[Summer 2017] First Impressions


Just about all the premiere’s have started. And I figured I would give an update about how I feel about the ones I’ve had on the list and some of those that I picked up out of curiosity. Now, most of you know that I usually finish the anime’s that I start regardless if they’re amazing or intolerably bad. It’s possible a lot of these may end up going “on-hold” but I’ll try not to do that.  Also, I’ve found that I’m bad with doing the whole weekly/episodic review, so while I MAY attempt it, it’s most likely I’ll end up with a mid-season and a final thoughts type post.

I’ve noticed there are quite a few short form anime’s this season, and I have to say, this format is really growing on me! Anyways, this is going to be a pretty long post since I ended up watching a lot of premieres so please feel free to use the following page jumps to navigate to the ones you’re interested in. With that being said, let’s get to it!

Welcome to the Ballroom (Ballroom e Youkoso
Katsugeki/ Touken Ranbu
Keppeki Danshi! Aoyama-kun
Dive!!
Love & Lies (Koi to Uso)
Netsuzuo TRap
Fate Apocrypha
Saiyuki Reload Blast
Elegant Yokai Apartment Life
Tsurezure Children
Vatican Miracle Examiner
Restaurant to Another World
Konbini Kareshi
Aho Girl


Welcome to the Ballroom (Ballroom e Youkoso)

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From the moment I heard about this anime, I had been looking forward to this one the most. When I turned 18, I had a cotillion, a debut. I along with my court of 18 total practiced the entire summer leading up to the big day. We did a lot of ballroom type dances, and boy did I love every single second of those practices! We did the waltz, the foxtrot, the cha-cha and the tango just to name several of the dances we did that night. I enjoyed learning all of these dances so much so that I heavily considered pursuing ballroom dancing at a competitive level. I felt pretty good about my ability in learning and picking it up and I loved the way it made me feel.

What I love about ballroom dancing specifically is the gracefulness of dance. There is a specific emphasis on the posture and frame; straightened backs and a particular way to hold your body in relation to your partner. The fact that the upper half is stationary while your lower body moves in counted steps across the floor in a fluid motion is really beautiful and actually quite difficult to maintain. Especially when you’re not really supposed to look down to watch what you’re feet are doing.

Posture was a key element in this premiere episode. The protagonist Fujita Tatara, is a bit down on himself in the premiere as he isn’t quite sure what to do with his future. He slouches and often looks down which is an indicator a lack of self-esteem and confidence. The first thing Sengoku does upon meeting Fujita is straighten out his posture, and in the mirror we see how much that makes a difference to Fujita. So far this has been my favorite scene of the first episode. Although, Sengoku was a little dramatic in straightening him up.

With that being said, I’m really looking forward to this one. The premiere episode was exciting enough to keep me locked in and wanting more.  It’s lived up to the hype so far!

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Katsugeki/Touken Ranbu

The only thing I know about Touken Ranbu is that it’s a web browser game in which you bring famous historical swords to life to defeat evil forces trying to change the course of history. I’m a bit of a history buff and love the fact the swords have been anthropomorphised. So I started doing research the moment Hanamaru was about to premiere. I knew there were two anime’s coming and I was anxiously awaiting Ufotable‘s  anime to come. Hanamaru was a good introduction, but there were way too many characters being introduced and not too much action happening. If you’re looking to see a slice of life about the daily life at the citadel then it might just be for you.

While my favorite Touken Danshi (or Toudan = sword men) has yet to appear, I am completely in love with the animation of this. I knew Ufotable would not disappoint when it came to action scenes and character designs.  This was a far cry from winter 2016’s Touken Ranbu: Hanamaru. This season’s Touken Ranbu will hopefully adhere to some plot and a better look at why and how things came to be. This one is definitely at the top of my list right now; I’m just holding my breath till Mikazuki Munechika appears.

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Keppeki Danshi! Aoyama-kun

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Sports anime (obviously I’m drawn into that). The first episode had me laughing at how ridiculous Aoyama-kun was in terms of being a clean-freak. Someone on twitter nailed it in the following description: “it’s a cross between Sakamoto (Sakamoto desu ga?), Tanaka-kun (Tanaka-kun is Always Listless) and a really good soccer player.”

