Editorial

RWBY Volume 7 Song Rankings


It’s time to look at the songs from the new RWBY soundtrack that came out. In particular I am ranking the 9 new lyrical songs and won’t be counting the remixes from previous volumes. I’ll rank them from last to first as we see where they all stack up. The 1st and second place entries are quite easy and then after that is when it’s time for some serious thought. I can definitely say right now that the series continues to have an absolutely stellar soundtrack. You’d be hard pressed to find anything that even comes close to this in another title. This volume’s probably got one of the happiest overall soundtracks compared to the others I suppose reflecting the hope found here. I think the theme of the volume was supposed to be Hope unless I’m thinking of the last one. Either way that makes sense. All of the songs below can be found on Youtube or any other CD as well as for purchase online. I’ve attached a link next to the top ranked song where you can listen to them online.

9. Let’s Get Real

I have to say that the very beginning of this song feels like something out of Megaman. I like the quick techno strum there. After that this song slows down quite a bit though and definitely isn’t really my style. I like the overall aesthetic of the song but it’s not going to stop this one from bringing in the last spot on the list. Speed up the tempo and I think this song will rank a little higher though.

8. Celebrate

Well, we’ve definitely got another party tune showing up here. It’s definitely the kind of song you’d expect to hear at the disco. That said, it’s the kind of song that doesn’t sound as good outside of that context. It will be good for a play or two but next to the songs coming up it definitely can’t stack up well enough. When I’m celebrating I’ll probably be playing a song closer to the top 2 coming up. Still, with the more party feel of this soundtrack that should help for when playing the soundtrack at parties.

7. Brand New Day

This is probably one of the weakest of the group for me. It’s more loud than catchy. It’s going for more of a party feel but one that doesn’t gel as smoothly as the rest of the songs. This is one of the tunes that I wouldn’t really be listening to all that often. Still, it’s not as if it means the song’s that bad. It’s not able to keep up with the others but it’s still a pretty decent song in its own right.

6. Touch The Sky

This is definitely one of the happier songs we’ve got in RWBY. It shows that the team is finally back together and having a good time. That’s good because it’s been a little bit since they were able to just have fun. It’s got a nice beat to it. I don’t see this becoming one of the more popular songs down the road or one that I will have on loop for very long but it’s a solid inspirational song. You don’t want everything to be super rock….well I wouldn’t mind, but most people want some variety and this song does a good job of providing that.

5. Until The End

This is a very somber song. In some ways it may be the most somber one in the series because it never transitions into Rock the way that a lot of the others do. It’s just a song that doesn’t leave the heroes full of hope afterwards as things don’t look like they’re about to get better. Regardless I thought it was executed pretty well. I’m usually more of a fast paced song kind of guy but when it’s a sad song then that can absolutely work without a fast tempo.

4. Trust Love

It’s time for the opening of the Volume. My favorite intro of all time is still the very first one but the series has always been pretty good with these. I’d put this song in the top half of the new ones. It’s definitely very fast and also nostalgic to an extent because I’ve heard the song very often while watching the episodes. This is not one that you want to skip when starting the episodes.

3. Fear

This is definitely a pretty intense theme and one that’s fitting for Salem’s return. She’s only had two themes now but between this and Divide they’re definitely both incredible. It really shows how Salem gets into the heads of her opponents. One line is about “Who will you see in the dark when you’re all alone” and quite a few of the characters likely see Salem. It’s why betraying her would be pretty much unthinkable and why the heroes fear her so greatly. I am looking forward to seeing her live up to the hype in the next volume. At this point you can’t really be satisfied with anything less than her completely overwhelming the heroes. This is the perfect time for her to prove her power once and for all.

2. Hero

This is one song that I think loses a bit of the intensity from the full version. The opening lyrics are going for a very emotional/sad kind of tune. Still, once we get to the good part of the song it rocks on from start to finish. It was a great song and does a good job of depicting the self sacrifice Ironwood was able to go through to accomplish his mission. Being a hero is often a lot harder than it looks and is often not a glamorous task. You gotta be ready to not be very popular at times and it can be very easy to lose perspective and become like the villains you work on stopping.

1. War
Click here for the song
This is easily the best song and it’s not even close. I remember being shell shocked when it shows up in part because it shows up with the greatest fight in the entire series. I do wish we could have kept part of the intro music for that scene but I suppose it’s technically a different part of the OST for that. Either way it’s a powerful song about thinking someone was your friend and trusting them, only to be betrayed in the end. I know hero vs hero fights may get a lot of critiques, but that’s why I love the concept. Unlike a hero vs villain fight where you’re clearly meant to root for one team who is in the right, a matchup like this is interesting because both sides are doing what they believe is the correct decision.

In a logical sense AceOps has some points here. The heroes were already being overrun by a bunch of normal Grimm who were being summoned. Salem is on her way with an army many times larger than that. It seems unlikely that the heroes can last for long and they allegedly don’t have enough time to evacuate everyone either. Thus, their decision to leave and save who they can makes some sense. It also doesn’t help that Team RWBY’s leader burst into tears right when Salem showed up and mentioned her mother. There’s nothing more soul crushing for a team than to have their leader drop out just like that.

Of course Team RWBY is ultimately in the right here because you should never sacrifice anyone. If they die then at least they die together as opposed to just some people managing to survive this round. If you had to throw a lot of people away in order to survive then it’s just not worth it. The song talks about never trusting someone again and after being betrayed like that it would definitely be hard to make new friends. It takes a long time to trust someone but only an instant to lose that for good.

So, that’s definitely my top song and it concludes the rankings for Volume 7. I look forward to seeing what songs we get in the next volume since there are always some real All Stars in every volume. It’s going to be very hard to top this one though. Of course, there’s usually a song in every volume that makes me feel the same way. The series is just always ready to hit the next level.

Editorial

What makes for a good villain?


It’s time to look at what makes for a good villain. Now, there are a lot of factors to consider when looking at such a sweeping generalization. There are many different kinds of villains and different situations to put them in of course. As such it can be difficult to just grab a few attributes and say that they make a villain. As a disclaimer you have to consider a whole lot but I am going to list 5 factors which I see in my favorite villains. If you have all 5 you are basically guaranteed to be an amazing villain but even just having one of them should help quite a lot in rising you up the charts. As you may or may not know, I consider Bass EXE to be the greatest villain of all time. He is an example of a villain who meets all 5 criteria. He also happens to be the most powerful villain if you ask me but that’s a discussion for another time. So without further build up, lets take a look at the 5 main criteria.

Cool Design

This first one is pretty obvious. It’s hard to like a villain when you just don’t like their design. It would be next to impossible for me to like a villain like Bubbleman. No matter how powerful he may become, I wouldn’t be able to take him seriously. To a degree voice is a similar aspect that can make or break a villain but it’s not universal the way a design is. You could be reading a book or a manga where the description of the design is still there but you can’t picture the voice as well. A good design is a great first step for a villain. It helps you instantly assess what this guy/girl is all about. It’s your initial impression and those are absolutely critical. You’re not likely to forget your first impression of a villain.

As with just about everything media related designs are very subjective. What I consider to be a good design will typically have a strong color contrast/sleek design. Purple is a color that is usually associated with villains and always tends to work quite well. Red and black make for a solid pair. Then you’ve got pure white/silver like Zeref which is pretty great. Ideally you want a design that looks combat ready although you can also go for one that is startlingly happy/unassuming which can work out well like the final boss of Undertale. A bad design to me is one that is either very generic so you forget it, or a design where you can instantly tell the villain can’t fight.

