Archive for May, 2008

Kareshi Kanojou No Jijou (Kare Kano) Manga review

May 31, 2008

My Gosh, what a brilliant romance manga. Thats all I could think off after finishing it. Finshing it even made me sad that there were no other volumes of it.

So a little background info to start this review off. Kareshi Kanojou No Jijou or Kare Kano as it’s better known, is a romance manga written by Masami Tsuda. It’s 21 volumes in length and was published from 1995 to 2005. According to my sources (wikipedia lol), Kare Kano has already been animated by the people from Gainax but wasn’t really finished due to some conflict between the mangaka and the studio. SO that means I haven’t seen the anime.

SO what prompted me to read this manga in the first place? Well people have been talking about Kare Kano for a long long time, and the first time I heard of it had to be last year. However it wasn’t until recently that I decided to give it a try and as you might have guessed (from my first line xD) I totally loved it. I was just drawn in deeper as I read on and by the time I reached the middle volumes I was hooked.

Anyway, the main characters of Kare Kano are Souichiro Arima and Miyazawa Yukino. The manga focuses on the trials and hardships they face as they go through high school while maintaining their relationship. Okay, Yukino is at first glance your average smart kid, but her outward appearance is just a facade. On the inside, she’s actually a schemer who keeps up appearances just to draw attention to herself. Ruthless, jealous and cold, this pretty much sums up Yukino’s character. Arima, like Yukino, is also a top achiever; Handsome, athletic, good grades and the like, except for the fact that he beats her in pretty much everything she does. Always polite, always kind, Arima is the model student of their high school, Hakuou academy. However, like Yukino, he also hides dark and painful secrets.

Kare Kano 1Kare Kano 2Kare Kano 3

However, amidst it all they manage to see through each others facades, fall in love and start a relationship. As they go on they are joined by many friends such as Hideaki Asaba, a handsome playboy who becomes Arima’s best friend, Tsubasa, Arima’s childhood friend, Maho, rival turned friend, Tsubaki, Aya and Risa, once distant but ending up being Yukino’s best friends, and many others such as Tonami, Kazuma and even the Yin and Yang band.

Kare Kano 7Kare Kano 9Kare Kano 8

Okay, now to the heart of the matter. I’d say the themes of this manga are quite obvious. Facing the past, Love and understanding, handling relationships, and stuff like that. I’ll start with Yukino. Her obsessive attitude towards being the first is probably what defined the start of this manga. Smart, brilliant but at the same time all alone. However, she doesn’t notice this until she meets Arima who is equally, if not more perfect. Since this manga starts with Yukino as the main character it’s easy to see that the mangaka, Masami Tsuda, is setting her up for a relationship. However, Yukino only starts to shine in earnest when she pairs up with Arima. Both seemingly perfect, yet alone all the time, their relationship is what propels the series onwards.

Kare Kano 4Kare Kano 5Kare Kano 6

The part of the story I can relate the most too would be Arima’s story. Coming from an established family yet treated as an outcast, Arima’s past is awfully complex. Being the illegitimate child of an illegitimate child made his relatives see him as nothing more than a disgrace. Living with his foster parents, who unlike everyone else love him very much, he starts to fall deeper into his self made prison. It’s only until he meets Yukino that things start to change for the better. Now I won’t write too much in detail about Arima’s past. I’ll leave that to you to figure out.

There are many other side stories too. One I enjoyed alot was Kazuma and Tsubasa’s story. Meeting, becoming related through their parents marriage, loving as brother and sister, and eventually loving each other as couples. What struck me the most about Kazuma’s story was his love for music. After joining the band Yin and Yang (who were indie at the time but ended up as worldwide stars at the end of the manga) to struggling between his love for Tsubasa and music, to finding out that both loves can coexist together, I was just hooked all along the way. Being a man of music myself this spoke volumes to me as I’ve always known that music is something that you pour part of yourself into, emotions, pain. experiences and the like.

Kare Kano 12Kare Kano 13Kare Kano 14

Souji and Reiji’s (Arima’s foster and biological father) backstory was also very touching and just served to give Arima’s childhood more depth. Seeing them deal with all the pain that’d been handed down from generation to generation just spoke to me on many different levels, making the manga even greater to me than what I originally felt it was. Other stories such as Tonami and Tsubaki’s past, Rika and Aya’s lives, Maho’s journey to love, the Steel Snow play and even Miyazawa’s parent’s backstory were just breaths of fresh air for me too. Yup, I pretty much loved every part of it.

