Hyakka Ryoran: Anime REvisted Returns Next Week!

With so many anime titles at our disposal to watch anytime, anywhere; there are some that just so happen to slip through the cracks of popularity and thus end up being forgotten. Many of our favorite VA’s have voiced in a lot of top-tier titles such as Dragon Ball Z, My Hero Academia, Naruto, One Piece, and Fairy Tail to name a few. In spite of all of the titles that we know our favorite VA’s from, there are some titles that they’ve done several years (and some times a decade) ago that may not have gotten the fanfare or promotion that it deserved. This is one of those titles; Hyakka Ryoran: Samurai Girls. I guess what we’re getting at is…Anime REvisted is coming back next Monday with this 12-episode title (which gives us three weeks of relief from topic ‘burnout’), so if you’re fan of samurai girls, then you’re probably going to love this one! 😉

Samurai Girls, next week!

D&A Anime Blog: 5 Underrated Anime Titles That Need A 2nd Season!

As an anime fan, the saddest part about your favorite titles is when its the final episode of the series. Depending on the popularity of it (i.e. merch sales as well as the fandom surrounding it) nine times outta ten your favorite title usually gains a second season. (Or third or fourth if its really popular.) With the amount of anime that’s out in the world right now, there have been several titles that have flown under the radar; meaning that in spite of having great character development as well as a decent plot, they never go past the first season – which is kind of a shame! So from us to you, here are five underrated anime titles that really NEED a second season.

This title NEEDS a second season!

Chivalry of a Failed Knight

As fans of this series we can’t tell you how much this series needs a second season! If you haven’t gotten the chance to see this series just yet, this is one we recommend that you check out! There’s so much more to Ikki and Stella’s relationship as well as what will happen at the Seven Star Sword Art Festival, so hopefully we get to see a second season of this awesome show!

A classic gem from Toonami

Deadman Wonderland

As a part of the Saturday Night Toonami lineup back in the mid 2010’s, this title is beloved by many despite the fact that it only got one season. The manga of course goes deeper and even reveals that fan-favorite Shiro is the most powerful ‘Deadman’ in the whole series; which may be one of the reasons to give this series another season, or possibly two!

Another classic that deserves a second season!

The Sacred Blacksmith

This one’s another title that had some great potential to have a second season, but like many underrated titles it never got the credit or fanfare that it deserved. If you’ve read the manga, you already know that the main characters are waaay different in personality that their anime versions. Another gem that kinda needs a second season…

You already know this title needs a second season!

No Game, No Life!

Anyone who has seen this series already knows it needs a second season! Who doesn’t want another season of Sora and Shiro? Will the two of them finally beat the God of Games and claim the world of games as their own? Welp, we’ll have to find out in the second season – IF it gets one!

Mugen and the Gang!

Samurai Champloo

Hip-Hop, Feudal Japan, and Samurai? These three things make up this classic known as Samurai Champloo! If you’re a fan of Cowboy Bebop, then you’re gonna love this series. Great characters, awesome fights, and good music! This one is NOT to be overlooked! 😉

There are so many titles out there with only one season; some of the reasons for that can range from the lack of sales (DVD’s and merch) to the studio becoming bankrupt (which has happened in several cases). Nevertheless these one-season titles are still awesome and still give you the same level of excitement as you’d find in multi-season titles. On that note that will do it for this post, but we’ve still got some more blog content coming your way! 😉

Things Are Kinda Slow, But We’re Picking Up Speed Next Week!

As the headline says; things on our end have been kinda slow lately. However if you know us well, we’re not ones to give up so easily when things get a little stagnant. We do have some rather good news to report as far as our plans for D&A Studios is concerned; after what was to be a lengthy battle, we’ve finally gotten our studio desktop and systems running at 100% again! We know we’ve been promoting and telling you guys that our “Nerdz of the Decade” podcast is coming, and that is a promise we fully intend to keep (even though it’s taking a little bit longer that we’d had hoped it would). So if this happens to be our only post for this week, here’s what we’ll be bring you guys for next week!

This show would be one of them

D&A’s Top 5 Underrated Anime Titles That NEED A Second Season!

