Tag Archives: Anime

CALLING ALL ANIME BLOGGERS AND FANS! WE WANT YOU!

I love collab posts, but you would probably be very surprised that I haven’t done many of them. Weird isn’t it? But….no worries, now that I am finally back from my hiatus, I’m working on some pretty cool ones. This one though, takes things to a new level and I am very excited about it to say the least. I was having a very interesting discussion with Ayano from KawaiPaperpandas and as a result well….I will let Ayano do the talking here, as she can explain it even better than I can. In fact she already has, just click on the post below to see what this is all about. So….I can’t wait to see how this is all going to work out: but in short: This is going to be so much fun!! Hopefully you are all as excited about it as both Ayano and I am 😊 And please spread the word as much as you can if you would be so kind. It is very much appreciated 😀

 

KAWAIIPAPERPANDAS

Gooood morning my pandas! It is currently 11:00 am in the lovely state of Oregon and I am ready to go!!!

Y’all are probably wondering what the heck I’m up to huh? Well I’ll tell you! Raistlin and I were having a little chat the other day and we came up with a pretty extensive project…but we need YOUR help! As most of you guys in the blogging community know the Crunchyroll Anime Awards for 2017 were pretty fucking garbage. To say I was disappointed by the results is an understatement.

Some time ago Raistlin and I thought, “Hey…why not make an awards panel of our own?” We played around with the idea for a bit after the results for the Crunchyroll Awards made an appearance but I didn’t think anything of it…UNTIL NOW.

Now I am reaching out to you my pandas! We are holding a so called…

View original post 347 more words

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Build a Harem tag!

There are certain times in my life when I feel like a total noob (erm what am I saying, there are a lot of times when I feel like this). In the world of anime people are probably surprised to learn how many different genres there are within that fantastic medium. And this inspires a lot of anime bloggers out there to create some awesome tags. Take the wonderful Cactus Matt from Anime Q and A for instance. He created the “Build a Harem” tag. Now what the heck is that I can hear you ask. Erm…yes…erm…that was my question as well. And it got worse when I also got nominated for it by LinaMerlin and Arthifis. Really? I smell a conspiracy here. And just after I published this, I found out that I had been nominated 40 minutes earlier by The Otaku Judge  as well so yeah conspiracy 🙂 But I truly thank you guys and girl, for nominating me (erm…I think). I have to my knowledge never seen an Harem anime, so I really had to do some research to find out what this all meant.

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Just let the man explain already!!!

It turns out to be rather straightforward actually. A central character is surrounded by three or more male or female characters that are usually romantically attracted to that  character (really why doesn’t something like that happen in real life? Ahem…moving on). With that out of the way, now I had to do some research on the type of characters that are featured in these (wow, this almost feels like homework now lol). But I guess, I figured it out…well…at least I think I have (Naw…You are just seeing things, I’m totally not sweating here). So….as always: here are the:

Rules:

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Why are there always rules?? So boring!!
  1. Link back to the original post on Anime Q and A so they can check out everyone’s picks!
  2. Use the ‘Build A Harem’ logo somewhere in the post.
  3. Make sure to mention the person who nominated you too!
  4. Pick 5 Anime Characters (any show & any gender) that would be in your ideal harem if you were the main character of a harem anime, explain a little bit as to why they are your picks (if you want).
  5. Make sure each character you pick falls into some of the following harem character types: Childhood friend, tom boy/girl, genki girl/boy, loli/shota, trap, tsundere, yandere, kuudere, dandere, etc. (If there’s a character you’ve picked that doesn’t specifically fall into one of these types or falls into multiple types that’s fine too!)
  6. Nominate 5 people to participate in this tag!

1. The childhood friend-Naho Takamiya from Orange

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Me??? Really???

So many people hated this character. Mainly because of the fact that she seemed to really make stupid choices or what seemed very odd reactions to the guy she was in love with. I didn’t hate her at all though. In fact I could totally relate to her, because she was the female version of me. When I am in love I tend to do stupid things, and totally freeze up when I get to talk to the girl I love (or in other words I am always afraid to let my true feelings out). So yeah…childhood friend for sure, as I think we would get along very well.

2. The Tomboy Girl-Motoki Kusanagi from Ghost in the Shell

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How dare you call me a tomboy!!

Hmm, this was a tough one. And the Major (still my alltime favorite anime character, and she probably will be right up until I die) might even seem an odd choice for this category. When you look up the definition of a tomboy on Google (and Lina did this research as well, she is always very determined), there are so many definitions for that exact word. Still I think Motoko Kusanagi could definitely fill this slot. The way she acts, and the things she does more than qualify as masculine, even though she is still a hot as hell woman. So…yeah…I’m sticking with the Major for this one.

3. The Tsundure-Asuna Yuuki from Sword Art Online

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Is it hot in here? Or is that just me?

This one I really had to look up, as I had never heard of this word. Tsundure is apparently a character who is initially very cold, or hostile towards someone, until eventually warming up. For this I had only one choice: Asuna. When she first met Kirito, I think she redefined the word cold. And we all know of course how that eventually ended. I would truly dread meeting her when she was first like this, and would probably either run away, or try to grovel before her. (Probably the last, because really…just look at her). So for that last reason alone…she just had to be in my harem.

