A Founder’s Thoughts with D.J. Lewis! (06/16/21)

What’s good anime fam! It’s been awhile since I’ve done one of these posts, so for this one it’ll pretty much be an update on what’s I’ve been doing as of late. As for what’s happening in my neck of the woods; it looks like we’re inching closer to that magical goal of 70% full vaccination not just in my home state of Maryland, but in a couple other states as well. For 15 months the thought of going to an anime convention was frowned upon due to the size of the crowd, but with the positivity rate dropping in certain states with high vaccination rates, some conventions (smaller ones) are starting to come back around. I myself have been contemplating if A. Goldman and I should take a shot at one of the returning conventions later this year; one of them just happens to be in New York. As for myself and what I’ve been up to as of late, well it’s pretty much the usual.

Due to my mixes being taken down off my Youtube and Facebook pages, I’ve decided to upload all of my DJ mixes to my official Mixcloud page. You can find me as Avidd Minddset on Mixcloud and check out a couple of my ‘Minddset Sessions’ DJ mixes! I’m also working on episode ideas for our Nerdz of the Decade podcast, and I promise that we’ll have some new episodes for you guys to check out! It’s hard to believe it’s been 17 months since my last convention, and with a few of them returning (with safety measures in place) I guess you can say that our first convention back since March of 2020 will be Anime NYC. I’ve never been to New York or Manhattan for that matter, but after being stuck in my house for a year and a half, I’m itchin’ to leave the state!

Even though I’m fully vaccinated (and shaking off the side effects) I’m probably still going to keep my mask on; or get one of those LED light-up masks that look like the one Scorpion from Mortal Kombat has on. I know it sounds like I’m rambling on, but guys, these are just the thoughts that occur in my head everyday – and I write em’ all down on this blog to share with you! The last year and a half hasn’t been easy (and I can probably say the same for you if you live in the U.S. or any other country), but D&A has kinda been my little online home away from ‘home’. I can share my thoughts, how I feel about certain things and trends, and what’s the best anime title to start with if you’re just getting into it. (Go with the classics like Pokemon, Dragon Ball, Yu-Gi-Oh, Cowboy Bebop, or Sailor Moon and work your way up to the new school titles.)

Honestly, there’s moments where I’m glad A. Goldman and I had that vision back in 2015 about creating a blog; thought it was going to be an anime convention photo album at the time. We’re five-going-on-six years in on this thing, and it’s been a fun ride! So I’m gonna end this post with more years to come for me and A. Goldman doin’ our nerdy thing on this blog, as well as getting the chance to break out my first live DJ set at an anime/gaming after party (or anywhere that wants to jam out to some music).

Until next post guys! 😉

Anime REvisited: And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online Episode 12!

What’s good, guys n’ gals! Although this one is bittersweet we have reached our final review for our Anime REvisited pick; And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online. When we started this series we kept our expectations to a minimum. This isn’t to say that we assumed that the series would be terrible in any way, but with the amount of anime that we watch that deal with the concept of MMO’s and net game culture, we wanted to reserve our judgment until after the last episode of the series.

For the final episode of this title; Rusian and the rest of Guild Alleycats joined forces with Nekohime’s guild to form the ultimate guild, as they stormed Fort Cantor in order to take it back from the previous guild that had it. Eventually they won but soon they had to defend it against Bats’ guild – who had returned to finish what they started before. Nekohime’s Elite Guard managed to take out most of Bats’ guild, until only the leader of the guild himself was left alive. Sadly 90% of Nekohime’s guild (including Nekohime herself) was defeated by Bats as he approached the throne room where Kyo stood tall. To her this was all about payback as Bats went to work and thought he had defeated her in one shot. Instead she used premium items to keep herself alive long enough for her fused guild to hold Fort Cantor for a week; thus causing Bats to lose.

With their mission accomplished (at least for now) Rusian and the rest of Guild Alleycats celebrated with Nekohime’s guild as they gather together and took a screen cap of their victory. Back in the real world it was time for the school festival as Ako and a few other girls completed their assignment as they were working on a maid café. Ako relapsed for a moment saying that she couldn’t handle the social stress that came with being a maid for the maid café, until Hideki reminded her not to run away from her problems like she usually does. This of course shows that she’s growing and socially maturing, and by the end of the episode (after the end credits) Hideki told Ako that she can have anything she wanted – in the game of course.

Normally she’d be head-over-heels upon hearing that, but what she really wanted to do is kiss him; in real life. Just as their lips were about to touch the other members of Guild Alleycats showed up. Hideki told everyone that Ako can have anything she wanted in the game; insisting that the game and real life were separate, but Ako was the one who wanted a REAL relationship with Hideki, and NOT the one in the game!

