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The World God Only Knows Ultimate Collection (anime review)

Title: The World God Only Knows Ultimate Collection

Director: Hideyuki Kurata

Studio: Manglobe

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: Jan. 3rd, 2017

Format: Blu-ray / 36 Episodes and 4 OVAs/ 1000 minutes

Genre: Comedy, Fantasy, Harem, School Life, Video Games

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: B

Synopsis:

The World God Only Knows Ultimate Collection contains episodes 1-12 of season 1, 1-12 of season 2, 1-12 of season 3, and 1-4 of the OVA.

Keima Katsuragi’s skill at winning women’s hearts is so legendary that he’s called The God Of Conquests, but that’s only in dating video games, not the real world.

Suddenly, Keima’s life takes a turn for the weird when he answers what he thinks is an online gaming challenge. Instead, he ends up with a demon contract, and now he has to help perky demon hunter Elsie track down a bunch of demons that have escaped from hell!

The reason: the demons have hidden themselves within the hearts of a group of random girls, and the only way to get them out is if Keima can make the girls fall in love with him. Also, just to make sure that Keima is properly incentivized, his failure will result in the loss of something important: his head!

Hopefully, the tricks Keima’s mastered with virtual girls will work just as well with live ones. Otherwise, things are going to get really messy in the spectacular ultimate collection of THE WORLD GOD ONLY KNOWS!

Commentary:

 

In the overarching collection the shinning star are the first two seasons. Watching Keima go from unwilling participant to someone who has a secret love for the chase is fun and entertaining. The parody of the otaku world is not lost and there are some wonderful examples of the reality that has gripped the entire world when it comes to gaming and almost any other fandom.

The story itself is a rather silly, but it creates some wonderful situations  that are played out in a witty and humors fashion. The writing for season 1 and 2 manages to prove the point  that if it is clear what needs to be done then the story can write itself.

For season 3 Dating Game master Keima Katsuragi’s skills at conquering hearts in the virtual world have translated into real life so well that he and Spirit Hunter associate Elsie have already captured 14 of the runaway spirits attaching themselves to the souls of different girls. But is even the God of Conquests up to the task of romancing six REAL Goddesses?

The fate of the world may depend on it, because if Keima can’t do it six more times, a renegade faction of demons will use the Goddesses power to unleash an even more dangerous and powerful group of demons. That could mean the devastation of both Heaven and the Earth! (Not to mention Keima losing his own head.) And if the situation wasn’t difficult enough, it seems that the Goddesses’ souls are hidden inside girls that Keima has already had to make fall in love with him before. As part of the magic spell, they’ve all forgotten about him… or have they?

It is understandable that the overall popularity of the series pushed the studio to make a 3rd season. It is also understandable that there was some attempt to use the earlier plot line to help drive the current story. I can appreciate both, but as it all too often comes to pass, I can say that The World God Only Knows: Goddesses doesn’t even come close to being as entertaining as the first two seasons.

It is great to see all the characters come back and to have the wide array of personalities to play off of it just felt forced and more than just a little contrived. Of course it is natural that anime come across contrived because it is contrived. Once in a while an anime will feel somewhat natural, but most of the time you walk away thinking to yourself that they really pushed it this time. The World God Only Knows: Goddesses doesn’t pull any punches in that category.

One thing I have learned over the years is not to expect much from OVAs. As for The World God Only Knows OVAs I can say that I found them to be both disappointing and pleasing. On the dissapointing side of things I thought 2 of the OVAs were simple through away episodes that didn’t really catch the essence of the series but on the two that dealt with Tenri and Diana proved to be both entertaining and helpful with back story that is key in the Goddess season.

The other two OVAs were a simply there for a quick smile at best. At worst they added nothing to the story and made a few of the characters look a little silly. I’m always amazed when I see OVA’s come out I hope and pray that they wrap things up but more often than not they just give us nothing but a laugh if we are lucky.

Overall Grade: B

When looking at the complete body of the series I find that the balance of interest must fall on season 1 & 2. Season 3 is a weak reminder of the essence of the story and the OVAs are just a money grab.

After being such a fan of The World God Only Knows and having the OVAs tossed out there a reminded that anime is more of a business than an art form and the reality is that they are trying to make a profit. I can’t be to saddened by this release because there is some material in the group that is relevant to the series. I also see the other OVAs as simple comic relief and nothing more.

If you are a serious fan of The World God Only Knows then this set is something that you will want to own. If you aren’t then I would say look else were for your entertainment.

