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Saturday, 20 November 2010

Anime Festival Asia X (AFA X)



I'm sure you all know what the 'X' behind AFA means right? For those who have no clue about it... X = 10, in the roman numeric system... I think that's what the system's called... :S

Anyways, I'm back! ... For quite~~~ some time actually, just that I was lazy to blog... anyways, here's my review of this year's AFA, also known as AFA X! The name this year's cooler than last year's...

This time around, I attended AFA X for 2 days, unlike last year's 1 day experience... due to the fact that I had to lead my friends around... (Not really, but oh well...)

And this time (actually cuz I'm lazy), I don't really feel like uploading every single photo I've took, so do check out my albums at Facebook for well... the photos. XD

Here are the links:

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2067329&id=1116663526
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2067381&id=1116663526

Day 1

AFA's doors opened at 9:00am, so I tried getting there by 8:20am to buy the tickets but ended up failing and I got there by 9:20am... (The bus... The freaking bus came at around 8:45am as we missed the 8:30am bus...)

Here's how the ticketing booth looks like...



The crowd near the entrance...



And at any rate, we managed to get in.

Well now, I think I should just review yes? The internet's starting to hate me... so posting photos will be a drag...

For the 1st day, we pretty much looked around everywhere and attended some of the events on the brochure... notable stuff we did were...

1) Cosplay Meet & Greet: Kaname★

Envious now fangirls??? XDD Just joking. At least my friends and I got to take photos WITH-- yes, not just take a photo of a cosplay celebrity but WITH a cosplay celebrity. XD

And this celebrity is none other than Kaname★!

He was cosplaying Gauche Suede from Tegami Bachi for Day 1. I'll be watching that anime sooner or later to do a review on it as well.





2) Rapid Culture Booth Incident

I passed by this store by myself and saw a deck of K-ON! Precious Memories Trial Deck which I saw on the net, supposedly has a seiyuu-signed card in it... so I immediately decided to get one. The counter guy told me it was the so-called last deck of the day, so I said sure I would buy it... and right while I was paying, I didn't expect he would shoot me a question as awesome as this.

"Hey uh... which character do you like in 'K-ON!'?"

I solemnly said Ritsu... and he went all nuts. Singaporean style. XD

Counter guy #1: NAH! YOU SEE?! Someone in this world actually likes Ritsu!!!
Counter guy #2: Shut up lah you... Mio's the best lah!!!
Counter guy #3: What oh... Azunyan bah...!

And the argument continued until I said "Excuse me..." since I wanted to pay... He immediately apologized and gave me the cards right after saying thank you after receiving my payment. The argument supposedly continued for quite awhile as I left with a wide smile on my face. I'm really happy that there are people who actually appreciates Ricchan's existence in this world and not just the overrated Mio & Azusa...

3) 'Culture:Japan' Screening

I was able to see Danny Choo-san on stage!!! And got to watch the latest episode of 'Culture:Japan' on a big screen with lots of anime fans too! It really feels better watching with a group of people who share the same interest with you. Don't you agree?

I lol'ed when the video stopped working properly halfway through and Danny-san starts telling us how his Mac Book Air fails him at important times and he'd prefer using the good ol' Windows XP while fiddling with his Mac Book Air. That was epic!

I left halfway through the screening since my cousin had to leave to walk around with her friends... I'm sure Animax would reply this so I wasn't the least bit worried I might miss something. :D


4) Moe Moe Kyun Cafe Experience

[Photos will be uploaded sooner or later]

Yeah well, I didn't get to EXPERIENCE this last year, so I this time, since my friends were around, why not?

While we were queuing up, a girl who was semi-cosplaying (like me! XD) a student from Vampire Knight's Night Class (I think?) wanted to take a photo of me and my friend... so we gladly allowed her to take our photos and in return, hers.

When we got near the entrance of the cafe... I saw...

DANNY CHOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! *insert fangirl squeal here*

... Yeah, I just SAW him... having his meal with his friend... while the people sitting next to him didn't even care. (LEMME SIT WITH HIM THEN!!! >:O) 'Course when he left, we were still queuing up... (sucks...) but when he was about to leave, the MMK team posed for him and lots of cameramen took his photo on his way out... some people were able to take a photo with him too, and even get his signature... (Must be awesome... TT^TT) Welp, after ordering our food, we went into the cafe...

... Though I felt that a video camera was near us...... (Which is actually true. We got 'filmed' into one of those AFA X Official Review videos... ^^;)

We got to our seat. And since I bought that deck of K-ON! cards, I couldn't wait to check it out and ultimately the result, which was pretty unexpected, (since I have a 'curse' to get lots of Mio freebies for God-knows-what reasons, I thought I would be getting Hikasa Yoko's signature...) was~... *drum rolls*

SATOU SATOMI'S.

I was so happy that I started yelling like mad in my heart and talked to my friends to calm myself down... so no wonder that guy at the Rapid Culture store asked me that particular question...!!! Wait... does it mean this was opened before? :S

Anyways, the maid who served us was Moe... she did the power-up stunts and stuff and we kinda froze... since well... we didn't expect it to be that... awkward... while having our food... I noticed that no one was coming in even though lots of people were leaving, leaving plenty of empty seats... plus, the songs in the cafe suddenly turned 'SCANDALISHY'...

