Sunday, November 30, 2014

:anime: Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick of the Month:: Japan Anima(tor)'s Exhibition

© nihon animator mihonichi, LLP
(Picture Source: Edited from Official Site (banner image))

Japan Anima(tor)'s Exhibition

Official Site: Japanese/English
Video (Free {Streaming}): Japanese with English Subtitles

For a while, I have been searching around for a short anime (particularly an independant) to spotlight for Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick of the Month. I really couldn't settle on anything in particular, so the idea fell onto the backburner. Thankfully, the arrival of the "Japan Anima(tor)'s Exhibition" fulfilled what I was looking for, and more.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

:boxing: Quick Picks, Road Editions (Hopkins-Kovalev, Pacquiao-Algieri)

With two big/notable fights having occurred this month, Hopkins-Kovalev and Pacquiao-Algieri, you may be wondering that HardDoor has been inconspicuously silent the whole time. In reality, if you have noticed on HD's social networking sites, Quick Picks have been "taken on the road" this month, with the former's QP being featured on HD's Facebook page (post-fight comments included) and the latter on HD's Google+ page! I have done something like this in the past, but not to this extent. Still, it was a nice change of pace and show of love to the auxillary sites of HD. If you haven't yet, you can check them out at the links above. Hope you will enjoy (post-Pacquiao-Algieri comments will come after I watch the replay [EDIT: Now available here!!])…


Friday, October 31, 2014

:anime: Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick of the Month's Fifth Anniversary!!

HD's "Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick of the Month": Sinking its teeth into legally-free and -low-cost anime since 2009!

A little over five years to the day, "Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick of the Month" first began on October 28, 2009 with manglobe's dark comedy short, TRIP TREK. Since then, somewhere between 70 to 100+ titles have been spotlighted (depending on how you count the batch entries), with the most recent being this month's selections of PSYCHO-PASS 2 and Your lie in April (which is a really fine show, thus far), part of HardDoor's commemoration of noitaminA's 10th anniversary.

Since choosing a title like TRIP TREK, I normally like to pick a work that is befitting of the Halloween season for each anniversary. Since neither noitaminA series falls under that category, I would like to point you towards one that not only works quite well with the holiday, but also ties in to both noted anniversaries.

Friday, October 10, 2014

:anime: HardDoor's Seasonal Anime Preview 2014-15 Special:: noitaminA (Autumn, Winter)

The autumn season is upon us and so is the second leg of noitaminA's 10th anniversary celebration! For the fall season, the much-pushed and -anticipated Your lie in April (Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso) and PSYCHO-PASS 2 will debut, with the former stretching into the winter season and Saenai heroine no sodate-kata. taking latter's slot then. With the number of returning favorites both on- and behind-the-screen, in addition to the amount of heavy-hitting new contributors and elevated profiles of these other anniversary projects to come, perhaps the best fit theme here would be "great expectations"…

Let's not waste any more time, here's noitaminA's upcoming slate for the autumn and winter 2014-15 seasons!!

(…But before we make haste,here's a friendly remember that all noitaminA series debuting throughout the duration of the block's anniversary will automatically be the "Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick" for their respective months (given that it a distro is available)!!)

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

:anime: Free/Low Cost Anime Pick of the Month:: NANA


Official Sites: Japanese, English
Additional Links: NANA Franchise Official Site, ANN Entry, MAL Entry
Video [Free {Streaming}]: Neon Alley, Hulu
Video [Pay {Download-to-Own}]: iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Xbox Video

A funny thing happened on the way to coming up with September's (belatedly-posted) Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick. First, the original intended pick, Char's Counterattack--I discovered--was set to expire by the end of the month, not leaving a whole lot of time for anyone to really watch it. Then I turned to a few alternative picks I had in mind, only to find that I would rather save those particular ones for later time. With personal matters to attend to on top of that, I was in something of an extended bind.

