Top 5 Reasons To Watch Seasonal Anime

I haven’t done a genuine top 5 list in a while and I figured this week I might ease myself back into getting a few of these out from time to time. Then again, I realised writing this list that I came up with at least as many reasons to binge watch as to watch seasonally so guess what list I’m writing next.

Number 5: Bite Sized and Digestible

Sometimes in anime a little goes a long way. Seasonal viewing allows shows to be taken in 20 minutes (maybe 24 minutes if you watch the whole of the OP/ED/preview etc) and then you can sit back and think about them for a bit. When you watch an episode that is emotionally wrenching enough to leave you in tears, the break is helpful allowing time to reflect and really embrace where that story took you. Equally when an episode ends on that wondrous and triumphant high you can really take that feeling and carry it through the next week rather than instantly hitting play on the next episode and moving to the next emotional beat. Bite sized moments are excellent as they allow you to savour the flavour they deliver and they give you time to really digest what you have watched and turn it over in your mind before the next thing comes along. Definitely an advantage of seasonal viewing.

Number 4: Variety Adds Spice

When binge watching, particularly when taking on a longer running show, there’s a sense that you are kind of just committed to that endeavour. I will admit that while I watch a large number of seasonal anime, I am usually just watching one older show (or rewatching) usually in 3 – 6 episode chunks when I have time to watch TV. But what if I’m not in the mood for whatever I’m currently binge watching? Okay a sensible person would just start something else but clearly that isn’t me. I find with seasonal viewing, if I keep enough variety in my watch list there’s almost always an episode of something I’m in the mood to watch.

Number 3: Anticipation Is Awesome

While I’ve made my feelings around needless cliff-hangers relatively clear in the past, there’s something to be said about waiting for a resolution. In the world of now-now-now it is sometimes nice to be forced to sit back and wait for something. The next chapter release of an online novel series or the next episode of a show that has really got you hooked. In many cases anticipation of what is to come is more exciting than what you actually get and you can ride the high of anticipation for a whole week between anime episodes. This is something binge watching just cannot deliver as it is all about instant gratification.

Number 2: Enjoyment Extends For Months Rather Than Hours

This one is a bit of a double edge sword. Sure if you are really into an anime then you get to be excited about it every week for 3 to 6 months depending on whether it is one or two cour with seasonal watching. On a binge watch that amounts to 2 – 4 sessions of watching and could all be over within a week. Then again, the same is true if you are just not that into an anime or are finding it a little underwhelming. That feeling also extends for months. Still, given I love anime most of them manage to make it feel like time enjoyed and the few exceptions are what make the other anime feel even more fun.

Number 1: Join The Community in Conversation

The number one reason to watch seasonal anime though remains the wonderful anime community. These are the people you share your screen caps with, discuss your theories (no matter how off the wall they are), gush over a brilliant scene or rant about how something just fell flat after weeks of build up. They take watching anime from a solitary act and make it part of your social life and experience and it becomes even more fun to bounce opinions and ideas off of others. Sure you can discuss anime that are finished that you have binged but not everyone will be watching it right now (unless you have organised a group watch of something). If you want to talk with people watching the same show at the same time as you then seasonal anime definitely opens that door. Of course, it also allows for knee-jerk reactions and sometimes less than thrilling responses by the community.

So why do you watch seasonal anime?


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Karandi James



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27 thoughts on “Top 5 Reasons To Watch Seasonal Anime

  1. Agreed, those are definitely all reasons why I love seasonal anime. In particular #5 and #1 are my top 2. I love watching anime that are long too, but sometimes it just feels so much less intimidating to start watching a new 13 episode show than to tackle one of those 100+ behemoths. Then there’s the added bonus of discussing it every week online and getting to discuss a lot of theories and such. That’s something that never feels quite the same if it already happened in the past

  2. All great reasons, but anticipation only works for me in very exceptional cases. My magpie mind is too easily distracted by the next shiny anime to spend much time anticipating that other shows I watch. I very much live in the moment when watching anime.

      1. See, that’s the advantage when you’re naturally easy to distract. The downside simply doesn’t have much weight. I mean, I’m a slow reader because I find myself not paying attention every few pages or so, and I have to go to back a few paragraphs. When there’s nothing going on, I’m perfactly capable of distracting myself with random associations.

        Perhaps that’s part of why I put less emphasis on story than other people? It’s possible…

  3. Very nice post, I do think this way you can discover a lot more anime indeed.
    I live to irregular for seasonal though. One week I am fully busy the other week I have nothing to do. Other weeks I miss all odd days the other all even. To hard to keep my scheduele clean.

  4. Ha, nice try Karandi but you’ll never convince me to stop binge-watching! I’m kidding, these are great and valid reasons. Though I’ll still probably stick to binge-watching unless a show I’m excited for is airing (SAO).

    1. Thanks for the nomination Matt.
      I didn’t use avoid spoilers as a positive largely because manga and light novel adaptations have quite the vocal fan base.

      1. You’re welcome Karandi!
        I think I understand what you’re saying. If an anime is from a manga or light novel, fans will probably be the first know to what happens in the story.

  5. I must admit, anticipation is the big one for me. I watched anyone before streaming existed, and were didn’t have a binge option. It was one episode a week and that was it. It’s nostalgic for me.

    1. For me it is the opposite. Outside of Sailor Moon that did air on Australian TV when I was younger, I had almost no exposure to anime prior to being able to download seasons or when YouTube began. Then most of the available stuff was done airing and so you would just watch a show and once that was done, find the next one. Streaming has now made seasonal viewing a possibility and it is something that radically changed my viewing habits over the last five years.

      1. That’s interesting. Did they kirsty boot air much at all on tv? We had cardcaptor, pretty cure, mew mew power, pokemon, digimon, and samurai pizza cats. Outside that it was all films on vhs.

          1. That’s a good point actually. Bar a brief period where we had free cable (they cut our water pipe while installing in the road and gave us a year free as a sorry), we only had terrestrial too. I wonder if there was more on there.

  6. All of this is pretty accurate and it works for me because I’m a huge scatter brain. There are quite a few downsides to like remembering everything that happened when you watch a lot of them and bring stuck in schedule and such.

    1. Agreed which is why I’ll probably cover the benefits of not seasonal watching and just binge watching next because I definitely came up with as many downsides to both as I did benefits.

  7. I watch seasonals so I can witness the community go bonkers over each episode. When watching anime that’s hardly relevant, it’s difficult to find a crowd out there that’s as reactive as a crowd watching a currently airing seasonal. It’s a lot more fun knowing of that crowds’ existence and getting to see the chaos they start. Domestic Girlfriend was really fun to watch in that sense. But Idk, that may just be my evil streak for seeking chaos showing its colors again…

    1. Watching the community reaction is definitely part of the appeal, though I will admit that some of the over-reactions to episodes at times are a bit of a problem.

  8. I do like to binge, but watching Rascal live and joining in on the conversations as it happened was a lot of fun. It definitely got me started on watching seasonal shows and talking about them weekly.

    Also, I’d second the variety aspect. I found that I would just pick up random shows because I’d seen everything that was out so far and ended up liking them better than the ones I selected to start with. It’s always good to expand your horizons.

    1. Yeah, when you are binge watching you tend to stick to shows that fall within your comfort zone but with seasonal you tend to try a bit of everything and at twenty minutes you kind of rationalise that it isn’t that much of a commitment each week even if it ends up not really working for you.

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