Earthsea, Ursula K. Le Guin and anime’s quest into western fantasy

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Western fantasy and sci-fi literature has long proven influential for anime, and an early example, shortly after the glamour of Howl’s Moving Castle, was the less well-known Studio Ghibli effort Tales from Earthsea. The late, great Ursula K. Le Guin, who sadly passed away in January, had broken through to literary greatness […]

Review: Norn9

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Norn9 is a series of two halves, belying its otome game source material where, under any plot contrivances, the point is to woo males and form romantic relations. So often, these series act as straight-up adaptations, making for badly structured and poor plotted anime. The core conceit of 2016’s Norn9 […]

The princess and the portrayal: feminism and self-love in Miyazaki’s movies

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The set-ups of certain of Hayao Miyazaki’s Studio Ghibli films make you feel as though you’ve returned to Disney’s fairytales. In Howl’s Moving Castle, downtrodden hat maker Sophie has her Cinderella moment when she’s waltzed across the sky by Howl. And the enduring curse catalyst is flipped onto the male […]

Beside the seaside: top 5 aquatic anime

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We at the blog have been utterly charmed by the bright and restful Amanchu!, new girl in town Futaba echoing our quiet wonder as she experiences her new home by the sea. There, she meets Hikari Kohinata. With her arresting self-confidence and unrestrainably bonkers joy, Hikari has been diving off the […]

Seven Rules for Happiness: our anime take on Shigeru Mizuki’s wisdom

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Even after surviving World War II, beloved manga artist Shigeru Mizuki always kept his verve in both life and creativity. As you might expect, such a life left a wise imprint, but when he passed away last year at the age of 93, he left us with the lingering enchantment of […]