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[lvlln’s Take] Summer 2010 First Impressions – Ookami-san and the Seven Friends, Highschool of the Dead, et al.

Alright, the Summer 2010 anime season has started, and pretty much all the shows I’ve been keeping an eye on have had their 1st episodes air. I’ve already written on Amagami SS, which I found to be rather plain, but there are other shows I’ve been paying attention to that I’ve actually enjoyed a lot more.

I wonder if those pussy gloves will ever be explained or just be one of those in-jokes.

Ookami-san and the Seven Friends

A surprisingly entertaining first episode. I had passed it off as just another high school romantic comedy before this season started, but its amusing take on the Cinderella story both sets it apart from a regular romcom and leaves me wanting to see more of its “adaptations” of children’s stories. The protagonist and main love story is pretty typical, and that fight at the end reminded me too much of Shirou from Fate/stay Night – the obvious parallel with his protecting Saber from Berserker’s attack – but Ookami-san herself was very likable. Not many boxing girls in animu. And Satomi Arai as the narrator is great. Her distinct voice works well for the cynical and sarcastic narration that keeps breaking the 4th wall and is a pleasure to listen to overall (though there are others who don’t like her voice as much as I).

Way to be useless, Rei. Hopefully you'll make up for it in future episodes.

Highschool of the Dead

Zombies and fanservice! That was pretty much what I was expecting, and that was the 1st episode. Darker at some parts than I expected, but also kept a sense of humor. The two bffs who died about halfway into the episode was a great example of the show’s dark comedy.

Rei was very annoying, which is a shame, because her voice actor Marina Inoue is capable of so much more. I’m not expecting big things from the story, but if it can keep up the good action and the fittingly ridiculous comedy, this could be very good. Yukari Fukui is yet to be heard. That I’m very much looking forward to.

I've never seen School Rumble, but Shino reminds me a lot of one of the characters from that. I don't think I've ever seen someone so blatantly and unapologetically raunchy, though.

Seitokai Yakuindomo

Wow, this is dirty! Its style of dry humor isn’t unusual in anime, but I’ve never seen it taken so far. Almost everything out of Shino’s mouth is something related to sex in the raunchiest way possible. Like talking about the tightness of her lips. And it’s all at a breakneck pace, hitting us with jokes continually before we’re given a chance to recover. I like it, though not everyone seems to. I didn’t expect much out of this show, but the level of comedy in this first episode leaves me impressed. I’m definitely going to be watching more.

I do appreciate that Anime no Chikara is using fresh material. I had no idea what to expect from Maya, and I'm glad I didn't.

Occult Academy

It certainly doesn’t hurt that Maya is an Akiha lookalike. She was my favorite Tsukihime heroine, after all. After the disappointment of Sora no Woto and the mixed reactions that Senkou no Night Raid got, I wasn’t expecting much out of this 3rd Anime no Chikara project. Given the topic of the show, I was expecting something a bit dark and moody, but what I got instead was something that was pretty wacky and funny. A lot of physical/visual comedy was used to good effect, and I enjoyed seeing Maya’s various deformed reaction faces. Can’t say much about the story which I found to be a bit confusing, but I think it would be better if the show never got too serious. I’m not alone in being surprised and impressed by the silliness in this 1st episode.

Also, Kana Hanazawa playing the possessed girl was a blast to watch/listen to, especially after hearing her as Tenshi last season in Angel Beats!

Others

So I’ve been more or less impressed with the stuff I’ve seen so far. Perhaps my expectations were just too low going into this season – the only show out of these that I had been remotely looking forward to was Highschool of the Dead, and even then, I wasn’t expecting anything more than some mindless violence. But, 1 episode in, there are a bunch of shows that look promising this season.

  • Nameless already made a post on the 1st episode of Mitsudomoe. I couldn’t make it past about 5-8 minutes. The art style just put me off. That first gag with the misinterpretation of “anything goes” was pretty funny, I’ll admit. And it has received some positive reactions from various other blogs. It’s just that I just feel dirty watching it.
  • I also could only make it about 1/3 of the way into Shufuku no Campanella. The colors really were nice, but that was about it. Everything else was generic and way too sugary sweet.
  • I haven’t gotten a chance to check out The Legend of the Legendary Heroes yet, but it’s on my list.




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