Did you enjoy yesterday’s review? Here’s another packed post reviewing this past season’s anime!
Is it Wrong to Try to Pick up Girls in the Dungeon?
Dungeon ni Deai wo Motomeru no wa Machigatteiru Darou Ka
Medieval Otaku – 6/10
The main problem with Danmachi lies in that the essentially RPG fantasy setting is overused these days. Otherwise, one can’t deny that this is a fun fantasy romp. People complain of the fanservice, but I don’t think of it as that bad in comparison to other shows. The female characters are all quite interesting; though, Bell still strikes me as a bland harem lead. What more might I say? The animation was well done, the action engrossing, and the humor quite amusing—especially in regard to the many women in the hero’s life. A good show, but it still leaves something to be desired.
Food Wars: Shokugeki no Souma
Shokugeki no Souma
Kaze – 7/10
Shokugeki no Souma is something that does most everything right without trying to push into the boundaries of greatness which too commonly leads to failure. It’s about cooking food, and it takes that overly seriously, but barring that, it never tries to hook you with absurd plot twists or trying to out-do itself with every arc. There is a huge fan service problem, which will no doubt turn people away, but it does manage to maintain a good focus on the plot instead of devolving into a pointless harem ecchi. The cast is varied, each with their own quirks, though perhaps lacking some depth, but the voice cast is also stellar. It does suspense well because it is not about the protagonist simply being OP, but often about how to overcome a problem through wits and utilizing his strengths as a cook. Overall, Souma is an great watch if you aren’t expecting something amazing, but only if you can tolerate the occasional but extreme fan service.
Zeroe4 – 7/10
This season of Gintama has been so strange. From a Kuroko No Basuke parody, to the destruction of universal clock that controls time, and to an entire gender-flip arch caused by a fanatical alien sect with a powerful virus and a satellite weapon. This season has been crazy, but there isn’t any depth yet. In typical Gintama fashion, all the fun and madness will build into a very strong in depth look a characters history and story. The strength of the show is it’s ability to bridge these two seemingly opposite areas, and make the characters fun and also meaningful. The season just isn’t far enough along yet to do this. (Also note, Gintama can be a very dark and inappropriate show. You have been warned.)
My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU TOO!
Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigatteiru. Zoku
TWWK – 9/10
I’ve been championing Oregairu 2 all season long for what it’s been able to do. The first season was unexpectedly good, giving us characters with depth and writing that was both smart and humorous. The second season was unexpected, too, because it took the show to whole other level, delving into discussion about what makes relationships and friendships work and why they’re important. The series doesn’t take these questions lightly (much of the season is depressing in tone) – it assumes its audience is smart. And as the characters develop, often with awkwardness and unease, we revel in their journey, because it feels real and, in a word, “genuine.”
Kuroko’s Basketball 3rd Season
Kuroko no Basuke 3rd Season
Annalyn – 8.5/10
I don’t want to put a number on this anime. For psuedo-objectivity’s sake, I tried to give it 8/10, but Kurobas is dearer to my heart than any other sports anime. True, it’s not perfect. I wish we got to see more of Kuroko’s childhood friend, Ogiwara, or at least were introduced to him in earlier seasons, since he played a fairly important role in Kuroko’s development. And honestly, there are details about Kurobas that aren’t great, such as the overabundance of narration. Sometimes, I want to tell the writers, “I don’t need you to explain every emotion, everything that’s at stake, or every move.” Still, they can be subtle—for example, every now and then, the “camera” focuses on Kiyoshi’s taped-up knee, but they don’t waste words on the topic until the final episode. On a more positive note, I enjoyed the four episodes of background into Kuroko’s middle school days with the rest of the Generation of Miracles. It sealed my love for these six guys and provided the necessary emotional and mental foundation for the final game against Rakuzan. By the time we reached the game itself, I was more than ready. Anticipation has built for dozens upon dozens of episodes—What is he really like, both on and off the court? How in the world are Kuroko, Kagami, and the rest going to defeat him? The answers were fairly satisfying. This show may not be perfect, but it is exciting, and the plot across the 75 episodes pulls together very well. The characters, as usual, are this sports anime’s highlight… especially Kuroko. His loyalty, wisdom, competitiveness, and downright stubbornness pull not only his middle school teammates, but also his new high school peers, out of the depths of apathy and arrogance. I love this show.
