First Impressions – Winter 2015 Anime

Welcome to the first overview of anime from 2015! Hopefully they aren’t too bad.

Okay, they aren’t too bad.

Koufuku Graffiti / Gourmet Girl Graffiti

[JnMBS] Koufuku Graffiti - 01 [0AB0F572].mkv_snapshot_09.19_[2015.01.09_19.19.44]

Pretty young anime girls, food porn, and a dash of Shaft’s visual style? How could this not be good? The first episode is about what I expected, but with significantly less Shaft-ness – besides the semi-erotic food eating, it’s pretty normal. As a side note, hearing Satou Rina make those noises made my heart want to explode.

Altogether, it seems like it’ll just be a nice slice-of-life about food, which works perfectly well for me. Food is one of my three favorite things, right behind pretty young anime girls and food.

Kantai Collection

[HorribleSubs] Kantai Collection - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_16.42_[2015.01.09_20.35

I’ve always had a vague understanding of what KanColle was about, but the general concept never drew my attention enough to look into it more. “Ship girls” fighting a foreign enemy always seemed like one of those situations where the fandom doesn’t even care about the origin, just the characters that came out of it (a la Touhou).

So far this has just been a boring slice-of-life combined with sort-of kind-of serious battles (Instead of actually taking physical damage, the characters’ clothing falls apart when they’re attacked, which is pretty awkward for these “serious” situations). I have a feeling it’s never going to delve too deep into the more dangerous nature of the overarching conflict, instead being more of a cute girls doing cute things type show. And visually, they switch back and forth between traditional and CG animation pretty frequently in the battle scenes – it looks bad. Like really bad.

I’m going to keep this show on hold, simply because I’d like to limit how many shows I watch simultaneously, and this is certainly not a priority.

Durarara!!x2 Shou

I love me some perfect subtitles
I love me some perfect subtitles

Ikebukuro’s pretty boring in real life. The most exciting thing I saw was some guy emphatically playing a banjo (and an earthquake simulator). Ikebukuro’s something else entirely in Durarara – it even has a Russian sushi shop!

The first season hit its peak at just about the halfway point, and then sputtered along to the end. Based on this episode, the second season could go either way, although everything was way too corny for my taste – especially the music. They also name-dropped a lot of bad light novels/anime (Index, Black Bullet, Mahouka, etc.). Since the first season was nothing amazing, I’m not going to expect too much out of this – hopefully things are at least a bit more consistent this time around.

Death Parade

[HorribleSubs] Death Parade - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_01.01_[2015.01.09_22.25.21]

In 2013, a short called Death Billiards came out of the “Young Animator Training Project” that was intended to get fresh blood involved with the anime industry. While the short itself was nothing spectacular, it fueled enough interest to birth a full series – Death Parade.

The concept of the show is rather dark – having people compete to decide whether they receive salvation or damnation in the afterlife. The pacing of the first episode was a bit too fast, but I’m curious to see what direction they take everything. I highly doubt that every episode will have a “game,” as that will get old rather quickly, so I’m interested in seeing exactly how things pan out.

Oh, and the OP was pretty funny. I don’t think anyone expected that.

The iDOLM@STER Cinderella Girls

[HorribleSubs] THE iDOLM@STER CINDERELLA GIRLS - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_09.45_[2015.01.09_23.03.55]

Cinderella Girls is an iDOLM@STER spin-off based on a mobile game. So far, it hasn’t done too much to set itself apart from similar anime, as we have the typical genki girl protagonist, the more introverted secondary protagonist, and… an unusual Producer. At least he’s completely different than the Producer from the original series, even if he is unintentionally creepy.

I enjoyed The iDOLM@STER, but one of the things that it did well was juggle a large cast of main characters effectively, so it’ll be odd to see how a more focused approach works. Besides that, I’m just hoping the music is decent.

Ansatsu Kyoushitsu / Assassination Classroom

[BakedFish] Ansatsu Kyoushitsu (2015) - 01 [720p][AAC].mp4_snapshot_19.31_[2015.01.09_21.53.44]

When this anime was announced, my first reaction was “Oh, so that’s what that octopus thing is from!” Now that I’ve seen the first episode, I can understand why this caught a lot of attention.

The general premise – the class being tasked with murdering their totally-not-an-octopus-alien teacher – is absolutely ridiculous and really makes no sense, but the episode was still very fun. It’s silly, but it’s very enjoyable. Hopefully this keeps it up!

Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei Bu Love! / Handsome High School Earth Defense Club Love!

[HorribleSubs] Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei-bu Love! - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_17.07_[2015.01.09_21.00.18]

I’m not going to lie, but I’ve been hoping for a mahou shounen (magical boy) show for a while. Lo and behold, that dream has become a reality. This show is even weirder than Twintails from last season.

The first episode included a lot of chikuwabu, a pink wombat thing (no contracts yet), and the word “Love” spewed out about 500 times. I’d imagine that the rest of the season will be similarly unusual, as there wasn’t even a hint of seriousness here.

Yuri Kuma Arashi / Lesbian Bear Storm

[HorribleSubs] Yuri Kuma Arashi - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_19.23_[2015.01.09_20.01.04]

Everyone seemed to be getting their panties wet over this before the first episode even aired, so I decided to check it out.

All that I got out of it is that it’s about lesbians… and bears… and a storm? It’s weird. So far it feels like someone’s fever dream – incoherent, very confusing, and missing a point. There’s hardly any context for what the characters are talking about, the “threat” of the bears seems ludicrous, the symbolism is sickeningly blatant, etc. I’ll watch a few more episodes, but unless something changes that really catches my attention, I’m probably dropping it.

The Rolling Girls

I'm not sure if these faces were intentional. I'm not sure if I want to know.
I’m not sure if these faces were intentional. I’m not sure if I want to know.

I heard a lot of people say good things about this, so I decided to check it out. I guess I can understand the hubbub, but it’s nothing amazing.

Right off the bat, this show has significant Kill la Kill vibes, which might be a good thing. Unlike Kill la Kill, it also has a lot of color, and a much larger dose of normality… which is strangely one of my issues with the first episode. Kill la Kill was crazy 100% of the time, but the tone shifts in The Rolling Girls are a bit jolting. One second you have two people engaged in a ridiculous battle, the next someone’s buying groceries without any fanfare.

Also, the explanation for how Japan ended up in its fractured state was the best part of the show – “Some stuff happened.”

I’m planning on watching both JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders and Kuroko no Basket 3 as well, but I’m going to hold off until they’re done and then marathon them. And I need to finish the first half of Stardust Crusaders first.

Stuff carried over from last season – Shirobako, Kiseijuu / Parasyte, and Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso / Your Lie in April.

7 thoughts on “First Impressions – Winter 2015 Anime

  1. Yurilkuma, KanColle and Magical Boys are keepers. Rolling Girls was decent but I am sure it will do better next episode.

  2. I have only seen KanColle.
    I am still trying to finish from last season YuYuYu, Cross Ange first part, Sora no Method and Trinity Seven. And I’m keeping from last season Shirobako (Aoi will be mine someday), Shigatsu and Cross Ange.
    I was hoping for Yuri and Bears to be at Crunchyroll, but they don’t do miracles apparently :/

    1. Yeah, Crunchyroll doesn’t seem to be offering much this season, which is a bit disappointing. Last season I watched most of the stuff on there, which was super convenient.

      And I agree about Aoi, she was best girl of the season.

    1. Well, I enjoyed the stupidity of it.There’s obviously no substance to it, and I won’t be surprised if I completely lose interest halfway through. It’s so goofy I’ll probably watch it till the end though.

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