Make no mistake, this is a low-quality, hastily written article in which I will spill my awful tastes all over your web browsers and steal ideas and information from other reputable blogs.
As usual, the Fall season tends to be packed with different shows and considering that has been one of the most hotly awaited seasons in recent memory, this is probably a good thing. The hype machine must have been up late at night pumping liters adrenaline into the bloodstreams of trending anime fans, with big visual novel names like Key’s Little Busters! and 5pb’s ROBOTIC;NOTES almost guaranteed to get a spot on MAL’s Top Anime list, for better or for worse. Picking up the Summer 2012 sequel train, this season also continues the trend of continuing continuations, with Jormungand, To-Love-Ru, and Hayate all getting the sequel treatment for Fall. And of course, rounding off the list are the always ambiguous anime originals, PSYCHO-PASS and K, which have been almost completely shrouded in utmost secrecy.
While I always prefer to keep my expectations low when going into any new season, the sheer variety and absurd total of new shows has plenty to keep me interested. Also, while I plan on keeping up with as many shows as I can with possible, I’m also using this season as an opportunity to watch some much awaited classics which I have yet to catch up on, namely ARIA, Monster, and Dennou Coil. With that being said, my anime viewing window is quite small since my current schedule’s rather packed, so I’ll probably find myself falling behind on most currently airing shows. Fortunately, I’m a manly ass man who doesn’t drop any shows he starts no matter how painful they get, so I assure you that I’ll catch up on them eventually!
Though I could probably extend this into an extremely large season preview extending to all of the shows airing this season, I’ve got real people shit to do so I’ll keep it brief. I always find it better to just enjoy these sort of things, so this time I’m completely throwing away any semblance of professionalism and just covering the shows I’m interested while having some fun on the side. Besides, there are far, far better people at doing this, namely Random Curiosity and The Cart Driver, who’ve really got their shit down when it comes to these sort of things. With that in mind, I’d rather just do a quick skim over what I’m interested in, say what you may or may not see an article on in the near future, and give my expectations for the shows at large.
Shows I’m watching (aka mostly my seasonal dose of bishounen fetish-fulfillment)
Tonari no Kaibutsu – Well, it’s shoujo shit and I do tend to really like shoujo shit. Romantic comedies are right up my alley, so it’s rather hard to imagine that I won’t be looking forward to this each week. Although I’m far from ready to call this as the definitive show of the season, the premise is interesting and the characters are quite amicable, easily making this my most anticipated anime of Fall 2012 (though I seriously doubt that it’ll be the best). My biggest fear going into this is that it’ll become a will-they-won’t-they Ross and Rachel gimmick, but I’m eagerly awaiting the first episode.
- Baseless Assumptions: Similar to many other anime rom-coms, the ending will accomplish little to nothing and leave gaps in the relationship of the two leads, but I’ll eat it up anyways on account of being a giant sap.
PSYCHO-PASS – I won’t lie, I have problems with Urobochi Gen’s writing. While significant effort is always given to fleshing out his characters, they have an odd tendency to be hard to resonate or identify with. Regardless, Urobochi’s dialogue has always managed to strike a chord with me; there’s some odd sort of magic to his usually sadistic pen. And considering that this is an all-original anime, I’ll definitely be watching.
- Baseless Assumptions: Like Fate/Zero, the characters will spend the entirety of the first episode walking in circles around a certain object or person while explaining important plot details to the audience.
Shin Sekai Yori – The sci-fi/supernatural genre is usually a tough sell for me, but considering that the source material won the Nihon SF Taishō Award in 2008, I’d say that there’s a pretty good chance that I’ll enjoy it. The first episode has already aired and word is there’s a religious spin on the series, something which always grabs at my attention. A-1 Studios also tends to do some very good work animation-wise, provided that they have the necessary funding, as seen with THE IDOLM@STER, which had off the charts production values, especially during the dance sequences.
- Baseless Assumptions: I got nothing. I hope it’s good.
Magi – Okay, this could either be a complete disaster or an enormous success depending on how the show is handled, but I’m ready to take dive anyways. I’m an uncultured pleb, so I wouldn’t know anything specific to the Arabian Nights universe, but hey, that Disney movie Aladdin was on twice last night and that made me want to watch this. Yeah, really. While the presence of Yoshino Hiroyuki does worry me, the story also allows for some very interesting themes, notably fate, slavery, and greed. I’ll be sure to check this out.
- Baseless Assumptions: Yuki Kaji’s character will go through a bitchy emo phase and then proceeds to have his arm cut off.