It seems like the 2020 anime season hasn’t really brought us a lot of titles that could potentially be the next hit franchise (just yet), but one we’ve noticed is that there are some titles that are getting more seasons and climbing up the ranks of popularity! As awesome as that is, there are a few anime titles that flew under the radar and have become underrated gems in need of a second season. In this post we highlight and pick our Top 5 underrated anime titles that NEED a second season, and also throw in some honorable mentions as well!

This is How We (Used To) Do It

Nerd Homecoming: What Will Conventions Look Like When We Return?

Let’s face it; we all miss conventions. In fact the last one we’ve been to was our home convention known as Animore back in January of last year, and since then we’ve seen posts, tweets, and articles about COVID-19 putting the kibosh on anime and other nerdy conventions for what feels like an eternity. Lately there have been a lot of digital alternatives to conventions to help take our mind off of the pandemic, and perhaps they might even open the door to some new and innovative ideas once it’s safe to go back to cons once again. In this post we ask the question; what will cons even look like once we come back to them?

D&A Anime Blog Presents: Avidd Music Fridays!

Provided by Avidd Minddset (D&A’s D.J. Lewis), we highlight new up-and-coming indie music artists and showcase their awesome work on a new segment we call Avidd Music Fridays! If you’re an indie music artist, DJ, or a producer who wants to showcase their work and even have us highlight it on our page “The Lounge”, let us know through our Contact Us page. We’ll be making our first post this coming Friday!

That’s all we got for now, but as always there’s more content to come! 🙂

Anime Love & Hip-Hop with D.J. Lewis: The Present!

When last I posted I was talking about how the subcultures of anime and Hip-Hop crossed paths and came together during the 80’s and early 90’s. Even though the relationship was starting to bloom during that era in time, it wasn’t until 1997 that both subcultures took it to the next level. Unlike Western animation that at one point in time did depict real-life situations such as discrimination, poverty, and violence (early X-Men episodes and several from Captain Planet), Japanese animation took on the fabric of said situations that have attracted the youth-driven culture of Hip-Hop. Several artist that come to mind in terms of the ‘nerdy side’ of Hip-Hop would be the late MF Doom, MegaRan, and Ghostface Killah. As a lot people might’ve noticed (if you happen to be a fan of anime and Hip-Hop) the biggest anime references have been from Dragon Ball Z and Naruto; both of which are heavy-hitter titles that have drawn inspiration from many corners of the African-American community through fashion as well as Hip-Hop.

The Akatsuki bout’ to drop a mixtape!

Several well-known rappers have made tons of references to these titles as you might’ve heard in their lyrics. Others took it a step further and re-created scenes from popular anime; such as Kanye West’s “Stronger” which was heavily inspired by Akira, the 1988 film. The connection between anime and Hip-Hop culture isn’t just in America, it’s also relevant in British Hip-Hop as well. Although you have anime-inspired rappers like Lil’ Uzi Vert and Shababii, one of the most anime-influenced rappers who even has his whole persona rooted in the subculture itself, is Scarlxrd. His sound took on an infusion of Trap music and Heavy Metal; two genres that you normally do see together let alone being fused together. Scarlxrd’s inspiration from anime comes from the popular fan-favorite title known as Tokyo Ghoul; where he even wears the zipped mask that bares heavy resemblance to Ken Kaneki.

The cultural crossover between anime and Hip-Hop has led to various other achievements in the medium; from the level of inclusion of African-American characters in anime, to titles being soundtracked by Hip-Hop through artists like RZA and the late Nujabes. (Japanese Hip-Hop artist Lotus Juice also did Death the Kid’s “So Crazy” theme from Soul Eater as well.) From my view point it seems like the relationship between anime and Hip-Hop will continue to evolve, as upcoming artists are finding their creative sides through the layers of both subcultures. If you jump on YouTube right now you’ll find soooo many Hip-Hop/Rap cyphers about anime titles and characters, that you’ll think its crazy! Who knows, maybe somewhere down the line we’ll have a record label dedicated to anime-inspired Hip-Hop. That is…if it’s not already been done. (*chuckles*)

On my next post will be the conclusion to me three-part series of post between the subcultures of anime, and Hip-Hop. Until next time, stay safe and love one another! 🙂 

Anime Love & Hip-Hop with D.J. Lewis: The Past!

