Imagine my raising a fist and shaking it at the cruelty of the heavens, and you'll have my reaction to the latest news to come out of Saimoe, the yearly contest that rocks the moe world as anime heroines battle it out in that most pointless (and yet most important) of popularity polls.
Why do I rail against such injustices? It's simple, really. I blame Saki. The moe moe mahjong anime has done what no other series has ever managed, and taken six of the top eight spots following the end of group matchups today. Six!!! What a juggernaut! The video above is an artist's reenactment of the impact Saki had this year.
Saki Miyanaga, Nodoka Haramura, Kuro and Yuu Matsumi, Hisa Takei and Toki Onjouji steamrolled the rest of the competition, with only the longtime veterans Shana and Louise (of Shakugan no Shana and Familiar of Zero respectively) to combine their Rie Kugimiya tsundere strength and hold off the unstoppable horde of superpowered tile-tossers.
Well, it was only a matter of time until the considerable power of the Saki voting bloc took a year for themselves. Strength in numbers, and all that. Literally dozens of characters running the full spectrum of appeals would doubtless capture a wide audience. And, having watched a bit of Girls und Panzer, I have an idea of why people watch this sort of preposterous stuff.
Add to that the energy of new seasons for all three shows (Shana Final, Familiar of Zero F, and Saki Side A), and such a conclusion was practically guaranteed. No newcomer could bear the weight of all those incumbents.
For the anti-Saki crowd, perhaps all they can hope for is for sectarian conflict to erupt among the fans of the top six mahjong-ers, leaving openings for Shana or Louise to squeeze into the final four, and inch closer to the championships they've been denied for six and four years, respectively.
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