Anime/Manga Summary - Mania.com



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Mania Review: The Penguins of Madagascar (November 26, 2014) by Rob Vaux
 The Madagascar series has a way of surprising me, even when it doesn’t have the purest motivations in mind. They’ve always been corporate product at their core, and the persistence of that quartet of paranoid penguins speaks to a studio ...

Star Wars Rebels: Gathering Forces Review (November 24, 2014) by Robert T. Trate
SPOILERS We pick up, literally, where we left off in “Empire Day”. The Inquisitor (Jason Issacs) and a squadron of TIE Fighters are in pursuit of the Ghost. Why? Kanan (Freddie Prinze Jr.) and his band of Rebels are trying to get Tseebo (...

The Wind Rises Blu-ray Review (November 19, 2014) by Kimberly McCall
*Minor Spoilers* “The wind is rising! We must try to live.” - Paul Valery I've seen the animated films of Hayao Miyazaki become pop culture staples over the last 15 years or so, since the release of English versions. Honestly, t...

Star Wars Rebels: Empire Day Review (November 18, 2014) by Robert T. Trate
Ezra (Taylor Gray) is continuing with his Jedi training. However, today he is distracted, for today is “Empire Day”. As one can easily guess, in this episode of Star Wars Rebels, “Empire Day” is the day celebrated by the Galactic E...

The Clone Wars - The Lost Missions Q&A: Darth Bane (November 13, 2014) by Robert T. Trate
Easter Eggs are always great to find. Now that we can own the final episodes of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, we can really examine every little detail. One that we missed, but reported on its possibility back in July of 2012 (seen here), was Mark Hamill app...

Mania Review: Big Hero 6 (November 07, 2014) by Rob Vaux
 Someone wiser than me once noted that superheroes define this era in moviemaking the same way gangster films did in the 1930s and musicals did in the 1950s. Walt Disney already owns the biggest superhero franchise in the world right now, and it&rsqu...

Halloween Special Feature: Mad Monster Party (October 23, 2014) by Rob Vaux
 Most people associate Rankin-Bass animation with the holiday season, thanks to their Rudolph and Frosty TV specials. But they didn't limit their efforts to Christmas. Mad Monster Party, a feature-length homage to all things that go bump in the night...

Star Wars Rebels: Fighter Flight Review (October 21, 2014) by Robert T. Trate
We had a bit of fun this week on Star Wars Rebels as Ezra (Taylor Gray) and Zeb (Steven Blum)  get into hot water with Hera (Vanessa Marshall). After a petty squabble of who saved who’s life, Hera sends these two out to pick up some supplies. S...

Mania Review: The Book of Life (October 18, 2014) by Rob Vaux
 Guillermo Del Toro has always been more than a purveyor of horror films, which is why his name always elicits attention. The Book of Life has his stamp all over it, even though he basically just angeled the project for co-writer and director Jorge G...

Star Wars Rebels: Droids in Distress Review (October 15, 2014) by Robert T. Trate
Disney XD and Lucasfilm have wasted no time in getting the crew of the Ghost into trouble. In being wanted criminals, I have a feeling trouble will probably find them every week. In what immediately reminded me of late great TV series Firefly, Kanan (Fred...

Star Wars Rebels: Spark of the Rebellion Review (October 03, 2014) by Robert T. Trate
A new era of Star Wars is upon us. The prequels and Star Wars: The Clone Wars opened the door for a new frontier of storytelling. A door that let us see what happened before Luke, Leia, and Han saved the galaxy. Yet, in this age when so much has been insp...

The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad/Fun and Fancy Free Review (September 02, 2014) by Tim Janson
While billed as a “2 Movie Collection” on the cover this blu-ray release it actually features five Disney films although they are mid-length features instead of full length features.  Disney would take two of these mid-length features, wh...

