As awesome as anime turned out this year, not everything stayed that way. A lot of shows I was looking forward to the most ended up being the WORST shows this year, and a lot of endings, delays, and arcs in others ended up making an otherwise great show fumble. These are the top 5 worst experiences with anime this year for me personally. Some honorable mentions would be the massive ~5 month delay for Kekkai Sensen’s average quality finale and Lance N’ Masques which did a complete fucking nosedive a bit of the way in when it randomly decided to try and be To Love-Ru after a completely wholesome bunch of episodes. Luckily Your Lie In April was last year or it’d definitely be in here, what a pile of shit that ended up as.
Some of these are not full shows, as you’ll see with this first one, so I guess it’s more of a top 5 worst anime “experiences” list, well whatever. This list is in no real order, by the way.
Honorable Mentions that should have been on here: Kuroko no Basuke 3 – it’s a sequel to two seasons that were 10/10 and ends up being a 5/10 at best – if this was the “biggest disappointments” it would have won. Arslan is also worth a mention for it’s incredibly pathetic CG quality and massive use of them, even zooming in and showcasing them as something they were proud of quite often – all on top of the just fucking awful writing.
Gangsta’s “ending” is quite possibly one of the most egregious ploys to make you buy a manga I’ve ever seen. It’s genuinely offensive. The entire show up to it is this really great and gritty thing with a fantastic cast of unique character types going through exciting and tense events – then we get to an all-out war going down in the city they all live in. It starts pretty cool, though honestly not as good as the rest of the show given it turned into a plain action series at this point, but it was just an arc and it was the way it was gonna end, so that was fine. Then, oops, it just stops. There’s no stopping point, there’s no end to the arc, it just stops. Worst of all, it does that right after showing a BUNCH OF REALLY IMPORTANT BIG SHIT POPPING OFF – not just this war, but THE MAIN CHARACTER DYING ON A STREET, the other still fighting, and a bunch of other shit dealing with the main cast all one step away from telling you what happens right in the climax of this arc. You want to know what happens? GO BUY THE MANGA :^)
More upsetting is the fact that you can’t pin the blame on the studio going bankrupt (gee, I wonder why) while working on this because if you look back, oh, they wasted an entire time slot on a fucking pointless RECAP in a TWELVE EPISODE SERIES. This was done on purpose, they purposefully ended the show in the middle of the climax of an intense arc with the characters all in dangerous situations and every plot string at it’s most interesting – because now you HAVE TO KNOW and there’s no way to aside throwing some cash down for the source material. Anime isn’t made the same week it airs like Shittybako would lead retards to believe, this was completed way before it aired – it’s not like they got to this point and realized oh no we have only our final episode left and 1 hour to make it?!?!?!. This was 100% a purposeful decision made months in advance, same with the recap episode’s placement wasting a slot for what would have been a 13th episode.
Fun romance shows that aren’t harem shit are, sadly, a rare thing lately and yet still my favorite type of anime. Ore Monogatari seemed like the perfect candidate for bringing something amazing back to that genre alongside some other pretty good releases last year in that same arena (kamisama kiss, wolf girl and black prince, ao haru ride). Sadly, it ended up one of the most pointless things anyone could have ever written once you get past the first three or so episodes. From that point on the entire show has absolutely NO REASON to exist whatsoever, absolutely NOTHING happens at all – nothing funny, interesting, or even anything progressing their relationship. The girl goes WAAAAIIIIIIII and the guy goes I LOVE HER!!!! and this is literally the absolute ONLY content for the entire series. I mean literally every episode is identical to the last, it’s not even like they WAAIII and SUKIII around doing something different, it’s THE EXACT SAME SHIT EVERY WEEK IN EVERY FUCKING WAY. The only time that stops are the two really shitty exceptions which would be the two equally pointless and retarded additions of trying to create love-triangle drama in a show with an established couple that isn’t serious or mature enough to remotely hint at cheating or leaving one another – so you see these arcs starting and they’re just obnoxious. Why throw in a new girl who will get shut down within the same episode? Why throw in a guy and then have the MC make buddy-buddy with him stupidly then acting surprised when the guy who just said “I’m gonna bang your girlfriend” is trying to bang his girlfriend and then making friends with him anyway?
Who wants this shit? Oh, right, all the people claiming this revived the genre with super unique and unheard of events – like the main couple getting together early on! It’s literally a show popular with only people who do not actually watch romance anime in the first place, much like how Madoka was treated as some “deconstruction” and an original unique thing within its genre PURELY BECAUSE OF IGNORANCE OF THE GENRE and not realizing Madoka was incredibly derivative and outright thieving from the genre in every single aspect of it. Making matters worse, Ore Monogatari is ironically the OPPOSITE of what people love to say about it and how it “actually goes places” with the main couple…it completely and OBJECTIVELY stops having any progress the moment they get together early on. Once that happens their relationship never evolves, they never act like human beings either, they never show any actual real love for one another – they just yell how much they love each other while it takes to the end of the show for them to hold hands a second time and still do nothing else at all.
