Flip Flappers – Episode 13 (Series Finale & Review)

Girls, be adventurous.

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We’ve come to the finish line in predictably bright, bombastic, heart-on-our-sleeves fashion. I’m looking forward to talking about it–but first, as is tradition, let’s start with a spoiler-free review for anyone interested in picking up this fascinating, flawed, heartwarming little series. I’ll let any newcomers know when to click away so they don’t have the finale spoiled for them. As for those of you joining me for our last round of analysis, feel free to scroll on down past those many words and dig on in.

Click here for the full post on Anime Evo!

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Glancing Upstream: Fall 2016 Retrospective and Review

It’s the most overworked time of the year~

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In the next couple weeks I’ll be hitting you with final Flip Flappers commentary, my Top 10 Anime of 2016, maybe a short essay or two, and then we turn around and start all over again with the winter premieres, including the much-anticipated return of Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju (and my lengthy commentary about it)! A blogger’s work is never done.

So you’d think that would mean I’d have kept my Fall retrospective thoughts short and sweet, right? Wrong! This season was a cornucopia of strong comedy, positive queer representation, diverse female leads, and geeky premises. And you know I can’t shut up about stuff like that. Hit the jump for too many words about too many shows.

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Flip Flappers – Episode 12: “Pure Howling”

In the words of another 2016 heroine: “Let’s make confessions and lose our shit!”

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In typically explosive, surreal, and dynamically animated fashion, Flip Flappers delivers a penultimate episode that puts a capstone on our main character arcs and gives us plenty of time next week to tie up the rest of the loose ends. While “Pure Howling” sometimes loses focus as it jerks from scene-to-scene, trying to weave multiple stories together very quickly, it more than makes up for any disjointedness with two beautifully staged and immensely satisfying emotional climaxes. Any week I get to write “MY HEART!” in my notes is a good one in my book.

Click here for the full post on Anime Evo!

Flip Flappers – Episode 11: “Pure Storage”

Mother knows best?

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For a show that began with so many abstractions and mysteries, Flip Flappers has developed into a remarkably tight narrative, answering questions, fulfilling foreshadowing, and continuing to strengthen its thematic through-lines and character arcs at every step. While I can’t say I’m as emotionally invested in the current arc as I was in previous ones, I don’t think there’s any question now that the storytellers know exactly what they’re doing and where they want to go. Bonus points, too, that this journey comes with an incredible view.

Click here for the full post on Anime Evo!

[12 Days of AniFem] ClassicaLoid & the Girls’ Day Out

If you hear any noise, it ain’t the boys.

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While I doubt I’ll have time to do the full 12 Days of Anime on my own here at JND, I am participating in the one being held over at Anime Feminist! Today I talk about one of my favorite episodes of the season: ClassicaLoid‘s silly, saucy, and joyfully inclusive “Girls’ Day Out.”

Click here for the full post on Anime Feminist!

The Nail That Sticks Up: Haikyu!! & the Power of Weirdos

Birds of a different feather flock together.

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You may have heard the somewhat gloomy Japanese proverb: “The nail that sticks up gets hammered down.” It works a lot like the English idiom “don’t rock the boat,” and can read like a threat against individuality. While it often gets over-used by us folks in the west as a way to (negatively and reductively) explain Japan’s cultural tendency to value the group over the individual, it’s still a useful phrase because it neatly summarizes the major downside of collectivism: If you don’t fit the mold, then you’re no longer welcome.

Haikyu!! is a show about volleyball. It’s a show about persistence and passion. It’s a show about friendship and teamwork. And now, after finishing its third season, we can add something else to that list. Haikyu is a show about defending the nails that stick up.

Here there be spoilers: Discussion about the finale for Haikyu Season 3 (Karasuno Vs. Shiratorizawa) below the jump.

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Flip Flappers – Episode 10: “Pure Jitter”

Be careful what you wish for.

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Our opposing organizations clash at last, but (as always) most of the real shakeups surround our protagonist. Cocona’s trust is shattered and her world turned upside-down thanks to a series of reveals that threaten not only the relationships she holds most dear, but her very sense of self. Not to mention Mom is being, like, a total control-freak. It’s hard out here for a teen, that’s for sure.

Click here for the full post on Anime Evo!