When you think of anime; the first thing that comes to mind for most people (if they happen to be fans) would be pioneering shows like Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, and Cowboy Bebop. When it comes to Hip-Hop (depending on what generation you’re from); names like Tupac, Biggie Smalls, T.I., RZA, and Lil’ John to name a few. (Might as well throw Drake and Migos in there for extra credit.) If you’re a fan of these two subcultures, you’ve might have noticed that they’ve been crossing paths consistently over the last decade or so; but in actuality the relationship between the anime world and Hip-Hop culture goes back even further. I’ve covered this topic a few times over the last year or so, but there’s actually more to it that originally thought. So this time around, I’ll be breaking down the relationship and anime and Hip-Hop has in three parts; the Past, the Present, and the Future. So without further ado, here’s the Past (or How it all Started).

Samuel L. Jackson likes anime too

Back in the 1960’s anime was gaining ground in the popularity department throughout Western Culture. A couple of decades later a man by the name of Hiroshi Fujiwara made his return to Japan (after coming from the U.S.) and started playing some Old School Hip-Hop records. (This part I covered in my previous two-part post “Anime Love & Hip-Hop Part 1 and Part 2“.) This trend of course lead to the rise of Hip-Hop in Japan; or Japanese Hip-Hop, which is heavily influenced by Old School Hip-Hop beats, breakdancing, and the carefree 80’s attitude. (Grandmaster Flash comes to mind.) Also during the 80’s the influence of Hip-Hop notably made its way into the the anime world, as many anime creators during that time started incorporating more Western culture into their productions.

One of those productions in particular was Afro Samurai. In fact the creator of the series himself Takashi Okazaki stated that he used to draw African-American characters in Kleenex boxes when he was in his teens; due to his love for Hip-Hop and Soul music. During the creation process the creator incorporated elements of samurai into Afro’s design, which appears to be based off of the Black samurai known as Yasuke during the Sengoku Period of Japan. Throughout the 90’s anime titles even incorporated elements of Hip-Hop into their openings; like Samurai Champloo for example, thanks to the late Nujabes. Thanks to anime’s rise in popularity among Western audiences, the relationship between the medium and the subculture of Hip-Hop grew along with its popularity; which eventually lead to the rise of Nerdcore between the late 90’s and early 2000’s.

Back when I was growing up in the 90’s I loved hip-Hop (and still do), but during that time I never really thought about the parallels that Hip-Hop culture has with anime. The topics and plots found in anime are quite parallel with that found in African-American communities; such as racism and poverty. The thought that these two subcultures were so connected on many levels never crossed my mind until 2017, but during the time I’ve had this blog with my buddy of 18 years (A. Goldman), I’ve learned a lot of things about the relationship of these two subcultures. Anime and Hip-Hop may appear different on paper, but they’re actually more connected than you’d think! 😉

D&A Breakdown: The (Brief) History Of “Best Girl”!

In the anime community, there are many terms and words that describe the characters and titles that we’ve come to know. For as long as we’ve been a part of this nerdy community, we’ve heard everything from ‘waifu’ to ‘Rule 34′ (whatever that means, but that’s something for another post on another day). For younger anime fans who are just stepping into the community for the first time, some of the words and terms may be a little confusing to you. Don’t fret, cuz’ D&A’s got you covered on the words of the otaku culture! In this post we’ll be breaking down the (brief) history of the term heard most often in various anime titles surrounding female characters; Best Girl.

Kirito found his Best Girl! 😉

For many anime fans; the term ‘Best Girl’ pretty much means that they’ve selected a fan-favorite female character in a series. The qualifications can include but not limited to; their interaction/relationship with a male lead or side character, how they treat other characters in the series, and when the MC needs it most – how that female character shows up and shows out! Based on our research the term ‘Best Girl’ has also gone hand in hand with the term ‘waifu’; with the first instance of the term was used in January of 2009. Much like the ‘Waifu Wars’ many fans of harem/ecchi and fantasy titles like High School DXD and Re:Zero find themselves rooting for a specific character of the show; pretty much reinforcing the term ‘best girl’.

