Chihayafuru Season 1 [Anime Review]

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Genre: Drama, Game, Sports, Romance

Synopses: Chihaya is a lighthearted tomboy, who’s not especially good at anything in particular. Her dream has always been for her sister (an aspiring model) to become the number one beauty of Japan, or perhaps of the world. But then one day she meets someone who tells her that a dream is something that should concern only herself—and something she has to work hard for as well.

At the same time, Chihaya discovers a passion for the old Japanese game hyakunin isshu, also called “karuta”.

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Animation: The art in Chihayafuru has very smooth and calming effect which helps a lot with the overall mood of the anime. The details put into the characters and environment truly surprised me. Scenery throughout the entire anime was vibrant and brought about a since of realism to the situation.

Story: Chihayafuru is based in Japan. Throughout the majority of the anime, Chihaya, the main character, and her friends compete in a sport known as ‘karuta.’ When I found out this sport was done with cards and poetry, I was somewhat skeptical. I saw little chance that a card game about poetry would provide for an interesting turn of events. However, I was quickly persuaded by the complexity of the game and how truly competitive it can be. Despite the complexity of karuta, the way it is described and presented in Chihayafuru makes it seem quite simple and actually enjoyable depending on your likes.

 

Many problems arise through the anime, and, being a drama, there are moments of pure joy as well as moments of comedy and even gut-wrenching sadness. There are intense moments, and there are relaxing moments. I’ll be honest and say the emotions throughout the anime are up and down constantly, and as I watched it I was truly feeling the characters.

 

Characters: The three main characters in the anime are a group of friends, Ayase Chihaya, Mashima Taichi, and Wataya Arata. The three met together at a young age and formed a karuta team. A love triangle quickly formed between the three, giving way for a very interesting turn in events. Each character has their own unique personality and detailed history. Despite the tension in the love triangle of the three main characters, their bonds remain strong beginning to end.

Other rivalry karuta teams appear throughout the anime, but none more notable than the Queen of karuta herself, Shinobu Wakamiya, who Chihaya is determined to defeat. Shinobu is quite the character. She comes up throughout the anime unpronounced, and quite frankly reminds me of the girl from the grudge is a not-so-much dead form. Her fierceness and relentlessness in karuta is was truly drug me into actually attempting a game similar to karuta.

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Sound: The clarity in the voices of the characters was beautiful. Poetry is used throughout the anime, and provides a very calming effect, further influencing the effects of the art and music. The openings are very relaxing, but get old after a while. The only voice actor that I recognized was Miyano, Mamoru who played as Chihaya’s group member and long-time friend Taichi. Miyano also voiced Masaomi Kida from a highly rated anime called Durarara!!

 

Overall Critique: While Chihafuru did grab my attention by throwing off my skepticism, it did start to get old towards the end of the season. There are many moments throughout the anime where the characters do nothing but think to themselves. However, the flashbacks and fillers were kept at a bare minimum. The art: amazing! The music for the opening and closing scenes were peaceful, and I did enjoy them a lot. The development of the characters throughout the anime is clearly there, and connections were both strengthened and weakened, providing for an interesting twist in the love-triangle cliché. The beauty used to link together color, sound, movement, and sportsmanship with poetry truly amazed me. It is a great anime to sit back, think about, and truly enjoy.

Animation: 4/5
Characters: 4/5
Sound: 3/5
Story: 4/5
Overall: 4/5

My Thoughts on Apple Updates (A Little Late)

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I say a little to excuse my absence. I need to pick up the pace with this anyway.

So here’s a quick summary of why my blog has Collector’s Edition Dust settling in on the shelves:

College. Drama shizznits. Jobs. Got hired for an anime review site. Shenanigans. 

I dunno. Should I keep going or do you get the gist?

Anyway, I wrote this a while back. I’m a little late posting it, but it should do for now.

