Fate/stay night manga

February 22, 2009

Fate/stay night manga

After having watched the anime, played the game and then watched the anime again I guess it was rather inevitable for me to start reading the manga version of Fate/stay night at some time. Having finished the first two volumes so far I’d say that this instalment of the franchise is pretty alright, too. It certainly isn’t a whole new experience for people knowing the game version, but it might be quite interesting for the ones who only have seen the anime, because so far the according ‘flags’ for the second path (Unlimited Blade Works) were ‘triggered’ in the story, starting with Shirou using his first command spell to stop Saber’s attack on Rin. More I better won’t reveal for the sake of spoillessness.
Further on, the way the story is presented is interesting because the chain of events is told in a slightly different order here. The first volume is strictly told from Shirou’s point of view which means that Rin’s prologue isn’t featured in the beginning and every time Shirou losses consciousness no more about the further events is shown at that point, but is told to him later in retrospect at some time when he’s awake again. This concept is unfortunately dropped halfway in the second volume, but it’s quite enjoyable as long as it lasts.
The drawing quality is good and of course the character designs differ a bit from the anime and game designs, but stay in their core true to the previous versions. For example, Saber has a rounder face and which makes her looks a bit like a chibi version of herself in the first volume, but in exchange this medium is the first one that manages for me to display Kirei as creepy as he is intended be, thus all in all I’m alright with it.
Finishing line: If you liked the anime and want to know more about the story without having to buy a admittedly rather overpriced game or if you’re a huge fan of the whole Fate/stay night franchise this manga might be worth a try.


Minami-ke third season second best

February 10, 2009

Minami-ke Okaeri

So far Minami-ke Okaeri manages to entertain much better than the second season did. I guess the reintroduction of good characters from the first season, some jokes with a different theme than cross-dressing Makoto (that, while not exactly my type of humour, was in fact pretty funny while it wasn’t beaten to dead by too much repetition) and especially the absents of the fun-killing emo neighbour kid seem to do the trick quite well. I still miss the fluffy feeling of the first season and the drawing style lacks at times (sometimes I wonder if the animators have seen any real legs yet), but none the less it’s finally fun again to wait for and watch new Minami-ke episodes.


Sequel Season Part 2

January 24, 2009

Tetsuwan Birdy Decode 02

To my pleasant surprise there airs also a Tetsuwan Birdy Decode sequel this season, which now adds my watch-count of sequels up to four. Although the ending of the first season was a bit weak with drawing the amnesia-card at the end, thus choosing a rather easy and unsatisfactional exit-strategy, and albeit this seasons intro being just not the intro of the last season, I still think that this will be quite entertaining.

In other news I finally found at least two non-sequel series to watch this time. The first one ist BackRide, which looks, sounds and feels just great. Only the design of the RideBacks doesn’t appeal to me that much, they look a bit silly I’d say. But that is really the only (and pretty small) point I could complain about and only if I would be force to so.
The other series is Sora o Miageru Shoujo no Hitomi ni Utsuru Sekai. To tell the truth my only reason so far to watch this series is that it is produces by Kyoto Animation and I like what they’ve done in the past. From the first episode I’d say that this one has potential to become quite interesting, but on the other hand it has the same potential to become the opposite. Well, the next few episodes will tell…


Sequel Season

January 17, 2009


Of the new seasons animes I’m only watching sequels of former series so far, namely the ones of Minami-ke, Tower of Druaga and Natsume Yuujinchou. All three I enjoyed much at their air-time and I’m hopeful that their sequels won’t disappoint me neither.
The first two episodes of Minami-ke Okaeri were definitely better than (almost) everything Okawari accomplished, but it doesn’t emit the same feeling and atmosphere of the first season so far. None the less, being produced by the same people who made the first season they still look promising and I’m far from being in despair here. hopefully they have learned their lesson from the second season and try to tie in with the first season much better this time.
Sword of Uruk is only one episode old, but I like what I’ve seen in that episode. Jil and Fatina get along quite well now and their interaction is nice to watch. The main crux should be the handling of the reunion of Jil/Kaaya and Neeba/Fatina, thus it might take a while to see if this sequel will succeed.
Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou manages to follow its first season in every aspect, it’s like there wasn’t a break at all. Consequently both new episodes were great entertainment and I’m eager to watch more and more of this series.

So, to sum up my estimation of all three sequels together I’d say ‘Huge Success’. Now I’ll have to see if there are also some new series worth to watch out there.


Fate/stay night re-watched

January 3, 2009

After having finished the Fate/stay night game I took the time in the last few days to watch the anime version a second time and I’d say it’s pretty okay. I enjoyed it much more than the first time, although I knew from the start that much of the really interesting stuff won’t be featured. In fact, I think that this knowledge made the anime more enjoyable and interesting this time. Now I wasn’t in danger to be disappointed about all the missing things, but could appreciate the well done conversion of the static images of the game into a living (anime) world and pay attention to anything that differs from the Fate route of the game. And I think they did quite a good job in interspersing different hints from the other routes without giving away too much. At least I couldn’t conclude any important parts of the other routes in my first run, but now it was pretty easy to interpret and appreciate them. The extended part about Caster was interesting to watch, too. I guess the studio used some of the raw material Type-Moon had left from the not-realised forth route here.
So, in order to enjoy Fate/stay night the most I would suggest to watch the anime, then play the game and then watch the anime again. Might take a bit longer this way, but nobody said it’d be easy (alternatively it should help to be not expecting anything beyond the Fate route in the anime after having the game played first).

Next thing for me is to watch the Tsukihime anime again now. I expect a similar experience, maybe better because Tsukihime is in many aspects superior to Fate/stay night.  I just watched Fate first because I like it’s whole setting a bit more, it isn’t as gloomy and there is a bit more “happening” in the long run.

Also I’m still a big sucker for girls-with-swords.


Anime Afterglow apologises for any inconvenience, and wishes you the best of luck

December 31, 2008

“Remember when the platform was sliding into the firepit, and I was all “Goodbye!” and you were like “NO WAY” and then I was all “We pretended we were going to murder you, Happy New Year!“?

That was great.”


Clannad After Sidestories

December 28, 2008

During the first few episodes of Clannad After Story I became afraid that they would just check off all the minor characters sidestories that didn’t fit in the first season over the whole run of the second one, but with crossing the school graduation border with Tomoya the series goes where only a few other series have gone before. After this (story-wise) point of no return Tomoya has to face a new kind of reality and has to find a place in the world he lived so far, and by telling this in a realistic, comprehensible and especially interesting way this series reaches a whole new quality. Before I was always in some degree comparing Clannad with the other two Key/KyoAni productions Kanon and Air, but now this isn’t any longer sufficient, because the topics just don’t match anymore. Clannad just can’t be seen as a mere (more or less equal) “copy” of the other two series anymore. A very welcome development I’d say.