Fall 2018 Anime: What Am I Anticipating the Most?
As often as I complain about the problems of keeping up with new anime, when I make an effort to, I'm usually rewarded. A problem with the way anime is consumed these days vs. in the past is that there used to be a kind of filter, straining out bad shows, or at least shows unlikely to become popular in the United States. That filter was Cartoon Network, what they chose to put on their Adult Swim and Toonami blocks in terms of anime. Sometimes, anime was on other networks during 'kids' cartoon' time slots, but these were 'kiddie' anime like Digimon. These anime were washed clean of their orientalness, making them safe for consumption by American children, via the now-widely-hated 4Kids dubs. Anime for adults was considered edgy, experimental, and rare. So were genuinely well-made cartoons adults and kids alike could enjoy, like Samurai Jack.
TV still exists, but TV networks aren't what decides what anime we see and when anymore - the internet does. Unlike TV, the internet is less controlled and the content you see is, more or less, the content you chose to actively seek out. The good news is, you have more freedom than ever, and it's easier than ever to find underground, experimental, artistic things a network would consider 'risky'.
But this also presents a problem. What happens when you have to be your own TV network? When you have precious little free time, hundreds of everyday demands on your time, and the fear of mistakenly wasting such limited free time on something not worthy?
Well, I listen to what other people are saying about things on the internet. And I hope my own blog can be useful to people who want to know if they will like something or not, without having to invest a lot of time.
Here I will list everything listed on My Anime List as TV anime coming out in the Fall 2018 season, in descending order - from most users who are interested in watching it to least. Anything with no synopsis or art yet will be left out, as will anything with less than 1,000 members interested in it.
I have not seen any of these anime yet. I am basing my opinion on what information is available at this time.
Some basic questions for this process include:
- Does it look interesting?
- Does it appear to be original or more cliché?
- What do I think of the artwork?
- What do I know about the creators involved?
- What do I know about the studio?
- Is it an adaptation of a manga, light novel, or anime-first?
- If it's a new season of an existing anime, what do I already think about that anime?
So let's get into it.
Sword Art Online: Alicization
If you don't know about Sword Art Online, you've been living under a rock or simply just not that involved in the anime community in recent years. Sword Art Online follows Kirito, an average Gary Stu who, along with thousands of other people, gets trapped in a VR fantasy role-playing game. Kirito struggles to survive and thrive in this world, and also finds love along the way. So this anime is a combination of romance and fantasy-action that many fans love. I'd consider it similar to Fairy Tail and Inuyasha. It's a flawed show, but I can see why many people like it.
In this arc, Kirito is supposed to bond with an NPC he meets named Eugeo. Despite being an NPC, Eugeo seems human. And there's also a blonde girl named Alice. And, Kirito apparently has childhood memories of knowing them.
My Anticipation Level?
A smoldering, 'meh'. I've never been that involved in Sword Art Online. I thought the first 10 or so episodes I watched were dull, with boring characters. An initial draw, the 'trapped in a VR world' aspect of the plot, is quickly forgotten by the writers, in favor of making a light-hearted fantasy romance. Combat scenes look too fake and shiny to be scary. Characters never face real danger and there's never any real character development that I can see. I never felt strongly about any of the characters, and always regarded the best thing about SAO is that it's a pretty spectacle at times. I haven't been keeping up with the story. I don't know if the addition of these new characters will change the status quo enough to make me like the show again. I'll give it a few episodes, but I expect very little.
The studio that gave us Steins; Gate, Re:Zero, and Akame Ga Kill are going to tell us what happened that one time they played an MMO game. Because God knows we don't have enough anime about RPGs. Based on a Light Novel (of course) this anime involves a naive, moé newbie priestess girl who meets a legendary badass known as the Goblin Slayer. I'm not sure whether or not they f*ck.
My Anticipation Level?
