The Chuuni Corner

Anime reviews, Chuunibyou, and other writings

Tag: The Chuuni Corner

Review/discussion about: Koi wa Ameagari no You ni

Koi wa Ameagari no You ni / Episode 3 / Akira and Mr. Kondou standing together

An extraordinary rain

“It’s always calmest before the storm.”

This phrase is known and used for those situations when the good times must surely predate (or even predict) an encroaching ugliness. It’s succinct in usage, and it’s easy to understand. But it’s also rather pessimistic. A doom-and-gloom approach to what life brings on the horizon.

Because that which follows a storm can have a balanced sense of optimism. The warmth of sunshine. The colorful image of a rainbow. The smell of fresh nature. So, those ugly times may arrive without remorse, but goodness can prevail. If nothing else, Koi wa Ameagari no You ni adheres to this stance, promising a phenomenal anime containing a similar happiness.

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Koi wa Ameagari no You ni and the Power of Visual Storytelling

Koi wa Ameagari no You ni / Episode 10 / Akira and Mr. Kondou going to a book fair

What really makes visual storytelling so powerful?

Anime would be nothing, a void on the screen if not for arguably its most inherent, important element: visuals.

Art and animation grant the characters, the audio, and everything else the chance to shine. They’re that next step beyond the pages of a book or a passing conversation with a friend. If nothing else, “anime” literally stems from the word “animation”, indicating quite plainly how vital these visuals are to this medium.

It follows, then, that visual storytelling is the crux of anime. When an anime gets it wrong, a clouded journey ensues. When an anime gets it right, stardom awaits. Koi wa Ameagari no You ni is one such brilliant star in the sky. But why is its visual storytelling so powerful?

This essay will attempt to explain the power behind visual storytelling. First, an understanding of what it is, how it works, and where it comes from will take place. Afterwards, relevant analysis of examples from Koi wa Ameagari no You ni will reinforce the claims made. Hopefully, by the end of this piece, you’ll not only have a better grasp of this idea but also a better appreciation of this wonderful show as well.

Without further ado, let’s get started!

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Banjo’s Top 5 Fall 2017 Anime

Ballroom e Youkoso / Episode 3 / Tatara readying himself for his first live dance

The results are in for Fall 2017….

I can finally put my Fall 2017 anime season behind me!

Not that I’m going to forget about it anytime soon. Since my last list, I became an uncle for the very first time in my life, I survived a medical procedure which luckily gave me a clean bill of health, and I finally passed the 300 review milestone in my writing career. I’m extremely grateful for these three outcomes, and, since I’ll be remembering them for the rest of my life, I’ll subsequently be remembering this interesting season in which they all happened, too.

In turn, these past few months also enlightened me to a rather simple fact: I grow to love this medium more and more with each passing year. Whether I’m watching an ultra-grounded drama about a bunch of college-bound students or a rom-com featuring two gamers at heart, anime always has a new, exciting experience waiting right around the corner.

On that note, let’s take a tiny trip down memory lane for this season. Eleven separate shows were competing for the five spots available. However, only one has claimed the title of Best Anime of Fall 2017.

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Review/discussion about: Kujira no Kora wa Sajou ni Utau

Kujira no Kora wa Sajou ni Utau / Episode 12 / The Mud Whale facing a red-purple sunset

Shipwrecked

Whales are intelligent, majestic creatures. Rulers of the sea by size and by power.

In comparison, Kujira no Kora wa Sajou ni Utau has no size. It has no power.

All it really rules over is the bottom of the ocean – right where it belongs.

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Review/discussion about: Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou

Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou / Episode 1 / Yuuri and Chito staring in awe as the nighttime sky before them

A splendid “vacation”

Unlike the leading ladies of Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou, I probably would not survive the apocalypse.

It first assumes that I’d make it through whatever horrible catastrophe would befall humanity, and I would just-so-happen to be lucky enough to have a fighting chance. But then my prospects would reach zilch real quick when most everything else has disappeared: life’s pleasures, family, some semblance of health.

