First Impressions – Winter 2014 Anime

WIth a new season starting, I figured I’d give my thoughts on a few anime that have started airing recently.

Space Dandy

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I hope this show won’t try to rely on its humor too much (or rather, hopefully the humor improves), because the first episode was anything but funny. The first half dragged because of a long series of unfunny jokes that rely on some kind of humor I’m clearly not in tune with, and while the second had a bit more going on, it wasn’t much better. Not to mention they made the same mistake everyone else does when breaking the fourth wall – repeatedly pointing out that they’re doing so.*

Despite issues with that, it looked great for the most part, was crazy colorful, and the music was fantastic (think Cowboy Bebop OST + the 1970s). I was a bit disappointed in the English voice acting, which is generally pretty meh, but I figure I’ll stick with it to the end (or until I potentially drop). I’m hoping it will improve as it moves along, but I won’t hold my breath.

* The only time breaking the fourth wall was done well that I can think of off the top of my head is in Bakemonogatari, in the conversation when Senjougahara says “After all, my voice actress is quite talented.”

Super Sonico The Animation

Dat ponytail

Dat ponytail

I literally had no expectations for this show. I knew nothing about Super Sonico, I knew nothing about the concept, I had no idea what it could or would be. Well, I think I’m glad I watched it. If the first episode is any indication, this will be a plotless cute girls doing cute things type show, except Sonico isn’t your typical moe character. She’s quite… well-endowed. I mean, those thighs. That chest. I’m probably beginning to sound like a pervert, but it’s unavoidable when watching the show. She even has a part time job as a gravure idol, so… yeah. I’m not expecting anything amazing, but I’ll follow the rest of this. I hope the show is relatively light on the fanservice though.

pupa

Dat censoring.

Dat censoring.

You know, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect besides gore, but I figured I’d give it a try. Frankly, that was a waste of four minutes. Yes, the episodes are four minutes long. Not to mention that it’s censored, so even for people who like gory shows, this might not appease their curiosity. Don’t bother with this one until it’s done airing, if you watch it at all. I would drop this if it wasn’t such a small amount of time required to watch it.

Noragami

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This one actually seems quite interesting. The basic concept sounds like a cross between Soul Eater and the Monogatari Series (even with the same voice actor for main characters here), but it’s also very different from both. This is my most anticipated series for next week, as I think this one could turn out very well.

Chuunibyou Demo Koi ga Shitai Ren

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This is the second season of Kyoani’s Chuunibyou, and as long as this season doesn’t go full (melo)drama, I probably won’t complain about it. And Rikka is so cute.

Seitokai Yakuindomo *

Hata is the reason I watch this show

Hata is the reason I watch this show

I wasn’t a huge fan of the first season – perverted jokes can get old pretty fast when that’s all there is – but figured I’d watch the second anyways. I don’t think it will be much better, but I might be wrong. Ignoring the awful overuse of CG, this episode was actually surprisingly enjoyable, even if 80% of the perverted jokes were still complete flops that I would have only found funny when I was in elementary school.

Saikin, Imouto no Yousu ga Chotto Okashiinda ga.

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All I heard about this one before I got around to watching it was that it sucks. I stopped watching shortly after the little sister was possessed. This show sucks.  Dropped.

Sakura Trick

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Lesbians. No, seriously. It’s sort of like Yuru Yuri except with a lot more yuri. It’s not very subtle, but that’s not a problem because it still manages to be cute and funny, so even if you aren’t particularly a fan of this kind of show, you should at least check out the first episode. This seems like the most promising comedy/slice-of-life of the season.

Nobunagun

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When the episode started, this felt like just another slice-of-life show, complete with idiot main character running to school late with a piece of toast in her mouth. Once things started rolling though, it starts to show a bit more promise, and while it doesn’t set itself up for success right off the bat, it definitely has some potential. Whether or not it will actually deliver is another story.

Nobunaga the Fool

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Another anime based on Oda Nobunaga, except this one seems far less promising. The concept is strange – they basically took Europe and Asia and made them two ‘stars’ connected by space travel, there are mechs in the Warring States period of Japan, the main characters include Nobunaga, Joan of Arc, Leonardo da Vinci, etc. (Apparently King Arthur is involved as well). It really feels like someone had the general concept written out and then thought, “Oh, this would be so much better with mechs and historical figures!” Spoiler alert – that doesn’t make it better. Update: Dropped after episode 2. It’s thoroughly meh.

Witch Craft Works

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One of the first scenes has a character named Obama-kun (for srs) beating up the MC while saying in Engrish “The best is yet to come.” The entire concept of the show is whack, but it works since the comedy is delivered effectively and the general over-the-top nature of the show carries through. This will be another one I’m looking forward to next week. This one is certainly not for those who like things to be somewhat serious.

Nisekoi

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Shaft to the rescue! While the first episode felt more like a setup for the rest of the season more than anything else, it was enjoyable enough that I’m looking forward to the rest. Not to mention that since Shaft did this one, it’s going to look great (as evidenced by the first episode) and there will be glorious head-tilts.

Mahou Sensou

I don’t have a picture, but oh well. This one was extremely uninteresting and had some really stupid things happen, such as deflecting a sword with a shinai (bamboo practice sword for kendo), magic-wielding being treated like a contagious disease, etc. Dropped.

Hoozuki no Reitetsu

I’m not quite sure to think of this one, but it could really go either way. While it certainly has times when it’s funny, there are also plenty of times where the story seems to advance very slowly through dry dialogue. Unless the quality drops significantly, I’ll be sticking with this one to the end though, as it’s interesting enough to hold my attention and look forward to a bit more.

Carry-overs from last season:

Golden Time – Ponytail Linda is best girl. Nana is best girl otherwise.
Kill la Kill – I have no idea where they’re trying to take this story, but they clearly aren’t doing a very good job.
Kuroko no Basuke – Because I need my weekly dose of supernatural Japanese basketball. Kise is so OP.
Hunter x Hunter – Even though I’m not caught up yet, this show is great. Watch it.

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4 thoughts on “First Impressions – Winter 2014 Anime

  1. Damn what the hell I just watched that Hunter x Hunter episode with DAT HISOKA FACE. And took a screenshot of it as well for my Twitter header pic. Lol coincidences.

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