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Added by: Jitendar Canth
Added on: 23/2/2009 14:37
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    Anime Review Roundup (Updated)

    Full Metal Alchemist Again…

    What is that old adage about, if it ain't broke? No one listens to old adages anymore, which is a shame. I've already reviewed the brilliant Full Metal Alchemist series on this site, as well as the feature film, and my love for the show is boundless. It's a piece of anime perfection that I cherish and hold beyond compare. Apparently I'm in a minority, as there are people who consider it inferior to the manga, from which it diverges. Prepare for a whole lot of déjà vu, as this April a new Full Metal Alchemist series begins airing in Japan, with the original cast returning for their roles, telling the same story over again. The only benefit that I can see, is that this time around it's widescreen. Here's a trailer.

    Death Note Again…

    This is more of an addendum to last week's announcement of a television showing for the film, rather than anything new, but given the rarity of anything anime based on British television, I figure it's worth saying twice. It turns out that not only do Film4 have the rights to show Death Note, but they have the sequel as well. It's a good thing too, as the two films are really one story split in twain, and any significant gap between the two is just tormenting the audience. Dates and times are as follows.

    Death Note - Film4 - Saturday February 28th, 10:55 pm
    Death Note: The Last Name - Film4 - Saturday March 7th, 11:20 pm

    Set your PVRs accordingly, although given that it's Film4, expect repeats in short order. No mention of the third film at this time, and long may it stay that way.

    Spiral Slips Again...

    If you've been anticipating Revelation Films' release of the Spiral boxset, then you'll have to prolong the anticipation, as it has slipped again in the release schedules. It's due now on the 30th of March 2009. Make a note in your anime diaries. What do you mean you don't have anime diaries?

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    My reviewing week began with a live action adaptation of an anime/manga title as well, and it's one that I have been raving and enthusing about for over a year now, since I first encountered Mushi-shi in animated form. It's a turn of the century bit of spookiness with a strong emphasis on nature and its interaction with humanity. Alas, the anime has been on hiatus for a while now, so while waiting for the final volume, I chanced upon the live action version, simply titled Mushishi, and directed by none other than Katsuhiro Otomo of Akira fame. See if the movie lives up to the source material by clicking the link.

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    Then it was time for the debut of a brand new series, although you could be forgiven for a hint of déjà vu. Solty Rei is a Gonzo series, a blending of 2D and 3D animation, a story set in the near future following a cataclysmic event in an unnamed city, where survivors have been healed with cyborg technology, and are now called Resembles, where a hard-bitten bounty hunter searches for his daughter, missing for twelve years since the disaster, and where a mysterious, and cute green haired Resemble named Solty literally falls into his lap, bringing with her a whole lot of trouble, and a dark hidden enigma. It's pretty much like the majority of Gonzo's output then, but with a hardboiled and noirish edge that sets it apart. With six episodes on the first disc instead of the usual four, I have even more of an opinion to impart.

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    Last week I raved, gibbered and squealed my appreciation for the first part of Welcome to the NHK. This week I dissolved into a puddle of fangasm by completing the series and taking a look at Welcome to the NHK: Part 2. Tatsuhiro Sato is still out of work, out of education, and socially withdrawn to the point of living in self-imposed isolation in his apartment. He's still paranoid, and hallucinating, but with the aid of an unexpected seventeen-year-old Guardian Angel, Misaki Nakahara, he's hoping to find his way back into normal society. But rehabilitation is never that easy, and the second half of the series takes us into even darker territory, as we meet even more of the dispossessed, the disillusioned, the detritus of modern society. It's darkly comic too, which is why you have to prepare for a tsunami of gushing when you click the link to my review.

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    Revelation are finally getting back on track with their anime releases, starting by completing the Tsubasa series with Volume 6. It's the anime equivalent of Sliders, with a group of friends travelling from world to world, trying to recover the memories of Princess Sakura, the one true love of archaeologist Syaoran. Find out why this is truly an anime for everyone, when you click my review.

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    Apparently, not everyone likes anime. While I'm still trying to get my head around that bizarre concept, I'd like you to consider some animation from outside Japan, to keep your horizons broad and experiences fresh. My colleague David Beckett has taken a look at two Adult Swim properties, the Season One collections of Frisky Dingo and The Venture Bros. Click the links to partake of his erudition.

    Funimation's Welcome to the NHK Part 2 is available for import from Region 1, while Revolver Entertainment released Mushishi last year in the UK. MVM's Solty Rei Volume 1, and Revelation's Tsubasa Volume 6 are both released on March 16th. Frisky Dingo and Venture Bros. are released by Revolver Entertainment today.

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