I wouldn’t know what to do with myself, and I’m sure my mental state would degrade as hopelessness sets in. However, after finishing this anime and seeing the ways in which these girls approach such a world, I’ve learned that there may yet be optimism left to cling onto.

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Review/discussion about: Houseki no Kuni

Houseki no Kuni / Episode 1 / Phos responding to and listening to Cinnabar

Make way for CG stardom

(For a better fundamental understanding of characters, please check out my previous essay on this exact topic, “Houseki no Kuni, Toy Story, and Understanding Characters”.)

The geological timescale views singular months and years as unregistered blips on a radar.

To us regular folk, though, even just a tough few hours at work can seem like an eternity. We value our time greatly, thinking about that joke we heard the other day or looking forward to that cool party in the weeks to come. And, as the saying goes, “Time flies when you are having fun.”

That’s why the here and now is so precious; the present is a valuable existence we can almost never take for granted. In this time, a curious anime titled Houseki no Kuni emerged, and the fact that we’re lucky enough to have it around should not go unnoticed.

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Houseki no Kuni, Toy Story, and Understanding Characters

Houseki no Kuni (left) / Toy Story (right) / Phos and Woody smiling

Can a character be understood in a more refined way?

What does an anime about a bunch of gemstones and a film franchise about a box of playthings have in common?

If you said, “They both feature talking inanimate objects,” you’d be correct. If you said, “They both are really awesome projects,” you’d be correct as well. And if you said, “They both represent landmarks in the CG space within their respective mediums,” well, guess what? You’d be correct once again.

There’s at least one more major commonality between them: Houseki no Kuni and Toy Story each host a diverse cast of characters who build their tales into how we view them today. So, having recently finished the former and having always being a big fan of the latter, a question arose in my brain: What really does go into making a character?

This essay will take a look-see into characters. How they are defined, what impact they contain, and why understanding the distinctions among them is worthwhile. Furthermore, for comparative purposes, relevant examples from Houseki no Kuni and Toy Story (what with its fourth iteration on the way) will attempt to illustrate the topics at hand.

Hopefully, the approach and the examples will make it easier to grasp these concepts while also adding in a bit of extra fun. If nothing else, it should serve as a primer for those new to these points and a refresher for those who already have a knack for them.

Without further ado, let’s get started!

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Review/discussion about: Fate/Apocrypha

Fate/Apocrypha / Episode 5 / Jeanne looking out over a valley

An average destiny

The online definition of “apocrypha” from Merriam-Webster states the following: “writings or statements of dubious authenticity”.

For those people in-universe who somehow got their hands on Shakespeare’s perspective of the trials and tribulations within Fate/Apocrypha, they would most likely agree that such a word fits his work all too well.

But for the Masters and Servants who underwent these troubles themselves, they would obviously disagree, stating that fate decreed it so.

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Review/discussion about: Just Because!

Just Because! / Episode 2 / Mio and Eita standing together at the aquarium

Loudness begone

Like a couple of the characters in Just Because!, I too went through the grueling process of test taking in the hopes of earning high scores and favorable university-related invitations. They went to cram school, so they have a one-up on me in terms of drive, but, as someone who empathizes with their position, I don’t envy them one bit.

As for the tale told around them and their close friends, the results may just barely pass the mark.

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Review/discussion about: Sword Art Online Movie: Ordinal Scale

Sword Art Online Movie: Ordinal Scale / Kirito, Yui, and Asuna standing together

The big screen for a big franchise

As technology advances, so do the ways in which we consume its generated content.

Two of the more intriguing concepts warp our very perceptions: virtual reality (called VR) and augmented reality (called AR). VR puts us, the player, into a computerized world as if it were all we have ever known. AR keeps us in our understood space but instead adds those computerized elements as if they were a natural extension.

Both have their cool points and oddities, their benefits and detriments. In Sword Art Online Movie: Ordinal Scale, AR becomes the prominent vehicle, and its usage leads down the next crazy path for this isekai-centric series.

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