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My anime reviews

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About Me:

 

I can honestly say that my first experience with anime was Sailor Moon, back when it aired just before school when I was in something like 6th or 7th grade or so. Since I've pretty much always been a bit of a perv, even at this relatively young age I was pretty much only into this series for the fan service, even if I didn't know that was what it was called. Plus it came on right before Highlander: The Animated Series. Needless to say, my tastes have changed, and I'm, well, more grown up now than I was at the time, so I doubt I'd ever watch Sailor Moon again. Mostly I just like to make fun of it now.

 

The first anime I really got into as an adult was Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, and it's a testament to its quality that I was hooked despite not having any clue as to what the hell was going on plot-wise. This was as it was aired on Adult Swim, so thankfully they repeated the show and I was able to watch the whole thing from start to finish. Also airing on Adult Swim was Cowboy Bebop, and while I wasn't as hooked as GitS, I usually watched if it was on. A couple summers ago I actually bought the series and finally watched all of it, and it remains one of my favorites.

 

Anyway, long story short, I have some friends here at college who introduced me to the local anime club and also to some anime they figured I might like. I've also looked around online and put together a list of anime I decided I wanted to watch, and that's pretty much what all these reviews are going to be. Keep in mind, though, that I haven't started writing reviews until this summer. They tend to vary in length, and there are some good shows I'd like to go back and do a bit more justice to, but that's pretty much a project for the future (like so many others I'd like to do). I'd also like to do some things with screencaps, but same story. Same thing with some of the series I've watched and are actually on my recommendations list: I just don't feel I have the time right now. Actually the reviews I'm posting are a bit old, so while it might seem like I'm being really prolific, I'm just going through a long list I already have, sorry.

 

My Recommendations:

 

These are shows I especially liked for whatever reason. Some are good sci-fis, some are funny, some are over-the-top action "man-ime", or well, whatever. The only bad thing is that I haven't written reviews for all of these yet, so you won't be able to see why I liked them so much for a while, I can only say that they were good and that I would recommend them. I can also say that I will update this list as I see something that I think deserves to go on it.

I will post links to the reviews I do have as I actually manage to write and post them.

 

 

The Index

 

As for the reviews themselves, here are the reviews I've written so far in the order I intend to post them in:

Anyway, how about I start posting reviews?

Edited by Hicks

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A Wind Named Amnesia

(1990 movie)

Of the post-apocalyptic variety, this movie tries to ask questions, but in the end only rhetorically.

Basically humanity has reverted to something like cavemen, having lost its civilization along with its memories, which all disappeared on day thanks to a mysterious wind that swept over the entire planet. Fortunately, all the neat toys the military had been playing around with were left behind, one of which was a convenient teaching tool that allowed the main character to relearn how to be human, if not his own actual past. He's taken on the impossible task of restoring humanity to its former self, but really all he can do is drive around in a jeep and help a few people as he comes across them. Along the way he meets a strange woman who also seems to be a normal, civilized human, except for the fact that she seems to know an awful lot about what's going on in any given situation.

In a way this almost would have done better as a series, but it probably wouldn't have been a very good series either. I found it just interesting enough to keep watching, though amusement with the Japanese interpretation of the United States (the movie took place entirely there) helped keep me watching, too. In the end it really didn't pay off. As I'd suspected early on due to some really obvious foreshadowing, the mysterious woman was in fact an alien, and the wind was caused by these aliens, who took it upon themselves to punish humanity or something like that. I never really understood the reasons, but the message in the end was the standard issue "humanity is growing too fast and too out of harmony with Earth" variety. So really there was nothing special about this movie. The main character didn't even act upset at all at this revelation, and instead had some good-bye sex with the alien chick before she left him in the ruins of his civilization, neither of them really having accomplished anything toward the goal stated in the beginning of the movie, which earns it a 2/10.

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Ah! (or Oh) My Goddess!

