With Winter 2018 in the home stretch the time comes for a seasonal review piece. This post will be updated with each show that ends because at the time of writing this(3/28) Violet Evergarden, After the Rain, 3-Gatsu no Lion, and Fate/Extra Last Encore have yet to end. But aside from those let’s get in to a very stacked season.
Note:The order of shows is not the ranking, that’s at the bottom of the post
Gintama: Silver Soul Arc Part 1:
Gintama enters its final arc and it is bringing the biggest battles it possibly can. Every side character is back and better than ever. And I’m eating every second of it up. Seeing the people of Edo defend themselves from the Liberation army has been delivering emotional punch after emotional punch, while also bringing back some of the best one off gags in much bigger and more important ways. This season only covered a small bit of the final arc, but my hype levels for the rest of the Silver Soul arc are only getting higher.
I feel like my opinion on Violet Evergarden has been made pretty clear in my posts. But regardless I think Violet Evergarden is another strong entry in Kyoani’s already incredibly strong catalog of anime. I’m a sucker for the power of words stories, so I was bound to like this. But Violet’s journey of learning to feel was one that I thoroughly enjoyed.
A Place Further Than The Universe:
A Place Further Than The Universe was something that I entirely expected to be about being in Antarctica and how rough that is, but what I was treated to was a great drama and a thoroughly fun and emotional journey of 4 friends. There is not a single character that I disliked with a lot of highlights. The dynamic between the main 4 girls was one that truly felt like a friendship, one that withstood hardships and made them all better people because of it. I also wrote about it more than once, so I’ll let the pieces speak for themselves.
I enjoyed every second of Yuru Camp and that is not an exaggeration. I have never been camping before, but I want to after watching Yuru Camp. The one true highlight of the series was Rin and Nadeshiko being best friends and camping buddies. Every time they camped together my heart reached a new degree of warmth it had never felt before. Rin is also my fashion goals, while also being kind of like me personality-wise so there was no way I wasn’t going to love her. Just look at how comfy and happy she looks in the picture.
After the Rain:
After The Rain was a very melancholic experience and I mean that in the best way possible. Every episode we were treated with rain both literally and metaphorically. Kondo and Tachibana reigniting their prior passions was a satisfying and quite inspiring journey. It made me feel quite melancholic and made me think a lot about myself and what I want to try to do with myself. From a series I was initially skeptical of, it blew my expectations out of the water for a story that is quite unique while also offering a strong emotional journey.
Little kids are scary, but also very fun to watch. Mitsuboshi Colors didn’t do anything that really made me think it was amazing, but it was consistently a fun time. Except when Kotoha was being bullied because I will not allow that in this establishment. I would gladly take more Mitsuboshi Colors, but in a season with Yuru Camp, it was hard to compete with slice of life.
Pop Team Epic:
A meme show being good and incredibly funny was not something I expected, but something I am very glad I experienced. Pop Team Epic was such an interesting ride full of just about anything. My favorite bits were Bob Team Epic Hellshake Yano edition, Let’s Pop Together, the narrated horror movie, and Kirei being Pipimi. I want more Pop Team Epic in my life because I want some to have more memes with my favorite voice actors. I also just want to see how Hoshiiro Girldrop ends.
Fate/Extra Last Encore:
I really like the Fate series, so I couldn’t hate this series. It had cool servants and looked nice. But the barrier of entry for this series is miles high. Being someone who hasn’t played through Fate/Extra, this series barely made surface level sense. And the fact that it has a few episodes left that aren’t out yet. But based on the TV run, this was a barely comprehensible series that I stayed for because it looked good and I like Nero.
Ancient Magus Bride:
Ancient Magus Bride fell off hard for me in the second half, delivering one of my least favorite openings of all time and just being a lot less interesting than the first half. It had peaks of good, but I feel that they used Chise going outside to do nothing and somehow ending up in a bad situation too much. I did appreciate the whole bit where Chise runs away from Elias because he tries to kill Stella to save him, that was a good bit. But the rest just felt like it had already been done and I was tired of it. It was still a fine show, but it needed to spice things up to be better.
3-Gatsu no Lion:
3-Gatsu No Lion is one of my favorite pieces of media ever and Shaft has been doing a phenomenal job adapting it. Every episode was an emotional journey, some sad and some happy. This season especially had some of the series strongest arcs in the bullying and the Shimada vs. Yanagihara arc. Both were both visually and narratively some of the strongest in the series. They did what 3-Gatsu does best, feeling genuinely emotional. None of the emotions in 3-Gatsu feel forced and the way people deal with them feels human. I am really hoping season 3 gets announced soon as that should hold my favorite arc in the entire series as of right now.
B: The Beginning:
I’ve already said all I want to about B: The Beginning here.
ReLife Kanketsu-hen skipped a lot and by doing so flopped hard for me. I still liked it because I like ReLife, but it butchered the one episode it needed to be a 10/10. I don’t know why they chose to skip a good chunk of the story, but they needed to adapt more. And just give the last episode 5-10 more minutes so I can get animated closure to ReLife, what I currently have animated is not a good version of the ending of ReLife.
Ranking(Tiered Because I’d have like 4 number 1’s otherwise):
The Best: Yuru Camp(10/10), A Place Further Than The Universe(10/10), Gintama Silver Soul Arc Part 1(10/10), After the Rain(10/10), 3-Gatsu No Lion Season 2(10/10), Violet Evergarden(10/10)
Great: Pop Team Epic(9/10), Mitsuboshi Colors(8/10)
Passable: Ancient Magus Bride(7/10), B: The Beginning(7/10), ReLife Kanketsu-hen(7/10), Fate/Extra Last Encore(6/10)
Spring season looks to be pretty stacked too, so look forward to seeing how that season goes for me.