Winter Anime 2014, Part Three

I’m still watching the first episodes coming out. Man, it seems like a ton of anime this season. I’m happy to say I’ve found a few winners in this batch.

D-Fragments is hilarious! A trio of delinquents (and their childhood friend) encounter a game development club. Unfortunately this club needs new members, and it’s not taking no for an answer! It reminds me of Baka and Test and Haganai, but in a good way. Rapid fire jokes that all are funny, and with some great characters. If a girl ever mentions that she’s a fire type, be very careful of her dreaded moe-moe attack. I think D-frag will be one of the season’s best shows.

Chuunbiyo Ren also is great. It’s nice to see the old gang back together and in full delusion mode. Even better, it seems that everyone has made some level of peace with their delusions, and you can enjoy both sides of the story without qualms. Rika is turned out of her apartment abruptly as the lease isn’t renewed. Can she deal with living with the Dark Flame Master, avoiding her “priestess” sister, and dealing with normal life in her second year of high school? It looks ready to keep up the high standards the first season had. You can watch the first season on Hulu, but the OAV isn’t out here yet.

Witchcraft Works was better than I thought it would be. A high school student suffers day-to-day because he just happens to sit next to the school’s ojou-sama. But one day an army of robotic bunnies attacks him, and he finds out that the girl is actually a witch sent to protect him. Some over the top carnage ensues, but it’s a lot harder to avoid evil witches when they decide to become transfer students at your very own school!

It had really interesting character design and strong magical battles. I’m not so keen on the reverse princess thing, but it came out strong for something I didn’t really expect much of.

Hamatora however is only okay. A group of private detectives take jobs and solve cases. However, what’s different is that they all are Minimum Holdres-people who can manifest superpowers depending on a condition. While the Police finds Hamatora useful for dealing with the cases they can’t get to, it looks like someone else may be targeting them.

It’s a pretty anime, but it feels a bit too close to the concept of Get Backers! to be comfortable with. In the comments, people kept comparing it to other anime. It’s not really bad, and I like the whole “agency of people” idea, but the first episode struggled with setting its own identity. It’s stylish, and again, the anime is very nicely animated. Tons of color and vividness.

Chuunbiyo Ren would be PG, the rest PG-13. Mostly just battles. Witchcraft Works evokes some hilarity with making one of its characters named Obama-kun, but people aren’t sure what to make of the ending, in which five cute enemy witches sing a peppy song while being put through every medieval torture of the period. It’s super-deformed, but especially for Christians it was a dark time in which we sinned and did those to people in real life.

Depending on how you feel about magic, you might also not like Witchcraft Works. If you can just see it as a plot device, no problem. If you think witchcraft in fiction opens you up to bad things, you probably don’t read this blog anyways, but skip it.

Amazingly, there’s even more anime coming out. I have to say that for around fifteen bucks a month, having both Crunchyroll and Funimation is an awesome bargain. I’ll be checking out more series as they are simulacast. It looks like a feast for anime fans this season.

2 Comments on “Winter Anime 2014, Part Three”

  1. notleia says:

    As someone interested in ditching traditional cable/satellite because I’m poor and don’t want dumb channels I never watch, are Crunchyroll and Funimation their own sites or are they being hosted by places like Hulu? I’ve debated subscribing to Hulu, but I don’t know if I’d actually watch much of anything that I can’t already/won’t at some point get through my Netflix by means of streaming or disc.

  2. dmdutcher says:

    Crunchyroll is it’s own site. Funimation has its own streaming service,and Hulu often gets anime from all anime producers. All of them have tons more anime than Netflix ever will, but both Crunchy and Fun are limited to that. Hulu has TV, movies, and anime, but the commericals even for Hulu Plus suck, and you can’t watch anime simulcast there. That is, released as soon as it is in Japan.

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