Here are my end-of-season notes / ramblings. My apologies for the text dump, but it's easier for you to skip if I contain it all in a single post. :-P
Ratings are on the color-coded three-point scale: I loved it
, I thought it mostly good, or at least okay
and why do I even bother
.Ushio & Tora
(continuing): The son of a priest accidentally releases an ancient demon, and they become allies...sort of. Japanese mythology, eldritch monsters, and fast pacing make this series a refreshing take on a classic pattern. This also has the best opening theme
of the season.Oremonogatari [my love story]
(finished): Gouda Takeo was a hulking giant, even as a middle-schooler. This made him popular with the sports clubs, but not so much with the girls; they were more interested in his best friend, Sunakawa. After Takeo rescues a girl (Yamato Rinko) from a subway groper, she ends up falling for him. But Takeo has failed at romance so many times, that he assumes Yamato is really interested in Sunakawa. This series is alternately funny (often stupidly funny) and heartwarming. Both the artwork and writing remind me a lot of Chihayafuru
.The Heroic Legend of Arslan
(first season finished): With a more serious tone, this would have been brilliant. Unfortunately, someone spilled anime all over this perfectly good war epic. Still, I'll definitely sign in for the second season, if any.GATE
(first season finished): The characterization isn't as strong as I might like, but the story and setting are bloody awesome.Shokugeki no Soma [Food Wars]
(finished): This is a pretty funny transposition of shounen battle mechanics into a cooking anime. Unfortunately, while it has many of the strengths of a good shounen series (action, sense of conflict) it also suffers from some of the weaknesses (too much exposition of
recipes, irregular pacing). Even if this gets another season, I think the gimmick has begun to wear a bit thin. Viewer advisory (PG-13): this series puts the porn back in food porn.Baby Steps
(finished(?)): The production staff appears to have gone to a lot of effort to make this a realistic tennis series, and it occasionally has moments of pure brilliance. The characterization is solid, and although I would have liked our hero to be a bit less unflappable, I suppose he wouldn't be much of a tennis player if he let pressure affect him very much. There is room for another season, but it doesn't really need one.Rokka: Braves of the Six Flowers
(first season finished): I was betting the seventh was Maura
. Well, whatever. Pretty entertaining for a fantasy/whodunit series, and although the writing is a bit obvious in trying to manipulate the audience's reactions (also see: SAO), there are flashes of good characterization. The ending was nonsense, but I might be inclined to tolerance if I get a second season.Charlotte
(finished): What if superpowers were a childhood disease, that ended with adolesence? This series starts out well, but later on has a couple of bad episodes which almost ruin it. It reminds me somewhat of Angel Beats
, which I wish I had rewatched instead.
Writing sins (SPOILERY!
- Resurrecting a dead character
- Having the protagonist go completely out of character during his breakdown
- Never clarifying the antagonist's objectives (so what were these evil scientists *doing* with all this research? Can't you at least give me a supervillain or two?)
- Introducing a new antagonist (the "foreign terrorists") at the eleventh hour, with almost no foreshadowing
- Dumping the new antagonist when the plot point was achieved
- Pretending it is possible to blackmail someone out of using time-travel
Well, at least the ending wasn't a complete loss.Snow White with the Red Hair
(finished): Completely unrelated to the fairytale. This is the story of a romance between a red-haired herbalist/apothecary, and the second prince of a kingdom. This is a charming shoujo series, with gorgeous music, but it flips into cliche plot structures a little too easily, and I can't help but think that The World is Still Beautiful
did this sort of thing better.World Trigger
(continuing): Production quality and pacing issues aside, this is still managing to hold my interest.Chitose Get You
(finished from backlog): Elementary-school comedy in three-minute episodes. Cute.Seiyuu's Life
(dropped): This slice-of-life series centering on voice actresses wasn't too bad, but coming so close on the heels of Shirobako
, it didn't really hold my attention.Gangsta
(finished): This started out solid, but by the end, it felt too rushed, and I was losing track of who was who, and why they were doing what. That last episode wasn't an ending. It didn't even qualify as a cliffhanger, it simply...stopped. Bad planning, that...maybe related to the studio going bankrupt.Naruto
(continuing...and continuing...): Yo dawg I heard you like filler so I put some backstory in your filler so you could reminisce while you zzzzz.
How long has the final(?) battle been going on? Three seasons? Four? There is yet no end in sight. Bizarrely, the filler episodes are often better than the main story.
Do you remember that time when Naruto was awesome*? That was over 250 episodes ago
. Forget about a little light trimming, this needs to be edited with a machete.
*Well, subjectively speaking. If you want to say "Naruto was never awesome", I won't argue the point. I don't care anymore.