Manga Monday- Claymore volume: The Silver-Eyed Slayer

Today’s post is on Claymore volume 1 by Norihiro Yagi. It is the first in the long running Claymore series. It is 187 pages long and is published by Shonen Jump Advanced. The cover is a close up of the main character Clare. The intended reader is someone who likes dark plots, high action, and strong female characters. There is mild foul language, no sex, and lots of violence in this book. The story is told from third person close of the main character. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- In a world where monsters called Yoma prey on humans and live among them in disguise, humanity’s only hope is a new breed of warrior known as Claymores. Half human, hlaf monster, these silver-eyes slayers posses supernatural strength, but are condemned to fight their savage impulses or lose their humanity completely.
A village is gripped by fear and paranoia when a Yoma claims six lives. The Claymore who is send to slay the creature isn’t what the villagers expect at all. In fact, she seems more monster than human.


Review- A good start to a series. The story starts with the villagers arguing about sending for a Claymore but as much as they fear the Claymores they fear the Yoma even more. Clare comes and she is a quiet warrior with no interest in anything more than her prey. The blurb does not give anything about the story. We get some world building with more than just the monsters. We get to see what happens when a Claymore loses the battle to control the monster within. The second main character is a young boy who Clare saves and wants to help her with saving others but as he is just a human the only thing that he can do is cook for her. I look forward to seeing where this series is going to go.

I give this volume a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I bought this manga with my own money.

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Film Friday- One Punch Man

An anime television adaptation by Madhouse aired in Japan between October and December 2015. It was dubbed in English during the summer of 2016, and later that year a planned second season was announced.

An anime adaptation was announced in the 15th issue of Weekly Young Jump on March 10, 2015. The series’ first season was directed by Shingo Natsume at Madhouse and written by Tomohiro Suzuki. The series also features character designs by Chikashi Kubota, who also serves as chief animation director, music by Makoto Miyazaki and art design by Shigemi Ikeda and Yukiko Maruyama. Ken Hashimoto serves as the series color key artist, Akane Fushihara is the director of photography and Kashiko Kimura serves as the series editor, and Shoji Hata does sound design. The opening theme song is “The Hero!! ~Ikareru Ken ni Honō o Tsukero~” (THE HERO!! ~怒れる拳に火をつけろ~, “The Hero!! Set Fire to the Furious Fist”) by JAM Project, and the closing theme is “Hoshi Yori Saki ni Mitsukete Ageru” (星より先に見つけてあげる, “I’ll Find It Before the Stars for You”) by Hiroko Moriguchi.

One-Punch Man‘s first season aired in Japan between October 5, 2015 and December 21, 2015 on TV Tokyo, airing at later dates on TVO, TVQ, KBS, BS Japan, and AT-X, and ran for 12 episodes. The season streamed on Niconico and was simulcast on Hulu, Daisuki, and Viz Media’s Neon Alley service. A preview screening was held in the Saitama City Cultural Center on September 6, 2015. The series is licensed by Viz Media in North America, and by Kaze UK in the United Kingdom. An original video animation was released with the tenth manga volume on December 4, 2015. Additional OVA episodes are included with Blu-ray Disc & DVD volumes of the season, the first of which was released on December 24, 2015. Murata announced in the last weeks of the first season’s airing schedule that he was working on making a second season a reality, but had not confirmed it was in development as of December 2015. A second season was later confirmed in September 2016 and is currently in production. Viz Media announced that they were working on an English-language dub of One-Punch Man at Anime Boston 2016. On July 1 of the same year, It was announced during Toonami’s Anime Expo panel that the series would begin airing on July 16, 2016.

Saitama

The title character is a bald-headed 25-year-old man who has been bored of fighting because he is easily able to defeat enemies with a single punch. He lives in an apartment in City Z. Three years prior to the start of the series (and when he had hair) he was applying for jobs as a salaryman, where he defeats a crab-like monster that attempted to kill a child. He says he became a hero for the fun of it. Saitama’s abilities consist of superhuman speed, strength, stamina, and durability, which he attributes to a daily training regimen of 100 push-ups, 100 sit-ups, 100 squats and a 10 km run, eating right, and not using the air conditioner or heater to reinforce his mental fortitude. He enters the Hero Association at the lowest C-class tier and rank due to his miserable performance on the written exam and essay, but had broken all the records on the physical portion of the test. He soon advances from doing superheroic deeds, although many of his efforts are not fully recognized because of collateral damage or because he was working with other higher-tiered superheroes. He does not mind letting others have the credit though as demonstrated in his actions following the fight against the Deep Sea King. In the Dark Matter Thieves story arc, he is not bothered by the telekinesis user that throws rocks against him, and has one of the times where he has used his “serious punch”. He becomes friends with S-Class members Bang and King. He knows that King is physically not a superhero, but encourages King to continue projecting his public image of being one; he also visits King’s place and plays video games with him. His superhero name in the association is Bald Cape.

