Category Archives: Reviews

Astro Boy Book One and Two Volume Edition Review

Astro Boy 1

Astro Boy is written and illustrated by Osamu Tezuka. And published by Kobunsha and Kodansha in Japan. And published in English by Madman Entertainment and Dark Horse Comics.

Astro Boy is a manga series that revolves around a robot built by Dr. Tenma and modeled after his sadly deceased son. At first Tenma is happy with Astro, but for some reason soon comes to despise him. After Tenma kicks him out, and a few other events occur that I won’t mention, Astro goes on fantastic adventures and saves the day on more than one occasion. This volume edition contains several of Tezuka’s original illustrations.

The art was exactly as I expected it to be, amazing. There is a reason why Tezuka’s known as the godfather of manga. However, I did notice a couple of mistakes. For example, sometimes Astro would have his boots, but in the next panel they would disappear. This wasn’t really a problem for me, though, it was just something I noticed.

The storyline was also just as amazing as I expected. There were certain points of the stories that I found particularly creative. For example, there was a torture device in one story that looked like a cube and was filled with balls of polyester. The bad guys would put someone in it and fill the cube with water, thus expanding the balls of polyester and crushing the victim. But, as stated by the bad guys, it’s okay because it’s just a comic strip.

Anyway, I definitely recommend Astro Boy if you haven’t already checked it out. It is really worth the read. And hopefully I’ll get better at reviewing comic books and manga in the future so I’ll have more to say about them.

Later.

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Shugo Chara (Anime) Review

Shugo Chara is written by Peach-Pit, and is published by Kodansha. The anime is directed by Kenji Yasuda, and licensed by Crunchyroll.

Shugo Chara is written by Peach-Pit, and is published by Kodansha. The anime is directed by Kenji Yasuda, and licensed by Crunchyroll.

Shugo Chara is an anime with a fairly interesting concept, although, I think that it is also one of those animes that you either like or don’t like. The storyline follows Hinamori Amu and her friends as the try to keep an evil company by the name of Easter from finding the Embryo, a magical heart egg that can grant any wish.

Heart eggs represent the dream in every child’s heart, and sometimes the eggs come out from the child and hatch into a Guardian Character. Amu and her friends all have these Guardian Characters, and can use them to character transform in order to stop the contaminated X eggs from causing havoc. Normally, a person only has one or two guardian characters, but Amu is special and has three, and later on, four guardian characters.

Anyway, as previously mentioned, Shugo Chara has an interesting concept, and I enjoyed the storyline quite a bit. This anime falls into the “Magical Girl” category, and while I’ve never watched Sailor Moon, I imagine that it is similar in its presentation as Sailor Moon is. Which brings me to the pacing. While the pacing is generally good throughout the show, there are some episodes that caused me to wonder why they were doing what they were doing in the episode. These episode really weren’t needed as the didn’t really provide anything for the storyline, they were just there to be there. But, while they weren’t really needed, they weren’t necessarily boring. They were also well spaced out, so it wasn’t much of an issue in the long run. I have found that animes with similar presentations do the same thing, so maybe it has something to do with the genre? I’m not sure.

Alright, next is the animation! As expected from an official anime, the animation is smooth and portrays the characters movements well. Their movements match their emotions extremely well, even if you didn’t know exactly what was going on, you would be able to tell how a character felt about it. There’s one character who acts like a jerk most of the time so no one that he cares about gets involved in his problems, and his movements subtly give away the fact that he’s faking being a jerk. Although, if you don’t know that he’s faking it, you probably won’t notice it, just like with a real human being. This really impressed me when I noticed it, as I had not previously noticed until I found out that he was faking it.

The art also holds up to anime standards. Personally, though, I thought the eyes were a little too big at first, but later on I realized that they added to the overall art style of the series.

