Magi, Little Busters, Zetsuen no Tempest, Jojo

Thanks to killing aliens, tiresome anime cons, and a need for change, I’m probably going to drop the number of anime I’m following below 20 for the first time in a long time. Oh, you can also blame on Sket Dance ending.

There are three shows I’m kind of interested and a little impressed after one episode, and one show I’m actually really impressed. Can you guess which one?

As a total aside, the fact that we have Kyoto Animation fielding (in their usual straight-faced, laces-out way) a production about chuunibyou, it kind of ruins the way I see all the other dime-a-dozen stories with shounen dream-fuel. I mean, when I watched Psycho-Pass, I am just not impressed (at least, no more impressed than hearing Ling Tosite Sigure in an anime). I hate to say it but Ghost in the Shell? That was much better and highly more preferable, and not because of story or concept reasons. I think at core, otaku enjoy cyberpunk over, say, the endless regurgitated, finely-honed art of Japanese murder/crime mysteries. The methodocal and measured cinematography that comes with no rough spots (except spurts of gore I guess) leads me to believe it takes itself too seriously.

Too seriously is, in a nutshell, the bubble of chuunibyou. But I believe most otaku would rather ask “Y SO SRS,” at least ones overseas.

So, yes, this is why I think Zetsuen no Tempest is impressive–because it has that patented Ando pilot-episode juice and Bones-quality production. Remember Xam’d? This is almost that exciting. I have to admit though it kind of helps to be a fan of David Production’s Book of Bantorra, because the way they throw their setting-building babble around (re: bubble of chuunibyou) is almost the same. I think this is why that show hasn’t been so warmly received.

Speaking of David Pro, isn’t Jojo something? I don’t know why I don’t like to admit it, and I don’t, but I really enjoyed Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure (Phantom Blood). There’s just something really suitably cartoon-y about every David Production work that I really enjoy. And I’m not even a fan of the original material. I suspect this is why I watch so much crap, and have this nagging desire to finish Koichoco and Campione (as low as the odds of that may be). But it’s a lot of fun.

The whole hubbub about Little Busters is tiresome. I get it. I was into Key crap even back in the late 90s. But something is wrong when I’m happy that Kyoto Animation didn’t get to do this, so I wouldn’t have to hear about people wetting their pants about Little Busters both ways. I guess that is definitely more my problem than anyone else’s. Certain the anime looked just fine and hopefully there will be nothing to worry about. Thanks to meeting Tamiyasu at AX, I’m also slightly predisposed to like Rin, so that helps, however much little.

I think I came into Magi predisposed to like it, because, well, it’s the anime adaptation of a manga that adopted the general story to One Thousand and One Nights. How can I dislike it? My very first blue M:TG decks got djinns out the buttholes! I have to like it, right? It also helps that show is, as we know, not so serious. After seeing the first episode, I still kind of like it, but I learned quickly how I can dislike it. Not that I do, but I can see the intersection where the cookie cutter meets the characterization and plot dough. Still, I remain positive…

Conclusion: A large part of my reaction to this season’s offering comes by the way of predisposed expectations and having your opinion influence mine. Not sure if that is good or bad, but I suppose that’s just how the dice roll. But we all know that, right?

20 Responses to “Magi, Little Busters, Zetsuen no Tempest, Jojo”

  • Taka

    So I’m watching Gintama, Toriko, Fairy Tail, Hunter x Hunter, Space Bros, Jormungand,Bakuman and Jojo. I’m looking for recommendations of shows to like hardcore watch as they are airing.

    For reference shows I didn’t finish from last season but intend to finish:
    Binbogami, Jintai, The girl I likes’ dead husband keeps haunting me, Dog Days, Yuru Yuri, and maybe Rinne no Lagrange.

    So I’m looking for shows that I definitely should be watching like NOW. And also for shows that I should watch at some point. I think we have somewhat similar tastes so anything you recommend would be helpful.

    • omo

      Maybe check out Magi and Zetsuen no Tempest.

      I’m watching a bunch of other stuff o/c, but will wait a few more episodes before making up my mind.

  • Hogart

    Tempest rubs me the right way, but sadly Magi doesn’t. I think I’d prefer the manga, since I’m not against the idea, but as an anime it just feels too shoddy somehow. It annoyed the hell out of me, and I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s because I was one of those Turbo Statis jerks, after the initial appeal of the Djinn wore off.

    It’s alright to like JoJo. I felt much the same way; I came into it thinking I’d hate it, but David seems capable of making just about anything fun.

    If I had a “most boring shows of the season” award, Little Busters and Robotics;Notes would be neck and neck. I think JC Staff’s handling LB quite well, given how uninteresting it’s been so far on its own merits.

    I’ve still to try K and Psycho Pass, but PP sounds like it has a chance to do something interesting and distinguish itself from its obvious “betters”.. here’s hoping.

    • omo

      Back when I quit M:TG, there was just normal Stasis. Turbo Stasis was totally like 5 years later.

      Boring shows are dime a dozen, but I can say that at this rate Psycho Pass will probably top that chart. Or Little Buster, if you like sex and/or violence.

