Summer 2015 Season Preview

What, you guys want MORE anime? There’s plenty of good anime still sitting there on your table! There’s Euphonium and Oregairu and BBB, and I hear people over on twitter are even watching Legend of the Galactic Heroes! There’s good shows from the last few years and good shows from before Ghibli was even a thing, and you’re here complaining that you need something new? Typical. Just friggin’ typical. You know, this is the problem with anime fans these days – the second you have something good, it’s already old news. There’s no pleasing you!

Well, I for one have had enough, and in light of my disgust with your attitude, I’ve been talking with the heads of anime, and they’ve all agreed. You guys don’t deserve more anime, and so this summer, you’re going to have to survive on like 2.5 new shows worth watching. We’ll see how much you clamor for new toys when the season lineup is Gatchaman Crowds and then Six Days Without Gatchaman Crowds. Have fun.

Alright, let’s run down what shows seem at least moderately tolerable. And remember, this is on you.

(also, as always, you can check out the full list at anichart, where you can also get synopses if you want them. I’m just going to be running down why I’m compelled to highlight any of these shows)

Gatchaman Crowds Insight

Gatchaman Crowds Insight

This one’s the big and possibly only clear bet of the summer. Gatchaman Crowds was a dense, passionate, and endlessly fun bounty of a show, and with the director, series composer, and music composer all returning for the sequel, this promises to be a fine return to questions of culture and heroism in the digital age. If you haven’t seen the original, I highly recommend catching up, and if you have seen it, I hope you’re as excited as I am to have Hajime once again brightening these dark times. GATCHAMAAAAAAN.

No PV yet, so just watch the S1 OP again goddamnit.

Akagami no Shirayuki-hime

Akagami no Shirayuki-hime

I don’t have any direct experience with this one, but the buzz seems to be flowing in the right direction – the premise seems compelling enough, I’ve heard positive things about the source material, and Bones handling a shoujo drama seems like a nice combo. I’m always up for a good fantasy-romance, and shoujos on the whole just tend to be better-written than their boy-adventure counterparts, so while I don’t have expectations, I’d be happy to see this one impress.

Here’s a PV, with animation and everything!

And with that, we reach the end of the shows I’m actually looking forward to. Coming up: entirely speculative picks! Hurray!



Eh. Honestly not that enthusiastic about this one, but it at least seems to have an aesthetic that sets it apart from most shows. The PV didn’t really impress me (it’s mostly just shots from one specific street fight in the first episode, apparently), but in a season where I’m already scraping the bottom of the barrel, “vaguely Black Lagoon-esque mobster thing” seems like it’s worth a shot?

Classroom Crisis

Classroom Crisis

This one’s a bit of a long shot, but they’re all long shots here. The director isn’t really noteworthy, but the series composer is the dude behind White Album 2 and, well, Saekano. I found Saekano to be hot trash, but both of those works at least demonstrated a writer who has some idea of how to write. Additionally, the way the premise is framed makes me think this will be a fairly grounded story within a larger speculative fiction world, which seems like a nice idea. It seems worth an episode, at least.

Here’s that image above sliding in and framed in a star. Whoa!

God Eater

God Eater

I don’t really expect this to be good (it’s based on a videogame, for chrissake), but this one’s coming courtesy of ufotable, so it should hopefully at least be pretty. After the endless, meaningless talk-fests of Unlimited Blade Works, I’m hoping a silly action show will let the studio finally stretch their production muscles. There were some real highlights in UBW, they were just scattered between long, punishing monologues. Hopefully God Eater significantly adjusts the monologues-to-face-punching ratio.

Here’s a PV, showing off the kinda interestingly textured aesthetic.

Ranpo Kidan: Game of Laplace

Game of Laplace

So, we’ve got a noitaminA show based on an apparently renowned story… buuut it’s being directing by Seiji Kishi, he of lukewarm adaptations and low expectations. It’s a coin toss, and it’s not like the noitaminA “brand” really means all that much at the moment, but hope springs eternal, and good source material is close to the number one indicator of reasonable anime. We’ll see!

Here’s the semi-useless PV.

