Hi all and welcome to the first check in for the Summer Anime season. I’ve decided that with mos anime going around 12 episodes that checking in after 3 episodes seems like a reasonable way to go about the season. I am watching a lot this season including shows I’m not actually reviewing because there are just so many shows that have my attention. Not all of them are good so to speak but so far I’ve been pretty entertained.
Other than that top 5 shows I’m watching, I’m not going to rank the others at this point in time given some shows have only had one or two episodes. Instead I’m just grouping them into anime I kind of like and anime that I’m watching just to see if they end up getting better or because I’m weirdly curious and a bit of a sucker for finding out how things end.
Anime I’m Watching and Hoping They Improve
Demon Lord Retry, Arifureta, Are You Lost? and Do You Love Your Mom and Her Two Hit Multi Attacks?
It probably goes without saying at this point but Arifureta has ended up an incredible disappointment. I was worried it the sense of danger and the real trauma the main character experienced in the source and that it would end up just being a kind of mellow isekai but what we’ve got is far worse and even ignoring that the source exists, what has been shown so far is barely watchable even as its own story. For now I’m still attempting to review it weekly but realistically it has kind of fallen flat.
However, with Demon Lord Retry in the mix this season fighting for worst isekai it is hard to know who will win. While both shows have shown some improvement since their first episodes they are both a long way from being actually recommendable shows and are so far both lying in the pool of hard-core isekai fans only (as in people who will watch anything that is isekai).
When you throw in ‘Do You Love Your Mom’, I actually know this one isn’t all that bad (or at least the first episode wasn’t, episode two takes a dive into some weird fan-service with the mother). My main issue though is that I just can’t stand the two main characters and find the mother’s childish carry on disturbing and the son’s attitude impossible to really take without wanting to swat him one. I’m not reviewing this but I’m still watching because potentially this one could be okay if the characters manage to grow on me.
The other anime I’m watching but not reviewing, Are You Lost? is a perfectly fine short anime with a cute girls do survivor kind of flavour. It isn’t particularly good or bad but at 12 minutes an episode it is a nice wind down after a day at work so I’ll probably see it through to the end unless the fan-service gets too intrusive.
- Arifureta: From Commonplace to World’s Strongest. Dir. K Yoshimoto. White Fox. 2019.
- Maou-Sama, Retry! Dir. H Kimura. EKACHI EPILKA. 2019
- Are You Lost? Dir. N Nagayama. Ezola. 2019
- Tsuujou Kougeki ga Zentai Kougeki de Ni-kai Kougeki no Okaasan wa Suki Desu ka? Dir. Y Iwasaki. J.C. Staff. 2019
Anime I’m Watching and Enjoying
Uchi no Musume, Dr Stone, Cop Craft, Fire Force, Granbelm, Demon Slayer, Isekai Cheat Magician and The One’s Within
Yes, there are 8 anime in this category that are all perfectly watchable within their genres and reasonably entertaining this season, and yet are still not able to break into my top 5 (just a sign of how enjoyable the start of this season has been). I would solidly recommend any of these shows to someone if they asked for an anime in the genre, with the only real question marks hanging on Demon Slayer and The One’s Within.
Demon Slayer because it has been on a sharp decline since it made my top 3 during the Spring anime season and The One’s Within because I suspect there’s only a very niche market for the kind of weird it is throwing around. The One’s Within isn’t so much a good anime as it is an anime that is intriguing enough that people like me will probably watch it all season despite the overall concern that it isn’t going to end up doing anything that actually makes reasonable sense.
And yes, of the straight isekai anime airing this season, Isekai Cheat Magician has so far been the most solid showing. Admittedly, those who like comedy more might prefer one of the other titles, but if you were looking for something to replace Kenja no Mago on your viewing line up now that it is finished, Isekai Cheat Magician is looking like a solidly average isekai which for me is enough to be entertained for twenty minutes each week.
- Uchi no Musume no Tame Naraba, Ore Wa Moshikashitara Maou mo Taoseru Kamo Shirenai. Dir. T Yanase. Maho Film. 2019.
