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Tag Archives: Prisma Illya

Anime of the Year 2013 (15 to 11)

In case you’ve just started reading my Anime of the Year 2013 series, be sure to start with (25-21) and (20-16) before proceeding onward from here.

Koyomi Araragi is still the hero15. Monogatari Series

Each time we’ve revisited this amazing philosophical comedy, it has unfortunately decreased in quality—relatively speaking.  A franchise that was my anime of the year for 2009 and took my number six spot last year still tells really smart stories portrayed by a top-notch cast of voice actors.

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Summer 2013 Wrap-up

I imagine that the summer anime season is the least watched since nobody wants to be inside when the weather is nice outside and therefore tends not to get the highest quality titles.  Despite the logic of that deduction, I did end up watching quite a few anime this summer that impressed and surprised me.  If you want to read my predictions for how summer 2013 would turn out, you should go here.

Misaka falls from space1. Railgun S (Unchanged – 9/10)

Misaka Mikoto and friends deliver another great action series full of comedy and camaraderie.  The icing on the cake is seeing Misaka really grow as a character over these past two seasons.  If there’s a third season, I’d watch it in a heartbeat.

Koyomi and Shinobu reflect2. Monogatari Series (formerly 7 – ongoing)

Maybe the disappointment of Nisemonogatari lessened my view of this franchise because I can’t believe I ranked it at only #7 at the start of the summer 2013 season.  The philosophical comedy series is back on track and as hilarious and insightful as ever.

Illya and Miyu fire their finisher3. Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Illya (unchanged – 8/10)

I expected a series of cliché jokes that call out the ridiculousness of some of the stuff that goes on in the magic girl genre.  I didn’t expect there to also be a fair amount of badassery as well.

Gatchaman Crowds - The Team4. Gatchaman Crowds (formerly 14 – 8/10)

Sometimes the performance of a single character is enough to make an entire series worth watching and Hajime is such an unlikely, spunky hero in an otherwise serious anime that she makes the whole experience shine incredibly bright.

Lucy won't let Hasebe get the better of her5. Servant x Service (unchanged – 7/10)

If you enjoyed Working! (Wagnaria in America) then you’ll probably enjoy the unconventional humor in this series that forsakes established settings and blows a breath of fresh air into the anime world.

 

Kuroki sees something she can't unsee6. WataMote (formerly 2 – 7/10)

Often more miss than hit, I think this series was easy to relate to for anyone who had a tough time in high school.  Although it makes light of Tomoko’s depressed personality, there’s also a lot to learn from her as she deals with being ignored.

 

Alice and Shinobu walk to school7. Kiniro Mosaic (formerly 8 – 7/10)

I haven’t enjoyed a moe anime this much since Acchi Kocchi.  A ridiculously fun group of girls and an interesting premise about the cross of western and eastern cultures.

 

Genshiken heads to an onsen8. Genshiken Nidaime (formerly 6 – 7/10)

You’ll not find another anime that is a better representation of what otaku culture is really like.  We’re not deviants to be feared, we just have more eccentric tastes and hobbies compared to most other people, but we still have feelings.

Seira, Luna, Akari and Ginka begin their world tour9. Daybreak Illusion (formerly 18 – 5/10)

As magic girl shows go this one was good, but the rather run-of-the-mill story tried too hard to overreach what it was truly capable of.  Its only really distinguishing quality was its original art style that went the moe direction in an otherwise unmoe anime.

Titan Eren rages on fire10. Attack on Titan (formerly 9 – 5/10)

I fail to see why this series is so popular.  Yes, it has some really cool moments and it’s strong on action.  But this should not have been a 25 episode series.  As it dragged on, the animation degraded terribly and the story was horribly padded.

11. Rozen Maiden Zurückspulen (formerly 17 – 5/10)

I quite enjoyed this revisit of an older title that takes a look at an alternate timeline.  The characters were given proper treatment and while it wandered a bit, the story kept me wondering how it would turn out.

12. Sunday Without God (formerly 13 – 4/10)

I saw some potential in this series, but after the events of the third episode, it suddenly felt completely played out and I lost all interest.

13. Blood Lad (formerly 4 – 4/10)

This anime was a lot of fun and could have easily stolen my #9 slot from Daybreak Illusion if it had made any effort to have some sort of ending.  If it gets a second season, this rating may be worthy of revision.

14. The World God Only Knows: Goddesses (formerly 164/10)

This series has officially run out of ideas.  I would have thought it still had plenty of material to continue making jokes about dating sims, but I don’t like this new direction it has taken.

