2016 has been a good year to be. One of my top 10 shows, Amanchu aired this year, we got more Aria, and I’ve given an 8 to at least one show every season, which is far better than usual for me. Fall doesn’t look quite as good as Summer, but it has plenty of great-looking shows, and I plan on starting nearly every non-sequel. I’ve narrowed down the list of shows I’m checking out to the ten I’m most anticipating.
1 – Yuri on Ice
This definitely appears to be the standout show of the season. The director, Sayo Yamamoto, has made two series, and both of them have been given high critical acclaim. It’s easy to see the potential just based on that, but the PVs are really what made this my most anticipated show. They look absolutely excellent, from the character designs to the animation. It’s not often you see ice skating animated at all, let alone of the quality seen in these PVs. Everyone who has any interest in high-quality anime and animation in general should at least take a look at this show.
2 – Sangatsu no Lion
I like SHAFT a lot. I also liked the few chapters of this that I read a lot. It’s been a while since I’ve seen a real slice-of-life/drama show from SHAFT, but I absolutely love Hidamari Sketch and am sure the studio’s style is capable of fitting this manga. Coming of age stories are also always quite enjoyable, and often fairly relatable, so that adds to my hopes as well. Not much else to say about this one, just looks like it’ll be a solid show which fits my tastes quite well. Those with an interest in slice-of-life, drama, or SHAFT shows should check this one out.
3 – Flip Flappers
I like magical girl series quite a bit, but they don’t stand out enough for me to generally put them this high on my pre-season list. What sets this apart is, again, the excellent PV. The staff doesn’t stand out, but the PV has some of the best animation I’ve seen in a TV anime outside of KyoAni. Couple this with relatively unique character designs and it looks great. Since it’s a genre I already have some affinity for, excellent animation could sell it to me on its own. It could also turn out terribly, but it should be worth watching just for the animation alone, at least for any sakuga fan.
4 – WWW.Working!!
I think Working!! is quite a funny show, so I’m sure that a psuedo-spinoff will be as well. Not much more to say, check this out if you liked Working!! as well. The only way this could let me down is if the dynamic between characters is worse than that in Working!!, but I have faith that won’t be the case.
5 – Stella no Mahou
CGDCT is one of my favorite genres, and those adapted from Manga Time Kirara tend to be better than those that aren’t. Having just finished New Game, which was the best CGDCT since K-On in my opinion, I don’t think Stella no Mahou will be as enjoyable to me as it would have been in Spring, but it looks to be a solid CGDCT show. These shows usually straddle the line between me completing them and dropping them, but I tend to like those I finish quite a bit so I have decently high hopes for this one. If it can nail the character dynamics and keep out any boring characters, it’s set.
6 – Hibike Euphonium S2
Unfortunately, I didn’t love Hibike as much as some others. I liked the band elements, but I was really drawn in by the more romantic elements, and the fact that it seems like it won’t actually go anywhere annoys me and puts me off the show. If it continues like that I’ll really be turned off. If it doesn’t bother you though, it should be excellent, and I still enjoy the show despite my enjoyment being hampered by the seeming baiting, so I’m sure I’ll like this season even if I complain about it.
7 – Shuumatsu no Izetta
This show doesn’t necessarily look good, but it does look fun. The mere idea of a witch girl riding on an anti-material rifle sounds so incredibly anime that I can’t resist being hype for it. When you add the key visual’s yuri undertones this could be a fun show. On the other hand, it could get gross and handle the Nazis in a very apologetic way, which would instantly turn me off of the show. Overall though I have some hopes for this, and it could be one the most fun shows next season.
8 – Occultic;Nine
This is an interesting one. From what I understand it’s based on a light novel from the Sci;Adv makers. That would be a great sign if Steins;Gate was all they’d made, but the other two Sci;Adv shows aren’t well respected at all, so my hopes are entirely based on a wish that this show turns out as well as Steins;Gate. A mix of Sci;Adv with more supernatural elements sounds cool, so hopefully they pull it off. I don’t know how it’ll go for me, but this has the potential to be really popular.
9 – Kiss Him, Not Me
This one just looks pretty funny. The idea of a fujoshi harem is just great, and the promise of yuri makes it even better. This is a show which could easily fall into a generic, shitty reverse harem, but if it uses its premise well, it could be one of the funniest comedies in quite a while. As long as this avoids the creepier and more fetishistic sides of fujoshi, it could be a great show.
10 – Gundam: IBO Season 2
IBO wasn’t the best Gundam series I’ve seen, but it was pretty fun, and I see room for improvement. Not much to say here either, watch it if you liked Season 1, don’t if you didn’t.
Very few of the shows I’m anticipating this coming season are guaranteed to be good, but quite a few look like they could be pretty enjoyable, so I’m hoping I’ll enjoy this season a fair a bit. With any luck I’ll find a nice crop of shows to round out my top 10 for the year. It’s been my favorite year since I joined the anime community so far, and I hope that it can finish off strong in Fall.