Spring 2014: Some end of season thoughts

Ideally, I should make several posts and each one would talk about an anime I finished in decent detail. I tell myself, I will do that every season, but I never do. So, in the interests of time and in the interests of actually getting something out there, I will just concatenate some very short thoughts together into this one post.

Fortunately, I didn’t actually finish many anime, so this shouldn’t be too long. Naturally, since I watched so few shows to completion, it should be quite apparent that I had a positive opinion on most of the following.

I didn't actually finish this one, though it seems quite well liked.

I didn’t actually finish this one, though it seems quite well liked.

Kenzen Robo Daimidaler

Kenzen Robo Daimidaler 1

Okay, I didn’t actually finish Daimedaler, but I did watch 10 episodes or so. And, well, I only watched them because it was the show the classy group decided to watch. I would have finished it, if I wasn’t a clumsy goof who ended up missing the final classy call. Woops. I still feel bad about that.

Anyway, would I recommend this to someone? Probably not. Would I recommend it to someone to watch alone? Most certainly not.

That said, despite its perversions, Daimidaler did some very interesting things. Parts of it were genuinely funny (sometimes in a terribad kind of way, sometimes not), but it was more than just comedy.

I liked how it killed off the main character a few episodes in (woops, spoiler, but I doubt anyone cares). It takes a fair bit of guts to introduce the main character, only to kill him a bit later.

Kenzen Robo Daimidaler 2 Kenzen Robo Daimidaler 3

It also turned the second male lead into a penguin. That was bizarre and unexpected.

What I actually found interesting were the shows views on sex, love and general morals.

Before I get butchered for it, yeah it glorified sexual assault a fair bit (though I guess one could argue for an awareness argument or something, but I am not going there). What was interesting though was that the good guys were perfectly fine with sexual harassment and boob groping but had major problems with any genuine display of love and affection.

The bad guys were interesting in that they were far more accepting of their own sexuality. Ritz in particular was hilarious. Not only did she do strange things like ask to be groped or measured, but she also used her “God scrub” (a hand job technique) on her teammates.

Kenzen Robo Daimidaler 4 - God Scrub

Speaking of the bad guys, another interesting thing this show did was that the bad guys (the penguins) were in effect the good guys. They were the ones who were concerned with damaging public property and they had genuine feelings of comradery for one another. The good guys on the other hand (especially the perverted commander) had no problems with destroying stuff/killing innocents and discarding pilots when necessary.

I actually thought that last point was this show’s most interesting thing. Even the bad guy leader (the Penguin emperor) was often shown to be caring and noble. I really want to see this story in a perhaps, less perverse but still goofy anime.

Anyway, that is all I can really say on this anime. If you have a group of friends, some spare time and a penchant for terribad, you might want to watch this. I am sure you could actually break down and talk about some of the literary things it does, though it wouldn’t be a painless process.

Also, fair warning: The uncensored episodes have a fair bit of nudity. Just so you know.

Nisekoi

Nisekoi 2 Onodera Nisekoi 3 Chitoge

Believe it or not, I actually enjoyed Nisekoi. I am pretty sure this is because I, for the most part, stopped caring about who Raku ends up with and just enjoyed the harem antics as well as the absolutely fantastic faces. The girls were all very cute as well and that was enough to appease my shallow self.

Apart from one or two cast members, I thought most of the cast was quite well done and them all shined on the screen in one way or another. I also really liked the visuals and how the studio went about adapting a black and white manga.

I really liked Marika. That Tsugumi in the front though...not so much.

I really liked Marika. That Tsugumi in the front though…not so much.

Kanojo ga Flag wo Oraretara

Maids with guns? Nice.

Maids with guns? Nice.

I have mixed feelings on this one. I didn’t mind the harem hijinks too much. I did feel that the incredibly large cast meant we didn’t really build any close affection to any of them (though I have a crush on Akane).

Kanojo ga Flag wo Oraretara 1

Yes, I would like that as well.

The background story that eventually got revealed wasn’t actually terrible. I mean, it was silly and totally out there, but with enough willpower, a tenacious viewer could maybe, just maybe reason it out.