I didn't feel it was anything out of place. Maybe they wanna change shifts or something? Until my friend who sat opposite of me voiced out something weird...

"Hey Nic, there's a group of girls wearing the same uniform sitting a table behind us? Do you think it's... you know... SCANDAL?"

... I immediately stopped eating and acted like I wanted to stretch to look what's behind... and what do you know...

IT'S REALLY 'SCANDAL'.

I tried calming down and my friends weren't making it better... we started eating quite slowly... seeming as if we wanted to stay a little longer... but of course, it'll be weird if it's our table only... and with SCANDAL.

Thinking about it, they really look pretty cool up close... they had that 'BAND' feeling around them... and they really looked like teenagers... (Which they are right?)

... After finishing our food and drinks, we decided to leave... of course, we had no idea how to leave, either through the back door (which my friend suggested since she saw a group leave through there) or through the entrance (which the crowd's curious on what's going on) or some exit that's somewhere else... Luckily one of the maids (I dunno who she was...) came by and guided us out through the back door asking why we didn't want to stay longer with SCANDAL...

'Course, we had other things to do... so... we answered her with a few dry chuckles here and there (COURSE WE DON'T WANNA LEAVE) since it was really gonna be awkward if we stated our true reasons right? So yeah.

5) Animax's Dubbing Booth

Without trying to dub at least once at these kind of events, how are you able to experience an event like this to the max?

Like last year, I dubbed Hirasawa Yui. And I dubbed her Second Season role this year... and boy~ was it epic fail this year... I was a bit TOO nervous, thanks to a cameraman who appeared in front of the dubbing booth snapping away... thanks to him I blew it...

My friend dubbed Rukia from BLEACH. She laughed halfway through... I lol'ed.

6) JAM Project & Ichirou Mizuki Appearance

We wanted to watch Hanazawa Kana though... but we were a bit too early and got caught up in this event...

I'm not too familiar with these guys, so... I can't really elaborate further... I only know that the crowd was yelling like mad... so yeah. ^^;

7) Hanazawa Kana Q&A and Live Dubbing

Which... TOTALLY converted me into a Hanazawa Kana fan from that day on. The first seiyuu whom I saw the whole event through, without missing anything... My other 2 friends had to leave early, so only my other friend, 'Lelouch' & I, attended this thing all the way.

Man, I never knew Hanazawa-san looked like Toyosaki Aki if you look at her at certain angles... and she was very cute. Well, ACTING very cute I mean... but she is very cute. :D

Oh and! As opposed to having not really pro-level translators for last year's K-ON! girls since Danny-san couldn't make it, he made it this time, as Hanazawa-san's on-stage translator.

As for the Q & A.. here's a link for it. Credits go to the guy who owns that blog.

http://deremoe.com/2010/11/16/hanazawa-kana-afax-stage-event/

Q1: Which role was the most similar to yourself?
A: Ryoko from Zegapain. (She continued saying other stuff but I kinda forgotten what she said...)

After that question, she dubbed one of the most notable scenes of anime 'Angel Beats!', which is the final episode 'Graduation's', confession scene. Her timing was off by a lil~ bit but it wasn't noticable, so of course I'll let it slide. Seeing her doing this role live made my day... it's really cool! Well... I wished I could've seen the K-ON! girls do it though... TT^TT

I also noticed that when she dubbed, she looked very very serious... o_o

Then this producer dude of a very popular series, Black★Rock Shooter came out made an appearance talking about Black★Rock Shooter related things. And even announced that there'll be a sequel to the anime movie. Well now, isn't that just great... I'm not on the very interested side (I'm sure you've seen my review on it...) but I'll give B★RS another go. Especially this time for Hanazawa-san's sake. XD

After a while, she dubbed one more scene. This time, as Kuroi Mato of B★RS.. the scene where she gives Yomi a keychain. I was surprised that she could really change her tone of voice... from one soft-spoken one like Kanade, to an energetic teen like Mato... yup, she definitely is one of those seiyuu I'm gonna start looking out for.

Ah! And this time when she dubbed, she was smiling a lot. At least it was better than 'serious face' Hanazawa-san... XP

After the dubbing, back to Q & A panel.

Q2:How do you manage to do great on your voice acting?
A: I practice the script at home as soon as I receive it. (Insufficient info to elaborate... sorry...)

Q3: What is your favorite line and from what series is it in?
A: “Kobato, Gambarimasu~”~! (Again, insufficient info... ><;)

Q4: How do you maintain your good health and voice?
A: I do it by having a good food, enough rest and would sometimes sleep with a mask.

Q5: If you were to make your own ‘skill’, like the ones found in 'Angel Beats!', what would be it’s purpose?
A: She would make one to cut vegetables.

LastQ: What are your future and career plans?
A: I want to have a separate flat in Singapore.

