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Literature
Apsm anime review: Hakata Tonkatsu Ramens.
AKA, The show with the crossdressing assassin.

RELEASE DATE: 2018
EPISODES:  12
STUDIO: Satelight (Log Horizon season one)
DIRECTOR: Kenji Yasuda.
PLOT:
Hakata at a glance seems to be a nice town to visit if you're in a mood to travel. However, it also harbours a seedy underbelly filled with shady crime syndicates, and assassins and hitmen looking for some extra dough.
One of these happens to be the effeminate Lin, a Chinese immigrant who has been working hard to be reunited with his sister, even if he has to crossdress as a girl to do it. However, when his boss doesn't bother to pay him enough, he ends up teaming up with one of his targets: the laid-back, baseball-loving detective Zenji Banba.
I smell sitcom!
However, as things progress, this unlikely duo soon form a friendship as they and their unusual group of friends cross paths with some of the most dangerous figures in the underworld, whilst also get
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Literature
A Witch's Akko-demia. (Atsuko Kagari tg)
(Disclaimer: I do not own Little Witch Academia or its characters. The story is set after the final episode of the series, so spoilers ahead. Story features male to female transformation and some minor animal transformation.)
Winston Cuthbert gave a yawn, as he and several other young boys were being lead around a castle courtyard by a  lean woman. She had a stern face, had her hair done up in a bun, and (like many of the students and staff here) was dressed in black robes. As they progressed on a tour of the school, the woman who'd introduced herself as Professor Finnelan seemed rather passionate with giving every square detail of the grand castle the school was built on.
“And it was during the golden age of magic, that many of the finest witches were taught here...”
But Winston was too disinterested in the woman's speech, instead willing to glance at the group of young girls of various nationalities that were gawking at his group. Some even looked at Winston with int
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Literature
Apsm watches: Sailor Moon R! Episodes 58-68!
Disclaimer: these are reviews of the Viz/Bang Zoom dub version of Sailor Moon. Spoilers for episodes 58 to 68.
LAST TIME ON SAILOR MOON: Two aliens posing as siblings arrive on Earth to feed their Makai Tree (and themselves) some nice juicy energy. However, when their 'monster-of-the-week' approach gets too disruptive, Luna and Artemis are forced to re-awaken the memories of Usagi and her friends. For some strange reason, Mamoru's memories aren't restored. To make matters more confusing, a figure who looks like Mamoru known as the Moonlight Knight appears, only to be revealed that its not him? DA FAQ?
In all this chaos, Usagi gets a power-up thanks to her mother from a past life and Cutie Rods the shit out of everything. Not to be left out, the other Guardians get new sweet powers which they forget to use half the time.
However, Ail and Ann's tree has been acting strange lately, and desperate times call for desperate measures...
EPISODE 58: AKA, Ann tries to murder Usagi with
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Literature
Apsm anime review: Ancient Magus Bride.
AKA,  That time a schoolgirl got bought by a centuries old skull-headed mage so he could marry her. WHERE'S CHRIS HANSEN?

RELEASE DATE: 2016 (OVA's) 2017-2018 (TV Series)
EPISODES:  27 (3 OVA's, 24 TV episodes)
STUDIO: Wit Studio (Attack On Titan)
DIRECTOR: Norihiro Naganuma (Yowamushi Pedal movie).
PLOT:
Japanese schoolgirl Chise Hattori has gone through an awful childhood. Before her mother killed herself, she wished Chise hadn't been born. Not helping matters is the fact that Chise can see spirits that no one else can see, half of which have terrorised her and isolated her from others.
On the verge of suicide, Chise is offered to put herself up on a special auction in London. Feeling the need for some companionship, she accepts. To her surprise however, she is bought out by Elias Ainsworth, a centuries-old mage with a beast skull for a head, who is interested in Chise's abilties as a Sleigh Beggy,
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Literature
The dragon maid's potion (Tohru tg)
(Disclaimer: I don't own Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid or it's characters. Characters may act out of character. Story consists of male-to-female transformation, slight mental change and some dragon tf.)
“And a dash of Devil's Paw petals!” A pigtailed maid with deer-like horns gleefully cackled as she applied a small vial of blue liquid into a steaming pot. Almost instantly the concoction inside bubbled furiously and blushed a shade of violet. A few seconds later, it settled back to a calm simmer.
To many, the young girl could pass as an adorable maid. Even the deer-like horns on her head and the green, scaly dragon tail poking underneath the hem of her skirt would be dismissed as some sort of cosplay. What many people didn't realise however was that the maid was actually a massive dragon from another world, who happened to take the guise of a cute maid.
The maid, known by others as Tohru, giggled to herself, her orange-red reptilian eyes glimmering with mischief. All the whi
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Literature
Apsm anime review: Zombieland Saga
AKA, That zombie idol group anime.

