Summer is just around the corner. The intense heat, the sound of cicadas, and the blistering sands of cool beaches are upon us! But before we enjoy our vacation, let’s see what we loved, hated, and felt something in-between
Danna ga Nani o Itteiru ka Wakaranai Ken 2-sure-me
Airdate: Friday – 01:00 JST (GMT+9)
Subtitle Group: HorribleSubs
Consensus Rating: 7/10
Nick: Short, sweet, funny, and a nice watch while waiting for other shows to finish downloading. I wouldn’t mind an S3 actually.
Dungeon ni Deai Motomeru no wa Machgaiteru Darou ka?
Nick: While the Hestia Hype gives this one a bad rep, I had no glaring issues with DanMachi as I enjoyed it a lot. It was a pretty solid fantasy adventure anime that I’d like to see more of. Aiz best girl as well. 8/10
Deven: Now what do you get when you combine some good old SAO feels with the good growth of a protagonist? The answer is Danmachi. Danmachi had a very good SAO feel to it but what made it different is that Bell isn’t a natural from the beginning like Kirito. He struggles to get to the places he gets to even though gets there quickly because of his ability, Realis Phrase. All in all, I love this anime right now since it combine some good comedy with some epic battle scenes. You can’t say that you didn’t think Bell was awesome when he killed that minataur by himself.
Fate/Stay Night Unlimited Blade Works
Deven: a good season. The epic action, the ideals and the feels. I am so sad with Illya’s death…I’m just crying at the episode. But Ring the Bell in the Silence was really awesome then again Kalafina is always awesome when you put them and Fate together. The battles against Archer and Gilgamesh and the Emiya Remix were epic. I’d have to say this is the best Fate adaptation right now. Let’s see if Heaven’s Feel can take the throne.
Andrew: Perhaps the biggest problem I have with Ufotable’s unlimited blade works route remake is twofold. Firstly it is a story that I already know which is a problem in an anime which such a strong story focus, yes the combat sequences are beautifully animated but I find myself taken out of it a bit by the fact that I already know the outcome of any given fight which drops it down to the level of your typical shonen anime where no matter who the protagonist is fighting, he will be able to pull some hitherto unknown power out of the hat and always win. Secondly this anime has the misfortune to be in a position where comparisons to Fate/Zero are inevitable and the latter, in my humble opinion, is at least slightly superior in most ways. Perhaps this much is inevitable when Fate/Stay Night is a visual novel featuring H scenes and Fate/Zero is a light novel pushing the boundaries on a proven concept but this doesn’t change the results. HOWEVER, one thing that I have neglected to say is that I did thoroughly enjoy watching Fate/Stay Night UBW, the fact that it is not quite as good as Fate/Zero does not make it “bad” in any sense of the word and complaining about having another well-animated, well-choreographed, and well-told instalment of the fate series is like complaining that you have only won three quarters of a million pounds on the lottery rather than the full million; complaining is being entitled.
Grisaia no Rakuen
Nick: I dropped this one as I wasn’t even really that into the first season that much and Yuuji’s character annoyed the fuck outta me most of the time. I hate Gary Stu types and his type fit the bill exactly. Plus it wasn’t that exciting to watch either. Just him doing his stuff and a bunch of cock hungry girls wanting a piece of him. More or less that’s why I dropped this one.
Nick: I’d try to spice up why I dropped this, but put plainly: it was boring as hell. The story was pretty terrible, characters were rather bland, the action was so-so, and it just wasn’t all that interesting after a good 4 eps.
Mitzuka: Why is it so difficult to make quality material out of online games? The show’s premise is promising, the staff is fantastic, the source material is an amazing game, yet the anime is just…bad. It didn’t even get a 2nd episode for me.
Hello! Kiniro Mosaic
Nick: Taking all the best points from season 1 and building on them, Hello!! KinMosa is a true masterpiece. With loveable characters, great music, well placed humor and a charming vibe, this one is among my top favorites of the spring season and one of my highest recommended slice of life anime too. Hello!! KinMosa hits all the right points and really brings back the feeling that watching anime should be this much fun.
Mitzuka: the second season of Kiniro Mosaic is, to put it bluntly, boring. Comparing it to the first season, it’s basically the same thing. The same fluff, cuteness, and 4-koma nonsense. The saying “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” rings true as the show isn’t, in any way, bad. However, with nothing new, it makes it less memorable.
