Spring 2015

Baby Steps 2nd Season

Pierrot
25 episodes · TV Completed
8.01

After having decided to play tennis at the professional level, Eiichirou Maruo now needs to convince his parents to support his decision. To do so, he makes a wager: if he cannot win the All-Japan Junior Tennis Tournament, he will give up on his dream. However, he will need to improve his skills quickly if he wants to qualify for the tournament and have any chance of defeating the best players in the country. For this reason, his new coach Ryuuhei Aoi suggests that Eiichirou travel abroad to train at the Florida Tennis Academy.

Baby Steps 2nd Season takes the action to America as Eiichirou begins his two-week training program, getting a taste of what tennis is like outside of Japan. With this exciting experience awaiting him, Eiichirou hopes that his training will get him closer to his goal of becoming a professional player.

Synopsis

“Baby Steps 2nd Season” continues the journey of Eiichiro Maruo, an honors student who takes a plunge into the world of tennis. Initially using the sport as a means to improve his health, Eiichiro quickly becomes enamored with the strategic depth and personal challenge tennis presents. Through rigorous training, detailed note-taking, and a scientific approach, he hopes to stand on equal footing with the best players across the globe. As he gains more skill and knowledge, Eiichiro finds himself balancing his goals with his school work, relationships, and the trials inherent to the competitive world of professional tennis.

This season delves further into the mechanics of the game, the relationships between players, and Eiichiro’s continued evolution both on and off the court. Tensions rise as he participates in multiple tournaments, each with their unique set of challenges, and takes on opponents that push him to his mental and physical limits. As Eiichiro’s life becomes increasingly intertwined with the world of tennis, he seeks to evolve into a player capable of competing on a global scale.

Review: Baby Steps 2nd Season

Ladies and gentlemen, if you have been on the hunt for an anime that expertly combines sports, education, and character development, your search ends at “Baby Steps 2nd Season”. The second season kicks off with a bang, diving headfirst into a narrative that is both intense and thought-provoking.

While Eiichiro’s scientific approach to tennis remains a unique and integral part of the series, this season expands its focus to encompass a larger picture, paying careful attention to the mechanics of the game and the psychology of its players. From the strategic planning of shots to the mental toughness required during high-stakes matches – it’s educational, enthralling, and engaging. With such a faithful representation of the sport, renting, buying, or streaming this season will feel like you’ve purchased a prime ticket to a gripping tennis match, with some heartfelt drama sprinkled in for good measure.

The characters are where this anime really steals the show. Eiichiro’s growth as a character is realistic, gradual, and, most importantly, relatable. His relationship with Natsu, in particular, is handled beautifully, offering heartwarming moments that provide a refreshing change of pace. Supporting characters also have their time in the spotlight, adding depth to the tennis universe that Baby Steps creates.

The animation style, lavish in its detail, brings Eiichiro’s thought processes into sharp focus. It’s through this detail you appreciate how his approach to tennis is distinctive from his peers. The meticulous diagrams and schematics Eiichiro uses to understand the game he loves are nothing short of mesmerizing.

In a nutshell, “Baby Steps 2nd Season” is a well-rounded series that will certainly prove a worthwhile investment for fans of sports anime. Its treatment of character development is overwhelming and it makes the sport it represents exciting and enticing. So, if you haven’t yet dived into the tennis world of Baby Steps, it’s about time you did.

Baby Steps 2nd Season
8.01 / 10 Reviewer
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 10 Users (0 votes)
Pros
Baby Steps 2nd Season delves deeper into character developments and relationships, while also focusing on exciting tennis action. The animation quality has improved from the first season, and the narrative remains engaging, lending a realistic touch to the characters' ambitions and challenges in the tennis matches.
Cons
The second season of Baby Steps is criticized for its slow pace and somewhat predictable storyline. Additionally, some viewers find the animation quality lacking in comparison to other sports anime.
Summary
In its second season, Baby Steps continues its thrilling blend of sports and coming-of-age drama. Protagonist Eiichirō Maruo’s journey evolves, demonstrating his growth not just as a tennis player, but as a person. Character development and real-life tennis strategies intersect perfectly, making Baby Steps Season 2 a must-watch for any anime and sports enthusiast.
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Diamond no Ace: Second Season

Madhouse, Production I.G
51 episodes · TV Completed
8.30

After the National Tournament, the Seidou High baseball team moves forward with uncertainty as the Fall season quickly approaches. In an attempt to build a stronger team centered around their new captain, fresh faces join the starting roster for the very first time. Previous losses weigh heavily on the minds of the veteran players as they continue their rigorous training, preparing for what will inevitably be their toughest season yet.

Rivals both new and old stand in their path as Seidou once again climbs their way toward the top, one game at a time. Needed now more than ever before, Furuya and Eijun must be determined to pitch with all their skill and strength in order to lead their team to victory. And this time, one of these young pitchers may finally claim that coveted title: "The Ace of Seidou."