4. The Kuudure-Touka Kirishima from Tokyo Ghoul

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Yes…I’m giving you ” the stare”…….

So…ofcourse I totally knew what this one meant. You believe me right? Erm….not that convincing am I? Okay I guess you all knew it but apparently this is a character that seems very cold and indifferent, but actually is very caring. Having watched the first two seasons of Tokyo Ghoul (wait…what? You did that? Why on Earth did you not review it Raistlin??!!!), I can only think of Touka for this one. I instantly fell in love with her when she first shows up. I loved her cool demeanor, total badassery, but also the depth she had. She just had to be added….obviously.

5. The Yandere-Lum from Urusei Yatsura

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Aww….she is so cute….just wait till you get to know her though.

Aww….last one already?? Yup…and I decided to go with the Yandere type. I got you covered: it’s a character that is totally romantically obsessed by someone to the point of using violent means to get them in their arms. And that is Lum all over. This tigerstriped bikini clad beauty is probably not known by many of you as she is featured in an anime series that ran in the 80’s. She looks gorgeous doesn’t she? Don’t let this alien princess fool you though…she will use any means necessary to get her darling (that is what she calls the poor boy that is the object of her affection), even using electrocution. Oh well…I would not mind being chased by her…not at all….

I choose…..you!!!

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Honestly this tag has gotten so big, that I have kind of lost track who has already been tagged, so if you already got nominated for this one, feel free to ignore it. And if you haven’t and don’t want to do this one, I totally understand as well. My nominees are….

1. Shokamoka (Well I know that you have already been nominated, but I just want to let you know in this way that I miss seeing you here)

2. Flowangelic (Yup, this just had to be done)

3.Lynlynsays (Seeing as you recently featured a post on a reverse harem and I simply love your blog)

4. Cain.S.Latrani (Well…do I really need to explain? I just think you are awesome, and I know for a fact that you would probably make a seriously funny post for this one)

5. Pete Davison (Because I think this tag has you written all over it, and your blog is incredible and more people need to discover it)

Have fun with it! And as I said no pressure at all to this. Now I leave you all with the Major….because, really…why not?

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Sigh….he really is obsessed with me……

 

 

 

 

Sword Art Online-Ordinal Scale, Japanese (animated) movie (2017)

The world of computergames is vast. Some say it is currently one of the biggest entertainment mediums, bigger even than Hollywood movies. Many of you already know this but I used to be a very fanatical gamer. One could argue that I was so fanatical that it wasn’t even healthy anymore. But that’s a thing of the past now, as I have stopped playing computergames altogether, well on consoles that is. I do play the occasional game on my Ipad, but that’s nowhere near the level of games that I was used to playing. Games these days are becoming ever more immersive, with virtual reality being one of the latest trends. Putting on special goggles, gamers can experience the gaming world in a way that is almost lifelike. I do say almost, as of course the technology isn’t anywhere close to the things you sometimes see in science fiction movies. Two years ago, around the time when my blog was up and running for a few months, I discovered the anime Sword Art Online, which focusses heavily on virtual reality gaming. It fast became one of my alltime favorite animeseries and now I have a huge collection of merchandise from that series (proving once again my point that I can truly become obsessed when I like something).

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Don’t look now, but I think you might have something stuck in your ear.

Last year a movie that was a follow-up to the series saw the light of day, and now I finally had the chance to see this one for myself as it was released on dvd two weeks ago. (Well here in Europe anyway). Was it worth the wait? Hell yeah it was! It is the year 2026, and the world is under the spell of the Augma device, a new system that allows players all over the world to simulate reality while still being conscious. As a few years prior players became trapped in a virtual reality game called Sword Art online, that used a full dive system, this new device is deemed much safer. We once again meet up with Kirito and Asuna, both survivors of the horrible SOA event, and not surprisingly both are also using the Augma to play the newest and most popular game Ordinal Scale. Although Kirito doesn’t seem to be enjoying himself as much. But then a new event is introduced to the game: old boss monsters from the Sword Art Online world begin appearing accompanied by the mysterious AI idol singer Yuna. What at first seems like a fun and welcome addition to the game, soon begins to take on a much more sinister shape. With Asuna’s life on the line, Kirito has to find out what is going on, before it’s too late. But it might already be too late, for Kirito seems to have met his match in the form of a player that is able to counter his every move….

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Gotta love Asuna’s new look in this film.

Sword Art Online is a series that is hated upon by a lot of animefans. I’m not going to start up that old discussion as I am here to talk about this movie. Suffice it to say though that I am a huge fan of this anime, in fact so much so that it has taken up a spot on my personal top 3 of favorite animeseries. When I first heard about the fact that there would finally be something coming out that would continue the storyline I was delighted. At the same time though I also felt anxious. What if it would suck? Well, having finally been able to see this film now, I am very glad to let you all know that my fears were unfounded. If you are a fan of the animeseries you will love this. Let’s talk about the storyline first. One of the things I really liked about it, is the way it treated the main characters of Asuna and especially Kirito. It was very refreshing to see the latter being out of his element and not the powerhouse player we are used to seeing in the series. Kirito really struggles within this new life and death game, and it takes him a long while to adapt. Asuna also at a certain point becomes very vulnerable, and it’s a side we are not always used to seeing from the starstruck couple. It’s their relationship and love for each other that continues to be heartwarming, and very touching though.

