zondag 31 oktober 2021

Unboxing Zero Two Nendoroid

 A recent acquisition from AmiAmi, this Nendoroid of Zero Two, the femme fatale (literally!) from Darling in the Franxx has been a welcome re-release.

Her original run had skyrocketing prices, but as she was announced as a new run, she came down to 4450 yen, a steal!
So without further ado, let's have a look!

Yeah, she is truly gorgeous, and I`m glad she is the one that popped my Nendoroid cherry, more will definitly follow as these are fun models!
Just look at that totally kawaii face...


donderdag 28 oktober 2021

How Not to Summon a Demon Lord

 The latest "evening in the couch with Noshi" anime series we have been watching, this one has been on our MAL Plan to Watch for a while.

And yes, it's another isekai, a genre we quite like!

In the MMO game Cross Reverie, Takumo is the top of the hill as Demon Lord Diablo.  However, one day he is summoned into a real fantasy world resembling the game.  This is due to a ritual performed by the pantheria adventurer Rem and the elf princess Shera L. Greenwood.  But Takuma has retained his powers and level of his online alter ego, and the ritual rebounds enslaving the two girls to him instead.

Now, they must work together to find a way and unbind the ritual, while Rem also carries the soul of a mighty demon lord inside her, Krebskulm.  Diablo vows to help her and crush the evil soul once it is out of her, using all his totally over the top powers in this world to do so.
Diablo saves the city and his friends from the Fallen, who planned on launching a major invasion.  But Shera's crazed older brother, Keera, has devised a plot threatening to launch a war between the elven nation and the humans should Shera not bear his child.  As she chooses to live free, Diablo faces off against Keera, teaching him a serious lesson. 

But as he lets the elven prince go, Keera is killed by the leader of humanity, Galford, who wants to use the conflict as a means to invade Greenwood.  Diablo overcomes what has been his strongest opponent so far, and upon return Edelgard appears.  She will teach Diablo the ritual to draw Krebskulm out of Rem.  

The ritual goes well, but Krebskulm, or Krem for short, turns out to be a tantrum throwing loli.  Alicia, their Imperial Knight friend, however wants to awaken the demon lord's true power to bring death to the mortal races and have a better world been born from that.  When a paladin, Saddler, tortures Rem to near dead, Krem fully awakens and it comes down to Diablo to get her back in check.

A fun series, with some serious tongue in cheeck fanservice jokes, this was a nice little season to be watching in the evening.

Now onwards to the second season!

dinsdag 26 oktober 2021

Unboxing Gundam Universe GU-17 Freedom Gundam

 Recently acquired from AmiAmi, this is of course the most fantastic, beautiful mobile suit ever made: the Freedom.

And I don`t say that only because I`m a total lover of SEED and SEED Destiny.
So let's open the box and have a look at this most beautiful of mobile suit designs.

Of course, this one doesn`t just go inside a cabinet, but instead now adorns my home office desk.

Thanks for watching and until the next unboxing!

zondag 24 oktober 2021

The Haul Report 295: Nendo Addicts store opening

Bingo!  Gigant volume 2 is now in my possession so I can continue reading this series.

I found it over at Bol for a good price, and with the free shipping that was an added bonus.
Nendo Addicts opened their fysical store in Antwerp this week, so I popped in, and brought some Ki-Kat for Noshi...

... and a guilty pleasure anime figure for myself.

So, a fun week it was indeed!

zaterdag 23 oktober 2021

The Quintessential Quintuplets season 2

 The second season of this romcom slice of life series, and one I really enjoyed, is finally upon us.

And it goes all further where we left off, with Futaro in hospital after his illness during skycamp.
He also is treated to the best room and doctors, thanks to the siblings father (and who seems to be the head doctor at the hospital indeed), as Futaro starts connecting dots and it is more and more hinted that his childhood crush from 5 years ago was indeed one of the quintuplets.  But he has no idea which one though, and they can`t seem to remember the events that transpired.
When the siblings get in a fight amongst each other, both Nino and Itsuki move out.  While the former takes residence in a fancy hotel, Itsuki moves in... with Futaro. 

