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Jun 032011
 

After the hit series known as Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica in the previous Winter season, I’m curious as to if there will be any anime that could beat it this year. While I do see some potentially strong contenders in Fall 2011, we have to get through the Summer season first :P

Anyways, believe it or not, there are only a few more weeks worth of Spring anime left, with the Summer 2011 season coming up right afterward. There are a grand total of 26 or so new series debuting this Summer season, which is apparently above average in comparison to previous Summer seasons.

As for the obligatory statement for every season preview that I must make, I can spy a few shows that look interesting, but you know there’s only so much you can get from brief preview videos and summaries. Special thanks to Steve for all his help with this Season preview.

Either ways, continue reading ahead for a sneak peek at the upcoming season shows, preview videos, a basic overview of their plots, and for our impressions of each show.

Note: All information and images are sourced from Anime News Network, MyAnimeList, Moonphase, Japanese wikipedias, various season preview charts, and the official websites of each series. There may be inaccuracies in this preview, and will be updated as new information is revealed about these new shows.

Also, for those reading this through a feed aggregator (Google reader, etc), the preview videos may not show up through the feed aggregator. You should go to the post directly if want to see the preview videos.

Usagi Drop (うさぎドロップ)

English Name: Bunny Drop
Air Date:
July 7th, 2011
Animation Studio: Production I.G.
Channel to be aired on: Fuji TV at 24:25
Official Site: http://www.usagi-drop.tv/
Notable Seiyu: Matsuura Ayu, Tsuchida Hiroshi, Ueda Kana, Sakamoto Maaya, Ohara Sayaka
Genres: Slice of Life, Josei

Overview:

Noitamina anime series based on a josei manga by Unita Yumi. Going home for his grandfather’s funeral, thirty-year-old bachelor Daikichi is surprised to discover that the old man had an illegitimate child with a younger lover, now 6-year old Kaga Rin. The rest of his family is equally shocked and embarrassed by this surprise development, and not one of them wants anything to do with the silent, very shy little girl. In a fit of anger against his irresponsibly speaking family members, Daikichi decides to take her in himself. But as Daikichi soon learns, there are many positives and negatives of raising a young girl. A simple, cute tale that touches upon the joys of raising children, and the happy and worrisome moments that come along with it.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 90% – Usagi drop is one of the two Noitamina shows set to air this season, and for those that don’t already know, Noitamina shows tend to be quite good (check their track record on wikipedia if you don’t believe me). The basic premise of this series is that a male protagonist takes care of a cute little girl. As cute and adorable of a premise this is, the story is actually quite good. I read the first few chapters of the manga, and the story is really simple, yet heartwarming. The director here, Kanta Kaimei, is a bit new to the directing scene, with his only other directing experience being for the Tales of Vesperia movie (which was actually quite decent). Here I really think the story will shine, though this is just based on my experience with the manga. Ah, and I forgot to mention, the animation studio behind this series (Production I.G.) has animated plenty of excellent shows, including series such as Kimi ni Todoke, Bungaku Shoujo, Eden of the East, Break Blade, and FLCL.

Steve: 85% – After the success of Eden of the East in 2009, studio Production I.G. finally returns to Noitamina with Usagi Drop, a slice-of-life manga aimed at a Josei audience. Even though the manga is quite different from Production I.G.’s high school romance oriented Kimi ni Todoke, I have a good feeling that the studio would handle this particular kind of material without any problem. (Recently, Production I.G. failed to deliver a quality work with Moshidora, but I think that was due to inadequate amount of budget and time assigned to them from their management…) However, it slightly worries me that the director, Kanta Kaimei-san, is quite inexperienced and the seiyuus for the two main characters, Rin and Daikichi, haven’t had much experience with voice acting before. I like the decision to use a real 10-year-old girl for playing Rin in Usagi Drop, but we’ll have to see if she is really up to the task.

Preview Video:

Creditless OP theme:

Blood-C

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 7th, 2011
Animation Studio: Production I.G.
Channel to be aired on: MBS/TBS at 25:40
Official Site: http://www.blood-c.jp/
Notable Seiyu: Mizuki Nana
Genres: Action, Mystery, Drama, Horror, Vampire, Supernatural

Overview:

An original Blood anime project with story and original character designs by Clamp. Teropterids are evil beasts which pose as humans and live only to drink human blood. There are groups dedicated to destroying them in the human world. A brooding and mysterious girl named Saya is the best teropterid slayer there is, and now, in 1960s Japan, she is sent to a U.S. army base which has been reported to be infested.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 70% – Blood-C will probably be either a hit-or-miss series. Considering this is an anime original CLAMP series, I am expecting a pretty decent story. Based on the previous entries into the Blood series though, I’m not quite sure of what to expect here. The Blood series have generally been aimed towards girl audiences, and although they have had pretty good character development and action sequences, they have had their own set of rather noticeable flaws. On the plus side, the director (Tsutomu Mizushima), has worked with hit Clamp series before (such as XXXHolic and Kobato), and those series were pretty well received. Honestly speaking, while most of the production staff behind this series is extremely talented, my main worry here is the actual story. There is little info available about the story, which is why I’m slightly worried this could turn into a generic vampire series. At least animation probably won’t be an issue, considering Production I.G. is backing this series.

Steve: 80% – The fact that Mizuki Nana will be playing the main character of Blood-C (if it feels like she hasn’t played any main characters recently, it’s probably due to the fact that the cast of main female characters are now dominated by someone with initials H.K. -_-;;) and singing the main theme song (she did it recently with Dog Days, but the show was anything but disappointment;;) really excites me. A great addition here is the director Mizushima Tsutomu-san, as he has recently done a brilliant job of directing shows like Yondemasuyo, Azazel-san (probably one of the most underrated comedy show in this spring season…), Shinryaku! Ika-Musume, as well as some older shows like Ookiku Furikabutte, and Bokusatsu Tenshi Dokuro-chan (;;). It’s very hard to predict how exactly Blood-C will turn out to be, but it seems to have potential to become one of the top shows in this summer season.

Preview Video 01:

Preview Video 02:

NO.6

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 7th, 2011
Animation Studio: Bones
Channel to be aired: Fuji TV at 25:15
Official Site: http://www.no-6.jp/
Notable Seiyu: Kaji Yuuki, Hosoya Yoshimasa
Genres: Sci-fi, Josei, adventure

Overview:

Noitamina anime series. The story takes place in the utopian city “NO.6″ in 2013. Shion was judged as having “highest-ranked intelligence” when he was two years old, and thus was allowed to live in the luxurious area “Cronos”. On his twelfth birthday, he meets a beautiful boy called “Nezumi,” who had escaped from a reformatory after being shot in his shoulder. Shion helps treat and protect him, but as a result of his “bad deed”, the Public Security Bureau deprived Shion of all his privileges and expelled him from Cronos to “Lost Town”. Four years after being sent to the lost town, Shion once again runs into Nezumi. After a string of sudden deaths resulting in scientifically impossible corpses, Shion is now on the run, and will soon discover the dark secrets of this utopian city.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 75%- No.6 is the other Noitamina slated for this season, and considering Noitamina’s stellar track record of great series, this is an automatic must watch for me. Not to mention, Bones is the animation studio behind this series (which is a definitely plus). For those that don’t know, Bones has a reputation for it’s high quality animation, and has been behind several major series such as Full Metal Alchemist, Star Driver, Gosick, Eureka Seven, and more. Staff-wise, we have Kenji Nagasaki as the director here, where this is his first time as a series director (which pretty much means anything goes). The scriptwriter here, Seishi Minakami, has written for other sci-fi-esque anime, such as Birdy Decode 2 and Shigurui, and fits quite well with this particular story. As for the actual story behind this series, based on my brief taste-test with the manga, the setting and plot are well executed, though character development was a bit lacking initially. Considering I read just the intro though, the sci-fi was scenario is rather well done, and the characters do seem like they’ll get interesting.

