Anime, Conventions, cosplay, Other 0 comments on The Cosplayers of Otakon!

The Cosplayers of Otakon!

Hey there everyone! Otakon Vegas is over, and I am so exhausted, but the con was so much fun! Everyone there had so many amazing cosplays and I’m so happy and thankful for those of you that are letting me post them here on the site. The following gallery has every photo the Ashley’s Anime team took over the last few days! A special thank you to Clover Grayson and Adam Barba for all their spectacular help!

The convention was amazing, and we were all extremely excited to meet new people and have such a fun time. Honestly, I’ve never seen this many amazing cosplayers in one place! Some I’ve seen before at previous cons, others were completely new faces. Otakon Vegas was an experience I would advise to anyone, especially if you want to see some amazing cosplays! And, just in case you missed it, we also live streamed each of the three days on our new Facebook page!

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If you guys were contacted and given a card, but you don’t see your photo, feel free to message me and I will see if I missed anything! Also, check out my coverage on Las Vegas Informer. I look forward to next year and hope to see you guys there! The next convention our group is expecting to hit is LVL UP EXPO in May so please let me know if you are going and would like to have any photos taken!

Thank you to everyone and I hope you had just as much fun as we did!

Anime, Conventions, cosplay, Other 0 comments on Otakon Vegas ~ Get Ready!

Otakon Vegas ~ Get Ready!

Otakon Vegas 2017 is going to be here in Las Vegas this weekend and I’m ready to do this thing! I’ve been talking about this since Sabakon and I’ve never actually been to Otakon Vegas before so I’m excited for the opportunity to go!

I will be there to do coverage for another outlet, but while there I’m hoping to get some shots of cosplayers to feature on the blog exclusively! It’s not necessarily going to be an article, as my coverage for the con is exclusive to Las Vegas Informer (I will link the article on here) but I wanted to showcase cosplayers, as that is something Elliot and I are big on!

Please feel free to come up and say hi! Elliot will not be there, as he is just a baby and a cat, but I will have our business cards which do have his face on them so don’t be shy and feel free to take pictures of my cosplays as well!

On a side note, if you are a fellow anime blogger and you would like to work with me, exchange links to our blogs or have a project you’d like a fellow blogger to endorse/talk about with, or something completely different, don’t hesitate to come up and discuss it with me there! I will be happy to exchange contact information. You can also do this any time outside of the convention, as all my contact information is posted on the site.

Thank you guys for your loyal viewership, and I look forward to seeing you at Otakon Vegas 2017! 

Anime, Anime Review, Seasonal Anime 0 comments on Kaiju Girls – Review

Kaiju Girls – Review

An adorable monstrosity, I have to say this was a cute little anime that was easy to watch and even easier to enjoy. Even though these short, five minute anime confuse me a little (it’s gotta be tough pushing a story line into a five minute episode) I still found this to be like Pringles. Yeah, one chip isn’t going to be enough so you have to keep eating more in order to fill up your stomach, and your loneliness.

Too real? Too bad. Let’s get on with the review!

Their happiness is my happiness.
Don’t let your memes be dreams guys.

The Good:
For five short minutes, I found myself falling in love with the characters pretty fast. Miku is my absolute favorite! Not only that, but I can see their outfits being seriously adorable cosplays. If I don’t see one at Otakon I will be very upset; if you cosplay any of them I will ask for a photo and your first born. I have to commend creators who take on making small anime like this. For the length, there’s not really a lot you can do. While Kaiju Girls is in no way deep or meaningful, I never felt like I was wasting my time watching it.
It was certainly worth the watch and definitely cute. I think if anything, it was really nice to look at. It’s sort of like my expensive vase or trophy spouse in terms of anime; no, not a lot is going on and it’s not really worth as much as you’d think, but it’s nice to look at and fills my soul with purpose, even if for only a second.

The Bad:

I literally couldn’t get mad at this anime.

