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Caraniel's Snowy Winter Anime Preview 2011 ~brought to you by the power of de-icer~ Watch

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    (Original post by Aiko)
    OVAs are generally shorter, but there isn't a definitive rule stating as such. For example, LOGH is an OVA series that's over 100 episodes. The format was introduced to cater for the sheer demand for animation in Japan, which couldn't be catered for on the television alone. The bonus is that producers have more freedom with OVAs and therefore you can expect works that are more avant garde and experimental such as FLCL. :smile:
    The more you know, I guess

    Just watched the little opening bit of Dragon Crisis... the OP REALLY annoys me... Also just watched the beginning of Level-E - Awesome OP on this one <3
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    (Original post by LastLordofTime)
    The more you know, I guess

    Just watched the little opening bit of Dragon Crisis... the OP REALLY annoys me... Also just watched the beginning of Level-E - Awesome OP on this one <3
    Yes, Level E's OP is great, the best of the season, in my opinion. :smile:
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    Wolverine
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    Website: http://bd-dvd.sonypictures.jp/marvelanime/
    Animation Studio: MADHOUSE / MARVEL Entertainment
    Japanese Airdate: 7th January 2011
    Seiyuu: Rikiya Koyama
    PV: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_k8Vq8a5P9Q


    (Original post by Summary:)
    Next adaptation in the four-part Marvel Anime project.
    Wolverine is a mutant, possessing animal-keen senses, enhanced psychical capabilities, three retracting bone claws on each hand and a healing factor that allows him to recover from virtually any wound, disease or toxin at a accelerated rate.
    I really wanted to like Iron Man, and I honestly did try! But the show was just so sloppily thrown to together that it was extremely hard to enjoy it and I gave up after 5 episodes. As such I’m very unsure about this next Marvel/Madhouse production, because if it’s as poorly written as Iron Man was its dead in the water. Still I do want to give it a go, because I did like X-Men & Wolverine back in the day and would like to see Madhouse’s spin on the character.


    Well it’s a better start than to Iron-Man I'll give it that, but still this first episode of Wolverine didn't really do much for me because it was so ordinary! There's nothing here to really mark Wolverine out from a myriad of similar shows - it’s like MADHOUSE are relying on the MARVEL tag and its existing fan base to sell the show.....it feels lazy, and that’s not something I'm accustomed to feeling from MADHOUSE. I don't know if I approve of turning Logan into some hopelessly romantic bishie who will spend the entire series running after one woman stuck in a terribly generic "my yakuza father is forcing me to marry a complete prat" plotline. The action was reasonable I suppose, but the dialogue is cheesy and the plot feels dated.....I'm not feeling terribly enthusiastic :dontknow:

    The animation is pretty decent though - much better than Iron-Man, although Logan's mouth occasionally seemed to be operating independently from the rest of his body at times :erm: Voice acting was ok too and I really quite liked the music. The OP & ED animation was great, but the ED weirdly made me feel like they had a competition in the office and couldn't pick a winner, so they ended up just sticking everyone's entries together - it’s really quite disjointed.

    I feel like I'm being extremely negative :s: I am going to give Wolverine another few episodes before bailing - it certainly hooked me more than Iron-Man did and I managed about 5 episodes of it before giving it up as a bad job! :laugh:



    Kore wa Zombie Desu ka? (Is this a zombie?)

    Spoiler:
    Show



    Website: http://newtype.kadocomic.jp/zombie/
    Animation Studio: Studio DEEN
    Japanese Airdate: 10th January 2011
    Seiyuu: Iori Nomizu, Junji Majima, Hiroyuki Yoshino, Ai Shimizu
    Director: Takaomi Kanesaki
    PV: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYopij1eR8s

    ~*~Available Simulcast on Crunchyroll~*~


    (Original post by Summary: )
    Anime adaptation of Shinichi Kimura’s light novel series.
    Aikawa Ayumu is a normal high school boy. One day he is killed by a serial killer and revived as a zombie by a necromancer named Eucliwood Hellscythe. He starts to serve Eu as her guard but he happens to deprive the mahou shoujo Haruna of her magic power. Haruna orders Ayumu to fight against the anti-mahou shoujo system "Megalo" in her place.
    I really don’t know what to say about this series. The generic moe is oozing off the screen, but that wee girl has a fecking chainsaw and I find that kind of awesome! The concept sounds like one of those “suppose we’d better think of an excuse to have all these cute girls in ridiculous costumes with superpowers” kind of deal. Studio DEEN never inspire confidence and I haven’t heard much about the source material. I’ll give the show a look, but really think this will be terrible!


