Checking in on the Spring 2017 anime season 'midway' through

June 19, 2017

It's time once again for a 'midway' update on my earlier impressions of this season. This update has been delayed partly because I've gotten lazy and partly because I've been a little bit reluctant to actually admit something about what I'm watching (this happened last season too).

Excellent:

  • Eccentric Family second season: This is perhaps not quite as exciting as the first season was, but that's because we've seen the first season so there are fewer surprises and revelations. What we've gotten is still really great, with character developments substituted for revelations.

    (I have some views about this. The short form version is that in the first season, characters did not grow too much; instead they just got revealed. In the second season, several characters are being forced to move out of their stasis and actually change.)

Very good:

  • WorldEnd: This has continued to be as solidly good as it started out as. The characters are appealing, the twists are interesting and surprising, and it's become one of the rare shows that manage to sell me on the romance involved (and even the process of it happening).

  • Alice & Zoroku: After its initial burst of action in the first arc, the show has focused its energy on the characters and the result has been great. It's warm and charming and very effective at developing Sana as a real, understandable person who comes across as being her (young and confused) age.

Good:

  • My Hero Academia: There are inherent limits to what a shonen show can and will do in a 'sports tournament' setting, and the whole thing can get a bit repetitive with match after match. However, on the good side, MHA has finally mastered the art of not making things feel slow. I have no idea if it actually is slow compared to the manga, but the important thing is that MHA is not dragging in the way it was in the first season, where the padding was blatantly obvious. The result is generally a pleasure to watch.

Okay and sort of on the edge:

  • Re:Creators: The show was doing pretty well until it gave a lot of focus to Magane (and <spoiler> happened). Magane stinks up the joint when she's on screen, partly because she's not actually a real character; she's a cackling plot convenience. I said some things on this on Twitter, but the bit I didn't mention there is that all of the good fiction characters in Re:Creators have clearly grown and changed due to their time in the real world. Magane has not been affected at all.

    Despite my disgruntlement over Magane and some of the general direction of the show, it has been just good enough overall lately to keep me watching for the moment. However, it is at least close to the edge and I won't be terribly surprised if it manages to push me away before it finishes.

Stalled and basically dropped:

  • Rage of Bahamut - Virgin Soul (as of episode 6): I feel sad about more or less completely losing my enthusiasm for this (the original was a pretty good show, after all), and haven't really wanted to officially admit it. Nina is a pretty great character and Rita is always fun, but the show completely failed to interest me in all of the other characters and it insisted on spending plenty of screen time on them and on all of their plot twists. I'm especially uninterested in Kaisar and his angst (Rita had the right idea when she threw him into the canal); he was a pretty much always a wet blanket whenever he appeared.

    (In the original, Kaisar was mostly the straight man to Favaro's comedian, and in Virgin Soul Kaisar alone has worked about as well as you'd expect a straight man all on his own to work.)

As with last season (cf), I feel perfectly happy with how few shows I'm watching. Four shows that I'm solidly enjoying is fine, and I have no particular urge to watch more.

(Anyways, it's biking season so I have other things going on.)


Written on 19 June 2017.
« Looking back at the Winter 2017 anime season

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Last modified: Mon Jun 19 21:05:31 2017
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