Plot: After an incident at her old school, a girl named Maria Kawai transfers into Totsuka High School. She has a sharp wit and an even sharper tongue, creating friction between her and her new classmates. Despite appearances, she sincerely wants to make friends. When some of her classmates hear her beautiful singing, they slowly get close to Maria... (An interesting twist on the boy/girl-meets-transfer-student formula. B+)
Objectionable Content: Profanity, sexual situations
Other: A bit of an unusual psychological story with a few good laughs.
Overall Score: B
Plot: While on the trail of his missing classmate, Sakurako, Ageha Yoshina receives a phone card from the mysterious Nemesis Q that takes him to a world called Psyren. In order to return to the real world, he must fight his way through the dangers of Psyren. Ageha and his friend, Hiryu, manage to return with Sakurako. Regardless, they and the other holders of the Psyren cards (AKA Psyren Drifters) will be summoned back until the number on their cards reach zero. The key to survival is PSI, and Sakurako and the woman who taught her help Ageha and Hiryu to hone their skills. But soon Ageha and crew make a startling discovery: the barren Psyren world is actually the Japan of the future! (A for innovation)
Objectionable Content: Blood (some disturbing images)
Other: Even though there are doses of brief humor, "Psyren" is not a light read. The premise is interesting but dark, and the skirmishes with the deadly Taboo are gritty enough to make your stomach turn. Not recommended for younger readers. (It seems like more and more is being allowed in Teen-rated manga.)
Overall Score: B+
Plot: A talented ballet dancer, Rin Ogata had a promising career ahead of her. But an injury stole her chance, and she never returned to the stage. Now in college, Rin stumbles across a club that specializes in motorcycle-like transforming vehicles called Ridebacks. When she tries to ride one, she finds that her balance and versatility in dancing make her a natural at it. But her skills gain the attention of two dangerous groups: one is the GGP, which has taken over the government; the other is the rebel group that uses Ridebacks to go against it. (A)
Art & Animation: Absolutely gorgeous (A+)
Voice Acting: Original Japanese-- A / Dub -- B+
Objectionable Content: Blood, profanity
Other: Beautifully executed and complex, but sometimes confusing, leaving some loose ends. This is another anime that left me with mixed feelings.
I have never read the manga version.
Overall Score: B+
Plot: The year is 1931. The world is embroiled in political turmoil, and the Imperial Japanese Army is stationed in mainland China. Team Sakurai, a group of super-powered agents, is dispatched to Shanghai to deal with political threats in secret. (A for interest)
Art & Animation: Great attention to detail; beautiful work (A+)
Voice Acting: Dub -- A-
Objectionable Content: Blood, profanity, suggestive themes
Other: Steeped in political intrigue and historical background, this is not a series you can just sit back and watch without wracking your brain. There's a lot going on and a constant flood of information coming at you, and if you don't catch it, you're lost. Sometimes it becomes too bogged-down, but there's rarely a dull moment between the action and the interactions of the Sakurai team members.
"Night Raid 1931" starts great, has some really good episodes and some that leave you scratching your head and wondering what you just watched -- an uneven quality of writing, I guess. So I left this series with mixed feelings.
Overall Score: B+
Plot: Yotsuba Koiwai is an energetic five-year-old who lives with her adoptive father. Together with her neighbors and friends, Yotsuba has many adventures (and misadventures) as she explores and makes new discoveries. (B)
Characters: Cute and quirky (A-)
Objectionable Content: Occasional profanity
Other: A hilarious, clean comedy series! Definitely recommended to anyone. ^^
Overall Score: A-