Villians, Baseball, & Love – OH MY! Spring 2020 Recommendations!

Villians, Baseball, & Love – OH MY! Spring 2020 Recommendations!

I’ll start out this post the same way I start out every post I make, and that’s by making some jackass comment on how I never post and boy isn’t it a shock that I’m posting now.

Now that the stupid part of my post is out of the way, I am going to tell you about the six anime from the Spring 2020 season that I recommend you watch, and why I think you should watch them!

These are just my opinion, and if you disagree with me, that’s fine. I am okay with you being wrong. Let’s get started.

Gleipnir

Okay, let’s get this one out of the way first. This is one weird fucking show.

In an article about it, the Anime News Network referred to it as a “romantic action comedy”, and I guess, maybe, but I’m not sure romantic nor comedy are true definitions of what this show is.

The general gist of the show is that the main character, Shuichi, can turn into this weird mascot monster with a big ol’ gun thanks to some alien technology. One of his powers is his great sense of smell, and thanks to that he finds a fire and in that fire is a woman named “Claire”. Shuichi transforms, rescues her (even though she was actually trying to die by suicide), then almost molests her (perhaps that’s the romantic part?).

Long story short, Claire ends up blackmailing Shuichi into helping her track down these coins that are part of the alien plot as well as other monsters including her sister, who happened to also kill their parents.

Oh, and Claire can get inside of Shuichi and control him (but not with her clothes on because that would be weird…

Yeah, this is one weird fucking show. However, I obviously wouldn’t include it here if I didn’t like it. The story is pretty interesting and despite my half-assed explanation above, it’s not that hard to follow. Watching Claire go from a single purpose and using Shuichi as a tool to seeing her (at least seem to) develop some feeling for him is nice. There’s also a lot of character near nudity, which we here at 421a.MOE find awesome. The action scenes are good and well animated, and despite nowhere near enough to call it a comedy, there are humorous moments of levity that are enjoyable.

I am quite looking forward to the story progressing and finding out what the relationship is between Shuichi and Claire’s sister, what the alien’s true agenda is (never believe a word the ‘bad guy’ says), and as I am writing this between episodes six and seven, I look forward to seeing how Claire kills Shuichi when she finds out another woman was inside of him.

Gleipnir is my recommendation for the ‘sour’ that will go with the remaining ‘sweets’ for this post. It can be watched on Funimation.

Tamayomi

I love these yuri-lite type stories where you know they’re not actually going to get together, but maybe, right? Tamayomi is this season’s Koi Suru Asteroid, but instead of astronomy, baseball is the string that tied these two long lost friends together.

As an aside, I think Asteroid is way more than yuri-lite, especially after they moved in together, but that’s a story for another post…

Tamayomi is a story about Yomi, a pitcher with a wicked curveball who was unable to get to nationals thanks to her crappy catcher. By the way, it’s nice to see that in Japan they apparently let girls play baseball instead of forcing them into softball as the United States does. Tamaki is her childhood friend who went to a different middle school. Coincidentally she’s a catcher and she can handle Yomi’s hook. The two ended up meeting at high school and thanks to a lovable cast of other girls, they’re able to revive the school’s baseball team with the dream of making it to the championship!

This is a charming show with a ton of adorable characters. If you can get past the sometimes brutally terrible animation it’s a fun, relaxing show to take in.

I’m not kidding about the animation either.

This is a thread… There’s more…

Fortunately, none of the episodes since then have been as bad, and actually that episode was fixed up so you might not be subject to it anymore. The story its self isn’t complicated, and it’s likely there will be some manufactured conflict at some point nearly derailing the team (there always is in this kind of show). But whatever. It’s cute, it’s nice seeing some of the more technical aspects of baseball getting some love, and for some really bad reason, their uniforms consist of shorts, which cute girls or not are terrible for baseball but great for the viewer.

Swing away to Funimation to watch Tamayomi!

Otome Game no Hametsu Flag shika Nai Akuyaku Reijou ni Tensei Shiteshimatta…

a/k/a Hamefura.

This season’s isekai? Kinda. So before the series started, the main character died and ended up reincarnated in the show’s world. Rather than being a hero, or someone with a ton of power, or whatever, she ended up being reincarnated into the world the visual novel Fortune Lover. As a small child she suddenly regains her memories from her past life, which is great because she played Fortune Lover and knew all the routes!

