The Three-Episode Rule
This rule exists somewhere in the Big Book of Anime Laws (probably under “T” – I suspect we’re smart enough to alphabetize this thing), and it’s exactly what it sounds like.
Now I’ve seen some people argue that you should do this for every show, but I wouldn’t go quite that far. I think the “Was the premiere so bad it made you want to punch a baby?“ Rule takes precedence. Still, the general agreement among the anime community is that, if the premiere caught your interest even a little bit, then you should stick around for at least two more episodes before you decide to drop the series.
It’s a good rule for most TV, really (anime or otherwise), and one I like to follow as well. Usually by Episode Three you have a pretty good idea of a show’s trends – its strengths, its weaknesses, and where it tends to land on the spectrum between the two. Granted, there’s always the chance the show could pull a Samurai Flamenco and force you to abandon ship (I’ll always love you, Episodes 1-6.75!), but percentage-wise this happens fairly infrequently. Plus three episodes gives you time to get invested in the characters, pulled into the story, and really just to see where the whole mad adventure is going.
I’m explaining all this now because later today I’ll be launching into my “Rule of Three Reviews” (yay new segments!) for all the summer shows that made it out of Premiere Week. I’ll blog shows either individually or in groups of two, let you know how they progressed and where they stand, and how I’ll be blogging them (or not) from here on out.
Oh – and I’ll be pushing the really good ones at you like an Adderall dealer during finals week. Here’s hoping we can find you a new favorite this summer season!