Spring 2011 Anime: Hanasaku Iroha

Hey lady, you know that guy who likes you? Go live with him instead- you're 16, it's probably legal somewhere in the south.

Number of Episodes Aired: 2

Simulcast on Crunchyroll

Alternate Title Suggestions: I Can’t Believe My Grandma is This Sadistic, Flowers+Depression

The amazing thing to me about Hanasaku Iroha is that, with its premise, it should be horrendously depressing, yet mysteriously, it’s not. Our plucky protagonist Ohana gets kicked out of her normal life when her flighty Mom decides to run off with her boyfriend (it doesn’t matter why), and is sent to go live at her grandmother’s country inn- where she’s forced to do physical labor for her keep and is basically treated like dirt. Even Grandma gives her no sympathy, since she disowned Ohana’s mother and no longer considers them part of the family.

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X-Men Episode #2: Poor Man’s Storm

You might think from this screenshot that Ms. Stormu is a no-nonsense, lightning-slinging deity; you would be wrong.

Summary: They’ve made Storm weak in order to make Cyclops’ ongoing PTSD over the whole “my girlfriend became a giant psychic bird-creature and died” thing an actual problem for the X-Men, and it’s a huge pain. While this episode is better than the first by virtue of stuff actually happening, these people are still really unlikable for some reason- something not likely to be fixed by introducing Emma “I’m a bitch, deal with it” Frost next episode. Oh dear.

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Spring 2011 Anime: Nichijou (My Ordinary Life)

If there's any one theme so far this season, it's that little girls have dirty, dirty minds.

No. of Episodes Aired so far: 2

Simulcast on Crunchyroll

Alternate Title Suggestions: School With Goats, Azumanga Daioh -1, Desperate Attention Ploy Theater

I’m going to be a rebel and not title these Spring 2011 anime posts “First Impressions”, firstly because everyone else does it, secondly because I may not be getting to some of these until they’re several episodes in, taking away from the idea of it being an impression of the beginning.

After being too busy to recap/review much anime lately, this season I decided to at least to try all the spring simulcasts on Crunchyroll, plus another select few. The only show being recapped here on an episode-by-episode basis is X-Men, because apparently, I hate myself, but maybe that will change.

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Parasite Eve Playthrough Part II

Parasite Eve is split up into 6 days; This entry covers the remainder of Day 1. The Day format is interesting in and of itself because games usually don’t tell you how much “in-game time” has passed for the characters in the story. For example, in Final Fantasy X you can finish the game with 10 hours on your timer or 200, but you haven’t the faintest idea how long Yuna’s pilgrimage was supposed to have taken from a story perspective. A week? A month? Six months? We’ll never know.

PE takes a very different approach: You can spend 500 hours running around Central Park if you want to (and if for some God- forsaken reason you want to try the “300 pieces of Junk sidequest,” you very well might find yourself doing just that), but you’ll still be stuck in the second day. You always know precisely where you are in the story.

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X-Men Episode #1: Instant X-Men, Just Add Angst

A brooding-as-usual Cyclops: we could have done without this.

Summary: I can’t decide if the problem is that these really aren’t the characters I know, or if it’s just oddly written for a first episode, but something is definitely off with this anime adaptation of my favorite superheroes; so far, Beast is the only redeeming feature.

I don’t know about this most recent X-Men adaptation, I just don’t know- is it boring to me because I’ve been an X-Men fan for a long time, and I’ve seen all of this already? Or is it just boring because it’s boring?

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Tomb Raider, Level 10: City of Khamoon

I’m a bit out of my depth with the Egypt levels- on the one hand, from the standpoint of playability, they’re all pretty much great. However, they don’t seem to conjure up the kind of thoughts in me that many other levels do, leaving me constantly aware while I’m playing them that I’m playing TR levels, albeit some very good ones, and NOT really exploring some ancient locale. This may have more to do with me than the game, but it does leave me a little puzzled in terms of how to rate them.

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Thoughts on America’s Greatest Otaku #6

Just between you and me, if you have to drive two hours to get to the main Otaku spot in "Louisville," I don't think that city makes the grade.

Summary: This week’s episode had two distinct themes: traditional Japanese culture (as opposed to the more typical pop culture), and Dom getting the snot beat out of her repeatedly. Surprisingly, both were quite good.

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