Lenni Reviews: “Shiver” By Junji Ito

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review and is suggested for mature readers.

In yet another collection, Junji Ito continues to simultaneously impress me all while wondering why I keep chomping at the bit to read his work. Some of these stories feel a tad clipped but when you’re trying to keep things short, it can’t be helped. Ito really is a master of what he does even if I have to read happy things for awhile whenever I pick up a book of his. 4.9 out of 5.

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Finally Watched It: “Attack on Titan” Season One

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Because after the happy fun of Yuri!! On Ice, who wouldn’t want to watch something that makes you want to jump off a bridge?

That being said, yeah this show is great! I like the story, I LOVE the animation, and the pacing had me trying to watch it all at once. But this old broad does need her beauty sleep and I do have a day job.

If you don’t know the story, one of the last strongholds of humanity is under attack by these giant monsters called Titans. When the outer ring of the city falls, humanity’sย last hope is the Scout Regiment; who fight titans at great cost. The story follows Eren Yeager, who joins the regiment to take revenge after he loses his mother to a titan attack.

This is also a great anime for well-written female characters. If any fellow otaku out there get the eye roll and whining speech about all anime being hentai or full of brainless, big breasted, fanservice fodder; have them take a gander at this. I’m sure Mikasa would have a few things to say to them.

Also, the music is AMAZING in this series.

If I had one ‘complaint’ it would be the faces of the titans sometimes. They can come off a little goofy but, like in Puella Magi Madoka Magica, even goofy looking things can eat your head. A very minor gripe, to be sure.

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I hear season 2 is on the way and I am really looking forward to it. Of course, I’ll talk about that one as well.

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Finally Watched It: Yuri!! On Ice

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After everyone and their mother as talked about this, I have finally plunked my ass down and watched it. If you haven’t heard, this anime is about an ice skater named Yuuri Katsuki who returns to the sport after bending under the pressure at a competition and feeling he let everyone down. He goes home and his friend’s kids record Yuri doing a routine his idol,ย Victor Nikiforov, made famous. The video ends up going viral and Victor decides to become Yuuri’s coach to get him back into skating.

Following Yuuri’s journey in the world of competitive men’s skating not only is engaging, but educational; as I had NO clue about the ins and outs of the sport before I watched this. When I went to the panel, people said they had become so interested in the sport after watching this show, they started taking lessons! That’s pretty cool!

But to stay on point, one of my favorite parts of this show is with all those men in the cast of characters, they don’t fall into the trope of trying to destroy each other in trying to succeed. They all just try to do their absolute best to win by working hard. Hell, they even hang out together! And since this is as yaoi as a show can get without being overt with it, I am also glad that the female characters are not all bitches for absolutely no reason than the fact it’s a trope. If anything, a good chunk of this cast is almost too kind for their own good.

The animation is fucking glorious! The motion capture for the skating is perfection and the voice acting is on point. If I had any real complaint, it’s that there isn’t more of this for me to binge since I just want to spend more time with these characters. This anime is just fun and I look forward to the next season.

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Finally Watched It: “Puella Magi Madoka Magica” vol 2

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This volume follows the second volume of the manga pretty closely and while the voice acting and music keep their quality, there were a couple of questionable camera angles that had me confused. They were super diagonal or oddly framed in a way where you know no human being would have deliberately placed a camera. At one point two characters were sitting at a table and I think the camera would have to have been sitting on the girl’s lap, at an angle, with the zoom at 150%. This only happened a couple of times so it wasn’t too distracting.

The tone also is constant but I was a little taken aback by the gore being blacked out. Perhaps I’m spoiled by other anime were zero fucks are given and people spill gallons of blood all the time. I wonder what this would have looked like if the animators were really allowed to let loose.

Overall, I’m enjoying this! I don’t know if this is an anime I’d watch more than once, though.

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