Monday, March 21, 2011

Full Previews of 47 Spring Shows: Staff, Cast, Genre, Story, Trailer, Pic, Manga Scanlations, etc.

Hanasaku Iroha
Can it be? Has the anime industry recovered from whatever down period it has been passing through recently?

This spring, there are 47 new series, compared to 36 last spring and 35 the spring before. And I see promising shows in a number of genres.

Hanasaku Iroha -- The P.A. Works studio's tenth anniversary project. The story of a teenage girl going to work at a hot-spring hotel. Directed by the director of Canaan and written by the writer of true tears. Itou Kanae, Omigawa Chiaki, Toyosaki Aki, Tomatsu Haruka, Noto Mamiko, Suwabe Junichi.

C - The Money of Soul and Possibility Control -- A new noitaminA drama involving finance in a post-apocalyptic Japan. Directed by the director of Mononoke and starring Uchiyama Kouki and Tomatsu Haruka.

Denpa Onna to Seishun Otoko -- Shaft's Akiyuki Shinbou animates an absurdist loli comedy starring Katou Emiri and Irino Miyu. Character design by Nishida Asako, who designed and animated Simoun.

A Channel -- Absurd slice-of-life comedy from the staff that made Saki. Starring Fukuhara Kaori, the brilliant Yuuki Aoi, and Kotobuki Minako.

Nichijou -- The director of Haruhi makes KyoAni's answer to A Channel: another absurd comedy, starring two of the seiyuus who helped make Seitokai no Ichizon so good.

Showa Monogatari -- A comedy-drama about life in the early 1960s, when Japan was transforming itself from post-war poverty to the advanced and wealthy country it has become. Supposedly aimed at older adults who were alive during those years.

Steins;Gate -- Science-fiction adventure directed by Satou Takuya (Ichigo Mashimaro, Seitokai no Ichizon) and written by Hanada Jukki (SeiZon, Rozen Maiden). Starring Miyano Mamoru, Imai Asami, Hanazawa Kana, Seki Tomokazu, et al.

Deadman Wonderland -- Shounen science-fiction with Kafkaesque overtones, from a manga by the author of Eureka Seven, and starring Paku Romi and Hanazawa Kana.

Sekai-ichi Hatsukoi --Yaoi comedy-drama directed by Kon Chiaki (Higurashi, Nodame Finale, Zakuro) and written by Nakase Rika (Junjou Romantica, Kanamemo). Starring Kondou Takeshi and Konishi Katsuyuki, with a starry supporting cast.

And that's not all.... I'm also optimistic about 30-sai no Hoken Taiiku, Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai, Ao no Exorcist, Appleseed XIII, Astarotte no Omocha!, Dog Days, Fujilog, Gintama, Gyakkyou Burai Kaiji: Hakairoku Hen, Hyouge Mono, and MariaHolic Alive. I don't see any promising shoujo romances, but that's about it.

Anyway, here is an alphabetical list of all the new shows, linked to full previews giving staff, cast, story, pic, trailer, manga scan, etc.


C - The Money of Soul and Possibility Control     ● 30-sai no Hoken Taiiku     ● A Channel     ● Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai     ● Ao no Exorcist     ● Appleseed XIII     ● Astarotte no Omocha!     ● Bakugan Battle Brawlers Gandalian Invaders     ● Danball Senki     ● Deadman Wonderland     ● Denpa Onna to Seishun Otoko     ● Dog Days     ● Dororon Enma-kun Meeramera     ● Fireball Charming     ● Fujilog     ● Gintama     ● Gyakkyou Burai Kaiji: Hakairoku Hen     ● Hanasaku Iroha     ● Happy Kappy     ● Hen Zemi     ● Hidan no Aria     ● Hoshizora e Kakaru Hashi     ● Hyouge Mono     ● Jewelpet Sunshine     ● Maria Holic Alive     ● Metal Fight Beyblade 4D     ● Nichijou     ● Oretachi ni Tsubasa wa Nai     ● Pretty Rhythm: Aurora Dream     ● Ring ni Kakero 1 - Sekai Daikai Hen     ● Seikon no Qwaser II     ● Sekai-ichi Hatsukoi     ● Sengoku Otome - Momoiro Paradox     ● Showa Monogatari     ● Sket Dance     ● Sockie's Frontier Quest     ● Sofuteni     ● Steins;Gate     ● Suzy`s Zoo: Daisuki! Witzy     ● The World God Only Knows II     ● Tiger and Bunny     ● Toriko     ● Tottoko Hamtarou Dechu     ● X-MEN     ● Yondemasu yo, Azazel-san (2011)     ● Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal     ● Yuruani?

And here are the full previews, in the order they will debut on TV. Titles link to more info in English, mainly at Anime News Network. Japanese titles link to official sites. "jpWiki" links to the show's Japanese Wikipedia page, which I consult a lot, and usually find the fullest source of information.

Danbooru Senki
  (jp: ダンボール戦機)   jpWiki

shounen battles
"Cardboard War Chronicles." Adapted from a kids' RPG by the writers of Inazuma Eleven, Pokemon DP and BW, and Yugioh 5Ds. Stars Inoue Marina, Namikawa Daisuke, and Kubota Megumi, who has had only a few roles in her fifteen-year career.

seiyuus: Kubota Megumi, Inoue Marina, Namikawa Daisuke, Oda Hisafumi, Fujimoto Jou, Touichi Hiroki, Nakamura Yuuichi.
director: Takahashi Naohito (Pokemon movies asst dir)
writer: Tomioka Atsuhiro (Pokemon BW, DP; Yugioh 5Ds; Pumpkin Scissors). Hino Akihiro (orig story; Inazuma Eleven orig story).
animation: OLM. chara-des: Nishimura Hiroki (Deltora, Kurokami).
wed 02 mar 19:27 trailer.


Sockie's Frontier Quest
  (jp: ソッキーズ フロンティアクエスト)

kids
Kids' anime. Not much info yet available, except that it will star the enjoyable Miyazaki Ui.

seiyuus: Miyazaki Ui, Nagasawa Nao, Kaneda Megumi.
director: Yatate Kyou.
writer: Adachi Motoichi (orig).
animation: Kachidoki Studio.
fri 18:20. begins sometime in April.


X-MEN
  (jp: X-MEN)   jpWiki

sci-fi adventure
The X-Men are reunited, and  summoned to Japan after the abduction of a teammate. There, they confront the U-Men, a lunatic cult that steals and transplants mutant organs to strengthen their own army.

Neither Iron Man nor Wolverine did much for me, and not seeing a writer's name in the credits posted so far doesn't give me much confidence. But the cast looks solid.

seiyuus: Morikawa Toshiyuki, Koyama Rikiya, Hori Katsunosuke, Hisakawa Aya, Yamagata Kaori, Sakakibara Yoshiko, Hino Yurika, Tamura Yukari, Tanaka Hideyuki.
director: Kisaki Fuminori
animation: Madhouse. chara-des: Yokoyama Ai (new, keyanim). animation supervisor: Chiba Michinori (GalxAngelZ, Basilisk, Gundam00movie).
music: Takahashi Tetsuya (Tou, Iron Man, Wolverine).
fri 01 apr 22:00 trailer. 12eps.


Tottoko Hamtarou Dechu
  (jp: とっとこハム太郎でちゅ)

family
Little info available. Click around the official site for a glimpse of the world.

writer: Kawai Ritsuko (creator).
sat 02 apr 09:00






Jewelpet Sunshine
  (jp: ジュエルペット サンシャイン)

kids shoujo
The less-than-inspiring kids' anime gets a third year of episodes. It must be doing its job of selling Sanrio toys. I am happy that it keeps giving employment to the unique voice of Sasaki Nozomi.

