Junji ItoThe IdolmasterJapanese
Anime 1st episodes 2018: I
Including: IDOLiSH7, THE iDOLM@STER: Cinderella Girls Theater, THE iDOLM@STER SideM Wake Atte Mini!, Inazma Delivery, Inazuma Eleven: Ares, Ingress the Animation, Iroduku: The World in Colors, Isekai Izakaya: Japanese Food From Another World, Island, Ito Junji Collection, Iya na Kao sare nagara Opantsu Misete Moraitai
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2018
Original creator: Junji Ito
Series: << Anime 1st episodes 2018 >>
Keywords: The Idolmaster, SF, anime, rubbish, horror
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 11 first episodes
Website category: Anime 2018
Review date: 25 May 2020
Listed under "H": Isekai Maou to Shoukan Shoujo no Dorei Majutsu, aka. How Not to Summon a Demon Lord
It's a movie: Gekijouban Infini-T Force: Gatchaman - Saraba Tomo yo
idol ish 7
Series 1
Episodes: 17 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: male idol group
It's based on a mobile phone game about managing a male idol group. Here's the official blurb:
"A group of aspiring idols gather at Takanashi Productions and are entrusted with the company's future. The seven men who have just met represent a variety of totally different personalities. However, they each have their own charm and possess unknown potential as idols. Forming a group, they take their first step together as "IDOLiSH7." Their brilliantly shining dancing forms onstage eventually begin captivating the hearts of the people. In the glorious but sometimes harsh world of idols, they aim for the top with dreams in their hearts!"
Surprisingly, though, it's quite good and was a hit in Japan. I'm not interested in this subject matter, but the episode was perfectly watchable. The heroine has a spine, only one of the boys is annoying and you're not drowning in camp.
Points of interest include: (a) the heroine's the boss's daughter, but that's not necessarily an advantage. He's a jovial player of mind games. (b) he has a pet... uh, something. What on Earth is that? (c) the heroine's first job is to choose four of her seven idols to fire.
It's a decent first episode. If you like pretty boy idol anime, try it.
THE iDOLM@STER: Cinderella Girls Theater
Cinderella Girls Gekijou
Episodes 26-39 of "Theater" (3 minutes each)
Episodes 26-33 of "Web" (1 minute each)
Keep watching: yes
One-line summary: throwaway semi-comedy shorts
I'm a big fan of THE iDOLM@STER: Cinderella Girls, so I'm drifting amiably through these silly twin spin-offs. It's a bunch of light-hearted scenes, usually played without much seriousness or reality.
This week, "Theater" has the girls playing soccer and baseball simultaneously, as a combined game. Base-ccer? It's pointless and has badly animated feet, but it's mildly amusing. After that, "Web" has frivolous discussion of the implied violence in the Japanese children's little finger promise.
It's okay. It's easy to watch, but also easy to forget to watch.
idol master side M
THE iDOLM@STER SideM Wake Atte Mini!
Season 1
3 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: silly idolmaster nothing
I wouldn't recommend this even to other iDOLM@STER fans. It's like Cinderella Girls Theater (i.e. silly characters doing nothing much for three minutes), but with boys. (SideM is boy idols.)
PLOT SYNOPSIS: (a) boys, boys, boys, (b) sing, sing, sing, (c) there's a black hovering ghost at one point, but I don't think it means anything. Nothing here does, really.
inazuma delivery
Inazma Delivery
Season 1
Episodes: 10 x 2 minutes
Keep watching: yes
One-line summary: SF comedy
I've since finished it and... whoops, I watched the 2016 season, not 2018. But it's surreal and amusing.
A black pig called Hemingway watches a TV show that wants us to Ret's Enjoy Engrish.
A TV-eating shark called By The Way can't speak and has no facial expressions.
A Man in Black is an owl.
There are aliens. There's a beanstalk (?), with fruits that turn you invisible. Firearms are used indiscriminately. The episode's called Close Encounters of the Shark.