15. Fantasista Doll (formerly 134/10)

Since the premise is about trading card games, I thought I would have given this series more of a chance to see where it was going, but it just couldn’t hold my attention.  It was just missing a special little spark to keep me watching.

16. Hyperdimension Neptunia (formerly 113/10)

Based on its premise, I wasn’t expecting much from this series and my expectations were right on the money.  That’s not to say that some of its jokes about the console wars weren’t funny or clever, but a plot that should have been catering to an older audience felt like it was written for eight year olds.

17. Stella C3-bu (formerly 103/10)

I have to admit that the reimagining of critical moments in history that involved guns through the eyes of an airsoft club at a girls’ private school was an interesting enough premise that I gave it a good shot, but it just wasn’t delivering—especially in the acting department that left every character feeling flat.

18. Love Lab (formerly 123/10)

A story about a bunch of girls pooling their collective ignorance about romance and fighting over student council duties was probably doomed to go nowhere fast before I even gave it a chance.

Anime of the Week (7/21 – 7/27)

Anime of the Week – Servant x Service
Yamagami has to put up with Hasebe's flirting

While there is certainly a lot of humor that transcends cultural barriers, I really like the very Japanese-ness of this series. Having experienced Japan (as well as working in a city hall) myself I can appreciate a lot of the silly jokes—such as the section manager that nobody ever sees. For those of you who want to know more about what Japan is really like, pay attention to this anime; you might learn something.

July 21 Gatchaman Crowds Ep. 2 The simplicity of the story clearly shows it’s meant for a younger audience, but I still like it for some reason.
Attack on Titan Ep. 15 I thought we established the Recon Corps was full of weirdos seven episodes ago. More time wasted stating the obvious.
July 22 Blood Lad Ep. 3 Good themes of standing up for those who can’t protect themselves and bad guys going against their nature to do what’s right.
KinMoza Ep. 3 Being able to read the atmosphere of social situations is one of the hardest things for a foreigner to learn about Japan.
Monogatari 2 Ep. 3 Sometimes I feel like I could watch this franchise just to see how Tsukihi’s hairstyle changes as the story progresses.
Genshiken N Ep. 3 If only people could be honest with their hobbies, they wouldn’t have to make personas in order to hide their true selves.
Servant x Service Ep. 3 Back when I was younger and I worked boring jobs, like Hasebe I was also good at finding hiding places to slack off.
Neptunia Ep. 2 Yeah…turning the major game systems into anime girls is about as lame of a story premise as I imagined it would be.
Stella C3-bu Ep. 3 As antagonists go, Rin Haruna is the kind that I despise—dragging unrelated parties into her vendetta against Sonora.
July 23 Day Break Illusion Ep. 2 People were comparing this anime to Madoka and while I can see the similarities, my interest hasn’t increased.
KamiNai Ep. 2 While this anime has an interesting concept, it’s getting bogged down by explaining everything instead of telling a story.
Rozen Maiden Z Ep. 2 I’m glad I didn’t dismiss this as a boring reboot of the original. It’s proving to be an interesting alternate timeline.
Love Lab Ep. 2 There’s so much underhandedness going on that the story can’t move forward. I’m not even sure what it’s supposed to be about.
KamiNomi Tenri Ep. 1 I’m only watching this to get context for Megami. I’m not a fan of OVAs that are required to watch the main series.
Devil Survivor 2 Ep. 9 Taking forever to get started and rushing to the end—I knew 13 episodes couldn’t give this story the proper treatment.
Devil Survivor 2 Ep. 10 I’m glad at least Io got her good ending where everything else in this series seemed to go down the bad route.
Prisma Illya Ep. 3 This anime may be intentionally cliché but at least it’s emphasizing the good parts of magic girls and still having fun.
WataMote Ep. 3 At first I thought Tomoko was the victim of the people around her, but she actually brings a lot of her grief upon herself.
Rozen Maiden Z Ep. 3 If something truly miraculous happened before my eyes, I wonder if my rational, adult mind would be able to accept it.
July 24 Day Break Illusion Ep. 3 Ok yeah, I’ll admit there’s some interesting moral quandaries in this series. And I was ready to dismiss it on ep 1.
Devil Survivor 2 Ep. 11 I’ve found that MegaTen anime just can’t capture the suspense of a final boss fight the way the video games do.
July 25 KamiNomi Tenri Ep. 2 What a worthless OVA. It’s only tangentially related to the established plot, and it also has no real conclusion.
Devil Survivor 2 Ep. 12 Based on the way the rest of this series had been going, I fully expected this turn of events. Sadly predictable.
Devil Survivor 2 Ep. 13 For as bad as the rest of the series was, the ending was shaping up to be pretty cool until it turned thick.
July 26 Strike Witches Movie 1 It’s more of the over-the-top silly and straight-faced series I’ve come to love, but it’s a beginning without an end.
KamiNai Ep. 3 I’m not sure I like how fast this first story arc has finished. I would have liked to have gotten to know everyone better.
July 27 Stella C3-bu Ep. 4 Breaking gender stereotypes was enough, but now this anime has gone over the top by altering history through imagination.
Rozen Maiden Z Ep. 4 It’s interesting to see the differences and similarities between Shinku’s reactions towards young Jun and adult Jun.
Servant x Service Ep. 4 There are differences between coworker camaraderie, flirting and sexual harassment and I’m glad this anime knows that.
Railgun S Ep. 16 Why would Accelerator punch Kamijou when just a few minutes earlier in the fight ranged attacks were working just fine?