Genos

Genos is a 19-year-old cyborg who becomes Saitama’s disciple after bearing witness to Saitama’s easy victory over Mosquito Girl. Four years prior to the start of the story line, his family was killed by a rampaging cyborg. Genos was nearly killed in the attack and his body was destroyed so, to keep him alive to stop the rampaging cyborg for justice, a scientist named Dr. Kuseno took Genos in and modified his body to make him a cyborg with destructive capabilities. However, Genos remains steadfastly convinced that justice demanded vengeance against and destruction of the cyborg. His perfect score on the entrance exam for the Hero Association places him in S-Class, but he still considers Saitama to be his master and goes with him whenever he is not summoned to other missions. He lives with Saitama after offering a sizable down payment for his share of the rent. His superhero name in the Hero Association is Demon Cyborg

Wednesday News- October 11, 2017

News-

Review: Hitorijime My Hero Episodes 1-12 Streaming- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/review/hitorijime-my-hero/episodes-1-12/.122000

Review: Plum Crazy! Tales of A Tiger-Striped Cat GN 1- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/review/plum-crazy-tales-of-a-tiger-striped-cat/gn-1/.121947

Anime Now!‘s Most Anticipated Fall 2017 Anime- http://www.anime-now.com/entry/2017/10/11/230058?utm_campaign=ANN

This Week in Anime: Why You Should Watch Food Wars!- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/this-week-in-anime/2017-10-10/.122512

Anime-

  • Amagami SS and Amagami SS+ Complete Collection BD
  • D.Gray-man Season 3 Part 1 DVD
  • One Piece Season 9 Part 3 DVD
  • Persona 4 The Animation BD
  • ReLIFE BD/DVD
  • ReLIFE Limited Edition BD/DVD
  • Slave Princess Olivia BD
  • Space Patrol Luluco BD/DVD

Manga-

  • Ajin – Demi-Human Graphic Novel (GN) 10
  • Aoba-kun’s Confessions GN 3 (Digital Only)
  • As the Gods Will: The Second Series GN 21 (Digital Only)
  • Case Closed GN 64
  • Chihayafuru GN 5 (Digital Only)
  • Clockwork Planet GN 5
  • Finder Deluxe Edition GN 3
  • Fire Force GN 6
  • Gangsta: Cursed GN 3
  • Jackass! GN 1
  • Kokkoku: Moment by Moment GN 1 (Digital Only)
  • Lord Marksman and Vanadis GN 5
  • Magi GN 26
  • Magical Sempai GN 2 (Digital Only)
  • Monster Hunter: Flash Hunter GN 10
  • Oh My Goddess! Omnibus GN 6
  • Real Account GN 8 (Digital Only)
  • Real Girl GN 4 (Digital Only)
  • Sherlock: The Blind Banker GN
  • Spirit Circle GN 1
  • The World’s Greatest First Love: The Case of Ritsu Onodera GN 8

Other-

  • Bad Apple Wars PS Vita Game
  • Cyberdimension Neptunia 4 Goddesses Online PS4 Game
  • DRRR!! The Greatest Hits Sweet Strange Memories CD
  • DRRRWRAPPING!! DRRR!! Best CD/DVD
  • Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash Novel 3
  • Juni Taisen – Zodiac War Novel (Hardcover)
  • Touhou Kobuto V Burst Battle PS4 Game

Manga Monday- One Punch Man

One-Punch Man is an ongoing Japanese superhero parody webcomic created by an author using the pseudonym One which began publication in early 2009. The series quickly went viral, surpassing 7.9 million hits in June 2012. The Japanese shortened name Wanpanman is a play on the long-running children’s character Anpanman, wanpan being a contraction of wanpanchi (“one punch”). One-Punch Man tells the story of Saitama, an extremely overpowered superhero, who has grown bored by the absence of challenge in his fight against evil and seeks to find a worthy opponent.

A digital manga remake of the series, illustrated by Yusuke Murata, began publication on Shueisha’s Young Jump Web Comics website in 2012. The chapters are periodically collected and printed into tankōbon volumes, with twelve released as of December 2, 2016. Viz Media has licensed the remake for English serialization in its Weekly Shonen Jump digital magazine.

One-Punch Man had 2.2 million copies in print in November 2013, 3.2 million copies in April 2014, and 4.5 million copies in November 2014. By November 2016, this number had grown to 11.1 million copies in print. The series was one of ten nominated for the seventh annual Manga Taishō Awards in 2014. As of July 2017, the manga had 13 million copies in print.

Once released in the United States, both the first and second volumes debuted on the New York Times Manga Best Sellers list, at first and second place, respectively, and stayed there for two weeks. Volume one dropped to second place for the third week, while volume two fell off the list altogether. Volume one was still on the list for a fourth week. The series was nominated for an Eisner Award in 2015.

Plot

On an unnamed Earth-like super-continent planet, strange monsters and supervillains have been mysteriously appearing and causing disasters. To combat them, the world’s heroes have risen to fight them. Saitama is one such hero, hailing from the metropolis of Z-City and easily defeating monsters and villains with a single punch. However, he has become bored with his superhuman power and only gets truly excited when fighting strong opponents that can challenge him. Over the course of the series, Saitama encounters various superheroes, supervillains, and monsters. He gains a disciple in the form of the cyborg Genos and eventually joins the Hero Association in order to gain official recognition. He smashes an incoming meteor, defeats boss villains like the Deep Sea King. When the alien Dark Matter Thieves invade and destroy City A, Saitama defeats their leader Lord Boros using a serious punch.

