Small Hiatus

Hey there!

This is gonna be a super small and quick post, simply because of my schedule. I just tweeted about it, but I’ll also make a full-out post, just to give this maximum visibility.

I’ll be going on hiatus until August 15th. There’s a couple of reasons why I’ll be doing so, but I don’t have the time to go into it right now. The biggest thing, though, is I’m just busy. This site doesn’t take up too much of my time, but as you can tell, I haven’t even had the time to update it properly.

Anyway, I gotta go. I’ll see you all when I return!

AnimeBird

Review: Flying Witch

You have a slice-of-life, you have a fantasy element, you have school kids in not-Tokyo-for-once, Japan… this seems like all the right elements in a formula for a great show. … But is it really that great?

An Introduction

We’re introduced to Makoto, a teenage girl who’s traveled all the way to picturesque Aomori, Japan to live with some relatives in a nice, traditional-looking house. This journey wasn’t for a vacation though; Makoto has some training to do! For you see, this kind-hearted, black-haired girl also has a big secret: she’s the youngest of a family of witches! Makoto isn’t a very skilled witch, though (why else would she be looking to do some training?), but she manages to impress her family and friends anyway! … If not simply because of how airheaded she is.

Speaking of family, the relatives she’s living with are her cousins Kei and Chinatsu. Kei and Makoto attend the same high school, and they both feature that easy-going personality. Chinatsu is a decent amount younger than Kei, and still contains all the whimsy and curiosity of a little kid. As well, we’re introduced to Makoto’s own sister: Akane. A witch with abilities well into the advanced levels, Akane spends most of her time traveling the world… and when she does drop by for a visit, there’s also a decent amount of alcohol and sleeping involved too.

With her family helping her along every step of the way, and optimistic about meeting new friends, seeing new places, and learning new witch abilities, Makoto is excited to see what’s next on her journey here in Aomori.

The Plot and Characters

Usually I start writing a review about halfway through a series, as my thoughts on said series begin to settle, but I don’t finish the review until about when I finish the show (in case there’s something that changes or happens in the latter half). In this case, however, I don’t see myself watching past episode 6 of this series.

I have a pretty good idea of what I’m looking at with this show, and while it isn’t bad, I certainly haven’t been getting much enjoyment out of it. A friend had recommended this show to me, saying that it seemed something right up my alley, and so I went into it with relatively high expectations (as this friend tends to like some pretty awesome shows). Honestly, if I started off Flying Witch with little to no expectation of what I’d get out of it, I may have seen myself enjoying it more. We can’t go back and do anything about it now, though.

The reason I put the review of this show up on the same day as (EDIT: I mean, a week after) my Tanaka-kun is Always Listless review, is because while watching this, I kept comparing this show back to Tanaka-kun. Both aired in the same Spring 2016 season, and set out to be a relaxed, light-hearted slice-of-life anime. However, there is definitely one I enjoyed more than the other.

Flying Witch’s humor just did not strike me in the right way. I knew where it was making its jokes, and what those jokes were, but I just didn’t find them funny. I’d even venture to say that the humor in this show just isn’t good, but honestly, it may just be that it doesn’t really work with my style. It’s very simple humor; there’s no really complex set ups or anything, and a number of the jokes are simply tossed out like nothing.

Another difficulty that probably aggravates this is the fact that I feel all of the characters have the exact same personality in my eyes. Comparing it to Tanaka-kun, GJ Club, or Nisekoi, where each character had a different and unique personality, I feel almost all of the characters in Flying Witch would react the same way no matter what situation you threw at them. The only thing that really differentiates these characters is a small list of quirks each one has, and a possibly different end goal they want to reach, but all in all, I feel they all act the same. Each of them is smiley, bubbly, and is overall super kind and easy-going. I’m not sure if I’d call these characters “fake”, but I begin to lose the feeling that these could be actual people, the further I get into this show. The only character that I felt could be somewhat human-like was Makoto’s cat, Chito.

