Anime Review Weekly: Sidonia no Kishi 1, Captain Earth 1-2, Ping Pong 1

Sidonia no Kishi anime
CGI mecha time.

Trying something different.
Sidonia no Kishi 1 Review
Captain Earth Episode 1-2 Review
Ping Pong The Animation Episode 1 Review



Due to the difficulty of writing decent length reviews for many shows and the amount of time it takes to do 40-60 pictures along with 700-100 words for just a single episode review, I’m going to resort to doing weekly reviews of shows that I want to talk about, but can’t do a detailed analysis/review on. Don’t worry, it’s not like I won’t be doing detailed episodic reviews when the time calls for it, but I think some of you would prefer me to give my stance on some shows that I would otherwise never touch upon. Sometimes there may be none of these posts, and sometimes there may even be 2-3. It’s an interesting experiment to see where this goes, and I’ve been meaning to do this for some time anyways. Feedback is very welcome! Let’s just get right to it.

Ping Pong The Animation Episode 1 Review

Ping Pong Tsukimoto Makoto

Are you this fabulous with your glasses?

Ping Pong Kong Wenge

Can you imagine a game of ping pong just by hearing sounds?
CAN YOU?!

Ping Pong The Animation

PROFESSIONAL MANDO POWER.

Kong Wenge

This guy is too cool.

Hoshino Yutaka

REKT.

The first striking aspect of this anime is its art style. I know some of you are going to compare it to Aku no Hana, and I wouldn’t blame you if you do. I’m not a proper judge of animation quality and so I won’t overstep my bounds. What I will comment on is the excellent mandarin by Bun Yousei, and how his character, Kong Wenge, begins to shape the anime quite nicely. In the beginning half of the series, the anime portrays with dialogue how Hoshino is pushing Tsukimoto against a wall which is basically the same as saying that Hoshino is stronger than Tsukimoto. However, the coach subtly comments that Tsukimoto is taking it easy, and more importantly, Kong Wenge makes it clear in the second half that Tsukimoto is actually going easy on Hoshino. We can guess how this is is not to embarrass his friend, but the critical thing to note here is the characterization of these three characters. Tsukimoto is quiet, but he’s sly. Hoshino is earnest, but a bit too overconfident in his own abilities. Kong Wenge plays ping pong without holding back which displays his passion for the game and his fearsome attitude. He’s confident, but he understands where he stands and what he deserves. You can begin to see how the character dynamics within this show will be one of its most interesting and strongest points as they struggle to become the best. Whether it be intense rivalry, crushing defeats, or moments of victory, there’s a lot to look forward to in this anime if you’re looking for some nice character conflicts with ping pong as the backbone to those conflicts. The animations may be offsetting to some, but since I’m one who is a bit too accepting to whatever animation style an anime throws out for my own good, I’ll be keeping a close eye on how the characters grow and what role Wenge will play in this anime.

Captain Earth Episodes 1-2 Review

Amara libido charge

Yep. It’s from the creators of Star Driver alright.

Kiltgang moco

Dude.
Calm your tits.

THAT’S SOME HARDCORE STUFF RIGHT THERE.
IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN.

Captain Earth mecha

Glorious animations.

Manatsu Daichi

LIBIDO OVERDRIVE.

I like this guy.

AND THIS CUTE POKEMON.

Captain Earth kiss Amara and Moco

LIBIDO CHARGING…

Oh God.
This guy again.

SUMMONING THE LIBIDO.

Mutou Hana anime

Would you?

DEEP CONTRAST FROM THE PREVIOUS EPISODE.
2DEEP4U.

With the innuendos that you’d expect from the creators of Star Driver comes Captain Earth. Penetration and deflowering imagery with high-density libido charge is just what I need in my mecha anime. That aside, everything has been extremely standard so far. The presentation of the antagonist, the suppression towards Mutou Hana and Arashi Teppei, the mysterious characters behind the scenes, and so on are what you’d expect from a typical mecha anime. The aspect that did surprise me is actually the main character, Manatsu Daichi. His lively and proactive behavior is a nice breath of fresh air compared to some others. *COUGH*HARUTARD*COUGH* Aside from that, the expansion sequence really does show off BONES’ animations quite well and was an absolute delight to see. I expected nothing less. While the show has yet to show much of its deeper themes, the one that’s most clearly identifiable right now is the idea of being a captain and the responsibility that comes with being one. As such, we’ll probably see just how Manatsu Daichi will develop going through the trials of being a captain by facing the Kiltgang. It looks like this show will have a monster of the month for now, but I really do hope for the sake of the show that it doesn’t get stuck on this format for too long as that was one of the ways Star Driver lost its captivation for me even with all the fabulousness.