The Anime Critic

Diamond no Ace: Second Season Synopsis

Inspiring, thrilling, and downright entertaining, the anime we’re about to deep dive into today is none other than Diamond no Ace: Second Season. This well designed sports anime throws light on the factors that make or break an athlete. The plot revolves around our beloved protagonist, Eijun Sawamura, who is a middle school baseball pitcher, aiming to become his team’s ace player. School life gets coupled with a competitive environment as Sawamura, along with his catcher and best friend Kazuya Miyuki, pull together the disparate members of Seidou High School’s baseball team.

Diamond no Ace: Second Season picks from where it left in the previous season as we witness the struggles and victories, tears and laughter of Sawamura and his team. The barriers they must overcome are nothing less than what every sportsperson faces – high stakes, arduous training, personal insecurities, competitive rivalries, and the inevitable fear of failure. These young budding athletes also navigate through friendship, rivalry, and teamwork, giving a holistic and realistic portrayal of not just sport, but life itself.

Diamond no Ace: Second Season Review

Diamond no Ace: Second Season is not simply about pitching a fast ball or scoring a home run, it’s about the grit and determination that make someone an ace in the true sense. It brilliantly tutors you about struggle, improvement, perseverance, and teamwork. Creating a balance between every aspect, the show doesn’t lose its heart, keeping the viewers always tied up with the plot.

Another aspect where Diamond no Ace truly shines is in character development. Sawamura as a protagonist is not simply “gifted” – he is flawed, he is impulsive yet he is passionate. As the series progresses, we can see our hot-headed, immature pitcher evolving into a responsible team player, a model for many in the field.

But this anime is not only for sports enthusiasts or baseball fans; it has equally engaging narratives about friendship, competition, hard work, and rivalry. And that’s why the series remains strong, maintaining its fantastic balance of storytelling and action on both the baseball diamond and off it.

The animation studio, Production I.G., has done an excellent job, presenting the baseball matches with phenomenal animation, making every pitch feel alive. The intricate detailing in scene craft and character designs provide a realistic recreation of intense sports action, which is a delight for anime fans. The stunning soundtrack furthers the adrenaline surge during the matches.

The voice casting too complements the animation splendidly. Every actor did justice to their characters, breathing life into them. The dialogues are witty, emotion-filled, and inspirational. You would find yourself cheering, laughing, and sometimes probably even shedding a tear or two with the characters.

If you are planning to rent, buy or stream anime, Diamond no Ace: Second Season is an enticing blend of a sports drama with in-depth character exploration and high-quality animation. But remember, Diamond no Ace: Second Season is not just for entertainment; it also gives you a peek into the discipline, dedication, and spirit that every sport requires. Enjoy watching!


Diamond no Ace: Second Season
8.30 / 10 Reviewer
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 10 Users (0 votes)
Pros
Diamond no Ace: Second Season offers a well-crafted plot with character development that extends beyond the main protagonist. The animation quality is excellent, and the baseball matches are engaging and detailed, adding authenticity and excitement to the series.
Cons
Some viewers found the pacing of Diamond no Ace: Second Season to be slow, particularly during the baseball matches. The character development also seemed lacking, with less exploration of the primary characters' personal stories and motivations.
Summary
The second season of Diamond no Ace elevates the series to another level, exploring the maturity of the main characters' baseball tactics and strategies. Full of intense competitiveness, camaraderie, and personal growth, this season of the baseball-centered anime keeps audiences engaged till the end. Its outstanding animation style and strong character arcs collaborate to deliver an emotionally stirring experience.
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Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works 2nd Season

ufotable
13 episodes · TV Completed
8.32

In the midst of the Fifth Holy Grail War, Caster sets her plans into motion, beginning with the capture of Shirou's Servant Saber. With the witch growing ever more powerful, Rin and Archer determine she is a threat that must be dealt with at once. But as the balance of power in the war begins to shift, the Master and Servant find themselves walking separate ways.

Meanwhile, despite losing his Servant and stumbling from injuries, Shirou ignores Rin's warning to abandon the battle royale, forcing his way into the fight against Caster. Determined to show his resolve in his will to fight, Shirou's potential to become a protector of the people is put to the test.

Amidst the bloodshed and chaos, the motivations of each Master and Servant are slowly revealed as they sacrifice everything in order to arise as the victor and claim the Holy Grail.

Introduction

Greetings Anime aficionados, it’s The Anime Critic here again, riding the waves of another epic anime journey. Buckle up because today, we are heading towards the realm of magic and heroism, analyzing the thrills within the ‘Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works 2nd Season.’ Whether you’ve been an ardent follower of the ‘Fate’ series or are venturing into this universe for the first time, this review promises to stir your interest whilst keeping it spoiler-free!