Robotic;Notes – While the overall quality is still up in the air, let’s face it: there’s no way in hell that this isn’t going to be popular. It’s written by 5pb, who’s fresh off the success train with the excellent Steins;Gate, animated by Production I.G., and it also managed to get 22 episodes on the always acclaimed noitaminA time slot. Although recent trailers have been a bit off-putting due to the inherent silliness of the premise, I’m always down to watch an I.G. flick, even if just for the spectacular visuals. And since I’m a trendy bastard, I can’t see myself passing up on a show like this. Besides, the story happens to be set in the Stein’s;Gate universe, so it can’t possibly be that bad. Right?
- Baseless Assumptions: 5pb fans and various anime blogs go absolutely insane after seeing a certain mad scientist make a cameo appearance during the first cour.
JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure – Well, I’ve been promised that it’s about hulking, absurdly manly ass musclemen beating the shit out of each other with their glorious biceps and pectoral muscles and there sure as hell ain’t nothing wrong with that.
- Baseless Assumptions: More details will go into the character’s muscles than their actual personalities.
Shows I might be watching, but will likely end up on-hold due to time constraints
Chuunibyou Demo Koi ga Shitai! – With a very well-regarded staff, including veteran director Ishihara Tatsuya, backing the story, Chuunibyou has a pretty good shot at adding to Kyoto Animation’s reputation as the go-to rom-com guys. While the premise should allow for plenty of interesting events to happen, I seriously doubt that I’m the only one looking forward to KyoAni bringing their animation talents to the battle scenes. Even if the story manages to fall flat, I’ll probably manage to stick around for a taste of the visuals.
- Baseless Assumptions: Key fans bitch at Kyoto Animation regardless of how it turns out.
Aikatsu! – After listening to kevo and Scamp beef it out during one of JoeAnimated’s podcasts, I feel an odd, contractual obligation to see how this one turns out. My gut tells me that this won’t be too bad, but I’ll hardly be disappointed if it doesn’t impress me.
- Baseless Assumptions: After two months of resisting, kevo admits that he loves it and apologizes.
Hayate no Gotoku! Can’t Take My Eyes Off You – While it sure sounds sketchy that the new Hayate season is going to be made up entirely of Kenjiro Hata’s unused manga ideas, I can’t imagine this going poorly under his wing. The Hayate no Gotoku manga, despite going on for several years now, is consistently on the mark when it comes to laughs. While Manglobe’s film adaptation failed to impress me, Hata’s involvement is enough to spark my interest into the new anime adaption.
- Baseless Assumptions: The new anime showcases even more of Hayate’s love interests, even though every person on the planet already knows that Hinagiku completely annihilates the competition.
Jormungand: Perfect Order – Well, it’s… Jormungand. While I wasn’t nearly as tantalized by the first season as some were, watching loco Koko’s merry men blast holes into other nut jobs is enough to keep around for more.
- Baseless Assumptions: More children with inexplicably large six packs appear in the latter half.
Little Busters! – Oh dear, well if it isn’t Japan’s very own version of LeBron leaves Cleveland. If you watch anime and also happen to live on planet Earth, you’ve probably heard about the J.C. Staff/Little Busters! kerfuffle during the early Spring. Though I’m not entirely sold on Maeda Jun’s writing due to his incredibly sloppy job with Angel Beats!, I admit that he often churns out something pretty entertaining every once in a while. However, it has been said before that Little Busters! is far from the classic Key nakige which we’ve come to expect and with a rather sizable number of my peers denouncing the novel, I’m more inclined to agree. It’s only fitting that when Key takes a different direction with their VN’s, a new studio comes to take over the adaptation. Regardless, only one thing is for certain when it comes to this project: if the writing does in fact turn out to be the weakest component of Little Busters!, Key fans are dead set on destroying J.C. Staff instead of Maeda.
- Not-So Baseless Assumption: Deus ex Machina ending involving some supernatural fluff which will conveniently tie loose ends and ensure a happy future for the main characters. I mean come on, there’s no way in hell that they won’t do this. It’s a Key tradition.
K – The fact that one of the characters is named Adolf Weissman (which is almost like being named Adolf the White Guy) is sadly enough to keep me interested. Yeah, he’s totally not going to be one of the bad guys, nope, no way.
- Baseless Assumptions: The show offers some interesting, idealistic relationships between the Red and Blue Clans only to get completely trivialized by real gang-related violence between the infamous Los Angeles Crips and Bloods. Both L.A. based gangs will then decide to put away their differences and work together for the first time in history in order to file a class action lawsuit against the producers of K, bringing peace to the streets Southern California once more.
To Love-Ru – Darkness/Imouto anime with an absurdly long name – Inevitable erections forthcoming.