Nagaru Tanigawa’s Suzumiya Haruhi franchise needs no introduction and it won’t get one. The same goes for KyoAni’s movie adaptation of the fourth book, Disappearance; it hasn’t received nearly universal acclaim for nothing. Instead of informing you that the film is good, as you’ve no doubt already discovered for yourself, I’d rather dig into it and attempt to figure out why it’s good. Fasten your seatbelts—we’re heading into closed space and it might be a rough ride.

Note: This post is longer than it should be so I split it into two—the second half can be found here.


Ringing in 2011 with… a post

by eternal on January 1, 2011

(This is the first picture I saw when I clicked on my image folder and I figured, hey, why not.)

2011 has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?

Well, no, it really doesn’t. 2010 is much easier to say and it looks cleaner when written; the 0’s create a sense of symmetry and it doesn’t force you to type the same letter twice in a row, like a jackhammer pattern in a rhythm game.

I suppose what I really want to say is that a new year is here, and that this is probably a good thing. Like all students, life revolves more around the school year than the calendar year for me so I’m not feeling particularly sentimental. Luckily for me, this year’s resolutions are hardly an issue since I wrote a bunch of them last year, and just to prove that I’m not the kind of person who says things and forgets about them, I’m going to go through that list–one by one–and evaluate my progress. Let’s hope I didn’t fail!


Sorry, this was the best screencap I could find.

Aside from its infamous anime adaptations by Shaft, ef – a fairly tale of the two is known primarily for one thing: aesthetic appeal. As NNL’s staff have joked, the game is indeed very pretty and shiny. It’s visually stunning in every possible way, surpassing even Wind – a breath of heart, which was astounding compared to other 2002 eroge releases (take a look at this vs Da Capo or even Utawarerumono). With designs by Naru Nanao and backgrounds by someone who apparently knows how Makoto Shinkai does his thing, it’s no wonder that the game is a beauty.

However, as video games have taught me, it’s important to remember that the aesthetics of ef aren’t just the icing on the cake. In addition to its high-quality art is a unique stylistic approach to the visual novel medium that has a notable impact on the presentation of the narrative.


Saint October and the Goth Loli Detective Agency

by eternal on November 14, 2010

I wish this post title was only for the sake of getting your attention, but no, that’s actually what they call it.

Saint October is the kind of show that, by and large, flies by unnoticed to all but its target audience. Some may remember it from its run in 2007, but outside of that, it seems that only the serious moe fans with too much time on their hands bother to pursue it – and bother to complain that it has yet to be fully subbed. (As an aside, I’ll be subbing the remainder of the series with my friend, so keep an eye out if you’re curious).

At any rate, the show got me thinking about my old opinions on Cardcaptor Sakura and innocence in the magical girl genre, and seems that I’ve stumbled into a slight variation that’s amusing in its own way. Believe it or not, Saint October isn’t quite what it looks like.


An update of potential importance

by eternal on October 22, 2010

The rumours of my death have been- no, no, I won’t go there.


Playing with Pathos; Narcissean Tragedy

by eternal on September 25, 2010

Narcissu holds quite a reputation among English-speaking visual novel fans – it was the first encounter with non-branching VNs for many of us, and its particular brand of tragedy is significantly different from what we might remember from the Key anime adaptations. From the time of the translation’s release to now, it’s become an icon of heart-wrenching storytelling that every newbie stumbles into and invariably sheds tears at. I played the first game back when I was first introduced to the medium, but after reading through the second story a few years later, I found a few key points that differentiate the franchise from the other tales of terminal illness that are only superficially similar.