81 CommentsMonthly Roundups / By Scamp /

October Roundup

There is actual news this month, but none of it is particularly interesting. Funimation are teaming up with Nico Nico to provide streaming anime, but they’re not available outside of North America. The live action Hollywood version of Akira is apparently A Thing instead of threatening to become A Thing, but I don’t feel like saying anything about that because the nerdrage over its existence is so great it has become stupid. So instead I’ll just post a picture of a certain satellite that crashed upon a certain building in Akihabara recently.

A Grade

A- Future Diary

Episodes 1-4

I have been trying to hold back my rampant fanboyism in my Future Diary episodic posts, so I’m not sure if the extent to which I fucking love this show is apparent. It’s the perfect blend of fast paced, over the top, thriller/horror that made me fall in love with Death Note so much. It has a cast of memorable characters so psychotic they’d put the cast of Baccano to shame. This isn’t the Deadman Wonderland kind of psychotic either, where they like killing a lot and have a stupid catchphrase. No, these characters have motives and driving morals behind their particular brand of insanity. Perhaps an A- is a bit high, but I’m so glad this show exists that it can get me by the small niggles, like some dodgy animation and some completely ridiculous plot twists.

B Grade

B Persona 4

Episodes 1-4

It’s a shame my two favourite anime from the season appear to have rather minimal budgets. While Future Diary gets by with some masterful directing, Persona 4 overcomes its budget deficit by just being really damn cool. I’ve never considered yellow to be a cool colour, because it’s the same colour as bananas and there’s nothing in the world as uncool as a banana. But Persona 4 has won me over to the lemon hued tone of the world. But it’s more than the sulfur shaded tint that I like about Persona 4 (ooh look at me, I can look up synonyms on the internet!). It has surprisingly sharp sense of humour, a rather agreeable approach to confronting your less likable parts of your own personality, and best of all, the greatest opening song of the year by far.

B- Mawaru PenguinDrum

Episodes 13-15

While PenguinDrum still can hold the claim that it is never boring, this last batch of episodes have gotten on my nerves a touch. Compare them to the Ringo arc from earlier this season. Each episode there felt like it was building up, the shocks at the end of the episodes getting greater as it progressed. The twists now simply feel like PenguinDrum is desperately trying to hold our attention by adding shock value, with no build up to these twists. You don’t need to shock me PenguinDrum, I’m plenty entertained by your story as it is. Also the Ringo arc slowly built up several stories at once, revealing more of the characters motivations. PenguinDrum has now lost that touch, choosing the focus on characters in a totally random fashion. It’s still entertaining, but it has lost its structure.

B- Invasion Squid Girl

Episodes 1-4

This season of Squid Girl is largely the same as the previous season, but there are a few squiddle differences. One new aspect I don’t like is the apparent desire to add a moral to every story. The power of friendship, the love of saving people, and so on and so forth. I like Squid Girl best when its goofy stories have messages along the lines of ‘giving up an addiction is futile because you will just fall back into the habit again’ or ‘you will die before your pets, leaving them alone and unloved forever more’. This season does seem to be making me laugh easier than last season though. Whether this is down to sharper jokes or me just being in a better mood is up for debate, but no anime has made me laugh harder this year than episode 4 did.

B- Fate/Zero

Episodes 1-5

Fate/Zero is a really mixed bag. I could write an entire post on the negative parts of the show. The  Dragonball Z- esque dragging out nature of their fights as the characters spend their time waving their egos around is dull, as are the exposition dumps, which have thankfully disappeared after that first episode for the most part. On the flip side though, the characters are varied and entertaining with enough depth to make me care about then. The animation is glorious (that is, when the characters aren’t just staring at each other from across a shipyard). I’d like to think the more we go on, the more of the kinks get ironed out, because Fate/Zero does have the potential to be a great show. Just please less of the exposition and dull willy-waving duels.

B- Last Exile: Fam, the Silver Wing

Episodes 1-3

Gonzo haven’t shat the bed…yet. Which I guess is something we should be pleased about, but it hasn’t exactly been riveting stuff either. Oh sure, the animation upgrade is wonderful and the political scenario on display is intriguing. But the attempts at characterisation have been shallow. Fam is the dullest so far, a worrying factor considering she’s the main character and all. There’s no depth, she just charges into everything. If we take the Persona 4 character personality eyecatch stat meter, Fam would have full Courage and nothing in every other area. The white haired villain is already a more interesting character. Funny how Last Exile did the Char-esque character better than the token Gundam series of the season did.

