So I attended Madoka Magica's one night, four theatre stint in Vancouver on the 14th:
-Our theatre sold out at least 90 minutes prior to showtime, so I'm glad I preordered. My guess is the location my club went to would probably the busiest of the four but it's hard to tell.
-Two people brought body pillows, neither Madoka related. I suppose the glass half full view is it was only two.
-Movie was 2 hours, 10 minutes and covered episodes 1-8.
What I liked:
-Madoka on the big screen. I got what I came for.
-Use of surround sound when Madoka is searching for the source of Kyuubey's (telepathic) voice.
-Minimal cuts: They cut Madoka's deam at the beginning (despite it being referenced later) and Mami's backstory, and I'm wondering if the latter will be merged into Homura's backstory in Part II. Everything else was minor streamlining.
-Shown with subs, which is not the case at all anime movies I've been too. Aniplex gets it!
What I didn't like:
-I recall thinking that there was at least one "lost in translation" moment at a critical moment with the subs, though I can't quite recall what I thought the error was.
-Pacing: While I'm glad they kept almost everything, it did feel a bit... long-winded? Odd, since the movie itself wasn't that long.
-The minor changes - ie. Remixes in the soundtrack, etc. None of them were bad, but in many cases the originals feel more "iconic".
As for the before/after party - food options near the theatre were very limited but the company was great. My girlfriend and many of my anime club buddies were present, I also ran into one of my favourite cosplay models (who sounded like she was losing her voice…) and a Japanese exchange student who liked a lot of the stuff I did (Bakemonogatari, Hanasaku Iroha and Kotoura-san in addition to Madoka).
Don't really want to get involved in a thread that got that many posts in so little time, so in regards to VRO, I'll just say that I think the "Nanoha meets Strikes Witches" characterization is pretty accurate and like both shows, it's probably going to have quite a few fans who like it in spite of the fanservice. (I know such fans for both shows. Plus, note that Girls und Panzer is essentially matching Strike Witches 2's sales thus far despite having far less - or at least much classier - fanservice.).
Biggest surprise of this season so far for me is that I'm finding some lesser hyped entrants like Maoyuu Maou Yuusha and Katoura-san much more satisfying than Shaft and KyoAni's entrants - particular in KyoAni's case given my well known love of Hyouka and how much I think the K-On team (who I understand is behind Tamako Market - improved over that franchise' run.
OreShura is a toss up - I adore the OP but I can't decide whether I find Masuzu funny or just an utter dick - and coming from a admitted Hitagi fanboy, that says something.
GJ-Bu amused me and is odd among 4koma adaptations in that it actually does have a male main character - I found it oddly charming but probably not a must see unless you're a genre fan.
VRO was much better than I expected but still ranks towards the lower end of this seasons shows for me thus far.
And again - Maoyuu Maou Yuusha and especially Kotoura-san are the big winners so far for me, alongside a very strong slate of carryovers from Fall.
1) Well, I think that the ending of Kokoro Connect would have worked better for me if Iori had shown more change. In fairness, maybe some of this is an adaptation issue. I read that in the light novel, Iori changes her hairstyle. At least that would outwardly represent a mostly inner change (a change in why Iori is the way she is, if not a change in the way she is).
2) Yeah, I did see a strong contrast between Iori and the other major characters. It's not that I dislike those other major characters, it's just that they're defined by certain characteristics in a way that most real people aren't. You know how I say that Yui Hirasawa doesn't have an "off" switch? Well, it's kind of like that. Taichi, Inaba, Aoki, and Yui don't have many different facets to their personality. What they do have is largely fine, and they're certainly entertaining characters (as Yui Hirasawa herself is). But with Iori, she just feels a bit more real to me due to how there's a lot of inner diversity to her.
And to be fair, I have much less problem with Taichi and his sister than I do with most brother/sister pairs in anime. I do like how I get the impression that Taichi's little sister is just playfully teasing him (which is cute), and that she really does just love him as a sibling.
Girlfriend and I marathoned the Kokoro Connect Michi Random arc tonight.
I didn’t have nearly as big a problem with the ending as you did – I did see Iori’s journey as a deconstruction, but in more of a “genki-moe girls are as capable of depression and grinding axes as the rest of us” vein. I didn’t see her overcoming those issues at the end as ruining the point at all. I did wonder a little bit why she rejected Taichi in the end but I think the ambiguity there may have been intentional. I also like that they actually concluded the love triangle, far too many light novel romances just go nowhere.
Major difference in how we ended up where we did would appear to be that you found the contrast between Iori and the rest of the character notable and tried to find a meaning to it, I did not.
Also, regarding Taichi and his sister: they’re one of the few pairs of this kind I like, because there’s just enough subtly for me to see them as loving each other merely as siblings. Kind of like how I could just barely write off some of Koyomi’s more perverted actions in Bakemonogatari as figments of an overactive imagination – the lack of this subtly is the one major complain I have with Nise and Neko in comparison. (Also, the reactions to Taichi's little outburst of glee were just funnier than your average bit of siscon humour.)