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San Diego Comic Con 2014

San Diego Comic Con 2014

There's nothing quite like SDCC. I've been to conventions of all types—big ones, small ones, first-year conventions, conventions running for longer than I've been alive—but few conventions have evolved quite like this one. S

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Free! Eternal Summer: Episode 02-04 Review

Free! Eternal Summer: Episode 02-04 Review

With summer nationals still many months away, there's plenty of time for character growth; most of it goes to Rin, but everyone else gets much more development than they had in the previous season, as well.

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Fate/Stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works: Episode 01 Review

Fate/Stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works: Episode 01 Review

From something that started as an H-game with questionable writing, the Fate franchise has grown incredibly. This adaptation will be the third anime adaptation of Fate/Stay Night, and all in less than ten years. However, as many fans will argue, it's a necessary one.

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Free! Eternal Summer: Episode 01 Review

Free! Eternal Summer: Episode 01 Review

No one was surprised that Free! got a second season, but I was sure surprised to see a season called "Eternal Summer" start in the middle of winter. It makes some sense—no one on the Iwatobi team was a third-year (and thus in danger of graduating), but their rivals at Samezuka had to say farewell to their captain and introduce a new one.

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Sailor Moon Crystal: Episode 01 Review

Sailor Moon Crystal: Episode 01 Review

It's here, it's here, it's finally here! The Sailor Moon reboot we've all been waiting for. It seemed almost impossible that a franchise as big and as popular as Sailor Moon had gone so long without any sort of extra story or remake (as fantastic as the stage shows and live action series are, they're just not quite the same), but after 23 long years, the anime is finally getting a modern treatment!

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Haikyuu!!: Episode 08-10 Review

Haikyuu!!: Episode 08-10 Review

By now, Haikyuu!! has made sure we all know that its focus is on Karasuno as a team. Hinata and Kageyama are the center of attention, sure, but it's refreshing that the last three episodes have centered on Karasuno's dynamic as a team.

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Kamigami no Asobi: Episode 08-10 Review

Kamigami no Asobi: Episode 08-10 Review

Well, nothing can last forever. I hoped that while digging into the gods' backstories, KamiAso would keep the same tone we'd seen earlier, with visual gags breaking up some of the tension, if nothing else. Last time, episode seven started to break from that pattern, but I still hoped—since Loki was involved—that they'd drag it back to a more mischievous tone, since the split ended on a bit of a cliffhanger.

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Kamigami no Asobi Episode 05-07 Review

Kamigami no Asobi Episode 05-07 Review

As KamiAso progresses, we get to see a little more about each of the gods - we started this with Hades in Episode 04, and continue with Susano-o, Tsukuyomi, and Baldr in episodes 5, 6, and 7 respectively. Unfortunately, while KamiAso still keeps straddling the line between taking itself seriously with its ridiculous concept and making fun of itself, it's starting to lose some of its charm.

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Fanime 2014

Fanime 2014

There were a lot of expectations riding on Fanime this year; after last year's registration "line-con" fiasco and Artist's Alley movement, the staff of Fanime had a lot of slack to pick up if faith was going to be restored...

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Haikyuu!! Episodes 05-07 Review

Haikyuu!! Episodes 05-07 Review

Haikyuu!! is starting to fall into more of a rhythm now as the volleyball season starts in earnest. Karasuno has their first real match (even if it is just a practice match) against Aobajousai, a high school in their area with a highly-ranked team.

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Kamigami no Asobi Episode 02-04 Review

Kamigami no Asobi Episode 02-04 Review

Mostly I find myself constantly amused by how far into tropes and caricatures the characters get. They could play everything straight, and with Apollo they get dangerously close to doing so, but then Hades will physically back away quickly if anyone gets too close to him, everyone strips at the beach to flowery backgrounds and borders, and Zeus changes the seasons at the snap of his fingers. We literally go from spring to summer to fall in one episode. Everything's so ridiculous and over the top that you can't help but laugh.

