Top 20 Anime of 2012

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Summer’s MVPs: Humanity has Declined and Natsuyuki Rendezvous

I’ve never seen anything quite like these two.

I guess I have to break my silence a bit even though I’m on hiatus, because I really can’t keep quiet anymore about these two series. I’ve never really seen anything like these two.

Let’s start with Humanity has Declined. It’s fucking Adventure Time except wittier and with more social commentaries. I’m amazed by the cynical and satirical nature of this show. Also half the time it doesn’t fucking make sense and is so random that I’m laughing my head of almost every minute.

The humor in Humanity has Declined is very dark. In episode 1 there was a bread that split itself into half and blood started spurting out of nowhere. DA FUQ? In episode 2, there were roaming headless chickens sending out processed goods made out of god knows what? There are weird fairies that can’t frown even though they are sad and reproduce when someone tells them a joke and had fun. That is so fucking depressing and like, is that how we’re gonna be in the far future when humanity HAS declined? Also our MC’s hair moves on its own. And there were rampaging fujoshis creating some sort of manga renaissance. Yes a printer is totally something humanity has forgotten but there’s still trucks. DA FUQ DA FUQ.

Now let’s go to Natsuyuki Rendezvous.

This show is so DEPRESSING. The set-up of the story is some weird boy trying to pick up an older chick who just happens to be a widow. Her late husband then appears in front of the weird boy, haunting him while the boy is trying to make his move. This could’ve turned into some weird funny sitcom but this show strikes hard. And by that I mean this show really hits all the chords of D-E-P-R-E-S-S-I-N-G.

These three characters just sucks the life out of each other. The widow will obviously be sad forever but the depressant really begins with the boy liking her and telling her that “hey let’s have an affair even though your husband’s dead.” and she beats herself up realizing that she’s fucking old and sad and that her chance of happiness is to take a dip into more depressing, ditch her husband and be with this weird kid.

Don’t get me started with the weird kid who’s only goal is to get into the widow’s pants. What’s so depressing about him is that 1) he has no fucking life and buys plants from the widow almost everyday just so he can depress us by how depressing his useless life is and 2) whenever he’s not trying to be depressing, which is scheming to get into the widow’s pants, his dead husband cockblocks him from the widow. AGAIN THAT’S FUCKING DEPRESSING. He’s already dead. . . how the fuck can he still cockblock.

Last but not the least is the fucking dead husband. HE’S DEAD ALREADY yet he still manages to suck the life out of the characters in this show. He even sucks the life out of himself (oh wait he’s dead) by just being there, realizing how his existence is absolutely useless. All he can do is cockblock some weird kid who’ll probably win in the long run because at least the kid can talk to the widow.

MY GOD THIS SHOW IS DEPRESSING. Again I’ve never seen anything like it. Even Anohana was never this depressing, and that got me into buckets of tears. Not that this show is sad. JUST DEPRESSING.

Okay I managed my rants but seriously if these two keep up pace, Summer Season wouldn’t be so bad. Plus there are other good shows too this season like Moyashimon, Rinne S2, TARI TARI, Kokoro Connect and Sword Art Online. But Humanity has Declined and Natsuyuki are fucking MVPs.

Anime and haircutting

I’m too prim and proper and nice! I need to cut my hair and ruin my life!

I’ve seen quite a lot of this as of late and it’s really interesting how its used in anime (it’s not really limited to anime but whatever).

Our resident Oujo-sama from Sakamichi no Apollon proves her so called “rebelliousness” by cutting her hair. Why? The most probable answer is it symbolizes a sense of freedom but why exactly so?

When you go to a barber shop and cut your hair (especially if it’s really long already), you realize that there’s this tingling sensation in the back of your neck. It feels nice. It feels refreshing. In a sense, cutting your hair relaxes and relieves you. It sorta soothes you and tells you “hey I’ve changed”. Most anime characters that have done this must have felt that way. Let’s enumerate those characters shall we:

1. The bitchy new girl from Mysterious Girlfriend X who just broke up with her boyfriend

2. Senjougahara Hitagi from Nisemonogatari

3. Araragi Karen from Bakemonogatari

4. Emo angst Natsuki from Tsuritama who FINALLY lightened up a bit.

5. Mio from Ano Natsu de Matteru

All 5 of this characters have been keeping something heavy and wanted to have a new start. They wanted their napes to be tickled. They wanted to be slightly turned on after the recent events in their lives.

