Fall 2021 Anime Season
September 23, 2021 3:47 PM - Subscribe

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posted by ardgedee (11 comments total)
Isekai update: "Saihate no Paladin" is one I've been looking forward to; the MC is more or less destined to save the world but it lacks (or subverts) the usual isekai tropes without winking to the audience about it -- it's a low-key and serious story focusing on the MC's spiritual journey. "Isekai Shokudou 2 / Restaurant to Another World" is the second season of a pretty threadbare but still engaging story based in a restaurant (the one that's not Isekai Izekaya) that's a portal to another world.

Mushoku Tensei's second season, and this season should be spending less time on the main character's sexual hangups, until some time late in the arc when his sexual hangups are the only topic. Take that however you will. "Sekai Saikou no Ansatsusha, Isekai Kizoku ni Tensei suru" is about an assassin who gets isekai'd with a mission to save the world. The manga adaptation of the LN is fairly good, but while the MC is basically a super spy, he lacks roguish charm, whether a'la James Bond or Lupin. "Shuumatsu no Harem" is your standard "traveled through time and now they want me to have a harem and I don't want to" thing where the only interesting question is whether it'll be as explicit as the manga. "Shinka no Mi: Shiranai Uchi ni Kachigumi Jinsei" is pretty much all the isekai cliches, played for laughs without being particularly clever.

Considerably fewer isekai than the summer season, and maybe for the better because the summer season's anime were mostly not that good. Even many of the ones that should have been good, like Bakarina, felt at best like they were treading water with nowhere to go.
posted by ardgedee at 4:09 PM on September 23, 2021

One non-isekai that I'm nervously looking forward to: "Shin no Nakama ja Nai to Yuusha no Party wo Oidasareta node, Henkyou de Slow Life suru Koto ni Shimashita" -- a member of the hero's party (which is destined to save the world, natch) is fired and he decides to take an early retirement in a frontier town. The story focuses on his getting to know the people in town and finding his place there, punctuated with occasional adventures. The right studio can make this a fun slice of life tale. The wrong studio can turn it into endless tiresome fan service. So I'll be gritting my teeth over this one.
posted by ardgedee at 4:15 PM on September 23, 2021

I'm happy to see MyAnimeList is now including Chinese donghua offerings in their listings.

Wondering how much Lie Huo Jiao Chou will have been altered from the source material to get past Chinese censors. Or maybe reincarnation is forbidden only in live action adaptations.
posted by needled at 8:57 AM on September 24, 2021 [1 favorite]

This season, for me, is all about sequels and continuations. There are so many, both good and bad-but-I-like-it-anyway, that it's really crowding out the newer originals. I've got: YuYuYu 3 (I love it, but I have no idea how they keep the story going), the second half of Eighty-Six, Mushoku Tensei, and Kimetsu no Yaiba. I was going to watch Date A Live IV, but they took it off the schedule, for "various reasons". ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

For new stuff, Saihate no Paladin looks pretty fresh. And, I'm not sure what to think about Ousama Ranking, but I'll give it a try. It's really hard to make a TV show with a deaf-mute as its main character. There's a near-infinite number of ways to botch the treatment. I'm going to try Shin no Nakama as well.
posted by Citrus at 7:59 PM on September 27, 2021

Hey everybody! Nice to see you all, I'm not sure how this anime discussion stuff works.... am I doing it right? LOL

I think on myanimelist people can be friends and share lists and such? If anyone wants to add I'm here.
posted by xarnop at 7:34 PM on September 30, 2021 [1 favorite]

"I'm happy to see MyAnimeList is now including Chinese donghua offerings in their listings" Me too I loved Mo Dao Zu shi, and I just found out the 3rd season finally came out AAAAH!
posted by xarnop at 7:35 PM on September 30, 2021

Anyone interested in High Guardian Spice, now that it's finally out?
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 4:44 PM on October 27, 2021

Not watching a lot of anime this year, but Heike Monogatari is a definite highlight. The art is gorgeous and the story is an imaginative distillation of the original tale (I'm up to episode 5). If it manages to keep its tight pacing and excellent characterization, it's a classic in the making (imho).
posted by bulgroz at 11:37 PM on October 27, 2021

"Heike Monogatari" is on our watch list but on any given evening it feels like too heavy a story to take on. The first episode was amazing, though.

"The Faraway Paladin" is turning out pretty well. I can't help but suspect it owes a lot to Bilibili being one of the coproducers -- funding anything fanservicey will amount to throwing their money away, in terms of distribution within China. I'm happy that they're remaining true to the spirit of the story so far.

"The Ranking of Kings" looks like a fluffy fairy tale but it's surprisingly heavy, full of moral ambiguity, bullying, parents being killed in front of their children, and so on. It's good but... wow.

"Muteking" is extremely bright, loud, heavily stylized, and weird. But also not particularly challenging. That and "Restaurant to Another World", "World's Finest Assassin" and "The Vampire Dies in No Time" round out the season's "turn on TV, shut off brane" weekly viewing cycle.
posted by ardgedee at 12:29 PM on October 28, 2021

Following two donghua, both of them adaptations of Chinese author Priest's novels:
  • Can Ci Pin (The Defective): not sure if it will be a full adaptation, I see online it's supposed to be 30 episodes, and so far at episode 15 we're not yet very far into the story. it's 3D computer animation, and the mecha and effects involving Zhanlu the AI are quite good. But the main human characters have such thin and elongated bodies they look like they're assembled out of pipe cleaners, and it's downright distracting. The story itself is a space opera involving different factions battling each other with many secrets to be revealed by our main characters, Lin Jinheng and Lu Bixing.
  • Lie Huo Jiao Chou (Drowning Sorrows in Raging Fire): this is set in modern times in an alternate history China where mythical creatures did actually exist and their descendants now mingle with regular humans. 2D computer animation and characters are not quite as exaggeratedly elongated as in Can Ci Pin, so easier on the eyes. Lots of eye candy in the magic battles. I started reading the novel but paused some time ago, so will be following to see how the story proceeds.
(When will the live action adaptation of Priest's Sha Po Lang finally air??? It already finished filming and was supposed to have started airing this past summer. Think steampunk set in China - personally I would have loved a donghua adaptation of the novel, what with the mecha and giant flying vessels, and might have been easier to get past Chinese censors, who seem to be stricter with dramas compared to donghua ... )
posted by needled at 6:39 PM on October 29, 2021

Lots of shows apparently suffering from schedule collapse. "Faraway Paladin" posted a recap episode last week (blessedly, and probably optimistically, numbered 7.5), and this week has episode 8. I feel conflicted because I want my weekly fix, but I also don't want the production quality to slip either. Episodes 6 and 7 were already suffering from hasty or inept artwork. It will be interesting to see what an extra week bought them.
posted by ardgedee at 3:50 PM on December 4, 2021

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