Anime Power Rankings: Color is in the Eye of the Beholder (Winter Week 8)

Art is a matter of perspective. Dialogue, gestures, and cause-and-effect are often filled with subtle double meanings and are up to interpretation. As the recent dress debate has shown, even fairly “objective” topics such as coloring can be fraught with heated controversy. So art criticism is a hard thing and individual perspectives can wildly differ, which is always an important point to remember as we head into the 8th week of Anime Power Rankings in the year of 2015.

Rank Title Episode #1 Votes % of Ballots Change
1 Shirobako 20 18 64.7% 0
2 Death Parade 8 5 52.9% 0
3 Maria the Virgin Witch 7 7 33.3% up+6
4 Yurikuma Arashi 8 3 35.3% up+1
5 Garo 20 2 31.4% up-2

On the cusp: Rolling Girls (2/27.5%), Parasyte –the maxim- (0/23.5%), Durarara!!x2 (2/21.6%), Your Lie in April (1/19.6%)

Number of voters: 51

Number of full ballots (ranked 5): 41

Last time on APR

About the Anime Power Rankings

In a format that magnifies the strengths and weaknesses of every weekly installment of nearly every animated TV show Japan produces, Shirobako is singularly remarkable in being consistently insightful on many anime production issues every week while also maintaining a strong sense of plot and character progression that prevents it from becoming stale. Death Parade starts a two-parter with a deadly game of air hockey. I don’t think it was the most outstanding episode in the series, but I and other viewers have come to expect the second shoe to drop soon.

Like several APR party crasher before it, Maria the Virgin Witch takes its turn in the top 5 after hanging out in the periphery weeks before. This unique combination of light sex comedy with heavier themes about medieval attitudes about life, war, and religion have meshed better than anyone could have hoped. APR regulars Yurikuma Arashi and Garo round out this week’s top 5.

Comments from Team #WhiteandGold:

Maria has been a slow burn, but having started the manga I realize how different the adaptation is, and how such good decisions were made in adaptating it.

ABCBTom ( Hungry Bug Diner )

Tough second place decision between Maria and Rolling Girls this week. Maria kicked off a lot of what it had been building thematically and it’s going to be fascinating to see where it runs with it; Rolling Girls on the other hand is still a huge amount of fun if a little… by the numbers.

John Noel ( chaostangent )

Important stuff has started to happen in Maria the Virgin Witch. The battle that happened provided some shocking moments with actual consequences, I’m really looking forward to the rest of the show now!

Reevothemusefan ( Reevothemusefan )

Did George R.R. Martin write the latest episode of Maria the Virgin Witch? Limbs, dismemberment, and people acting out their darkest desires, people being forced against the walls and unleashing their petty natures. Where’s Decim and the other arbiters from Death Parade when you need them?

Guy ( Geekorner-Geekulture )

Maria the Virgin Witch might be my new standard for fantasy anime.

Eric McLeod ( Rose’s Turn )

“Fantasy” is a pretty broad umbrella term in fiction, and my new anime Fantasy standard is last year’s Bahamut. But I definitely respect that Maria is set on doing its own thing and following through on some tricky topics.

Gundam Build Fighters Try makes the top of my list today for straight-up robot battle porn. The show is wrapping up by returning to the heart of what makes the Gundam franchise great.

Lauren Orsini ( Otaku Journalist )

What say Team #BlueandBlack?

Shirobako went above and beyond with Madoka calling Hiraoka’s cynical ass out and verbally steamrolling him for all the complications he’s injected by being terrible at his job. Weeks of frustration towards this jaded imbecile were released during this one scene.

Usny ( Desu ex Machina )

For the longest time I couldn’t really follow what was happening on The Rolling Girls, but as we’ve progressed, I’ve come to terms that this is an amazingly pretty road-trip anime with adorable girls and entertaining fights. Some things still don’t make any sense, but it all happens so fast you can forgive it.

Lily ( Altair & Vega )

This week’s installment of moegirls, bikes, and music brought with it powerful, powerful reminiscences of AKB0048. It was chaotic, more than a little overblown, pretty silly when you stop to think about it and I’ll be damned if it didn’t all work for me in a way no episode of this show has worked for me yet.

iblessall ( Mage in a Barrel )

Death Parade was so predictable this week. The second the imouto showed up, I knew someone was going to rape her. And you get a fridge! And you get a fridge!

A Day Without Me ( GAR GAR Stegosaurus )

I almost never give up on a 24 episode show after I’ve already watched 20 episodes, but what was left of my patience for Parasyte completely evaporated after this week’s episode of plodding pacing, embarrassingly obvious platitudes, and the world’s dumbest SWAT team. The show started off incredibly strong, but the show’s long and obvious decline in its second half has become too much to excuse.

Adam Wednesdays ( Home Theater of Cruelty )

Who knew the flying dog would be the best parasyte design in the whole show?

If there was a show that was just the next episode previews for Koufuku Graffiti I would watch that and then rank it number two in my rankings each week.

Kelloggs ( Pedantic Perspective )

Maria Enters the Fray!

Maria Enters the Fray! (click)

Edwina’s cat from “Maria the Virgin Witch,” the squirrel from “Akatsuki no Yona,” Honorable Oda from “Yatterman Night,” and Iggy from “JoJo” are currently in a four-way tie for best animal this season. Truly, we are living in a golden age of furry mascot characters.

Dustin ( Bakacast )

Hold on to that thought!

See you next chart time!

4 Responses to “Anime Power Rankings: Color is in the Eye of the Beholder (Winter Week 8)”

  1. I’ll hold Garo as my own fantasy anime standard personally. Maria may joke about sex, but Garo actually “has” sex.

    On another note, Rolling Girls guys? Really?

  2. A shounen anime show should fill up 26 minutes with enough action to keep us interested and end on a cliffhanger that leaves us looking forward to next week. That’s the format, yet whenever anyone does it well, smart asses hit their keyboards and slam it for bad “pacing”. You’re not watching a Hollywood movie, get over it.

  3. Wouldn’t it be nice to work in a company that allows people to walk out in the middle of a project, consistently miss deadlines with catastrophic results, trash talk other employees and start battles with office stationery? Maybe Shirobako is telling us something about why Japans companies are falling behind.

  4. Valve entertainment is one such company, excluding the trash talk and office stationery battles.

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