Toyosaki Aki joins the cast, which already includes Hirano Aya and Sawashiro Miyuki.

seiyuus: Saitou Ayaka, Sawashiro Miyuki, Toyosaki Aki, Hirano Aya, Sasaki Nozomi, Kaida Yuki, MAKO, KENN, Shimizu Ai.
director: Inagaki Takayuki
writer: Kakihara Yuuko. Sega, Sanrio.
animation: Studio Comet.
sat 02 apr 09:30 trailer.



Pretty Rhythm: Aurora Dream
  (jp: プリティーリズム オーロラドリーム)   jpWiki

kids' shoujo
Prism Stars are super-idols, performers in a popular new ice show. Aira and Rizumu are Prism Stars whose goal is to reach the top, and become the Prism Queen.

Like Jewelpet and Yumeiro Patissiere, this is a show designed as advertising for lines of products for young girls. That doesn’t mean the show has to be bad, as Yumeiro Patissiere proved. The presence of Asumi Kana as the lead, of the character designer from Bakemonogatari, of the director of Onmyou Taisenki and a Yatterman movie, and of the writer of Arakawa, give hints that this might be a decent show.

seiyuus: Asumi Kana, Kataoka Azusa, Hara Sayuri, Kondou Takashi, KENN, Okamoto Nobuhiko, Chiba Susumu, Sasaki Nozomu, Hayamizu Risa, Kumai Motoku, Itou Kanae.
director: Hishida Masakazu (Onmyou Taisenki, Yatterman movie)
writer: Akao Deko (Arakawa). Takaratomy, synSophia.
animation: Tatsunoko. chara-des: Watanabe Akio (Bakemonogatari).
music: Nagaoka Seikou (Strike Witches). OP Lisp, ED SUPER☆GiRLS.
sat 02 apr 10:00


Dog Days
  (jp: DOG DAYS)   jpWiki

loli romantic comedy
Princess Millefiore of the Biscotti Republic summons a brave warrior from an alternate world to defend the republic from invasion. The "brave warrior" turns out to be a thirteen-year-old boy. Cute girls with animal-ears (kemonomimi) are much in evidence.

One of the starriest cast lists this season: Miyano Mamoru, Horie Yui, Taketatsu Ayana, Mizuki Nana, Koyasu Takehito, Hikasa Youko, Asumi Kana, Koshimizu Ami, Kakihara Tetsuya, Takahashi Mikako….

Director Kusakawa Keizou directed Nanoha A's and Sekirei. Writer Tsuzuki Masaki did scripts for Nanoha and is the author of this original work.

As for the music: OP by Mizuki Nana, ED by Horie Yui. BGM by I've Sound.

seiyuus: Miyano Mamoru, Horie Yui, Taketatsu Ayana, Mizuki Nana, Koyasu Takehito, Hikasa Youko, Asumi Kana, Koshimizu Ami, Kakihara Tetsuya, Takahashi Mikako.
director: Kusakawa Keizou (Nanoha A's, Sekirei, Asura Cryin')
writer: Tsuzuki Masaki (Nanoha scripts, original work).
animation: Seven Arcs. chara-des: Sakata Osamu (White Album anidir).
music: I've Sound. OP Mizuki Nana, ED Horie Yui.
sat 02 apr 23:30 12eps.


Tiger and Bunny
  (jp: TIGER + BUNNY)   jpWiki

sci-fi action comedy
The city of Shutenbilt is home to people of various races and backgrounds, including the superheroes called "Next".

Each hero has a corporate sponsor. As they overcome disasters and save people, they improve the image of their sponsor. In addition, they earn Hero Points, which determine their ranking on the popular Hero TV program.

One of these Heroes is Wild Tiger (Kaburagi T. Kotetsu), a hotheaded veteran with a strong sense of justice. One day, he is partnered with a newbie….

The director of Karas works here with a prolific film and drama writer. Let's see what they come up with…for Sunrise.

seiyuus: Hirata Hiroaki (Sanji/Onepiece, Benny/Black Lagoon), Morita Masakazu, Kotobuki Minako, Kusunoki Taiten, Ise Mariya, Tsuda Kenjiro, Inoue Go, Okamoto Nobuhiko.
director: Satou Keiichi (Karas)
writer: Nishida Masafumi (film/drama writer). Katsura Masakazu.
animation: Sunrise.
music: Ike Yoshihiro (Flag, Cobra). OP Unison Square Garden, ED Aobouzu.
sat 02 apr 25:58 trailer


Nichijou
  (jp: 日常)   jpWiki

slice-of-life absurd comedy
The setting for "Everyday" is a weird school where you might suddenly see the principal wrestling a deer. However there are many normal stories, like making a card castle or taking a test you didn't study for. (from ann)

Another slice-of-life comedy from Kyoto Animation, this time by the director of Haruhi. To make things even more promising, the writer is Hanada Jukki, who did such a brilliant job of adapting Seitokai no Ichizon.

He has brought with him two of the surprising seiyuus from that show: Honda Mariko and Togashi Misuzu. Has KyoAni found another batch of excellent new voices? Will it create another smash hit? It's possible. The manga is amusing.

And the recently released "episode 0" was good, with godly animation, jokes that worked, and some enjoyable voices. We'll all be comparing this show with another new absurd comedy: A Channel.

seiyuus: Honda Mariko (club chair/SeiZon), Togashi Misuzu (Minatsu/SeiZon), Horikawa Chika, Konno Hiromi, Chou, Aizawa Mai, Shiraishi Minoru.
director: Ishihara Tatsuya (Haruhi)
writer: Hanada Jukki (Rozen Maiden, SeiYaku, Level E). Arawi Keiichi.
animation: KyoAni. chara-des: Nishiya Futoshi (Haruhi-chan).
music: Nomo Yuuji (Whisper of the Heart, Hi no Tori, Bokurano).
sat 02 apr 26:20 trailer. manga. 26eps.


Yondemasu yo, Azazel-san (2011)
  (jp: よんでますよ、アザゼルさん)   jpWiki

comedy, supernatural, detective
Tales of the demon detective Akutabe, whose very look makes even demons fear. Of his bright assistant Sakuma. And of his dog-faced demon slave Azazel.

Director Mizushima Tsutomu did xxxHolic and Ookiku Furikabutte (Big Windup). The cast is strong. Production IG.

I haven't seen it, but by some accounts, the original short OVA was funny. This show has possibilities.

seiyuus: Namikawa Daisuke, Satou Rina, Onosaka Masaya, Kamiya Hiroshi, Kobayashi Yuu, Nakai Kazuya, Shiraishi Ryouko, Genda Tesshou.
director: Mizushima Tsutomu (xxxHolic, Ookiku Furikabutte)
animation: Production IG. chara-des: Taniguchi Junichirou (Ryouko's Case File; MadoMagi anidir).
music: Takagi Ryuuji (Kemeko Deluxe). OP Team Nekokan featuring Yonekura Chihiro.
sat 02 apr 26:58 trailer. manga.


Hen Zemi
  (jp: 変ゼミ)   jpWiki

seinen comedy
Nanako is a normal university student who happens to enroll in an Abnormal Physiology Seminar. She tries to keep her mental state sound, but her sexually abnormal classmates start to make her lose her bearings.

