Episode 7 and 8 Rating: 4/5 curious clouds WOW we’ve derped through an entire season of slice of life, magic girl summer fun and we’ve finally arrived at the entire point of season three… the eight class card. Illya, Miyu, … Continue reading
Episode 5 Rating: 3/5 complacent clouds Fate Kaleid Liner is really taking it easy with season three. I mean, not much happens every week. There’s been a brief mention of the clouds but beyond the few rare trance scenes in … Continue reading
Hey guys! Happy World Photography Day!
I didn’t even know until I checked Twitter but apparently there is a day for every thing now, thanks to social media. In honour of today I wanted to share with you guys a really fun photography shoot I did last month with my Kill La Kill Mako Mankanshoku Nendoroid figure. One of the reasons why I bought Mako was because she is such a fun and versatile character. You can literally set her up in any setting and her personality will instantly add its own charm to the atmosphere. In this shoot, I played around with lighting, props and tons of bright colours as inspired by summer sunshine. This was also the first time I used a full frame Nikon D750, a new camera that was passed over to me by my dad. I used the 24-120 mm Nikkor lens and it was really a trick trying to figure out the angles because the lens wouldn’t focus if I pushed the focal point too close. The only bit of editing done was with contrast and brightness. Overall I am quite pleased with these final shots and I hope you’ll enjoy scrolling through 🙂
What are you pondering today?
Episodes 4-5 Rating: 3/5 complacent clouds As much as I love Fate Kaleid for all its adorable slice of life antics, I do think there is little to no point in watching the last two episodes of KALMIA just because … Continue reading
Rating: 2/5 complacent clouds It seems like the third episode of Fate Kaleid Liner season three is still having too much fun with the slice of life fun. Mimi ends up putting down all her weird fanfic thoughts about the … Continue reading
“For being born, for being alive up till today, for meeting Illya, everyone and even Shirou, I am grateful. Thank you.” – Miyu Rating: 4/5 happy clouds Our group of cute girls head to the beach for real this episode. … Continue reading
Rating: 3/5 happy clouds WOW I have been waiting for the return of this season for a LONG LONG time and I’m so ecstatic to bring to you my first impressions of Fate Kaleid Liner today. While subsequent seasons, in … Continue reading
Just here to update you folks on the blog about my new video on key summer favourite anime I’ll be looking forward to. As well, I wanted to present the summer season poll so you guys can vote for what … Continue reading
Ahhhh~ This will be the third summer of anime I will be covering since I started Little Cloud Curiosity. Usually summer holds some of my most anticipated anime but it seems like most of my hype ended with the conclusion of previous spring season series such as Fate/Stay Night Unlimited Blade Works and Nisekoi Season 2. I am however excited for a few new shows coming up this summer as well eagerly awaiting more episode from already established franchises. Now then, most you know my general taste judging from my previous reviews – a lot of fantasy, slice of life, romantic, action, epic… not too much gore, not too much blood and so on. Now without further ado, allow me to introduce to you all the run-down of my anime line up this month…
Fate/Kaleid Liner Prisma Illya 2wei Herz!! (プリズマ☆イリヤ ツヴァイ ヘルツ!) – AHHHHHH This is my most anticipated series for the summer!! I reviewed the first two season in previous seasons and I AM SO EXCITED FOR MORE ILYA. With the appearance of Kuro in 2wei, there are still so many unanswered questions to Ilya’s family story (ufufufu) and Miyu’s back story which is one of the most interesting parts of the series. Seriously this is one of the most fun and best spin-off worlds to come from the Fate world and I enjoy it immensely because it combines all the great elements of the Nasuverse with cutesy and enjoyable aspects of the magic girl genre.
Release Date: July 25, 2015
Chaos Dragon: Sekiryuu Senyaku (ケイオスドラゴン 赤竜戦役) – I wasn’t a big fan of the premise because historical fictional action series aren’t usually as stimulating for my taste however the teaser looks so suspenseful and action charged. On top of that the animation is so vibrant and the colours so bold and the script features a pretty strong ensemble of immensely seasoned voice actors such as Unshou Ishizuka, Miyuki Sawashiro, Maaya Uchida and Marina Inoue.
The story focuses on a power conflict between two war-torn countries – Donatia and Kouran. With a plot that boasts the brains of Gen Urobochi, Kinoko Nasu, Iduki Kougyoku, Ryohgo Narita and Simadoriru, this light novel series is definitely hyped up for an action packed release. Anime fans who have been a bit bored from the slice of life and romance series from the Spring season will enjoy a new change in pace.
