a pressing question

Murder Princess, manga, thin slicing, and more.


I picked up the first GN for Murder Princess, and I’m surprised that the series only has two GNs. That’s a kick in the pants… at least thus far it’s been the most enjoyable all-too-short OVA since Iriya no Sora and much, much, much, much, much better than Mai Otome Zwei and Hellsing. The manga is pretty good (Broccoli did a decent job… much better than ADV Manga), but I disagree with Xeifa about the changes from the manga: I’m always in favor of positive changes. Changing Yu Fan and Lan to female twincest assassins? I’m all for it. Changing the infamous Utawarerumono archers to, uh, something other than blatantly male? I’m all for it. Adding in significantly more homoerotic elements between Milano and Alita (I’ll use this name from now on) as well as fanservice? I’m all for it. Come on… just appreciate the cover for volume three. Let’s say for example Hayate the Combat Butler suddenly featured one Maria bath scene an episode. Completely inexplicable and deviates from the manga– I wouldn’t complain; I’d praise.

The art and setting of Murder Princess reminds me of Jing, King of Bandits… but Murder isn’t as intricate and trippy. I mention Jing once-in-a-while, and it’s a great manga series. One of those “I should write a post about it but never get around to it” type of things. The art’s top notch, and each volume is a self-contained story. Jing himself is like the manga James Bond complete with a different Jing Girl every volume. The anime for it though, B-L-A-H. Love to hear some feedback on obscure or less popular manga recommendations from the readers.


For some quick hits, Haruhi gets a rival and Kyon’s harem expands… now with TWO omnipotent deities. Lucky sonuvabitch. It’s not going to be a long life, but at least a fun one.

Da Capo II is getting animated, and, my gosh, WHY?!? I’m still traumatized from the 52 episodes where they get rid of the Nekomimi Meido just to have two siblings get married.

Code Geass has maybe a sequel in the works… because… you know… the original was so awesome and ass-kicking…


The gist that I get from reading all of the feedback (I love all the thought that a few people put into their comments) from thin slicing spring 2007 is that I ranked Darker Than Black too low and Heroic Age too high. Usually I try to push out a thin slicing post around weeks two and three, but this time it was more like week five. Of course, I cannot watch five times twenty-five or so, so most series are just the first one or two episodes… and Heroic Age had a tremendous start, as did Gurren… which is the WHOLE POINT of thin slicing. Get a feeling from just a small portion of the whole pie. It’s not perfect (as seen with something like Gun x Sword which picks up later or how I panned Ouran), but even if I’m 80% on target, that means I’m still doing better than Peter King on his NFL picks.

Darker Than Black just isn’t my taste. Since when did AoMM ever follow a slick sci-fi techno-mumble-jumbo series? If a meido pops up, gimme a call, otherwise I’ll be too busy delighting on the sheer ridiculousness that is Overdrive. As I pointed out, these are my preferences… these are no the “right” answers or is thin slicing an attempt to rank the series in anything other than “in which order would I watch them if they arrived at the same time?” People who read this blog regularly should not be surprised that I’d rank Hayate higher than DTB.

Time for some reader comments…

CN: My god he’s right. Silver race are totally protoss wannabes. Bronze is of course some strange upgraded zerg and Iron is obviously terran. Making Gold… some kind of infinitely more powerful and less senseless/arrogant version of the Xel’Naga? Wow this show isn’t gonna be the same for me ever again.

This refers to the races in Heroic Age… honestly, XEBEC should have just named the series “Starcraft” and had Age actually be a peppy human female lieutenant who was stranded there. Maybe this was a subconscious reason why I’m drawn to this series… power overwhelming…

Blade-mun: Over Drive has personal appeal because I am a cyclist. (Cycling is a Nerds sport) I have to totally rip Mikoto’s bike, because it has to be a custom build. In the first ep it showed some close up shots on the bike and its parts are a total mismatch. The Crank is a really high end piece with external earings, IE Shimano’s Hollowtech II tech. That doesn’t come on anything lowerer then 105. The shifters however are Tiagra, which is second to the bottom of the barrel(Sora). The brakes and tires were no-name looking. Yet it had LOOK clipless pedals on it, which are high end. The wheels are a mystery to me. Its got spoke lacing like a high end wheelset but the rims look cheesy..and there are alot of cheap knock off wheels that use fancy spoke lacing to look expensive.