Hanazawa Kana and Ishida Akira make the running here. I was lukewarm about the original OVA. Just a bit too nasty for me. But this has a new director, so we shall see (same production company and writer, though).

seiyuus: Hanazawa Kana, Ishida Akira, Takaguchi Yukiko, Shiraishi Minoru, Kawaragi Shiho, Mori Norihisa, Shintani Ryouko, Matsuyama Takashi.
director: Katou Takao
writer: Kouno Takamitsu (Ayakashi, Kyou no Go no Ni, Oretachi no Tsubasa wa Nai). Tagro.
animation: XEBEC.
OP Hanazawa Kana.
sat 02 apr 27:13 trailer. manga.


Metal Fight Beyblade 4D
  (jp: メタルファイト ベイブレード 4D)

shounen fighting-top battles
Third series of this show, which is designed to sell a line of fighting-top toys.

seiyuus: Kanada Aki, Hino Satoshi, Katou Emiri, Shindou Kei, Makiguchi Mayuki, Miyake Kenta.
director: Sugishima Kunihisa
writer: Hasegawa Katsumi. Adachi Takafumi.
animation: Synergy SP. chara-des: Nagamori Yoshihiro.
sun 03 apr 08:30 trailer. manga.







Bakugan Battle Brawlers Gandalian Invaders
  (jp: 爆丸バトルブローラーズ ガンダリアンインベーダーズ)

kids shounen fighting
Bakugan Interspace has gone active across the entire world, and kids are having fun testing their skills against Dan, Shun, and Marucho.

However the Brawlers soon learn that some Bakugan were sent into an alternate dimension when Vestroia became six different groups. These Bakugan are now at war with each other as the Gundalians and the Neathians fight for control of their dimension and look to recruit the strongest fighters from Earth to their cause.

When the battle spreads to Bakugan Interspace, the Brawlers must decide which side they will join and how they can keep other kids from falling into the politics of war. (ann)

Lovely cast (Fujiwara Keiji, Kobayashi Yuu, Hirohashi Ryou…), but not my thing.

seiyuus: Fujiwara Keiji, Kobayashi Yuu, Hirohashi Ryou, Narita Ken, Nojima Hirofumi, Oohata Shintarou, Suzuki Chihiro.
director: Hashimoto Mitsuo (DBZ movies, Bakugan)
writer: Akao Deko et al.
animation: TMS Entertainment. OP Lisp.
sun 03 apr 09:00 trailer.


Toriko
  (jp: トリコ)   jpWiki

shounen comedy adventure
Toriko's job is to hunt down the rarest and finest ingredients for gourmet restaurants. As one of the most skilled hunters in the world he is regularly hired by restaurants and the rich to seek out new ingredients and rare animals.

This doesn’t appear to be my thing, but Paku Romi and Okiayu Ryoutarou are a good start on the cast.

seiyuus: Paku Romi, Okiayu Ryoutarou.
director: Zako Akifumi (new, epdir Precure)
writer: Murayama Isao (new, scripts for Precure, Kaidan Restaurant, Kuuchuu Buranko). Murayama Isao.
animation: Toei. chara-des: Kagawa Hisashi.
OP Kushida Akira.
sun 03 apr 09:00 trailer. manga.


Suzy`s Zoo: Daisuki! Witzy
  (jp: Suzy's Zoo だいすき!ウィッツィー)

kids
The anime adapts the American greeting card line Suzy's Zoo, from the San Diego-based artist Suzy Spafford. The story will center around a duckling named Witzy and his stuffed animal friends. (anidb)

Great names in the cast, although the show itself doesn’t attract me: Nakahara Mai, Taketatsu Ayana, Saiga Mitsuki, Gotou Saori, Shiraishi Ryouko and Sakamoto Maaya should get people's attention.

The director and writer seem to be unknowns.

seiyuus: Nakahara Mai, Shiraishi Ryouko, Taketatsu Ayana, Saiga Mitsuki, Gotou Saori, Sakamoto Maaya.
director: Ohara Hidekazu
writer: Kita Kaori.
animation: Digital Media Lab.
sun 03 apr 12:54


Hanasaku Iroha
  (jp: 花咲くいろは)   jpWiki

drama
An original project produced by the P.A. Works studio as its tenth anniversary work. The story revolves around the hopes and dreams of 16 year-old Matsumae Ohana, as she begins working at a hot spring inn.

Director Andou Masahiro did Canaan. Writer Okada Mari's most recent works are Gosick, Fractale, and Hourou Musuko. She also was lead writer on Canaan.

The seiyuus are an interesting mix, with Itou Kanae and Omigawa Chiaki, Toyosaki Aki and Tomatsu Haruka, Noto Mamiko and Suwabe Junichi.

I'm a fan of PA Works animation, and the trailers look gorgeous. Original chara-des by Mel Kishida (So-Ra-No-Wo-To). Adapted for anime by Sekiguchi Kanami (Canaan, work on true tears).

seiyuus: Itou Kanae, Omigawa Chiaki, Toyosaki Aki, Tomatsu Haruka, Noto Mamiko, Kaji Yuuki, Kubota Tamie, Hamada Kenji, Majima Junji, Suwabe Junichi.
director: Andou Masahiro (Canaan)
writer: Okada Mari.
animation: PA Works. chara-des: Sekiguchi Kanami, Kishida Mel (orig).
music: Hamaguchi Shirou. OP nano.RIPE ED Sphere.
sun 03 apr 22:00 trailer. 26eps.


Showa Monogatari
  (jp: 昭和物語)   jpWiki

comedy drama
Portraying life in Tokyo in the early 1960s, when Japan was just emerging from post-war poverty to become a great economic power. Supposedly aimed at an audience of the seniors who were children and teens at that time.

Overall, neither the cast nor the staff seems particularly sparkling, but the preview looks interesting.

seiyuus: Fukuen Misato, Chiba Shouya, Aoki Makoto, Matsumoto Yasunori, Tamagawa Sakiko, Tsukada Masaaki, Takagi Wataru, Yoshino Hiroyuki.
director: Kugimiya Hiroshi (new; work on Japan Our Homeland, Yumeiro Patissiere, Sunred); Tougou Mitsuhiro (Comic Party Revolution)
writer: Hirano Yasushi (work on City Hunter, Before Green Gables)
animation: Wao World. chara-des: Tatsuo Yanagino (First Kiss Story).
sun 03 apr 22:00 trailer. 13eps.


Oretachi ni Tsubasa wa Nai
  (jp: 俺たちに翼はない)   jpWiki

romantic comedy-drama from an ero-game
Three friends and the women who change their lives. From an ero-game by Navel (Shuffle).

The director of Shukufuku no Campanella. The writer of Kyou no Go no Ni. This looks like a second-rate show, but I thought Campanella really got across the feeling of an ero-game. And Kyou no Go no Ni had its hilarious moments. So I am still interested to see how this turns out.

And I am always interested to hear an ero-game adaptation voiced by the ero-game seiyuus, as this one appears to be.

seiyuus: Yoshida Mayumi (Himeji/Himawari), Ono Ryouko (Kazuha/Yosuga, Atsuko/Minamike), Gotou Yuuko, Matayoshi Ai (Rin/Yozakura), Asai Kiyomi, Takahashi Chiaki, Shimono Hiro, Miura Hiroaki (Shido Matagu/Onegai Teacher, Twins), Suwabe Junichi, Hino Satoshi.
director: Ushiro Shinji (Straitjacket, Campanella)
writer: Kouno Takamitsu (Kyou no Go no Ni).
animation: NOMAD. chara-des: Ishii Kumi (Kurenai).
OP Misato Aki, ED Hashimoto Miyuki.
sun 03 apr 24:30 trailer. 12eps.


