Spring 2018 Thoughts

With the Spring 2018 season now behind us, the staff at Beneath the Tangles decided to take a look back at the season and I asked them the following questions: What was the biggest surprise of the Spring 2018 season? What was your favorite series?

The team’s answers are below the fold:


MDMRN

What was the biggest surprise of the season for you?

Crossing Time (Fumikiri Jikan) surprised me every episode with it’s wild inconsistency. Some episodes were well crafted vignettes about people meeting at a railway cross with humor and heart. Some were about lustful teen boys ogling his classmate and imaging her in his mind as this hypersexual creature. And some included siblings talking flirty via text messages. As I said, wildly inconsistent. I never could decide if I liked it or not and, in the end despite my positive first impressions, I would not recommend it to others. I do a more thorough review on my personal website hereCrossing Time (Fumikiri Jikan) can be legally streamed at Crunchyroll.

What was your favorite series of the Spring 2018 season?

Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku (Wotaku ni Koi wa Muzukashii) was hands down my favorite series of the season. It was a show with heart about dating in the real world when you are trying to be a little coy with everyone else about your geeky passions, especially in the workplace. I mean, I’m not (says the man with Funko POPs and a shelf of video game toys in his office), but I get others being that way in a professional setting. It showed adult relationships that were focused on the interpersonal connections more than trying to be overtly sexual. It was…cute. It touched on topics that some of our readers may not like or feel as comfortable with (ex. BL manga), but on the whole it was a well crafted show with more realistic adult couples than I’ve seen in a while. Wotakoi: Love is Hard for an Otaku can be streamed legally via Amazon Prime.


NegativePrimes

2018-06-29-232900_1366x768_scrot
Anzu and the homeless community in Hinamatsuri

What was the biggest surprise of the season for you?

Man, there were a lot of surprises to choose from! I ended up liking Megalobox more than I thought I would; while despite my early endorsement of Money Pitch I quickly got bored of it. If I had to choose just one, however, it would be the dark horse series, Hinamatsuri. I really didn’t have any expectations going into it—don’t even remembered why I started watching, as I didn’t know anything about it. And… it was

Amazing.

To this day, I have trouble describing to people what it’s about. “Um, it’s a heartwarming story about a Japanese mafia man who collects vases, and a telekinetic girl who drops on his head. She blackmails him into taking care of her, then they bond over mass murder…” I’ve never seen anything quite like it. But given how popular it proved to be, I guarantee we will!

Hinamatsuri can be streamed legally on Crunchyroll, and you literally have nothing better to do with your time right now

2018-06-29-232838_1366x768_scrot
Anzu learns the hard way that you have to right your wrongs

What was your favorite series of the Spring 2018 season?

Three guesses and the first two don’t count. Hinamatsuri! Though Wotakoi and Golden Kamuy also vied for top place in my affections, the former didn’t fill its potential as much as it could have (thought it was quite good), and the latter at times got rather gratuitously gory. (Says the guy who watched all of Elfen Lied.)

Hinamatsuri consistently struck the right balance between humor, heartwarming, and heart-breaking—sometimes  all three within the space of a minute or two. The series really kicked it up a notch in episode 3, when Anzu joined the homeless community and the show spent a third of the season exploring the ins and outs of the transients’ lives. The homeless community was depicted with a sensitivity and insight I’ve not seen elsewhere, which could largely be because you hardly see homeless people treated much in visual media at all, at least comparatively. While all three of the main girls—Hina, Anzu, and Hitomi—show character growth through the series, Anzu shows the most even if Hina is ostensibly the main character (along with Nitta). Hina and Hitomi end up largely serving as foils to her, with Hina being far more immature (“Feed me.”) and Hitomi getting rich only to contrast with Anzu’s poverty.

The only complaint I have is that the season ending really didn’t feel like an ending, and that problem will be solved if they come out with Season 2!

If you watch Hinamatsuri legally on Crunchyroll, it will make you a better person, stronger, and more beautiful. Hey, one out of three ain’t bad!


