Anime might be cool

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SpammyV
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Re: Anime might be cool

Postby SpammyV » Tue Feb 14, 2017 12:31 am

Luckily for you, like half the mobile suits in Zeta Gundam transform. Including the titular Zeta Gundam. And not just the frankly underwhelming "transformations" of Gundam SEEDF, all of which essentially amount to "I hunch over and pick my legs up." There's stuff all popping out and flipping around and people are turning into UFOs and having secret claws hidden in their legs.

Except then you praised the toys so somewhere, Yoshiyuki Tomino got momentarily outraged for a moment without knowing why.
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Retsam

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby Retsam » Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:44 am

Finished Hyouka. I had two episodes left, and by odd coincidence, the first one was a Valentine's Day episode.

As that last sentence hints, the show takes a pretty strong turn towards romance in the last couple episodes (though anyone whose surprised that they go that direction absolutely isn't qualified to watch a mystery show). Romance isn't really my thing, but even I found the last episode pretty cute, but overall it just cemented my disappointment with the second half of the show. I liked the "Encyclopedia Brown"-style of mundane, solvable mysteries, and there just weren't a ton of them in the second half.

But, despite being a bit disappointed by the mysteries, I can't say I didn't basically enjoy the second half. I can see why people who are more into slice-of-life or weapons-grade Moe would really love this show. And while the mysteries are a bit hit-and-miss... it's just such a rare thing for a show to consistently have actual fair, solvable mysteries, that I've really got to give it credit for having hits in the first place.
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Thomas

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby Thomas » Fri Feb 17, 2017 11:31 pm

Oh man, I thought Your Lie in April ended at episode 10. If it had done I think it would have been one of the truly great animes, because it would have been a show that knew to end too early.

Fairly explicit plot discussion ahead (sadly the show does not end on episode 10, so there are no spoilers for the end of the show)

The shows starts off with a bunch of the same old anime tropes. The protagonist is withdrawn, hiding from a Dark Past, unable to be coaxed by his oldest and most trustworthy best friend who won't admit to herself that she loves him. Until suddenly a Tsundere/Manic Pixie Dreamgirl shows up to force him out of his shell and to teach him to love life and forcing his female best friend to confront herself (also she's dating his male best friend).

So far so normal. Its mostly passable until it reaches the concert, which is amazing. Two pianists driven by their different journeys and feelings for the protagonist in his path, choose to reveal themselves to him on stage through their music, in really beautiful sequences.

And it all climaxes with the protagonist taking the stage, and going through his path of self-discovery through his music in front of everyone, failings exposed to the world. He has to face the scars of abuse from his dead mother and just as he looks about to fail he remembers the person he has to play for now and his fears go away and his music becomes expressive in a way that talks to the souls of his fellow pianists, closing their wounds. As he ends the crowd are too stunned to react but it doesn't matter, because hes only being playing for this one person...

The camera pulls up to the image of his mother, smiling for the first time.

Not the Tsundere love interest. Its the perfect ending. There are so many questions and plot threads unresolved that it doesn't even feel like an ending. Until you realise that's point, its never been about the cliche rubbish at the start, its not about playing for other people. The protagonist is playing for himself. It doesn't matter what happens to the love triangle, this is his resolution. It doesn't even matter if the mother would never have smiled like that, because its not about her either. He's chosen to leave the abuse behind and see her memory as he wants to see it - for himself.


...and then there's an episode 11. But that would have been good right?
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SpammyV
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Re: Anime might be cool

Postby SpammyV » Sat Feb 18, 2017 6:08 am

Out of curiousity, was the 11th episode actually a part of the original run, or was it added on as a bonus for the DVD release? Baccano!'s actual run was only for 13 episodes and those 13 episodes are good. The DVD release saw three extra episodes added on as a new arc at the end and it was terrible and I hated it.
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Thomas

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby Thomas » Sat Feb 18, 2017 8:46 am

Looking it up there's actually 22 episodes and it was based on an 11 volume manga. So it seems like this was never meant to be an ending. It clicking so well as an ending for me must have been a freak coincidence
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Thomas

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby Thomas » Sun Feb 19, 2017 6:15 pm

I love Your Lie in April. It's available on Netflix so I'd really recommend checking it out. It only really gets good when they starting taking part in competitions though, so you do have to push through the opening episodes.