Honor Code

The honor code is definitely a pretty big one. I don’t want a villain who hides behind others or hostages all the time. I want a villain who is confident in their own abilities and isn’t afraid to tangle with the heroes whether it be physically or mentally. A good villain knows exactly what their goals are and sticks true to them. It’s a matter of pride and villains need to have that as well as heroes. The main example I’m using for this is Grimmjow. He and Ichigo had a rivalry right from the start of the series. Grimmjow absolutely wants to crush the lead but he wants to do it on his terms. He’s not going to be satisfied beating up on a weakened Ichigo. He even has Orihime heal the lead so they can tangle which is pretty much unheard of. That always helps me gain respect for a villain. A true villain should be able to overcome his opponent when they are at their peak and without outside help. Grimmjow’s even willing to fight other villains to ensure he gets his fair fight.

I’m not opposed to friendship power within the villains of course, but in general I like when a villain can just handle his business right from the start. Likewise a “dirty” trick during a fight may not be out of bounds if it was already 1 on 1. At that point anything goes of course and if the villain has already been fighting then more power to him. A villain who admits defeat and starts attacking random civilians to distract the hero has already lost in every sense of the word. You have to stay true to your ideals to the very end.

Has to be a threat

This is another one that probably seems obvious but is worth noting. If you’re a villain who gets completely wrecked time and time again then it’s going to be very hard to enjoy the character. This could work for a comic relief villain which follows a very different set of rules but not for a big villain that we’re supposed to take seriously. A villain needs to take care of business and that should be established early on. This is very common so there are probably millions of good examples I can use. The one I choose here would be Hideyoshi’s first appearance in Sengoku Basara or at least his first appearance in the war. He immediately sets the tone by forcing both armies to acknowledge him. He stops a huge array of arrows in their tracks with simple wind pressure and then takes down a captain in a single hit. This guy’s power is on a whole other level and it’s just hard to top that debut. I was certainly very satisfied at the very least. When you’re a threat like that, you’re forced to acknowledge the villain right away.

Has solid motivations

Now, I’m all for the villains who just want to destroy the world of course, but what really takes a villain to the next level is when they have solid goals. If the goal is something you can understand then that will play a big role in how endearing they are. A villain who is upset because some guy elbowed him when walking through a line? That’s so petty you may lose respect. A villain whose world is about to be crushed but can save it by destroying the other world first? Well, that’s something you can buy into. He would even possibly be considered the Hero from another point of view. There’s a saying that everyone is the hero of their own story. While I don’t find that to be true necessarily, I think a villain’s motivation should feel that way. You never lose sight of the fact that they are a villain but that’s not the important thing. The important thing is that this is now a villain you can sympathize with.

For this one I’ll use Mr. Freeze as an example from Sub Zero and the Batman animated series His wife is terminally ill and only has a slim shot of survival. The way to do this is to do a blood transfusion with someone from a rare blood type. Only problem is that the transfusion will destroy whoever undergoes the operation because of how much blood is needed. Perhaps if you could find two people then this could work but there isn’t a whole lot of time and Mr. Freeze is already a known criminal. As a result he decides to kidnap someone so that he can save the wife which leads into the movie. This is a perfect example as you know that what Freeze is doing is wrong and he knows it as well. Still, it is worth it to him in order to save his wife and that’s as solid a motivation as you can get. It made him a particularly great villain in the DCAU and one of the best Batman villains out there. Later on Freeze eventually begins to get buried by feelings of rage and feelings of revenge towards society but this is how he started out,.

Overwhelming confidence

Finally we have another trait which ties in to the others. A good villain needs to have absolute confidence. These villains aren’t afraid to defy authority even if a higher up tells them to do something. I already used Grimmjow as an example but that’s something he did quite well. The villains who are quickly to kneel before another don’t have the same true respect for themselves that other villains have. A lot of the best villains in history have always been overwhelmingly confident to the point of arrogance. They may readily lower their defenses just to show the heroes how absolutely outclassed they are. Honestly, it was hard to pick an example here because you could pick almost literally any villain and you would be good to go. That just shows how critical this factor is.

Ultimately I’m going with Jiren. How confident do you have to be to close your eyes and meditate in the middle of a battle with your universe on the line? You got to admit that this takes a whole lot of guts on his part. A lot of villains absolutely wouldn’t dare even if they were powerful. It’s a great moment though because that unwavering conviction in your abilities is exactly what you need in order to succeed.

So those are the 5 traits a good villain really should have. If you have all of these traits then you are probably going to go down as one of the all time great villains. Whenever a villain is introduced with some of these traits I get excited. Now, there are certainly things a villain can do in order to lose that hype which I will go into in my reverse editorial on what makes for a bad villain. That one should be fun and I already know quite a few off the top of my head. A lot of villains will end up having traits from both in which case you just have to see which side wins out. It’s rare to find a perfect character like Bass EXE but there are still tons of other amazing villains. In theory every great series should have a great villain to combat the hero. If you have no great villains then that could be trouble for the series long term.

Editorial

Clash of Ideals: Shirou vs Archer Who is right?


It goes without saying that this editorial will contain complete spoilers for Fate Stay Night. If you haven’t watched any of the routes yet, particularly Unlimited Blade Works then you should hold off on reading this editorial. I will do my best not to go too into depth here with spoilers as they aren’t really needed for the most part but some of them are inevitable. Particularly any involving Shirou and Archer.

I really like philosophical debates. It’s something that I always find fascinating in a show or movie. Shows have a better opportunity to really get the views across though as a movie only has so much time. It’s also difficult to try and portray both versions well. Typically as soon as the debate starts you know which one the movie or show is going to portray as correct. As a result the other one may end up being portrayed with strawman arguments that don’t really work. An example of a recent movie that did this really well was Infinity War. While Thanos is a villain and there’s absolutely no denying that, the goal he was fighting for at least made sense and had its own logic. Same for Light Yagami in Deathnote. There are classic battles of good and evil to be found here with good arguments made for both. Even when the villain is losing he doesn’t suddenly disregard his ideals, they just ended up losing.

A big part of Fate is the difference between Shirou and Archer’s ideals. They are both pacifists who effectively work as heroes but go in very different paths. Shirou believes in the concept of being a Hero of Justice. He believes that this is an unshakable concept and as a hero you don’t compromise. Shirou wants to save everyone he possibly can without exception. If someone’s in trouble he’ll jump in even if he doesn’t really stand a chance in a fight. He’s always been about helping everyone ever since he inherited this dream from his father Kiritsugu. Part of this stems from how Shirou had to survive a mass death experience as a child. He saw first hand how it feels to have your life saved and it also underscored the value of life to him. Shirou may not have a lot of power at the start of the series, but he uses it to help others.

Then you have Archer. Archer was once a hero who believed in such ideals, but has become quite jaded with humanity. Part of the reason for this is that his role in life is to be an eternal deterrent force. He is forced to travel to different time periods where there is a conflict and destroy the evil side. He would destroy 10 people to save 100, 1000 to save 10,000, etc. After a while, Archer had claimed more fatalities than even most villains could. Technically he was helping to provide balance to the world, but after a while the whole thing seemed futile to him. He had to compromise on his ideals many times until he finally came up with the ones he has now. He won’t save everyone and believes that’s impossible. Instead he will always look for the logical choice of who to murder to save someone else. It’s a very different framework as you’re actively looking for targets. This eventually even leads him to target Shirou as that kid would ultimately go on to murder many people in the future if he wasn’t stopped.

