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Spring Anime Season 2018 – Review July 4, 2018

Posted by coolmikeol in Anime, Otaku.
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This season was mostly full of random stuff I found interesting. There was a few weeks during the season however that I wasn’t watching any animes. Mostly because I was busy with other things, but also because myanimelist.net was down, which I’m very dependent on to keep track of what animes I watch. I didn’t want to watch episodes without marking them down on my list. They have been slowing recovering from a still unknown reason, but at least the website is functional enough for me to use it again. If you want to see a full list of what animes I’ve watched, you can always check out My Anime List. Here is a list of animes that I watched from this season:

Comic Girls

Darling in the FranXX

Emiya-san Chi no Kyou no Gohan

Fumikiri Jikan

Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu: Die Neue These – Kaikou

Shokugeki no Souma: San no Sara – Toutsuki Ressha-hen

Sword Art Online Alternative: Gun Gale Online

Uma Musume: Pretty Derby (TV)

Wotaku ni Koi wa Muzukashii

Remember, these reviews assume that you have watched the series, which means SPOILERS will be few but imminent. You have been warned.


Comic Girls

Comic Girls is about the daily life of up-and-coming female mangaka living together in a dormitory. That’s the basic synopsis, but there’s a little more to it than that. Kaoruko “Kaos” Moeta is a new mangaka who is struggling to debut. She is invited to stay at a dorm where other young female mangakas stay, as a way to help her. Kaos is very unsure of herself and her abilities, especially when surrounded by people who to her are pros in their own right. Her dorm mates who eventually becomes her friends help support her by eventually becoming the inspiration for her manga storyboard.

This show is a cute little story of someone trying to get their foot in the door of a competitive industry. She has the drawing skills, but not enough experience of how to put that into a manga that people would like. I can sort of relate; I have skills to do post video production, but I don’t know where to start (besides YouTube) to apply it towards a career. It’s a decent slice-of-life anime, but nothing too special in this day and age to be honest.

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Darling in the FranXX

Review of this anime continued from the last season post.

Because I had just finished watching Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu, during the battle near Mars it reminded me of that show only because of the Klaxosaurs vs. VIRM fighting. You know lasers firing at each other in space. Just wanted to note that as the thought went through my mind while watching that scene.

Darling in the FranXX feels storywise to Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann in a way. Just like how in Gurren Lagann, humanity thought that the enemy was the Beastmen when it really was the Anti-Spirals, in Darling in the FranXX the Klaxosaurs were the initial enemies, but it turns out that VIRM is the true villain. What cements this similarity is the fact that the Beastmen and Klaxosaurs both faced their respective foes and lost, and because of it went after humanity for one reason or another.

The ending of this series felt sort of rushed. It concluded everything on a positive note, even though I think that VIRM is still alive. I don’t understand what’s stopping them from attacking Earth again, besides maybe that their planet was destroyed. After the heroic sacrifice of Hiro and Zero Two, Earth is once again able to recover and learn from their mistakes, going back to the days of classic human reproduction. It gives closure to the two by having them meet in the next life, as hinted in the last scene.

Overall, Darling in the FrankXX was an interesting show between Trigger and A-1 Pictures. It wasn’t as great as it could have been, but I enjoyed the world building and past story leading up to the present.

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Emiya-san Chi no Kyou no Gohan

This short series anime is still ongoing through this season, and only a couple more episodes came out for it but it’s still pretty good. Shirou is still making delicious looking food, all while being surrounded by his friends and acquaintances. I will say that episode 7 showed that as simple as this show is, it still is a Fate series anime, and with it comes some good action with great animation to go with it. PS: I looked into who animates this and was surprised to find out that it’s ufotable, known for their work on Fate/Zero and Fate/Stay Night UBW, among other shows.

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Fumikiri Jikan

Short stories that take place while waiting at a train crossing. Each episode usually focuses on a couple of characters and how they interact with one another. There wasn’t anything too interesting with this series as a whole, it’s just a short episode format anime to watch to kill time between my other shows I was watching.