Rokka no Yuusha

Rokka no Yuusha

Here’s another one I don’t really have any expectations for – the director’s the dude who handled Spice and Wolf and Maoyuu, but the plot is way more standard, and the series composers’ main highlights in a long career are… Monster and The Severing Crime Edge? So, there’s that. So far, the biggest thing setting this apart might be the faux-Mayan aesthetic of the PV. I doubt I’ll follow this, but it seems like it could not be bad, so.

Ushio to Tora

Ushio to Tora

Like many shows on this list, I only have the barest of reasons to have any hope for this show. In this case, it’s because I still consider MAPPA a studio worth watching – I’ve either enjoyed or at least respected almost everything they’ve been involved with, and though this one’s actually based on a manga from 1990-1996 (likely implying another Parasyte-style tie-in situation), I’ll still give it a shot. It’s a thin hope (and I’m well aware pinning hopes on studios instead of creators is a bad idea), but hope must survive!

Here’s the thrilling PV.



This one’s at Madhouse, but in this case, that’s looking more like a trap than anything. The premise is bog-standard “trapped in an MMO” fare (and even though I am now apparently the authority on MMO anime, I can’t say that really excites me), the director is responsible for a grab-bag of episodes that are mainly situated over at Toei (thanks to @yuyucow and @ultimatemegax for offering lovely samples of his work), and the writer has basically just worked on SAO and Mahouka.

I don’t even know why I’m talking about this. Why am I talking about this? Let’s go to the next show.

Chaos Dragon: Sekiryuu Senyaku

Chaos Dragon

Yeaaah, it’s the silly D&D adventure thing! Urobuchi as a big-boobed assassin, Nasu as a blond-haired knight, and a bunch of other names I’m far less familiar with as the actual main characters! I’m pretty much expecting this to be terrible, but any show that offers a chance for me to shout, “great work, Urobuchi and Nasu. NOW KISS” is going to get at least one episode from me. Fun times.

Here’s a PV, if you want that for some reason.

Prison School

Prison School

Prison School is the very trashiest of trash, and I actually originally had this next to Charlotte down in my “if you have completely different sensibilities from me, maybe you’ll enjoy this” section, but then they announced friggin’ Mizushima as the director, who you may recognize from both directing Shirobako to legendary status and somehow turning premises like Girls und Panzer and Witch Craft Works into really solid shows. The dude has the magic touch, which means I’ll check this out, but I can’t imagine even him turning Prison School into something I want to watch week to week. I guess we’ll see.

Here’s the extremely telling PV.

And that’s it! That’s pretty much all that looks even potentially enjoyable to me. For other tastes, you might possibly check out Charlotte, which is P.A. Works having their talents squandered on some Jun Maeda nonsense. As for me, I’m just desperately hoping some unexpected highlights emerge. I’d be happy just watching backlog, but the preview guide is a harsh mistress.

46 thoughts on “Summer 2015 Season Preview

  1. Next season is looking pretty dire indeed. Our lists are pretty much similar except I’ll actually try some Charlotte (Maeda just hid his talent the whole time and comes back with fresh blood…. right?…).
    I absolutely have to catch up on Gatchaman Crowds it seems. Probably not going to have enough time to also catch up on DRRR, but it seems kind of necessary to have atleast almost a handful of enjoyable shows.
    And damn, those Prison School character designs look way too silly…

    • Yeah, Gatchaman’s well worth catching up on – not only is it good, but it’s just all that’s holding this season together.

  2. Jeez this season looks so poor.. Gatchaman seems like it’d be the only interesting thing. I’ll also try the Mappa show since everything theve done so far was good enough, would probably have continued to watch Garo if its season would have been poorer.

    Really curious about prison school. The only redeeming factor was the amazing art for the manga, so with that in less I wonder how Mizushima can make it interesting. The weird jojo style preview didn’t inspire me any confidence.

    • Mizushima’s good enough that I’ll at least check it out, but I can’t imagine there’s any way to truly translate Prison School’s art, and the actual content… it seems likely it’ll just make me sad he isn’t working on Shirobako S2 instead.

  3. Yeah, I pretty much still thinks that this season looks bad, so much that it baffled me that someone thinks it is looking better than the previous season. But well, taste and all that.

