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Anime 2022 Weekly Episode Reviews #1

Welcome, ladies and gentlemen and everyone else! This is the first edition of a new blog series I am starting. It covers episode reviews of 7 anime series from 2022 and 1 anime series from 2021. Some of these series have already finished airing, but they are still new to me. Without further ado, let's get to it!


1) Shadows House: Episode 1

I felt skeptical as usual going into this series, and will probably continue approaching it critically due to certain elements. Nevertheless, I truly enjoyed the first episode. Cloverworks studio has relatively few series so far, so I'm excited to see if this series they produced is good. So far the artwork and animation are good, the music is great, and the voice actresses are doing a splendid job. I'm a big ReoNa fan, so I was thrilled to hear her sing the outro song. The main characters both seem promising. They are also very cute.

There's no doubt Shadows House is unsettling, even though it's not horror or thriller and is only rated PG-13. If a series can pull off being eerie with its opening concepts alone, and doesn't even need to use thematic elements of horror, it's impressive. What are the Shadows, and what is their relationship to normal humans? Are the Life Dolls really artificially created, or are they actually human children? In either case, it's a bit disturbing to see Emilyko so happy in the position of a slave. She's clearly sentient, and is getting no compensation for her forced role. I'm looking forward to where this series goes from here.


2) Spy X Family: Episode 1

Wit and Cloverworks studios have partnered to make Spy x Family. I very much enjoyed the first episode. There's a lot of funny humor, some good action, and a likeable enough main character. In addition, there's plenty of cuteness thank to Anya. She is the most adorable little girl I've seen in anime in a long, long time. I find it interesting that there is some supernatural stuff in this series. Anya is a psychic who can read minds. If psychics exist, what else could be out there waiting in this anime? Even if there isn't a lot of supernatural, however, I'm still highly interested. I like the spy vibe and the jazzy music too. This show is sure to be lots of fun!


3) Summertime Rendering: Episode 1

I'm psyched over the first episode of Summertime Render. It was a great opening episode with just the right pacing and amount of exposition. The art and animation look beautiful. The characters are a little nondescript so far, but there's plenty of time to develop them. The concept of the Shadow Sickness is thrilling. The ending of the episode was nuts. This anime so far feels like the love child of Re:Zero and Higurashi no Naku Koro ni. It's like Re:Zero or Steins;gate because the main character can retry at life after dying. It's like Higurashi because of the rural setting and mysterious supernatural occurrences. I'm looking forward to more thrill and chaos in the next episode.

Even though I can safely say I'm intrigued, I got pretty annoyed at two points. Summertime Rendering felt the need to include a boob-to-the-face "accident," along with a panty-shot of Mio (a minor). Both things were unnecessary, stupid tropes. Talk about not having confidence in your own story's hook. Imagine needing an ecchi accident or a panty-shot to reel in an audience. That's just disgusting, and sad. The story hook was good enough without needing that kind of pandering to perverts. Clearly, there are going to be some issues with Summertime Rendering. However, I'm more than willing to keep watching it for now due to the exciting mystery.


4) Tokyo 24th Ward: Episode 1

It seems like I unintentionally picked all the Cloverworks anime series to watch for 2022. I didn't know Tokyo 24 was done by Cloverworks until I started watching it. I noticed that on, this show has a pretty low rating of about 6.6/10. I'm interested to know why a show got such a low score when it has a decent premise, superpowers, and excellent animation. The production seems good all around. The music was great and they got well-known, experienced seiyuu to do some of the voices. I'll definitely keep watching Tokyo 24 for now, but not simply because I want to know the reason for the low ranking. I'm also personally interested in this anime so far.

I am not much of a superhero fan. Tokyo 24 deals with superpowers in its three main characters. But surprisingly, I like it so far. There's enough interpersonal interactions and sci-fi to make it not feel like a "superhero show." Yes, it was cringe whenever Shu said he was a hero, but I can deal with it in exchange for the other aspects this anime has to offer. In the first episode, they dealt with a problem roughly based on the trolley problem. I'm a psychology nerd, so I appreciate the reference to the classic dilemma. There's that, plus the promise of some sci-fi, which I like a lot. The first episode was a big success in my book!