C Grade

C+ Un-Go

Episodes 1-3

Episode 3 was a massive improvement on the first two. It did everything I wanted Un-Go to do. Introduce us to the scenario, a small set of characters and each of their potential motives for the murder. Give us time for the mystery to stew in our heads, letting the characters argue amongst each other as small bits of evidence comes to the table, tieing up the mystery with the overall world story. Allow us to suspect each and every one of the characters before totally blindsiding me with the actual answer, yet one that makes perfect sense in context. But apparently the answer to episode three was really obvious to all you genre savvy clever clogs out there? I guess I’m just thick because I haven’t been able to predict the answer to any of the mysteries so far, despite every single episode having several people say the answer was totally obvious.

C Chihayafuru

Episodes 1-4

I thought I would like Chihayafuru a lot more than I do. I quite liked the main character after the first episode, but she quickly became irritating with every eternally good-natured line of dialogue that sprouted from her. The problem with all her good natured lines is they simply cover the exact same point that had already been established. Even when she grew up, this nature of the show didn’t change. It’s not just Chihaya either. We get it, bishie childhood friend. She fucking loves Karuta. We’ve spent quite literally the entire episode establishing that point. This may sound like me hate-mongering, but the reason I’m not getting into Chihayafuru is because it’s more shojo than josei. It’s not bad by any stretch, I just wish it would stop having so much redundant content.

C- Hunter X Hunter

Episodes 1-5

I’m being patient with Hunter X Hunter because I’m still waiting for the apparent “IT GETS BETTER I SWEAR” part. Thankfully it hasn’t been a chore to watch, but I’m still not seeing anything that makes it worthwhile. The varied character designs might be interesting to look at, but it means this show has no coherent aesthetic. There’s no ‘Hunter X Hunter look’ that draws you into the show. The total randomness of the rules of the world means its impossible to predict what’s going to come, which makes every twist feel like the author pulled it out of their ass. So many characters randomly dying reduces the effect of any scene that’s apparently meant to be thrilling and dangerous.  At the moment, the only part I like is the flamenco music that kicks in whenever Hisoka takes the stage, because I keep imagining him whipping out the castanets.

C- Guilty Crown

Episodes 1-3

There is some genuine promise in Guilty Crown’s story. The main problem is episode 2 happened. That episode was one of the most head-smashingly retarded pieces of anime I have ever seen and every episode from henceforth will be tasked with fixing the numerous problems that episode threw out. Episode 3 did a decent start, fixing up why Gai knew Shu would drag out a shield gun thing, but the problems still outweigh the plus points. Why does the power that seems to symbolise friendship require the character to metaphorically rape them to reach to their heart? Why is Inori such a bland dull blob of ultimate servitude? Why did the writer decide a Geass knock off would be sufficient to drag in a new audience? Oh well, at least it still looks pretty.

D Grade

D+ Phi Brain

Episodes 1-3

Despite its ridiculous premise, I can almost hear an editor from Bakuman standing over the production. “We need a rival here. Yes, he looks good, but make his hair spikier. Ooh, we also need a love interest. What does she do? Well she’s a girl so obviously she can’t solve the puzzles because girls are stupid, so just make her follow the main character about a bit”. The grandstanding with dramatic puzzles might be over the top, but it only lies over an incredibly bland core story. It feels like a DS game adaptation, one of those ones where you speed over the dialogue so you can get to the next puzzle. In short, the puzzles are what we’re here for, and Phi Brain doesn’t have the courtesy to show us the damn things.

D+ Ben-To

Episodes 1-2

I liked the lingo introduced in episode 2, with the boars and the storm of rugby players, but Ben-To just doesn’t have enough else going for it to make it worthwhile. The female characters have apparently nothing to do with the actual show, simply being there so we can stare at their thighs. It seems silly to have this much focus on the females clothed bodies without any actual service for the viewers, but whatever. Then there’s the main character, who falls into the ever growing pile of Yuji Everyleads, reacting to his surroundings like a ‘normal’ person would. That’s not a personality damnit, that’s just letting the surroundings define his actions.

