Anime Power Rankings: Spring 2014 Week 3
|Rank||Anime (First Place Votes)||Studio||Episode||Change|
|1||Mushishi Zoku Shou (8)||Artland||3||—|
|1||Ping Pong: The Animation (6)||Tatsunoko Productions||2||2|
|3||Isshuukan Friends (2)||Brains Base||2||1|
|4||No Game No Life (4)||Madhouse||2||2|
|5||Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders (2)||David Production||3||4|
On the Cusp: Mekaku City Actors (1), Haikyuu! (0), Gochuumon wa Usaki Desuka? (2), Love Live: School Idol Project Season 2 (1), Kanojo ga Flag o Oraetara (2)
Oh how the mighty have fallen. Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, which was sitting comfortably at #1 the past two weeks, has fallen 4 spots to fifth place on APR. This seems a bit odd to me as I thought this week’s episode was actually rather good. Sure it was less action packed than last week’s episode, but I don’t see how that would cause it to almost, and I mean ALMOST, drop out of the top 5. Or maybe most of you were upset by the ED that finally made it’s appearance. While it’s not the classic rock ballad that I was hoping it would be, it’s not a bad choice. Although I’m curious as to how relevant that ED will be later down the road. I can’t imagine they are going to spend the rest of the series in Egypt (this coming from the person that has no prior Jojo’s experience other than the Jojo’s 2012 so I have no idea what to expect).
What I’m happy to see is that the two best shows thus far, in my opinion, share the number 1 spot on APR this week. While Mushishi was being regular ol’ Mushishi, Ping Pong gave us a really solid episode that tapped into Smile’s mind a bit and showed us the softer side from Mr. Koizumi. I am honestly OK with Butterfly Joe fawning over Smile. He needs to do it all the time. It’s the only way that Smile is going to become a better ping pong player. A little tough love from an old man never hurt anyone, right?
No Game No Life makes it’s first appearance in the APR top 5. I was really interested in this show at the start of the season and I’m glad to see that everyone out there is enjoying it as much as I am. The first episode gave us a brief introduction into this fantasy world run by games and the rules for this fantasy world that our two main characters are thrown into. Episode 2 gave us a close look into the races of this world and their status among each other. It also has opened up what could be the first big game “showdown” of the series between Sora and little Miss Cheater Cheater Pumpkin Eater who looted Stephanie of everything she had. Things could get very interesting very soon in No Game No Life.
This week both Gaworare and No Game No Life decided to remove all restraints and let their characters go crazy. One brought in the big guns with a bunch of talented actresses – Kana Asumi, Aki Toyosaki, Yukari Tamura, Kana Hanazawa – while in the other Yoko Hikasa probably gave the best acting performance of her career. The approaches of both series are still somewhat different. For Gaworare, the characters are somewhat inherently insane charicatures by design – a hyperactive snowflake, the overly affectionate older sister, the wise elder loli, the extremely feminine boy. No Game No Life however lays out straightforward characters, but lets them bounce off the walls. It would be remiss to ignore the comic excellence of both of those episodes.
Justin (Lost My Thesis)
Isshuukan Friends is an interesting show in the way it combines the cast of genuinely kind and thoughtful characters that might be found in a typical healing-type anime and puts a more tragic spin on things. Isshuukan could have been a satisfying if not spectacular slice of life anime with a likeable cast of characters but the addition of Fujimiya’s memory issues makes the anime carry significant additional weight. Hase and Fujimiya’s interactions are so pure-hearted and good-natured that it’s hard to not get invested in their relationship. It’s thanks to that emotional investment that the more tragic moments cut as deeply as they do. Isshuukan friends doesn’t come at you as hard as some of the other anime designed to tug at your heart strings but that lack of overt emotional force does very little to reduce its potency which makes it a very special show.
Kelloggs (Pedantic Perspective)
Ping Pong hit it out of the park this week, blending in fantastic visuals with some great execution of character development. Smile’s transformation into his robotic counterpart – silent, aggressive and dominating – was one of the most powerful scenes of this week in anime, and the last half of the episode left me holding my breath, waiting for more. It’s hard to say if Ping Pong will live up to Yuasa’s other works like Kaiba and Tatami right now, but it’s definitely set on a path of greatness. Also surprisingly great in terms of thematic content and visuals was Mekaku City Actors, which, in the first episode, had me a bit bored, but turned into something strong and cohesive this week regarding identity, the personal consequences of fame, and “style over substance” – things which may also tie into Shinbo’s style. Overall, a great week for anime!
illegenes (Shibireru Darou?)
Thank you to everyone who voted this week in Anime Power Rankings. And for those of you who were busy at Sakuracon this weekend, I hope you had a fun time and have safe travels back home.