I don’t know about everyone else, but I feel like this current season of anime is just flying past. We’re already at the halfway point, and we’re going to have to come to terms with the fact that the shows we are watching will have to end.
For now though, we still have time with them. As is usually the case, here’s what I think of the shows I am watching this season now we are halfway through it.Anime-Gataris
I’m having a lot of fun watching Anime-Gataris. It’s simply about a group of people who share a love of anime in an anime club. Forming the club was no easy task, and even after overcoming the challenges of the student council, being anime fans isn’t easy.
This show is packed full of references to many other anime. I’ll admit that I don’t get a few, and there are some I’m only vaguely aware of. Still, there are plenty that I do get.
When it comes down to it, though, Minoa and Arisu’s passion for anime is the thing that keeps me coming back for more.
I decided to pick this one up because the manga was serialised in Manga Time Kirara Carat, the magazine which gave us the likes of K-On! and NEW GAME!. It’s just proven to be a really dumb show, and I do have a couple of issues with it.
First up, Maika is supposed to naturally look like she is always glaring – that doesn’t come across at all in the anime.
And though it seems commonplace in anime, not a big fan of the adult male crushing on the schoolgirl. It doesn’t help that Maika is hopelessly naive, and she adores foreign things. Actually, Dino is supposed to be Italian, but I can only recall hearing gratuitous English from him – oh, and perfect Japanese, because that’s just how these things go.
In a rare case for a show with a cast full of cute girls, it is actually one of the male characters who is my favourite – Akizuki, who is a fan of yuri.
Seeing him bond with Kaho over mobile games (I’m certain it was a Love Live! School Idol Festival type game) was actually pretty neat. Probably could have done with less of Akizuki getting flustered by Kaho in her bikini, but I guess that is the level BLEND-S is at now.
I’m not enjoying it as much as other shows on this list, but since I am halfway through I may as well see it through until the end.
BORUTO: NARUTO NEXT GENERATIONS
The what I think is the third major storyline has concluded as of the most recent episode. It had some neat action, with both Sarada and Boruto getting decent fights. Since the current opening shows Boruto and the others with headbands, I am going to assume we’ll be seeing Chūnin exams before long.
There are also a few background characters I would love to learn more about – in particular, there is gothic lolita lass. She doesn’t really feature prominently, though, so I won’t get my hopes up.
BORUTO: NARUTO NEXT GENERATIONS has been fairly enjoyable so far. There isn’t really much more to say about it.
Dragon Ball Super
The Universal Survival arc continues, and we have seen some spectacular battles. I’m sure many would say that Goku vs. Jiren has been their highlight, but for me that honour has to go to the Saiyan women of Universe 6 taking on Goku.
Ever since they have been introduced, I have adored Caulifla and Kale. Sure, some diehards are upset by the power those two have, but you won’t hear me complaining. I’ve seen that the previous two episodes of Super at the time of writing have been well received, so I’m going to guess that Caulifla and Kale will have more appearances outside of this arc. Well, I hope they do, at least.
I have enjoyed this arc – obviously mostly for the Caulifla and Kale stuff, but it has also been great seeing characters who don’t usually get the chance to shine given the spotlight.
I’m British, so using the American spelling of ‘sabre’ rather than the French version used by the English irks me somewhat – however, that’s what is canon within the show, so I guess I’ll just go with that – even though Saber of Red is British as well…
Still, that’s a minor complaint compared the lame protagonist – what a surprise, huh? Another Fate adaptation with a lame main character – which is annoying, because it can do good protagonists (Fate/Zero and Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA ILLYA being the best examples).
Sieg is terrible, and allowing him to channel Saber of Black due to anime BS is pretty lame. If Saber of Red and her Master were the central characters, that would make this show even better.
As with Fate/stay night, come for the cool fights between heroes of history and folklore, and just grit your teeth through the aforementioned lame stuff.
Perhaps this a problem in Fate in general – the Servants all have varied and interesting histories to draw upon. The Masters don’t get such a privilege, and they tend to be hit and miss.
What it all boils down to is that I want less Sieg and more Saber of Red in Fate/Apocrypha.
Girls’ Last Tour
Chito and Yuuri continue to travel through a post-apocalyptic wasteland, and Girls’ Last Tour continues to be one of the laid back shows of the season despite the setting. The interactions between the two girls are fun to watch. There’s also been some really great moments, with the one that stood out to me being the whole thing with the raindrops.
Safe to say, I am enjoying Girls’ Last Tour.
Himouto! Umaru-chan R
I think that this second season of Himouto! Umaru-chan has actually improved on the first. Umaru doesn’t seem as bratty as she did in the first, and her friends seem to feature a lot more which makes for more enjoyable episodes.
The most recent episode seemed like it would be one that would focus on Kirie, but Sylphyn ended up stealing the spotlight. Whilst I do like Sylphyn a little more due to this second season, I was kind of disappointed with that turn of events. Especially with Kirie revealing that she wants to be a storybook author.
Fortunately, there will be more from Kirie in future episodes, and the most recent one suggested that she may be starting to see through Umaru’s ‘Komaru’ persona…
Kino’s Journey -the Beautiful World- the Animated Series
I’m really liking the sense of adventure I’m getting from this one, with Kino travelling from country to country. Some countries certainly hold far more appeal than others, though I’m glad that Kino’s Journey -the Beautiful World- the Animated Series doesn’t shy away from darker stuff. The world may be ugly sometimes, but surviving through that makes the beautiful parts so much better.