Okay, Just bear with me for a while more while I explain why it is that I’m so drawn to this manga. I believe that Arima’s inner struggle with his past and how it gradually ruined his relationship with Yukino can be said as a parallel with many of the relationships we have. His past caused him to shun love from others, never opening himself up too much for fear of getting rejected again. So unsurprisingly, It wasn’t until he set things right with Yukino, his parents and everyone else that their relationship became stronger than before.

Kare Kano 10Kare Kano 11

I believe that we can learn many things from this, one of them is that no matter who we are or what we do, all of us need someone we can fall back onto. Taking all the burden ourself will just push us further away from the people we really care about. Secondly, I believe that just as Arima tried to change himself for the better, we need to do so too. Now, in regard to this matter, I’ve found that its amazing what God ( being a christian and all) can do to change our lives. What I’ve personally failed to change myself in the past, God has done for me. Even if you don’t share my sentiments I’m sure you’ll agree that , just like Arima, all of us would do better leaving bad habits behind.

Lastly, I totally loved the closure the final chapter (71 pages!) gave to this manga. Taking a look 16 years into the future was really great. The final panel where both Yukino and Arima bid their farewells(breaking the fourth dimension by talking to us, the viewers) was just really touching.

kare Kano 15Kare Kano 15Kare Kano 17

Wow that was a long review. I even lost track of my time while I was doing it! Anyway, Kare Kano to me, is probably the best romance manga I’ve ever read and will probably be the best I’ve read for a long time to come. So I hope my review did justice to this great series and that you enjoyed my thoughts on this awesome manga, until next time then! xD

P.S sorry for the long review and scrunched up pictures! xD

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Time for a little break~~

May 29, 2008

Hmm, I think it’s about time I wrote a filler post. After all, my life isn’t totally about anime (I’d say a large chunk of it is thought. xD). So I thought that I’d probably just list down a few related things, some stuff I’m working on now and the like.

First up, I’d like to say that my term break will be starting next week. Thats three weeks of holidays, of which is going to be quite a pain. Why a pain you ask? Well I’m going to have to sit for my Mid Semestral Exams right after the holidays, and If any of you who’s reading this post happens to be a Bio student, you’d probably guess that my three weeks are going to be a flurry of books and papers. Wow thats so exciting. =_+

Anyway, that doesn’t mean that I’ll be any less free that I am right now, so my blogging won’t be affected.

Okay, for all those of you who enjoy manga (especially good romance ones) this one is for you. I’m currently reading Kare Kano and I’m just totally awed by this manga. I’m not done with it yet but I feel that it just presents the emotions that Masami Tsuda, the author (affectionally dubbed ‘Tsuda’) wants us to feel so well. I’ll definitely review it once I’m done reading all 21 volumes, so I’ll leave this for another day.

The main point is; whats so great about romance manga? I for one think that romance manga beats romance themed anime any day, while for other genres anime easily takes the cake. I don’t know but when I’m reading great romance manga (one example would be fruits baskets) I can just take all the time I want to fully understand the significance of a particular scene. While I agree anime can do this rather well too; with the addition of great music and the like, nothing beats reading though a particular page and realizing just how much it can mean.

Although some exceptions do exist, for example the visual style incorporated by Bokura Ga Ita (another totally awesome show/novel) was just so touching at the very right moments because, I feel, they focused solely on the ability of the viewers to empathize with the characters ( the white backdrop, absence of music, face pans and so on). Yeap, manga is awesome.

Lastly, I should be going to a cosplay fest by ACG with some of my old buddies soon. Unless I’m wrong it’ll be held in Downtown East (Singapore, Changi for all those don’t know) and with their permission I may be covering their work. So look forward to that! And who knows? I might even be putting on the old cosplay mantle again. ^_^

Thats all for today, I hope I didn’t bore you all too much with my rants. So until next time!

Nabari No Ou 1-8 & First Impressions

May 28, 2008

Hmm so I was thinking, do I categorize this post as an initial impression or should I just label it as ‘Nabari No ou 1-8’? After much thought (few seconds?) I decided to just add 1+2 together and behold my title!

