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Anime Spotlight Spring 2012 - The List

by Bamboo Dong,

Featured Series (Click for more)

(Jump to additional shows)

Dusk maiden of Amnesia





Medaka Box


Queen's Blade Rebellion



Also Premiering

Title: Accel World
Starts:Saturday, April 7 at 12:30AM JST on Tokyo MX
Genre: Science fiction
Website: http://accel-world.net/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Original Creator: Reki Kawahara (Accel World, Sword Art Online)
  • Select Cast: Aki Toyosaki (K-ON's Yui Hirasawa, Un-Go's Inga) Yuuki Kaji (Kimi to Boku's Akira, Guilty Crown's Shu Ouma)
  • Ending Theme: →unfinished→ by KOTOKO (Please Teacher!, Hayate the Combat Butler)
Accel World is an adaptation of Reki Kawahara's science-fiction light novel series of the same name. Lowly middle school student Haruyuki's life changes when he's introduced to "Accel World," a virtual world where he can fight as a knight to defend a princess.
Title: Acchi Kocchi
Starts:Thursday, April 5 at 2:20AM JST on TBS
Genre: Comedy, Romance
Website: http://www.tbs.co.jp/anime/ackc/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Fumitoshi Oizaki (Astarotte's Toy, Romeo x Juliet)
  • Chief Animation Director: Hideki Furukawa (Astarotte's Toy, Persona 4: The Animation)
  • Character Design: Atsuko Watanabe (Cat God, Valkyria Chronicles)
This gag comedy follows the crazy antics of tsundere Tsumiki, surly, eyeglasses-wearing Io, and their classmates Hime, Mayoi, and Sakaki.
Title: AKB0048
Starts:Sunday, April 29 at 12:00AM JST on JP, KBS Kyoto
Genre: Music
Website: http://akb0048.jp/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Chief Director: Shoji Kawamori (Macross Plus, Outlaw Star)
  • Director: Yoshimasa Hiraike (Amagami SS, Wagnaria!!)
  • Cast: Akemi Kanda (Maho Sensei Negima's Asuna Kagurazaka, Maria Holic's Nanami Kiri) Ayako Kawasumi (Banner of the Stars' Lafiel, Fate/Zero's Saber)
Female idol group AKB48 comes to life in this television anime about several idol trainees who hope to one day become full AKB0048 members.
Title: Arashi no Yoru ni
Starts:Wednesday, April 4 at 12:00PM JST on TV Tokyo
Studio:Sparky Animation
Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Drama
Website: http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/anime/arashinoyoruni/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Tetsuro Amino (Macross 7, Shiki)
  • Cast: Hiroyuki Yoshino (Vandread's Hibiki Tokai, Sket Dance's Yusuke Fujisaki) Kouchi Yamadera (Cowboy Bebop's Spike Spiegel, Ghost in the Shell's Togusa)
  • Ending Theme: "Dear My Friend" by U-KISS
A goat and a wolf become friends after a stormy night, and learn to overcome differences and hardship.
Title: Beyblade Zero-G
Starts:Sunday, April 8 at 8:30AM JST on TV Tokyo
Studio:Synergy SP
Genre: Action, Adventure
Website: http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/anime/mf-beyblade-zero/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Kunihisa Sugishima (Beyblade: Metal Fusion, Yu-Gi-Oh 2000)
  • Music: Neil Parfitt (Bakugan Battle Brawlers)
  • Chief Writer: Katsumi Hasegawa (Cyberteam in Akihabara, Saber Marionette J)
Veteran Beyblade director Kunihisa Sugishima will be helming this seventh installment of the hit franchise.
Title: Cardfight!! Vanguard: Asia Circuit Hen
Starts:Sunday, April 8 at 10:00AM JST on TV Tokyo
Studio:TMS Entertainment
Genre: Action, Comedy
Website: http://cf-vanguard.com/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Original creator: Akira Ito (Yu-Gi-Oh! R)
  • Story Composition: Satoshi Nakamura (Duel Masters)
The second season of Cardfight!! Vanguard will follow Aichi, Kai, Misaki, Kamui, and Ren as they travel around Asia fighting different adversaries. The circuit will begin in Singapore.
Title: Fate/Zero part 2
Starts:Saturday, April 7 at 12:00AM JST on Tokyo MX
Genre: Action, Fantasy
Website: http://www.fate-zero.jp/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Returning Director: Ei Aoki (Ga-Rei: Zero, Girls Bravo)
  • Returning cast: Ayaoki Kawasumi as Saber, Akio Ohtsuka as Rider, Tomokazu Seki as Archer
