Anime World Order Show # 145 – We Bet McDevitt Prevented It From Being Named Russell Mania

This episode came out a month late because of trauma incurred by a CG talking dog and also CG drifting cars, the one-two punch of which was enough to give Gerald pause before he could review the CG anime adaptation of Knights of Sidonia.

Introduction (0:00 – 41:00)
People–car-loving people and ONLY car-loving people–sure had a lot to say about our Initial D review. We read some more feedback to it. We also touch upon all the various anime crowdfunding projects that started up all within the span of our last episode to now. Most already ended, but two remain: Skip Beat (which within the last few hours met its funding goal as well as its stretch goal for Blu-Rays, so pledge with confidence knowing that you’ll get the show) and the far less certain VR anime CG re-versioning of Dai-Shogun.

Convention season is upon us, and we’re hitting New Jersey twice in a row! Daryl will be a guest at Anime Fan Fest on May 6th to May 8th courtesy of Otaku USA Magazine, then all of us will be at AnimeNEXT June 10th to June 12th. We’ll all be doing panels, and for the sake of making sure the cons in each state are unique, we’ll be doing different things at each convention.

Then on the writing front, the latest issue of Otaku USA Magazine is out, featuring contributions from Daryl and Clarissa. Daryl also wrote a feature on Anime News Network, The Pro Wrestling & Shonen Anime Connection, so do read that and leave a comment/reshare as you see fit.

Promo: Right Stuf Anime (41:00 – 42:15)
We were hoping to have this episode posted in time for the one-day Flash sale on Nendoroid Mikudayo, but it was not to be. Rest assured that Daryl’s latest Right Stuf Anime shipment came in, and it was nothing but quality: Night on the Galactic Railroad, The Venus Wars, and Lupin the Third: Jigen’s Gravestone all on Blu-Ray.

Review: Knights of Sidonia (42:15 – 1:37:45)
Gerald weighs in on the 24-episode CG anime streaming exclusively on Netflix. Sentai Filmworks is handling the physical media release, and the entire original manga by Tsutomu Nihei is available in English courtesy of Vertical Comics. Gerald’s only really seen the anime, Daryl’s main exposure to the series is via the manga, so nobody quite knows what the other is reacting to.

The next episode will likely come out sooner than you’d think what with the conventions mere weeks away, as Daryl will review the Shonen Jump series Food Wars!: Shokugeki no Soma now that all of the manga to date is officially available in English and the first season of the anime simulcast is complete.

20 thoughts on “Anime World Order Show # 145 – We Bet McDevitt Prevented It From Being Named Russell Mania

  1. Another one in the bag fellows, GJ! Sorry about the confusion, I was doing some Twitter follow-list trimming last month… must’ve hit the unsub button while trigger happy.

    The openings to Sidonia by Angela are what got me into the show; the whole military technobeat rock gets me pumped like nothing else. The manga’s definitely a bit on a higher tier to catch the author’s nuances.

    Ajin is bloody brilliant, Daryl’s expressed interest in Otaku USA’s manga section made me pick it up and… it’s basically Death Note for adults. Hope y’all review it in the future.

    A Blade of the Immortal anime [one that was NOT a TV series by Bee Train/Koichi Mashimo like what we got, that is –Daryl] would rock all sorts of sox BUT as Clarissa mentioned… it’s not exactly Kenshin TV shoddy animation. The astrophysical-kendo techniques of each foe, plus Manji’s Alucard’ish nature would require a Hellsing Ultimate-like committee to do it justice.

    Chip cheerios~ looking forward to Yakitate-to-the-extreme food pornography, which is a lot more to say than Kentaro Miura cutting his soul’s wrist with a PS Vita & a bottle of Jergens!

  2. My experience with Sidonia was to force two of my friends to marathon the entire show while playing Magic: the Gathering after watching Guardians of the Galaxy. The nerdiness was so suffocating that day I had to cancel all my social interactions for a month! Personally, I found the action to be right up my alley. The feeling of momentum in every fight scene really got my blood up, and that final ROCKETOOO PUUUNCHEEE! was exactly what I love about mecha.

    https://mangabrog.wordpress.com/2016/02/29/a-2016-interview-with-tsutomu-nihei/
    If you are interested in hearing an interview with Tsutomu Nihei (and several other famous mangaka like Otomo or Taiyo Matsumoto this site is a great resource) check out the link I posted above.

    I still haven’t actually watched any Initial D, but I have done one better: I’m living it! I have a shitty menial job that involves driving through some mountainous areas, and my only joy in life seems to come from making major traffic violations. And your podcast of course.

