Fall Anime 2014 Review (Part 1/2)

The year is almost at an end, and with it, the fall anime season. As usual, we’ll be rating the anime we watched this past season along with a short review of our thoughts. Today will just be me, Kaze, but Japes will join me for the second half tomorrow. Overall, it was a really good season. It of course had its bad and good, but the great stuff were really great and the average anime were not too terrible, making the overall quality this season quite satisfying.

Amagi Brilliant Park

Amagi Brilliant Park
Amagi Brilliant Park

5/10

KyoAni finally stopped their adaptations of questionable amateur LN contest winners and returned to an actual LN series. Although, their trolling continues as Amagi is from the same author as FMP, which a large population of people are still hopeless waiting for another season of. Anyway, it was kind of a fun watch. It had a lot of boring parts, but it did manage to make me laugh at other times. Some of the characters greatly annoyed me with their rehashed jokes, so that was probably the biggest reason I didn’t give it a 6.

Japesland: I actually watched the first few episodes of this show because, well, KyoAni. Couldn’t do it, though. I’ve seen every single show of theirs up until this point, so I don’t know what stopped me this time, but I just couldn’t do it.

Cross Ange

Cross Ange: Tenshi to Ryuu no Rondo
Cross Ange: Rondo of Angels and Dragons

3/10

Cross Ange, aka the show I only watched because of its amazing voice cast, which of course includes Nana Mizuki. As a Sunrise original, I expected it to be pretty darn terrible, and it was pretty darn terrible. I’ll just say that an island of only females must make them sexually repressed or something. There was some pretty amusing (lazy) copy pasting going on with Gundam Seed, and it does have its occasional action, but its plot has barely moved at all and the revelations were pretty dumb on top of that. The only good thing is that the MC actually goes through some pretty dramatic changes in development from a spoiled, useless princess to a capable fighter.

Grisaia no Kajitsu

Grisaia no Kajitsu
The Fruit of Grisaia

4/10

I don’t really have anything new to say about this besides what I’ve been complaining about in my episodic posts. Simply put, this should never have been a single cour. Pretty much every problem can be traced back to trying to fit the entire visual novel into 13 episodes. It wasn’t really butchered so much as some people want to say, but it was definitely rushed pretty horribly. Since the sequel has been announced, I’ll note here that the sequels combined are maybe 1/4th, or even less, the length of the first VN, so everyone complaining about another rushed adaptation doesn’t know what they’re talking about (not that I have much expectation anyways).

Japesland: Also stopped early on this one as well mostly because I didn’t want to ruin the VN experience.

Gundam Build Fighters Try

Gundam Build Fighters Try
Gundam Build Fighters Try

Kaze – 5/10

My problem with the first season of build fighters was all the forced drama. From the beginning, it’s clear this is just a gunpla commercial to cater to gundam fans. It doesn’t need drama; it just needs good fight scenes. Season 2, unfortunately, continues the trend of shoe-horned drama at the cost of the battles. The characters are also far less interesting than season 1, and the female side is especially lacking an Aila. It’s also hilarious that they manage to ignore the one good plot point of “battling is a risk of destroying your gunpla,” where the MC’s gunpla is magically fixed after every battle despite sustaining massive damage. It can’t even be called a retcon when it still consistently happens to other characters’ gunpla. Some of the battles have been good; others not so much.

Log Horizon 2

Log Horizon 2
Log Horizon 2

5/10

Log Horizon 2 was unable to live up to its original season. The first problem was a switch in production studios which dropped the quality of animation. That alone I was fine with. The second problem is a problem with the source material in that it spent a long time on Akatsuki being depressed and taking far too long to develop her out of it. This was compounded by what, at least from my perception, stretching the limited source material to make it even longer and more boring. While there were still some good parts with raiding that were enjoyable, the first half of the second season simply spent far too much time describing the thoughts of a boring character.

Twintails ni Narimasu

Ore, Twintail ni Narimasu
Gonna be the Twintails!

5/10

I am so, so conflicted on this show. I guess I have to get it out of the way now that when it comes to female character design, I care most about the hair. This of course includes opinions on all the common hairstyles, and twintails rank highly on my list. So I have no choice but to admit this show pandered to me more than anything I’ve seen in years. That said, there were some really great things about it: it is a parody of super sentai and plays off a lot of tropes; it does a good job acknowledging how stupid its own premise is and just takes everything in stride. Unfortunately, the budget was all spent on the first episode which reeled me in hard, and the animation quality continued to decrease to the point where it became complete garbage…It was fun while it lasted, but it’s saddening that it took such a drastic plunge in quality near the end.

Psycho Pass 2

Psycho Pass 2
Psycho Pass 2

3/10

I wasn’t a fan of the first season, but I did think it was decent enough. When a sequel was announced, I was certain it would fall victim to the usual case of unplanned sequels made for milking the series, but I did not expect this. Psycho Pass 2 has proven itself to be a complete joke. Characters are depicted as incredibly dumb and incompetent, with the exception of Akane who is apparently the only person with common sense or any level of logic. The psychologist is also smart, in the sense that his sole purpose is narrating all of the antagonist’s plans. Speaking of the antagonist and the cases, everything seems intent on ignoring all the facts the first season established. Even the Sibyl system seems to be acting for the sole purpose of stirring up drama and plot. Finally, I can’t help but feel this is just an elaborate prank on Sakura Ayane, whose character is literally the antithesis of her real personality.

Ushiware

Ushinawareta Mirai wo Motomete
In Search of Lost Future

6/10

I guess I’m less biased since I haven’t read the VN for this, so I’m less likely to complain about how it butchered it. But it still sort of butchered it. In terms of storyboarding this kind of complex thing, I think it did a fairly good job. At the same time, it really gave far too many hints in the beginning and then just narrated the rest of the mystery close to the end, as if assuming viewers could not possibly understand any subtleties. The characters were developed okay on average, with the exception of Yui, who I think got the best development. Overall, it was a decent watch but falls under the category of another failed VN adaptation.

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Look forward tomorrow where Japes joins me in reviewing several more anime!

Kaze

Kaze is a graduate from the University of Tokyo who currently works on developing gene therapies for genetic diseases. He is a Nanatard since 2009 and mostly spends his time reading VNs and studying Japanese. Strangely enough, also a devout Christian.

2 thoughts on “Fall Anime 2014 Review (Part 1/2)

  1. Feeling not so bad now about dropping Amagi Brilliant Park, and about deciding to not rush through the first seasons of Log Horizon and Psycho-Pass to watch the second ones.

  2. Have not watched the other anime, but I totally agree for Log Horizon 2! IMO there is such a drastic drop in quality from season 1 to 2, and the story pace is so draggy now, plus they just included a filler Valentine’s Day episode… I guess it is still entertaining to watch but meh had high expectations for it… I found Amagi Brilliant Park overall quite a chill anime, nothing special, nothing bad, just nice haha

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