The GLORIO Fall 2018 Anime Guide – Part 2

And we’re back, fashionably late, with part deux of our most excellent season preview guide. It couldn’t have come at a less convenient time, though, as Jel’s still nowhere to be found, I’m still drowning in work, and Iro is on a boat. Luckily, he left me a proverbial note with some of his thoughts, while Zigg and Marlin swooped in to aid me in this dissection, which means you once again get four Glorio Crew members delivering their scorching hot takes on next season’s anime in stead of one. This time around, we go over the back half of the fall lineup, including an anime about that one philosopher you hate, an anime about ninjas who eat raw cinnamon sticks and an anime that tries to sell you bottles of Jeanne d’Arc’s saliva. Oh dear.

Just a quick heads-up, in case you missed part 1, it’s right here. If you’re all caught up, though, let’s not waste any more time and delve head-first into the garbage!

RErideD: Tokigoe no Derrida

Anime Original by GEEKTOYS
Air Date: 10/4/2018
Director: Takuya Satou (Steins;Gate, Kase-san and Morning Glories)
Series Composition: Kenji Konuta (Servamp, Devils Line)

Iro: I’m obligated to talk about this because Yoshitoshi ABe is involved, so here goes: RErideD apparently follows a man named “Derrida Yvain” who has basically invented cool killer robots or something, but his bosses don’t want to listen to him when he tells them that maaaaybe we should make sure the cool killer robots don’t have some kind of fatal flaw that’ll make them kill us all. But a sudden attack on the facilities force Derrida into some kind of cryogenic sleep chamber, and he wakes up 50 years in the future to discover that the world is overrun by his cool killer robots, surely a problem that only he – as their creator – can solve. Unfortunately, pre-release reception seems to be pretty poor, and it looks like the anime production just isn’t up to really communicating Yoshitoshi ABe’s artwork and usual mysterious vibe. Might I recommend Haibane Renmei?

Bakumatsu

Video Game Adaptation by Studio DEEN
Air Date: 10/5/2018
Director: Masaki Watanabe (KADO: The Right Answer)
Series Composition: Masahiro Yokotani (Sakura Quest, Free!)

Aqua: The Bakumatsu period, chronicling the civil unrest and wars that led to the end of the shogunate and kickstarted the country’s evolution into an imperial, Westernized superpower, is undoubtedly one of the most interesting peridos in Japanese history. But is it really necessary to cart it out every other season? Bakumatsu‘s premise is basically the otome game equivalent of what “four cute girls in a club do nothing” is for seinen anime, or “cops solve crime” is for American daytime television. Oddly enough, that sets it apart from what the game it is based on is all about. While Bakumatsu the game was a dating simulator featuring a heroine sent back through time by a mysterious artifact, Bakumatsu the anime will apparently be a “sci-fi action adventure” series about various factions fighting over said mysterious artifact — with not a damsel in sight. Ambitious? Definitely, though I don’t exactly see this shift making Bakumatsu look any less generic. As an experiment in adaptation, it might be worth checking out. But as a contender for a highly coveted crown? I wouldn’t get my hopes up.

Our Maid is Way Too Annoying!

Uchi no Maid ga Uzasugiru!

Manga Adaptation by Doga Kobo
Air Date: 10/5/2018
Director: Masahiko Oota (Love Lab, Sabagebu!, Minami-ke)
Series Composition: Takashi Aoshima (Love Lab, Sabagebu!, Minami-ke)

Aqua: Just imagine, for a second, that there was any other title and trailer attached to these delicious credentials. The people behind three of the greatest anime comedies of all time, paired up with the prime providers of colourful smears on the small screen? Something would have to go terribly wrong if such a project would fail to spark any excitement down here at the Glorio Blog. Yet alas, a cruel god rules our timeline. I have always to a certain extent been tolerant of the comically perverted lesbian trope, despite all the creepy stereotypes it enforces, but when you make the stalker in question a grown woman and her target a child, it’s hard — not to say repugnant — not to draw a line. Our Maid is Way too Annoying! is a classic example of anime trying to have its cake and eat it too, leaving no opportunity untouched to drag the titular maid for her unacceptable sexual preferences while at the same time happily feeding said preferences with its lecherous gaze and all but begging the audience to believe that she just wants her ojou-sama to be happy. The utter blaséness with which UzaMaid can try to cater to pedophiles on one hand and tug on the heartstrings on the other remains utterly baffling, and the fact that it seems to be working shows just how good anime is at normalizing the obscene. There may be a world in which a clever, precocious girl using increasingly convoluted schemes to escape the clutches of a kiddie fiddler trying to groom her makes for good wholesome fun, but in case you’ve been living under a rock for the past whenever, that world isn’t this one.