D- Gundam Age

Episodes 1-3

You know, making a child friendly version of Gundam is cool by me. But making something child friendly does not mean dumbing it down and removing the depth. This is Gundam without any of the messages that come with the franchise, reducing the action to a bunch of measly spectacles held together with bland stock characters. Speaking of action, the directing is incredibly dull. I wish Gundam Age just gave up now and handed its budget over to anime with some desire for interesting direction, like Future Diary or Persona 4. For all the smooth movement, the scenes feel dull and lifeless. It doesn’t even feel like a kids show, what with all the Death and Angst. This is Gundam stripped of all the things that made it interesting, and I’m not even that much of a Gundam fan.

D- Maji de Watashi blah de blah

Episodes 1-3

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a fanservice anime that doesn’t insult your intelligence? I had these thoughts after the second episode, partly because it didn’t insult my intelligence (much). The girls were all falling over the main character to get at his meat and two veg, but at least the main character had charisma and good looks and other reasons that would make a gaggle of girls fall for him. Isn’t it also nice that the girls in question have personalities instead of being a string of submissive statements stapled together with catchphrases? But then came episode 3 and thew all those out the window. Two short stories where girls sit around doing absolutely fuck all and reveal they like the main character for completely retarded reasons while filling the screen with censorship hexagons. Blegh

D- Bakuman Season 2

Episodes 1-3

I wasn’t sure if I was going to bother with a whole new season of Bakuman, but the first episode was quite good. “Hey, maybe the entire season will be like this and the cries of “IT GETS BETTER I SWEAR” will be legit for a change” I found myself thinking. But no, episode 2 saw the glorious return of Bakumans hilarious sexism while episode 3 reduced one of my favourite characters from last season into a blubbering idiotic slave for some girl he liked, totally destroying the carefully worked out motivations they set him last season. Pah, dropped. I’m quite relieved I don’t have to watch anymore of you Bakuman. Good riddance you sexist piece of badly animated shit.

E Grade

E+ I Don’t Have Many Friends

Episodes 1-2

I do sorta respect I Don’t Have Many Friends. I hate what it represents, but there’s something amazing about how well constructed the level of loser male nerd pandering they put together is here. There’s nothing in here that isn’t aimed straight at the gut and the penis of the loser male otaku crowd. Even the entire premise of the show is warped beautifully to hit this crowd. It’s like the Nuremberg Rallies (OMG GODWINS LAW NOOOO). I hate what they represent, but I can’t help but respect how well put together they are.

F Grade

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81 Comments

  1. luffyluffy
    Posted November 1, 2011 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

    You don’t like Grudech’s sideburns? Gyahahahaha, he’s easily the best character and the only reason why I’m sticking with AGE right now.

    All in all, besides for AGE’s poor score(which is only really floating because i am a massive gundamfag whoops), it’s pretty on the mark. Good job.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 9:20 am | Permalink

      Actually his hairdo is pretty cool. It’s the guy with the orange afro that doesn’t look attached to his head that I really don’t like. Also Frit’s hair looks like it’s made out of play dough

      • Kiseki
        Posted November 2, 2011 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

        Oh please. Really.

        Can’t help but wonder what that small bump on his head is supposed to be though.

  2. Posted November 1, 2011 at 9:02 pm | Permalink

    Judging by the pace Hunter x Hunter is setting, I’d say it’ll be like … two or three more episodes before it gets to the point of the story where I started to like it. So you have a bit more teeth gritting to do. I doubt you’ll like the next part much at all, actually.

    With Un-Go, I have a relatively easy time guessing the culprit, but not the why. So there’s that, I guess lol.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 1, 2011 at 11:03 pm | Permalink

      IT GETS BETTER I SWEAR!

      • Posted November 1, 2011 at 11:17 pm | Permalink

        You’re such a mean, smelly jerk! ;-;

      • Redcrimson
        Posted November 2, 2011 at 12:40 am | Permalink

        The thing I like about the Hunter x Hunter manga is that it puts a more emphasis on strategy and tactics than your typical shounen fighting manga. As opposed to who can yell their attack names the loudest and take inhuman amounts of damage.

        Unfortunately, this doesn’t really start to come into play until last part of the Hunter Exam arc.

        But it gets better I swear!

      • Karry
        Posted November 2, 2011 at 1:26 am | Permalink

        “The thing I like about the Hunter x Hunter manga is that it puts a more emphasis on strategy and tac­tics than your typ­ical shounen fight­ing manga.”

        Uh, just take this crap off the air and animate me some Jojo.

      • Anna Ki
        Posted November 4, 2011 at 3:57 am | Permalink

        Just like Un-Go!

