Winter 2021 Anime: First Impressions

Bit late with this one for reasons, but here we go: my first “First Impressions” post of 2021. Without any further ado, here are my initial impressions of all the anime shows I chose to watch for this season.

Azur Lane: Slow Ahead!
Azur Lane Slow Ahead!With this being the first of a series of shorts, there isn’t too much to say about it. It’s fun for what it is, and I’m always happy to see plenty of Javelin.

Cells at Work!!Cells at Work! Season 2The hard-working cells return in the second season (take note of the two exclamation marks in the title), and it continues to be just as fun as ever. I’m a little disappointed that the opening credits spoil the return of certain pathogens, but whatever…
Good return for a good anime.

Cells at Work! CODE BLACKCells at Work! CODE BLACKLiked the concept of Cells at Work! but felt it was a little too optimistic? Then perhaps Cells at Work! CODE BLACK will be more your thing. It is much darker than its counterpart. Still, both are off to a pretty great start.

GekidolGekidolAll throughout the first episode, I kept expecting a giraffe to appear and claim that it understands. I probably shouldn’t associate every theatre-based anime with Revue Starlight, but I just couldn’t help it.
Gekidol looks like it will have enough strength to stand on its own two feet, though.

Not the worst way to spend 8 minutes every week, but not exactly the best, either. The humour isn’t too bad. It is a bit in uncanny valley territory, though, with the girls’ unchanging expressions.

Idoly PrideIdoly PrideThe entire first episode was a flashback sequence, and almost no relation to the synopsis you can find on Funimation’s website for this show. The second episode is more on track with what I expected, but this first episode did not leave a favourable initial impression. I’ll continue to stick with it, but I don’t have any particularly high expectations.

Laid-Back Camp Season 2Laid-Back Camp Season 2More comfy camping! It pleases me a great deal to have Rin, Nadeshiko and the other girls back on our screens doing what they do best. Plenty of really great stuff to look forward to in this one.

LBX GirlsLBX GirlsLBX Girls had a middle of the road first episode. Nothing particularly impressive there, but nothing that put me off watching it either. I strongly suspect it will stay that way throughout. Would be nice to be proven wrong, though.

Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round TableLog Horizon Destruction of the Round TableLog Horizon returns for its third season, and this time Funimation snapped it up, resulting in the subtitles being different from what I’m used to from the previous two seasons… I also wonder what that will mean for the dub…
As for this first episode, lots of sitting around a table talking. Which is good, because that happens to be one of the things that Log Horizon does best. Things are not looking good for the Round Table, so I’m interested to see what Shiroe has up his sleeve in response.

Non Non Biyori NonstopNon Non Biyori Nonstop
Non Non Biyori returns, and in the same season as Laid-Back Camp. Somebody wants us to be really comfy this season, huh?
It may be more of the same, but you don’t fix what isn’t broken. Excellent as ever.

Otherside PicnicToriko and SorawoI’ve read the light novel, and was looking forward to seeing this one. It delivered on my expectations, I’m happy to report. Sure, it may have benefited from a bigger budget, but it is doing a good job with what it does have.
We have an great dynamic between Sorawo and Toriko, and some really interesting phenomena they encounter.
Show By Rock!! Stars!!SHOW BY ROCK!! Stars!!I don’t know many music shows that start with its characters being sent to prison, but that’s what Show By Rock!! Stars!! did. The events leading up to that point were pretty interesting, and suggest that we’ll be getting a plot closer to the first season of Show By Rock!! as opposed to what we got with Mashumairesh. Whatever the case, I’m down for it.

Umamusume: Pretty Derby Season 2Umamusume Pretty Derby Season 2Umamusume returns, and apparently Tokai Teio has booted Special Week out of the main protagonist spot. It’s even worse for Silence Suzuka, who is off in America.
As much as I would like to see Special Week and Silence Suzuka together again, this second season provides more of the usual Umamusume goodness. Also, Tokai Teio has won me over as of episode 2.

WIXOSS DIVA(A)LIVEWIXOSS DIVA A LIVEOnly one episode in, and you could find people lamenting that this entry of the WIXOSS anime isn’t dark enough. I say it is far too early to decide that; this is WIXOSS, after all.
Regardless, I enjoyed the first episode, quite a lot actually. Still have no idea how the WIXOSS card game actually works, though…

WONDER EGG PRIORITYWONDER EGG PRIORITYI knew next to nothing about WONDER EGG PRIORITY before it’s first episode, but I am so glad I decided to take a chance on watching it. It ended up being my favourite premiere of the season. A most wonderful surprise.

World Witches Take Off!World Witches Take Off!This series of shorts will feature both Strike Witches and Brave Witches, with the 501st getting the first episode. I’m hoping we’ll see members of both the 501st and 502nd together later on, though.
Still, some pretty amusing stuff to be found here.

That wraps up my brief initial impressions for each show I have chosen to watch for this season. Oh, I will also mention Aikatsu Planet: I’m not entirely too sure what to make of it yet. The live action and anime mix doesn’t bother me too much, but the main character achieving a top idol status without working for it doesn’t sit well with me.

Most impressive premiere for this season was definitely WONDER EGG PRIORITY. I’m super excited to see where that one will go. Otherside Picnic, Laid-Back Camp Season 2 and Non Non Biyori Nonstop are certainly no slouches, either. Looks like this season’s gonna be quite a good one.

About Rory

I enjoy writing, manga, anime and video games, so naturally here on my blog, you will find anime reviews, Nintendo news and other such things that I deem interesting.
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