It’s an interesting loop there and the show has lots of debates on this. Shirou and Archer confront each other on their ideals quite a bit and absolutely do not get along.

So in the end, who is right here? The show plays it out in a way where you’re left to your judgment on this to an extent. Shirou is the main character and he is a good guy while Archer is unmistakably a villain so to an extent you can say that Shirou will have the edge here but the show never demeans Archer’s arguments. In a way a lot of the show is Shirou basically admitting that he thinks Archer is correct, but that won’t stop him. “You may be correct but that doesn’t mean you’re right” was a pretty good line there since it shows Shirou may believe that Archer is logically correct but that it still isn’t the right thing to do morally. Shirou ultimately holds true to his ideals and Archer hopes that he can manage to carry it out, but we have already seen that it didn’t work out for Archer.

I think another subtle aspect the show gives us that makes the debate more interesting is Archer’s portrayal. To counter the fact that Shirou is the main character, Archer is portrayed as being a lot more effective. He’s far more confident than Shirou as well as being more powerful. He has everything that Shirou has ever wanted in terms of ability. Shirou’s main grievance has been the fact that he currently lacks the power to be a true Hero of Justice. He has the ideals but not the power and that’s part of why he really can’t stand Archer. It works for the audience well too because Archer’s points become more compelling considering the amount of power he has. If Archer, one of the strongest characters in the show (I know that’s debatable but purely from what we saw in the show I would absolutely say this) says it is impossible to save everyone then it adds credibility. He just appears to be very wise and knowledgeable. The way in which he articulates his thoughts always makes him appear to be a step ahead of Shirou as well. This brief clip below shows how they both decline Caster’s offer but how different their responses are.

In general he’s just a lot cooler than Shirou although of course you can’t factor that in when considering the arguments. It intentionally does make this task more difficult though. Even Shirou is always incredibly impressed with Archer, below is a scene where Archer effortlessly takes down an opponent that Shirou couldn’t even touch.

There are 4 main timelines in Stay Night: Fate, Unlimited Blade Works, Heaven’s Feel, and the one where Archer comes from. There are tons of other timelines of course but those are the main ones. Whether Shirou holds true to his ideals is what you have to decide, but I believe he will. He’s already lived through a lot of conflict and had to reaffirm his ideals so I don’t see him having any more trouble in the future. The whole final fight with Archer and Shirou was really about ideals. In terms of pure ability Archer could have destroyed Shirou in an instant but what he really needed was for Shirou to relent and say that Archer was right. Winning the physical battle meant nothing if he couldn’t win the verbal one. So, short answer here is that I think Shirou is definitely right on both accounts. Let’s tackle the first element of being a Hero of Justice first:

Should you try to save everyone?

This is one that My Hero tackled as well with Lemillion being satisfied with saving 1 million people while Deku aims to save everyone. They both failed Eri initially, but that’s the concept Shirou is going for. You have to at least try to save everyone even if it appears to be impossible. The instant you decide that someone can’t be saved you’ve compromised on your ideals. It will become easier in the future to suddenly decide that someone else can’t be saved and that’s when it’ll all start to snowball. That’s exactly the issue Archer came up to. As soon as he started murdering someone, he found it easier to keep on going and that didn’t exactly work out. At the end of the day as a hero your duty is to try and save everyone.

Shirou throws himself into danger quite a lot in order to do this. He may be outmatched and certainly got a lot of heat for this but he made the right decisions. In the first show he was a bit overboard with how he would try to fight instead of Saber though. I understand fighting side by side with her like in the second show more which makes sense, but he does need to realize that he’s weaker. If he dies then he can’t help anyone else. I think you gotta risk your life if there’s someone that needs saving but if there’s someone else that’s already doing the job then jumping in is more about getting the credit. In this case he just thought she couldn’t handle it so at least the intentions were good.

This is a point for Shirou. Archer tries to say that saving everyone then goes as far as counting the villains and will always be impossible. He’s right if you take it to the extreme of course, but in that case Berserker was attacking Saber and going for the kill. In that sense it makes sense to save Saber and not worry about Berserker at the moment. It’s not to say Shirou wouldn’t try saving him in the future but in that moment it wouldn’t make sense. What it boils down to is that Archer is looking at this from the numbers and sees that it’s impossible to save everyone. As a result he thinks the whole notion is no good. I understand that take, but he is missing the important piece which is that you always have to at least try to save everyone.

One Life vs Many

The second point is risking it all to save one person at the possible expense of many. This is a point Archer would be completely against. Lets say you have one person tied to a bomb that’s about to blow up. You can disarm it right away but the person attached to the bomb will die. Alternately you can try to untie him but the process will take a while so there’s a large chance that the bomb will blow up first and destroy 10,000 people. Archer would very quickly take out the bomb so that only one person dies while Shirou would just trust himself to be able to untie the hostage in time. This is another one where I agree with Shirou. I’ve always thought that you have to try and save the one even if it risks the many. There is just no point in everyone living if you had to sacrifice someone. If it doesn’t work then you all die together at least.

It’s why that always ends up being one of the most sympathetic reasons for a villain. In Sub Zero this is what made Mr. Freeze a compelling villain because he was just trying to save his wife the whole time. At no point in the villain do you forget that he is in fact a villain. It’s important not to lose sight of that. However, it’s a goal that you can understand and relate to because there aren’t many things you would not do in order to save your significant other. A lot of times this one is portrayed as the right thing to do is to save many lives. It’s a very interesting concept and one that has had many books written about it. It’s a very popular philosophical take. I’ve always been with the one life here. You have to do all that you can to save the one even if it ends up risking the many. If someone close to you is at stake then even if you have to fight off whole legions to save her then that’s what you have to do. In quite a few series this ends up with the heroes being forced to take on a ton of other “Heroes” (They start to lose their status when they defend this) or villains. Sometimes the hero even relents to the peer pressure and submits which is always unfortunate and can ruin an ending for me (Flashpoint Paradox) but at the end of the day you have to stay true to your ideals.

It may be logical to sacrifice one if it’ll save thousands or even millions, but the numbers don’t matter to me. Even if it’s to save the whole universe, if you have to sacrifice someone to do it then that’s clearly not worth it. You can’t sacrifice your ideals to save everyone. At the end of the day the one life that is in trouble is the one that you have to worry about. Even worse is if you want to save someone but don’t do it because someone threatens you. There are quite a few Saint Seiya characters who are guilty of this but this editorial’s about over so I won’t go into that here.

So at the end of the day Shirou was right. I do appreciate the debates he had with Archer in the show though. Both characters were given a fair opportunity to explain their piece and rationalizations. It’s also portrayed in a way where you aren’t meant to feel bad with siding with one over the other. Both of them have very valid takes and I imagine there will be fans of both ideologies. It’s not as if one of them is the “correct” option. It really depends on if you’re looking at it logically or morally. The value you put on your ideals vs the amount of lives. There are a ton of factors here and it’s what made Archer an excellent antagonist and he is still one of my favorite characters in the series. I could really link the entire 21 minute fight as clips here since it’s all great stuff with the back and forth but I try to keep the clips minimal with the editorials. They should enhance the points as opposed to overtaking the whole thing. That said, if you want a good debate just look up Archer vs Shirou dub on Youtube and you’ll see theh whole thing there.

