ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept. Review

accaStory:
Jean works for ACCA, a system made up of thirteen different districts united under one organization for peace and prosperity. Jean’s job is to monitor these districts and ensure everything is running as it should. But soon rumors of a coup d’etat begin to swirl around the nation…

Violence:
Pretty low. That said, at least one or two people get shot at or stabbed in this show, but it’s not focused on at all and the scenes go by quickly.

Language:
Another tame sector. Aside from a few cases of the b-word, we’re pretty clear. Enough to push it just beyond the 10+ age rating for me though…

Nudity:
We get a solid pass on this one. In fact, there’s no nudity at all. It’s pretty awesome.

Theology/mythology:
Don’t have to worry over this one. There’s pretty much no religion or religious items to speak of in this show.

Personal impression:
This is one heck of a slow burn. In fact, it’s the slowest burn I’ve ever seen. That said, unlike other shows with a laid back attitude, I feel like this show actually… did it correctly. The tone fit in perfectly with Jean’s personal style and kept the show amazingly realistic. Even the climax of the show fit the overall tone.
Now, does that mean this was an amazing show? Well, that depends. If you like political drama, this show is pretty much perfect. It handles the idea of peaceful coup d’etats wonderfully, making each sector unique and both their desires for and fear of change realistic.
All that said, the show takes a long time not only letting the audience in on what’s really going on, but also letting the main character in on it. It doesn’t help that our lead is so emotionally distant either. It might have helped if we saw a bit more to humanize our lead early on, making us legit care about why this guy is getting caught up in things. Might have made me worry about it more, upping the tension. As it was, I never felt worried about the characters. Everything felt too… chill for that. Even when assassinates get involved, everything is played out in such a laid back manner that it’s hard to feel true concern. Which ends up being this show’s largest weakness: it’s just too emotionally distant.
Again, if you like political drama, especially the kind that steers clear of violence, this might be for you. It also has some pretty snazzy art and nice music. Just be warned that this show is the anime equivalent of watching embers burn. In fact, I think that was the name for one of the episodes…

Personal rating: Young adult

Episodes: 12
Language: sub
Official rating: TV14
Genre: Drama
Production: Madhouse
Company: Bandai Visual
Official streaming: Crunchyroll

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Wolf Children Review

a13862-791722162-1323905458Story:
Hana is a single mother of two… well, wolf children. After losing her husband in an accident, she must learn how to care for these mythical children of hers all on her own, despite being a normal human herself.

Violence:
There are some scenes showing both death and injury. Blood isn’t avoided. This said, the movie’s point isn’t fighting so it only occurs once or twice and isn’t focused on too much. Still, those scenes would likely scare very young viewers…

Language:
Pretty tame stuff. Only a few sh-ts and whatnot here and there.

Nudity:
We don’t really see much in the way of outright nudity, but we do have one scene where it’s very clear that two adults are going to have sex. Nothing is shown and the scene blacks out, but it’s no mystery what’s going to happen.

Theology/mythology:
This show focuses around a family born from a wolf/human. If the idea of creatures (or humans) shifting forms disturbs you, this movie isn’t for you. Especially as one of the major themes for this show is the differences and similarities between man and beast.

Personal impression: 
This is an amazing animation. From the facial expressions to the dialog, the settings and music… all of it was extremely well handled. There’s good reason why this show has been up for so many awards.
That being said, if I had to nit-pick, there were a few instances that were frustrating to watch as someone who deals with children herself. Japan has very different views on discipline than I tend to and thus it can be irritating to see these kids grow up so… well, selfish. We don’t really see them disciplined at all and it shows by the end.
Even so, the main point of this movie for me was the mother, Hana, and her fight to come to terms with both the world she must live in and the duality of her children.
So long as you aren’t allergic to bittersweet endings (or lack of constant action), this is a wonderful film and I quite recommend it.

Personal rating: Young adult

Episodes: 1 (movie)
Languages: sub and dub
Offical rating: PG13
Genres: Fantasy, drama
Production: Madhouse
Company: FUNimation
Official streaming: n/a

Prince of Stride: Alternative Review

pos_coverStory:
Nana and Takeru really want to reboot their school’s stride club, a sport for running complex relays. But first they have to convince one more schoolmate to join and he’s not keen on joining anything.

Violence:
We get a few falls that end in broken bones and such, but we’re spared any blood baths. Which is amazing considering how dangerous this stride thing is. Just sayin’.

Language:
D-mns and sh-ts are pretty much the extent on this one. It’s not super common, so I feel like this show can afford a gentler rating. A nice change.

Nudity:
Besides some shirtless scenes for the guys and one of the teammates having a thing for feeling up people’s legs (to see if they would be good runners), nothing to put in here.

Theology/mythology:
Besides the usual temples here and there in the background as well as some philosophical stuff about emotions and connecting to each other through sports, this section is clear as well.

Personal impression:
This show is pretty… flatlined? It kinda reminded me of Flying Witch. Not that it’s slow. It’s really not. There’s the running and some jokes and lots of dialog and whatnot. Stuff is going on constantly. It’s just not all that… gripping. I did have moments of this series that were quite enjoyable (the growing friendships some of the team has with competing teams was refreshing), I never felt like I needed to see the next episode when one ended. It just… was there. I probably would have dropped this show all together if not for Crunchyroll having so many technical issues that I’ve had to go elsewhere (including the new Yahoo View) to watch anime, thus having less selection than usual (good news: CR is working on and off again so I am still getting into this season’s stream. It’s just slow moving).
The music is forgettable and the art is barely passing. Which is also what I feel towards this… “sport.” But the characters are overall pleasant and we get to avoid any romance angles, which is a nice enough break for a show with a single female lead. If you need something to pass time or need a break from more intense shows, this is a good one. It’s not slow. It’s just not.. spellbinding. Which isn’t the worst criticism I’ve given out.

Personal rating: 10+

Episodes: 12
Languages: sub and dub
Official rating: PG
Genre: Drama, sports, slice of life
Company: Kadokawa/FUNimation
Production: Madhouse
Official streaming: Yahoo View