It's that time again when I write this blog about who or what had a great season, and who didn't. It usually comes during the last Thursday of the season, but I got sidetracked and ended up forgetting until now. In any case, time for the Summer 2017 edition of Winners and Losers.

WINNER: Amazon
This was quite a big season for the megacorporation as they strengthened their presence in the anime industry in a big way. They got on the map with a record-breaking deal for the Noitamina shows, which is where anime with massive audience appeal go, and now they recently made a deal with another high-profile anime block, Animeism, which is how they got Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul away from Funimation, while Altair also ended up with them. Then they also grabbed almost all of Sentai's catalog for themselves as they did with the spring season, and this time around after a lackluster spring lineup, Sentai's summer lineup is pretty strong with Made in Abyss being one of the best shows of the year, while Princess Principal is another one of the season's best shows. Then throw Welcome to the Ballroom and the continuing Re:Creators show, and Amazon grabbed almost all of the great stuff this season. Adding Touken Ranbu or Hell Girl through Aniplex doesn't hurt, although these are not exclusive to them.

LOSER: Crunchyroll
Crunchyroll was denied the opportunity to stream many of the season's most highly-anticipated shows. With Amazon making an exclusive deal for the Animeism shows that it means three shows with big profiles end up only with Amazon each season (Dive!!, Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul, and Altair: A Record of Battles this season), and Crunchyroll also lost out on Welcome to the Ballroom to Amazon. In addition, Amazon got Made in Abyss, Princess Principal, and Love and Lies exclusively through another deal with Sentai that applies only in America. As if that weren't bad enough, Netflix got Fate/Apocrypha and Kakegurui. In particular, being shut out of Fate/Apocrypha hurts because Aniplex of America has a long-standing business model of wide exposure, and seeing that Aniplex of America had no say in this matter only made things hurt even more. So with the best shows all going to other places that Crunchyroll was left with only the continuing My Hero Academia series, the two-day special in Owarimonogatari, and a bunch of stuff that range from total crap to great stuff that's not quite in elite company. At least fall season is looking much more promising for them as they have Ancient Magus' Bride and Black Clover by being one of the contributors to the production team, while also getting the Food Wars sequel, which was believed to be headed for Anime Strike with Sentai seemingly ditching Crunchyroll altogether to collect big paychecks from Amazon while putting everything else on their own service that adds yet another paywall.

WINNER: Sentai
Sentai had all sorts of problems last season as things were a PR mess, especially for Canadians that didn't get to see the end of some of their shows until a month into the new season. On top of that, episodes were late in delivery, something that didn't happen on Crunchyroll very often, and their catalog was pretty bad. Well, this season Sentai got a much more loaded catalog by getting one of the season's best shows in Made in Abyss while also getting big hits in terms of viewership by getting Love and Lies and Princess Principal to go along with it. Their spring season lacked any standouts, but here they got a lot of great stuff. But above all, it's their launch of HIDIVE that got them in the winner's circle. They launched it back in June as a replacement for the poorly-maintained Anime Network Online, and now they are bringing out everything they own from exclusive simulcasts to dubs and OVAs, which are normally not streamed to encourage purchase of the BD. Then their decision to ditch DVDs is another great move as they had served their purpose and BDs just about everybody who collects has a BD player now. Sentai has done a lot of right things last season, although streaming delays are still common.

LOSER: Aniplex of America
This season just goes to show how much leverage Aniplex has been losing when it comes to licensing stuff on their terms. Not to mention, their lineup wasn't anything to write home about. This season, their licenses are Katsugeki/Touken Ranbu, Hell Girl: Fourth Twilight, and Fate/Apocrypha. Katsugeki is the action version of this megafranchise and while it has better production values than Hanamaru, unfortunately it's one of those shows that's all style and no substances to speak of. Then there is Hell Girl that takes a nosedive in the second half as it is just stuff that is a disservice to the franchise from what I have been hearing. Lastly, there's Fate/Apocrypha and while it currently isn't available to watch anywhere, from what I have been hearing people are disappointed by what they are watching so far. Then there is Re:Creators and Altair that would have been their licenses (at least before the start of the season), but they currently don't have those shows as there's the issue with exposure that is making Aniplex of America hesitant to license. At least Netflix has a huge subscriber base so they had no problems letting Netflix get it, but on the other hand Anime Strike is problematic.