5) Hoshi no Samidare

(Lucifer and The Biscuit Hammer): Episode 1

Straight up, I'm must say I love this anime's introduction. I have a certain love for nonsense and comical absurdity. If it's mixed in with fantasy, that's even better. When an episode starts with a dead-serious talking lizard telling a boy to help save the world, I know I'm going to like it. A giant hammer in the sky is going to destroy the planet? Meh, I'll ignore it. Unless a little devil wants me to swear fealty to her and help fight it. Then I'll consider getting off my ass.

Most of the humor succeeded in being funny to me, except the part where Yuuhi blew up the teacher's skirt, of course. Besides that childish and invasive prank, he seems like a highly amusing character. He's actually pretty witty. I'm also interested in the character of Samidare, AKA Little Lucifer. Strong-willed and unique female characters appeal to me, and perhaps even more if they are short like me. My only concern is that the series will sexualize this character in the future. We'll see. Overall, it was a really fun first episode.


6) Hataraku Maou-sama season 2: Episode 1

It's a little strange to have this anime coming back after so many years, but I'm looking forward to it. I remember the characters and story details well enough to not need to re-watch the first season. Unfortunately, to be honest, the first episode of season 2 was kind of a drag. The animation and audio were great as usual, but the humor was mostly swings and misses for me. There were so many overused, predictable jokes I've seen in dozens of other series. Nothing creative.

Some of the jokes were also in poor taste. Haha let's make a joke out of the fat character because he's fat and being fat = being funny! Also, girls in real life don't care nearly as much about boob size as the anime boys think. It's not some hypersensitive subject we worry about. When female characters get angry about their boobs being compared to others, it's just annoying. Try a joke that has a basis in reality, maybe. Anyway, it's not too big of deal. It's only the first episode. Perhaps the humor will improve. We'll see.


7) Sasaki and Miyano: Episode 1

Besides some relatively minor annoyances, the first episode of SasaMiya was pretty good. I'll go through the annoyances first. I'm a little tired of the "uke" character being so petite and cute that he's almost taken for a girl. If it only happened in the occasional BL anime, that would be fine. But it's basically every one of them. I'm tired of it. It's not that I don't like Miyano, but I wish that sometimes there was an "uke" as masculine as the "seme." As for Sasaki, he seems like a really good, original "seme" character. He's very amusing to me. To be honest, I was expecting to hate SasaMiya right off the bat, but so far, it's not much of a problem. It was just cute stuff. I look forward to covering episode 2 next week.


8) Tomodachi game: Episode 6

I wrote about episodes 1-5 of Tomodachi game at my old blog. You can click here if you want to read my thoughts. My view of the series is most definitely negative. I find much of Tomodachi game stupid. But you know what? It's one of those shows where it's so bad that it's funny. So, I decided to keep watching and pick up where I left off. Yuuichi has exposed the traitor and is explaining how he did it. The explanation process took over ten minutes and was ridiculously over-the-top. It was somewhat impressive what Yuuchi did, but the way the show explains it and over-dramatizes makes it comical.

The twist that Yuuichi has killed people before was hardly a surprise, but I don’t claim to know the details yet. It’s just that I predicted he was a killer the moment he told the lie about Shibe killing someone. It was also very predictable that everyone started doubting him and the drama picked up. Can we talk about how Kokorogi was crying, hugging her knees, and calling for her parents? Isn’t that a bit much for a stress reaction?

Anyway, we finally arrive at the last twist of the episode. I can’t say I expected to see a gay kiss in this series. It’s possible that Tenji isn’t really gay, but simply wanted to continue the game by any means necessary. That’s what I’m expecting. If it turns out, however, that he really is gay and loves Yuuichi, I won’t be happy about that, either. With all the demonization of Tenji, it’s clear this show wants you to know he is a creepy “bad guy.” I’m really not down with making the badguys gay every time. Way to ruin a chance at good representation! Tomodachi Game continues to make me want to shoot my own foot! I’ll keep watching more intense cringe and disappointment next time!


Thanks for Reading

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