Top Winter 2015 Anime: Final Ratings

It was a good season of anime. I realize I’m closing the season on a pretty small selection of shows and that a number of those shows are leftovers from the Fall 2014 season, but even so…this was a good season of anime. I don’t actually know what more to say beyond that. It was good, I really enjoyed it and felt blessed to be watching what I was watching quite a lot, and I’m sad many of these shows are over. And that’s that. Here are the best anime of Winter 2015. Are you ready, Koharu-chan?

[Management: I’ve decided to rename the “Best Animation” category the “Best Visual Aesthetic” category. The idea here is to condense character designs, background art, and general visual appearance into a single category. I’m not really qualified at this point to discuss the actual technical merits of animation, but I can at least tell you what I thought looked good. Additionally, the caption awards have morphed into something a bit different than “the was the best action” show; rather, they’re now more along the lines of “this show had the best romance/action/etc.”]

Your Lie in April

Continue reading

Snapshot of a Human: Reflections on Death Parade

Could you be an arbiter?

“Where am I? Who am I?”

“You’re an arbiter, made to judge the souls of human beings. The game you will use? One known as life, capable of revealing the greatest darknesses and greatest glories of the human spirit.”

Allow me to suggest that we all possess, in varying degrees, a desire to be an arbiter of the people who surround us. That there is an inhuman, unsympathizing Decim within each of us who seeks to judge—fairly or not—on the basis of our unavoidably limited experiences with other individuals. Yet, fortunately, we all also possess the capacity to emulate Chiyuki and her desire to reach out and understand the humans who are at once laughably simple and impossibly complex.

Death Parade

Continue reading

Winter 2015, Week 11: Highlights of the Week

The week of no bad episodes (almost), with the only stragglers being Rolling Girls, which has really fallen off badly since the Kyoto arc, and Absolute Duo‘s disappointing finale. But that’s a small price to pay for the absurd level of excellence pretty much everything else on the schedule brought out. It was a very good week to be an anime fan.

Continue reading

Absolute Duo Review

Decently executed trashy light novel adaptations is a genre I feel the anime industry has unjustly overlooked. Sure, there’s not much money to be made there if the sales of Absolute Duo [8-Bit, 2015] are to be judged and sure, there doesn’t really seem to be much of an audience or much appreciation for the genre, but someone still needs to give credit where credit is due. And director Atsushi Nakayama (in his first full directorial outing) and series composer Takamitsu Kouno deserve a lot of credit for making Absolute Duo a much better show than it had the right to be. As an almost consistently entertaining production, Absolute Duo gets a 4/10 (Ongoing Rankings).

Absolute Duo Continue reading

Your Lie in April Review

1+1=2, but you don’t have much of an equation if the plus sign is missing and you certainly can’t get to a sum greater than the two addends that way. So it is with Your Lie in April [A-1 Pictures, 2014-2015], without question the most persistently frustrating, yet fascinating, show I have ever watched. Equally capable of presenting an etheral, emotional episode or an outright maddening one, KimiUso (an abbreviation for the show’s Japanese title, Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso) is a show of brilliant gems sadly lacking the links necessary to completely finish the equation. But, in the final review, those jewels are still worth something on their own, even if their settings can’t quite match their brilliance. So, my final verdict for Your Lie in April is a 7/10 (Ongoing Rankings). Your Lie in April Continue reading

Winter 2015, Week 10: Highlights of the Week

Only two weeks until the end of season review pile is upon me (or, for KimiUso, like…2 days)! I didn’t do any end of season reviews last season due to the whole Toradora! project, but I’m planning on doing a few this season. I’m still trying to decide on which shows I want to review, but I’m not certain yet. KanColle and Maria the Virgin Witch (yes, I’m planning on picking it back up) are probably both going to be completed by the end of the season, so let me know if you guys have any shows you’d really like me to cover!

Log Horizon 2 Continue reading