Anime Spring Season 2017 – Early Impressions – Part 3
[Segmented Version, page 3 of 3 – S to Z]
Sakurada Reset [Dropped]
Aka Sagrada Reset
In a perhaps more fitting X-Men metaphor than Alice & Zouroku, Sakurada is a town where well over half of the population have some special ability or other. Most of them are fairly specific and mostly useless/harmless, even though they also tend to defy the laws of physics.
Main dude Kei has the power of a perfect memory. He can completely recall anything he’s ever been seen or experienced with all of his senses. Which hasn’t really done much for him besides making it easier to study. He meets main girl Misora, who has the power to reset the world up to 3 days. She doesn’t actually rewind time, she says, she just rearranges the state of the world, and everyone’s memories of it, so that it is essentially back to when she “saved”.
Since that time still technically happened, Kei can still remember it. While this did not come up in episode 1, the synopsis says they end up working together to use their powers to fix problems assigned to them.
This is a very strange show that I get a bit of a Monogatari vibe from. It’s a very dialogue-heavy show. And I kinda found it wasn’t entirely for me. However, I am certain this is going be right up some people’s alley, and I won’t be surprised if it ends up really loved. It’s just not for me.
No relation to Sakura Trick.
Main girl Yoshino moved into Tokyo to study, and is now trying very hard to get a job after graduation. With no luck. She really doesn’t want to move back out into the country with her family, so she still keeps on trying.
Then one night she gets a call from a talent agency she did a one-time job for, saying someone had asked for her by name for a job. To head out into a small town in the country to be their “queen” for promotional purposes. She is initially hesitant, but considering they did ask for her by name, it’s an all-expenses-paid trip, and she thinks it’s just a one-day thing (spoiler: it isn’t); she agrees to head out there.
She arrives at a small town that might be even more destitute than the one she came from, and it turns out there’s been a misunderstanding. The local boss wanted a different Yoshino, but misspelled her name to his subordinates. Also, it turns out that Yoshino has been dead for a few years. So they’re left with this Yoshino, who manages to convince the boss to give her a shot.
So they take her out to the Kingdom of the Chupacabra to hold the crowning ceremony, and it’s not until after that when Yoshino arrives at the lodge she’s going to be staying that she finds out this job is not for a day, it’s for a year. Oops, she hadn’t read the contract.
She attempts to escape and take the train back, but of course the last train has left. There aren’t that many trains that run in small country towns. So can she be won over into staying? I’d hope so, or we wouldn’t have much of a show.
Now considering the character designs, I wondered if this was by the Shirobako team, but it seems like the character designer from there is the only one working on this team. Still though, I can see the potential in this. It has also done a great job of nailing that feeling of being a millennial. It deserves some recognition just for that.
It also deserves better official subtitles, but that’s a different story. Maybe someone’s doing fansubs, because the official ones are not up to the task.
Aka KADO: The Right Answer
So this released both episode 0 and episode 1 at the first time. As I started watching episode 0 I was quite curious why.
Episode 0 makes this feel like a show about government bureaucrats doing their job. We focus around Shindou Koujirou, a top negotiator for the policy planning department, as he takes on one final job before reassignment. The episode focuses mostly on fleshing out his character along with that of his assistant, and they introduce some of the other characters as well. I was actually fooled into thinking this would be a mundane show about this negotiator and his skills in getting the best deals for everyone. Which honestly didn’t seem that bad considering how well ep 0 sold it.
Then once the job is over, the two of them finally go on vacation. While the plane is on its way to take off, the aliens arrive. A giant cube, 2 x 2 x 2 kms, appears in the sky and sets down on the runway, right on top of the aircraft. It doesn’t seem to crush it, so much as absorb it.
Episode 1 starts at that same point, doing a runthrough of the airport scene with a few extra bits, just in case someone didn’t watch ep 0. Ep 1 focuses on the outside response, as emergency services, airport personnel, and government agencies all work on how to deal with this thing.
Enter theoretical physicist Shinowa Kanata, a woman who’s a bit of a mad scientist, and very, very eager to explore this cube. She is sent out to the airport to study it and try to figure out how to get in. Anything and everything they try is repelled, including an AP round from a tank. She seems absolutely delighted by this.
The episode has a lot more going on than that, but I would simply suggest to go watch it yourself. The show is really particular about accuracy in everyone’s roles and titles, and how different agencies and services work. It really adds some very nice flavour to this interesting sci-fi story. The preview made it seems like episode 2 will be about what was happening inside the cube while episode 1 was going on. Looking forward to it!
Sekai no Yami Zukan
Aka The World YAMIZUKAN
Short. Fairly certain the title would actually mean “The Picture Book of the World of Darkness” or something like that. Literally: “World of Darkness Picture Book”. But I digress.