Archer did have another good point that is worth remembering as well. You need to know why you are saving people. People say that doing the right thing is its own reward. In a lot of ways what that saying also means is don’t expect a reward for doing so. A lot of times doing the wrong thing will be easier and doing the right thing will go unnoticed. There are times when doing the right thing will ultimately hurt you temporarily as well. He reminds Shirou that if he’s going to save people, it needs to be what he actually wants to do as opposed to doing it for someone else. It’s an important distinction and something to keep in mind. Doing the right thing is always what you should do, but you need to have a strong resolve as well to accept the consequences. Ultimately I do prefer Archer’s more heroic version from the 2006 version though despite all of this. Since all routes are technically the same character I suppose that means he was never super heroic but if you just saw that show you wouldn’t know any better. That may be worth an editorial some day as well comparing both Archer versions but that’s definitely for another day.

The Hero of Justice is a valid ideal and one that I agree with. Shirou wins this round.

Editorial

Positive Trope: An Even Stronger Villain Appears


One of the things I really enjoy about anime and manga is seeing how the arc after a big power up starts. This is something that can appear in any medium to be fair, but I feel like it is especially prevalent in anime/manga. The title’s a bit vague so let me get more specific on what I mean. This is the trope where the hero has just gone through a lot of great ordeals and unlocked a new level of power which was enough to stop the villain. Then the next arc starts and all of a sudden the hero is managing to get wrecked by the new opponent. That’s always one of the most hype kind of moments for me because it means the heroes are going to have to train up yet again. It’s particularly effective when the main character was considered to be absolutely crazy in terms of strength. I will be using examples from Yu Yu Hakusho’s Sensui arc, Dragon Ball Z’s Android Saga, Bleach’s Arrancar arc, and for a reverse look at a villain scenario, Fate Stay Night’s Unlimited Blade Works’ Grail War. So it goes without saying that there will be mild spoilers for each of these titles. The spoilers only encompass the beginnings of these arcs and for Fate, the beginning of the second act of the series. If you have not yet read/watched these titles I’d advise you to do so as they all are perfect examples of this. Other instances that are references through images include Luffy vs Kaido, (One Piece) Yami Yugi vs Rafael, (Yugioh) and Estarossa vs Meliodas. (Seven Deadly Sins)

This kind of plot can happen in a few different ways. The image I showed above is one of the great fakeouts from Hitman Reborn where after the heroes finally dealt with the Funeral Wreaths it turned out they were actually fighting some weak imposters. The real ones were significantly tougher. Medaka Box did this as well. It’s a slightly different variation from what I’m talking about since that affected the whole group and really a specific villain appearing. More like a group of them, but in a way that makes things even more dangerous for the heroes. The examples below are of a specific villain showing up.

First up, I’m going to start with Yu Yu Hakusho’s example as it’s a little different since it actually plays up the defeat with a bit of a mystery angle to it. So this takes place after Yusuke had just survived the Dark Tournament. He finally gained complete mastery over his spirit power and is feeling pretty invincible. He literally was able to defeat some people while tied up and unable to move so you get a feel of just how powerful he was. The Sensui arc starts with some mysterious teenagers showing up asking to pick a fight with Yusuke. Yusuke obliges them since he’s always ready for a good fight and then from there he vanishes which kicks off the arc. Somehow or another they were actually able to take Yusuke down . Part of what makes this really work is because Yusuke was built up as being pretty unstoppable. No demon could handle him so how could a bunch of human teenagers bring him down? It was a great moment for sure.

Next up we have the famous Goku vs Android 19 fight. I don’t even need to go into great detail here since everyone knows this example. Goku just took down the mighty Frieza with new Super Saiyan form. Goku’s also gotten stronger since then and handled Trunks with ease. Additionally Goku had some time to train before the Androids showed up. Yet, when they did, Goku was powerless to stop 19. He might as well not have even been fighting back because Android 19 gave him the work. To date this is one of my favorite fights in all of DBZ because of how 19 just stepped in and handled business. I like how nonchalant the whole thing was and 19 is heavily underrated. It’s easily one of the most shocking fights in the series because at this point Super Saiyan was still seen as invincible. It’s probably one of the earliest example I can think of with this trope appearing in full force and it was handled masterfully! I know people bring up valid points about how an Android should not have been able to be that powerful and I agree with that, but at the same time the scene was so hype I don’t even mind.

Bleach is no stranger to power creep so it makes sense that it would have a great example. It’s got quite a few to be honest but the best one I’d say is coming into the Arrancar arc. Ichigo just got done taking down a Captain and being acknowledged as one of the greatest Soul Reapers of all time. He takes out one of the random Arrancars and is feeling pretty good about himself. That’s when he is confronted by Grimmjow who turns out to be more than a match for the Hero. Adding insult to injury is the fact that Grimmjow is *only* ranked as number 6th among his group so he isn’t even the strongest. Ichigo is unable to do anything against Grimmjow and is completely crushed during this fight. This was a massive jump in power the likes of which we hadn’t seen. Not only did it establish Grimmjow as a serious threat (Who would go on to be my favorite character in the series) but it also showed that Ichigo and the other heroes were in deep trouble. They were definitely not ready to handle this.

Finally as mentioned lets look at a villain version of this example. It’s time for Gilgamesh vs Berserker. Part of why this one works is because Berserker is introduced as a servant so powerful that he could destroy the other 6 combined. At least in terms of pure mana output he beats the rest with ease. Now Fate does have a habit of throwing a little too much hype at everyone so they don’t live up to it (coughSaberalwayslosescough) and I’ve got an editorial coming up which will reference a fighter there but this is the whole lore behind Berserker. It’s very rare to see him be defeated in a straight fight. That’s all well and good until a new Servant decides to throw his hat in the ring. The King of Heroes, Gilgamesh. Want to talk about upping the stakes and hype? Gilgamesh is said to be the strongest Fate character in the whole Nasuverse. Granted, there are certain limitations to that quote. I believe it only applied to the base characters, once you reach into the spinoffs (Particularly the mobile game) there are some characters who could take him down. That being said, his abilities are in a world of their own. This fight shows that clear as day. It’s just about impossible for any hero to take him down because Gilgamesh has limitless Noble Phantasms. Additionally should anyone try to counter him with a world of their own, he has a weapon that perfectly nullifies it.

Gilgamesh’s only real weakness is that he tends to be overconfident so he doesn’t tend to try until he’s losing. That said, it makes his power that much more intimidating as he humiliates Berserker without even trying. Without a hostage Berserker would have done better although I don’t believe he would win. So there you have it, those are 4 examples of solid moments where this came into play. This definitely happens to villains quite a lot to be honest although in a slightly different context as it tends to happen within the same arc as opposed to the next one. The true leader tends to not show his hand until the main one is defeated. A good villain always waits until the perfect moment to strike.

I know what you’re thinking. No examples from Black Clover or Sword Art Online this time? I know I use those constantly, but I wouldn’t really say they’ve had an example like this. Certainly not Sword Art Online although Clover has some in the most recent arc from the manga. It definitely could have made the list but I figured I’d keep this editorial pretty short. Just a few examples and explaining why I enjoy this element so much. It really just a great way to take the show/manga to the next level. I always think the next villains should continue to get stronger and stronger. You will run into some issues if the power creep doesn’t stop after a while but the easiest way is to just have the strongest villain show up first to mess up the heroes and after that you have the weaker ones appear to let the heroes gradually improve to take them all down one after another. I feel like any good action series should throw this in at least once. It doesn’t have to be this directly, but in some way or another.