Story Synopsis

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works revolves around the mystical ‘Holy Grail War’ where mages partner with Heroic Spirits – legendary figures from history and mythology, to battle for the ultimate prize, the Holy Grail, which can grant any wish. Our protagonist, Rin Tohsaka, is a skilled mage who unknowingly summons her Servant, Archer. They battle other mages and Heroic Spirits which brings them in contact with a high school student, Shirou Emiya, who also becomes a Master in this deadly game by summoning his own Servant, Saber.

In the second season of Unlimited Blade Works, the narrative continues to dive deeper into the heart of the Holy Grail War, revealing secrets and mysteries that intricately tie the lives of the Servants and their Masters together. With revelations turning the tides and alliances shattering, the war escalates, bringing Shirou and Rin to face intense challenges and moral dilemmas. Will they succumb to the power of the Holy Grail or uphold their intrinsic values even if it means losing everything?

Review

Opening with a bang, the first thing you’ll notice is the striking animation quality that is honestly, a feast for the eyes. Unparalleled in scale and detailing, UFOTABLE studio brings the magic, the battles, and the characters to life in a fashion that is visually unmatchable. Whether it be the devastating attacks of the Servants or the quieter, thought-provoking moments between characters, the animation is a spectacular embodiment of the show’s spirit.

Here’s one for the seiyuu (voice acting) fans out there. The voice acting is another tour de force element in Unlimited Blade Works 2nd Season. The characterisation via their voices, musters a powerfully emotive experience that syncs perfectly with the visual spectacle on screen. Kudos to Noriaki Sugiyama (Shirou) and Kana Ueda (Rin) for their immersive performances that aided in rooting for the characters’ survival in this bloody spectacle.

The storyline in this second season becomes more complex and engaging, stirring tension and evoking profound feelings. Gripping plot twists, moral conflicts and the deepening of character narratives make for a narrative stew that keeps you hooked until the end. Those who have followed the Fate franchise will find riveting payoffs, as well as introduction of new elements keeping it fresh and engaging.

Many anime have great openings and endings, but gosh, the OSTs in Unlimited Blade Works are another level entirely! Both the opening and ending songs are stirring and compelling, adding vibrance to the narrative. The stirring ‘Brave Shine’ by Aimer is just fantastic and so is ‘Ring Your Bell’ by Kalafina. These tracks amplify the intense experience of the show with their emotional resonance.

Verdict

‘Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works 2nd Season’ is a lavish serving of striking visuals, dramatic story-telling, emotional depth, and exciting action. It takes the ensnarling web of the Holy Grail War and elevates it with thoroughly fleshed-out characters and a pulsating plot. A must-watch not only for Fate franchise fans, but for any anime enthusiast out there!

So whether you want to rent, buy or stream, ‘Fate/Stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works 2nd season’ is worth every cent and second. May the power of the Grail guide your viewing experience!

That’s your Anime Critic signing off until our next anime adventure… Stay animated, pals!

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works 2nd Season
8.32 / 10 Reviewer
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 10 Users (0 votes)
Pros
The second season of Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works offers improved character development and engrossing plot twists. The animation quality is exceptional and the high-paced action sequences are visually stunning.
Cons
The narrative flow of Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works 2nd Season often feels weighed down by dense dialogue and complex exposition. Furthermore, some character developments and plot twists can feel forced or predictable.
Summary
In Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works 2nd Season, viewers will dive back into the gripping world of mages and heroic spirits. Incredible animation blends with a complex, character-driven storyline to create an engaging experience for anime fans. Prepare for suspense, visually stunning battles, and unexpected alliances.
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Gintama°

Bandai Namco Pictures
51 episodes · TV Completed
9.06

Title: Gintama°: A Hilarious and Action-Packed Anime Journey!

Introduction:
Hey there, anime fans! It’s time to buckle up and dive into the world of Gintama°, an anime series that will take you on a wild and laughter-filled ride. As “The Anime Critic,” I’ve had the pleasure of reviewing countless shows, but Gintama° is in a league of its own. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

Visual Delights:
First things first, let’s talk about the animation. Gintama° boasts top-notch visuals that bring the characters and their world to life. From the vibrant colors to the intricate details, every scene is a treat for the eyes. Whether it’s the epic battle sequences or the hilarious comedic moments, the animation quality remains consistent throughout, cementing its position as one of the best-animated series out there.

A Whimsical Universe:
Gintama° is set in an alternate version of Edo, where aliens have invaded and turned the samurai way of life upside down. This unique blend of samurais, aliens, and anachronistic humor forms the backbone of the series. It effortlessly moves from heartfelt drama to hilarious comedy, leaving you emotionally invested one moment and rolling on the floor laughing the next.