  • Screenplay: Gen Urobuchi (Phantom ~ Requiem for the Phantom, Puella Magi Madoka Magica)
Following on the heels of the first season of Fate/Zero, which aired in Fall 2011, this season will continue the events of the Fourth Holy Grail War.
Title: Gakkatsu!
Starts:Tuesday, April 3 at 9:55PM JST on NHK
Genre: Comedy
Website: http://www9.nhk.or.jp/anime/gakkatsu/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director/Music: Rareko (Chi-Sui Maru)
  • Cast: Miyuki Kawasho (Fireball's Drossel von Flugel)
Touted as a "debate comedy," this series revolves around a junior high school class where students share their viewpoints on unique and bizarre topics.
Title: Ginga e Kickoff!!
Starts:Tuesday, April 3 at 9:30 JST on NHK-BS
Studio:TYO Animations
Genre: Sports
Website: http://www9.nhk.or.jp/anime/ginga/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Konosuke Uda (Galaxy Express 999: Eternal Fantasy)
  • Cast: Yu Kobayashi (Maho Sensei Negima's Setsuna Sakurazaki, Maria Holic's Mariya Shido) Houko Kuwashima (X's Satsuki Yatouji)
  • Character Design: Hajime Watanabe (School Rumble, Hime-chan's Ribbon)
A young soccer enthusiast's team is disbanded when it doesn't have enough players, but his dreams are rekindled when he meets a female professional soccer player, and recruits her help to bring his team back.
Title: Haiyore! Nyaruko-san
Starts:Tuesday, April 10 at 2:00AM JST on TV Tokyo
Genre: Comedy, Fantasy
Website: http://ga.sbcr.jp/bunko_blog/nyaruani/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Azuma Tani (Thermae Romae)
  • Cast: Eri Kitamura (Puella Magi Madoka Magica's Sayaka Miki, Queen's Blade's Alleyne) Kana Asumi (Shugo Chara!'s Ran, Amagami SS's Miya Tachibana)
  • Original Character Design: Koin (Kanokon, Nyarko-san: Another Crawling Chaos)
Mahiro Yasaka's life is changed one day when he's chased by aliens. Luckily, his life is saved by Nyaruko, a Cthulu deity of chaos who can take on the physical appearance of a silver-haired girl.
Title: Hiiro no Kakera
Starts:Sunday, April 1 at 10:00PM JST on Yomiouri
Studio:Studio DEEN
Genre: Romance, Fantasy
Website: http://www.hiironokakera.tv/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Bob Shirohata (Hetalia - Axis Powers, Gravitation)
  • Series Composition: Yoshiko Nakamura (Hakuoki, Junjo Romantica)
  • Character Design: Naoyuki Onda (Gantz, Ergo Proxy)
This television anime is based on the same-titled romance game, which centered around 17-year-old Tamaki Kasuga. After she moves into a mountain village with her grandmother, she's introduced to the five handsome Guardians of the Tamayohime.
Title: Jewelpet Kira☆Deko
Starts:Saturday, April 7 at 9:30AM JST on TV Tokyo
Studio:Studio Comet
Genre: Magical girl
Website: http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/anime/jp-kiradeco/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Makoto Moriwaki (Onegai My Melody, Oruchuban Ebichi)
  • Music: Cher Watanabe (Maken-Ki!, The Prince of Tennis II)
  • Series Composition: Kazuyuki Fudeyasu (Tantei Opera Milky Holmes, Ben-To)
The fourth Jewelpet series stars Ruby, a girl who loves decorating with rhinestones. One day, she learns about the legendary "mirror ball" deco and runs across the Kira Deco 5 team of heroes.
Title: Jormungand
Starts:Wednesday, April 11 at 12:30AM JST on Tokyo MX
Genre: Action
Website: http://www.jormungand.tv/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Series Composition: Yousuke Kuroda (Infinite Ryvius, S-CRY-ed)
  • Music: Taku Iwasaki (Black Butler, Rurouni Kenshin: Trust & Betrayal)
  • Director: Keitaro Motonaga (Katanagatari, School Days)
Jonah, a former child soldier with a tortured past, joins the mercenary unit of Koko Kematyar, a female arms dealer. Along with their other comrades, they venture through the seedy world of blackmarket arms dealing.
Title: Kimi to Boku. 2
Starts:Wednesday, April 2 at 1:30AM JST on TV Tokyo
Studio:J.C. Staff
Genre: Comedy, Slice of life