Extras:

Japanese Promos, Music Videos, Clean Opening Animation.

Wakaba Girl: Complete Collection (anime review)

review provided by Katie and Andrew

Title: Wakaba Girl: Complete Collection

Director: Masaharu Watanabe

Studio: Nexus

Author: Yui Hara

U.S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks / Section 23

U.S. Release Date: December 20, 2016

Format and Length: Blu-ray / 14 Episodes / 112 Minutes

Genre: Comedy, School Life, Slice of Life

Industry Age Rating: 14 and up

Overall Personal Rating: B+

Similar Series or Titles to Check Out: Kiniro Mosaic, Lucky Star, and Is the Order a Rabbit?

 

Synopsis:

Even though her ridiculously wealthy family tries to give her everything, it is not until the sheltered Wakaba Kohashi fails to get into an upscale school that she finds what she really needed: a group of friends who want to know the real her, and not her status.

Her new school mates may not be up to date on haute couture, but Wakaba is enthralled by their knowledge about the outside world, including the flashy “gyaru” fashion. Soon, Wakaba is helping, or trying to help, her newfound friends with their newfound high school girl problems.

From helping innocent Moeko though gymnastics, standing in for Nao in a beauty contest, and inadvertently helping Mao act like a rich girl, to simply enjoying the joys of girl talk and sharing ice cream, there’s a whole new world of everyday wonders waiting to be discovered in Wakaba Girl: Complete Collection!

 

Commentary:

One of the latest entries into the cute girls doing cute things genre, Wakaba Girl: Complete Collection is about a dim-witted, spoiled, socially inept, rich girl, who seems to have a lot of difficulties making friends. Having little knowledge in speaking to normal people, her aristocratic up-bringing, constant moving, and sheltered life have contributed nothing but difficulty in grasping the realities of normal everyday life. Being in class she manages to get surrounded by a group of three other girls that give her a chance, and teach her what she needs to know, by doing normal every day things that most people do with friends after school. The individual episodes are very cute, and short, lasting a total of seven minutes each. The show does a good job in the short spans of its episodes. One thing when you make a series so short is the difficulty involved in developing characters and story. Keeping it somewhat episodic does help with the story. As for developing characters, they actually did a real good job in the short time they had. Each of the three girls got an episode where they took the spotlight, revolving around Wakaba of course, but it was enough to make the characters feel real and to show individual personalities. They all did fall into classically defined archetypes, but it worked well. The activities were real simple, things you did with your friends after school, but helped to move everything along. They also developed a decent amount of comedy in between it all.

 

Extras:

Wakaba Girl: Complete Collection includes clean opening and closing animations and Sentai Filmworks trailers as special features. This series was released with Japanese with English subtitles as the only language option.

 

Overall Grade: B+

Definitely a good addition to the collection of anyone that loves the “cute girls doing cute things” genre.

Kimba the White Lion Anime Review

Title: Kimba the White Lion (Anime Elements edition)

U. S. (Re) release date: November 1, 2016

Format: Blu-ray or DVD/ 52 Episodes/ 1145 Minutes

English Dub

Genre: Youth, Action, Comedy

Age Rating: All Ages

Overall Personal Rating: B

Synopsis:

A young lion cub escapes from hunters, to find himself alone and orphaned. He spends time with some humans who help him. He learns to appreciate their culture and speak the language. He sets out to make his way in the jungle. A natural leader, he begins to gather friends and rallies the other animals to help protect themselves from  the dangers in the jungle, especially the hunters. Kimba believes that peace will only be maintained if the animals and people learn to communicate and respect each other but he won’t back down from a fight. Along the way, Kimba searches for his past and learns to gain strength from his ancestors.

Commentary:

Kimba the White Lion is a classic of anime originally aired in the 1960’s, a comedy/drama series meant for children. I don’t intend that it should be put into the same grouping as an American cartoons. It isn’t what we are used to. The characters don’t seem so far off, but it is the story telling and some of the situational elements that make it different. It’s been noted that a similarity exists between Kimba the White Lion and the American The Lion King, and I can see those points, but this story has the time to go in depth (it is 52 episodes) as to the meaning of community, our place int the world and even an early form of conservation.

Who do I recommend Kimba the White Lion for? As a classic, any anime fan should catch a few episode to see part of the development of the art form and story telling. It was created by one of the early stars of anime/manga, Osamu Tezuka, who also created Astro Boy among others. really, I think it has little to hold an adult’s attention, it is definitely a kid’s show. (Wonderfully, this is an English dub, the kid’s anime I’ve seen so far hasn’t been, which doesn’t make sense for the American market.) Another reason to watch, is the Kimba versus Simba. It’s fun to see how you will think about the similarities. I don’t know if one influenced the other, but as you watch, remember Kimba predates by decades.

