Summer Anime 2010 Review

I can still remember the peaceful days of Winter 2009/10 of animu where I remember that I cried buckets load of laughter and hysteria just by watching a typical episode of Baka Test. SUDDENLY, 3/4 of 2010 have now blissfully past which means the last season for animu of 2010 is around the corner! So here’s a simple and clean review of the past concluded Summer Anime ’10 I’ve covered as well as a few Spring Animu a season back that had concluded along this season too. (No screenshots used in this post since I can’t be asked to upload a gazillion amount of shots that seem to hold not much appeal.) Click the jump to continue on~

Heroman

Heroman fortells the story of Joey Jones. A rather timid young boy who dreams to be a hero, due to certain circumstances he experienced in his past. Suddenly, his wish of becoming everyone’s hero came true when Joey found a bust-up robot dumped on the streets and decides to fix it up for God knows how the hell he managed. Coincidentally a random alien race called the Skrugg came into contact to Earth and claims world domination! Destiny that Joey and Heroman met perhaps? The series simply follows Joey and his huge ass robot guy called “Heroman”‘s mission to fend off the Skruggs and retain world peace and become the true hero he longed for.

Personally, Heroman was one hell of a ride for me with a little essence of cons here and there and quite entertaining too. Was rather surprised to see a sudden end for Heroman ending at the classic 26 episodes, when I had thinking that it’s go on for a year or so (it is a STAN LEE show right?) according to 4chan it appears Heroman wasn’t of Japan’s taste and received bad TV ratings which ultimately brought the series to a halt (airs Thursdays 6pm TV Tokyo meaning it’s a prestigious timeslot for an anime I dare say). No second season been confirmed as of yet since the last ended with a cliffhanger where that scientist on crack Dr Minami and his lackeys broke out of prison. Guessing that they had Minami’s return planned out only until Heroman got “axed”, or that Bones had enough of animating Heroman’s crazy action scenes that looks really top-notch. Speaking of the last episode, it was obvious to say even for me that the series was going to end with the Skrugg’s comeback to destroy Earth with Joey and Heroman acting all hard and serious. The sudden boost of Joey’s memories and hardships making it to the screen added to the effect, since this one very battle will very much proves his heroism, also with the cliched romance scene before all this where Joey said his “final” words to Lina where the Helicopter instinctively muted out Joey confessing his liking to her, really I thought I was watching 007 all over again @_@ I also laugh out loud how very little and insignificant of Will’s screen time at the end, which sparks a little mystery as to what happened to him after Joey and Heroman murked the Skrugg’s ass at the end, he wasn’t shown along with the gang posing the cheesy hero look on a rising cliff and even making not much contribution in the fight. Did he even get to reunite with Lina one last time?? ;_; Why would you do that Stan… And speaking of Joey and Lina, despite this show being aimed at little elementary boys, Heroman did puckered up a few love interests around the main characters. The main pairings is obviously Joey and Lina, and other parings including Denton-sensei and Joey’s homeroom teacher’s name which I forgot, and also Joey and Psy. Accorsing to 4chan.

Well I think I said enough here. Heroman is pretty much just a Japanese animated rendition of a typical Marvel Superhero comic/cartoon as well as confusing the Japanese folks especially the little boys as they may think now the entire population of America speaks fluent Japanese (like how American cartoons present that everyone in the world speaks English). Overall, animation quality is obvious superior due to the efforts of BONES, protagonists+sides are pretty well drawn and original in their own way or appearance+background, the antagonists however is not that much original or even memorable as they’re pretty much blown up cockroaches and rejected drafts off of Ben10. Music/BGM are sorta mediocre instead of something more spectacular and the voice acting… well despite the cast being made up of debut and unknown voice actors, the cast is pretty well thought up. Though Joey’s voice and the confusion earlier on in the series of him having long hair and possessing a much feminine voice sparked up rumours that he is in fact a girl (well, it was revealed in the flashback epiusode that is was actually his mother in the picture and not him) is another matter…

It’s been swell, but the swell has stopped swelling. Let Heroman rest in peace for now…

OVERALL RATING: 8/10

Great as a general all-rounder superhero show for the young/pre-teen age, but due to the sudden end and ratings this let the anime down…

Kaichou wa Maid-sama!