The character I definitely disliked the most is Chinatsu. She’s supposed to be this little kid, but I feel like whoever wrote her character doesn’t totally get the mind of a little kid. Chinatsu comes off as fickle and inconsistent to me, sometimes surprisingly mature and other times resoundingly childish. She starts the first episode with a complete disdain for Makoto, but she completely flips her position by the end of the 23 minutes. She spends the second episode scared of (and sometimes kind of mean to) a magical creature that came by, so the first two episodes made me think Chinatsu is shy and easily scared of what she doesn’t know. However, every episode after that shows her being extremely cheerful, and happily getting along with all the new characters she meets. Episode 4 shows her going up to a creepy-looking fortune teller she’s never seen before, and just striking up a full conversation with her, with no signs of shyness at all.

The pacing isn’t all that bad in this series, although it could also be tightened in a few areas. There’s points where I felt it focused on one scene for a bit too long, and had some dead air moments that definitely didn’t help.

Overall, I can’t say I hate this show, though. It’s probably not going to be one I’ll finish (or if I do, it will be a struggle, although I’ve previously pushed myself through shows that were a struggle too), but I’m sure there are others out there that got a lot more out of this series than I did. I did laugh at a couple points (more than I have at a few other comedy shows, so I’ll give it that), but I don’t want to watch a show where I only get any enjoyable moments every other episode.

I also kind of wished this show focused a bit more on the whole being-a-witch thing. I felt it would’ve been pretty cool to have a slice-of-life series that slowly showed us its world of witches, especially since I feel like this show really could have some stuff to say about it. However, although there’s definitely been scenes and stories that involve Makoto’s status as a witch, I wish there was more, and I wish it went a bit deeper with those. That being said, with how episode 6 went, maybe this series will skew more in that direction in the latter half; however, I don’t think I’ll be sticking around to find out.

The Atmosphere

The animation of this series isn’t the most fluid either, and also detracts from the effectiveness of some of its jokes. It almost feels at times that they put some sequences at double speed or something, because they made too many frames for it. While I won’t say Flying Witch is terrible at comedic timing, it does have a lot of room to improve, especially if they’re visual gags.

Besides that, though, the art and animation of this show is pretty alright. When this show wants to show a beautiful scene, it can. While I’ve seen other shows with much better visuals, I can still appreciate some of the backgrounds featured in Flying Witch too. I’m not the biggest fan of these character designs, but they’re not terrible, and I appreciate the variety of outfits the animators/artists have the characters wear throughout the series.

When it comes to the coloring though, I again have to compare this show to Tanaka-kun and GJ Club. Both of them featured pretty bright colors that helped with the atmosphere of the show, and made it feel a bit more cheerful. Here, the colors just… aren’t. I’d say the colors seem a bit more realistic, but it also comes off as a bit duller, and just not really matching up with how this show wants to present itself.

About 6 episodes in, I can’t necessarily think of a single piece of background music that really stands out to me. As I’ve said in previous reviews, I really only remember a show’s background music if it stands out as unique or interesting, and Flying Witch, like most shows, doesn’t really do that here. I can’t say the background music is bad, but it does feel rather generic. The standard usage of pitched percussion, woodwinds, and the occasional guitar and piano is replicated here. I will say that it feels like they really quieted down the music whenever there was dialogue… like more than what is usual, I feel like.

There are scenes where there just isn’t any music though, and I feel they did that, thinking that the jokes and dialogue of a scene would be enough to cover it. However, because the jokes or dialogue failed to really elicit a reaction out of me, it made the scenes feel even emptier and a bit more awkward.

I grew to enjoy the opening theme more, as I watched through the show. It’s not a theme I’ll want to listen to much on its own, but I enjoyed it for this show. The opening animation is not bad, but I didn’t enjoy it very much. The dancing and singing characters at the latter portion of it, for some reason, just came off as weird to me. The ending song is not bad either, but I also can’t say I enjoyed it much. The ending animation is one of the places where the show put in some pretty nice-looking background art, even if the rest of it wasn’t all that spectacular.

I honestly don’t have too much of an issue with the voices used in this series, except one: Kei. I didn’t like the sound of his voice at all in episode 1, and I thought maybe I’d warm up to it as the series went on. After episode 6, though, I still don’t like his voice all that much. The role of Kei is seiyuu Shinsuke Sugawara’s first major role though; I can only hope he does better in future productions. Him as Kei, though, sounds like he had his nose plugged the entire time, and it just… didn’t sound right.

