I could end up watching a lot of anime come April.
Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
Of the five anime I’ve picked, this is the one I’m most iffy about. Even after reading some of the manga, I can’t quite get a handle on Shonen Jump’s Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba. What I wanted from this is another Claymore or Dororo: a dark trek through a heartless landscape; a journey dotted with tragedy and heartbreak, but then there’s a lot of comedy in the trailer, which feels weird and doesn’t fit with Ufotable’s moody atmosphere. The demons are also a bit disappointing: more vampires than actual monsters. We’ll just have to see. Mainly this is here because I’m a sucker for the aesthetic of the late Meiji & early Taisho period and the manga’s cover art is lovely.
Fairy gone is one of the few of new anime this season with adults as the main characters! Combine that with P.A. Works’ reliable production quality and there’s already reason to be intrigued. Written by Ao Jūmonji, the author of Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash, and directed by Kenichi Suzuki, the director of the first three JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure anime, there’s a reliable core of anime creators working on Fairy gone. The premise is fairly typical: during a war, people have “fairies” transplanted into them from animals, granting them special abilities to fight. What’s more interesting is that this is a post-war drama: years later, there’s still soldiers running around with those weird abilities.
It’s a Kunihiko (Utena) Ikuhara anime. As ever with this guy, expect something surreal and emotional. The trailer and promotional art gives off a tsuritama/Eccentric Family vibe which is no bad thing: there’s a kappa running amok in Japan stealing peoples’ “shirikodama”, a “mythical organ” pulled from of a person’s anus that transforms them into a kappa! I said it was weird, right?! Sarazanmai is about pulling the shirikodama from zombies… This could be really, really gross.
With Run with the Wind finishing, I’ll need a new sports anime to spill my guts over and what better than a new Mitsuru Adachi baseball anime?! And a multi-generational sequel to Touch at that! The last Adachi anime I saw was 2009’s Cross Game and that was excellent. He’s 68 years old now but I doubt he’s lost any of his charm.
Fingers crossed the anime production can hold up: none of the staff involved strike me as particularly good: from the director (Toshinori Watanabe) to series composition (Atsuhiro Tomioka), there’s hardly a good anime between them, but I have faith that Adachi’s quality will shine through. Be prepared for a slow-burning, down-to-Earth sports drama: the sound of crickets in the depths of a long, hot summer as another group of boys dream of carrying their school to the Koshien.
Carole & Tuesday
Whenever Shinichiro Watanabe’s involved in an anime series, there’s reason to feel excited, but then I saw the trailer for Carole & Tuesday and my expectations went through the roof. Animation-wise, it’s already looking like a reliably high-level Bones production, but what’s most promising is the clear rapport between the girls: the scene of them jamming together is full of tiny details, like the intricate finger work on Tuesday’s guitar. This looks like an anime that’s celebrating music and a story about doing what you love. The last anime I saw like this was Your Lie in April and if Carole & Tuesday is anywhere near as good, we’re onto a winner.