Although it’s considered to be an underrated title based on popularity alone, we actually had fun reviewing this series. The overall plot may not be a ‘mind-blower’ right away (considering that it’s focused on the affairs of net-game life and school life), but the concept of the plot was pretty much exactly what we thought it was going to be. Again; whenever we review a series for this segment, we never go into it with high expectations. Instead we review each episode and do a thorough analysis before coming to a final conclusion. One thing that we did like about this series was the growth factor. In the very first episode we see Ako having difficulty distinguishing reality and fantasy from one another, and by the end it’s like she finally figures it out and even gains real friends along the way.

School life can be cruel at times as well as awkward for the socially challenged, but at one point and time many of us were Ako; a social reject who loved nothing more than playing net-games and making online friends, while keeping an invisible wall around her to protect herself from ‘normies’. If you’re gonna jump into an anime title that deals with social anxiety and growth, net games, and real friends, then this title just might be right up your alley! After the first episode it seems like an intervention and a therapy session due to the fact that Ako is addicted to online gaming; which is a real thing in the United States and several other countries. The main character wants to help Ako tell the difference between the game and reality, while the other friends she meets help her with her academic issues to keep her from falling behind in school. The balance between school life and the game is pretty much even, and the fanservice is not overblown nor in your face. (But it’s there.)

Should the series get a second season we’d probably see the relationship between Ako and Hideki mature and one day lead to a real-life marriage down the road. So to wrap it up; this anime title is pretty much what you’d expect to be. There’s school life, dealing with social anxiety, net games, and social maturity. If you’re looking for a title that can give you the elements of what otaku deal with in real life, then you’re gonna wanna check this series out!

That will do it for Anime REvisited, but like we said before, there is more content to come! Until next post, stay nerdy my friends! 😉

Anime REvisited: And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online Episode 11!

Welcome back guys! It’s time for another episode review from our Anime REvisited pick that you know as; And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online! One episode remains after this review as it’s down to the wire in L.A.

Rusian and the rest of Guild Alleycats meet up with the other guild known as Guild Vallenstein; the top-tier guild who happens to be the most powerful guild in the whole game! Between their maxed out stats and high-grade siege weapons, they pretty much treat Rusian and the rest of their guild like…noobs. While allied with them for the time being, the group makes their way to Fort Cantor in hopes of taking it over. The leader of the other guild known as Bats tells Ako and Seti to chase off the other guards in order for them to go in and take care of business. They do so much to the others dismay (most of which being Akane and Kyo), but despite their plan of attack not going the way they’d hoped, Bats told the guild to capture Fort Cantor. They did, but afterwards Bats and his guild dissolved their alliance as he returned to Fort Cantor and pretty much wasted Rusian and his guild. Talk about a dick move!

With that revelation Kyo and the others left Fort Cantor to strategize on how they were going to get back at Bats for what he did. Back in the real world Ako starts to show real growth in asking for help on her assignment for the school festival; via Maid Café thanks to Hideki. With one more week remaining until the start of the festival Rusian and the others ask Nekohime’s guild for help in taking down Bats and his guild. He of course also asks an old friend for help on this very thing as well. Near the end of the episode both guilds train for the upcoming siege in hopes of recapturing Fort Cantor while taking a picture to remember their adventure (Guild Alleycats of course).

Sorry this one’s a little short, but that will do it for our review for now. The final episode is next as well as our overall review on the whole series! Until next post, stay nerdy! 😉

Anime REvisited: and You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online Episode 10!

It’s coming down to the wire as we bring you another episode review from our Anime REvisited pick; And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online! Summer vacation may be over, but the real fun is just beginning! With that in mind let’s kick off the review!

With Summer vacation finally over Hideki and the others return to school just in time for the school festival. As far as school life goes; everything appears to be right where everyone left it, except Ako tried to skip school again in order to play Legendary Age…ugh! Once classes were over Hideki met up with Ako and the others to come up with a concept of what they’ll be presenting at the school festival. It was also at this time that a new update for L.A. had just dropped known as Siege Warfare; a weekly guild-vs-guild brawl where the winning guild takes over one of the forts held by the previous guild, should they defeat them. Kyo thought that the winner should be able to present that as their concept for the school festival, except with Guild Alleycats having only four members, the odds of them winning are kinda slim to none.

