Winter Season 2012/13

Winter Preview 2012/2013

Last updated (1/29/2013)

Oreshura (Also known as: Ore no Kanojo to Osananajimi ga Shuraba Sugiru)

                    You stare into these girls eyes, who just a couple minutes ago, confessed her love to you. Your chest feels tight and you have an overwhelming fluttering pain that makes it difficult to breathe. You feel queasy and sweat slowly drips down your neck. Suddenly, the mood changes quickly and you feel like this girl (who just confessed to you) is lying to you. In an instant, this beautiful girl pulls out a notebook. Not just some notebook, but your journal; a journal where you keep your deepest and darkest secrets. As soon as she pulls your journal out, she starts explaining to you how she’s intending to blackmail you if you don’t comply with her wishes. Ever heard of this story? Well I sure haven’t. 

                    Oreshura is not your typical romantic comedy series that tries to stray off from the norms. Not only does it have an interesting plot, but it has interesting characters that make the show quite enjoyable to watch. The main character, Eita Kidou, is a high school student who is aiming to be the top student of his class and is planning of attending a medical school once he graduates. Also, Eita doesn’t want anything to do with love/romance; his parents abandoned him when he was younger and he sees love as a waste of time. To his misfortune; though he’s stuck sitting next to the most popular, and attractive girl in their grade, Masuzu Natsukawa. Masuzu is a strong willed, intelligent, person who doesn’t really care about all the attention she gets; she’s usually alone and wants nothing to do with the other guys (sound familiar?). Last but not least, we have Chiwa Harusaki; one of Eita’s childhood friends and probably best friend. Chiwa and Eita have been through thick and thin and have always kept each other company.

                   I’ve only been able to see the first three episodes of this anime, but to be honest, I’m enjoying it. The animation and the music (beginning and ending music) are solid and it tries to deviate from other romantic comedies by adding a fresh plot with entertaining characters. It’s hard to tell if this anime will keep trying new things, in other words stay original, or if it will just be another harem where it has many girls falling in love with the main character (not that it’s a bad thing). Even if you’re not a fan of romantic comedies/harems, you should give Oreshura a chance. By Previewer Abraham "Ragingmau5" Villezcas 

Original Creator: Yuiji Yuiji
Director: Kanta Kamei

Publisher: Aniplex

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                 Kotoura is a young girl who has the ability to read minds, and when she first gets this ability, she ended up pushing everyone away because she would unknowingly reveal everyone’s secrets. The whole first half was a dramatic and sometimes overly dramatic showcase of the tragedy Kotoura has had to go through for most of her young life. After being disowned by her parents, Manabe walks into her life, and the gloom of the first half literally shatters, and we get to see the beginnings of an awesome friendship, between 2 characters that you will actually care about.           
                It was well crafted how the show showed us the heart breaking past of Kotoura, and digs deep into our heart to want her to find better days. Then Manabe being the lovable idiot he is, gets introduced to her, and plays off extremely well with her and her mind reading powers. You can just tell the show is going to be a lot of fun. By Previewer Rob Lawson. 

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Vividred Operation

                    The story begins in a place where science has solved most of the world’s problems. The Manifestation engine, a machine that creates renewable energy, has solved the energy crisis that many countries faced. This Utopia, however, has a great adversary that is trying to destroy this machine—the Alones. These machines/creatures are powered by some sort of energy that is (I think) related to the manifestation machine and are trying to destroy the Island where the engine resides. There is hope though. Akane and her friends are ready to fight these monsters with the help of a new technology (The Vivid System) that allows them to have incredible power.

                    To be honest, when I read the premise of this anime (and saw the artwork) I was somewhat exited and had high hopes for this anime. Well, I don’t know what to think about it now. Don’t get me wrong, the story, music, and the animation of this anime are all pretty good, but the characters and the loli fan service really put me off. I know this is somewhat soon to say that there isn’t much (or any) character development so far, but it really helps the story move along if we get to know the characters and their personalities. The only character they have somewhat gone in detail about is the main character Akane Isshiki. She’s a 14 year old girl who lives with her little sister and her grandfather; he created the Manifestation Engine and the Vivid System. In the first two episodes, we learn that her father passed away and that her mother is in the hospital. We also learn that she has a best friend named Aoi Futaba that she met while delivering newspapers and that she’s afraid of heights due to an accident many years ago. Other than that, they haven’t really touched much on the characters. Hopefully future episodes reveal to us what each character is like. As for the fan service, it’s something that I can tolerate but it’s just there to attract people to the show.

