A series I missed out on in my summer preview post is Thunderbolt Fantasy. While I was pretty much on board for it after hearing Urobuchi Gen, aka. the Butcher, actually thought of its concept and wrote its story, it went completely under my radar at the time as I cleanly forgot about it. Nevertheless, as somewhat of a mix between old-style Chinese wuxia flicks and Japanese anime-plot ideas, I have been rather entertained by it thus far.
You might be wondering what brought this on all of a sudden. I have been feeling for some time that doing the usual posts for previews of seasons and the like is mere boring stuff and can be found almost anywhere, and thus, I should write content that people would be interested in reading aside from the commonly penned stuff. Editorials like these are, hopefully, what might yet interest more people to think a little more deeply about the shows and series they watch. Needless to say, this post contains spoilers for the series if you have not watched it.
Summer has come upon us, and for many, the heat this year may be at its hottest yet. Whether or not the same can be said for the anime season however, remains to be seen. At the very least, have a Summer Ayase Eli from Love Live! above, done by 6U, as the starter image to this post as we preview the choices for the summer season.
And, at last, we have the mid-season impressions of the season! First however, I must point your attention to the Kumamoto earthquakes that have devastated the island of Kyuushuu in southern Japan. I can only help in my very small way to pray for them and ask that others pray or even send help to them, even if it is a very small gesture. They need all the support and help they can get.
Spring has come unto us once more with such speed that it is difficult to believe we are here once more. And yet here we are, clinging on to possible mementos of spring, whether they be physical objects, or intangible memories. Traditionally, spring has always been the best season of the year, but lately it has been difficult to uphold that particular ideal for me. Still, that is not to say that I give spring anime series more chances than other seasons’, and so here we go with this year’s offerings of possible spring mementos.
And after an extremely long break of not doing this due to life, games, and other reasons, I guess it is time I bring back some of my impressions in order to let you know how things stand for the season. This season has certainly been more of a surprise with regards to the quality of the series with respect to what I was expecting, so it has been pretty good so far. Read on to find out how each series stands after the usual 3-episode test.
The new year is upon us, and with it brings the traditional end of the last season of anime. However, going by usual standards, I suppose winter is the first anime season of the year for most. Once again, the conventional thoughts surrounding winter anime seasons apply, in the sense that it usually has fewer shoes for people to watch, both in total and among the chosen. Will it be so once again this year?
Time flies, and yet another of the four seasons is upon us. Fall has been, for me at least, traditionally much of a season in between two slow ones. Spring has always been the strongest anime season, while summer and winter seem to have the least number of shows I watch in any given season throughout a year. Autumn falls somewhere in between both, but as the years move on, it seems, too, to fall behind like its namesake.
“It’s summer! Let’s go!” by Mauve. You can find the original piece here.
Summer is upon us, and the heat could not be any less of an indicator for many, I should presume. At the very least, the heat where I am is torturing many. Perhaps because of the heat associated with summer, and the fact that summer vacation is one of the longer school holidays in Japan, the summer anime season is usually the least anticipated season. Nevertheless, gems have appeared in previous summer anime seasons, and perhaps, this one might have one too for some, most, or even all of you.
The Subway brand has always been pretty forward looking with their marketing, having supported fashion shows, concerts and independent film makers. That’s why we weren’t surprised, and were even a little impressed when Subway Singapore decided to work the pop-culture angle.
Apart from releasing a hilarious TVC featuring their latest tuna bacon melt, the company also called upon fans to partake of an online contest to win tickets to The Avengers: Age of Ultron. Cosplayers were also invited to attend the screening in costume (kudos to the good folks at Here Be Geeks for making this happen), and all in all, this made for a pretty interesting evening.
Superfans and cosplayers mingling at the event area just before the screening.
We spotted some of our awesome cosplay friends. Sadly, Ultron didn’t put in an appearance. 🙁
As for the movie proper, we’re going to give you the lowdown and hopefully keep it as spoiler-free as possible.
The Avengers: Age of Ultron is the sequel to 2012’s big hit, and picks up following the dissolution of S.H.I.E.L.D. Tired of all the fighting and hoping to create a lasting peace, Iron Man Tony Stark decides to mess with powers beyond his ken and this leads to the creation Ultron, a sentient peace-keeping software.
The program soon runs-amok, and the team comprising Black Widow, Captain America, Hawkeye, Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk and Thor have to band together to stop him. Along the way they encounter Pietro and Wanda Maximoff (Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch), and in true comic book fashion, the good guys eventually win but at great cost.
Needless to say, the movie is formulaic. It fits the mould of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe (MCU) movies to a T and is laden with action, top-notch CGI and special effects (we especially loved the Hulkbuster moments). Hardcore comic book fans might notice that Ultron’s origin story deviates from the original, but that’s something I’d forgive considering everything else.
For an ensemble movie with such a large cast, Joss Whedon does a brilliant job of telling the story. The pacing, even if it’s a little forced at times, also kind of worked in his favor.
The film opens in-media-res with a massive raid on a Hydra base in Sokovia, and the action doesn’t really let up. That’s why I’m especially glad for the small pockets of peace and contemplation that take place between the fighting and explosions.
These scenes give more emphasis to characters like Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye (whom I’d like to call the most death-flagged character in MCU history), and helped develop the burgeoning romance between Bruce Banner and Natasha Romanov.
Fans of course can also expect easter eggs galore, and more than a few tie-ins to happenings in other franchises (such as Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D). There was plenty of foreshadowing as well, and we know for a fact that The Avengers are all set for The Infinity War when it releases in 2018.
Spring is upon us, and along with the sakura in bloom comes another new anime season. Admittedly, this post is already a little late as several days of the new season has already passed, but hey, better late then never, non?
That being said, I find myself watching less and less anime each new season. Perhaps the biggest reason may be that I am just losing interest in all of the same stereotypical shows with similar plots and character types. Nevertheless, that is not to say that I am not without my picks, and so, here they are.