It is time, once again, I think, to preview the upcoming season. I will point out that I started writing this on the10th of September, so if it comes out late, it is entirely my fault for being lazy. Anyway, same structure as last time: I’ll be categorising shows based on the days of the week that they air on – in the EEST time zone that is, which means all the days will probably also be correct everywhere in the US and the rest of Europe(sorry, Oceania) – starting with “the day the season begins”, which is Thursday in this case. Actually, I now realise that I started with Monday last time even though the season started on a Wednesday, so I guess this is a new thing. I’d start with Monday, but since I have nothing on Tuesday and Wednesday anyway, this way I won’t have to jump from Monday to Thursday.
It looks like I will be picking up 21 new shows, but interestingly, none of them air on Tuesday or Wednesday. This both gladdens me – I will have time on Tuesdays and Wednesdays to work on my backlog and stuff like that – and saddens me, because doing the actual first impressions is going to be hell when the shows are that concentrated.
Lupin III – L’avventura Italiana
I don’t know much about the Lupin franchise, so I really have no idea what to expect from this. However, the franchise has a lot of history and many famous instalments like The Castle of Cagliostro and The Woman Called Fujiko Mine. I’ve seen neither, but I’ve wanted to watch them for a while now, so I decided to pick up this new series as an appetiser of sorts. If it’s good, then that’s great and I made the right choice in picking it up, and if it’s not, then that’s okay as well, because at least I’ll get to know the characters and the premise a little bit better.
As for the staff, I don’t know why I’m actually surprised to see so many old-timers on the list. I expected this to be the kind of reimagining/reboot that is given to a younger team of directors, but no, there are a number of veterans working on this. Whether that’s for better or for worse remains to be seen, but I’m definitely interested.
Young Black Jack
On the topic of old franchises, here’s another one: An adaptation of the 2011 prequel to Osamu Tezuka’s 1973 manga series Black Jack. This is really interesting. The premise of the original manga seems like a much less cynical House, presumably with more shounen action. Which is actually a pretty interesting premise, and not one I can honestly say I’ve seen in anime before(unless Kuuchuu Buranko counts).
As with Lupin, the staff working on Young Black Jack is not from the youngest generation. The director, Mitsuko Kase, has been directing (mostly individual episodes) since the early 1980s, and the scriptwriter Ryousuke Takahashi is the original creator of Armored Trooper Votoms. Again, I don’t know if this is a good thing necessarily, but I expect this to be somewhat different from most mainstream stuff.
Subete ga F ni Naru: The Perfect Insider
This show is a total enigma to me. I have no idea what it’s going to be about, and the synopsis only says so much. What does the F stand for? What’s with the Escher painting on the promo image? How is it going to differ from other murder mysteries? It’s not going to be another Ranpo Kitan Game of Laplace, is it? So yeah, while the genre itself is something that I love, I can’t get excited for this show because I know next to nothing about it.
What I do know is that it’s originally created by the same person who wrote The Sky Crawlers, the director is going to be the guy who directed Sora no Woto (among other things), and the script will be written by the writer of Gatchaman Crowds. These are all very good things as far as I’m concerned. To be honest, I’d rather have more Sora no Woto and continuing Gatchaman, but I’ll take what I can get. In my eyes, this show has potential.
Hacka Doll the Animation
I don’t understand this show. I know it’s going to be a series of shorts and that it’s based on some sort of web app. The question is, why? And why did they get Trigger to do it? Trigger did do Ninja Slayer, which was also a short(and also maybe not due for an adaptation), but I wonder why they’d want to do something this low profile right after. Maybe they’re working on a secret project or training new animators, or perhaps they’re just taking what they can get to keep the lights on for now. I honestly don’t know, but Hacka Doll still seems like a weird choice.
What else is there to say about it? Well, the voice actresses are fairly new. Miyu Takagi is most known for her work on Wake Up, Girls!, which is actually the case for the two other actresses, Kaya Okuno and Nanami Yamashita, as well. I find that both interesting and positive, because I like the flair added to shows by fresh and new voices. Also, this gives me an additional reason to watch the show beyond “It’s Trigger”.
Miss Monochrome: The Animation 3
Confused readers, take heed: You are not hallucinating. A day after this post originally went up, I realised that because Miss Monochrome S2 aired during Summer, I didn’t pay attention to it in the Fall Season chart. My mind automatically dismissed it as a leftover, like Ushio and Tora. But, because I wrote about Teekyuu 6, I must write about this as well. Otherwise I won’t be able to get it out of my mind.
