Utawarerumono – Itsuwari no Kamen

(25 episodes)

What’s it about ?

Originally Utawarerumono was a tactical-RPG/visual novel hybrid, which got an anime adaptation a few years later in 2006 to tie-in with its PS2 rerelease.

This series is an adaptation of a sequel/spin-off videogame, which got released a few days ago. Synergy !


It’s not really clear yet whether this is a straight sequel set after the first game, or an alternate universe take ; apparently some of the (surviving) supporting cast are supposed to show up later on. For now, though, it’s all about new characters… who have very close dynamics to the originals.

“Haku”, our new protagonist, is an amnesiac dude who wakes up in cave, with monsters about to eat him. Also, unlike anyone else we see, he’s a straight human wearing a modern hospital gown. Given what I remember of the mythos from the previous series, it’s not a good sign. Anyway, he’s not only an amnesiac, but also completely ignorant of the world and its inhabitants, or even of a honest day’s work. He’s not very athletic and more than a bit lazy, but he does have a knack for engineering.

Kuon, the travelling merchant who saves him, quickly takes him under her wing, declaring herself his guardian and coining his new name. She’s a cat-human hybrid (which shows mostly with the ears and the tail). Anyway, cue cute romantic comedy hijinks in a pleasant medieval-fantasy setting. (That she‘s the one who spies on him in the bath tells you everything about this show’s priorities and sense of humour.)

Production Values

Quite nice ; there’s a good amount of scenery porn, and the animators are careful to let the body language of both leads carry a lot of the story.

Overall Impression

Well, this is certainly a nice and fun early romance between consenting adults. It easily captures what I liked best about Utawarerumono, and even improves upon it by having a more proactive female lead. So far, so good.

On the other hand, there are lots of worrying signs that the original mythos is still valid, and that was quite dark indeed. The original series struggled a lot with the sudden tone shifts between goofy harem comedy and brutal war story (to say nothing of the weird stuff towards the end), and both Haku’s introduction and the fact that the second game is still billed as a tactical-RPG makes me worry we’re going to cover similar territory. Now, it’s very possible this is a “done right” quasi-remake that suppresses the original’s weaknesses ; stranger things have happened. But the trainwreck potential is very present.

Anyway, this is a good enough start, and I’m intrigued enough by the project, to keep watching for at least a while.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Fall 2015 – Page 2

One Punch Man

(12 episodes)

What’s it about ?

Offbeat superheroing, adapted from a very popular shonen manga series.


This episode is wholly devoted to selling the concept of One Punch Man, our protagonist. He lives in a world where supervillains (and subterranean species, and the Earth’s immune system, and…) keep sprouting up and wrecking shit up. There are a number of superheroes in activity to stand up to all of those, and our hero is one of the latest.

We’re shown a flashback to his “origin story” three years ago, and it’s (purposefully) less than impressive. Random nobody stands up to a crab supervillain to save a kid, discovers he’d actually like to pursue his childhood dreams of fighting evil, goes and trains offscreen so hard he loses his hair, the end. That’s it, and it drives the point home that the story doesn’t care about the how and why One Punch Man exists.

His gimmick, as the name indicates, is that he can beat any kind of opponent in one punch. (He also has enough resilience to withstand being thrown around a bit before getting a good shot.) And if you think that’d make for boring fight scenes… Well, so does he. It’s all about his existential crisis as he mows down no less than five different baddies over the course of the episode. The only time that looks like he’s breaking a sweat (because there are several baddies to punch), it’s actually a dream sequence articulating his anxieties.

The only other regular-looking character shows up wordlessly, looking at some dead cattle, in the last 30 seconds. Presumably he’s going to actually do something next episode.

Production Values

A preview of this first episode aired on NicoNico a bit ago, so I saw this in eyebleed-o-vision and no OP/ED sequences. It looks okay enough ; the direction has good comedic timing and sells the scale of the threats (or the absence thereof) very well. It’s also got a good grasp of body language… or the absence thereof, in the case of One Punch Man himself.