Unforgettable Characters:
One of the greatest strengths of Gintama° lies in its diverse and lovable cast of characters. Our main protagonist, Gintoki Sakata, is a former samurai turned freelancer, who shirks his responsibilities in favor of lazing around and eating sweets. His infectious wit, laid-back nature, and incredible swordsmanship make him an incredibly endearing lead.

Alongside Gintoki, we have Shinpachi, a glasses-wearing student with a passion for the samurai way, and Kagura, a feisty alien girl with a big appetite. These three form the backbone of the Odd Jobs Gin, a ragtag group that takes on odd jobs to make ends meet. Their chemistry and camaraderie bring the series to life, with each character having their distinctive quirks and growth arcs.

Engaging Storyline:
Gintama° features an episodic format but also dives into overarching storylines that weave together intricately. This mix adds to the series’ versatility, allowing viewers to enjoy individual adventures while becoming fully invested in the larger narrative. Moreover, Gintama° isn’t afraid to blend various genres seamlessly, jumping from comedy to action to drama flawlessly.

Each episode is crafted with care, delivering unique stories that range from parodies of popular anime tropes to heartfelt journeys that touch the depths of your heart. The humor is cleverly written, making references to real-world events, pop culture, and other anime. However, even in its funniest moments, Gintama° never loses sight of its core themes and values.

Final Verdict:
Gintama° is an absolute gem that should not be missed by any anime enthusiast. Its captivating characters, stellar animation, and impeccable storytelling make it a must-watch series. Whether you’re a fan of comedy, action, drama, or simply love a well-crafted story, Gintama° has something for everyone. So, gather your friends, grab some popcorn, and embark on this unforgettable anime journey!

Where to Watch:
You can stream Gintama° on various platforms like Crunchyroll, Hulu, and Netflix. With its extensive episode count, it’s also a great series to own on DVD or Blu-ray, allowing you to relive the hilarious moments again and again.

That’s it for this review, folks! If you’re looking for an anime that will make you laugh, cry, and everything in between, Gintama° is the perfect choice. Let me know in the comments if you’re excited to dive into this whimsical world, and don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter for more anime recommendations. Stay tuned for more reviews from “The Anime Critic”!

Gintama°
9.06 / 10 Reviewer
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 10 Users (0 votes)
Pros
Gintama° is a masterpiece in the world of anime, offering a unique blend of comedy, action, and heartfelt storytelling that will leave viewers laughing and crying in equal measures. With its diverse cast of memorable characters and cleverly written plotlines, Gintama° is a must-watch series for any anime enthusiast.
Cons
"Gintama° is a wildly irreverent and hilarious anime that seamlessly blends comedy, action, and drama. Its witty dialogue, eccentric characters, and unique storyline make it a must-watch for fans of the genre."
Summary
Gintama° is a wildly entertaining anime that effortlessly blends humor, action, and drama. Set in an alternate Edo period where aliens have invaded Japan, the story follows Gintoki Sakata and his eccentric group as they navigate the chaos and absurdity of their world. With its clever writing, memorable characters, and a perfect balance of comedy and poignant moments, Gintama° is a must-watch for fans of any genre.
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Grisaia no Rakuen

8bit
10 episodes · TV Completed
7.76

Grisaia no Rakuen begins right at the end of the previous installment, Grisaia no Meikyuu. Kazami Yuuji is arrested under suspicion for terrorism. A video showing apparently concrete proof that Yuuji committed these acts, and he is held in custody by Ichigaya.

Ichigaya knows full well that Yuuji didn't commit the crimes he has been accused of. But he did fail to assassinate Heath Oslo, who is the leader of the terrorist organization with an extremely devastating weapon in their possession. In fact, Ichigaya have their own plans for Yuuji…

But all may not be lost for Yuuji. The girls of the Mihama Academy are not about to let Yuuji be used for political gain, and neither may the mysterious new figure which appears before them.

Anime Review: Grisaia no Rakuen

Step into the often dark, yet utterly captivating world of ‘Grisaia no Rakuen’ (The Fruit of Grisaia). This series is a rollercoaster ride that bullet trains through the veil of ordinary school life into the murky depths of past traumas, gripping secrets, and high-stakes danger. This adaptation of the successful visual novel, developed by Front Wing, retains the complex, interweaving narrative of its source material, artfully delivering a story that will grip you from the first episode to the last.

The story revolves around Yuji Kazami, a mysterious student who transfers to Mihama Academy, a unique school with only five female students, each bearing their own troubled pasts. As the bond deepens between Yuji and the girls, his tranquil life takes a turn while his grim past comes back to haunt him. Thrown into a world of dark intrigue and daring adventures, Grisaia no Rakuen takes the viewers on a suspenseful journey, defying expectations at every turn.

