Now that fall is just about over that it's time to do my quarterly winners and losers blog, and a lot has happened over the past three months, none bigger than the sudden split in the partnership that Crunchyroll and Funimation once had. But there are other big developments as well as HIDIVE replaced Funimation on VRV and Pony Canyon is forming some sort of pact with Sentai after trying and failing hard at home video releases themselves. And while those who don't subscribe to Amazon Prime can finally rejoice a bit, that's not going to factor until next season as there's still no indication if the Animeism deal is still in effect in the US. Alright, enough said and time to do this season's winners and losers.

WINNER: Sentai
No company had a bigger improvement in their outlook than Sentai as they had been cutting back substantially ever since their partnership with Amazon ended. But this season, a golden opportunity opened up for them with Crunchyroll and Funimation cutting ties as that allowed them to join VRV and gain even more exposure, as well as utilize Crunchyroll again now that they are no longer aligned with Funimation. This season, they have Bloom Into You, Tsurune, Release the Spyce, and the continuing Mr. Tonegawa that are getting dubcasts, and they also have Between the Sky and Sea, Run with the Wind, Gakuen Basara, and The Girl in Twilight. This is more of their normal seasonal load as now they are able to license as many shows as they once did with Amazon's help. Pretty much, Crunchyroll's partnership with Sentai is more beneficial to them than their partnership with Funimation for Funimation as they are now owned at the top by a megacoropration in Sony. Not so much with Sentai as they are one of the few distributors left without any megacorporation ownership, and partnering up with a company owned by AT&T at the top ought to help things out if they play their cards right.

WINNER: Pony Canyon USA
Pony Canyon has been the butt of jokes when it comes to how not to be an anime distributor in America. They followed the Aniplex approach, but they failed to realize that their titles are nowhere near being the heavy hitters that Aniplex titles are. Not to mention, they are releasing stuff that are not shelf-friendly. And lately, they have left a lot of their titles on the table not ever seeing the light of day in America beyond streams. But that's all changing this season as Pony Canyon finally realized what a huge mistake that was as they are wisely handing off those duties to Sentai. This season's Pony Canyon titles are The Girl in Twilight, Tsurune, Release the Spyce, and Hinomaru Sumo. Things are in good hands with Sentai or Funimation handling distribution duties, and that makes them a winner for a change. The classic addition by subtraction argument is why they are coming out ahead.

WINNER: Hulu
Hulu made a partnership with Funimation to make them relevant once again. What this means is that viewers essentially have the option of subscribing to either Funimation Now or Hulu for their shows, a small consolation to their break-up with Crunchyroll. But above all, Hulu has become relevant again seeing that things haven't been all well and good there with Viz licensing fewer shows and Sentai opting to put everything on HIDIVE instead of going to Hulu. In any case, Hulu will now become a viable place to subscribe to as a substitute for Funimation Now, although it's not all-inclusive as there will be stuff exclusive to Funimation Now.

LOSER: Crunchyroll
Things have been going well for Crunchyroll with their partnership with Funimation. But this season, it all came to an end as Sony initiated the breakup with their long-standing partnership with Funimation. As such, they have lost a lot of their catalog, all while their offerings moving forward aren't going to be as big as it was once before, pending some sort of partnership with Sentai that is apparently happening. And one other thing that made them losers was their partnership with NBC Universal as that didn't land them two of their shows in Boarding School Juliet and Iroduku: The World in Colors. While NBCU is part of the production committee for both of those shows, they are both part of Animeism, and that means the deal MBS has with Amazon supercedes that of Crunchyroll's partnership with NBCU.

LOSER: Funimation
Funimation opted to break things up as disputes over international streaming rights was reportedly the deal breaker. In any case, they better have a good plan in mind because that was not exactly what anime fans wanted them to be doing, but with Sony now owning this company that everything is up to them, and they saw that they were too big for Crunchyroll, or at least that's how I saw things. It remains to be seen what will happen going forward, and at the very least they made a good move with the Hulu partnership to increase their exposure, but most of the anime fandom uses Crunchyroll.

LOSER: Netflix
While Netflix continues to put out stuff, their season's load is pretty underwhelming. The only things new this season for them are Ingress and Hero Mask, two very underwhelming shows. They got some good stuff that arrived in December, but in terms of this season's simulcasts, it's slim pickings.

WINNER: Mappa
This season, Mappa produced Banana Fish and Zombie Land Saga, and those are two of the season's best shows. Especially with the latter as they did a great job in creating their own story rather than to try and strictly adhere to the manga that's long, and so 80's. The anime modernized it going to show that they are trying to create something that's within the spirit, but not pigeon-holed by constraints seen in most manga adaptations. And then there's the idea of making an idol group out of zombie girls. Very genius idea that was, indeed.

WINNER: Cloverworks
This studio that was once part of A-1 Pictures has done lots of great work this season. Their shows are Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai, Dakaichi, Fairy Tail Final Season, and Ace Attorney season 2, and while not all of them were its, Rascal Does Not Dream and Fairy Tail are among the season's best shows, while Dakaichi is pretty good for a BL, and Ace Attorney, while still a bad show, at least has brand name recognition going in their favor. They finally make their brand known after splitting off from A-1, and they are primed for even more greatness starting with the highly-anticipated Promised Neverland coming this winter.

LOSER: Deen
While Studio Deen has been known for being around a long time and making generations of great shows, this season didn't exactly have much to offer. Their titles are Xuan Yuan Sword Luminary, Bakumatsu, and Gurazeni, three shows that have very limited appeal and not much to offer. This studio has seen better days, but at least they are still putting in the effort unlike with some has-been studios.

LOSER: NAZ
No studio had it more rough than NAZ, which seldom makes shows these days. But what stood out was that the animators there publicly acknowledged their struggles through the credits of My Sister, My Writer. It's one thing for the show to be bad, but it's because of the way it's tanking that makes this as the animation quality for that show took a huge nosedive in the latter episodes. The struggles are very real as these guys have been having a tough time keeping up with their current working conditions. Seeing that they are producing duds that it would be for the best that these guys look for new jobs in other studios seeing that NAZ just doesn't have the resources to make something at least decent, and there's not much of a future for this studio.

WINNER: Sports
This was a great season for sports anime as there was plenty to be found. The heavy hitters are Run With the Wind and Tsurune as they are made by highly reputable studios that do what they have always done well, all while Hinomaru Sumo is one of this season's pleasant surprises, and there are two other sports shows in Anima Yell! and the second season of Gurazeni. In all, this season fed those who are into sports. As if that wasn't enough, season 4 of Haikyuu was greenlit much to everybody's delight since it is one of the best sports anime out there.

LOSER: Shorts
After a great season with several shorts that are at least half-way decent, there really wasn't much short stuff this season. There are three half-length shows in Honda-san, Himote House, and Voice of Fox, and the only other shorts this season are Jingai-san no Yome and [email protected] Side M Mini. Only Honda-san was worth watching as that did an excellent job in portraying the real-life workings of a bookstore with the only major issue being the animation quality. The rest were just terrible to say the least.

WINNER: MBS
MBS finally has a winning lineup after having so many underwhelming ones, as well as the lack of premieres as most of their shows have been delaycasts outside of the shows on Animeism. But this season, things are different as they have their Animeism shows in Boarding School Juliet and Iroduku: The World in Colors, and two more premieres in SSSS.Gridman and Release the Spyce. And among their delaycasts are Sword Art Online: Alicization and A Certain Magical Index III. In all, a pretty good lineup for this station, the #3 carrier in anime behind AT-X and Tokyo MX.

LOSER: TBS
After finally getting better shows for their Animerico block, they regressed back to the mean, and by their standards that's pretty awful. Just when they were starting to turn the corner after a bad 2017, they get saddled with two duds in Gakuen Basara and Bakumatsu, a bland a boring spinoff comedy that takes the characters of the Sengoku Basara franchise, and a forgettable fujoshi show. Better luck next time, TBS.

WINNER: Fridays
The Friday lineup was simply loaded with great shows. To run down the list of shows on this day, there's Ms. Vampire Who Lives in My Neighborhood, Gurazeni, A Certain Magical Index III, Uzamaid!, Hinomaru Sumo, JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Golden Wind, Dakaichi, Senran Kagura: Shinovi Master, Bloom Into You, Boarding School Juliet, and Iroduku: The World in Colors. And among them, Golden Wind is one of the best shows this season, while there are plenty of other good shows in Index, Uzamaid, Bloom Into You, Iroduku, and Hinomaru Sumo. Simply put, Fridays were super-loaded.

WIINNER: Mondays
The Monday lineups have just been dismal over the past two years as nothing came close to being as great as its remarkable Summer 2016 lineup. But that all changed this season with That Time I Got Reincarnated and Golden Kamuy being two of the most-watched shows this season, and for good reason as they are amazing shows. As for the rest of the lineup, they have their shorts, as well as Xuan Yuan Sword Luminary and The Girl in Twilight, which aren't heavy hitters, but they didn't have to be for this day to be among the winners.

LOSER: Tuesdays
By far and away the worst day of the season belonged to Tuesdays. The lineups consists of Tokyo Ghoul:re, Black Clover, Goma-chan, [email protected] Side M Mini, Jingai-san no Yome, Run With the Wind, Mr. Tonegawa: Middle Management Blues, and *cough* Conception. Only Run With the Wind was any good, while everything else was pretty bad. Especially Tokyo Ghoul:re as that show's adaptation a total mess and an absolute travesty to the manga that was so amazing. While it was going to be difficult given what happened with Root A, it was just a disaster, especially in the second half. Then there are the shorts that are about as good as what you expect out of shorts. And then there's Conception, which is by far and away the worst show of the season. At least it was aware that it was going to be bad, so that's about the only silver lining for a show that's wrong in every way imaginable.

LOSER: Sundays
The Sunday lineup was just really bad this season for various reasons, the biggest being that Attack on Titan season 3 went on break and won't be back until April. After a great summer Sunday lineup, this season, not so much. And the other big reason is that no anime showed aired during its Sunday block on TV Tokyo. So to run down the list of Sunday shows this season, Double Decker!, Ulysses, Anima Yell!, Tsurune, Himote House, Honda-san, and Boruto aired this season, not exactly an inspiring lineup. On the bright side, Boruto joined the Sunday lineup after being on Thursdays for the previous seasons.