                    I think Vividred has the potential to be a good show. It has a grand sci-fi story that might prove worthwhile to watch. If you’re into action filled anime, with the consistent pantsu shots, then this anime might be what you were looking for. By Previewer Abraham "Ragingmau5" Villezcas 

Director: Kazuhiro Takamura
Publisher: Aniplex

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Bakumatsu Gijinden Roman

                    The show is set in the Edo period, and our protagonist Roman is a “helper” by day and a masked Robinhood by night. The episode felt very fast paced, jumping from one seen to the next without fleshing too much out. Some of the jokes, and charm it was trying to convey felt forced or just flat. The group of people that Roman allies himself with get no real introduction on how they know him and who they are.  Then the main conflict gets introduced in the last 10 minutes, and ends in that time span. Then if the ending wasn’t rushed enough, they decided to throw a screwball out of know where with the introduction of some supernatural elements that came out of know where with no explanation, foreshadowing, and just feels misplaced.
                   Granted this is only the first episode, and the last seen gives me hope for potentially interesting storyline in the future. It’s not all bad and it’s very watchable, it just left me wanting more from the show then what they are giving me. By Previewer Rob Lawson. 

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Ai Mai Mi

                    Ai Mai Mi is a very short (three minutes per episode) comedic anime that follows three girls in a manga club – Ai, Mai, and Mi. So there isn’t anything else much to say other that the show (in my opinion) isn’t very good. The animation in general is alright. It’s somewhat erratic and I feel like they are forcing their jokes sometimes. A good thing about this show is that the ending music is somewhat catchy. If you like short and sweet comedy anime like Teekyu, then this might be the show for you. By Previewer Abraham "Ragingmau5" Villezcas 

Director: Itsuki Imazaki
Publisher: Takeshobo

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Boke no Imoto wa “Osaka Okan”

                    In order to really appreciate this anime you need to know some Japanese culture and the differences between the regions in japan. This five minute series derives its humor from making fun of stereotypes related to the Kansai-region; this anime specifically talks about the differences between Tokyo and Osaka. The story revolves around an average high school boy, named Kyousuke Ishihara, who now lives with his younger sister (Namika Ishihara) who was separated when they were younger. Other than that you don’t really give you any more information regarding these two characters. If you enjoy five minute omakes then give this show a try. By Previewer Abraham "Ragingmau5" Villezcas 

Publisher: BS Asahi

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                   Maoyu captured my heart in the short time I watched it. Hero is out to stop the war between the Demons and Humans by slaying the Demon King himself. As it turns out the Demon King is actually the Demon Queen, and she has an alternative to ending the war. Part of that strategy is to promise each other to one another. Most of the episode is spent explaining the lore of the war, and the motives of the characters. Not a bad thing by any means, in fact it was extremely interesting, and helps set the back drop for the show.
                    The show feels very much like Spice and Wolf, probably due to having the same Director. So expect to like this one if you are a fan of Spice and Wolf. One big thing that impressed me was how beautiful the backgrounds were. They look like they were painted with water colors, and that really help set an atmosphere and moods for the show that feels unique, and strangely calm for a show about war. By Previewer Rob Lawson. 
                                                                                                                                          Available at:

Da Capo lll

                    First, let’s get something strait. This series is known for having its fan service. Many people tend to stray off from these types of anime because they say that anime with excessive fan service can’t be taken seriously or that it ruins the story. So will Da Capo lll have a structured story that is accompanied by some fan service? I’m not sure. I’ve heard mixed reviews about D.C (Da Capo) one and two and how it has some mature topics. Also, I would like to add that haven’t had a chance to see the other anime series (D.C. one and two) and I haven’t played any of the visual novels. So my opinion will come from someone who knows very little about the series. That being said, I think Da Capo looks like a good romance/harem anime that has potential.

                    The story follows a young high school guy named Kiyotaka Yoshino who is in the official newspaper club; he’s also accompanied by five other girls: Rikka Morizono, Aoi Hinomoto, Charles Yoshino, Himeno Katsuragi, and Sara Rukawa (who so far is my favorite). Over the years, the Sakura trees have stopped blooming and people don’t really know why. One winter day, when the newspaper club is gathered around The Everlasting Sakura Tree (a tree that grants wishes), something magical happens. The Sakura trees start to bloom and everyone’s phone mysteriously gets a text: “if the cherry blossoms start blooming, in the promised place…”. Having experienced the magic first hand, the official newspaper club is getting ready to publish a newspaper that will blow the rivals (the unofficial newspaper club) out of the water.

                    As for the animation of this show it’s pretty good; the scene where the Sakura tree blooms looks gorgeous and it looks like they took their time in order to make it. The intro and ending music is also pretty good. So in all, I think this romance anime is going to be pretty good. D.C. is very popular anime series/visual novel and I doubt this will fail to satisfy their fans and the people that are just being introduced to their series. By Previewer Abraham "Ragingmau5" Villezcas 

Director: Ken’ichi Ishikura

Publisher: Dwango

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                     Senyu is a light hearted adventure anime that seems to be all about the laughs. As soon as the anime started the first bit of dialogue between Hero, and Royal Soldier (The two main characters) made me grin from ear to ear. It didn’t stop there either; the whole episode was filled with big brother humor, and was a constant Parody of classic JRPG’s. Hero is hot headed and full of himself and Royal Soldier is calm, collected, and very sarcastic. It’s a fun combination to pair up.
                    The biggest downside to this otherwise being a potential favorite for myself is that it is only 4 and half minutes long per episode…Yes, that is correct. By Previewer Rob Lawson.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                           Available at:

