It is approximately halfway through the winter 2020 anime season, so once again I’ll be sharing my thoughts on the shows I am watching. Definitely have to take a moment to mention how impressive I am finding this season; there is a lot of good stuff going on.
22/7 (nanabun no nijyuuni)22/7 has been quite the enjoyable show so far, with characters taking it turns to get episodes dedicated to them. It has a slight supernatural feel to it with “The Wall”, and the ending of episode 6 only contributes to that. Still, I’m finding plenty to enjoy with this show.
A Certain Scientific Railgun TThe third season of A Certain Scientific Railgun is the Daihasei Festival arc in which Shokuhou Misaki has a major role to play – though what exactly that role is has yet to be revealed (aside from those who have read the manga, but I won’t be giving anything away). This arc has also given Kongu, Wannai and Awatsuki moments to shine, which I appreciate.
Some enjoyable stuff so far.
Aikatsu on Parade!Aikatsu on Parade! has been enjoyable enough, but it doesn’t quite reach the same heights Aikatsu Friends! did. It is decent enough for what it is.
Asteroid in LoveAsteroid in Love has been a delight to watch. I find all the characters really fun, and it is nice to see both sides of the Geo Sciences Club getting equal attention. Just a really fun show, all said and done.
BanG Dream! 3rd SeasonThe third season of BanG Dream! has been a little unconventional that the first five episodes were released early, alongside singles from the bands. It is also airing normally on Japanese TV, but HIDIVE got the early release episodes, so viewers were able to experience episodes 1 through to 5 during the first three weeks of the season.
That has resulted in quite a gap between episodes 5 and 6, but I’ll still include my impressions of the show here.
BanG Dream! 3rd Season has been a lot of fun, with a particular focus on Poppin’ Party, Roselia and RAISE A SUILEN. The other bands have had their moments, but this third season belonds to the groups I just listed. The bands are competing, which means plenty of music being produced and this season puts keen focus on that. Really enjoying what BanG Dream! 3rd Season is offering us.
BOFURI: I Don’t Want to Get Hurt, so I’ll Max Out My DefenceThere may no absolutely no stakes in BOFURI (no dying in the game results in dying in real life, or losing memories, that kind of thing), but I think it is taking advantage of that to just provide really fun experience. Watching Maple consistently break the game with her full defence build has provided plenty of comedy, and there are plenty of fun characters joining in on the fun too.
Hopefully the original light novels will be made available in English, because this is definitely something that I want much more of.
BORUTO: NARUTO NEXT GENERATIONSBORUTO: NARUTO NEXT GENERATIONS is currently in the midst of an arc where Team 7 infiltrate a prison, which naturally has a corrupt warden. It is all right, I suppose. I don’t really have any strong feelings about it either way.
Healin’ Good ♡ PreCureStill pretty early days Healin’ Good ♡ PreCure, but it is definitely off to a great start. Lead character Nodoka Hanadera is really quite good, and she got two episodes to herself before the second member of the team officially joined. I like what this show has given us so far.
If My Favourite Pop Idol Made It to the Budokan, I Would DieThis has been described as a slow-burn romance between an idol and her number one fan, but I feel like we getting one step forward and two steps back with Maina and Eripiyo. I guess things have managed to align themselves so we are back at exactly where we were at the beginning of the season with those two girls. It is kind of frustrating, but I suppose it could all be worth it as long as we get some kind of pay off at the end of the season.
Whether we do or not, though…
Some frustration is alleviated when we get episodes that also focus on the other members of ChamJam, particularly those who share close bonds.
Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken!Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken! is superb. There’s so much great stuff to it. The three main characters are excellent, and their passion for anime is really well communicated. Things get amazing when we see the characters unleash their imagination, complete with an excellent background track. Also got to mention the sound effects, because that gets me every time.
If you ever want to develop a deeper appreciation animation, Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken! is exactly the show you should watch.
Magia Record: Puella Magi Madoka Magica Side StoryAt the beginning of the season, I was a little concerned that Magia Record: Puella Magi Madoka Magica Side Story would turn out to be just another battle girls gacha game anime adaptation; turns out my concerns are unfounded. Admittedly it has not had the same impact as Puella Magi Madoka Magica, but I expected that. I still maintain that Puella Magi Kazumi Magica is the best spin-off of the franchise.
As for Magia Record itself, it is enjoyable enough. It does a good job at capturing the same vibe as Puella Magi Madoka Magica, though there are questions that have been raised I am still waiting for answers for. I guess those who have played the game have a better understanding of just what is going on, but I’ll wait until the anime sheds some light on certain events.
My Hero Academia Season 4My Hero Academia Season 4 gave us an arc where certain characters got to be heroes, and now it is starting an arc where they get to be students. It is a school festival arc, which unfortunately means that we’ll have to put up with Bakugou yelling a lot (as usual) and just Mineta in general…
Negatives aside, it seems like Kyoka Jiro is going to play a major part in this arc, and there might be some hero work to do – after all, we had the introduction of a new villain.
One PieceThe second act of the Wano arc has started in One Piece, and naturally Luffy is in prison. Having read the manga, I know that will only prove beneficial in the end. It also means having a chance to see the other Straw Hats prepare for a major event that is coming up. Not much to say, as what we’re seeing at the moment is steadily setting up the next major conflict of the arc.
ROOM CAMPROOM CAMP continues to be bite size pieces of Laid-Back Camp goodness. Whilst Nadeshiko, Chiaki and Aoi are the main focus, it was nice to see Rin in that one episode. This is basically just an appetiser before the second season of Laid-Back Camp.
Show By Rock!! Mashumairesh!!I’ve said it on Twitter, I’ll say it on here: Show By Rock!! Mashumairesh!! is such a delight. We may not be getting more Plasmagica (at least, not yet), but Howan and Himeko are making that perfectly fine. The other two members of Mashumairesh are really fun characters, too. Wonderful stuff from this one.
Somali and the Forest SpiritSomali and the Forest Spirit is an enchanting journey, with occasional danger. Somali is still delightful, and the Golem’s devotion to her is pretty heart warming. The world that Somali and the Golem are travelling through has plenty of interesting sights, and the people they meet are certainly a varied bunch. Great stuff.
An overwhelmingly positive look back at the first half of 2020’s winter season of anime, I’d say. There’s just so much going on that ticks all the right boxes for me.
My top five shows would have to be BanG Dream! 3rd Season, BOFURI, Show By Rock!! Mashumairesh!!, Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken! and Asteroid in Love. Argh, but 22/7 is really good, as is Somali and the Forest Spirit. I love having so much choice when it comes to the shows I enjoyed most.
2020 has kicked off in quite spectacular fashion with the winter season of anime – and I honestly think we already have strong contenders for my favourite shows of this year.