The Infinite Zenith

Where insights on anime, games, academia and life dare to converge

Winter 2014 Anime

A mere two months after the Fall 2013 anime preview was listed, the winter 2014 preview is now out. We casually note that the fall season hasn’t even begun yet, and at present, my mind is on anything other than the Winter 2014 offerings, including what is to air in a few days, as well as coursework and applications that will act as stepping stones into employment and of course, Battlefield 4: having confirmed my GPU will run the game at 1080p on high settings, I look forward to its release and may opt to buy a physical copy as the opportunity presents itself. However, for the present, I apologise to people looking up Winter 2014 anime and getting stuck with my 2013 previews here: here is the poster of the shows that will be expected to kick off 2014.

I previously noted that of the available offerings, there were no shows that caught my interest. On closer inspection, there are presently three series I plan on watching Toaru Hikuushi e no Koiuta, Saki Zenkoku-hen and SoniAniSuper Sonico The Animation-. I believe these three shows offer a good spread of content: I’m especially interested in seeing what Toaru Hikuushi e no Koiuta has to offer, and for the present, I have some serious catch-up to do in Saki before I can begin the second season, but this has happened before: upon hearing about second seasons and so on, I do catch up quickly enough (think OreImo and Infinite Stratos), although here, I hope that catching up with an interesting series doesn’t result in the series burning out as previously experienced. As for Super Sonico: The Animation, all I am at liberty to say is that it could and probably will add some zeal to the blog. Earlier readers may have noticed that I was planning to watch Wake Up, Girls!, but my interest in the series waned, and I probably won’t be following it from the start (although as the season wears on, that may change).

Wake up, Girls!
Green Leaves Entertainment is a tiny production company on the verge of going out of business in Sendai, the biggest city in Japan’s northeastern Tohoku region. The agency once managed the careers of magicians, photo idols, fortune-tellers, and other entertainers, but its last remaining client finally quit. With their talent pool depleted, the president Tange decides to produce an idol group. On the brash president’s orders, the dissatisfied manager Matsuda heads out to scout raw talent, encountering one Mayu Shimada.

  • The events in wake up, Girls! are said to be set in the Tokohu region; director Yutaka Yamamoto (of Lucky Star and Kannagi) noted the anime is directly intended to raise tourism and expedite recovery efforts after the 2011 Tokohu Earthquake and Tsunami devastated the area. The selection process for the voice actors playing the seven idols in the anime were chosen from amateur ranks through an open audition with more than 2,000 applicants, similar to the anime. At the present, the anime is looking to be one of the most interesting of the 2014 line, and I’ll likely watch it once Winter 2014 actually rolls around.

Toaru Hikuushi e no Koiuta

After a revolution stripped Prince Kalel Albus of both his parents and his humanity,  blinded by hatred and revenge, he sets off on a journey to avenge his parents and himself. However, upon taking to the skies and the floating islands that grace it, he finds not revenge, but compassion, friendship, and love, upon encountering a girl called Claire who happens to be the symbol of the very revolution he hates. In a story of aerial combat, the good and bad of romance, and transformation of the heart, Prince Kalel will find that what he was looking for was not revenge, but rather, forgiveness.

      • If things go well, I foresee an incredible world of air combat, adventure and discovery set in a fantastical world. I absolutely love anime set in fantastical worlds, and though I was late to the party with Valkyria Chronicles, I did enjoy the way things were set-up: solid world-building contributes substantially to an anime’s capacity to immerse and captivate the viewers, and from those tenants,  this show looks to be very promising.

Saki Zenkoku-hen

Miyanaga Saki was a high school freshman who didn’t like mahjong, until her childhood friend dragged her to Kiyosumi High School’s mahjong club and her love for the game was reborn. Now she and the rest of the Kiyosumi team – including prodigy Haramura Nodoka (Koshimizu Ami), reckless club president Takei Hisa, Hisa’s meganekko best friend Someya Mako, and the rambunctious and taco-loving Kataoka Yuuki – have fought their way through regionals to earn their place in the National Inter High School Mahjong Championships. They need to make it all the way to the championships so Saki can try to reconcile with her estranged older sister (and the reigning champion) Miyanaga Teru, but there will be plenty of tough competition along the way.