  3. Mr. Anon
    Posted November 1, 2011 at 9:08 pm | Permalink

    >E+ I Don’t Have Many Friends
    For being the funniest show this season by far, this deserves to be at least as high as any other comedy (e.g. Ika Musume.)

    Sure, it also contains generous amounts of fanservice and otaku bullshit, but you’re not giving it nearly enough credit.

    • Flawfinder
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 2:45 am | Permalink

      Different tastes. Comedy is pretty subjective, plus the anime’s cliches might distract people from the good parts if they don’t like it. Kind of like how I can’t enjoy the mysterious atmosphere of Kamisama No Memochou because of the horrible characters, writing, and comedy.

      • mcm38
        Posted November 2, 2011 at 9:29 am | Permalink

        Kind of like adding salt to some very exquisite darjeeling tea instead of adding sugar.

  4. Posted November 1, 2011 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

    Fate >>>> Shana > I Don’t Have Many Friends > Penguindrum = Mirai Nikki = Persona > Last Exile > Diarrhea > Guilty Crown

    I assume everything else on your list should go somwhere between Last Exile and Guilty Crown.

    This is obviously but my humble opinion and I respect yours even though I don’t agree with it.

    • romulus
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

      Shara and I Don’t Have Many Friends before those 2 majestic shows? Y U NO HAVE ELITIST TASTES?
      OK seriously I respect your opinion but this opinion is, to say the least, weird.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

      I kinda agree. I thought everyone had agreed that Shana was shit?

  5. Embok
    Posted November 1, 2011 at 10:45 pm | Permalink

    To point out, Gundam’s themes don’t always throw themselves at the viewer in the very first episode.

    Also episode four has greatly improved the series now that the fujoshi-bait character has arrived.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 1, 2011 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

      IT GETS BETTER I SWEAR

      • luffyluffy
        Posted November 2, 2011 at 12:29 am | Permalink

        The series got better from episode 1 when Grudech was introduced, clearly.

    • Embok
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 1:30 am | Permalink

      Well yeah it does. Most stuff gets better. Doesn’t stop initial impressions from generally giving you a good idea of what to expect down the line. I’m not saying you should give it another chance, just that Wolf taking a shower is a great scene and I feel bad for anyone who misses out on it.

      • Scamp
        Posted November 2, 2011 at 9:21 am | Permalink

        No, most stuff doesn’t get better. It’s about equal chance between getting better and getting worse. The one true fact is that something that starts good is more likely to remain good and something that starts crap is more likely to remain crap

    • Kiseki
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 3:42 am | Permalink

      Frito was already fujoshi bait.

  6. Posted November 1, 2011 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

    Future Diary, Persona, Penguindrum, Un-Go, Fate/Zero, Chihayafuru all better rated than Guilty Clown? BokuTomo gets horrigrade? You get better, I swear.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 9:22 am | Permalink

      And I thought I was giving Guilty Crown a better grade than most people

      • Posted November 2, 2011 at 8:22 pm | Permalink

        Apart from Ben-To there’s nothing you placed wrong relative to it, so I’m happy enough.

  7. mcm38
    Posted November 1, 2011 at 11:22 pm | Permalink

    They will all get better Scamp, I swear on the dead body of my great grandmother! (For the ones who didn’t get it, she’s alive.)

    No anime is bad, they all just are good for the audience they’re aiming at. Loli-anime for pedofiles, Fanservice anime for perverts and as last The Legend of Black Heaven for Scamp.

  8. Posted November 1, 2011 at 11:54 pm | Permalink

    Alright, I do agree with Penguindrum being dropped down to a B minus, but Future Diary being top tier?

    Come on, man. Come on.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 9:23 am | Permalink

      Yes. Yes it is Top Tier

      • Posted November 3, 2011 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

        It’s Mediocre Tier at best.

      • Posted November 4, 2011 at 9:42 am | Permalink

        O-M-G, it’s to-ta-lly Bottom Tier.

        /sarcasm

  9. Posted November 2, 2011 at 1:11 am | Permalink

    We sure rank differently, heh~
    But I do agree about Mirai Nikki!

    Also, Bakuman 2-3 made me facepalm so many times. So. Goddamn. Stupid. Surprisingly enough, 4 was better. Maybe because it actually focuses on mangaaaaaaaaaa

    • Scamp
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 9:23 am | Permalink

      IT GETS BETTER I SWEAR!!

