D&A Breakdown: Plot Driven vs. Character Driven (in Anime)!

When it comes to anime a lot of us within the community like certain titles just a little bit more than others. Let’s face it; not all anime is created equally, and depending on what you’re looking for in whatever genre suits you, you might be into one of the following two things; a show driven by its plot, or a story driven by its characters. It’s very hard to find a show that contains an equal balance of both (if there is one or more let us know), as if you have one, the other usually ends up suffering. Our tastes in anime changes overtime, but one thing’s for sure…we know what we want to see. (And so does Japan.)

Before we dive further into this post, we’re letting you guys n’ gals know, that we’re just comparing and contrasting between anime that is plot driven, and anime that is character driven. If you think about all of the anime you’ve watched as well as all of the manga you’ve read, have you ever thought about what the artist’s (or creator’s) main focus was? This is one of the most critical questions they have to ask themselves when creating these wonderful worlds and dynamic characters for their audience and the rest of the world to see.

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When its about the plot, a couple titles come to mind…

Plot Driven

A story that is plot driven can be best summed up like this; a plot is a sequence of events that are connected by cause and effect. Plot driven stories are usually fast-paced and place the characters in positions where they have to solve problems and figure out ways to escape a deadly situation, or figure out how to solve a puzzle that may lead up to another plot point in the story later on.

There are a lot of anime titles out there that take on the plot-driven approach, leaving character development as a secondary element to the story. The choices made by the characters of a plot-driven story will advance the overall plot of the story itself, but depending on what type of story it is, it could lead to potential consequences for some of the characters should they find themselves making risky and unfavorable decisions.

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The prince has come a long way…

Character-Driven

A story that is character-driven is more focused on the characters than the actual complexity of the plot. This simply means that the artist or creator is 100% focused on character development; such as the dynamic relationships between certain characters, as well as the inner transformations and epiphanies they may have about themselves. Just like with plot-driven stories, character-driven ones focus on how the character arrives at a particular moment within the plot. The plot in these types of stories is what develops the character.

Take Vegeta for example; back in the first season of Dragon Ball Z his character was bent on arriving to Earth with Nappa, and killing everyone on it due to the fact that Kakarot (Goku) did not when ‘he’ first arrived on Earth. Since then he’s become a family man and has a much better relationship with Goku, who he still calls Kakarot due to his undying pride as a saiyan warrior. Characters in a character-driven plot are much more fleshed-out and connects the audience in a more realistic way; be it mentally or emotionally.

As we mentioned before there are tons of anime titles that can either be plot driven; where the characters of the story make choices and decisions that will advance the overall plot, or character-driven, where the story is used to develop the character. There are some anime titles that are able to pull off both; where not only the plot was good, but the character development was on the same page as the plot. (Bebop and Trigun can’t be the only ones…can they?)

So what do you look for in an anime title? Do you like a good story that pulls you in for a wild ride? Or are you looking for a title with characters who have emotions and feelings that you can relate to (or both)? Let us know in the comments below!

Until next post, stay nerdy my friends! 😉

5 Anime Titles With (Arguably) Good Filler Arcs

When it comes to anime there’s all kinds of things and elements that we as fans either look for, or would like to see more of. One of the most critical things anime consumers search for when doing some title surfing is the plot of the story. (Character development is number two.) Seven Deadly Sins and Soul Eater are good examples of some great plots in anime, but if you happen to stumble upon an anime title when the plot seems a bit ‘uncertain’ (or if the remainder hasn’t been fully animated yet due to deadline issues), then the series will fill up the dead space with a non-canonical batch of episodes known as a Filler Arc. Depending on the series these arcs can either help (or hurt) a show, but at the end of the day its all on how you (the viewer) chooses to intrepid it. On that note, here are five anime titles with (arguably) good filler arcs – or episodes.

5. Pokemon – Go West Young Meowth

We all know Meowth from Team Rocket can talk, but do you wanna know how he’s able to in the first place? This particular episode of the first season of Pokemon tells the story of a crush Meowth had on a female Meowth, and even though he laid his cards on the table to try and win her over, she rejected him in the end. On the bright side he did join forces with Jessie and James and together he became the third member of Team Rocket.

4. My Hero Academia – Everyone’s Internships

There’s a really cool filler that follows the rest of the students at the academy while Deku and a few others are fighting against the villain known as Stain. This episode of My Hero Academia follows the Internship Mission of the other students (including a certain lovable frog) while giving the viewing audience a chance to get to know them.