Hoshizora e Kakaru Hashi
  (jp: 星空へ架かる橋)   jpWiki

harem romantic comedy
Kazuma's younger brother has to move to the country for his health, and Kazuma accompanies him. On the way to school, they become lost, and a girl called Ui tries to guide them. Kazuma accidentally bumps into Ui and their lips meet. Her friend sees them, and Kazuma's troubles begin. From a game by feng.

A cliched story, a first-time director, the writer of such shows as Chokotto Sister and Koihime Musou, and the character designer of Tayutama. This all points at a second-rate harem comedy. But perhaps the story and characters will transcend all that. And perhaps the new director will be excellent. He did direct episodes of Genshiken and Before Green Gables. The trailer makes the character design look quite moe.

Stars scriptwriter/actor/director/seiyuu/designer Asanuma Shintarou, who has improved his good reputation even further by letting his twitter account be used as a clearing house of information after the earthquake.

seiyuus: Asanuma Shintarou, Nakamura Eriko, Aoba Ringo, Takahashi Chiaki, Ookubo Aiko, Yoshida Mayumi, Shimizu Ai, Kadowaki Mai, Kawaragi Shiho.
director: Mihara Takenori (new; eps of Genshiken, Before Green Gables)
writer: Go Zappa (Chokotto Sister, Koihime Musou). feng (game).
animation: Dogakobo. chara-des: Ogawara Haruo (Tayutama).
OP Nomiko, ED Nakamura Eriko, Shimizu Ai.
mon 04 apr 09:00 trailer. 12eps.


Gintama'
  (jp: 銀魂')   jpWiki

samurai sci-fi comedy
The new season of this immensely popular show is one of the most highly awaited new offerings of the year.

Cast and staff will likely remain the same as in the previous series, but have not yet been announced officially. I have taken a chance and listed the old cast and staff.

seiyuus: Sugita Tomokazu, Kugimiya Rie, Sakaguchi Daisuke, Sugimoto Yuu, Takamatsu Shinji, Tachiki Fumihiko, Sakaguchi Kouichi, Fujiwara Keiji, Nakai Kazuya, Aono Takashi.
director: Takamatsu Shinji
writer: Yamatoya Akatsuki. Sorachi Hideaki (orig).
animation: Sunrise. chara-des: Takeuchi Shinji. animation supervisor: Takeuchi Shinji.
music: Audio Highs.
mon 04 apr 18:00 trailer. manga.


Fireball Charming
  (jp: ファイアボール チャーミング)   jpWiki

sci-fi comedy
The trifling daily life of aristocrats living on a fully mechanized planet in the far future. Thirteen two-minute episodes. I have absolutely no idea what this will be like. Disney Channel.

seiyuus: Kawasho Miyuki, Ohkawa Tohru.
director: Arakawa Wataru (Fireball)
writer: Arakawa Wataru.
animation: Jinni's Animation Studio. chara-des: Yanase Takayuki.
music: Usui Yoshiyuki.
mon 04 apr 19:28 13x2min eps. trailer.





Sengoku Otome - Momoiro Paradox
  (jp: 戦国乙女~桃色パラドックス~)   jpWiki

ecchi historical comedy
The Japanese Warring States Period, but all the famous heroes are women. A modern middle-school boy is suddenly thrown into the midst of the fighting. Based on a pachinko game.

A good supporting cast, including Toyoguchi Megumi, Kitamura Eri, and Ise Mariya. And hearing young Hidaka Rina as the star will be interesting. But the staff is less interesting: directed by the director of Nagasarete Airandou and DC2. Written by the writer of Idolmaster, Lucky Star, and Allison and Lillia.

seiyuus: Hidaka Rina, Toyoguchi Megumi, Kitamura Eri, Hirata Yuka, Mochizuki Rei, Akesaka Satomi, Kokuryu Sachi, Ise Mariya.
director: Okamoto Hideki (Nagasarete Airantou, DC2, Nana to Kaoru)
writer: Machida Touko (Idolmaster, Lucky Star, Allison & Lillia).
animation: TMS Entertainment.
OPED Tenkatori Kai (Akesaka Satomi, Ise Mariya, Kokuryu Sachi, Mochizuki Rei).
mon 04 apr 26:00 trailer.


Gyakkyou Burai Kaiji: Hakairoku Hen
  (jp: 逆境無頼カイジ 破戒録篇)   jpWiki

seinen gambling drama
A continuation of the harsh gambling comedy Kaiji, based largely on the pachinko section of the original manga.

Director Satou Yuzo did One Outs and Iron Man, as well as Kaiji. Writer Takayashiki Hideo did Maison Ikkoku, One Outs, and Kaiji.

Not my cup of tea, but obvious quality.

seiyuus: Hagiwara Masato, Namikawa Daisuke, Uchida Naoya, Tsukayama Masane, Tachiki Fumihiko.
director: Satou Yuzo (Gokusen, Kaiji, One Outs, Iron Man)
writer: Takayashiki Hideo (Maison Ikkoku, Kaiji, One Outs, Ride Back, Souten Kouro). Fukunoto Nobuyuki (Akagi, Kaiji mangas).
animation: Madhouse.
music: Taniuchi Hideki (Deathnote, Kaiji, Realdrive).
tue 05 apr 24:59 manga.


Steins;Gate
  (jp: STEINS;GATE)   jpWiki

sci-fi adventure
Set in Akihabara. A group of friends customize a microwave to send text messages to the past. As they experiment, an organization which has been doing its own research on time travel begins to track them down. A dead girl. The disappearance of Akihabara. From a visual novel by 5pb and Nitroplus, who made Chaos;Head.

The director of Ichigo Mashimaro and Seitokai no Ichizon. The writer of Rozen Maiden, SeiZon, and Kuragehime. Miyano Mamoru. Hanazawa Kana. Seki Tomokazu. Tamura Yukari. Momoi Haruko. Kobayashi Yuu. Gotou Saori. Highly promising.

seiyuus: Miyano Mamoru, Imai Asami, Hanazawa Kana, Seki Tomokazu, Tamura Yukari, Momoi Haruko, Kobayashi Yuu, Gotou Saori.
director: Satou Takuya (IchiMash, SeiZon), Hamasaki Hiroshi (Texhnolyze)
writer: Hanada Jukki (Rozen Maiden, SeiZon, Kuragehime). 5pb/Nitoplus (original visual novel).
animation: White Fox.
OP Itou Kanako, ED Sakakibara Yui.
tue 05 apr 26:05 trailer. manga. 24eps.


Happy Kappy
  (jp: はっぴ~カッピ)   jpWiki

kids
Kids' show from Shogakukan. Suguri is a nine-year-old girl who loves animals and making fashion accessories. One day, while she is out buying materials for accessories, she comes across an unusual rock. Thinking it would look cute on a bracelet, she goes to pick it up and discovers a creature named Kappy. Kappy turns out to be the three-year-old prince of Kapimeshia. (from ann)

Katou Emiri stars, following her triumph as Kyuube in Madoka Magica. And lovely weirdo Gotou Saori is in the cast. With roles in five new shows, perhaps her career is beginning to move again.

This is Minezawa Takuya's first directoral job. On the other hand, writer Konparu Tomoko is one of the most experienced anime writers, having done NANA, Nodame Cantabile, Chi's Sweet Home, Kimi ni Todoke, etc., etc.