And after the dubbing, there was the famous autograph giveaway... which was for 5 lucky people... only this time, they get to go on stage, witness her signing it and shake her hand as they leave the stage. 'Course this was for people who had seats, so... *sighs*... Danny-san was funny as the emcee though.. he was like, "If you don't come out in 10 seconds, we will choose another person. NOW HURRY UP~!" and "Okay, you've done well. Guys, tie him up at the corner over there." XDD

That was the end for Day 1.

------

Day 2. Would I be lying if I said we didn't do much? Well, no. I wouldn't. 'Cuz we've done most of the things we should be doing on Day 1. -_-; But we've missed doing some of the important stuff on Day 1... And we've been in the hall for half of the day on this day.

1) Kareshi Kanojyo no Mise & COSPA Sea Shopping Failure

... Let's just say, it was sad to see everything I wanted being sold out on the 2nd day. But we got into the shop real quickly and didn't have to queue long. (For KKnM) Bought a few stuff at least... better than nothing. As for COSPA, I really~~~ wanted to get a Misaka Mikoto T-Shirt... but, it got sold out... go Railgun...! *sighs*...

2) Suzumiya Haruhi no Shoushitsu screening

I got to watch this with my friend Chantelle. And it was epically awesome! I missed parts from the front as we arrived a bit late but the movie was awesome. She was clinging onto my arm at the climax and I was getting a bit anxious to know what's going to happen too... really thrilling. Unlike Endless 'The Crap' Eight. XD The crowd was being very considerate... they weren't making noise and all those stuff. And when they laughed, my friend and I laughed too. XD

3) Back to COSPA Sea!!! For Haruhi!

Yeah, we wanted to buy a souvenir after watching the Shoushitsu movie but we were out of luck as the 'Haruhi Ruined My Life' T-Shirts were all for guys, so the size of the T-Shirts were too big... making it futile even if were bought it. So we decided to get a Sasuke T-Shirt for one of our dear friends. (My best friend, for that matter. ^^)

4) Regional Cosplay Championship

We managed to catch the finale of 'Team Thailand' when my friend and I got back in. I had 2 other friends but we kinda got seperated... :S Anyways, there were 4 Teams. 'Team Malaysia', 'Team Thailand', 'Team Singapore' & 'Team Indonesia'.

My 2 other friends (who were actually in the hall without us knowing) told us 'Team Malaysia' did a scene from anime 'Fairy Tail'. 'Team Thailand' were doing a scene from the game, 'Monster Hunter'. 'Team Singapore' did a scene from manga, 'Defense Devil' and finally 'Team Indonesia' were doing a scene from... umm... I'm not sure about that... Tonkatsu or something... I dunno...

I'm unable to elaborate fully here since I'm not really sure what was going on (My friend and I were at the far back of the hall before locating our 'lost friend' (another one left early).) so yeah...

Oh! The judges are Kaname★, -aira-, Alodia & Clive. Kaname★ was cosplaying Black★Rock KAITO, -aira- as Black★Rock Shooter, Alodia as '???' ('Cuz I really dunno...) and Clive as Nobunaga Oda of the Sengoku Basara franchise.

Before announcing the winner, last year's winner Clive and Animax presenter, Alodia bought the judges some time as they started to vote who should be the winner this year... They didn't really do much... just talk about random stuff, and posed for the cameras here and there. Some Malaysian dude (... He really ruined the image of our country for goodness sake) started yelling random stuff like 'MALAYSIA SHOULD WIN!!!' or 'ALODIA YOU'RE SO SEXY!!!!!!' and stuff... really~~~ annoyed me and my friends and we didn't wanna yell 'Malaysia!!!" if the emcees started asking who would win...

Well... in the end 'Team Indonesia' won due to their props and costumes. Really well made... Alodia even wanted to take the two Indonesian cosplayers home with her... resulting to the crowd's cheer and the Malaysian dude's "TAKE ME HOME TOO!!!!!!"... ugh.

Next section...

5) angela, SCANDAL & May'n Appearance

The event that we've been waiting for! The appearance of SCANDAL & May'n!!!!!! Uh... we don't really know who angela is so yeah... ^^; I apologize for that.

My friends were brave enough-- no, scratch that... practically the whole hall decided to ignore the 'No photography allowed!' rule and quickly snapped photos of the singers on the main stage. I wasn't able to since my camera's pixel thing had a very annoying limit... so I had to leave it to my friends for the photo-taking... *sighs*...

SCANDAL was as awesome as yesterday. May'n seemed very courteous (or nervous?)... but she was very gentle when she talked, not like when she sings with that powerful voice of hers. I didn't catch any of these events last year since I wasn't that interested, but this year I was able to, and I'm really glad to.

6) Kaname★ & -aira- Panel

My friends just wanted to take photos of their Kaname★... so that's why we stayed for a bit before leaving... we didn't get to enjoy the panel to the fullest.

6) 'Cotton Candy' Animax Cosplay Group as the 'K-ON!' girls Performance

Outside the hall, we were able to catch the 'Cotton Candy' team performing as the K-ON! girls in their maid outfits... they were doing a dance with the song 'Gohan wa Okazu' as the background music... it was a bit~ random but... oh well... their cosplays were fine... I guess... ^^;

And that pretty much wraps up most of the notable events for both days!

