Ashita no Anime

Anime of Tomorrow

Tag Archives: Eureka Seven AO

Anime of the Week (11/25 – 12/1)

Anime of the Week – Sakurasou no Pet na Kanojo
Sakurasou5 Failure—I mean REAL failure—is not a dilemma that is easy to address. But Sorata’s comeback from the edge of despair to find the determination to give his dream another go is terrific. It’s truly wonderful having friends who will be there to make sure you laugh instead of cry when the weight of life gets you down. Also, kudos for sneaking in a swimsuit segment that actually felt like a natural change of pace rather than an out-of-place fanservice excuse.                              
November 25 SAO Ep. 21 All in all, this series has way too many transition episodes that serve no other purpose besides providing new information.
Shinsekai Ep. 9 I somehow find it odd that the amateurish sleuthing of these young people seems to have gone unnoticed by the authorities.
Little Busters Ep. 8 This is how an anime based on a dating sim should be done. Introduce the girls organically instead of using arcs.
Sengoku Basara Ep. 2 The worst part of this anime is that it doesn’t explain ANYTHING. Is it too much to ask for some background info?
Sengoku Basara Ep. 3 Um…What just happened? I feel like I missed an entire war and now all the characters are living out their epilogues.
Sengoku Basara Ep. 4 The characters have no personality and the battles lack strategy; banging rocks together would be more entertaining.
Sengoku Basara Ep. 5 I let Masamune’s horse-cycle slide until a mech showed up. Inconsistent doesn’t begin to describe this anime’s tone.
Girls und Panzer Ep. 6 This is how a battle should go. Teamwork, tactics, terrain advantage and a nail-biting, edge-of-your-seat climax.
November 26 Ichizon Lv.2 Ep. 2 This anime’s usual style of starting off halfway through the conflict and getting distracted along the way is too fun.
Total Eclipse Ep. 21 I know I’ve said people can’t stop fighting even in the face of extinction, but this might be taking it too far.
November 27 Eureka AO Ep. 23 To a large degree, Ao’s hesitation in the face of the inevitable decision he’s forced to make continues to be annoying.
Eureka AO Ep. 24 The drama of characters’ past decisions is made moot when it all ends up just being erased as if it had never happened.
Sakurasou Ep. 8 There is a powerful sense of drive and accomplished in the way Sorata chases his dreams with such clarity and determination.
November 28 Jormungand PO Ep. 8 Ok, we get it! Koko and Minami have a secret plan they’re working on and everyone wants in. Tell us what the heck it is!
November 30 Chuunibyou Ep. 9 My day was made when Nibutani’s attempt to get Yuuta and Rikka together succeeded genuinely, deeply and wholeheartedly.
Psycho-Pass Ep. 8 Some smart detective work, a macabre philosophical viewpoint and tenacious characters create a masterpiece of intrigue.
December 1 Zetsuen Ep. 9 Value is not intrinsic. It is a human construct that varies from person to person. We are the ones who give meaning to life.
BTOOOM! Ep. 9 Between psychological attacks on people’s character, reading body language and battlefield tactics, this anime has it all.

*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.

Anime of the Week (9/23 – 9/29)

Anime of the Week – Rinne no Lagrange 2
All too often the fun series that lack deeper meaning get overlooked a little too easily in favor of their more grandiose counterparts. But there’s nothing wrong with keeping things simple and just telling a straightforward, solid story that’s well-paced and feels really good.                              
September 23 SAO Ep. 12 A great example of something that pushes our conception of sentience. Sadly, it seems the heroes’ honeymoon will be cut short.
Kokoro Connect Ep. 12 I think rediscovering important things you forgot from your childhood would be worth turning back into a kid.
September 24 Total Eclipse Ep. 13 Yuuya can’t die yet, but he’s in a real pinch. How honest our heroes will be with their feelings remains to be seen.
Lagrange 2 Ep. 12 What a weird and somehow fitting ending to a series that did a great job dancing the line between serious and silly.
Dog Days 2 Ep. 12 The story seems to have glossed over that this is an action / romance at its heart because the conflict has escaped.
Hagure Yuusha Ep. 12 If Accel World is the epitome of a good open ending, then this series is a case for conclusions that need more closure.
Eureka AO Ep. 21 At this point, the plot has been lost entirely. I’m so hopelessly confused by jumbled pasts and poorly-informed motives.
September 26 Tari Tari Ep. 13 It’s really ironic. In an attempt to be truly beautiful and dramatic, everything instead feels over the top and empty.
H ga Dekinai Ep. 11 I’m not sure a somber tone is the right move. Everything was always so lighthearted and honest—if at times too ecchi.
September 28 H ga Dekinai Ep. 12 This was a nice surprise. The ending turned out smart, moving and best of all it resolved in a really original way.
September 29 Koichoco Ep. 12 Chisato has some smart remarks to Yuuki regarding his prioritizing her over the election they all worked so hard on.
Eureka AO Ep. 22 How many times will every character change their affiliation or alliance? I get that right and wrong are in flux, but jeez.