Saitama gets to know other super heroes in the group, becoming friends with old martial artist Bang and a superhero named King who is actually a cowardly nonviolent otaku. When the Hero Association executive Sitch tries to recruit villains to become superheroes, a villain named Garo emerges and starts beating down many of the other heroes, prompting the association to make a small effort to stop him. In order to learn more about martial arts, Saitama enters a tournament. More ferocious monsters start showing up in the various cities, wearing down many of the heroes. A group of them kidnap an Association sponsor’s son. The Hero Association learns that that the monsters have organized into a Monster Association, and that they are also recruiting members by having fighters and others ingest monster cells that transform them into monsters that have far more power.

Over the interwining course of Garo and the Hero Association, it is discovered that the monsters have made their headquarters in the abandoned area of Z-City, which happens to be inhabited by Saitama alone. Garo encounters all the S-Class, or the ranked strongest, heroes, and proceeds to continue his ‘monstrification’ process during the battles. Finally he encounters Saitama(Who had come annoyed at the noise from the fight), whose attitude and strength infuriates and eventually destroys Garo’s will, then reveals his vision for the future. Saitama, out of character, understands his pain, and under the threat by the defeated heroes to kill Garo, Garo leaves before anyone can catch him.

Film Friday- Super Gals!

An anime adaptation produced by Studio Pierrot entitled Super Gals! Kotobuki Ran aired in Japan on TV Tokyo between April 1, 2001 and March 31, 2002, running a length of 52 episodes. The series aired on Sundays from 8:30 to 9:00, and the timeslot was taken over by another TV anime entitled Ultra Lightining Express Hikarian after this anime finished. Episodes 1-26 had been licensed and dubbed for North American distribution by ADV Films under the name Super Gals! and was distributed on DVD from 2003 to 2004. The Right Stuf International announced at Anime Expo 2006 that they had licensed all the episodes, including 27-52 and released a subtitled boxset containing the remaining 26 episodes on January 16, 2007. A box set containing all 52 episodes was also released in 2010

Characters

Ran Kotobuki 
Ran Kotobuki is the title character of the series and its main protagonist. She is a very strong-willed, athletic, and attractive gal who rules the streets of Shibuya. Although she comes from a long line of police officers, she is ditzy and absent-minded when it comes to school and the only subject she gets good grades on is physical education and her poorest subjects are mathematics and literature. When she was in elementary school, she was enthusiastic about becoming a police officer, but quit the ambition after learning that she won’t be able to dye her hair or wear her favorite accessories. She is usually obsessed with anything that is trendy or catches her eye, usually brown-nosing guys who find her cute to buy them, and is also quite gluttonous. But inside her heart, she has a strong sense of justice that runs in her blood and is extremely intimidating and tough when she’s in combat mode. She is a role model to the junior students at Hounan High for her social status as a magnificent gal for justice and her very understanding nature for teens who are learning to cope, but some who looked upon her with jealousy and anger. Despite being an underachiever, Ran is very smart and has a good memory on what she is interested in (such as shopping). There is a running gag in the manga that some of her friends say that if only she used that (memory, concentration, etc.) on studying, she’d get somewhere in life. She also has a foreign friend, Vivian Lin, a Taiwanese celebrity who looks amazingly like her, whom she met during a school trip to Taiwan (only shown in two stories of the manga). Ran wishes that she has soft hair, but according to Rui Otahata, Rei Otohata’s cousin, her hair is damaged and dry due to the amount of bleach she pours on it.
Miyu Yamazaki 
Miyu is an independent, headstrong, and very kind-hearted classmate of Ran and one of her closest friends. However, behind her romantic and cute cover lies a dark past. When she was in third grade, her parents divorced (her father is currently remarried) and she lived with her mother, who paid more attention to looking for a new man rather than to see Miyu grow up (she despised Miyu because she reminded her of her divorced husband). She once was the leader of a street gang called the “Resistance”, often wreaking mayhem and irritation during middle school and had a rough-mannered and threatening personality that Ran despised. One day, Yamato (by then a rookie cop) saved her from a tough situation, and his dedication to helping with Miyu’s problems made her fall in love with him. Because of that, she left the life of crime and became a much more polite girl after Yamato told her his wish for her to be good and eventually became great friends with Ran. However, she remains an incredible fighter and can get back to her previous violent self when someone completely upsets her and when she becomes uncharacteristically furious. In conversation, she has a habit of referring to herself in the third person, though occasionally uses first person in more serious situations. Ran often remarks how Miyu is “lovey-dovey” with Yamato and there is a running gag on both series when they are interrupted when they are trying to kiss, usually by Ran. When her mom eventually moved out, she moved into a new apartment and married Yamato in Hawaii in the manga.
Aya Hoshino 
Aya is one of the top students in Ran’s class, but she was secretly doing enjo kōsai to earn money according to the first chapter/episode, since her parents were very strict about her being in number one in academics and wouldn’t let her do any part-time jobs or go out. Ran found out and confronted her about it, fortunately making her realize that she was doing the wrong thing before Aya could actually “do it” with somebody. Since then, Aya became good friends with Ran and Miyu. She is a shy but honest and studious individual who enjoys academics while also longing for excitement every now and then, which is thankfully provided by Ran. Aya strengthens and changes during course of the series. She’s usually a crybaby when it comes to sad or happy moments, but she grows braver and learns to stand on her own.
Rei Otohata 
Rei Otohata is a student at Meisho Daichi High School (Champion High School in ADV’s dub). He is also known as “#1”, because he was featured in a magazine as being the coolest and most handsome teenage guy in the area. He rides a motorcycle and is good friends with Yuya. He has a cold and detached demeanor, and is constantly annoyed by Ran. He has trouble expressing his feelings towards others.
Yuya Aso 
Yuya is also a student at Meisho Daichi High School, and he is known as “#2” or “Second Place”, as he was the runner-up to Rei in a popularity magazine poll. He and Rei are friends. Early in the series, he develops a crush on Ran, even role-playing what it would be nice to date her, but Ran is oblivious to the fact. The crush gets worse when Tatsuki joins in and confesses successfully to Ran. As time passes, he helps Mami Honda out to the point that Mami starts falling for him, even though he still has a crush on Ran. Near the end of the series, he gets over Ran, and ends up dating Mami.
Tatsuki Kuroi 
Tatsuki Kuroi (also nicknamed Tatsukichi) is a wild and kind student at Machida West High School, and he calls himself “the parapara king of Machida” (also known as “Machida Black”, since the “kuro” in his last name means “black”). In the manga he is also called Blackwell (the literal translation of his surname). He is often nicknamed “Monkey Boy” since his personality is very similar to that of a monkey. He becomes Ran’s boyfriend, although she studiously avoids anything remotely approaching intimacy other than hugging or holding hands. thus calming him. He likes to use English words and phrases in his conversations. Sometimes he says a phrase in English then he will say then same phrase in Japanese, or he will say a phrase that the first part is in Japanese, and then the second part in English, and then he will say the same phrase again, but switch what is in Japanese and what is in English (example: “Black nichiyōbi“, “Black Sunday”, and then “Kuroi Sunday”). He also likes to call Yuya “brother” in English.