As for what I managed to buy... well, here they are!

[Photos will be uploaded at another time. So please tune in till then! Or, you can vistit my Facebook photos... :)]

Overall... this year's AFA wasn't as awesome as last year's for some reasons... I just didn't feel like it was really as fun as last year's... not much oomph I guess? Hmm... but with my friends around, I let that feeling slide for just a bit. ;)

My mom already gave me the "Okay!" for next year's AFA, so I'll be sure to attend it and of course, review it in due time!

So till next time! :D

AFA '11! Here I come!!!!!!! >:D

"Tehepero~!" ~ By Pikasha Yocchan. XD

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Seikimatsu Occult Gakuin

Summary: The Waldstein Academy is an institute devoted to studies on paranormal disciplines, thus becoming known as the Occult Academy. Maya Kumashiro returns to this place to attend the funeral of the former principal, Junichiro Kumashiro, her father. Maya, a skeptic who hates the occult, meets with Fumiaki Uchida, a time agent from the future sent to 1999 to prevent the apocalyptic Nostradamus Prophecies from happening. The predictions state that the school will be ground zero of the cataclysm that will destroy the world. They must team up to discover not only what actually led to her father's demise, they have limited time to find out what is the key that triggers the beginning of the end.

Yay! Yet another awesome series to review on... Especially when it's the 3rd Anime no Chikara project and there's Hikasa 'The Awesome' Yoko as the main protagonist! ><

Reviews:

Storyline: Occult, action-packed and magic near the end... add in drama and tsundere-ism by Kumashiro Maya and you'll get an awesome series that can't really be described by words. The ending was sweet too... but it felt slightly weird though... near the end. Hmm... maybe due to the length? The comedy was pretty funny as well especially when it's centered around

Graphics: Top notch. I really liked the art... it felt more... realistic... unlike those moe anime we watch for entertainment. Hahaha! A1-Pictures & Aniplex did a good job delivering this kind of artworks for us to enjoy.

Music: Very... 'occulty'? Hmm... BGM I meant. And that's also one of the main highlights throughout the anime. The BGM's perfect for every scene that needs a BGM. I lol'ed at the BGM for the character Chihiro as it was 'La Campanella', and it's freakin' epic. XD The Opening theme 'Flying Humanoid' by Nakagawa Shouko's nice and the ending theme 'Kimi ga Iru Basho' by Takagaki Ayahi changed my viewpoint of her singing. She can seriously sing very well and now I'm able to identify her singing parts in the songs Sphere sung. :)

Voice Acting: High class!!! Hikasa Yoko's freaking awesome!!! Chihara Minori made me wanna slap her character, Nakagawa Mikaze, like mad, in a good way, it means she did her evil-cutesy role very well. No Nagato Yuki or Tsuchimiya Kagura characteristics shown! Mizushima Takahiro as Bunmei's impressive too, since the only role I know from his character list is Rolo Lamperouge... Kobayashi Yuu's freaking pro too! And I lol'ed the whole time her character, vice principal Kawashima Chihiro, acted like she was in love. Takagaki Ayahi also managed to surprise me not only with her singing prowess, but her voicing of Kuroki Ami, Maya's best & childhood friend. Then there's Hanazawa Kana's idiotic impersonation of Naruse Kozue and that's the first time I've seen her done a role of an idiot. XD The others done a good job too lol.

Recommendation: To anyone who enjoys the Occult!!! And for graphics, and music, and... Hikasa Yoko goodness? A recommended anime for anyone to watch!!!

Rating: 4.7/5 (Recommended)


"I hate the Occult~!!!!!!" says Maya, but does she really mean it hmm?

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Black Rock Shooter (OVA)

Summary: Mato Kuroi just got into junior high school, and on the first day, someone catches her eye; her classmate Yomi Takanashi. The two meet.The innocent and naive Mato. The mature Yomi. Seemingly opposites, but the time they spend together only strengthens a growing friendship. But as they go into their second year at the school, they get placed in separate classes, and they begin to grow apart. But somewhere simultaneously... In another world, a young girl, blue fire residing in her eyes, Black Rock Shooter faces another young girl; this one holding a jet-black scythe, Dead Master, and a battle to the death begins to unfold.


Alright, alright... one last one before I go to bed... 'cuz I have nothing much to say about this OVA anyways. 1 anime down from my 'have to review' list.

Reviews:

Storyline: ... Highly anticipated~... yeah~... Just what the heck is with the storyline? It's so screwed up that it was freakin' random... and I can't believe I watched the whole thing... with the 'WTH' face on the whole time. Firstly, it felt like some fantasy-fighting kind of story. Fine. Then suddenly in the next scene, some random slice-of-life story pops up... then back to the fighting story... then back to some jealousy over my best friend being taken (insert Episode 11 of K-ON! here, Ritsu~ Mio~) story plot... then more fighting... then jealous girl goes missing, main character desperately wants to save her... then at some park, she turns all "I'm Black Rock Shooter." mode... I mean come on! The story has it's meaning but this is really~ random! And there's the ending that makes it feel like 'To Be Continued'... -_-; Ugh!!!

