Kimi to Boku: how much reality is there in fiction?

Anyone know why KB was filled with cats? It’s all to do with the little story that shares its name ^^

Following a number of hits that follow groups of girls in high school – Azumanga Daioh, K-ON and Lucky Star, to name a few – anime viewers were unusually presented with two series over the last year that dealt with their counterparts. One, The Daily Lives of (Boys) High School Boys, was apparently quite a hit with the young male demographic, but it didn’t really float my boat. The other, Kimi to Boku (aka You and Me), was much more aligned to my tastes – and not unexpectedly too, for it was originally written to appeal to the fairer sex. (I mean, look at those cats!) Therein lies the debate: are shows like K-ON and Lucky Star, which were arguably created to with a predominantly male target demographic in mind, accurate representations of high school girls? And on the flip side, is Kimi to Boku or (Boys) High School Boys an accurate representation of high school boys?

Boys, flowers, and hair…?

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Contemplating Nisemonogatari: …and the controversial…

Some of the scenes in episode two set off the critics, but it was the fourth installment of Nise that really lit the fireworks. This being the episode where Shinobu, in her 8-year-old form, is shown bathing for a good half of the episode, in Araragi’s presence.

Why is there a Degas picture here, you might ask? Well, read on…

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Contemplating Nisemonogatari: …the bad…

Warning: slight spoilers for Kizumonogatari included…

This scene says it all really...

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words…but I’m not in any way inclined to post screenshots of what I despised about Nisemonogatari. And no, unlike with a number of other fans, it wasn’t actually Shinobu in the 4th episode that offended me – explanation for this coming soon. Rather, it was certain shots of Karen spread over various episodes. If I had to put it into words, ‘the pervertization of the viewer’ might work.

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Contemplating Nisemonogatari: the good…

Back in 2008, Bakemonogatari captured the attention of many fans, probably for a number of reasons. However, the reason you hear bandied about most seems to be the crisp and refreshing dialogue, which has the characters flirting, trading jokes, sprouting their idiosyncratic verbal trademarks, and the occasional thought-provoking way of thinking. Most people who did not spoil themselves with the novels were expecting the same out of Nisemonogatari, its chronological sequel.

This is flirting? Well...yes.

Whilst that expectation wasn’t, IMHO, the smartest thing to take into this series (as I will attempt to discuss over a few more posts), I contend that Nisemonogatari actually one-upped its predecessor in one particular area. By this, of course, I’m referring to the battle of words between Kagenui and Araragi about the value of a fake.

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Bakemonogatari: the core of an obsession

So here’s the first of the two ‘biggies’ that I’ve just never really figured out how to write about. One guy, six girls, two little sisters and some rather disturbing animation in the first episode. I really didn’t expect to fall in love with this series.

I love you.

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Working’!!: また、おかわりお願いします~!!

There should be at least one more season to come, and until then, there really are only a couple of things that one can talk about with regards to the second helping of one of my favourite animated comedies ever.

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In memory of 2010 part 7: Anisong and Fanworks

Music is by far the most subjective aspect of any show. I’ve already read several reviews noting that 2010 hasn’t been a particularly strong year for theme songs. Whilst I agree that there probably isn’t a future classic like Cruel Angel’s Thesis or Sobakasu (last year’s Kimi no shiranai monogatari is probably the most recent one), I have more ‘favourites’ from this year than any year before.

In no particular order, there was
Uragiri no Yuuyake (Theatre Brook) Durarara!! 1st OP
Complication (ROOKiEZ is PUNK’D) – Durarara!! 2nd OP
Sign of Love (immi) – Saraiya Goyou OP
SOMEONE ELSE (eto…WORKING!! gals)
Heart Edge ni idomou -Go to Heart Edge- (WORKING!! guys)
Kuchizuke (BUCK-TICK) – Shiki 1st OP

Strangely enough though, most of the theme sequences I liked watching differ:
Uragiri no Yuuyake, Complication and SOMEONE ELSE again
Kuragehime OP
Otomo Youkai Zakuro OP
Soredemo Machi wa Mawatteiru OP and ED (although the live action one is the most entertaining)

However, I personally think that 2010 should be known as the year for theme fanworks. From the numerous MADs produced for the Durarara!! endings to the myriad of fan dubs. The following DRRR!!xCode Geass offering caught my eye because it doesn’t just follow the “Trust Me” ED sequence, but also adds its own touches.


However, I’d like to end with my absolute favourite from the past year, a favourite that was reflected in a Joysound karaoke survey: without further ado, I present Rimone-sensei’s Orihara Izaya, singing Ren’ai Circulation.

WORKING!!: now that’s what I call comedy!

Ehhhhhh!! Souma's actually...WORKING!!

Comedy is often considered the most difficult genre to pull off, with good reason. A good comedy must not only have jokes that appeal to the sensibilities of its intended audience, it must also have great actors (or animators) with brilliant comedic timing. For me, WORKING!! had all of that in abundance.

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Uraboku: fanservice rules!

It’s been on my mind for a while: what in the world does one write about a series that most people stopped even trying to find positive things to note, much less actual food for discussion, just over half way through the series? A series that I only really watched because of its bishounen characters are mostly brought to life by voices that I love in varying degrees (along with one whom I had to battle to stop cringing at). Well, after reading Chronolynx’s “mildly sarcastic retrospective” on the series (on THAT anime blog), I finally figure out what I could try.

Series synopsis here – I’m lazy.

Initially, I was quite disappointed to find that they’d removed a lot of the humour from Uraboku. The manga usually gives me something to laugh or giggle about, albeit not when the story takes a serious turn, but very few of these light-hearted moments survived the animation process.

     

Practically forcing myself to catch up every couple of weeks, only the occasional SD moment kept me going.

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Quick Review: Sora wo Kakeru Shoujo

     

In the year 311 of the orbital calendar, humanity has migrated to countless colony clusters in space. Shishido Akiha, whilst timidly seeking her own place in a family full of highly skilled sisters, encounters an eccentric and egotistical AI by the name of Leopard. This meeting sends her life – a happy if directionless one accompanied by her family’s maid and best friend, Imo-chan – into upheaval as Inter-Colony-Police officer Itsuki Kannagi and taciturn young girl Honoka Kawai barge into her life.

(-partially based on the summary from ANN…)

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