LAST UPDATED 10-16-2017 NOW SHOWING: ♥♥ FALL Falling For Them Part 2 and 3 on September 22 and 29 ♥♥ Good Morning Call Season 2 jdrama on September 22 ♥♥ Sengoku Night Blood anime on October 3 ♥♥ Code Realize anime on October 7 ♥♥ Dance with Devils: Fortuna movie on November 4 ♥♥ COMING SOON: 2017: Falling for Sakura book on hiatus will be released on 2017 ♥♥ Red River Chinese drama on 2017 ♥♥ 2018: Dame x Prince Anime Caravan on January ♥♥ Idolish 7 on January ♥♥ Hana Yori Dango- Spring 2018 ♥♥ Nil Admirari no Tenbin: Teito Genwaku Kitan anime -Spring 2018 ♥♥ Yume Oukoku to Nemureru 100-nin no Ouji-sama TV anime series on 2018 ♥♥ Meteor Garden remake ♥♥ Love x Doc live action movie Tokimeki Restaurant ☆☆☆ Miracle 6 anime ♥♥ TBA: B-Project Season 2 ♥♥ Library Cross Infinite ♥♥ Saiunkoku Monogatari Chinese drama ♥♥ To All The Boys I've Loved Before movie ♥♥ Uta Prince no Sama movie ♥♥ Otome Yusha anime ♥♥ Ensemble Cast anime (unconfirmed RH) postponed ♥♥ new Uta Prince no Sama anime ♥♥ Meiji Tokyo Renka TV anime ♥♥ Cocktail Prince anime (unconfirmed RH) ♥♥ Kirimi anime (unconfirmed RH) ♥♥ Chunmong Korean movie ♥♥ Fruits Basket live action movie ♥♥

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Hana Yori Dango and Hana Yori Dango Returns

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By ayreesa

Hana Yori Dango- 9 episodes based on manga "Hana Yori Dango" (Boys Before Flowers) by Kamio Yoko.

Since I havn't read the manga I can't compare which between the two, "Meteor Garden" or "Hana Yori Dango", made a better adaptation. My inspiration in watching this is that I get to see Ikuta Toma in the sequel. It was dragging at first because I already knew the plot..poor girl getting the red note from F4... yadda yadda...enemies to lovers...but before I knew it I was caught in up in their world again. And I got teary-eyed like three times, when she and then her family have to endure hardships.

Hana Yori Dango Returns- 11 episodes

Makino now had to prove their love against all odds. The drama is heavier. It was an exhausting, emotional rollercoaster ride that I just want to give them a smack on their heads. If not for Shun Ogiri I wouldn't be able to finish it. But still, it was way better compared to "Meteor Garden II" in terms of continuity of the tone and treatment.

I thought this was just another drama that will be locked in an attic in my mind, but to my surprise I kind of missed watching the show particularly the antics of Makino and Dyoumji. It kinda grew on me. Superb acting by those two.
Well we get to see the gang again next year, woot~ probably for the last time~ sniffs~ in the movie "Hana Yori Dango Final".



Hanazakari no Kimitachi e or Hana Kimi

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By ayreesa

Hanazakari no Kimitachi e or Hana Kimi (translation: For You in Full Blossom)- 12 episodes
based on Nakajo Hisaya's manga

Ayashi poses as a boy in hopes of convincing her hero into jumping again. "Hana Kimi" is not just a romantic comedy, it is a hilariously, heartwarming series. I'm planning to watch the whole thing again. It's very rare that I rewatch shows or movies. This is my very first jdorama that I've actually followed through until the end. In fact, this one got me into watching Asian soaps again after "Meteor Garden". The actors are very good and I'm smitten over Ikuta Toma (Nakatsu). He's not on the picture though. I like the way they shortened the wait by producing the shortest yet powerful opening that I've ever seen with a nice, upbeat music by Orange Range. Babyyyyyy!

Meteor Garden and Meteor Garden II

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By ayreesa

Meteor Garden- Season 1 30 Episodes and Meteor Garden II- Season 2 31 episodes
based on the manga, Hana Yori Dango

This is the first live series of "Hana Yori Dango" but set in Taiwan with Chinese character names and a different title. Even with all the variations from the manga, it still followed the same plot and conflicts. Shan Chai is the poor girl that goes up against the F4 and it's ringleader, Dao Ming Si and the rest is history. "Meteor Garden" paved the way for asian dramas in the Philippines back in 2003. I caught the fever as well. It's hard to compare two versions that you've watched at an entirely different time. I cringed now at my unwavering fanaticism to "Meteor Garden" then but it was a first of it's kind that I've seen and I did enjoyed it while it lasted. As I matured (perhaps), one thing that didn't changed is that I still like the opening and closing songs of the first season.


