Shorty

The new anime and manga thread! [Use Spoiler Tags!]

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

So, after it somehow managed to sneak out on Monday completely under the radar for digital purchase over here in the UK, I can now finally say that I have watched Demon Slayer -Kimetsu no Yaiba- The Movie: Mugen Train. 

Demon-Slayer.jpg

Spoiler

I knew going in that the film clocked on at a bit under two hours, but threw the remote and everything else to the side and just let it suck me in. And I'm so glad that I did. 

I'd leverage the same few criticisms at the film as I might the first season - a little too much comedy at times just given the serious subject matter, some weird pacing - but there's nothing new really there to complain about, except maybe one thing which I could see movie critics aiming at the film but I think is unfair, and that would be that it's not self-contained. I disagree with the criticism to a degree - though it's pacing from the outset pretty much picks up exactly from where the first season ends and doesn't even give much of a recap, which I was quite surprised by, but I'm glad it just means for once we're seeing a studio know their audience - but it did lead to a couple of clunky parts, and did contribute to the weird pacing at parts this time around. For example, the dream sequences felt so long that when they finally took out the dream-conjuring demon Enmu, I thought it was a bit underwhelming and we'd start winding down - without checking how long was left, I genuinely felt like it was pretty much over.

I would've been happy with it at that point to be honest. Music was solid - that great new rendition of Tanjiro's theme in the dream sequence was great, and we had a few renditions I really liked - Nezuko was adorable as ever, Inosuke is still good comic relief, and the visuals in the fights up to that point had been great, not to mention the clear blue sky in Tanjiro's dream sequence in particular being exceptionally beautiful. What a way to communicate how pure of heart your protagonist is without beating us over the head with exposition. 

Thankfully, though, there was more to come. 

Having that Upper Three turn up out of the blue suddenly put me on edge, and I wasn't sure which direction they wanted to go in with Rengoku. We had a *lot* of backstory thrown our way, but I had definitely grown to really like the character (I mean, big dude who is kind but strong, what's not to like about characters like this?), so it was a coin flip for me as to what would happen. Which was great, as I came in not expecting much in terms of stakes, even knowing this was a continuation of the first season, just because of how anime movies have programmed me to think that way and because Rengoku was only introduced in earnest here. 

That fight delivered and then some. I think it's quite a feat for me to say it's up there with the climax Tanjiro vs Rui from Episode 19, considering it only had 90 minutes or so to build up to it. Animation was unsurprisingly brilliant, but it just kept going, and going, and going, and the stakes just got higher and higher, and the music just got better and better throughout.

The electric guitar riffs, the synths, the auto-tuned vocals, and the steady but foreboding beat to introduce Akaza gave me chills, but I'd be lying if I said the highlight of the fight for me wasn't the triumphant and heroic blaring brass and the rest of the orchestra for Rengoku. So many times in the track, especially in Part 2, you get the electronic and modern music of Akaza clashing directly with and flowing in and out of the orchestrated music of Rengoku, it's an excellent composition. I thought it was annoying when Akaza kept asking him to join - it was obviously never going to happen - but you got a sense of fear from him, and it was the clash of ideals symbolised by the music here which really fleshed out the scene for me. 

Favourite track has to be the final wind Rengoku gets:

Brilliant stuff. Expected him to stay around for longer, but then the movie made a point of reminding you of the horrors that Tanjiro saw when he returned home at the start of all of this, so I don't think it was totally out of left field that he went down, even if I personally wanted to see some anime bs and for him to somehow survive. 

Outside of spoilers, I just loved how you could see on the screen how much effort, money, and time had been poured into this. Something I thought the first season did well was manage its animation budget and smartly make use of 3D, but it was still very obvious when it was doing so. Here I can barely remember seeing it used outside of backgrounds, for the train, and certain fight animations / assets, and most if not all of the "normal" scenes where you might expect to see 3D animation step in to just help manage the budget was taken up by 2D work instead, and I loved it for it. 

