Series Review – Long Riders!

Long Riders! (hereafter referred to without the exclamation point) is a series which follows first year university student Kurata Ami as she becomes interested in cycling and embarks on a number of cycling-related activities with her friends. I wrote up episodic posts for the series which you can find here, so you can see my views on the series in more detail if you were interested.

longriders1008As the typical ‘protagonist who has no hobbies or strong passions prior to the commencement of the series’, Ami sees someone riding a cute folding bike one day and decides to take up cycling. Together with her childhood friend Aoi, and new friends Hinako, Yayoi, and Saki, she transforms from a beginner into an experienced cyclist, participating in different activities and also building friendships. Long Riders is packed with cute cycling and cute food, two things which I find enjoyable. Continue reading

The Return of Pasta?

This is a quick post to say hello to my readers after my long absence. I suffer from an as yet undiagnosed chronic illness (I affectionately refer to it as ‘mystery chronic illness’ owing to lack of a better name, although I can tell you a number of things which I do not have) which flared up to the point where I was unable to read any quantity of text from a backlit screen without feeling extremely dizzy for a few weeks. Having my energy levels return to normal (for me) seems to be a pretty slow process, but I’m gradually feeling a bit better and trying to get back into the schedule of things I do regularly to create routine.

One small positive of all this very quiet downtime is I have watched a lot of anime! A lot of anime! I’m excited to be able to hopefully write about some of the series I have seen and and thoughts I have had while lying quietly on the lounge. Content may come out fairly slowly though as I recognise the need to take things easy and not put too much pressure on myself to put content out on a regular basis.

Owing to wanting to take things easy, I’ve decided to stop doing episodic posts for the time being. I enjoy reading other people’s episodic posts (particularly of shows which I know that I won’t care to watch myself but have some level of interest as to how they play out), but owing to the time pressure, or at least the perceived time pressure of needing to have an episodic post out in a timely fashion, I don’t feel that it’s realistic for me to commit to posting. I’d rather use my blogging time to write analytical posts or reviews, both of which I’d been finding more fun to write leading up to my break. I’m still very much feeling things out and trying new things in order to see what works and what doesn’t work for me, so this may be subject to change later on.

Coming up, I’m hoping to do a season preview of the Spring anime season and highlight some shows I’m excited about which are coming up, share a few reviews, hopefully write something about the amazing Kemono Friends, but overall, I’ll just be trying to take things easy. I probably won’t do the crazy thing I did at the end of last season where I tried to push out reviews for all the series I’d watched in the couple of weeks following their conclusion. I have watched a number of shows this season (including a whole pile of shorts), and I do hope to share my thoughts about them on the blog at some point in the future!

I’m planning to spend a bit of time trying to catch up on what other people have been writing, but I feel that getting up to date with everything would be somewhat insurmountable. So, if you saw something which was really good (or you wrote something cool yourself), if you post it in the comments I’d be happy to check it out! I’m hoping to take things slowly but be a bit more on top of everything in the coming weeks.lucy02

Romance, Love, and Understanding

Happy Valentines Day to all my lovely readers! It’s technically not Valentines day in Australia still, but it is Valentines Day somewhere, and I think that counts! I thought I’d take this opportunity to speak about relationships in my favourite romantic* anime, I Can’t Understand What My Husband Is Saying.

*All the romantic anime I like are romantic comedies which are heavy on the comedy. These probably barely count, but I’m not a romantic by any stretch of the imagination. Continue reading

Piacevole 05 – Sangria

Hello everyone and sorry for the lack of posts last week. We’ve been having a run of extremely hot weather, which makes me feel really ill and exhausted and makes it hard to write. I’m going to have to see if I can be a bit more proactive about scheduling posts if I want to keep up a reasonable rate of content on my blog until summer is over (and as it’s Australia, sometimes very hot weather can run well into March). I’m hoping to get some thoughts on the final episodes of Long Riders as well as some overall thoughts on the series posted this week, although this is a bit dependent on the weather.

piace0505This episode is a continuation of the events of the previous episode, where Sara talks about how much she dislikes Italian food. Morina asks about the differences between Italian and Japanese food and is told that both types of cuisines were developed using the different locally available ingredients in order for people to have a healthy lifestyle. I think that this is slightly odd because as an Australian we barely use natively available ingredients at all, but I also think it rings true. While it’s fairly easy these days to get all kinds of different foods, regional cuisine was just meals made with the sorts of ingredients that were available to people locally. Continue reading

I Like Shorts

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Replace easy to wear with easy to watch and you get the idea

If you’ve hung around this blog for any length of time, you have probably figured out that I enjoy short-form anime, or anime shorts, or sometimes I just call them shorts. While I’ve seen some people create additional categories, I’d consider an anime short to be any show which has an episode runtime noticeably less than the regular 20-25 minute runtime of regular series. This can be anything from under 2 minutes up to about 15 minutes.

Anime shorts are a relatively new thing to become available to English-speaking anime viewers. Back when anime was either fan-subbed or received a DVD release some time after it had finished airing in Japan, the focus was mainly on things which a wide number of viewers would be interested in. Most shorts tend to be a bit niche and quirky, and often don’t have the overarching plot and impressive 2D visuals which draw many people to anime, so they rarely got any attention. With the increase of legal online anime streaming, English subtitled shorts are far more readily available. I think this is a great thing! Continue reading

Piacevole 04 – Spring Roll Caponata

In this episode, the staff of Festa are thrown into a panic because of an important customer; Teiri Niza. He is the owner of a high-class Japanese restaurant but likes to come to Festa to eat sometimes. It seems like owing to the easy-going way the restaurant is run, Morina wasn’t aware of his coming or his importance until she arrives at work that day, but she gets caught up in the bustle.

Continue reading

Series Review – Agatha Christie’s Great Detectives Poirot and Marple

Agatha Christie’s Great Detectives Poirot and Marple is a 39 episode anime series based on the writings of Agatha Christie. The series covers a variety of cases taken from Christie’s novels and short stories. As a fan of Agatha Christie, when I heard about this series it was pretty much a must-watch for me. Agatha Christie’s work still has immense popularity throughout the world and I enjoy seeing different screen adaptations of her writings, so seeing an anime adaptation was definitely a bit of a treat. Continue reading