Like many others, I was initially disappointed when I found out Yuri on Ice was named for two guys named Yuri and not girls’ love. It made sense, too, because Sayo Yamamoto could totally make that show. In retrospect I feel very silly, however, because Yuri on Ice ended up exceeding all of my expectations anyway. Together with Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu it’s only one of two shows that I considered for Anime of the Year 2016, and I still haven’t actually decided which one I like more.
I had some preconceptions about possible choices before I started writing this post. At first I expected that picking the winners would be difficult due to a sheer lack of good options (because I’m watching so few shows right now), but this turned out to be wrong. Then I thought that the choice would be easy due to there only being a few good theme songs this season, but after a bit of thinking, I realised that was incorrect too. There are actually several OPs and EDs that are so good in their own ways that it’s genuinely difficult for me to choose between them. But let’s try anyway!
This is going to be a pretty short one, because as you may remember, I picked up very few shows this season. And while my surprise of the season will end up being an actual honest to god surprise, I did not have to think twice about the disappointment. It’s funny actually, because you’d think that the fewer shows one picks up, the more difficult it is to find one truly disappointing show, but fortunately that is not the case for me, at least not this particular season.
This premiere did not necessarily live up to my expectations as the show I was looking forward to the most of all, but it was by no means a bad first episode. The new time skip (on top of the time skip between the flashback story from Season 1 and the main story) was a bit jarring at first, as was having to listen to Yotarou (or, rather, the new Sukeroku) again, because I don’t really like his voice.
Whoops, ended up taking screenshots of nothing but Yakumo.
Due to a combination of real life obligations, a need for vacation, the fact that the winter seasons are usually more modest than other anime seasons, and because this time there were very few shows that drew my interest based on the synopses, this post is probably going to be unusually short. I only picked up 10 regular TV shows (I will be checking out Fate Grand Order and Dragon Dentist as well), so let’s hope at least some of them are good.
For three quarters of a year, all the way from January until October 2016 – which is when Yuri on Ice started airing – Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu was the only real contender for my Anime of the Year 2016. This didn’t necessarily mean much back when it aired, it was the first season of the year after all, But as time went on and I realised that no other show (aside from the aforementioned Fall 2016 show Yuri on Ice) was coming even close to Rakugo in terms of both my enjoyment and my appreciation of the production side of things, it was becoming clear to me that Rakugo really was something special to me and not just a product of its circumstances (the only other Winter 2016 show I really liked initially, Boku Dake ga Inai Machi, ended up flopping pretty badly). I don’t want to jump the gun and say it was an instant classic, but yeah, that’s kind of what it felt like.
A fairly recent show, Sakamoto desu ga aired in Spring 2016. It’s an adaptation of the manga of the same name, a manga that I had the chance to read before the anime started airing. And if I tell you that I was very excited for the anime, you can probably guess that I really enjoyed reading the manga.