Winter Anime 2019 - Thoughts/Awards

D1tchd1gger

Railgun
Seeing as I have finished the season, and @crashmatt is slacking off 😜, I thought I'd make the seasonal thread for Winter 2019.

My general thoughts are that either I'm getting a bit more critical or this season was pretty average dispite what I thought was a pretty strong start and actually enjoying quite a lot of what I watched. Only 2 shows got 8 or above with another halfway through that is currently sitting on an 8 in Dororo.

Before the awards here is what I watched:

2 cour series (in order)
Hinomaru Sumo 7
SAO: Alicization 7

I found HS overall more fun to watch.

2 cour continuing
Dororo 8*

Has been very enjoyable so far with good action and the odd heavy subject touched. I hope it can continue the way it started.

3 cour continuing
Karakuri Circus 6*

The second cour was a bit repetitive of the first with another flashback arc and a return to a previous location to fight a similar fight to the end of the first cour.

Shorts (in order)
Rinshi!! Ekoda-chan 6
Katana Maidens ~ Mini Toji 5

The experimentation (and the humour) of Ekoda-chan won out over the hit and miss humour of Mini Toji.

1 cour sequels (in order)
Mob Psycho 100 II 9
Kemono Friends s2 6

One improved, one diminished.

1 Cour Series Ranking:
  1. Kaguya-Sama: Love is War 8
  2. The Quintessential Quintuplets Hi 7
  3. The Promised Neverland Hi 7
  4. Boogiepop and Others Hi 7
  5. Endro~! Mid 7
  6. WATATEN: An Angel Flew Down to Me Lo 7
  7. Domestic Girlfriend Hi 6
  8. The Magnificent KOTOBUKI Hi 6
  9. Girly Air Force Mid 6
  10. How Clumsy You Are Ueno-san Mid 6
  11. Magical Girl Spec Ops Asuka Lo 6
So my top new 1 cour show is the one I was going to skip!

Seasonal Awards
Music
OST - Boogiepop and Others

As I was watching the last 2 arcs of Boogiepop the last 2 days I kept thinking to myself "I really like this tune!". Nothing else has particularly jumped out at me apart from the classical Japanese music in Dororo.

OP Song - shadowgraph by MYTH & ROID (Boogiepop)
Pretty tough choice with the OP Songs for The Promised Neverland and Kaguya-Sama running it close and plenty more I liked.

ED Song - Whiteout by Riko Azuna (Boogiepop)
Not as hard to pick with only Dororo pushing it. Kaguya-Sama would be in the running, but we'll come to that in the sequence awards.

Production
OP Sequence - Dororo

Another tough one. Second was WATATEN (I'll put it in fav sequence thread) and others in the mix were The Quintessential Quintuplets, Mob Psycho 100 s2, and Domestic Girlfriend.

ED Sequence - Kaguya-Sama
Again not as tough as the OP and again WATATEN came in second and the only other competition really was Boogiepop and itself with that dance in the second episode.

Writing - Mob Psycho 100 s2
Brilliant character development in this season.

Episode - MP100 Episode 5 - Discord: Choices
Ditto the comment on the writing. There are quite a few other episodes to pick from this show this season, but this still sticks out.

Animation - Mob Psycho 100 s2
If you were to look at stills from this show you would probably say it looks bad/odd, but the animation (and writing) proves that a show doesn't necessarily need to be a looker to be top tier.

Sound - The Magnificent KOTOBUKI
I probably wouldn't give this award every season as it's not something I normally think about when watching stuff, but the sound in this show, especially in the dogfights puts you right in the action with the strain of metal, the engine noises and the guns going off.

Character Design - Endro~!
Nothing stood out too much this season. Kaguya-Sama had some good designs and The Quintessential Quintuplets did well to make 5 identical girls look different enough to tell them apart, but I just liked the Endro designs the best for their overall cuteness, especially Nao-chan.

Characters
Best New Girl

Until the winner came along I thought I might have to pick a loli for the winner either design wise Nao-chan (I think she's a lot older than she looks) or age wise Emma (probably looks a bit older than she is) or both in the WATATEN girls (all different, all fun characters) and a final one that might be a spoiler. But:
Chika Fujiwara
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Best New Boy
In comparison there was very little to choose from in this category. As Mob and friends can't compete in this category it came down to Ray or Norman from The Promised Neverland. In the end I went for Norman as his plan bested Ray's, even from beyond the grave?!