I’ve got more editorials like this coming up at some point with things I like to see in anime or character traits that I want in a hero. It’ll probably be a little while though as I try to balance this along with the reviews and fights on the site. Right now I’ve been doing 1 editorial a month at least. Stay tuned for July’s editorial as I talk about what makes for a good villain. Specifically I’ll be talking about what I like to see in a villain and not so much what I don’t want to see although I may reference those points. As with any character, there are a lot of factors in making a good villain. Just because I list around 10 traits or so, doesn’t mean a villain needs all of them. Of course if the villain does have them all, that’ll likely turn out pretty great for me.

Editorial

5 Ways Nintendo can fix the Switch Online Service


Nintendo has historically been known as the greatest video game company out there. Certainly they have a lot of great titles. The consistency and unchanging nature of their games is part of why they’re an easy pick for starting someone off on their first console. You know what to expect and the games are pretty high quality. That being said, they have their share of weaknesses though. A big one if their online services. For years Nintendo has lagged behind the other companies. At least they had the excuse that their online product as free though. Now you do have to pay for it so that makes the issue all that much worse. Let’s look at 5 things they can do to fix their online.

1. Make it Free

This is the most unlikely option of course but it is one that would solve a lot of the issues. The online would be terrible compared to the competitors but since you wouldn’t be paying for it you probably wouldn’t mind a whole lot. When things are free you tend to cut them some slack because you aren’t losing anything. Nintendo also doesn’t really need to charge for much. They opted not to go for dedicated servers anyway and their NES/SNES Online catalogue is basically just a bunch of emulators that anyone can download for free online. As such we know that the space for these is tiny and it doesn’t take a whole lot of power to have them online. Still let’s look at more realistic options.

2. Use dedicated servers

This is an easy one. If you boot up a Sony or Microsoft game right now and head online you can expect to have close to 0 lag in your matches. That’s because the connection isn’t peer to peer so even if one of your opponents has a terrible online system it won’t affect your match. Compare that to Nintendo where if one player has a bad connection it will mess it up for everyone. That’s pretty inexcusable. Lag completely ruins an online experience when it’s at its worse. Input Lag can be crazy to deal with and normal lag is just as bad when it comes to trying to nail a solid combo. Nintendo’s really got to shape up in this area because it is very noticeable at this point.

3. Time to add GameCube Online

This is a big one, the GameCube needs to be online. There are too many crazy amazing games for them to not be here. I’m guessing Nintendo wants to make us pay 60 bucks for an HD Remaster but that’s not the play here. Putting these games online would be hype and it’s not like Nintendo would have time to port all of them either way. Give us a few big ones like Mario Sunshine and Melee. If those are going to get remasters then give us Pokémon Colosseum and F Zero GX. Either way GameCube games are a huge jump from the level of quality and replay value of the current titles. The NES and SNES games are fun to be sure but they are also very short. Adding in GameCube will really be the ticket to get people buying the online pass. I dare say you could even skip N64 and go back to it later. GameCube is what the people want and trust me, it would definitely go a long ways to getting Nintendo’s online into the big leagues.

4. Time to get Leaderboards

This is a big one that all of the other consoles have. We need some kind of online rankings here. Whether it is through trophies, achievements, or something else it would be immensely helpful. It would also be an extra incentive to get online if that was the only way to see your position. It’s always fun to try and get everything so this would also greatly help the replay value of all the Switch games. It’s never too late to start and this would be a good addition. It’s also worth adding into individual games like Super Smash Bros should have had this at launch along with a few other online features. This editorial is more about general Nintendo Online though so I’m just giving it a small nod here. In general the Switch needs some kind of ranking system.

5. Miscellaneous free stuff

Finally, we just need more freebies. Xbox and PlayStation give you random AAA games for free at times, backgrounds, and other perks. When’s the last time you got anything for free from Nintendo? At best they give you times freebies like ARMS and Mario Tennis which you get to play for a little while and then it’s gone forever. That barely counts as a freebie because you can’t keep it. No sir, I want a freebie that I can actually keep for the long haul. Even small things like new layouts, Switch backgrounds, emblems, etc would go a long way. You need to give people something, by not giving any freebies it definitely makes us feel bad. It’s like Nintendo just isn’t looking out for us. It wouldn’t take very long at all. Nintendo’s track record with reward programs is pretty bad though, I still remember how bad Club Nintendo’s rewards were for a long time.

In short, Nintendo needs to shape up on their online offerings. It is totally within their ability to do so if they really apply themselves. Until they fix these things they will continue to get mocked by everyone all the time. Even recently Super Smash couldn’t make the cut for EVO in large part because the servers are so bad. Make no mistake, that’s absolutely the big reason why it was cut. It’s a shame because it would have been good for everyone to have seen the state it is in on the big screen. That would have been the best chance to get Nintendo to change something ASAP. That boat has sailed though.

Editorial

Why Black Clover is the best weekly manga/ongoing anime right now


It’s time to take a look at why Black Clover is the best weekly manga on the block and also why the anime is so amazing. Clover started out with humble beginnings. I only knew one person who was with it from the very start and recommended it quite highly. Initially there was a good amount of push back against the series as fans of the big titles of yesteryear feared its coming. Black Clover was mixing together a lot of ideas from older titles like Naruto and giving them a new spin. Make no mistake though, Black Clover had a great start right from the jump.

For the anime it was clear that it would be amazing from the first episode which looked spectacular and still holds up. The characters were engaging and the whole thing was interesting. The pacing and directing was on point so you were excited to see what would happen next. The world setup is excellent and the cast of characters have gotten better and better as time went on. The series isn’t literally perfect as it still loses out on best manga of all time to Megaman NT Warrior and then One Punch Man, but it is quickly cementing itself as one of the biggest titles. It’s certainly the best of the modern big 3 of Shounen Jump.

Quality rivalry

One area that really works out well in Black Clover is the rival dynamic between Yuno and Asta. Unlike some Shounen rivalries there aren’t any bitter feelings between the two. They both want to be the Wizard King and see each other as worthy rivals in this quest. Both of them continue to get more and more power ups as they rise through the charts to the point where I would consider both of them to be stronger than the Captains at this point in time. Given how powerful the latest villains are I see more power ups in the near future as well. It’s a great rivalry and both of them have gotten to save the other a few times at this point so it’s pretty balanced. For the record, I’d pick Asta to beat Yuno right now if they were to fight.

A Powerful Heroine

Next up, a strong point in the series is how Noelle has remained relevant. In a lot of these big action titles the heroine is quickly left in the dust when it comes to power levels. Sakura Haruno in Naruto was left in the dust as early as the Zabuza arc where she was unable to do anything against Haku while the other two put up pretty big fights. Her first real big fight wouldn’t be until her match-up with Sasori but even there she had a ton of help. Fiddletwix of Anime Madhouse recently wrote a great article depicting what I mean with this. Then in the final battle of the series with the trio fighting once more she did put up a reasonable fight but you never really got the feeling that she caught the others. I’ll give her some props regardless, but that’s 72 volumes in.