Visually it has some of the characteristics we know and appreciate from the contemporary anime of today. It has the bright colors and big eyes with the enthusiastic lead character.  There is quite a bit that does make it dated, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they are bad things. It is a representation of the times. The art style isn’t what we are used to now, but familiar at the time, even in America. The sound effects also come across as dated, as to what I mean, think “pow” and “boing” of the original Batman TV series.

Overall Personal Rating: B   As a viewer of modern anime, I wonder if Kimba can find much of an audience, but I hope everyone at least gives it a try for the sake of  it’s 50 year history.

 

 

New Arrivals 12.13.16

Accessories

Button: Hetalia – America Chibi

Button: Hetalia – England Portrait

Button: Hetalia – Germany

Button: Hetalia – Russia

Necklace: Haikyu!! – Hinata

Necklace: Haikyu!! – SD Koshi & Karasuno

Necklace: Haikyu!! – SD Tobio & Karasuno

Necklace: Haikyu!! – SD Yu & Karasuno

Necklace: Haikyu!! – Sugawara Dog Tag

Necklace: Haikyu!! – Tsukishima

Necklace: Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure – Jotaro’s Hat Icon

Necklace: Persona 4 – Card

Necklace: PSYCHO-PASS – Public Safety Bureau

Necklace: Puella Magi Madoka Magica – Soul Gem Ring

Necklace: Sailor Moon S – Star Power Stick Jupiter

Necklace: Sailor Moon S – Star Power Stick Mercury

Necklace: Sailor Moon S – Star Power Stick Venus

Phone Charm: Fairy Tail – Erza

Phone Charm: FLCL (Fooly Cooly) – Canti Head

Phone Charm: Hetalia – England

Phone Charm: Hetalia – SD America

Phone Charm: Hetalia – SD England

Phone Charm: Hetalia – SD Russia

Phone Charm: Sgt. Frog – Keroro

Phone Charm: Sgt. Frog – Keroro Metal Strap

T-Shirt: Fairy Tail – Group Squares Blue (XXL)

T-Shirt: Fairy Tail – Happy Fly High (Junior XXL)

T-Shirt: Fairy Tail – Team Fairy Tail (M)

T-Shirt: Hetalia – Allied Powers Earth (Junior M)

T-Shirt: Hetalia – Crew New Version (L)

T-Shirt: Hetalia – England Red (S)

T-Shirt: Hetalia World Series – Crew Color (S)

T-Shirt: Sword Art Online – Kirito Corridor (M)

T-Shirt: Sword Art Online 2 – Kirito Gun Fight (Junior L)

Bag: Saint Seiya – Bronze Saints Messenger

Attack on Titan Vol. 3 (Manga)

Berserk Vol. 15 (Manga)

Berserk Vol. 16 (Manga)

Berserk

Dogs Vol. 6 (Manga)

Dogs Vol. 7 (Manga)

Dogs Vol. 8 (Manga)

Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service Omnibus Vol. 2 (Manga)

Monster Hunter: Flash Hunter Vol. 5 (Manga)

Monster Perfect Edition Vol. 2 (Manga)

Tokyo Ghoul Vol. 1 (Manga)

Tokyo Ghoul Vol. 2 (Manga)

Tokyo Ghoul Vol. 3 (Manga)

Tokyo Ghoul Vol. 4 (Manga)

Tokyo Ghoul Vol. 5 (Manga)

Ultimo Vol. 12 (Manga)