      • I don’t know how to play Mahjong, nor have I seen this series previously at the time of writing. This means I will turn my machine’s substantial video conversion powers towards turning this anime into something I can watch on a mobile device and help me catch up.  For parties wondering, the image above is official art, and if I were to be entirely honest, I am partially compelled to watch Saki for interesting character dynamics between Saki and Nodoka as much as for the supernatural mahjong and Girls und Panzer-like atmosphere.

SoniAni -Super Sonico The Animation-

Super Sonico is the pink haired mascot of the visual novel company Nitroplus and now appears in her own animation, which is centred around Sonico’s exciting daily life, centering around her blooming musical endeavors, modeling career, and friendships. She is accompanied by her two friends Fujimi Suzu and Watanuki Fuuri, both of whom also have a knack for music with the bass and drums respectively, in her adventures and together, they will form friendships while also promoting the Nitroplus (stylised “Nitro+”) brand.

    • I predict an anime that’s going to have very little in the way of a centralised story but may be quite pleasing to watch nonetheless (if only for the fanservice). Between modelling (not the design of computer models), concerts and everyday life, this anime may have a K-On!-esque feel to it, which would make it quite entertaining to watch, preferably far from other observers. From a blogging perspective, I’ll try and keep up to date with SoniAni and Toaru Hikuushi e no Koiuta, while Saki will be blogged as time permits. Ordinarily, I think that just blogging about  Toaru Hikuushi e no Koiuta would be sufficient, but there are certain elements in SoniAni (namely, how hot Sonico is) that should make blogging it worthwhile.

16 responses to “Winter 2014 Anime

  1. ninetybeats October 1, 2013 at 00:53

    Fall season has barely started and we already know a great amount that will air in Winter haha.
    Judging from the included chart I think Sakura Trick looks interesting(it seems Yuri so should be fun xd). Wake Up, Girls! seems to have an interesting concept. Of course Nisekoi, I wonder what Shaft will make out of that. That’s about it at first glance.

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  2. medievalotaku October 1, 2013 at 12:28

    Yeah, this season looks surprisingly uninteresting. Mahou Sensou almost looks like it’s worthy of being watched, expect that it’s probably filled with cliches. Well, being behind with both books and anime and the fact that the fall season is jam packed with interesting shows, I can’t say that I’m unhappy with a dull winter season.

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  3. majorfoley November 23, 2013 at 00:13

    whats the one between the two wake up girl pictures? 2nd from bottom right above the bd/dvd/ova/specials title

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  4. Nate Kitt 3rd December 30, 2013 at 19:13

    I’m watching a show not listed called Zetsumetsu Kigu Shoujo: Amazing Twins. Who makes these posters and how do you know when they update? I tried to have one for every season for every year since 2008, but feat that I have incomplete ones.

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  5. Zephuros January 2, 2014 at 05:50

    For now, I’m interested/have been waiting for these new anime for the upcoming winter season:
    [Jan 05] Noragami
    [Jan 06] D-Fragments
    [Jan 08] Chuunibyou Demo Koi ga Shitai! Ren
    [Jan 09] Silver Spoon S2
    [Jan 09] Sakura Trick *SMIRKS*
    [Jan 09] Pupa *sadistic smirks*
    [Jan 10] Wake Up, Girls!
    [Jan 11] Nisekoi
    anyways… i really REALLY hope the list stays as minimal and less like this… I hope I won’t be interested in more of them (it’s going to give me less time for other stuffs… orz”)
    since I viewed these from the compiled winter 2014 anime from YT.. in which a lot of the animes’ PVs weren’t able to show there yet
    reaaaaaaally hope the list for the new animes will be just this.. .PLEASE… I need to go back to gaming….. lack of gamings from the previous months are killin’ me .___.”

