Now let’s talk about anime I REALLY liked!
All you need is M-E-G-A-N-E! This is my first exposure to director Soubi Yamamoto, and boy oh boy am I glad to have discovered this new female director! Meganebu is unadulterated silliness, very much like the comedy parts of Revolutionary Utena, there is only madness ahead of you. Meganebu delivered what it promised: colorful, colorful zaniness and glasses. Soubi Yamamoto is a talent to look out for, she makes the most of a limited budget and an absurd premise to give us an undeniably entertaining show about silly highschool boys who just happen to be too passionate about eyewear.
Perhaps the most underrated series of the year, Hakkenden went under most people’s radars. I dropped it upon seeing the first three episodes, but changed my mind after the rest of the Winter season failed to hold my interest. I still think picking up Hakkenden was one of the best anime viewing decisions I’ve made all year. Hakkenden is a gorgeous, gorgeous show but beyond that, it’s also a very fascinating look into the relationships shared between human and youkai in this story’s universe. Ever bittersweet, Hakkenden was consistently satisfying and…I may have cried a few times.
Always controversial, Valvrave was a series that knew how to punish and reward its viewers. It’s never an ‘easy’ watch, but it always made sure to hook you just to see how far it pushed the envelope. The first half almost plays like a satirical take on the mecha genre, but the second half turns into a real drama. For some bizarre reason, I stopped laughing and felt connected to these characters. Of course, I won’t deny that L-Elf still is the best thing about the show.
07. Silver Spoon
Silver Spoon is about a city boy who attends a agricultural highschool in rural Japan. Silver Spoon presents the facts and it’s hard to sit through it from time to time, because it’s such an eye opener. It’s amazing how something that delves into such dreary territory can garner such hearty laughs. I suppose that’s what you get for honesty. The world can be cruel, but it’s also filled with good things and Silver Spoon captures that perfectly. Never forget porkbowl!
06. Majestic Prince
Majestic Prince is undoubtedly the best mecha anime of 2013. It starts off goofy but ended up being a truly dripping space drama. The mecha fights were a sight to behold as well. There’s so much in this series to love, but I think one thing it does well is balance drama, comedy and action well. The series develops its characters well and provides a sufficient amount of background for their characters. Because of this, whenever we see them in peril, the stakes become much higher. The result is a series that constantly puts you on the edge of your seat.
05. Uta no Prince-sama
ALL IS RIGHT WITH THE WORLD, COMMENCE THE HAPPY PULSE PROJECT. I realize this is an inside joke, but if you want to be cool and figure out said inside joke, WATCH UTAPRI! It’s a series that never fails to make me smile from its campiness. I think I’ve developed this fondness for shows like UtaPri and Meganebu as a coping mechanism from all the cynicism surrounding anime blogging. We all need to take a break from our snotty, pompous wannabe inner critics and embrace happy pulse. I think this will make us better humans.
04. Zetsuen no Tempest
Zetsuen no Tempest is a truly strange beast. It’s impossible to sum it up in one sentence. It’s a daring attack on conventional storytelling where its characters seem to struggle against logic and fate. It’s an excellent series that shatters so many preconceptions as to where the story is heading. Zetsuen no Tempest is filled with twists and turns that never feel contrived and has characters you’ll be rooting for from beginning to end.
03. Attack on Titan
Attack on Titan reminds me of why the 12 year old me thought anime was so freaking cool. Man, Attack on Titan is so COOL AND EDGY. GOD. That’s really all you need to know. I’d go on about how this is significantly linked with Japanese history blah blah blah but really, who gives a fuck when this is a show about giant naked cannibals?
02. Gatchaman Crowds
What makes a hero? Gatchaman Crowds dares to challenge the Superhero myth in ways I didn’t expect while also portraying the ever growing influence of social media in our lives. Just like Zetsuen no Tempest, it’s a strange beast and a series not everyone will find enjoyable but I did. Kenji Nakamura has yet to fail me as every anime series he has made has comfortably made it into my yearly Top 10 lists.
01. Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure
I don’t know about you but I think Jojo is perfect. Every week was pure bliss. I don’t want to describe what happens in the show, because you wouldn’t believe me anyway but really, was there any contest? At first I wondered if the magic rubbed off but then the season 3 preview came out and NOPE, my love for Jojo is here to stay. I have to hand it to David Production, with this. WRRRRYYYYYYY.
And so there it is, my Top 10 of 2013. Now comment to tell me this is a shit list!