Hyouka Part Two – Review

Today I’ve got my review of Hyouka’s second half, which unsurprisingly turned out to be just as strong on this viewing as any of the others. Hyouka is just a ridiculously good show in every single capacity, maintaining a level of richness and beauty throughout that is simply staggering. It is remarkable that this show exists at all.

You can check out my full review over at ANN.

My Hero Academia, Season Two – Review

Today on ANN, I reviewed the second season of the always satisfying My Hero Academia! As I often mentioned while the season was actually running, it was a great relief to see My Hero Academia’s sequel pick up the pace of adaptation, and give the original’s arcs precisely the amount of screen time they needed. The adaptation even improved over the original at times, making it an altogether excellent take on a very good manga. BRING ON SEASON THREE!

You can check out my full review over at ANN.

A Bride’s Story, Volume 9 – Review

Today on ANN, I returned to A Bride’s Story for its ninth and most Pariyatastic volume yet. Pariya is an insanely good character, and this volume was happy to just let her combination of bluntness, anxiety, and general charm carry the show. Her relationship with Umar is progressing in an endearing and believable way, and getting stuck in her headspace offered a much more immediately relatable series of challenges than Bride’s Story’s sometimes fanciful narratives. After many volumes of reserved historical drama, A Bride’s Story has finally embraced its meme-ready 4koma heart.

You can check out my full review over at ANN.

Made in Abyss – Review

Today I’ve got a review of last season’s phenomenal Made in Abyss! Made in Abyss was a special show from start to finish, executing on its intriguing premise with visual and sonic aplomb. It feels inherently risky to construct a show that so completely lives or dies on how well it sells its environment, but Made in Abyss managed to conquer that challenge through its all-around terrific aesthetic execution. The story was also no slouch, offering the viewer continuous intriguing hooks as Rico and Reg conducted their descent. I hope we get a second season of Made in Abyss, and also hope it can somehow maintain this season’s best-in-class execution.

You can check out my full review over at ANN.

Three Leaves, Three Colors – Review

Today I’ve got a review of one the past few years’ more unassuming slice of lifes, a show that likely flew under the radar for non-Dogakobo stalwarts. Three Leaves, Three Colors wasn’t the greatest show ever, but it was pleasant enough, and I enjoyed my time with it. As I’ve said, one of my favorite things about reviewing anime is I feel less guilty about these random comfort watches – I can enjoy a modest show to its fullest, knowing I’m actually spending my time well. As someone who’s beset with all sorts of anxieties, it’s a very nice feeling!

You can check out my full review over at ANN.

Hyouka, Part One – Review

Today I’ve got a review of the first long-awaited Hyouka release! After far too many years in limbo, this straight-up masterpiece is finally getting released over here, and I was happy to revisit it. Hyouka is an experience that feels richer every time, full of great details and suffused with a strong atmosphere that completely transports you to its world. I hope my words do it some justice!

You can check out my full review over at ANN.

Platinum End, Volume 2 – Review

Platinum End starts to find its rhythm in its second volume, with the interplay of angelic powers offering a reasonable platform for Ohba’s standard thriller shenanigans. This volume also formally introduces the story’s main love interest, who is… well, she’s the same demure girl Ohba framed as the ultimate object of adoration in Bakuman, so I guess there’s no surprises there. Platinum End continues to work as a trashy but consistently entertaining page-turner, even if Ohba’s fundamental Ohbaness can sometimes be a bit much.

You can check out my full review over at ANN.

The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya – Review

After weathering a rewatch of the very inconsistent Haruhi Suzumiya TV series, it was wonderful to learn that Disappearance was actually even better than I remembered. Takemoto is a terrific director, and Disappearance is easily one of the most compelling stories in the franchise so far. I had a whole bunch to say about this film’s visual storytelling, and watching it just made me even more eager to get to High Speed. Haruhi Suzumiya may not be as great a franchise as I remembered, but Disappearance is a tremendous sendoff to one of the 00s’ stranger phenomenons.

You can check out my full review over at ANN.

Dimension W – Review

It seems like a lot of people really, really wanted Dimension W to be a great show. It had every promotional advantage you could hope for, and it inhabited an extremely fan-friendly genre space, but the show just didn’t have the strength to follow through. Today I’ve got a sturdy review of this unfortunate anime stepchild. I hope you enjoy it!

You can check out my full review over at ANN, or my episode notes below.

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Sound! Euphonium – Novel Review

Today I’ve got some thoughts on the first Sound! Euphonium novel! They are not happy thoughts, unfortunately. Although the original novel does give us a closer look into Kumiko’s head, that’s pretty much all I can say for it – the prose is pedestrian, the narrative is actually far less tightly composed than the anime, and the cast feels less well-defined here than they do in the adaptation. This is a readable book, but definitely not one I’d recommend. Nice work polishing this into a diamond, KyoAni!

You can check out my full review over at ANN.