Saturday, March 14, 2015

:boxing: Quick Pick:: Kovalev vs Pascal

In the midst of Premier Boxing Champions taking up most of the spotlight,we have tonight's big match-up between Sergey Kovalev and Jean Pascal on HBO. At least, it should feel big, but the build-up to it, even a month or two out, feels lacking. On top of that, it has some sizable shoes to fill following a very enjoyable night on Spike's PBC broadcast. Nonetheless, it is still an intriguing bout, not only for the match-up itself, but for the importance it holds in both combatant's careers at this point.

Friday, March 13, 2015

:boxing: Quick Pick:: Premier Boxing Champions: Berto vs Lopez & Porter vs Bone

Unlike last week's installment, this "Quick Pick" will actually be more like a…"quick pick". The previous one turned into more of a full-out preview, as it was a special case with the premiere of "Premier Boxing Champions". This time, however, it is the "B-Side" of its kickoff, featuring the TV-friendly, but less-marquee bouts of Andre Berto-Josesito Lopez and Shawn Porter-Erick Bone Shawn Porter-Roberto Garcia (Note: the more famous and unrelated Danny Garcia is also going to be featured on PBC on Apr. 11, fighting Lamont Peterson. The official website simply lists "Garcia", which can be misleading, so his name is initialized in the title.) (UPDATE: R. Garcia missed weight and has been replaced). And reflecting the billing, they will be broadcast at 9pm on Spike TV (and also online?), not NBC or CBS.

Friday, March 06, 2015

:boxing: Quick Pick:: Premier Boxing Champions' Premiere: Thurman vs. Guerrero & Broner vs. Molina

Saturday night marks the historic (but-not-very-historic-because-we've-had-boxing-on-network-TV-a-few-times-in-the-last-decade-or-so-but-it's-been-awhile-so-ok-whatever) return of boxing to primetime network television, in the form of "Premier Boxing Champions", a program debuting on NBC at 8:30pm, but will have future air dates on CBS and Spike TV, as well (brought to you by master butcher everyone's favorite clandestine boxing magnate/former music mogul Al Haymon). I'm not here to wring my hands over Paul Heyman's brother-from-another-mother, whine about the demise of a sport that people still show plenty of care and money for (which, if anything, looks to be in the most positive state it has been in years), talk one word about "that fight" beyond these own, or wax globs of poetic about boxing's past on network TV and how things aren't the way they were back then—I'm here to talk about what's taking place on PBC…

Thursday, March 05, 2015

:anime: The After-Review:: Alien 9

Welcome to the party…

(Click here for the preceding review!)

The After-Review: Alien 9

Sometimes, there are things you would like to say in a review, but quite can't for any variety of reasons—don't want to spoil anything,\; too trivial; doesn't really fit in; would really like to say that about a character; but it's not the place, etc. A review tends to be a more formal, focused, and thoughtfully laid-out piece, so I thought, "Why not have something like an "after-party"…but for reviews?"

This originated following 2011's Highschool of the Dead review, as I really wanted to touch on some specific points in the series and talk a little more candidly about it. As badly as I wanted to, I lacked the time to pull it off, and once I actually did, too much time had elapsed where it made any sense to do so. Though I've done other reviews since, I either did not feel the need to do one or thought I had too little to say to warrant one.

Well, Alien 9—thankfully—lends itself that opportunity, so here we are with HardDoor's first ever "After-Review"! Like a good ol' after-party, an "after-review" is much more informal and casual. There is no real format, anything is fair play, and we might go a little off-topic (but magically stay on it!). "Don't want to spoil anything…too trivial…doesn't really fit in…would really like to say…", it's all OK here, and we might go a little bit "behind-the-scenes", too. And since spoilers abound, you have been warned—just now. (Really: read this after you've watched the show. We can wait… ;) )

So grab a favorite beverage of yours from the bar (I'll take on the root beer float), loosen up the tie (don't know what the ladies can loosen up, just be careful nothing pops out, 'kay…), and kick back as we talk a little bit more about Alien 9

Saturday, February 28, 2015

:anime: Final Impression:: Alien 9

You can expect a lot of this…

[Also February's Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick!]

