Mid-Autumn 2021 Anime Ranking


01. Irina: The Vampire Cosmonaut (Tsuki to Laika to Nosferatu) (ep. 1-9) – Aside from the fact that the star is a vampire girl, this series is a convincingly realistic portrayal of astronaut training and the politics of the USSR-USA space race during the 1950s.

Irina receives the same training as the human candidates, but she is regarded as an expendable test subject, just a step up from the animals that have been sent into space before her. There are some of the same social/moral issues as in 86 EIGHTY-SIX in how she is exceptionally skilled, but unfairly treated as less than human. I also find it a little bit hard to believe that they would consider Irina to be so easily expendable. It can’t be a simple task to find such a willing participant, who could potentially help them with numerous test flights. But I guess they are ultimately also afraid of her, and of having her existence revealed to the public.
(streaming at Funimation)


02. 86 EIGHTY-SIX (ep. 12-19) – The drastic change in setting is a welcome development for this second part of 86 EIGHTY-SIX.

I appreciate the Federacy’s concern about enlisting the 86ers and pressuring them into dangerous combat once more, but it’s a bit heavy-handed in my opinion. Fighting is all these kids have known for so long; it’s what they are good at, as sad as that is. The important point is that they now have the freedom to choose, and I hope, to be respected and fairly compensated for their service.
(streaming at Crunchyroll)


03. The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window (Sankaku Mado no Sotogawa wa Yoru) (ep. 1-10)
(streaming at Crunchyroll)


04. The Heike Story (Heike Monogatari) (ep. 1-10) – I don’t know enough about the history of the time to follow the story 100%, especially given all the time skips, but it’s not hard to understand the main points. It’s interesting that there are numerous tales of warlords fighting valiant battles, also of powerful clans abusing their authority. However, it’s rare to see what happens when a once-powerful family falls and the entire clan is left wandering and homeless, which is something that must have occurred commonly during those times, if they were lucky enough to escape with their lives at all, that is.
(streaming at Funimation)


05. BLUE PERIOD (ep. 1-8)
(streaming at Netflix)


06. Puraore!~PRIDE OF ORANGE~ (ep. 1-9) – Obviously we had to check out the ice hockey anime! Well, it also happens to be a cute girls anime, so that sort of tempered any expectations we might have had. Fortunately, other than the occasional reference to an idol-style song and dance routine, Puraore! is a pretty respectable sports show so far; and the hockey (and dance) animation is very good.
(streaming at Funimation)

Also started, but did not get far enough to include in the ranking:

The World’s Finest Assassin Gets Reincarnated in Another World as an Aristocrat (Sekai Saikou no Ansatsusha, Isekai Kizoku ni Tensei suru) (ep. 1-5)
(streaming at Crunchyroll)

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Stone Ocean (JoJo no Kimyou na Bouken Part 6: Stone Ocean) (ep. 1-4)
(streaming at Netflix)

Also started, and DROPPED:

takt op.Destiny (ep. 1-4)
VISUAL PRISON (ep. 1-5)

Also intending to resume, but haven’t yet:

Demon Slayer: Entertainment District Arc
TSUKIPRO THE ANIMATION 2