Gugure! Kokkuri-san Review

kokkuriStory:
Kohina thinks she’s doll. A doll who is obsessed with ramen to an inhuman degree. One day she makes the mistake of trying to summon Kokkuri-san in a game. Turns out the fox spirit can’t stand to see children all alone and thus begins Kohina’s days living under the same roof as an ancient youkai.

Violence:
There’s a ton of slap-stick comedy in this show so expect to see a lot of nose bleeds and injuries from fantastical stunts. None of it is serious, but it’s not something that’s rare in this one either…

Language:
We get a few b-words between the youkai, but often it stops at d-mn or sh-t.

Nudity:
The youkai have a few scenes of shirtlessness (while in male form) and there is one instance of a male turning into a female with a large chest. The usual jokes and remarks are made. Also, one of the youkai is a womanizer. It is mentioned often and there are multiple scenes of him being a grade A creeper, like plotting to look up girls’ skirts. Most of it is just talk, but the implications aren’t nice. Another uncomfortable element is one youkai’s crush on the VERY young girl lead. It’s something that almost made me drop the show. That said, the other characters don’t see it as normal and it is treated like a joke. Still… it’s unnerving that anyone would find that kind of thing funny to begin with…

Theology/mythology:
Youkai.  If you aren’t chill with ’em, skip this. Also, there are stories of spirits being left behind and such (aka ghosts). So yeah, very supernatural based story here.

Personal impression:
This was a show I started to watch back when it was first airing. As you can guess, it was dropped after only a handful of episodes. As per usual, I’ve only finished this show due to it’s availability on an easier to use platform (Yahoo View). And also because it got funnier as the series went on. Thank goodness.
I’m going to admit right here that this series really takes its time finding a good setup. But once it finds its own comedy, it gets pretty darn great. Around episode 6 or 7 the cast evens out and the jokes start landing. From alien classmates to Kokkuri-san worrying about hair loss, this show actually made me laugh quite a bit during the last half of its run.
That said, I’m still unsure if I’d recommend this show. Taking that long to find your rhythm isn’t a good first impression, plus there’s all that shady business with one of the youkai making creepy pedophile comments about the lead (who’s still in grade school).
Overall, I’d say skip towards the middle of the show to see if it’s your jam. And if not… well, there’s quite a mix of other comedy anime out there without pedophile materials-
…..Actually… now that I think about it…. All the big titles kinda have at least one pedo character…. Uuuh… well… that’s a topic for another day I guess.

Personal rating: Young adult

Episodes: 12
Languages: sub
Official rating: TV14
Genres: Fantasy, comedy
Production: TMS Entertainment
Company: Sentai Filmworks
Official streaming: Yahoo View

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Fuse: Memoirs of the Hunter Girl Review

fusetitleStory:
A young huntress from the mountain journeys to the city to find herself unwillingly roped into chasing and killing the Fuse, supernatural creatures that can look human and suck the life out of others. But the Fuse might not be nearly as different from humans as they are said to be.

Violence:
The worse part of this show is probably sitting right in this section. The hunt of a wolf at the very beginning of the movie is pretty graphic for a PG13 title, but it’s a good indication of the violence levels for the rest of the show. The Fuse are often beheaded, the heads displayed for all to see, complete with flies buzzing around them. If the violence levels of Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex really put you off, this is a title to skip for sure. Also, there’s a bit of a trigger warning concerning the mention of babies and female prostitutes being killed in a ditch in the red light district, often as suicides.

Languages:
The classics are all here, the d-mns, sh-ts and b-words. Not every word, but not non-existent either.

Nudity:
Another trigger here is the red light district, where prostitutes sell themselves. We don’t see too much actual nudity, but a lot is implied (for obvious reasons). We see shadows of two people coupling for a few seconds and the presence of children in these places is very unsettling.

Theology/mythology:
Gods aren’t discussed much in the show, but the Fuse are indeed supernatural and human hybrids. There are implications that they were born of a super wolf and human coupling. This isn’t confirmed, however. Also, the Fuse seem to live off the souls of humans. Take from that what you will, but if these things bug you, this movie isn’t for you.