Review: Alien 9
Alt. Title: Alien Nine

Additional Links: ANN Entry, MAL Entry, HD's After-Review
Video {Free [Streaming]}: Hulu

Debuting in 2011, Puella Magi Madoka Magica captivated scores, even non-fans, with its gripping and emotional tale about "magical girls" and what it truly meant to be one. Its subversion of the genre, depth, and level of mastery led to being considered among the best anime ever made. Its approach of the subject was novel, as well, but Alien 9—a now-obscure TV special/OVA made a decade prior—not only compares favorably to it, but perhaps surpasses its poignant heights.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

:boxing: Boxing Bits ::01.31.15:: (or Boxi-Jour…Nah…)

The month of January is drawing to a close, so I thought I would close it out by doing something a little different. This little month-in-review edition of Boxing Bits is being done "Ani-Journal" style, which will feature me basically shooting the breeze about the boxing scene in an (largely-)informal manner.

So yeah, about this month…

Thursday, January 08, 2015

:anime: Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick of the Month Friendly Reminder:: Saenai heroine no sodate-kata. (Saekano: How to Raise a Boring Girlfriend.)

As you may know, HardDoor is commemorating noitaminA's 10th anniversary by showcasing its debuting anime as the "Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick(s)" of their respective months. Similar to what was done with Terror in Resonance's start, this is a friendly public service reminder that this month's Pick will be Saenai heroine no sodate-kata., or "Saekano: How to Raise a Boring Girlfriend.", its official English title (in case you are wondering, "Saekano" is the series' nickname—born either organically or from its producers—and should not be confused with the now-obscure classic, SaiKano (which is returning stateside!)).

With a light splash of Pygmalion, this tale of a motley crew of high-school talents working to create a game worthy of Comiket is debuting today—and for free—at Aniplex Channel, Crunchyroll, and Hulu, in Japanese with English subtitles.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

:anime: Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick of the Month:: Tales of Gen

Given yesterday's semi-review of ALDNOAH.ZERO's first half, the debut of its second half in a few days, Expelled from Paradise pulling over $1M in just 13 Japanese theaters, and the PSYCHO-PASS movie coming out next Friday, I figured now would be a good time for anyone new to his work to get better acquainted with some of the previous work in his repertoire. And by "his," I mean Gen Urobuchi, the hottest and most in-demand name in the anime industry today.

First rising to notoriety with his writing work at game company Nitroplus (most notably on Saya no Uta), he rapidly rose to super-stardom after penning Puella Magi Madoka Magica in 2011. He's been having a very busy, but very successful, time since then, including this past year, and does not seem to be letting up anytime soon. While you await for his next slate of work, or are looking for something to marathon through New Year's Eve/Day and this holiday weekend, you can take a look at some of his anime contributions, nearly all of it online and streaming for free!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

:anime: Ani-Journal - For December 30, 2014

Everyone's favorite scrapped princess…

For whatever reason, I keep thinking that I have done a bunch of these, but in reality, this is only the sixth entry in "Ani-Journal" (or is that "of"? "In" makes more sense because it's like a journal and stuff, but "of" is more grammatically-correct…). So, without further ado, here is an all-new entry in/of Ani-Journal!

—In spite of the allure of Fate/Zero's Ei Aoki collaborating with that novel's author, Gen Urobuchi, for the then-new ALDNOAH.ZERO, I was not exactly enthralled with what was yielded in its first couple of episodes. Its premise was interesting, for sure, with its tale of haughty human Mars-dwellers raining down upon the Earth with their almighty space castles to subjugate it under a cloud of political upheaval on their end and the Earthers having to find a way to stop them with their inadequate mecha (this being a mecha show and all). The way it played out early on, though, also proved interesting, but not altogether exciting or that interesting. If anything, there was more of an air of familiarity and routine to it than any real whiff of originality (and this is not taking into consideration the strange vibe of a more modern, reworked Martian Successor Nadesico). For all of the hype, it was "good" but nothing "great", and if you are pimping out a show (or anything, for that matter), it better be "great".

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.