After seeing this, I'm happy that I made the decision to go anime-only and just be patient. As much as I want to see the rest of it play out - and obviously the biggest concern I have is not having it spoiled choosing to wait on the anime - for me the fight animation quality from ufotable and the score from Go Shiina is so integral to my enjoyment of Demon Slayer that I am more than happy to wait, even at the risk of being spoiled before it all comes to an end. 

I think it was a big decision, and maybe an even bigger risk, for this movie to continue the story of the first season rather than do what every pretty much other giant franchise in the industry seems to do, which is make a hype-focused but totally inconsequential film in the context of the franchise that is either not canon at all or is in some weird pseudo-canon limbo. This film was rightly rewarded for taking this risk by becoming the highest-grossing anime movie to date worldwide and the biggest film in Japanese cinema too, and so long as the quality is sustained, I struggle to see why the next Demon Slayer movie couldn't outperform this one.

I'm actually really curious now to see if the anime adaptation will end on a film. I'd have to imagine that's the plan, because unless there's a massive downturn in popularity before we reach that point, it would do bonkers numbers. 

Loved the film, it was well worth the wait! If for whatever reason you haven't checked out Demon Slayer, do yourself a favour and go watch Season 1 (it's available to stream as part of a subscription on Netflix, Funimation, and Crunchyroll) then check this film out. For me, I think it's head and shoulders above the other more typical modern shonen giant we have at the moment - sorry My Hero - and is well worth your time! 

Edited by Julius
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sony have today completed the acquisition of Crunchyroll for $1.175 billion. 

Full press release here

So the aim is creating a "unified anime subscription", which is good to have confirmed. I just hope this means there's a major rebrand with all shows available on one platform which works as well as the Crunchyroll app/subtitles/everything else, and not the mess that Funimation often is. 

Think this will prove to be an absolute steal for Sony over the next decade, and hopefully they'll see some more stability outside of gaming because of this. Just make sure it works well and they could close to monopolise the western anime streaming industry. 

Now if we can please finally see some strings being pulled to secure UK streaming rights for series which are way too big to not be on anything (such as all of the old Dragon Ball stuff) and tear down some of those 'Not available in your country' Funimation error messages, that'd be great! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, Julius said:

Sony have today completed the acquisition of Crunchyroll 

This is a conflict because I play Nintendo...

...but I like subs. And crunchie. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chapter 364 of Berserk is coming out next month on the 10th. Think there's a good chance this will have been Miura's final work. 

Think it's around the time that the Berserk fair is going on, so I hope we get a proper update on what the future plans are for the series. Doubt I'll have read all of the manga by then and be caught up, but still, it's nice to see :smile:

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

All the Anime are accepting pre-orders for the Neon Genesis Evangelion ultimate edition on the 19th at 5pm. Entire series, Death and Rebirth and End of Evangelion on blu ray in a nice little box. If anyone is interested.

Edited by martinist
  • Like 1
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 09/08/2021 at 11:30 PM, Julius said:

Sony have today completed the acquisition of Crunchyroll for $1.175 billion. 

Whilst I dislike the idea of Sony/FUNImation having a monopoly, having a combined library of Funimation and Crunchyroll will be nice.There's a rumour it might even be included with PlayStation Plus (in a higher tier) which would be handy.

19 hours ago, martinist said:

All the Anime are accepting pre-orders for the Neon Genesis Evangelion ultimate edition on the 19th at 5pm. Entire series, Death and Rebirth and End of Evangelion on blu ray in a nice little box. If anyone is interested.

Speaking of, I just noticed the 3.0 movie is available on Amazon Prime.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've watched some great anime over the last couple of weeks. 

cowboybebop.jpg

First, I finally watched Cowboy Bebop. I've tried to watch the series several times now (think this was my fourth attempt?) but for whatever reason, it just never clicked. I would really enjoy the first episode but then my enjoyment of it would just slowly peter out by the time I got to Episode 3 or 4, and while I did feel a little similar this time around, getting to Episode 5 (Ballad of Fallen Angels) and being introduced to Vicious was when I finally found myself hooked.

