Another season is just about over and it is time yet again to look ahead to what is coming. It always amazes me how quickly time flies. Really doesn’t feel that long ago that the Summer Season got started, but we have to now look and see what Fall is going to bring. As always this is just a personal list of the shows I’m looking forward to in Fall. That list is definitely going to vary from other people and certainly I can’t tell which shows will surprise me and which ones will disappoint. However, it is a good thing to look ahead and ponder what kind of season we have coming.

Summer was a pretty enjoyable season for me. A lot of my top shows ended up being what I hoped. Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya 3rei!! did not let me down. D.Gray-man HALLOW….absolutely was everything I feared it might be. Re:Zero continued its strong showing, although the second half had more story choices that I honestly didn’t enjoy. It wasn’t as enjoyable a show as the first half, although the quality as a whole remained extremely high. I do think this summer season was a bit more of a standard summer in terms of there not being a ton of amazing new shows. And many of those shows were either really short or instantly available. ReLIFE is so easy to forget as being a summer anime because it aired all at once, but it was really good. On the other hand fall is looking pretty promising and could have a large variety of series to enjoy.

Also as per the norm, most of the information for this season is coming from sites like Live Chart, MAL (My Anime List), and AniChart. Very useful sites for finding out what is coming in the next season and just finding PVs and summaries to read through.

Series of High Interest

Best to start at the top with the shows I’m most looking forward to this season:

Brave Witches

  • Air Date: 5 Oct 2016
  • Studio: Silver Link
  • Episodes: TBD
  • Blogging? No

In September 1944, allied forces led by the 501st Joint Fighter Wing "Strike Witches" successfully eliminate the Neuroi threat from the skies of the Republic of Gallia... Taking advantage of this victory, allied forces begin a full-fledged push toward central and eastern Europe. From a base in Petersburg in the Empire of Orussia, the 502nd Joint Fighter Wing "Brave Witches," upon whom mankind has placed its hopes, flies with courage in the cold skies of eastern Europe.

This is a series that had my attention upon being announced. I did enjoy the first two Strike Witches series. They had some strong and weak moments, but as a whole were shows I enjoyed following. What I really like is that for this series they are willing to leave that group behind. Moving the focus to a different squad of Witches that will be doing their own thing.

There shouldn’t be any lack of things to enjoy in this new series. The aerial combat against the neuroi should be good as usual, the new cast seems pretty nice, and I expect a really enjoyable show. This franchise is pretty consistent, but if they had only stuck with the single team it might have gotten a bit stale. I am probably not going to have the time with other shows to blog this one, but it is one of the series I’m really looking forward to.

Hibike! Euphonium 2

  • Air Date: 5 Oct 2016
  • Studio: KyoAni
  • Episodes: 13
  • Blogging? Maybe

After swearing off music due to an incident at the middle school regional brass band competition, euphonist Kumiko Oumae enters high school hoping for a fresh start. As fate would have it, she ends up being surrounded by people with an interest in the high school brass band. Kumiko finds the motivation she needs to make music once more with the help of her bandmates...However, in the band itself, chaos reigns supreme.

It would be a bit strange if I wasn’t looking forward to this series. The first season was my top anime of 2015! Yeah, the sequel has been on my radar. This is a series that I think gives school bands the most respect of any anime to this point. It really shows the size and the impression a full school band can give off. It also was one of the best dramas (school or otherwise) of that year. The character dynamics and troubles within this band was pretty intense at times. It wasn’t troubles that seemed completely unbelievable, but the show really brought a feeling of intensity to them.

The character side of it was really nice as well and tied right into the band troubles. Kumiko was a lead that really had a great mix of strengths and flaws. How she interacted with her bandmates and grew as a person was nice to see. Of course there is plenty of room to continue that and in part that is what has me really excited about this upcoming season. A school band drama that honestly does a great job with respecting the music side of it. Not just characters randomly “playing” instruments, but really looking and feeling like they are the ones performing.

Natsume Yuujinchou Go

  • Air Date: 4 Oct 2016
  • Studio: Studio Shuka
  • Episodes: TBD
  • Blogging? Yes

Fifth season of Natsume's Book of Friends. While most fifteen-year-old boys, in one way or another, harbor secrets that are related to girls, Takashi Natsume has a peculiar and terrifying secret involving youkai: for as long as he can remember, he has been constantly chased by these spirits. Natsume soon discovers that his deceased grandmother Reiko had passed on to him the Yuujinchou, or "Book of Friends," which contains the names of the spirits whom she brought under her control.

