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GamelogoBy Australian Ninja

Remnants & Relics. Buttonhole *Special* Feature

Welcome dear reader to Remnants & Relics, the first in an ongoing series of features looking back at various aspects of yesterday's video games. This series is one that I'd hoped to kick off many months ago, but I just haven't had the time to do it justice, until now. So consider this your opportunity to put on your best pair or rose-tinted glasses, open up a luke-warm can of clichés and prepare to hop aboard the way-back-machine.... It came from beyond two dimensions! -A Look Back at Isometric Gaming-

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ToonlogoBy Australian Ninja

ACMI Day Tripper

Welcome Buttonhole readers to another feature that is so choc-full of goodness that I've divided it into several sections. The top half is about the Indy video games showcased at ACMI. The bottom half is about the Pixar exhibit. It's ridiculously long and all terribly interesting to read, so you may as well read it in two halves, or just the parts that interest you. After reading about the ACMI exhibits on their website and getting more than a little excited, I decided to make the perilous trek to inner Melbourne. With time on my side and money stuffed in my pocket I ventured forth to the train station. Once on board I passed the time by staring out the window, reading a volume of Dark Horse's Concrete and snacking on tasty fruit. Arriving at Flinders St, I wandered around until inevitably finding my way out of the rat-maze like station.

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ToonlogoBy Australian Ninja

Classic Comic-book Review. Kraven's Last Hunt

"Here lies Spider-Man - Slain by the Hunter" So reads the grave of one of histories greatest superheros. "But he's not dead, is he? What happened to everyone's favourite web-slinger? Spidey seems to be alive and well now, what with his three movie deal and a string of monthly Marvel comic-book titles to his name, so why was he buried six feet under? The year is 1987. The company is Marvel. The character is Sergei Kravinov also known as 'Kraven the Hunter.' Back in the 60's Stan and Steve (Lee and Ditko, respectively) churned out a heap of cool villains for the title "Amazing Spider-Man." Doctor Octopus, The Cham

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Madlax Volume 1 DVD cover Madlax Volume 1- Connections. DVD Review

Japanese schoolgirls? I'm sold

Publisher: Madman Entertainment

Sat, 13 August 2005

Ichibod Profile Pic_JDEPP by: ichibod

Madlax Vol I – Connections is the first of hopefully many Madman releases to hit my hot and clammy hands. From the creators of Noir Madlax is another of the great girls with guns type of affairs, and hey what's hotter than a pretty young girl in an evening dress taking out military personnel and machinery, while tenderly caressing her all too big gun and thinking about pasta!!!

As is the case with many of these collections of animes (part 1 of a complete series) the story appears fragmented as we flit between Madlax, the story's assassin (or hot chick with big guns) and Margaret Burton an orphaned school girl with a strange and mysterious connection to madlax.

The character animation is a pretty standard affair ("standard" these days means pretty darn good); although some of the scenery shots are in a class of their own. From pristine jungle to urban chaos, I loved the attention to detail. Poignant moments, from happy to downright depressing, are emphasised by a wonderful use of light and shadow.

Madlax Volume 1 DVD screenshot 1
Extreme hair drying method #17
Musically, apart from those corny into and ending songs that so many animes seem to use (although I believe Neon Genesis Evangelion did it the best), Madlax employs a great use of light mood music and background effects to work its scenes. Although of course the action sequences have that great early 80's rock cliché music pumping throughout. Do check out the lyrics for the opening and closing themes and please email if it all makes any more sense to you than me!

Special features are limited on Vol I and will appeal only to those of us who need to watch everything. The special features here seem to be a bit of filler, rather than offering any real treats. The one gem on offer though is "Conversations with SSS". This takes fragments of animation and adds an alternative narrative. Watch for the harassment of a soldier by a hapless pizza customer. GOLD!

If you have seen Noir and enjoyed it Madlax will appeal to you. If you have not seen Noir; GO BUY IT! Madlax is a very respectable runner up to Noir, but not quite in the same league.

Volume II is due for release in September 2005 from our friends at Madman and I am looking forward to seeing just how this story unfolds.

Ill let Madlax have the last word here.
(Random pilot who's life is threatened)"Whose side are you on anyway?"
(Madlax) "I don't like choosing sides"

by: ichibod

More articles by ichibod

The series is off to a respectable start. Certainly good enough to make viewers intersted in seeing what happens next.

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More Toons

Q&A with Handy
Tales from Earthsea. Anime DVD Review
Armageddon Expo '07 Report
Le Chevalier D'Eon V1. Anime DVD Review
Manifest '07 Report

Which of these animated shows is the funniest?
The Simpsons
South Park
Family Guy
King of the Hill
Looney Tunes (Bugs Bunny etc.)
The Flintstones

ToonlogoBy Borgieman

Manifest '07 Report

Ninja's note: Once again, it's time for another Buttonhole report on the Melbourne Anime Festival, otherwise known as Manifest 2007. If you missed Ichibod's feature on a previous Manifest, check it out here. This Manifest coverage comes to you courtesy of forum regular and newest Buttonhole contributor Borgieman, a cool guy who knows his Anime and has been known to play a video game or two. So read on true believers! A Day at Manifest 2007

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ToonlogoBy Australian Ninja

Only Yesterday. Anime Review

The problem with having favourite films is that every time I watch another Studio Ghibli film it becomes my new favourite. It kind of renders the word 'favourite' meaningless when every Studio Ghibli film takes my breath away. Still, I can't complain about being thoroughly entertained by this whimsical and insightful film, "Only Yesterday". This gem was directed by Isao Takahata, well known for his anime film Grave of the Fireflies. Although Only Yesterday is a light hearted film that ambles along at a leisurely pace, it still manages to explore themes such as love, work, family relationship struggles, following your dreams and country versus city living. In the film, the main character Taeko decides to take a working vacation in the country, getting away from her office bound job and unexpectedly starts t

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ToonlogoBy Jason

Speed Grapher V1. Anime Review

Well, "I don't like it" was my initial feeling when viewing this Anime for the first time. Subsequent viewings haven't changed my views a great deal. Nothing really stands out as being absolute shit but it seems that this series tries too hard. It's almost like they were more interested in creating something 'edgy' and confronting but sadly forgot to include an even remotely palatable story. The hero of this particular piece is a bloke called Tatsumi Saiga. Tatsumi is a photographer and a veteran war journalist for whom taking photos has become somewhat of a fetish. Although he seems to have become jaded - nothing is worth wasting his film on - that is, at least until he stumbles across an exclusive club for the mega rich

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