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Another week is upon us, which means another weekly thread. For those of you out there that prescribe to the three episode rule of thumb for shows, it is crunch time for shows to prove their worth. As always, please use this thread however you like, whether that be questions, comments, suggestions, etc. Some examples might be:

  • Who did it better, Frieren’s First Class Mage Exam or Harry Potter’s Tri-Wizard Tournament?
  • Is The Dangers in My Heart a cautionary tale about high cholesterol?
  • In Blue Exorcist, why doesn’t somebody cheer him up?

As always, remember to be mindful of spoilers. If you want to know more about how to handle spoilers in this community, check the guide here (also linked in the sidebar).

  • @SnowGator@lemm.ee
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    54 months ago

    Good week.

    • Wrapped up Helck S1. It was good. Didn’t end super strongly, but I was satisfied. Overall, it ended up way higher rated than I was expecting and really enjoyed it. It’s silly, but has a lot of heart, and the world is better thought out than I was expecting. I hope they make a S2!
    • Frieren still super good. It’s a shame the episodes are only 2 minutes long… or at least they feel that way…
    • Solo Leveling finally got to its premise. I’m all about goofy video game life stuff. Enjoying it a lot.
    • Apothecary Diaries - slowly catching up. I love the gravitas to everything. Maomao is a gem. I love the very very minimal fan service, considering how often brothels are a major part of the story.
    • Pluto - about halfway. I dunno, it’s good, but I also kinda find it boring. I want to like this more than I am. The way the plot is progressing makes it hard to cheer for anybody, or even feel like we’re (as standins for the protagonists) actively learning and doing anything. It feels so reactionary and passive. The world is cool and I like a lot of the characters… but every 15 minutes it’s like oh hey here’s brand new people that are super important and there’s no way you could’ve known any of this.
    • Still enjoying The Dangers in my Heart and Delicious in Dungeon a bunch. I’m definitely finishing both of these.
    • @zabadoh
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      44 months ago

      Frieren still super good. It’s a shame the episodes are only 2 minutes long…

      Hahaha I know, right?

    • @wjs018OPM
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      34 months ago

      I only have one more episode of Helck to go, but just have had a hard time finding the time/motivation to wrap it up. I think it struggled a bit through the middle of the season, but got a bit better towards the end. However, the beginning of the series was so fun that the rest of it just hasn’t been as engaging for me.

      I feel your pain on Frieren :(

  • @kikuri
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    44 months ago

    three episode rule of thumb for shows

    • Yubisaki to Renren has become my favourite show of the season.

    • I will probably drop Sengoku Youko and Metallic Rouge if they fail to impress me with the third episode. Idk about Mahou Shoujo ni Akogarete.

    • Dungeon Meshi paused for now.

    I will also be watching Urusei Yatsura and the shows continuing from the fall season (Sousou no Frieren, Kusuriya no Hitorigoto and Undead Unluck). I might try 7th Time Loop since it’s getting a lot of positive reception.

    Regarding finished series:

    • I completed Hoshikuzu Telepath and it was one of the most 6/10 anime I’ve ever watched. It’s not bad, but there are a lot of better CGDCT anime.

    • I’m loving Turn A Gundam, I’m at episode 18 right now.

    • I bought the Taiho Shichauzo manga!

    • @wjs018OPM
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      24 months ago

      Yubisaki to Renren

      I am going to have to check this one out. I have only heard good things since this season started and I am a sucker for a good romance anime. Hokkaido Gals just didn’t do it for me this season.

      Metallic Rouge

      I agree with the sentiment here. This is one I want to love so badly because I love the aesthetic, vibe, OST, everything about it, but just have not connected with the story yet. The first two episodes felt completely narratively disconnected from one another, like they were telling two different stories entirely.

      Turn A Gundam

      I hear people praise different Gundam series often, but as somebody that hasn’t really watched any Gundam other than random episodes of Gundam Wing on Toonami years ago, I have no idea where to start. Just looking up this series on AniList, you are presented with a bunch of different relations to the greater Gundam-verse:

      It feels intimidating to break into.

      • @kikuri
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        4 months ago

        It feels intimidating to break into.

        I wanted to get into Gundam for years and always put it off for that reason. Suisei no Majo was my entry because it is completely detached from the other timelines/universes and it was airing weekly. The first half is very good, but unfortunately I cannot recommend it because it falls off a cliff in the last episodes.