3. Soul Eater – Any Ecalibur Episode

Yep, there’s no other way around it. Any episode with Excalibur in it is going to be hilarious! Who knew the legendary sword of King Arthur had a sense of humor. XP

2. Dragon Ball Z – Goku and Piccolo Learning To Drive

Remember when you got your Driver’s License? Well somewhere along the line, Goku and Piccolo tried out for theirs and well…you’ll have to watch the video to find out. 😉

1. Naruto – Gotta See, Gotta Know! Kakashi Sensei’s True Face!

One of the great mysteries of the Naruto franchise! Just what is behind Kakashi’s mask?! We’ve been asking that question for the last 10 years or so, and we STILL don’t know the answer – or do we? In this filler episode Naruto and his team do everything they can to figure out what is underneath their teacher’s mask, and what happens next is one of the most hilarious endings to any anime filler ever!

If you have any titles that have some good anime filler, let us know in the comments section down below! Until next post guys n’ gals, stay nerdy! 🙂

Throwback Thursday: Project A-ko!

Hey guys! It’s Thursday night, so that means another night of overviewing a classic title from way back in anime’s heyday. Tonight we return to the 80’s with an action-comedy that we’re pretty sure is not for kiddos, but for old school fans. On this Throwback Thursday, we bring you the classic 80’s anime movie known as Project A-ko.

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Pretty sure we’ve seen this before…

We’re going to be keeping the spoilers to a minimum, but here’s the overview…

An alien spacecraft makes a crash landing in Graviton City; taking out the entire population with it. Years later the city gets rebuilt as two students; A-ko Magami and C-ko Kotobuki, are starting their new year of school at Graviton City. A-ko has superhuman speed and strength yet considers herself as an ordinary teenage girl, who is rather keen on making sure she gets to school on time.

Although everything seems normal in the city, the two girls catch the unwanted attention of the school’s richest and snobbiest student, B-ko. During this situation B-ko has a crush on C-ko and tries to win her over, but after her attempts fail, she soon discovers the she had a rivalry against A-ko during kindergarten. Therefore every morning she uses mechas piloted by her all-female army to attack A-ko each morning, in hopes of having C-ko all to herself. The rivalry between them isn’t the only thing that’s happening, as the Trench-coated spy known as “D” has been monitoring the situation, and has reported it to an approaching spaceship on its way to Earth.

There are a lot of references from other anime titles of the 70’s and 80’s such as Gundam and Fist of the North Star. The title itself is also a reference to Jackie Chan’s movie Project A, but bears no resemblance to the actual movie. If you’re a fan of sci-fi and action comedies then this is an anime movie that you’re gonna wanna see!

That’s all we’ve got, but there’s more next week! 😉

The Top 5 Underestimated Anime Characters!

One of the most common tropes that you’ll see in just about 90% of the anime that you watch is a character (or main character) that is always underestimated. They possess traits and skills that are unique and make it appear to others that they’re meaningless and that they’ll never amount to anything, but when the time comes for them to shine, they end up blowing our minds! The funny thing about it is that a lot of us see ourselves as that character; the one who always got looked down upon because he didn’t possess the same level of talent or skills as his/her peers did, and then BAM! We do something that completely changes their whole perception of us. There are a lot of anime characters out there who feel underestimated, but these five in particular speak to many of us in this day and age…

5. Bell – DanMachi

A top favorite series in our books and hopefully in yours too! In the series DanMachi, Bell is an adventurer in an RPG-ish world who soon becomes a part of the “Hestia Familia” alongside Hestia; his goddess. As a main character of the series you can kind of tell he’s the underestimated protagonist, but he suddenly shows what he’s truly made of when he comes face-to-face with a sword-wielding Minotaur on the 9th floor.

4. Ikki Kurogane – Chivalry of a Failed Knight

Honestly, this series deserves a little more credit than its been getting over the last couple of years. The show follows the story of Ikki Kurogane, who has been labeled as “The Worst One” by the academy of his peers, that is until he fought against some of the most elite knights in the school – especially Stella Vermillion.

3. Deku – My Hero Academia

Well of course HE was going to be among our Top 5 picks! We all remember back in the first episode of season one, where the one called Deku wanted to be a hero, but was born without a quirk. Now two seasons later he is not only a hero, but a rising main character who still finds himself underestimated at times, but knows that there are some battles that he can’t fight on his own.

2. Naruto Uzumaki – Naruto Shippuden

Since the early 2000’s we’ve watched this Hidden Leaf shinobi grow up right before our eyes, and now he’s finally achieved the dream of being Hokage. We’ve all seen the many times he’s been underestimated (which is pretty much every single battle he’s ever been in), and now with all of the skills and jutsu that he’s learned over the years, Naruto has become what it means to be a hero – a ninja hero!

1. Gohan – Dragon Ball Z

The moment Gohan headbutted his evil uncle Raditz during the Saiyan Saga, he became an instant favorite among Dragon Ball Z fans. From there we watched his power grow to incredible heights, and the peak of that was when he faced Cell during the Cell Games. As Super Saiyan 2, Gohan put everything on the line into one final Kamehameha blast with the help of his father from beyond the grave. Even though he fell off after the Cell Saga (and the Bojack Arc via the movie), this is the moment Gohan fans will never forget.

