Fall 2014 Season Preview [ongoing]

Here are the likely candidates for what I will be covering for the upcoming Fall 2014 Anime Season.  These are shows that look somewhat interesting to me and I will blog at least the first episode of.  This list may grow as the season slowly is beginning this week.  I will keep you all updated soon on this.

PSYCHO-PASS Season 2

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  • PRODUCTION STUDIO: Tatsunoko Productions
  • DIRECTOR: Naoyoshi Shiotani
  • ORIGINAL CREATOR: Gen Urobuchi
  • SERIES COMPOSITION: Tow Ubukata
  • CHARACTER DESIGNER: Kyoji Asano
  • MUSIC: Yuugo Kanno

Noitamina I am sure glad you’ve picked up a fairly successful series for your lineup this upcoming season.  The programming block had some very amazing anime series to show this year: Gin no Saji, Samurai Flamenco, Ping-Pong the Animation and Zankyou no Terror.  Hopefully this second season and Naoshi Arakawa’s Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso will provide some powerful stories to an otherwise loosely intriguing Fall season.

I am very excited about this second season considering how the first season ranks in my Top 10 Best Anime.  Looking at the previews for this it looks great and with the director back from the first 22 episodes, it will be great to see what he does after the Sibyl System is exposed to Akane.  Problem however doesn’t lie with the director at all, but the writer Tow Ubukata [Ghost in the Shell: Arise, Fafner] and the animation studio role is handed off to Tastunoko Productions?  What?  If I recall Production I.G. had said in an interview right before Psycho-Pass in 2012 had aired that this was going to be their flagship series– taking back the throne of sci-fi just as the original Ghost in the Shell series had done.  A bit worried about the style that made Psycho-Pass so strong might emerge entirely different here.

LIKELY TO BLOG: 85%


MUSHISHI ZOKU SHOU [PART 2]

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  • PRODUCTION STUDIO: Animation Studio Artland
  • DIRECTOR: Hiroshi Nagahama
  • ORIGINAL CREATOR: Yuki Urushibara
  • SERIES COMPOSITION: Hiroshi Nagahama
  • CHARACTER DESIGNER: Yoshihiko Umakoshi
  • MUSIC: Toshio Masuda

 

Fantastic! Everyone of the staff that worked on the first season and first half of Zoku Shou will be returning for this!  Can’t wait to see what chapters the anime decides to do here, as the first twelve episodes were amazing!  Simple art, traditional musical score, and an engaging relaxing collection of stories that are pulled into an episodic format!  Love these kinds of series and I am sure this return will be a great addition to the Fall season!

LIKELY TO BLOG: 100%


 

KISEIJUU: SEI NO KAKURITSU

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  • PRODUCTION STUDIO: Madhouse
  • DIRECTOR: Kenichi Shimizu
  • ORIGINAL CREATOR: Hitoshi Iwaaki
  • SERIES COMPOSITION: Shoji Yonemura
  • CHARACTER DESIGNER: Tadashi Hiramatsu
  • MUSIC: Ken Arai

 

The manga to this horror sci-fi series is very good, and it has been quite some time since we’ve had a show like this.  Aliens slowly invade Earth, parasitic creatures that develop a relationship with its host.  High school boy Shinichi Izumi is infected by Migi that attaches itself to his right hand.  Soon they find themselves caught in a strife between humans and the parasites over the takeover of Earth!  Yes a 2-cour horror anime!  The plot is fantastic and with the writer of Guin Saga on board at least certain the pacing here will be adequately smooth.  The issue is with a director I’ve never heard of.  Is this Kenichi’s first time in the director’s chair and if so can he pull off a strong adaptation here?  Do have to say I love the promotional art this series has, really neat looking.

LIKELY TO BLOG: 80%


 

GARO: HONÕ NO KOKUIN

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  • PRODUCTION STUDIO: MAPPA
  • DIRECTOR: Yuichiro Hayashi
  • ORIGINAL CREATOR: Keita Amemiya
  • SERIES COMPOSITION: Yasuko Kobayashi
  • CHARACTER DESIGNER: Toshiyuki Kanno
  • MUSIC: MONACA

 

PLOT: The story of the anime begins when the king’s adviser launches a witch hunt, which endangers the Makai Knights and Makai Priests, who are supposed to protect people. A Makai Priest who has been condemned to die at the stake gives birth to a child, Leon Lewis. The child is rescued by his father, a Makai Knight, but never meets his mother. When he grows up he inherits the Gold Armor as a descendant of the Gold Knights. Meanwhile the king’s adviser has taken over the country as the king has become ill, and Prince Alfonso has been driven out with his mother. He comes seeking the legendary Gold Knight in hopes of retaking his kingdom.

This is going to be very interesting to see how this anime pans out.  Another amazing director on board to do an action series of this caliber! The creator of Shaman King doing the character designs?!  The script writer of Casshern Sins, Shingeki no Kyojin, and the Trigun: Badlands Rumble film makes me more intrigued to see how much of the material he can adapt here.  Not too pleased that MONACA is doing the music to this, as they’ve already done one series this year [Captain Earth] while the soundtrack was solid, it all sounded very similar.  The best staff member working on this has got to be its source material: the original creator being the same guy who did Mahou Shoujotai!  Talk about an astounding fantasy anime–  one that utilized 7 minutes of airtime each episode to flesh out maturing teenage witches into a mystical and engrossing world!  Hope this works in MAPPA’s favor here.  If there was an issue I’d say it be that MAPPA IS going to be doing two shows this season, could see some loss of quality by the budget this season from them doing this and Shingeki no Bahamut Genesis.

