Friday, August 30, 2013

Top Thirty Anime Villans

Last year I made a list of my . I have now decided to do a list of my Top Thirty Anime Villains: the villains from Japanese animation whom I consider the best of the best. Before it starts, I'll mention the villains who were in the running but couldn't make it on, and why.

THE CONTENDERS: Prince Sincline from "Go-Lion", who, unlike his US counterpart Prince Lotor the royal dolt, was one of the earliest examples of a compelling villain in anime. He didn't make it on because he was ultimately overshadowed by all the competition in my favor. Naraku and Sesshomaru from "InuYasha": they were both excellent villains at first but then Naraku refused to die and just kept getting less and less impressive, while Sesshomaru became a bland anti-hero. Obviously, neither of them could make the cut. Orochimaru from "Naruto": what's funny is that he's actually a fairly average villain rather than a great one. Gaara was a better villain than he was! He really comes off as nothing more than Ninja Voldemort. He was only in the running because damn if he doesn't somehow have one of the coolest theme musics ever given to an anime villain. It's far more epic than he deserved! Sosuke Aizen from "Bleach": I'm sure you all know why he didn't make the list. When he first outed himself as the villain, he was hailed as one of the best manga/anime villains in years for it. But that praise was too soon, for he devolved into a bland, nonsensically written Villain Sue afterwards, and is now seen as one of the worst villains out there. Shameful of you, Tite Kubo. Shameful. And last there's Ladd Russo from "Baccanno!" While I really enjoy the character and he's one of the best things about that series, he just comes off as a dumb thug and supporting bad guy rather than a major villain. This list is for BIG villains only. So without further delay, here we go through the list!

30: GANKUTSUOU (GANKUTSUOU: THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO) - This evil alien parasite is the living embodiment of hatred, spite, and the desire for vengeance. It's name translates to "master of the cave", signifying where Edmund Dantes discovered it, and it's been consuming his life and his being ever since. As the Count of Monte Cristo, Edmund does everything in the name of taking revenge on those who wronged him, and Gankutsuou feeds off of those vengeful feelings, in turn driving the Count to more insane and villainous behavior. It's a relationship where the evil entity thrives while the host suffers. Yet it's hard to shake off, because the wants of the host are too strong, and the alien is what fulfills them. It, combined with it's vampiric host, was a great villain.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Live-Action Adaptation sequel Rurouni Kenshin Get Soujirou Seta and Aoshi Shinomori

Following news earlier on TATSUYA FUJIWARA, who confirmed to serve as the main antagonist, MAKOTO SHISHIO, additional cast for the sequel now RUROUNI KENSHIN has been reported.

RYUNOSUKE KAMIKI (Big Man Japan, Summer Wars) is ready to act as SOUJIROU SETA, which will surely be remembered by fans as the right hand of MAKOTO SHISHIO young too.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

2007, Part 1: Seven for Seven: Three Robot Tales

Owen writes copy for a living, and has been known to occasionally extend that ability to anime, although it's a while since he did so. When he's not attempting to finish his backlog of games on , he can be usually found on , trying to break language 140 characters at a time.Everyone knows how this list ends. It's the beginning, however, that makes the most of what it really is: an unbridled look at nostalgia barely six years old. That's kindergarten age! How do you tell Nostalgia that they have to get out of the house, put on a uniform, and play nice with the others? One week at a time, I think.

For this year, I decided to focus on seven original, made-for-anime works. No adaptations, please; we try to keep the riff-raff out. The emphasis on "made for anime" here was a no-brainer; the problem with adaptations, inevitably, lies in how the original's vision has to be molded to fit into the target medium, and in this case anime. In this the premise of an adaptation is usually flawed; the arcs in a manga are either ignored or overtly drawn out, the sparse text of a light novel becomes a plodding 25-minute exercise in animated dramas, and the less said about visual novel adaptations, the better.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Otakon 2013: Let the 20th Anniversary Celebration Begin!

(note: No Ongoing Investigations, Type-Moon Weekly News Round Up, or All Points Bulletin this week.)

20 Years of Otakon? As if it wasn't exciting enough every year anyway! They've pulled out all the stops to bring as many guests as they could pack in. There are also a load of concerts, screenings, and events that aren't to be missed.

ACF 1996: Multiple Shonen Jump Digital Manga Titles From VIZ Now Available At U.K. Nook Store

NARUTO (c) 1999 by Masashi Kishimoto/SHUEISHA Inc.


Samurai cinema (A collection of favorites; not necessarily in order of preference)

The genre includes both chanbara (action-oriented sword-fight films) and jidai-geki which equates to . Jidaigeki may refer to a story set in an historical period, though not necessarily dealing with a samurai character or depicting swordplay.

The films are usually set during the(1600-1868), and focuses on the end of an entire way of life for the samurai. Many of the films deal with masterless samurai or , or samurai dealing with changes to their status resulting from a changing society.

Anime Insider: Best Anime Ever

With the arrival of Guillermo del Toro's PACIFIC RIM (2013) and its aspirations to pay homage to the world of anime and kaiju, while delivering a wholly original film of his own, there's no better time to step back and offer up some anime-related material worthy of your precious time, but probably only if you're open to animation.

For those looking into what the best anime has to offer maybe this short list will give you some ideas. This is THE SCI-FI FANATIC's edited take of the BEST 108 ANIME EVER as extracted from the now defunct ANIME INSIDER #11.I'll offer some brief assessments.