Blanket: Fairy Tail – Natsu & Happy Throw

Blanket: Sword Art Online – Immortal Object Throw

Blanket: Sword Art Online 2 – Sinon Sublimation

Mug: Fairy Tail – Natsu & Happy

Mug: Hetalia: Axis Powers – Pet Buddies Tumbler

Playing Cards: Sword Art Online

Key Chain: Hetalia – Axis Italy, Japan, Germany

Key Chain: Hetalia – Metal Allied Powers

Key Chain: Inu Yasha – Kikyo

Inu Yasha: Kirara 9” Plush

Pencil Case: Fairy Tail – Guild Logo Tin

Fabric Poster: Berserk – Guts & Brand of Sacrifice

Fabric Poster: Black Butler – Sebastian & Ciel Knife Attack

Fabric Poster: Black Butler – Sebastian, Grell, Ash & Ciel

Fabric Poster: Fairy Tail – Erza Pose

Fabric Poster: Fairy Tail – Natsu Pose

Fabric Poster: Hetalia – Sky Background

GE775Fabric Poster: Hetalia World Series – Group Dog Pile

Models

#1 WING GUNDAM 1/100

#3 GUNDAM DEATHSCYTHE 1/100

#7 GUNDAM DEATHSCYTHE H 1/100

EW-02 Wing Gundam Zero Custom, Bandai HG-EW 1/100

EW-06 Gundam Sandrock Custom, Bandai HG-EW 1/100

Wing Gundam Proto Zero Ver EW, Bandai Master Grade

#15 Gundam Exia, Bandai Real Grade

#37 Denial Gundam “Gundam BFT”, Bandai HGBF

RX-77-2 GUNCANNON, Bandai Master Grade

Sazabi Ver. Ka, Bandai Master Grade

Transient Gundam Glacier “Gundam Build Fighters Honoo Try”, Bandai HGBF 1/144

MSN-06S Sinanju “Gundam UC”, Bandai RG 1/144

Gundam Barbatos Lupus “Gundam IBO”, Bandai HG

Gundam Barbatos Lupus “Gundam IBO”, Bandai IBO Full Mechanics 1/100

Angelic Layer on Blu-ray (Anime Review)

Title: Angelic Layer on Blu-ray

Director: Hiroshi Nishikiori

Studio: Bones

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: Dec. 13, 2016

Format: Blu-ray / 650 Minutes / 26 Episodes

Genre: Sci Fi, Comedy, Action, Adventure

Age Rating: TV 13

Overall Personal Grade: B

 

Synopsis:

From the moment twelve-year-old Misaki Suzuhara first arrives in Tokyo to live with her aunt, she finds herself swept away by the amazing world of Angelic Layer – a fast-paced high-tech game where dolls called “Angels” are controlled by the thoughts of their operator, or “Deus.”

Discovering that her new friends are as interested in Angelic Layer as she is, Misaki builds her own Angel, Hikaru, and begins competing in battles where will and determination count far more than size and strength.

The competitions are going to be fierce and, with the national championships looming on the horizon, you can bet that not everyone Misaki meets will be on her side. Can Misaki handle the pressure of non-stop competition while struggling to adapt to life in an unfamiliar city?

From the amazing minds and pens of Japan’s legendary all-female creative team, CLAMP, it’s the coming of age adventure that’s become an all-time anime classic – ANGELIC LAYER!

Commentary:

The Japanese have long had a fascination with creating a doll and then using them to battle, there are many of the highly overrated trading card games. Angelic Layer grew out of the hype of the times and by the early 2000 there was a gap missing for the younger female audience. That is where Angelic Layer fits in. The story is strong enough to have 2 seasons and smart enough not to push it too far.

I like the way we are introduced to all of the characters. I found it interesting and obvious enough not to loose me from the very beginning. With the added humor tossed in it becomes a very likable series. I may not be the target audience, but it still managed to take hold and make me want to keep coming back for more.

Overall Grade: B

Even though the series is a little dated and the animation was clearly made for TV it is obvious that there was some care taken to provide a quality series. I believe that almost any 10 year old girl will fall involve with this story and want to become another Misaki. The thought of being small but still powerful is a great draw for anyone who see’s themselves as somewhat of a n underdog.

I wish the writing would have been a little smarter, but with the age of the series it is strong enough to provide a clear path to follow. The animation is nothing to write home about and I am not too sure that Angelic Layer needed a Blu-ray edition. I do believe that it could use a re-release and this is clearly the right option at the right time.

Clamp is one of the most beloved writing team in the manga world and Angelic Layer is a solid story from them. If you need to find a series perfect for a younger audience the Angelic Layer is the one you want.

Gatchaman Crowds insight (anime review)

814131016393_anime-gatchaman-crowds-insight-primaryTitle: Gatchaman Crowds Insight on blu-ray

Director: Kenji Nakamura

Studio: Tatsunoko Production

Writer: Toshiya Ono

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: Nov. 22nd, 2016

Format: Blu-ray / 13 Episodes / 325 Minutes

Genre: Sci Fi, Action, Adventure, Super Hero

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: B-

Synopsis:

Gatchaman Crowds insight contains episodes 1-13 of season two of Gatchaman Crowds.

You can’t keep a good Gatchaman down, especially when a new organization called VAPE (short for Violent Ape) starts hijacking CROWDS technology.