Its Natsume….that almost is all one has to say. At this point you are either a fan of the series or you haven’t kept up with it. This is the fifth season of Natsume Yuujinchou. Of course the last season came out in 2012 so in all honesty I wasn’t sure if we were ever going to get another season. It was a great bit of news when the sequel was announced.

Natsume is all about the slow development and drama. I’ve honestly enjoyed seeing Natsume grow from this person who didn’t know how not to lie to people about what he was seeing and running away from the supernatural into someone who wants to help both human and youkai whenever he can. This isn’t a supernatural show you watch for the action, but for the characters. There is some action here and there, but it is more about telling stories.

I hope this season we continue to get more insights about Natsume’s grandmother Reiko. I’m also hoping that we can just see Natsume continue to mature as a person and find some happiness with the friends he is finding along the way.

Kidou Senshi Gundam: Tekketsu no Orphans 2

  • Air Date: 2 Oct 2016
  • Studio: Sunrise
  • Episodes: 25
  • Blogging? No

Second season of Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans. Horrified by the appalling living conditions that Mars' inhabitants have to bear, Kudelia Aina Bernstein, a young aristocrat from the Chryse Autonomous Region, gets involved in the Red Planet's independence movement. She hires the services of a local company, Chryse Guard Security (CGS), to escort her on the journey to Earth to negotiate economic conditions with the earthly bloc that controls the region.

It is just nice to have a good Gundam series again. I wouldn’t say that this is going to be one of my favorites, but I at least enjoy watching it. My preference would be for them to have some beam weapons and that is one of the downsides for me in this show. But, I can respect that they want to focus on heavier hitting physical melee weapons and guns. It does add a weight to the show which I’m sure is entirely intentional when “iron” is part of the title for this Gundam series.

The first season was successful in introducing us to this group of kids who have been raised to be what amounts to mercenaries. Eventually getting rid of their former employers and starting out on their own. The season had a lot of focus in terms of them establishing themselves as a more respected company and also simply trying to perform their first big job. Escorting Kudelia to Earth was a monumental task and one where they suffered losses and painful struggles along the way. I’m quite curious to see how this cast continues to evolve as they are somewhat being used as pawns in a much bigger game.

If nothing else this season should be fun to watch and I’ll be curious to see how well it can conclude.

Series of Moderate Interest

Now here are some shows I’m looking forward to, but there are some questions:

12-Sai. Chiccha na Mune no Tokimeki 2

  • Air Date: 3 Oct 2016
  • Studio: OLM
  • Episodes: TBD
  • Blogging? No

The story follows Hanabi, a sixth-grade girl who is neither an adult nor a child. She deals with issues such as accidentally witnessing her homeroom teacher kissing, and worrying about experiencing physiological changes before her friends. This is the depiction of a 12-year-old girl's innocent worries and first love.

I think the first season of this series was actually quite enjoyable. It very much is what you would expect from the summary. This series just is very cute and focuses on the very young and first romances of the two main “pairs” of characters. Both couples are distinct from each other which allows it to have differing experiences, but also shared ones that unfold slightly differently due to personalities.

This isn’t a show that has much complexity in place for me. I’m simply looking forward to seeing how the pairs continue to develop over the course of a second season. Season 1 allowed these couples to quickly get together and start out. Now we can see what future challenges they will face and how that changes them. If nothing else it will be pretty cute and innocent.

Digimon Universe: App Monsters

  • Air Date: 30 Sep 2016
  • Studio: Toei Animation
  • Episodes: TBD
  • Blogging? No

Everyone in the world uses smartphone apps. But inside them lurks unknown creatures called "Appli Monsters," or "Appmon." The Appmon are AI lifeforms with the ability to think and act, and exist in the boundary between the human world and digital space. In the vast sea of the internet, the "last boss AI" Leviathan takes control of the Appmon with a virus and begins hacking every system, thus starting to control the human world from the world of the net.

I’m definitely excited for more Digimon. Although you never know if a new season will be more serious or utterly silly. The last season Xros Wars had pros and cons to it. The first few arcs were pretty good and I liked the serious tone it had at times. The latter part of the show when it went the whole “dimension hunters” route just utterly lost me.

I hope that this series will be more of the good kind of Digimon instead of the utterly unwatchable kind. From the materials we’ve seen so far…I don’t know. Will have to wait and see how this series turns out. I sure hope it turns out well since while the Digimon Adventure Tri movies are good…we do need more than simply those.

Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku

  • Air Date: 1 Oct 2016
  • Studio: Lerche
  • Episodes: TBD
  • Blogging? Maybe

In a world where a social game called The Magical Girl Raising Project allows one in tens of thousands of people to be a "magical girl" — possessing extraordinary physical capabilities and looks, as well as special magical powers that set them apart from the rest of the human race. But one day, in a district containing 16 magical girls, the administration announces that it must halve the number of magical girls to solve the problem of magical energy.

