Renuntiatio Brevis

Here’s just a brief summary of what I’m watching this season.  Also, I just finished the first draft of a short story.  A nice piece set in a familiar fantasy world of mine.  Once I have it edited and checked over by certain readers, I intend to hit the 2014 Novel and Short Story Writer’s Market and see who might take it.  If no one wants it or the publication doesn’t mind me publishing it in other venues, I’ll post it as a page here for those of my dear readers who like fantasy.

This image rather fits the tone of the story I wrote.

This image rather fits the tone of the story I wrote.

At any rate, my favorite anime this season has been Noragami, a fantasy anime set in modern times.  It follows the episodic adventures of a daemon (i.e. low level and unnoticed god.  I can’t resist using classical terms.) named Yato and two people who meet him in his quest to become the most important god in Japan.  The episodes tend to be quite funny.  The animation is the most beautiful I’ve seen this season.  Episode four promises that a main plot might develop down the road, but I’m enjoying the crazy adventures and references to other anime.  In particular, elements of this series remind me of Samurai Deeper KyoHell Girl, and Rurouni Kenshin.  I’d place it as my clear favorite for this season.

Yukine wins the award of most awesome katana of the season, I'd say.

Yukine wins the award of most awesome katana of the season, I’d say.

Witchcraft Works stands as my second favorite.  It deals with a young high school boy who learns that a class of witches want to steal a magical component in him, but Kagari, the most popular girl in school and a puissant witch on the side of law and order, takes him under her wing.  The two protagonists tend to be rather straightforward in their relationship, which is rather refreshing.  The show is incredibly lighthearted, all the characters are extremely likable, and the episodes get better every week.

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Next, I highly anticipate episodes of Tonari no Seki-kun.  These shorts are always incredibly amusing and carry the zany ambiance of the manga.  It’s a comedy that covers the ridiculous games a school girl’s classmate, Seki-kun, plays on his desk.  You absolutely must make time to watch these shorts!

tonari

Then, Wizard Barristers edges out The Pilot’s Love Song by dint of being more original.  I’ve never seen an anime where a lawyer is the main character.  Several things annoy me about the plots in Wizard Barristers, but it has the chance to become more interesting.  If not, I might drop this one.  Similarly, The Pilot’s Love Song needs to become a little more original.  Something needs to separate it from Last Exile, but we’ll see.

Cecil

Of the shows I would still like to check out, Strange+ and Magical Warfare make me the most curious.  (Then again, I still need to see Unbreakable Machine Doll.  No one I know really blogged about this show, which could be why I failed to pick it up.)  I might give Nobunaga the Fool a second chance, but everything I’ve heard about the Nobunaga of history has rather made me despise him.  So, there’s only the slimmest chance of me identifying with this hero.  (I’m more likely to cheer for his opponents.)  Lastly, certain bloggers have written good things about D-Frag, so I might watch that.

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19 comments on “Renuntiatio Brevis

  1. You’re looking forward to a handful of anime, huh? As for me, I’m looking forward to only one anime right now: Mekakucity Actors, the anime of the Kagerou Project, which will air on April. The short commercials every Saturday, which contains a character’s anime design, their seiyuu’s name, and the seiyuu speaking in character, are also stuff that I’m looking forward to as I look forward to the anime. Man, I don’t think I’ve had this much dedication to a series in a long time. Anyway, I like the Kagerou Project so much, so much that it’s already become my favorite Japanese series, because it’s a series that taught me really valuable life lessons. I’m very thankful for encountering that series…

    Someday, I’d like to properly get official copies of the light novels, albums, manga, and the anime. The Kagerou Project has a pretty complex plot, you see, and one medium is just the tip of the iceberg. Hm, making sense of the Kagerou Project is something that I’d like to accomplish someday. It’s so interesting…so awesome…so beautiful…

    The Kagerou Project has really been a great influence to me, alright. 🙂

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    • I’ll have to look Mekakucity Actors up. I might just add it to my list of shows to watch for the Spring season. The synopsis offered by My Anime List sounded interesting.