(50 episode series)

Yeah, I know there are movies and other versions to go along with this series, but really I'm a little embarrassed that I watched this series in full as it is. It was actually one of the first when I started watching everything basically alphabetically on my huge "to watch" list, and for some reason, I actually did watch this angst-fest beginning to end. On the other hand, if I hadn't, I actually would have missed a few interesting stories.

What I'm referring to has more to do with stories involving the Motor Club within the series that the main character, Keiichi, was involved in. One of them was actually a ghost story, and it's actually my favorite of the stories I found somewhat interesting. It actually managed to tug on what's left of my heart strings a little, mainly because it involved a sick young woman who died before someone could fulfill a promise to her, which in this case was just something as simple as a motorcycle ride. So basically she ended up haunting the property she died at until someone else could come along, fix the now classic motorcycle and give her a ride around the nearby lake. I also have to admit that I liked how the writers pointed out that love comes in many forms, even in the form of someone taking care of their old cars/electronics/etc.

Belldandy, the title goddess, really was too sweet that way. And really she was just too impossibly sweet. A "harem" anime, we got to meet her sisters too, but while they were anything but sweet, I wouldn't call them all that interesting either. That could be because I found most of this series either boring or really frustrating. The two main characters are basically living together as a couple from the very beginning, but the male lead was horribly immature and the female lead wasn't much better. It was completely obvious that the two of them cared a great deal for each other, and yet the vast majority of what happened revolved around the other one trying to show their love to the other or still trying to determine if the other loves them, no matter how many times they show or outright say that they do to each other. No, really, right up to the last episode.

I guess if you like angst (I'm looking at you TnT 'shippers – you know who you are), this might actually be the thing for you. Otherwise, not much to see here, and if you were only interested in the stories I was talking about being interested in, I'd be happy to look up the episodes for you and list them. It's for those that I'm even bothering to throw this series any kind of a bone, scoring it 1/10.

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Akira

(1988 movie, new dub)

So this is the famous movie that is credited with making anime cool here in the US? Well, it's not bad, but it's not really as awesome as I was hoping it would be. I'm not even sure what the point was supposed to be, aside from the standard "science gone wrong". The movie itself is set in the future, after a nuclear WWIII that apparently started with an explosion going off in Tokyo. Well Neo-Tokyo has been built in the crater, with the old part of the city surrounding it pretty much in ruins. It's easy to see why this movie is classed as cyber-punk, which can pretty much be summed up as "high tech, low life".

The main characters themselves aren't exactly good guys, most of them belonging to a motorcycle gang which regularly goes out and battles another motorcycle gang called The Clowns. That is, all until a fateful meeting with a little kid that looks like he has that freakish rapid-aging disease. Turns out the kid is special, and not in a back of the short bus way, as he uses some kind of a mind force-field to keep from getting run over by Tetsuo, basically the secondary main character of the film. Why the freakishly old kid didn't use his mind force field earlier to protect himself and the communist revolutionary who rescued him from the secret military lab he was being kept at is never really made clear, or addressed even.

Oh, yeah, Japan is apparently in the throes of a recession which has resulted in massive civil unrest and a practically fascist police state to deal with it. Naturally where there are fascists, there are communists to fight them ... well, they never really identify as communists, but let's just say I had the feeling. In any case, the movie never really delves into any of this all that deeply, instead focusing on the main storyline of Kaneda, the film's main character, and his exploits in trying to find and rescue his friend Tetsuo from the military (with a little commie tail-chasing on the side). It seems Tetsuo is suffering some rather odd side-effects from the mind force field, which is why the military and its scientists have taken an interest in him. It seems he remind them of another really powerful psychic kid they experimented on named Akira, who has become a messianic figure to a large portion of the anarchist types who make up most of the mobs seen in the movie being oppressed by the police.