What’s bad is that she – Catarina Claes – WAS THE BAD GUY! All of her routes lead to her either being exiled or killed. So the anime now focuses on her doing everything she can, thanks to her knowledge of the game and how it ends, to prevent her doom flag and at a minimum achieve a ‘meh’ ending.

Catarina is a very amusing character. She’s a noble but her old high school girl personality sneaks out on occasion, infuriating her parents. However, it’s this free spirit that makes her so popular among her clique and able to befriend all of those who became enemies in the game.

In fact, I think she may be too good at befriending them. Catarina is oblivious as a brick wall, but she pretty much has every single former enemy in love with her, which I am certain is going to lead to hilarious shenanigans later on.

This is a chart by Anime Trending shows just how out of control she’s gotten.

She has an adorable ‘Inside Out’ style council of Catarina’s in her head to help guide her through the world, helping her scheme and plot to avoid doom, though none of them have picked up on the fact that she’s assembled an accidental harem.

That’s okay, though. The show is brilliant, fun, well animated, and a nice break from the typical isekai trash we normally get (which I watch, so I won’t complain too much).

Hamefura is on Crunchyroll!

Kaguya-sama wa Kokurasetai? Tensai-tachi no Ren’ai Zunousen

a/k/a Kaguya-sama.

This is the second season to the similarly named anime from a couple of seasons ago. Kaguya-sama is an actual romantic comedy (directed at you, Gleipnir) which revolves around the student council at a prestigious school.

The president, Miyuki Shirogane, is in love with the vice president, Kaguya Shinomiya, and vice versa. However, due to pride, or the rules of the school or some other thing I don’t understand because I am old and have given up on love with a real human at this point, they cannot tell each other and does everything possible to get the other to confess first.

“Wait!” I hear you scream, “Isn’t that the first season’s plot?” Yes, it is. It is also the plot of the second season. There’s a slight twist in that this season contains a student council election, and some freaking adorable scheming by Kaguya’s retainer, Hayasaka. The show seems to be a bit more ‘slapstick’ this season insofar that there’s more over-emotional Fujiwara and Kaguya is way meeker for some reason.

I won’t spoil the end of the last season, but I assume that had something to do with Kaguya’s transformation.

Regardless, the show is just as enjoyable for no other reason than Chika Fujiwara. She’s literally the most adorable side character known to exist and I would pay money to watch a spin-off of her.

This show is not licensed in the US yet, but it is on Netflix for those in Japan or ‘unlisted regions’. The first season is on Hulu if you want to get caught up!

Honorable Mention

Before I get to my favorite anime of the season, I thought I would mention a few others I am watching and I think you should too if you have similar tastes to me!

Brand New Animal (BNA)

This show was done by Trigger, so you should watch it even if you hate anime. Everything touched by them is a work of art, so I don’t need to tell you more, but I will. It’s a fun action show that follows a cute human girl who turned into a cute tanuki girl. The girl went to Animacity, a city just for Beastmen! However, there’s nefariousness afoot! (Or should I say apaw?)

Like Kaguya-sama, this is only on Netflix for though in Japan or those outside of Japan with a VPN *wink wink*.

Gal to Kyouryuu

Kaede, a gyaru, brings home a dinosaur and a slice of life anime is created. That’s pretty much it. Half the show is live-action, which makes this show weirdly meta. There’s also some claymation shorts in the middle of it, I assume because they couldn’t figure out how to make a show about a constantly shocked dinosaur 30 minutes long otherwise.

It’s a fun show if you don’t take it too seriously. The creators didn’t! Gal and Dino is on Funimation!

Jashin-chan Dropkick! Dash!

Another second season, but don’t worry if you didn’t see the first. Other than not knowing who anyone is you won’t miss anything. (Well, I guess that’s a big thing to miss…)

Jashin-chan is a plotless slice of life show that’s funny and that’s all you need to know about why I watch it. I guess I also hope there’s a chance I will see Jashin’s nipples, but… No, probably not.

Anyway, watch angels and devils and a witch all live in quasi-harmony on Crunchyroll!

Kakushigoto

Doting single father to an adorable little girl named Hime. He’s so protective of her that he does everything he can to protect her from the fact that he’s a raunchy manga artist.

It’s a sweet, funny, slice of life show that will occasionally tug at your feels, and I think has some sad, dark parts coming up as they occasionally cut to the future where Hime is a high school girl going through her father and mother’s possessions. Hopefully, it won’t be too terrible.

Kakushigoto is on Funimation.