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Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu: Die Neue These – Kaikou

I initially picked this up because Sawano Hiroyuki did the OP for the anime, but stayed for the tactical space battles. What I initially didn’t know was that this is a remake of sorts, as this series came out as OVAs back in the late 80s to 90s. As for the show, there was a lot of plot and dialogue that I didn’t pay attention much to, such as the background history and politics, but I do understand and appreciate it for its world building purpose. The main event, the space battles, were slow but intense in a different way: Tactics. It was like seeing a chess battle but with the pieces being thousands of ships flying around with weapons. The action would mostly be just ships on either side endlessly firing lasers at each other not doing much, but it’s the decisions by the higher ups that would turn the tides of battle. Whether small or big, these actions can win or lose the battle in an instant. I enjoyed seeing this aspect of the war between the Alliance and Empire, because it shows that half the battle is fought before a shot is fired. If you can manage to plan and predict things out in advance, you may win before you even start.

———–

Shokugeki no Souma: San no Sara – Toutsuki Ressha-hen

Shokugeki no Souma never ceases to amaze me with its cooking action, even if I don’t directly understand all the terminology thrown around. Things are getting more heated up now that everything is pretty much on the line. If either side loses, then it will be a permanent game over for them. In this second part of the third season, our rebel heroes have the winning edge over Central, and that’s how this season ends. It’s almost a given that we’ll see a forth season in the future. I can’t believe that this anime series started three years ago, and it’s still entertaining none the less. It doesn’t get me to start learning cooking, as this stuff is on another advanced level, but some people out in the world probably does cook like these elites. I’m looking forward to more in the future.

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Sword Art Online Alternative: Gun Gale Online

It’s another Sword Art Online anime, and it doesn’t have our usual hero Kirito? Meet Karen Kohiruimaki, a college student who has a complex about her tall figure and has a poor social disposition because of it. To have some relief from it, she decides to enter the VRMMO universe in an attempt to find a virtual avatar that suits her, finding it when entering the world of Gun Gale Online. She becomes LLENN, a short cute chibi avatar who she dresses in an all pink uniform. Armed primarily with a P90, she finds herself on the battle royale battlefield known as Squad Jam.

This show is what I call a battle royale anime. It’s not that great of a show, but it does have some moments that I did find cool. For example, most of the time you see a little pink girl, you would not think of her as a threat, or rather as someone who would be afraid and dependent on others. That’s not the case with LLENN, who when she gets serious, can get a job done in a way only she could manage. Sure she has had times where she was worried about the people around her and about what to do in general, but once she has her mind set, she’s the Pink Devil.

As for the story it’s quite bare, and the ending tones down the importance of LLENN’s mission to “save” someone. Talking about the ending, it really came as not much of a surprise that Pitohui is really Elza Kanzaki as it was hinted a few times in the season. I did like how they tried to throw us off by Goushi saying that Pitohui is the owner of the venue that Elza was performing at, even having her have the same voice as Pitohui. However Karen saw right through that illusion to correctly identify Elza as Pitohui, realizing that only she would have known that Karen was LLENN through a fan mail that was sent to her by Karen.

Overall, it was entertaining and fresh in the world of SAO animes. We’re about to get the third season of Sword Art Online with Alicization, so we got that to look forward to now.

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Uma Musume: Pretty Derby (TV)

This series was pretty solid, despite its premise: Anthropomorphized horse girls. In essence this show is all about the horse races and the hard training that comes with trying to be number one. I found myself liking this anime because you could understand the hardships the characters had that come from working hard towards a goal that almost looks like a dream.

I know that this series is based of the game, but I could see this kind of show working even without the horse girl part; It would end up more like a track running show. Even so it was interesting to have the horse girls based on their real life counterparts. That’s right, if you didn’t know each horse girl in this show is based off of a real horse. For example in real life, Silence Suzuka suffered an injury that led to her early “retirement”, and Special Week was winning races during its very early racing years. It was sad to find out that Special Week had passed away shortly after this show started. His legacy will live on through Japanese anime.