Obviously Blade-mun is as frustrated as I am whenever I see someone like Tomitake attempt photography in an anime. Though I enjoyed this comment just because I e-mailed it to a friend of mine who is into mountain biking, and this is his response, “Wait, I thought you wrote an anime blog?”

Crusader: I hated Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, GONZO defiling one of his lesser works is a joy to behold. Take that English Literature class!

I think R&J is one of his best works. It may not be the best critical or technical work, but it’s the work that appealed to the most people and what most people will associate with Shakespeare. It’s kinda like what FF7 is to Square.

(I recently watched a horrible Chinese movie, The Banquet, that had the exact same plot as Hamlet, but it didn’t credit Shakespeare. My quick review: visually good but soulless. Besides Ziyi, all of the actors were overmatched, kinda like the Kirk Hinrich trying to attack Detroit’s zone defense. The movie also had zero, zilch, nada of Shakespeare’s undertones or subtleness.)

Mirrinus: I actually share some of Crusader’s sentiments here. I love Shakespeare’s works, but I really can’t stand Romeo and Juliet at all. I’d much rather see a good anime adaption of Much Ado About Nothing. They’d need Tomokazu Sugita playing the witty and sarcastic Benedict, and of course Beatrice is the perfect Renaissance Tsundere.

If Gonzo actually read this blog, I’m sure that they’d be kicking themselves because they could have cast Rie Kugimiya as the wrathful loli tsundere giant robot pilot for Much Ado About Nothing… I’d love to see Gonzo adapt something like To Kill a Mockingbird, Things Fall Apart, The Great Gatsby, or The Scarlet Letter just to see how badly they’d mangle it. Andohbytheway, I think the greatest moment in anime history would be at the very end of Code Geass, the following credit pops up: “Based on Huckleberry Finn.”

quigonkenny: Oh, and as for “Gonzo Presents Walt Disney’s MechaDumbo”? (Dumbogelion? The Big Dumb O? Dumbo Seed Destiny? Dumbotech?) That’s some brilliant irony, since there’s no studio better at raping classical literature on either side of the Pacific than Disney.

Enjoyed quigonkenny’s response as well. Linking Disney with Gonzo is delicious observation and gives me a chance to mention that one of Disney’s upcoming major projects is a live action version of Kiki’s Delivery Service. I can’t wait for the song and dance and Lindsay Lohan to star as Ursula.


Kaioshin_Sama: Also I notice that Lucky Channel seemed to come way way earlier than in previous episodes, which also cut down the opportunity for good jokes to make up for the wasted ones. Another example of poor pacing.

Comment came with respect to Lucky Star 5. A challenge like that… I do not back down!

Episode 1: 19:30 – 21:51
Episode 2: 18:10 – 21:39
Episode 3: 19:38 – 21:54
Episode 4: 19:02 – 21:52
Episode 5: 18:20 – 21:25

“Way earlier?” I don’t know. 30 seconds really isn’t even enough time to microwave a burrito. Besides, episode 5 was neither the earliest nor the longest Lucky Channel. I honestly wouldn’t mind a 24 minute long Lucky Channel– that would be more awesome than Weekend Update with Dennis Miller.

(BTW, this is completely off-hand info, but I hear that if you lick psychedelic toads before watching Lucky Star or reading AoMM, it’ll improve the enjoyment of either tremendously.)

Northernshadows: I’m reasonably sure Konata plays Ragnarok Online.

Gotta love how almost half the comments for Lucky Star now are related to “What the heck is Konata playing?” This is honestly more riveting than trying to figure out who is the most insane girl in Higurashi. What we know is that there’s six player parties and xp death penalty (rules out WoW). There’s swords (rules out EVE). There’s tanks and wizards as well as soloing (rules out FFXI). I’d lean more towards RO, but that’s so easily hacked, I’m not sure why Konata would play that. Maybe it’s just a weird hybrid of everything… kinda like Higurashi, she plays a different game each episode. Though I more expect Konata to play something like Fate/Stay Night or Counterstrike or even Starcraft than an MMO. Can you imagine her glee as she lets loose a ‘lisk rush on poor LOL FANG-SENSEI?

sorry dude: sorry dude

since [Lucky Star] is the most popular show this season

you just have to keep blogging it even if you don’t like it

sorry dude

Would you like fries with that?

FlameStrike: Touka Gettan’s random backwards showing is just manages to piss me the hell off, I mean who watchs the last episode first anyway?

How do you feel about an anime that aired the fourth to last episode as the first one?