WINNER: Netflix
This season, Netflix had two shows in Fate/Apocrypha and Kakegurui, and while they are far from being the best shows of the season, they have quite a fan following. But this pales in comparison to the amount of anime they have acquired for future seasons such as Children of the Whales and Violet Evergarden. Now, if they would only do simulcasts, then things would be perfect with them as it means they get people to continuously subscribe to their services because with the current setup, the most ideal way to watch is to binge watch everything on a one month subscription, whereas by doing simulcast they can keep people subscribed continuously.

LOSER: Devoted Simulcast Viewers
And because Netflix isn't doing simulcasts, that means devoted simulcast viewers are left with a huge hole in their watchlist. This means facing a difficult decision to either wait or go over to illegal places to watch the stuff that Netflix has control over, which is something that wouldn't be a problem if Netflix did simulcasts. And with Netflix getting more and more aggressive that the problem only gets worse as long as they continue to take this binge-only approach.

WINNER: Mappa
This season, Mappa's shows are Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul, Altair: A Record of Battles, and Kakegurui, and this season is a strong one for them. They have since established themselves as one of the big name studios as they are putting out more and more shows. Virgin Soul continues to be one of the best shows this season, while Kakegurui has a huge fan following despite not being available to watch legally outside Japan until January (and having watched that show myself through the dark side that I can say that it's quite addicting just like gambling). And for Altair, this show takes awhile to set itself up, but the show has been getting better. The manga is well-received, and at this point the anime is still trying to find its footing. But if and when it does, this show will really take off.

LOSER: Studio Deen
Deen had been on a hot streak as of late, but ever since the winter season that saw them putting out four sequels (Konosuba, Rakugo, Super Lovers, and Reikenzan), things haven't been so great. This season they put out Hell Girl: The Fourth Twilight and The Reflection, and both were huge busts in different ways. With Hell Girl, this season was pretty disappointing to say the least as the writing for this season is a step down while the animation quality from what I have been hearing has been subpar. And then there's The Reflection where with big names like Stan Lee and Hiroshi Nagahama on it that I had pretty high expectations for it. But the animation style is terrible as it's more akin to reading a comic book rather than watching an anime. So this season, Deen, a studio that has had highs and lows, definitely hit a low this season.

WINNER: Kinema Citrus
This is a studio that has done some great work out there, but they just don't have the same reputation as the big name studios like Madhouse or Ufotable. They outdid themselves with Made in Abyss as that show is one of the season's best shows. They did such an incredible job with this show, and as such they are huge winners.

LOSER: Project No. 9
Project No. 9 has never been known to be one of the elite studios out there, so expectations are understandably low for their shows. Even so, they put out two huge duds this season in Chronos Ruler and Angel's 3Piece! as both shows suffer from poor writing and bad animation quality. This studio is still among the worst out there as they haven't made anything that's in elite company. These two shows pretty much accentuate that fact.

WINNER: Slice of Life Anime
This was the season where a great slice of life can had, and there were plenty of them. There's Sakura Quest, New Game!!, Tsuredure Children, Welcome to the Ballroom, and Gamers! that are among the highlights of the season while there are a number of other shows out there like Convenience Store Boy Friends, My First Girlfriend is a Gal, Angel's 3Piece!, Love and Lies, and others that while they are not great shows, there are plenty of things to watch from the genre. Pretty much, if you are a fan of that genre, this season has you well-covered and more.

LOSER: Science Fiction Anime
Sci-fi fans were greatly disappointed this season as simply put, there wasn't any this season. At least not pure sci-fi stuff. The shows that are the closest to being sci-fi are Re:Creators, Princess Principal, and My Hero Academia, and neither of these shows are that in a convincing fashion. They only include elements of the genre, but nothing that makes it obviously that they are sci-fi shows.

WINNER: Saturdays
Once again, Saturdays had a lot of great stuff that includes My Hero Academia, Welcome to the Ballroom, and a bunch of other good shows. They had their fair share of duds with The Reflection and Katsugeki/Touken Ranbu being big disappointments, while it had a solid show that nobody is really watching in Hitorijime My Hero. And then there's Re:Creators that continued, and things could have been better, but Netflix had to ruin things by taking Fate/Apocrypha and Kakegurui, and not making them available for simulcasts. So in all, the Saturday lineup was loaded once again with Fox Spirit Matchmaker, Katsugeki/Touken Ranbu, The Reflection, and Hitorijime My Hero started up while My Hero Academia and Re:Creators continued, Fate/Apocrypha and Kakegurui would have been big additions had Netflix done simulcasts like everybody else, and then there are the kids shows, and then the long-running shows in Dragon Ball Super, Detective Conan, and One Piece continuing their broadcasts with no end in sight.

