Gah, I should have done this weeks ago, but here we are. In less than a week’s time, the Summer 2015 anime season will begin. As of right now I have 28 TV anime on my PTW list for next season. That’s a lot, so I probably won’t be finishing even half of them. But I will try to watch at least one episode of each show so I can give my honest first impressions on all of them. But, before I get to talk about how surprised or disappointed I am by any show, I must first actually have predictions, expectations and hopes. And here they are.
Note: Shows are grouped by the weekday they air on, including the usual late night hours after midnight. So, for instance, a show airing at 2 AM on Wednesday morning would be in the Tuesday category. The list is not necessarily in broadcast order.
Akagami no Shirayuki-hime
When people talk about this show, they keep mentioning two things: The staff, and the studio. To be perfectly honest, I can’t get that excited about the staff. The director and composer don’t seem like particularly perfectly-fitting choices, and the series composer, from what I can see, has more experience with crazy comedies than with shoujo romances. The character designer is no stranger to shoujo, though, which I guess should at least mean nice- and interesting-looking characters. As for the studio, I’m not a huge Bones fanboy. But, seeing how this is the only show they’ll be working on this season, I do expect it to be a pretty good production. Not that I’m a huge expert on the production side of things. As for the show’s story itself, it’s based on Snow White. I don’t really know what to expect from it in that respect.
Teekyuu is Teekyuu. I expect it to be largely like Teekyuu 4, though I would be happy if it turned out to be more like the first 2 seasons. I wasn’t a big fan of the alien or most of the overarching stories in Teekyuu 4.
Jitsu wa Watashi wa
This show piqued my interest with its character designs. Which is not to say that I like them. The faces, and the eyes in particular, don’t look bad, but they look kind of amateurish, especially on the green-haired girl. Looking at the promo art makes me feel sort of gross, but I can’t look away. Anyway, as for the synopsis, this seems like the kind of show that I usually wouldn’t touch with a 10-foot pole. But those goddamn eyes keep drawing me in. I don’t have high hopes for this show, but maybe the weirdness will be somewhat entertaining.
Non Non Biyori Repeat
I expect this to be almost identical to Season 1, which entails both good and bad things. The strength of the series is in its slice of life aspects, especially when it comes to Renge. More Renge is almost surely a good thing. On the flip side, the weakness of the show lies in its comedy. The Hotaru-Komari “relationship” was unnecessarily sexualised and pervy(emphasis on Hotaru being “well-developed” and Komari being less so) for my taste. That said, maybe Season 2 will be different. KyoAni took Tamako Market, refined and improved it, and produced Tamako Love Story. Of course, this is just my opinion and after all, I still liked Season 1, so I won’t be too heartbroken if Season 2 is just more of the same.
Makura no Danshi
I’ll be honest: I’m watching this show as a joke. I’m not interested in the gimmick, nor do I have any expectations that it’ll be entertaining or enjoyable in any way. However… I’m not opposed to the idea of enjoying it. Who knows, maybe it’ll make me feel good or provide some sort of surreally novel experience. Maybe this is art.
I’m not a Madhouse fanboy either, and this is a Light Novel adaptation to boot. Come worst case scenario, I might drop this after only one episode, or even during the first episode. I don’t need another Magical Warfare. The synopsis isn’t the most reassuring thing either. I never got into SAO and Log Horizon bored me. So why am I even trying this out in the first place? Well, because the main character is some sort of magical skeleton. And I must admit that I don’t see that every day. Let’s see how far that carries the show.
Sore ga Seiyuu!
I want to say that I remember hearing about this show ages ago, but apparently the adaptation wasn’t announced until the end of 2014. I may have been thinking of something else. In any case, I’m really interested in this show. It sounds like it could be as good as Shirobako in a best case scenario. I know that probably won’t happen, but I’m excited nonetheless. That said, from the looks of it, it seems like a project with low ambitions. If Anichart wasn’t claiming this to be a show with full-length episodes, I would bet on this being a short. Not that Anichart can’t be wrong, though.
Monster Musume no Iru Nichijou
I haven’t actually read the proper manga, only the original hentai one-shots. So, while I am really looking forward to watching this show, I predict it won’t “excite” me in quite the same way as the original one-shots did. While that will no doubt be a letdown, it’s not like that’s all I want out of the show. With or without actual porn, the gimmick is still pretty interesting. In addition, the series composition and direction are handled by the same people who did Namiuchigiwa no Muromi-san, and I consider that a good thing.
Like Makura no Danshi, this is a show that I’m not actually interested in at all. I expect it to be complete garbage. However, by virtue of being an original anime, it could go in very unexpected directions. It could be surprisingly poignant, or it could have great animation. Actually, forget what I said earlier, I am kind of excited for this, because I have no idea what it’s going to be like.
Okusama ga Seito Kaichou!