Yeah, I should probably get to the impressions, yes?

Nabari No Ou 2

Anyway, if I was given just one word to describe Nabari No Ou, it would be ‘unexpected’. I’m quite sure that many of those who’ve seen the first episode would probably chuck it into the ‘mindless action, shounen, and looks like naruto‘ bin. Hey, first impressions right? Well, I was proven wrong after the third episode or so, when the plot broke out of the conventional shounen anime plot cycle and treaded down an entirely different path, storywise.

Plotwise, Nabari No Ou is more or less about ninjas, not your typical ninjas mind you, but rather urban ninjas. In contrast to the modern and seemingly normal society, the ninja society lurks in the background, hidden. It’s here that we’re introduced to Miharu Rokujo our male lead and the possessor of the Shinrabanshou, a legendary secret scroll that has been the cause of ninja wars throughout the centuries. Despite his nonchalant behavior towards the matter, ninja villages all over still want to possess the Shinrabanshou, obviously causing him quite a lot of trouble. So the story basically follows him through his journey to remove (not use) the Shinrabanshou from his body.

Characterwise, I’d say Nabari No Ou has a certain amount of diversity. Ranging from friends who’ve sworn to help him, the people who want to use him, and the people who just seem to be sitting on the proverbial fence. The main characters each have their own personalities; Rokujo with his total apathy towards everything, Thobari’s (the teacher) over protectiveness, Aizawa’s uncertain attitude and Raimei’s whole steady but ‘cute’ personality. Even the villains are fleshed out pretty well, for example Yoite who just wants to erase himself from the world and our carefree writer friend, Yukimi (ninjas with guns rock by the way. xD).

Artwise the animation is rather constant and fluid, no big surprise seeing as Sunrise is behind the animation of Nabari No Ou. Speaking of which, Sunrise has been making their presence felt this season, in Nabari as well as many other anime this season such as Soul Eater. Back on topic, character design is rather good too, with Thobari’s being my favourite. Also, the rest of the cast have definite facial or physical traits that differentiate themselves rather well. The colour plate is reminiscent to that of light toned water colours, giving Nabari No Ou a slow paced feel and artistic touch (contrary to the things going on in the story) .

Nabari No Ou 1

One of the earlier screencaps I took. This one covers episode 1.

Soundwise, I don’t have much to complain about the BGM suits the pacing of the show quite well. The only problem I can spot is the voice casting. I mean Rie Kumigaya playing Rokujo, a male? Shana I can live with, Nagi I found amusing, I didn’t even mind her role as Nena Trinity but casting Rie as Rokujo was just weird. Although I’ve got to give her credit for adapting her voice quite well over the episodes (even though she reverts back to that high pitch wail of hers once in a while. xD).

Overall, Nabari No Ou shows alot of promise and with 26 episodes could go a long way in making it’s mark in this years ‘top anime’ rankings. Great promise, great action, interesting storyline and all that jazz. So check it out if you haven’t yet!

Vampire Knights – 7, Hmm… development?

May 26, 2008

Flashback, but intense all the same.

Vampire Knights 7

Summary;

So we find Yuuki in a shooting range watching Zero while he practices. She asks him if he’s okay, he says he is and asks Yuuki to stop wearing the bandage she wears around her neck. Yuuki replies that it’s to keep people from seeing his bite marks. Zero continues on, asking her if she’d prefer it if it was Kaname who sucked her blood not him which offends Yuuki, causing her to leave.

In her dorm Yuuki collapses on her couch, reflecting on what Zero said, thinking that her secret with Zero was pushing Kaname away from herself. Her thoughts then overwhelm her, making her recall the past.

In Kaien’s room we see a young Yuuki and Kaname. Yuuki who’s lost her memory realizes that Kaname is a vampire, like the one who attacked her and reels in shock. This makes Kaname decide to go home to what Kaien refers to as a nest of demons. out to use him. A little while on, we see Kaien adopt Yuuki legally. Skip, Kaname visits Yuuki again and her antics cause him to laugh genuinely much to the concern of Kaien. As he tries to leave Yuuki calls out his name and smiles at him.

