March Comes in like a LionMy Hero AcademiaCaptain AmericaMade in Abyss
Anime 1st episodes 2017: M
Including: Made in Abyss (Season 1), Magical Circle Guru Guru, MahoYome, Makeruna!! Aku no Gundan!, March Comes in like a Lion: Season 1, Marginal #4 Kiss Kara Tsukuru Big Bang, Marvel Future Avengers, Masamune-kun's Revenge, Minami Kamakura High School Girls Cycling Club, Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid (season 1), Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans, Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt, Mobile Suit Gundam: Twilight AXIS, Monster Hunter Stories: Ride On, Monster Strike, Mr. Osomatsu, My Cultivator Girlfriend, My First Girlfriend Is a Gal, My Girlfriend is Shobitch, My Hero Academia: Season 2
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2017
Series: << Anime 1st episodes 2017 >>
Keywords: March Comes in like a Lion, Made in Abyss, My Hero Academia, Gundam, Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, Captain America, anime, SF, fantasy, superhero, mecha
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 21 first episodes
Website category: Anime 2017
Review date: 11 November 2018
Listed under "A": Mahoutsukai no Yome, aka. The Ancient Magus' Bride
Listed under "F": Forest Fairy Five, aka. Mori no Yousei Kinoko no Musume
Listed under "I": Musekinin Galaxy Tylor, aka. The Irresponsible Galaxy Tylor
It's a movie, which you should avoid because it's Lyrical Nanoha: Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha: Reflection
It's a movie: Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei Movie: Hoshi o Yobu Shoujo, aka. The Irregular at Magic High School The Movie: The Girl Who Calls the Stars
It's a movie: Mary and the Witch's Flower, based on Mary Stewart's book "The Little Broomstick".
It's a compilation movie: Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt, aka. Kidou Senshi Gundam Thunderbolt: Bandit Flower
Delayed and still hasn't happened: Musashino!, sequel to Urawa no Usagi-chan.
Made Abyss
Made in Abyss
Season 1
Episodes: 12 x 24 minutes and a 48-minute ep.13
Keep watching: yes
One-line summary: children explore dangerous abyss
I've since finished it and... it's extraordinary. One of the standouts of the year.
Tomoko and I nearly bought the manga of this. The writing's supposedly brilliant, but the art makes the artist look like a paedophile. In the end, we didn't. There's a difference between reading something like that and actually having it on your bookshelves.
However I'm definitely going to be watching this anime, which made a huge critical splash and was one of the most famous anime of the year.
We start with two children called Riko and Nat. They're exploring a beautifully drawn world that wouldn't shame a Ghibli film. A flying carnivorous giant whale slug tries to eat Nat (and could probably eat a double-decker bus), but Riko and Nat are saved by a boy with an Iron Man beam-emitting hand. "He's a robot!" decides Riko. (She's probably right in this, although the boy himself doesn't seem aware of that when he first wakes up. However his elastic rope arm is another giveaway.)
So far, it's the world that's the most intriguing. The cast are good too and I like them, but the world's downright attention-grabbing. The Abyss is a hole 1000 metres wide and of unknown depth, despite having been discovered 1900 years ago. Adventurers have been coming here for years to search for Relics and try not to get eaten by the local fauna (often unsuccessfully), which is why the Abyss now has a city and an orphanage. The children all work there. You remember how children up to the mid 19th century in the UK used to get sent up chimneys and down coal mines? Well, this lot get sent to scavenge down the Abyss, even though that's how all their parents got killed.
"Do you guys work as torturers?"
"Riko's room is actually an old execution chamber."
This show's clearly quality. You just have to look at it. Everyone says that it's an excellent show (and shocking) and I've been looking forward to it for ages.
Mahoujin Guru Guru
Magical Circle Guru Guru
Mahoujin Guru Guru
Season 3
Episodes: 24 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: wacky RPG fantasy for children
Season 1 was in 1994 and Season 2 was in 2000, so I'm assuming that this is a remake, not a sequel. The original manga was a parody of early fantasy RPGs and was technically for children, but would also sometimes include toilet humour and innuendo. (This episode will occasionally show us a female character with big boobs that have a "boing" sound effect.) I approve of the show in principle, but in practice it's pitched a bit too young for me.
