Otaku Daydreams

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Inspiring Quotes: Shingeki no Kyojin

I’ve been asking myself this recently – why did I choose to take Literature as one of my subjects? It’s like a completely different version from what I studied before. It’s forcing me to think deeper, to try to grasp what the author is trying to imply. Unfortunately, things aren’t going very well. While attempting to think deeper, I feel that I am drowning in a sea of question marks. I constantly feel intimidated by the works of others. I often wonder how they manage to magically craft essays with such beautiful phrases. Why am I so inferior?

Another thought that floated in my mind is why anime could not be part of my curriculum. Why couldn’t Literature test us about anime instead of such puzzling and infuriating poems and extracts? Why can’t the question be on “Write a critical commentary on the following anime extract”? I would look forward to every assignment.

However, what has been done cannot be undone. In this beautiful cruel world, we encounter many obstacles that trap us in a net of regrets. Yet, in this beautiful cruel world, we can change things for the better. Who says that anime can’t be weaved into our daily lives? We don’t watch anime purely for entertainment. Contrary to what most people think, anime does embed certain positive values on us. Shingeki no Kyojin proves to be an inspiring supplier of motivation for me.

snk wallpaper

“On that day, mankind received a grim reminder. We lived in fear of the titans, and were disgraced to live in these cages we called walls.”
– Eren Jaeger

I’ve always felt that Shingeki no Kyojin was a reflection on modern society. It might be set in a different time, but the idea is the same. No world is completely peaceful. After living safely within the walls for years, the Titans have come to invade their territory and to exterminate the entire human population. The Titans in the real world are the obstacles we face in life.

“If you win, you live. If you lose, you die. If you don’t fight, you can’t win!”
– Eren Jaeger 

Running away won’t solve any problems. It’s only by fighting the Titans in our heart that we can get rid of our worries. I tell myself that my homework and exams are Titans. Each of them are classified into different types of Titans, depending on their difficulty. For normal homework, I label them as three-metre tall Titans, the smallest ones. For for difficult ones, I call them ten-metre tall Titans, etc. My school exams are represented by the Armoured Titan while national exams are represented as the Colossal Titan. Whenever I complete a task, I motivate myself by saying what Titan I’ve defeated.

“People who can’t throw something important away, can never hope to change anything.”
– Armin Arlet 

One of my flaws is my procrastination. Sometimes, even when I’m supposed to be doing revision, my mind would drift off to anime. The quote mentioned above caught my attention. If I don’t throw something important away, like the time spent watching anime (when I shouldn’t), I would never be able to change my grades. In this pragmatic society, where good grades are the key to success, I would ruin my future if I don’t change my ways.

Most importantly, the first opening, Guren no Yumiya, is extremely inspiring. If you search for the English lyrics, there’s a stanza that goes like this:

Draw the bow and chase it, don’t let the enemy escape
Fire the arrow and corner it, never let the enemy escape
The bowstring pulled until it is about to snap
Endless volleys continued, until the target drops dead

We are the hunters, everyone, so pick up your crimson bow and arrow and let’s defeat all the Titans together.


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Top 5 Anime Opening Songs

I planned to post this yesterday to welcome the new year with a list of my favourite anime opening songs. However, I didn’t manage to complete it, so I’m posting it today. I always find it interesting when anime fans share their favourite anime opening songs so here are mine!

#5: Kimi ni Todoke

(Kimi ni Todoke OP by Tanizawa Tomofumi)

Despite how I feel that opening songs should be more energetic, Kimi ni Todoke manages to clinch a spot in my top 5 list. That might be a bit strange, but the most important point of an opening song is to reflect the anime it’s about. Kimi ni Todoke, being a shoujo anime, isn’t about action or fighting, so an energetic opening won’t suit it. The title of the song is exactly the same as the anime, so it matches the theme in the anime. The lyrics match the feelings of Sawako and probably Kazehaya as well. It’s a lovely song that gives a calm feeling. The pastel colours of the animation fits the mood of the song too.

#4: Funny Sunny Day

(Katekyo Hitman Reborn OP 7 by SxOxU)

I had some trouble with figuring out the rankings so I got some help from adorable Fuuta from Katekyo Hitman Reborn to help me, so it’s no surprise that an opening song from KHR is in my top 5 list. I might be just a little bit biased and one reason why Funny Sunny Day is chosen is because it’s the only opening with the Tenth Generation all dressed in suits. That’s not the only reason of course. I love how the opening started with the 7 Vongola Boxes vanishing one by one in time with the rhythm of the music. Also, there’s some exciting fighting going on with the Tenth Generation fighting using their new weapons.

