Brief impressions of the Spring 2019 anime season so far
As before it's well past time for my views on how this season has shaken out so far, following up on my first episode reactions. A good part of why I'm only writing this basically half way through the season is that there has been something that I didn't really want to admit about my watching this season, and I kept hoping that I would get up the energy to change it before I wrote this entry.
- Fairy Gone: This is the most interesting show I'm watching this
season, although perhaps not the best made one. Part of why I like
it quite a lot is that it's simply different from the usual run of
the mill stuff we get every season, and since it's decently put
together it automatically gets positive points from me. It also
gets positive points for a competent female protagonist.
(The character names are amusingly terrible, but at least they're trying.)
- Demon Slayer: This is a quite well made and somewhat atypical shonen action vehicle, with pretty much all of the things that you would expect from the genre and only a few surprises. We had our training episodes, we had our 'prove yourself in this killer test' episodes, and so on, although we recently had what could be a major deviation from schedule (but probably isn't, because this is an adaptation of an ongoing Shonen Jump manga). I find it nice to watch but not compelling, and Nezuko remains tragically underused.
- Wise Man's Grandchild: This is mindless and not particularly great entertainment. I am enjoying the hijinks so far because I am easily amused and right now, I'm willing to spend some time watching this (often over actual popcorn). There is no real tension in the show; the only real question and most of the amusement is how deep a hole Shin is going to dig for himself this time around, and what crazy things are going to ensue. I do appreciate that all of the other significant characters are getting to power up too; this is not just the 'Shin is awesome and everyone else sits around' show.
- Sarazanmai (#2): I have a somewhat rocky relationship with Ikuhara shows; I stalled out on Penguindrum and ended up with divided opinions on Yurikuma Arashi where it didn't really connect with me. Watching Sarazanmai feels like something I should do and portions of it are perfectly entertaining, but after two episodes I haven't really connected with it and it has my Penguindrum problem (cf) where at least some of the people we are supposed to follow and like are actually currently kind of terrible people, which is hard for me to get behind. Perhaps I will like it more if I watch more, but so far I am many episodes behind and that keeps not changing.
In my current slow and relaxed level of anime watching, I'm thinking of this as a decently good season. I have one show that is outright interesting and two that are okay at different levels, and in theory there is some good stuff that I'm just not watching (right now).
Looking back on the Winter 2019 anime season
It's time (and well past time) for my traditional look back at what I watched this past Winter season, to follow up on my earlier impressions. I've been lazy about doing this entry, partly because there is not a lot to talk about.
- Kemurikusa: In the end, Tatsuki and his crew came through with a worthy follow on to Kemono Friends. The show started slow and had some early speed bumps, but it picked up as it went along and even ended up giving us a decent bunch of explanations for things and fully sold the love story that orbited through the show. This isn't flawless but it was unquestionably good.
- The Magnificent Kotobuki: The show remained perfectly entertaining on an episode by episode basis and the last two episodes were really something; they were compulsive and genuinely tense in a way that I hadn't expected at all. But the show's problems also remained, which is that it didn't really have a compelling long-term thread running through, although it did develop a plot for the climax. We did get a bunch of nice character moments, though, and maybe even a few things that could be called character development.
In shows that didn't start this season, I enjoyed That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime all the way through; it retained all of its good virtues as fine popcorn entertainment. However, it wound up ending with quite weird pacing, where it rushed through portions of the final storyline (dropping or significantly altering a number of plot elements in the process), then abruptly slowed down to a very leisurely pace and outright did a final recap episode. A show that both drops elements of the original story to save time and then does a recap episode is a rather odd thing, and I can't avoid some obvious speculations (although these speculations are often wrong; 'production problems' is an all-purpose idea that the fandom has and is usually not right).