The Spring 2016 season is now upon us. Winter brought us a couple of good shows like ERASED, but on the whole, it was a little dry. To cure us all, spring seems to be bringing some great-looking shows, and if you haven’t done so already, you should check some out. There has been a trend in recent years of one single show being the highlight of the season, while all other shows are a bit ‘meh’ in terms of quality. This spring looks like it will be an exception.
One anime that has garnered quite a bit of attention is Mayoiga. Suspense/mystery shows are rising in popularity again (maybe thanks to ERASED for bringing focus to the genre), and Mayoiga certainly looks interesting. Thirty men and women are on a suspicious bus tour to a secluded – maybe non-existent – village called Nanakimura. Rumoured to be a utopia where one can start their life anew and erase all the terrible events of their past, Nanakimura seems like a dream come true for these people. Each one of the thirty has their own hopes and scars from the past, each one of them is desperate to begin everything again. But pretty soon, neither the tour nor the village are as they seem. A faint sense of life lingers in this village, even though it is long since abandoned.
It’s an original show produced by Diomedea, without a manga or game basis, and has been airing since the beginning of April. Many of us are suckers for a great mystery, so if Diomedea can pull this off, Mayoiga could perhaps be one of the most popular anime this season. The concept is enough to tempt you in, but we’ll have to see if it can keep us engaged.
Speaking of popularity, we all know that massive amount of attention One Punch Man got when it was originally released last year. Hoping to piggyback of the success in the rise of alternative takes on shounen, Boku no Hero Academia began to air this month. A lot of people are calling it the One Punch Man of this season, but it’s hard to see why. Yes, they’re both shounen, but with pretty different ideas. The story follows a boy named Izuku, who struggles to fit into a world where super powers are the norm, and he hasn’t got a shred of power himself. He’s picked up by the world’s greatest hero, who shares his powers with the boy and enrols him in a high school for heroes.
Originally serialised in Shounen Jump magazine, this anime seems straightforward; a tale of a powerless boy who has greatness thrust upon him,who then defeats the odds to become a respected hero. It could prove us wrong. It could surprise us with plot twists, and it could stray away from the reused tropes of the shounen genre. Or, it could simply be a really entertaining anime that wears its plot on its sleeve and seeks only to amuse rather than provoke thought. Either way, it could still be worth a watch if you haven’t considered it yet.
Moving away from any seriousness at all, here’s a slice of life comedy that we’ve been looking forward to: Sakamoto desu ga? (Haven’t you heard? I’m Sakamoto!) High school slice of life shows are a bit of an acquired taste, especially if you don’t like the typical moeblob art style that comes along with them most of the time. Sakamoto desu ga? centres around male protagonist Sakamoto. He’s a flawless student: good looks, top marks in every subject, and he always steps in to help people whenever he can. He is perfect, and he knows it. We follow his high school life as he employs his wealth of secret skills to help his classmates in the most over-the-top way. It’s crazy, it’s hilarious, and it’s not meant to be taken seriously – at all. We anticipate that Sakamoto desu ga? will at least make us chuckle this season. We could be looking at some genius humour here if it’s pulled off correctly. This anime is worth a watch. Even if you watch nothing else this season, give Sakamoto-kun a try.
There are so many more seemingly great shows in the line-up this season, including the second seasons of a few. Do some searching and find out which shows interest you the most if there’s none above that are to your liking. Spring 2016 is looking to be a fantastic season – if it lives up to expectations.