    I’ll probably be checking all the shows’ first three episodes as usual, but so far, the only ones that looks like I’m going to be following is God Eater, Chaos Dragon, and Ushio to Tora. I just hope that the first two won’t be as bad as F/sn and Akame ga Kill (of which Chaos Dragon is reminding me of, along with Tokyo Raven a bit from the aesthetics). The last one I actually read a bit of its manga way back in elementary school, and it seemed pretty decent, reminding me of Yu Yu Hakusho’s first arcs. Not sure if the nostalgia will hold.

    The rest, I’m pretty much expecting them to be trash, and has adjusted myself accordingly. Gate and Overlord especially, though I’m looking forward to how much a trainwreck Gakkou Gurashi would be. Classroom Crisis… it’s just weird, pretty much every synopsis I’ve seen it had was just so damn badly written. I’m not sure about your first three (Gatchaman Crowds more because I haven’t watched the first season of) but I suppose we’ll just have to take the wait and see position to all of them. Other than those on the list, I seem to be seeing a lot of fanservice trash next season.

    I guess it’s time to use that image again, huh? That “There is a lot of anime aimed at moe pigs this season,” image, I mean.

    • I think whether a season is totally awesome or the worst ever often comes down to whether you personally like one or two specific shows – for me at least, the difference between having one show I really like and three shows I really like is pretty massive, so I’m not surprised there are varied opinions on whether a given season is great or empty.

      • Man, 2013. Counting only shows I watched as they aired and not later, rated 8 and higher:

        Spring: Railgun S2, OreImo S2, not a lot, but a good start.
        Summer: Uchouten Kazoku, TWGOK S3, Gin no Saji S1, Genshiken Nidaime, Gatchaman Crowds, Railgun S2’s second half.
        Fall: Samurai Flamenco, Kyousougiga, Kill la Kill’s first half (which was good enough).

        From the time 2013 ended, Winter 2015 is the only season to reach 3 8+ in a single season, with Shirobako’s second half, Junketsu no Maria, and Death Parade.

        How I feel about a season though seems to rely a lot on the “middle of the pack”. If they’re all 7-7.5, I feel good. If most shows end up under 7, or closer to 6, I feel disappointed, even with 1-2 greats. Spring 2014, which now when I look at it also had 3 8+s with Ping Pong, Mushishi Zoku Shou, and Gin no Saji S2, was good regardless, most of the middle of the pack, even when frustrating and uneven were usually fun. Or had moments of greatness. That was a pretty good season too, when your “weak” shows are No Game, No Life, Isshuukan Friends, Sidonia, and Chuunibyou Ren, you could do worse.

        I wonder though, would I prefer 2-3 greats and watching 10 6s, or no greats, but everything being 7.5? Hm. Of course, the less shows you watch, the more 1-2 greats matters, but for people who watch 20 shows per season to completion, I feel it’s much more about the average than it is about the gems.

  4. But you didn’t watch Dungeon Pick-up! MMO anime cred revoked.

    Holy shit what is even happening with those two Prison School characters.

    • Hey, Dungeon Pick-Up just exists in a world that happens to be an MMO, it isn’t specifically an MMO story. Disqualified!

  5. We’ll see how much you clamor for new toys when the season lineup is Gatchaman Crowds and then Six Days Without Gatchaman Crowds. Have fun.

    Surely you mean, “Gatchaman Crowds, and then a whole week to analyze everything the episode did,” right? 😀

    I mean, a whole week to scream “G-G-GATCHAMAAAAAAAAAAN!” Yes, I’m excited for its return.

    Classroom Crisis is my Rolling Girls/Plastic Memories pick for the season… wait, where are you going? I’m not done talking! Meaning, it’s the show with the highest potential, but also the most potential to end up as absolutely nothing. But hey, potential is already much better than most of those shows have going for them.

    God Eater

    As you said:

    (it’s based on a videogame, for chrissake)

    In my experience, the less of an actual plot the original video-game has, the better. If there’s a plot, it’s 90% going to be a crap anime. If there’s no plot, it’s only 70%. Hey, I have some hopes, for a respectable shounen, that I might check only after the show ends/based on word of mouth, because shounens like that are a dime a dozen, unfortunately.

    Rokka no Yuusha Everything about it screams that it’d be good, and the preview is gorgeous and actually reminds me of the Maoyu episode 1 visuals, but it sort of screams “Fantasy Light Novel Harem!” at me. Then again, I actually like some of those shows.

