Everything Else, Winter ’15, Week 1: Mediocre beginnings

Yoru no Yatterman - 0102

Just some quick impressions of shows that I won’t dedicate a post to, and y’know, the obligatory weekly rankings.

Quick Impressions

Ansatsu Kyoushitsu Ep. 1

Ansatsu Kyoushitsu - 0101

This is the show that people keep clamoring for me to watch and blog — “Are you gonna watch Ansatsu Kyoushitsu? Are you? Are you?! ARE YOU?!” —  but I just don’t get it. There’s no way I could dig up enough words to dedicate a post to this show week in and week out. Anyway, its about Koro-sensei, and he’s a supervillain who can destroy the Earth if he wants to. He agrees to leave the planet alone for now, however, if he gets to teach a classroom of thirty students. Still, he’s going to destroy the Earth by the end of the year… supposedly. I mean, where would he go once the Earth is gone? He’s fast, but he’s not intergalactic fast. Not only that, he seems to derive a lot of enjoyment out of Earth and its various cultures, so it’s just a lose-lose to destroy the planet. But I’m sure if I stick around long enough, I’ll figure out what Korosensei really wants and how he ticks. I’m just not sure I want to stick around.

In any case, the government of Japan hopes that one of those thirty students can kill the guy, and whoever does so will receive ten billion yen. There’s some intriguing stuff like why Korosensei decided to become a teacher, or what’s so bad about Class E. But all in all, I’m not particularly hooked by the show. It doesn’t make me laugh, and the premise is just whatever. I mean, Korosensei isn’t even a bad guy. He’s actually a good teacher, and as the show develops, the kids will actually form a bond with him. So I’m not even watching to see if he gets killed. Right there and then, the story just kinda falls flat for me. In fact, a teacher taking over a class full of misfits is something that I’ve seen plenty of times in live dramas. This time, of course, we use the anime medium to give the teacher special powers, but that gimmick isn’t enough to get me hooked. Maybe if this had been a dark comedy, I’d be more interested.

Kamisama Kiss 2nd Season Ep. 2

Kami-sama Hajimemashita 2nd Season - 0201

Aaaaaaand the formerly cute monkey turned into a creepy-looking shota. I have nothing else to say about the show. The current arc just feels too familiar. I don’t quite remember the name of the show anymore, but I remember watching a recent anime about a girl trying to impress the gods in Izumo… Maybe all these anime series are just starting to blur into one giant mess in my mind.

Koufuku Graffiti Ep. 1

Koufuku Graffiti - 0101


But seriously, I did watch the rest of the episode. Just as I suspected, the show isn’t worth my time. It’s vapid as hell.

Kuroko’s Basketball 3 Ep. 1

Kuroko no Basket 3 - 0102

Man, it looks like Kuroko’s punching the ball every time he passes it. You ever hear stories about how Brett Favre would throw the football so hard, it once broke a teammate’s fingers? That’d probably be a regular occurrence here if Kuroko no Basket was remotely real. Then just look at that light beam. What the fuck am I watching? The rest of the episode then introduces a villain character, which is… well, I’m not sure what to think. From a pure storytelling perspective, I guess I shouldn’t really care that the show has a villain. After all, it adds drama to the story. As someone who watches a lot of basketball and sports in general, however, having a villain is really just over-the-top and ridiculous. Anyway, I haven’t watched anything related to this show in a long time, so it’ll be a while until I learn everybody’s names and their personalities. Don’t expect me to comment on their character development for a while…

Log Horizon 2 Ep. 14

Log Horizon 2nd Season - 1401

Some stuff about Kanami. It seemed kind of boring, so I’m glad the winter season has me occupied enough that I just don’t have time to blog about Log Horizon anymore.

Soukyuu no Fafner: Dead Aggressor – Exodus Ep. 1

Soukyuu no Fafner Dead Aggressor - Exodus - 0101

The first third of the episode introduces the premise, so you get to see just how hopeless the situation is. The show then tries to introduce all of the characters in the short amount of time that it’s been given, but it’s even shorter than what Durarara!!x2’s characters got. Not only that, the personalities here are subtler, so it’s even harder to get a feel for their characters. Oh well. I’m not writing a post about it every week, so I’m not particularly concerned that I know relatively nothing about the story. I’ll just keep watching it until it literally pains me to do so. As for the other stuff, the backgrounds look decent, but I’m not impressed with the character designs. The monsters look whatever.