Release Date: July 2, 2015
Wooser no Sono Higurashi Mugen Hen (うーさーのその日暮らし 夢幻編) – Ahhh Wooser~~ I have anticipated more of this quirky and fun series since I watched the entire first two seasons in about two hours last summer. Wooser is a rather crass and blunt little mascot dog who gets into a bit of mischief every now and then. The main point of the story telling is on short gags and little skits where Wooser interacts with other characters. Fans of Japanese contemporary trends or anime might catch some of the references from anime series from the same producing company. What’s great about the series is that its dialogue ranges from absolute nonsense to jaded pieces of every day advice. The voice actors are absolutely A+ for this series with popular singer and seiyuu Mamoru Miyano heading the line-up as the beloved Wooser and Hiroshi Kamiya-sama as Darth Wooser.
Release Date: July 3, 2015
Akagami no Shirayuki-Hime (赤髪の白雪姫) – Loosely translated as “Snow White with the Red-Hair” the promo video features a spunky and outgoing girl who, in order to escape marriage with a prince, cuts her hair and runs off to the next country. She goes on… a bit of an adventure and the plot mimics a bit the classical German fairy tale Snow White by the Brothers Grimm. It seems a bit generic but I’m usually willing to give anything within the fantasy genre a chance. As well, it’s always interesting to see what writers can do with fairy tale spin-off adaptations. The cast of main characters features one of my favourite voice actors ever – Nobuhiko Okamoto (Mikoto from Gekkan Shoujo Noazki-kun, Yoichi from Owari no Seraph and Shouta from Sekaiichi Hatsukoi).
Release Date: July 7, 2015
Charlotte (シャーロット) – Oh P.A. Works we meet again with a new slice of life series named Charlotte. We’ve seen major mishaps with Glasslip but a major pick up since Shirobako in previous season. P.A. Works is probably my favourite company and has a tendency to pick up stories and series that really lean towards my taste as a result I will be checking out Charlotte which incorporates slice of life high school life with supernatural elements in each of the characters. Judging from the promo video, the music seems quite avant-garde off the get go but hits us hard with an emotional ballad towards the end.
Directed by Yoshiyuki Asai, who was also responsible for series such as Angel Beats and my personal favourite, Nagi no Asukara, Charlotte will feature a cast of voices we’ve seen in a ton of recent and popular anime series. Ayane Sakura (Yozora from Haganai, Shimakaze KanColle and Haru from Nisekoi), Maaya Uchida (Futaba from Ao Haru Ride, Rikka from Chuunibyou, Hyori from Noragami), Kouki Uchiyama (Seiya from Amagi Brilliant Park, Dio from Buddy Complex, Raku from Nisekoi), Takahiro Mizushima (Romeo from Romeo x Juliet and Haruki from White Album 2). There seems to be a lot of potential for a fast-paced series despite the slice of life tag. Oh I’m waiting for you to wrench my heart out Charlotte.
Release Date: July 5, 2015
Chu Feng: BEE-(雛蜂-BEE-) – Coming at you all this season is a new series adapted from a Chinese manhua originally written and drawn by Sun Heng. I’m not usually into ecchi but the story primarily falls into seinen, fantasy, mecha and action categories as well. The story follows a guy named Shun Hao Xuan who lives in a future generation. When he gets caught up in the arms race conflict and taken as hostage, a beautiful girl swoops in and happens to save him while she’s on mission. The girl – Liuli (voiced by the talented and stunning Kana Hanazawa), is the latest generation of the Vanguard, created from new engineering technologies. Her final mission before retirement is to protect the “Son of Eden.”
Sounds like an interesting premise overall. I really hope it gets fluid animation because the mecha aspects are really crucial to the flow of the story and there is a lot of combat so we need really smooth transitions and high quality animation art to get the mood of the futuristic world.
Release Date: July 23, 2015
Gate: Jieitai Kanochi nite, Kaku Tatakeri (ゲート 自衛隊 彼の地にて、斯く戦えり) –This series initially caught my eye because of how much one of the characters on the poster reminded me of Sinon from Sword Art Online: Gun Gale Online. A-1 Pictures is really bringing their A-game this season. This new anime takes place in a future and alternate Tokyo where a “Gate” opened up in Ginza, heralding mobs of monsters into the city. The attack is met by the Japan Ground-Self Defence force and the story narrows in on a young officer named Youji Itami who leads a team to a number of different places. The plot seems to attempt to balance international political conflict with fantasy aspects while incorporating themes such as knowledge, friendship and perspective when it comes character interactions. Sounds like A LOT going on but at least animation will definitely be on par.
