NewAnimeThursday: 1 Year of Doing Stuff

Fireworks to celebrate?

So it’s been a year already…kind of, the actual anniversary of when I started NewAnimeThursday is the 22nd of July, but this is closer to 50,000 views, and I feel like doing it now. It’s quite an odd idea, really, an anniversary post. Do I recount stats? (I heard bitches like statistics…) Or maybe the readers want me to pander and say how I couldn’t have gotten this far without their support (which is totally true, btw :3). Do I recount favorite experiences from the past year or would it be better to elaborate on what I’m looking forward to?…I have no clue, but here goes…

As far as stats go, though I’m not as popular as many other blogs, NewAnimeThursday’s growth has been steady and has a rate of increase that has been fairly constant. It also matches a prediction I made a few months ago regarding breaking 50,000 views by the 1 year anniversary. Whether or not the growth continues is really up to you, the readers. But growth isn’t the only measure of success for me. Recently I had a glorious loss to Kritik in the Aniblog Tourney (I have no qualms about losing to a top 16 blog), the results of which surpassed my best expectations. On a related note, this is all I’m going to post about concerning the Tourney.

To be honest, I’m writing this in a state of semi-disillusionment. It may be from summer lethargy, or outside stressors from school, or maybe I’m just running myself into the ground again. But current situations are making episodic postings quite tedious and unappealing, so I’m conflicted. I don’t want to stop following anime series season-to-season, and if I could, I’d like to continue writing about them episode-by-episode. But current internet connections are nearly tripling the time it takes me to write compared to back when I first started and when I was at school (I miss school). It’s almost too much of a pain just to get the new episodes to watch them. So I’ll go ahead and say that I’m expecting to not be as prompt with posting in the Summer 2012 season, and I’ll probably only write final reviews for the Spring 2012 series that I already haven’t do so for yet like Gakkatsu, and only occasionally post about continuing series like Accel World.

So before I start to sound like I’m just desperate for attention (or something like that), I’ll say thanks to any one who cares enough to read, follow, or comment. Here’s to another year of awesome stuff that I’ll do…hoping to really get on stuff once I get back to school and away from my life-sucking family. Now I crack a 2 liter of Dr. Pepper in celebration, and kick back for some time off. If I rebound enough, maybe an editorial or two by the time I get back to school. Additional note, speed draws aren’t happening until I either fix my tablet or get a new one…thanks relatives who don’t know how to treat other people’s property. :3

Fall 2011 Final Review

Back for a final review of the Fall 2011 season. For simplicity sake, I’m dividing this post into “finished” and “continuing” series. Series that have reached a definitive end (even if just for now) and don’t have any rumor of possible continuation, are deemed “finished”, and series like Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon and Guilty Crown, which are most definitely going to be continued, are deemed “continuing”.

For “finished” series, this season I followed Shinryaku!? Ika Musume, Working’!!, Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai, Ben-to, and Tamayura~hitotose.  Shinryaku!?, Working’!!, and Tamayura are all continuations from previous seasons or OAVs, while Boku wa, Ben-to, and  are original premiers.  The more comedic series, Shinryaku!?, Boku wa, and Working’!!, offered a refreshing break in-between more action or character-driven series like Ben-to, and Tamayura.  But that’s not to say the comedies didn’t offer their own substance in way of character development or excitement.  In general, the series I would like to see more of, and think there’s a chance of a continuation are Boku wa Tomodachi ga SukunaiC³and Working’!! (I feel like there’s still room for fresh material to continue the story of the Wagnaria crew).  Ben-to and Tamayura~hitotose both reached logical, definite conclusions, and I’m satisfied with their endings. I’m almost apprehensive of asking for another season of Ben-to, as this may not live up the enjoyment of the first season (but I’m all for more Asebi, so I’d be willing to try it if it did get a second season).  Shinryaku! Ika Musume, while amusing to me, is really a hit-and-miss sort of comedy style, and it’s quite fortunate to have gotten this second season.  I’m not hopeful for a third season, but if the hit-and-miss hits enough people to generate good revenue, enough to justify a third season, more power to them.

(I’m not used to giving ratings, but I’ll see how this goes.) Overall, for “finished” series this Fall 2011 season, I’d give an 8.7 out of 10.  A lot of the series, as stated, are continuations from previous seasons or OAVs, so they bank on previous success.  But there was quite a good bit of excellent new material to give a nice blend of old favorites and fresh series to keep me thoroughly entertained.

 

On to the “continuing” series, Guilty Crown, Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon, and Gundam AGE.  Ultimately, the only two I’m eager to see continue are Guilty Crown and Kyoukai Senjou, as they are the only ones to truly not make me cringe 90% of the time.  Guilty Crown was poised to become the next Code Geass, but, as many other blogs will quickly remark, this just wasn’t the case. Ohma Shu is no Lelouch Lamperouge.  But I do admire the unique premise, drawing voids that take on form depending on the owner’s heart is very interesting and I’ve been surprised to the individuality and applications of the voids Shu has so far drawn.  While the main protagonist leaves much to be desired, the 11th episode, marking the halfway point of the series, shows him finally acting the part of the hero. My fingers are crossed that this will continue into the Winter 2012 season.  Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon also broke it’s pre-determined impressions, as many, including myself, spent much of the series wondering what was going on.  While normally this would be considered a minus for a series, Kyoukai Senjou pulls it off in such a fashion that makes me overlook the confusion and enjoy it more so now that everything just seems to be happening in a way that makes me happy to understand.  While this is a confusing idea to some (trust me, I’m still wrapping my head around it), I’m still looking forward to the second season, announced to air in 2012.  Finally, there’s Gundam AGE, my most disappointing series this season.  Not that there’s inherently anything wrong with it, but if you’ve seen other Gundam series such as Gundam 00, Gundam AGE seems to spit in the face of previous success. The character designs are very childish, as is the dialogue, and I’ve never found myself rooting for the bad guys because I can’t stand what they did to the Gundam design.  I’ve really only continued watching because, steadily, AGE is recovering ground inch-by-inch. Supposedly this series is going to span three generations, i.e. Flit’s son and grandchild eventually become the focus. I’m hoping for Flit to leave the cockpit soon, I honestly can’t stand the thought of someone as generally annoying as that child piloting (what is, in my opinion) one of the greatest machines ever imagined.