Storyline & Plot

‘Grisaia no Rakuen’ masterfully crafts a plot that is far more than what meets the eye. The narrative keeps you on the edge of your seat, seamlessly morphing from the relaxed slice of life to intense psychological drama. Each character’s tragic backstory is splendidly woven into the tapestry of the plot, enriching the story while building a formidable connection between viewers and characters.

Animation & Soundtrack

The Animation is smooth, the artwork vivid and appealing. In particular, the character designs are distinct and memorable, paying homage to their original visual novel counterparts where they were born. The traumatising pasts and intense personalities of the characters are beautifully reflected in their design, translating into a visual masterpiece for the viewers.

Equally noteworthy is the soundtrack, immaculately matching the spectrum of intense emotions experienced throughout the series. From haunting piano solos to adrenaline-pumping electronic music, this anime has it all, contributing to an immersive viewing experience.

Characters

The characters are the anchors that hold ‘Grisaia no Rakuen’ together. Each one is multi-dimensional, with complex histories and personalities. Their development through the series is one of the most commendable attributes of the show. Yuji, the protagonist, is an especially intriguing character whose evolution from a calm outsider to a man battling his tumultuous past keeps you hooked throughout.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, Grisaia no Rakuen is anything but ordinary. It’s a complex, character-driven narrative with suspenseful plot twists, beautifully illustrated, and complemented by an impactful soundtrack. Despite its dark undertones, it masterfully balances moments of levity and humor, delivering a well-rounded anime that fans of this genre should not miss out on.

Whether you’re considering renting, buying or streaming – Grisaia no Rakuen should not be amiss on your anime watchlist. It’s an emotional roller coaster ride that ultimately leaves its mark as an unforgettable, thrilling narrative you can’t easily forget.

Grisaia no Rakuen
7.76 / 10 Reviewer
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 10 Users (0 votes)
Pros
Grisaia no Rakuen boasts a complex and intriguing storyline, hooking viewers with its seamless blend of suspense, romance, and psychological elements. The character development is also praised, with each character being unique and multi-faceted, adding depth to the narrative.
Cons
The anime Grisaia no Rakuen is criticized for its rushed storytelling, which often leaves little room for character development. Some viewers also found the plot to be confusing and convoluted, making it hard to follow.
Summary
Grisaia no Rakuen is an action-packed anime that keeps viewers on the edge of their seats with its gripping story and interesting character development. The series focuses on the psychological turmoil of its characters, making it a thought-provoking experience. A blend of action, humor, and heart-touching moments, Grisaia no Rakuen is a must-watch for anime fanatics.
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Hibike! Euphonium

Kyoto Animation
13 episodes · TV Completed
8.00

Now that Kumiko Oumae has enrolled in Kitauji High School, she hopes to forget about her past. Despite her desire for a fresh start, she gets dragged into the school's band club by her new friends—Sapphire Kawashima and Hazuki Katou—and is once again stuck playing the euphonium.

As the band currently stands, they won't be able to participate in the local festival, Sunfest, let alone compete at a national level. The band's new advisor, Noboru Taki, gives them a choice: they can relax and have fun, or practice hard and attempt to get into nationals. Not wanting to repeat her mistakes from middle school, Kumiko is doubtful as to whether they should try for nationals. Amidst the chaos, she learns that her old bandmate, Reina Kousaka (who she had a bitter relationship with) has joined Kitauji's band club. Under the pressure of Noboru's strict training, Kumiko and her bandmates must learn to overcome their struggles and find success together.


Synopsis:

Hibike! Euphonium, also known as Sound! Euphonium, revolves around the life of bright-eyed first-year high school student, Kumiko Oumae. After a disappointing experience at a middle school concert band competition, Kumiko finds herself reluctant to join the same club in Kitauji High School. However, fate steers her back into the world of wind music, as she encounters her enthusiastic childhood friend, Hazuki Katou, and her former bandmate, Reina Kousaka.

Throughout the series, the complexities of high school life, friendships, and the pursuit of musical excellence unravel. The heartfelt story combines with dynamic endearing characters, offering a slice of life anime packed with both angst and unfiltered joy.

Review:

You’re tuned into The Anime Critic, and today we’re digging into one of the most beautifully orchestrated anime out there, Hibike! Euphonium.

First off, let me just start by shouting from the rooftops about the insane quality of the animation. Kyoto Animation brings their A-game with this one. Every detail, from the texture of the school uniforms to the intricate instrument designs, is an absolute spectacle. It’s the kind of animation quality that demands to be appreciated on the highest display quality you can find. So, if you’re considering streaming this bad boy, make sure your connection is up to par!

But what’s a beautiful visual without compelling storytelling? Fear not, anime aficionados! This is where Hibike! Euphonium shines. As you get absorbed into the world of the Kitauji High School concert band, you’ll find yourself engrossed in the characters’ highs, lows, strengths, and weaknesses. It’s a subtle yet profound commentary on passion, camaraderie, and the resonating concept that perfection is an impossible pursuit but striving for it is what truly brings growth.