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GET READYYYYYYY: FIGHT!!!!

Another thing I liked about the film’s story is some of the questions it asked that really made you think.What if you were able to forget about things from your past that were not very happy thoughts or events?  Would you do that if you were able to? Or are they a part of your life no matter how unhappy these memories might be? I think that is an intriguing question and one that could almost be the topic for an entire post or at the very least a lively discussion. The movie runs for two hours, and it is in my opinion just a tad bit too long. Some of the story elements felt a bit forced, and a few of the side characters had way too little screentime, but were probably just added to the mix for the fans. Nevertheless there are also quite a few things in it for fans of the original series that will in all likelyhood give you a few goosebumps. On the action front the film doesn’t disappoint. Even though it’s not a full on fight fest, there are enough action scenes in the film that make it very satisfying. The fights also feel much more threatening and dangerous.

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I just love my special edition boxed set version of this movie 😀

 

While the animation might not be as beautiful as some of the higher level animefilms out there, I still found it to be very decent, with some spectacular setpieces. The new outfits for most of the characters also worked quite well and had a really nice look to it. Another thing that plays a big role in this film is the music. With the introduction of the new character of Yuna, an AI idol singer, there were quite a number of scenes that featured her singing. At times it almost felt as if I was watching a new installment of the  Macross saga. But I have to admit that this element did work quite well and wasn’t distracting in the least. The music featured in the film fits the tone of Sword Art Online and as such is very pleasing to the ear. Even though the film can be watched on it’s own without any prior knowledge of the world of Sword Art Online, you will find it more enjoyable if you first watch the original anime. If you hated SOA in the first place, this movie won’t make you love the series all of a sudden. For the fans though this is a more than decent follow up to the original anime and with the words Sword Art Online will return at the end of the credits, we can rest assured that we haven’t seen the last of Kirito and Asuna. And I would not have it any other way. Link start !

I give Sword Art Online-Ordinal Scale a 8 out of 10 score.

The Anthem of the Heart, Japanse (animated) movie (2015)

Let’s talk. Let’s really talk for a bit. The topic? Well how about conversations? No, I am not trying to be funny here, I am really going somewhere with this. We have conversations every day. Unless of course you are stranded on some remote island with no one to talk to (although I hear a volleybal called Wilson could really help you out with that problem). Getting back to the topic of conversations. you have to admit that they make up a very big part of our lives. We talk to our friends, loved ones, parents, customers even total strangers. But now for a tough question. In how many of the conversations you have had were you totally honest? Ahhh…hard to say isn’t it? We all tell lies, and anyone who denies that is, well a big fat liar. But probably not all those lies were intentional. Sometimes you might tell a lie just to spare someones feelings. It’s the conversations where you have said something hurtful that you can’t take back though, that most of us will probably remember the most. A slip of the tongue or an intentional comment with the sole purpose of causing pain, I guess it’s safe to say we have all been there at some point. A moment where you kick yourself for saying something so stupid, or wish you could take it back. It’s the conversations where you don’t even realise that you are causing pain that might be the worst though.

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Hey! You…yeah you! Stop talking this instant!

And this last thing is exactly what happens to the young child Jun Naruse in the animated movie the Anthem of the Heart. Jun has always been a chatterbox. She is very cheerful and is always happily talking about pretty much anything that is on her mind. One day she comes home and tells her mother how she saw her father doing something that to her young childlike mind was pretty awesome. Her mother freezes though, and eventually this innocent remark results in her parents getting a divorce. Even worse her father puts all the blame on her. Jun runs away in tears, and while she tries to work through her grief a fairy egg appears. It makes sure that all of Jun’s words are sealed away so that she can never cause hurt to anyone ever again. Years later we meet up again with Jun when she is in highschool. She is but a shell of her former self. Jun is unable to speak, and tries to stay of the radar in class. But then her teacher, mister Jōshima invites her to become a member of the Charity Committee together with three other classmates. Naturally she is not at all happy about this, especially since it seems that they are going to have to prepare for a musical piece. But just when she is about to quit, something happens that changes her mind. Or beter yet someone. Will Jun find the courage to regain her voice?

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The school ran out of chairs so they had to find an alterative….

Now admit it: you read the synopsis of the film and were thinking something along the lines of ” Wow this sounds incredibly boring”. When I tell you that the runtime of this film is two hours I can almost hear the gears grinding in your head already and crossing this movie of your to watch list. You would miss out on something quite special though. This is one of those films that has a very simple story, but turns into something quite extraordinary. And here’s some of the reasons why (erm, no not going to give you 13 of them I am afraid). For one thing it’s the wonderful characters. Jun herself is hard not to like. Since she is at the center of the films, and this is pretty much her story it’s important to have a lead that you care about it. And you do. Jun’s journey of rediscovery and trying to forgive herself is fascinating to watch. At times you want to kick her, and even hate her for some of the things she does in this film. At the same time though, you can understand what drives her, and how incredibly vulnerable she is. The supporting cast is equally important to the story and just as enjoyable to watch as Jun herself. Why? Because they are really human. All of them are not perfect and have their own insecurities and flaws.