This is a strange show about a book that tells you horror stories. It really is in a picture book style, and almost entirely devoid of actual animation. The first story was a decent one, as well. I’ll probably keep watching just because I like weird Japanese horror stuff. It doesn’t seem quite on Kagewani‘s level, but I’m still interested.
Shingeki no Bahamut: Virgin Soul
Aka Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul
This is set 10 years after Bahamut got loose for a short while and ruined quite a lot of stuff at the end of the first season. So while it might not be strictly necessary, I do recommend you watch the original series before this sequel. There’s been several recurring characters already, and I’m not sure how much the show is interested in explaining them again.
Our main character is Nina, who it’s hard to not think of as an RPG character. She seems to have maxed out her strength stat by using charisma as her dump stat and taking a disadvantage to luck. What I’m saying is that Nina is really, really strong, far beyond what any human could or should be, but she’s really bad at dealing with people, and events have a way of conspiring against her.
Nina is easily mesmerised by good-looking men, and tends to go really red and start day-dreaming if they dazzle her. After an unfortunate turn of events has the city guard chasing her, she is rescued by someone known as the Rag Demon (whom she was actually hunting herself before things got unfortunate). During the rescue it turns out that when Nina gets really flushed and horny over a good-looking man, she turns into a dragon. I’ve heard about hormones making you hot-headed, but this is just silly.
Oh, and there’s also some stuff about humans now attacking angel sanctuaries, having enslaved demons, and their king/emperor being up to no good, but listen. Nina’s the important thing, especially since she has now met Rita.
To be perfectly honest, I wasn’t that fond of the first series, but I did complete it, so I figured this was at least worth looking at. And I quite liked the first episode, so this could be good.
Shingeki no Kyojin S2 [Maybe]
Aka Attack on Titan S2
Four years later, and having experienced a lot of other anime, I must confess this no longer seems as great as it did back then.
So… yeah. Attack on Titan is back. It picks up the story basically exactly when S1 left off. Like, just a few hours later, I think.
Annie is captured, Eren is in hospital, a lot of people are dead, there’s a hole in the wall showing a titan’s face, and all of Eren’s teammates are under watch in case any of them are also secretly titans like Annie was.
You know, I did read ahead a bit in the manga after S1, and I was a little surprised at where the story was. I thought it was a little bit longer until it hit the events in the first episode with the talking beast titan and all that. But I guess here we are.
Eren’s teammates are evacuated as titans appear near them. Thinking the wall is breached, they all go off to warn the surrounding villages and to tell the people at the next wall. Knowing exactly what has happened it was pretty interesting to watch this unfold.
Now I’m not sure whether this is an attempt at making an extra dramatic return, or it just wants to one-up the manga, but it feels a bit edgier, grislier, and more try-hard than I remember. Especially towards the end, where before the ED there’s 40 seconds of a man being eaten alive by three titans, screaming all the time. No one needs to see that. The manga cut away as soon as he got grabbed. So once that starts, I recommend skipping ahead 40-50 seconds.
Now I was planning to watch this just because I am still a bit interested in the story, and I’m curious how far S2 is going to get, especially since they’re only going for one cour. I have an idea of what might be a logical end-point for them, but we’ll see. Or rather, I probably won’t see, because I decided to cut it. There’s just so much else I would rather watch. If the list shrinks enough, then maybe.
Sin – Nanatsu no Taizai
Aka Seven Mortal Sins.
This is one of those NSFW shows. Have we had one of them since Valkyrie Drive? Wait, yes, there was one, but it was really bad and I don’t remember the name of it. They’re a bit infrequent, is my point.
The plot, as it is: Lucifer is cast down from heaven and ends up in the lowest circle of hell: Cocytus. Where everything is really cold and tends to freeze up fast. There she is found by Leviathan, who decides the best way to heat Lucifer up is to remove her clothes and take a hands (and mouth) on approach. So it doesn’t take long until it gets its porn on, is what I’m saying. This is an anime that believes in nipples!
Leviathan is a bit of a Lucifer fangirl, and decides all on her own to stick with the fallen angel. Who merely decides it’s easier to go with it than try to push her away. A guide would be handy, if nothing else.
Levi shows her the way to Pandemonium where the Seven Mortal Sins gather, and Lucifer learns that Hell is not welcoming to an angel, even a fallen one. Lucifer is strong enough to hold her own though, and while initially proclaiming she no longer cares about Heaven or Hell, her tune has now changed, and she wants to rule over the Mortal Sins.
Though this is already where I had to call bullshit on the show. There are only six of them. Gluttony, Greed, Lust, Sloth, Vanity, and Wrath. Yet they still call themselves the “Seven Mortal Sins”, and in Japanese as well, so it’s not like they’re misusing Engrish. There are only six of you! Lucifer would make seven, but you haven’t recognised her yet. You just… are six, but call yourselves seven.
