⚫ Oniichan no Koto… BD1 uncensored screencap comparisons here. Soul-peering penguin BEGONE!
⚫ New volumes of the ongoing Nanoha manga: Nanoha Force and Nanoha Vivid (Vivio’s spinoff) were released! Pictures of the covers and the epic manga-stack that Gamers made of their stock can be seen on the AkibaOS article here. This is an image of Toranoana’s special gift to purchasers… it’s incredible! So much sexy-nekomimi win! I thought I’d preordered them but I haven’t got an order confirmation from Ami Ami yet..
⚫ The store Sof Map is offering a special gift to purchasers of all of Kore wa Zombie Desu ka, and they released an image of it recently. Warning: Sera, Yuu and Tomonori naked embrace! Can you handle the win?
⚫ The weekly manga volume sales chart is out, and it makes the hug success of the Madoka pretty clear. This last week it sold over 44,000 copies, but the impressive thing is that this is it’s third week! In total it has sold 91, 223 copies, which puts it well above the standard performance of manga based on anime. To put it in perspective, the Macross F manga sold 21K copies for a volume, the Code Geass manga sold 26-20K copies for a volume, and the Gurren Lagann manga sold 25K copies for a volume. This is in the league of the Darker than Black manga (94K copies in 3 weeks) and getting towards the level of the Nanoha spinoff manga: Forces (101K in 4 weeks) and Vivid (112K in 4 weeks). However, given how much it sold in its 3rd week, it’s likely that Madoka go overtake these sales numbers.
⚫ The title of the new Lucky Star musical is らき☆すた≒おん≒すて (Raki☆Suta≒On≒Sute), which I’m guessing means Lucky Star On Stage! Also, it seems like there’ll be an all-night event for it. Hardcore. (source)
⚫ So it seems people were disappointed by the presentation quality of the Hatsune Miku concert that went down last night, Mikuba. This concert was this year’s sequel event to the concert that Sega handled last year, which bought Miku to life with a pretty sweet holograohic display. Disappointingly, 5pb’s efforts on Mikuapa didn’t summon that same visual impact. Instead, they just had her confined to a conventional screen display. Still, Miku fans were still pleased with the music it seems, which doesn’t surprise me at all! (source with pics)
⚫ The official twitter for Subaru/Gainax’s anime, Houkago no Pleiades, made several tweets about work on a new project for Pleiades! They posted a couple of pictures too. Apparently the seiyuu have already done some recording session. More details will come in a few days. I suspect it may be a drama CD, but either way it’s a sign that more anime is on the horizon! (source)
⚫ Nice 2channel-translation report on the recent Keion concert at Mangajet! LINK
⚫ The Keion TV-anime has broken a record by selling over 500,000 thousand Blu-rays in total! That’s pretty impressive, but don’t forget that it’s a 2-cour anime. So on a per-volume sales basis, there are certainly TV-anime with stronger BD sales, such as Bakemonogatari. source
⚫ Anime announcement: based on a light novel, Ben・Tou is an action-comedy story about a guy who gets stuck in a ‘supermarket survival battle’. I dunno, even if it sounds kinda dumb, it is very popular. It hit fifth in the 2010 light novel ranking. Funny that this news came out just as 2channel was talking about how light-novel anime announcements are dying off (the theory being that original is coming back into popularity, or that they’re running low on popular titles). Maybe the explosion of light-novel anime is slowing, but they’ll be around for a long time to come. source
⚫ The OP for next-season anime, Hidan no Aria will be done by May’n (the singing voice of Sheryl)! #1
⚫ The author of the Infinite Stratos light novel says he’s troubled by how to make Rin a cuter character. He says, although he likes Rin, she does give off a cute vibe at all, which he admits may be due to his lack of skill. He apologises to Rin fans. Of course, I wouldn’t take these comments too seriously. The blog entry has an up-beat tone, so I don’t think there’s too much angst behind it. This is just the latest and most official thing I’ve heard about Rin not being a very good character, so I think it’s about time I came out and threw in my support for her! I find her really cute already! Not on the level of Charles, obviously, but she’s cuter than England! source
⚫ Zero no Tsukaima ending at volume 22. It’s had a good run, and it’s nice to know it’s ending. I have to admit, I’m kind of curious about what note it’ll end up on in terms of the Louise/Saitou relationship. source
⚫ Although the Sisters arc is finished, the Railgun manga will be continuing on, and it will feature a new character designed by Haimura Kiyotaka (the Index novel illustrator)! Can’t wait for it! source
⚫ The new TV-anime for kids starring the seiyuu unit, LISP, Pretty Rythmn, will air at 10am every Saturday morning. source
⚫ Upcoming anime R-15 about an ero-novel student writer is officially set to air in Summer season! #1
⚫ Kannagi will be re-aired on Tokyo MX! Could this be a sign of more Kannagi coming our way, now that the author is back on her feet and doing the manga again? #1
##Once again, I didn’t get the chance to watch any anime today (sigh). Actually, I tell a lie; my day was brightened up somewhat with 1080p versions of the Sakura memorial specials (Cardcaptor Sakura), which I might do a brief post on after this. The first ‘true end’ OreImo episode came out today, which has got the net all fired up. I’m pretty excited to see that tomorrow! More Kuroneko, more Saori, and more Kirino – sounds like a recipe for fun!
