Overlord Season Four Review: Only Evil Gets the Power of Friendship.

I quite enjoyed the first three seasons of Overlord, once I got around to watching them,
Based off the light novel by Kugane Maruyama, Overlord follows the story of Sataru Suzuki (Satoshi Hino), a salaryman who, while playing a video game, was isekaied into a fantasy world, along with various other NPCs loyal to his character, Ainz Ooal Gown.
Seasons One through Three followed Ainz’s journey to learn about the new world around him, while his NPCs misinterpreted this as an attempt to take over the world, practically steam-rolling every culture they came across due to being so overpowered.
Season Three saw Ainz’s conquest of the Re-estize Kingdom begin in bloody fashion and this follows through to become the main plotline of Season Four, with the CGI being being much more digestible than it was in that third season, where it was pretty terrible
The first and third act of this season are also great, with the first few episodes wrapping up storylines in the Baharuth Empire in humorous fashion, while also setting up the dark third act by introducing the colossal idiot known as Philip (Yoshitsugu Matsuoka).

Say hello to Overlord‘s stupidest character, Philip.

It is the second act of the season where things falter a bit, though, as the Dwarf storyline did feel pretty rushed to me compared to the other ones.
Along with this, there were two whole volumes cut from the anime after the Dwarf arc, so there was a bit of confusion surrounding some events in the third act.
However, we will still be getting an adaptation of the cut volumes in a movie, so we have that to look forward to.
As for the third act, it does a great job of bringing the season together, especially with how it handles its characters.
Ainz continues to both be funny and cruel, Pandora’s Actor (Mamoru Miyano) finally gets more screen time, and the other Floor Guardians also have their moments.
It is the side characters I was most impressed with this season, however; specifically Renner (Kiyono Yasuno), Zanac (Kouji Fujiyoshi) and Brain (Koji Yusa).

The side characters really stand out in Overlord Season Four.

Renner continues to be the entertaining psychopathic yandere that she is, with her manipulations being fun to watch play out.
Brain has a great standout moment in the last few episodes.
As for Zanac, he really surprised me with his heroism this season.
When we were introduced to him in Season Two, I expected to hate him but, much like Ainz, I had a newfound respect for him after this season. 

Zanac went from another suspicious noble to the future king his kingdom deserves.

Coming back to Ainz and the Floor Guardians, if viewers somehow did not get we were following the villains after the third season, they should definitely realise it now.
As I mentioned in my review for the first few seasons, Ainz and his crew are so overpowered that all we can do is hope that the heroic characters can survive their genocidal actions and, sometimes, they do not.
At least there is plenty of humor to provide levity for following such evil characters.
And if there’s one thing we can always count on Overlord for, its providing a good OP.
Season Four’s, “Hollow Hunger” by OxT, is another excellent one that I never skipped throughout. 

Overlord OPs are always killer.

Overall, Season Four is a pretty good one for Overlord.
The quality of animation is much better than Season Three, the beginning and ending of the season are great, and side characters like Renner, Zanac and Brain really shine.
Now, I am just curious about where the anime goes from here?
Maybe we will get an idea when the movie finally releases?
I have heard from Light Novel readers that the volumes the movie will adapt are some of the best in the entire series so that it exciting.   

Tokyo Ghoul: Re, Anime Review. Declining Right Into The Dumpster.

two-star-rating
Coming into the Tokyo Ghoul anime adaptation, I was pretty sure I was going to be in for a rough time, given its infamous portrayal of Sui Ishida’s original manga.
Thankfully, I found season one and √A to be good adaptations.
Granted, they both had a lot of problems but, overall, I think they are both pretty decent.
This was not the case for the Tokyo Ghoul: Re adaptation, this time directed by Odahiro Watanabe.
Studio Pierrot really dropped the ball here.
There is so much wrong with this anime that I do not even know where to begin.
How about I start with how they packed 179 chapters into just 24 episodes?
This was a phenomenally bad idea because of how much they had to cut or outright skip just to get to the end.

eto ghoul
Some of my favourite moments from the manga, like Kaneki’s up close reaction to Eto revealing she is a ghoul, are completely gone.

Events from the manga that had such an impact came and went so fast that they left no impact at all.
Not only this, but the anime adapts Re as if √A never happened, so the people who only watched √A would have been thoroughly confused watching.
Along with this, it’s clear that the people adapting the manga had only a surface level understanding of it.
Key traits of characters that deliver hidden messages, like Kaneki rubbing his chin when he lies are missing entirely.
The animation is also terrible, with the fights lacking all substance.
To make matters worse, it’s not just the fight animation that sucks but the regular animation as well.
Just compare how the characters look when comparing Re to the first two seasons.
The characters in Re just look so bland and lifeless.
Something is also wrong with the color, which just looks dreary, and not in a good way.
Coming back to the characters though, they are terrible adaptations as well, with much of their development cut or changed for some reason.
When Kaneki realizes he killed hundreds, possibly thousands of innocent people when he became the dragon he barely reacts to it, unlike the manga where he breaks down.
How are we supposed to get attached to a character who shows no emotion after they learn they have accidentally become a mass murderer?

2020-05-14 (1)

awful adaptation
Look at this comparison between the anime and manga of Kaneki’s encounter with a hallucination of Rize. Manga Kaneki clearly has more emotion compared to anime Kaneki.

