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This Week in Anime - Could Stars Align Be This Season's Ace Anime Series?




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rahzel rose
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Joined: 19 Apr 2011
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Location: New York
PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 4:22 pm Reply with quote
I was telling a friend that this is my new Run With the Wind, so it makes me happy to see I’m not the only one who’s thinking that. Obviously it’s different, but I am loving the drama and the characters and That Ending. I have high hopes for Stars Align and I can’t wait for the next episode.
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Megiddo



Joined: 24 Aug 2005
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Location: IL
PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 4:40 pm Reply with quote
Seems a bit lavish with praise. I get the feeling these commentators haven't watched much character-centric anime as the kind of character animation in Stars Align is in the same vein as Tari Tari, Shirobako, and many other PA Works character centered shows, and I'd put it way behind the best efforts of KyoAni and Dogakobo who both excel at character animation.

That said, I'm enjoying Stars Align. It's got a Baby Steps vibe to it which I dug and the drama at the end of the first episode did hook me.
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#Synaesthesia



Joined: 30 Jan 2019
Posts: 55
PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:09 pm Reply with quote
I love this show. It's the only series this year that has a chance to top Sarazanmai as my AOTY. And I hope it's even GAYER.
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AholePony



Joined: 04 Jun 2015
Posts: 298
Location: Arizona
PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 6:38 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
....and while my gut feeling is that it's an even lighter season than usual...



Can we please stop saying this every damn season? As a long time seasonal anime watcher I am so sick of people saying. this. every. season. Especially in a professional/semi-professional capacity on a site like ANN.

I'm too lazy to look it up, but I'm 90% sure one of the contributors to this specific column said the exact same thing last season, and probably the 5 seasons prior. I mean tell me, what in the above quote even constitutes "usual"? A season with sequels to Heroaca, Shokugeki no Soma, Chihayafuru, Psycho Pass, and SAO is a "lighter than usual" season?

I personally find this oft-used comment rude to the hundreds of people working so hard to produce all of this animation. People watch maybe 5 premiers of the 40+ that air each season and flippantly say "wow this season is worse than usual". If I read this piece and was an animator or voice actor working on one of the dozens of shows this comment throws under the bus, I'd be offended.

As to the subject anime. This had a very strong premiere, I'm quite interested to see how far they take the domestic violence plot.


Last edited by AholePony on Tue Oct 22, 2019 6:44 pm; edited 1 time in total
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
Posts: 2508
PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 6:43 pm Reply with quote
Sound interesting, but it feel like another sports show where the sports is just... kinda there and doesn't really affect the story. Like the show just needed character to do something while drama is happening and just randomly pick soft tennis.
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FilthyCasual



Joined: 01 Jun 2015
Posts: 1328
PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 7:13 pm Reply with quote
Megiddo wrote:
It's got a Baby Steps vibe to it which I dug and the drama at the end of the first episode did hook me.

What makes you say that?
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Takkun4343



Joined: 19 Jul 2007
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Location: Gahanna, Ohio
PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:05 pm Reply with quote
Kickass dance moves aside, what's the plus-size girl's deal? She looks the most interesting out of the entire cast (in a good way, of course).
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#Synaesthesia



Joined: 30 Jan 2019
Posts: 55
PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:19 pm Reply with quote
Takkun4343 wrote:
Kickass dance moves aside, what's the plus-size girl's deal? She looks the most interesting out of the entire cast (in a good way, of course).

watch the show?
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DuskyPredator
It...it's not like I post for you or anything!It...it's not like I post for you or anything!


Joined: 10 Mar 2009
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Location: Brisbane, Australia
PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 9:33 pm Reply with quote
With the first episode it felt decent that it got my curiosity with its signs of heavy emotional subjects under the surface. But episode two got my attention with things like a gay character, main character specifically defying gender roles, whatever it going on with otaku girl, and the ED that is filled with diverse personality.

Did not even catch that there may be a good reason why the mother fears him, such as being violent.
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Blanchimont



Joined: 25 Feb 2012
Posts: 1905
Location: Finland
PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2019 10:44 am Reply with quote
Takkun4343 wrote:
Kickass dance moves aside, what's the plus-size girl's deal? She looks the most interesting out of the entire cast (in a good way, of course).