The music – it’s in the title, and it doesn’t disappoint! The musical programs, the practice sessions, even the individual notes played (or sometimes faltered) by characters – all have been portrayed with such precision that you can almost feel the music flowing through you. You can feel the intensity of their performances, and sometimes it’s so engrossing that you might find yourself holding your breath!

So, to stream, buy, or rent? If you’re a fan of slice of life genre in anime or just a lover of great animation and storytelling, Hibike! Euphonium is undeniably worth having in your library. It’s a great investment, not just for a one-time watch, but for revisiting and appreciating the melodies of this musical journey.


Hibike! Euphonium
8.00 / 10 Reviewer
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 10 Users (0 votes)
Pros
Hibike! Euphonium stands out for its stunning visual animation and deeply-engaging, well-paced storyline. The character development is thoughtfully done, with each character having depth and personality, enriched by a beautiful music score which frames the whole series perfectly.
Cons
While the anime is beautifully animated and highly expressive, its slow pacing might not appeal to everyone. Some viewers may also find the lack of development in certain supporting characters frustrating.
Summary
Hibike! Euphonium unfolds the drama, dedication and musical journey of a high school concert band. This anime review delves into the engaging character developments, the intricate emotional narratives and striking realism in portraying the world of music. With its remarkable animation and sound, Hibike! Euphonium presents a unique harmony of visuals and audio that music and anime enthusiasts alike will surely appreciate.
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Ore Monogatari!!

Madhouse
24 episodes · TV Completed
7.90

With his muscular build and tall stature, Takeo Gouda is no ordinary high school freshman. However, behind Takeo's intimidating appearance lies a pure heart of gold, and he is considered a hero by his male peers for his courage and chivalry.

Unfortunately for Takeo, his appearance does not bode well for his love life. As if his looks were not already enough to scare the opposite sex away, Takeo's cool, handsome best friend and constant companion Makoto Sunakawa easily, and unintentionally, steals the hearts of the female students—including every girl Takeo has ever liked.

One day, when Takeo saves cute Rinko Yamato from being molested, he falls in love with her instantly. Unfortunately, he suspects that she might be interested in Sunakawa. Despite his romantic feelings for Yamato continuing to bloom, Takeo decides to act as her cupid, even as he yearns for his own love story.

Synopsis of Ore Monogatari!!

Ore Monogatari!! also known as “My Love Story!!” is a tender-hearted rom-com anime series based on the manga of the same name by Kazune Kawahara. The story centers around Takeo Gouda, a towering, muscular high school guy who, despite his intimidating appearance, has the heart of a pure, innocent cherub. Unfortunately for Takeo, it’s always his suave and handsome best friend, Makoto Sunakawa, who gets the girl—while he himself always seems to play the part of the supporting character in his own life story.

That is, until one day when he saves a petite and adorable girl, Rinko Yamato, from a molester in a train. Little does Takeo know, this act of heroism is about to turn his love life around. As the series unfolds, we follow Takeo’s journey as he delves into the realm of first love and all the sweet and challenging moments it presents. Ore Monogatari!! serves up a sweet and hearty dish of love, friendship, and self-discovery that will certainly leave viewers craving for more.

The Anime Critic’s Review

Ore Monogatari!! is a tremendously enjoyable breath of fresh air in a genre that often leans heavily on overdone stereotypes and tropes. It’s an adorable and charming love story—not just between a boy and a girl, but also between friends, and even within oneself. The story is perfectly paced, fleshing out the characters and their relationships without rushing or dragging the plot line.

The animation by Studio Madhouse is nothing short of breathtaking. From its picture-perfect character designs down to the most minute details of the background art, every frame of Ore Monogatari!! is a visual treat. Coupled with a catchy and nostalgically heartwarming soundtrack, and it’s clear that a lot of love and care was put into this series.

What really sets Ore Monogatari!! apart is its refreshingly genuine characters. Takeo, our protagonist, is an absolute gem. His earnest and straightforward nature is both heartwarming and humorously presented. The friendship between Takeo and Sunakawa is another highlight of the series. It’s rare to see such a steadfast and supportive friendship in anime set against a romance backdrop.

Rinko Yamato, the object of Takeo’s affections, is also distinctly likeable. She’s sweet, but never insipidly so. And her chemistry with Takeo feels natural and convincing—as believable in their awkward moments as in their tender ones. Their relationship provides an endearing glimpse of young love in all its awkward, exciting and confusing glory.

If you’re a fan of rom-com anime, Ore Monogatari!! is a must-watch. It’s sweet without being saccharine. It’s funny without being slapstick. It’s touching without being overly dramatic. And most importantly, it’s real, genuine, and utterly lovable. As for whether to rent, buy, or stream—well, in this critic’s humble opinion, Add it to your collection!

