Re: Hamatora: Episode 11 – “End of Yokohama”

Re: Hamatora is the second season of the Hamatora television anime series. This season begins three months after the end of the first season, and the Hamatora detective agency is still taking on cases that come their way.

Episode 11 ends up providing backstory for Boss, the owner of Café Nowhere. It turns out that he was one of the scientists working under Moral and Doktor when Hajime’s Nihilist Minimum was activated the first time. Boss ends up saving Hajime’s life when he declares that he’ll be her guardian and watch over her when Doktor wants to kill her for being too dangerous. We also see the beginnings for Café Nowhere. Koneko just appears at the time when Boss opens the café; I just have to assume that he found her somewhere and brought her in to help him and Hajime with the business.

Ishigami and the Freemums launch their plan, in which they demand during a broadcast that Yokohama becomes a special district restricted to Minimum Holders; if not, they have a way of killing some people at a time until their demand is met. Later, Ishigami takes on Doktor when he tries arguing against giving in to the Freemums demands.

But the Freemums are in for a surprise when Art reveals that he was simply using them. I was basically right when I guessed in my writeup for Episode 10 that Art was simply using the Freemums to gather as many Minimum Holders together as possible and using Hajime’s Nihilist Minimum to get rid of Minimum abilities.

This episode ended up being rather intense. And with only one episode left, I’m very curious to see how this story is resolved. At this point, it appears that Nice is dead; however, he were deceived once before, so the writers could be pulling a similar stunt here. But in addition to that, it appears that Hajime’s Nihilist Minimum has been taking away Minimum Holders’ powers, including everyone associated with Hamatora. The situation looks rather bleak and hopeless at the end of Episode 11, so I’m very curious to know how this story can be resolved in one episode. Hopefully we won’t see any reliance on a “deus ex machina” ending or something really bizarre happening in order to reverse what happened at the end of this episode.

Captain Earth: Episode 24 – “Auberon”

Captain Earth focuses on Daichi Manatsu, who stumbles into a secret organization when he returns to Tanegashima after being gone for several years. He had made friends with a boy named Teppei when he was younger, but had no idea that Teppei was part of this organization. It turns out that Daichi’s father, who died when he was younger, also had ties to this organization. Near the end of the first episode, he makes it into the organization’s headquarters, and is given a gun by a scientist named Peter Westvillage, which allows him to pilot a mecha known as the Earth Engine. As the series progresses, Daichi and Teppei, along with Hana and Akari, become a team known as the Midsummer’s Knights.

Episode 24 opens with the Entangle Link being activated, but Daichi and the others find they didn’t arrive at Uranus as they had expected. Instead, they discover they’re in orbit around Saturn. Suddenly, Bugbear from the Kiltgang appears and Daichi goes after him. During the fight, we discover through what Bugbear says that the Kiltgang really had been in his dream back in Episode 23. So I guess I was a little wrong about that dream; it wasn’t an internal struggle Daichi was going through, he had the Kiltgang trying to control him.

But just as it looks like Bugbear’s going to defeat Daichi, Teppei appears in the Booster as it warps in between Daichi and Bugbear, and the Booster shoots off a blast that appears to destroy Bugbear’s Ego Block. Once this is done, Hana says she’s ready to try the Entangle Link again.

With their second attempt, the Midsummer’s Knights appear at Uranus and manage to board the Kivotos. But when they reach the core and find the cocoon, they find the Kiltgang are waiting for them. Also, Siren is able to bring back Bugbear’s Ego Block and he returns to the battle. It’s also revealed that Puck is in the cocoon, but what Puck does surprises both the Midsummer’s Knights and the Kiltgang…

I knew that Puck was using everybody he came in contact with, including the Kiltgang, but I hadn’t realized just how evil Puck truly is! But when he destroys the Ego Blocks for a couple of the Kiltgang and refers them as his tools, he showed just how little regard he has for anyone. One of the Kiltgang he destroyed was Liban, who basically had done squat after Amarok and Malkin retrieved them; however, I was surprised to see that Zimbalt was the other one. But this still begs the question: why were there so many Kiltgang introduced if so few were truly ever utilized in the series? When Liban disappeared, I just kind of shrugged and didn’t care since we saw so little of that character to begin with. But Zimbalt’s destruction actually had an impact on me, since he was the Planetary Gear who did the most in the series after Amarok and Malkin.

