what’s the deal with heaven’s feel?

Heaven's Feel poster

Fate is one of my favorite franchises. It’s solid action on top of hardcore conspiracy and worldbuilding on an epic scale. It also includes a few story themes that a lot of people can identify with: fighting to protect something or gain something, striving to remain true to oneself, dealing with past regrets and fear of the future.

I was first exposed to Fate/stay night through the original anime series produced by Studio DEEN in 2006. In hindsight, it was a very poor adaptation compared to the original work and subsequent adaptations. However, it still was a good portrayal of the basic storyline:

Regular (?) teen Emiya Shirou accidentally stumbles on a secret death contest, the Grail War, where magically adept Masters control heroic, historical incarnations, Servants, in order to obtain the Holy Grail and have a wish granted. Shirou himself somehow ends up becoming the 7th Master and summoning his own Servant, and he’s forced to participate in the war just to stay alive. As the war progresses, powerful secrets and disturbing revelations come out, forcing Shirou’s hand in order to protect what’s most dear to him.

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manga delivery!

jan20-2017

Got a couple packages while I was in Houston for work!

What’s new with me… I finished all the light novels for series I was actively waiting on new books, so I’ve finally started wading through the Index novels. I actually read a bunch of them scanlated a number of years back, but it’s been long enough that I don’t really remember the specifics of the novels (as opposed to the anime), so it’s been fun to read them again and rediscover what was left out of the anime.

My mobile games these days are (still) Granblue Fantasy, and I’ve also been getting into Final Fantasy Brave Exvius, though that’s mostly because I randomly roll a bunch of good characters in the summon – Lightning, Luneth, and Noctis, who are like the top 3 attackers in the game haha. I still keep up with Fate/Grand Order, but don’t really play it at all, just when there are interesting events going on.

Agents of SHIELD came back on last week and the current storyline is pretty good, though not as good as Ghost Rider from the first half. Definitely hoping Brett Dalton comes back in some capacity – sucks to get rid of him, he was a really good villain. The DC/CW shows start up this coming week, and we’ve gotten some news about the Supergirl/Flash musical crossover! Apparently the villain really will be the Music Meister from the cartoon, but no word on whether Neil Patrick Harris will be playing him… fingers crossed!

december 2016 haul

December 2016 new arrivals

I’d been a bit remiss in keeping up with my manga and LNs, so my package (that actually arrived on Tuesday but I’ve been in Houston all week) was a biggun.

This is a bit too much to comment on individually (read: I’m too lazy to), so I’m just going to point out a few.

On the LN side, Isolator 3 and SAO:Progressive 4 are both high on my list. Isolator has been a very interesting series so far; you can definitely feel that Reki has structured the world much more thoughtfully than SAO and AW, so I’m excited to see where it goes next. Progressive 3 was a real slog, but 1 and 2 were both excellent, so I’m hoping 4 returns to form. Sword Oratoria is a spinoff of the main DanMachi series starring Aiz, which should be a fun read as well.

Among the manga, most of it is just collecting more of what has come before. Re:Monster is a really amusing diary-type series about a guy (with some ridiculous backstory that has mostly nothing to do with the main story) who is reborn into a RPG-like world, but as a goblin. It’s pretty funny, but also just very thoroughly done, which makes it interesting to read.

The Overlord manga adaptation follows the LN pretty close, but I really just like the art. Last, there’s My Girlfriend is a T-Rex, which is just a 4-koma comedy about a world where the author asked “what if dinosaurs existed today as anthropomorphic half-humans with all the habits and mannerisms of dinosaurs?!” It’s pretty great, so I couldn’t not get it :)

i am lazy: confirmed

So yeah, about that PAX post… eh, I got lazy and didn’t find a time when I felt like sitting down to write about it. So I didn’t :X I might just post all the pictures at some point, but I didn’t really have much to talk about on it, so I decided not to do a post.