  10. Posted November 2, 2011 at 2:32 am | Permalink

    Ahem,
    It is unfortunate, but as a resident of the intrawebs, I am obliged to point out that since your opinion is different from mine, it is NULL, VOID AND JUST PLAIN WRONG.

    Now, that I have denounced your opinion, it is time for me to talk about my opinion, which is of course backed up with full-proof internet logic, because you know, logic makes me look smart and stuff.

    I am surprised you hate Maji de Wata­shi blah de blah so much, okay, that was a lie, knowing you, I am not surprised. But, still!

    The girls actually have decent personalities, and the main character is really, really cool. I know it’s perverted, but who cares~! I didn’t mind episode 3′s focus on nothing happening, namely, because I am fine with no movement/action and pure dialogue, especially if the dialogue is somewhat funny as it was on occasion in this case. Though, I will say that episodes 4 and 5, (especially 5) were significantly better than 3.
    Yay for more “It get’s better, I swear!”

    Leaving that aside, how dare you place I Don’t Have Many Friends as an E! You didn’t even see the sexy “I play and read eroges” scene in episode 3. Not to mention episode 4′s classy scene that pervertified Gundam. How could anyone dislike mockery of that sort! Who knows, maybe I am just a perverted, nerdly, otaku, but I doubt it, such negative words should not be associated with someone of my esteem.

    As for everything else, I am pretty happy this season, I am currently watching Chihaya, it isn’t bad, but it looks like it will get better soon ( I know….), HunterxHunter is great– if only for nostalgia– Un-Go ain’t bad –if only for the main character+sidekick +nice art combo).

    Guilty Crown is okay, haven’t bothered with Bakuman after episode 2 or 3, I can’t recall, but as a reader of the manga, I will proudly declare that “IT GET’S BETTER, I SWEAR”.
    Seriously speaking though, although I am making no promises of the sort, but there is a vast difference in age between the characters of the manga and the anime (Ashirogi Muto grew up and stuff), so it is possible that they grow to be more mature and thus more to your liking.

    For some reason, I am enjoying the harems this season (Horizon and Symphony, as well as Maji de Watashi and Friends), I think I am weird.

    No, wait, everyone else is weird, yeah, that’s right, my opinion is always right~!

    • Scamp
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 9:27 am | Permalink

      IT GETS BETTER I SWEAR!!!

    • Ryu
      Posted November 3, 2011 at 5:33 am | Permalink

      First World Problems: The Anime is so inconceivably hollow that you could literally replace its gimmick with any other obscure stigmatized hobby and all you would have to do is change the minute and a half of animation and dialogue that they put towards giving an opaque, one sided exploration of the subject that strawmans its detractors, reinforces the persecution complex of its supporters and tries to legitimise its presence by propping it up with cute girls. You could still have the same half hearted pop culture references and the same pseudo-pornographic representation of its female characters and it would still move product because its a piece of advertising to a sub culture steeped in the same values that this show espouses. You could argue that it’s no different from the toy cartoons from the 1980s that are currently going through a revival period nowadays but at least those aren’t trying to sell you child pornography.

      • Ryu
        Posted November 3, 2011 at 5:39 am | Permalink

        oh e;f:b

  11. Erif
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 3:43 am | Permalink

    Gotta say, I’m enjoying Fate/Zero very much, definitely think it’s the best of the season so far. I do agree that the latest episode (the fifth) was a bit dragged out – a lot of back and forth between characters – and sure, it could use a little tightening here and there, but it is overall a magnificent series. I don’t really understand your hang up with the exposition; the first ten minutes of the first episode dumped too much information on those ignorant of Fate/Stay Night, I admit, but I after that I believe the episode was paced reasonably well. The second and third episodes were great, and the fourth, while it offered a bit (and only a bit) too much exposition in between the fight, the action scenes were executed beautifully, and it kept me interested throughout. Again, I believe the dragging out of the fight in the fifth episode was unnecessarily dragged out and paced poorly, but the writing kept true the characters. Least favorite episode so far. Still loving it.

    Do like Mirai Nikki as well (although not nearly as much as you). I don’t think the series has progressed far enough to live up to your praise, but it is exceeding my expectations.

    I’m a huge fan of the Persona series, and Persona 4 is definitely my favorite installment. That being said, I’m pretty worried watching this anime will ruin the game for me. D: I know I will eventually, since I’ve heard so many good things about it, but if I watch it I’ll self-consciously make comparisons between the anime and game.