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Yeah I don’t really know what to say to this image. Egghead is the best I could come up with.

I love it when there are characters in a film that are not just there because it’s necessary for them to appear at a certain point, but just have depth and things you can relate to. It’s hard to make a story like this interesting to watch, especially considering the fact that this is a two hour movie that is filled with dialogue and a lot of music. But it succeeds in doing that. The intricate relationships between all of the characters and the way that basically they support each other’s flaws is the heart of what makes this movie work so well. As this is in part a musical as well, you will find sections of the film that are filled with music. But not the typical music that you normally find in anime films. Songs like “Over the Rainbow” and ” Around the World” give this film an extra special touch and just simply work very well, and don’t feel out of place at all. The animation style and level of detail is great too. It’s one of those films that has an almost dreamlike quality to it, and unless you are a very cynical person that doesn’t see beauty in anything, it’s almost impossible to not get touched by it.

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How do you like your eggs in the morning, erm evening?

But that strength is also at the same time it’s weakness. If you are someone who likes their films tense, filled with action and a breakneck pace, then I’m sorry to say that you are not going to be finding that anywhere in this film. What you are going to find though is a movie that has it’s title very well chosen. It will touch your heart and fill you with emotion while at the same time giving you a wonderful feel good feeling. If I were to make a comparison to something that has as a similar feel to Anthem of the Heart it would be Your lie in April. And I don’t think I could hand out a better compliment to this movie than that last one. While I would not call this film a masterpiece or classic, it does come very close. It’s a wonderful film that turns something simple into a very powerful piece of storytelling. It will also make you ask an important question: When is telling the truth something that might not be the best thing to do? I haven’t yet discovered the answer to that one. If you have, be sure to let me know!

I give The Anthem of the Heart a 9 out of 10 score.

Special Features Presents: Animecon 2018, part 2

And welcome back to the second part of my report from this year’s Animecon. If you missed the first part, you can find it again by pressing on the link right here. So, it will probably not come as a huge surprise that since the convention is called Animecon you are able to watch a lot of anime there (No really? That’s astounding! Never would have guessed that!). Okay, let’s quit with the joking and check out what I saw at this year’s con.

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Otaku no Video (1991)

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This was the opening film of Animecon and a classic that I had not yet seen myself. At the time of it’s release it spurred quite a bit of controversy as it portrayed fans (Otakus) as people who were ashamed at themselves for being fans, and included live action excerpts of a documentary. This version though, must have edited these segments out, as I saw not a single one of these. What remained though was a comedy about a young man named Ken Hubo who gets invited by a former friend to a group of anime and manga enthusiasts. Eventually Ken sets out to become the Otaking and take over the entire world making everyone a Otaku. It was a completely over the top and at times quite hilarious anime film. Part of it’s charm was the old school animation style and music, and a lot of older animes like Gunbuster and Macross were also featured in this film. It was an okay film, nothing more, nothing less.

Garo: Vanishing line Episodes 1-5 (2018)

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Ahh, now this was more like it. This was shown late at night and rightfully so, as it was quite brutal and scary, but definitely highly enjoyable. Garo: Vanishing Line takes place in the future where a conspiracy is taking place in a dark city. A man named Sword is trying to get to the bottom of it all, his only clue a word: El Dorado. What I really liked about this anime were the fight sequences. Sword drives around on a big and quite frankly spectacular motorcycle, fighting against all kinds of monsters that some of the citizens are turning into. It also featured quite a bit of fan service, but mostly this served as a kind of comic relief, and luckily did not become the focus of the series like for instance Highschool of the Dead. The first five episodes were shown, and I am definitely going to finish this series soon, as it left me thirsting for more. You can expect a full review for this series somewhere in the future.

Your Name (2017)

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This was the only movie that was shown on all three days of the convention. Most of you that watch anime will probably already have seen this film. It’s been hyped and gotten rave reviews all over…..and that usually let’s warning signs go off in my head. This was for me the first time that I watched it, and I have to honestly admit that it did not live up to the, admittedly, high expectations that I had of it. Does that mean that I did not like the movie? No certainly not. A movie this big though, deserves a proper review and synopsis, and that’s why I am not going to eloborate any further but save it for an upcoming review of this film later this month. I will also watch it a second time before I am going to write it, just to let it sink in better and maybe even change my final verdict for it.

