Hiiro No Kakera Review

Hiiro-no-Kakera-hiiro-no-kakera-32777150-500-494Story:
Tamaki comes to a small village to live with her grandma for awhile, only to find she’s really a reincarnation/descendant of some ancient princess/shrine maiden whose fate is to guard/seal away a demonic sword which was actually from the gods but they don’t like it either and if it activates they get bent out of shape because anime. There are also magical items to collect and a homunculus with big boobs because this totally wasn’t a game first or anything.

Violence:
I admit to being a bit surprised this show had the backbone to show blood at all, but it does remain minimal. Cuts and drops coming from the mouth, but no loss of limbs or the more extreme stuff found in other YA action shows.

Language:
Another tame sector. Sh-t and d-mns are the worst it ever gets and it’s not too common.

Nudity:
Aside from some ol’ fashioned shoujo candy (bare chested guys) here and there, nothing to report.

Theology/mythology:
Demons, reincarnated animal god things (usually these would be yokai, but I felt that wasn’t always the case this time. Think this one is a mixed bag) and super powers galore in this title. There’s even a hint of lore about the world’s creation, though that doesn’t seem to play a big role in the plot. But the demons and powers being passed down the generations bit? That’s unavoidable. Oh and there’s the homunculus thing, a reincarnated body, pushed into the story near the end, just in case physics and science in this world weren’t convoluted enough for you.

Personal impression:
If you’ve been craving a shine maiden must seal evil power away and is guarded by a group of mostly arrogant and stereotypical pretty boys anime, here ya go. That’s all this show is, really. I mean, points for them trying a bit harder than some, what with some pretty heavy lore being dragged around here and there, but overall? Nothing to be noted here outside the usual RPG game stuff. Even the music sounds a bit too game-like at times. The boss battle music is particularly cringe worthy.
The art is a bit hit and miss as some frames will have very sloppy hands and arms that were clearly done by a small, cheap, side studio last minute and the script is pretty much the same deal. A few moments showcase solid dialog, but it gets ruined quickly by massive plot holes, characters with either no motivation or ambitions so shallow that the tiniest amount of light will dry it up in seconds, and outright murders being pushed under a rug because “there was no other way.” Like, seriously? There were multiple murders and we’re just supposed to shrug and move on? The criminals are still around and free too. Aren’t we going to, like, arrest them or something?
Overall this show is mediocre at best, but the romance is sorta concluded so it has that over a lot of other anime. Oh wait, did I mention that the main conflict in the entire show disappears at the end because of a “wish?” Like, really, the entire point of the show is blown out of the water at the end. So why did I watch this again? What was the point? Stand up to your grandma? Pretty sure that’s all the lead ends up learning.

Personal rating: Young adult

Episodes: 26 (seasons 1 & 2)
Languages: sub
Official rating: TV14
Genre: Action, drama, fantasy, supernatural
Production: Studio Deen
Company: YTV
Official streaming: Crunchyroll

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Nyanko Days Reviews

nyanko-daysStory:
Konagai Tomoko is a shy girl who owns three cats. She meets a popular girl who owns a cat. They become friends. The “cats” are chibi cat girls. That’s it. That’s all there is. How in the world was this funded again?

Violence:
None.

Language:
None.

Nudity:
None. The “cats” are tiny cat girls, but we’re spared anything gross or sexualizing. Although what with the whole loli thing, it’s hard to tell sometimes…

Theology/mythology:
Aside from cat girls (a thing which is never explained), nothing here.

Personal impression:
This whole series is around a half hour long grand total. It has no plot. There is no point. The characters aren’t horrid, but they aren’t good either. I can see this mini series as existing for two reasons. 1) Filler between other shows airing on TV or 2) promos to get a full series deal. Regardless, it seems like a real waste of money. No matter how short a show is, it still takes money to make it and I just don’t understand how this little thing could make up its own production costs. Especially when, due to having no actual story, it’s so forgettable.
Of course, if you need something cute and kid friendly and non-offensive (generally), this show is just fine. It’s rare for me to be able to mark a show as All Ages, so woowho for that. But besides those reasons…. this show has nothing unique to offer. Unless you love watching cute cat girls. Like a lot.

Personal rating: All Ages

Episodes: 12 (episodes are 2 mins long)
Languages: sub
Official rating: n/a
Genre: Cute things, slice of life
Production: EMT Squared
Company: YTV
Official streaming: crunchyroll

The Morose Mononokean Review

moroseStory:
Hanae just wants to have a normal, fun life as a high schooler, but when he accidentally steps on a yokai, everything changes. Suddenly he can see yokai everywhere and they aren’t what he thought they were. Oh and he may have been hired to be an assistant for an exorcist. So much for joining a school club.