Final Remarks / TL;DR

I almost feel like I should’ve gotten some sort of lesson out of this series, whether it’s about trusting friends’ recommendations, or about what expectations I should have when going into a show, or something. Overall, though, this show was a no-go for me; I gave it 6 episodes, and while I may try to get through more of it at some point in the future, it wouldn’t be surprising if I never really touched it again. The comedy just didn’t work for me, and the characters all had the same personality… I feel like every positive thing I have to say about this show comes with a negative, if not more than one per.

I won’t say others should avoid this show, because it’s possible that someone else could really get something more out of this than I can. However, if someone asked me for a fun slice-of-life show, this wouldn’t be one I point them towards. If you’re really looking for something light-hearted and that features witches, I’d suggest you give Sabrina the Teenage Witch a try.

Rating: Bad
Recommendation: Give It a Shot
+++ had nice background visuals at times, a few amusing moments although they were few and far between, Chito was enjoyable enough and seemed like the only personable character
— many jokes did not land and received little enjoyment out of this series, Chinatsu, Kei’s voice

Review: Is it Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?

Short answer: maybe.

Long answer: well, depending upon who you are, who the girl is, where in the dungeon you are, what you’re doing in the dungeon, and what kind of equipment and party members you have. There’s a lot of variables in play here, you see.

Anyway, this show’s long and strange title captured the attention of a few of my friends; thus, they started watching it, and pulled me in as well. I frankly probably wouldn’t have bothered with this series if it weren’t for those friends.

(The show’s title is usually shortened down to “DanMachi”, based upon the Japanese title.)

An Introduction

This alternate universe is basically an RPG come to life. Concepts like “levels”, “status points”, “item drops”, and so on are real things that each person deals with in one way or another. The economy revolves around people called warriors entering into dungeons, defeating monsters at a level they can do well at, and use the monster’s drops in exchange for money and goods. Like I said, it’s like a real-life RPG.

So who’s our protagonist? Why, he’s this white-haired, young warrior with a lot to learn, named Bell Cranel. Bell is your well-meaning good guy, just wanting for himself and those he cares about to be happy. He goes out to the dungeon each day, sticking to the low-numbered levels (as he’s not that strong yet), and uses whatever items he gets for money so he can live in a cozy house, just himself and the goddess he’s sworn loyalty to, Hestia.

Our story begins with Hestia discovering a powerful ability that Bell possesses, but she keeps it a secret from him. Sure enough, thanks to this ability (along with some pure luck), he becomes an increasingly powerful warrior with almost unprecedented speed. However, his quick rise towards the top has not come without catching the attention of a few shady folks…

The Plot and Characters

The world these characters are in was one of the most fascinating things I find about this series, and I’m glad they spent a decent amount of time on world-building here. As much as I might (and shall) complain about everything else, the world and concept of this story keeps me fascinated and enticed.

DanMachi’s plot surprised me to some extent with a few of its unique plot points and characters. Liliruca, Bell’s “supporter” (someone who follows you around in a dungeon, carrying everything you could want or need) first appeared in episode 3 and I found her backstory surprisingly emotional (well, for this show, anyway), and she became my most favorite character in the series (her snarky comments in later episodes solidified it for me). The conflict between Hestia and the other gods also intrigued me too.

However, this all being said, the show has some generic-ness to it. Bell, for all intents and purposes, is your generic kind-hearted protagonist: he’s extremely powerful, attracts the attention of multiple girls, but yet is ridiculously kind and ridiculously dense. Hestia plays the generic jealous love interest in most aspects, although she sometimes has some interesting moments. Most notably, though, is the generic ending to the anime series. To not give away too many spoilers, the ending focuses upon a battle against a giant monster, with everyone “holding the monster back” until Bell could show up in the last two minutes and use this brand-new, super-powerful finishing move. The show’s ending really wasn’t that impactful, and I wish they went with something more clever.

Other supporting characters in the show are: Aiz Wallenstein, a revered warrior filling the “silent but deadly” trope, she caught Bell’s eye after she saved him from a minotaur (admittedly, seeing the two of them grow a bit closer later on in the series is a bit cute); Welf Crozzo is a blacksmith-turned-warrior who appears too late in the series to really leave much of an impact (despite him being shown prominently in both the opening and ending animations. You’d think that when he finally makes his appearance, he’d instantly become someone really memorable, but unfortunately, he’s not); Syr Flova and Eina Tulle are two girls that work at a pub and the guild building, respectively, and both have feelings for Bell, but are overall not too noteworthy.