RELEASE DATE: 2018
EPISODES:  12
STUDIO: MAPPA (Yuri On Ice!!!)
DIRECTOR: Munehisa Sakai (Sailor Moon Crystal: parts one and two)
PLOT:
Sakura Minamoto is an ordinary high schooler hoping to make her idol dreams a reality...
...And then she got hit by a truck.
Unlike Yusuke Urameshi however, she doesn't meet any grim reaper. Instead, she wakes up ten years later in a mansion full of zombies, with no memory of her past. As it turns out she has been resurrected as a zombie herself, and her new manager Kotaro has plans to have her in his idol group in some convoluted plan to revitalise the culture of the Saga Prefecture.
Of course, a lot of Kotaro's plan doesn't make sense: there is no explanation why Kotaro believes a zombie idol group is necessary, or how he was able to resurrect seven girls in the first place. Sakura is so far the only zombie to have 'awoken' and has no i
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Literature
Apsm anime review: The Saga Of Tanya The Evil.
AKA, The one where a loli sociopath girl fights in World War One with magic.

RELEASE DATE: 2017*
EPISODES:  12*
STUDIO: NUT (FLCL Alternative)
DIRECTOR: Yutaka Uemura (Punch Line, FLCL Alternative)
PLOT:
In an alternate version of 1920's Europe where magic exists, the Empire (AKA, Germany) are struggling with multiple conflicts from various neighbours. Fortunately enough, they happen to have a star mage on the front lines, and is known as a cold, brutal officer.
And she's also a 9 year old girl.
To be more precise, Tanya used to be a cold-hearted Japanese businessman who was pushed onto a train (by a man she just fired) and was confronted by a God-like being she refers to as Being X. However, refusing to believe that God exists, the businessman is punished by being reincarnated into a little orphan girl. Knowing she won't be able to reincarnate again, Tanya is determined to survive by climbing the ranks of
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Literature
Into enemy territory (Code Geass tg)
(Disclaimer: I do not own Code Geass or its characters. This features male-to-female transformation. Characters may act OOC)
Area Eleven (Formerly Japan), 2017 AD in an alternate timeline.
Akira Shindou nervously walked down the hallway, lead by a green haired woman in a cheongsam. His black military outfit stood out against the light coloured walls and fancy furniture of the mansion. He never imagined he'd again be in a place like this, especially due to his status as a Non-Britannian in a Britannian-occupied colony that had once been his homeland. The only reason he was allowed in was because his organisation were using it as a base, and the man who lead it supposedly had connections with the mansion's owner. Ahead of Akira were a pair of double doors, where the biggest meeting in his entire life was about to happen.
It had been 7 years since Britannia, the largest colony in the world, had invaded Japan and renamed it Area Eleven. As a result, the entire population of Japan were sudd
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Literature
Apsm anime review: Hinamatsuri.
AKA, That time a mobster raised a telekinetic girl.

RELEASE DATE: 2018
EPISODES:  12
STUDIO: Feel (My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU TOO!, Tsuki ga Kirei)
DIRECTOR: Kei Oikawa (My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU TOO!).
PLOT:
Nitta is a member of the Yakuza, who likes nothing more than to admire his fancy China collection.
Then, one day- BAM! A METAL POD WITH A NAKED TELEKENETIC GIRL INSIDE TELEPORTS INTO HIS APARTMENT!
Said telekenetic girl happens to be the deadpan Hina, who apparently is not only lazy and would rather eat fish eggs for every meal, but drains Nitta of his money and even his own China collection! However, as time progresses and other espers appear, Nitta and Hina become an unlikely family unit.
PROS:
- One of the show's biggest strengths is its sense of humour. A lot of this has to do with how  everyone reacts to Hina and the people that are connected with her, how Hina adjusts t
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Literature
Ask Sylvie Anything!
North Pole- the elf realm.
A solitary snow cabin stands out near a large Ice tower, which is almost as big as any skyscraper in the known Modern World. Inside the cabin, one can see a firm orange glow that radiates warmth amongst the snow covered Pine trees and the chill air that bites into your skin.
The front door opens, the radiant heat from inside wafting over like a welcome hug.
Without hesitation you enter, where you see a roaring fire blasting out any memory of cold from your weary body. Then your eyes wander to a big green armchair and the occupant sitting on it. She is pretty, and at most appears to be in her early thirties. She's wearing a sweater that has a Christmas tree emoji on it, and candy-cane striped stockings. Her most distinguishing feature is her long white hair, and her pointy elven ears. Sitting in a simple wooden chair, she drinks a red mug of hot chocolate with a large marshmallow floating on top.
She waves at you. “Greetings weary traveller! I was expect
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Literature
Apsm anime review: Place Further Than The Universe
AKA, 4 high school girls go to Antarctica.

