FMP: TSR ep. 1 airs, Jigoku Shoujo and BotS III teasers online, TOKKO anime announced, Vanilla anime library available for (paid) download, Comiket and figure news, etc.

The first episode of Full Metal Panic! The Second Raid aired last night on WOWOW, an appropriately named network to host what at its outset appears to be a very fine piece of animation indeed. Kyoto pulled out all the stops to make this episode really shine, and shine it does – even if you detest the franchise as some inexplicably do this is worth watching for the gorgeous visuals alone. Plot-wise there’s not much to say; the conflict in the episode is self-contained and seems designed to serve as a backdrop for a reintroduction of the main cast and to strike the more ominous tone we’ve been told the series is going to take (relative to Fumoffu, at least). There is disappointingly little Chidori in this first installment but it seems us fans will be paid back in full next episode, which based on the preview is set to launch the series’ plot in earnest.

Kamichu! ep. 3 was a bit of a letdown in terms of both animation and pacing. They unleashed the animator’s B team on the characters with inconsistent and sometimes laughably hideous results; story-wise the episode was bogged down toward the end with a protracted dialogue between Yurie and her cat-turned-god-of-poverty that, coinciding with the worst moments of animation in the episode, left a bit of a sour taste in the mouth as things wrapped up. The preview for 4 hints that they may have reverted back to the solid quality of the first two episodes; here’s hoping.

Comiket Side

Anime Side

  • The official Jigoku Shoujo page has a teaser trailer online (click the link next to “Windows Media Player”) as well as a list of the networks it will be airing on come this fall (Animax, Kid’s Station, Tokyo MX TV).
  • Its first episode is slated for an August 26th DVD release, but you can catch a 15-second glimpse of the Banner of the Stars III OVA at Bandai’s Digital Beat.
  • Fujisawa Tohru’s TOKKO manga is slated to become an anime next year.

Ero Side

Figure Side

  • Toranoana has some higher-res closeups online of the Keroro Gunsou Aki and Natsumi PVCs coming out from Megahouse at the end of September, and they do not disappoint.
  • The Iroppoi Figure Blog reports that the Shigure Megahouse Sunday Heroine PVC kit has been pushed back to an early August release. Yamato also notes that its Mizuho (wedding dress version) and Onegai Twins Karen and Miina PVCs have been pushed back to September, October and October respectively.
  • Here is a yotsuba thread with (small) images from a few of the upcoming SEED Destiny figure releases.
  • The end of July will see the release from Orchid Seed of Mai Hime’s Tokiha Mai in this somewhat uninspired resin kit.

Shichinin no Online Gamers Release Countdown: 8 days

七人のオンラインゲーマーズ~オフライン~

The summer 2005 season premieres wrap up tomorrow with Ichigo Mamiko. Tanoshimi~