Akagami no Shirayuki-hime

Yes, my prays have been answered in the form of  Akagami No Shirayuki-hime. A fantasy driven anime with a kick-ass female character. This is want I need while I wait for  Soredemo Sekai and Akatsuki no Yona seasons 2. ( that red hair). Shirayuki like her predecessors from the above series, stands for  a group of female characters rarely presented in this media: the strong female character. Another unique thing about her is that she is a herbalist, who continues to better herself through learning. Some similar practitioners who spring to mind include Tanda of Seirei no Moribito and, to a certain extent, Yun of Yona.  Similar to Yona’s world, Shirayuki’s red hair is  rare; this makes her stands out  in her travels and caused her some problems. The fact that she is working  class makes it easy for people to approach her, but also take advantage of her.

In the start of the series, Shirayuki becomes the object of desire for the prince and ends up abandoning her practice and home to avoid his advances. The bravery it takes to go out on her own is already impressive, and when we later see her confront the second prince and his bodyguards, we again see that she is not one to be restrained by fear. With one hard smack of her own arm, she convinces both the viewer and Prince Zen of her good character.

This series is not your typical romance series, where one of the MC falls in love with the other and tries to win their heart throughout the series, No!!! Shirayuki steps onto the plate and want to improve herself, so she can stand alongside prince Zen. There is clearly love between the two, but they don’t take it over the top, and shows respect for each other.

Charlotte

In every story, it is a wonderful to discover that you are special- be the ability to use magic,  or talk to animals – is held in high esteem, especially upon discovery. There is a reason why, after all who doesn’t want to leave the world of limitation and cardboard that is reality?

Who doesn’t want to be special?

Yet, as with the law of Equivalent Exchange, one will have to pay the price of becoming special. The world is strange, the normal wants to be special while the special desires the mundane. In both media and young adult literature have the problem of often misses the tug and pull between the two. How can you appeal to the desire to be special with the hardships a youth faces from being special?

Charlotte is a show about teenagers with powers. Like it predecessors, these powers are in the form of blessing and curses. However, the show adds a few twists to its characters.

First, the powers come with a specific restrictions or rules unlike their complete counterparts in other fantasy shows. Yuu Otosaka can possess others, but only for five seconds. Nao Tomori can become invisible, but only to one person at a time. Joujirou Takajou can teleport, but can’t control where he stops.

The important part is the powers come with puberty and disappear with it.

As any teenager knows, puberty is a difficult time, with mode swings, raging hormones and identity crisis. Adding weird powers to the mix, makes learning to live and accepting one- self that much harder.

However, Charlotte doesn’t stop there. It adds serious repercussions for the special kids who are caught by scientists and subsequently turned into human lab rats.

Here’s where it becomes impossible to ignore the pedigree of Charlotte. The series’ writer, Jun Maeda, is infamously known for co-founding Key/Visual Arts and penning many of the company’s visual novels – Air, Kanon, Clannad, and Little Busters among others – along with the more recent Angel Beats!. All of these aforementioned series dabble in the melodramatic and the supernatural, often leading to the lead character’s, or one of the heroines’, untimely demise. One comes to anticipate death in Maeda’s works more often than not, to the point where they’re expected catalysts for the player character or protagonist. Naturally, for some viewers, this causes death to lose its dramatic weight.

Angel Beats! took a slightly different tack, placing its characters in the afterlife already. There, the concern became disappearing or passing on from the limbo-like setting. Much like previous Key works, there is a distinct lack of adults, leaving the adolescents to figure things out on their own without guidance. Charlotte takes this a step further, making all known adult authority figures the enemy: potential agents of scientists that would ruin the teens’ lives.

This effectively makes the world of Charlotte, especially the supernatural school that Yuu, Nao, and others attend, one isolated from adults. Whenever a new talent is discovered, it’s all up to the kids to suss out who it is and convince them of their impending plight. There are silly moments, and the teens of Charlotte are conveniently allowed to run free – as of the series’ third episode – allowing the supernatural elements of the series to both shine and take a backseat when necessary.

The world of Shimoneta

Can You survive in a world without dirty jokes? I Started the anime Shimoneta and it got me thinking, can I live in such a world? Censoring is not a new thing with Japan, the blurring of private parts( Yes, I watched Hentai), steamy baths, placement of objects, beams of lights, black beams, and stickers–we’ve seen the extent to which what’s implied is never fully shown . But, What happens when this is taken to a new level? Welcome to Shimoneta, a dystopian future where all indecent contents are burned, destroyed, and everything you say or do is monitored by electric chockers. They even go as far as to ban sex education. This is a new country that plans to uphold their moral’s conduct while raising a new ignorant generation of youth. This is something only Japan and anime can do.

The MC goal to live a wholesome life is changed by the terrorist  Blue Snow. The MC and Blue have similar personality, sense of humour and upbringing,  but chose to walk different paths. As much as I agree with Blue Snow’s idea of re-educating the populace, I also sympathize with Tanukichi’s shift away from the acts of his father.

Can you survive in this world without dirty jokes?

Joukamachi no Dandelion

If the world royalty and heirs were as down to earth and sensible as the  Sakurada family; the world will be a better place. Dandelion takes the teachings of giving heirs and royalty a “normal” lifestyle to teach them life’s value to the extreme. The entire family lives life as any “normal” with the 9 children all attending public school,   have middle-class home—with a horrifying single bathroom. The Castle and crown is only needed when their father the king goes to work. The main focus of the shows, however, is the daily routines of the nine children. In particular the fourth princess, Akane. Akane has only one fear in her life, and it is public embarrassment. This is the focus for a lot of the show’s humour. Why you asked? Well, the shows has two little twists: first,  each and every moment outside of the home and castle is televised for the public’s entertainment; second, royal family members have magical powers distinct to each one of them.

Putting all three elements together gives the shows full of laugh and coupled with the fact that the king is democratic , and decides to have a an re-election to pick the next king makes this a one of a kind slice of life.