Discussions on a possible Kannagi season 2 got me thinking .. about the infamous directory, Yamakan. So I added a controversial poll today! Follow your heart!
I’ve been holding out on watching this anime for only one reason: the version aired on TV was censored, even on the glorious station, AT-X. It’s not so much that I’m inherently opposed to this kind of censorship (if it helps sell more DVDs/BDs, then I don’t think we have the right to be angry over it), but just a feeling of, ‘why not just wait and get the show in all its spectacle’? Well I waited, and the spectacle is all I’d hoped – an almost constant stream of eye-candy, both in terms of the nipple-inclusive nudity and the sexy art style and animation. First, the fanservice! If you’re a fan of nipples in anime (and why wouldn’t you be?) then this is definitely an anime to check out – the toplessness rate is very high and the drawings are unabashedly sexy. I also like the fact that there’s a rage of breasts sizes included, unlike other erotic anime. We’ve got a Kugumiya Rie voiced loli character with a fetching flat chest, and a large cast of buxom girls to make her feel insensitive. But it’s not just the nudity, the fanservice also encompasses some nice costume fetishism as well. We’ve already seen a number of moe outfits show up: bloomers, maid outfit, schoolgirl clothes. The way these typical anime wears are fused with feudal Japanese clothing styles create costumes that are somehow cool, sexy and cute at the same time! Then there’s erotic themes like Hanzou’s sexual infatuation with her (also female) master, and the arousing way Juubee calls Yagyuu ‘oniichan’.
I’m not typically a fan of anime that lean too heavily on the erotic tones and don’t bother trying to squeeze in any other assets. Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Girls may be heavy on the fanservice, but it’s not overdone to the point where the characters are dulled to mindless/retarded ecchi drones, and it’s all rendered with a unique and polished ‘look’. That ‘look’ is defined by bold outer lines on the ‘cels’. grainy, stylised backgrounds and thematic blotches of ink that splatter the screen in action moments. That might sound a bit wanky, but when you experience each of these design choices together it works surprisingly well, and instantly sets it apart from other anime in this category. The actual animation quality is quite high – the action sequences are well-executed and quite exciting to watch. Tsutomu Miyazawa is the chief animation director, and does a good job. The art director, Junichi Higashi, has done pretty much everything, good or bad, so I don’t know how much of the unique look to attribute to his input. The director, KOBUN, on the other hand, is a bit of a mystery. KOBUN is an alias, under which no other works have been done. Their true identity is unconfirmed, but after doing some searching, the general consensus among Japanese fans is that KOBUN is Kobun Shizuno, which seems believable. KOBUN has made an impressive entrance into the realm of TV-anime direction and I hope to see more of his works.
The characters don’t stray too far from their gimmicks/cliches, but they’re still fun to watch. I don’t think anyone expected deep, realistic characters from this show, and frankly, an ecchi anime with characters who aren’t annoying as fuck already qualifies it for ‘rare gem’ status. The male lead is unintrusive without being pathetic, and the girls are both cute and strong-spirited. Kugimiya Rie’s character, Sanada Yukimura is especially fun as the proud and feisty loli, Tokugawa Sen (played by Kotobuki Minako) is a self-important girl with a soft dere core beneath her stubborn outer shell, and Hattori Hanzou is amusing as the easily-flustered maid with an almost slave-like relationship with her superior. Then there’s the bipolar lead character, Yagyuu Juubee, who has a deadly and barbaric warrior side and an endearing, naive maiden side. It reminds me of Elfen Lied in that respect. As you might have noticed, the girls are named after historical samurai figures, however there’s no real historical value to this anime. So far, Samurai Girls has been solid fun and deliciously ecchi!