Ishida to Asakura

                    This short omake tells the story of two high school friends named Ishida and Asakura who have one goal in life: to open a flower shop in order to look at all the pretty women that come through. When I first heard about this anime I honestly didn’t have any high hopes for it. However, after seeing the first three episodes, I can seriously say that I like it. I don’t really know what separates this omake from others like Ai Mai Mi, but I’ve enjoyed this one. This is definitely not for everyone, but if you like surreal humour then you might enjoy this. By Previewer Abraham "Ragingmau5" Villezcas 

Director: Pippuya 
Publisher: Yomiuri Telecasting Corporation (YTV)

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Chihayafuru 2

                    Have you ever had an anime that you read about and thought to yourself “who the hell would watch this”. I also thought to myself “who could possibly like a show about a girl who is inspired to play a card game competitively that’s based on ancient poetry”. Well, those were my first thoughts of Chihayafuru (the first series) and I was definitely wrong. I began to love the series and not only did I become interested in Karuta (that’s the name of the card game), but I started to like all of the characters and became somewhat attached to them. Chihayafuru truly conveys the passion and dedication each character has for the game and for each other. If you haven’t watched the first series and like drama/comedy filled anime, then I suggest you should before you read this review.

                    So, on to Chiyafuru 2. The story starts at the start of the second year. The Mizusawa Karuta Club is looking for new recruits, but it seems like no one is really interested in this game. Also, the group is having some conflicts. Everyone has their own goals and they aren’t able to agree on many things. Too top it all off, only two (so far) people join the club after everyone else either gets bored of the club or just doesn’t want to play karuta. So far, the anime feels and looks just like the last series; which is a good thing in my opinion. It brings two new characters into the mix, but it leaves the other characters unchanged (for the most part). Also, the animation is the same as the last series. It’s a little different than the other anime, but I really enjoy the art style (those redish/brownish ayase eyes!). If you enjoyed the last series, you will definitely like this new season. By Previewer Abraham "Ragingmau5" Villezcas 

Director: Morio Asaka

Publisher:  NTV

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Tamako market

                    When I first heard that Kyoto Animation was behind Tamako Market, I was pretty excited. They are well known for making high quality anime with good story lines. Also, the director Naoko Yamada (she’s known for directing Clannad, Air,and K-On!), also worked on this anime. To be honest, I’ve never been a big K-On! fan but I went ahead and started Tamako Market anyways.

                    Tamako Kitashirakawa is the oldest daughter of a family who runs a mochi shop; mochi is a traditional Japanese dessert that’s made out of glutinous rice. On day, while she’s visiting her local flower shop, she finds a bird who can talk; later on you find out that this bird is on a quest to find his prince a woman to marry. Other than that, the series follows the everyday life of Tamako and her friends.

                    Like I said before, I’m not a big fan of K-On! so I was somewhat hesitant to watch this series, but to be honest, I really like it so far. The story and the animation are both done really well and the music (the ending music is just so good) is very good. If you’re a fan of Kyoto Animation’s work, and you’re love K-On!, then you might also enjoy Tamako Market. By Previewer Abraham "Ragingmau5" Villezcas 

Director: Naoko Yamada
Production: Kyoto Animation

Character Design: Yukiko Horiguchi


                    This is an interesting little anime. Yet another 4 minute long anime has fallen on my doorstep, and it adds a little something extra that I think will make it worth watching. We are introduced to a group of quirky girls who are trying to break into the manga business, and the problem is they have no experience in this field at all. In a light hearted fashion, the show starts to walk us through the process and difficulties of publishing a manga magazine. Highlighting their failures, cost, and perseverance it takes to get the job done. By Previewer Rob Lawson. 

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Hakkenden: Eight Dogs of the East 

                Hakkenden introduces us to a group of people who survived the destruction of their village five years prior. The 3 survivors now live together, and they hunt demons. This episode is well paced, showing us how the protagonists interact with the village and their friends. Showing us their risk to society, introducing their enemies, and showing us the abilities the protagonists have. Although the show still didn’t capture me. This anime does nothing new, and it doesn’t do any one specific thing better than any other anime. It’s just bland. I didn’t connect with any of the characters at all. By Previewer Rob Lawson. 

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The Unlimited - Hyōbu Kyōsuke 

                The Unlimited gives us another badass main character. Hyobu is smart, cunning, and even intimidating. He is an esper who is out to save espers from being mistreated by humans. You could probably think of him as being like Magneto, except less evil and more kind hearted. The episode showcases nicely just how powerful Hyobu is as an esper with him flinging around helicopters and such. Then it also does a nice job of introducing the second main character, Andy, with Hyobu using his brain to get things done, not just his esper abilities. Then a nice twist at the end helps keep the ball rolling leaving you wanting more. By Previewer Rob Lawson. 

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