Thursday, December 31, 2009

Review: New Moon (2009)

New Moon (2009) is the sequel to the first film, Twilight, based upon the very popular vampire-teen novel series by Stephanie Meyer. This review will reveal major spoilers about the movie’s plot. I saw this film in movie theatres in November 2009. I have finally come around to publish my thoughts.

In the beginning, Bella Swan dreams where she meets Edward Cullen, her vampire boyfriend, in the woods and perceives herself in the mirror as an old woman. Edward is immortal whereas she is human. Bella is finally 18 – officially an adult, but she has a growing distaste with growing older now that she realizes she’s technically older than Edward (he changed at age 17). Nevertheless, the Cullen family throws a birthday party for her. When she cuts her finger to unwrap a gift, Jasper Cullen becomes overwhelmed by the blood scent and attacks her. Edward realizes his family’s supernatural nature poses a threat to Bella’s life so he abruptly ends their romantic relationship. The Cullen family leaves Forks, Washington permanently, and Bella sadly does not know their new destination.

His departure leaves Bella psychologically heartbroken and suicidal for months. She would lock herself in her room in despair hoping that Edward would return someday. However, when her father, Charlie, insists that he wants her to live with her mother in Florida, she changed her behavior and resumed hanging out with her school friends. Her experiences and activities remind her of Edward who, as an apparition, warns her to stay away from danger. She seeks companionship with Jacob Black, who eases her pain and loss over Edward. When Jacob disappears for weeks and Bella searches for him, she discovers that he has joined a werewolf pack, a natural enemy of vampires. Worse, another former enemy has returned to kill Bella to avenge the murder of her mate. Jacob must hunt with the pack to patrol the area. Alone and sad, Bella continues to engage in risky behaviors to ease her sorrow.

When Bella finally discovers Edwards’ whereabouts, she races to Italy with Alice to stop Edward from committing suicide in the sunlight. In a series of miscommunication, Edwards believes Bella has died and feels he has no purpose in living anymore. Bella stops Edward just in time, but the Volturi, a powerful vampire coven, learns about Bella and believes she knows too much about their ways. She has two choices: death or become a vampire herself. Alice saves Edward and Bella with a premonition that Bella will transform in the near future. Back in Forks, Edward apologizes to Bella about his quick departure; he only left to protect her. The Cullens decide either Alice will change Bella after graduation or Edward will change her if she decides to marry him. Meanwhile, Jacob warns Edward about their treaty – the vampires and werewolves will not attack each other as long as the vampires do not bite a human.

The movie illustrated a few things: 1) growing tension between the Cullen family and werewolves, 2) Bella's fate as a vampire, and 3) preview of the Volturi. Jacob saw the most plot development as he transitions from an adolescent to a mature werewolf. Edward plays a more minor role (near the beginning and ending), so the film focuses more on the relationship between Bella and Jacob. There was not much action in this film, so it disappointed me. This was definitely made for the book fans who know what to expect (I have never read the books). I thought the film could had provided more drama and suspense. Some scenes seemed too rushed and unoriginal. Bella was too depressed and emotional for my taste. I wanted to tell her, "Don't do that because it's stupid!" However, I have to say the actress improved her acting; she played the part of a dysfunctional teenager very well. Victoria is also still on the loose, but I hope the next film will see her demise. I still recommend this film (3.5 out of 5 stars), but I think Twilight was the better movie.

Stay tuned for more updates about the third film (2010) in the Twilight Saga, Eclipse.

Review: Cold Streets (Vampire Files #10)

“Bullets will fly. Blood will flow. And it will become clear that the simple life of a club owner is not in the cards for a vampire with a thirst for justice.”

Cold Streets, by P.N. Elrod, is the tenth book in the Vampire Files series. It is January 1938, winter Chicago. Six months have passed since his disturbing encounter with the mob and the discovery of a murdered woman. Multiple events have delayed the grand opening of his new nightclub, Lady Crymsyn. He enjoys his life as a vampire. He’s one of the good guys with a heart for justice -— and blood. He aids his best friend and colleague, Charles Escott, British private agent, in investigating and solving difficult cases.

Jack returns to his club where we meet reoccurring characters: Bobbi Smythe, his girlfriend who has aspirations for Hollywood; Gordy Weems, major Chicago mob boss, owner of the Nightcrawler Club and one of Jack’s best friends; Adelle Taylor, multi-talented actress and now performer at Lady Crymsyn; and Myrna, from the previous novel, the club resident ghost, who warns Jack of trouble. Now, he meets two new people, who want to work at his place: Faustine Petrova, Russian ballerina dancer, and Roland Lambert, her American partner, from war-intensifying Europe. However, New York mob boss, Hog Bistrow, drunk and boorish, has some dangerous business to settle with Gordy. Why at the Lady Crymsyn? Growing tensions seem to be looming in the air.