Final Thoughts

Ore Monogatari!! has rightly earned its space as one of the most delightful and heartwarming romantic comedy series in recent years. If you’re looking for a story that will make you laugh, cry, and feel all warm and fuzzy inside, then look no further. A love story like no other awaits you in Ore Monogatari!!. So, buckle up ’cause you’re in for a sweet, exciting ride.

Ore Monogatari!!
7.90 / 10 Reviewer
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 10 Users (0 votes)
Pros
Ore Monogatari!! delivers an exceptional story full of heart and humor that bends traditional shojo tropes in a refreshing way. The protagonist's endearing personality combined with the series' unique take on romance provides a breath of fresh air in the genre.
Cons
While Ore Monogatari!! has endearing relationships and character development, some viewers may find its lack of plot progression and conflict frustrating. Its overly sweet nature might also become tiresome for those looking for more complex, intriguing dynamics.
Summary
In the anime review of Ore Monogatari!!, the focus lies heavily on the unconventional love story that challenges stereotypical norms. The two main characters' pure love story and their steady and mature development grabs the viewers' attention. The review acknowledges the refreshing story plot, along with fantastic animations, and the importance of friendship and trust among characters.
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Shokugeki no Souma

J.C.Staff
24 episodes · TV Completed
8.15

Souma Yukihira has been cooking alongside his father Jouichirou for as long as he can remember. As a sous chef at his father's restaurant, he has spent years developing his culinary expertise and inventing new dishes to amaze their customers. He aspires to exceed his father's skill and take over the restaurant one day, but he is shocked to learn that Jouichirou is closing up the shop to take a job in New York.

Rather than tagging along with his father, Souma finds himself enrolling at the prestigious Tootsuki Culinary Academy, where only 10 percent of its students end up graduating. The school is famous for its "Shokugeki"—intense cooking competitions between students often used to settle debates and arguments. Jouichirou tells Souma that to surpass him and survive the next three years at Tootsuki and graduate there.

The academy's brutal curriculum and fiercely competitive student body await the young chef, who must learn to navigate the treacherous environment if he wants to stand a chance at realizing his dreams. But is skill alone enough to let him rise to the top?

Shokugeki no Souma: A Taste of Anime Cuisine!

Synopsis

Welcome to Totsuki Academy, an elite culinary school that shapes the youth into top-notch chefs of the future. A place so prestigious that out of a thousand, only ten make it to graduation. But this did not dissuade the protagonist of our series, Souma Yukihira. Souma, the son of a local eatery owner, dreams to surpass his father’s culinary skills and run their family restaurant.

His culinary journey takes a sudden pivot when his father sends him to Totsuki Academy. Here he encounters gifted individuals who are as passionate about cooking as he is. The series treads on his trials, tribulations, and his determination to prove his mettle in this cut-throat world. But the main course of his inning at the academy, is the thrilling “Shokugeki”, a traditional cook-off where students challenge each other to prove their culinary prowess.

Review

Heads up, foodies and fellow otakus alike! Today we’re diving into the world of “Shokugeki no Souma”, a mouthwateringly good series that effortlessly delight your anime appetites!

Characterization in Shokugeki no Souma is top-tier. Souma’s unwavering optimism and trenchant problem-solving skills make him a relatable lead. Similarly, the broad supporting cast each possesses hierarchical development, making them loveable in their ways. Excluding the over-the-top fan service, the character dynamics add depth to the anime, keeping you invested.

Artistically, Shokugeki no Souma delivers spectacular visuals. The animation, especially during showdowns, is vibrant, dynamic and gets your taste buds tingling. Everything down to the minutest ingredient has been given utter importance, making the gourmet dishes look almost edible on-screen.

Narratively, ‘Shokugeki no Souma’ uses the dichotomy of cooking styles and philosophies, nicely setting the tone for a compelling storyline. The high-stakes ‘Shokugekis’ amp up the tension, propelling you to binge-watch episode after episode.

The series is also peppered with culinary knowledge. It teaches the science behind ingredients and cooking techniques, effectively making it an entertaining and educational ride.

The only real drawback one could point out, in my opinion, is its occasional slide into excessive fan service. It may not sit well with everyone, but it does add a light-hearted element to the overall intensity of the series.

Wrap-Up

All said and done, Shokugeki no Souma delivers a spicy blend of humor, drama, exciting culinary battles, and endearing characters. This anime series wonderfully unifies the love for cooking and combat shounen elements in a truly unique manner that only anime can.

Whether you’re a gastronome, a shounen lover, or just looking for a fun watch, I highly recommend you to rent, buy, or stream this anime. Brace yourself for a flavorful ride and let Shokugeki no Souma take you to a whole new world of culinary art and thrilling food competition.