If nothing else the premise of this show caught my attention from when I first heard about it. This strange situation where girls are being made or being allowed to become magical girls…before a quota gets put into place. Now they are being forced into what sounds like dangerous competitions if not outright fights to the death to determine who gets to stay a magical girl…and possibly alive.

This certainly feels like a show that would pop up in the wake of Madoka. Not that is a new show anymore, but this kind of serious mahou shoujo does give the impression that it took inspiration from that. I hope it turns out well. Lerche is handling this show and this very much seems like the kind of series that would fit with them.

Soushin Shoujo Matoi

  • Air Date: 4 Oct 2016
  • Studio: White Fox
  • Episodes: TBD
  • Blogging? Maybe

It is 2016. Matoi Sumeragi, a second-year junior high school student, works part-time as a shrine maiden at Tenman Shrine in the city of Kamaya. Ever since being separated from her mother in early childhood, Matoi has been entrusted to her grandparents on her father's side, but three months ago, she finally began to live with her father Shingo. In those circumstances, she only wishes for a peaceful, normal life.

If there is one reason this show is on my radar….it’s because White Fox is on it. Now they can pick up and do not so good stuff…but they can also do Re:Zero. That’s a good reason to give this series some attention. If nothing else this has a pretty decent setup for some good supernatural fighting action. Girl gains supernatural powers and fights evil spirits? If nothing else that can work for an enjoyable series and if they go deeper than that then I’m all for it. With it being an original series who knows how the story might turn out beyond the simple premise.

Series of Mild Interest

Now the shows that are on my radar, but I’m just not sure about going in:

ViVid Strike!

  • Air Date: 1 Oct 2016
  • Studio: Seven Arcs Pictures
  • Episodes: TBD
  • Blogging? Maybe

Thou shalt not be afraid I am with you.

This is a show I’ve got more of a curiosity towards than anything. This being the first series in the Nanoha-universe…that is clearly distancing itself from Nanoha as a character. I already talked about the announcement of this series and there hasn’t been much beyond a simple PV to work from. They are clearly going with a new main protagonist, but also having Vivio Takamachi, Einhart Stratos and their Vivid friends be supporting characters. I have no idea if this is going to be good or an utter mess.

They clearly weren’t happy with the sales of Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha ViVid. So this is a kind of fresh start in the same universe. I’m quite curious how they handle Nanoha’s status as likely never going to appear outside of photographs. Let’s hope this works out. The Nanoha franchise has been a good one and deserves to keep going in anime form.

WWW.WORKING!!

  • Air Date: 1 Oct 2016
  • Studio: A-1 Pictures
  • Episodes: 13
  • Blogging? No

Daisuke Higashida is a serious first-year student at Higashizaka High School. He lives a peaceful everyday life even though he is not satisfied with the family who doesn't laugh at all and makes him tired. However, his father's company goes bankrupt one day, and he can no longer afford allowances, cellphone bills, and commuter tickets. When his father orders him to take up a part-time job, Daisuke decides to work at a nearby family restaurant in order to avoid traveling 15 kilometers to school

This is an interesting spinoff situation for Working. With that story clearly concluded they’ve decided to dive into a new series with a completely new cast. I hope this works out alright. Whether they can capture the magic of the original series or not I don’t know. I do think that it was a smart move to go ahead and focus on an entirely new family restaurant. That way they don’t have to nod and acknowledge the original series and can simply focus on telling their own story (while getting people to watch based on the original series).

While the title sounds like a weird website…I think this could turn out pretty well. The PVs got some laughs out of me and I think they could make this a fun show.

SHOW BY ROCK!! 2

  • Air Date: 2 Oct 2016
  • Studio: Bones
  • Episodes: 12
  • Blogging? No

Season 2 of Show By Rock!! Metropolis of music, MIDICITY. A kitty girl wearing gothic lolita clothing named Cyan is scouted by Maple Arisugawa, the president of a music agency. From there, she meets Chuchu (a pun off of the sound that rabbits make) the honor student rabbit girl, a net geek dog girl named Retoree (from "Retriever"), and an alien sheep (?) girl named Moa. Together, they form the band named "Plasmagica," and aim for the top of the world.

Honestly I never imagined that Show by Rock would turn into an enjoyable show, much less get a sequel. The premise seemed pretty standard and the odd animation choices for the band sequences just seemed weird. But….it worked. It was a pretty fun show that followed Cyan as she joined a band, gained friends, gained confidence, and eventually conquered evil. The show ended so concretely that I never imagined we’d see a sequel at all.

