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A new Monday means it is a new general discussion thread. We are at or near the halfway point of the season for most of the winter shows. I plan on dedicating next week’s thread to a midterm report of sorts, so look forward to it! In the meantime, please use this thread to talk about what you have watched recently, any questions you might have, recommendations, or whatever else strikes your fancy. Like usual, a couple examples:

  • Are there any shows with more suggestive eyecatches than Bravern?
  • Is Metallic Rouge some elaborate experiment to see how long an audience will watch pretty nonsense?
  • Is Kensuke from Dungeon Meshi basically a Pokemon that Laios uses to fight?

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).

  • @wjs018OPM
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    114 months ago

    Before getting to the meat of the content, I wanted to bring people’s attention to the newly formed !lightnovels@ani.social community. @NineSwords@ani.social has run this communtiy excellently for a while now over on the ml instance. They are provisionally starting up the community here due to the defederation issues. So, if you want to learn more about where your anime come from, check it out. With that, let’s get to the meat of my post this week…

    I wanted to give a little bit of a meta update this week rather than talk about shows. There are a couple things that I have been working on or thinking about for the community going forward that I wanted to keep people here in the loop. It isn’t something so important or finalized as to devote a whole thread to though, so I have compiled them here instead.

    Episode Discussion Threads

    I have gotten some feedback that episode discussion threads would be better separated to a different community because some users just want the news/general discussion rather than all the seasonal episodes, like it was prior to the Great Shinobu Outage™ of 2024. So, I wanted to gather some feedback from people here that care enough to read this far. I am not making any decisions until next season at the earliest, this is just to help test the waters of community opinion informally.

    • Do you want to keep episode discussions in this community or move them elsewhere like before this season?
    • If we keep episode discussions in this community, would you want a bot to automate their creation or keep them user generated?

    I won’t give too much of my opinion on these questions so as to not color the feedback. One thing I will say is that, no matter what outcome happens, I am not going to keep a manually updated table of the episode discussion threads again. It has been a lot of work to keep the thread up to date (and I haven’t bothered to keep the shinobu posts up to date). I am committing to finishing up this season, but…never again.

    Comment Bot

    I had a bit of a discussion the other day about how to possibly implement a bot that can be summoned in comment threads to provide links for a series. I have written basically zero code for this so far, but I think it is technically possible to do if the community would find it helpful. Basically the idea would be:

    1. You @mention the bot in your comment and the search term for the series you want links for. Something like:

    @bot-chan@ani.social “Frieren”

    1. The bot then replies with a set of links and info for the show. Initially, this would be pulled from the AniList api. So, for the example of “Frieren” it would be something like this:

    Sousou no Frieren • Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End

    Links

    Is this something that the community would find useful or want? I haven’t really poked around the AniList api too much, but I think things like a synopsis would also be possible to include, as well as things like a banner or cover image for the series. If you want to see an example of this on reddit, you can look at /u/Roboragi.

    Community Wiki

    I know that many of us were/are probably visitors to the /r/anime community on reddit. One of the great resources they have there is the wiki. Things like recommendation pages, watch order pages, and discussion thread index pages have all been things I have used in the past. Is there interest in a wiki being made for this community?

    I have a couple wikis that I host for my personal and D&D group use, but wouldn’t have too much trouble spinning one up for this community. If so, I plan to make use of the git backend to wiki.js to enable anybody to contribute through github pull requests if they are able. That would also enable some automation to keep things like episode discussion index pages up to date through incorporating that into a bot.

    • @SnowGator@lemm.ee
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      94 months ago

      I’d prefer episode discussion here. I love seeing discussions about an episode I just finished. And it seems like this season we’re seeing a bit more activity? To me, this is the most important content I come here for. Perhaps it’d be okay to be separated, but it hardly feels spammy if it’s only for popular shows that most/many people are watching.

      Comment bot seems not worth the effort compared to a google search.

      Didn’t even know about the old Wiki. I just google that stuff.

      • @zabadoh
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        23 months ago

        Same here I ddin’t even know /r/anime had a wiki, but good to know…

    • Endmaker
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      4 months ago

      Do you want to keep episode discussions in this community or move them elsewhere like before this season?

      Keep them in this community; I’d rather all anime-related content be in one place.

      If we keep episode discussions in this community, would you want a bot to automate their creation or keep them user generated?

      Keep them user generated. Bot-created posts are too spammy, which is why I avoid the episode discussions community.

      a bot that can be summoned in comment threads to provide links for a series
      Is this something that the community would find useful or want?