Another hard 'meh'. The tag line in the trailer, "I'm not saving the world. I'm just killing goblins." is supposed to be cool and unexpected, but it just strikes me as following the 'rogue antihero' clichés as a replacement for the traditional hero clichés, which is not any better. Those things don't look that hard to kill anyway, they're like 3 feet tall! And the trailer seems to indicate that this may be a harem, or at the very least, there will be jiggling breasts. For me, this is an obvious cheap ploy to sell the idea of a story without much going on in it. I don't hate fan service but I hate it when it's used this way. I probably won't even watch a single episode, unless it turns out to be better than I expected. But looking at it, it reads as a swarm of light novel clichés that refuse to die.
Tokyo Ghoul:re - 2nd Season
Tokyo Ghoul is an iconic horror anime about a boy who suddenly becomes a ghoul, a vampire-like creature who has to feed on human flesh. Normal human food begins to taste terrible to him. He navigates survival in the world of ghouls, makes friends, and tries to make sense of what happened to him.
Tokyo Ghoul:re is a sequel manga series. The trailer doesn't give that many specifics other than stating that this is the end of the story, so this will likely be the last season of Tokyo Ghoul:re.
My Anticipation Level?
I'm not that interested, but I will probably watch it when I get caught up with Tokyo Ghoul, which I still have not finished. I like Tokyo Ghoul based on the episodes I have seen, and I really hope the series comes to an interesting and satisfying conclusion. One thing I like is that the main character isn't a super-strong badass and he actually struggles to beat his opponents. Sometimes girls rescue him, which is a refreshing break from gender norms we're all too familiar with. He's also compassionate, someone who wants to avoid killing people in a world ruled by bloodshed. Will it just be angst and edge, or will there be substance beneath the surface? I don't know, but I'm going to put on my rain poncho to go find out.
Fairy Tail: Final Series
Fairy Tail is one of those long-running, super popular shounen anime. As such, it's never been my cup of tea. I think most people are kind of tired of Fairy Tail by now, and glad it's finally on its way out. Fairy Tail is about the exploits of wannabe wizard Natsu, a boy with dragon powers. He meets ordinary cutie Lucy and action girl Ezra, among other friends he makes. Natsu and other main characters fight hard to prove themselves as newbs in a wizard's guild. It's about coming of age and self-discovery, and it's a gorgeous anime with some cute funny moments as well as some cool fight scenes.
My Anticipation Level?
Zero. I watched a few episodes but never got into Fairy Tail. So the final season? All I can say is good riddance. Another one bites the dust.
Tensei shitara Slime Datta Ken
This is a standard isekai, but the 'twist' is that the protagonist:
- Was an adult.
- Is now a slime ball.
My Anticipation Level?
I'd probably hate this one. The long title with inconsistent capitalization seems like a giveaway that it will suck, as does the words 'fantasy world' in the description. These days, either write a fantasy story or don't. I'm so sick of isekai, that is, stories about a person from our world traveling to and from a fantasy world. It is a genre that can be done well, but right now it's over-saturated with poorly written attempts to capitalize on a trend. Like I said, usually the introduction of real-world technology into a fantasy world makes little sense, and they never talk about bridging cultures on a large scale. It's always just 'protagkun leaps to this other world and has no way of getting back'. But I think what would be really fun to do is to show the concept of fantasy world interacting with our world in open commerce that goes both ways. It would be interesting to see how the fantasy world changes to adopt the internet and build their own cell phone towers and planes. Or to see how our world would change if real magic existed. But we'll never get to see that, because all they want to do is keep making horny teenage boy wish fulfilment harems about a boy who falls into magical elf boobies. Yawn...
Does the twist idea of the protagonist being a ball of slime save this? I am just so utterly sick of and bored with this genre by now, that I don't think any 'twist' on the genre can save it for me. That, and the studio, 8bit, has never done any anime I've liked to date. So...
Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai
I am assaulted with yet another long title, but at least this one does me the mercy of including the phrase 'bunny girl'. The synopsis for this one makes no sense. They mention there is something called 'puberty syndrome', but don't describe the symptoms/effects, only telling us that it affects people during puberty. Duh? Then I watched the trailer, and can report knowing even less, being even more confused. But the overall tone of this seems to be romantic, perhaps in a melancholy way.