The biggest issue I’ve been having with short anime is that they don’t necessarily evoke anything in me. Kaiju Girls is certainly adorable and cute, but I never felt like I fully backed the girls on their decisions or their desires. I sort of felt indifferent to the story line and character struggles the entire season, and I feel like it didn’t have to be like that.

This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. When you keep in mind the time restrictions, I think it makes sense as to why you’re not really feeling anything towards the characters and their overall quests as people; you simply don’t have time to! It’s like when your teachers give you an essay where you get to actually write about your opinion. Sure, you have a good argument and you’re passionate, but do you really have the time to spend making it? Better yet, do you even want to spend the time to do it? I think not. And to be honest, I think this anime would only work as a five minute anime; any longer and it might not have been as good.

Kitty Rating:

I can never give small anime like this more than three Ellibum emojis; it really wouldn’t be fair when I think of other great anime that put a lot more story development and animation into their series like Izetta or knock-off Magi Madoka. That being said, I still think if you have the time you should watch this anime. It’s certainly cute, just like Elliot. And if you think Elliot is cute (which you all do, else wise you wouldn’t be here) you’ll think this is cute!

When you getting ready to go to the club with the squad…

What do you guys think of these short anime? Do you like them more than full length anime?

Anime, Anime Review, Seasonal Anime 1 comment on Kiss Him Not Me – Review

Kiss Him Not Me – Review

This is it guys. This anime threw dirty kitty litter in my mouth and called it pop rocks. That’s all I really have to say on the subject… Actually, that’s not true. I have a lot to say on the subject.

How do you even end up with this situation??? UM???

I personally did not like this anime in its entirety. I was actually surprised to see it had its good parts, but I found that there were other aspects of it that overshadowed the good and made it just downright a generic reverse harem with nothing new to add to the table. To make matters worse, it added some shallow attributes that it seemed to be teetering on as to whether or not it was going to fight for or against. It was overall an odd experience for me, one of the weirdest people to ever walk the dino lands.

The Good:

The only TRUE pairing.

The one thing I was pleasantly surprised to see that the humor wasn’t all poorly founded. In fact, there were a few parts that made me laugh pretty hard! While I didn’t agree with all the ways that this anime utilized its humor, I will say that it definitely had its moments were it didn’t make jokes to put down people. Rather, it was almost tasteful! It was like I ordered a good dessert at a greasy spoon.

I also loved Shima Nishina and Kazuma Mutsumi’s representation in the anime. In a lot of reverse harems I’ve seen, there’s usually never a girl being portrayed as a rival; if there is a female role, she’s usually not seen as a threat. But she was taken seriously by the other boys and she was legitimately caring towards Kae. Kazuma was a legitimate multi-sexual character who didn’t see gender at all (yes, I need more characters like this) and it was pretty fantastic to see! His younger brother was also one of my favorites. I was rooting for him after Shima simply because the two of them didn’t care what Kae looked like.

The Bad: 

It was no secret that I found Kae’s representation to not only be offensive, but also just awful overall. For character development, for story building, for really anything, I have to say it was just done in poor taste. From the way she talked when she was bigger to how she was drawn as “less attractive” it was clear the writers were taking a jab. What was confusing was that they had plots to consider whether or not her love interests would still like her if she was big; the answer to some being yes and others leaving us uncertain. I couldn’t tell if they were trying to make up for the representation given, but if so they should recognize there are other ways to portray plus-sized characters without making them seem goofy, unattractive or undeserving of love.

That aside, this was a classic reverse harem that ended exactly how other harem stories end. I really hoped, somewhere deep down in the caverns of my very soul, that there was going to be a definitive ending, but no. I got my hopes up yet again. Plus, it felt as though there wasn’t a lot of character development for some of the characters. It seemed like some drastic changes came for characters like Asuma or Yūsuke, but a lot of the other boys seemed to stay the same or they didn’t really grow much in comparison. You could see at the end when she showed her thoughts about each guy, it was sort of like this:

“Asuma is so sweet and charming; he’d help me finish my salad if I couldn’t eat all of it… He’s thought a lot of this through and knows what it means to be in love.”

“Hayato is… Trying his best.” 