Website: http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/anime/kimiboku2/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Returning director: Mamoru Kanbe (Elfen Lied)
  • Returning cast: Kouki Uchiyama as Yuuta, Ryohei Kimura as Yuuki, Miyu Irino as Chizuru, Toshiyuki Toyonaga as Shun, Yuuki Ono as Kaname
  • Ending Theme: "Kimi to Boku no Banka" by Yu Sakai (Nodame Cantabile)
Continuing from the first season, which aired Fall 2011, this slice of life comedy follows the lives of five friends, four of whom have known each other since childhood.
Title: Koi-ken!
Starts:Thursday, March 1 at 3:00PM JST on mobile phones
Studio:Marvy Jack
Genre: Comedy, Romance
Website: http://koiken-anime.jp/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Kamisiro (Koiken ONA)
  • Scenario: Deko Akao (Arakawa under the Bridge)
  • Cast: Kikuko Inoue (Ah! My Goddess' Belldandy, Code Geass' Cecile Croomy) Haruka Tomatsu (Ano Natsu de Matteru's Ichika Takatsuki) Kaori Nazuka (.hack//SIGN's Subaru)
Based on a popular bishoujo mobile game by Vector, this anime adaptation will be available for streaming on smartphones. In the game, players interact with members of the Romance Research Club at a high school.
Title: Kuroko no Basuke
Starts:Sunday, April 7 @1:58AM on MBS
Studio:Production I.G
Genre: Sports
Website: http://www.kurobas.com/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Shunsuke Tada (The Prince of Tennis)
  • Series Composition: Noboru Takagi (Durarara!!, Baccano!)
  • Character Design: Yoko Kikuchi (Tsubasa Tokyo Revelations, Noir)
Taiga Kagami is a new student at Seirin High School, and when he joins the basketball team, he meets fellow player Tetsuya Kuroko, who happens to be the enigmatic sixth member of the legendary "Generation of Miracles" team. Their goal is to take their team to the inter-high school champsionship against Kuroko's former teammates.
Title: Lupin III ~Mine Fujiko to Iu Onna~
Starts:Wednesday, April 4 at 1:29AM JST on Nippon TV
Studio:TMS Entertainment
Genre: Comedy, Action
Website: http://fujiko.tv/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Sayo Yamamoto (Michiko to Hatchin)
  • Animation Director / Character Designer: Takeshi Koike (Redline)
  • Series Composition: Mari Okada (AnoHana)
Fujiko Mine stars in the first new television anime series in the Lupin III franchise in over 25 years. The series will follow Fujiko and her fellow Lupin III cast members in their younger days.
Title: Naruto SD: Rock Lee no Seishun Full-Power
Starts:Tuesday, April 3 at 6:00PM JST on TV Tokyo
Studio:Studio Pierrot
Genre: Comedy
Website: http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/anime/lee/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Masahiko Murata (Naruto Shippuden: The Lost Tower)
  • Returning cast: Yoichi Masukawa as Rock Lee, Kazuhiko Inoue as Kakashi Hatake, Chie Nakamura as Sakura Haruno, Junko Takeuchi as Naruto Uzumaki
  • Opening Theme: "Give Lee Give Lee Rock Lee" by ANIMETAL USA
A spin-off of the international mega-hit franchise, this new weekly series revolves around Rock Lee, and depicts all the characters in SD. This gag comedy is adapted from Kenji Taira's manga of the same name.
Title: Nazo no Kanojo X
Starts:Sunday, April 8 at 1:30AM JST on Tokyo MX
Studio:Hoods Entertainment
Genre: Comedy, Romance, Slice of life
Website: http://www.starchild.co.jp/special/nazokano_x/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Chief Animation Director: Shizue Kaneko (Doraemon: Shin Nobita no Uchu Kaitakushi)
  • Art Director: Shigemi Ikeda (Afro Samurai: Resurrection)
  • Character Design: Kenichi Konishi (Bokurano, Tokyo Godfathers)
When a strange transfer student shows up in Tsubaki's class, he doesn't expect to accidentally taste her drool and become hooked. As he spends more time with her, he learns that she has a penchant for carying scissors in her underpants, and making paper flowers.
Title: Ozuma
Starts:Friday, March 16 at 12:00AM JST on WOWOW
Genre: Science fiction, Drama
Website: http://ozuma.jp/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Original Creator: Leiji Matsumoto (Galaxy Express 999, Space Pirate Captain Harlock)
