Manga Mondays: Anime Adaptions

Well today's Manga Monday is asking about this:

Do certain anime adaptions give their original mangas justice?

We'll explore three different animes, all different in their own ways.

First, we'll start with one that I just recently started watching:

Kaichou Wa Maid-sama!
Left to Right: Misaki Ayuzawa & Takumi Usui ~
Protagonists of Kaichou Wa Maid-Sama
Kaichou Wa Maid-sama is basically about a strict, female student council president who ends up in a strange relationship with a slacker boy at school. This happens and bang-bing-bam-bom-woop! Kaichou Wa Maid-sama is adapted into an anime. So, I've read the manga long before I started watching the anime. I seriously love the manga to death, and all the characters are pretty freaking awesome. (Recommended read)
However, I was skeptical on watching the anime because I didn't know if I would like it. Some way, it might just put me off, kind of like Twilight... No offense (The last Twilight movie wasn't so bad. I liked it a bit. :D )... Yet, I was entirely wrong. The anime is actually just as amusing as the manga. I enjoyed watching it, and I was laughing at parts I laughed at in the manga. Additionally, the anime (so far) is very close to the manga's story line in details, which makes me very happy. As well as the art... Yay art continuity! :D
But of course, the anime does leave some details out (small details that don't really stray away from the main plot line but actions that lead to the resolution might differ). It's not all entirely bad or makes me want to throw the TV across the room, but obviously, they probably won't include every single detail into a 22-24 minute show. 
The Verdict:
Yes. The anime of Kaichou Wa Maid-Sama does give the manga justice. However, as any normal Manga/Anime lover, I would highly recommend the Manga first, then the Anime.
Misaki & Takumi

Our second look is at a considerably popular manga/anime:

One Piece
Background to Foreground & Left to Right:
Sanji, Usopp, Nami, Luffy & Zoro
To be completely honest, I made a whoopsy on this one... I watched the anime first and then the manga (that was a time where I wasn't really into reading mangas or even watching animes. It was mostly on adult swim and Luffy & Sanji made me laugh). From the episodes I have watched and manga chapters I have read, One Piece really sticks to their story considerably well and deserves a well-needed thumbs up. One Piece has also been extremely successful in the selling of manga and anime.
However, just like any other popular anime, it has fillers. If you have seen Bleach and gouged the insides of your bone marrow while watching that FREAKING BOUNT ARC *heaves*, you will understand that some fillers just shouldn't be aired and that some fillers just shouldn't be made. I am by no means saying that "Bleach is terrible. YAYAYAY One piece!" Bleach just has terrible and non-thought-out fillers. Yet, our friend, One Piece, has had profoundly positive feedback from its fillers, making it not seem like a totally hassle to even watch them. (You might even think it is canon!) And the first filler arc of One Piece actually doesn't appear until after the Logue Arc, which is the 5-6 arc, if you don't include the One Piece movie and include the Buggy Arc Special. (Warship Island Arc is the first filler.) 
As well, the art is pretty identical to the manga, which I love. *3*
Yes. The anime of One Piece does provide the manga justice. I saw the anime before I read the manga, and immediately, I fell in love with its story, characters, and art. Seriously, if you had to watch any super popular anime, I would definitely consider One Piece.
Left to Right: Zoro, Nami, Luffy, Usopp, & Sanji

Our last anime adaption will be:

Air Gear
Ikki ~ Protagonist of Air Gear
Let's be honest here: Air Gear is a pretty freaking awesome and kick arse manga. To be honest, it made me proud that I could roller blade and wish I took engineering and enjoyed it so I could make Air Treck skates.
But that, my friends, is a dream for another day. /sheds a single tear, looking at the dawning horizon
Air Gear is a very fun and fantastic manga, especially with its excelling panel transitions with its roller skating movements. For the artist, they get a thumbs up from me.
However, did the Anime give the manga justice?
Not really. Maybe I am a bit prejudice when I type this, however the more time Simca was on the screen, the more I wanted to punch my television with her face on it. She had WAYY more screen time than she SHOULD HAVE. However, that was not the only reason. They didn't really go into depth with the whole idea of Air Treck. It's so much more than people roller blading and winning badges for kisses. It's like a whole other world. That's the way the manga portrays it at least, and that's what I love about it. It's not a simple sport or some competition for anyone. It's for those people with the talent to soar. Also, the manga art is so much better.
No, the anime did not give Air Gear its just rewards. Maybe I am a bit annoyed by the fact I saw Simca a lot more than I should have, but the matter of the fact is that the anime doesn't serve the manga at all. At moments, I asked myself "Did it happen this way?" It bothers me when things don't happen like they did the books (if I read it), however if the movie or the show put it in a creative way, then props to them. But I just felt the anime didn't serve the purpose of supporting the manga. AND I WANT MORE RINGO, NOT SIMCA. DIE IN A PIT OF FLAMES, SIMCA!!