And then there’s Tooru.
Even though I didn’t like Ishida turning him from a likeable character into a psychopath in the manga, I can at least admit that it was done well.
In the anime, it’s awful.
Tooru is normal one moment and completely sadistic the next.
His transformation was obviously cut for censorship reasons, as was much of the violence to the point that characters who look barely injured die, when in the manga they died from extensive injuries.
Probably the worst part about this anime, though, is not the stupid changes, awful pacing, or terrible animation, but just how boring it all is.
I really had to struggle to get through the second half of the adaptation, which just shows how bad it is.
Whenever I read the manga, I often feel exhilarated but, when watching the same scenes in the anime, I feel nothing but boredom because of how poorly adapted it is.
Almost every single aspect from the manga is downgraded into dumpster quality.

furata
I was genuinely glad when the last episode finally ended because I no longer had to watch this terrible adaptation.

However, there are a few saving graces that stop the adaptation from being a complete disaster.
The music and the voice acting are still good, and there are some funny moments (although this should be credited to Ishida and not the anime).
Also, the two openings, “Asphyxia” and “Katharsis”, are actually very good, showing way more effort than √A’s opening “Munou”, which was just bad.
And that’s it.
The music, voice acting, a couple of funny moments, and the opening.
Those are the only good things about this anime that stop is from being the worst.
Everything else about it is a spectacular failure.
People say Tokyo Ghoul should get the Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood treatment and they’re right because Tokyo Ghoul deserves so much better than what Studio Pierrot gave it.
Sadly, if we ever do get another adaptation, I doubt it will be anytime soon.
And until we do (if we ever do), we will be stuck with this awful adaptation of Tokyo Ghoul: Re as its anime sendoff.
Well, on the plus side, Ishida recently revealed he is working on a new manga so we have that to look forward to, at least.

Tokyo Ghoul Season One Review: A Rush to a Killer Finale.

4 stars
Before watching Tokyo Ghoul, many people suggested I should read the manga first because the anime was a bad adaptation.
In reading Sui ishida’s manga, I found a fantastic story and a solid yet flawed experience in its sequel Re. 
Well, after watching the first season of the anime adaptation, produced by Studio Pierrot and directed by Shuhei Morita, I can see what people were talking about.
This is not to say that season one is a bad adaptation but it falls quite far from the successes of the manga.
The reason for this mostly comes down to how rushed the story is and the switching around of arcs.
Take the first episode, for example.
I was pretty surprised by how much was adapted in so little time.
Honestly, I expected the first episode to encompass the first chapter, with it ending when Kaneki wakes up, revealing his ghoul eye and noting that his life is a tragedy.
But the episode went ahead of this moment and adapted much more for the first episode, resulting in scenes going by much too fast to be as impactful as they were in the manga.

tragedy 1
I feel like the first chapter should have been extended to make a single episode that builds to the final reveal of Kaneki being turned into a ghoul.

This rushed quality persisted right up until the end, and was not helped by the removal of entire scenes.
Season one should have been around twenty episodes instead of twelve.
The second big issue is the switching around of arcs with the Gourmet Arc happening before the Doves Arc, which came first in the manga.
The Doves Arc being moved behind the Gourmet Arc made certain things not make a lot of sense in the anime.
However, despite these problems, I still found the first season of Tokyo Ghoul to be a good adaptation.
Even though much of the story is rushed and some story arcs happen sooner than they are supposed to, certain scenes are adapted fairly well and the characters are all wonderfully brought to screen.
Kaneki (Natsuki Hanae), Touka (Sora Amamiya), Rize (Kana Hanazawa), Amon (Katsuyuki Konishi), Tsukiyama (Mamoru Miyano) Jason (Rintaro Nishi), and many characters are all done justice with their portrayals and voice acting.
The best example of this is Juuzou because both his Japanese voice actor Rie Kugimiya and his English voice actor Maxey Whitehead all do an incredible job as the character.
I remember hearing Juuzou speak for the first time in both sub and dub and thinking both were perfect.

crazy little s we know and love
Juuzou is perfectly adapted into the anime, with both Japanese and English voice actors doing an amazing job.

Along with the great voice work, another quality of the anime that I enjoyed were some of its original scenes.
The anime hyped up Jason a lot sooner and that made the build up to his torture of Kaneki in the finale a lot better.
Speaking of that finale, I was considering this season an overall average adaptation, what with the rushed nature and switched around arcs of the anime but then, “Ghoul” happened.
“Ghoul” is a good season finale that perfectly adapted Jason and Kaneki’s epic fight.
The only problem I had with the episode was its censoring of numerous violent scenes and a couple of changes in Kaneki being immediate, rather than gradual.
Watching Kaneki take on Jason to the spectacular theme of Unravel made the entire season feel worth it and was the best way to end it.

kaneki unravels
The Kaneki vs Jason fight is the highlight of the season.

As for Unravel, it is already one of my favourite anime openings of all time.
Everything from the music, visuals and symbolism is just incredible.
Unfortunately, the few incredible aspects of this anime, like Unravel and the final episode, would not be continued in the follow up season of √A, which has a lot more problems, but we’ll get to that later.
All in all, the first season of Tokyo Ghoul is a solid adaptation.
Sure, it has its problems, like the rushed story, switched arcs, and missing scenes, but the adaptation of certain scenes, voice acting, final episode, and Unravel make up for it.