A mysterious schedule. Let the freaking out begin.

Normally, this is where we would publish our blogging schedule. We’re going to do something different this time.

We won’t be announcing any blogging picks until the second or third week of the season. This is a change which, if it works well, we will continue with going forward.

The reason for the change is simple: There’s no real reason for us to announce our blogging picks so early. It’s what we’ve always done, but without a good reason, that’s a form of madness. And there is a good reason to delay the schedule post for a week or three—to allow us to actually watch all the new series, so we can figure out which shows we actually want to blog, instead of having to guess.

To make this work, we’re going to be introducing everything we can, and doing more episode two (or even three) posts for shows we might not eventually pick up, like Enzo did for Ranpo Kitan. This is something we can do because we have a lot of writers, rather than the single all-star we had during the Omni and Divine eras. While they were usually at or near their coverage limit, we can go wild for a week or two before we settle down to a more manageable schedule. So that’s what we’re going to do.

As a bonus, maybe we won’t get a bunch of people freaking out when we don’t pick up every show we end up blogging right off the bat. Ya bunch of silly worrywarts, you. I can hope, right?

Expect the actual schedule post to appear on the second or third week of the season—so for winter, mid to late January. We may only release it once we’ve made all of our pickups, or we might trickle out a few others after it’s up. Until then, we’ll introduce everything we can, and see how this goes. Expect a flurry of posts as we figure out what’s good this season together.

76 Comments

    1. I think the issue with current LNs is that most books are being written for, and by, a subsection of the Japanese otaku community with very particular fetishes and tastes. A lot of them are newbie writers, eager to become the next Kawahara Reki with a money-making aninovel franchise. Some LNs are also just reprinted webnovels, which can be even cruder and raunchier than commercially published LNs.

      In addition, mainstream LN writers have begun writing works to specifically court these otakus, who tend to be loyal customers of the franchise. Writers have to make a living too, even if it means penning lewd power fantasies for the weirdoes most willing to pay for them.

      zztop
      1. Is that why almost all light novels are ecchi harem magical battles with swords? that actually explains a lot. is that also why so many of them seem poorly written? or is that translation induced awkwardness?

        nyanlol
      2. I never liked the “writers have to make a living too” argument for writing drivel. I’m an author and I want to make a living at it, and that means I might eventually try out genres that aren’t as favored as my beloved fantasy (paranormal romance, perhaps? ufufu~), but I’ll still try to do it well. As Neil Gaiman would say, if you do something for the money and not for the love of it, if you don’t get the money, you have nothing. And you probably won’t get the money either.

        I think the better reason is that many light novel authors are the kind of people who buy the types of light novels they write. They’re fans. They’re not cynical, they’re writing what they like.

        Though on a more wonky level, I despise the writing style of nearly all light novels. I used to think they were just novels with occasional illustrations, but no, they’re pared down versions of real novels, with all the hard stuff taken out so they can be written faster. They’re often pulp in the bad way, not just in storyline and irreverent, shameless fun, but in production too.

        Not to say some of them aren’t good anyway. I just find some people’s prejudice against them to be grounded in some logic, at least.

        I probably shouldn’t go off on implied rants on some of the shows we’ll end up blogging/introing. Hmm.

      3. Though on a more wonky level, I despise the writing style of nearly all light novels. I used to think they were just novels with occasional illustrations, but no, they’re pared down versions of real novels, with all the hard stuff taken out so they can be written faster.

        Wait, I’m not just imagining things? That “Run, Spot, run!” level of sentence structure is a real part of the original text, and not just the work of bad translators with skills a step above Google Translate?

        I’d never really been clear on what the difference between novels and light novels was, and likewise hadn’t really considered anything more detailed than “novels with pictures”, and having a length about half that of a traditional novel. I do get quite annoyed at the jerky, simplistic writing styles I occasionally come across though; I just hadn’t realized that that was explicitly part of what makes a light novel a light novel.

