Anime OVAs are often the more lighthearted and fanservice packed episodes.

But they can also be great additions to the main story – they can provide interesting backstories, a better closure for the story or a more in-depth experience of the story.

Here are my five favorite OVA episodes. I didn’t rank the picks because I realized its actually quite hard to do it xD

Bungou Stray Dogs: Hitori Ayumu (MAL link)

The Bungou Stray Dogs OVA gives us a certain important detail we haven’t found out in the main story. This alone makes it stand out from the common lighthearted OVA episodes.

Kunikida is trying to go with his day as he planned, with Dazai trying to ruin that for him.

A very well-made episode that expands on Kunikida’s character and makes you appreciate him more.

Steins;Gate Oukoubakko no Poriomania (MAL link)

After the thrilling and emotional experience of Steins;Gate, this was a refreshing and fun way to expand on the story.

And it introduced some Steins;Gate 0 characters along the way.

Steins;Gate 0 also had an OVA, but it was much less related to the main story, which kind of left me dissapointed.

Shirobako Specials (MAL link)

P.A. Works really made two one off episodes of two different anime for the OVA of their anime about making anime.

It just makes the whole Shirobako experience even better.

You get the feeling as if Musashino Animation really does exist – they even wrote the names of the Shirobako characters in the ending credits.

And the episodes themselves are more than decent quality to say the least – especially the “Third Aerial Girls Squad” one.

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood Specials (MAL link)

The Fullmetal Alchemist OVA gave some great backstory content. It’s definitely not one of those OVAs you can skip without missing anything too significant.

Roy Mustang is my favorite character of the series, so it may give you an idea on which episode of this OVA I enjoyed the most.

Gabriel Dropout OVA (MAL link)

Gabriel Dropout provided some great fun with 4 memorable characters.

But it never really had any emotional moments, as you would expect from an anime of its kind.

That was until I saw the OVA. The feels the second episode has provided was just something I did not expect from Gabriel Dropout.

This is the only OVA on the list that actually has a higher MAL rating than its “main” anime and I think I understand why.

 

Are you surprised with my picks? Am I missing out on an OVA that you really love? Let me know in the comments!

Time for a new opening breakdown! The last one I did was for Kaguya-sama: Love is War, which was now 2 months ago. And in that case it was actually a breakdown of the ending sequence, but you get the point (I hope).

Studio Bones has really shown that they know how to make their openings and endings look fantastic. Especially with those 2 special openings at the start of Bungou Stray Dogs season 2.

Both of them just looked so classy, so fitting for the mood. Not to mention the song that was a true banger. I still keep coming back to those openings because I simply love them so much.

With season 3 came another few backstory episodes and with that another special opening sequence, mostly featuring Chuuya and Dazai.

I did love that sequence as well, but it hasn’t quite reached those highs of the special openings from season 2. I could actually say the similar thing for the episodes itself.

In this post I won’t talk about the special opening sequence for the backstory but the “regular” one that made its debut in episode 4.

Once again, its classy and impressive looking.

The sequence

Around half of the sequence is made of introducing the most important characters one by one. And while each of those parts looks great in its own way, there is not much I can comment on them other than saying that “character x is standing”, and so on and so on.

I do have to say I especially love the colors of the Chuuya visual. And the sky on Kunikida’s part. I’m a simple man, you can always impress me with some nice-looking dusk.

Could this potentially foreshadow some internal Port Mafia fighting between Chuuya and Akutagawa?

I could be just nitpicking but notice how Yosano is the only character who walks across the scene in one of these shots…

Are Mori and Fukuzawa finally going to have a proper fight? I would actually assume not. Seeing how strong a certain upcoming villain is, I can see another alliance between Port Mafia and the Armed Detective Agency likely.

A cat jumps towards the camera and a new character is shown. I don’t know much about this but I do wonder about the cats in Bungou Stray Dogs as they were seen in the previous opening sequences as well.

Will Atsushi and Akutagawa fight each other yet again? It happened in each of the seasons so far and the movie, hasn’t it? But there is Dazai and Chuuya in this shot as well so perhaps the 4 of them will be in combat.

Sakaguchi Ango is seen using an ability. I already can’t wait to see what’s it going to be. And considering how many organizations Ango has ties with, I’m not sure if he will fight with or against our protagonists.

Looks like The Guild will return. I’m sure Fitzgerald is looking for revenge on the two that we see in the next shot…

Mori has reasons to worry because the Port Mafia has a dangerous threat on the way.