    Oh god this was a riot! :mmm: It was all going pretty normally for the most part - snarky male lead being generic.....and then suddenly mayhem! The show is completely over the top and uses comedy violence to optimum effect (the protagonist is already dead after all!) - in this first episode alone Ayumu gets run over by a truck (which propels him through the air and out of his clothes), stabbed by a demonic bear, cut in half by a magical girl, has his home taken over by two demanding girls, attacked by a perverted crayfish and forced to undergo a mahou-shoujo transformation sequence (complete with ultra close-up panty-shots!)....it’s all very weird, but damn funny at the same time! ! :laugh: I don't have much faith in there being much of a plot, but I did laugh at this first episode so think I'll be watching a few more episodes of this for the amusement value :yes:

    The animation is surprisingly decent here considering this is 'lol DEEN', and there's some really quite decent direction in the action scenes (even if there is a huge focus on the panty-shots) and that transformation sequence was priceless! Voice acting was pretty good too and the BGM fit the show well. I even liked the OP, although the ED was pretty tragic!

    Will be keeping this on for a while, to see if they manage to keep the comedy interesting and fresh, or if it gets repetitive. A surprisingly good episode regardless.
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    Dragon Crisis!
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    Website: http://dragoncrisis.jp/
    Animation Studio: Studio DEEN
    Japanese Airdate: 10th January 2011
    Seiyuu: Hiro Shimono, Rie Kugimiya, Yui Horie, Yukana
    Director: Hideki Tachibana (H20~Footprints in the Sand~)
    PV: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cwkyXswK-lo

    ~*~Available Simulcast on Crunchyroll~*~


    (Original post by Summary:)
    Anime adaptation of Kaya Kizaki’s light novel series.
    A normal high school boy Kisaragi Ryuji's peaceful life is turned into an adventure by the return of his second cousin Eriko. Ryuji and Eriko seize a relic box from a black broker. In the box, they find a red dragon girl named Rose. In order to protect Rose from the black organization, Ryuji decides to fight using his power as a relic handler.
    More DEEN, more genericness – although I am kind of surprised that JC Staff didn’t grab this series instead, looks like their kind of show. Some very well known seiyuu on board, but they sound to be playing their usual bread & butter roles in the PV unfortunately. Struggling to think of anything positive to say here, so just going to give up!


    Folks Yumekui Merry just lost its crown for 'most generic anime' this season - Dragon Crisis! is even more tropetastic :mmm: You want a bland male lead who's wonderfully domesticated, a doormat & voiced by Hiro Shimono? - Check. How about a big breasted onee-san that hangs all over the bland male lead and drags him into her zany schemes? - Check. Shy classmate pining after bland male lead? - present and accounted for. Now, what about a loli in a box with a severely limited vocabulary?? - Well what do you know, also check......plus that loli in a box is voiced by Rei Kugimiya just for bonus points on the generic scale! :sigh:

    It’s a pity it’s all so generic (and Rei Kugimiya was reduced to squeaking 'Ryuuji, Ryuuji, Ryuuji' all the bloody time :dry:), because I quite liked the art style & music used in the episode. However no amount of interesting art & good music could make this worth watching for me, mainly due to premise & script being so lacking (in addition to the 'Ryuuji' spam, there was a massive amount of 'Ooh Lost Precious!' going on).

    So not keeping Dragon Crisis on (in case you hadn't already guessed), this episode made Yumekui Merry look like the height of original thought! :laugh:




    Level E
    Spoiler:
    Show



    Website: http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/anime/level-e/
    Animation Studio: Studio Pierrot & David Production
    Japanese Airdate: 10th January 2010
    Seiyuu: Daisuke Namikawa, Masaya Takasuka, Takehito Koyasu, Fumihiko Tachiki
    Director: Toshiyuki Kato (Code-E, Full Moon O Saga****e)
    PV: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mRclK3t_jwk

    ~*~Available Simulcast on Crunchyroll~*~


    (Original post by Summary: )
    Anime adaptation of Yoshihiro Togashi’s (Hunter x Hunter, Yu Yu Hakushou) shounen manga series.
    Tsutsui Yukitaka is a freshman who has finally convinced his parents that he is ready to live on his own. When he arrives at his new apartment, he is surprised to find that someone has arrived before him; a young man who claims that he is an alien and that he is suffering from amnesia. A series of short stories involving aliens on Earth.
    Now this I am really interested in. At first going only on the promo art, I thought it would be some high concept sci-fi, but having looked more into the series it seems that this will be much more lighthearted and entertaining. David Production are a small studio but they’ve put out some decent shows like Book of Bantorra (although I think I’m in the minority that actually liked that series), and they’re working with Pierrot who are probably the most experienced studio when it comes to adapting shounen manga. Level E seems to be in fairly safe hands, so I’m quite confident that this will be a good watch.