Graphics: ... As everyone has mentioned, the graphics are top notch but not REALLY top notch... and also, due to the crappy storyline, the graphics are wasted~... Good job 'Ordet' for the graphics but Tanigawa Nagaru-san & Yoshioka Shinobu-san... just what on earth did you make us watch? What kind of storyline WAS that?!

Music: ... Nothing special, really. Ending song called 'Braveheart' that's composed by Ryo and sung by The Gomband couldn't even let me say "Wow!" throughout the beginning of the OVA to the end... -_-;

Voice Acting: ... I feel sorry for the voice actresses hired to do this... seriously... at least the voice acting is something I can praise on. Hanazawa Kana as protagonist Kuroi Matou sounded like Taketatsu Ayana at first... really. (It made me check to confirm who's voicing her...) And then veteran Sawashiro Miyuki as Takanashi Yomi was like... Mamiko Noto... in a good way, of course. Other than that... uhh... since Asumi Kana as Yuu didn't appear that much (vocally), maybe I'll just give a 'good job' to her eh?

Recommendation: HIGHLY..... NOT recommended. Unless you're into crappy storyline OVAs like this then it's fine with me. Or, you can just watch this for the graphics, that's fine.

Rating: 0.5/5 (DON'T. WATCH. THIS. CRAP.)

Angel Beats!


Summary: In a world after death, angels fight for their fate and their future. Yuri, the leader of the Shinda Sekai Sensen, rebels against the god who destined her to have an unreasonable life. On the otherhand, Tenshi, the chairperson of the student council for the world after death, battles against the SSS members. SSS members utilize armed weaponry to battle it out against the angels harnessing supernatural powers.

I just felt like reviewing 'Angel Beats!' tonight before I sleep so here goes nothing~...

Reviews:

Storyline: The story's a mix of drama, action, tragedy and of course, comedy... so it was quite enjoyable to watch. Also, as it was highly anticipated, I suppose this is the fruit of it... but midway, the story felt rushed... and the ending, well, yes it may be sad but unlike K-ON!! (which 'ripped my heart out'), it... didn't really push the right buttons. Their ending is also 'Graduation themed', as many may put it... (What's with anime characters graduating this year?!) Well, the anime itself is QUITE religious in a way... the retelling of their past were easy to understand why their trying hard to live now and hmm... what else is there... the character developments were interesting? At any rate, if this is from Key (Maeda Jun's so-called 'company'?), it's obviously good... but it should've been a BIT~ longer to make the story much more... acceptable, than it is. Since there's rumours of a 2nd Season already, that's fine I guess. And there's an OVA too at the end of the year...

Graphics: Key decided not to allow KyoAni take this series most likely due to the fact that it's busy with K-ON!! at that time, so it went ahead with P.A. Works. The graphics are smooth and nice, action scenes were done well and it's surprising since I (think) seldom watch P.A. Works works... lol. Graphically, as expected, this anime's good.

Music: Woots~! I guess this is the anime which has ability to rival against K-ON! only in terms of music... Girls Dead Monster (GDM) vs. Houkago Tea Time (HTT), which band is your choice? As for vocalists, Iwasawa Masami & Yui or Akiyama Mio & Hirasawa Yui? 'Course, I would support HTT with my whole heart... Anyways, their music is on the 'superb' level as their sung by Marina (Iwasawa) and later on LiSA (Yui). That's their 'lost' point, they should've made the seiyuu sing the songs instead to make it more original, like K-ON!, not get someone else to sing it... (Macross Frontier's Sheryl Nome's no exception! May'n's awesome but Endou Aya's great too when it comes to singing!)... welp~ least they didn't sound awful but instead, awesome. BGM's done by Maeda Jun himself & a group called Anant-Garde Eyes, so the BGM's very good. This is what you can expect from Key, good music and well... good storyline I guess?

Voice Acting: ... Hmm... mostly verterans... so you can expect the goodness of the voice acting. Ah, Sakurai Harumi's surprisingly fitting for Suzumiya Haruhi look-a-like Nakamura Yuri a.k.a. Yurippe, which is a good thing. And Hanazawa Kana definitely did herself a good job with Tachibana Kanade a.k.a. Tenshi. I'll be expecting to see her dubbing Tenshi at AFA X... Anyways, Kamiya Hiroshi made Otonoshi Yuzuru felt like a Okazaki Tomoya (done by Nakamura Yuuichi) near the end, so that's great! XD The others did a good job too.

Recommendation: It's one of the highly anticipated anime this year... so of course, do check it out. It may be good to some and well, it was pretty good to me, but like I said, this anime has lots of pros & cons... though, it's still recommended anyhow. So do check it out if you're into action, comedy-drama, fantasy and not forgetting romance.

