Wow, what a great new season! This is way better than the winter season or the summer season from last year.
Err, I mean, what a crap season. There’s only one or two things I’m interested in watching. Anime is going downhill, time to get through my backlog.
4-koma adaptations seem to sell
When each young girl is as generic as hell
They put viewers in trances
With lesbian advances
With plenty of yuri doujinshi as well
I hate to start this season preview off with the show I feel most strongly against and would love to die in a fire, but fuck A Channel. I read the first chapter of the manga and it instantly started with the girls making lesbian advances on each other while protecting each other from boys advances, because god forbid should some terrible boys defile these pure girls. Except it’s never said as explicitly as that, it’s just all implied stuff. The characters are as generic as hell and have stock reactions that remain as funny the first time they’re used as the last time aka not at all. The studio have only so far done the Koi de Oshigoto OVA (soft-core porn) and the director is that bloke who directed Dragonaut and Saki, so the rest of the crew behind this anime are also Gonzo knock-offs who killed that studio with their suckyness. Everything about this anime rubs me the wrong way. Argh, next, before my cynical side goes into overdrive.
A shut-in wants to make amends
With six of his childhood friends
So he can grant the wish
Of a friend (he’s not selfish)
…that’s where the synopsis ends
An original anime production? In the Noitamina timeslot that has also held series such as Eden of the East, Tatami Galaxy, Moyashimon, Trapeze, Nodame Cantabile, Paradise Kiss, Honey and Clover, Kuragehime and so on? I was ready to get excited, but it just wasn’t happening. Something was off. The trailer, the plot description and the character designs didn’t look Noitamina material at all. It was only when I looked at the staff list did it finally make sense. This is the same crew that did Toradora and Railgun. So while the rest of anime fandom squeals in delight that this director has finally been given the reigns to make his own production, I’m going to sit in a corner and sulk, proclaiming that this isn’t what Noitamina exists for.
Aria the Scarlet Ammo
Another of those generic male leads
Meets a girl with boobs like beads
She handles big guns
Like snipers and stuns
Because this is really what anime needs
JC Staff are making this and I swear they’re not even trying anymore. Based off a light novel where a high school male lead with no personality has his life saved by a super powered, flat chested tsundere (voiced by Kugi Rie). It’s even got the same damn director as Shakugan no Shana. It’s based off a light novel, but they also released a few chapters of a manga too, so I checked that out. You know something is up when the first page advertises that you can buy a dakimakura of the lead female character.
There exists two separate dimensions
You can’t go to either with inventions
Only a demon can travel
But the world will unravel
When Satan has some evil intentions
There’s a bit of hype behind this one, mainly due to the combo of being in a mainstream timeslot that held previous big names like FMA and Gundam 00, and that it’s the director of Wolf’s Rain and Darker than Black on board. Now that would generally be good enough for me to check it out, even if I think this guy is a bit overrated. But many of the other signs aren’t good at all. You would assume with this director that it would be Bones behind the animation, but nope. It’s A-1 Pictures, who have recently become a byword for mediocrity for me. The second problem I have is it’s based off a shounen manga. Again, people have been hyping it up and the one chapter I read seemed all right, but I’ve been doing these season previews for a long time now and shounen titles always get hyped up, only to fail miserably. Fairy Tail, Bakuman, Beelzebub,
Naurugayaon no Mago Nurarara, Letter Bee. I’ve been burned too many times by shounen series to get worked up for the latest rendition.
Bridge to the Starry Skies
Based off a game with every eventuality
You play a boy with no personality
With a sister who’s genki
Meets no girl over twenty
This anime has no originality
There are few lines in existence more depressing than “from the creators that made Akane Iro ni Somaru Saka”.
[C] The Money of Soul
and Possibility Control
The country is in financial collapse
Life sure aint good for the Japs
After all this time
There’s still unemployment and crime
But is this student the saviour perhaps?
Noitamina. Doing an original anime production. With a high concept synopsis. By Kenji Nakamura, the director of Trapeze and Mononoke. Except, judging by the character designs, trying for a more mainstream approach to bring in a wider audience. The script writer behind Baccano and Durarara. Promo material that reminds me slightly of Eden of the East. Awesome trailer. If you watch one show next season, make it be this one. Start getting excited now.