VA - Rio Suzuko (Dororo in Dororo)
She sounds like a natural on her second only anime at the age of 13/14 (her wiki page shows she's done loads of other stuff though including dubbing Laura/X-23 in Logan) and has had to carry the show for the vast majority of the time due to the other MC being a mute!
Shout out to Aoi Yuuki for Touka and Boogiepop and Setsuo Itou for Mob (he's basically also playing 2 roles with normal Mob and the 100% Mob).

ANIME
If it wasn't obvious from most of the production awards, it's Mob Psycho 100 s2. Brilliant character progression, comedy and action.
 
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D1tchd1gger

Railgun
@D1tchd1gger Did you skip My Roommate is a Cat? One of the better new shows of the season. Also Run With the Wind from the previous one.
Yep. The premise didn't really grab me on the former and I was already watching 2 sports shows last season (both about Japanese sports) and running, again, didn't really grab me on the latter.
 

thedoctor2016

Diclonius
Im only gonna say my biggest disappointment was Dragon Yuri (Mysteria Friends), Because I didn't think it was gonna be Ecchi and Yuri but my god was it. Leg shots, moaning, big tits and I could only stand 3 eps till i dropped it. Its so sad its linked to Rage of bahamut the other two as it couldn't be more different. Only redeeming factor was each ep was only 13 mins long and it looked alright.
Will also include the Best anime of the season imo which is Run with the wind/MP100.
 
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Arveene

School Idol
I will make a single defence of Mysteria Friends: it did seem to get over the ecchi and actually become halfway wholesome. For like, the last three eps. But yes, it was terrible.

I'd also agree with @thedoctor2016 on Run With the Wind - probably my favourite of the season (excluding Date A Live S3 which I view with rose-tinted glasses and therefore am automatically disqualifying).

I do find it amusing we have a commonality with Kaguya-sama, @D1tchd1gger , I didn't watch it until around ep 6 but then it became one of my favourites of the season :p

Sounds like I should pick up Dororo. And think about Boogiepop, and get around to watching MB100's first season. Urgh, too much to watch :p
 

D1tchd1gger

Railgun
Sounds like I should pick up Dororo. And think about Boogiepop, and get around to watching MB100's first season.
Definately recommend MP100 season 1 as well (I gave it 8).

And it's probably best that you waited till after it finished before watching Boogiepop as definitely better binged rather than watched weekly. All the arcs are named/numbered on Crunchyroll and there are 4 of 3, 6, 4 and 5 episodes respectively. The third one is a prequel and probably best watched first as stuff in the second (and first) come up in the forth.
 

Arveene

School Idol
And it's probably best that you waited till after it finished before watching Boogiepop as definitely better binged rather than watched weekly. All the arcs are named/numbered on Crunchyroll and there are 4 of 3, 6, 4 and 5 episodes respectively. The third one is a prequel and probably best watched first as stuff in the second (and first) come up in the forth.
Well that's as... clear as mud :p

Good ol' creative episode ordering. Thanks for the advice on that.
 

Peachy

Bumpkin
AUKN Staff
Love the love for all things music in Boogiepop, felt that aspect was underappreciated within the wider anime community.

Kaguya > Chika btw ;)
 

ActionFaust

Vampire Ninja
Ah the thread finally makes it's appearance. Planning on binging Real Girl S2, Kotobuki, and Roommate Cat to finish off the season before posting my ranking/awards.
 

Demelza

Adventuring Alchemist
AUKN Staff
What I watched:

The Promised Neverland
The Rising of the Shield Hero
That Time I Got Reincarnated Into a Slime
Run with the Wind
Fairy Tail
Kaguya-sama: Love is War
My Roomate is a Cat
The Morose Mononokean II
The Quintessential Quintuplets
Real Girl Season 2
Domestic Girlfriend
Sword Art Online Alicization

Top three (discounting the continuing series):
Domestic Girlfriend
My Roommate is a Cat
Promised Neverland

I jumped on My Roommate is a Cat really late because I wasn't interested at the start and I only changed my mind after @Linkachu constantly talking it up. Run with the Wind and Slime were firm favourites of mine for the continuing series and I also really enjoyed Shield Hero despite all the hate.


Biggest disappointment for me was Kaguya-sama because it was really enjoyable up until the home visit storyline which turned me off it hard. If it had kept it to the one episode I might have forgiven it, but when it spilled into the next I was just sat watching it with a :| expression. Might pick up the manga eventually, but unsure right now.
 

crashmatt

Death Scythe
Apologies for not setting this up it just slipped my mind. Anyway it's been a good Winter season.