My Anticipation Level?
I'm a little interested. The concepts conveyed by the synopsis and trailer seem to indicate that there's some reality warping, mind screw stuff going on here, which could be interesting. It also shows various girls having some intense moments of drama, so I expect that as well. It looks like a show with a lot of feeling, the kind of show where you get drawn in and care about the characters, like them, and really feel for them. I'm curious about this show, and I think it could turn out to be good.
JoJo's Bizarre Adventure Part 5: The Golden Wind
Another season of the exciting, passionate, heartfelt action drama JoJo's Bizarre Adventure. This season will focus on villain Giorno Giovanna, a thief and Stand user.
My Anticipation Level?
Well, I like JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, but I've only seen a few episodes. So I guess I'll get to this one when I get to it. The trailer looks really stunning though.
Toaru Majutsu no Index III
Third season of A Certain Magical Index. No further information is given at this time.
My Anticipation Level?
There's little to go on, so for me there's little to anticipate. Although I'm sure it's exciting news for fans of the series. I've seen an episode or two of A Certain Magical Index, but I barely remember anything about it. The trailer didn't really show all that much. I may end up finishing the two seasons leading up to here, and then I might care. But right now, my anticipatron is set to snooze.
Iroduku: The World in Colors
A gorgeous-looking original anime features a female protagonist (hurray!) named Hitomi, who is sent to the past from a future where some magic exists. Hitomi has 'stale emotions' because she lost her sense of color. Her grandmother, a witch, sends Hitomi to our time because that's when she was the same age as Hitomi, 17. So Hitomi's job is to become friends with her grandmother and her friends, and undergo some transformation of her soul that will allow her to regain her magic.
My Anticipation Level?
It looks cute, but a little too cute. Skirt flapping, soft voices, blushing, glowing backgrounds, high pitched piano used to push on our heartstrings? For me this is all getting a bit too 'greeting card' for my taste. Too saccharine. This plot does sound interesting, and I like female protagonists. But it doesn't look like a great show. Maybe just Ok. But I'd like to be pleasantly surprised.
The sequel to wacky comedy/sci-fi FLCL continues. My Anime List states that these two seasons will have completely separate stories. But going from the trailer, it will have the same characters from the previous season of FLCL Alternate will all come back. Dang, I'd kind of like to see some new characters get assaulted by Haruka Haruhara.
My Anticipation Level?
Well, FLCL is an anime I like, but I have to catch up with FLCL Alternate. The new characters and stories are more sentimental now. The story is now more character-driven than what it was before. I'd say the original FLCL was insanity driven. Is the new story disappointing due to having toned down the surreal and slapstick humor in favor of something more emotional and mature? I wouldn't say it was disappointing but it is different. I definitely want to watch all of FLCL Alternate, and I sense an article comparing it to original FLCL in my future real soon.
Seven moé schoolgirls struggling to survive in a zombie apocalypse.
My Anticipation Level?
I will watch the shit out of this.
Boarding School Juliet
This season's rose petal romance features a mostly female cast, a deluxe boarding school, and from the trailer, I already like the voice acting and music. According to the My Anime List synopsis: ... students come from two rivaling countries known as the "Black Dogs" and "White Cats." Persia and Inuzaka are leaders of their respective dorms, but they are secretly in love with each other."
My Anticipation Level?
I'm a little interested. I do like me some fancy schools and forbidden romances. It also looks like it has a good production value; good music, cute characters, and good voice acting. We'll have to wait and see whether the plot is terrible.
Bloom Into You
The interesting thing about this anime is that it's about what happens when you get a romantic love confession and feel... nothing? I'll definitely sit through one episode. It looks like many yuri romance stories that have come before, but I'll give it a chance and see what unique charms this particular story might have.
The anime seems awash with fantasy/shounen clichés and may suffer from predictability. The sheer number of times they say "Nemesis" in the trailer is infuriating.
