Thoughts on Winter Anime Season 2014

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Konbanwa!^^/

Sadly, the winter season for Anime, has more or less ended. I promised myself that I would only watch a few… somehow I started to watch more and I ended up watching 10! XD! How did that happen? Anyway, I figured I’d share my thoughts with you.

Contents:

  •          Wonder Momo
  •          Maken-Ki! Two
  •          SoniAni: Super Sonico the Animation
  •          Onee-Chan ga Kita
  •          Nisekoi: False Love
  •          No-Rin
  •          Strike the Blood
  •          Witch Craft Works
  •          D-Frag

Here we go…

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WONDER MOMO

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Haha, Wonder Momo… this has been getting critical reviews.

For those who don’t know, Wonder Momo used to be an arcade game back in the 1980’s. This year they decided to make an ONA (which is basically an anime production that you can only watch online) based on the character’s daughter…she is also called Wonder Momo. XD

I can understand why this is far from popular. The storyline, music, voices and characters design are all rather cheesy. The seiyuu for Wonder Momo has especially been criticised as it’s been said that she doesn’t really believe in her character. Personally, I think it’s down to the actor’s lack of experience. It’s her first ever role in an anime so she probably didn’t get the best out of it as she would have liked.

I did wonder at times (no pun intended ;-)) if perhaps the production crew deliberately made this cheesy? It certainly has a lot of elements of retro stuff but set in the modern age. So perhaps, they went OTT on certain things?

In any case this show was worth the 5 minutes of my time as it gave me many, many chuckles… perhaps for the wrong reasons but I still feel that it was worth watching. =D

Rating: Thumbs So-So

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I didn’t want to give this a thumb’s down but I didn’t want to give this a thumb’s up either as it didn’t meet my requirements for either rating. =D

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MAKEN-KI! TWO

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I quite enjoyed the first season of Maken-Ki and I enjoyed the battles, characters and the bonds between the cast. In season two I was expecting cheeky moments but there were a lot more than just little cheeky moments, some parts were just borderline rude. XD

I have a big hunch, that everything that happened in this sequel, or at least 90%, was Anime only. I.E., it was mostly filler that didn’t take any content from the original manga. I don’t know why this is but even though this is a sequel it didn’t really feel like the story continued from the first season. It felt more like the production crew were focusing more on the visual entertainment rather than the story itself. I don’t really have any problems with that but I do feel that this sequel show missed out on a good story.

Maybe there wasn’t enough to go by from the manga plot so the anime production decided to create more of their own story in the world of Maken-Ki!?

Personally I would have focused more on Take’s character development. A lot of supporting characters did get their time to shine though so that is one good aspect. I grew fonder of Aki especially, not because of her good looks but I just found her overall character to be very cute. She should be a lot more experienced in love but yet she is very innocent.

Rating: Thumbs So-So

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I didn’t enjoy this as much as the first season but I still found it watchable.

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SONIANI: SUPER SONICO THE ANIMATION

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I’ve been waiting for this to be turned into an anime for years and my wish came true in 2014. =D

A good number of people on the internet have been highly critical of this anime. It is unfortunate to see but really I don’t believe it’s so bad that it deserves to be labelled as “Worse anime of this season”. Granted it’s not an intense story like Attack on Titan or Monogatari Second Season but it’s far from terrible, at least in my opinion.

The whole point of this Anime is to show what sort of shenanigans Super Sonico gets up to in her daily life. It shows the sort of people she hangs out with, her modelling career and performing rock. It had all those elements with mild fanservice and has little to no drama. Sonico is given the persona of a fairly shy girl who is rather ditzy, fun-loving and not rude in the slightest.

So, when I bear all of this in mind, it’s actually a very relaxing and down to earth anime. When I picture Sonico I picture her as a very polite rather timid girl, so, I feel that her persona was right on the mark. Granted, she’s cute, but I find a character more attractive if they have a nice and/or funny personality.

My favourite parts of the show were when she interacted with her bandmates, especially Suzu, she definitely has personality. She rocks that nurse’s outfit. 😉

My Rating: One thumb’s up.

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Watching the life of a cute and polite girl with little to no drama can be very soothing, especially if you don’t raise your expectations too high.^^/

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ONEE-CHAN GA KITA

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This was another short anime that was worth five minutes of my time.

The art style is very cute and I liked Ichika’s character design, especially her mouth. XD She is quite a sweet character. She is one of those half-sibling anime characters who have a bit of a complex towards their half-brother.

