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Review: Yotsubato! – The Manga

8 Sep
(Note: All manga panels must be read from right to left)

Good morn/eve/twilight folks, have you all been well?
Chewed your nails to the quick in anticipation of the lovely tidbits I drop you all?
Well your wait is over! Rejoice! Particularly because I have something utterly delicious for you today.
Ready? Yes/No?
This week I’d like to present my all time favourite manga to all of you: Yotsubato! (referred to as some by 4chan’s mascot, to my extreme horror) is one of those slice-of-life type of manga’s that never fails to cheer you up. Sort of like your Calvin and Hobbes or Garfield, this manga will make you crack up with it’s insane, yet completely normal situations – all the while reminding you in little bits about your own childhood antics.
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The story is centred on Yostuba Koiwai, a five year-old with ever expanding curiosity and the child-like energy to match. Encountering new people and situations in her daily life, Yotsubas unique reactions make this manga one of a kind. Along with her adoptive dad, his friends Jumbo and Yanda and the three girls from the neighbouring house, each of little Yostubas adventures are unique and yet reminiscent of the kind of scrapes only children seem to get themselves into.

In addition to the always amusing yet different encounters with adults and with people closer her own age, Yotsubas reactions to inanimate objects also often yield uncontrollable laughter.
The mangaka unfortunately cannot be sued for blood vessels and stomachs bursting while reading.
What makes the shows context funnier still, is that the adults are no less childish. The relationship between Mr. Koiwai and Yotsuba makes for an excellent Father-daughter relationship, because he encourages her inquisitiveness and often participates in her escapades himself.
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And characters like Jumbo and Yanda remind you that no matter how mature adults seem, they all have a kid inside them, just waiting to get out and stick it’s tongue out at you.
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And the hilarious dialogues seem to add to the simplistic drawing style – for example, when asked where she’s come from, Yotsuba points and says, “from the left!” to the amusement and confusion of her new neighbours. Witty writing that makes one break out into giggles seems to be Kiyohiko Azumas forte. Deliberately incorrect spellings or ideas are portrayed through lines like “Make home at yourself!” – a line used by Yotusba to welcome visitors to the house.
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 I could keep going on about the manga, and drop endless spoilers, but that might ruin the fun of discovering it for yourself. Personally, my favourite chapter happens to be Chapter 9, “Yotsuba and Revenge”, an amusing chapter showcasing the effects of mature content aired on television on children nowadays.
Was I convincing enough? Because I can’t emphasises how much sunshine this manga adds to my day.
It’s like happiness wrapped up in paper.
Give it a shot. This might just be what you were looking for all along.
The Resident Drama Queen
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Shugo chara – Manga Review

5 Sep
 

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Shugo-Chara seems, at first glance, like a cross between Cardcaptor Sakura and Gakuen Alice, with the main Tsundere heroine Amu Hinamori being quite similar to Sakura with her job of cleansing the “bad eggs” – much like how Sakura cleansed the cards in Cardcaptor Sakura; and her main rival Ikuto Tsukiyomi being a perfect rip-off of Natsume Hyuuga. Really, there’s absolutely no difference! 
And yet, there’s something about it that draws you in – be it the goth-punk-tsundere lead girl or the emo and flirty Ikuto. The manga has a nice blend of comedy, action and fantasy without anything blindingly ‘shojo’ in it.
Plot
The story of Shugo-Chara revolves around Amu Hinamori who is, as earlier described, a perfect tsundere goth-punk character who has a reputation of being ‘cool and spicy’ in the middle school she studies in. However, this is not her true character. Her true self happens to be an extremely shy girl with absolutely no talent in socializing which she covers up perfectly with a cold exterior demeanor. Tiring of this duel personality, one night she makes a wish to give her enough courage to be her true self. 

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As a result of this, three eggs are born the next day, each of which hatches into little fairy characters called ‘Shugo-Chara’ who represent her inner desires: Su, who represents her wish to be good at cooking; Ran, who represents her wish to be good at sports and Miki, who represents her wish to be artistic.

