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Akame ga Kill Collection 2 (anime review)

akame-ga-kill 2Title: Akame ga Kill Collection 2

Director: Tomoki Kobayashi

Creator: Takahiro

Written By: Makoto Uezu

Studio: White Fox, C-Station (ONA)

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: May 17th, 2016

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

Genre: Fantasy, Action, Supernatural, Drama

Age Rating: TV14

Overall Personal Rating: B+

Synopsis:

The convoluted path that has reunited Tatsumi and Esdeath takes another twist as they find themselves transported to a remote island where their strength will be tested as never before. Dr. Stylish may be dead, but Danger Beasts still remain, and that’s only the first challenge the two enemies now face.

If the bonds of love weren’t enough to bring their fates together, could the fire of combat forge a new form of alliance? Meanwhile, the embers of rebellion are being stoked into open insurrection by the pacifist organization Path of Peace. Drawn into the impending inferno, Night Raid and the Revolutionary Army prepare for a major assault on the Capital. But while their Imperial Arms may be indestructible, their wielders are merely flesh and blood.

On the anvil of battle, only human courage and the willingness to give their lives for a cause will lead to the ultimate triumph or failure in collection 2 of Akame ga Kill!

Commentary:

As series go Akame ga Kill is a little above average, but I was very concerned at the end of the first 12 episodes. I have seen all too many anime that started out with a solid story line that ended up become over indulgent and failed to bring it to a reasonable conclusion. Akame ga Kill manages to make it clear that the story is over and also does something very interesting for a mythic tail of heroes, it gives us closure with the characters.

Without giving anything away I have to say that I was a little emotionally wound up by some of the events and more than once felt both excited and sad by the battles fought.

Overall Grade: B+

I really like the second half of the Akame ga Kill  for what it was. The myth of the hero and the battle for what is right cam sometimes cross lines that both corrupt a moral existence but at the same time exact a price that can be too heavy to bear. When all is said Akame ga Kill manages to find a way to give us finality and hope at the same time.

If you are looking for a real action anime with lots of side plots and a harem tossed in to make it more interesting then Akame ga Kill it the one for you. I often find harm anime rather silly and only a very few make any sense, as for Akame ga Kill the story came together because of the harem and without the love story tossed in the plot would have been less favorable and entertaining. This is a winner and is worth the time to check it out.

 

Azumanga Daioh Complete Collection (anime review)

azumanga-daiohTitle: Azumanga Daioh Complete Collection

Director: Hiroshi Nishikiori

Studio: J.C.Staff

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Re-release Date: May 3rd, 2016

Format: DVD / 26 Episodes / 650 Minutes

Genre: Comedy, Absurdity, Slice of Life

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: A-

Synopsis:

For the members of Miss Yukari’s English Class, a typical day may be just a little unusual. Part of that’s due to Miss Yukari herself, whose teaching style (and personal ethics) tend to be odd, improvisational and spontaneous, but her students are just as unconventional: There’s 10-year-old Chiyo, still at the top of her class after skipping five grades, and her opposite Ayumu “Osaka” Kasuga, whose poor grades are surpassed only by her horrific skill at sports. Then there’s Tomo, a competitive slacker who puts excessive energy into doing very little, and Koyomi, whose surprising maturity is compromised by a malevolent sense of humor. Tall, statuesque Sakaki’s athletic exterior hides both unexpected shyness and a most unfortunate obsession with cats, while tiny Kaori’s heart is mainly obsessed with Sakaki. They may all seem like perfectly normal girls on the outside, but even their most mundane activities magically become the most extraordinary adventures as they learn all about life, the universe and affairs of the heart in AZUMANGA DAIOH!

Commentary:

I was very happy to see that Sentai Filmworks was going to bring this gem back to life. The series as a whole is rather wonderful with its simple yet complex look on life and a rather perverted view of itself. I truly enjoy it for its rather absurd approach to the story and the silly character development.

