Spring 2008 Preview: Once you get in the habit of doing these things, you have to keep it up

chibi-karura-blog.pngPointless or not, I’m too opinionated not to post a spring preview, so her you go- Karura’s latest overture to conventionality. Once again, I’ve been too lazy to consider OVAs.

Gag Manga Biyori 3
I’m still waiting for Gag Manga Biyori 2 to be subbed in its entirety, but this offbeat and random comedy series has always been a fun diversion, and hopefully it will continue to be so.

Chi’s Sweet Home
I just had to mention this one because it’s about a lost kitten who finds a new home- it will probably get totally ignored by the anime viewing world, but the artwork is cute. Should I watch it just because I’m a cat lover? Perhaps.

Nijuu-Mensou no Musume
Also known as Chiko, Heiress of the Phantom Thief, this series is, unsurprisingly, about a girl who is the spiritual successor of a notorious phantom thief. I quite like her character design, but until someone reports otherwise, this seems like it will be a rather generic bronze-tier outing.

To Love-Ru
This is one those series that you automatically expect to have an anime adaptation already, but as it turns out, it’s only just about to get one. The series takes on the generic “alien girl lands in boy’s bathtub, leading to a series of events that ends up with him unwillingly getting engaged to her” story, presumably complete with the clichés that have been around since the days of Urusei Yatsura. Unless someone tells me that it’s good to parody, I don’t plan to waste my life on this one.

Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D
Yes, it’s the one you’ve all been waiting for- a subpar spin-off of a card game anime, complete with new characters and a new way of playing cards- via motorcycle. I’m not sure I quite understand how that works, but this is going to be so splendidly awful that I almost feel like trying it- almost, but not quite. The insanely spiky haired character designs also remain oddly appealing in a perverse fashion.

Kyou Kara Maoh! season three
For better or worse, Kyou Kara Maoh seems to be one of those things that go on forever, and now it has thirty-nine more episodes to come. Presumably, if you’ve seen seasons one and two and still have an appetite for more, you’ll want to watch this, but for everyone else it’s just something else to ignore.

Allison to Lillia
What happens when you take two light novel series about girls named Allison and Lillia- and put them together to form one anime? The answer, of course, is Allison to Lillia, a series about both of their adventures. Although I know very little about it, it does give off a positive Last Exile vibe, and the fact that the original material was written by the author who brought us Kino’s Journey is a big plus point in its favour. I’ll be keeping my eye out for this one.

Kure-nai
On the surface, this sounds like another potentially interesting episodic light novel based series, this time about a mediator who negotiates squabbles between people. Unfortunately, there also seems to be a proliferation of seven year old characters, which makes me worried that it will either be a loli-fest or about as deep as Chokotto Sister.

xxxHOLiC: Kei
Much as I enjoy the xxxHOLiC manga (even though I haven’t bothered to read any new chapters in months), the anime was incredibly dull and poorly animated, leaving me unenthusiastic about a new season. Should I watch it for completeness? Perhaps, but then I remember the struggle of staying awake as season one progressed, and I think that I should just leave well alone.

Kanokon
Typical high school student meets a girl who is actually a fox goddess and builds up a harem with her and supporting characters- this sounds like Inukami for 2008, only probably inferior because it’s been done before. I may watch it once it’s finished airing, but it’s probably not something I’ll keep up with on a weekly basis.

Amatsuki
Boy who hates history gets caught in a historical simulation VR game- seems like a fairly standard setup that will produce a solid but not outstanding result. I may or may not watch, depending on early impressions and time available.

Druaga no To: the Aegis of Uruk
“Thus begins the story of a warrior named Gil who, finding companions along the way, embarks on a quest for the fabled Blue Crystal Rod”- is it me, or does this sound like yet another generic fantasy waiting to happen? And, given that it’s being animated by Gonzo, it seems unlikely to contain much originality or innovation.

Itazura na Kiss
Another romance series; this time about an ice-cold model student and the girl who relentlessly pursues him; it would sound like an immediate throwaway, except for apparently the story continues after they get married. For that reason, I may give it a go, in the hopes that it will at least be reminiscent of the greatness of Kare Kano.

Blassreiter: genetic
When I was reading the synopsis for this series, I thought like it sounded like the worthy successor to Persona and Mushi-Uta, containing as it does zombies and people with special powers. Then I saw that not only is it a Gonzo production, but that said people are meant to participate in a battle royale, and somehow all the potential just melted away.

Zettai Karen Children
Although the title draws me to this series (simply because it reminds me of Zettai Shounen), I feel I must resist, since it seems to centre on three young girls with ESP who are hired by the Japanese government. I sense magical girl, and whilst that doesn’t necessarily make it bad, I can’t say this particular setup is very appealing.

Kamen no Maid Guy
A masked burly maid guy- I don’t know whether to laugh or run away in fear. It will probably be amusing in a “light on the brain” fashion, but it hardly seems like something to clear a space in a packed schedule for.

