Archive for May, 2010

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood 59 – Blinded by the Light

Posted in Fullmetal Alchemist with tags , on 05/31/2010 by Shinmaru

In a result that honestly shocked me, I prevailed against Blogsuki in the second round of the Aniblog Tourney. I have no doubt that if Jason took this whole thing seriously and mobilized his voters, he would have trounced me (not that I would be too upset; he’s been at this for years — I can only hope for that sort of longevity!); however, I nonetheless appreciate the support from everyone who reads this site. I try my best to provide writing that is of interest to people, so I suppose I am doing something right! Anyway, enough of that. On to the non-self-congratulatory part of this post people actually care about.

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Durarara!! 20 – Played

Posted in Durarara!! with tags on 05/29/2010 by Shinmaru

Well, my positive feelings about Kida from the last episode did not last very long!

To be fair, it’s still uncertain whether Kida is yet willing to launch into a full-on war with Dollars, especially now that he knows Mikado is the group’s leader; Kida is at least telling the Yellow Scarves to gather definitive proof about a link between Dollars and the Slashers, even if, you know, nobody in his group is listening to him. Change happens, the loyalties of the group shifts, Kida is operating in a way that does not put him in the mindset to maintain control and, even though he is trying to act as cautiously as possible, Kida is still getting played by Izaya.

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Infinite Ryvius – Hitting the Groove

Posted in Infinite Ryvius, Random Shit with tags on 05/26/2010 by Shinmaru

There’s a lot I like about Infinite Ryvius: The story never lets up and always has some tension boiling beneath the surface; the characters are memorable, interesting and always give you something to think about, even if they are not particularly likable all the time; the series itself looks pretty good despite being more than 10 years old; and so on.

But what I enjoy most is the show’s pure style and flow. The storytelling is so smooth, and it unfolds like clockwork; I can’t recall a single moment in Infinite Ryvius where I thought I was watching some tedious bullshit that added nothing to the show. Really, the choice of hip hop as the dominant background music (along with the eerie electronic songs) is genius not only because it gives the series a unique flavor (I don’t know if Ryvius is the first TV anime to utilize hip hop to such a large extent, but it did come out before more well-known hip hop-styled anime like Samurai Champloo, Afro Samurai and Gurren Lagann), but also because the music itself reflects how everything unfolds in the series.

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Giant Killing 8 – Old Dudes

Posted in Giant Killing with tags on 05/25/2010 by Shinmaru

In this episode Kuroda felt much more sympathetic to me (Sugie always seemed like a decent guy), not so much because they get on the right path and mesh better with the team, but more so because their predicament is so familiar in competitive sports: That of the once-great (or merely good) athlete whose age and eroding skills force him to change his role on the team. It’s adapt, or hit the road, and it’s not uncommon for athletes — particularly former superstars — to have difficulty accepting this.

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Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood 58 – A Salute to the Fallen

Posted in Fullmetal Alchemist with tags , on 05/24/2010 by Shinmaru

I always get a kick out of villains doing that one last piece of assholery before biting it. A lot of the time they don’t even need to be a jerk, and it might even impede their survival — but they’re just such dickheads that they cannot help but give in to the urge to be an evil bastard one final time. Just kills me. We all know the villain is (probably) going to bite it eventually, so I like to think of it as the writer allowing the villain to get in one last memorable act before the inevitable.

It’s a bit different for Wrath, because he is actually defending himself from a (likely) shooter, but that’s the feeling I get from the above scene: He knows his time is probably up soon (combination of mortal wound and hanging in a precarious situation), and that it is probably best to keep clinging onto GreedLing, but he can’t help but chuck a “Fuck you!” knife into that Briggs soldier’s shoulder. Realistically, it’s not really going to do much except prolong his life by a few seconds since there are other soldiers ready to gun him down; however, he cannot abide by that, so the “Fuck you!” knife it is.

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Durarara!! 19 – Trollin’

Posted in Durarara!! with tags on 05/22/2010 by Shinmaru

A troll’s work never stops.

It’s funny how brazen Izaya can be when he’s doing his job. I believe only Mikado knows that Izaya lurks behind the online persona of “Kanra”, but even in front of Mikado, Izaya plants suggestions about the Slasher, Dollars and the Yellow Scarves . . . and Mikado still chats privately with Izaya for information, just because he has made himself so darn useful throughout the course of the series. That’s the power Izaya has — what he says is ugly, meant to undermine and is often full of outright lies, but nobody (save Shizuo) can bear to completely dissociate themselves with him because he is so good at mixing in the occasional truth with his lies and making them indistinguishable.

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Zaregoto – The Next Step from Philip Marlowe

Posted in Light Novels, Random Shit with tags , on 05/20/2010 by Shinmaru

Zaregoto’s amateur detective, Ii-chan, is a detective who would rather not do any detecting if he could help it, but he gets dragged into a mystery, anyway, and with his partner,  Tomo Kunagisa, Ii-chan goes through the motions of solving the seemingly impossible murders on an isolated island. But, as tends to happen, the murders give Il-chan a bit more than he bargains for.

(Some spoilers and hints about the conclusion of the first novel in the Zaregoto series are in this post, so read with caution if you have yet to take in this book.)

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Giant Killing 7 – Patience is Tough When Losing is All You Know

Posted in Giant Killing with tags on 05/19/2010 by Shinmaru

There were definitely plenty of angry message board posts after this game!

Sports are funny because so many fans are hyper-passionate about them, and thus the pressure is pushed that much higher, especially when a team has been in a rut for so long that even someone — player or coach — who is any good is immediately elevated to the status of savior in the hopes that the team finally gets the glory that has long eluded it. When everything falls into place, sports fans are extremely loyal, and the athlete or coach practically will be a god of sports in town. But when everything goes bad, especially if they’re bad from the beginning . . . then it gets ugly. Just as sports can show off the best aspects of people, they can also show their most petty.

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Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood 57 – Random Hits

Posted in Fullmetal Alchemist with tags , on 05/17/2010 by Shinmaru

There isn’t really any one thing about this episode that stands out, so bear with me while I plunge into some random thoughts.

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Durarara!! 18 – Izaya Is a Dick

Posted in Durarara!! with tags on 05/14/2010 by Shinmaru

Seriously, what a dick. Even Superman would frown upon that behavior.

That said, he’s also an impressive dick. (Though whether he has an impressive dick is not for me to say.) Whenever a villain pops up and does his or her whole Chessmaster routine, what always stands out to me is the amount of patience required to play out those plans step by step. I am patient when working with other people; however, when it comes to personal plans, patience is a word that does not exist in my vocabulary. I’m always on edge when working on something. I try my best to be thoughtful, of course, but lurking just below the surface there’s this manic energy propelling me to finish everything I write as quickly as possible. Can’t help it; it’s the way I’m wired. (Kind of ironic, too, since it usually takes me a while to write these posts. :p)

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