Furing a stay in the park, he meets the girl of five years ago, introducing herself as Rena.  However, it seems this is one of the quintuplets if you take the hints, my money being on... Yotsuba, as she was in the park as well.  After "Rena" says farewell for good, Futaro goes to great lengths in reuniting the siblings and teach them to their exams.  he quits the job as they walk in... and they still manage to flunk.  But they want him as a tutor again, and even rent their own appartment instead, so he can start a new effort of them actually getting decent grades.

During a day at the amusement park, he learns that in order for them to grow, he needs the sisters to teach each other as well in the fields they excel, resulting in each and every one of them, even Yotsuba who was the reason they transferred of their previous school, manage to finally get passing grades!

Never the less, contrary to their gather's wishes, they decide to stay at their current place.  They feel it makes them grow as persons and siblings, and Futaro is part of that progress.  Nino falls heavily for him, and confesses her feelings, putting her at odds with Miku, and unbeknownst, Ichika.

During a trip to a hot spring ran by the siblings grandfather, Futaro vows for himself to learn the small things about them, in order to keep them easily apart.  Later during a school trip, it is revealed the girl in the picture is indeed Yotsuba (ha, I guessed correctly!), but the sisters fall out heavily with each other.  But they reconcile when they decide to give Miku the chance for a day with Futaro, allowing her to confess her feelings.

It is also revealed at the end that the sister he marries is the one that rushed, and kissed, him at the last moments at the spa, under the bell of vows.  But as they where all dressed up as Itsuki, we still haven`t learned her identity.

Maybe next year's movie will shed some more light?

A fun and amusing season once again, and this is rapidly becoming one of my "guilty pleasure" anime's, totally out of my regular alley yet I love watching it.

Yeah, I guess I'll search for the quintuplets as figures as well in the near future hehehe...

woensdag 20 oktober 2021

Super Heavy God Gravion

 The next lunchtime anime, this series, called Choujuushin Gravion in japanese, is up my alley: mecha's!

Bit pity though I could only find a dubbed stream, but that seems to be the case nowadays for the older series, this one hailing all the way back to 2002.

In 2041, the Zeravire appear in our solar system, destroying any military installation they come across.  But a man called Klein Sandman has been preparing a force to oppose this threat, spearheaded by the giant robot Gravion.  When Eiji however secretly enters Sandman base in search of his sister, he meets a young guy called Toga.  Now, together with five more companions, they must take control of the Gravion to face the alien menace.
Their first encounter goes badly as they aren`t used to working as a team, Eiji especially.  Sandman tells him it was him, and not his sister, who wrote the letter but he doesn`t believe it and stays just to find out the truth.  He learns his sister was involved in the project, but went missing during a training excersice.  And who pilots the mysterious sixth vehicle when Gravion combines, as not even the operators at command know who the pilot is.  When she does reveal herself, the team learns she has severe trauma and they work together to get her on her feet again and integrate into the group.

After various attacks, the Earth forces decide to take a stand, but the summit is interrupted by the Zeravire.  Showing how weak the international forces are actually are, Gravion has to take to the rescue.  But it is all part of coordinated attacks, as they also assault the castle base itself.  This forces Eiji to pilot the central module instead, to save the people in the castle.  To do this, he unleashes such a power the robot is serious injury to Eiji, causing heavy damage to the base as well.

Eiji gets seduced by Mizuki, who reveals that she was friends with his older sister, and that the castle towers hold secrets.  They learn about the mysterious power of gravity, and that his sister fled when activating a system console, as they recreate the event.  As a result, he meets his sister in a strange vision during this.

Later on, a Phantom Device, which is an AI pilot, is installed in the Gravion, as Sandman seems to be willing to bring the ultimate sacrifice to defeat the Zeravire when Eiji and one of the operators, Cecile, find themselves in the crosshair, barely escaping with their lives.  This makes Eiji decide he doesn`t want to continue as one of the pilots, but during the next attack he and Leila come to the aid of the team, as the Phantom System seems to be shortcoming in replacing two pilots at the same time.

