It doesn’t seem long at all since I was posting my Spring anime season 2011 thoughts, and now the Summer season is finished, doesn’t time just fly? Well, I’ve watched four shows this season, two of which were carried over from the spring. The only show I was interested in but didn’t start was The Idolm@ster. I’m going to give my thoughts on the series I’ve watched and a rating out of 10. Listed from best to worst:
Usagi Drop – 10/10
This is the first anime series that I’ve ever rated 10 out of 10. The reason is simple – this is a series that goes straight to the heart, probes real life emotions about the joys and worries of raising a child. Upon the death of a relative, a 30 year old bachelor finds himself the guardian of a 6 year old girl, completely out of his comfort zone, as he has no experience with children and struggles with women in general. The result is one of the most heartwarming of shows, showing the struggles, development and experiences one goes through with a child. A truly adult anime in that it will only appeal to those old enough to have some experiences with little children and the pure joy they can bring. This show is very natural and, without knowing it, the characters really grow throughout the series. The graphical style is childlike too – pastels and watercolours. And the music is fantastic, especially the OP and ED which never fail to bring a smile to my face. I’d also recommend the manga this is based on, four volumes of which have so far been released in English.
Stein’s;Gate – 9/10This was a two-cour from the spring season. The second half of this superb time-travel anime added the action and meaning to the first cour’s episodes, with the cast trying to undo their time-altering actions which had unforeseen consequences. The characters and their interactions are the key in this series, with the real drama playing off their feelings towards each other.
Hanasaku Iroha – 8/10
Another series carrying over from the spring season. This was more hit and miss. An extremely well drawn slice-of-life anime set in a Japanese onsen ryokan (hot spring resort). The main plot was left to the sidelines in favour of individual character arcs, and although welcome, this series was at its best when concentrating on the main characters of the three generations of Shijima: Sui, Satsuki and Ohana, as well as Ko. This show was always a pleasure to watch on a Sunday afternoon/evening and I shall miss it.
Kami-sama no Memo-chou – 7/10
A show featuring teenage NEET detectives, the Yakuza and highschool kids involved in strange mysteries. Decidedly average, but was at its best on long character driven arcs. Apparently changed the order of events drastically from the manga, which was to its detriment. This show was nothing special but could still be enjoyable, and was the second show this season (after Stein’s;Gate) to heavily feature Dr. Pepper.
For the Fall (urgh, hate that word), or Autumn season, I plan to watch Working’!!, Shakugan no Shana III (Final), and Tamayura ~Hitotose~. I might watch Fate/Zero, Ben-To, and Persona 4: The Animation.