Actually, if it wasn’t for the Olympics pushing a few shows back a week this would be more aptly called the 3/4 season report.
Well, the anime apocalypse that this winter season was supposed to bring turned out not nearly as bad as people feared. The sequels are holding their weight and the seasonal surprise hits arrived on time, like they always do, and there’s plenty of assorted goodness spread around the other shows to keep the wolves at bay. Anime is not dying yet. The placards and rhetoric can be put away for a future season.
That said, my attention is starting to drift towards spring. Dangle the promise of a series directed by Masaaki Yuasa (Kaiba, Tatami Galaxy, Kick Heart) and you’d have to be an idiot not to get excited.
But let’s not get sidetracked.
Below the fold are my thoughts about each of the 21 anime series I watched that began airing this season. They are ranked from best to worst and grouped into six broad groups ranging from superior to poor. Before we start I wanted to quickly mention all the carryover series I’m watching and how they’re fairing: Hunter x Hunter > Kill La Kill > Nagi no Asukara > Space Brothers > Golden Time > Magi 2 > Tokyo Ravens > Samurai Flamenco. Oh Samurai Flamenco, how far you’ve fallen.
Okay, I’m seriously starting to get way to long with these entries; so, for today, I’m going to bend the rules a bit and try not to be so introspective. Bending the rules a bit because I’m going to cover two anime series and the moment is really just a pseudo-moment.
Step three for awesome anime – after creating memorable characters and giving them a worthy stage – is to use every part of the production process to bring-out/enhance the positive aspects of the anime and hide the negative aspects. Getting the right seiyuu can be the difference between a character being a success or failure. Inappropriate music can ruin the climax of a series and nothing can make a whole anime series fail as assuredly as poor animation quality. Conversely, in the right hands, a small budget can be overcome through creating the right animation style. Stellar OP/ED with it’s combination of music and animation can build excitement and anticipation for the anime and ensure viewers come back next week.
There’s other parts to an anime’s production – like script writing, cinematography, sound editing, etc. – that won’t gets awards here because I’m not knowledgeable enough in these areas to put any confidence in picking winners. Which is why I call this set of awards the Voice, Music, and Audio awards. I’m hoping next year I’ll be able to include a few more areas of the production to these awards.
Making a list of the new fall anime that I still have to write impressions for, I discovered that nine more needed covered – or slightly more than half – and I’d already taken the ones easy to talk about. I was on pace for the last impression posts written to be series review posts; clearly, something needed done, something drastic.
Like combining all 9 shows into one post and just write the most pertinent items for each show. Madness I know.
Subtitled: I need an excuse to talk about my favorite OPs of the new season and might as well try to wring something worthwhile out of it. Therefore, I’m creating a new poll (in the navigation bar to the right) to ask the readers of The Null Set the question – What is the best new OP of the fall 2010 season?
I was just reading on animenewsnetwork.com about supposed rumors about why there hasn’t been a Yotsuba anime series yet. You can read the entire thing over but what I wanted to comment on was Yotsuba’s creator, Kiyohiko Azuma, statement that a Yotsuba anime would be hard to do since it has “idiosyncratic storytelling”.
I can think of two different animation houses that have the ability to handle the anime adaptation. The first is Hal Film Maker. With Aria, Skectchbook and Somedays Dreamer’s Season 2 under their belts they’ve shown they can handle making the slow pacing of a slice-of-life show interesting. The other would be Brains Base. They’ve shown in Kamichu and Natsume’s Book of Friends that they can handle slice-of-life shows and infusing the characters with warmth so that you can’t help but love them. Either would make good picks.