Anime First Impressions – Spring 2021

Oh thank god it’s Spring! I don’t know about you, but this past Winter was pretty tough, with the Pandemic and the weather, it just made for a less than pleasant couple of months. But now we’re into Spring! The weather is warmer, the flowers are sprouting, and the sun is out again! This also means we get a new set of anime to watch, all new series plus a few returning ones to sink our teeth into. Admittedly, I took a long break from anime for the last year and missed a lot of great shows, but I’m slowly getting back into it this season. Some of these series I’ve heard about already because of their manga and some I’ve heard being discussed on social media. A couple of them have been adapted from manga that I already love and I was super excited to start watching the anime. 

There were a few series that I thought I should watch if only because they were in the romance genre and it would give me something to review. But after more consideration, I didn’t think I really wanted to watch them because of their concepts of an older man falling in love with a high school girl. These are just not the kind of romance stories I want to watch right now. Below are a couple of the series I started this season and my first impressions.

Way of the Househusband

Platform: Netflix

Director: Chiaki Kon

Studio: J.C. Staff

Genre: Comedy, Slice-of-life

This anime is based on the manga by Kousuke Oono, where an ex-yakuza boss retired from his life of crime to settle down with his wife and become a househusband. Nicknamed “The Immortal Dragon,” Tatsu must now put his life in the yakuza behind him and get used to living a normal, boring life to support his wife, Miku. However, he can’t escape his long history with the yakuza completely as former associates and rivals make appearances, and his previous habits lead to comedic scenarios.

Way of the Househusband is one of my all-time favorite manga series (i’ve reviewed it here previously), so I was super excited to see it get an anime adaptation coming to Netflix. The first season is a short collection of five episodes, with a second season/ part 2 already approved. However, as much as I loved the manga, I could not get past the first episode. The anime and animation, more specifically, was a huge disappointment for me. From the interview with Director Chiaki Kon, it looks like the Producer was the one to really push for an animation style that was reminiscent of reading the manga. Unfortunately, I don’t think this really works for a manga packed with so much movement and dynamism. By keeping the style to that of the manga, they are denying fans the experience of seeing this awesome and hugely hilarious story in full animation with the kind of movement that would really bring out the story to its full potential. 

Overall, I can’t recommend this anime to fans of the manga. 

The Saint’s Magic Power is Omnipotent

Platform: Funimation

Director: Shota Ihara

Studio: Diomedea

Genre: Isekai, Fantasy, Romance

The Saint’s Magic Power is Omnipotent follows the life of office worker, Sei, who finds herself transported to a fantasy world after coming home from a long day at work. The Prince of this fantasy kingdom mistakenly summons two girls from Japan, and Sei is promptly passed over in favor of the other, much younger girl. With nothing to do, and no way back to Japan, Sei joins the Research Institute and puts her new-found magic powers to use making potions and studying herbs.

I had just started this manga series when I heard it was getting an anime adaptation. It was originally a light novel series, then got a manga adaptation with an English release this past December. Both the light novels and the manga are still releasing, so I’m a bit hesitant about how the anime series will go, and if it will at some point begin to overtake the original content. However, for what it is right now, I really love the series so far. I think the animation is really eye-catching and dynamic, the character designs are really cute and close to how they were in the manga. I’ll probably still stick to reading the manga for the most part, to get the full experience of the story, but for an anime adaptation, this one is very good. I’m really interested to see how they progress this story, if they make any changes, or anything that might improve the story from the manga. 

I think if you’re a fan of the light novel or manga, you’ll be satisfied with this anime.

The Slime Diaries

Platform: Crunchyroll

Director: Yuuji Haibara

Studio: 8-Bit

Genre: Isekai, Fantasy, Slice-of-life

The Slime Diaries is a collection of spin-off stories based on the main series That Time I Was Reincarnated as a Slime. The anime focuses on the day-to-day life of Rimuru and the people living in the ever-expanding community of Tempest. From prepping the fields for farming, to checking in on the residents and various projects, Rimuru still has a lot to do even when there’s no pressing danger. 

I absolutely love the new-ish trend for fantasy slice-of-life’s. It’s one of my favorite genres and I’m always looking for new ones to watch or read. That Time I Was Reincarnated as a Slime is one of my favorite isekai series because of its focus on daily life, building a community, and forging alliances among the different communities. Now we have a series that takes these awesome and entertaining characters and shows what daily life is like for this community that we have been watching being built throughout the main series. It’s super fulfilling and very relaxing to have these episodes that take a step back from the action and the drama and give us more depth to the world and the characters. I’m really looking forward to watching more of these episodes. So far, they have been very funny, relaxing, and cute and I can’t wait to see what kind of hijinks or developments will be in store for the city of Tempest. 