Steve: 80% – Along with Production I.G., studio Bones goes back to Noitamina time-slot with an adaption of a Josei manga, No.6. For some reason, the plot of No.6 feels awfully close to a early Noitamina show from Bones called Jyu-Oh-Sei, which had intriguing setting in the beginning but ended up having a shallow and flawed shoujo-type story. But it’s probably irrelevant now as Bones has grown to become a solid animation studio after declaring independence from studio Sunrise, and most Shoujo/Josei Noitamina shows also have had enough appeal to male audiences. There’s a slight Boy’s Love potential with the plot which could turn off some viewers, but that will be quite unlikely and I have a confidence that Bones won’t mess up with this show.

Preview Video 01:

Preview Video 02:

Kamisama Dolls (神様ドォルズ)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 5, 2011
Animation Studio: Brain’s Base
Channel to be aired on: TV Tokyo at 25:30
Official Site: http://www.kamisama-anime.jp/
Notable Seiyu: Okamoto Nobuhiko, Kayano Ai, Sawashiro Miyuki, Kimura Ryouhei
Genres: Action, Drama, Supernatural, Seinen

Overview:

Kyouhei moved away to Tokyo from his old village to get away from the events that happened there. One night, he is out drinking and eating with his friends, including his old neighbor, Shiba. After drinking for the whole night, he and Shiba leave to meet up with their friends, only to discover a dead, bloody body in the elevator. He is told by his younger sister, Utao, that Aki, an old friend, and his Kakashi doll are the culprits responsible. Kakashi dolls are large, futuristic looking dolls that can be controlled by a user that inserts part of their soul into the doll. Said to be the former shells of gods, these Kakashi dolls are used amongst special users.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 70% – Based on my impressions of the first few chapters of the manga, Kamisama Dolls has a slightly generic premise. I can say right now that Kamisama Dolls has a mix of both serious fighting, and light hearted comedy (both of the preview videos reflect that quite well). Overall though, the art and story are pretty good from what I’ve seen. The big benefit here would be the studio, Brains Base, which has previously worked on hit series like Baccano and Durarara! As for the staff behind this series, we have Seiji Kishi as the director, who has worked on a few other notable series such as Angel Beats and Seto no Hanayome. The guy behind the series composition, Makoto Uezu, has worked on the well received Katanagatari series, and was also part of Seto no Hanayome’s production. The staff, at least, has a decent track record of both comedies and serious series.

Steve: 75% – Animation studio Brain’s Base (e.g. Durarara!!, Baccano!, Kuragehime, etc) combined with director Kishi Seiji-san, who worked on several of my favorite comedy shows in the past like Tentai Senshi Sunred and Seto no Hanayome, as well as more recent one like Angel Beats, could turn out to be the right combination here. The synopsis of Kamisama Dolls seemed to imply a fairly gory and dark-themed show, but after watching the PVs, it reminds me a balanced combination of both dark and light atmosphere like Ga-Rei: Zero. One thing that worries me is that the original manga wasn’t well-received by many readers, but there have been many cases where a combination of a talented studio and director produce a surprisingly enjoyable show from mediocre material, and I hope this would be the case with Kamisama Dolls.

Preview Video 01:

Preview Video 02:

Dantalian no Shoka (ダンタリアンの書架)

English Name: Dantalian’s Bookshelf, Bibliotheca Mystica de Dantalian
Air Date:
July 15, 2011
Animation Studio: Gainax
Channel to be aired on: TV Tokyo at 25:23
Official Site: http://dantalian.tv/
Notable Seiyu: Sawashiro Miyuki, Ono Daisuke
Genres: Fantasy, Mystery

Overview:

Hugh Anthony Disward inherits an old mansion and a personal library from his grandfather. His grandfather was known as an eccentric amongst book collectors, at one time even spending half of his entire fortune to get a rare book. In the basement of the mansion, Hugh finds his grandfather’s vast library of books, as well as meets a mysterious girl named Dalian. She is a Dantalian, a gateway to the legendary “Dantalian’s bookshelf”, which stores the prohibited books of the demons.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 70% – The basic premise here is about a rather normal male lead in charge of a mysterious girl that has access to a vast demon library. The story itself is written by the same guy of Asura Cryin’ (which wasn’t the best series out there…), but what makes me a bit wary of this series is the actual story. Based on the first few manga chapters, while this series is very heavy on intrigue and mystery, some of the direction to the plot felt a bit on the weak side. The director, Yutaka Uemura, has very little experience for the most part, with his only notable experience being the assistant of the Gurren Lagann movie. The big plus here would be the heavyweight studio Gainax behind this series, which has made series ranging from the acclaimed Gurren Lagann and Evangelion series, to more controversial series like Panty and Stocking.

Steve: 80% – The light novel series of Dantalian no Shoka was written by Mikumo Gakuto, who also wrote Asura Cryin’ in the past. There’s also a manga adaption of the light novel, but I thought it’s not the best way to judge the original work, as the manga versions of light novels are either just as good as or worse than the light novel versions (a good example would be OreImo;;). Anyways, even though the TV anime version of Asura Cryin’ wasn’t very well-received, after reading the light novel of Dantalian no Shoka , I learned it was a significant improvement from the Mikumo Gakuto’s previous work and, combined with a studio usually putting strong emphasis on the production quality of its shows, I think Dantalian no Shoka has the potential to become one of the top shows in this summer season. I guess the big question is how the rookie director, Uemura Yataka, will shape the show with the talented Gainax staff. Also, I’m expected to hear the performance of my two favorite veteran seiyuus, Sawashiro Miyuki and Daisuke Ono, playing the role of the two main characters. :)

Preview Video 01:

CM 01:

Ikoku Meiro no Croisée (異国迷路のクロワーゼ)

Alternative Name: Ikoku Meiro no Croisée The Animation, La croisée dans un labyrinthe étranger
Air Date:
July 3, 2011
Animation Studio: Satelight
Channel to be aired on: Chiba TV at 24:30
Official Site: http://ikokumeiro.com/
Notable Seiyu: Toyama Nao, Kondo Takashi, Tanaka Hideyuki, Yuuki Aoi
Genres: Historical, Slice of Life, Seinen

Overview:

The story takes place in the second half of the 19th century, as Japanese culture is beginning to gain popularity in the West (known as Japonism in France). A young Japanese girl, Yune, accompanies a French traveller, Oscar, on his journey back to France. She decides to stay, and help, at Oscar’s family’s ironwork shop in Paris. Oscar’s nephew and shopowner Claude reluctantly accepts to take care of Yune. The two, whom know very little about each other’s cultural norms and traditions, live and grow together in the picturesque Paris of the 1800s.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 80% – Ikoku Meiro no Croisee has the potential to be a very, and I mean very, cute slice of life series. Seriously, just completely watch both of the preview videos and watch the absolutely adorable Yune at work. As for the story, based on my experience with the manga this series actually tries to be a very light hearted slice of life series, mixed in with some conflicts and misunderstandings based off of the radically different cultural backgrounds of the main characters. These conflicts are decent, but it’s really the slice of life that plays a prominent role here. The creator of Gosick’s art is behind this series, which is a perfect fit for the source material. As for the director here, Kenji Yasuda hasn’t really done anything too notable, but the series composition is being done by Junichi Sato, which is a huge plus. Junichi Sato has worked on all three seasons of the renowned slice-of-life Aria series, as well as the Kaleido Star and Tamayura slice-of-life series; they couldn’t have asked for anyone better for a slice of life anime. Another plus here would be that, for the setting and background art, they’ve got some actual French guys working on it. The beautiful backgrounds in the preview video are quite indicative of their detailed work.