Well, besides my rant, I hoped you enjoyed this Monday's MM!
See you next time!!

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Anime Review: Darker Than Black

Title: Darker Than Black
Original Artist: Okamura Tensai
Genre: Action, Drama, Mystery, Romance, Sci-fi, Supernatural, Thriller
Episodes: 25
Manga: Here
Where to Watch: Here & Also on Netflix with Instant Que

In Tokyo, an impenetrable field known as "Hell's Gate" appeared ten years ago. At the same time, psychics who wield paranormal powers at the cost of their conscience also emerged. Hei is one of the most powerful of these psychic agents, and along with his blind associate, Yin, works for one of the many rival agencies vying to unlock the mysteries of Hell's Gate.
Left to right: Huang, Yin,
Hei & Mao
Three words for Darker Than Black (DTB): Intricate and Dashing. Absolutely brilliant work of an anime adaption. DTB begins in Tokyo, Japan, with part of the city being quarantined, dubbing the area, Hell's Gate. Within Hell's Gate, individuals with special abilities called Contractors are born. However, with all these extraordinary abilities, a Contractor must pay a price, which is immediately displayed in episode one.
The audience is introduced to our main protagonist, Hei, under the alias of a student named Li (Lee) Shenshun, being a Contractor without a price. He is part of an underground group of Contractors and Dolls, AIs (Artificial Intelligence) that mimic the looks of humans, however possess unique abilities (ranging from observation through water, as displayed by Hei's partner, Yin), called the Syndicate. The Syndicate is mysterious from the get-go and has many objectives beyond getting information.
Left to right: Misaki, Mao, Hei, Yin, & Huang
Along with the Syndicate, the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department, led by Section-Chief, Misaki Kirihara, focus on Contractor-related cases that surface. By tracking every Contractor through stars, TMPD is able to track them. Eventually, Misaki and Hei (Under his alias) meet, and things begin to immediately take a turn for the worse. As Contractors go more rampant in the city and as phenomenon from Hell's Gate begin to spiral out of control, Hei and Misaki, attacking from multiple sides, must stop Hell's Gate from destroying Tokyo.

God, this story is so bloody brilliant! Everything about it, from the characters to the setting to the supernatural aspects, DTB is just fantastic. For days on end, I, for the life of me, could not separate myself from Netflix and DTB. I wanted to know what happened in every episode and so on, and I nearly stayed up twice til midnight to watch this show. It's so darn addictive. Kind of like cake, but not really; it's better.

Hei/Li Shenshun: Nicknamed, The Black Reaper, Hei, in the simplest terms, is a BAMF. Straight-up, hands-down. If I could be him, I probably would. In all aspects, Hei's character just blew my mind. AND THE ENDING, OH MY JESUS, /MIND = BLOWN. Okay, anyways, Hei is a very stoic character in his actual form, however as his alias, Li, he is a goofy, absent-minded, and incredibly stupid. (stupid = good... IT'S POSSIBLE!..) Hei is a Contractor with the ability to self-generate lightning through mediums (i.e. wire, which he uses often with his dagger) as well as eating a lot. (Total joke, but it's evident through the episodes that he eats a lot. And by a lot, I mean like... A pudgy person eating 7 3-tiered cakes with a lot of frosting) However, Hei does not have to pay a price for his abilities, which he is seen as 1 of 2 Contractors throughout the entire series without a price. He also has a BA mask. That gives him 100+ kick arse points.
Hei, with and without his mask
Yin: Yin is a "Doll" with the ability to use the medium of water to observe and listen on people or events. Yin is Hei's Doll partner and works with him as an out-of-combat communicator. Yin's character is very mysterious, however, even though she has no emotions, she has quite an unique past. I love Yin.
Huang: Hei's intelligence officer of the Syndicate. Huang works with Hei, giving him assignments as well as intel from the Syndicate. Huang, as well, has a very tragic past. I nearly cried watching his mini character arc. I began to understand him much more after finding out what had happened to him.
Mao: OMFG I LOVE MAO! He's a talking CAT!... Anyways, Mao is an ex-Contractor that has the ability to shift his "being" into the body of an animal. However, Mao had lost his human body and is now stuck in a black cat's body. He is also a Contractor without a price, since he had lost his human body. Mao is a very fun character to have around, as his personality and gestures compliment Hei's shelled exterior. 
Misaki Kirhara: Misaki is the Section-Chief of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department's Foreign Affairs, Section 4. She is a very strong-willed woman, who I really like. She's such a BA. If I couldn't be Hei, I'd be Misaki. She's very nice to have around, and I really wished that Hei and her had just DID IT! Oh my gosh... /shot.. Anyways, Misaki has a very sharp personality that is nearly close to Hei's original personality. When she is around Li, her personality contrasts with his. What's nice about Misaki's VP is the audience gets to see the two sides of the coin. We get to see the struggles of normal people, a.k.a. non-Contractors, as well as the intricacy of the Contractor's life as Hei and his team as well as the Contractors we see along the way.