Who even was this guy?

By far, there was a drastic difference and I think the creators could sort of see that by the end. I think some choices would have been obvious for her with no contest (Shima or Asuma) because they clearly fit better in terms of personality as well as their care for her without a thought on her appearance.

Kitty Rating:

Thanks but no thanks.

Okay so I can’t really overlook some of the issues this anime posed. And overall, despite having beautiful art and animation, I think the story as well as the development of characters was just poorly done. This greasy spoon just did not do it for me. I usually don’t mind reverse harems, but this one bugged me a lot for some of it’s clear tropes and downright rude humor. Elliot liked the boys though, they were pretty. And we were big fans of Shima; she was pretty fantastic. But I couldn’t, in good conscious, give this a better review. I would be lying to my demon overlords if I did.

What did you guys think about Kiss Him Not Me? Tell me in the comment section below!

Other 0 comments on Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays!

While me and the bum (Elliot) celebrated Christmas today, we wanted to take a moment to wish all our readers a happy holidays regardless of what everyone’s celebrating this time of year! And even if you’re not celebrating, we hope you have a lovely day!

The festivities were really awesome, though due to work I was unable to do any holiday anime fun, but next year I might be able to! In the meantime, we just wanted to thank everyone who has stuck with this blog so far.

It has been an honor to run this site and have you guys like the work we do here. Well, by we I mean me because Elliot just watches the anime, but you get what I mean. It’s been a lot of fun and even after major re-branding and a lot of other mishaps, it has still been a very fun year for Elliot and I in terms of running this blog. So for all of you supporting us, thank you.

We look forward to making a bunch of new content for you soon and all of the fun for the new year!

Happy Holidays,

Ashley and Ellibum!

Anime, Anime Review, Seasonal Anime 24 comments on Magical Girl Raising Project – Review

Magical Girl Raising Project – Review

What the hell even was this show? No, no… Please, someone explain to me exactly what I watched.

Right off the bat, the first thing I thought of was Magi Madoka, but by far more gorey and screwed up. I mean… The comparison was just uncanny. The design of the main girls was almost a copy of Magi Madoka in it’s entirety, but the roles they played and the personalities even solidified it or me. I was even worried that this would surpass one of my favorite anime of all time.

But no. At the end of the day I found this to just be a Madoka-parody slasher. And while there were many aspects I liked, but in the end I found it to not be as good or shocking as promised from episode one.

She was INNOCENT. She deserved HAPPINESS!!! ( ≧Д≦)

The Good:

THEY ALL DESERVED JOY EXCEPT SOME OF THEM! LIKE THOSE ANGELS AND SWIMMER’S EAR CHICK! (;`O´)o

I have to say, I really enjoyed the character designs for this anime. While they were extremely close to Madoka characters, I thought they still held merit as characters on their own and still were extremely cute. The art and animation for this show was really well down and I found myself rooting for a lot of the girls. Not to mention, to see Sister Nana and Winterprison as a couple was a big highlight for me. I think Winterprison was the first butch lesbian I’ve ever seen in an anime! She was amazing and I felt she was really well done.

I felt that the girls characters were pretty cool in their development. La Pucelle was something I hadn’t even thought of before, but I really enjoyed the idea of a boy being able to be a magical girl. I thought some of the story lines for the characters were overall progressive in their own right, even though the outcomes were not at all what I wanted, I still found a liking to a good majority of the characters overall. It was special in its own way. I guess I should put its drawings up on the fridge from now on.

The Bad:

Hardgore the Edgehog has returned to reclaim the throne.

I think the biggest issue I had with this anime was that it was basically just being gorey for shock value and not really story.  I feel like it’s unfair to compare it to Magi Madoka; it’s like comparing a younger sibling to their older, more talented and better looking sibling. But it’s really hard not to, this anime was going for too much of the same goals that Madoka achieved. Whereas the story line for Madoka went from innocent to showing how dangerous and scary it could be to fight witches, Magical Girl Raising Project simply wanted to pin magical girls together for slaughter factors.

