Dueling villains

To pass the time until the ending of Madoka is subtitled, here’s a little poll. (Light won the earlier “best villain” poll.)

Story or fanservice?

Which series will first be licensed for region one DVD: Fractale, Mahou Shoujo Madoka?Magica or Rio – Rainbow Gate!? (Haven’t been watching Rio? Neither have I, but Wonderduck has. You can share his pain here, here, here, here and here.)

Update: And the winner is Fractale. I suppose I should be glad it wasn’t Rio, but bleah.

Round two

Who are the most frightening girls in the poll at right? You can vote for up to three. The top five will advance to the final round, where they will face the winners of the first round, Lucy/Nyuu (Elfen Lied), Shion Sonozaki (Higurashi no Naku Koro ni), Chloe (Noir), Enma Ai (Hell Girl) and Haruhi Suzumiya (The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya).

Pedantic footnote

The sorta-official alternative title for Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica is “Puella Magi Madoka Magica.” Grrr. “Puella” (“girl,” nominative singular) is a feminine noun in Latin, so the proper form of the adjective “magus” (“magic”) is “maga,” not “magi.” I suppose whoever is responsible was trying to avoid calling the show “Magical Girl Magical Madoka.” I’d suggest either sticking with “Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica” or just calling the series “Magical Madoka.”

Update: Maureen interprets the title differently in the comments below. She may well be right, but I’m not convinced that it’s what the SHAFT staff had in mind.


Irresponsible speculation: between whom will the final battle be?

New poll: who’s the most frightening?

I ended up with 31 nominees for the title of “scariest girl in anime.” There will be two preliminary rounds, in which you can vote for three. The top five in each round will advance to the finals.

Here is the list of candidates:

Bernkastel (Umineko no Naku Koro ni)
Chloe (Noir)
Diva (Blood+)
Dokuro-chan (Bludgeoning Angel Dokuro-chan)
Eda (Black Lagoon)
Enma Ai (Hell Girl)
Eva-Beatrice (Umineko no Naku Koro ni)
Gretel (Black Lagoon)
Haruhi Suzumiya (The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya)
Hitagi Senjougahara (Bakemonogatari)
Kaede Fuyou (Shuffle)
Kirika Yumura (Noir)
Lain Iwakura (Serial Experiments Lain)
LamdaDelta (Umineko no Naku Koro ni)
Lucy/Nyu (Elfen Lied)
Maria Ushiromiya (Umineko no Naku Koro ni)
Miyabi Aizawa (Great Teacher Onizuka)
Miyu (Vampire Princess Miyu)
Mylanndah Arkar Walder (Battle Athletes)
Nanami Yasuri (Katanagatari)
Punie Tanaka (Magical Witch Punie-chan)
Rena Ry?g? (Higurashi no Naku Koro ni)
Revy (Black Lagoon)
Rico (Gunslinger Girl)
Road Kamelot (D. Grey Man)
Ryoko Asakura (The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya)
Satomi Ozawa (Shadow Star Narutaru)
Shion Sonozaki (Higurashi no Naku Koro ni)
Tiriel (Shakugan no Shana)
Urumi Kanzaki (Great Teacher Onizuka)
Yomi Isayama (Ga-Rei Zero)

If there is someone missing whom you think should absolutely be on the list, mention her in a comment. I might be able to squeeze one or two more candidates into the second round.


To nobody’s surprise, Cowboy Bebop placed first in the “best opening” poll, and Baccano did very well also. What I didn’t expect was Lucky Star‘s strong showing. I doubted that it would even make the finals, but for a while it looked like it would overtake Cowboy Bebop.

Here are the final standings:

Cowboy Bebop (23.0%)
Lucky Star (17.0%)
Baccano! (12.0%)
Haibane Renmei (12.0%)
Paranoia Agent (9.0%)
Higurashi No Naka Koro Ni (9.0%)
Last Exile (9.0%)
Serial Experiments Lain (4.0%)
Noir (3.0%)
Toradora (3.0%)

Here’s a list

Here are the nominees so far for the scariest girl in anime:

Aizawa (Great Teacher Onizuka)
Asakura (The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya)
Chloe (Noir)
Diva (Blood Plus)
Dokuro (Bludgeoning Angel Dokuro-chan)
Enma Ai (Hell Girl)
Kaede (Shuffle)
Kansaki (Great Teacher Onizuka)
Kirika (Noir)
Lain (Serial Experiments Lain)
Lucy/Nyu (Elfen Lied)
Marie (Umineko)
Miyu (Vampire Princess Miyu)
Nanami (Katanagatari)
Punie (Magical Witch Punie-chan)
Rena (Higurashi)
Rico (Gunslinger Girls)
Road Kamelot (D. Grey Man)
Satomi (Shadow Star Narutaru)
Shion (Higurashi)
Yomi (Ga-Rei Zero)

Who else? Also, would someone care to nominate a specific Claymore?

Post script: It would be helpful if you name specific characters. I haven’t yet seen Black Lagoon, and I will probably never watch School Days, so I don’t know which characters are which in those. Thank you.

Call for nominations

Who is the scariest girl in anime? When Nanami smiled in Katanagatari, it occurred to me that the question might be worth a poll. So, which young women give you nightmares? Besides Nanami, some candidates might be Kirika and Chloe from Noir, Punie from Magical Witch Punie-chan, Yomi from Ga-Rei Zero, perhaps Lain Iwakura and Sailor Saturn. Who else? List your nominations in the comments.