Eric: I kept thinking your style of writing seems familiar… to Bill Simmons! The “if I receive one episode…” line is very reminiscent to Simmons’ “if my life is one the line, blah blah blah,” or “if I have to bet my house, blah blah blah.” I have noticed the similarity for some time, but this is the first time I immediately connect your post to Simmon’s blog.

I get a comparison to Bill every few months or so, and it is not surprising: I write about anime and tosses in sports analogies; he writes about pop culture and tosses in sports analogies. The first time someone brought this topic up was about two years ago, and I had no clue who he is… then after reading a few of his articles, I came to the conclusion that what we really have in common is our reader bases, hence why I started doing the “Yep… these are my readers” bit.

With that said, I’m probably the only anime blogger who reads more NBA blogs than anime blogs. I really enjoy need4sheed (must for any Pistons fan), Dime Smack (very understated sense of humor… love it), and Steve Kerr’s blog (most level-headed analysis… period).

Xellos-_^: If Milano and Alita have hot sex how you define it:

A. Masturbation
B. Incest
C. Hot Lesbian Sex
D. All of the Above

Yep… these are my readers. And this is my new poll question.

37 Responses to “a pressing question”

  1. Your poll’s upside down with ‘all of the above’ at the top. With respect to Murder Princess, I’m tempted to say all anime could do with understated homoeroticism, except it’d probably then be applied to the guys as often as the girls. I don’t think we need a Klaus/Hayate bath scene. *shudder*

  2. I while I agree that Romeo and Juliet is the most well known. It is only well known so far as every student in the English speaking countries have to go through the monotony of it all. My theory is that it is rammed down the throat of teenagers because it is about teenagers. Though a classic it may have been simply because we all call it as such it is not inviolable nor in any way sacred.

    R&J is not the first story of star crossed lovers, but as an export of the English Renaissance much of it seems glaringly archaic. After all Juliet is what thirteen and running about like a tart. While this does occur for the stupid segment of the population in much of the West 13 is not really the majority’s age of consent.

    As for FFVII I liked FFVI more, just personal preference really. Besides Square is now being known for spin-off after spin-off, repackaging old games instead of using digital distribution, and proposing that we will have to endure a decade of FFXIII so I will be freaking 30ish for FFXIV.

  3. Hmm, I find myself agreeing with Crusader again for some reason. Including the part about FFVI.

  4. An animated Much Ado About Nothing would be awesome. I’ve always felt like most of Shakespeare’s work is ignored except for Romeo and Juliet, which is in itself based off an earlier poem.

  5. H-how on Earth can Yoko be 14?!
    She looks so damn mature.

  6. >> H-how on Earth can Yoko be 14?! She looks so damn mature.

    You dun watch enough anime.

  7. There’s tanks, wizards(blm’s), and soloing in ffxi.

    Not so much finding an omgrare sword while soloing though.

    Honestly though, all the references in Lucky Star seem to match up to ffxi perfectly except for the above. Even the remarks about her friend soloing in the sewers for a long period of time makes sense if you assume he’s a Beastmaster.

  8. >>>Darker Than Black just isn’t my taste. Since when did AoMM ever follow a slick sci-fi techno-mumble-jumbo series?

    I thought you liked GiTS?

  9. To say the truth, I haven’t really seen any new element in the Murder Princess OVA that I agree with…

    I won’t complain about how the OVA didn’t convey the same machinegun pacing and lightheartedness of the manga, since there are very few anime adaptions which managed that.

    I AM pretty unhappy about how they changed Alita’s fighting style though… The way she fights with a single katana was suppose to be an exotic thing among the European-style settings. Her dual-wielding the katana and the dagger sort of reduced the katana to simply a sword, and her “movelist” in the OVA is just sort of a generic hack & slash due to the change.

    Plus I was also kind of peeved about how there are some truely great dramatic lines which didn’t make it into the anime-

    -Like the one in chapter 1 where Milano commented on how curious it is to see her own body hosting such a ferocious fighting spirit; or when Alita was fighting giant bees and the big-nosed butler was remarking in awe at how it’s the first time in history where it’s the ruler defending the people as opposed to the other way around (instead we see Altia fighting an ugly ant-man-thing, and a head-scratching subplot about how she’s going berserk and almost killing people).

    But eh, I guess the cool OP and bath scene in ep 2 makes up for some of it.

