Anime and Manga Update
I’m a big fan of anime and manga and, if you let me, I would never shut up about it. However, it’s sometimes better to be brief. Instead of talking excessively of how great anime and manga is, I’ll just get to the point.
Firstly, I have two recommendations for new anime that are currently airing.
1) “Mayoiga” (English: “The Lost Village.” 12 episodes)
This is an intriguing mystery anime with a lot of characters that you can’t wait to seedie… and they probably will. The screenwriter is the same one behind “AnoHana”, “Toradora” and other great works. Plus, there is almost no evidence of an absolute original source material (i.e. a manga/light novel), meaning that the trolls and spoilers will stay in their caves.
2) “Koutetsujou no Kabaneri” (English: “Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress.” 12 episodes)
Another anime original, this could be the love child of “Attack on Titan,” “High-school ofthe Dead,” “Princess Mononoke” and… “Rail Wars”…? The director is Tetsurou Araki, meaning it’s basically anime nobility. I admit it’s too similar to some of Araki’s more popular (and largely aforementioned) works to be called smashingly original, yet the show has wicked potential, and could be one of the best ones this year if they don’t screw it up.
In a similar vein, I’ll just recommend a few manga series that I enjoy(ed), and maybe expose people to something new.
My first recommendation is “Psyren” (2007; 16 volumes). “Psyren” is an underappreciated shounen, horror, supernatural, mystery, romance, adventure series with an engaging plot, characters you’ll like, and a main character who isn’t full of crap.
I also recommend “Mahou Tsukai No Yome” (English: “The Ancient Magus Bride.” 2014; 5 Japanese volumes; 3 English volumes), a supernatural/romance shoujo series (directed at girls/young women). The manga is stuck somewhere between old shoujo , where everybody messed with everybody else’s mind and occasionally tried to kill each other, and modern shoujo, where everything is so innocent and sweet you run the risk of becoming diabetic.
The series is getting a home video release in summer for those who prefer anime.
Finally, I recommend “Nana to Kaoru” (2008; 16 volumes). I admit I’ve only read some parts of this manga(*wink wink*) as I’m not really into… what Nana and Kaoru are into. However, I have had a largely enjoyable time with this manga (*grins). The title characters have doubts and problems that could belong to any one of us and are really endearing. I left out the genres because I’m entertained by the idea of you finding out for yourself.
Finally, some anime-related news. Easily the best thing I’ve seen so far (outside the Summer 2016 anime line-up, of course) is the fact that “Ghost In The Shell” is getting an actual live action release. AND that they’ve started filming. AND that the release date has been set, meaning… this is happening!
My hopes for the movie are that they stick to the original material but explore a different story arc than the original movies and the various series; that they tone it down enough that a wider audience can understand the plot but not so much so that you leave the theatre dumber than you entered; and that they keep the atmosphere mature and not make it family-friendly.
I have already seen controversy around Hollywood whitewashing the cast. However, I find that no different from Japan Asian-washing the “Attack on Titan” movie. I honestly don’t mind if they use big-name actors that will deliver a performance and rake in the bucks. What I would mind is if they change characters’ names and backstories to fit their new lighter complexions. For a series with such complicated characters as GITS, that would be disrespectful to the original story and ensure that the movie shares only the name with the original and nothing else beneath (if you’ll pardon the pun) the skin.
Leiso Edwards is a first-year Matsuyama ALT from Jamaica. She doesn’t have a blog, but if she did she would write yaoi doujinshi…just because.