Thoughts on the Spring 2016 Anime Season

Hey There!

I shockingly watched a few things from the Spring 2016 anime line-up and thought this quick look at each show that caught my interest might be fun to do. This article will look at all the shows I watched and any shows that have caught my interest, but haven’t started/finished yet for whatever reason. Shows will be discussed in no real particular order and their may be minor spoilers. I wouldn’t expect this sort of thing each season either. With that, let’s get into it!

Mayogia (The Lost Village)

0c7a446d4b906b325acf65f78cbe4bd41459543054_fullEpisodes:  12

Episodes Watched/Completion Status:  Completed

Original Concept 

How do I put this? Mayogia, or The Lost Village in English, was a stupid show. It was a stupid show that I couldn’t stop watching. This series was strangely fun for my friends and I. I’ll be the first to admit that the writing wasn’t that great and there was a lot of dumb plot devices used in this series, but at the end of the day I found myself eagerly awaiting the next episode each week.

There are a few reasons this show caught my attention, the first being the mystery aspect of the show. As my readers should know, I’m a huge fan of the mystery genre so it should come to no surprise that I wanted to check this out. While the mystery definitely loses its magic towards the end of the series, the initial episodes did an excellent job at capturing my interest in the series.

Another big aspect in the show’s favor was the 1980’s ‘Paranoia’ RPG vibe this show gave off. They are constantly at each other’s throats over the dumbest things. One character is constantly yelling “we should execute them!” which is never suspicious. However, if somebody so much as sneezes that’s grounds for massive suspicion.

The characters are all nuts and when you finally start seeing some monsters, it only adds to this fact. The designs for the monsters were genuinely creepy, especially since a lot of the other designs are pretty pedestrian and uninteresting. This is definitely not the case for everybody, but color me impressed in this regard.

Overall, Mayogia didn’t take itself too seriously and was fairly funny at times even. I know a lot of people didn’t like this one but I would recommend people check it out if they haven’t already. At worst it’ll make for some decent laughs. For me, it was a pretty good time and I’d give it a solid 6/10.

High School Fleet (Haifuri)

high-school-fleet-haifuri-44258Episodes:  12

Episodes Watched/Completion Status:  Completed

Original Concept

High School Fleet was one of those shows that I didn’t expect much out of. Having recently finished Girls Und Panzer, I thought I’d just take a look at this show. However, by the end of episode 1 I was intrigued enough to keep going. The show throttled the line between overly silly and genuinely interesting for most of its 12 episode run. Ultimately, the show fell flat by the end and was pretty disappointing.

The problem with the show was with its story, it was really engaging for about half of its run but ran out of steam quickly after. Once the big mystery was solved, the story really didn’t have anything to offer. Well that’s not quite true, the episode where the girls hold a festival was probably my favorite episode in the entire series. It was funny and the rap was hands down the best.

Production IMS did a great job with the animation especially the CG battle scenes. They never looked really ugly or distracting which is fantastic. Character designs were also a plus in my book too. No real complaints here.

In the end, I wouldn’t really recommend this show to anybody. It had its moments and wasn’t terrible but it was nothing special either. If you are a big fan of the guy who directed Girls Und Panzer you might want to check this out, but most are better off passing altogether. 5/10 kind of meh.

Joker Game

77523Episodes:  12

Episodes Watched/Completion Status:  5/12

Novel Based

Joker Game looks like a slick, fast-paced, spy thriller that will have audiences on the edge of their seats. However, this is not the case. I was drawn in with how this series evoked Baccano! for me, as well as the general premise of a spy thriller that was promised. In some ways Joker Game has managed to deliver, but overall it ends up feeling rather flat.

Let me first start off with saying that I don’t think Joker Game is a terrible show. It has all the trappings of a homerun success, but just can’t quite manage to pull everything together successfully. Episode 1 (and 2 by extension) did a terrible job at getting me invested in the show. Mostly, characters talked a lot about fairly obvious ideas that were relevant to the plot before the episode ended on a “cliff-hanger.”

The show’s tone indicates that the series wants to be smart and have its audience think, but contradicts itself by spoon-feeding much of the information to the audience. Depending on how well read you are on certain topics and how much you are paying attention, a lot of Joker Game’s ideas are going to be overly basic.

This wouldn’t bother me as much, except that the show is really slow. The pacing has improved a bit as I’ve gotten further into it, but overall it takes too long on the setup given the payout isn’t too great. The stories are a bit too simple with predictable outcomes to anybody who’s even half attentive.

