EVO was this weekend and there were some great matches in all of the featured games!! For those that don’t know what EVO is, its the biggest fighting game tournament of the year. If you like fighting games EVO is a must watch even if you can’t catch it live at least watch highlights on YouTube. I am not going to go over everything that happened at EVO so this will be short, but just know SonicFox took home the medal for Mortal Kombat again this year so no changes there and the SoulCalibur 6 grand final was amazing, check it out below.
On to why we are gathered here today. Out of EVO also came the new DLC reveal for SoulCalibur 6: Cassandra!!! That’s right she is finally OFFICIALLY revealed, but if you are a fan and have been following the news we all new this was coming. First of all she looks awesome!!! Secondly, at the end of the trailer it seems like they teased someone else. There camera focuses on a mask that is laying on the ground, i have been trying to figure out who that mask could belong to but I got nothing so far. Check out the reveal trailer below and speculate for yourself.
Last but not least another big reveal for SoulCalibur 6 is below, if you haven’t seen or heard I won’t spoil it for you.
I have been taking a break form the SoulCalibur 6 scene but I am excited to jump back into the fray!! I’m Hype!!!! What about you?
So, it has been a while now huh?
Over the past few months, watching anime has gotten less and less enjoyable for me. It has become more of a chore than anything, just doing it because that’s what I do and not really because I want to. Whether it is the number of terrible exposition dumps or the often stale animation that I encounter in almost every anime I watch, I don’t know. But something has changed. It wasn’t like I have watched too many bad shows or anything, I have watched a lot of terrible English movies but I still love watching them (Here’s my letterboxd if you know what that is. Check that shit out). It was almost the opposite, where most anime are so painfully forgettable that it makes the whole anime experience just that. I recently made a MyAnimeList account just so that I could see the average score that I give anime. And while a 6.22 isn’t exactly bad or anything, it is ultimately forgettable and pointless. Good but ehhh… The excitement and interest I got from watching ‘Little Witch Academia’ isn’t there anymore. It was almost as if I was beginning to fall off.
So one day I decided that I wouldn’t do this anymore. Not that I would stop watching anime or anything. My favorite anime of all time is an anime so I would never lose my hope that easily, at least for now. But I decided that I wouldn’t watch normal anime anymore. I would only watch the classics. Those that had aired years ago but stood the test of time and are still known today. I didn’t want to watch just another anime. This had to be great. And what a good way to start that off with Neon Genesis Evangelion.
Neon Genesis Evangelion, directed and written by Hideaki Anno, follows Shinji Ikari, a 14-year old boy, who told that he needs to pilot an Evangelion, a sort of mech robot, or otherwise earth is doomed. He tells everyone that he won’t be able to do it since he has never done anything like it before, but as more and more pressure builds up he climbs into the robot and saves the earth. Or at least for now. And while the show starts just like another mecha show, it slowly turns into a character drama about mental health and the everlasting change in the human mind. And that’s the best part of the show. While there are many good anime about mental health like A Silent Voice or arguably Your Name, I find that too many of them don’t take it seriously enough. While I haven’t watched an anime that truly disrespects people with mental illnesses, but too many of them are way too comedic. So when I watched this and saw how serious and true to reality that depression and anxiety were portrayed in the show I was very glad. It showed how Hideaki truly knew what depression felt like, so knowing that he was depressed at the time wasn’t a surprise. It made Asuka an extremely good character in my eyes. While I found her charming and fun in the early episodes, which I was surprised by since I usually find Tsundere archetypes annoying, her backstory was what made her so good. Even in the early episodes, we see Asuka often saying that she’s the best and that she’s already an adult. That she is good enough. And while it sounded normal in the beginning, at one point I started to realize how it wasn’t exactly that. We see how her relationship with her parents has only made her less emotionally controllable, and how it has affected her future. She keeps telling herself that she is better than everyone else because that’s the only way for her to control herself a little bit. That her parents didn’t give her enough attention as a child so she can only hide it by telling herself that she’s the best and already an adult. That is until it doesn’t work anymore. Until it becomes too much. The elevator scene in episode 22 shows this very well so I was surprised to see how much infamy it has gotten. How she tries to ignore the problem until it becomes too much and the only way she can escape it is by telling the world that she is better than everyone so she can feel just a little bit better.
And this sort of change in character becomes very consistent. Shinji becoming more of an opinionated person as he meets new and more vibrant people, needing to become an adult and take on bigger responsibilities, and again with Asuka showing how parents can have a big effect on their children. And I found all of that very interesting. Character development is common in media but the amount of it here was very surprising. I might’ve not have understood what happened all the time, but I could often tell what they were supposed to mean which I think is more important in some cases.
On the technical side, I was very impressed. The cinematography does an extremely good job at conveying the relationships between the characters, the colors always fit the tone of every scene and the animation never feels too stiff. But I had a very big appreciation for one certain thing though, that being the mech fights. Not necessarily because they were well animated or choreographed, though they were for sure. But I loved how they always make them feel like team efforts. In episode 11 there’s a blackout in the base, meaning that they can’t activate the Eva’s like before. An angel would be the worst thing that could happen, so it does of course. It seems hopeless for them, a spider angel is walking through the city and nothing can stop it. But there is still hope, and everyone works together to manually activate the Eva’s with a lot of hard work. And it shows how it’s not just the pilots who have a role in defeating the angels, but everyone. How the fights are never just punching the angels until they are dead, but that there’s an actual strategy to it, like when they use all of Japans electricity to shoot off a massive beam at an angle or when they use the Eva’s as bait like fishing. It was always fascinating to see how the team would overcome a problem, and that’s what I want from mecha shows.
