Saturday, April 2, 2011

Escap3's Spring 2011 Preview

Every year, it comes. . . as day turns to night, as regular as clockwork. As the snows melt, and the plants start to bloom, we know that Winter Is Coming.

Wait, sorry, that's not right at all. . . Ohhhhhh, that's what it was. I got distracted for a minute by the shiny non-anime releases. It won’t happen again, honestly.
As you’ve likely figured out by Yuri’s previous posts on the subject, Spring is almost here, and with a new season comes a whole heaping plate of new anime, and in advance of the coming storm are my ‘picks’ for the Spring 2011 anime season, right after the jump.

C: The Money of Soul

C piqued my interest when I first heard about it, with a plot that sounded like the demon baby of Freakonomics and Death Note. Or something. It’s an original anime production, so details aren’t readily available, but based on the above trailer, and information available elsewhere, a young man is given lots of money by a strange supernatural being, and is told to make it all back with the power of the stock market.
It’s also being directed by Kenji Nakamura (Trapeze, Mononoke,) and scripted by Noboru Takagi. The latter, which I found after checking MAL, also handled Baccano! and Durarara!!, two of my favorite shows of the past five years. The concept might be out there, but if the character work in C: even comes close to being as good as it was in Baccano! and DRRR!, I’ll be more than satisfied.
C: premiers April 14,\
Watching?: How can I not?
Reviewing?: I wish there was some sort of Baccano reference I could make, but yes.


Where to start with this show? For starters, it’s based on a visual novel [hotlink wiki visual novel], has something to do with sending text messages back in time, and has become recognizable for the superfluous semicolon in the title. (It does become oddly practical when you realize you can find the title in any blog post by just searching for “;”)

My biggest worry is the show’s origin as a visual novel. Anime adaptations of VN’s have two challenges in production: first, visual novels are, as the name implies, novel length, and second, VN’s tend to have different routes and endings, which is to say, the story change drastically each time you read/play it. None of this translates well into an anime.

I’ve said little about the plot, and for good reason: to quote Scamp, “The more information I get about (Stein’s;Gate) the more confused I get.” As proof, I submit the visual novel’s opening above, from which I’ve gleaned the following pieces of information: the art direction is all kinds of awesome, a satellite may or may not fall, and there’s a meido with twintails and cat ears named Faris NyanNyan.

If, for some reason, you are able to understand the plot, and wish to explain it, please leave a comment below, and we here at Anime Plate will do our best to get you proper medical care.

Steins;Gate premiers April 5th, and runs for twelve episodes.

Reviewing?: With hesistation.

Deadman Wonderland

Deadman Wonderland, along with Semi and Colon comprise my ‘bets’ for the 2011 anime season. As strange, oddball, and pretentious as they might seem at first glance, they are the glimmers of hope in this season. In terms of concept, Deadman Wonderland seems the most ‘familiar.’ In a cross between Battle Royale, Akira and more 80s science fiction movies than I can shake a stick at, in the aftermath of an earthquake that sunk three-quarters of Tokyo (feel free to create controversy about that somewhere else,) a new prison named “Deadman Wonderland,” was established on ground zero.

The prison, designed to look like a giant amusement park, where prisoners are put through your standard gauntlet of sadistic, brutal and exotic ‘punishment games,’ all of which are broadcast to the general public for their viewing pleasure. The main character is a stock shonen protagonist, who is falsely accused of killing his entire class, and shipped off to “Wonderland.”

The concept is interesting enough, even if it does feel a tad overplayed, but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Only time will tell if this particular mix of plot points and bloody murder is interesting enough to be a success, but I’m keeping my hopes up.

Deadman Wonderland airs April 16th and will last for twelve episodes. It can be streamed free of charge one week after initial broadcast at, or the day of, for premium members.

Watching?: Yes
Reviewing?: Yes


X-Men is the third out of four shows being produced as part of the “Marvel Heroes Project.” That alone would be more than enough cause to throw the master tapes, scripts, sketches, and if necessary, the entire production team, down the darkest deepest hole within reach. As much as I try and avoid any preconceptions or prejudices in my review, my expectations for the new X-Men series are as humanly possible. Or lower.

That said, I still plan to watch and review X-Men, keeping as open a mind as possible. While the plot boils down to the X-Men traveling to Japan( to rescue a kidnapped student,) there are some noticeable improvements in other areas. The animation (from trailers,) is noticably better than Wolverine’s ever was (marked by characters having actual facial expressions.) As for the writing . . . I wouldn’t bet on it.

X-Men streams on April 1st, and will last for twelve episodes. Trolololol, indeed. G4 has the licensing rights, as of this writing.

Watching?: Yes
Reviewing?: Until my brain shuts down out of spite.

Kampfer: fur die Liebe

Last on the list is the guiltiest pleasure of the anime season, and the only OAV I’m planning on watching/reviewing is the Kampfer OVA. The Kampfer anime ran for 12 episodes in the Winter 2009 season, and followed the adventures of Natsuru Senou, a high school student who is recruited by the mysterious ‘Moderators,’ to become a Kampfer, and fight other Kampfers for some unknown reason. Unfortunately for Natsuru, Kampfers can only be female, and whenever Natsuru transforms into a Kampfer, he leaves his gender behind.

The end result of this gender-bending comedy series (there are a few fight scenes scattered throughout the show, but they prove to be the exception, more than the rule,) is a trainwreck. It is also the most enjoyable trainwreck in recent memory, and is one of the (unintentionally) funniest shows of the past three years. The OVA looks to pick up where the series left off, and I’m surprisingly eager for more.

Watching?: Yes
Reviewing?: Apparently.

This season also includes series based on: a pachinko game, an arcade game that’s close enough to DDR for me to get away with calling it that; and a self-help book for 30+ Otaku who can’t get laid, which I refuse to say anything else about.
There are also two ecchi series, one of which features lots of fanservice, and a protagonist who is dependent upon a white human bodily fluid, as does the other show. You can tell them apart because one of them doesn’t have a loli succubus for the main character, and the other one is being subbed by Crunchyroll.

Watching?: None of them.
Reviewing?: You're kidding, right?

P.S. The lovely "Game of Thrones," promotional art is the property of

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