        Turn A probably isn’t the best choice as a second series, but I’m at episode 20 and understood 99.99% of the plot. Afaik it isn’t actually connected to the other universes, but is like the convergence of all timelines thousands of years into the future.

        I will complete Turn A and proceed with the UC route following the r/anime wiki guide.

        • @zabadoh
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          4 months ago

          The quickest and easiest way would be the original 3 Gundam compilation movies that summarize the first TV series.

          Unfortunately all 3 movies are a bit long at 2h15-2h20 each, so get comfortable and don’t be afraid to take breaks.

          You’ll get introduced to the universe of Sides, the Gundam mechs, home carrier White Base, the kids and the Haro mascot robot, the Zion Empire and their distinctive mechs, and the masked villain ace pilot Char Aznable from whom all other masked villain ace pilots flow.

          A quick look on nyaa says they’re titiled “Mobile Suit Gundam 0079” or “Kidou Senshi Gundam”

          I feel that Z and ZZ are optional.

          Maybe the Char’s Counterattack movie if you want to see how far the universe and mechs developed under Z and ZZ.

          Everything else is just pretty much riffing from the mech designs and characters from the original series.

          The more years pass, the less relation each new Gundam series has to the original, I feel.

          That’s not a bad thing, as beating this dead horse drops all that model kit money for Sunrise/Bandai, which means we get more anime.

          I’m honestly shocked that they haven’t done an updated reboot of the original series like LoGH/DNT.

          • @kikuri
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            34 months ago

            Thanks for the info! I’ll save your comment for future reference

        • molave
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          24 months ago

          SEED is also detached and an easy entry point to Gundam.

  • @Essence_of_Meh@lemmy.world
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    44 months ago

    The only ongoing series I’m keeping up with is Frieren - not much to write about this one. It’s good and nicely improves on the source material.

    On the other hand, I promised myself to try thin out my backlog a bit and decided to start with El Cazador de la Bruja - it’s a story about a girl with special powers traveling through Mexico with a bounty hounter.

    It’s a bit rough and feels low budget at times but it’s not bad. There’s some action (with anime understanding of guns), kind of a boring villain (at least for now) and writing varying between medicore to pretty alright. There’s also plenty of funny (and fun) scenes, some nice backgrounds and an excellent soundtrack by Yuki Kaijura. Pretty decent watch so far.

    I have some ideas where the story might go but I’m also still early into the show (episode 6 out of 26) so we’ll see how things go. I don’t expect my opinion change much unless there are some crazy swerves before the end honestly.

    Oh, ED has a cat with a sniper rifle in it. Still waiting for it to show up in an episode - it has to, right? ED wouldn’t lie like that.

    • @wjs018OPM
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      34 months ago

      I just looked up the OP and ED for this show and you weren’t kidding. Through watching both of them there is just a really quick scene of a cat looking through the scope of a sniper rifle. No idea why, the cat doesn’t show up anywhere else, and only people are ever portrayed as handling weapons otherwise. For your sake, I hope that the ED isn’t lying, because a random sniper cat in a show that is otherwise played straight would be hilarious.

      I was confused that I hadn’t heard of this show before, but then I saw it came out in 2007. I have been learning recently from discussions in these threads that the late 2000’s were a bit of a blind spot for me anime-wise. I was really busy with grad school and had just started dating my now wife at that time and I guess just didn’t really keep up with it as much.

      • @Essence_of_Meh@lemmy.world
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        24 months ago

        I think it’s a mostly forgotten show in general - it’s neither an amazing hidden gem nor a complete train wreck. There are some good things about it but nothing that would make it a “must watch” so far. The only reason I found out about it was a discussion about less known anime soundtracks.

        I still hope for the sniper cat though, there’s plenty of episodes left for that.

  • @wjs018OPM
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    44 months ago

    This week, instead of talking about seasonal shows I am watching, I wanted to get a bit of a rant off my chest about a show from last year, the Kenshin remake. Be forewarned, as rants go, this is pretty ranty.