Her thoughts surround her again, bringing us closer to the present. This time we see Yuuki waiting for Kaname in the snow, two years have passed and its Yuuki’s birthday (the day he saved her). Kaname congratulates her. Even closer to the present, Yuuki is in middle school now and it dawns on her that Kaname is not the average vampire. Another time skip, we see Yuuki in the streets looking for Kaname but instead spots another vampire. He bows to Kaname, who suddenly appears behind Yuuki, who in turn greets Kaname. Next, we go to the time Zero was introduced to the Cross household. We’re shown that same memory of Zero clawing his neck.

Back to the present, Zero fires a shot and lowers his gun.Now we’re shown his memories.

Zero remembers Yuuki asking him to stop clawing his neck. He also remembers his and Kaname’s first encounter. After realizing that Kaname was a vampire, Zero tries to stab him but is stopped by Kaname who says that his hate is misdirected. Later on. Yuuki apologizes to Zero for not telling him about Kaname earlier but he just pushes her away saying that all vampires are bad. We fast forward to the day the night class was created. After hearing that, Zero adamantly disagrees and says that humans and vampires cannot live together, they have too much history. Addressing his concerns, Kaien says that Kaname would be joining the night class to keep the vampire students in check.

Back to the present, Zero says that his target of revenge was wrong. Kaname silently walks away from the target range. We’re now shown his thoughts, he wants to see the success of the night class. Back to the present again, Kaname stops at the bank of a pond.

Vampire Knights 7.1

No curry before bed Yuuki, apparently it has the same effect on vampire-exposed-girls as psychotropic drugs.

Once again, Yuuki wonders to herself whether vampires understand their partners thoughts through their blood. Another flashback, Yuuki goes to visit Kaname in the newly established moon dorms and meets Ichijou who quickly ushers her out. She enters again and spots Aidou, Ruka, and Kain walking on the second floor landing. Yuuki realizes that Ruka admires Kaname too.

Young Yuuki falls asleep on the stairs and is approached by another vampire but before he can do anything is stopped by Kaname. Shooing him away, Kaname nearly bites her too but refrains. He then brings her back to a dorm within the vampire residence. There he sees Kaname biting into Ruka’s neck and immediately flees, all according to his plan. Some time later, we see Yuuki thanking Kaname for taking care of her, right before he disappears into the moon dorms.

Finally in the present Zero covers Yuuki, who is asleep, with a blanket. As he nears her neck he gets the urge to bite her again but manages to hold himself off. He sees Kaname leaning on the door post, who invites him out for a walk. Out on the ground Kaname finally explains why he lets Zero, a level E live. Kaname goes on to say that Zero’s the only one who won’t betray Yuuki and that he’ll protect her.

My thoughts;

Man that was a seriously long write-up, but hey, long write ups mean great episodes right? Anyway, I really did like the way the animators did this episode; skipping from Yuuki’s thoughts to Zero’s and then to Kaname’s. It made the episode feel much more significant.

Anyway, this flashback episode was great (again). It revealed to me so many new things about our three lead characters. More importantly, we managed to get some exposure on Kaname’s cold attitude. What surprised me was how cheerful he was as a young vampire, around the time he saved Yuuki, which makes me wonder; what happened to him? Was it familial influence? A bad childhood? I’m quite interested to see what made him the Kaname he is now.

That aside, more light is shed on Yuuki’s connection to Kaname. Kaiens whole, ” Kaname is broken!” gig was really funny too. Although, while rather cute, it makes me wonder again, what was on Kaname’s mind when he pushed her away from him? He obviously still likes her. Possessive and pushy at the same time? Woah.

Anyway, it’s also good that Zero realized that his hate was misdirected, but just when I thought he was gonna patch things up with Kaname, they’re at it again. Anyway, great episode. I can’t wait for the next one!

Allison To Lillia – 7, “Like, may I call you Fi?”

May 25, 2008

Hmm, not the most believable episode but we’re given some interesting plot developing moments.

Allison To Lilla 7

Summary;

Short summary today, most of the scenes can be grouped in one sentence anyway. xD

So, Benedict gets Allison some wings by causing a diversion. Faking engine failure he lures all the guards away from the hangars, giving Allison and Wil some time to hijack one of the new fighterplane models, Benedict then restarts his engines and flies off . However, before Allison and WIl can take off the end of the runway is blocked. Allison immediately drives (yes, she drives the plane) out of the base and into the town and off the cliffside of the Srankarans. Yeap, they have liftoff.

