What the…

August 22, 2009

Recently I’ve been using Netflix again, and I keep getting these small shocks when I search for an anime out of curiosity and THEY ACTUALLY HAVE IT. How many animes were licensed while I had my back turned? Why is Genshiken 2 available already? What’s been happening? Is it just me or has there really been a huge increase in the amount of animes that are licensed? Wait, now I feel like I’m the only one who never noticed… am I on camera?

I’m always looking around for series that I may want to watch, and then when I find when, where I can access it subbed to watch. Look at all the ones I can get from Netflix! LOOK AT THEM ALL!

– Terra e

– Black Lagoon

– xxxHolic

– Genshiken

– The Third

– Baccano!

– Beck

– Yamato Nadeshiko Shichihenge

– Samurai Champloo

I mean, I already knew a couple of them were licensed, but on Netflix! I remember the days when all Netflix had was Battle Athletes, Inuyasha and some random moe maid crap. I mean SAIUNKOKU? On NETFLIX? Queeeee?

*a couple minutes later* Ehhhhh even the original Phantom OVA is available? I thought that was super obscure and bad and unlicensed…

*a few more minutes later* Thank god they don’t have Nodame Cantabile or Spice and Wolf… but Jyu Ou Sei? ACTUALLY? I feel like my world is being taken over… they better not have Romeo x Juliet.

*later* Damn freaking lying stupids… If they have Rose of Versailles, I will disown them.

*checking…* Thank god. I didn’t really want to disown them. After all, it is a simple and easy way to watch subbed anime in good quality without breaking my hard drive. But if one of my favorites is licensed before I had the chance to download it and the torrent is removed due to the licensing company… I might actually have to pay for it to own it. (TT_TT)

It’s so weird… when I was little I had to go to the really REALLY quirky yet awesome neighborhood video store that has the most enormous amazing video collection I’ve ever seen to get things like Fancy Lala and all that…

Hrmm it looks like I’ll still have to go back there to watch Nadia: Secret of the Blue Water seeing as I can’t find a batch torrent that works and it’s not available on Netflix.

Gahhhh Chevalier D’Eon, too? Noir? Witch Hunter Robin? Gunslinger Girl? Both seasons? I hope all the subs are decent, bitches. Sigh. Maybe I’ll never need my uTorrent again… NO. Let it never come to that.

My life…


Jeanniex’s top 3 anime that require more seasons

August 20, 2009

Everybody who watches anime has experienced a terrible thing that happens all too frequently in anime: the TV series ends before the manga or light novel it was based on concludes. How many of you have wailed in agony because you will never find out what happens since you can’t read Japanese? How many of you have sat for hours calculating the likelihood of the novels being published in English to help ease your pain?

It is a terrible, terrible thing. And so, in order to comfort myself, I have decided to make a list of the top 3 animes I have watched that left me writhing on floor begging for more. (The reason I didn’t do Top 5 was all the others I thought off made less of an impact than these 3. Honorable mentions at the bottom, too!)

SAIUNKOKU MONOGATARI. Duh. This is the one that really upsets me, because it’s based off the least likely thing to get licenced in America: a light novel. And I know that there are wonderful fans out there translating small portions of the original novels, but being myself, I still cry because I’m not happy unless I can read it complete, in book form, very accurately translated and proof-read, with the original illustrations. Oh, the tragedy of being picky… and look how cute the novel covers are! They make me want to buy them all, even though I can’t understand them…

SaiMono Novels

Well, this is turning into a Saiunkoku post… since that IS mainly the only one I’m desperate for the next season of. But, we must not be half-hearted. To continue…

NATSUME YUUJINCHOU. How I love Natsume Yuujinchou. I could watch it for years. Days on end. And I would, except there’s only 2 seasons, ie 26 episodes. And yet the manga is ongoing! With this one, I’m just lazy and I don’t want to go find translations of the manga online and read them. And besides, it’s well-animated and I would miss the music and voice actors if I were to read the manga. Sad. I feel like this is pretty likely to get a new season in the near future. After all, the first season was VERY closely followed by the second. Hold on, did I just jinx that? Shit. *Knocks on wood*

Natsume AnimeNatsume Manga

Anime and manga art.