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Golden Wind

JoJo no Kimyou na Bouken: Ougon no Kaze, Le Bizzarre Avventure di GioGio: Vento Aureo

Manga Adaptation by David Production
Air Date: 10/5/2018
Director: Naokatsu Tsuda (all previous parts of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure)
Series Composition: Yasuko Kobayashi (all previous parts of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure)

Iro: Aaaaand we’re back with Part 5, which is around where I stopped reading the manga years and years ago because I didn’t like Giorno. By this point in the series, both the Stand battle format and Araki’s art shift into slender pretty boys are in full swing, making this arc very popular in Japan. It takes place a couple years after Part 4 in the mafia-laden streets of Italy, and stars Giorno Giovanna, the son of Dio Brando. But he still counts as a JoJo, because remember how Dio stole the body of Jonathan Joestar like 120 years ago? Like most things in this show, it’s best not to think about it too hard. Regardless of all that business, Giorno wants to hit the top of the mafia and run his own gang, and meets plenty of wacky Stand-Users along the way.

Marlin: Hey, I’m always up for more Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure. Honestly, if my disappointing season chronicling My Hero Academia has reminded me of anything, it’s that I miss the reliability that Jojo’s different stories brought to the shounen table. Plus, if this trailer is any indication, they’re gonna bring their A game to the soundtrack as per usual. While I’m definitely way more of a fan of the hilarious musclemen common to Araki’s older work, I’ll never doubt his ability to weave an engaging tale about punching someone in the face. Bring it on!

Boarding School Juliet

Kishuku Gakkou no Juliet

Manga Adaptation by LIDENFILMS
Air Date: 10/6/2018
Director: Seiki Takuno (Yamada-kun and the 7 Witches, Sekkou Boys)
Series Composition: Takao Yoshioka (High School DxD, Your Lie in April)

Aqua: Has anyone ever done “What if Romeo and Juliet, but in anime high school?” before? I seems so obvious, but I honestly can’t think of any examples. Nisekoi comes close, but in that the conflict between the two families started before the show even began. Boarding School Juliet, on the other hand, is more or less a carbon copy of the Shakespeare play, albeit with fair Verona replaced by a boarding school on an island between two warring nations, the two feuding families with two rivaling dorms (housing students from said warring nations, natch) and the splendiferous wordcraft with platitudes and tired jokes. Romeo and Juliet are dating, but oh no, their friends want to beat each other up, so they have to keep their relationship a secret as Juliet gets kidnapped by Romeo’s pervy friends and Romeo gets into trouble with about a dozen other girls! Look this stuff basically writes itself, and I’m sure Seiki Takuno will be able to translate it to screen just fine, but could we maybe get, I dunno, anything else?

Ulysses: Jeanne D’Arc and the Alchemist Knight

Ulysses: Jeanne D’Arc to Renkin no Kishi

Light Novel Adaptation by AXsiZ
Air Date: 10/7/2018
Director: Shin Itagaki (Teekyu, Ben-To)
Series Composition: Ryuunosuke Kingetsu (Manabi Straight!)

Aqua: Okay, maybe anything but this. From the creator of Oda Nobuna, one of the approximately a gazillion light novels about Oda Nobunaga, now comes Ulysses, one of the approximately a gazillion light novels about Jeanne D’Arc. Or rather “Jehanne Darc”, just in case the estate comes knocking. Or rather, Montmorency — I swear, I’m losing brain cells every second I spend researching this tripe — the super-special-awesome alchemist knight who sweeps Jeanne Jehanne off her feet with his magical saliva in the world’s least tantalizing kiss scene. Seriously, did he just throw up into her mouth? What exactly this spectacle of boobs and body fluids has to do with the 100 Years’ War, let alone with the martyrdom of the real Joan of Arc is a mystery to me, but I guess any excuse to get a wispy blonde girl in armor will suffice nowadays. Hey, at least it isn’t isekai.

Marlin: Finally, an anime adaptation of James Joyce’s immortal novel… wait no this is just more gritty magical girl trash isn’t it?

Iro: I never quite understood Japan’s fetish for Jeanne D’Arc, but they’re not exactly helping their case here.