Steve: 78% – The setting of Ikoku Meiro no Croisée is very similar to Gosick, where a Japanese main character comes to industrialized Europe and it’s also interesting to note that one of the gothic-style girl character, Alice, is voiced by Aoi Yuuki, who performs Vitorique in Gosick. After reading the original manga of the show, I thought it had a decent and mature story aimed at Seinen audience and plenty of little heart-warming moments. However, I noticed that studio Satelight hasn’t produced anything brilliant except Macross Frontier in recent years and the only noticeable work from the director, Kenji Yasuda, is Shugo Chara, a decent magical girl show aimed at young Japanese girls. Also, the overall visual quality of this show’s PV, where studios usually put considerable amount of effort in order to draw the attention from the anime fans, was slightly disappointing (perhaps the studio is putting too much efforts on the background art instead of the characters;;) and the inconsistent quality of Macross Frontier from studio Satelight (the studio didn’t fix a lot of blunders even in the Blu-ray version -_-;;) in the past makes me worried.

Preview Video 01:

Preview Video 02:

Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu Ni! (バカとテストと召喚獣 にっ!)

English Name: The Idiot, the Tests, and the Summoned Creatures 2
Air Date: July 7, 2011
Animation Studio: Silver Link
Channel to be aired on: TV Tokyo at 26:15
Official Site: Not Available
Notable Seiyu: Taketatsu Ayana, Katou Emiri, Mizuhashi Kaori
Genres: Comedy, Romance, School, Super Power

Overview:

Second Season of the light novel based Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu series. The story centers around Akihisa Yoshii, the “baka” of the title. His academy rigidly divides up the student body into classes based on the results of tests. The prodigies are in the A class with reclining seats complete with air conditioning, but Akihisa is in F class, the lowest rung of the school ladder which is furnished only with low, decrepit tables and worn-out straw tatami mats. The school happens to have developed experiments to summon fantasy creatures, and Akihisa decides to rally F class to take on the higher-tiered classes and seize their perks. The F class uses the summoned creatures in an all-out battle for school supremacy.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 65% – Well, for those that enjoyed the first season of this series, the staff for season two is mostly the same. In other words, you expect a slapstick comedy series very similar to the first one. As for the series itself, while the jokes sometimes got stale (especially the ones around the genderless Hideyoshi-kun), the overall series was pretty fun and energetic. For those that don’t know, Oonuma Shin (the director) has previously worked under Akiyuki Shinbo, which could lead to some very interesting visual styles. Both the scriptwriter and the director have worked on their fair share of excellent Shaft anime, which certainly is a good sign. The only real thing to expect here is some good slapstick comedy, and nothing really beyond that.

Steve: 75% – The bad news is that there’s really nothing much to Baka to Test except silly slapstick comedy from Akihisa, Yuuji, and Hideyoshi. Well, the good news is that the show is pretty good at what it is supposed to be good at, which is creating a good laugh out by rarely relying on too much dirty jokes (it is one of the reason why the show has a lot in common with Tantei Opera Milky Holmes). The director Oonuma Shin, is a student of the infamous Akiyuki Shinbo, and should somehow managed to make the show visually interesting with his “SHAFT” techniques. Anyway, as I’m still reading the light novel version of Baka to Test, I’ll be following this show for sure and I don’t think it’s a bad idea to keep one of those silly comedy animes in my summer 2011 anime list. :D

Preview Video:

Nurarihyon no Mago: Sennen Makyou (ぬらりひょんの孫 千年魔京)

English Name: Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan 2
Air Date:
July 3, 2011
Animation Studio: Studio Deen
Channel to be aired on: Tokyo MX at 17:30
Official Site: http://www.nuramago.jp/
Notable Seiyu: Hirano Aya, Fukuyama Jun, Asumi Kana
Genres: Action, Demons, Shounen, Supernatural

Overview:

Sequel to the Nurarihyon no Mago series. Rikuo Nura, is 3 parts human and a quarter Demon, lives in a house of spirits with his grandfather. Rikou is set to be the next clan head, despit the fact he dilikes his demon side. He soon come to terms with his demon blood and decides to take his position as young master of the Nura house. After defeating the Shikoku youkai, the young head has a brief moment of rest. That is, until the Nura clan becomes highly involved with the youkai of Kyoto and the prestigious exorcist family, known as the Keikain family.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 60% – Nurarihyon no Mago is one of the major shounen series running in Japan, and for good reason. The story is much more complex than some of your typical Shounens out there, and has a rather intriguing atmosphere. However, based on the first season, some of the conflicts and climaxes feel on the weak side. To be fair, some of the better arcs are coming up now that the Shikoku arc from the first season has been finished. The director has worked on some excellent series such as True tears and Simoun, but I can’t really say if he’s the best fit for this particular series.

Steve: 65% – I haven’t read the manga of Nurarihyon no Mago, so I can’t make a judgement about the show, but what I heard, while it was a solid fantasy series in Shounen Jump, a lot of fans were disappointed with Studio Deen ruining the show with some budget problems inside the company. (Also, Studio Deen could have been relying too much on the existing popularity of the manga series as it happened with many other well-known Shounen Jump series…) I hope Studio Deen has fixed its problem by now…

Preview Video:

Natsume Yuujin-chou San (夏目友人帳 参)

English Name: Natsume’s Book of Friends Three
Air Date: July 4th, 2011
Animation Studio: Brains Base
Channel to be aired on: TV Tokyo @ 25:30
Official Site: http://www.nasinc.co.jp/jp/natsume-anime/
Notable Seiyu: Kamiya Hiroshi, Inoue Kazuhiko, Kobayashi Sanae, Suwabe Junichi
Genres: Drama, Fantasy, Shoujo, Slice of Life, Supernatural

Overview:

The third season of the “Natsume Yuujin-chou” series. Natsume Takashi has the ability to see spirits, which he has long kept secret. However, once he inherits a strange book that belonged to his deceased grandmother, he discovered the reason why the spirits surround him. Containing the names of these spirits, a binding contract was formed between the spirits and the owner of the book. Now, Natsume is determined to free the spirits and dissolve all of the contracts.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 90% -Well, now that I’ve marathoned both seasons of this anime, I can say that I’m definitely looking forward to this series. The previous two seasons for this series have been very, very well received amongst some niche crowds, which is a promising indicator. I do suspect that this is going to be a slow, episodic series similar to Aria, though Aria was also a very well-received anime series. The atmosphere to this series is very calm and peaceful, almost dream-like at times. The stories themselves are rather nice too, but it’s really the characters that have made this series good so far. The staff behind the third season is virtually the same as the previous two seasons, which means there really shouldn’t be much issues with whether this will be a good adaptation or now.  The only thing I’m wondering here is that, considering how there is supposedly little manga source material left to animate, will this be the finale for this series?

Steve: 80% – This is another show, where I need to watch the prequel to make the best judgement about its sequel, but I heard the series was well-received throughout its two seasons. With the studio and most of its staff, including the director, remaining virtually the same in this new season of Natsume Yuujinchou, I wouldn’t be surprised to see another solid season from this franchise.

