My Way or the Anime – The Thematic Failure of Taimadou Gakuen 35 Shiken Shoutai

Science versus magic. Uh, science is the glowing dragon monster in back. Really.

For fans of this anime—or in all likelihood, of the source material, since the anime has been rushed—I’m probably about to get into trouble. So let me make this clear: I’m not talking about whether the story of Taimadou Gakuen 35 Shiken Shoutai is good or not. I’m not talking about quality. I’m talking about whether it follows through with its central premise, i.e. that guns have taken over from swords and magic as The Most Powerful Weapons In The World™.

In case you haven’t guessed, the answer is no. It fails at its central theme, and here’s why.

My Way or the Anime – The Four Facets of Slice-of-Life

And the secret fifth facet, Minoru Shiraishi.

I’ve been doing a lot of writing for the upcoming season preview lately, and for a while it seemed like every show I was previewing was slice-of-life. I don’t know if there are more slice-of-life shows now-a-days or if I just picked every one of them to preview (which is likely), but in trying to figure out which shows to suggest to you, and for what reasons, I inadvertently came up with a framework by which to describe and/or judge slice-of-life shows. These are the four most common facets which modern slice-of-life anime and manga stories employ: atmosphere, characters, cuteness, and comedy, and a special fifth one, because I’m a cheater like that.

My Way or the Anime – OPs & EDs

I’m never too busy to reference six of my favorite shows in a single post.

I’ve been saving this post for a week when I was really busy, because I knew I would be able to write this one quickly. For those who have followed some of the series I’ve blogged, you will recognize this as an old rant, but I think it’s one worth expounding upon, or at least one I’ll enjoy talking about at length. Here’s the crux of my argument: anime studios should use every aspect under their control to enhance the story they’re telling, including two of the most frequently neglected elements, the OP and ED.

My Way or the Anime – Trainwreck Fantastic

It hasn’t gone completely off the rails yet, but it will. It’s coming. I feel it!

I’ve always had an affinity for a good trainwreck, which is something I know many people do not share. I think that’s a shame, because trainwrecks can be really entertaining. They may not have a good plot, relatable characters, a realistic setting, or to be honest, make any damn sense at all, but that’s okay because when it comes right down to it, they’re damn fun to watch!

Serious Business – Original IPs, Niche Markets, and the Risks & Rewards Thereof

Profit vor!

I have a feeling last week’s post is going to spawn a few follow-ups. While the main thrust of my point there was thoroughly explored, a few other subjects were raised that I think deserve further exploration. This week will be one of those.

Let’s talk about original series.