Archives for : Masaomi Ando

SCHOOL-LIVE! The Complete Collection

review provided by Luther

Title: SCHOOL-LIVE! on  Blu-Ray

Director: Masaomi Ando

Studio: Lerche

Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

Release Date: June 27th, 2017

Format: Blu-ray / 12 Episodes / 300 Minutes

Genre: Slice of life, Comedy, Horror, Mystery

Age Rating: TV 14+

Overall Personal Grade: A-


Why would anyone form a School Living Club? Could four girls, their advisor, and a puppy really love their school so much that they’d want to live in it? Or is there another reason, something that lurks behind the façade of their comfortable existence? Something that waits outside their school’s doors. Something that has already robbed one girl of her sanity? While the others try to come to grips with a dark new reality, the rest of the world falls to ruin at the hands of a ravenous force, and insanity may be the last hope for survival. Shocks, heartbreak and stunning revelations await as the twisted tale unfolds in School Live!


School Live! is a series that is constantly surprising the viewer with shocking, but not unreasonable, plot twists and is a show that is best enjoyed without knowing much about the plot or setting. My first time watching the series was when it was originally airing, and all I knew about it was the name of the show and what the main characters looked like. At the time I was under the assumption that the show was going to be a standard slice of life anime, but after the twist ending of the first episode I knew I was in for something much darker.

However, School Live! is not an entirely dark horror show. Rather School Live! is an interesting blend of lighthearted comedy about girls living at school woven in between the intense drama and troubled lives of people surviving a zombie apocalypse. While slice of life comedy and horror are two genre that seem to be complete opposes, but in School Life the two tonal differences provide a unique juxtaposition. The lighter element of the series provides comedic relief and gives the viewer time to get to know and feel for the different characters; whereas the horror elements gives rise to compelling narrative and a deep mystery.  

Incorporating horror elements in to this series also provided a different take on slice of life anime. In many slice of life anime, like Lucky Star or Nichijou, bazar characters or situations appear in the everyday lives of the characters with little to no reasonable explanation and exist solely for the joke. Yet, in School Live! when similarly strange comedic occurrences happen, like a club that lives at school or a professor with so little presence that people sitting next to her forget that she is there, they are often reviled later to be a direct result of the zombie apocalypse.

Overall rating: A-

Neither existing as purely a slice of life or a horror anime, School Live! may not be what serious fans of either genre would enjoy. Nevertheless it is an interesting compelling take on both of that genre, and continually left me wanting to watch more. While the English dubbing did not have the best casting and the animation quality left something to be desired, the interesting cast of characters and the gripping story more than made up for any of the show’s short comings.

Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse part 2 (anime review)

Muv - Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse part 2Title: Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse part 2

Director: Masaomi Ando

Written By: Takayuki Inagaki

Studio: ixtl, Satelight

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: May 12th, 2015

Format: Blu-ray / 13 Episodes / 325 Minutes

Genre: Mecha, Sci Fi, Action, Romance, Fan Service

Age Rating: TV MA

Overall Personal Rating: B-


Even in the face of annihilation by the invading BETA forces, the persistent hostilities between the surviving nations continue to undermine mankind’s chances for survival. Desperate to gain the Type 99, the Soviet Command puts not only their own pilots but the rest of the human race on the firing line as they sabotage the Kamchatka base self-destruct codes in an attempt to salvage the railgun for their own purposes.

Caught in the crossfire, Yuuya, Yui, and the other TSF pilots must fight their way to safety through a nightmarish series of traps and counter-traps before the base is bombed or the BETA take them all. Only a series of heroic sacrifices can save them, and that’s just the beginning of the danger. The mysterious arrival of an unidentified TSF and an escalating competition to dominate the new world’s power and military structures ignite a new chain of events that further threaten to undercut humanity’s chances.


Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse part 2 follows up with the end of the series that proves that sometime you can mix fan service with a darker mecha and see it succeed to a reasonable result. I’ve see plenty of other series take a much more ecchi approach and miss the mark. Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse manages to give us a story only get distracted by bouncing boobs a little. Of course the girls are highlighted changing into their pilot suites in a way that highlights their endowments which left me a little disappointed.

Now I’m not saying that I don’t enjoy the female form, on the contrary, I find women delightful but when you are trying to tell a serious story I find the distraction of fan service is misplaced. If we can get past the tight suites and partial nudity the story still needs to stand on its own. This is where the animation may be the saving grace and the writing comes across as something a little more pedestrian.

Overall Grade: B-

I was very hopeful for Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse part 2 and discovered that some stories should stick to one focus. Being a genuine fan of any solid Sci Fi stories that can entertain I found myself getting sucked into the series and then tossed back out. The unevenness of the story and the overall flatness if the writing left me wanting something completely different.

I am confident that the series will retain its true fan base and sell plenty of copies. I also thought that the series looked good and on Blu-ray it stood out with a relative higher quality than I see in other series lately. So, if the sexy mecha is your bag then you should head on over and start with Muv-Luv from the beginning.