Ulysses: Jehanne Darc to Renkin no Kishi
Looks perhaps interesting, and perhaps trying too hard to be edgy. We'll see.
RErideD: Tokigoe no Derrida (Derrida, who leaps through time)
This anime looks like it will pack intense emotional moments, and kind of reminds me of Fullmetal Alchemist. Not merely in superficial references like having a pocket watch, but also in that I can tell this anime will be suspenseful and get you emotionally invested in the characters' lives.
Ore ga Suki Nano wa Imouto dakedo Imouto ja Nai
The fact that you lampshade light novel tropes doesn't make your light novel anime any less flat or any more interesting.
Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru
An anime about running doesn't sound that great as a premise. But it looks like it's about a group of messy college guys trying to figure life out, and that does actually sound interesting.
Golden Kamuy: 2nd Season
I haven't seen the first season, but there's an air of danger to this historical drama about a former soldier who happens upon a stash of gold hidden by criminals in Hokkaido. It looks like exactly my cup of tea; you have survival struggles, war drama, and crime drama.
Is the mecha genre dead? This show seems like it's trying to revive an anime genre that went from synonymous with anime to a kind of forgotten genre on the back-burner. Gridman looks pretty cool. I will probably give it a chance.
This show looks like it's using tragedy in the background to set up a comedy, similarly to Hayate the Combat Butler or Mahoromatic. I can't tell from the trailer if it will really be funny, but it looks cute at least.
Ms. Vampire Who Lives in my Neighborhood.
Finally cute girls who are vampires! I'm kind of interested to see how the addition of horror elements will change up the "cute girls doing cute things" formula. For one, this girl might prefer drinking blood to nomming bread. I hope to see horror contrasted with comedy in a funny way. It also looks like the main characters will play off of each other in a funny way.
Skullface Bookseller Honda-san
This is a comedy slice-of-life anime about a skeleton working in a bookstore. It looks cute, and I'll definitely give it a chance. It's style reminds me of similar light-hearted comedy I've enjoyed in previous years, like Assassination Classroom, Hetalia, and so on.
ALSO: NEW REBOOT OF YYH ANNOUNCED!
- New Yu Yu Hakusho Anime Reveals More Details
A new original animation project was previously announced for Yoshihiro Togashi's Yu Yu Hakusho series, and now more details have arrived.
Release the Spyce
It looks sort of cliché, and reviews currently trickling in confirm a large yawn of disappointment collectively coming from most people who watch it. It has some potential to be interesting, but it looks like too many characters, for one
Hinomaru Sumo is based on a Shounen Jump manga. I was wondering why there hadn't been an anime about sumo wrestling yet, since it is a national pride sport unique to Japan. Perhaps it's not as popular among young people anymore. I normally don't watch sports anime or care about them, but this one does look good.
This anime about fighting puppets seems to have the potential to be thrilling and intriguing. I like action anime, and I was impressed by the visuals and voice acting in the trailer. But, I'm not sure about this one, feeling like it might be only average.
Not going to lie. This one looks like trash. Just play the PS games it's based on. Or just go find yourself some actual porn, not this half-assed shit.
Tsurune: Kazemai Koukou Kyuudoubu
This anime seems to heavily focus on male friendships. The sensitive protagonist loves kyuudo, the Japanese martial art of archery. But as the trailer shows, he's not that good at it. But it seems that he will persist in his dream anyway, helped by friends, and beset by the jerk rival character who's in every anime. Looks sweet and sentimental. I will probably give it a shot. Pun intended.
Double Decker! Doug & Kirill
Judging by the trailer, it kind of looks like it might be fun. It's a gunslinger sci-fi adventure. The jazz in the trailer calls to mind the intros of Cowboy Bebop and Baccano!, so it seems like the kind of anime that may appeal to fans of that kind of show. I'm feeling a 'maybe' here - impressive visuals may mean the story is also good, or they might just be like spraying an expensive perfume to cover up a fart. Only time will tell. This one seems to have a pulse though, a kind of life energy in it, which is refreshing and nice.