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Haikyuu!! Episode 02-04 Review

Haikyuu!! Episode 02-04 Review

Haikyuu!!'s strength lies in its cast - with Hinata's inexperience comes an easy set-up to explain volleyball terms and techniques, but it's his enthusiasm and pure love for the game that shines through and makes it clear that the series will be about Karasuno's growth as a whole team.

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Sakura-Con 2014 by Katie Cunico

Sakura-Con 2014 by Katie Cunico

Sakuracon has a lot going for it; it's in the spring in Seattle, which even when it rains, as it did part of this year, is always nice and mild. It's very suitable for any type of convention activity, whether it be lugging purchases around or costumes of any type. The neighborhood the convention center and surrounding hotels are in is a fantastic one - I've mentioned the Gameworks across the street before, and it remains a favorite after-con activity for many congoers, especially on Thursday night - and there's no shortage of food or shopping or entertainment.

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Kamigami no Asobi: Episode 01 Review

Kamigami no Asobi: Episode 01 Review

You can't just have a regular old dating game anymore. You've got have a catch these days—vampires, monster girls, pigeons—some sort of hook to pull people in beyond the usual tropes that separate each route. Kamigami no Asobi, true to its name, pulls gods from all sorts of pantheons, reimagining them as attractive high school boys.

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Haikyuu!!: Episode 01 Review

Haikyuu!!: Episode 01 Review

Inspired by a match on TV in which the "small giant" from Karasuno High jumps to amazing heights, even getting over blockers, Hinata gets his middle school friends together to form a volleyball club and sets his sights on one day getting into Karasuno and playing volleyball in the footsteps of the small giant he idolizes.

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Fanime 2013: Takahiro Omori and Yumi Sato Exclusive Interview

Fanime 2013: Takahiro Omori and Yumi Sato Exclusive Interview

Agent Kuroi has the opportunity at Fanime 2013 to conduct an exclusive interview with Japanese Animation Director Takahiro Omori and Japanese Animation Producer Yumi Sato.

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Yowamushi Pedal – First Impressions

Yowamushi Pedal – First Impressions

The start of high school always means selecting a club for new students. For Onoda Sakamichi, it seems like an easy choice. Being a closet otaku to whom Akihabara is the promised land, and wanting nothing more than to have friends he can talk about anime and manga with, it’s definitely be the anime club.

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Beyond the Boundary – First Impressions

Beyond the Boundary – First Impressions

Kyoukai no Kanata is this season's offering from KyoAni, based on a novel series. While it does hit a lot of their normal tropes—mainly Kuriyama and her endearing klutz personality—there's a lot that seems to be going on in the background that is promising.

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Galilei Donna – First Impressions

Galilei Donna – First Impressions

From its description, Galilei Donna has the potential to be either amazing or a glorious train wreck: three moons, inhabiting the female bodies of Galileo's descendants, are pursued by international agencies.

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Fanime 2013

Fanime 2013

Fanime has always stuck by its motto, “By Fans, For Fans,” meaning no industry presence in either the convention itself or in the dealer's room.

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Sakura-Con 2013

Sakura-Con 2013

For all that Fanime will always have my allegiance as my home con, Sakuracon is swiftly becoming one of my favorites, and it’s only slightly because it is close and grants easy access to delicious food that friends and I look forward to months in advance.

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Free! – Iwatobi Swim Club: Episode 10 Review

Free! – Iwatobi Swim Club: Episode 10 Review

After the events of episode seven and the angst race, Free! has definitely taken a turn for the angstier, with lots of side glances, snide smirks, and glares. Rin is still an insufferable asshole, obsessed with winning, and even the addition of more backstory in episode ten can't help him (in fact, it just made it worse, since there wasn't much of a reason for his actions). However, Free! has made it clear just how amazing the rest of the Iwatobi Swim Club is.

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Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA ILLYA: Episode 04 Review

Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA ILLYA: Episode 04 Review

First and foremost, Prisma Illya is a parody. A parody of magical girl genres, card game shows, and Fate/Stay Night itself. It's easy to remember this when the show does things like Illya calling Ruby out on teasing her by stating that "a magical girl's greatest weapon is her cuteness," or the way Illya stumbles about her first battle (and runs away).

