Fall 2022 Might Be One of the Best Anime Seasons Ever
I'm going to lose my goddamn mind this fall
2022 has essentially been The Year That All The Pandemic-Delayed Things Have Finally Been Able To Happen In Some Way, Shape, Or Form. Not the punchiest name, sure. But I’ve noticed it everywhere: in delayed concert tours, theatrical productions, study abroad programs. And I have the feeling that we’re seeing it in anime as well. Over two years of COVID-complicated work patterns seems to have built up to this breaking point. Because everything is coming in October. And it’s likely going to make Fall 2022 one of the greatest anime seasons ever.
Every show announcement I’ve been ridiculously excited for in the last year has had the same release date: October 2022. For some, it’s the second half of an already superb season. For others, it’s the climax of a character arc 25 years in the making. And for still yet more, it’s a new season that fans weren’t entirely sure was coming. When Chainsaw Man officially joined the October Mania at Crunchyroll Expo, it became official. October 2022 is about to be absurd.
I want to give each of these shows their moment in the sun, so you can understand exactly how ridiculous the fall anime season is going to be. And I didn’t even mention To Your Eternity. All of these will be streaming on Crunchyroll (except Bleach), by the way.
After witnessing its reception at Anime Expo first-hand, I predicted that Chainsaw Man is about to become The Next Big Thing in anime. This is now substantially backed up by the fact that the second trailer for the series garnered 4.8 MILLION views in LESS THAN TWENTY-FOUR HOURS. I think we’re talking Attack on Titan-level ubiquity here. And judging from my experience with how absurdly engrossing the manga is, combined with the gorgeous and gory-as-hell previews of MAPPA’s always-quality animation … yeah, I think that’s going to be deserved.
I was honestly expecting the Chainsaw Man anime to be coming in 2023. I didn’t expect an announcement in early August that it was coming in merely two months. But I suppose that’s part of Crunchyroll’s marketing genius, eh?
Spy x Family: Cour 2
Just like with Chainsaw Man, the writing was on the wall about how popular the Spy x Family anime would be ahead of its premiere earlier this year. Loid, Anya, and Yor were easily the most popular cosplays at Anime Expo. I fell in love so deeply with the show that the first “cour” wasn’t even over before I crowned Spy x Family the best anime of the 2020s so far. I laugh out loud every episode, which is rare for me. And it’s heartfelt and witty to boot. Anyway, I love Spy x Family, and I’m excited for more.
My Hero Academia: Season 6
My Hero Academia just rolled out a delightful OVA about playing baseball, but, of course, that’s just an appetizer (and filler). The main course is, of course, season 6. MHA is, arguably, the biggest name in modern shonen. It will have been a full year since season 5 wrapped up, and things are getting tense. Notice I’m being vague — I’m catching up on season 5 right now, so shhhhhh.
Mob Psycho 100: Season 3
This is another one I was expecting to premiere in 2023, because it shares its production studio with My Hero Academia. That studio is Bones, and if they deliver beautiful-yet-straightforward animation for MHA, Mob Psycho is their opportunity to go absolutely buckwild, and its a true wonder and delight to behold. MHA‘s slot in the Fall 2022 block had been announced before we even knew Mob Psycho 100 III even existed. But exist it does! Mob Psycho 100 is definitely within my personal Top 10 Anime, if not Top 5, so I could not be more thrilled to see Reigen Arataka and his Salt Splash grace my screen once more.
One Piece: Wano Kuni Climax
It’s been a big, big, BIG year for us One Piece fans. And the One Piece anime is absolutely part of that roll: I will forever contend that Episode 1015, which corresponds to the manga’s 1000th chapter, is one of the best anime episodes of all time. By the end of the year, the One Piece anime will be over 1050 episodes. That will bring us towards the end of Wano, so I’m pretty sure The Thing will happen by then. With Luffy. If you know, you know. I’m still catching up on the manga, but even so, it’s hard to avoid That Spoiler if you’re on One Piece Twitter. I’m excited as all hell to see it animated.
Bleach: The Thousand-Year Blood War
This is a big ol’ deal. Unlike One Piece, its companion in the “Big Three” of shonen, the Bleach anime hasn’t been in production since it was cancelled in 2012. The manga ended in 2016, so those only watching the Bleach anime haven’t known the end of the story — until now. Because a full decade later, the anime is returning with the story’s final arc. This is all epic as hell. You also love to see both One Piece and Bleach getting major animation-quality upgrades.
Pop Team Epic: Season Two
If you have not watched Pop Team Epic, stop reading this and go to either Crunchyroll or Netflix right now. Pop Team Epic is based on a four-panel gag comic strip. The anime is kinda-sorta like a Japanese Robot Chicken (there are references to the likes of Your Name. and Akira), but way better and way more absurd. If someone asked me to boil my entire vibe and sense of humor into one show, I’d probably pick Pop Team Epic.
Take, for example, the segment above, which is one of my favorites. Each episode has two versions: one voiced by a female cast, and one voiced by a male cast. For this segment, they only gave them a few lines, and then had the actors ad lib the rest as the animation continued. Marilyn Monroe, man.
There are also incredibly saccharine music segments. Because Pop Team Epic is wonderful like that. (The song below, my favorite, doesn’t have the English subtitles available on YouTube. Please know the chorus translates to, “I will kill you / You are my sunshine.”)
What are you most excited for in the anime realm when fall 2022 arrives?
(Featured mage credit: MAPPA)
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