This season, whoever was in charge of saving the best for last must have flipped the order around because I’m already impressed with Shinsekai Yori for how it sets up the mood and plot already and Tonari for already giving me hope for the Shoujo genre.
Shinsekai Yori – 01:
If anything, SSY already shows us that though the main characters are all young, there’s no holding back on the insane levels of fear and suspense that will serve as the dominant emotion for this show. Truthfully, the characters weren’t as interesting, but if everything else (setting, mood, music, art) was A-tier, then the characterization being the only real ‘flaw’ for this episode is worth it. It bugs me to hear this show is “SHAFT”-like, because for me there’s two kinds of SHAFT style: the first is the huge change in art and lots of creative camera angles (think Baka to Test) and the second is the lazy white screens, flashing text to obviously conserve on the budget (Bakemonogatari). SSY falls into the first Shaft-style, obviously. Good to know the staff for this is really committed to making a solid adaptation, because this show is confirmed for 25 episodes! So many good things about this show, now it’s time for us to know more about the characters and…is this true?? (link may or may not be spoiler) Anyone who knows the source material, are those relationship charts for real? Very interesting if true, something for…everyone to like I guess. Still, for the first episode Shinsekai Yori shows tons of promise and with 25 episodes, it may just go beyond everyone’s expectations.
Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun – 01:
Yeah, I’m not using Crunchyroll’s english title (also, how do you ‘play’ H?). From what I saw of just one short trailer with the main girl Shizuku speaking engrish on the level of Senki Zesshou Symphogear, I wasn’t actually prepared for some bizarre humor, because Shoujo series are known for playing safe and giving us the same rehashed cliches. There is one thing that really bugged me: the scene where Haru (Tatsuhisa Suzuki, Takao in Kurobas) pulls Shizuku (Haruka Tomatsu) and tells her to be quiet or he’ll rape her…yeah that sounds pretty…messed up. It was obviously meant to be a joke, and the recent Haganai OVA actually did a good job with the whole ‘rape as comedy’ thing, of course I’m not even supporting actual rape. But here it just didn’t click and it felt really disgusting and mean spirited. Besides that, the pacing was a bit too fast (Shizuku meets Haru, Haru already confesses, Shizuku says no, they fight, they make up) but what I think this show has going for it is the chemistry between Haru and Shizuku. If anything, this show will keep the humor (minus rape) and focus on our main couple, because I’m already enjoying their antics. All signs point to a short, thirteen/twelve episode adaptation judging from the pacing.
OP: Very catchy, Haruka Tomatsu’s also singing the SAO ending but here, it’s really lively. Art is also creative.