieces that make it feel both vast in scale but also densely written.

So, all of this sounds great, right? Why did I not enjoy it more, then? Well, a couple of reasons. For one, I just found a lot of the emotional beats too heavy handed to take seriously and too many of the plot beats too contrived. There's an episode in the latter half where Gesicht learns two key pieces of information righter after one another in ways that are so comically convenient it damn near made me role my eyes. And there's a whole bunch of clunky little moments like that that I feel like individually, I could have probably pretty easily looked past, but taken together, they kinda added up enough to be irritating. But honestly, even that's not really it. I can still look past my misgivings with the nitty gritty of it if I like the bigger picture and this is where we get to the actual substance of my criticism.

So, bear with me here. This is where we get into the specifics. Last warning. I'm gonna spoil the series. It was the final episode after Gesicht had died and the focus shifted to Atom/Astroboy stopping the big bad robots from detonating a bomb to cause the eruption of a volcanoe that would wipe out most of humanity. And I kinda sighed and said to the person I was watching it with "Why does there always need to be a doomsday device?".

And then I did a double take. "Why _does_ there always need to be a doomsday device?"

And that's when some gears in my head started turning and I started to see the bigger picture and why exactly it didn't quite come together for me. All of Pluto's lofty ambitions and all its earnest attempts at political and social commentary and its bold decision to use a thinly veiled allegory for the Iraq War as its centerpiece there was really only one way it could have ended without betraying its source material. And, at the risk of stating the obvious, I feel like there's sort of a greater insight to be derived from it.

Pluto is an adaptation of an Astroboy comic. All the added nuance and complexity and allegory aside, the only way it could have possibly ended was always "Astroboy saves humanity by punching the bad guy and foiling his evil plan.". And, you know, that's clearly not a cop out, it's a very deliberate decision. And this has gotten me thinking because, you know, that's kind of the template for a lot of contemporary genre fiction that seeks to elevate what is widely considered low brow or juvenile material. Looking at some of the more ambitious recent superhero movies here, taking something like Batman, it's hard to argue that creators like Reeves, Snyder and Nolan have created some very complex and very mature takes on the material but there is, there practically has to be, the point where all that complexity is resolved, the stage is set, the alignments are clear and it all sort of crystalizes into the point when Batman has to punch the bad guy and foil his scheme.

And I'm aware, I probably sound like I'm doing a bit here, and I kinda am, but hear me out. It's the distilled essence of the structure of the modern superhero movie, if not action movie in general, that seeks to elevate its source material while keeping its structure intact. Looking at the more ambitious entries in the genre, the most recent Avengers Duology, Logan, Captain America Civil War... hell, I love the movie to bits, but Batman v Superman is almost the perfect text book example. An incredibly dense movie full of political and social commentary, character exploration, allusions to mythology but, in the end, there is a bad guy who has an evil plan that would destroy the world and Batman and Superman have to punch the bad guy and foil his plan. Hell, not to put to fine a point on it, but the monster Lex Luthor summons is literally named Doomsday!

On a side note, you know Watchmen? The definitive deconstructive superhero comic? Well, that's exactly why it is the definitive deconstructive superhero comic, isn't it? Because they don't punch the bad guy. And they don't foil his plan. The bad guys plan succeeds just fine. And whatever you can say about Watchmen, this still stands as a genuinely ballsy move.

And let me circle back around to Pluto here. That is why there needs to be a doomsday device. Because, despite adding all those complex, byzantine decorations that give it the appearance of a socially conscious sci-fi political thriller it's in essence a superhero adventure story and to finally make my point, after all that it has set up, the payoff just didn't do it for me. Again, I know it's not a matter of poor judgement on the authors part, people who read or watched it as an Astroboy adaptation would surely have been dissapointed if the climax played out any other way. But it wasn't my cup of tea. Interestingly enough, the most jarring thing it added to the original story was a sort of bigger picture man-behind-the-man villain who had little set up, little screen time, no backstory, a very unceremonial demise and seemed to only exist as a somewhat gratuitous cheap shot at the United States. I don't have anything clever to add about it, but that was weird, right?

I know this was a lot ramblier than my write ups of stuff I watched usually are but hey, this one got me thinking which, I guess, is to its credit. I didn't like it very much but unlike something like, say, Psycho Pass, which I watched a while ago, I found at least aspects of it interesting enough to talk about at greater length. Overall though, I stand by what I said, it wasn't my cup of tea.
 

BrawlMan

Lover of beat'em ups.
Legacy
Mar 10, 2016
27,393
11,473
118
Detroit, Michigan
Country
United States of America
Gender
Male
And that's when some gears in my head started turning and I started to see the bigger picture and why exactly it didn't quite come together for me. All of Pluto's lofty ambitions and all its earnest attempts at political and social commentary and its bold decision to use a thinly veiled allegory for the Iraq War as its centerpiece there was really only one way it could have ended without betraying its source material. And, at the risk of stating the obvious, I feel like there's sort of a greater insight to be derived from it.
Keep in mind, the manga released during the Iraq War/War on Terror and was the author calling out how bullshit it all was. That's the short and simple of it.

As for the rest, I love it. The only issue I were some parts of the ending and the Bush allegory living. Dude should have died. No amount of regret and "doing the right thing" doesn't make up for the wasted human and robot lives you've caused unnecessarily. Not mention, you were willing to sell out your country and people for a chance to live. Fuck you, Mr. "President"!
 

PsychedelicDiamond

Wild at Heart and weird on top
Legacy
Jan 30, 2011
1,964
795
118
Keep in mind, the manga released during the Iraq War/War on Terror and was the author calling out how bullshit it all was. That's the short and simple of it.


As for the rest, I love it. The only issue I were some parts of the ending and the Bush allegory living. Dude should have died. No amount of regret and "doing the right thing" doesn't make up for the wasted human and robot lives you've caused unnecessarily. Not mention, you were willing to sell out your country and people for a chance to live. Fuck you, Mr. "President"!
Yeah, they did let the President get off easy for having been manipulated. Which is better than he deserved, he did go along with it willingly and Brau should not have taken pity on him but killed him along with his boss.
 
  • Like
Reactions: BrawlMan

TheMysteriousGX

Elite Member
Legacy
Sep 16, 2014
8,379
6,895
118
Country
United States
If anybody wants to see some really cool monster stuff, Delicious in Dungeon episode 17 delivers in spades. I'm honestly impressed by the action Studio Trigger managed to produce, and that's high praise from me as I generally don't like what's counted as stereotypical "Studio Trigger Action". It feels more real, or at least, more old OVA like, with weight and heft you don't normally see. It's the end of an arc in a lot of ways, and the next few weeks deal with it's fallout and the introduction of new elements. I see a lot of people getting spoiled on these shots and deciding to watch the show, so they're a good advertisement.

 
Last edited: