Summer 2012 Anime

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Piero on Fri 3 Aug 2012 - 21:50

Iíd intended to post this earlier in the week so itís a little late, but I wanted to do something that summarized my general thoughts on the new series Iím watching this season a little better than my weekly updates have been. When I did this up earlier in the week I arranged the shows in order of how Iíd rank them (first to worst, essentially) thought it should be noted that these rankings could chance very quickly.

Rinne No Lagrange Season Two (4 episodes): Despite the art quality not being all that could be wished this is still a worthy successor to my favorite show of the Winter 2012 anime season. Whereas Season One introduced the characters and setting and established the crucial bond between Madoka, Lan, and Muginami, season two really gets into the story that was lurking in the background during much of season one. Because of this it gets its game on quite fast (as opposed to the first season which was a bit weak until it got into Muginamiís arc).


Tari Tari (5 episodes): I was worried about the direction of this series, but I liked it anyway due to its funny humour, gorgeous animation, and elements that made it seem fairly down to earth (sometimes its nice to have a relatively down to earth title to balance all the mecha and such). As of the latest episode I feel a bit more confident in the series though (even if Iím still not all that sure where itís going). Iím hoping the male cast members get more focus though. One of the things I liked about this show was that the main cast was relatively gender balanced (three girls and two guys) but so far the guys donít seem to be getting much of the focus, particularly the one who returned after twelve years in Austria (itís been suggested that the show may be deliberately holding back with him though).

Muv Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse (5 Episodes): Iíve got mixed feelings on this one. While it has its good points itís been a rather uneven production so far. Of particular concern is the portrayal of different nationalities (one of the Soviet girls seem kind of psycho, and while Iím not sure Tarisa conforms to a Japanese stereotype about Nepalese she was still pretty obnoxious in the first episode she appeared in). That being said the latest episode was a pretty strong one that made good use of the conflict between the male and female leads. I think Iím liking this one enough to follow along and see what happens.


Sword Art Online (4 Episodes): The first episode was fantastic, but the next two were kind of weak. Iím still waiting for the male lead to properly link up with some long term comrades, but at least the latest episode was a pretty good one. Although I could have done without the (fortunately mild) loli fanservice. Lets see some more of that girl we saw back in episode two (whom series artwork strongly suggests is the lead female for the series) shall we?

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Mon 6 Aug 2012 - 19:44

Space Battleship Yamato 2199 (Episodes 01-04)

They're rebooting the original TV series with modern animation?


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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Robert Frazer on Mon 6 Aug 2012 - 20:06

One show that I'm getting a lot of enjoyment out of this season has been Binbougami Ga. Yes, the fact that the principal is easy on the eyes helps, but while it's saucy I wouldn't call it crude, and beyond that it's an energetic show with light-hearted, zany fun and plenty of spirit.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Piero on Tue 7 Aug 2012 - 22:23

Kiskaloo wrote:Space Battleship Yamato 2199 (Episodes 01-04)

They're rebooting the original TV series with modern animation?


That's a TV series? For some reason I was under the impression it was a movie. Maybe I should check it out...

Anyway, this week's update:

Total Eclipse (Episode 6): Apparently Yuuya
doesn't understand tsundere -instead of being happy that he unlocked
Yui's dere side, he's pissed because he can't understand why she's
acting so differently from what he's used to. Laughing

Not overly keen on them doing a beach episode though, even if they had
an excuse and seem to have chosen a decent point in the series to do
it. At least there was some development in the interpersonal
relationships front. Having the weather turn bad and strand a group of
characters who were having some issues together isn't exactly super
original though.

Rinne no Lagrange (Episode 5):
So apparently Kokoro Connect isn't the only anime this season that involves a little body swapping. This should be fun. Smile

Also, nothing says shit is about to hit the fan quite like having all
three of your base's highly empathic giant mecha suddenly take control
of the automated launch systems and taking off without their absent pilots aboard. Laughing

Tari Tari (Episode 6):
Apparently Wakana's dad is actually a pretty cool guy. Who would've thought?

Overall a nice follow up to last episode's drama. Now that Wakana seems
to be making some progress with her issues regarding her mother's death
perhaps we can see Wein get some focus? Well, it looks like the next
episode is going to be for one of the other girls, but one can hope for
the future, right?

Sword Art Online (Episode 5):
Well we did get more of Asuna.
Unfortunately this show still has a tendency to make big leaps in its
timeline. Not too bad an episode overall though.

Overall I pretty much consider Lagrange and Tari Tari pretty good shows
while Total Eclipse and Sword Art Online are more "I'll enjoy what they
do well and tolerate what they don't" shows.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Tue 7 Aug 2012 - 22:32

Piero wrote:That's a TV series? For some reason I was under the impression it was a movie. Maybe I should check it out...

The movies are the episodes combined (kind of like what they did with Macross II and Macross Plus). The first movie was Episodes 01 and 02. The next movies will be sets of four episodes.

I'm a big Yamato fan, so I find the new show to be awesome thanks to both the new animation and the slightly updated story. Honestly, I would have watched all 26 episodes back to back if they'd been released I was so impressed. Smile

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Wed 8 Aug 2012 - 15:06

Space Battleship Yamato 2199 (Episodes 05-06)
Yutaka Izubuchi, Chief Director of the series and a former staffer on previous Yamato projects, evidently has been watching Ron Moore's Battlestar Galactica and it really shows. The new characters they have added are also really good. The Blu-rays of the movies include English subtitles. They're $100 each, but I am so tempted...

Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita
It's the silliness that makes this show so much fun to watch. That and Watashi's attempts to keep a straight face through it all.

Natsuyuki Rendevous
It's nice to have an adult-oriented (as opposed to adult-themed) anime drama. Liking this very much.

Yuru Yuri♪♪
Still love it for Kyōko Toshinō, but the other characters are starting to grow on me, as well.

Kokoro Connect
I like that they look to be trying to make a real drama out of this show.


Piero wrote:Total Eclipse (Episode 6): Not overly keen on them doing a beach episode though, even if they had an excuse and seem to have chosen a decent point in the series to do it.

Episode 5 or 6 seems to be the required "fan service" episode (taking place at either a beach or a bathhouse), so this show is tracking to norm. Personally, I gave it six episodes, but I dislike it for a number of reasons so I am truly dropping it, now.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Piero on Thu 9 Aug 2012 - 2:16

Like many other shows there are things I like about it and things I dislike about it. I'm enjoying the parts I like (certain characters for instance) enough to put up with the ones I don't. Besides, I want to see how certain things get handled in the long run.

It also seems that there may have been a fair bit that was lost in translation from the series source material. People's impressions of the series might have been different if the anime had stuck closer to it. Though then again I'm also of the opinion that trying to stick to close to the source material can be detrimental to a series.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Thu 9 Aug 2012 - 9:37

Like AKB0048, I'll tune in for the final episode to see how it ended.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Piero on Sun 12 Aug 2012 - 0:46

I'm not sure I see a lot of point in that. I'm not really trying to get you to watch it further, I was explaining my own reasoning for sticking with it. I consider Total Eclipse a second tier show among the ones I'm watching due to its various issues, and I don't really expect that to change. Granted it could still surprise me -I wasn't expecting Tari Tari to come through the way it did in its last two episodes, and I certainly wasn't expecting a lot of Rinne no Lagrange early in its first season. But TE is going to need to make a pretty good impression on me in the coming episodes if it wants to overcome my impression of it as a mixed bag kind of show.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Sun 12 Aug 2012 - 10:53

Piero wrote:I'm not sure I see a lot of point in that.

Consider it morbid curiosity to see if the show became more than what I consider a collection of character tropes that uses fan service to cover the lack of story. Smile

I have re-started Tari Tari and the show has enough new depth to stay with it, though I find Kokoro Connect to be more interesting.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Piero on Sun 12 Aug 2012 - 13:37

I tried up to Episode Five of Kokoro Connect after seeing some of the fourth episode when my brother played it on his laptop during a car trip. I think I still prefer Tari Tari though. I'm not keen on some of the things Kokoro Connect resorted to in order to generate drama, particularly some of the stuff it did in the fifth episode.

As for Total Eclipse, it's hard to say how it'll turn out. Alternative (the visual novel that a lot of the franchise's reputation is built on) is also pretty tropey but once it gets going it has some segments that are pretty impressive (I can actually kind of understand why some people consider it the best visual novel ever, even if I felt like I was spending waaaay too much time clicking through line after line of text). On the other hand Total Eclipse is a side story to Alternative, not Alternative itself. Plus it's an adaptation, so even if the source material for the coming episodes is great that doesn't mean the episodes themselves will be.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Mon 13 Aug 2012 - 18:30

Piero wrote:I tried up to Episode Five of Kokoro Connect after seeing some of the fourth episode when my brother played it on his laptop during a car trip. I think I still prefer Tari Tari though. I'm not keen on some of the things Kokoro Connect resorted to in order to generate drama, particularly some of the stuff it did in the fifth episode.

Tari Tari just seems to be the standard "slice of life school drama" of which I have seen so many of the past five years. In no small part, that is because I like these kinds of shows, but having seen so many, the genre has started to become routine and boring to me when it tracks to formula, as Tari Tari seems to have done with it's first half (though Episode 07 might be the start of a change). So on the one hand, it's a genre I like, but on the other hand, it's not standing out so I do not feel an urge to watch it right away when the fan subs come out. Sawa Okita's interest in Yabusame has made me think about a new hobby/sport for Kara.

Kokoro Connect at least has something different - well, two things different with the new arc started with Episode 06 - so even if I don't find it exceptional, I also don't find it routine or boring. Smile And yes, the show would have been better if it had turned out the way it appeared it was going to from a story/drama standpoint, but then I'd also have been really annoyed. On the plus side for me, the events of Episode 05 does appear to have some consequences for Taichi and Iori's relationship per Episode 06. As such, I do want to watch it as soon as the fan subs become available.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Piero on Mon 13 Aug 2012 - 23:31

One of the things I really like about Tari Tari is that it's quite entertaining but also seems quite natural/down to earth in terms of its setting, humour, and characters. While I like a lot of shows with more fantastic or sci-fi settings its nice to have a show with a very natural/down to earth feel for balance Tari Tari provides that for me.

I do have to admit it's not generally the first show I watch each Sunday though. (Scheduling plays a role there too, but even if it didn't I probably wouldn't generally be watching it first.)

I'm not sure quite what you're thinking put me off Kokoro Connect, but one of the big things was having a noncorpeal entity basically go "you people aren't making this body swapping interesting enough for me, so I'm going to take control of this girl's body and make her throw herself off a bridge to create drama." I can be a sucker for drama but that wasn't my type.

Also the main guy seems kind of like one of those generic nice guy harem show leads, though I suppose one could argue he at least sort of got called on it (that one girl calling him "selfless freak" before going dere for him).

So I'm not keen on giving KC another try at this point. Yamato 2199 sounds like something I might want to try out though.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Fri 31 Aug 2012 - 17:47

Shinryaku!! Ika Musume OVA
It's no secret I love this show, so an OAV extra episode is 100% bonus.

Dantalian no Shoka OVA
My favorite tsun tsun loli of 2011 is back. Smile

Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita [Episodes 05-09]
I thought they were going to "Endless Eight" me last episode, but this week's was a hoot. The faerie's outlook on things is comic gold. Watashi is probably my favorite anime lead of the season.

Natsuyuki Rendezvous [Episodes 05-09]
A pleasure to watch. Hopefully we will see more anime aimed at adult audiences.

Joshiraku [Episodes 05-07]
Still downloading it, but I only watch the part where they're out in the real world because it's usually bonkers and they tend to have cool outfits.

Kokoro Connect [Episodes 05-09]
Still a fan.

Tari Tari [Episodes 07-09]
Remains entertaining enough to stick with.

YuruYuri♪♪ [Episodes 05-09]
Guaranteed to make you snort milk out your nose.


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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by theprodigalson on Sat 1 Sep 2012 - 4:32

Just to throw in my 10 cents: I am loving Binbougami-ga. Call me silly, but the steady stream of other anime references keeps me laughing. I look forward to it very much every week.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Sat 1 Sep 2012 - 9:20

theprodigalson wrote:Just to throw in my 10 cents: I am loving Binbougami-ga. Call me silly, but the steady stream of other anime references keeps me laughing. I look forward to it very much every week.

I've seen a lot of anime call-backs in shows this season. Elena Peoples from Eureka Seven AO often draws Kyubey on her helmet and on notes. The Manga Lab folks in Hyōka dress up as video game, anime and Vocaloid characters during the Kanyafest arc and for the Comiket Episode in YuruYuri♪♪ they had a slew of anime characters from recent series in the background (as cosplayers).

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by theprodigalson on Sat 1 Sep 2012 - 10:46

Perhaps I should have given more shows a chance this season! I love that kind of stuff.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Piero on Sat 1 Sep 2012 - 12:29

It's probably a bit late in the week to be posting thoughts on episodes considering that new releases of many of the shows I watch will be out tommorrow (heck, today in the case of Sword Art Online), but here goes...

I thought the short story based episodes that have made up the bulk of Sword Art Online thus far were kind of weak. However I'm starting to agree with some other viewers that they served a purpose. Those episodes helped introduce many elements of the show's world before they showed up in the main story, and thus made their presence there seem more natural. Granted the original novel had to introduce many things on its own, but there are things you can do in a novel that can be difficult to do in an anime.

The other adaptation I'm watching, Total Eclipse, is improving but still suffers from some issues with regards to production values and heavy handness. There's a theory that the source material was originally intended to be short series to help sell Muv Luv mecha models, but ended up being turned into a longer one due to unexpected popularity. According to this theory the source material for the beach episodes was basically thrown in to keep the story going while the writers figured out where to go next. If this is the case, perhaps the adaptation should have cut some of that material, as a good adaptation should know when to deviate from its source material.

On the originals front, Tari Tari has turned into a really excellent show. It's too bad it didn't have such a strong showing from parents and Wien earlier in its run, but better they put in a strong showing late then not at all right? (Though it might be nice if Badminton-dude had a stronger role -then I could compliment the show for utilizing the entirety of its male main cast well, not just Wien.)

Rinne no Lagrange S2 has been a bit weak since around the end of Episode Six. I think the latest episodes have served a purpose, even the seemingly rather fillerish episode 8, but this is Rinne no Lagrange -I want something like Season One Episode Nine, a slower, less action oriented episode that not only served a purpose in the larger picture but was very entertaining as well. Episodes seven and eight of this season aren't on the same level. At least the series should pick up again soon since it's getting near the end of its run.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Sun 9 Sep 2012 - 15:42

Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita [Episodes 10-11]
Nice flashback episodes.

Tari Tari [Episodes 10-11]
I LOL'D at Episode 10 here, as well. Overall, my favorite of the series, though the purse snatching bit was unnecessary, IMO. The show looks to be ending strong.

Kokoro Connect [Episode 10]
This episode was also one of the better ones for this show.

YuruYuri♪♪ [Episodes 10-11]
I always LOL with this show and these episodes were no different.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Sun 16 Sep 2012 - 16:28

Jinrui wa Suitaishimashita - B+
"its origin and purpose still a total mystery"

Natsuyuki Rendezvous - B
Really liked this show due to it being aimed for an adult audience.

YuruYuri♪♪ - A-
Like the original, the sequel is ridiculous, but that is why I find it so enjoyable.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Sun 23 Sep 2012 - 21:43

Kokoro Connect - B+

Solid effort.

Tari Tari - B-

Didn't break any new ground for me, but still entertaining enough.


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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Piero on Mon 24 Sep 2012 - 23:48

This post is kind of doing double duty here and on another forum....

Iíve still got to check out Space Battleship Yamato 2199 (did that start airing this season or was it a previous one?) and Jinrui wa Suitai Shimishita but hereís some thoughts on the four new series I chose to follow this season.

Muv Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse:
This is a series where Iíve often had to take the bad along with the good, but the last few episodes have been pretty strong. Iím really liking the main characters, particularly Yui. As painful as that beach arc was in some respects the shift in character dynamics it caused has really helped the show. The fact that the current arc has been largely serious probably hasnít hurt either.

Rinne No Lagrange Season Two: The original Rinne No Lagrange surprised me. I didnít expect much of it from the first few episodes, but it soon turned into some special with its mixture of mecha, parody, slice of life comedy and surprisingly potent drama. Following on what season one accomplished the second season came out of the starting gate strong and kept going. Which makes the unsatisfactory ending to the series rather disappointing. It feels like this series had potential that it didnít live up to in the end. At one time it seemed like a prime contender for my favorite show of the year, nowÖ well, itís not looking like such a strong contender. That being said I still really want to see a subbed version of the OVA thatís supposed to bridge the two seasons.

Sword Art Online: This was pretty so-so for quite a while after itís first episode, and to some degree I think it still suffers somewhat from being an adaptation. While I think there were some good choices made in the adaptation process after reading translations of some of the original stories I also feel that quite a bit got lost in translation. Still I really dig the KiritoXAsuna pairing. Theyíre awesome together.

Tari Tari:
At the moment this is one of my top contenders for best show of the year. Sure, it took a while to show some of its strengths Ėin particular it didnít really start properly utilizing the male members of its main cast until quite late in the game- but overall it was a really nice series. Of particular note is that despite focusing on a group of teenagers it didnít neglect to utilize the adults in its cast. And it was highly entertaining to. Overall it was a very nice little reasonably down to earth drama.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Alfisti on Tue 25 Sep 2012 - 6:40

Piero wrote:Iíve still got to check out Space Battleship Yamato 2199 (did that start airing this season or was it a previous one?)...
No idea, but it's well worth a look. I've loved it so far; shiny new animation but they've still managed to retain that bit of old-school charm that more recent series have somehow lacked. Plus they've kept a funk action soundtrack and the pre-Star Wars starship designs and forms of combat. I was a huge fan of the Terran Trade Authority books as a kid (and still am to an extent), and so personally think that's brilliant.

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Tue 25 Sep 2012 - 9:44

Yamato 2199 is first being shown in theaters and then released on Blu-ray one month later. Once the show is complete, it will evidently then be broadcast on Japanese television in 2013.

Space Battleship Yamato 2199 (with the first two episodes) screened in April (with Episode 01 also being broadcast on TV as a special).

Space Battleship Yamato 2199 Chapter 2: Taiyōken no Shitō (with episodes 3-6) was screened in late June.

Space Battleship Yamato 2199 Chapter 3: Hateshinaki Kōkai (episodes 7-10) is to be screened in early October. The BRD is scheduled for release on 22 November, so once I finish my Turkey Day Marathon of MST3K, I will hopefully be able to watch the next four episodes. Smile

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Piero on Sun 25 Nov 2012 - 23:29

Muv Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse: To heavily paraphrase (or perhaps butcher) a quote by Roger Ebert "The problem with trying to form an opinion on Total Eclipse is that the bad parts are so bad and the good parts are so good." If you ever wanted to see a show go straight from a purile, otaku pandering fan service episode to a bloody and intense finale story arc with shades of Die Hard with only a recap episode/info special between them, this is the show to watch.

On a related note despite some of her character flaws early on Yui has been developing into a rather fine main heroine. It's no surprise that even one of the bridge bunnies wants to marry her. (Well okay, it actually was a surprise, and part of that otaku pandering fan service episode I mentioned to boot, but I was rather amused by that bit.)

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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

Post by Kiskaloo on Wed 19 Dec 2012 - 14:49

Koi to Senkyo to Chocolate - B

The first five minutes of this anime turned me off, so I stopped it and moved on. However, the OP is seriously great so I listen to it quite a bit. One of the things that annoyed me about the show was the "censor lights" so now that the unedited Blu-rays are fansubbed, I thought I'd give it a second chance.

And I have to say that, in the end, I ended up liking it. They got all the fan service out of the way in the first half of the first episode. Yes, there are some groaner moments in terms of dialogue, but even when they could go to the fan service well, they chose not to. Guh?

The story ended up being interesting and the show was really tightly-paced. Each episode pretty much felt like it was done in 10 minutes instead of 25.

Go figure. Razz

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Kiskaloo
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Re: Summer 2012 Anime

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