That it? To be honest I’m kinda disappointed at the ending of Maid-sama, despite having a open ending was inevitable, I didn’t actually think that it could’ve been THAT open would it? But well, a second season may fit in well in the near future, but that seems unlikely given the status of the ratings…

Overall, I was rather light-heartedly entertained throughout Maid-sama. And a shocker too as this is my second SHOJO animu with Kimi ni Todoke earlier this year as my first. The series basically just centers on the eccentric Misaki Ayuzawa and her slow developing relationship with this guy called Usui. Not much progress I think was made after 25 episodes and even with Aoi’s help (that crossdressing trap) to fast forward their relationship, Misaki is just THAT stubborn and wannabee tsundere to be truthful about herself. Even in the last episode (where the two go around this Cultural Festival) when Usui finally confesses, she still just can’t bring it to herself and still expresses her deep hatred for her, though her body dosn’t say so otherwise.

Also that Hinata guy who appears a few episodes before the end, implying to be a rival of Usui’s and form a love triangle with Misaki in the middle, plays not much role of a “love rival” and made not much impact at all in Misaki and Usui’s relationship, as with other Shojo titles they do. Over the top. The main reason I think this is due to the timing. They may as well could’ve introduced him into the series HALF WAY IN when the show migrated into the Summer season, then the second half of the series can focus on the love triangle thing, if there ever was one in the manga.

On the contrary, Maid-sama turned out to pretty good for a healthy adolescent guy like me. I like how they did with the backdrops are always abstract water colourings to make it a more natural feel, that or JC were low on the budget. The colour palette could’ve made do with a little brightening since I feel that they the colouring guys made the colours rather too saturated.

OVERALL RATING: 7/10

Entertaining for the majority, quality for the few. Maid-sama turns out to be an innovative mediocre show.

Rainbow

The most controversial animu I’ve watched this year. I was in fact going to drop this earlier on when this started since the grotesque themes didn’t really suit my tastes (glass rod ass raep? seriously?) but as things went on it actually turned out to be the most heart-warming tear-jearking bro-fisting anime I’ve seen yet. The story basically centers around these 6 juvenile kids. Set several years after WW2, the story focuses on how these 6 outcast kids turn their lives around through any round-a-bout obstacle they come their way due to their inspirational other cell mate who happened to be the same as them. The first half covers their time in prison, where there happens to be this obnoxious guard who sets a grudge against out main characters and a old shotacon geezer who literally ass-raeped all the convicts ass during their time. The second half covers their time out of jail and aspiring their dreams, also with the Kamina-risque passing of the six’s ringleader, the plot focuses one by one their set course to turn their lives around and realise their dream. The series ultimately ends with each and everyone fulfilling their dreams while keeping hold of the promise of their aniki.

Even though Rainbow does explicitly express a rather dark and depressing theme with sadistic violence and ass-raeping and seedy themes later on, Rainbow does give off a lesson and morale that even a person who’s the lowest of low can achieve anyone’s life long dream.

Overall I actually enjoyed watching Rainbow, despite a unappealing dodgy start and a, really unfitting narrator, it got back on its tracks later on and delivered out its true core potential as a real bro-loving animu.
The animation as usual is top notch being dine by Madhouse, especially the violent and gory parts of the show bringing out Madhouses’ true “mad” art. Sadly though, with the elegant convenient finish of both the original manga and the anime’s finished run, the series as a whole finally has come to an end. And even more depressingly, there isn’t much of a fanbase surrounding this inspirational series for it to be actually recognised.

OVERALL RATING: 7/10

Blessing of the Campanella

(Shukufuku no Campanella if you’re feeling wapanese)

Urgh… How I detested this show at first, then after a few episodes, this actually came out pretty decent. Campanella was mainly rather happy-go-lucky for my tastes and the plot seemed to be straightforward, even for the climax at the end. Being set in a olde fantasie land where magic and flashy cosplay are abundant, the series revolves around Leciester and his dis-owned harem, who appeared to all be in this “clan” (YES I SAID CLAN, BUT NOT THAT KIND OF YAKUZA CLAN) called Oasis. Basically in the World of Campanella, clans are typically guilds that take upon quests submitted upon the civilians. Think Fairy Tail but dumbed down and an extra helping of fanservice and flags. At the end of the first episode in this weird magical version of a meteor shower Leciester randomly finds a sleeping pure loli resting in some flashy unprotected church, which then she awakes and calls herself Minette and Leciester her “Papa”. (I can see the ending already…). Then throughout the series we basically see the happy-go-lucky episodical plots revolving around Minette and her enjoyment of the world along with the rest of the gang, doing quests or something much moar entertaining that any ole creepy otaku would be satisfied with. Obviously, the series then begins to conclude with a climax, which I think is the most ridiculous plot for a climax in the history of anime original climax ends. So basically this thing called Eru, could put into standards a currency of magic that brings magic to the world is fucking up, which makes everything else in the world that uses magic to fuck up too, including Minette-chan and her trusty friend Miriam, which is revealed that both of Minette and Miriam are some sort of AI dolls that can live with the help of this magical Eru. Obviously the climax here is that the characters all go out and help their newly formed friend to restore peace and the normal flow of this magic, and also insert random unimportant antagonists here with weak fighting scenes and done, Campanella’s rather rushed sub-plot of a climax and end. And finally it obviously ends a “happily evar after” sequence where they all go back to their everyday lives.

