Yeah, we were spoiled as fuck in Winter and Spring with the latter being better than the former by a significant margin. I feel like I need to rank and highlight a few for those that didn't watch them because if you haven't watched any of these, you have really missed out. Any one of these shows could be AOTY and that including that we had Jujutsu Kaisen, Attack on Titan and Re: Zero
(1) Zombieland Saga Revenge - The key to a legendary masterpiece level anime is staying power and Zombieland Saga Revenge has it in spades. I hardly ever rewatch shows and I almost never rewatch entire episodes on a standalone basis, but that basically doesn't apply to Zombieland Saga Revenge. Shows like Zombieland Sage are usually flash in the pan, one-shots that always fall short on their second season as the writers struggle to recapture the magic and ingenuity of the first season. Mappa deserves an enormous amount of credit because they did not just deliver, but elevated the show from Season 1 to Season 2. Everything from the music to the writing to the animation quality was incredible. The foreshadowing and level of attention to detail is so rewarding on rewatch.
What makes Zombieland Sage great is the level of detail it takes in telling its story and conveying the writer's love for its subject matter to the audience. You can tell from watching it that the writers want to recreate their love for idol culture in the viewers and pass on the same joy that it gave to them. Out of all the shows I watched this season, this is the only one that I went back and rewatched multiple times and by far gave me the most enjoyment while watching. This really deserves to be anime of the year, but it won't be because of its subject matter and that is truly a shame.
(2) Fruits Basket - The Final - Look any time a remake catapults a series to the #1 spot on MAL, you have to take notice. As this was my first watch-through of Fruits Basket, I have to say it ended on an absolute tear with its final 5 episodes being the payoff that everyone wanted and then some. As a whole, the series is relatively mundane and sickeningly sweet, and overdramatic at several points. It honestly strains suspension of disbelief to that end with how insanely overdramatic it can be, but the final few episodes of this season give the payoff that you stuck with the series for through 50+ episodes.
(3) Oddtaxi - Oddtax has a lot of the same things going for it as Zombieland Saga. It's a fun watch on its own, but the level of attention to detail the writers put into is just absurd. It is reminiscent of Durrara with its ability to generate interest in multiple different storylines and keep the viewer intrigued before the final payoff where all of these storylines coalasce and come together. Foreshadowing is heavily present in every episode and there truly is no wasted scenes or dialogue as everything ends up becoming important by the end of the season. Overall, the series feels "complete" and leaves the viewer wanting for nothing/
(4) Vivy Flourite Eyes Song - This is probably one of the most well-executed shows I have seen in a long time and that is really the best way I have to describe it. Vivy does not have the highs or the staying power of Zombieland Saga Revenge or Fruits Basket - The Final. Likewise, it does not have the atmosphere, nuance, or attention to detail of Oddtaxi. However, Vivy is an incredibly efficient story. Nothing feels overused or out of place and the message conveyed is clear and present in each episode
On to something more depressing, what I will be watching the Summer 2021 Edition
Carryovers (aka What will be saving this season of Anime for me)
(1) To Your Eternity - This took way too long to get going, but I think the setup will be worth it and we are in store for a wild finish.
(2) Tokyo Revengers - Yes, it's a shittier version of Erased, but that's what passes for quality in the Summer of 2021.
(3) My Villain Hero Academia - Heard the arc after this one is supposed to be hype and the manga has been on fire recently. Can it redeem the past two seasons?
Most Anticipated aka AOTS Contenders
(1) That Time I Was Reincarnated Into A Slime Season 2 Part 2 - Easy pick for AOTS in a weak season. Just has to not drop the ball
(2) Higurashi - Down for the sickness.
(3) The Detective is Already Dead - Very surprised and pleased by Epsode 1. Really hope this is the show that saves this season.
Things that Interest Me With Their Potential But I Am Not Holding Out Much Hope For
Trash That Confirms My Lack Of A Soul
(4) The Honor Student At Magic HS - Now that the incestuous imouto has been confirmed, I am 100% committed. This is my trash pick for the season. It's only a matter of time before this goes the hentai route.