*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.

Anime of the Week (9/9 – 9/15)

Anime of the Week – Sword Art Online
After its ominous start followed up by an epic boss battle, SAO became an episodic stroll as we watched Kirito lend his assistance to one young lady after another…until last week when things changed. There’s finally some pressure on our heroes and as the focus shifts from surviving to just living, the story can only become more enriched.                              
September 9 Koichoco Ep. 9 Yep. I knew this series would have some excellent moments of backstabbing politics, sad memories and heartbreaking love.
SAO Ep. 10 Where did all this edge-of-your-seat tension come from suddenly? The action and plot development has finally picked up the pace.
September 10 Kokoro Connect Ep. 10 Between conceited assumptions and a heartfelt confession, Inaba is an absolute mess. Why does love mess people up?
Hagure Yuusha Ep. 10 Scattered and overly ecchi—I say it every time—this series also mixes in a good amount of serious action and drama.
Hyouka Ep. 21 Maybe it’s because I’ve never been loved or in love, but I think Satoshi doesn’t know what an enviable position he’s in.
Lagrange 2 Ep. 10 The calm before the storm has passed and all bets are off. I’m expecting the ending to be spirited, but fairly generic.
Total Eclipse Ep. 11 Things are getting predictable. If Yuuya rushes to save “Princess” Yui from the BETA, I want you to know I called it.
Eureka AO Ep. 19 Wow. What started as simple business politics turned into one of the biggest shocks and twists I’ve seen in this series.
September 11 Dog Days 2 Ep. 10 Yeah…pretty ordinary. The spark of creativity has left and this battle is really just about going through the motions.
September 12 Tari Tari Ep. 11 This anime doesn’t handle its time skips gracefully. Everything is too cliché and the characters are always victims.
H ga Dekinai Ep. 9 I like that this series is not following a rigid, standard formula and actually has an expanding and evolving conflict.
September 13 Arcana Famiglia Ep. 10 I like that this series isn’t a drawn out contest, but will the arcana duel ever happen? There’s not much time left.
September 14 Natsuyuki Rendezvous Ep. 11 I really hate romance anime that cut off the story right at the moment the hero and heroine fall in love.
Koichoco Ep. 10 The dark secrets are finally coming to light and a lot of the characters’ unique quirks are starting to make sense.
September 15 H ga Dekinai Ep. 10 As simple and empty as some of the scenes are in this series, it still keeps twisting and turning with my expectations.
Accel World Ep. 23 Although some realism has left the battles in favor of contests of willpower, it’s still epic, dynamic and emotional.
Eureka AO Ep. 20 Sadly, things have started to get needlessly complicated and I’m losing perspective on what exactly is happening and why.

*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.