    Ushio no Tora is a really interesting situation, because it’s a 33 volume, 313 chapter manga. If we look at 2-3 chapters per episode to be a good pace, we’re still looking at over 100 episodes. Either this is going to be the new Hunter x Hunter (Or Katekayo Hitman Reborn), or… I really don’t know. Why is this even coming out? I bet there’ll be a movie announcement or something soon after the show starts, live action, just like Parasyte.

    Prison School. I sighed and said I’d check it out, but then the preview made it seem like 100% utter trash, in the Seiji Kishi directs Hamatora crossed with Danganronpa, only taking the worst parts of each, combined with all that is bad about anime “”comedy”” and what people berate shows such as Btooom! and Deadman Wonderland for, and I think regardless of how much people talk it up, I’ll chalk it under “Not For Me,” right next to anything that’s “Like Inferno Cop”.

    I might be old, but I’m just old enough to know what sort of stuff I dislike and just not watch it. And those of you who watch it, your taste’s trash, obviously.

    Other shows

    You should catch up on Durarara!!, the first 12 episodes should be great, even if you don’t watch further. I’ll likely watch Prisma Illya and hate myself for it, because last season was quite ungood.

    I still haven’t done an in-depth research into this season, in part because I’m busy with schoolwork and in part because so little seems interesting, but on first glance I might look into Gate as well, because LNs having a good premise and then running out of steam a-la Outbreak Company just once is not enough.

    Also, I know I was burnt by Koufuku Graffiti and KanColle (I didn’t dislike them, I was just mostly bored and it took me 1.5-2 hours per premier, cause it’s not for me), but Gakkou Gurashi!, the slice of life moe girls zombie show? I gotta check that out. The director of White Album 2, which for you might be an upside, but for me, ehhh.

    • True, less plot is often a boon for videogame adaptations – that at least gives the show an opportunity to tread its own course.

      And I kinda wish I could watch Durarara, but there’s waaay too much other stuff I gotta get done before summer. Should be having some longer posts up soon, actually…

      • You can do it with Durarara!! Though the pressure and time will probably do you no favours. I actually wonder how much you’ll like the first half of the first season. I’m very curious. It’s sort of atmospheric, sort of vignette…

        It’s not really what you’re looking for in shows per se, but it’s hard to find stuff to really compare it to. And it’s also in the weird spot that you could love the first half and dislike everything that follows and vice versa.

    • I still haven’t done an in-depth research into this season, in part because I’m busy with schoolwork and in part because so little seems interesting, but on first glance I might look into Gate as well, because LNs having a good premise and then running out of steam a-la Outbreak Company just once is not enough.

      I just hope that it would take more to the manga than the LN, because the LN went even further than the manga did with the military nationalism in the expositions (as if the basic plot didn’t already scream it) so much that the editor actually had to told the author to knock it off at some point in the serialization. The characterization… I heard it wasn’t all that great, and there was also a lot of harem shits within it too, pretty much the one good thing I heard about it is that there is this awesome helicopter vs dragon fight or something.

      Kind of similar with Overlord, from what I heard (that the one good thing about it was that the MC was a skeleton, though everything else except maybe the worldbuilding was shit).

      • Man, the only thing I know of Gate right now are the synopsis, but the more people describe it, the less it sounds worth my time.

        As far as nationalism in action manga goes, it sort of feels as if it’s par the course. I almost don’t see it anymore. I bet if I lived in that region of the world I’d feel different. But I guess it’s part of how issues of self-worth and power are often tied up with jingoism and militarism, and thus nationalism.

  6. Some of the folks over at Manga Bookshelf have really great things to say abut Gangsta so that one should be at the very least decent but yeesh, this whole year has been rather slim pickins for me so far and it doesn’t look like summer is going to change it.

    • We’re still paying for Fall 2014-Winter 2015.

      But hey, Fall 2015 is going to have more Diabolik Lovers! >.>

      Also Heavy Object, probably the single most highly recommended to me Light Novel series. Of course, Mahouka was the 2nd most highly recommended, so dunno what to tell you.

      Fall 2015 is still far off, but already not filling me with much faith. Then again, Shirobako and Shingeki no Bahamut: Genesis both exceeded my expectations, so who knows.

    • I just gotta cling to those couple shows each season that work for me! And also be thankful that JoJo got good again.