      Personally I won’t find it useful, because I can simply search for the series in AniList.

      Is there interest in a wiki being made for this community?

      Yes. Documentation (if kept simple) has always been useful (to me at least).

    • @zabadoh
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      3 months ago

      Re: Wiki

      1. It doesn’t hurt to explicitly state community rules.

      2. OTOH, I don’t think we’re large enough and have deep enough user base with enough collective knowledge to justify something like a watch order wiki that won’t duplicate what is published elsewhere.

      • @wjs018OPM
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        23 months ago

        Yeah, I agree about the watch order wiki. I don’t think we have any hope or would find much value out of reproducing what exists elsewhere. One area I think we might be able to improve on what exists in /r/anime’s wiki is the recommendations. Their recommendations page is frankly, so large and full of so many titles that it stops being very helpful, especially for newcomers to anime. I think some community curation on a recommendation list or a beginner’s guide would be worthwhile.

    • @zabadoh
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      33 months ago

      You know, I would love to keep some of the episode discussions here, and I’m having too much fun selecting a screenshot for the episode discussion posts that I make.

      BUT Not all shows need to have a episode discussion post, e.g. shows that don’t appeal to this /c, such as Pokemon, Sazae-san, or Pon No Michi, and we don’t have the volume of original content to quickly push those down to maintain relevant content at the top of the /c

      I would also love to have screenshots for the bot-created discussion threads, but of course the bot won’t do that for us, so it falls to the mods, which adds to their already heavy workload.

    • @zabadoh
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      3 months ago

      So after cooking in my brain overnight, here’s my proposal:

      Allow users to post links to discussion threads like I have been doing for Dungeon Meshi and Freiren.

      As a mod, you might be able to lock the posts to prevent comments, but this is more work for you and so far my results have been good, and users have been following the links to other /C’s for discussion.

      1. This allows users to demonstrate enthusiasm for shows we have been watching and enjoying.

      I haven’t tried it yet, but I think we should be able to add a screenshot for such “Link to episode discussion” posts

      1. This cuts down on the Pokemon, Sazae-san, Pon No Michi problem of empty posts for unpopular or unwatched shows.

      2a) Conversely, the “link to discussion” posts serve as a reminder of what episodes dropped that day, and are considered by someone to be worth watching.

      2b) There’s added incentive for user investment in this /c in the race to make the episode discussion link.

      1. I feel gratified by the upvotes for my “Link to episode discussion” posts, even though our users have been well behaved, and no comments have been posted in the link threads. Those valuable Interwebs points…

      2. I have found that the best episode discussion does not always happen in !episode_discussion@ani.social

      This is the case of Dungeon Meshi, where the episode posts in !dungeonmeshi@ani.social have been banging!

      But I feel Dungeon Meshi the rare case where the show is good enough and has its own good /c

      1. There is a downside in that we won’t have a one stop shop to see if we have new comments in the episode discussions. I think this could be a big one.

      2. I propose that !episode_discussions have a liberal mod addition policy, to allow mods to add screenshots to shinobu-generated threads.

      Can a mod create a new mod with restrictions, such as to only allow adding images/screenshots to the OP?

      This is in order to bring some color to the otherwise bland looking threads.

      • @wjs018OPM
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        23 months ago

        All of this (and the other comments in this thread) have been valuable feedback. I am thinking about all of this and swirling it around in my brain. I have decided a couple guidelines based on the feedback so far:

        • I think bringing discussion posts into this community is for the best. We have enough activity in this community now that, with the modest number of shows people have been actively engaging with, it doesn’t drown out the other content.
        • I want to keep users in the loop, but would like to have some level of automation to better track and update things like the Thread Guide.

        I am thinking about the best balance to strike with this. Either something like a bot takes over posting regularly after user-made threads generate some interest, or perhaps the bot doesn’t make any posts and instead just monitors posts made by users. This second option would need me to enact some formatting rules on the posts to make sure that threads could be picked up by the bot.

        I also like the screenshots that have been used for discussion threads recently. Neither mods or instance admins are able to edit post information one-sidedly, so only the original poster is able to edit the link to be a screenshot. So, if we end up with bot-created posts, I have worked on making sure some art is included. For example, something like the cover image or banner image for a show, both of which are accessible via the AniList api.

        I appreciate the ideas and feedback people have had so far. Still lots of thinking to do about this. I have been working on some code for a while now, but it has changed a lot as my thoughts on what I want as an end product change.