#3: Core Pride

(Ao no Exorcist OP 1 by UVERworld)

I like how there’s some jazz in the beginning and the ending of this song which is very rare. The opening starts off with Rin waking up then walking to school. I like how there’s a bit of comedy portrayed there. An opening must be able to show what the anime is about so I like how the elements of Ao no Exorcist is shown in the opening. Later on, things get more serious and a bit depressing so viewers are reminded about what Ao no Exorcist really is about. It’s not just fun and laughter, and Rin doesn’t have an easy life. The lyrics match the anime and Rin’s feelings.

#2: Uragiri no Yuuyake

(Durarara OP 1 by Theatre Brook)

I wasn’t very sure if I’d like Durarara when I first started watching it but once I got to the opening song, my doubts were lifted. In my opinion, energetic openings are the best, and Uragiri no Yuuyake is a great example. It brightens my mood and gets me excited for each episode. When I heard this song, it gave me a very positive feeling that made me believe I would enjoy Durarara, which I did. Most importantly, every second of the animation matches the song perfectly. I like how it starts off with the rotating of the wheels of Celty’s motorcycle accompanied by a catchy beat of the song.

#1: Guren no Yumiya

(Shingeki no Kyojin OP 1 by Linked Horizon)

To me, opening songs are of utmost importance to their respective anime. They provide the mood and atmosphere at the start of each episode, especially in episode 1. Guren no Yumiya really captured my attention. The melody makes me feel energised and the lyrics make me motivated like “Only the will to fight can change our world”. In terms of lyrics, I feel that Guren no Yumiya is the most meaningful opening as it definitely relates to the anime itself. The animation matches the feelings of the song perfectly and gives out the “Let’s defeat the Titans!” feeling. Every time I watch this opening, I feel like jumping up and grabbing my own 3D maneuver gear (unfortunately I don’t own one) to join in the fight.

These are just my opinions. Feel free to share your opinions on what you feel are your top 5 openings with me too!


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Favourite 2013 Anime Ending Song

2013 is ending, so what’s the best way to end the year with? Reviewing the best anime ending song of the year of course.

Utsukushiki Zankoku na Sekai

(Shingeki no Kyojin ED 1 by Yoko Hikasa)

When I first heard this song, I was thinking that the singer sounded familiar. Thus, I did some research and I found out that the singer is Yoko Hikasa, one of my favourite seiyuu and singers! What I love about Utsukushiki Zankoku na Sekai is that the meaning of the song is “This Beautiful Cruel World”, which matches Shingeki no Kyojin perfectly. What the main characters want is to get to the other side of the Wall to see the beautiful world they’ve read about. However, this means that they’ll reach a dangerous zone where they can be attacked, no, eaten, by Titans. This is the cruel truth about the world in which the anime takes place. It really is a beautiful cruel world.

As for the rest of the song, the animation portrays Mikasa, the main female character. I think that the song really suits her. Everyone thinks of her as a strong girl, but she has her sad times as well. Utsukushiki Zankoku na Sekai shows that.

Runner-Up: Daisy 

(Kyoukai no Kanata ED by Stereo Dive Foundation)

I’ve loved this song since I first heard it. Listening to Daisy gives a calm, soothing feeling. Somehow, it manages to wrap up each episode nicely. I’ve read some comments about how it’s similar to Tsuioku Merry-Go-Round, ending 2 from Fairy Tail. I agree. The mood of both songs are similar, and that’s why I love them both. To me, while an opening song should make viewers eager and ready to watch an episode, an ending song should be more calming in contrast. Back to Daisy, I like how the animation of the ending looks great and suits the mood of the song.

Anyway, it’s night time here on New Year’s Eve. There’s one more hour to 2014! I don’t know what time it’ll be when you guys are reading this, so here’s a “Happy New Year” in advance! I hope that 2014 will be a great year for everyone.


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Wrapping Up the Year 2013 with Anime

With 2013 ending, here’s a post to wrap up all of the anime I’ve watched this year. The list may look short, but that’s because I’m only including anime that are released this year.

Spring 2013 – Karneval

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I think the reason why I watched Karneval is the animation. The characters are well-designed with cool costumes, or at least for the Circus members. On to the plot… I find the beginning of the anime well… awkward. I was debating whether or not I’m watching something very wrong but it turned out fine (phew). Throughout the series, one thing I noticed is that Karneval spends too much time introducing so many characters that the actual plot does not have enough development. For example, I find episode 11, Ice Cream Parade, redundant. It doesn’t contribute much to the plot and it’s like the characters forgot about their important mission. Then in episode 12, they suddenly remember that they’re supposed to save Karoku. In other words, I feel that the ending was too rushed. Perhaps without episode 11 there would have enough time to make the plot run smoothly.