Manga Monday- Gals!

Gals! is a shōjo manga written and illustrated by Mihona Fujii. The manga was published by Shueisha and serialized in Ribon from 1998 to 2002. The manga was also published in the U.S. by CMX.

Plot

The series revolves around the kogal subculture in Japan. The title character, Ran Kotobuki is the self-proclaimed “world’s greatest gal.” As a teenager in Shibuya, she is determined to live out the gal lifestyle for the rest of her life, and she has gained a reputation as the most respected gal in all of Shibuya. However, she comes from a family of police officers—her grandparents, her parents, and her older brother are all officers, and her younger sister is set on following in their footsteps. Ran has other dreams for her future, but as frequently shown, she has acquired the family’s sense of justice and spirit. Her two friends, Miyu and Aya, also have their own problems and circumstances.

Film Friday- Hunter x Hunter

In 1999, Hunter × Hunter was adapted into a 62-episode anime television series produced by Nippon Animation and directed by Kazuhiro Furuhashi. The show premiered on Japan’s Fuji TV and ran until 2001. Three separate original video animations (OVAs) totaling 30 episodes were subsequently produced by Nippon Animation and released in Japan from 2002 to 2004. A second anime television series by Madhouse aired on Nippon Television from October 2011 to September 2014, with two animated theatrical films released in 2013. There are also numerous audio albums, video games, musicals, and other media based on Hunter × Hunter. The manga has been translated into English and released in North America by Viz Media since April 2005. Both television series were also licensed by Viz, with the first series having aired on the Funimation Channel in 2009 and the second series premiering on Adult Swim’s Toonami block since April 16, 2016.

Anime

First series (1999)

The first Hunter × Hunter anime adaptation was produced by the company Nippon Animation and directed by Kazuhiro Furuhashi, who had previously directed the Rurouni Kenshin television series. A total of 62 episodes of Hunter × Hunter were broadcast on the Japanese terrestrial television network Fuji Television from October 16, 1999 to March 31, 2001 during the same Saturday evening timeslot as the anime version of Togashi’s previous series YuYu Hakusho. Additionally, Hunter × Hunter has aired on the satellite television station Animax. Although it closely follows the manga, the violence in the anime version is lessened for younger audiences. Marvelous Entertainment has released all episodes of the series in Japan on DVD in 13 separate volumes between September 20, 2000 and September 19, 2001.

Viz Media licensed the Hunter × Hunter anime for distribution in the Region 1 market, with English voice-work handled by The Ocean Group at Blue Water Studios in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. The series was released on four DVD boxed sets from December 9, 2008 to December 1, 2009. Starting with the second set, Viz partnered with Warner Home Video to distribute the DVDs. Hunter × Hunter began airing in the United States on the Funimation Channel in the spring of 2009.