We begin with 12-year-old Nike's parents telling him to go out and be a hero. He thinks that sounds too much like hard work, but Mum's cooking persuades him to go along with this dangerous scheme because staying at home seems more dangerous. His happy parents thus launch him into the air with a giant catapult.
This is silly and high-energy, which is good... but Mum and Dad are walking joke generators, not people.
Nike smashes through the window of the village's ugly old witch, only to find that she has a granddaughter (Kukuri, also aged 12). Granny and Kukuri disagree over the best magic staff and have a fist fight, because Kukuri thinks granny's suggestion looks dorky. This ends in Kukuri accidentally summoning a huge demon that causes Nike to disappear up in the air again. I'm starting to see a pattern in this show's humour. When he lands, he's completely unhurt but buried upside-down in the ground, head-first, to the waist. If this weren't a silly comedy, he'd be dead. Granny says goodbye by pulling a silly face while frantically wiggling her arms and legs.
The episode continues. We go to the castle of a lord with a silly moustache. Kukuri proves to be an airhead and volunteers Nike for the job of slaying a demon lord. We meet an arrogant rival hero. We meet a monster that will defeat you, but then comment on the fact that it's about to deliver a long monologue before killing you. (This isn't breaking the fourth wall, but it's stretching it a bit.)
Nope. Not for me. There's one bit where people act like human beings (i.e. Nike buying Kukuri a hairclip), but otherwise the episode's just lots of silly gags with no attempt at conveying the reality of the cast or their world. If you're in the mood, though, I'm sure it's funny.
maho yome
Season 1
Episodes: 24 x 45 seconds
Keep watching: if I've got nothing else to do
One-line summary: Twitter micro-episodes
To my surprise, these aren't Blu-ray extras. They got released on Twitter as tie-ins for the TV anime Mahoutsukai no Yome (i.e. The Ancient Magus' Bride). There's nothing wrong with them, but I didn't notice them being clever or funny either. They're 45 seconds long. They're the definition of throwaway. Even if I watched them, I don't think I'd review the series as a whole because there's nothing here to review.
Ep.0: Chise, Elias and Ruth announce (badly) that the new anime MahoYome will start on Twitter. They're not very good at speaking.
Ep.1: Chise sends Elias out of the house so that she can make breakfast.
Is it set after the end of the TV series? Maybe. Dunno. They're okay, but you might never get around to watching them even if you liked the parent show a lot. Maybe I'll plough through them at some point. I have nothing against the idea. Wouldn't take long.
Makeru na Aku no Gundan
Makeruna!! Aku no Gundan!
Season 1
Episodes: 12 x 4 minutes
Keep watching: yes
One-line summary: alien invader comedy
I've since finished it and... it's not that great, actually.
Aliens want to invade Earth! Unfortunately they're a bit rubbish! The first lot get sent flying by a small girl with hay fever!
An alien is being waved off at the station by his wife. He loves his mum and wants her to be proud of him. "I'm taking it seriously this time!" However his goal is leading his (ahem) army of evil on galactic conquest. "This is Earth. I hear it's one of the easiest planets to invade."
First soldier: "Perfect for getting warmed up!"
Second soldier: "Are we getting paid bonuses for this?"
There is no third soldier. It's not a big army. Anyway, they embark on their reign of terror. This planet is now under the dominion of the forces of evil! "Bad news, there are humans on this planet!" "Never mind, just gather them up somewhere!"
This looks funny. I'll give it a go.
3gatsu no Lion
March Comes in like a Lion
3-gatsu no Lion
Sangatsu no Lion
Episode 12
24 minutes
Keep watching: I'm already in the middle of it
One-line summary: seventeen-year-old professional shogi player
I've since finished it and... it's funnier and more fun than Season 1, but still a strong show.