  10. On the topic of classic literature, lately I’ve been thinking that the greatest tsundere character of all time just might be Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice. Seriously, think about it.

  11. Yeah but almost anything is better than watching Dennis Miller blast out his anti-liberal pro-conservative opinions. The guys just a big blowhard, like yours truly.

  12. Last time I asked whether Konata would be a PLD bloodtank or a NIN blinktank if she were playing FFXI. I’m leaning ever closer to NIN for her main job right now, mostly due to the solo comments. I can see her being good enough to solo minor HNMs like Serket, probably as NIN/WHM. Perhaps she’ll be the first player to solo Charybdis for the awesome sword (Joyeuse)? I think that one might be duo-able already with a fantastic NIN tank and maybe a BRD or RDM. Or maybe she was only soloing to find the ToD so she could kill it at next spawn with her linkshell? Linkshell chat in FFXI is also green by default, I believe…

    >> On the topic of classic literature, lately I’ve been thinking that the greatest tsundere character of all time just might be Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice. Seriously, think about it.

    In terms of tsundere-ness, Elizabeth Bennet would be the equivalent of Kagami nagging and teasing Konata. Beatrice would be the equivalent of Louise wailing on Saito with a horse whip. Luckily, Benedick’s got more of a spine than Saito.

  13. wow… great to see another guy paying respect to Steve Kerr. I swear that guy gets flamed by Yahoo users so much its painful for me to see..

    lol.. off topic comment on an anime blog..

  14. lolx…its nice reading ur responses to the comments here..im not knowledgable yet in the world of anime so i cant say the witty comments evry1 else says here….^^
    really love the way u just put random pics in ur posts…i look forward to them..XD

  15. BTW, speaking of Gurren Lagaan… I’m finding it quite hard to take Viral (the villain piloting the dual-wielding Ganmen that Gurren Lagaan jacked its helmet from) seriously due to him being voiced by Nobuyuki Hiyama… the same guy who played Nishiyama Kankuro.

    I know he played other notable roles… like Gai Shishioh or Ikkaku Madarame, but for some reason I keep hoping Viral to say things like “MESAKU DENSHA!!” and “nya”.

  16. >>“Way earlier?” I don’t know. 30 seconds really isn’t even enough time to microwave a burrito.

    I understand your response to this but maybe in his mind the awesome episode just went by so fast that the scar on the face of Lucky Star felt like it came too fast. I’m still waiting for Lucky Channels’ poor excuse for humor to make me even smile. Can’t we just have our 2-3 more minutes of the actual show instead?

  17. You can solo in FFXI? o_o

  18. Oh, and as for “obscure” manga / anime to check out, I recomend Hunter x Hunter. It was my fave series for a long time. It’s very classic shounen-y, but Yoshihiro Togashi does a good job with it. For anyone who enjoyed Yuu Yuu Hakusho, they should enjoy this. At the very least, I like the in-depth “aura” system bulit into the story. It was the first anime/manga that actually tried to plausably explain some of the insane things they do, and alot of it makes sense.

    You can find out more, here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hunter_%C3%97_Hunter

  19. Where was the Maria pool scene in Hayate…

  20. @Griffin

    >> On the topic of classic literature, lately I’ve been thinking that the greatest tsundere character of all time just might be Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice. Seriously, think about it.

    maybe that’s why tsunderes are all gaijin-styled? (counting right now…)

  21. > “one Maria bath scene an episode”
    Yes please!

    Regarding Final Fantasies, my favorite must be XII. The reason is, as much as the plot, the way they managed to reinvent many aspects of RPGs for it. Incidentally, my introduction to the series was VII, which I still hold – along with Xenogears – in special regard. In general I’ve been rpetty pleased with every FF except IX. I tried to get into VI when the PS1 version was released but… it still sits unfinished on my shelf. There’s too much throwback into the old days, like grinding levels for the sake of progress. Both X and XII managed to craft their progress in a way I never needed to go back and level up to tackle the next challenge.

    > “H-how on Earth can Yoko be 14?! She looks so damn mature.”
    This revelation caused more than one USO DA!!! on 4chan. She’s even more developed than our Evangelion pilots. Maybe Gainax just gets their lulz from messing with our minds…

    > “Love to hear some feedback on obscure or less popular manga recommendations from the readers.”
    Seems nobody has tackled this one yet. So, to name some less known mangas that I’ve really liked… I’m not sure what the current popularity of Tsutomu Nihei is, so I’ll give a quick prop to his Blame! here; he is my #1 favorite. I’m also enjoying Cheeky Angel (Tenshi na Konamaiki), Planetes and Kamunagara. I also enjoyed Island, if we’re counting manhwa.