This brings up one of the secondary characters, a JSDF Lieutenant Colonel. He's hard to put a finger on, mostly because at times he's a complete bastard, and at other times the movie basically makes him out to be justified for being a complete bastard, who occasionally has a heart. He's the one in charge of the military's research into these telekinetic kids, and it's more than hinted at that Akira caused what appeared to be a nuclear detonation at the beginning of the film. Naturally, the colonel doesn't want this to happen again, and he's determined to kill Tetsuo should he get out of hand, which is naturally exactly what happens.

Akira is an okay film, and is kind of cool. There is a lot of awesomeness, especially as Tetsuo grows out of control, but it isn't really an awesome movie. The storyline is at times hard to follow, and there's a connection between some government officials and the communist revolutionaries that is never really explained, and really has nothing at all to do with the main plot as far as I could tell. That being said, this movie is still worth a watch, and scores a 7/10.

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Area 88

(12 episode series)

I tried to get into this series, but there really wasn't much there for me aside from cool warplanes and cool air-to-air combat.

It takes place in a generic middle-east country which is undergoing a civil war, with the government having hired on a mercenary force of combat pilots to aid their side against the rebels. The concept of mercenary jet fighter pilots never really makes much sense to me, and what makes even less sense is that the mercenary force itself is like the French Foreign Legion of old, which kidnapped people and pressed them into service. Well, technically everyone signs up for a stint of service, but they're still treated like slaves in the sense that they can't leave the super-secret base they are stationed at unless they serve their full contractual stint, or they buy their way out of it with the money they earn from their kills.

While the series' main character is in fact a reporter who is there for reasons not made entirely clear until later, the character being focused on is a blonde-haired Japanese pilot who flies an F-5. He's your basic moody type yearning for home and the one he left behind. Considering he got screwed over by his friend and shanghaied into service that would normally make him pretty sympathetic as a character, but unfortunately this is ruined by the aforementioned moodiness, which fails completely at making him mysterious or even really interesting for that matter. Ironically the reporter/photographer is more interesting as he develops from the typical snooty press type into someone who's sympathetic towards the pilots at this base. He ends up having second thoughts about his job, and actually ends up quitting it, which makes it that much worse that he gets the tar beat out of him by the pilots and is almost killed by them when they find out what he was originally sent there to do in typical kill the messenger style.

Well, fear not, all turns out "right" in the end as far as the main pilot's girl deciding to not marry the douche that betrayed him and had him shanghaied, and the fact he's completely forgiven for trying to run, but he still has to serve out his time and do exactly what he's been lamenting he hates doing by shooting down and killing other human beings, which is what's made him such a moody bastard. I guess if you like the eye candy, this series might be worth the time to watch, but there isn't much of a story that's worth watching. 4/10.

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hey dude, have you seen Death Note or Code Geass?

I've seen a few episodes, or parts of episodes of each as they aired on Adult Swim. I also saw the first live action Death Note movie. I had some fun riffing the movie during anime club, but I can't say that either show really interested me all that much. One of my friends talked me into watching Code Geass recently, and I've arranged to see the first season of it, but mostly that has to do with pervy reasons involving a certain table I've heard about. :nosebleed:

you should review one of those and add some pictures along with the titles.

just a suggestion.

I'd love to add pictues, if nothing else because I could probably make things a little more entertaining, but I'm a bit strapped for time I'm afraid.

Anyway, next up:

Review moved for cataloging purposes

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Armitage III

(4 episode OVA)

This OVA is mostly good. It's hard to put it any other way, because while it has its interesting points, there are also a lot of clichés which tend to annoy me.

Taking place on Mars, which has been terraformed successfully at some point in the future, the main plot focuses on the murder of several people who turn out to in fact be robots. While human-like robots are quite commonplace and actually the source of contention on Mars over labor rights, these robots are special because they are so human-like in personality as well as appearance, so much so that if they hadn't been killed, no one would have known any differently. In fact, it's at first expected that people have been replaced by the robots, since most of them have been famous musicians, artists, writers and the like. Of course the only one to care that robots are being killed is Officer Naomi Armitage, the fan servicy partner of the real main character, Ross Syllibus, who is actually a recent transfer. The somewhat annoying part is that she only feels that way because as it turns out, she's actually one of them.