It surprised me so that I had actually endured all these 12 episodes with snapping when I initially intended of dropping this after episode 4. Guess the curiosity of the dirty scenes was the thing that held me onto this series…

OVERALL RATING: 4/10

Just another typical anime-eroge with a straightfoward plot and a hell-load of fanservice but at the same time, not much actual fanservice at all…

Ookami-san and her Seven Companions

(Ookami-san to Shichinin no Nakamatachi)

Now this is a interesting one. The very first time I lay my eyes on this was during the Anime Fair thing back in March ’10, where they were showing lots of upcoming anime PVs to the general public, and Ookami-san was one of them. Like everyone else, I shouted “ZOMG! IT’S TAIGA IN PUBERTY1!! TORADORA S2!??”, the second thing was the fact that a certain Kuroko was doing the constant narration in the show. At that moment I had in my mind that Ookami-san was the one to watch this Summer.

And I guessed wrong. Ookami-san didn’t hold much appeal to myself as compared to the other series available in the season roster. If this were to be shown earlier on in the moons of Winter 2009/10, that would’ve been forgiven (since most of the shows then sucked :P), but it appears JC Staff has done goof’ by placing Ookami-san in a season that’s been HI-JACKED by extremely funny comedy sketches and PERVERTED JOKES. SEXUAL INNUENDO. 3P. Which I shall elaborate later on.

Back at Ookami-san though, the series did show its worthiness in character design and a whimsical plot. The characters, in my tastes are actually well preserved, with each character having their own distinct appearance, though I do think each one is based off a stereotypical anime personality… (The TSUNDERE, the LOLI, the MAID, the WEIRD ONE, the BISHONEN, the STALKER, the ELITISTFAG, the STRICT woman and the SHY guy) Though of course, what makes Ookami-san draw the line, separating themselves away from the other Shonen Light Novel > Anime is that the incorporation of RL circumstances bounded around each and every character. Example, rape is mentioned between Ookami and that dude with the godly combat moves (weird that the “used goods” reaction that Ookami is “used goods” didn’t happen much), adultery and consequences of affairs is added too to the series, surrounding our cute and innocent Ringo and her “biological” sister Shirou, and right at the last episode, financial problems dumped upon the godly character Machiko (which I hate the fact that she was only introduced this late into the series). This surprised me a little at first being that I expected Ookami-san to be another one of a idyllic romance-comedy type of show rather being something completely different. But even still, I find this quiet a nice touch to the character’s background.

Though on the criticisms, I really feel that Ookami-san was rather short lived. Looking at the “episodic” episodes and the light novels there seems to be more important material and potential Ookami-san could’ve had, if the series could’ve went on a bit longer. 12 episodes didn’t seem enough to me, while 70% of the series was simply focusing at one of the main characters, there isn’t much significance going on besides that, excluding the supposedly rushed climax and the sudden omake end. What could’ve made the length of plot better I suppose is to double the amount and have it run at 26 episodes or so. Cuz then half of it can focus on the characters so that we can know them better and the the second half focusing on the actual plot! Guess due to production costs/budget they didn’t seem to have the power to do that…

Overall, Ookami-san plays a bit of a role merging the animu world to the RL world, though in a negative way… The characters are fun loving, though the views drastically change once you get to know them more and the plot as episodic as ever. Oh and also the fanservice on a tipsy side sadly… RIE KUGUMIYA PLAYING A MINOR CHARACTER!? FUUUUUUUUU

OVERALL RATING: 7/10

Highschool of the Dead

Boobs. Guns. Blood. Zombies. Fanservice. All in one show. With a weak plot that is.

Truth be told, I surprisingly enjoyed watching HOTD from the start and all the way till episode 10 (Episode 11/12 was an original ending making it shite by default in my terms). Though it was rather bitter at times for me with the unusual measure of questionable fanservice along the way, which made it really hard for me to watch with several people right behind me and laptop screen, and also a certain epic scene made it all the more.

