Winter 2015 Episode Rankings – Week 1

New year, new season, same old routine! Except that I’ve picked up far less new series this time, as I’m focusing on rewatching older anime at the moment. Still, hopefully I’ve made the right choices, so that the quality of this lineup makes up for it! As usual, this first post will focus on the all-new, non-sequel shows… all four of them. 😛

One anime from my previous lineup that I’ve left out this season is Tribe Cool Crew, partly because it didn’t air this week, but also because it’s not the most varied of series, so it probably wouldn’t move up the rankings much anyway. I do intend to carry on watching it, however. 🙂

Mountains of matrimonial bliss in Death Parade!

Mountains of matrimonial bliss in Death Parade!

1 – Death Parade ep 1 

2 – Durarara!!x2 Shou ep 1 

3 – Parasyte -the maxim- ep 13 

4 – Aldnoah Zero S2 ep 1 

5 – JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders S2 ep 1 

6 – Tokyo Ghoul √A ep 1 

7 – Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei-bu Love! ep 1 

8 – Shirobako ep 13 

9 – Yowamushi Pedal: Grande Road ep 13 

10 – Ansatsu Kyoushitsu ep 1 

11 – Akatsuki no Yona ep 13 

12 – Yuri Kuma Arashi ep 1 

Another ordinary day in Anime Land.

Another ordinary day in Anime Land.

Death Parade was by far the most impressive of the all-new series, and the only one placing in the top half of this first week’s rankings! A newly wed couple end up forced to participate in a play-or-die survival game in a strange bar called Quindecim, with no memories of how they got there or of several other important events that lead up to it. They are forced to throw darts at a board where each segment corresponds to a part of their partner’s body, and as they play, they both gradually begin to regain their memories… and the result is so sadistically cruel that even I felt uncomfortable at times! 😮 A brilliant setting, but if it continued to focus purely on characters- and games-of-the-week then it could get repetitive; fortunately, it seems the staff of Quindecim will also be getting some development, so it may avoid that pitfall.

Another series that I liked, but that could end up getting repetitive was Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei-bu Love! The first proper magical boy anime, I believe. Fanservice from the get-go, as we’re introduced to the first members of the cast while they debate the meaning of chikuwabu in a public bath! 😮 And things only got more ridiculous when the boys were given the powers of ‘Love Making’ (embarrassing lines, transformation sequences, heart accessories and magical sticks, the usual) by a talking pink wombat who is currently possessing their elderly teacher. They then had to fight against a plain, overlooked pupil who had been turned into a chikuwabu monster, no doubt the first of many terrors summoned by the student council’s ‘Earth Conquest Club’ and their green hedgehog leader. Seems like it will be a good laugh. 😀

A tentacle monster in a middle school. Surprisingly, this isn't hentai!

A tentacle monster in a middle school. Surprisingly, this isn’t hentai!

The first episode of Ansatsu Kyoushitsu was also pretty ridiculous – a strange creature destroys the moon, and threatens to do the same to the Earth. Our only hope for survival? A class of middle school children whose performance was so disappointing that they were sent to some old, isolated building half-way up a mountain. They’ve now been tasked with the assassination of this monster… while he takes on the role of their teacher. And surprisingly, he’s really good at it! His many appendages and ability to move at speeds of up to Mach 20 make the class’ task a lot more challenging, however. 😛 This Koro-sensei (as he’s later named) should be a fun character, and I look forward to seeing the rest of the large cast (I think Class-E has 26 pupils?) being properly introduced and developed as well. 🙂

Finally, Yuri Kuma Arashi. It translates as ‘Lesbian Bear Storm’ or ‘Lily Bear Storm’, and it delivered all these things in the first episode! One day a meteor shower caused all the bears in the world to rise up and attack humans, so we built a big wall to keep them out. However, two bears managed to slip past this wall, disguise themselves as humans (why didn’t the titans think of that? 😮 ), and infiltrate all-girls school Arashigaoka Academy. Meanwhile, two girls at the academy named Kureha and Sumika are in a relationship, and tend to a lily garden together. So far, still coherent (though as weird as everything else this season). Then came the ‘Yuri Trial’, presided over by three bishonen bears… and a weird naked nectar lily licking sequence… yeah, it completely lost me in the end. I’m intrigued enough to keep it on, but it felt like it was all style and no substance so far.

I'm confused, but it's certainly interesting to watch if nothing else!

I’m confused, but it’s certainly interesting to watch if nothing else!

<< Autumn 2014 Episode Rankings – Week 12

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