The characters in the show are pretty solid. Even though they have super powers, they are still very believable characters as they still go to school and face problems that some real people face. Like, being who you are verses who everyone thinks you are, and liking someone but being unsure if they like you back are examples of some of the problems the characters face. And one of the characters was almost kidnapped once, which causes her parents to be super protective and blame each other for the incident ever even happening. This blame game causes them to constantly fight, and causes previously mentioned character to wish with all her heart that she could make them smile and laugh again. Out of all the characters, though, my favorite would have to be Ikuto. He’s really cool, and usually behaves similarly to a stray cat. I’m a really big fan of human characters that either have cat ears (these characters get bonus points if they also have a cat tail), or behave like a cat, and Ikuto is all of these things.

Overall Shugo Chara was an interesting and fun watch. There isn’t an English Dub out, but if you don’t mind watching it subbed then I would definitely recommend it.

Before signing off, I’m going to leave you a picture of Ikuto being a kitty-kitty and a video with my favorite song in the series.

Tsukiyomi Ikuto 2

This video is uploaded by iAznReDii

Later.

Big Hero 6 Manga Volume One Review (Slight Spoiler Warning)

Big Hero Six 1

Big Hero 6 (Manga) is owned by Marvel and Disney, and is written by Haruki Ueno, and translated by Alethea and Athena Nibley.

 

Alright, I was planing on having One Piece be the next thing I reviewed, but due to the pacing, that has been delayed for now. So, instead, I decided to review the first volume of the Big Hero 6 manga! I’ll admit, I didn’t think that this was going to be translated to English, which made me sad because I really wanted to read it. But, as you awesome readers can see, it was translated!

Big Hero 6 is definitely a fun read. But don’t go into it thinking that it is going to be like the movie, because there are quite a few differences. I’m not going to delve into them too much, however, as I don’t want to spoil too much of the story for anyone who’s interested in reading it themselves. But, one difference that I will point out is that Tadashi is still alive when Hiro is in college, as opposed to the movie where Tadashi dies before Hiro goes to the college.

Anyway, the storyline is definitely interesting. Since it is different from the movie, even if you have watched the movie, you won’t really know exactly what will happen next. I mean, the basic story elements from the movie are still there, but they’re just different enough to keep things interesting. The special chapter at the end is also really cute, and helps add to the story, not much, but a little.

But, what really impressed me was the artwork. I’ve always been a fan of the manga/anime art style, and Big Hero 6 was no exception. Of course Baymax was cute, but Hiro had a whole new dimension of cute added to him. He has a sparkle in his eyes that just really adds to his character.

All in all, Big Hero 6 was definitely as good as I expected it to be, and was a very pleasant surprise to find at my bookstore. I highly recommend it to any of you awesome readers who enjoyed the movie Big Hero 6, just remember that the manga does not follow the movie. And if you haven’t watched the movie, you should still give this manga a shot. Who knows, maybe it will get you interested in the movie.

Later.

Fairy Tail Review (Spoiler Warning)

Fairy Tail is based off of the manga by the same name written by Hiro Mashima

Fairy Tail is based on a manga by the same name written by Hiro Mashima

I do not own any pictures.

Okay, so, I realized that it’s been awhile since I last updated my “Anime” page, and I decided write about Fairy Tail since it was the most recent anime I’ve watched. But, since I’ve already watched all of the English Dub episodes that are out at the moment, I decided to make it an actual post.

Anyway, Fairy Tail takes place in the fictional kingdom of Fiore and follows the adventures of a group of wizards from a guild with the same name as the anime. Guilds are places where wizards can find jobs and join other wizards to form teams. Each guild has its own emblem which members are required to have stamped on as proof of their membership. If a member chooses to leave a guild, or if they are kicked out of  it, the emblem will disappear. There are also rules that anyone leaving a guild must follow. I’m not sure if they vary from guild to guild, or if every guild has them, although it makes sense for every guild to have them. Guilds are also separated into two groups, there’s the official guilds who are recognized by the Magic Consul, and there’s the Dark Guilds which are usually full of crooks.

Now for the core characters, first off is Natsu Dragneel.