I’m glad that this show turned out to be more sports based than fan service based. I remember watching the PV a couple of years ago, which had way more fan service via yuri. In the TV adaption, it was kept to an absolute minimum, to the point where it’s hard for me to recall any specific scenes, which usually stick to most viewers minds. I’m also glad that the idol aspect was more present as a bonus, rather than a main feature. Overall this anime was better than my expectations, and I would actually recommend this if you are into unique individuals going at it at horse racing speeds.

———–

Wotaku ni Koi wa Muzukashii

Unfortunately I dropped this anime, not because it’s bad but because it’s too slow for me. I realized this when I kept falling asleep every time I tried watching this show. It’s basically about office working adults who are all otaku in their own ways. The main characters are dating each other, and so you would think that an otaku dating another otaku would be easy, but love never is.

———–

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Winter Anime Season 2018 – Review March 31, 2018

Posted by coolmikeol in Seasonal Anime Reviews.
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This season of anime has been a very comfortable, adorable, and laid-back one for the most part. If you want to see a full list of what animes I’ve watched, you can always check out My Anime List. Here is a list of animes that I watched from this season:

Citrus

Dagashi Kashi 2

Darling in the FranXX

Emiya-san Chi no Kyou no Gohan

Karakai Jouzu no Takagi-san

Miira no Kaikata

Sora yori mo Tooi Basho

Yuru Camp△

Remember, these reviews assume that you have watched the series, which means SPOILERS will be few but imminent. You have been warned.


 

Citrus


It’s yet another yuri anime, this time between “sisters”. Yuzu Aihara gains a step sister after her mother remarries. This girl is Mei Aihara, busybody Student Council President whose cold exterior makes her hard to approach. After certain events happen between the two at school, and learn that they are now sisters at home from their mom, “Mei forces her to the ground and kisses her, with Yuzu desperately trying to break free. Once done, Mei storms out of the room, leaving Yuzu to ponder the true nature of her first kiss, and the secrets behind the tortured expression in the eyes of her new sister.” – Via MAL.net

I feel that yuri animes of this nature seem to follow the same kind of drama approach: girl meets girl, one takes a step forward while one steps back, the one who stepped back tries to figure out her feelings, eventually trying to hook up with the girl who initiated the sexual approach. End. OK so I haven’t really seen that many yuri anime of this kind, the only other one I can think of is Netsuzou TRap, but I feel that this is likely how most shows like this go. It’s not a bad formula, but it’s basic in the extreme. What I mean by that is within this storytelling approach, in order to break the monotony of romance formulas, they raise the drama levels by making the conflict go back and forth like the rocking of a ship in a storm.

This anime was fine to watch, but the “romance” felt too forced on either side. It felt like they were just using it as an excuse to vent their stress on one another, sometimes to the point that when one person was trying to deny the approach, you could call it attempted rape. It never really got too extreme with this thought, but if this was a live action show (which I could imagine becoming a thing), then maybe it might be too graphic to watch for certain audiences.

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Dagashi Kashi 2

In this now anime short format second season of Dagashi Kashi, Kokonotsu Shikada continues to deal with the people and problems surrounding him. The first half of the season is more or less like it has been, with Hotaru hanging out with the gang marketing new kinds of dagashi to them. However, after the disappearance of Hotaru and the hiring of Hajime, the anime wasn’t really the same anymore. It was more focused on developing Kokonotsu’s character to some extent, to push him to figure out what he wanted to do in the future: Become a mangaka or takeover the Shikada dagashi store. While the opportunity to become a manga author came and went, Hotaru’s return brought back some of his confidence upon her return. Kokonotsu seems to aiming to move forward with help from his friends, with whatever pursuits he may have for the future.

Dagashi Kashi 2 was alright. It wasn’t structured advertising a dagashi per episode as it seemed to be in the first season, but rather more story based to develop Kokonotsu. I know people were noticing Hotaru’s extended absence, but even when she came back in the end it felt low key as she was not as crazy eyed as we have come to know her. Nothing really concluded in this second season, but somewhat entertaining at least.

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Darling in the FranXX

This anime will be ongoing to the next season as it is a 24 episode series. I’m on episode 11 and so far things are progressing well in terms of setting and character development, by using each episode to focus on a single person. I remember when I first started watching the first few episodes, I wondered how they were going to flesh out the story in a 12 episode series, though I was relieved to find out later that it was going to be 24 episodes.

