Baccano! : critique


To summarize my experience in one word
CRAZY!
The craziest anime I’ve seen till now.

Before I start, an advice to potential viewers who want to start seeing this show.
Do not judge the genre of this anime based on the opening you see (its not about gambling or Halloween for that matter) as I was one of them. The first time I stopped watching the series after watching the opening.

Lets start by taking a look at the story..
One of the best stories told in non-linear fashion that I have ever seen. The best part is the non-linear story-telling doesn’t bog the story or the viewer down. The story concentrates on what mostly happened during three years – 1930, 1931 and 1932. It connects seemingly unrelated events to build a story that is larger than anything you would’ve imagined in the beginning. So much so that you begin anticipating as to how things reached to the point of where they are in the future from where it was in the past.
The editing done on this series is also one of the best – gives nothing way and carries the sense of mystery throughout.
Also there is humor which always left me grinning (especially scenes which had Isaac Dian and Miria Harvent; Isaac and Miria continue to spread happiness unconsciously wherever they go) and some scenes really make you laugh out loud.
That’s all I can say about the story without giving out any spoilers.

Characters
Has the craziest cast of characters I’ve seen. And the number of characters is pretty large too. Again this doesn’t bog the story down. In fact by the end of the series you will remember the name of all significant characters and their quirks. Also the characters remain etched in your memories long after you’ve finished watching the show.

Animation and Music
Neither is the animation lacking in any way nor is it over the top. It is enough to tell the story, with nothing remarkable standing out.
The action scenes are executed very well. The violence is plenty and all of it had a realistic and raw feeling to it.
The background music is combination of jazz and sometimes the high pitch from the symphony which stands out as the theme music of Baccano!(usually comes around the half-way break and the ending of the episodes)
Overall the background music for scenes never felt misplaced and always felt right – which is all you need. I almost never skipped through the opening sequence as the tempo of the jazz just seemed to fit the craziness of Baccano!

Overall I rate it 9.5/10
A masterpiece which I would whole-heartedly recommend anyone who has already watched some anime.


a critique by Prashanth Sunder

Advertisements

Takemitsu Zamurai : critique


Takemetsu Zamurai counts amongst one of the most beautiful and relaxing series that I’ve ever read, maybe it was the lazy setting of the edo period, maybe it was calm and relax attitude of the protagonist or maybe it was the talking animals. Reading this manga was a joyous experience.

The characters of this manga are simple yet eloquent and contain amazing depth. The interaction of one character with the environment or with another characters is very elegant, warm and natural specially the friendship of Senou and Kankichi in the beginning helps you in settling into the manga. The art, specially the human anatomy, might be considered mediocre by some, but I felt that it was surreal as it provided that folklore like feeling to the manga. It was like looking at some painting from edo period which is telling the story of Senou and his life. The battles were interestingly drawn and were easy to comprehend.Overall, this manga is a work of art, and I feel happy that I read it.

Kill la Kill


“A young girl arrives at a school of super-humans to find out the truth behind her father’s murder.” – IMDb

Pretty bland and conventional plot for an anime, nothing wrong there. I picked the series on a whim clicked by an intriguing review at MAL which went something like “so i watched the first episode of Kill la Kill, and, i like it”. This is where i went like “well that escalated quickly”. Now after having followed through all the episodes I rest my verdict on the fact that Kill La Kill is more than meets the eyes.

Matoi Ryouko invades Honnouji Academy wielding some kind of scissor-sword opposing the majestic Student Council President Satsuki Kiryuin and what have we here ? a talking highschool sailor uniform, some camel toe shots, bouncing tits and pervading nudity and what not, almost like another Ikki Tousen attributed with whacky animation and gags. Fan-service gone wild, Perhaps that is all one might perceive at first glance, but a prominent inspection might reveal it to be far more than that. Because pervasive fanservice is the very substance in the series ! Continue reading

A briefing on experimental manga


ax cover

Ax cover

To highlight, away from the conventional clutches of Commercialization there were minds in Japan that could pervade on wonders akin to Will Eisner, Dave Mazzucchelli, Joe Sacco or contemporaries like Sarnath Banerjee. People who went away from the commercialized markets to probe their pens into jotting down the unconventional. Experimenting on several acoustic art styles that would echo expressionist ideas, and themes that knew no bizarre boundaries.

Although their Graphic Novels can be categorized as having seinen/mature content over the internet, but originally they went out of the demographic shackles of shounen, seinen or Josei as they germinated in the libraries dating from Post-war Japan as an underground movement of sorts. The initiative was taken by Yashihiro Tatsumi when he decided to provide the country with a market which would appeal to the crowd that appreciates magical realism and other literary aesthetics. Though the market was misunderstood and gained notoriety among conscious parental circles who stereotyped drawings with speech bubbles as bad influence to the children and more so because of the lewd content at times. But there were significant number of adolescent readers that protested against these tectonic calamities which were up to shake off the foundation. Continue reading

Tatami Galaxy


Rahul Ghosh

‘Tatami’, the cultural knowledge of which probably is visually clear to everyone who have been accustomed to watching anime for a while now, you’ll know when i say that it is a type of flooring material used in Traditional styled Japanese houses. The word is actually derived from the verb ‘tatamu’ which means, to fold or pile. Now, placing the word side by side particularly with the word ‘Galaxy’ definitely has a connotative implication of ‘claustrophobia’ which i guess most people did perceive. Yes, the shows throws the protagonist’s life as living in a 4.5 tatami room, almost like in a huge cube and the events occurring all around his college life are directly relate-able to the claustrophobic experiences he comprehends while expounding in the aspects of the space.

The show exhibits traits of dark comedy, much relate-able to the anime ‘Sayonara Zetsubo sensi’, heck even the protagonists look way similar. Though Itoshiko is a character who completely taints himself to pessimistic way of life exhibiting suicidal tendencies, the protagonist here is ideologically much more alive and doesn’t live by tending to hang himself everyday, nor is his life psychologically contorted to the point of living every second in horror within the walls of his apartment, as seen in the films of Roman Polanski who also dealt with the theme of claustrophobia. The show also perhaps is relate-able to the anime ‘Welcome to NHK’ which portrays the life of a shut in/NEET, but the line differentiating both the series is on the level of layered and visual symbolisms which is the main concern for this series, a symbolic succession resulting in an exhalting fulfillment. Continue reading

The Skull Man


Vishal Gaur

This anime is based on the manga “The Skullman” by Kazuhiko Himamoto but it wasn’t his original idea. Kazuhiko being an avid fan of Shotaro Ishinomori, just revived his original work “Skullman” and created a story around those original 3 chapters created by Ishinomori. Ishinomori made this manga while working on “Kamen Rider” which is a classic and highly successful series of that time, original “Skullman” ended up being the building block for KR. Continue reading

Serial Experiments Lain


A review by Rahul Ghosh

Lain Iwakura is the sort of ordinary girl who isn’t much tech savvy in the era of computers but a string of events consequently leads her to get devoured by the world of ‘wired’. So much for a plot summary, for the rest Lain lives up to it’s name as a bonafied mindfuck of a series.

Speaking of a theme or central idea, well Lain doesn’t have one… to be precise the theme is not bound by any single strand of interpretation for what i recon Lain throws at us several dimensions of symbolism, at almost every scene. Most of the time you’ll be just blankly staring at the screen going “What the fuck is happening ?”, yes.. Lain is just Incomprehensible at almost every second, and honestly I wouldn’t recommend watching the series to anyone Well here’s my take on the series : Continue reading