RELEASE DATE: 2018
EPISODES:  13
STUDIO: Madhouse (Black Lagoon, One Punch Man)
DIRECTOR: Atsuko Ishizuka (No Game, No Life)
PLOT:
Mari Tamaki is a high schooler having a mid-life crisis. When she entered high school, she made a list of things she would do to make the most of her youth, including to go on a journey. However, over a year later and she has yet to do anything. Even skipping school proves to be too intimidating a task.
The turning point comes when she spots a girl drop one million yen at a train station. Said owner happens to be the shy but stubborn Shirase, who has an unusual goal: to go to Antarctica (or the South Pole in Layman's terms). Only a few years prior, Shirase's mother disappeared whilst on an expedition there, and she's determined to look for her.
Encouraged by Shirase's determination, and seeing it as an opportunity to conquer her doubts
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Mature content
Issei's Big Bust 2: Electric Boob-aloo! (TG) :iconapsm:apsm 67 8
Literature
Apsm watches Sailor Moon R! Episodes 47-57.
Disclaimer: these are reviews of the Viz/Bang Zoom dub version of Sailor Moon. Spoilers for episodes 47-57.
PREVIOUSLY ON SAILOR MOON: Mamoru was brainwashed to fight for Beryl, but is also crap at his job and still acts like a good guy anyway. After a lot of time-wasting filler however, our heroes finally find their base and kill off Kunzite.
What follows is Usagi's worst day ever: Beryl's assassins kill her friends, she gets beaten up by her boyfriend, sees said boyfriend die, then sacrifices herself to take down Beryl once and for all. Good thing her wish to return to normal has resurrected her friends and erased her memory of that awful experience.
Unfortunately for Usagi, the show became popular enough for another season...
Let's continue!
*
EPISODE 47: AKA, The arrival of Ail and Ann, and Usagi gets her memories back.
Imagine you're Toei animation in 1993. The anime Sailor Moon has become a big hit, but the author of the manga, Naoko Takeuchi is planning to end things with
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Literature
Becoming Yoko: Final part (Yoko Littner tg)
(Disclaimer: I do not own Gurren Lagann or it's characters, including Yoko. Possible spoilers for the series implied.)
As the days and weeks continued, Lucas (or Yoko as everyone else was calling her) gradually got adjusted to her new life. Some days happened to be tough, especially when the Beastmen attacked. Because of her previous heroics, Lucas was invited to join the assault teams, which she did out of obligation. Each time she joined them, she worried that one of these days she would screw up and be killed. However, it only took one deadly accurate shot of hers to get her confidence back. She wasn't always the hero, but she was slowly gaining the respect of her fellow villagers and soon the fear would be less prominent the more she used her rifle.
Then there were the peaceful days, which she was oddly appreciative for. There was no internet or television, but there was no expectation for her to do anything spectacular. Sometimes she would play with the other kids, or even do meni
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Literature
Becoming Yoko: Part 2 (Yoko Littner tg)
(Disclaimer: I do not own Gurren Lagann or it's characters, including Yoko.)
An eerie sense of familiarity struck Lucas as he noted the large iron doors that lay ahead of him. Inside was a large space, like an aircraft hangar, with several makeshift huts and living quarters already well made.
As the doors slid closed with a resonating clang, it occurred to Lucas where he was. He thought he was on another part of the world, or even an alien planet. He could've even dismissed this as a really well put together theme park if not for the portal that sent him here and his gradual transformation. Besides, unless there was a small group of anime fans who decided to live in the desert somewhere, there was one other conclusion.
“Welcome, to Littner Village.” Tak confirmed Lucas' suspicions with such certainty that there was no way Lucas could call him out on it. He was too distracted absorbing that he was standing in a place he'd only seen briefly in the anime, when-
“POR!
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Literature
Becoming Yoko: Part 1 (Yoko Littner tg)
(Disclaimer: I do not own Gurren Lagann or it's characters, including Yoko. This story also features male-to-female transformation.)
THUMP.
Lucas's shoulders and neck were forced into the toilet stall door by a large fist. As he gritted his teeth at the hard knock, he looked up to find a much bigger boy.
“Where is it?” The larger boy sneered, his thick neck almost sinking into his broad shoulders.
“W-where's what?” Lucas tried to act defiant, but even his voice was gradually getting quieter with each word.
“You know what!” The bully pinned Lucas to the door. “My money!”
“Why?” Lucas whined, only for the bully's fist to tighten around his collar.
“Don't you fucking dare push me!” Reese hissed. “Remember the last time you tried to bite back?”
Lucas shuddered, the bruise around his eye still showing discolouration from when Reese's fist collided with the boy's face. Reluctantly, he reached into his pocket
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Pride

