Thursday, July 7, 2011

And now for something different, the continuing spring anime

Don't expect me to do this every season, especially since the current trend is for more and more one cour shows, but when I started looking at summer shows I noticed that I had a few shows carrying over from the spring season as well. So why not write about why I'm continuing them (especially since I'm trying out a grand total of 10 new shows plus one or two older shows, I've got pleeeenty to watch right now) and hopefully convince some people to try out shows that they might have heard of but never checked out. Onto the post!

Blue Exorcist:
If my watching schedule becomes too full and I have to drop something, sorry Blue Exorcist but you’ll one of the first to go. That said, BE isn’t bad at all but it is fairly average shonen series and I like shows that go beyond the average and break as many tropes as they can get their hands on (and I knew this going in, I’ve read through the first major arc in the manga which is probably where this season will end). Rin is more genre-savvy than your average shonen protagonist (he’s even lampshaded what he’s SUPPOSED to do at a few points) and there is a good sized main cast (but not so big you can’t remember all of them), those of who have gotten character development in the manga are decent enough characters. The show looks good (A-1 is becoming a rather strong studio aren't they?), even if the ending sequence looks weird and the opening is a bit uneven, the closing song is really weird (well, from the Engrish in it, neither songs are translated) but the background music works. So, if you like shonen, watch this, it’s got a better than average plot and great visuals, it’s solid entertainment (and I have no idea why Aniplex is releasing this without a dub in the US, it would work pretty well with the other shows airing on Adult Swim right now).

The first few episodes were a bit slow and I almost dropped it but around episode 4 something changed for me and I got really interested in the characters and then episode 12 (the half-way point), whooooa. The show is surprisingly quotable (I’ve actually seen more memes based on audio clips from the show than images which is a first), quite a few of the characters have already gotten some character development and everyone is sure to get more in the later episodes and the plot here seems really solid. I’ve heard a lot of people say that this is one of the best visual novels out there (in terms of plots) and that the second half doesn’t disappoint and, after seeing episode 13 (which is firmly in the second half of the season), I’m hyped for the second half! Funimation picked up the license for this one just last weekend, although I’m betting it won’t get a release before the later half of 2012, so right now this one is firmly on my to-buy list!

Tiger and Bunny:
As I said in my spring review, I wasn't planning on watching this at all until I heard great reviews for it and this is one of my favorite shows of the spring season. I was expecting the show to be really episodic (criminal-of-the-week) but very early on it introduced a more central plotline (Bunny tracking down his parent’s killers) and the character development for Tiger and Bunny (more for Bunny because he needs it more) also showed up way earlier than I expected. Heck, half the heroes have had a focus episode already (it looks like the episode for this week will be another one as well) and hopefully everyone will keep appearing often and developing. The CGI isn’t as distracting as you would expect (unlike [C] the traditionally drawn characters are always traditionally drawn and the CGI stuff is always done in CGI, this really helps) and the music seems to work well. Sounds like this was a surprise hit for Sunrise (neeeever underestimate the buying power of the fujoshi!*) so here’s to hoping the plot for the second half is as solid as the first!

For those interested, I'll do my summer anime roundup the same way I've done the past two but, since only half the shows I'm interested in have aired, it's going to a bit. I should have the first post up late next week (yeah, it's going to be multiple posts again, like I said, 10 shows, that's just too many to put up at once @_@).

*Hell, there’s so much slash fanart that some of my friends were half-convinced it was a BL show, pretty funny thing to see first thing in the morning on your facebook

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