So to compensate for that Hideki and the others decided to do some ‘PvP’ training in order to get good at this type of combat. The results of their training were subpar, as Rusian stated that the guild was pretty much a rag-tag group with no chance of even coming close to winning a siege event. Despite that the guild decided to try their hand at an occupied fort held by a guild called the Cleaning Crew, but the results of that bout ended up with multiple party wipes. This would be the case until Nekohime’s guild came in and took out the other guild; allowing them to occupy the fort – for a short time. Near the end of the episode Kyo got two additional computers because if Hideki and the rest of the guild want to win, they would need more hands on deck. Lord and behold they got it in the form of another guild who happened to be top tier; and who Rusian is quite familiar with…

As far as we can tell you, the overall plot to this series pretty much deals with a mixed bag of things; nerdy romance, net gaming, and distinguishing the game world from reality. That’s all we’ve got for now, but there’s more to come on the blog! Until next time, stay nerdy my friends! 😉

Anime REvisited: And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online Episode 9!

Well guys, we’re back with another episode review from our Anime REvisited pick that you already know as; And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online! This particular episode is pretty much a girl’s trip episode, so this review won’t be too long.

As the episode opens up Kyo, Ako, Akane, and Nanako are at Kyo’s mansion as Summer break finishes up with them having to work on their homework while at the mansion. One of Kyo’s maids gives the other girls a tour of her home before Nanako discovers a hidden room – which happens to be Kyo’s room (with multiple computer monitors). While the other girls continue their studies Ako tells them that she has to use the lil’ girl’s room, even though Ako and Akane don’t trust her any farther than they can throw her. Nanako (Seti) accompanies Ako to make sure she doesn’t take off as the two of them end up in the hallway. Ako being Ako (of course) wanders into a hidden room and discovers a treasure chest; however what was inside of it wasn’t treasure, but in fact a photo album of Kyo’s childhood – which caught the attention of Kyo’s maids.

After Ako’s shenanigans followed be a couple more from her at the dinner table, the girls head off to a private bath for the evening. From there the usual conversations take place; such as what type of girl Hideki likes and so on. This of course causes Ako to take it one step further and call Hideki (Rusian) via Face Time; which was NOT a good idea according to Kyo and Akane. After a game of phone tag Ako threw the phone to Seti as the ended the call – which never really happened cuz’ Hideki didn’t pick up.

Later that night Kyo and the others were in a bed made for four people as she was happy that the other three girls were the first guests to be over for a sleep over. Nanako asked Ako what her relationship is like with Rusian (Hideki) but after a little ‘explaining’ the other three were (for lack of a better word)…shocked…?! To Ako; if Rusian cheated on her in the game, it would be like cheating on her in real life. (How the hell does that make any sense?!)

By the end of the episode; all four girls end up rushing over to Rusian in order to ask for his advice on how to deal with the bomb Ako just dropped on them, about her and Rusian’s in-game marriage. That is how the episode ends…

So that will do it for this episode review, but as always there is much more to come! Until next post, stay nerdy! 😉

Anime REvisited: And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online Episode 8!

Long time no see guys! Welcome back to another episode review from our Anime REvisited pick that we’re pretty sure you know as; And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online! If you’ve ever played an MMO, then you’re aware that this happens from time to time when it comes to browser-based games. For more info on that, let’s jump into the episode!

Picking up where the last episode left off, Hideki and the gang were at an L.A. special cross-promotional event at a hotel. Things seemed to be going well…that is until it was discovered that Hideki’s account got hacked, and the guy playing Rusian is not him – which Ako eventually discovers. Heartbroken that the hacked “took” Rusian away from her, Hideki jumped into Ako’s laptop to see what went down; it wasn’t pretty. Hookup trolls and other nasty excuses for human beings lurk all through online games and certain chat sites, and if you’re a part of the anime/gaming community, then you already know.

After inspection of the damage Hideki and the others devise a plan to help get Hideki’s character (and Ako’s Rusian) back; first Ms. Sato informed the staff and the admins about the situation, then Hideki consulted with an old friend while the others did the very same. This episode is pretty much a ‘payback’ thing; as Hideki and the others went through a whole lot just to get one guy – who he wanted to get hardcore nerd vengeance on for making Ako cry. For the first time throughout the series, Hideki genuinely cares for Ako and doesn’t want anything to happen to her on or offline.

Even though she’s still having trouble telling the difference between the game and reality, there is some growth coming from her end. By the end of the episode Hideki finally got vengeance on the hacker as he was banished from L.A. and charged for his crimes; thus making an example out of him should anyone else try the same thing. Rusian was restored by the Game Master Nyack, and remarried Ako after finding the original in-game wedding ring. So that’s pretty much the episode in a nutshell.

In-game hacks happen in MMOs and other browser-based games more often than you think which is why you gotta be extra careful and make sure you log off when using public computers. Having a private VPN can also help in these situations cuz’ getting your account hacked is NO fun! So that will complete our anime review for now, but there’s more reviews and content to come on the blog! Until next post, stay nerdy and safe online! 😉