All Exec members were in attendance.
It’s a new exec, and since we’re meeting on a Friday (save us), we’ve decided to start off with Main Series voting! A bit of an atypical format, but it should save some time compared to the usual 8 hour meetings.
Conran begins by explaining the voting format to the new exec, and this time, we even have a whiteboard to vote on - usually we’d do this all on a blackboard so some of us are overjoyed at the lack of chalk. Andrew wished to last-minute propose Hidamari Sketch for the voting process, so we added it to the table.
Main Series Choices
We then kicked things off by going into all the choices. We tried to put up Sonny Boy, but after realising we’d veto Vivy (again) if it came up, we decided to remove it from the list as well as it’s only fair. One last thing before we get into the choices, THE DISPLAY. THE DISPLAY IN THIS ROOM FORCED EVERYTHING TO 60FPS. SO ALL THE OPENINGS LOOKED HORRID (to me, Jack, Alex and Hawari at least).
- BNA - Jack’s choice - A Studio Trigger show that really can only be best explained by “it’s Studio Trigger”. Follows beastmen, a group of people who can transform to anthropomorphic animals, and their adventures in Anima City, with a touch of a murder mystery. With brilliant animation, but an easy to swallow story, it’s got some good stuff going for it. Has the Ana and Alex seal of approval as well (and Tomas’! Arman told me I need to move on from the old exec but WE HAD AN ERA OK).
- Btooom! - Ethan’s choice - THE NANO OPENING. Also the only show to get a pre-amble rant about fanservice, unfortunately for Ethan. The show follows a survival battle-royale format and doesn’t take itself too seriously. An absolute gamer man (Ethan who?) is Japan’s number one player of a game called Btooom! and wakes up to find someone is making the game happen in real life. Marketed as a “actually half decent survival game”, it does have a pretty big fanservice deficit. We got Alex to “explain the fanservice” which was probably our biggest mistake in the history of the exec as we got a detailed account of exactly what’s wrong with this show.
- Gunslinger Girl - Alex’s choice - Recognise this one? That’s right; when you fail once, try again. Alex brought GG back to the pitch table, a poignant anime about child assassins and the meaning of freedom. Some niche internet microcelebrities have apparently named this as “boomer LycoReco” but as a massive LycoReco fan I have to say it sounds significantly darker and grittier.
- Hataraku Maou-Sama - Arman’s choice - Previously winning a Member’s Choice (which might do it less favours), this show has already been received well by our Anisoc audience. Satan literally reincarnates into a McDonald’s worker. Sorry, “MgRonald’s”. Brilliantly funny premise, but raises questions of popularity. I did make a comment that the opening could have come straight out of Highschool DxD and I don’t think it was appreciated. But of course, well executed comedy is never out of place in Anisoc.
- Heike Monogatari - Conran’s choice - We started talking about the director at first, who has had shows like Sound! Euphonium under her belt (happy Ana noises). The group was also confused as to how I hadn’t seen Liz and the Blue Bird despite loving Hibike, but I digress. This show has been pitched MANY times (but not made Main Series) and even given a previous Exec Choice, and was released in 2021. Inu-oh, our most recent Movie Night showing, picks up from a time period just around the end of Heike Monogatari. This is a brilliantly human story following the downfall of the Heike clan, a real historical clan, through the eyes of Biwa, a girl who didn’t exist historically. A true character drama. Alex, Conran and Andrew hugely backed this show up; but the long names and remembering plotlines might be difficult in this format.
- ID: INVADED - Ana’s choice - I basically ranted about this show for ages; imagine a Nolan film crossed with PSYCHO-PASS concepts but still with a completely different outlook and set of ideas. Also had Alex’s seal of approval, it follows the Mizuhanome system, an out-of-the-box computer system that allows its pilots to enter the unconscious mind of killers. With a soundtrack by the amazing MIYAVI and a. Unfortunately, Alex and I agreed it needed a few more episodes to wrap the ending up, but with a super strong first episode, and one of the best middles, we agreed it deserves a HUGE chance up here.
- Kakushigoto - Alex’s choice - A previous Conran exec choice, this is a comedy show that actually has a really comfy atmosphere. Follows a man who draws explicit manga trying to be a good single parent to his young daughter, and has plenty of light-hearted gags. Comedy isn’t the dominant theme though - it’s interspersed with a lot of fun, slice of life aspects. Quite the comfort anime, and has a bit of a tearjerker moment too. We’ve also watched almost all of the manga author’s works so this would be a welcome addition.