I really liked DanMachi when it focused upon the world and the actual conflicts, and those were enough to keep me intrigued week after week while it aired. However, when it spent time on Bell’s interaction with all these girls that had crushes on him, that’s where it started to drag. If the characters were less generic or if there was less of the generic dense-male-lead-with-harem going on, I would have enjoyed the series a lot more. The generic ending really disappointed me too, keeping me from walking away from the show with a positive reaction.

In fact, there’s something called the Bechdel test, which basically states that for a show/movie/etc. to pass, it must have two women talk to each other about something other than a man. I don’t generally like to spend my time talking about such tests, as something like that never tells the whole story, but I would say that this show probably doesn’t pass this test. Where the show’s female characters do interact, it’s usually to continue with the whole harem thing the show is trying to push on us. DanMachi can do better without it being there. But of course, it’s what helps sell anime (or what the companies think help sell anime).

The show’s pacing was as you’d expect for an action series, with it generally sticking to a rather decent not-too-fast-but-not-that-slow pace, and with it sometimes picking up and slowing down depending upon the scene and action.

The Atmosphere

The show’s visuals are good. I really liked the color scheme used in the show, with a variety of colors used, and a number of them being bright and vibrant. The backgrounds are detailed and the character designs just work for the show. The animation was good, even during the action sequences. Simply put, the battles were really cool to watch.

(Actually, one other thing about character designs: that of Hestia. That small purple ribbon that’s purported to hold up her breasts ended up creating a bit of a meme in Japan as the show started up; halfway through the show’s airing though, the interest in it died down. Personally, I don’t really have much an opinion on the design, but if I were forced to say something, I’d have to say it looked a bit ridiculous.)

Audio-wise, it’s basically your standard orchestral stuff you hear in most anime nowadays. Frankly, unless a show does something special or uncommon with its background music, I won’t even remember it when I look back on the show. So that being said, there’s nothing really memorable about this one’s, but it does suit the show well enough. DanMachi’s opening theme isn’t particularly great, but it’ll get stuck in your head, whether you like it or not. I also took a liking to the opening animation, although it wasn’t really that extraordinary. The ending theme and animation are, in my opinion, great, though; I really like the bright colors and the upbeat song with the interjecting horns.

I almost wish they casted someone else for Bell other than Yoshitsugu Matsuoka. His voice isn’t annoying or anything, and there were spots where I think he was voiced rather well. I also know the voice actor is talented due to how he does Sora in No Game No Life. However, I feel someone else’s voice may have hit Bell’s character more on the mark than his. Other than that, in regards to the voice acting, there really isn’t anything to mention. I don’t know if Sentai will dub it, but if they do, I’ll be expecting a “decent-but-not-great” performance. (EDIT: Sentai announced at Anime Expo 2016 that they will be dubbing it. I stand by my remark.)

Final Remarks / TL;DR

The most interesting parts about Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?, besides its title, are its fascinating world and the points where it stayed away from all the girls and their crushes on Bell. The show’s visuals are deceptively good though. All in all, the show kept intrigued and coming back week after week; however, the generic elements and disappointing ending soured my experience of the whole thing.

Despite everything though, I can’t not recommend this show. The action is definitely present in this series, and it is a lot of fun to watch. The way that RPG elements are handled here, as if they were real life concepts, is an interesting concept that will add to people’s enjoyment. This is an obvious choice for action series lovers. For those wanting a show that stays away from some of the more common pitfalls of anime though, DanMachi probably won’t cut it for you.

Rating: Average

Recommendation: If You Like This Genre

+++ great visuals featuring bright colors and well-animated action, fascinating world, Liliruca is a fun character

— harem stuff detracts from enjoyment, ending is disappointing, Welf doesn’t show up until too late in the series

Review: Tanaka-kun is Always Listless

I feel this is one of those anime titles that just doesn’t sound right in English, mainly because they picked a relatively-obscure word that isn’t used as much in everyday conversation. Perhaps that’s my experience though; maybe elsewhere in the English-speaking world, “listless” is used all of the time. I can’t say I’ve never heard of this word, although it’s usually the adverbial form “listlessly”. Regardless, we’re here to actually talk about the show itself, not its title!