Not only that, but there was so many girls. It was hard to get attached to any of them because you didn’t have enough time with the individual characters. For a good portion of the characters I liked, I found out more about them right before they were put to the bloodiest death imaginable. It made it really hard to get shocked about anything either; especially when you figure they’re all going to die. Alongside that, the main villainous magical girl gets killed far too early in the series. In fact, a lot of powerful characters do! I felt it would have been much better to keep those girls alive until the very end for a powerful or more tactful ending. I mean… Swim Swim? The girl’s name doesn’t even sound good let alone threatening.  

Kitty Rating: 

Let me try to explain this score. The angry Elliot goes for all the traumatic deaths I had to endure from day one; especially since the only girls I liked from this show died like right away. The perturbed Elliot is for how cliche the anime was and how it reminded me too much of Magi Madoka, but like, if Magi Madoka had decided lose its marbles and go ham on everyone. And finally, the amused Elliot was for the girls I did like, especially character designs. It was very appeasing to look at, it just wasn’t nearly as exciting as everyone made it out to be.

It was a little amusing to see who was going to be dropped for each episode, but after a while it just became a little too much. And it just felt like the wrong girls were staying alive until the very end. The whole thing was just… Off. But overall, it wasn’t the worst thing I watched. In fact, I thought it had some merit as entertaining, but please be careful because it really can get overwhelming. So I mean… I guess if it’s your thing… Watch it?

Kyubey was way worse, but this ^ was still annoying.

Which magical girl from Magical Girl Raising Project did you like best? Let me know! 

Anime, Anime Review, Seasonal Anime 0 comments on Izetta: The Last Witch – Review

Izetta: The Last Witch – Review

I almost got the anime I wanted. Almost. When I first announced that I would be watching this anime for review, I’d expressed how I really wanted to see it turn into a great queer anime for women; one made for queer women to enjoy rather than men. And while Izetta was definitely the one anime Elliot and I loved the most, out of almost all of the anime we watched this simulcast, it certainly disappointed me in a few aspects. It was kind of like when you think you’re going to eat a chocolate chip cookie and instead, after taking a savory bite, you find out it’s raisin.

She is the magical girl of my dreams!!! ♡♡+.゚(→ε←*)゚+.゚

It was not at all that Izetta was in any way bad, but it did fall short on some of the promises it seemed to be making throughout it’s show. I mean, maybe that analogy didn’t work if you really hate raisin cookies (I for one find them pleasant with gingerbread tea and Elliot on my lap) but think about something that is only mildly disappointing, but not unpleasant at all.

The Good:

SHE HAS THE POWER!!!

I loved this anime enough that it has now become one of my favorites. And while it does fall short in some aspects, I think it picks itself up more than anything else with its fantastic story and characters. I found myself really rooting for Finé and Izetta the whole time. And not just to get together either (because I really hope that’s a thing)! Their personal stories and their fight for their country was really well written, I thought.
The passion we see them give towards the war as well as their goals is not uncommon in anime like this. But the characters themselves really rejuvenate that trope and give the overall anime life. Alongside that, I think the relationship between Izetta and Finé was definitely a healthy queer relationship for an audience who hasn’t seen a healthy portrayal of themselves in anime in a while. While they never seem to be officially cannon, I do think they heavy hints at their love for each other is something important to take note of.

The Bad:

This is the raisin part. Unfortunately, we never see Izetta and Finé become cannon because nothing really happens to solidify this. There’s a lot of hugging, tearful eyes and passion that goes on between the two. And of course they say they have love for each other, but it seems to dance around whether or not this is a platonic love or a romantic love (which I think is important).

I love them. Innocent, pure, innovative, never been done before, inspirational, the stuff of life…

Make no mistake, I still would categorize this as a queer anime for the way the relationship is treated and portrayed, but from the research I’ve done, I’ve found nothing that really sets the relationship in romanticized stone. I hope the creators come out with something soon to say about this. But regardless, I’ve seen a lot of anime that have queer women but don’t specifically show their affections for each other in a way that isn’t pandered to men (and if it’s not to men than it’s not shown at all).

