Archives for : Super Hero

Garo Season 2 Collection 1 (review)

Title: Garo TV Season 2 Collection 1

Director: Keita Amemiya, Makoto Yokoyama, Kengo Kaji & Ryu Kaneda

Network: TV Tokyo

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: Aug. 7th, 2018

Format: Blu-ray / 13 Episodes / 325 Minutes

Genre: Super Sentai, Super Hero, Action, Adventure

Age Rating: TV MA

Overall Personal Rating: C-


In the war against the nightmarish creatures known as Horrors, Mankind’s most formidable line of defense has always been the power of the Makai Knights. But now, one by one, the Knights are being mystically marked for death by a mysterious magic user in a crimson mask.

Even Kouga, the bearer of the golden GARO wolf armor, is among the afflicted, with the accursed mark slowly draining his strength, and making the use of his armor incredibly painful. Who is the Red Mask and how has he (or she) been able to target the Knights so effectively? All signs point to a betrayal from within their own ranks and now it’s up to Kouga, Rei, and the other Knights to track down their enemy while they’re still strong enough to defeat him!


Super Sentai is one of those genres that has given us the overrated Power Ranger but also continues to toss out mature series like Garo. Funny thing about Garo is that it really doesn’t need to be a mature series. Take out some nudity and dark unnecessary scenes you would have a series that is no better than the silly Power Rangers. I do miss the early days of Ultraman or even Jonny Socko and his flying Robot / Giant Robo. It is mush easier to deal with these super heroes if they didn’t take themselves so seriously.

I really want to like Kouga, but because of his overtly serious mood all the time he becomes someone I didn’t care for at all. Red and some of the other Makai Knights are easy to like and I wanted them to win and maybe even show Kouga a thing or two.  It never worked out that way and I ended up being sad.

Overall Grade: C-

I would love to say that the special effects are great and that the acting was wonderful, but that is not the way it is. I would also love to say that the stories were well written and insightful along with engrossing, but again that just isn’t the case. The one thing I can say is that the overall production values are above average (except for special effects).

Garo season two is for a very special audience. It is for those Super Sentai fans that need a little nudity and darkness to overshadow the basic story that provides creepy demons and over-the-top good guys. Garo will provide a great look at the Japanese super hero stories that we just don’t see over here and I do suggest seeing a few episodes just to experience this world.


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-


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!


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.

Tiger and Bunny vol. 4 (manga review)

Tiger & Bunny vol 4Title: Tiger and Bunny vol. 4

Art By: Mizuki Sakakibara

Planning / Original Story: Sunrise

Script: Masafumi Nishida

Character Development: Masakazu Katsura

U. S. Distributor: Viz Media

U. S. Release Date: Feb. 11th, 2014

Format: Manga, 184 pages

Genre: Sci Fi, Super Hero, Comedy, Action, Adventure, Seinen

Age Rating: T for teen

Overall Personal Rating: B+


The heroes face down the deranged NEXT killer, Lunatic. Lunatic’s vigilantism has the city on edge, and the heroes find themselves having to convince everyone that NEXT are working for the good of Stern Bild City. Lunatic is in the wrong, but there is much more to the madman than anyone knows.

All the while we find Origami, Tiger and Bunny asked to visit Origami and Bunny’s alma mater. This sends Origami into a real funk and makes him question his entire existence as a hero. Tiger is quick to be supportive and is also put on the spot by the students to judge their powers. Of course they all have very strange powers and it forces him to come up with powerful idea for them. All of his enthusiasm from Tiger  and Bunny just listening ends up helping  Origami out and giving him something that he has needed for a long time.

Bunny is still charging forward looking of anything or anyone connected to Ouroboros and when he gets the chance to confront Lunatic he learns something he would have never expected. Does Bunny get any closer to discovering the truth and will Origami become a Hero who is interested in being in the forefront rather the side line?


As much as I like the Tiger & Bunny anime, I must say that it is a much better story in manga form. I don’t typically have that reaction, but in the case of this series there is something more personal about these heroes that is not caught in the animation format. I get a much better sense of who these characters really are by the emotional essence of their personas thought the print media. I think that when animated everything moves rather fast and some of the nuances are lost. Most of the time voice acting is able to bring the character to life and portray the emotional aspects of the character, but for  Tiger and Bunny I see it the other way. It may also be this volume that brings that to the forefront because of Origami’s personal struggle.

This volume also is a great example of the difference between Japanese graphic novels and American Graphic Novels. In most American hero stories there might be some emotional issue that the characters are dealing with but they tend to be rather dark and depressing. In Tiger & Bunny and many other super hero style manga the personal issues tend to be somewhat more mundane or even something that most of the readers can connect with. There seems to be a real empathy for the reader that we just don’t get with many American stories. I’m not saying that it doesn’t happen, but most of the time the personal trauma’s are much more melodramatic and supercharges.  They just don’t spotlight a young mans lack of self confidence because he is having a hard believing in himself.

Overall Grade: B+

Tiger & Bunny is a many layered series that reaches across the ocean to try and blend with the west’s superhero genre and at the same time add that very eastern touch to the story. For all american comic and graphic arts fans I would seriously recommend Tiger & Bunny. I might not be as dark as the new generation heroes on our side of the pacific, but it does provide a great picture of a group of heroes that still have to live their lives just like everyone else.  Don’t be afraid to give it a try!