Yeah, I'm up for this.
Inazuma 11
Inazuma Eleven: Ares
Inazuma Eleven Ares no Tenbin
Season 1
Episodes: 26 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: mega-shounen football show
It's like a genre crossover.
(a) it's a soccer anime. Elementary schoolboys (plus one girl) are in a school sports club.
(b) it's a hot-blooded shounen show with magical superhero attacks. Boys will leap into the air trailing flames from their feet, while the goalkeeper can emit energy blasts.
Inazuma Eleven is a sizeable franchise of anime, manga, games and films. This is an alt-universe version of the original 2008-11 series, rewriting history to remove the alien attack of the second season. (Yeah, that's right. Aliens invaded in a soccer manga.) Our heroes here are small-town nobodies in an endangered school football team, but if they can get a sponsor they'll be able to go to Tokyo!
It's also crazed fun. I enjoyed it much more than most sports anime. The juvenile target audience and broad-strokes writing make it, frankly, more entertaining.
Unfortunately, the episode feels compressed to the point of self-parody. Our hero (Asuto) goes to see the headmaster and gets told that the club will disband. This is the first he's heard of it, yet bulldozers and wrecking balls have already started smashing up the club grounds. Similarly, Asuto's mother gets sent to hospital and he goes to see her. Hilariously and almost immediately, she dies. She only has time for some sweetly spoken platitudes in a scene you've seen a million times before, but better paced.
That's within the first ten minutes of ep.1.
Then, there's a sponsorship offer! Our heroes go to Tokyo! "On one condition, although your chances are almost zero!" Then, continuing the craziness, their new school's student council says that if they're not deemed up to scratch, they'll be expelled! (Why are students in charge of expelling other students?)
I enjoyed all this madness. It's bold. It also has brilliant soccer. Jump thirty feet into the air on a tornado of fire, then kick the ball like a cannon! It looks like a laugh... but one episode of this is probably enough for me.
in gress
Ingress the Animation
Season 1
Episodes: 11 x 23 minutes
Keep watching: nope
One-line summary: humourless CGI gritty action
It's another Netflix CGI anime! Is it by Polygon Pictures? No, another studio that's just as bad. It's the kind of hard-bitten action show that Netflix seems to think will attract international audiences.
It has Very Serious Conversations from gunmen in black suits. It has action scenes, spewed out with no characterisation and nothing to make you care about what's happening. It has a shoot-out with a helicopter. It has a man who glows and emits lightning while talking like a chuunibyou. It has baddies who say "your false sense of righteousness has let you down."
Number of girls: 1 (Sarah Coppola)
Number of characters with a personality: 1 (Makoto Midorikawa)
Those might have been bright spots if I thought the episode was interested in them. It's based on a mobile phone game. No no no no no.
Irozuku Sekai
Iroduku: The World in Colors
Irozuku Sekai no Ashita kara
Season 1
Episodes: 13 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: yes
One-line summary: mature time travel story
I've since finished it and... it's beautiful, intelligent and a bit boring.
That was a great bit of anime. I'm definitely continuing. The only thing I dislike is the title transliteration of "Iroduku", which is a blind idiot spelling based on what you type to bring up the correct Japanese characters on a computer.
A colour-blind and nearly emotionless girl, Hitomi, is sent back in time sixty years by her grandmother. This causes a misunderstanding or two (e.g. she arrived in a boy's bedroom), but she manages to contact her family in this era.
I like the understated plot. People feel real. They react intelligently, rather than for comedy or genre convenience. The tone's what I liked best, combining fantasy elements with subtle characterisation. That's particularly surprising in a magical universe. In this show, magic can be bought in shops and put in beautifully coloured bottles on a shelf.
It's about Hitomi and her issues. She wasn't always colour-blind, which might be connected with her hatred of magic. This looks like a strong show.
"I'm fine on my own. If I say that often enough, it'll come true."