Toy Story of Terror Bu-ray Review (August 18, 2014) by Robert T. Trate
Last October I made a special effort to catch Pixar and Disney’s Toy Story of Terror TV Special. There are certainly not many new holiday TV specials anymore, let alone any good ones. With Pixar’s name attached, it should warrant everyone&rsqu...

Batman: Assault on Arkham Blu-ray Review (August 12, 2014) by Robert T. Trate
Warner Brothers’ Batman: Assault on Arkham is the first original animated film based on the popular Batman Arkham Video Game Series. This particular story takes place between Batman: Arkham Origins and Batman: Arkham Asylum. Our story lands us with ...

Mania Review: Planes: Fire and Rescue (July 18, 2014) by Rob Vaux
“Disposable” never applied more aptly to a movie than it does to Planes: Fire and Rescue. Believe it or not, that’s actually a big step up from the first Planes, which wore its cheapness like a badge of honor. This one doesn’t actu...

The LEGO Movie Blu-ray Review (June 23, 2014) by Tim Janson
I’ve been a fan of the various LEGO video games over the years particularly the recent ones which utilize the actual character voices from the films.  The LEGO movie plays quite similar to the games in that you have a lot of silly, irreverent f...

Mania Review: How to Train Your Dragon 2 (June 13, 2014) by Rob Vaux
 Grown-ups. The secret is making them grown-ups.It’s a rather amazing concept, though Toy Story 2 and 3 did the same thing on a slightly subtler scale. Age your animated characters from childhood to adulthood, and let the drama write itself. Th...

Son of Batman: Blu-Ray Review (May 10, 2014) by Tim Janson
I am firmly in the camp that the whole premise of Batman having a son was a bad idea.  That said, Son of Batman is a moderately entertaining film and certainly better than the last original DC animated film, Justice League: War.  The film is an ...

Mania Review: Rio 2 (April 10, 2014) by Rob Vaux
 Did you know that the original Rio grossed over $500 million? Neither did I. I mention that because it’s the only really memorable thing about the first film and the only possible justification for a second. The original movie was slight, but ...

Avengers Confidential: Black Widow and The Punisher Blu-Ray Review (March 25, 2014) by Tim Janson
While Marvel has enjoyed tremendous success with their big screen theatrical films, they have lagged in recent years when it comes to animated features.  Marvel had partnered with Lionsgate to produce eight, direct-to-video films from 2006 – 20...

Star Wars: The Clone Wars - The Lost Missions Review Part 2 (March 18, 2014) by Robert T. Trate
Last week Mania brought a review of the first 6 episodes of Star Wars: The Clone Wars - The Lost Missions (read them here). We left off with a cliff hanger to the Clovis story arc. So now we are back! “The Rise of Clovis” bought a lot of ...

Star Wars: The Clone Wars - Lost Missions Review Part 1 (March 12, 2014) by Robert T. Trate
Star Wars: The Clone Wars - The Lost Missions have arrived. Now the choice, for some, is to watch them one at a time. This way, they can be savored and enjoyed. The other option is to binge watch them all at once, thus getting answers to all those questio...

Mania Review: Mr. Peabody and Sherman (March 10, 2014) by Rob Vaux
 Mr. Peabody and Sherman arrives as huge surprise: looking for all the world like another cynical studio rehash and ending up as… well, as a cynical studio rehash, but one that abounds with real affection for its subject. The time-traveling do...

Justice League: War Blu-ray Review (March 01, 2014) by Tim Janson
At one point during Justice League: War, Green Lantern turns to Batman and calls him a “phenomenal douchebag”.  Welcome to DC Comics’ New 52 Universe where Green Lantern is an arrogant A-hole, Shazam is an obnoxious teenager, Superm...

Mania Review: The Wind Rises (February 21, 2014) by Rob Vaux
 (Disclosure alert: I saw this film with subtitles, so I can’t comment on the quality of the English dubbing.)I’m a few days from my screening of The Wind Rises and I still don’t know what to think of it. It doesn’t quite rank...