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TOPIC: What ANIME are you watching?

What ANIME are you watching? 20 May 2017 00:24 #248769

Yep, I'm going there.

My love affair with Japanese animation has been mercurial. I often get drawn back into watching anime when it subverts genre somehow and gives me a reason to pay attention again; but this is often followed by multiple attempts at finding series that aren't derivative and/or exploitative and I fall off of the wagon.

I sort of quit anime back around 2008 but my teenager has been getting into a few angsty/violent shonen series like Attack On Titan and One Punch Man, so I've been browsing my old IRC/bakabt-fueled backlog of fansubs (btw, RIP bakabt, it's a private tracker now). He started watching Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica out of the blue, since it was on Netflix and ended up binge watching the whole thing & recommending it to me on a nearly daily basis. So I watched it and... wow. I'm back in. It's a magical girl anime that mutates pretty quickly into darker moral concepts, death, & torment. It's like Elfen Lied but with more substance. I was pleasantly surprised by it and would heartily recommend a binge-watch (12 eps).

After a few failed attempts at playing catch-up (still not really interested in Titan, & Sword Art Online looks like a disaster) and a bunch of quasi-hentai fanservice garbage, I did find PSYCHO PASS on Crunchyroll... all caps because Japan. I haven't completed it yet, but this one looks like a definite winner. It takes the Minority Report conceit of future-crime policing and adds a twist to it: getting too close to the traumatic action of arresting a certified future-crazy causes psychic contamination, so... compliant future-criminals with sufficient enforcement experience are given jobs as attack dogs, forming an odd caste system in law enforcement driven by an uber-AI that calculates mental health, and "investigators" who've been given a clean bill of health and are expected to supervise arrests... but not much else. Excellent writing, characterization, & pacing so far, and I see there's a second season so it must have been pretty successful.

Anyone else have recommendations and/or disparaging remarks about anime?
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What ANIME are you watching? 20 May 2017 00:33 #248770

I have certainly watched much less than in prior years. I think I aged out of a lot of it. I've been re-watching Cowboy Bebop, showing it to my kids. That will always be the king for me. Although now I'm seeing that it's rather sexist and its depiction of people of color is less than enlightened.

I have watched a few episodes of One Punch Man. That is a fun show.
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What ANIME are you watching? 20 May 2017 06:31 #248772

Have you watched Code Geass?

For me it's the best anime ever. At least right now. It's totally Japanese with its weirdness (unlike, say, Cowboy Bebop). School guys, robots, super powers... but the plot is totally gut wrenching. THe last few episode of the second season is like you go to school with a best friend and then the next day that best friend become Hitler. It's one of few sci-fi anime in which there's "realistic arms race", the pseudo-political stuff is interesting, and the twist... simply amazing.

The bonus point is that's is very easy to watch. It has nothing of that slow-boiled plot, long monologue, etc... in fact, the first few episode will make you think this is just run-of-the-mill robot anime with school, girls, and teen angst. Just don't be put off with the character design and happy-go-lucky atmosphere. It-is-truly-great.
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What ANIME are you watching? 20 May 2017 10:59 #248777

I like anime. But its hard to find engaging anime that truly satisfies.

But then again, I'm not the target demographic. The story lines have a huge cultural divide. Some of which I appreciate, others being entirely alien and indecipherable.

I started with starblazers (Yamamoto?) and robotech as a kid.
I always looked for either the weirder content or the more cogent story lines. Then weird stuff was always far more available like Cat Soup, Colorful, Gantz, Excel Saga, etc.

Rah Xephon was a nice take on neon genesis, Tower of Duraga is a very capable dungeons and dragons analogue, Last Exile was a neat take on steam punk...

Recent stuff like One Punch Man, Blame!, Ajin are good.
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What ANIME are you watching? 20 May 2017 16:38 #248786

Cat Soup is one of my favorites! I often lean toward the more oddball/dissociative/psychedelic anime since I generally seek out that type of content regardless of medium.

I do occasionally get drawn into a "slice of life" series if the characters are compelling and/or funny enough to bridge the cultural gap (e.g. Great Teacher Onizuka, Honey & Clover). Those are sort of a guilty pleasure for me, along the lines of a soap opera or telenovela. When I can't connect with a character, though, I bounce off of them pretty hard. For instance, I'm having a very difficult time with Bakemonogatari even though it presumably has the ingredients I'm looking for... it's like a longer FLCL but with all of the joy stripped out of it.
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What ANIME are you watching? 20 May 2017 23:26 #248795

ONE PUNCH MAN is awesome tv. Everyone go watch that. Subverts the genre in a lot of clever ways, but still revels in it. Great show.
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What ANIME are you watching? 21 May 2017 00:52 #248799

Having reread my Akira graphic novels recently, I kind a wish they would revisit it as a serial instead of the movie treatment. The movie just doesn't do it the proper justice.
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What ANIME are you watching? 21 May 2017 09:58 #248802

Because of this thread, I watched the first episodes of One Punch Man and Attack on Titan last night. Of the two, I think I'm more inclined to continue with Titan first. Is that wrong?

I did like how the art style would mix up in OPM though.
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What ANIME are you watching? 21 May 2017 10:28 #248803

I think I watched three or four episodes of AoT. It's just boring. I think the idea is neat, but man, it's such a wonky storyline that I couldn't get into it.
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What ANIME are you watching? 22 May 2017 07:22 #248827

In every 22 minute episode of Attack on Titan, about 12 minutes is a character gurning in horror. It does make almost no sense at all (and there are Youtube pundits who can break down everything wrong with it), but I found it watchable. It does string out the story for maximum episode count.