The cast is looking good with its main characters featuring seiyuu such as Risa Taneda (Mirai from Kyoukai no Kanata and Kaori from Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso), Junichi Suwabe (Undertaker from Kuroshitsuji, Archer from Fate/Stay Night and Ren from Uta no Prince-sama), Hisako Kanemoto (Taiga from Fate/Zero and Ami Mizuno from Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon Crystal) and my new favourite, Nao Touyama (Chitoge from Nisekoi and Himiko from Nobunaga the Fool)
Release Date: July 4, 2015
Makura no Danshi (まくらのだんし) – OMG WHY IS THIS GETTING AN ANIME =.=””” IT WAS ORIGINALLY AN APP… and it is SOOO ridiculously as an anime series concept. I can’t see how this could even be an anime. Basically… a cute anime boy stares at you and whispers things to you as you go to sleep. In every episode. I know. The anime industry. Japan. Why…
Release Date: July 14, 2015
Rokka no Yusha (六花の勇者) – Adapted from a light novel, I’m quite excited to check out this new fantasy series this season. It’s a relatively new series that’s only been out since 2011, written by Ishio Yamagata with illustrations by Miyagi. The story focuses on a boy named Adlet who was selected among the Heroes of the Six Flowers to be the strongest on Earth. He meets up with a band of other interesting characters, one of which is the enemy…
The series will be brought to you by Studio Passione, featuring a main cast of voices including Soma Saito, Yoko Hikasa, Aoi Yuki, Koki Uchiyama, Ai Kakuma, Rina Sato and Kenichi Suzumura; all in all a fairly stable cast of seiyuu. I virtually know nothing of the series except what I’ve seen in promotional media since I have a tendency to read light novels after their anime adaptations. Hopefully Rokka no Yusha will bring some much needed mystery fantasy elements into our lives this season.
Release Date: July 5, 2015
Working!! (ワーキング!!) – This cute new slice-of-life series by A-1 Pictures caught my eye last minute when I was scrolling through the summer chart releases. The story takes place specifically in Hokkaido, Japan called Wagnaria. A high schooler named Sota Takanashi ends up working part-time at a restaurant with a bunch of quirky and eccentric characters. The promotional video looks TOTALLY DERP but I suppose that’s what gives it its charm in this season’s line-up. The cast has some of the most notable voices in the industry, Daisuke Ono, Hiroshi Kamiya-sama, Jun Fukuyama, Jouji Nakata, Eri Kitamura, Kumiko Watanabe, Kana Asumi and many others.
Release Date: July 5, 2015
Junjou Romantica Season 3 (純情ロマンチカ) – AHHHH Yaoi and boys love fans will be thrilled for the latest anime adaptation of Nakamura Shungiku’s popular series, Junjou Romantica. Personally I like Sekaiichi Hatsukoi more because it has more lighthearted back story material versus Junjou Romantica which features more mature emotional content between the characters. However, I am a HUGE fan of Nakamura Shungiku’s art style and writing. Her humour is ON POINT. Junjou Romantica is also great for yaoi fans who want a lighter series for their taste as well as beginner readers who are looking to dip their toes into the genre.
The series follows three different couples but mainly a boy named Misaki Takahashi, who through his brother, ends up living with a famous author named Akihiko Usami (and becoming his lover in the process ahem*). The original cast is back of course with Takahiro Sakurai (as Misaki Takahashi), Hikaru Hanada (as Akihiko Usami), Kentaro Itou (as Hiroki Kamijou), Nobutoshi Canna (as Nowaki, Kusama), Kazuhiko Inoue (as You Miyagi) and Daisuke Kishio (as Shinobu Takatsuki). Studio Deen will be handling the animation.
Release Date: July 9, 2015
Thank you guys so much for reading, if you have time or feel so inclined, please take a moment to offer your vote in the poll, your opinion and votes really make a difference to which main series I follow on a weekly basis with blog recaps and contribute to the brainstorming process for new anime impression vlogs and series review. First impressions vlogs and blog posts will be coming for most if not all of the series listed above so stay tuned for that. Let me know in the poll suggestions if you have a recommendation for me not listed above or tweet me @CuriousCloudy to tell me what new series you’re most looking forward to and I will talk to you guys very soon ^^/
What are you pondering today?
Episode ten of Houkago no Pleiades finally reveals the antagonist’s true identity to Subaru. Subaru is shocked to find out her gardening sweetheart Minato is actually the horned demon (STILL UNNAMED) who has been fighting the girls for fragments. Interestingly enough, we also get a flashback back story of Minato’s childhood, when he came across an alien that needed help retrieving spaceship fragments. Things take a turn from nostalgic to confusing when we throw in Minato’s back story because while it contributes to the reason behind Minato’s fragment theft, it discards the other girls from the story and sidelines them from a sudden romance development between Minato and Subaru. But I’ll try to keep it straightforward while I explain.
