In a comparison of each half of this decade, I can probably safely say I have completed more in this half than in the malaise era first half. So it came as a bit of a surprise that in the middle of it I actually managed my lowest total of completions. In fact, only one of these two items was watched during the actual season. Plus, it was absolutely awful. Some good did come out of it all about a year later when I added the other one.
In the midst of what was probably the biggest drop slaughter I would ever go through in an entire season, I took the time to watch the Happiness! OVA De-Lucks something that isn’t worth the effort to write out. Basically Jun turns into a girl in some freak accident, every other male at school turns into a caveman and well it’s just really an utter waste of time.
Then there’s Gakuen Utopia Manabi Straight! which is an absolute classic of its genre by comparison. The character designs are a bit childish, but this was probably the only piece of fiction this decade that had me thinking about the concepts of social capital in combination with population decline in a practical way. It is rather peculiar to see a society shaped by labor shortages to the extent of this one in a slice-of-life anime, but I digress. The tone of the whole series is generally upbeat and mainly about getting people to come together to work on something larger. It’s not the greatest story out there, but it finally made the whole slice-of-life genre mean something to me beyond the works of James Joyce and wonderfully artistic manga sans plot.
Highlights from Unseen or Unfinished Items
Freedom may just be the best Cup Noodle pushing, with a good soundtrack anime ever made. That’s probably also the only Cup Noodle pushing, good soundtrack anime ever made. Winter Garden takes the two main characters from DiGi Charat and puts them in a school romance drama-type story. Afro Samurai I think was supposed to be the 25th time that multi-national productions were supposed to start becoming frequent…now that I think more about it, it may not have taken off after all. Shuffle! Memories was nothing more than a showcase of editing clips together involving a single character at a time. Nodame Cantabile is supposed to be really good. And there’s some token Suigintou back story in the Rozen Maiden: Ouvertüre OVA.