This one has quite a few episodes and it's not always very light going. Rei Kiriyama is a 17-year-old professional shougi player and he's a bit messed up. Left to his own devices, he'll lurk on his own in an unfurnished apartment and his downbeat thoughts. That's not much fun to watch. He needs help.
Fortunately there are also more entertaining people in the show. There are three sisters who worry about him, drag him into their house and provide lots of loud warmth. There are also other shougi professionals, quite a few of whom seem to be eccentric. There's a big money tournament going on at the moment, so the professionals are out in force.
Oh, and there's also Gotou, Rei's step-brother-in-law. Gotou's wife's in hospital and it's not clear whether she's pregnant or whether she's recovering from domestic violence.
It's a strong show. It's not the kind of thing you lightly marathon, but I'm getting through it, episode by episode. I'll report back.
Marginal 4 Kiss kara Tsukuru Big Bang
Marginal #4 Kiss Kara Tsukuru Big Bang
Season 1
Episodes: 12 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: I didn't even start
One-line summary: pretty boy idols
I started this episode and got hit with a four-boy idol band about to go on stage with "LET'S FILL THE SKY WITH STARS!" Some days I'd have toughed it out, but today I was feeling weak. I gave up. I hit the fast-forward button. I might have missed a masterpiece of orgasmic brilliance, but what the hell. We also see them together at school, if that helps.
Next episode: "A Starburst Measured From The Soul."
Marvel Avengers anime
Marvel Future Avengers
Season 1
Episodes: 26 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: Marvel superheroes
There are five Marvel superheroes and four teenage anime heroes. The former are Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, the Hulk and the Wasp. They fight a giant robot! The latter, though, work for Hydra! Interestingly two of them haven't realised that Hydra are baddies, instead thinking that they're heroes and that the Avengers are villains.
Blue Hair is disabused of some of his notions, so he goes to Tony Stark to ask for help. Unfortunately he still seems a bit confused about this whole "good guy, bad guy" thing. He's worked out that his friends need rescuing, but he still seems to think the best way of asking Iron Man's help is to call him scum and order him around like a peasant. Even the narrator thinks he's being a dick.
To be honest, nothing about this show interests me. The whole thing strikes me as "To Be Avoided". Typical shounen brash anime teens and Marvel superheroes... naah. That said, though, the reluctant and/or unknowing villains are a moderately interesting thing to explore, with their explosive collars and unhappiness about dirty missions. (Also Chloe's hairstyle, which triples the size of her head.) However I'm not expecting this show to be anything other than fights, superheroes, etc.
Masamune kun no Revenge
Masamune-kun's Revenge
Masamune-kun no Revenge
Season 1
Episodes: 12 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: it's a sparklingly good episode, but no
One-line summary: petty unlikeable boy plots elaborately cruel vengeance on petty unlikeable girl
It's really good. I laughed. It's got a light touch and a strong sense of humour.
Masamune is pathetic, self-serving and in love with himself, but everyone loves him because he's good-looking. He's aware of this. He watches his weight like a hawk and knows the calorie count of everything. All the girls swoon over him (except his little sister, who knows what he's like in private), but the anime knows he's a jerk and often makes jokes at his expense. This is pretty cool and I laughed.
Aki Adagaki is the girl he's sworn to humiliate. He's going to make her fall in love with him, then dump her in the harshest way possible. I can't say that sounds like a show I want to watch... but it's not as if she's not asking for it. Her hobby is the public humiliation of anyone who asks her out, which she'll do with a megaphone, insulting nicknames and all her money and servants. The first one gets his reputation trashed in front of the school building. Aki's nicer to her female acolytes, but you wouldn't want to be her Number One Lackey.
This is, surprisingly, great. It's way more entertaining than I'd expected from the title. The cast's full of repellent people, but the show's fully aware of this and is delightfully good at planting banana skins for them. (In fairness, also, minor supporting characters can be nice.) Despite everything, this is a great anime episode. Lots of humour, lots of self-awareness. I had lots of fun... but I still won't watch the rest of the show, because I can see the fun factor plummeting for me once the plot gets going. Masamune's a laugh as the butt of the episode's jokes, but significantly less enjoyable as an anti-hero trying to manipulate and lie his way into Aki's favours. I'll give it a miss. If this sounds like your kind of thing, though, step on up.