Violence:
Characters are threatened to be injured and there are a few scary scenes, but no real violence comes upon any of the characters, thus keeping this show reasonably tame.

Language:
Aside from some sh-ts and such, another tame section.

Nudity:
None to speak of.

Theology/mythology:
If the idea of yokai bothers you, just straight up skip this title. Aside from that, there’s also a shrine or two and one yokai that is seen as a “god.” No conversations about worship or whatnot, but if any of this makes you uncomfortable, this isn’t the show for you.

Personal impression:
I’ve been so spoiled by shows like Natsume and xxxHolic, that shows like this are just kinda… there.
That isn’t to say this series was bad, parse. It’s not. It has decent characters, some cute themes and the art and music are consistent. But nothing is spectacular. In fact, it remains rather average all the way through. Even the overall plot remains standard. No darker enemy changes the “issue of the day” structure and the big “climax” to the show resolves itself with little effort.
If you enjoy yokai centered stories, cute shows with little on the line and buddy “comedy” set ups, this might be your ticket. But if you find this a little too straight forward and bland, give the above mentioned shows a go.

Personal rating: 10+

Episodes: 12
Languages: Sub
Official rating: TV14
Genres: supernatural, fantasy, comedy
Company: Yomiuri Telecasting Corp  (YTV)
Official streaming: Crunchyroll

Wolf Girl and Black Prince Review

wolfgirlStory:
Embarrassed that she doesn’t have a boyfriend, Erika makes a snap decision one day to lie about being in a relationship with a hot guy she took a picture of one day. Unfortunately for her, this boy, Sata, happens to go to her school. And when he gets roped into the lie, Erika finds out the hard way that appearances can be deceiving.

Violence:
Nothing too over-the-top, just the usual slap-stick injuries that go away reasonable quick. Some scraps here and there.

Language:
Occasional b-words and sh-ts. Nothing unusual for a TV14 show.

Nudity:
Nothing beyond bath scenes where no detail is shown. Some comments about sex here and there, nothing explicit though.

Theology/mythology:
Beyond the shrine being around, nothing here to mention. As per usual, Japan never feels the need to explain its religion, so no discussion takes place.

Personal impression:
Considering my take on Amnesia and Say “I Love You,” my reaction to this little abusive gem should come as no surprise. In fact, I nearly bunked this in the Warning Zone as the relationship in this show is so very bad. But first things first, what actually occurs in this show? Well, as my brief summery reveals, the MC is pretty much indebted to this male character who isn’t a good guy. In fact, he’s pretty evil. Not wanting to be caught lying to her friends (which aren’t much better than her “boyfriend,” to be honest), the MC gets blackmailed into being her “boyfriend’s” dog. That’s right, she’s treated as an animal who is loyal even in the face of abuse. And I don’t say this lightly. In fact, this guy actually admits as much very early on, saying how she can’t run from him no matter how bad he treats her. The show blazingly tries to push this off as a way to feel sorry for this abusive character, as if to say, “look how lonely he is.” But his isolation is a direct result of his behavior. Sata is an abuser. He wants control over everything in his life, right down to the people around him. He delights in watching others suffer on his terms and can’t stand to see the MC happy outside of his terms. He constantly belittles and isolates the MC, resorting to violence when other males get near her. When she reaches a breaking point and nearly leaves him, he then turns nice, often just long enough to claim her as “his” again before leaving her alone once more.
Considering how many people I know who have been in abusive relationships, this show was near traumatizing for me to watch. I kept thinking the heroine would leave, but it only grew worse.
If this show allowed the heroine to leave her abuser at the end, this would be a well executed and very realistic show on abuse, showing why so many tend fall for abusers and how they end up staying for so long. But as it stands, this show is pushing off this couple as legit and we are meant to pity the abuser, a damaging message to send.
If you always wondered how smart girls get tricked into staying with abusers, this is actually a good show to watch to understand why (just check out the many commentors who sympathize with the abuser). But if you want a good ending, you will not find it here. Just a sad story of abuse pushed off as a romance.

Personal rating: Young adult

Episodes: 12
Languages: Sub
Official rating: TV14
Genre(s): Romance, drama, comedy
Company: Yomiuri Telecasting Corporation (YTV)
Official streaming: Crunchyroll