During Minato’s childhood, the meteor shower over the earth was actually a scattering of spaceship energy fragments. He happens to be able to see the fragments and meets the alien retrieving them. Around the same time, it just so happens that Subaru was visiting her mother in the hospital and stumbles upon Minato’s room. They have a weird trippy space dream moment together (which we get no explanations for). Subaru ends up becoming Minato’s first “hope” in his life. But later in a twist reveal, Minato realizes that his body is actually in terminal condition but he’s been under the alien’s magic spell all this time. As a result, Minato begins to deny his present self and hopes to use the engine fragment to change his past. He turns into the horned evil demon when his magic turns into curses.
Meanwhile with the main group of magic girls, Subaru chases after Minato all the way up into space. Minato knows the engine fragments have the ability to change destinies. He also believes it has the power to grant wishes and his wish is to disappear from the earth.
Throughout the entire episode, I can’t really tell if Minato knows if Subaru is real or not. But in order to convince Minato that their memories were real together, Subaru undoes her transformation in space, a bad move… Minato embraces her but ends up disintegrating into the last fragment. Subaru returns to earth, cradled in a bubble of magic, realizing that she hasn’t changed at all, feeling still so powerless in her current situation. Minato ends up being stabbed by the fragment… an awkward ending for sure.
This would be much more romantic if Minato didn’t look like a girl and if the romantic sub plot was much more relevant earlier in the series.
The series goes from confusing to just weird. When Subaru returns to earth with the twelve fragments, she ends up losing the power to use magic because she’s already “become something” as in, she’s chosen her path… Since magic girls can only use magic because of their “potential,” in choosing a path, Subaru’s lost her potential. The confusing thing is that Subaru thinks she hasn’t changed but everything and everyone around her says she has. Self-identity crisis to the max.
The other girls end up chasing down a fragment, running hundreds of light years far from the earth in order to catch it. The alien posits that the fragment isn’t being properly collected because all the girls are not wholeheartedly determined to collect the fragments. Everyone else decides to pitch in and pursue the fragment despite the dangers and the chase continues.
I can’t tell if the story is difficult to follow because of the translations or because the plot simply has too many holes. Like seriously if they were going to build up Houkago no Pleiades to such a complex ending, we should have been given a lot more explanations prior to this. At times it just feels like the alien keeps pulling more and more random explanations out of thin air to explain the sudden developments of the story.
While the other girls are chasing the fragment to the edges of the universe, Subaru is pondering her childhood friend and first love over some strawberry milk. Somehow, she comes to her own conclusion over what is happening and endeavours to enter the garden again to find Minato. However, she finds herself as the hospital instead, in the room where Minato’s body is lying unconscious.
After a heart-to-heart (of sorts), Subaru finds herself newly transformed and reunites with Minato in space. Wow… good magic Minato is quite princely and encourages Subaru to be herself, to do what her heart tells her is right. Subaru then reunites with the other girls and it seems like the “main conflict” has been resolved? Ish?
When I reflect one everything that’s happened, it sort of makes sense and the plot holes are mostly filled by the “magic” elements that seem to solve all problems in a deux ex machina way. If you overthink the details, the plot resolution of Houkago no Pleiades might confuse you. While it seem slike after episode eleven of the show, the emotional conflict has been resolved among the characters, I just don’t see a correlation between Subaru’s desire to change and Minato’s back story, it’s just disjointed.
From this point I don’t see how episode twelve could potentially be exciting in any way. Other than a huge battle culminating in the collection of the last fragment, it should be relatively anti-climactic since all the interpersonal and intrapersonal problems have been “resolved” in this week’s episode. Also, a few questions come to mind. Is Minato actually real? Or still sick? Is his magic self a manifestation of his soul since his body is still in a coma? How did Subaru get new powers? Simply from the fragment from the other alien’s spaceship? How do both alien’s spaceships come to play and not clash in the plot? Whatever actually happened to that other alien? Does he not feel responsible for Minato’s “evil” and cursed self? So many questions that require more in depth explanations.
Mixing magic, astronomy and physics together seems all too dysfunctional in this series. Up till now we saw magic girl fragment retrievals buoyed by general scientific explanations. I’m no physics expert but most of the explanations from the Pleiades seemed fairly sound for what was happening. But once we got to the end of the show, magic took over what science initially tried to ground. As a result, the rules in this world seem quite topsy-turvy, made to suit plot events wherever they were needed and discarded when they hindered plot progression. At this point I’m really just hoping for a neat and simple finish from the series.
What are you pondering today?