*Couldn’t think much on what to write this week so I wrote this garbage. hahahaha

Almost TOP 50 material

I have been working on my Top 50 anime recently. I realized just how hard this is, especially when you get to the 40s and 50s. You start to choose which ones to include and which ones to drop. To make it easier for myself, I’ll just make this post about these really great anime that just went short of making my Top 50.

Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu

Hilarious stuff, especially on its first half. You have to be honest with yourselves, you’ve always wanted to see classes fight each other and which ones would come on top. Baka to Test makes use of this hilarious nonsense setting and play it to the max creating laughs that only a few anime ever managed to bring to me. The only reason it didn’t get into my Top 50 is because it dwindled a bit towards the end, but hey even those parts were still hilarious!

Blood +

I have to admit it to myself, Blood + had terrible parts. But the emotional investment I gave to this was more than enough to cover those holes. The series had A LOT of character development (Contrary to that crap Blood-C), something you rarely see with shows that have themes like this.  When it comes to pure fanboying, this is a shoo-in for my Top 50 but the basic aspects really stop me from doing so.

Durarara!!

This is just damn fine amazing writing. The creativity in its execution is really something to behold. The way it shows a segment of the story, then slowly builds the bits and pieces of information turning that certain segment from great to amazing. The only reason this didn’t make it to my Top 50 is because it ended terribly and I really want my second season . . .

Evangelion

I love Evangelion and its unique take in robot piloting. Usually it’s just wish fulfilment but what Eva did which really redefined the mecha genre was to put realistic acting into the whole robot business and see how does it really feel to pilot one. Didn’t make it to the Top 50 because of that craptastic ending (and in no way did the movie help).

Hanasaku Iroha

Iroha had its ups and downs. When Hanasaku Iroha was good, it’s amazing TOP 20 material but when it’s bad, just lol. Mari Okada (script writer) went wild with this whole Inn business, giving us amazing scenes (Tokyo arc, the last few episodes) and rather bland ones (did we really have to use so much episodes on Takako and Enishing). Still the drama in Iroha is top notch and that’s why it almost got in my Top 50.

Kannagi

Yamakan should just stick to comedies. Kannagi’s a gold mine in comedy. Its jokes are well executed and well timed while at the same time develops each and every one of the characters. The only reason it isn’t in my Top 50 is that it hasn’t aged very well, especially with the whole BRS Fractal crap. I really want a second season of this.

Kara no Kyoukai

One of the most visually stunning anime movies I’ve seen. Kara no Kyoukai is dark, gritty and confusing (being Type Moon and all) but it really works well in such a way that I don’t really care that it’s confusing. Sure they just skip timelines here and there but it really does fit when you think about it. Shiki is one badass female and her story is really well developed through the time skip format (very reminiscent to Haruhi).

Kare Kano

If Kimi ni Todoke is the shoujo of 2010 then Kare Kano is the shoujo of 1990’s. Half the time its wish fulfilment with the whole “we’re all smart and popular couple” sort of thing but Kare Kano makes use of this cliché and turns a realistic twist to it. I still clearly remember that episode in which the principal asked the main leads to break up but then Yukino’s dad steps in and tells this awe inspiring speech. “One day in high school is like a month in adulthood” I still get goosebumps when I remember that scene. The only reason it isn’t in my Top 50 is because of those goddamn terrible last few episodes (mostly because of losing budget).

Moshidora

You know why Moshidora almost made it into the Top 50? Moshidora’s a good anime but it’s nothing special especially with only 10 episodes to work with (very restrained development, forced acting). But my god a certain scene in episode 9 just wow’d me. Minami sees the guys playing the finals (they’re about to go to Koshien at this point) and there she realized how much of a bitch she’s been the whole episode (understandable though). She finally opens her mouth and says “ganbatte!” and I must’ve let up a tear watching that scene.

