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Apr 122017
 

If you thought Sailor Moon was a cool anime series, then I have no doubt that you’ll find Glitter Force (2015-2016) just as interesting. This Netflix original series is about five middle school girls who gain superpowers from Glitter Charms and protect the world from the evil Emperor Nogo and his forces.

The heroes are the optimistic but clumsy leader Emily as Glitter Lucky, the tough jokester Kelsey as Glitter Sunny, the shy artist Lily as Glitter Peace, the loyal athlete April as Glitter Spring, and the highly intelligent Chloe as Glitter Breeze. Together these five friends are the Glitter Force. The team members are introduced one at a time per episode but at least that’s not spread too far apart like some shows do, like Sailor Moon and Sgt. Frog for example.

Of course every superhero team should have a guide. The guide for the Glitter Force is Candy, a pixie from the magical kingdom of Jubiland. She’s cute and hyperactive, especially when it comes to her ears being styled like hair buns.

I met Debi Derryberry, the voice of Candy, at Anime Festival Orlando 2013.

There’s also Candy’s older brother Pop. He’s not featured as frequently, which is too bad since he’s more vigilant than Candy and can transform into different things.

I met Todd Haberkorn, the voice of Pop, at MegaCon 2012.

Now we get to the villains. Hailing from the Shadow Realm, four fairytale based creatures use their power to absorb negative energy from innocent bystanders in order to revive Emperor Nogo. The first is Ulric the wolf who is very cunning and based on the Big Bad Wolf.

Brute is a troll that prefers to use brute strength over intelligence. Of course trolls are very common in both fairytales and the fantasy genre.

Third is a wicked witch named Brooha that uses magical contraptions and can clone herself easily. She’s based on different fairytale witches.

Then we have Rascal the jester. Despite his annoying voice, he’s pretty creative. He fights with magical playing cards and has a playful, but sadistic persona. He wasn’t featured in the series very much but I like his style, for a villain.

When the villains decide to attack and gather negative energy, only one of them goes to Earth at a time. Then he/she creates a monster out of a random object called a Buffoon, which always has a giant body and a clown face. Whenever the Glitter Force defeats it, a Glitter Charm appears and gets added to their arsenal.

Image result for glitter force

This was an interesting series for its superhero action that’s on the level of Power Rangers. At the end of each episode, there’s a song and dance number by the Glitter Force. The songs are pretty good and they only change after four episodes. If you are a Sailor Moon fan, I would suggest giving this show a try.

Mar 012017
 

Based on the title alone, The Seven Deadly Sins (2014-2016) does sound like a show about evildoers with a story plot similar to the movie Se7en. However, that’s not what it is at all. The Seven Deadly Sins are actually a group of heroic immortal knights in the region of Britannia until they disbanded after being wrongfully accused of plotting to overthrow the Liones Kingdom.

In actuality, it was another group of knights called the Holy Knights that took over and captured the king. So the king’s daughter Princess Elizabeth goes in search of the seven deadly sins in hopes of reuniting them to save her kingdom.

The first sin she finds is the leader Meliodas the sin of Wrath. Though he has the appearance of a child, Meliodas is very powerful. He has a comedic side also, which is mainly shown when he freely touches Elizabeth inappropriately without thinking. Oddly, Elizabeth doesn’t seem to mind because she never reacts to it.

The real comic relief comes from Meliodas’s companion Hawk the talking pig. He always reacts to Meliodas’s perverted ways and yells whenever anyone jokes about eating a pig product.

I met Christina Vee, who was the voice of Hawk, at Anime Festival Orlando 2011.

As the three of them travel together in a tavern that’s strapped onto a giant green pig, which is really nifty, more deadly sins are found like Ban the sin of Greed. He’s strong and has a laid back attitude, especially when it comes to stealing people’s clothes. However, Ban is very devoted for those he cares about.

Diane the sin of Envy is a giant girl who is in love with Meliodas, though he’s devoted to Elizabeth. I can see Diane being out of place being the only giant of the team, but she is very much an equal member as far as the other sins are concerned.

King the sin of Sloth is a fairy king that flies with a comfy pillow, which is appropriate. King isn’t lazy though. He’s in love with Diane, but their relationship is complicated because of Diane’s feelings for Meliodas.

It isn’t until much later in the series when the remaining sins are found. Gowther the sin of Lust is book smart but struggles to understand emotions. The best way Gowther does is by studying other people’s actions on how emotions work.

Lastly there’s Merlin the sin of Gluttony. That’s right, it’s Merlin from Camelot. Though shockingly, Merlin is a woman and an attractive one at that. She didn’t participate in the series until much later, but it would’ve helped if Merlin had appeared sooner.

This was an interesting Anime series overall. I’m sure you might be thinking that there were supposed to be seven sins but only six were featured. It’s true that one sin was still unaccounted for, Pride. I wonder who that could be.

Feb 152017
 

If you thought you’ve seen every version of The Wizard of Oz, think again. The Wonderful Galaxy of Oz takes a sci-fi turn on the old classic.