I’m really happy Miss Monochrome is getting another sequel. I wasn’t the biggest fan of the first season, but the second season has been really fun so far. The references have been funny and actually cool-looking(especially in the case of the Initial D reference), and I like the semi-ongoing crossover with Wooser. Also, on a more conceptual level, I think the idea of a voice actress having her own mascot get an anime adaptation is pretty cool. I don’t know if I want it to become a trend – Suzakinishi was a disaster – but Miss Monochrome is a great little show.
Monsters. Mystery. Maybe even horror. And an anime-original story to boot. Fantastic! Now, please don’t screw it up. Shows like this usually end up either tone-deaf or as dry and boring as regular coarse sand. Sadly, the synopsis on MAL offers no clues, because it’s obviously translated by a machine. The promo image also concerns me, because the human in the picture looks… off, somehow. It could be intentional, but it looks like hasty or inexperienced artwork. So, I’ll be watching it purely for the genres. But I’m not very hopeful.
So, who’s working on it, then? Well, the scriptwriter has only worked on really odd shows like Kurayami Santa and Yami Shibai, as well as the upcoming(also a Fall season show) rotoscoped horror anime Kowabon. The director, on the other hand, has only worked as an episode director on Yami Shibai, which I know nothing about. However, they did manage to get Tomokazu Sugita to play the main character, which is pretty cool.
Gotta fill the LN quota for the season, I guess… Oh! It’s by the creator of the Raildex series. And animated by J.C.Staff, who did the adaptations of Raildex. This sounds interesting. You know, maybe it won’t suffer from the usual LN issues. Maybe it’ll actually pull off the mecha military action story promised by the synopsis. Great, let’s take a closer look at the staff…
It’s from the director of… Ikkitousen! Don’t mind, don’t mind, maybe the writing will save it… Series composition by the original creator of Seikon no Qwaser. Yeah, I think it’s safe to say that my hopes have been thoroughly deflated. I’m gonna stop wasting time on this and just try to get it over with as quickly as possible when it eventually airs.
The first sequel of the season! Yeah, sure, Lupin and Young Black Jack could be classified as prequels, but Noragami aired recently enough for the sequelness to actually be relevant to me. Anyway, I liked the first Noragami. It wasn’t my favourite the season it aired, and I think one of the storylines dragged on for too long, but It wasn’t a bad at all. I liked the premise, the themes and the setup, and I actually ended up really liking the final episode. At the time, I actually wanted a sequel.
And now that the sequel is actually real and upcoming, I realise that I still want it. Apparently the main focus will be on Bishamon this time. I didn’t like her as much as some of the other characters, but I think she lends herself to a more morally ambiguous conflict better than some random outside evil guy like in the first season. I’m excited.
Garo: Guren no Tsuki
So, I did try the first Garo anime, but it just came off as edgy and shoddy to me. And the CG looked awful. However, since then I’ve watch half a season of the original tokusatsu show, and I quite liked it. And now, because I hear the new anime series will be taking place in an alternate setting compared to the first one, I feel like this could be a fresh start.
And apparently it’s a fresh start production-wise as well. It’s still being produced over at MAPPA, but as far as I can see, the writing and direction team is not the same as the one for the first anime. I assume the reason for that is because the original team are working on the Garo movie, but I digress. The new staff seems competent enough, even though I’m not familiar with most of the people working on it. Anyway, if this show ends up being disappointing, I can always try the first one again.
Now we’re getting to the really good stuff. Owarimonogatari is by far the show I’m most excited for. I’m so excited about it that I can’t really believe it’s actually going to start airing soon. I have a feeling that Owarimonogatari will expand upon the things about Second Season that I found most interesting(beside the whole Nadeko case, of course): Ougi and all that memory and darkness stuff. Well, it’s not just a feeling, the PV kind of confirms it. So yeah, colour me excited.
Staff-wise, there are a few changes and additions. The new character, Sodachi, will be voiced by Marina Inoue. I don’t think she’s done any roles in the past that I’ve found particularly interesting, barring Chiri Kitsu from SZS of course, but I am a fan of her voice, and she does have a lot of experience. I expect I’ll like her work. As with Hanamonogatari and Tsukimonogatari, the music will be composed by Kei Haneoka, not Satoru Kousaki who did Bake, Nise and Second Season. While I happen to be a huge fan of Kousaki’s work – a few tracks from the Bake and Nise OSTs are unforgettable – I really liked Haneoka’s work in the two OVA series. I can’t wait to see(hear) what he comes up with next.