Minami Kamakura Koukou Joshi Jitensha bu
Minami Kamakura High School Girls Cycling Club
Minami Kamakura Koukou Joshi Jitensha-bu
Season 1
Episodes: 13 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: schoolgirls on bicycles
I enjoyed it a good deal, but I'm still not going to watch any more because of the title. It's about a cycling club. They'll ride bicycles. I approve of bicycles and I've even been known to ride them myself, but that doesn't mean I'll spend six hours watching a TV show about them.
Our heroine (Hiromi) is a clueless but endearingly confident and cheerful girl who assures her mother she'll be fine on her bicycle. She's not. She recruits some rather surprised help (Tomoe) and starts trying to become less useless. Tomoe's nice. Other things in the episode include a teacher who looks highly impressive in all her cycling gear and some thieving birds.
The episode ends with a live-action segment about how to choose your bicycle. If you like bicycles, I'd recommend this show. This episode was nice and very likeable.
Kobayashi-san chi no Maid Dragon
Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid
Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon
Season 1
Episodes: 13 x 24 minutes + a 14th OVA
Keep watching: yes
One-line summary: dragon girl moves in with office lady
I've since finished it and... it's a charming, funny show. Recommended.
I'd heard that this was a surprise hit by Kyoto Animation. It was slightly different from what I'd expected, but I'm still happy to keep going.
It starts with a proper old-school dragon, big enough that she could eat train stations. (Her answer later to "are you strong?" will be "strong enough to bring about Armageddon." Yeah, don't do that.) She flies from the mountains to the city to visit a computer programmer called Kobayashi, hoping to be able to live as a maid in her apartment.
Kobayashi thinks this is impractical. She doesn't need a maid. (The size thing was solved by the dragon's magic, which can shrink her down to human form.) However the dragon's so obviously dismayed that Kobayashi relents and says yes anyway.
There isn't really have a plot or anything. We're getting to know the cast. It's a gentle episode that's not going anywhere much. The dragon (Tohru) is liable to phone up gods for (bad) advice and doesn't have a problem with eating people. Kobayashi goes mean when she's drunk. Tohru doesn't want Kobayashi to get close to a male colleague at work and says she's sexually in love with Kobayashi, but it's unclear what a dragon means by that. The art style's slightly unexpected, almost like children's book illustrations, but it has its moments of startlingly good animation.
I didn't love the episode, but it was fine and it looks as if we haven't met all the cast yet. I certainly won't be dropping the show. Seems nice so far.
Kidou Senshi Gandamu Tekketsu no Orphans
Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans
Kidou Senshi Gandamu: Tekketsu no Orphans
Episode 39
24 minutes
Keep watching: I'm more tempted than I was before
One-line summary: Gundam
This show's been going since 2015, so this is the third time I've watched one of its episodes. Ep.1 and ep.13 didn't tempt me much, but this was actually good.
More female characters than before, which is good. At first I didn't even recognise the show, but after a while Mika and Kuudelia showed up. There's another girl, Atra, who likes them both and is encouraging Kuudelia to have Mika's child in order to tie him down with fatherhood and stop him running away. However most of this episode is about a polygamist hero (McMurdo) and his many happy wives, I'm not sure that the show isn't aiming for a Mika-Atra-Kuudelia threesome.
McMurdo's great. We learn his backstory and how he formed his space freighter company (and harem) as a way of protecting low-status women who'd been having to take life-threatening jobs. Also, when getting into trouble in the present, he protects the Tekkadan company that our main heroes belong to even though this means casting aside an offer of help. (Personally I'd have preferred to watch more of McMurdo's operation than Tekkadan's, but hey.)
I enjoyed it. The episode kept me interested. I was watching because I wanted to see what happened next, rather than simply as an experiment in watching every first anime episode. That's doubly impressive given that I was jumping into the middle of the show with very little context. Little observations: I still like the zero-gravity moments, while thankfully Kuudelia's hair has calmed down since I last saw it.