Then you have Nami in One Piece who isn’t really meant to be a fighter. That doesn’t take away from the fact that she is significantly weaker than Zoro and Luffy. Finally you have Bleach which is an amazing title but you have to admit that Orihime doesn’t fight much. You could make the case that Rukia should be counted in which case she does put up a better effort. Kubo gave her a fair shake as she had her own share of battles and even took down an Espada. That series is the closest to Clover in this regard. Clover still stands on its own though by giving Noelle quite a few super forms keeping her in league with Yuno and Asta. While she may not be quite as powerful as those two, she has handled her share of battles flawlessly and even saved Asta on occasion. In her Valkyrie armor we don’t yet know how powerful she is, but she can hold her own in a fight. Right now if she were to team up with Asta and Yuno she could do so proudly and fight as an equal.

Humor is on point

While you’re likely here for the fight scenes humor is also very important in any series. You want the humor to be on point so you can laugh along with the characters and I’m happy to report that Black Clover pulls this off as well. The “Haha” character is great and Asta is always the best character for comic relief scenes. I like the way he is drawn with stars for eyes in various scenes and a lot of his humor comes from the fact that he never lets things to get to him and can be a bit oblivious. He just wants to keep on training through everything and even uses these moves to get villains to submit to him. This is easily one of the funniest titles out there which works as a great contrast to the epic action scenes as well. I guess what I’m getting at here is that Black Clover is a very versatile series and one that succeeds at everything it does. It’s an easy 9/10 series.

Now, does Black Clover have any weaknesses? Sure, no series is completely perfect right? In the most literal sense nothing can ever be perfect because if you look hard enough everything has flaws. For Clover, I’m not a fan of quite a few of the Black Bulls. I don’t really care for Charmy, Gordon, Grey, or Finral. Finral has gotten a little better as the series has gone on, but the others haven’t really worked for me. That being said, all of the latest members of the Bulls have been quite solid and each new addition makes the team that much better. Maybe those other characters will rise up for me soon and even if they don’t we have enough great characters to hold things up rather well.

So if you haven’t started Black Clover yet then you really need to change that. Whether you pick up the manga or the anime you’re in for a blast. It’s quite impressive how far the series has come and I’m ready to say that it is one of the best Shounen Jump titles out there. The action scenes are incredible both in the manga in the anime. A standout for sure is the Yuna and Asta vs Licht battle which goes all out. The animators in the series aren’t afraid to go all out and be a bit experimental with the battles as well. While Asta vs Ladros is the only one that didn’t work for me as it got too experimental, it’s still cool how the series is able to change styles so readily. Different episodes look like they’re done by completely different studios which takes a lot of talent. At its best this is one of the best animated titles out there. Things can only continue to go up from here. I could keep on gushing about how awesome Black Clover is, but you get the idea. It’s a series that you have to experience first hand.

Editorial

Top 10 Pizza Places on Earth

It’s time to look at the top 10 pizza places on the planet! Pizza is my favorite food. It used to be Macaroni and Cheese for a long time, but a few years back I changed to Pizza and never looked back. There’s so much you can do with pizza and so many different ways to make it. I enjoy eating virtually all pizza but my least favorite style is brick oven as the sauce tends to come out rather chunky. I prefer frozen or classic hand tossed pizza where the sauce is more of a liquid and completely blended. Below are the 10 pizzas that take the concept of pizza to the next level and show the full potential of this item.

10. Cici’s Pizza

Cici’s Pizza is a buffet which is an amazing concept in itself. Who wouldn’t want to go and eat as much pizza as they could stuff their face with? Cici’s is every pizza person’s dream. What keeps them from being higher up is that their plain slice isn’t all that amazing. They make up for it with the topping varieties though. The Macaroni and Cheese pizza is out of this world and more places need to give this combo a whirl. Pasta and pizza were created to be mixed together and I could eat quite a lot of this flavor.

9. Tom’s Delicious Pizza

Tom’s pizza is a place I don’t have very often anymore but I used to go there all the time as a kid. This pizza is definitely hand tossed style with a thick crust. You get quite a lot of flavor here and to date they have my favorite spinach and garlic pizza. I just have not seen another place cook it in quite the same way. The garlic is grated quite nicely and there is a lot of spinach. I also enjoy their meats pizza which always hits the spot. This place has earned itself a spot in the top 10 and is consistently great.

8. Papa John’s Pizza

While they have never been able to catch Domino’s, Papa Johns is still a fantastic pizza. As with Tom’s this place uses quite a lot of bread to supplement the sauce and cheese. The crust is very unique and you can usually just pull it off to eat that way and then enjoy the rest of the pizza. The complementary garlic sauce is cool and they will usually let you substitute it for cheese sauce. This place has a lot of variety with the pizza so you never even have to get the same flavor twice.

7. Famiglia

Famiglia is an incredible pizza. This one is more of a thin base with a lot of cheese and sauce. The size of the slices is considerably smaller than the other ones so you will want to get a full pie here. The taste itself is top tier though and quite addictive. This is one place where I very rarely go for any toppings, but if you do want to experiment then I highly recommend their bbq chicken slice. The plain is my favorite tasting slice though, they add quite a bit of oil to really make the taste shine through.

6. V&T Pizza

From all of the pizza places on my top 10 I’ve been to this one the least amount of times. It’s more of a restaurant too which is rare because usually I don’t care for their style of pizza. I’ve been to a few restaurant type pizzas like Uno, Denino’s, and Fairway and the sauce is just incredibly chunky. Of course that’s where the all cheese pizza comes in handy where you tell them to hold the sauce but that wouldn’t knock you to top 10. V&T adds more oil to their pizza than I’ve ever seen but as a result it always comes out quite amazingly. It’s very soft and like a delicacy. I really need to come back here one of these days.

5. Pete’s Pizza

Pete’s Pizza is a fairly recent pizza place. It’s been around for a long time but I only started going here about a year or two ago. They easily have the best fresh Mozzerella pizza that I’ve ever had. The sauce and cheese is added on like a piece of artwork and the slices are thin and crispy without being too cracker esque. You have to eat a whole pizza pie because of how thin the slices are but it’s worth it. This is definitely what I would call a premium pizza and it leaves most other places in the dust. It’s the gate keeper of the top 5.

4. Pizza Hut

You can make a strong case for this pizza being higher in most cases except that the top 3 are so stacked. Pizza Hut has perfected fried pizza as well as the cheese stuffed crust. It’s still quite regrettable that I only have Pizza Hut express locations next to me. The pizza is small but packed with flavor and cheese. The pizza feels very automatic in the sense that it will always taste the same no matter how many times you eat it. The recipe must be quite tight at this point. There is less variety with the toppings but when you have pizza this good why would you need more options?

3. Domino’s Pizza

I eat Domino’s just about every Saturday so you can see how much I enjoy it. Their 7.99 3 topping large pizza deal is incredible. The pizza is absolutely top tier and you can get as many toppings as you can handle for a bit of an extra price. Typically I get steak, pepperoni, and cheddar. This is one of the only places that has steak and cheddar as actual toppings which is always surprising to me. They just make so much sense as toppings that you would expect more people to use them right? This is really what helps put Domino’s on the map here as such an amazing pizza place. Throw in the fact that they have an amazing brooklyn style option and the best sauce cups and you’ve got a true winner. While the next 2 pizza places do defeat Domino’s, this is the spot that I go to the most.