        • @1Fuji2Taka3Nasubi@lemmy.zip
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          23 months ago

          I still think keeping episode discussion separate is better, and I like zabadoh’s suggestion to let people make link posts from here to the threads. It will reduce the clutter to 0-reply threads here.

          But my main concern is having timely discussion posts. I don’t always watch episodes immediately, but when I do, sometimes I find that no discussion thread is created yet, and I don’t feel like making a new post, looking up all the old posts to link to, properly format it etc. so I just leave and come back in a few days and comment if I still remember to (and still remember what I wanted to say). Call me lazy but however small a barrier you think it is, it is there and I think getting Shinobu repaired will greatly enhance the experience here.

          To reiterate, making properly formatted posts with links to previous episodes, is something that can and should be done automatically by bots. To have users manually do it creates a barrier. Ideally either a bot should create posts for every show of the season as soon as an episode is broadcasted in case someone wants to talk about it, or there should be a way to request a bot to create episode discussion posts, to avoid duplicates and/or wrongly formatted posts.

          • @wjs018OPM
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            13 months ago

            Thanks, this is great feedback. I completely appreciate the issues you raise about timeliness and the barrier to creating posts.

            As I have been getting more feedback, both in this thread and in PMs, I have been really torn on the issue of separating threads to a separate community. I think that the two solutions I am kicking around right now are to either:

            1. Separate discussions back to a separate community and be either bot or user created. Not sure yet the details here, but it would let people that don’t want to see discussion threads to stay subbed to this community without clogging up their feed with seasonal threads.
            2. Keep discussions in this community, but only allow discussion threads to be posted by a single bot account. This lets users just block that user or all bots and they don’t see the threads. Meanwhile, people that are interested in the discussion threads will see them.

            A key part of this is that I have an upgraded version of shinobu that I have been working on and is pretty much ready to implement (it’s been working well on a test instance I host). I am planning on letting this season run as-is, but plan to put the upgraded bot into use by next season in some form. Some key features I have tried to improve on over the current shinobu:

            • It uses the AniList api to know exactly when a show airs. So, it will be much more reliable and prompt when it comes to timing of discussion thread posts (no more shows that just can’t be found or are found days/weeks later randomly).
            • It can keep track of the engagement with previous episodes. So, if a show isn’t generating user engagement (upvotes/comments), it can stop posting threads for the show. I need to think of a process by which a show can be re-enabled, but this should help dramatically cut down the number of threads that languish with 0 comments.
            • (Not fully implemented yet) A summary post that can be pinned to the community that has all the most recent discussion threads that have been made. This lets users go to one post and scan the list of shows and pick out the one they are looking for.

            Another idea I had recently after this round of feedback was having a bot that parses any newly user-created threads to match it to a show/episode # to create a comment in that thread with the show information and past discussion links. That takes the burden off the post creator to keep track of all that. They would just need to follow some simple post title/body formatting so that the bot can parse it. It would basically be that the post title needs to have Episode # and then the AniList link to the show would need to be in the post body. That’s it. The bot would make a comment that has all the past comment threads for the show as well as things like relevant links, alternative names, etc.

            • @1Fuji2Taka3Nasubi@lemmy.zip
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              3 months ago

              How about this idea for the bot:

              1. x weeks before a new season, post a list of shows and have people vote on shows they’ll watch.
              2. every show that gets >1 vote will have discussion thread created by the bot weekly.
              3. bot will stop creating threads for shows that have no engagement for y consecutive weeks.
              4. have some way to restart shows after they are suspended (e.g. have user PM the bot with some command)
              5. when shows are started mid-season or restarted, the first thread created will be discussion for all previously omitted episodes, like this:

              For shows voted on:

              • First 4 weeks, bot creates discussion threads for ep.1, 2, 3, 4
              • bot stop due to no engagement
              • somebody requests restart when ep 7 aired
              • bot creates one discussion thread for ep. 5-7
              • next week, bot creates discussion thread for ep. 8

              For shows with no vote initially:

              • First 3 weeks, no discussion thread
              • somebody requests show when ep 4 aired
              • bot creates one discussion thread for ep 1-4
              • next week, bot creates discussion thread for ep. 5

              This is so we don’t have several low-traffic threads (in the first example ep 5, 6, 7 threads when only 1 person requested, probably to talk about ep 7) created at the same time, but still have a place to discuss every episode when people pick up a show mid-season.

