Forty-seventh week of 2019 edition!
This is a Crow’s eye view of the posts that caught my attention this week. I especially look for posts that celebrate amazing moments in anime or otherwise blow me away with their wit and charm. Every week I check hundreds of sites, and I’m humbled by the quality and volume of posts that the ani-blogging community creates! I hope this article helps you find some of those works!
What sites do I check every week? You can see the list of the sites here!
This week, I reviewed the sites in alphabetical order (A to Z).
Brace yourself. I’m about to say something that might shock you. Ready? I really liked Demon Slayer. Aren’t you glad I prepared you for that? In all seriousness, this site is about celebrating anime, so it’s not likely I’m going to call attention to series that I can’t celebrate! But even with a series I like as much as Demon Slayer, I would be disingenuous if I denied there were some things about the series that I couldn’t embrace. The subject is well known, but it’s often stated without discussion — without attempting to achieve a deeper understanding of what might be going on. That’s what I liked about Trevor Richardson’s recent post on Anime Feminist. It not only clearly stated the concern. It explored the implications. Understanding is always better than making assumptions!
Midnight occult civil servants was an interesting show. While I was reviewing the series for my Best in Show series, I looked forward to each new episode. Despite not having the best animation I’d ever scene, the show was just pleasant. Until it wasn’t. Until it got good. There were several episodes towards the end (like episode 10) where the stakes went through the roof — at exactly the same time the themes crystalized and collided. That sounds pretty esoteric or inaccessible, doesn’t it? Sometimes I see the world like that, and it’s hard to get my perspective across. That’s why I so happy to Yon Nyan’s post on BiblioNyan. They said exactly and precisely what I was trying to articulate: precisely what made the show so special. And so relevant — no, so vitally relevant — to our world today.
Did you ever see Criss Angel perform magic? His first trick I ever saw was him throwing a playing card through a windshield. I also saw him levitate people — in front of dozens of witnesses — from one rooftop to another. Of course, it was all sleight of hand. There’s no real magic, as far as we can see. But sometimes, it’s fun not to know how a trick’s done so we can get more enjoyment out of the trick. For me, fiction is exactly the opposite. Every time I see an author employ a technique, not only does it deepen my understanding of my craft, it helps me enjoy a given work even more. That’s why, once again, one of The Overage Otaku’s posts caught my eye on Confessions of an Overage Otaku. This post describes — beautifully, I might add — how Holo and Lawrence’s relationship develops in Spice and Wolf. It’s one of those posts that leaves me with the feeling of “some faith in humanity restored.”
There are certain subjects that act like trip-wires for me. Treatment of disabled individuals is one of those. I think I’ve mentioned it before, but just to give you an idea of where I’m coming from, my son is deaf. When he was young, I wanted to see what kind of world he could expect to navigate, so I put on his hearing aids and went to the store. I have never been more disappointed in humans in my life. The experience cemented in me a conviction to do what I could to help those living with disabilities. That’s why I was so excited to find this post by Elisabeth on The Little Anime Blog. It’s a great survey of how those with disabilities have been portrayed in anime — and the roots of some of those portrayals in Japanese culture. Great conclusion, too.
Okay, I know what you’re thinking (or at least, I suspect!). You’re probably thinking, “Crow, dude. You’re just hawking Demon Slayer because you and Irina (from I Drink and Watch Anime) reviewed the series! I mean, this is the second post you’ve highlighted about the series this week! Could you possibly be any more of a click whore?” First, yes, I could be more of a click whore and no, I’m not just talking about Demon Slayer because of our collaboration review! It’s because the series was so danged enjoyable! Don’t believe me? Need more evidence? How about this post by TheSakuraSunrise from Sakura Sunrise? The post is a thorough examination of what makes this series so special. Do you want to know what I found most convincing? The author tried hard to find flaws in the series in the name of objectivity — and just couldn’t do it. The series was just that well constructed. That’s quite a testament, I think!