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Posts Tagged ‘Silver Spoon’

2014! It’s been quite the year for me, pretty much entirely because I graduated university. I’m like, an adult or something now, it’s horrifying, but it hasn’t stopped me watched my foreign children’s cartoons!

And it’s not been a bad year for anime. Masaaki Yuasa and Shinichiro Watanabe directing TV series, the start of the most popular part of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, Mushishi returning after 9 years without the slightest dip in quality, there’s been some pretty notable stuff going on. I can’t say there were any major surprises or new franchises that I feel are going to stand out as classics beyond Kill la Kill and Space Dandy, and the latter is chiefly because of how hard it was pushed on western audiences (not a knock on its quality, of course), but there were still a good clutch of series and films that I enjoyed greatly.

Before I indulge in a stunning display of originality and discuss my top 10 anime of the year, a quick reminder: a series counts as being from 2014 if it ended this year, even if it’s a long runner. Split cours – a single series that has seasonal gaps between chunks of the series – count as whatever year the last cours ended in (hence the exclusion of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders, because it technically hasn’t finished yet). Neither of these are strict, but it’s a good enough guide. The edge cases don’t matter because they were never going to be on the list.

With that out of the way, here’s my top 10 anime of 2014!

Happy new year!

Happy new year!

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Silver Spoon! It was a great little series that aired last summer about a city guy entering an agricultural high school for ~reasons~ and all the crap (figurative or otherwise) that he has to deal with while there. It was funny, insightful, full of character and thoroughly enjoyable, and definitely deserved – nay, needed – this second season!

Being a very direct continuation of the first season (as in, it starts almost exactly where the first one left off) this won’t be a particularly long review – it’s definitely one of those cases where everything I said about the first series still applies, minus the few differences I’ll elaborate on – but it’s still worth discussing in at least some detail. After all, I came away from the first season thinking that it was great but lacking… something. It was close, VERY close, to being a legitimately amazing show, but didn’t quite have the edge to take it there. Would a direct continuation be able to bring in what was missing?

Early mornings will forever be the actual worst

Early mornings will forever be the actual worst

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Silver Spoon

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Silver Spoon (or Gin no Saji if you’re so inclined) what was met with a bit of an incredulous reaction when it was announced. A series about a teenaged boy attending an agricultural high school? By the mangaka of Fullmetal Alchemist?!? Not exactly the follow up anyone was expecting! But it’s apparently inspired and informed by Hiromu Arakawa’s childhood being raised on a dairy farm, so we could at least expect a fairly accurate depiction of farm life. But with even that aside, there were still some worries lurking. The premise is surprisingly similar to Moyashimon, another noitaminA series about life at agricultural school (well, university) and it wasn’t too long ago that we were burned by its sequel, Moyashimon Returns (which was boring).

Fortunately, I can safely say that Silver Spoon is pretty great. The premise of a city dwelling teenage boy choosing and moving to an agricultural high school makes for a ton of hilarious fish-out-of-water shenanigans, gives us a relatable perspective on such a culture, and allows for some really interesting questions to be asked and discussed regarding how people perceive food and farm animals.

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Farm animals perceive Hachiken as food

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