I will appreciate this season more if the new shows are good, or at least fun. Let’s start!
Judging a season’s worth depends on the overall enjoyment one has with its plethora of shows. Fun series are more than enough, and you get an awesome bonus if there’s a standout. It is totally okay for a solid batch (Spring 2016 comes to mind) even without a torch bearer since it’s a testament you can pick any of these shows and enjoy yourself.
That said, I guess you have heard this but Winter 2017 is a weak season. I cannot muster to write anything beyond “This show is driving me to sleep. Can I do something else?” vibe from most of these series. Even the top tier ones (Little Witch Academia, for instance) feel stale at some point and the worst ones (Hand Shakers) are PSTD-inducing. You get Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu but that’s cheat since it’s a sequel.
I am going to parrot Draggle-kun in his description of these shows this time. Ranked from worst to best, enjoy my lashing err… take on Winter 2017 season.
16. Hand Shakers
As if the clichéd and convoluted premise is not enough, Hand Shakers went deeper to the bad by giving PSP-level visuals only made worse. Gosh, good luck with someone who lasted for more than five minutes into this show. Perhaps the staff thought of putting cool ideas together and somehow, these ideas created a horrifying experience.
Avoid Hand Shakers. Thank me later.
15. Chaos; Child
Uhh… It is high time to stop thinking semi-colon series will produce something worthwhile, isn’t it? Chaos; Head and Occultic; Nine were a mess. Robotics; Notes is half decent and Steins; Gate is the only show that is actually good from that batch. There comes Chaos; Child which started with a bad recap of a bad show. In fairness, the latter half is better than Occultic; Nine’s messy presentation and is certainly more horrific. It’s just that… everything else feels wrong in this show.
Your totally generic anime romance of 2000s is animated in 2016. Totally refreshing if only we hadn’t seen similar series before. Zzzz… Next!
Can’t we just, like, go on to the main plot or something? Zzzz… Next!
Onihei is mildly disappointing, or probably it’s just me having not seen more samurai series before. The pacing is wobbly, there’s the weird use of palettes and the person of the week format is going to bore me. It does not help when the main character is a tad boilerplate and blends himself too well in the background. On the other hand, the featured story was quite a stunner – it’s just that the anime format is not the best medium to present it.
11. Masamune-kun no Revenge
The overly incoherent tone of this show is killing me. One minute it has comedy and the next moment it features vengeful mood. Also, the characters are scum and not the charming KonoSuba kind-of-way. Yeah, I will probably drop this soon.
ACCA’s premiere was good enough to warrant a second look, but nothing much happens there. Exposition was traded for plot and characters, and a mild smirk is the best you can get from the first episode. You got Jean, and the show gets ways to say how awesome the dude is. There’s a brewing war soon and maybe ACCA will catapult its way up once the shit hits the fan.
9. Tales of Zestiria 2
This episode is no better than the previous episodes of Tales of Zestiria. A decent flick? Yes, but does not have the wow-factor ufotable brought us in the Fate installment. At least it’s not God Eater, no?
8. Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid-Dragon
Perfectly watchable. The Kyoto Animations visuals kick again, producing a tour de force episode in terms of animation. Moreover, the jokes are funny and the characters established themselves right from the start. Just do not ask for anything exceptional and you are up to a good ride.
7. Ao No Exorcist Season 2
The long-awaited sequel is back and is just as good as the pre-filler episodes. A-1 ramps the animation, giving this series a cinematic feel and fluid animation. My only problem here is why the show started so seriously I forgot how fun this shounen flick was in 2011. The second episode is much better in balancing the mood of this show, let’s see how far this sequel can go.
6. Sangatsu no Lion
This show is back and still has the reasons for me to love and hate it at the same time.
5. Demi-chan wa Kataritai
Okay – the better monster girl show in the season. The combination of Hikari to any of the characters (especially Takahashi-sensei) is pure comedy gold. You know, the kind of comedy that leaves you laughing out loud. For now, I will put this show this high since this is the brand of humor I sought in anime.
4. Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku wo! 2
Five minutes into KonoSuba 2 and I was reduced to a pool of tears from laughing. Thankfully, the show did not get serious despite Kazuma on the verge of execution at all. The derpy animation is still there, and this contributed to the laughs one has per episode. In addition, the characters are still scum, with Aqua scratching the bottom of the barrel in terms of sheer dumbness. More of this, please?
3. Little Witch Academia
So we get a proper series, huh? The first episode is much better than the stale second OVA but still lacks the pizzas of the whimsical movie. On the other hand, am I the only one who thinks the trio (Akko, Lotte and Sucy) became annoying in the TV series? Maybe it’s the show’s way to tell us it is a reboot and they will handle the development later. I am still wondering how they will stretch Little Witch Academia into 25 episodes. Don’t get me wrong – the first episode is very good on its own and I’ll probably want to see more of this if I watched it the first time.
2. Kuzu no Honkai
If you are already tired of anime tropes, simply watch this dark take on adolescent romance. While their “I am in love with their senseis” premise does not do much, what they are doing is a nitty gritty act most anime series would imply off-screen. Character writing is also solid, with us knowing Hanabi right from the first episode. Lastly, Lerche is doing its best to capture the feel of the manga. The anime as a result is a very disturbing one, a tad too moody and a bit too introspective for general viewers. Maybe they can improve in the humor department though since it destroys the continuity of its presentation.
No – this isn’t porn or something, but a bold take on your usual flowery romance. Thank God for a dark horse in this tepid season.
1. Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu Season 2
The runaway winner this season is a sequel and it still possesses what made the first season an endearing but toxic ride. I just pray no more new characters to destroy the perfect insular mood of this show. That’s all.
That’s all for my first impressions of Winter 2017 shows. Any wild reaction? None? None!