The fact that she owns them is however discovered by the four guardians of the school, who are basically students with their own shugo-chara taking care of the schools administration. They request Amu to be a part of the guardians and ask her to help them find the ‘Embryo’ – a mythical egg that fulfills the owner’s desire. This gets Amu involved in a lot more than she bargained for as she is assigned to be a cleanser of the ‘x-eggs’ which are eggs that represents the wishes of children who have given up on it and not to mention, fight against the evil organization ‘Easter’, that is set out to look for Embryo too.
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This introduces her to the character Ikuto who is sent by Easter and is also after the Embryo for his own personal reasons. As the story unfolds, Amu begins to discover the true nature of the organization and also the mysterious character Ikuto, who strangely seems to be helping her more than going against her. 
But the beauty of the story lies in the intricate manner in which the author has slipped in the situations that we face in real life, that bring us down and force us to lose our true self and cast away our dreams. This, being the central theme of the entire story, is given extreme importance. The author continues to play with the same issue with different personalities who have different priorities and the various methods they resort to in order to deal with their problems and in the end find their true self in their own way.
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This is not the only concern it deals with though. As Amu continues to cleanse each egg, a new problem and a new concern is brought into light with the appearance of each egg and the cleansing indicating that there is always a way out of any tribulation or concern as long as one believes in himself/herself.
Characters
As I mentioned before, the most refreshing thing about Shugo-Chara is the fact that the lead girl is not the usual happy-go-lucky and super optimistic hyperactive girl. Instead, she has her own confusions about what she truly is – she is bratty, she can bad mouth anyone if she wants and she’s an imperfect and insecure girl who is still looking for her true self and has a lot more crushes on her classmates than she can handle!
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Apart from her, most of the characters are the usual kind and sweet supporters of the main girl, always guiding her from the sidelines. Be it the Prince-Complex Tadase or the cross dresser Nadeshiko or the baby of the group, Yaya, they never fail to keep you entertained.
And another interesting character is Ikuto, who, like I mentioned before, is a perfect rip-off of Natsume. He seems like someone who’s forced to be bad for some of his own personal reasons and is fighting to free himself from it. And thus, he finds a strange solace in Amu who can strangely see right through him and believes that he might not really be as bad as he looks. 
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Artwork
Art style of peach pit seems to fit the shojo feel of the manga perfectly. In case you happen to be a girl who is an ardent shojo fans, you would immediately fall in love with Amu’s goth-punk style of dressing. The character designing is quite unique, with each character having their own distinct style and look that sets them apart.
Shugo Chara might seem like a typical shojo at first glance, but I guess it all depends on the way you perceive it. It remains as an entertaining shojo if you don’t bother to look much into the story and it seems like a life lesson if you try and figure out the subtle messages hidden throughout the story. 
If you don’t mind the slight childishness of the story (apart from Ikuto who easily makes you forget that the story is originally for young girls) this is something that is sure to keep you entertained!
– By Seema Kakade
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A Quick look at "Level-E" The Anime Series

2 Sep

Level-E, the series delivers a highly entertaining mix of comedy and storytelling with an original, creative story and a lot of witty, loveable characters a perfect package.
The series is adapted from the original manga series released back in 1995 by Yoshihiro Togashi – the same Mangaka who also wrote Hunter × Hunter and YuYu Hakusho.  It can best be described as a Sci-fi-Alien-Comedy split into several small story arcs spanning a total of 13 episodes. The concept behind the show has some similarities with the Men In Black movies/series in which several species of extra-terrestrial (E.T) aliens live amongst us and we are not aware of their presence.

Every story arc has its own unique story and they are all very different from each other. However in each one the story always revolves around the main character that everyone calls “Baka Ouji” (Idiot Prince) – a blond haired extraterrestrial being from planet Dogura whose ship crash lands on earth.  The best way to describe Baka Ouji’s character is an intelligently-lazy arrogant person who enjoys playing gags on people around him; the other supporting characters are as good and have an amazing chemistry between them, especially the prince’s bodyguard named Captain Kraft whose job is to keep track of the Idiot Prince.

