Winter 2021 Anime Predictions — Otherside Picnic and LasDan
Since I’ve been too busy to write proper reviews about last season’s anime yet, I figured I’d try something a little different and a lot quicker. I took two series I knew nothing about and tried to predict what their series would be like based solely on the description and promo image. Then I watched the episode and compared the results. Please let me know if you want more articles like this, and don’t forget to share your thoughts in the comments.
The description and promo image pretty much screams “Yuri SciFi” to me. Stylistically I expect decent character development and minimal fan service. While I expect some fighting the focus is more likely to be on exploring the Otherside and growing the two main character’s relationship.
As expected we were quickly introduced to the two very different main characters. We have Sorawo, who I expect would be very mopey and antisocial even if she wasn’t facing death, and a very bubbly Toriko who rescues her while searching for someone. Unsurprisingly Toriko seems to instantly become attached to Sorawo, while Sorawo avoids her before eventually relenting and giving her a chance. So far it supports my prediction that it would focus on the relationship, and we already saw (minor) character development in the first episode. My suspicions of Yuri were also more or less directly confirmed when Toriko declares them partners and says “Partners in crime is the most intimate relationship there is.” The fairly slow pacing and minimal fight scenes further supports my prediction that it will focus on the characters instead of the events.
While I am curious about the next episode, and the premise that internet creepypasta can be found in the Otherside, I doubt this is a series I will continue watching. The pacing was slower than I wanted and I’m not terribly attached to the characters. While I loved the post apocalyptic vibe of the Otherside, it did not mesh well with the psychedelic visuals during the Wiggle-Waggle right. As I prefer more realistic art, if that continues in the next episode it will definitely put me off from the series. We will see if my opinion changes next week, but for now I give it three out of five stars.
Suppose a Kid from the Last Dungeon Boonies moved to a starter town? (LasDan)
One glance at this series and my trope alarm started screaming. The promo image is massively generic with our main character’s future harem and potential rival. The title is overly descriptive and very familiar to anyone who’s watched a fantasy series before. I’ve lost track of the times I’ve seen or read a series where a character thinks they are weak when they are actually absurdly strong. The first episode will undoubtedly establish his relative weakness and insecurity in his home village. Then, depending on pacing, we will likely see his journey to the city and learn about his unreasonable accomplishments which he takes for granted. Eventually someone will take him under their wing only to realize he’s far superior to them. Following that the harem building will truly begin.
The episode begins with main character Llyod failing to catch a bunny. His big brother then arrives and easily dispatches it. Then we time jump to a teenage Lloyd showing up at a witch’s house with dreams of being a soldier. This witch is in fact an apprentice of the (“loli-grandma”) head of his village. As expected the episode very quickly establishes that Lloyd is an innocent soul, and that his expectations about the world are horribly off base. He considers dangerous monsters to be merely animals and casually uses a complex disenchant rune on his handkerchief for cleaning.
Once Lloyd’s innocence is firmly established we meet his future harem members and mentor/rival character. The characters are fairly standard, such as the “Belt Princess” who falls in love with him because he saves her and breaks her curse, the money oriented mercenary (who finds Lloyd terrifying), a nobleman with a battleaxe from an established military family, and a scattering of other familiar stereotype characters. It also has a standard “tryout scene” and then ends with Lloyd being depressed when he can’t find his name on the bulletin board for people who passed. Although we know it was either a simple oversight, or that he couldn’t find it because he was valedictorian, it still provides a hook for the second episode.
VERY generic, there are probably dozens of series using this formula. This series is literally a collection of familiar tropes. It wasn’t bad, it wasn’t good, it was strictly average. I expect I’ll watch the entire season and then promptly forget about it. Three out of Five stars.
Thanks for reading! I’d love to hear your thoughts and recommendations!