Midori no Hibi: Big Grin

Wearing black glasses and a white dress suit, Rin Sawamura lays on a floor littered with empty cans. Propping her head up with one arm, she grins and holds out a package with her other arm to an angry Seiji Sawamura who's standing behind her.

Rin Sawamura loves drinking, hanging out with her old street gang, and messing with her little brother, Seiji. He, however, hates her devil-may-care behavior.
From the anime series Midori no Hibi (Midori Days)

Advertisements

Spring Anime 2018: Check These Shows Out, Too

The Sibling Spring continues. These shows also have brothers and sisters in them, even if it takes a few episodes before they appear (or reappear).

Akkun to Kanojo (My Sweet Tyrant)

Akkun to Kanojo (My Sweet Tyrant) title

Atsuhiro Kagari is a guy who’s completely head-over-heels in love with his girlfriend. He takes tons of pictures of her, listens to recordings of her voice, and regularly describes her as his angel…whenever she’s not around. In her presence, however, he nonchalantly insults or ignores her. In short, he’s a tsundere, but she doesn’t mind it one bit because she knows that he really does care. An angel, indeed.

Thank goodness each episode in this comedy only lasts a few minutes because any more than that would just be too much. Seriously, this guy should see a therapist because both his public and private expressions of love are rather extreme. Plus, it’s a good thing his girlfriend is so understanding (and quite frankly, a bit oblivious) because any other girl would slap him so fast it’s not even funny. Kudos to the author for treading the fine line here.

Full Metal Panic! Invisible Victory

Full Metal Panic! Invisible Victory title

Full Metal Panic! returns thirteen years after the last season aired and picks up immediately where The Second Raid left off. Sousuke Sagara, a soldier in a top secret military organization, continues his mission to protect high school student Kaname Chidori from an organization that seeks to capture her for her unique abilities. It’s full-on action right from the get-go, so get ready to move out!

Wow, I did not expect to see another season of this. And it’s not just Full Metal Panic! that came back after a lengthy hiatus; Cutey Honey is back, too — Cutey-freaking-Honey! — along with a few others this spring. It’s crazy and unexpected but most certainly welcome.

Fumikiri Jikan (Crossing Time)

Fumikiri Jikan (Crossing Time) title

A railroad crossing.
People must stop and wait here.
What thoughts will arise?

The micro-series format is perfect for a show like this. Each episode consists of a single scene with at least two characters who change in some way, great or small, by the end. Sometimes, the interactions are humorous; sometimes, it’s serious. So far, every week has a new set of characters, but I do hope they’ll revisit a few of them as the season goes on. If not, skip straight to episode 4 to see the siblings.

Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu Die Neue These Kaikou (The Legend of the Galactic Heroes: The New Thesis – Encounter)

Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu Die Neue These Kaikou (The Legend of Galactic Heroes: The New Thesis) title

In the far future, the two largest superpowers in space, the democratic Free Planets Alliance and the monarchic Galactic Empire, have been at war for the last 150 years. With the advent of a new generation of leadership, however, the decades-long conflict might finally see its end.

I love a good war story, and ever since the end of Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans, I’ve been waiting for another good one to appear. If what I’ve heard about this series is true, this will completely blow that one out of the water. Ready to enlist, sir!

Spring Anime 2018: Shows to Check Out

With winter’s end comes the traditional deluge of new shows, and with them, a gaggle of brothers and sisters. Get ready because the Sibling Spring has arrived. (And look for the second part of this list to be posted tomorrow.)

Alice or Alice: Siscon Niisan to Futago no Imouto (A Sister-holic Brother and His Twin Sisters)

Alice or Alice title

This slice-of-life micro-series focuses on the everyday lives of twin sisters Airi and Rise, their unnamed older brother, and their friends.

Although the name of the show distinctly calls out the brother as being obsessed with his sisters, I have yet to see much evidence of this. Maybe I’ve watched too many siblings series and have become desensitized or maybe he shows it more later on, but from what I’ve watched so far, he’s just a nice, helpful person. Of course, it’s hard to glean much when each episode is only a few minutes long, but this sweet and simple series is a nice chaser after viewing more serious fare.

Amanchu! Advance

Amanchu! Advance title

The sequel to the summer 2016 series continues the story of Futaba Ooki, the shy student who moved to an ocean-side town and started learning how to scuba dive. With her best friend Hikari and twin siblings Ai and Makoto, Futaba’s daily life has become much more relaxed and enjoyable.

