Fall 2017 Season Preview

Holy crap everyone, it’s time for the season preview. Season previews are exciting to me even in the most mundane of times, and this is far from that. Personally, this summer season has been the least interesting batch of anime since I started watching seasonally (which was… three… five?… nevermind years ago). In contrast, the upcoming season is packed with returning favorites, unexpected revivals, intriguing adaptations, and promising anime originals. It would be very nearly impossible for this coming season to undercut my current 3.5 show roster, and it’s actually looking quite likely that I might have to sacrifice even some promising shows just for the sake of time. Summer may be ending, but a new anime dawn is approaching!

As usual, I won’t be running down every single upcoming show in this list. You can check a site like anichart if that’s what you’re looking for, and can also easily find all upcoming synopses there as well. What I will be focusing on are the shows I think are promising, along with laying out whatever reasons I might have for believing in them, be that solid source material or talented staff or just a great first season. Let’s start with my most anticipated prospects and run this season down!

Kino’s Journey: The Beautiful World

My reasoning for this one is pretty darn simple: the original Kino’s Journey is one of my favorite shows of all time, and given there was plenty more source material to adapt, this show has the firmest of adaptive bedrocks to start from. Sadly, the original season’s excellent director Ryutaro Nakamura (who also directed Serial Experiments Lain, among other things) has passed away, and I’m also not entirely sold on the season’s color palette and updated character designs, but Kino’s Journey is a strong enough property that I still have high hopes for this season. I never expected to get more Kino’s Journey, and I’m going to savor the experience.

You can check out the first PV here.

The Ancient Magus’ Bride

The Ancient Magus’ Bride’s situation is actually very similar to Kino’s Journey. The original Ancient Magus’ Bride manga is a beautiful, creative, and emotionally rich gem, but Norihiro Naganuma and Studio WIT’s execution of the existing OVA was fairly mediocre. A story like this demands the visual embellishment of an auteur like Rie Matsumoto, but even a conservative adaptation of Magus’ Bride should be a very fine time. The silver lining is that WIT seem to be treating this property as a marquee work, so the animation should hopefully hold up for a fair number of episodes. Magus’ Bride deserves a terrific adaptation, and I hope it at least gets a reasonable one.

You can check out the sizable PV here.

Love Live! Sunshine!! 2

Moving out of adaptation territory, I have pretty much every reason to expect Sunshine’s second season to be a fantastic time. The original Love Live’s second season was significantly stronger than its first, and really embraced the camp sensibilities that are the show’s greatest strength. Sunshine further refined these strengths into a satisfying mix of comedy and character drama, and given the show is no longer burdened by callbacks to the original or the necessity of assembling a team, Sunshine 2 could easily be the strongest Love Live yet. If you enjoy upbeat drama and snappy comedy, Sunshine is the place to be this fall.

You can check out the PV here.

March comes in like a lion 2nd Season

March is another extremely reliable pick, promising a satisfying continuation of one of last year’s most compelling dramas. Shaft have already demonstrated they can pull off a very solid interpretation of Chika Umino’s excellent manga, and the first season didn’t so much conclude as it stopped in the middle of the story. Even if it wasn’t always immediately gripping, March’s terrific cast and often beautiful execution always offered a rewarding experience. If you like stories about shogi, found families, or depression, March comes in like a lion offers a lot to love.

You can check out the PV here.

Girls’ Last Tour

Finally moving out of the guaranteed picks, we arrive at a show that impresses mostly through its intriguing premise and excellent art design. Girls’ Last Tour’s relatively untested director most relevant credit is his work as director of photography on Sora no Woto – not only does that show’s premise pretty much mirror this one, but the existing PV demonstrates this will almost certainly be a striking visual experience. The series composer has a much more solid catalog under his belt, but overall, this one’s riding heavily on that PV and the surrounding concept art. We’ll just have to see how it turns out.

You can check out that PV here.

12 Wars

This one I’m looking forward to entirely because of its original creator. 12 Wars Battle Royale premise and ridiculous PV didn’t really do anything for me, but Nisio Isin is one of my favorite writers in anime, and I’m excited to see what an anime-original production by him looks like. The show looks like insane hot garbage, but Isin-flavored hot garbage still sounds like a pretty good time.

You can check out that absurd PV here.


At last, it’s the boys’ turn. The original iDOLM@STER is a legitimate classic, and though Cinderella Girls couldn’t live up to its predecessor, it was still a very worthwhile show. Both of those shows rode heavily on the talents of their animation staff though, so Side M’s fortunes are still an open question. If it can match the aesthetic beauty of its predecessors, it could seriously contend with Love Live for idol show of the season.

You can check out the PV here.

Garo: Vanishing Line

I frankly don’t have particularly high hopes for Vanishing line. The original Garo: The Animation was an unexpectedly excellent swashbuckling adventure, but that show’s first sequel was a dreary mess, and without much of the original staff confirmed here, it’d be silly to expect much from round three. Still, the original Garo leaves me inclined to give any future sequels a try, so it’s likely worth a shot.

You can check out the PV here.

Blood Blockade Battlefront & Beyond

I don’t really have high expectations for BBB&B, either – I felt its first season was fine, but was also carried almost entirely by the strength of its director Rie Matsumoto. With Matsumoto having left the project, all we have left are a bunch of action adventures from the mind of the guy who made Trigun. That could still be a reasonable show, but it’s probably not something for me.

You can check out the PV here.

Land of the Lustrous

I know, CG, gasp. And yet, in spite of its CG animation, Land of the Lustrous’ first trailer demonstrates its creators clearly know what they’re doing. The show actually has a fairly striking aesthetic all things considered, and when you match that to some generally well-regarded source material, you end up with a show that’s certainly worth a second glance.

You can check out that PV here.

And that’s it for me! Let me know if you all are looking forward to anything else, and I hope you found something promising here. Either way, it looks like we’ve got a strong season of anime ahead of us!

3 thoughts on “Fall 2017 Season Preview

  1. Speaking of CGI shows, I think I’ll have to watch Inuyashiki. I read the manga which just finished, and, well, it’s a pretty ridiculous story, that starts with an interesting premise (how many superhero stories have a 50 year old dude with wife and children as their protagonist?) but has a lot of back and forth between him and his enemy that becomes somewhat tedious and a very abrupt ending. Still, it’s a finished story and I’m curious to see if they can may be improve it by adaptation, cutting off some of the unnecessary fluff.

    Also it features a scene of Donald Trump going completely fucking psycho on live TV at an official White House press conference. So there’s that.

  2. I’m calling this season the “25-idol pile-up on I-5”, because in addition to Love Live and Im@s, we have a second season of Wake Up, Girls! (ignoring the chibi zoo-themed spin-off and the two movies we didn’t get here). I’ve always liked the balancing act that WUG tries to pull off by both committing to its idol competition and song-and-dance, while simultaneously being deeply troubled by the realities of idol culture (if not the skeevy idea of using children for entertainment in the first place). Maybe you can ding it for not coming down on one side or the other, but when they acknowledge the tension, it’s a pretty unique vibe.

  3. Oh wow, Girls’ Last Tour and Land of the Lustrous in the same season? That’s a whole lot of cute post-apocalyptic existentialism, I hope the adaptations pan out! Would be great to introduce these to anime-over-manga friends.

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