Winter Season 2015 First Impressions/Standings

SaeKanoWhat magnificent selection of anime series does the winter season of 2015 hold for us?

This season feels like a lot is under the radar or needs more development. I remember anime season where after the first episode I totally went wild for the second, but this time it feels more humble. Studios want to take their time to create a buildup. At least in the selection I’ve made.

We’re already some episodes in and some shows have already, or have almost, reached their half way point. So I’ll be combining/merging the first impressions and standings into one post or else both posts don’t hold much value.

Death ParadeDeath Parade is apparently an original series from MadHouse and has created quite the stir among the anime community. Death Parade revolves around a purgatory where dead souls play games to determine whether they will go to heaven or hell.

I find it quite interesting how anime tackle the topic of death and don’t necessarily explicitly depict a god-like entity that determines about life or death. While the game element isn’t really a big deal from a plot perspective, it implies that humans have their faith in their own hands and their actions and character still determine where they’ll end up in the afterlife. Strong stuff, and I’ll gladly watch where Death Parade is heading. The real goal of the series is unclear, yet it seems to show us that the choices we make, can impact us even after death.

Junketsu no MariaJunketsu no Maria tells the story of the virgin witch Maria who helps those who are in need when they put their faith in a witch.

I really like this anime and enjoying it really much. The sex-jokes and references are sometimes a bit over the top, but give the story an edge that keeps it fresh and weirdly keep the plot moving since it apparently revolves around Maria who, as a witch, hasn’t lost her virginity yet. So her companions try to find her a lovely gentleman who can perform the deed. The setting is also a nice change of pace among other series this season.

SaeKanoA boy with a dream; creating his own eroge. Luckily he has help of some of the most popular and hottest girls of his school, who seemingly have a double life, to make his dream come true.

The premise in SaeKano isn’t really unique. We’ve seen the topic at hand in anime such as Oreimo where Kirino was secretly a vivid eroge gamer, but it remains entertaining since keeping hobbies to oneself is very relatable. The execution is steady and I like how the series explores different types of personality traits within the girls. Again, nothing unique, but within the setting it really fits well. The visuals are appealing and offer a nice artistic touch to the story.

15winter3A weird being from outer space with super speed abilities threatens to blow up the earth. The earth defense forces are powerless and the only ones who are allowed to assassinate him are a group of underachieving students. They have to be creative to make this effort work.

Assassination Classroom seems a bit odd in that respect, but it’s not the first time we’ve come across an other worldly plot, so Assassination Classroom is not an exception. The visual design of the show is very appealing with bright colors and dark lines. The plot itself isn’t anything spectacular and the setting revolves mainly on the classroom and its shenanigans. The alien has taken the roll as their teacher and is also the main plot driver and comedic factor. An entertaining show so far.

The Idolmaster Cinderella GirlsA new idol group is formed under codename ‘Cinderella Project’ in this alternative setting from the Idolmaster. Fans of the series will love this new installment.

The Idolmaster¬†Cinderella Girls features a lot of girls with high pitched voices, which can also be overkill at times, who try their hardest to become idols. Apart from the three main girls this story focuses on namely, Rin, Mio and Uzuki, a lot of the other girls act like they’ve had too much Mountain Dew. This becomes distracting or even annoying at occasions. I also miss a lot of background story, which was also my complaint with the original Idolmaster. You cannot create a real bond with the characters. From an idol group perspective, the show does a good job in creating atmosphere nonetheless .

DurararaI wasn’t particularly charmed by the first season of Durarara, so I don’t really understand all the hype that has been swirling around this show. The plot seems to be all over the place and mainly focuses on an urban legend: a¬† female hot bodied- headless-dark-dressed-motorist, who lives at some young wicked professor.

The show features many different plots that apparently are all connected to each other, yet at first glance don’t feel that way. I cannot really recommend this show, maybe because I just don’t understand it. And some of you know, if it takes me too much time to unravel the story, I’m not a fan.

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