    • Hogart

      Jeez, you’re right.. I really didn’t play much Blue at first, did I? Great, now I’ll have to dig out my old collection and see what the hell I played before 4th ed..

    • omo

      Blue was a molested rape culture victim before…oh, well after 4th ed I think. I think I played it just because originally I had a lot of blue rares out of luck. Also counters are kind of fun.

      I remember playing against old Stasis decks with my blue deck. It did well… unstable mutation on flying men (hey not dijinns but also arabic) were a little OP.

    • Hogart

      Oh that’s right.. I vaguely remember harassing people with Mana Short and small creatures (Prodigal Sorcerors), then casting that color-changing spell on one of my islands to make it Fireball-ready, then casting with all my mana and all of theirs via that nasty little Drain Power card, and countering any attempts they made to stop it. Jeez, MtG was fun :)

    • DarkFireBlade25


      I’m not quite sure why you think Psycho-Pass is going to be the most boring show this season as I believe that the crime/mystery genre fits rather well with the Orwellian backdrop of the show. Are you saying that it is just a showcase of what a giant budget can do (as I think K is)? I’m asking this because I think the crime/mystery genre is a staple part of the anime genre pool as any other like mecha and whatnot. It kind of seems like the nature of the high investment may have affected your opinion because of the chuunibyou topic that was emphasized in your mind.

    • omo

      What made Psycho-pass boring is its live-action-y face shots, heavy scene pans, color and mood themes and other directional choices in which works fine in a short feature or feature film or even the 1-hr format. Doing 22-minute anime episodes like this is tiresome and puts me to sleep.

      The comment about mystery is good, because I thought about it and I probably should’ve clarified it. Ghost in the Shell, for example, is also focused on some kind of plot/mystery/crime/conspiracy as its main plot that drives the story forward. But thematically it is SF/cyberpunk in a way where the context of this futuristic development is the background that all this other human elements play on top of. In Psycho-Pass, so far it’s trying very hard to make that same background play in the foreground. Granted this is just the pilot episode, but it’s making that cardinal sin of making a big deal of something everyone has to live with all the time.

      Plus, it’s not exactly an interesting topic for the average otaku. I mean, are we suppose to be fascinated with the whole “omg big bro” thing or “omg that gun is transforming wicked”? If it’s the latter, they sure didn’t really address that. And if it’s the former, it’s being done a little too heavy-handedly.

  • Fencedude

    Magi’s main cast is highly questionable. Other than Tomatoes, of course.

    • omo

      What do you mean questionable? You mean, it’s all-star, right?

    • Fencedude

      I’m really not feeling Ishihara Kaori as Aladdin, and Kaji Yuki as Alibaba is…yeah.

      The rest of the cast looks amazing, but I can’t help but feel those two were miscast. I’d say that Hocchan’s doing a more convincing young male voice as Riki in Little Busters. Ishihara Kaori just sounds like Kyouno Madoka.

    • omo

      I thought it was fine. But I guess time will tell.

  • dm00

    Gosh, Chuunibyou ruined Tempest for me. Maybe I’ll take another look. But, yes, Magi is one of the four or five series I’m likely to follow, despite the whiff of Shounen Jump about it.

    • omo

      When parents warn their kids about anime they shouldn’t watch that’ll rot their brains? Chuu2koi is pretty much THE example.

    • DarkFireBlade25

      psh, what are you talking about. Chuu2koi is the best thing ever. I mean it represents everything that little kids do in their early days: think they have super powers and make believe.

      Plus, it’s troperific. Highly educational IMO. 10/10 would ban- I mean watch.

  • Praestlin

    I never actually got back to you on the XCOM soldier naming thing, did I?

    I’m actually the same way as you. No specific scheme, except just to alter each name at least once, just to create that barest attachment.

    When they get a nickname I sometimes change it to become more appropriate to the country they’re from. French soldiers get their nicknames translated to Francais, etc.

    My only exception is when the soldier is a Japanese female, then I change the name to a high-ranking Saimoe seiyuu.

    Sadly, this meant an early, horrific demise for Rie Kugimiya T_T

  • vendredi

    Never thought I’d see the day when X-COM was turned into a big triple-A title… if you do the seiyuu playthrough, do update us on their progress.

    I have to agree with your points, starting off a viewing session with Chuunibyou really sort of throws a damper on everything else you try to watch afterward.

    Psycho Pass likewise struck me as a poor man’s Ghost in the Shell, but I feel there’s enough to make the theme different – GiTS was always more about pushing the boundaries of humanity. There’s no outright cybernetics in Psycho Pass just yet, and it’s far more about the whole profiling/privacy intrusion aspect of technology.

    Magi is a fun romp, but I’m slightly disappointed that it doesn’t actually attempt to tackle the whole crazy “story-within-a-story-within-a-story” tricks of the actual folktales, which I feel could work really superbly in an animated format (take Satoshi Kon’s movies, for example). In that sense I feel it’s not truly an animated 1001 Nights in the fullest sense.

    • omo

      I kind of agree, Magi would’ve been super interesting if it was like a series of stories and we’re watching it in meta.

      Anyway, I guess I have to come up with a list of Male names, because XCOM doesn’t do the gender thing with customization AFAIK.

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