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Anime of the Week (7/14 – 7/20)

Anime of the Week – Toaru Kagaku no Railgun S
Accelerator makes a breakthrough

Though we may decry Accelerator for his unbridled lust for power, I always get goosebumps when he makes a new discovery about the extent of his abilities. Knowledge often comes in plateaus of monotany broken by great leaps of inspiration and I can appreciate his exhiliration.                              

July 14 Attack on Titan Ep. 14 If I had a dime for every anime whose second season opening theme was worse than the first season I could retire.
July 15 Blood Lad Ep. 2 We may jump to conclusions just because someone’s methods are dishonest, but it doesn’t mean their kindness is disingenuous.
Prisma Illya Ep. 2 From the Fate references to the deconstruction of the magic girl genre, this anime’s meta-levels of parody are awesome.
Genshiken Nidaime Ep. 2 Our biases are influenced by our past, but the thrill of exploring new discoveries can help us change for the better.
Monogatari 2 Ep. 2 Total indiscrimination is pointless. It’s just as important to have things you hate as it is to have things you love.
July 16 Silver Spoon Ep. 1 I’m sure this will be a good story about hard work and not running from your problems, but I don’t care for the setting.
Kami Nomi Megami Ep. 1 I liked this franchise better when it was more episodic. Now it has lost me with its attempts to expand the story.
WataMote Ep. 1 What’s going on? It’s like someone took my adolescent personality and superimposed it onto a Japanese high school girl.
WataMote Ep. 2 I can’t recall an anime that has made me feel so happy about being depressed. It perfectly suits my dry sense of humor.
July 17 KinMosa Ep. 1 Having lived in Japan for three years, I really appreciate these stories about culture shock and misconceptions about Japan.
July 18 KinMosa Ep. 2 It’s losing sophistication, but it’s gaining moe points. There’s actually a plot so this should be better than Yuyushiki.
July 19 Uchoten Ep. 1 Neither good nor bad. It’s got some clever humor, but I’d very much like to have a better idea of where the story is going.
July 20 Day Break Illusion Ep. 1 I’m a fan of using tarot as inspiration for a story, but the plot seems too generic magic girl to be interesting.
Dangan Ronpa Ep. 1 Survival game anime are too played out by this point to hold my interest anymore. Especially incomprehensible ones.
Gatchaman Crowds Ep. 1 Hero anime aren’t typically my thing, but this one’s got a really fun cast and a style that’s holding my attention.
Railgun S Ep. 15 Accelerator is one of my favorite villains because I can relate to his motives and understand the madness of his methods.

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Summer 2013 Recommendations

With two sequels of garbage anime airing this summer in High School DxD New and Tamayura: More Aggressive as well as sequels of franchises I thought had been lost to the abyss of time like Genshiken, The World God Only Knows and Rozen Maiden, I didn’t have high hopes for this season.  I’m pleasantly surprised to be wrong because there are some really fun and quirky titles that have made my watch list for summer 2013.

Misaka feels cornered1. A Certain Scientific Railgun S

Based on this summer’s first impressions, there’s little doubt in my mind that Railgun is going to be far and above everything else.

 

 

Kuroki feels left behind by the world2. Watashi ga Motenai

In an oxymoronic way, I think the embodiment of this anime is, “if you can’t be happy, you should find ways to enjoy being miserable.”  I absolutely love that kind of twisted logic and all the fresh ideas that come with it.