What really surprised me about Level-E is that fact that it delivers a really engaging story in spite of all the humor thrown into it with several plot twists throughout the various arcs. The 3rd episode was one of the best Anime moments I have encountered!! – an ending with a major twist that really changes the whole setting of what this show is all about! (If you find the beginning of the show slightly slow…. Wait till you finish the first arc!)

The presentation of the show is top notch as the animation is by Studio Pierrot – the same studio responsible for Bleach, Naruto and other popular Anime series.  The character design and art style are well executed with really good voice-acting, backed up by great music and a very catchy title-song that really goes well with the theme of the show.

If you are in the mood for a fun, short and witty series with a great ending and many surprises, Level – E is right down you’re alley!

Adventures of a Rose (A shoujo review)

29 Aug
 

Pulling from our favourites once again folks, here’s something especially for the ladies! Barajou No Kiss (a.k.a. “Kiss of the Rose Princess”)!!
This is a shoujo that I absolutely loved for its uniqueness… OK, maybe not so unique since the story keeps reminding me of Card Captor Sakura now and then, but it’s still unique to a great extent never the less.
To begin with, the entire portrayal of the manga screams 19th century England, and yet, somehow it oozes the Japanese essence in the story as well as the art – the kind of blend that is hard to get and the mangaka has managed to capture the essence of both elements and mix them up perfectly. Anyway, so without further ado, let me dive straight into the details you’re all waiting to find out.

Plot: 
The story of Barajou No Kiss is a fantasy, action, adventure and romance story by Shouoto Aya that revolves around a high school girl (now that’s what I call a real surprise!), Anis Yamamoto, who is given this strange choker by her father that looks like a black neck-strap with a pretty rose at the center. Her father specifically warns her not to lose the choker and that if she does she will be punished severely! Now, now, its not because the choker is super rare or expensive. The choker has a long story of its own that will be revealed later – no, not in the review, I mean in the story. 

Anis of course is far from happy with the choker since it attracts a lot of attention and wearing something like that goes against the dress code, which is why she’s always being chased around by a disciplinarian teacher, threatening her to take it off.
The teacher’s wish comes true as the choker comes off her finally, but to her dismay, is immediately lost – more like taken away by a strange(-ly cute) creature. Anis is now terrified, wondering what her punishment might be and starts looking for it before her father finds out about it, leading her to a discovery that changes her life.
I’m not going to spoil the story for you by spilling out what happens after that but lets just say it turns her life upside down. (Oh my! I dunno how many of these surprises I can take!) The story might seem like old wine in a new bottle, but the new bottle is what makes it interesting!


Story: 
Since I have probably already dragged on enough, let me say what I think of it, briefly. The story is definitely good so far, though I’m not sure if guys would enjoy it as much. That depends on your tastes I suppose – if you happen to love gory stuff, you might find this a little boring. Now let me inform that the story is far from the usual magical-girl story and I definitely like it’s narration and pacing. It doesn’t drag on such that anything needs to be fast-forwarded and slows down and gives enough explanation where it’s needed. Also, since the main character is a mush-hater you don’t have to worry about her giving emotional speeches at random.

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The story doesn’t really have a kawaii or moe feel to it and the girl does more than just waving her magical wand around. Wait, she doesn’t actually have one! Anyway, the feel of the story leans more towards Goth than moe, which is one of the reasons why I enjoy reading it.
The story does have a considerable amount of twists of its own and a lot of new characters popping up periodically, each more annoying than the other – but at some point it becomes kinda obvious where the story is leading. But that’s not the end. There’s still a lot of juice left in the fuel-tank in the form of some unanswered questions that you want to see answered and some new incidents that intensify the storyline. I’d give it a 6 on 10 for the originality of the story, since it reminded me of Card Captor Sakura, once it boiled down to its main plot.


Characters: 
The characters are definitely not of a new breed. The girl is a typical Tsundere, but what I loved about her is how strong she is as a person. She comes across a lot of shocking revelations about people close to her, but that doesn’t shake her. She continues to move ahead, never unnerved by any of the disastrous stuff that happens to her. She’s not the kind to cry when something goes wrong or run to help. Well, maybe she does, sometimes, but not in a way that makes her look like a typical damsel in distress.
So that’s it for the main character. Other characters, like her, are not entirely of a new breed either but have been defined well and shown to possess a very good sense of judgement and know what to prioritize at what moment.
Character design is beautiful. This manga is definitely not short of bishonen, as expected of a pro shojo mangaka. So considering all these elements, I’d give it 6 on 10 for character design including their personality.

