Version 5.4 ~ Haruhi gave rock and roll to you.
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Dated 7 January 2019: In re anime materialism

<&Seem> Oof. My overburdened media shelf decided to finally collapse and it took with it all the remaining Macross/Gundam models I'd kept intact and displayed since the early 2000s
<&Seem> Just look at these shattered things and thinking all I can do is toss them in the garbage ( ._.)

Learning of Seem's misfortune reminds me that recovering my own anime merchandise from the inevitable future SoCal earthquake is going to be troublesome. Viewed from the perspective that the things you own end up owning you, there is something perversely attractive about the prospect of going through life with fewer material possessions. I do know people who favor that lifestyle, but fewer still who both favor it and actually embrace it. I, on the other hand, like having things, even though each acquisition incrementally increases the burden and complexity of storing it all and finding new spaces for additional hoarding.

GIRLS und PANZER BD box
Meanwhile, I imported more Japanese BDs.

I'm not prepared to take the position that losing everything in a catastrophe should be viewed as liberating, but hearing about events such as the above does remind me that I don't really have any sort of plan for the Blu-rays I buy and never watch, nor do I have any idea what I'm going to do with my growing collection of anime tchotchkes. I do occasionally see people selling off their stuff on the Twitter, but it sort of seems as if those efforts are intended to ensure the items at least go to people who will appreciate them, rather than to recoup financial value. Probably that's the best case scenario, long term.

Dated 9 April 2018: I'm looking forward to Full Metal Panic! Invisible Victory

Tessa and Leonard
I guess you need to watch The Second Raid
to know who the person on the right is.

There has been a running gag for years about Full Metal Panic! fans in anguish about Kyoto Animation working on other projects instead of animating another sequel to follow Full Metal Panic! The Second Raid. To some extent, I fit that category of disgruntled fans in the sense that I did want another FMP season, although it's not accurate to claim I harbored Kyoani any ill will, if only because I had long ago concluded no such sequel would ever be forthcoming. Surprisingly, there is going to be a fourth season after all: Full Metal Panic! Invisible Victory. (Get it? Full Metal Panic! IV. Anyway....) Xebec is making this one, and it starts on 13 April. Do you need to watch the first three seasons before watching FMP IV? I dunno. Probably?

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Dated 12 March 2016: Revisiting Innocent Venus

Steve and Toraji
It's your own fault for only bringing a gun to a sword fight.

Innocent Venus is "pretty good," but it sort of feels as if viewers forgot about it somewhat quickly. When was the last time you even thought about this 2006 series? I liked it quite a bit when it first aired, but even I haven't thought about it much after it ended. I want to say it was at least popular enough to get licensed, but basically everything was getting licensed back then just before the crash. I see it sure didn't take long for the DVDs to go out of print, so good luck finding it now if you haven't secured a copy already.

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Dated 6 November 2014: I'm so stoked Cross Ange is going to be two cours

Ange
All things considered, Angelise is taking this rather well.

I should probably be blogging about Cross Ange: Tenshi to Ryuu no Rondo (Cross Ange: Rondo of Angels and Dragons) on a regular basis because I think it has the potential to provide as much mileage as Gundam SEED Destiny did. Let's be clear. I am not watching Cross Ange "ironically," okay. This show is shit, but it is great shit. It's never boring and you'll stare in disbelief at some of the idiocy that transpires, but I still enjoy it a great deal. It's got Banana Mizuki stabbing dragons in the face, for crying out loud!

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Dated 25 July 2014: Barakamon taught me pacing is important even in a show about calligraphy

Seishuu and Tamako
Does this count as a Meet Cute?

Technically, Barakamon is not a show about calligraphy, but rather a show about a calligrapher. It's pretty refreshing because it's one of those increasingly rare anime that's about (1) an adult who is (2) good at something because (3) he works hard at it rather than by virtue of being Anime Jesus. In fact, one of the characters in the show postulates that having the discipline to work hard is a talent itself.

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Dated 11 July 2013: Spring 2013 wrapup

Shiny Chariot
Shiny Chariot's Magical Festa is a tough act to follow.

Overall, the spring 2013 season was a little bit of a letdown considering it started fairly strong. (I can sort of prove it too.) From a subjective standpoint, it probably felt worse because the start of the season coincided with the release of Little Witch Academia and Death Billiards which are both excellent short films, although not part of the spring 2013 anime season itself. As you can probably predict, both the best show and the worst show I watched were pretty consistent episode to episode.

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Dated 10 July 2012: Spring 2012 season wrapup

Rin, Yuka, Saki, and Natsumi
Rin, Saki, and Natsumi realize by now that Yuka
with an idea can be a dangerous thing.

I've already explained why Natsuiro Kiseki is my favorite show from spring 2012. However, I didn't mention how shabby the animation looks at times. I'm really surprised to see such lapses from Sunrise, but the show is otherwise so good I'm willing to ignore those faults.

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Dated 13 June 2012: Upotte!! ends and AKB0048 begins

G3 and M14
Upotte!! should have focused more on the battle rifle high school.

Upotte!! is much less tasteless and much more informative than the first episode and initial viewer impressions might have you believe. In those respects, it's sort of like Chu-Bra!! only with rifles instead of brassieres. Notably, the befuddled human teacher has a much smaller role in the series than I expected.

Sig
And the Alpine guns with the way they shoot
They keep their riflemen warm at night.

Overall, Upotte!! is a trite sitcom with anthropomorphic military small arms and several historical and factual capsules interspersed among the action. Some of the stereotyping is heavy-handed, but I'm mostly in agreement with the show's criticism of the British SA80 bullpup and her comical failings. Upotte!! does love the Sig 550 way too much, though. Fanboys.

NO IDOL!
The moé war has already begun. People simply haven't noticed.

AKB0048 is mostly terrible, but it does have good stuff in it. At a minimum, it gave us NO IDOL! missiles and wota cavalry riding to the rescue in their itasha mecha amidst an Itano Circus swarm of glow-stick missiles. There is that. [P.S. Spoilers.] But aside from the absurd battles, very little of AKB0048 is memorable. In fact, at the moment I can only remember the name of one girl: Cherry, whom I've designated as the the AKB0048 Best Girl mostly by default because she has the best hair.

Itasha vehicles
Actually, maybe they're mechanized infantry and not cavalry.

Aside from that, AKB0048 (properly called A-K-B zero zero forty-eight, as the show constantly reminds us, as opposed to A-K-B double-'aught forty-eight, as I prefer) seems little more than a celebration of the real-word AKB48 idol troop. There are numerous in-show references presumably aimed at AKB48 fans, a collective fanbase which I view as a curious lot, to be quite honest. The impression I get is that AKB48 fans are not fans of the music, nor even necessarily fans of the girls (despite their vocal and occasionally socially inappropriate expressions of devotion), but rather fans of AKB48 as a phenomenon or as an entity, much as rabid sports fans are loyal to their favorite teams despite the regularly changing roster of star players.

Chieri
I bet Miki could strike out Cherry with just three pitches.

If you think this is a seque to bootstrap an idol-based fantasy league team that I'll match up against The iDOLM@STER 765PROs...you're wrong. I don't know crap about AKB48, and I'm pretty sure the AKB0048 candidates would get shellacked by the 765PROs even with Kotori pitching both ends of a double-header. It might be a different story if the AKB0048 farm team gets to include scenery-chewing Ayako and cyborg Yukarin in the lineup as ringers, though.