2015 has its fair share of unforgettable anime, great series, and beautiful stories.
Some of this year’s anime series have become really popular, from Kantai Collection to One Punch man to Himouto! Umaru-chan, all the way to Food Wars! Shokugeki no Soma, Prison School, GATE, and Fate/ Stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works. However, there are several great anime that have aired this year but you just didn’t take notice of them.
As 2015 is about to end, we present some titles which you might have missed out, as they have lived in the shadows of their respective seasons’ heavyweights.
Yuri Kuma Arashi
An anime directed by renowned director, Kunihiko Ikuhara (Sailor Moon, Mawaru Penguindrum Revolutionary Girl Utena), Yuri Kuma Arashi is an intellectual anime with many hidden meanings, all of which tackle the very sensitive nature of homosexuality and bullying.
The setting is pretty much like Attack on Titan, where bears suddenly become savage thanks to a meteor, and suddenly begin eating humans. This made humanity build a giant wall to keep the bears out. However, some bears seem to have infiltrated and passed themselves up as humans. The anime presents a school society which mirrors what is currently happening in schools today, which of course is bullying. The majority of the girls vote for which person to exclude from their society, and that person in turn gets shunned. Whoever does not comply with this is shunned as well.
The anime may not entirely be for everyone, as it involves some characters being “eaten” and a few twists and turns… and the fact that it is yuri and all, but the anime plays out very nicely as Ikuhara shows how nicely he reflects the world of Yuri Kuma Arashi to our world now. It has received much praise from the critics, however, was not as widely received by many like some of winter 2015’s heavyweights.
Special mention: Maria the Virgin Witch
This anime is most certainly underrated with its honest portrayal of medieval European society, and it certainly is unapologetic. A must watch if you haven’t seen this one already.
Show By Rock!!
Show By Rock!! has great music, lovable characters, and some great laughs.
The anime combines the elements of musicals, comedy, cute girl moe, and lovable bishounen idols beautifully, and it also leads to some cutesy (and a bit furry) musical numbers which many anime fans might enjoy. Sadly, the anime was not as well received as it should have been, bowing down to some of its season’s heavyweights, like Ore Monogatari!!, My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU. TOO, Food Wars: Shokugeki no Soma, Is it Wrong to Pick-up Girls in a Dungeon?, Nisekoi:, Fate/ Stay Night, The Heroic Legend of Arslan, and Sound! Euphonium, just to name a few.
If you are a fan of series like K-On!, or even bishounen anime like UtaPri, this one is for you.
Special Mention: Punch Line
Sure, the anime may often leave you wondering what is going on, but stick to it until the end and you will find yourself enjoying all the twists and turns of this hilarious and often-unpredictable veritable fantasy kitchen sink of an anime.
Actually, I am (Jitsu Wa, Watashi Wa)
Summer has featured some heavyweights like Shimoneta, Prison School, Overlord, Charlotte, GATE, God Eater, Monster Musume, Working!!!, Himouto! Umaru-chan, and To Love-Ru Darkness 2nd, with the season so packed that many might have missed this particular little gem called “Actually, I am”.
A romantic comedy involving a normal boy who is too honest with his feelings, a wacky vampire girl, a seriously small alien, a sultry werewolf version of Ranma 1/2’s titular character, a demonic principal, and a few nosy friends, who can be described as absolute trolls. The anime is quite frustrating on the romantic scale, but that just helps build up to how it is all going to play out.
However, its strongest suit is definitely on the comedy portion, offering a lot of gags and excellent chemistry between the characters.
Special Mention: Classroom Crisis
The anime actually starts up quite slowly, and then slowly starts to build into a fast-paced thriller, full of intrigue, corporate betrayals, and rocket ships.
Anti-Magic Academy 35th Test Platoon (Taimadou Gakuen 35 Shiken Shoutai)
Let’s all be honest here and say that this season has all been about one particularly bald and overpowered anime.
But here, we are not talking about this season’s most talked-about anime, we are talking about the most underrated, and for this season, we feel that Anti-Magic Academy 35th Test Platoon is severely underrated. Not only because it is in the very same season as that-bald-you-know-what, but it’s also set in a season with other fantasy-related harem anime, like Rokudai Kishi no Cavalry and The Asterisk War.
What sets “35” apart is the fact that it showed better animation quality, and has characters that more people can relate to. Its storyline has kept many at the edge of their seats, and actually has its fans debate on “who is the best girl?”
Special Mention: Kagewani
This creepy little anime short is a must-watch for horror anime fans, who most certainly love their creature features. This anime is a bit short, but it’s packed with some great horror sequences which can send you some chills. A bit of a caution though, as it is not for the faint-hearted.