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Ashley
Artist | Hobbyist | Literature
Australia
Just a guy who likes men becoming girls, and anime. Sometimes both. If you want a fanfic done, make sure it's something from my anime list at myanimelist.net/animelist/auti… . However, I don't really do live-action series, western animation or Pokemon (the later of which has been done to death on this site, and I generally don't feel comfortable doing). I also do stories involving original characters, and can write animal/anthro themed tf's too.

Also, please assure me you are over the age of 18 before I do your request. I know this seems like a strange or restrictive instruction, but I really do not want to be making porn for a minor.

MARCH 17TH UPDATE: REQUESTS CLOSED. In no particular order, here are the upcoming requests. (Subject to change)

:icontg-vocals: Subaru into Rem tg. 5000+ words written
:iconjamie260397: Girl into Izuku Midoriya. Draft complete.
:iconlamcynder: Manaka from Lull In The Sea tg (Formerly Akame).

(I will still be open to your suggestions, but will only put them on the above list when I complete two of the above)

Here's a chart of visitor nationalities I thought I'd put up for fun.

Flag Counter

Birthday: July 17th 1989.
Current Residence: Victoria, Australia
Favourite genre of music: Rock, rock pop
Favourite cartoon character: Lenalee, Nene, Haruhi, Mikuru, Teletha, Rei, Shinji, Firo, Tamaki, Edward, Sousuke, Satoshi, Ami, etc.
Interests

Activity


AKA, Agent Gridman leaps in to save the world....from giant CGI monsters.


WARNING: possible SPOILERS for the following...


Golden Kamuy 8-10.


SSSS. Gridman 1.


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Golden Kamuy.


Things are starting to get complex on this show. For one thing, a developing subplot is Hijikata's plans to use the gold to start his own political coup. For this he relies on another former member of the Shinsengumi:



Wait, really? But Shinpachi wasn't a part of-



OH! The real life Shinpachi who used to be captain of the Shinsengumi 2nd unit! Simple mistake!


Also joining them is Ushiyama the undefeated, a man with a strange bump on his forehead who is proving to be the series equivalent of Braun Strowman with his impressive feats of strength and brute force.



Pretty soon their paths cross with this dude:



Connie Springer Mcsideburns here is goofball escape king Shirashi, who has already become entrenched as an ally of Sugimoto's. However, his encounter with Hijikata's crew does add some more complexity to the narrative as his loyalties are tested, which could lead to some significant drama later.


As this happens, our heroes soon find some corpses and soon find out the tattooed serial killer responsible is hiding amongst some whale fishermen-



GOOD GRIEF SUBARU! ITS BEEN THREE YEARS, GET OVER IT!


Anyway, this arc is a bit short but entertaining and at times suspenseful, especially as things get more chaotic in its climax. Despite his meek appearance, serial killer Kazuo turns out to be just as perverted as Testuzou when it comes to murder and death. As repetitive as the trait is, the fact that our heroes are not aware of his identity does add to the tension, and how his arousal is represented makes for some surreal viewing:



Even in its aftermath however, we do have some interesting developments. There is some suspenseful scenes with Tanigaki as he confronts two rogue soldiers (one of which I'm now convinced is literally immortal). However, there is also a surprising revelation that forces our heroes to briefly change their plans and is sure to add some variety to this plot.