Okay, so older doesn`t mean bad, and this is a fun series (with some serious fanservice) that basically takes every cliche of mecha anime, and tosses it in your face in a fun way.  Combining into a big robot by multiple vehicles?  Check!  Only effective weapon around?  Check!  Pilot crew that needs to learn to work together?  Double check!!

Good classic fun indeed!

dinsdag 19 oktober 2021

JK Haru is a Sexworker in Another World volume 1 - Ko Hiratori and J-ta Yamada

 Okay, let's get two things straight: I like isekai, and I am "a man of culture".

And I`m not ashamed to admit either of those statements!

So a recent manga I aquired over at Akiba.be is this "parental advisory" labelled story, and yeah, it's a tat different as the name suggests from the typical "young guy gets ressurected in another world to save it as the titular hero" which might even be a name for an isekai come to think of it.
Haru and her classmate Chiba are ran over by a runaway truck during a school outing, and find themselves reincarnated in a harsh fantasy world.  Ironically,  weak Chiba comes with three skills that put him on almost godlike adventurer level, while Haru is on the lowest social ladder.  Women are tools in this world, and in order to survive she starts working the only job she knows: in a brothel.  

In her previous life, she was an escort during her middle school years, so putting those skills to good use in the new one, she craves out a living for herself.  But she wants more in this world, even though she seems to be blocked at every corner in the mysgenic society, meaning she might have to resort to Chiba after all to help her forward.

I must add though, this isn't a hentai book, every action and handling is subtely shaded.  Just to put things into the right perspective you know.

maandag 18 oktober 2021

Unboxing Gundam Universe GU-16 Gundam Exia

 I'll let you in on a little secret.  At work, we all work with numbered cases (1 to xx), and when I picked my number, I went for... 00.

And while the Dynames is the favorite of the show, the Exia of Setsuna is a pretty suit as well I must say, so I took the whole three set release of this wave, the others being Freedom and Heavyarms.

Now let's take a closer look at the figure!

The sword is so gorgeously over the top, and it is a well executed mobile suit for certain, well worth the price!

zondag 17 oktober 2021

The Haul Report 294

 A fresh week, as I have been stocking up some more lecture and stuff... or actually, I did last week.

And the first one is this, errrm, "cultured" isekai.

I obtained it at Akiba in Antwerp Central Station, and I solemly promise I`ll be completing series first now before buying yet another issue 1 of a series...
BUT, there was also a parcel from AmiAmi, containing my Zero Two nendoroid, as well as a nice series of 3 MIA Mobile Suit Gundams!

This post wasn`t uploaded last week as it was Made in Asia, the first convention in 2 years, and last monday I uploaded the show report, of course with some more loot!

zaterdag 16 oktober 2021

Opening the Made in Asia Lucky Bags

 Okay, so over at Made in Asia last week, we decided to buy some Lucky Bags from one of the many vendors.

They came in large, pretty nice cardboard bags, and they would contain 5-6 items of the depicted anime, together with one item totally unrelated.

So biting the bullet we bought two.  One bag was 25 euro, if you bought two it became 45.  We settled on No Game No Life and Date A Live for them, and with low expectations we went home and opened them (sorry about the picture lightning, it was late).

The first bag we opened was No Game No Life, and well, it is a pity the "related items" are all together in one plastic bag inside, so no turn based pulling items out for me and Noshi.

Well, it's basically Wish stuff inside alas.  The plastic bag contains 4 small size posters, doublesided bookmarks, a button, a holographic sticker, and some postcards of which one was a double.  Oh well, it ain`t great stuff, but it has uses.  The buttons go on one of my wall boards, bookmarks van always be used, the stickers will go as usual on my carry case, and I have some ideas for the posters.  They will become backgrounds for the figure cabinets in the living room, as well as go on the large mirror in my atelier.