Anime of the Week (8/26 – 9/1)

Anime of the Week – Hyouka
Ah the irony. In the attempt to make a wild guess while still reaching a plausible conclusion to demonstrate his own falibility, Houtarou only succeeded in proving his skills of deduction may exceed his modest self-assessment far more than he ever expected. Oh, and Chitanda’s earnest expressions are adorable.                              
August 26 SAO Ep. 8 Even in an MMO, food is a good way to bond with others. At Kirito’s level, does he have anything to fear from other players?
Kokoro Connect Ep. 8 It’s hard to say anything profound about plot pieces that are a setup for the next step but don’t really go anywhere.
August 27 Dog Days 2 Ep. 8 I wish they could have put more effort into the composition of Yui Horie’s song. She has such a gentle and pleasant voice.
Total Eclipse Ep. 9 I can only imagine how a 20+ soldier must feel being the rearguard to an army of more experienced, younger pilots.
Lagrange 2 Ep. 8 The Jersey Club characters are energetic, proper and air-headed and now with the addition of Reiko they have clumsy.
Hyouka Ep. 19 This organic flow of thoughts from a solid start to a wild conclusion has a more intellectual feel than I’m accustomed to.
August 28 Hagure Yuusha Ep. 8 It’s time for things to get serious. Akatsuki is overpowered and that’s fine, but I’d like him to have a real match.
Arcana Famiglia Ep. 8 This series always has a nice charm to it, but I can’t see its overall objective. What end is it headed towards?
August 29 Tari Tari Ep. 9 To highlight each character’s struggles and efforts, this series has a weird flow of mini-arcs that feel too formulaic.
H ga Dekinai Ep. 6 Interestingly, this very ecchi series is showing the ability to tell a complex and engaging, if somewhat clichéd story.
H ga Dekinai Ep. 7 I’ve watched quite a few bad ecchi anime, but this series makes me glad I can look past its titillating shortcomings.
August 30 Arcana Famiglia Ep. 9 I like using tarot as the basis for supernatural abilities, but I don’t think those powers are interpreted very well.
H ga Dekinai Ep. 8 I say it often, but writers need to have more confidence and stay away from ecchi that ruins an otherwise good story.
August 31 Natsuyuki Rendezvous Ep. 9 Gosh, this series really does like to drag out this climax it’s been building towards for almost three episodes.
Koichoco Ep. 8 While it’s great that the side characters are getting some attention, it’s distracting a little too much from the main story.
September 1 Accel World Ep. 21 We have hit that time in the season when all anime are entering their climax phases and nothing decisive is happening.
Eureka AO Ep. 18 I understand the conflict in Ao’s heart over the power he wields, but from a writing standpoint it’s too wishy-washy.
Hagure Yuusha Ep. 9 Izumi’s line at the start of the episode is blunt, but she summarizes this series well. You can’t stay mad at Akatsuki.

*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.

Anime of the Week (8/19 – 8/25)

Anime of the Week – Hyouka
Houtarou possesses an honorable character trait that I wish more people would appreciate. He’s willing to never be completely certain unless he has all the facts straight. It’s a humility that allows him to be honest with himself and never resign to take something at face value.                                
August 19 SAO Ep. 7 Dealing with the troubles of romance is fine, but I feel like this MMORPG is too much massively multiplayer and not enough RPG.
Kokoro Connect Ep. 7 I think the mind swapping arc was funnier than unleashed desires, but acting on your emotions has an honesty I like.
August 20 Dog Days 2 Ep. 7 Another old idea, reused and rehashed. This series is still fun, but I hoped there would be more weight to its triumphs.
Total Eclipse Ep. 8 I guess it’s a testament to the writers who envisioned a collapsing world where humanity is still divided by politics.
Lagrange 2 Ep. 7 There’s something inescapably likeable about a girl like Madoka who has the honesty and guts to call things as they are.
Hyouka Ep. 18 It’s interesting how a few random thoughts can create the perfect storm that strikes your memory like a bolt of lightning.
August 21 Samurai X Ep. 1 Throughout every second of this anime, I’m bothered by the fact that Kenshin is the only character without black hair.
Samurai X Ep. 2 An anime that shows visceral death but not torture has annoying thematic inconsistencies, even if the story is interesting.
Samurai X Ep. 3 Someone thought it was stylistic to use live action video in an anime, but it makes mixing drawing and CGI look amazing.
Samurai X Ep. 4 With bad animation, barely audible music and fairly decent writing, I don’t see how this is the best anime of all time.
Tari Tari Ep. 8 As the heartbreak comes and goes, it’s hard to feel strongly for the characters when everything works out so easily.
August 23 Hagure Yuusha Ep. 7 After six and a half episodes back on Earth, I’d thought we were finished with Alazzard. I’m glad to see there’s more.
August 24 Natsuyuki Rendezvous Ep. 8 How long can a story drag out the protagonist’s decision to press forward when he’s thinking of giving up?
Koichoco Ep. 7 I love how playful this series is with its suggestive tones. It never crosses any lines and always maintains an air of class.
August 25 Accel World Ep. 20 I had a feeling something would happen soon that would trigger the Armor of Catastrophe to begin to influence Haru.
Eureka AO Ep. 17 As the reality of the world comes into focus, so too do Ao’s motivations. I can’t wait to see what his decision will be.
H ga Dekinai Ep. 5 As juvenile as this anime’s themes are, I’m always left with the impression that its heart is in the right place.

