End-of-Month Rundown – June 2013

june

June is history, as are all the Spring series, except for MJP and Railgun, which will continue. A couple series swapped places with others, but no seismic shifts to behold; Aku no Hana was the unquestioned King of the Spring, and will go down as one of our favorite series as well, regardless of how or when it ends. Gargantia has also come on strong in its later episodes. How did the other eight fare? Let’s turn on the RABUJuice and see what shakes loose…

10. Kakumeiki Valvrave 12/12 (6.583) – Valvrave continued to bring up the rear as its first season ends (the second is coming in the Fall), with the most uneven tone of all the Spring series and the questionable inclusion of a scene of sexual assault. It makes things far more serious…but we’re not sure we needed them too be! Still, we’ll be watching this Fall, if only to see what other shocking turns this series is willing to make

9. Ginga Kikoutai Majestic Prince 12/24 (6.750) –  In the final episodes the Princes learn the truth about the Wulgaru: they’re not mindless monsters, but actually the progenitors of humanity, and kind of assholes to boot! Thankfully one of them – Theoria – isn’t an asshole, and is helping humans fight her people off. The Mars mission was another example of the Rabbits getting things done their own way, while the latest episode continued the trend of slice-of-life cooling-down periods after big ops

8. Oregairu 13/13 (6.923) – One school cultural festival wasn’t enough for Oregairu…it needed an athletics festival too! But as farewells go it wasn’t bad, showing that Hikky’s high school romantic comedy may not be what he expected, but turned out to be pretty fun to watch and the pointed, fizzy banter never disappointed

7. Toaru Kagaku no Railgun S – 12/24 (7.167) –  Misaka clashes with the mercenary group ITEM, led by a Level 5 esper just one rung below her (and thinks she’s better anyway). Mikoto stubornly refuses to lie down and die for them, much to their chagrin. As Mikoto learrns that the Sisters project is being tacitly condoned by practically the entire city, she prepares to fight that city – on her own, if necessary. She aims to misbehave

6. Oreimo 2 13/13 (7.538) – Oreimo 2 took the harem angle to the extreme by giving Kyousuke his own place where all of the girls in his life could descend and fight over him, but order is restored by Kuroneko, who is now very open about her love with him. Ayase also finally confesses to him, having punished him all this time for her own repressed feelings. The finale was a cute origin story: how much Kirino loved her brother and how they drifted away before the events of the last two seasons

5. RDG: Red Data Girl – 12/12 (7.583) – RDG’s climactic school festival culminated in the series best episode – a finale that encapsulated everything we liked about the series: the unique atmosphere and aura, the hidden worlds its characters created, the lovely chemistry and budding love between the two leads, and antagonists who aren’t just pure evil. The story definitely has legs for a second cour/season

4. Hataraku Maou-sama! – 13/13 (7.615) – Like RDG, the series ended strong, albeit in its penultimate episode, with tons of action and comedy, securing Hataraku’s Bronze finish among Spring series. Maou proved yet again to Emi and Suzuno that in this world, he is a good and honest person, and practically everyone got a nice sendoff in the epilogue-like last episode

3. Suisei no Gargantia 13/13  (8.308) – Things for the new Flange/Pinion fleet go sour fast as they encounter a fleet ruled with an iron fist by Ledo’s Commander Kugel – only Kugel has been long dead and his mecha Striker is calling the shots. It’s an awesome twist that leads to some even awsomer arguing between Striker and Chamber, who nobly sacrifices himself so his pilot can live on on Gargantia with Amy

2. Chihayafuru 2 25/25 (8.364) – Chihaya is beaten by Shinobu, who is then dispatched by Arata without too much difficulty. The wonderful finale a recovering Chihaya is still caught between Arata and Taichi, but understands a little more about how important she’s been to Arata’s success, and how much her love of karuta revolves around her love for him. Taichi, meanwhile, must work harder if he wants her heart

1. Aku no Hana – 13/13 (8.538) – With his normal life crumbling under the weight of his sins, Kasuga tries to escape to the other side of the hill with Nakamura…but can’t. He ends up pushing both girls away, but can’t leave Nakamura alone for long. In the stirring final episode Kasuga remembers everything that’s happened and everything that might potentially happen in the future, and reasserts his devotion to Nakamura. We thought waiting a week for the next episode was bad, but now we’ll have to wait an unknown amount of time for something else: the confirmation of a Part Two, and its air date. Our lives will be as incomplete as Kasuga’s without those things