The non related item was a kitty style mouth mask, which Noshi wanted, and those are sold at cons and stores for 5 euro.  So yeah, not really the value I guess, but not a total loss either.

Opening the Date A Live bag next, we got the exact same stuff as the first one, so there a poster will also be used to decorate our Date A Live shelf.  I like the Kurumi poster btw for my mirror.

The non related item was actually a dakimakura, featuring Sena Kashiwazaki of the anime I Have No Friends.  We haven`t seen that one yet, but it is now on the Plan to Watch list.

And the bags themselves will become decorations in my very deep storage closets...

So are these bags excellent value as advertised?  No, absolutely not, but the dakimakura made up for some of the value for sure, these tend to be sold around 15 to 20 euro we saw at the event.  The other items are fun and have their uses, but don`t expect uber value treasure grabs as such from them!

But heck, it was a fun thing to do, the only thing is that we won`t be doing it again on future conventions, for 45 euro we will carry home a figure for our collection instead!

donderdag 14 oktober 2021

That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime 2 part 2

 Rimuru is back, and now he brought his best friend, the Storm Dragon Veldora, with him.

In the second part of the second season, which aired from the summer until recently, Rimuru and his friends are about to take on the demon lord Clayman.

Responsible for the events that happened in the first part, and which forced Rimuru to kill 200000 people to ascend to demon lord status, he is gathering allies to bring him down.  Not only are the neighbouring nations joining him, he also has Veldora and Diablo now on his side.  But we also learn there are actually 10 demon lords in the world, so mighty alliances on both sides are in the making.

They plan on installing Youm the Champion as the new king of Falmuth, the nation Rimuru defeteated to ascend.  But then Clayman instigates Walpurgis, a banquet where all demon lords attend, and often ensuing in wars as the balance between them gets upset.  He plans to massacre the weakened Eurazania, using the victims to become sacrifices on his assendance to True Demon Lord, but other lords are watching him closely, and why Milim does his bidding, suspecting trickery.  And then Rimuru decides to attend the Walpurgis as well, to take care of Clayman who was responsible for the attack on Tempest...

As Bennimaru and the Beastketeers decimate Clayman's army, the demon lord turns it's commander Yamza into another Charybdis... only to have Bennimaru eliminate it in the blink of an eye.  During the Walpurgis, Clayman tries to manipulate the truth and blame Rimuru in front of the gathering of the 10 demon lords.  It is decreed by the attendants that they should duel it out, and Rimuru's attendants already take care of Clayman and his followers while Rimuru is occupied with Milim.

Veldora comes to his rescue (his power level is over 9000!) and soon Clayman is defeated as it turns out both Frey and Milim where playing him.  He awakens his true form, but Rimuru quickly despatches of him.
The ensuing meeting makes both Carrion, who was hiding under guise with Frey, and Frey herself, step down as demon lords and become subordinates of Milim, much to her despair.  The gathering is renamed the Octagon, for they now number 8, while they investigate the apparent resurrection of Lord Kazilim, master of Clayman and the Harlequins...

Now, don`t get me wrong, this is still a funny series, but it has taken a darker and more serious tone for the second season, instead of the sweet innocence of the first one.  Not that this is a bad thing at all, but it does give a bit of a different vibe to those following Slime, and expected another season of slapstickery adventures of Rimuru.

woensdag 13 oktober 2021

Unboxing Gundam Universe GU-15 Gundam Heavyarms

 A recent model I grabbed over at AmiAmi for about 2000 yen, is the Heavyarms gundam, a suit I always took a liking to.

I`m a bit "pro" the ranged gundam suits, like Heavyarms and Dynames for example, probably because in wargaming I also am a "shooty" player. 

So let's have a look at unboxing the model:

He really looks the deal with the large gatling gun, and I look forward to getting him on a wargame table in the future!

dinsdag 12 oktober 2021

Made in Asia 2021

 FINALLY!  Conventions are back, and while mouthmasks are still a thing, the pandemic is cooling down now a bit.

Which means we can get back to things we enjoy doing, and what better thing to pick up normal life more-or-less then an anime convention.