The other aspect that I loved was the general happiness that ran throughout each episode. Azumanga Daioh is a older series that deserves to remain in the current lexicon on anime.

Overall Grade: A-

Okay, Anime fans lets set the record straight there are plenty of older anime series that should never get re-issued and plenty of series that should have never made their way over to North America. In the case of Azumanga Daioh neither of these are true. This series should have gotten picked up the day the original license was dropped. Thank you Sentai Filmworks for bringing this back to us. There is a whole new generation of anime fans that need to see this series just because it is great and a smile factory.

If you don’t own this series you must go out and buy it now. You will not be appointed.

Gasaraki Complete Series (anime review)

gasarakiTitle: Gasaraki: The Complete Series

Director: Ryousuke Takahashi

U.S. Distributor: Right Stuf / Nozomi

U.S. Re-Release Date: May 3rd, 2016

Format: DVD / 625 Minutes / 25 Episodes

Genre: Mecha, Supernatural

Age Rating: 13+

Overall Personal Grade: A-

Similar Titles: Evangelion

One of the most poignant phrases that haunts humans is “History always repeats itself”. There are many tragic dances that burn in the flames of time and never quite seem to be completed.

Synopsis:

Japan has become fat on its own prosperity and have begun to get more involved in world politics. The Gowa family with their power base and industrial complex have developed bipedal weapons that they call Tactical Armor or T. A.. There is something special about the way they react and it all appears to hinge on how Yushiro Gowa performs. There is a deep seeded bond between man and machine but this bond does not seem to be natural, but rather supernatural.

With strife and war breaking out in eastern Europe the Gowa Organization and the Japanese military use this chase to see these new weapons in action. Unknown to them another organization, Symbol, has developed their  own T. A.s and when the two meet the Gowa team have their hands full.  The key to their team is young girl named Miharu, who had appeared to Yushiro during a ceremony when he was about to resurrect some unknown power that heir family is noted as holding the key to. This power was supposedly given to them by the God Gasaraki.

Once back in Japan Yushiro discover a terrible truth about himself that puts him on the path to uncover the truth about his history. This path leads him directly into the depths of the Gowa history as he discovers that he is what is know as a Kai, the one who can control the giant warrior the Kugai. He ends up fighting Miharu while piloting the Kugai and manages to defeat her. Knowing that there is a connection they both run off to discover their past. In this search they discover that they are connected for over 1000 years and what their terrible purpose just might be.

The power of the Gowa and a highly idealistic Japanese visionary leads Japan to the brink of destruction. The key lies with both Yushiro and Miharu. Will they repeat the nightmare of the past or can they overcome their history and find a new path?

Commentary:

Even though 1998 seems so long ago it is great to take this trip back to see this highly dramatic series. There is so much going on with Gasaraki that it take 5 episodes to get a grip on what is happening. The blend of Japanese myth and modern day technology gives a special edge to the series. This is topped off by the heavy drama that is played out. There are very few light moments and that might be the one area of weakness. The heaviness takes it toll at times and you almost have to take a breath to relax in order to move on. That is not to say that the series is depressing, because I did not find it to be a downer in any way, it just takes itself very seriously.

As I moved through the Gasaraki I found myself coming up with plenty of questions regarding the history of this intense family and how these two young people were really connected to it. I was very happy to see them and us get a solid understanding of the past which suddenly proved to be very poignant. It opened the plot line up and exposed the mysteries that lay beneath the surface. I must admit that there were times that I found Yushiro and Miharu a bit flat and mono dimensional but in many ways it works to their advantage as the series progressed and explained who and what they really are.

Overall Grade: A-

There are several series out there that deserve a second chance through the arena and Gasaraki is one of those series. If you have not seen Gasaraki and are a fan of Mecha intertwine with supernatural elements then this one is up you’re ally. If you just enjoy a serious series that gives plenty of action then you should take the time to enjoy it.

