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Anime Roundup: Autumn 2012

Maybe it’s due to the unseasonably warm weather we’ve been having but it really doesn’t feel like we had an autumn. Heck, it’s coming up to November and it’s still nowhere near cold enough to be called winter! Anyway, with the (invisible) change in seasons, we also get a new set of anime shows! The Autumn season has traditionally been where the big guns come out so there’s likely to be a rather large glut of shows vying for our attention this time but, as usual, lets look at the stuff which has just passed first!

Best Show

Campione!

You know, it was kinda tough putting this show up here. I did enjoy it quite a bit, even if the mythology bit was half assed in the end and it devolved into a harem show with details which have been done much better before *cough*InfiniteStratos*cough* but it did get me interested in the light novel series from which it was based and the show as a whole was rather entertaining. The only problem is that I’m not sure if it has much staying power. A few months down the line, I wonder if I’ll still be thinking about the show and wishing for a sequel or not. More than likely, my mind will have wandered off to the current thing, which makes Campione! hard to recommend as it doesn’t really stick with you. But while watching it, it’s pretty damn fun!

Runners up: Binbougami-Ga!, Hyouka

Worst Show

Kono naka ni hitori, Imouto Ga iru!

Tired and dull. Even as a harem show, which has a trope list which is followed almost to the letter, this show felt formulaic and dull. The ending was contrived as well! It may not be canon (the light novels are still going) but it was still ridiculous!

Biggest Surprise

Kokoro Connect

I have to admit, after watching the first couple of episodes, the show didn’t seem to be going anywhere but further down the line, it showed that it could handle serious stuff as well and the whole thing just made more sense and it wasn’t just a bunch of friends goofing around (though that happened a lot). My biggest complaint though, would be how it doesn’t bother to try and end tidily. I know that we have a few more episodes incoming as OVAs but still, it could have been done much better than this!

runner up: Binbougami-ga!

Biggest Disappointment

Hagure Yuusha No Aesthetica

Premise? Good. First ep? Interesting. next couple of eps? Still decent. And then things went to pot. The biggest problem is that the show simply wasn’t paced well enough. Too much time was spent on the frivolous stuff, leaving not enough time for the important plot things. The overall plot is interesting enough and the characters are likeable but the pacing killed it and it’s obvious that it really could have done with another 12 eps! If you want a prime example of unfulfilled potential, this is it!

Runner up: Muv-Luv Total eclipse

The Rest

  • Sword Art Online – Plays it safe. Nothing particularly bad done so far but nothing outstanding either. My only problem now is that I didn’t really enjoy the Aflheim Online arc anywhere near as much as SAO when I read them…
  • Accel World – kinda imploded at the end with a weak-ass ending. I guess some of the blame can be placed on the source material but it was a pretty lame way to end it.
  • Hyouka – A show which really grew on me. Shame it took so long to get there though. Kinda like mouretsu pirates in that respect. Wouldn’t be surprised if both shows make my “best of year” list!
  • Dog Days’ – with it being a sequel, all the suspense and surprises were lacking compared to the first season. Still pretty fun but without and twists to fall back on, it was pretty much without thrills.
  • Dakara Boku wa H ga Dekinai – Pretty much Campione! but not as good. But I do like shows where the male lead is unabashedly perverted as opposed to just getting “swept up in the moment” See Sora no Otoshimono for further reference!
  • Binbougami-ga! – So many references!! Not quite on the same level as Nyarko but still a lot of fun!!
  • Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon 2 – Better paced than the first season and not as heavily tied down with having to explain additional stuff and overloading the viewer with information but still a mess in terms of storytelling.
  • Rinne no Lagrange 2 – Still fun but I think it would have been better as one long season instead of 2 separate ones, although the gap did serve to give the last ep of season 1 and the first ep of season 2 more impact.
  • Tari Tari – enjoyable enough but a little plain. I get the feeling that, like the other PA Works shows, this one will still be looked back at fondly long after it’s finished.
  • Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse – I would have preferred an adaptation of the original game. Total Eclipse lacks a sense of urgency. Aside from the first 2 episodes and, arguably, the recent big battle, you don’t get a sense of desperation from the characters with regards to the war with the BETA. Like the problem is miles away when it’s actually at their doorstep!
  • Koi to Senkyo to Chocolate – Pretty solid eroge adaptation. No surprises in terms of composition, but I did wish that some of the other characters got more of a spotlight on them. Guess it’s pretty hard with the path already set…
  • Eureka seven: AO - I really don’t have anything to say about the show. Like the original, despite it being much loved, this show doesn’t really leave an impression on me.
  • Gundam Age – totally forgettable. Definitely one of the lower rung gundam shows…

That’s it for the last season, here’s what I’ll be watching from the new bunch of shows!

Must Watch

Seitokai No Ichizon 2

More Minatsu! More Chizuru!!!! HELL YEAH!!!

Robotics; Note

Mostly, this show gets in because I watched Chaos; Head and Steins; Gate. Both shows were pretty good so there’s no reason to doubt that this will be anything less!

Busou Shinki

I actually watched the small series, Moon Angel and was pretty entertained by the mini series which lasted a mere 30 minutes. It was a superficial and throwaway series but it was enough to make me give this full series a chance. Besides, Altene and Altines are in it!!

Little Busters

I have to admit that I’m not actually that big a fan of Key titles but this is one of those shows which is so big, you end up watching it regardless. Kinda like Clannad. Kanon was still kinda pants though and I never really thought much of Air.

Hayate no Gotoku: Can’t take my eyes off you

Can’t say no to more HINAGIKU!!!!