The Girl in Twilight
The music, voice acting, and visuals in the trailer were emotionally stirring. This show seems to be a mature exploration of the magical girl theme, without being as (hopefully) grim-dark as some of the lamer attempts at doing that. Oh God, the music!
DAKAICHI - I'm being harassed by the sexiest man of the year.
Your yaoi man-service of the year has arrived, straight gals. I don't know what the plot is, but I want 8 seasons of it - and a poster for my bedroom.
Senran Kagura Second Season
This looks like a lot of tits bouncing but who cares. I mean, the trailer looks good, the character design looks good, and the music in the trailer sounds good. But it doesn't seem like much is going on in terms of storytelling, and I didn't see much that we haven't seen already in better anime.
Jingai-san no Yome
An ordinary high school boy suddenly is told he has to become the wife of a weird fluffy monster... thing? Ok. It looks adorably silly, and the premise should make for some interesting comedy. Perhaps it will be a parody of 'magical girlfriend' anime.
Ace Attorney: Season 2
I played the first Ace Attorney game, and gave it a kind of affectionate C+. It's not legally that realistic; perhaps it is more so in Japan, but it just seemed like my 'trials don't work that way' voice in the back of my head kept nagging me. It seemed like a goofy, juvenile game that was an OK way to kill time. But it wasn't my favorite game. But the games got a huge cult following, and so it made sense that a manga and then an anime adaptation followed. I was not that enthralled by the first volume of the manga, which I own, so I was never interested in the anime. Sorry Ace Attorney fans! It's simply not my thing. It's like a panda bear. It's cute and all, but I don't want to take it home with me.
Sora to Umi no Aida
It's cute girls, fishing, in space. Yep. This happened. I actually think this could be interesting. I want to see if I'll end up liking and rooting for the characters, or if they'll all end up being stereotypes and clichés I've already seen a million times.
As Ms. Beelzebub Likes It.
Another anime that cutifies the concept of Satan and/or devils/demons. Just the thing I need, how nice.
I wondered for a long time why there wasn't a cheer-leading anime. I liked cheerleading as a kid, before my experience of it was soured by bitchiness, elitism, and personal politics. But as a form of dance and exercise, I still retain a fondness for the sport. And since I was once in love with the movie Bring it On, I wouldn't mind a cute anime involving cheer drama. That being said, I'm not sure about this anime. The girls look too cute, and too nice, and too generic. Cheerleading, at least in the US, is cutthroat and catty. I may enjoy an anime where it's just cute girls doing cute cheerleading, but this looks too sunny and therefore devoid of any compelling conflict or drama. In other words, it feels safe and too nice. I want to see an anime that deals with the pain of it as well.
A school sports rivalry emerges between characters that act and talk like historical warlords of feudal Japan. It looks funny. Kind of like Hetalia in that it's a satire of history. But it's not looking like it will be great.
Sono Toki, Kanojo wa.
This anime's synopsis says it will have four female protagonists, and will follow their lives in high school, college, and as adults. But that's all I have to go on, and the trailer seemed a little boring. The synopsis and trailer don't answer the critical question, why should I care about these four female characters and their lives? Will I want to follow them? Will it interest me? What will I get out of this? It's sort of vague and the girls just look like illustrations, not people.
The source material being an otome game, basically a fanservice game for straight girls, you can expect some cute guys here. You have a weird, time-twisting plot and a need to save the world. Is there substance in this style? I guess I'll find out.
It looks cute. I like the concept of having a lot of different people with different personalities and superpowers share a house. I like the art style from what I could see in the trailer. It has a fresh, interesting, lively feel to it.
Merc Storia: Mukiryoku no Shounen to Bin no Naka no Shoujo
It looks like a typical cutesy fantasy adventure anime. It looks cute, but it doesn't seem to offer anything that special to people who have already seen and read a lot of fantasy.
Hangyakusei Million Arthur
The synopsis: "Based on Square Enix's massively multi-player online role-playing game." Is enough to make me lose interest. But the trailer is also horrendously annoying. Yeah I think I won't miss much if I pass on this one. Next?
