Tag Archives: ANIME

‘POKÉMON: THE ORIGIN’ ANIME SPECIAL

I remember when I had to constantly try to correct people that the main character in Pokemon Red and Blue wasn’t Ash, but actually ‘Red’. Some guys at the Pokemon Company probably had the same problem as well, so now there’s a new special on the way that’ll shut people up… AND NO, THAT ISN’T GARY OAK IN THAT TRAILER.
From Serebii.net

During the Pokémon Game Show, it was announced that a brand new anime special will run to coincide with Pokémon XY. This anime is called Pokémon: The Origin, features Red & Green, is based directly on the games, and is to air on October 2nd as a special broadcast. The show features Red as he starts his journey and battles his rival Green, and the Gym Leader Brock.
Source:
http://www.serebii.net/index2.shtml

SPRING SEASON ANIME IMPRESSIONS: AKU NO HANA

Yeesh! That’s all I could say after watching the first two episodes. Before anything, I have to talk about the animation style used in this anime adaptation based on the manga. Lurking the web I can tell that several fans of the manga are totally against the rotoscope animation utilized in this psychological and angst driven story. Actually I don’t think it’s the rotoscoping that’s the problem but actually the execution of it. Movies like Heavy Metal or Fire and Ice used rotoscoping beautifully, the attention to detail of each frame being carefully drawn out mimicking the exact performance of the live action actor. In Aku no Hana the animation quality seems a bit lack luster with a lot of skipped frames which sorta looks more like an amateur art school project. But I feel like it’s animated this way for a reason. The atmosphere of the anime that gives off a very off setting vibe mixed with these visuals that just make you feel uncomfortable was what the studio intended. Not only do the characters experience a form of disconnect from the life they live in but we the audience get to experience that first hand with both the animation and the overall creepiness one gets from watching this.

Alrighty then it’s plot stuff time! Aku no Hana is a doozy of story, it follows the life of Takao Kasuga. He’s somewhat of a bookworm spending a lot of his middle school life reading books in class. He doesn’t read typical middle schooler books but rather reads literature based on the Symbolist movement, particularly Charles Baudelaire and his book Les fleur du mal(The Flowers of Evil) which is where the story got its name from. Now I’m not big into literature nor am I familiar with the Symbolist movement, but the gist of both stories is that they try to embrace the dark side of humanity. This isn’t however some kiddy Tim Burton-esque interpretation of dark themes but rather just a blatant demonstration of the darkness that resides in all of us. Moving back to the plot, Takao being heavily influenced by the decadent works Baudelaire, he is placed in a usually comical situation. He stumbles upon his crush’s P.E. uniform one day after school while he was alone looking for something he left in their classroom. Since every story needs a conflict,a starting point and a relevant motive to the plot to instigate such behavior Takao ends up taking home the uniform. Mentioned earlier, these types of situations in anime are usually comical in nature but this story takes a more dark approach to a somewhat juvenile mistake. So not only is he conflicted with taking the uniform but he also gets caught by one his classmates, the strange Sawa Nakamura. To put it bluntly she’s an anarchist. She hates authority and doesn’t mind blackmailing Takao into doing her bidding. So far that’s all that has happened, Takao gets caught by Nakamura and then the two of them form a contract. And if you’re a fan of a particular anime, you would know that forming a contract with someone is usually a bad idea.

*SPOILER ALERT* 

Well to wrap things up, I’ll just tell you all what happens at the end of the 2nd episode. So after forming a contract together, Nakamura orders Takao to meet her after school in the school library. The conversation before hand was that Nakamura was going to help Takao apologize to his crush Nanako Saeki for taking her uniform, you know in order to clear up his conscience or something. So what ends up happening, not only does Nakamura and Takao show up but so does Saeki. Apparently Nakamura went and told Saeki that Takao had something to say to her. Just like a deer in headlights Takao freezes up and is unable to speak. To make him feel more uncomfortable, Nakamura ends up shoving him towards Saeki where he ends up bumping his head into her chest. The episode ends with Saeki walking away in shame.

*SPOILER END*

The story builds up really slowly and in retrospect is uneventful at the start. But after reading the manga immediately after watching the first two episodes, I gotta tell yah, you’re in for quite a clusterfuck of things to come. Mentioned earlier I talked about the creepy atmosphere evident in each episode, the creepiness factor is amplified at the end of each episode thanks to the ending theme.

On a side note:

What is the darkest themed anime you’ve ever encountered? I know there are a lot of anime that sensationalize themes like gore and the like. I’ve yet to encounter an anime that goes into the depths human psyche in a very human way. Most of them approach it metaphorically but here in Aku no Hana its more of a first hand approach. ’til next time my few readers.

ANIME EXPO 2013 WITH TED DAY 0-1

Well being the only person on the NUR team on the west coast, I had to do this massive Con solo once again. Although there was much to see, the highlight for me were just the awesome cosplayers. So I’ll just do a photo blog of the characters I saw. Starting off I give you the world famous Filipina cosplayer Alodia Gosiengfiao.