Yamishibai: Japanese Ghost Stories (anime review)

yamishibaireview provided by Katie and Andrew

Title: Yamishibai: Japanese Ghost Stories-Complete Collection

Director: Tomoya Takashima

Studio: ILCA

Author: Hiromu Kumamoto

U.S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U.S. Release Date: April 19, 2016

Format and Length: Blu-ray / 26 Episodes / 117 Minutes

Genre: Horror

Industry Age Rating: 14 and up

Overall Personal Rating: B

Similar Series or Titles to Check Out: Corpse Party and Ghost Stories

“Tonk Tonk Tonk” “Step right up and have a look… It’s time for Yamishibai.”

Synopsis:

Ghosts. Curses. Demons. If you crave tales of terror and seek mysteries that defy explanation, go to the park at 5. That is when the man in the yellow mask will arrive with his kamishibai, the paper theater, to tell his sinister stories of Japan’s darkest side. But be warned, this storyteller’s works may do more than simply send shivers down your spine. As they say, the more fascinated you become with the supernatural, the more the supernatural may become fascinated with you.

Enter a world where the closest of friends can become the deadliest of enemies, where the most mundane of objects can become hair-raising nightmares, and not even one’s own family can be trusted to remain human. Dare to pierce the veil of darkness and a realm of ultimate horror awaits as you discover Yamishibai – Japanese Ghost Stories!

Commentary:

You read on the outer cover “Complete Collection” “Seasons one & two”. You open the BD box to see one disc. “What darkness was used to cram two seasons on one disc?”

This is the story of a particular anime series called Yamishibai Japanese Ghost Stories, based on random horror story shorts, as each story or episode is 5 minutes with 1:15 eaten by the opening and ending. They are very reminiscent of childhood campfire stories, basically the same type of stories that you sat around a campfire, cooking smores and burning marshmallows on a stick, and told to try to scare the crap out of your friends. The stories, while being well within the G rating, tend to be more on the creepy side then really scary. There is nothing gory; no blood, guts, or anything like that, considering they are written for kids watching the afternoon cartoons after school. Nothing jumps out of nowhere and there is little sudden movement due to the style of the animation. While most of the stories will not scare you, and some may seem silly and predictable, Yamishibai Japanese Ghost Stories does a great job of manufacturing a creepy feeling. Regardless of age, most will enjoy them, if you like creepy, horror, or urban legend stuff. Most of the stories end a bit open and leave them for the audiences’ interpretation. The animation itself is choppy, has little movement in the way of people, mouths or constant changing of background. The animation is shaped after an ancient Japanese form of storytelling that started around the 12th century called Kamishibai (literal translation Paper Drama). The animation looks like paper cutouts moved around with a background behind them. It’s the Japanese version of the puppet shows. The animation does take some getting used to and at first I had a hard time with it. After a while the animation actually enhances the creepy aspects of Yamishibai Japanese Ghost Stories. This half of the review was written after watching only the first season.

Season one… A-

This is the story of a strange anime series called Yamishibai Japanese Ghost Stories. This is covering the second season magically graphed on the first season disk. They are still horror short stories crammed into a five minute run time. I can no longer compare them to the campfire story telling. I am not really sure what to compare them to. After Dark? Those silly spooky story books you got from the book fair at school? All the smores were eaten and all that remains are the ashes of the logs from the night before. You have now woken up to the horrors of packing up camp and heading out. The stories changed. Now more a PG rating, gory imagery replaced the subtle and very effective method of storytelling that had previously been used. Having replaced the dark imagery with more a macabre scenery and well placed silence with excessively ineffective and unneeded dialog, the stories lost the perfectly manufactured spookiness and left if for a more laughable place. The stories abandoned the open endedness and left nothing for the audiences’ interpretation, one of the strongest features that made the first season work. The other feature that made the first season was the kamishibai style animation. It changed to more a hybrid with a lot more movement and less eerie stillness that help make it all work.