    Since the last episode, I actually went and did a panel myself at a con! I hosted a panel on gekiga works at Genericon, and even got Evan Minto to sit through my panel. Sure the panel was a mess because of technical difficulties, and only 10 people in total showed up, but I will totally try to do this again.

  3. In terms of the Escaflowne Kickstarter, I heard there was some Sakura-con shadiness going on in terms of an art auction that a piece that was supposed to be in the auction did not turn up at all. This post from Old School Otaku covers more on that:

    https://www.oldschoolotaku.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=12479#p12479

    I still have my Bandai 2 set collection in my possession, so I don’t see a reason to get the latest version unless I feel compelled too. Yea, I was also looking forward to another Phil Perry song, but the fact that Riding Bean did so well in meeting the goal within a couple of hours surprised me on how many people wanted it.

    • I’m sorry, but I fail to see how the sketches not turning up at the auction can lead this person to the immediately conclusion that Funimation did something wrong here. We don’t even know what happened to the sketches. For all we know, the artist decided not to sell them, or even ate them. To immediately assume that Funimation was up to no good is incredibly silly. This person is just upset that he/she didn’t get the sketches, and wants to blame someone.

      I also fail to see how this is related at all to the Escaflowne Kickstarter, barring the tangential relation that stems from this person deciding to pull his/her pledge from it and swear off Funimation products for life after jumping to some rather extreme conclusions.

      Otaku are crazy, and while I know that Funimation’s top dog in the anime industry and it can be awfully tempting to try and dredge up some shit on them, I can’t say that there’s much anything to be dredged here. I do agree that this Kickstarter is wholly unnecessary and is simply a way for them to make some extra money and play the game a little safer, seeing just how willing people are to throw their money at the show, but it was only a matter of time before companies began using Kickstarter like this. While Funimation is definitely greedy (as are most companies, barring mom-‘n-pop-esque operations like Discotek), I doubt they’re at the level where they’re robbing charity auctions.

  4. I knew Gerald was going to go Full-Gerald on this one, but I’d like to point out that my perception of Knights of Sidonia is almost the complete opposite of his. I felt the sense of scale was captured beautifully (there’s a battle that involves 250 mecha at one point) and the hard science fiction elements were the primary draw of the show, with the harem elements being a distant second. I suspect it’s a matter of what people choose to focus on; I liked the sci fi stuff, so it was easy for me to downplay the cutesy relationship stuff, whereas Gerald was so annoyed by it that its presence loomed larger in his mind than it actually is in the show.

    There’s no denying that the visuals of the show are a hurdle that people will have to overcome, specifically the character designs and animation. All of the background stuff and mechanical design is top-notch.

  5. Oh yeah, the Skip Beat kickstarter sailed far past the Bluray release. I helped it out too.

    But anyhow, it’s ironic that Legend of the Dark King, Raoh Gaiden, was mentioned. I just finished watching that yesterday. Though, there’s a pretty good way to cap the series off that some may not of thought of…. Raoh Gaiden then watch Fist of the North Star: The Movie.

    Right, the end of the show is Raoh heading off to fight Kenshiro. The Movie has the conclusion that his TV series is missing. The missing final fight is had. It really makes you think…. if you have enough strength can you produce endless amounts of blood…
    They both don’t syc-up perfectly but it works if you think of the first 90% of the movie as a flashback from Kenshiro’s perspective mostly.
    Last time before this I saw the Movie it was some old Hong Kong bootleg of the Movie as some 90s release. The Discotek/ Easter Sar release did a great job on the restoration. Besides the older animation style, most of the movie might even look clearer than Raoh Gaiden on bluray.

  6. To be more precise, I just finished watching Legend of the Dark King, A Fist of the North Star Side Story; a second time yesterday.
    I usually marathon anime the 1st viewing and about a year later watch it a couple of episodes a day. This time I watched with the FofNS Movie as two days at the end.

  7. I disagree about the Sidonia manga being better. At the time the first season came out, I read the parts covered in it, and it’s just missing a lot of character development that the series fills in. The manga has the wacky love comedy stuff too, but there’s little bits missing between the action and the comedy that the anime adds. It also rearranges the events, so that characters are introduced much earlier in the anime. It’s almost like a director’s cut of the storyline. While I agree the original visual impact is lost in the transition to anime, the coherence of the story is improved quite a bit. Basically, I thought the manga looked good, but was a bit crap, while the anime looked worse, but was a lot more enjoyable.

  8. Netflix is the most influential anime provider in the world? Hah, I laughed. Considering they block everyone outside USia – good joke.

