Fall 2020 First Impressions: A Return to Form

If everything goes to plan, here’s what I’ll watch, in the rough order I’ll get to it (give or take Crunchyroll’s early-season promotions of giving one episode free):

  • Higurashi
  • HypMic
  • 100-man
  • Tonikawa
  • Munou na Nana
  • Grace of the Gods
  • Maou-jou
  • IWGP
  • Crusade (there was half an episode dropped in advance, so I have impressions for that too)
  • Akudama
  • Jujutsu Kaisen
  • Kamisama
  • Taiso
  • Moriarty
  • Golden Kamuy 3
  • Noblesse
  • Magatsu
  • Majo no Tabitabi (postponed until it actually arrives)

You’ll notice some anime are pushed back a week like I’ve done previously, but most aren’t. The subscription I mentioned in this round-up post means I now get to watch Funimation-licensed anime the day they drop, but Crunchyroll is more expensive per month to my knowledge and so isn’t worth the money just yet. Higurashi and HypMic are with Funimation and friends (AnimeLab, Wakanim etc.), while Tonikawa and 100-man are with Crunchyroll.


Higurashi (New)

Having watched the original first ep. only a week ago (a change in media manager meant I got more than my fill of Angel Beats instead of ol’ Higurashi), I knew most of the plot beats already, including that it doesn’t show its entire hand immediately (so I’ve tempered my expectations accordingly).

However, the game of old maid resulting in Keiichi’s face covered in doodles is skipped over in the new version and shown in the old one, in favour of a scavenger hunt for the marker that created the offending doodles. I think that’s a bit of a sticking point for some who grew up with the old one, but the hunt brings more movement while still conveying characters’ personalities. There’s also the bombshell at the very end of the episode of Rika, which may not have been in the original. (Update: One Anime News Network review reveals it’s not there.)

Notes:

  • I’m still wondering…why remake something that’s not even 20 years old yet?
  • Aw, they got rid of the KFC reference…
  • LOL, I saw Type Moon in the credits list.
  • The character designs have shifted a bit, courtesy of the Bakemonogatari character designer Akio Watanabe.

..

.

HypMic – Rhyme Anima

I was either expecting things to go very wrong or very right. My impressions are more on the positive side, but I can’t believe they made Samatoki almost only say the F word in his profanities (to almost caricature levels). As much as that is correct to his character, people don’t just stick to the F word, right? (Or maybe I find that funny because I wrote Chuuya from Bungou Stray Dogs much the same way in 2016.)

HypMic is full of puns, so it’s interesting that an entire team was assembled to translate the raps to English. (For example, take “Brother Ichi”. It’s a direct translation, but the fans have always left the term alone, so I’m slightly thrown off by it because “Ichi-niisan” is 1/2/3, with different readings to “Hifumi”.) It’s good they’re translating the plot-relevant songs though – it’s hard work for the translator, but the fans need to know the meaning of the raps in case they come up later somehow.

Furthermore, I was worried about that CGI. So they’re treating this series like Idolish7 in that rap scenes have CGI models? *scratches chin*

Notes (there’s a lot of them and I have even more to go up on Courage):

  • For those not in the know, I first met HypMic in 2017 on Tumblr and tried my hand at translating a relationship chart for it…that ended pretty badly. I then saw HypMic again in 2019 when in Japan – mini clear files in a Lawson, to be precise – and somewhat regretted I got a volume of Touken Ranbu manga instead of that, so when I played Mudae in Discord in January this year, I spun Gentaro and, through him, learnt this might be the next best thing I could get into, and it’s kept me going through the most of the year since. I’m a Jakurai stan first and a Gentaro stan second, although I have soft spots for Jyushi and Doppo.
  • LOL, Dice is ignoring Otome…What a hint.
  • Paper? Never expected that from Gentaro’s HypMic. I always thought Gentaro’s mic was the “scare people with bright lights” type. I also had a problem imagining how the mics manifested (a worry specifically warranted by the anime), but I think the anime will help me decide/see how that works.
  • I learnt the ep. title from reading Twitter coverage of an Abema variety show by [voice actors for] Doitsutare Honpo and Buster Bros, so that’s not surprising, but where does the quote come from? Update: According to Goodreads, it’s by Janne Teller.
  • Gentaro’s “writing in genkou yooshi” style seems to be inspired by Bungou Stray Dogs or the like.
  • I thought, prior to the anime coming out, the OP sounded like an anime OP and not a rap song (which is disappointing, considering this is a rap project), but it actually starts as a rap song and then devolves into something more anime-sounding which is more like a call to arms. Appropriate, given the words “ends corruption”.
  • Does Mad Trigger Crew mean swearing and stuff exploding on the dozen? It would make for a good action movie!
  • Ohhhhhh…the infamous cigarette kiss [from PV 2, which I did find an un-region-locked version of after a while]. I didn’t think it was going to be this early in the anime, but in retrospect, that’s what trailers do – show content from ep 1 to hype stuff up.
  • They even translated Gentaro’s weird way with pronouns and writerly language as old-timey speech.
  • It seems this “Seibo Shibuya” is a parody of Seibu Shibuya.
  • That wolf [fang] pose is cool. It’s almost a heart, but also suggests viciousness.
  • O…Oh! That’s actually really, really funny! Instead of “Doppo-chin”, the translation is “Doppomine”, a play on both both “Doppo mine” and “dopamine” (or something?).
  • How is Gentaro dangerous??? I can see why each of the others can be interpreted as such, though.
  • …there appear to be several Buddhist shrines in Shinjuku [that look like that one in the background in the Matenrou shot]. Trying to find the correct one would require more knowledge.
  • Reading reviews reveals people were less harsh on this than I thought because most people have picked up it’s not meant to be taken seriously.

..

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100-man (I’m Standing on a Million Lives)

I saw the manga around on Magazine Pocket as well as in a local bookstore pre-COVID, but whether I’ll like it is another story. I thought I would have to watch this a week late, but CR has it available right now.

I’m not compelled to continue, but I’m not sure I should be passing this off yet when it might not have shown its entire hand just yet…

…y’know what? I can hit pause and wait for it to run its course.

Notes:

  • …what is that blue…thing?
  • Quest de Pon (in the corner of the blue guy’s sign) is a parody of Panel de Pon, I assume.
  • Is Yosuke gonna get a harem…? Oh dear.
  • Maybe it’s future!Yosuke [who caused all this]? That would be a bit cliché.
  • Yuusha Shikkaku. I’m not sure if that’s a No Longer Human parody, but if it was…it was kinda bad(?)

..

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Tonikawa

This wasn’t bad by any means and I have little, if any, nostalgia for Kenjiro Hata and Hayate, but it’s made for a male audience and the comedy missed the mark, so I just had to be a zombie for 24 minutes and let it wash over me.

Romance needs something to pull me in and it would become excruciating and/or boring if it didn’t have that, so I’m dropping it. No offence to anyone who likes it and it’s better than 100-man in the basics, but it’s just not for me.

Notes:

  • The anime gave me Darling in the Franxx vibes out of the gate and the character designs remind me of BokuBen
  • I like how the one girl gets irked at the split-thingy and then pushes it away.
  • Tsukuba University exists.
  • I predicted a few lines before they happened. I haven’t read the manga, meaning it’s quite predictable for me (except for Truck-kun, where I wrongly – but also somewhat jokingly – guessed he would be isekaid).
  • “Yuzaki” could’ve been made of different kanji to Nasa’s, so that’s why Tsukasa has to confirm it.
  • LOL, a plant for the married couple to take care of for as long as the plant lasts. Cute. *cue Kaguya “how cute” face*
  • Is Nasa ever going to meet the inlaws…?
  • …in the end, Nasa is a horny guy after all…*sigh*

..

.


Ratings

Watching:

  • HypMic (1 ep)
  • Higurashi (1 ep, may move down if it continues to be too much of a slow burn/tries to grab at a nostalgia I don’t have)

Paused:

  • 100-man (1 ep)

Dropped:

  • Tonikawa (1 ep)

So, how’s your fall season so far? (For a refresher on what I’m excited for, check this post.)

7 thoughts on “Fall 2020 First Impressions: A Return to Form

Add yours

  1. I get your comment about Tonikawa since there is a specific audience in mind and the Hayate references is already seen in the first episode with one cameo character. Even if it looks like Nasa places Tsukasa on a pedestal for marrying her at the start at least it doesn’t drag on for an entire season leading up to the marriage. But dropping it as early as episode 1 is a bit much.

    For Higurashi, I can’t comment anything else since I never saw the original anime and VN. I do love how it sets the tone around the calm moments in the small town. Can’t wait for hell to break loose when it comes. I think it’s also a good choice to have Akio Watanabe’s designs since its updated to the current landscape and it’s close enough to the original designs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There was a Hayate reference? Who was that?

      I overloaded myself in the spring/summer only to not finish in time for both and so I have to be brutal with the fall stuff or else I’m not going to keep any of the storylines straight (because I’m over a season behind on Fruits Basket, for one thing and Healin’ Good PreCure won’t stop until 2021, which only makes my burden heavier). That said, I do sometimes revisit dropped anime and I gave Tonikawa a provisional 60 (meaning I think it average) so don’t think of it as entirely final.

      I appreciate the fact the marriage came at the start, but 1) it’s in the synopsis and 2) it’s the same as Ore Monogatari in the sense the couple take only an episode to hook up (Ore Monogatari landed its comedy for me though, giving it an automatic edge), so the end result was hardly surprising.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. In the office scene where Nasa and Tsukasa get their marriage certificate the one who accepts it is Klaus, the head butler from the Sanzenin Mansion. Though he doesn’t look recognizable at first glance with how moe the art-style is and I had to take a closer look. And I didn’t know Ore Monogatari actually had the same skit in mind too.

        Liked by 1 person

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