The Night When Me and My Boss Spent the Night at the Capsule Hotel After the Last Train and He Passed His Fever to Me
Rated R+? Mild nudity? Sounds hot. Sounds in fact, like everything I want in a 'smutty' romance story. Could be very promising for people into that sort of thing. They could have used a friend's opinion to help with the title.
Ken En Ken: Aoki Kagayaki
It looks like a tale of magic and swords, set in a fantasy kingdom populated by clock-punk robot monsters and beautiful fighting maidens. I may give it a chance, but I didn't find the trailer super exciting.
Kitsune no Koe
This anime is about male singers, and looks pretty cute, while also showing interesting personal drama. It looks pretty good.
Uchuu Senkan Tiramisù II
This trailer made this seem like the kind of dramatic sci-fi action anime I normally like. I may want to start with the first season, but I will definitely put this on my list.
Hashiri Tsuzukete Yokattatte.
I'm going to be honest but, this one looks awful. Judging by the trailer, anyway. The issue I have is that a bland pop song plays over a relatively boring trailer. They don't show anything particularly unusual, dramatic, or suspenseful happening in the trailer. The trailer failed to interest me in any way.
Inazuma Eleven: Orion no Kokuin
It looks like a soccer anime, and I have no interest in soccer. But I have to admit, I am digging the creative art style and diversity of the character designs.
This is an anime about a penguin, and that's all I need to know.
Gurazeni: Season 2
Gurazeni is a sports anime, and I don't watch sports anime as a general rule. It's not that I think the genre is bad, I just don't like sports, so anime about sports aren't appealing to me. It looks like a decent anime for baseball fans, and the characters look appealing and relatable, not the generic cutie cutouts you see in a lot of anime. Definitely would recommend but, not to myself.
The iDOLM@STER SideM: Wake Atte Mini!
Looks like a series of chibi shorts, a spinoff of the previous anime iDOLM@STER. In order to be hyped, I'd have to have watched iDOLM@STER. But it looks cute for fans of the original show.
Source for Anime Titles and Info: My Anime List
- Fall 2018 - Anime - MyAnimeList.net
Looking for information on the current or upcoming anime season? MyAnimeList has got you covered! Join the online community, create your anime and manga list, read reviews, explore the forums, follow news, and so much more!
Note: These are based on information available by Oct. 10, 2018. If a show hasn't released much information yet, it may not make these superlatives, even if it would end up having done so. For example, for some shows I may not be able to hear the opening song yet, and such shows can't make Best Music/Sound.
I intend to do a follow-up to this. I will pick 10 of these shows to watch and report back on (listed below).
Most Hyped - Sequel, Spinoff, or Remake:
The one with the most fans, the most people excited about it, and the most chit-chat on internet forums. For anime based on, remaking, a new season of, or a remake of, a previously existing anime.
Sword Art Online: Alicization
Most-Hyped - Original:
The same, but for strictly new anime, not remakes, sequels, spinoffs, or new seasons of older anime.
My favorite. Because I'm the writer here.
Best Art & Character Design:
Again, pretty self-explanatory. The one where the characters look the coolest, and the art and animation look good as well. Looking for shows that surpass expected anime character design clichés, creating characters that look original as well as interesting and emotionally moving.
My 10 Picks to Watch:
These will be the ones I choose to watch entirely this season. They will be reviewed and I will do a follow-up article discussing if I was right or wrong about them.
- Zombieland Saga
- SSSS. Gridman
- Sora to Umi no Aida
- ...Capsule Hotel ...
- Ms. Vampire...
- The Girl in Twilight
- Double Decker!...
- Rascal ... Bunny Girl
- Goblin Slayer
- Boarding School Juliet
I may choose other anime above, but those 10 I'll definitely be watching soon.
Please let me know which one you're most excited about for this season!
Which Fall 2018 Anime Do You Like The Most So Far? Comment Below!
Questions & Answers
© 2018 Rachael Lefler