Comic Girls Episodes 1-5 (4) (2018)

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On the last day I had to wait a bit to kill some time, so I decided to give Comic Girls a chance, the first animeseries that was shown on sunday. Well, you know how much I am a fan of comedy series (erm NOT!) and this was a full on comedy, not two ways about it. In Comic Girls we follow a bunch of cute girls as they aspire to become manga designers. Sounds interesting? Well…I have to be honest, this was just not for me. If you love magical girls/comedy series you will probably love this. I did laugh a couple of times but eventually the high pitched voices of the girls and the slapstick antics started grating on my nerves. I made it to four episodes, and with only one more to go I left the theatre not looking back. Sorry Comic Girls, my sincere apologies.

Revolutionary Girl Utena the movie (1999)

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This last movie was a surprise. Not in the sense that it was a surprisingly good film, but more that it was kept secret until the last second, something that they do every year. With this film the convention also came to an end. And wow, talk about your seriously weird animes, this one should probably rank at the top of your list. Apparently (I did some research after seeing this), this movie isn’t supposed to make much sense if you haven’t seen the animeseries it self. Strangely though this is a retelling of the original tale and stands on it’s own. I would be hardpressed to tell you what this film is about. It deals with magical girls, lesbian sexual tension, swordfights and girls that turn into cars for some strange reason. It was very hard to follow it all, and at times it felt like I had taken some kind of weird psychedelic drugs or something like that. Either way, and that’s the even stranger part, I still enjoyed it. Oh well, maybe we all were under some kind of spell when watching this.

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Well, one thing you definitely need when you go to a con is money. Unless you are a sadist and want to torture yourself with looking at all the stuff that you can’t buy. This year’s Animecon just had way too much stuff that was a serious health hazard for my wallet. Needless to say I bough way too much, that’s for sure. I made a slideshow of all the best items, and I am going to let the pictures speak for themselves.

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Yesterday I mentioned something that was for me the highlight of the convention. It wasn’t anime, it also wasn’t a movie, nor was it all the delicious food. No…it was a performance by the band Necronomidol. I discovered this band about a month ago and was both surprised and delighted to hear that they were going to be performing at Animecon. Their music is very hard to describe as it is a mix of dark wave, black metal, hardrock and even small dance influences. The show began about twenty minutes too late, but boy was it worth the wait. The energy they brought to the stage was infectious and they truly managed to urge the crowd to go completely nuts. The set lasted well over an hour, and was incredible and one of the best concerts that I ever attended. They even spoke to the crowd in a few Dutch words, which was absolutely delightful. After this show, even though I already like their music, I became an instant fan, and managed to buy a few nice merchandise items as well (see the picture below). You could even meet the girls in person later on the day, but as there were a few things more I wanted to check out, I declined. (Honestly I probably would have been to shy to say a single word anyway, lol). If you want to find out more about the band, you can find them on Spotify. (I highly recommend listening to the song Skulls in the Stars, which is absolutely amazing).

 

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And with that this year’s report from animecon draws to a close. But what is that ominous note above mean? A call to arms? Are we all going to go to war? Erm no…but I had a crazy idea. How cool would it be if we could all go to Animecon together next year? In 2019 Animecon is going to be held in the city of Rotterdam (yes they are going to change cities), and will start on the 14th of June to close it’s doors on the 16th of June. If any of you ever had plans to visit Holland in the first place and love anime how incredibly awesome would it be if we could all meet up. Hell, I will even buy the first round of bubble tea. Seriously though, it’s a crazy idea, I know, but it would be really cool  if we could somehow realise it. We all talk here every day, and it would be incredible if we could meet up on an event that is this cool and share our love for all things Asian. Well, just a thought. Interested? Let me know in the comments section.

Anyway, that’s it for this post! I had an incredible time at this con, and after all the crap of the past few weeks it was pretty much what I needed. Tomorrow Raistlin0903 is going to be back in business as usual. That means I’m finally going to be performing my normal blogging routine, which means reading your posts, placing comments and of course sharing new reviews about all things geek! Thanks all for reading, and your patience in letting me come back. Have a great day!

Special Features presents: Anime Con 2018, part 1

Hello everyone! I just came back from an exhausting, but incredibly fun, three day weekend extravaganza called Animecon 2018. This annual event took place in the city of The Hague, and is a convention centered around all things Asian. This means there is a lot of anime, manga, workshops, food, games, in short all the good stuff. In order to not make a post that is so long you will get bored by it, I decided to split it up into two different parts, where I will talk about all the things I have seen and done in this fun filled weekend. So, let’s get started!

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Just like last year I stayed at a castle  hotel. It was conveniently about a 3 minute walk from the convention itself. Which means that after buying some loot (more on that in part 2) you could drop it off at your hotelroom and get ready for buying more loot….erm, yes, moving on. As you can see from the pictures below, the hotel was pretty luxurious and a nice way to spent some time resting after running around all day at the con. Especially as my room had a very nice view. They also provided a terrificic breakfast in the morning with enough food on offer to cater to everyone’s needs.

