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I’ve watched a decent amount of anime stuff lately. discontinued it’s annoying Anime Strike service, allowing Prime members to watch any of the shows previously locked behind that paywall. So I watched Land of the Lustrous, which received a notable amount of internet buzz. Unfortunately, it was far more narratively bland than I’d expected, with a slow, meandering plot that presents a very alien and obtuse scenario, while continuing to pose questions that receive no answers. The show is basically about a bunch of literal gem girls, who live on a small island and fight aliens from the moon  for…reasons (?). It does have an incredible soundtrack, though, and the first season ends in a place that at least has me intrigued enough to watch a second season, although somewhat begrudgingly. The animation style is a fascinating mix of very fluid CG and traditional. It’s probably the best looking CG anime series I’ve seen, not including movies like Gantz:0 and Captain Harlock, which are a CG visual feast.

Having said that, I watched the Captain Harlock movie on Netflix and absolutely loved it! That’s not to say it’s a brilliant piece of fiction, it is a story that should sink with the number of plot holes it’s sporting. But what I like about Harlock is its unabashed embrace of swashbuckling scifi fanatasy space opera tropes while taking itself dead seriously. I found myself smiling like an idiot the entire time, it’s quite the ride if you just want to engulf yourself in a hilariously melodramatic space adventure. If i had to describe the story in one sentence, I’d call it the most over dramatic retelling of Pixar’s Wally that you can imagine.

Finally, I watched an episode and a half of that Devilman Crybaby show everyone seems to love on Netflix, but determined it wasn’t for me. not only did I feel embarrassed watching it, but the way it treats its female characters turned me off intensely. The animation style was interesting, but not enough to hold my interest through all the cringe worthy bits, of which there are many.

One of the others shows on Amazon that I’ll likely watch next is Made in Abyss. Great looking animation and an intriguing premise, what more could you ask for?? Aside from a competently told story and well written characters, of course.

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  • Justin

    I figured this would happen. While individually the guns might eb somewhat useless, numbers and training can quickly turn that aside.

    • Mike Sanders

      numbers and training? in a series modeled after feudal Japan? surely you jest!
      *pew pew pew*
      welp, back to the drawing board.

    • 627235

      How long did they have to train anyway? Hasn’t it just been hours or at best a day since they obtained those guns?

      There’s also remarkably little smoke.

      • clogboy

        Take it with a grain of salt 😉
        Or gunpowder, whatever.

    • winger

      i also find it dumb not a single one of them bothered with a shield

      • Jonathan B

        Shields don’t seem to have been that much of a thing in feudal Japan. They had an awful lot of two-handed weapons, even among the swords, but also a different combat philosophy that placed less emphasis on defense and personal survival.

  • Wanderer

    Gotta give Eijiro credit on this one. He seems to have very quickly figured out the best tactical uses for firearms, including how to both maximize their strengths and overcome their weaknesses. Even for an enemy that was at least somewhat prepared, Eijiro had a better strategy ready.

    Hate to say it Tanaka, but if you’re dead you won’t be missed. You may be a valuable ally for the main characters, but good god are you an obstinate pain in the ass. Practically a personification of the old “The friend that nobody actually likes” thing

  • charles81

    Bang Bang, he shot them down
    Bang Bang, they hit the ground
    Bang Bang, that awful sound
    Banb Bang, Eijiro shot them dowwwwwn

  • Hfar

    Deadpan Willy Wonka: “Oh no, Tanaka’s dead.”

  • KungFuKlobber

    Armor farmer darmpety doo
    I’ve got a perfect puzzle for you
    Armor farmer darmpety dee
    If you are wise you’ll listen to me

    What do you get when you think you know more
    Than everyone else about waging war?
    When you’ve ignored what your best people said
    You will not come out ahead
    You’ll just stop not dying

    Armor farmer darmpety da
    If you’re not prideful, you will go far
    You will live in happiness too
    Like the armored farmers darmpety do

    • suburban_samurai

      Well, that’s stuck in my head for the rest of the day.