The ensuing wave of “Red CROWDS” incidents targeting high profile targets like the Prime Minister make it clear that the good team needs to start recruiting; fast. Fortunately, help arrives quickly, and with a rather… loud entrance. The alien Gelsadra’s ship crashes in a rice paddy in Nijima!

Besides being generally peaceful, Gelsadra has a unique power involving comic-book-like speech bubbles that display a person’s inner feelings, rather like an emoji.

There’s also the fireworks enthusiast, Tsubasa, whose life becomes the focus of millions of viewers when she’s chosen as the newest Gatchaman – on nationwide live television!

As if that wasn’t enough pressure for a teenage girl to handle, she’s also assigned Hajime as her mentor!

Will she survive? Will the world survive? Things are about to get really wild and crazy in GATCHAMAN CROWDS INSIGHT!

Commentary:

Are you looking for a series that is colorful, cheerful and rather bizarre then you need to look no further than Gatcham Crowds insight. From the very opening sequence it is easy to tell that this one will keep your attention.

The story is rather simple with plenty of oddities thrown in. It at times leaves you wondering why you are watching it and at other time thinking that this is simply great. I’m not real sure that the switch between great and weak does the series any help in fact this change is a true reflection of the writing and if the writing is not consistent then the series suffers.

Overall Grade: B

Even though the series has some obvious flaw in the writing I still found it to be a enjoyable series that provides enough odd insight to be more than just average. Gatchaman Crowds insight takes the new animation style of bright and bold to a new level and makes sure you eyes are glued to the screen. This outrageous animation added to a strange story of hers and aliens that goes from sugar sweet to somewhat weird makes for entertainment.

I’m not sure Gatchaman Crowds insight is for everyone, but if you are looking for something different then this one is for you. You do not need to see the first season of Gatcham Crowds because for once there is a brief explanation of the prior season to open this part of the series. Also, if you just want wierd here you go.

Knights of Sidonia: Battle for Planet Nine (anime review)

knights-of-sidonia-season-2Title: Knights of Sidonia: Battle for Planet Nine

Director: Kobun Shizuno

Creator: Tsutomu Nihei

Studio: Polygon Pictures

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: November 29th, 2016

Format: Blu-ray / 12 Episodes & Feature Film/ 442 Minutes

Genre: Sci Fi, Mecha, Drama, Action, Seinen

Age Rating: TV MA

Overall Personal Rating: A-

Synopsis:

Knights of Sidonia Battle for Planet Nine (Daikyuu Wakusei Seneki) contains episodes 1-12 of the second season of Knights of Sidonia plus a movie, a chipboard box, art cards, and a poster.

Discovering the nature of one’s individual identity is a question every sentient being confronts. Do you only count if you’re entirely human? What does it mean to be a person?

In a war with the alien Gauna, capable of absorbing and re-purposing human DNA, these are no longer abstract questions In these uncertain conditions, pilot Nagate Tanikaze finds himself developing an obsession with the Gauna clone of his deceased beloved, Hoshijiro.

Meanwhile, his close friend, Izana, a manufactured non-binary human, goes through an alarming change as their feelings for Nagate grow. Existential and romantic problems will have to wait though, as the Guana step up their attacks and a virtual coup d’état threatens to throw Sidonia’s leadership into chaos, while even darker forces stir within.

The very definition of what it means to be human is about to be questioned as the battle to survive continues in KNIGHTS OF SIDONIA SEASON 2: BATTLE FOR PLANET NINE!

Commentary:

Being a major fan of Knights of Sidonia I was thrilled to see the second season finally release. I have heard plenty of disappointment regarding the heavy Computer Graphics use, but I’m not too sure it doesn’t end up adding to the overall feel of the animation. Add Nihei’s gritty imagery to the hard edge of CG and you end up with a true dystopian future that has a look of tired worn-out existence.

The plot continues with mush intrigue and mystery as to what is going on. We are introduced to plenty of new strange aspects to the story and of course there is  Tanikaze who manages to provide plenty of wonder as to what he really is.

Overall Grade: A-

If my only grade for Knights of Sidonia was based on the story it would be an A, but because there is simple failure to wrap the series up I ended up feeling left with a great start and no finish.

The animation may put some people off and in some ways it does get a little tiresome. I still think the hard CG helps create that aged future where humanity is at it’s final battle. Now if we can just see that battle and discover what the outcome will be.