Hei in his Black Reaper outfit
Art, Flow, Music, and Voice Acting:
Oh man, I love DTB's art. It's shounen at the same time it's not! Bloody genius! The details of the characters as well as the special effects for all the supernatural abilities is superb. The flow of the story moves at a steady pace, and we really get to see the action and characters as they are. From all the episodes, there isn't any stiff movement.
OKAY, WHOEVER CHOSE THIS MUSIC = FREAKING AMAZING. The opening music and the ending music of both seasons fits perfectly with the atmosphere of anime. We have this dark intricacy as well as this action-packed thriller sci-fi. Emotions and the characters are portrayed so well through the openings and endings.
Voice Acting. Yeah, voice acting.
Collage of Characters from DTB
OMFG I LOVE ALL THEIR VOICES. BEAUTIFUL! *throws confetti around in a jolly manner* Although I have only watched the English version of DTB, I love the English voice-acting! Not only does the voice acting fit the character's personalities and gestures, it really helps create the character being depicted. Bloody brilliant.

As you can probably see, I love this show. Mega 4/4 polishes. DTB has that softy macabre tastes that appeases me as well as the humorous and bright stuff. Nearly every character met in this entire show is colorful, brilliantly made, and creatively depicted. The setting and the atmosphere of the entire show is mastered and wrapped in a ribbon by the music, art, and voice acting. Overall, Darker Than Black has seriously created a masterpiece of a dark mystery sci-fi.

Inked with Brilliance and Love,

P.S. Hey everyone, a little side note if you have made it this far. I wanted to tell people that I am sorry I am always giving most of my reviews 4/4, and some might not agree with me on some of these ratings. However, I want people to know that I am always open to reviewing any manga or anime. Please comment below or fill in a request form. I really don't mind. Sorry and thanks again for reading!
You have read this article 2012 Reads / Anime / Manga / Sara's Reviews with the title March 2012. You can bookmark this page URL Thanks!

Manga Review: Kaito Shuno

Smackjeeves Banner
Title: Kaito Shuno
Artist: angelperez
Genre: Yaoi, Romance, Comedy, Drama, Thriller, Action
Chapters (So far): 53
Website: Begin Reading Here.... YOU BETTER CLICK IT OR I'LL CRY

Please note: This is a BL (Boy's Love) Manga. I (Sara) do not discriminate against sexuality, love relationships, or nearly everything else you could possibly discriminate against, except for Yuri/Shoujo-Ai because I don't like GirlXGirl. Anyhoo, if you are not comfortable with a BL Manga/comic, please do not disrespect the artist, the manga, or myself by leaving comments on either the artist's website or on BNR. If you are more open-minded and free of different relationships, then please keep reading. :D

Summary: A man named Kaito goes to commit suicide after living a boring, loveless, cubicle job. He meets a strange guy named Shuno...and Shuno immediately takes a liking to him...almost too fast to be real XD Kaito quickly makes it clear that he isnt gay...but will Shuno's actions toward him make him a little...'confused'? lol Kaito's been in such a need for love that maybe Shuno's affection doesnt look THAT bad...or does it?:P


Kaito.. I see what you did thar...
Three words: I love it. The story line, the plot twists, it's brilliant. BLOODY BRILLIANT!
So, basically, this story is about a "straight" guy, Kaito, who is struggling with life at the moment and in his past. While attempting suicide, a spectator, Shunoki (Shuno) watches him. And watches him. And watches him. Kaito, confused as to why this guy wouldn't stop him from committing suicide, is pissed off and one thing leads to another, and now they are living together! BAZAM! So this normal and average guy is thrust into this crazy story of love and needed drama.
Anyhoo, this story has got what any person needs: Love, drama, thrills, comedy, action, and boys. Two very cute boys who are the main characters! Buwahahahaha!! 
*cough*.. Anyways, onto characters!


