The Josei’s Top 10 Anime of 2016: Part 2 (#1-5)

This year’s Top Five is so strong, it’s actually a Top Six.

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Did you miss out on Part 1? Fear not! You can click here for the year in review and the bottom half of the Top 10, including honorable mentions. Or, if you’re ready to check out the cream of the crop, you can hit the jump and read on for more.

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Glancing Upstream: Fall 2016 Retrospective and Review

It’s the most overworked time of the year~

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In the next couple weeks I’ll be hitting you with final Flip Flappers commentary, my Top 10 Anime of 2016, maybe a short essay or two, and then we turn around and start all over again with the winter premieres, including the much-anticipated return of Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju (and my lengthy commentary about it)! A blogger’s work is never done.

So you’d think that would mean I’d have kept my Fall retrospective thoughts short and sweet, right? Wrong! This season was a cornucopia of strong comedy, positive queer representation, diverse female leads, and geeky premises. And you know I can’t shut up about stuff like that. Hit the jump for too many words about too many shows.

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Panning the Stream: Fall 2016 Midseason Review

Peeking in on the autumn lineup.

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I’m writing this from a hotel room in New York, which both explains why it’s a bit late (some of these shows have already moved past their halfway point) and why this introduction is going to be brief. My Fall anime bloc continues to either hold steady or improve each week, depending on the show, which is always a promising sign at the halfway mark. There’s good variety too, so whether you’re looking for something to soothe or something to pump you up, you should be able to find a much-needed break from reality below.

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So That I Could Be Myself: Gender Performance in Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju & Yuri on Ice

Finding a place for yourself, on stage and on ice.

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“It’s not a kind of rakugo I can do. The more I hear, the more uncomfortable I get… Never mind it. I have my own rakugo.”

“Trying to be the playboy isn’t me. I want to be the most beautiful woman in town, who seduces the playboy!”

This year we’ve had the pleasure of seeing a pair of top-notch anime, Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju and Yuri!!! on Ice, deal with gendered expectations in two very different spheres: 1940s Japanese rakugo and modern-day world figure skating. Along the way, both series have challenged cultural expectations about how men should or shouldn’t act, and shown why it’s important to cast aside restrictive gender roles and play to our own strengths.

Click here to read the full article on Anime Feminist!

Rule of Three Review: Fall 2016 Anime Digest

I thought spring was the rainy season, so why am I drowning in shows in October?

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There are far too many shows on this list, but I can’t bear to cut any others at this point. It’s too early to say this is the strongest season of the year, but it sure is looking promising. Some are artistic marvels, some compelling character studies, some soothing balls of cuteness, some just plain fun, and some are…er, Keijo (look, I don’t feel great admitting that either, okay?). Hit the jump for both my pride and my shame.

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Panning the Stream: Fall 2016 Premieres, Round 1

Hey ho and away we go!

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We’re roughly halfway through the Fall premieres, so now’s as good a time as any to compile a shortlist and talk about ’em. As usual, I’m watching all licensed new shows and any relevant sequels and giving you at least a few thoughts on each of them. The Josei Next Door: Sitting through everything, so you don’t have to!

I’ve divided them into three categories: “Guaranteed Three Episodes,” “On the Fence,” and “Slush Pile.” Actually, make that four categories–I’m rolling some sequels/spin-offs into this one, too. There’s a fair amount in that fence-sitting group because, while there haven’t been a ton of out-and-out awful shows, outside of Yuri on Ice there wasn’t anything that really “wowed” me, either. Some solid foundations and a fair amount of variety, though, so hopefully it’ll build well on itself, and you’ll all be able to find something that catches your eye, too.

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