Series Reviews

Blu-Ray Review – Danganronpa 3: The End of Hope’s Peak High School: Future Arc

“It’s clear that a lot of thought and care went into the final adventure of Makoto Naegi and friends, and the results mostly speak to that effort. The story’s primary fault lies with the very nature of its new Killing Game, which doesn’t allow for the murder-mystery fun that the precious games delivered. Instead of participating in whodunit mysteries and gripping trials, the Future Foundation members end up in a battle of wits and deception that moves the plot along swiftly at the expense of the goofy mystery and bizarre intrigue that made the franchise famous. A couple of sub-plots end up petering out instead of resolving in a satisfying manner, but the main story moves along so briskly that those loose threads and dead ends are a bit easier to forgive.”

You can read the rest of my review on Anime News Network.

Series Reviews

Blu-Ray Review – Danganronpa 3: The End of Hope’s Peak High School: Despair Arc

“While I personally admire this idiosyncratic method of execution, it also means that this Blu-Ray set only makes up half the story, and releasing the Future Arc separately makes experiencing Danganronpa 3 in its intended viewing order pretty inconvenient. But it wouldn’t be Danganronpa without this kind of wild ambition. Over the years, series writer Kazutaka Kodakahas crafted a complex storyline filled with some of the most bizarre-yet-weirdly-lovable characters around. In this final curtain call for the Hope’s Peak gang, the crew at Studio Lerche obviously had a lot of fun bringing this wacky world to life. What the Despair Arc such a treat is that we get to wind things back and finally see what set the world so topsy-turvy for the first time, without the obfuscation of Monokuma’s half-truths and the general confusion caused by gleaning scraps of information in the middle of a Killing Game. Just by offering to answer some long-standing questions about how Junko Enoshima got her master plan of despairful societal collapse rolling, the Despair Arc is an exciting proposition for any fan of Danganronpa.”

You can read the rest of my Danganronpa 3: Despair Arc review on Anime News Network.

Series Reviews

DVD Review – After War: Gundam X

I got to review both volumes of After War: Gundam X for Shelf Life on ANN. Check out the full writeups below!

“I enjoyed my time spent with Gundam X, even if the show took its sweet time getting on my good side. It’s hardly without flaws, and it’s never quite as smart or compelling as it wants to be, but the series ends up doing a fine job in spite of itself. I can’t give it my fullest endorsement, since so much of this show’s quality is dependent on the viewer’s patience and tolerance for cheap-looking animation, not to mention a heaping helping of 90s flavored cheese.”

Volume 1 Review

Volume 2 Review

Series Reviews

Blu-Ray Review – When They Cry KAI

A review for the When They Cry KAI  Blu-Ray release is up on ANN!

“When I reviewed the first season of When They Cry back in March, I was struck by how much I liked the show, given its rough first impressions. The animation and character designs were pretty ugly, and the story was presented in a rather unique way that nonetheless created some noticeable pacing and tonal issues.
Still, in spite of its problems, When They Cry season 1 managed to create an atmosphere of genuinely unsettling horror, one backed up by a compelling central mystery and an endearing cast. This month, Sentai is releasing When They Cry’s follow-up, When They Cry: Kai, for the first time in the West. Does this second entry in the Higurashi saga live up to the expectations set by the first?”

To see the rest, check out the link below!

ANN Shelf Life – When They Cry: Kai

Series Reviews

Blu-Ray Review – Eden of the East Collector’s Edition

My review for Eden of the East ‘s Collector’s Edition is up on ANN!

“I was just getting ready start college when Eden of the East was released back in 2009, and at the time it blew me away. The series’ initial 11-episode run was one of the most tightly paced and intriguing mystery/thrillers I’d seen in a long time, and when I got to the cliffhanger ending I was dying to know how everything played out. Starting a new life at university ended up being a little more challenging than I’d imagined, though (surprise surprise). Time, work, and a college student’s budget prevented me from catching up with Eden of the East’s two finale movies, King of Eden and Paradise Lost, at the time of their release. Now that Funimation has repackaged both the series and its films into a gorgeous, limited edition collector’s set, though, I finally had the chance to play catch-up. Was it worth the wait?” Continue reading “Blu-Ray Review – Eden of the East Collector’s Edition”

Series Reviews

DVD Review – Kingdom (Season 1)

My review for Kingdom Season 1 is up on ANN!

Studio Pierrot‘s Kingdom is an adaptation of Yasuhisa Hara‘s manga of the same name, which has been running in Shonen Jump for the last decade. Following the lives of key figures from China’s Warring States period, Kingdom incorporates the broad strokes of documented history and blends them into a canvas of familiar, if well executed shonen tropes. In this way it almost feels like the anime equivalent of 300. It uses the flavor of ancient politics and warfare rooted in real history as a draw, without ever worrying about things like realism or accuracy bogging down the storytelling. Does Kingdom live up to the epic history it aspires to mythologize? Well, that depends.”

To see the rest, check out the link below!

ANN Shelf Life – Kingdom Season 1

Series Reviews

Blu-Ray Review – Terror in Resonance

My review for Terror in Resonance is up on ANN!

“Reviewing Terror in Resonance was a very exciting proposition for me because I knew almost absolutely nothing about it. Though the amount of shows I end up keeping up with on a regular basis every year is fairly concentrated, I spend enough time with my face buried in wikis and review sites that I almost always know the main details of most of the shows I’m not watching. Terror in Resonance did not have this problem to worry about. Outside of knowing it was the latest work from famed director Shinichiro Watanabe (of Cowboy Bebop and Samurai Champloo fame), the only background info I had about this anime going in was that it focused on the subject of terrorism in modern-day Japan. Somehow or another Terror in Resonance slipped underneath my all-too-curious radar back in 2014, and am I ever glad it did, because not knowing what to expect helped me enjoy this series even more than I otherwise would have.”

To read the rest, hit the link below:

 

ANN Shelf Life – Terror in Resonance