This may be a kids' show, but the staff and cast make me want to take a look.

seiyuus: Katou Emiri, Ookubo Rumi, Hayami Kentarou, Gotou Saori.
director: Minezawa Takuya (new)
writer: Konparu Tomoko (NANA, Nodame Cantabile, Chi's Sweet Home, Kimi ni Todoke). Mizuho Rino (manga).
animation: Shogakukan Music and Digital Entertainment.
wed 06 apr 07:30


30-sai no Hoken Taiiku
  (jp: 30歳の保健体育)   jpWiki

sex, health, and romance how-to
Based on a how-to book by the same title ("Health and Physical Education for 30-Year-Olds"), this show is aimed at shy men in their 30s who have no experience of romance or sex with women.

Hayao is a 30 year-old virgin bachelor. One day, a "cupid" descends from heaven with the express purpose of forcing him to "graduate" from virginity. We are led into a pure love story between two completely inexperienced thirty-year-olds.

I hardly know what to expect, but the director of Tono to Isshou is an intriguing start, and the seiyuu list looks good, including the latest seiyuu to announce her marriage, Nazuka Kaori.

seiyuus: Shimono Hiro, Nazuka Kaori, Okiayu Ryoutarou, Watanabe Yui, Kitamura Eri.
director: Mankyuu (Tono to Isshou)
writer: Akiyama Ryou.
animation: Gathering
wed 06 apr 27:00 trailer.


Sket Dance
  (jp: SKET DANCE)   jpWiki

school comedy
From a popular manga that has already gone through 14 volumes. The Sket Team is a school club whose mission is to help people with their problems. In reality, they spend most of their time just hanging out together in their clubroom. The occasional requests that they do receive are usually quite trivial.

Director Kawaguchi Keiichirou did all the Hayate series, Nyan Koi, and Yutori-chan. He has a gift for comedy. Writer Inotsume Shinichi did Hayate and Nyan Koi with him.

Stars Yoshino Hiroyuki, Shiraishi Ryouko, and Sugita Tomokaze give this show even more appeal.

seiyuus: Yoshino Hiroyuki, Sugita Tomokazu, Shiraishi Ryouko.
director: Kawaguchi Keiichirou (Hayate, Zettai Karen, Nyan Koi, Yutori-chan)
writer: Inotsume Shinichi (Hayate, Ristorante Paradiso, Nyan Koi).
animation: Tatsunoko.
music: Naruse Shuhei. OP French Kiss, ED the pillows.
thu 07 apr 18:00 trailer. manga.


Hyouge Mono
  (jp: へうげもの)   jpWiki

historical seinen drama
Mashimo Kouichi of Bee Train tries his hand at a top historical manga. The manga has been running in Kodansha's Morning magazine since 2005. It won the Grand Prize in the 14th Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prizes (2010), and an Excellence Prize in the 13th Japan Media Arts Festival Awards (2009).

The story is set during Japan's Warring States era and centers on Furuta Sasuke, a vassal general of the great warlord Oda Nobunaga. He is obsessed with tea ceremony and material elegance, rather than with war.

Definitely worth a look.

seiyuus: Ookura Kouji, Koyama Rikiya, Ebara Masashi, Tanaka Nobuo, Tanaka Hideyuki, Tsurumi Shingo.
director: Mashimo Kouichi
writer: Kawasaki Hiroyuki (Ryouko's Case File, Yakumo). Yamada Yoshiro (manga).
animation: Bee Train.
thu 07 apr 23:00 manga. 39eps.


Hidan no Aria
  (jp: 緋弾のアリア)   jpWiki

ecchi fighting comedy
a.k.a. "Aria of the Scarlet Ammo." Tokyo Butei High School is a special school for training armed detectives. Second-year student Kinji Tooyama has a special ability, but he keeps it a secret to maintain an ordinary, peaceful life. But when he gets caught in a bombing on the way to school, he encounters H. Aria Kanzaki, the most powerful S-Rank student in Assault Studies. (from ann)

Directed by the director of Shakugan no Shana, Freezing, and Dai Maou. Written by the writer of Yumekui Merry. Stars Kugimiya Rie and Majima Junji, with Takahashi Mikako and Ise Mariya. Looks like a quality harem fighting comedy.

seiyuus: Kugimiya Rie, Majima Junji, Takahashi Mikako, Ise Mariya, Ishihara Kaori.
director: Watanabe Takashi (Shana, DaiMaou, Freezing)
writer: Shirane Hideki (Isekai no Seikishi, Yumekui Merry). Akamatsu Chuugaku (manga).
animation: JC Staff. chara-des: Iwakura Kazunori (Ai yori Aoshi).
music: Ozawa Takumi (Ookamikakushi). OP May'n, ED Nakano Aiko.
thu 07 apr 25:25 trailer. manga.


Sofuteni
  (jp: そふてにっ)   jpWiki

school comedy
Comedy set in a school's soft tennis club, featuring the girl who runs wild, the ardent karate girl, the big eater, the strange girl, and the blonde overseas student. Soft tennis is a popular game in East Asia, a form of tennis played with a soft, nerf-like ball.

Director Kamitsubo Ryouki did Hidamari Sketch and the Hen Zemi OVA. Cast includes several big names, including Itou Kanae, Kitamura Eri, Itou Shizuka, Akesaka Satomi, Yahagi Sayuri, and Sawashiro Miyuki. Another show with possibilities. If the trailer is any indication, pantsu-shots will be one of the show's main features.

seiyuus: Itou Kanae, Kitamura Eri, Itou Shizuka, Akesaka Satomi, Yahagi Sayuri, Matsumoto Shinobu, Sawashiro Miyuki.
director: Kamitsubo Ryouki (Hidamari Sketch, Hen Zemi OVA)
writer: Aduchi Ryou (manga).
animation: XEBEC. chara-des: Ouka Yuichi (Over Drive, To Love-Ru).
OP Ultra-Prism.
thu 07 apr 25:30 trailer.


A Channel
  (jp: Aチャンネル)   jpWiki

slice-of-life absurd comedy
A non-stop series of jokes emerges from the everyday life of four high school girls: flighty Run (Fukuhara Kaori), reckless Tooru (Yuuki Aoi), timid Yuuko (Kotobuki Minako), and level-headed Nagi (Uchiyama Yumi).

I found the warped humor of the manga enjoyable, and I think Ao-chan is perfect for aggressive little Tooru.

The director and writer of Saki team up again. Music by Kousaki Satoru (Haruhi, OreImo) of MONACA.

seiyuus: Fukuhara Kaori, Yuuki Aoi, Kotobuki Minako, Uchiyama Yumi (bit parts in Gosick, Ika Musume).
director: Ono Manabu (Saki)
writer: Urahata Tatsuhiko (Ichigo 100%, Saki). Kuroda BB.
animation: Studio Gokumi.
music: Kousaki Satoru (Haruhi, OreImo), MONACA. OP Kawano Marina.
thu 07 apr 25:40 trailer. manga.


Denpa Onna to Seishun Otoko
  (jp: 電波女と青春男)   jpWiki

loli absurd comedy
The brilliantly odd loli-focussed original is perfect for Shinbou. The story involves a high-school boy living with his aunt's family while his parents are away. His cute cousin had been missing for half a year and was found floating in the sea. She doesn't remember anything about what happened, but now proclaims herself an alien and goes around wrapped in a futon (!).

