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Apr 292015
 

Based on the Nintendo DS game, Sands of Destruction: The Complete Series (2008-2009) is about a post-apocalyptic world where the seas have become sand and humans are slaves to beast men. I like the idea of talking animals co-existing with human beings, but some of them can be pretty brutal at times.

The heroes are a group of travelers called the World Destruction Committee. Leading the pack is Morte a young warrior with a troubled past. She feels that the only way to save the world is to destroy it and she has the one tool that can make it happen. It’s a black sphere called the destruct code.

Her companion is Kyrie. Though he is cowardly and doesn’t know how to fight, Kyrie loves to cook and wishes for a better world where humans and beast men can live in harmony. In a way, he’s a good influence on Morte. Of course, she’ll never admit it.

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

 

Then we have Taupy the bounty hunter. He’s a talking dwarf bear that always ends most of his sentences with “Kuma”, no matter the subject. For some reason, Taupy doesn’t like to be called a bear, even though he obviously looks like one.

Together the World Destruction Committee has faced many dangers and enemies. On occasion they meet up with Agan. He’s a smuggler that delivers all kinds of goods with his ship, as long as the price is right. Agan does seem trustworthy and glad to help out when Morte, Kyrie, and Taupy are around.

The main enemies the World Destruction Committee faces are the World Salvation Committee, which only consists of two members. The first is Naja, who is an intellectual half-man half-beast. I don’t see how he is half beast, since he looks really human.

The other is Rhi’a, who is a pretty dragon girl with a short temper. She’s quick to use brute force over words when enraged. I admit that Rhi’a is a cool fighter, especially when she reveals her dragon wings, tail, and horns.

I met Trina Nishimura, the voice of Rhi’a, at MegaCon 2011.

This was a good Anime series. It’s unlike most that I’ve seen, especially since I never played the video game, but still contains much of the action and humor that I find enjoyable.

Mar 252015
 

Here’s an interesting Anime series. .hack/Quantum OVA (2010-2011) is about three friends Asumi, Iori, and Eri, who enjoy playing an online fantasy game simply called The World.

I met Trina Nishimura, the voice of Asumi/Sakuya at MegaCon 2010.

The World contains plenty of action and adventure as well as some cool creatures like giant dragons. While inside, the three friends go by the names, Sakuya, Tobias, and Mary as characters. However, the story doesn’t just take place there. It goes back and forth from The World and reality.

Among the characters in The World is Hermit the talking cat. He has a twig that can digitize anything it touches. Somehow it doesn’t seem to be a common weapon that gamers would use.

During a quest, something goes horribly wrong. The heroes wind up in a dark creepy place as though the game was hacked. Before getting the chance to log out, Eri ends up in a coma. The same thing has happened to other gamers in the past, based on Asumi and Iori’s research. So it’s up to them to find out what’s going on with the network in order to save their friend. Apparently, it’s more than they bargained for.

Helping them out is an investigator, who also plays the game. Her character is named Shamrock, but her real name is not revealed.

I’ll admit that the title seems a little forced. .hack/Quantum OVA was a good three-episode series. In case you were wondering, the story line was set to be that short, not cancelled unexpectedly.

Jan 072015
 

Chrome Shelled Regios: The Complete Series (2009-2010) takes place in a post-apocalyptic Earth that’s overrun by giant monsters called contaminoids. Humanity’s only defenses are students from the Academy City of Zuellni, who participate in the military arts. They all have cool swords with DITE power, which are voice activated with the word, “Restoration”.

Of course these contaminoids are not easy to kill. No matter how much damage anyone dishes out, the contaminoids reassemble and they never stop attacking. What does it take to kill those beasts?

There are quite a few platoons at Zuellni, but the main focus is on the 17th platoon. Leading the team is Nina Antalk. She’s strong willed, but insecure when it comes to losing training competitions against other platoons.

I met Brina Palencia, who was the voice of Nina, at MegaCon 2012.

Other members include Harley the DITE mechanic, Sharnid the sharpshooter, and Felli who has psychokinesis.

With the 17th platoon one member short, they find a replacement, but an unlikely one. He is Layfon Alseif. Now Layfon was originally registered for general studies, but has amazing skill and strength worthy of military arts. Yet Layfon doesn’t want to join.

I had also met Todd Haberkorn, the voice of Leyfon, at MegaCon 2012.

However, Layfon is forced to because the safety of the city is a bigger priority, according to Kalian, who is head of the student counsel and Felli’s older brother. At least Nina has a complete platoon now.

Layfon tries to make the most of his situation. On top of that, Layfon has girl trouble. Like Tskune Aono from Rosario Vampire, several girls like him and he can’t focus on just one. It usually ends up with Felli kicking Layfon in the shin.

Another group of students often featured are Mifi an aspiring journalist and her two best friends, Naruki an aspiring police officer and Mayshen an aspiring baker.

I met Brittney Karbowski, the voice of Mifi, at Holiday Matsuri 2011.

Mayshen is shy, but takes a real liking to Layfon after he saves her life when she was caught in the crossfire of a student spat. Yes, she is one of the girls Layfon has to choose from.

Apparently, Layfon has a girlfriend that lives back in his hometown of Glendon. She is Leerin Marfes, who often writes to Layfon. For some odd reason, her good friend Synola is obsessed with grabbing Leerin’s chest. Now what’s up with that?

I met Colleen Clinkenbeard, who was the voice of Leerin, at MegaCon 2011.

This was a good Anime series with plenty of action and humor. It’s also interesting to know that many of the voice actors from XXXholic, Soul Eater, and Rosario Vampire, who I have met at quite a few different conventions, are featured on this show.

Other voice actors I have met from this series are Trina Nishimura at MegaCon 2011, who played 5th platoon member Shante Laite, Jamie Marchi, who was police officer Naruki Gelni (also at MegaCon 2011), and Kara Edwards at MetroCon 2011, who played Heaven’s Blade Wielder Cauntia Valmon Farnes.

 

Dec 102014
 

One of the newest, not to mention funniest, Christmas specials I have seen this year is How Murray Saved Christmas. In a town called Stinky Cigars, resides every holiday icon ever celebrated.

 

They include April Fool a nutty individual, the groundhog that talks like Woody Allen, some old presidents, Christopher Columbus, and the Easter Bunny that’s a rap star. Can you believe it?

Then we have the shops with some funny names like Get Stinky Fitness Center, Out of my Gourd Candle Shop, and Salvador’s Dollies. That is so clever.

Of course the real focus of the story is Murray Wiener (voice of Jerry Stiller), who is a bitter man that runs a diner. It’s almost Christmas and Santa gets a concussion. The inventive Edison Elf (voice of Sean Hayes) gathers everyone together, but the only one who can substitute for Santa is Murray. After some extra convincing, Murray agrees to the task. Surprisingly, he doesn’t even know the names of the reindeer.

Eventually the reason behind Murray’s grouchiness is revealed and it’s something I wouldn’t have seen coming.

It is odd that Santa isn’t so nice to his elves. They are underpaid with no health benefits. Santa even charges them for cocoa when it should be free for the worker elves. I also noticed that Mrs. Claus isn’t around. What could’ve happened to her?

Another interesting character is the town doctor, Doc Holiday (voice of Jason Alexander). He can identify people’s ailments, but never really cured anyone. The Doc sure loves to sing and dance though, despite that it annoys everyone.

At MegaCon 2013, I met Billy West who does various voice roles.

This was definitely a good Christmas special to add to my list of favorites. Not only is it a musical, everyone often speaks in rhyme. I haven’t heard that much rhyming in an animated feature since the old Dr. Seuss specials.