So initially, Tofu added Romeo x Juliet to our rotation because the opening theme is a redone version of “You Raise Me Up” and it was one of the funniest things imaginable. Imagine our surprise when it turns out to actually be a pretty freakin’ great show (unless you’re Matt)!
There’s a lot to talk about with an anime adaptation of Shakespeare’s play Romeo and Juliet – how it plays around with the source material in interesting ways, how it sets itself apart from the original, how the language you watch the show in changes the entire feel of the series – and man, do we talk about it. We had some words about the show (and each other’s opinions about the show), so trust us when we say that this is an episode well worth listening to.
Specifically, I have a problem with watching anime from my backlog. Years ago, when I had just gotten back into watching anime in earnest, anime felt like a wide open world, filled to the brim with all sorts of series that I would jump at the opportunity to watch. Now, years later, the situation is exactly the same – there’s tons of shows out I would love to watch, and the list only continues to grow. That, unfortunately, is where the anime problem comes in. Unsurprisingly, as part of the Backloggers, I do have a bit of a backlog of anime that I would like to watch at some point in time. I’ve been able to chip away at it, to be sure, but recently, I’ve encountered this issue where I look at my backlog, and I internally just grind to a screeching halt. What do I even watch from this list? What do I dedicate my time to? How can I possibly choose something from all of this?
That, friends, is where my secret weapon comes in. What’s the best way to choose a show and chip away at your backlog?
The fall 2020 anime season has decided to be merciful to us – it has deigned to not be full of complete and utter suffering shows, unlike its predecessor, which is great. However, there was a price to be paid for this. There is now just too much anime! As a result, we…just go over a bunch of it and probably only hit about half of the shows that are actually airing this season. Kamisama help us all.
Unsurprisingly, with such a huge amount of shows airing this season (or with things just getting back to a normal fall season airing load), we’ve got a lot of great stuff to cover. We gush about how much of a mood Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is, the unbridled joy (or newly brided joy?) of TONIKAWA: Over the Moon for You, some surprising hits of the season such as Akudama Drive, Warlords of Sigrdrifa, and Moriarty the Patriot, and we even manage to get in some discussion about the surprising (and not surprising) additions to our drop piles, like Assault Lily: BOUQUET and Noblesse. This is a packed one, so strap in, get comfy, and enjoy the ride!
Get your band-aids and tissues ready, because the end of the Summer 2020 anime season has come out swinging. And good god, is it swinging hard.
Thankfully, we’re able to talk about the fun (read as: not as bleak on a weekly basis) stuff, like Appare-Ranman!, Deca-Dence, and Rent-a-Girlfriend, before we got back into the Suffering Zone, the Sequel, which is still sponsored by Re:Zero and OreGairu. Seriously, though, there was a incredible amount of good shows this season, and you’ll be kicking yourself if you don’t give them the shots they deserve. Get on in here!
I’m not entirely sure why on a blog called “The Backloggers” it’s taken us a good five years or so to get a post series going about chipping away at our backlogs. Well, now we can’t say that we haven’t done it – this post marks the beginning of a series I’m dubbing “Backlog Busting,” where we, obviously, write about stuff on our backlog that we’ve recently knocked off the list (whether that means we completed it and loved it, ended up dropping it because it was surprisingly bad, or anything else in-between). As hilarious as it could have been to start this series out by talking about some hot garbage from deep in the backlog, I can pretty happily say that this post is about an absolute banger – Kamisama Kiss.
Okay, so Welcome to the N.H.K. might not have been the best choice for our last podcast, given the whole, you know, staying inside and existential dread thing. This time around, though, I don’t think we could have gotten a better show! We watched Rokuhoudou Yotsuiro Biyori, a heartwarming show about four dudes running a teahouse/cafe. If that sounds like a chill show with not much going on, you would be absolutely correct, and my god, did we need it.
Rokuhoudou Yotsuiro Biyori, having come out in 2018, is a show that all three of us didn’t even know existed, and we are here to atone for that crime. Even though the premise is simple and easy to digest, the show has a lot of layers, and we dig deep into them! Tofu gets in way too deep about food as narrative and narrative as food (it’s a show about a cafe, bro, chill), we have a surprisingly fruitful comparison of Rokuhoudou and Isekai Shokudou, and Kyle almost ends everyone by conjuring the ghostly image of a shonen food battle anime that uses Gatorade in all of its meals. Yeah, it’s a surprising amount of mileage on this one, so check it out!
It’s what I continuously say season after season when another discourse comes to light within the anime community. I don’t think it would necessarily be a problem if the discussions were fruitful and people were more understanding, a problem that I talked about back when responding to Irina’s article several months ago. That’s not to say that I think discourse is invalid or that I think that people shouldn’t be discussing how they feel about a particular show, but there’s a limit as to how you should do it and treating your debate partners with respect and understanding while doing so.
Okay, folks – it’s here. It’s week seven, and all shows have at this point finally hit the middle of their cour, which can only mean one thing. It’s time for a mid-season ranking post!
I want to treat this post a little differently than the ones I’ve put together so far – I’m going to be giving a look at each show that I’m still watching this season and rank them according to…criteria. Magic stuff. You know. We’ll start from the bottom and progressively work our way to the top of my list for this season. I hope you’re ready, because, uh, I’m not.
Putting together a ranking for the shows I’m still watching has proved to be a genuinely grueling task. While I initially felt that it would be a simple task, once I got past the bottom two, the reality of the situation set in pretty hard when I found my list constantly switching shows around to hugely different positions. I think, however, that I’ve finally hit a spot I’m comfortable with, so join me, won’t you?
Well, folks, here we are almost at the halfway point of the Summer 2020 season. This just feels…weird. The middle of a season always seems to creep up on me, and it always feels as though it gets here so much faster than anyone would really expect it to. And as a teacher, it took me by surprise even more than usual, since I’m preparing to be back in the classroom in a handful of days. However, I am pleased to say that everything I’ve stuck with has yet to really disappoint me, even this deep into the season. This week, as with last week, I’m going to highlight a few series that I want to give some special attention to. Check ‘em out!
In the past two weeks of Re:Zero, we’ve seen two perspectives of confronting the past regarding how Subaru and Emilia handle their own issues. While we still don’t have the full details of Emilia’s situation (although we can make assumptions at this point with some of the backstories from the OVAs), there is no doubt that they’ve both had their own troubles and issues when it comes to how their past selves have handled particular situations.
Looking back to Season 1, we’ve had a large overview of Subaru’s mentality regarding how self-righteous and selfish he was when it came to trying to fulfill his own desires and wants, to the point where it took several episodes in order for him to get knocked out of that mentality due to the hardships he faced at the time. While we still see bits of that shine through Subaru’s personality now, he’s obviously undergone a full transformation thanks to those hardships as well. By looking at Episode 29, we can get a lot more context about Subaru’s past life before he was isekai’d off into the universe of Re:Zero as we know it.