The man behind the kidnapping of Sarah Gladwell has Jack fearing for his (undead) life. How can Dugan resist his hypnosis? Is the man insane or not even human? Dugan knows Jack’s supernatural abilities, and Fleming will do anything to prevent this guy from exposing the truth. If things can’t get any worse, Hog’s crew guns down mob boss, Gordy, and Jack must race against the clock to save his best friend. It seems that Jack not only has his club to run but also has one of the largest gang territories in Chicago under his guidance. From newspaper journalist, private detective, jazzy club owner and now mob boss? Let’s just hope Jack survives this unprecedented rapid change in his already busy (supernatural)lifestyle.

Cold Streets is the tenth installment to the Vampire Files series by P.N. Elrod. For newcomers, Jack Fleming became a vampire in 1936 in an unfortunate, merciless murder. How did he become a vampire? Even he doesn’t know but he has avenged his death. Since the first books—Bloodlist, Lifeblood and Bloodcircle—(I recommend reading these books and my reviews at the bottom of the page when possible), he has helped Charles Escott in several murder cases and later found enough cash to start his own business with the help of his closest friends. Along the series, Fleming discovers secrets unveiled to him in startling and upsetting ways. Cold Secrets continues the vivid imagery and action-packed excitement present in most Vampire Files novels.

Elrod includes historical tidbits and popular culture in this book to entertain and inform the readers about the 1930s. Fleming mentions Charles Lindbergh, the Lusitania ship (know your WWII history???), J. Edgar Hoover, and other insightful references to the time. Bobbi’s dress, with cartoon characters featuring Snow White, reminds the reader that ‘Snow White’ was one of the first Disney films in the 1930s. The most famous historical celebrity from this time mentioned is Al Capone of the 1920s and Prohibition era. He had, according to many mobs, left a legacy in Chicago with his bootlegging and how mobs were ran and operated. This story takes place just around World War Two, so Elrod is including more international affairs in her novels. I just wished Elrod didn't include so many new wonder if they're really important to digest.

While the character development is excellent throughout the novel, I’ve noticed how more sarcastic and unsure Jack Fleming has become. Maybe that was the accent/talk of his time (he can recognize Chicago and New York accents in a second. What is exactly a Chicago accent??). He is 37 years old in human years, although as a vampire, he looks much younger in his age. He almost has an episode with Bobbi by draining the life out of her. This reminded me of the fifth book, Fire in the Blood, when he almost kills a woman by taking too much blood. Near the end, the audience will witness Fleming’s greatest fear when his own life and those around him are in jeopardy. Elrod makes sure to make references from previous novels to create a continuous, upbeat narrative.

I have not read a novel so bloody, brutal and disturbing since the seventh novel, A Chill in the Blood. You see a different side of Jack--almost like a monster--in this story. The idea that a man knows Jack’s supernatural secret leaves more questions than answers: what will happen to Dugan? Will he try to kill Jack again? The ending is somewhat incomplete (I know, I had to keep re-reading paragraphs for I was in a state of shock. I didn't like the ending.) but leaves more excitement for the next book sequel in the Vampire files Series. Just like the character, Angela Paco, encompassed two books (Blood in the Water, A Chill in the Blood), I bet you that Dugan will be in the next book, but only this time, we hope Fleming will stay alive and complete his unfinished business.

Stay tuned for my next review on the eleventh novel in the Vampire Files series, Song in the Dark.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

'Supernatural,' 'Legend of the Seeker' Resume January 2010

The fifth season of Supernatural resumes Thursday, January 14, 2010.

The second season of Legend of the Seeker resumes Saturday, January 9, 2010.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Review: Le Chevalier D'Eon (2006-2007)

Le Chevalier D'Eon (2006-2007) is a Japanese historical anime that takes place in 18th century France. It is a supernatural twist to the tumultous events that lead up to the French Revolution. It contains scenes of blood, gore, and murder so it is not suitable for young audiences. It contains 24 episodes.