I’m talking about Fyodor ofcourse. He is one of the best villains I’ve seen recently. Quite simply, he is badass. He is incredibly strong, meaning he is a huge threat to both the Armed Detective Agency and Port Mafia.

On top of all that, we still don’t know how his ability really works, which makes him a mysterious character as well. So much to look forward to in season 3 thanks to Fyodor.

Ending the sequence we see pretty much all of the most important characters… Perhaps uniting against Fyodor?

Conclusion

All in all, a sequence that does its job of hyping you up well.

My main curious points are the cat and Sakaguchi Ango. What kind of role will he play? Will it be positive or negative?

And again – Fyodor. What even is he? How can anyone be so intelligent and strong? Is there any way to beat him?

Songwise and visually I do prefer the first special opening from season 2. But that one has set the standards quite high it has to be said.

In terms of the ending sequence, it features a lot of flashbacks, reused scenes from the earlier seasons and movie. And a lot of them are of characters crying, both from Port Mafia and the Armed Agency. Will things turn out that badly?

Also, Dazai is keeping Odasaku in his mind, looking thoughtful on what I assume is his grave. Odasaku got his own crying moment in the ending sequence as well.

This does lead me to think that Ango will be on the negative side this season afterall but let’s wait and see.

 

Over to you, what do you think of the new Bungou Stray Dogs opening? Please feel free to discuss it in the comments!

 

Affiliate links

You can find the Bungou Stray Dogs light novels and manga on Bookdepository.

Check out the Bungou Stray Dogs merchandise on Amazon.

I started watching Bungou Stray Dogs right on time to finish the first 2 seasons and the movie before the start of season 3.

And while season 1 was already pretty great, the epicness of season 2 almost makes it look weak in comparison.

Especially those first 4 episodes which focused on Dazai’s time in Port Mafia through the eyes of a new character Odasaku.

I don’t remember a more impactful and memorable set of 4 episodes which were actually a backstory. It was really that amazing. I thought while watching it that season 2 would entirely focus on Dazai’s past and honestly I would be so happy if that was right.

You can imagine then how happy I was to realize that season 3 will seemingly expand even more on Dazai’s past.

This time on the events from even further back in time. Back when Dazai was given his very first Port Mafia job. At least that’s what the boss said in episode 1.

Chuuya’s past

It’s not just Dazai’s story the episode expanded on. We also see how Chuuya Nakahara started working with the Port Mafia.

As a 15-year old he was the “King of the Sheep”, an organization full of younger members it seems.

He wanted to kill all the Port Mafia members. For what exact reason, it hasn’t been revealed yet, unless I somehow missed out on it.

Rumours of the old Port Mafia boss being alive have emerged. If it turns out true, that’s bad news for the current leader, Mori, as the truth about the old boss’ death would likely be revealed.

Dazai’s first job was to look into those rumors. After meeting with Hirotsu, he ends up in a fight with Chuuya.

Soon enough Chuuya got brought to the Port Mafia boss. The boss believed Chuuya has similar goals to Port Mafia in finding out about the rumors, so he pressures Chuuya into working with the Mafia.

Eventually he does side with the Mafia, and goes with Dazai to investigate. An armed man approaches them and as Chuuya gets excited over beating him, Dazai looks at him unimpressed.

Their relationship really didn’t change a lot over the years.

My thoughts

Really hyped for more of the Port Mafia past. I could almost say I enjoy the “backstory” episodes more than the main storyline.

For this reason I can already tell I’m really gonna love season 3 of Bungou Stray Dogs. Its shaping up to be a very fun story with the old Port Mafia boss coming back. We haven’t actually seen the current boss Mori in a real fight haven’t we?

Surely this is the best opportunity yet to see that happen.

Speaking of Mori, he said Dazai reminds him of himself. We saw what was Dazai’s first job in the Port Mafia but I do wonder how were things for him before he joined them. How did Port Mafia find out about him and what made them want him as a member?

I also wonder if this will once again be a 4 episode backstory. And will there be special opening visuals once again? The two ones they did in season 2 really raised the bar – it was so stylish, so dark and fitting. I’m not sure if I can even find the right words.

Songwise I prefer the season 2 opening by a long way. But the quality of that song is really hard to match so its actually not surprising to me.

I am counting on the new opening song to grow on me. It mostly does happen anyway.

Not much else I have to say. Just pure excitement for more.

If you feel the similar way (or not) about Bungou Stray Dogs season 3 please let me know in the comments!