It actually ended up being better that my imagined version above, quite a bit better even and I liked my imagined version. The thing is, the first 7-10 episodes make it look like Your Lie in April is only about the central love interest. After episode 10 it opens way up and you realise that the love interest is only part of it, part of the catalyst of appreciating everyone around you and treasuring every type of relationship and feeling to fill your life in colour - and other people's lives too.

It becomes about gifted musicians expressing themselves through music to build up the people listening to it by letting them into the musician's heart. It's fairly wonderful and ends up being so mature about loss.

The only thing that stops it from being a truly great show (and it's already good enough that it's going to stay in my head), is that sometimes I ended up appreciating the show for what it wanted to do more than what it was doing. It does succumb to the anime problem of having characters describe what a scene means at the same time as showing it. But it still absolutely shows a lot, it does manage to pay-off it's boast to reveal people through their music.

As a little sidenote, I was wondering why a show about classical musicians would have such a (nice but) simple score. It's because if the score was more complicated, it would get confused with the in-universe performances!

I could have done with the ending being 15 minutes shorter, they're not dealing with Homura. But maybe that's because Arrival is still in my head and I'm craving endings that leave me hanging a little! So yeah, lovely experience in the end. Much better for me than playing the Walking Dead which is the sort of thing I'm normally drawn to when my moods low!
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Re: Anime might be cool

Postby SpammyV » Wed Mar 01, 2017 1:28 am

So I finally started ZZ (Double Zeta) Gundam. I can simultaneously see why fans got so put off by it back in the day, and also enjoy the show. ZZ started airing the week after Zeta finished airing, meaning that fans went from the serious, bittersweet finale of Zeta where the good guys only win through suffering and sacrifice into a comedy show that almost seems like a parody of Universal Century Gundam plots. Imagine a cut of the Star Wars movies where they go from Luke missing a hand and crawling onto the Millennium Falcon to goofy Ewok shenanigans. In the same movie.

But... perhaps it's the perspective of watching this decades later and being aware of how pretty much every Gundam plot goes, but the comedy in ZZ is sort of working for me. Taking the credibility out of Bright & Co. maybe not so great, but the sort-of parodying of Gundam plots is fun. And if nothing else there's one joke that redeems the comedy half of the show in my eyes.

Mashymere pulls out his rose and starts reminiscing about Haman giving him the rose, which I'm pretty sure only happened in his memories and fanfic. I'm going to assume that his flashback happened in realtime, meaning he stood there for two or three minutes holding a rose up and looking at it before his subordinate finally speaks up. "How the hell is that rose still alive, anyway?" "It's varnished!" And then Mashymere gets into his mobile suit even though it's not finished and when the mechanic asks for thirty minutes to put the cockpit hatch on Mashymere goes "Nonsense, I prefer it to be well ventilated!" It turns out they weren't in space during that scene but I really expected them to be.
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The Rocketeer

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby The Rocketeer » Wed Mar 01, 2017 3:03 am

I felt so sorry for Yazan Gable in the opening of ZZ. Zeta established him as a pilot whose ability greatly outstripped his position, not necessarily a villain but definitely not a nice guy, ruthless and competent enough to go toe-to-toe with almost anyone and relish the challenge.

Then ZZ starts. Oh, Yazan, hang in there, you ol' debil.