I'm considering watching this show now, which I hadn't expected.
Gundam Thunderbolt
Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt
Season 1
Episodes: 8 x 15-20 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: Gundam
It's fairly good in its Gundammish way, but it's still Gundam. Giant piloted war robots fight each other! I did actually manage to force my way through a Gundam series once, but it was tough going.
This one begins with pilots spacewalking through a station. (I always love it when Gundam does that. Zero gravity is cool.) What's interesting is that they're doing so to jazz music, because our hero is Io Fleming (Ian?), who's a playboy and a show-off who'll later be quipping his way out of enemy territory while everyone else got killed, then getting back to home base in order to kiss his scary female captain. (She's scary because of her insect eyes, not her personality. Weird art style choice.) His jazz fanboyishness doesn't suggest 007, though.
Anyway, the Gundams go out to fight. They're at war. "Death to the cowardly Zeon!" This operation is a complete and utter failure as the "cowardly Zeon" snipers blow everyone up.
On the Zeon side, we meet some people who are so indistinguishable from their enemies that at one point I lost track. One side has purple helmet visors while the others use green ones, but that's only an indicator on the battlefield. Anyway, one Zeon is a cripple. Fleming will give offence by mocking the cripple's prosthetics and the two of them swear undying enmity or something.
It looks pretty good for what it is, to be honest. I didn't like any of the characters, but the show's clearly going for a War is Hell vibe (while also having cool swaggering warriors in Gundams). If you like Gundam, then this is a strong one. I can tell because it didn't make me want to fast-forward through fight scenes or anything like that. Looks almost juicy, by Gundamn standards. I'm still not watching it myself, though.
Gundam Twilight Axis
Mobile Suit Gundam: Twilight AXIS
Season 1
Episodes: 5 x three minutes + a 6th of six minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: Gundam (i.e. piloted giant robots)
It's another anime based on a light novel series. What's unusual about this one, though, is the episodes' extreme brevity. You can't tell a story in three minutes... no, wait. Let's be more specific. You can, but these guys can't. It's so trailer-like that I assumed I'd watched the wrong thing and went googling in search of the real Mobile Suit Gundam: Twilight AXIS.
I was wrong. There's only one Mobile Suit Gundam: Twilight AXIS anime series and I was watching it.
A woman wants to go to Axis. A Gundam in a city shoots stuff. The end. Definitely not recommended.
Monster Hunter Stories Ride On
Monster Hunter Stories: Ride On
Episode 14
24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: computer game spin-off for small children
I wouldn't call it bad. It's watchable. It's a reasonably efficient children's show, if all you're looking for is televisual wallpaper. Everyone's reasonably likeable and the action's quite well done.
However it's actively fighting any attempt to pay attention to it. Halfway through, I realised that I'd been completely ignoring what was on screen and instead thinking about other things. It has Neutrino Dialogue, so you could fire a billion pages of it at someone's head and never touch a single brain cell. Examples:
"I'm going to be the one who defeats this monster! I've got to defeat it!"
"You've saved all living things."
"Because we're family."
The plot involves eight-year-olds hunting monsters. You might be wondering what their parents have to say about this. Unusually, the show agrees with you. Our heroes' parents and grandparents are an important part of the episode, getting screentime and discussions back at the village. (They don't do anything, mind you. Adults can't be allowed to steal hero time! This split focus on the older generation is a mildly distinctive feature of this series, but I'm not sure whether this would be a good or bad thing every week.)
The fighting is reasonably well done, until you realise that everyone has kiddie cartoon immunity. There's a bit where a friendly monster falls over a cliff and our hero is so distraught that he has to be restrained from jumping after him in a suicidal effort to help. Unfortunately this isn't very convincing, because:
(a) you don't believe that anyone could die in this show, and
(b) the monster in question can fly.
Because this is a merchandising advertisement under the thin guise of anime, we end with a post-credits bit where Little Bratty Monster talks to the audience. "Get your Media Trigger smartphone app ready! You've got your egg with you, right?" That was nearly the most memorable bit of the episode.
