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Spring 2007 Survival: Group 3 – Week 1

April 8, 2007

Ahh…I’m really sorry about not doing this sooner. Well, I finished up with Group 3 finally so if you wanted to see my take on Shining Tears, Kamichama, or sola then now’s your chance. I’m just glad that I’ve finally finished this one up.
Alright, I also want you readers to check out the new pages that have popped up on the sidebar. These puppies are going to become essential to the life of Ask Likkun, especially the one labeled “Assist Ask Likkun…” for obvious reasons. This concerns things relating to helping me write article, to how you can help me get more active readers. If you could check these out, then I’d be very happy. And there’s also the matter of my updated Spring Schedule now. It should be changing as I see more series and review more, so feel free to keep an eye on that too.

I think I decided on a new rule due to Hitohira. In the case where a series earns three CONSECUTIVE saves, then they’ll be joining my three other series so far on the permanent list. I’m fairly sure no normal show can earn three saves in a row with my judgement. And I am trying to judge shows accordingly, thank you very much.

Hitohira

Awards: PAAANCAKES, Best of the Group, Addiction

Week 1: Save
Week 2: Save

So, it seems like Episode 1 may have not been the biggest fluke after all. Episode 2 of Hitohira may not have been as good, but it sure as hell better then a lot of series. Usually there’s a HUGE drop in quality after the first episode but Hitohira didn’t see so much of it. And Mugi’s little daydream about pancakes is one of my new favorite scenes in any anime. Frankly, I saw a bit of myself in doing similar bouts of dozing off like an idiot, though mine are never quite as tasty. It may not be the best of the group in reality, but I really enjoyed this episode a lot. And it’s sad that it was the one thing I was looking forward to seeing and I’m doing the same for Episode 3. If it pulls off a similar stunt next week then I’m sure it’ll still get a save. There was nothing to really complain about aside from it being more laid back then the first episode and that’s not really a bad thing.

Nagasarete Airantou

Awards: Horny Females, Deserted Island, Classic Harem

Week 1: Sadly…Save
I’ve been known to bash harem series…a lot actually. I have nothing against them really but they all seem FAR too similar after awhile. And they all tend to have the same stereotypical girls in each one. But this series probably takes the cake in terms of keeping things classic. Despite that, it has an excuse (though pretty lame) reasoning behind it’s fanservice. Rather then just throwing girls on the guy because they feel like it, Nagasarete Airantou creates a bit of a decent scenario. They instead send a boy to an island where NO men exist. Because of that, it’s obvious that all the girls are not only stupid but horny. In this sense, they openly throw their naked bodies at him and all wish to win his heart over. Not only that, but all the cliche stereotypes are covered quite thoroughly. Now a decent excuse alone sounds like a bad idea to save something…but there is more reason behind my madness. One other reason, is the artwork. The girls aren’t made for huge realistic fanservice (more like loli fanservice if you ask me) but the drawings are more cute then anything. They’re vibrant and give a more relaxed feel to the whole thing. Rather then push on drama, it seems like it’ll be a more kicked back and humorous trip. The style they did the ending is pretty cute too, so I suggest you check it out if you can. Last but not least, there’s the CV cast of the series. Frankly, there’s too many good voices in this to pass up which makes the entire trip worthwhile

Romeo x Juliet

Awards: Promising Series, Good Concept, Classic Alterations

Week 1: Save
I was really surprised when I saw Romeo x Juliet this week. I went in pretty skeptical, and I wasn’t too big on them following the plot of the series. Much to my surprise, it feels like very little may stay the same. On account that most of the Capulets were killed off in the beginning, leaving Juliet to fend for herself in the land of the Montagues. DIDN’T SEE THAT ONE COMING. With this, I was slightly more drawn into the plot. With promising action sequences, good opening and ending themes, good music in general, and all the essentials of a first episode this series deserved the save it received. Oh and Benvolio seems pretty gay as of yet. Still makes me feel bad that I had to be him in the play. Hopefully he ends up kicking some ass like I said in the beginning.

