Story so far: Our protagonist’s future self sends his past self a girl and he even time traveled to the future.
Episodes seen as of the writing: 1/12
One of my favorite plot device is time traveling and if done right would leave a very deep impression on the viewers (specially now that they’ve mixed it with mecha). In the pilot episode of Buddy Complex, it seems like this series is going in the right direction. I think there were promising/possible foreshadowing that really made me want to watch the next episode. If the writers of this series are good, they’ll be able to justify what they’ve shown in this episode and will make its viewers go: “Ahhhh so this is why this is (insert name)’s reaction” or “So this is what happened”. It’ll be really awesome if I would re-watch this series I would get a different reaction/feels. So far, the time traveling revelation gave more questions than answers: “Why did Hina disappeared half way?”, “Why did Aoba woke up in a machine different from the one he rode on?”, “Why did that crazy guy want to kill Aoba?”, “Base from the OP sequence, why does it seems like Hina would become Aoba’s enemy?”. Holy sheez, I want to find out the answer to those questions.
To tell you guys the truth, my logical mind says that the opening act was very cliché but the emotional side says otherwise cause I find the Hina x Aoba relationship very natural and I find myself rooting for them. I just hope that this series won’t forget to tackle the romance and time traveling side of the story as the first arc would seem to focus on the meeting with Dio and the introduction of the future world. Btw I’m looking forward to that Dio Coupling thing (I think I smell yaoi in here lol) cause that might be one badass mecha fight special move.
Potential Meter: 75%
Nobunaga the Fool
Story so far: Oda Nobunaga piloting a robot that only the ‘Saviour King’ can operate and a woman, Joan Kaguya d’Arc, came from the West Star who saw her future (her burning at the stake) and the future destruction of the West Star that lead her towards the East Star to seek her destiny.
Episode seen as of the writing: 3/24
So far it have been about the build up so nothing much exciting happened. Sure the battles were certainly a great watch but we’re still in the dark why Joan and Leonardo went to the East star and why did even Leonardo lend the robot to Oda Nobunaga? What’s his plan? What would be really interesting to watch is how would the famous historical figures interact in this series also how their own history/story (in our world) or even ideals would play in this series. I’m mostly familiar with the West Star’s historical figures, the likes of Joan d’Arc, Leonardo daVinci, King Arthur, Magellan, Julius Ceasar etc. but the story of the famous figures in the Sengoku era, oh gosh I need to research on it because I might not fully enjoy this series if I continue to be ignorant about it. So far without that knowledge I could a bit discern the personality of famous Sengoku figures: Oda Nobunaga so far seems like a person who doesn’t leave his fate to destiny, he uses his own power to achieve what he wants, Joan d’Arc has a personality that is opposite of Nobunaga, she believes that her destiny have already been determined and she left everything up to God’s hands. Really, really interesting how can these two point of views affect the story of this series and how will the romance between this two develop. I got the feeling that Joan would sacrifice herself eventually for the unification of Japan/East Star just like how the Joan of Arc of the real world did for her beloved country. The pacing of the story sure taking it’s time but I’m willing to wait ‘cause I know it’ll definitely pick up its pace as this is a 24 episode anime, they sure have enough time to answers the questions the viewers have been asking.
Regarding the pacing of an episode, sometimes I get this feeling that it keeps on jumping from one scene to another without any proper transition. I don’t know if there’s suppose to be a commercial break or what but there are certain scenes that seems to halt the continuity of an episode.
Btw, I love the ED song "AXIS" by STEREO DIVE FOUNDATION which is so darn catchy and gets me all pumped up for the next episode but the several artworks in the ED sequence was already been used in the 1st episode, still it has a nice feel to as it felt modern and yet old at the same time. The OP song "FOOL THE WORLD" by Minori Chihara certainly fits the atmosphere of the series but I’m not particularly fond of it. The OP sequence was was awesome ‘cause it seems to feature what to expect from the series. Just like in history seems like Mitsuhide would betray Nobunaga and OMG maybe even Joan/Ranmaru would too. Oh and thank God the mechas in this series doesn’t use beam guns or laser weapons, they use sword instead making the mecha action look so badass.
Potential Meter: 70%
Witch Craft Works
Story so far: The main character is being repeatedly saved by a sexy, pretty, stoic and badass girl.
Episode seen as of the writing: 3/12
Yes, the premise have already been done several times but gosh the direction was actually well done that I found myself laughing so much on the ridiculousness of it all. Mecha rabbits wrecking havoc and instead of damsel in distress it’s the other way around! So in Witch Craft Work’s world, there are two types of witches, Tower witches that uses their powers for evil purposes and Workshop witches that establishes workshop or studios in every major cities to monitor and keep in check other witches who might use their powers for evil purposes. Unfortunately for our male lead, the Tower witches are after him (which is after the so called ‘White Stuff’ within him) so he is being repeatedly saved by Kagari. Eventually, he doesn’t want to become a burden anymore so he asked Kagari to make him into an apprentice and also study magic.