THE TWELVE KINGDOMS. Another obvious one… same reasons as Saiunkoku. Although, the Juuni Kokuki books are being released in english by TokyoPop. Which is AMAZING. I actually bought the first one recently. However, that doesn’t mean I like their translating style. And I really loved the anime. I miss the anime atmosphere. But props to TokyoPop for including the original illustrations in the release!

Juuni Kokuki ink

Honorable mention

Skip Beat! – Well… I did read the manga first. And the problem with shoujo is that it’s never well-animated. It was kind of fun to watch, but a dissappointing adaption. What can I say? Shoujo just doesn’t translate well, I guess… But that horrible, awful ending did make it way worse. Subsequent seasons would help… please… I would still watch them…

Fruits Basket – Again, read the manga first. But at least they did a better job with the animation and music than Skip Beat… come to think of it, I haven’t watched Fruits Basket in years… also, they did a better job concluding the story prematurely than SkipBeat. Still… I would watch if they ever made more.

Ouran High School Host Club – did I just say that shoujo doesn’t translate well? Ahem. Here is an exception. (Of course, I didn’t read the manga first this time -_-) I just felt ripped off at the final episode of Ouran HSHC. The manga is ongoing…Why can’t they make more?

Edit (as of 8/21/09)

Ghost Hunt – How could I have left this out? Once again, based on visual novels and yet it never adapted the last few… Tragic. I feel like there weren’t quite enough story arcs, too… and I miss being scared! There aren’t any other slightly thriller-esque animes that I really WANT to watch, and I don’t want to be TOO scared. So why can’t they make more Ghost Hunt? EHh?


An amazing thing has occured… I HAVE OFFICIALLY RETURNED TO DRAMAS!

August 18, 2009

… that’s right. Mwahahahaha. Now what prompted this strange, uncalled-for return? WHAT COULD IT POSSIBLY HAVE BEEN, to make me, so world-weary of asian dramas, return?

Ladies and gentlemen, it is… KOREAN HANA YORI DANGO!

I swore I wouldn’t, and yet… it got me. And I’m dangerously close to switching camps now.

WHAT? I know, I know.  I thought I loved the Japanese Hana Yori Dango, but then I saw the Korean version. At first I scoffed at the promotional images because the almighty F4 were wearing BOW TIES, and because Domyouji’s hair was ridiculous. But I came to love Jun Pyo. How is it that the Kdrama is less sappy than the Jdrama? How?

boys-before-flowers1

Let me explain (argh I can’t believe I’m switching over, I’m a traitor to myself TT_TT).

Jan di. Is SO much more awesome than Tsukushi. Tsukushi is suppossed to be really kick ass, right? But she ends up seeming a bit whiny. Jan di ends up way less whiny. And I like her more. Now Jun pyo… III thought I loved MatsuJun, but you know, I think he just got less and less cool after the first season ended. Jun pyo has managed to win me over by not losing himself during the New York (Macau)/fiance arc – as of yet. I’m at episode 16 right now.I WAS rather sceptical of Ji hoo at first, because we all love Rui, right? But by around the 7th episode I got used to him. One thing I had always been puzzled by in the Jdrama was the fact that Tsukushi and Rui seem so awwwwwkward all the time. Not so in the Kdrama. You finally get to see their friendship. I haven’t read the manga, but either Korean is a better take on it, or it’s just better period.

Sighhh. So I finally admit to myself and the world that I’m a turncoat… my life…

Oh one thing I miss… I actually liked Yuki more in the Jdrama. But Ga Eul definitely has her good points too. I hope we get to see more of her and Soujiro (still not quite sure of his Korean name… Yi Jung?), I always felt like their relationship was not done justice to. Also… Jan di really did look a bit too old. But I’m used to it now.

AH!

I actually did look into another Jdrama…

ORTHROS NO INU

Orthros

…but… it sucked. =P I was like, ‘Okay, this is GOING to be good. Please.’ But then it wasn’t. It was cheesy, draggy, and badly executed. Plus, the woman who plays the main lead (she was Kiyora in Nodame)… I just realized this, but I REALLY dislike her acting. Sigh. Maybe Haken no Oscar will be good? I fear I’ve already watched all the good Jdramas. (LOL because I never did finish Kurosagi… why can’t I just finish it? I’m pretty sure I only have one episode left, I even downloaded it….)