Monster Strike
Season 2: Monster Strike 2nd Season (24 x 8-12 minutes)
Season 3: Monster Strike: The Fading Cosmos (13 x 24 minutes)
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: teenagers and their magical fighting partners
I quite liked Monster Strike ep.1 in 2015, although I didn't continue with it. Looks like it did well enough to run and run.
MONSTER STRIKE 2, EPISODE #0 (15 minutes)
It's got CGI animation! Cel-shaded, but still CGI. Sigh.
We meet a bunch of teens who have "monster" partners. These might be blue-haired magical girls (called Napoleon or Nostradamus or something!), old-school samurai or other people who definitely don't look monsterish. Well, never mind. We also meet a teenager (Ren) who's missing his monster (Oragon) and so is providing emotional content, which I liked and makes the episode a lot less shallow than it might have been.
A flying scary thing shows up. BIG FIGHT. It's a tough opponent, but our heroes eventually turn it into a giant fireball. There were two people/things inside. "Oragon!" shouts Ren, not caring two hoots about the girl who'd also been being held captive. He's clearly happy for her to be barbecued.
The episode seemed okay. Admittedly it's built around a big fight, but Ren/Oragon raises it a bit.
MONSTER STRIKE 3, EPISODE #1 (24 minutes)
This, by contrast, feels more like normal anime and less like a kiddie action show. (It also has hand-drawn animation.)
We start with a future where the world has ended. Inescapable death. This is "part of a future that will inescapably come to be." We then get the opening credits, with an episode title of "THE BEGINNING OF THE END." Nostradamus (that blue-haired girl) is suffering because she saw a bad vision of the future. If it's what we saw, that's understandable. However two other people then have a conversation about changing fate and your future, so maybe there's hope?
Anyway, what happens next is that a tycoon called Madarame starts doing a public broadcast from Madarame Tower about turning history into a future where no one will have to lose their life. "Do you know how much is spent every year on military expenses worldwide?" Madarame has a new kind of deterrent that will change the world... MONSTERS. The show's teenage heroes and their monster partners look shocked by this, so I presume monsters aren't public knowledge. Madarame then demonstrates his theories by launching missiles for his monsters to stop.
This is quite cool, but alas Madarame is about to turn into a bog-standard villain. "The real fight to the death has begun!" The rest of the episode's still okay, though, especially since it includes the following line:
"Let's go, dead rabbits!"
Again, I thought it was okay. Good enough that I'd have definitely continued if I'd already been watching the show (despite the CGI in Season 2), but not strong enough to make me go back and catch up.
Mr. Osomatsu
Season 2
Episodes: 25 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: weird gag anime
I'm not really a fan of Osomatsu-san, but I've been told that it's huge in Japan. (It's a sequel to a well-remembered 1960s anime about sextuplet boys, but set in the present day. They've grown up, but they're still appalling people.)
This episode starts with the original 1960s sextuplets discussing the fact that they're on TV again. The anime's been renewed for a second season, but is it still popular? "Our anime aired two years ago!" "If you're that worried, use this TV to see our future selves!"
We do this and see the future. The sextuplets have become more disgusting, gross and lazy than you can imagine. It's almost impressive to see how far the episode takes it. Our anti-heroes have got a bit rich and they're living it up, each in their own repellent ways. Naturally they end up being humiliated, abused, etc. and their house gets burned down. The 1960s boys see all this on TV and react as anyone would, vowing to avoid this fate, "work hard and have a proper future!"
Somehow this leads to anime genre flipping, 90s-style manga art and a giant robot battle.
It can be a clever show, with accurate genre parodies and so on. (There's some of that here.) It can certainly be funny. It can be almost off-puttingly diverse in its comedy styles, with realistic slice-of-life segments alongside bewildering random shit, fourth wall breaking and "what the hell did I just watch?" All that's good... but I still don't really go for it, personally. It's not just that the show has a low hit rate for me, personally. It's also got the problem that when it's not making me laugh, I don't actually enjoy watching it. The cast aren't meant to be likeable and I don't care about them. I'm sure I'd like it more if I'd grown up watching the original 1960s show, though.