    I finished watching the first season together with my wife recently. For context, we have both watched the previous show and she has read the manga in the past. Overall, I liked seeing the characters again, but I do think that the story drags. The story structure gets repetitive with a new bad guy showing up and wanting to challenge Kenshin every couple episodes to kick off another mini arc. I feel like several of these rotating bad guys just don’t really have any narrative importance to the overall story, so having such a slow pace through them just causes the whole show to drag. Alright, next three paragraphs will be behind a spoiler tag, so be warned.


    Kenshin (2023) Season 1 Spoilers

    In my view, there are four main things that need to happen in Kenshin’s story before moving on to the Shishio arc (a future season 2). First, the initial confrontation with the fake battosai causing him to decide to stay with Kaoru. Second, episodes introducing Yahiko and Sanosuke and their joining the party. Third, the arc to rescue Megumi which leads to a conflict with the oniwabanshu and lingering bad blood with Aoshi (a future very important character). Finally, the introduction of Saito and his vetting of Kenshin as a prelude to the Shishio arc.

    All the other villains that show up beyond these just feel like a bit of a waste of time. First, there was Jine (episodes 6-7), then Raijuta (episodes 15-17), Tsunan (episodes 18-19), and finally some OVA-feeling flashback episodes (episodes 20-21). That means 9/24 episodes really just don’t propel the main story along. I can’t remember how many of these were adapted in the original series, but watching it this time was a slog. I also think this was made worse because a huge contiguous block of episodes (15-21) fall into this category, rather than being interspersed more evenly through the show.

    The most egregious example of this in my opinion is the flashback episodes (20-21) that were pulled from the Rurouni Kenshin: Restoration manga, published in 2012. It just feels like they wanted to fit the story setting up the Shishio arc into 24 episodes, came up 2 episodes short, so decided to pull some other content in to make up the shortfall.


    Look, I love Kenshin. It holds a warm place in my heart as one of the formative anime in my journey into this hobby. However, I haven’t really been able to connect with this series the way I had with the first series. Part of that is down to the adaptation choices I ranted about above, but certainly no small part of that is how much I have changed in the past 28(!) years since the first series came out. As a middle-aged working adult, I just don’t have as much time or patience to sit through shows like this that don’t keep the story moving.

    I also think I wouldn’t find the pacing issues as frustrating if there wasn’t an absolutely excellent live-action adaptation that has come out in the intervening years as well. The story changes they made in the live action movies really trimmed the narrative fat and paired a quick moving story with probably the best live-action swordfighting choreography I have seen in a long time. Seriously, the live-action movies are excellent and worth a watch for fans and non-fans alike.

    Anyway, rant over. I expect that my opinion on this series might not be widely shared among the fanbase, but I am fine with that. The other adaptations and the original manga still exist. I will probably continue with the second season when it comes out because the Shishio arc is my favorite part of the story (Misao is my wife’s favorite character and mine is Hiko Seijuro).

    • @zabadoh
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      24 months ago

      I feel the same about the Urusei Yatsura remake.

      I loved the show back then, but we were different people and we watched things differently back then too:

      15-25 teens and young adults, huddled around glowing CRT TVs in dark rooms, watching whichever precious grainy 4th gen unsubtitled VHS shows that we could get our hands on, pooling our collective consciousness to divine anything entertaining from our limited Japanese and the frantic visuals, sharing our infectious enthusiasm.

      Now everything’s instantly available online with decent subtitles, and we’re alone in our homes, with whatever community we can muster online.

      • @wjs018OPM
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        4 months ago

        Yeah, the internet has completely changed and enabled anime to become what it is today (in the US anyway, which is where my experience is). I wrote last week about some of the challenges I faced in the past to procure/watch anime growing up. The difference is pretty remarkable.

  • e0qdk
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    34 months ago

    I had somewhat limited time this past week, but wanted to keep working through my backlog of unfinished shows, so I pulled up the short (6 episode) series Looking Up At The Half-Moon and watched that. I think I dropped this after episode 2 the first time I tried it, but finished it this time.

    The show is a hospital drama + romance, which seems unusual for anime. I don’t think I’ve watched any other anime set almost entirely in a hospital before – scenes, yes, but not the whole show. I’m not generally into medical drama so I haven’t really gone looking though; this is one I went into blind originally.

