meta: Critical ThinkingSee in alphabetical order
Characters Of Distinction: Motoko Kusanagi July 19, 2017
How the feminist, post-humanist, and deeply human heart of the 'Ghost In The Shell' franchise became, and remains, an icon and a model
The (Dis)Illusion Of Life July 5, 2017
How CGI in anime, whether fancifully fantastic or forensically realistic, can work well
How The Future (Of Western Live-Action Anime Adaptations) Can Be Female June 28, 2017
'Ghost In The Shell' fizzled, but there are tons of other worthwhile anime/manga titles with strong female leads that could be adapted excellently for English-speaking audiences
Katushiro Ōtomo Won't Look Back, Can't Look Back June 1, 2017
The creator of 'AKIRA' is more interested in other things now. Good for him -- and most any creator ought to know what that feels like from the inside
Little Miracles, Done Dirt Cheap May 8, 2017
Hollywood doesn't need blockbuster-sized live-action anime/manga adaptations. Here's some projects that could work on modest, manageable budgets, are easy to adapt, and could win over Western audiences handily
No Stars April 3, 2017
Ratings for reviews, whether in stars, numbers, or letter grades, are a detrimental influence to both criticism and consumer-service journalism. Here's why I'll never use them again if I can help it
The Cracks In The 'Shell' March 31, 2017
Whatever my own readings of the film, the 2017 'Ghost In The Shell' is still problematic in ways that are potentially a bad model for other live-action anime
On Missing Out And Yet Not Missing Out March 24, 2017
How to stay honest and review what sincerely interests you, when there's so much out there that clamors for your attention
I'm Gonna Carry That Weight November 12, 2016
How I almost folded Ganriki.org's tent, and how I decided against it
The Long And Winding Review October 31, 2016
Covering an ongoing series can become an exercise in minutiae or futility. Here's the strategy I chose to keep my involvement active without also having it eat me alive
The Long And The Short Of It February 9, 2016
What kind of story is best told in a short form versus over the long haul?
The Kids Are Alright (But The Grownups Are Cool, Too) January 19, 2016
On the benefits of anime featuring adult characters -- even if it isn't anime for an adult audience
What's Different This Time Around? November 2, 2015
How all the ways you change between re-watchings of a favorite show give you new perspective on old things
(Video) Gaming The System October 21, 2015
Is it possible, or wise, to critique anime adaptations of video games as if they had come from from any other source?
Meet Me Halfway, Would You? September 19, 2015
Fans shouldn't be peeved when material made to satisfy them first and foremost isn't welcomed by audiences with no obligation to meet that material halfway
What I Did (Not Do) On My Vacation July 27, 2015
For the first time in years, I attended Otakon as a fan and not press, and felt none the poorer for it
High Standards Or Impossible Standards? July 18, 2015
Do the impossibly high standards some fans set for anime come from the material itself, or from the way they're introduced to it?
A 'Legend' Without The Myth July 3, 2015
With 'Legend of the Galactic Heroes' finally licensed for English release, it's all the more important to examine it critically, not reverentially
Finishing Someone Else's Work June 29, 2015
When does it make sense to have others continue work left unfinished by the creator's death, and when is it best to just leave well enough alone?
Making A Case For The Old School June 13, 2015
Is there any way to get around the prejudices of a modern audience that looks at a classic show and just sees something 'old'?
The Live-Action 'AKIRA': Still A Movie Without An Audience June 10, 2015
Yet another attempt at a live-action 'AKIRA' has geared up, but the main problem remains: who would bother seeing it?
Anime's (Partly) Crowdfunded Future June 6, 2015
Direct financing of anime, both original works and the distribution of reissues, has just begun to show both its limits and its promise
Somewhere Between Spectacle And Sincerity May 18, 2015
What constitutes a 'classic' in anime, and what does it mean to define that?