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Now that we are on the subject of food, let’s talk about that for a bit. Oh, and you will get hungry after this, so you have been warned. What is a convention without food? No idea really, but there was certainly plenty to eat and drink here, and everything was just absolutely delicious. I ate a lot of cup ramen in all kinds of flavors, all of them very tasty. But the highlight certainly was the Japanese version of a Dutch dish called “poffertjes” (hey I never said or language was easy). Best way to describe poffertjes is a kind of mini pancakes, that are very sweet. However this variant was totally different and more of a salty snack. I also very much enjoyed the melon bubble tea which tasted soooo good, as well as the Japanese Crepes and Dango. All in all there was so much food there, that you had to be careful not to spend all your money on all these mouthwatering dishes.

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One of the floors of the convention was turned into a true video arcade. But instead of paying for these games like you normally would, you could play them all for free. With classics like Time Crisis, Monkey Ball and Tetris to name but a few, you could relive the golden age of videogames. Besides the arcade machines, you could also play games on a great variety of different consoles with both modern games as well as golden oldies, enough to satisfy your gaming addiction. If you would like to play oldschool, you could also spent time playing an amount of boardgames at the boardgamenights (which I didn’t attend myself). Many games were anime oriented, like the Attack on Titan Deckbuilding Game, but you could also play classic Asian boardgames like Go. I did play one round of Go, but as it was my first time playing that game (yeah I like to make up excuses) I lost miserably (but still had fun playing it anyway).

 

 

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Just like last year, besides anime there were also a great number of Asian movies to be seen. I ended up seeing two of them, back to back and both were very much worth it.

Going the Distance (Japan, 2016)

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Going the distance is a movie about friendship and how much you would give to maintain that friendship. Asahi is a boxing trainer in Tokyo who is about to get married to the girl of his dreams Kaori. When his childhood friend Hiroto shows up asking him for help, he is torn between his soon to be wife and his friend. Time is running out for Kaori as she wants to get married before her ailing grandmother who suffers from dementia, forgets who she is. Things soon spiral out of control though, and Asahi finds himself in increasingly more trouble. This drama was very unique in the way that there was absolutely no music that accompanied it. It was an immensely beautiful film, that once again proves how precious true friendship really is, as well as the hard fact that you can’t always get what you want in life.

Her love boils bathwater (Japan 2016)

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This beautiful and heartwarming drama was sent in for a contender as the best
foreign language film at the Oscars of 2017. Sadly it did not make the cut and one has to wonder why. The film tells the story of the woman Futuba who has just been diagnosed with cancer and hears she only has a few more months left to live. Instead of giving up, she is determined to finish a few things before she dies. One is finding back her missing husband and get him to resume the family bath house. Another no less important thing is getting her daughter Azumi, who is being bullied at school, to stand up for herself. With time running out, will she be able to accomplish these and other goals? A movie like this could become an enormous tearjerker. While I won’t deny that you won’t shed a few tears it is mainly a film that fills you with hope and an incredible feel good feeling. I was especially astonished by the high level of acting in this movie. In particular by lead actresses Rie Miyazawa who plays the terminally ill Futuba and Hana Sugisaki who played her daughter Azumi. Both were absolutely amazing in their admittedly very difficult roles. This was a powerful film that stayed in my head long after I finished it.

Well, that’s it for part one. Tomorrow I will bring you part 2, which will feature the anime that I watched, as well as all the stuff that I bought. And, last but not least I will also tell you what was the highlight of the convention for me, and suprisingly that wasn’t any anime or a movie. But more on that tomorrow, as I have to keep some suspense up right? Thank you all for reading, and now I am going to try and make up for some lost sleep lol!

And……I am off…..again!

No, please don’t panic. I’m not announcing a new blogging hiatus. I just came back, and I definitely plan on staying around. So what’s this all about then?? Tomorrow I am taking the train to visit Animecon 2018, a three day convention that focusses on all things Asian, Anime, Manga and loads of other stuff. Besides all those things there is also plenty of nice  food to eat and the hotel I am staying at is certainly also not something that I would soon forget either. Just like last year I plan on writing a post on all my (mis) adventures on the con when I get back. But as I will be busy the upcoming three days with that, I will not be around on WordPress so my apologies in advance for missing out on all your posts. This first week after my blogging hiatus has been an absolute joy, and I want to thank all of you for making me feel so welcome after my abscence. You are all awesome in case you did not already know that yet. As you might have noticed I haven’t been up to my full active self yet, but next week, after I return from the con, I will be back in full swing (in other words: there will be more posts, and more comments from me) Well, that’s it for now. I will talk to you when I get back. I hope you will all have a wonderful and relaxing weekend, bye for now!

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My Hero Academia Season 1, Anime tv series (2016)

Yes people I am back, here to kick things off with the first of the requested reviews for the anime theme month My Hero Academia. I did not expect to become totally addicted to this series. In fact I got addicted to this series so much that I immediately went on an impulse shopping spree buying the first season limited edition dvd boxed set, as well as the first issue of the manga. Well, hey I never denied the fact when I fall I completely in love with something I can do crazy things. Right…but where are my manners. Let’s first shed some light on the two bloggers that requested this review in the first place (yes, in a strange turn of events the random numbers generator selected this anime twice in a row, go figure).

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Really? Two times? I find that very hard to believe.