SSSS. Gridman 1.


The reason I decided to start watching this is honestly for the silliest reasons: when describing his winner of the 2018 'best finale' award, reviewer Under The Scope brought up that the episode had a last-second 'twist' that tantalised me. So now, I'm giving this animated version of a 1990's Tokusatsu series (Gridman The Hyper Agent) a whirl.


From Studio Trigger (AKA, the guys who keep saving anime), the series starts on a cryptic note with this girl, Akane:



A she stares at the sky, she sees some star break apart, which is followed by a loud banging noise.


Cut to our protagonist Yuta Hibiki, who wakes up with no memory of himself whatsoever.



He was found by the daughter of a junk store owner, and classmate Rikka:



However, the memory loss turns out to not even be the strangest thing that day, for suddenly a robot calling himself Gridman starts speaking to him from a hand-me-down computer, warning Yuta that he must remember his 'mission'.



And to make things stranger, there's a FREAKING GODZILLA MONSTER STATUE OUTSIDE!



To add to the weirdness, Yuta is the only one who can see them. Just as it seems he might be going crazy however, a giant monster attacks the town. IN CGI FORM!



Then, before you can say “Digimon Season 2”, he's suddenly sucked into the computer and merges with Gridman to fight the monster.



If this was any more ingrained in Japanese pop culture, there would be magic girls and tentacles. Then again, considering the monsters in this show, the latter might be plausible.


That said, I am definitely intrigued with the plot with its mysteries and the ominous vibe that seems prevalent (especially as there is virtually no background music until the final battle). There are mysteries established, such as who Yuta is, why no one else can see the Godzilla monster, who is the person creating the monsters, and who is the weird looking guy in the suit who is watching Yuta. Even after the climatic battle it sets up another mystery (more on that next time) which raises a lot of questions. The main Gridman fight is epic in scale, and its appears to not be afraid to kill off people as collateral damage.


As for the characters, Yuta is destined to perhaps be at be the 'self-insert' character considering his blank slate status, but the mystery around his connection to Gridman does add interest. We do get enough information on the other cast members such as nerdy best-friend Watsumi and the peppy perfect girl Akane to understand their personalities. Meanwhile, the animation is hit and miss. The designs are perhaps the least-cartoony I've seen from Trigger, but still have a roughness that stands out, and a lot of the production design is decent enough. The CGI fights may stick out like a sore thumb, but even the action there seems well done. However you also get scenes like a conversation between two characters that seems choppy as if keyframes are missing. I was left confused if those were meant to be cuts or laziness.


That said, this is definitely a promising start and I can't wait to continue.

First of all, 1,2,3,4, THE CELLS AT WORK ARE BACK FOR A SECOND SEASON! www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/… 

But also, guess what Subaru?



YOU ARE GETTING A SEASON TWO! www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/…



Good news for us, but bad news for you...




Yeah, more on that when we do get there.


Anyway, now its time for...

THE ANIME APSM WATCHED RECENTLY: EPISODE 1172!

AKA, Jojo VS Dio and THE WORLD! WRYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY-


WARNING: possible SPOILERS for the following...

Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders 45-48.


*


Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders.


Finally, after nearly 7 weeks of travel, several nations, and over a dozen stands and stand users, we finally get to the final battle with DIO, who has gone Super Saiyan since we last saw him:



And he only becomes more fabulous from here:



Your thoughts Jotaro?



Yeah, figured as much.


The fight that ensues is perhaps one of the most epic final battles of the series to date. Not only are there massive stakes for the Joestars and the rest of the World (pun intended), but it is filled to the brim with all the shonen tropes you expect. Characters are killed or near-killed, power-ups happen out of nowhere (especially Jotaro), and the advantage shifts between either side. Jotaro somehow conjuring the exact abilities he needs to foil Dio's Stand 'The World' is definitely an asspull, but he still comes out of the battle as a stone-cold badass. Meanwhile, after spending the entire season in hiding, Dio is in vintage douchebag form. He just about does every assholish thing under the sun, whether its killing or maiming our heroes, pushing Jotaro into an emotion that isn't just stone-faced intensity, throwing everything from knives to road rollers (yes, really) at our heroes, and screaming his way to memetic immortality whether he cries out-



And last, but not the least-



I don't even care why he even says it. That is just pure comedic gold right there!