2. Koronet Pizza

Koronet Pizza was my favorite pizza place for an extremely long amount of time. It was only last year when it finally got surpassed. Koronet specializes in the jumbo slices which is a pizza that is about as long as having 2-3 slices in one shot. While the price has started to get a little ridiculous, the taste is amazing. I’ve never seen so much cheese at once and the crust has the best texture that I’ve seen. The only warning I would give is that you can choke on the cheese if you try to eat too much at a time so grab the fork they have at the front and cut up the cheese when it inevitably falls off of your pizza. Once you’ve done that then you are good to go for the best pizza experience you can imagine.

1. Oath Pizza

Oath is the ultimate pizza place. I couldn’t even imagine that such a place could exist. The pizza is super thin and the base appears to effectively be a crepe. The gimmick here is that you get unlimited toppings for no extra cost. I wonder how long they can really keep this up without going up in price but right now it’s a steal. I love going here and getting around 10 toppings each time. You can go higher then that with no problems either. Once you load up all the toppings it’s almost like eating a stew or lasagna but it’s all pizza. The blend of flavors is amazing and this is truly the ultimate pizza. I can’t imagine Oath ever losing the crown, it’s just too phenomenalC.

Honorary mentions to Prince Street Pizza, &Pizza, and Little Italy. Those 3 are also very solid but just couldn’t quite make the list this time. So when you’re looking for pizza places to try you should hit up one of these spots. You can’t really go wrong though, almost every pizza place is great in its own right. It’s all about knowing which flavors to order and then you’re all set.

Editorial

Why Robyn is the most underwhelming RWBY character


It’s time to look at a recent RWBY character who made her debut in Volume 7. Robyn Hill got a lot of attention right when she was first confirmed to be appearing and then when in the theme song the brief shots we had of her involved a fight with Tyrian. Clearly she was going to be the next big powerhouse in the series and ideally she could take over where Adam left off. We needed a new third party to spice things up. Heroes and Villains make for a good dynamic but what really helps to make both sides more exciting is to have someone who’s looking after their own interests. Robyn is certainly more of a hero than a villain, but she is quite willing to go against the heroes if it means she will be helping her people. Unfortunately the volume really didn’t do much with her and she ended up not coming close to meeting expectations. Lets look at some of the reasons as to why this was the case.

Fighting Ability

One of the big reasons for this is her lack of fighting ability. Robyn may have looked to be fighting evenly against Tyrian in the theme song, but that wasn’t the case in the episode. She had to team up with Clover and Qrow with both of them doing most of the work. Robyn’s crossbow did not look impressive as it deals minimal damage and the arrows are too slow so Tyrian can react to them all. She does get a good hit thanks to using Tyrian’s overconfidence against him, but in a straight fight it is clear that she is nowhere near Clover or Tyrian. To an extent she doesn’t have to be as strong as them but I would have liked for her to have been in the same ballpark. Instead she is relegated to the sidelines. It’s quite telling that in the second last episode she gets taken down in a quick hit and when she wakes up she is taken down in the plane crash once again while everyone else remained conscious. Robyn was constantly being outshined and you can’t have an effective third party is you’re this weak.

Ironwood exists

The biggest missed opportunity for Robyn is actually Ironwood’s continued existence. He ended up becoming the interesting third party of volume 7 as he slowly went down a dark path. This really made Robyn feel redundant because it’s rare to have 4 different factions running around. The only title I can think of that did this is Index with the Sorcerers, Aleister’s unit, Touma/Misaka’s group, The Level 0, and then Accelerator. You also have Anti Skill and Judgment running around if you count smaller groups. So what ended up happening here is that Robyn’s aligning more with the heroes. By volume 8 there’s a chance she will be a full hero as they all unite to stop Ironwood and possibly contend with Salem. Robyn could make for a fun hero, but I’d rather have her as more of an extremist like Adam. Her position is so close to his.

Adam Set the bar too high

Adam’s the greatest RWBY character so perhaps it was unfair to Robyn from the jump to even be compared to him. The odds of her being able to fill in his shoes were never that high from the start. It’s hard not to draw the same conclusions though. Adam wanted to help the faunus because there was such heavy discrimination against them and so he began the revolution. Thanks to Adam’s efforts the faunus now have a much better living situation even if he was taken down before true equality could be reached. Robyn is trying to help the people of Mantle as Atlas has turned their backs on them. Mantle is forced to live in pretty terrible conditions while the people of Atlas still enjoy a very wealthy lifestyle. Ironwood says that this is just temporary but Robyn is through waiting and so she has assembled her “Happy Huntresses” who raid Atlas supplies and try to help people. She certainly doesn’t mind attacking innocents if it’ll get the job done as she would have assaulted Clover’s squad if not for Penny intervening.

One difference from Adam is that she also tries to do this through the official channels. You may wonder how she is able to be known as a wanted vigilante while also running for a chair position. I’d attribute this to her social status. If Ironwood were to arrest her in public it would be a really bad look for him and tensions are already quite high in Atlas. There’s also the knowledge that if she doesn’t win legally then she’ll do whatever she can off the books. Robyn is certainly a lot more heroic than Adam, but she needed to have more of an active role. It all goes back to her lack of power. If she were stronger then she would have had more influence.

Robyn’s semblance is incredibly useful but she never takes advantage of it.

Robyn can detect if someone is telling the truth or not. That’s quite valuable in a story like this where everyone is constantly lying. It makes you wonder why there was any tension after Tyrian’s attack and framing of Penny. That whole framing job doesn’t work for a variety of reasons, but the biggest one is the fact that Robyn could use her ability to find out what really happened. Just ask Penny if she was responsible or not. Since Penny’s aura is enough to work as a conduit to the Maidens and recognized as a real person, the same logic would apply to her semblance. She can also question all of the other people in Ironwood’s faction and get the same response. It should diffuse tensions and it would have helped a lot with the plane situation and Clover although I think she made the right move there. Clover was the one being completely short sighted and crazy.

How can Robyn make a comeback in Volume 8?

Robyn’s character isn’t past the point of no return. Being underwhelming is completely different from being a bad character so there are still a lot of things she can do to rise back up. First off, she needs to get some more say in Volume 8. A big way to do this would be to snatch one of the relics. If she manages to use the schism between Cinder and Salem to snatch back a relic that would be huge. Particularly if she can take it for herself. Perhaps she can take Ironwood’s relic instead. Robyn just needs to grab someone or something and use that as leverage to help Mantle out. Thing is, there are not going to be a lot of opportunities for this in Volume 8 since Salem’s attack threatens the safety of everyone including her people.

A new weapon could also accomplish the same thing. Robyn already has a lot of confidence and some pretty good lines. The problem is that she is good at hitting people once they’re down, but isn’t winning any straight fights. A solid win against a big character would do her a lot of good. Perhaps taking down Blake or Neo would be a good start. Ironwood established a lot of credibility for himself by taking down Watts in Volume 7. Robyn needs to take down a similar figure in Volume 8 and that’ll be the way to really get her on the map.

A final way Robyn could do this would be to broker a deal with Salem to protect Mantle. She realizes that there is no way to save them until she joins Salem. Traitors are rarely popular with the main characters, but saving Mantle is really her only concern at this point. If she were to pull this off and save the day then it would make her a character to take note of. Right now Robyn has no real presence and that’s what she has to work on changing. These are some reasons why her character just felt wasted in Volume 7 and some ways for her to get better. The bottom line is that we need a reason to respect Robyn as a threat to the heroes or for the villains to respect her as a powerful ally. At the end of the day this means that she needs some kind of win and she’ll either need better fighting abilities or a really good plan to pull this off.