The Red Man kills Ganta’s classmates
But he’s blamed and only prison awaits
But you must understand
This is Deadman Wonderland
The prisoners don’t control their own fates
As you may have noticed, I’ve actually done my research this season and read the first chapter of most of the upcoming manga. Deadman Wonderland was one of the ones I was looking forward to most judging by the artwork and vicious sounding plot. But the first chapter was disappointing to say the least. The lead character is generic high school male lead with no personality while the female lead is one of those idiots who proclaim themselves as the main character’s friend for no reason and hasn’t got two brain cells to rub together to realise he doesn’t want to be friends. Urgh, maybe it gets better later on…
In this magical fantasy land
The people are in trouble, you understand
The princess sends for
A warrior from offshore
With special powers to lend a hand
For something so painfully generic looking as Dog Days, with a director and animation studio that produced Sekirei and Asura Cryin’, what’s surprising about this is it’s an original anime production. Generally the one thing anime original productions have to their advantage is originality, even if execution is often left to be desired. Maybe they’re going to shock us all and kill off all their characters one by one as the story goes on? There has to be something more to this when what we see here, right? The writers are all the folks who made Nanoha, so expect something similar to that I guess.
Dear Brains Base: I have to ask why
You’re adapting a manga by Go Nagai
This was still kiddy
So make a Durarara sequel in July
An adaptation of a ‘kiddy’ manga by Go Nagai, the nutcase who wrote Mazinger and a ton of other nonsense manga. It had an anime adaptation in 1973 but Brains Base decided it was worth having another crack at it. Which annoys me because I love Brains Base but hate Go Nagai. Ah well, at least Brains Base left their script writer to work on [C] so we still have some quality there then.
Electromagnetic Wave women
and Adolescent Boy
In a world where everything seems commonplace
There’s a girl who thinks she’s from space
To hide her small jugs
She’s wrapped up in rugs
Hiding everything apart from her face
Shaft. The guys who made Madoka Magica, Bakemonogatari, Arakawa, Hida Sketch and so on. I’ve finally decided that yes, I like Shaft. They are very hit or miss, but I like what they try to do. I like that they do something different with their animation, frame shots differently and generally pushing the boundaries of what animation can accomplish. That said, I can’t see this being any good. After Madoka Magica last season, I can’t see Shaft producing another top quality show this time around. There’s no law that says that will happen, but it’s been the case so far so I don’t see why that’s going to change. This is Shaft doing light novel adaptations heavy on the fanservice. Don’t expect anything from this.
She has the inner workings of a tank
And a big old clockwork crank
With that she can’t hide
That she’s a robot inside
Which is a big give away to be frank
Kyo Ani doing a show about a bunch of cute girls? How original. On the good side though, it’s not a 4-koma. Heck, the manga is actually pretty good. Honestly, it was the best out of all the manga I checked out for this season. It’s very much an absurdist comedy about how people get used to the absurd as part of their everyday routine along with regular everyday occurrences. I’m quite partial to absurdist comedies anyway and, judging by the trailer, I like the direction Kyo Ani appear to be taking with it. I wouldn’t be surprised if this didn’t hit it off with the regular Kyo Ani fanbase, but I don’t like Kyo Ani’s regular stuff so that’s fine by me.
Drossl is a Hatsune Miku robot chick
Gedächtnis is her big butler sidekick
They discuss vital issues
Like whether robots need tissues
And is that a monkey or echos playing a trick
I absolutely fucking love Fireball. Well, as much as one is capable of loving a series of shorts, each about 2-3 minutes long where half of the jokes are Japanese puns. For example, one of the jokes was Drossel, the robot girl who vaguely resembles Hatsune Miku, asking for a plague of locusts and Gedächtnis, her robot butler of sorts, releasing a bunch of butterflies, because ‘locust’ in Japanese is batta and that’s the sound a butterflies wings makes. But I loved it regardless. I loved the unspoken dialogue between the two, the detachment they had from the rest of the world, the leaps in logic they had. It was brilliant and I highly recommend you guys check out the first season. It will take no more than 30 minutes of your life. I quite like Drossels new design too. She’s now less about ‘dat ass’ and more about ‘dem hips’, but it’s cool regardless. Plus the animation has taken a leap too, and this is one of the few anime where CGI has actually worked perfectly. So fuck yeah, more Fireball!
