Fall 2015 Spotlight: Surprise of the Season

Overall, this season ended up being better than I expected. My expectations were low, yes, but I still didn’t expect that I’d enjoy so many of the new shows(and the sequels in particular). Young Black Jack and Lupin III were two shows that I was cautiously optimistic about, but they both ended up exceeding my expectations. They aren’t fantastically impressive, though, and neither is Subete ga F ni Naru. However, it’s interesting in its own way. Classic murder mystery stories are less common than one would think. The only new show that really surprised me was the new Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans. After the insanity that was G-Reco, I thought I’d never like a non-UC Gundam show, but here we are. Orphans is everything I wanted Aldnoah Zero to be.

So, the biggest surprises were not the new shows but the sequels, because pretty much every one of the sequels one-upped their predecessors in some way. The new season of GochiUsa has a wonderfully cute ED and I’m generally enjoying it more than the first season. Yuru Yuri is somehow even better than I remember the first two seasons being(seriously, I don’t understand how that’s the case). Owari no Seraph is a sequel of a show only 2 seasons old, but it has improved a lot since the first season. There’s less fooling around and more action and story in the second season, and the visuals are pretty damn impressive. But the most surprising out of all the sequels was…

 

Surprise of the Season: Noragami Aragoto

I thought the first season of Noragami was just fine. It wasn’t spectacular, and the villain was kind of boring. It also tended to flip-flop between story development and random slice-of-life stuff, kind of like the first season of Owari no Seraph, actually. But the 2nd season of Noragami, just like the 2nd season of Seraph, has so far had a much tighter focus and a much faster pacing, so to speak. It’s as if the directors of both the shows had finally gotten the hang of things and managed to craft really good stories.

I was right when I expected Bishamon to be a much more interesting villain than the villain of S1(I can’t even remember what he was called), but I didn’t know just¬†how right I was. I loved the first arc of S2. Yes, it revisited a lot of old elements and flashbacks and stuff like that, and not a lot actually happened in terms of character development, but it was just a really interesting arc overall. Noragami isn’t the best-looking show this time around either, but I think the action scenes look good enough, and the new OP is really fun. The first season of Noragami was fun but flawed. The second season is patched up and actually good, and it manages to be even more fun than the first season. Honestly, I didn’t expect that.

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