WELCOME to the personal home page/blog of Matthew La France. Please enjoy your stay.


I've been watching some really cool anime recently. I'm really enjoying Kurenai, an Aishiteruze Baby style comedy/drama. A young girl raised as some type of royalty is taken from her somewhat cruel but privileged life and placed in the care of a teenage boy; a kind and hardworking orphan who possesses knowledge of some martial art and a strange, possibly indestructible body. There is action and drama, but it's played mostly for comedy so far. The comic perspective of the young girl who has never been outside the confines of her estate creates many comic moments. Combined with a school love-triangle completely imperceived by the main character, and his meddlesome but good hearted female neighbors there is a lot of room for comedy. There is also dramatic potential that will no doubt be explored later on. I'm unsure of whether I'll enjoy the show if it shifts from it's comic format but I'm looking forward to seeing more of it anyway.

I'm also enjoying some other comedies. Kanokon has to be the most risque comedy I've seen in a while. It's shaping up like a typical harem comedy, but pushed to the limits in terms of outright sexual but non-pornographic content. There are some other jokes to be had as well. I can't stop chuckling over the inclusion of two girls, possibly identical twins, engaged in a series of poverty cliches such as eating bread crusts for lunch or making artificial flowers.

I've also had a little fun with a show called To-love-ru. "Toraburu" a Japanese transliteration of "trouble", also contains "l/rabu" a transliteration of "love" which is highlighted in the title. It has basically the exact same premise as Urusei Yatsura, only the main character is a lot more noble, maintaining his feelings for his shinobu-esque crush while mostly being a nice guy to his accidental alien fiancee.

I also saw the first episode or two of Kamen-no-Maid-Guy, which is basically exactly what you'd expect if you try to imagine what a show called "Masked Maid Man" is about. A psycho buffed-up male maid takes care of and protects a wealthy high school girl. I'm still getting over the premise which is funny enough to sustain the series for at least a few episodes on it's own.

I've also begun XXXholic (nothing to do with porn), another quality series by CLAMP who seems to keep getting better. They do have a tendency to fumble series towards the end, usually degenerating into repetition, melodrama, or just plain mediocrity, but they have great ideas to start with and they just seem to be getting better as time goes by. This series is about a boy with paranormal sight who is taken in as a part time worker by a mysterious woman who is supposedly capable of granting wishes. It's proving to be entertaining.

As if that wasn't enough, I've been getting into two Japanese dramas, Akihabara@deep (I'm finally watching it Steve!) and Sumire 16 sai!! (Sumire age 16!!). The former is an amusing fictional tale of a group of socially misfit otaku wasting away in Akihabara who are introduced to each other by a woman on an internet chat room. These dysfunctional recluse' begin to find reasons to take action and become friends as the series progresses. Sumire 16 sai! is an adaption from a manga which I mentioned in a previous post. The drama is a little creepy and just plain weird so far. I'd like to see where it goes. I'd also like to see it subtitled. :P


I have an announcement to make. Some folks may already know David Shadoff and I have been working on a translation patch for Maison Ikkoku on the PCE and thanks to David's prompting, it's been publicly released with much success. I've gotten some good responses about it and someone has completed the game which is doubly impressive considering it's only been out for about a week. I've updated all of my project pages, but specifically I've put a translated manual in PDF format, as well as hints & cheats, and translation notes. You can check out the project page for these as well as a link to download the patch.

In other news, Perfume's new album "GAME" was released yesterday. I've gotten a chance to check it out. First impression, there is some filler unfortunately. I'm a little disappointed in that. "Take me take me" in particular is pretty low quality. There are some really good songs though. Highlights are definitely "Plastic Smile", and "Ceramic Girl". I'm interested to see PVs for these songs if they appear. There is a video on youtube of Ceramic Girl that seems to be the ending theme to a TV drama based on the manga "Sumire 16 sai!!" (Sumire Age 16). It's supposedly about a 16 year old girl who turns out to be a life-sized marionette controlled by an man in black clothes. 0_0

In further geekdom, I recently wept tears of pure joy at the first episode of Macross Frontier (short review on page). I'll have to go back and watch the first episode of Macross again to catch specifics, but it was basically a big tribute to the first Macross. A very familiar feeling, complete with cute Chinese restaurant waitresses and hotshot civilians mistakenly ending up in the cockpits of planes they shouldn't, saving girls in the clutches of a Valkyrie. That said, it doesn't feel like a simple rehash, but a full update of the series and a continuation of the chronology. It has good music, fan service, likable characters, dramatic action, and it's just gorgeous for a TV series. I have to admit, as much as I love the Macross tv series and Do You Remember Love? I haven't seen Macross 7, mostly because I heard it was crap. Frontier however I will be watching, I guarantee you.


I've been playing some Dead or Alive Xtreme 2 recently. I've finished up getting all of Tina's outfits for herself and I've moved on to Lei-Fang. That makes 6 out of 9 girls that I have all of their own outfits for. That doesn't include the other girls outfits which I haven't even started on. I still think this game was designed for closet-lesbian, gaming house-wives (such a neglected demographic). I don't understand how anyone has the time to get 1000GP in this game, but here I am chipping away at it anyway. I'm considering getting the Hori Turbo Ex controller for the 360 to see if it makes it easier to get through the beach flags.

I've been listening to a lot of MEG. It took a while to grow on me but now I really like it. Her new stuff is produced by Perfume producer Nakata Yasutaka. Speaking of which, Perfume has a new album called "GAME" coming out on April 16th. This will be there first album with previously unreleased material. Looks like there will be 7 new songs; plastic smile, GAME, "Ceramic Girl", Take me Take me, "Secret Secret", Butterfly and Puppy love. I can't wait to hear the new songs!


I haven't posted in a while. I've been watching a lot of stuff. I am caught up on Lost minus tonight's episode if there is one. I watched all of Heroes. I really like where Lost is going right now. It still hasn't explained a whole lot, but it hasn't betrayed my expectations, it's still really good. Heroes is quite good too. Somehow I can't help comparing the two shows. Heroes just isn't as multi-dimensional as Lost. It's good, but it feels like the characters aren't as well fleshed out, sometimes it would be nice to learn more about them, the Haitian for instance, or what it was like for their parents in their time more. It's a good show too though.

I finally watched the Saikano live action movie, pretty disappointing. It started off well, I thought it was doing a good job of condensing the series down, but then it started to drag and meander and I kept thinking there was a lot of other stuff in the anime. I had to go back and watch the last episode of the anime just to see if it was at all the same, which it wasn't. The character of Chise in the anime felt much more developed and more motivated than the one we were left with in the live action. While it held a lot of visual similarities, I think there was a lot of room for more development of characters. And there was a lot less sex in the live action movie, not that it was really shown in the anime, but it added drama to the story that was only vaguely implied in the movie. Not a total waste of time, but the anime is much better.

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