WINNER: Wednesdays
No other day was strong, and while it was clear that Saturday was the cream of the crop while Sunday, Monday, and Thursday got short-changed, between Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, it was hard to decide which day had it best. Fridays had Made in Abyss and Rage of Bahamut, but the rest of the day had so many duds in it. Tuesday was the same situation with New Game! and Tsuredure Children, but the rest of the lineup was pretty forgettable. As for Wendesdays, it had two strong shows in Sakura Quest and Classroom of the Elite, and it also got Saiyuki Reload Blast, which is good for those who are into the franchise, as well as a big dud in My First Girlfriend is a Gal. Plus, they got lots of short stuff and while most of it is about as good as you could reasonably expect (which is usually bad to worse), there were a lot of them to fill up the list. Seeing that Tuesday got the honor last time and Friday is set to get it the next season while the Wednesday lineup took a huge hit this fall, I'll give that day the nod this season.

LOSER: Thursdays
It was a pretty bad season for Thursday shows as it continues to be an increasingly empty day. The Thursday lineup had been great ever since the Winter 2016 season. This season, Thursdays only had three shows in Gamers!, Dive!!, and Convenience Store Boyfriends. There is also Action Heroine Cheer Fruits that airs on Thursdays in Japan that ended up being pushed to Saturdays due to the TBS policy (which didn't affect Convenience Store Boyfriends this season as a different publisher was involved). Normally, it has one or two more shows as Tokyo MX has three time slots for anime on Thursdays, while AT-X has one show premiering on its channel as well. But there was only one premiere on Tokyo MX (Gamers!) while the other two slots are for delaycasts as AT-X aired In Another World With My Smartphone and Saiyuki Reload Blast on Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively, ahead of its Thursday airing on Tokyo MX. It could have been worse had TBS been the one in charge for Convenience Store Boyfriends, which did not end up being the case. While Noitamina usually has highly regarded shows, Dive!! is easily one of the worst shows that has recently been on Noitamina and quite frankly, this is a show that shouldn't been on Noitamina. It used to be such a packed day for shows, but ever since big changes in the Spring 2015 season with Animeism moving to Fridays to avoid direct competition with Noitamina, coming at the same time Noitamina decided to cut back to one show a season in order to create their line of movies that this day has been losing prominence. On top of that, TBS continues to enforce their delaycast policy, while Naruto Shippuden has ended with its sequel Boruto moved to Wednesdays while its replacement (Snack World) is a crappy CG show that's not coming to America. Now things reach a new low this season for Thursday shows with Tokyo MX getting delaycasts. To get an idea of how packed that day was, look back to Winter 2014 when it had two shows from Noitamina and Animeism, as well as two from TBS (one of them being a delaycast when they had a Wednesday block), and two more from Tokyo MX and an AT-X premiere, plus Shippuden and a bunch of shorts. Now it's a mostly empty day.

LOSER: Mondays
Much like with Thursdays, Mondays have had it really bad lately, and it continues with this season as it's far removed from the best Monday lineup ever in the Summer 2016 season. The shows are Angel's 3Piece, Elegant Yokai Apartment Life, Love and Lies, and Restaurant to Another World. At least Love and Lies and Restaurant were enjoyable shows, but neither show left a lasting impact as Love and Lies crashed and burned towards the end, while Restaurant was nothing more than a feel-good show with rotating characters. Angel's 3Piece has some of the most cringeworthy stuff seen this season with its eerie pedo vibe overpowering anything good this show had to offer, while Yokai Apartment didn't to anything to really stand out. This is one of the few seasons without Yowapeda as another season is coming. Anyway, it still is guaranteed to have at least four shows premiering as it has the Anime no Me block (albeit it hasn't been anything worth writing home about since Sweetness and Lightning a year ago), and the 24:00 time slot on Tokyo MX is highly coveted for a premiere, while two shows air on TV Tokyo every Monday. So with the recent trends, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays have been getting the lion's share of the great stuff, while Sundays, Mondays, and Thursdays have been getting screwed over like it was this season.