Very light and humorous, I enjoyed seeing the consequences whenever Ichika caused trouble or inconvenience for Tomo. Since some of the themes reminds me of Kiss x Sis I expected Tomo to be a lot more like Keita. I personally didn’t see any traits or similarities at all. In fact, I actually think Tomo treats Ichika nicer then Keita does with his sisters.

Nice set of characters too but my favourite part of the show is the character’s design and Ichika.

Rating: One thumb’s up.

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NISEKOI: FALSE LOVE

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This series spans up to 20 episodes and will carry on and finish into the spring season of Anime. So far 12 episodes have been aired. I decided to share my views on this as to what I thought about it so far…

It’s very funny with a good storyline. I learned about Nisekoi after VizMedia announced that they licensed it. I noticed these two girls on the front cover with this friendly looking chap…Both Kirisaki and Onodera are pretty in their own rights. Just by looking at the cover I knew instantly that it was a romantic type with a potential love-triangle dilemma.

Like some anime this show does have many clichés. I.E., two people who get “engaged”, hot-springs fanservice, female on male violence, childhood friendship and the test of courage. A young teen being the adventurous/protector type when they were a toddler is also somewhat a cliché as I’ve seen it quite a bit.

The biggest selling point for me, as well as the unique storyline, is the comedy. I like the slapstick elements and how the characters react when they’re embarrassed or shocked.

I’m also enjoying the suspense of the childhood memories of certain characters…;-) I also don’t know who Raku is connected and isn’t connected with. I can make guesses but I don’t know for certain. I’m enjoying the fact that I can’t make predictions clearly based on what I see.

If I were to predict though then I would say that Raku would eventually get himself into a dilemma where he would have to choose to be with either Onodera or Kirisaki. I would guess that Kirisaki would become Raku’s official partner in the end. I don’t have a clear pairing favourite but I do especially like Onodera and I wouldn’t want to see her get heart-broken.^^’

Regardless of it all, I’m still enjoying the story and enjoying Raku’s relationship with the rest of the ladies of the show. =)

Rating: To be determined.

I don’t think it would be fair to rate an anime show when is half way through the series. So, I’m keeping my thumbs in my pocket until the end.^^

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NO-RIN

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This is so silly, but, so funny at the same time. XD

This wasn’t really on my watch list but I noticed that the producers of this show also produced Non Non Biyori, so I decided to give this a watch.

It’s quite refreshing that they based the setting of the school in a horticultural environment. I also like how different Ringo is as a student compared to her days as an idol.

It’s cringing funny and random funny. Becky, the teacher, is especially hilarious.

It does have its serious points though and I enjoyed them just as a much as the funny moments. I liked the love triangle between Minori, Ringo and Kosaka (albeit, some of it is one-sided!) Minori is especially funny; she is very perverted and fun-loving. I’m not sure about anyone else but I thought she looked cute when she put on weight and grew fat! XD!

The openings and ending songs are lovely on the ears and I would recommend you have a  listen. ^^/

Rating: Two Thumbs-Up

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A very funny anime with a lot of random, self-aware, quirky and slapstick humour.^^/

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STRIKE THE BLOOD

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I was able to connect with this story just fine.

I found that I couldn’t watch this on a weekly basis, so I watched this whenever I was in the right frame of mind for it. I think it’s because I found parts of it a little complicated to understand, so, I had to watch it when my mind was 100% focused and relaxed. =)

That being said, I think the female characters are beautifully designed and Koujou is one lucky chap. He’s not totally clueless either. He’s not in the same league as Keima Katsuragi but he’s not so daft that he doesn’t get “invitations” so to speak. Wink, wink. 😉

The outcome of the fights and conclusions weren’t as predictable as I first thought. All the battles were intense and I found myself engaged. As well as looking pretty all the girls had special abilities of their own. I liked La Folia’s gun, Sayaka’s archery weapon thing and Yukina’s… spear? Whatever it is it’s a kickass weapon – very shiny and looks like it can do one heck of a lot of damage. I liked Koujou’s familiars too, reminds me a little bit of Godou from Campione! Whenever he uses mystical beast type creatures.^^

The way Koujou nibbles on Yukina’s neck… I feel like Yukina deserves a pay rise or a bigger role for being Koujou’s blood-doner. XD!

I get mixed feelings for Yukina sometimes. For the most part, I like her but sometimes I shake my head when she interrupts Koujou’s potential “moments”.