SSSS.Gridman

Tokusatsu Adaptation by Trigger
Air Date: 10/7/2018
Director: Akira Amemiya (Inferno Cop, Ninja Slayer from Animation)
Series Composition: Keiichi Hasegawa (Rage of Bahamut: Genesis, Ultraman, Kamen Rider)

Iro: I haven’t actually watched the original Gridman nor its American version Superhuman Samurai Syber Squad, but I did see the first episode of this at Anime Expo, and I can only describe myself as cautiously intrigued. This follows an amnesiac high schooler who is accosted (via computer screens) by the mysterious Gridman, who insists that his destiny is to combine their powers to combat evil. Perhaps more interesting is that this is a full-on new Trigger production, and this time without A-1 to take all the blame like Darling in the FRANXX; if Gridman is bad, ain’t nobody to blame but them. Scuttlebutt says this is helmed mostly by the younger, newer staff rather than Trigger’s old guard (who are busy on Promare), and only time will tell if it lives up to their reputation.

Zigg: Firstly, how crazy is it that they’re making an anime version of Superhuman Samurai Syber Squad? I’ve been harsher than most on many of Trigger’s recent efforts, but the fact remains there are few other studios I’d prefer to have a crack at bringing the explosive camp of tokusatsu to animation. This trailer shows off some bright, colourful style and a certain verve and panache which is encouraging, and it’ll be fascinating to see how what Trigger are claiming are their ‘younger generation’ handle a full length, full scale production.

Release the Spyce

Anime Original by Lay-duce
Air Date: 10/7/2018
Director: Akira Satou
Series Composition: Takahiro (Akame ga KILL!, Yuki Yuna is a Hero)

Aqua: No, Release The Spyce is not a poorly translated line from a 1980’s arcade shoot-‘m-up, but the actual title of a team-up between Takahiro, writer of the grim and gritty Akame ga KILL!, and Namori, artist of the very definitely not grim and gritty YuruYuri. This should make for an interesting clash of aesthetics, at least, though looking at the admittedly rather decent trailer has me guessing this will mostly be an affair of style over substance. A kind of Princess Principal without the clever character writing and the world-building and parts where it’s an actual, suspenseful spy drama, if you will. Anyway, with Takahiro in the writer’s chair, you know what to expect — characters dropping like flies, dark twists and tonal inconsistencies throughout — so if the action is exciting enough, perhaps Release the Spyce could be this season’s lovable train wreck? I don’t know! I don’t care! Stop asking me things!

Iro: The potential theoretically exists for this to be another surprise hit like Princess Principal, but this isn’t by Studio 3Hz nor does it have Ichiro Okouchi writing. Hell of a title, though.

Zigg: We keep making Princess Principal jokes about this show, but it’s hard not to given how much the comparison is invited. A bunch of schoolgirls are secretly undercover black ops agents? Unfortunately, this looks to lack any of the qualities which made 3Hz’s surprise hit a Glorio favourite. Instead of steampunk style and a surprisingly nuanced story of deception and political wrangling, instead we’ve got generic moeblob characters, a bunch of flat, uninspired looking animation and the traditional and tiresome lesbian teasing. I’m not saying this is guaranteed to be a disaster, but it certainly doesn’t look great, no matter how much we bring up that other show.

Anima Yell!

Manga Adaptation by Doga Kobo
Air Date: 10/7/2018
Director: Masako Satou
Series Composition: Fumihiko Shimo (Clannad, New Game!, Non Non Biyori)

Aqua: This one’s about cheerleading. I don’t need to tell you thins, because it’s never what the girls actually do that decided whether One of These™ is worth your time. Shows like Anima Yell! can pick outlandish fascinating hobbies and make them boring (e.g. Comic Girls), or vice-versa (e.g. HaNaYaMaTa). What truly matters is the execution, and in that regard the rules for making a good schoolgirls-in-a-club show are exactly the same as those for making a good space opera or fantasy epic. A brief glimpse at the Anima Yell! wiki, which is a real thing that actually exists, tells me this show seems to be taking the art of cheerleading quite seriously, which at least has me more interested in this than I am in that other Doga Kobo show this season. The other reason to check out Anima Yell is the surprising collaboration between Satou, who is making his directorial debut, and Shimo, a veteran screenwriter who’s been all over the place, from Kyoto Animation hits (Clannad, Amagi Brilliant Park, The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya) over nerve wracking rom-coms (Kokoro Connect, Golden Time) to mecha cult classic Dai-Guard. It’s always nice to have a good One of These™ around for when the rest of the season doesn’t quite deliver on what we’re truly here for, so I’ll be interested to see if Anima Yell! manages to qualify.

