Anime Review By Le Chupacabra
Action / Mecha / Thriller
A surprise attack by the imperialistic Brittanian Empire culminates in the defeat of Japan and its rechristening into the derogatory “Area 11”. Years later, a haughty young boy belonging the prestigious Ashford Academy rushes to help the driver of an overturned truck and stumbles upon a shocking Britannian secret and a desperate plot to free the nation. Suddenly been granted a strange new power, Lelouch Lamperouge's past and future collide as he sets to become the master of his own fate...
The hype leading to this one must have been immense. I don't ever recall any episode at the preliminary showings at the IC Anime Society being treated to rapturous applause and fervent yelling as the intro began.
Then again, it was relatively well deserved.
Code Geass has to be given credit for melding the signature talents of studios Sunrise and CLAMP. Strong mecha elements and a baroque plotline are infused with distinctive characters and an air of relentless entertainment. Clearly, they had a winner on their hands.
Embodying one of its own core themes, the narrative starts off small. An interesting power begs to be explored and Lelouch sates your curiosity by running fascinating trials on his newfound ability. However, it isn't long before he grasps the potential of his Geass and revels in it as his plans spiral towards far consequential, epic proportions. Spoilers shall be avoided but let it be known the story juxtaposes the mundane with the grandiose quite well, creating an interesting divide that is present throughout in various forms.
The characters themselves require a bit of pondering. Lelouch is interesting; bringing forth a strong personality with just the minimum touch of softness so he doesn't seem to be overly sharp. His intelligence is what makes the set-pieces shine and while you could blame him for being a poor man's Light Yagami (Death-Note), he's all right. His best friend and rival, Suzaku, not so much. Yeah, let's get this straight: Suzaku is a git. Go on, try defending his “honourable motives” or “strength of character” but he's the finest git if I ever saw one. It's like the producers discovered the slang word “git” and thought they'd give it a body, face and name. Yup, that be Suzaku.
The voice acting is solid although Lelouch's deserves special mention. A bit melodramatic at times particularly when he uses his “Zero” voice it's still powerful and resonant, giving him depth and personality.
If you want to blame Code Geass for anything, it is that it's a smug bastard.
It's the kind of anime that waltzes into your home unannounced, demanding your undivided attention and then doesn't give a damn and settles down into your favourite seat at the dinner table anyway. There are even times when it feels like it simply tries too hard in various areas and the thing is: these moments are noticeable. Character interactions just seem to work in most anime but since everyone here wants to be noticed, their interrelations come across as somewhat forced and artificial, lessening your own interest in them every once in a while. Oh, and Suzaku is a git.
Let's get this straight: I enjoyed Code Geass. Yeah, it's a little hard to take seriously at times mainly because it's so darn Narcissistic. However, as the series' progresses it learns to love itself a little less and remember that there's an audience watching. At its best, Code Geass is intense, operatic and thoroughly entertaining. It's definitely worth finding out what all the hype is about. Plus, you don't want to be left out whilst everyone watches the second season now, do you?
By Shehtaz Huq
Of all the meaningless yet foot-tapping songs of the past decade you can think of, 'Mmmbop' by the Hansons ought to jump right out at you (and so should 'Macarena'. I bet all of you who grew up in the nineties danced the Macarena at one time of your life). But as is the fate shared by most celebrities of the twentieth century (remember Britney Spears?), that blond-haired, blue-eyed trio of brothers roller-skated their way into obscurity as the nineties ended. And then it was time for the Jonas Brothers.
The Jonas Brothers are the first three sons in a family of four boys from New Jersey. They are a teen pop group that has taken the world of teenage girls by storm (think Hannah Montana. Think High School Musical. Think Jonas Brothers). There's Kevin Jonas on the guitar and vocals; Joe Jonas on percussion, guitar, keyboard, and vocals; and fan favorite Nick Jonas on the piano and drums. The brothers have released two albums by far, It's About Time (2006) and Jonas Brothers (2007). A third album, A Little Bit Longer, will be released later this year.
The Jonas Brothers started with Nick singing his way into Broadway. Younger brother Joe Jonas soon followed. While on Broadway, Nick sang 'Joy to the World (A Christmas Prayer)' which became a Christmas carol classic on Christian radios. In 2004, an executive at Columbia Records discovered 'Joy to the World' and signed Nick Jonas on. He was supposed to release a solo album, but the dates kept being pushed back as the studios shuffled presidents.
Their self-titled second album, Jonas Brothers, was released on August 7, 2007. It reached number five on the Billboard Hot 200 chart in its first week.
The brothers say their writing reveals a lifetime of influenceseverything from My Chemical Romance to the Backstreet Boys to Weird Al Yankovic (with whom the band recently shared the stage at New Jersey's Bamboozle festival). Still, what you really hear on The Jonas Brothers is the sound of three young musicians finding their own voice their own distinctive blend of Nick's way with an R&B vocal, Joe's love of danceable beats and Kevin's obsession with guitar solos.
In August, the Jonas Brothers made several appearances on television. They guest-starred in an episode of the Disney Channel show Hannah Montana titled "Me and Mr. Jonas and Mr. Jonas and Mr. Jonas".