Like pretty much every sci-fi to feature androids, this OVA somewhat awkwardly deals with the question of if artificial life can really be considered that much different from humans themselves, especially since they look and act human (and most of them happen to be attractive women).

That being said, Naomi herself is probably the most annoying aspect of the show, since in the beginning she tends to behave inappropriately, like gushing over how attractive her new male partner is while he's hunched over what they both initially think is a human murder victim, and later on she basically goes off on her own, abandoning her partner, even though it's clear by this point that Ross sympathizes and supports her. In fact they end up falling in love and going on the run together by the end of the show. I guess having her go off on her own was supposed to be dramatic, but it ended up just being annoying, at least to me.

Overall this is a pretty good show, interesting to watch, and with some amusing reminders of when it was made. I would recommend this anime, though I don't think I can score it any higher than 7/10.

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Armitage III: Poly-Matrix

(2000 movie)

This is a compilation movie made from the original OVA. Most of it is exactly the same, though some cuts were made to save time, and some bits were added to help make things make a little more sense, which it mostly succeeds at. It also features Kiefer "Jack Bower" Sutherland as the voice of the main character, Ross Syllibus, and Elizabeth Berkley as the voice of the title character, Naomi Armitage.

While this isn't as bad as some other compilation movies I've seen, most of its strengths come from the additional scenes which would have actually added more to the OVA. That being said, I don't really feel they make up for the storylines that were cut, and I still prefer the original OVA. It's not horrible, but not really worth the watch unless you want to see the additional scenes I'm referring to, and only after you've seen the OVA. 5/10.

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Armitage: Duel Matrix

(2002 movie)

A direct sequel to the OVA or the compilation movie depending on how you look at it, it also features some celebrity voice talent, including none other than Jar-Jar Binks. And no, I'm not kidding.

Just as with the first movie, the plot deals with androids and the people who made them. In this case the androids look like Armitage and the people who made them all end up being murdered as part of the same type of conspiracy that took place in the OVA. The difference is, this movie takes place on Earth, where Naomi and Ross, now her husband, have been hiding out with their daughter. Yeah, that's right, and android somehow had a kid, but then the reproductive capabilities of the new "type III" androids that Naomi is an example of is what caused the conspiracy and systematic killing of those androids in the OVA. The main difference from the OVA is that Naomi is actually mostly the main character of the movie.

The conspiracy manages to separate Armitage from her husband, who ends up on Mars. The two of them both work to solve it, which results in plenty of action and drama, especially when to android assassins who look like Armitage are activated and sent after the family. Armitage then has to deal with her daughter seeing her as the same kind of monster as the assassins for a while, which I guess is technically true except for the whole laughing cruelly and trying to kill them part.

Jar-Jar turns up to lend an unexpected hand after Armitage gets her ass handed to her a couple times, and while initially his motives are somewhat suspect, he ends up being a good guy of sorts and makes it possible for Armitage and her family to defeat the assassins and escape back to Mars.

I'd say the movie is at least as watchable as the original OVA, and I'd give it the same grade of 7/10.

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Yeah, I know this next one isn't technically anime, but it was influenced by it, so that's close enough for me. ;)

Avatar: The Last Airbender

(61 episode series)

This series was surprisingly good, considering the age group it was aimed at. While early on it was especially obvious that this show was meant more for children than adults, it still managed to have a complex plot that featured an epic journey and a battle between good and evil that might be compared in some ways to the original Star Wars trilogy. It even features a reluctant hero, Aang, who has a destiny but doesn't want anything to do with it.