I know that Netflix has had plenty of opportunity to show this series and that a lot of people may not like the English dub, I feel as though it should be a top pick of those mecha lovers who are looking for something more original than Gundam or EVA. Of course, there are plenty of Mecha series out there and it should be noted that Knights of Sidonia is not finished. You should give it a try and if you haven’t seen season one you should watch the movie before you watch Battle for Planet Nine.

Little Busters! EX: Complete OVA Collection (anime review)

little-busters-exreview provided by Andrew and Katie

Title: Little Busters! EX: Complete OVA Collection

Director: Yoshiki Yamakawa

Studio: J.C. Staff

U.S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U.S. Release Date: December 6, 2016

Format and Length: Blu-ray / 8 Episodes / 200 Minutes

Genre: School Life, Slice of Life, Supernatural, Comedy, Drama, Romance

Industry Age Rating: 14 and up

Overall Personal Rating: B-

Similar Series or Titles to Check Out: Little Busters, Little Busters: Refrain

Synopsis:

Does the new girl in Riki Naoe’s life need his help, or is she actually trying to kill him? After a chance encounter on a rooftop brings the enigmatic Saya Tokido into the Little Busters’ world, the only thing that’s certain is that trouble is sure to follow.

As if saving the lives of his teammates wasn’t enough of a task to handle, now Riki must also untangle a web of new mysteries that seem to be rooted in his own personal past! Who are the Dark Executives, why do they want to keep Saya and Riki apart, and what is the nature of the secret treasure that Saya seeks? Sometimes, answers lead to even more questions as Riki and the Little Busters discover that they weren’t the only people drawn into Kyousuke’s artificial world in Little Busters! EX!

Commentary:

Little Busters! EX: Complete OVA Collection in the three-arc OVA series that follows Little Busters!: Refrain. However, it seems that Little Busters! EX: Complete OVA Collection takes place in an alternate world or universe and the characters know about it. Two of the arcs, the Kanata and the Sasami arc make the most sense and fit in with the rest of the series. Saya’s arc made the least sense of all because she only exists in the alternate world and the four episode arc is the only time she is in the entire series. Her arc was also the weakest in that it ends with no resolution while the other two arcs have some kind of resolution even though they are shorter in length.

There was a decent amount of character development in Little Busters! EX: Complete OVA Collection. Saya was an interesting character to say the least.  Apparently she and Riki met each other when they were children and that causes her to fall in love with him. She is also your run-of-the-mill tsundere that appears in every harem amine series. Sasami and Kanata are a bit more realistic but I can name other series where I have seen the cold/mysterious personalities. They are both every stand-offish and keep to themselves. However, both girls did grow as characters over their separate two episode arcs and eventually learned to trust and fall in love.

The animation was very pretty and the backgrounds did not take away from the characters. The voice actors did a good job of bringing the characters to life. The opening and closing songs were catchy and were fun to listen to. All in all, Little Busters! EX: Complete OVA Collection was an interesting addition to the entire series.

Extras:

Little Busters! EX: Complete OVA Collection includes clean opening and closing animations and Sentai Filmworks trailers as special features. This series was released with both English and Japanese with English subtitles as language options.

Overall Grade: B-

Little Busters! EX: Complete OVA Collection is an interesting addition to the Little Busters! series. I recommend this release to anyone who has seen the rest of the series.

non non biyori repeat (season 2) anime review

non-non-biyoriTitle: non non biyori repeat (season 2)

 

U. S. Release date: 11/8/16

Format: Blu-ray or DVD/ 12 Episodes /300 Minutes

Genre: Childhood slice of life

Age Rating: 13+

Overall Personal Rating: A-

Synopsis:

Non non biyori repeat is a wonderful portrayal of life in the Japanese countryside. It centers around the female students of the small school. It is so small, there are only 5 students in the combined grade and middle school. Those in the area who are of high school age, go into Tokyo for their classes. We get to experience the events of their lives like the first day of school as well as the everyday things like deciding what to do or play on their day off.

As life goes on, the year is marked by the traditions and rhythms of the seasons of life in a small town in Japan. There is the childhood explorations of nature, the growing independence permitted in the culture and the building of friendships.

Commentary:

This anime was really nice to watch. The characters are easy to sympathasize with and really care about. Their interactions and friendships are a big part of the special quality of this anime. Visually it was gorgeous, the wonderful detail to the environment made the countryside’s nature like a character in itself. It makes a perfect setting for the kids to explore in sync with the world around them. It is a beautiful nurturing world, the idilic place many of us would have wanted to grow up or raise our own kids in. The sound quality should be noted too. Even though most of the characters were girls, they didn’t default to the annoying squeaky voice which is a big plus in my opinion. The music support was well done and often as lovely as the scenery.

