Happiness Charge Precure follows the same pattern as Heartcatch Precure, but is actually looking to be the worse of the two. It substitutes the beautiful hand-drawn scenes in Heartcatch, for instance where they transform or take out their Heart Tacts or fire their Forte waves, for ugly CG scenes ala Arpeggio of Blue Steel. The protagonists don't seem to be nearly as likable or interesting as Tsubomi and Erica were from Heartcatch, either. So it shares all the bad traits of Heartcatch while lacking any of the good traits. Or in other words, this might just be the worst season of Precure ever. Even the worst season of Precure is still watchable, because it relies on a good formula that's hard to get wrong. But watchable is pretty pathetic when we're normally talking about the best anime franchise of all time.
As expected, the season has immediately sunk in the tv ratings compared to the previous, genuinely good Doki Doki Precure series. As far as I recall, Heartcatch Precure didn't do well in the tv ratings either, so it's strange that they decided to try a clone of that earlier failure. If this keeps up, Precure is going to end up being cancelled, which is a real shame, because I don't think they've explored every possible angle of their wonderful magical girl world. Doki Doki Precure, with its concentration on petty selfishness, was a totally unique and wonderful theme no one else in the world had thought of before. If they could just get back to making innovative Precure seasons like that again, maybe the consumer public will forgive them and its popularity will be restored. But Happiness Charge Precure has no theme, as far as I can tell. There's basically nothing interesting about it at all. The plot, the villains, the heroes, the art, the music, nothing stands out. It's a flop as bad as the Homelands set was for Magic: The Gathering.
Meanwhile, Romantica Clock can't really be considered an anime. It's more like a series of short advertisements for the manga. One minute 'episodes' of anime just doesn't cut it. I admit the manga looks awesome, as expected of the great writer who wrote Aishiteruze Baby, but this 'anime' doesn't even attempt to adapt it in a way that watchers can enjoy. It just leaves a lot of teasers and cliffhangers, jumping from place to place in the manga without any intermediary steps or explanation. There's no point even trying to follow this sad excuse for a show.
Which means we still have just eight shows to watch this winter. What a brutally bad winter anime season it's been:
1. Hunter x Hunter
2. One Piece
3. Sakura Trick
4. Mikakunin de Shinkoukei
5. Saki Nationals
6. Happiness Charge Precure
7. Tonari no Seki-kun
8. Wake up, Girls!
At least Touch is now fully out in blu-ray. There's always a silver lining.