With the release of the Apple iOS7 Update, for those of you who have decided to update your Apple Device, what are your thoughts on the new version? I’m going to be honest. I’m not that impressed. I updated my iPhone 4 with the new release, and am actually regretting it for a few reasons. I have found the new color scheme to be annoyingly bright. Although the flow of the device is a lot smoother in a lot of ways, everything seems very plain and lacks color.

The lock screen is awesome, I will admit, and I love the new pass code screen.

The update requires a good bit of memory. My update was 2.9GB, and I actually had to rid of unwanted applications before I was able to update my system. Although I didn’t regularly use these applications, it was still a lot of memory to have to clear for an update I didn’t know very much about.

If anyone knows of a way to change the color scheme, PLEASE let me know! The SMS screen is annoyingly bright and very, plain!

There have also been, not one, but two new iPhone releases, and I must say I am rather disappointed in Apple’s lack of investment in the new updates. I believe Apple rushed their updates. If they had waited a little longer and developed something more worth while, the updates would have been much more worth the investment in a new phone. Right now though, I can wait until my contract runs out to think about a FingerPrint Scanner and an upgraded camera.

However, without further ado, Apple has introduced the iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5C!

The iPhone 5S is rather disappointing from what I’ve read, thought don’t base your next phone on just my opinion. I always suggest that people do their own research for what they need. As I mentioned before, Apple has introduced a FingerPrint Scanner into the 5S, stepping up in security. The phone can come in three colors: silver, space gray, and gold. Other than the Scanner, I don’t really see much of an upgrade other than the iOS7 Update and some colorful cases.

This leads me to the second release in the Apple’s iPhone creations: the iPhone 5C. C for…color?

Yup. Not much of an update, gonna be honest here guys! So, now you can buy the iPhone in a lot of different colors…with cheaper plastic? Really, Apple? That’s all you have? So instead of 199$USD for an iPhone, you can get cheaper colored plastic for 99$USD? Not impressed.

That’s just my thought though! What are your thoughts? What do you like? What do you hate? For those of you who haven’t updated, are you going to at some point? If you haven’t already, before you do, make sure to check out the updates on Apple’s website!

Ease of Meloncholy

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Breathless is the budded tree rising from the ground
In a façade of awe, it is hiding, shaking in the spring,
Unconnected to the Earth, beating with it, but not of it
Careful now! A fallen leaf can only eddy so far away
Lest the wind be uneasy, its grasp is tight on the root

Its grasp is tight. Unfelt.

He says she smells of pink petals and lavender brush
She says his eyes, deeper than the ocean blue, scream
Their song, sweet melody, provide ease of melancholy
Handsome and inviting, speckled with golden leaves

Its song is loud. Unheard.

The cold snow is trodden, the morning dew ignored
When naked trees shiver, they whistle a love song
But to who? You will never know. It is a mystery
Life’s biggest one, they say, and yet no one seeks it

But why?

I Hate You…

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If there ever was a time for me to simply just shut down and cry, would anyone judge me for doing it now? It seems as though I’ve waited long enough to just check out emotionally, but that seems to be exactly where I’m headed. Three years seems to be long enough to hold on, right? Or maybe I wasn’t holding on, per say, but simply ignoring the aching stake in my chest, far enough away that I don’t have to worry, but close enough that with every beat I could feel it inching closer to my heart.

The flashbacks are getting worse, and I don’t know why… They’re vivid, more real than they have been since they started. I can’t hold my boyfriend anymore… I fell to the ground, catatonic with a flashback… for kissing him… Why… They’ve never been this bad, and I feel completely unable to counter them.

I want to scream I HATE YOU! JUST STOP! JUST GO AWAY! YOU’RE NOT EVEN HERE ANYMORE! But what good would that do. My neighbors must think I’m crazy. My boyfriend must think I’m crazy.

I think I’m crazy.

Every night he visits me, the undying image of a hated man who once held me in chains. He’s gone now. God knows where. Lord knows I don’t care. Or do I? What would I do if I saw him?

