Wednesday, April 18

Spring '07 Anime First Impressions

Last Updated: 22nd April '07
A quick round up of anime I've seen so far, based on only the first episode. Screen grabs are from the first anime in the list.

*Note about ratings: Initial ratings are much less strict than my usual ones, given that I'm only going by one episode. Even if I gave an anime 10/10 on initial impressions it could recieve a final impression of less than 5.

Sola Initial Rating: 9/10 (Recommended)
Far exceeded my initial expectations for this anime, let alone first episode. I was hooked even before the guy with the sword showed up. Infact, Sola deserves it's own post. Will be following this one.

Darker than Black Initial Rating: 9/10
There's something about the overall drab feel of this anime that put me off, and I got a little bored. This is however just the first episode, and the storyline appears to be interesting. Will watch a few more before deciding.
Edit: Picking up.

Gigantic Formula Initial Rating: 7/10
A somewhat strange and yet still unoriginal idea; not that unoriginality has ever been something I've based judgements off. Very nice animation, and some nice ideas. I don't know what it is with the stupid names, but at first glance you'd prolly guess this anime involves mecha, and you'd be right. Will be watching at least a few more episodes of this one.

Heroic Age Initial Rating: 8/10
Speaking of originality, Heroic Age appears to have it in bucketfuls. Decent animation which is becoming the typical standard these days plus an intriguing plotline means I'll prolly be following this one too.

Ikkitousen Dragon Destiny Initial Rating: 6/10
A sequel to the original Ikkitousen, infamous for it's large chested fighting schoolgirls who must have gone through at least 10 wardrobes of school uniforms before the series end due to the tendency for clothing to tear off like paper while engaged in combat. Not much more to say really, if you're a fan of ecchi stuff then go for it. One noteworthy point is that the character design and voice acting have taken a turn for the better, although animation is still lagging compared to other new series'.

Naruto Shiipuden Initial Rating: 6/10
If you're an anime fan you've probably watched Naruto, and perhaps even dragged yourself through the filler season. Not much to say except it's more of the same. A little disappointing in comparison to the beginning of the first season, but I do like the way they've matured the characters without going overboard. I'm not a huge fan of Naruto anymore but I'll keep watching for the storyline.

Claymore Initial Rating: 7/10
I'm not a fan of the character designs, but it does appear interesting enough (gore filled too). Worthwhile to grab a few more episodes at least I should suspect. I'll decide my impressions later.

El Cazador de la Bruja Initial Rating: 8/10
Music by Yuki Kajiura, OP by savage genius, ED by FictionJunction YUUKA, and a situation with 2 girls and guns, a spiritual successor of sorts to Noir and Madlax, all created by Bee Train. Throw in a bit of pyrokinesis and what more could you ask for? Characters appear a little bit more exotic/interesting this round too.
Another anime I'll be following, might write a proper follow up eventually.

Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann Initial Rating: 9/10 (Recommended)
I was originally gonna pass this one off cause of how childish it looked in the OP, but I'm glad I decided to watch the whole ep before coming to any real conclusion. Why, you ask? Cause it's wtf awesome. It's just as childish as it looks, but at the same time it's also hilariously ridiculous and weird, and I like the characters already. For some reason, it me of FLCL. Yet another series going into my watch list.

Murder Princess OVA Initial Rating: 8/10
And here we have another weird setting, although not quite as mind warping as Tengen Toppa. Quite an entertaining first episode, and the nice twist halfway through was rather uh... unexpected. Seems to be good stuff and I'm in need of more sword wielding chicks this season anywho, so I guess I'll be following this OVA as well (god damn it, so much for my precious hard drive space).

Seirei no Moribito Initial Rating: 7/10
Some very impressive artwork and animation here (best I've seen in a series) and good music too, but overall the events of the first episode didn't grab my attention much. I dunno why, maybe it just seemed a little slow to me. In any case, I guess it deserves a few more watchings, so I'll be getting a couple more episodes before I decide anything.

Lucky ☆ Star Initial Rating: 7/10
Well, apart from the OP being the largest collection of random words and phrases I've seen in a long while, followed by an awful lot more randomness in dialogue, I think this first episode was actually kinda appealing in a cute and comical way. Aya Hirano does a great job with the voice acting as usual too. Ugh, I don't wanna watch any more series'. Shoot me. At least the masses of everyday dialogue will make it easy to brush up on my Japanese while watching.

Kaze no Stigma Initial Rating: 6/10
Reminds me of Tokyo Underground and I actually have no idea why. I see a lot of potential with this series, considering the two main characters closely resemble the ones from a novel I was writing. Either way it looks like I'll be following this too, if not only because I usually enjoy this type of story.

Bokurano Initial Rating: 7/10
This series certainly appears interesting enough, but for some reason or other it didn't appeal to me so much as to make me want to continue watching it. The idea is novel quite novel though, and the first episode already opens up a strange world of questions to be answered. Just not my type of thing I guess. Reminds me of Uninhabited Planet Survive for some reason.

Romeo x Juliet Initial Rating: 9/10 (Recommended)
A very intruiging take on the Shakespeare classic indeed. Don't worry if you're not a fan of his works (I know I'm not), cause this is after all, a 21st century anime, not an 18th century play script. It's not as heavily based upon the original story as I had expected either. Not too sure about the character designs, I was however very impressed by the OP and GONZO's flashy animation. Looks like I've yet another anime to keep up with. I think it also deserves a follow up post cause of how cool it is.

Reideen Initial Rating: 8/10
I'll admit to not having seen the original series this was based off, but it looks like a solid choice if you're looking for another mecha anime this season (yep, another one). More impressive animation to be expected here. I'm still undecided about the rapidly prevaling useage of 3D animation in anime these days, but it's utilised fairly well in Reideen. Just about special enough to make me want to watch it on top of the other heap of shows this spring; it's worth a look at.

Sisters of Wellber Initial Rating: 8/10
An interesting first episode, for lack of a better descriptive word. I'm not entirely sure where this plot is going yet, but at the same time I'm not sure if I'm curious enough to find out. I do like the ED though, interesting style of music and character designs... a little less than typical to say the least. Also a fair helping of random nudity and sexual themes. Not too bad I guess, I'll put it on my watch-when-bored pile.

Hayate no Gotoku
Rocket Girls
Idolmaster Xenoglossia
Les Miserables
Shining Tears x Wind
Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS
Princess Resurrection
Touka Gettan
Nagasarete Airantou
Lovely Complex
Toward the Terra

While I have most of the pending series' on my computer, I don't know if I have the time or the will to watch all of them as I've already found enough candidates to follow for this season. Still, I'll edit this post as I sift my way through them. Do tell me if there are any of particular note which I've neglected to watch and/or missed.

Edit: Dear god the pending series' list is growing even faster than the heap of junk in the corner of my room. This is not good. Guess I better get a move on.

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