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Free! – Iwatobi Swim Club: Episode 07 Review

Free! – Iwatobi Swim Club: Episode 07 Review

Seven episodes in and it's pretty obvious that KyoAni knows their main demographic. We all knew from the start, but these recent episodes have definitely played right into the hands of the fujoshi crowd.

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Blood Lad: First Impressions

Blood Lad: First Impressions

Imagine a vampire. Tall, pale, mysterious, in a big cloak, and completely unable to control itself around humans because it wants their blood, right? Meet Staz. Staz is a modern vampire, which means he has a slightly different obsession: manga, games, and anime.

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Free! – Iwatobi Swim Club: Episode 4 Review

Free! – Iwatobi Swim Club: Episode 4 Review

Still backed by a dubstep background piece that comes in at the most giggle-worthy moments, Free! jumps from serious rivalry and competition-based angst to girls ogling muscles and guys trying on swimsuits that seem to become more and more ridiculous (and when you're starting off with a pair of rainbow-striped jammers, you'd think it would be hard to top).

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New York Comic Con 2012

New York Comic Con 2012

Every year, NYCC has given me reasons to make that trip over and over again. Last year really put NYCC on the map, with the big TV and movie studios finally taking a chance and treating New York much more like they would San Diego, with exclusive content, big panels, and even bigger stars.

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Anime Expo 2013

Anime Expo 2013

Let's get one thing straight: Anime Expo is an exhausting convention. As North America's largest anime convention, it's got a long history and a big reputation to uphold, and it does so by pulling out all the stops: huge guests, big concerts, and a huge cash prize for winners of the cosplay masquerade.

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Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA ILLYA: First Impressions

Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA ILLYA: First Impressions

To anyone who knows Type-Moon, Fate/Kaleid Liner Prisma Ilya might seem strange - a happy, super-moe magical girl show with a young Ilya von Einzbern as the center. It's a total AU, where the Holy Grail Wars don't exist and the servants we're all familiar with exist as cards.

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Free! – Iwatobi Swim Club: First Impressions

Free! – Iwatobi Swim Club: First Impressions

There's been so much buzz about Free!, from the first announcement to the first episode, that it's almost impossible to really know what to expect going into the show. I'll also say it straight out: no one was as excited for this show as I was. As a long time competitive swimmer and a long time sports series addict, the lack of a series about swimming (even if Golden Boys' swimming scene is classic) was a huge hole to me that needed to be filled.

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Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor 2: Episode 7 Review

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor 2: Episode 7 Review

Devil Survivor is definitely living up to the expectations put on it, coming from a best-selling game from a huge-name franchise. Since episode one, Hibiki, Nitta, and Daichi have gone through a number of battles - a lot for only three days in the series - and learned a lot about their situation.

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The Severing Crime Edge: Episode 7 Review

The Severing Crime Edge: Episode 7 Review

For a show we all expected to be full of lolicon and hair porn/innuendo, The Severing Crime Edge is turning out to be one of the better shows this season, if not one of the most all-around entertaining. In the first episode, we were tantalized with the idea of Killing Goods,

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Flowers of Evil: First Impressions

Flowers of Evil: First Impressions

I initially agreed to pick this up because of the director, Hiroshi Nagahama, who directed two of my favorites - Detroit Metal City and Mushi-shi - and the premise sounded interesting - psychological slice-of-life teenage drama. There's a lot here to turn off potential viewers - the art style contrasts highly detailed backgrounds with character designs

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The Severing Crime Edge: First Impressions

The Severing Crime Edge: First Impressions

This is a tricky series to classify. From the name, The Severing Crime Edge, as well as the font that the title is in, you'd think it's a horror show. From the artwork, something lighter and sweet. From the description, a romantic comedy. I mean, come on. A guy who loves cutting hair a little too much and a girl with supposedly cursed hair that can never be cut? Match made in anime heaven.