Surprised by just how many standout individual episodes there are, by how much I loved the whole cast (I was worried Ed would be annoying, but she was anything but, and there were several times where I'd burst out laughing at something her or Ein did), and the way it managed to blend so many different genres - of music and storytelling - into its web of episodes. Mushroom Samba and Cowboy Funk were downright hilarious, but then on the flip side of that, the show deals with so many heavy topics - existentialism, loneliness, dealing with your past and what defines family - in such a unique and ultimately relatable way that it plays your emotions like a damn fiddle by the end. I was on the verge of tears at the end of Hard Luck Woman

Music is spot on, I knew that would be the case going in anyways as I love myself a jazzy soundtrack, but man the vocal tracks well and truly surprised me too - I've been listening to them a lot since finishing the show. Call Me Call Me is definitely my favourite, but shout out to tracks like Fantasie Sign, Rain, and Words That We Couldn't Say. And obviously goes without saying that Real Folk Blues is top tier too. 

Freaking loved it. Got to pick up the film so I can give that a watch! 

love-is-war-1140x666.jpg

I also finished the first season of Kaguya-sama: Love is War. Incredibly endearing cast and just an overall fun time and take on high school romance, really looking forward to checking out the second season. There are naturally some heartfelt moments, but if anything it feels like a parody of just how stupid some romantic comedies can be, and it takes it all the way. 

Love Dramatic describes the show perfectly and is a great OP :p

 

millennium-actress-1200-1200-675-675-cro

Lastly, I got around to watching Millennium Actress after it's sat on my shelf for around a year now (there was a new release early last year with a new dub, which was the first time it came to Blu-ray over here).

My experience with Satoshi Kon is kind of limited - got about halfway through Paprika at one point before I ended up dropping off (which to be clear wasn't the film's fault, I started it stupidly late and like what I've experienced of his other works, it kind of needs your full attention to be completely enjoyed) and watched Perfect Blue for the first time a few months ago, which is probably one of the most intense animated anythings I've watched. 

I'd heard good things going into Millennium Actress...and boy did it live up to the billing, I think I even prefer it over Perfect Blue, which I thought was great. Without spoiling anything, Millennium Actress tells the story of a retired actress as she reflects on her life and years in the film industry, and it leans on a similar editing style to drive the story and film forwards as seen in Perfect Blue (if you've seen them both you'll probably know what I mean), which like with Perfect Blue takes a little while to adapt to I found, but what amazed me was the execution of the editing, especially in its transitions. I lost count of the number of shots where I was stunned, and two scenes in particular which blew me away were...

Spoiler

...the running sequence in Hokkaido where the shots of running sequences from earlier in the film were spliced in to perfectly convey what was happening while still emphasising just how well and truly lost Chiyoko was becoming. 

And that parting shot when Chiyoko passes, the visual metaphor for her flying off into the aftermath in the space shuttle. *Chef's kiss*

Not for the first time watching a Satoshi Kon film, I found myself with my jaw agape in total awe of some of the things achieved in this film, not just on a storytelling level - which I think was great - but specifically on a technical level, too. 

I know I've got more films (and a show) from him to watch, but this is going to be a tough one to top. Highly recommend it to anyone who hasn't watched it yet! 

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 14/08/2021 at 12:00 AM, martinist said:

All the Anime are accepting pre-orders for the Neon Genesis Evangelion ultimate edition on the 19th at 5pm. Entire series, Death and Rebirth and End of Evangelion on blu ray in a nice little box. If anyone is interested.

https://evangelion.alltheanime.com/#ultimate-edition

pre-orders are live. Only 1500 being produced.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The second part of the final season of Attack on Titan will begin airing in January 2022. 

Quote

[Broadcast information]
 "Attack on Titan The Final Season" Episode 76 "Condemnation"
 Broadcast on NHK General TV in January 2022!

Before the new broadcast, a special omnibus that looks back on the advance will also be broadcast as an original animation (OAD) that is talked about from the perspectives of Levi, Ani, Mikasa, etc.!

These are going to be a loooooooong five months of avoiding spoilers :laughing: many are speculating that this will be 12-13 episodes, which seems like a whole lot to cover the remaining 23 chapters, especially when it seemed to be heading in a pretty action-heavy direction with Episode 75. 

