The Chuuni Corner

Anime reviews, Chuunibyou, and other writings

Tag: Spring 2015

Review/discussion about: Hibike! Euphonium

Get motivated

Get motivated

(As supplementary material for this review, please refer to my writing on the mood-setting for this anime, Hibike! Euphonium and Setting the Mood)

Most people might think going through school is “only” to get an education. That is well and good, and indeed the major purpose. Accruing years of knowledge makes someone more well-rounded and capable as a person, more so than not learning the “ABCs,” integrals of calculus, or the implications of the American Civil War. A smaller reason, but one that is just as important, is a bit more personable: providing motivation. Schooling houses mentors in the form of advisers, teachers looking to instill long-lasting lessons, and professors that give impossible opportunities, who all want nothing more than to make their students shoot for the stars. Hibike! Euphonium shows that motivation is not easy to come by – this is partly why education requires so much time and effort – but once it is obtained, the need and the want to reach new heights never leaves.

Read the rest of this entry »

Hibike! Euphonium and Setting the Mood

What goes into setting the mood?

What goes into setting the mood?

An Introduction

Spring 2015 has ended (despite me still reviewing!), with some pretty interesting anime graciously provided for us. One in particular caught my attention: Hibike! Euphonium. Now, I know what you might be thinking. “Banjo, you only like it because it’s KyoAni, the same people who crafted the glorious Chu2Koi and Chu2Ren anime!”

…Maybe.

I won’t lie and say that I love KyoAni for partly that reason. Other positives of the studio include: their ability to do adorable better than anyone, their stories are often filled with heart, and they enjoy moving from one series to the next to flex their prowess. But here (and while these previous three aspects are in full force), they do something expertly once more: setting the mood.

The following essay will be looking at what the heck this thing called mood really is, how it’s used, and ultimately how it’s composed to create not just the right atmosphere but also those oh so magical moments we come to remember. Hopefully, by the end of this piece, you’ll have both a greater respect for mood and higher appreciation of Hibike! Euphonium overall.

Without further ado, let’s get started!

Read the rest of this entry »

Review/discussion about: Plastic Memories

Memories last a lifetime

Memories last a lifetime

I have talked about memories in other reviews that I have written, and it is fascinating the things you start to recollect when you begin contemplating that word. I remember this time when I played indoor soccer as the goalie. I will never forget how, during one match, I managed to kick the ball from our end into their net due to a super lucky bounce. I rarely scored (I was not very good) so such a rare occurrence combined with the manner in which it happened is something that will stick with me forever. There are also those not-so-happy memories; I remember my grandpa’s funeral, watching my mother and her siblings weeping for their father, with me, my brother, and my other cousins carrying the casket. It is one of the saddest moments I have ever experienced, with me still owning the cotton glove to this day. Soccer or family, happy or sad, memories are, as Plastic Memories somewhat depicts, a beautiful existence that should not be tossed aside but instead embraced for as long as humanly (and Giftia-ly) possible.

Read the rest of this entry »

Review/discussion about: Nisekoi:

What are we

What are we “allowed” to expect?

Nisekoi: has a strange title when you stare at it. It is the second season of an anime that is quite popular, but instead of giving it a number or some kind of continuation phrase, it simply adds a colon to the end of its name. It seems quite out of place, perhaps making you wonder, “Why is that even there?” Traditionally colons in sentences are used in conjunction with lists or highlighting something specific. Or to put it another way, a colon is used when wishing to speak about a relevant thing or set of things. But Nisekoi: has nothing after its colon, and the reason for this becomes obvious when thought about briefly: there is “nothing” to say about the show. While this spells certain doom for the anime as a whole, it at least provides the audience with an interesting question pertaining to expectations.

Read the rest of this entry »

Review/discussion about: Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches

Short on quality, but not kisses or witches

Short on quality, but not kisses or witches

I think it is safe to say that everyone has a wish they want fulfilled. Money, power, and fame are the common ones, as they seem to be the most wanted. But money, power, and fame are not everything. More often than not, what we need most is not a shiny new car or rabid fans but instead something a bit more universal. A shoulder to lean on, a friend to hang out with, or a partner to hug; one of the greatest aspects in life are the relationships we share with the people around us. For it is these very relationships that do what those previous three wishes cannot: make us happy for a lifetime. Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches is all about relationships, wishes, and of course witches, that provides an average outing overall.

