SPRING 2016 Taste Testing, Part 3

Hello folks! The premier period is winding down now, as only two days remain in this key week. I am going to write weekly about JoJo’s, Mayoiga, and Cerberus. All three have something to offer that I am able to describe without sounding like I should be sent to a mental institution. 


 

569idxWe start off this experiment with the “steampunk survival action” story, Koutetsujou no Kabaneri. This is from the same guy that helped produce Attack on Titan and Death Note, so you know it is going to be good. Actually, looking over that production staff in general has me excited for what is to come!

As soon as the episode starts, we immediately enter into an intense atmosphere. You get the sense right away that there the apocalypse is upon us. Just a few minutes in and we already have a very complete sense of the context, and how our main character differentiates himself. Our young, power hungry, engineer is quickly contrasted with an elegant women, who appears to be of a higher socioeconomic class. Panning across the wall leaves up with a very similar vibe to Attack on Titan, except the townspeople suspect the worst. We get to see our hero, Ikuma, contrasted next to a princess, who is unaware of hardship. The younger girl that emerges from the train proves herself to be witty and capable. Ikuma is a man of his word, and stands beside his belief that cowards are those that fear the kabane. We get short shots of the young women from the train, who appears to have taken notice of Ikuma’s actions. Bummer he was thrown in jail for his actions. That was a good way to introduce the theme of order/justice into the anime. Next, we start to focus on the girl, Mumei, who has a short attention span. “You can not lose your humanity to fear,” oh yes that is excellent. If you haven’t noticed, this series does have similar themes and a similar atmosphere to Attack on Titan and Death Note. Despite the resemblance, the anime differentiates itself in the story details and characters. Oh shit! Let the plot just drop right there! Proof that simple mistakes can have consequences. Similar to AoT, the Kabane start flooding through the hole in the wall. Oh man, Ikuma that was not a very good way to test your gun. You see, if that didn’t work, then he would be completely screwed. Since this is a really good anime, I am positive that Ikuma’s healing stone thing will be explained. Mumei is also a stellar character. I think this anime is going to be one of the best this season, if not one of the best all year! The sound, animation, story, and characters are all engaging and deep. I have extremely high hopes for this!


 

netoge-key-visual-animeWell Kabaneri is going to be hard to beat, but let’s move on to Netoge, or And you thought there is never a girl online? The anime features your average otaku shut-in who meets a delusional girl who can’t tell whether or not she is in a video game. Ecchi is tagged so I have set my expectations low. 

My impression of the first minute is not good. We go into some dramatic scene, which is then twisted by this girls stupidity. Not to mention the scene is set to music that makes my ears bleed. I don’t really understand the transition to battle, but okay. I guess that established the game relationship, okay, let’s move on to something interesting now. Okay good, school life. I actually this this opening to school life isn’t the weakest. Netoge first paints us a picture of how Hideki is treated in real life. I don;t have much to comment because this anime is just so bizarre, but in a good way. The fast pace makes it so you can’t really miss a second. Okay so something happened! Of course they decided that an offline hangout would be best. Yeah, so that does not happen in real life. I kind of like the heartfelt-ish real life scenes. I think they have more sustenance than the game. I think this anime will turn out cute for a couple of reasons: the good stuff is much more frequent, the ship is real, the ecchi components aren’t obnoxious and in your face, and this is pretty entertaining. 


 

kuromukuro-visual-bentobyte-school-castNext up we have Kuromukuro, which is meant to celebrate the 15th year anniversary of P.A. Works. I find idea of the anime as a celebration of P.A. Works to be a staggering contrast. Why would a studio known best for its “cute girls doing cute things” animes use a mecha anime to celebrate? I don’t really get it. Anyways, the anime series focuses on the blending of mecha with traditional Japan.

The episode begins with a giant robot battle taking place in a raging snow storm. I believe the giant robots are wielding giant katana. Panning around, it seems that we are in the middle of a battle field. So far, it is pretty intense, but not obnoxious. We then skip to a teach parent confrence, in which the young girl’s grades are poor and her mother is taking it out on the teacher. Okay, so the mother is basically a powerhouse-type and she works for the UN. I think a good word to describe this show would be polished. The animation is solid, the characters are believable, and the overall product is calm and collected. The art is beautiful. The amount of detail and use of color puts the show above the rest. Kuromukruo also has fantastic use of subtly. Oh wow those unknown objects cannot be good. Sad face her father disappeared. And here comes the mecha! It’s not the best I’ve seen, but it isn’t bad as far as CGI goes. It seems we get to meet our mecha heroes quite soon! Oh no Yukina don’t push the red button! And she did! I guess that thing just held a giant naked man? The naked man has called her princess and is protecting her? Well that took a turn for the interesting. I find this anime to be pretty interesting and quite entertaining. Although it might end up a bit predictable, I think Kuromukuro is going to be a fun ride. 

