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Unique ID Code: 0000110953
Added by: Jitendar Canth
Added on: 8/12/2008 16:26
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    Bumper Anime Review Roundup

    That's bumper as in two weeks worth instead of just one. It in no way implies any additional content, indeed it being the December doldrums, anime news is notable by its absence. Everyone's packed their bags and departed for sunnier climes.

    Free and legal online anime update
    I can't let you get by without some more opportunities to watch anime for the price of a broadband connection, and I begin with Joost. In the past, I have lamented sites like Joost and Hulu and Anime Network who because of annoying licensing restrictions have to region lock their content for the US market. That will teach me to click on links instead of trying sites directly. It turns out that Joost actually has content exclusive for UK viewers, and just by going to the main site and searching, it will give you the results that are appropriate for your IP. And UK viewers do get some anime to watch, although it's still less than our US cousins.

    You can watch, Basilisk, Black Blood Brothers, Cosmo-Warrior Zero, Gun Frontier, Ikki Tousen, Saiyuki, Slayers all dubbed in English, as well as Gun Frontier, Ikki Tousen, Izumo, and Shikabane Hime in Japanese. Note that Slayers and Black Blood Brothers come to UK DVD in the New Year, so this is a great way to try before you buy.

    In other dark corners of the Interweb, Crunchyroll have started streaming the third episode of Time of Eve. It's an awesome Asimov toned futuristic piece on humans living with androids, and is probably the best anime on the Internet right now. The episodes are also spaced far enough apart that each new instalment is worthy of fanfare. Click, watch, and be amazed.

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    I'm spacing the reviews out a bit now, so only four anime reviews for the past two weeks. Still, there were some excellent volumes to savour, beginning with the conclusion of Starship Operators with its third volume. This was an unusual space opera in that it combined the sort of strategic combat employed by chess grandmasters, some serious politicking, and a reality TV show. What's amazing is that it worked so well. What's disappointing is that it was so short. Read more of my thoughts in the review.

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    Every moment of pleasure comes with a commensurate measure of pain, although Daphne In The Brilliant Blue verges on self-abuse. Gratuitous fan-service, coupled with vapid storylines war with a sense of fun and an MSG equivalent morish-ness. You'll enjoy the second volume of Daphne, but you'll hate yourself for doing it. Find out why playing with your remote control will give you hairy palms by clicking the link.

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    Yet more fan-service in Witchblade, but this is a series that is far easier to forgive. The story concludes in volume 6, and the tragic tale of the Witchblade's current owner comes to an end. This has for me been the surprise of the year, with Gonzo's typical graphical excellence for once combined with a robust story, endearing characters, and an emotional heart and strength that many other shows lack. Find out why Witchblade goes to the top of my replay pile by reading the review.

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    And it was all topped off with Naruto 5:1. Yes, this is the ninth instalment of the bright orange ninja, making 27 discs in total of shinobi action, not counting the OVA and movies. You'd think that I'd be getting tired of the little tyke, but it turns out that with this boxset, Naruto is still firing on all cylinders. Sasuke turns to the dark side, and the two former best friends become bitter foes. What more do you want from a Christmas pressie?

    With all the last minute schedule changes and slippages, it's a little hard to keep up with what's coming out when, but MVM's Starship Operators: Volume 3 came out as scheduled on the 1st of December, while Daphne In The Brilliant Blue: Volume 2 is released by them today. Both MVM's Witchblade: Volume 6, and Manga Entertainment's Naruto 5:1 are released next week on the 15th of December. And just a reminder, while you are in the shops today and this week, snaffling up The Dark Knight, make a little space in your shopping trolley for The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, which also comes out today, and is probably the best film that you will get to see this year.

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