“My Wife is the Student Council President” Yup, that sounds like a Light Novel title alright. Surprisingly, though, this is based on a manga. Which means it might actually be funny. The synopsis also mentions something about someone “flinging condoms into the audience”, and condoms in anime actually have a pretty good track record when it comes to being funny. I’m not familiar with the staff so I can’t make guesses about the production, but the fact that the girl main character is played by Ayana Taketatsu is probably a good thing. Yeah, I hope this show is at least a little funny, but I’m not expecting much.
Jokes, sequels and hentai doujin adaptations aside, it seems like there will be at least a few shows next season that stand out in a good way. Gangsta is potentially one of those shows. The art style looks to be more realistic than most shows, and the synopsis makes it seem “gritty” and “dark”. Great. Excellent, in fact. Variety is the spice of life, so regardless if it ends up being good or bad, I’m just happy that shows that look like this still exist.
Kuusen Madoushi Kouhosei no Kyoukan
Why is this show here? I literally cannot remember why I decided to include this show in my list, because I sure as hell am not excited or even neutral about the idea of watching this. A Light Novel adaptation, and not the kind that might be different in a good way. Animated by Diomedea, who are decent but not outstanding in any way. Yeah, this looks like it’s going to be a trainwre- Wait. What’s that? Nao Touyama plays one of the main characters? Ok, I guess it can stay, at least for one episode.
I read the synopsis, but I’m not really sure what this show is supposed to be about. Does the hamster-looking creature in the promo picture bear any relation to the main character, or is the framing coincidental? Is this the main character’s “secret”, or is that also completely unrelated? Both of these questions and many more will probably be answered when I watch the first episode, but until then I really have no idea what to expect from the story. Production-wise, however, this show is a little bit more familiar. One of the scriptwriters and the director worked on Yuru Yuri as well as a few other school comedies, so they’re definitely not strangers to the concept. In this respect, I’m actually a little bit hopeful about the show.
Ranpo Kitan: Game of Laplace
This seems like it’ll be the trainwreck of the season. I haven’t been a fan of the latest NoitaminA shows(don’t get me started on Punchline in particular), Seiji Kishi and Makoto Uezu are directing and scriptwriting respectively(not automatically a bad thing, but I’m not the biggest fan of some of their writing choices), and it’s being produced at Lerche, who are doing a whopping 2 other shows at the same time(Monmusu and Gakkou Gurashi). In addition, if I’m allowed to nitpick, I don’t have many good experiences with horror shows sporting butterfly motifs(looking at you, Pupa, though Red Garden was actually kind of ok). I do still expect something from this, though. It can’t possibly be worse than Plastic Memories.
Joukamachi no Dandelion
Anime Big Brother in an elective monarchy… I guess I haven’t exactly seen that before, unless Mirai Nikki counts. Yeah, like Kuusen Madoushi Long Title I have no memory of putting this on my list. I guess it must have seemed potentially entertaining at the time. The cast includes Ai Kayano, Kana Hanazawa and Yui Ogura, so that’s good. The series composition and direction are handled by the same people who did Bakuman, which I haven’t seen but have heard good things about. Those are pretty much all the straws I can grasp at. I have no real expectations or hopes regarding this show.
When I saw the promo image for this show, I thought “post-apocalyptic school activities” and immediately put it on my list. I did this because the mental image that this gave me is a combination of Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru, Sora no Woto and Now and Then, Here and There. The synopsis also hints at strong emotional themes, and I usually like that kind of stuff. The fact that it’s apparently a mystery/horror show kind of baffles me, though. At first glance I expected it to be comedy/action(maybe) like Yuuki Yuuna, but apparently not. So, I’m very curious and hopeful for this show.
Ushio to Tora
From the director of Hajime no Ippo and Trigun comes an adaptation of a ‘90s manga. Yeah, this seems like it’ll be pretty sweet. Studio MAPPA will be responsible for the animation, so I imagine it’ll look pretty good. I’ll let people who are more familiar with the manga talk about their expectations of the story, characters and acting, but I can say that I’m fairly excited about Tora being played by Rikiya Koyama. Anyway, in conclusion, please be better than Parasyte, please be better than Parasyte, please be better than Parasyte…
Miss Monochrome: The Animation 2nd Season
Colour me surprised. I didn’t expect Miss Monochrome to get a sequel, especially not after almost 2 years. But here we are, and I couldn’t be happier. The original short was adorable and funny, so I’m definitely up for more.
Another short that I’m excited about! This one’s not a sequel, but it’s based on a manga by the author of Kiniro Mosaic, and that alone is a good sign. I’m a bit worried about some of the staff(mainly the fact that the director apparently hasn’t directed anything else), but hopefully that shouldn’t affect my enjoyment too much. After all, it’s a short, and how badly can you screw up a short?