DARLING in the FRANXX I feel is a combination of Trigger’s previous anime series Kiznaiver, a little bit of Kill La Kill, with A-1 Pictures art style and story pacing. The beginning felt rushed but at this point we’re getting into the heart of things. There’s still a lot of mystery to be revealed, and powers to be shown, so I’m looking forward to that.

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Emiya-san Chi no Kyou no Gohan

In the everyday peaceful life of Emiya Shirou, he cooks delicious dishes for the ones he calls his friends and family, bringing them all together for dinner. That’s pretty much what this show is about, another spin-off of the Fate series. While familiar with the Fate series, I haven’t actually watched any of the dozens of variations that this series has. This show however is just a simple show about how meals can bring different people together for the sake of warm company.

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Karakai Jouzu no Takagi-san

Synopisi via MAL.net:

“”If you blush, you lose.”

Living by this principle, the middle schooler Nishikata gets constantly made fun of by his seat neighbor Takagi-san. With his pride shattered to pieces, he vows to turn the tables and get back at her some day. And so, he attempts to tease her day after day, only to find himself victim to Takagi-san’s ridicule again sooner than later. Will he be able to make Takagi-san blush from embarrassment even once in the end?”

This anime plays on the innocence of middle school youth between an easily embarrassed boy Nishikata and playfully teasing Takagi-san. Most of the time it’s the little things that Takagi-san does to Nishikata that gets him easily flustered. Sometimes you could argue that Takagi-sans constant teasing can be a form of light bullying. All in all though, neither one goes too far with teasing and is seen as light-hearted playing between a boy and a girl. And through their interactions, grow to learn and like each other.

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Miira no Kaikata

When I first saw some clips of this anime, I thought it was one of those anime short series where each episode was only several minutes long. Turns out it was a full fledged 24 minute 12 episode season. At first, based on a few clips I saw online I wondered how an anime of this nature would fill the time and keep me from sleeping while watching….

“When high school student Sora Kashiwagi finds himself staring down a mysterious oversized package sent to him by his self-proclaimed “adventurer” father, the last thing he expects is for it to be opened from the inside… by a little mummy so small it can fit in the palm of his hand!” – Synopsis Via MAL.net

Adorableness is the heart of this anime, and it’s something that pulled me in from the get go. Mii-kun the little mummy is like a little pet who loves attention, but at the same time is quite intelligent and listens to Sora. There are the other mythical beings that show up as well; Conny the stubborn oni child, Isao the mini dragon, and Mukumuku the super sprinting dream-eating baku. All of them are like animated stuffed animals that are just so cute, especially how they show they care for their owners.

While Mii-kun and friends are in the spotlight, I also noticed and enjoyed seeing the friendship growing between all of the main human characters. Sora is the extremely friendly type who always tries to help everyone else before himself. Besides his glaring-eyed childhood friend Tazuki who encounters Conny , he also befriends Motegi-chan and Daichi and helps them befriend their respective supernatural creatures Isao and Mukumuku.

This anime is great for people who would love a perfect pet or animal partner to look after. Who wouldn’t like a palm-sized plushie type of creature who loves your company and responds by helping you out when it can? I know I would, and for that is why I recommend this show for Slice-of-Life anime fans.

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Sora yori mo Tooi Basho

This anime is all about the roller coaster of youth and figuring out how you want to fulfill it. Here’s a synopsis from MAL.net:

“Filled with an overwhelming sense of wonder for the world around her, Mari Tamaki has always dreamt of what lies beyond the reaches of the universe. However, despite harboring such large aspirations on the inside, her fear of the unknown and anxiety over her own possible limitations have always held her back from chasing them. But now, in her second year of high school, Mari is more determined than ever to not let any more of her youth go to waste. Still, her fear continues to prevent her from taking that ambitious step forward—that is, until she has a chance encounter with a girl who has grand dreams of her own.