Set in an alternate world, there are a select group of humans capable of exerting a kind of telekinetic control over the 4 ancient Greek elements: earth, air, fire and water. Most of them only have control over one element depending on which nation they belong to, and each nation in turn is named after the element its people can bend. The only exception is the Avatar, who can bend each element and is reincarnated as a member of each nation in turn every time he or she dies. The Avatar's function is to keep the balance and peace between the 4 nations. As it turns out, Aang, the most recent Avatar and a member of the Air Nomads, was frozen during a storm a century before the series takes place and as a result, the Fire Nation has successfully conquered most of the world.

Despite its rather mature story content (such as genocide), the series initially doesn't deal too much with it, focusing instead on immature humor that is obviously aimed at younger viewers. I found this rather annoying, to the point that I almost gave up on the series fairly early on, but fortunately the series matured a little to something one might expect to be aimed at the teenaged crowd.

While the entire point of the series is that Aang has to eventually fight the evil Fire Lord who is currently leading the Fire Nation in its war against the rest of the world, most of the series actually deals with him learning how to bend each element (despite having access to the memories of the previous Avatars), as well as agonizing over his past actions and that his destiny may force him to kill despite being very much against it. He's also physically a child, so while he's more mature than any child his age would be, he still wants to be just a child and have fun, but fate keeps robbing him of this. He meets a lot of people and makes many friends in his search for teachers to help train him to bend each element, including in the Fire Nation itself. It was actually quite refreshing to have the "bad guy" nation shown to be as much a victim of its leadership as the nations which have been invaded by its armies, with sympathetic characters among them. Even the persistent villain who is obsessively trying to hunt Aang down throughout most of the series is shown in a sympathetic light at times.

While I really would have preferred that the series would have been aimed at an older demographic and lose a lot of the immature humor it had, it was still a pretty good series, and I would recommend that you watch it if you have the time. I'm also looking forward to the live-action movie and hoping that the story hasn't been completely ruined in adaptation to screen as so often happens with tv series being turned into movies. 9/10.

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Baccano!

(16 episode series)

This was a strange but very enjoyable series. It tells the story of a group of immortals and how their lives intersect during the 1920s and '30s... I think.

Set mostly in Depression era New York, the series tends to shift around between time periods and locations quite frequently. In fact it was at times hard to follow along, but the complex web of a story was interesting enough to make it worth it. There were gangsters, silly thieves, and a ship full of French immigrants involved, and most of the story revolves around an incident on an express train called The Flying Pussyfoot of all things. Yeah, I laughed at the name, too.

The characters themselves were very interesting, and while there wasn't a whole lot in terms of development, there also wasn't really any need for traditional character development. Even some of the villains turned out to be fun to watch, especially the rather insane one who wore white just so the blood of his victims would show up better. "Thank you, fuck you, the hero has arrived!" – He was definitely a magnificent bastard, and apparently one of the many immortals in this show.

There was a lot of bloody violence, a mystery, and even a little romance, with some of it being rather twisted. I really don't know how else to describe this show, other than being awesome in an over-the-top action way. About the only thing I feel the series could have done without was the framing story, which didn't really do much as far as the story went. Still, this series is well worth the watch, scoring a 9/10.

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Barefoot Gen

(1983 movie)

This movie was good in a documentary kind of way. That's basically all it is, narrator and all, detailing the events of the daily lives of one family as they struggled to survive both before and after the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima. It focuses on one boy in particular, who was based on an actual survivor. It tends to come off as a bit of a white guilt movie, mostly because it completely omits the politics of the war. In fact, the war is only brought up at all in the first part of the movie as the cause for food shortages and the hardships that the boy's family faces. Any other reason could probably be given for that aspect of it and the story would basically be exactly the same right up to the bombing. Of course, it could also be that the politics are omitted because they didn't much matter to the main protagonist, which was a child, and only wanted to focus on the plight of the civilians who were effected by this war. As I think about it, the later is probably more likely, with the former viewpoint I had mostly coming from my experience watching so many shows that express and anti-US sentiment.

