Summer 2015 Anime
July 3, 2015 6:48 AM - Subscribe

Summer 2015 anime have been starting up this week. Which are people planning to watch? Which ones would people like to follow on FanFare? What are your first impressions as the first episodes air?
posted by needled (29 comments total)
Gangsta stands out as the most interesting so far. I don't think it's on Crunchyroll so that hampers my ability to keep up with it.
posted by vaghjar at 1:52 PM on July 3, 2015

I'll definitely be watching Gatchaman Crowds Insight, as I enjoyed Gatchaman Crowds (and its OST track "In the name of love" GATCHAMAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!)

Gate could be entertaining, but I don't have any expectations for it right now.
posted by needled at 7:00 PM on July 3, 2015

Gintama continues and I like it a lot but holy heck would it be problematic to set up a Fanfare thread for, being as the current season begins with episode 280-something, the core cast consists of around 3 dozen characters, most of whom have previously-delineated relationships with each other, and there are frequent payoffs for setups that began over 200 episodes ago.
posted by ardgedee at 4:56 PM on July 4, 2015

Gatchaman Crowds Insight has a 15 minute recap/mini Episode 0, and Episode 1 is out as well.

So far it looks good, though if anything the narrative is even more fragmentary than in the first Gatchaman Crowds.

They're more ambitious and seemingly running with a bigger budget than last year. There's some really interesting world building going on, so if last year's series was worth watching, this one ought to reward putting up with the occasionally threadbare exposition too.
posted by ardgedee at 5:15 PM on July 4, 2015

I recognize the quality of Gatchaman Crowds, but the series just annoys me- first because it takes pretty much nothing except the name from the original series, and secondly because of the "always right" informed ability of the main character.

And yet it's a season with such a scanty selection of good offerings, I may end up watching it as well. Other than that, it looks like gangsters and a boy and his tiger may be it.
posted by happyroach at 2:43 PM on July 5, 2015

Crowds is definitely a series for which you have to occasionally unplug brain and let the pretty images wash over you. That said, it looks like Hajime's psi/precog/whatever will be handled better this time; in the first series being right all the time didn't always work out because of her inability to convince the people around her; in the second series it looks less like she's always right and more that she can simply see things other people can't, and there's no telling yet whether that ability can be tricked -- which itself could lead to complications if her colleagues have gotten too accepting of her powers.

And heh -- I should be of age for the name appropriation to annoy me, but I honestly have no nostalgia around the original series, and even the remixed theme song didn't push any buttons for me.
posted by ardgedee at 7:17 AM on July 6, 2015

Little Witch Academy is likely to be pretty good.

Watched the first episode of Akagami no Shirayuki-hime, hoping it'd be a bit like Kemono no Sōja or Moriboto, but it's not quite that progressive. Onto the maaaybe list it goes.

Gangsta is looking to be close to another season of Black Lagoon without the salaryman. Or, I suppose you can pretend that Rock lost his hearing from all the heavy arms fire without ear protection, and took up the katana. In Southern Italy.
posted by pwnguin at 9:17 PM on July 7, 2015

Gatchaman Crowds approved for FanFare, I will have Gatchaman Crowds Insight episode 1 post up before episode 2 airs this weekend. It's going to be on FanFare as Gatchaman Crowds Season 2, as IMDB doesn't have a separate entry for Insight.

(I'm still a bit bummed I wasn't able to start recapping the 2015 Arslan Senki anime on FanFare, as it's not listed on IMDB and my request for it disappeared into the ether.)
posted by needled at 4:16 AM on July 8, 2015

I've started an Anime Club for Fanfare; feel free to tag old Fanfare threads with anime_club to make it easier to find old show discussions.
posted by ardgedee at 6:15 PM on July 11, 2015

Oremonogatari ("My love story!!") has been pretty good so far. It veers into the ridiculous often enough that it feels endearing and entertaining instead of just sappy.

Himouto Umaru-chan is… dreadful. It's like the worst kind of wish-fulfillment show, in that literally none of the characters even feel like they're worth trying to care about. Watched the first two episodes together and was pretty blah about it overall, then tried the third episode when it came out to give it one more chance, except that I didn't even make it to the end before just giving up entirely.
posted by DoctorFedora at 12:21 AM on July 29, 2015

I'm probably late to the party...

Anybody who hasn't watched, or heard anything about, Gakkou Gurashi is encouraged to do the former, if possible without doing the latter.

