The Vision of Escaflowne dates back to 1996, when animators understood the concept “nose.” Crunchyroll recently added it to their library. It’s allegedly a classic, but three episodes in, I’m not convinced. It seems to be an attempt to combine as many genres as possible. It’s partly shoujo, partly shounen, partly mecha, partly science-fiction, partly fantasy, partly romance, partly war story, partly whatever. Aside from the noses, the show is noteworthy mainly for the soundtrack, composed by Yoko Kanno and her then-husband, Hajime Mizoguchi.1 I may watch more, or I may not.
Laid-Back Camp may be the best show currently airing, but it is not recommended for Fridays in Lent.
I have two Japanese calendars this year. Hozuki no Reitetsu is the usual poster-sized six-pager (one large picture for two months, rather than one smaller picture per month). Girls und Panzer, however, is a single sheet about six feet long, larger than I had expected (when shopping on foreign websites, alway convert centimeters to inches before you order). Amazingly, it arrived uncreased, even though it came loosely rolled in a box rather than in a stout tube. I eventually figured out a place to mount it. Right-click and open in a new window to see the picture at maximum size.
New Zealand must have lax or poorly enforced copyright laws. An outfit called “Pixiluv” that ships from there advertises numerous calendars on Amazon.com. Many feature old art and advertisements that are, or should be, out of copyright everywhere, but quite a few others display recent illustrations, such as the Katanagatari calendar above.1
From the Heath Robinson calendar that I got instead of Ogdred Weary this year. (Right-click and open in a new window to see all the details.)
I watched an episode of Ninja Nonsense, which turned out to be oddly topical.
(Ninja Nonsense is often funny, but it is too off-color to generally recommend. Not even Norio Wakamoto can make Onsokumaru tolerable for long.)
Update: Here’s a list of write-in candidates for president. Those running include
• Raff, Riff, of Notre Dame, Indiana
• Bunny, Soul, of Williams Bay, Wisconsin
• Vader, Darth, of Spokane, Washington
• Mouse, Mickey, of Anaheim, California
• The Elf, Buddy, of North Pole, Alaska
• Hydrox, Cookie, of Newport Coast, California
These and the others on the list are all better choices than any of those offered by the political parties.
Tanaka-kun Is Always Listless — So listless, in fact, that his friend Ohta often picks him up and carries him over his shoulder. However lazy Tanaka is physically, though, his mind is active, at least until he falls asleep. It’s a one-joke show, but it has remained entertaining through three episodes with the introductions of Tanaka’s quirky classmates.
Natsume Yuujin-cho, episode 9.
Let no screencap go to waste: miscellaneous illustrations for posts I didn’t write.
The Perfect Insider has very good opening and closing animations. The stuff in between, which falls somewhere between a locked-room mystery and And Then There Were None and concerns people tediously self-conscious of their high IQs, is less enthralling. I did spot a pair of red half-rim spectacles, though. If there were any rubber ducks, I missed them.
Speaking of ATTWN, here’s Eve Tushnet on Agatha Christie: “Never trust the cute ones.”
Think carefully about how you name your children, even if you’re fictional characters. This goes double when you’re royalty.
One of the novelties of this week’s episode of GATE is that next week’s preview was in the middle of the show. I’m curious to see if there will be any Wagner.
Update: Yep, there was a little Wagner, with helicopters.
I’m in the middle of a complicated project, and I’ll probably remain scarce for a while. The picture above is a sort of preview.
From the previews for episode 18 of Wagaya no Oinari-sama, or Our Home’s Fox Deity. The duckies in the preview did not appear in the episode itself.
I recently got a blu-ray drive for my computer. For the first movie to watch at 1080p, I picked Redline. It was a good choice. Although there are plenty of digital effects employed in the 2009 movie, all the characters, all the cars — everything — are hand-drawn, and it shows. The last half-hour is the most spectacular anime I’ve seen since the end of Akira, and the whole movie is gorgeous. The screencaps here are all from the first twelve minutes.
Redline opens and closes with wild road races. In between, there is a romance, interference from the mafia, and a repressive government up to No Good, but the story doesn’t get in the way. The movie is pure eye candy.