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    • infinitezenith January 2, 2014 at 21:18

      My trick is to pick two to four shows that I know I’ll watch the beginnings to, then pick up to four more shows I may watch, and dive into the season, dropping and picking up things within both sets depending on how it turns out. Typically, if there’s no “first episode impressions” here, it could mean I watched something, didn’t like it and wouldn’t finish it: stuff that gets a mid-season talk typically will be finished and discussed😛

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      • Zephuros January 2, 2014 at 21:34

        Ha ha, well that’s what I should do, but then I was able to accept more and more lately (it’s kinda annoying now that I stopped being a shut-in and close-minded xD”) so there’s a lot that took my interest xD
        Well I do hope some of those in my list will disappoint or bores me to hell with its first few episodes so I can drop them :D” (probably hard.. since any of the manga-originals, I already knew all of them already before it was adapted…lols”)

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  6. Wild Goose January 2, 2014 at 09:04

    For me, I find Toaru Hikuushi to be interesting – stylistically it evokes “Memoir of a Distant Pilot” (I THINK that was the title, it was a light novel turned into an anime movie about a guy flying a recon seaplane fighter with a princess in his back seat and stuff. Must remember to finish reading when I’m not Warframing.) I will probably watch it, along with Robot Girls Z, just for the heck of it.

    I’m also interested in Wizard Barristers, just because the PV was charisma as hell and because it looks interesting enough (like a cross between Dresden Files and Ace Attorney.) I probably would have stuck with law if my future would have been that fun, lol! :p

    And maybe I’ll just watch Buddy Complex, if only because the girl on the poster looks like an expy of Setsuko Ohara from SRW Z.

    …maybe you’ve got a spot open for a guest blogger, infinite? ;D

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    • infinitezenith January 2, 2014 at 17:39

      I might just check out Robot Girls Z, if only to stick it to those who believe that only life-changing, through-provoking stories (in any medium) are worth following. That is partially why I am going to watch SoniAni: Super Sonico The Animation.

      As for guest blogging, I’ve been wondering about that, myself. On one hand, I like to keep things consistent in tones and style, but on the other, having extra writers would be quite nice, providing content beyond what one writer can pull off. If I were to open the site for guest writers, for the present, I would probably request that blog posts and drafts to be submitted by email, and then I would post them myself after formatting them, with an opening note at the top that this is a guest post. As for the more permanent co-authors, I haven’t thought things through that far yet😉

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      • Wild Goose January 2, 2014 at 20:46

        Well, I’m not entirely sure I could match your tone and style, but I wouldn’t mind giving a stab at things – though you’re right that an audition is required.😉 (Pls, that would require some of these shows air. Unless I guest blog about Ars Nova…)

        And there’s always a place for life-changing thought-provoking stories… but sometimes you just want to sit down and eat potato chips. :p

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        • infinitezenith January 2, 2014 at 21:14

          Style and tone vary from author to author: the only guideline I would enforce is the structuring, which is that paragraphs are interspersed with images, such as for the Non Non Biyori reflection/review. The pictures and figure captions appear to be a signature style that I’d like to keep. Of course, as noted previously, if you are interested, sending me a writing sample (such as on Ars Nova) would be a good way to get a guest feature🙂

          I’ll work out the logistics behind more long-term writers if there is sufficient interest in this direction, and I imagine my criterion will be similar to those of other blogging sites. Incidentally, I do have a place for those life-changing, thought-provoking stories under the general discussion sections, although their content is sparse because I typically talk about these things elsewhere and prefer not to trouble readers with things rolling in life (unless delicious buffalo wings and poutine is involved, for instance).

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  7. Wild Goose January 2, 2014 at 09:06

    Having said that, I find that I spent much of 2013 watching crime time dramas, like Person of Interest, Arrow, The Blacklist, Castle, Agents of SHIELD, The Closer, Major Crimes… I may have lost my anime credentials and will need to regain them.

    And yeah, to everyone, if you haven’t gotten Valkyria Chronicles yet, give it a try. VC2 got a PSP US release, and VC3 just got a fan translation out last week. And best part is that if you have a rig that runs Mass Effect 3 or BF3 or BF4, your rig will run PSP emulation.😄

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