Winter 2018 Anime at the Half Way Point

Ok fine winter 2018. You can be a good season if you feel like it. I’m being honest here, there are some honestly great shows airing right now. And no, they are not just shows that started airing the fall, though that does help improve this season’s quality by quite a bit. So everyone should be happy now. I made a declaration for how good it is. Winter 2018 is officially good now. Yay!

Yeah fine, I ran out of things to say. Let’s get to talking about this season’s shows. Just beware spoilers, ok. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Watch these right now:

~March Comes in like a Lion S2 and The Ancient Magus Bride:

I honestly don’t feel like I can recommend these two shows enough. Especially since I’ve talked about them enough. They are both emotionally resonant pieces of art that you shouldn’t avoid. Seriously. I don’t think I need to say more on this. Still, if you want more I wrote two posts that talk about what each shows does well in detail. Magus Bride’s post here and March Comes in like a Lion’s post here.

~After the Rain:

OMG, how is this show so good? I know that the premise is a little off putting, because a teenager shouldn’t have a crush with some one in their 40’s, but I am trying so hard to find a complaint other than that. The writing is good, this show is incredibly beautiful in art style and animation (I haven’t watched Violet Evergarden, so this show is my go to for beauty right now), the directional style is something special with all the showing and not telling directional style, and I can keep going. If this show isn’t on your radar for some reason, please find some time to watch it. It’s completely worth it.

~A Place Further then the Universe:

Why? Why is this show capturing me so much? I know that I have complaints about it. I mean the plot is simple and how the characters are not as complex as they could be, but it works for me. In fact, it more than works for me. The emotions feel real, the characters actually feel real too, and their personalities are well defined and distinct from each other. This is a cute girl doing cute things show in some ways, but the journey to Antarctica isn’t something that a show like that would do. My only complaint so far is that the idol girl feels like an afterthought, but she does add a lot to the show itself, so I give that a pass.

~Today’s Menu for the Emiya Family:

What is this show and why does it exist? Does it exist in some weird alternate universe in which everyone is friends or what? How weird is it that a fate universe in which every character can sit down and eat with each other on good terms feels wrong compared to the stuff that fate usually provides? That being said, I love this show. I love how the characters interact, how gorgeous it is in general, how the food looks, and just almost every detail about it. For something that shouldn’t exist, I’m glad it does. I’m just waiting for more of it to appear on Crunchyroll. There are only two episodes of it right now.

Then these next:

~Hakata Tonkotsu Ramens

I would call this show pretty stakeless all things consider, because our protagonists are the ultimate bad ass hitmen of their general area and seem to have plot on their side, but I do like this show quite a bit. Why? Because I think I am beginning to understand what this show is. It’s not a serious show at all, it’s about a group of Looney Tune Hitmen trying to live out their lives. Why else would baseball connections somehow work with the concept of being a hitman? Well, this is the truth that I’ve discovered at least. And having all this set in my head, this show is just a lot of fun. I definitely look forward to it every week. It’s not as amazing as it could be, because I don’t feel any real bite from this show.   

~How to keep a Mummy:

Ok fine. The secrets out. Scott can like cute things from time to time. I don’t mind little kids, especially the ones with an interesting personalities, and I love pets. Mummy is such a good show for me, because it’s so nice to see everyone get their pets and having them play with each other. It is an incredibly simple show, but a very nice watch none the less. Especially when you need to cool down for the day. I love how we follow a pet play group every week, but all the pets are small mythical creatures. Best thing ever, sort of.

~Beatless:

Every week, this show just maintains its level of being slightly above average. I don’t know how, but it’s like the crew behind it has no ambition at all. Yet, everything is still decent. The world is still decently developed, the technology is cool, it’s exploration of the human psych, the rules of robots, and how we treat objects that are sentient are interesting. It’s a cyber punk anime too, kind of. What am I supposed to do here? I am not wowed by this show, but I still look forward to it each week because I like a lot of what I see and the ideas that are presented to the audience. I just wish it had some ambition behind it. That’s all that is missing here for me.

~Kokkoku:

It took until episode 6 for me to say “alright, this show is pretty good”, because the show kept explaining itself to the audience without showing. Yes, the concept of people living in a time freezed state is cool, but why didn’t the show just show us all these rules behind it instead of just having people sit around and explain the concept to us. What is this, a fate show? Now I can sit back and say how cool the concept is and see how relatable and interesting the cast is. I just wish it was like this in the beginning, but I am glad I stuck around. Stubbornness can have its own rewards.