That’s not even getting into the promo image up there which has nine! This show is taking the piss.
It’s a porn show. There’s no two ways about it. Crunchyroll and other streaming/broadcast services that aren’t AT-X only have access to the censored version, but if you really want to watch this, go for the uncensored if you can. Otherwise I feel like it misses the point. I wouldn’t say the story and characters really hold up without the NSFW elements, but maybe that’s just me and my own perviness.
I can’t say it blew me away, but I’m shameless enough to keep watching at least a while longer.
Shuumatsu Nani Shitemasu ka? Isogashii desu ka? Sukutte Moratte Ii desu ka?
Aka WorldEnd: What do you do at the end of the world? Are you busy? Will you save us?
Here we have it. The most light novel title of all light novel titles. Light novel authors need to stop and calm down. The show is pretty good, though.
At the start of our story, it’s been five hundred years since humanity was wiped out, and the surface made uninhabitable due to being flooded by large, mysterious Beasts.
Everyone left alive now lives on islands in the sky, of which there are at least 68. And everyone now seems to be some sort of furry. The few still around who don’t have any fur, fangs, horns, feathers, or anything like that are known as the “disfeatured”, and are looked down upon. Rather aggressively so, even though it wasn’t explained why.
Our protagonist is the last human. As far as anyone knows, he’s the only human left. I wondered if something had happened those 500 years ago that made him immortal, but according to the synopsis he had somehow ended up on ice, and only recently got defrosted.
With everyone and everything he ever knew lost, he has resigned himself to living out his life in obscurity. Then one of the people looking out for him convinces him to accept a job as a caretaker at a military special weapons warehouse.
As he arrives, he runs into an old acquaintance, the troll Nygglatho. She apparently was his caretaker when he was younger, and she really wants to eat him. She knows how to behave though, hopefully, though she did add that if he ever wanted to be eaten, all he had to do was say so.
It turns out that the weapons he’s supposed to look after are living weapons. Most of them children. And just so you know, they’re adorable.
The opening of the episode might not blow you away, but once he gets to the warehouse, things do really pick up. I think this seems fun, charming, and interesting, and I’m looking forward to more. Even though I have a feeling it could also break my heart…
Right, this is supposedly somehow about the Japanese concept of items who are so loved they gain a soul of their own, but I will tell you this:
As the OP ends, it doesn’t even take 20 seconds before we get a double-handed accidental boob-grab, a “what was that for”, and a panty shot. That really told me all I need to know, so while I could watch more to see if it goes anywhere…
Tsuki ga Kirei
Aka As the Moon, So Beautiful
This is rare treat. It’s a show about a het romance that I really like. It’s not unheard of, I was really into Ore Monogatari and Momokuri because they both did a good job of selling the romance to me. And Tsuki ga Kirei‘s first episode also did that really well.
Akane and Kotarou are both third-year students at middle school, and in the same class for the first time this year. It quickly becomes obvious that Akane has a crush on Kotarou, and he might feel the same about her. However, they are both shy, awkward teens who don’t really know how to approach each other. Akane keeps trying her best, poor dear, but tends to freeze up and chicken out.
The show delivers this so well though. It also does a very rare thing of portraying just how awkward these kids are in a way that didn’t make me feel awkward at all. In fact, they just seemed very adorable in their awkwardness. Adorkable, if you will. I think the most succinct way of describing this show is: absolutely adorable.
I do wonder why Akane isn’t in the promo image up there though? In the first episode she was definitely the protagonist. While it did occasionally cut to his point of view, for like 90% it was her. Her thoughts, her actions, her attempts to get up the nerve to talk to him. Her nervous squeezing of her little plush toy to help herself calm down. I can relate to that kind of anxiety.
I just want to scoop them all up and hug them! It’s so rare to find a show like this, and it makes me want to gush about it all the more. There’s honestly not a lot more I can say though. If you like, or at least don’t mind, het romances, I would say definitely check this one out. It might melt your heart.
Warau Salesman New [Dropped]
Aka The Laughing Salesman
Apparently a re-make/sequel/resurrection of a show from 1989?
The titular salesman is Moguro Fukuzou. What he sells is the heart’s desire of his customers. He gives them exactly what they want, but then it tends to end badly for them. Especially if they try to break the deal/rules he set.
And I just felt like it was so mean. Like it was punishing people for having dreams and wanting a better life. He was taking advantage of people in vulnerable positions, and then punishing them for it. It’s just… pretty abusive, actually. I guess the title doesn’t lie, but fucking hell. I don’t want to watch this.
Zero kara Hajimeru Mahou no Sho
Aka Grimoire of Zero
This one really caught me off guard. It was setting up what seemed like a fairly generic medieval fantasy.
