This has been the first year (since 2012, and, boy, does that feel like an age ago now) that I’ve made a conscious effort to watch a good percentage of seasonal anime. I do feel that, as an aniblogger, it’s important to keep my finger on the pulse of what’s going on in the anime world and that keeping up with seasonal shows is a good way to do that. But, blogging aside, it’s also so much fun to be part of the conversation and to share memes, news, and theories with other anime fans. That’s difficult to do if you’re only watching the most ancient and/or obscure shows out there!
Anyway… I managed to watch 30 of this year’s anime. I know that that’s a pretty paltry figure to some, but I’m not in the habit of dropping shows, so I prefer to only pick a handful per season that I know beforehand that I’m likely to enjoy. In the following post I attempt to collate what I loved (or loathed) about the 30 shows that I watched this year.
Author’s note: if you feel that an anime has been unduly underrepresented, chances are, I didn’t see it. See the bottom of this post for a list of the shows that I did see this year. If you’re looking for something a bit more comprehensive, check out The First Ever WordPress Anime Awards. This features an impressive collection of categories and nominations put together by a team of brilliant bloggers (including yours truly)!
This year, more so than any other year since I began watching anime, the scheduling gods have been benevolent towards me. I’ve received a bounty of sequels to some of my all-time favourite shows and a wealth of amazing anime greenlit for next year.
Generally speaking, Summer ’18 has been a fairly good season of anime, so far. We’ve had several highly anticipated sequels that have, in my opinion, proven themselves to be worth the wait as well as several enjoyable standalone shows, such as Banana Fish, Hanebado!, and Cells at Work. But, more than being both solid and entertaining, Summer ’18 has been a cracking season in terms of its portrayal of women…
The issue of mental health is one that’s near and dear to my heart. I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression ever since I was 11 and have recently been diagnosed with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). I studied psychology for four years at university and, upon graduating, started work as a recovery worker for a mental health charity. So, with anime also being near and dear to my heart, I’m very interested in its portrayal of mental illness. Over the past few years I’ve noticed anime’s depiction of mental illness improve somewhat. A Silent Voice and Orange both depicted depression and suicidality in a sensitive way and it’s interesting to watch Okabe tackle what appears to be post traumatic stress disorder in this season’s Steins;Gate 0. However, to date anime’s depiction of mental illness has been largely insensitive or inaccurate.