    • Drunken Nordmann

      That’s brilliant.

  • Ocean Burning.

    I’m dying XD

  • Turul

    Aw. :(

  • clogboy

    Wow. Big step from ‘it does BOOM’, to practical strategic application.

  • Kid Chaos

    RIP, General Tanaka. 💀 Now then, time for General Ina to take command! 😎

  • jankmaster98

    Oh no! He’s been Nagashino’ed!

    • clogboy

      Oh NagashiNooooo

    • clogboy

      Also: you NagashiDidn’t!

  • Xenocide

    Well, we know whose overconfidence process to be their downfall now, at least.

    • endplanets

      Zing, wicked pun.

  • Major Tom

    Should’ve used a counter barrage of arrows.

    • Xinef

      Yeah… generally when you are in fortified positions and opponents are not…
      CHARGING isn’t the wisest strategy.

      Except maybe in some sieges, especially against siege equipment, or if opponents can just starve you to death otherwise.

  • AGV

    Well, that’s a bummer

    I saw the Devilman Crybaby show announced and I was like “meh” , but then the speed at which it became popular got my attention and I added it to my watch list more or less like you, but given your reaction I’m rather thrown back, I don’t have much espectations now

    The Land of the Lustrous gives me a slight Steven Universe vibe
    The Captain Harlock movie looks quite cool
    And Made in Abyss looks really nice, I’m looking foward to that one

    • charles81

      Devilman Crybaby did get better after those initial two episodes on the cringe worthy side of things, but in all honesty… it just wasn’t good overall IMHO. There was a nice overarching plot and I liked the plot reveals and ending of the overarching plot, but I dislike a lot of the way it was done. The last episode was, for all intents and purposes, like a summary wrap-up, as if they’d run out of budget and had to simply skim over a chunk of story and summarise what happened in between to get to the outcomes of it all. So despite getting past some of the initial stuff Alex had concerns over, I still recommend spending your time watching something else.

      • clogboy

        Maybe the studio bought the anime license before the manga was completed. The first Fullmetal Alchemist wasn’t bad, and neither was the first Hellsing anime, but Brotherhood and Ultimate were a more complete retelling with better production value IMO.
        I feel bad for the Deadman Wonderland anime. The premise is very good and it raises a bunch of more or less original subplots, that are all brushed aside for an all-out rebellion story that wraps things up with questions left unanswered.

        • charles81

          Nah, Devilman finished ages ago. It’s an old enough Manga that an anime has already been made for it in the past. Crybaby is a bit of a retelling/alteration, although that quick ending is part of the original manga as well… In fact, it’s even quicker and offers less details and answers than the Anime.

          • clogboy

            Apparently, the creator realized how bad it was, and just wanted to wrap it up and move on :)
            Hypothetically, if you had the anime rights for nn4b right now, how would you go about it? Dive straight into the action and do the early stuff as flashbacks?

          • charles81

            Hard to say. The original story has already been modified somewhat after it turned more serious and they edited the pages to a print friendly format. I’d possibly have Yori act somewhat less clumsy while taking on the rogues. Maybe a search party out for Ina that they need to hide from. But ultimately its a pretty good start to the series, all things considered.

          • suburban_samurai

            I think I would start with a montage of the last battle of the 100 year war between Wataro and Daisuke (the one where Hirotomo and Genchu first met). There’d be some narration, setting up how the end of the war and the uniting of the two clans had brought a decade of relative peace and stability, until the Wataro clan betrayed and wiped out their own allies. That would set up the apparent untrustworthiness and violence of the Wataro clan so Ina’s reaction to the arranged marriage would seem more justified.

          • jwkovell

            “Long ago, the two nations lived together in harmony. Then, everything changed when the Fire Nation, I mean Wataro Clan, attacked.”