Art: 
I could write an entire page describing the beautiful artwork in this manga, but I’ll sum it up for you in one word – GORGEOUS! 
If you happen to love the kind of art style you get to see in Kuroshitsuji a.k.a. Black Butler, you are going to love this. There is absolutely no flaw in the art style and as I mentioned earlier, it brings out that old English essence and yet manages to keep you reminded through its art that it’s still very Japanese. I also love how it maintains that goth-magical feel to it while still keeping a casual high school life atmosphere without making the two elements blatantly distinct. The mangaka definitely knows how to blend them, I’d give her that.
 So overall I’d rate it 10 on 10 for its perfect art and character design.

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The story is a fun read if you are looking for a fantasy and shoujo story with a goth element in it. I’d rate this manga 7 on 10 for the overall enjoyment factor, no matter how much it reminds me of a certain CLAMP work. It’s still fun to read.
That’s all about Barajou No Kiss. See ya again next Monday with another review. If you have any particular review request, you can let me know in the comments.
Also let me know if you’d like me to cover some other aspects of the manga I review, so you can get the best of me.
Happy reading!


– By Seema Kakade

JUMP-ing with joy!

18 Aug


Gibba bloog boopaapa bi baap!

This is “Welcome dear readers” in Gobble-de-gook (for learning Gobble-de-gook in just 4.26 minutes contact the writer of this post)

When the last issue of Jump by Level 10 was launched, I was excited and wanted so very very much to review it! Especially the continuing adventures of Shotgun Sharma and Chappan Churi! I got the framework ready, scanned all the images I wanted to use and was all set to write it down, but sadly got stuck with something or the other, lots of office work came through at the wrong time, had a computer problem, I mean – everything that could go wrong – DID go wrong! Damn you Murphy!!!!



Is it a plane? Is it a bird? No! It’s the opposing team!!!

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Khair, when the new double issue was released there was NO way I would let this one pass, so here I am with my first Jump review for Comic Addicts.


For those who have never read any issue of Jump before or haven’t been following the stories, don’t worry, you can still go ahead and buy this one. This one wraps  a lot of things, so you can read the “Story so far” and then continue. You can always catch up with the old issues later.


When I opened the packet, I was very excited. It is a double issue pack (well… due to the fact that Level 10 forgot to launch it last month, so 2 issues were clubbed together!!! To be fair, we were told about this beforehand, so they escape the gallows this time). It is a seriously thick issue with the usual high quality pages and print quality – this one time, I got drenched in the rain with Issue 7 in my bag and the whole thing was wet, but the ink did not bleed, colors were steady, all I had to do was to let it dry and it was good as new.
 

Shaurya Cover – The times they are a-changin’

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For a 100 bucks it is a seriously good deal. Personally I won’t mind waiting 2 months if Level 10 can release this kind of issue every 2 months. Plus you save 20 bucks on the deal as 2 single issues would be 120! It has some 105-110 pages in total – don’t ask me for I have NO idea why don’t they put page numbers in comic books these days!

The cover is by Deepak Sharma who has done a brilliant job, as usual, with a bold letter ominous looking “Bye Bye Bangalore” written on the front face! For the uninitiated, this is a play on words signifying both the finale of The Rabhas Incidence and the shifting of base from Bangalore to Mumbai for Level 10!
Rabhas Incident – The final solution?

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The first story is the last episode of The Rabhas Incident. After a great spell lasting 8 issues, Rabhas has finally ended. For now! We are placed right in the middle of action where Col. Rafeeq is trying to get out of the city, trying save the last handful survivors. They encounter various hurdles and overcome all odds to try and reach the light at the end of the tunnel. The story moves to another set of people who are in the city for a completely different motive, and all these stories move individually towards a collective end.
Run for your life!!!!!