Preview Video:

Appleseed XIII (アップルシード XIII(サーティーン))

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
June 13, 2011
Animation Studio: Production I.G.
Channel to be aired on: TBA at –:– (Online stream available)
Official Site: http://appleseed13.jp/
Notable Seiyu: Sakamoto Maaya, Yamadera Kouichi
Genres: Action, Mecha, Sci-Fi, Military

Overview:

Following a world war that killed half the world’s population, the city-nation of Olympus stands as a beacon of hope in a world of chaos and conflict. The utopian metropolis is governed by Gaia, a vast artificial intelligence, and administered by a genetically engineered humanoids known as Bioroids.Although Olympus seems like a peaceful city on the surface, racial (human vs. bioroids vs. cyborgs), religious, and political conflicts lurk underneath — threatening to overturn the delicately balanced “peace.” Security threats such as terrorists and anti-government criminals abound, so the use of force becomes a necessary evil even in this so-called “utopia”. Deunan, a young female solider, and Briareos, a veteran cyborg-soldier, are both partners and lovers, as well as members of ES.W.A.T., the elite special forces serving Olympus. They are deployed wherever trouble strikes. Conspiracy, terrorism, deadly military weapons technology, greedy corporations, and power-hungry politicians — these are just some of the threats that Deunan and Briareos must contend with as they fight to protect Olympus and save mankind from plunging into another war. (From ANN)

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 65% - There is little info available about this series, but the story certainly seems interesting enough. Considering Production I.G. is behind this series, I do have high hopes for the animation and such. Unfortunately, I don’t have anything else to say beyond that. The series composition is being done by Junichi Fujisaku, who has worked on the script of quite a few of the Ghost in the Shell series’ installments, but the director here hasn’t really worked on anything too astounding. I just hope this turns out like the highly acclaimed Ghost in the Shell series, though I have my doubts.

Steve: 50% – It is supposed to be a full CG show from Production I.G. and it seems to have some resemblance to Ghost in the Shell, though I think it will end up as some kind of gimmicky 3D-animated show. The show is full of question marks, but there’s still good chance that it could end up being a decent show to watch. I guess I’ll just have to wait.

Preview Video 01:

Kami-sama no Memo-chou (神様のメモ帳)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 02, 2011
Animation Studio: J.C. Staff
Channel to be aired on: MBS at 23:00
Official Site: http://www.kamimemo.com/
Notable Seiyu: Ono Daisuke, Sakurai Takahiro, Kayano Ai
Genres: Mystery, Slice of Life

Overview:

Based on the light novel novel written by Sugii Hikaru, with illustrations by Kishida Mel. The story centers around a “NEET (Not in Education, Employment, or Training) detective” girl named Alice. She is always in her pajamas, and operates from within her bedroom. Fujishima Narumi is a plain high school boys. His classmate Shinozaki Ayaka invites Narumi to the gardening club and introduces a hikikomori detective Alice to him. Alice hires Narumi as an assistant to solve mysterious cases involving an illegal drug “Angel Fix”. She uses her vast network of people and information to solve cases.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 55% – After reading the first few chapters for this series, the first thought that comes to mind is that this is “Gosick in a modern city”. The big difference I saw between this and Gosick, though, is that this series didn’t really have any overarching compelling mysteries (or at least, none that I saw). To be fair, the individual mysteries turned out to be much more interesting than I expected. The characters were on the generic side though, which doesn’t really help in a mystery series like this. Kishida Mel is behind the pretty art here, which is why it might remind you of Hanasaku Iroha’s art, or perhaps the PS3 Atelier series’ artwork if you are familiar with it. What I’m very wary about is the fact that J.C. Staff is behind this adaptation, and in recent times J.C. Staff has been spitting out the same old generic “boy meets magical girl” storyline. On the plus side, the director here has worked on series such as Toradora and Tsukihime. The series composition is being done by Seishi Minakami, who has previously worked on Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood, To Aru Kagaku no Railgun, and Bakuman. Music is being done by the same guy behind Gurren Lagann’s soundtrack, so the music should be nice.

Steve: 73% – After reading the light novel of Kami-sama no Memo-chou, the story reminded me of my favorite light novel series, Bungaku Shoujo (which unfortunately did not meet my expectation with heavily-edited story in its anime film T_T), with a young girl playing as a detective solving cases. Though I don’t think the beauty of Kishida Mel’s illustrations will be directly reflected in the anime version, I think J.C. Staff will be able to do a decent job of animating the show without any major problem.

Preview Video:

Sacred Seven (セイクリッドセブン)

English Name: Sacred 7
Air Date:
July 02, 2011
Animation Studio: Sunrise
Channel to be aired on: MBS at 26:28
Official Site: http://www.sacred7.jp/
Notable Seiyu: Nakajima Megumi, Okamoto Nobuhiko, Itou Kanae
Genres: Action, School, mecha

Overview:

A “new school battle action” project by Sunrise. The tagline is “People’s memories change the world!” Features mecha battles, fights with monsters, mysterious girls granting superpowers, etc.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 40% -After the surprisingly well done Tiger and Bunny series from Sunrise this season, I’m hoping that this anime original series turns out good. I do get the feeling this is aimed at a more younger audience, which is a bit discouraging, but there is also a huge lack of available info regarding the story for this series. In other words, as of now this series could be a hit-or-miss series. The staff here have worked on series like Big O, Trigun, and Karas, which is a big plus in my eyes. A Yuki Kajiura OP theme is quite odd here, but hopefully that’s a good sign.

Steve: 65% – After examining the preview video of this Sunrise show, I realized there was a strong resemblance to one of Sunrise’s most famous show, Code Geass, as the main character looks awfully similar to Lelouch. Well, I guess it’s no coincidence since the character design of the show was done by the same person who worked on Code Geass. There isn’t much information out there about the show, but I can say I do like overall quality of the animation in the preview video as well as the appearance of the characters, but I’m slightly worried about how the story will turn out, especially since it will have an original story from the guy who wrote scripts for Naruto and the Yugioh series (but he did also work on successful shows like Karas, too). The only major past work from the director of this show is Galaxy Angel series.

Preview Video:

Ro-Kyu-Bu! (ロウきゅーぶ!)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 1, 2011
Animation Studio: project No.9 and Studio Blanc
Channel to be aired on: AT-X at 23:30
Official Site: http://www.ro-kyu-bu.com/
Notable Seiyu: Hanazawa Kana, Hikasa Youko, Itou Shizuka, Iguchi Yuka
Genres: Comedy, School, Sports

Overview:

Based on a sports comedy light novel by Aoyama Sagu. Hasegawa Subaru loves basketball, and eventually enters the basketball club of Nanashiba High School. The activity of the club gets suspended because the team leader falls in love with the 11 year old daughter of the coaching teacher, where he was accused of being a lolicon. Eventually the team is disbanded, and with nothing to do, Subaru is asked to coach a basketball club of elementary school girls. At first, he is reluctant to teach small girls, but he devotes himself to the club as he knows the complex circumstances they are in.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 35% – This series has a bunch of star seiyu on board, including big names like Itou Shizuka (Hinagiku from Hayate no Gotoku), Hikasa Youko (Mio from K-ON), and Kana Hanazawa (Tenshi from Angel Beats, Kuroneko from Oreimo). Quite honestly, I’m getting the feeling this series might aim for a “K-ON” type story, just revolving around basketball and elementary school girls. Quite frankly, I can’t say much about the story because I haven’t found much info on it, but if the very poorly done preview video is an indicator of anything, this series is just out to milk some money. I’m really hoping the preview video isn’t an indication of a lack of animation budget, because if it is then animation quality will probably suffer tremendously. I don’t really see anything too notable by the director or the series composition either, which means that this series will pretty much rely on how well the characters are portrayed and characterized.

Steve: 55% – On the surface, the light novel Ro-Kyu-Bu! seems to be aimed at lolicon fans, but it was well received by basketball fans as it does actually have a good story about characters truly caring about playing basketball. Currently, there isn’t much information about the show itself as well as the studio behind it (except that the director of the show is a guy who directed Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha A’s and Asura Cryin’ series), so I guess I need to wait for the preview video with some actual animation in it in order to make better judgement about the prospects for this show. But for now, I would rather pay attention to other shows in this summer season.

