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Central Park's "Anime Test Drive" Might Need a Tune-Up

U.S. Manga Corps and Central Park Media have been trying something new recently: a line of single-episode, trailer-packed DVDs to give viewers (as the title suggests) an “Anime Test Drive.” So you not only get to take one episode of a series for a spin around the block, you get to kick the tires on […]

".hack//SIGN" Ends in an Explosive Finale

Those who followed the intricate and dramatic .hack//SIGN on Cartoon Network last year were treated to a rich plot based on a massive multi-player online RPG (MMORPG). It’s a franchise that that went on to become a series of games for the Playstation 2, a manga, and a separate series: .hack//Legend of the Twilight Bracelet, […]

Let Garfield Be Garfield!

When I was a kid, one of my favorite cartoons was Garfield and Friends. So when I heard they were going to make a feature movie, I cheered. Then I found out it was going to be live-action–time to go into cringe-mode. Then I heard that Jim Davis, the creator of Garfield, would be overseeing […]

Grrl Power: Cute Candy Shell on the Outside, Great Anime on the Inside

The world is chock-full of hyper-saccharine, obscenely cute anime. However, Grrl Power distances itself from the pack with genuine humor and a small of dash of pathos. Created, directed, and storyboarded by Akitoroh Daichi (who directed the cute yet bittersweet Fruits Basket, Kodocha, Jubei-chan, and Animation Runner Kuromi, and also wrote the manga that Grrl […]

"Fruits Basket (Vol. 2)" Mixes Into a Wonderful Smoothie

Fruits Basket Volume 1 (previous review) was a great DVD: Six episodes of a terrific story packaged with good extras. Does Volume 2 keep it up? Oh yeah. In fact, this one may be even better. The background: After her mother died, Tohru Honda ended up living with the Sohmas. (Kyo’s the brash one, Yuki’s […]

"Azumanga Daioh" Animated Goodness

High school comedic anime are a dime-a-dozen, so to speak. There are almost as many high school anime as there are giant robot anime. So, if it’s to stand out from the crowd, it’s got to be something that separates it from the garbage. It also has to be, you know, funny. If you do […]

Three-Disc "Spider-Man" Set Fails To Please

Sony has decided to unleash two different double dips for their favourite cash cow, Spider-Man. This release is the same two-disc set which first saw the light of day way back in September 2002, but Sony has added exclusive third disc. In an effort which was presumably aimed to annoy thier fanbase, a Superbit of […]

Hugh Jackman plays Vampire Hunter D in "The London Assignment"

The latest movie tie-in anime, Van Helsing: The London Assignment, is a worthy prequel to the new Hollywood feature. While the reviews have not been overly kind to its big brother, London Assignment crafts a simple but quite thrilling tale. Not obviously an anime production and not quite a feature, animation fans might better imagine […]

"Triplets of Belleville": From Tour de France to Visual Tour de Force

Sometimes a movie comes along that is just so far out there that it defies description. Puni Puni Poemy for one. If Sylvain Chomet’s Triplets of Belleville does not go quite so far off the deep end, it definitely is a serious curve ball. Nearly unconventional to a fault, this fascinating French animated film lost […]

"Cardcaptor Sakura": The Sealed Card Also Seals the TV Dub Away

Cardcaptor Sakura is yet another anime with a troubled US history. When it aired on Kids WB, the series was aired out-of-order, the voice cast sounded older than they were supposed to, and the series tried to focus more towards Li than Sakura. Though the original Japanese version was released separately, fans still wished for […]

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