Rather disappointing “continuing” series, compared what I expected going into Fall 2011.  My rating is a 7.0 out of 10.  Passable because the tail-end of the season sees some remnants of what I hoped for going in.  For Guilty Crowns sake, Shu better man up or shut up, take a lesson from Dan the Man and use some “GUTS!”.   Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon needs to do nothing but continue the great plot movement of the last 4 or so episodes in the first season (I fear the first episode of the second season will be a recap of the first season, if anyone involved with this show is reading, please don’t do this, just jump right back into the story).  Gundam AGE…*sigh* just, stop ruining what I like about the Gundams. If Flit is going to lose, don’t let it be because of something so simple as type-disadvantage.  If Flit is going to whine, let someone else b**** slap him. And if the UE is an alien force, give them a good reason for attacking human colonies (may I suggest reading the Ender’s Game series? very good example of extraterrestrial misunderstanding).

Next season has less in store (for me, anyway) than Fall 2011. I plan on following Kill Me, Baby! and Another for sure. As well as continuing Guilty Crown and Gundam AGE.  There’s a high possibility that I’ll pick up others perhaps a few episodes in if I get good impressions and have the time.

Until next time,
- BeldenOtaku

Additional note, just finished Azusa Nakano’s Speed Draw :3, you can check them out here. Enjoy, and Happy New Year.

Working’!!: Farewell Poplar/Final Review

Hey minna,
back for a final dinner at Wagnaria, and the final episode of the second season of Working!! A comedy series I’ve very much enjoyed watching, and will be very much missed (it’s good that it has a very high re-watch quality, in my opinion).  While, for the most part, Working’!! stayed static when it came to major character development, except for a few key episodes, this final episode gives a send off (sort of) for Taneshima, who is surprised to learn she’s grown taller and can now reach the damage report sheet.

For once, it’s not just Takanashi who is despondent over Taneshima’s dwindling smallness, Sato-san also feels disheartened that he may soon no longer be able to make fun of her or mess with her hair.  The despair doubles and spreads throughout Wagnaria when Yamada finds out that Taneshima may consider quitting to focus on her upcoming entrance exams.

Everyone seems sad to think of their precious Popura leaving them, except for Maya Matsumoto (the “normal” high schooler, frequently seen waiting tables during cut scenes).  Maya suggests to Taneshima that she simply continue working until her grades do slip, quite ingenious, really.  Taneshima promises her co-workers to do her very best, and Takanashi and Sato figure out that she actually hasn’t grown, but simply got better at stretching and reaching up to the list.

Working’!!, including its first season, was a very fun watch, staying fairly consistant with the humor in the manga.  The characters were so very well done to fit and bounce off the personality of other characters, that I’d imagine once a premise was set, the story almost wrote itself.  Even the “normal” girl was anything but.  While this seems like a nice place to leave the series, I’m reminded that Inami has yet to punch Takanashi some more before he gets a clue, and that Yamada has yet to reunite with her supposed brother.  Here’s hoping for a third season, but if it isn’t to be, I’m satisfied with where the Wagnaria staff leaves off.

Until next time,
- BeldenOtaku

Working’!!: Daisy Dies

Hey minna,
back at my favorite family restaurant with a new episode of the Fall 2011 comedy series Working’!!  More character development that sets Working’!! apart from other comedy series and keeps me coming back for more (even though I still think Takanashi is a total jerk to Inami, even if they just paint him as clueless on the show).

Inami is making leaps and bounds overcoming her androphobia, setting a new record for most days without hitting a guy.  But Yamada challenges this, saying she’s been doing it by avoid guys, and she should try to train herself to better control her urge to punch dudes.  After Sato and Soma refuse to be Inami’s punching bag, Yamada searches for a tall, small-breasted (or “slender”, as Taneshima insisted) girl who could dress as a guy to help Inami. Unfortunately, the only girl in the restaurant who fit the bill…was Inami.  Yamada retrieves a waiter’s uniform and has Inami dress in it, look into the full length mirror, and realize all Inami sees is herself in pants. Nice try though, at least until Takanashi shows up to make it known that Inami is wearing his uniform….awkward….

Well, after Daisy took a hit, and was pronounced dead on the scene, Yamada set out to show Sato-san that she’s grown up too.  Until she gets locked out of the restaurant after closing, and gets caught crying for her mommy by Sato, who calls Taneshima to have Yamada stay at her house for the night.

Takanashi is still ever-clueless, but at least he didn’t do anything else to upset Inami, and has started texting her too. Maybe he’ll figure out soon enough.  I think the scene with him waiting over 2 hours to get a text from her shows that he really cares for her more so than other people, and sending a picture of a cat shows that Inami knows how to get Takanashi’s attention.

Until next time,
- BeldenOtaku