Season Two. . . . .D

Extras:

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

Overall Grade: B 

Season 2 did not detract from my enjoyment of season 1. Overall Yamishibai Japanese Ghost Stories lost some of what made it work well after the first season; I would still recommend it for those who loved being the one that told the story that made your friends unable to sleep in their sleeping bags for fear of what may have been inside the darkness held within.

Monthly Girls Nozaki-kun (anime review)

monthy-girls-nozaki-kunTitle: Monthly Girls Nozaki-kun Complete Collection

Directed by: Yoshiko Nakamura

Written by: Yukari Hashimoto

Created by: Izumi  Tsubaki

Studio: Dogakobo

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

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

Format: Blu-ray / 12 Episodes / 300 Minutes

Genre: Romantic Comedy

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: A-

Synopsis:

You know how the story goes: girl crushes on guy, girl confesses feelings to guy, guy mistakes confession for a job application.

Okay, maybe that’s not how it usually goes, but that’s what happens when Chiyo Sakura finally gets up the nerve to tell her classroom crush Nozaki how she feels. Since she doesn’t know that he’s secretly a manga artist who publishes under a female pen name, and he doesn’t know that she doesn’t know, he misunderstands and offers her a chance to work as his assistant instead of a date!

But while it’s not flowers and dancing, it is a chance to get closer to him, so Chiyo gamely accepts. And when Nozaki realizes how useful Chiyo can be in figuring out what girls find romantic, he’ll be spending even more time with her “researching” while remaining completely clueless. Could Chiyo’s romantic frustration possibly get any more drawn out of proportion? The answer will be profusely illustrated in Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun!

Commentary:

I was very weary going into this anime. I have seen plenty silly romantic comedies that were just one gussy scene after another. Monthly Girls Nozaki-kun manages to take this basic plot line and turn it into a very funny and enjoyable comedy. I found myself laughing out loud from the first episode all the way through to the last.

The real strength to the series is the writing. I thought the character development was well above par and the dialog superior to most romantic comedies being produced lately. The cast of characters was a great fit for the strangeness of the series and with there only being 12 episodes things kept moving at a perfect pace.

Overall Grade: A-

The only thing that I found disappointing was the high pitched persona of Chiyo. She managed to be a little annoying, and too shy about her crush. Other than that the blend of odd ball characters managed to keep the laughs coming and the relationship between Yuzuki and Wakamatsu. They appear to make a totally mismatched couple but are really perfect for each other and Wakamatsu is just a pushover for her and doesn’t even see it.

Anyway, Monthly Girls Nozaki-kun is a blast and I recommend it to everyone. I think almost every anime fan will find something about this series that they can appreciate and get plenty of laughs to go along with it. On other thing, I love Tonuki.

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

mobile-suit-zeta-gundamTitle: Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam Collection Two on Blu-ray

Director: Yoshiyuki Tomino

Studio: Sunrise

U. S. Distributor: Nozomi/ Right Stuf

U. S. Release Date: April 5th, 2016

Format: Blu-ray / 25 Episodes / 625 Minutes

Genre: Mecha, Sci Fi

Age Rating: TV14

Overall Personal Rating: B

Synopsis:

A new force enters the Universal Century conflict. Can the A.E.U.G. fight a war on two fronts?

The Universal Century world is locked into an escalating conflict. While the A.E.U.G. resistance group strives to convince the world of the justice of its cause, the brutal Titans continue to suppress dissent through violence and fear. Now the struggle enters a new phase as a powerful third force enters the battlefield, and the A.E.U.G. and Titans race to enlist the support of the mysterious Axis renegades. Confronted with his past, Char Aznable at last decides to embrace his role as leader of the A.E.U.G. But his choice may have come too late, for the Titans have completed their most terrible and devastating weapon.

