A warm summer breeze
Another season of anime has passed, and it was quite a blast if you ask me. While I ended up preferring the spring season this year just slightly more, summer season was still a really nice period where many of my interests were focused on.
The season started off pretty crappy with Dog and Scissors being the very first show I got to watch. Not only is it in my bottom five worst show of the year, it’s a show that soured my mood going into the season just a bit.
Thankfully that was all knocked away as the rest of the series started popping up. Instant favorites were Servant X Service, C³bu and Kiniro Mosaic, a shame that only one of those really made it all the way into my favorite picks in the end.
This was also the first season that I went into having openly come out as a trans-girl. After I had done so towards the end of spring season I started living my life very differently and it’s amazing how fast your perception on things can start changing and taking a new form. Especially when things hit close to home.
I mention this because of my excitement for Genshiken Nidaime, a sequel to one of the anime series I’ve rewatched the most, Genshiken and Genshiken 2. In Genshiken Nidaime there’s a character named Hato who is a trans-girl herself. Unfortunately I can not offer any praise to the show. None at all.
Genshiken Nidaime was the first time in years that I dropped a show in less than three episodes. After the second episode of watching how the show dealt with Hato and the topic of transgender issues disgusted me and actually drove me to tears multiple times. While I may have had somewhat of a overreaction due to how close to home it was, it was clear to me that the writers had no intention on dealing with the character seriously or even respectfully. Hato was a walking gag and the people around her was not better.
I could go into more details on how Genshiken Nidaime completely ruined me the two weeks I watched it, but I don’t want this to be a post all about transgender views in anime, because I will be doing a different post for that after I’ve done more research on the matter. But it’s fitting that another show just happened to also share this topic, that show of course being my anime of the season winner Gatchaman CROWDS.
CROWDS did more than amaze me. While I wasn’t all that sold on the first few episodes, it won me over quick before I had even realized there was a trans-person in the show. Now, there are flaws with the depiction in CROWDS, but it’s miles beyond anything else I’ve seen in recent memory, anime or other media. Once again, leaving all of the details on that for the upcoming post regarding that stuff. But CROWDS did give me a good feeling about myself, where as Genshiken Nidaime outright made me dislike myself.
While spring season had the problem of having good shows that turned out bad towards the end, summer season stayed strong for the most part. Kiniro Mosaic and Servant X Service remained enjoyable throughout and it was nice that Majestic Prince got a proper ending that really sent it off in a great way after the other two mecha shows from spring ended pretty badly. Even if Valvrave The Liberator is continuing this season, so it hasn’t actually ended yet. A Certain Scientific Railgun S also came back from its dark days and ended spectacularly.
But many good shows just sort-of disappeared from my radar after a while. Stress and other things got in the way and I felt I was close to walking into a wall again. Hoping to avoid it I took a leave from Just Another Anime Podcast and anime in general for a few weeks. I started catching up on anime again after things had calmed down and I returned to JAAP last week, but I will admit that I am still stressing out now and then to the point where I force myself to just go lay down for a few hours even if I won’t sleep.
I’ve never been very social. I guess I’m not all-out anti-social any more, but I used to be, and there are traces still left from back when I would literally go days without speaking to anyone, online or offline.
While I ended up becoming very social via the internet a few years back, I still struggle to actually speak and interact with people in more than just text exchanges at times. I’ll admit that sometimes even doing the podcasts, which I love, is hard because I just get scared of speaking and want to go away.
I bring this up because I made a whole lot of new friends during my time watching anime this summer. Not only did I go to my first anime convention and met people there, but the amount of people I now speak to via twitter or other social media about anime have increased so much in just 12 weeks, it’s pretty amazing and I’m very thankful for it. I know that a lot of it have specifically come out of me talking online about the same anime series as other people, so I guess it wouldn’t have happened without it.
But when I finally did get back to watching anime, some shows had to take the cut just so I didn’t get into too much at once. Because of this I still have not finished shows like Love Lab, The Eccentric Family or Day Break Illusion, despite enjoying them. I also still need to catch up on Pretty Rhythm Rainbow Live before this weekend, so hopefully that works out for me. But I did catch up and finish Watamote! despite having originally dropped it because I didn’t want to watch it alone.
Maybe I got too spoiled with group-watching anime, because that’s definitely one of the reasons I stopped watching some other shows like Hyperdimension Neptunia and Gifuu Doudou: Kanetsugu and Keiji. But seeing as I ended up giving out three 5/5’s, five 4/5’s and one 3/5 in my series reviews this season I guess I picked the ones I picked pretty well in the end. And while C³bu did end up being that 3/5, I made my case why I think it had the best character this season in Yura Yamato.
So yeah, in closing, I think this season was pretty good. Psychological meltdowns over gender identities aside.
What am I looking forward to the most next season?
When it comes to fall season I am mostly looking forward to getting some good original stuff with Galilei Donna, Nagi no Asukara and Samurai Flamenco. But I can’t deny that Coppelion (which I think airs today) and Arpeggio of Blue Steel: Ars Nova looks like they’ll be right up my alley.
If anything, I’m sad that there seem to be a lack of slice-of-life shows this season, but I guess I can’t be swimming in them all the time. At least Meganebu will bring cute guys, so there’s that.