        David
      4. Yeah. I believe—and as I say this, I’m realizing that I haven’t sampled a light novel in a long time, and my memory ain’t that good, so take this with a grain of salt—but light novels make a number of errors that make a novelist like me scream. They abuse adjectives, which are unnecessary descriptive words that weaken a text; they have their protagonists narrate what’s happening rather than showing it (telling instead of showing); and they don’t trust their readers to pick up what they’re putting down, which is why they explain everything. The style leans more on narration and description than action, when action is way more interesting.

        Of course, the flipside is that it’s a much easier way to write. Whereas I force myself to pare down narration whenever I can, to show what’s happening through action and cut out unnecessary adjectives to deliver a tighter text, light novel authors can word vomit through the protagonist and call it a day. Each LN volume is a lot shorter, too—both out of tradition, and because they can be, because they’re not putting as much into the text.

        All this leads to a writing style which I find inferior to a traditional novel. Which isn’t to say an interesting story can’t come of it—using a narrator works in Haruhi when you begin to realize that he’s actually an Unreliable Narrator, which adds intrigue to the story—but a weaker foundation encourages weaker stories.

  1. I’m fine with whatever the staff here decide to do. I’m not that active as a commenter here though, I do try and keep up to date with some shows, but fall behind on others lol. On stuff I do watch + comment on, I notice you always provide decent coverage on the episode.

    Lyfe
  2. Aw, you’re ruining the time-honored tradition of people coming in and being upset because your tentative schedule doesn’t show anyone covering (insert series name here), being told to wait patiently because the schedule is tentative and more thing will be covered than it shows, and then someone else coming in and doing the same thing five minutes later. πŸ˜‰

    Wanderer
    1. I know you’re joking, but in all seriousness, breaking that time-honored tradition would make me disproportionately happy. It’s one of those things that always annoyed us out of proportion with any detriment it did to the site. Like people complaining about downvotes, if that goes away forever, I’ll be SO pleased. So pleased ;_;

      1. You’ve got my support. For all that I joke, I can understand how that must have bugged you. I would try to help out with explaining the whole situation to people sometimes, but since it isn’t actually my resposnsibility I never actually had to. If I got tired of it I could just ignore it all and no one would expect anything of me. You all had it much worse, as people would eactually expect you to be able to politely explain it to each and every person who came in in a panic because they’d looked at the schedule, seen that their favorite show wasn’t listed as being covered, and jumped straight to commenting without reading the rest of the post.

        I hope this works out well. It sounds like a good idea on paper, anyway.

        Wanderer
  3. The one downside to this is the flaming occurring due to how this blog site will no longer blog an episode A DAY OR SO AFTER it first airs. By the time 3 weeks role by, people would have already talked about the episode already and they’d use up all the hype, so I fear a major drop in activity from this.

    starss
    1. I think you’re misreading. All that changes here is that we get a huge increase in first impressions and “three week rule” posts. Shows will still have their latest episodes blogged within 48 hours, however every seasonal show will now be covered for the first three episodes. After that the writers will decide what to continue covering and we return to the standard RC schedule.

      Pancakes
    2. I don’t think that’s what they mean. FOlks will still be blogging things as they always do. Perhaps more so. They simply won’t be officially designating which series they’re going to cover until a few weeks in. Meaning, for example, Stilts could watch two episodes of a series this season, and blog each one as it airs, like always. After those two episodes he could decide that he wants to cover that series, so when the schedule is posted that series will be placed under his name. Or he could decide he doesn’t want to cover that series, and he won’t feel obligated to keep writing about a series he isn’t enjoying just because he said he’d cover it, like what happened with Comet Lucifer this past season.

      Simply speaking, there should be just as many episode-by-episode posts as there always are, and probably even a few more first-impression posts than usual, as everyone tries out a few extra series to get a feel for what they want to cover. The only thing that’s being delayed a few weeks is the posting of the “who is covering what series” schedule itself.

      Wanderer
    3. I think you’re misunderstanding what we’re trying to do.

