Your Lie in April – Review

The reviews keep coming! This time it’s KimiUso’s turn, a show so damn pretty that I really wish it were just slightly better constructed. This was one of my shorter reviews, but I got through what I wanted to say – I’m sure plenty of other people can talk about which specific characters could have used more texture, or which episodes exactly could have been excised to fix the pacing overall. I was going for tone here, and I’m pretty happy with the result.

You can check out my full review over at ANN!


Winter 2015 – Week 11 in Review

Oh what’s this another stellar week in anime jeez tell me something I don’t know. All the best shows feel like they’re not even competing with each other anymore – they’re competing for placement on the end-of-year list. In contrast to last year, where I struggled to think of more than seven shows I’d be happy recommending, here we’ve almost got half a list already filled out. Shirobako is a legend, Death Parade is uneven but has staggering highs, Maria is consistently excellent and brimming with great characters, and Yuri Kuma Arashi is a little emotionally lacking but full of ideas and beauty. We also had a great finale for KimiUso and strong episodes for both Log Horizon and JoJo. What the hell is up with this season.

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Winter 2015 – Week 10 in Review

A strong week in anime this time, with few surprises but plenty of impressive episodes. Some shows have been jostling in position recently, with KimiUso in particular making a major stab at a recovery, but things have mostly settled – Shirobako, Maria, Death Parade, and Yuri Kuma are consistently strong, JoJo and KimiUso are rallying, and the rest are, well, the rest. This has been a very strong season, and I’m ready to see it close out in kind. Let’s run ’em down!

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Winter 2015 – Week 9 in Review

I’ll just come out and say it – this week kinda sucked. Almost everything on the weaker half of my list either hit a season low point or continued a losing streak, and even Shirobako’s episode was only “great.” I felt kinda awkward just dropping sad remark after sad remark, but this was just not a respectable week for a lot of shows. Fortunately, the top tier remains strong, and that’s definitely the most important thing. Both Death Parade and Maria nailed absolutely critical episodes, Yuri Kuma didn’t make any real missteps, and Shirobako just settled back into “a very solid Shirobako episode.” The season isn’t ending gracefully for some, but things are still gonna be okay. Let’s run ’em down!

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Winter 2015 – Week 8 in Review

Highs and lows this week, with stellar performances from Shirobako, Death Parade, and even Rolling Girls, but some real stinkers from Parasyte, Yatterman Night, and others. Honestly not a strong week overall – several of the more reliable shows really dropped the ball, and there’s only so much Shirobako can do to save the entire week by itself. Come on, anime. I know you’ve come to lean on Shirobako, but you gotta at least put out an effort. Shirobako’s not gonna be here to save you forever.

Alright, that’s enough talking about Shirobako, let’s talk about Shirobako. RUNNING ‘EM DOWN!

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Winter 2015 – Week 7 in Review

Shirobako ruled the roost this week, with a standout episode that pulled all of the show’s ideas about finding your purpose together into one lovely, melancholy time capsule. The other shows were pretty cool too, but man, that Shirobako. That Shirobako.

Yeah, let’s just start right there. Running them down!

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Winter 2015 – First Half in Review

Dear god, it’s somehow that time again. The time when we all get together to celebrate the cartoons we love by putting them in a meaningless ranking system that denies the very purpose of storytelling altogether. The halfway point rankings feel even more meaningless than usual this season, as the current season is both very good and also full of shows that I’m enjoying all around the same level, but trifling problems like that won’t stand in the way of tradition. Let’s run ’em down!

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Winter 2015 – Week 5 in Review

Aw jeez, we’re nearing the halfway point already? This season and year are going way too fast, and all I’ve got to show for it is all this writing about cartoons. This was a fine week in anime, and it seems the various tiers for this season are pretty established at this point, even though it’s hard to directly compare many of the shows I’m watching. Maria the Virgin Witch is excellent, but shares almost nothing in common with most of my other shows. Shirobako is fantastic, but how do I compare what it does to something like Yuri Kuma Arashi? Fortunately, I’ve long since learned comparisons and evaluations are a sucker’s game – I’m happy just to enjoy the good in the many shows I’m watching.

Also next week I’m gonna rank them anyway because it’s tradition, but that’s besides the point. Let’s run ’em down!

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Winter 2015 – Week 4 in Review

An excellent week in anime this, uh, week, with pretty much everything I’m watching either holding strong, recovering from weaker episodes, or demonstrating new strengths altogether. Death Parade was easily the surprise star this time – Death Parade was almost a show I was watching out of obligation up until now (“yeah it’s well-constructed, but why should I care?”), but this episode felt sharper, more passionate, and more poignant than any of the previous trials. Plus it actually attacked the show’s premise, and even pointed to the idea that the arbitrary nature of these trials is intentionally reflective of how the arbitrary nature of life itself prevents us from being the selves we ought to be. Rolling Girls also made something of a comeback this week, and Yuri Kuma is starting to feel like it’s finally comfortable in its own world. Potential transitioned into results across the board this week, which means I guess I’ll be watching Too Many Shows for some time to come. Let’s run ’em down!

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Winter 2015 – Week 3 in Review

This week was kind of split between hits and misses. On the hit side, Yurikuma and JoJo both put out episodes that were significant improvements on their earlier material, and both Maria and Yatterman continue to excel. On the miss side, pretty much the most reliable of all shows finally hit a rough patch in this week’s Shirobako, and Rolling Girls failed to demonstrate its actual material will be as energetic and engaging as its introduction. But the season is still young, the schedule’s still strong, and there’s plenty of anime to go around. Let’s run ’em down!

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