Preview Video 01:

Preview Video (but no animated footage shown =_=; ):

The Idolm@ster (アイドルマスター)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 7, 2011
Animation Studio: A-1 Pictures
Channel to be aired on: TBS at 25:25
Official Site: http://www.idolmaster-anime.jp/
Notable Seiyu: Hirata Hiromi, Kugimiya Rie
Genres: Music

Overview:

The story is set after a new anime based on Namco Bandai’s hit game series, The iDOLM@STER.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 50% – The Idolm@ster series of video games have been quite a hit in Japan, which is why an anime adaptation isn’t much of a surprise for me. The basic premise of the story involves aspirational young girls who wish to become idols. The good part here is that Akira Takata, an excellent animator, is behind the animation direction. Atsushi Nishigori, the director, has worked on a ton of Gainax series, which could be potentially good. I’m a bit wary of this series considering it’s video game origins (as well as the premise of the story itself), and considering this series is meant to pander to it’s already rather large fanbase, I can’t imagine the creators for the anime taking any risks in trying to develop a proper plot and character development. Just appeal to the fanbase, right? Well that’s exactly what To Aru Majutsu no Index II did, and what a mess that turned out to be.

Steve: 80% – Probably the bread-winner of XBox 360s in Japan, where the Japanese market is dominated by Sony’s PS3 and Nintendo Wii. iDOLM@STER (I’ll refer to it simply as Idolmaster from now on for convenience’s sake…) has been recently receiving noticeable amount of attention in moe-girl Japanese magazines such as Megami. As the show will be directed by a former GAINAX staff Nishigori Atsushi-san (Evangelion, Gurren Lagann, PS&G, etc) combined with rookie director Takao Touko, I smell chances of a strong commercial success from this, unlike the failure of its mediocre predecessor. Even though a commercial success doesn’t necessarily translate into a better quality show and I’m not a big fan of harem genre (especially a show that rivals Mahou Sensei Negima with the number of heroines in it), I would put trust into studio A-1 Pictures which has recently made a strong comeback with Ao no Exorcist and Ano Hana. (Also, the animation quality of the main characters in the PV also looked just as promising as WORKING!!) I wouldn’t be surprised if this one becomes the next success of moe-music anime in Japan, like… K-ON!. :)

Preview Video 01:

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Preview Video 03:

 

Yuruyuri (ゆるゆり)

English Name:N/A
Air Date:
July 4, 2011
Animation Studio: Dogakobo
Channel to be aired on: TV Tokyo at 26:00
Official Site: http://www.yuruyuri.com/
Notable Seiyu: Tsuda Minami, Toyosaki Aki, Taketatsu Ayana, Katou Emiri, Fujita Saki
Genres: Comedy, School, Shoujo Ai, Slice of Life

Overview:

The story follows the everyday life stories of a group of 13-14 year old girls. Kyouko and Yui welcome their friend Akari, who is a year younger, to middle school and to their “amusement club.” This club consists of the three of them hanging out and talking in the free clubroom of the now-abolished tea club. Their circle of friends slowly expands to include other girls at school, such as adorable, little Chinatsu, Kyouko’s rival Ayano, and the yuri fantasy-prone Chitose.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 40% – For those that have been watching A-channel this season, based on my brief taste test with the manga, Yuruyuri is going to be extremely similar in terms of feel and atmosphere. In other words, everyday slice of life with goofy character interactions. While that means that this series will be a relaxing, enjoyable watch, at the same time this is a yuri (aka girls love) series. While the manga was rather light on the yuri, it’s still a main part of the overall story, which I’m not quite comfortable with. That’s not to say it won’t be a good series, it’s just that Yuri content tends to be a bit iffy for my tastes. A major plus here would be the people behind this series have worked on the well received Mitsudomoe comedy anime, which was a pretty well done comedy.

Steve: 60% – Although A-Channel looked like to be an imitation of K-ON! (or any other slice-of-life manga with 4-5 cute girls) lacking originality, it made up for its deficiency with overall artistic quality of the show, especially with clean-looking visuals. This time, Yuru Yuri looks even more similar to K-ON! featuring with tea-drinking girls plus the shoujo-ai element (as indicated by the title of the show) minus the music element, though I don’t think the author tried to copy K-ON! as the manga of Yuru Yuri started before the K-ON! was animated by KyoAni) Unlike the talented rookie studio Gokumi, Dokagobo hasn’t really produced anything brilliant recently, so my hopes for this show aren’t very high. Also, the manga wasn’t exactly to my taste, so I’ll probably decide on following the show after watching the first episode.

Preview Video:

Mayo Chiki(まよちき!)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 7, 2011
Animation Studio: Feel
Channel to be aired on: TBS at 25:55
Official Site: http://www.mediafactory.co.jp/bunkoj/mayochiki/index.html
Notable Seiyu: Kitamura Eri, Hanazawa Kana, Asumi Kana
Genres: Comedy, Romance

Overview:

Based on a light novel by the same name, written by Asano Hajime. Konoe Subaru, 17, has been serving as the butler of the Suzutsuki family. Suzutsuki Kanade, the one which Subaru currently serves, is idolized within the school as the prettist amongst the girls. Meanwhile, due to an accidental run-in at the bathroom, Sakamachi Kinjirou discovers that Subaru is actually a girl cross-dressing as a butler! According to Kanade, Subaru will lose her position as a butler if anybody at school finds out about her gender. Kinjirou is forcibly coerced to help Subaru, in exchange for help regarding his abnormal fear of girls due to his playfully violent mother and younger sister.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 35% – Meh, based on reading the first few chapters of the manga, this series is filled with tons of typical cliches for the romantic comedy genre. The art is nice, but honestly speaking you shouldn’t expect anything exceptionally amazing. On the plus side, the series composition here is being done by Reiko Yoshida, who is a pretty good writer. Like I said though, based on how this series has a tsundere trap, a yandere, and a few other stereotypical cast members, don’t expect anything beyond your standard romantic comedy. This could prove to be very fun, but definitely not “best of the season” material.

Steve: 45% – Even though the synopsis of light novel Mayochiki seems to be full of a typical light-novelish cliches, it has actually recently won Best Rookie’s Award in Japan with strong characters and clever humors. Unfortunately, the fact that studio Feel hasn’t really produced anything good recently worries me quite a bit and it looks like the show will be saturated with unnecessary fan-services from the look of its preview video. I think I’ll probably end up just reading the light novel version…

Preview Video:

Itsuka Tenma no Kuro-Usagi (いつか天魔の黒ウサギ)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 8, 2011
Animation Studio: ZEXCS
Channel to be aired on: Teletama at 25:05
Official Site: http://www.itsu-ten.jp/
Notable Seiyu: Takamoto Megumi, Fukuyama Jun, Nakamura Yuuichi
Genres: Comedy, Horror, Romance, Vampire, Supernatural, Seinen

Overview:

Taito Kurogane is your average high school student, with his only odd trait being that he gets unusually sleepy. One day, he saves a girl about to be hit by an incoming truck, only for he himself to get decapitated in the process. However, for some reason, he doesn’t die! After realizing he has a supernatural body, Taito begins to remember a dream from his childhood about a female vampire that had given him “poison” that would make him her lover for all eternity. Only, Taito soon realizes that the dream was very real, and soon he must protect his lover from harms way.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 25% – Alright, the big surprise for me here is that the writer behind this series also wrote the Legend of the Legendary Heroes, which is actually a pretty good series. However, if my experience with the manga reflects the source material well, the story is exactly as generic as it sounds. And when I mean generic, I mean generic male lead, generic heroine, generic evil badguys, and so on. Another negative here is that the director, Takashi Yamamoto, hasn’t really directed any good series. As for the series composition, Shigeru Morita has very little experience in that field as well; this obvious does not bode too well for the series.