Commentary:

In the world know as Gundam there are often conflicting messages, but one thing stands true, women make great shields. I think Zeta has the greatest body count of martyrs than any other Gundam series. The one thing that runs through most of this plot devise is that most of them die for the wrong person.

Zeta Gundam is still one of my favorite series of the franchise and yet it manages to frustrate me and remind me how backward much of the mindset set was back in the 1980’s. I am not proud to say that I come from the era and less proud to relive the foolishness that was viewed as high entertainment in the anime world,

Overall Grade: B

The series as a whole is good enough and is clearly a stand out in the Gundam universe. I know that there are a good deal of fans that will climb over each other to get their hands on this series and plenty that will stand back and scratch their heads. I do understand the fandom, I may not always agree with it but I get it.

So, all you Gundam fan get your Zeta hats on and get ready for part two of the Mobile Suite Zeta Gundam series to hit the store shelves. I know you will like it.

Celestial Method (anime review)

celestial-methodTitle: Celestial Method the Complete Series on Blu-ray

Director: Masayuki Sakoi

Writer: Naoki Hisaya

Studio: Studio 3Hz

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

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

Genre: Slice of Life, Fantasy

Age Rating: TV PG

Overall Personal Rating: A

Synopsis:

It’s been seven years since Nonoka Komiya last lived in Lake Kiriya City. However, while she knew that there would be changes in the town, she’s still unprepared for what she finds upon her return: A giant saucer hovers over the entire city, as it has since shortly after she and her family left.

Stranger yet, a girl she doesn’t know, Noel, is waiting for her, claiming that they have met before. Confused, Nonaka tries to focus on reconnecting with her old friends, but odd memories, suppressed in the wake of her mother’s death, begin to float to the top of her consciousness.

Can it be that she has met Noel before? And how does this connect with the appearance of the saucer itself? To solve the riddle, Nonoka must join with her friends and rediscover the events that occurred before she left Lake Kiriya. Because there’s more than a mystery that must be solved: there’s a promise that has to be kept in Celestial Method.

Commentary:

There is one thin that can be said about anime and that is that it covers a great deal of ground from hard edge dramas to silly strange comedies. Celestial Method is a series that is dear and sweet that explores friendship and the bonds that transcend space and time. There is also a very buhhdist  idealism running through it regarding connections and happiness.

I found much of Celestial Method to be a reminder of Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day in how it approached the groups of friends but with the group not being so damaged there was a sweeter side of them coming back together. This kindness made the series a great fit for the younger audience.

Overall Grade: A

I realize that it might seem strange seeing Celestial Method as a top notch anime, but there is something very simple and heartwarming about it that made it great. Celestial Method is another example of a anime geared toward a younger audience that was not  given and English dud and that for me is a great mishap. I know that older viewers won’t have any issues with the subtitles, but it would be wonderful if there was a English dub for those viewers under 11 or 12. Over the last 12 to 18 months there have been a good number of anime that fall into that category and each one of them have been solid titles that would have helped foster a new generation of anime fans. Alas, they will just have to wait until they are older and only want to do sub-titles.

As you can read, I really like Celestial Method. It is a solid little anime which offers a tad bit of a tear jerk at the end, but all in all it reminds you of the friendship. So, if you are in the mood for heartwarming story about a small group of friends then Celestial Method is something you should see.

Akame ga Kill Collection 1(anime review)

814131018571_anime-akame-ga-kill-blu-rayTitle: Akame ga Kill Collection 1

Director: Tomoki Kobayashi

Creator: Takahiro

Written By: Makoto Uezu

Studio: White Fox, C-Station (ONA)

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: February 9th, 2016

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

Genre: Fantasy, Action, Supernatural, Drama

Age Rating: TV14

Overall Personal Rating: B+

Synopsis: 

When he set off for the Capital, all Tatsumi wanted was a way to make money. Instead, he finds himself rescued from a fate worse than death by a group of assassins known as Night Raid, and thrust into the middle of a bloody revolution. On the one side: Prime Minister Honest, his secret police, elite squad of assassins, and the armies of the Empire. On the other: Night Raid and a handful of rebels desperate to overthrow the brutal regime of Honest’s puppet emperor. Leveling the playing field: the Imperial Arms, a legendary set of unstoppable weapons created in the distant past. But to use an Imperial Arm is practically a death sentence, for only a select few can even survive using them… and when two Arms go against each other, only the user of one is likely to survive in Akame ga Kill!

