Jack Scheibelein

Welcome back tourists,

Well, we’re here I guess. I don’t think most people expected the world to get much better much like with Cinderella’s crystal ball dropping when the clock struck midnight, but there is always that tiny feeling of hope. Anyway, back to anime.

With every change in the trees comes a change in TV and man did the Winter 2021 seasondeliver in spades. The combination of a bunch of setbacks and delays for certain series culminated in one of the most exciting seasons of the last few years. There are lots of important sequels and some impressive newcomers to the scene, so let’s talk about it. 

When I say this season is stacked, I really mean it. Just of the most popular series, “Attack on Titan” is back for its fourth and final season, reaching the climax of its most recent arc. “The Promised Neverland” has returned for its second season, as the kids of a strange orphanage continue their dangerous journey.

On top of that, there are sequels for a few popular isekai shows, including “Reincarnated as a Slime,” “Re:Zero,” and one of my personal favorites “Log Horizon.” Some fairly popular slice-of-life shows also got new seasons as well, including “Yuru Camp” and “Non-Non Biyori” getting their second and third seasons, respectively. 

On top of the high number of anticipated sequels, the Winter 2021 slate also brought with it some great new series. The first worth talking about is one that many have been anticipating since its announcement late last year. “Horimiya”is a romance show that focuses on two unlikely friends who quickly develop feelings for each other they are both too scared to admit.

The series centers on the idea that people usually have different personalities in different social situations. So far, at least, the show has not done a whole lot beyond that, but its pacing and the depth of its characters implies a much better story to come. 

Whereas many people were excited for “Horimiya’s” adaptation, pretty much no one saw “Wonder Egg Priority”coming. This makes a bit of sense, though, as the original creator and scriptwriter, Saki Takahashi, has no other credited anime productions under his belt and has only worked on a handful of relatively short manga before this. 

It may have come out of nowhere, but “Wonder Egg Priority” likely will not leave anyone’s memory for quite a while. It focuses on young girls who have gained the ability to enter a dream-like world where the task is to “break open eggs” and save the girls that come out of them from their trauma and abusers.

The subject matter by its self would make the show memorable, as it touches on everything from bullying, suicide and sexual assault. However, it is that combined with its colorful presentation, intricate and yet somehow earworm-y soundtrack and nuanced characters that makes it so amazing. Not to mention the series is not even halfway done and already appears to be an easy contender for anime of the year. 

One other show worth a brief mention is “EX-ARM,”a sci-fi series about a young high school student who hates machines, but who seemingly finds himself in the middle of robotic warfare. The newest Crunchyroll original, if the internet is to be believed, is one of if not the worst anime ever made. For people who find themselves fans of hate-watching, this might just be a good watch, though I cannot formally confirm or deny that. 

This definitely feels like one of the better seasons to come out in a while. Sequels, exciting originals and garbage for people who enjoy garbage, I guess? This season seems like it has something for everyone. 

Jack Scheibelein is a Junior majoring in English. He can be reached atsgx199@vols.utk.edu.

Columns and letters of The Daily Beacon are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Beacon or the Beacon's editorial staff.

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