Chris: If you watched Kiniro Mosaic’s first season, then you know what to expect. Hello! Kiniro Mosaic offered the same things as the first series: a cute, fun, slice-of-life series. However, this time around it didn’t maintain the same charm as its predecessor. Like retelling the same joke over again, it felt a bit flat the second time around. That doesn’t mean it was not an enjoyable experience, because I did enjoy this season. However, it lacked the creativity that I expected it to have. In the end, I found myself wishing for something a little…more
Andrew: Can you really take anything I have to say about this show as unbiased? A slice of life show featuring a cast with a sizable British component and scenes of the beautiful English countryside? No, no you cannot, but if this show isn’t adorable then I am a potted plant. I vividly remember the opening scenes of the first season set in London and just how excited I became (they even got the types of trains accurate!) and now we are into the second season and all I can say is that my adoration of this show has not waned. On a more serious reviewing note though, I would like to offer my praise to the staff as they have done a good job of changing up enough things to keep it fresh. At the end of the first season we saw the reorganisation of their schools classes which served to facilitate conversations with less typical groups of the characters. They have spent more time flashing out characters who were only in the background of the first season and have introduced Kuzehashi Sensei, who I find very endearing, as an entirely new character who manages to undergo quite a bit of character development (I know! Character development in a moe, slice of life show!) and makes a very good double act for Karen and her antics. As for my closing thoughts; “right that was season two, season three please?”.
Nick: From start to finish this was always going to be my Anime of the Season, and KyoAni certainly brought their A+ game and then some. From its absolutely gorgeous art, to the stellar OST, dynamic characters, wonderfully executed plot, and a charming vibe, Euphonium is one that’ll stay with me for quite some time. By far their best since Hyouka, and my new all time favorite from KyoAni. S2 please!
Mitzuka: Let’s begin with what I didn’t like. As a gamer and a 3d artist, post processing effects is good on the right amount. Hibike! Euphonium has too many blurry effects. Just the right amount can make a scene look vibrant and sometimes even realistic. Another is the ending. While I will not spoil, the ending is very similar to the first season of Free! where it ended safe with few questions asked, simultaneously baiting that a second season is possible. This is a weak ending mainly due to the simple fact that they could have ended it in a way that will leave the viewers wanting more. Other than that, this is the best show Kyoto Animation has produced since Kyoukai no Kanata
Chris: Hibike Euphonium was my favorite series this season. It was everything I wanted in a KyoAni series and delivered where it should have. It was well-paced mix of drama, comedy, and music. The artwork was fantastic and the character designs were even better. My only problem with the show was the lack of characterization in Asuka Tanaka. The series teased us with hints about how we weren’t seeing her true feelings the whole time, but never let us in to see those feelings. Hopefully this is addressed in a follow-up season. Also, there are some characters I’d like to see more of and to see some relationships evolve further. All in all, KyoAni gave us a fantastic series and it’s probably their best series in a long time.
Nick: Pretty much the same reason as Gunslinger Stratos, give or take a few details. The Tokyo ESP vibe also killed this one for me; that was one I’d rather not relive anytime soon or ever again.
Mikagura Gakuen Kumikyoku
Nick: After a good 7 eps this had to go. The fun wasn’t there anymore and the characters weren’t good either. Not even the yuri was enough to keep me hanging around.
Mitzuka: Here is an example of taking a source material from Nico Nico Douga songs and making a huge mess out of it. Like Mekakucity Actors, the premise of the show had promise, however it greatly suffered from its poor pacing and characters that could have made more sense if it weren’t for the pacing.
Nick: Best girl war aside, this season wasn’t the most plot heavy and honestly that annoyed me. But looking at this not from a plot perspective, it was a fairly solid show with great voice acting, music, animation and humor. If only the plot were on point with the rest of it I’d enjoyed this second season a lot more. Oh yeah, and if Haru didn’t show up either.
Tsuyuki: Nisekoi: was disappointing. I go over this more in my review of the whole series, but it was disappoinitng. I went as far as to telling some people it’s crap compared to the first season, and I don’t really feel as if going back on that is necisarily true. As of now I see Nisekoi:’s relationship to Nisekoi the same as Chunnibyou Ren’s relationship to Chunnibyou. The first season was remarkable and honestly made me enjoy it more than I thought something of that genre could make me feel, but then it added a new love interest for the male MC and while it gave a little bit of back story to how one of the female MCs met the main male character, it was ultimately an unnecisary biproduct of the original show that you would honestly get more enjoyment out of if you didn’t know it existed. By itself Nisekoi: wasn’t terrible, it was just another romcom with nothing spectacular going for it. However this was meant to be a sequel, and as a sequel it failed. If Nisekoi doesn’t continue beyond this season I’ll be severely disappointed.