Great/Awesome

Dororo
its still ongoing but so far it's been brilliant, bleak and utterly compelling. Shame it's stuck on Amazon. 9/10

Quinicential Quintuplets
i absolutely LOVED this. Best harem comedy I've seen in years and it doesn't rely on fanservice to develop its characters. Needs a season 2. 9/10

Love is war
Despite the very basic premise it made it work Chika was such a great character. I'd be onboard for more. 8/10

Good/ Average

That time I got reincarnated as a slime
it started fantastic but after the orc lord episode it started to go down hill towards the mediocre children arc. Hope season 2 introduced some drama and a credible antagonist. 7/10

Kakegururi S2
More of the same really, entertaining but not something with any rewatch value. 7/10

Date Alive S3
more Date Alive is good but animation issued dragged it down. Still fun 7/10

Girly Air force
It's pretty stupid and the CGI was shonky bit it wasn't quite as bad as I expected. 5/10

SAO Alicization
some stellar animation and interesting concepts regarding artificial intelligence. I do have a soft spot for SAO. Not without its flaws but damn, that cliffhanger at the end....8/10

Crushing dissapointment is of the season

Index S3
Dear oh dear what a mess. Poor directing, massive bloated cast of nothing characters and rushed content. Trainwreck 4/10

Dropped
A promised Neverland
Did nothing for me unfortunately
 
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Peachy

Bumpkin
AUKN Staff
I'll give my two cents, why not!

What I watched:
Reincarnated as a Slime
Rinshi! Ekoda-Chan
My Roommate is a Cat
Promised Neverland
The Quintessential Quintuplets
Boogiepop
Kaguya-Sama: Love Is War
Mob Psycho 100 Season 2
A Certain Magical Index Season 3
Jojo's Part 5
Shield Hero
Dororo
Karakuri Circus
Black Clover

Top:
Mob Psycho 100 Season 2
Kaguya-Sama
Reincarnated as a Slime
Promised Neverland
Dororo

Best Music:
Boogiepop overall.
Dororo & Kaguya in there for OP & ED.

Best Episode:
Mob Psycho 100 S2....Episode 5 I think it was.
There was also this one episode in Ekoda-Chan that I won't be forgetting anytime soon...if you watched, you know the one ..

Best Male - My Slime Overlord, duh. Norman from Neverland & Bruno Bucciarati from Jojo Part 5 can fit in here too.
Best Female - Emma - Promised Neverland. No question, love her.

Bottom:
Index Season 3 - So much disappointment :( Luckily I'm reading the novels & am looking forward to learning what the heck actually went on.
Black Clover
 
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HWR

Symphogear
AUKN Staff
I’ll throw my hat into the ring.

Great/Excellent
Mob Psycho 100 S2

A strong second season with sublime animation and a sense of progression for the characters and world.

My Roommate is a Cat
An often-touching SoL that provided poignant themes and fun Haru-centric segments.

Run with the Wind
A great sports anime that focused on balancing a large cast and showing their development as individuals and as a team. One of the best sports anime I’ve seen recently.

Dororo
Brutal, bleak but also atmospheric, this has been great so far. Looking forward to seeing the second half.

Very good
Boogiepop and Others

Boogiepop, though confusing to follow sometimes, offers a unique experience. I’m looking forward to rewatching it in the future.

Endro~!
I do like a bit of fantasy, and throw in a fun cast and SoL elements and they even put in some lore with the spell system.

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 5: Golden Wind
Each episode offers that weird but likeable JoJo vibe, though I’m still undecided on how this series stacks up against the previous four parts.

Kaguya-Sama: Love is War
Very good fun, and I reckon that ED with Chika will be remembered the most.

The Promised Neverland
A tension-driven thriller of an anime that I enjoyed for the most part but found a bit slow in places. Season 2 should be interesting and different.

The Rising of the Shield Hero
A solid Isekai. I’ve been reading the manga and am looking forward to seeing some arcs realised in animated form.

Good
Black Clover

This keeps chugging along, it’s not a great series but it has improved over time.

Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
The Mitsuki arc was alright but dragged in places, and the series is generally, for me anyway, in the good territory. I enjoy watching it every Sunday.

How Clumsy you are, Miss Ueno
Lewd and varied in its absurd premises each week. Not sure how much rewatch value it would have though.

