I had like ten pages of discussion of the new season typed up, and then I accidentally closed my browser and somehow WordPress’s autosave didn’t manage to save any of the work I had spent hours on. So instead of a long effortpost, you get the executive summary of what’s hot in the new season and why. If it seems to you like I missed something, you can mention it in the comments. Here is a reference chart for the shows of the season, taken from moetron.
Shinryaku! Ika Musume 2 (Invade! Squid Girl 2): This is already airing, but I’m not going to watch it until at least I finish Hanasaku Iroha, which I was going to put off until I wrote a fall preview post, but then I accidentally erased the fall preview post. The squid girl is funny and cute and I wanted more of this show after last season and now there’s more of it! Hooray!
Fate/Zero: Based on a prequel novel for hit indie Japanese pornographic visual novel Fate/Stay Night. FSN the game was great, transcendently great, but the anime adaptation left a lot to be desired. This is by a different studio, though, and novels are easier to adapt than visual novels. Based on what I know from playing the game (spoiler warning for FSN!) this show seems like it’s going to have to be pretty relentlessly bleak, and I’m not sure I want that. But it’s related to Fate/Stay Night, the greatest literary work of our age; there’s no way I won’t at least give it a chance.
Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon (Horizon on the Borderline): I haven’t been watching enough action anime lately; Steins;Gate did not turn out as I hoped. (It turned out better than I hoped, but it was not an action show, which is the point.) I have kind of high standards in action anime, but Sunrise did Code Geass, so they are at least capable of making an action anime interesting.
Kimi to Boku (You and Me): Looks like a genderswapped version of the traditional four girl slice of life comedy. Hopefully it doesn’t end up full of yaoi themes like a genderswapped version of Yuru Yuri.
Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai (I Don’t Have Enough Friends): Looks like a funny comedy about unlovable people. Unlovable people are the funniest people, because they don’t have to worry that a particular joke they make will make people stop loving them.
Last Exile: Ginyoku no Pham (Last Exile: Silverwinged Pham): Last Exile had a cool setting, but muddled writing, a confusing plot, and mostly forgettable characters. This has the same setting, but with new writing, plot, and characters.
Mirai Nikki (Future Diary): I had a whole big rant about how the norms of courtesy that scanslation groups show each other makes all scanslations awful, but it’s lost like tears in the rain. Suffice it to say that I read the first couple volumes of the manga this was based on, and it seemed really cool, but the translation was so awful I could not stand it. If you are a good scanslation group, I am begging you! Please! Re-translate the stuff that is translated by bad groups. Who cares what they think?
Guilty Crown: I wouldn’t even be considering this if it weren’t a Noitamina show, but I’m in the market for an action show and I need a backup in case the Horizon show doesn’t pan out. It looks like the sort of thing I would hate, lots of Capitalized Nouns standing in place of actual interesting concepts, but Noitamina is supposed to be a higher class, more intellectual breed of anime, right? I’ll cross my fingers.
That’s eight shows, plus Mawaru Penguindrum carried over from summer. If half of them turn out good, that’ll be five shows, which is a reasonable number to follow.