201 episodes wasn’t enough to affirm
Whether the samurai with the natural perm
Would make any dough
Doing odd jobs and so
They expanded this anime for another term
Look, I like Gintama a lot. I’ve watched 110 episodes of the first season, my personal favourite being the Nabe-leon episode. The thing is, there has already been 201 episodes of this blasted show. I don’t see why you need anymore. Even the 110 episodes I’ve seen is more than enough for me. Gintama is like the Japanese version of the Simpsons, and fan opinion is that the Simpsons stopped being good long ago. Why couldn’t they just let this anime end?
It is one of those often mentioned queries
Why does it seem that every anime series
Need to include a scene
With hot spring steam
‘It’s an ancient law’ is one of my theories
This is P.A Works, the guys who made Angel Beats and True Tears, 10th anniversary celebration anime. I guess when it comes to moe studios, I don’t mind P.A Works. As ridiculously flawed Angel Beat is, it’s still hugely entertaining, and True Tears is a VN adaptation I actually kinda like, which in itself is a magnificent feat. This is an original production about a bunch of girls at a hot spring. There’s nothing about it that really stands out, but nothing that necessarily detracts either. So mildly optimistic for now.
Health and Physical Education
for 30 Year Olds
For those poor men with no luck in the bed
Here’s an anime all about sex ed.
With this great trick
Women will want your…
Well, let’s just say her desires will be fed
The studio and director have only ever done Tono to Issho, which nobody watched, and the animation quality in the trailer is pretty crap. But the concept is so amusing and ripe for catastrophe that I have to check out at least an episode of this. Even if I’m pretty certain that girl in the promo pic is most certainly not 30 years old.
Ever wanted to learn about feces farms
Or creepy guro where they cut off people arms
Well don’t look far
For there’s a seminar
To learn about various erotic charms
There was an OVA of this released a couple of months ago and I genuinely liked it. It’s all about sex and the main character is some university student who blushes furiously about everything sex related, but that’s part of the charm. Everyone else in the seminar openly discusses NTR and faeces farms while she stutters over panty selling and so on. It’s not exactly done in a fan-servicy manner either. It’s just a humorous yet surprisingly genuine look at sexual perversions. Don’t get me wrong, it’s hardly a masterpiece, but it doesn’t mention sex and then expect you to find that funny, unlike Seitokai Yakuindomo.
Kaiji Season 2
Zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa zawa
A succubus, from what I’ve been told
Is a sex demon that is uncontrolled
They drink the semen
From the dicks of young men
Except this demon is 12 years old
Maria Holic 2
I watched all of the first season of this. It was never funny. Not. Once. Worse still, it repeated the same unfunny jokes the whole way through the show, never going anywhere. I managed to go the whole way through because of pretty Shaft visuals, but they’re not going to trick me into watching a whole other bloody season. Well, maybe the new opening song, but no more than that, I swear!
I really hate to be mean
To a girl so hot and so lean
But a business book
Is not the right outlook
If you’re training a baseball team
Based off a book that sold more copies in Japan than Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Yup, Moshidora is a pretty big deal. Which is why I’m so surprised Production IG have put apparently so little effort into this. The trailer was rather uninspiring and the staff are hardly their top tier stuff. You know you’re in trouble when the director is the guy who made the Prince of Tennis movie. As in, the Prince of Tennis movie that claimed tennis killed the dinosaurs. We won’t have to wait long to see if they fuck up this anime adaptation anyway because the first episode is apparently coming out on the 14th March.
Pretty Rhythm Aurora Dream
Based off a DDR game. Anime has truly outdone itself.
Quasar of Stigmata
This is basically just anime studios doing this to the Tokyo Youth Ordinance Bill.
Ring ni Kakero:
World Tournament Chapter
The fourth season of this franchise. Apparently the first two have been subbed, but all the comments I could find on the series simply said “this is crap, watch Hajime no Ippo instead”. Come to think of it, I really should watch Hajime no Ippo. Like, soon.
