(2023-05-23) Awesome Spring 2023 Anime I've Been Watching

Hey everyone! The list of anime I have on my site is going to reach 100 animes pretty soon! Most of the anime on this list are anime I just sat down and (usually) watched in one sitting without waiting for any new episodes to come out. Watching anime seasonally (i.e. picking up a series during its airing and waiting for new episodes weekly) is not something that I have done much. When I have watched anime seasonally I usually have not watched more than 2 per season, and never more than three. But for most seasons I've watched no anime weekly.

However, this spring 2023 anime season I have picked up a total of EIGHT anime, and it's been pretty fun so far. I actually had a total of 10 anime I was watching at one point, but I dropped two of those (more on them later). And funnily, the schedule for all these anime happens to be such that I'm watching an episode or two of a new anime every single day of the week. That's been pretty interesting.

Upon hearing about this, Seinaru Kokoro suggested to me that I write my thoughts on all these anime I've been watching, and that's what I am going to be doing in this blog post. I will also be giving preliminary ratings for all the fresh animus that aren't sequels or continuations of ongoing serieses. Since it's past the halfway point of this season, and the overall plots are in full motion right now, I think I can give a good overview of what's happening and if it may be worth your time to watch. Let's get into it.

Dr STONE: New World

This has been a pretty fun shonen series watch since the start. This third season continues the rebuilding of civilization from scratch with the power of science and technology, and things unexpectedly start to get serious. More serious than the tough problems of the previous seasons. Not sure if this is much of a spoiler, but in this season we get the first contact with what is probably the main villain of the series. Spooky stuff. A character that was introduced in an hour-long TV special after season 2, Ryuusui, is super cool. I never thought that a character who is driven by intense greed could be non-antagonistic, but Dr Stone somehow makes it work.

One complaint I have is that the sciencey fun of trying to build the fundamental building blocks of modern civilization using basically caveman tech that was present in the first season is gone now. The "struggle" and the detailed explanations about how everyday things we take for granted are made (and how they were invented) seems completely gone. It's just now "press X to make thing" like it's a video game now. Like, making asphalt roads which is kind of a big deal was just done in basically under a minute. I get that the overarching plot needs to move along and it would take forever to explain everything, but it would have been cool to have a third of an episode showing how you could make asphalt roads with what is basically proto/early Victorian technology.

I've actually been thinking of writing a blog post about Dr Stone sometime, but things have changed so much in the series I'm not sure if I can do that without finishing the series first.

Demon Slayer: Swordsmith Village

Season 3 of the show where demons get slayed. I love it when Tanjiro goes "it's slayin' time" and beheads Michael Jackson (hee hee). In all seriousness, this season kiiinnnd of sucks. I don't have the highest standards, but even I noticed that the pacing and planning of this season has been kind of lackluster compared to previous ones. Hopefully things get HYPE and we finally see some great action in the remaining episodes of this first cour of Demon Slayer season 3.

Oshi No Ko

This anime is about two people who were reborn as the children of a super famous idol, and basically is about surviving as a star in the brutal entertainment industry, while figuring out a mystery. Probably the most hyped series of this season (maybe this decade?), largely because it was written by the same author as Kaguya-sama, who basically got to write whatever he wanted after the huge success of Kaguya-sama. Personally, I was mildly unimpressed, even after the crazy movie-length first episode. I honestly didn't really get why people were extremely excited about Oshi no Ko, although there wasn't anything bad about it, everything was solid.

Granted, I did find out one huge spoiler before I watched (aagh, fuck the "Plot" section of the any Wikipedia page), which probably ruined my first impressions, but I had hoped that "pedigree" wasn't the only thing driving the hype and source material viewers who knew something I didn't were also contributors to the hype. Turns out, yeah, things got goood. There was an episode that had something happen based on an actual real life incident involving a Japanese idol. And that amazing episode blew away any misgivings I had prior. I kind of get the massive hype now. Definitely recommend checking out Oshi no Ko.

Preliminary rating: 9/10

Too Cute Crisis

Liza, an top alien scientist, visits Earth and plans to destroy it because she thinks humans are too primitive, but when Liza sees a cat for the first time, it's the cutest thing she's ever seen in the entire galaxy, and Liza changes her mind about destroying Earth. Liza then ends up adopting a cat and struggling to figure out how to deal with something that is too cute for her to handle. Rest of the series is basically random slice-of-life shenanigans involving Liza and her alien colleagues on a nearby spaceship seeing and interacting with Earth's "too cute" animals.

This anime feels super underrated. If you've ever owned a pet or want to later, this is definitely kawaii pet propaganda that you'll love. I also love how the outros are done. In every episode's outro, during the part where Liza is running after her cat (named Yozora), there are various photos of real pets shown on the screen. Really fun anime.

Preliminary rating: 8/10

Isekai One Turn Kill Neesan

An isekai anime about a boy named Asahi who gets in an accident and ends up in a fantasy world. Right away, the show is like "okay, whatever, you know what an isekai is, and so does the otaku game nerd Asahi", and just doesn't bother with any explanation and exposition, which I find very amusing. Asahi tries doing the normal isekai thing he knows he should do and tries to become a hero adventurer, thinking he would get some cheat powers because he's from another world. Unfortunately Asahi finds out that he's weak and starting from the bottom with zero powers. During his first mission he runs into a wyvern, and almost dies, but his older sister, Maya appears out of nowhere and saves him.