Because of their major success with Disney and Hollywood Records, Disney has signed the brothers to a movie (Camp Rock - premieres June 20, 2008), two Disney Channel Original Series', a 3D concert movie, and a behind-the-scenes book. Their Disney Channel Original Series, entitled J.O.N.A.S! (Junior Operatives Networking As Spies), stars the trio as a group of government hired spies. The show is expected to debut on Disney Channel in the fall of 2008.
The entertainment circuit was all abuzz about the Jonas Brothers not too long ago. The boys have recently started sporting 'virginity rings', as a promise to their parents and God that they'll 'stay pure till marriage'. Nick Jonas stated the rings are "just one of our ways of being different than everybody else out there." There was also some talk of a hook-up between fifteen-year-old Nick Jonas and Miley Cyrus, but the pop sensation duo maintain that they are 'just friends'.
There's more to the Jonas Brothers than good looks and smooth voices, though. Last year, the band raked in $12 million, ten percent of which they donated to Nick's charity, Change for the Children.
Processor: Pentium 3 1.0 GHz, or AMD equivalent.
Memory: 256 MB, or 512 MB for Vista.
Graphics Card: 128 MB with Shader model 2.0 capability.
Everybody loves lego, and everybody loves games. Also, almost everybody loves Indiana Jones.
Which makes Lego Indiana Jones (tm) quite an interesting package of entertainment. As the name of implies, this is an Indiana Jones made of Lego! Out from the doors of LucasArts, this game will not fail to remind you of their older game, Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga. Pretty much everything is left the same except the skins, no lightsabers, though.
The game follows the original storyline of the films Raiders of the Lost Ark, Temple of Doom and the Last Crusade. However, it's only based on those movies, and by no means is it an exact enactment, or rather an enplayment of the films. What do you expect? It's one game. The general feel of it has been toned down to make it suitable for everybody. However, that does not mean that it's fun factor can only be derived by kids. No, it's funny enough, utilizing excellent humour with use of props, and gestures and what not.
There's quite a numerous number of playable characters (allies) in the game. Approximately 60, actually. And each of them has a special or unique ability. While one of them is able to dig for treasures, other's are more than handy with the wrench, in more ways than one. Jones, of course, is equiped with a sturdy whip, with which you can hack, whap and whoosh at enemies, or use it to swing to an otherwise unreachable ledge.
It's mostly a straightforward puzzle, but they get slightly tougher as the game progresses. The most difficult of these puzzles is probably to notice the puzzle items on screen, which can sometimes be difficult what with all the foliage and Legos lying around.
The graphics aren't anything awe-inspring, as they use they same (modified) graphics engine used in Lego Star Wars. It's not exactly bad, but there's plenty of room for improvement, and it proves to be a letdown in this day and age. However, one must keep in mind that this is Lego Indiana Jones, and also you may want to direct your attention to the requirements for this game. For Star Wars fans, if you toil hard and long enough, you'll be met with a pleasant surprise, in the form of a certain character also played by the actor of a certain protagonist. There are other snippets of fun and homages to several LucasArt products, so keep your eyes and ears open.
This is not one of the best products that LucasArts has released, and one might say it's yet another exploitation of a famed name. The game leaves a bit to be desire, however as you delve into this wonderfully funny Lego world, you'll realize that it's all very good fun, and it has those LucasArts touches, here and there. Also, note that the game is developed by Traveller's Tales and only published by LucasArts.
There are some touches that makes the game funner to play, for example, the player can build a vehicle out of scratch from fallen Lego and ride it in order to further your missions. And who can forget the elephants, right? Also, let's not even go to the falling and rolling boulders. Co-operative play is available, on the same keyboard or multiplayer. If you own Nintendo DSs, you can do a co-op play with upto 8 characters, although, you're restricted to only two characters, on screen. Not owning a DS, I have no idea how that is supposed to work.
The sounds are a treat, which includes but are not limited to environmental ambiences, girly screams and primitive grunts, while the music is interesting and likable enough.
All in all, it's a game which is definitely worth your time, if you're looking for some light, funny and witty entertainment, rather than the dark, grim and witty entertainment available to you. It'll keep a little grin on your face through the whole thing, and is sure not to disappoint. Atleast, sure not to disappoint most people.
Put on your Fedora, crack your whip, and live through the dangerous adventures you know you'll never really have.
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it superman? Nope! It's a car. What would a car show be without a flying car? Frankly, we don't want to know, which is why we're glad the Meadow Brook Concours d'Elegance, taking place Sunday, August 3, is playing host to the Taylor Aerocar. Built in 1956, this is perhaps the most successful flying car of all time. That's right, despite our fascination with flying cars, the best one was probably built more than 50 years ago. If you're on hand at the Meadow Brook event on August 3rd you can see one up close.
But why is it so awesome? First, because it looks like a Fiat attached to the back of Cessna, yet still manages a cruising speed of 135 mph and a driving speed of 60 mph. Second, it's the only car to be approved both for flying and highway driving. Third, it's still flying today. Fourth, it's the inspiration for a future Aerocar that will probably never be produced.