Rating: 4.5/5 (Recommended)

K-ON!! (Review + News Updates)


Summary: It's the final year of high school for Yui Hirasawa (guitar), Ritsu Tainaka (drums), Mio Akiyama (bass), and Tsumugi Kotobuki (keyboard); the founding members of the Light Music Club. Together with their junior member Azusa Nakano (guitar), they spend their days after school in the music room enjoying tea and sweets, and practicing music. Amidst band practice, preparations for the new student orientation performance, scouting for new members, and student responsibilities they still have time for "After School Tea Time".

"...And with this, it's goodbye... 'Houkago Tea Time'..."

HELL NO!!! K-ON! won't end just yet! I'll tell you the reason why AFTER I've finished this review!!! >:O

Reviews:

Storyline: Just like the first season, it's a slice-of-life series about music, and 5 (once 4) girls bonding together. And no it's NOT yuri!!! S-Sorry... anyways... umm, the story may NOT be emphasized solely on the music in this season... but lots of dramas ensues... nah, calling it 'drama' sounds a bit weird... maybe... 'touchy moments'? Well... the second season focuses more on the 'fun' that they're having than just the music... which is relaxing. Then near the end, starting around episode 20, I wasn't able to hold back my tears as it was so freaking touching! Episode 24 was one of the episodes that 'killed' me as well. The storyline, overall, was enjoyable, and I'll really miss these kinds of stories as they're closely related to our school life. (... If 'Nichijou' can beat 'K-ON!', I'll be speechless by then.)

Graphics: It's Kyoto Animation!!! But I noticed that they've enhanced the art of K-ON!!... unlike it's prequel, the colours seem more vivid. Which is better... Azusa's hair colour has also been slightly modified... and the shading's better, compared to the prequel... KyoAni must have been on budget on the first season... and now that K-ON! brought them money, they have no more restrictions and decided to provide us with greater graphics. Nice job there, KyoAni!

Music: The openings of K-ON!! hmm... To be honest, when I heard 'GO! GO! Maniac', it felt so 'chipmunk-ish' that I really disliked it... but after a while, it got to me. Just like what happened with 'Cagayake Girls!'. As for 'Utauyo!! Miracle', I disliked it too but in the end loved it as it was catchy like both the previous opening themes... does Toyosaki Aki have the ability to make people love the song only AFTER listening to it for like... 10 times? o_o; Anyways onto the endings... now this, I'm sure anyone & every K-ON! fan would agree with me that the endings were superb. 'Listen!!' was an immediate love for me (though when Hikasa sang 'Listen~!!", I heard "Ritsu~!!" instead... o_O;) and 'NO, Thank You!' is the most splendid sing out of the 3 ending songs released. The lyrics were meaningful at that and I quickly fell in love with the song after like... 5 seconds? Due to the awesome graphics and also, the 2nd version of school outfit they wore. BGM by Hajime Hyakkoku. Still as suitable as ever. Insert songs... well... the school anthem of Sakuragaoka High School was nice, 'Pure Pure Heart' that was used in Episode 7 was catchy and 'Mio-ish', 'Gohan wa Okazu' was retard-- I meant the tune was nice... I'm not sure about the lyrics though? 'U&I' were touching, as that song had a special meaning to it and finally 'Tenshi ni Fureta yo!!' was the best song of the series (other than NO, Thank You!) being able to make me break down to tears right after listening to it... it was so meaningful that it touched both me and Azunyan... XD

Voice Acting: I think a lot of people noticed this by now but all voice actresses of the series (I meant those so-called newbies) have finally felt comfortable with their roles and sound better in a way... (I don't know but, that's how I felt too... :S) Toyosaki Aki, Hikasa Youko, Satou Satomi, Kotobuki Minako, Taketatsu Ayana & all the other voices actresses & actors have done a splendid job voicing their respective characters. They were once newbies and unknown to the world, but look at 'em now! Excluding Sanada Asami, who's the only veteran seiyuu of the anime... LOL.

Recommendation level: AT MAX!!! My gosh, who in his or her right mind won't wanna watch this anime?! Unless he or her doesn't like watching these kind of anime, then well... I apologize... but still! This anime rocks anyones socks off! (Even my non-anime lovers friends and family watch this anime and liked the series a lot!)!!! This anime deserves a high recommendation from me as it's KyoAni's best work so far! ><

Rating: 6/5 (Recommendation: MAX. I mean, look at the rating... XP)

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And now for some news regarding the said series~...

K-ON!! Exclusive Premiere on Animax!!!


Usually Animax wouldn't even do this but I guess this is the power of K-ON!! eh? FYI, it'll be broadcasted at 9:30pm every Wednesday on channel 715! That is... if you're in Malaysia and you've subscribed to this channel. And also, the dubs much better than the 1st Season's, so it's acceptable to watch in both English & Chinese dubs... :)

K-ON! Movie & Bonus OVA Announced!



More info will be posted once announced...

International Saimoe League (ISML) & Saimoe 2010 Winners!

Akiyama Mio & Nakano Azusa!!!!!! They defeated their rivals Misaka Mikoto & Sanzenin Nagi respectively.

K-ON!! voted 'BEST TV ANIMATION' award once again!


And this is how awesome they can get... XD

K-ON!! Gets 2nd Live Event!!!