Fushigi Yugi Genbu Kaiden



Fushigi Yugi: Genbu Kaiden by Yuu Watase 6 Volumes- ongoing

This is the prequel of "Fushigi Yugi". It shows the origin of the book and the adventures of the very first priestess, Takiko. I was sad after "Fushigi Yugi" ended and I wished it could go on forever. The OVAS were also disappointing. This time I have high expectations that Genbu Kaiden will be worthy successor or erm a predecessor (im confused now lol) of the Fushigi series. I even bought my very first manga after the scanlations run out. I'm just not too keen with the ending since it's already a giveaway.

Please check updated review here

My Heavenly Hockey Club


Gokuraku Seishun Hockey Club (My Heavenly Hockey Club) by Ai Morinaga 3 volumes- ongoing

Hana's hobbies are sleeping and eating but her idyllic world crumbles when she was tricked into joining an all-male hockey club. This is the first time that I've read a manga scanlation and the fansubs are until chapter 3 only. It took me for a moment to realize that I should read it from right to left.^_^;; The plot and the characters are very similar to "Ouran High School Host Club", but I wouldn't mind buying the 2 volumes that I saw the other day in the mall. I'll just wait for the bookstore to run a discounted sale.

Hana Yori Dango

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By ayreesa

Hana Yori Dango (Boys Over Flowers or Boys Before Flowers) 52 episodes! based on Yoki Mamio's manga status: plan to watch

The same manga also inspired the Taiwanese drama "Meteor Garden" and jdorama "Hana Yori Dango". I havn't watched this as well but they basically follow the same plot. Tsukushi is a poor girl who captures the attention of the notorious F4. The group consists of the most powerful boys in their elite school.

Ashita No Nadja

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By ayreesa

Ashita No Nadja-(Tomorrow's Nadja) 50 episodes- Based on Izumo Toda's manga

This is a story of a girl in search of her mother.

Pretear

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By ayreesa

Pretear~The New Legend of Snow White-(Shin Shirayuki Hime Densetsu Pretear) 13 episodes based on Junicho Sato and Kaori Narusi's manga

Himeno was chosen as Pretear to help the seven Leafe Knights fight the Princess of Disaster.
She reminds me of Miaka with her unladylike behavior and clumsiness. I wasn't too excited to watch this because it was based on the fairy tale, Snow White. I thought it will be another magical girl shoujo but still it made me look forward to the growing relationship between Himeno and Hayate and I was surprised and sadden by the twist of the story. Sasame is hot as well and Shin is so adorably cute. Originally, there is another guy who's in love with Himeno in the manga.

Saiunkoku Monogatari

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By ayreesa

Saiunkoku Monogatari (Tale of Saiunkoku or The Story of Saiunkoku or Colourcloud Palace or Tale of Many-Coloured Clouds)- Season 1-39 episodes, season 2-25 episodes and ongoing based on Sai Yukino's manga

Shuurei joins the imperial harem to teach the stupid emperor. It's the beginning of her journey to reach her dreams and ambitions to help build a peaceful and thriving kingdom of Saiunkoku. This is currently my no. 1 favorite anime! It's like the modern counterpart of "Fushigi Yuugi" for me. The story is well-written and each episode has a proverbs theme. I'm also torn between Ryuuki and Sakujun. Sigggghhh! It will be showing in Animax soon but the title will be "Colourcloud Palace". I didn't watched it right away because I read somewhere that it's a Sunday morning anime in Japan, so I thought it will be like "Fruits Basket". But I'm glad I did because all the previous reverse harem animes I've watched paled in comparison. The opening is so dreamy that it makes me nostalgic with the previous episodes and makes me eager for more romance overload.
See Also:

The Wallflower

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By ayreesa

Yamatonadeshiko Shichihenge (The Wallflower or Perfect Girl Evolution of Sunako of Many Forms or My Fair Lady)- 25 episodes based on Tomoko Hayakawa's manga

Sunako was rejected by a boy she liked because she was ugly since then she shuns everything beautiful and bright. Her aunt entrusts then these four bishies to turn her into a lady or else, their rent will increase. This anime is a breath of fresh air against the cutesy, beautiful animes.The jokes are irreverent and the drawings seems crude with Sunako being in chibi form half the time. If you're into gothic and dark anime, then this one's for you. See there's reverse harem for everybody. The soundtrack is also cool especially the rock ballad "slow" by Kiyoharu.

