[Update] What happened and why I’m still alive

Yes, I disappeared.

There really is no other way to put it. To be honest, I wanted to write a bit more, but certain things happened in real life, and to make a long story short, someone very close to my heart died as a result of end stage cancer. It was a sudden diagnosis, and her course was just as swift — lasting only two-and-a-half months from diagnosis to the time that she passed away. Since then — and even up until now — I’ve been living in a strange, surreal world that feels off-kilter. Like something is missing, and I can’t put a finger on the sort of emotions I’m feeling.

I picked up a rather prophetic book before all of this happened: Haruki Murakami’s “Men without Women”. It’s ironic, looking back at it, how I purchase that book simply because I admire the author. Little did I know that I would become one of the characters in the very same novel. Regardless, I knew I had to read the book, and true enough, I’ve found some semblance of clarification in the sort of emotions I’m feeling. But the emptiness remains, and probably will remain for a while.

Maybe I’m depressed. That wouldn’t be surprising. But then I felt the need to write. I tried picking up a journal and I’m currently working on it, but then I felt the need to get back into watching anime. Probably not as actively as I used to — striving to inform readers about the must-sees of the season — rather, something a bit more reflective and “me-centric”.

Hence, I decided to pick up watching March comes in like a Lion again. I feel like there’s something in the series that I can relate to more earnestly, given I’ve always looked at the series with a clinical eye. I see patients with depression on a day-to-day basis, so it’s easy for me to look at characters like Rei as a clinical case. But there’s something disingenuous about looking at the show this way — and as much as I know I’ve said I loved the production, I feel the urge to watch it again, if only to find solace in what it means to actually nurse an emotional scar.

This is a deeply personal entry, and pray I ask you humor a sad individual like me who has found himself caught in a quagmire of sorts. But I think this is the first step towards healing. Of course, I will interject a couple lost in translations and editorials as I go, but my focus will be to look at March comes in like a Lion and reflect on how its morals speak to me on a deeper, personal level.

So with all that said, guess that means: I’m back.

[Update] Restoring order…



I know I said previously that I was now “free”, and that I’d have more time to write stuff… but then I finally returned home from the UK and found my internet disconnected at home and have since spent the last 2 or 3 weeks fighting over customer service to get decent internet back whilst trying to figure out a way to finish the remaining anime that was left “stock piled” over the last few weeks.

Man, it was hectic.

Anyway, good news is that I’ve finally updated myself with animu and even had the added bonus of (finally) getting my college letter, which states that I was awarded my masters with distinction. Naise. Now it’s time for me to throw it into my CV and shoot for that scholarship in Japan I’ve always wanted. Let’s hope that goes without a hitch.

So yeah, it’s back to anime for me, yey! Expect a season end wrap up (as usual) in a bit, and after that a couple random articles running up to the previews for this incoming Fall 2017 season. See ya!

[Update] Finally free…


Okay, so I disappeared this past week because I was preparing for my final oral viva… and it’s finally over!

God, I’m free. I’m a free man again. My second life as a post graduate student is finally over.

So yeah, just a couple plans. I wasn’t expecting Owarimonogatari (ge) to come out as a digest of three episodes, so I’ll probably go through them part-by-part alongside my episodic re-reviews of owarimonogatari (sho). That also means I’m thinking whether or not I’ll just combine the missing weeks in review, do a mid-season run down, and then just focus on the monogatari reviews.

Yeah, I might just do that.

Anyway, today is celebration day. I have a 6-pack of Tatcher’s and a barbecue raring to go, so don’t mind me, I’m just enjoying my life right now.


See you guys soon.

[update] I’m baaaaack!!


Title of this post pretty much says it all. Give or take a few other things I have to sort out for my dissertation, at least the bulk of the writing is over and done with, and I’ve already submitted whatever is worth 10,000 words of a grade over to the university.

It’s like someone pulled out a huuuuuge thorn out of my side.