Those are just little snippets about Yukina I get disappointed with.

Rating: Two Thumbs-Up

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WITCH CRAFT WORKS

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Without a doubt this is my favourite Anime from this season, apart from perhaps D-Frag.

I would say that this is my kind of anime. I suppose I find the relationship between a meek male and an emotionless but powerful female, quite charming. I discovered this after watching the OP, and I decided to give it a try.

I do like girls like Sayaka as I do have a bit of a thing for girls who are expressionless. I think it’s because they show affection through their actions and words, but not necessarily through their facial expressions. She reminds me a little bit of Ikaros from Heaven’s Lost Property and HItagi Senjougahara from the Monogatari series.

I like the characters, the theme, the magical settings and the humour. Those certain five Tower Witches, led by Tanpopo, are just comedy gold. I just can’t take them seriously. Every time they make an appearance I just laugh. XD They’re villains but they’re completely useless. Sayaka doesn’t even take them seriously and can KO them even without the use of magic. Their song at the end is very catchy and quirky. It’s also the reason why I can’t take those characters seriously.

Speaking of Tower Witches, I really like Mei Menowa’s voice. I can’t really describe it, it’s like a grown up deep seductive type of voice. Whatever it is, it’s certainly refreshing and nice to listen to.

One of the best points is how the production crew keep switching from the main storyline to something random like Tanpopo playing cards with Medusa. I like those random moments. XD In episode 2, it took me a few good re-watches to notice those little cameos that Kasumi, Honoka’s sister made. Very funny indeed!

All the characters are different too, especially the designs. I love different types of clothes and eyes that girls have, and Witch Craft Works certainly has plenty of those!

Rating: Two Thumb’s Up

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Definitely one of my favourites from this year so far and I really like Sayaka and her relationship with Takamiya. I’m delighted that I found out that the Vertical Publishers have officially licensed the rights to sell Witch Craft Works in manga form. A good reason to look forward to October as that is when it’s released. =D

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D-FRAG

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It’s one of those comedies that is very self-aware and often takes the mickey out of itself.

I literally laughed at every single episode, and if something makes me laugh then I love it. =D Because I enjoyed this Anime very, very much I’m going to be as concise as possible… if it’s possible that is. XD!

It reminds of the Simpsons in the respect of how the extras/random characters pop up and make a significant contribution.

Kenji is certainly a good character with an interesting twist; he claims to be a “delinquent”. 😉 Usually delinquents are rebels who pretend to be good but it’s quite the reverse in this case. Kenji wants to be a delinquent but isn’t, far from it in fact. How many delinquents do you know who go to school but have their cute little sisters prepare his bentos?

One moment he goes from being a “rebel” to being surrounded by eccentric girls who are, ironically, stronger and more ferocious then him.

Some of the male characters have some fetishes…I can’t help but to laugh at the hilarious consequences of their fetish situations. XD!

All the characters are very cool and I especially think that all the female characters are very likable. They’re all very different, funny and charming in their own way. Even the extras play their parts very well. I genuinely like all the characters but I especially like Funabori and Takao.^^/

I feel like I could go on forever, so for now, I’m going to stop talking and start rating…

Rating: Two Thumb’s Up.

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If I had three hands then I would have given this Anime a Three Thumb’s Up! =) I have heard that an OVA starring Kenji, Nao (Kenji’s little sister) and Sakura will be released this year. Seven Seas are also releasing the Manga in July. I’m very much looking forward to both! =D

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Hope you enjoyed the read; this is of course just my opinion.

I look forward to hearing your opinion on this season’s Anime. =D

Sayonara.^^/

Ryan

Sport Relief 2014

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Monday Tidings!

 

I watched Sport Relief 2014 on Friday evening (instead of the usual Marvel: Agents of Shield) and I quite enjoyed it.

 

It’s very good that national events like Red Nose Day, Children in Need and Sport Relief spread awareness of various issues and problems that certain people or a group of people have to endure.

 

I find that I can’t sit and watch something for hours on end so I kept on nipping in and out the room whilst Sport Relief was on. I did the same thing when the London Olympics were on TV and when the Royal Wedding was on.TV.

 

I have quite a few favourite parts of the show, including the singing trio between Kylie, Jason and David Walliams. I was expecting Jason Donovan to reunite with Kylie but I didn’t expect David to become part of the act. So, it ended up in a love triangle – ish. I’m not sure what that was but it was still funny regardless!

