Anime Winter Season 2020: Final Thoughts

2020 winter anime season

It’s that time of the year again, so enjoy our Final Thoughts of the 2020 winter anime season that just came to an end~


22/7
Length: 12 Episodes • Genre: Music

22/7 anime nanobun no nijyuuni
Last year, I watched a Korean horror movie titled White: Melody of Death. It wasn’t great, but I liked how it was different than what you’d normally expect from something featuring idols/pop stars. I mention this because, at this rate, I’m kind of over idol anime. Almost all of them seem really similar, and the whole process feels like it’s just about selling some real-life CDs and merch (who still even uses CDs?!). Anyway, early on in 22/7, “The Wall” was pretty intriguing, and this show seemed different enough to make me hopeful that this wouldn’t be just another idol anime, but while it wasn’t as unique as an idol horror movie, 22/7 still wasn’t your typical idol anime.

The focus here isn’t so much on the music as much as it is on the individual girls themselves. Most of the girls had their own episode (there were eight girls in the group), so we get to see their backstory, learn their motivations, and get to know them much better. It’s a far more effective approach than what you typically see in other idol anime, so I was a lot more emotionally invested in these girls than those of other similar shows. Some of the episodes were better than others, and while some of the drama was kinda predictable, I still enjoyed it more than your typical song and dance. This anime was recommended in the comments, so I was hopeful it would have some yuri, and early on, things were looking promising. Miu and Sakura seemed to have a really close relationship (Miu x Nicole as well), but the show gets away from that, so yuri wasn’t as big as a factor as I was hoping for. Still, I found this a little more enjoyable than something like Love Live!, although I’m not sure that fans of that series or “traditional” idol anime would like this as much as I did.

7/10


Heya Camp△
Length: 12 Episodes • Genre: Comedy, Slice of Life

heya camp
Over the past few years, you’d be hard-pressed to find an anime that’s more easygoing and watchable than Yuru Camp△, and if this past season is anything to go by, you can add Heya Camp△ into the conversation. Even though it was almost entirely lacking the actual camping aspect of its parent story, it didn’t even matter. All of the girls were back, and they were as charming as ever. I probably would have liked it more had Rin been with the others on all of their stops on the Stamp Rally, but just Nadeshiko, Aoi, and Chiaki was enough. These were super short episodes, but I think they were still long enough to allow people to get their cute girls doing cute things fix.

The first season didn’t have any yuri, and this spin-off is no different, but that didn’t really change how much I enjoyed it. Season two of Yuru Camp△ won’t debut until 2021, so this might be the last we’ll see of these girls for a while, but whether the episodes were short or normal length, this series has always produced some of the most pleasant and calming anime out there. Some people may think of an anime like this as uneventful or even boring, but not me, and I’m looking forward to seeing more cute and cozy camping scenes next year~

6.5/10


BOFURI: I Don’t Want to Get Hurt, so I’ll Max Out My Defense.
Length: 12 Episodes • Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, Sci-Fi

bofuri anime
I didn’t initially pick this one up, but someone in the comments mentioned that it gave off some yuri vibes, so I gave it a go. If I knew then what I know now, I wouldn’t have done that, because it has practically no yuri vibes at all. As this is another one of those anime that takes place in an MMORPG, the usual assortment of quests, monsters, and leveling up is all there, so as someone who enjoys games, I liked these aspects.

But a big problem I had with this anime is that Maple is just way too OP. In the beginning, it was pretty amusing to see her accidentally kill monsters, but after a while, it became repetitive to me. This might’ve been less of a problem if the other characters were interesting enough on their own, but I just didn’t really care about any of them. BOFURI was all about Maple, and while she was cute and enjoyable, this ultimately just felt like a generic anime with a fun little twist. For whatever reason, this type of anime seems to do pretty well, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see this eventually get another season, but even if it does, I think I’ll just give it a pass.

5.5/10


Koisuru Asteroid
Length: 12 Episodes • Genre: Comedy, School, Slice of Life

koisuru asteroid asteroid in love
Asteroid in Love. Judging by the English translation of the title and the fact that the two main characters are girls, you’d expect Koisuru Asteroid to be a yuri anime, or at least be a strong yuri-ish anime, right? Well, it doesn’t live up to the yuri potential of that title, and overall, I’m disappointed that this wasn’t as subtext-heavy as I was hoping for, even when Mira and Ao started living together. That living arrangement as well as their childhood promise to each other to discover an asteroid together, had me thinking Koisuru Asteroid would be as subtext-heavy as Amanchu! or Slow Start, yet it just didn’t seem to want to go in that direction.