Robyn has already been saying all of the right things. She is quick to stand up for Mantle whether she is in a meeting with the executives or just talking to team RWBY. She doesn’t trust anyone a whole lot which is a good thing and I’ve already talked about her confidence. It’s a lot harder to change your personality than your skills so that’s a very promising sign. We just need her to go rogue and since most of her supporters are either murdered or injured at this point it should make it a lot easier for her to make a move without having to worry about anyone else being in trouble.

Editorial

Best NFL Players


With the NFL wrapping up it’s 100 year anniversary I figured it was a good time to take a look at who I believe was the best player to play the game in each position. You’ll notice that not all positions are on this list. I don’t have enough knowledge about the ones I’ve excluded like Linemen, Fullback, Punter, etc. Even if I did research now it would take too long to get an accurate picture of who the best was. The positions listed below are ones that I’m far more familiar with. Some I already knew before starting the editorial while other positions required more in depth searching.

Quarterback

When it comes to the best quarterback of all time that’s an easy pick to make. It’s Tony Romo. This quarterback is heavily underrated due to the Cowboys not winning a championship with him but team stats do not apply here. If you look at Romo’s stats he lit the field up whenever he was on the screen. To date he has the highest career QBR outside of active players and that’s one of the most impressive stats. Additionally Romo has a great arm so he could make even the more difficult of throws. His mobility was greatly reduced after sustaining multiple injuries over the years but this allowed him to improve his pocket passing further.

Running Back

Emmett Smith definitely has some competition for the best running back of all time but ultimately none of the competitors are able to match him. Smith was a powerful back who was known to consistently break tackles in the open field. His speed was also considerable even if it wasn’t quite what he was known for. He could turn up a gear or make a quick move to dodge a defender, but having the ability to break through an opponent was really his specialty. He obtained quite a lot of yards over the years and was a critical part of the 90s Cowboys success.

Wide Receiver

Aside from the quarterback position, the wide receiver is always the most enjoyable for me to watch. There have also been quite a number of incredible receivers over the years. Jerry, Randy, and T.O. are certainly my top 3. There can only be one though and I’m going with Randy here. His sheer athleticism was always very impressive and he could always fight for the ball. He had great seasons with the Vikings and a spectacular one with the Patriots as well. I haven’t seen another receiver who was quite so talented.

Tight End

As tempting as it is to pick Shannon Sharpe with his endless confidence and entertaining demeanor I’m going to have to go with Tony Gonzales here. He was always a consistently great tight end who lasted a while. Gonzales was always going to make the catch so the Chiefs could count on him for the first down. His size and physical route running also made it difficult for defenders to cover him. He had a great career.

Special Teams Returner

While most players aren’t officially listed as special team returners there are a few who were really just perfect for the role and that effectively became their position. Devin Hester was one of those guys and open field running was his specialty. Whether it was a kick or punt return he always had the potential to get the ball in the end zone. Eventually teams started kicking away from him. With 19 total return touchdowns he is far and away leading in that category. I highly doubt anyone will be able to pass him.

Cornerback

Deion Sanders was called Prime Time for good reason. He was a cornerback who made a lot of flashy plays and showed up in the big games. He was immensely talented and could even play other positions like wide receiver and he could return special teams. His real specialty was in the backfield covering receivers though. His ability to catch the football meant he could cover balls with the intent to catch them. At that point unless the QB threw a perfect pass it was a potential interception.

Kicker

An NFL kicker needs to be consistent and it’s been tough for teams to find one like that lately. It’s an incredibly difficult position as you may have to go into the game cold and still make the kick to win the game. With all of that pressure you have to have some pretty strong nerves. Dan Bailey was the closest you can get to a perfect kicker. While Bailey no longer has the record for highest field goal% thanks to an off year he had, he has gone back to being one of the most accurate kickers in history. As he is still playing he can still aim for the #1 spot in accuracy, but he already has that spot in the position with how he comes through in the clutch.

Middle Linebacker

Brian Urlacher was always a dangerous player on the field during his many seasons with the Bears. He’s the first middle linebacker I made sure to pay attention to because he was such a great player. The guy could easily pick off passes or go for sacks. It was always hard to tell exactly what he would do and just having that kind of pressure made it tough for the other team’s offense. I’m certainly not a big fan of the Bears but they have obtained quite a few great MLB’s in the past. I make the case that Brian was the best out of all of them.

Defensive End

This was probably the toughest position to pick. I was torn between Jared Allen, Demarcus Ware, and Michael Strahan. I compared their stats on Pro Football Reference and looked at some highlights. The main reason why Michael ultimately wins this one is because of his success in the playoffs. While he did have 2 more games to work with than Ware and several more than Allen, he easily led in sacks. He had close to 10 sacks in the postseason and those are the games where you have to show up. He also had the longest career out of the 3 and obtained the most sacks. Strahan was just an incredible DE and always made his presence felt.

Owner

Jerry Jones is easily the most well known owner. A lot of owners you never even hear about as they just don’t make the news or try to grab headlines. Jerry may be a controversial figure, but he’s never afraid to speak his piece about the Cowboys. You can count on him to address the media after every game and he definitely wants to win another Super Bowl. I can’t think of any owner with more energy and enthusiasm than Jerry.

So these are the top players of each position! The NFL’s 100th season was definitely a blast even if it didn’t go the way I had hoped it would. I look forward to seeing what the next century of Football brings us.

Editorial

Is a Hot Dog a sandwich?


One question that’s been floating around the world has been if the famous Hot Dog is a sandwich or not. Well, I lets look at this logically. I lot of the debate depends on your definition of a sandwich. My definition is that a sandwich is anything that is wrapped in between bread. The bread can be top and bottom like a classic grilled cheese or it can be enclosed like in a baguette sandwich. The goal is that something is there, if you’re just eating bread then it’s not an actual sandwich.

So that brings us to the famous Hot Dog. As you may have guessed from the intro, I would count this as a sandwich. The meat is in between the bread from top to bottom. I think one reason why people may not consider it to be a sandwich is depending where you get the hot dog it is one piece of bread that curves around, not two separate pieces of bread. If you buy a low quality hot dog then the bread will probably break and it’ll look like a normal sandwich. I make the case that in both situations it is still a sandwich. My rebuttal to the first scenario is that we already have sandwiches with only one piece of bread as opposed to two. I’m talking about the Italian Footlong.

Go to Fairway, Shoprite, Whole Foods, or Trader Joes and buy one of the long baguettes. Now instead of cutting it up into a lot of smaller ones just cut a slit into the bread and put in the meat. You’ve still got one piece of bread (albeit a large piece) but it is stuffed. Wouldn’t you call this a sandwich? I certainly would so this supports the case that you don’t need two pieces of bread to be a sandwich. The only qualifications is that you’ve got bread and you’ve got something inside of it while not being baked into it. If you churned your own dough with cheese into the mixture you’re just making cheesy bread and not a sandwich. So the distinction is that you’ve still got to have two separate items, the bread and the filling. That’s really it though. That’s all you need for a proper sandwich.

Whatever else you add to the Hot Dog after this point doesn’t take away its status as a sandwich or legitimize it. The instant you’ve put the meat into the bun you have just created a sandwich. This is a pretty short editorial next to my usual ones since there isn’t much more to be said about this, but I had to answer this age old question. It’s a topic that is brought up quite a bit in Yugioh Vrains so I needed to throw in my two cents. What do you guys think? Is a Hot Dog a sandwich or should it really not be lumped into that category and is a unique case?