Despite the Gintama series being my favorite anime, these 13 episodes lacked the soul of the previous 252 episodes. This was really quite a let down set of episodes.
There is very little humor throughout these episodes. There are 3 story sets (Starting on eps 1/5/10) and a single episode (13). Episode 6,7,8 were pretty well done combat and story wise and 13 was very good, but the rest just strayed away from Gintama and didn't capture the anime well. Clearly there were some issues with creativity or otherwise as it is extremely unusual for a run to have such few episodes, furthered by the gap that the next gintama run is 3 years later (2015).
The characters aside from the regular crew in eps 1-4 and 10-12 just don't feel right. The "stories" were just not exciting or matched the rest of its previous episodes.
As it stands, this season has to be rated for what is there, whether it was an attempt at a new direction as it didn't follow the usualy style, it ultimately missed the mark. If it wasn't for the 4 good episodes mentioned, the score would be extremely low which is hard to say being a major Gintama fan.
Consisting of a few comedy episodes, followed by one of the most famous and popular "Serious" Arcs in Gintama and ending with another mid-Serious Arc. With this result, this season holds up as probably one of the best in all of Gintama. Solely due to the faster pacing and the least drawn-out arc in the anime.
"The Courtesan of a Nation" arc is by far the second-best arc in Gintama and has the fastest pacing of all the arcs. Even though the "Shogun Assassination Arc" was the best in terms of content, it had much slower pacing, making this one just get to the point faster. This arc is followed by another hybrid between "comedy and serious". Of course, as expected with Gintama, there is no transition whatsoever between the humor and serious episodes. These just happen in the middle and then end just as suddenly.
Since Gintama practically reaches its peak of storytelling here, there are only 2 more arcs after this arc that still somehow contribute to the plot. The remaining arcs are then unfortunately hardly worth mentioning apart from the resolution to the main antagonists, nothing more is contributed. And even if I say it this way, this story arc is also just above average and nothing more. In Gintama, a lot is carried by too turned up drama and violence. It makes for a nice overall picture, but in terms of content, the storytelling only barely stands out from other shounen.
And again, Gintama maintains its legendary low-level humor and continues to surprise viewers from episode to episode. The creativity and love for the characters continue to be at their peak and I love the humorous bonding of the characters and their confrontations.
Fluctuating between the average and above average for quite a long time. Again, Gintama just barely manages to stand out and showcase its choreography in some fights. Otherwise, it's the same colorful bunch as before. I still find the sound combination during the fights particularly remarkable in Gintama, whereby the weights and violence of the attacks are always adjusted.
Some of the best intros and outros you can find in the anime scene, followed by some of the best osts. Through these, quite a few scenes and characters are pushed into the spotlight. This underscores the storyline splendidly at all times.
I'm not sure, but this is probably the best season of Gintama in my opinion, right next to the "Slip Arc" season, which again represented the true humor potential of Gintama.
And as before, Gintama is not for everyone. Those who can't handle such a long comedy don't have to force themselves.
I am not ashamed to say that Gintama is my most favorite anime ever. It has the biggest and most unpredictable character set starting from masochistic shinobis to warrior with an older woman kink. This anime shows interactions between ALL the characters and that makes the story become more lively. Its also probably the funniest anime ever, although, the first 20 episodes are kind of lukewarm. But later on, this is certain to become the best show you have ever seen. Also this has the best protagonist ever, lazy and sleazy, thats Sakata Gintoki for you. Although this season was little more subdued and humorless than other seasons, but I still loved it.