Nothing super big happens, it is all sort of life taken in strides. A wonder in everyday things and a real appreciation of the events that mark the year’s passing; the first day of classes, opening the pool, digging for bamboo shoots, pounding mochi on New Year.

Even though it is a sweet anime, it wasn’t boring nor was I really hoping something exciting would happen. It may only be a girl learning to ride her bike, but it finds a way to go deeper than that. It is also what is going on around her. It is the reasons she is doing it. The emotions and reactions that are part of it.

This anime definitely has a comedy aspect, but it is subtle and much of it is the natural way that things kids do and say are funny. Non non biyori repeat is the second season but as this is a  slice of life selection and each episode is complete, you don’t need to have seen the first season at all. I haven’t seen the first one, but have enjoyed this enough to go looking for it.

Overall Grade: A- very sweet and beautiful portrayal of an idilic Japanese childhood. The only reason this get an A minus is that an anime that a younger audience could really enjoy as much as an adult really should be dubbed when released for the American market. I think this is limiting the market and leaving out some  enthusiastic younger fans.

In the radius:

Non non biyori repeat is cute and light hearted, full of peace and joy. Although there is not one story line that carries through the season and a goal to head towards, I think you will like this anime if you liked Love Live! and Is this order a rabbit?

New Models and Other Stuff Just In

suit-gundam-rx-78-2-perfect-grade3-500x500Here is a list of things we just got in:

MS Blade 01, Bandai Model Support Goods

MS Radome 01, Bandai Model Support Goods

RX-78-2 Gundam, Bandai Perfect Grade

FA-010S Full Armor ZZ GUNDAM, Bandai Master Grade

BALL GUNDAM MS 8th TEAM, Bandai Master

NEMO, Bandai Master Grade

SHIN MUSHA, Bandai Master Grade

Zaku Cannon “Mobile Suit Gundam”, Bandai Master Grade

Gundam Exia Trans-Am Mode “Gundam 00”, Bandai Master Grade

Gundam Seven Sword/G, Bandai Master Grade

RX-0 Full Armor Unicorn Gundam Ver.Ka, Bandai Master Grade

RX-0 Gundam Unit 02 Banshee, Bandai Master Grade

MS-06S Char”s Zaku II, Bandai Real Grade

Skygrasper with Launcher/Sword Pack, Bandai Real

RX-178 Gundam MK-II (Titans), Bandai Real Grade

Justice Gundam, Bandai Real Grade

Zeta Gundam, Bandai Real Grade

Destiny Gundam, Bandai Real Grade

Strike Freedom Gundam, Bandai Real Grade

Zaku II Gaia/Mash Custom “Gundam The Origin”, Bandai HG The Origin

RX-78 GUNDAMGP03 DENDROBIUM, Bandai HGUC

Advanced Hazel, Bandai HGUC

ORX-005 GAPLANT TR-5 Hrairoo, Bandai HGUC

RB-79 Ball Twin Set 1/144, Bandai HGUC

Shining Gundam, Bandai HGUC

Zaku 1 Sniper (Yonem Kirks Custom), Bandai

Force Impulse Gundam, “Gundam Seed Destiny”, Bandai HGCE

Zaku I, “Gundam Thunderbolt” (Anime Color Ver), Bandai Gundam Thunderbolt HG

K9 Dog Pack, Bandai Build Custom 1/144 HG

Super Custom Zaku F2000 1/144, Bandai Gunpla Builders

GUNDAM EPYON 1/100, Bandai Gundam Wing

Blocken, Bandai Patlabor 1/60

Helldiver, Bandai Patlabor 1/60

Rei-Shiki, Bandai Patlabor 1/60

Gryphon, Bandai Patlabor 1/60

Alfonce Special, Bandai Patlabor 1/60

Namikaze Minato “Naruto Shippuden”, S.H. Figuarts

Ranma Saotome “Ranma 1/2”, S.H.Figuarts

FW Gundam Converge #1 , Bandai FW

Gundam Converge #3, Bandai Shokugan

Monster Hunter Keychain Vol.1,

Bandai Shokugan Nyanboard Figure Collection 2 Sen-Ti-Nel Nyanboard

GM01 Black Fine Line, GSI

Gundam Barbatos Lupus “Gundam IBO”, Bandai HG 1/144

Super Saiyan 2 Son Gohan “Dragon Ball Z”, Bandai Figure-rise Standard

Perfect Cell “Dragon Ball Z”, Bandai Figure-rise Standard

Accessories
Phone Charm: Sword Art Online II: Real Rubber Pikuriru! Tamako Market Trading Straps (Set of 3)