Wo De Tian Jie Nu You
My Cultivator Girlfriend
Wo de Tian Jie Nv You
,Season 1
Episodes: 15 x 15 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: boy is security guard, girl has magic powers
It's another Chinese anime. Does it buck the odds? Is it good? Let's find out!
There's a power cut and a security guard gets sent up to the roof to investigate. (There are actually two guards, but the older, more obnoxious one stays in the office and sends the newbie who only started today.) It's dark and stormy. Up on that roof, a girl glows and flies into the sky... but then lightning hits her and she falls back down to the roof, unconscious. It then starts raining.
In short, a girl is lying outside, unconscious, in what looks like dangerously horrible weather. We've already seen lightning. She's also wearing nothing over her shirt, so she'll probably catch her death of cold. Fortunately, though, our security guard hero has arrived! Does he carry her to safety? Does he put his coat over her? No, he's too busy noticing her bra.
"Hey, you! Hey, are you all right? What should I do? Pretend not to see her?"
He goes away.
Fortunately he comes straight back, because he wants to worry about whether or not it's okay to touch an unconscious girl. "First aid in TV do it all like this." So he kisses her. SHE DOESN'T NEED THE KISS OF LIFE, YOU IDIOT. SHE HASN'T STOPPED BREATHING. However this achieves the desired effect anyway, because she slaps him and marches away after a short but silly conversation about "my first kiss".
Oh, and when they kissed, a magic glowing pillar of fire shot up into the sky from their bodies. The girl's glad that the boy didn't notice anything odd or supernatural. Shockingly, she's correct. He didn't, although he does notice the next day when he's acquired super-eyesight and he can save people with his new magical powers. (He doesn't notice things levitating in his apartment, though.)
It's worth describing the scene where he saves a woman from being crushed, by the way. A chunk of a building falls off the top of it. It's heading towards a woman on the pavement. She looks up and sees it coming. At that point it's still so high up that she probably has a good ten seconds to run to safety, but instead she puts her hands to her head and stands there, waiting to be squashed.
There's some... uh, I can't say romance. Let's call it "man-woman stuff". Magical Girl has an admirer who's so super-rich that his idea of taking her to a film is to book the whole cinema. He offers her roses and we see her knickers. Later she ties Security Guard to a bed and tries to seduce him for about three seconds. "My seduction techniques I learned from that movie have failed." That was quick. She showed some cleavage, basically. Instead, she threatens him with a magical glowing sword. Our hero can either: (a) die, or (b) "cultivate with me and become immortal together!"
Either our hero's an idiot or it's the show itself that's stupid. That was dire.
Hajimete no Gal
My First Girlfriend Is a Gal
Hajimete no Gyaru
Season 1
Episodes: 10 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: I couldn't even finish this episode
One-line summary: boobs-and-virgins comedy
It's pretty ugly. The male hero, Junichi, isn't outrageously unlikeable, but he's polluted by association with his three friends. They're all hopeless virgins and the three friends all admit to some degree of paedophile fantasising. (For the fat one, it's his main character trait.) This always gets laughed off with a throwaway comment. The friends also push Junichi into asking out Yukana, saying she must be easy because she's a "gyaru".
Junichi goes along with this because he's desperate to have sex. He also lets his friends bully him into reading a dirty magazine in class in front of everyone, then is surprised when this turns out badly. I didn't like Junichi.
Yukana, on the other hand, seems nice and I felt bad for her for having boys conspire to have one of their number ask her out in such a nasty, sleazy way. This show's girls generally seem like good people, but this is one of those shows where cup sizes go from "normal" to "offensive". Yui is normally proportioned, so Junichi's friends regard her as flat-chested. Conversely Junichi's childhood friend Nene looks so ridiculous that it might make you annoyed with the show. Oh, and she also calls Junichi her big brother and there's flirtatious byplay between them, because she's female and so will be forced by the genre to end up making a beeline for our, uh, hero.
