Saturday, August 24, 2013

Fun Stuff: Summer Season Impressions

Now that the summer season is in full swing, it's about time for me to take a look at the shows I've been watching and gather early impressions. Overall, I've been very pleased with my personal selections, as well as the variety of shows available this season overall. There's a little something for everyone this time around, and since I enjoy several different genres, I've been as happy as a clam over the diverse selection. Here's what I think thus far:

Attack on Titan (second half)

Now that Eren's big secret has come out, I've been excited to move into all the tactics and military strategy that goes along with the shift in focus to the Survey Corps. Since this cuts back on the shock-value action somewhat, there's more emphasis on the script itself, which is filled with plenty of insight and drool-worthy ideas on human nature (which is just like fanservice for my English major heart). I'm also loving the new characters we've met in the Survey Corps, and luckily several of my preferred characters from earlier in the season have joined along with Eren. As for Eren himself, he's still got a pretty sizable stick up his ass, but being around superior bad asses like Levi has helped things a bit, so I'm looking forward to further development from him as well.

Cons? I don't like the new opener as much as the first (although the ending theme is SICK), and the violence still grosses my squeamish self out. And the moe titans are kinda weird. Other than that, this show is completely gelling with me.


This is the one I have been dying for, and it has not disappointed in the slightest. Competition! Buff torsos! Bishounens! A very likable supporting female character! Rampant potential for slash pairings, but no blatant BL for the whiners! Opening and closing theme accompanied by breathtakingly beautiful animation! The most well-animated water scenes mine eyes have ever seen! KyoAni has gorgeous visuals (in more ways than one), and the characters are about the most darling sexy guys on the planet. I want to hug all of them and have them entertain me with their antics for the next few seasons. Since that's not going to happen, of course, I'm looking forward to figuring out what's making Rin struggle to reconnect with his old swim club friends after returning from Australia.

Cons? Can't think of any. This show was designed for girls like me, so I'm eating it up.

Blood Lad

This is a show I don't know what to make of half the time, but I'm still enjoying it nonetheless. I think what I'm liking most is the idea of the demon world with its territorial leaders, which is actually more interesting in itself than the overarching plot of resurrecting Fuyumi as a human. Fuyumi herself has been a bit vapid thus far and is overshadowed by the supporting female character Bell, who has a lot more character to her than she does. Staz is pretty enjoyable as a male lead, on the other hand, because he is ONE OF US (a huge otaku!) The last episode teased at Staz's crazy family life, and I'm eager to finally meet his brother.

Cons? Fuyumi has thus far simply played the role of Generic Heroine with Big Boobs. I'm hoping she'll develop a more interesting role in the plot rather than letting Staz and co take on the meat of the series.

Gatchaman Crowds

Other than Free, this show has been my favorite this season (plus Daisuke Namikawa voices Jou, which always seals the deal with me). The hero system reminds me of one of my favorite titles Tiger & Bunny, and I'm sensing a lot of delicious insights into issues of morality and what makes up notions of good and evil as the plot thickens. Will the world turn to heroes? Or the widespread online community that tries to "update" the world with good deeds? Will the general population even learn that the Gatchaman order actually exists? There's a lot the show hasn't made clear yet, and I'm eagerly waiting for answers!

Cons? I'm still not completely sure what's up with the Gatchaman organization and selection process or what the deal with MESS is, but I'm sure the show will get around to these little details soon.

Kamisama no inai Nichiyoubi

Aside from the fact that I'm pissed that the character voiced by a certain favorite seiyuu of mine already kicked the bucket, I'm really enjoying this show. The premise of what would happen if God abandoned both the living and the dead is fascinating, and thus far the execution of the idea has been brilliant. Ai is a likable, genuine heroine, and though I'm not sure why yet, she reminds me a lot of CLAMP's Sakura Kinomoto. The animation quality, particularly if you can snag it in HD, is also quite beautiful. All in all, I'm just excited for a fresh idea within the fantasy genre, and I'm interested to see where the show takes it.

Cons? They killed off my favorite seiyuu! He even said the line "Julie is my best friend," which made my fangirl heart squeal! And since I don't like it when characters who have genuinely died come back to life, I can't even allow myself to hope for it!


I'm am so thankful for this show. After the first season, I really did not like Tsubasa Hanekawa, and I was a bit disappointed that the next season who have her as the focus character. I couldn't even put my finger on why I didn't like her, which made me really frustrated since I enjoyed everything else about Bakemonogatari.And then the Monogatari Second Series started, and everything started falling into place. Hanekawa didn't really like or fully accept herself, and she simply allowed everything to happen around her without fighting or questioning it. In the third episode, Senjougahara points all of this out to Hanekawa, and she at last begins to examine herself seriously, leading her to become a heroine very much worthy of my respect. The script writing in this show is still a gem, naturally. If you love language, do yourself a favor and watch it.

Cons?It does take a bit of effort to get the most out of this show- i.e., pausing to read the fast flashing text, internal thoughts, etc. Normally, I wouldn't mind putting forth the effort, but since I'm working full time now, I kinda just want to pass out on the couch and watch without having to do anything else. Lazy, I know!

Uchouten Kazoku

I wasn't really sure what to expect out of this show, so I didn't approach it with anything particular in mind in terms of quality. All the same, it really ended up surprising me with how well done it was. The concept of shape-shifting tanuki and tengu living among humans was a bit odd at first, but I ended up falling in love with the characters, particularly the wily and slightly amoral Benten, and I found the script to also be quite good all around. It's more of a show for dialog than action though, and the comedic elements are a bit more sophisticated than your average series. It's definitely a great show if you're an older anime viewer and are simply looking for a straightforwardly interesting concept to chew on.

Cons? The pacing can be a bit slow at times, but then again, I'm usually watching in my post-work stupor. The idea of tanuki hotpot is also increasingly disturbing if you really THINK about the fact that Benten ATE Yasaburou's father. As part of a stupid tradition. Not cool!


So glad I'm finally back to watching some comedies this season! Watamote is hysterical! Kuroki is also ONE OF US, a huge otaku with social interaction issues that time and time again put her in ridiculous situations. While never saying a word in class, Kuroki likes to fantasize about yandere boys and otome games while at the same time judging the popular girls in her class for putting on airs. It's a really funny title, but is a bit sad at times when Kuroki's issues put her in humiliating situations that make it even harder to come out of her shell. We're all rooting for her, though, so she's not alone as she thinks!

Cons? The show is great with its comedy, but a few scenes have genuinely made me want to cry for Kuroki. It hits close to home sometimes, which detracts a bit from the funny elements, although IMO, it still makes it a great show.
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