      You might say that, as an anime blogger, I have a duty to post about new and upcoming shows. In the beginning of my anime blogging career, I posted mostly about older shows…and few read the articles. Heck, a short time ago, I posted on what I believe should be some pretty well known shows, Noir and Madlax–released 2001 and 2004 respectively, and only Genkinahito liked and commented on the article! But, I’m still going to try to interest people in the classics!

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      • Well, each and every person has different tastes, alright. I’m not that interested in the classics, to be honest, and most of the anime from the recent years aren’t that appealing to me, too. I think I’ve seen too much harem and romance (and certain action-packed ones with added romance angles) anime as of now, to be honest. Some were appealing to me, but they never stuck to me for very long. I’d rather learn valuable life lessons and help spread virtues rather than ogle attractively-drawn girls and watch a dude being a magnet for attractive girls.

        Welp, do your best and have fun with your anime blogging, man. I may not be that much interested in a lot of anime, but I hope you find and recommend something that will interest me someday!

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      • It sounds like Rurouni Kenshin, my favorite anime, was made for you. It concerns a wandering samurai who tries to do penance for the assassinations he did during the Meiji Revolution. It has great fights, humor, no real fanservice (a geisha wearing a bare shouldered kimono is pretty much the only thing, and she’s relegated to the second season), and offers enough historical information to ace a test on Japanese history. It was helpful on a high school history test, anyway!

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      • Rurouni Kenshin, huh? I think it was known as “Samurai X” or something here in my country, but anyway, I never really looked at it that much. Maybe I should take a look at it again sometime. I wonder if it’s still being aired here in my country, though…

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      • Just keep in mind that the Samurai X English dub is awful. If you watch it in English, the Rurouni Kenshin dub done by ADV films is much better. Also, the OVA Samurai X: Trust and Betrayal is a magnificent story–the best anime ever made.

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  2. Genki Jason says:

    I’ve only watched a couple of these. Tonari no Seki-kun was fun but The Pilot’s Love Song reminded me of Last Exile so much that I wanted something and after two episodes I dropped it.

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    • I know what you mean. Right now, I’ve stalled on the second episode myself, but today I’ll see whether the next two will convince me that this won’t be a Last Exile ripoff. But even if it is, I hope that impresses on their minds that they must try to make it at least as good–which would something: Last Exile is #9 on my top ten list after all.

      So, what shows have grabbed your attention this season?

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  3. […] my dear readers, remember the short story I mentioned that I was writing here?  Well, it became a novella, and then someone who read the story convinced me to make it a novel; […]

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  4. David A says:

    The ending of Nobunaga the Fool is the only thing I’ve watched from the series, is good, nice music and visuals. But, I don’t like what I’ve read of the series, and that Joan of Arc character in a immodest outfit.

    D-frag, I dropped that one after the thir episode. Vulgar jokes, semi lesbian characters, and it looked like the next episodes were going to include more fanservice.

    Tonari no seki kun. It was fun, until I was reading that in the manga the main character uses a ouija board in one of his school antics, another dropped series.

    This winter season lacks more good shows.

    God Bless you!

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    • The Japanese do seem obsessed with St. Joan of Arc, don’t they? At least, they’re not as bad as the people who made the video game Deadliest Warrior: Legends. It’s a game based on fights to the death with historical characters, and they included St. Joan of Arc as one of the characters!!! Could they not have chosen King Richard the Lionheart, The Black Prince, or any other figure who is not a canonized saint?

      At any rate, Nobunaga the Fool held little interest for me because the historical Nobunaga is a fiend. (As far as I’m concerned, the Nobunaga of the video game Onimusha is an accurate representation of the villain.) That was also one of the reasons I could not get into Nobunagun either.

      Those details about D-Frag sound problematic. I might have to watch it myself before making a final decision. My tolerance for certain features of Japanese anime is high–probably too high to tell you the truth.

      Chapter 12 of Tonari no Seki-kun was rather wrongheaded. It treated Kokkuri-san (essentially, a Ouiji board) as a big joke and Seki-kun’s reactions to it as superstitious. But, I’d ready to forgive the mangaka for that. When stories written by Christians contain errors, we can’t expect perfection from pagans. As far as I remember, that’s the only objectionable bit in the manga.

      The anime Ghost Hunt has an excellent series of episodes dealing with the dangers of Kokkuri-san. A great show if you like horror.