Instead, there was a whole lot of science to nerd over. I liked that this anime was actually pretty informative, and as someone who briefly used to collect rocks as a kid, I found the subject matter interesting nevertheless. That said, I think this anime might’ve been a little too educational for my liking. And I had some mixed feelings about the characters. Mira and Ao were entertaining enough, I felt, but Morino and Mikage didn’t do much for me. I thought that Suzu was perhaps the most entertaining character in the entire show (thanks to her almost feeling like a yuri character), yet she wasn’t around for nearly the entire final quarter of the season. Inose was adorable, but I had no reason to care about Yuu or Chikage or those other girls introduced in the final episodes. The show definitely could’ve been a lot funnier, and despite the subject matter, this felt like just another CGDCT anime. If you’re into the sciences or CGDCT, you might enjoy it, however, those tuning in just for some yuri will be disappointed.

6/10


Magia Record: Mahou Shoujo Madoka☆Magica Gaiden
Length: 13 Episodes • Genre: Drama, Magic, Psychological, Thriller

magia record
Knowing nothing of the game, I’m still confused by all that happened in this first season of Magia Record. Yeah, a second season has already been announced, and it’s going to be needed, because by the end of the season, everything was so chaotic. We didn’t get any sort of resolution, and being a side story, this is not as similar to the main series that you might expect. For a major portion of the season, this is nowhere near as dark and grim by Madoka★Magica standards, and that was one of the many reasons I loved the main series so much.

Another reason was the characters, and I felt like the characters in Magia Record couldn’t really compete in this regard. I thought Iroha was a pretty bland main character, and I actually liked several of the supporting characters more than her. Compared to the main series, there are a lot more characters to get to know, but despite all the fresh faces, I was hoping to see the original cast, and I was happy we got to see at least some of them. Madoka was no slouch in the yuri department, yet there wasn’t much to get excited about here. Sure, you could ship Iroha x Yachiyo, Tsukuyo x Tsukasa, and Rena x Kaede, but would you want to? Personally, I don’t, but to each their own. 😛

It might sound like I didn’t like this at all, however, it was really entertaining at times! Sure, it was pretty different than the original, but I thought that the story was still interesting, and I was happy that the series hasn’t lost its sense of mystery and intrigue. There’s so much more that could be said about Magia Record, but I’ll just say that I think it was a solid new entry in the series. It looks, sounds, and (sometimes) feels like the Madoka★Magica we’re used to, yet it’s unique enough to stand on its own merits. It definitely can’t measure up to the lofty standards of its predecessor, and even though I’m sure not all Madoka fans will be thrilled with it, I’m excited to see where the story goes next season.

7.5/10


Oshi ga Budoukan Ittekuretara Shinu
Length: 12 Episodes • Genre: Comedy, Music

oshi budoukan ittekuretara shinu
If 22/7 is a different kind of idol anime, you have to say the same about this one as well. But instead of focusing on the idols, Oshi ga Budoukan Ittekuretara Shinu focuses even more on the fans, and not just any kind of fans, obsessive fans. This is a good thing, because I thought the idols and group in this show were pretty forgettable, and Eripiyo is the only reason why I started watching in the first place. She’s so ridiculously over-the-top in her love for Maina, and that’s pretty much the entire show, or at least that’s all I cared about. In real-life, it seems the relationship between idols and those types of fans isn’t exactly healthy for either side, yet I thought this was a decent and somewhat amusing diversion from typical idol anime.

Of course, Eripiyo x Maina is probably what yuri fans will be watching for, but it was so frustrating how they couldn’t just speak more than a couple of sentences to each other, and especially frustrating how Maina couldn’t just tell Eripiyo how she really felt. Of course, Maina’s feelings weren’t quite like Eripiyo’s, but if she had been more vocal, maybe they’d be more like Yumeri and Maki. Those two members of ChamJam had the sweetest relationship, so they were easily one of the highlights of the series and the closest thing to canon. A review for this should be coming pretty soon, so I’ll talk about it more then~

6.5/10


Dropped: Darwin’s Game, Id:Invaded, Toilet-bound Hanako-kun, Nekopara, Rikei ga Koi ni Ochita no de Shoumei shitemita.

