July Anime Preview — Part II

3 07 2009

Well, here it is! The last installment of the summer anime previews. They been both laborious and a pleasure to write, bringing both insights into what’s coming up in anime (and what’s destined for the clearance bin) and writing this has been an education for this anime viewer. 

This installment includes the new Spice and Wolf, maybe the most anticipated of the series listed, along with some clunkers and plenty of “could be cool, could be lame” stuff. For this installment, I’ve removed the excitement level and likelihood of stateside release, the former because many of the series I really wasn’t sure, and the latter because it occurred to me that it’s sort of a moot issue these days. Series become popular in the anime insider crowd long before they, if ever, see actual release in the U.S. The fact that there are was so much English information about these shows available (saving me the trouble/pitfalls of translating Japanese sites) is a testament to that. 

So, without further ado, please enjoy the last of the summer anime previews:

JG Princess LoverPrincess Lover

Chiba TV, 07/05, Sun. 24:30

Admittedly, the plot here sounds similar to To Love Ru: A parentless boy who is supposed to be successor to a powerful father figure gets involved with a large-chested, pink-haired bubbly princess. Sound familiar? Comparisons at this point aren’t entirely fair, of course, and the source material for this anime series comes from an adult adventure game, and the tone of the show seems to be light-hearted hentai comedy.

Website: Here!

Trailer: Here!

 

JG KanamemoKanamemo

TV Tokyo, 07/05, Sun., 25:30

Kanamemo, like the seires mentioned above, also involves a child who lost parents. In this case it’s middle school girl Kana Nakamichi, and to support herself, she gets a job at a newspaper delivery service filled with assertive bishoujo, making for a happy, fast-paced environment. The show is based on a four-panel manga, so it will be interesting to see how that is interpreted in anime form (a likely predecessor is Azumanga Daioh).

Website: Here!

Trailer: Here!

 

JG GeijutsukaGeijutsuka Art Design Class

Yomiuri TV, 07/06, Mon., 26:14

Speaking of moe titles, another July release revolves around a group of freshmen art students and their wacky hi-jinx in art club. Based on a manga that ran in Comic Cute! and later Manga Time Kirara Carat, the show should continue the manga’s light-hearted school adventures.

Website: Here! 

Trailer: Here! 

 

JG Sora no mani maniSora no Mani Mani

AT-X, 07/07, Tues., 10:30

Here’s a plot never seen in anime — a boy moves away from his hometown to return later, discovering a girl he had a friendship with (though there was some tragedy involved) and now the passage of time sets the stage for a different context for their relationship. Alas, sometimes formulas are formulas for a reason, and this one sets the stage for Saku Ooyagi, who returns to his hometown as a freshman in high school. An invitation to the local astronomy club by his old friend and club founder, Mihoshi (with whom he had an embarrassing incident), sets the stage for this slapstick comedy. At an astronomy club. 

Website: Here! 

Trailer: Here! 

 

JG Spice and Wolf IISpice and Wolf II

Kanagawa TV, 07/08, Wed., 25:15

It’s no exaggeration to say that this is one of the most anticipated releases — if not the most anticipated release — of this summer’s anime debuts. Spice and Wolf, started from a series of light novels, has lauched manga, anime, video games, web radio, and just about everything else one can market a Japanese brand with. The story follows story of Lawrence Croft, a medieval peddler, as he is joined by half-wolf, half-human pagan wolf deity Horo (think moe girl with pointy wolf ears and bushy tail). The series has received critical accolades for its unique style and fantasy mixed with economics — not to mention absolutely gorgeous visuals. Season two has been much anticipated and many will be watching its premier.

Website: Here! 

Trailer: Here! 

 

JG Tokyo MagnitudeTokyo Magnitude 8.0

Fuji TV, 07/09. Thurs., 24:45

Western audiences are likely too familiar with the disaster movie, but what about the disaster anime? Based on the theory that a magnitude 7.0 or higher Earthquake will likely occur in the next 30 years, Tokyo Magnitude 8.0 explores the what-if scenario. So sets the stage for Marai and Yukata, brother and sister, who are trapped such an Earthquake that brings down Tokyo Tower and changes the landscape of Tokyo in an instant.

Website: Here! 

Trailer: Here! 

 

JG Yoku Wakaru Gendai MahouYoku Wakaru Gendai Mahou

BS11, 07/11, Sat., 24:00

Based on a series of light novels, Gendai Mahou brings the world of sorcery to the modern age, with magic existing as computer programs. Extremely short bumbling magician wannabe Koyomi becomes the apprentice of graduate student and master sorcerer Misa.

Website: Here!

Trailer: Here! 

 

JG HetaliaHetalia: Axis Powers season II

Mobile Animeto, 07/24, Fri., 16:00

One has to admit that this is a pretty unique concept: A historical fiction taking place between World War I and II, with each character as the personification of a country. Unique and dangerous, as it would be difficult to avoid stereotypes and in fact many protests came from Korea, claiming their representation is insulting. The first season ultimately was only available on mobile phone and online streaming, and it looks like the same will be the case here.

Website: Here! 

 

JG Jungle TaiteiJungle Taitei TV Special

 Fuji TV, this summer

If you seen Mangaka master Osamu Tezuka’s brilliant tv series, or in fact Disney’s The Lion King, which (more than they will admit) borrows heavily from Kimba, than you know what to expect here. Known in the U.S. as Kimba: The White Lion, it was one of the earlier anime shows to make it stateside, and in fact all over the world. This television special will hopefully continue that popularity.

Website: Here!

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