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Autumn Animé season

As usual, I looked at the list of available animé and thought "meh, not much here". As usual, I was wrong.

Terra Formars

First up, you will need to find and watch the OVA first, to understand what is going on. I will distil what I know thus far. Mars was being terraformed by sending over a type of moss and cockroaches. It all went horribly wrong. The cockroaches mutated into giants that kill soft squishy humans, well, because. Two vessels went, two failed. We follow the fate of a third. And back on earth, lots of shady deals mean that the people onboard are lambs to the slaughter, basically.
The series is only marred by a lot of rather ham-fisted censoring. See this second photo for a particularly poignant example.

 

Ushinawareta Mirai wo Motomete

Subtitled in French as "À la recherche du futur perdu", this is a group of six high schoolers, the Astronomy Club. It starts off as your normal slice-of-life with such things as the others trying to set up the girl with the boy (because the boy just doesn't see it). The girl sustains and injury. An embarrassingly sweet confession, and the girl goes away. Awww.... So this is going to be some sort of romance series, right? The girl trips, due to her injury, and this puts her in direct path of an out of control bus. We see blood. We see the others having their breakdown moments in a darkly lit hospital.
Then, back at the Astronomy club, there's a crash and... wait... dead girl is there, and not in a Sankarea way. Boy goes upstairs and finds a naked girl. This is as the credits roll.

Nice. A mindscrew series. Let's hope this is a good mindscrew series and not a "bunch of weird crap for the sake of it". Let's play it out like this - the white haired naked girl is a time traveller or alien (your choice) sent back in time to rescue the girl. She really died, the boy lived a lifetime of regrets, now he has sent somebody back to keep Sarah Connor the girl alive. That's what I'm looking for.

 

Denki-gai no Honya-san (dropped)

A cartoonishly drawn story about some people who work in a comic store in Akiba. It was passable until the moment when the government inspector was outed as an Ero book lover, to which she said yes, she was, and that there is no person alive that does not love Ero. After a stunned silence, the crowd cheered and agreed that they all loved Ero. I cringed hard at that. Series dropped.

In case you didn't know, Ero manga is defined by Wiki as "the term describes any type of perverse or bizarre sexual desire or act; it does not represent a genre of work", and the character pictured holds up a manga with two guys a little closer than friendship would imply.

 

Sora no Method

"Heaven's Method" starts with a girl returning to her home town with her father following the death of her mother. She doesn't really remember her childhood friend, which is surprising given that the friend would appear to be an alien. And a giant spaceship hovers over the town. Yet the Japanese, evidently living in a place full of weirdness, take this in their stride and it is known, there, but not mentioned much. As in "Spaceship over the town? Heiki-heiki...".
This looks to be this season's moeball series, be interesting to see where it goes.

 

Grisaia no Kajitsu (3-ep rule)

Or "La fruit de la Grisaia". More French. A boy with an unknown past is looking for a normal school. He is picked up by a teenage girl that turns out to be the school pricipal (!) and probably not a teenager. The school contains only a few others - a girl dressed in a maid outfit (spot the fanservice angle), a young shy girl, a girl with long red hair that seems to have no problem getting undressed, a blonde that is the dictionary definition of tsundere, and a mysterious lone girl that greets the new boy with a craft knife to the throat. Could be an interesting series if they don't screw it up and put fanservice over plot. This first episode had an intriguing concept, but it also had about as many panty-shots as Highschool Of The Dead and you know what I thought of that...
In a change from normal, this appears to be presented in 21:9 aspect.

Apparently this is based upon a visual novel. An English translation is available, but at something like 5GiB, I will have to give it a miss.

 

Akatsuki no Yona

Normally I don't watch this sort of thing. To be honest, the only reason I downloaded it at all is because the AnimeTake icon reminded me of Paprika. So... in a Chinese-looking setting where people have Korean names and speak Japanese (!), Yona is a young (and dare I say, clueless) princess celebrating her 16th birthday. The boy she has always loved has returned. All is looking good, but the royal bodyguard senses something is off, and pretty quickly we see the boy slay Yona's father and....
A nicely plotted episode, some decent characterisations, this series is for keeps.

 

Trinity Seven (3-ep rule)

Starts as a normal highschool kind of thing, only... It isn't. The sun turned black, everybody vanished, buildings fell apart from intense gravity waves (or some hokey pseudoscience explanation) and...the world was really one boy's reconstructed reality. When he is given the option of death or letting go of the world he used to know, he chooses a third option - become a mage. Thus he is entered into a secret school for people with magical powers.
It is watchable, but hasn't really grabbed me, hence it the three-episode rule.

 

Parasyte - the maxim (3-ep rule)

And this season's horror offering, opening with a husband's head bursting open into a giant mouth to eat his wife's head, is Parasyte. A little maggot that crawls into your ear and hijacks your body. Only in the case of our protagonist, it failed because he was sleeping with earphones in. The maggot instead hijacked his hand and, well, as far as concepts go it is bizarre. I've just sped-read the first three chapters of the manga on MangeReader, and the animé is a fair bit tamer than the original manga.

 

Daitoshokan no Hitsujikai (3-ep rule)

"The Great Library Shepherd", or something like that. A high school boy, at a special prestigious academy (and no, I'm totally NOT buying the 50,000 students and 600 in our class - especially when they save money by animating crowds as grey shapes) enjoys reading by himself in the library. There's a story of a mystical shepherd who can fulfil wishes, and along the way a nervous shy girl and some of her friends join the library club. Or something like that. Three-episode rule.

 

Shirobako

Funny self-referential animé about a five high school girls chasing their dreams of working in the animé industry; and who'd have known that such a moe girl could drive like Vin Diesel? This has potential, oh yes.

 

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso

It is clear from the heavily saturated colours, the pink cherry blossoms, and the ambience of the story, that this is going to be a "first romance". But I'm not fussed. We open with a young pianist with a flawless Beethoven piece, until his life falls apart following his mother's death. A little later, the spirited girl Kaori is given a brilliant introduction getting some kids to accompany her in playing a wonderful little homage to Laputa (complete with pigeons) - watch the homage (flipped) and the Ghibli. The only impending train wreck here is that the longtime childhood friend just introduced these two. Oops.
This has more than a touch of Nodame to it (a nod with the melodica, too - take a look at live action Nodame and Gershin's Rhapsody in Blue like you've never seen it before!), and given the attention to detail of the instruments, I rather suspect this will be an enjoyable series.
(three YouTube links, you can guess I like this)

 

Ore Twintail ni Narimasu (dropped)

Boy likes twintails (pigtails on both sides). He likes them a lot. Think how pervy that could get, then take it up to eleven. Right, you're about there. So.... there are aliens that look like giant lizards that want to steal twintails, and the boy meets a magical girl (or an alien) that gives him a device that can make him become a warrior defender of twintails... by transforming into a girl wearing a combat suit. With, of course, twintails.
Really... How much substance use does it require to be able to think up these sorts of stories?
Episode 1 watched to see if it was as dumb as it sounded. No. It was worse.

 

 

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