Kyouran Kazoku Nikki
Forget Kamisama Kazoku and its family of gods, this series has a makeshift ‘family’ of beings with the potential power to destroy the world, including, for some reason, a lion and a jellyfish. It could be fun, but it could also be juvenile, so I’m remaining on the fence until it actually airs.

Da Capo II Second Season
Another one I’m just reporting in case anyone doesn’t know of its existence- as I haven’t watched season one, I won’t be seeing this any time soon.

Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion R2
I can feel the Code Geass fanboys gathering around already (Hanners, are you reading this?), but since I didn’t complete season one, I won’t be picking up this one either. And what’s this I hear about Lelouch’s previously unmentioned brother showing up?

Neo Angelique Abyss
Didn’t we already have two Angelique TV series? Weren’t they more than enough? Somehow, however, another series with a new set of bishies has made it into existence, although if it’s as lacking in plot as its predecessors, it can be happily forgotten.

Wagaya no Oinari-sama
With Spice and Wolf having concluded, I need another worthy series with a furry lead, and so what better than one with an unsealed fox god who can take the form of either a man or a beautiful woman? As it’s light novel based, I’m getting good vibes already.

Special A
No, this isn’t a new type of cereal or vitamin supplement; instead, the Special A is an elite group of students who get such good grades that they don’t even have to attend classes. Nonetheless, our main character does go to classes, because her goal is, unsurprisingly, to beat the male lead. It sounds like a bit of a mishmash of other shoujo series, with little merit to watching it.

Soul Eater
Shinigami are always a popular subject, but here we have a slightly different spin on the topic, as weapon technicians try to turn their zanpakuto human weapons into proper Death Scythes by collecting the souls of evil people. Will it be an interesting take on a tried-and-true concept, or is it just the latest shounen series to star shinigami? Only time will tell.

Nabari no Ou
I almost wish that this was a spin-off of Shion no Ou, but instead it’s about a boy with destined powers and the two ninja clans who end up fighting over him. The latter sounds disturbingly similar to Basilisk (especially as the Iga clan shows up in both series), but I’m still undecided as to whether to try this.

Vampire Knight
I’ve long thought about reading the manga for this bishie vampire series, but all signs pointed to it being generally shallow and more about looks than story. I’m still oddly drawn to the series, but I can’t help feeling I should start with the manga rather than going to the anime- simply because it reminds me a little of the underwhelming Zombie-Loan.

Monochrome Factor
Having ruled out one possible Mushi-Uta/Persona successor, could this series be the destined heir instead? This time around, we have a high school student who is told he must acquire destined powers and use them to restore the balance between the human and shadow worlds- to be honest, it sounds pretty generic, but there could be a smidgen of potential hidden in there somewhere.

Crystal Blaze
A city with secrets, an ex-policeman turned detective, a woman with no memories- do they get these setups from a standard book of storylines? Nonetheless, this could be the Heat Guy J of 2008, so if it isn’t too unbearably MANLY and cyberpunk, it might actually be a solid outing.

Real Drive
I’m a sucker for series that promise to blend reality with the virtual world, especially when this one is very similar to a story idea I had several years ago (I must write that story!). Having been instantly drawn to the promo artwork, I know I must pursue this series, so my only hope is that it delivers on its potential instead of turning out to be unbearably cryptic and pretentious.

Kaiba
It may have ‘cutesy’ artwork and sound like another Yu-Gi-Oh spin-off, but again the idea of digitising memories draws me to this series like a moth to a flame. It may well be an offbeat classic, but of course there is always the chance that it’s the one that everyone wants to be an offbeat classic but isn’t actually very good. Still, I’m staying optimistic for now.

Toshokan Sensou
When the government starts getting heavy-handed with the regulation of information, who can you count on to save the day? As it turns out, the answer is the book soldiers of the local library, which is an original premise if not one that seems to hold much long-term story appeal. It could be the spiritual successor to Read or Die, but I’m going to keep my expectations reined in.

Golgo 13
Didn’t this series already have an OVA or something? Anyway, it now moves into TV series territory, with the titular Golgo 13 apparently being a womanising top assassin, who is most likely a less suave James Bond. It looks a bit too MANLY for me, although I’m not ruling it out entirely.

3 thoughts on “Spring 2008 Preview: Once you get in the habit of doing these things, you have to keep it up

  1. Haha… Yes, I am reading, and yes, I’m a self-confessed Code Geass fanboy. However, I am mortified at the whole ‘previously never spoken of or seen brother’ addition to the second season – Will script writers never learn that this kind of stupid attempt at plot enhancement always ends up being… well, stupid?

  2. I always thought that Rollo was Nunnaly, since they look like each other and in the new trailers they are never shown together…

    Btw, apart from ‘Kamen no Maid Guy’, ‘Special A’, and ‘Nijuu-Mensou no Musume’ it seems a rather dull season.

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