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Showing content with the highest reputation since 04/14/20 in Blog Entries

  1. 1 point
    Review: Goblin Slayer (Non-Spoilery) Season Aired: Fall 2018 - 12 episodes MAL Link: Goblin Slayer Watch it at: Kawaiifu Review: In fantasy games, goblins are often a low level monster that present an early challenge to players, but are rarely seen again beyond the very early game. They are good for some early experience, but players typically have no interest in goblins once better options are available. I mean, I personally don't certainly. I'm into better, sexier monsters that have better loot. But I digress. This show recognizes that goblins are a very early game creature and embraces that stereotype. Just like in fantasy games, this show has a whole cast of high level adventurers and none of them want to bother themselves with goblins. It perfectly captures goblin's place as the lowest rung of the monster hierarchy. And yet, goblins are still a nuisance and a constant threat to humanity. What to do? Enter the Goblin Slayer. The Plot in a Nutshell: The show is about a warrior who is obsessive about killing goblins. There is, naturally, a tragic backstory involved which left the main character deeply scarred and with an unquenchable desire for vengeance. The story opens with an absolutely brutal first episode that puts the viewer on notice that goblins are not to be trifled with. Once that bit of world building is established, the Goblin Slayer concerns itself with the main character moving from one goblin related problem to the next. Along the way, he is joined by other adventurers who have shared goals. The show is somewhat episodic and doesn't have a linear plot line. Different adventures are broken up into episode blocks. It does have a very satisfying no-hold-barred conclusion. My Verdict: Goblin Slayer is a bloody violent fantasy romp. The action, adventure and Dungeons and Dragons type callbacks are the draw here. For the most part, the characters in the show are served to you fully baked. There are no character arcs to speak of besides, perhaps, that of the young priestess character that follows the Goblin Slayer around. She is probably intended to be the audience surrogate and provides some gentle sanity to balance out the main character's obsessive violence. The main character does see a bit of development, but it's subtle and around the edges. Goblin Slayer never apologizes for what it is: 12 blood soaked episodes about how to make goblins dead. And, because of how brutal the first episode is, you will likely be all for their often spectacular demise. It is a dark, violent fantasy series and it succeeds admirably within that genre. Score: 3.5 out of 5
  2. 1 point
    Review: My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom! (non-spoilery) Season Aired: Spring 2020 MAL Link: My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom! Watch The Show Link: kawaiifu Review: This show adds to the ever growing list of "Isekai" Anime that have been released over the last few years. Isekai is a genre that revolves around a normal person from Earth being transported to, reborn or otherwise trapped in a parallel universe or fantasy world. Usually, the fantasy world that the protagonist is transported to is based on a video game that they are playing at the time. That is, they become their game character in a reality that is based on that game. Now, I have a soft spot for Isekai shows because I get all the game references. It turns out that all those years I spent playing World of Warcraft come in handy when viewing Isekai Anime shows. This one, however, was a curve-ball for me because it revolves around a genre of games I don't ever play: Romance and Dating Simulations. Further, the protagonist is put into the role of the villain of the game. That is quite unusual. Typically, the main character enters the fantasy world as a hero. I was intrigued by the concept from the start. The Plot in a Nutshell: The female protagonist is transported to a world based on a romance game she is playing. There, she assumes the role of the games villainess, Katarina Claes. She quickly figures out what is going on and realizes that she's in deep trouble. She is the main villain in the story and every ending for Katarina Claes in these romance stories is bad. Some endings are simply terrible while others are very fatal. The show then deals with her gambits to avoid each bad ending and her interactions with the cast of characters inhabiting the romance story - including the actual game heroine. To her advantage, she appears in-world as the child Katarina Claes. So she has some years to put events in motion that will derail the natural arc of her villainess trajectory. My Verdict: This take on the Isekai genre is novel and I was on board to see how she was going to avoid her bad endings. The cast of characters is colorful and, while each does inhabit a certain romance character archetype, they are well presented with good personalities and motivations. Katarina Claes must navigate the traps each romantic archetype presents, so it's fine that we understand that the characters will not stray too far outside their archetype box. The art was colorful, well animated and provided some sumptuous costuming and locations, as one might expect from romance fantasy. The series started strong, however it did not finish quite as strong. It could have benefited by having more intrigue and by having escape from the bad endings a bit more challenging overall. The show does throw in a surprise at the end which helps make things a little more harrowing for Katarina Claes, and therefore more satisfying. I was engaged start to finish, though. I did not consider dropping the show. SCORE: 3.5 out of 5
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