Instead here we are with a Season 2 that from the PV….looks darker. That may not be a bad idea. The original series did have some dark moments and I think getting more serious would give them more areas to explore. Not to mention I’m always curious when a series like this ends up way more popular than the creators ever imagined it would be. They could go in any number of directions and I’ll be keeping an eye on it to see where it goes.

Shuumatsu no Izetta

  • Air Date: 1 Oct 2016
  • Studio: Ajia-dou
  • Episodes: 12
  • Blogging? No

In 1939, the imperialist nation of Germania launched a sudden invasion of its neighboring countries. This conflagration engulfed all of Europe in one fell swoop, and the era was dragged into the maelstrom of war...The story centers on Izetta a descendant of a clan of witches...and Fine the sole daughter in line to succeed Rudolph III, the ruler of the Principality of Elystadt. From a young age she has been adored for her wisdom and kind heart by not only her retainers, but by all the citizens.

The setting for this show seems interesting considering it is a show with witches and magic. An anime focused in the 1940s with magic just seems interesting. This isn’t necessarily the first anime that has combined European war and magic “Junketsu no Maria” comes to mind, but that was set more in the medieval period and this is more modern than that. It is a bit more focused on the friendship between the leading ladies, but that’s not a bad thing. I’m curious about Izetta since she is the last in her witch clan and how she’ll use that magic to help her friend Fine. A young monarch for an independent nation will be getting a major asset.

Will be something to see how the show balances that friendship with the fact that magic could be something that tips the balance and helps avoid Altstadt being overrun by enemies. The one thing that has me on the fence was that Izetta’s voice just didn’t sound fitting to me when watching the PV. Will have to see if I can get used to that or not.

Closing Thoughts

And that is the Fall Season in terms of the shows that have my attention. There are of course a lot of shows not mentioned here and in terms of minor notes I could talk about several other series. A few other shows that have my eye are: FLIP FLAPPERS, Long Riders!, Luger Code 1951, and Idol Memories.

It is hard to say how Fall is going to turn out, but I’m pretty optimistic. There is a good variety I think. We have some mecha shows, some mahout shoujo, some music series, slice of life, some historical types of shows, etc. I wouldn’t say we have the entire spectrum covered of course and there isn’t a lot of depth for some of the genres past one or two series.

The genre with by far the stranglehold on Fall is magical girl shows. You have: a kind of sci-fi magical girl show with Vivid Strike!, an almost Madoka kind of dark sounding magical girl show in Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku, the familiar in Brave Witches, and even shows like Soushin Shoujo Matoi and FLIP FLAPPERS. Whether that’s a good or bad thing will depend on your point of view.

We’re not going to be lacking on the OVA/Movie side of things either. We’ve already seen Digimon Adventure tri. 3: Kokuhaku. Was very much excited for another round from Digimon Adventure Tri. I’m somewhat curious to see the Strike the Blood OVA in November.

In terms of what I’m going to be covering, as always we’ll have to see how the first few episodes shape out. Although I have a strong feeling that Hibike! Euphonium 2 and Natsume Yuujinchou Go will end up being covered. No guarantees outside of Natsume until the shows air. Fall looks like a packed season which is probably a good thing with so many summer shows ending. Let’s hope it lives up to the promise I think this season will have.

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An older member at 25, yet a new addition to Anime Evo. Recently graduating University and in the difficult point between school and a true career. Anime being a salvation and blogging a good way to put all those hours of writing essays to some use. Enjoys talking about series, yet not taking on so many that the quality dips. A Canadian who enjoys his anime and hearing what others think about the series he enjoys watching.

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  • Andmeuths

    In the post-Madoka world, I suspect none of the magical girl shows airing this season is going to play the genre straight. Magical Girl Raising Project seems to be a survival game of sorts, with a protagonist whose naivete is one gigantic “break me” sign. Vivid Strike takes a different route, with a street-rat orphan getting into gang-fights in seedy places being made the protagonist in a Magitek world in a magical girl anime (was there ever a magical girl protagonist from such a deprived background?). Shoujo Matoi seems to involve fighting Japanese evil spirits in magical girl garb. Etc, etc…..

    • FlareKnight

      That may be the case.

      Although I’m not sure if Matoi will be a huge departure. I think the magical girl genre has branched out so far that honestly a variety of options can be still considered playing the genre straight. Plus if you want a magical girl show still playing it straight in the classic sense….Mahou Tsukai Pretty Cure! is still ongoing XD.

      I think the flexibility is pretty good. Matoi might be more standard since I don’t think what she will be fighting is all that different from the kinds of monsters magical girls have fought over the decades.