Steve: 55% – The synopsis of the light novel as well as the fact that ZEXCS will be animating this show doesn’t seem that promising right now, but I need to point out that the author of Itsuka Tenma is the same one who wrote Densetsu no Yuusha no Densetsu and ZEXEC was the one producing its TVA adaption (probably the only good series from this studio…). There’s a slight chance that something could click together with this combination. For now, I would really like to see the preview video of the show with actual animation scenes in it.

Preview Video 02:

Preview Video 01:

CM 01:

Morita-san wa Mukuchi(森田さんは無口)

English Name: Miss Morita is Taciturn
Air Date:
July 5, 2011
Animation Studio: Studio Gram
Channel to be aired on: KBS Kyoto at 25:30
Official Site: http://www.takeshobo.co.jp/sp/moritasan/
Notable Seiyu: Hanazawa Kana, Tomatsu Haruka, Hayami Saori
Genres: Comedy, School, Slice of Life

Overview:

Based on a 4-koma manga. Morita Mayu is a slightly odd high school girl. She is extremely reticent, and her silence and habit of looking at people’s eyes directly sometimes causes misunderstandings. The reason behind it is not because she doesn’t like to talk nor because she has nothing to say, but is due to the fact she thinks too much before speaking, thus losing the timing to speak altogether. But she lives a happy school life with her classmates.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 35% – I don’t know too much about the story here, but based on the genres and the 4-koma origins of this series, I’m expecting a rather laid back quirky comedy series. What has me worried, though, is how the OVA for this series was rather poorly produced. Hopefully that won’t be the same here in the anime adaptation. The director here, Naotaka Hayashi, does have his fair share of experience though, having worked on series like Steins;Gate, Gosick, and Haibane renmei. As to whether his experience will contribute here remains to be seen.

Steve: 70% – I’ve read the manga version of Morita-san after a friend of mine recommended to it and actually quite enjoyed it thanks to humors making clever use of Morita-san’s silence. I think the same could be said for the OVA version which came out about a few months. Even though it wasn’t anything amazing in artistic sense being a low-budget project, the show was enjoyable for me and I had some good laughs out of it. As a fan of Hanazawa Kana and slice-of-life shows, there’s a good chance that I’ll be following this show.

Preview Video:

Preview Video / CM:

Blade (ブレイド)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 1, 2011
Animation Studio: Madhouse
Channel to be aired on: Animax at 22:00
Official Site: http://www.animax.co.jp/marvelanime/blade/
Notable Seiyu: None
Genres: Action

Overview:

Marvel anime adaptation. “Blade” Eric Brooks — known as Blade — seeks revenge on Deacon Frost, the vampire lord who killed his mother while she was still pregnant with Eric. With all the powers of a vampire and none of their weaknesses, Blade’s quest leads him throughout Southeast Asia in search of Frost, and, in Vietnam, he discovers a vampire plot that threatens to take down the whole world.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 15% - Considering the rather terrible track record of Madhouse produced Marvel anime, I’m not even going to try and get my hopes up for this series. To be fair, though, their most recent adaptation (Wolverine) was apparently decent, and Blade’s story is probably one of the best suited for an anime conversion. The director, Mitsuyuki Masuhara, has played a role behind a wide range of anime, from Death Note to High School of the Dead, to Chobits and Kobato. As for the series composition, let’s just say I’m not expecting much…

Steve: 50% – I seriously hope Madhouse would stop adopting Marvel Comics and make “real” animes. I mean there’s nothing wrong with adopting American comics, but it’s just the fact that Madhouse hasn’t produced anything decent with Marvel Comics materials yet. (I’m slowly starting to miss the old heyday of Madhouse.. T_T) However, there’s some chance that Blade could be more “compatible” with a Japanese animation studio with its vampire theme, so I hope we could get something similar to at least something like Highschool of the Dead.

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Nyanpire the Animation (にゃんぱいあ The Animation)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 6, 2011
Animation Studio: Gonzo
Channel to be aired on: Kids Station at 22:54
Official Site: Not Available
Notable Seiyu: Fukuyama Jun, Sugiyama Noriaki, Goto Yuuko
Genres: Comedy, Supernatural

Overview:

The story follows a black cat who was abandoned and left to starve. Just before the cat’s life was to be extinguished, a vampire emerged from the darkness and gave it blood. He was taken in by a girl Misaki and started to live with her. A heartwarming story about a stray black cat, who was given blood from a vampire. Nyanpire’s favorite phrase is “Give me blood nya.”

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 25% – Gonzo finally returns! And they make… a chibi vampire cat anime…? Gonzo has made some astoundingly good series in the past, such as Welcome to the NHK, the acclaimed Gankutsuou anime, and the fan-favorite Last Exile series. That being said, I’m not sure how good of an indicator Gonzo’s previous experience would be here. This animation project is a collaboration between Gonzo and a Chinese organization, which means you shouldn’t expect any sort of controversial storyline that they wouldn’t be able to air in China. In other words, expect a very cutesy, at times sugary and touching, vampire cat anime.

Steve: 45% – It looks like animation studio Gonzo is crawling back from its grave like a revived zombie and decided to create a cute-looking comedy show with a vampire cat aimed at little kids. It’s kind of hard to predict how the show will be like (though I can say it’s probably a low-budget flash animation like Haiyoru! Nyaru-Ani… -_-;;), but I think there’s a small chance that its humor could be compatible with my taste, no matter how childish the story is.

Preview Video:

Mawaru Penguin Drum (輪るピングドラム)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
Tentative July 2011
Animation Studio: Brains Base
Channel to be aired on: TBA at –:–
Official Site: http://penguindrum.jp/
Notable Seiyu: None announced
Genres: Slice of Life

Overview:

New project from the director of Revolutionary Girl Utena, Kunihiko Ikuhara. The story will center around the lives of three siblings: Kanba, Shouma, and Himari Takakura, with Himari as the female main character. The following messages can be read on the website: “We share all my love and all your sin”, “I will inform those of you who won’t amount to anything”. Himari is hospitalized due to her poor health, and is told she doesn’t have long to live

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 55% – Virtually no info available on this series. It is worth mentioning that studio Brains Base is behind this adaptation, which is a good sign. The huge surprise here, though, is that this is being directed by Kuni­hiko Ikuhara, the guy that directed Revolutionary Girl Utena, and has been involved with anime such as Nodame Cantabile and Soul Eater. Hopefully his presence here means that we’re in for an interesting story. The CM does seem to indicate a more mysterious atmosphere, though I can’t be too sure based on a 15 second video ^_^;;

Steve: 50% – There isn’t much information available about the show, but I suspect it’s a show with some kind of satires aimed at older audience.

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Nekogami Yaoyorozu (猫神やおよろず)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 09, 2011
Animation Studio: AIC PLUS+
Channel to be aired on: AT-X at 08:30
Official Site: http://www.mmv.co.jp/special/nekogami/
Notable Seiyu: Tomatsu Haruka, Horie Yui, Kayano Ai, Taketatsu Ayana, Toyosaki Aki
Genres: Comedy, Supernatural, Slice of Life, Seinen

Overview:

Based on a comedy manga by FLIPFLOPs (of Touhou fame), sometimes called a “neighborhood deity comedy”. Koyama Yuzu is running an antique shop. Mayu, a cat god, is living off Yuzu and leads an idle life playing games. Lots of gods visit Mayu, and engage in festive celebrations.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 20 % - The basic story here seems to be a standard slice of life comedy (maybe like Nichijou..?), but a huge negative here is how AIC+ is the studio backing this. The studio isn’t exactly known for being great, that’s for sure. On the plus side, the series composition and the director here have worked on series like Kaichou wa Maid sama, Cromartie High School, Lucky Star, and Tears to Tiara. The staff is honestly the only real thing I’m happy about, and whether that translates to a good anime adaptation.