In the end, Neon Genesis Evangelion is both a psychological drama and a mecha show and it does both of those aspects incredibly well! And while I have my problems with the show like a few lines that felt a little too on-the-nose and expository, I think Neon Genesis Evangelion is an amazing show that might’ve gotten me back into anime again.
So for this week, everyone I decided to go with the theme and go with this one. To the Abandoned Sacred Beast. This is a great read and is very fun when it comes to how mythologies are mixed in with the story. So starting out everyone in this one platoon/squad was gifted with a specific power which helped them win this war that happened before the story starts. The power is being able to transform into a certain creature that the people are a kin to somehow.
So the soldiers are all given whatever accepted them. These are all the people that passed a low percentage “virus” which could of killed them instead of giving them their powers. As all of these soldiers in the army have now seen. You get the power you can control it, which they did in the war; but now like a “virus” it is taking over their bodies where they are not able to change back into their human forms. Little by little they lose their minds as well and almost like “venom” the drug that Bane in Batman uses to become more powerful and rage out. All of these soldiers are going home and at some point being enraged and killing people.
Now where the next part happens one of the more human monsters, a vampire, has started to use the process and make more monsters here and there. Inside of their own country he is taking over parts of it for the cost of these once normal soldiers now turned beast, to make a nation just for them. This also does not allow the old government to take part in helping the people on that side of the line once so ever. So with the nation in shambles and on the verge of a civil war; what will become of the nation when it implodes on itself?
A very good read also written and drawn by the same person that makes “Tales of Wedding Rings.” This is a great series to jump into, if you like mythological creatures and a government stance in your manga. Try it out for yourself. I think you may like it quite a lot.
Stay tuned for more to come, everyone! v^_^v
What’s up Shoganates!!
If you read my last article you already know that I’ve been watching A lot of Miru Tights…along with Vinland Saga, Dr. Stone, Fire Team, along with the ongoing Demon Slayer and Black Clover. Let me start this by saying the latest episode of Black Clover was DOPE! Julius NovaChrono is a beast and without spoiling anything for those who haven’t seen it yet, that episode was very good even though you could see what happened coming a mile away.
That said, yes I have been mainly watching those anime I mentioned above but I decided to give a couple more a try and here is what I think about them so far.
I’ll start with BEM. Apparently this is a remake, I didn’t know that but a good friend of mine told me so, and I believe him. Having never seen the original I’m going into this one fresh and I must say I am enjoying it so far. Story wise its nothing fancy; demons do good deeds so that they can one day become human, w/e. My fascination comes from the soundtrack! It sounds like a Cowboy Bebop/ Samurai Champloo/ Megalo Box chill vibe, Japanese Jazz. Im really vibin it.
To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts caught me off guard. I honestly clicked on it on a whim and the first episode was meh. I usually like to give an anime 3 episodes to catch me so I watched the next few episodes and I will argue that this anime has some hidden depth. The story is about an elite group of warriors that were constructed to win a war. This group of warriors is led by a captain of course and he seems like a bad-A. They do there job and the war is now over and the world has no use for them anymore…sounds familiar right? Here’s the anime twist, these guys all had special powers. No, like for real special powers, they could each turn into a different creature. Not Animorphs style or Killing Bites for that matter but they could turn into some pretty mean looking creatures. For example, one guy turned into a dragon, one into a 3 headed snake, and one into a minotaur. Pretty cool huh? Oh and get this they retained their human intelligence too, that right they didn’t revert to a beast brain. Whats the catch? Some of them eventually started to go bonkers. The Captain makes an oath with the Incarnates (as they are called) that if they go bonkers the only one to kill them would be another one of them (only Incarnates kill Incarnates). That was all like the first episode, lots a background information and world building that didn’t really seem all that unique or robust. Then we hit the second episode and from here the story actually gains depth. Without spoiling too much the Captain is now hunting down his former comrades. He seems to have retained his sanity but some of his warriors have not.
The Captain’s troops can all suffer from this loss of sanity. It really seems like its a matter of when, not if. Its a side effect from whatever was used to give them that ability. So in the second episode (SPOILER ALERT) the daughter of one of the Incarnates witnesses the Captain killing her father and she sets out on a vendetta to kill the Captain. When she finds him and eventually talks to him she decides to stick with him to find out WHY her dad had to be killed.
I am excited to see where this anime goes with the story because it has potential to really explore some deep aspects of war and the after effects. Clearly the Incarnates that still exist after the war are suffering from some form of PTSD along with the fact they have this side effect from becoming Incarnates in the first place. They all had to come to grasp with the fact that they were heroes but now are completely unneeded and in some cases unwanted. They once had human appearance/ personality but now are stuck as the beast they once transformed into. They are suffering and the Captain is the only one that can ease that pain by killing them and I’m sure as we progress through the episodes we will see that, that responsibility is taking its toll on the Captain as well. There are some other aspects to the show than just that but I think the biggest case for watching To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts is the internal struggle and suffering the Captain will have to go through to fulfill his oath to his comrades.
Am I off on this or am I spot on for once? Let me know what you think!