    Oh yes, this was a really great start to this show. It’s pretty standard odd couple kind of stuff, with Yukitaka being all loud & shouty in contrast with blondie's calm sarcasm - but the writing is such that rather than feeling over done its really very funny and fresh. I did like the mix of comedy & drama, but feel that the transitions could have been a touch smoother - it was slightly jarring to go from hilarious CGI puppets to angsty bishie under the cherry blossoms in such a short space of time. Still that’s a very minor issue, as overall I really enjoyed this first episode - the characters are fun to watch interact and I am liking the 'Men in Black' feel of the premise; plenty of potential in this show!

    In terms of animation, it’s a slightly dated style but that just adds to the charm of the series in my opinion, Perriot & David Production seem to be doing a very solid job. I loved the OP to bits - fantastic song, and really interesting technicolor animation; best OP of the season so far easily! The ED wasn't bad either, but the OP was much better. Voice acting is very solid, Daisuke Namikawa is great at blondie's playful banter & Masaya Takasuka manages to keep Yukitaka's shouting at a level that's not annoying......plus the narration is by Gendo Ikari himself (Fumihiko Tachiki) - how could that not be awesome!?

    Definitely keeping Level E on and I'm quite interested in blogging the show too - shall have to see episode 2 before deciding though.




    Kimi ni Todoke 2nd Season
    Spoiler:
    Show



    Website: http://www.ntv.co.jp/kiminitodoke/index.html
    Animation Studio: Production I.G.
    Japanese Airdate: 4th January 2011
    Seiyuu: Daisuke Namikawa, Mamiko Noto, Aya Hirano, Yuuichi Nakamura
    Director: Hiro Kaburaki (Kimi ni Todoke, Welcome to the NHK)
    PV:


    (Original post by Summary:)
    2nd season of the anime based on Karuho Shiina’s manga.
    Kuronuma Sawako is completely misunderstood by her classmates. Her timid and sweet demeanor is often mistaken for malicious behavior. This is due to her resemblance to the ghost girl from "The Ring", which has led her peers to give her the nickname Sadako. Longing to make friends and live a normal life, she is naturally drawn to Kazehaya Shouta, the most popular guy in class, whose "100% refreshing" personality earns great admiration from Sawako.
    I really liked season one of Kimi ni Todoke – sometimes a bit of pure shoujo fluff is nice. It’s a slow paced show, but the characters are fun and the production values were excellent – so I’m looking forward to more of the same from this second season. Sawako is made of ‘d’awwww~!


    Well after last week's Kurumi recap episode I was more than ready for another trip into Sawako's shoujo psyche, and this episode is definitely more of a direct continuation from the end of S1 than any sort of sequel. It’s more of the same basically - if you liked Kimi ni Todoke's 1st season, you'll like this one as well. Sawako is still painfully shy, Kurumi is still a delightful *****, Ryuu, Ayane & Chizuru are still awesome, Pin is still a prick & Kazehaya is still Mr Nice guy with very little other personality traits. This whole episode was about Sawako deliberating about giving Kazehaya chocolates on Valentine’s Day - agonising over what this simple act would mean.......classic Kimi ni Todoke, Sawako & Kazehaya can't do anything without making a song & dance about it! Still it was pretty cute (if completely frustrating) to watch Sawako agonise over things.

    Production values are every bit as good as S1 - all the pretty soft art & explosion of bubbles/sparkles/flowers are back, as are the cast (with the addition of Mamoru Miyano as a new character). New OP & ED are excellent, but not as immediately awesome as S1's songs.

