So initially, Tofu added Romeo x Juliet to our rotation because the opening theme is a redone version of “You Raise Me Up” and it was one of the funniest things imaginable. Imagine our surprise when it turns out to actually be a pretty freakin’ great show (unless you’re Matt)!
There’s a lot to talk about with an anime adaptation of Shakespeare’s play Romeo and Juliet – how it plays around with the source material in interesting ways, how it sets itself apart from the original, how the language you watch the show in changes the entire feel of the series – and man, do we talk about it. We had some words about the show (and each other’s opinions about the show), so trust us when we say that this is an episode well worth listening to.
The fall 2020 anime season has decided to be merciful to us – it has deigned to not be full of complete and utter suffering shows, unlike its predecessor, which is great. However, there was a price to be paid for this. There is now just too much anime! As a result, we…just go over a bunch of it and probably only hit about half of the shows that are actually airing this season. Kamisama help us all.
Unsurprisingly, with such a huge amount of shows airing this season (or with things just getting back to a normal fall season airing load), we’ve got a lot of great stuff to cover. We gush about how much of a mood Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is, the unbridled joy (or newly brided joy?) of TONIKAWA: Over the Moon for You, some surprising hits of the season such as Akudama Drive, Warlords of Sigrdrifa, and Moriarty the Patriot, and we even manage to get in some discussion about the surprising (and not surprising) additions to our drop piles, like Assault Lily: BOUQUET and Noblesse. This is a packed one, so strap in, get comfy, and enjoy the ride!
Get your band-aids and tissues ready, because the end of the Summer 2020 anime season has come out swinging. And good god, is it swinging hard.
Thankfully, we’re able to talk about the fun (read as: not as bleak on a weekly basis) stuff, like Appare-Ranman!, Deca-Dence, and Rent-a-Girlfriend, before we got back into the Suffering Zone, the Sequel, which is still sponsored by Re:Zero and OreGairu. Seriously, though, there was a incredible amount of good shows this season, and you’ll be kicking yourself if you don’t give them the shots they deserve. Get on in here!
Okay, so Welcome to the N.H.K. might not have been the best choice for our last podcast, given the whole, you know, staying inside and existential dread thing. This time around, though, I don’t think we could have gotten a better show! We watched Rokuhoudou Yotsuiro Biyori, a heartwarming show about four dudes running a teahouse/cafe. If that sounds like a chill show with not much going on, you would be absolutely correct, and my god, did we need it.
Rokuhoudou Yotsuiro Biyori, having come out in 2018, is a show that all three of us didn’t even know existed, and we are here to atone for that crime. Even though the premise is simple and easy to digest, the show has a lot of layers, and we dig deep into them! Tofu gets in way too deep about food as narrative and narrative as food (it’s a show about a cafe, bro, chill), we have a surprisingly fruitful comparison of Rokuhoudou and Isekai Shokudou, and Kyle almost ends everyone by conjuring the ghostly image of a shonen food battle anime that uses Gatorade in all of its meals. Yeah, it’s a surprising amount of mileage on this one, so check it out!
Looking back on the rotation of shows we have on the docket for this podcast, it might not have been the best idea to watch Welcome to the N.H.K., a show about a hikikomori who can hardly leave his home due to crippling anxiety and depression, during a time where we can all hardly leave our homes, which is leading us to crippling anxiety and depression. Life comes at you fast, huh?
Despite the fact that the premise of Welcome to the N.H.K. is for sure a huge bummer, it’s a genuinely beautiful series that’s able to balance out its crushing moments of despair with some excellently punctuated comedy, and realistic, no-bs moments of genuine, heartwarming hope. There’s many reasons that people consider the show to be a masterpiece and a classic, and by the end of our discussion, we 100% agree. You might not want to watch it while we’re all quarantined and a little more on edge than normal, but then again, maybe this is the perfect time to watch it. Regardless of when, all we ask of you is that you absolutely do watch Welcome to the N.H.K. (And also listen to our podcast about it. You’re already here!)
Okay, so it’s time for some good news, bad news. The bad news is that, due to obvious circumstances, the Summer 2020 season of anime is a bit shorter on shows than it would normally be. The good news is that there is still a ton of great stuff to watch, despite the delays in production, etc.
We do get to talk about a bit of a mixed bag of shows for the season: we mercifully get all of the laughably bad horny shows out of the way first, we all take a collective trip to the suffering zone, sponsored by Re:Zero and OreGairu, and we bask in the glory of beautiful shows like The God of High School and hilariously dumb shows like The Misfit of Demon King Academy. Don’t do yourself the disservice of skipping out on this season – hop on in, get some recommendations, and enjoy the season!
It’s hard to believe that the Spring 2020 anime season, which never really felt like it got to truly start due to the whole pandemic business, is finally over. Despite all that, it really ended with a bang, because MAN, it still had a ton of great shows to offer.
Unsurprisingly, good shows bring out great talking points in this episode: we get to exorcise our strong feelings about Sing “Yesterday” For Me, Zack makes the bold claim that Brand New Animal is “a show done by Studio Trigger”, and Matt forcefully takes the discussion into his own hands to say that DADDY! DADDY! DO! is, to quote, “pretty good”. Strap yourselves in, because we’ve got a lot coming your way!
Remember how it feels like we just talked about shows in digital worlds, or with an isekai plot, or some combination of those ideas? We just watched another one. It was an awful decision.
Death March to the Parallel World Rhapsody is a pretty decidedly “meh” fantasy MMO isekai harem series, and we had to watch all of it. It’s not all bad, of course – we get some pretty good discussion out of some of the show’s clever use of UI elements (until it starts to suck), for instance, or how the protagonist definitely isn’t the same guy as the protagonist in the other fantasy MMO isekai harem series. That being said, what you really want is the complete and utter beatdown that we give the show, and by god, do we give it to it. In a loving, constructive criticism sort of way, of course. Don’t watch the show, but do listen to us tell you why not to watch it.
Collectively as a group, we’ve watched a fair number of anime about digital and physical spaces, like .hack//Sign, Log Horizon, Serial Experiments Lain, and something about swords making art on the internet. But it’s pretty safe to say that we have yet to watch anything quite like Dennou Coil – a story about kids with really powerful augmented reality glasses tech that blurs the line between the physical and digital worlds.
Join us as we talk about some really, really bad computer viruses, tech from the show and world-building elements that we’d love to see more of in other series, and sentient facial hair (it’s actually related to the show, I swear).
The Winter 2020 season ended on quite a lot of strong notes! There were a lot of contenders for what we would talk about on this wrap-up cast, but for the sake of not having this take three hours, we had to narrow it down to some of the season’s best of the best. It’s not like we were doing much else during a global pandemic, but hey.
Although there have been a lot of delays due to obvious reasons, the Spring 2020 anime season is still coming out strong. We encounter a few minor confusions about what shows are what, but it’s all part of the trademark Backloggers charm, tee hee! Not to toot our own horn, but we’ve got some good stuff this episode: we get to explore the absolute trainwreck that is Tamayomi, we find out that Matt thought Wave, Listen to Me! and Sing “Yesterday” for Me were the same show, and, somewhat inevitably, we find out mid-recording that some shows we recommended to each other had been delayed.
Oh, and we talk about some absolute bangers from this season that haven’t been delayed (yet), like Kakushigoto and Tower of God. In short, it’s exactly the kind of anime content we need right now as the world continues to burn to the ground.