But things are looking rather bleak for the Midsummer’s Knights at the end of Episode 24. I have a hard time believing there could be any kind of “happily ever after” at the end of Episode 25, because at this point, there would have to be a tremendous turn around in what’s going on. Considering how much power Puck seems to have over the situation, I don’t see that as being very likely. It’s going to be interesting to see how Captain Earth ultimately comes to an end.

English Dub Cast for Sunday Without God

Sentai Filmworks has announced the English dub cast for the Sunday Without God television anime series:

  • Caitlyn French is Ai
  • Andrew Love is Hampnie Hambart
  • John Swasey is Yuto and Mask Dealer
  • Shelley Calene-Black is Anna and Pox
  • Kyle Colby Jones is Yoki
  • Luke Patterson is Fake Daddy
  • Sean McManus is Six-Headed Beast
  • David Matranga is Yuri Sakama Dmitrievich
  • Genevieve Simmons is Scar
  • Allison Sumrall is Hana
  • Kalob Martinez is Hiko
  • Jay Hickman is Wreck
  • John Johnston is Lion
  • Kara Greenberg is Kera and Volrath Fahren
  • Clint Bickham is Fancy Performer and Hardy
  • Tyler Galindo is Kiriko Zubreska
  • Emily Neves is Ulla Eulesse Hecmatica
  • Joanne Bonasso is Diva
  • Mike Yager is Alice Color
  • Luci Christian is Dee Ensy Stratmitos
  • Jad Saxton is Tanya Swedgewood
  • Meg McDonald is Mimita Gedenburg and Meme Gedenburg
  • Shannon Emerick is Gigi
  • Sarah Salimi is Rune Sagittarius
  • Angela Foster is Mageta
  • Brittany Deans is Jiji
  • John Johnston is Quentin
  • Carli Mosier is Mu

The dub is directed by Kyle Jones.

Anime Book Review: The Science of Anime: Mecha-Noids and AI-Super-Bots

The Science of Anime: Mecha-Noids and AI-Super-Bots is a book written by Lois H. Gersh and Robert Weinberg, and it was published in 2005. The book contains an introduction, nine chapters, notes, a bibliography, and acknowledgments.

The first chapter discusses the origins of anime. During the chapter, the authors talk about the birth of comics and anime, Osamu Tezuka, and the history of anime from the beginning to current time. This is pretty much the standard information that a reader can find in other books concerning anime.

The second chapter delves into mecha, and it covers giant robots, the history and evolution of mecha in anime, some of the shows that use mecha, as well as some of the other elements associated with mecha. Since this is a book about the “science of anime,” having a mecha-specific chapter makes sense.

Chapter three goes into artificial intelligence, talking about the shows and the science of artificial intelligence. The fourth chapter goes into colonies in space, and it focuses very heavily on the Gundam universe. The chapter also delves into the science and theories surrounding space colonies.

Chapter five talks about cyberpunk and cyber-terrorism. The sixth chapter talks about evolution and how it is featured in anime; it focuses heavily on Neon Genesis Evangelion and Akira, and then goes into a discussion of evolution and creationism. This is then followed by a discussion about Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind and Gaia theory.

Chapter seven goes into a discussion about parallel universes, and it goes into an in-depth analysis of the science that goes into parallel universes. The eighth chapter talks about virtual reality; it focuses on .hack//SIGN, and talks about some of the uses for virtual reality in the real world. The final chapter discusses how the science in anime is plausible but illogical.

The concept behind The Science of Anime is an interesting one, but the execution isn’t quite what I was anticipating. The authors obviously have a lot of scientific knowledge, but unfortunately, they really didn’t seem to put much effort into trying to write about the science in “layman’s terms” to make the information more accessible for readers who may not have the same level of knowledge as the authors do.