    Shall be watching all of this sequel for sure, let’s just hope it doesn't take all season for Sawako & Kazehaya to do more than blush at each other and brush hands!!
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    Fannymotion have confirmed they're streaming Fractale. :yes:

    [edit] Their 360p eyeblight webrips are now available to non-US fans courtesy of Horrible Subs, but I'll wait on whatever group first releases in HD.
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    Fractale
    Spoiler:
    Show



    Website: http://fractale-anime.com/
    Animation Studio: A-1 Pictures & Ordet
    Japanese Airdate: 13th January 2011
    Seiyuu: Yu Kobayashi, Kana Hanazawa, Minami Tsuda, Shintaro Asanuma
    Director: Yutaka Yamamoto (Lucky Star, Kannagi)
    PV: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbpD4IJmcGw


    (Original post by Summary:)
    Original production airing in the noitaminA timeslot.
    The story takes place in an island, where a "Fractale System" is beginning to collapse. One day, Crane finds an injured girl called Phryne under a cliff. She disappears leaving a pendant. Crane sets out for a journey with the girl-shaped avatar Nessa to look for Phryne and discovers the secret of the Fractale System.
    There is some really gorgeous art floating round for this series – and I really like the almost Last Exile kind of feel some of it has. Yutaka Yamamoto is a director whose reputation preceeds him, but not really on the merits of his past productions……that being said, I have the utmost faith in the noitaminA timeslot – its never really failed to deliver on some level. I’m feeling positive about Fractale.


    This was an intriguing start. I loved the world setting & concept, and I also loved the Ghibli-esq feel of the show at times, but at the same time I'm pretty unimpressed with the characters at the moment. The world of Fractale is one where actual human interaction is rare; instead people communicate through avatars (bloody weird looking ones at that!), even keeping up the pretence of family via these 'dopplers' while the actual members are living in completely different places. It’s a strange world as no one seems to need to work, rather just being part of the Fractale system and observing its rules of something akin to 'worship', people receive a stipend upon which they can live quite comfortable, if very isolated lives. As I said, the world set up is fascinating. However the characters aren't, being rather boring with quite clichéd reactions - the male lead all but has a coronary upon seeing a girl (although since he barely ever sees real humans I suppose this reaction is pretty understandable) and that trio of 'villains' were just unbelievably bumbling and hammy. Still, we've got time to get to know the characters, episode one was really more about setting up the world and it did that very well.

    They've changed the art slightly for the anime - specifically the colouring of the female characters hair from purple to a more normal brown & red; I definitely prefer the promo art's designs, but other changes are minimal. The landscapes are gorgeous, and the animation is very smooth - it’s a very attractive series and most definitely pulls its inspiration from Studio Ghibli's work. The music is very orchestral and grand - it’s sometimes a touch too much given how nothing particularly epic happens on screen! I loved the acid trip of an OP - a dazzling kaleidoscope of colour with pretty catchy music. The ED was a surprise since its a song I know well "Down by the Salley Gardens", a pretty little ditty which is sung entirely in amusing engrish here.

    It’s a pretty solid start for Fractale, I'm not completely wowed by it but there is a metric tonne of potential in this show and I'm quite excited to explore more of this world. Definitely looking forward to more.




    Hourou Musuko (Wandering Son)

    Spoiler:
    Show



    Website: http://www.houroumusuko.jp/
    Animation Studio: AIC
    Japanese Airdate: 13th January 2011
    Seiyuu: Asami Seto, Kosuke Hatakeyama, Aki Toyosaki, Kaoru Mizuhara, Keiji Fujiwara
    Director: Ei Aoki (Ga-Rei Zero, Girls Bravo)
    PV: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pejectC1SVU

    ~*~Available Simulcast on Crunchyroll~*~


    (Original post by Summary: )
    Anime adaptation of Takako Shimura’s manga series airing in the noitaminA timeslot.
    Shuicihi Nitori appears to be a shy and quiet preteen boy, when he transfers to a new school he quickly makes friends with the tomboyish Yoshino Takatsuki who sits next to him. It soon becomes apparent that both Shucihi and Yoshino are more than simply a sensitive boy and masculine girl, they both are transgendered. Together they decide to take the first steps toward becoming the people they want to be.
    The other noitaminA series this season, and this one has some really interesting art going on. I wouldn’t have expected this kind of animation style or subject matter from a studio like AIC, but I’m very pleasantly surprised. Wandering Son looks like high melodrama potential, and it could be a disaster if dealt with in a heavy handed manner, but the PV seems to promise that this isn’t the case. I’m really interested in seeing how this sensitive subject material is portrayed.


    This was an impressive, if slightly confusing opening episode. We seem to have landed into the middle of the story as all the characters clearly have established relationships already, and those of us who have not read the manga don't have the advantage of knowing that back-story or some of the events mentioned in this episode. However even though I floundered about a bit trying to remember who was who for a while, I was impressed by how well Wandering Son fleshed out its characters in such a short space of time. I was also very impressed with the atmosphere the show creates - it’s almost melancholic in its approach, very serious and gentle in its portrayal of the issues faced by these transgendered characters. Wandering Son is not going to be a light-hearted fun anime - I can already feel it tugging on my heartstrings; but at the same time it isn't gloomy and depressive either, it’s just very serious from start to finish.