Andrew: As I said in my initial impressions for the season, I’ve long since given up hoping for any satisfying romantic development in Nisekoi and now regard it as a pure comedy. This, in many ways in a shame as whilst watching this season I catch myself watching various scenes and find myself thinking that they would actually make pretty satisfying endings to a romantic comedy series -the whole arc covering Chitoge’s relationship with her mother leaps to mind-, but as Nisekoi is the adaptation of a long running Shonen Jump manga there is always a reason, no matter how contrived, for the status quo to be retained.
Owari no Seraph
Mitzuka: Hiroyuki Sawanao was not enough. It was too predictable, too dark, too much of the same trope that made Akame ga Kill and Attack on Titan dull. It simply tries to be dark and while it sets a good premise, the characters don’t seem to buy the idea that the world as we know it is gone if we don’t pull our sh*t together.
Chris: Owari no Seraph tries too hard. That’s it. The series tries way too hard to be dark, gritty, and serious. And at the same time, it tries too hard to be light-hearted and funny. It suffers for this, for the same reasons Akame ga Kill did. It’s jarring. I couldn’t really enjoy the series. You could see it was trying too hard, and it just ended up being…boring. It was a completely standard “dark” shounen series with a cocky main lead. I just couldn’t enjoy the series in any way, so I dropped it and haven’t touched it since.
Airdate: Sunday- 00:30 JST (GMT+9)
Subtitle Group: HorribleSubs
Consensus Rating: 5/10
Nick: A quick overview of why I didn’t like Plastic Memories: the whole plot was flawed, there was a lack of deep emotional connection with the characters, way too many massive plot holes, terrible filler eps, out of place humor, disjointed pacing due to the filler eps, overall disappointment as the plot fell apart. Not recommended at all.
Airdate: Friday- 00:50 JST (GMT+9)
Subtitle Group: HorribleSubs
Consensus Rating: Dropped
Nick: This pushed all the buttons for getting dropped after the first ep. Regardless of the flashy animation, comedy, and pantsu shots, there is a limit to how silly an anime I can stand and this one was past that limit. I know it’s not trying to be serious, but still if it’s too silly I can’t stand it.
Urawa no Usagi-chan
Nick: I like slice of life shows and all this but one was just plain boring. Even in the chillest slice of life shows they do something remotely interesting, but this one didn’t even do that. I gave it to 5 or 6 before pulling the plug on it.
Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Comedy wa Machigaitteru
Nick: While it started off strong, by the middle half things began to fall apart plot wise and by the end it was pretty bad. Terrible open ending too. This was a promising one and I really thought S2 would be a good, but things didn’t pan out that way and by the ending I was extremely disappointed. Very much not an Iroha fan either. Just, no.
Yamadakun to Nananin no Majo
Airdate: Sunday 23:30 JST (GMT+9)
Subtitle Group: HorribleSubs
Consensus Rating: 8/10
Mtizuka: This show is the dark horse of the season. The one anime everyone should like instead of that crap Nisekoi. One can argue that this type of romantic comedy is generic, save for that one twist where there’s fantasy involved. But what sets this apart from most series in the genre is that it doesn’t lead to the harem route at all! (Unless you want your own fanmade ending) It’s sweet, romantic, comical and very fluffy. Highly recommend giving this a go.
Chris: Yamada-kun to Nananin no Majo is a charming harem romcom that doesn’t fall victim to the tropes and sticking points of similar series. It knows its story and where it wants to go from there and clearly pushes the story along at a comfortable pace. While I felt it was paced well, it could’ve benefited from being a bit longer. It paced itself well considering, but it could’ve used more episodes to tie things together. I felt that it jumped between arcs too quickly and abruptly because it lacked time to show it. So, we’re usually left with a recap at the start of the next arc. Despite that, the show manages to keep a nice, interesting story and manages to balance the drama to keep you interested, whilst being light-hearted and fun. I went into this series with no expectations, and left with it ending up being one of my favorites of the season.
That wraps up the season of blooming. Hopefully you enjoyed this season as much as we did.
And on a last note: “Wishes don’t come true unless you wish out loud!”