  7. Gangsta is more or less “condensed Black Lagoon with occasional reminders of X-Men,” so I’m hoping the direction and voice acting pull it through despite fears of it ending up focused on “shocking for shock’s sake.”

    And I know it won’t happen, but I really want Chaos Dragon to have random lapses for the out-of-character discussions and arguments that make D&D campaigns entertaining to observe irl.

  8. damn this season looks so bad….oh well, thats good news for the backlog I guess, maybe ill get around to watching Legend of the Galactic Heroes this summer……maybe

  9. Where else can I watch animes ? We have Netflix, but animes are not that many, and I think I’ve seen almost all the animes on Netflix. I’m waiting for second seasons of HunterxHunter, ( seen 100 episodes ) Attack on Titan, (28 ep. ) Sword ArtLine ( only up to Ant King episodes )

    • Crunchroll lets you watch English-subtitled shows about a week after they’ve aired in Japan, for free. They also have a pay service if you don’t want to wait a week. There’s also Funimation’s website, which streams some shows that Crunchyroll doesn’t license.

      For older shows, Nozomi Entertainment’s Youtube channel offers a lot of classics from the 1960s to the early 2000s, such as “Revolutionary Girl Utena”, “Astro Boy”, and “The Rose of Versailles.”

  10. It’s pretty hilarious how bad AniChart’s descriptions are for some of these shows. The summary of “Gakkou Gurashi” makes it sound like a slice-of-life manga. It’s about as slice-of-life as Nadeko Medusa.

    I don’t think the person who wrote the “Million Doll” description has even read a single chapter of the manga, or else they’d know that Itorio isn’t a person and that Ryu isn’t an idol. That’s stuff you learn in the first ten pages!

    …but, yeah, this Summer I’m basically just watching CROWDS and adaptations of manga about mentally ill women.

    • The Gakkou Gurashi one may have been intentional. It actually makes me sad that everywhere else is just spoiling it.

      • I suspect that this will be one of those initially under-appreciated shows like Madoka, which didn’t receive too much publicity until the third episode aired.

          • For some reason, I remember reading articles at the time about how online discussions and disc pre-orders dramatically increased after the third episode. Maybe I’m wrong, though.

          • Oh, I’m sure it became more popular after, but it’s not like Madoka was flying under the radar even before that. And disc orders after only 2 episodes aired probably isn’t indicative of much…

  11. Nothing for Non Non Biyori 2? First season was decent popcorn watching, I thought. D:

    I’m sort of excited to check out a couple shows, but I think ultimately that my summer simulcast season will be 1-2 shows and it’ll give me time to catch up on reading/watching my own physical backlog.

  12. Just as a point of reference, one of the other people in Chaos Dragon is Ryohgo Narita, the guy who wrote Baccano. So that should make things a bit more interesting to deal with.

  13. I never had much expectations of Prison School before I ended up reading the manga version. Turns out that comparing this to the miserable pile that is the Ecchi/genre is much like comparing Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure to the miserable pile that is rest of the Shounen action genre. The ridiculous detailed art coupled with it’s Rube Goldberge-ish approach to crafting elaborate jokes really does a lot for something that could otherwise have been the manga version of American Pie shudders. That said I’m not really all for this adaptation. Art-wise,they tried to copy the manga but it’s just not high enough quality/not detailed enough to really work so it looks off. Plus the manga artist’s signature shading-style is nowhere to be found. And of course censorship will gut the sexual content and undoubtedly the humor too as a result. However talented Mizushima and the voice cast are, there really fighting an uphill battle here. If they do pull things together then I suspect plenty of folks will find a great “guilty pleasure” in this one.

    As for the rest of the season, I don’t really have much to say besides I hope Gatchaman Crowds Insight can at least match the awesome madness of the 1st season’s OP. Durarara!! will probably continue to Durarara!!, which is fine as well I guess.

  14. The Prison School manga is actually a lot more well liked than you may think. In pretty much every forum I’m a part of the people on there really enjoy it. It’s also the only ecchi manga that can make me laugh. Having said that, I do realize it’s not for everyone, but it’s definitely not like your typical ecchi show, and I wouldn’t place it in the same category as most of the other ecchi anime you normally see. I also have a good bit of respect for the mangaka since he also did the series Me and the Devil Blues. Not sure if you’ve read that but it’s a more serious story and it’s really good.