    [Fine, then who IS the most influential English-language anime provider in the world? If you’re about to say “well, you didn’t specify English” then stop right there, because we’re an English-language show. I can always tell it’s you posting because you always use the term “USia” which I thought meant “the United States and Asia” but apparently doesn’t, and what you write requires content moderation; indeed, your last post from back in January was one I couldn’t even approve any of. –Daryl]

  9. I initially watched both seasons of the anime before reading the manga. The anime really did just mix and match scenes and just bookend each season with one of the major space battles. The content is really about the same except for one thing around episode 6-7 of season 2 which there was a major thing omitted from that event which is a very important of the manga.

    The one scene that I clearly felt that the anime did much better on than the manga was in episode 11 of season 2 where Nagate had to shoot down a bunch of Gauna in a fortifying position. I just felt the anime capture the tension so much better with the movement of the Gauna compare to seeing a bunch of panels of less Gauna.

    Since Gerald feels that the anime for Knights of Sidonia didn’t capture the artwork of Tsutomu Nihei that well, I’m curious about his opinion on the upcoming Berserk anime in July. From the trailer alone, we know there will be a great deal of CG. Kentarou Miura is steps higher than Nihei so it is going to be a greater challenge. It’s not being done by Polygon Pictures but by GEMBA and Millepense which haven’t done much.

  10. Team AWO,
    Keep up the great work! I’ve tried to listen to other anime podcasts after listening to yours for a couple of years, but none of the others that I’ve sampled have hooked me. For real—you folks have a great dynamic as a group and plenty of smart observations.

    Gerald,
    I only watched one episode of Knights of Sidonia—obviously it left me cold—and to me this type of animation “CG posing at traditional cel animation” lacks the strengths of either committed approach. (See also: Freedom & Expelled from Paradise.)
    I think that the frames are removed on purpose so that the animation doesn’t have the overly fluid CG approach and better matches the limited animation that people are used to in most anime. I may be wrong on that—it just feel like they are trying to mask the machine there. I might circle back to this anime since I like science fiction, especially hard sci-fi, but it’s difficult for me to enjoy animation…when I don’t like the actual animation. (If I want great sci-fi concepts, I’m can always read Greg Egan.)

    And THANK YOU for recommending both Air Master and Shoot Fighter Tekken in some older AWO episodes. Those have expressive animation (albeit limited) and some really, really, really great fight choreography. Too bad they don’t have the in-betweening and atmospheric background paintings of vintage OAVs, but in some ways, Air Master and Shoot Fighter Tekken exceed those VHS treasures.

    Daryl,
    So how about spearheading the Violence Jack & Baoh & Grappler Baki blu-ray Kickstarter campaigns? I’ll put money down on each.

    (P.S. You mentioned being in the New York area in May. You probably know this already, but Ring of Honor is here on the 14th with New Japan. I think Okada is still on the card—he’s a current favorite of mine alongside Zack Sabre Jr., Sami Callihan, Charlotte, Tanahashi, and Samoa Joe.)

    • I may not be Daryl, but, while I probably wouldn’t contribute to a BD Kickstarter for either show*, I’d throw obscene amounts of money at a Kickstarter to get both the Violence Jack and Grappler Baki manga series published in English in their entirety.

      *VJ could definitely be improved with a BD transfer, but I don’t know how much it’d help the Grappler Baki anime, considering that its an early digipaint show. Unless you’re talking about that OVA from the early ’90s.

      [All of these comments go into moderation because you’re leaving a phony email address. –Daryl]

  11. Knights of Sidonia is one of my favorite shows (if only for the lack of other deep space shows), but I thought the anime kept to the manga scene for scene for the most part; some other commenter pointed out a few differences, but it’s nothing extremely significant as they didn’t really add any fanservice/sitcom scenes. However, between the manga reader and the anime watcher the main discrepancy that came to mind was that when reading the manga you can somewhat control the pacing. If you don’t like a scene you just skim through it faster, but the scenes you like will capture more of your attention. Anime, however, the pacing is completely dictated for you, so the sitcom scenes that Gerald doesn’t like stick in your mind more because you have to sit through them.

    Great review, sorry for any typos, the mobile site reply box is black text on dark grey so it’s hard to read.

  12. Hurm, was hoping that picture of Raoh would be here but no one has requested it? I need to finish Legends of the Dark King, as it was pretty good for the 8 or so episodes I watched on Hulu. As for Sidonia, I mostly agree with Gerald. I watched the first season last September and was a bit underwhelmed by the many unexplored plot points (which may be addressed in the manga?) and everything that wasn’t action/fight scenes. I was also suffering from a kidney infection, so maybe that made it easier to consume/drift off in certain places (and possibly why the 2nd season has proved more challenging to finish). Searching out the manga at some point then.

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