Medieval Otaku – 4/10
How can I begin to describe this piece of mediocrity? Few anime succeed at having so little original about them. At the beginning, I found myself drawn in by the quote from St. Augustine, thinking that this show’s creators must be quite original considering that they’re familiar with St. Augustine’s Confessions. By the end of the series, they convinced me that they pulled the quotation from Brainy Quote. I’ve seen all these characters before. The plot is unoriginal. The dialogue is so hackneyed that I almost fell out of my chair with laughter. At least, the couple at the center of the action wasn’t annoying. Don’t waste your time with this sci-fi tale about time travel and parallel worlds.
Mikagura School Suite
Mikagura Gakuen Kumikyoku
stardf29 – 6/10
This is a show I enjoyed a fair amount despite all its flaws. Make no mistake, this show has a lot of problems. The plotlines get pretty messy and the more serious aspects get a bit too drowned out with the show just wanting to have fun, and some characters end up either woefully underdeveloped or just overall annoying (read: Shigure). Also, it’s pretty obvious that Dogakobo put more of their resources in their other show this season, Plastic Memories, because this show’s visuals leave a lot to be desired; the battle scenes in particular, which should be the highlight of the show, feel like they lack inspiration. And yet, for all of these problems, I cannot help but like this show. I might just be a sucker for this show’s overwhelmingly infectious optimism and energy. Probably the best part about this show is how Eruna, the main girl, gets along with the rest of the cast; she might be a crazy lesbian, but that is not all to her character as she turns out to just be an overall very friendly girl that supports and helps out everyone she cares for, both girls and guys. The camaraderie that forms among the cast of characters as a result is likely what kept me coming back to this show. It is not one I would readily recommend to others, though.
Nisekoi 2nd Season
Nisekoi: 2nd Season
Japesland – 7/10
Say what you will, I still don’t think that Shaft ruined Nisekoi. I’m not sure if this is as common a sentiment as my experience has led me to believe, but most people seem to bash the Nisekoi anime very consistently because of Shaft’s unorthodox animation style. Sure, the unique style probably doesn’t fit a harem/comedy as well as it does the Monogatari series or Madoka Magica, but it definitely sets the show apart from a sea of otherwise mediocre titles within the genre. However, I must add that I did finally catch up to the Nisekoi manga just recently (I’m not much of a manga reader) and I can sympathize with those who have been complaining since Nisekoi’s first season. The manga is, honestly, a strictly orthodox entry in the harem/comedy, albeit an entertaining one. Those who like that about Nisekoi have reason to be frustrated with Shaft’s unique adaptation. Regardless, though, as a solid 7/10, I heartily recommend it if you just want something fun to pass the time.
Kaze – 8/10
It is all too common when an anime with a promising or interesting plot synopsis ends up being terrible. Punch Line is the opposite of that. While I was first excited by the fact it was written by Koutarou Uchikoshi, the man who brought us Ever17, I have not been so turned off by a plot synopsis in a long time, with it having one of the worst slogans ever: “If he sees underwear, humanity will be destroyed!?” The first episode confirmed my fears, and I dropped it. But halfway through, I heard some very good things about it and picked it up again, and I’m glad I did. While it took a few episodes to get rolling, once it did, it was really rolling. It was truly an excellent piece of writing with many seemingly unrelated plot points all coming together to make a single, coherent story. The mystery and suspense were well done, and the minor details were most impressive, proving that the entirety was written with a clear plan from start to finish. While it has its flaws (but what doesn’t) and needless ecchi (my biggest complaint; Punch Line does itself a huge disservice with the underwear gag), it was without a doubt one of the best anime of the season.
Look forward to tomorrow’s finale of our spring 2015 review!