First Reactions: Arpeggio of Blue Steel Episode 5

Arpeggio really seems to be alternating its format week by week, going from battle episode to aftermath to battle episode again. It’s a format that makes sense for a series that’s packing 2 episodes per disk (some of the biggest selling point goes into every volume), and they’re liable to keep it up unless the ending shaves the time between battles down to nearly zero and turns every matchup into an everything-but-the-kitchen-sink shakedown like the one in episode 4. In which case the people who stuck around just end up getting more bang for their buck.*

Continue reading

First Reactions: Arpeggio of Blue Steel Episode 2

The first episode of Arpeggio was very much an introductory one a few very high-octane minutes followed by an origin story for the main characters and their supertech submarine. That expositional phase of the series apparently mostly ended last week, as this week’s episode was what I would guess will be the meat of the series; naval combat that was as snazzily animated as it was thought out and tense.

Arpeggio-2-1

Episode 1 also brought some predictable backlash, with many commentators criticizing the full-3DCG animation style. Personally, I have the same stance on it that I had on Kaiji (loved it), Aku no Hana (not a huge fan), the cars in Initial D (Eurobeat), and many other shows with atypical artstyle. Choosing to be different means nothing, it really comes down to how well it gets executed. So far, the show’s been doing a more than respectable job of that. Meanwhile, the market continues to speak for itself, as the BD for the show’s first volume is currently the 8th-most preordered one of the season and rising in spite of a significantly shorter solicitation time.*

Continue reading

First Reactions: Dangan Ronpa Episode 9

Togami’s been an unremarkable character for most of the series. I say that because this episode he really stood out, pulling a Barry Marshall and drinking what was ostensibly poison to prove his point. Even before I knew what that point was, I was hooked on his presentation there. There’s levels of differences in the body language between a sip and a chug, and this was the latter.

DanganRonpa-9-2

Continue reading

First Reactions: Dangan Ronpa Episode 5

Monokuma’s background antics made this episode. But there was definitely a lot to like elsewhere.

DanganRonpa-5-2

Somewhere out there, a terrible writer is making a joke about not being allowed to bring pot in a courtroom

Continue reading

Sell Me in 20 Minutes: Dangan Ronpa, Go-Home Club, and Servant x Service

After sampling a bunch of try-hard comedies, it’s time to get to the real meat of Thursday’s crop. Or at least the stuff that was top-3 on himawari douga when I kicked up the streams.

Continue reading

First Reactions: Devil Survivor 2 Episode 10

Colossalcon 2013 was beyond awesome. Thanks to everyone who came to one of our panels. We had a blast and learned all about why Kamen Rider and Idolm@ster have the best fanbases. Now back to your regularly scheduled anime blog!

I feel like the entire staff of AIC Plus ate some infected raw cookie dough or something about midway through episode 6’s production and didn’t get better before making the second half of this episode, because it was *such* a return to form for the biggest trio of bros in anime production.

Continue reading

First Reactions: Devil Survivor 2 Episode 9

The thing about a Kishi Seiji series is that each moment is like casting a die; it could be great or it could be garbage. This episode was a pretty good example of that principle in a nutshell, as it suddenly pulled competency out of nowhere and ended up being pretty fun to watch.

Continue reading