    As for Guilty Crown, I don’t think IT GETS BETTER I SWEAR fits better anywhere else. I think this series definitely has potential to be good, but it isn’t trying too hard right now. Characters aren’t developed too well, writing is sloppy and sometimes dumbed-down, and each episode has its faults. Also, though it’s not that big of a deal, I really have no respect for the Code Geass writer now, because this show has an extremely similar premise. One of my biggest pet peeves is lack of creativity and originality among artists. At least it seems to be moving forward now. And high production values, so thank God it still looks good. Or else no one would still be watching it. :/

    • Scamp
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 9:26 am | Permalink

      Ah come on, some of those willy waving scenes in F/Z 4 and 5 were drawn out waaaay too long

    • Maximillian
      Posted November 3, 2011 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

      @Erif:

      “Also, though it’s not that big of a deal, I really have no respect for the Code Geass writer now, because this show has an extremely sim­ilar premise”

      If you’re going to put it that way, then let’s at least get a few basic facts right…since, you know, these people do have specific names and positions of relative or absolute value.

      The actual “Code Geass writer” was Ichiro Okouchi, who is only an assistant writer in Guilty Crown and hasn’t scripted any episodes so far.

      The actual “Guilty Crown writer” is Hiroyuki Yoshino, who was only an assistant in Code Geass and only scripted like 3 episodes of that show.

  12. fathomlessblue
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    The pace of Hunter x Hunter seems to have slowed down a bit in the last few eps, so it might still take 5-6 more before it picks up. I guess we’ll see how it turns out. I haven’t read the manga, but I’m beginning to suspect much of the cynical, apathetic feel of the first series (there are a few moments which nearly hit Black Lagoon S2 levels) comes from the directorial style, similar to how the first FMA was more atmospheric and angst-ridden than the source material.

    Re: the lack of aesthetic regularity; sadly that’s the one of the series biggest failings. There is no attempt to create cohesive character models or even a realised universe for them to inhabit. We’re talking a completely random mixture of fantasy, early 19th century Europe, steam-punk, cyber-punk and modern society (a huge chunk of the story takes place in a mid 90’s clone of New York). It’s pretty disappointing for a shounen to put so little effort into its design.

    PS. While I agree with you on the concept of I don’t have many friends, the first two eps still had funny moments. Then it nosedived.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 9:27 am | Permalink

      IT GETS WORSE I SWEAR

      • fathomlessblue
        Posted November 2, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

        Well, if you truly find nothing positive from the show, I’ll buy you a sweater, I swear!

    • Anna Ki
      Posted November 4, 2011 at 4:12 am | Permalink

      “much of the cyn­ical, apathetic feel of the first series (there are a few moments which nearly hit Black Lagoon S2 levels) comes from the dir­ect­orial style”

      Yeah… that kind of tone and atmosphere comes from the manga, which I do agree that this adaptation is a complete fail at getting, since it seems more interesting in conquering the toddler market. Pfft. One of the latest chapters reminded me of Gantz. I have no fucking clue what they’re going to do with that if they ever manage to animate the material up to that point.

      I disagree about the aesthetics of HunterXHunter (the manga!) being a failing. I think HunterXHunter (the manga!) has a very unique, cohesive look to it tied together by the author’s art style, it’s just not based on any single thing that we can recognize and pin down. I think it’s one of its strengths, actually, that he can pull so many disparate influences into a single look.

      The anime’s look is pretty cohesive too. It’s consistently cartoonish and generic. At this point I don’t have much hope that it’s going to get “better” because they’re just going to keep up the kiddy tone and the censorship and the complete inability to create the general atmosphere of amorality and cynicism that the manga is known for. Even Hisoka’s introduction hasn’t helped that at all. The degree to which this adaptation is failing to get the spirit of the original is, quite honestly, miraculous. I’ve never seen anything quite like it.

  13. Goresome
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    C3 where?
    IT GOT BETTER I SWEAR

    • 3242
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

      I only continue watching that, because I believe deep down that it would truly be something I would love if its pacing wasn’t so horrible in my eyes.

  14. RANDOM
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    Mirai Nikki is quite decently recieved.
    However, Fate/Zero is apparently annihilating every single anime in the season in Japan, just look at the discussion on 2ch and the incredible amazon ranking (1st for a 30000yen bdbox)

    • stupid commenter
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

      it’s by type-moon, what do you expected?