That said, what’s left in the wake is a slew of unfinished anime that’s 5-6 episodes deep per show. What that means is that I’ve had to put my foot down and slash out shows I couldn’t really half-ass myself to trudge through for the sake of finishing, the result being four-or-so shows hitting the bucket. And for some reason, I don’t really feel like it was a waste.

Heck, I don’t even know what’s showing yet this season, so I have A LOT of catching up to do. Chances are, I’ll make a Spring 2017 end season ranking list for the sake of completion, but I don’t think I’ll be able to make any previews for summer (not as if they mean anything at this point anymore), and I might not even do any weekly reviews for the time being. Instead, I’ll focus on some select articles on topics I’ve shelved since who knows when. Plus, if anything, I plan on focusing on doing re-watch reviews on the Monogatari Series to compliment the currently airing continuation to Owarimonogatari (okay, so I DID have an idea of what shows are showing this season). Plus, I watched a couple anime movies during my hiatus (hey, can you blame me?) because, hey I can.

So yeah, I’m kinda excited to get back to writing. LET’S DO THIS!!!

[Update] Not so dead (yet)


Ack, God… This was a really tiring two weeks for me.

So I was evicted from my flat (not my doing, honest), and I only just moved in to my new flat (much, much nicer), so I’ve pretty much spent the past two weeks moving back and forth between residences getting all my stuff in order. This was on top of the fact that I was appointed to be Senior House Resident for the current flat, and the residents I will be looking over are pre-sessional Chinese students who are here for the summer to learn English.

In a nutshell, I’ve been spending much of my time running around like a headless chicken whilst getting random phone calls from Chinese people who, for reasons beyond even their control, sound like they’re just begging to start a fight with me. That said, I haven’t watched ANY animu for the past two weeks, nor have I had time to focus on writing my dissertation, which is due in less than a month.

I am so f**ked.

That and the fact that my experiments aren’t really turning out the way they should, meaning I’m gonna have to throw in a bunch of negative data in my thesis and just use a load of BS to justify everything I did over the term. Dear God, here’s hoping I can fake it till I make it.

So yeah, I guess I’m going to come out and say that I won’t be doing any weekly reviews until the season is up, or at least until I’ve written what I have to write for my dissertation. But that, of course, won’t stop me from writing some editorials every now and then — when that does happen, it means my brain is dying and I’m looking for an outlet to maintain my sanity.

Anyway, pray for me guys. I want to keep writing, but just… damn. I wish August would come soon with everything neatly sorted. But till then, I guess I have to trudge through this shitfest for now. Wish me luck.

Anniversary Update!


Holy crap, it’s already been one year…

Anima & Anime is one year old. 😮

To be honest, I got into blogging as a sideline to my main article duties in CrunchyRoll before being ingloriously sacked thanks to restructuring within the Newsletter. But the word “restructuring” is probably a euphemism for something more unpleasant. The truth is that the Newsletter was a remnant of the website’s more user-centric days, given that I had been around since its conception as a site moderator.

But yeah, I kinda felt the whole need for the Newsletter was fading away, and probably that’s why I decided to pour out my anime frustrations into my own personal website. I know I don’t post as often as I should, but many people keep telling me that blogging really is a matter of your own personal capacity. Unless you’re seriously trying to monetize it, you don’t necessarily have to pull out content every single day.

And so I’m not really that surprised that my year-end stats aren’t exactly anything to brag about. But here they are, anyway: Continue reading

I’m baaaack!


Quick update:

  • Will post thoughts based on show titles till the end of the season, just so that I can play catch-up without confusing myself in the process.
  • Finished Zelda: Breath of the Wild
  • More editorials. Promise.
  • Now playing I am Setsuna
  • And more Lost in Translation.
  • And maybe a movie review.


Short Vacation


Okay, I’m gonna be honest. You won’t see me posting anything for a while. The picture above is pretty much my excuse.

