Miscellaneous notes, anime edition

Let’s see ….

I’ll probably watch Kino’s Journey II to the end, even though none of the three episodes so far have been memorable. The older series is not streaming legally anywhere I’m aware of, which is a shame.

I’ll probably also continue with The Ancient Magus’ Bride, even though the third episode, about the last flight of an old dragon, was disgustingly sentimental. It was set in Iceland, a land of glaciers and volcanoes where continental plates meet, but instead of Hekla or Bárðarbunga, we get a linden tree.1

Tilia sp.

Urahara is like a can of pink icing: sweet, with no substance. Recommended only if you like pastel colors.

I wish I could like Recommendation of the Wonderful Virtual Life. I gave the third episode a try after quitting part-way through the second, but it was no use. The main character is too clueless to be sympathetic. I can understand being socially awkward, but MoriMori-chan is just plain stupid.

I dropped A Sister’s All You Need in less than five seconds. That’s a record.

I would like to watch Hozuki no Reitetsu II, which is streaming on Hi-Dive. I’m also curious about Girls’ Last Tour, which is streaming on Amazon Strike, as is Made in Abyss, which apparently was the only series from last summer worth watching. Hi-Dive requires a paid membership. Amazon Strike requires an additional fee above that for Amazon Prime (which is less and less prime as time goes on; two-day delivery nowadays takes three to five days). There isn’t much else on these services that I want to see, and what they do have is mostly dubbed. I don’t have unlimited funds for entertainment, and anime is not a primary interest these days. (I’ve spent far more time recently comparing different recordings of Beethoven’s piano sonatas than I have watching animated shows.) It’s hard to justify paying for additional memberships when there are only one or two shows worth my time on each site. For now, I’ll stick to Crunchyroll.

Crunchyroll has been steadily adding older shows to its catalog, some of them very good. If you’re a speed reader, Masaaki Yuasa’s The Tatami Galaxy is worth your time. If you like vast international conspiracies but find Dan Brown stupid, there’s Koichi Mashimo’s Noir. The latter features a soundtrack by Yuki Kajiura; when Mashimo recycles animation (and Noir is partly an exercise in recycling), you can close your eyes and just listen to the music.

Haruhi greets the president of the computer club

Crunchyroll has also added The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, albeit in the wrong, chronological order. It’s also the wrong Haruhi. The right one is Haruhi Fujioka from Ouran High School Host Club, a much better series than its distasteful premise would suggest.

Batman Ninja sounds ridiculous, but the movie might actually be worth watching. The writer is Kazuki Nakashima, whose credits include Gurren-Lagann and Kill la Kill, and who wrote the play that Oh! Edo Rocket is based on. He knows something about heroism.

Believe it or not, the New York Times posted an article on anime that I partially agree with. Their top five are also my top five, though not in that order. (#6, though, is way too high.)


  1. Tilia sp., or “lime tree.” I made one of my professors in college quite angry when I pointed out that the trees in Coleridge’s bower were probably these and not the citrus fruit he had visualized.