Reviews

DBZ Kai Episode 01 Review

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Episode 1, "The curtain opens on battle! Son Goku's back"

*****SPOILERS*****
Synopsis: A man named Son Goku, a young hero who was born "Kakkarot" on the planet Vegeta, home of the Saiyans, and was sent to Earth, visits his old friends on Kame Island. Along with him is his son, Son Gohan, named after the man who raised him. However, an armored man from space lands, looking for "Kakkarot", scaring even the demon Piccolo, and showing up before Goku and his friends.

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Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood - Episode 01 Review

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Episode 1, "The Fullmetal Alchemist"

*****SPOILERS*****

Synopsis: A man named Isaac McDougal is terrorizing Central, the capital of Amestris, with his use of water alchemy, heating it up to burn his victims or freezing it to freeze them alive. The President, Fuhrer King Bradley, puts Colonel Roy Mustang in charge of capturing Isaac, who fought alongside him in Ishbal. Mustang calls on the help of the Elric brothers, Edward (the "Fullmetal Alchemist") and Alphonse. Isaac plans to kill the Fuhrer using his ice alchemy, which is boosted by a Philosopher's Stone, but it is the Fuhrer who ends up killing him, and the stone in him dissolves before the miltary has a chance to check.

Fullmetal Alchemist Manga vs First TV Series - ROUND FOUR

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Fullmetal Alchemist Manga vs First TV Series - ROUND FOUR

In the original manga, Edward is "rescued" by the homonuculi from Laboratory 5 after sustaining injuries in the fight with the Slicer Brothers and given into military custody. In first animated television series, however, the homunuculi attempt to get Edward to use the red water and live prisoners to transmute a Philosopher's Stone. This is the beginning of some of the bigger differences between the anime and the source material.

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Chapter 13: Fullmetal Body

Event(s): Ed is confronted by the homonuculi, who kill the Slicer brothers, and knock him out, then destroy the laboratory. Ed is brought into military custody by Ross and Brosch.

Episode 21: The Red Glow/Episode 22: Created Human

Fullmetal Alchemist Manga vs First TV Series - ROUND THREE

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Fullmetal Alchemist Manga vs First TV Series - ROUND THREE

The third volume of the FMA manga covers the Elric brothers' trip back to Risembool to get Edward's automail arm fixed (it was destroyed by Scar), the research at Central's library into the Philosopher's Stone, and most of the Laboratory 5 incident. The first animated series stayed pretty faithful to this portion overall.

EVENTS:

Chapter 9: A Home with a Family Waiting

Event(s): Edward, Alphonse, and Major Armstrong visit Resembool, the Elric's hometown, to get his automail and Alphonse fixed.

Episode 17: "House of the Waiting Family"

Event(s): Edward, Alphonse, and Major Armstrong visit Resembool, the Elric's hometown, to get his automail and Alphonse fixed.

Judgement: Rather poignant in both versions, but slightly more subtle in the anime one.

MANGA

Fullmetal Alchemist Manga vs First TV Series - ROUND TWO

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Fullmetal Alchemist Manga vs First TV Series - ROUND TWO

In this round, I'll cover comparisons between chapters 4-8 and the episodes that correspond to the events in them. It's in this volume of the manga, volume 2, that Scar first appears and menaces the State Alchemists, and it all happens in "present" time, meaning none of it in a flashback like in the anime. The incident where Ed gets his automail broken by Scar comes shortly after the Tucker incident. In the first series, the Tucker incident occurs in a flashback, so chronologically, Scar's main attack in Central doesn't occur until around the time Ed and Al encounter Dr. Marcoh. Also, Marcoh isn't killed shortly after the encounter by Lust and Gluttony in the manga like in the anime.

Fullmetal Alchemist Manga vs First TV Series - ROUND ONE

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Fullmetal Alchemist Manga vs First TV Series - ROUND ONE

Hiromu Arakawa's long running manga, Fullmetal Alchemist, has had the luxury of not only being extremely popular both in Japan and here in the U.S., but recieving two anime adaptations. The first was helmed by director Seiji Mizushima in 2003, and ran for 51 episodes. The second will air this year, helmed by Yasuhiro Irie. The two series were/are productions of Studio Bones, known for its high quality productions.

Who watches the Watchmen movie? I did.

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A few thoughts on the Watchmen movie (having just seen it today):

- The movie basically got the main players right. My only issue with their depictions are the Ozymandias comes off as being much more villianous than he should be and Rorschach more heroic and noble, even despite the brutality displayed.

- On the same note, much like Ozy, the movie misses out on some of the ambiguity of the novel. Things which are supposed or thought are shown to be blatently true. It's sort of like any adaption of Lolita, because your narrator is unreliable, and for a large space of the comic, your narrator is a paranoid sociopath.

- There are little bits here and there that were fan favorites that were altered or weren't there, almost as if to show the fans it was different. It irritated the hell out of me, but I understood. At least Rorschach got that bit in about the Pagliacci joke.

Quantum of Solace Left Me Shaken, Not Stirred

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*SPOILER WARNING*

I just came back from watching Quantum of Solace. I've been a huge Bond films fan for several years, having watched most of them three or four times, or where great, possibly more. Granted, not all Bond films are created equal, though they may seem like it to the untrained eye, the casual fan. This is okay. It's all right if the Bond movies are just an enjoyable romp with gadgets and villains for you. It's all right not to expect much from them, because you likely haven't looked at them as any more than action films. But, for me, I've become somewhat more selective. And so, for the past few Bond movies, I've been somewhat unimpressed.

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