Concrete Revolutio Episode 1: Nope, Not Kansas Anymore!
Anime / October 31, 2015

The first episode of Concrete Revolutio, “The Witch Girl of Tokyo,” recently aired — and I think I understood what happened! What Happened The show seems to have two distinct timelines distinguished by Jirou Hitoyoshi’s attitude and attire. The opening seems to be in the present, when the polite and scarfed Jirou first meets Kikko Hoshino. She’s waitressing as a cover for her real identity, which we find out is the Witch Girl of Tokyo. Before we get a chance to get our bearings, the scene shifts a little less than 5 years in the future, where Jirou, now callous with a red kerchief, appears to be Kikko’s enemy. She confronts him and tells him that she’s twenty as he bails out of the train. This was before the opening credits! This kind of frenetic pace characterizes Concrete Revolutio. We return to the first timeline to meet three more characters. Members of the Superhuman Bureau Daishi Akita and Hyouma Yoshimura are listening to Emi Kino lecture about a rare star, which a Japanese Professor Onda had just discovered. Apparently, there are factions that wanted to derail his efforts, because the scene switches back to the restaurant, where Jirou and Kikko watch a man in a pin-striped suit approach Onda. We learn pin-stripe man is an…

The Asterisk War Episode 2: A Most Impressive Sword
Anime / October 27, 2015

Titled “Ser Versta,” episode 2 starts off giving us some background on Amagiri Ayato and his sister. What Happened? The show starts out with a flashback, where Amagiri Haruka has to console her little brother, Ayato, because he got in trouble for fighting to defend her. She tells him his power is too great, and he’ll need to find his purpose in life before he can responsibly use it. Based on his talk with Claudia Enfield last week, Ayato still hasn’t found his purpose. After helping Julis van Rissefeld get rid of Lester (remember last week’s final scene?), Ayato learns that the princess is competing solely for money — and that she has no friends! While in class, Ayato discovers that an old friend of his, Sasamiya Saya, is a classmate, and she’s attending school to help promote her father’s weapons business. Julis agrees to show Ayato around the campus and town to pay her debt to him. Before they can leave, Claudia stops by and lets Ayato know that he can check out his sister’s (supposed) sword tomorrow. Claudia’s feminine wiles — and the danger those wiles will affect Ayato — encourages Julis and Saya to join forces to give Ayato the grand…

The Asterisk War Episode 1: And So It Begins!
Anime / October 24, 2015

Review The Fall 2015 season’s underway, and on Crunchyroll, one of the shows I’m watching is The Asterisk War. Episode 1, “Witch of the Resplendent Flames,” starts with a bespectacled beauty fighting a huge masked man in an arena. Maybe an underground fight? We later find out she’s Amagiri Haruka, the main character’s sister, and she initially holds her own (I swear their swords sound just like light sabres from a famous movie franchise!). Up until the end, anyway. The last we see of them, the man’s encased in some kind of chained cone of light, and Haruka is lying in a growing pool of her own blood. Her last words were, “I’m sorry… Ayato…” That’s her brother’s name. He’s the main character. The next scene used exposition to tell us that the Invertia happened and upset the world’s political balance of power. The Integrated Empire Foundation, made up of lots of businesses, took over. The Invertia also created the Genestella, people who have special combat skills. They will fight in entertainment battles called Festa. The story starts in Rikka, the Academy on the Water, which is commonly known as Asterisk. Hence the show’s title! Gotta say I’ve never been a fan of…

The Fall 2015 Anime Slate: Funimation Edition
Anime / October 17, 2015

During the Fall season, I got to watch Overlord. I’m still sad that there aren’t any new episodes, at least for now, but I can’t dwell in the past. Here’re the series I’m going to watch on Funimation for the Fall 2015 season: CONCRETE REVOLUTIO: This series… Well, it… Okay, umm… All right. To start with, in a review of the first episode, Anime News Network’s Theron Martin gave the show an i or an imaginary number on a scale of 1 to 5. I think he was right! According to Wikia and other numerous sources, the show takes place about 20 years after World War II in an alternate timeline. Beings from multiple dimensions/worlds come together on Earth. Some are good, some not so much. One of the main characters is Kikki Hoshino, who, when she’s not working as a waitress, is a magical girl. She meets Jirou Hitoyoshi, a member of the Superhuman Bureau, in one of the three timelines in the first episode. She’s been working with him for years in another part of the plot; she’s his enemy in a third. The plot jumps forward and back and forward several times. A little hard to follow, but not impossible. The…

The Fall 2015 Anime Slate: Crunchyroll Edition
Anime / October 12, 2015

I’m still getting over my sadness that season one of Gate is over. But no show, however much fun, lasts forever. I have to bravely move on! So, here’re the shows I’m watching on Crunchyroll for the Fall 2015 season: The Asterisk War: A transfer student (does it seem that a lot of anime series have a transfer student?) arrives on campus and finds a handkerchief. Instead of returning it the old fashioned way using an elevator, he uses his three dimensional navigation ability to leap through the open window a couple of dozen stories up. Of course, there was a woman changing. By this time, I was wondering if I wanted to watch a show that felt so cliche. The story started the gather steam, and my resolve wavered. It was the last scene that hooked me. Ayato Amagir, the main character, watched Julis-Alexia von Riessfelt, the woman whose dressing he had interrupted, power up in response to a challenge. Avato said, “Julis… Julis-Alexia von Risselft… Clad in flames … The witch of the resplendent flames… ” Frankly, I’m a sucker for such romantic, poetic imagery. So, I’m watching this series. Beautiful Bones: Shoutarou Tatewaki, a high school student, befriends an eccentric…

Overlord Episode 13: The End of a Great Season — and the Setup for a Second?
Anime / October 4, 2015

“Player VS Non Player Character,” the last episode of Overlord’s first season, answered some questions but hinted at the answers for others. I’ve waited to post anything to give myself some time to digest the episode. I’m not sure the extra time helped! The episode breaks down into three sections. Unsurprisingly, we start the episode where the last one left off: with Shalltear Bloodfallen facing off against Ainz Ooal Gown amid the devastation their battle had wrought on the land around them. Confident in her performance, Shalltear asked him if he had any last words, and he calmly explained to her how she had fallen into his trap. And then he demonstrated how. He used the weapons his friends, other “supreme beings,” had left behind. That included Houyi’s Bow, the weapon of Peroroncino — Shalltear’s creator. Until she saw the bow, she still seemed confident that she might be able to win the battle. After the arrow of fire struck her, it was downhill for her from there. To her credit, she never gave up. She’s a heck of a character! But even she couldn’t stand up to a “supreme being.” Before Ainz administers the finishing blows, however, the narrative returns to Nazarick where Albedo,…

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