The Rolling Girls Ep. 1

Rolling☆Girls - 0101

The show’s got a ton of energy, and it looks really good on the eyes. I just don’t have anything to say about it. The plot doesn’t really interest me. It’s something about how Japan has fractured into a bunch of independent nations again, and naturally, these nations will squabble with each other over their territories. Someone called this a better Kill la Kill, but they accomplish different things. Cute girls fighting in stylized ways doesn’t mean that the two shows are the same. The Rolling Girls feels like a light-hearted slice-of-life anime. Right off the bat, Kill la Kill had multiple plot threads to develop, and a mission for the heroine to accomplish. I’m not seeing any such mission in The Rolling Girls. I’m not saying that one is better than the other, but it’s silly to compare them. But if I do have anything to say at all, it’s that the first episode of The Rolling Girls just doesn’t have much of a hook. I initially had the anime scheduled as one of the shows that I would post about, but after watching the episode a few days ago, I just couldn’t think of anything to really say about the show. I’ll keep watching, but I’ll only cover it in these weekly Everything Else posts from here on out.

Yoru no Yatterman Ep. 1

Yoru no Yatterman - 0101

That seemed like a decent origin story. I still have no clue what the rest of the story will be like, though, since becoming a villain is a far cry from a sad, little girl having her hopes and dreams crushed by the very people that she once believed in. I can’t believe forgiveness can be so difficult. What exactly is the Yatter Kingdom hiding that they have to desperately keep others out? Then again, if the Yattermans are really such jerks, then the little girl’s not really becoming a villain anyway. I briefly considered the possibility that we might actually have a show where it would be fun to root for the villain, but I doubt this little girl will grow up to be evil or anything. She’s no Frank Underwood. Even so, the show might still be fun to watch… just probably nothing more than fun.

Weekly Rankings

No quick comments this week, because I’m short of time.

1. Death Parade

2. Garo: The Carved Seal of Flames

3. Parasyte

4. Tokyo Ghoul Root A

5. Yoru no Yatterman

6. Maria the Virgin Witch

7. Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata

8. Ansatsu Kyoushitsu

9. Akatsuki no Yona

10. Aldnoah.Zero 2

11. The Rolling Girls

12. Yuma Kuma Arashi

13. Durarara!!x2

14. Soukyuu no Fafner: Dead Aggressor – Exodus

15. Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso

16. Cross Ange

17. Kuroko’s Basketball 3

18. Gundam: Reconguista in G

19. Log Horizon 2

20. Kamisama Kiss 2nd Season

21. Shinmai Maou no Testament

22. Juuou Mujin no Fafnir

23. Seiken Tsukai no World Break

24. Absolute Duo

25. Koufuku Graffiti

Weekly Question

So what’s got you excited? What’s lived up to expectations? What hasn’t lived up to expectations? What has surprised you for better or for worse?

20 Replies to “Everything Else, Winter ’15, Week 1: Mediocre beginnings”

  1. The show then tries to introduce all of the characters in the short amount of time that it’s been given, but it’s even shorter than what Durarara!!x2’s characters got. Not only that, the personalities here are subtler, so it’s even harder to get a feel for their characters.

    This is going to be a tricky watch for you, since the show assumes that you are already acquainted with the characters. After all, they already have four years’ worth (in story) of background material laid out. Anyways, to help you a little, for most part, the characters to follow are mostly Kazuki and Soushi, as they are the ones that have been the focus of the franchise for most of its run.

    the backgrounds look decent, but I’m not impressed with the character designs.

    Hisashi Hirai’s character designs is pretty much a love hate affair. And the guy can do only six freaking faces.

    The monsters look whatever.

    You can’t have a cool looking monster with story-breaking powers at the same time. That is just too criminal.

    1. This is going to be a tricky watch for you,

      I’m not invested in it, though. I’m not going to force myself to write a post on it every week, so I’m just taking it as it comes. It’s like, “I’ll keep an eye on you in case you get interesting.”

  2. So what’s got you excited? Jojo is my cup of tea, so yeah! Yatterman seems pretty interesting, gives me Tiger & Bunny and Kill la Kill vibes. Death parade was pretty good also, but I just dislike all the religious aspects of it, I wish it was a mere psychological battle with a bit of supernaturalism to it.

    What’s lived up to expectations? Jojo, Death Parade judging from the short movie.

    What hasn’t lived up to expectations?What has surprised you for better or for worse? I was surprised by Rolling Girls and Yatterman, not that much though. Aldnoah was kind of a let-down, not that I didn’t expect it.

