Summer 2017 First Impressions: Part 8

Hajimete no Gal

This is trash. That’s not that uncommon, actually. There’s a lot of trash out there, like those dime-a-dozen fantasy shows with near-omnipotent main characters. This is not that a fantasy show, though. It’s about a guy who is a self-professed loser losing a bet of some kind and being forced to confess his feelings to a “gal”.

Summer 2017 Hajimete no Gal

Yes, this show is.

That’s not automatically a recipe for disaster, though, because teenagers are notoriously horny, and I think good stories can be written about people going through puberty and learning about their sexuality, but this show is not one of those stories. It’s just panty shots, guys being pervy, guys reading porn mags, and guys being deathly insecure about not having had sex. And jokes about all of this. This is not something that interests me.

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Summer 2017 First Impressions: Part 7

Centaur no Nayami

This is it, this is the show that will fill my moe quota for the season. Aside from the scene with the boy committing election fraud in order to trick a girl into kissing him (I realise that may not sound like it makes much sense), the whole first episode was very sweet, cute and funny. I also like the fact that the characters are, well, not hominids, because it opens up a whole new world of possibilities when it comes to characterisation and conflict. I’m also glad that this show seems to be portraying this aspect more wholesomely than Monster Musume.

Summer 2017 Centaur no Nayami

Cute floppy ears.

There was some (maybe well-founded) concern about the animation quality of the show because it’s being animated by Haoliners Animation, but I didn’t find much to complain about in the first episode. Yeah, it’s not fantastic-looking, but it’s not bad either. It’s good enough for me.

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Summer 2017 First Impressions: Part 6

Action Heroine Cheer Fruits

The first scene made me think this show was going to be about characters that do product placement while dressed like heroes, but that turned out not to be the case. Sure, the product placement heroine turned out to be important to the story of the first episode, and she’ll probably be a recurring character, but the real heroines of the episode are the high school students, who basically spend the entire episode practicing and working toward putting on an action show for children. That may not seem like much, but I found it very endearing and sweet, and it’s the main reason I want to keep watching.

Summer 2017 Action Heroine Cheer Fruits

Iconic.

The show doesn’t just share the “hero” theme with tokusatsu hero shows, it also draws elements from them, the most noticeable element in the first episode being the music, which would probably not fit any other kind of modern anime. In this way the show also reminds me of Samurai Flamenco, and that’s a very good thing.

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Summer 2017 First Impressions: Part 5

Hitorijime My Hero

This is a story about a delinquent high schooler who used to hang out in bad company. The bad company finds him once again just as he starts high school, but fortunately he is bailed out by a tough teacher. He starts considering this teacher his hero. And according to the synopsis, he eventually even starts having feelings for him.

Summer 2017 Hitorijime My Hero

Tbh I’d probably fall in love too.

It’s kind of unusual for a synopsis to even implicitly tell of romance between two men, so I’m very interested in seeing where this show will go. Visually and humour-wise, it’s not the most impressive show ever, but it’s not bad either.

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Summer 2017 First Impressions: Part 4

Nanamaru Sanbatsu

This seems to be a very standard kind of sports show, in that it starts with an eccentric guy advertising his high school club, scaring away most people but managing to pique the interest of the main character, and another character. The main character is new to the sport in question but he does have a set of appropriate skills that he has acquired over his middle school years as a librarian. The other character, also apparently a main character, is more experienced.

Summer 2017 Nanamaru Sanbatsu

Not a bad-looking show!

The sport in question is quiz bowl, and in addition to it being a novel concept as far as the shows I’ve seen so far go, the thing I really like about it is that the other main character is a girl. Usually in (physical) sports shows the members of the team are all the same gender (for historic and rule reasons), and that’s kind of unfortunate. But this is different, and that in itself is interesting enough for me to continue this show. I guess it also helps that it looks good and that the quizzes were exciting.

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Summer 2017 First Impressions: Part 3

Senki Zesshou Symphogear AXZ

Well, it took a while to get subtitles (Crunchyroll please license this), but I can finally write about this sequel that I was highly excited for. Symphogear is one of my favourite series of all time (even though GX was lacking in some respects), so I’d been looking forward to AXZ for quite some time.

Summer 2017 Symphogear

This is new!

And the first episode of AXZ was… ok? I found the plot and the storytelling of the first episode very confusing and disconnected, to the point where I don’t really understand what kinds of themes and points the show is trying to go for. I did not have this problem with G or GX, so it’s kind of disappointing. Hopefully the show gets more straightforward from here on, because its strengths are kind of dependent on that.

Visually, though, the first episode looked fantastic. It compared favourably even to the first episode of GX, which was a very fun flashy action sequence. I’m not sold on the songs yet, but it always takes some time for me, so I’m not worried. This is probably going to be a very entertaining season of Symphogear.

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Summer 2017 First Impressions: Part 2

Kakegurui

These kinds of shows, where the story takes place in a school with a gimmick and where the hierarchies play a huge role in the characterisation, are not my favourite. It’s not that I dislike Kakegurui and its own specific elements, I just happen to be very tired of shows like this, and that certainly affected my enjoyment of the first episode. Going forward, I don’t see myself having much interest in the story or the characters, which means I may have to struggle to keep watching the show.

Summer 2017 Kakegurui

True, probably.

That said, however, Kakegurui is darn stylish, and the style makes it exciting. The focus on gambling combined with the style is very reminiscent of the D’Arby arcs in Jojo Part 3, which is a very good thing. In addition, the OP reminds me of the Maria Holic OP, which I also like. Basically, at this point Kakegurui coasts by on style and style alone. I hope it develops some other interesting aspects with time, but the style goes a long way at least for now.

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