Kitty Rating:

I would say this is a fair rating! It may be a raisin cookie, but it’s my raisin cookie and I love it all the same! This was not a bad anime by any means and I think it is definitely a must-watch from this season. Elliot and I loved to watch this during the cold season as it helped warm us up; I think my cold-frosty heart actually beat for once! So despite its short comings, I think if you’re looking for something sweet to watch, watch this raisin cookie.

THE BEST THING EVER!

How many of you are buying the Izetta nendo coming out soon? I know I am! 

blog, Other 0 comments on Body Positive Anime Segments!

Body Positive Anime Segments!

Welcome back anime lovers! In an earlier post, I’d mentioned that we would be making a body positive series here on the blog! I’m here to announce that this will be a reality. But each episode will be a little different, so I’m going to tell you who’s currently going to be on the podcast for each of these episodes and how we are breaking them up!

The categories are:

  • Body Shape/Size: Becca Davila, Allison Wolch & Adam Barba
  • Disability: Dylan Wickersham
  • Gender: Dylan Wickersham & Adam Barba
  • Skin Tone: Becca Davila & Clover Grayson
  • Body Parts: Becca Davila, Allison Wolch & Dylan Wickersham

Some of these lovely people you may know from previous work done at Black Moor, which is where we host our own podcast as well. Becca has been on Ashley’s Anime before (granted, it was known as Geekery Gears back then) but she also voices Hattie on Bosh & Brave. Clover Grayson also voices Paige Hopkinson and Adam voices captain Alex Stranwood. If you’re unfamiliar with their work, you can check them out here!

Dylan and Allison also work with Black Moor, but on projects that are not out yet. Until then you’ll get to hear their awesome comments in this new series we’re producing. We honestly look forward to it as these topics are something we’re genuinely passionate about. We can’t wait for you guys to join us and listen in! As with last time, there will be an article component to each podcast but you should definitely take a listen!

Also, fair warning, with scheduling issues and other mishaps, this list is likely to change as we begin producing the series. So please stay tuned! Subjects may be added, dropped/fused with other and people may have to back out. Regardless, we will try to hit everything we can within this series. And if we don’t, it only means there’s room for next time!

See you then cuties!

If we missed something and there’s a topic you’d like to hear us discuss, leave it in the comment section below! 

Anime, blog, Other 0 comments on What Makes a Real Anime Fan?

What Makes a Real Anime Fan?

I think it’s a question most of us have thought of, especially when you’re just starting out. I mean, think about it, how do you know when you’re there? When will you be deemed a true fan? Will hooded figures come into your room in the middle of the night, blindfold you and take you down into some dark, unknown area and sacrifice your blood to the gods as a right of passage? What does it take?

Well fret no more, little weebs, because I’m going to tell you all about what it means to be a real, pure-blood anime fan. You think you got what it takes? Well, here’s the kicker:

You probably don’t, according to many of our fellow otakus.

We’ve all been to an anime club, a con or maybe even just out with some anime merch on and ran into the situation that’s going to make us question our loyalty to anime. It’s going to be that one bro who tells you, “You’re not a really anime fan if you’ve never seen [insert some really random anime that probably never got dubbed or subbed and is purely fan service]”. This may not be the exact wording, however the message remains the same. And what a shame right?

This is probably the worst experience of any young otaku’s life. And the more involved you are, not only in anime and the community itself, the thicker your skin becomes to things like this. Believe me, I bash on so many fandoms and often get my own fandoms bashed on; it’s pretty much the law of equivalent exchange. So if you’re new to anime, I welcome you to the basement because that’s where you’re going to be spending most of your time from here on out. It’s cold, wet and you have the option of either being immersed in shade or sitting on salt formations. Your choice.

I may not be the cuddliest mushroom in the cookie jar, but I can tell you now that these are the people, ironically, that are not good fans. They’re still fans, their hearts may be true, but they are not good ones. The answer to what a real anime fan is may just surprise you; it’s a person who likes anime. That’s it. That’s the answer.