Jojos Bizarre adventure

There are only a handful of shounen shows I’d gladly watch and this is one of them! Admittedly, I’m only really familiar with part 3 and bits of part 2 so watching this adaptation from the start will be new to me, even though I know how it all goes. Can’t wait for WRYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!

Jormungand: Perfect Order

A continuation so it has to be here, really! I’ve read a few more volumes beyond where the first season ended but I’m still a few volumes from the end as they haven’t been released yet but I’m dying to find out what “jormungand” actually is!!

Interesting but Meh

K

Very nearly a “must watch” but it missed out simply because I have no idea what the hell its on about. Even after the first ep, everything is still a mystery! As a result, I’m cautiously moving forward with this show, even though I’m almost certainly not going to drop it and will likely keep it high on the watch list.

Shin Sekai Yori

An interesting “post Armageddon” story about kids in a world where ppl have psychic powers. Worth a try…

Chuunibyou Demo Koi ga Shitai!

I’m guessing most people are interested in this show because it’s done by KyoAni. But I don’t care for KyoAni. The whole thing just sounds like a lot of fun, so it’s worth checking out!

Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun

One of those Bland school life shows about how a group of people develop their connections and friendships. Usually worth picking these up because they can surprise you at times.

BTOOM!

Sounds like one of those brainless action shows with a bit of Battle Royale thrown in. Could be really good!

Girls und Panzer

Another show connecting girls and some kind of war machine. But unlike Strike bitches or Upotte!, there’s no twist here. They’re just regular girls who happen to go to a school where driving tanks is a club activity. OK, the last bit is nonsense but it’s not like they have magic to run stupid propeller legs or are the tanks themselves… I read the first few chapters of the manga and it was charming enough to make me give the show a chance.

Sakurasou no Pet na Kanojo

Boy meets very odd girl rom-com. Yeah, I can fit one in here.

Psycho-Pass

A NoitamA show with an interesting look. Pretty strong cast attached to the show too so it’ll be interesting to see how this pans out.

Why am I watching this?

Onii-chan Dakedo Ai Sae Areba Kankei Nai yo ne

Oh, right! fanservice! *ticks box*

CODE:BREAKER

I’ve actually been reading the manga for some time. But I struggle to figure out why. At this point, it’s more of an automatic response as the manga itself isn’t all that interesting, which makes me wonder why I’m bothering with the adaptation. Perhaps another automated response?

Medaka Box Abnormal

Now, here’s the thing… When I started reading Medaka Box, I really liked the early comedy stuff, which was very much not like Nisio Isin but charming. That was covered in the first season. Now, with Abnormal, the show reaches the standard shounen battle manga part, which was very much infused with Nisio Isin stuff (especially the ridiculously long monologues) but was rather charmless as it was, you know, a bog standard battle manga!! Not sure if I want to stick around for that. Jojo, DBZ and FotNS aside, I don’t really like battle mangas.

To-Love-Ru Darkness

Ordinarily, this would be my “fanservice show” for the season but, as anyone familiar with the source material will tell you, there is ZERO chance of this not getting censored… So I might as well wait for the DVD rips because this show is going to get butchered like nobodys business!!

And that’s it for my watch list this season. Quite a bit on my plate this time round but I’m definitely finding time for my “must watch” shows at least. None of the shows have huge levels of anticipation for me, which is nice. That way, I’m less likely to be disappointed like I was for much of Muv-Luv Alternative and the later parts of Accel World…

So, what’s everyone else watching?

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  • Vincent

    I’m watching 19 shows, with 2 carryovers from previous seasons.

    What I am enjoying the most are Shinsekai Yori, Suki-tte Ii na yo., and Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai!.

  • http://quentinlau.blogspot.com Q

    I am watching very few anime these days, but I just picked up SAO and Girls und Panzer recently (the latter only because I like WWII tanks). I may think of picking up Jormungand as well, but not sure what to expect yet.

    I do agree with you that the Alfheim arc for SAO feels like a bit of a drop from the SAO arc. The first arc is fairly serious overall, and the way it ends feels a bit abrupt to me, even though I did not read the novel in the first place. I do hope the current arc won’t go too much of a downhill though.

  • http://lookingglass.kokidokom.net gundamjehutykai

    Shinseki Yori is definitely one of the highlights of the season so far but I’ve really been enjoing Jojo’s bizarre adventure and Psycho-Pass as well!

  • http://lookingglass.kokidokom.net gundamjehutykai

    The novel of SAO pretty much ends exactly half way through the series, when Kirito wakes up and doesn’t have any kind of epilogue. AFO picks up a couple of months after but there’s pretty much a straight continuity between the 2. They just fast forwarded the boring bits like Kirito getting rehabilitated into the real world after effectively being asleep for years. His body is pretty emancipated by then. But I don’t know what it is about AFO which doesn’t quite appeal to me as much as SAO. There is less of a sense of danger overall but it’s also just about Kirito Chasing Asuna. There’s also a clear bad guy in AFO, which was left somewhat ambiguous in SAO (you were against the world but the world isn’t inherently evil).

    Since I know what’s going to happen, I’m braced pretty well for however it may turn out.

    I’m finding Girls und Panzer to be quite awful, which is surprising because I read some of the translated manga first and thought it was rather fun but the anime is just dull. It also doesn’t help that the subtitles are cruchyroll awful! Tank-kwon-do?? Seriously???

    As for Jormungand, you can kinda think of it as something similar to black lagoon but less emphasis on pistol play and a more varied weapon selection. Koko does sound stupid though. They really picked the wrong voice actress to do her. Ito Shizuka doesn’t fit her at all!! Same with Hisaka Youko and Code: Breaker. I like her, but not in that!