An Introduction

Our main character is a relatively skinny and unassuming high school guy named Tanaka-kun. He generally means well – he’s not really malicious or anything of the sort – but he tends to prioritize his own laziness and care-free nature over pretty much everything else. He sleeps in class, he slowly moves from place to place, he gets just the least amount of work done to get by, and just lazes around for everything else. Honestly, one could question how he’d ever be able to get through life.

The answer to such a hypothetical question: Ohta-kun. Big, tall, and blonde, he’s Tanaka-kun’s classmate and best friend, doing his best to make sure Tanaka-kun is doing alright (or at the very least, staying out of trouble). While you may think Ohta could be menacing and scary looking, he’s more of a big, soft, kind bear. He goes way out of his way to help everyone he can, even if it puts himself in danger. The sight of Ohta carrying Tanaka from class to class is a common thing in this high school.

Along with that, we have a few female friends thrown in the mix too. Miyano is a short, super-energetic classmate of Tanaka’s, and puts 110% effort into everything she does… something that doesn’t exactly work when she decides to become Tanaka’s apprentice to learn how to be lazy. Echizen is Miyano’s best friend (and Ohta’s neighbor) with a hard, delinquent-type outside, but a soft, chewy inside. Finally, there’s Shiraishi, the well-adored, popular class president, but with a big secret.

Altogether, we get to see these five friends as they go about their lives, and their laziness, in the slice-of-life adventure that is high school…

The Plot and Characters

I’m a relatively big fan of a show with a relaxed pace. I prefer going through a relaxed pace in my life itself, so it’s cool to see a show that doesn’t need to be throwing stuff at you every second to still be enjoyable. One of the more infamous slow-paced shows of late is Glasslip, which I really enjoyed… when the supernatural stuff wasn’t mucking up the plot.

Tanaka-kun has no supernatural abilities or anything though. This show is pretty squarely in the slice-of-life genre, mainly featuring Tanaka, Ohta, and one or two other characters dealing with one situation or another… usually these “situations” are pretty easily taken care of if you were a normal person, but Tanaka is lazy – very much so.

I really liked this show. Even when I wasn’t enjoying many other shows of the Spring 2016 season, this one was one I usually got happiness out of, if not a laugh or two per episode as well. I wasn’t rolling on the floor laughing, though, as this show is more about the light humor. Tanaka-kun didn’t really have a bad episode. It had episodes that I certainly enjoyed more than others, and that were funnier or had better story ideas, especially the first few episodes, but I still enjoyed nearly every moment of this show.

Tanaka-kun wasn’t afraid to have moments of downtime and to take pauses, to reinforce that feeling of relaxation and laziness throughout the entire series. It worked pretty well for the comedic timing of this series too. I especially appreciated the start of each episode, as they focused on a single small gag or joke, before the show’s title appeared and the theme music got going; some of those were really funny. For me, that opening gag set up how good that episode was going to be.

Tanaka’s thought process and the way he views the world differs so much from many of us simply due to his listless nature, and it generally tends to be a good source of comedy. That being said, I do feel perhaps there were some small “gimmicks” (in lack of a better term) that Tanaka did later on in the show – purportedly, to further his laziness – that I didn’t think were really necessary, but I guess you can only go so far without needing to throw in something fresh.

Ohta also tends to be a source of great amusement throughout the anime, mainly because of his personality, and the way that he interacts with Tanaka. Without a doubt, these two are my most favorite characters in the series (which is a good thing to say as they’re the ones we see the most).

However, the other characters, while still enjoyable, are not on the same level. Miyano is actually also pretty fun to see – almost on the same level as Ohta for me – but after the first few episodes, she begins to appear less and less. Shiraishi doesn’t get quite enough development for me to really get too much enjoyment out of her, although I still liked her. The blue-haired and red-haired guy friends of Ohta’s barely make an appearance in this series, which disappoints me, because I would’ve liked to see more of them. I don’t even remember their names!