Sidonia no Kishi Episode 1 Review

The framerate here is just…



Now no one will ask about how he knows how to pilot when he’s a complete newbie. He’s not.

Sidonia no Kishi opening

ANGELA OP HYPE.

Framerate is choppy when he climbs up as well.

Shizuka Hoshijiro

WHY HELLO THERE. I’M JUST FALLING FROM THE SKY DON’T MIND ME.
(She’s going to get horribly killed, isn’t she?)

She wants you.

Some CGI sexy time wouldn’t be bad now and then.

This part has pretty low framerate too.



Wow.

And this part has probably the worst framerate in the whole episode. When he looks left it’s literally 4-5 frames in between.

The soundtrack complements this so nicely. It feels like I’m playing EVE.

SPACEDILDOSHIP.

Hopefully they use more of the cockpit view. It looks pretty nice.

Sidonia Tanikaze Nagate

2CGI4U.

Knights of Sidonia Gauna

LET ME EAT YOUR FACE.

Alright, the CGI is probably going to be the central focus for many people’s criticism for this first episode so I’ll address that right away. I am very tolerant towards whatever animation style a show wants to throw at me as I mentioned above. CGI is no exception. I finished Aoki Hagane and thought that the CGI made the action sequences quite good. However, with that said, Sidonia no Kishi’s CGI distracted me quite a bit throughout the first episode. No, it’s not because of the style of the CGI. It’s because of the framerate. I highlighted some parts in the show that had very low framerates for me in the pictures above. It felt like I was watching a show with 6-12 frames per second instead of the standard 23.976 fps. It’s strange because it happens for some scenes and it doesn’t happen for others though a lot of the time it still feels very choppy. I’ve tried different versions of this first episode and I had the same results for those parts and many others. If it’s somehow my video player or my computer, please do let me know in the comments. I hope it is fixed when the Blu-ray comes out as that was something I could not overlook at all and hindered my enjoyment quite a bit. Other than that, I’m perfectly fine with the CGI.



As for the actual premise and setting, it really does feel like Shingeki no Kyojin in space. I don’t mean that in a bad way either. It creates a sense of urgency with this first episode much like how Shingeki no Kyojin did it with its first episode. The question is, how dark will this series get? The show could easily become more bleak once more people start dying to Gauna and humanity becomes more threatened by it. At the same time, the setting itself creates this sense of awe within me because, well, they are in space after all with a giant ship and aliens. The society itself doesn’t ooze this grim atmosphere like Shingeki no Kyojin did, but then again, things have only just started and the tone of the show could quickly change. If it weren’t for the framerate issues, I would have very much enjoyed the visual presentation of this episode as it works well with a space setting. The cockpit view is especially nice and I don’t know if they could have done the same with regular animations without a lot more budget. Also, when the mechs came out of Sidonia, it kind of felt like I was playing EVE Online. There’s just this sense of scale that’s difficult to capture with any other setting and I think it works wonders for the show. Not to mention the soundtrack (DAT OPENING) complements that so well. The major role of the first episode is to captivate the audience, and Sidonia no Kishi did a wonderful job of that with its interesting premise and usage of its setting. If you can handle the CGI, then strap on. This could be one hell of a ride.

Captain Earth Anime Wallpaper

NO SPOILERS PLEASE!!!

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  • MACHA

    I like this new style. Short, sweet and to the point.
    And very useful since I haven’t checked out any of these (or even started watching JoJo yet. OMG WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?!)

    I’ll pass on Ping Pong, The art style is waaay worse Aku no Hana. While Aku wasn’t great, I wasn’t bothered by it and really worked for me.

    Other than that, I’m definitely going to watch Captain Earth. Sidonia sounds very awesome if it’s like Attack on Titan but in space. I’ll give it a few more weeks to see how it does.

    Thanks for the reviews!

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      Thanks for reading!

  • James Du

    I liked Sidonia. It reminded me of Homeworld.

    So I read the manga.

    My god. It hurts. Wryyy?!?!!

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      Oh yeah! Homeworld! It does remind me of that as well.

  • niknasr

    I have watched both from the three shows mentioned above and guess what? ping pong is the one that left out, I heard that this anime is good but I certainly don’t have much free time to watch it with the already many anime I decided to watch this season, the odd art style didn’t help either..