With the first anime season of 2019 behind us, it’s already time to focus on the upcoming Spring 2019 anime season.

I checked out the synopsis and available PVs for each of the titles offered, and these are the anime I’m most likely to watch:

Isekai Quartet (MAL link)

Yes, really.

I usually don’t really watch the chibi spin-offs of anime series. I think the only one I’ve seen was Toradora SOS, and as much as it pains me to say it, it wasn’t really good.

But a crossover of isekai anime sounds like an interesting concept so I want to see what they will do with it.

Even if I haven’t seen Youjo Senki nor Overlord, which will feature in this along with Re:Zero and Konosuba.

Bungou Stray Dogs Season 3 (MAL link)

I started watching Bungou Stray Dogs right on time to finish the first two seasons before the third one starts airing.

Season 1 was hugely enjoyable, and I have no doubts the second season and this upcoming third one will be the same.

Fruits Basket (MAL link)

I don’t know much about Fruits Basket and its 2001 adaptation.

But I do know the manga seems to be highly rated, and the PV has convinced me that its worth checking it out.

Shoumetsu Toshi (MAL link)

Not sure what to really say here.

The story looks good, the PV is very well made, the music is very cool. And it’s made by Madhouse.

All good enough reasons to check this anime out.

Senryuu Shoujo (MAL link)

The Senryuu Shoujo synopsis sounded a bit too silly for me to watch.

But then I looked at the PV, realized Kana Hanazawa is voicing the female lead, and already fell in love with the ending song.

And besides, I thought Kaguya-sama: Love is War had a too silly synopsis at first, until I watched it and ended up loving it a lot more than I expected.

Kono Yo no Hate de Koi wo Utau Shoujo YU-NO (MAL link)

An anime exploring parallel worlds and alternate dimensions with the legendary Rie Kugimiya as part of the cast?

Count me as interested!

Plus, I’ve seen some comparisons of the visual novel to Steins;Gate and Clannad.

If this will be even slightly as good as Steins;Gate, it’s gonna be worth the watch.

Gunjou no Magmel (MAL link)

I like the concept of exploring a new continent, and I like the music from the PV.

But I do hope there will be more to this than simply killing off the creatures of the new continent.

If anything, apparently Yoshihiro Togashi, the mastermind behind Hunter x Hunter has recommended this manga. At least I’ve read so in a MAL forum thread.

Kimetsu no Yaiba (MAL link)

This seems to be the Spring season’s title that many manga readers are hyping up as the “next big thing”.

I’ve already seen people putting this among the next ‘big 3’ along with My Hero Academia and The Promised Neverland.

I’m not gonna comment on that but I am gonna give this anime a go. It’s always risky to start something due to its hype but it payed off with The Promised Neverland and Kaguya-sama: Love is War…

I just wish the actual anime PV is available in my country. The one I linked here is VIZ media’s trailer for the manga.

Do you agree with my picks for Spring 2019? Is there a hidden gem that I’m gonna miss out on? Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments!

Another season of anime is behind us! We are already one-quarter into 2019…

Just as I did at the end of the Fall 2018 anime season – I’m gonna go through all the anime I’ve watched in Winter 2019, be it seasonal, non-seasonal, or a rewatch.

Seasonal anime

Boogiepop wa Warawanai

I do enjoy watching Boogiepop but it’s really not an anime you would watch weekly. After watching the first 2 episodes that way, I already felt confused with the events and characters so I decided to restart my watching.

Now I’m just at the start of the second half of the series and I’ll get to finishing the remaining episodes soon.

It’s also not an anime I’d watch at any time other than late night. The music and the whole mood just fit that time so well. But I guess that’s expected from something with the Horror tag isn’t it?

Circlet Princess

If you’re into ecchi you’ll love this, but don’t expect anything high quality in the other aspects.

I gave Circlet Princess the famous ‘3-episode rule’ chance but I haven’t continued it since, and I doubt this will change.

Here you can read my first impressions post for this from January.

Dimension High School

Unlike Circlet Princess, I actually finished this anime.

And I actually… dare I say it… kind of enjoyed it? It was so different that it was interesting enough to keep me for the full 12 episodes.

Although pretty much everything about this was bad, at least I ended up discovering a great ending song. And the ability to say that I’ve finished something that had a score of under 5 on myanimelist for most of its airing time.

My first impressions on Dimension High School from January are here.

Sword Art Online: Alicization

Sword Art Online: Alicization is coming towards the end of its part 1.