I really enjoyed Ghost in the Shell: Standalone Complex. It suffers from plot-driven technology like a lot of sci-fi seems to (in one episode, we can track someone anywhere in Tokyo with Gadget X, three episodes later it doesn't seem to exist), and the usual hand-waving of rules and laws in these kinds of shows about special forces groups*, but it's solid in its exploration of the impact of technology on identity and other issues. It does dive pretty deep into its own plot and mythology, to the point where there is an episode dedicated entirely to summarizing the evidence and debating theories about the Smiling Man incident.

Initial D might be my favourite anime, and I try to watch it annually. Unless you're in it for the dank memes, it does kind of require you to care what a "hachi roku" is, but I enjoy the narrative-driven laws of physics, where Ryosuke can explain how that three-episode downhill battle was won/lost before the cars lined up. Every time. God bless you, Ryosuke, and why did they melt your face for season 4? He was my drift-bae.

I think I watched one episode of Code Geass, but it didn't stick. I'm giving Black Lagoon a shot currently.

*I think the Fast and the Furious movies are anime in disguise.
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What ANIME are you watching? 22 May 2017 09:33 #248833

Big fan of Madoka Magica. I suggest skipping the 12 episode series and just watching the 3 movies. The first 2 movies are just the TV series edited into movies with improved animation so you aren't missing anything.
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What ANIME are you watching? 22 May 2017 12:49 #248850

Oh, anime...I was watching a TON of anime last year/year before last. A lot of the newer shows.

Attack on Titan has an AWESOME concept. It's really fucking WEIRD! The big, steaming, flayed giants...just totally nuts. I even really like the Expedition Corp and all of that, and the general world build up around it. But the characters and stories are just the usual teenage bullshit that I, at 41, can not relate to in any way.

PSYCHO_PASS was pretty cool. I watched a bit of that.

Can't decide if I like Parasyte or not. It's pretty goofy.

Berzerk is pretty awesome, the recent three movie series. It's ruthlessly violent, but it has some awesome medieval war stuff in it.

Death Note was way better than I expected, going back a bit. I actually really liked it even though it was pretty teenagey.

Aldnoah Zero was pretty decent, more of a Gundam sort of deal. Teenagey though.

Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron Blooded Orphans was good, but there again, teenage stuff. Killer mecha though, which makes up for a lot.

Knights of Sidonia, on Netflix only, is really good. I didn't watch the second season yet.

Yamato 2199 is FREAKING GREAT, especially if you fondly remember the classic Space Battleship Yamato/Star Blazers. A lot of the vintage Matsumoto designs, like the Cosmo Tigers and all that, were kept. Not the bellbottoms though.

Mushi-Shi is by far the best anime series I've seen in a long time though...it's very mature (which is rare in anime). It's sort of a supernatural detective thing, but it is incredibly sedate, relaxed and not action-oriented at all. The stories/mysteries are really well written- very compelling and with often quite heartbreaking/touching/profound resolutions. I bought a disc from an Amazon seller that turned out to be a bootleg of the entire series. I didn't complain. But I think it is all on Netflix now.

Kill La Kill was fucking stupid. Didn't like Gueran Lagann either

The old Patlabor movies are cool. Kind of cop movies, but with mecha.

Maybe one day I will be able to make through the entirety of Wings of Honneamise. I actually tried to watch it untranslated back in the early 1990s.

About Akira...I totally agree that it doesn't do the manga justice- but you are also talking about a piece of manga that is up there with Nausicaa in the running for best Manga of all time. That said, and even though the movie is kind of a mess...there is a lot in that movie that is just mind-blowingly good. Like the music and the editing, good grief. It also still looks incredible, not dated at all, mainly because it had an illustration style that was sort of outside the usual "Japanimation" of the time.

That is one of my favorite high school memories, seeing it for the first time...it was probably about 1991, we got a hold of the Akira VHS tape (which I had tried to special order at Suncoast for the kingly sum of $99.99 but it never came in). It was from this Kroger grocery store that for no apparent reason had like all of the anime available at the time in their rental section (so like...Bubblegum Crash and all of that). We watched it and after it was over my friend Rufus just said "well damn" and we all just busted out laughing.
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What ANIME are you watching? 22 May 2017 13:40 #248853

Akira is still great, no doubt. Still watchable despite many 'huh?!?' moments.

But all the times when you hear "Kaaaa-nuuhhh-duhhhhhh" screamed like a royal Mountie battle cry, is another instance when the plot could have been more fully fleshed out.

It would be difficult to accomplish, but considering all the effort/money being put into truly shit anime titles of absolutely no worth (seriously, finding good anime isn't easy, despite the market being flooded by all the dross), it could be accomplished. And likely win numerous accolades and awards outside of merely otaku circles. Make serious bank.

The time is long overdue for good writing to be utilized to match the creative artistic graphic efforts made in creating these shows.

Dune, for example, would be a perfect candidate to be made into an animated serial.
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What ANIME are you watching? 22 May 2017 14:03 #248857

I love Akira in both of its forms, and in general i watch the movie once a year. Yes, it has its slow moments but I love it.

Barnes - don't bother with the second season of Knights of Sidonia. Teenage bullshit to the extreme, I gave up quickly.

I also heartily second the recommendation of Mushi-shi. Top notch stuff, easily in the top 10 anime series I've ever seen.
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What ANIME are you watching? 22 May 2017 17:00 #248869

I purchase very little anime, but after watching the fansubs of Mushishi back in the mid-2000's, I picked up the slim box-set when it became available. It's one of my all time favorites. It sits on the shelf alongside all of the Hayao Miyazaki stuff, an old set of Cowboy Bebop, & Evangelion.

I haven't watched the second season yet but did download it awhile ago before bakabt went black. I think I'll start watching it in tandem with PSYCHO-PASS.
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