*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.

Anime of the Week (8/12 – 8/18)

Anime of the Week – Koi to Senkyo to Chocolate
After tripping and falling on stage, Oojima displayed an awesome mastery of the art of political spin to bring the crowd over to his side. And the Madoka cameo was the icing on the cake.                                
August 12 SAO Ep. 6 I like how this mystery played out by the rules of video game logic. It was a clever bit of detective work on Kirito’s part.
Kokoro Connect Ep. 6 I had presumed this anime’s title meant it was only about mind swapping, but I’m pleased to see the premise evolve.
Dog Days 2 Ep. 6 The demon king appears, but his evil seems to be limited to giving us more fanservice. And I had high hopes for this anime.
August 13 Lagrange 2 Ep. 6 As hot-headed as some characters are in this series, I can’t shake the feeling Madoka has way too much influence on them.
Total Eclipse Ep. 7 I don’t know whether to accept the developing romantic tones as good dramatic tension or a breakdown in intensity.
Hyouka Ep. 17 The mystery solving is back, but either the difficulty level has increased or this series is doing a poorer job leaving clues.
August 14 Tari Tari Ep. 7 Why can’t older folks let young people chase their dreams without constantly getting hung up on excessive pragmatism?
August 17 Natsuyuki Rendezvous Ep. 7 Shimao seems to have accomplished all he wanted to, but how will Hazuki react when he realizes what’s happened?
Arcana Famiglia Ep. 6 I have a soft spot for the three young heroes, in spite of their tendency to get themselves into trouble too easily.
Arcana Famiglia Ep. 7 For all the hype about the tournament of succession in the first episode, there’s been hardly any mention of it since.
Koichoco Ep. 5 I love the spontaneous and silly ways the members of the food club show their solidarity and affection for each other.
August 18 Koichoco Ep. 6 I missed this anime during the Olympics. I continue to be impressed by how well it mixes comedy, romance and political drama.
Eureka AO Ep. 16 What is this new development? Are people disappearing? Is history rewriting itself? This series always throws curve balls.
Accel World Ep. 19 Now that this little Okinawan diversion is over, we can get back to the main story and all the tension it’s built up.

*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.

Anime of the Week (7/22 – 7/28)