Spurred by her mother’s disappearance, Shirase Kobuchizawa has been working hard to fund her trip to Antarctica. Despite facing doubt and ridicule from virtually everyone, Shirase is determined to embark on this expedition to search for her mother in a place further than the universe itself. Inspired by Shirase’s resolve, Mari jumps at the chance to join her. Soon, their efforts attract the attention of the bubbly Hinata Miyake, who is eager to stand out, and Yuzuki Shiraishi, a polite girl from a high class background. Together, they set sail toward the frozen south.

Sora yori mo Tooi Basho follows the captivating journey of four spirited girls, all in search of something great.”

Originally I wasn’t planning to watch it, but midway through the season I heard good things about it so I decided to give it a try. This show has a fantastic story about growing your own dreams into reality, though hard work, willpower, and the help of teamwork. I enjoyed watching them all make it to Antarctica, a place that they could only image back in Japan. It’s like that feeling of how you plan for a trip a year in advance, and once you finally go and get to your destination, you feel like you’ve accomplished a big goal leading up to getting there.

My only issue with the show was the ending; it felt a bit rushed. It was like they just arrived at the Inland Base, and all of a sudden it switches to a frantic search for any sign of Shirase’s mother. I felt there should have been a scene in-between those two where Shirase realizes that she is where her mother was last before going off on the search. Besides that, the moment where she sees all the unsent E-mails was very emotional, and I almost shed a tear at that point. Their farewell to Antarctica was well deserved after all the hard work they did as part of the team, and I’m glad that they all had a fulfilling time there. I feel that all four of them will be able to move on in their lives, proud of a trip that most cannot say they have done before, exploring a place farther than anyone can really go on our planet, besides space of course.

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Yuru Camp△

Clearly the winner for the most comfiest anime I’ve seen, Yuru Camp is an anime about winter camping in Japan. In this Slice-of-life show where cute girls do cute things, I found myself loving the laid back style of the anime, alongside the humor and scenic vistas that the animation art had to offer.

Yuru Camp doesn’t have much of a story, as with most Slice-of-Life animes. In this case, each episode or two had camping scenes where it either focused on the solo Rin or the Outdoors Club members planning and camping. It showed the best of both worlds; Rin the solo camper tended to like going out on her own to enjoy her own pace, something I can understand. There are some benefits to traveling on your own, primarily not having to worry about planning around others especially if the trip is something that you are the planner of. However the best camping scenes usually happened when Rin and Nadeshiko and company camped together. Because Nadeshiko is new to camping, her reactions to discovering the joys of it are purely blissful. As an experienced camper, Rin seems to enjoy seeing their first impressions of things that she is used to.

You can probably say that this anime is a good marketer of camping supplies as well. Most of the items mentioned in the show are real, like the different kinds of sleeping bags and tents, and cooking supplies. It was interesting to have explanations for how to use them and for what specific purposes they were best for. And to keep it more or less down to reality, real prices were shown as a key point for what the high school group could actually afford. I’ve gone camping once myself with friends, and it was definitely a learning experience: Bringing the essentials, managing space in a car, knowing the area around the campsite, anticipating changing weather conditions, etc.

I thoroughly enjoyed this anime though seeing Nadeshiko’s initial reactions and experiences, and learning about things about camping I did not know. As I mentioned before I have not really gone camping besides the one trip I had last year, and I’m also not much of an outdoors person. Doesn’t mean I don’t want to try new things, as I’m a naturally curious person just like Nadeshiko is, which is why I can relate to her. When I finished this anime I actually started looking up campsites in my area, just to consider options if I were to try going camping on my own as an overnight trip.

Fall Anime Season 2017 – Review January 17, 2018

Posted by coolmikeol in Seasonal Anime Reviews.
Tags: , ,
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This final season of the year wasn’t particularly interesting, but it had some good ones none the less. If you want to see a full list of what animes I’ve watched, you can always check out My Anime List. Here is a list of animes that I watched from this season:

Blend S

Boku no Kanojo ga Majimesugiru Sho-bitch na Ken

Himouto! Umaru-chan R

Love Live! Sunshine!! 2nd Season

Net-juu no Susume

Osake wa Fuufu ni Natte kara

Shokugeki no Souma: San no Sara

UQ Holder!: Mahou Sensei Negima! 2

Remember, these reviews assume that you have watched the series, which means SPOILERS will be few but imminent. You have been warned.