In tradition to Madhouses cunning way of concluding its Manga > Anime projects with their own “super special awesome” MADHOUSE-risque ending well… actually there isn’t actually a definite closed conclusion. The team live on to fight against the zombies for survival (no clue on how they get their food/water/supplies), and HOTD ends with “not with a bang but a whimper”. The catch line quoted from a certain famous poet which plays off the series. Whether this just simple makes way for a continuation in terms of a second season, or that HOTD anime rests in peace with an abrupt ending, Madhouse has yet to decide…

Overall, I thought HOTD is a wonderful series. The characters played their part (excluding the ridiculously oversized and plushy breasts), the animation as smooth as ever and the awesome action scenes as badass as ever too. On the downside I find the ecchi scenes rather too redundant, the plot development being too relaxed and the censors being as a peeve as a whole. On the contrary, the budget for HOTD seems to be seemingly high with 12 completely unique songs being performed at the end of each episode, and the seemingly vivid visuals presented in the early eps too. Seemingly.

On the bright side finally, HOTD did manage to pick up a certain dubious meme to be remembered everywhere on the internet…

Knowing that it was Madhouse that did the work, I can safely say that the animation is top quality, though a let down on the censors, even for the digital broadcasts, though it cam be forgiven due to the regulations Japan has for TV broadcasting.

OVERALL RATING: 7/10

Occult Academy

I wasn’t expecting anything much for Occult Academy, due to the fact that information upon the series was scarce being another anime original, thus the plot being totally unknown. Nevertheless, Occult Academy did deliver its full potential I guess with the last remaining episodes bringing out the full core of the Power of Anime project.

Not gonna go into full details but, theres still a few lingering debates going on about the true ending of Occult Academy, which was never explicitly reveals in the last episode. From such topics from rumours of Maya possibly being a shotacon now that she is left with the younger Bunmei of that time, to whether if Bunmei was actually alive in the future, taking into account time travelling and the time paradoxes and the possibility that Bunmei and Maya got married! (though the age difference would be big…). Needless to say, here’s my gist of the ending; The world has been saved with the efforts of old Bunmei’s sacrifice in 1999, and newly reformed Bunmei, Adult Maya and her oyajii dad living happily ever after in the future in 2012. But just maybe perhaps an extra episode in the last DVD/BD version of the series will be announced explaining the end result in a nicely refined epilougue, but that’s most likely never to happen ;_;

Overall, Occult Academy was one hell of a ride as well. The character designs all well and done, though quite creepy at times… The plot rather creative following the unfolding route with untied strings attached and the ending all well thought out an’ done. On the downside, the plot at first was rather slow paced then normal, and the ending quite rshed but got its job done as efficiently as it possibly could.

Occult Academy may not be one of the most best hit in anime first history, but is one of the most intriguing, I’d recommend this to anyone if they’re fine with a slow-paced start and silhouette of dicks…(good times!)

OVERALL RATING: 8/10

Rest in peace Occult Academy, you served me well…

Strike Witches 2

Ah. Strike Witches second season. I actually was really anticipating this right after I watched the first season last year (and w/ a noobish review I did later) and found out that there was a continuation. Alas, that train of thought of anticipation for Strike Witches 2 faded a bit as that thought moved onto Mitsudomoe and SYD, which were actually one of my most favourite shows this season. Meaning poor old Strike Witches 2 was, to put it bluntly drowned in my watch list to nearly at the bottom of my priorities. Nevertheless, Strike Witches did serve up a good appetite for me in terms of it’s good ole traditional fanservice along with fully upgraded panties, now that AIC is now handling the project since Gonzo is now “dead”.

In a way, Strike Witches 2 again follows the same episodic structure as the first season, which connects into a fine whole plot of the series leading up to a climatic ending to finish off the series. Hate to say it but, I wasn’t actually that fond of Strike Witches 2 as I did in the first, maybe was the fact that I didn’t have much on my watchlist other than Strike Witches itself, which made me be fully focused on it and spent more time appreciating the series.

In terms of plot, it directly follows on from the first with a slight time skip into the future. The full Strike Witches team is back and reformed as the Neuroi are back as strong as ever, as the fend off the Neuroi which are invading the planet again prior to the first. We are also introduced into another new Strike Witches later in the series, that being Hanna, a Karsland dweller. Though the fact that she doesn’t make much impact on the series other than in episode 10 disappoints me.