Overall Impression

Well, it’s a decent joke that’s well-executed. The big question is whether it has legs ; won’t the “One Punch” thing get old really quickly ? This is a show in a dire need of a regular supporting cast to add some depth to the premise. I presume that’s what the second episode’s going to tackle,n of course ; and the manga has been going on for long enough that I presume the author knows what he’s doing. (I certainly hope he never runs out of really silly supervillains.)

Still, this is a bit of a “wait and see” show ; it’s going to need to be funnier than this pilot for me to stick with it.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Fall 2015

Summer 2015 capsules

Out first show of the season is My Wife is the Student Council President (Okusama ga Seitokaichou!), a series of 8-minute shorts adapted from an erotic comedy manga series. I have to say I feared the worst from the title. An underage wife ?

The good news is that the premise doesn’t involve any actual marriage yet and merely involves the student council president being, er, very “sex-liberated” (condoms for everyone !), and aggressively pursuing her vice-president. So far, he’s not receptive at all to her stalker ways ; which anyone would be even without the huge stick in his ass.

The bad news is that it isn’t really funny. I just can’t laugh with the show, as I find the title character more horrific than cute. And the boring, by-the-numbers point-of-view character doesn’t help matters.

Don’t bother with looking this one up.


Wakaba Girl is a typical adaptation of a 4-panel gag manga as a series of 8-minute-long shorts (extended OP sequence included). It’s basically a “cute girls being cute” affair, with the central gimmick of its heroine Wakaba coming from a very high-class family and being delighted to attend a normal high school where she can make normal friends. Cue many jokes from her being more than a bit sheltered.

It’s cute, reasonably well-paced and funny, and doesn’t overstay its welcome. That’s plenty enough reasons for me to keep watching.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Summer 2015


Wakako-zake is a series of 2-minute (OP included) shorts about a woman who eats out at restaurants, with the constant in her menu being alcohol. And, er, that’s it. Not much in the way of jokes or story (aside from a couple of dudes trying to pick her up), just some food porn. Pass along, nothing to see here.


Sequel Watch !
Dragonball Super picks up a few months after the Majin Buu arc, which means we’re ignoring Z’s epilogue with Uub and its timeskip. (To say nothing of GT.) The good news is that no knowledge from the recent movies seems to be required ; the new antagonists are introduced properly and seem to be heading towards their first meetings with the heroes. The bad news is that it’s a very slow start, reintroducing the dozens of members of the supporting cast and what they’re up to now. Even then, I think we missed Krillin & family, as well as most of the minor useless members of the Z-fighters ; we’re mostly focused on the extended Son/Briefs/Satan households for now. There’s little in the way of actual plot right now, aside from the Supreme Kais worrying about new villains showing up anytime now. But then they always do. Since I actually like the more slice-of-life comedy segments of Dragonball, I’m not complaining. (Although less Goten/Trunks screentime would be a relief.)

– Speaking of reintroducing dozens of supporting characters, Durarara!!x2 (Middle Part) feels it was the time to introduce more new characters. And hey, it does makes who comes to try and finish Izaya off in his hospital room a genuine surprise. A nice callback to his introduction, but still unexpected. Aside from that, it’s mostly a matter of positioning all the pieces back in place.

Symphogear GX – Determination to Fist has a positively metal opening action sequence that’s going to be hard to top. It does unfortunately show again that Aoi Yuuki is miles behind Nana Mizuki & Ayahi Takagaki in singing talent, but them’s the breaks. At least we get another Nana Mizuki/Yoko Hikasa duet. Not feeling the new antagonists yet, but I’ll give them time.

Gatchaman CROWDS Insight… I have no clue where they’re going with this new team member and the alien. But it’s certainly very energetic and colourful as usual, and Hajime is still very fun. (“Berg, shut up-su!”)