      • Redcrimson
        Posted November 2, 2011 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

        It’s type-moon with a competent writer and an actual production budget. It’d be like if Stephen King wrote a Star Wars miniseries for HBO, of course it would be popular.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 4, 2011 at 10:07 am | Permalink

      The Japanese liking things isn’t a great notification of quality. Infinite Stratos sold incredibly well and the best selling anime of the summer was Prince-Sama

  15. romulus
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    I put Persona 4 on the same level as Haganai. Uninteresting story about finding friends and opening up to them. However fu**ing glorious it looks, FOUR episodes went by and where we progressed? Nowhere. We now have four people who succumbed to their dark sides and obliterated them doing so. The same scheme EVERY time. I really hope that some kind of story will develop, or else I drop it.

    What else? The morale is something I can’t stand in comedies. I will watch ep4 though if it’s that good.
    The opposite for Chihayafuru. The mindless genkiness isn’t that annyoing when Hanasaku Iroha had one last season.

    For some reason I watch Ben-to. I don’t know why.

    • Goresome
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

      Because its good.
      Conquesting a world or having alot of drama or even making some sense is not a prerequestie to be good.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

      Err, we have progressed? We know more about all the main characters. Their friendships have deepened now that they’ve opened up to each other. We are gradually learning bits about the Persona world. The main character is levelling up his various stats (which isn’t quite the same as having a personality, but it’s certainly a unique take on it). Formulaic it is, but so is Mushishi. There’s enough of a spin each episode to keep it from going stale (although I do hope we don’t have an entire season of that).

      • romulus
        Posted November 2, 2011 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

        Hell Girl was also formulaic as hell and it tried to counter this by similar methods: slowly introducing the world and the characters and some REAL STRONG emotions. Difference: Hell Girl had different motivations in each episode, and these were ever so well-portrayed. Here whether a girl cries in anguish for her lost friend or friend cries relieved after saved from danger it is f-in unrealistic and has no effect on me.

        With the show being like this, formulaicness overcomes those little bits of progression. I suspect that now we have a team the frmula will loosen up a bit and a story begins.

  16. Ty-chama
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    Hey Scamp,
    Mirai Nikki gets even better, I swear!

    • Scamp
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

      IT GETS BETTER I SWEAR

      …I’m not even sure what point I’m trying to prove anymore

  17. Posted November 2, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    I’m currently just watching Persona, and I’m enjoying it.
    Should I pick up Mirai Nikki? I also own the first two volumes of the manga since it’s here in Germany, so I thought: Meh, I’ve read the manga, and it’s alright, but not super, and the Protag is going on my nerves, so I don’t need to watch the anime. But the way you are praising it…

    Oh, by the way, is there anything interesting scheduled for winter?

    • Anna Ki
      Posted November 4, 2011 at 4:50 am | Permalink

      The anime is pretty much a nicer-to-look-at version of the manga.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 4, 2011 at 10:08 am | Permalink

      Winter looks honestly pretty crap

      • Posted November 4, 2011 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

        Meh. Then I must wait for Zetman in spring.

  18. Redcrimson
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    I pretty much agree with everything on this list except for Ben-to. Yeah it’s dumb, shallow and absurd, but at least it’s self-aware enough to realize that. Which is a lot more entertaining to watch than trying to force some semblance of plot or drama in between beach episodes as some kind of grasp at legitimacy. Ben-to doesn’t make me want to roll my eyes out of my skull, which is more than I can say for most anime of it’s type.

    • ペーパー先生
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

      ありがとうございます! I think that the majority of the comedy comes from how seriously it takes itself!

  19. 3242
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 7:44 pm | Permalink

    The prophecy of Steins;Gate is coming true?!
    ..
    OHNOBOMBS
    BOMBS
    DEATH
    TIME TRAVEL.
    WW3.
    WE SHOULD OF STOPPED THE INTERNET FROM BEING CREATED BY SERN WHEN WE HAD THE CHANCE.
    NONONONONONONONONO0OOOO–
    //endfakefreakout

    • ペーパー先生
      Posted November 2, 2011 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

      I rrreeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaalllllyyyyyyyyyyyy hope Guilty Crown better! The animation is waaaayy to good for the story to suck! Besides, I steal feel like they still haven’t played all their cards. In episode 3 they explained how Gai could predict what that purple-eyed-psyco’s Void would be. I still believe that they will reveal to us how he can see Voids, and why Inori has all of the personality of dry-wall. Either that, or the makers are a bunch of retarded donkeys taking a bump on a computer. But even then, it’s just to pretty to stop watching!