Anime of the Week – Accel World
In shounen anime it’s not uncommon to have a segment where the main character dedicates himself to training in order to overcome a new obstacle. How it handles this kind of character growth can be a real defining moment for a series or it can be a cheesy flop and Accel World follows Haruyuki’s path to discovering his new strength fabulously.                                
July 22 SAO Ep. 3 It’s said you should let go of the past so it won’t drag you down, but holding on to a cherished memory can make you stronger.
Hagure Yuusha Ep. 3 This anime really lives up to its title of “Rogue Hero.” Akatsuki is a jerk, but he comes through when it matters most.
Eureka AO Ep. 14 Sometimes the reality you accepted gets turned on its head when what you wanted and what actually is no longer match.
Koichoco Ep. 3 I just KNEW the food club was going to get embroiled in this shady, underhanded political conspiracy sooner or later!
Dog Days 2 Ep. 3 While it’s nice to see the underdog finding success, all things considered perhaps Rebecca is doing a little too well.
Kokoro Connect Ep. 3 Although it was Taichi’s intention to give Yui more confidence around men, I think he took things a little too far.
Arcana Famiglia Ep. 3 It would appear that sometimes stories you didn’t think could be true turn out to be stranger than you imagined.
Natsuyuki Rendezvous Ep. 2 I’m beginning to think that Atsushi’s only reason to exist is to be an incorrigibly annoying pain in the butt.
July 23 Natsuyuki Rendezvous Ep. 3 Hazuki has made some interesting, metaphorical insights about the similarities between cut flowers and ghosts.
Rinne 2 Ep. 3 As kind and spirited as Madoka can be, too often she shows a side that is much too willing to sacrifice herself for others.
Total Eclipse Ep. 4 I like how Yuuya is forced to confront his multicultural heritage and the different mindset of American and Japanese.
Yuru Yuri 2 Ep. 2 Far too little happens in this series. The lack of story and the weak comedic links that remain aren’t holding together.
Hyouka Ep. 14 The mystery flair of this series has really declined, but it’s been replaced by a very fun and compelling school life drama.
July 24 H ga Dekinai Ep. 2 There are many similarities between this series and Shakugan no Shana. Red hair, fire, knee socks, energy drain, fuzetsu.
July 25 Tari Tari Ep. 4 I didn’t think it would be possible, but Konatsu’s determination is slipping, replaced by a modest attitude of compromise.
July 26 H ga Dekinai Ep. 3 The cast expands with more devilish girls, but I like how each of their contractor’s energy comes from different sources.
July 27 Natsuyuki Rendezvous Ep. 4 Now that Hazuki has hit a brick wall, I guess it’s Atsushi’s turn to try and win back the wife he left behind.
July 28 Accel World Ep. 16 This anime is so good at putting a simple concept like willpower into words and images unbelievably sharp and clean.
Eureka AO Ep. 15 While it’s not revolutionary writing, it’s still a cool twist to be left wondering just who the bad guys really are.
Koichoco Ep. 4 This series continues its pace of smart character development built around a framework of humor and serious social conflict.

*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.

Summer 2012 Recommendations

1. Accel World

The characters in this series are discovering something much bigger than themselves and the humbling growth that they undergo is only surpassed by some of the incredibly well-paced fight sequences at punctuate a plot that never misses a beat.

 

2. Sword Art Online

An absolutely gorgeous art style combined with the development of politics among a locked-in society of young people is flavored by action scenes that grow and climax in astounding overtures.

 

3. Koichoco

A mix of comedy, romance and politics as told through the eyes of a colorful group of honest young men and women is just the tip of the iceberg for something that feels like an ice-cold conspiracy running counter to their obliviously carefree lives.

 

4. Rinne no Lagrange 2

Sometimes fighting can’t solve all problems and that’s when you can’t be afraid to sit down with your friends and have a heart-to-heart talk to resolve the issues that are tearing everything apart.

 

5. Tari Tari

When an authority figure kicks you down you can either give up or get up and keep on fighting the opposition using any means necessary to achieve your dream—even if some of those ideas are silly and cause you to lock horns with your friends.

 

6. Kokoro Connect

All craziness breaks loose when you have to be prepared at all times to suddenly find yourself inhabiting the body of a friend you never thought you’d become this close to.

 

7. Eureka 7 Astral Ocean

While this series’ first half wasn’t bad with themes that touched on just how much of an adult a child should be forced to become, it’s really starting to find its groove as the second half gets under way and the very big picture that unities this series with the overall canon of the setting at large is shaping up to be something deftly constructed and really amazing.

 

8. Hyouka

When two opposing world views—minimalist laziness and intense curiosity—clash in a titanic battle of wills, the resulting adventure through a series of engrossing mysteries is honey and gold for your mind and heart.

 

9. Dog Days 2

Just because your strengths are different from those of your friends doesn’t mean that you can’t be the hero of your own story.  Have confidence, seek challenge and never sell yourself short.

 

10. Arcana Famiglia

Every once in a while it’s good to just sit back and relax with a good shounen anime with solid characters and a somewhat standard, but nonetheless compelling story.

