Watamote: A Princess Jellyfish For Beginners

•October 5, 2013 • 5 Comments

Watashi ga Motenai no wa Dou Kangaetemo Omaera ga Warui!” or Watamote for short is an anime that came out of nowhere to take the anime community by storm, the hardcore community anyway. The title roughly translates to “No Matter How I Look at It, It’s You Guys Fault I’m Not Popular,” and that is really the best synopsis for the show.

watamote 2

 

Continue reading ‘Watamote: A Princess Jellyfish For Beginners’

True Love Only Exists In Makoto Shinkai Anime

•June 25, 2013 • 8 Comments

Disclaimer: I couldn’t really find a way to talk about this movie in a clinical manner because of how it personally affected me, this may be one of the most personal articles I have ever written. I hope you enjoy it regardless.

Amazing BG Art

I recently managed to grab together the guts to watch Makoto Shinkai’s (5 cm per Second, A place Promised in Our Days) new film The Garden of Words. I had been avoiding watching it due to the fact that his movies tend to pack a serious emotional punch, almost like they are made specifically to personally torment me.

Anyway, I finally managed to see it today and just as expected I really enjoyed it. Its a 45 minute long short film about a 15 year old high schooler who aspires to be a shoe maker and a 27 year old high school teacher who is having work related problems.

The two meet at a pavilion in a park or garden on rainy mornings and slowly begin to interact and get closer to each other with each passing day. Despite what the title says, there are very few lines of dialogue in this film which is something I highly appreciate because the visual and music are more than enough to convey the message to the viewers.

intimacy

See The Garden of Words is a typical bitter-sweet romance story, the signature of Makoto Shinkai works and I love it for that. Just like his first ever work , Voices of a Distant Star which he amazingly did entirely on his own, The Garden of Words is about long distance relationships. I have somehow been unfortunate in my love life, 2 of the 3 relationships I’ve been in have been long distance, and I think that is why I respond so well to Makoto Shinkai works.

The Nostalgic and dream like aura his anime have work extremely well to convey the feeling of incomprehensible loneliness and longing one feels when they are in a long distance relationship or have found themselves in unrequited love. Its not exactly gloomy its somewhat comforting yet gloomy at the same time which is exactly how all of Makoto Shinkai’s romance films feel.

I have noticed that this is also a major complaint for most anime fans who “don’t get” his loyal supporters. I believe in order to really enjoy Makoto Shinkai’s films one must allow themselves to be immersed in this gloomy, lonely yet comforting world he is building, one must be able to be emotionally manipulated by the almost cryptic dialogue in his films. That or they just have to experience what it’s like to be in a long distance relationship or bitter-sweet relationship at least once.

Most of Shinkai’s anime don’t have peachy perfect endings, which are unfortunately how most of these relationships end up anyway, but somehow they still leave you with a sense of hope. “Maybe true love does exist out there”, “maybe they can get together if they really work harder at it.” All these are thoughts that Shinkai leaves lingering in his viewer’s minds as the credits roll on each of his beautifully animated films.

bitter-sweet endings

In the end, The Garden of Words is one of the most immaculately drawn and beautifully animated anime I have ever seen and its content is something any romance fan should see. It struck a chord in me that hasn’t really been touched since 5 cm per second and Toradora!

AniBloggers Choice Anime Awards 2012: Winners

•April 6, 2013 • 14 Comments

The ACAA this year was just as successful as last years (minus my hiccup with the late post; My apologies guys it wont happen again) That said the total number of bloggers who participated grew but the votes were less. This is because this year I forced every site to unanimously decide among its own members which shows they declared as a unit to be the best. This made my Job easier and theirs more interesting, or ferocious depending on how opinionated they were.

The Result was rather astounding and to be honest pretty impressive. Here are te shows your favourite Anime pundits have declared were the best that aired in 2012.

Continue reading ‘AniBloggers Choice Anime Awards 2012: Winners’

The Kidd’s Top 12 Anime of 2012

•January 1, 2013 • 17 Comments

Just like last year here are my top anime picks of 2012, these are also my nominations for the 2012 version of the Anibloggers Choice Anime Awards.

12 -Sword Art Online

Sword Art Online

I seem to always be on the apologetic side of the blogosphere when it comes to these polarising shows. Last year I added Fractale to my list completely unironically and that brought me some flack, I have a feeling this might too. Sure I haven’t completed SAO yet but that doesn’t erase the fact that all the SAO Ive seen so far has been entertaining. Its not as good as I or we all thought it had the potential to be but its still good.

This is a show that makes the list simply because of its unique MMO in real life premise. The way the characters have to switch their mindsets from fantasy to real life survival in a world that is purely fantasy is fascinating to watch. I’d recommend SAO to any anime fan any day.

11-Natsuyuki Rendezvous

Natsuyuki-Rendezvous

Natsuyuki’s first 5 episodes is the best anime of 2012. Just like Hanasaku Iroha last year the show delves into the meh zone after it loses touch with what its actually good at in the second half (Im never gonna let that HanaIro thing go am I). Im a sucker for Josei and Natsuyuki’s story about a middle aged widow falling in love with a much much younger man was something that was not only new to me but the anime fandom as a whole. The comedy kept the show light enough to watch during some of those dreary somber moments and the fantasy elements added something a little special to the mix too.

10-Hyouka

Hyouka

What do you get when you mix KyoAni with a lot of money trying to show off? You get Hyouka. Animation, animation, animation. Hyouka’s overarching storyline may not have been the stuff of Legend but the one off episodic mysteries are what kept me coming back for more. Id also be a fool to deny the fact that the character designs kept me watching. The boys were just as cute as the girls if not more. It was a good year for cute boys doing cute things.