~Darling in the Franxx:

I still consider this show on just good side, but it is capturing me. While the sex puns and sex mechs can be distracting and there are a lot of vague elements in the show still, I am finding a lot of good things about it. This show is written a lot like Grimgar is in a lot of ways. The story starts pretty bland with barely there characters, but develops everyone as a team as time goes on. You know what, that’s ok. That all works for me. Also, I am so glad these mechs are hand drawn. Do you know how hard it is to get hand drawn mechs these days? So all in all, it’s an alright show and has the possibly of being a great one as time goes on.

These Shows are OK

~Takagi-San:

Once again, this is an incredibly simple show with a simple premise. One teenage girl constantly picking on and never losing against a teenage boy. That’s about it, yet I am still liking this show and not getting tired of it yet. It’s truly confounding me of why that is, but not everything has to make sense to me for me to like it I guess.

~Osumatsu-san S2

Another skit comedy. I do think that this second season isn’t as strong as the first, but there are some great episodes here. Episodes that go beyond the rest of this second season’s material, which keeps every part of this show as watchable

~Black Clover

Yes, I am still watching Black Clover. And you no what, I might stick around for its full run. It has been entertaining enough for me to watch at least and I am getting attached to the characters. Even Asta who yells too much. The pace is still as slow as something you would expect from the first few episodes. The character work needs some fixing and Asta could learn to yell a little less, but it’s a decent show when there is a plot happening that adds some intrigue. The action is unique as well, so I am finding more plusses to Black Clover as it goes on.

WTF

~Grancrest Senki

Ok, what is this show and what are is it trying to do? Yes, it is a fantasy show and had some intriguing elements to it at the beginning, but it never does anything with them. In fact, it’s like each episode is its own arc or something. Since that is the case, everything is rushed. Because everything is rushed, there is little development of anything, if there is anything called development in this series. I once described the show in my mind as like the middle parts of Gundam Wings where factions would just randomly change hands because they could and not affect the story on any level. The difference here is that these random factional and political alignment changes don’t have strong characters for us to care about. So therefore, what is this anime? Why am I still watching it? Why is show so weird and engaging regardless? I guess the only solution here is to keep watching it for now.

So you may have noticed some additions since my first impressions post. If you haven’t, now you know! Woo, what a reality. 2017 still spoiled all of us quite a bit, but I say that even with 2017’s great seasons behind us, this one is pretty good too. I guess it only had a slow start (ha) for me because there weren’t a lot of shows I was interested in until the second week of this season.

So what shows are you watching and think should be worth checking out? Did I avoid any? I don’t know if I would be able to fit them in my already big (for me at least) line up that I have going on right now.

10 Comments Add yours

  1. Irina says:

    If you ever do figure out what Grancrest is, do let me know. I think someone tried to help production by creating a bulletpoint of all the narrative events and they mistook that for the actual script….

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Scott says:

      I hope the bullet point thing is true.

      I don’t know Irina, I don’t think I will ever figure out what this show is or trying to do.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. prattle says:

    “If this show isn’t on your radar for some reason, please find some time to watch it. It’s completely worth it.”

    Agreed/ Please give After The Rain a shot. It’s a very well polished product.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Scott says:

      Yes, all of this 😁.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Karandi says:

    After the Rain is one I’ve got marked to binge once it is finished. After reading what it was about I didn’t think I’d like it week to week, but the positive reviews have definitely got me interested so I’ll catch up on it between seasons.
    I think I like Hakata Tonkotsu Ramens more for not being all that serious. I love the characters and the situations and the humour that runs through most of the encounters and it is just great fun to watch.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Scott says:

      Hmm, that sounds pretty fair actually!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. DerekL says:

    I think I’m about done with Mummy myself… I can only take so much mindless aimlessness, and it’s heading firmly into a rut.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Scott says:

      I hear you and I see all of that, but adding more monsters and seeing then interact has kind of won me over.

      Like

  5. I pretty much picked up After the Rain on a whim. The premise might seem off-putting, but the animation is gorgeous and the characters strike me as very realistic. The anime pulls this off while maintaining a good sense of humor. For those reasons, it’s also one of my favorites this season.

    Darling in the Franxx certainly strikes me as much more off-putting than After the Rain. A part of me still wants to watch it because I’m a huge fan of Trigger and it’s been getting good reviews. The hand drawn mechs are tempting also.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Scott says:

      Just know that a lot of the questionable stuff in Darling lowers by a great degree after episode two. There are some remainders of it, but it’s not in the forefront as much.

      Liked by 1 person

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