- "Sonic Boom" - Maaya Sakamoto, Tsubasa Chronicle Shunraiki Opening
I finally got to watch the Tsubasa Shunraiki OAD/OVA. As I thought, I definitely like the new opening, "Sonic Boom," sung by our Tomoyo-hime's seiyuu Maaya Sakamoto after another listen. The lyrics are quite beautiful, as expected from Maaya. I have mixed feelings about the actual episode itself. Overall, I was more awed by the production quality of Tsubasa Tokyo Revelations. It annoys me that the whole Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicles franchise has gotten such a shoddy animation treatment. Don't get me wrong, I'm ecstatic about the possibility of getting even these OVAs, but I would have preferred a solid third season without missing arcs, without having to wait months for a single episode. Lol. I don't mind that we skipped several arcs straight to the Nippon arc because we get to see our darling Tomoyo-hime again!
The best part about this first episode is Tomoyo-hime. Some of the character designs were unstable throughout the episode, but Tomoyo-hime was very lovely as usual. And it was so nostalgic to hear Maaya Sakamoto using a princess-voice again after her run of boyish-sounding characters, ie. Haruhi, Ciel and Crona. Nippon Arc is all about Kurogane, so we see little of Sakura-hime and Syaoran. But next episode will be exciting with Syaoran vs. Clone!Syaoran. Kurogane is a character that has really grown on me through the course of TRC.
On a side note, I have grown very desensitized to limbs chopped off here and there and eyeballs gouged out and whatnot. Sighs... I'm so squeamish with gore, too. Watching the scene where Kurogane chops off his arm in color made me wince a bit. But it segues very nicely into my next review.... The return of Fullmetal Kurogane!... Oops, I meant, Fullmetal Alchemist, Edward Elric.
Fullmetal Alchemist 2: Brotherhood is awesomeness! I was a little wary at first, as I mentioned earlier, but the first episode brought me straight back into nostalgic mode for good old Edward, Al, Roy Mustang and Maes Hughes! It's taking me time to get adjusted to Roy's new seiyuu (who is King Touya in Tsubasa), but then again, Roy is one of the characters who diverges a lot from the manga to the first Bones anime adaptation. I actually like the first Bones character designs better because they're more suited for fluid animation, whereas this adaptation sticks closer to the original Hiromu Arakawa manga designs. But as can be expected from a Studio Bones project, the action, the production quality, the music, everything is executed superbly. I noticed a bit more manga elements in this first episode though, which was just an action-packed, character-slammed, never still for a moment introduction episode. Anyhow, I'm looking forward to the upcoming episodes which return back to the beginning.
I think I'm going to get very addicted to the new opening and ending soon. I originally thought Sid's "Uso" would be a better Opening Theme and Yui's "Again" a better Ending Theme, because I heard it first and was addicted immediately. But both songs are so catchy, I bet they'll wind up on my playlist. I've always liked Yui, and I wasn't sure if I would like the new opening for FMA 2, but it's grown on me really fast. The chibi ending animation for Sid's "Uso" is cute, but I would have preferred a more serious animation to match such a beautiful song (but Bones seems to have used up their budget on the Opening sequence.)