The Magnificent KOTOBUKI
Though the plot at times was a bit off I enjoyed the dogfights and action throughout, and the 3D animation suited it. Shame the characters didn’t look amazing some of the time.

Average/Decent
Bermuda Triangle: Colourful Pastrale

Pretty laid back and generally very pleasant to sit though. It was nothing special but I had some fun each week with it.

Date A Live III
A season of parts, some decent and others very average. Overall it was decent.

Fairy Tail: Final Season
I’m not quite as engaged with this final arc as I had been with the series before but it still has its moments and charm.

Girly Air Force
Some good ideas that weren’t quite utilised as well as they could have been.

Grimm Notes: The Animation
Another series with some good arcs and others that I didn’t really care for.

Mediocre:
Mysteria Friends

This was an odd one for me. My rating for it was purely based on some of the nice atmosphere and quieter episodes, the rest of it though was pretty dull. I didn’t dislike it as much as others though.

Disappointing:
A Certain Magical Index III

The more I think back on this the less I remember enjoying. It has its moments for sure but it looks like they crammed too much into the 26 episodes allotted. A shame really.

AOTS: Run with the Wind
 
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ActionFaust

Vampire Ninja
Late to the party.

Excellent
BanG Dream! Season 2 - A massive improvement over season 1. As a fan of the game and short series it was great to see familiar references to both in characters and humour. The change to CG was actually a good decision since it looks pretty good and works well for band performances. Season 3 is in good hands.

Mob Psycho 100 II - Bones returns with yet another great season of MP100! As usual it features the amazing animation and character animation we've come to love. Yes I did have my problems with the pacing of one particular episode but putting that aside this has been a welcome return to form.

Great
That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime (2nd Cour) - Same great stuff as with the first cour though the last arc was a bit of a step down. Still good fun and it sure is great they're doing a season 2

The Quintessential Quintuplets - For once a harem comedy that's actually legit great. Characters are all very likeable, especially Futarou who's been a pretty fun MC. Looking forward to a season 2.

The Rising of the Shield Hero (1st Cour) - While I'm only halfway through the 1st Cour (at the time of writing) I've gotta say it's been a pretty great show so far. Naofumi makes for a great protagonist and his development has been great to watch, especially in episode 4. The music has also been great as expected of Kevin Penkin, composer for Made in Abyss.

Kaguya-sama: Love is War - Not only is it a fun comedy, the production was unexpectedly good to an almost SHAFT-like level with over the top animation improving on the comedy.

Boogiepop and Others - After having rewatched the first arc and watching each arc in one go I feel that while this series is pretty solid, it definitely would be more suited to being a Netflix series. Aoi Yuuki's performance as Boogiepop and the music were clear highlights.

Good
Mysteria Friends
- While it may not have much in the way of writing it was still a pretty relaxing series to watch and provided some great art production and music. Looking forward to whatever Cygames Pictures have next.

Dropped
Magical Girl Spec Ops Asuka
The Promised Neverland (may pick up the manga)

Leftovers (Curse Netflix and Amazon for most of these!)
Kemurikusa
Dororo
Kakegurui xx
The Magnificent Kotobuki
Real Girl Season 2
My Roommate is a Cat

Seasonal Awards
Best OP - Mob Psycho 100 II


Best ED - Boogiepop and Others

Best Soundtrack - Boogiepop and Others - Thanks based Kensuke Ushio!

Best Writing - Mob Psycho 100 II - The character development of this series is still so damn good.

Best Characters - BanG Dream! Season 2 - A really fun ensemble of characters.

Best Animation - Mob Psycho 100 II - It truly was great to see this series return for the animation alone truly cementing Mob Psycho 100 as one of the most visually amazing series in recent years. Speaking of which...

Best Episode - Mob Psycho 100 II Episode 5 - Thanks based Hakuyu Go!

Best Boy - Shigeo Kageyama - His development since the first season has been so rewarding to watch.

Best Girl - Tae Hanazono - Pretty great when my favourite character from the game gets their own story arc.

Anime of the Season - BanG Dream! Season 2 - I'm biased as a fan of the game but even so this was a pretty solid season!

New Segment: Best of the Backlog
While not of this season I thought I'd give a special mention to some notable shows I've watched from the backlog.
  • Super Dimensional Fortress Macross
  • Macross Plus
  • Sound! Euphonium
  • March Comes in Like a Lion
  • Girls und Panzer
  • Yurikuma Arashi
  • Princess Principal
  • Symphogear
  • Arakawa Under the Bridge
 
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