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Summer Anime Season 2018 – Review October 5, 2018

Posted by coolmikeol in Seasonal Anime Reviews.
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This has been a relatively light season for me, as these were the only ones that interested me. It also works out because I haven’t had as much leisure time recently because I’ve been maxing out hours at work. 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:

Hanebado!

Harukana Receive

Hataraku Saibou

Isekai Maou to Shoukan Shoujo no Dorei Majutsu

Shingeki no Kyojin Season 3

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


Hanebado!

Hanebado looks like your standard sports anime about Badminton… and it mostly is. In this case though, it took the drama approach and made the main character into a sort of tragic hero. Ayano Hanesaki used to happily play badminton throughout her childhood with her mother Uchika, until she seemingly abandoned her after Ayano lost a match. This caused Ayano to abandon badminton in order to escape the memories. With the start of high school, Ayano’s friend Erena pushes her to join a club. While trying out tennis, a rogue ball heads straight for Erena which Ayano deflects with ease. A scouting coach for the badminton club sees this and tries to recruit Ayano. She reluctantly does so with support from Erena. Here she meets Nagisa, one she beat back in their middle school days, who is hell bent on beating Ayano in badminton. Playing badminton brought back her skills she learned all those years ago, as well as her deep psychological pain and rage that welled up when her mother left her. When Ayano is in trance zone, she becomes cold and blunt towards everyone, and is a no mercy force to be reckoned with.

This show was alright, but the two extreme sides of Ayano felt unnatural, but still understandable. At first glance she is shown as a happy high school student, but under that exterior was an ugly past that caused her to ignore it and put up a front to hide it. When she is reintroduced into badminton, her rage against her mother is what fuels her to be just as cruel to her opponent and everyone around her. What’s even worse is when she hops back and forth between her happy and depressed demeanor because of the clashing contrast. When Ayano’s mother returns and acts like she did nothing wrong, I can see where Ayano gets the guilt free personality from. Uchika explains that she left Ayano to allow her to improve, but she doesn’t really explain it more than that. I don’t agree that leaving her only child was a positive way to instigate improvement from her. What’s worse is that Ayano was led to believe that her mother left because she thought she was worthless to her when she lost that match, and went to another country to train another girl who also thinks of Uchika as her mom. Because of this Ayano questions herself about why she was playing badminton. At first it was in order to get revenge on her mother, by becoming the best so that she could “abandon” her mother like she did to her. Towards the end of the show, when finally confronting Uchika and settling things between her, Ayano finally finds a new purpose for playing: For herself and the aim of beating the person in front of her. In a sense this releases her from her attachment to the past and allows her to look forward to the future.

Overall it was a mixed bag that tried to resolve itself nicely, but it felt like a loosely tied knot than anything else. The thing between Ayano and her mother wasn’t clearly explained, or maybe I just missed it. From what I gather it was a mix of misunderstandings and poor judgement, and even with each other trying to settle this issue at the end, I felt the resolution to each other was not genuine. It was more like they each wanted to move onward without acknowledging fault. A conclusion like that always leave a bitter taste, and I feel that Ayano and Uchika both feel the same but don’t know how to express their sympathy, if they have any for the other.

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Harukana Receive

Harukana Receive was a good standard sports anime featuring beach volleyball. It stars our main character Haruka who goes from a newcomer to a very capable player. Thanks to hard work and the power of friendship, everyone improves their skills in order to compete in the Japan Beach Volleyball Nationals.

It seems that a lot of people see this anime as an obvious fan service kind of anime just because all the characters would be donning swimsuit like attire every episode. Maybe it’s because I’ve seen a lot of anime that I didn’t really pay it much attention to it, focusing more on the game itself. Even if I don’t know too much about beach volleyball, I can tell that the creators of the show did their research through visual cues and game explanation. Overall it was a decent anime that was detailed with beach volleyball knowledge., presented with a straightforward plot.

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Hataraku Saibou

This anime seems to be a favorite for everyone this season, myself included. Essentially each episode teaches its viewers about the inner workings of the human body, focusing on specific cells and their assigned tasks. The main characters include the Red Blood Cell, White Blood Cell, Platelets, Killer T Cell, Macrophage, and so on.

The information given throughout the show was accurate, but hard to digest especially when the subs cannot fit it all at the same time. It’s still understandable if you just watch what unfolds throughout the episode, but it’s something to mention. Visually I think that everything was great, easy to understand what every cell does in an anime way: Red Blood cells carry things throughout the body, Platelets help repair the body from open wounds, and White Blood Cells/Killer T Cells/Macrophage destroys invasive pathogens.

I enjoyed the anime with its fun and animated way of showing us our cells at work. I think we’ll appreciate our bodies more knowing that we have these characters protecting us 24/7.

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Isekai Maou to Shoukan Shoujo no Dorei Majutsu

I’ve been skipping a lot of the new isekai (another world) animes as they tend to be generally the same thing. This one however caught my attention because the main character was not a weakling nor one who outwardly showed himself as a pervert. Diablo is summoned into another world that is similar to an MMORPG he played back in his world, but different in subtle ways. He retains all his abilities from his character avatar as a Demon Lord. When Rem and Shera successfully use a summoning spell, the enslavement part of it backfires and turns them into Diablo’s slaves, thanks to his ring that reflects all magic. Because he is a hikikomori, he is socially awkward and so relies on his avatar’s demeanor when speaking in order to convince everyone that he is indeed a truly powerful and feared Demon Lord.

As I mentioned, what drew me to this show was Diablo’s character. He was strong and knowledgeable, but had faults that was relatable. Whenever he went into his internal dialogue, you can figure that he was like others who would just stay at home playing on their computers for many hours without going out or interacting with anyone. Whenever he did speak, it was always in a overlord manner; stiff and sometimes rude, but always trying to find the best solution for everyone.

I liked this anime mainly because of Diablo, and of course the fan service was a bonus too. I honestly don’t think this will get another season as more isekais will come to cover it up.

Also, I choose Rem, that is all.

 

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Shingeki no Kyojin Season 3

The start of the third season of Attack on Titan definitely has a different feel to it than the previous seasons, mainly because the plot is moving forward at a good pace. Unlike the titan fighting that has become a staple of the first two seasons, we’re finally getting into whose responsible for the titans and why they exist in the first place. I’m 10 episodes into the season, and so much has happened that’s helping to put the pieces in place for figuring out why the world is the way it is. I think we’ll definitely get to the basement of Eren’s house close to the end of this season as I think that is where a big revelation will be reveled. Definitely looking forward to see what the mysteries of the walls will bring.

One other thing I want to mention is the first OP for this season feels very odd as it’s not action orientated as all of the previous ones have been. The song itself is OK but it’s one that I skip when starting a new episode, and I’m one who usually watches the OP of every episode of anime I watch.

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