Version 5.4 ~ Haruhi gave rock and roll to you.

Dated 5 September 2015: I bought the Evangelion Blu-ray box set

Evangelion Blu-ray box set box
Box in box.

Surprising no one, I'm sure, I imported the recently released Neon Genesis Evangelion Blu-ray box from Japan. This was pretty much a guaranteed buy from me on general principle even though I'm arguably more on the casual end of the fandom these days. Hell, I don't even know if it's technically still called Shin Seiki Evangelion. I seem to remember some rumor that Gainax or Khara or whatever entity owns the property was adopting the English title officially. (There's probably a wiki article getting to the truth of this on EvaGeeks.) Anyway, with the U.S. dollar so strong against the Japanese yen, this was actually quite affordable. I also got it from in only three days which basically left me slack-jawed in amazement. It even shipped via DHL, like all the crap Asuka sent to Misato's apartment and then never used. What a world.

Evangelion Blu-ray box set
It does say "Neon Genesis" right there, you know.

As far as the unboxing itself, there are surely better examples on NicoVideo and YouTube with far better production values and narration than I'm willing to put forth. Here are some shots of my set, which presumably looks the same as all the other ones, unless I missed out on some sort of crazy cross-promotional pack-in I should be gnashing my teeth in dismay about:

Evangelion Blu-ray box set book
A book and stuff.

Evangelion Blu-ray box set discs
Discs fanned out.

Project Eva title card
The discs play just fine on an American Blu-ray player.

Evangelion title card
No subtitles, of course. Well, there are Japanese subtitles for the hearing-impaired.

Shinji and Misato
And, of course, the best ass shot of all time.

Anyway, it's totally worth it if you're an Eva fan. It's a far cry from the horrid quality many of us suffered through when we became fans in the first place.

Dated 23 October 2013: KILL la KILL leads the six shows that I'm watching so far

Mikisugi and Ryuuko
Relax, it's cool. He's her teacher.

I'm watching fewer shows autumn 2013 than I usually do. I suppose on average it's still about one episode each night, but with less time watching anime and less attention devoted to The Twitter, I do have noticeably more time to pursue other interests—to include updating an anime blog that's nearly in its 13th year.


Dated 15 October 2013: In re Summer 2013 Anime -or- The End of Silver Spoon ~Air/My Purest Love for Bacon~

Nakajima and Yoshino
I couldn't think of a gouda cheese pun to use for this caption.

Summer 2013: Silver Spoon [1-11] > Uchouten Kazoku [1-13] > Symphogear G [1-13] > Love Lab [1-13] > Genshiken Nidaime [1-13] > Prisma☆Illya [1-10] > C3-bu [1-13] > Turning Girls [1-7] > Detective Conan (701-711) > DokiDoki! Precure (23-34) > RailgunS [13-24] > Dog & Scissors [1-12].

Yoshino and Hachiken
These two are pretty upset even though Yoshino's not pregnant.

Dropped: Gatchaman Crowds (1-9) > Servant x Service (1-3) > Kiniro Mosaic (1-4) > Kitakubu Katsudou Kiroku (1-2) > Gen'ei o Kakeru Taiyou: Il Sole Penetra le Illusioni (1-3) > Chou Jigen Game Neptume The Animation (1) > High School DxD NEW (1-4) > Futari wa Milky Holmes (1-2). WORSE THAN COSPRAYERS: Shingeki no Kyojin (13.5-14).

This chart started out as a joke, but has grown kinda out of control. Of course, the whole ranking anime thing started out as a joke too, and then suddenly five years went by.

Yoshino and Aki
Yoshino makes me want to eat smoked cheese more than Churuya ever did.

Gin no Saji (Silver Spoon) was easily the best summer 2013 series that I watched. It was consistently entertaining and I was impressed with how Hachiken's character developed over the show's 11 episodes. Even the quandary with "Pork Bowl" ended up much better than I expected. That was the plot point I had the most reservations about, but I'm quite pleased with how Silver Spoon resolved it.

Professor Akadama
Five will get you tengu he's going to trash the joint.

Uchouten Kazoku (The Eccentric Family) stands out among the summer 2013 shows for being intelligent about idiots and being strange while feeling familiar. The focus is on tanuki family dynamics, but it turns out the problems fuzzball shapeshifters have with their families aren't too different than those experienced by humans, except perhaps tanuki aren't as quick to embrace Shakespearean revenge tragedies. To be fair, all I really learned about tanuki is that they are dumbasses and that they are easily panicked, but maybe that's all anyone needs to know about tanuki.

Tall-collar service.