Original video animations

When the Hunter × Hunter anime covered most of its source material by 2001, Nippon Animation made the decision to end the adaptation rather than continue it with filler. Due to fans’ unsatisfied reactions to the conclusion of the television series, three subsequent OVAs were produced by Nippon Animation. These carried the plot from where the broadcast left off during the Yorknew City arc and covered the Greed Island arc. The first OVA series was directed by Satoshi Saga and ran for eight episodes in four released volumes from January 17 to April 17, 2002. The second OVA series, Hunter × Hunter: Greed Island, was directed by Yukihiro Matsushita and ran for eight episodes in four released volumes from February 19 to May 21, 2003. The third OVA series, Hunter × Hunter: G.I. Final, was directed by Makoto Sato and ran for 14 episodes in seven released volumes from March 3 to August 18, 2004. After the original anime’s initial run on Animax, the OVAs were aired successively. Viz has shown no intention of releasing English versions of the OVAs.

Second series (2011)

A new Hunter × Hunter anime adaptation was announced in July 2011. Instead of continuing the story from the OVA series, it restarts the story from the beginning of the manga in an attempt to adapt it more accurately. The series is directed by Hiroshi Kōjina, produced by Madhouse, scripted by Jun Maekawa, and character designs were created by Takahiro Yoshimatsu. The series began airing Sunday mornings on Nippon Television starting October 2, 2011. It switched to airing at 1:29 am on Tuesday nights from October 8, 2013 onwards. The series ended on September 23, 2014 after 148 episodes. An hour after each episode aired in Japan, American website Crunchyroll provided English subtitled simulcasts in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand. The series started airing on Animax Asia on April 24 2012. On October 9, 2015, Viz Media announced their license to the reboot anime at their panel at New York Comic Con. They will release the anime on DVD/Blu-ray with an English dub. On April 1, 2016, it was announced that the series will premiere on Adult Swim’s Toonami block, which began airing on April 16, 2016.

Films

Before the first anime television series was created, a short film adaptation of Hunter × Hunter was shown as part of the 1998 “Jump Super Anime Tour” alongside similar adaptations of Seikimatsu Leader den Takeshi! and One Piece. Produced by Studio Pierrot and directed by Noriyuki Abe, it depicts the early events of the manga up to Gon’s ocean voyage from Whale Island.

A film adaptation by the second television anime’s staff called Hunter × Hunter: Phantom Rouge, featuring an original story, was announced in March 2012. It was released on January 12, 2013 by Toho. It centers around Gon and his friends efforts to retrieve Kurapika’s eyes which were stolen by Omokage, the original person with the No. 4 spider tattoo. The film is based on an unpublished story manga creator Yoshihiro Togashi wrote around 10 years before.

A second film was announced following the first one’s debut titled Hunter × Hunter: The Last Mission. The film has some focus on Netero, the chairman of the Hunter Association as Gon and his friends discover the dark secrets behind his past. The movie was released on December 27, 2013. The DVD and Blu-ray was released on July 23, 2014.

Plot

The story follows a young boy named Gon Freecss, who was told all his life that both his parents were dead. But when he learns from Kite, an apprentice of his father Ging Freecss, that he is still alive and has since become an accomplished Hunter, Gon leaves his home on Whale Island (くじら島 Kujira Tō) to take the Hunter Examination in order to become a Hunter like him. During the exam, Gon meets and soon befriends three of the other applicants: Kurapika, the last remaining member of the Kurta clan who wishes to become a Hunter in order to avenge his clan and recover their scarlet-glowing eyes that were plucked from their corpses by a band of thieves known as the Phantom Troupe. Leorio, a prospective physician who, in order to pay for medical school, desires the financial benefits that Hunters receive. And Killua Zoldyck, another twelve-year-old boy who has left his former life as a member of the world’s most notorious assassin family. Among many other examinees, Gon continuously encounters Hisoka, a mysterious and deadly transmuter who takes an interest in him. After passing by many trials together, Gon and his friends end up passing the exam except for Killua, who fails after killing another applicant due to being controlled by his brother, Illumi, and runs away to his family’s estate in shame.

After Gon and the others convince Killua to rejoin their side, Leorio and Kurapika depart temporarily for their own personal reasons, while Gon and Killua set for the Heavens Arena (天空闘技場 Tenkū Tōgijō), a skyscraper where thousands of martial artists compete daily in fighting tournaments, seeking to improve themselves, and gain monetary rewards. There they meet a kung fu master named Wing, who trains them in utilizing Nen, a Qi-like life energy used by its practicers to manifest parapsychological abilities, and is also considered to be the final requirement to pass the Hunter Exam. Sometime later, Gon and his friends reunite again in Yorknew City (ヨークシンシティ Yōkushin Shiti) where they have a clash with the Phantom Troupe. In the occasion, some of the members of the band of thieves are killed by Kurapika and he is forced to give up the chance of hunting down the rest. In order to rescue Gon and Killua, who were captured by them, but not without succeeding in sealing the powers of their leader Chrollo Lucilfer.

A few days later, Gon and Killua achieve their objective and begin playing Greed Island, an extremely rare and expensive video game with Nen-like properties following some clues about Ging’s whereabouts. While exploring the game, it is revealed that its scenario is actually set somewhere in the real world, created with Nen by none other than Ging himself. Outclassed by the difficulty of the challenges in the game at first, they are soon joined and trained by Biscuit Krueger, an experienced teacher of Nen and kung fu master. During their stay on Greed Island, Killua takes a short break to apply for the Hunter Examination again, this time passes with success. The trio then complete the game together against all odds and Gon obtains the right to choose the artifacts from the game necessary to reunite with his father.

