Top Anime

Spring 2024 Impressions: Jellyfish Can’t Swim in the Night, Hibike! Euphonium 3, Girls Band Cry

Jellyfish Can’t Swim in the Night

Short Synopsis: A young woman has her passion for art reignited when she meets a former idol trying to restart her career.

Lenlo: Aside from 2 or 3 really suspicious shots of a teenager’s cleavage/ass/bathtub, Jellyfish was actually pretty good. We get a lot of these kinds of “I’m going to join a band in highschool to make friends/discover a new passion”, feels like there’s at least one every season. But this is one of the few to be less about music specifically and more about passions in general, which I appreciate. Watching the lead, Yoru, slowly grow to dislike drawing because of the reactions and attitudes of those around her, how they took it for granted and unknowingly belittled her art, felt… Real. Like something people go through every day. Yeah it was heighted and exaggerated by virtue of being in an anime, but the core dissatisfaction, that feeling of not being good enough and giving up on a passion, clicked with me. Same with Kano striking out and retaking her music, both from her old idol career and those who ruined it for her. It also helps that Jellyfish looked rather pretty, the night is just dark enough to make the neon-lit streets and bright colors pop, but is still illuminated enough that I don’t have to squint to make out what’s on screen. I’m not sure where Jellyfish will end up going since we have 2 more cast members to introduce, but for now I’m invested.
Potential: 75%

Hibike! Euphonium 3

Short Synopsis: Kumiko assumes the role of concert band president and oversees the club’s recruitment process as her final year of high school begins.

Wooper: Last year saw the release of “Ensemble Contest Arc,” an hour-long special meant to bridge the gap between the “Chikai no Finale” movie and this third season of Hibike Euphonium. I thoroughly enjoyed the special, which saw Kumiko step into her new role as president toward the end of her second year at Kitauji High. From what I understand, this early transition of power is common in Japan’s extracurricular clubs, since third year students prematurely tender their resignations to begin studying for their entrance exams. Of course, the opening minute of this premiere places the same expectation on Kumiko, with her father wondering aloud when she’ll finally quit her club – and her third year has only just begun! This scene clearly foreshadows the pressure she’ll face as both an impending high school graduate and the leader of a very green concert band, with new applicants flooding the screen all across this episode. Unless you’re an existing superfan, you’ll have to resign yourself to that flood to enjoy the series’ comeback, but it is indeed enjoyable, with the determination of even the most inexperienced members to win gold at Nationals serving as a rousing conclusion. The new girls in the bass section seem like fun, too, and the last-second rooftop appearance of a prodigious euphonium player may complicate the equation for Kumiko in the episodes to come. The series still has no idea how to handle romance (Reina’s impossible crush on their conductor is a non-starter), but if this new season can dodge that issue, it should be an enjoyable revival.
Potential: 50%

Lenlo: And so returns Hibike Euphonium. If I’m being honest, I’ve forgotten a lot of the series prior to this. I didn’t even remember that Kumiko was club president now, that’s how far gone I was. Still… It was nice, seeing most of this cast again. Personally most of my favorites were the upperclassmen, so a season without them is going to be hard. I’m also not sure if I’ll enjoy all of these new cast members coming in to fill their spots. That aside though? I think Hibike is back in pretty strong form. Show still looks great, well shot/lit/animated, the music is still nice, I like the focus on winning Nationals. I think that if you like Hibike enough to get through 2 seasons and like 3 movies, you’ll like season 3 as well. And if you never got into the series when it first aired? This probably won’t change anything for you.
Potential: 50%

Girls Band Cry

Short Synopsis: Small town girl moves to Tokyo. Overwhelmed, she runs into a guitar player on the verge of quitting. Together they form a band, seeking a place they belong!

Lenlo: You know how I mentioned the “Seasonal Cute Girls Doing Cute Things Band show” up in Jellyfish? Well that’s what this is. Girls Band Cry is our obligatory seasonal CGDCT band show. And while it’s not terrible, it’s nowhere near as good as Jellyfish. This is mostly due to the fact that it’s kind of just… there? We’ve seen this multiple times now, across multiple different shows. About the only thing I liked about it, that stood out to me, were the visuals. Reminiscent of D4DJ, GBC (#Letters) is doing the 2.5D thing where the models and environment are all 3D but the faces and emotions are 2D, animated on. And it works pretty well, GBC looks solid. It isn’t the most high fidelity show, sure, but it moves a lot and is rather expressive. That’s better than most seasonals! In fact it’s almost enough to make me want to watch it. Almost being the key word there, as it loses out to Jellyfish for me in almost every way.
Potential: 35%

The post Spring 2024 Impressions: Jellyfish Can’t Swim in the Night, Hibike! Euphonium 3, Girls Band Cry appeared first on Star Crossed Anime.

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.