The summer season has finally started, and with the new season come some changes to the weekly round-up. First and foremost, there will be more shows in the round up than ever before. This season tends had lots of stuff that I was interested in watching, as well as new seasons of old personal favorites, along with some shows from the spring season that are still coming along. I have never before found myself watching so many shows that were currently airing, and it is possible there may be even more coming to the round up. On another side note, I am now starting the week on Sundays and ending it on Saturdays, in order to adjust for the massive amount of Sunday releases this season, and juggling the time to watch them all.
This week Chiyuri finally puts her foot down and decides it is time to join Taku and Haru in this so-called “Brain Burst” thing she has heard so much about. The crew is shocked to discover that Chiyuri’s Brain Burst avatar is a rare find, a healer class, the third one to appear in the entire history of the game. It also seems that healer class characters are so rare factions have gone to war in order to recruit them. Not only do Haru and Taku have to deal with keeping Chiyuri safe, but they also wind up being charged with protecting their territory as Black Lotus will have to leave for an upcoming trip. Oh, and a mysterious new student appears at school.
This week the girls learn about another aspect of idol life: gravure photography/obligatory swimsuit episodes. Amidst the swimsuits, fanservice, and some very interesting side effects from jellyfish stings, Yuko continues to investigate some of the darker secrets involving the group. It would seem there is a reason no one has been a “center nova” of the group for a few generations…
Here is one of the first new shows that popped up for the summer season. Arcana Famiglia is about an organization called the Famiglia that protects an island nation from crime and other threats. The Famiglia is kind of like an anime version of the mafia, but they are good guys that fight with guns, swords, and magic. Each member of the Famiglia has made a contract with a special card that grants them a unique ability. This episode started off with a nice dose of action along with some world-building, and it looks like this could shape up to be a very entertaining show.
For those new to Dog Days, this show about an athletic boy that is summoned to the magical land of the Flonyard, a place where kingdoms wage competitive “wars” where citizens fight rival kingdoms with weapons and sorcery for money and glory. Don’t go thinking this is some kind of blood-and-guts medieval gore-fest like Berserk, the battles fought are more of a wargame where no one is really hurt, the worst that can happen is a temporary transformation into a “beast-ball.” Think of this as a super cute version of the TV show “Ninja Warrior”, but with large scale battles and magic. Things do get serious from time to time however as there are demons that roam the land that certainly mean business. The premise of this show may seem silly, but there is tons of fun to be had here- this show has everything from awesome fights to the typical anime fare of moe girls delivering heart-attack inducing levels of cuteness.
This episode kicks off with Cinque being summoned back to the Flonyard as he promised at the end of the first season, this time with his childhood friend Becky at his side. This time around the Galette Lion Army has decided to summon a hero of their own- Cinque’s rival Nanami, the girl that defeated him in the Iron Athletics (Think Ninja Warrior) game show back home. It also seems another faction is seeking a hero to join the war as well…
This show is based on a 2010 adult visual novel game for the PC. This story takes place in a somewhat futuristic setting at a large school with thousands of students. The school has a wide variety of clubs, but the new person running for student council president has plans to eliminate clubs deemed to be “useless.” A plucky group of students from the “food research club” have decided to fight for their right to exist by sending one of their own to campaign for student council president. Early in this episode, however, it is shown that the politics of this school are much more cutthroat and dangerous than anyone could imagine! This show looks like it is going to bring slice of life antics with political intrigue and a dash of dark conspiracy on the side.
Shougo is about to inherit his father’s corporation, but as a condition of the inheritance he must find a bride before he graduates high school, and he is placed in an academy full of girls to find one. Now the girls are flocking right to him, but there is one problem- a girl claiming to be his sister, separated at birth, is also attending this academy, and she is keeping her identity hidden. Now Shougo not only has to figure out what girl is right for him, but he also has to make sure she isn’t his sister. This is a typical harem/ecchi/comedy with the imouto (sister) thing tossed in for a twist. Is this nothing but another shameless, perverse comedy? Yup. Am I going to watch this show and add it to the weekly round-up? You damn right I am. Now if only I could figure out why I have that craving for cream puffs lately…
This is the second season of last year’s surprise hit, Horizon. If you are not familiar with Horizon, it is a crazy mix of sci-fi, comedy, action, politics, and tons of fanservice. This is a show that many will either love or hate, but if you can dig it, it’s one hell of a ride. This season picks up right where things left off the first time, with Tori leading everyone on their quest to gather the Divine Armaments from around the world. This show opens up at the usual frantic pace of action and storytelling, with plenty of laughs on the side.
This show is a spinoff from a hugely popular sci-fi visual novel game, Muv-Luv Alternative. This story takes place on a version of Earth that has been at war with an alien race known as BETA since the 1950’s. The BETA serves no other purpose other than the annihilation of mankind, and the war has become so brutal that even students are asked to fight in the war. This show has generated a lot of hype and has a lot to offer, since it comes from a beloved franchise, and promises lots of mecha combat and girls in sexy pilot suits. Unfortunately this show seems to suffer from a very low budget, which can be seen by the poor coloring and shadowing throughout the episode. Despite these flaws, I’m going to give this show a chance, since I’m a sucker for sci-fi and mecha, not to mention the fact that it is based off of legendary source material.
And so it’s another week of test chamber adventures. This episode puts the spotlight on the oldest of the astronaut candidates, a former rocket designer in his 50’s. As he deals with memories of his family falling apart as he chased his dreams, more bad fortune comes his way as another of the candidates steps on his glasses. This simple event has caused the tension to rise for all of the candidates, with guilt and contempt simmering amongst the group. Things are certainly getting interesting, and the JAXA staff in charge of the test almost seems to be enjoying this turn of events.
SAO is one of the most highly anticipated shows of this season, and for good reason. SAO is based on a light novel series that has been running for over 10 years. In the year 2022, a VR gaming system called “Nervegear” has yet to have a big hit game, until an MMO called Sword Art Online released the first 10,000 copies. Things seem to be going well for everyone until the creator of the game shows up with some bad news. Without getting into great detail, it seems there are only two ways to end the game- complete all 100 levels and escape, or die. It seems the creator tweaked the software to turn the Nervegear console into a deathtrap that will fry the brain of any player that dies in the game, or if someone from the outside tries to remove the console. So far this show looks like it will be a better version of the popular .Hack franchise from years ago. (It should be noted that the SAO light novels have been around before .Hack was a thing, just in case anyone thinks this show was stealing some ideas…)
This is yet another fan-anticipated sequel that popped up this season. Yuru Yuri is a slice of life/comedy show featuring a group of girls that have formed the amusement club, a school club about, well, amusement. With the phrase “yuri” in the title, it should be noted that most of the girls in this show have crushes on each other, but that is not necessarily the focus of this show, as it tends to be part of the comedy. This show is all about being a goofy, light-hearted comedy, and it does so exceedingly well. Like any of the sequel series from this season, you will be lost if you did not watch the first season, so if you are interested you should check it out. In this episode Akari finally gets the recognition she deserves… or does she?