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As for the end, it is as unexpected as it can be. Rabha’s has been my favorite story of the lot by far and I am seriously hoping that “The End” on the last page is not really THE End. I would love to see it returns and continue either from where they’ve left it or even start a completely different arc. Whatever you do, don’t let go of RI, Level 10! I can start a signature campaign if that is what would make you continue!

A bonus feature in this issue is a detailed discussion about the covers of The Rabha’s Incident by none other than our fellow Addict – Mayank Khurana, who has given a brief history of the old covers of RI. You have to read it to enjoy it! I can’t really explain it in a review. Just check out the old covers of RI on Level 10’s website or their Facebook page and you’ll know when I’m talking about.

After The Rabhas Incident we move on to the 9th Volume of Shaurya, the bunch of young kids with extraordinary powers who are trying to save the world while trying to save themselves from an evil society Ah-Nirvan, which is trying to exploit them for its own selfish reasons.
Waiting for the news – Jay can’t handle the guilt anymore…

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The Gang was in the middle of a skirmish in the last issue, ambushed by the antagonist and his goons, Sid was hurt, chaos everywhere. The story starts bang in the middle of the action. Sid gets better – on account of being a robot with healing nanoites working their technological magic on his body er… armour… suit… whattchamathingy you wanna call it – someone else gets hurt badly. No. I am not going to tell you who (or should I say whom?), you have to read it to find out.

We are taken from the action to a more serious atmosphere where the hurt members are being treated and Jay is feeling guilty for having been duped by the Baba (Yes, there was a Baba too. See – you’ve missed a LOT if you haven’t read the previous issues, so go get them first Or wait. You can get that nice season 2 pack that’s being offered by Level 10 now!).
Oh Boy. You can NEVER guess who THESE guys are!!! Not on your life, unless you’ve read it already! Boy-oh-Boy! Woo.
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Anyway, so the whole story – from the first issue till now – is converging to an exciting end now.  Shaurya also ends in this issue – but at the point it was cut off, it is almost certain that it will continue in the next season. Or it should, if I have read the signs right. My only complaint was with the ending. It was a nice twist, but was a little clichéd and could have been implemented a little better. Maybe there were hints about this ending in the previous issues, but honestly, if there were, I don’t really remember them.
All-in-all, a pretty satisfying end of the chapter, and however clichéd it was, the end DOES promises to be interesting in the next release!

Finally after devouring these two stories, the Galactus in me was still not satisfied and my Silver Surfer found a new planet that had the capability to quench my never-ending thirst!
Cover: Batu Gaiden

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It was a small peaceful planet, inhabited by peaceful residents, all of them sportsmen, some students, some former players, some teachers, some caretakers all of whom have one thing in common. Love for Cricket… Woops. Kree-Kaht!

This chapter of Batu Gaiden is also, as usual, excellent. Some fantastic art work by Xong Bros. with the usual humor, manga action and excitement and a superfast pace. I can’t, or rather won’t talk much about BG, it’s still ongoing and trust me – You don’t want spoilers. You want to go and buy this one, or maybe just order it from Level 10’s website.

So you think YOU can play cricket?

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Lot of people have told me that they didn’t like Batu Gaiden, maybe because they can’t interpret the Manga in an Indian environment, or maybe they couldn’t comprehend the concept of Kree-Kaht in the oh-so-stylish Manga style – India is very sensitive about Cricket, you see, but say what you may, I found the story, art and the concept pretty entertaining and I wouldn’t mind seeing more Manga and certainly more Batu Gaiden in the future issues.

Oh, before I forget. There is another brilliant surprise inside this issue.
Bodyline! Gentlemen’s Game? Surely not…

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2 single page funnies! I am trying to convince the good folks at Level 10 to let me put up those funnies with this review, but if they don’t… Well… What the hell, I’ll just scan and upload it.

That’s all for now folks. 

Have a good one. Or should I say… Goo baa dda lla lal addo book!?          
Take a shot at THIS Dhoni!