About those kickass moves, word on the street is they may have taken a few too many shortcuts in production;
https://kotaku.com/anime-dance-sequence-looks-similar-to-a-youtubers-chore-1839287348
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Alexis.Anagram



Joined: 26 Jan 2011
Posts: 249
Location: Mishopshno
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 1:59 am Reply with quote
The first episode left me feeling really ambivalent tbh; I didn't think the reveal about Maki's abuse was handled particularly tastefully, opting to insert it as a stinger in order upset to the standard genre read caused it to come across as dramatized and just this side of exploitative. It didn't help that his dad registered as really cartoonish; it felt like the show was leaning hard into the "twist" of it instead of constructing and situating its elements in such a way that it could command a truly visceral, empathetic reaction.

The second episode felt much stronger and more consistent with its intentions, and it's where I began to see many of the strengths referenced in this column come through. I think the promise of seeing these peripheral (or maybe they're all central?) characters come into focus will help this series keep traction provided it balances its dramatic impulses. My hope is that it doesn't devolve into ALL CAPS teenage disaster porn. These issues deserve attention and the more that the human process surrounding them is underscored the more easily the necessary feelings will emerge and land.

Megiddo wrote:
Seems a bit lavish with praise. I get the feeling these commentators haven't watched much character-centric anime as the kind of character animation in Stars Align is in the same vein as Tari Tari, Shirobako, and many other PA Works character centered shows, and I'd put it way behind the best efforts of KyoAni and Dogakobo who both excel at character animation..

I had the same impression, though animation isn't something I can speak on with any expertise. Just comparing it to other efforts I've seen in this vein, Stars Align feels fine but not remarkable. I will say I agree with Micchy and Andy on the direction though; it's very snappy and easy to follow, with a couple of fun, stylized detours here and there. I'll be interested to see how any matches or tournaments are handled.
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DavetheUsher



Joined: 19 May 2014
Posts: 158
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 8:35 am Reply with quote
Blanchimont wrote:
About those kickass moves, word on the street is they may have taken a few too many shortcuts in production;
https://kotaku.com/anime-dance-sequence-looks-similar-to-a-youtubers-chore-1839287348


A girl on Nico Nico Douga is also saying they used her dance too.

https://twitter.com/miko02xxx/status/1186936005066022912
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Kirki



Joined: 11 Jun 2019
Posts: 28
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2019 7:19 am Reply with quote
AholePony wrote:
Quote:
....and while my gut feeling is that it's an even lighter season than usual...



Can we please stop saying this every damn season? As a long time seasonal anime watcher I am so sick of people saying. this. every. season. Especially in a professional/semi-professional capacity on a site like ANN.

I'm too lazy to look it up, but I'm 90% sure one of the contributors to this specific column said the exact same thing last season, and probably the 5 seasons prior. I mean tell me, what in the above quote even constitutes "usual"? A season with sequels to Heroaca, Shokugeki no Soma, Chihayafuru, Psycho Pass, and SAO is a "lighter than usual" season?

I personally find this oft-used comment rude to the hundreds of people working so hard to produce all of this animation. People watch maybe 5 premiers of the 40+ that air each season and flippantly say "wow this season is worse than usual". If I read this piece and was an animator or voice actor working on one of the dozens of shows this comment throws under the bus, I'd be offended.

As to the subject anime. This had a very strong premiere, I'm quite interested to see how far they take the domestic violence plot.


I don't think it was ill-intended, it's just that when you are into anime for many years, there aren't many things left that can surprise you or move your interest in the same way they would have for a beginner.

I have seen this multiple times with people saying "oh my God old anime were SO much better, the Golden Age is over, we will never have anything like this ever again, they don't do anime like that nowadays", the so called old-man syndrome. *Back in MY days....* etc etc. When in reality, they usually only feel special because you saw them first.

Generally I think the quality has improved a lot. But the quantity has increased as well. Let's face it, any show more or less either has that special spark or it doesn't. Stars Align has it. The majority of the rest of the season does not. But does this mean it is a "light" season? I don't think so. I think that comparing it to what we usually get, it is a decent season, because there are more interesting picks than usual. In fact, I only remember one season (from 2006?) that it was almost full of hits that are considered classic until this day. Normally the duds far outnumber the hits, since always.

That said, I don't think we should applaude mediocrity. If a show is mediocre, that will show up in their sales; just because there are people who have worked on it, this doesn't mean it shouldn't be pointed out.
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