2D Champions Episode 77: The Dragon Dentist

The Champions experience the horrors of giant cavities and learn the importance of flossing with tiny people in our review of ‘The Dragon Dentist’. Directed by Kazuya Tsurumaki with animation by Studio Khara, ‘The Dragon Dentist’ is a special two-part OVA of sorts that is itself a spin-off of one of the Japan Animator Expo short films. Does ‘The Dragon Dentist’ soar above even our highest expectations? Or does it just feel like a story that we dreamed up under sedation? Listen and find out!

Our review of ‘The Dragon Dentist’ begins around the 30-minute mark. The first half of this is episode is a discussion about Crunchyroll’s reduced premium video quality fiasco.

2D Champions Episode 75: Gantz: 0

Gravity guns, skin-tight battle suits, aliens, and a black sphere that can troll you just as easily as it can resurrect you. This all describes a trip to the local DMV but it also names just a few of the things one encounters when traversing the wacky world of GANTZ.

Based on the immensely popular manga by Hiroya Oku, Gantz: 0 is a full CGI retelling of one of the more popular arcs in Oku’s story. This new film hopes to bring new recruits to the franchise but also tries to please long-time fans as well. Does it succeed? Or are the Champions left to do battle with yet another half-hearted adaptation of a popular seinen manga series? Listen and find out!

You can watch Gantz: 0 on Netflix now!
www.netflix.com/

You can support the original comic series here:
www.darkhorse.com/Books/14-734/Gantz-Volume-1-TPB

Space Battleship Yamato 2202 Promotional Video

This looks fantastic. All of those ships. All of those pew pew’s. I loved Yamato 2199 and I can’t wait to see where they take the legendary ship in this new series. It would be nice to see a North American release of this series sometime in the next few decades as well. Maybe before the eventual Yamato 3199 remake.

Blade of the Immortal Live-Action Trailer

Kimura seems to be a good choice for Manji. Otherwise, the jury is still out. I hope that it at least has the fun and excellent choreography of the Rurouni Kenshin films even if it doesn’t end up being a faithful adaptation of Hiroaki Samura’s legendary manga. I was certainly surprised to see Manji and Anotsu facing off against each other at the end of the trailer. I guess they are only planning for this to be a one-film adaptation. I do love samurai film trailers that make it a point to advertise a fight between one (or seven) people fighting hundreds of enemies.

Alien: Covenant Teaser Trailer

Yeah, yeah, I know this is over a month old at this point but I finally decided to write a little bit about the best look we’ve gotten so far at Ridley Scott’s newest attempt to drain any remaining life out of the Alien franchise.

WARNING: Only watch the trailer if you don’t really give a shit about spoilers. Really. This trailer gives away a lot.

The only thing really hidden in the trailer are the monsters themselves (apart from the facehugger). The ad runs as a giant “THIS IS WHAT YOU GUYS WANTED, RIGHT?!” from Ridley to all the fans of the franchise that were disappointed/gutted by 2012’s Prometheus.

I could go on forever about the story and how I thought Prometheus was terrible and that prequels are just a terrible idea but we shall instead focus on what Ridley has always been phenomenal at: his visuals.

The film looks gorgeous. From the set design, to the choice of lighting and shots. It looks properly scary and vast at the same time. I haven’t cared about spoilers for the film as the real enjoyment for me will come from actually seeing what’s on the screen. I’ve been hearing cool things about how the effects team actualized the monsters in the film so I was pleased that most ¬†of all that was hidden in this teaser. The back-buster scene has caused a lot of buzz among the members of the press who saw a preview of the sequence so I’m certainly looking forward to that. Since the story will almost certainly be rubbish, the fun that remains will be in seeing how these monsters (chief among them being the Big Chap) will be realized with modern special effects.

I can’t resist commenting a bit more on the story for the film. It does seem that David is being set-up as the creator of the Alien. This would be tremendously dumb for a dozen different reasons. I feel strongly that if we have to see how the Aliens were created, the creator of this supreme life form should be female, not Michael Fassbender’s android character. This makes narrative sense to me. The aliens themselves are designed with intense gendered imagery in mind and the one who ultimately stops them in the series is a woman. We’ll find out in May if David is truly revealed to have such an important role in the saga.

Another interesting thought that I came across while reading hundreds of comments and articles on Covenant is that now that it appears that Neill Blomkamp’s Alien 5 is pretty much dead in the water, one wonders if these movies are intended to set up an eventual showdown between David and Ripley. That may be a bit too far-fetched. A bit more likely is that, if Covenant is a big hit, this will lead to Fox trying out Alien Vs. Predator again as they try to create a bigger cinematic universe akin to Marvel and DC’s films. Again, I can’t help but think that there is a creative black hole when it comes to ideas for what to do with the Alien franchise. Retcons. Prequels. AVP. Doesn’t anyone have any decent ideas for what to do with Giger’s amazing monster? No? At this point the only person who I think could write a new Alien story with anything truly twisted and new in it is Clive Barker.

I’ll rant some more when the next trailer for the film appears.

Alien: Covenant Poster

alien-covenant-poster

It’s like Ridley Scott and Fox really want me to forget that this is the sequel to Prometheus for some reason.

I do like how the alien here reminds me of the ‘ol chap from Alien 3, which is an excellent take on the monster before it became a sludgy mass of poop-drool in Alien: Resurrection.

Could be good but they’ve gotta work hard to impress me after Prometheus.