Summer 2015 Anime Season: First Impressions

So much anime, so little time… this summer’s anime season has so much to choose from and I have been just so busy with my trans-pacific move from Chicago to Japan… It’s insane how much needs to be done when you pack up your life in one city and move across an ocean to live in another! So, for that reason, my impressions will be really brief and without screenshots (I’ll try to add them in later! Sorry…).

This season, I’ll be looking at 14 anime… If I’ve missed any notable anime, I’d love to hear your recommendations! What are your thoughts on the summer 2015 anime season?

Akagami no Shirayuki-hime

I really enjoyed the fun and quick-moving first episode, though the second and third episodes felt a lot slower despite the small bursts of action. It’s certainly cute and pretty, but I will say it’s been moving a little slower than I’d like. Characters have the potential to be really interesting, but so far they’ve been a little too perfect for my tastes with very few (if any) flaws, making them a bit flat in my eyes. I like the setting and premise so I’ll be sticking with this anime, but I’m really hoping for more depth from the main cast of characters.

First impressions: Fun set up with plenty of potential, but the cast could use more depth.
Verdict: Worth a look.

Aoharu x Kikanjuu

It’s vaguely like Ouran High School Host Club except with less silly harem antics and more BB guns. I find the main character, Tachibana, a bit annoying, the humor doesn’t really make me laugh, and I’m not excited by the BB gun battles. Overall, it’s not the worst thing out there, but I’m not hooked by the premise or characters, and honestly, it feels pretty bland all around.

First impressions: Gender-bending reverse harem meets BB gun battles…? Not as funny as it could have been.
Verdict: Skip it.

Charlotte

I liked the first episode well enough, especially since the main character is portrayed as a general scumbag, but the cast as a whole hasn’t been very appealing to me. The series actually reminds me a lot of Angel Beats!, with moments of humor (that I don’t find very funny) punctuated by moments of drama and sad back story (that I don’t find very sad or poignant). On the plus side, it looks relatively nice and colorful, even if I have no idea where this series is going, what the point of it is, or even who – or what – “Charlotte” even is. Maybe this will pick up in future episodes, but I’m not sure if I’ll be sticking around long enough to see for myself.

First impressions: Main character is a nice change from the usual fare, but the comedy and drama aspects fall flat.
Verdict: Skip it.

Gangsta

Gritty, violent, and harsh, Gangsta has been a ton of fun to watch, and is definitely my favorite non-sequel of the season. The characters make me curious to know more about their back stories and how they ended up in the situation they are in currently, and I really like the city, which often seems more like a character itself than a mere setting. There are hints at a greater plot happening with regards to the mysterious dog tags, and I hope it’s explored so that the anime doesn’t remain purely episodic. My only complaint at the moment is about the main female character who has been pretty passive so far.

First impressions: Fun action, curious characters, and a story that has room to grow.
Verdict: Watch it.

Gatchaman Crowds Insight

Gatchaman Crowds is back with a second season, picking up right where we left off in the first season. New characters are added, new enemies have appeared, and through it all, I’ve been enjoying the change in dynamics amongst the main characters. Definitely a must watch, especially if you liked the first season!

First impressions: New group dynamics add a fresh breath of air to the series.
Verdict: Watch it.

Gate: Jieitai Kanochi nite, Kaku Tatakaeri

This vaguely reminds me of a more serious version of Outbreak Company, except with far less comedy and parody, and a lot more military fighting and (possibly) politics. I really enjoyed the first episode, though the subsequent 2 episodes seem a little slower than I’d like (the main cast is just barely assembled by episode 3). I hope we get a little more time exploring the various characters and the fantasy world they inhabit, because even 3 episodes in, I don’t feel like I really understand the main characters well at all. But, being slated for 24 episodes gives me hope that more will be fleshed out in the coming episodes, so I guess I don’t mind that they take it a little slow in the beginning….

First impressions: Curious where the story will go, but story and cast set up has been slower than I’d like so far.
Verdict: Worth a look.

God Eater

So far I haven’t seen anything that distinguishes this post-apocalyptic anime from any of the others that have come out in recent years. It’s feels really basic in terms of plot and setting, and I don’t really feel much for the characters or the setting. The main hero seems as generic as they come, and I haven’t felt much excitement or surprise regarding the battles, characters, 3D monsters, or plot twists. I will say that I kinda like the animation, which looks a bit 3D-ish, and the backgrounds of the city were nice. Overall, it’s been nothing special so far, and unless they take this worn out premise and turn it on its head, God Eater will remain ultimately forgettable.

First impressions: Generic as generic gets.
Verdict: Skip it.