- Kokoro Connect - Arman’s choice - An interesting premise of body-switching between a group of high school friends, but unfortunately, we all kind of trashed this show in discussion (somewhat including Arman himself). Kokoro Connect can be summarised as intensely mediocre as per a few of us and we all agreed rewatching would probably lower what we’ve all rated it. The satisfying ending only comes in a 4 episode extra OVA too :(
- *Land of the Lustrous* - Jack’s choice - The last remnants of humanity are gemstones, fighting against
- Made In Abyss - Alex’s choice - We prefaced this by warning Alex he’s got a HARD SELL. It’s a show that relies on huge world-building and has brilliant animation. But we vetoed this show from a perspective that it might be a bit too grim to watch, especially considering it follows children.
- Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team - Ana’s choice - A Gundam story that focuses on a more small-scale war compared to the typical flashy space battles, following the 08th MS Team from the Earth Federation warring against some forces of the Principality of Zeon. With a bop of an opening too, it has a really great storyline and is an excellent starter to the world of Gundam. Arman raised concerns about the aspect ratio driving people away (which is fair after some of The Big O prejudice), but I did retort with “if you’re leaving because ‘I PERSONALLY DO NOT LIKE SQUARES’, you should probably reconsider taste”.
- Odd Taxi - Hawari’s choice - Everyone was tapping away to the opening, and we didn’t quite explain the plot in too much detail to not give it away. Hawari and Andrew explained the dialogue in the first episode is beautiful, and I said it had a very rewarding rewatchability aspect to which they both agreed. However, it raises the question of 2021 popularity (which puts Moriarty in a similar position) and the first episode is slightly slow. We discussed the same set of points to death but, in many of our opinions, it’s one of 2021’s best and a thoroughly excellent watch.
- Paranoia Agent - Alex’s choice - “SHONEN BAT?!” This show has gone up MANY times and for good reason - it explores the power of rumours and ideas and a society-wide game of Chinese whispers. It also apparently has a content warning - wow, an anime doing my job for me! It is apparently a quintessential, thought-provoking show that doesn’t remain pretentious; but still, considering our amount of Satoshi Kon screenings, it might be one too many. Nonetheless, Alex defended this to the core and we appreciated how each Kon story has a different flair to it.
- PLASTIC MEMORIES - Ethan’s choice - Quite popular show about androids with expiry dates, and what happens to them when they near the end of their lives. Ethan holds this one dear to him but prefers Angel Beats - the rest of the exec (except me, haven’t seen this one) wildly disagree and prefer PM. Emotional and tearjerking, it was branded as quite nice across the board.
- White Album 2 - Ana’s choice -
- Yuukoku no Moriarty - Ana’s choice -
- **Hidamari Sketch -**** Andrew’s choice - A slice of lifey comedy that follows 4 girls and their lives at an arts school. Another comfort anime on the list, it’s got plenty of wholesome action. Alex and Andrew explained it was not fanservicey at all and any gags in the series were used tastefully.
Here are the pictures as per usual!
And with that, there’s our final Main Series:
- Gunslinger Girl
- Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team
- Odd Taxi
Then, the next order of business is sorting out our timetable for this half of term. We talked about holding BFK and settled on Week 10, end of Term 3, as per usual. We also noted to amend the timetable for Thursday Week 6 as we’re holding a meal social then, and not Wednesday.
We also mentioned there’s a screening of Kaguya-sama’s new movie special at Showcase Cinema on Wednesday of Week 6. Jack and Ethan agreed to be the exec supervising for that. We decided to put out an interest announcement ASAP.
We talked about the upcoming UWCS collab as well that had been proposed - we decided to explore the option of looking into attending their Friday Night Gaming event. We also mentioned the need for a new Anisoc Draws event to come up soon, and the librarians agreed that the library would need to be present at this social. We’d iron out a plan for deposits soon as well.
We then discussed collaborations between other universities, specifically Birmingham or Lancaster, but this quickly moved forward into discussion on attending HoloFes, for all the HoloLive fans out there.
We then had a pretty large gap on the timetable, which we discussed filling in relation to not knowing whether we had upcoming collabs.
And of course, we had to talk about Costco prices. Hawari made a huge point about a 17p vs 7p per cup difference which is very important in our current “we really don’t have any money as a society” climate. No discussion is complete without talking about Goody’s as well. We talked about who is the most trusted driver in the exec, and someone mentioned several members that have cars to transport us to Costco (which we immediately vetoed because those might be our last car rides ever).
The following discussion is real and factual:
“What if we bought frozen pizza and used my oven?” - Ethan
“What if we got all the Westwood freshers to use their ovens for simultaneous pizza?” - Hawari
“We have THREE Westwood kitchens at our disposal!” - Ethan
“You won’t be in Westwood next year…” - Conran
“It is a temporary solution.” - Ethan
We also briefly touched on handover packs, and how we’d need to provide our details to Conran ASAP. And we also decided to change the way we count Main Series voting to prevent the whole “last show wins” paradox - we’ll count the votes privately and announce the final winner once all counted.
We then finally talked about the new exec’s responsibilities - Conran went through the specifics of the roles and the procedures for Exec Choices and showings.