This was going to be First Impressions but since episode 4s are already starting to appear I figured Hot Takes would be better. I thought there wouldn’t be much worth watching this season beyond the sequels, but then I watched a whole bunch of the new anime and I turned out to be basically completely correct. But hey, at least those sequels are pretty good. Although if I’ve missed anything then please do let me know.
Welcome to one of The Cart Driver’s fabled anime season previews, spring 2017 edition. Just 6 more until I’ve been doing these for a full 10 years. Yup, this site aint over until I’ve stopped posting these. Yes I know technically the first episode of the new My Hero Academia has already aired, but that’s just a sequel. We’re here for all those juicy new anime, like….ummm….which sequels are airing again?
That’s unfair, there are a few mildly interesting looking things, and every season sneaks in a little Tanya the Evil surprise here and there. Let’s roll through them all, shall we?
What’s this? A week without having to write 10-15 pages on Rome’s assimilation of the Gauls, or the colonialist causes of the Congolese Civil War? I guess that means I can finally write about good anime and not feel totally burned out on the writing process.
And 3gatsu really is a good anime. It manages to have emotional weight without resorting to needless melodrama, the art direction is effective, and the pathos behind the characters is presented in a way that emphasizes a myriad of struggles and how they drive the characters forward. Unfortunately, the way the show introduces that frowny fuck up there almost made me give up on the show after the first episode. Read More
When your anime watching is restricted to what you can view when you are on public transport, some anime fall by the wayside. Acca? Stylish political intrigue with adults that I once caught the ticket inspector pausing by me to check out. Little Witch Academia? Wholesome family cartoon that is maybe a little weird for a grown man to watch but whatever. Scum’s Wish? Let’s try catch up on that another time, shall we?
I have a perhaps naive belief in the power of comedy to say something. Through the disarming capabilities of comedy you can push past barriers that you could only otherwise cover in the gravest of tones. It’s why I try to argue against the belief that comedy is some kind of mysterious thing where enjoyment and taste can’t be broken down and explained why. It may be dry and dull to explain a joke, but I’m a critic so that’s what I do. It’s because of this belief in the depth of comedy that I despair at so-called “random” comedy. Where the joke is entirely in the construction and not in the meaning.
Or to put it another way, I feel very depressed that common anime fandom opinion is that Nichijou is a comedy classic and Watamote was some forgotten, briefly popular thing.
First of all, I’m not writing for MyAnimeList anymore. They stopped their featured articles thing because I guess it wasn’t bringing in enough hits. So now I need to get back into the habit of blogging frequently again (unless anyone else wants to hire me to write articles for them *hint hint*) and not let my mostly-formed articles sit in my brain, never to be written. In an attempt to get back to writing regularly again I figured now was a good time to bring back the old monthly roundup posts since there are a bunch of shockingly good anime this season and I wanted to say something about them.
Welcome back to A Day with The Cart Driver anime podcast, where two married weebs bicker about anime. Myself and Day from GAR GAR Stegosaurus are back with season 3, because it’s been a long enough break since the last episode that introducing a new season feels in order. This time we’ll be talking about the winter anime season, where we spend a significant chunk of it talking around Tanya the Evil before we can finally take no more.
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I’d like to start this Hand Shakers post by talking about something tenuously related instead. This is both to promote that thing and kind of explain why I find this show’s incompetence compelling. There’s a little known (at least outside of the Chinese market) 2013 film called Switch, an Andy Lau-driven hybrid of Mission Impossible and James Bond that manages to litter every moment with bizarre (at best) directorial decisions and hilariously transparent Chinese nationalism. Character motivations change at the drop of a hat, scenes appear out of nowhere thanks to a mix of poor transitions and even poorer writing, and the villain is a bleach-blonde, Oedipal yakuza named Yamamoto whose evil lairs (yes, he has two) are littered with fetus motifs and skulls.
What saves it from being unwatchable is the fascinatingly awful set design (nearly everywhere, including an umbrella museum, has strobe lights) and the wonderfully unconvincing CG. The sound design is also strange—I watched it once with a state of the art sound system, and every other minute the speakers emitted a low rumble that shook the room, even if there were just two characters talking over mimosas. If you ever get the chance to see it, I heartily recommend it—just bring friends and/or booze. My point is that Hand Shakers is the Switch of anime—gaudy, incoherent, and fun to laugh at for these qualities. Read More