 

I enjoyed the sketch between Gary Lineker and Gary Barlow. The Anthem for England for this year’s world cup is certainly interesting. It’s a nice song and the female vocalists sound good with the song.  Although in my opinion, I don’t feel an England Anthem vibe from that song. To me it’s just a Take That cover… probably because it is a Take That cover. XD! I’m not sure. I feel that when it comes to England Anthems they should be more of a chant then a song, and this year’s anthem is more of a song then a chant. By national chants/anthems I’m referring to anthems like Back Home, Vindaloo and Three Lions. Regardless I still think it’s a nice song and it’s nice to listen to. =)

 

My favourite sketch of the night though- Only Fools and Horses with David Beckham. =) I bet the good folks at the BBC deliberately didn’t announce a time for the sketch and left it until late so that we’d keep on watching. XD

 

When I first heard that Only Fools was coming back for a short sketch I had mixed views on this… On one hand it’s great to see Del Boy and Rodney on our screens again but on the other hand it can hinder Only Fools’ reputation if it keeps coming back with no fresh material. That’s the danger when comedy sitcoms make a comeback, it can either do a lot of good or a lot of damage.

 

My thoughts after the Only Fools sketch…I surprisingly enjoyed it.

 

Del Boy and Rodney were no different now (apart from looking a bit older) then they were 10 or perhaps 15 years ago. Del Boy did his wheeling and dealing and Rodney was coming up short. Rodney was really funny when he wore those golden boxer briefs. XD

 

It had a mixture of past references and new material in this sketch, I.E., what happened to Rodney when he was young. This sort of banter is one of the greatest strengths in Only Fools.^^ To top it off David Beckham was part of the mix. I liked it how he got into the banter and how he told Rodney to “Shut up you tart”. Rather funny…

 

And Rodney doing that cat-walk, I literally cackled on the floor. I especially chuckled when David Beckham fell over… that was obviously an ode to the part when Del Boy fell over in the episode “Yuppy Love.”

 

It was nice to see Del Boy and Rodney. They were funny and David Beckham looked like he belonged in the hustle and bustle of Peckham. I give this… two thumbs up!

 

Now I’m going to go out for a walk on this lovely spring day.

 

Namaste.^^/

Ryan.

Negativity to Positivity

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Good day!^^/

I consider myself to be a very positive person as I naturally look at things on the bright side rather than on the bleak side.

But, like most human beings, I do have my fed-up moments. Sometimes it stems from lack of sleep, sometimes it stems from other sources. Naturally, when one is thinking negative, your mind will play tricks on you. You remember the past times when someone has said something that cheesed you off. Or, you anticipate scenarios that may happen and how you would deal them and make yourself heard. But in reality, if that situation did occur, you would actually be completely different. Because, at the end of the day, imagination is one thing but reality is something different.

That’s at least how I think whenever I think negative. Stress, anxiety and uncertainty can come easily for an Autistic person since it’s the littlest things that can be actually the biggest things. I’m no exception. I’m positive but I do have my moments. I especially don’t like sudden visitors or getting invited out on an impromptu outing. By all means I handle these situations a lot better than I did in the past but my Autistic side does play mind-games with me, a lot.

This week has especially been unlucky for me.

This doesn’t really involve me per se but I am quite saddened by the sacking of Chris Powell from Chartlon Athletic. I’ve supported Charlton since I was 9 years old and I remember him from his playing days at Charlton. I got an autograph from him once but that’s another story. Charlton reached the Quarter finals and played Sheffield United. Unfortunately they lost but all credit to Sheffield United; they showed that they belong in the FA Cup. I was disappointed with the loss but I was just happy that they reached so far in the FA Cup because we’ve always been unlucky when it came to cup competitions.

During Badminton this week, I go every Monday, a shuttlecock landed on one part of the climbing frame. I offered myself as leverage for my brother, but he somehow mistimed his jump and landed on my back in a squat position, it was like a knight landing on a horse from a castle. XD With a lot of willpower I managed to jump at a good height and retrieve the shuttle cock, but then came the more challenging prospect…getting down! I got down safely (eventually) but had very sore arms, a sore back and a twisted hip (don’t ask how that happened, I don’t even know myself. XD)

Over the course of the days I could barely walk. Then came the part where I was making everyone a cup of tea…I went in the cupboard to look for something when something fell out of the cupboard and went straight into my drink but completely avoided both my parents’ cups! XD!