In the air they meet up again and fly to the Ikstovan Capital, Kunst. As the planes fly in silence, Fiona confesses to Benedict that she’s not the real princess and that she’s faking the princess who died 10 years ago. This shocks Benedict, but after a silent explanation he gets the situation. Benedict also confesses that credit for the discovery of the mural should have went to Allison and Lillia and that he’s sick of all the undeserved attention he’s getting. They stare at each other before Benedict asks if he can call Fiona ‘Fi’.

Allison notices that Benedict and Fiona are lagging behind and slows down to check on them. She finds Benedict kissing Fiona’s hand and immediately goes into a jealous rage. Wil worsens the situation by being oblivious, as usual, to Allison’s frustration. She does a few barrel rolls and nosedives to pay him back. Noticing what just happened, Benedict asks Wil if he’s okay but before he can reply they see Kunst below.

Benedict executes a hero’s landing; right into the crowd (who cheer him on raucously) and brings Fiona up unto the stage. He asks a slightly stunned Owen Nihito for permission to speak. Thinking he’s supporting his campaign, Owen hands him the mic. Benedict then introduces Fiona to the assembly as Princess Francesca, daughter of the late queen of Ikstova and pushes her to the front. However just as she’s about to speak she is stopped by a grim faced Owen Nihito, much to everyones surprise.

My thoughts;

Okay this episode was a little too unbelievable for me. Allison hijacking that fighter plane was still okay by me since Benedict allowed it, but his landing into the assembly was a tad too forceful to be believable. Even worse, forcing his way unto the stage and asking for a chance to speak was just too much. I’m kinda surprised Owen Nihito even allowed Benedict to make a speech. His “I object!” line should have came before Benedict started his speech.

Anyway, I don’t want to sound too disappointed with this episode cause it was rather but I wish there’s a limit to how much I can accept. On the other hand, I’d say my dissatisfaction is due mainly to the realism I’ve come to expect from this anime, so I might be a bit biased in that sense. Anyway for all of you who did watch this episode, what are your opinions?

Itazura Na Kiss – 7, Wow, Just WOW!

May 22, 2008

Awesome episode, ’nuff said.

So, Itazura na kiss (started with a kiss) indeed, after all, it did start with a kiss. =D

Itazura Na Kiss 7

Summary;

It’s graduation day, Kotoko and Kin end their speeches as class representatives and get much praise, even from Irie. Outside, girls swarm over Irie asking for his second button but Irie says that it’s reserved; for his one true love, Kotoko. He then gets on his knees and gives his button to Kotoko. After that he carries Kotoko in his arms and poses for his mothers camera. Just as they’re about to kiss…

Kotoko wakes up. Yeah, it was obviously a dream.

Later, Irie and Kotoko get ready to go and as usual Irie’s mom gives him the ‘go out with Kotoko!’ prep talk. As they walk to the train station Kotoko reflects on how wonderful the last year had been, to this Irie replies that our of all his 18 years walking the earth this had been the most troublesome much to Kotoko’s dismay.

Behold the face of a guilty girl O_o

At school Kin tries, again, to win Kotoko’s heart and is also really unhappy with the fact that Irie going to the same college as Kotoko. Soon the assembly starts and Irie is called up to give his speech while Kotoko’s mind wanders. She flashes back to the time she first saw and fell in love with him, also an assembly. Soon it’s Kotoko and Kin’s turn. They both cause a ruckus with Kotoko spacing out and Kin fantasizing about marrying Kotoko. Popping back to reality he grabs the mic and challenges Irie, causing Irie’s mom to retort back, causing Kotoko to slip and make a fool of herself in front of the entire student body.

Speech over, Kotoko, Jinko, Satomi and Irie’s mom are walking in the courtyard when they spot a couple kissing. While the girls jealously question their luck with boys, Irie’s mother goes into her rage mode immediately. They spot Irie from a distance. He fends off two girls who confess to him, which makes Irie’s mother force Kotoko out. Comparing the situation to her dream, she asks him for his second button but is denied immediately. Button, fail. She asks him for a picture but is also denied immediately. Picture, fail. Grasping the situation Irie’s mother forces them to have one picture together which is ruined by Kin entering the scene. Picture 2, FAIL. The poor girl.

