Tag Archives: Shoujo Ai

Yuri Kuma Arashi Review

Yuri Kuma Arashi69203l

completed 2015

Type: TV
Episodes: 12/12
Aired: Jan, 2015 to Mar, 2015
Producers: Frontier Works, FUNimation Entertainment, Media Factory, Mainichi Broadcasting, Movic, Gentosha Comics
Studios: Silver Link

Yuri Kuma Arashi was an original anime project written by  Kunihiko Ikuhara, though the manga written for it was published before the anime was released.

In the beginning we hated you so

In the beginning we must have loved you to

And so we wanted to become true friends with you. To cross the wall

I’m not really sure how I am meant to feel about this anime. I guess a silver? I’m not likely to forget the plot and I think I enjoyed it. It’s very surreal. Like a strange cross between xxxholic and utena. With added Yuri, cannibalism and less guys.  This is a story is about the love and bonds we share and how the world likes to destroy those bounds. I called it cannibalism however its bears eating humans, admittedly disguised as humans but still the same.kuma 3

We don’t really see any blood, but this anime is definitely NSFW. Containing a lot of suggestive scenes. Even in the opening there are a few moments of ummmm. Toe biting? Yuri in genre is not a genre I enjoy, and it was only because of my weekly challenge that I watched this. That and the artwork is not moe and has decent proportions. Unlike most things Silver link makes – thank god! I do have a limit with ecchi stuff and the appearance of the characters. Not to stay the artwork is pretty. Its very shoujo, almost CLAMP like. Big round eyes and long legs and bodies. kuma 2The story is one with twists and deep symbolic meanings. This story is laced with symbolism and if you think this anime is as simple of bears wanting to eat humans, you would be wrong. If anything the idea of an ‘invisible storm’ is proof of this. Those who don’t fit in and conform to society’s ideas are excluded from the herd and left to be eaten by the bears. Not literally from the school, but rather from the herd’s events etc. Sound familiar? Just think of your own friends who are LGBT or simply not the standard model, how much they have to face from people. Society is not forgiving to those who stick out.

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Love is more times than not in anime over sexualised. It’s refreshing to see any anime about love being more true and honest. Kureha is in love with Sumika. Even after she dies, she is determined to not spoilt that love, or friendship. Declaring for a while afterwards that she doesn’t want to make any more friends. Sumika is her only friend. Not that it doesn’t stop the others from trying. The storm taking more than one form once someone has been removed.

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The bears, for reason of their own, wish to protect Kureha. Because one loves her due to the kindness showed to her once she was young. Refusing to give up on love. Eating girls who become a threat to Kureha, Jealousy. Love. Determination. Also lost chances. This anime covers the complexness which is love while keeping it sweet and innocent. For the most. But not only love itself but the fight people have to face against society’s view of their love. How people choose to get in the way of love. Because they don’t agree with it, or because they want it themselves.

Basically, this anime is deep. Very deep. With hidden means and a fantastic story line. Don’t be put off my the fact it is yuri or the fact it is surreal. It is a gem in the dust which likely deserved more attention that it got.

‘Is your love true?”

“Will you eat humans, or will you become invisible?”

So many deep references I’m not going to even begin because you could write papers on this anime!

For people who enjoyed this, I would recommend Utena. I did some researching and it turns out they are both directed by Kunihiko Ikuhara which explains the similar feelings between the two.

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Shoujo Kakumei Utena Review

Shoujo Kakumei Utena (Revolutionary Girl Utena)  300full 

Watched 2010 roughly

Type: TV
Completed Episodes: 39/39
Aired: Apr, 1997 to Dec, 1997
Producers: J.C.Staff, TV Tokyo, Right Stuf, Central Park Media
Shoujo Kakumei Utena is a manga adaptation originally by a Chiho Saito.

Shoujo Kakumei Utena is a likely one of the earliest examples of a fandom Yuri pairing which was almost canon because of how often it was hinted at.

Shoujo Kakumei Utena was an very unique anime. Even now with its dated animation techniques, Utena is a beautiful work of art. Everything about it unique and different. The colours are bright and the backgrounds well designed. Plus this anime is not all about looks either. It contained some pretty deep theme. Including many topics which are seeming now taboo in anime outside of their genres.

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Notably gender. While never specially said, it could be argued that our leading lady is gender-fluid. Taking the ‘male role’ of the series and having a relationship with the ‘female’ lead. Unlike say Akuma no Riddle where the ‘male’ lead as short hair and very tomboyish vibe, Utena still retains her long pink hair and their are times where she is undeniably female.

So what has lead Utena to play the male role? Utena was once a young girl (princess) who was saved by a handsome prince. The prince that save her, gave her a ring in promises that he may one day return. An engagement ring perhaps? Most girls would eagerly await the return of their prince. Utena on the other hand was so taken by the prince, she wished to become a prince herself.