However, all is not lost. I have a lot of techniques for wiping the negativity from my mind. I may think negative thoughts but luckily I’m able to guide them out of my head and into the bin. =)

Technique One: Don’t think about the thing that’s in your head.

You’ve probably heard this many times. I agree, it is easier said than done, especially when you’re wound up and/or upset. But, it actually isn’t all that difficult, it’s much simpler then you think. What I do is, instead of wiping it from my head I just replace it with something that I enjoy and/or love. That way, I grow positive vibes inside my stomach and whatever was making me mad before has long since flushed down the toilet. 😉

Technique Two: Yoga

A lot of people, who are not familiar with Yoga, often say “Oh, it’s just about being bendy!” Yes, yoga does give you more core strength and enables you to bend like a professional contortionist but it’s much more than being “bendy.” Yoga is all about finding inner peace.

I always come away from Yoga feeling nothing but calm and positivite. Doing certain stretches, postures and tranquil visualisations inside my head makes me feel like I’m releasing a bunch of negative energy in one go. Likewise I found that twisting my hips and stretching my body makes me feel relaxed and happy. They say that your emotions lie within your hips and waist and I believe this is true. I mostly exercise my hips and waist but I always end up happy. It sends happy vibes to my head and to my chest.^^/

Technique Three: If you can’t change it, why worry

If something is out of my hands, I just don’t really bother worrying. If something can’t be done, it can’t be done. There is no point in fretting over things that are out of my control. Like when Chris Powell got sacked from Charlton. I’m sad about that but being sad won’t change the fact that Powell is no longer their manager. So, I just remind myself how much he has done for the club. And no matter what happens to Charlton, even if they get relegated to the Conference South, I will still support them always. =)

Technique Four: Talking

Venting out your feelings, crying and whatever is also helpful. Nothing good comes from when you’re bottling up negative energy. If you need to release it and cry then cry. I don’t really need to cry since I don’t get overly emotional about things but I do need to talk. I need to talk to clear my head and to express my anxiety. Sometimes you can give the best advice and lend an ear, but like most humans, you will ultimately need to be given advice and have someone to lend an ear for you. It doesn’t make you a hypocrite, it means that you give awesome advice but you’re still a human being.

Technique Five: Focus on things that you enjoy.

So, the things that I enjoy…

  • Writing my stories since I’m expressing my imagination
  • Drawing. I like to draw my character but I also like to draw fanart.
  • Watching Anime like Heaven’s Lost Property, Non Non Biyori or Is This a Zombie?
  • Read manga like Monster Musume
  • Play games like Mario, Worms
  • Listening to music, mostly the Non Non Biyori soundtrack.
  • Listening to the wind and rain
  • Yoga, I do Yoga poses and Capoeira moves every day, if not, every other day
  • Watching plenty of comedy, like Only Fools and Horses and Alan Partridge
  • Watching films like Iron Man, Man of Steel and Rush Hour
  • Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends
  • Photography. I love taking photos of nature, birds, people’s shadows and unusual perspectives.
  • Talking with my family and friends. I mostly like to hear about their day rather than speaking about my day
  • Having a nice long bath and washing my hair
  • Fresh orange juice and water…it’s odd but drinking cool drinks can make me feel very energetic whereas hot drinks can make me feel tranquilised.

 

Technique Six: Sleep

It helps clear your mind and recovers your body from fatigue.

The point I’m trying to make is that you should apply whatever technique suits you in order to rid yourself of negative thoughts. I have plenty of ways and I sincerely hope you enjoyed reading about what techniques I apply. =D!

Have a Good Weekend everyone,

Namaste. ^^/

Ryan

Monster Musume Volume One Review

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Last week I wrote a blog about how I discovered Monster Musume and why it became one of my all-time favourites. =D In that very same blog I mentioned that I was going to write a review of it. Fast forward one week and I’m very excited to share my thoughts. =D

CONTENTS

1. Summary of the Plot…in my own words!

1.1 Plot

1.2 Themes/Genre

2. Self-Awareness

3. Art

4. Characters

4.1. Kimihito Kurusu

4.2. Miia

4.3. Ms. Smith

4.4. Papi

4.5. Centorea “Cerea” Shianus

5. Constructive Criticism

6. Voice Interpretation

7. Behind the Author

8. Bibliography

9. Conclusion

1. SUMMARY OF THE PLOT…IN MY OWN WORDS!

It came to light many years ago that hybrid species, liminals, exist in the same world as humankind. In order to reach a truce and understanding with these hybrid species the world government created the Interspecies Cultural Exchange Accord. This accord is a homestay programme where a monster-girl would live as a guest with a human host to accustom and adapt to human society.