Steve: 45% – I’m not terribly excited at the combination of AIC Plus+ and AT-X channel (it’s a warning sign that the show is full of adult fanservice, but it could just mean the show’s humor is aimed at older audience), but who knows?, we could get something decent from Sakurai Hiroaki-san, who directed Kaichou wa Maid-sama and Digi Charat in the past.

Preview Video 01:

Preview Video 02:

R-15

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 09, 2011
Animation Studio: AIC
Channel to be aired on: TBA at –:–
Official Site: http://kadokawa-anime.jp/R-15/
Notable Seiyu: None
Genres: Comedy, Romance, School, Harem

Overview:

Based on the light novel series by Fujima Takuya. Akutagawa Takuto is a teenage porn novel writer. He enters Hirameki Gakuen, which accepts only geniuses with outstanding talent. He leads his classmates with his porn skills to win an interclass competition.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 15% – The porn novel writer instantly gets some negatives in my book, and based on the preview video, I’m expecting quite a bit of fanservice and slapstick comedy. Huge negative here though; director directed the infamous KissxSis series, which automatically gets me wary. The series composition isn’t being done by anyone worth noting, which also isn’t very confidence inspiring here.

Steve: 25% – The “porn novel writer” part in the synopsis draws me some attention, but I can feel some chills down my spine from the fact that the director of this show has also worked on shows like KissxSis (though his other works also include Fortune Arterial: Akai Yasoku and Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu, which weren’t as terrible…). I think it’s very unlikely that I’ll be watching this show.

Preview Video 01:

CM 01:

Kaitou Tenshi Twin Angel – Kyun Kyun☆Tokimeki Paradise!! (快盗天使ツインエンジェル 〜キュンキュン☆ときめきパラダイス!!〜)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 04, 2011
Animation Studio: J.C. Staff
Channel to be aired on: TV Yokohama at 25:45
Official Site: http://twin-angel.tv/
Notable Seiyu: Noto Mamiko, Kugimiya Rie, Horie Yui, Asakawa Yuu
Genres: Magical Girl, Mahou Shoujo

Overview:

Haruka Minazuki and Aoi Kannazuki are freshman high school students and best friends. During the day they help with school activities but at night they thwart enemies like Black Auction and other villains as Red Angel and Blue Angel, the Twin Angel team.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 20% – The premise here just screams “generic magical girl”, especially after watching the very sugary preview video. To be fair, the director Yoshiaki Iwasaki has worked on some fun series like Hayate no Gotoku (Season two), Love Hina, Zero no Tsukaima, and Ookami-san. While he is a good fit for this particular type of series, I really think the story will just turn out bland and uninspired.

Steve: 40% – The OVA of Kaitou Tenshi from studio Nomad comes pretty close to a failure (some people seemed to quite like it though..), but the show is coming back as a TVA version. Even though I don’t think it will make much difference, it could end up being more watchable than its predecessor by having a different animation studio, J.C. Staff, this time. I’ll probably watch the first episode of it just to see how the two magical girls are like. :P

Preview Video:

Uta no☆Prince-sama ♪ Maji Love 1000% (うたの☆プリンスさまっ♪ マジLOVE1000%)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 02, 2011
Animation Studio: A-1 Pictures
Channel to be aired on: Tokyo MX at 24:00
Official Site: http://utapri.tv/
Notable Seiyu: Suwabe Junichi, Miyano Mamoru, Nakamura Yuuichi
Genres: Comedy, Romance, School, Shoujo, Harem

Overview:

Nanami Haruka wants to be a song writer, so she attends an idol training school filled with beautiful bishounen. The school pairs each aspiring songwriter with an aspiring idol, but Haruka finds herself paired with 3 idols! To make things more difficult, Nanami is also not allowed to date any of her beautiful partners!

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 35% – Anime based on a game with target audience being girls? Reverse Harem? This is pretty much the same thing as the Starry Sky anime from not too long ago; an anime catering to girls where you have a girl protagonist and a reverse harem composed of a bunch of pretty guys. While this could turn out to be a decent romance show, the “video game adaptation part” doesn’t really inspire much confidence. A huge plus here is the series composition, being done by Tomoko Konparu. Tomoko has worked on some pretty popular series, such as Kimi ni Todoke and Nodame Cantabile.

Steve: 50% – An anime based on a Shoujo PSP game featuring pretty boys(;;), the show is unlikely to be compatible with my taste. But studio A-1 Pictures rarely makes any terrible animes so I think there will be enough female viewers who will have interest in this kind of show. In the end though, I’ll probably end up just watching IDOLMASTER, another idol-genre show from the same studio.

Preview Video:

Manyuu Hikenchou (魔乳秘剣帖)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
July 2011
Animation Studio: Hoods Entertainment
Channel to be aired on: AT-X at –:–
Official Site: http://oppaidaisuki.jp/
Notable Seiyu: Toyosaki Aki, Mizuhara Kaoru, Noto Mamiko, Kotobuki Minako
Genres: Action, Ecchi

Overview:

It is currently the Taiheimeji Era. It is a reign ruled by the Tokugawa shogunate. Inside this shogunate, there is a group of warriors that support the government. They are the Manyuu Clan. In this current era, breasts mean everything. If you have breasts, you are guaranteed wealth and popularity. If you lack them, you are rarely considered “human”. Members of the Manyuu Clan help raise the future big breasts. Written on a secret scroll possessed by the clan, there is said to be various techniques on how to grow big and beautiful breasts. Chifusa is to be successor of the clan. However, she takes the secret scroll and runs away with it, hoping to fight against the cruel world that the Manyuu Clan has created.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 5% – Fan of Queen’s Blade, To Love ru, or Seikon no Quaser? Here’s your new series to follow, boob-focused Manyuu Hikenchou. Seriously, just reading the story premise is bad enough to give me a headache. Oh, and for those that know Japanese, just translate the URL for the official site. Actually, to make it even easier, check out the url for this show’s twitter account: http://twitter.com/#!/large_breasts It’s quite obvious that this series is meant to be pure fanservice. What’s weird here, though, is that you have quite a few seiyu from both K-ON and Kimi ni Todoke. Kind of a weird choice in Seiyu…

Steve: 5% – It looks like there’s always a demand from Japanese Otakus who are constantly looking for a boobie-themed anime like Seikon no Qwaser. Sigh… The synopsis of this show sounds pretty hilarious, though. XD

Preview Video 01:

Inumarudashi (いぬまるだしっ)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
June 10th, 2011
Animation Studio: Gathering
Channel to be aired on: TV Tokyo at 18:00
Official Site: http://www.shonenjump.com/j/rensai/inumaru/
Notable Seiyu: None
Genres: Comedy, School, Slice of Life

Overview:

Tamako-sensei is a newly minted Kindergarten teacher who ventures off to watch after her very first kindergarten class. All of the children seem to be normal, delightful little children, except for one boy named Inumaru-kun. Inumaru-kun acts very strangely, and sticks out amongst his class as being the most mischevious. The story revolves around Inumaru-kun’s antics.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 5% – While I thought that this series could turn out fun at first, my hopes were quickly crushed as I read the first manga chapter. The comedy was at times disturbing (in my opinion at least), and not very cute or funny at all. I would classify the humor here as “weird humor”, and didn’t get any laughs out of the manga. There is little info known about the staff that I could find, but I’m definitely not planning on following this series.