This series is my guilty pleasure this winter. It have its problems but I’m still enjoying it a lot as this badass girl Kagari keeps on doing ‘Kakoi’ (cool) things that I found myself falling in love www. There’s really something admirable with girls who have this desire to protect someone (Rei from Eva and Homura from Madoka Magica). I’d also would love to see the romance between Kagari and Takamiya develop and also what is this ‘White Stuff’ that Takamiya has in him oh I almost forgot, what is this contract that binds Kagari and Takamiya. Man, so many things to look forward in this series.
Potential Meter: 70%
Story so far: The lead girl is having an ‘out of the body experience’ when she saved a homeless and unemployed god.
Episodes seen as of the writing: 2/12
Everything about Noragami screams stylish: the direction, the animation and the BGM making everything look badass. So far this series have been surpassing my expectations cause actually, I found the manga really boring and stopped reading halfway through the translated chapters. What really amazed me is how director-san manage such a very interesting way of building the world of Noragami, it makes its viewers ask the ‘What if?’ question and ponder on what’s to come on the story and and even ‘What if I could live in that world?’. The director sure know how to make things interesting by slowly building the world, the circumstances and of course the characters by using creative animation direction oh and let’s not forget the nicely choreographed fight scenes. Ah I almost forgot, thank God the jokes in this series are actually funny.
The BGM is really badass and whenever it was played it evokes the right emotions and complements what is on screen. Oh my I guess I would be looking forward to the OST release of this series. I love the ED song "Heart Realize (ハートリアライズ)" by Tia but it’s not supercell’s best song and without the lyrics, it failed to captivate me. The OP song "Goya no Machiawase (午夜の待ち合わせ)" by Hello Sleepwalkers and the animation that accompanies it sure screams badass and I love it.
Potential Meter: 85%
Story so far: The guy and the girl are forced in a relationship they don’t want to appease their yakuza and gangster families but the guy likes another girl.
Episodes seen as of the writing: 2/12
I can’t believe SHAFT’s style actually fit this series, I can’t believe that SHAFT’s animation this time doesn’t look lazy and finally, I also can’t believe SHAFT actually finished an OP sequence on time. Here I thought SHAFT is done with the shock of Madoka Magica Rebellion but no, they never failed to surprise me. I admit that the premise is rather cliché with the forced relationship and love triangle, but when they add the feud between gangsters and yakuza and a well executed romance, well acted characters and mysteries that hook you to the story…well, I think it’s very hard to stay away from this series. So far, I’m loving the main couple mainly because of their hilarious banter. I wonder who will Raku choose in the end Chitoge or Onodera? How will his feeling for Chitoge develop? For now I’m rooting for Raku x Chitoge but if they would reveal the story if Onodera, my opinion might change. Btw the OP song "CLICK" by ClariS is so damn catchy (well, I’m biased cause I’m a huge fan of ClariS) and the ED song (sorry I don’t know the title nor the one who sang it) is very cute. Damn it SHAFT you really do know your fans, well I want to see sexy illustrations of Chitoge and Onodera and damn they gave it us with their OP and ED sequence and also with the close up shots from the episode itself. That is why I love you SHAFT even though you kept on SHAFTING us www. Anyway this is my favorite series this season cause it got everything I want for a series: memorable characters, interesting premise, a romance and a comedy that will either keep me smiling or laughing the entire episode.
Potential Meter: 85%
Inari Konkon Koi Iroha
Story so far: Our heroine has a crush on her classmate, but cannot express her feelings. One day, as thanks for helping a fox pup, the deity Ukanomitama-no-kami grants her the ability to change her form.
Episodes seen as of the writing: 2/10
Geeez why does one of my favorite series this season is only 10 episodes long?! Anyway, that was a pleasant surprise. I think this is one of those series that tries to send a message and in just the first two episodes and it’s message is, “You don’t have to be somebody else to be loved by someone”. This series was successful in conveying that message and gives its viewers the different feels through it’s great characterization, atmosphere set-up and the lovely BGM. The atmosphere of this series really reminds me of ARIA which is very relaxing that heals a very tired soul. I really wish this series’ atmosphere would continue like this.
I would love to delve into how Inari would get the attention of Tanbabashi specially now that she can transform but I hope they won’t solely focus on that.With the introduction of the world of the gods, seems like giving a transformation power to a kid would have it’s consequences like Inari abusing her powers. All serious stuff aside, this series has its quirks too like Uka-sama playing BL games, his familiars reading the manga Blood Lad and the chant when Inari transforms, oh lol seems like this series starting to become a magical girl show (which I don’t mind btw ww).
The OP song "Kyou ni Koiiro (今日に恋色)" by May'n is a beautiful song that fits the atmosphere of the series and watching that OP sequence it seems like this show would be a good slice if life series. The ED song "SAVED." by Maaya Sakamoto is also a beautiful song darn it, it surely touched my heart. I would definitely be looking for a copy of the OST when it comes out, the BGM tracks are simply beautiful.