It is Paris (1742), and King Louis XV still ruled the kingdom. A casket floats along the Seine River with the word "Psalms" written in blood and contains a deceased woman's body. Her name was Lia de Beaumont, a loyal servant to the king. Her only twin brother, D'eon, loyal knight and spy for the king, determines to discover the truth behind her sudden and violent death. According to the Catholic Church, her soul cannot enter heaven and will continue to wander the earth unless she seeks vengeance.

Throughout his journey, D'Eon searches for her murderer. However, there are some strange movements throughout Europe. Three companions accompny him to help with his investigiation, including the disappearance of a number of French women. They encounter revolutionaries, supernatural forces (magic, warlocks, corpses), and betrayal. D'Eon never imagined that he would become the vessel for Lia's angry and restless soul.

This anime is loosely based upon the real French cross-dresser, Chevalier d'Eon, who was a French diplomat, spy, soldier and Freemason who lived the first half of his life as a man and the second half as a woman. He referred to himself as Lady Lia de Beaumont, and the anime uses actual historical events to develop the plot.

Overall, this is one of my favorite historical animations of all time. The original soundtrack is beautiful (enchanting classical instrumentals that takes you back into time), and the storyline is breathtaking and adventurous. The soul of Lia wants revenge, and she is a great fighter. I like how the author took a supernatural twist with this tense period. Eventually, the proletariat rebelled against the monarchy and aristocracy. I highly recommend this anime. It is now available in English dub version.


Owari no Mata Kotoba Ariki ~At the End, There Still were Words!~ (one of my favorite songs on the OST!)

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Music: Blackmore's Night - Ghost of a Rose

I am officially done with school finals, and can now focus on this blog! I have so many things to post in the next few days. Let me introduce you to one of my favorite songs:

Blackmore's Night is a Renaissance-inspired folk rock band led by Ritchie Blackmore (electric and acoustic guitar) and his wife, Candice Night (lyricist and lead vocals). Candice is multi-talented and has a beautiful voice. The band produces folk and Neo-Medieval music. They are very popular in Europe. It reminds me of the Middle Ages in Europe and has a lighthearted, adventurous melody. This song is from their album, Ghost of a Rose (2003). I highly recommend their music. Enjoy!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Video: "Once Upon a December" by Deana Carter

This is one of my favorite songs, "Once Upon a December", by Deana Carter. The song is from the Dreamsworks animation film album, Anastasia. It reminds me of a magical Europe. Winter has arrived, and there is snow on the ground. I thought this was the right time to show this video. I also posted the lyrics to this classic song. Enjoy!

Dancing bears,
Painted wings,
Things I almost remember,
And a song someone sings
Once upon a December.

Someone holds me safe and warm.
Horses prance through a silver storm.
Figures dancing gracefully
Across my memory...

(Instrumental interlude)

Someone holds me safe and warm.
Horses prance through a silver storm.
Figures dancing gracefully
Across my memory...

Far away, long ago,
Glowing dim as an ember,
Things my heart
Used to know,
Things it yearns to remember...

And a song
Someone sings
Once upon a December

Monday, November 30, 2009

Review: Karin the Blood-Giving Vampire (2005-2006)

Karin the Blood-Giving Vampire (2005-2006) is a Japanese teen vampire series based in contemporary Japan. It derives from the manga, Chibi Vampire, and the anime adaptation contains 24 episodes.

Karin Maaka is the eldest daughter of a family of blood-sucking vampires. She is not a normal vampire. She suffers from an odd condition: she does not feed on blood; she actually over-produces it! She must bite others to control her condition (nose-bleeds are the side effects). Unlike her family, she can attend school like a normal teenage girl in the daytime. However, her life changes forever when a new transfer student arrives at her school.

Kenta Usui is the new transfer kid who has big eyes and spiky hair. Unfortunately, Karin suffers nose-bleeds around his presence. She tries to avoid him but they share the same class and work schedule. Karin's older brother, Ren, wants to erase his memory but Anju, Karin's younger sister, stops him. The family decide Kenta can be Karin's ally during the daytime while they are asleep and vulnerable. As they become friends, they eventually fall in love with each other.

More obstacles lay in their way. Per the request of her uncle, Yuriya, a human-vampire hybrid, spies on her. She disapproves of the relationship because hybrids are sterile. Furthermore, someone kidnaps Karin when it is later revealed her strange condition can cure the sterility that plagues vampires at the cost of her life. Can Kenta rescue his love before it is too late?

Karin, the Blood-Giving Vampire is an amusing teen vampire drama that will please everyone. The animation may seem weird in the beginning, but it has its funny moments as the storyline progresses. The Maaka family is not evil; they care very much for Karin, and, to a lesser extent, Kenta. You can't help but think Karin is cute with her unusual condition and outspoken personality. I would say this show was one of the best teen vampire dramas. I highly recommend this series.