Samuru

 

Screenshot 2018-06-26 20.26.45.png

What was the biggest surprise of the season for you?

Coming into this season, I noticed an anime that had a cool cover of a boxer but that was it. It had about 10% of my interest, but after watching the first episode, I was hooked! I am not a fan of sports anime nor sports in general, but Megalobox was the biggest surprise for me. It has an old 80s anime style, but with modern enhancements. Musically, I enjoyed its hip-hop/lo-fi beats spread out especially in the first few episodes and the characters were easily likable. I had to research about it being the 50th anniversary of the original boxing anime, Ashita No Joe. If you’ve watched any of that anime, you will see similar characters borrowed from it in Megalobox. I felt inspired and found myself cheering for Joe to be the champion of Megalonia, the biggest boxing championship of the show.

Megalobox can be streamed via Crunchyroll.

Screenshot 2018-06-20 22.37.19.png

What was your favorite series of the Spring 2018 season?

My Hero Academia has continued to provide a very entertaining new season every time one is released. The stakes are higher and more deadly I felt this time, and more was revealed about the backstory of All-Might and the villains. It did take some time to get there, but when it did I became more excited to watch the 4th season. This is just one of those anime that hasn’t let me down yet, so I will continue to watch it until it ends. In fact, I think I’m going to go spoil it for myself and read the manga…

My Hero Academia can be streamed via Crunchyroll.


TWWK

What was the biggest surprise of the season for you?

I have no background with the Steins;gate visual novels, so Steins;gate 0 started out as an aberration for me, something unexpected, something unwanted even, especially since I hold the original series in such high regard. Still, I’m the type to be open to remakes, retreads, and sequels, thought I enter them with low expectations. That’s what I did with Steins;gate 0—I was open but not expecting much. For sure, the series so far isn’t on par with its predecessor, but it’s still been REALLY good. It perhaps dwells in nostalgia a little too much instead of moving forward (ironic since the series is about not being able to move forward), but as with the original, it is slowly developing into a compelling and powerful story, most punctuated this season by an episode that goes down as one of my all-time favorites across all anime (I won’t spoil it, but if you’ve seen the new season, you should know which one—it very well should have brought you near tears like it did me). The high points have been high, the low points have been alright, and the series has thus far been really solid.

Jump the world line and check out Steins;gate 0 on Crunchyroll.

What was your favorite series of the Spring 2018 season?

Staff was talking recently about how good this season has been. It’s been so good, in fact, that I ran out of time and had to drop one of the best series (THE best?) from the season in Megalo Box. Others that were really good and qualify for me as runners-up are My Hero Academia 3, Golden Kamuy, Hinamatsuri, and the above-mentioned Steins;gate 0. The best show this season though, and also the one that’s been my favorite, one I’ve looked forward to every single week, is Legend of the Galactic Heroes: Die Neue These. I admit, I have no experience with the original classic, which is maybe a good thing because I’m willing to bet that people are too hard on this remake based on their nostalgia for the original and having a full series to remember back upon rather than just this first season of a huge tale. Die Neue These and it’s complicated story of battles, politics, and relationships is worth more acclaim than it has received. The opening theme is on-point (“Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”-inspired?), the CG works really well, and the characters leave an imprint, especially Yang, who has joined my list of favorite characters. This series is so so so good!

Be a Galactic Legend and stream LotGH on Crunchyroll.


How about you? What was your favorite of the season? Sound off in the comments!

2 thoughts on “Spring 2018 Thoughts

  1. I knew you would love Yang! He’s such an amazing and humble character, and a testament to the value of studying history. I have my complaints about the remake, but the pacing and dialogue (arguably the most important part) have been on point, and it’s gotten a lot of new fans into the series, so I can’t really hate on it too much. It’s a shame we have to wait so long for additional episodes, but I just hope it manages to adapt the entirety eventually. It’s “so so so good” now? You have no idea haha!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s