Commentary:

I really like to say that Akame ga Kill is something new and different, but I just can’t. It is very entertaining and full of action. Akame ga Kill just falls into the trap of being another action anime that isn’t so worried about the plot but rather the movement across the screen. Akame ga Kill proved elements of being a harem, a supernatural drama and a fantasy series that provides plenty of battles with blood splattering all over the place. Why is it that we never meet the cleaning crew and the cloths washers. With these characters only having one set of close I would think that the cloths washers are always on hand and ready to scrub the blood out of teams duds. It might be interesting to see a comedy anime about these magical creatures and their washing skills. I would think they are prized employee no matter what action/fantasy/horror anime was in favor.

Overall Grade: B+

Even though I don’t find anything new or different about Akame ga Kill I still find a fun watch. It is fast and packed with action, albeit bloody, along with plenty of pretty girls. I guess that the thing that I find interesting is what is going to happen when Tatsumi is fitted with Imperial Arms that bring out his true power. I am guessing that in the second half of the series w will find out what makes him so special and if his stalker will get him back into her loving arms.

Akame ga Kill isn’t for everyone, but I think it will find broad appeal. If the Attack on Titan crowd discover it they just might make a huge hit. So, if you enjoy a fun, fast, action packed anime with plenty of splattering blood the Akame ga Kill is for you.

My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU: The Complete Collection on Blu-ray (anime review)

My-Teen-Romantic-Comedy-SNAFUreview provided by Katie and Andrew

Title: My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU: The Complete Collection

Director: Ai Yoshimura

Studio: Brian’s Base

Author: Shotaro Suga

U.S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U.S. Release Date: September 1, 2015

Format and Length: Blu-ray / 13 Episodes / 325 Minutes

Genre: Comedy, Romance, School

Industry Age Rating: 14 and up

Overall Personal Rating: B+

Similar Series or Titles to Check Out: The Pet Girl of Sakurasou, WataMote: No Matter How I Look At It, It’s You Guys’ Fault I’m Unpopular, Haganai, and Haganai: NEXT

Synopsis:

Caution! Opposites may attract, but putting them together may result in chemical burns, electric shocks, and explosions. Enter Hachiman Hikigaya, a pessimistic high school student with no friends and absolutely no interest in making any, and the firm belief that everyone else’s cherished high school experiences are either delusions or outright lies. Hachiman finds himself forcibly coerced by his well-meaning student advisor into joining the one member Service Club. There he encounters club founder Yukino Yukinoshita, a smart, attractive, walking superiority complex who looks down on the entire student body.

These two negative personalities are quick to attract Yui Yuigahama, who’s cute, bright, cheerful, and needs the Service Club’s help to… bake cookies as she should not be allowed in a kitchen by herself. Is this a recipe for romance or the precursor for a nuclear meltdown? Will there be cookies or a reason for everyone to play hooky? Get ready for rom-com gone totally wrong as the three members of the Service Club is unleashed on the unsuspecting student body!

Commentary:

My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU: The Complete Collection is the opposite of a rom-com but at the same time it is one as well it just depends on the episode. My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU: The Complete Collection gives you a fresh and exciting spin on anime stereotypes that will leave you bawling in laughter. The storyline is mostly episodic and character-driven. The last few episodes flow together but the rest of the episodes do not need to be watched in order after the first episode.