    • Kid Chaos

      What about “Godzilla”? I loved it, and I can’t wait for part 2. 😎

      • AGV

        I liked it, but the protagonist (whose a general, not a scientist for what I gathered) being able to make a precise description of Godzilla from data that apparently noone bothered to put together for twenty years AND that along with the subsequent plan working with the wrong Godzilla feels quite out of place
        Also, if kaijus are some sort of space dolence which just spawn on and attack arrogant civilizations, why do they need to breed? Is that another of Godzilla’s unique quirks?
        It feels to me that there’s alot left hanging, but maybe the coming sequels will answer these questions

        • Nos Rin aka CTCO

          wait? wrong godzilla? which godzilla movie is this?

          • AGV

            The Netflix one I supposed?

            Spoilers ahead (kinda late, but oh well)

            In the movie, near the end, it’s stated that perhaps Godzilla bred while humanity left, which is confirmed when, after they defeat ‘Godzilla’, the original one awakens (conveniently, near where all the action takes place)

          • Nos Rin aka CTCO

            humanity left? I am even more confused now.
            I know there’s a dvd at walmart for some new, shin godzilla or something. i think?

          • AGV

            Netflix’s and Shin are different (Netflix’s is animated)

          • Nos Rin aka CTCO

            i looked that up ya. interesting. neat to see more godzilla stuff in the world.

          • Nos Rin aka CTCO

            shin godzilla is the stuff of nightmares. *shivers*

  • LordBolanderFace

    Tanaka isn’t losing. Tanaka is winning. What they’re not telling us is that Tanaka has been suffering from amnesia this whole time, but the sound of gunfire jogged his memory (harkening back to his many brutal space wars) and he remembered the lover he had long since thought was lost… the ground. Thus, he dropped down to kiss his sweet mistress and…
    Is nobody buying this?

    • endplanets

      Of course nobody is buying it. The Ground can never be one’s lover. Only ONE’S MORTAL ENEMY!

      • Hfar

        The Floor is bad, but there is only one that I consider my mortal enemy: THE GRASS!

      • Nos Rin aka CTCO

        the man with dog is just so misunderstood.
        truly a masterpiece that only the most cultured of folks can understand.

  • Ivresse

    Memories of Zulu we coming back to me. Seems fitting the ones with guns are wearing red…

  • Hineko

    In which Eijiro is significantly less stupid than General Tanaka assumed.

  • foducool

    yep, that’s exactly how firearms were used back them, 2 rows of riflemen, one to fire, one to reload so you could fire continuously

    • purplelibraryguy

      Well . . . for very low-res values of “continuously”.

      • foducool

        they could add even more rows of riflemen if reloading was taking even longer
        point was, don’t bring close quarter weapons to a gun fight

        • purplelibraryguy

          Depends. One volley, especially by only a minority of your forces, isn’t typically enough to stop a charge. Those musketeers (probably not riflemen) engaged from pretty close range (well, given the accuracy of muskets and their level of training, they probably have to). At a certain point, it becomes a case of “don’t bring muskets to a close-quarters fight”.

          The question right now is, will the attackers break because some got hit and their general bought it? If they press the charge home, I would figure the musketeers to be meat. If they break, they lose. It’s in the balance, but not because spears couldn’t beat muskets.

          • Nos Rin aka CTCO

            it looks like no one is left to “press the charge home”.

  • endplanets

    Speaking of literal gem girls who fight aliens from outer space AND Captain Harlock (in the most bizarre of coincidences mind you), give the cartoon show Steven Universe a shot I guess. It starts off ‘monster of the week’, but plot-twist it ain’t.

    And insert generic plug for Attack on Titan anime. It really is so great. God Damn, the most edge of your seat stuff right there.

    And I guess our 12-year old tactician really did play Call of Duty in between flinging jingoistic epithets, ‘come at me bro’-ing, and asking his parents to leave him alone while he shoots dudes.

    He took the phrase “cover me, I’m reloading” and actually put it to good use.