18 thoughts on “Anime Winter Season 2020: Final Thoughts

  1. Yep it was frustrating how slowly they moved but most females are lesbians in the idols anime so i think is good , while im not a fan of the idols thematic it is watchable , except when the fat guy and motoi whatever appear
    About bofuri again in the manga she is silly op but makes sense , seems like the anime made her op for reasons , as i told you before about kumaku anime , the main character there only has “game” interface , all other people are “real” (i think this leaves my explanation more clear 😂)
    About Magia Record i can’t talk yet since ill probably watch it all this weekend
    Slow Start is in my watch list (saw like 3 eps liked it but didnt finish) , the manga is ongoing and appears as yuri haha

    Liked by 1 person

    • I liked the fat guy (Kumasa) more than most of the idols. Kinda sad. 😀

      I think I’m just not into that type of MMO anime. It’s almost like isekai, and I never really liked those shows either. Whenever I see a show like that on MAL, I just tend to ignore it.

      And I thought you’d be the first person to watch Magia Record. Or at least I thought you’d finish it before I would. 😛

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      • Hahaha , since i knew around what part of the game it was gonna end i wanted to wait to see the rest of the eps together and around a day i had a lot of free time (the game is eating my time too since events last very few days and have 3 trillion missions)
        I honestly dislike most isekai , never really caught my attention unless it is good (? , i checked some and most had potato stories

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  2. Magia Record left me a little unsettled about the anime, in some ways it was a bit of a mess. I mean I really enjoyed it, but after playing the game you can’t help but notice the differences in their stories. They both are pretty consistent with each other, varying only in some details especially towards the end. The game story does start out slow too, and really took off for me with the Sana and Memory Museum story arcs, but sadly that’s where the anime season ends. So, hopefully the second season will be much more engaging.
    So far I think I am liking the game story more, especially the Sana story arc, which I think had more punch, and linked Iroha and Sana much more firmly.

    Heya Camp was delightful as expected, but unfortunately much too short (and I agree, not enough Rin!).
    But what I hoped for as season 2 of Yuru Camp came as Asteroid. I mean the main characters were pretty much Rin and Nadeshiko! I swear Maki from LL was in there too. 😛
    So, I guess I disagree with you on this one, as I thought it was really well done. Yes, it is another CGDCT (all the shows of this type you could rightly say are formulaic), but I thought it did what it was trying to do really well, and pretty much nailed all the points that make up this genre. I felt the subtext was pretty good too, maybe not quite on the nose as we may have wanted, but Mira and Ao very quickly felt like a couple to me, if not an old married one at that. 😀 And yeah I cringed when they did the graduation early and pulled in new characters right away at the end (I was flashing back to Sakurasou, which destroyed the entire show with that one move imo), but they totally pulled it off I thought.

    PS
    I reached a personal milestone just recently:
    My Completed Anime tab on MAL now says I have crossed the 100 days mark! Been wondering for years if I would actually make it, so yay! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hehehe. For once, my obliviousness worked to my benefit, since I knew nothing of the game. 😀

      Early on, I was super hopeful about Mira x Ao, but after the first couple of episodes, you need those yuri glasses. For whatever reason, if someone were to miss/skip those episodes, they’re left with mostly just a typical female friends scenario—not that dissimilar from them and all the other girls—so I was just wanting more.

      And woar! That’s a lot! I haven’t used MAL in a while. I just had the sole goal of my list surpassing L’s, so once I accumulated more days than her, I didn’t want to use it anymore and got tired of fiddling with it, so I just quit. 😀

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  3. I don’t think its an exaggeration to say that Bofuri was near top anime of winter 2020 haha its already got a second season coming. I enjoyed it but I will admit that besides Maples abilities everything else was bland (mostly other attack moves from characters, had no oomph). Lotta doujins/art for Maple X Sally though, those two sure are cute together, especially that candle lit dinner date they had underneath the stars.

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    • For whatever reason, people seem to like shows like that. I don’t get it… 😀

      I don’t think it was that bad, but it just seemed kind of generic to me. At least that dinner date was nice. That got me thinking that we were in store for a lot more subtext, yet it never really happened…

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  4. HOLY FUUUCKKK THE LAST EPISODE , IT WAS BETTER THAN THE GAME , MAMI KICKED THE ASS OF EVERYONE EASILY HAHAHAHA (as it should be)
    Ill write a review soon
    I HAVE A NEW SONG FINALLY ALSO
    okay time for Homura and her Wife to appear and save everyone