Due to a natural occurrence that happens once every 1000 years, noble Dorothy and her dog Toto get swept into a black hole, which takes them to Oz in another galaxy. It’s also neat that Dorothy’s home planet is called New Kansas.

Instead of ruby slippers, Dorothy wears a balloon suit, which is a special kind of safety suit. Secondly, her Aunt Em gave it to her, not the Good Witch of the North. Come to think of it, the Good Witch of the North doesn’t even appear in this version.

Image result for the wonderful galaxy of oz Gloomhilda

Apparently, representing the Tin Man is a robot named Chopper, who works for Dorothy’s family. He goes along to Oz as well. I can’t help but think that his mannerisms remind me of C-3PO from Star Wars.

Upon arrival, Dorothy and Chopper meet their other allies. First is Plantman, who represents the Scarecrow. He has a laid back persona, but can sometimes come off insensitive. Of course that’s all thanks to him not having a brain, so he doesn’t really know any better.

Next is the Cowardly Lion. It turns out that there’s a whole tribe of lions, who are all equally cowardly. The only one who sticks around is their leader Lionman. It’s funny how all of the lions run off all at once. Some of them even shouted, “Run away!”

They all soon make it to the Wizard of Oz, who is actually a scientist named Dr. Oz. (No, not the Dr. Oz with the medical talk show.) Before meeting him, it’s revealed that he has a son, Mosey. You might assume that the story ends here but it doesn’t. The real adventure is only beginning.

As for villains, the main enemy is the evil witch Gloomhilda. At first I thought she represented the Wicked Witch of the West. It turns out that Gloomhilda is her daughter that’s just taking orders.

The actual Wicked Witch of the West is a very creepy entity with a sinister persona. She wears a red cloak to hide her face, which certainly makes her the creepiest version of the witch I have ever seen.

This was an interesting movie version of The Wizard of Oz. It was real adventurous as well as humorous. What stands out most with the humor is Gloomhilda’s General Sludge. He’s not only goofy. Sludge sounds real similar to Pee-Wee Herman. You got to love it.

Nov 162016
 

Moeyo Ken: The Complete Series (2005-2006) takes place in an era where monsters can live in harmony with humans in the city of Kyoto, as long as they are licensed. If there’s an unlicensed monster running loose, an all-female fighting force called the Mobile Shinsengumi capture those beasts in order to protect Kyoto and its citizens.

The team members include Yuko Kondo the sword master, Toshie Hijikata the sharpshooter, and Kaoru Okita who uses different types of weapons along with little helpers called the Shikigami to help out in battle.

Image result for Moeyo Ken Characters Nekomaru

When not fighting unlicensed monsters the Mobile Shinsengumi have other misadventures with Ryunosuke, who is the long lost son of their superior, Oryo. He does what he can to help out the team, even though he’s not much of a fighter.

Also staying with the team is Nekomaru, a monster cat with a great sense of humor and a huge appetite. Don’t worry, he is licensed. Nekomaru always cowers when there’s trouble, but is very noble when it comes to saving lives. He can magically transfer one of his nine lives in order restore a dead person to life. One thing I can’t help but notice is Nekomaru’s voice. It sounds similar to Paul Lynde.

The main villains are the Tsubame Group, consisting of Miki Saotome who is a mean girl, Ukon Tanaka who is handsome and fearless, and Sakon who likes to use a bazooka. They intend to overthrow the government about the monster rights, which makes them a nuisance to the Mobile Shinsengumi.

This was an interesting Anime series. It has both great action and humor. There’s no monster these ladies can’t handle, no matter how perverse some of them are.

Sep 142016
 

Sometimes when I go DVD shopping, I find a group of DVDs that are very cheap, which look like a good deal. They’re usually old movies I never heard of before, or a series of cartoons from as early as the 1930s. On a rare occasion I find old Anime features that look interesting. One such feature is Solar Adventure.

The story line is a little hard to follow, but here’s what I can make from it. The country is divided into two zones, the North and the South, and the two sides are always at war with each other. The North wants to live under communism and the South doesn’t. After the way some of the North soldiers beat on a couple of kids, you can tell that they mean business.

The main focus is on a group of young students and their teacher on a nature study field trip, caught in the middle of things. Oddly, none of their names are mentioned, which makes it hard to identify the heroes.

Originally, this movie is featured in live action, but then goes to Anime without notice when a couple of alien children arrive along with a group of spaceships that transform into robots.

That’s right. These robots are like Transformers, but have to be piloted using emotional wavelengths. I’m not kidding. These robots look like they were taken straight from The Transformers animated series from the 80s. It’s hard to see past that.

The main villain is Siporta the space conqueror. He has teamed up with the northern communists as a way to take over the universe. Siporta may only be a one-dimensional villain, but at least his name is revealed unlike the other characters.

The action is nothing more than what you would find in a war movie, even with the robots, which is unfortunate.

This wasn’t a bad movie. The music was good, along with its level of adventure. As a war movie, it’s okay, but I wouldn’t recommend it. Much of the dialogue is very blunt and the pacing is so slow that it makes the feature feel longer than it really is. On the plus side, it’s always interesting to explore Anime titles. You never know if you’ll find a gem among them.