LIKELY TO BLOG: 85%


 

SHIGATSU WA KIMI NO USO

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  • PRODUCTION STUDIO: A-1 Pictures
  • DIRECTOR: Kyohei Ishiguro
  • ORIGINAL CREATOR: Naoshi Arakawa
  • SERIES COMPOSITION: Takao Yoshioka
  • CHARACTER DESIGNER: Yukiko Aikei
  • MUSIC: Masaru Yokoyama

If any of my readers haven’t noticed I am a huge fan of anything Noitamina.  I always give these broadcast productions a shot as some of the time they are gems of a series.  The second entry in Noitamina’s fall lineup, and one that will be a romance anime.  It is about time we get a story like Nodame Cantabille that features music as a motivational push for its main characters to get together.  I have yet to read the manga to this but I am very excited about this series for two reasons: It has the music composer of Arakawa Under the Bridge which had a fantastic soundtrack and 2: It’s a story that brings in musical talent to develop its characters.  This doesn’t mean though that I’m whole-heartedly on board with this project as I’ve got a few problems with it.  A-1 Pictures loves to make their projects very shiny to look at with the more recent Sword Art Online II and Aldnoah.Zero, even Anohana and Senkou no Night Raid 1931 had very smooth animation yet there isn’t a whole lot more to it like what BONES has done with Space Dandy, and Masaaki Yuasa does with his anime series.  Also, why is that these romance drama anime typically feature teenagers?  Hope this doesn’t turn out to be like Kimi ni Todoke filled with tons of talking and no progression of the plot.

LIKELY TO BLOG: 70%


SHINGEKI NO BAHAMUT GENESIS

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  • PRODUCTION STUDIO: MAPPA
  • DIRECTOR: Keiichi Satou
  • ORIGINAL CREATOR: Cygames
  • SERIES COMPOSITION: Keiichi Hasegawa
  • CHARACTER DESIGNER: Naoyuki Onda
  • MUSIC: Yoshihiro Ike

I am more excited to see this than even Psycho-Pass’ second season.  The director of the films Asura and Karas, and TV anime Tiger & Bunny!  This will be great because we’ve also got the animators that did Zankyou no Terror and Sakamichi no Apollon doing the animation to this.  The character designs look very classic considering how it’s the same animator that did the designs for the Berserk films and the 90’s space opera Sol Bianca.  Definitely going to keep a lookout on this one for sure!  Oh and we couldn’t have had a better team on this:  Ike’s the one who did the music to Ergo ProxyFREEDOMKaras, and Reideen! Fantastic!

LIKELY TO BLOG: 95%


SANZOKU MUSUME NO RONJA

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  • PRODUCTION STUDIO: Polygon Pictures and Studio Chibli
  • DIRECTOR: Goro Miyazaki
  • ORIGINAL CREATOR: Astrid Lindgren
  • SERIES COMPOSITION: Hiroyuki Kawasaki
  • CHARACTER DESIGNER: Naoyuki Onda
  • MUSIC: Satoshi Takebe and Hiroko Taniyama

What is more intriguing about this series than the actual plot itself is how it came to be.  Nippon Animation worked on a few World Masterpiece Theatre series alongside Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata and after one of their top producers passed away, there was a very long absence of a director or writer adapting classic children’s series.  I’m talking series from the 60’s to early 90’s like Dog of FlandersAnne of Green Gables, Tom Sawyer and Katri, Girl of the Meadows.  All fantastic series that some ran for quite a long time, but here we’re finally breaking the barrier of children’s stories, with Rona.

Ronja is the only daughter of Mattis, a bandit leader who lives in a castle in the middle of a large forest. When Ronja grows old enough, she ventures into the forest to interact the strange and magical creatures that live there. She learns to live in the forest through her own strength, with the occasional rescue from her parents. Ronja’s life begins to change, however, when she happens upon a boy her own age named Birk. [~Taken from AnimeNewsNetwork]

So we’re finally getting a children’s adventure series but the part of the crew I find strange on this is Polygon Pictures, the same animators of Sidonia no Kishi, which ended up with some very obscure results in the quality of the show.  Aside from the decision to pick CG animators Hiroyuki Kawasaki is great at writing solid animated works:  Sakura WarsHyouge Mono [this is one of Bee-Train’s best works right here] and Tsubasa: ReserVoir CHRoNiCLES.   I will be very curious to see how this show turns out. It’s too bad that Chibli is in a bad state after Hayao Miyazaki’s retirement, I hope this show can redeem some of the qualities that made that studio develop some very powerful stories that captured the hearts of children and adults.

LIKELY TO BLOG: 80%


 

 

2 thoughts on “Fall 2014 Season Preview [ongoing]

  1. We’re watching many of the same shows. Psycho-Pass 1 was a genuinely compelling series and I’m excited to see more. Also, I feel that Tow Ubukata is a good writer.

    Parasyte looks like it will be another great title considering that it is getting major backing alongside the live-action movies. Madhouse are animating and it’s based on a great source so I’m signed up for this.

    Shingeki no Bahamut Genesis looks stunning in all of the PVs I have seen and MAPPA have been created some awesome visuals for Zankyou no Terror.

    Also… Samurai Flamenco was horrible. It broke my heart when it became a genuine tokusatsu show.

    1. I agree completely. But in regards to Samurai Flamenco the reason I enjoyed it so much was how it was able to pull of tons of genre shifts all the while keeping up with this vision that superheroes have in tokusatsu series. Silly and over the top, but that’s what Samurai Flamenco was trying to be, and it pulled it off pretty well. Do have to say that the ending would have been better if a director like the one shown in one of the earlier episodes had yelled “cut!” Haha, that would have made a lot of those strange From Beyond and King Torture episodes have a more realistic feel to them. A TV show within an anime series.

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