Stein’s;gate review

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Greetings! It is I, Hyouin Kyouma! Mad anime reviewer, on a desperate mission! I must hurry, for the organization is hot on my trail now. I am sure of it! El Psy Congru!

Ok, that’s enough of that for now. Hello again everybody desperate enough for entertainment to read this. John Juliano here, back with a brand new Nerd Shit Review! This time, we will be taking a look at one of my favourite shows of all time, Stiens;Gate, the story of a college student with delusions of grandeur who believes himself to be a real life mad scientist. Okabe Rintaro, known as Okarin to his friends and a Hyouin Kyouma to his own damaged mental state, runs an impromptu secret lab out of his apartment with his best friends Daru and Mayushi. They attend various scientific conferences, and at one in particular, he meets a woman named Makise Kurisu, who he later sees murdered. Seconds later, everything changes, and he finds himself back in his lab, before he ever left.

He finds the event cancelled due to a mysterious accident, but at the time thinks nothing of it. Instead he continues working on his latest mad science invention, a way to use a cellphone to activate a microwave. He places a banana in the microwave, and when he activates it with the cell phone, a mysterious burst of energy is released. He finds the banana turned into a jelly-like substance, but reattached to the bunch. Somehow, through forces the show explains much better, the cell phone microwave (temporary name) appears to be a time machine.

After all of this, Okabe, daru, and mayuri the adorable embark on science based hijinks joined by a no longer dead Kurisu and a host of loveable side characters. The show’s science aspect become surprisingly good, with commentary on the condensing effect of time travel on matter, and the inherent dangers it presents. The way they counter this is interesting as well, sending data rather than matter through time, so that all a person’s thoughts and memories show up in the mind of their younger self, with only Okabe being aware of the change. Slowly, Okabe’s irrational fears of a secret organization come to fruition, as he was not the only one interested in time travel.

Visually and musically this show is also very good. The music in particular stands out, with various themes lending a wonderful atmosphere. If the show has one flaw, and all shows do, it’s that in the early parts it becomes bogged down in a pseudo-harem scenario where all the girls seem to have a thing for Okabe. One of them is not even actually female, but rather a very feminine boy. Its irritating, but it passes.

All in all, an excellent show. The early installment strangeness may put some off of this show, but just hold on and it’s well worth the ride. A 9 out of 10, though my bias for the hard sciences may push it up. Both it and its sequel still airing, stein’s;gate 0 are available for free on crunchyroll. Check back soon for more nerd shit reviews! Such is the will of the stein’s;gate!

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Bakemonogatari review

 

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Author’s note: I try not to spoil too much, but some is only natural. Read at your own risk!

Fuck this show is weird. See you all next week!

In all seriousness though, bakemonogatari, and its sequel nisemonogatari, both based on graphic novels of the same title, are possibly the strangest franchise in anime when taken together. Even separate they are strange, but they connect very well, and I recommend both very highly.

The story follows Araragi, a high school student and half vampire who can as a result take a ridiculous amount of abuse, and does so, without lasting harm, as he battles various supernatural happenings after discovering a mildly psychotic girl in his class had her body weight stolen by a crab, and helps her get it back. This is one of the more straightforward stories in the show.

The show has a truly ludicrous amount of cultural, mythological, literary, and pop cultural references, and also more than a fair amount of, lets say, erotic material. It can be highly off putting to many people, particularly to anime newcomers. The large cast of strange characters can also be a bit much for some. The animation, however, is worth it.

Bakemonogatari is a visual wonder. The animation is dynamic, detailed, and fluid, with a unique style entirely its own. Literally anything can be a visual treat, even the mundane. And when the supernatural stuff shows up, it causes jaws to drop and become anchored to the floor. The music is also very good, mirroring the off kilter feel of the show as a whole.

Over, the main draw of this show is not the animation, the story, the fanservice, or anything like that. It is Hitagi Senjogahara. You may recall I mentioned a mildly psychotic weightless girl earlier, well that’s her. She is also perhaps the best female character in any anime I have come across.She describes herself and tsudere, but no simple cliche does her justice. In her first interaction with Araragi, she threatens him with a stapler and exacto knife to either cheek, makes him swear not to tell anyone about her weightlessness, and then staples his cheek anyway, essentially for the kicks. Also, she fights with school supplies.

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Over time, her deep and troubling family history, and her sharp mind, come to the forefront, and her presence all by itself kept me watching, though most of the others are cool too. Araragi can be bland, but call it protagonist syndrom. Over all, Senjogahara is incredible.

And bakemonogatari isn’t bad either. Though it will be far too strange for some, most experienced anime fans, especially fans of dark, supernatural, or surreal highschool adventure shows, will find plenty to love. By an excellent creative team which also worked on the excellent madoka magica show, Bakemonogatari is not one to be missed. After tallying score for various factors on an extremely in depth and in no way fictitious scale I did not just make up, how dare you imply such slander, I award Bakemongatari an 8 out of 10. The series can be enjoyed on Crunchyroll for free if you deal with ads well. See you all next time!