I hope you haven't spoiled yourself too much on ZZ. Actually, looking back, I hope I didn't spoil it too much. I have complicated feelings about it, but I do think it works a lot better if you don't know what's coming.
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Re: Anime might be cool

Postby SpammyV » Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:54 am

You really do not have to worry about spoiling me on Gundam. Watching LPs of Super Robot Wars games (crossovers which always feature at least one Gundam series, and usually the whole of the extant UC at a time) and especially watching G Generation Genesis (A game that's all "Hey relive the big moments from every UC show") have given me a summary knowledge of pretty much every UC show. But while I may not be surprised, knowing the broad strokes of what happens in ZZ and the show's reputation make me more want to watch it.

Also I think Yazan's craziness got turned up in the movie version. In Zeta he's clearly nuts but not that nuts. No one you would ever promote to having any real authority. But not quite "I'M GONNA VIOLATE YOU!"

Tomino chuckles good naturedly to himself as he pencils in a funny visual gag to tell the animators. Suddenly the phone rings, and when he answers it he's congratulated for having Char's Counterattack greenlit for production. He responds graciously, hangs up the phone, crosses out the joke, and writes "Colony drop."
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Thomas

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby Thomas » Sun Mar 12, 2017 9:55 pm

It was a lot easier to believe Kill la kill was a send up of anime BS when it was using anime BS for a couple of episodes. Less so for 25.
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4th Dimension

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby 4th Dimension » Sun Mar 12, 2017 10:44 pm

Which particular anime bullshit are you referring to?
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Thomas

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby Thomas » Mon Mar 13, 2017 6:42 am

Uber fan service, plots being made up on the fly, constantly moving the goalposts, weirdness for weirdness' sake, and fights which are 'I'm losing. Now I feel bad so my power is stronger!'

I appreciated its loose ultra weird style but I had hoped it would take its winnings before it got too much too consistent.
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4th Dimension

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby 4th Dimension » Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:14 am

Yeah, I'm never fond of fan service and this one did have loads of it starting with the character design. On the other hand they did work into the story the explanation on why the costumes are so skimpy and such and being nude is part of the plot especially since the ultimate enemy are clothes. Then again they could have gone with something else as an enemy.

So I endured that and other annoying things about it, for the over the top ridiculous action on which it did deliver.

What do you mean with "moving the goalposts"?
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Thomas

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby Thomas » Mon Mar 13, 2017 8:08 am

Like they started off with a set-up of 'defeat these 4 people and then the last one' and then next episode it was 'plus a bunch of low tier people' and the episode after that was 'plus a bunch of even lower tier people' and then it was 'actually forget about those even lower tier people'.

Its a silly thing to be frustrated with :p And I only got 9 episodes in, so maybe it feels more like a narrative soon afterwards
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4th Dimension

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby 4th Dimension » Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:11 pm

To be fair I watched it in pretty much one or two sittings so any pacing complaints were aved over with that, but the plot doesn't really start until like Satsuki sets out to take over other schools. Up to that point it was all about Ryko getting better and stronger, trying to learn what is really going on and high octane action.
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SpammyV
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Re: Anime might be cool

Postby SpammyV » Tue Mar 14, 2017 3:40 am

Another weekend gone by, another block of ZZ Gundam watched.

I wonder how much they intended for Glemy's introduction to make him the Katz of Neo Zeon. "Oh boy I'm new to all this but I get to pilot a mobile suit and fight in space! This is the best! Oh my god I met a cute girl from the enemy faction I must be in love and even though she already lied to me and tricked me if I just meet her again she'll definitely fall in love with me and be on our side forever!"

Also, I am willing to chalk this up to parallel development, but even so the way that the ZZ forms out of a bunch of planes crashing together is extremely Getter Robo. Judau even gets a Getter Beam to fire! Getter Dragon also shoots its beam out of its forehead. I don't know if the 70s Getter Robo anime had the Getter Boys yanking on levers to do their combinations but I know that later Getter anime adaptations have levers in the cockpits they pull to start the combination sequence, and Judau does too. Although as I sit here and think on it, it's kinda worse than Getter Robo. With the Getter everyone stays in their plane and contributes, but with the ZZ you have to have two other people fly in the other ZZ parts and then detach and get the heck away? I suppose it's not that weird a development since Katz had to fly the Gundam Mk. II's super parts in with his plane and then detach them.