    On the unlicensed side, I must mention Dogs (by Miwa Shirou), Shin Angyo Onshi (though I’m not sure if it counts as ‘less popular’), Dorohedoro, Haru yo Koi (mature readers warning), Honeymoon Salad (mature readers warning again), Red Eyes, Bamboo Blade and what little has been translated of Forget Me Not. I suppose I should also mention Nodame Cantabile which I discovered shortly before it was licensed, though I’m sure the anime has made it pretty popular now.

  22. What’s ‘Lesi-ban’? Sounds like homo repellant.

  23. >>>Beatrice would be the equivalent of Louise wailing on Saito with a horse whip. Luckily, Benedick’s got more of a spine than Saito.

    I thought Beatrice would be more of a Rin Tohsaka since she can actually match Benedick’s Kyon-class wit (which unlike Kyon, he actually voices) instead of just being wrathful.

    The interesting thing would be to see two sarcastic characters go head to head in anime, which to my knowledge, has never occurred before.

  24. Uwaaa, a post of mine actually got mentioned by Jason. Thats a first for me ^^.

    As far as what Konata plays…*gasp* *Trys to create “Konata Izumi” in Guildwars.* Damn nevermind, taken already >.

  25. Dear Jason.
    This clip with Mai, Sayuri and The-Dude-that-chose-Ayu made my day. Ive been watching this loop for close to 1 hour now.


  26. All this talk of Lucky Channel coming on earlier and not leaving enough time for the rest of the show gets me thinking about a few things, mostly gift horses and mouths. If someone wants to complain about stuff taking time from the actual show, I’d direct them to the cacophanous OP.

  27. Code Geass does not have a sequel in the works, they will continue with the final “season 1” episodes followed by “season 2” were …

    A) The storyline became even more of a trainwheck.
    B) Sunrise writers actually manage to dig themselves out of the hole.
    C) Its NGE all over again.

  28. You know, this was a pretty good week for anime as far as I saw. Nagaraste featured “a slight bit more” fanservice (though after reading from volume 1-9 I must say that it IS quite inferior to the manga, especially since none of the many MILFs have been introduced yet, Hayate had winking Mara + blushing lolis ahoy, Gurren Lagaan gets a HUGE boost in animation quality, and Lucky Star 6 is hilarious.

  29. You are not ready for this, no matter how hardened your heart and soul have become:


  30. I’ve seen worse.

  31. >> Code Geass has maybe a sequel in the works… because… you know… the original was so awesome and ass-kicking…

    Does this mean that in true Sunrise fashion we’ll get Suzaku going around being angsty and listening to recordings of Euphie on his cell? Also, their relationship did last about as long as Shinn and Stella’s, so will Suzaku skip towards his wet-nurse-relationship selection? Wait, considering the valid candidates remaining… OH SHI…

  32. I want to be quoted too…

    However you slice, It’s still truly one’s own taste. I guess you like your shows lighter than black, lol.

    Murder princess is pretty fun. Especially with polls like yours going through people’s heads…

  33. @12. Charybdis can and has been solo’d, by several people in fact. >.>

    The most popular being Avesta, some RDM. He went with some -physical/defense build and BLU sub (cocoon), and fought it straight up with minimal kiting.

    Other RDMs have solo’d using bind/nuke kiting.

    As far as I know, only job to do it solo has been RDM though…

    As for duo, RDM + any decent evasive melee. NIN, THF, MNK fit the bill. :p

  34. Yes, I’m quite familiar with the sheer awesomeness of Avesta and his many amazing solo exploits, but I quit a while back, so I probably didn’t hear about his utilizing a BLU subjob for defense build. I didn’t play too longer after the release of ToAU.

    I was also thinking, how liberally are we able to interpret “solo” and “epic sword”? Could it be as simple as “soloing” a Curtana for spawning Brigandish Blade?

  35. lol soloing Curtana… that may very well be it >.>

    and it’s not like it can’t just be a bit of sarcastic fun-poking. :p

  36. Heh well in Haruhi’s case they had Bunny girls and a combat waitress, at least I didn’t feel like I was thrown into the middle of a complicated movie or something.. now excuse me while I loop Motteke SailorFuku, it’s really frying my brains

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