Seirei no Moribito

August 17, 2009

Jesus, I’m really behind on posts now… perhaps today will be a day of endless posts? I also have to reorganize my categories, but I don’t know how I should do that… it’s complicated because I was lazy and a lot of my posts have paragraphs about 4 or 5 shows, making it extra confusing to find things. Bleh. If only I was forward-thinking. Ah well, it’s too late now. Moving on!

seirei

You know, looking back I realize that all my reviews are way too positive. But I don’t watch things unless I like them… so basically that means that I won’t post about it unless I’ve watched it, and I won’t have watched it unless I liked it so I don’t really have to waste time saying that I liked it. BUT I DID. Lol.

I’m always happy to watch anything akin to Juuni Kokuki and Saiunkoku Monogatari, as I’ve been a fan of the ancient fictional asian-ish kingdoms type stories ever since I read Noriko Ogiwara‘s Dragon Sword and Wind Child. Speaking of, I should do a post on that. Seirei no Moribito has joined the ranks! This makes a triumvirate. How exciting. And all three are based on novels… I wonder if that has anything to do with it…

You may notice that I don’t include Fushigi Yuugi, which seems to turn up around these 3 as well… but frankly, it’s just not as good. =P

Alright, before I get on with it, I have to make ONE more comparison. This may be a little far-fetched, but Michiko e Hatchin? Michiko is basically an extra bad-ass, extremely irresponsible, less wise Balsa. Couldn’t help noticing this as I watched.

Plot – You can just tell this was adapted from a novel. And well was it adapted. Is that right…? Whatever, it was a great adaption of a novel. The directors of the Harry Potter movies could learn from them. Speaking of, Harry Potter 6? It’s not like a had high expectations, but REALLY? More on that later. ANYWAYS. Ahem. The plot was detailed and well-paced, with a beginning that basically dragged you into it. I would say the most controversial would be the middle part. After Balsa escapes (temporarily…) from the Emperor’s assassins with Chagum, the prince, there’s a lull of very quiet slice-of-life-esque episodes about their daily life. Personally, I enjoyed these. But I think they lasted just long enough. If they had lasted longer, they would have started to seem like they were bordering on filler. But the atmosphere reminded me a lot of Saiunkoku at that point, which was nice. Soon enough the adventure picks up again, though. I feel like I’m not expressing this quite right… ahhh forget detailed reviews, the plot is good, okay? It’s good.

Characters – the characters are fleshed out exceedingly well. Again, like a novel in that aspect. It freaking IS a novel. Alright, now that I’ve made that clear enough… none of the characters, ACTUALLY NONE of the characters is even slightly one-sided. They are all very realistic, very human. There are no “bad guys”. Chagum really develops, and so does Shuga, surprisingly. Balsa doesn’t really need to develop, but the episode where she has a duel with her old enemy showcased her personality extremely well. And aww I love Tanda. I feel so bad for him. Poor dear Tanda.

Sound – The background music was very well manipulated; I didn’t LOVE the OP and ED, but they definitely weren’t intolerable or anything. Lol at L’arc en Ciel singing the OP. Balsa’s seiyuu had an awesome voice.

Animation – was consistently amazing. VERY well blended 3D, very realistic and flowy, very pleasant to watch.

Overall – Obviously recommend to Juuni Kokuki and Saiunkoku Monogatari fans. But I recommend this to anyone who really wants a novel-like experience in an anime. I mean, thinking about it, this is pretty rare. Download it while you can before it gets liscenced!

Balsa


In which I cry more than Jaccuzi Splot from Baccano!

August 17, 2009

Look, I love Fruits Basket, but you have to admit that our precious and beloved main character Tohru cries an awful lot. I don’t think I would be exaggerating TOO much if I dared to say that she’s cries at least every other chapter. So you see, saying I cried more than her means I cried A LOT. 3 guesses to what it was that made me cry so much.