Joukamachi no Dandelion

I like the general premise and colorful cast of characters in Joukamachi no Dandelion, but I’m unfortunately not finding much of the comedy funny – which might be a bit of a problem seeing as most of the show centers around silly slapstick comedy. I’m also not sure why superpowers needed to be included in the story… it just seems like something randomly extra that really has little use in the anime. And, if superpowers were meant as a way to spice up the action and make the comedic situations more funny, it’s not working because I barely got through episode 2 because I found it so uninspiring. Anyways, it’s light and maybe it’s your thing, but it’s not working for me.

First impressions: Light comedy with a colorful cast that fails for me but might work for others.
Verdict: Skip it.

Monster Musume no Iru Nichijou

I don’t get the appeal of this show… It’s got a lot of fan service and I think it’s supposed to be funny, but nothing is really clicking with me. Maybe monster girls aren’t “my thing” or perhaps I just find it incomprehensible as to why every female in this show seems to be throwing themselves at the main male protagonist in various degrees of undress, but regardless, nothing in this show is making me want to continue watching.

First impressions: I don’t get the appeal of this show. At all.
Verdict: Skip it.

Overlord

Yes, it’s yet another “trapped in a game” anime, but I’m surprised to say I’m actually enjoying Overlord. While I don’t love how some female characters fawn over the main character, I do like how he isn’t human and how his in-game character’s personality is starting to warp him. Overall, it’s relatively funny and I’m looking forward to see where this one goes.

First impressions: Yet another “trapped in a game” anime, but at least it breaks the mold just a little bit.
Verdict: Worth a look.

Prison School

When I watch this show, my main thought is how dumb all the characters act… Exaggerated, over the top, impossible, and often just plain stupid, I’m finding this anime really hard to get through without a lot of breaks. Fan service abounds, which isn’t really my thing, but I do think it’s done well in this series – at least better than Monster Musume. Will I continue with this anime? I’m not sure, if only because I find the idiocy of the characters so hard to handle.

First impressions: Cringe fest!
Verdict: Consider it.

Rokka no Yuusha

While the premise seems simple enough with 6 warriors chosen to strike down an evil force that threatens humanity, at least the main hero seems a little different than the usual fare. Arrogant, confident, and with a fun fighting style that incorporates lots of tricks (breathing fire, poison darts, and the like), I’m enjoying Adlet as the main character. Things seem to be moving fairly quickly and I really hope there will be some drastic twists and turns in the story, which is so far nothing too original. I will say that I like the Mayan-influenced setting, which is not generally depicted in anime. But with only 12 episodes, I wonder if all 6 heroes will have time to be introduced and developed at all.

First impressions: Interesting protagonist, less than interesting story.
Verdict: Consider it.

Senki Zesshou Symphogear GX: Believe in Justice and Hold a Determination to Fist

Symphogear’s back with more improbable plot twists, crazy singing battles, and some of the best magical girl transformations ever animated. Yes, you could say that this series is “so bad it’s good”, but you know what? I don’t care. It’s fun, it’s silly, and I can’t wait to see where Hibiki and the power of friendship take us next.

First impressions: Just look at that crazy title… It makes zero sense! How can you not watch this series?
Verdict: Watch it.

Working!!!

It’s been about 4 years since the last season of Working!! ended, and I’m so happy that this little gem is back with more episodes! It’s still hilarious and silly, and this time it looks like the relationships might actually go somewhere? I’m guessing this will be the last season, seeing that the source material is completed, and the anime will try to wrap up all the relationships and story threads. Maybe it’s wishful thinking that it will all end nice and neat, but even if nothing progresses and all we get is idiotic comedy that makes me laugh every time, I’ll still be happy.

First impressions: Funny, cute, and silly… could the relationships in this anime actually be (dare I say it?) progressing?
Verdict: Watch it.

Advertisements

5 thoughts on “Summer 2015 Anime Season: First Impressions

  1. Looks like we’re watching some of the same shows – Gangsta and Shirayuki-hime in particular are really standing out to me this season.

    Sorry, I may have asked this before, but which prefecture are you moving to? I hope you have a safe trip if you haven’t left Chicago yet, and if you’re already here, then welcome to Japan! August’s intense humidity can be rough to get through, but hang in there! It’ll get cooler in… uh, October. ;_;

    Like

    • Thanks for your well wishes 😀 I’m leaving Chicago in about 2 weeks, spending a quick week and a bit with my family in Vancouver, and then I’m off to Japan! I’m moving to Tokyo… Should be quite the change, but I’m excited about the move! (but much less excited about the humidity… Seriously, it lasts until October?? haha T_T ) How about you? Where in Japan are you located?

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s