Natsu 2

Natsu is a fire dragon slayer. Which means that he not only uses fire dragon slayer magic, but he can also eat fire to regain his magic power. Unfortunately for him, Natsu suffers from severe motion sickness, just standing on something that’s moving, even if it isn’t moving very fast, makes him so sick he can barely move. Natsu tends to be a hot head, and is generally considered childish, but when he gets serious, his opponents don’t stand a chance. He is widely known as “Salamander” by the people of Fiore. Natsu was raised by the fire dragon, Igneel, until Igneel’s sudden disappearance seven years before the start of the series. After Igneel disappeared, Natsu dedicated large amounts of his time and energy to finding the dragon. And it was on one of his trips to check on a rumor he heard that he thought would lead him to Igneel that he met the next character I’m going to mention, Lucy Heartfilia.

Lucy Heartfilia

Lucy is a Celestial Wizard. She summons Celestial Spirits by opening their “Gates” with her Celestial Keys. She is in possession of seven of the twelve Gold Keys, these keys open the gates to spirits named after the twelve signs of the zodiac. She is generally a very cheery person, but also tends to be a little touchy. Lucy is also the daughter of an extremely wealthy businessman. However, after the death of her mother, she and her father never got along, resulting in her decision to run away from home. After a chance encounter with Natsu, she joined Fairy Tail, and soon after became Natsu’s partner. When her father tried to force her to return home by hiring wizards to attack Fairy Tail, she surrendered and returned home only to personally announce that Fairy Tail was her home now and, if her father tried to destroy it again, he would have to answer to her. Later, when her father’s business was sold out leaving him bankrupt and without a home, he decided to build a new business from the ground up. He also decided to try to be a better person. During this time, his relationship with Lucy improved. Unfortunately, he and Lucy didn’t have much time left together as Lucy and all of Fairy Tail’s strongest wizards disappeared suddenly during the “S” class trails. When the members returned seven years later, Lucy’s father had already died. However, her father’s love and change of character was evident, as during the seven years that she was gone, he never failed to send her a birthday present and a card each year, and he paid her rent for her while she was gone so she would have a home to return to when she finally made it back.

Anyway, time for the next character, Lucy meets him when he and Natsu get into a fight almost as soon as Natsu and Lucy arrive at Fairy Tail for Lucy to join. Guess you could say he’s known for giving Natsu the “Cold Shoulder”. Okay, that was an admittingly bad joke, let’s just move on to Gray Fullbuster.

Gray Fullbuster

Gray is an ice wizard. He uses Ice Make magic to make just about anything he can think of to use in battle. His abilities range from fairly common things such as making a hammer out of ice and completely freezing the ground to cause his opponents to slip, to more complex things such as making an exact replica of himself to trick his opponents and making a prison to trap his opponents in. He also has a bad habit of randomly taking off his shirt, usually even he isn’t aware of the fact that he is without a shirt until someone else points it out. Gray’s parents died when a monster named Deliora attacked his village. Gray was then taken in by an ice wizard by the name of Ur. Afterwards, he was trained alongside her other student Lyon Vastia. The three lived happily until news of another Deliora attack reached them. Gray decided to go fight the monster despite Ur’s warnings. It was during that battle that Ur sacrificed herself so Gray and Lyon could survive. Ur used the last of her strength to trap the monster in an Iced Shell by becoming the very ice that trapped it. For years afterward, Gray blamed himself for Ur’s death, and Lyon blamed him too. The two never saw each other for years (pretty sure it was seven years, but I don’t remember for sure), and when they finally saw each other again, it wasn’t a happy reunion. The reason Lyon was upset about Ur’s death was because his dream was to surpass his teacher, and now that she was dead, he couldn’t prove that he was better than her by winning a fight. So, he decided that the only other way to prove he was better was by reviving the monster that she had lost her life sealing away. However, when he finally frees the monster it turns out that it was already dead from being sealed in ice for so long. After that, Lyon joins an official guild, and he and Gray remain rivals, but are also now friends. The incident also made Natsu and Gray closer, although neither one of them would admit it. Our heroes weren’t out of the water after defeating Lyon, though, because the mission they had taken on which resulted in them fighting Lyon was an “S” class mission, and it was against the rules for normal ranked wizards like them to take on those types of missions. Which caused Master Makarov to send this next character to go get them and bring them back to the Fairy Tail Guild Hall. That character’s name is Erza Scarlet.

