Prelim One Group Four Results:
1st - 179 votes - Takanashi Rikka @ Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai! 2nd - 176 votes - Watashi @ Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita 3rd - 128 votes - Yusa Emi (Emilia Justina) @ Hataraku Maou-sama! 4th - 125 votes - Minami Kotori @ Love Live! 5th - 115 votes - Yukinoshita Yukino @ OreGaIru 6th - 105 votes - Mushanokouji Iwai @ Dansai Bunri no Crime Edge 7th - 97 votes - Tamura Manami @ Oreimo 8th - 93 votes - Asia Argento @ Highschool DxD 9th - 83 votes - Yousei-san @ Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita 10th - 77 votes - Matsumoto Yoriko @ Yuyushiki 11th - 74 votes - Aikawa Chiho @ Yuyushiki 11th - 74 votes - Takamiya Nasuno @ Teekyuu 13th - 73 votes - Tsukuyomi Komoe @ Index: Endymion no Kiseki 13th - 73 votes - Shiina Minatsu @ Seitokai no Ichizon Lv.2 ================= 15th - 71 votes - Funakubo Hiroko @ Saki: Achiga-hen - Episode of Side-A 16th - 68 votes - Miniwa Tsumiki @ Acchi Kocchi 17th - 66 votes - Amakusa Shino @ Seitokai Yakuindomo 18th - 50 votes - Kamiigusa Misaki @ Sakurasou no Pet na Kanojo 19th - 48 votes - Tamaki Rinko @ Natsuiro Kiseki 20th - 47 votes - Itsumi Erika @ Girls und Panzer 21st - 44 votes - Takayama Kate @ Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai Next 22nd - 42 votes - Yoshikawa Tomoko @ Yuru Yuri♪♪ 23th - 39 votes - Atago Masae @ Saki: Achiga-hen - Episode of Side-A 23th - 39 votes - Kijima Saki @ Hayate no Gotoku! series 25th - 36 votes - Diana @ Kami nomi zo Shiru Sekai: Tenri-hen 26th - 35 votes - Harada Makoto @ Uchuu Senkan Yamato 2199 27th - 34 votes - Komaki Manaka @ To Heart 2: Dungeon Travelers 28th - 32 votes - Shijima Sui @ Hanasaku Iroha: Home Sweet Home 29th - 30 votes - Hina @ Busou Shinki 29th - 30 votes - Ren Kougyoku @ Magi 31st - 28 votes - Arisawa @ Hidamari Sketch x Honeycomb 32nd - 27 votes - Mase Yuuko @ Saki: Achiga-hen - Episode of Side-A 33rd - 25 votes - Niimi Kaoru @ Uchuu Senkan Yamato 2199 34th - 24 votes - Sanzenin Yukariko @ Hayate no Gotoku! series 34th - 24 votes - Maruse Noriko @ Saki: Achiga-hen - Episode of Side-A 36th - 22 votes - Katou Natsumi @ Bakuman. 3 37th - 21 votes - Miura Yumiko @ OreGaIru 37th - 21 votes - Yagyuu Juubee @ Hyakka Ryouran: Samurai Bride 37th - 21 votes - Aoki Yuriko (Aoki Kou) @ Bakuman. 3 40th - 20 votes - Momozono Love (Cure Peach) @ Precure All Stars New Stage 2: Kokoro no Tomodachi ==================
She didn’t win easily, but Rikka surely has taken a positive step towards the enormous task of preventing a Saki/Madoka repeat. It is completely naive to conclude that Rikka > Toki based on prelim numbers (lots of other factors to consider, etc). But it still is something. As expected, it’s now two of two for KyoAni as their two aces managed to get the job done in the post K-On Saimoe environment.
What was unexpected, to an extent, is how Watashi came close to securing her own fairy tale moment. Almost. Despite way back in the disadvantageous summer season last year, Watashi didn’t seem to decline in strength. And she tagged along a fairy too. Ah, the humanity.
- The third to fifth placers were expected given what we have to work with. Emi’s showing bolsters Maousama’s place in the Saimoe scene as one of the “good enough to win a round or two” series at the very least. Same goes for Love Live as Kotori manages to outdo Maki position-wise. Yukino makes it two for SNAFU, but no luck for Yumiko.
- Crime Edge’s Iwai proves herself to be a cut above the most in this group. I thought she’ll barely make it by a hair but what do I really know?
- Manami was also expected to make it despite Oreimo’s tad disappointing showing so far. Par for the course.
- High School DxD was a good bet to do better this year and Asia managing to get in the main event in one try is a good indication of this.
- I was only expecting Yuyushiki to “compete” but they managed to do better than that as their supporting cast (Yoriko and Chiho) notched Main Draw berths. Good omen for their “mains” once they get their respective turns, I guess.
- Smashing stuff from Teekyuu too with Nasuno qualifying. I didn’t really expect her to make splash immediately but the fact that the second season is currently-airing is a huge boost.
- Wrapping up are proven veterans Minatsu and Komoe. Seizon does not have the explosiveness it used to have years ago, but they didn’t seem to lose that much as others did based on how Minatsu did today.
- As for Komoe and the rest of Raildex, I think how Kuroko fares in the next group will give us a better glimpse as to where they are now in the Saimoe hierarchy.
Notable Misses: A Saki character didn’t make it directly(!!!) Nah, FunaQ almost did but she was a 2nd prelim q’er last year so there wasn’t much expectation from her. Shino suffers the same fate as Suzu. There’s only room for a certain Seitokai series in this batch, it seems. Misaki fails to follow-up Nanami’s sterling performance.
GROUP FIVE PREVIEW
This one’s a heater despite the absence of Saki and Madoka mainstays.
- All-time wins co-leader Sanzenin Nagi is joined by Haganai ace Sena in what promises to be an interesting battle. The former on “twilight” of her Saimoe career, while the latter might just be getting started. Haganai looked good with Yozora’s win. Three of them in the same group (Meat, joined by Rika and Maria) might be enough of an edge to propel Meat past Hayate no Gotoku’s own ace.
- Dekomori Sanae looks to throw a wrench in the plans of Hayate and Haganai, but I think she’s firmly entrenched in third to fourth place territory. A better showing will further reinforce Rikka’s grip as one of the anti-repeat forces.
- It gets messier after that. As aforecited, Kuroko will help us gauge how Raildex will fare this year and I’ll giver the benefit of the doubt for now.
- Himawari might have a good shot of getting third or fourth despite disappointing showing from Wakaba. Aoi will be there to help.
- Going with pairs, the tandem of Inuchiyo and Mitsuhide has a decent chance of advancing here. Same with Seizon’s Kurimu-Lilicia combo. Though the latter is a bit of a stretch.
- Midori will be the first relevant character from Tamako to debut so how she’ll be someone to watch.
- Joshiraku’s Kukuru is good bet, same with Minami-ke’s Yoshino. Not so much for Hidamari’s Hiro (though she’ll inevitably get in later). Not sure about Photokano’s Niimi Haruka, but she’s the “MC”, so why not? Stacked group, that’s why.
- Idolmaster’s Hibiki, Dog Days’ Ricotta and Milky Holmes’ Cordelia, Yuyushiki’s Kei are among the other considerations, together with Saki’s Sera because Saki is always Saimoe relevant. Gonna draw the last line for Cure Ace – she might be the Precure ace the franchise is looking for this year (right…).
To conclude, I’m going with a Sena-Nagi-Dekomori finish. There’s a lingering feeling that Nagi will make me pay for doubting her again though.