    The art style is unique - very soft and pastel with lots and lots of white highlights so the characters almost seem to have a polished finish to them. It’s an interesting effect, but very pretty and the animation is wonderfully smooth (love those cherry blossoms). The dialogue is straightforward and cuts straight to the heart of things since the majority of it is internal monologue, the voice acting is suitably subdued and measured for the most part, fitting well with the atmosphere - the music also adds well to this (although the OP & ED are both solid but nothing special).

    I'm very impressed with this first episode, definitely keeping Wandering Son on as I'm interested in seeing what direction the story is going to move in.




    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


    Okay! So thats the end of the First Impressions posts for Winter 2011! Interesting mix of shows - some surprises too. Hope there's something there for everyone, but if there isn't it won't be long till Spring! :laugh:

    I'll be posting my top picks at the end of the season, so until then~! :ciao:
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    Just watched Fractale myself and pretty much agree with your comments. The characters are a bit on the unimpressive side, but so far I prefer miss-disappears-alot over the magically-appearing-girl , but since the latter has only just (literally) popped up I'm just being presumptive.

    There's just something very sinister about the whole Fractale system and the world in which they live, which I hope will be a major part of the series. Data Narcotics also sound interesting, which could be explored somewhat, but I'd be fine with it just being something to add depth to the world.

    It's definitely interesting, pretty and has the occasional funny moment, which I look forward to.
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    Oh some info on Supernatural's release schedule

    Blu-ray?DVD ?SUPEARNATURAL THE ANIMATION?
    ??????????/?22?
    ?2?23??Vol.1-3??1-6 ?? ???????Vol.1??1-2 ????
    ?3?9??Vol.4-6??7-12 ?? ???????BOX1??3-12 ????
    ?3?23??Vol.7-9??13-18 ?? ??????
    ?4?6??Vol.10-11??19-22 ?? ???????BOX2??13-22 ????

    Episodes 1-6 will be available from February 23rd
    Episodes 7-12 from March 9th
    Episodes 13 to 18 on March 23rd and the final four episodes on April 6th (woo my birthday!).
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    Ooh, good news there Pretty much 6 episodes every 2 weeks, I think? Apart from the last release, of course. Really can't wait for it
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    Better get this out-of-the-way before I start into Spring first impressions! Nearly completely forgot about it! Winter was an interesting season, I kept on a lot more shows than I usually do in the smaller seasons, easily filling 10 spaces (with shows left over!). The only shows I have running over into Spring are Gosick & Beelzebub (and the finale of Madoka Magica), everything else ended within a season. Anyway here’s my top 10 from the past season.

    10. IS: Inifite Statos
    More a guilty pleasure than anything else, IS was shallow and had no real point to it beyond building Ichika a harem, but it was still really entertaining. It’s a pity the show didn’t take more advantage of the rather good CGI it employed for its brief IS battles. The series would have been much better if it had of played up its only real original selling point – the mecha musume, but instead we got the same old tired harem antics. IS was watchable, but ultimately forgettable.

    9. Gosick
    I had expected much more from Gosick, but was ultimately disappointed. The shows single saving grace is the character of Victorique – she’s a lot of fun, and really very cute. However her male foil is an utter chore to watch – Kujo is the personification of the stereotypical loser male lead. The writing is also very overcooked, at times it seems that Victorique can only solve the ‘mysteries’ because she’s been handed the script before hand, and the rest of the time the puzzle is so simple I have it solved well before she does. Yet for some reason I’m still watching – I think rather than the show improving I’ve simply adjusted my expectations and got used to its inaneness. Victorique is still cute though and the OP & ED are really good – that must count for something!

    8. Mitsudomoe Zouryouchuu!
    The sequel to Mitsudomoe may have only been eight episodes, but that was all it needed to take the formula from the 1st season and improve it. It wasn’t all brilliant by any stretch of the imagination, but quite a lot of the time the jokes hit their marks & made me laugh in earnest – and that’s all I really want from a comedy series. The weird character designs really grew on me, and I ended up liking the entire wacky cast (although Mitsuba remained a favourite). I’m quite glad the 2nd season was only eight episodes though, that was all the show really needed to wrap things up nicely – any more and we would have been retreading the same ground as S1.

