Review: Koikimo (ANN)

Koikimo (TV Series 2021– ) - IMDb

I’m not saying that there is a problem with watching the show and liking it. I think there is a difference between liking a show and condoning what it represents: you can like something and still have your own, informed opinion. At the end of the day, this just wasn’t a series for me, and my opinion certainly isn’t the end all be all: media is subjective, problematic faves exist, and if this is yours, it’s neither my place nor my intent to judge you for it.

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Review: Let’s Make a Mug Too (ANN)

In the end, I suppose that’s the power of the slice-of-life genre, as well as the appeal of simple, but enjoyable anime. Let’s Make a Mug Too isn’t particularly beautiful: there were a few moments that made me gasp, but for the most part, it has pretty average animation and art, though it’s all done really well, if you catch my drift. I’ll also say that honestly, Let’s Make a Mug Too has fairly generic background music, though the OP and ED go hard, and definitely make you want to go throw clay. I still frequently catch myself humming Tobira o Aketara (Open the Door), which is sung by the Pottery Quartet, because it’s such an earworm of a do-it-yourself song.

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Advanced Review: Life of Melody by Mari Costa (Seven Seas + Hiveworks)

Life of Melody

What’s The Story?
When Razzmatazz, a snazzy fairy godfather, and Bon, a burly beast-man, find a human child in the woods, they decide to co-parent the mortal babe… at least for now. What they don’t expect is love: love for their brand-new human charge, love for caretaking, and a blooming love between them both. Will this fantastical found family become a true family, or will love fail to come full circle?

Reviewer’s Note: I received a review copy of Life of Melody as part of my work for ANN. However, as Life of Melody is an OEL/American graphic novel, I was unable to publish the review there. However, I was given permission to publish my review elsewhere, so it’s found a home on my blog. All reviews are spoiler-free and image-free. Opinions are my own.


Life of Melody is a full-color, LGBTQ+/queer graphic novel published, initially, as a webcomic via Hiveworks and now, as part of the Seven Seas + Hiveworks lineup.

The story centers around odd couple Razzmatazz (i.e. Raj) and Bon (i.e. Lancelot) as they raise a little human foundling in a town full of magic, trees, and a very pretty lake. We follow their adventures with their found daughter Melody across the years, witnessing the growth of their partnership from barely cohabitating to something more.

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Review: Tales of Symphonia the Animation (OVA) (ANN)

Ultimately, Tales of Symphonia is a rarity: a solid video game adaptation anime that feels satisfying. It’s the kind of adaptation that both newcomers and existing fans of the series can get something out of. If you’ve played the video games at least once, you’ll get enjoyment out of seeing how everything gets compressed into eleven episodes, for better or worse.

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The World End With You the Animation (TWEWY the Animation) – Episode 12 / Season Finale (ANN)

TWEWY the Animation has been one hell of a ride, going from one of the season’s weakest premieres to a strong, emotional finale. And as I sniffled my way to the end of the ED, I found myself really happy I got to cover this series, both as a critic and as a fan of TWEWY as well. Realistically, this adaptation won’t be for everyone. I’m 100% sure there’s fans who dropped off hard in episode 3. Yet I think that this is one of the most solid video game adaptations in recent years: certainly in the past decade, though… don’t get too mad at me for saying that.

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REVIEW: The World Ends With You Anime is a Satisfying Adaptation — But Why Tho? A Geek Community

The World Ends With You anime drops viewers into a funky-fresh Shibuya that fairly faithfully adapts the video game, with a few missteps along the way.

REVIEW: The World Ends With You Anime is a Satisfying Adaptation — But Why Tho? A Geek Community

REVIEW: Super Cub is Quiet Comfort in a Time of Real-World Trauma — But Why Tho? A Geek Community

Super Cub takes a quiet lens to depression, loneliness and isolation by giving a high school girl a used motorbike that opens up her entire world.

REVIEW: Super Cub is Quiet Comfort in a Time of Real-World Trauma — But Why Tho? A Geek Community

Review: Maesetsu! Opening Act (ANN)

I’ll be frank: I think this episode will probably divide fans. I won’t say how exactly because I don’t know and I don’t Maesetsu! Opening Act most likely isn’t remembered outside of its Fall 2020 debut. In fact, you might have read this review, googled “Maesetsu!” after, and found out that yes, this show is only two seasons old. It wasn’t even a flash in the pan, and probably slid completely under the radar for most viewers. It’s a shame, because Maesetsu! is perfect light-hearted anime fodder, offering up a stress-free show that’s just about a quartet of young women who want to do something that makes them genuinely happy.

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Super Cub – Episode 12 / Season Finale (ANN)

I’ll be frank: I think this episode will probably divide fans. I won’t say how exactly because I don’t know and I don’t engage with fandom in forums much, but I can imagine that folks will leave this episode feeling some emotions, whether they’re positive or negative. I think that’s fair: there’s an argument to be made as to why the girls don’t call for an aIn many ways, this is the best way for Super Cub to end. It’s a beautifully optimistic series about hope, about depression, and about the power of small acts of kindness and taking a chance. While we don’t have the novels and manga in English, I easily see myself sinking into purchasing them as soon as I can. I’m hungry for more of Koguma’s adventures, for more of her friendship with Reiko and Shii, for more of the joy of simple, mundane things like riding a motorbike and going to see somewhere new. I love mundane thrills: I live for cups of tea, for meals and travelling to a new place to see something specific. Mundane delights are so much more powerful than, say, something big and spectacular. That’s a flash in the pan, a firework in the night sky: travelling somewhere new and spending time with friends? That’s the kind of beautiful everyday memory that lasts forever. And isn’t that what Super Cub is celebrating, at its core? Friendship, and healing, and the kindness of others. Those beautiful, impactful memories that are the spice of life, that help us all find the kind of adventure we long for, be it a trip to the secondhand shop or riding bikes with your friends.

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The World End With You the Animation (TWEWY the Animation) – Episode 11 (ANN)

In many ways, I lament how weak the series’ opening arc with Neku and Shiki was in comparison to its incredibly sEpisode 11 slaps. It’s the perfect second-to-last episode before next week’s finale. This is what I dreamed of the show being: plotty, impactful, emotional, and engaging. Even though it had to compress a sizable JRPG into twelve-episodes, TWEWY the Animation is easily one of my favorite adaptations in a long time, doubly so since I already adore the video game (though the Tales of Symphonia anime will forever hold a special place in my heart).

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