My 5 Favorite Theme Songs from Spring 2017
Anime , List / June 19, 2017

Introduction I enjoy listening to anime themes when I’m driving to and from work. Every new season, I listen to the openings and ending themes in the hopes I’ll find new ones to add to my collection. The Spring season of 2017 had some real keepers! In the hopes of sharing how much I enjoy this music with you, here are my five favorite OPs or EDs from Spring 2017: Note: I limited the scope of my list to only the shows I mentioned in my Spring 2017 previews part 1 and part 2. Number 5: Alice & Zouroku’s ED The song “Chant” by Toi Toy Toi is a spritely, happy song. It features animation of a slightly older Sana skipping a few inches above the ground as she looks around at the world go by. You can hear an excerpt of the song from Toi Toy Toi on YouTube. You can hear more of the song in the background for the series promo, which is also on YouTube. If you really like it, you can buy it from CDJapan. I’m not an affiliate of theirs (though maybe I should look into that!), but I buy from them frequently, and…

Aliens, Gears, Game Creation, and Worlds in Collision: Spring 2017 Anime Preview Part II!
Anime , List / April 17, 2017

That period between seasons so often makes me anxious. Will I find anything I want to watch? Or more likely, how will I choose what not to watch because I don’t have time (having a real life and all)? Not sure we’re going to get anything with the philosophical or theological depth of Saga of Tanya the Evil or the social commentary of Concrete Revolutio, but who knows — Re:Creators shows promise! This season has at least eight shows that I’m really looking forward to. Here’s the second four: KADO: The Right Answer Shown on Crunchyroll Thursdays 10:00am EDT What do you get when The Day the Earth Stood Still goes on a date with Arpeggio of Blue Steel, hits it off, gets married, and has a child? You get something that would look like like KADO: The Right Answer! But instead of the robot Gort we get Kado, and instead of the ambassador Klaatu we get Yaha-kui zaShunina. The animation, in terms of beauty of the models, fluidity of movement, and polished look comes straight out of Arpeggio of Blue Steel. So much so that when I compared the companies involved on Anime News Network (click here for KADO and here for Arpeggio),  I was surprised there…

Titans, Heroes, Queens, and Swords: Spring 2017 Anime Preview Part I!
Anime , List / April 11, 2017

That period between seasons so often makes me anxious. Will I find anything I want to watch? Or more likely, how will I choose what not to watch (having a real life and all)? Not sure we’re going to get anything with the philosophical or theological depth of Saga of Tanya the Evil or the social commentary of Concrete Revolutio, but who knows? I might be surprised. Plus, this season has at least eight shows that I’m really looking forward to. Here’s the first four: Attack on Titan (season 2) Shown on Crunchyroll Saturdays 10:30am EDT If there’s a series that’s received more press this season, I don’t know what it is. The first season was a huge success in terms of its sheer adrenaline rush. The writers were masters at cliffhangers! And so far, the second season (we’re up to its second episode as I write this) is picking up right where the first left off. Literally, in this case. Seriously: the first episode happens just hours after the ending of the first season. There are three things that struck me about this season. First, we meet a gigantic beast titan that talks. Not only does it talk, it’s very articulate….

Flowers Already? Winter 2017 Anime Season Review Part II
Anime , List / April 10, 2017

Important! There may be a few incidental spoilers here, so please be careful! Winter 2017 gave us some enjoyable series. The ratios of series I started to those I dropped was pretty good: I only dropped two! One them, Seiren, would have been in this post. I dropped that show not because I thought it was terrible, but because I didn’t think it was compelling. Sure, Hikari Tsuenki was sexy and fun to watch, but I just wasn’t that interested in her relationship to Shouichi Kamita, who didn’t strike me as a very strong male lead. If you liked Seiren, you might be interested in its soundtrack: I not only finished the other three shows in this review — I thoroughly enjoyed them! And here they are: Interviews with Monster Girls This show starts with a simple premise: some humans are affected by genetic conditions and become vampires, succubi, snow women, or a dullahan. Historically, society not only pushed those folks aside; they were often killed. Modern Japanese society’s a little more polite about such differences, but there’s an unstated backdrop of exclusion at the beginning of this show. Instead of following where that dark path could have led, we meet Tetsuo Takahashi, a…

Flowers Already? Winter 2017 Anime Season Review Part I
Anime , List / April 4, 2017

I’ll try to avoid most spoilers, but there may still be a few remaining. So please be cautious! This was another interesting season! Of the nine or ten series I watched, I only dropped a handful, and one of them would have been in this review: Schoolgirl Strikers. I only made it through the first episode, and even though I covered it in Part I of the season preview, I won’t cover it again here. Speaking of dropping series: I tried to watch Hand Shakers. Within a few seconds, I began to feel a little queasy. Before I got three minutes in, I had to turn it off. I only mention this because it’s the first time I had a violent and negative physical reaction to an anime! The combination of art and camera angles just hit me — hard — the wrong way! At least with Schoolgirl Strikers, the characters and plot just didn’t seem interesting. I didn’t feel ill after watching it! BTW, if you liked Schoolgirl Strikers, Amazon has some interesting merchandise, like a Nendoroid figure of Satoka you can check out: Akiba’s Trip The Animation This was a show where the protagonists have to strip the antagonists to…

The 2016 Holidays Are Gone – Must Be the Winter 2017 Anime Season! Preview Part II
Anime , List / January 17, 2017