The 2nd Live has been announced!!! Now should I review the 1st or not...? Hmm...


"For now, this is goodbye K-ON!!... Let's meet again in the near future~!!!"

To Aru Kagaku no Choudenjibou (Railgun) + OVA



Summary (Anime): Academy City is a highly developed place in terms of technology. It is said to be 20 to 30 years ahead of the rest of the world. 80% of it's 2.3 million residents are students. The focus of studies here is directed towards esper powers. Misaka Mikoto, one of the top level espers in town, shares a room with Kuroko Shirai, another high level esper who is a member of Judgement, a law enforcing agency composed of students. Both attend to Tokiwadai, a private school reserved for the high-leveled and the rich. Kuroko's partner at Judgement, Kazari Uiharu, is a low level esper who studies at Sakugawa middle school. Her best friend and classmate there is Ruiko Saten, a level zero (no esper powers). Together, the four encounter several adventures in the exciting scientific town.

After watching 'Index' I just HAD to watch 'Railgun'. After all, I wanted to know more on the Science side than the Magic side... and I had no regrets! Plus, it's better and it shows how much 'Index' sucks compared to this. I would like to add that Misaka Mikoto, the protagonist, is not as annoying and 'tsundere' as she was (and is) in the Magic side, so that's a good point in the Science side.

Reviews:

Storyline: First thing I thought was that this could be rivaled with another slice-of-life series, namely 'K-ON!', whose 2nd season I'll be reviewing on later. 4 girls having fun, CHECK. Hirasawa Yui as a computer pro, CHECK. Well anyways, the storyline's normal slice-of-life story that's enjoyable with action elements in it which is interesting, thus giving it a good storyline. There are lots of touchy moments here and there but it didn't really hit me at the right spot... then there are moments were the perverted Shirai Kuroko tries to get her way with her Onee-sama that makes the story funny. And Saten Ruiko's skirt-flipping habit on Uiharu Kazari makes it funny too. Serious moments too are serious, but not as serious as 'Index', making it more relaxed and enjoyable. 'Course, it ended with a feeling of 'I'll have a 2nd Season soon, so don't worry!', so seeing how 'Index' gets a 2nd Season, why wouldn't 'Railgun' have a '2nd Season'?

Graphics: It's J.C. Staff doing it, so why wouldn't it be awesome? LOL... The graphics are just like 'Index's' with a few enhancement here and there, so no complains here!

Music: Well... this is one of those times where J.C. Staff decides to go with variety instead of repetition of artistes like Kawada Mami and KOTOKO and I thank them with all my heart for that. Instead, they used 'fripside', who so happens to be the voice actress of Maria from my previous CANAAN post, Nanjo Yoshino and as the ending theme singer, they used ELISA (who so happens to be the singer of J.C. Staff's Hayate no Gotoku!! Season 2... repetition here, J.C. Staff?). Both opening themes namely 'Only My Railgun' & 'LEVEL5-Judglight-' were awesome and catchy whereas the ending themes 'Dear My Friends ~Mada Minu Mirai e~' & 'Real Force' were perfect for an ending theme. Iuchi Maiko's handling of 'Railgun's' OST's nice, so no complains here.

Voice Acting: Satou Rina has done it again as Misaka Mikoto! As awesome as always! Arai Satomi as the mischievous, perverted yet cool when it comes to 'Judgement' work - Shirai Kuroko really done her voice acting well and is the true comedian of the 4. Toyosaki Aki voices Uiharu Kazari, Kuroko's assistant in 'Judgement', and she did her job as well as she did in K-ON!... only less... 'moe' and 'cutesy'. Well, scrap that, she's still freaking 'moe', no matter what roles she takes up (excluding a certain role which I'll emphasize in my reviews for another anime)! :S Then we have Hinamori A-- uh no... I meant Itou Kanae as Saten Ruiko who really makes Saten-san sound like Amu sometimes... but did a great job, emotionally and personality wise. Kudos to the main voice actresses and the extras too... lol... (Oh yeah, since Toyosaki & Itou are both Su & Amu in Shugo Chara!, I couldn't help but imagine Amu flipping Su's skirt! XD) Oh! And a bonus thing I noticed is that except Hikasa Youko, the main 4 seiyuu of K-ON!! appear in the anime. Satou Satomi as Edasaki Banri (Railgun version of Ricchan? XD), Kotobuki Minako as Kongo Mitsuko, Taketatsu Ayana as the so-called 'bag girl' that appears in both episodes 6 & 7 and finally Toyosaki Aki, who we know very well that she's one of the main casts.

Recommendation level: HIGH! Especially those who have watched 'Index' and thought it was awesome... (Well, it WAS awesome. XP) And those who love slice-of-life series with action-packed stories installed with it too!

Rating: 5/5 (Highly Recommended, A full score it deserves!)

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Summary: After the Level Upper incident, Misaka Mikoto has a strange sensation that someone is watching her. Different from the usual attention she gets, this piercing sensation that makes her feel like the electricity in her body is flowing backwards starts to disturb her greatly. Committed to help her roommate, Kuroko Shirai asks their mutual friends Kazari Uiharu and Ruiko Saten to help solve this mysterious case.