There are so many other characters out there in the anime verse who are viewed as ‘underestimated’ to many of the villains or adversaries that face. Nevertheless it also gives them a chance to show them (and the audience) what they’re truly made of!

That’s it for now, but there’s more to come! 🙂

 

Anime Conventions 2019: April Edition!

March may be gone but Spring is in the air! (And so is the heat!) If you’re looking for some fantastic cons to go to for the month of April, we’ve got some great choices in are arsenal. If you live in the Northwest, Southwest, or Westbound regions of North America, these are the cons that you’re gonna wanna check out! You can also check them out on our main page by clicking on one of the buttons for the region you live in. On that note that will do it for this filler post, but there’s more on the way! Stay tuned! 😉

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D&A’s Throwback Thursday: Neo Ranga!

FYI, this anime title is an 18+ series, so if you’re 17-and-a-half you’re STILL not old enough to watch it! (But you probably will…)

Happy Thursday guys n’ girls! Last week we brought you an old school title from the 80’s, so it’s only appropriate that we bump it up by a decade and head to the 90’s! The 90’s was a classic time filled with cross-colors, Nintendo, SEGA, Fox Kids, and so many other awesome things from your childhood. If you happened to be a teenager in the 90’s and was somewhat familiar with the term ‘Japanimation’, then you probably have seen a few titles that you may (or may not) recognize. This may (or may not) be one of them; a dram-com that has action, adventure, and even some mecha. A show called…Neo Ranga.

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Holy crap!! That looks COOL!

For those who have no idea what this series is about, we’re gonna give you the brief overview while keeping the spoilers to a minimum.

The Shimabara sisters; Manami, Ushio, and Yuuhi, are three siblings that live on their own, with the oldest of the three being the breadwinner of the family. Suddenly a young man from the Island of Barou comes with news of the sisters’ long-lost brother, who has since died after marrying into the Barou royalty, thus leaving the sisters the current rulers of the island. Because of this they are now protected by the island’s god named Neo Ranga; a Godzilla-like monster who is now the sisters’ personal god. Although it follows them back to Japan, Neo Ranga soon becomes the target of the Japan Self-Defense Forces.

Each of the sisters use the powers of Neo Ranga for their own personal goals and ambitions; Ushio uses it to help Neo’s interactions with people, Minami uses Neo for financial gain due to being the breadwinner of the family, while Yuuhi simply uses Neo to deal with any unsavory elements in her neighborhood – which includes the Yakuza.

The series is 48 episodes long and (of course) it’s for mature audiences, so that means partial nudity, maybe a few swears, the usual. So if you haven’t seen the series yet be sure to check it out! Also, we’re happy to announce that we’ve reached 200 followers on our blog! We are so happy that you’re a part of our aniblogging lives, and we thank you for all of the love and support that you give to us, and the community!

Until next post, stay nerdy! 😉

D&A Anime Blog: Updates & Changes!

Welcome back! Earlier in March we mentioned that we’ll be doing some updates and renovations for the blog, as we’ve been looking into more ways that we can expand our platform as well as our features. With that comes the closing down of a few features on the blog that were great in theory, but didn’t exactly give us the results that we were hoping for. So if you want to know what in store for D&A for the rest of the year (and even down the road), here’s what’s happening:

We’re Closing Down Our Fanfiction Feature

For this feature its not that we’ve lost interest in doing fanfiction, its just that we don’t have as much time to make it as often as we used to. With so many things on our plate both on and offline, we’ve decided that it would be best to shut down this feature of the blog to focus on creating more original content and posts.

Our Music Section Will Be On Our Sidebar

One of the coolest ideas we had for the blog is to implement a feature that will allow our fans to check out some originally produced Hip-Hop/Electronic music. For our blog renovation project we’ve decided that this upcoming feature will be on our sidebar instead of on its own page. It will be in playlist format so fans can pick what tracks they want to hear.

We’re Upgrading Our Plan To Premium

This will be the final phase of our blog renovation project, as this will allow us to give our fans an ‘out-of-the-box’ anime blog experience. We’re hoping to one day have a Shop/Merch page where fans can buy official D&A Anime Blog T-shirts and other merch, and with this upgrade we’ll be one step closer to making that happen.

So far that’s all we’ve got planned for the second quarter of 2019, but rest assured we’re only just getting started! There’s more new features we hope to execute on the blog (some even include a future Twitch channel), as we continue to strive to become one of the best two-man operated anime blogs out there. As always we wanna thank our fans for all of the love and support that we’ve received on the blog, social media, as well as at many of the cons we’ve gone to. Stay nerdy, my friends! 🙂