It is now licensed and available to buy and rent on DVD.

Opening Theme: "scarlet" by BRACE;d

Saturday, November 28, 2009

World's Largest Pyramid ~Mirador~ Discovered

This was reported last month on CNN. The world's largest pyramid in Latin America was discovered a by a team of archaeologists. Scientists are hypothesizing this could be the legendary lost ancient Mayan city of Mirador.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Vanished Ancient Persian Army Found in Desert

I am very sorry I have not posted in weeks. I have been extremely busy with schoolwork (I'm a graduate student now!). I found this MSNBC article which is a major monumental discovery. Archaeologists have recovered the grave site of an ancient Persian army that was destroyed in a powerful sandstorm nearly 2500 years ago. The area has 50,000 skeletal remains in Egypt.

The remains of a mighty Persian army said to have drowned in the sands of the western Egyptian desert 2,500 years ago might have been finally located, solving one of archaeology's biggest outstanding mysteries, according to Italian researchers.

Bronze weapons, a silver bracelet, an earring and hundreds of human bones found in the vast desolate wilderness of the Sahara desert have raised hopes of finally finding the lost army of Persian King Cambyses II. The 50,000 warriors were said to be buried by a cataclysmic sandstorm in 525 B.C.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Reminder: Legend of the Seeker Season 2 Premiers November 7/8

This is a reminder that the second season of Legend of the Seeker premieres November 7/8. Do not miss this! Check your local listings for channel and time. I added the trailer below:

Season 2 Trailer

(The Legend of the Seeker TV series is based on the critically-acclaimed Sword of Truth fantasy novel series by Terry Goodkind.)

Friday, October 30, 2009

Review: Blood Promise (Vampire Academy #4)

Now, with everything at stake—and worlds away from St. Vladimir's and her unguarded, vulnerable, and newly rebellious best friend—can Rose find the strength to destroy Dimitri? Or, will she sacrifice herself for a chance at eternal love?

Blood Promise, by Richelle Mead, is the fourth novel in the Vampire Academy series. Rose Hathaway travels to Russia to find and kill Dmitri, her lost love who has turned Strigoi. She leaves everything behind at St. Vladimir Academy, including her guardianship and friendship to Lissa Dragomir. She finds herself in situations that she would have never imagined -- hunting Strigoi for pertinent information, meeting mysterious characters who understand the Russian underground scene, encountering a dhampir commune in Siberia, meeting other dhampirs who share similar common occurrences with Strigois, and finally witnessing Dmitri up close and personal.

Before she can carry out her plan, she meets new people who she depends for assistance after she learns new clues on her journey. First, she must emotionally find the strength within herself to understand who she is and what is her purpose in life. Meanwhile, Lissa is exhibiting erratic behaviors and losing her mind slowly at St. Vladimir's Academy. Rose can only helplessly watch from afar. Can a new person take over her former friendship role, even if Lissa and Rose are both shadow-kissed? Does Rose have the courage to kill the man she still loves deeply within her heart? You can find out the answers in this thrilling novel by reading it today!

I simply have four words to say: I LOVE THIS BOOK.

I am so happy I finished this nicely thick novel. The hardcover book was almost 500 pages long, but the storyline flowed very well. Rose has flashbacks of her memories and times with Dmitri throughout the story. Although he is now a Strigoi, he still exhibits human-like characteristics and remembers her favorite treats. Strigoi are undead vampires who are evil and soulless (red eyes, pale skin, superhuman strength). Moroi are living vampires who suck blood to survive and have elemental magic. Throughout the novel, he consistently wants Rose to be his eternal partner. Rose has a challenging dilemma!

Most importantly, this is my favorite Vampire Academy novel because readers can see all the major characters develop and form their own personalities through self-actualization. The ending of Shadow-Kissed was depressing because Rose saw Dmitri disappear before her own eyes. This novel goes through many twists and adventures that sometimes I wanted to yell at Rose often because she was losing her concentration and sense of justice. She also finds herself in dangerous situations and unravels new mysteries around her past. The cliff-hanging ending has set the stage for another exciting adventure that leaves many readers hungry for more Rose + Dmitri! There is a high possibility there will be a positive ending in this series.

