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Chaika: The Coffin Princess

814131014986_anime-chaika-coffin-princess-blu-rayTitle: Chaika The Coffin Princess season 1

Director: Soichi Masui

Creator: Ichiro Sakaki

Anime Writer: Touko Machida

Studio: Bones

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

Format: Blu-ray/ 12 Episodes / 300 Minutes

Genre: Fantasy, Action, Supernatural

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: B+


The end of the war with the Gaz Empire only meant unemployment for former Saboteur Toru Acura. So when he collides with fate in the form of a young girl carrying a coffin through a forest, it doesn’t take much convincing for Toru and his similarly inclined step-sister Akari to join young wizard Chaika on her bizarre quest: to collect the scattered body parts of the former Emperor.

Unfortunately, the severed pieces were carried off by the Heroes who killed him, and some think that reassembling them could restart the war! On top of that, Chaika may not be who she claims to be, as there are others conducting similar missions all across the kingdoms. Is Chaika a dead man’s daughter, picking up the pieces for burial, or is there something far more sinister in the works? The winds of war are stirring and there are dragons waiting in the darkness ahead for Chaika The Coffin Princess!


Chaika The Coffin Princess is not what I expected. I was thoughtful and full of dark mystery. The series first came across as just another dark fantasy, but as it progressed I found the plot to be much thicker and well developed. You never really know who or what Chaika is but it does become easy to by into the little group because of the blind faith that Toru who is looking for a reason to live.

The other thing that makes it easy to like this series is the animation. Bones does a lot of different animation it doesn’t always work, but for Chaika the look and feel is spot on. The story fits the fanciful world they live in and helps keep things moving along. That being said I am getting a little tired of seeing the magical rings show up in every show to evidence some summons or spell being cast. It is over used I think it would have worked just fine without it.

Overall Grade: B+

Chaika the Coffin Princess is a strong fantasy that give you enough story and plot to make it worth while to get involved in.  As it worked toward the end of the first 12 episodes I was hoping for more information and maybe even a secret or two to be revealed, but I was left wanting more. Sometimes it is a terrible way to setup a series but when the story and plot are strong enough it is a wonderful way to move the series along. Chaika the Coffin Princess  voice acting was rather tight and caught the feeling exceptionally well. The only draw back was Crystal LaPort who played Fredrika. She came across whinny and took to the high pitch end all too much that it became annoying, much the way Monica Rail plays many of her characters. It is just too much.

Chaika the Coffin Princess is a great option for the fantasy lover. It should be easy to get past the tired Lolita crap laid out with Chaika and get into the story. For those of you looking for something different then this might be just what you are looking for. I found much of the drama and action that is found in Sword Art Online and some of the solid plot of Fullmetal Alchemist.

Check it out and enjoy.

Mobile Suit Gundam Collection 1 on Blu-ray (anime review)

Mobile Suit Gundam Collection 1Title: Mobile Suit Gundam Collection 1 on Blu-ray

Director: Yoshiyuki Tomino

Studio: Nippon Sunrise

U. S. Distributor: Sunrise

U. S. Re-Release Date: Nov. 3rd, 2015

Format: Blu-ray / 21 Episodes / 525 Minutes

Genre: Sci Fi, Mecha, Action, Adventure

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: C+


Universal Century 0079. The rebel space colonies of the Principality of Zeon launch a war of independence against the Earth Federation, using humanoid fighting vehicles called mobile suits to overwhelm the Federation Forces and conquer half of Earth’s surface. Months later, the Federation has finally developed its own prototype mobile suits at a remote space colony. But when the colony suffers a Zeon surprise attack, these new weapons fall into the hands of a motley crew of civilians and cadets, and fate places a youth named Amuro Ray at the controls of the white mobile suit Gundam.


I am not sure how many times I have said this statement this year alone, but sometimes things are better off left in the imagination of the ones who love it. Mobile Suite Gundam Collection 1 is one of those things. The series, to put it quite simply, did not age very well. The one saving grace is that the Japanese language track is provided. I recall how I felt about Mobile Suite Gundam in my youth when it was something different in our anther simplistic world and now I can say that Mobile Suit Gundam has taken on the simplistic moniker. I find everything about it rather difficult to watch. I understand that it is being released to satisfy the hard core fans of the franchise because many of them see this particular series in the franchise as one of the best. I wish I could join that camp, but the story just doesn’t do it for me.

