Darling in the Franxx is a mess of good ideas marred by poor pacing and an unwillingness to make the most of its material. On the surface the premise is absurd. Teenagers who don’t know the first thing about sexual relationships due to never getting educated on the subject, are raised to pilot the Franxx mecha in male-female pairs. This involves the girl crouching bent on all fours over with a display on her back and handles attached to the butt of her uniform that the boy sitting behind her uses to pilot. Darling is not subtle with its imagery.
The series follows five pairs of pilots, but for the most part it’s Hiro and Zero’s show. For some reason Hiro fails at being a pilot for anyone other Zero, despite his high aptitude scores, and Zero is a hybrid that is both human and klaxosaur (the klaxosaurs being the kaiju the Franxx were created to fight).
I loved the first episode of Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku. It was pitch perfect, and easily relatable. Narumi starts her new office job and wants to keep it on the down low that she’s an incredible otaku (nerd). The whole reason she changed jobs is that she used to date someone at her old work and he broke up with her after finding out how much of a geek she was. Narumi is not just a casual fan who happens to enjoy cosplayers and boys’ love manga. She’s pretty hardcore about her hobbies and she’s also an amateur comic artist; one that regularly goes to conventions and sells her own work.
Her attempts to fly under the radar go awry though, when she runs into her childhood friend, Hirotaka, who also works there. He’s well aware that she enjoys video games and loves manga because they used to play together, and being rather blunt, he all but outs her in front of her new coworkers until she interrupts that they really should catch up after work. (It later turns out that those two particular coworkers are otaku too, though the rest of the office is not.)
written by Laurie Tom
What if your reality isn’t real? It should be, but you start to notice things that don’t make sense and you can’t ignore it.
That’s the situation that Ritsu Shikishima finds himself in when he hears an odd voice through his phone, and discovers the class representative for the graduating third year students is the exact same person as the class representative for the incoming first years. And he’s not the only one to find something amiss. His classmate Mifue comes home and discovers her mom has become a literally different person overnight, with a different appearance and personality.
The Legend of the Galactic Heroes: Die Neue These is based on the epic 10-volume novel series by Yoshiki Tanaka (which, by the way, is being released in English at a pace of 2-3 books a year, so we’ll eventually have the whole thing in a couple years).
In the far future, humanity has colonized the stars and formed the Galactic Federation. But eventually a politician seized control of the government and declared himself emperor. Some of his subjects rebelled and escaped to form the Free Planets Alliance, a new republic that is not recognized by the Galactic Empire, and the two factions have waged war for over a hundred years.
Real Girl has what is likely a cringe-inducing premise for most women. High school boy Hikari Tsutsui is a introverted anime/gaming nerd who can barely stand being around “normal” people because they make fun of him for never outgrowing his hobbies. It doesn’t help that his all time favorite series features an elementary school aged … Continue reading Anime Review: Real Girl
This summer’s anime offerings are more hit or miss than usual. There’s only one series I’m truly certain I’ll watch no matter what, and it’s possible I’ll dip back into continuing series from last spring, specifically Persona 5: The Animation and Tokyo Ghoul:re which looks like it will eventually finish out the series.
Hakata Tonkatsu Ramens has a ridiculous premise, but once you buy into it, it’s a lot of fun. Hakata City, within the Fukuoka Prefecture, is city so populated with hitmen and other criminal elements that they’ve essentially organized into businesses. Not public facing, mind, but this is the kind of show where in the first episode a hitman finds out someone else has already killed his target, because, well, hitmen are just that easy to hire. (I imagine people with enemies don’t last long in Hakata City.)
I really wanted to like Kokkoku. I really did.
The setup in the very first episode has a lot of promise. Juri Yukawa is a young woman, newly graduated from college, and she’s from a middle class family that has fallen on hard times. Her mother is still working, but her father has been laid off. Her grandfather is retired, her older brother is unemployed, and her older sister is a single mother with a child she had with a man who has since exited her life.
All four generations of the Yukawas live in the same house and Juri feels like she needs to get out of town before she ends up going nowhere like almost every other adult in her family. She knows she’s not that special. None of her job interviews locally have resulted in any offers.
A lot has changed since last year. Amazon’s Anime Strike service has been shut down and everything previously streaming on it has been rolled into its baseline Amazon Prime service. While this does not help fans without Amazon Prime, American fans are no longer being charged a few extra dollars for the same content their Canadian counterparts have been getting as part of their baseline service.
Additionally, HIDIVE is coming into its own as an alternate streaming service with its own exclusive licenses. It doesn’t have a free streaming alternative, but the monthly subscription is affordable and their library is deep with several exclusives.
I didn’t expect to like Juni Taisen: Zodiac War as much as I did, but that said, it’s not going to be like that for everyone. The show is a throwback to the more violent anime of the 1990s in that there are lots of blood and guts, with possibly one of the most creative and disgusting ways I’ve ever seen to hide a corpse, but at the same time the series is very talky and ultimately depressing.