One of the best examples of this issue appears in the chapter about the space colonies. In one section of the chapter, the authors go into great detail about the math involved, and even break down the math equations and the steps of the equations. While someone with a genuine interest in math and science might find this interesting, I found it to be rather dry reading.

The Science of Anime: Mecha-Noids and AI-Super-Bots isn’t a bad book, but it’s not a book I can recommend to be in a basic reference library of an anime fan. Personally, I think you would have to have a genuine interest in science in order to get the most out of this book.

I wrote this review after reading a copy of The Science of Anime: Mecha-Noids and AI-Super-Bots that I checked out through the King County Library System.

Two New Cast Members Announced for Sokyu no Fafner: Dead Aggressor: Exodus

The official website for the forthcoming Sokyu no Fafner: Dead Aggressor: Exodus announced two new additional cast members:

  • Megumi Han is Aishuwaria Fein
  • Masakazu Morita is Billy Morgan

The anime is scheduled to debut on Japanese television in January 2015. A preview screening of the series will be held at the Maihama Amphitheater in December 2014.

Aldnoah.Zero: Episode 11 – “Wind, Snow and Stars”

Aldnoah.Zero is an anime series set on an alternate version of Earth, where an ancient alien hypergate was discovered on the surface of the moon. Humanity used this technology and began migrating to Mars to settle the planet. When the settlers discovered more advanced technology, they founded the Vers Empire; this new empire claimed the planet and the technology for themselves. The Vers Empire declared war on Earth. During a battle that took place on the moon’s surface in 1999, the hypergate exploded and shattered the moon; the moon’s debris created a belt around the Earth.

The series begins in 2014, which is 15 years after Heavens Fall. On Earth (specifically in Shin-awara, Japan), we meet a high school student named Nao Inaho and his sister, Yuki Kaizuka. Yuki is a Warrant Officer in the Military Personnel of the Earth Alliance. Yuki helps instruct at the high school, because military training is part of their high school experience. She works alongside Koichiro Marito, a lieutenant who also teaches at the school. Marito appears to be a bit of a heavy drinker, and believes that the kids are being lied to about things; he was in the military 15 years earlier, and saw things that have been hushed up by the top brass.

Episode 11 sees Saazbaum launch a direct attack on United Earth HQ. Saazbaum and his men break into the headquarters in the Kataphrakts and start wreaking havoc. His troops are ordered to find Princess Asseylum and shoot her on sight.

Asseylum contacts Inaho and tells him that she has the ability to shut off Saazbaum’s Aldnoah drive since she’s from the Vers emperor’s bloodline. Inaho says he’ll escort Asseylum to the enemy’s Landing Castle, but Yuki argues with him. As expected, Inaho uses his emotionless logic to argue his position; and after Asseylum agrees with his plan, Yuki agrees to forward it to the captain.

Later, we see Asseylum being driven by her assistant in a jeep to get to the Deucalion, but Saazbaum’s men see her and begin shooting at the jeep. A Kataphrakt piloted by Rayet appears and protects the princess so she can get on board the ship. I’m sorry, but I have a very hard time believing that Rayet would help out the princess like this. Just two episodes ago, Rayet tried to strangle Asseylum and kill her; this just doesn’t work for me, because I can’t see Rayet having such a rapid change of heart. I don’t think sitting in that cell suddenly made he realize that Asseylum is someone she should be helping. This just felt forced to me.

As the episode is ending, a plan Inaho came up with launches; unfortunately, something unforeseen happens that has the potential to derail his plan…

And Slaine only makes a couple of quick token appearances in Episode 11, and all we see is that he’s concerned about Princess Asseylum. At this point, it appears that while he doesn’t seem to be fighting with Saazbaum’s forces, he also doesn’t seem to be joining up with the Terrans, either.

In the end, not a whole lot happens in Episode 11. Yes, the action really picks up after the slower pace of the past couple of episodes, but all this action is essentially just setting the series up for the final battle, which will be taking place during Episode 12.

It’ll be interesting to see how Episode 12 brings the story to an end, and to see whether or not these last couple of episodes will be able to improve my opinion of this series or not.