More importantly, I learned Mamiko can knock 'em dead better than ever. Her work as Benten was transcendent. I've never wanted to be a decrepit old man more. In fact, thanks mostly to Noto Mamiko's superb work, but also because Benten herself is such straight-up trouble, I'm nominating Suzuki Satomi for 2013 Girl of the Year. I'd also like to mention that Nakahara Mai is better than ever, although I encourage her to take more parts like her role in Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita and and fewer roles as young boys.

The Shimogamo mom
The Shimogamo matriarch is lucky so many dudes wanted to do her tanuki-style.

Senki Zesshou Symphogear G: In the Distance, That Day, When the Star Became Music... had a great ending. Basically, if you didn't like that final episode then you just don't like anime. That said, the show itself did have a few issues. First of all, Dr. Ver's comically evil persona never seemed particularly threatening, except for maybe when we learned he wanted to make babies with Maria. Second, Maria herself turned out to be a bit of a disappointment. I certainly was not expecting her to spend most of the show crying. I guess it's a good thing there's not going to be a follow-up cour devoted to her efforts at repopulating the planet, because she'd probably cry the entire time then too.

Listen, sugar, either go back to whaling on some deadbeats
or help me repopulate the planet, but get to work.

Sorry, Maria really needed to focus more on tearing shit up and coming up with new cape-fu moves instead of all the moping she did. Still, I'll ignore a lot of faults when a show spends most of its time focusing on mahou shoujo whaling on each other while singing. Shirabe and Kirika were endearing even though their fights lost a lot of impact because there was no danger of anyone getting hurt. Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS already demonstrated that providing lots of collateral damage is not a substitute for emotional resonance.

The fan service in Prisma☆Illya gets out of control.

I've already written about the endings to Love Lab, Genshiken Nidaime, and Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya.

Oh, hey, it's Evangelion's Train of Despair.

Tokurei Sochi Dantai Stella Jo-Gakuin Koutou-ka C3-Bu spent too much time on Yura taking all the fun out of a game, but that was sort of the point. In a way, C3-bu felt as if Gainax wanted to stretch out a Gainax ending as far as they could. Technically, C3-bu did have a Gainax ending, but then they went ahead and made another episode that seemed to contain material I'd usually expect in a standalone OVA. Maybe that's the way it was originally planned, but someone figured at the last minute that it probably wouldn't sell or something.

I finished watching Turning Girls weeks ago.

Ran, Kogoro, and Conan
Ran shows off her crazy metabolism again.

I fell behind on Detective Conan but managed to catch up by the time I finally got this thing written. As for Meitantei Conan itself, it's still a reliable control for comparing shows season-to-season. It does need more Kazuha, though. I was concerned maybe her prolonged absence was related to Miyamura Yuko's longer commuting requirements. (She moved to Australia a few years ago.) I'm not sure if that's a factor, but it appears autumn 2013 starts off with at least four Heiji (with Kazuha in tow) episodes to follow the two that finished up the summer 2013 season. I'm certainly in favor of a six-episode block of Kazuha episodes, but I'm curious if they would have been spaced out instead if Miyamura Yuko still lived in Japan.

Cure Rosetta
Relax, yo. Cure Rosetta has got this.

DokiDoki! Precure did two notable things during the summer 2013 cour. One, it introduced a sass-talking Kugimiya Rie Cure. Two, it raised the stakes in the all-singing, all-dancing 3DCG ED wars. Aside from that, DokiDoki! is turning out to be one of the less interesting Pretty Cure generations, although episode 34 did have some rad Cure Rosetta beatdowns.

Saten and Uiharu
This made no sense, but I'll allow it.

To Aru Kagaku no Railgun S needed more SATEN, but I'm glad it found excuses to trot her out in different hairstyles and various street clothes. The ending of the series was rather ridiculous with its casualty-free battle between espers and drones. I guess I was pleased to see SATEN behind the controls of a giant robot, though. P.S. Spoilers.

I already covered Dog and Scissors.

I won't revisit the shows I dropped except to say I also dropped Gatchaman Crowds. This one comes as a bit of a surprise because it seemed so promising after a strong start. However, I was unable to take the villain seriously and never cared what he did. I also did not sympathize with Rui at all nor had any interest in his reasons for crossdressing. The turning point was the episode where Rui is mercilessly beaten for what ended up being a hilariously long time and I realized I had absolutely no emotional investment in any of the characters and was only still watching to see how long Hajime could prolong her violently upbeat attitude. I fell behind after that, and once I learned how disappointed other fans were with the series finale, I decided to simply quit watching altogether.

Saten and Uiharu
Hey, sweetie, eyes on the God damn road.