Ushio no Tora is a love letter to 90's shonen, or something. I'm not really up on the shows it's riffing on, but the air of nostalgia is so thick that it's detectable even if you don't know exactly what the creators are nostalgic for. Fortunately it's a good time all by itself; the art is nice, and it's an appealing mixture of action and humor.
posted by Sing Or Swim at 7:52 PM on August 7, 2015

Ushio and Tora isn't nostalgic for 90s Shonen- it IS 90s Shonen. It originally came out 1990-1996,-around the same time as series such as YuuYuu Hakusho. l like it because it's a pretty faithful rendition of the manga.
posted by happyroach at 9:23 AM on August 8, 2015

Happyroach--yeah, there was one in the 90's, but there's also a newly produced version of Ushio No Tora that's airing now; it's on Crunchyroll. MAPPA is working on it, and it's slated for 40 episodes.
posted by Sing Or Swim at 6:51 PM on August 9, 2015

(...or maybe you meant that the manga was originally from the 90's, and I misunderstood you. I'll just let myself out.)
posted by Sing Or Swim at 6:53 PM on August 9, 2015

Ushio and Tora, is old and new, then and now. ;')

Seriously, I've had this hard-to-define background radiation level of annoyance with a lot of modern anime direction, so the retro nature of Ushio and Tora really feels like a breath of fresh air.
posted by happyroach at 11:04 PM on August 9, 2015

Anybody who hasn't watched, or heard anything about, Gakkou Gurashi is encouraged to do the former, if possible without doing the latter.

Oh gods yes. This one has all the feels but you need to know nothing about it to get the best impact of it.

Meanwhile in the very guilty pleasures department, Monster Musume: Everyday Life with Monster Girls is a harem series slightly different from the norm as you don't have the blue haired loud girl and the white haired shy girl etc fighting it out for the love of the bland but kind protagonist, but various monstrous archetypes: snake woman, harpy, mermaid, centaur etc. The protagonist's voice actor is the same as that of the male main character from Hitsugi no Chaika, which was a pleasant surprise. Somewhat heavy on the fan service of course and you have to accept the idea that all these women fall in love with him just because he's kind, but if you can get past it it's nicely light and fluffy.

Sore ga Seiyuu! is like last year's Shirobako, an inside look at the anime industry itself, focusing on voice actors. Animation by studio Gonzo, not the best quality therefore, but it's been enjoyable so far.
posted by MartinWisse at 8:36 AM on August 15, 2015

I went into the first episode of Gakkou Gurashi partly spoiled. That is, I had read, generally, what the premise of the whole story was--but I didn't know the details. And it still more or less blew me away. If you're going to give it a try, give it a full episode before you decide whether or not you like it.

Monster Girls isn't bad. That is, if you've made your peace with the idea that you are going to spend a certain portion of your finite lifespan watching jiggly cartoon boobs, you could do worse than this show. It seems like there are about fifty characters in the opening credits, and at the half-season mark they've only introduced like six of them, so I'm not sure how that's gonna work.

Working!!! is in its third season. At the end of the second, I wrote it off as one of those shows that abandons story progression in favor of just treading water, maintaining the status quo, and doing the same gags over and over. But I watched a few episodes of the new season anyway, and... and... I hesitate to even type this, but it seems like it might actually be going somewhere.
posted by Sing Or Swim at 2:37 PM on August 15, 2015

I attempted the first episode of the first series of Working!! yesterday, but it seemed a bit too much cringe comedy to me. Does it get better?
posted by MartinWisse at 9:52 AM on August 16, 2015

(It's been so long since I saw the first season that I had to consult an episode list on Wikipedia...) I don't know, Watamote is the example that comes to my mind of a painfully cringe-inducing show (that I watched anyway because I thought it was very good). I don't usually like cringey stuff, but Working for the most part doesn't strike me that way. I tend to think of it more as absurd humor, but maybe I'm just calibrated differently than you... What is it that's making you cringe, particularly?
posted by Sing Or Swim at 12:42 PM on August 16, 2015

We've given up watching this season's run of Gintama, because (spoiler, maybe?) the mangaka is wrapping up and shutting down the series and the anime seems to be following suit. The tone this season shifts from surreal slapstick to grimdark that just grinds on and on. So we'll be continuing our effort to watch the previous 270-ish episodes first -- and we have only about 210 or so to go, not including the two feature films...

On the other hand, Gatchaman Crowds has gotten amazing. It's become a meditation on crowd phenomenon, social action and the morality of populism. But it's still a sentai series, and very stylishly done, having as much or more to do with Takeshi Murakami-led Superflat design as with the flat-colored anime that inspired it. It's pretty amazing, and even if it falls on its face in the final stretch (as its first season kinda' did) it's going to be worth rewatching some time in the future; there's a lot going on, but it rarely feels like it.

The only other point of interest so far has been Miss Monochrome, for which we're catching up on the second season. The first was 13 episodes of 4 minutes each (including opening title and closing music production) -- just long enough for a comedy blackout sketch. Pretty easy to binge-watch. Apparently successful enough since the second season's episodes are 7 minutes each. The premise is that a Hatsune Miku-type robot/hologram (hard to tell) tries to make sense of the world and also become a super-idol. It's silly but in a deadpan way.
posted by ardgedee at 2:17 PM on August 16, 2015

I keep reading really interesting-sounding things about Gatchaman, which are completely at odds with the fact that I unfortunately just didn't like the few episodes of the first season that I watched. I've already gone back to it once to see if maybe I was mistaken and I actually liked it, but no... Is the new season stand-alone-able at all?
posted by Sing Or Swim at 2:32 PM on August 16, 2015

I thought the first season was a mixed success; very interesting for taking the tropes of sentai shows to unexpected places, but stumbling on details like character portrayals and some flubs in the plot, and the final episode doesn't so much end as stop.