– As for Working!!!, I’m fearing the ship may have sailed. I quite enjoyed the first two seasons, but this reintroduction episode left me quite cold. Maybe it’ll pick up steam later on, but this wasn’t a good start.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Summer 2015 – Page 3


I’m sure that, like me, you rolled your eyes when Bikini Warriors showed up on the schedule, especially as an adaptation of a line of “sexy” figurines. The good news is that this series of comedy shorts makes its tired cliché of a premise the central joke. Yes, those bikini-style armours are ridiculous and can’t protect much ; let’s have fun with that ! And frankly, the few chuckles it raises are enough to overcome the rudimentary animation and the obnoxious fanservice. It just about gets away with it, and that’s the best it could have ever hoped for.

Million Doll is an adaptation of a web manga series as 8-minute shorts. It’s an exploration of idol fandom culture that just rubs me the wrong way. I think that’s because it seems to lionize its shut-in protagonist and agree with her contempt of the more dilettante fans who are quick to move on from an idol group to the next… never mind that she’s already much creepier and unhealthy than all of them combined. It’s a show that requires you to adhere unconditionally to the glamour of the idol subculture (and dismisses its unpleasantness as coming from a few icky fans), and that’s not something I can get into. It doesn’t help that it’s barely animated, and suffers from a downright ugly CG-animated dancing opening sequence. Avoid like the plague.
SuzakiNishi the Animation is a weird beast. It’s notionally an adaptation of voice-actresses Aya Suzaki & Asuka Nishi’s radio program, where they discuss business models. In practive, this is a series of “comedy” shorts depicting them as new transfer students in high school. The gags are trite and there’s just nothing here that builds upon its name characters or the original premise. Really don’t bother with this.
Kurayami Santa is a bizarre oddity : a series of horror shorts set in the 60s that’s half animation looking like it came from that period, and half actual vintage live-action footage from then. It features a demon looking like a creepy child who punishes evidoers, but in cruel and circuitous ways that make you shudder more than applaud. While I’m intrigued at how this came into being, there’s a gap between that and actually finding it entertaining ; it’s just too weird for me.
Danchigai is an adaptation of a 4-panel gag manga about five siblings rough-housing each other. (Well, they mostly all gang up against the one boy, second oldest of the lot.) It’s very mildly funny, but nothing to go out of your way for.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Summer 2015 – Page 5

Everyday Life with Monster Girls (Monster Musume no Iru Nichijou)

(12 episodes)

What’s it about ?

Adaptation of a harem romantic comedy manga series. Warning : this is often borderline softcore porn.


Kurusu, our protagonist, is an ordinary dude whose life got upended when he became a “Host” for the Semihuman Cultural Exchange program : basically, the monster-people who had remained hidden by the governments until a few years ago are now mingling with humans so as to achieve peaceful coexistence.

Miia, his charge, is a lamia (half-snake) girl. She appreciates him not recoiling in horror at her sight and is very affectionate… maybe a bit too much, as her affections and attempts to snuggle often end up with her strangling him.

Ms Smith is the government agent in charge of supervising Miia’s stay. She’s very obnoxious on monitoring them, although this is presumably partly to cover up her own mistake (as Kurusu didn’t volunteer, and Miia got to him by error). She’s very keen on enforcing the “no sex” rule, too.

The OP and promotional material promise that more monster girls will show up soon and join the regular cast.

Production Values

Very, very fanservicey indeed, with next to no censorship. You’ll get to see nearly every inch of Miia’s body.

Overall Impression

You know a show has its priorities straight when it starts off with a three-minute-long “snuggling in bed” scene, continues with a bath scene, and only after that bothers to explain the plot in a few quick flashbacks. The episode also manages to visit a lingerie store and a love hotel.

I’m sure this appeals to people with certain fetishes, but I found it rather boring. The “racism is bad, m’kay” subtext feels rather perfunctory, and the contrived reason for the constant cock-blocking makes the numerous foreplay scenes more frustrating than arousing. It certainly stopped being funny very early on.

Let’s be frank : I nearly fell asleep watching this. I just don’t care, and won’t be pursuing it any further.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Summer 2015 – Page 5


(13 episodes)

What’s it about ?