I’ll be honest. Even though the twins are secondary characters in this series, I still find them much more interesting than the primary ones. I mean, the sister often enters a scene kicking the brother in the stomach, which never fails to elicit a laugh from me. It’s a running gag, but to me, their humorous interactions, though shallow, are more entertaining and more consistently so. I want to like the dynamic between Futaba and Hikari more than I currently do, but at this point, I’m rooting for a spin-off series starring the twins.

Side Note: Hikari’s exaggerated doll-face effect is still weird. Insane-killer weird. It’s just wrong.

Jikken-hin Kazoku: Creatures’ Family Days / Shiyan Pin Jiating

Jikken-hin Kazoku: Creatures' Family Days / Shiyan Pin Jiating title

Tanis is a boy who just wants to live a normal life with his four older siblings. The only problem is that they were all genetically modified by their scientist parents in a secluded location and said parents have since been arrested. Now, Tanis and his peculiar brothers and sisters must learn how to rely on each other and survive in the real world on their own.

It’s one thing to try to hide something from your family members, but what do you do if your sister’s an actual mind reader? Also, is it okay to be afraid of spiders when one of your other sisters is a human/spider hybrid? At least there’s no need to get a pet when your brother can already turn into a dog.

Interesting Note: This series is actually a Japanese-Chinese collaboration (one of two on this list) so it’s a hybrid in and of itself, too.

Juushinki Pandora (Last Hope / Unit Pandora)

Juushinki Pandora (Last Hope / Unit Pandora) title

It was believed that all of mankind’s energy problems were going to be solved by the creation of a reactor that could harness quantum power. However, upon its activation, a wave was sent out across the entire planet that caused machines to fuse together with the natural world, creating biotechnological lifeforms that were able to evolve at an incredible and deadly rate. Fighting a losing battle, humanity has since been pushed to the brink, but one man refuses to let us become next in line for extinction. After all, he accidentally helped destroy the world in the first place.

The second of the two Japanese-Chinese collaborations on this list also deals with hybridization. However, instead of man and nature, it’s nature and technology, one being something we can never control and the other being something we can (for now). That said, what’s most interesting about this tale is that it takes place not long after the cataclysm happened. In only a few short years (if that), humans went from being the most populous creatures on the planet to being on the verge of complete annihilation. It’s both humbling and terrifying to think about.

Mahou Shoujo Ore

Mahou Shoujo Ore title

Saki Uno is a normal teenage girl in love with her best friend’s brother. He’s a popular singer, so she becomes an amateur singer with her best friend in order to someday get closer to him.

Pretty normal, right?

After returning from a zero-attendee performance one day, she finds a gangster standing in front her house and is understandably frightened. However, when her mother comes home, Saki learns that her mom knows him because she used to work as a magical girl who fought against demons, and he was her assistant.

Are you with me so far?

Demon activity is inexplicably on the rise again, but mom is getting a bit too old to fight them. However, when Saki’s love interest gets taken, Saki agrees to become a magical girl to get him back.

HOWEVER…

  1. When she transforms, she becomes a burly, muscle-bound guy in a pink, frilly outfit.
  2. She doesn’t have any magical powers, so she has to beat the demons to death with her bare fists and a stick.
  3. After she saves her best friend’s brother, he falls in love with her guy form.

Still with me?

Later on, when Saki’s in trouble, her best friend confesses her love to her and also becomes a magical guy/girl to save Saki from a demon. Moreover, because their singer group manager just happened to see the battle, he suggests that the girls continue their singing work using their magical guy forms instead. Naturally, Saki is too embarrassed, but when she realizes it’s a way to see more of her best friend’s brother, she agrees. And it only gets weirder from there.

You there? Hello? Anybody?

Needless to say, this is another series that pokes fun at the magical girl genre, but honestly, between these comedic takes and the darker offerings, it’ll be interesting to see where the genre will go from here.

Tada-kun wa Koi wo Shinai (Tada Never Falls in Love)

Tada-kun wa Koi wo Shinai (Tada Never Falls in Love) title

Mitsuyoshi Tada is a high school student who loves taking pictures and wants to eventually become a professional photographer. A hard-worker, he lives and works with his grandfather in the family-owned coffee shop. When he’s out taking pictures one day, he encounters and helps Teresa Wagner, an optimistic and enthusiastic foreign exchange student who came to Japan because of a show she loves. The two become friends and then classmates, but of course, spring is in the air…

You already know how this story is going to turn out. Even the few surprises it tries to hide are hinted at heavily, so just sit back and enjoy the ride.