Kino isn’t always the central character of the stories, either. Sometimes they just happen to play the role of an extra, whilst the audience witnesses other characters’ stories unfold. This was the case with the girl pictured above.
I look forward to seeing what countries Kino will venture to next.
KiraKira ☆ PreCure a la Mode
The past few episodes of KiraKira ☆ PreCure a la Mode haven’t exactly been the best. The show hit another peak with episode 35, but has yet to achieve that level of greatness again. There’s still time, but for now we have the return of a character I don’t really care for.
On the plus side, Grave is proving to be a very effective villain at the moment, which made episode 39 more enjoyable than the few that came before it.
KONOHANA KITAN is making a very strong case to be my favourite show of this season. I quite simply adore everything about it – it’s a slice of life show about fox girls working at a hot spring inn with heavy doses of yuri. The stories it presents make for some really compelling viewing, particularly with the heavy basis in Japanese folklore.
…and if Crunchyroll’s subtitles decide to ignore the Japanese folklore, you can bet I’m going to complain about it in my coverage of the show.
Land of the Lustrous
Land of the Lustrous has been a really fun watch so far – I think it helps that main protagonist Phos is a great character with a great personality. The other characters all have their charms as well.
This show also looks really pretty, and the CG is really good. It almost slipped under my radar at the start of the season, but I am very glad that I picked it up.
Love Live! Sunshine!! Season 2
The comedy that Love Live! Sunshine!! Season 2 has been delivering has been ridiculously good. Yes, the serious plot of Aqours trying to save their school has been carried over from the first season, but there has been plenty of time for incredibly amusing interactions between characters.
Naturally, Aqours’ performances have been wonderful as well, and the costume designs only add to the delights of their performances.
Love Live! Sunshine!! Season 2 has been a real blast so far, and I look forward to seeing more from the girls of Aqours – particularly You Watanabe.
Still one Whole Cake Island for this one. I know there are some major events coming up, but I have no idea how long it will take to get there. It doesn’t really help that the anime is very close to the manga, so things continue to be stretched out.
With Oda himself stating the manga will enter the Wano arc in 1 or 2 years, it seems like we’ll be stuck on Whole Cake Island for a very long while, in both manga and anime.
Most of the supporting cast of TWOCAR happens to be infinitely more interesting than the two main protagonists, Yuri and Megumi. When they aren’t racing, Yuri and Megumi are constantly arguing and that all comes from a ridiculously stupid reason. It’s getting to the point that I actively despise them and just wish they would shut up and concentrate on sidecar racing.
This show is saved by its supporting cast, and the actual sidecar racing is pretty good as well. I am a little worried that Mao and Hitomi’s only purpose in the show are to be recurring gag characters, but there is still time for an episode to focus on them.
The UQ Holder! anime is cutting some content from the manga in order to firmly establish its connection with Negima!. This seems to be a point of contention for those who have read the manga…
Still, I like the different styles of immortality we get to see – from your standard regeneration to Kirie pictured above using save points. Fights also get pretty violent, too. The action is pretty much what I am watching it for, and there’s been some fairly decent stuff thus far.
Also, an encounter has been set up between main protagonist Tota and a character who played a major role in Negima!.
I’ve been enjoying URAHARA a fair bit as I’ve been watching it. It has a style that certainly makes it unique from the other shows on the list – seemingly representative of Harajuku culture, though I can’t really say how well it does that as I don’t know much about Harajuku.
This is another show where I really like the interactions between the characters – in this case, the three main girls Rito, Mari and Kotoko. As for the supporting cast, I quite simply adore Sayumi who you can see pictured above. She’s always there to lend her support to the main trio whenever they are troubled.
Wake Up, Girls! New Chapter
Lately I’ve been getting the impression that Wake Up, Girls! New Chapter has been subject to budget constraints. There have been awkward lingering shots, which makes it seem like the show is trying to avoid as much actual animation as possible. It’s somewhat jarring, particularly as I don’t recall any such issues with the first season…
But anyway, in this new chapter, WUG (and other idol groups) find themselves with competition from virtual idols.
We also see the introduction of three female WUG fans – they feature prominently in the opening credits, so you know they’ll be important. Also, one of them seems to have quite the thing for Mayu.
I know that Wake Up, Girls! New Chapter will be taking a break next week, so maybe quality will improve somewhat upon its return.
Yuki Yuna is a Hero: The Washio Sumi Chapter/Hero Chapter
At the time of writing, The Washio Sumi Chapter has concluded. It certainly gave us one of the silliest episodes of the Yuki Yuna is a Hero franchise, but it also came with bloodier battles, more fanservice and tragedy. A very worthy prequel to Yuna Yuki is a Hero, and something that I would call required watching if you are a fan, whether it be the film or the TV series.
Of course, this isn’t finished just yet: we still have to see the Hero Chapter, which serves as a sequel for the first season of Yuki Yuna is a Hero. Whilst I did enjoy Washio’s story, I am very much looking forward to seeing Yuna herself once more.
That covers everything I am watching. Much like any other season, there are highs and lows – TWOCAR has the dishonour of being one the lows, whilst KONOHANA KITAN and Love Live! Sunshine!! Season 2 are soaring high above the rest.
I’ll be honest – my expectations for the autumn season weren’t actually very high before it began. Fortunately, my expectations have been gloriously surpassed, and that just means that I may even go so far as to say that 2017 has been one of the best years for anime in recent memory. Well, at least in terms of stuff I like.