Zigg: This looks to be yet another cute-girls-go-cute-things show, which is not necessarily a bad thing in itself, but it does mean you have to go the extra mile to make yourself stand out. On the basis of what we’ve seen so far, I don’t know if Anima Yell! is going to be able to do that. Cheerleading is an interesting activity, one which is way tougher and more physically involving than you might think, and it gets bonus points for being a thing high school girls might actually plausibly do. The presence of Love Lab and Nozaki-kun studio Doga Kobo is a positive sign too, even given their mixed recent output. Still, it’s hard to shake the feeling this one won’t be much more than a pleasant distraction at best, and for me personally the involvement of Clannad screenwriter Shimo is a major warning flag.

Conception

Video Game Adaptation by Gonzo
Air Date: 10/10/2018
Director: Keitarou Motonaga (Digimon Adventure Tri, Date A Live)
Series Composition: Yuuko Kakihara (Tsukigakirei, Digimon Adventure Tri)

Aqua:

Zigg: The premise for this thing is so utterly ludicrous and tasteless that it honestly sounds like the kind of parody title someone would come up with for a particularly lazy parody porn anime. Even leaving that aside, ‘from the writer and director of Digimon Adventure Tri‘ is all you’d need to send me running away from this at top speed at this point.

My Sister, My Writer

Ore ga Suki nano wa Imouto dakedo Imouto ja Nai

Light Novel Adaptation by Magia Doraglier & NAZ
Air Date: 10/10/2018
Director: Hiroyuki Furukawa (My First Girlfriend is a Gal, My Wife is the Student Council President!)
Series Composition: Yuuichirou Momose

Marlin: Aqua made some #HATEWATCH jokes when describing this show, but I have to say that after my two journeys through the valley of the shadow of death, this boilerplate imouto premise doesn’t look like it’s gonna come close. By the title I assume adoption is gonna be involved? So it isn’t even going all in on the sister depravity the way Imosae did. The one notable thing is that the trailer only shows the the felonious sibling duo, and the heroine is the only character to appear on the volume covers, which is surprising since these kinds of stories are usually just harem comedies disguised in a premise that is somehow even more disgusting than harem comedy. Considering the director and studio, I can’t promise I’ll actually give the revival a chance unless I get some guarantees that it isn’t as lascivious as their normal fare.

As Ms. Beelzebub Likes It

Beelzebub-jou no Okinimesu mama

Manga Adaptation by LIDENFILMS
Air Date: 10/11/2018
Director: Minato Kazuto (Akashic Records of Bastard Magic Instructor)
Series Composition: Yoriko Tomita

Zigg: This seems like another of a growing subgenre – harem shows that attempt to disguise their true nature by dressing up in surprisingly attractive sugar-coated shoujo style and attempting to pass themselves off as legit productions. This one kind of gives the game away though by just straight up showing a naked lady in the trailer. Aside from that the only vibe i get from this is utterly generic alternate-world fantasy escapades, so I think I”ll safely pass.

Tsurune: Kazemai High School Archery Club

Tsurune: Kazemai Koukou Kyuudoubu

Light Novel Adaptation by Kyoto Animation
Air Date: 10/15/2018
Director: Takuya Yamamura (Sound! Euphonium episode director)
Series Composition: Michiko Yokote (Shirobako, Princess Tutu)

Aqua: I’m not particularly interested in Tsurune, and that’s strange, since I’ve always considered myself to be this blog’s prime Kyoto Animation apologist. Inevitably, I had to ask myself why I can’t even muster up the slightest ounce of interest in their latest project. Is it because it’s a sports anime? That didn’t stop me from liking Free!, though. Is it because the staff doesn’t look like anything special? No, Michiko Yokote wrote my favourite series of 2015, and director Takuya Yamamura got go work under the tutelage of potentially the very best director active in the industry at the moment, so it can’t be that either. Am I just getting tired of what it is Kyoto Animation are so good at? I don’t think so, but the alternative has shivers running down my spine. The alternative would have me not care about Tsurune because it’s about boys. I’ll admit, there is something inside of me that has to get used to the idea that anime can also be interesting without girls. Part of that weird hangup is me just having a history of relating more to female characters, but most of it is bullshit I refuse to play along with. So why shouldn’t I be excited? If Tsurune can deliver the same kind of cast chemistry, intense character development and  just plain old good storytelling Free! managed to pull off, why shouldn’t we let the boys out to play for once?