Jiraiyan’s blog Otaku Orbit has been a blog that I have been following for quite a long time now. It is a very diverse blog that focusses on both anime and manga. As I am pretty much a noob when it comes to manga (well, yeah I can hear you saying it: “you are a noob at anime as well” So for sake of argument I won’t dispute that :)), I found it to be a rather helpful blog at discovering manga titles that are worth reading (Now if I could only find some time to read them, that would be awesome).

The second request for this anime came from Merlin. Another truly diverse blog that will satisfy all your geeky needs it features an astounding amount of topics ranging from books, anime, movies and television series to name but a few things. All of the posts are top notch and just as the blog mentioned above it is run by a very friendly host. If you have yet to discover these blogs, go do that now. This post can wait…no really, do that first. And ofcourse hit the subscribe button too if you are not a follower of either of them. Right…all done? Okay then. Let’s put on our superhero costumes and dive into the world of My Hero Academia.

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Okay, I’m ready to start taking some notes now. Doubt this post will be interesting though….

Unless you have been living under a rock (well I have to admit I did, as I was very late to discover this anime gem), you must have at least heard of this show. But helpful as I am let me break the storyline down for you in case you have yet to see this. No worries as always, I will do this spoiler free. In the world of My Hero Academia 80% of the population has manifested some form of superpowers. Let’s let that sink in for a minute. Imagine living in a world like that, and you yourself don’t have any of these powers that are called quirks. It’s the nightmare that young Izuku Midoriya has to live with though. Even while he is ridiculed by his classmates for having dreams of one day becoming a superhero despite his lack of powers, Izuku refuses to give up. One fateful day his highschool bully Katsuki is attacked by a villain and Izuku is the one that tries to rescue him. Just when things start to get grim, his childhood hero All Might, the world’s mightiest hero shows up and intervenes just in time to save both Izuku and Katsuki. All Might is very impressed by Midoriya’s courage and in the end decides to bestow upon him a very special gift. A gift that will change Izuku’s life forever and allows him to enter the prestigious U.A. High School, a special school that trains the next generation of superheroes. Izuku is about to find out though that the life of a superhero isn’t that easy…..

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Hmm, that guy on the left truly gives a whole new meaning to the word handjob.

Now I know there must be a few of you that after having read the synopsis above are probably thinking: do we really need another superhero show? In a world that is currently being dominated by superhero movies there are quite a number of people that are experiencing the so called “superhero fatique syndrom”. And honestly I don’t blame them. But let me try to convince you though that it is in your best interest to really check out this show. Nothing could have prepared me for the addictive nature of this series. After watching just one episode I was hooked. This series has a way of drawing you in, and never letting you go. So what is it about this anime that sets it apart from your usual superhero stuff? Well, let’s start with the characters. You are going to love them. The cast is huge, but never seems to overwhelm you in any way. It gradually introduces new characters in every episode, and pretty much all of them are awesome in their own way. The anime’s lead character Izuki is almost impossible to dislike. I think we can all identify with someone that has dreams, and tries to realise them, without ever giving up, even though it might at times seem like a lost cause. All Might, the world’s mightiest hero, is just amazing. He has a vulnerability in him that you will grow to love, when you find out more about him.

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Yes we look weird, what’s it to you?

Now I could go on and describe even more of the cast, but I will leave that for you to discover. Suffice it to say though that these characters are the main drive of this anime. That and the relationships between them. This show has a heart to it that comes to the fore in the bonds that are established between these wanna be heroes. While it might seem cool to have a superpower, it certainly has it’s downsides as well. This first season lays the foundation for the world of My Hero Academia. When it ends, you can almost feel that there are even greater things to come. Which brings me to another selling point and that is the storyline. While most superhero shows focus on the heroes banding together to fight a common foe, this isn’t the case in this anime. Yes ofcourse there is a threat and there are some very cool fight sequences between heroes and villains, but at it’s heart this is a show that has much more to it than that. You will have moments where you will laugh out loud, and then there are also moments that are very touching and downright scary and exciting as well. I love it when a show combines all these different kinds of elements and succeeds in blending it into a wonderful and very potent cocktail.

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Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No it’s….naw…not going to head into that territory….

My Hero Academia is a series that I can’t recommend enough. If I haven’t managed to succeed in convincing you that this series really does try to do something else with the superhero genre, just give the first episode a shot. If that episode doesn’t hook you in, then chances are that the rest of the series won’t either. But I doubt that will happen though. This anime is a gem, and I honestly can’t wait to get started on season 2 which I hope to be doing somewhere in the upcoming weeks. With a cast of loveable and quirky characters (yes…pun intended), a truly unique and wonderful storyline and some great action sequences added to the mix, this anime has very little not to like. In fact after having thought about it for a while I can’t think of any things that I did not like about this series. And thus we have reached the end of the first post for the anime theme month. Next up is Baccano! another anime that I have heard a lot about but haven’t seen yet. For now though, keep your dreams alive: Plus Ultra!!

I give My Hero Accademia Season 1 a 9 out of 10 score.