Otherwise, despite some asspulls, I cannot really be too mad at this finale. Along with the action, the epilogue is also pretty heartfelt, cathartic and a perfect end to an epic journey.


That said, this is perhaps my favourite incarnation of the franchise, even with some flaws. I just like how every stand battle is different with its many strange Stand users and abilities that have their own strengths and weaknesses. I like how every episode has at least one insane element happening. Despite his reduced role, Joseph was as charismatic and funny as always. I even appreciated Jotaro after a while, who despite his hardened rebel attitude does show considerate care for his friends and kept winning me with his ballsy efforts and apathetic attitude to the strangeness around him. Also, there are the typical colour palette swaps, needless exposition dumps and visualised sound effects you can expect from this series.


That said, there are flaws that did bug me, or I can see annoying others. I did feel a lot of the stuff is repetitive, Dio really only makes an impact near the end, and most of the cast are either bland or wasted (Noriaki and Advol in particular). I didn't mind Joseph as an old man as his English dialogue was funny to hear, but even I felt a little disappointed he wasn't involved in the action as much. Polnareff I can see getting on some people's nerves as the arrogant cassanova/comic relief, but I've seen worse.


That said, I'd definitely give this series a recommendation to anyone who wants to see some insane Shonen-style action.

AKA, Who will Kae choose?


WARNING: possible SPOILERS for the following...

Kiss Him, Not Me 12.

 

The season finale is off to a rocky start when one character's love confession is met with Kae's response of “Sorry, I didn't hear you”. This is simply a contrived effort to delay the inevitable as everyone does manage to confess their feelings anyway. Before then, we're treated to some hijinks as everyone tries to stop one of the characters from getting close with Kae. As much of a funny concept this can be, I'll admit that it can make the saboteurs look like dicks, which may have not been the intention.


When we do get to the inevitable confession from all the characters however, Kae is understandably torn having to pick between 4 guys and a tomboyish manga author. In the end, who she'll end up spending the rest of her life with comes down to a simple solution: date all of them like its a dating simulation.



Whilst it's nice to see the positive traits of each character, if you came into this episode expecting a direct answer to the question “Which boy will she choose”, prepare yourself for disappointment. The inevitable punchline that the series ends on is predictable and even if it was for comedic effect, sells home how Kae has not progressed as a character.


That said, despite its flaws I found this a silly, but entertaining enough comedy. Whilst not the most impressive in animation, it does manage to serve up some attractive character designs that are typical for a romance series. The generally otaku humour may not be to everyones tastes, but managed to make me smile enough for a pass. The characters aren't the most nuanced, but at least have distinctive traits and all have a believable reason to be a chance with Kae. Speaking of the lead heroine, I did find her a little bit atypical of the shoujo heroine role with her vulnerability and kind heart, but her fujoshi streak (coupled with Yu Kobayashi's energetic performance) does at least make her distinct. However, the biggest obstacle I can see for viewers is the premise itself, with its unfortunate implications. The fact our heroes only take notice of Kae when she loses a lot of weight (in the most unrealistic way possible) does make everyone look shallow, no matter how much they try to tell us they have non-physical reasons to like her. There is also the fact the whole “who will Kae pick” question is left with no answer, which can frustrate a lot of people.


If you like silly reverse harem comedies, this might be satisfactory. Otherwise, look elsewhere.

AKA, All right stop/Collaborate and listen/Ice is back with my brand new invention...to kill Jojo!


WARNING: possible spoilers for the following...


Golden Kamuy 4-7.


Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders 41-44.


*


Golden Kamuy.

 

The hunt for the treasure continues and in an interesting move, the way the narrative is handled is not what I'd expect of a show like this. With so many criminals to capture and/or skin, it does feel like something that would take a “tattooed criminal of the week” approach. What Golden Kamuy does instead is alternate between subplots between characters. At one point the treasure subplot is all but abandoned altogether when Saichi and Asirpa hang out at Asirpa's village. Whilst not the most exciting part of the series (and it does slow down the plot), it does add some light-hearted humour and adds to the world-building in an educational way. For example, one of the children's favourite games is to scare each other by holding a special stick and screaming loudly:



But sometimes their plots will intersect with the other cast. For example, Saichi ends up getting captured by the members of the 7th Division lead by the unpredictable Tsurumi. Whilst some of the gorier moments of the rescue attempt do appear to be censored, it did have its cool moments (Not even being tied up can contain Saichi) and Tsurumi is not exactly disappointing me in his mannerisms. I did feel how Saichi tries to do things alone without Asirpa's help seemed a bit strange with me (surely she's proven her value by now), but its not unreasonable with his character.