Blend S

One of my surprising favorites of this season is Blend S. Our main heroine Maika Sakuranomiya has a bad habit of glaring at people, making her look mad and sadistic especially when she doesn’t mean to. After having trouble finding a part time job, she is scouted one day by an Italian man who is also the manager of Stile, a café where its waitresses are given unique traits. Maika is given a sadist trait because of her looks and has to adopt a dominant and cruel persona when servicing customers, particularly masochist ones.

This show to me is like a combination of the animes Working! and a bit of Kiniro Mosaic; Mostly for its customer service workplace environment and somewhat from Maika’s interest in foreigners and studying abroad. I love the humor and moments of fanservice, but I also enjoyed the shipping developments between some of the characters, especially Akizuki and Kaho. I can sort of relate to Maika as I have a natural angry look on my face, especially when I don’t mean to or am not paying attention to my surroundings. The season ended on a good note, but it did not feel like a true end. Maybe we’ll see more of this show in future, at least I hope so.

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Boku no Kanojo ga Majimesugiru Sho-bitch na Ken

If you could already tell from the looks of it, yes it’s another one of those ecchi harem type animes. No it’s not great as it ends up becoming a constant double act of our protagonist being the straight man to the girls who throw out perverted lines all the time. If you want a better version of an anime like this, try Seitokai Yakuindomo.

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Himouto! Umaru-chan R

The adventures of Umaru continues in this second season, where not much has changed. She still enjoys lazing around playing video games and eating junk food. However I felt that she shows more heart this time around, caring more for the ones around her even in her chibi mode. We also got more screen time for the other characters of the show, as well as being introduced to a couple new ones as well. Umaru redeemed herself in my eyes that she is truly a person who can balance family, friends, and her own personal desires.

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Love Live! Sunshine!! 2nd Season

Continuing off from the Love Live loss from the previous season, Aqours prepares for the next Love Live. They still had the looming problem of their school closing without enough applicants, so this was their last chance to attract new prospective students by trying to win Love Live! Despite their best efforts however, they could not reach the goal set by Mari’s father and thus closure was imminent. Winning Love Love for their school has always been their goal, but now that focus was shifted to use Love Live to immortalize their school’s name in history. With enough determination and teamwork, their efforts paid off and were victorious. They gave their old school a memorable send off and in the end, Aqours went their separate ways.

I thought that this second season worked much better than the first, primarily because Aqours distanced themselves from their inspiration, μ’s. Not once did I ever remember μ’s mentioned in this season, and I think it’s a good thing because it’s to show that Aqours is their own thing, not just a copy or shadow of something else. There was also a decent amount of character development, allowing almost each character an episode to tackle a personal issue with the group usually helping out. This season wrapped up Aqours story in the most ideal way, and while a bit too clean for my taste, closed up most of the plot holes that I can think of.

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Net-juu no Susume

This was one of the best animes of the season, at least in my opinion and age group. Here’s a synopsis from MAL.net:

“For the first time since graduating high school, 30-year-old Moriko Morioka is unemployed—and she couldn’t be happier. Having quit her long-standing job of over 11 years, Moriko quickly turns to online games to pass her now-plentiful free time, reinventing herself as the handsome and dashing male hero “Hayashi” in the MMO Fruits de Mer. With the pesky societal obligations of the real world out of the way, she blissfully dives headfirst into the realm of the game, where she promptly meets the kind and adorable healer Lily. Befriending each other almost instantly, the two become inseparable just as Moriko herself becomes more and more engrossed in her new “life” as Hayashi. Eventually, Moriko adopts the reclusive lifestyle in its entirety, venturing out from the safety of her apartment only when absolutely necessary.

Meanwhile, unbeknownst to Moriko, a timid 28-year-old corporate worker named Yuuta Sakurai has also logged onto Fruits de Mer from the other side of town. Coincidentally bumping into each other at the convenience store one night, both write off their meeting as no more than just another awkward encounter with a stranger—however, fate has more in store for them than they think.”