Gate: Jieitai Kanochi nite, Kaku Tatakeri
I don’t know much about this show. The first promo images gave the impression that it’d be like Girls und Panzer, but apparently that really won’t be the case. Part of the synopsis, “Youji Itami, a JSDF officer as well as a 33-year-old otaku, was appointed as the leader of the Team.”, does however hint at the demographic this show will be aimed at, as well as what kind of tropes it will have. I don’t want to generalise too much and berate all shows with otaku main characters, but I can’t deny that it’s pretty off-putting. That said, I expect this show to be either surprisingly decent or disgusting. I don’t expect it to be boring.
Classroom ☆ Crisis
I expected this show to be purely about schoolgirls and classrooms based on the early promos, but just like with Gate, there’s apparently a lot more to it. Sci fi and guns and pilots, according to the synopsis and later promos. Unlike Gate, however, I’m actually looking forward to this show, and I’m genuinely hoping it’ll be good. These hopes may be partially due to the title of the show resembling Rolling ☆ Girls, because I really wanted to like that show.
Kangoku Gakuen (Prison School)
This is it. This is the show I’m the most excited about. Without resorting to the boring and unhelpful “read the manga!”(which I do recommend if the show looks at all interesting to you), the most I can say about this show is that it’s like a BDSM parody of the first season of Prison Break. It’s over-the-top in how fetishistic it is, and the prose is as flowery as a botanical garden. The art in the manga is amazing, but the anime will undoubtedly look less impressive. Not that I will mind as long as the writing and direction are on point, which seems like a given due to those aspects being handled by Michiko Yokote and Tsutomu Mizushima respectively. For the uninitiated, the two previously worked together on Shirobako. This, coupled with the fact that Kiyoshi will be played by Hiroshi Kamiya and Hana will be played by Kana Hanazawa, just excites me further. Even if the animation ends up being lacking, the voice acting will make my day every time. Friday is going to be a good day.
The new collaboration between Jun Maeda and P.A. Works. The synopsis mentions a meeting between a boy and a girl as well as school life and super powers. This reminds me of Angel Beats(sans the super powers it reminds me of everything else Jun Maeda has done), but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. I liked Angel Beats when I watched it(I’ll even watch the new OVA when it comes out), so I feel like I could probably enjoy Charlotte as well. That is, if it wasn’t for the fact that my thoughts immediately gravitate back to Plastic Memories and how much I disliked its attempt at meshing comedy with seriousness. So, while I am hopeful about Charlotte, I can’t help being a little doubtful as well.
Gatchaman Crowds Insight
I’m less excited about this than about Prison School only because this is a sequel and I know approximately what I’m going to get. Gatchaman Crowds was a fantastic show in many ways, and I can’t wait for it to return. In fact, a prequel “Episode 0” titled Gatchaman Crowds Insight: Inbound has already aired, and I want to watch it as soon as I can. This is probably going to be one of my favourites of the season.
Rokka no Yuusha
Returning to shows that I don’t know much about, here’s… whatever this is. It looks pretty generic and boring and- I’m just kidding! Rokka no Yuusha actually looks kind of interesting to me. The “heroes saving the world” angle is pretty standard, but the mystery element surrounding the “extra hero” sounds fun. It is apparently based on a Light Novel, so I’ve lowered my expectations accordingly, but I do remain hopeful. For what it’s worth, though, it looks better than all the other LN adaptations on my list.
Dragon Ball Super
I doubt this series requires any introduction. I haven’t watched any Dragon Ball in years, but every time there’s a related announcement, it gets my attention. I didn’t watch Kai 2014 or Battle of the Gods, but this time it’s a TV series with a new and original story. And it will apparently have 100 episodes. Yeah, I have to see what this looks like. I don’t expect much more than a few moments of pleasant nostalgia, nor do I care enough to hope for more than that, but whatever. I guess it won’t hurt to try.
Another short. This time with a very distinct and moderately creepy face. It feels like the main character is staring into my soul. The black and white art on the manga cover is charming, but the added colours in the promo image are a bit too much. What about the story, though? Eh, I don’t really care, as long as it’s cute and/or funny.
Well, I was excited about this… until I found out that it apparently “looks like shitty traced-over CG, and the pre-screening of Episode 1 was cancelled due to production issues.”(source) I don’t know if all of that is actually true, but it seems like this is going to be a disaster. Unfortunate. Anyway, I’m going to abstain from speculating too much. I’ll elaborate on how it looks in my first impressions post.
Super extra surprise maybe category!
Senki Zesshou Symphogear GX: Believe in Justice and Hold a Determination to Fist.
If I manage to finish the first two seasons in the next 2 weeks, I will most likely watch this as well. This seems like the kind of show that will be very fun to watch weekly.
Wooser no Sono Higurashi Mugen Hen
Same as with Symphogear: If I finish Season 2 in time, I’ll probably watch this. But, considering this is a short, that shouldn’t be too difficult.