So the first one we visited in over 3 years is Made in Asia, held in the Expo in Brussels.  Running three days, we went on the sunday.  Hopping on the train in an unearthly early hour, we found ourselves at the Heizel complex, in the shadow of a misty Atomium, at 10h15.

My "need to get"shopping list?  Well, it contained a full TWO items:
1. A mystery bag of some independant artist, to make a fun unboxing post
2. The signature of Onda Naoyuki or Berserk fame, but who worked also on Zeta and ZZ Gundam 

So, nothing to huge, as we are going first and foremost just to have a bloody good time "geeking out"!
The event
Let's start of with some praise on how good the entrance sequence was organised.  We arrived shortly after the doors opened, and could walk in without long lines.  There was a huge gap between the first point, being the Covid check, then the ticket check and finally the entrance itself.   This seemed to prevent (at the time we arrived for sure) the creation of bottlenecks excellently, so points for the organisation. 

Of course, with the day being sold out, the masses gathered over the course of the day, and especially the trader hall would become rather busy around 13h.


The cosplays
As always, there where various levels of cosplay around, it's so great to see all the effort put in that by the community.  Unfortunatly, due to it being really busy in the trader's hall, I didn`t get round to taking to much pictures of them this convention.  But here are a few never the less. 

Baby Goku that I spotted in the crowd was just plain Over 9000!
I hope one day to take Thorin along for some father / son cosplays like these awesome Saints.

A good selection, though some even ran multiple stands.   Prices where all over the place though, for example we saw this Nezuko from Figuarts going as wide as between 55 to 90 euro.

I was happy to learn from a befriended trader that the new people behind the organisation are all zero tolerance about bootleg figures, and if found out had to remove the items from their stands.  But the stuff that was present was quite okay priced, with next to no difference to online sources for the most of the traders, and of course you wouldn`t have shipping fees picking up figures at a convention.

We did "scout out" some very intresting traders, mainly from France, to check out now that the whole importing stuff is such a mess though. 

Nendo Addicts also brought along our pre-ordered Naofumi, thanks for that mate!

One of the things for me that makes Made In Asia so much fun are the various clubs and activities going on, like caligraphy workshops or drawing courses.

My "old club" was also at the event, but there where no known faces present though. 

Of course, as always I was drooling over the Gundam builds on display, they look so awesome!

Ahaaaa, at least one person in the group is a man of excellent taste, justice for Lunamaria!

There was a lovely selection of diorama's present as well.

Judging by the Chinese horoscope, with both Noshi and Thorin being Rats, I have two reserved strategist secretive seducers in the house... oh boy.

While me?  I1m just your social impulsive lunatic apparantly.  Okay, that actually sounds legit...


Some other activities and displays where also around, including things like a VR laser tag arena, lots of videogames, art showings, papercraft, ... a bit for everyone's taste and liking.

You could even let your inner popstar out by either doing anime karaoke or joining in K-Pop dance classes.

Food a plenty, as apart from the onsite catering, there was a lot of oriental stuff to be had as well.  We took some onigiri and daifuki, to be washed down with some pine-apple ramune.  

With a fun glass bottle...

The Loot

Roight, objectives reached!  I managed to get mr Onda's signature, and he was pretty suprised I brought an item of one of his older works to sign (Zeta Gundam).

I also got the lucky bags I wanted, though not from an independant artist as there weren`t any bags there catching my fancy.  Instead they came from larger retailers, so we'll see down the road as I do the post what is in them.

I did however from an artist get some art prints of Saint Seiya drawings he did, namely the Asgard Warriors, the "Ice saints" and Albafica of Pisces, as that is Thorin's constellation.  And some promo posters of MIA itself, and Hathaway's Flash by mr Onda.  Next weekend it'll be decorating time!

So that has been very welcome and fun day, we both needed these type of events again, even though we managed to keep our budget normal and don`t go all convention crazed shopping, how tempting it might have been none the less.

See you next time, and that won`t be taking 3 years again!