The two characters I liked the least, though, were Echizen and Tanaka’s sister. In both their cases, they mainly remain archetypal, even though I feel Tanaka-kun would be a good show to play these types a bit more ironically. Echizen has a few interesting moments to her, and in the beginning, the series even shows Miyano confessing her feelings to Echizen. However, after this, Echizen goes on to mainly play a tsundere, towards both Ohta and Tanaka; it really disappoints me as I would’ve liked to see Echizen and Miyano actually continue together as a canon relationship. Tanaka’s sister is the jealous sibling, wanting Tanaka’s affections all for herself. I’m not really disgusted by her, but more bored; there’s nothing about her that I really find interesting, and I wish there was.

Despite all that though, I did have a lot of fun with this show, like I’ve said multiple times. Even if I didn’t enjoy Echizen or Tanaka’s sister all that much, I still enjoyed every single one of these characters here, and their personalities shone through their actions. The slow pacing and light humor of this show made it one of my more favorites in recent time.

The Atmosphere

The characters in this series are relatively simply-designed, compared to what I feel we generally see in anime of recent. It works pretty well for the series, and even with their designs, Tanaka-kun makes sure each of its characters’ designs are memorable. There’s a recurring character that first appears in episode 9, and when she returns in a later episode, I was able to recognize her with relative ease, despite her wearing a very different outfit.

The animation for the series is also surprisingly pretty good too. There’s not really much need for fast, fluid motion here, as this show primarily keeps a pretty slow pace, but the few moments where it’s a bit more action-y, I don’t feel disappointed. The standard of quality would definitely be higher if this were a combat-heavy, action show, but for a slice-of-life, it is definitely above the bar.

The thing I really want to talk about, though, is the background designs. The high school that these characters spend so much of their time in is freaking beautiful. I’d pause the episodes during wide shots, just so I could look at the designs of the high school’s interior. High-school-me would be so jealous if he had seen this high school back at that time. Throughout the entire series, the backgrounds tend to be these soft, light colors, which are not uncommon in a slice-of-life. Where I wouldn’t generally comment on the color and texture scheme used in a slice-of-life show, something done here makes it feel just a bit different, and fits well for this series, I think. None of the colors are super bright or in your face. There is a dip in quality after the first few episodes, but it really isn’t that noticeable unless you’re really looking for it, I think. Overall, the background designs of this show is one of my most favorite things about it.

The background music tends to rely on piano, woodwinds (particularly flute), and a few other instruments (like… accordion, I think it is?) to provide the friendly and cheerful nature to back the show. I can’t really say I’ve ever really encountered a slice-of-life with a soundtrack I’ve really wanted to own, and this show isn’t quite that different. The show’s music is nice (if not maybe a bit safe), but it’s not anything worth listening to its own. The show also tends to have its moments where there just isn’t any music at all, and I do appreciate a show that can have these silent moments so that the dialogue and visuals can shine on their own.

The opening theme has this mellow, relaxed feel to it, which of course fits the show very well. The opening animation, while not anything particularly special or all that noteworthy, is also rather nice. I definitely enjoyed the ending theme, Bon Bon, as well, though, but I do have a penchant for the more upbeat-sounding songs like that one. The ending animation was also rather cool, although it also featured a decent amount of still frames. Overall, though, I feel it isn’t that common for me to enjoy not only both opening and ending songs, but also the opening and ending animations for a series. However, Tanaka-kun is one of those exceptions.

The voices of Tanaka and Ohta are pretty much on point. Kensho Ono just sells the part of Tanaka, and Yoshimasa Hosoya’s portrayal of Ohta also works well for his intimidating size but kind nature. In fact, I don’t think I really have all that many complaints, if any, about the voices in this series. If I had to be pushed to say some critique, I’d point to the voices of the two guy-friends-of-Ohta, but we didn’t really get to see enough of them to really know what the characters are like.

Final Remarks / TL;DR

Tanaka-kun is Always Listless is a relaxing, sunny anime that’s fun to sit down and enjoy, when you want some time to relax, and get a couple smiles and laughs. The two main characters, and Miyano, are super fun to watch, even when some of the others may not be on that same level of enjoyment. The impressive background designs, and nice opening and ending themes all add up to a pretty nice viewing experience.