GenCon 2013 Photos, Part 1 of 6: Costume Contest Winners

This weekend our starstruck hometown of Indianapolis hosted the 46th edition of GenCon, one of America's oldest and largest gaming conventions. Be it RPGs, tabletop games, TCGs, dice games, family board games, or (a smattering of) video games, your gaming preferences are tended to at GenCon. Try a new game, pick up supplies for your current campaigns, spar with gamers from other lands, or just wander the premises and soak in as much as you can.

Attendance in 2012 exceeded 40,000 -- not quite DragonCon numbers and a far cry from the San Diego Comic Con, but it's certainly one of Indy's largest annual downtown events (GenCon is gunning for your title, FFA Expo), consuming not only the entirety of our Indiana Convention Center but conference rooms and miscellaneous spaces in several nearby hotels and other unused commercial structures. For four days every year, GenCon is everywhere downtown.

Anime Insider: 50 Best Anime Series

As I slowly get myself back on track I thought I'd deliver one more anime post for those looking to educate themselves on some of the best options out there within the genre.

Unfortunately, this is yet another odd, random list from ANIME INSIDER #18 (2005).I'm not exactly sure what the operating variables were in their selection process for the 50 BEST ANIME SERIES. For me personally a series denotes something with continuity or more than one. So, why would some full-length feature films make their list and not others?It's a completely bizarre assembly of the best and certainly defies logic, but I thought I would give that list to you in the event you were looking for a starting point on films or series despite the ANIME INSIDER's complete disregard for the English language while I strategize on more robust future posts. I've edited the list to try and note this Sci-Fi Fanatic's highlights.This is a small complement to the previous ANIME INSIDER BEST ANIME EVER post .

My Anatomy of a Good Fighting Scene

DISCLAIMER: I'm not a professional critique or a high rated director of action films. All stuff that I'll mention here are purely my opinion and mostly not based on any studies in film and audio visual arts but on over a hundred action movies that I watched, which served as my reference materials.

I've watched a lot of action movies that I developed a strict taste when it comes to watching them. To some extent, I tend to bypass the story or lack thereof once I see the fighting scenes. Not that I'm saying it is unnecessary to have an engaging plot to create a good action movie, but if the production claims that its movie belongs to the action genre, then they have to deliver violence in its most entertaining form. I don't think that you can label an action movie as an action movie without any fighting scenes in it. With this, here's my take on what I think are the elements of a good fighting scene.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Gunka no Blatzar: Historical Fiction Par Excellence

It's about time that I post another anime article on this site.My dear readers might know that historical fiction stands as one of my favorite genres.Hence, Alexandre Dumas is my favorite author, and Rurouni Kenshin stands as my favorite anime.So, I found myself delighted to discover such a detail-oriented, beautifully drawn, and character driven manga as Gunka no Baltzar.The last quality is always a huge plus for me, and I hope that someone turns Michitsune Nakajima's riveting manga into an anime in the near future.

The story is set in a fictional 19th century Europe where the countries are renamed, but parallels are easy to draw.For example, I am certain that Wei en (it's so much fun to use the German double s) is Prussia, Baselland Bavaria, and the Ezreich Republic the Austro-Hungarian Empire.Wei en is competing with the Ezreich Republic for an alliance with Baselland, which introduces much intrigue into the plot.The countrie's two princes represent the factions, with the King being influenced by a criminal mastermind and Ezreichian diplomat and the titular character, Bernd Baltzar, holding the ear of the second prince.The king wishes to keep the status quo, while the second prince, even though he loves the traditions of Baselland, wishes to modernize.Both want to ensure that Baselland remains autonomous.All these factors create a thrilling atmosphere of realpolitik, which is actually similar to the Bakumatsu period of Japanese history (1853-1867).

Cosplayer: Men Turned Cartoons and Cartoons Turned Men

Cosplayer Hatsune Miku

Noticed those flawless skinned anime characters in your favorite manga series like Amuro Rei of Gundam, or Bayonetta, or Cloud in Final Fantasy. How about the trio rocket team of Pokemon? They are all anime characters. But not anymore with Cosplays birth.

Please Get Loud When the Piano Gets Loud: Otakon 2013

This year's Otakon was its 20th anniversary, and as expected of the staff they brought out the big guns, with names such as Watanabe Shinichirou, Kanno Yohko, and Seki Tomokazu. As with every year, one of the biggest strengths and weaknesses of Otakon is that there's too much to do, and it leaves me feeling both satisfied and a bit disappointed.

For one thing, I didn't get to see the Space Dandy trailer.

Otakon 2013: Guests

When I was at this year I noticed that the Japanese guests were doing more to engage with the American guests during their panels and this Otakon continued that trend. I did not go to a panel were the guest did not have some amazingly wonderful tidbit to share with the audience that would make anyone who did not attend the panel green with envy. The guest brought with them everything from exclusive trailers and never seen before videos to original art that was on display for the attendees. That was a wonderful set of treats that went above and beyond. It made the already special panels extremely memorable.

I don't know how many more Otakon introductions I can write where I say they pulled out all the stops for the guest list this year. But here I am once again because it can't be stated enough. My hat is off and has been off ever since they started their announcements and I couldn't put it back on again until now.

Which is Better

Have you ever judged a book by its movie or vice versa?

Many of our did and this what we had to say: