The summer anime season brought out too many shows to watch. Frankly I couldn’t keep up with it all and I doubt you could either (sadly, fall’s lineup looks more intense!). Because I couldn’t keep up you may have noticed that I didn’t post a single damn review for shows. I know, I know… what a dick move. Anyway, below you’ll find my list of shows that stood out and were worth watching in my opinion.
Hands down the best anime I’ve seen in a while. When you put aside how perverted this series is, you’ll actually find a well-plotted story that’s pretty incredible. It covers all the prison tropes and all the high-school tropes at the same time. Even better is the schemes to escape the prison and the battle between the prisoners and their jailors the Underground Student Counsel.
The comedy is also very intelligent. Sure there’s easy jokes like sex and such, but the interaction with the Principal and his daughter was always amazing and subtle. Not so much for when he would get busted for being a pig, but for how he would learn from the experience and improve for the next battle.
I doubt I’m alone when I say that Hana’s story was the most interesting and strangest to watch unfold. Especially the last two episodes which are just nuts and left me wondering how the hell this wasn’t censored to the point of being unwatchable.
The artwork was my favorite of the season. Mostly because it walks the line of what you’d expect from an anime, ie, being gorgeous to look at and all the women are beautiful, to being incredibly ugly. There are so many times when there’s a close up on someone that is just painfully gross or awkward, but it becomes one of the funniest things about the series.
Overall, this was the show that made me want to watch more the minute I was done with an episode. I couldn’t get enough and I hope that a follow up isn’t far behind. In the meantime, I’ll be picking up the manga.
I almost didn’t watch this one because of the name. That would have been a mistake. The premise is that teens have super powers. The catch is that they’re really incomplete powers like teleporting, but not being able to control the landing and getting hurt in the process. The show starts off simple, but then every few episodes destroys the status quo.
It’s amazing that way. After a character’s death the main character goes off the deep end and it’s just fucking great. Once he’s pulled back from the edge though and you think we’re getting the story back on track… bam, it happens again. These shocking moments work because until they hit the series feels like a rom-com. Afterwards, it feels like a drama with lighthearted moments.
The artwork is killer. It’s some of the best of the season in my opinion. Very detailed, but also colored wonderfully. There’s clearly a big budget here and they used it to create a series and world that looks wonderful. And when I say “world” they really travel the entire world.
Lastly I will tell you it’s called Charlotte because of a comet. I had to watch ten episodes to learn that and each week I just wondered why the hell it was called Charlotte when no one had that name. It’s a solid show that offers a lot of surprises and a new look at teens with powers. Think of it as a flawed X-Men.
I’m fairly certain that Gate will run into the fall season, but this series has been a treat. Sure it has harem elements, but the concept it what sets this story apart. Japan is invaded by another realm that is more in line with our fictional medieval fantasy literature. Obviously once the Defense Force is organized they make quick work of the invaders, but now Japan is left with the problem of what to do with the portal to another world.
There’s politics involved, military protocol and basically a lot of things that given the situation would really happen if it was the real world. The main character is a lovable oaf and yet brave, caring and a natural leader. He saves the show and though he has a very generic harem of supporting characters, the story never falls into the trap of dealing with him picking a girl. The world and story are just bigger than that.
The animation is also very well done. There’s a ton of detail and the animation team had to illustrate both modern Japan and a medieval fantasy world. The battles in particular are very detailed and realistic looking.
If you’re looking for a story that’s different and really holds a lot of real world views, then you’ll want to check this one out.
A Boring World Where the Concept of a Dirty Joke Doesn’t Exist
That’s a super long and annoying title. I liked this show, but I didn’t love it. There were some great moments, but the final third of the show really fell flat for me. The big baddie of the series could have easily been defeated had the main characters just communicated better and not rushed into everything. The title didn’t match up. A dirty joke to me is more than just saying Penis or Dingleberries, but the show would have you believe that those words and words like them are dirty jokes.
The concept was funny though and I’m again amazed that so much of this was able to air the way it was. In the story Japan has had all perversion eliminated from it to the point that young girls and boys have no idea when they’re looking at the others genitalia. SOX is a group that is out to inform the public of sex and basically pornography at the same time.