Later on, another sub plot develops as we focus on this guy:



This is Tanigaki, a member of a group of hunters from the Tohoku region of Northern Japan, known as the Matagi. Whilst initially working with the military, he soon becomes interested in Asirpa's pet wolf Retar (who is one of the last Ezo Wolves in the nation). Wanting to hunt it down as a chance to be welcomed back to his home (as he believes his actions in the war have made him unworthy of returning home), he soon gains the services on this guy:



Don King here is Tetsuzou, an expert hunter who ends up being rather charismatic and one of the more memorable side characters so far. Lets just say he's really, really obsessed with his profession:



Yeah.


That said, despite a slow burn of a start, it slowly becomes interesting as their group and Saichi's group gradually get closer to meeting, and the accumulating wolf hunt did get tense at times.


And now, your “Asirpa-ism” of the week.





Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders.

 

Our heroes have finally arrived at DIO's mansion, where the last of the assassins get ready to finish off our heroes. In particular, there is his butler:



“Sign My Name” here is D'Arby's younger brother, who challenges our heroes to some video games:



If you lose, you become a doll in his creepy doll collection:



Jotaro takes it well:



Whilst not the most violent challenge, it definitely is an intriguing game of wills and strategy as our heroes try to find ways to outsmart D'Arby at his own game. I also liked how one of the characters manages to overcome his own weaknesses and beat D'Arby's stand in an ingenious way. Also, its worth it just for Jotaro to suddenly do his best Daniel Bryan impression:



And yes, Joseph gets in on the act too!



And then there is this dude:



“Ice Ice Baby” is Cool Ice, also known as Vanilla Ice (a reference to the 1990's white rapper/one hit wonder/reality tv show renovator). Whilst the name may sound like a joke, he turns out to be the most brutal and efficient of all the assassins, helped by having the most metal looking stand I have seen:



Whilst named after Eric Clapton's former band (Cream), the fight it engages in is hardly anyone's “Sunshine Of Your Love”. Cream's unpredictability as it vanishes and re-appears from existence adds an extra layer of unease as the situation grows more intense and becomes bleaker. In the end, it ends up being one of the most saddest fights of the series, delivering the biggest casualties of the series. I'll admit I didn't cry (I was more pissed how one character went out so cheaply), but I still felt sad when all was said and done.


And we haven't even fought DIO yet. Uh-oh...

AKA, Agent Gridman leaps in to save the world....from giant CGI monsters.


WARNING: possible SPOILERS for the following...


Golden Kamuy 8-10.


SSSS. Gridman 1.


*


Golden Kamuy.


Things are starting to get complex on this show. For one thing, a developing subplot is Hijikata's plans to use the gold to start his own political coup. For this he relies on another former member of the Shinsengumi:



Wait, really? But Shinpachi wasn't a part of-



OH! The real life Shinpachi who used to be captain of the Shinsengumi 2nd unit! Simple mistake!


Also joining them is Ushiyama the undefeated, a man with a strange bump on his forehead who is proving to be the series equivalent of Braun Strowman with his impressive feats of strength and brute force.



Pretty soon their paths cross with this dude:



Connie Springer Mcsideburns here is goofball escape king Shirashi, who has already become entrenched as an ally of Sugimoto's. However, his encounter with Hijikata's crew does add some more complexity to the narrative as his loyalties are tested, which could lead to some significant drama later.


As this happens, our heroes soon find some corpses and soon find out the tattooed serial killer responsible is hiding amongst some whale fishermen-



GOOD GRIEF SUBARU! ITS BEEN THREE YEARS, GET OVER IT!