Worst of all is the fact that there’s an actual good and genuine romance story going on right next to this couple involving Takeo – the love of his best friend’s sister who we get such earnest development for and realize her feelings are true while his current girlfriend is just a vapid WAAAAAAAAIIIIIIII machine who wants to be dicked by his giant man piece (that’s canon by the way). Her story goes nowhere!
Another show I was so fucking excited to see and even had one of the best episodes of all time thanks to the subtle directing and amazing management of the twist that made it surprising even though everyone already knew it was coming. Gakkou Gurashi was marketed as a somewhat serious slice of life with a very unique setting – girls surviving their day to day life in a zombie outbreak. Seeing how they survive, dealing with the problems, and of course – and very heavy in episode 1 – the mental trauma these kids would be going through. Instead it just turned out to be a fanservice filled pile of shit full of pointless tits being showcased, a non-stop stream in almost any episode she’s in of camera shots 100% aimed to make for the best ‘ass-shots’ possible of Miki who is also almost never wearing any bottoms aside her panties (and oddly hooker style stockings) for the viewer, bikinis all around, shower scenes with no events, dialogue, or anything going on aside showing us a little girl showering for 3 minutes straight on multiple occasions…and that’s just the fanservice garbage shoved in to a show where it has absolutely no reason to be.
Even putting all that aside, there’s the godawful writing and the insane amount of plotholes and lack of basic thought on any character’s part in ways that, even in their situation, make no sense. I don’t want to sit here pretty much telling you the ENTIRE STORY given almost everything in it is a perfect example of that stuff, so picking one just wont’ do justice because it’ll make it seem like a single exception where it was bad. On top of the shit writing and shit fanservice, the directing lost all it’s subtlety quickly after episode 1 which was a huge blow to the best thing about the series. After that episode it just turns into a mess of super obvious things that I didn’t even REALIZE were meant to be twists – like the fact the teacher is dead the whole time, no shit she is, the show LITERALLY FUCKING TELLS YOU almost constantly and yet the show treats it like this amazingly out of nowhere “holy shit, WHAT?!?!?!?!” moment for the VIEWER when the character finds out the truth. They even made a special version of the ED for her. That’s what this show is – a fucking mess with no idea what it’s trying to do and feels like it had a bunch of writers who didn’t talk to one another making it along with an animation staff who really wanted to jerk off to Miki who is almost never fully clothed and has a camera up her fucking vagina half the time.
Almost forgot, the solution at the end is “tell the zombies school is out” and they literally leave.
If you’ve ever wanted to see the Japanese attempt to convince themselves the rape of Nanking was actually in the defense of the people living there and for the sake of saving them from their evil Chinese overlords, this should be your first stop. It’s in no way the first piece of incredibly nationalistic propaganda to come out of the industry, but it’s both the most recent and definitely one of the most egregious; up there with Grave of the Fireflies and Barefoot Gin. On top of that, there’s a harem full of all the shittiest characters possible including one straight out named loli – oh, can’t forget the main character is, of course, a “total otaku” who is also the most talented member of the entire JSDF! JUST LIKE YOU! THIS COULD BE YOU, OTAKU! ISN’T THAT AMAZING? YOU COULD BE A COOL DUDE WITH A HAREM OF ALL SORTS OF GIRLS JUST LIKE IN YOUR ANIMES EVEN ELF GIRLS!
All the while, the main cast goes around committing some of the biggest war atrocities in the history of mankind while saying it’s to “save” the people in this world they just invaded and wiped out over 130,000 defenders overnight. Of course that’s canon, so all the women they “save” want the cock of the main character from within seconds of meeting this SAVIOR who only slaughtered all of their family members the night before TO PROTECT THEM! I’ve gone into detail with this show and everything fucking awful about it already in a post awhile ago, but holy shit is this thing terrible. It’s one of the most pandery things I’ve ever seen: otaku MC, harem, and probably the only time I’ll ever say this but it’s also a clear power fantasy for losers watching to feel empowered by – thinking they too could be this main character some day “if only” a gate to another world opened.