Kimihito Kurusu becomes an involuntary “volunteer” and ends up being a host for monster-girls. His first resident was Miia the Lamia, his second was Papi the Harpy, and the third was Centorea “Cerea” Shianus. It’s imperative for Kimihito to keep his libido in check since intercourse and breeding between humans and liminals are considered forbidden. How will he cope? Does he give into his natural urges? Read this to find out! =D

1.1. PLOT

I honestly didn’t think there was going to be much plot since it’s just a slice of life story involving monster-girls adapting to human society. But by the end of the volume, we all learned the story’s plot- marriage. Now, everyone is fighting for the affection and attention of Kimihito.

The underlining plot, or as I call it, the ‘hidden’ plot is all about acceptance and equality. Sure, the visuals are enticing but there is more to the story then just cheeky innuendoes and illustrations. The monster-girls live in Japan on this special accord programme to see if they can integrate into human society and blend in with no problems.

Fortunately for girls like Miia, Cerea and Papi they’re settling in very well because of Kimihito. They maybe monster-girls/Liminals but they’re just normal human girls like well…human girls! That’s the other thing. Liminals is obviously a pun from animals but I wonder what the ‘Li’ part means?

Ahem-

Kimihito made a huge speech at the end and told his residents that they should be ‘themselves’ since they’re like a family and all family members need to be themselves. It is somewhat cheesy but it doesn’t take away from the fact that that was a very heart-warming moment.^^’ Another heart-warming moment came when Kimihito said that he sees Miia as a girl before he sees her as a lamia.^^’

1.2. THEMES/GENRE

  • Comedy
  • Ecchi
  • Fantasy
  • Harem
  • Mature
  • Romance
  • Seinen
  • Slice of Life

2. SELF-AWARENESS

One of the things I noticed after finishing the volume for the first time, was how self-aware the manga is. There are many puns in the dialogue that associate with certain characters. E.g., Miia mentioned to Cerea that she was “galloping away” because Cerea is a centaur. And Miia said to Papi that she’ll make her into “chicken noodle soup” after they were horse-playing. XD!

This manga, has many clichés. One of those cliché, a common one in comedy, is the whole female-on-male violence. Why do the ladies hit the gents? There are several reasons for this. It can be due to;

  • Embarrassment
  • Jealously
  • Surprise
  • Anger

One may wonder why there’s a lot of comedy that include female-on-male violence. I have a theory about this but I intend to talk about that in another blog since I just want to focus on this review for now. =D

Whilst Monster Musume has this female-on-male violence, it’s not necessarily done in a deliberate manner. Whenever Kimihito is on the receiving end of a hit, it is accidental. It’s always accidental.

To be honest, this is my kind of comedy. It’s the sort of thing you see in an episode of the Simpsons. Homer will make a statement how he would never do something, then literally contradicts his words a second later. XD! If this is applied correctly then it can be very funny, and just as I find those moments in the Simpsons funny, I found this moment in Monster Musume funny!

3. ART

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The art, in my opinion, is very pleasant on the eye. Okayado does a great job with the design of the characters, especially when it comes to facial expressions and clothing.

It probably won’t win the art of the year award but it has a style and the style is very good. Okayado has cemented his own style of drawing. I’m confident that his style will definitely be worldly recognised very soon. =)

4. CHARACTERS

4.1. Kimihito Kurusu

I think he’s really cool. He’s not your run-of-the-mill male protagonist, at least not in this kind of story.  In this kind of story the main male characters are depicted as perverted, clueless or slightly cowardly. So far, Kimihito hasn’t shown any of these traits.

He’s manly and interested in a girl’s body by all accounts but he can control himself which is very admirable considering he’s a young man going through adolescence.^^/

Kimihito is fully aware of how Miia feels for him. This is very unusual, because most young male characters seem oblivious to the signs of love.  It seems however,that he doesn’t mind Miia fancying him. Why would he? I certainly wouldn’t! =)

Most of the time he acts like a house-broker, or as I call people like him, a modern man. I believe the whole modern men trend started in the 1990’s. I’m happy to say that there are quite a lot of modern men in Anime/Manga as well, I’m talking about male protagonists like Ryuushi from Toradora, Kodaka from Haganai: I Don’t Have Many Friends, Eita from Oregairu and Ayumu from Is This a Zombie? Kimihito is now one of the latest modern men in the manga world. =D

I do feel sorry for him though. Whenever he gets hurt at Miia’s expenses (albeit accidentally) he never gets cross with her and he never sells her out to the Coordinator, Ms Smith. =) Ms Smith, I suspect, does take advantage of his good nature. That’s why she keeps coming over to his house uninvited. XD Really, she is far from fit to become the coordinator. Haha.