The only problem I can see stemming from this show is how the clean-freak gimmick can grow old if it becomes to predictable. But hopefully I don’t lose interest as I found this to be a great comedy to kick off the summer season.

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Dive!!

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I have mixed feelings about the start of this anime. This particular premiere wasn’t filled with a TON of excitement compared to the top two, and I was really hyped about this one as well. However, I’m not completely let down by the show just yet. I thought the animation was done well, and that there is an emphasis on the sport of diving. From watching diving competitions via the Olympics, I know how important it is to not have that splash back upon the entry of the water as they submerge in.  I was in awe by how the characters were able to achieve it; especially Tomo when he finally opens his eyes upon diving. He might have a natural talent that rivals Youichi – but only if he were really to hone his skill.

But I felt that something was missing from this premiere. The characters seemed to fall a little flat. Youichi (the blonde sugawara) is a talented diver that’s won countless competitions, I wonder if it’s just his character lacking a rival or something to push him to be better. He seems to be the best diver in the competitions he’s in so maybe no one comes close-which is why he just seems so bored. It’s like he feels obligated to compete because of his family history in the sport.  Tomo is another story. He dives on a whim, and although he has the rigor needed for practices, and he seems to be completely obsessed with the sport! It’s all he thinks about and values – but is that because of the sport or an obsession with Youichi? I’m not sure what his drive is for diving. Youichi had asked him and Tomo said that he just didn’t want to get left behind on the lower platforms. That to me is a weak response. Anyways, hopefully the story will gain its’ footing in the next couple of episodes!

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Love and Lies (Koi to Uso)

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So far this premiere has succeeded in getting me to really want to see the second episode (that wasn’t in my most anticipated list). I had written that the premise alone was what really got me interested and so far so good. The dilemma that the main character faces is intriguing. I’m curious to see what he will do with the fact that he has his dream girl within his reach while also having to deal with the assigned marriage partner that is about to impede into his life. I also couldn’t help but notice the body language of the girl he’s been in love with; something about her doesn’t sit well with me. It appears she’s hiding something, does she also have an assigned marriage partner that she hasn’t announced? Even though their feelings are mutual, why did she run away when he got his marriage assignment; she could’ve talked about it with him. Ah, I’m trying to assign logic to her, but I’m hoping these kinds of questions eventually get sorted.

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Netsuzou TRap

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I’m new to this genre; a complete n00b. I’m used to reading and watching more BL titles, so I figured I should really try to give Yuri a shot. The premise is a little twisted, but that’s precisely why i was so interested in it. I like these kinds of stories.

The feeling I got from watching this short was really interesting to say the least. It was disturbing yet enthralling to watch as Hotaru seduces her best friend into doing things with her that should be reserved for her boyfriend. The fact they’re carrying on a little tryst has me intrigued how this will affect everyone’s relationships.

Hotaru is definitely a cunning individual and Yuma is a bit of a pushover to allow her best friend to do these kinds of things. But the moment she started comparing her first kiss with her boyfriend Takeda to the shared kiss with Hotaru is already forging complicated relationships. How long before the boys notice something’s amiss? What will their reactions be? Would they even care?

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 Fate/Apocrypha

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As most of you know, I am a fan of the Fate series.  I haven’t watched many of the spin-offs outside of Fate/Stay Night series, so this is my first.

At first I thought this was going to be completely different, but it seems to be set parallel to the events to the story of Fate/Stay Night. So it was nice to see some familiar elements, especially the Clock Tower, which is where UBW ended – Rin and Shirou had enrolled to be students here. It appears that there are a few saber’s in the setting (I may be wrong) so I’m looking forward to seeing what servants will be coming out. If Lancer shows up again here, I might fangirl a little. If Gilgamesh and Archer show up – even better. But I’m doubtful I’ll see such familiar faces.

