First Look: Spring 2016 Anime Shorts

space

It’s spring, so it’s time to break out the shorts! Unless you, you know, don’t like to wear shorts. Or if the shorts in question are cargo shorts. Don’t wear cargo shorts, kids. Anyways, if this season’s miserable lineup of shorts is any indication, shorts seem to be going out of fashion. Too bad. I’ll almost miss these little buggers. Good thing Trigger is still here and still very much lacking the funds to afford producing a full-length television anime. May their short once again be the short that certifies the future of shorts.

alsospace

Space Patrol Luluco

Alternate titles: Uchuu Patrol Luluco, Space Police in Space
Anime Original by Trigger
Simulcast on Crunchyroll (in space)

Space Premise

After her dad gets space injured during a rather embarrassing space accident, space schoolgirl Luluco is forced to replace him as a space detective at the space patrol, hunting space criminals. In space.

Aqua’s Space Verdict: Every Trigger Show Ever… In Space!

Trigger once again show off that they’re at their best when they make cheery space magical girl shows rather than anything attempting to actually be about anything – looking at you, Kill la Kill – which almost makes you forget that Space Patrol Luluco is yet again the only show Imaishi and co. know how to make. Only now it’s in space! Luckily, there’s no space sin in never changing a winning space team, and Trigger’s comedic timing, visual flair and excellent space skill at making a space show look good without any space money remain as solid as ever. Space Patrol Luluco won’t win the space studio any new fans, but then again, who isn’t a space fan of Trigger at this point?

Also, an ending song by Bonjour Suzuki and TeddyLoid? Sign me the fuck on. In space.

Jel’s Space Verdict: So Trigger That She Becomes a Trigger When Triggered… In Space!

This space shorts season is really space lame, but we had to do this space post to make sure we talked about this space show… in space. It has all the kinetic energy and bluntly stupid space humor you’d expect from the makers of space Inferno Cop, the sillier space moments of Kill la Kill, and if you want to go back to the space Gainax days, Panty and Stocking. Needless to say, it’s a whole lot of space fun, and mostly keeps space Imaishi’s love of hyper sex and violence (at mach speed) in space check… mostly. Even though it’s a space short, it’s a must watch for this space anime season. SPACE!

pandapeace

Pan de Peace!

Alternate titles: Peace Through Bread!
Manga Adaptation by Asahi Production
Simulcast on Crunchyroll

Premise

A couple of high school girls bond over their shared, mildly disturbing love of bread.

Aqua’s Verdict: In-croissant-ly Boring

I like to joke about people immediately screaming ‘gaaaaaaaaaay’ at two anime girls if they do so much as hug, but now the anime girls have started doing it themselves! Unfortunately, acknowledging what everyone is already thinking won’t make your saccharine queer-baiting any more genuine, Pan de Peace!, and the only other thing you’ve got going for yourself is your adorably deluded belief that people can really be as obsessed with bread as the creatures you call your characters are. You’re not an anime, you’re a hilariously misguided advertorial penned by people whose only prior writing experience consisted of role-playing Kin-Iro Mosaic on Twitter. Badly. So now go to your room and think about what you’ve done.

Jel’s Verdict: Bread Gals Being Bread Pals

Three minutes is apparently just enough time to establish these girls really, really like bread and they are also lesbians, because what girls school comedy doesn’t have the cast wanting to make out with each other? It’s always hard to judge these really short shorts, but I didn’t find anything particularly compelling here. Count me out, but if you want to see cute girls talk about bread and don’t have a lot of time to do it, this show is for you.

crane

Bishoujo Yuugi Unit Crane Game Girls

Anime original by Kyotama
Simulcast on Crunchyroll

Premise

Led to believe they’ve been recruited as idols, three girls end up working part time at a dingy arcade. Except they’re actually saving the world from a meteor, or something?

Aqua’s Verdict: Cash Grab

Literally the only interesting thing about this barely animated mess is its casting of Rico Sasaki, who stands out amongst the crowd of interchangeable idol voice actresses solely because her voice is actually somewhat remarkable. I almost pity whatever crane game manufacturer is sponsoring is thing, though. It’s almost cute how they think they stand a single chance in the cutthroat world that is idol anime with this half-assed, opportunist garbage.

Jel’s Verdict: Save Your Yen for Something Else

Soooo anyone want to explain how the crane game thing saves the world? Or why this barely animated show exists? The concept is so bonkers that it could have been fun, but there’s not enough time or production values to make it worth it. If you want a weird idol who saves the world from the apocalypse (several times), go watch Miss Monochrome.

onigiriOnigiri

Alternate titles: Donut
Game adaptation by Pierrot Plus
Simulcast on The Anime Network (remember them?)

Premise

It’s exactly like a video game! Only animated way worse!

Aqua’s Verdict: Shovelware

Okay, we blast these shorts for basically being commercials all the time, but come on now, Onigiri doesn’t even try to be anything more. It doesn’t even bother to pretend that it’s anything more than just a paint-by-numbers fantasy RPG, to a point where it will just shamelessly slap health bars and hit counters on screen and word its exposition like a flippin’ tutorial. I’m not too proud to admit that Onigiri‘s fourth-wall-breaking approach does occasionally hit the right marks, yet it’s also one of these shows that needs to learn the Rule of The World God Only Knows: Pointing out the clichés of your genre won’t do you any good if you shamelessly indulge in them yourself. And with its generic characters, mannered dialogue, embarrassing anti-humour and gratuitous boob jiggle, Onigiri has so many clichés it feels like a parody of anime. It’s even called Onigiri, for fuck’s sake.

Jel’s Verdict: At Least They Animated It???

They also had a couple decent 4th wall breaking jokes, the account suspension at the end got a chuckle out of me. Let’s be honest though, at less than 4 minutes long with a 1 minute intro sequence this is basically a commercial for the game. It’s amusing for an episode, but I can’t see them having anywhere to go with it from here.

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