Zigg: It’s no secret that Kyoto Animation have their sights firmly set on dominating the world of movies, and that means their increasingly sporadic TV productions are both big deals but also somehow less impressive efforts than they have been in the past. Despite the incredible levels of polish and care they put into their shows, I’ve found it hard to fall in love with anything the studio has produced for TV in years. This looks to be more of the same, an incredibly pretty, sun-dappled production about a lonely high schooler who finds a way to grow up and make friends through swimming music mochi archery. It’s pretty much guaranteed to reach a minimum threshold of quality, but I feel like at this point I would absolutely take something less polished and more intriguing.

Han-Gyakyu-Sei Million Arthur

Video Game Adaptation by J.C. Staff
Air Date: 10/25/2018
Director: Youhei Suzuki (Planet With, The “Hentai” Prince and the Stony Cat)
Series Composition: Tsuyoshi Tamai (Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu, Strike Witches)

Aqua: Buckle up, chucklefucks, because this one is going to demand a lot more of your entirely undeserved attention. You ready? Okay, here we go. Han-Gyaku-Sei Million Arthur is an anime based on an MMORPG of the same name based on a gatcha game, Kai-Ri-Sei Million Arthur, based on another gatcha game, Kan-Kaku-Sei Million Arthur, that now doesn’t exist anymore unless you live outside of Japan, and is ostensibly created to promote yet another upcoming mobile game called Kou-Kyou-Sei Million Arthur. That is, indeed, a lot of Arthurs, but I guess that’s about as many as you need to have more Arthurs than Fate/Grand Order. everyone knows how gatcha game franchises are ranked by the number of Arthurs they have. Suffice to say, the Million Arthur franchise is Square-Enix’s big effort to establish itself on the mobile market — which is a bit worrying seeing as most of it looks like a parody of anime at best. The instantly forgettable mish-mash of far too many over-designed characters, the grating theme song, the phoned-in voice acting, the nonexistent backgrounds — just about anything in this trailer sets off an immediate warning flag. They may have a million Arthurs, I still have more reasons not to care.

Zigg: Not sure you could produce a more poisonous combination to me than ‘based on a series of mobile games’ and ‘extremely obvious Fate ripoff’. At this seems to be less self-important and more obviously cartoonish than than its inspiration, but unless they take a hard left turn into making this a total parody it’s going to be difficult for me to care too much. At least it keeps up the grand mobage tradition of having some of the most ludicrous costume designs ever dreamt up.

Karakuri Circus

Le Cirque du Karakuri

Manga Adaptation by Studio VOLN
Air Date: 10/2018
Director: Satoshi Nishimura (Trigun, Ushio & Tora)
Series Composition: Kazuhiro Fujita (Ushio & Tora)

Marlin: Well, there’s not a whole lot to go on here since this trailer is just all manga panels, but it certainly looks cool enough? You’re always gonna be threading a thin line in child experimentation stories, so let’s hope this doesn’t go too hard on the Elfen Lied side of things. I’m also getting a bit of a battle manga feel to it all, which will definitely be competing for space so long as Jojo is on the scene, but it at least has enough interesting designs to keep you intrigued. We’ll also have to see if having this be written by the manga author will cause any problems in pacing, but otherwise I’m up for giving it a shot.

Run with the Wind

Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteru

Novel Adaptation by Production I.G.
Air Date: 10/2018
Director: Kazuya Nomura (Joker Game, Robotics;Notes)
Series Composition: Kohei Kiyasu

Zigg: Ok, it’s a sports show, but there’s a few potentially interesting things about this one. For a start, it’s based on an actual novel, no ‘light’ disclaimer needed. Secondly, it’s one of those rare anime focused on grown-ass adults. OK, they’re university students, so maybe that’s a bit of an overstatement, but at least it’s a non-high school set drama starring male protagonists. That alone is enough to put it on my radar, at least peripherally.

-==-

That’s all the anime the fall season has on offer. A bit of a mixed bag, as usual, though I do get the feeling there’ll at least be plenty to talk about. And talk we will. Make sure to check in next week for our first looks to come rolling in! But for now, which shows are you looking forward to the most? Be sure to let us know in the comments!

2 thoughts on “The GLORIO Fall 2018 Anime Guide – Part 2

  1. Kind of annoyed that sometimes I seem to be the only person in the anime blogging community to realize that Takahiro did more than Akame ga Kill! He’s also responsible, and more on point for Spyce, for Yuki Yuna.

    • I did acknowledge Yuki Yuna as a prior credit, but in the actual preview text I opted for Akame ga Kill! as the clearest representative of Takahiro’s style just to highlight the odd style clash at play here. Though I’m sure there are a lot of differences between the two, in essence what they say about Takahiro as a writer is the same — and that’s the point.

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