Anyone out there who has watched Baccano will probably recall that Jaccuzi Splot spent at least 3/4 of the whole series in tears. I’m not saying I spent 3/4 of this series I’m reviewing now in tears, I’m just saying that I cried A LOT. Now, three guesses as to what it was that made me cry so obscenely much?

Was it:

a) They Kiss Again episode 2 for being so unbearable?

b) Inuyasha?

c) Beauty and the Beast?

Nope. You’re all wrong. It was…

ROSE OF VERSAILLES

Rose of Versailles

Jesus christ that is tragic. I don’t think I’ve cried that much because of a movie or book since I saw Homeward Bound, which for some reason made me cry an inexplicably large amount of tears when I saw it for the first time when I was 6 (I was an animal-lover child). Hell, this is more tragic than Romeo and Juliet for christ sake; those cheesy, sappy over-dramatic bastards. I mean, I cried over Jean de Florette; but I cried for HOURS over this. Episode 37. I literally cried for an hour after watching episode 37 of Rose of Versailles. I was crying too much to be able to read the subtitles so I had to stop watching and go to bed. The next day I cried straight through the last 3 episodes. Why the hell did it make me cry so much?

Now whenever I study the French Revolution I’m going to bawl like a baby.

It wasn’t like it was completely unexpected, either. I mean, the French Revolution was already a tragic period in history; and I’d been warned by a friend that Rose of Versailles was “kind of” tragic. Kind of tragic? Kind of tragic? KIND OF? I think I’ve already expressed how I feel about the level of tragedy in this show.

But let’s make this a more orthodox review, shall we?

Godddd it’s too sad to review… *deep breath* Okay. Organized, organized.

Animation/Chara designs – Well… this was made in 1979… need I to say more? But, even though there are a LOT of still frames, it’s not done inelegantly, and it really is forgivable… it’s not like they had even half of the animation technology available now. I actually really liked the character designs, being a fan of old school things… but the cheesy sparkly eyes are so deceiving *cries*

Characters – Yes, the characters are a strong point of Rose of Versailles. At first they’re all just kids… and then… and then Aughhhhh WHY MUST IT BE THIS WAY? What I’m saying is; although not all the characters are really fleshed out – on the contrary, I wouldn’t really say any of them are, except maybe Oscar – you still care about them, and they’re interesting. The way the interact is interesting. And none of the villainous characters are completely one-sided. DuBarry, for instance, at first she’s just this jerky mistress and Marie-Antoinette is the good girl; but then you can see it’s much more than that. Jeanne Valois wasn’t one-sided either; she really wanted to be happy by becoming rich, and in the end she just gave up because she was tired. What I’m trying to say is, even though you never had it explained for you explicitly, the way the story was told you could look at all the characters objectively; and you were encouraged to question whether there really was a “good guy” and a “bad guy”. Same thing for the conflict between the nobles and the commoners. Even though Marie-Antoinette had been something of a main character in the beginning, and a “good guy”; of course in the end she was really ignorant. But it wasn’t completely her fault that she became that way. And the commoners weren’t saints, either. Rose of Versailles expressed the reality very well, EXTREMELY well considering it kind of looks like a kid’s show on the outside.

OH I almost forgot – Oscar Francois de Jarjeyes, my poor, dear love. She’s awesome and righteous, but you can tell where she’s naive. She’s kind of a cross between Shi Seiran and Tenjou Utena.

Seiran

+

utena1

=

Oscar

?

Well, it’s up to you to decide if you agree with me. Actually, I was reminded a lot of Saiunkoku while watching Rose of Versailles. I wonder why? Definitely wasn’t as tragic… it must be the whole court aspect of it. Both shows spend a lot of time at court. Two very different courts, but courts just the same.

Plot – of course the plot isn’t really ORIGINAL, it’s history… but what would Rose of Versailles be without Oscar, the fictional main character? Oh god… the non-fiction part is tragic, but why does the fiction part have to be so tragic too?! But the way the build-up to the revolution was created was really amazing. And obviously, since it made me cry so much, the rest of the plot was very intense as well. Ahh… they can try, but who can out-write history?

