Keijo!!!!!!!! is not just a better sports anime than Shakunetsu no Takkyu Musume (Scorching Ping Pong Girls), it's a better show overall. This is probably contrary to conventional expectations from prior to the start of the autumn 2016 season, but I think most viewers now accept that Keijo!!!!!!!! turned out to be much better than anyone reasonably hoped before the season began.(more…)
Dated 6 July 2016: Sansha Sanyou: I don't think that bit about three girls each having the same kanji (葉) in their names ever comes up
I sort of like the idea of "Cute Girls Doing Cute Things" anime, but I have such a low success rate with them that I tend to avoid such shows as a matter of general principle. I'll check in every once in a while to see if my impressions of them has changed, but I usually end up dropping these shows relatively quick. This was the case with the well regarded Kiniro Mosaic despite Karen being an appealing nutjob, and was the case with Girlfriend (Kari) despite, um, the Tange Sakura character being an appealing nutjob. It's also why I've never started Yuyushiki and why I never watched Gochūmon wa Usagi Desu ka? (Is the Order a Rabbit?) even though I'm intrigued by the one who apparently carries a pistol for some reason I don't understand.(more…)
I've been fairly hostile towards Haifuri (High School Fleet) all season long. The problem is that, as military-otaku bait, it's completely ate up. It sort of tries to cater to that crowd, but it goes about it in a half-assed sort of way. Unfortunately, the season-long plot, mystery, and ongoing crisis are serious enough that I feel Haifuri needed to get its paramilitary parts right.(more…)
I'd like to apologize for spoiling the twist and thus ruining the first episode of Gakkou Gurashi! (School-Live!) for you. I hadn't done it yet, but I've done it now, so if you didn't know already...sorry. That said, it's only a spoiler for the first episode. I learned from a season preview that this anime is actually a zombie survival story rather than a school life cute-girls-doing-cute-things morass, but I don't feel knowing this ruined the show for me. What did ruin the show for me was Yuki. I managed eight episodes before dropping School-Live! in disgust. Look, it is not cute for a high school senior to talk and act like a five-year-old child.
I don't care that Yuki is supposed to be emotionally broken by the horrors she has witnessed. There are still entirely too many filler moments that serve no purpose other than to goose anime fans who enjoy the infantilization of women. See, there are flashbacks of pre-apocalypse Yuki, and she's just as fucked up there, so I presume this is her natural state. In any case, I've elected to read the manga instead of continuing to watch the anime. I simply can't identify enough enjoyable aspects unique to the anime to justify following it any longer. (The OP is sort of catchy.) Unless the manga and the anime are dramatically different, I think this is the way to go.
I've already dropped Gugure! Kokkuri-san! and Girlfriend (Kari). Neither show was particularly bad, but there are plenty of other shows airing this season that are more interesting. Kokkuri is amusing enough, I suppose, but it didn't resonate with me. I can't imagine following its antics week after week. I suspect most people will be able to determine whether or not it will appeal to them simply from a synopsis alone.
Girlfriend (Kari), on the other hand, is one of those shows that appears "objectively terrible" from the description—one that is only worth watching for its massive crush of seiyuu in its huge cast. It turns out Girlfriend (Kari) (or Girl Friend BETA, whatever), is inoffensive and sort of cute in a banal way that probably appeals a lot more to people who really enjoy "Cute Girls Doing Cute Things" than I do. As it is, I still find it rather dull and I'm too uninterested to continue watching. I'm going to need something more than simply Sakura Tange talking all fucked up each week to keep me engaged.
I knew in advance that I was going to drop most of these shows, but most of them are at least worth a look. From certain perspectives, a lot of these shows are actually quite good.
The best show I stopped watching is Servant x Service which has some real appeal, but I dropped it because I didn't like Lucy. Most of the other characters are fine, though. It sort of has the same vibe as WORKING!! which I disliked. Servant x Service doesn't rub me the wrong way like WORKING!! did, but I didn't see a point in watching more Servant x Service when there are so many better shows to watch this season.
Kiniro Mosaic (Golden Mosaic) is cute. Aggressively cute. Obnoxiously cute. Well, yeah; it's a "cute girls doing cute things" show. (As mentioned previously, I'm not a big fan of those.) That's really all the show seems to have going for it. Still, I was much more impressed with the episodes I did watch than I was with the manga.
Kitakubu Katsudou Kiroku (Chronicles of the Going Home Club) is another "cute girls doing cute things" show. KKK appealed to me even less than Kiniro Mosaic because most of its humor seemed to be based on super-overblown reactions to medium-outrageous antics.