What I didn’t really like all that much was Souta’s characterization. He had four stages that he cycled through:

Happy Souta->”Souta sad over his upcoming death” Souta->”Souta deciding to take responsibility” Souta->”Souta realizing he shouldn’t carry the blame” Souta

I can understand the show cycling through the above once, but it did it again and again. I expect my characters to be human enough to at least learn a little from their mistakes and Souta most certainly did not do so.

Oh well, it was a decent show overall. Likely not something, I’d recommend wholeheartedly or rewatch, but I wouldn’t discourage it either.

Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka?

Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka 4

A show showcasing cute girls doing cute things isn’t that rare. There is normally one or two every season, but few could claim to be anywhere near as good as Gochiusa.

Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka 10

I am so glad I picked this up after a few episodes had already aired. This is cute girls doing cute things done right. If you don’t like cute girls doing cute things, then not only are you a monster (I kid, I kid), but you probably won’t like this show.

If you are okay with cute girls doing cute, occasionally yuri things, then you will like this. It is so well made. The visuals are lovely, the character designs are adorable and the plot lines for the episodes are not only cute and sweet, but at times heartwarming as well.

Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka 9

Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka 5 Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka 6

I apologize for the needless gushing, but this is a good show. It is like a nice warm, delicious latte. You really don’t want it to finish, but it eventually does, leaving you both sad and warm.

Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu ka 7

I love that smile. It just seems so kind, caring and understanding.

Ryuugajou Nanana no Maizoukin

Ryuugajou Nanana no Maizoukin 6

I ended up really liking Nanana. I thought it had a fantastic male lead (a rare occurence in anime), great side characters and it went about the whole treasure hunting thing really well.

Their hunts for treasure felt fairly adventurous despite the urban setting and doubts over the motivations of the other characters constantly lingered throughout the show. That was great.

I also liked how the show didn’t really dwell too far into the realm of melodrama. It went close a few times, but it pulled itself out well enough. Fights between group members were normally resolved quite quickly and mutual agreements were made almost unnaturally fast.

I am also a fan of the show’s main villain (Hiiyo Ikusaba). He is my kind of character. He is selfish, self-motivated and yet he isn’t actually evil. He just doesn’t let other people stand in his way. He was always a delight on screen.

I hope they get the funding for a season 2. The ending of the 1st season left enough room for one, that is for sure.

Also, Tensai is the absolute best character in this thing. I love her so much.

Ryuugajou Nanana no Maizoukin 3 Ryuugajou Nanana no Maizoukin 4

 

I still can’t decide between Tensai x Juugo or Juugo x Yukihime.

A good NPC

Draggle described her as an NPC. I think that is apt description.

Nanana is the most boring character. I do like her boobs character design though.

Ryuugajou Nanana no Maizoukin 1 Ryuugajou Nanana no Maizoukin 2

Mekakucity Actors

Mekakucity Actors 1

I feel like Mekakucity gets a bad rep because of a convoluted plot and too much time wasted on glorious visuals. I don’t really disagree with that assessment, I just don’t consider most of those bad things show breakers.

I didn’t mind the visuals. Sure, I have seen them all before, but I am too much of a baby not to be taken in by them time and time again.

I want to write a post on this someday, but for me personally, the finer details of the storyline don’t matter all that much. I am fine with understanding some of the story as long as I understand enough to understand most of the character motivations and most of the impact their actions have.

I don’t really think of Mekakucity as one big, cohesive act, but rather as a collection of related acts. Given the source material, I think this is an appropriate way of thinking for this show and when you think about it this way, some “acts” really standout and make the entire thing worthwhile.

Mekakucity Actors 3 - Ayano in a sundress

Acts like the mall takeover, Kagerou Daze, the monster’s departure, Ayano’s “suicide”, Ayano’s Theory of Happiness, Ayano in a sundress and various others were all very memorable. I was especially fond of Kagerou Daze, fond enough to make a post for it.

My absolute favorite scene from this show though was Ayano’s farewell to Shintarō. That may just be favorite scene from anime that I have seen this year. Everything about that “I am sorry I died” was absolutely perfect.