This season summary is a lot more piecemeal than previous ones, but I kinda get the feeling the amount of time required to compile these things does not expand linearly with the number of additional shows watched. Maybe the one I write three months from now for the autumn 2013 shows will be a lot more cohesive and contain greater detail and not be dragged out over several weeks. At least, maybe it will be that way if I continue to watch only three shows. I've got up to 10 I might consider, but I can't see following more than seven for the time being.

Dated 4 December 2012: There's a reason for this

Sigg Steelworks flask
Okay, so it's not a hat.

It's because it's December 4th.

Dated 4 December 2011: A pair of birthdays on December 4th

Miyamura Yuko

Happy Birthday to Miyamura Yuko and Soryu Asuka Langley.

Dated 5 March 2010: I could go for some more NieA_7

Mayuko is weary. Young girls they do get weary.

I started watching NieA_7 without knowing anything about the plot, the story, or the characters. However, what I did know comprised three solid reasons for watching NieA_7. First, the Ayako Doctrine. I really enjoy these roles of hers—that is, mostly unremarkable earnest girls that always seem a little sad. Second, the Miyamura Yuko Directive compels me to watch shows with Asuka's seiyuu in it. True story. Third, it's by that guy responsible for Haibane Renmei, Yoshitoshi ABe.

Mayuko and NieA
NieA is a freeloader crashing in Mayuko's humble room.

Thanks to a Pioneer/Geneon fire sale, I bought the DVDs for next to nothing despite knowing zilch about NieA_7. It is a pretty simple Mayuko's-daily-life sort of show that is soothing and pleasant even if it romanticizes borderline poverty. Really, I'd watch a hundred episodes of this. It makes me want to go to cram schools, sit on the roof, work part-time jobs, and take a lot of baths.

Dated 25 August 2008: Neo Ranga probably gets better once the characters stop wearing clothes


I bought the first Neo Ranga DVD despite knowing next to nothing about the show. My reasons for doing so are as follows:

  • I'm an Asuka fanatic, so by extension I'm also a Miyamura Yuko fanatic. Anime News Network's encyclopedia indicates that she is in Neo Ranga, so just as the Ayako Doctrine compels me to consider any show featuring Kawasumi Ayako, the Miyamura Yuko Directive drives me to watch Neo Ranga as a matter of principle.
  • I'm also a Sega fanatic. For some curious reason I'm under the impression that Neo Ranga is influenced by the Sega Dreamcast—not an uncommon occurrence in anime, to tell you the truth.

  • The DVD with collector's box was less than five dollars. I like boxes and I like deep discounts.

Neo Ranga
Neo Ranga. It's thinking.

On the other hand, Neo Ranga is an ADV license, which enhances the a possibilities that (a) the show is terrible, or (b) the show is actually good, but the subtitles are MISS SAKAKI kinds of awful. Still, I'm willing to risk it.


So what did I learn after watching this first DVD?

  • Well, the episodes are half-length, so there are eight on the first DVD.
  • Miyamura Yuko plays a redhead. I kinda saw that coming.
  • Neo Ranga looks like mecha, but has a tail and acts like Godzilla in that it occasionally walks in from the sea to level random parts of Japan.


Through the second episode: The pacing in this show is awful, and the dialog is really stilted.

Minami. (I think.)

Through the third episode: This anime is basically a B-movie. The directing is confusing with way too much shakycam, and the acting is rather appalling, with characters chewing the scenery at all times.


After four episodes: The box art and ED suggest these three girls spend most of the show nude but for some body paint. So far this is not the case at all. I feel cheated.

DVD menu with Yuuhi
The DVD menus are misleading, too.

Yuuhi is the precocious one who lounges about in the expensive lingerie people keep giving her. Kazuo is a teacher who may or may not have designs on her. She's also supposed to be in grammar school, so I can only assume she's been held back a lot.

Yuuhi and Kazuo
Yuuhi and her teacher, Kazuo.

Impotent defense forces feebly attempt to repel Neo Ranga with tanks at point blank range. This is a sound military tactic because it makes it much easier for their giant, monstrous target to snatch them up and smush them. Wait, that's no good. You fools!

Neo Ranga
Neo Ranga. It's smushing.

I was rather pleasantly surprised to discover Kawasumi Ayako in the cast. It's always nice to hear her voice when I'm not expecting it. (Even when the show is He Is My Master.)

It takes five episodes for Neo Ranga to get an OP.

What was episode six about?


After seven, this show is awful. It doesn't help that the subtitles suck, too.

After eight, I don't know if I'm going to buy the rest of the DVDs. I'll need to acquire five more to fill the box. Maybe there will be another ADV fire sale. Alas.

Dated 10 October 2007: It turns out ANTA BAKA is German for Ape Fucker

Rei, Asuka, and a new character
This is really a picture of Asuka.

I sort of hope Miyamura Yuko has been working on her German in preparation for the new Evangelion movies.