I hope all of you enjoyed the 2016 holidays (and if you didn’t celebrate any, I hope you enjoyed the last weeks of 2016)! As hard as it is to believe, it’s time for the Winter 2017 anime season! Just as there were last season, there are a lot of good shows to choose from. If you’re interested in what fans have said they’re looking forward to, you can check out this article from Anime News Network. I got some ideas of what to watch from that list. Speaking of what I’ve watched, here’s part II of what I’m watching this season: Seiren Crunchyroll; Saturdays at 1:00AM EST According to MyAnimeList, this show follows Shouichi Kamita and “depicts his pure relationship with three different heroines. Each story is the unique and mutual memory between him and the heroine.” I’m glad I read that (I think), because not having been exposed to this series before, I thought the story would be about Hikari Tsuenki and her relationship to Kamita. The story starts out with Kamita having turned in his career aspirations to his teacher. She was naturally concerned that he said he wanted to be a horned beetle (I’m not sure he took the…

The 2016 Holidays Are Gone – Must Be the Winter 2017 Anime Season! Preview Part I
Anime , List / January 9, 2017

I hope all of you enjoyed the 2016 holidays (and if you didn’t celebrate any, I hope you enjoyed the last weeks of 2016)! As hard as it is to believe, it’s time for the Winter 2017 anime season! Just as there were last season, there are a lot of good shows to choose from. If you’re interested in what fans have said they’re looking forward to, you can check out this article from Anime News Network. I got some ideas of what to watch from that list. Speaking of what I’ve watched, here’s part I of what I’m watching this season: Akiba’s Trip The Animation Crunchyroll; Wednesdays at 9:00AM EST Oh, Japan! Based on a video game called Akiba’s Trip: Undead and Undressed, this show’s premise is that the good guys need to strip the bad guys because sunlight defeats them. Or air pressure. Or something. The point is, combat stripping is involved. I guess the success of Keijo!!!!!!!! had emboldened some studios… Our hero is Tamotsu Denkigai. He’s enjoying a day out in Akiba with his sister, Niwaka Denkigai, when he gets a text that a rare figure’s been released. He rushes to the nearby store only to fight over the…

The Fall 2016 Season’s Done — What Delivered? What Whiffed? Part II
Anime , List / December 29, 2016

The Fall 2016 season offered not only a wide variety of titles, but a wide range of performance within those titles! Here’s part II of my Fall 2016 writeup: Note: You can find Part I here. Drifters Occultic;Nine Brave Witches Drifters Verdict: Delivered! What do you get when you mix a fantasy world with elves, dwarves, goblins, dragons, with warrior figures pulled from from different periods of Earth’s history? You get Drifters, of course! There are three main protagonists in the story. First is Toyohisa Shimazu, who was an amazing swordsman. He died in our world in 1600 and ended up in the fantasy universe. When he arrived, he was still critically injured from the battle on Earth. Two young elves defined the law to bring him to the ruined castle where the two other protagonists had taken up residence. The elder of these two was Nobunaga Oda, a famous leader in Japanese history, who had worked to unify Japan under one leader. He died (i.e., left Earth) in 1582, and Shimazu was aware of Oda’s exploits. The third and youngest was Yoichi Suketaka Nasu, the last son in a huge family, who was an amazing archer who died in the late 1100s. Gradually,…

The Fall 2016 Season’s Done — What Delivered? What Whiffed? Part I
Anime , List / December 26, 2016

The Fall 2016 season offered not only a wide variety of titles, but a wide range of performance within those titles! Here’s part I of my Fall 2016 writeup: can find Part II hereNote: You . Hibike! Euphonium 2 Shuumatsu no Izetta WWW.WAGNARIA!! Bubuki Buranki: Hoshi no Kyojin Hibike! Euphonium 2 Verdict: Delivered! The second season of Sound! Euphonium may not have had the narrative subtly of the first season (as discussed in this post on Unnecessary Exclamation Mark!), but it still had plenty of dramatic goodness to reward its viewers. The season focuses on Kumiko Oumae, a euphonium player, as she not only tries to navigate the normal challenges of being a high school student, but also to practice her band instrument hard enough to help the concert band make it to the nationals. There were plenty of great emotional moments, like (in the episode Awakening Oboe, beginning around 9:30) when Mizore Yoroizuka goes missing during school, and Kumiko finds her sobbing over the possibility that Nozomi Kasaki might rejoin the band. Kumiko assumed Mizore hated Nozomi; but it was the opposite. They had been best friends before, but during a shakeup in the band (referred to in the first season), Nozomi…

Make the 2016 Holiday Festive — Anime Style!
Anime , List / November 23, 2016

Wondering what to get an anime fan who’s on your holiday shopping list? Here’s a list of series that I’ve personally enjoyed. The links represent my Amazon affiliate account, so if you buy using these links, you can bask in the glow of the warm feeling of helping keep Crow’s World of Anime alive and well! Quick Reference Comedy D-Frag and Monthly Girls Nozaki-Kun Adventure Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet and Ergo Proxy Romance Toradora and Engaged to the Unidentified Comedy D-Frag Kenji Kazama wants to make a name for himself as the toughest delinquent in school. The Game Creation Club (provisional)‘s members have different plans. Just what those plans are isn’t certain, and I’m not convinced they even know! But when Kazama tries to put out a fire that the club members started in their room, they attack him with strange and fictional powers like Roka Shibasaki’s Moe Moe attack. This series has a lot of fast-paced visual humor, as well as hilarious references to games, manga, and other anime series. It’s an interesting (though hardly deep) plot as well. It culminates in a showdown between the Game Creation Club (provisional) and the real Game Creation Club. The boss battle involves a vicious twin-tail attack. Really!…

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