People like to really go for the jugular on this one because we like to measure how big of a fan someone is. They will look for anything to take you down. You didn’t watch all of Naruto? Get wrecked, kiddo! Didn’t like S.A.O.? Yeah, well… No one really did, but the point is, it’s always the goal to be one step ahead of the other otaku to those mean fans. And that shouldn’t be how it is! We are a group of people who normally get criticized for even mentioning anime, let alone be super fans about it! We should be building each other up, supporting each other’s crappy shows no matter how much we hated Charlotte because it was jut X-Men in disguise…

Look, I love anime and I love the people. Don’t take this as a bash, but rather, something that really needed to be said. Don’t ever feel bad if someone’s figure collection makes yours look small in comparison (trust me, I have been there). Don’t feel like you’re a worse cosplayer just because the other person made theirs by hand and they are a professional seamstress from Czechoslovakia with diamonds in the fabric and human souls in every stitch. Don’t worry about it! These things, in the long run, don’t account for the way you celebrate your fandom and the way you get your geek on.

I’m gonna do that “basic yoga girl” (what even does that mean?) thing here because I think there’s a phrase that really embodies this well. It went something like, the presence of one person’s beauty is not the absence of your own. Well, same goes for fans. Just because the one bro watched all of Inuyasha does not mean that you aren’t a true fan because you could give less of a cabbage about watching furries with an attitude problem (and furries are fantastic people by the way, no hate will ever fill this blog regarding themnew_piskel__4__by_kyokomagika-d9qfjxa). Even if you don’t buy anime merch, go to cons or stay informed on anime-related happenings also does not mean you aren’t a fan. Being a fan means you enjoy the work the writers, artists, animators and entire studio put into a show. But being a good anime fan? It means helping each other out and being supportive no matter what differences you may find between you and another fan.

How are you a “real anime fan”? Tell me! tumblr_m9gcttgdyf1qzckow

Anime, check this out, links 0 comments on Check This Out

Check This Out

Midterms left me with very little time to blog and do the things that are important to me! But alas, with the love of the mighty Elliot, I pulled through and returned from war to my sweet, sweet lovers; my readers!

And yet, we cannot celebrate just yet. I know, what a shame! Two weeks of silence and I return to give you… What exactly? Another gorgeously composed list of links for you to enjoy! The last time we did this, I reminded you that it was time to get ready for school, but the semester is almost over which means it’s time to celebrate! And while we’re not quite in the Christmas season yet, here are some articles and gifts to treat yo self!

  • Japanator recently celebrated Halloween with some spooky anime series you should watch, even if the holiday is over. Couldn’t agree more with Sword Art Online. Not gonna say much on this one because once you read/watch it, you’ll understand. And I though I was the only meme in the journalist community.
  • I really liked this editorial on fairy tales in anime by Rebecca Silverman on Anime News Network. The article is long, but it is definitely worth the read, trust me. It’s got two things I love; fairy tales and anime. How can you miss on this one? You can’t. Read it.
  • I may be jumping on late, but I recently saw this new anime feminist website called… Er… Anime Feminist! As a GSS major, I highly recommend this blog to anyone who’s both a feminist and an anime lover. So far, I’ve loved the articles written and the discussions it’s had and I think this group of writers is really hitting some major topics. I urge you guys to follow this new site!
  • Before we go, we’ve got some stuff to buy! ‘Cause you know that if I had money I would have a serious problem! First off, I’ve been getting into Touken Ranbu -Online- recently and I gotta say, the figures for it are pretty amazing. I actually want to collect all if its nendos (which if you’ve seen my Instagram, you probably already know I have a problem). Regardless Orange Rouge is coming out with this lovely Monoyoshi Sadamune figure that I think you guys should pre-order!

Well, that’s all for now all you cute kittens! My hope is that, now that midterms are over, I will have a more regular schedule once again!

Have any links you want me to check out? Leave them in the comment section below! tumblr_me96whp1xs1qdlkyg