Anyway, here are new light novels from September!

sep16_lns

First there’s the next volume of Accel World, which is a series in the pile of I’m Going To Read It Eventually, But Not Right Now, And It’s Been X Years Since I Made That Declaration. Other series in the pile: Spice & Wolf, Index, Sword Art Online, Durarara, Baccano! This pile also includes 95% of the video games I’ve bought in the last 8ish years, lol. The light novels are well past the anime material, though, and Accel World is a lot more exciting than the other books in my pile, so I might end up getting to it sooner rather than later.

To the right we have the fourth Strike the Blood novel, the Labyrinth of the Blue Witch. If I remember correctly, this is the last full arc that was animated, since I believe the final anime arc was a short story or side story? I’m not caught up on StB regardless, so I’ll get to it when I get to it.

The meat of this package is definitely Overlord volume 2. Covering the Dark Warrior arc, 2 of 3 from the anime, I’ve already started reading it due to how good the first book was. The anime did a pretty good job with the adaptation, but what’s definitely missing is all the internal monologuing that Ainz does as he struggles to act as a proper dark lord while aware that this new world is changing him and that he constantly has to be an actor. I’m eager to see how his perspective changes as the story progresses, and how this gives insight into events I’ve already seen from the outside.

new arrivals, and pax!

So over the last couple weeks, I got a few packages but neglected to post pictures. That shall be rectified right now, with the additional promise of a follow up post about PAX West!

french_manga_aug16

First off, my mom was in Europe visiting her family and she was able to stop by some bookstores (FNAC etc.) and pick up random manga. I actually have yet to sit down and read the ones I got last summer, so these will just be added to the piles haha. I am definitely happy to be able to get them in a language I can read, though!

yenpress_aug16

Here’s August’s Yen Press releases. Joining the collection are Baccano! volume 2, Index volume 8, and Sword Art Online volume 8. These are series I’m not actively reading yet, but I do know that Index 8 covers the Remnant arc from season 2 of the anime, and SAO 8 is a collection of short stories, including the murder-mystery from season 1 of the anime and the Calibur mini-arc, as well as a story that wasn’t animated if I gleaned enough information from skimming it. Trinity Seven just continues the story where it left off, ending with a nice one-two sequence where we see a couple timely arrivals.

Nozaki 4 is nearing the end of the animated strips, but also includes some strips that were left out of the anime adaptation, probably for time/consistency. These strips introduce Nozaki’s brother, with some flashbacks featuring his mother and father. I would assume that volume 5 will start delving into material for the entire cast that hasn’t been animated yet.

Hataraku Maou-sama 5 I finished on the plane from my new project in Memphis to Seattle. It felt rather similar in overall plot structure to the last volume, where the cast is doing some random, mundane activity, and somehow it relates to the baddy’s plans. As usual, the star of the novel is in the slice of life and just bouncing characters off one another. Every characters’ relationships in the main cast get touched on and change or grow, with a couple characters getting some upgraded scenarios in the story which will hopefully mean that treatment will continue into future volumes. The villain this time was kind of weird, with his objectives being less menacing than the newfound knowledge we obtained of one of the forces working against our protagonists. I’m looking forward to the next volume!

Finally, we’ve got DanMachi 6, the first entire volume in English to surpass the anime! I’ve only gotten a short way into it, but it definitely appears to share a common theme with a multitude of Korean manhwa, mainly the topic of bullying, or abuse of power. This is definitely something that came up in previous DanMachi novels, but I think this is the first time it’s the main plot rather than a subplot. I feel like power abuse plots are somewhat low-hanging fruit as far as character development goes, because most readers will readily side with the party being bullied and condemn the party doing the bullying, but we’ll see how Omori handles it.

opm_sep16

Last, here’s a package I just picked up today, from the VIZ sale that was on RightStuf a couple weeks ago. I’m taking the plunge into the One Punch Man world! And just in time for volume 8, which appears to be material beyond the anime! Along with that, I got the new volumes for D-FRAG and Monster Musume as well.

Anyway, stay tuned for my PAX post!