Rating: 8.5/10

Till the next review, fellow otakus, keep the anime flame burning!

Shokugeki no Souma
8.15 / 10 Reviewer
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 10 Users (0 votes)
Pros
Shokugeki no Souma offers a unique and captivating storyline that integrates food and cooking with intense competition. The animation quality is excellent with great attention to detail, and the characterization and character development are extraordinary, engaging, and diverse.
Cons
The anime, Shokugeki no Souma, tends to over-sexualize and objectify its female characters, which could be offensive to some viewers. Some may also find the concept of 'food battles' too far-fetched and the progression of its storyline a bit predictable.
Summary
Shokugeki no Souma is a dynamic and vibrant anime that revolves around Souma Yukihira's culinary journeys at the prestigious Tōtsuki Culinary Academy. It captures his heated cooking battles that flawlessly blend classic food knowledge with shonen-like energy. This bubbly anime elicits a wide range of emotions through its thrilling cook-offs, lovable characters, and its enticing representation of delectable dishes.
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Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. Zoku

feel.
13 episodes · TV Completed
8.21

With the Volunteer Service Club now firmly established, it is receiving more requests from students in search of solutions to their various issues. However, the club members often struggle to see eye to eye when it comes to their problem-solving ideals. The suggestions that Hachiman Hikigaya recommends frequently clash with those of Yukino Yukinoshita, fracturing the relationships within the club.

Despite their differences, with the trio constantly trying to find common ground, they may soon reach a point where they discover something genuine.

<br /> <strong style="color:#0c70de">Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. Zoku – A must watch for romantic anime enthusiasts!</strong><br />

Set in suburban Japan, “Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. Zoku” or as it is commonly known, “My Youth Romantic Comedy is Wrong as I Expected,” follows the life of the droll high school protagonist Hikigaya Hachiman. After writing a controversial essay about society’s misconceptions on ‘happy youth,’ Hachiman is forced to join a school club, “the Volunteers Club”, run by Yukino Yukinoshita, the cold and beautiful school outcast. The club’s goal is to fulfill students’ various requests for advice and help, and thus, Hachiman becomes entangled in the tangled web of teenage problems and confusions.

The anime dwells upon the peculiar triangle forming amongst Hachiman, Yukino, and the ever-cheerful Yui Yuigahama, who joins the club later. The group navigates through high school life’s ups and downs, dealing with complicated emotions, rivalries, and misunderstandings. Throughout, the series beautifully explores the concept of maturity, personal growth, and understanding the complexities of relationships and feelings, told from Hachiman’s unique cynical perspective.

Anime Critic Review – The Story

“Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. Zoku” is exceptional in its story-telling. The series doesn’t rely on cliché high-school romance tropes but dives much deeper into introspection and analysis of relationships. Hachiman’s character is brilliantly written – his cynicism, introverted nature, and unique philosophy on society and relationships lends an unexpected depth and realism to the anime that is often lacking in its counterparts.

The Characters

The anime shines in its character development. Each character is well fleshed out, with their backstories, fears, confusions, and growing pains carefully elucidated through the episodes. Be it Yukino’s cold demeanor hiding her vulnerability, or Yui’s cheerful front camouflaging her deeper emotions – every character is an enigma unraveling gradually, enrapturing the viewer with their complexities.

Artwork & Animation

The animation quality is top-notch, with great attention given to details like character design, school settings, and lightings. The background score and episode transitions both complement and elevate the overall immersive experience. Special mention has to go to the superb voice acting, which adeptly brings out the essence of each character.

Final words

“Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. Zoku” should definitely be on your watchlist if you appreciate nuanced character development and a storyline that isn’t unnecessarily sugar-coated. This anime paint a far deeper, relatable, and emotional picture of youth and relationships. While humor pops up here and there, it’s the drama and life lessons that take center stage. In conclusion, whether you’re contemplating to rent, buy, or stream, rest assured, you’d be investing your time and money wisely with this anime.

Anime Critic’s Score: 9.5/10

Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. Zoku
8.21 / 10 Reviewer
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 10 Users (0 votes)
Pros
This anime beautifully explores the themes of youth and societal expectations with a combination of humor and depth. The complex characters demonstrate significant development throughout the series, while the engaging narrative and dialogue fulfill viewers' emotional investment.
Cons
While the continuation of the series develops nuanced relationships and characters, the narrative progression may confuse viewers due to lack of clear explanation. It heavily relies on subtle emotional cues which could be easily missed and misunderstood. Additionally, some may find the increase in drama and reduction in comedy disappointing compared to the first season.
Summary
Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. Zoku is an engaging continuation of the original series that digs deeper into its characters' development and relationships. The anime navigates through the stormy seas of youth while compellingly displaying the complexity of human emotions. Spectators can look forward to a blend of humor, tear-jerking moments, social realism and relatable character arcs.
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