Week 10 has been interesting. Some things got better, some got worse, many shows shifted their character focus this week and some really showed us they were getting ready for their climax. I know some people have been fairly indifferent to the anime this season but this has actually been my favourite season so far in 2016. Most of the ‘still on my radar’ shows would have been must watch shows in other seasons this year so even though they have issues I’m actually enjoying most of them (with the possible exception of Izetta but that started as a must watch in its first episodes and has been sliding ever since).
As always, please feel free to tell me what you think about the season in the comments below.
I Must Keep Watching
- Yuri on Ice (Ep 10)
- Natsume Yuujinchou Go (Ep 9)
- March Comes in Like a Lion (Ep 8)
- Bungo Stray Dogs (Ep 22)
Do I have a higher category than this? Why not? Yuri on Ice… wow. Just wow. You know, it isn’t a perfect anime and we can critically tear it to pieces if we’d like but there are few anime that make me feel so much while watching them. This week was truly amazing and left me smiling for hours.
Natsume continues to be charming and just a very relaxing viewing experience. Watching an episode is like checking in on old friends and you don’t really need to do anything, its fun just being there.
Glad we had an episode of March Comes in Like a Lion this week. I just get more and more drawn into Rei’s life with every episode and the whole experience has been wonderful. I’m kind of glad this show has more than 12 episodes though because it really feels like things are really just getting going.
And just when I considered dropping Bungo out of this category they give Rampo a few moments to shine. That alone was enough to sell this episode to me. This show is still highly reliant on coincidence and narrative convenience but this season is entertaining.
Still On My Radar
- Lostorage Incited WIXOSS (Ep 9)
- Iron Blooded Orphans (Ep 34)
- Days (Ep 22)
- Flip Flappers (Ep 10)
- Izetta: the Last Witch (Ep 10)
WIXOSS brings us a new level of dark this week with crushing depression and suicide. That said, this series is playing on its strengths and seems to be bringing things nicely together even linking in to the previous seasons without being too hard to follow for newcomers to the franchise. Looking forward to how this will end now.
Iron Blooded Orphans dropped a bit this week. Not because it got worse but because it is at the mid-season point and the story is kind of in a lull whereas WIXOSS is going full steam ahead into its climax. I think Orphans might be suffering from its own run-time. Season 2 just hasn’t been as compelling as season 1 and while there are still plenty of points of interest I’m starting to get distracted.
Days is coming to the end of its run (though it kind of feels like a season 2 will be needed at this point – unless they actually do stuff up and get eliminated) and the quality of the animation has just not held up leading to my dropping it down the list this week. At times it was outright disruptive to the viewing this week. While normally I wouldn’t knock a show down for this, Days has had consistency problems from the start and this dive in quality this close to the end is just one more thing to take into account when weighing up how good Days has been as a series.
Flip Flappers continues to bewilder but we do seem closer again to an answer. The problem is every time they explain something you realise they haven’t explained anything and they only have a couple more episodes to really wrap things up. Here’s hoping they can resolve things.
Seems like Izetta has decided to take war reasonably seriously as we close in on the final episodes. Certainly the characters are hurting this week and there was definitely none of the silly asides or playing dress up that has filled so many earlier episodes. I may not be thrilled with how this series has played out but I’d like a solid ending to it at least.
Not Dropped But Not Sold On These
- Bloodivores (Ep 10)
- Trickster (Ep 10)
- Kiss Him, Not Me (Ep 9)
- Nazotokine (Ep 10)
Bloodivores ran around a lot this week so points for energy but minus a whole bunch for actual narrative and characterisation. Honestly, this show just doesn’t get any better but it hasn’t noticeably gotten worse but its kind of like trying to eat most healthy cereals for breakfast. You know it won’t hurt you but it doesn’t taste great so you have no enthusiasm for the consumption.
In fairness to Trickster, it actually is better than Bloodivores and yet knowing that Bloodivores will be done in 2 more episodes made the mess of an episode this week actually tolerable, while Trickster could drag out this mediocrity for another 14 episodes. Seriously hoping that Winter’s line up is good so that I can give Trickster a sound kick out of my list.
Kiss Him, Not Me delivered a generic and cliché filled summer episode but was back to being inoffensive and vaguely amusing so I put the terminally boring Nazotokine back beneath it on the list.
Nazotokine is living up to my lack of expectations at this point and continues to give us formulaic and relatively flat episodes where there doesn’t really seem to be any reason to care whether they solve the riddle or not. Admittedly, we haven’t actually seen the consequences of failure because it hasn’t happened yet, but it seems unlikely this show is going to bother upping the stakes at this point.
- Cheating Craft (Ep 4 – Dropped)
- Girlish Number (Ep 1 – Dropped)
- Nanbaka (Ep 2 – Dropped)
- Magical Girl Raising Project (Ep 2 – Dropped)
- Matoi the Sacred Slayer (Ep 2 – Dropped)
- Touken Ranbu – Hanmaru (Ep 1 – Dropped)
- To Be Hero (Ep 1 – Dropped)
- Occult;Nine (Ep 1 – Dropped)
- Dream Festival (Ep 1 – Dropped)
Alright, which character journey have you been most impressed with this season?