      It is hard to find good shows. I’d have to say that the best things I’m watching right now are Kill la Kill (problematic, but with good messages, I think), Witch Craft Works, Shiki, and Shin Sekai Yori (problematic, but it has the understanding that human society has been warped by people trying to create a Utopia). The last two are from the summer of 2010 and the fall of 2012 respectively. Sometimes one needs to go back a few years to find good shows one has missed!

      God Bless and Keep you, also!

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      • David A says:

        Yes, her being a canonized Saint is what makes it worse. Portraying a saint as a fanservice character for people to ogle… ugh.

        About the problematic elements on anime, while some things are not an ocassion of sin to me (beach and pool episodes, for example -although I avoid to recommend series that have much focus on that, since not everyone has the same levels of tolerance, and could be more affected), I avoid other elements for their intrinsic qualities. Shows with yuri fanservice (yaoi too, but is not as common on some genres I like [slice of life, school settings]), vulgar jokes, ecchi (erotic situations, malfunctioning clothing…), anticatholicism, etc.

        In D-frag, they introduced a new character in the third episode,. Some of the other female characters were way too focused on her chest, that being a source of most of the vulgar jokes on the episode.

        I usually don’t have too much problem with japanese mythologic elements, is similar to the Odissey or the Ilyad, I think. But this crossed the line onto real life occult, with the use of a dangerous object, and in a comedy series context, I guess is different from the Ghost Hunt example you are speaking about.

        I dropped kill la kill too, these outfits…

        Older shows… I’m watching Legend of the Galatic Heroes. It seems that there isn’t much problematic content, except some brief scenes with nudity.

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      • Yeah, those outfits in Kill la Kill are ridiculous. I know that they’re trying to follow in the footsteps of Go Nagai, but still…

        Oh, I forgot to mention that I’m enjoying Noragami. The idea of a god trying to work his way up in the world by doing any job for 5 yen is priceless. And other elements of the story appear quite original and the characters are fun to watch.

        A lot of people love Legend of Galactic Heroes. Too much politics for me, though.

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  5. David A says:

    I read your piece on Kill la Kill. Interesting that you saw some deep message on that, although I disagree on the comparison between Christ and the hanging sentient uniform, I think is inappropriate.

    Noragami?

    Until yesterday I was aware of it. The premise sounds interesting. There is anything objectionable?

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    • All allegories break down somewhere. The greater the degree of difference between the two things the less room there is for comparison. Since that episode, I haven’t been able to find good grounds of comparison between Senketsu and Our Lord. But, I think that there was nothing wrong with me comparinga particular facets of the two in that instance.

      God, as the Creator, possesses every perfection within Himself to infinity. He is the source of all goodness and perfection found in creatures. While human beings are the most like God, other created things contain bits of His perfection; though, neither humans nor other creatures can compare to the infinite perfection of God. As such, one can even compare a spider to God in that spiders patiently and perseveringly await their prey to fall into their webs as God waits for sinners to return to Him with infinite patience and perseverance. However, one can find fault with this analogy, and I doubt whether I can find another point of comparison! But, God created creeping and crawling things and declared them good.

      Anything objectionable with Noragami…I can’t think of anything, since you said that you don’t mind mythology. It’s rare to see an anime which so believes that it can succeed on the merits of its characters and story! The animation is beautiful too.

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      • David A says:

        It was not for merey being an analogy, but the subject. A uniform that feeds on the blood of the girl and shows lot of her body.

        Beautiful animation too? well, that’s great! good to know about more high quality shows.

        P.S. Very interesting blog. Is nice to find more Catholics inetrested in anime/manga.

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      • I’m sure that you’ll love Noragami! It’s a wonderful show.

        Thanks for your compliment! It is good to find Catholics who like anime. And I love to be able to make connections between the ideas in anime and the Faith. Whether its as tenuous as Kill la Kill or as obvious as Blassreiter or Arpeggio of Blue Steel. 🙂

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  6. […] realization that I have not written about either Noragami or Witch Craft Works since writing Renuntiato Brevis struck me.  Yet, these are my two favorite shows from the winter season.  Now, that they have […]

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