Stay tuned for the next novel in the Vampire Academy series, Spirit Bound

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

5th Vampire Academy Novel (Spirit Bound) Expected Release May 2010

The fifth novel, Spirit Bound, of the spectacular vampire teen fantasy series, Vampire Academy, has an expected release date of May 2010.

Here is a summary of the plot below:

Dimitri gave Rose the ultimate choice. But she chose wrong...

After a long and heartbreaking journey to Dimitri's birthplace in Siberia, Rose Hathaway has finally returned to St. Vladimir's-and to her best friend, Lissa. It is nearly graduation, and the girls can't wait for their real lives beyond the Academy's iron gates to begin. But Rose's heart still aches for Dimitri, and she knows he's out there, somewhere.

She failed to kill him when she had the chance. And now her worst fears are about to come true. Dimitri has tasted her blood, and now he is hunting her. And this time he won't rest until Rose joins him... forever.

In the meantime, enjoy the first four books (Vampire Academy, Frostbite, Shadow Kissed, and Blood Promise) by Richelle Mead. Stay tuned to New Moon and the third season of True Blood!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Music Video: "My Last Breath" by Evanesence

Amy Lee (yes, I know she has a new last name) of Evanescence produced this rare rock song, "My Last Breath." You can find this song on the Fallen (2003) album. Amy is an amazing singer and songwriter in this video.

Click on the link below for the lyrics.

Hold on to me, love
You know I can't stay long
All I wanted to say was
I love you and I'm not afraid, oh

Can you hear me?
Can you feel me in your arms?

Holding my last breath
Safe inside myself
Are all my thoughts of you
Sweet raptured light, it ends here tonight

I'll miss the winter
A world of fragile things
Look for me in the white forest
Hiding in a hollow tree
(Come and find me)

I know you hear me
I can taste it in your tears

Holding my last breath
Safe inside myself
Are all my thoughts of you
Sweet raptured light, it ends here tonight

Closing your eyes to disappear
You pray your dreams will leave you here
But still you wake and know the truth
No one's there

Say goodnight
Don't be afraid
Calling me, calling me
As you fade to black

Holding my last breath
(Say goodnight)
Safe inside myself
(Don't be afraid)
Are all my thoughts of you
(Calling me, calling me)
Sweet raptured light, it ends here tonight

Holding my last breath
Safe inside myself
Are all my thoughts of you
Sweet raptured light, it ends here tonight
Holding my last breath

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Review: Witch Heart (Elemental Witches #3)

With a strange and powerful type of elemental magick, Clare isn't destined to remain a demon's handmaiden. Yet this has been her fate since she was six, when her warlock mother brought her to Eudae. Now an adult, she's about to discover her true power -- and how far others are willing to go to take it away...

Witch Heart, by Anya Bast, is the third novel in the Elemental Witches series. It has been a year since Thomas escaped Eudae with the assistance of Claire, a human servant who has been living in Eudae since her childhood. She belongs to Rue, who is the leader of the Ytrayi race in Eudae. Over the years, he has treated Claire as an experiment by tampering with her earth magick. As a result, she can release bits of air, fire, and water magick. During an Atrika surprise attack, Rue forces the elium into Claire's chest against her will and shoves her into a portal to Earth. Unfortunately, two Atrika military warriors also follow her. Tevan, a lieutenant, and Kai, a captain, want to capture her because the elium is a very powerful weapon. They need the elium to finish their mission: destroy the Ytrayi race in Eudae.

When the Coven witches hear about Claire's whereabouts on Earth, they rush to the asylum hospital to rescue her. Adam and Theo take Claire as fast and far as they possibly could. These Atrika warriors have amazing superhuman and super-healing powers. Meanwhile, Adam finds Claire attractive in a non-conventional way. He finds her very erotic and has urges to seduce her. As their journey becomes more dangerous, Claire has become reacquainted with Earth traditions and wants to establish a life with Adam. Does she have the determination to always live on the run, or will she sacrifice herself so that no one can use her as a weapon?

The Elemental Witches series is geared toward an adult audience. The sexual imagery is very descriptive and not suitable for children. Some of the major returning characters return: Thomas, Isabelle, Jack, Mira, Adam, and Micah. Since the second novel, the Coven has been training hard to fight against their archnemesis, the Duskoff, and other daemons who enter the human world.

Readers will learn a few new items. It seems the aaemon (Coven witches) and daemons have a common ancestor. The Coven witches descend from the Ytrayi (leader) daemons, and the Duskoff witches descend from the Atrika (warrior) daemons. There are two other daemon classes (scholar and builder). Thomas and Isabelle are now married, and so are Jack and Mira. There is a surprise at the end when Claire learns her real identity.

