27 July 2007

Two Strikes for Amazon

This is strike two, Amazon.

I preordered HP and the Deathly Hallows before noon on the date required (July 17th) to get "guaranteed delivery". I wasn't banking on getting it then- I'm no Potterphile- but it would be nice to have it on the day of release so I don't hear spoilers, I thought.

So they ship the other portion of my order-- Kushiels Justice-- and I received that book. The 21st comes and goes. No shipment of Harry Potter. What the heck?

I check the estimated delivery date. July 28th-30th. Huh? Okay....so I check the help site. It claims that you must have ordered standard or prime shipping to get the book guaranteed on Saturday. Nowhere on my order form when I submitted it did it state that particular fact, or I would have been sure to choose standard shipping.

It's not THAT big of a deal, though, but it irks me that it's July 26th and it hasn't shipped yet How do they expect to meet the expected shipment date? So I e-mailed Customer Service about
it. They responded with what I thought: since I chose free shipping I wasn't guaranteed delivery on the 21st and my order was being prepared for shipment now. 

I get a shipping confirmation this morning. I go to track my package and they had changed the estimated delivery date to the 28th-31st. Again, not THAT big of a deal but all of this put together just bugs the crap out of me. Amazon used to be dependable and super fast and that seems to have gone out the window. Way to drop the ball. You'd better be glad I'm not a crazed Harry Potter fan!

For enlightenment, the first strike was when I preordered Guild Wars Nightfall. I was supposed to get a key to be able to play it two days earlier than everyone since I preordered. Amazon had nothing set up to give those out, in fact, I got the game several days after it had come out. So why did I PREORDER!? I'm never preordering a game from them again. Looks like books are out of the question too.

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26 July 2007

Rebuild of Evangelion Trailer

So I saw the Rebuild of Evangelion trailer last night. Yeah. It had some reused scenes and some inserted "new fangled technology" that fits horribly in with the old animation. 

The music's always good, though.

Good luck with that, Gainax.

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25 July 2007

Rebuild of Evangelion!?


Not only did they destroy the NERV and SEELE logos, my spidey-sense tells me that if they cannot do it right after a series, extra episodes and two movies, that this somehow, SOMEHOW a series of movies is not going to make it any better.

Rebuild of Evangelion

No seriously. Let's look at what Wiki says about this new series of movies:

Potentially Bad Things:

"A new design for Unit-01."

So one of the things that the series did right, seriously sweet, identifiable mechas that people happen to now have artbooks, tshirts, figurines and not to mention respect for...is changing?

"Several iconic scenes from the original series that have been recreated almost shot for shot, re-animated with modern digital animation techniques."

Again, Eva's animation was one of the things I DID NOT have any gripes with! Why!? And what's this "almost shot for shot" and "several" scenes? How much are they going to change?

Potentially Good Things:

"Another story change is that Kaworu will make a much earlier appearance; in the series, he was not introduced until episode 24"

Thank you! In the series all of a sudden Kaworu appears and you're like...what the...? More insight into Kaworu would be helpful.

But that's really it...

More comment as more information is available.

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10 July 2007


I herald the Apple TV for having a trailer for Paprika. The movie, not the spice...although paprika on deviled eggs is pretty tasty...

Wiki slap on Paprika (2006) . (Warning: Spoilers on Wiki).

At first I thought that the 13 year gap it took to make the movie out of the novel was a long time, but it pales to the likes of Metropolis which was made out of its 1949 manga counterpart. No matter, despite the long waits, both of these movies were exceptional. While I'll have to wait until later to talk about Metropolis, I saw Paprika last night and have to talk about it.

Paprika introduces us to a world not far in the future where an apparatus called the "DC Mini" is created by a genius who wishes for people to be able to share their dreams with friends. The DC Mini is being used to help in psychological therapy by viewing and analyzing dreams of patients. Unfortunately, the DC Mini turns out to be a more dangerous piece of technology than anyone imagined, capable of functions that, exploited by the wrong people, can be devastating as well as maddening. In the movie you get to explore the true last, vast frontier for humans: the dream-world. We see the characters struggle with their own pasts, confront themselves to be able to make it through the wilderness that is the human mind.

While Paprika was surely no Spirited Away, it deserves a serious watch and commendation. The animation is brilliant, weaving between dream and reality- sometimes lurching from one to the other purposely, leaving you with a feeling of psychological whiplash. For the most part the plot was excellently accomplished, closing with an ending reminiscent of the Neon Genesis Evangelion movie.

Maybe it deserves a second watch, but the characters could have been stronger; the most developed was the genius Tokita. Though the character association between Chiba and Paprika was interesting, for its importance it was relatively downplayed, anti-climactic and largely unexplained. I am no newcomer to unexplained plot in anime, however, the Chiba-Paprika relationship was one that I was disappointed to find unexplored. The plot arc with the cop Konakawa held my interest through the entire movie, but with all that was going on with the half dozen major characters in the plot, many of the characters didn't get the depth that they were entitled. Perhaps a visit to the manga is in order. I have a feeling it suffers from the same syndrome that Harry Potter movie 4 and LOTR suffered from.. wonderful but LONG story that some pieces simply must be cut out of to fit the entire thing into one film.

Also: please leave out love stories if they are going to seem like last minute throw-ins!

Susumu Hirasawa rocks the soundtrack. He also did the music for Paranoia Agent.

All in all, Paprika is a wonderful movie experience that we here in America are largely unable to experience through Hollywood. I made the comment in the first minutes of Paprika that "This seems like a movie that American cinema would try but utterly fail at...", and it was. Go watch it!

Plotline: Excellent
Characters: Good
Music: Very Good
Animation: Excellent

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03 July 2007

A Second Wind

Oh yes. It is time to start the fun back up, boys and girls. There is so much I need to cover, including:

  • Witch Hunter Robin
  • Ranma
  • Magic Knights Rayearth
  • Tenchi Muyo
  • Deep Space Nine (wait, that's not anime!)
  • Lain
  • And much more...!