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Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor 2: First Impressions

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor 2: First Impressions

I've gotta admit, this was the show I was most looking forward to this season. I'm a big Shin Megami Tensei fan, and I've always been disappointed in myself that I never got around to playing Devil Survivor 1 or 2. The fact that the anime is an adaptation of the second game might be a little off-putting to people, making them think that they missed something or need to have played the first game. However, it actually stands alone, so there's no reason not to jump in.

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Anime Expo 2012

Anime Expo 2012

This year's Anime Expo 2012 marked the 21st year of the convention, and by now, it can (and does) most definitely market itself as the largest anime convention in the United States, behind only Japan Expo in Paris for conventions outside of Japan. As such, Anime Expo draws a huge amount of attendees and top-tier guests, like Japanese pop sensation LiSA and renowned composer Yuki Kajiura.

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New York Comic Con 2011: Nintendo’s Professor Layton and the Eternal Diva Event

New York Comic Con 2011: Nintendo’s Professor Layton and the Eternal Diva Event

This past weekend, at New York Comic Con, I got the wonderful opportunity to attend a special event run by Nintendo: a screening of Professor Layton and the Eternal Diva, the first Professor Layton movie which will be released by Viz in the United States on November 8.

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New York Comic Con 2011

New York Comic Con 2011

New York Anime Festival. Or, New York Comic-Con (NYCC), depending on who you talk to. For the second year in a row, the two were the same convention. After New York Anime Festival had had three years to cement itself as the New York anime con, Reed Pop brought back NYCC from its hiatus in 2010 and combined the two conventions into one mega event, to varying results.

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Katsucon 16

Katsucon 16

My last time at Katsucon, it was my first time attending a convention on the East Coast; I didn't know anyone who was going to be there, and I was already tired out from a 12 hour bus ride to get there. Even so, the convention managed to exceed my expectations, and I had a great time. This year saw Katsucon (nicknamed KatSNOWcon by many, due to the fact that it took place during the snowpocalypse of.....

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Comiket 77

Comiket 77

To an anime fan, especially one who enjoys fanworks, Comic Market—better known as Comiket—is the trip of a lifetime. Held twice yearly at the spacious Tokyo Big Sight, it is certainly a sight to see.It's a mistake to think of Comiket in the way you'd think of most Western anime conventions. Panels and showings aren't a focus, and while there's cosplay it's not a main event either. The best way to think of Comiket is a gigantic......

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Yaoi-Con 2009

Yaoi-Con 2009

Yaoi-con. Just the name might send a few shudders down your spine, and not necessarily the good kind. These days, the word yaoi tends to conjure up images of screaming underage fangirls, the kind that tend to give fandoms, not to mention fans in general, a bad name. However, if one was in the area and decided to drop by the hotel where Yaoi-con was taking place, the San Francisco Airport / San Mateo Marriott, he or she would be in for a treat.

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Katsucon 14

Katsucon 14

Chaos. It’s the term I affectionately use to describe the cons I go to, and for the most part, its pretty accurate- not much else can describe the experience of the noise, color, and sheer activity of an anime convention. Even the tiny cons I attend are usually a mess of people running around, back and forth between buildings. This was my first time at Katsucon.....

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Anime Expo 2008

Anime Expo 2008

Anime Expo. There really isn’t any way to describe the biggest anime convention outside of Japan to someone who hasn’t been there before. No matter how prepared you think you are, unless you’ve been smack-dab in the center of the organized chaos affectionately referred to as AX, you’ll be blown away. The 16th Anime Expo completely took over the Los Angeles Convention Center from July 3rd to the 6th. This was AX’s first year.......

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Anime Boston 2008

Anime Boston 2008

Anime Boston was (not-so) affectionately referred to as Line-Con 2008 this year, and I’d have to agree. As this was my first year attending Anime Boston, I had to take it on the word of staff and other attendees that last year’s registration and pre-registration lines weren’t the 10-hour monstrosities that wound throughout the halls this year. While the pre-reg line didn’t quite reach the 10 hours that the regular registration line did, my friend and I did

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