However, Gon decides to have Killua accompany him to meet his father using the aritfacts, but they send them to meet Kite instead. The duo then decide to help with Kite’s research, and upon discovering a giant insect limb the group discovers that it came from a man-sized Chimera Ant queen. An insect that devours other creatures and then gives birth to progeny that inherit the characteristics of the different species it has eaten. The queen washes up onto an island nation called the Neo-Green Life (N.G.L.) Autonomous Region, where she quickly develops a taste for humans and builds a colony powerful enough to overcome the population, specially when its offspring learn the power of Nen after consuming some Hunters. Upon facing the Chimera Ants, Kite sacrifices himself to allow Gon and Killua to flee and alert the Hunter Association. After months of preparation, the Association sends a team of some of their most powerful Hunters, including Netero, the president of the Association himself to defeat the Ants and their king Meruem, whose subjects secretly overthrew the government of the nearby Republic of East Gorteau as part of their plan of subduing all of mankind. Despite losing to Meruem in combat, Netero ends up killing him with a bomb implanted in his body that poisons him to death soon after. In the occasion, Gon has a showdown with Neferpitou, the Ant who killed Kite and despite having exacted his revenge is hospitalized and in critical condition.

After the Chimera Ant incident is resolved, the Hunter Association’s top echelons the Zodiacs, from which Ging is a member, begin the process of choosing Netero’s replacement as Chairman, while Killua returns home to ask for his younger sister Alluka to save Gon’s life. However, his family is unwilling to risk losing Alluka or having her dangerous powers used against them, but after evading his older brother Illumi’s attempts to intercept him, Killua manages to bring Alluka to Gon’s side and have him fully recovered, before sealing her powers completely to ensure that she can have a normal life. Killua then parts ways with Gon, as he wants to travel the world with Alluka who had never seen the outside world before, while Gon himself finally meets his father and learns the true nature of his quest.

Some time later, Netero’s son Beyond assembles an expedition to the Dark Continent (暗黒大陸 Ankoku Tairiku). The forbidden, vast area outside of the known world that is sponsored by the Kingdom of Kakin. Fearing that the expedition may bring disaster to the world, just like it occurred in previous attempts, the world’s five greatest powers accept that Kakin join their ranks in exchange for full authority over its findings. To accompany Beyond and prevent him from doing something unexpected, the Zodiacs decide to watch over him and invite Kurapika and Leorio to join them. Replacing Ging and the former Vice-Chairman Pariston, who assembled their own team by Beyond’s request.

Wednesday News- September 27, 2017

News-

Review: K: Return of Kings- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/review/k/return-of-kings/blu-ray-dvd/.121812

In Another World With My Smartphone Finale- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/review/in-another-world-with-my-smartphone/episode-12/.121907

Answerman:Why Don’t Manga Publishers Announce When Books Go Out Of Print?- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/column/2017-09-27/.121915

Kino’s Journey TV Anime’s 2nd Promo Video Previews Ti, Nagi Yanagi’s Song- https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2017-09-27/kino-journey-tv-anime-2nd-promo-video-previews-ti-nagi-yanagi-song/.121931

Anime-

  • Crusher Joe: The OVA’s DVDP
  • Dance with Devils BD/DVD
  • Hyou-ka Part 2 BD/DVD
  • Joker Game BD/DVD
  • Kaiba BD/DVD
  • Naruto Shippūden Set 32 DVD Uncut
  • Occultic;Nine Volume 1
  • Project A-Ko 2: Plot of the Daitokuji Finalcial Group DVD
  • Project A-ko 3: Cinderella Rhapsody DVD
  • Project A-Ko 4: Final DVD
  • Puzzle & Dragons X Part 1 BD/DVD
  • Soul Link DVD
  • Ushio & Tora Premium Box Set BD/DVD

Manga-

  • 12 Beast GN 5
  • All Out!! GN 1 (Digital Only)
  • Altair: A Record of Battles GN 4 (Digital Only)
  • Aphorism GN 12 (Digital Only)
  • Crimson Prince GN 12 (Digital Only)
  • Days GN 5 (Digital Only)
  • Deathtopia GN 4 (Digital Only)
  • Flying Witch GN 3
  • Frau Faust GN 1
  • Giant Killing GN 6 (Digital Only)
  • In/Spectre GN 6
  • Infini-T Force GN 1
  • Marai Holic GN 11
  • Otome Mania!! GN 2
  • Princess Jellyfish GN 6
  • Princess Resurrection GN 18 (Digital Only)
  • Real Girl GN 3 (Digital Only)
  • Sekirei GN 12 (Digital Only)
  • Shojo Fight GN 1 (Digital Only)
  • Species Domain GN 3
  • The Testament of Sister New Devil Storm! GN 1
  • Tokyo Ghoul [Jack] GN (Digital Only)
  • Tsuredure Children GN 3 (Digital Only)