In Praise Of Slow Viewing May 2, 2015
Binge-watching has its pleasures, but so does pacing yourself -- especially when honing a critical mentality
A Brain Has No Off Switch April 25, 2015
A critical mind, once engaged, is hard to disengage -- but needs to be counterbalanced by the will to be entertained
Another Lowdown On High Praise April 18, 2015
More on how the hype cycle creates problems for fans and critics alike
The Lowdown On High Praise April 11, 2015
How hyperbole for 'Steins;Gate' led to thoughts about how hyperbole can be counterproductive
Why Sony's 'Robotech' Is A Better Idea Than It Sounds April 6, 2015
Of all the anime-adaptation projects contemplated by Hollywood lately, 'Robotech' stands a better chance than most of surviving the transition
Yes To The Canon, No To The Sacred Cows April 3, 2015
Anime needs a canon, for fans both new and old-- but one that manifests as a process, rather than as a list
Mistakes Are Not Unmade March 29, 2015
On learning from one's errors in the wake of the 'Robotech/Macross' article
What We Talk About When We Talk About Anime March 20, 2015
Seven of the questions I ask myself about any anime, and the questions they in turn provoke
Three Episodes, No Waiting March 9, 2015
Just how much of a chance should you give a show before you bail?
How Gary Whitta's Live-Action 'AKIRA' Screenplay Got It All Wrong February 27, 2015
An interview with the screenwriter for the Western remake of 'AKIRA' only underscores all the more why such a project makes no sense
On 'Princess Kaguya's Lack Of An Oscar February 23, 2015
What if the real meaning of 'Kaguya's Oscar loss is that we should stop waiting for validation from all the wrong places?
Influence: Good, Bad, And Ugly January 26, 2015
There should be no shying away from how the influences left by our favorite works are not always good ones
A Critical Path To Japan January 19, 2015
Is our enjoyment of anime enhanced by having an intimate knowledge of Japan, or is that something only those who call themselves critics should worry about?
In Print Or Out Of Reach? January 9, 2015
Centering criticism of media around available, in-print titles is useful in the short run, but deprives both audiences and critics of real food for thought in the long run
Confessions Of A Not-So-Former Anime Crate-Digger December 1, 2014
How the near-disappearance of physical stores has transformed one of the classic pleasures of anime fandom: stumbling across hidden treasure
One Year Of Ganriki, 30 Years Of Fandom November 3, 2014
On the first anniversary of Ganriki.org's launch, a look back at our initial year -- and anime's past thirty years
Well, Is Anime A Genre Or A Medium? October 13, 2014
How people see anime, as genre or medium, says as much about how we label cultural experiences generally as it does about the beholders
Does The Packaging Make The Fan? September 29, 2014
Why deluxe packaging and other such marketing stunts may make it harder for fans to express their devotion, not easier -- and not just because of the pricetags
Why We Don't Need 'Objective' Anime Criticism September 22, 2014
What's needed in anime criticism -- and in most any good criticism of art or entertainment -- is to lay our prejudices on the table first
All Aboard The Fandom Train September 15, 2014
Does introducing people to anime make them into fans, or does anime fandom arise more spontaneously than that?
On Older Anime Characters: A Touch Of Gray Would Suit Us Anyway June 9, 2014
When will we see older characters in anime as things other than supporting cast members, comic relief, or objects of repugnance?
Anime: Now A Major Motion Picture May 27, 2014
How the practice of shifting anime from TV broadcast or video to theatrical release first has delivered a new form factor -- and a new aesthetic
Like Someone In Love May 6, 2014
Our love for things and our critical distance from them don't have to be in contradiction with each other
Honor Between Thieves April 21, 2014
If Hollywood is allegedly plundering anime for ideas and inspirations, that only shows it has good taste -- but it's an awkward thesis at best
The Wrong Kind Of Faithful April 4, 2014
Should adapting something also mean attempting to improve it, even when its flaws are a big part of how it is what it is?
Why Miyazaki's 'Otaku' Problem Is Everyone's Problem February 10, 2014
A creative industry shouldn't be led by its own least common denominator of taste
Why There Will Be No 'Next Miyazaki' December 23, 2013
It's a mistake to use Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli as a yardstick for other anime creators -- and not despite their greatness, but because of it
Cheap Thrills Or Lofty Boredom? December 9, 2013
How a 'good-bad' movie (and a 'bad-good' one) changed my thinking about Makoto Shinkai, 'Tekken: Blood Vengeance', and my own critical standards
Just Like Me: The Otaku Protagonist October 28, 2013
Why a growing number of anime feature otaku as a protagonist, for reasons greater than audience identification alone
The Spinoff Film Problem October 21, 2013
Why no feature-film spinoff of an anime series is ever going to work as more than a distraction