Adaptation of a light novel series with the novel premise of “player stuck into a MMORPG that became real”. Never seen that one before.
From what I can gather, it has nothing to do with the various videogames of the same name.


So, Yggdrasil. One of the big full-immersion MMORPG of its time. But it’s been 12 years, the player base had been dwindling down considerably for a while, so its editor has decided to call it a day and shut the servers down tonight.

Momonga, our protagonist, was the leader of one the biggest and strongest “monster” guilds of the game. Max level, tons of stuff and unique items (including his super-wand that can wish nearly anything and even bypass some programming), their own giant demon castle lair, dozens of custom NPC servants, the works. By now, of course, most of the guild members have left, with barely a few of them making an appearance on this last day. But Momonga has decided he’s going to stick around until the end, reminisce, and let the system log him out when the servers shut down.

When he wakes up after midnight, he notices with shock that he’s still in the throne room. The HUD and menus are gone, and he can’t raise anyone (be them other players or GMs) through voice chats. On the other hand, the NPCs now act a lot more real than their previous AI-constrained selves, and obey to all his casually-phrased orders (instead of needing specific commands).

And well, there’s Albedo, his NPC demon secretary, whom he had just rescripted to be in love with him, on a whim. This might have been a poor decision…

What’s going on here ? Has he slided into another world that’s identical to Yggdrasil somehow ? Can he get back to the real world ? Does he even want to ? Will the NPCs keep obeying their very confused master ?

Production Values

Quite good ; there’s some obvious CG work on some undead battle sequences, but it looks okay. And the animators have really managed to make Momonga expressive, with a body language belying clearly a benign middle manager disguised as an over-the-top overlord.

Overall Impression

Well, there’s a reason the cliché premises are still being recycled : they caught on our imagination and offer numerous variants. And hey, I don’t think I’ve seen any of these stories take the point of view of “the bad guys” (who are actually punch-clock villains more than anything else), so that’s something new for this show to explore. And it does so quite well ; Momonga truly feels like a MMORPG guild leader, and a very sympathetic protagonist. The NPC supporting cast also feel like they could grow into interesting characters (or at least entertaining ones).

If there’s one thing that’s lacking here, it’s a clear notion of where the story is going ; we don’t even know whether there’s anyone outside the lair at this point. But hey, that’s something for future episodes to explore ; this one has accomplished its job of selling me on the premise, at least for now.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Summer 2015 – Page 5

Seiyu’s Life! (Sore ga Seiyuu!)

(13 episodes)

What’s it about ?

Adaptation of a semi-autobiographical 4-panel gag manga about voice-acting. (The writer, Masumi Asano, has been in the business for more than a decade and is currently voicing Cure Mermaid in the latest Precure series.) And wait, it was illustrated by Hayate the Combat Butler‘s author ?


Futaba, our heroine, is a newbie voice-actress who gets a minor role as a mascot character in a mecha show. And of course she makes minor blunders one after the other, as this is a gag show. She got into this career because, well, the economy’s tough and jobs are hard to get anyway, so why not go for the dream job ?

Ringo Ichigo, another newbie who got the “Classmate A” role. I have no clue how Futaba can keep messing up her name, as she’s clearly putting on a strawberry-themed persona. She totally didn’t get into this field because she was an anime fangirl, honest !

Rin, a junior high school student, isn’t lost in the building. She’s actually three years their senior, and indeed quite good at it ; it’s impressive how she doesn’t mess up any of the technobabble her bridge bunny character spouts out.

Masako Nozawa is guest-starring as herself, i.e. the respected and admired veteran who turns out to be kind to the newbies despite how intimidated they are. They still expect her to break out a Kamehameha during recording sessions, though.

Production Values

Wait, studio Gonzo are still alive ? That would explain why they got a series where they can get away with leaving all the action shots unfinished.

Overall Impression

Exactly what I expected : a pleasant and modestly entertaining, if a bit slight, look how voice-acting actually works in practice. It’s full of little details that are clearly drawn from experience.