Other-

  • Blue Reflection PS4/PC Game
  • Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony PS4/Vita/PC Game
  • Ghost in the Shell: The Official Movie Novelization
  • Gundam Versus PS4 Game
  • I Became the Secretary of a Hero! Volume 1 (Digital Only)
  • Monster Girl Encyclopedia Volume 2 (Hardcover)
  • Pokken Tournament DX Switch Game
  • Senran Kagura: Peach Beach Splash PS4 Game
  • Summon Night 6: Lost Borders PS4/Vita Game
  • A Small Charred Face Novel

Manga Monday- Hunter x Hunter

Hunter × Hunter (abbreviated: HxH) is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Yoshihiro Togashi. It has been serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine and journal since March 3, 1998, although the manga has frequently gone on extended hiatuses since 2006. As of June 2017, 360 chapters have been collected into 34 volumes by Shueisha. The story focuses on a young boy named Gon Freecss, who discovers that his father, who he was told was dead, is actually alive and a world-renowned Hunter, a licensed profession for those who specialize in fantastic pursuits such as locating rare or unidentified animal species, treasure hunting, surveying unexplored enclaves, or hunting down lawless individuals. Despite being abandoned by his father, Gon departs upon a journey to follow in his footsteps, pass the rigorous Hunter Examination, and eventually find his father. Along the way, Gon meets various other Hunters and also encounters the paranormal. The original inspiration for the manga came from Togashi’s own collecting hobby.

Hunter × Hunter has been a huge critical and financial success and has become one of Shueisha’s best-selling manga series, having sold 66 million copies in Japan alone as of 2014.

Hunters are licensed, elite members of humanity who are capable of tracking down secret treasures, rare beasts, or even other individuals. To obtain a license one must pass the rigorous annual Hunter Examination run by the Hunter Association, which has a success rate of less than one in a hundred-thousand. A Hunter may be awarded up to three stars; a single star for making “remarkable achievements in a particular field”; they may then be upgraded to two stars for “holding an official position” and mentoring another Hunter up to single star level; and finally upgraded to three stars for “remarkable achievements in multiple fields.”

Nen is the ability to control one’s own life energy or aura, which is constantly emitted from them whether they know it or not. There are four basic Nen techniques; Ten  maintains the aura in the body, strengthening it for defense, Zetsu shuts the aura flow off, useful for concealing one’s presence and relieving fatigue, Ren  enables a user to produce more Nen, and Hatsu is a person’s specific use of Nen. Nen users are classified into six types based on their Hatsu abilities; Enhancers strengthen and reinforce their natural physical abilities, Emitters project aura out of their bodies, Manipulators control objects or living things, Transmuters change the type or properties of their aura, Conjurers create objects out of their aura, and Specialists  have unique abilities that do not fall into the previous categories. A Nen user can enter into a Contract whereby pledging to follow certain Limitations , their abilities are strengthened in relation to how strict they are. An example of this is Kurapika who, in order to have an unbreakable chain that will hold members of the Phantom Troupe no matter what, offered his life should he use it on anyone other than its members.

Film Friday- Aria the Animation

The series has been adapted as an anime television series, with a first season broadcast in 2005, a second season in 2006, an OVA released September 2007, and a third season in 2008 that ended around the same time as the manga serialization.

The anime is licensed in North America by The Right Stuf International, which released all three seasons a box sets under its Nozomi Entertainment imprint between 30 September 2008 and 2 March 2010.

The series is set in the 24th century on a terraformed Mars, now named Aqua, and follows a young woman named Akari Mizunashi as she trains as an apprentice gondolier (known as Undines). The series has been praised for its calm pacing, optimistic worldview, beautiful art, and, for the anime, the quality of the soundtrack. A new OVA, called Aria the Avvenire, was released in the 10th anniversary Blu-Ray Box sets of the anime series between 24 December 2015 and 24 June 2016.

