Little Witch Academia is an excellent short movie from the Anime Mirai 2013 project. In the case of Little Witch Academia, young animators benefited from the tutelage of former Gainax members now with Studio Trigger. The resulting project is a charming well-animated story reminiscent of the underrated Mahou Shoujo Tai Alice1 (2004-2005). I give Little Witch Academia a solid recommendation and look forward to more great things from Studio Trigger. I'm also curious if the rest of the Anime Mirai efforts are as good. With titles such as Death Billiards, how can they not be?
All right, so why wasn't Little Witch Academia the best anime I watched all week? Well, it so happens I re-watched Top wo Nerae and Top wo Nerae 22 the same week. Considering I hold Top wo Nerae in such high regard, it's surprising how little I've written about it in over 11 years of anime blogging. (Similarly, there's basically no mention of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann on this site either, although in Gurren Lagann's case, it was because it aired during a period when the only anime that I was watching were Macross 7 and Tokimeki Memorial ~Only Love~.)
You know where I'm going with this, right? Some of the individuals responsible for Little Witch Academia were involved with Top wo Nerae 2 (and Gurren Lagann) while they were with Gainax, so the pedigree is certainly there. Little Witch Academia turning out so well will surely add fuel to fellow former-Gainax fanboy flames. (Although I still have hope for post-diaspora, current-Gainax, Gainax actual.)
Speaking of Gurren Lagann, pre-orders for the Region A complete box set of Blu-ray discs are now available for an eye-opening $550 or so. For that kind of money, I certainly hope they are not upscales only marginally better than the DVDs. I'm not certain, but I seem to recall hearing that neither Gurren Lagann nor Top wo Nerae 2 were produced in full HD resolutions (because they were made in that unfortunate transitional period after traditional cells but before full HD digital work). If true, this at least explains why the Blu-rips of Top wo Nerae 2 are only small improvements over my R1 DVDs at best. Still, I waited a long time for Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann Blu-rays before ultimately purchasing the R1 DVDs last year or so. Now that Blu-rays are nearly upon us, I'm tempted to repurchase them—just not five-hundred-fifty-dollars tempted.
Note 1: Officially known as The Adventures of Tweeny Witches in English.
Note 2: Also called GunBuster and Diebuster, respectively, but Diebuster is officially titled GunBuster 2 on the R1 DVDs because people are jackasses.