      We’re pretty much going to cover everything we can (or at least do intros for most shows) for the next few weeks, especially the shows that we think we might end up covering. When that’s all said and done and we’ve made sure of the series we do end up blogging 2-3 weeks from now, then we’ll make a final schedule.

      The point is we get more flexibility in regards to giving a show we think is promising 2-3 episodes rather than just doing the intro and then tossing it for what we locked ourselves into blogging via the schedule we used to release at the beginning of a season.

      If anything, we’ll end up covering more than the usual, not less, and nothing changes regarding our aim to get posts out within the usual time period we do.

      Zephyr
    4. What they said. Posts will still come out quickly (24-48 hours of subs) for any shows we’re covering or thinking of covering. We just won’t tell you which ones we’re covering until later.

      Only thing to clarify: Pancakes mentioned that we would cover every seasonal show for the first 2-3 weeks. That probably won’t happen. We’ll probably introduce about as many shows as we usually have been lately, or perhaps a few more. But oftentimes it only takes one episode to mark a show off from blogging contention. We’re just delaying the schedule post, and more episodes two and three will probably get posts.

      It’s not a big change. Very minor, in fact. But we thought you all should know so people aren’t asking where the schedule is. (Not that that won’t happen anyway, but heeeey)

    1. What, us discussing what we all wanted to cover on a podcast? Interesting idea, though I’m not sure how fun it’d be. Mostly we’re pretty civil about it. Though I’m sure I could tweak it into some kind of reality show format, if I wanted to sacrifice another shard of my soul.

  4. What you have decided to do makes sense.

    Also, is there anyone left from the super-original cast who still writes in RandomC? Or has this site been handed over completely to the newest generation of writers?

    paulrenzo
    1. Depends on who you consider “super-original” cast.
      I think the longest-still-writing writer would be Takaii and he’s like going on 5 years?
      Stilts and Enzo have been writing for a while too.
      Divine is the owner of the site and he’s still around but mainly doing admin work.

      1. I start in on my fifth year in two days! Enzocchi is already on his fifth, and Takkun is actually on his sixth. So super-original (as in Omni) we ain’t, but we got a little tenure.

        Oh, and Zani, Cherr, and Zephy are only a couple months after me. We’re tenacious bastards :3

      2. By “super original cast”, I meant the first people to write here (i.e. Omni and Divine, based on comments from other people).

        I can’t believe I’ve been following this blog for (maybe) nearly a decade.

        paulrenzo
      1. Speaking Omni i wonder how he is doing now
        is him still lurking in RandomC disguised as ones of anonymous guests watches over us or has completely retired from online world and focus to real life?

        Rocca
      2. You know you’re old when you’ve started reading this blog back when Omni and Divine were still writing. I remember coming across this blog because people were in animesuki were linking screencaps of Gundam SeeD Destiny from here.

        paulrenzo
    2. Whats up with the “Hardcore fans”? πŸ™‚ Do we get a bit of an party as well? πŸ™‚ i know this randomc.net since Omni had put it online.. well, since the Claymore manga i think…. dunno. i just remember that i found him on animesuki forums at through there i found this here.. its long long ago, in a far far away Galaxie…..

      WorldwideDepp
    1. You know what’s funny? We decided to do this almost immediately after the last season schedule was decided on, before any shows had actually started airing. Divine mentioned that there was no reason we had to do it like he used to, to which we replied, with gobsmacked incredulity, that he was exactly right, and that we felt dumb for not having thought of that.

      Comet Lucifer is just a good object lesson in why it’s a good idea.

      1. Nooooo! Your reviews on Comet Lucifer have been one of the hidden gems of this season! With such a logical and sound system, us readers will never enjoy such a funny dissection again XD

        Mistic
      2. Ahaha, there is that downside. Though to be fair, if the first 2-3 episodes are good and then it goes down hill precipitously, you might still get one : ) Or just a more brief version when we do an END post on something that hell fails. A world of options remains!

  5. For some reason I was half-expecting people to freal out that RandomC is being shut down due to no one blogging anything when I first read this. Not sure what that says about me.
    I’m quite happy my expectations weren’t met though.