  • Chief Director: Ryousuke Takahashi (Armored Trooper Votoms)
  • Character Design: Nobuteru Yuki (Escaflowne, Record of Lodoss War)
Slated for six episodes, this science fiction series is the first major project from legendary manga creator Leiji Matsumoto in five years. The series takes place far in the future after catastrophic solar activity destroys Earth's atmosphere and blankets the planet in sand.
Title: Phi Brain: Kami no Puzzle 2nd season
Starts:Sunday, April 8 at 5:30PM JST on NHK-E
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy
Website: http://www.phibrain.net/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Returning Director: Junichi Sato (Pretear, Maple Town Stories)
  • Returning cast: Shintaro Asanuma as Kaito Daimon, Jun Fukuyama as Gammon Sakanoue, Kaori Shimizu as Nonoha Ito
  • Opening Theme: "Now or Never" by Nano
Puzzle genius Kaito is back in the second season of Phi Brain: Puzzle of God. Armed with the powerful Armlet of Orpheus, which allows him to unlock parts of his brain to grant him superior puzzle-solving abilities, he must continue his battle with the mysterious P.O.G. organization and solve their deadly puzzles.
Title: Pretty Rhythm Dear My Future
Starts:Saturday, April 7 at 10:00AM JST on TV Tokyo
Studio:Tatsunoko Production
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Website: http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/anime/prettyrhythm/dmf/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Returning Director: Masakazu Hishida (Pretty Rhyhtm Aurora Dream)
  • Series Composition: Deko Akao (Nazo no Kanojo X, Astarotte's Toy)
  • Music: Seikou Nagaoka (El Hazard, Tenchi Muyo)
A new generation of girls dream of someday becoming Prism Stars. Together, they form a new group, Prizmmy☆, and work hard towards their debut.
Title: Saint Seiya Omega
Starts:Sunday, April 1 at 6:30AM JST on TV Asahi
Studio:Toei Animation
Genre:Adventure, Fantasy
Website: http://www.toei-anim.co.jp/tv/seiya/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Series Composition: Reiko Yoshida (Bakuman, D.Gray-man)
  • Cast: Hikaru Midorikawa (Fushigi Yugi's Tamahome, Brave10's Ishida Mitsunari) Hidekatsu Shibata (Fullmetal Alchemist's Fuhrer King Bradley) Junichi Suwabe (High School of the Dead's Takashi Komuro)
A spin-off of the classic manga series Saint Seiya, Omega takes place 25 years after the Holy Wars of the 20th century. Goddess Athena and a new group of Saints must prepare to take on a new evil.
Title: Saki: Achiga-hen episode of side-A
Starts:Monday, April 9 at 1:05AM JST on TV Tokyo
Studio:Studio Gokumi
Genre: Action, Tournament
Website: http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/anime/saki2/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Returning Director: Manabu Ono (Saki, Dragonaut - The Resonance)
  • Returning Character Design: Masakatsu Sasaki (Saki)
  • Cast: Aoi Yuki (Puella Magi Madoka Magica's Madoka Kaname) Kana Hanazawa (Steins;Gate's Mayuri Shiina, Princess Jellyfish's Tsukimi Kurashita) Mako (Cat God's Yoshino)
Although this new majhong series is related to the Saki manga series and anime adaptation, it's going to be a related story, rather than a direct continuation of the original. The series will have new characters.
Title: Sankarea
Starts:Friday, April 6 at 1:55AM JST on TBS
Studio:Studio DEEN
Genre: Romance, Comedy
Website: http://www.tbs.co.jp/anime/sankarea/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Original creator: Mitsuru Hattori (Concerto, Inu Neko Jump!)
  • Series Composition: Noboru Takagi (Durarara!!, Koi Kaze)
  • Music: Yukari Hashimoto (Toradora!, Kanamemo)
Furuya is obsessed with zombies. However, his hobby... comes to life when his cat dies in a tragic accident. Gambling on an old spell, he tries to revive his pet, but is caught by the beautiful idol Rea, who isn't the perfect person she appears.
Title: Sengoku Collection
Starts:Saturday, April 6 at 12:45AM JST on TV Tokyo
Studio:Brains Base
Genre: Action, Adventure
