Amazing Stories

Fall 2018 SF Anime Preview

It’s that time again. Due to shows getting shorter and shorter, there are more than ever rolling our way this season. As always, click on the titles to get to the official sites and check out the art and promo videos.


As Miss Beelzebub Likes

The premise: A young man lands his dream job working for a powerful demon lord, only to discover that she’s totally into cute and fluffy things.

Derivative factor: Manga adaptation

The buzz: The source material is a cute comedy which may hold up fairly well in the adaptation.
Premiere: October 10

Bakumatsu

The premise: A woman is transported by a mysterious pocket watch into an alternate Bakumatsu period (the mid-1800s).

Derivative factor: Video game adaptation

The buzz: Although the game is a romance, this adaptation will theoretically be action-oriented.
Premiere: October 4

A Certain Magical Index III

The premise: A nun on the run with forbidden knowledge is protected by a teenage boy with the power to cancel out any other power.

Derivative factor: Continuation of light novel adaptation

The buzz: The first season of A Certain Magical Index was the beginning of the light novel adaptation craze, and that was partly because it wasn’t terrible. So there may be some hope here.

Premiere: October 5

Conception

The premise: The day after graduating from high school, a young man is whisked off to a fantasy world where he is expected to father children with magic to defeat the monsters attacking it.

Derivative factor: Video game adaptation

The buzz: If you can past the premise, it actually sounds like this could be… okay, no, you probably won’t.

Premiere: October 9

Devidol

The premise: Three demons living as teenage girls stumble their way toward becoming pop idols.

Derivative factor: Pachinko game adaptation

The buzz: None.

Premiere: October 4

Double Decker! Doug & Kirill

The premise: A veteran detective and a rookie with unrevealed powers are paired up to fight crime in an urban city-state.

Derivative factor: Spinoff

The buzz: Billed as a project reuniting the team behind the still-popular 2011 show Tiger & Bunny, the only real question is, how did this take seven years? Crunchyroll started streaming the premiere a month early, and reactions so far is that it has recaptured the magic.

Premiere: September 30

Gaikotsu Shotenin Honda-san (Mr. Honda, the Skeleton at the Antiquarian Bookstore)

The premise: A skeleton works at a bookstore.

Derivative factor: Manga adaptation

The buzz: It’s certainly an original premise for a comedy, and well-timed for the Halloween season.
Premiere: October 7

The Girl in Twilight

The premise: A high school club decides to try out an occult ritual and winds up summoning an alternate-universe equivalent of one of them.

Derivative factor: Original

The buzz: An intriguing premise, with a mixed bag on the production side. This could be excellent, terrible, or anywhere in between.

Premiere: October 1

Goblin Slayer

The premise: A young priestess and her first party in an RPG-like world are saved by a mysterious hero who is on a mission to exterminate goblins.

Derivative factor: Light novel adapatation

The buzz: People familiar with the source material report that this one stands out from the crowd of generic stories about RPG-like adventures by turning dark and brutal almost immediately. But not, sadly, that it is any better than the crowd of generic stories.

Premiere: October 6

Hora, Mimi ga Mieteru yo! (Hey, Your Ears Are Showing!)

The premise: A lonely manga artist’s heart melts after he gets a cute and troublesome cat boy as a roommate.

Derivative factor: Webcomic adaptation

The buzz: This looks cute and soft and maybe like it won’t suck as badly as most Japanese-Chinese co-productions.

Premiere: October 3

Irozuku Sekai no Ashita kara. (‘Til Tomorrow in a World of Changing Colors.)

The premise: A mage in the future sends her emotionless granddaughter to the present day to learn about life.

Derivative factor: Original

The buzz: Are you ready for a gorgeous melodrama? Because this looks like a gorgeous melodrama from a studio known far and wide for gorgeous melodrama.

Premiere: October 5

Jingai-san no Yome (The Inhuman Bride)

The premise: A high school student marries a mysterious fluffy lifeform.

Derivative factor: Manga adaptation

The buzz: Nobody’s even talking about shows with short episodes because this season is so crowded.

Premiere: October 2

Karakuri Circus (Mechanical Circus)

The premise: The young heir to a huge fortune is protected by two people with peculiar abilities.

Derivative factor: Manga adaptation

The buzz: The source manga shares an author with the manga behind the reasonably good show Ushio & Tora, so this should be decent at least.

Premiere: October 11

Kishuku Gakkō no Juliet (Boarding School Juliet)

The premise: Students from rival nations fall in love at a boarding school and desperately try to keep their romance a secret.

