Well, I suppose the anime’s character list was looking a little sparse with no cruisers. That’s now fixed. All three Sendai class light cruisers (CL) are confirmed for the anime – Sendai, Jintsu and Naka. But wait, that’s not all! Though character designs are not up on the official KanColle anime website (yet), two more ship girls have been confirmed – lolis destroyers (DD) Hibiki and Akatsuki. That raises the total of confirmed anime ship girls so far to 14: 3 BB, 2 CV, 3 CL and 6 DD. There’s a lot of time left until the Winter 2015 anime season so certainly possible for other ship girls to be added to the anime’s list of characters (e.g. still no heavy cruisers (CA), light carriers (CVL), etc.).
With the release of the first Kantai Collection (“KanColle“) anime PV, I thought it might be useful to post some information for those interested in the anime, but not familiar with the franchise. (FYI – I am playing the game. KanColleViewer mod is awesome!)
Strike Witches – Katayoku no Majotachi (or “One-Winged Witches”) is a two-volume long manga series published in Comp Ace magazine. In terms of timeline, the story takes place parallel to the first season of the anime and details Britannia’s Sergeant Wilma Bishop’s (Lynette Bishop’s older sister) experiences when she joins the Isle of Wight Detachment Group. The story describes the development of Wilma’s relationship with the other members of her squadron: commander Flying Officer Kadomaru Misa (Fuso), Pilot Officer Laura Toth (Ostmark), Pilot Officer Francie Gerard (Liberion), and Sergeant Amelie Planchard (Gallia). In addition to Wilma, a couple other characters have a connection to some of the witches in the 501st Joint Fighter Wing.
This movie is somewhat different from what we normally cover since it’s not about military anime per se. The movie Kaze Tachinu is about Jiro Horikoshi, the creator of the legendary A6M Zero fighter, so it does have a connection to military aircraft. Unfortunately, we see only a glimpse of the Zero and very little of Jiro’s previous creation the A5M “Claude”. Even with the limited screen time of these two iconic Japanese planes, we are treated to a number of pre WWII military aircraft and a look into how Japan’s aircraft industry developed pre WWII.
I’m somewhat unsure as to how to approach this review. Honestly, I have mixed feelings about this anime, and I finally decided that I could treat the movie as a combination of three different movies, each with a different style and subject. We have a fantasy story, which is comprised of Jiro’s dreams of flight and of his hero the Italian aviation pioneer, Giovanni Battista Caproni, which includes a coda set at the end of WWII. We have the bittersweet and tragic romance of his love for the girl Nahoko. Finally, we have a biography of Jiro (though with a great deal of fictional elements) from approximately 1918 (based on the date on the magazine he borrowed) to 1935 (based on the flight of the A5M prototype). All three stories intersect and overlap, but I feel that the stylistic differences create a dissonance that makes them feel disjointed to me. So indulge me while I do three reviews in one.
The success of Girls und Panzer has not gone unnoticed in the anime community. Recently, it was announced that the manga series Military! will receive an anime adaptation. The 4-Koma manga’s story revolves around an ordinary otaku high school boy, Souhei Yano, who is believed to be the savior of a troubled world with two nations at war. One day, two female soldiers from the Principality of Krakozhia, Lieutenant Rtgalnikov and Second Lieutenant Haruka, suddenly appear in their tanks as his guards and hilarity ensues.
OK, I confess. I added the last three words. Still, from what I did read about the series, the focus does seem to be squarely on comedy more than anything else so I’m not expecting another Girls und Panzer here. That’s fine with me since I like a good comedy show (presuming it actually is funny). And yes, I do plan to give the show a try when it airs. 😛