To be clear, I fell out of video gaming since the days of the Playstation 2, and I’ve only ever had casual fare with the PS Vita (yes, that’s kinda “casual” for me), and whatever fremium games there are on iOS (iDOLM@STER… curse you and your limited-time events!).

But as far as console gaming is concerned, the PS2 was the last one I purchased up front. I started with the NES and have been pretty much a low-key Nintendo fan up to the N64. I loved the Gamecube, but I skipped it in favor of the PS2, and even the Wii was just a “let me visit your house to play” kinda thing, since I wasn’t really sold on the whole motion-control concept.

But when it comes to Zelda, damn where do I begin. I first played Ocarina of time before trying out (but not finishing) Majora’s Mask (a bit meh), then A Link to the Past (epic), Windwaker (so much fun), and then the first two Zelda’s: the original Legend of Zelda and the Adventures of Link. I also remember playing Link’s awakening on the Gameboy Color (called Zelda DX in Japan), but don’t recall finishing it because I was playing a Japanese cart at the time (and I didn’t know that much Japanese apart from the occasional Kana). But suffice it to know that Breath of the Wild was enough reason to rekindle my interest in console gaming — and all the more since the Switch was marketed in a way to sort of “call back” the lost Nintendo kiddies. And Jesus Christ tap-dancing on a pogo stick, did it work.

So yeah, why am I talking about this? Well, I’m pretty much gonna lay low for a while, but I still hope to bring out some very concise “thoughts”, but very unlikely to be a side A/B thing like I’ve been doing for the Majority of this season. But don’t worry, this will only last for March, I believe. Thereafter, things will slowly get back to normal… if Zelda permits. Continue reading

[Rant] Internet Down!

Dagashi Kashi.gif

Please bear with me. There’s a backstory to this whole escapade that kinda annoyed me more than just not being able to post content… even though I had a bunch of stuff I was just itching to share.

So yeah, it was Monday and my flatmates were texting on our WhatsApp group around lunchtime that the internet was down, and that some of them were agonizing over the fact that they needed it to do work in the evening, yada-yada. They basically started asking who they should contact, and the senior house resident gives them some info on how to go about reporting the incident, given he can’t do it himself since he’s working part time at a pizza joint to earn for his tuition.

And so I make it through the rest of the day and come home at around six in the evening only to find no internet. I asked around if anyone called IT — apparently, no one did.

Okay, let me just stop for a moment to kinda parse this situation together. The internet goes down in a shared apartment around lunch time. People are told to contact IT for support to resolve the issue. Because, you know, internet is like a basic need now. Six hours later… no one bothered to call IT? Continue reading

Turning 30 and still watching animu


I’m pretty sure someone’s given you that look before, and it was probably followed up by something along the lines of really, you still watch cartoons?

The left half of my brain starts churning up arguments like cartoons ≠ animé, while my right half starts contemplating on the merits of Japanese animation as a unique medium of expression — only for me to end up responding with a rather underwhelming: yup.

I mean, there’s no denying it. Yes, I’m turning thirty. And yes, I still watch cartoons if that’s what you want to call it. There’s no point in analyzing the hermeneutics of animation with someone who thinks anything colorful and drawn is essentially a cartoon. But before you call me out as a pretentious Animé “supremacist” (if that is even a title), I’ll have you know that I actually DO enjoy watching western cartoons as well, although not as passionately or regularly as I would Japanese animation. Heck, I have cousins who work as animators in the United States, so any snide comments about the animation industry in general is tantamount to insulting them.

But really, I’m not here to argue about why people think Animé (or cartoons, whatever) are assumed to be made for younger audiences. And I’m not here to argue with people who assume I should be spending my time doing more “adult-like” things. To be honest, what I do with my spare time is no one’s effing business. But what’s really interesting, to me at least, is how I feel (personally) about watching anime now that I’m turning a decade older. Continue reading