In the midst of this, however, something dawned on me: "Have I ever showcased NANA?" Sure enough, nearly five years after doing these, I never, ever have. Well, that changes here, as one of the finest anime ever made is September's (retroactive) selection!!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

:boxing: Quick Pick:: Mayweather vs Maidana II

Last time we were here for Mayweather-Maidana, I picked Floyd Mayweather, Jr. to win, not so much because his skill set or him being a better fighter, but because Marcos Maidana posed more questions than definitive answers as to whether he could truly upend the fighter with his own formidable toolset and skills. Their fateful May 3rd encounter developed those answers as the Argentine gave the American all he could handle with a smothering assault and making him fight less characteristically.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

:anime: Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick of the Month:: God Mars

God Mars

Additional Links: ANN Entry, MAL Enrty
Video [Free]: Hulu

For July's Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick, I have decided to go a more obscure and old-school route, and at the end of that road is…God Mars!

Even as a huge, long-time mecha fan, I had never heard of "God Mars", much less knew that TMS Entertainment (Rose of Versailles, Lupin III, Akira, Itazura na Kiss, Yowamushi Pedal (Yowapedal)) ever made a mecha show (though I always wondered…). The 64-episode series centers on a young man named Takeru Myojin, whose strange dreams and hallucinations give way to the revelation that he is the son of a malicious emperor from another planet, sent as an infant (along with a giant robot) to destroy the planet Earth, whose expansion into space he saw as a threat.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

:boxing: Boxing Bits ::08.21.14:: Brook Shocks Porter, Big Knockout Boxing Debuts

In a battle of contrasting youths, an unknown beats a growing name, and a new boxing promotion tries to shake things up all in one night in this installment of "Boxing Bits"…


Kell Brook MD Shawn Porter

Prior to Saturday night, IBF Welterweight Champion Shawn Porter was one of the hottest up-and-coming commodities in boxing. His power, speed, and take-no-prisoners tenacity made him one of the more enjoyable combatants to watch, and his recent demolition of Paulie Malignaggi was sight, if not a very concerning one, to behold. His Aug. 16th bout against little-known English contender Kell Brook was seemingly another rung to climb over on his way to the top of the ladder.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

:boxing: Boxing Bits ::08.13.14:: Golovkin, Garcia Dominate, Rios-Chaves Unresolved, Jennings Unimpresses

Three weeks of boxing have gone by and a few big match-ups have come and gone. Let us look back (fondly and perhaps not…) in this new installment of Boxing Bits!!


Bryant Jennings SD Mike Perez

For two top-ranked heavyweights, Jennings and Perez fought as decently as one might expect from the division this day. In the larger context of history and as potential opponents for Wladamir Klitschko, there was little to be inspired by and even less to be fearful of by the longtime kingpin. The bout primarily consisted of both men lumbering around and throwing punches. There was nothing notable or standout about the affair. Neither asserted themselves as a frontrunner. Neither created any sort of compelling case not only as contenders, but as worthwhile heavy draws.

There was little distinction between the two, beyond Jennings getting the slight better of the exchanges. He may have set himself up for a chance to contend for the heavyweight championship, but if Bryant and Mike Perez represent the future of the division--one so lackluster, yet still so sorrily tied to the public's subconscious as the marquee and measuring stick of the sport--then the future is not looking any brighter…

Thursday, July 17, 2014

:anime: Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick of the Month:: PSYCHO-PASS: Extended Edition

PSYCHO-PASS: Extended Edition

Official Sites: Japanese, English
Additional Links: HD noitaminA Preview Entry (original series)
Video [Free]: (New eps.: subscribers-only first week, everyone else one week later), Hulu (new eps. one week later)

File this under "surprise", but in my wait for Terror of Resonance to be posted onto Hulu, I happened upon the special extended edition of the PSYCHO-PASS, instead! Titled, of course, as PSYCHO-PASS: Extended Edition, this version of the hit anime series consolidates the original 22, half-hour-long episodes to 11, hour-long episodes with all-new additional footage. It focuses on the  efforts of a law-enforcement group that uses weapons capable of ascertaining a person's true nature and the troublesome relationship between "Inspectors" and their "Enforcer" partners--individuals marked as "potential criminals" by the devices.

I never heard about FUNimation intending to stream this series, nor did I bother giving it an entry in the spring/summer noitaminA preview, given its format. Despite all of this, I am adding this to this month's already-hefty list of Free/Low-Cost Anime Picks because of noitaminA's 10th anniversary and each of the block's anime automatically counting as Picks when they debut for the year. Not to mention, a lot of people like the series, as well, so here is something for them to look forward to. New episodes of the series are available first at (under the "Special [#]" subheaders) and a week later at Hulu, in Japanese with English subtitles.