Production I.G has done a great job with the look and feel of the show animation wise. However, this is squandered due to poor directing. The show uses a lot of boring shots for scenes that don’t always convey the right tone for the situation. This is a real shame because some better framing and more interesting direction could have elevated some of the more dull plots. My biggest complaint animation wise is the character design, the spies all look too much alike. I can’t really tell them apart and since the series is mostly episodic so far, following a different spy each episode or so, I have a hard time becoming invested in any character.

d-agency_agents

The one time I could tell everybody apart clearly. They are pretty hard to tell apart outside of this scene when they don’t have their suits

I am confident that the series can improve by the end and it isn’t like I haven’t enjoyed it at all either. I’ll keep watching this one but I’m not expecting anything too great at the same time. This is one that I’ll hesitantly recommend if you are newer to spy stories or you are just really desperate for one. Watch this one at your own discretion.

Uchuu Patrol Luluco (Space Patrol Luluco)

79073lEpisodes:  13

Episodes Watched/Completion Status:  Completed

Original Concept

I finally get to talk about a show I really enjoyed! Space Patrol Luluco is the fist Trigger show to date that I enjoyed all the way through. While this series was a short form as apposed to the usual full-length series, it was easily one of the best of the season that I saw.

Luluco was funny and the story wasn’t bad once it actually got told either. The story isn’t anything fancy. It’s rather simple and straight forward, just over the top in typical Trigger fashion. If anything, the story is pretty normal, which is kind of the point for anyone that’s seen it.

Granted this show did have a filler arc. That being said, it was easily my favorite. Normally, I hate filler episodes, but for Luluco I absolutely loved it. Seeing Trigger reference their other works was hilarious and I just couldn’t stop laughing. My favorite episode was the spoof of Kill La Kill. Trust me, it’s gold.

While the show was over the top, like any Trigger production, it always felt grounded compared to their other works. Sure it was whacky and out there at times, but it never felt like the story lost track of itself and what it was trying to convey. I think this is one show that people should definitely check out, it’s a small time investment and will at worst be a fun time for almost any viewer. Great show, 9/10 for me easily.

Kiznaiver

kiznaiverEpisodes:  12

Episodes Watched/Completion Status:  Haven’t Started

Original Concept

Since I just talked about Trigger, I thought it’d be a good time to briefly mention Kiznaiver. I unfortunately haven’t had the chance to start this one, but after Luluco, I became a lot more interested in this title. While I hear this title is a lot less crazy for Trigger, the story supposedly is pretty similar to where Luluco ends up going.

The story is about a group of kids who have their feelings shared via some bizarre technology with the idea of bringing on world peace. It sounds kind of silly, but given how good Luluco was this season, I’m just really curious about this one. Since I don’t have much more to say, I’ll leave Arkada’s first impression video here in case you’d like some more information from somebody who’s seen some of it.

I’d love to hear some thoughts from you guys about this one in the comments. Will I like it or am I better off passing? Either way, it has one heck of an OP and has a signature style to everything at the very least.

Sakamoto Desu Ga?

79468Episodes:  12 (Plus a 13th unaired episode)

Episodes Watched/Completion Status:  Completed what aired, desperately await episode 13

Manga Based

Ladies and gentleman, Sakamoto was my favorite show of the season hands down. It was extremely funny and fun to watch. I eagerly awaited each new episode every week and just couldn’t get enough of this fantastic show. What’s even more surprising? It’s a Studio Dean production.

Each episode follows cool guy Sakamoto during his everyday life as a high school student. Usually, somebody tries to make him look bad in each episode, but by the end they only manage to make him look cooler. Some episodes are just short gags and there were 2 full episodes that were more story focused in the series.

As a whole, the episodes were all very funny and never got repetitive. There was one episode that was pretty poor compared to the others part way through, but it was an extremely necessary episode that setup the show’s conclusion rather well. I don’t want to say much else, because this is a show that I think is a must-see for any anime fan. I give it a 10/10 due to my shear enjoyment of the series. It helps that the ending is pretty solid too, even without the unaired 13th episode.

Re:Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu (Re:Zero for short)

79410Episodes:  25

Episodes Watched/Completion Status:  Haven’t Started

Light Novel Based

Another show I wanted to watch, but haven’t yet. I’ve held off on Re:Zero simply because I’m not sure if it will actually be good by the end. You see, it’s still on-going at the end of the Spring season. However, due to the rather positive reception thus far, I’m at least interested in it.

I don’t really know much about it, so that’s it for this one. If you’ve seen it, let me know your thoughts in the comments below and rather or not you think I’ll enjoy it. Please don’t spoil the show for me though, that’d take a lot of the fun out of watching a series like this since I know there is some kind of time-travel element involved.

That’s My Look At the Spring 2016 Anime Season

What were your thoughts on the season? Overall, it seemed like a pretty solid season for most people with more winners than losers. If I didn’t mention a show you enjoyed, let me know why I should check it out below. This is just what caught my attention and I typically don’t even watch currently airing anime, so this was a fun little adventure for me.

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