The best way we can describe the concept of ‘best girl’ is treating it like it’s a fandom game – because it kinda is. Fans apply the ‘best girl’ rules to whatever show they find themselves watching, and whatever cast of characters they find appealing. As for what the overall rules are in who qualifies for ‘best girl’ (or ‘best boy’ in some cases), that’s pretty much up to you as the viewer. We’re not ones to pick favorites when it comes to this term, but we’d be lying through out teeth if we didn’t have best girls of our own. (A. Goldman’s is Hestia from Danmachi, and D.J. Lewis’ is Stocking from Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt.) So however you view the term ‘best girl’, there’s probably going to be a lot of fans of the series who agree with your choice, and some…not so much. Nevertheless ‘best girl’ to us means the best female anime character of the series, and no matter how you slice it, we all have our favorites! 😉

So, who’s your best girl? Feel free to tell us in the comments below!

Whatz Happening This Week: Super Bowl LV Edition!

While most of the world will have their eyes glued to the battle between The Kansas City Chiefs and The Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Super Bowl LV, we’ll be working on bringing you guys some awesome content for the week. Although things have been a little slow on our end, we’ll never stop fighting to give you guys some of the best nerdy content you can find! So as the title says; here’s whatz happening this week on D&A…

Anime Love & Hip-Hop Returns!

Anime Love & Hip-Hop: The Past, The Present, and The Future (with D.J. Lewis)

This is one of our most favorite posts that highlights the relationship between the anime world and Hip-Hop culture. Although we’ve done several posts on this topic, we’ve decided to retell it in three different posts from three different timelines; the past, the present, and the future. Join D&A’s D.J. Lewis as we journey down the road to how the anime and Hip-Hop worlds collide, and what was the result of the relationship.

We already know she’s someone’s Best Girl

D&A Breakdown: The (Brief) History Behind “Best Girl”!

No matter what title you’ve watched up to this point, every anime seems to have a female character who does something in the series that earn her the title; Best Girl. With us being the curious little nerds that we are, we’ll be breaking down the history of where the term came from, and what qualifies certain female anime characters as ‘Best Girl’.

That’s whatz happening this week, so until next post stay safe guys! 😉

A Founder’s Thoughts with D.J. Lewis: American Influence in Anime!

It’s no secret that anime has become one of the most popular mediums in the world. From music to conventions and cosplay culture, anime has touched the lives of hundreds of thousands of individuals from all walks of life; and all nationalities regardless of their country. Everybody knows somebody who’s into anime, but how did something that was once laughed at by the adversaries of the people who embraced it, now a part of mainstream culture?

We dunno, but we’re sure you’re gonna tell us.

To figure this one out we’ll have to travel back 60 years into the past; when titles like Astro Boy and Speed Racer were one of the few titles to make their way into America. Back during this time those shows in particular gained popularity with American audiences; for many millennial anime fans (like myself), our parents may have been fans of those shows growing up. (Plus my mama loves Speed Racer!)

From the 1960’s to the 1980’s a lot of the anime titles that were imported from Japan ended up being heavily altered and localized (even to the point of changing the name of the titles themselves). So if you’re familiar with the show Robotech, it’s real name and title was actually Macross. We all know about Transformers and all of the series and spin-offs that came from its original, but the basis of the ‘Robots in Disguise’ came from two series called Diaclone and Microman. Here’s a lil’ fun fact; the first (and I mean FIRST) anime meetup group was called the Cartoon Fantasy Organization (C.F.O.) which was created in 1977 in Los Angeles, California. Yep, L.A. In fact the very first English-dubbed anime distribution company was Streamline Pictures; way before we had BangZoom, Viz Media, Aniplex, Funimation, and Sentai Filmworks.

Once the 90’s kicked in, the overall popularity of anime was at an all-time high. Being a 90’s kid myself you guys already know all of the heavy hitter titles; Sailor Moon, Dragonball Z, Inuyasha, Gundam Wing, Evangalion, and Cowboy Bebop! The level of popularity began to give birth to a subculture of people who identify themselves as “Anime Fans”, and is still growing to this very day. America’s influence on anime has even translated into more recent cartoon titles from Cartoon Network; like Steven Universe or The Amazing World of Gumball.

Right now it looks like due to anime’s overwhelming popularity throughout 60% of broadcast anime throughout the world, American animation companies are adjusting their productions and animations styles as a ‘reverse-influence’ competitive strategy. If you’ve seen shows like Avatar: The Last Airbender, The Boondocks, and the 2003 Teen Titans, you’ll notice what I’m talking about right away!