    • suburban_samurai

      Steven Universe is my favorite show (like, of all time). I basically watched the Harlock movie after I watched Lars of the Stars. I also watch AoT and read the manga!

      Eijiro’s also 16, which would make him slightly older than the overage CoD player (ZING!)

  • Alexis Casto

    -facepalms- Idiots literally ran right into that one.

  • purplelibraryguy

    Mind you, the principle remains sound. Keep charging, guys, they’re out now.

  • Dshim

    Oh no, they killed Tanaka! You bastards!

  • FredThethird

    that is remarkably high level of accuracy for a poorly trained army with little concrete idea of how to use, load, or even hold a musket. I mean, hell; just poring in the wrong amount of powder can make a huge difference. And then everyone seems to have mastered the proper stance and even how to quickly load. and none of these bothersome issues with range and acuracy most well trained musket users face. Would put some modern armies to shame.

    • winger

      well to be fair the targets were up close

      • Aclys

        Also, all the time the defenders spent preparing for this? The shooters spent preparing how to use those rifles right… knowing that faliure to learn quickly would lead to death by missfiring rifle or irrate superiors….

    • Nos Rin aka CTCO


    • Bepis

      To be fair, the matchlock arquebus did not use loose powder for the most part; European soldiers at least had bandoliers with numerous paper cartridges that each contained a bullet and an appropriate amount of powder.

      I’m not sure about these matchlock ashigaru, but given that all a matchlock demands is a little fire discipline and rote memorization of the reloading procedure, they very well could have learned how to use their weapons effectively in the time span between their introduction and their deployment.

  • capsy dash

    can someone please tell me what cacophony stands for?

    • Jonathan B

      cacaphony is a lot of loud noise. Such as the noise of a bunch of men in armor rushing along a road, in its earlier usage.

      • capsy dash

        ah, I see. thanks. ; )

  • Dim Light

    …..isn’t using volleys basic practice in archer squads, too? How can he NOT have seen that coming?

    • Bepis

      Archers deliver a volley all at once; every single archer fires and then they all draw a new arrow and reload. Tanaka likely expected the arquebusiers to universally fire and then undergo their well-known long reloading procedure; that 1/2 of the arquebusiers (in the second line) did not fire, and instead delivered a second volley after the first began, likely came as a shock to him in the moments before he was cut down by a bullet.

      • Dim Light

        Like the article says, loading a crossbow was slow, and volleys were used at least with them too. And those have been around a lot longer than the rifles.

      • Kid Chaos

        “Come on, boys; they couldn’t hit an elephant at this dis–” 💀

  • SlugFiller

    So, ultimately, he went down to over-eagerness? He heard “reload” and went storming out without even looking? His set-up was right. His eagerness to charge was his only downfall. He should have just bunkered down in those trenches.

    Heck, why would he even assume all of the gunmen would fire in-sync? Rather than dividing into rows, it would have made just as much sense for them to fire at random, creating a sort of rain of bullets.

    • clogboy

      The reload time was literally all he was banking on.

  • Nos Rin aka CTCO

    well that didn’t fucking work AT ALL!!!
    RIP general dude.

  • Nos Rin aka CTCO

    I heard that captain harlock film is very untrue to the original old series, which made me hesitant to watch that.
    I believe one or more of the netflix reviews stated that.

  • D_Merkel

    The British did not develop staggered firing until the 1700s. Japan would have been behind that.

    • Seiji Fujii

      what? the british were quite the retards before 1700’s then, the japanese adopted fire by rank and volley fire right from the tercios of spain and portugal who were the dominant power for 200 years.

      To be honest, after the sengoku jidai, japans army could go toe to toe with any european one, their pike and shot game was on point. Their weakness was calvary and artillery, thou.

  • Insane Disciple

    You better be dead and not severely injured, Dumbass

  • Frank Royce Harr

    Yeah, I was afraid of something like that. :(

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