I found this novel did not flow very well. There were certain sections that bored me, and other cast members had very minor roles. Readers will learn more about Adam's past. The storyline did not instantly gravitate to me like the previous two novels. The sexual details were also redundant. Yes, we know that Claire and Adam love each other, but they are trying to survive too! I believe it didn't mesh well because the enemies were daemons from another dimension (instead of the usual Duskoff warlocks). On the bright side, I think the ending hints a new twist -- highlighting what may happen in the next novel.

Overall, this novel disappointed me, but I was able to finish it. Stay tuned for the next novel in the Elemental Witches series, Witch Fury.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Music Video: "Show Me the Light" by Lunaspace

Unfortunately, not much is known about this band, Lunaspace, other than they have produced other popular hits such as "Where's the Party? (2006)" I believe the German eurodance label, Beatwerk Records, was their label company. If anyone has a link to their biography, I would definitely appreciate it. Nonetheless, this is a great song I highly recommend. Click on the link below for the lyrics.

Here are the lyrics below:

Calling the dreams of yesterday
In a world so far away
Show me that love is here to stay
Can we find another way
Please take me far away
To the world of yesterday

I'll wait for my dreams to come true
It's another point of view
Turn back time and you'll find
You are always on my mind
You'll be here
And I have no fear
The time is right
Just show me the light
you show me light (you show me light)

Maybe I'm too blind to see
There's no chance for you and me
But you're always in my heart
And I knew it from the start
Just come back to me and stay
We will find another way

I'll wait for my dreams to come true
It's another point of view
Turn back time and you'll find
You are always on my mind
You'll be here
And I have no fear
The time is right
Just show me the light

I'll wait for my dreams to come true
It's another point of view
Turn back time and you'll find
You are always on my mind

I'll wait for my dreams to come true
It's another point of view
Turn back time and you'll find
You are always on my mind
You'll be here
And I have no fear
The time is right
Just show me the light

Just show me the light (You show me the light)

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Cast of True Blood Thanks Loyal Fans

CNN posted a special video where the cast of True Blood thanks fans for another successful season. You can watch it below:

[Updated January 2019: The original CNN video was removed. Please watch a similar video featuring cast member, Stephen Moyer, below.]

 Stay tuned for season 3 of HBO's hit series, True Blood!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Review: Kannazaki no Miko (2004)

Kannazuki no Miko (~Destiny of the Shrine Maiden~) is a Japanese supernatural anime series about the reincarnations of the Solar and Lunar priestesses as they wage a cosmic battle against an evil god in contemporary Japan. It contains 12 episodes.

Himeko Kurusugawa and Chikane Himemiya are two high school teens attending a prestigious academy in Mahoroba, Japan. When an ancient evil awakens on their birthdays (in Japanese folklore, October means "godless month"), the girls are plunged into their destined roles: defending the world against the eight-headed Yamata no Orochi, an evil god who wishes to destroy the world of humanity and create its own realm.

The first Orochi ("follower of the evil god") who tries to kill to kill the priestess ("miko" in Japanese) is Soma Ogami, who is in love with Himeko. However, he rejects his fate and vows to defend her against the other seven Orochi. Each Orochi has a mecha with superhuman physical strength and endurance, and they eventually become totally evil as they progress in power. Those who resist the curse receive a painful punishment.

As the girls train for their roles as priestesses, the series takes a twist for the worse as the battle becomes more intense and complicated. Although the girls have a very close relationship, Chikane is hiding something important from Himeko. Can the girls defeat the Orochi together, or will the world forever live in darkness?

I had high expectations for this show because it is about two reincarnated girls who must save the world from evil destruction. I immediately thought of the series, Blue Seed, because it also contains Japanese mythology and the Yamata no Orochi character. The music (by artist KOTOKO) is also lively and upbeat with a trance background. I love watching shows where the girls have magical powers. More interestingly, they both love each other like yin and yang (two opposite personalities who become whole when combined). If you are not comfortable with yuri themes (lesbian scenes), you may want to ignore this show.

Unfortunately, the plot disappointed me. There was definitely a lot of fan service, but the storyline overall fell flat. The female protagonists even annoyed me because their character development was lackluster and stereotypical. There are several mecha scenes, so the primary audience is teens (boys and girls). The ending did surprise me with Chikane turning evil, but it did not save the show. The only thing I will take away from this show is the music (excellent tracks, but completely forgettable.)