    Guess which novel shows up again! Yup, it’s Night on the Galactic Railroad. I feel like I’m seeing this book everywhere now, and this show quotes from it directly; one of the characters has pretty much memorized it. Something I noticed from the quotes is that one of the characters (in the novel) is named Campanella – which should ring bells for anyone who’s played the Trails series… No idea if there’s actually a connection there, but I thought it was interesting.

    The show strained my suspension of disbelief with how a number of characters acted, but did some things I found interesting as well. The doctor’s characterization did not go in quite the direction I expected, and there were a number of other surprises throughout. Episode 5 in particularly really went somewhere I wasn’t expecting. I kind of feel like I should write more about that… but it would all be spoilers.

    • @wjs018OPM
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      24 months ago

      You bring up a good point I hadn’t really thought about before, that the medical drama genre isn’t as represented in anime as it is in Western media. There are many examples that I can think of from US television (House, ER, Grey’s Anatomy, etc.), and I haven’t even watched any of those shows. However, I would really have to go searching to try to find them in anime form. Maybe games? I can think of the Trauma Center series of games which are medical drama visual novels. Interesting observation!

      In any case, I tend not to watch medical shows because it is a bit too close to what I do professionally, and my suspension of disbelief is pretty easily stretched beyond the breaking point when it is in a field I actually know a lot about. It really makes me think that other genres must also really stretch reality quite a bit, but I just don’t know enough to know any better. Next thing I know, you are going to tell me that soccer isn’t played like it is in Blue Lock.

      • @nyan@lemmy.cafe
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        4 months ago

        The classic anime medical drama is Tezuka’s Black Jack (there have been multiple anime adaptations of the manga over the years, the last one being the TV series Black Jack 21, from 2006). Other than that, there’s Ray (also airing in 2006), some individual episodes of Monster, and maybe the currently airing Surgeon Elise, depending on the direction it goes in? There was a period where you didn’t see medical dramas much on Western TV either, and maybe Japan is going through a similar time. (Now I feel old. 😭 )

        • @wjs018OPM
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          4 months ago

          Ah! More shows from the mid-late 2000’s that I am not really familiar with. I really should go back to those years and pick up some of them to fill in my lapse of knowledge. Engaging in conversations in this community has really shown me that I just wasn’t really keeping up with releasing shows during that time period.

          • @nyan@lemmy.cafe
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            24 months ago

            For what it’s worth, Ray isn’t really worth going back for, or at least it didn’t make enough of an impression for me to remember much except the title.

            Some of the Black Jack material is worth watching, but you can dip into it at almost any point from the 1990s OAVs on and make some sense of it, since it’s fairly episodic. The characters’ backstories are interesting, but rarely necessary for understanding the plot. (There’s also Young Black Jack, a more recent series—Wiki gives a 2015 airdate—that I forgot about initially which traces part of the title character’s origin story.)

            Monster is worth watching on its own merits, if you haven’t seen it already (it was early 2000s, if I recall correctly, so outside your timeframe), but only the first few episodes could be considered medical drama. After that, it proceeds in quite a different direction.

  • molave
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    4 months ago

    To summarize Hokkaido Gals Are Super Adorable E3: “Ski ga kirei, desu ne?”

  • @zabadoh
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    4 months ago

    Okay, so it’s week 4, we have a pretty good handle on what this season’s shows are like, so it’s time to drop and add them:

    Keep (in no particular order):

    • Sousou no Freiren (obviously)

    • Solo Leveling

    • Sasaki to Pii-chan

    • Sokushi Cheat

    • Classroom of the Elite

    • Wrong Way To Use Healing Magic

    • Unwanted Undead Adventurer

    • Brave Bang Bravern

    • Dungeon Meshi

    • Gushing Over Magic Girls

    • Tis Time For Torture, Princess

    • Hidden Boss Level 99

    • Mr. Villain’s Day Off

    • Hokkaido Gals Are Adorable

    Drop(ped):

    • Ishura

    • Bucchigiri

    • Saikyou Tank

    • Pon No Michi

    • Metallic Rouge

    • Majo to Yayuu

    • Ragna Crimson

    Add, maybe if I have time:

    • Snack Basue

    • Yubisaki to Renren

    That’s still an awful lot of shows that I’m following already, so some of the weaker or gimmicky ones might have to go, like Sokushi Cheat, Wrong Way, Unwanted Undead, Brave Bang Bravern, Gushing, Tis Time, Hidden Boss, Hokkaido Gals.