            • @1Fuji2Taka3Nasubi@lemmy.zip
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              23 months ago

              Hmm, putting it very narrowly, I’m happy if I come here and there is a discussion thread for the episode I want to talk about ready.

              Going from there, my thinking is, if we want to grow the community, having a discussion thread ready for every episode for every show of the season, will be able to accommodate every potential new person like “me”.

              However, a season can have 40 shows or more, that means 40+ posts per week, and for the current community size perhaps 1/3 to 1/2 of them will have no engagement an clutter up this community.

              I think the clutter wouldn’t bother me but I can see it might make the community look less attractive.

              I said I prefer a separate episode discussions community because I thought it is one solution to the clutter, but on second thoughts I don’t feel too strongly about this.

              Another solution you seem to be considering is simply not have a discussion thread if nobody wants it, which would be effective in reducing clutter, but as you know the hard part is how do you tell.

              No matter what you decide, just want you to know your work is appreciated.

    • @ludrol@bookwormstory.social
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      4 months ago

      I remember that there was a bot on reddit with a bunch of good aliases that linked to the series on anime list sites.

      Someone could fork it and modify it to work with lemmy

      https://github.com/Nihilate/Roboragi

      I would be interested in a wiki for general purpose recommendations

      The bot is defenietely beneficial but I don’t know where to post disscussion threads

      • @wjs018OPM
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        24 months ago

        Forking roboragi is not a bad idea. I am going to have to take a look through the code, but it could be as easy as replacing PRAW with pythorhead so that it listens to/posts to lemmy instead of reddit.

        As for discussion threads, right now (and for the rest of this season), you just create a thread in this community. The only rules are:

        1. That you make the title clear which show/episode you are talking about
        2. It isn’t for a show that shinobu is still making posts for in !episode_discussion@ani.social (things that are continuing from last year)

        That’s it really. When I see the discussion post in this community, I will add it to the giant table of winter season discussion threads.

        • @TokyoCaramel
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          33 months ago

          Oh so !episode_discussion@ani.social is getting phased out from the sound of it. I’m out of the loop and was curious how that community fit into the picture, this cleared it up, assuming I interpreted correctly.

          • @wjs018OPM
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            33 months ago

            Yeah, I think it is time. There is a bit of history I could go into about episode discussion threads, but I don’t really have a lot of time today. However, that community was initially separated from the main community because there just wasn’t enough activity in /c/anime to justify making all those posts here as they would drown out anything else. I think that a couple things have made that problem a lot less worrisome:

            • The increased activity in this community since then
            • Moving to a different model of discussion posts where not every show gets a post for every episode

            I am still figuring out exactly what the model will look like going forward, but I think it is clear from the experiment this season that this community can bear the volume of discussion threads now.

            • @TokyoCaramel
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              33 months ago

              That makes sense to me, a hybrid of /c/anime and series-specific /c/s depending on popularity. That makes more sense than /c/episode_discussion since that’s categorized on the type of content, rather than categorized by a community of people interested in it. So I agree with the future vision. Appreciate you taking the time to explain!

  • e0qdk
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    54 months ago

    I mentioned in a past comment a while back that I made a catalog of my anime. One of the observations I found while making it is that everything except for one movie had an entry on the English language Wikipedia already. That movie is Gundress from 1999. According to my personal journal, I watched this once back in 2014, apparently, but I remembered nothing about it, so I loaded it up recently and rewatched it.

    The movie has that “sort of hard to follow if you don’t already know the source material” kind of feel – although I think this is the original work? I checked the Japanese Wikipedia entry about it after watching it. Sticking the article through a translator, there’s a description of a seriously screwed up initial showing and mismanagement of production with the film being finished after it aired in theaters initially. The version I have is finished, of course; if half the movie wasn’t colored in I’d definitely have remembered that!

    The DVD menu prominently credits it as “Masamune Shirow’s Gundress”, but I’m not sure what his role in the production actually was. He’s listed in the opening credits for 設定協力 which got translated to English as “Characters Designed by” – but different people are credited with character and mech design in the end credits. A literal translation is something like “setting cooperation”.

    There’s definitely a number of familiar elements with some buildings reminiscent of Dominion Tank Police, mech suits that reminded me of designs in GitS:SAC, as well as thermoptic camouflage, cable-based cyborg communication (jacked into the neck), cyberdiving, etc. coming up during the story.

    Unusually, this anime features a Little Arabia enclave within the Japanese “Bayside City” the story is set in and one of the main characters is Muslim. I think this may be the only time I’ve seen Arabic script in anime – although I don’t know what it says.

