Jessi (belindabird) wrote in mas_at_lj,

Anime Openings and Closings

I got a couple of requests to list the openers and closers that were drawn during the game on Thursday. Here they are, with some better descriptions (and snarky comments, in some cases) than I could come up with on the fly. Just as a note, I don't watch all of these series to completion (I know, I'm such a failed otaku). I actually have a review website, my gimmick being that I watch the first episodes of everything I can get my hands on each anime season. I decide then if a series is worth watching more of (and I do honestly continue on with plenty of them - more than I think many people actually end up watching). So that's how I pick up a lot of these weird theme songs.

These are in alphabetical order pretty much, and I'll link to a copy of the video on Youtube if possible so that you can re-live the madness.

Antique Bakery - I've seen the entire series. The story of four men who end up working in a bakery together. The main character is Tachibana, a man who was kidnapped as a child. He quits his business job to start the bakery. He hires Ono, a gay pastry chef whose curse is that his attractiveness can convert even straight men to the gay side (which has caused trouble at his other jobs). Tachibana is the only man ever to be immune to Ono's wiles. Eiji is a former boxer who becomes Ono's apprentice. Chikage was a servant to the Tachibana household and is fairly dense but very sweet. Most people mistake this series for a BL/Yaoi series, which it isn't exactly (only one of the characters is gay and, even though he has a couple of encounters within the context of the series, it's not the main focus), but it is an incredibly cheesy but overall enjoyable look at some fun characters.

Astro Fighter Sunred Season 2 - I'm currently watching this one. The premise should be obvious to anyone who watched season 1 this past semester, because season 2 is essentially the same. Normally that would be sort of irritating to me, but I loved the execution of the comedy in the first season, and more of the same can only mean good things.

Bottle Fairy - I saw one or two episodes way back in the day (before MAS used votaku and we nearly voted this into the lineup with a raise of hands). Four fairies live in bottles on their "Sensei-san's" desk and attempt to learn about aspects of the human world. Great if you like your super-cute mixed with some occasionally borderline loli-licious elements, but not for me.

Damekko Doubutsu - We watched all of this in MAS over the Summer in 2006. It's about a group of animals who are bad at the things they're supposed to be good at. Uruno the wolf is timid, Chiko the Cheetah is clumsy, and Yunihiko the unicorn is a lazy drunk. It's got a weird balance of cute and funny, and the short (five-minute) episodes are easy to swallow. Might be a little WTF for some people, though.

Doujin Work - Saw a couple of episodes back when it was released in fansub. It's about a girl who notices that her friend seems to makea lot of money selling doujin at conventions, so wants to join in on the fun. Of course it's harder than she expected, but she makes friends who help her along the way. Also the doujin group is named "panty revolution" if I'm not mistaken. I think that this is now released on DVD in the states.

Dragon Ball Kai - I've been watching this in my free time. This was the first "Bonus" of the night (a well-known series thrown into the mix). It's the opening from the re-edit of Dragon Ball Z which cuts out most of the filler and tightens up the series as a whole. This is a song that will get into your head if you really let it, so be careful.

Futakoi Alternative - One of the odd shows I don't think I've actually seen - the opening just magically appeared on my computer one day. It's about a boy who inherits a detective agency, and a pair of twin girls show up at his doorstep and become his live-in secretaries. Contains romance, sci-fi, action and some comedic elements.

Kaiba - One of my all-time favorite anime ever. It takes place in a universe where people store their memories/personalities electronically on memory chips, and can then switch them between bodies. Kaiba has lost his memories and the first half of the series has him traveling to find them again. The second half of the series reveals just who he is and how that fits into the main plot. A lot of people get thrown off by the visual style of the show, but I love it - according to the creator, it was done that way to allow the characters to develop without the audience having biases towards them. In any case, the story is great, I loved the characters, it's an original production (not based on a book or manga) and has both a cool sci-fi premise and tells a wonderful love story. This show really needs more love.

Kobato - I've been keeping up with this series as it's broadcast. It's the story of a cute girl of mysterious origins named Kobato Hanato, who comes to earth in order to heal the hearts of the people around her, and in this way be allowed to travel to a certain place she wants to go (which isn't clear yet). She's aided in this quest by her foul-tempered dog plushy named Ioryogi. It's a CLAMP adaptation that crosses over with their Wish manga from time-to-time. The show is very cute and its protagonist very naive which can skirt the line of being very irritating sometimes, but the series has steadily gotten better through the 10 or 11 episodes that have come out so far. It's best when the stories are heartwarming rather than silly.