You may buy or rent this show on Amazon.

  • Opening Theme: "Re-sublimity" by KOTOKO
  • Ending Theme: "Agony" by KOTOKO

"Re-sublimity" by KOTOKO

"Agony" by KOTOKO

Monday, September 21, 2009

Mysterious Lake Creature Found in Latin America

Forgive me for not posting much on my blog this month. I have returned to graduate school, and it is kicking my behind workload-wise. I have finally managed to get my assignments under control, so I will add some new posts later this week.

I found this article in the Sun UK magazine. [Updated January 2019: New York Post] Apparently, a group of teens in Latin America discover a lake creature on the beach. It terrifies the entire town:

TERRIFIED locals in a South American town are running scared after a strange creature they describe as "Gollum" crawled out of a lake and charged schoolkids.

The beast — which has "sparked fear and confusion" in the small town of Cerro Azul, Panama — was spotted on Saturday when four 14 to 16-year-olds were playing by the waterfront.

This is so weird. The link also includes photos and a video of the scene. It does look like a lake monster. But what is it exactly? =/

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Supernatural 5th Season Premiere September 10

A 5th season of the popular Supernatural series will premiere September 10 at 9:00pm Eastern Time on the CW Channel. Sam kills Lilith according to the prophecy, and the rise of Lucifer from hell is inevitable. This is the moment all fans have been waiting anxiously! Season 5 will be one wild adventure.

UPDATE: Wow, Vampire Dairies and Supernatural back-to-back on the CW Channel. Thursdays are officially my favorite nights.

If you still cannot remember season 4, check out the recap video below:

Sunday, August 23, 2009

New Movie: Cirque Du Freak - The Vampire's Assistant (2009)

There is a new horror/supernatural movie, Cirque Du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant (2009) that will premiere in cinemas on October 23. Just in time for Halloween. I have heard positive reviews about this film, which is based upon the popular children's book series, Cirque du Freak, by Darren Shan.
A young boy named Darren Shan meets a mysterious man at a freak show who turns out to be a Vampire. After a series of events Darren must leave his normal life and go on the road with the Cirque Du Freak and become a Vampire.

You can watch the trailer below:

Thursday, August 20, 2009

10th Sookie Stackhouse Novel May 2010; New Short Stories Book, A Touch of Dead

New York Times Best-selling author, Charlaine Harris, will have a new book (A Touch of Dead) of previously published Sookie Stackhouse stories available for purchase on October 6, 2009. You may also pre-order on also has an exclusive online True Blood essay and Sookie Stackhouse Q&A with the author on their website.

Updated February 2010: The tenth Southern Vampires novel will be available on May, 4 2010. The title is Dead in the Family.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Egyptian Bust Looks Like Michael Jackson

The Field Museum in Chicago has a 3000-year-old ancient Egyptian limestone bust that amazingly resembles the King of Pop, Michael Jackson, in his final days. It is most apparent with the eyes, lips, and broken nose. It went on public display in 1988. Michael Jackson also based his 1993 music video, "Remember the Time," in Ancient Egypt. It is quite eerie.
“I have no idea whether Jackson ever visited the museum,” a Field spokesperson said to the Sun-Times' Michael Sneed. “But the similarity between the limestone statue of a woman – which is about 3,000 years old --- and Jackson is astounding.”

Interestingly, Jackson cast himself as an interloper in ancient Egypt in his video for “Remember the Time,” so maybe he sensed some Egyptian roots.

Could Michael Jackson be the reincarnation of this ancient Egyptian?

UPDATE #1 (August 11, 2009): Sony Pictures will release a movie of the canceled "This Is It" Michael Jackson concert on October 30, 2009. You can also purchase the DVD by clicking here. "The world will see what our team was so fortunate to experience, which was the full commitment, passion and creativity that Michael put into the project," [director Kenny] Ortega said in a statement.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Review: Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne (1999-2000)

Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne (2000-2001) is a fantasy Japanese anime series about a high-school girl who is the reincarnation of Joan of Arc. It takes place in contemporary Japan. It contains 44 episodes. In English, the TV series is called "Divine Wind Thief Joan."

Marron Kusakabe seems normal because she enjoys gymnastics, but she can transform into the reincarnation of the heroine, Joan of Arc (Jeanne d'Arc in French). She battles against demons, who hide in treasured pieces of art and possess the souls of their victims. Unfortunately, once a demon is defeated, the art work itself disappears leaving the police bewildered and suspicious. The senior police detective's daughter, Miyako (who is also Marron's classmate), suspects Joan of Arc is an art thief ("kaitou").