Sure, it’s nowhere as good as SHIROBAKO, but that would be a high bar to clear. But hey, it’s entertaining and instructive enough about the behind-the-scenes of the industry that I’m sure to keep watching.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Summer 2015 – Page 5

Snow-White with the Red Hair (Akagami no Shirayukihime)

(12 episodes, with another season already planned for 2016)

What’s it about ?

Adaptation of a shojo manga series with a medieval setting.


Shirayuki, our protagonist. Why her parents named her “Snow-White” when she’s got the reddest hair ever is a mystery for the ages. They’re not around anymore, though. She makes a living with her herbalist’s shop, although you easily get the impression that she cares more about helping people out than really making money. But then she catches the attention of…

Raji, the local prince, and a complete twat. He sends out soldiers to inform our heroine that she’ll be his concubine, starting tomorrow. Her reaction is of course “fuck no” ; she prepares some last bits of medicine for her regular customers, cuts her hair out in a grand gesture, and quickly leaves the city (and the country just to be sure) before the day is up. She ends up sleeping next to a half-deserted isolated mansion in a forest when she’s woken up by…

Zen, a brash young man who regularly hangs out their with his two companions. He somehow manages to hurt himself when he notices her, and she nurses him back to health after she gets him to trust her. They quickly hit it off, although she’s anxious to leave once he starts probing her a bit too much about what she’s running from exactly.

Someone left out a bunch of red apples by the door, and it’s very obviously coming from Raji. Zen, being a moron, bites into one of them. And promptly gets poisoned for his trouble. Shirayuki feels she has not choice but follow the soldiers back to Raji. While she clearly tells him how little she thinks of him, she feels obligated to obey the asshole in order to get an antidote for Zen. Who promptly shows up looking none for the worse (claiming he’s been building poison immunity) and announces that this won’t be necessary. After all, Raji doesn’t want it to be known that he just poisoned a prince from the much more powerful neighbouring kingdom, right ? So he’d better forget about Shirayuki. Capishe ?

Production Values

Quite good ; studio Bones can always provide with a baseline of quality animation and scenery porn.

Overall Impression

Well, this is a perfectly entertaining shojo romance show. It’s got the benefit of a heroine with an actual backbone and agency, and a male lead who’s quite likeable and offers no rape overtones, which is always welcome. It’s got decent comedic timing, and some fun dialogue when Jun Fukuyama has a hoot playing the villain. (“Mirror, mirror, tell me who is the fairest in the land ?” “Sir, there is no mirror, this is one of your informants.”)

If there’s one flaw here, it’s that it’s a bit bland, even as it plays around with the Snow-White tale. And there’s the question of what happens next once Shirayuki starts leaving at Zen’s castle ; how will the story proceed ? Presumably something more dramatic than mere slice-of-life romance ?

But hey, this is likeable enough for me to give it at least a second episode to gauge its direction, if not more.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Summer 2015 – Page 4

GATE: Jieitai Kanochi nite, Kaku Tatakaeri (“The Self-Defense Forces Fight Like This in That Place”)

(24 episodes)

What’s it about ?

Adaptation of a light novel series about Japan being attacked by heroic-fantasy forces coming from another dimension, and fighting back.


Oh, dear.

Look, I can see why the show concentrates on setting up the core premise instead of developing the actual cast. Selling the high concept is important, after all. It may go a bit too far in overstating the novelty of it, especially with this amazingly tepid “cliffhanger” revealing that the access point between the two dimensions is called “the GATE”. Never would have guessed that.

And we do have an actual protagonist. Itami, off-duty lowly JSDF soldier who was at the right enough place during the initial attack to provide vital direction to the first responders and prepare the way for the actual defense forces. As a result, he gets a promotion, medals and much publicity he doesn’t really care for, as well as being part of the first serious wave being sent through the Gate and to try and occupy the neighbouring dimension.

For maximum audience identification, he’s also a massive otaku (who missed Comiket because of this). And he’s also having random visions of girls of assorted fantasy races who are probably going to be future love interests. The pandering, it hurts. And that’s the core problem with Itami as a character : he never feels like a coherent whole, but instead like a collection of traits the audience should like. He doesn’t feel like an actual person, you see ?