Isekai Izakaya
Isekai Izakaya: Japanese Food From Another World
Isekai Izakaya: Koto Aitheria no Izakaya Nobu
Isekai Izakaya "Nobu"
Season 1
Episodes: 24 x 15 minutes
Keep watching: no
One-line summary: selling Japanese food to fantasy world denizens
Didn't they make this show last year? Google, google... no, that was Isekai Shokudou, aka. "Restaurant to Another World". All the same, all pointless.
Two soldiers in a fantasy world visit a Japanese izakaya. No idea how it got there. One soldier's worried by the luxury of glass windows and drinking utensils, assuming that this implies high prices. His mind is then blown by the deliciousness of Japanese beer, edamame, etc.
There's nothing here. No story, no dramatic content. It's just anime characters having foodgasms and talking like restaurant critics. There's a live-action cooking segment afterwards, but otherwise this is the kind of pleasant void that's not even aiming high enough to be called "bad". It exists. That's all I can say for it.
Season 1
Episodes: 12 x 24 minutes
Keep watching: yes
One-line summary: time-travel mystery
I've since finished it and... eps.1-4 are okay, but the rest is dead.
I noticed three danger flags.
Flag #1: the internet doesn't seem that interested in it. (This doesn't guarantee badness, but it's not a good sign.)
Flag #2: I don't mind this episode, but it feels nebulous. I'd be stumped if you asked me what it's about or how the plot progressed. I quite enjoyed it, but an indeterminate ep.1 can often be an early warning of underwhelming writing in the show as a whole.
Flag #3: it's based on a visual novel, compressing 30-50 hours of gameplay into twelve episodes. (Mind you, it's a Frontwing game and they also did Grisaia, which I enjoyed.)
I'm still continuing, though. A naked amnesiac guy (Setsuna) wakes up on a beach. He only knows that he's travelled back in time to help a girl, save the world and kill someone. The island's mayor orders Setsuna to leave, but not because he's a nudist or an assassin. No, they don't like non-locals. There are also some girls, one of whom trips and lands face-first on Setsuna's naked crotch. That kind of dumb slapstick isn't what the episode's really about, though, which is slow-burning mysteries and clues. One girl says she'll die if sunlight hits her. Another wants to murder Setsuna, but is otherwise fluffy and cute and her attempts are endearingly rubbish. (At one point, he corrects her.)
Dramatically, it's a bit shapeless. Its mystery looks interesting. I'm half-expecting to end up disappointed, but I'll give it a whirl.
Junji Ito Collection
Ito Junji Collection
Season 1
Episodes: 12 x 24 minutes + two OVAs
Keep watching: I wouldn't if it weren't Junji Ito
One-line summary: horror anthology
I've since finished it and... I bet it's not as good as the manga.
I need more Ito Junji! This is the first anime adaptation of his work, apart from the very ignorable Gyo. I pretty much hated this first episode, but never mind. I'll watch the series anyway. It's an anthology, so there will be good stuff too, e.g. apparently at least one Tomie episode.
There are two stories:
Souichi is a self-obsessed little shit who puts nails in his mouth and regards the rest of humanity as slug-like peasants. He can do magic, so he curses people. I found him really annoying. Some reviewers say he's funny, but personally I just found him dull and wanted him off my screen.
This story is about two minutes long. Its ending is an "eh"?
I'm already wondering if the show might have a problem with endings, but maybe it works better in manga form? (Hell Doll Funeral, I'm looking at you.) I'll continue, but I'll be fast-forwarding if Souichi returns.
iya na kao sarenagara opantsu
Iya na Kao sare nagara Opantsu Misete Moraitai
Season 1
Episodes: 6 x 4-5 minutes
Keep watching: ugh
One-line summary: unpleasant yet tame ecchi
You're the owner of an English country house. You approach one of the maids and make her show you her underwear. Even without the fact that she used to admire you and now thinks you're scum, you're a boss making his employee do something sexual against her will.