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xxxHolic

26 Jul

xxxHolic: Review by Seema Kakade

There are some Manga that are so popular, that they don’t even need an introduction, let alone a review. Yet, I’ve seen a lot of people shunning away from these amazing pieces of works either due to a misleading title or a shoujo-ish outer appearance. Case in point – xxxHolic.
So for all those who are lingering around this manga without enough confidence to start reading it, I’m here to give you a brief overview of this cult classic.


xxxHolic, also simply known as Holic, is a fantasy, psychological and philosophical story by the famous group of manga artists CLAMP. Since the story happens to be a crossover series of Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle and Card Captor Sakura, many incidents in the story might throw you off the course, but I assure you, that you can totally understand the story even if you don’t know squat about the aforementioned stories. So, without further ado, let me give you a brief introduction of the story.
Plot – The story opens with a young high school boy, Watanuki Kimihiro, who has supernatural powers to see demons and spirits (no, it’s not the usual cliché story of saving the world; there’s much more to it in this one!) being, as usual, followed, trapped and tormented by a bunch of spirits, while he does everything in is power, which is next to nothing, to get rid of them. While he is busy performing this feat, he ends up landing in front of a strange, old styled building that is squeezed between two modern sky scrapers.
xxxHolic 1 Cover

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While he is contemplating what the building is doing in such a strange place, he is involuntarily dragged inside the building, where he meets a strange woman, who calls herself a fortune teller and the owner of the fortune telling shop, which is what the strange building happens to be. This woman, who introduces herself as Ichihara Yuuko, a wish granter, strikes a deal with Watanuki that she’ll help him get rid of his power for a certain price. Before Watanuki can contemplate what is happening to him, the deal is sealed and as a price, Watanuki becomes Yuuko’s servant.  

xxxHolic
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Story – That’s just the beginning of the story as it takes you into a rollercoaster ride of strange events that slowly change Watanuki’s life as well as his personality, as he begins to understand and discover little truths of his life and finally realize where he really stands.
So what is so philosophical about the story, I hear thee ask? The philosophical part about the story is the fact that you can clearly see Watanuki growing as a person from a nagging and slightly self-centered person to a truly responsible, mature and an understanding individual. Since anything more than this is going to give away a lot of spoilers, let’s just say this series is a feast for those with an appetite for intellectual stories and you would definitely not want to miss it! 


The story manages to remain on track and does a surprisingly good job at blending itself with the story of Tsubasa Chronicle and not to mention, maintain the right timeline without giving away the spoiler for the latter series and what’s more, everything makes sense in the end! Now that’s what I call a planned story! I’d give it for the sheer lack of possibility of being able to predict absolutely anything in the story. Heck, it doesn’t even give you enough time to get over one shock and it drops the next bomb! 
Center Spread – Watanuki spots Yūko for the first time

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The story does go off track now and then, which I feel was necessary to make sure the story isn’t too heavy to digest. It’s like a light breeze that blows in once in a while that pulls you out of all the tension before pushing you into another crazy rollercoaster ride.


The story also gives you little tidbits on the values of life now and then, which is a perfect addition for those who love a bit of intellectual essence in the story, which is why I put this in the philosophical genre.

Characters – Characters are undoubtedly mature and not your usual moe or tsundere characters seen everywhere these days. So, this one’s a safe haven for those who are sick of them – yes that includes me too. So how are the characters so unique? For starters, you have a character like Watanuki who explodes like a fire cracker at every little thing and is yet, extremely understanding and happens to be an excellent listener. He just does not tolerates anything that doesn’t make sense, which is why he explodes!
Watanuki meets Yūko with Maru & Moro 
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And there are characters like Yuuko, who is all-knowing and extremely intellectual, yet, fun loving and bullying Watanuki happens to be her favorite hobby. Apart from these two main characters, there’s Himawari -Watanuki worships the ground she walks on, who is an extremely strong girl with a strong will to continue to keep utmost faith in herself and keep moving forward no matter what life throws in her way. Her outwardly cute personality if effective in hiding the strong person that she is, on the inside, which Watanuki begins to adore even more.

There are loads of other supporting characters like Doumeki , Mokona and Doumeki’s grandfather who continues to support Watanuki from the sidelines and several characters from Tsubasa Chronicle that make occasional appearance in this manga. I’d give it an 7 on 10 for the uniqueness of the characters alone.