Sound – Well, a good portion of the music was rather cheesy at first, but it got me in the end. There’s no school like old school, after all. Ahahaha.

Overall – I will admit, after seeing the first episode, I was a tad skeptical. In fact, it wasn’t till about 6 months later that I actually decided I had to give in and watch the whole thing. While the outer shell of Rose of Versailles may seem cheesy, there’s SO much more. No wonder it’s a classic. Let’s see…I guess we could compare it to Snow White… NO. WE COULD NOT. See, America just isn’t awesome enough to have such unbelievably amazing classic animation. I don’t think there’s a way to describe it. But if you think you want to KNOW shoujo, the REAL shoujo, YOU MUST WATCH THIS. Also if you want to cry. And if you like history or France. Or kick-ass female leads. Alright. Words fail me. Just watch it.

Now that THAT’s over with; I think I’m going to print out little pictures of Oscar and Andre, frame them, and put them next to each other next to a little tiny vase in which I will put new flowers every week, preferably roses.


And, a month later, a new post! HURRAY! ~ Ghost Hunt

August 16, 2009

GHOST HUNT

GhostHunt

Mai is a decent main character. Yes, she is a little bit useless. But she’s useless in a very realistic way. Like she’s not useless in a moe way. Since it’s NOT moe-like, I don’t mind that she’s not a fantastic kick-ass main character. I mean, I would definitely be more useless than her. I don’t have slightly dormant sucky psychic powers. Who wants to drag around a regular person when they’re trying to determine the cause of strange activities? I wouldn’t. Of course, they do mostly just drag her around and her dormant slight psychic powers aren’t even very helpful. (Yes, they do always manage to appear at exactly the right time, but…) Anyway; she might piss YOU off, but I was able to tolerate her for the most part.

The problem with shows aimed at girls is the guy characters are usually pretty good, albeit one sided, while the main girl character makes you want to punch your computer screen. Naru was quite cool. And I’m really glad that he never inexplicably decided to fall for Mai just because that was what the directors wanted. He never had a complete personality turnaround in favor of her either, which is another thing shoujo directors are fond of doing.

Sadly, the characters all lacked development. But this is an arc based show, and it’s less common to see character development in episodic story lines; so that’s forgivable. What’s NOT forgivable is that Ghost Hunt was based on novels by Fuyumi Ono, who wrote the Twelve Kingdoms (and I only decided to actually watch Ghost Hunt because she was involved in the plot) and they didn’t adapt the whole freaking series. Again. What is the issue with these people? Do they NOT understand that they would probably actually make MORE money if they adapted the original plot which is probably BETTER than whatever filler crap ending THEY come up with? Huh? I know I’m just repeating this old complaint, but JESUS it makes me so irritated. It’s called rationality people, and maybe you should go out and buy some, because I’m sensing a very dangerous lack of it in your general area.

Well; even though it would have been nice to know the real plot and ending, I’m satisfied enough. I really enjoyed watching Ghost Hunt, actually, because it’s so rare for me to watch something a) episodic and b) scary. Most of the arcs weren’t actually frightening, but they got a little creepy. Especially the music. Talk about chilling. Having an episode end on a cliff-hanger, and then the creepery ending song starts playing and it’s dark out? Chills. Well, at least with the Vlad arc. That was the scariest thing I’ve watched in a while. I did like the music though.

Another really great thing about Ghost Hunt was the character designs and animations. The designs were simple and relaxing to watch, nothing was too over the top. Actually the fact that it was animated so simply kind of took away from the scary factor. But I was plenty scared enough, LOL.

But overall I thought it was scary in a relaxing way and I was always looking forward to the next episode, and the next little arc. This had actually encouraged me not to be so turned off by episodic things. So I’m definitely glad I watched it, and I think it’s a good thing for you to watch if you have a little spare time or you’re into a more realistic take on the supernatural and don’t mind being a little creeped out. Of course if you’re into hardcore horror and gore, you might write this off as lame. But watch the Vlad arc. That was very, very frightening. And it’s not trying too hard to be scary, either, I liked that. Anyway, very enjoyable.