My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU: The Complete Collection really gets its characters and empathizes with them, but it does not make excuses for them. The characters are wonderful and well thought-out. Hachiman Hikigaya, or Hiki, is your cynical and somewhat pessimistic lead male character and his dissections of everyday occurrences and his appreciation for the little things in life bring hilarity to the story. The way he thinks and acts changes drastically throughout the course of the show as he meets new people and learns more about how to be a friend. Yukino Yukinoshita is the incredibly cunning and calculative tsundere of the series. She and Hiki are in the same boat when referring to lack of friends because she lacks them due to her perceived perfection and elitist attitude; while Hiki lacks them for his mistrust of others and cynical behavior. It was amazing to watch them grow on each other in a way that is not very predictable, but extremely well done. Yiu Yiugahama is the air-headed and inexplicable nice member of the group and serves as the glue that sticks them together with her much needed comical outbreaks and genuine emotions.

The animators brought these characters to life and it was amazing to watch. The character designs were bright and the facial expressions added the realism to the series. The opening and closing songs were fun to listen to and were easy to sing-along with. The voice actors did a great job and helped bring the characters to life before your eyes.

Extras:

My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU: The 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+

My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU: The Complete Collection has made it onto my list of favorite series and I found it quite enjoyable. It is a refreshing and interesting take on the rom-com genre. I hope that there is a second season released soon so the story can be wrapped up.

Atelier, Escha & Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky – The Complete Collection (anime review)

Atelier, Escha & Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky review provided by Katie and Andrew

Title: Atelier, Escha & Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky – The Complete Collection

Director: Yoshiaki Iwasaki

Studio: Studio Gokumi

Author: Tatsuhiko Urahata

U.S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U.S. Release Date: July 7, 2015

Format and Length: Blu-ray / 12 Episodes / 300 Minutes

Genre: Fantasy, Adventure, Magic

Industry Age Rating: 14 and up

Overall Personal Rating: B

Similar Series or Titles to Check Out: .hack//Sign and Shining Hearts

Synopsis:

Ever since Escha Malier was a child, she has held two dreams deep in her heart. Those dreams are to become an Alchemist like her late mother and to one day explore the mysterious ruins that float in the sky above her home town. After years of study, she is ready to make her first dream come true by working in the R&D branch of her town’s Alchemy department. However, while she has all the knowledge and skills required to do the job, she is not quite as ready for her new coworker, Logix, or Logy, Fiscario. Escha and Logy seem to be total opposites, in everything from their attitudes on life, to where they grew up, and to the tools they prefer to use why performing Alchemy. But they must remember that when one person alone cannot save the world, the two of them working in harmony can.

Commentary:

Atelier, Escha & Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky – The Complete Collection is an adaptation of one installment in a series of role-playing games that was very enjoyable to watch. This series was almost like a slice of fantasy life because it was so episodic, however some episodes did flow together and those were the action packed episodes. Atelier, Escha & Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky – The Complete Collection also did something that other video game adaptation series usually do not do, they put the background information when necessary up on the screen so that you are not left on the dark. I am very thankful for that and it also made the series that much more enjoyable.

The characters were not deep nor did they change too much throughout the series. I believe they did this to push you to play the games. They also hinted to a relationship between Logy and Escha but they also left that up in the air. I am hoping for a second season as the ending hinted to one but you never know. The entire series focused on the fact that everyone has to work together to save the world and that one person cannot do it alone.

The animation included heavy CGI use within the battle scenes. I believe this took away from those scenes; however the other animation was well done. The voice actors were perfect for each of their characters and I would not change any of them. The opening and closing songs were laid back and quite enjoyable. I found myself singing along after a few episodes.

Extras:

Atelier, Escha & Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky – The Complete Collection includes clean opening and closing animations along with Sentai Filmworks trailers as special features. This series was released with Japanese with English subtitles as the only language option.

Overall Grade: B

Atelier, Escha & Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky – The Complete Collection is actually a good series that was based off a video game. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good adventure or fantasy series.