Fruits Basket

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By ayreesa

Fruits Basket- 26 epsidoes based on Natsuki Takaya's manga

Tohru is "adopted" by the Somas and becomes a privy to the clan's secret curse. They transforms into a zodiac animal whenever hugged by the opposite sex or whenever they are under stress. I find this very popular anime too wholesome for my liking even with it's suggestive nudity. Overall it's kawaii and will more likely appeal to younger audience. Despite the clamor by fans it was reported that there wouldn't be a second season. The opening song makes me smile and sad at the same time.

Harukanaru Toki No Naka de- Hachiyo Sho

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By ayreesa

Harukanaru Toki No Naka de- Hachiyo Sho (In a Distant Time~ Hachiyo Chapter or Haruka 8) -26 episodes, 3 OVAS, 1 movie Based on game and serialized into manga by Tooki Mizuno
Broadcast Dates: Oct 6, 2004 to Mar 30, 2005


Akane and her friends are pulled into a different world. She becomes the priestess tasked to search for the eight Hachiyos and the seals of the four gods to bring peace. Yes, very similar to "Fushigi Yugi". The pacing is so slow. It took me a forever to finish this since I got bored with it easily. The ending was sad though because I was again rooting for the villain. You can watch the OVA "Haruka Naru Toki no Naka de Ajisai Yumegatari" for the condensed version.

"La Corda d'Oro" and "Haruka 8" are both based from adventure/dating game from Neoromance. The opening reminds me of a Japanese boy band.
Related:
Harukanaru Toki no Naka de ~Ajisai Yumegatari- 2 eps (Mar 27, 2002 to Jan 23, 2003)
Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 2 ~Shiroki Ryuu no Miko- 3 eps (Mar 23, 2003 to Feb 2, 2005)
Haruka Naru Toki no Naka de: Character specials 8 eps
Haruka Naru Toki no Naka de -Kokoro no Yukue- 1 ep OVA

La Corda d'Oro~ Primo Passo

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By ayreesa

Kin-iro d'Corda or La Corda d'Oro~ Primo Passo (The Golden String or The Golden Cord)- 25 episodes based on RPG game and adapted into manga by Yuki Kuri

Hino Kahoko is just an ordinary student but her life changes when the music fairy gives her power to play the violin. She unwittingly agrees to enter the muscial concours against the music prodigies. The "La Corda d'Oro" is delicately drawn and filled with classical music. It's like a fine dining experience. The story is sweet and captivating at first but it became very serious near the end. The manga is ongoing as well, so if there would a be another season I hope it could redeem itself. I'm one Yunoki's crazed fan, I like his true personality. The operatic pop opening "Brand New Breeze" by Kanon is perfect for the anime and has a recall value.
Also see:

Ouran High School Host Club




Ouran Koukou Host-bu (Ouran High School Host Club)-26 episodes based on Bisco Hatori's manga

If possible it's best to watch the 1st episode without any idea what the plot is going to be. (like me) The school club consists of rich boys rendering their "hosting" skills to the ladies and mocks stereotypical roles like glasses guy type, twincest type, prince type, loli type etc. For all it's silliness, I enjoyed a lot watching this. It's a feel good, light and kawaii anime. The finale was promising and the manga is still ongoing so I do hope they make a second season. I also like the catchy closing song "Shissou" by Last Alliance especially when it was incorporated with the climactic ending.

All through the years I've been looking for animes that are similar to "Fushigi Yuugi". The closest animes that I've found were mostly love triangles like "Ayashino Ceres", "Alice Gakuen" etc. Then I accidentally discovered "Ouran High School Host Club" early January of this year. This was the turning point because I finally realized my holy grail. One of the otaku kid innocently pointed out that the cast is a reverse harem. It was the first time that I had heard of such term. Hence, the reverse harem marathon!

Anime Review: Fushigi Yugi



"Fushigi Yugi" ("Curious Play" or "Mysterious Play") 52 episodes

Miyaka is transported to another world when she opens a mysterious book. She becomes a maiden in a quest for the seven guardians to bring peace to the land. It was on the very top of my all time favorite animes back in college. I was such a fan of the Tamahome-Miaka-Hotohori triangle. But Miyaka's character has also been hated for being clumsy, gluttonous and as well as setting a bad example for teenage sex and early pregnancy. "Fushigi Yugi" aired a very long time ago, so the graphics and color are very dull and rough compared to present animation. This for me is a classic anime that it could live without the OVAs. Excluding the first, the rest of the OVAS failed to recapture the magic and my interest.

spin offs:
Fushigi Yugi OVA 3 eps
Fushigi Yugi OVA 2 6 eps
Fushigi Yugi Eikoden 4 eps