Posts with the “fanservice” tag

3 Episode Taste Test: Strike Witches 2

Where have all the young men gone? Sure there are the military men, barely old enough to hold a meaningful rank, but the Strike Witches 2 universe is entirely bereft of any young boys. Perhaps ages six through sixteen are spent in secret training to reduce the number of assaults due to the girls' complete lack of clothing below the waist. Or perhaps the Neuroi, the opaque alien aggressors, are an analogy of male puberty. Regardless, the opening three episodes of this second season start out much as the first and it isn't until the cringeworthy third episode that the uncomfortableness of watching young girls with no lower clothing on suffering through compromising situations sets in. The change of studio from the beleaguered GONZO to AIC Spirits hasn't changed the aesthetics, but it has reduced the crotch shots and increased the piercing light of censorship. Otherwise, for better or worse, the premise and execution are left entirely in tact.

a zero-sum series, each shred of development evaporates as soon as the characters visit a bath

After the events of the first season, the Neuroi were pushed out of Britannia and into Romagna, however as a communication channel was about to be opened with the now humanoid enemy, another force descended to Earth, consuming the all in their path. City after city is razed in this new offensive and entire squadrons of Strike Witches are decimated with the ferocity and volume of attacks. Yoshika meanwhile has graduated from school and is considering what to do next when word of an attack involving her comrade Lynne comes over the radio. The desire to protect her friends is too great, so it is that the 501st reforms to combat this renewed threat.

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3 Episode Taste Test: High School of the Dead

There's definitely a space between "High" and "School" so why High School of the Dead dropped it for the canonical abbreviation H.O.T.D. is unknown but this is just one of many oddities the first three episodes of the zombies-invade-Japan series contains. It plunders recent genre movies with gay abandon but still feels unique; it lays on the gratuitous - blood, breasts and banter - but never feels protracted or beyond the pale; it has a punk rock opening and ending themes but steers clear of banshee-strangling or ALI PROJECT dirge. What the series so ably does is nail the necessities and leave everything else to sort themselves out: characters are stereotypical and bland, the storyline hackneyed, but damned if it doesn't fire full bore with the action while keeping the pace quick and letting the tension build.

carnage, combat and cleavage blend together into a heady cocktail that stimulates all the right areas of the lizard brain

It is another uneventful day at Fumiji High School: Takashi is loafing about, Saya is berating him, Rei is in class, and no one has any idea of the apocalypse unfolding around them. A single zombie inadvertently bites and kills a teacher at the school gate and from there, panic and terror spread until the entire school is either the walking dead or in hiding. Takashi and Rei meet up with other survivors including the kendo club's champion, a firearms enthusiast and the ditsy school nurse; together they manage to procure a bus and escape from the school, but with the city in ruins and discontent brewing in the group there is the important question of whether they will ever see their families again. If they want to survive they'll need to put aside whatever quibbles they have with each other and find a way to exist in the now ruined world.

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Ichiban Ushiro no Daimaou (The Demon King in the Back Row)

Takashi Watanabe obviously woke up one morning, head still groggy from a night of drink, drugs and debauchery, one hand clutching a napkin with a list scrawled on it - ninjas, cyborgs, magic, gods, dragons, breasts - and in the other a production contract, sloppily signed by himself. There is no way else a series as bonkers as Ichiban Ushiro no Daimou could have been born except from some ill-informed bet or dare. Cramming this amount of content into twelve episodes means dispensing with a consistent art-style, rounded characters and coherent storytelling; that the series hangs together at all depends entirely on the infectious enthusiasm and deviant pleasure of wondering where the story could possibly go next.

a show that Michael Bay would create if he were a long time anime fan, slightly deranged and on the breadline
Despite Akuto Sai's desire to become a High Priest - a peerless champion for good - his Constant Magick Academy aptitude test predicts he will become a fearsome Demon King. Panic amongst the student population ensues and although Akuto remains defiant, forces begin to align themselves both for and against his ascension. Ancient clans such as the samurai Hattori and black magic Etou become involved, just as the ruling government sends an android to keep watch; Akuto isn't alone however, his childhood friend Keena and spirited minion Hiroshi stand by him, doubly so when the fearsome dragon and loyal servant of the Demon King Peterhausen is unearthed. Akuto's plan to remake the system of gods and scriptures may yet come to pass, though maybe not with him as the soldier of justice he envisioned.

Please note: the remainder of this post contains images of nudity, if you are offended by these or are otherwise unable to view these images within your municipality due to laws or moral obligations, please do not proceed.

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3 Episode Taste Test: Ikkitousen - Xtreme Xecutor

Watching the latest series of Ikkitousen, with the absurd subtitle of Xtreme Xecutor, is like viewing a relic of the past. Series focused on both fighting and fanservice have long since surpassed it in terms of what can be offered: whether that's titillation or solid action, the first three episodes contain much of what characterised the first three series. Primarily an adaptation of the Romance of the Three Kingdoms epic (of which there is a self-titled, more straight faced series airing within the same season) with some lacklustre combat and ludicrously proportioned girls losing their clothing at the slightest opportunity. Next to nothing has changed from the preceding series, so like slipping into an old set of clothes, there is comfort in the familiar but also lamentation at their threadbare state.

this is a series concerned with curvaceous ladies and their disrobing antics

Mostly ignoring the resolute waste of time that was Great Guardians, the schools are enjoying a time of relative peace after the battle which took place at the climax of Dragon Destiny. That is until a spunky young lass appears attempting to make trouble for some fatal grievance her brother-cum-guardian suffered at the hand of the nefarious Sousou. After a selection of tepid duels, some involving baked goods, she is put in her place and only barely manages to escape; she is picked up by Ryuubei stumbling blindly in the rain and taken to Seito. The girl, Bachou, begs to be trained at the school until a misguided excursion with Ryuubei leads to an intervention by the interminably ditsy Hakufu. Now begging to be trained by Hakufu, an imperial decree is delivered with word of a new fighting tournament, issued by someone claiming to be the Emperor Kentei.

Please note: the remainder of this post contains images of nudity, if you are offended by these or are otherwise unable to view these images within your municipality due to laws or moral obligations, please do not proceed.

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3 Episode Taste Test: Ladies versus Butlers

With a premise reminiscent of My-Otome and championing the current trend of snotty faux-aristocrats, Ladies versus Butlers starts as it intends to continue: copious, pointless fanservice. The frantic first episode is chase across palatial school grounds which sees girls of an acutely fair disposition faint at the very sight of a teenage boy with unkempt hair and a scar, compounded by a bevy of situations which disrobe or otherwise strip the numerous busty schoolgirls of their pride and decency. The opening episodes cater to a wide variety of deviances and with many names from Kanokon on this production, the series is sure to be replete with many more.

one the most flagrant examples of the arrogant but ditsy archetype so favoured by lazy writers

Akiharu Hino, for reasons not yet disclosed, recently transferred to the prestigious Hakureiryou school which educates both upcoming maids and butlers as well as upper class ladies (and one gentleman) on matters such as etiquette and intense loafing. After his disastrous introduction to the snooty Selnia Flameheart and a brief exposure to a number of the madcap student body of the school, he runs into Tomomi Saikyo, a childhood friend he had hoped to have left in his past. Remembering her only as scheming and devious, her presence in the school is bizarre but not as much as Akiharu's misadventures during his tenure at the most bizarre of campuses.

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