I don’t know.

I don’t want to think about it.

I don’t want to think about anything.

I just want to sleep, cover myself up in my brand new 15 pound weighted blanket. It covers me when Andrew can’t, but I’m going to be honest and tell you it’s not the same as a satisfying hug.

I don’t know if the EMDR is working. I don’t want to go back. Every time I go it seems I remember more about it, more than I knew before. I just want to forget it like  I had for 11 years, and maybe it just simply won’t come back. The darkness in my sleep is satisfying, but there’s that 6:00 alarm that wakes me up into another nightmare I can’t seem to change.

Shit. I’m crying again. No on is home. Home alone. PLAID PALS? Who am I kidding. No one knows what that means. I hate him for what he did. I don’t want to forget. I don’t want to get over it. I just didn’t want it to happen in the first place.

I can’t check out, though.

I have you.

And you.

You. You. You. You. You. You. You. You. 

And let’s not forget you.

But, Nathan.

I hate you

I’m not going to think about it right now.

I have Spanish homework…

#killmenow

Zebra Cake Addiction

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So today I have come to truly realize and accept that I, am severely addicted to Little Debbie’s Zebra Cakes. Whew! Glad I got that off my chest! It’s been weighing me down for a while. But no, seriously. It’s a problem, guys, a real problem. I bought TWO boxes today! I grabbed one off of the shelf, hesitated for a little, looked around, then grabbed another. Psh. Like they couldn’t see me! I was almost tempted to ask my brother to buy them for me.

I need to find a Zebra Cake Addicts Anonymous. I have no doubt there is one out there somewhere. How couldn’t there be one?! It’s a major issue in society! I’ve decided, though. I’m definitely going to stick do a plan to dwindle down this unhealthy obsession. So, on each step, I’ll cut down by one pack of Zebra Cakes.

Wait. No, that wouldn’t work…

There aren’t enough steps.

God grant me the serenity 
to accept the things I cannot change; 
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Screw it. Just give me a Zebra Cake!

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Ambushed!

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Everyone knows that grandparents have a knack for telling good war stories. Their heroic  feats are beyond imagination to the sparkling innocent eyes that gaze up curiously into their faded gray pupils. With eyes locked and ears forced forward, mouth agape and hands on knees, the little wonders lean forward excitedly, and one cannot help but continue with the stories. The words of wisdom soaked out from the dry and hoarse voice of an elderly man, blinking tiredly as he strains his weary eyes to stay open.

My grandfather would always tell excellent war stories. I would sit in front of him for hours at a time just to hear him speak. I wanted to share war stories of my own. I’d never been to war, but I had felt the fear of being shot at by missiles. I let my imagination soar.

The summer air was humid. Sitting in my chair, pencil in hand, I simply stared at the blank lined paper. It was too hot to write sentences, and did I honestly even care? No. I did not. Outside I could hear the screams of my friends. They were playing outside, the one place that I wanted to go. The screams continued, but they were not screams of fear but of pleasure and excitement.

With a quick glance behind me, I assured myself it might be safe to sneak out if only for a little. I quietly exited my seat and went outside.

I saw the water guns.

But it was too late.

Rapid firing of the cool liquid shot at my face. My eyes blinked to adjust to the new brightness of the outside world. The sun was directly above us, hovering with its evil eye and relentless gaze. A scream escaped my lips as I headed to the hose at the side of our house. I took the fire, squirming my back as I turned the nozzle as fast as I could, picking up the hose and returning fire. With the squeal of my friends, one would have thought that he had died. He fell to the ground in a dramatic pose with his heart clutched and eyes rolled back. A smile was solid on his face.

I took my thumb off of the end of the hose and let it run smoothly. I couldn’t hear him laughing and he was incredibly still. I dropped the hose and rushed over to him, convinced that maybe I had actually hurt him. As I approached him and shook his arm, behind me a shot of water hit my back, cold and stinging with the pressure of a thumb behind the trigger.

