Sunday, January 31, 2016

Anime Review: One-Punch Man

One-Punch Man had been on my radar for a couple of years now. It has one of the weirder journeys from original material to anime adaptation, as well as being one of the more curious success stories that I’ve heard. It was originally a web comic created by an amateur manga artist going by the handle “ONE” in 2009. Though not exactly the prettiest comic ever created (ONE was literally just messing around with manga software for fun when making this comic) it ended up striking a chord with fans and soon went viral. It eventually came to the attention of professional manga artist Yusuke Murata, probably most famous to Americans as the artist for Eyeshield 21. Murata offered to redraw the web comic and publish it on Young Jump Web Comics in 2012. Since then the popularity of One-Punch Man has skyrocketed and millions of copies of the collected volumes have sold in Japan. As someone who has seen the original web comic believe me when I say how flipping crazy it is that One-Punch Man has gotten so big.

In 2015 an anime seemingly based more on the remake by Murata began airing. Produced by big time studio Madhouse and licensed by Viz Media in America One-Punch Man was actually simulcast in the US as it was debuting in Japan, which is something that has become more and more common in the last three years. I accidentally came across it on Hulu last Fall and nearly lost my mind, as I had no idea watching this show legally in this country was an option.

I’ll get more into this in the review itself but it’s important to note that One-Punch Man is a parody and there’s a lot of jokes and puns involved. But since I’m a dumb American (as are a lot of you, according to this blog’s stats) a lot of these go right over my head. One outstanding example we should all be aware of is that the name “One-Punch Man” is itself a pun based off the long running children’s picture book series Anpanman. This is apparently hilarious. If nothing else it automatically tells you exactly what tone you should expect when going into this one.

Anpanman's head is filled with bean paste or something?
I'm not sure because I'm not a Japanese child
Full review after the jump.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Beta's Top Ten Favorite Movies of 2015

So…yeah. I guess it’s been a year since I posted anything on this blog. This is awkward. There’s a reason, though I don’t think this is the place to discuss it. I may talk about it in detail at some point in the near future (or maybe I won’t post anything for another twelve months) but since it’s doubtful there’s any regular readers at this point it probably doesn’t matter too much right this second.

Instead today I want to continue a tradition of this blog; my Top Ten Favorite Movies list. I obviously didn’t review a single goddamn movie this year but I watched more flicks in 2015 than I had in years. And what a year it was for movies! There were so many great films this past year that it was not unlike sensory overload for me. I wasn’t able to see every movie that was out there so this list only focuses on what I was able to see. So, any fans of Spotlight getting upset that it’s not on the list are going to have to calm themselves down.

I will say that I did see The Hateful Eight and, while I enjoyed the heck out of the flick, it just barely didn’t make the list. Let’s think of it as #11 or an Honorable Mention. I also saw Jurassic World this past summer. Spoiler Alert: it doesn’t make the list, though if you need a good sleep aid I would recommend it.

Beta’s Top Ten Movies after the jump.
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