Also, Rocketeer, I made this for you:
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The Rocketeer

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby The Rocketeer » Tue Mar 14, 2017 6:11 pm

Jerid Messa should know not to start shit with anyone, because it's never worked out for him.
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Re: Anime might be cool

Postby dudecon » Tue Mar 14, 2017 10:11 pm

A tip from work favorably compares Mobile Suit Gundam December Sky with Cowboy Beebop. Is there anything in this?
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Retsam

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby Retsam » Tue Mar 14, 2017 11:48 pm

I've started watching Konosuba, a "video-gamer gets sent to a RPG-styled fantasy world" comedy, and am actually enjoying it quite a bit, despite not generally being a comedy person. (Though I did enjoy One Punch Man, too.) While OPM was more of a satire, and Konosuba has satirical elements, I've seen it compared it to a sitcom and think that's a pretty good comparison.

It revolves around the misadventures of an incredibly dysfunctional RPG party (consisting of a talentless adventurer, a bratty healer goddess, an explosion-obsessed chuunibyou mage, and a knight who can't hit anything). I'm not a huge fan of the knight's schtick, but the mage is easily my favorite character in the show, and is quickly becoming one of my favorite characters, in general.

---

On the complete opposite end of the spectrum, I'm watching March Comes in Like a Lion, which is about a high-school prodigy professional Shogi (Japanese Chess) player, who struggles with depression. It's currently airing, and I've been hearing pretty good things about it in general, and it seems like basically the closest I'll ever get to a chess anime. I'm only a few episodes into it, but enjoying it so far, though it's not my usual fare.

---

I'm also trying to push through the last bit of Parasyte, A.K.A. "Existentalism: the Anime". If you read "The Stranger" and thought "this is interesting philosophy, but there aren't enough head-munching aliens", then boy is this the show for you. I started watching this, got like 70% of the way through, and then just got distracted and never finished it. So I'm trying to do that now.
Last edited by Retsam on Wed Mar 15, 2017 7:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Ringwraith

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby Ringwraith » Wed Mar 15, 2017 12:32 am

Said knight's failure to hit anything in Konosuba might make more sense later from what little I know...
(The animation in general is also wonderfully silly).
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SpammyV
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Re: Anime might be cool

Postby SpammyV » Wed Mar 15, 2017 1:25 am

dudecon wrote:A tip from work favorably compares Mobile Suit Gundam December Sky with Cowboy Beebop. Is there anything in this?


So it looks like December Sky is a compilation movie for Thunderbolt. I haven't seen anything of Thunderbolt except for the first trailer, which does have a very jazzy Cowboy Bebop soundtrack. I should give it a watch at some point.
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bitterpark

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby bitterpark » Wed Mar 15, 2017 12:42 pm

Yooo, Konosuba is the best! I love how it turns all the standard tropes of adventure in a fantasy world into something dumb and unglamorous. Like how Kazuma and Aqua have to spend weeks sleeping in a barn and working as construction grunts before they ever even start adventuring, to the point where they get totally comfortable with that lifestyle.

Ringwraith wrote:The animation in general is also wonderfully silly.

The animation, along with fantastic VA, really sells the show. It's got some of the funniest faces I've ever seen in an anime. Along with lots of gestures and body language, it's just so incredibly expressive!

I see so many people online shitting on the animation, calling it cheap, just because it's willing to go wildly off-model for expressiveness or comedic effect. Granted, the show isn't compltely flawless, and there are a few frames here and there that just look kinda gnarly. But most of the examples people use are frame-grabs of scenes where the features are obviously intentionally distorted! It's like shitting on a Road Runner episode because the Runner's legs look like a spinning wheel and not actual legs. Or because the animators didn't properly model Wile E Coyote's skull caving in and fracturing when an anvil lands on his head.