Shinbou has two new collaborators: writer Ayana Yuniko wrote episodes of Aoi Hana and Occult Academy. Character designer Nishida Asako is a famous animator who did original character design for Simoun, and anime character design for Fate/Stay Night and Touka Gettan. Her designs for this show are typically moe. The original novel illustrations are by Buriki.

Nice cast includes Katou Emiri and Irino Miyu, and may be the launching pad for the career of Oogame Asuka, who is so cute and charming (and short) in person that it seems a waste that she is not in more shows.

seiyuus: Oogame Asuka (Lizleat/Omamori, Daidalos/Sora no Otoshimono), Irino Miyu, Katou Emiri, Fuchigami Mai (Kaname/Ookamikakushi), Nonaka Ai.
director: Shinbou Akiyuki
writer: Ayana Yuniko (eps of Aoi Hana, Occult Academy). Iruma Hitoma (novel).
animation: Shaft. chara-des: Nishida Asako (Simoun); Buriki (orig).
OP Erio wo Kamatte-chan (Oogame Asuka).
thu 07 apr 25:55 trailer. manga.


Dororon Enma-kun Meeramera
  (jp: Dororonえん魔くん メ~ラめら)   jpWiki

supernatural shounen comedy
Enma-kun, the nephew of the King of Hell, comes from hell to quell monsters roaming the lower city of Tokyo in the 1970s. From a famous comic by Go Nagai that began serialization in 1973.

Director/writer Yonetani Yoshitomo did the inventive lolis-in-space 3D OVA series Amuri in Star Ocean.

Lots of interesting names among the seiyuus: Yamaguchi Kappei, Noto Mamiko, Koyasu Takehito, Kawasumi Ayako (where has she been?), Shishido Rumi, Inoue Kikuko, Wakamoto Norio.

seiyuus: Yamaguchi Kappei, Noto Mamiko, Koyasu Takehito, Inaba Minoru, Kawasumi Ayako, Shishido Rumi, Nakamura, Itou Maiko, Inoue Kikuko, Wakamoto Norio.
director: Yonetani Yoshitomo (Amuri in Star Ocean)
writer: Yonetani Yoshitomo. Nagai Go (Mazinger, Cutie Honey, Demon Prince Enma).
animation: Brains Base. chara-des: Kimura Takahiro (Code Geass). animation supervisor: Kimura Takahiro. art: Nakamura Takashi.
OP Endou Masaaki and moonriders, ED moonriders, feat. Yoko.
thu 07 apr 26:10 trailer. manga.


MariaHolic Alive
  (jp: まりあ†ほりっく あらいぶ)   jpWiki

gender-bender school comedy
A second season for Shinbou's gender-bender comedy, in which a girl goes to an all-girls school in order to get away from boys, then finds that her roommate is a boy in disguise.

Excellent cast, great director, but I didn't find season one that interesting, myself. This time around, however, Shinbou has recruited as his co-director Tokoro Tomokazu, the director of Haibane Renmei and NieA_7. For that alone, I will give this show a look.

As for the cast, I am always glad to listen to Kobayashi Yuu, Inoue Marina, Kaida Yuuko, Hirano Aya, Sawashiro Miyuki, and Matsuki Miyu. One of Gotou Saori's five roles this season is in this show, too.

seiyuus: Sanada Asami, Kobayashi Yuu, Inoue Marina, Kaida Yuuko, Shintani Ryouko, Kanda Akemi, Gotou Saori, Hirano Aya, Sawashiro Miyuki, Matsuki Miyu.
director: Shinbou Akiyuki, Tokoro Tomokazu
writer: Yokotani Masahiro (MariaHolic, Reideen). Endou Minari (manga).
animation: Shaft. chara-des: Morioka Hideyuki (Ma)riaoHolic, Zetsubou sensei. animation supervisor: Yamauchi Noriyasu.
OP Kobayashi Yuu.
thu 07 apr 26:15 trailer. manga.


Sekai-ichi Hatsukoi
  (jp: 世界一初恋)   jpWiki

yaoi comedy-drama
Onodera Ritsu has just transferred from his father's publishing company to Marukawa Shoten. Assigned to the shoujo manga division, he discovers that the editor-in-chief is his old high-school love, who rejected him when he confessed. But this man suddenly kisses him! What is going on, and where will it lead?

I like both the staff and the cast here. Kon Chiaki directed Nodame Paris and Finale, and Otome Youkai Zakuro. Nakase Rika wrote some shows that I consider underappreciated: Kanamemo and Rocket Girls, in particular, as well as Junjou Romantica.

The cast is a who's who. Kondou Takeshi may finally be gaining the respect he deserves.

seiyuus: Kondou Takeshi, Konishi Katsuyuki, Tachibana Shinnosuke, Nakamura Yuuichi, Horiuchi Kenyuu, Kamiya Hiroshi, Okamoto Nobuhiko, Midorikawa Hikaru, Morikawa Toshiyuki.
director: Kon Chiaki (Higurashi, Nodame Finale, Zakuro)
writer: Nakase Rika (Rocket Girls, Junjou Romantica, Kanamemo).
animation: Studio Deen.
OP Kita Shuuhei, ED wakaba.
fri 08 apr 25:05 manga. 12eps.


Ao no Exorcist
  (jp: 青の祓魔師)   jpWiki

supernatural adventure drama
Okamura Tensai (Wolf's Rain, Darker than Black) returns to animate the popular "Blue Exorcist" manga. The demon world and the human world are like two sides of a mirror. Ordinarily, contact between the two is impossible.

However demons can pass over into this world by possessing something within it. Satan is the god of demons, but there is nothing in the human world powerful enough to contain him. So he creates a son by a human woman. But will his son agree to his plans? Or will he become an exorcist?

Strong cast stars the excellent 24-year-old seiyuu Okamoto Nobuhiko (Yumeji in Yumekui Merry, Accelerator in Index, seiyuu award for best supporting actor), along with Fukuyama Jun, Hanazawa Kana, Yusa Kouji and Nakai Kazuya.

seiyuus: Okamoto Nobuhiko, Fukuyama Jun, Hanazawa Kana, Nakai Kazuya, Yusa Kouji.
director: Okamura Tensai (Wolf's Rain, Darker Than Black)
writer: Yamaguchi Ryouta (Sailor Moon Sailor Stars, Kita-e). Katou Kazue (manga).
animation: A-1 Pictures.
music: Sawano Hiroyuki (Gigantic Formula, GundamUC). OP UVERworld, ED 2PM.
sun 10 apr 17:00 trailer. manga.


Ring ni Kakero 1 - Sekai Daikai Hen
  (jp: リングにかけろ1 世界大会編)   jpWiki

shounen sports
After defeating Black Shaft's makeshift Team USA and proving their worth to the Shadow Clan, Team Golden Japan Jr. will finally enter the World Junior Boxing Tournament. In order to fulfill their goal of a perfect victory they'll have to take on teams from countries like Mexico, Italy, France, Germany, and the mysterious and godlike Team Greece. (ann)

This doesn’t interest me much, but the cast and staff suggest that it will be a good show. The director is new, but did episodes of shows like Seitokai Yakuindomo and Saki. The writer is one of the top hands, having written Ookiku Furikabutte and Requiem for the Phantom.

seiyuus: Morita Masakazu, Tanaka Rie, Okiayu Ryoutarou, Kusao Takeshi, Ishikawa Hideo, Kamiya Hiroshi, Kuroda Takaya, Morikawa Toshiyuki, Midorikawa Hikaru, Miki Shinichirou.
director: Ikehata Hiroshi (new, eps of Saki, SeiYaku, etc.)
writer: Kuroda Yousuke (Honey and Clover2, Big Windup, Phantom Requiem, Gundam00). Kurumada Masami.
animation: Toei.
music: Ueda Susumu.
sun 10 apr 21:00


Astarotte no Omocha!
  (jp: アスタロッテのおもちゃ!)   jpWiki

loli romantic comedy
In the fantasy world of Alfheimr, succubus princess Astarotte has just reached the age of 10, and must now acquire her first male harem. The princess, however, hates men, and only agrees to create a harem on the impossible premise that a human male be part of it.