The best part of this story was Anna. She’s insane, but her “love nectar” scenes were magical. Also I loved that she basically ends up having all the same neuroses as all the other perverts, but somehow she’s not a pervert because she only cares about one guy and the preservation of innocence.
This was a decent show. I had fun with it for the most part, but it was pretty heavily censored. Unlike the other shows, they chose to make the censoring “fun” and instead it just became really annoying and bothersome. If you’re looking for some real pervert shit, this is for you.
After hearing some great stuff about the Gangsta manga, I was really looking forward to this series. The world and concept are pretty interesting. There’s a group of people with enhanced abilities that are known as “Dog-Tags” because their classified by strength and speed. They’re treated like third-class citizens and their existence has brought special rules for the city. There’s a lot more, but I feel like I could spend way too much time explaining this and still not do it justice.
Our two main characters are Handymen and basically do odd jobs for the city. One of them is a gigolo and the other is a Dog-Tag. They have a long history with each other and during the first episode they save a hooker and take her in to stay with them. She’s our window into this world and our character’s lives.
The pacing isn’t great. It takes a lot of episodes to learn all about the world. Thankfully the story also builds up a coming conflict at the same time, but that too felt slow building as well. Another slow aspect, the reveal of our main character’s backstory. We learn some, but you kind of want the story to give you the cliff notes already so you know.
The animation is good. The action could be better and overall I liked the character designs. It’s an interesting world populated by interesting characters, but I wish it wouldn’t sit around so much. It did have my favorite opening which is saying something since I hate almost every anime opening and closing.
My Wife is the Student Council President!
Another series with a title that’s way too long. This was the season for softcore hentai shows apparently. I have to wonder how they got away with so much though. My Wife… is actually a seven-minute show. Usually I don’t bother with these shows, but I found the pacing and the way the story was layered to be pretty good. It’s actually the perfect high school show because it kind of goes through a lot of what high school relationships are about, but obviously cranks them up a bit.
The animation was solid for how short the episodes were. If anything its worth checking out for the main character and just how difficult his life gets by having his “wife” live with him.
Jitsuwata, The Truth is I Am
There’s always going to be at least one harem comedy per a season. It’s been a while since I saw a truly great one, but Jitsuwata is the one I enjoyed this season. Basically there’s a student in high school who can’t hide his emotions or the truth from anyone. One day he discovers that the girl he has a crush on is a vampire, but by discovering her secret she’s forced to leave school. He promises not to let her secret be discovered so she can stay. Along the way he learns other girl’s secrets and finds out that his school is strange as hell.
The story is all a bit typical. There’s a few curves, including a major one at the end, but then it gets back on track to the expect ending which hasn’t aired as of writing this. This is one of those Tenchi Muyo type shows though in which the main character will never actually pick a character because for some damn reason creators don’t want to piss off part of the fan base that may be rooting for a different girl.
Anyway, it’s a fun story, not a great one. The animation itself is pretty good and falls in line with what you’d except from the high school harem genre including an amusement park and swimming scene.
The Instructor of Aerial Combat Wizard Candidates
What the hell is with these long ass titles? This is another kinda sorta harem story, but there’s a lot more drama. I almost didn’t watch it, but once I burned through a few episodes I became interested in seeing how the main character was going to out clever everyone else. Otherwise the characters are generic and lack any depth.
I also didn’t see this one becoming a harem style show since there’s a slight age gap between the one male character and the female characters, but I guess that was their way of playing off the teacher/student romance angle without it being too gross. None of the girls have much of a reason to like the dude other than the fact that he gives them the time of day and pays attention to them, but hey… I guess that is enough. At times, he’s a bit too smart, but sometimes that’s enough to hold my interest. Also I liked the dystopian future it created even if I didn’t understand why magic users were forgotten by the rest of the world if they died. It’s an average series at best and really just something to fill the time or just a guilty pleasure. If high schoolers with magic weapons fighting space beetles sounds interesting, then check it out. I needed this first season to deliver a bit more on the background of the world and so I doubt I’ll check out the second season… if it even manages to get one.