Red Eyes = Shuno
Green/Blue Eyes = Kaito
Kaito: Kaito, you're just pretty freaking awesome. There is so much potential as a character for Kaito, and Angel excellently utilizes his personality, past, and gestures to convey his emotions and thoughts. He is a well-thought out character. There isn't this weird and immediate personality change from page 1 of chapter 1 to page 6 of chapter 9. (See what I did there...? Sorry kids, however an idea for Angel! ;D <- I'm a perv..) The readers get to watch Kaito grow into the person he truly and really is. Kaito is especially interesting when his inner Uke is showing. *3* (If you don't know what a Uke is, go read a Yaoi manga and Google it.)
Shuno *3*
Shuno: Words cannot describe how much I love Shuno. Seriously, my god. He's just... Simply put: Awesome xInfinity. Angel has done an amazing job with Shuno and developing his character. When we see what Shuno has gone through, the readers (at least I did) really understand why he is the way he is. He's just a lost kid. He's gotten love, however, it was always removed from him. I really feel for Shuno with his eccentricity as well as his sadness. And the comic relief from this guy!... ROFLMFAO! Seriously, hours of that from Shuno. He's just.. A boss.

Art & Panel: 

Firstly, I want to point out the art. The art may seem mainstream by all means. However, Angel kicks up the notch with her own interpretations and styles. The regular drawings are always improving, and Angel's chibis are too freaking cute and adorable to describe without gushing and vomiting rainbows. (Seriously though..) She flashes out colors for small sequences or to emphasize a point; many times a reader sees a color, it is usually for Kaito's and/or Shuno's eyes, which just make them pop out from the rest of the people in the comic. She also uses something I have never ever seen before: Coloring the entire page.
You probably don't really get what I mean, but look at this page below:

See what I mean by color? And look at
those cuties!!
Have you seen this before?
I sure haven't. But what's fantastic about this is the interchangeability to be able to convey when a place is at night, in the day, in light, or in the dark. In most Mangas or comics, you don't know. So if it becomes an anime adaption, you might not expect that scene to be in the day or in the night like you imagined (I've experienced that before). With this, Angel is able to convey that "this is taking place at night" or "there is light in this picture" without explicitly having to say the time like in some Mangas. Additionally, this technique also gives the reader a better picture of when this is happening. If the page is greyed out or isn't, this supports the context of the story, especially with gestures or dialogue. Like in the above picture, it kind of gives the impression that "Okay, so it's night. Why is this guy just sitting on a bench in the middle of the night?!" It kind of makes you curious as to who this guy is. I might try this technique (and epically fail at it) in my comic. It's pretty awesome to see new techniques that an upcoming artist can utilize and upgrade if they can find any upgrades.
Not only is Angel superb in creating an atmosphere from simply coloring the page, she is also fantastic at creating a build-up and a conclusion from page to page. Look at this page below:

(AH!)... LMFAO reference....

You want to keep reading because you want to know what's going to happen next. This is effectively used to create quick suspense and quick conclusion. It paces a nice and moderate speed, which doesn't force the reader try to keep up with the flood of information. Angel keeps it at a steady and chill pace, which 99.99% of readers appreciate, especially me.


So, I give Kaito Shuno a 4/4 polishes. The story is well thought out and paces very well in nearly all chapters. We see both the happy, sad, angry, and tragic sides of each protagonist, which, not only creates a relate-able relationship with the audience, but a sense of realism. We witness the struggles of individuals who have insecurities because of external influences, such as parents, friends, or the environment he/she grew up in. Angel has created realistic personalities in both characters, and we see the progression of individual and couple growth. That growth creates a connection with the audience and makes the audience feel what the character feels. The art exceeds expectations of an upcoming artist and utilizes techniques that some "pros" don't even use or hardly know. I am always looking forward to Angel's updates, and I hope to see more of Kaito and Shuno later on. Keep up the good work, and everyone, go support Angel and her awesome-tastic Manga. It is well deserved. :)

I'm leaving you with one of my favorite pages... Only because of Shuno... Yeahhhhh... Shuno is a boss... Just.. Panel 6... Is the shit... YER...

All art used in this review is from the Manga, Kaito Shuno. Drawn all by Angelperez.

Inked with Love and Brilliance,

You have read this article 2012 Reads / Anime / Manga / Sara's Reviews with the title March 2012. You can bookmark this page URL Thanks!