In a lot of ways, this movie comes off as something for a younger crowd, though it deals with mature topics like the effects of radiation poisoning, mass body cremations, the death of the main character's father and younger brother from being burned alive in the collapsed remnants of their house, and the later death of his infant sister of starvation.

This movie is worth a watch, though it wasn't quite what I was expecting for a movie about Hiroshima. 6/10.

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^It's somewhat hectic, yeah. It likes to jump around a lot in the story, but I still like it.

Battle Angel Alita

(2 episode OVA)

This is a good, but strange and ultimately frustrating anime, frustrating because it's obvious that the story is supposed to continue and in the OVA it simply ends.

Set in a post-apocalyptic future, it seems that both artificial life and cybernetic life are commonplace, even if the slum city that the story is set in. The "Battle Angel", is actually dug out of a garbage heap, brought back to life and named Alita. The scientist who does this is actually from the futuristic and very exclusive city which floats above the slum city. Much like the Star Trek episode, "The Cloud Minders", the labors of the slum city's inhabitants are enjoyed by the inhabitants of the city above, and the slum basically only gets the trash from the city above.

Basically the story is a mystery, about Alita and her origins, as well as the city above. There's also a mystery in the slum city involving the murder of individuals for their organs. Alita becomes a bounty hunter in order to solve this mystery, as the slum city has no police force. Along the way she meets another cyborg and develops feelings for him, though it ends badly. In the end, she finds out who is actually participating in the murders, but not the real reasons why, and the floating city remains a mystery as well, remaining just a long term goal for her to reach. And then the OVA just ends.

Having read about this OVA in advance, I knew this would happen, because the OVA only covers about the first two issues of the manga (graphic novel) series it is based on. I would hope for this OVA to either be finished or remade, keeping as faithful to the source as possible. It's a pretty good OVA and worth a watch, but be aware that the ending leaves you wanting more, but there is no more, unfortunately. 9/10.

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Black Cat

(24 episode series)

This is one of those series that while somewhat serious, also has quite a bit of comedy mixed in with the drama. Overall, it is a fairly good mix of both, mainly as a drama with comedy relief. At times this is taken a bit far, however, mostly having to do with the main character's nickname, the title of this series (wearing a bell around his neck, drinking a lot of milk, etc).

The storyline is split between two main characters, a "sweeper" named Sven, and a trained assassin named Train. The series contrasts the two, with Sven being very laid back and down on his luck, and Train being a trained, ruthless, mostly emotionless killing machine. The series then slowly introduces the secondary characters, including Eve, who is literally an engineered weapon in the form of a pre-teen girl, and Saya, another somewhat more successful sweeper who gets Train to rethink his life through late night visits. Train and Saya do develop some romantic chemistry, but thanks to a somewhat odd love triangle with another male assassin named Creed, she is murdered. The resulting antagonism between Train and Creed is both disturbing and interesting, and it kept me watching.

Then there's the storyline with Eve. Sven saves her from the evil bastards that made her and intended to exploit her as a horrible weapon and teaches her how to be human. He basically adopts her as a kind of daughter, and after teaming up with Train, she tends to take what Sven taught her and attempts to teach the same lessons to Train. At times this can me interesting and/or humorous, but as I mentioned before, the connections she makes with Train being a cat tend to take it too far.

The series does kind of mislead, though, as the antagonism between Train and Creed, while taking up most of the series, ends quite a while before the series does. There's more betrayal to be had, and Train ends up saving the organization he was originally part of, even though they've basically been hunting him down and trying to kill both him and Eve, originally his target they assigned to him. The series also misleads in its message of not killing others by advocating alternative uses of firearms that quite frankly would probably still result in people getting killed. But TV shows and movies tend to be like that with firearms, I guess.

I'm still, in some ways, up in the air as to whether I really like this series or not. It has some good/interesting elements to it, but it also has some rather annoying clichés that would make me hesitate before recommending it to a few of my friends who might be expecting something else. Still, I think I feel safe giving this series a 7/10.