A fine cast stars Kugimiya Rie as another version of her trademark tsundere loli role. She is supported by more top names, including Satou Rina, Tamura Yukari, Nabatame Hitomi, Fujimura Ayumi, and Horie Yui.

I've enjoyed a bit of the manga (Lotte no Omocha), and I like the cast. My only question is whether the staff can make the show sing: director Oizaki Fumitoshi did the forgettable RomeoxJuliet, and writer Akao Deko did a couple of Shaft franchises I'm not that fond of: Natsu no Arashi and Arakawa Bridge.

But it will be interesting to see what well-known illustrator okama does as visual designer.  The trailer has an attractive look. And Shinbou himself is credited for "series composition cooperation."

seiyuus: Kugimiya Rie, Satou Rina, Tamura Yukari, Nabatame Hitomi, Fujimura Ayumi, Horie Yui, Suzuki Misaki, Chou, Minaguchi Yuuko (Sailor Saturn, Videl/DragonballZ, Tsukimi's mother/Kuragehime).
director: Oizaki Fumitoshi (RomeoxJuliet, Ontama)
writer: Akao Deko (Arakawa Bridge). Haga Yui (manga). series composition cooperation: Shinbou Akiyuki.
animation: Diomedea. chara-des: Otsuka Mai. art: okama (visual design).
OP Aimi, ED azusa.
sun 10 apr 23:30


Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal
  (jp: 遊☆戯☆王ゼアル)

shounen fighting
More duels as the Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise sails on.

seiyuus: Hatanaka Tasuku, Irino Miyu, Masuda Toshiki, Komatsu Mikako, Shimada Makoto, Miyahara Nami, Tani Ikuni.
director: Kuwahara Satoshi (Astro Boy movie 2001)
writer: Yoshida Shin (Yu-Gi-Oh!, Karas). Takahashi Kazuki (orig).
animation: Gallop. chara-des: Takaya Hirotoshi; Takahashi Kazuki (orig).
music: Conisch.
mon 11 apr 19:30 trailer. manga.


The World God Only Knows II
  (jp: 神のみぞ知るセカイII)   jpWiki


Katsuragi Keima, a second-year high school student, is an avid dating sim gamer. He is known on the Internet as The Capturing God: he can get any 2D girl. However, in his actual school life, Keima is considered a four-eyed dweeb.

In the first series Keima managed to capture the hearts of four girls. But his quest has only just begun. Suddenly a beautiful girl chasing a spirit appears before him. She is Haqua, Elsea's friend and an outstanding student back in hell who was promoted to the rank of a district chief. However, it seems that she is hiding something. And once again Keima has to become a god. The target this time -- a demon. (from anidb)

I quickly lost interest in this show -- except for Mio (Yuuki Aoi). Now another favorite of mine, Hayami Saori, who co-stars as Hakua in the new series, will bring me back for another look.

seiyuus: Itou Kanae, Shimono Hiro, Hayami Saori.
director: Takayanagi Shigehito (Galaxy Angel A, S, X; Kanamemo)
writer: Kurata Hideyuki (Now and Then, Here and There; Kannagi; OreImo).
animation: Manglobe.
music: Mitsuo Hayato.
mon 11 apr 25:30 trailer. manga.


Seikon no Qwaser II
  (jp: 聖痕のクェイサーII)   jpWiki

ecchi supernatural adventure drama
All I can say is that if you liked the first series, you will probably like this one. We have the same staff and cast -- with the addition of Nanjou Yoshino, who is both the singer for fripSide, and a decent seiyuu, too.

Overall, the cast is just excellent, and helps one overcome the fact that the story is based on people with superpowers who use the secretions of women's breasts to power up. There is plenty of violence against women here, but also plenty of violence by women, so I guess it all works out.

seiyuus: Sanpei Yuuko, Hikasa Youko, Nanjou Yoshino, Sakurai Harumi, Subaru Yuiko, Fujimura Ayumi, Toyosaki Aki, Hirano Aya, Kawasumi Ayako, Hanazawa Kana.
director: Kaneko Hiraku (Seikon 1)
writer: Uezu Makoto (Seikon, Katanagatari, Zombie Desuka, School Days).
animation: Hoods Entertainment.
OP Faylan, ED Shoujobyou.
mon 11 apr 26:30 trailer. manga.


Yuruani?
  (jp: ユルアニ?)   jpWiki

anime shorts
Five anime shorts to be shown on 12 April on NTV.


director: various

animation: DLE.
tue 12 apr 25:29








C - The Money of Soul and Possibility Control
  (jp: [ C ] The Money of Soul and Possibility Control)

dystopic finance drama
A new anime from the director of Mononoke and the writer of Durarara. Another must-see show for the Thursday-night noitaminA timeslot.

In the story, the Japanese government has been rescued from financial collapse, but its people continue to face unemployment, crime, suicide, and despair. Kimimaro is a struggling scholarship student whose only dream is to live a peaceful and stable life. One day, however, he meets a man who offers him a large sum of money on the simple condition that he agree to pay it back. From then on his fate is radically altered, as he is drawn into the mysterious Financial District. (from ann)

seiyuus: Uchiyama Kouki, Tomatsu Haruka, Hosomi Daisuke, Gotou Saori, Sakurai Takahiro, Makino Yui, Mitsuya Yuuji, Asano Mayumi.
director: Nakamura Kenji (Mononoke, Kuchuu Buranko)
writer: Takagi Noboru (Koi Kaze, Baccano, Durarara).
animation: Tatsunoko. chara-des: Hashimoto Takashi (Kuchuu Buranko, Mononoke); mebae (orig).
music: Iwasaki Taku (Gurren Lagann, Katanagatari). OP NICO Touches the Walls.
thu 14 apr 24:45 trailer.


Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai
  (jp: あの日見た花の名前を僕達はまだ知らない)   jpWiki

comedy drama
An original story, directed by Nagai Tatsuyuki (Railgun, Honey and Clover 2), and scripted by Okada Mari (true tears, Gosick, etc.).

Six childhood friends grew apart in high school. One of them is Jintan, now a hikikomori, almost never leaving his room. He gets a request to fulfill a wish for Menma, the only one of the friends to have stayed the same over the years. In order to grant her wish, he will have to find and reunite the old gang. (from ann)

The trailer looks nice, but the voice of Kayano Ai as the lead doesn't do much for me there. We shall see. The staff is promising, and the rest of the cast is excellent.

seiyuus: Irino Miyu, Kayano Ai (Itsuwa/Index2, Isana/Yumekui Merry), Tomatsu Haruka, Sakurai Takahiro, Hayami Saori, Kondou Takayuki (Oishi Shuuichirou/Prince Tennis, Hanadate/Zakuro).
director: Nagai Tatsuyuki (Honey-Clover2, Railgun)
writer: Okada Mari (true tears, Canaan, Bantorra, Gosick, Fractale, etc.).
animation: A-1 Pictures.
music: Remedios.
thu 14 apr 25:15 trailer.