It doesn’t help that everyone else in this episode is amazingly one-note and forgettable. There’s some fuss about the Prime Minister driving much of Japan’s reaction dying before they get to the “invade the other world” part, but we’re given little reason to care about why that would matter. Please focus a random crying orphan girl instead !

Production Values

Nice enough ; you can always count on A1-Pictures to produce competent animation that’s not very flashy but does the job. And hey, the very generic designs for the heroic-fantasy armies may be part of the point.

Overall Impression

I’m sure there are many people ready to pounce upon the “JDSF, fuck yeah !” jingoism that constitutes the backbone of this show. And on some level, it is indeed a bit problematic. But that really wouldn’t matter if the series made a much better effort at making me care. Featuring some actual characters instead of paper-thing cutouts would help. As would a bit of world-building beyond the obvious.

But this first episode leaves me with very little confidence that it can deliver anything on that front. Everything here was by-the-numbers and obvious. There’s no twist (aside from the JSDF actually winning a fight for a change), no particular insight, the “enemy” have no depth whatsoever, and the blatant emotional manipulation showing up here and there gives me little hope on the plot suddenly becoming more even-handed between the various factions.

I just don’t care. Pass !

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Summer 2015


(12 episodes)

What’s it about ?

Adaptation of a crime manga series featuring sex, drugs and ultraviolence.


The show follows the “Handymen”, a two-man team of hit-men/middlemen/whatever-you-pay-them-for-men, operating in the wretched hive of scum and villainy of Ergastulum. They take jobs that the big gangs would rather have a “neutral” party handle, although they also help out the local population on occasion. While they’re violent thugs, the idea seems to be that the city would be even worse off without them “regulating” the doldrums of its criminal underground.

Nick is the muscle of the pair ; an Asian-looking dude who wields a sword and does moves out right this side of wire-fu. He’s impressively lethal, although he can also leave people alive if he doesn’t like them. Also, the big gimmick of the show is that he’s deaf, overcompensating with heightened sight. He communicates mostly through grunts and sign language, although he can talk (in the very slurred way deaf people often do) if he gets angry enough. It’s certainly quite intimidating.

Worick, his partner, understandably handles most of the talking. And boy does he keep babbling. Fortunately, he’s got enough charisma not to be too annoying. He mostly uses guns, and holds his own enough to run a playful kill tally against Nick.

Our plot this episode involves a small gang of upstarts thinking they’re all that and making a move into “forbidden” zones against their superiors’ orders. Clearly they’ve bitten up way more than they can chew, as the mafia lords commission the Handymen (through the intermediary of an unsurprisingly corrupt police officer) to get rid of them. Which they do without breaking a sweat.

Alex is a prostitute often hanging in the back-alley behind the Handymen’s office. Her abusive pimp was part of the upstart gang, so in theory she should have been wiped out with the whole of them ; however, the pair obviously grew sweet on her, and spared her. She’s back in the alley by the end of the episode, but Worick does ask her to mind the phone whenever he’s away (since obviously Nick can’t answer it). Clearly she’s under their protection now, and there are worse positions to be in within this hellhole of a city.

Production Values

Quite nice indeed. The fight scenes are decently animated, and there’s some good direction to keep the action fluid. It does good work at selling Nick’s deafness. It’s also mercifully way less brown than you’d expect of such a premise, although only the OP & ED sequences really get wild with colour.

Amazingly, it’s way less exploitative than you’d expect, given that one of the three main characters is a prostitute we often see on the job. Those short scenes are rather tastefully done.

Overall Impression

Hello, Black Lagoon clone ! And hey, there are worse shows to emulate, especially when it’s actually rather well executed. The characters are fun, the city has lots of atmosphere (I like that the Handymen spend some time helping out random “citizens”), and I’m already getting interested in the struggles of influence between the major gangs. (Which includes the police, presumably.)