The episode has censorship that I presume won't be on the Blu-rays, if that helps. The first thing we see is a panty shot (censored) and later there's an unnecessarily long dirty dream sequence with toplessness. Whoooooo. Even if you like anime nudity, though, I couldn't recommend this one.
Girlfriend is Shobitch
My Girlfriend is Shobitch
Boku no Kanojo ga Majimesugiru Sho-Bitch na Ken
Season 1
Episodes: 10 x 24 minutes + an 11th OVA
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: one bland boy and the sex-crazed girls who can't keep away from him
The title sequence promises seven girls, plus of course one spineless male protagonist who's of no interest. (His name's Haruka and he's fine except for the bit where he decides not to tell two other girls about his new girlfriend, but he's not the problem here.) So far we've met three girls and in combination they're, uh... ugh ugh, get me away from this show.
Oddly, I'm struggling for words.
It's not the filth. Lots of filthy anime are great. It's also counter-intuitive that I'm finding it hard to verbalise my objections, because any normal person who saw this show would be immediately and violently repelled. Ask them why and they'd give you a blank stare. I think it's that the girls are so transparently just a parade of otaku sexual fantasies. The show's trying to give its audience a hand job (but for comedy!!), but it's the kind of hand job that makes you frightened about the kind of broken, desperate people who'd be seeking it out.
KOUSAKA - Haruka asks to be his girlfriend at the beginning and she says yes. She's very serious-minded and she's never been a girlfriend before, so she wants to make sure she gets everything right. This is quite good so far and indeed the show's one point of empathic humanity. Kousaka is insecure about herself and worried about whether Haruka will think she's weird. In those scenes, I liked her. Unfortunately that's only a minority of her screen time. The anime regards Kousaka's main function as being to say, in public, things like "I'll start by memorising the 48 sexual positions", "I thought it would offend you since there are cherries in there" and "please tell me about your sexual fetishes". She decides that Haruka must be a masochist, dresses up in BDSM gear and calls him abusive names. She's the show's best character and she does actually seem real some of the time, but she's also an obnoxious one-note joke.
SHIZUKU - Haruka's childhood friend. She's friendly and full of beans. She'll jump on him and press her breasts against him, especially if they're in front of Kousaka. She'll grope people's boobs and talk filth. She'll be as obscene as Kousaka, except that Kousaka's super-serious about it and Shizuku thinks it's funny.
KANATA - Haruka's little sister. Japan, we need to talk.
Those are just the ep.1 characters, by the way. There will be four more, minimum. Let me visit wikipedia... oh my word. They get worse. Yes, I'm comfortable with my decision to drop this show.
Boku no Hero Akademia
My Hero Academia
Boku no Hero Academia
Season 2
Episodes: 14-38
24 minutes
Keep watching: yes
One-line summary: superhero school
I've since finished it and... it's still good fun.
It's not the best episode of My Hero Academia, to be honest, but that's because it's got lots of "story so far". The first 6-7 minutes are pure recap. The rest of the first half is just discussion and reflection of Season 1. Only at the halfway point do we get any suggestion of new story, which as it happens involves a school sports day.
That might not sound like a big deal, but this is Superhero School. The entire country will be watching, as will the superhero agencies who'll be scouting for promising potential clients. This is our heroes' opportunities to move forward with their careers!
That's yet another example of how this series differs from Western superheroes, incidentally, with its rejection of the lone wolf American vigilante. The students are going to government-approved superhero school, aiming to get their superhero licences and doing superhero career planning. Uraraka admits she's doing it for the money. (She wants to support her family.) When the teachers are discussing the villains who attacked the school in Season 1, it's seen as startling that the fiends were going under false names and using unregistered powers! (Thinking about it, all this might be a realistic view of how society would actually treat superheroes if they were real. It's almost certainly how Japan would do it, anyway.)
Not a lot happens this week, but All Might does have some worrying information for Izuku. Anyway, I liked Season 1 and enjoyed this episode even with not much plot and lots of recaps. I'll definitely be watching all the rest.