Meanwhile, Marron and Miyako cannot help but fall in love with their new classmate, Chiaki. He knows Marron's true identity so he follows her closely in school which, much to her dismay, annoys her. However, he quickly falls in love with her once he realizes how much he cares for her. Marron is confused by Chiaki's advances because she doesn't understand what "love" is since her parents abandoned her years ago. A new rival, Sinbad, emerges and seals demons. Marron must race against the police and Sinbad so that she can defeat the Devil from wreaking havoc on earth.

This show follows the magical girl genre that was very popular and successful during the 1990s with the Sailor Moon metaseries. The primary audience is children and young adults with some comic elements, although the plot becomes very serious later in the series.

This show is very good: excellent plot, smooth character development, lots of action. I thought the ending could have been better. What makes Marron so pleasing to fans is that she has an ultimate goal: her own self-worth and self-determination. She was abandoned by her parents when she was young, and she's gradually learning to accept love and her destiny. She also discovers she's in the middle of a major war between Heaven and Hell, and she must have the emotional and physical courage to overcome it all.

I really believed Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne could have enjoyed the same international crossover success as Sailor Moon. However, the religious symbolism could have bought forth controversy among more conservative families. There are also many chess references throughout the series. It is so underrated that it's a shame because many female fans would love to watch this series on their local television screens.

If you enjoy shows such as Full Moon wo Sagashite, Blue Seed, Fushigi Yuugi, and Chrono Crusade, you will definitely enjoy Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne.

You can watch the opening scene of the show below:

Opening Theme #1: "Piece of Love" by Shazna
Opening Theme #2: "Dive into Shine" by Lastier

Ending Theme #1: "ハルカ… (Haruka...)" by Pierrot
Ending Theme #2: "Till The End" by Hibiki

Note: There is no official DVD release because it is still currently unlicensed in North America. The manga is currently available for purchase on

Monday, August 3, 2009

It's Official: True Blood (HBO) Gets 3rd Season!

It's official people! HBO's hit vampire television series, True Blood, will have a third season! This is fantastic news to all fans.

In a move that very few should be surprised by, HBO has renewed the hit vampire drama "True Blood" for a third season to air in 2010.

The current, second season, which will air its seventh episode this Sunday, has shown dramatic growth in terms of ratings - with new viewers tuning in for each new episode and bringing stellar ratings that HBO has not seen the likes of since "The Sopranos."

This news comes on the heels of Alan Ball's statement in an interview with Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello that he is already breaking stories for the third season and is aiming to get the first two episodes filmed before the end of the year.

"True Blood" is based on the Sookie Stackhouse Series by Charlaine Harris. The third season will likely draw its main storyline from the third book, Club Dead, and will likely hit the airwaves next summer.

Stay tune for more updates, including an official trailer, later in this post! I must say Season 2 has exceeded my expectations.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Tsubasa Chronicle "Ring Your Song" Video

It has been over two years since I have heard this song. This poem is so beautiful and sad that tears run down my face. This is "Ring Your Song" by Kajiura Yuki featuring Itou Eri. You can find this song on the Tsubasa Chronicle Future Soundscape IV soundtrack.

Tsubasa Chronicle is a fantasy series about a young boy (Syaoran) who travels with companions through dimensions to retrieve all the feathers that would save his dear princess' (Sakura) life. The stanza highlights Syaoran's long journey and Sakura's lost memories, which symbolizes a new future. No matter what challenges lies ahead, Syaoran is determined to protect her until the very end because he loves her. I found this music video, which perfectly illustrates the special love Syaoran and Sakura have for each other.

Now we've come so far from darkness
And we'll never be apart
So we leave for tomorrow
To start our lives again

Find me there my tiny feathers
Of my holy ancient days
You will calm all my sadness
And sing your song only for me

Find me there my tiny feathers
Of my holy ancient days
I will calm all your sadness
And sing my song only for you

For you

Monday, July 20, 2009

Music Video: "Rose Red" by Emilie Autumn

It has been a while since I posted new artists. I discovered Emilie Autumn through a friend, and her music is pretty amazing. She is well-known for her vibrant long pink and red hair color and flamboyant theatrics. Her music generally has a medieval and gothic rhythm with modern percussion. The name of this song is "Rose Red", a fast-beat mysterious melody based on a medieval fairytale. Her voice echoes throughout the song. The lyrics are posted in the video. This song is from her album, Enchant. Enjoy!