As tends to be the case of slice-of-life shows, there’s those that love them, and those that hate them. While this isn’t squarely just playing to the genre it’s in, I don’t feel Tanaka-kun is going to really grab those that generally avoid slice-of-life shows. If you’re okay with something relaxed and simple, without a big drama or plot, you’ll be in for a treat here though.

Rating: Great
Recommendation: Watch It
+++ amazing high school design, Tanaka and Ohta, opening and ending themes/animations
— Echizen and Tanaka’s sister, blue-haired/red-haired guys should’ve gotten more screen time, Miyano’s confession to Echizen didn’t go anywhere

About my life and reviews

Hey there!

So I said over Twitter that I would be posting two reviews yesterday, because I couldn’t do one last Friday, and because I was late with the one for the Friday before.

Obviously, that didn’t happen.

I could go on and on with my excuses (and I will in just a few moments), but I know that when it comes to being punctual with these things, I don’t really much have anyone or anything to blame but myself. Honestly, I’ve had a pretty long history of being bad with time management, so this is just another example to put there (specifically, example 15,499).

So, I will be posting one of the two reviews tonight, probably within a few minutes of this post being put up, and then I’ll be trying really hard to make sure I have reviews for every Friday afterwards. I will try to get the second of the two reviews up next Tuesday (as the review for this Friday will be something different), but, well, we’ll see what happens with that.

Anyway, so some of the reasons why it didn’t happen:

  1. I started a new job in real life. I actually started it about half a month ago, but the end of June marked the end of training… so the training wheels came off and my employer let go of me (figuratively) to see if I’d be able to balance on my own. Not unlike my actual experiences trying to learn how to ride a bike, it didn’t go too well. It’s not a difficult job, but it has a lot of tasks, and altogether, it’s adds up to being a pretty time-consuming thing. And time, as we know, is not something I have the best grasp of. So that’s been difficult to deal with, and schedule around.
  2. I planned to spend the Independence Day weekend (the United States’s Independence Day, that is) finishing the show that I was doing yesterday’s second review on. However, I had less time than I expected/planned to be able to accomplish that. So that didn’t really get done. (It also bled over into the volunteer work I’m doing for the Skip Beat release here in the United States… luckily, things still seem to be okay on that front.)
  3. Honestly, I’m just a bit out of the swing of things, when it comes to writing reviews. Both of the two reviews for yesterday, and the Space Patrol Luluco one before it, were for shows that only very-recently finished airing. All of my other reviews posted so far (excepting the Tatami Galaxy one, which was finished only hours before posting), are all over two months old. This means, up until I wrote that Tatami Galaxy review, I haven’t been writing anything for two months. Like most other skills, writing is something that needs constant practice, and by taking those two months off from it, I’ve become a bit rusty. I think I still write quality work today, but it’s just not coming as quickly as it used to. I used to be able to finish a single review in a night, if even, but Space Patrol Luluco took about 8-ish hours altogether to write. Hopefully as I keep going with this, I can start to get quicker with it again, but it’s been yet another wrench in this whole process.

To be honest, though, this review site is catering to an audience of maybe about 7 readers right now (and even that may be an optimistic number). Frankly, I’m not too concerned about being too late with these reviews, because almost no one in the entire world would even know. Not to, of course, belittle the people who I see pop up on a lot of my reviews – I appreciate you a lot – but it’s an obvious statement to make when I say I’m still in the little-leagues here.

Hopefully, though, if I continue to be more consistent, and maybe even get some of my other ideas out of my head and into existence on this website, we’ll start to see things go somewhere.

Finally, one last thing: I originally made this site and the related social media accounts to do the whole “person-who-hides-own-identity” thing; so far, there’s very little on this site to trace what’s being posted here to an actual person. It’s something we see people like HowToBasic or Ask A Korean do, and I thought it’d be cool to do something similar. However, the more and more I think about it, the less and less I’m liking the idea. So, at some point relatively soon, I plan to actually reveal who I am, and connect this site back to my own identity. I’ll still continue with the AnimeBird Twitter and other accounts I have, but I’m not gonna be making “AnimeBird” be some anonymous person anymore. It’s not that fun.

Anyway, if you read this far, thanks for letting me get all this off my chest. I expect this site to basically be just about anime and nothing else, so I don’t want to continue posting personal things here, but I felt this is stuff that was worth mentioning, given what’s been going on.

Until next time!