Deadman Wonderland
  (jp: デッドマン・ワンダーランド)   jpWiki

shounen sci-fi adventure
A few years after a great earthquake has sunk most of Tokyo, Ganta Igarashi is convicted for murders he hasn't committed and sent to a brutal new prison where the inmates are the main attraction in a new version of the gladiatorial shows of ancient times. A weird young girl, new-found super powers, and a deep conspiracy make this a show with possibilities.

Paku Romi and Hanazawa Kana head an excellent cast. This is the director's first directoral job. The writer did Persona and Basara. From a manga by the author of Eureka Seven. The bit of the manga I've read was excellent, with a bit of Kafka about it.

seiyuus: Paku Romi, Hanazawa Kana, Katou, Kaji Yuki, Nomizu Iori, Honda Takako, Suwabe Junichi.
director: Hatsumi Koichi (new, work on DTB2, Real Drive, Kikaider, etc.)
writer: Muto Yasuyuki (Sengoku Basara, Persona, etc.). Kataoka Jinsei, Kazuma Kondou (both manga, Eureka Seven).
animation: Manglobe. chara-des: Yamada Masaki (Basara).
music: Narasaki. OP fade, ED Nirgilis.
sat 16 apr 25:00 manga. 12eps.


Fujilog
  (jp: フジログ)

painfully realistic absurd comedy
The hapless life of unemployed 33-year-old Fujiyama Osamu, of Saitama, outside Tokyo. The trailers are hilarious. Family humor or adult humor? Maybe a bit of both.

The director has done Anpanman shows. The writer did Lodoss War.

seiyuus: KusaoTakeshi (Trunks/Dragonball, Parn/Lodoss), Ohtsuda Hiromi, Sakuma Natsumo, Shiratori Tetsu.
director: Nagaoka Akinori (Anpanman)
writer: Watanabe Mami (Lodoss War).

OP/ED Sherry.
april trailer.


Appleseed XIII
  (jp: アップルシード XIII)   jpWiki

science fiction adventure
A retelling of the story from the popular 3DCG films involving humans and engineered clones in a future world.

The new TV version is written by the writer of Blood+ and Beast Player Erin, and directed by the director of Prince of Tennis and Library War. If you aren't put off by 3DCG animation, this could be well worth a look. Especially with the announcement that it will star Sakamoto Maaya and Yamadera Kouichi.

seiyuus: Sakamoto Maaya, Yamadera Kouichi.
director: Hamana Takayuki (Prince of Tennis, Library War, Beast Player Erin, Moshidora)
writer: Fujisaku Jun'ichi (Blood+, Beast Player Erin, Moshidora). Shirow Masamune.
animation: Jinni's Animation Studio. chara-des: Gotou Takayuki. animation supervisor: mecha: Takeuchi Atsushi.
mon 13 jun streaming, plus theatrical showing. manga. 13eps.

19 comments:

Andrew said...

The number of shows on tap for spring is quite impressive considering the earthquake. I thought most spring shows would be delayed until the summer season this year. (I would've thought the network might postpone the dystopian financial drama, since people might consider it too "prophetic", though I hope not.)

Isn't Minori Chihara in Qwaser too?

hashi said...

@Andrew -- I think some delays may be possible, but perhaps it's too early to say. If we get back to normal schedules in April -- as we apparently will with some shows and already have with others -- then the new season need not be delayed.

I will publish a weekly schedule closer to April 1, when more of this has been worked out.

Minorin is not listed on the cast page of the new Qwaser series.

Anonymous said...

Great preview, but I don't know why do you think that Kaiji is a comedy... it's more like a gambling drama <.<

hashi said...

@anonymous -- And that may be why I never liked the original: I couldn't take it seriously. That was perhaps partly because of the character design, and partly because I hate gambling. You're right, though. I thought I had said "comedy-drama." I'll change that. Thanks.

trzr23 said...

Wow, that must've been hard work.

Thanks for all the info, was looking for it to make my preview post :)

hashi said...

@trzr23 -- Thanks. It *was* a lot of work. Every time I do it, I think: never again. But then I want to know all that info myself, and end up doing it anyway.

Anonymous said...

Thank you once again for compiling this again! It's super helpful, especially with the background on directors/writers previous shows.

Looks like a quality season, though I have to say nothing stands out quite like Madoka did. Even so, I'll be plenty happy if even half of the shows that interest me turn out to be good. Only problem now is finding the time to watch them all!

hashi said...

I just saw Divine's season preview over at Random Curiosity. Well worth a look. He has some good info over there that I don't (and vice-versa, lol). Together, I think we give you a good idea of what's coming.

Peanutbutter003 said...

Godly animation for Nichijou? Eh?!?

hashi said...

@Peanutbutter003 -- I'm thinking specifically of the scene in the OVA where the girl rolls from her desk and fetches up against the back wall of the classroom. The detailed way her body moves -- i.e., the actual animation -- is some of the best I can remember seeing. Getting those rhythms right is pretty hard, it seems to me.

marinasauce said...

Sheesh, I agree, this certainly looks like it took a lot of time and work to bring together on a single post, and I commend you for your attention to detail providing links and discussion on them all. Like Andrew, I too was expecting many of these shows to have delays because of the earthquake, but I do look forward to seeing your update when we get closer to April 1.

Of all the shows, I'm looking forward to C, Showa Monogatari, and Deadman Wonderland the most. I d/l ep. 0 of Nichijou, but have yet to watch it. Thanks to you, I think I'll check it out now :)

Anonymous said...

Serious production issues are expected, at least over the next few weeks (?). Since most animation studios are based in the Tokyo region (where they're dealing with on-going power and transportation issues), there's some fear that the studios will be in a rush to outsource loads of work overseas just to get things done.

The initial episodes should be finished already, so those probably won't be affected. However, where the quality of future episodes is concerned, all bets are off.

It's a shame that so many high profile projects are debuting this season. Nevertheless, with the problems going on in Japan, the state of anime is hardly important.

Shirt said...

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Making a season preview is a lot of work. To see one with information that even Divine doesn't have is amazing. I greatly appreciate it. As you said a few comments up, [along with Divine's Season Preview] it really does give you the loop about everything that's to come.

I forgot Maria Holic existed until a few weeks ago. I marathoned the first season and (the majority of) it was great. I enjoyed it mostly for Kobayashi Yuu. I love her voice acting. After seeing what you said about the director from Haibane Renmei stepping in (awesome), I'm looking forward to the second season.

Yi said...

Hanasaku Iroha's trailer is indeed gorgeous. I wasn't really planning on watching anything other than Steins;Gate and Exorcist, but I've decided to add Hanasaku Iroha to my list. It's good to see Itou Kanae too.

Anonymous said...

Ikoku Meiro no Croisée

cast:

Yune : Nao Tōyama
Claude : Takashi Kondo
Alice : AOI YŪKI
Camille : Sayuri Yahagi
Oscar : Hideyuki Tanaka

KamiyaCheap said...

My most anticipated is Kami Nomi... Had beed it's Manga fan and see how good is season 2... compare to season 1 now that Haqua(Hayami XD) is here.

Second will be Dog Days Really like to c how Ayanyan work with Nana-sama and Hocchan! XD

hashi said...

SEASON SCHEDULE
What with one thing and another (travel, illness, work) I haven't yet got a revised schedule ready. But Divine has, so here's his. Some shows delayed, others not.

Yuki Tsukishiro said...

I really want to watch C!
Can see Uchiyama feat Tomatsu again...
:3

hashi said...

Here's my season schedule.