Koutetsu Sangokushi - I watched one episode of this waaaaay back in like 2007 when it came out. It seemed like a fairly forgettable adaptation of the Chinese tale "Romance of the Three Kingdoms" with some BL/Yaoi elements tossed into the mix. I remember the first episode being a confusing mess, but the main character did have a pretty cool weapon - a giant metallic arm thing. Good luck finding this one anywhere.

Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu Purezza - This is a continuation of the first season. I've seen one episode of each season and that was about enough for me. It's the story of a beautiful and rich girl named Haruka who harbors a secret; she's actually a hardcore otaku, something which caused her great strife in middle school. The main character of the show is a guy who accidentally discovers this secret, and helps her fulfill her otaku urges while keeping it a secret from everyone else in school who admires her. The issue I have with this series is that it both focuses on otaku activities (in the first ep of season 2, for example, the characters go to some anime voice actor event) and yet still portrays them as something that the characters should be ashamed of (no one can ever know about this!). Oh, and the characters, especially Haruka, are completely irritating to boot.

Sailor Moon - The second bonus of the night, this is the classic opening that got adapted into English for the American TV broadcast (natsukashii!). Definitely brings back memories of waking up at 6am to watch the show before going to school.

Seitokai no Ichizon - I watched an episode as part of my review project. Essentially the entire premise is that the student council of an exclusive private school gets together each day and talks about random (and usually very meta) things. This show really wishes that it were The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, but it isn't nearly as nicely-animated, nor as clever.

Sora no Otoshimono - Watched one episode for review. This show is completely unforgivable in every possible way. The premise is that a high school boy is out one night watching for a strange phenomenon in the upper-atmosphere. It turns out to be a portal that, in addition to dropping out all sorts of debris, deposits an "angelroid" named Ikaros in his lap. Ikaros immediately bonds to him (via a leash around her neck, oh how classy) and claims her purpose is to fulfill any wish that he has. The things that he does are to run around school naked, pause time and fondle the breasts of his female classmates, and become invisible so that he can molest a girl from his class that pisses him off. More than once he almost has sex with Ikaros. It's worse than Queen's Blade - at least in that series there weren't any shitty male characters.

Tatakau Shisho - The Book of Bantorra - Unfortunately I couldn't find the opening animation on youtube - the link is to the Crunchyroll stream and the theme starts about 1:50 into the episode. This series takes place in a world where, when people die, their souls become books that can be read. The Bantorra Library, lead by the mysterious woman Hamyuts Meseta, houses these books, and must constantly fend off attacks from the Shindeki Church, which has other goals. The series itself is a bit odd and someone is just as likely to dislike it as they are to really like it (I'm in the second group). It's comprised of a lot of shorter arcs that I feel are building towards revealing something big (at this point, that big secret may be Hamyuts' actual goals as the acting director). Pretty interesting and a little different.

Tetsuko no Tabi - I think only one episode of this was ever subbed. The premise is that a manga artist is asked by her boss to accompany him and a travel writer on a train trip around Japan so that she can illustrate the story, but the writer turns out to be a major train otaku who micro-manages their trip down to the minute. You can see why no one has ever heard of this series.

Thriller Restaurant - I've been watching this one as it comes out. It's based off of a series of kid's books and tells some scary (but not too scary!) ghost stories. My husband likens it to the old Nickelodeon series "Are You Afraid of the Dark." It's fun, and be surprisingly creepy for a show aimed at kids.

Shoujo Kakumei Utena - I'm guessing most people who have been going to MAS have seen this show (I'm actually surprised we found someone who hadn't seen it). In any case, the show is extremely hard to really explain, but it's awesome. Honestly, just go watch it. If you can't find the DVDs (they're out-of-print), There was recently a remastered release of the series in Japan, and one can find English subbed versions of those if one looks on the internets hard enough...

I think that's about it. If anyone is interested in any of these series and wants to know more, I'm happy to help them, just reply to this post or email me at belindabird at gmail dot com.
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