 

The 0903: Birthday Party, Competion Results & Blog Update

Let me start this post with a small apology on my part. As you know I announced a Short Blogging Hiatus, that I thought would only last for one week. But, unfortunately I won’t be back this week either, which means it is taking a bit longer than expected. But….it is my birthday today, and you know what I promised you when I announced the competition. Today, finally after a long wait, you can find the winners in each category below. Because really what better way is there to celebrate a birthday by giving away some presents! Congratulation to each winner! If you didn’t win, please don’t despair. There will be another competion somewhere in the future, so don’t give up. For everyone that entered, thank you for participating and for all the support that you have shown my blog. It is very much appreciated.

The Winners:

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There were 16 people that entered in this category. In the end it was J (yes that really is one letter, no typo on my part) that got selected by the random numbers generator and won the coveted Mikasa Figure. Congratulations J!

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The Book Category proved to be the most popular. I guess a lot of people were eager to find out who Raistlin is. But there can only be one winner and that is Biblionyan! Congratulations to you as well!

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It was the movie category that ultimately proved to be the least popular (which is strange as I absolutely love that Back to the Future book), with only 12 people entering it. In this final category the random number generator selected Karandi to take home the prize! Congratulations!

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A note to the three winners…

Well now the only thing left is for me to sent the prizes to you. And ofcourse I have to know your address for that so please sent an email to the following email address: mvanderweide28@gmail.com (you can also use the contact form on my about page) listing your address, or where I can sent the prize too. As soon as I have received your email I will head to the post office to start shipping your prizes.

Blog update: I’ll be back!

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Now, finally how about that blog hiatus huh? I know I said I would only be off for one week, but sometimes things grow a bit beyond your control. It has been crazy busy at my work these past few days, but to top things off, I also had a nasty flu bug that pretty much took most of my energy. In short: I just could not find the time or the proper spirit to write/read posts when I came home and provide you with my usual comments/blog posts. If all goes well though, I will be back again on tuesday. I have a backlog of comments I will first respond to, so I will be spending most of tuesday doing that. But after that I will slowly get back to reading your posts and provide my customary comments again (lol). Of course there will also be new posts from me as well, and to start things off I will provide my first review for the Anime theme month My Hero Accademia, Season 1. (Oh, just so you know…I have become totally addicted to that anime, so by saying this I think you pretty much already know how I feel about that one).

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hmmmmm…..somehow I don’t believe you…….

So, again my apologies for being absent for a while. Next week I will be back, yes this time for real! Now I am off to celebrate me becoming 42 (hmm…is that something I should celebrate though? I wonder 🤔). Have a great weekend everyone, and see you all next week!

 

March Theme: Anime

Yes people, it’s a new month, and it promises to be a very good one at that. There are lots of exciting things that are going to be happening in March. First off, I am absolutely delighted to have the theme for March be anime. Ever since I started blogging, I rediscovered my love for this fantastic medium. But I have to give credit to this by naming one of the most inspiring anime bloggers out there, the wonderful Karandi . I had not watched anime for about 7-8 years before I started my blog. In the early days of my “blogging career” I ran across Karandi’s blog purely by chance and needless to say I absolutely loved it. Because of her I began watching anime again, and now, just like blogging it really has become quite a big part of my life. Just like I did for last month’s theme I asked for your help in what I should review, and you can find the results below. Another thing that will be happening this month is the results of the competition. I know you are looking forward to seeing if you might be one of the winners. Well only 8 more days, and the final results will be revealed…and of course that coincides together with my birthday. Lastly I hope there will be two collab posts coming out as well in this month, but I am not going to reveal any details for that just yet. Gotta keep some secrets right??

My Hero Academia

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Well, before I get into who the two bloggers are that won for My Hero Academia (yes there were two) I want to say another thank you to Stilzel, who has made it possible for me to finally be able to see this anime (I can’t provide a link to a blog, because as far as I know Stilzel isn’t on WordPress (yet), but you can find them on Twitter at @_Stilzel).

Now My Hero Acedemia is a very, very popular anime about a society where 80% of the population has superhero powers. Imagine that! Just like last month I used the random numbers generator to select which reviews I would be taking on, and the funny thing is that this one got selected twice in a row, but with two different bloggers that asked for it, one being Jiraiyan and the other Merlin . As I did want to take on two different animes, I decided to just give both bloggers a shout out for this one when I write the final review, and went on to select a third number.

Baccano!

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The second anime that was chosen by the random numbers generator was requested by Adam and is called Baccano! Weirdly enough this anime was on Netflix and today has all of a sudden disappeared. But I have found another way to watch it anyway, so no worries. Baccano! sounds like a deliciously weird and interesting show, that involves fantasy elements, outlaws and gangsters, and seemingly takes place over several decades.

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Well, that’s it! Don’t like anime? No worries, I have still got you covered. There are going to be some movie reviews, as well as another Korean drama that I am currently watching and am very excited for. So there is still other stuff heading your way this month as well. As mentioned, I am currently on a short blogging hiatus, but I had already finished this post and it was scheduled to go out today. Rest assured though, next week I will be back in full swing, and respond to all the comments you left for me (You already have my thanks for all the kind words and support). I hope all of you are doing well, and look forward to talking with you again next week. Bye for now!