    I clipped some screenshots and stacked them up so you can see what it looks like, if you’re curious: https://files.catbox.moe/qtsa0d.png (~8MB)

    • @wjs018OPM
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      24 months ago

      Interesting, I hadn’t heard of this movie at all. As for Masamune Shirow, he is listed as the character designer on AniList. However, I am not sure why that would be a prominent enough role to get his name in the title. There has to be some nuance that isn’t being captured in the job title. My guess is that character designer probably meant something very different for this production than what character designer would mean in a production today.

      Looking at some art and stills, I totally see the Ghost in the Shell comparison. I just looked up GitS now and had no idea that the original manga was published all they way back in 1989. For some reason I thought it more like the mid 90’s. However, I guess with how long things took to trickle overseas back then, it was years after things came out, so I probably got the wrong impression of its release. When it was “new” to me, isn’t when it was actually new.

      I am trying to think of other instances of clearly Muslim or Arabic populations within anime and there are very few I can think of. It is easier to think of “Muslim-coded” people that bear likeness to Arab populations, but set in a fictional world, so not really. I haven’t watched much Gundam, but I am guessing that it might be most represented in that series as, from what I have seen of it, they tend to pull characters from around the globe.

      Interesting little piece of media. Thanks for the info on it!

  • @SnowGator@lemm.ee
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    44 months ago

    Caught up on a few current seasonals and enjoying them a good amount. Frieren, Solo Leveling, and Dangers in my Heart have all been good to great. A smidge behind on Delicious in Dungeon and Apothecary Diaries, but all super good.

    Started Vinland Saga from the beginning, and realized that I think the Netflix auto summary (which I accidentally read while trying to start the series) spoiled a major S1 plot point because it was teasing S2. But I’ve never watched any of it, so that super sucks.

    Finally got to watching Suzume. I really liked it. Your Name is one of my all time favorites, and Weathering With You was good but not great, so it was really nice that this almost got to some of Your Name’s highs for me. I love the magical realism of Makoto Shinkai’s movies. And this one jumped right into it from the beginning in such a way that I had no idea where it was going to go for such a full length movie. Animation was excellent and I found the characters and journey more believable and relatable than Weathering. It’s on Crunchyroll. Strongly recommended if you haven’t made time for it yet!

    • @wjs018OPM
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      44 months ago

      Netflix has caught me with those shenanigans before. I also hate how they autoplay trailers all the time when I am just flipping through. I think I know what you are talking about with Vinland Saga though even though I haven’t watched/read it. My wife is a big fan of the manga and we have talked about the series before.

      Glad you liked Suzume! It was such a gorgeous piece of animation. I have written before that Suzume is worth the price of admission for the animation alone even if you don’t like the story at all. It is an excellent showpiece of animation as an art form.

    • @zabadoh
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      3 months ago

      Frankly, the .ml admins’ heavy handed intervention in /c/anime accomplished the impressive feat of being insulting, oppressive and disrespectful, and showed a lack of understanding of anime and manga culture.

      I have also abandoned .ml, despite starting in lemmy there. (Actually I started in fmhy, but that instance only lasted about a month)

      If you believe the numbers, this /c has about twice the weekly and daily visitors as .ml, despite having less than 10% of the total subscribers as .ml

    • @wjs018OPM
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      13 months ago

      Do you mean this discussion post? I used to post in both communities. However, after the recent round of admin interventions, they went back and deleted all of the weekly discussion posts for the past couple months I had made. I also got a private message from one of the admins about my posting. So, I am not actively posting in the ml community any longer. For a couple weeks, that community was locked to mods only, so I couldn’t post if I wanted to.

  • @Kissaki@feddit.de
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    3 months ago

    I’ve watched reincarnated with mom (actual name is too long) this week. The good of it is mainly how bad it is. So not actually good. But some aspects at least kept me watching.

    • @wjs018OPM
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      23 months ago

      I am surprised you couldn’t remember “Do You Love Your Mom and Her Two-Hit Multi-Target Attacks?” It really rolls off the tongue. /s

      I haven’t seen it, but if it is in the so-bad-its-good zone, then I might check it out. I have seen/read weirder isekai in the past. I am not too prideful to enjoy some trash.

      • @Kissaki@feddit.de
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        23 months ago

        If you’re watching JP voicing, it does have some (good) wordplay/puns. I liked that part about it.