We met the adult Utena as she is arguing with his second about the school rules towards uniform. To be exact, there is no rule saying a girl can not wear the boys uniform. And so she wears it proudly. Excellent at sports too, all the girls love her and call her the prince of the school.

[large][AnimePaper]scans_Shoujo-Kakumei-Utena_nat(0_78)__THISRES__251775One day Utena protects girl from being bullied and somehow ends up in a duel over the right to control the girl. She has stumbled into a game where the player, all with some very serious issues and problems, duel over the hand of the Rose Bride. The duelest fight with swords drawn from their own hearts, or in the case of the current owner, the Rose Bride’s heart. To do this, and to show you are participating in the game, the player wear rose rings. Remember that ring the Prince gave Utena? That is one of the rings. The winner of the game will have the power to revolutionize the world. A phrase repeated often in the anime but even by the end the full understanding of the term is vague at best. Certainly the Rose Bride’s power can cause a drastic change.

The Rose bride herself is Anthy Himemiya. A girl who has very much a ‘doormat’ nature. She almost never stand up for herself. Her entire purpose in life and this anime is to be a pawn. Once Utena wins the rights to her, Utena protects her from people who would otherwise abuse or insult her. Those people use abuse her partly because they don’t think she as the ability to care about how people are treating her? Messed up but considering how obedient she is to other people and how she lets people treat her as a servant, especially her current Victor, whose every wishes she must cater to according to herself, its not surprising people have given up on treating her like human. A problem Utena tries to fix, and indeed Anthy is considerably warmer to Utena than other people due to this.

As previously stated there are some pretty dark and deep themes in this anime. Utena fights against a lot of prejudice and just plain wrong ideology in order to free Anthy from her curse.  His animes unusual because it takes a typical shoujo trait and encourages girls to think for themselves and become who they want to be, not what is expected of them.

So this platinum for me as I’ve never watched another anime just quite like it.

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Akuma No Riddle Review

Akuma no Riddle (Riddle Story of the Devil)60479l
Watched 2015
Type: TV
Completed Episodes: 12/12
Aired: Apr, 2014 to Jun, 2014

Producers: Diomedea, FUNimation Entertainment, Mainichi Broadcasting,Pony Canyon, DAX Production

Akuma no Riddle is a manga adaptation written by Yun Kōga and drawn by Sunao Minakata

This anime was not bad per-say, I just didn’t really enjoy it. Akuma no Riddle is an anime which is a battle royale type anime. One more in a long line of similar animes which have been popular over the last few years. This one which the twist of having Yuri elements. Oh and no one actually dies in this one. So what is the situation this time?

Met our leading lady, Haru Ichinose. (The girl to the right in the picture below) Haru is a cheerful bubbly girl who is covered in scars. She is also the target. Haru has spent her entire life being targeted by assassins, which has led to the death of her mum, dad and two brothers. Why? Why has she been targeted all her life? We are not told at first, as the anime unravels we slowly learn the truth behind why people are trying to kill her so much. Her wish is to survive the class and be able to live a normal life. Haru starts high school and is placed in the ‘Black’ class. A class which is made up of thirteen assassins and one Haru. All thirteen assassins are trying to kill Haru in order to gain one wish. All of them have their own motivation for joining the class, and their own styles of killing. Except one of the assassins has a change of heart.news_FD9n1W2iuOesXvT

Enter Tokaku Akuma. (The girl in the middle) Tokaku is from a legendary class of assassins and is highly trained. Except she has never actually killed anyone more. Entranced by Haru’s cheerfulness, and determination to survive Tokaku decided to try to protect Haru from the rest of their classmates. The result? A fairly standard, school scenary followed by assassination attempt and recuse format anime. The majority of the episodes are guessable and to be honest I only finished this anime because I had nothing else to do. Otherwise I would have quit. I didn’t care about the yuri themes, nor the lame fight scenes. Its just that, despite most having fairly dark and decent background stories, most of the characters were simply quite bland to me.

The only one who develops over more than one episode is Tokaku. TO be fair that is partly because after they have failed, they get kicked out the class. Which sort of puts a downer on the idea of character development. Which is a shame because it meant of the vast majority of the characters we met, we learn there life story and see their assassination attempt in one short episode and don’t see them again until the epilogue. It.It just seems lazy to me. I get the anime is supposed to be Haru x Tokaku centric, but even their interactions are fairly standard and uninteresting until the last few episodes when the truth about the Black class and Haru is revealed.

Its fine. Its nothing special and I personally didn’t enjoy it all that much. The ending was particular bad as well. It just didn’t make sense and the reason was so wishy washy it was terrible. The last few episodes were mildly more interesting and I was hoping for a good ending. Its a sweet happy ending, but make no real sense. So bronze.

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