Website: http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/anime/sencolle/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Keiji Gotoh (Kiddy Grade, Uta-Kata)
  • Cast: Kana Hanazawa (Saki Achiga-hen episode of side-A) Rumi Ookubo (Acchi Kocchi, Yuruyuri)
  • Music: Tomoki Kikuya (Hidamari Sketch, Squid Girl)
Adapted from Konami's social networking service game, the story of Sengoku Collection is set in the Sengoku Era of historical Japan, with female reimaginings of important figures like Oda Nobunaga and Tokugawa Ieyasu. In the game, players can obtain "God of War Cards," which are sealed inside lucrative, hidden treasures.
Title: Shiba Inoku-san
Starts:Sunday, April 1 at 10:27PM JST on Tokyo MX
Genre: Comedy
Website: http://www.mxtv.co.jp/shibainukosan/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Original creator: Uzu (Shiba Inoku-san) [STUFF]
Inuko Shiba seems like an ordinary middle school student... but her close friend Chako Ishibashi has the nagging suspicion that her friend might actually be a dog. Each episode will be two-minutes in length.
Title: Shining Hearts ~Shiawase no Pan~
Starts:Friday, April 13 at 2:55AM JST on MBS
Studio:Production I.G
Genre: Fantasy, Romance
Website: http://shining-world.jp/hearts/info/#anime
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Cast: Cast: Kanae Ito (Cat Planet Cuties' Erisu, Queen's Blade's Airi) Mai Aizawa (Mirai Nikki's Minene Uryu, Lucky Star's Ayano Minegishi) Shiori Mikami (Kampfer's Masumi Nishino)
Adapted from Sega's Shining Hearts fantasy role-playing game, the anime will include voice actors from the PSP game. In the game, protagonist Rick is a swordsman who now works at a bakery alongside three sisters, Nellis, Amil, and Aerie. Together, they decide to help bring peace back to their country after an incident stirs the peace.
Title: Shirokuma Cafe
Starts:Thursday, April 5 at 5:30PM JST on TV TokyoL
Studio:Studio Pierrot
Genre: Comedy, Slice of Life
Website: http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/anime/shirokumacafe/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Mitsuyuki Masuhara (Chi's Sweet Home, Kobato)
  • Series Composition: Toru Hosokawa (Coji-Coji)
  • Ending Theme: "Bamboo☆Scramble." by Jun Fukuyama (Code Geass' Lelouch Lamperouge, Phi Brain's Gammon Sakanoue)
This comedy follows the daily lives and adventures of a penguins, grizzly bears, pandas, and other animals at a cafe run by a polar bear.
Title: Uchuu Kyoudai
Starts:Sunday, April 1 at 7:00AM JST on YTV
Studio:A-1 Pictures
Genre: Drama, Space
Website: http://uchukyodai.com/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Director: Ayumu Watanabe (Doraemon)
  • Music: Toshiyuki Watanabe (Devil Lady)
Two boys, Mutta and Hibito, made a vow as boys to travel to space. Hibito ended up becoming an astronaut, but Mutta's life is about to change.
Title: Yurumates 3D
Starts:Monday, April 2 at 1:35AM JST on Sun TV and 1:10AM on TV Kanagawa
Genre: Comedy, Slice of life
Website: http://www.takeshobo.co.jp/sp/tv_yuru/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Original creator: saxyun (Yurumates)
  • Returning cast: Halko Momoi (Under17 lead singer) as Yurume Aida
  • Opening Theme: Halko Momoi
Despite its name, Yurumates 3D will be a traditionally animated 2D adaption of the four-panel comic of the same name. It will retain the same cast from the two previously animated OVA series. The series will also be streamed on Nico Nico Douga.
Title: Zetman
Starts:Tuesday, April 3 at 2:38AM JST on Yomiuri TV
Studio:TMS Entertainment
Genre: Action, Science Fiction
Website: http://zetman.jp/
Notable Cast/Staff:
  • Original Creator: Masakazu Katsura (Video Girl Ai, I"s)
  • Director: Osamu Nabeshima (D.Gray-man, Sainta Seiya: The Lost Canvas)
  • Character Design: Hirotoshi Takaya (Eyeshield 21, Project ARMS)
Homeless boy Jin lives in a beggar community with his grandfather. Their lives change one day when they're attacked by a monster, and Jin discovers that his true form is the new superhuman lifeform "ZET."

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