Overall Grade: C+

On a nostalgic level I found it fun to watch and Mobile Suite Gundam provided many laughs, most not intended. The animation reminded me of bad 70’s look that I didn’t even like back then and the choppy writing that tells the story but in a way that is sometimes hard to follow and other times too simplistic. Deep down inside I would have loved to see this re-made with a new writing staff and contemporary animation techniques. I know that won’t happen because it is too easy to just re-release it in its full original glory.

Of course I didn’t think it was all bad. I still believe that Mobile Suite Gundam and a few other series set the stage for the onslaught of great Mecha series that followed and there is also a marketing machine behind the Gundam franchise that needs to be recognized for its unequaled ability to own the ability to keep the fandom alive and growing. I can’t say that about other long live series. So, if you are looking for a trip down memory lane or just need to see where the craze all began then this is worth picking up or at least finding someone who dished out the cold cash and hang out at their place for a few days.

Animeggroll At St. Louis Comic Con April 2-4

st-louis-comic-con-2014-wizard-world-convention-april-4-5-6-2014-fri-sat-sun-1That’s right, Animeggroll will be a dealer at this years St. Louis Comic Con (Wizard World). So, if you make it downtown to Americas Center be sure to come on by and visit our booth.

Here is a link to the convention. Check out all the guests.

Last Exile: Fam, the Silver Wing parts 1 & 2 (anime review)

Last Exile: Fam, the Silver WingLast Exile: Fam, the Silver Wing parts 1 & 2

U. S. Release Date: Sept. 10th, 2013

Director: Koichi Chigira

Studio: Gonzo

U. S. Distributor: FUNimation

Format: Blu-ray / DVD / 575 minutes / 21 episodes

Age Rating: TV 14

Personal Grade: A-



Years ago, humanity abandoned the ruined Earth. Generations later, with the planet again capable of sustaining life, mankind returned. In the skies above the reborn world, rebellious young Fam and her best friend Giselle make their living as Sky Pirates. Atop sleek Vespa Vanships, the girls dart fearlessly through the clouds, capturing and selling airborne battleships for profit. It’s a life of care-free swashbuckling – until the Ades Federation attacks.

The only nation to remain on Earth during humanity’s exile, The Ades Federation wages war against those who returned only after the planet’s darkest days had passed. When Fam and Giselle rescue a princess from the clutches of the rampaging Ades armada, they join the young royal’s battle to save her Kingdom from destruction – and undertake the impossible mission of uniting humanity in peace.


I have been waiting for almost two years for this series to have its full release because Last Exile is one of my favorite series of all time. Not only is the original beautiful it is also well written, well acted and well developed. Of course my expectation for Fam, the Silver Wing are very high indeed. By the end of the first episode I gave a great sigh of relief, I was not going to be disappointed or at least I thought so. The opening salvo was strong and wonderfully conceived. We are treated to a reunion with a character whom I thought was dead and very happy to see him back in his usual form. We are also given a glimpse of the ship that everyone left on for the return to Earth. It wasn’t long before even more of the original cast started showing up and this helped the plot become even more interesting and somewhat baffling. None the less, I was still very happy with what I saw.

As the series develops it slightly looses its way and I gets a little convoluted, but it doesn’t take too much time for it to right itself and get back on track. As it concludes the story it does become a little heavy handed and somewhat overly sympathetic toward the main characters I still thought it managed to close itself out rather nicely. I still wanted to understand what happened to some of the more beloved characters from the first series. I guess that I will just need to read the manga to get the full story.

One aspect of Fam, the Silver Wing that I did really enjoy was the bright colors that were present though out the series. In the original Last Exile the color pallet was more muted and stayed in a much more monotoned or even a somewhat antiqued look. For Fam, the Silver Wing the color were much more vibrant from the very beginning. It may have to do with them being back on Earth or possibly it was deemed necessary to set the two series apart. The simple truth is that the series maintained the beautiful edge that the original had plus a punch of color to top it off.


Overall Grade: A-

Most of Last Exile; Fam, the Silver Wing was a pleasure to watch and I had even more fun being re-united with many of the old favorites. If there wasn’t a tendency to get a bit melodramatic and off track in the middle of the series, I think Fam, the Silver Wing would have joined the original series as a classic. Unfortunately I think it felt a bit short, but none the less it is still a fun series that has plenty to offer.

Review By Andy