Anyway, this arc is a bit short but entertaining and at times suspenseful, especially as things get more chaotic in its climax. Despite his meek appearance, serial killer Kazuo turns out to be just as perverted as Testuzou when it comes to murder and death. As repetitive as the trait is, the fact that our heroes are not aware of his identity does add to the tension, and how his arousal is represented makes for some surreal viewing:



Even in its aftermath however, we do have some interesting developments. There is some suspenseful scenes with Tanigaki as he confronts two rogue soldiers (one of which I'm now convinced is literally immortal). However, there is also a surprising revelation that forces our heroes to briefly change their plans and is sure to add some variety to this plot.



SSSS. Gridman 1.


The reason I decided to start watching this is honestly for the silliest reasons: when describing his winner of the 2018 'best finale' award, reviewer Under The Scope brought up that the episode had a last-second 'twist' that tantalised me. So now, I'm giving this animated version of a 1990's Tokusatsu series (Gridman The Hyper Agent) a whirl.


From Studio Trigger (AKA, the guys who keep saving anime), the series starts on a cryptic note with this girl, Akane:



A she stares at the sky, she sees some star break apart, which is followed by a loud banging noise.


Cut to our protagonist Yuta Hibiki, who wakes up with no memory of himself whatsoever.



He was found by the daughter of a junk store owner, and classmate Rikka:



However, the memory loss turns out to not even be the strangest thing that day, for suddenly a robot calling himself Gridman starts speaking to him from a hand-me-down computer, warning Yuta that he must remember his 'mission'.



And to make things stranger, there's a FREAKING GODZILLA MONSTER STATUE OUTSIDE!



To add to the weirdness, Yuta is the only one who can see them. Just as it seems he might be going crazy however, a giant monster attacks the town. IN CGI FORM!



Then, before you can say “Digimon Season 2”, he's suddenly sucked into the computer and merges with Gridman to fight the monster.



If this was any more ingrained in Japanese pop culture, there would be magic girls and tentacles. Then again, considering the monsters in this show, the latter might be plausible.


That said, I am definitely intrigued with the plot with its mysteries and the ominous vibe that seems prevalent (especially as there is virtually no background music until the final battle). There are mysteries established, such as who Yuta is, why no one else can see the Godzilla monster, who is the person creating the monsters, and who is the weird looking guy in the suit who is watching Yuta. Even after the climatic battle it sets up another mystery (more on that next time) which raises a lot of questions. The main Gridman fight is epic in scale, and its appears to not be afraid to kill off people as collateral damage.


As for the characters, Yuta is destined to perhaps be at be the 'self-insert' character considering his blank slate status, but the mystery around his connection to Gridman does add interest. We do get enough information on the other cast members such as nerdy best-friend Watsumi and the peppy perfect girl Akane to understand their personalities. Meanwhile, the animation is hit and miss. The designs are perhaps the least-cartoony I've seen from Trigger, but still have a roughness that stands out, and a lot of the production design is decent enough. The CGI fights may stick out like a sore thumb, but even the action there seems well done. However you also get scenes like a conversation between two characters that seems choppy as if keyframes are missing. I was left confused if those were meant to be cuts or laziness.


That said, this is definitely a promising start and I can't wait to continue.

Comments


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:iconthenightwolf38:
TheNightWolf38 Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2019
hay

if ure curious about all the anime ive seen here ya go ^^ kitsu.io/users/357969/library?…
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:iconthenightwolf38:
TheNightWolf38 Featured By Owner Feb 26, 2019
Hay I'm sorry if I came off as rude to you


It's just I have a diff way of judging anime and I shouldn't have tried to force them onto you so I'm sorry
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:iconapsm:
apsm Featured By Owner Feb 26, 2019  Hobbyist Writer
Its alright. I feel there isn't enough debate with my reviews so its refreshing to hear another's opinion.
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:iconthenightwolf38:
TheNightWolf38 Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2019
Yeah but I also shouldn't come off as a dick about it either so I apologize
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:iconkittysib:
KittySib Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2019  Hobbyist General Artist
:iconllama-plz:Thank you for the llama!:D
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:iconapsm:
apsm Featured By Owner Feb 22, 2019  Hobbyist Writer
You're welcome.
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:iconfineappletart:
FINEAPPLETART Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2019  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for the Llama!
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:iconapsm:
apsm Featured By Owner Feb 22, 2019  Hobbyist Writer
You're welcome.
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:icongabycoutino:
GabyCoutino Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Nice gallery ♥
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:iconxxiguana2324xx:
XxIguana2324xX Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2018  Student General Artist
Thanks for the llama!
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