The current season is considerably better in many ways, but it's also completely dependent on the first season. I don't know if you'd have to watch the first season through to keep up with the second, but if you gave up because Hajime was the newbie who was smarter than all the veterans, that the globe-spanning supercomputer is benign and trustable, and so on; you might not enjoy having to take that for granted as canon in order to understand what's going on in the current season. Trying not to spoil things too much, but now that we're halfway through the season there've been some interesting disruptions of what the first season set up.

If nothing else, it's probably worth checking episode 0 of the second season, which is both a catch-up and short adventure story that's pretty fun to watch and can stand on its own.
posted by ardgedee at 3:59 PM on August 16, 2015

Seems to me that in the last bit of Gatchaman that I saw, a bunch of people who were trapped in a suspended cable car were being rescued by means of a Crowdsourced Good Samaritanism App, or something. As a crabby misanthropist, I find this to be a hard sell... I mean, first of all, having seen how people actually act towards one another on the internet, if it was me hanging up there I'd jump and take my chances on the trees breaking my fall. Maybe the Gatchaman app requires that you pay five bucks to get an account...

I don't know, that wasn't really what bothered me about the show, but I don't remember anything else about it. The problem now is that in order to have any idea what was going on, I'd have to rewatch the bits that already didn't grab me to begin with...
posted by Sing Or Swim at 4:27 PM on August 16, 2015

I tend to have a brighter view of human response in emergencies, but there have been sections of the second season where I have been thinking "Are these really human beings we're depicting?"

Right now, the only things I'm watching on Crunchyroll are Ushio to Tora, Rokka no Yuusha (which does for Central America what your average fantasy anime does for Europe), Charlotte (It takes a Thief crossed with X-Man). I was going to watch Gangsta, but oh well, adblock.
posted by happyroach at 4:54 PM on August 16, 2015

> a bunch of people who were trapped in a suspended cable car were being rescued by means of a Crowdsourced Good Samaritanism App, or something. As a crabby misanthropist, I find this to be a hard sell...

That's exactly the thing the story is exploring in the second season. Internet-mediated collectivism not the utopia you think the writers think it is. Although it's not entirely not either. Keeping in mind, I guess, that this is a Japanese production for Japanese audiences. There are different norms of social obligation (and the peer pressure that enforces it) than in the U.S.
posted by ardgedee at 5:07 PM on August 16, 2015

Yeah, Rokka no Yuusha is sort of intriguing. I'm behind on my Crunchyroll shows because Crunchyroll decided not to have a Samsung TV app anymore. I considered deciding not to have a Crunchyroll subscription anymore, but then I ended up getting a Roku. Anyway, I'm still catching up on Rokka--I'm just getting to the "who's the impostor?" episode.

Several of my very favorite shows are things that I tried to watch, almost gave up on after an episode or two, and only came back to months later. I'll probably end up having another look at Gatchaman to make sure it isn't one of those...
posted by Sing Or Swim at 9:18 PM on August 16, 2015

What is it that's making you cringe, particularly?

First episode, the new guy roped into the restaurant calls the twentysomething manager old and she takes revenge by assigning him to all the shifts, he complains to a coworker, is enlightened and prepares to apologise to her -- in front of a full restaurant and that's where I had to switch off.
posted by MartinWisse at 1:50 AM on August 17, 2015

Oh, yeah, I remember the manager being mad at him for that--I don't think that particular gag goes on for any length of time. Generally, everybody likes Takanashi, the manager included, and he's regarded as one of the more reliable people working there. There's an androphobic female character who clobbers him every time he gets too close to her, but she's very apologetic about it; he resolves to help her get over her phobia, and everybody admires his open-minded attitude towards getting punched out a minimum of five times per episode.

Anyway, I'd say the show's humor, by and large, does not have to do with putting the main character in embarrassing or uncomfortable situations. But I'm a little foggy on the earlier episodes, so I apologize if I'm steering you wrong.
posted by Sing Or Swim at 9:33 AM on August 17, 2015

God Eater is on Crunchyroll, and it's pretty entertaining. Lovely art by UFOtable, and a story about some people fighting monsters with swords that turn into guns that eat things. It's all terribly serious, and I'm guessing MC is OP.

I didn't think much of the first episode or two of Charlotte... and while I still wouldn't say it's brilliant, the story has gone off in a completely unexpected direction at least three times in, like, eight episodes. It's never going to be my favorite show, but it's more interesting than the first couple of episodes would lead you to suspect.
posted by Sing Or Swim at 10:52 AM on August 31, 2015

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