By the way, does anyone know how to get in touch with Lain and Kirika? My site was inaccessible from mid-afternoon until just now (10:30 p.m.), and I’m a wee bit irritated. According to the hosting service:

The datacenter in which [xxx].com resides, has blocked the primary IP of the server due to a phishing complaint for a client utilizing the IP. The issue has since been resolved. Technicians at the datacenter have been made aware of this and we are awaiting them to unblock the IP. Connectivity to WHM/E-Mail/FTP and Web services maybe interrupted for any clients that are using this IP until the block is removed.

I figure that Lain can easily determine who the culprits are, and Kirika can deal with them appropriately.

Vocabulary question

This has nothing to do with anime. It’s just a minor issue that came up at work this morning.

Vocabulary question

Here’s a little poll related to an issue that came up at work this morning.

New poll

Which anime has the best opening? I ended up with over 30 candidates, so I’m going to do this in two rounds. In the current one, you can vote for up to three openings. The ten with the most votes will advance to the final round.

I found videos for most, but there were a couple that eluded me. If the openings to Dennou Coil and season one of Hare & Guu exist somewhere on the web, please send me the links. It will save me the trouble of extracting them myself. Update: I have Dennou Coil up now, but I still need Hare & Guu.

If there is an opening missing that you feel absolutely must be in the poll, please make a note of it in the comments and include a Youtube link. Maybe — maybe — I can add it.

Please note that not all these openings are “family-friendly.” I put a couple that might be problematic inside spoilers.

Continue reading “New poll”

Boo, hiss

Light Yagami is the best villain in anime, with more than twice the votes of his nearest competition, Johan. Sephiroth came in third and Gendo Ikari fourth. There’s a three-way tie for fifth place between Knives, Lord Genome and Vicious. Ladd Russo and Beatrice tied for eighth, and Lord Shishio and Orochimaru tied for tenth. Other candidates receiving votes were Lust, Diva, Vegeta, Char Asnable, Yomi Isayama, Friagne, Millennium Earl, Leader Desslok, King Hamdo, Joker, Cell, Queen Beryl, Frieza and Piccolo Daimao.

There’s a new poll up.

Call for nominations

It looks like Light Yagami is the best villain in the history of anime, at least for this week, with Gendo Ikari as a distant runner-up. So, let’s get started on the next poll. Which do you think is the best anime opening? Which exhibits the most creative combination of good music and imagery and is appropriate to its series? Here are some possiblities:

Azumanga Daioh
Cowboy Bebop
Haibane Renmei
Lucky Star
Paranoia Agent
Ramen Fighter Miki
Serial Experiments Lain

What else? Post your nominations in the comments, if possible with YouTube links.

New poll

Who’s the best villain in anime? Cast your vote in the poll to the right.


The most annoying character in anime is, inevitably, Shinji Ikari, with 28% of the vote in the previous poll. Voters were also seriously irritated by ChibiUsa, 15%; Happosai, 14%; C-ko, 10%; Kimura, 8%; and Tomo Takino, 6%. Nanami, Pain, Jinnai, NB, Basera Neki, Naga, Gauron and Kazuhara each received fewer than ten votes of the 179 cast.

Anyone else?

Here are the nominees thus far for best villain in anime.

Johan (Monster)
Cell (Dragonball Z)
Friagne (Shakugan no Shana)
Sephiroth (Final Fantasy)
Light Yagami (Death Note)
Leader Desslok (Space Battleship Yamato)
Lord Genome, the Spiral King (Gurren Lagann)
Gendo Ikari (Neon Genesis Evangelion)
Ladd Russo (Baccano)
King Hamdo (Now and Then, Here and There)
Beatrice (Umineko no Naku Koro ni)
Piccoro Daimaou (Dragon Ball)
Joker (ROD TV)
Charles Solomon ((Not eligible for technical reasons.))
Yomi Isayama (Ga-Rei Zero)
Vegeta (Dragonball Z)
Freeza (Dragonball Z)
Lust (Full Metal Alchemist)
Lord Shishio (Rurouni Kenshin)
Char Asnable (Gundam)

Considering the number of bad guys throughout anime, this is a surprisingly short list. Who else should be on it?


John C. Wright declared that April 22, widely observed as Lenin’s birthday “Earth Day,” was actually Pluto Day. Is Pluto really a planet? Of course it is; else why would it have its own Sailor Senshi?


I recently found “Dennou Coil licensed” and “Dennou Coil Media Blasters” among recent search terms. Has the best show of recent years finally been licensed, or do the searches indicate wishful thinking? The latter, apparently. However, I do note that The Tatami Galaxy (Yojo-han Shinwa Taikei) has been licensed for streaming by Funimation, and if it is now possible to watch Masaaki Yuasa legally online, then there is still some hope that we may yet see Mitsuo Iso on DVD.


Leiji Matsumoto made a video for “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

(Via Ogiue Matrix.)

It doesn’t work particularly well — the images have nothing to do with the lyrics — but it’s worth watching once for the curiosity value. If you want to see a better example of combining music with the Leijiverse, I recommend Interstella 5555. The best video of “Bohemian Rhapsody” remains the Muppets’.