4.2. Miia

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4.2.1. Profile

I think the humour in this story is absolutely brilliant.

I mentioned before about the humour being similar to the Simpsons. For me, the hilarity comes from the cheesy puns and one of the leading characters, Miia. Miia is one of the main reasons why I love this manga. Miia, you may or may not guess, is a pun from ‘lamia.’ 😉

She is a fun and beautiful character. Some of her traits are cliché but she’s also a refreshing type of character. All because she is a Lamia.^^ I find her to be a very versatile character. She can be very cute one minute, sexy the next, jealous the next, awkward the next, and most important of all, extremely funny.

Her design is especially good, particularly her face and the snake part of her body. Because of her personality she’s the type who can pull off any kind of clothes whether it’s general trendy clothes or cosplay. Personally I think she looks good with fashionable clothes. I reckon she’d be good in fashion retail.

One of her best traits, at least in my opinion, is her facial expressions. Whenever she pulls certain comedic expressions I literally laugh out loud. XD Every single expression, from being annoyed, speechless, shy, lustful and touched are all wonderful.^^/ Her loved up/touched mode are especially nice.^^

4.2.2. Debate about Miia

I was part of a discussion on a forum once talking about Miia’s appearance. One user said that by having yellow/snake like eyes she loses her appeal and personality. Because having yellow eyes make her look monstrous and not cute. I respect this view 100% but I also disagree with this 100%.

Granted, girls look stunning with either blue, green, brown or hazel eyes, we all know that and accept that as a fact of life. =D  And yes, having common eyes like blue and hazel are nice, but different coloured eyes is one of the things that make Manga, Manga.

Miia would suit blue eyes but having blue eyes wouldn’t really make her unique, it wouldn’t feel like Miia. Being a half snake is who Miia is. I find her eyes majestic and beautiful.

4.3. Ms. Smith

With a name like Ms. Smith you know she’s got personality. Haha.

Even though she’s in such a high position with the government she is pretty useless. She’s lazy, unreliable and passes her job tasks on to others, i.e., Kimihito. XD She doesn’t mind dissing out the rules but she doesn’t seem the type who will follow the rules herself. I hope we get a chapter dedicated to Ms Smith. I have a feeling there’s more to her then her addiction to caffeine. ^^’

4.4. Papi

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A birdbrain with a lovely and charismatic personality, that’s Papi! XD

In myth culture harpies are considered “birdbrains” and will forget everything after taking three steps, Papi is no exception.

I see her as the very mischievous little sister type. She has a very good heart but she is rather hyperactive. She can’t seem to stay still and constantly runs off, i.e., she kept running off from Miss Smith. XD Sometimes we all do enjoy rebellious type of characters who don’t always obey the rules. For Papi though I would say that it’s more that she doesn’t understand rather than being rebellious for the sake of it.

The funniest part is when she implied that Kimihito was “stupid” for asking her why she took her clothes off to bathe in the fountain. It was ironic because she doesn’t have a clue about society yet she called him “stupid” for “not-knowing” that you take off clothes before you wash yourself. XD

4.5. Centorea “Cerea” Shianus

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What is there not to love about Cerea?

I can understand why some might be turned off by Cerea since she is half human half horse. Personally I don’t see it like this I just think that Cerea is both badass and cute.

She comes from the famous species of centaurs. She has some special privileges because of the fact that she’s a centaur.

Her introduction was most amusing. Bumping into Kimihito, seemed more like a “car crash” according to him. XD!

I think she’s really cool. She knows how to use her weapons. She’s very proud of her race and her abilities and self-confidence is a very good thing. She’s very intelligent but perhaps a little naïve, which is not surprising since integrating into Japan is a learning curve for all monster-girls. She fell in love with Kimihito and has decided that she will serve him.^^

My favourite moment was when she blushed and smiled after Kimihito held her hand.

5. CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM

Hmm, if I was to give this any constructive criticism, and I emphasize ‘if’, it would be the shading in the art.

I say constructive criticism but really it’s more about me noticing the littlest of things. XD! I have the tendency to look at art and study it in great detail, most of the time I do it subconsciously. Because I like to draw I look at art and compare it with either other artist’ work and my very own.