    7. Kore Wa Zombie Desu Ka?
    It’s a pity KoreZom went all srsbns mid-season, that kind of ruined the show as the ‘plot’ was incredibly contrived & weak. The series was at its best in the first few episodes, where I was genuinely laughing aloud at its stupidity – you just don’t see your male protagonist turn into a magical girl, battle flying whales with a pink chainsaw & still manage to look badass very often! KoreZom knew its tropes and played them up to 11, however it was also restricted by them and introducing a plot & angst was one of the worst things it could have done – I would have had it much higher up my list if it had of stuck to stupid comedy for the whole run.

    6. Yumekui Merry
    Yumekui Merry only really sits above KoreZom because of its interesting artwork & the superb direction. In terms of plot however, Yumekui Merry never really seemed to know what it was doing. It started off with the simple aim of getting Merry back to the Dream World and had set up Chaser John Doe & his cat army as the antagonists, but kind of forgot about that midway and instead went with the fight against a powerful Dream Demon called Treesea. While these battles were visually stunning, there really wasn’t much lasting impact or character development – we still know nothing about how Merry is different, or what the point of Yumeji’s ability is, and its a real pity because Yumekui Merry could have been much better than it ended up being.

    5. Fractale
    Ah Fractale….or the biggest disappointment of the season. A few people have said that Fractale was more like an Anime Chikara anime than a noitaminA one, and I fully agree – just goes to show you that not even noitaminA can get it right all the time. Fractale had a tonne of potential – I was nothing short of gushing in my praise of the setting and the huge array of interesting things you could do in it……however Fractale completely squandered its exquisite setting and gave us a very run of the mill story filled with twists for the sake of twists and bog-standard, cookie-cutter characters. I’m probably being overly harsh on the show as a result of being so disappointed, but there’s really nothing worse than seeing a show with so much wasted potential for greatness.

    4. Kimi ni Todoke 2nd Season
    Or the most frustrating series of the season! I know I wasn’t alone in being increasingly irritated by the elaborate stalling measures this season of Kimi ni Todoke employed to keep Sawako & Kazehaya apart! Still this frustration was part of the charm of the show, as it’s a sign that I cared about the characters. If it wasn’ t for that small fact there is no way on earth I’d have put up with watching misunderstanding #2054 play out in front of my eyes, plus the payoff was worth it – so much d’aww~! Will definitely miss Kimi ni Todoke, where will I get my weekly dose of sparkly bubbles & explosions of pastel flowers now!?

    3. Wandering Son (Hourou Musuko)
    My top three stand head and shoulders above the rest of the season and it was difficult to rank them, however I ultimately settled on ranking them in order of how excited I was each week to watch the episode. On that value, Wandering Son comes 3rd mainly because I think it would be better marathoned due to its slow pace. In every other respect Wandering Son was nothing short of stellar. It drops us into the story after skipping some 30 chapters of the manga, but its way of developing the characters means that this is never an issue past the 1st episode. It’s a triumph of pacing and writing that we get to know these kids so well in only 11 episodes – Wandering Son knew how to get the best out of noitaminA’s limited running time (unlike Fractale). Wandering Son won’t be to everyone’s liking due to its watercolour artstyle & very slow pace, but for those that stuck with it, Wandering Son was a treat.

    2. Level E
    Level E was a bit of a mystery when I went into it – I was expecting good writing given the source material comes from the same mangaka as Hunter x Hunter and YuYu Hakushou, but was really taken aback by how good, and how clever Level E turned out to be! More than once I was blindsided by the show, I loved the feeling of thinking I’ve gotten things sussed only to have the carpet pulled out from beneath me – and Level E did that on repeated occasions. The 2nd half was definitely weaker than the stellar start, but the finale contained everything I loved about the show & made up for the weak middle. I don’t think any of us will be forgetting Prince Baka & his victims anytime soon!

    1. Puella Magi Madoka Magica
    Yes it hasn’t ended yet (the final two episodes air 21st April 2011), but for me nothing else really came close to being as intriguing as Madoka Magica. There were high expectations for the series prior to it airing as the publicity machine was in high gear, and as such I was a bit skeptical going in – and for the first two episodes I was doubtful Madoka would manage to live up to its hype……but then came episode three and everything changed. Suddenly Madoka pulled us into a very dark world where nothing could be counted on as safe – speculation was rife and it was fantastic fun to read theories & participate in discussion. Due to the disasters afflicting Japan at the moment, the final two episodes have yet to air – but they’d have to be complete and utter disasters to really shake my opinion of Madoka at this stage.
 
 
 
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    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

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