      • ペーパー先生
        Posted November 2, 2011 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

        *still

  20. ペーパー先生
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 10:33 pm | Permalink

    This is kinda unrelated, but did anyone else notice that they’ve finally started animating lips?

    • DarkEnergy
      Posted November 3, 2011 at 12:33 am | Permalink

      HAhahaha. I just love this comment.

  21. NonoNoko
    Posted November 3, 2011 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

    Penguindrum>Ben-To>Squid GIrl = Chihaya Furu>Mirai Nikki> I can not be bothered to rank the rest.

    The juicy character designs of “I dont have many friends” elevate it above most of the other crap this season. If Ben-to wasn´t such a shining example of a well executed genuinely funny Harem/Comedy someone actually might mistake “I dont have many friends” for one.
    The fourth wall breaking camera (movement) and the hilarious “world-through-a-fishroll-sequence” are fresh examples of what since Haruhi has long become one of the most annoying clichés out of the abhorrently incestuous light-novel harem shtick:
    Self-Awareness

    I am glad people enjoy Mirai Nikki. I watch an episode whenever I feel like it and it always has been some ridiculous fun.
    Now I still have to check out Un-Go but I like to live with the delusion that there is still an excellent anime this season I just hadnt had the opportunity to watch yet.
    It also was my most anticipated show for this season but h well
    “Guess it can´t be helped”.

  22. Someone Else
    Posted November 4, 2011 at 2:01 am | Permalink

    Un-go ranked that high? I dropped it on the 2nd episode. Something’s really off to that anime that makes me want to avoid it. Persona 4 has to be A since its just that cool, yeah!

    • Scamp
      Posted November 4, 2011 at 10:11 am | Permalink

      Third episode was a MASSIVE improvement, although it still follows roughly the same formula

  23. TheVoid
    Posted November 4, 2011 at 2:08 am | Permalink

    I don’t recall seeing much angst when I watched AGE. Plus people dying in a kids show made by Japan should not be surprising. I’m just surprised the kept the blood in when the old commander died.

    Where was this ‘Char’ you were talking about anyways? I didn’t see one.

    I heard that Phibrain does show how they solve the puzzles after each episode ends but the subbers remove those.

    • Scamp
      Posted November 4, 2011 at 10:12 am | Permalink

      There wasn’t a Char. That was kind of a problem, not having any villains worth noting. Although I’m, 10000000% sure a Char like character will appear later on in the series

      • luffyluffy
        Posted November 4, 2011 at 11:02 am | Permalink

        Mysterious masked/hooded man IS in the works.

        5 quid he’s blond

      • TheVoid
        Posted November 4, 2011 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

        I’m not completely sure. So far the UE have acted leads me to believe their AIs controlling mobile suits.

        Of course we will probably get one but I’m not sure if he’ll show up while Flit is alive or while his descendants take up the role of piloting Gundams in the future.

  24. Anna Ki
    Posted November 4, 2011 at 4:16 am | Permalink

    I dropped Un-Go on account of its atrocious first episode. Should I pick it up again? :D

    • Anna Ki
      Posted November 6, 2011 at 4:29 am | Permalink

      “Epis­ode 3 was a massive improve­ment on the first two.”

      IT GETS BETTER I SWEAR

      (sorry, couldn’t resist :P)

  25. Posted November 4, 2011 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    We differ on quite a few shows this season, but I must agree that Mirai Nikki has been incredible thus far. I actually avoided watching it on Halloween because I am completely creeped out by Yuno.

    Chihayafuru is high on my list, at least higher than yours, but I’m a gal who loves her shoujo. I admit, however, that I would love to see some darkness or selfishness in Chihaya’s character.

    And bananas? ARE YOU A MAN OR WHAT?

  26. Posted November 6, 2011 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

    I only solved one Un-Go episode…

    I picked it back up on account of it gets better and it just…disappoints me. For once, it was really interested in the murder, and the big reveal…was just anti-climatic for me. I have a feeling I’m going to watch the whole thing and hate it…

  27. gw_kimmy
    Posted November 7, 2011 at 4:52 am | Permalink

    *sees image of rl spaceship in akihabara*

    *flips out for a sec then excitement*

    *continue on your regularly scheduled program*

    no anime for me this season~ unfortunately im much too busy irl ;(

    *flies away*

  28. Posted November 8, 2011 at 5:29 am | Permalink

    Dude, what about Mashiro-iro Symphony?

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