 


 

s6_066e60c50751bab747402b1d83e3d542Switching back to out comedy theme, we have Sakamoto desu ga? The anime features a guy who is kind of “perfect,” as in good at everything. From the trailer I saw, I have set my expectations quite high.

SUGITA! Okay this anime just got that much better. The episode begins with three guy-friends gossiping about how they dislike Sakamoto. Awkward compliments: relatable. We then slide right into a narration of how cool and stylish Sakamoto is. The opening is a fantastical display of bold colors and flashy clipart. I’m not sure how to describe the first minutes of Sakamoto’s introduction, other than ridiculous and hilarious. Oh shoot the guys are going to resort to violence because they can’t get the best of him? BONFIRE! Dancing around the bonfire OH MY GOD. I lost it. Okay, so this series just resonates with my humor extremely well, it might not be as funny to other people. Sakamoto proves to us that he is a total homie. The first part was great, now let’s move on to the second, which is set in a rainstorm. Sakamoto is the guy that saves a bird in a rainstorm. This time the blonde annoying guy hates him. “I try to crush him and it only draws more attention to him.” The bee! What the heckie is happening? This series is just too funny to write about. These are the kinds of anime you enjoy! I throughly enjoyed watching this episode. Overall, this is my top pick for comedy!


 

uyedwa_shounenmaidNext up we have Shounen Maid, perhaps this is me being optimistic, but I have faith this will be much better than Super Lovers. It is similar to Super Lovers, in that a young boy is sent to live with an older guy, but differs in that the little boy is now an indentured servant/maid. 

The episode throws us right into a funeral scene, then quickly switches around to Chihiro, who is dealing with his mother’s death. Well I guess he wasn’t too attacked since he came back to school right away and threatened to burn his mother’s letter to him. Again, kids are savage. Chihiro quickly encounters his future fake daddy. Ok I get what is happening; essentially someone got concerned because a small child is living alone at home, so someone called a random uncle, who came out of the woodworks to pick him up. I liked the opening: it was very calming, but had some darker undertones. Although I wouldn’t call this anime great, it is above average. After seeing Chihiro’s determination when it comes to cleaning, fake daddy is going to promote him to maid. On a serious note, there is something about the emotional structure on this anime that allows the audience to relate Chihiro’s homesickness. I also enjoy that there aren’t many shounen ai or yaoi vibes floating around. “He is always at home so I thought he was a neet,” Madoka takes a hit! Again, sorry about the lack of notes: I was enjoying just watching the anime. Overall, this anime left me with a good taste in my mouth, even if it wasn’t stellar. 


 

anne-happy-visual-001-20160224Finally, let’s look at Anne-Happy. This series is about a group of girls who come together after realizing that they all have terrible luck. I think this anime has huge comedy potential, and as long as the humor is substantial, the series will flourish. 

We start off the series with a quick montage of the girls getting ready for school (thankfully, it was a wholesome scene). Right away, we get a sense for the context of which these girls emerge from. Then, BAM! We start up the comedy with a ridiculous stunt, which is solved in a surprisingly sane way. Perhaps Gintama has warped me expectations. The opening is not the worst I’ve heard, but I’m not a fan. Next, we skip to the cute little meeting of our main three girl, all who have pretty bad luck. Wait, so the teacher comes in and tells them the point of the class is for them to become happy? Oh my, I worry for Hanako so much. Her death is imminent lol. It also seems that Hibari has her own issues, despite being the most sane of the group. What the heck: the most sane girl is in love with a construction sign? This anime has got me, that’s for sure. Oh the beauty of friendship. On a more serious note, this anime is actually a pretty good watch. The characters and humor are enjoyable, and the soft, pastel art draws you in. 


 

Yet again, I hope you enjoyed my taste testing of Spring anime! There is only one more part left to this series, then weekly analysis blogs will start up! 

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Author: delaneysloane

My name is Delaney and I am a student blogger from from Santa Clara University in California.

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