Summer 2015 SF Anime Preview

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It’s nearly that time again, when the anime industry rolls up a bunch of new shows and sends them out into the unforgiving world. Here’s a quick rundown, and as always, click through on the titles to check out the official sites!


Shirayuki Akagami no Shirayuki-hime (Shirayuki the Red-Haired Princess)

The premise: A beautiful young medicine woman is proposed to by a prince, but flees the fairytale ending and winds up as the court doctor in a neighboring country.

Derivative factor: Manga adaptation

The buzz: Fans of the manga are disappointed that the character designs have been genericized, but the show does have some solid resources behind it.

Premiere: July 6

Chaos-Dragon Chaos Dragon: Sekiryū Seneki (Chaos Dragon: The Red Dragon Campaign)

The premise: In the year 3015, the island country of Japan Nil Kamui is conquered by its longtime  enemy China Kōran, and becomes the new focus of Kōran’s cold war with its rival superpower, the United States Donatia.

Derivative factor: Transcript of gaming session between five authors

The buzz: This has pedigree up the wazoo with the involvement of big names like Gen Urobuchi (Puella Magi Madoka Magica), Ryōgo Narita (Baccano!, Durarara!), and Makoto Sanda (Record of Lodoss War), but this may be a case of too many cooks. Expectations are high for an absolute trainwreck.

Premiere: July 2

Charlotte Charlotte

The premise: A teenager with psychic powers is able to keep them hidden until he meets a psychic girl, which leads to the existence of psychic powers being exposed.

Derivative factor: Original

The buzz: Generic premise is terribly generic, but with the writer from hits like Clannad and Air involved, this will probably be popular no matter what.

Premiere: July 4

Classroom-Crisis Classroom☆Crisis

The premise: A romantic comedy about students at a technical high school trying to balance academics with part-time jobs. On Mars.

Derivative factor: Original

The buzz: Slice-of-life anime cliches… in… spaaaaaace!

Premiere: July 3

 
 
 

Super Dragon Ball Super

The premise: Fighting characters find excuses to get into even more fighting.

Derivative factor: Umpteenth entry in massive multimedia franchise

The buzz: The original Dragon Ball was an iconic series that was the gateway into anime for many millenial fans. But even its English-language airings were almost 15 years ago, and with all the movies and other sequels since, the series has reached creative exhaustion. This may not be kind to many childhood memories.

Premiere: July 5

 

Gakkou-Gurashi Gakkō Gurashi! (School Life!)

The premise: Four girls decide to have a sleepover at their school, and wind up being the only survivors of a zombie attack.

Derivative factor: Manga adaptation

The buzz: A zombie apocalypse could be just the thing to shake up the moribund “cute girls doing cute things” subgenre. Or, some moe could be just the thing to shake up the moribund zombie apocalypse subgenre.

Premiere: July 9

 

Insight Gatchaman Crowds insight

The premise: A superhero team tasked with protecting Earth deals with the fallout from a disruptive technological advance.

Derivative factor: Sequel

The buzz: How much one is looking forward to this depends on how much one feels about the first Gatchaman Crowds, which was a love-it-or-hate-it kind of show.

Premiere: July 4

 

 

Gate Gate: Jieitai Kanochi nite, Kaku Tatakaeri (Gate: How the Self-Defense Force Fought There)

The premise: When magic portal to a fantasy universe opens up in Tokyo, the Japanese Self-Defence Forces send an exploratory team through and find themselves hunting a dragon.

Derivative factor: Light novel adaptation

The buzz: Looks like a great big wad of otaku bait that will probably sell a gazillion Blu-Ray collections and other merchandise no matter how much the story sucks.

Premiere: July 3

God-Eater God Eater

The premise: Nearly-unkillable mysterious organisms which threaten to devour all life on Earth are battled by people with the few weapons that can kill them.

Derivative factor: Game adaptation

The buzz: Just being a video game adaptation has already nearly doomed it to being terrible, even though the studio producing this has a lot of fans that will watch anything it makes in the hope that it at least will look good.

Premiere: July 5

Dandelion Jōkamachi no Dandelion (Dandelions of the Citadel)

The premise: Nine siblings with superpowers are monitored daily for a reality show, whose viewers will get to choose their next monarch from among them.

Derivative factor: Comic strip adaptation

The buzz: Sounds terrible on the face of it, and yet there is a certain something about the previews that suggests it might be a sleeper hit.

Premiere: July 2

Santa Kurayami Santa (Dark Santa)

The premise: A minor demon maintains the boundary between the human and supernatural worlds in 1960s Kyushu.

Derivative factor: Original

The buzz: None.

Premiere: July 4

 

 

 

 

 
Wizard Kūsen Madōshi Kōhosei no Kyōkan (Wizard Air Cadet Instructor)

The premise: In a fantasy world where humans battle giant insects for control of the skies, a former ace takes charge of a squad of quirky losers.

Derivative factor: Light novel adaptation

The buzz: There is literally no hope of anything good coming out of this.

Premiere: July 8

Monster-Secret My Monster Secret

The premise: A high-schooler who can’t keep a secret discovers that his crush is a vampire.

Derivative factor: Manga adaptation

The buzz: Aside from the derpiest promo art ever, this looks like it has nothing new to offer on either the harem comedy or the vampire front.

Premiere: July 5

 

Overlord Overlord

The premise: One player refuses to log out when his favorite virtual-reality MMORPG ends, and finds himself sucked into a game world where the NPCs start to develop into real people.

Derivative factor: Original

The buzz: “Trapped in an RPG” is another setting that desperately needs to be sent into retirement for a while.

Premiere: July 7

 

Ranpo-Kitan Rampo Kitan: Game of Laplace (Rampo’s Stories: Game of Laplace)

The premise: When a series of murders happens at a middle school, students join forces with a genius detective to solve them. The title is a shout-out to Rampo Edogawa, a famous mystery writer of the early 20th century.

Derivative factor: Original

The buzz: A horror-oriented homage to Japan’s answer to Sherlock Holmes sounds intriguing, even with minimal information about the story. Definitely one to check out.

Premiere: July 3

Rokka Rokka: Braves of the Six Flowers

The premise: Six heroes are summoned to save the world from demons, but seven appear.

Derivative factor: Light novel adaptation

The buzz: This sounds better than the typical light novel story, but that’s not exactly saying much.

Premiere: July 4

 

Ushio-to-Tora Ushio & Tora

The premise: A middle-schooler is forced to release a demon trapped for 500 years in order to help defeat monsters that threaten his friends and family.

Derivative factor: Manga adaptation

The buzz: At the very least, this should be a well-executed shonen fighting show. It might be epic.

Premiere: July 3


My top pick has to be Gatchaman Crowds insight, after I loved Gatchaman Crowds so much I thought it was one of the top shows of 2013. Kurayami Santa and Rampo Kitan are also pinging strongly on my radar. What are you looking forward to most?

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