Because I’m a 27 year old part time worker and avid anime/video game fan, I connected with this show quite easily. I know the feeling of working constantly, and having it wear you down. I also know the great feeling of unwinding by playing online games with friends. I may not play MMOs much specifically, but I get the gist of how Moriko feels in general with video games. As with any anime that doesn’t focus on a student, it’s a breath of fresh air. What’s also charming about this show is the development of our main characters Moriko and Yuuta, two individuals who meet by chance but grow closer to one another through a shared interest. The show had a healthy conclusion that we can assume leads to a bright future to the both of them.

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Osake wa Fuufu ni Natte kara

This was an adorable anime short series to watch, that shows the absolute trust and love a married couple can show for each other. Here’s a self-explaining synopsis from MAL.net:

Chisato Mizusawa is a reserved but excellent and pretty assistant manager in her company. She has a secret that only her husband Sora knows, which is that she likes drinking alcohol, and she can become very cute when she is drunk! Even tonight, she gets relaxed (with the phrase “Shifuku~”) and drunk with the cocktail Sora makes♥. It’s a “Yoidere (Drunken Dere)” cocktail comedy of Japan’s closest husband and wife.

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Shokugeki no Souma: San no Sara

In this third season of Shokugeki no Soma, Yukihira faces new challenges in the form of taking on the elite 10 directly. Through trials and tribulations he grows his cooking skills to new levels, but not before a new enemy appears to change and destroy all that Soma believes in….

I enjoyed this season as it wasn’t just all about Shokugekis and all, but rather about the whole school and about how divided the ideals of cooking are between all the students. Because of that rift, and the fact that the majority of its source comes from the top tier students, Soma is forced to face his toughest battles yet, pushing him towards the top as well. Will this be enough to change things for the better? We’ll find out hopefully when the next season begins.

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UQ Holder!: Mahou Sensei Negima! 2

UQ Holder! is a sequel manga to the Mahou Sensei Negima! series both by Ken Akamatsu. Knowing this is important because I feel that you really need to be familiar with Negima! in order to understand all the references and general story. In this anime adaptation, it has been decades since the events from Negima! This story follows Tota Konoe, a young boy who grew up in the countryside. Two years prior, he was saved by Yukihime (Evangeline A.K. McDowell) after his parents was killed by an unknown person. Due to this he loses his memories before the incident, and Yukihime takes him under her care. Back in the present, Tota enjoys his everyday life with his friends until one day he is attacked and is left on the verge of death. Yukihime saves him once more, though this time by offering to live as an immortal vampire such as herself. He learns then that he is the grandson of Negi Springfield, and that the answers he seeks about his life lies with him at the space elevator tower in the city.

As a fan of the Negima! series, I’ve finished the manga and was quite interested in UQ Holder! when I discovered it on Crunchyroll’s manga page. With how rushed and incomplete the ending of Negima! was, I was hoping that this sequel would iron out the details about the Lifemaker and the fate of Negi and class 3-A. As of writing this, I’ve read up to chapter 127, but that was over a year ago since I last read a new chapter. When it was revealed that Tota was a clone of Negi in the anime, I wasn’t sure whether or not that was in the manga or just added for the anime. I’m also pretty sure though that the encounter and battle between Tota and Negi in the anime probably didn’t happen in the manga, as I knew that they needed to have some sort of climax and ending to the anime season…. At least not yet anyways. I felt that UQ Holder!’s manga didn’t have enough chapters for them to have a proper story to animate, so my expectations were not high for the anime. Though I guess having anything Negima! related animated is something good regardless, especially looking at the track record that the series has when made into an anime.

While the first couple of episodes adapted the manga well, I felt the rest of the season was too fragmented and rushed due to lack of content from the manga, and tied in an original ending to conclude the anime. I could be completely wrong as I haven’t kept up with the manga, but seeing how Akamatsu’s series-turned-anime tends to end up, I would not be surprised if this was the case. I do have hopes that UQ Holder! will eventually flesh out the Negima! universe, as well as becoming its own thing from the child professor, but only time will tell.

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