Nevertheless, Karneval did cover enough of the main characters’ backgrounds so I did watch the anime with some feelings instead of being an emotionless ice block that I can for anime I seriously cannot stand. For girls, yes, Karneval has a lot of bishies (it’s josei after all) so if you watch anime based on its animation, Karneval might be for you. Ok I should admit that I do squeal over bishies as well. (Kyaa Gareki!) *cough* If we’re judging on the plot, the 13 episodes should have been spent more focused on the actual plot.

Shingeki no KyojinImage

Here’s an anime that requires no introduction. It’s an anime that both anime and even non-anime fans around me have been watching. SnK is probably the most popular anime of this year. At first, I was quite hesitant to watch it because I was afraid that it would be very gory. Once I watched episode 1, instead of being scared of the Titans, I cried when Eren’s mother was eaten by the Titan. There’s only one word to describe Shingeki no Kyojin: AWESOME. What I really like about this anime is its originality. I’ve never heard of anything like it. Besides, the fighting scenes are epic. Watching the characters fight the Titans while moving around using their 3D maneuver gear makes me want my own 3D maneuver gear so I can join in the fight. In addition, the openings and endings of Shingeki no Kyojin match the mood of the anime perfectly.

Every single episode was great. With such popularity, I really hope that there will be a second season for Shingeki no Kyojin. If you haven’t watched it, what are you waiting for? Watch it now!

Fall 2013 – Kyoukai no Kanata

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I feel that this one had quite a lot of potential, with an unusual plot. The first few minutes of episode 1 were baffling. I mean, what’s with Mirai suddenly stabbing Akihito with no explanation? At first, I planned to drop the anime due to that insanity but a part ofme wanted to know what happened next. Hence, I stuck around. Episodes 1-5 were slow and I was getting a bit bored but then came along episode 6. It didn’t contribute to the actual plot, but it was really funny, especially the ending.

Things finally started falling into place in episodes 10 and 11 and it was getting more interesting but then episode 12 arrived, being the finale of the series. Like I said, Kyoukai no Kanata had a lot of potential but there were too many plot holes. It has been a bit too draggy that many matters were left unexplained. Usually, at the end of a series, I will feel very strongly that there should be a second season. However, in this case, I’m not sure if I actually really want another season.

Kyousougiga Kyousougiga

Here’s one rare anime that manages to start and end off well despite having only 10 episodes. It’s the shortest anime I’ve watched so far, but every episode is a pleasant watch. Nothing is too slow or fast and the pacing is just right for an anime about a family like this. The character’s backgrounds are well-explained and every one of them is unique. I wasn’t very fond of the main character, Koto, at first, but when the story progressed, I began to like her because she’s not really just the troublemaker that she seems. In fact, she’s the key to bringing the family back together. Kyousougiga has amazing animation and a wonderful story as a whole.

log horizon

Log Horizon (On-going)

Many people compare Log Horizon to Sword Art Online since both of them are based on a MMORPG then drop Log Horizon because they find it boring in comparison. In my opinion, that isn’t fair. The two animes talk about different aspects of a MMORPG and the two games themselves are different. Log Horizon focuses more on governing the players. Though I’m not fond of politics, Log Horizon is more interesting in the sense that it doesn’t turn out to be a harem like SAO. (I’m not saying I don’t like SAO. The first half was awesome.) To those who prefer action, Log Horizon might be less exciting to watch. However, if you’re interested in another side of a MMORPG game, Log Horizon is worth the watch. The anime is only half-way through, so hopefully the second half of the series will be more exciting.

Naji no Asukara

Nagi no Asukara (On-going)

I’ve just finished watching the latest episode today. Nagi no Asukara has the most complicated relationships I’ve seen. To sum it up, it’s Kaname likes Chisaki. Chisaki likes Hikari. Hikari likes Manaka. Manaka likes Tsumugu. If this isn’t enough, add in Miuna likes Hikari and Sayu likes Kaname.

That aside, Nagi no Asukara is one of my favourite animes of Fall 2013. I like how it’s about people of the sea and the people on the surface are starting to get along after being rivals for a long time. To those who haven’t watched this anime, the people of the sea aren’t mermaids. In fact, they look like regular humans and are humans. What’s distinct about them are their bright blue eyes and their Ena, which enables them to breathe underwater. At first, I did not like the main character Hikari due to his bad temper. However, I like how he changed his attitude throughout the anime. He’s now a dependable person who can get along with the people of the sea and the surface. After watching shocking episode 13, I’m looking forward to what Nagi no Asukara will bring in 2014.

So, that’s 2013 in anime. Hopefully I’ll still have enough time to watch and blog about anime next year. There’s still a few more hours to 2014 for me, but Happy New Year to those who are already celebrating the new year!