Based off a pachinko game and being directed by the guy who did Da Capo. I don’t think anything more needs to be said. Well, maybe one more. This is part of the long line of Ikkitousen lookalikes about samurai alternate history girls with very little clothing fighting each other until they have even less clothing.
In Gintama they once made a joke
That the falling birthrate would invoke
They spoke in moonrunes
About a change with cartoons
And now here’s this anime for old folk
It’s hard to recommend something that’s never going to be subbed. 4 OVA’s were brought out earlier in the year but nobody bothered to sub them. I guess fansubbers don’t fall into the 50+ age range this anime’s target audience is. Although, like Gintama said several years ago, with the ageing population of Japan, we might be seeing more of these very soon.
If you like your comedy with a straight man
Then lucky for you because Japan
Have made just that
So you can laugh at
The anime adaptation of Sket Dan
I was quite looking forward to this. The mangaka worked under the guy who wrote Gintama and tried to copy his style. So I read the manga and by god is it horrible. It’s one of those manga that has a character shout “OMG you did something unusual” after any character does absolutely anything. None of it is funny, the attempts at jokes are only made apparent because a character shouts the punchline. And remember, this was the manga, where shouting is merely symbolised by spiky speech bubbles. Imagine how bad it will be when you can actually hear the characters shouting. In short, it’s like Beelzebub, except without that clever juxtaposition of a delinquent raising a demon baby. In short, take the only good thing about Beelzebub out and you have this atrocity. I’d prefer another 100 episodes of Gintama to this anyday.
This manga is a full on ecchi fanservice fest. The anime adaptation is by Xebec, the guys who do everything from To-Love-Ru to Rio Rainbow Gate. Set your expectations accordingly.
A phone that can send texts to the past
Leaves a secret organisation aghast
At this new game changer
Which means they’re now in danger
Let’s see if our heroes can stand fast
Sometimes the more information I get, the more confused I get. It’s based off a VN by Nitroplus, who wrote Chaos;Head and Phantom. The animation studio is White Fox, who made Katanagatari and Tears to Tiara. The directors (yes, there’s two) have worked on everything from Armitage to Redline to Minami-ke to Princess Tutu. Make of all that what you will. I’m just going to be lazy and mark this down as the dark horse, like I did for Level E last season. Could surprise. Could make no impact whatsoever.
Tea for Universe, Tea for Life
This anime is being done by Bee Train. Their anime are famous for taking their sweet time for anything to happen, such as .Hack and Noir. Which is why I’m finding it rather strange that they’re adapting this manga. I read a bit of it and it’s about Edo era folk getting really excited about tea and teapots. It’s over the top, something you could never say about Bee Train thus far. I have to watch this, if just to see how these two supposedly different styles clash.
The World God Only Knows 2
If he’s a capturing god who supposedly has no interest in women, then why is he so generic male lead-ish, blushing over girls and over-reacting at everything? Also, if these girls are supposedly ‘real world’ girls, then why are they even more generic and lacking in personality than any of the girls in the galge he plays? Bleargh, I hate this anime
Tiger and Bunny
You might think the title is funny
No really, it’s Tiger and Bunny
The Sunrise execs
Said ‘put ads on our mechs’
It’s a sign that they desperately need money
When I asked for Sunrise to make some more original anime, I was hoping for something more along the lines of Cowboy Bebop, Infinite Ryvius or Code Geass. This definitely isn’t what I had in mind. People ‘in the know’ seem to be looking forward to this, but I can’t say I share their enthusiasm. The staff mainly look like a bunch of guys known more for their animation merit than writing qualities. Expect a visual treat, but not much in the writing department.
Tono to Issho 2
I lied. The fans don’t shorten it to Tonish at all. That’s because nobody watched Tono to Issho.
I wonder what’s wrong with me this season? All these shows I’ve seen people get hyped up for that I’m pessimistic about. It’s usually me the one who’s stupidly optimistic. It’s the combination of a dumb sounding premise and being constantly burned by shounen series that’s keeping me from getting even slightly worked up for Toriko. Seriously though, this looks so fucking dumb.