Photo attempt #2, FAILED

At night, Kin organizes a farewell party for Class F only to have it crashed by Class A who coincidentally also chose the same restaurant. As they sit at their own tables Kotoko gets upset about the class A girls fawning over Irie. However, just as she’s about to stand up Kin starts singing a song about his devotion to Kotoko. Obviously embarrassed, Kotoko tries to stop him but just as she gets up Kin gets a call from her father asking him to come to work. He dashes off, day saved.

Later, Class A’s homeroom teacher makes a comment about Kin failing his test which angers Class F’s homeroom teacher. He then turns his eyes on Kotoko saying she was the reason Irie failed to take the Tokyo University test. Irie denies this though, saying that he did it on his own accord and that Kotoko was beneath him. He then mocks her feelings for him in front of both classes. Kotoko, angry, pulls out his baby pictures (from episode 2) and tells everyone around. Shocked to his core, Irie grabs the pictures before more harm can done.

He then pulls Kotoko out the door and into an alley. Kotoko is unfazed by his anger and says that his mocking her feelings was just mean. She starts to cry saying she’s had enough and that she’ll stop loving Irie anymore. She goes on saying that she’ll forget everything they went through and start anew in college, causing Irie’s gaze to soften. Then, before she can continue…

He kisses her.

Irie walks away, leaving a very stunned but very happy Kotoko.

My thoughts;

Okay, I don’t care anymore. Call me a sucker for romance, you can even call me a softie, but THIS EPISODE WAS JUST TOTALLY AWESOME. My brain shut down the moment he kissed her, and nothing, not even a sugar overdose, can top shoujo anime in that area.

[Deep breath]

Phew, finally calmed down abit. Anyway, this episode was just awesome. It had the right amount of hilariousness topped with some really touching moments. I mean, I just couldn’t stop laughing when Kin (this time it’s him) said his marriage vows in front of the headmaster or when Kotoko’s dreams got shattered like that. Irie’s mom’s expressions were also extra comedic this time round. I can’t imagine her without that disgruntled, high pitch squeal anymore (“UMOUU!!!!” BWAHAHAHA! xD).

Okay, on to more serious matters. People all over have been speculating about Irie’s kiss, some saying it was out of spite or that he was having revenge on her. However I think, no offense, that thats not how it went down. To me, Irie seemed rather genuine and probably at this point probably has some feelings for Kotoko. I mean, it seemed to me that seeing her break down like that made him realize that he had hurt her, more than usual. So, it seemed o me that even though unsure, he probably tried to make amends. He even stuck his tongue out at the end! I don’t see how that kiss could possibly have any trace of malicious intent in it.

So, awesome episode, awesome show and as usual I’m totally waiting for the next episode. A penny for your thoughts? =D

No way, the trailer is finally out! School Rumble Sangaki

May 21, 2008

Oh My Gosh, finally a trailer of some sort! After 2 and a half years It’s finally here!

Now, I was really hoping for a full season but we’ll have to do with an OVA. From earlier news I heard its going to be packaged with the manga. Geez, thats a problem seeing as I won’t be able to get it (living in Malaysia and all) but if it ever does come to my shores, oh boy!

That said I can’t wait! xD

Kurenai 6 & 7 – Musicals galore & Love for dummies?

May 20, 2008

Despite me not blogging Kurenai. I’d have to be stupid to not notice what an awesome show it is. Though episodes 1 to 5 we’re awesome in their own ways, Episodes 6 and 7 were the real show stealers.

So, episode 6. Benika gets thumbs up from me for her splendid execution of their ‘music night’, I totally wasn’t expecting that and I’m extremely glad I didn’t.

Kurenai 6.1

Nice Hair?

Anyway, words can’t express the awesomeness of this episode. I’d say about 70% of the entire episode was one whole big musical and though I wasn’t getting that sound of music vibe, I was pretty much stunned beyond my capacity to speak. I can’t remember the last time I watched an anime with so many innovative slice-of-life moments, much more any of those with musicals.

Kurenai6

The hills are alive with the sound of music?