Maya ends up being the one with cheat powers and can basically destroy any enemy quickly. However, everyone thinks that Maya instantly destroying any baddies is always being done by Asahi. This creates a funny dynamic throughout the anime where Asahi is always trying to hide that he's weak and his Onee-san is doing all the work. And that's fine with Maya because Maya happens to be an over-the-top brocon who constantly hugs and gloms Asahi and wants Asahi to reciprocate her intense love. Yeah... so this anime is degenerate trash, but it's very entertaining degenerate trash. "Peak fiction" doesn't stand a chance.

Don't let the dumb story think that everything else is also bad with this anime, because there are zero cut corners with the animation and stuff. As far as I can tell, everything is competently animated, with no cheap 3DCG tricks. All the intense fight scenes are done really well. And also I love watching the intro and outro every episode. Seriously, the people making this show didn't have to go this hard. Why is a basically forgettable isekai series being done so well? (The answer seems to be that this is the first show this studio is making, and they want to do everything well so they can pick up "better" shows in the future.)

Preliminary rating: 8/10 Kilmaria/10

Insomniacs After School

An anime about a high school guy, Nakami Ganta, who has severe insomnia who cannot fall asleep at night and sleeps during the day at school. He tries to find a nice place to nap after school or during lunches and ends up in a mysterious unused observatory at his school. There he finds Magari Isaki, a classmate he doesn't interact with sleeping there. She tries to run away, but the door locks them both in. Later, they both secretly end up using this observatory to get some sleep during the day because of their shared insomnia problems.

This may sound kind of weird story, but man, this is a cozyy series. It's basically cozymaxxing. Watching Magari and Nakami be comfortable around each other and slowly fall in love is so sweet. There are many moments where you feel like the coziness may slip away and the things will turn for the worse, but then the anime is like "relax friend, everything will be daijoubu", and the coziness continues. There is some minor drama and "bad" characters, but these do not really detract from the show. Maybe a tiny bit of spice enhances the coziness I guess.

Preliminary rating: 8/10

Loving Yamada at Lv999

(This is the show in the header image of this blog post.)

A college student, Kinoshita Akane, gets dumped by her boyfriend. They both previously played an MMO together, and Akane decides to play the game again and runs into a noteworthy player in her guild, who is a skilled pro-gamer. This and that happens and Akane ends up running into that player, named Yamada Akito in real life at an in-person event for the MMO, and ropes him into a futile plan to make her ex jealous by making Yamada pretend he is her boyfriend. Then Akane ends up taking him out and ends up venting while drinking heavily and passes out. Akane then wakes up at Yamada's place.

That may have sounded weird, but watching this anime I think this is a very sweet shoujo romance, and it melts my icy heart watching Akane and Yamada vibe together and realize that they are in love as the series progresses. Of course there's a cute and cool supporting cast that helps things along. People compare Yamada Lv999 to Recovery of an MMO Junkie because both of these series have a component where part of the story happens in an MMO, but I think Yamada Lv999 is better than MMO Junkie (not that MMO Junkie is bad or anything). There are some episodes with bad vibes that made me think that this anime would be full of petty drama, but those have stopped and we're back to lovey-dovey stuff at this moment. Hopefully we see a very heartwarming conclusion at the end of this season.

Preliminary rating: 9/10

Skip to Loafer

This anime is so good and it's hard to explain without basically saying "just watch it, you'll love it!" It's about a girl from a countryside town called Iwakura Mitsumi who moves to Tokyo in hopes of developing an excellent career. Despite her confidence, everything goes wrong on the first day and she ends up needing to get help from a boy named Shima Sousuke to get to school on time after getting lost. And then school stuff and romance kind of happens. But this isn't some basic ass slice-of-life show. There's a huge cast of characters who all manage to demonstrate so much depth with so few actions and words. And many of these characters have some personal issues that they struggle with that Mitsumi helps them solve with her unique personality. The writing of this anime is so good I can't. Watch Skip to Loafer! NOW!

Preliminary rating: 10/10

Other Stuff

As I mentioned before, I dropped two shows this season. These are Yuri is my Job, which I dropped because it was a cringefest, and Mahou Shoujo Magical Destroyers, which I dropped because it got too weird. I might pick up Magical Destroyers again though. There are other cool animes airing this season that I might watch like Heavenly Delusion, and Hell's Paradise.

Seeing all these cool shows in a single season while they are airing makes me wonder what I may have been missing out on only occasionally watching anime seasonally. Or... is this a uniquely interesting anime season and other seasons won't be as good? Regardless, I'll definitely be watching more anime seasonally if I have the time, and I will likely be looking through all the seasons from 2010-ish-onward to see if there are some gems that I may have missed eventually. Though my to-watch anime list is quite long, and it'd be nice to get through that first.

Anyways, I hope that I got you interested in some of these animes, and you enjoy them if you watch them. If you're looking for some other recommendations I've made check out this post.

Thanks for reading. Are you watching any interesting anime recently?

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