 

11. Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse

This is probably the best “standard” mecha anime I’ve seen since I can’t remember when.  These days the mecha concept is way too caught up in ridiculously awesome, off-the-wall craziness like Gurren Lagann, sharing time with school life drama or a music career like Full Metal Panic or Macross Frontier or the machines are intertwined in some kind of iffy metaphysical force like Evangelion, RahXephon, Eureka Seven, Star Driver or Rinne no Lagrange.  So to just see a normal, military story with pilots and mecha that exist in a reality that closely resembles our own is a real treat to watch, even if said story isn’t blockbuster material.

Anime of the Week (6/24 – 6/30)

Anime of the Week – Accel World
This series is really making a reputation for itself as a top-notch shounen / action anime. A generous dose of science fiction, a dash of the supernatural, some hints of romance, a sprinking of philosophy and just enough comedy have created a winning formula.
June 24 Fate/Zero Ep. 25 What an utter, inane, pointless, rubbish ending. Easily one of the most disappointing anime I’ve ever watched.
Acchi Kocchi Ep. 11 The jokes were really hitting their marks this time. I love it that the topics are usually things I can relate to.
June 26 Hyouka Ep. 11 Just when I thought this mystery was sewn up, it goes and gets torn open again. I feel I’m loosing some of the pieces, too.
June 27 Eureka AO Ep. 10 I like these kinds of twists where the older leadership gets turned on its head in favor of younger, more creative minds.
Tasogare Otome Ep. 12 I was worried this serious ending would feel weird compared to the rest of the series. But my fears were unfounded.
June 28 Jormungand Ep. 12 This season finale was in too much of a hurry to wrap things up. That’s a shame because there’s another season coming.
June 29 Accel World Ep. 12 Those who seek power must be careful. Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely, but it rocks absolutely, too.
Acchi Kocchi Ep. 12 I feel like this series was a profound lesson about innocent romance coated in a sweet shell of delicious moe comedy.
Sankarea Ep. 12 Since this series is presumably going to get wrapped up in its OVAs, this season finale seems to be building up to that end.
June 30 Eureka AO Ep. 11 I really like these complicated spy vs counter spy entanglements that leave you wondering whose side everyone is on.

*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.

Anime of the Week (6/10 – 6/16)

Anime of the Week – Jormungand
Koko’s foresight and ability to read people adds terrific depth to her character and is a complement to some well-thought action scenes and perfectly-timed comedic moments.                                
June 11 Fate/Zero Ep. 23 Between characters with inconsistent personalities and stupid one-upmanship fights there’s no shortage of bad writing.
Acchi Kocchi Ep. 10 It’s a little unseasonal to have a Christmas episode this time of year. But that doesn’t detract from the charm.
Kore wa Zombie 2 Ep. 4 The first season had a wacky story, but it was definitely going someplace. This is completely aimless and boring.
Tasogare Otome Ep. 10 The first-person POV animation style of this episode really sells the effect of experiencing someone else’s memories.
Medaka Box Ep. 5 I’m impressed by how well many anime from this season are finding good twists to put on stereotypical fanservice themes.
June 12 Hyouka Ep. 8 It seems the classics club is gaining a reputation for solving mysteries. I can sympathize with Oreki’s dislike of summer.
June 13 Jormungand Ep. 10 I love how Koko can request a huge piece of artillery with the same tone of voice as a child asking for an ice cream cone.
June 15 Sankarea Ep. 0 The cryptic tone of fate that fills this simple prequel has a naturalness to it that epitomizes everyone’s personality.
Sankarea Ep. 9 This break from the action of the main story feels misplaced. But it was a nice bit of insight into Mero’s dry personality.
June 16 Accel World Ep. 10 Seeing the full game world of Brain Burst is a real eye-opener. Aging mentally but not physically must be incredible.
Sankarea Ep. 10 Danichirou is the overprotective father of daughters’ nightmares. His blind devotion has even broken his neglected wife.
Eureka AO Ep. 9 Ao’s chivalrous attitude is a good character trait, but I’m inclined to think it doesn’t get him into trouble often enough.

*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.

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