The “deaf” gimmick is a bit weird, but at least the show makes enough effort to sell it without feeling too contrived. As a pilot episode, this works very well.

I’m sold.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Summer 2015

Anime from 2000 : The Leftovers

Over the course of this project, there were a number of show I decided not to cover, or just couldn’t. Those were :

  • Sequels to earlier shows (and thus not NEW shows). There’s a few spin-offs I still chose to try and cover for significance reasons, but overall I skipped most of them.
  • A good number of kids’ shows that just weren’t available in any form (even in massacred English dubs). Those I had no option but to skip entirely.
  • Also, I didn’t do OVAs and movies. Sorry, FLCL.

So, here follows a list of everything I didn’t review :

#03 on the list is something called Mon Colle Knights, adapting some collectible cardgame. It’s the first of the many kids’ shows I just couldn’t get any hold of for this project. Not that I’m really heartbroken about it.

#05 is OH! Super Milk-Chan, a sequel to a 1998 comedy kids’ show.

#08 is Ojamajo Doremi #, the second season (out of four) of the magical girl franchise that eventually left way for Precure.

#10 is Digimon Adventure 02, which feels enough like a straight sequel of the original (unlike, say, Tamers) that I am not covering it.

#14 is Hidamari no Ki, an adaptation of a late Osamu Tezuka manga about the friendship between a samurai and a doctor in the Edo period. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find a copy of even the first episode of it. A shame, as it sounds quite interesting.

#15 is Doki Doki Densetsu Mahoujin Guru Guru, a sequel to a 1994 kids’ show adapting a manga lampooning Dragon Quest-style RPGs. It actually sounds quite fun, but it’s outside the scope of this project.

#21 is Inspector Fabre (Fabre Sensei wa Meitantei), another kids’ show I couldn’t lay my hands on.

A few words on #22, Banner of the Stars. It’s basically part two of a trilogy of anime adaptations of a light novel series, so it’s outside the scope of this project. But I should note that it’s the weakest chunk of this S-F saga. Crest kept things close and personal to its lead couple ; Banner II also had a tight focus as they dealt with a prison planet. Banner, on the other hand, throws them in the middle of a massive military campaign, depriving them of agency and relevance in their own series. It’s got its moments, but I found it distinctly less enjoyable.

#23 is yet another unavailable kids’ show, Taro the Space Alien, adapting a children’s manga.

#28 is something called DinoZaurs: The Series, which is apparently a sequel to a few OVAs that were bundled with a toyline that’s also known as “DinoZone”. Anyway, I couldn’t find it, and I had no inclination to dig too much.

#29 is Medarot Damashii, the second season of the adaptation of the Medabots RPG videogame franchise.

#35 is Mr. Digital Tokoro, a full-CG-animated series of shorts (130 3-minute-long episodes) based on comedian Tokoro George. (A guy famous enough to lend his name to half a dozen Mahjong videogames ; he also dubs Homer Simpson.)
Frankly, this sounds dreadful, but I couldn’t find even one of them.

#43 is Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Children, an adaptation of that RPG franchise’s attempt at emulating the success of Pokémon, with simpler gameplay more accessible to kids. It got a sequel in 2002, adapting a further game (and apparently having a troubled production). Anyway, I couldn’t find it.

#44 would be Baby Felix, a spin-off from the old Felix the Cat cartoons (which were apparently popular enough in Japan). Again, I couldn’t find it.

I thought I had gotten my hands on #50, Dotto Koni-chan, but my copy has no subtitles. It’s a comedy kids’ show about kids messing around and getting into hijinks. It’s mostly notable for being animated by studio Shaft before they became SHAFT, and directed by Excel Saga‘s Nabeshin himself. It does look kinda fun.

#51 should be Pipopapo Patrol-kun, a kids’ show featuring a friendly neighbourhood cop that might have been educational if I could have laid hands on it.

Our final and 52nd entry would have been Suteki! Sakura Mama, a series of shorts I could find nearly no information about. A bit anticlimactic, eh ?