Preview Video:

Preview Video is Currently Unavailable

Double-J (だぶるじぇい)

English Name: N/A
Air Date:
June 28th, 2011
Animation Studio: DLE, Inc.
Channel to be aired on: Nippon TV at 25:29
Official Site: http://www.ntv.co.jp/yuruani/
Notable Seiyu: None
Genres: Comedy, School

Overview:

Based on the manga by Nonoka Eiji, also known as the creator of Cromartie High School. The heroine, Hajime Usami, has just entered high school and is looking around for a new club to join. Usami and her friend run into the traditional arts club, where somewhat eccentric traditional arts practitioners are members, hard at work trying to “preserve Japan’s traditional culture”. These girls become entangled with this eccentric club, and comedy ensues. The anime will run in NTV’s Yuruani? program, which currently runs flash animated shorts of several manga.

Potential/Impressions:

Tsuki: 5% – Ok, the writer to the original series is definitely worth noting. The original manga was fun too, though a bit more on the generic side. HOWEVER, the key point that really kills the entire show for me here is the so called “animation studio” behind this. DLE usually makes flash anime series, and believe me, that usually means that the show will consist of gag focused, extremely poorly produced 3-4 minute shorts. Just look at one of their previous works, Haiyoru; it was heavily gag focused, extremely short and quirky, and all in all just not worth my time.

Preview Video:

Preview Video is Currently Unavailable

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  17 Responses to “Season Preview – Summer 2011”

  1. It looks like Production IG will be quite busy this season, especially since the last few seasons they have seemed to be on the sidelines. Personally I’ll be looking forward to all of IG’s series, Natsume and NO 6. Kamisama Dolls and Ikoku Meiro no Croisée loook like they could be really good or really bad. Nurarihyon no Mago is not very good but Its still fun to watch. Overall the season looks pretty good, but not as good as the current season.

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    • Production IG is indeed rather busy this season. I’m really hoping animation quality doesn’t suffer as a result, but I think I.G. knows how to manage itself properly.

      As for Natsume, I’m going to try and catch up on both seasons, but oh boy will that be one interesting prospect. 26 episodes will be quite a hurdle x_x;

      NO 6. and Kamisama Dolls could turn out rather mediocre, but I think Ikoku Meiro no Croisée will turn out as a fairly entertaining cute slice of life. Nothing groundbreaking, of course, but nothing bad either.

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  2. Not sure what to make of this Summer season, good thing Ao no Exorcist, Tiger & Bunny, Hanasaku Iroha and Steins;Gate are 20+ episodes!

    I’ll probably pick up:
    Kami-sama no Memo-chou – Preview Art
    Usagi Drop – Noitamina and hype
    No. 6 – Noitamina and Sci-fi is my favorite genre
    Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu 2 – Loved Season 1
    Blood C – Clamp and hype
    ID@LMASTER – A-1 Pictures

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    • Ao no Exorcist, I’m not too sure. Steins;Gate, Tiger and Bunny, and Hanasaku Iroha, though, I think will all turn out quite good. Maybe even better than a majority of the Summer season stuff.

      Honestly speaking, though, I don’t see anything revolutionary or anything this season. I guess creativity has been decreasing with each successive season. On the contrary, though, a lot more stories are trying to be more genuine and create good characters + stories. Hopefully this season has it’s fair of surprise hits.

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  3. OMG! O.O
    So exciting!!~~
    I’m excited for: Blood-C, No. 6, Dantalian no Shoka, Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu Ni!, Kami-sama no Memo-chou and that’s about it..

    Blood-C. Clamp Series. Might give it a go.
    No. 6. Excited. Read the manga.
    Dantalian no Shoka. Quite Interesting. Might give it a go.
    Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu Ni! Enjoyed the first series. Hope this one will be even better.
    Kami-sama no Memo-chou. Hmm…
    “After reading the first few chapters for this series, the first thought that comes to mind is that this is “Gosick in a modern city”.” LOL.. When I read the summary itself, the words stuck in my head were “Gosick”. LOL.
    “To be fair, the individual mysteries turned out to be much more interesting than I expected.” Might give this a go. Hope the main male protagonist isn’t as annoying as Kujo. >.<

    Thanks for the summer preview!! ~

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    • Hehe, thanks :)

      I’ll actually be checking out most of those series you’ve listed. Honestly, I feel that a lot of shows this season will be very hit-or-miss, which doesn’t bode well in my eyes.

      I’m really looking forward to the Fall season though, with some heavy-hitter series like Fate/Zero, Persona 4, Bakuman, Shakugan no shana, and Last Exile all airing at once. >:3

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  4. I thought they’ll be airing Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai this season!

    I have a feeling that this summer’s anime will be overshadowed by more interesting series that’s still running for this season such as steins;gate, Tiger & Bunny, and Iroha… Based from the trailers, only a few of summer’s anime are interesting… orz

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    • I believe Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai is set for next Fall season, though I’m not 100% sure yet. I’ve heard it’s quite a good series though, so it’s definitely something I’ll be looking out for.

      I mentioned this in an earlier comment, but this Fall season looks like it will be very, very busy. The two major anime seasons in a year are Spring and Fall, but this Fall looks like it will be especially crowded. I’m anticipating over 6-8 series already for the Fall, and I’m betting not even half of all Fall season shows have even been announced yet! x_X

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  5. 2011 will be a good year for anime I’m sure of it.

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    • It’s been a mixed year so far, with much more slice of life than any other year I can really think of. I can see why people say that anime’s quality is in decline, though the quantity of new anime is still plenty high.

      Hopefully this season has it’s surprise hits, and Fall season doesn’t disappoint as well.

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  6. my must-watch: Usagi Drop, Blood-C, no. 6, Natsume Yuujin-chou San, Kami-sama no Memo-chou (not sure), The Idolm@ster (not sure too).

    Probably watch: Dantalian no Shoka,Ikoku Meiro no Croisée, Sacred Seven.

    oh that’s all? I thought I will have more must-watch XD, well, that would let me watch more finished-airing series :D

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    • Hehe, well, the two major anime seasons in a year are Spring and Fall. Winter and Summer naturally have less premiering series.

      I guess it’s a good thing that we have quite a few 2-cour series from the spring, with stuff like Steins;Gate and Hanasaku Iroha, going through the summer season as well.

      This summer may not be as busy, but Fall season this year should be huge. >:3

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  7. This season doesn’t look too promising, for me at least.
    The only shows I know I’ll be watching are Kamisama Dolls, Usagi Drop and Ikoku Meiro no Croisee
    Then I MIGHT watch No.6 but only because BONES is the one animating it..
    but I don’t know, if others are giving the other shows good scores, I’ll try them out

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    • You could really distinctly see the slice of life/moe trend in this upcoming season of Anime. And not to mention, a lot of these series are “playing it safe” with the content they animate.

      There’s not too many experimental stories and stuff in the next season, and while I do realize animation studios would prefer to play it safe and make some solid earnings, less experimental stuff means less likelihood of surprise major hits like Mahou Shoujo Madoka earlier in the year.

      I guess the bad economy is really having an adverse effect on the willingness of studios to experiment, but I can’t exactly blame them.

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  8. too much moe
    not enough ecchi or even fanservice, needs more shows like Freezing or Strike Witches
    who do they think they are selling it to, kids, no adults

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    • Agreed, too much generic slice of life moe. While I don’t quite agree on the fanservice part, I do wish there could be a much wider range of genres this season.

      And nowadays adults in Japan buy all the moe stuff up, so the moe > fanservice series trend is pretty big. They’re definitely targeting adult audiences with a lot of these moe series, which is no surprise after the runaway financial success called K-ON. Adults in Japan can be pretty creepy at times with their tastes in anime =___=;;

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      • Well it looks like moe otakus spend the most money (are the most crazy) on any kind of merchandise but anime about school girls without fanservice isn’t anime. Fanservice, ecchi, cool action or guro are things that make anime special. If they make too much moe then even moe otakus start to get bored. Some moe is good and OK but they shouldn’t overuse it.

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