    I will add that I am a bit worried about this anime adaptation though. While the director is good and the art looks nice, I still am skeptical on how well it’ll be animated and I don’t think it’s going to be uncensored which means some of the humor won’t have the same effect as it does in the manga. Guess we’ll see though.

    • Well, I guess your right about that. I’m thinking of watching it after I’m done with my current anime I’m watching.

  15. I think Summer’s going to involve a lot of coin flips. Most of the shows you listed here have the potential to be really good but they also could turn out to be boring and generic. We’ll have to see.

    As for Seji Kishi, I don’t like all of the shows he’s directed but the two original anime he got to work on (Angel Beats and Yuki Yuna is a Hero) are both fantastic. So the guy clearly has some talent but he’s not always the best at adapting thing. We’ll have to see. He’s doing a pretty good job with Assassination Classroom this season.

  16. I thought Mizushima was a group of women? Anyways, I have literally only the Durarara sequel to watch this summer, so I guess it’s as good a time as any to watch Princess Tutu

  17. Ouch. This season looks pretty painful ESPECIALLY compared to the current spring season. I really only have Gatchaman, Rokka no Yuusha, and Symphogear to look forward to. Hopefully the rest manage to surprise me. On the bright side even if everything else disappoints I fully expect Rokka to be my #1 of the season by a large margin as long as the anime is done decently. Mysteries are fun and it will be a good chance to go through and pick out all the hints.

  18. Yeah, this upcoming season is looking poor.
    I’m actually dreading Prison School but for very different reasons than most people here. I actually love the manga and I don’t think the anime will do it justice. It has a very unique humor to it, the some of the dialogue is the most insanely stupid and over the top stuff I’ve read. It’s not your run of the mill ecchi manga a la ‘To-Love Ru Darkness’ or the like.

  19. Yeah, i was expecting more interesting anime this season i found about 3-4 anime with my interest and curiosity. Genres i like are action, romance, school, and comedy. I’m really looking forward into SAO season 3. I have been hearing about prison school pretty often so i might as well check the manga before the anime. I won’t be watch any of these anime not until the next 3-4 months, because i want to have enough episodes to watch all at once instead waiting every week. I HATE that. Well i have about 2 anime shows I’m currently watching. i will be thinking about watching Gatchaman, tell me how good it is from a scale of 1-100

  20. I actually read Overlord and its content is… surprisingly decent? “Trapped in an MMO” is actually a lie. He rather gets transported to an alternate dimension which is vaguely similar to the game he plays, but otherwise is completely foreign to the MC. Typically, the most promising parts of this novel has been writing from the perspectives of characters native to the new world, and exploring their limitations, while the MC is like a force of nature who warps everything he comes in contact with. It’s a power fantasy done right in many ways, with how the MC is no longer human and the horror aspects that tag alone with being a Lord of Death.

    That being said, Overlord does have many failings, namely its tendency to incorporate stereotypical light novel qualities. I hope it will focus more on the horror, which it has handled quite well up until now. Madhouse is a suitable studio for this anime in that regard, but from the style alone, which I am sad to say appears far from the realistic grime this anime should be, it seems like the adaptation will be quite mediocre.

  21. Well … on the bright side, I would be fairly busy to watch shows, so I was kind of happy when I saw anichart and realized there was nothing appealing to me. While the two past seasons there were on the top of my head at least 3 series that were pretty good, this one announced nothing.

    But I have to catch up with Gatchaman I guess, and that will make one show for the season, which is probably better than nothing. Let’s hope there are some surprises among these shows.

    (Yeah I have some expectations for Akagami no Shirayuki-hime, but I try to forget about them since I tend to dislike shoujo in general. But then Bones is my favorite studio, so I will probably watch the show anyway.)

  22. I feel like you can gleam everything you need to know about Game of Laplace by looking at that promotional image. Chiefly, that friggin bubble butt. Pairing that with Seiji Kishi, makes me worry about the sense of humour it’s likely to have. Hopefully whatever’s good about the novels shines through.

    I also have a lot of hope for Classroom☆Crisis, but my speculative picks usually fall apart quite quickly 🙁

    Summer sure looks to be a uh.. season where anime is airing. Yeah.

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