Retsam wrote:I'm not a huge fan of the knight's schtick, but the mage is easily my favorite character in the show, and is quickly becoming one of my favorite characters, in general.

Yeah, Megumin is awesome. I like how she just seems crazy at first, but then you realize she's actually a manipulative genius, and easily the smartest person on the team (which, granted, isn't a very high bar). But she's also very young, and acts very childishly in some ways (like refusing to learn anything other than exupurooooosion!!!

That's what I like about the characterization in Konosuba - it's funny and makes for great interactions between the group members, but it also actually makes sense if you think about it.

Megumin is brilliant, but childish.
Aqua is a goddess, so her stats are maxed but she's never had to deal with real problems, or worked a day in her life, so she has the willpower and emotional fortitude of a five-year-old child, complete with stunning naivity, constant whining and fits of undignified bawling whenever she has to deal with anything. Unless the undead or religious things are involved, which is the one time she can get her shit together and actually do a really good job.
Kazuma is a videogame nerd and shut-in with no special powers or remarkable abilities, and his dreams of going on a big escapist fantasy adventure are continually shattered by the less-than-glamorous reality, leaving him perpetually ill-tempered, irritated, out of his depth and on the verge of collapsing in frustration. He does have a noble and generous side, buried very deep down, but usually he's just a mean, spiteful jerk who continually fails to display any sort of chivalry, and a filthy pervert who spies on his own teammates (I mean, not having access to the Internet would be hard on anyone, but come on).
And Darkness is... well, Darkness. I will say, she is the most one-note out of all the team members in the first season. I was really hoping they would flesh her out more in the second season, and they totally do.

Retsam wrote:On the complete opposite end of the spectrum, I'm watching March Comes in Like a Lion, which is about a high-school prodigy professional Shogi (Japanese Chess) player, who struggles with depression. It's currently airing, and I've been hearing pretty good things about it in general, and it seems like basically the closest I'll ever get to a chess anime. I'm only a few episodes into it, but enjoying it so far, though it's not my usual fare.

Lion is legit. It gets very deep into some very real problems, in a way not a lot of anime does. It's not about a teen trying to balance his highscool love life and the need to save the world from evil demons. It's about a teen who spends his empty evenings staring at the ceiling, trying not to drown in his own thoughts. Discovering that it's not paying for your own rent and groceries that makes one an adult, but all the pain and humiliation that usually comes along with that. Wondering if his life's dedication to shogi, which he doesn't even like but without which he truly has nothing, was even the right choice. Wondering if he will ever be happy with that choice. And dealing with his step-sister who is the worst person in the world.

Yet it also includes enough moments of levity and silliness to balance out all the diving into anxiety and suicidal depression, making the show an emotionally-gripping drama and stopping it from turning into pure misery porn (though I do love me some misery porn). It reminds me of Welcome to the NHK in that regard, though I'd say it's more balanced whereas NHK tends to oscillate more between the two extremes.

The one minor gripe I have with the show is the portrayal of the three sisters whose hospitality Rei bumbles into. The show did need to balance out the gaping vortex of darkness that is his life with some of their sunshine, but I feel like it's gone a bit overboard with that. They're just a bit too happy and nice, even when they're having issues or fighting, even down to the way they're drawn. I love most of the show's expressionist artstyle choices, but the sisters' visual portrayal just seems like too much, especially in the scenes where Rei isn't even there, so you can't even say it's showing them through his idealizing lens.

Also, I feel that the show loses a lot of it's emotional bite after the halfway point. It makes sense that it does, since Rei finds some actual people to hang out and talk shogi with, making him much healthier emotionally, and it's still a very interesting show. It goes on to explore other characters, but it feels like it's lost some of the unusual angle it's had. Or maybe that's just me missing the misery porn.