 

Illya's reaction to becoming a magic girl3. Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya

This comedic parody of Fate is doing a great job first and foremost because it knows it’s a magic girl anime and isn’t afraid to have fun with what was formerly some deadly serious intellectual property.

 

Staz and Fuyumi begin their trek to the human world4. Blood Lad

I didn’t expect that I would be able to put up with the really simple, somewhat gaudy art style used in this series.  But the goofy premise is so ridiculous it just might work and the fast pace of the story that doesn’t miss a beat has sucked me in.

 

Miyoshi, Yamagami and Hasebe work at the city hall5. Servant x Service

Ever since I came to Japan, every so often I encounter an anime that I could never have related to if I had not lived in this country with its unique perspectives.

 

 

Genshiken casts present and past gather6. Genshiken Nidaime

It’s been so long since Genshiken’s last season I didn’t think another go at this franchise would be able to succeed. Boy was I wrong.  Genshiken hasn’t missed a beat and I love it.

 

Hanekawa and Senjougahara talk7. Monogatari Series: Second Season

The next iteration of Nishio Ishin’s fabulous intellectual adventure has gotten off to a slow start, but there’s little doubt this will offer the same stimulation as its predecessors.

 

Alice has a Japanese breakfast and Shinobu has a western breakfast8. Kiniro Mosaic

Another anime this season that hits really close to home and makes me wish I had had the drive to come to Japan earlier in my life.

 

 

Levi disciplines Eren9. Attack on Titan

Oh how the expectations have fallen.  Still epic visually, but it has also become somewhat lost with its inability to consistently keep up a high standard of excellence story-wise.

 

Yura is apprehensive, but excited10. Stella C3-bu

I really like these shows that challenge us to rethink our stereotypes about gender roles.  After all, is there really any reason why a girls’ school couldn’t have an airsoft club?

 

Honorable Mentions

Hyperdimension Neptunia – Love Lab – Sunday Without God – Gatchaman Crowds – Fantasista Doll

The World God Only Knows: Goddesses – Rozen Maiden Zurückspulen

Anime of the Week (7/7 – 7/13)

Anime of the Week – Toaru Kagaku no Railgun S
Touma confronts Misaka

We shoulder the bruden of the mistakes we’ve made in the past—as well as the burden of mistakes others have made. But there is no reason to take on those burdens all by yourself if it means breaking down to the point if self-destruction. Seek help from those you trust and who trust in you so that we may make each other better.                              

July 7 Monogatari 2 Ep. 1 With Araragi absent, there’s a lack of insightful dialogue that comes from the clash of male and female perspectives.
Attack on Titan Ep. 13.5 Bleh. This clip show really shows just how much time this series wastes with unnecessary, boring storytelling.
July 8 Prisma Illya Ep. 1 I might like this spin-off better than its parent series—it’s not so full of itself and Illya is my favorite character.
Genshiken N Ep. 1 It never ceases to amaze me just how many parallels there are between Genshiken and my own college anime club experience.
Kami-nai Ep. 1 While the setting is very intriguing, I must say I can’t find any logic in the actions of the main characters thus far.
July 9 Blood Lad Ep. 1 This is one of those anime with an off the wall premise of questionable quality, but it’s somehow caught me in it’s pace.
July 10 Free! Ep. 1 Be mindful of the adage, “Nothing good is ever free.” Not that this show is bad, per se. But I’ll leave it for the fujoshi.
Fantasista Doll Ep. 1 With all the Japanese TCGs I play, there’s just too many card game references in this series for me to pass it up.
July 12 Leviathan Ep. 13 And so the journey goes on. If this series gets a second season I’d watch it. But I highly doubt it will ever come.
July 13 Railgun S Ep. 14 Just because when you pray and god doesn’t answer, it doesn’t mean if you ask people for help nobody will come to your aid.
Servant x Service Ep. 2 I’ve figured out why I like this series so much. It was created by the same guy who came up with the idea for Working.
Stella C3-bu Ep. 1 This looks like the start of a really touching story about coming out of your shell with a Girls und Panzer twist.
Neptunia Ep. 1 I’m still in shock that this concept was made into a game; much more so that the game was popular enough to warrant an anime.
Stella C3-bu Ep. 2 I’m interested to see how Yura’s relationship with the other girls develops since she sort of joined this club by default.

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