Winter 2017 Season Wrap, Part 2

In the hopes of shedding my winter gear and moving into the spring, I’ve decided to continue on with this second part of my season wrap. I may or may not give my final thoughts on Tales of Zestiria the X after the last episode airs at the end of the month (05.13.17 edit: Zestiria review can be read here).

Overall, this winter season treated me remarkably well, with a couple of gems I would include in a top-30-of-all-time list. It’s not often that a series comes along I can definitively say exemplifies the possibilities of anime as a medium for storytelling, or that transcends its art style in such a way that anime skeptics can still appreciate. Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu and ACCA: 13-ku Kansatsu-ka are two such titles.

In addition to these pillars, there are also several shows that have already become cult classics, such as Kemono Friends and Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon. These anime understood and executed their roles perfectly, capturing the hearts and loyalty of their audience almost from the beginning. Maybe I can’t provide a synopsis about either to a non-anime viewer without raising some eyebrows, but that doesn’t change the fact that these characters had a powerful impact on me. Shows like Kemono Friends remind me to see the best in myself and others no matter how bleak the surroundings. That’s a particularly important reminder these days.

  • ACCA: 13-ku Kansatsu-ka
  • Gabriel DropOut
  • Kemono Friends
  • Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon
  • Kuzu no Honkai
  • Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans 2nd Season
  • Onihei
  • Youjo Senki

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ACCA’s Menu of Cakes for the Rich and Breads for the Poor

[King] “Do you like sweets?”
[Lotta] “Yes!”
[King] “Have as much as you’d like.”

“The Swirling Smoke of Rumors in the Castle,” ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept.

Viewers of ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept. rave about the series while also wondering about the significance of bread in the narrative. Among the cigarette smoking, district inspections, and political intrigue sits breads of all kinds–sweet bread, earthy bread, herb bread, the list goes on. Their imagery and descriptions cause the mouth to water, but also beg the question about why bread is so prominently featured. This is a story about a struggling kingdom swarming with rumors of a coup, not some light-hearted comedy set in a cafe.

I want you to consider this: diet is one of the quickest ways to determine a given location’s culture and class situation. Wealthy nations tend to overflow with a variety of meats, vegetables, and grains, much of which is imported from outside; poor and isolated countries that cannot afford the many costs of trade often pull from limited, local sources. We see this reflected in the different districts of Dowa, a monarchy comprised of semi-independent states that are encouraged to emphasize their cultural differences. As ACCA inspector Jean Otus conducts his interior reviews throughout the districts, we are presented with all kinds of foodstuffs, most of which are baked goods.

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Winter 2017 Set Menu

20 anime, only three of which are ongoing! Ackkkkk! Somehow I’ve overloaded myself again, despite my excitement for the year dimming at the winter’s less-than-groundbreaking offerings. The good news is that I have more time now to devote to analysis and blogging, so you can look forward to more frequent editorials and, hopefully, some recipes. While there are no food-centric anime this season, I have faith that delicious dishes will still make their appearance. This is anime, after all, where the Japanese devotion to the culinary arts reveals itself whether you’re looking for it or not.

I did try a handful of other winter shows and dropped accordingly. Most notable drops include Hand Shakers and Fuuka, each of which I kicked after only two minutes. Let me know what you’re excited for this season, and if you think I’m missing out on anything!

  • ACCA: 13-ku Kansatsu-ka
  • Ao no Exorcist: Kyoto Fujouou-hen
  • Demi-chan wa Kataritai 
  • ēlDLIVE
  • Gabriel DropOut
  • Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon
  • Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku wo! 2
  • Kuzu no Honkai 
  • Little Witch Academia (TV)
  • Masamune-kun no Revenge
  • Minami Kamakura Koukou Joshi Jitensha-bu
  • Onihei
  • Seiren
  • Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu: Sukeroku Futatabi-hen
  • Tales of Zestiria the X 2nd Season
  • Urara Meirochou
  • Yowamushi Pedal: New Generation

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