All-in-all; America’s influence on anime has opened the minds and the imaginations of the individuals who invest in the medium. It’s given us anime conventions, cosplay culture, anime hip-hop and nerdcore, and new ways to tell stories. Thanks to America’s influence anime has also become more diverse in its story telling; with some anime titles being produced, directed, and even dubbed by people of color. (D’ART Shtajio comes to mind.) The influence of anime can be seen in many other countries such as Brazil and The UK, so American anime fans are not the only ones connected to the medium.

For me personally; I think this is awesome! Having something that you can connect with as you go through life can really boost your overall morale and quality of life. Toonami’s done that with so many people, and there have been stories where anime has saved the lives of the ones who watched it. Although we’re not sure what the future will hold for this once-niche medium (that still is in some parts of the world), we already know that as long as there are anime fans and the demand is high, there will always be anime! 🙂

 

Anime Error 404: What’s Happening Next Week

Guys, writer’s block is REAL! If you’re a blogger, then we’re pretty sure that you’ve come up against this lil’ demon from time to time. So now that it has chosen us as its target for this week, we’ll be rolling over or posts and content for next week. Here’s what’s on the books for the blog next week:

“Got you!!”

D&A’s Top 5 Anime Villains of 2020

Many of us never want to see or hear the word “2020” again; but in spite of it being one of the craziest years humanity has ever faced, it still brought us some arguably good anime titles to watch. Not only that; it also gave us some anime villains who are now newly favored by fans, while many still rave about their cult classics as well. Next week we’ll be counting down our Top 5 favorite anime villains of 2020!

A Founder’s Thoughts with D.J. Lewis

A Founder’s Thought’s with D.J. Lewis: America’s Influence on Anime

We got another “A Founder’s Thought’s” post on America’s Influence on Anime. D&A’s D.J. Lewis talks about America’s influence on many titles to come out of Japan. From Baccano to Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt, many titles have drawn their inspiration from America in some form or fashion, but how much of America’s influence is in the anime titles that we watch? D.J. Lewis digs deep to find out!

D&A’s Official Upcoming Podcast

Nerdz of the Decade Podcast Update!

After selecting our name for our official podcast, we’ll be filling you guys in on what we plan to do next regarding when we’ll launch our first episode and so on. We know you’ve been waiting quite a while, but the wait is almost over!

See you guys next week for some awesome new posts and content! 🙂

D&A Anime Blog: What Shows To Watch For In 2021!

As we get closer and closer to the end of the ‘anything-can-happen’ 2020 year, the collection of shows and anime titles that have come about can be described in a number of ways. Although there wasn’t anything that would make you jump out of your seat, there are a few titles that are worth taking a shot at. The two that come to mind for us would be Tower of God, as well as The Misfit of Demon Academy. Both of which are great titles that are well worth taking a shot at if you haven’t seen them already, and later down the line we may be doing a review on them.

With COVID-19 still running amok worldwide, several studios have been doing everything they can to release more episodes and content of their shows; and have adjusted pretty well. This year hasn’t been an easy one to say the least, but with sneak peeks and trailers coming out for shows and movies already on the horizon, anime studios and creators are already setting their sights on the 2021 season. With that in mind, here are just a couple trailers that we’ve stumbled upon…

SAO…is back!

Many of us have already seen the first season of Sword Art Online, however when it comes to the Light Novel (SAO: Progressive) the anime left a lot of details in the story out of the picture. Progressive dives deeper into the story through the POV of Asuna and Kirito, as they travel floor-by-floor defeating monsters and bosses while bringing some much needed character development – that was seemingly transparent in the original anime series. SAO: Progressive comes out 2021!

Things get serious…

If you’ve seen the first season of Cells at Work that teaches how the cells in your body handle viruses and deceases, then the second season takes a much darker turn. We’re not ones to tell how others should live their lives, but after seeing this trailer, it might change your lifestyle.

Although we don’t know too much about this series, we know that it started out as a video game on the Nintendo DS; that’s now an animated series!

The story of the Sins continues…

A lot of Sin’s fans weren’t too happy about how last season ended; especially in terms of the quality. Hopefully a redemption story is made this season as the saga of the Sins continues!

2020 has its fair share of hits and misses this season, but as we look ahead to what 2021 will bring, the overall mood and morale of the anime community from our view is filled with excitement and curiosity. We can hardly wait for the day when we can return to the nerdy sanctuaries called “Anime Conventions”, but until that day, stay safe and watch more anime! 😉