Under the Innocent Sky
Everyday men meet bishojos
But remember that these are no ho’s
Because otaku won’t like
If women of the night
Are the stars of their moeblob shows
“From the creators of Shuffle” isn’t quite as depressing as “from the creators of Akane Iro Ni Somaru Saka”, but it hardly spawns confidence either. Maybe saying “the same director of Campanella” will lower your expectations sufficiently? Bloody eroge adaptations. This is my eroge adaptation face -_-
Worlds First Love
In a publishing office some men
Are all in love with each other again
As in every BL
That’s all the material
You need for fangirls to hand over their yen
This is nothing more than softcore porn for women. That would be fine and all, if only fangirls saw things the same way. Fanboys of ecchi crap like To-Love-Ru to KissXSis don’t pretend they’re anything more than softcore porn. Well, for the most part anyway. There’s always exceptions/idiots. But this acceptance isn’t quite as prevalent in yaoi fangirl fandom. There’s something slightly depressing at how high a score Junjou Romantica has on MAL.
Madhouse really need to dispose
The directors who call themselves Pro’s
Who made the previous
Dreadful and grievous
Anime about Marvel Superheroes
Ironman was a miserable failure. Wolverine was apparently better but still not very good. And I never liked X-Men anyway. Although I never liked Wolverine either. Or Ironman for that matter. Or Superman or Spiderman. I’m just not a superhero comic kinda guy. Although it doesn’t help when Madhouse make such crappy anime out of them.
You’re Being Summoned, Azazel-san
I can’t really explain it to you
But that trailer will make you spew
The sight of a cowgirl
Will make you lot hurl
And that’s in the literal sense too
I guess this falls into the same category as Hen Zemi. Both released a short OVA prior to this season so I checked them both out. Both rely on incredibly crude and pretty disgusting humour, yet both are cleverer than the crude humour would have you believe. In the case of Azazel-san, I like it’s little theme of demons having feelings too. How they too like a good curry and secretly hate their work colleagues. Neither of these are going to win any awards or anything, but they’re both pretty fun if you can stand the gross. This is proper use of gross humour too. Not just saying haha boobs haha poop etc.
Movies and OVA’s
Very few OVA’s and almost no movies this season. I can’t track down a single upcoming movie DVD release, although Redline is definitely coming to the UK in late May, if you live in the UK yet somehow have missed the bizillion odd screenings that movie has had. Might also get to see that Ghibli Borrowers movie sometimes relatively soon, although probably not this season. Besides, I bet you guys haven’t watched some of the other movies that have been released recently. Go watch Trigun: Badlands Rumble and King of Thorn first.
In the OVA’s section, we’ll get to see the end of Black Lagoon: Roberta’s Trail and Gundam fans get more Gundam Unicorn, but all the other stuff is just DVD specials. There is an OVA called Spelunker Sensei about a suicidal maths teacher, but there’s not a whole lot of info on that. There is the bunch of experimental OVA’s from last season that we haven’t seen yet, like Tailenders, Noregaki and Koisento. Tailenders was released ages ago but nobody subbed the blasted thing! I do know what they will be subbing though. The Nana to Kaoru OVA. I got quite a shock when I visited the homepage and was greeted with this NSFW picture.
While there’s always [C], the fact that a Kyo Ani show is my second most anticipated anime of the season tells it’s own story, although that probably says more about the anime in question than this spring season. Heck, my third most anticipated would probably be Fireball Charming, and that’s just a series of shorts. Sorry Kaiji fans, but the prospect of even more zawa zawa zawa, while appreciated, isn’t something that has me on the edge of my seat. What’s really damning this season is the reliance on 5 shounen series (Sket Dance, Blue Exorcist, Gintama’, Toriko and Deadman Wonderland) to do the business. I’ve already expressed my problems with this rendition of Gintama, while other new shounen series have been seriously lacking these past few years, Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood aside. Many think Blue Exorcist will expel those demons (hur hur) and there’s certainly more talent behind it that previous shounen outings, but forgive me for being cynical and pessimistic because I’ve been burned before (why hi there Bakuman). Ah well, at least there’s always [C].