Retsam wrote:I'm also trying to push through the last bit of Parasyte, A.K.A. "Existentalism: the Anime". If you read "The Stranger" and thought "this is interesting philosophy, but there aren't enough head-munching aliens", then boy is this the show for you. I started watching this, got like 70% of the way through, and then just got distracted and never finished it. So I'm trying to do that now.

Existentialism, you say? I thought it was just a dumb sci-fi/horror thing. Well, color me intrigued, now I'll definitely check it out.
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Retsam

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby Retsam » Wed Mar 15, 2017 10:40 pm

bitterpark wrote:
Retsam wrote:I'm also trying to push through the last bit of Parasyte, A.K.A. "Existentalism: the Anime". If you read "The Stranger" and thought "this is interesting philosophy, but there aren't enough head-munching aliens", then boy is this the show for you. I started watching this, got like 70% of the way through, and then just got distracted and never finished it. So I'm trying to do that now.

Existentialism, you say? I thought it was just a dumb sci-fi/horror thing. Well, color me intrigued, now I'll definitely check it out.


I wouldn't go in expecting some deep philosophical masterwork (at least not based on the 80% I've seen so far), but it's definitely a show that aspires to be more than just a sci-fi horror thriller. It takes the "head-eating aliens that can seamlessly blend into society" concept and gets a lot of mileage out of it as an exploration of what it means to be human.

More than anything, it seems to be inspired by Kafka's Metamorphosis. It begins with the main character waking up to discover that he's no longer entirely human: he hasn't turned into a giant insect, but his right hand has been replaced with an alien parasite. (And yet the show never makes an alien hand syndrome joke...) These parasites, which are often compared to insects in their behavior, usually replace the person's head (killing the person, obviously), but the main character's was only able to replace the hand, instead. (The episodes are all named after literary works, and the first episode is fittingly titled "Metamorphosis")

So, yeah, it's well worth a look if you're looking for a bit more of a philosophical bent to an action show.
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SpammyV
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Re: Anime might be cool

Postby SpammyV » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:34 am

Mobile Suit ZZ Gundam: Hope You Don't Get Tired of Hostage Plots

So uh, while Glemy starts out as being the Katz of Neo Zeon, it actually turns out that Glemy is a creepy shitlord who's one bad day away from being a serial killer. Knowing what I do about the back half of ZZ I'm nowhere near as surprised as I was when he first appeared.

I didn't realize it until this week, but Judau's Japanese VA also voices Shinobu, the protagonist from another mecha series, Dancouga. The show with no budget that can't decide whether it's real robots in a super robot show, or if it's a super robot show with a lot of subversions. But uh, yatte yaruze*.

The Moon Moon arc is pretty eh, the pace suddenly stops for two episodes as we deal with this random junk, but... Honestly I'm kind of giving it a pass because I like the idea of a space colony without contact with the outside world for generations reverting to a less technologically adept society. Seeing the overgrown interior was cool. Although with no way to repair their colony they're done for if they have an unlucky incident unless someone else stops in to sponsor them.

Emily please stop trying to get into Bright's pants he's married he has two kids. He hasn't seen his family in a year or something and one of his kids is Hathaway but the point stands. Also Bright, you have two kids you're no longer allowed to feel self-conscious when someone calls you old.

You know what I'm still kinda bummed about Fa leaving. She really did not fit at this point but still, except for Bright and a few of the minor crew, the cast of Zeta on the Argama all got killed or turned into a vegetable except for Fa. And then she left. And now we're stuck with these annoying ZZ kids.

*Shinobu's catchphrase from Dancouga. It basically means "Let's do it!"
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The Rocketeer

Re: Anime might be cool

Postby The Rocketeer » Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:16 am

Ah, it thrills my heart to know you've reached the shallow end of Tomino's return to ZZ, where he turns his countenance on all things lighthearted and hisses, "No, this must not stand."

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