Gen'ei o Kakeru Taiyou: Il Sole Penetra le Illusioni (Day Break Illusion) isn't exactly good, but it's also not as bad as its most dismissive critics claim. Yes, it does seem designed to cash in on the popularity of Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica, but that doesn't necessarily make it a bad show. That said, I did not find it particularly interesting, and was only watching to see if anyone got her head bitten off.
Chou Jigen Game Neptume The Animation (Hyperdimension Neptunia: The Animation) also did not strike me as a necessarily bad show, but I sensed I wouldn't be able to appreciate it without being familiar with the game first. Indeed, its most enthusiastic fans appear to be veterans of the video game. I guess that means it's a good adaptation.
If you watched the first High School DxD then you know what to expect from High School DxD NEW. It's pretty much the same deal again, but that just wasn't enough this season.
I gave Futari wa Milky Holmes (We are Milky Holmes) a couple episodes to turn itself into first-season Tantei Opera Milky Holmes, but it didn't happen so I dropped it.
Now we're in the dregs. Despite its huge popularity and strong start, Shingeki no Kyojin (Attack on Titan) really took a dive summer 2013. It doesn't help that it started off with a clip show (episode "13.5"). Notably, it was the worst clip show I have ever seen. I'm not opposed to recaps as a matter of principle. Just as I never skip OPs and EDs, I also never skip clip shows. However, the Shingeki no Kyojin recap episode was so lackluster that I have to conclude nobody responsible for it had the slightest interest in it. Then the week after, episode 14 proved so disengaging that I finally gave up on the series entirely. (This was also partially inspired by my declining opinion of the ongoing manga. I've nothing to look forward to except [SPOILERS] with a bow.) I'm forced to conclude the two episodes of Attack on Titan that I watched summer 2013 were WORSE THAN COSPRAYERS. Congratulations.
All of the shows I just mentioned are watchable on some level and arguably have positive aspects going for them. However, the summer 2013 season is too good on a whole to waste time with shows that are so flawed or otherwise uninspiring.
I'm wondering if not being being a fan of CGDGT [sic] would still permit one to watch it purely as a connoisseur of anime technicalities. That transparent head was a devastating blow to SHAFT, I thought. It wasn't the most impressive technical achievement, of course, just most trollsome. Aside of that, I am very much puzzled just how they did all the various camera angles. It's the perfect merge of 3D techniques and the 2D aesthetics that I wanted since, dunno, before I saw the chandelier in Disney's Beauty and The Beast.
Not having seen Yuyushiki, I can't comment on its technical merits. However, I don't think I personally would be more likely to enjoy the show for its animation quality alone unless it is absolutely stellar. Although I find animation quality to be a notable factor in my enjoyment of anime, I'm by no means a connoisseur of animation itself or an obsessive fan of animators as individuals (as an increasing number of anime fans now seem to be). I'm still more likely to be swayed by seiyuu or a show's music. It kind of makes me wonder if there are anime fans out there who obsess over such-and-such sound guys and the apparently otherwise largely overlooked work they do? Even in Hollywood sound editing and sound mixing appear to be dark arts. Note, for example, The Matrix beating out The Phantom Menace for the Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing at the 72nd Academy Awards. Were those Oscars appropriately awarded, or did the voters just choose the movie they liked better without regard to the technical and artistic merits involved? It's a mystery to me, and quite a digression from the original Cute Girls Doing Cute Things subject I started out with, to be sure, but still a topic that I'm increasingly curious about.
Of the shows I watched spring 2013, the first one to end was the last one I started: Aiura.1 I don't actually have much to say about Aiura because it is such a short show. Practically everything I could say about it I've said before: Crabs. Steve Jobs. Cancer. iUra. Gams. So many gams. Saki is the Best Girl. Are girls named Saki more like to be a show's Best Girl? Sure seems that way. But what I suppose I can do is use Aiura to talk about a show I didn't watch—one that everyone appears to adore: Yuyushiki.
That's right. I didn't watch Yuyushiki at all and know basically nothing about it except for what people have gushed in IRC or on the Twitter. I think there might be heavily implied lesbianism? I know there are girls in it who close their eyes a lot as they let their jaws hang slack—sort of like a reptile's smile. I haven't watched it because I'm not actually a big fan of the Cute Girls Doing Cute Things sub-genre. I struggled to watch K-On! and still dropped it at episode four of the first season.2 I liked Aiura, but its short episode length probably helped quite a bit. For me to enjoy a Cure Girls Doing Cute Things show, the primary draw needs to be its humor or some other gimmick. E.g., Azumanga Daioh, Ichigo Mashimaro, and Natsuiro Kiseki. I never finished Lucky☆Star, though. It's not that I feel it's a "cancer killing anime" or anything like that. I'd just rather see the characters doing something more interesting. Maybe operating tanks.
Note 1: Technically Straight Title Robot Anime ended first, but that was a carryover from winter 2013.