Occult Academy

It’s messy but it did continuously keep up the whole mystery/comedy balance. The first few episodes were hilarious while the last few had some awesome crazy twists (slightly stupid but amazing nonetheless). My only complaint is that the series was so messy especially towards the end, that it almost broke off and cracked.

Ika-Musume

Genuinely light hearted fluff. Ika-Musume is one adorable squid human and that alone almost makes this series Top 50 material.

Tsubasa Tokyo Revelations

I hate the first two seasons with a passion. It did no justice to the manga besides create a rather amazing soundtrack. Tokyo Revelations though, decided to scrap that TV series shit and stick to the manga. Result? So much badassery win!

Usagi Drop

Parenting is hard and the Usagi Drop really emphasized this by showing what Daikichi had to give up and sacrifice just to raise Rin. This in turn showed how many rewards parenting gives and the sweetness it can create. Rin is one helluvan adorable kid.

//whew! I’m almost done with my Top 50 anime (not really) and when I’m finished, expect some tweaks in the site. Also I have a special big announcement coming up (and unfortunately it’s not about going on hiatus).

I’m a Kyoanifag

I just realized this now.

Analyzing my top anime, I just realized that most of the stuff Kyoto Animation did are in there (and quite deep at that). Besides being produced with top notch visuals, Kyoani has the knack of trying to make everything perfect. While it works at times and fails at times, apparently on whatever they do. . . I like it.

Clannad After Story – Best sequel ever. It still holds the record as the anime that made me cry the most. Bringing out emotion on me is hard and only a few shows have ever done that, so to be able to do that and even more, Clannad is just amazing.

Suzumiya Haruhi – The first season was just amazing. A totally refreshing take on execution and storytelling by skipping around the chronological order. The characters get develop in totally unique ways.

Full Metal Panic Fumoffu – I love FMP but I have to say, I enjoyed the comedy first and foremost. Imagine that! They made 12 episodes of just pure comedy between Sosuke and Chidori. Oh god I still get the chuckles remembering this show.

Nichijou – It’s one of the strangest comedies I’ve ever seen. It’s random, it’s absurd and it totally hits the right buttons on making me laugh. It especially has scenes that really bust your guts out (even moreso than Fumoffu) like the Mio wrestling episode.

Lucky Star – You could say Lucky Star made a new wave of comedy. It’s just girls doing cute things yet it’s so fucking entertaining. Nothing happens but at the same time, so much stuff just appears and makes you crack up.

I also liked Kanon, K-ON! and now Hyouka.

With Hyouka, Kyoani just took a leap in Slice of Life. From girls doing cute things, to girls doing nothing, Kyoani now makes people that talk about doing nothing. Hyouka has a lot of drawn out dialogue and exposition and you realize, WHY? Episode 6 is imminent of this. Chitanda got mad and asked Houtaro why she got mad. THAT’S IT. THAT’S THE WHOLE FUCKING EPISODE. And guess what? I loved it. I fucking loved it.

This is embarrassing, I never realized it until now but I really am a Kyoanifag.

Otaking shares thoughts on illegal copying

From ANN

First of all Otaking, fuck you.

Secondly, not everybody actually has it easy when it comes to buying anime products. I live in a place where the only anime merchandise you’ll find are fake ones, so am I considered a rank lower if I didn’t fucking buy Bluray Boxsets worth I don’t even want to know because I would have to go all the way and order and if I did I wouldn’t be able to understand shit since there’s no subs? Is it bad that I’m poor?

So if I apparently don’t buy copies of your wonderful anime then I would be compared to a train groper? Yes I know your from Gainax and I fucking love Gainax, but I wouldn’t even know what Gainax is or what their shows are if I wasn’t that person you’d compare to a train groper. Oh but who cares since you don’t get profit! But then I don’t have money so that must mean I’m just some poor train groper who don’t deserve those Japan cartoons. Poor people who don’t have resources to buy unsubbed $500 Bluray Boxes like me should never even be considered as anime fans!

