Anifile - Madoka Magica

To round off the Winter 2011 lineup, Masako has the review that so many of you have requested for. So here are his first impressions on the magical girl show which turns the very concept on its head! It's Puella Magi Madoka Magica.


More like a peck on the cheek...

So I just got back from 2 job interviews today and I had some time in Covent Garden between said sessions. Now I would usually go to Muffinski's for my froyo fix, but I thought I would give the place I had been shunning for ages a try and see whether it justified my reluctance. The place in question is SNOG.

For those unfamiliar, SNOG is the most successful brand on frozen yogurt chains in the UK with 5 permanent 'Snog Shops' set in the London area and an outlet in Dubai of all places! So the reason why I have been quite scathing of this place is due to its ingredient it lauds as healthy - agave nectar. Agave nectar is a plant-derived ingredient used as an alternative to sugar sorta like honey. However, it may have a low-glycemic index but its fructose content is astronomical meaning that your liver can't process most of the calories from it and converts it to fat plus failing to satiate your appetite. When I discovered this, I avoided these like the plague. However, I thought I couldn't keep ignoring this place and would add these to my froyo reviews.

The decor is certainly very...pink; and white. It's quite a simple design and yet quite chic. I certainly didn't feel like my eyes were being insulted. I took to looking at the menu and was asked quite a few times by the server about whether I was gonna order something. I felt a little rushed like I was annoying her - but of course, she didn't blatantly say that. That's unprofessional.

The flavour of yogurt is quite varied with three constants: Natural, Green Tea and Blueberry with the addition of seasonal flavours (in this case, Spiced Apple). The sizes come in Little (125 cal), Classic (187 cal), Big (312 cal) or Massive (561cal). I like that last one - only social etiquette kept me from getting that one! The prices are not that bad - they start at £2.95 for a Little with nothing on it and go all the way to £9.90 for a Massive with 3 toppings. I went for a Big Blueberry at £4.30.

When I looked at this, I was eagerly ready to dig in. This is my control flavour with the topping blended in - how could I lose? Well...it's not all that rosy. The initial taste is very good. It is quite creamy with a slightly coarse note to it which is almost perfect for me - it feels like it has substance which differs it from ice cream. The flavour is tart and tangy but not as in your face like Frae or Itsu, much less the latter. So for the first few seconds I was pleased; however that didn't last. After a few seconds, the flavour vanishes as does the texture. It's like it never happened. So you dig in for some more...and more...and more. It's about now that I experience the agave nectar's fructose foe enacting its wrath. Making me want to eat more and feel unsatiated. I polished it off (this is like 12oz of froyo here!) and felt I could go for another if money allowed it but I thought better of it.

It was nice to try it again as I was a fan of the franchise to begin with before I found its dark secret they don't like to tell you. Granted, I didn't get a sugar rush and energy crash (the low-GI claim holds true in that regard) but a good dessert should make you feel content and pleased for a good while afterwards. This didn't. Its initial hit is good, but it's fleeting. I would much rather go back to Muffinski's and pocket the change. Conclusion - don't be fooled by the health claims of SNOG's agave nectar and go for a more straightforward variety.


Spring 2011 Anifile List

After some careful pondering, I have come up with the main 6 shows I'll be reviewing. I've listened to your requests and have come up with a list that reflects what you guys want to see and what I want to review personally so a nice mix of the two:

4/25: X-Men
5/2: Ao No Exorcist
5/9: Steins;Gate
5/16: Toriko
5/23: Denpa Onna to Seishun Otoko
5/30: Hanasaku Iroha

If I have time, I will also do two reviews with these tentative dates:

6/6: Lotte no Omocha OR Hen Zemi [I got requests for both of these -_-]
6/13: C - The Money of Soul

However, before all this I will be showing throughout the whole of April the works of Kia Asamiya in the aptly named KIA ASAMIYA MONTH! The dates for these videos will be as follows:

4/3: Introduction to Kia Asamiya
4/9: Steam Detectives
4/16: Silent Mobius
4/23: Martian Successor Nadesico
4/30: Asamiya's Other Work

Finally, after 23 episodes I am reluctantly saying farewell to my titlecard artist AngelBless. Due to real life commitments, her final titlecard will be for my Puella Magi Madoka Magica review next week. I thank her so much for her efforts since the show's debut. Hopefully we'll be working on projects in the future. :)

But with a goodbye, we have a hello! I welcome GuidingChaos as my new titlecard artist. Her first card will be for the Introduction to Kia Asamiya Month. So Anifile is going from strength to strength and I thank you all for the support you've given me up to now and hope to continue giving in the shows to come. Catch ya later!


Anifile - FREEZING

Mankind's only hope for survivial against aliens are steroid-ridden hot girls with weedy guys as sidekicks. Freezing thrusts its ample chest into the fray for all to see.


Anifile - Spring Review Recommendations

Spring is about to makes its entrance into 2011 [FINALLY!] and I'm about to plot out my main 6 reviews for the season of anime that is about to hit our screens. At the end of the previous season of Anifile I got tons of requests for shows which made the cut [just] for the winter lineup. I like listening to your feedback and so I thought I would ask you all for your recommendations for shows you would like me to review. I already have some shows that I will aim to review such as:

  • X-Men [I've reviewed Iron Man and Wolverine already from the Marvel/Madhouse posse so why not?]
  • Moshidora [This series has had a lot of praise from publications such as The Economist]
  • Steins;Gate [A microwave time machine?! Yes please!]
  • Toriko [A chef who travels around the world for the best ingredients and recipes - that's a new one for me!]

I am intending to review 6 shows, especially since the show selection this season is pretty generic. Tons of slice of life shows, a worrying amount of sexually-driven series and of course the usual merch-driven franchises. Maybes for me are:

  • Hanasaku Iroha [A young teen moves out to a hot spring and starts life anew. Little safe, but the animation is gorgeous.]
  • Appleseed XIII [I'm a sucker for Shirow - any revival of a show of this ilk is something I wanna get behind.]

And of course I wanna review at least 1 anime that is horrible. Well, I say wanna. I feel I should review one.

So yeah - feel free to suggest a show! If you want a full rundown, here's a very spiffy list from the guys at Chart Driver.


Anifile - Raiders of Galaxy

After so many shoddy anime-esque Korean knockoffs, Josephi Lai and friends...decided to do more. Witness more hilariously bad 'action' in the even more obscure 'Raiders of Galaxy'. Doesn't he know how to use the word 'the'?