The convention didn’t start till today, but since I was smart enough to order my badge online I came in on Pre-reg day to get my tickets ahead of time. There were a few cosplayers (which didn’t make any sense since it was just for badge pickup) but I was surprised to see host of Culture Japan also known as tokyostormtrooper on youtube, Danny Choo. Oh and the last picture there, a fan wanted a picture with him so he just made a pimp decision and rode that car. Fully functional too mind you. Oh check him out here.

American anime company Sentai Fimworks put out all the stops with their ad space, with a freakin’ tank! As you may recognize, it’s the tank from Girls und Panzer. If you wanna check out more of Sentai’s catalog well you know the drill.

So my morning started pretty slow. There were delays in opening the exhibit hall and the ugliest Sweettooth(Twisted Metal, the new one) cosplay I’ve ever seen ( he was also shirtless and twice as big as me) almost ruined my day. Then I encountered several funny and awesome Attack on Titan cosplayers cosplaying as Wall Maria. There were a lot of walls like a lot. At least these two put some effort in and that second guy had an awesome mask to go with it.

Speaking of Attack on Titan, there were so many people there who actually took the time to be as legit as possible with their AoT soldier cosplays. Although none of their “3D Manuever Gears” were anything close to this, gotta give these people props for looking real spiffy. For those of you not in the know, The first pic is of Mikasa Ackerman and the 3 guys below are just cannon(Titan) fodder. What? Everyone knows that if a character doesn’t have a name he gon’ die son!

Like Dethklok aka the virtual band from Adult Swim’s Metalocalypse? Well here’s the Japanese/Anime versio: Detroit Metal City. Guy on the far left is frontman Johannes Krauser II alter ego of series protagonist Soichi Negishi. In his fake backstory, apparently he is so vile that he killed then raped his parents then raped Satan when he met him. So Satan kicked him out of Hell and now he’s a big wig Death Metal star in Japan. He’s so evil and powerful he impregnated Tokyo Tower. Trust me the anime is as ridiculous and hilarious as it sounds. The theme song is pretty badass actually. I am a terrorist straight outta Hell!

Magi: Labyrinth of Magic fans were also abundant. There so many tiny girls cosplaying as Aladdin. Found the best of the bunch doh and he had company ala Kougyoku Ren. Diggin’ Aladdin’s wand…..That didn’t come out right….

Possibly the only decent looking Bayonetta cosplay I saw today. Nice touch on the wig and all but can’t anyone cosplay her in mid-magic attack form? What? Indecent exposure you say? Thanks Obama.

Making my onto the Manga Lounge, I was entranced by hearing the Princess of Hyrule, Zelda herself playing her sweet somber lullaby on her violin. Too bad she has to peddle for money. I mean if you think about it, her kingdom can’t even afford to send an army to get her every time she gets captured.

Here we have a co-worker of the diligent Mgronald’s employee and the Dark Lord of Entei Isla Mao Sadao of Hataraku Mao-sama. I thought it was company policy to for employees to be clean shaven?

Speaking of Dark Lord’s and demons, we got the Earth King Amaimon from Blue Exorcist. Originally he wanted to pose with the lollipop in his mouth, but then I heard him talking with his group of friends and to his surprise there was a hair on it. The kicker was that his friend said “looks pube-y.”

All of that before led up to this. Delayed for about 30 minutes, when they finally cut the red ribbon that crowd stampeded their way into that exhibition hall. Unfortunately I didn’t get to take pictures of the people in the exhibit hall. Mainly because I ended up learning how to play Cardfight! Vanguard and Weiß Schwarz by collective card game company Bushiroad. Personally those card games have really weird rules that make Magic The Gathering look like Yugioh. Then I got corrected by a real MTG player and I quote “If you ever took up law, then that’s basically MTG.”


These are just a bunch of people I found while scoping out the booths of the several American anime companies bringing anime here in the ol’ Red, White n’ Blue (Happy July 4th PST). First off we got The Blue Spirit from Avatar: The Last Airbender. Next we got the Eva-01 unit from Evangelion, that suit/cosplay was awesome. He made it so that whenever he talks the mouth of his mask moves and he had a built in speaker system. Following that up we have the plethora of Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic cosplayers piling up for a contest. And lastly we have Megumi Han a voice actress with a legacy and by that I mean she’s the daughter of Keiko Han. Keiko-san is most known for playing Luna and Queen Berryl of the original Sailor Moon anime. Megumi-tan on the other hand just recently got into the biz and has paved her way into the anime scene. Her most recent credits are as follows: Sumire Hanano of Chihayafuru 2Akko Kagari  from anime studio Trigger’s short film Little Witch Academia, Cheerilee of the Japanese dub of My Little Pony and her main role as Gon Freecss in the Hunter x Hunter  remake.

Nearing sunset and getting tired I decided it was about time to leave. I had lotso fun sweating my ass off exploring the gigantic convention center right in the heart of downtown LA and taking pictures of cosplayers that I found to be cool. On my way out to the exit I met a guy who just keep yelling “Praise the Sun!” over and over again. On my way to the parking structure outside, I bumped into 2 good bestfriends Kakashi and Tobi. When I finally got outside, I saw the Eva-01 unit again. Looked like it “over heated” because after that shot he just burst out of that thing like a cake.

To end this long ass photo blog, I give you my cosplay pick of the day: Chi from Chobits. Her friend Fionna from Adventure Time was pretty cute too. That’s all I got for now, stay tuned.