      1. The heroes and masks, fighting other “heroes”, heroes with different ideals, mature main characters (of course not the girl). Well, it’s more appearance wise here, the plot however reminds me more of Kill la Kill and the girl is basically the new Ryuuko.

  3. I only had high expectations for Death Parade since I really liked Death Billiards and it didn’t let me down.

    I’m pleasantly surprised by Yatterman, Rolling Girls and Maria the Virgin Witch

    I really had no idea what to expect from Yatterman, but I enjoyed its first episode. Though I really hope there is a timeskip or something, I’ve come to accept teenagers as the MC, but a 9 year old girl? Ehh. Also I understand that comedy is a big part of the Yatterman franchise but I couldn’t really appreciate it. I don’t want a grimdark story, but the comedy just wasn’t funny for me and it felt misplaced. But besides that it was a solid start and it has potential.

    Rolling Girls doesn’t look like it’s going to be anything amazing, but its energy and art are enough to be entertaining for me. Though there is also a decent chance that it’s just going to be very stupid, but we’ll see.

    Maria had the ecchi tag, so my expectations were automatically low, but it was actually entertaining. But just like with Rolling Girls I’ve to see a few more episodes before I can say that it’s going to be a decent show.

    I’m disappointed in Ansatsu Kyoushitsu. I kept hearing how amazing the manga is, but ehh I don’t see it. I’ve no problems with ridiculous stories but this one just doesn’t do anything for me. Also I assume that it’s supposed to be funny, but it’s not the type of comedy that can make me laugh. It’s not unwatchable though.

    Nothing really has me excited yet, though Death Parade looks like the best new show by far

      1. It’s indeed something that doesn’t work for everyone. I can enjoy an anime comedy from time to time though (Nozaki was one of my favorites last year for example), but a big problem I’ve with most of them is that the comedy just feels really predictable and overused. Over the top reactions/perv jokes (though Panty and Stocking is my no. 1 guilty pleasure) were already not really hilarious the first time for me, but after seeing them so much they slowly become painfully unfunny.

      2. Yeah, I think the reason I’m so tolerant (though not particularly a fan) of anime humor is because of growing up with Ranma. Anime (and this includes Ranma in its prime) ain’t exactly the Saints Row series when it comes to dirty/ironic humor but I can still have a good laugh when it gets halfway there, provided some bumblef*ck character isn’t commenting on the weirdness.

        As for your questions, I’m pretty much in the same boat as you although I liked Garo more. Like Parasyte a bit more because it reminds me of Spiderman (another thing I grew up on) but it’s not a favorite of mine. I’ll wait a bit more before I cast judgments on anything else but Death Parade (and maybe Yuri Kuma but I don’t see the potential for anything more than Parasyte’s current level right now) is the only Winter show I’ve seen that I have “confidence” in so to speak.

        1. What puts Death Parade over the top for me is that it’s also gorgeous to look at. I like Garo, but its animation is pretty terrible by 2015 standards.

  4. Stoked for your top three shows this week (Garo, Death Parade, and Parasyte, in that order). Yatterman and Binan Koukou (the actual title is too damn long to type) look like sleeper hits. Not too keen on everything else though Tokyo Ghoul and Aldnoah.Zero2 should be fun.

    1. I think there’s a huge gap between the top two and the rest, though. Parasyte’s just getting by because it’s not bad, but it’s not particularly great these days.

  5. JoJo and Parasyte for me. Might try out death parade after reading your posts. The rest seems bad or just leaves me bored (Durarara comes to mind).

  6. This is why winter for me is the season to watch shows I didn’t have the chance to watch beforehand or go back to the 80’s and watch some classics I’ve missed. Winter always sucks yet there’s at least Yatterman that I’m interested. Tatsunoko has been reinventing their classic superhero series with a brand new take on them, and with casshern sins and gatchaman crowds been shows that I enjoy (loved chasshern, but that’s me been biased that it was pretty much a tribute to saint seiya) I’m really excited for this one and what they will do with it.

  7. :Koufuku Graffiti: Pass”
    What’s wrong with that scene, huh? You think it’s “demeaning” for a woman to want to be a wife? Huh? Is that it? You think being a housewife is a bad thing? You trying to conform women to how YOU think they should be?? Huhh~?? WHAT ARE YOU A SEXIST?!!

    No I’m joking. But really, I’m disappointed you couldn’t get into Koro-sensei, though you did make a very good point about its premise.

    “Then just look at that light beam. What the fuck am I watching?”
    Made me laugh too hard. It’s my sincere reaction, too.

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