At the time of writing, the latest episode aired is episode 23. And I have to say that the events of that episode have left me disappointed with certain things.

All I’ll say is that, spoiler alert:

Eugeo deserves better.

This is my breakdown of the second Alicization opening. Recently they updated the opening, which I covered here.

The Rising of the Shield Hero

I’m still enjoying The Rising of the Shield Hero even if its an anime that makes me annoyed in pretty much every episode.

Annoyed at all those characters that are constantly undermining Naofumi.

Rarely is watching someone being a jerk to others as satisfying as it is seeing Naofumi treat the others in a similar way that they treated him.

The Rising of the Shield Hero was the very first Winter 2019 anime I wrote my first impressions on. You can read that here.

The Promised Neverland

This really had everything – the story, the suspense, likeable characters, music, impactful scenes…

And I’m so happy that in this time of awesome anime announcements, we’ve been informed there will be a second season.

Still, I’m very seriously thinking of buying the manga volumes. I need more of this and I need it fast.

My first impressions on The Promised Neverland from January are here.

And my episode 10 review is here.

Kaguya-sama: Love is War

Imagine if Chika Fujiwara’s dance didn’t blow up on the internet and various funny screenshots from every Kaguya-sama episode weren’t on my twitter timeline.

I would probably never start Kaguya-sama: Love is War, and I would miss out on what is honestly turning into one of my favorite anime in general.

That’s how much I love it. And my Saturdays are about to feel really empty without this anime.

Till a second season hopefully happens, this is another anime I’m probably gonna buy the manga for when possible. Apparently some Hayasaka chapters have been skipped and I just can’t keep living without reading those.

I have no first impressions post for this but I do have a breakdown of the ending sequence which you can see here.

W’z

Looking back on W’z, its an anime with very nice visuals and sound but hugely lacking in the story.

And the fact that its a sequel to something I didn’t saw before doesn’t help matters.

You can read my first impressions post on it here. But this anime also appears in my post where I listed my dropped anime…

Non-seasonal

Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun

March has seen me return to watching more non-seasonal anime, and one of them was Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun.

I really liked this. In terms of comedy its actually one of the better anime I’ve seen. It actually gave me slight Kaguya-sama vibes because of the comedy and random emotional moments with beautiful music…

I barely see anyone talk about this anime but I’d love another season.

Bungou Stray Dogs

How is this rated under 8 on myanimelist? And why am I even surprised with the myanimelist ratings anymore?

Anyway, Bungou Stray Dogs is awesome. But it’s probably another anime I’d put on my list of shows with better side characters than the main one. Before starting it, I actually thought Dazai was the main character.

I have more than enough time to finish season 2 and jump straight into the upcoming season 3.

Sakura Quest

When searching for an anime that would give me a similar feel to the amazing Shirobako, I saw Sakura Quest mentioned along with Hanasaku Iroha.

I think I understand why. Sakura Quest does have slight Shirobako vibes, not to mention the art style. But they are from the same studio anyway.

I’m really enjoying the aspect of living in a smaller city. Although if I remember correctly, they stated that Manoyama has 55 thousand inhabitants, which is actually even more than the city I lived in till very recently.

I’m now sort of living in a village so I can relate with the ‘moving from a city to a smaller area’ aspect.

No Game No Life: Zero

No GameĀ  No Life: Zero could have been amazing if it wasn’t for my main problems with the series reoccurring.

In lack of a better word – it’s the asspulls. I was yet again left wondering how exactly were the events made possible and what did actually happen.

Maybe I’m just too stupid for this series? Probably.

Noragami

Noragami was fine. But not without its issues. Mainly I’d say the predictability and a few moments of the characters getting out of situations that looked too hard to be saved from.

How do I say it? I guess some resolutions to the events didn’t feel satisfying enough.

ReLIFE

ReLIFE was really worth watching. The concept was simple, and it’s essentially just a school anime with a twist, but it was a really unique twist and it felt strangely nostalgic.

Even if I’m still only the first year of college and I was in high school just last year.

I reviewed this anime, but as a guest post.

Accel World

Accel World has left me in that awkward situation of starting a series and then simply not returning to it with no definite reason why.

I saw the first two episodes and they weren’t even that bad. Yet for some reason I just didn’t return to it since. It’s already been two months.

But at least it’s not been on my on-hold list since June 2018, as Mushishi currently is.

And that’s pretty much what I watched in Winter 2019. Here is to an even more fun Spring 2019 anime season!