Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Spring Anime 2013: Lots of Awesome

Gargantia is probably going to be the standout hit this season
Loving Anime means watching it all so you can weed out the 90 percent that's pure shit. This season started out looking horrible because of the preponderance of tits and ass and high school girls. That crap might be fun if you are a 14 year old virgin, but us older fans have grown increasingly tired of the repeated formulaic exploitation anime that won't seem to go away because of the dedicated masses of grown adolescents that adore it. Every new season becomes an exercise in avoidance, while not missing any hidden gems. These are the gems I've uncovered for Spring 2013.

note: I watch all my anime at Crunchyroll dot com because for seven dollars a month, you don't get to feel like a douche that's just pirating shows that are usually better than regular US broadcast television. You can also watch the episodes in low quality for free without a membership, so I will be linking directly to the shows for your convenience. They WILL make you wait an extra week to see them for free though (around the 15th for most of these).

Arata The Legend

This show is about second chances. How many times has the world sucked, and you just wished you were somebody, anybody else, anywhere in the Universe. You know that under different circumstances in a different time or place you could have been a legend. That's what this show is about. The first episode was pretty strong, but it could go either way. This is the kind of show that could easily become the best of the season, but it doesn't feel like it yet. 

Majestic Prince

Majestic Prince is a double threat. The return of big space ship anime, AND mecha. And while the first episode gets a little cliche and slow at points, it's just so damn nice to see this genre back again. No, this show probably won't be outstanding but you just HOPE it will. I'll be crossing my fingers. The plot is pretty basic but comfortable because it feels so nostalgic. An unknown enemy is attacking the earth, and the worst skilled group of fighters might just have what it takes to save us all. What saved this show from indifference was an incredibly unexpected and powerful ending in the first episode. This is another show that could surprise everyone and become the big hit this season.

Flowers of Evil

Link: Flowers of Evil Episode 1

In what appears to be an homage to Baudelaire, Flowers of Evil is definitely the "artistic" standout so far this season. Intensely creepy. You get the feeling you are watching the main character's decent into insanity. The pace isn't the fastest, so this show won't be for everyone. The animation is completely unique though. I've never seen anything done in this style before. The way facial expressions are captured is nothing short of genius. I don't see this becoming a season hit, but I already see it becoming a cult classic.

Mushibugyo

Link: Mushibugyo Episode 1

Amazing punk theme song (best song so far this season). I had to replay the song ten times. This is a show about heroes saving us from a very shitty evil. It's straight up scream at your screen ice cream dessert. Fist pumping joy. Yes, they are manipulating our feelings but you simply don't care. This show will be a huge hit this season. It won't win any awards, but you'll love it anyway. Sometimes things don't have to be "smart" to be awesome. That, and kickass samurai are usually win.

The Severing Crime Edge

Link: The Severing Crime Edge episode 1
This is the "style" winner so far this season. Yes, it's a little creepy, and yes there's a touch of fetishism as well, but it's just so damn stylish. Every choice of color, the way scenes blend into others, the custom sound track and original score. This is another show that could become a surprise season hit, and will probably become a cult classic. This is definitely the most original show this season, and it creates its own genre at the same time. No small feat.

Muromi-san

Link: Muromi-san Episode 1
SECOND best theme song. Epic bouncy song that goes all 80's metal for the chorus. Yes, this is definitely going to degrade into bullshit harem style anime. There wasn't even a hint of it in the first episode, but it's just so painfully obvious when you've watched enough of these. Still, harem anime can be epic. Think of Love Hina, Nyarko (back this season, breaking the 4th wall all over the place) or even Heaven's Lost Property. Harem isn't exclusively bad. It's just annoying when a harem show is so good that you know it wouldn't have to be harem and it would still be great.  It's like having a friend that's a great person, but also loves Nickleback. Either way, this show looks like it could be a lot of fun.

Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet
Almost too epic for words


Link: Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet Episode 1
WOW. Magical. Technical. Incredible premise. Outstanding artwork. Brilliant concept. This is the kind of show you wish all shows were. The opening is incredibly strong. The first episode of this show grabs you by your lapels and relentlessly drags you, refusing to let you go until it's over and you are whining because you want more. By the end you can tell it's going to be a classic 'fish out of water' vehicle, but damn what a fish, and what perfect water. I don't want to ruin a second of this. I'm whiny because this starts out as FANTASTIC big space anime with an epic battle, and it feels like it's not staying in space. But it could go in any direction with how things end up. This is the show I think will take best of season.

There's nothing else I've seen so far that touches these shows, and I think I've seen everything new this season.

Enjoy!

S