I’ve Been Killing Slimes for 300 Years and Maxed Out My Level

Platform: Crunchyroll

Director: Nobukage Kimura

Studio: Revoroot

Genre: Isekai, Fantasy, Comedy, Slice-of-life

I’ve Been Killing Slimes for 300 Years… follows the life of Japanese office worker, Azusa, who dies from overwork and finds herself reincarnated into a new fantasy world. Her new 17-year-old body is immortal, unaging and has the powers of a Witch. After she died from overworking herself in her last life, Azusa is committed to spending this one as stress-free as possible. However, after spending 300 years killing slimes to make a living, she finds herself at level 99 with amazing powers. How will she be able to maintain her peaceful life now?

I wasn’t entirely sold on this anime when I first started watching it. There are a lot of isekai out with very ridiculous premises and long titles just as ridiculous. But I’ve been on a fantasy/ slice-of-life kick for a while and it seemed like this anime might have some of the things I’ve been looking for. After watching one episode, I found myself enjoying it, though I’m hesitant to see where it goes from here. The character of Azusa is pretty cute, though her hat is way too large for her head. After the appearance of Laika, I’m thinking we’re going to see more monsters and powerful people flock to her and start living with her, most likely more cute girls. I’m a little worried this might devolve into some weird plotlines, but I’m hopeful that we’ll still see a fairly wholesome backbone throughout considering Azusa’s compassion to the people around her. 

I think if you’re looking for a fairly wholesome isekai, this one might be for you!

To Your Eternity

Platform: Crunchyroll

Director: Masahiko Murata

Studio: Brain’s Base

Genre: Fantasy, Adventure

To Your Eternity follows a mysterious immortal being named Fushi, sent to the Earth with no emotions nor identity. Fushi is able to take on the shape of those around that leave a strong impression on him. Starting off as a white orb, he takes the form of a rock, then a dying wolf. As a wolf, Fushi meets a boy living alone in a deserted Arctic wasteland. His one wish is to leave and follow the people who left to find a place of paradise and meet new people. Only they never make it. Now Fushi must take on the journey, travelling the world and discovering new things.

I wasn’t sure what to make of this anime when I saw it come up on Crunchyroll. I knew I had heard of the manga before, and the adaptation was getting a lot of attention on social media. From the comments, I knew going in that it would be tough to watch, but I had no foreknowledge of the plot at the time. All I knew was it was a fantasy show where it looked like a boy and his dog traveled the world. You could say I was surprised to see how the plot actually turned out. The comments on social media were right, it’s a tough show to watch, not because it’s not good but because it deals with some heavy emotions. Overall, I think the anime will be fantastic. Brain’s Base did a great job on the animation, and the story is constructed in such a way that you really don’t know what’s going to happen in the future. It’s safe to say I’ll be keeping up with this one as the season goes on.

If you’re looking for an emotional, thought provoking fantasy, I highly encourage you to check this one out.

Dragon Goes House-Hunting

Platform: Funimation

Director: Haruki Kasugamori

Studio: Signal.MD

Genre: Fantasy, Slice-of-life, Comedy

Dragon Goes House-Hunting follows a young dragon named Letty who is kicked out by his family and forced to find somewhere else to live. A shy and timid dragon, he is on a quest to find the perfect home where he can hide from hunters and heroes alike and relax. The episodes follow him and his realtor/elf companion as they tour one home after another to try and find the perfect fit for Letty. 

Truth be told, I wasn’t really interested in watching the show at first. I found the concept kind of lacking and a little silly, but I was looking for something easy and comfy to watch. After the first episode, my opinion did change a little bit. I don’t necessarily think it’s a great anime, but I think it’s entertaining enough for the concept. My one annoyance was the design for the dragons. They look really awkward with their huge back legs and tiny T-Rex arms. It makes Letty’s movements look really weird. Otherwise, I think there are some really funny bits to be found in the series. Like the fact that the Hunters are modeled after Monster Hunter with their little cat companions and propensity for roasting meat on a spit. I like the character of Dearia who pushes Letty to his limit almost daily. The episodic nature of the show, I think, will make for a fairly light-hearted and chill watch.

If you’re looking for a chill and funny fantasy to watch, you might like this one.

~~Thanks for Reading!~~

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