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Archive for the ‘Spring 2015’ Category

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Did you have a good year? I hope so. My 2015 was alright. Pretty unremarkable, a couple of new experiences, but mostly just been working. But for anime though, it’s been interesting I guess. I wouldn’t call 2015 a bad year for anime by any stretch, but thinking back on what I watched while writing this top 10 I was struck by how few series really left a major impact in the fandom, and more importantly how few left much of an impression on me. I think I’d overall characterise it as a solid, if unassuming, year for anime. Still, there’ve been at least a few that I’ll be remembering for a while, and enough that I wasn’t struggling for things to include!

Now, the definition I’m working with for ‘2015 anime’ is pretty broad, but a lot of other people are using it too so it’s nothing too radical or unexpected. It’s what I’ve been using for previous years: a series counts if it finished in 2015, and a film counts if it was first available for me to watch this year. I feel this is pretty sensible – you can’t exactly consider a show “best of the year” if it hasn’t even finished yet, shows that started last year wouldn’t get a chance otherwise, and expecting me to consider a film that I could’ve only watched in a cinema in Japan is just silly.

Before we get to the top 10, I want to talk about some anime that didn’t quite make the cut, but definitely deserve a shoutout.

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Ore Monogatari!!

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I love me a good shoujo romance anime, but doesn’t it get a bit old when the male love interest is always the same? Lithe, good-looking, a bit quiet and mysterious, you know the type. I guess Ore Monogatari!! felt the same way because they’ve given us a goddamn gorilla.

Ore Monogatari!! (localised as My Love Story!!) follows Takeo Gouda, a high school freshmen, who is tremendously large, strong, intimidating and, well, unconventionally attractive. He’s best friends with the handsome and popular Makoto Sunakawa, who has always drawn the attention of the girls since they were children – your typical shoujo hero. One day, Takeo saves the tiny and cute Rinko Yamato from a groper on the train and ends up falling in love with her. Thus begins the story of Takeo’s first romance, and all the adorable awkwardness that entails. It’s pretty good!

asd

Perhaps not the most romantic of meetings…

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The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya needs no introduction. A massively popular franchise that influenced a large chunk of the industry in its wake and set KyoAni up as a major player, it’s been conspicuously absent since The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya despite continued demand and plentiful source material. People have even gone so far as to read the light novels to get more!

You’d think then that the fans would clamour for anything even vaguely related, but the announcement of The Disappearance of Nagato Yuki-chan demonstrated otherwise. Broadly set in the same universe as the alternate one in The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya, this is a spinoff romantic comedy lacking any of the defining supernatural elements and instead centring around Nagato and her crush on Kyon. Hell, it’s not even written by the same author nor animated by the same studio. At least they kept the voice actors I guess?

This is pretty much not what Haruhi fans wanted, especially not after 4 years of longing. But after getting over the initial shock, I have to say that it’s actually not all that bad, surprisingly enough. Or at least, better than you might have expected.

Cuter, too

Cuter, too

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Kiniro Mosaic getting a sequel was a bit of a surprise. Sure it was a fun series, but I doubt it would be as fondly remembered were it not for that glorious finale – most of my memories are of it being a bit hit-and-miss, a little too slow, and good-not-great. But thanks to that finale it saw an immediate surge of popularity and sales and now here we are with Hello!! Kiniro Mosaic!

Good news! If you liked the first entry of everyone’s favourite cute-blonde-British-girls-doing-cute-things-in-Japan anime, you’ll undoubtedly love Hello!! Kiniro Mosaic. It is definitely more of the same, but so much funnier and more consistent this time around. The humour is on point for the entire series with every episode being stronger than just about any episode from the first series, and where that amazing finale was needed to make up for some of the shortcomings, Hello!! Kiniro Mosaic is so good that a scene like that would barely stand out.

They're back!

They’re back!

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BLOODBORNE HYPE.

I am so mad that the UK gets it last. I won’t be able to play it until tomorrow, as of writing ;_;

Red is not Bloodborne, Orange is not Bloodborne, Green is not Bloodborne

Red is not Bloodborne, Orange is not Bloodborne, Green is not Bloodborne

Anyway, damn has the winter season been spectacular! Between Parasyte, Death Parade, Yuri Kuma Arashi, Durarara!!x2, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure and, of course, Shirobako we have been spoiled for high quality, extremely entertaining anime. And that’s only the more-or-less universally acclaimed shows that I’m watching! Things like Maria the Virgin Witch have been getting a stupid amount of love, and there’s still a clutch of decent shows that haven’t been getting as much love, like Rolling Girls or Your Lie in April.

Best season of anime in a long while? Yeah. You know what, yeah. That’s not implausible. It’s downright probable. When people look at past “best seasons”, they’re usually dominated by one major show that goes on to become a classic backed up by a handful of decent shows; I can’t recall a season that was this consistently excellent across its series. It’s unreal, and so, so good.

The upcoming spring season pales in comparison. Still, there’s some stuff to be pretty excited for.

  • Arslan Senki
  • Denpa Kyoushi
  • Hello!! Kiniro Mosaic
  • Hibike! Euphonium
  • Kekkai Sensen
  • Lupin III
  • The Disappearance of Nagato Yuki-chan
  • Ore Monogatari!!
  • Owari no Seraph
  • Plastic Memories

I don’t know why I’m watching any of them when I can just be playing Bloodborne instead, but whatever. Here’s wot I think about them.

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