Houkago Teibou Nisshi

Another ‘childhood friends meet up for the first time in forever’ show, this one revolves around cute girls (well, a couple of them are cute) doing fishing.

Not much more than that. Especially since COVID-19 has delayed production and right now the show is perpetually frozen on episode three.

Once production resumes, I encourage you to watch it! It’s on Funimation!

…and now, my favorite that you have been waiting for me to name assuming you don’t know who the catgirl in the header image is…

Princess Connect! Re:Dive

Priconn may be my favorite anime in a long time. If you like shows that are fun, funny, and cute as fuck, then this is a 9.95 in every single category.

To summarize what I think is happening in this show, a hero, Yuuki, is summoned from another world. He arrives, but apparently, only 32.91% of his brain is functioning as he can’t seem to speak more than a single sentence at a time and is constantly being eaten by monsters. A really cute elf(ish) girl, Kokkoro, is dispatched by someone to take care of Yuuki, and in general, she does.

They stumble upon the gleeful idiot Pecorine, who I am pretty sure is a princess, who helps them out, and then because having only three people in a group is no good, they add Pecorine’s would-be assassin, a cute catgirl named Karyl, to their group (no, that is all typed correctly). The form a guild with the goal of eating the most delicious food in the land.

If I made the show sound stupid, well that’s my failure, not Pricoon’s. Literally, if you look up ‘fun’ in the dictionary, there will be a link to this show in it. It’s so enjoyable.

Pecorine is ridiculously energetic, with a bottomless pit for a stomach. She’s naive and a bit stupid too (and I don’t feel bad about saying that as she followed two dudes who robbed her around for three episodes because she thought one of them needed medicine). Even when they get into fights she is upbeat and optimistic. She’s also OP as fuck, so it will be fun to see what exactly her story is. Like I said before, I am pretty sure she’s a princess (the one the title refers to, I’d assume) as she wears a crown and has a massively ornate sword she got from her father.

Karyl (and literally every online source has her name spelled differently, so I am just using the spelling from the subtitles and Anilist) is a kitty-girl mage that started out in the show as a loner, is seemingly the only one with any common sense, and someone for unknown reasons was hire (or ordered, at least) to take out Pecorine. After trying to kill her with a dragon, Karyl is saved by Pecorine after letting the dragon nearly kill her after losing control over it. Karyl reluctantly joins the group and maintains her frustration with them while, I think, growing to like them and enjoy being with them.

Karyl’s story will be an interesting one to flush out. She mentions a ‘she’ when talking about her task to kill Pecorine. Who is that she and will she be out for revenge? Who knows!

Well, maybe people who played the game will. Priconn is based on the mobile game of the same name, but there’s no English version so I haven’t played it, and I enjoy not knowing the ending to shows, so I haven’t looked up any information.

Yuuki appears to be based on the player, which is probably why he’s got so little agency in the anime, constantly being thrown around, eaten, or otherwise maimed for the sake of comedy. One of the things that worried me about the Azur Lane anime was that they would ruin it by forcing the Commander into some kind of narrative role, but thankfully they did not. I think Priconn has done a good job here as well, letting Yukki be a plot device to bring the characters together, but not being the focus of the show.

The last member of the guild is Kokkoro, an elf(ish) girl that seems to be some kind of guardian for Yuuki. She refers to him as “my lord” and has basically devoted herself to protecting him. Thankfully she’s a mage who is really good with healing magic as he needs that a lot. She is quiet and reserved, quite the opposite of both Pecorine and Karyl, though she is a never-ending treasure trove of reaction shots every time Yuuki ends up in trouble. She also enjoys eating bugs, something that Karyl the cat finds disgusting. I’m not sure I buy that as I have owned cats and seen what they will eat and believe me, they are fine with bugs.

I cannot stress enough how much fun this show is. They include old school 8-bit video game sound effects, the animation looks just freaking awesome especially during the fight scenes (and I don’t keep pointing out the good animation just to shit on Tamayomi), the voice acting is superb, and have I mentioned yet how much fun the show is to watch? The problem with this is that each episode just flies by and it takes forever for the next week to hurry up and come.

My only gripe is that Karyl and the other catgirls I have seen in the show have human ears. I don’t know why that’s a pet peeve of mine, but it is. I guess that’s the benefit of not having any real-life problems.

I could keep going on and on and on, but I think you get the point. I love this show and it’s going to be on my short list for anime of the year. While you might not like it as much as I do, I am certain you will like it and I encourage you to watch if you’re not already! Priconn is on Crunchyroll!

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