What got me the most was Yamie and Yuuka’s tone deafness, I was practically rolling in my seat when they started singing out of pitch. Yamie asking Yayoi for singing advice was really funny though, maybe Yayoi should try taking up professional singing rather than listening to all of Yamie’s widow stories. xD

However, the most awesome thing about the episode was when they transitioned from regular rehearsing to a full blown musical complete with flowy hair effects and dramatized facial expressions. Though they did look as if they drank too much. xD

Anyway, don’t just take my word for it; watch it.

Episode 7. Well this episode had a more serious tone didn’t it?

Talk about the ups and downs of relationships. I was really interested in Tamaki’s at-glance sum of passerby couples while dragging Murasaki all around. Her being confronted by her boyfriend with Murasaki at her stride must have been something sort of eye opening for our little princess.

Now this episode made me think about all the stereotypes associated with couples. Is the entire game only about pleasing the other party? DO relationships revolve around some sort of equilibrium that both people are supposed to maintain? Though I’m sure Tamaki’s dissection of their relationships is true to some extent I feel that this probably isn’t representative of all courting couples, although I’m pretty sure thats the case with most young relationships.

Anyway Poor Tamaki being dumped like that and all only to find her former boyfriend going out with someone else. Bad Tamaki for teaching Murasaki things that no seven year old should be learning. I mean Lolicon? Seriously! xD

Thats it for this out of the blue post on Kurenai from me, and I’m glad that I’m following this series because everything up to now has built what I would say is a really solid slice-of-life anime. Thats all folks! (couldn’t resist)

Vampire Knights – 6

May 19, 2008

Gee, I’m updating an awful lot today aren’t I? Two posts in one day isn’t really my usual flair but hey, I gotta cover up for the episodes I’m behind on.

It probably helps that today is vesak day and that I get a free holiday from it. No offence to my buddhist buddies! xD

Anyway, this episode is really something. Lots of plot and character development, lots of emotional moments, great episode.
Vampire Knights

Summary;

A flashback. A young Zero apologizes to Touga for making him lose an eye. Touga just replies that he didn’t give his eye up for Zero to make sad faces. Zero asks why vampires hurt people, Touga answers his rhetoric by saying vampires are beasts that act impulsively; enough reason to hunt them.

Back to the present, Touga apparently shot Zero with bullets imbued with anti-vampire magic. He lifts his gun to fire again but is stopped by Yuuki. Zero pushes away and prepares himself for another shot but is cut short by Kaien who stops Touga. When asked who he is, Touga says he’s a vampire hunter and Zero’s master.

Depressed by her inability to help Zero, Yuuki can only cry in her dorm. Over the next two days Zero is absent from class and isn’t even in his room. She forces Touga to tell her where Zero is and finds out that he’s been put into isolation given his current state. He then enters into a class, followed by Kaname who wonders if it’ll be better for Zero’s sake to have him transferred to the night class.

Inside the class Touga introduces himself to the night class as their ethics teacher. After a short introduction we find out that Touga is apparently the top vampire hunter around. After his lesson, Touga exits the classroom to find Yuuki still there. After asking him, she finds out that Zero is being held in the chairman’s guest room. She finds Zero in his self imposed prison and forces her way in. Apparently, Zero’s was a family of vampire hunters and Touga was his teacher. He lost an eye while defending Zero from a Level E.

Yuuki is unfazed by his past and forces her way into the room. Bringing Zero to the bathroom she makes him drink her blood, much to Zero’s protest, thinking it’s the only thing she can do for him. Losing to his instincts Zero bites her neck. He regains himself but is disgusted at his inability to control his blood lust, saying that nothing works for him; not the blood tablets or Yuuki’s blood. Yuuki says that she’ll stop at nothing to keep her promise to him, asking him to come to school the next day.

On the way back to her dorm she meets Kaname who obviously notices what happened. He lets it, although he wishes that Yuuki wouldn’t get herself hurt while protecting Zero. This pains Yuuki greatly. Kaname is stopped by Touga asking him what his plans are and why he doesn’t destroy Zero for what he did. Kaname’s reply is simple; he doesn’t want to lose Yuuki.

Next day, Ethics class is on self study making Yuuki worried. In the Chairman’s guest room, Touga meets up with Zero and questions him about his wound. Implying he knows what Zero did Touga pulls out a handgun. Yuuki reaches in time to hear two gunshots go off, but Zero stopped Touga from shooting him. Seeing that he’s got his will to live again, Touga asks him to struggle until the end and entrust him to Yuuki. Before Touga leaves he tells Zero that ‘that woman‘ is still alive, causing Zero to go wide eyed with shock. Zero just tells Yuuki that he won’t run away anymore.