Continue reading ‘The Kidd’s Top 12 Anime of 2012′

Crafting A Masterpiece: A Children’s Tale of Environmentalism, War and Feminism

•December 18, 2012 • 8 Comments

Im one of those guys that is incredibly skeptical about so called “Anime Classics” I have been burned and disappointed on more than one occasion. Which is part of the reason why I was so reluctant to actually sit down and watch Hayao Miyazaki’s so called Coup de Gras “Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind.” This was his first feature on an original project and the beginning of what would be an illustrious career at Studio Ghibli, a studio he pretty much funded off of this film.

Nausicaa

I decided to finally take the plunge  after going through my entire Ghibli backlog. I am glad to say the hype was true. Nausicaa had production values that were clearly way ahead of its time, a true pioneer and benchmark for what could be done in animation at the time and heck even today. The hand drawn colorful canvas in motion was simply breathtaking to look at and the realisation that one of my favourite scenes in the movie was animated by Hideaki Anno came as no surprise at all.

Eva 4.0 wait wut

Visuals aside the most astounding and impactful attributes of this anime are its underlying themes, such as Environmentalism. Sure by now most Miyazaki fans know the man has a fetish for nature and this is his most obvious outlet for the subject in all of his works. I found it quite interesting that he chose a childrens film to “preach” his message, was he trying to instill his beliefs in the children at a young age or was a family film the best way to subtly put his message across to as many people as possible. Either way, Miyazaki finds a way to make you think about the environment in a different light. The Jungle is both a threat and a deliverance to the humans in this world.

Its a threat because it is the home to the generally violent(when provoked) over-sized insects and a deliverance because it takes in all the toxic air that is slowly destroying the planet. Miyazaki manages to create an ironic conundrum that forces the viewer to make an introspective choice as to what they would do in such a situation. i.e resort to violence and destroy the woods that are home to the violent insects or keep the woods and continue to live with the growing threat of being exterminated by said insects. The 3rd choice comes in the form of making peace with nature which is the role that Nausicaa plays.

The Ohmu

I also found some underlying themes relating to the use of weapons of mass destruction for war. The scene in which “The Warrior” emerges to destroy the insects is a direct representation of what happened in Hiroshima. The humans from each tribe  are constantly at war simply to control this “Warrior” which in the end does more harm than good to the environment. The fact that the very reason the air was poisonous in the first place was because of Fallout, but this didn’t seem to deter the humans from using the “Warrior” at all.

Its  a well known fact that Miyazaki is a feminist and this movie is one of the best examples of this fact. Nausicaa manages to be a leader to her people while still maintaining her child like feminine side. Princess Kushana, the leader of the opposing faction happens to be a female as well, but Miyazaki doesn’t just paint characters as black or white. Kushana strongly believes her actions will save the world, and will do anything required to achieve her goal. She is flawed but that’s also what makes her strong.

Art

I think its great that a family film had such deep, thought provoking themes, its because of stellar story telling like this that Miyazaki is held in such high regard. It also helps that the movie had an amazing dub cast and excellent extras that have Director commentaries and a very informative short documentary on how Studio Ghibli was founded. If you are one of the very few people that have not yet seen this Masterpiece of a film. I implore you to do so, it is definitely Studio Ghibli’s best work to date.

Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind is now available on Blu Ray and DVD from Madman Entertainment.

 

Blu Ray Cover

Honey and Clover Complete Collection Review

•November 22, 2012 • 3 Comments

Im pretty sure most of my regular readers(love you guys) know at this point that I am a huge romance junkie, but not any kind of romance I like the realistic down to earth, painful kind of romance and we all know that the only place to get that kind of romance is in a certain anime genre known as Josei. The bar for romance in anime  for me has been set by Toradora! for the past 5 years or so, So does  Honey and Clover have what it takes to equal that bar or maybe even surpass it?

Continue reading ‘Honey and Clover Complete Collection Review’

Ani-Bloggers Choice Anime Awards Rules For 2012

•November 2, 2012 • 49 Comments

Who Shall Prevail?

Its that time of the year again folks, the time when almost all the anime bloggers will sit down and ponder on what anime they saw throughout the year was the best. There will be top 10 lists galore and surprisingly not a single one of them will be completely identical. With that in mind it is with great pleasure that I will now announce the rules of this years ACAA , to get the one and true official list of the top 12 anime chosen by none other than your favourite anime pundits exclusively.

If you are unfamiliar with what the whole event is like take  a quick look at how last years Awards fared. Without further ado here are the rules.

RULES

  • Various Anime Bloggers must either submit a list of their top 12 anime that aired this year (via Emial thats Kidd-05@live.com) or better yet post the list on their blog.
  • Out of the 12 anime, bloggers must then pick one show as their anime of the year.
  • Only Anime Bloggers, Journalists, Podcasters and the like are allowed to participate in the voting
  • All participants must notify me of their willingness to participate via twitter, Email or by leaving a comment with a trackback to their blog/show/site in order for me to keep track.
  • Notifications of participation has  a deadline of 30th November
  •  Submissions of votes have a deadline of 30th December
  • Only shows that aired this year are allowed to be picked, even cross over shows. Exception to the rule is long running Shonen or Shojo shows
  • Only movies that were available subbed this year can be nominated.
  • It is recommended that sites or blogs with more than one reviewer or writer come to a consensus on what their sites top 12 is. This will make it easier for me to tally and more fun for the readers too.

Continue reading ‘Ani-Bloggers Choice Anime Awards Rules For 2012′

 
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