    For Captain Earth Ep 1, I just in awe, certainly not because I’m amaze but rather wtf? is going through my mind but the story and its execution in this particular ep that somewhat have a strong attraction that pull me back to the story, waiting for next ep..

    Sidonia no Kishi, asides from that CG crap, it was a good ep, it certainly have dark atmosphere which never really my kind of genre, I will see how long I will put up with this one..

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      Can’t get enough of the LIBIDO BOOST.

  • *v*

    Hmm I didn’t notice anything off with Sindonia no Kishi so I checked my media info & my mine was playing at 23.97 frames per second. O:

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      The media info will always have 23.976 fps. It doesn’t feel and look even close to that kind of framerate in some parts.

  • zztop

    Sidonia’s mangaka,Nihei Tsutomu, is well-known for his signature megastructure drawings in all his works, a carryover from his architectural studies. (ie. the architectural sprawl of Sidonia). As a writer of cyberpunk-postapocalypse themes, he’s got a fan following in Germany and has produced quite a few manga of his own.
    Sidonia’s source manga came out a few months before Titan, so technically Sidonia is Titan’s senior. However, Isayama Hajime seems to have struck a bigger popularity goldmine with his only debut work compared to the more experienced Nihei.
    Re Mahouka: Bossest OP of the season!!! It had better hit mainstream status in Japan!

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      Thanks for the information. I love the sense of scale that comes with the series so hopefully he’ll expand even more upon that.

      It’s Mahouka and LiSA. I’m pretty sure it’ll sell well.

  • Irenesharda

    Well, after finally getting to see the first episode, this show actually rose pretty high on my list. Unlike Aoki Hagane, the CGI of this didn’t distract me as much as I thought it would. I think the plot and the grand scale of things just really got to me. I’m really liking the world building here, as well as the MC and side characters. The idea of 3rd gender is rather weird as well as the fact that people now do photosynthesis, but okay, I’ll roll with it.

    The space scenes are beautiful and the fights are really nice. The OP and ED are absolutely awesome and will be going in my music library. I already like it more than Captain Earth and It’s so far my favorite mecha of the season. I’m interested to see if M3 will top it though.

  • Flaiboy

    I enjoyed Sidonia. I just finished the first episode and for me it was an
    effortless watch. Before I knew it the ED was rolling. Thank goodness a
    competent sci-fi anime! I didn’t have any trouble with the CG for some
    reason.

    For me it gives off a vibe similar to what a combination
    of Ergo Proxy and GITS might produce. Maybe that’s why I like it so
    much. It introduced a fair number of questions without cramming the
    dialog with non-stop cliches, unlike Capt. Earth where I felt lost at
    the half way point. I just hope Sidonia keeps it up!

  • Akizaki Ranho

    Definitely will be completing Ping Pong and Knights of Sidonia. If an anime sets a mood don’t care what it looks like. And these two shows did that pretty well…
    Captain Earth…well, unlike Star Driver I DID make it to the second episode, there’s that. But not really a fan of these types of “make it up as we go along” style shows (common mostly to mecha anime, funny that, mostly common to BONES’ work such as Xamd, Rahxephon, Wolf’s Rain, Eureka Seven and co, also funny that).
    Ping Pong’s vibe was cooler than a high-school dropout (you know, too cool for school?)

  • George Ivascu

    For me Sidonia this season first episode i loved it. Angela alone makes this soundtrack awesome enough to ignore the choppy frames . I loved the mechas and please dont compare this with Shingeki no Kyojin , target audience seinen vs shounen are not “similar”

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      Whatever you say, the premise of this anime is incredibly similar with that of Shingeki no Kyojin’s. Even the tone is quite similar, and while that may change, that doesn’t mean I’m unjustifiably calling it “similar.” Targetting a different audience doesn’t mean that two shows are so radically different that they cannot be compared especially from the first episode.

  • Emiru

    Please no comparerino with Shingeki no Kyojin.
    Might be reminding of it, that’s most likely because of Hajime Isayama being a Tsutomu Nihei admirer, but for god’s sake it’s two completely different animes.

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      What’s wrong with saying two shows’ premises are similar? I don’t get why people want to differentiate Sidonia no Kishi and Shingeki no Kyojin to this degree. All I said was that the premise and tone are similar. Am I wrong? Obviously, I won’t make comparisons later on because it’s pretty obvious that they’ll be different, but you can’t possibly deny that the two are quite similar from the first episode. Don’t make me comment about how their initials are even the same, jeez. >.>