I’m looking forward on how Inari would handle being a middle schooler who is in love and at the same time has a power to transform. Crap now I want to read the manga! *Must…resist…the…temptation…* (>_<”)
Potential Meter: 90%
Wizard Barristers: Benmashi Cecil
Story so far: Our protagonist is the youngest Wizard Barrister (a sort of like magician lawyer www) in history and we follow her story in defending the unlawfully condemned magic users.
Episodes seen as of the writing: 2/12
I got to commend the premise ‘cause it’s my first time seeing an anime series about lawyers, court room and magicians which I found very unique and interesting mix. In the first two episodes, we saw how the Butterfly law firm gather evidences to defend their client who was wrongly accused of being part of the robbery holdup group ‘No Face’ but in actuality, he just defended the person who was dear to him. We got a LOT of magic fight scenes in the first two episodes and damn they look so badass when doing their magic which kind of reminds me of ‘Avatar: The Legend of Aang’s’ element manipulations. They also do summoning in the series and damn it looks like they summoned a Zoids and humanoid looking mecha which adds to my overall excitement and enjoyment of my mecha loving self. I was really surprised with the animation because this was animated by ARMS for crap’s sake and WOW they really showed that they can do beautiful animation when they actually try but there are still several ecchi scenes that may not be necessary. Behind the court room, the evidence gathering and magic action, seems like Cecil has a reason why she wanted to become a Wizard Barrister and it’s to defend her mother who have been wrongly accused of a crime she didn’t do. This series also has a good potential to show the behavior of humans towards each other whether they have powers or not ‘cause so far it seems like Wud (aka Wizards) in this series are being hated by ordinary humans for their powers and the destruction they could do even though they both live in a world where they try to co-exists.
The BGM of this series reminds me of those 90s shows and it fits the style of the series (might be because of the director’s influence ‘cause he directed that famous Kite OVA). The OP song "JUSTITIA" by Lia was an ok OP song which is not that catchy but the OP sequence was kind of exciting as it seems to give us a clue on what to expect in the series. The ED song "BLUE TOPAZ" by Rui Tanabe is your generic j-pop song and ED sequence was just different shots of Cecil in different locations.
Really, really interesting mix of genre and I’m looking forward to more court room and magic action.
Potential Meter: 70%
The Pilot’s Love Song
Story so far: Our protagonist is actually the crown prince of an overthrown empire who lost everything, his life, his heritage and his family. He embarks on a journey that don’t guarantee his safe return to his current family for the sake of his revenge. Along the way, this prince met people who would teach him friendship and most of all…love.
Episode seen as of the writing: 4/12
Oh gosh with the latest episode of KoiUta (Love Song) with that surprising revelation, how wonder how would Kal-El react when he finds that out. Will he continue to seek revenge or will he choose to forgive and love? That episode really exceeded my expectations, not only did it fleshed out the characters they added a twist that could affect the love story of our main couple. I was talking with my co-bloggers at Anime Anthology and Sid told me he wanted Kal-El to go berserk with all the rage that have been piling up inside of him and I agree to that but now…oh God no Kal-El don’t hurt the person you love!
Just like I said earlier this show have been exceeding my expectations. I like how this series is character centered and it has this balance of fleshing out it’s characters without forgetting to move the plot along. As we get to know the main cast and even came to like them, they’ve thrown that unexpected twist…and damn I didn’t see that coming. Now I got to ask what is the reason behind Nina’s actions and based from the preview of episode 5 hopefully they’ll show it to us. With an amazing setting and interesting characters, I got an epic vibes from this series and it will be epic as long as the writers and director know what they’re doing and they’re doing it right. I really hope that 12 episodes would be enough to tell a great story because honestly that is very, very short of you want to expand the world of this series and move the story along.
On the animation side of things, the 3D CG of the aircrafts were amazing but the standard animation was not that impressive good thing the animation direction was actually good to make up for it that you can get a clue on what’s happening on screen with just a close up shot or simple gestures of the characters. The OP song "azurite" by petit milady is actually disappointing ‘cause it sounds like your generic j-pop song, too bad it was sung by Yuki Aoi. The ED song "Kaze ga Shitteru (風が知ってる)" by Akai Kouen is a lot better because it fits the atmosphere of the series unlike the ED song.
Ah crap I want to know what would happen if Kal-El would find out and I know it is inevitable as he will be able to find out at the end. Would revenge and hate be in his heart or will it be replaced with love? Why can’t the next episode come any faster?!
Potential Meter: 95%
The series I’ve listed above were my favorite picks this season of all the winter shows I’ve seen. Some of my Top 10 picks from my winter preview didn’t even make it on this list that just shows that some PVs, list of staff & cast and summary isn’t enough to judge how a series would turn out.
When I have the time, I’ll post a quick first impression on other shows that didn’t make it on this list but was able to watch a couple of episodes. The likes of Wake Up Girls, Nobunagun, Mahou Sensou, Chuunibyou, Hoozuki no Reitetsu, Sekai Seifuku, Pupa and Space Dandy (The only show I had my eye in yet unfortunately still wasn’t able to watch even the 1st episode).
So what’s your favorite shows this winter season? I’m very curious to know…