Erza Scarlet

Erza uses Requip magic. This allows her to swap out her armor and weapons whenever she wishes. Erza is known to be the fastest requiper there is, she is also considered Fairy Tail’s strongest female wizard, and as a result, the rest of the members both fear and respect her. Erza is usually a no-nonsense woman, but she tends to be a tad ridiculous at times. Once she went a little overboard defeating a gang of thieves because they ruined her first ever picnic during an important mission. Part of Erza’s inner strength comes from her harsh past. She, along with a lot of other people, were capture by a dark guild and forced to make a tower which they planned to use to somehow bring back an evil wizard named Zeref, whom was believed dead but was later revealed to be alive (and who honest to goodness looks like a black-haired version of Kagamine Len from Vocaloid without a ponytail). During this time, Erza makes friends whom she will cherish for years to come. The one she feels the most attachment to is a young boy named Jellal Fernandes. It was Jellal who gave Erza her last name after she told him that she didn’t know what her last name was. He suggested Scarlet so he would always be able to remember her name by her hair. After Erza is tortured by the guards because she stood up for herself and everyone else, Jellal came to her rescue only to be captured and tortured himself. This changed Jellal drastically, he was no longer the kind and gentle boy that everyone once knew. After all the captives rebelled and defeated the dark guild, Jellal betrayed everyone and made it seem like Erza was the betrayer. After sending Erza away with strict commands to never return, Jellal destroyed the rest of the boats ensuring that the rest of the prisoners couldn’t escape. He then proceeded to force the remaining prisoners to continue building the tower, only this time he tricked them into thinking that that was what they wanted to do because it would allow them to reach heaven. Because of this claim, the tower became known as the Tower of Heaven. Years later, Jellal sent the rest of Erza’s old friends to capture her and bring her to the tower to be used as a sacrifice to activate the tower. It was then that Jellal’s betrayal became known to the other prisoners. Luckily, Natsu, Gray, Lucy, and Juvia (a water wizard of Fairy Tail) came to Erza’s rescue. They managed to stop Jellal, but unfortunately, the battle caused one of Erza’s old friends to lose his life in order to save Erza’s.

Now, about Juvia, she joined Fairy Tail after a battle with another guild known as Phantom Lord, and she wasn’t the only new member to join Fairy Tail after that battle. The next character also joined after the battle, although he was a little more reluctant than Juvia. His name is Gajeel Redfox.

Gajeel Redfox

Gajeel is an Iron Dragon Slayer. He can transform his body into iron and use it as a weapon. For example, he usually transforms his arm into a sword that has extra, smaller blades that spin around like the blades on a chainsaw. Similar to Natsu, Gajeel can restore his magic power by eating iron. Also like Natsu, Gajeel’s dragon disappeared seven years before the start of the series, it also disappeared on the same day as Natsu’s dragon. Gajeel is generally a ruff-and-tumble kind of guy, and, can sometimes come off as rude. Although Gajeel was once an enemy of Fairy Tail, he is now a loyal member who would do almost anything for his guild. He served as a double agent at one time at the request of Makarov, and gave Fairy Tail valuable information on a guild whose single purpose was to destroy Fairy Tail. This guild is known as Raven Tail. Raven Tail was started by Makarov’s son after he was kicked out of Fairy Tail for trying to bring harm to the other members of the guild. While Gajeel doesn’t appear to have had this weakness when he was first introduced, during the Grand Magic Games, it is revealed that he also suffers from severe motion sickness like Natsu. It is also revealed that this is common among strong dragon slayers as the White Dragon Slayer Sting and the Shadow Dragon Slayer Rogue also suffer from severe motion sickness. The only dragon slayer who doesn’t appear to have this weakness is also the next character, Wendy Marvell.