Personal impression:
I enjoyed this movie quite a bit, oddly enough. The violence is a bit much, even for me, however, which keeps this show from the top anime slots in my mind. Also, as some reviewers have mentioned, this show is pretty blunt on the idea of not killing animals for sport and such. The agenda to show how human animals are (and how animalistic humans can be) is pretty blunt.
Even so, the ending isn’t cliche, though I feared more than once that it would be. The characters are interesting enough to hold interest and you honestly root for the heroes to win out in the end.
The art is a bit odd in places, but fits the show well. As does the music. My only serious critique being that the characters aren’t really explored as well as they might. But considering this is all crammed into a single movie, I’m willing to give quite a bit of leeway there.
If you like fantasy and action, with quite a bit of social commentary drama along the way, this movie is a great watch. Just don’t expect a perfect ending here. Or too much historical accuracy, come to think of it (feudal Japan didn’t have hand cannons for hunters).

Personal rating: Young adult

Episodes: Movie
Languages: Sub
Official rating: PG13
Genre(s): Fantasy, drama
Company: TMS Entertainment
Legal streaming: Hulu
Screenshots:
f1 f2 f3

The Pilot’s Love Song Review

[The following review is a Guest Review by author and programer BlackWater]

Story:
The floating island Isla sets out on a journey for the End of the Sky. One of the pilot trainees that enlists for the journey is Kal-el Albus, who is hiding a very important secret. Accompanying him is one of his sisters from his adoptive family as well as a score of fellow trainees. One of the nobles living on the island, Claire Cruz, catches Kal-el’s eye when he runs into her one day. But as Nina Viento, one-time controller of wind, leads this voyage into unexpected aerial fights, they find themselves struggling just to survive.

Violence:
This is where the show earns most of its rating. Being in battle against other factions means that there is quite a bit of violence and injury. There are some minor things such as punching between the “good” guys but the real stuff comes with the dogfights in the air. Bullets are exchanged, planes blow up, people die, and a guy loses a hand. Some scenes may be disturbing even when they don’t show too much simply because the show portrays battles more realistically – with sudden and bone-chilling death. You might want to pass it up if blood, death, and a lost hand make you uneasy.

Language:
Nothing you wouldn’t come to expect in a war-related show. You have the typical series of d-amns and sprinkled b-words. There is at least one moment where a character repeats one of these over and over due to the severity of the situation.

Nudity:
Nothing. No, really. This show is too focused on war and drama to care about this. The most that can be said is that there is an episode where everyone is at the beach in swimsuits and another where a couple characters have to wear blankets while their clothes dry. Nothing is ever shown.

Theology/mythology:
Not too much here besides the usual girl-priestess-witch-possible-goddess thing. One of the primary characters used to have these magical-like powers over the wind and is basically portrayed as the spiritual leader of the people. It doesn’t get extreme with any worship or deep theology, though.
The general concept of doing something wrong and “sinning” is used on occasion, though it bears no weight outside of characters feeling bad about themselves. Some lessons about forgiveness are pushed pretty hard through the story and plot, especially at the end.
Also, the show leans heavily on this myth that the world was created from this broken flagstone or what have you and they reinforce this with the unusual setup of their planet. In other words, typical fantasy fare.

Personal impression:
It’s like a hybrid. You’ve got the love story but you’ve also got this serious war and death. I found the mixture to not work very well because of several reasons. One, the war part distracted from the love part, which left the latter half-baked and even forgotten through some part of the show. Second, vise versa. It felt like the war sections were missing something, but maybe that was just because we’re kept in the dark about a lot of information regarding the fights and what’s really going on. Think of the good guys as the Allied forces in World War 2 and the enemy as Nazis…except you’re not told they’re Nazis and you don’t know anything about them. The plot builds into the idea of multiple nations and even throws in an alliance at one part but never gives much more for the enemy than “they don’t want us here.” This may or may not have to do with the light novel and manga that exist out there, but that has little bearing on newcomers to this show.
Before I wrap up, I must mention something else that myself as well as some other viewers have felt. The show looks to be kind of like Last Exile on the outside and some of the backgrounds could even swap between the shows. The world itself is a pretty interesting place and gives the opportunity for a really interesting story. But all that promise seems to fall a little…flat. There’s just too much vanilla in there for my taste because the developments are predictable, the characters are cookie-cutter, the plot about the main characters both being royalty is extra cliche, and nothing really happens that makes me desperate for the next episode.
Don’t get me wrong. It’s not a bad watch but it’s just not a spectacular one either. You might want want to skip it over unless you don’t have any other shows you’re interested in. Or you just want to see some planes blow up.

Personal rating: Young Adult

Episodes: 13
Languages: Sub
Official rating: TV14
Genre(s): Adventure, fantasy
Company: TMS Entertainment
Legal streaming: Crunchyroll
Screenshots:
 photo pls1_zps4c7dd074.jpg photo pls3_zpse3258617.jpg photo pls2_zpsf2dc87a2.jpg

[Review by BlackWater]