My thoughts;

I fail. I just can’t write short summaries. Although it may just be because of the intensity of this episode. I mean I had to follow through with every single detail to feel satisfied with the review. Obsessive compulsive much? xO

Anyway this episode should mark the end of Zero’s self pity. I wonder what they’re going to do now that Zero got his will to live back. I’m kinda curious about how they’re going to solve Zero’s problem.

Kaname on the other hand seems to be torn between letting Yuuki go and trying to keep her for himself. Not much has been revealed to us about our mysterious pureblood, yet, but somewhere down the road they’ll eventually have to flesh him out a bit. Touga is probably the easiest to decipher though, I mean it was pretty obvious that he missed on purpose with his whole I-shot-you-to-teach-you-life-lessons do. xD

So, I’m getting really pumped up about this series. This episode especially made me feel that Vampire Knights has the potential to be one of the top contenders for this season. Not much of a surprise eh?

Allison To Lillia – 6

May 19, 2008

Okay, so Fiona is the princess of Ikstova, and a survivor of the assassination of the Ikstovan royal family? Not that I didn’t see that coming but oh well.
Allison To Lillia

Summary;

I notice the summaries I make are seriously too long, so I’ll try to cut them short. xD

So, Allison and Wil wake up in a basement of some sort and escape through a skylight and take cover in a garage. Meanwhile, Benedict is moving through the village but notices armed men walking about. He finds out that they’re looking for two escaped prisoners with details matching those of Allison and Wil. Eventually, he manages to find them and they try to flee the village.

On the way they see Fiona being asked to stay in her own house for her own safety by one of the guards. Benedict asks her for shelter after the guard is gone. At night, Fiona asks them to take her to the capital once again saying that she’ll turn them over to the guards if they don’t. Later, they exchange information. Allison explains that she and Wil were wrongly accused, drugged and captured while we find out that Fiona is living alone. Benedict says to wait until the next day before they leave, because the snowstorm will make the way dangerous.

Fiona explains that her real name is Francesca and that shes actually the princess of Ikstova. She wants to go to Owen Nihito’s speech to declare that she is alive, and a member of the royal family. She later asks Benedict if he’d ever shot anyone and if he could teach her how to use a gun. Benedict just says that it’s not something anyone would want to learn and yes, he has killed before. Benedict hands her gun over to WIl. After a little hassle they all go to bed.

The next day, after breakfast they sneak out through the snowfields under a white sheet, so to camouflage themselves. As they follow the route to the Aerosun, they see a guard. Benedict pretends to be Fiona’s captive to get them all past the guard but at the last moment Benedict punches the guy in the gut, taking him down. However, before he collapses he sounds the alarm and the entire village is alerted.

Fiona defends them, asking them to leave her alone. The village chief asks her to leave the three to them. Instead, Fiona reveals her true identity to the villagers. The old lady who drugged Allison and Wil in the previous episode asks her if her grandfather told her about her true identity and what she’s going to do when she leaves. After she tells them her purpose, the village chief allows her to leave saying that she’s now 20 and should chose what to do herself. He entrusts her care to Benedict, the hero.

Everyone then bids Fiona and the gang farewell and they leave on Benedict’s aerosun. After reminiscing on her life in the village, Fiona, Wil, Allison and Benedict head for the Kunst the capital of Ikstova.

Summary;

Not a bad episode. It seems that I was mistaken about the village. I initially thought they would be organizing a coup d’etat but it seems they were only secretive to protect Fiona’s true identity. Fiona’s Valley indeed. They did let her go a little too easily though.

One thing bothers me though. Aren’t Allison and Wil a bit too relaxed for their own good? Maybe not Wil so much, but Allison doesn’t seemed bothered by the fact that she’s being hunted by a gang of gun totting villagers. However as I said in my review of episode 5, I really like their small talk. Not only is it great character development, we get to know more about their customs, personal quirks and some world info at the same time.

Anyway, I think I should start calling Allison To Lilla; Allison, Lillia and Tea! After all, they do drink tea every episode. Whats not to like about it though? It has more caffiene than coke! xD