Fall 2016 Week 2 Recap + Week 1

Seeing how many shows I’m watching this season(16, and it’ll be 17 if I pick up Keijo), I figured now was as good a time as any to start writing about shows weekly. Making dedicated posts is too much work though so I figure I’ll just do a weekly recap. Weeks start on Mondays by this schedule, so Week 2 goes up to October 16th. Series will be ordered based on my current ranking of them. No pictures this week as I hadn’t decided to do this yet, but they should be here from next week on.

Yuri on Ice – Episode 2

Yuri on Ice has been brilliant so far. The animation is good enough to justify the show on its own, but its more than just nice to look at. The characters so far are all charming enough to care about, even despite the lack of development so far. While the story beats aren’t particularly revolutionary or anything, they’re presented so well that they seem original in spite of how common they are. The first two episodes for this show have just been great and I’m eager to see where the characters’ relationships go from here on out.

Jojo Part 4 – Episode 29

Highway Star is probably my favorite fight in Parts 1-4, and I’m happy with how well David Pro pulled it off. While the animation wasn’t quite on the level it could have been — 3 cours of production does that to you — it was just a great example of how Part 4’s slice-of-life style can work well at creating villains who have realistic motives but are still assholes. Despite the small production troubles I’ve been loving this Part 4 adaptation, and I’m looking forward for David Pro to finish it off this season.

3-gatsu no Lion – Episode 2

I was worried about how Shaft would adapt this — they haven’t done a more down-to-earth show since Hidamari Sketch — but those concerns were totally misplaced. Masterful direction worked with great writing to create one of the best openings of the season. The visual representation of Rei’s depression was excellent, and the infusion of color into the sisters’ home did a great job of showing how much happier he is when with them. It’s not an iyashikei, but it has the same quiet, down-to-earth tone so common to the genre, and I’m hooked.

Flip Flappers – Episode 2

So far Flip Flappers isn’t very coherent. What it’s going for isn’t all that clear, so it’s hard to judge it based on that. What I can say is that it’s thoroughly enjoyable. The tonal difference between when Cocona is on her own and when she’s with Papika demonstrates what I like about it the most so far. On her own she seems bored and unfulfilled, but she lights up when Papika is with her, and the show follows suit. I like this not just for the gay subtext, but also just because I love stuff like this. Relationships that meaningfully improve both participants’ lives are something that I love. I’m a little worried by the somewhat “rapey” stuff with the robot, but as long as that doesn’t get worse I can ignore it.

Hibike Euphonium 2 – Episode 2

After rewatching the first season I realized that I like Hibike quite a bit, and this season just continues the trend. The first episode was like a movie, and probably had the best KumiRei moment in the whole show, even compare to the hilltop scene. The second episode on the other hand was much more understated, but did a good job at making this season’s main conflict feel like it’s affecting more people, which gives it a greater sense of urgency. Overall this is just a great show so far..

Shuumatsu no Izetta – Episode 3

I would call this at popcorn show, but I think that would be underselling the show’s quality. This is just a fun show, with good action and so far charming characters in a setting well built to portray what the show needs to. Episode 3 showed that this show is able to quickly move between war drama and spectacular magical action, and that’s great. The relationship between Fine and Izetta is great as well. Just a very fun show, though one that could implode later on. That said, episode 3 had some really dumb fanservice that I hope calms down later on.

Girlish Number – Episode 2

This show gets close to being too cynical for me to enjoy, but it fortunately manages to just hit the point where I can still enjoy it. That said this is a thoroughly mean-spirited show so far. Episode 2 showed it off the best — Chitose isn’t a nice person, and is snarky and dismissive even of those she’s friends with. This should make a fun dark comedy and drama, but it clearly isn’t a perfect representation of the industry and shouldn’t be take as such.

Fune wo Amu – Episode 1

Episode 1 of this looked good, and that’s important. For a character drama that relies mostly on dialogue, being visually interesting matters, and through some smart direction and good character animation this pulled it off. Since the topic itself — making a dictionary — isn’t all that interesting, it all comes down to the interpersonal drama, and so far it’s been pretty good.

WWW.Working!! – Episode 3

This show is Working!!. Despite having new characters, it feels just like the first Working!!. This isn’t bad, since I like Working!!, but there’s not much to say. I guess so far I like how much larger this cast is, and how all the characters are unique and interesting even with such a large cast, but overall it’s just a funny comedy.

Vivid Strike – Episode 3

I was worried at first, but I think it was good that Vivid Strike shed the Nanoha label. By refocusing towards two entirely new characters, the show can use the basic concepts in Nanoha and some of the characters while ignoring some of the mistakes made in past series. The tournament established in episode 3 makes it clear that the show will have a similar structure to Vivid, but that isn’t necessarily bad, and overall if this keeps up it’ll be a worthwhile show in the Nanoha franchise.

Drifters – Episode 2

This show so far has been really good at what it is, but I don’t value what it is that highly. It’s been a pretty good ultra-violent action comedy, but the first episode turned me off with its awkward historical jokes that don’t work on me at all. The second episode was better, since it focused entirely on the action which is quite well done. Hopefully the comedy is used less often and something interesting is done thematically, but the action itself is cool enough for me to continue the show.

Iron Blooded Orphans Season 2 – Episode 3

The action so far, especially in episode 3, was much better than most of that in the first season. Other than that, this isn’t particularly great. The idea of a split in Gjallahorn is interesting enough, and a look at what Tekkadan has actually done is surely important, but the rest of the new plot points don’t really intrigue me. It’s not bad, but it’s a mediocre Gundam series at best and these three episodes haven’t helped that.

Lostorage Incited Wixoss – Episode 2

I thought the first episode for this was pretty good. The new rules for Wixoss present some interesting directions for this to go, and it presented a somewhat relatable protagonist who I could easily sympathize with. Unfortunately the second episode let me down to some extent. It got too oppressively dark, and when that happens I have a hard time caring. Suzu’s story is still interesting, but episode 2 made Chinatsu’s too dark to care about.

Kiss Him, Not Me – Episode 2

Another fun comedy. Unfortunately because it can be quite mean-spirited towards the MC, I found the first episode quite off-putting. The second episode managed to redeem it despite terrible sound mixing, and the concept is funny enough to keep me interested. It seems like it could devolve to a generic reverse harem, but episode 2 was certainly a success.

Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku – Episode 3

Not as edgy as I expected, to be honest. On the flip side, not much about it is all that interesting so far. I watched this hoping for a train-wreck, so I’m kind of disappointing that it’s only mediocre. That said it’s just good enough for me to enjoy watching it, and episode 3’s reveal to the characters should allow the edginess to become more prominent, so things could get more fun quite soon.

Occultic;Nine – Episode 2

This is the train-wreck. Holy shit this show is bad. The girl’s boobs are ridiculous, the pacing is absurd, and worst of all, it has good animation. This show is a disappointment more than anything else. The character animation is great, but it’s wasted on an utter mess of a show. Little makes sense about it, but that isn’t my main issue. It just isn’t tonally consistent. There’s no way to tell if it’s supposed to be comedic or serious even in individual scenes. It’s jarring, and when you add that to the rest of the show’s absurd elements it’s just a mess.


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