Those are the things that I remember as I lay here dying. The wet liquid dripping from my wound, laying in the mud and thinking of my grandfather.

However, this is a story I will not be able to tell.

Mini-Profile thing?

Just a little about me?

Name : Amy
Nick Name : Panda, Domo, Pandomo
Birthdate : 09/02/1993
Birthplace : Tupelo, MS
Current Location : Southaven, MS
Eye Color : Hazel (changes in between more blue, green, or brown, though)
Hair Color : Brunette
Height : 4’11
Weight : 90 lbs
Piercings : Ears
Tatoos : None
Boyfriend/Girlfriend : Taken by Andrew <3
Vehicle : Nope
Overused Phrase : Dear Lord…
FAVORITES
Food : Sushi (Eel and Shrimp Tempura Roll)
Pub/Disc/Restaurant : Applebees
Candy : 100 Grand Bar
Number : Only if I know you ;o.
Color : Teal or a combination of red and gray
Animal : White Owl
Drink : Pineapple and Coconut Sparkling Water
TV Show : House MD
Actor/Actress : Robert Downey Jr.
This or That
Pepsi or Coke : Pepsi
McDonalds or BurgerKing : McDonalds
Chocolate or Vanilla Chocolate
Hot Chocolate or Coffee : Hot Chocolate
Kiss or Hug : Hug
Dog or Cat : Cat
Summer or Winter : Summer
Scary Movies or Funny Movies : Funny movies
Love or Money : Love
YOUR…
Bedtime : What bedtime?
Most Missed Memory : Drinking glass-bottled coke and scream-singing American Idiot in the car
Best phyiscal feature : Height
First Thought Waking Up : lolnope.
Ambition : Get my PHD
Strength : Intelligence
Weakness : Size
HAVE YOU…
Cheated Your Partner : Never!
Ever been beaten up : Dear Lord, yes…
Ever beaten someone up : In practice sparring, yes.
Ever Shoplifted : Stole a Spiderman Bandaid when I was 6. Just one. Never again.
Ever Skinny Dipped : Nope.
Ever Kissed Opposite sex : Yes.
Been Dumped Lately : Nope.
IN A GUY
Favorite Eye Color : Blue
Favorite Hair Color : Light brown / Mud blonde
Short or Long : Short, almost buzzed
Height : Average
Looks or Personality : Personality
Hot or Cute Cute
Muscular or Really Skinny : Toned
RANDOMS
What country do you want to Visit : Rome
How do you want to Die : I just want a peanut butter jelly sandwich in my stomach ..
Get along with your Parents : With my mom, yes.
Health Freak : Not really
Do you think your Attractive : Kinda? I dunno?
Believe in Yourself : Journey told me to, so I do.
Want to go to College : I am there now!
Do you Smoke : No
Do you Drink : Only have once.
Shower Daily : Of course.
Been in Love : Yes!
Do you Sing : Do you WANT me to sing?
Want to get Married : Yes <3
Do you want Children : No more than two!

Hey. I love you. I do.

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Why is she so cold?
Because, she doesn’t even know.
He begged Jesus for the sun
just to keep her warm.
He’s stepping over egg shells.
She doesn’t know she gives him hell.
With a steady heart, his soft hands
are wrapped around her innocence
striking all the keys just to hear her speak
One.
Word.

Why was she so cold?
Because, she didn’t even know.
He begged Jesus for the sun
just to keep her warm.
Flipping through old photographs
of bright smiles. They always laughed.
He’s striking all the keys just to hear speak
Three.
Words.

Why was she so cold?
Because, she didn’t even know.
He begged Jesus for the sun
just to keep her warm
He’s lost in her hazel eyes
She’s lost in his blue skies
He’s striking all the keys just to hear her speak
Two.
Words.

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