Art – Character design, as expected from CLAMP, is unique and exceptional. Well, this might not exactly be a treat for gory lovers, but the delicate and elegant appearances of the characters fits the feel of the story perfectly. It’s also quite evident that the manga artists have adopted a slightly Indian feel to the characters, at least on the covers that just makes it so much more enthralling.


 The overall art has a very enchanting and fantasy feel to it and occasionally, you might come across art work that seems to be inspired by the traditional Japanese ukiyo-e wood prints style of art and a little bit of traditional Japanese and Chinese art style thrown into the mix that mokona, the character designer of CLAMP, churned into the unique art style that you get to savor in the story. Apparently, art was also inspired by Alphonse Mucha, who Mokona is a huge fan of. Apart from that, you can also notice that the art style is very similar to the one that is incorporated in CLAMP’s previous work RG Veda, but this is one unique style that you would fall in love with. Everything from the enchanting smokes that is so ukiyo-e, to the gorgeous detailing of the outfits and the alluring waves in which the hair flows has a way to pull you into the world of ancient Japanese fantasy. 

All-in-all I’d give it 9 on 10 for everything ranging from the originality of the story to the character design and the overall enjoyment factor. I’ll have to take away the one point for the fact that the story kind of drifts away from the main story once in a while, which never made me complain though.

xxxHolic 2: Cover
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Transformers: Dark of the Moon Review

18 Jul


Alright, so this exactly new news, but late is better than never right? So here it is, a review of Transformers: Dark of the Moon. Besides, think of it as a nice break in all of this Harry Potter madness.

So lets start with the obvious; Megan Fox isn’t in it. So how does her replacement Rosie Huntington-Whiteley do? Well in the first half of the movie she does well; however, once the action really kicks in she seems very lost. Perhaps she would do well in romantic comedies, but Ms. Huntington-Whiteley should refrain from action films. Overall though, very attractive and the accent is also nice, but when it all hits the fan she really doesn’t have much of an effect at all.


Now, onto the important focal point of the movie; the bots! There were some very heated battles in this final installment of Transformers. You also get to see some bots that weren’t in the previous film. Bots such as Soundwave, Laserbeak, Igor, and others. Of course the classic characters come back like, Optimus, Bumblebee, Starscream, and Megatron. The most anticipated addition was Sentinel Prime.


The Mighty Spock Prime!!!

Sentinel was one of the original Primes and he is also voiced by Leonard Nimoy. Yep, that’s right, Spock came out of retirement to voice a Transformer. Very cool in a super geeky way right? What’s even more super geeky and cool (possible spoiler alert) is that Nimoy utters one of his famous lines from Star Trek; “The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.” Awesome in a totally nerd way right?


Transformers: Dark of the Moon also has a few celebrity appearances like John Malkovich, Patrick Dempsey, Frances McDormand, and Buzz Aldrin (yes THE Buzz Aldrin). Again, characters from the previous movies come back. A personal favorite is John Tuturro as Simmons. The crazy walking conspiracy encyclopedia is back and he has an assistant named Dutch played by Alan Tudyk.


The story line for Dark of the Moon is a cross between War of the Worlds and The Matrix. Aliens invade, the good guys are helpless, and the bad guys convince everyone that getting rid of the Autobots who can save us is in our best interest cause then they’ll take what they want and go away. Then, like idiots, we all believe them and have effectively been duped by the bad guys. It’s now man vs machine and the machines are winning. The ending leaves no doubt that yes, this is it. There is no room for anymore sequels, although Hollywood has proven us wrong before.

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Overall it’s a very fun flick and worth the watch. The Decepticons are much more devious and ruthless than they have ever been. A lot of gaps in the history between the humans and Transformers get filled in with some interesting surprises. For those conspiracy minded people who believe the moon landing was faked, well it was, but only to cover up the true reason for the race to the moon. It wasn’t just to beat the Russians there, it was also to investigate an event NASA computers registered before the Russians could.


Battles were fought, people and bots were lost, but in the end good prevailed over evil and humanity was saved yet again.