- Dr Stone. Dir. I Shinya. TMS Entertainment. 2019.
- Cop Craft. Dir. S Itagaki. Millepensee. 2019.
- Fire Force. Dir. Y Yase. David Production. 2019.
- Granbelm. Dir. M Watanabe. Nexus. 2019.
- Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba. Dir. H Sotozaki. Ufotable. 2019.
- Isekai Cheat Magician. Dir. T Daisuke. Encourage Films. 2019.
- Nakanohito Genome [Jikkyouchuu]. Dir. S Oonuma. Silver Link. 2019.
Top 5 Anime
Number 5: Fruits Basket
It’s sitting a lot lower on this list than it was in Spring but this is not an indication that Fruits Basket has slipped. No, the excellent qualities that propelled it into the top 3 in Spring continue. The problem is that it has a lot more competition this season and while I’ve always been a fan of the story, Fruits Basket by its very nature is pretty low key and excels in quieter moments of emotional outpouring. It just doesn’t have the exciting spark to compete right now with some of the openings the new anime of Summer have delivered. That said, this one is a highly recommendable series and if you didn’t watch during Spring, now would be a great time to catch up.
Would you like to read more about Fruits Basket’s feels?
Images from: Fruits Basket. Dir. Y Ibata. TMS Entertainment. 2019.
Number 4: To The Abandoned Sacred Beasts
Honestly, I am loving this one so far. The idea of looking at the super powered soldiers after the war is done and they are no longer needed, as well as the fact that their power is taking them over and destroying their humanity seems really interesting and I’ve been enjoying the show so far. While I don’t know if it will stay in my top 5 through the whole season, there’s a lot of competition this Summer, as far as opening acts go, this one was memorable and hit just the right notes for me to be signed up. I’ll be reviewing this one every two episodes for patrons this season.
Reviews of To The Abandoned Sacred Beasts
are available for Patrons on Patreon.
Images from: To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts. Dir. J Shishido. MAPPA. 2019.
Number 3: Given
I was definitely looking forward to this one and it hasn’t disappointed. With excellent production values (though perhaps not quite the budget it needs) and a solid if simple story, the first two episodes have been utterly charming. The fact that I’m covering this one with Irina which means I get to instantly talk about it after watching with someone else just makes it even more fun. So far Given has hit all the right notes in setting up its characters and the music sequences, few though they have been so far, have been spot on.
Want more rambling thoughts from Irina and Karandi on Given?
Images from: Given. Dir. H Yamaguchi. Lerche. 2019.
Number 2: DanMachi Season 2
I’m not going to lie, nostalgia and a love of the source are certainly fuelling where this one is sitting on the list right now. That doesn’t mean what we’ve gotten in the anime has been bad, however if I was judging this purely on the two episodes that have aired this season, DanMachi wouldn’t be sitting quite this high. Still, I’m absolutely sure by the end of the season this one will be one of my favourites (if not my favourite). It is Bell, Hestia, and the gang back for another round of fun adventure and conflict and to be honest I couldn’t be happier. If you liked the first season at all, this return has not disappointed so far.
Want more discussions of DanMachi Season 2 from Irina and Karandi?
Images from: DanMachi 2nd Season. Dir. T Hideki. J.C. Staff. 2019.
Number 1: Astra Lost in Space
I have no idea if this anime is going to continue to hold this number one place, particularly when there is such steep competition this season, but for now I have to say that Astra Lost in Space has been a truly surprising and fun experience. A good old space adventure with no giant robot fighting in sight (at least not so far and contextually it wouldn’t make a lot of sense). Kids going on an innocent school trip into space and ending up stuck and on their own. The cast has been fun to get to know and I’m hoping they continue to flesh these characters out. The tension has been real. So far it has looked pretty great. There’s a lot to like here and I’m really excited for more of this one.
Want To Read More About Astra Lost in Space?
Images from: Kanata no Astra. Dir. M Andou. Lerche. 2019.
What do you think of the Summer Anime season so far? What are your top 5 shows after the first quarter of the season?
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