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    • Magia Record review (kinda)
      Well , both the game story and anime have amazing stories , both have their ups and downs , i could list all the differences of the anime and game but that would turn this post into a book haha , ill list these only , in the game the Yachiyo-Iroha relationship is developed a lot more different , but it seems in the anime they are developing it a lot slower (game has yuri-ish moments a lot earlier), now FELICIA anime version is A LOT better than game version , and i already knew about AI-chan , wich made me very sad ingame , the anime was very sad too , very well done that part , i hope Sana and Ai meet again.
      Negative kinda , Yachiyo relationship with all other characters of the house are developed a lot and makes sense in the game , anime feels cut in that regard sadly , they better make ovas that fit mid episodes , kinda like 2.5 etc (the anime is still good there but it is a lot more dramatic in the game)(Also makes more dramatic when others join Wings of Magius) Alina Gray is supossed to speak several languages , seems? like they killed that for reasons , i like the game version a lot more , not to mention the Alina anime fight was honestly border bad in comparision to what it could have been.
      Now this gives a billion points more and of course the anime introduces the Madoka Magica characters A LOT BETTER , for example in the game Kyouko was nerfed A LOT , now she was shown fighting not even sweating like it should be and even de-traumatizing Felicia wich was already better than game version
      Basically , both are AMAZING , i will support this as much as i can , and they are improving wich is always good
      PS: Sana adoptive family should be tortured to death. Kyouko should have appeared in the little flashback , i think i didn’t saw her
      Madoka Magica has several mangas it seems with side stories , some are mixed in the Magia Record game story.(Aand i hope in the anime too)

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      • I probably enjoyed that Mami vs. Yachiyo & Iroha fight more than any fight in the main series. I definitely didn’t think I’d be saying something like that. 😀

        So it seems that the anime and game each present certain things better than the other, but overall, which one do you think is better?

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        • Aaaaah i can’t decide honestly , i enjoyed both a lot (and both have their tiny flaws)
          If i were talking about Iroha-Yachiyo yuri road id say the game
          , but there are more anime seasons of Magia Record to see , maybe there are surprises (seems like it) also the anime ends differently than the game (that chapter only)
          Just so you can imagine Felicia is so annoying for me in the game that i wanted her dead , she is legit immature af , but i liked a lot her anime version , also was more realistic kinda
          Bonus : When i was playing the game i said “well not many(close to none) die” then i reached the Ai-chan/Sana arc.It was sad.Very.

          When Sayaka appeared to fight Mami in the game she insta lost (and it was Sayaka grand entrance) hahahahaha

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          • Since Magia Record is not Iroha-Yachiyo only it makes ir even harder for me to decide because it has a loooot of good characters (of course i dislike some)

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          • I don’t mind the multiple comments, since the extra comments make the total number look a little better. 😀

            Felicia was one of my favorites. How can anyone resist a girl with a rocket hammer? Ai and Sana were also nice. Definitely more feels than any other point in the season.

            And I hated seeing Sayaka being able to stand up to Mami. I’ve always considered Mami to be a lot stronger, so I expected that version to be able to crush Sayaka easily. If I was in charge, Sayaka would’ve insta lost as well. 😀

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            • Haha okay then that is good that my comments are not annoying
              Well i kiiinda disliked it but i like to think Mami wasn’t even trying and Sayaka used 9000% of her power , she does end up not being able to heal , when the bullets started turning and searching targets i was OMFG!!!!! , also it seems that in a side manga there is a timeline were Mami ends up being the strongest magical girl , also another one were she trains Kyoko (i like Kyoko a lot too) aa and this part is referenced in the game
              I like Tsuruno a lot but in the anime she was kinda very on the side , she plays a very important role in the game
              Issue : idk why but more than 10 times it unfollows alone this site i have to constantly press follow

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        • The pacing of the game is perfect or close to it also , the anime rushed a lot of stuff that is why i was talking about ovas to fill the spaces , damn i wish i could edit my messages so i dont have to make new posts 😂

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  5. As I commented on the earlier winter 2020 post I pretty much adored Koisuru Asteroid. Sure, there wasn’t as much yuri as we all hoped, but it felt nice, and being a science-y nerd I squee’d at a lot of stuff (like their visit to the JAXA space center and to the radio telescope). Also, I am utterly convinced that one of the new first years, Nanami Yuu, is a nod/tribute to Bloom.

    Like

    • My disappointment with the yuri may have doomed this for me, so I can’t say I enjoyed it as much as you did. But I Iiked how the show never got away from its science roots.

      And I never even noticed that! If true, it’s a odd choice, given this show’s lack of yuri, but it could be a nice little easter egg~

      Like

      • Yeah, when I first her introduce herself as Nanami Yuu I double-taked and rewound ot make sure I heard it right O_O

        Like

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