Urgh. My heart.

Urgh. My heart.

No Game No Life

No Game No Life 40

NGNL did a few creepy things with Shiro and Steph (though, who doesn’t enjoy watching Steph getting bullied). The lead, Sora was also kind of a perverted, siscon jerk.

No Game No Life 1

That is what was bad about this show. Everything else though was great.

I hesitate to call any of the challenges “intelligent”, but they were most certainly very interesting. You’d think that we’d get tired of seeing Sora and Shiro win all the time, but we never did.

And that is because NGNL always kept the viewers on their toes. The sense of danger and suspense never went away until the final reveal and as formulaic as it might have  seemed, it never got old. And the fact that despite the tension Sora and Shiro were still able to treat everything as a game hammered in just how crazy they actually were.

There were many great references. Steph even did a WRRRRYYYY in one episode.

There were many great references. Steph even did a WRRRRYYYY in one episode.

The mysteries surrounding each race and the world itself were enticing as well.

Apart from perhaps Shiro’s brother complex and Sora’s sister complex/slightly perverted nature, I was actually quite fond of most of the cast. Characters like Steph and especially Jibril won me over.

No Game No Life 3 - Jibril

Mai Waifu

Mai Waifu

No Game No Life 5 - Jibril

 

The priestess was also, err kind of hot.

The priestess was also, err hot.

The visuals and the music were great as well. All in all, I enjoyed NGNL quite a lot and would be quite happy if they announced a second season. If there is a second season, I do hope they explore some of the other race’s lands. The human city is interesting (visually), but it is too human! The hints we got of the other territories suggested a pretty vast, creative world.

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  1. #1 by Highway on July 19, 2014 - 12:11 am

    I think I got to 8 episodes of Daimidaler before I couldn’t be bothered anymore. It was much better after they killed off the first protagonist, but still not good.

    All the other shows you watched I finished, and of them I liked Nanana the best (and I liked Nanana’s character). It was just a nice mix up show, where it was frequently doing something you didn’t expect, and had a good main character in Juugo, good supporting character in Tensai, and good secondary characters.

    Kanojo ga Flag just got weighed down by its own ideas. Too many girls (there were like 3 harems worth), too many story ideas, and they tried to cram them all in a single cour series. Not that it would have worked if it were longer. I wish they’d dumped everything starting from the sports festival and just done an ordinary harem show.

    I had a much easier time enjoying Nisekoi than other people, because I realized from the beginning that it was going to be a total runaround and nobody would ‘win’ and noone would make any progress and it was only going to be about putting these girls in situations and have them get worked out with nothing actually happening. With no expectations it was a lot better.

    My favorite show of the season was Love Live! Yeah, it was pretty much a cruise to the championship and a victory lap, but it was a perfect example of giving the audience exactly what they want. No faked up drama, no challenges, no problems besides the most minor of things. It brought the series to a lovely conclusion (almost, because there’s going to be a movie) and made you happy watching it. And they remade Snow Halation, and also worked in a reprise of Bokura no ima wo naka de (the first season’s OP) on the stage that it was set on from the first season. Amazing circularity, lovely closure.

    I also liked Kawaisou, Isshuukan Friends, Kamigami no Asobi, Sidonia, Soredemo Sekai wa Utsukushi, and Soul Eater Not!

    • #2 by Reiseng on July 20, 2014 - 11:53 am

      Don’t worry. I don’t think there was any point in watching any number of Daimidaler episodes.

      I agree, Nanana did a lot of unexpected things. It wasn’t twist heavy per say, it just didn’t follow convention. That was probably one of my favorite things about it as well.

      Yeah, Kanojo had way too many girls and was a bit too ambitious for what it achieved.

      I actually ended up watching Love Live season 1 last season. I thought it was pretty good, well except for the drama towards the end. I will hopefully watch season 2 sometime (since many folk tell me it is good).

      I should probably watch more of those other anime you mentioned. At the very least, what I saw of Kawaisou and Isshuukan wasn’t bad (also Soredemo, but I have read a good chunk of the manga).

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