So, Izetta the Last Witch stands out as an example of a well done mahou shoujo story done in a semi-historical context. I close the year by talking about a mahou shoujo that’s a bit wild, surreal but still has a strong emotional core similar to Izetta. And yet, it got overlooked a bit during the course of its initial broadcast run (airing in the same season as ‘critical darling’ Yuri on Ice didn’t help matters) but I feel it deserves another look…….
You, know, just as Evangelion has cast a long shadow over the mecha genre that is still felt to the present, I feel that Madoka has done the same when it comes to magical girl shows. Granted the genre has been buoyed recently thanks in part to the Sailor Moon revival and Precure (the Sentai of Mahou Shoujo if you will), but Madoka has set up the genre to dare trying to go ‘grim-dark’. Aside from perhaps Yuki Yuna is a Hero and a few others which managed to overcome the darkness, other magical girl shows (Daybreak Illusion and Magical Girl Raising Project) delight in the darker and dirtier aspects of storytelling with mixed results often leaving me with a bit of a sour taste in my mouth. Fortunately, there are two that came out in the same season that give me some hope in the genre which I will cover for the remaining slots this year. First up…….
Well, well, it being October means one thing for me and the blog: the annual Halloween review. Of course, this year I have reached perhaps the limit of titles that are at least appropriate for this most spooky of holidays. In fact, this review was one that I had planned to do a year or two ago, but I kept putting it off hoping I wouldn’t have to come to this one. But eh life can throw you a curve ball and thus we come to this…..
Well, I have to say I didn’t quite plan this review to come out in the wake of such news. Apparently, the Raildex franchise is making a return with a third season of the Index storyline. Now I am not sure I will check it personally as I found the first season didn’t really engage me that much, but yeah fans of Index should be pleased with the news. In the meanwhile, I shall touch upon the previous season of the franchise and the follow-up to a review I did this past spring…….
Now, well there’s always a mix of excitement and danger to the blind buy purchase. Sure, one might get a dud or an awful time (my early reviews are testament) but I find it to be a great learning experience when it comes to media consumption. It allows for a greater sense of satisfaction when you find a hidden gem or a pleasant surprise. Especially when, you come across a show that at first just seems a bit hum-ho but turns out to be something more than that initial impression….
While I have mentioned that my two favorite genres of anime are fantasy and science fiction, there’s a third that fascinates me greatly: historical fiction. Be it the ancient civilizations of yore or the more recent calamities in the world, history has always fascinated me and it has been interesting seeing how writers can work in their own personal (if often fictional) stories in the vast tapestry of the human experience. Now being an American, most of the historical fiction I have read has been about either the American Revolution and the later Civil War or one of the many watershed moments in the 20th Century (World Wars, 1960s, etc.). For anime, historical fiction tends towards the Shogun Era (Ninja Girl and Samurai Master), the Meiji Era (Rurouni Kenshin) or World War II (The Wind Rises and Grave of the Fireflies). It is that last great historical event that forms the backdrop of this review’s subject matter.
So, yeah, this is a bit late. I was planning to release this last week but then I ended up going out of town to visit my folks for part of Memorial Day week. But anyway, this will be now a June review and my last one before the summer break for me. I figure that despite the delay, I would still make up for it with a June review anyway. Alright, on with the show…..