    More seriously, this is a smart change to make. As said before by others, we wouldn’t want to repeat the Comet Lucifer incident. Even if the posts about it were fun to read.

    Erimaki
  6. Even if it doesn’t show your personal selections, is there any chance putting up a schedule with just the air times for shows before the season hits? I’ve always found them a particularly useful way of remembering the air dates during the initial few weeks

    fathomlessblue
      1. Fair enough. I have a issues with how slow the preview guide takes to load on my various media outlets due to the amount of material contained within it, but maybe that’s just specific to me. The separate calendar link has always been useful during those initial weeks (and beyond) when I need to check them numerous times per day to keep track on the currently airing show. They’ve actually been permanent fixtures in the favourite bars of my browsers so I have quick and easy access to them. I suppose I can always save a screenshot of the preview guide example and use the image until you post the reviewer version, but it’ll be a shame to say goodbye to a nice little tradition of mine.

        fathomlessblue
  7. This was a good decision actually. There are lots of anime titles that became hidden gems later… Sore ga seiyuu a good example. Indeed it was boring at first.. Perhaps even the pv is a bit boring. But the rich plot about the “secret world” of seiyuu has made it very interesting and making its audience crave for more “knowledge”. I remember stilts even agreed with me on this anime, that it was actually pretty good. Sore ga seiyuu was supposed to be not getting blogged as per announcement in the episode one impressions, but it became to interesting to ignore so look, it was blogged till the end.

    In short, no one wants to miss a good anime, a potential hidden gem just because episode 1 or the trailer/pv is uneventful or boring. So waiting for everything to air, and judge the anime after episode 3 or once every title are already aired is really a good decision and that will prevent folks like me (heheh) say “why you not blog (title here) it was damn good” lol.

    Seeing the winter line up, there are lot of seemingly boring titles but I am feeling that a number of those boring titles are actually good… And I cant damn wait to find what anime is that.

    Jeffers
    1. Man, I was actually hyped about Sore ga Seiyuu going in. (Let’s ignore how I haven’t finished it for the moment. My watching habits are weird. I have multiple shows on my immediate watch list that I’m DYING to see, and yet I don’t. My self-control (and self-deprivation) is off the charts.) Though admittedly, that’s mostly because it’s a doujin (self-published) work, and I’m a self-published author. A manga without a publisher getting an anime is NUTS, so I wanted to support that. Luckily I wasn’t the only one.

      And thanks πŸ˜€

  8. Rather than avoiding another Comet Lucifer (I actually enjoyed reading them even though I’m not even watching it), I hope this new system will prevent things like Shirobako not getting covered since lack of early hype. I still remember that, RC :<

    That said, I hope you guys have fun with Winter. To avoid another Asterisk first post, I would also remind ppl to not blog things that you know won't even like from the very beginning πŸ™‚

    zeroyuki92
  9. I completely agree, the 3 episode rule is really important, so many animes are originals or adaptation of more obscure works nowadays, it make sense to be a little more prudent before blogging them.

    Dio
  10. I wonder if this trial period is because Stilts chose Comet Lucifer and ended up hating it so now you can watch a few episodes before making a decision.

    If this makes things easier for you guys than that’s good. If you cover something I watch I’ll read it if not, well there’s always the podcasts and rare occasions when other stuff is posted.

    Gouka Ryuu
  11. funny how I can’t decide what to watch this season…
    indeed getting too busy with Kantai Collection as the new event will start this February, Oh well.
    But I have eyes a few shows already… so it’s a matter of time if it’s worth it.

  12. Oh man I don’t check in on my favorite bloggers during the holidays and you guys go and shake things up a bit! LOL! But seriously that actually does make waaaaay more sense. Good for you guys, now you can make better decisions(for your sanity) and you get time to actually watch everything you want to. I like it!( Not that anyone needed my approval πŸ™‚ )

    Jani
  13. Can we still get the calendar listing, as if you were showing the actual scheduling? Always thought it was pretty helpful in seeing what comes out on what day from a calendar standpoint.

    frubam
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