Ok, so this is the other weird horror thing that’s being written by the same writer as Kagewani. Looking more closely, I’m finding more similarities with Kurayami Santa and Yami Shibai: Kowabon will be animated by ILCA, the same studio responsible for the two aforementioned shows, as well as Doamaiger D, which was a very retro-esque mecha show that aired a while ago.
So, if I had to guess, I’d say that ILCA is some sort of group of experimental artists and directors. On one hand, this excites me because I did like what I saw of Doamaiger D, and I heard interesting things about Kurayami Santa, but on the other hand, I have a sneaking suspicion that it will be very difficult to actually find a way to watch Kowabon. I do not expect anyone to simulcast it. So that’s kind of unfortunate, but at least Kowabon will probably look fairly unique.
Shingeki! Kyojin Chuugakkou
This is stupid. It looks stupid. The official synopsis looks stupid. This whole concept is stupid. And yet, I will watch it, because it’s some form of Attack on Titan. To be honest, I would rather have more of the actual series. And to be even more honest, I’ve kind of stopped caring about the whole franchise. It’s been so long since the first season that I can’t muster up the energy to wish for a sequel. This, though… I don’t even know what this spin-off is, but I’ll watch it and probably hate it.
Then again, Carnival Phantasm exists, and some people love it. So maybe this can do the same thing. I mean, they even got Linked Horizon to do the OP, which is pretty funny. I’m just hoping the episodes won’t be full-length, because that’d probably be too long.
Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka??
I recently finished the first season of Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka, which I had dropped 7 episodes in while it was airing. The reason for dropping it was that I didn’t think it was as funny as comparable moe shows. I still don’t, I think it was average at best, but I did manage to finish it, and I’m not terribly opposed to the idea of watching more of it.
Because while it isn’t as funny as, say, Kinmosa, Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka is still a very cute show. If it wasn’t for Yuru Yuri, I could probably safely say that GochiUsa S2 is going to be one of the highlights of me week. As it stands, however, it’s going to have some fierce competition.
Owari no Seraph: Nagoya Kessen-hen
Ah, Owari no Seraph, aka that show you only watched because of Shinoa. No, it was actually a pretty enjoyable show, at least for me. The story was cool and it had some nice visual effects. And the OP rocked. So I’m actually quite looking forward to the second season. The first season ended with a kind of cliffhanger.
So, because I’m more than lukewarm about this show, I’m extra aware of the possibility that Wit Studio might screw it up somehow. Attack on Titan had production issues, as did Rolling Girls. And lately we’ve even had big-name studios like Ufotable experience production issues. I’m not exactly sure about how this production stuff really works, but I am concerned. The first season didn’t really suffer from huge dips in quality(except during a few battle scenes), but the possibility exists.
Kidou Senshi Gundam: Tekketsu no Orphans
I’m not going to lie. I’m not the biggest fan of the Gundam franchise. I’ve only watched a few instalments, and my least favourite one is the 0079 movie series, i.e. the recap/remake of the original series. So when I say I’m quite excited for Tekketsu no Orphans, that means something. Firstly, the synopsis makes it sound vaguely Northern European, which interests me. Secondly, if I understand correctly, it’s not UC, so I don’t have to feel bad about not having seen Z, ZZ or Unicorn yet.
More Interesting, however, is the staff of the show. Series composition by Mari Okada, who isn’t very known for writing mecha, and direction by Tatsuyuki Nagai who, while somewhat experienced with mecha, is most known for directing shows like AnoHana and Toradora. The fact that Tomino is not working on Tekketsu is also a positive thing, because while I loved how G-Reco looked, it was impossible to follow for me.
Komori-san wa Kotowarenai!
Up until recently I didn’t know that this was going to have 3-minute-long episodes. After reading the synopsis, though, I think it’s probably for the best, because it sounds like it’s going to be the kind of show that relies on one gag over and over again, just with slightly different situations every time.
And judging from some of the manga panels and covers, it seems like some of the gags are going to be at least slightly perverse in nature. I mean, come on, how can a show have a main character who can’t decline request and then not have dirty jokes? So, I imagine I’ll end up enjoying this show only because it’s short. Unless it’s like Teekyuu, in which case I will love it.
So, uh, judging by the promo image, is this going to be this season’s Punchline? Or is it aiming to be Gurren Lagann? Well, in either case, it seems to me that it will not succeed. I mean, sure, it could end up being great, but there are just so many details about it that annoy me. Felia’s character design reminds me too much of No Game No Life, and the synopsis makes it sound like they’re trying really hard to write a Light Novel-esque fantasy plot for some reason.