Fanservice, mindless slaughter of innocents who see you as rescuers after you kill their loved ones and lust for your dick in return (with no irony behind it), hilariously inaccurate depictions of military equipment even though it’s written by an ex-JSDF member, and just the most incredibly nationalistic story I’ve ever seen in the most unentertaining and uninteresting way imaginable. It’s INCREDIBLY OBVIOUS that this was written by one of those massively xenophobic and Empire of Japan loving losers who whitewashes history at every turn, portrays any non-Japanese as evil or helpless, and of course the murderous violent imperialistic nation of Japan trying to conquer an entire world for themselves as the HEROES (they outright call it “humanitarian relief” in the show) and is completely unaware of how fucking retarded it is rather than doing this for irony or satire.
I was so excited to watch this, I have huge interest in stories with asymmetrical combat and time periods clashing and this seemed to be exactly what I’ve wanted to see and even personally write…and then it aired and ended up what it was; one of the worst anime I’ve ever seen and one of the most thinly veiled propaganda pieces possible.
Gintama’s Shogun Assassination Arc
This is by far the biggest disappointment and most plain bad thing that I had to sit through this year. One of the longest arcs in the shows history, one of the most promoted when it was coming up even with big trailers over a month beforehand, and one of the most pathetic things to come out of the entire series. First, that whole gambit of ads, trailers, constant pushes to get you hyped up and super-excited for this arc that they officially were pushing everywhere they could. It’s just sad if you’ve been with the show a long time. Remember Benizakura? The last time an arc was treated as this huge, intense, hyped up thing? Of course you do – yet that only happened for the MOVIE ADAPTATION, when it aired there was nothing like that from any official source, it was just yet another arc and one of the very first serious ones. This time though they tried jumping on the bandwagon before it existed, telling the fans “this is how you should feel because you did with that other arc!” to try and artificially create a sense of mass popularity and interest in the arc. Even before it aired this felt kind of…gross? It reminded me of when publishers started pushing “official” shortenings of show titles after they noticed otaku had been doing it to all their retardedly long titles and now they’d be hip and start doing it before fans could.
However, lets get to the arc itself. This is one of the most unbelievably scared things I’ve ever seen – not scary, but the gorilla who writes this and the staff who adapted it being afraid to actually do anything. Let’s start with the title – Shogun Assassination Arc. Does the Shogun get assassinated? No. He’s shown to multiple times, but every single time it’s “not actually him”, even when it’s shown incredibly seriously and dramatically – turns out it’s just another body double who was willing to die for the cause, even that very emotional time when Zenzo beheads him. Don’t call the arc the Shogun assassination arc if you are not going to assassinate the shogun – I think that’s a fair fucking thing to ask of them. But okay, I get it, the shogun is a fan-favorite (and one of mine as well), and the way it all works out makes some tiny bit of sense. Then Sougo fights one of the officially strongest characters in the entire Gintama universe – Kagura’s brother – and while Sougo somehow becomes way more capable in combat than he EVER HAS BEEN IN THE ENTIRE FUCKING SERIES MAGICALLY WITHOUT ANYONE SAYING A THING ABOUT IT (which is already bad enough), he then gets his hand cut off. No, nevermind, just a trick! The fight continues and he gets kil-nope he’s fine, and oh he just went down on a floating ship that lost its ability to float in the sky and he survived that too after not even being able to stand. Then Kagura gets her head smashe-nope, just dramatic blood and crunch noises even though the guys leg was actually cut off just in time. What about Zenzo who just got stabbed in the gut and is making an incredibly dramatic monologue and flashback because he’s dying? Nah, that sword never hit him at all, Sacchan saved him! What about Sacchan who just got fucking shot in the chest and is bleeding out? Of course it’s nothing. Sadly there’s even more where that came from, almost everyone in the arc ends up “dying” like 3 fucking times per goddamn episode, and not a single time is it real or even them being hurt in a meaningful way.
I’m totally fine with Gintama of all things not killing off cast members, but I’m not okay with ANYTHING pushing a very serious arc and one even with someone’s death IN THE TITLE being too scared to even SCAR A CAST MEMBER. We can’t kill named characters, we can’t permanently harm named characters, and – oh, right – we can’t even kill faceless background nobodies! Guess what, and this is canon, they were all fake puppets! If this had any sign it was a parody arc I’d get it, this is ironically what every fuck-awful battle shounen does but to an even further extreme than they do – hell, even DBZ kills off characters (even if they end up fine fighting in tournaments in hell)…but this is 100% not a joke arc. Besides all of that it was just a boring fucking clump of episodes anyway, so it’s already disappointing enough as it is, especially with the embarrasing push to try and force this into being “the next big thing”.
Does something EVENTUALLY happen? Maybe, the arc isn’t over yet – but nothing will undo the fact they have fake-killed literally over 15 times with the main cast and HUNDREDS of times if you include the background “puppets” in the episodes we’ve seen so far. If someone dies now I won’t give a fuck after all this bullshit, plus the episodes are just bad anyway.