All I've heard about the rest of AoT is that the ending was a bit divisive (what ending isn't these days, seriously?) and that Isayama himself felt like he might have rushed the final chapter a bit, but given just how much leeway there might be here, I have to wonder if that could be fixed somewhat in the anime. I was actually wondering recently if having something adapted while it's ongoing could end up with the creator pacing things with an adaptation in mind, especially when drawing things to a close, so can't say I'm envious of him in that regard. 

Either way... I'm hyped :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Shenmue anime trailer:

Left hanging waiting for that main theme to kick in :cry:

Looks really good though, hope it's solid and we see it continued. I still haven't played III, but after what I've heard and read about it, it's definitely on the back burner, and I'm finding it hard to imagine IV is released as a game at this point. In which case, would love to see it continued as an anime. Again, so long as the music comes back. 

Obviously the true dream would be the Yakuza folk over at RGG bring allowed to remake the originals or make IV with Suzuki's oversight, but you know...

Edited by Julius
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A new DragonBall Super Hero trailer has dropped. Going for some 2D-3D style. I think it looks pretty nice, although it starting to look more like a video game and the games look more like the show.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

The son of a friend is recovering from a stroke (21 years old..), but he's able to read, and was asking for some manga recommendations. I can't really help here, as I'm out of the loop on anime, and never really looked into manga in the first place. Some recommendations from you guys? I think he's looking for shonen stuff (edit: "School/slice of life/ superpower/action/ drama/fantasy/martial arts"). Probably not too obscure, but also not too popular, or he'll have already read it. I mentioned The Promised Neverland as I remember it being mentioned here and sounding interesting, but he's already read that, to name an example.

He's open to reading graphic novels too.

Edited by Sméagol

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Fullmetal Alchemist is usually a safe bet. For more recent stuff, there's My Hero Academia, Jujutsu Kaisen, Demon Slayer, and Attack on Titan, but all of those are well known, so he may have read them already.

For relatively less known stuff, there's Dr.Stone (young scientist wakes up in a post-apocalyptic world, uses science to restart civilization. There's a Shonen pace and logic to the whole thing), Heroic Legend of Arslan (which is more "medieval epic" than "shonen", but it's pretty good), or one of the Zelda mangas (which need no introduction). I'd also recommend Silver Spoon (which is slice-of-life), but I don't think I've ever seen that one published in Europe.

Those are the ones that popped into my head.

Edited by Jonnas
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 18/08/2021 at 12:59 AM, Julius said:

I've watched some great anime over the last couple of weeks. 

cowboybebop.jpg

First, I finally watched Cowboy Bebop. I've tried to watch the series several times now (think this was my fourth attempt?) but for whatever reason, it just never clicked. I would really enjoy the first episode but then my enjoyment of it would just slowly peter out by the time I got to Episode 3 or 4, and while I did feel a little similar this time around, getting to Episode 5 (Ballad of Fallen Angels) and being introduced to Vicious was when I finally found myself hooked.

Now get yo' ass some Outlaw Star, similar principle, but better in every way with exception of the music.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 09/10/2021 at 11:26 AM, EEVILMURRAY said:

Now get yo' ass some Outlaw Star, similar principle, but better in every way with exception of the music.

Outlaw Star is great, but better..? I’m not sure man.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Outlaw Star had some pretty good arcs. I like the space race arc myself. Had a few wierd episodes like that possessed cactus and the giant bug in the sewer? Great series though, used to watch it all the time whenever it was on TV.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cowboy Bebop is coming back to Netflix next week to get everyone ready for the live-action adaptation:

I just finished watching it back in August on YouTube in a playlist with an episode missing, go figure! Something similar happened with Hunter x Hunter finally landing on our shores after I watched it too...

...maybe this is how I get Dragon Ball to come to UK streaming services? :p

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Promotional Video for Part 2 of Attack on Titan's Final Season, starting 9th January 2022:

Time to go find me a bunker to hide in! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites