First episodes run, first impressions.

I usually don’t like talking about an anime series or making an opinion about an anime until I’ve watched the first season or at least 12 episodes of the series. But, recently I’ve been trying out some new anime, so I thought I would write about my first impressions after watching just one or two episodes. Considering that I probably wouldn’t have watched enough of any one of these anime to really see any story or character development, I’ll try to avoid commenting on that. I’ll be working with the assumption that all of these series will remain good or get better in future episodes. After all, if I wasn’t looking forward to future episodes, I wouldn’t be watching them.

Of the anime that I am currently watching, the new ones that I’ll be reviewing are: Tsukimichi, Peach boy riverside, Touken ranbu, Tokyo ESP, Case study of Vanitas, and BEM. Some of these anime I started watching because they showed up on my recommendations on Crunchyroll, some I started watching because they were on the recently added list on Funimation, and some I found while browsing both of these websites and the descriptions sounded good.

little witch gazing up at the rising Earth on the horizon
isekai planet

Tsukimichi: Moonlit fantasy seemed almost to be a parody of a traditional isekai anime. Instead of dying or some other horrible accident happening to the main character (Misumi Makoto) and then being transported to another world, he was actually pre-scheduled to come to the other world. Makoto was supposed to have already been fully informed about the whole agreement. He wasn’t. In a traditional isekai the main character would be transported to the other world by a benevolent god or higher being and be given all sorts of super powers and be placed in the very cushy job of “Hero”. He wasn’t. The “benevolent god” actually kept on complaining about how ugly Makoto was (he’s average looking, she was just picky) and she couldn’t wait to get him out of her throne room. She had already found some other people to be the heroes, so Makoto wouldn’t get that either. The god didn’t really want to give Makoto any powers, so she gave him the token power of understanding all speech and then chucked him to the outer reaches of her world to do whatever as long as Makoto staid out of the way. Thankfully the nice god from our world that had recruited Makoto had already given him a little boost of power before sending him on to the other world, so Makoto still ended up being pretty heroic regardless. The beginning of this series seems funny and it’s a nice change to poke fun at the horribly over populated genre of isekai anime.

Peach boy riverside is a spin on the traditional Japanese folktale of the little boy found inside a peach that grows up to slay demons. This anime starts with the idea that what if there had been more than one peach? The story centers around Princess Sally and her search for a boy that once visited her castle. There have already been some hints that Princess Sally might be a peach girl, but maybe I’m wrong. Along her journey the princess meets a “demi-human” aka a bunny girl named Frau. They decide to team up for safer traveling. Pretty soon in their travels they have to deal with some serious discrimination against Frau for being a demi-human. Because, evidently, bunny girls are scary? So far, I like the anime. I like the interesting change in a very traditional folktale and the anime really doesn’t seem too concerned with staying even a little bit historically accurate. Sometimes it’s nice to watch an anime that doesn’t take itself too seriously. At times it feels just a pinch fan-servicey, but it doesn’t get in the way of the story, so I can over look that.

samurai girl with three swords
samurai and sword

Touken Ranbu: Hanamaru as an anime is definitely an interesting idea. The anime is about the spirits of legendary Japanese swords that are summoned by “the Sage” to protect historic events from the time traveling “History reformers” that want to alter history. I’m not exactly an expert on historical weapons, so the names of the swords don’t really have any meaning to me, but the personalities of the swords are already starting to show. Hopefully in future episodes we will learn more about the background of each individual sword and learn more about their personalities. A couple times during the first episode, the swords mention that they see their former samurai owners as their parents or teachers. I think this is an great way to explain the sword/warrior relationship. I’m definitely looking forward to episode two. Hopefully I won’t have to do too much research to understand the series.

Tokyo ESP, honestly after watching just one episode, I’m having a little trouble understanding what this anime is about. It looks like there are these Espers that are separatists and want their own psychic country? And they’ve become terrorists and are blowing up Tokyo. And then there are these other Espers that want to defend regular people from the first group of Espers. And Espers are call Espers, but it’s more like they have a variety of super powers regardless of if they are good Espers or bad Espers. And that’s all I’ve got. Bad guys are doing bad things, good guys are trying to defend regular guys from the bad guys. And there’s super powers! This might turn out to be a really good anime, or not.

vampire gentleman in cape and suit leaping from the darkness
Vampire!

The Case study of Vanitas, I’ve already read the first manga of the series and the anime is exactly what I was expecting. It’s fast paced, witty, funny, and fantastical. If you like Bungo stray dogs, Pretty boy detective club, or Trigun you will probably like this. The story begins with Noe, a country bumpkin heading to Paris on an extravagant airship. On his trip he meets Miss Amelia, who seems to be quite sick and needs to see her doctor. Miss Amelia’s condition continues to worsen until she sprouts thorn tentacles and tries to eat Noe. That’s what happens when vampires get sick. That’s when a lunatic attacks! That lunatic is Vanitas, a doctor that wants to cure sick vampires. Though at first it looks like Vanitas is there to kill Miss Amelia and Noe, he’s actually there to help. The witty banter between Noe and Vanitas, mixed with almost slapstick humor, is pure gold. I love it!

The last series (BEM) I also really like. The story centers around a police officer that recently got demoted to the slums because she was rude to one of her superiors, and three demons that are trying to become humans by fighting crime. Yeah, the plot is kind of weird, but I really like the style of the anime. It has a very urban, quasi New York City feel to it, kind of like the Blood Battlefront Blockade anime. I also like the police officer character, she’s definitely a no compromise, always do the right thing no matter what, even if it kills her, type character that I usually like rooting for. The only thing I have to complain about is the animation for the bad guy/monsters. It’s not great. Hopefully it will get better in future episodes.

main character from Blood battlefront Blockade with glowing blue eye
Blood Battlefront Blockade

So have you tried any new anime recently? What was it? Did you like it? Hate it? Leave a comment below!

I’m currently watching:

  • Tsukimichi: Moonlit fantasy
  • My hero academia
  • Peach Boy Riverside
  • Welcome to demon school, Iruma-kun
  • Tokyo Revengers
  • My next life as a villainess 2
  • A lull in the sea
  • Snow white with the red hair
  • Bungo and alchemist
  • Touken Ranbu
  • Tokyo ESP
  • The melancholy of Haruhi Suzumia
  • Tokyo Majin
  • The case study of Vanitas
  • BEM