Wendy Marvell

Wendy is a Sky Dragon Slayer. She specializes in support magic, and usually isn’t much of a fighter, but she can still hold her own in a battle. Wendy is also a healer, and possesses a magic that can temporarily cure motion sickness, but the more she uses it on someone the less effective it is, much to Natsu’s dismay. Wendy is usually cheerful, but has a tendency to be a little hard on herself. Wendy was very young when her dragon disappeared at the same time as Natsu’s and Gajeel’s. Alone, scared and crying, Wendy soon runs into Mystogan, Jellal’s look-alike from an alternate dimension known as Edolas. Mystogan had only recently arrived in Earth Land (the world of Fairy Tail) and was unaware that he had a counterpart in the world, and introduced himself as Jellal to Wendy, as that was his real name. Once he found out that everyone in Edolas has a counterpart in Earth Land, he changed his name to Mystogan, however, he had already left Wendy by then. Wendy was left in a deserted village that was home to one old man who possessed illusion magic, which he used to make the village full of people and to make members for a guild called Cait Shelter so Wendy wouldn’t feel alone. He never told Wendy that everyone was an illusion, so she grew up thinking that they were all real people. When all of the major guilds in Fiore joined forces to defeat a dark guild before they destroyed all of Fiore, Wendy was sent to be the representative of Cait Shelter as she was the only real member besides the master of the guild. During the fight against the dark guild, Jellal resurfaced. He didn’t remember anyone from Fairy Tail, however, as he had lost his memory after his battle against our heroes. He still remembered Erza’s name, but that was all he remembered. He didn’t remember anything about what he had done. Wendy was excited to see him, however, because she thought he was the same Jellal that had saved her all those years ago. It wasn’t until after the dark guild had been defeated and Wendy found out Cait Shelter wasn’t really a guild and had joined Fairy Tail that she found out it was actually Mystogan that had saved her when she was a young girl.

Alright, now that I’ve told you about all of the Dragon Slayers, it time for me to tell you about their Exceed partners. There’s Natsu’s partner, Happy, Wendy’s partner, Carla, and Gajeel’s partner Pantherlily (Who is usually simply referred to as Lily).

Happy Carla           Panther Lily

Like all Exceeds, these three have the capability to grow wings and fly. Despite their small appearance they can each carry their dragon slayer with ease, as well as other members of Fairy Tail. Lily also has the ability to make himself bigger and stronger by regaining his original appearance that he had in Edolas. Like all Exceeds, all three of them are originally from Edolas, however Happy and Carla were sent to Earth Land when they were still in their eggs, it was then that they met Natsu and Wendy. Upon each of them meeting their dragon slayer, they have always been at the slayers side, ready to help whenever they can.

And that’s all of the core characters. Overall Fairy Tail is an amazing anime, although that may vary with personal opinion. Fairy Tail is just one of those animes where you either like it or you don’t. There is a lot of battles and action in the series, so if you’re a fan of Dragon Ball you’ll probably like Fairy Tail. But, even if you don’t like Dragon Ball, I would still suggest giving Fairy Tail a shot. Personally, I’ve never watched Dragon Ball (but I know enough about it to know that it’s mostly fighting), and I still thoroughly enjoyed Fairy Tail. I’ve read that the English Dub is still ongoing, but it would also appear that there haven’t been any new episodes in a while, as I’ve seen comments from people asking when Fairy Tail is going to resume. Do any of you awesome readers know if it’s still being dubbed, or did Funimation lose the rights? Also, if any of you awesome readers have a question, or would like to know more about a character, feel free to ask in the comments section. And here’s a question for you awesome readers, do you like my reviews? Would you like to see more of them, or would you prefer if I didn’t do reviews? And finally, any tips on how to make my reviews better would be much appreciated as I am still new at making reviews.

Later.