Overall, the second season did quite live up to its expectations in terms of service and quality, the series typically ends with the Neuroi being again, totally obliterated with Miyafuji and Mio seemingly losing all their magical powers, the team again disbanded while new teams form in other countries, alas the world is in harmony once more. It was als announced half-way into the series that a continuation of Strike Witches will be made. I am hoping for this to be based off another new set of characters in anothr new plot setting like in the original light novels since the 501st seems to be getting old, and with the end of the second season, the plot appears to have closed itself with Miyafuji appearing to retire as a witch, as she already fulfilled her goal.

Nevertheless, the legacy of Strike Witches will continue into 2011!

OVERALL RATING: 7/10

Asobi ni Ikuyo!

Now this one will be a laugh. Asobi in a way was more of a mediocre romantic comedy for my tastes. Just so you know, AnI includes your usual typical fanservice w/ added misunderstandings which they imply are “funny”, the typical love triangle- or square for that matter, a trusty harem and what’s more FURRIES. FURRIES EVERYWHERE.

Not gonna go on about this, but Asobi ni Ikuyo is what you’d typically expect of your usual romance comedy type of animu, not much new is presented other than it’s set on Okinawa fitting into the Summer season it’s slotted in as well as furries and DNA forensics. Overall, Asobi ni Ikuyo. Not really my cup of tea.

OVERALL RATING: 4/10

Mitsudomoe

Saving the best till last, Mitsudomoe is without a doubt one of the best anime of this season. Everything about is just so glorious.

The plot – Adventures of three 6th grader triplets at elementary with -prescrewed up minds

The animation – as robust as ever,  good job Bridge!

The comedy – making ones own trivial mistake to dramatic extent as if life depends on it

And as you may know, I am a sucker for hilarious comedy type of shows that make laugh my ass of, and Mitsudomoe fits right into that godly tier. There are so many points I want to talk about but can’t being that there’re literally over 9000. So you’ll just have to watch it and see for yourselves. Also the fact that the creator of this perverted little series is a cute n moe rl GIRL, this just makes it all the more better.

I can safely say that hilarious comedy animes have totally dominated this season. And with a second season fully announced, I can humble say that Mitsudomoe will live on.

Overall, Mitsudomoe is just so totally awesome that it’s getting full marks from me. So… beautiful…

OVERALL RATING: 10*/10

Seitokai Yakuindomo

From Mitsudomoe, there’s SEITOKAI YAKUINDOMO. My most bestest favourite anime this season. SYD has always lighted up my depressing Sundays right from the first episode. If you haven’t already known the true awesomeness of SYD, then SHAME ON YOU! I’d recommend you go onto Wiki or ANN and read their subtle plot.

I guess the reason why SYD is so awesome is the reason that it plays a little reverse psychology, where instead of the guy doing all the perverted jokes, this time it’s actually the GIRLS who are doing them and the guy being downright normal. If only other anime and puberty was like this… the whole world would be in harmony and peace. Other reasons I believe why SYD is so godly is the fact that each character takes on a role of a stereotypical character that you’d see in any ole animu. Theres the curious, air head, minimised loli, cynical, perverted, healthy school boys/girls, running into corners, late for school with toasters… you name it. Also the fact that they also make fun of the otaku pop culture, including the Kannagi case where all otakus in the world reacted that Nagi could possible be used good, which took the pup culture by storm. Also rejecting any scenes of questionable content, implying that Agnes-chan and the moralists will be after them. AND LETS NOT FORGET THE UNPRETENTIOUS GEEEOOOORRRGEEE!!!!!!

Needless to say, SYD has been a fun ride for my and most likely for everyone else too, sadly a second season seems too vague to come to light as of yet, since there’s not much material left in the original manga to be based off of until in a few years or too (4 pages of material every week, NOT ENOUGH!!) despite it being jokingly being announced at the end of the episode,

OVERALL RATING 10*/10

SYD has been a great fun experience, but good things come at a great cost, meaning a continuation seems to be abstinent…

2 thoughts on “Summer Anime 2010 Review

  1. Ellen October 18, 2010 / 20:05

    Finally someone else that can appricate the geniusness (I don’t know if this is a word, but I hope you get what I mean) of Mitsudomoe and Seitokai Yakuindomo. Those anime are just too great to be put together in one season XD

    • Nyarth October 21, 2010 / 17:15

      So true. Luckily Mitsudomoe will be back in Winter for season 2 ^o^

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