Read the rest of this entry »

Review/discussion about: Punch Line

A 50/50 toss up

A 50/50 toss up

Carl Sagan, a famous physicist, once said, “Extinction is the rule. Survival is the exception.” Whether we are conscious of it or not, our lives are filled with numerous instances of us simply trying to survive. Having a healthy diet keeps our body working well whereas wearing a seatbelt in a car provides immeasurable safety. Even something as simple as looking both ways when crossing the street could potentially save our life. We do these things – increasing our chances to live – because we do not want to die. Sounds rudimentary, but there is not a whole lot more to it than that; we all want to experience a “supremely happy future.” Punch Line is apocalyptic aversion incarnate, that’s random in nature but not quite memorable.

Read the rest of this entry »

Review/discussion about: Fate/Stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works 2nd Season

Not quite unlimited

Not quite unlimited

Everyone has their own set of convictions. Whether they are religiously, politically, or morally based, there are certain creeds that we, as individuals, follow. Depending on the ideals we hold, our very person is shaped, directing the lives we lead and the paths that we take. For me, I uphold a simple one: “a little kindness goes a long way.” So I try to do just that. I hold the door for others, give my thanks whenever I can, and call my family to check up on them. Small stuff, and probably pretty common too, but such actions have nonetheless made me into the kind of man that I am today, and hopefully who I’ll be in the future. Fate/Stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works 2nd season hones in on the convictions we maintain, but it never escapes its own faults to make its beliefs worth listening to.

Read the rest of this entry »

Review/discussion about: Hello!! Kiniro Mosaic

Say hello to cuteness

Say hello to cuteness

In elementary school, my four closest buddies and I would call ourselves “The Five Musketeers.” That’s because we did pretty much everything together while at school: sports, group activities, hanging out, making jokes, etc. We always had a blast and created memories that will last a lifetime. While we slowly drifted apart to the point that we no longer see each other, I’ll always remember them as the best friends that I ever had. Hello!! Kiniro Mosaic follows a similar troupe, showcasing impossibly cute moments while demonstrating the bonds of friendship in a familiar way.

Read the rest of this entry »

Review/discussion about: Show By Rock!!

Music that needed less rock and more substance

Music that needed less rock and more substance

There’s this game series that is pretty popular, or at least, it was during its heyday. This video game is called “Guitar Hero.” I was never a music guy myself – I couldn’t play brass instruments, the “cool” drums, or jam out on an acoustic. But I had “Guitar Hero,” where playing was simpler, screw-ups were okay, and I got to have fun with a whammy bar. I got so good at the game that I managed to beat “Through the Fire and Flames,” considered one of the best “boss battles” in gaming history. I was capable of making music, albeit dumbed down, but it was music nonetheless. With it brought happiness and plentiful memories that I’ll never forget. Show By Rock!! looks at “the power of music,” but unfortunately becomes tone-deaf along the way.

Read the rest of this entry »

Review/discussion about: Owari no Seraph

In need of a guardian angel

In need of a guardian angel

When my brother and I were growing up at home, we always did everything together. We hung out with our neighbor friends, rode bikes, played video games; the normal, sibling stuff. But I’m the older brother, and as the older brother, I was “in charge.” There’s a distinct memory my brother always likes to bring up to sort of torment me for my immaturity. Basically, whenever my little brother wouldn’t listen to me, I’d warn him, “If you don’t do as I say, I won’t be your friend anymore.” And he would always listen. Eventually, he realized that my words were moot, but today I still feel bad about treating my brother meanly. He’s my family first and foremost, and I would do everything I could to protect him. Owari no Seraph is about brothers, family, and protecting the ones you love, but it turns out, it’s the one that needs the saving.

Read the rest of this entry »