Either way, I’m looking forward to this anime. I don’t know that I’ll love it at much as the Fate/Stay Night series, since I usually stay away from spin-off’s. I often feel that I get overloaded with the lore of it all, it took such effort to understand Fate/Stay Night as it is, I don’t know that I’m willing to invest much more past that with spin-off’s.

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Saiyuki Reload Blast

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Saiyuki has several seasons before this, so I debated if it was truly something I wanted to invest my time in. But after reading up on the synopis it appeared that this was a new adventure for this group, I figured that I could maybe jump in and see what happens.

By and far action has always been one of my favorite genres in anime and in films. It was the main driver for me to pick up this show as I was interested in fighting scenes since a lot of the anime I chose this season wasn’t as action-oriented outside of Touken Ranbu.

Upon watching the premiere of this show, I didn’t feel like I missed anything. Sure the Sanzou party is still a mysterious group, but hopefully they’ll reveal more about themselves. I didn’t expect them to be some kind of religious group fighting demons. But hey, what the heck. I enjoyed what I wanted because I mean who doesn’t like seeing blood splatter across their screen like that?

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Elegant Yokai Apartment Life

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You know what’s funny about this particular anime? I was browsing the manga application Manga Rock and started bookmarking a ton of manga to read. When I saw this anime, I kept telling myself man this show really looks familiar, that main character really really looks familiar. So I went to check my bookmark list and well what do you know, I had planned to read this at some point…but anyways, I digress. Did any of you guys happen to watch Summer 2016’s Morose Mononokean? Because, it’s got that kind of vibe to it. While this show appears to be interesting and has the potential of being something good it seemed a bit average and lackluster in really grabbing my attention and making me fall in love with it. The pretty boys alone in this one can’t fully save it, but I’ll keep watching and keep you updated!

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Tsurezure Children

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I was surprised to see that this one was more of a short form anime; although it does make sense since this is based on a 4-koma manga. There’s a focus on several relationships with varying degrees of humor and cuteness. Ah, young love. That’s what I think of when I was watching this. The young puppy love we all experience in middle school with crushes on our senpai’s, being attracted to the delinquent and even possibly coming to terms that you’ve fallen in love with your best friend and don’t know how to tell them. So far this cute little anime has gotten me interested. I thought I had already found my favorite short form anime of the year, but with this summer’s line-up they may prove me wrong.

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Vatican Miracle Examiner (Vatican Kiseki Chousakan)

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As someone that grew up Catholic, I was immediately intrigued by the premise of this show. A group of people investigating the validity of miracles via religion and science is an interesting combination. You have Robert Nicholas who specializes in the scripture and then you have Joseph Kou Hiraga (Why his name is so long I have no clue) who is a genius scientist.

So far the beginning of this show has me drawn in. But the downside is, I fell asleep the first time I tried to watch it, and the second time I had to re-watch several scenes. This show is so dense with information that the dialogue is too fast for me to catch up. I get it, these characters are smart – but do they have to speak at a lightning fast speed? Overall, I’m still interested in the show because the Catholic in me likes to see these references to the religion and to see how the story is going to play out. I’ve already made note of some buildings to include in my Ani-Reality series in watching the first episode! 🙂 I’m hoping to get more architecture out of this at the very least.

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Restaurant to Another World (Isekai Shokudou)

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I guess I’m still new to the Isekai type shows. I don’t know I have a bit of a hard time with though I’m a huge fantasy lover. Maybe because Re:Zero didn’t sit well with me? But, I decided to give this one a shot because: food. Food show’s are always a draw-in for me.

So far this episode introduces us to a few characters, but the explanation of how these characters find this random restaurant and floating door is a mystery. We just know that the door changes locations and the door is magical. There’s a dragon that’s able to transform into a human form that loves beef stew, and a demon that’s now a part-time waitress.

Best thing about his show: The food looks delicious. But outside of that this show was unfortunately nothing special. While the show is It was entertaining, but I’m left with more questions than a need to continue.

