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Let’s Talk About This Summer Season Thing

August 6, 2013

turningirlsBeen distracted by stuff. Blogging has been non-existent for nearly a month. That ain’t a good thing. So yeah, let’s talk about the summer anime stint.

I wasn’t really excited about anything coming out this summer. There were a few sequels and spin-offs coming our way– Gatchaman, Genshiken, Teekyu, Symphogear– but being excited about a sequel’s a lazy form of hype. I want genuine hype– the sort birthed out of anticipating the unknown rather than welcoming the comfort of the old. None of the genuinely new stuff really clicked with me after reading all the previews and other kneejerk pre-season predictions.

As for those sequels and spin-offs, they’ve more or less been exactly what I was expecting.

Genshiken: The Next Generation doesn’t have the same charms as the old crew. I knew that from reading the manga, which happens to be one of the few manga series I keep up with on a semi-regular basis. The crossdressing guy comes off as some sort of oddity– his crossdressing seeming more like some form of schizophrenia, and he comes off as something of a freak most of the time. I don’t think this is intentional, but it still comes off as patronizing or insulting most of the time. Add that to the two new girls who are as bland as can be and the new group just doesn’t gel. I think the main reason why those other two girls are kinda dull is because half of the time they’re just reacting to the crossdressing dude. They don’t get a chance to be themselves. They’re just the proverbial straight men to this other guy’s shtick. Fortunately, when the series focuses on the established, it’s pretty damn great.

Teekyu’s more of the same. Same with Symphogear, in that we’re getting more of the insanity we saw late in the first season rather than the banality of school life from the first half.

As for Gatchaman Crowds? It kinda sucks.

I really dug the first episode. It set things up, introduced an interesting lead character with Hajime, and got me excited.

Then the second episode spent half of its runtime on a scrapbook meet-up.

Then the third episode was all about using Twitter to keep people from drinking spoiled milk.

Yeah. No. Not interested. Yawn.

It’s a shame, because the visual style is pretty great. Then again, the director’s previous stuff– Mononoke, Tsuritama, and so on– all feel into a similar pattern. They all looked beautiful, but they were all dreadfully dull and wasted all of those cool visuals. I have a feeling I’m better off just avoiding this dude’s stuff from here on out.

Then there’s the new stuff. I gave Watamote and Servant x Service a try. The gag-to-crap ratio of both was pretty bad. Not much else to say about either of those shows, since there wasn’t much going for them to begin with.

Free ain’t bad, in that it’s your typical KyoAni thing with all the genders reversed. Which is to say I watched a few episodes and got bored, like Chunnibyou and Hyouka and Tamako Market and everything else by them that wasn’t the first season of Haruhi.

So what hasn’t bored me this season? C3-bu.

Yeah, I wrote a post about the first episode, but at the time I had no idea it’d manage to keep up the ridiculousness of that first episode. I figured the first episode was all for show, and it’d quickly devolve into a bunch of girls sitting around and doing everything but shoot each other with airsoft guns. Instead the thing’s starting to play around with the main girl’s fantasies and how they might actually be real and other crazy shit. AND they do more airsoft fighting than non-airsoft fighting. In a lot of ways it kinda feels like I’m settling for this. It isn’t great or anything, but at least it isn’t straying away from its premise like so many other “girls in clubs” shows, and it’s having fun with said premise. It’s simple shit, but at least it’s fun. Can’t say that about most other shows I’ve seen this season.

The real killer this season was Turning Girls. And yeah, “was” has to be used in this situation, since the thing’s already over. It was a seven episode Youtube series on Anime Bancho– the same thing responsible for the best series of the year thus far: Inferno Cop. It’s about a quartet of women in their late twenties dealing with the sort of ruts you deal with being a single working person trying to find some sort of enjoyment and fulfillment in this world. They fail at dating. They fail at being fans. They fail at the internet. But it’s the sort of failure you can actually relate with– endearing failure rather than the sort of “watching you fall down the stairs and we all laugh” sort of failure. Shame it was so short, but at least it didn’t get the chance to wear out its welcome.

Still. If we don’t get a second season of Turning Girls, then anime is over.

So yeah. Blog post. Bam and stuff. I’m working on another writing project right now. Fiction stuff. When it’s ready for public consumption I’ll let y’all know.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. August 6, 2013 4:20 PM

    Wow, Eccentric Family doesn’t even get a mention huh? Hehehe.

    I think there’s a new thing on Anime Bancho right now. I need to check it out sometime.

    • Landon permalink
      August 6, 2013 4:31 PM

      Honestly forgot it existed. That’s how bad it was.

  2. gedata permalink
    August 6, 2013 5:52 PM

    The Eccentric Family was supirsingly cool

    It’s made by the same fella who wrote the Tatami Galaxy, which I couldn’t get into. I dug it’s style and premise, but the narration keeps throwing me off. So I’m happy that this new show was more palatable, too bad you fellas couldn’t get into it.

    I ended up dropping Danganronpa, Free! and Gatchaman Crowds, not because they are bad (well Danganronpa is bad, but it has it’s entertainment value) but because of real life issues getting a hold of me. I would probably watch more on any other season.

    • August 6, 2013 6:41 PM

      Yeah, Landon and I aren’t fans of the “too much character development that doesn’t really develop anything, and no plot” method that Eccentric Family does (as well as stuff like Eureka Seven, Rahxephon, Penguindrum, and goddamn Robotics;Notes). Especially since in Eccentric Family’s case, it’s been five episodes and the show has been nothing but talking about stuff that’s already happened in the past with no real focus on developing the present situation (intermixed with the occasional cool scene). A lot of people like that presentation. I don’t, and Landon even less.

      Also, I’m not the biggest Tatami Galaxy fan (took me two tries to get into it and even then, I only score it an 8 on my MAL) but that one at least gave me an idea of what to care about. I’m not sure why I should care about these characters in Eccentric Family. I don’t sense any threat or conflict or anything of the sort to them.

  3. Landon permalink
    August 6, 2013 6:43 PM

    Gah! Forgot Danganronpa, despite kinda liking it. Maybe I’ll post about it later.

  4. Ratorn permalink
    August 13, 2013 2:53 AM

    You should check out spice and wolf, its probably one of the best anime in my opinion.

  5. Ratorn permalink
    August 13, 2013 2:55 AM

    Sorry if that was off topic… did not know anywhere else to comment…

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