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

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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

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

Casshern Sins


casshern coverBack home for vacations at the end of the year, having hit some major shocks in my first semester exams I was in pursuit of refreshments. And well, Vinay  introduced me to this wonderful series.
Casshern Sins is not pretty much what it looks like if you’re seeing this picture for the first time. It is not the usual action adventure shounen-esque series you watch, but a very deep psychological series.

The plot – The world is in ruin. Robots are rusting (dying) everywhere unable to repair themselves. Signs of Human are rarely seen, which ensure their extinction. As despair consumes the heart of everyone there is one who is to blame for all the happenings : Casshern, who killed Luna, the Sun that was named Moon. Struck with amnesia as seen in the beginning of the series, Casshern walks into a journey remembering the sin he committed….

Each episode, for the most part, explores a different aspect of humanity, usually regarding hope and despair. They end up giving away moments of vain hope, enraging emotions transformed into love, rarely having scenes of unfettered rage. The first fair half of episodes are quite dull regarding the number count and how long they tried tried dragging it, makes more reasons to why it isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Whereas the second explores a mystery about how even the most unlikely chance at life can bring out the ugliest in anyone, the emotional impact creates such unrelenting momentum that these roadblocks do nothing to deter anyone from the end.
Fight scenes, at first it’s not hard to expect a depressing setting with some above average, albeit grizzly, fight scenes. However in the very next moment it turns into an introspective piece, symbolical. Just as how the very emotional depth that can be drawn from a single blue flower (As seen in the series) is uncanny, especially as it becomes an unusual personification of death, and as the glimpse of rust on the cheek of a Robot or the emptiness in their eyes bring out the terror of death as a monster which devours on every being.
In my personal opinion, this is one series hard to categorize. It is stands in it’s own as a masterpiece of artistic integrity. But then again tastes may vary, as this definitely is not everyone’s cup of tea.

P.S. I recommend this to every hardcore Evangelion fan.

8.9/10

Reviewed by Rahul Ghosh

Shigurui: Death Frenzy


shigurui

“The unstopping bitter wail is the final show of the genius swordsman. No. This is the sound of childbirth. The birth of a new monster. On this day, there were two monsters that were born.”

Some shows come into your life and turn it around. Then there are shows that possess you for life. They possess you, they breathe down on your neck and cripple your ability to emote. They pierce right through your heart and freeze you in your place. Shigurui is one such anime. Watched it 2 years back and since some of us were discussing this masterpiece yesterday and today in the evening, I just started reminiscing my unforgettable experience with the show all over again . A review is the best way I can express myself when I’m talking about Shigurui, so here goes nothing. Continue reading

ben-to cover

Ben-To



“Those who have tasted blood can never be dogs again. They won’t be able to stomach a pig’s humiliation either. It only depends on you whether you can be a wolf or not.”

Every once in a while you get a show that gatecrashes in your life, take you by the scruff of the neck and throws you into a maelstrom of adrenalin. Ben-To is one such anime and yet when you try googling it, you get search results for Ben 10! or at least that’s how it used to be not too long ago. Anyway I personally thought the show was simply terrific and I’m going to elucidate the reasons behind my admiration and love for this show.

Story

It’s totally offbeat. Based on the original light novel by the same name,the story is as bizarre as it can get for a slice-of-life/action genre. As the name suggests, this anime highlights the value of half-priced bentos in the supermarkets. The half priced bentos are exquisite, available in small numbers and are otherwise very expensive if the discounts aren’t given. Now this is exactly what leads to an indomitable hysteria for the bentos amongst the youth who are ready to fightben-to cover to death with one another over them. They literally duke it out every night just to get the delicious bentos for half price. The rule is the same as any battle. Winner takes it all. At least if not anything, the winner takes the most prized bento the house has to offer.They are known as the wolves and each area has its own superstar like The Ice Witch, The Monarch, The Wizard, The Beauty by the Lake, Hentai/Wanko(Barky) [ROFLMAO!!!!!], Orthros etc. Sato (hentai) and Yarizui (The Ice Witch) are the protagonists. Sato’s life changes forever the Continue reading

Break Blade


Plot

Rygart Arrow is one in a million – he is an ‘unsorcerer’, one of the few people completely lacking the ability to use the quartz stones used as an energy source for everything in this world.

This status has made him an outcast and an object of scorn, leaving him unable to work machinery, fire a gun, or even light a lamp without aid. His father had desperate hopes that sending him to a military academy might awaken some power in him after all, but no such miracle occured.
Rygart has since since become a farmer on the isolated outskirts of the Country of Krishna – but the friends he made while he was there, and the loyalty he has towards them, is about to change everything.

Two of them now sit on the country’s throne, and when they summon him to the capital he discovers just how sheltered his life has been – Krishna is in danger, war is about to break out, and the conditions for surrender put forward by their enemies are impossible to meet. An elite unit of enemy troops is already launching attacks on the capital – an elite unit led by their old friend Zess. Continue reading