Oh yeah I’m sorry my region isn’t allowed to watch those streams. I guess my whole country should be compared to train gropers.

No Otaking, fans aren’t limited to Nippon and Americaw. Anime is more popularthan that.

(I do realize that if I was in his position, I’d be furious too that I’m stealing what they make but hey. . . I’m not a fucking train groper.)

Uncurrency Anime – Monster, Moyashimon, Inu X Boku SS

Stupid internet connection made my 9GB Fate/Zero BD edition download for days. . .

Monster

I’m speechless to how good this was. Monster is an anime adaptation based on the manga by the germanophile Naoki Urusawa. Generally all of Urusawa’s works are held in high regard, but it seems that Monster is her best work so I handily downloaded all 74 episodes and see how awesome it actually is.

The murder mystery starts when Dr. Tenma revives a 10 year old patient named Johan. That was a terrible idea because it came to bite him a few years later when he is accused of a series of murder events. Tenma becomes a runaway, exploring Germany and finding Johan to kill him.

Monster is Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood set in Germany. The awesome part of Monster is that different plot points are set and culminated to create grand plots (I really loved the whole Vampire Millionaire arc) and different characters Tenma met would eventually meet each other and make other plot points. It’s like there’s a plot here, then there’s another plot in which you don’t know what the relevance is and then it builds up and you go “OH SHIT THAT’S FUCKING AWESOME”.

The best character is the show is undeniably Johan. Like how the story suggests it, you have no fucking idea what he’s thinking. One moment he kills middle-aged couples then the next moment he’s this tinker bell everyone is mesmerized with. Kinda like Edward Cullen except its fake. There was even a part where he became a TRAP.

Actually Tenma might just be the Traveler on Revenge (or Johan or Nina).

Monster continues the streak of awesome Uncurrency Anime titles.

Execution: 39/40

Engagement: 29/30

Characters: 18/20

Production Values: 8/10

Overall: 94/100

Moyashimon

Oh my god those Microbes are fucking cute!

Moyashimon is about a guy named Tadayasu who enters Farming College to learn more about these cute microbes he always sees. It must feel weird being friends with him, because he randomly talks in the air, going “OH MY GOD YOU’RE SO DISGUSTING” and gives you that “ugh stop being so stupid/gross/echii” anime expression just because there’s dangerous kawaii bacteria in your room that you can’t even see.

Moyashimon is educational . . . though you can’t use this in school. When your teacher asks you “Hey what bacteria is this and what does it do”, then you go draw a blob with two small eyes and a smile and you say “he does kawaii stuff”, your teacher might fucking slap you!

There are good characters in these series and there are heavily bland ones (that blondie who I don’t know what the hell is her use in the plot) but really, the main attraction is the cute bacteria. And it’s funny at times. Plus it’s a college animu, so we have to like it!

No really, Moyashimon is good. Cute, funny, entertaining . . . you can’t go wrong with this one.

Execution: 36/40

Engagement: 26/30

Characters: 17/20

Production Values: 8/10

Overall: 87/100

Inu X Boku SS

It started off rather terribly. One dimensional characters, grand setting only to never be used, plot with no focus (or rather don’t know what to focus with) and awkward dual service . . . The dual service stayed but it did improved quite a bit towards its run.

Ririchiyo’s insecurities started off as an awkward cop out of what a tsundere is but once the series really started tackling that part of herself, Ririchiyo became a bit more of an actual character. I’d say the same thing to the butler, though that’s mostly because of that one episode towards the end which was really good.

In the end I really just misinterpreted its premise. It never really planned to use its grand horror setting, it just wanted to focus on a select few characters and develop them bit by bit. The plot became internal conflicts which is a good thing. The last few episodes were amazing in retrospect to the entire series.

I got a good vibe walking off this series even with the major problem it has so I’m prepared to give it quite a good score.

Execution: 34/40

Engagement: 26/30

Characters: 17/20

Production Values: 8/10

Overall:  85/100