Characters

Akari Mizunashi  
Voiced by: Erino Hazuki
A native of Japan on Manhome (Earth) who immigrates to Aqua when she is 15 to become an undine. While not as skillful at rowing a gondola as Alice nor as familiar with the history of her adopted city as Aika, Akari makes friends quickly and easily converses with customers and other strangers. She is depicted as optimistic and cheerful, finding enjoyment in things or events that others think humdrum and mundane, for which Aika and Alice call her “mysterious”; in the anime, Aika and Alice separately comment that Akari seems to attract mysterious phenomena to her. Akari often says Hohe or Hahi, which is her short version of “wow.” When Akari used gondola simulations on Manhome, she accidentally learned how to row backwards and has to relearn the proper method when she starts at Aria Company; however, as Alicia puts it, “When rowing backward, Akari-chan is unrivaled!”
Most chapters of the manga and episodes of the anime are framed with narration taken from e-mails written by Akari. In the anime, the recipient is a young girl named Ai, a customer in the first episode who becomes Akari’s pen pal, but in the manga the recipient is someone she does not name and is referred to as zenryaku but has never seen.
At the start of Aqua, Akari arrives on Aqua as a new Pair (apprentice) at Aria Company. In chapter 5 of Aqua, when Aika is promoted to Single (journeyman), Alicia tests and promotes Akari as well. Later, in chapter 58 of Aria and episode 12 of Aria the Origination, after Aika is promoted to Prima (full undine), Alicia gives Akari the test for Prima. When Akari passes, she is given the title “Aquamarine” (遙かなる蒼 Harukanaru Ao, lit. “Distant Blue”).
Alicia Florence 
Voiced by: Sayaka Ohara
The only other undine with Aria Company, Alicia is one of the Three Water Fairies of Neo-Venezia, known by the title “Snow White”. At the start of the series, she is 19 years old and the most popular undine in the city, noted especially for her graceful rowing style. She was promoted to Prima at 15, the youngest ever to do so. Like Akari, she is relaxed and easy-going, but she also likes to tease others, especially her childhood friend Akira. Her favorite phrase is ara ara (“Well Well”) and she frequently giggles, to Akira’s annoyance. According to Grandma Akino, she is an excellent undine because of her ability to enjoy everything.
At the end of the series, Alicia announces her upcoming marriage (though to whom is never stated) and retirement to take an administrative position with the Gondola Association. She tells Akari she had put off her Prima exam because she had been planning to retire after that, and did not want to leave her student and friend. According to issue No. 6 of Monthly Undine, after her retirement, “Snow White” is designated the 8th “honored appellation” by the Gondola Association, as an undine who made great contributions to the industry.
Aika S. Granzchesta
Voiced by: Chiwa Saitō
The first friend Akari makes on Aqua, Aika is 16 when they meet. Aika is a Pair and then Single at Himeya Company. She is the only daughter and heir of Himeya Company’s owners, but does not enjoy the distinction as she feels the company’s employees fawned on her too much. Aika speaks bluntly and often responds to Akari’s idealistic comments with “Embarrassing remarks are not allowed!”. Despite their contrasting personalities, she gets along well with Akari and Alice, but frequently squabbles with her mentor, Akira, whom she resembles. Aika considers herself reliable, especially compared to distractible Akari and antisocial Alice, but both her friends call her a crybaby for her tendency to tear up when emotional. She is proud of her gondola skill as an undine, and can be very competitive about it. She also greatly admires Alicia, and finds any excuse to visit Aria Company—and once tells Akari that if not for her family obligations, she would have joined Aria Company. Over the course of the series, Aika develops feelings for Al.
In chapter 58, Aika becomes a Prima, taking the title “Rosen Queen”. She takes charge of a newly opened Himeya branch office, in preparation for one day taking on the whole company.
Akira E. Ferrari 
Voiced by: Junko Minagawa
One of Neo-Venezia’s Three Water Fairies, and a native of Aqua. As a Prima undine, Akira is called the “Crimson Rose” (真紅の薔薇 Shinku no Bara) and is famed for her conversational skills. She has many admirers among her customers, especially her female ones, but she considers herself very feminine. In flashbacks, Akira is shown as very tomboyish when young, to the point of using a male pronoun for “I”and being mistaken for a boy by Akatsuki. Akira is mentor to Aika, who calls her the Demon Instructor for her strictness and her loud, brusque personality. Akira is particularly harsh with Aika because she believes there is potential in her, and Aika admits that it is only due to Akira’s strictness and honesty that she has become a good undine.
Akira and Alicia are childhood friends, and their relationship mirrors Aika and Akari’s, though Alicia teases Akira far more than Akari does Aika. Akira still resents that Alicia became a Prima before her. Upon Alicia’s retirement at the end of the series, Akira becomes the undisputed top undine in Neo-Venezia.
Alice Carroll 
Voiced by: Ryō Hirohashi
Alice is a 14-year-old undine for Orange Planet. She first appears (in volume 3 of Aria/episode 3 of Aria the Animation) as a standoffish, detached girl. Aika later describes her as anti-social and complains about her tendency to put on a grim face and speak in a quiet voice. Alice speaks in a deadpan manner, though she frequently uses dekkai as an intensifier. Although initially only a Pair, her rowing already surpasses both Aika and Akari’s—for which skill she was scouted by Orange Planet despite her young age. Despite working for rival companies, Alice, Akari, and Aika often practice together, and Alice sincerely enjoys the others’ company, though this does not stop her from telling them to be quiet when they argue. Because of her age and lower status, Aika often addresses her as “kōhai-chan”. Through her friendship with Akari and Aika, Alice lightens up as the series progresses, though she still struggles with her detachment.
For a long time, Alice was not confident in her singing skills, until Athena advises her simply enjoy what she sings and not worry about her performance. In volume 11 of Aria, after Alice graduates from middle school, she is promoted to Prima straight from Pair, the first undine to do so, and is given the title “Orange Princess”. Her name comes from Lewis Carroll, author of Alice in Wonderland.
Athena Glory
Voiced by: Tomoko Kawakami
One of Neo-Venezia’s Three Water Fairies, known by the title “Siren” for her beautiful singing voice. She is Alice’s mentor at Orange Planet. She is quiet most of the time and often appears to be an airhead who does not pay attention to her surroundings (in the anime, she is shown more than once forgetting to duck while rowing under a bridge), but she genuinely cares about Alice. Athena has a strange laugh that comes out sounding as though she is angry. She was a trainee undine with Alicia and Akira, and joined them in joint practice sessions much like Akari, Aika, and Alice do now. At the conclusion of the series, Athena semi-retires from being an undine in order to debut as an opera singer.