... And on 29/10/10, an EX OVA (as they called it), was released. And it was awesome. XD


Reviews:

Storyline: More Railgun, more epicness! The OVA was like... 35 mins long... Anyways, the story was funny at times and cool too! This 'Someone's Watching' arc of the series was nice and good enough to keep us on our toes for a 2nd Season...! The ending ended nicely with a happy moment and a 'Kuroko killing' moment, if you know what I mean. XP

Graphics: Just like the TV series of 'Railgun', nothing special to add here.

Music: "Fuwoo... fuwoo... Try to glorious believer.. Just to... go on... realize soulful heart...!" -- Were the lyrics of the extremely awesome opening theme 'future gazer' by fripside once again!!! The opening scene felt like 'K-ON!' (and kudos to J.C. Staff for that) and melancholic at the same time... as if 'With this, 'Railgun' ends.'... Well whatever. The ending theme, 'Special ONE' by ELISA, wasn't as good as the other 2 ending themes from the TV series plus, the ending scene was just bunch of promotion art and in-anime art being used... BGM by Iuchi Maiko, nothing to add there.

Voice Acting: No drop in standards and Arai Satomi brings this OVA to life the most! XD

Recommendation: 'Course after you've watched 'Railgun', you would definitely pick up the OVA right? It's recommended after all. :)

Rating: 4.8/5 (Highly Recommended after viewing TV Series)

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

AFA X Preperations... ON!!! :D

Today's post... well... I suppose it's about the coming AFA X in 9 days at the Suntec Convention Centre in Singapore...

Unlike last year, as you've seen in my previous post about it, I had to beg like mad to go... but this year, I asked my dad if I could attend once again since my friend invited me, he immediately gave me a yes and we booked the ticket to Singapore. My parents & I will be leaving on the 12th of November till the 15th of November. Talk about a surprising answer! :O But now I've learnt from my mistakes and regrets and as a blogger, I will-- no-- MUST take more photos!!! >:O



Anyways, here's the website for you all to view what's goin' on this year...

http://animefestival.asia/

Hmm... I'm not a big fan of Kana Hanazawa-san... I know she's Nadeko Sengoku from Bakemonogatari, Tachibana Kanade from Angel Beats! & Sonohara Anri from Durarara!! but still... well whatever, last year's was epic, so maybe this year I'll just be going to get some merchandises and well... see May'n? XD

This year, I'm geared up for it! And by geared up, I meant my attire for the festival.

For Day 1, I'll be 'semi-cosplaying' as Tainaka Ritsu from K-ON!! in her 'NO, Thank You!' outfit. No, not the one with the hoodie... the school uniform. ^^;

And FYI, I'm not a cosplayer. So this will be my first time 'semi-cosplaying' a character... IN PUBLIC. And if you ask "What's up with the 'semi-cosplaying'?", I meant I won't be wearing a wig, contact lens and yes, I MAY have Ritsu's headband as it was a present from my friend, but NO, I won't be putting it on! >:(

Here's how she looks like... well... side view... :S



And here's my version of it...



Well... here it is... the general layout of it. Since Ritsu has her sleeve folded, I'll be folding it up too... and she didn't button her coat, so that's a good thing for me as I'm sure it'll be seriously hot in the convention... thankfully I'm a Ritsu fan... if I was a Tsumugi fan... I think I'll faint since she's wearing like... 3 layers of clothing. :S

A-Anyways, moving on...



A close-up of the upper clothing... (I dunno how to express this part of the clothes... :S)



And if you thought I'd forgotten, this is the skirt used in both the manga version of K-ON! and the ending theme itself. Of course, if you're a real hardcore K-ON! fan, you'll notice that this is Mio's version of the skirt... the others have a different colour scheme... well... it's quite hard to express in words...

As for Day 2, I've decided to wear a custom-made anime T-Shirt with a short-sleeve hoodie to make it less embarrassing... XD



The front of the T-Shirt... as you may know, she's the main protagonist of anime & manga 'To Aru Kagaku no Railgun (Railgun's also known as Choudenjibou in Japanese)', Misaka Mikoto. I'll talk more about the anime itself after this post as I'll be reviewing it.

Surprised it isn't a K-ON! T-Shirt huh? Railgun needs some love too, you know? XP



A close up on Mikoto...



The logo of the prestigious Tokiwadai Middle School where Mikoto & her friend Shirai Kuroko are schooling at...



Finally on the right sleeve, the title 'logo' of 'To Aru Kagaku no Railgun'. A nice finishing touch to a T-Shirt.

Welp~... That's about it! Thanks for reading! I'll be sure to do a review on the coming AFA X so do tune in for more!

Ah... before I sign off, here are two videos of the two anime mentioned above!

video

NO, Thank You! - 2nd Ending Theme of K-ON!! by Hikasa Yoko.

video

future gazer - Opening Theme of To Aru Kagaku no Railgun OVA by fripside.

A'ite~! Time to sign off! Do enjoy the vids!