Hey, everyone! Apologies for being away for a while; I’ve been keeping quite preoccupied with schooling and other projects. However, I never miss the chance to watch some great shows, and I hope you’re prepared, because this season was quite good overall. Ready for some opinions?
You know what really stuns me about anime? It’s the fact that the most simple things can bring about so much joy. Hyouka is a series that markets itself as a “mystery”, and it’s certainly a mystery how it manages to stay enjoyable after playing its best cards early on. That’s right, the show definitely hits its climax around its first or second arcs, and sadly does slow down for the remainder of its 21 episode run. But you know, it’s KyoAni’s stunning animation mixed with some of the loveliest character interactions I’ve seen in a while that keeps things so fresh. If you’re expecting huge murder mysteries like the days of Sherlock Holmes, don’t hold your breath too much. However, do know that there are wonderful little nods to Holmes and other famous mysteries (like the ABC Murders by Agatha Christie) that is much appreciated. One thing I have to note is that a few characters may start to feel stale about the time you reach the denouement, but that opinion may vary. Oh, and once you see those glowing eyes in full motion, you’ll be hooked.
I must stop allowing synopses deciding which series I’ll end up watching, because while Kokoro Connect’s outer premise sounds ridiculous and a recipe for disaster, it’s turning out to be one heck of an interesting series. As mentioned, the idea of a group of high school friends suddenly experiencing a phenomenon where they mysteriously swap bodies with each other sounds like it could just hit rock bottom, but it’s actually a portal into a story how even the closest of friends can lose faith in each other and find times of trouble. Not only do they have to find a way to prevent an unknown entity from controlling their entire lives, but they also have to keep their basic living standards and emotions in check to prevent disasters. Another thing it does marvelously is integrate an ending sequence that just oozes emotion, right into where the episodes need it most. Let’s not forget the fantastic opening either though!
Rinne no Lagrange
Alright, I definitely hopped on the Rinne no Lagrange bandwagon quite late, but I’m here now, so let’s talk a bit about it. Without attempting to be heavily biased, I’m not quite a fan of mecha series. Since I got that out of the way, I’ll say that this series has a wonderful charm and has definitely surpassed my barrier to allow me to enjoy it. This series has a fantastic soundtrack mixed with some very nice visuals and a simple but charming story that can hold your interest at the very least. I’ll say that it’s not something I would jump out and suggest to the world to watch immediately, but for anyone who enjoys having fun, I can definitely agree to giving it a chance. This show seems to share a little bit of what’s good about Macross Frontier, and that’s music, Nakajima Megumi and stunning visuals. The characters are all very fun, and the protagonists are a wonderful blend of adorable and entertaining. As I previously mentioned, it probably won’t be a show for everyone, but I have a feeling many of you would probably lean more towards liking it. If you asked me to rate it, I’d say it’s a success, maru!
Sword Art Online
I just had to watch this one after catching the preview live at Anime Expo and then hearing the full opening in concert before its release. Sword Art Online takes the concept of being trapped in an MMO hell, where an in-game death is the actual equivalent of losing your life in the real world. Risk always stays with the players as they must clear the 100 floors of the game to escape safely. An ideal tactic would be to band together and utilize a combined strength to overcome the challenges, but with such an open world with endless possibilities, players turn sour. Players get greedy, and others simply refuse to work with others. The protagonist Kirito is such an individual, but slowly he’ll have to learn that not everything can be accomplished alone. The series is still in its early stages, but I can tell so far that it plans to take a spiraling road towards its ultimate ending. In between actually clearing floors, there are nice little side stories that introduces characters and opens up the world a little bit more, which works well enough. If you’re wanting “in your face action”, I’d recommend finding a different series, but this definitely is up your alley if you don’t mind a little sidestepping.
If you love comedy, you gotta love Yuru Yuri. If you love adorable things, you gotta love Yuru Yuri. Of course, if you love yuri, you’ll probably enjoy Yuru Yuri. The amazingly lovable series makes a triumphant return with a second season, and it’s even more glorious than its predecessor. Why? Well, lots of reasons, but if I had to sum it up into two words, it’d be Yui and Horie. The ever elusive character of Akaza Akane and her lovable seiyuu Yui Horie tugged us along the first season without a proper appearance, but here she is, in full glory. As for the rest of the show, the laughs just keep on coming. Ever wanted to see Chinatsu’s hair devour ping pong balls? Or maybe you wanted to see Akari actually get a little attention? Well, you just might. WATCH IT NOW.
I’d like to point out that I’m also finishing up the second season of Saki and also fully experienced the glory of the K-ON! movie. Overall, I really enjoyed this season, and I look forward to what’s coming up in the Fall. Cheers!