Friday, February 21, 2014

Sensory Overload: Anime Winter 2014

From a 20+ something anime titles I've been expecting to watch this season mine got narrowed down to not even a close fraction from the original list. It took me long enough to post this entry but I believe the one's I've decided to retain are truly good enough to keep.

1. Noragami (Bones)
My favorite series for the Winter season. I love the entire concept on Kami's, magic and spirits, which is an entirely different universe from my own background. Noragami is not afraid to go to dark places and still, it retains its humorous side without going corny. The animation is just superb; the character design, the scenery, the background, everything is perfect to a T and beautifully made. Yato is also my favorite character of this season (and possibly my front runner for favorite male character for the quarter roundup). 

2. Gin no Saji (A-1 Pictures)
I missed this show since its finale last year and this is one anime that I could just watch over and over again without bordering into sheer boredom. What can I say, it gives me unadulterated, pure slice of life bliss every single time. The characters, every one of them, feels like family to me already, even the new "annoying" one's introduced this season. I guess there will be more drama (and love life) for Hachiken this time around.

3. Space Dandy (Bones)
This is totally an unexpected choice for me. I was dead certain at first to avoid this show at all cost because it looks so outrageous and simply beyond my character. But hell yeah, the first episode didn't packed a lot of punch but the succeeding episodes - its back on a clean slate "reset" format - made me all hooked. And it helps a lot that my favorite seiyuu, Juunichi Suwabe, is the voice behind Dandy. I love them all, especially Meow, with his crazy and yet unaware antics.   

4. Hoozuki no Reitetsu (Wit Studio)
If there is a specific anime this season that would give you the 411 on Japanese-Buddhism then, this would be it. All their ramblings about hell (or at least the concept put into anime) can be heavy on one's ear and brain, especially if you lack any insight about any of their spiritual whatchamacallit. But everything about this series is so much fun as they poked around on divine punishments, sins and demons alike. 

5. Inari, Konkon, Koi Iroha (Production IMS)
A high school girl and her hopeless crush. The plot sounds cliché, but this series is just too cute and lovable to pass, and it doesn't hurt that it's about shrine's and Gods and all those Japanese-Buddhist-Shintoist culture, which I voraciously devour upon like a true-blooded Japanophile monster. 

6. Toaru Hikuushi e no Koiuta (TMS/3xCube)
Aviation oriented anime can never go wrong on my record, unless they botched the story big time. Romeo and Juliet love stories is a worn-out tale adapted on both the small and the big screen, but what makes Toaru special is its surprisingly smart execution, especially with the writing and the direction that keeps its viewers fasten tightly on their seats.

7. Wake Up, Girls! (Ordet, Tatsunoko Production)
I'm never a fan of idols, but Wake Up, Girls! is an interesting series nevertheless. It highlights the "make or break" drama of working behind the cookie-cutter industry of idol groups. The painstaking sacrifices and struggles that an aspiring performer must go through in order to succeed and reach the full potential of their dreams. There is nothing Moe about what they do or this show, despite the otherwise character designs it portrays and the cheeky songs that plays throughout the episodes. 

8. Hamatora The Animation (Naz Animation Studio)
Despite all the bad reps about this series from the blogosphere, the only thing I can find fault here is the poor animation, but put them aside, the mystery is damn interesting. I've decided to stay in tune because I know there's a lot of potential here. 

9. Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai! Ren (Kyoto Animation)
This is one of my guilty pleasures. I mean, a sequel is kind of too soon and unnecessary in my opinion. I keep on complaining how the character development from season one became useless because Rika went back (much worse) to her Chuunibyou ways, and yet in spite of those things I never fail to watch a single episode. Honestly, I like all the characters with the exception of our main girl here, Rika. She never fails to trigger my annoyance button each week, and I don't understand the whole point of her being Togashi's OTP because he can actually do so much better. 

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