 

Apparel
T-Shirt: Gundam – Wing Zero Custom (XXL)
T-Shirt: Gundam Wing – Wing Zero Endless Waltz (XL)

 

Bags
Tote Bag: Another – Mei

 

Books
20th Century Boys Vol. 1 (Manga)
20th Century Boys Vol. 2 (Manga)
20th Century Boys Vol. 3 (Manga)
20th Century Boys Vol. 4 (Manga)
Ajin Vol. 8: Demi-Human (Manga)
Attack on Titan Vol. 8 (Manga)
Attack on Titan Vol. 9 (Manga)
Berserk Vol. 2 (Manga)
Berserk Vol. 5 (Manga)
Berserk Vol. 6 (Manga)
Berserk Vol. 12 (Manga)
Berserk Vol. 14 (Manga)
Bleach Vol. 68 (Manga)
Castle in the Sky Vol. 2 (Manga)
Castle in the Sky Vol. 3 (Manga)
Cells at Work! Vol. 1 (Manga)
Deadman Wonderland Vol. 2 (Manga)
Deadman Wonderland Vol. 9 (Manga)
Deadman Wonderland Vol. 13 (Manga)
Death Note Black Edition Vol. 2 (Manga)
Death Note Black Edition Vol. 3 (Manga)
Death Note Black Edition Vol. 4 (Manga)
Death Note Black Edition Vol. 5 (Manga)
Death Note Black Edition Vol. 6 (Manga)
Fruits Basket Vol. 1 Collector’s Edition (Manga)
Fruits Basket Vol. 6 Collector’s Edition (Manga)
Ghost and the Lady Vol. 1 (Manga)
Haikyu!! Vol. 2 (Manga)
Howl’s Moving Castle Vol. 1 (Manga)
Howl’s Moving Castle Vol. 2 (Manga)
Howl’s Moving Castle Vol. 3 (Manga)
Howl’s Moving Castle Vol. 4 (Manga)
Interviews with Monster Girls Vol. 1: Demi-Girls (Manga)
JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 3 Stardust Crusaders Vol. 1 (Manga)
Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service Omnibus Vol. 1 (Manga)
Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service Omnibus Vol. 2 (Manga)
Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service Omnibus Vol. 3 (Manga)
Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service Omnibus Vol. 4 (Manga)
Master Keaton Vol. 7 (Manga)
Master Keaton Vol. 8 (Manga)
Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid Vol. 1 (Manga)
Monster Hunter Orage Vol. 1 (Manga)
Monster Hunter Orage Vol. 2 (Manga)
Monster Hunter Orage Vol. 3 (Manga)
Monster Hunter Orage Vol. 4 (Manga)
Monster Perfect Edition Vol. 1 (Manga)
Monster Perfect Edition Vol. 9 (Manga)
My Girlfriend is a T-Rex Vol. 1 (Manga)
My Hero Academia Vol. 6 (Manga)
Nichijou Vol. 5 (Manga)
One-Punch Man Vol. 1 (Manga)
Steins;Gate Vol. 1 (Manga)
Tohyo Game Vol. 1 (Manga)
Tokyo Ghoul : Days (Manga)
Tokyo Ghoul Vol. 9 (Manga)
Your Lie in April Vol. 5 (Manga)
Your Lie in April Vol. 6 (Manga)
Your Lie in April Vol. 9 (Manga)
Your Lie in April Vol. 10 (Manga)

 

Character Goods
Air Freshener: Fullmetal Alchemist Brother: Ed & Al
Magnet: FullMetal Alchemist Brotherhood – Crew

 

Figures
Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiyan Vegeta POP! Vinyl Figure (AAA Anime Exclusive)
Ex:Ride: Spride.06 TT-Zero 13 Racing Miku Motorcyle for Figma Action Figures
Sword Art Online: Kirito POP Vinyl Figure
Vocaloid: GearTribe Hatsune Miku GT Project 2014 ver. Transforming Action Figure

 

Key Chains
Key Chain: Hetalia – Axis Italy, Japan, Germany
Key Chain: Hetalia – England

 

Plush
Crayon Shin Chan: 7” Plush – Whitey
Crayon Shin Chan: 8” Plush – Georgie
Hetalia: England Plush
Hetalia: Russia Plush