Derivative factor: Manga adaptation

The buzz: Not your typical romantic comedy, as the manga is said to involve a lot of action.

Premiere: October 5

Merc Storia: Mukiryoku no Shōnen to Bin no Naka no Shōjo (Merc Storia: The Slacker Boy and the Girl in a Jar)

The premise: An apprentice healer sets out to recover the memories of his friend who is trapped in a jar.

Derivative factor: Video game adaptation

The buzz: Rather than a simple play-through of the game, the show will reportedly be more about fleshing out the fantasy world it takes place in. Video game adaptations are still mostly terrible, though, so don’t get your hopes up too high.

Premiere: October 11

Ms. vampire who lives in my neighborhood.

The premise: An ordinary girl is rescued by a vampire girl and tries to find out more about her.

Derivative factor: Comic strip adaptation

The buzz: Be prepared for unbelievable amounts of cute and very old jokes.

Premiere: October 5

Operation Han-Gyaku-Sei Million Arthur

The premise: Stuff happens in a fantasy world populated by a bazillion alternate-world versions of King Arthur.

Derivative factor: Video game adaptation

The buzz: No trailers and no story info available yet, so… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Premiere: October 25

Radiant

The premise: A boy who wants to be a wizard travels with a group of witches to a place said to create monsters that fall from the sky.

Derivative factor: Adaptation of French comic

The buzz: Normally it would be neat to see Japan looking to Western sources for material, but in this case the comic is just a remix of tedious old manga tropes.
Premiere: October 6

Release the Spyce

The premise: High school girls moonlight as super-spies with powers that are unlocked with bidis.

Derivative factor: Original

The buzz: Looks really dumb, but also really cool.
Premiere: October 6

RErideD

The premise: An autonomous vehicle engineer discovers a critical flaw but is trapped in hiberation for a decade, waking up to a world in which the flawed program has robots running wild, but there is also a way to travel back in time.

Derivative factor: Original

The buzz: This is being made by a new studio with probably not a lot of budget behind it, so don’t expect much from the visuals, but the creative forces behind it do love science fiction.

Premiere: October 3

Seishun Buta Yarō wa Bunny Girl-senpai no Yume wo Minai (The Disgusting Pig of an Adolescent Isn’t Dreaming That His Senior Is a Bunny Girl)

The premise: A high school boy starts to see an upperclassman in a bunny outfit, when she seems completely normal to everyone else.

Derivative factor: Light novel adaptation

The buzz: There’s not much love out there for the source material, so this is probably one of those shows designed to make a quick, reliable buck off the people who do like it and not bother with anyone else.

Premiere: October 3

Sora to Umi no Aida (Between the Sky and the Sea)

The premise: Young women train to become aquaculturists in space.

Derivative factor: Video game adaptation

The buzz: While the idea of space fishermen sounds interesting, it looks like the show will focus mainly on standard stuff about a bunch of common character types learning to be a team of friends.

Premiere: October 3

SSSS.Gridman

The premise: A high school student loses his memories, gains a computerized mentor, and fights giant monsters in a giant robot.

Derivative factor: Reimagining of live-action series

The buzz: Hard to say, since it explicitly isn’t remaking the old series, and the primary studio just finished making a giant-robots-vs-monsters show that was a huge mess.
Premiere: October 6

That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime

The premise: A 37-year-old salaryman wakes up in a faux-medieval fantasy world, in the body of the weakest creature in the world but with the power to steal others’ skills.

Derivative factor: Light novel adaptation

The buzz: Well, yup, it’s another one of those resurrected-in-an-RPG-world stories. At least it’s got an interesting-sounding twist and probably won’t be as cringey as the ones last season?

Premiere: October 1

Zombieland Saga

The premise: Seven aspiring pop idols survive the zombie apocalypse.

Derivative factor: Original

The buzz: Mashing up one of the most overdone trends in anime with zombies is not something to get the anime world excited, except that (1) we all said that before School-Live! premiered and it turned out to be awesome, and (2) the highest-profile backer of this show has a spectacular record lately.

Premiere: October 4


Meanwhile, in the continuing adaptation world:


Phew! My top pick has been Double Decker for some time, and having just peeked at the early premiere, I’m already feeling vindicated. I’m intrigued by Karakuri Circus and The Girl in Twilight, and with a field this big you know there’s going to be at least one pleasant surprise in it. What are you looking forward to?

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