Browsing the staff list didn’t assuage my suspicion. I don’t recognise the directors or the scriptwriter, but I do recognise some of the shows they’ve worked on(not necessarily all of them together): Infinite Stratos, Absolute Duo, etc. Some mecha and sci-fi in there, but also a lot of LN-y stuff. Let’s hope this show becomes the exception that proves the point rather than the point itself.
Concrete Revolutio: Choujin Gensou
Correction: This is going to be the new Punchline. Or the new Kekkai Sensen(hopefully not on a similar release schedule), or maybe Rolling Girls(hopefully more like the first 2 episodes and less like the last 4 episodes). Anyway, never mind that. Apparently it’s going to be a show about people, monsters and aliens with super powers. I’m tempted to use that as justification to label this as fantasy/sci-fi LN-y drivel, but when I think about it I actually have had decent experiences with super power-themed shows lately. Kekkai Sensen being the most recent one. So I’m actually in the mood for this. Yay.
Staff-wise there are more good news. The studio responsible for the animation will be Bones, while the director and scriptwriter will be Seiji Mizushima and Shou Aikawa, respectively. You could argue that Mizushima is not the greatest director on Earth, but I did like parts of Expelled from Paradise. And Aikawa is fairly well-known, as far as I know. Then again, he did write the script for Chaos Dragon, but I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt when it comes to this show.
One Punch Man
Speaking of super powers, here’s possibly the most extreme and awesome superhero story in animanga. Ok, there are probably more extreme ones, but OPM is amazing. Disclaimer, I read the manga and I love it. Is my bias showing? Yeah, I have a feeling this will overshadow all the other action/adventure shows of the season. If Owarimonogatari wasn’t airing this season, OPM would be the show I’d be most excited about.
The staff is also pretty excitement-inducing. Shingo Natsume is directing, and based on the PV it seems he’s not going to want OPM to be outshined by Space Dandy in terms of animation and style. I’m also excited about hearing the cast, especially Aoi Yuuki as Tatsumaki and Makoto Furukawa as Saitama. I really can’t wait.
High School Star Musical
An all-male idol-esque musical story? Sure. I’ve actually been looking for something like this for a while now. I’ll get to Shounen Hollywood eventually, but until then, this is a good place to start, I think. I think the last all-male show I tried watching was Bouei-bu, so it’s time to dip into it again in general as well.
I’m not familiar with anything the director, Shunsuke Tada, has done before, but I assume that some of you will be delighted to hear that he’s the director of Kuroko no Basket. I know nothing about the studio, C-Station, either, but what I do know is that the series composer, Sayaka Harada, wrote the script for Tamayura: More Aggressive, which I liked for the most part. In conclusion, I guess the staff could be worse. This is looking decent so far.
Oh come on, do I really have to write about Teekyuu 6? It airs every season and it just keeps going. It’s insane, and it never changes. Ok, so what do I expect out of Season 6? Uhhhh, more of the same, I guess? I wish there would be less Tomarin and more tennis, but I assume it’ll end up being the other way around. Still, I’ll watch it. There is literally no reason not to watch Teekyuu.
Ok, the staff hasn’t changed either, so it’s pointless to write about it. However, what I did find interesting was that it’s basically created by one guy, Shin Itagaki. He directs, writes scripts, designs characters, directs episodes, and in the beginning he also wrote the storyboards, did the key animation AND the in-between animation. What a guy! Oh, and he’s also the guy who directed and did key animation for OP2 of Bakemonogatari. In retrospect, this makes a huge amount of sense.
Yuru Yuri San☆Hai!
Halleluja! It finally happened. We got a new season of Yuru Yuri. This is the show that will overshadow GochiUsa for me. There’s no question. A while ago I thought my feelings for Yuru Yuri were clouded by the fact that it had been so long since I’d seen Season 2 that I was misremembering. But no. The new OVA, Nachuyachumi(as well as the extra episodes, Nachuyachumi+), confirmed that I still love the series.
Staff-wise there are a few big changes from Season 2. The director, Hiroyuki Hata, is new to the series, as is the series composer Makoto Fukami. The chief animation director and character designer is still Motohiro Taniguchi, though, so at least the show will probably look the same as it always did. Speaking of which, the responsible studio this time is TYO Animation instead of Dogakobo. Well, I’m exaggerating a bit when I say these people are new. They all worked on either Nachuyachumi, Nachuyachumi+, or both. So I doubt there will be any unpleasant surprises.