The season’s shows are still jostling at this point, jockeying for position and demonstrating which of their early strengths they can maintain and as-of-yet not quite imploding. Rakugo Shinju and ERASED are the easy top contenders, but beyond that, it’s a mixed field of shows that are either imbalanced, lacking in ambition, or somewhat inconsistent, but all still more or less worth watching. It’s probably not the generally strongest member of this pack, but Grimgar is actually the one I have the highest hopes for. The show’s weaknesses are loud and frustrating and obvious, but its strengths are very unique, and that appeals to me more than something like Dimension W’s straightforward but somewhat flavorless polish. But the overall crop still makes this easily the best season since last spring, so I’d say this is a good place to be. Let’s RUN ‘EM DOWN!
And with preview week firmly in the past, it’s time to return to our scheduled week in review. So far, this season is actually turning out better than I’d hoped – I didn’t really expect most of the shows in my own preview post to actually end up doing well, and having two legitimately excellent shows in a season is basically all I can hope for from any season. Between Erased and Genroku Rakugo, we’re already there – both of those shows impressed with strong premieres and followed through with consistent second episodes. And even beyond the highlights, there’s a reasonable crop of middle-tier shows as well, depending on your own genre tastes. The season is strong enough that I’m currently deciding to be truly ruthless, and cut off both Utawarerumono and Iron-Blooded Orphans until I feel compelled either personally or through general fan noise to pick them back up again. There are too many good shows in the world to waste time watching things I’m not enjoying.