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Black Magic M-66

(single episode OVA)

Ah, more androids, and they aren't the focus of the story ... more or less. In any case, the story actually follows a sexy news reporter, Sybel, who reminds me a little of April from the old Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtles show I watched as a kid back in the late '80s and early '90s. She's arrogant, driven, temperamental, and has to constantly fight off the advances of her co-worker, who is something of a leach with aspirations of his own. Oh, and she's a hot brunette with short hair.

In what is basically a fish-out-of-water story, Sybel noses her way into something big and ends up being hunted by both the military and the android killing machines created by some crazy scientist type. Some mishap occurred in transporting the things, and they end up on the loose, somehow programmed to kill their creator's spoiled granddaughter, though only after they've ripped a grizzly bear and a couple of hikers to shreds, just to show us how dangerous and indiscriminate they are. Sybel, being the just caring enough person that she is, takes it upon herself to break free of military custody, during an attack by the killing machines no less, so she can personally save the scientist's granddaughter.

Thankfully this movie wasn't completely horribly clichéd, so the soldiers weren't all evil, even if they weren't real big on the freedom of the press, and actually catch on to the fact Sybel is trying to save the same person they are, and she basically ends up completely forgiven for nosing in on their big state secret. The end credits actually show us some mildly amusing snippets from her continued exploits, and let's just say that she doesn't change a bit.

Hmmm... How to put this? Well, this movie didn't suck. The plot was straightforward, there weren't any hugely annoying and obvious political messages to ruin things, and the main character was an interesting if not really what a viewer could really entirely sympathize with. I'd call her a chaotic neutral anti-hero ... maybe. Yeah, there were some clichés, and really not all of the movie makes sense, but it was still fun to watch. 7/10.

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Blassreiter

(24 episode series)

Set in a future Germany, this series both entertained and annoyed me, mostly because of the anti-US slant that turns up late in the series, and because of how annoying some of the characters could be, not to mention some of the clichés that reared their ugly heads.

In a problem that is entirely unique to Germany, human bodies have started coming back to life as these strange monsters that are really hard to kill, have devastating attacks, and apparently just appeared out of no where. Then, just as icing on the cake, most of the victims tend to come back to life as these monsters themselves, sort of like really angry and fast zombies that can blend with machinery to become even worse monsters. Their origin is finally explained, and isn't exactly a huge surprise thanks to the many hints dropped from the beginning of the series.

The story focuses mostly on one team of elite police, the Xenogenesis Assault Team, which actually reminds me a bit of FUNERAL from Argento Soma in the type of team members present. As it turns out, one of their number, Hermann, has a friend who is infected and becomes one of these monsters, but to an extent he can control it and he retains his humanity. This mostly has to do with the manner in which he was infected, which leads into what becomes the main plot of the series. At first, it seems like this Gerd guy is going to become something like a Batman figure in that while he continually fights the good fight against the monsters, only a few people (and later only his friend) stick up for him and most regard him as simply another monster.

Well, fooled me. As it turns out, that wasn't the case, and it only set things up for the main plotline, which is of mysterious figures from the past of yet another anti-hero character plotting to force their brand of evolution on humanity. We eventually learn the past of this anti-hero, Joseph, and through that the solution to the big mystery that's been dragged along since the beginning of the series. Then, like Argento Soma, there's a betrayal from within the team, but the difference is that here the betrayer never redeems themselves and most of the team dies, and the storyline shifts to follow formerly secondary characters accordingly.

Then towards the end, the US bullies the UN into letting it unleash nuclear armageddon on Germany in order to prevent the spread of the monsters to the rest of the world. Oh yeah, and the Knights Templar make an appearance and turn out to not be that much better, except for a few people who mostly all die saving the day.

At times this series grew quite tiresome, either from slow pacing or from the anti-US bullshit, but I guess overall I don’t regret watching it. It is another series that could have gotten to the point more quickly, but it's still okay. I'd say it's about 5/10.

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