The witch-hunts are in effect under the banner of the Church, except here witches are actually real. Some are even trying to fight back. And there are beastpeople known as beastfallen.
So it’s safe to say the opening didn’t impress me. I figured this was going to be something dull and generic. It didn’t take long for things to pick up, though.
We start with our first main character: a beastfallen only known as Mercenary. He is actually stopped from introducing himself, but let’s get to that later. He sets out into the woods to hunt witches. As a mercenary, he earns a living by collecting the bounties on witches’ heads, and doing various other jobs. There is however also a bounty on beastfallen heads in many areas, so he’s often hunted himself. Either by bandits, other mercenaries, or witches.
Then he runs into Zero. Yes, the one from the title. She hasn’t really paid that much attention to the outside world it seems, and doesn’t really understand why Mercenary would hate/fear her. She just cares that he spilled her soup. He was running from another witch firing magic arrows at him, so she decides she might as well help out. However, he runs away upon discovering she is also a witch.
She finds him again though, and takes her revenge by starting to eat his soup. Soup for a soup, and all that. I love Zero so much, and identify with her a lot. She is definitely my favourite character of the season.
After seeing how weak she is from hunger (which is probably partly acting), and how she doesn’t seem inclined to attack him, Mercenary relents and agrees to give her some soup. It is almost impressive how quickly the show manages to establish a chemistry and dynamic between these two. Zero manages to convince Mercenary to join her in finding her lost book, the titular Grimoire of Zero. It is when he tries to introduce himself that she says she doesn’t care. Which I think might be at least partly because names hold a lot of power for witches. Zero isn’t her real name.
See, this is where it caught me off-guard. These two characters are really good, and work really well together. It reminds me maybe more of Spice and Wolf than anything else. So what seemed to be just another fantasy story, might instead become a very strong character-driven piece. It’s a little heavy-handed at times, but as first impressions go, this is one of my most anticipated titles right now.
A lot of this stuff I just copied down from the list for completion’s sake, just in case anyone cares to know all that’s out.
Atom: The Beginning: Coming out too late for this post, and I honestly have enough.
Berserk 2: I dropped S1 so fast.
BEYBLADE Burst God: I didn’t even know they still made Beyblade.
Boku no Hero Academia 2: Still not forgotten how fatigued I felt after trying S1.
Duel Masters 2017: I don’t even know what this is.
Dungeon ni Deai wo Motomeru no wa Machigatteiru Darou ka Gaiden: Sword Oratoria: While I’m sure this alternate viewpoint is interesting for Danmachi fans, I couldn’t get into the original show at all.
Future Card Buddyfight Battsu: I don’t know what this is.
Idol Time PriPara: I have not seen PriPara.
Kyoukai no RINNE 3: I still remember how much I hated Rinne’s father.
Tomica Hyper Rescue Drive Head: Kidou Kyuukyuu Keisatsu: While I am a little curious about this Transformers knock-off, I really do have enough.
Natsume Yuujinchou Roku: Sixth season! I’ve not watched the first five.
Rilu Rilu Fairilu: Mahou no Kagami: Not seen S1.
Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata ♭: I barely remember what this is, but I think I only watched the first episode of S1.
Star Myu S2: I really lost interest in S1.
The Snack Attack: As the blurb said it’s made in collaboration with Level 5 I was kinda interested, but I just can’t find it anywhere.
Uchouten Kazoku 2: Not seen S1.
Yu-Gi-Oh VRAINS: They still make Yu-Gi-Oh too?
I somehow keep making these posts longer. Making more work for both myself and the readers. Ah well.
I actually thought Winter Season did fairly well, but compared to how many strong and good shows there are this season, it’s barely even comparable. It is too early to say if any of these can really measure up to Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid or Kemono Friends, though. Winter may not have had a lot, but the best shows set the bar really high.
The extremely staggered release for new shows seems far more pronounced than I’m used to, though. One or two releasing later isn’t uncommon, but this time so much is spread out across over more than two weeks. They got started before we were even in April.
As for what I’ll be watching, I gave up on the idea of limiting myself to just 10 shows. While there are some I can see maybe not panning out, I’ve already cut as deep as I’m comfortable right now. In another couple of episodes I will likely have a better feel of what is and isn’t worth sticking with.
Watching: Alice & Zouroku, Frame Arms Girl, Grimoire of Zero, Hinako Note, ID-0, KADO: The Right Answer, Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul, Re-Creators, Sakura Quest, Seven Mortal Sins, The Royal Tutor, Tsuki ga Kirei, Twin Angel Break, WorldEnd.
Shorts: Cinderella Girls Theatre, Girl Beats Boys, Makeruna, Sekai no Yami Zukan.
Maybe: Attack on Titan, Fukumenkei Noise, Granblue Fantasy.
14 full + 4 shorts. Eesh. I’ll figure this out somehow. See you again at the mid-season update!