I have noticed that the toning (shadowing) is not always consistent. In some of the pages, like when Papi goes into the fountain, the fountain is covered in dots. My artist’s intuition tells me that those dots, just by the way they are scattered, were actually supposed to be a tone/shadow/shade. This tells me that this was a mistake. I know from experience that if you’re not consistent with the toning, especially in an art programme like MangaStudio, the result will be black dots instead of a toned area.

My next point is more of a niggle than a criticism. It is the scene where Cerea runs to the park with Kimihito, and you see a small Cerea and Kimihito walking in the park. If you look closely on the page you will notice that the trees in the background are actually overlapping Cerea’s face! XD

These little inconsistencies/mistakes hardly matter though. I only noticed these because this is probably the tenth occasion that I have read the whole volume back to back. So, it took me ten goes to actually notice. It doesn’t matter and it certainly doesn’t bother me in the slightest! =D

6. VOICE INTERPRETATION

Like most people I hear certain kinds of voices and tones whenever I read the dialogue of the characters.

Whenever I read Miia’s dialogue I immediately hear Haruka Tomatsu. I think Haruka would do an amazing job as Miia. Undoubtedly she is known for her role as Asuna from Sword Art Online but she also plays one of my favourite Anime characters, Lala from To LOVE-Ru. I see quite a few comparisons between Lala and Miia in the sense of naivety, humour, affection and the tip of her tail being sensitive. Also, Miia sings harmoniously and Haruka’s a talented singer, so, I can picture her as Miia. Kana Asumi I think would also do a decent job as Miia.

Papi, being a harpy, will no doubt have a nice voice. Whenever I read Papi I always hear a harmonious kind of voice with a hint of cheekiness. I described her personality as the mischievous little sister type, so, I think her voice will be slightly high pitched. Ibuki Kido tends to play characters who are little sisters/young cheeky ladies like Akiko from OreAi, Kasumi from GJ-Bu and Yume from Pupa. Other good candidates to portray her voice, in my view, would be Ayane Sakura and Nao Touyama.^^/

Centorea has a truly wonderful personality. For me it screams to be played by Marina Inoue. Marina Inoue is known for playing kickass females who have very soft/cute sides to their personality. A brave and heroic female who will not back down and is not afraid to show her soft side to the man she loves/admires. Of course, Yoko Hikasa also plays these roles well. Look at Houki from Infinite Stratos, Seraphim from Is This a Zombie? and Rias from High School DxD.

For Ms Smith I imagine a lady who is confident, self-assured, mature and sexy. She can boss people around, takes charge when she needs to and becomes very playful. That’s how I imagine her voice to be and the only person who screams to my mind for that role is Eri Kitamura. I think she’ll do a good job for Miss Smith.^^

Kimihito is cool yet uncool. He can be very masculine when the time calls for it but he can also show his sensitive side. XD I’m thinking someone like…Ryota Ohsaka perhaps? He’s been getting a lot of roles recently and is doing a very good job indeed!

7. BEHIND THE AUTHOR

I can tell that Okayado (real name Takemaru Inui) is a funny person in real life. =) His sense of humour translates through this manga. I read in my writing course that your personality and sense of humour can influence your style of writing.

I did a little background research on him and I found plenty of interesting facts. It seems that he started off as a Hentai Artist.[1] He has drawn a lot of monster-girls or hybrid humans that look very similar to girls in this manga. It also explains why there are a lot of rude innuendos in this manga. Since it all, or at least some of it, stems from his days as a Hentai Artist.

8. BIBLIOGRAPHY

Okayado., 2013. Monster Musume Volume One. Los Angels: Seven Seas.

Okayado Twitter Page., 2014. @Okayado1215. [online] Available at: <http://www.pixiv.net/member.php?id=267014&gt; [Accessed 7 March 2014]

Okayado Pixiv Page., 2014. [online] Available at: <http://www.pixiv.net/member.php?id=267014&gt; [Accessed 7 March 2014]

9. CONCLUSION

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I pretty much shared my honest thoughts throughout this review. So, out of the options of a thumb’s down, a thumbs up and two-thumbs up, I give this…

Two-thumbs up!

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Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts and opinions, I thoroughly enjoyed writing it. I hope you enjoyed reading it! =D

Sayonara!^^/

Ryan.


[1] Hentai Artist: Hentai is basically animated or cartoon porn.