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Konbini Kareshi

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I picked this up out of curiousity after seeing someone else write their first impression of it. It’s another romance genre type with interwoven stories of different characters. I feel like it’s a bit like Tsurezure Children but this particular show didn’t give me the same fluffy feels that the previous did. The story is pretty flat, and so were the characters, nothing really progressed in this first episode and sometimes I felt that the dialogue was a little slow and drawn out and that there was a bit of dead air.

However, towards the end there was some progression between a few of the characters – that kinda got me revved up but not quite as much. The main storyline seems to be about childhood friends that probably have mutual feelings for one another but don’t know how to tell each other out of fear of rejection or changing the things that are already between them. But whatever happens, I’ll still be keeping my eye on this one. After all, I don’t drop things.

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Aho Girl

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Literally a short form anime about an idiot girl and her responsible guy bff. There were about 4 chapters within this first episode. This is pretty much slapstick comedy that I just picked up to watch out of boredom. It’s good filler time for the other shows, but other than that, there’s not much else to really say about this particular one. It’s not exactly thought provoking.

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Well that wraps up all my first impressions. They all varied in length depending on how I really felt stood about about them. So, if some felt really short that’s because it was probably pretty average with nothing else to say.

My post is probably the last first impressions as most of the ani-bloggers are now on week 2 of their reviews. But hey, better late than never.  Anyways, did you guys catch any of these shows? Which shows are still on your radar?

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16 thoughts on “[Summer 2017] First Impressions

  1. Takuto's Anime Cafe says:

    This is exciting—we seem to share most of the same thoughts on Ballroom, DIVE!!, and Apocrypha! Guess it’s still too early to decide, but I’m a little scared for Fate. The 24-ep count should help ease the burden of 30+ characters, each with their own desires for the Grail. And I was also a bit underwhelmed with DIVE….hopefully things look up, as the animation does look quite nice. Loving this summer!

    Liked by 1 person

    • heyitszel says:

      Oh yay!!! I haven’t seen the latest episodes of Fate! But up to date with the others! I’m super stoked for ballroom and yes definitely hoping to see more development in dive! Yay Takuuu I’m glad we have the same thoughts!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. ameithyst says:

    I’m sure you’ll love Ballroom e Youkoso! And is Mikazuki your favorite toudan, too? 😀 (I want to see Yamanbagiri, too, though I don’t think he’ll appear much on Katsugeki.)

    I’m also thinking Misaki’s hiding something. 100+ chapters in, though, the light hasn’t been shed on it yet. :/

    I’m really enjoying Tsurezure Children! It’s a good mix of comedy and romance for me.

    I just realized that I haven’t watched the 2nd episode for Dive, Keppeki Danshi! Aoyama-kun and Konbini Kareshi though I’m updated with the others. Sighs. I’ll probably just wait for the latter two to end then I’ll try to binge-watch them and see if I’ll be able to finish them.

    I wasn’t planning to watch Saiyuki Reload Blast yet because I plan on re-watching the first ones. I used to watch it when it was airing on a local TV channel, but I barely remember anything about it.

    And aren’t you going to watch Kakegurui? :>

    Liked by 1 person

    • heyitszel says:

      I LOVE MIKAZUKI (see my Top 10 swordsmen MCM I tried to capture what I love about him in a paragraph lolol) Yamanbigiri is the one that wears the tattered sheet over himself right?

      Also, I don’t play Touken Ranbu – but I wish I could. I loke Mikazuki solely based on characterization and character design/aesthetics. he’s just so beautiful!! Ah, don’t get me started on him. I can fangirl for days. LOL

      So far I’m in absolute LOVE with Ballroom e Youkoso! Ah, it’s so good!! The animation is great and so is the characterization. Fujita is the kind of protagonist you can really get behind and root for!!! Did you watch episode 2!?! I was screaming when Sengoku saw the silhouette of the girl in Fujita’s arms as he was practicing!! Is this a love triangle?! Are you reading the manga!? Ahh!!!

      I’m behind some of these series now (koi to uso is definitely one of them) I might end up binge-watching a lot of these as well. hahaha

      I figured I could watch all the other Saiyuki’s after this…though it’ll be hard to track them down

      also, I keep meaning to watch Kakegurui! I knew I was forgetting something on this list.

      Liked by 1 person

      • ameithyst says:

        I just left a comment there. Yep. I love his drama of not being the genuine sword since he’s just a copy.

        I think that’s a pretty legit reason. Mikazuki is just sososo easily loveable! The character designer must have been on a lot of pressure doing him because the sword is one of the greatest. But s/he did a great job!

        IKR?! I’m so glad Production IG handles it. I know some people have been turned off by the necks, but whatever, they’ll be missing a good show if they dismiss it because of that. And yes! Watch out, it’s going to get more exciting once the Mikasa Cup starts! (I think it’s happening next episode from the looks of the preview.) Yes, I’m reading the manga and I’m just so excited to see my beloved arcs/scenes animated! Love triangle? Romance isn’t much focused on as a subplot so things are quite vague for now.Fujita clearly has an interest for Shizuku, but not sure if it’s love or just an admiration of some sort. Buuuut there will be some kind of a triangle happening soon after the Mikasa Cup so wait for it. 😉

        Hahaha! It’s my first time being able to wait weekly like this, though I think I’ll stop next week since new semester’s starting. I may binge-watch everything after all. lol
        I don’t mind not being able to watch Koi to Uso since I ended up reading the manga. But I’m curious on where they will end the anime.

        You should definitely watch Kakegurui! The art, story, and characters are all interesting so far! Especially the female MC! 😀

        Like

        • heyitszel says:

          To be honest, the whole neck thing is really jarring when you first see it, but considering that ballroom is all about holding a frame and posture, I think the exaggeration is well thought out. I don’t mind it at all. I think it’s done with that in mind. So while it’s jarring, I totally agree that people will miss out on a good show if they decide to dismiss it just because of that!!

          Ah, I’m sooooooo excited for what’s ahead!! LOL – if you have LINE we could fangirl there too!!

          I may start reading the manga after the season ends..but yet. omg..I love this show. I really do. hahahah!

          Okay, I’ll def. check out kakegurui this weekend! 😀

          Liked by 1 person

          • ameithyst says:

            Wow. This is a long overdue reply because of other stuff. I’m not even updated with the latest Ballroom e Youkoso episode. T_T

            How have you liked it so far? 😀 I do have a LINE, but I don’t have a lot of people to talk to there, so that’ll be cool!

            Did you check out Kakegurui yet? I thought it started good but later on, I think it’s getting less interesting to me. >_<

            Liked by 1 person

          • heyitszel says:

            I’m behind as well haha!! It’s okay! And I love it!! 😀

            Haven’t watched much anime as of late but I’ll get back to it eventually!! Oh yay! If ever on LINE you can message me. Username: heyitszel

            Like

  3. Grimsabr says:

    Touken Ranbu has definitely managed to keep me interested, and as a Fate fanboy I am loving Apocrypha! A-1 arent doing to bad in my opinion, though I think Ufotable could do a better job in regards to sound and animation, especially comparing it to Touken Ranbu right now.

    I second what someone else said, you should try Kakegurui. Its easily my favourite show of the season so far :3

    Liked by 1 person

    • heyitszel says:

      I’ll definitely have to check it out! Everyone’s been talking about it! 🙂

      Oo, I need to get caught up on Fate. LOL I literally just watched the first ep only. Good to know that someone like Fate as much as I do. lol. :3

      Touken Ranbu has the upperhand with Ufotable backing them. so hyped for it. LOL

      Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Lethargic Ramblings says:

    I FINALLY got around to reading this (I’ve been very busy moving house, so I haven’t had the chance to read much of anyone’s stuff!)

    Some great First Impressions here! It’s nice to see someone aside from myself has been enjoying Nestuzou TRap. Really glad you’re enjoying Welcome to the Ballroom as well.

    Enjoy the season!

    Liked by 1 person

    • heyitszel says:

      LOL I know, but I’m already behind on most of these. I haven’t watched more of Love and Lies since episode 1. Gonna have to catch up soon. lol. I can’t believe the season is already halfway done.

      Liked by 1 person

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