Kishin Taisen Gigantic Formula

Awards: Mechagasm, Best Action, HUGE FUCKING EYES, Mecha Design

Week 1: Neutral
Well, well. Some interesting twists and turns in Gigantic Formula. On one end, we have the strange character designs. While the characters themselves are fine, the huge eyes scare the heck out of me. It’s not so bad…I’m getting used to it kind of but it’s still a little awkward. The old style of “circle blushing” where a huge red circle appears on their cheeks it’s pretty funny to see return as well. Getting past that, the plot seems to resemble something of G Gundam where each country possesses their own mecha. ALL OF WHICH KICK FUCKING ASS. The action and mecha are the things that keep this show intense and frankly, I would have given it a save if the characters hadn’t scared me so much. The action sequence at the end totally beat every mecha sequence I think I’ve seen this week. Heroic Age was pretty good, but the showdown between the two mechs was what I really wanted to see. If all the action sequences are as well animated, then I’ll have no problem watching more of this. Frankly, this was the one mecha series I was looking forward to seeing.

Darker than BLACK-Kuro no Keiyakusha-

Awards: Action Heavy, Good Plot, Interesting Characters

Week 1: Save
Darker than Black was simply supposed to fill the Code Geass time slot. I had no idea whether I would really enjoy it or not…but I did, quite a lot as well. Darker than Black has appeared to have one of the most intriguing plots so far to me. Not only that but the main character got hit by A TRAIN and still survived. The fact the girl didn’t freak out when he came back is somehow ridiculous…but awesome. The series did a decent job of showing some real action in the beginning while showing some more intense chases later on. The main character is highly likeable and his awkward apperances always seem to crack me up (the guy comes out of nowhere, even though it’s more stalker than anything else). But this series looks like it’ll be pretty impressive, almost like some supernatural take on Batman.

Kamichama Karin

Awards: Expected Failure, Horribly Annoying Female Lead, Stereotypical Male Lead, Bright Vibrant Colors

Week 1: Strike x100
Not suprisingly, I find myself ready to mock this show like the horrible person I am. But since I’m not in the mood, I’ll keep it short. This series is such stereotypcial mahou shoujo that I almost wanted to smack myself in the face. Frankly, I hadn’t seen much of this since I had viewed Tokyo Mew Mew. The female is sickly annoying, as is the male lead she falls in love with (who we obviously know will help her in later on whether she knows it or not). As you can tell, I’m not too fond of series like this so much unless there’s a hook for me. Karin doesn’t have that hook so I wouldn’t be suprised to see this one go down fast.

sola

Awards: Suprise Hit, Interesting Characters, Addictive Plot, Unexpected Events

Week 1: Save
I came into sola pretty skeptical, since I hadn’t heard squat about it. Frankly, I thought it would be a simple romance drama. Little did I know all the little character twists, turns, loop the loops and other things that would follow. The character in this serious seem to be letting off a lot less then they actually know about themselves. But whatever, this series has me really interested in seeing more and with the clean animation and great music, I think it’ll be worth the trip.

Shining Tears X Wind

Awards: Good Adaption, Interesting CV Cast

Week 1: Neutral
Shining Tears is another action series for me that may or may not be dropped. Frankly, I have a lot of heavy action series right now, so it’ll all depend on how things unfold the next week and so on. It’s not a bad series but it’s also not too impressive as of yet. The action was nice and the plot seems to be running smoothly but there’s just as many action series up for the bid right now. So this will definitely be on the backburner until things progress further.

Conclusion
Group Three was a huge shocker to me. I thought it would squeeze by due to Hitohira, but the series in it truly showed some impressive first episodes. The fact I handed out so many saves either proves I was leniant, or these series are pretty good. After watching the remaining series, I see they add one of each so far. sola was suprisingly fascinating, Karin was horrendous, and Shining Tears was like what I had seen on Tuesday. So we’ll see what happens in the end, if Karin gets kicked off and Shining Tears as well, then we’ll have a rather perfect looking week. That or the other series will begin to bomb or something, but I like to stay positive.

Tommorow, we get to start ALL OVER again. Oh boy. Actually this means the apperance of my last anticipated series as well, Lucky Star. Then more Hayate no Gotoku!, Nanoha Strikers, and Seto no Hanayome. The big series that I love may be on Sundays but after this, I may admit that Wednesdays and Thursdays will be my surprising hits.

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