Oh look, is it time already?
Hello everyone, and welcome back to a new edition of my annual anime review. I know I abandoned my blog half a year ago and moved to facebook instead, but nevertheless, I'll continue my tradition of writing an anime retrospective view at the end of each year like I did in , and .
I have rather mixed feelings about the anime series in 2013. There were many series, whih had great potential in the beginning, but ended up into a disappointment. (MAOYUU MAOU YUUSHA, VIVIDRED OPERATION, RED DATA GIRL just to name a few). We only had a hand full of anime series, which were really great from start to finish. Most series will probably be completely forgotten by the next year.
But! 2013 gave us one particular anime series, which has generated a hype in the anime community, I have never seen before. A hype which has surpassed titanic proportions.
Alright, without wasting too much time, let's get straight to business! Here are my personal
TOP 10 ANIME SERIES OF THE YEAR 2013!
#10:YAHARI ORE NO SEISHUN / HATARAKU MAOU SAMA
These two are prefectly on par in terms of entertainment value and I still can't decide which one I liked better. Both aired in spring 2013, both were one cour (13- episodes) and both were fun, memorable series with a great cast of characters. HACHIMAN in YAHARI deserves a special mention because he was very refreshing MC in a Highschool RomCom. His cynical world view and sarcastic personality was brilliantly executed. (same reason why I like Kyon in Haruhi)
Also, Saika is the best girl- I mean trap - of the year.
#9:RAILGUN S2 (WITHOUT THE FILLER SECOND HALF)
Yes, without the filler in all caps. Because the entire sisters arc was UTTERLY AMAZING from start to finish and probably the pinnacle of the entire Railgun/Index universe so far. The TouMAN-punch against Accelerator was the single most awesome moment in Railgun S2. And then, after the sisters arc, JC Staff suddenly decided to shit on us viewers and gave us a super boring "original story" aka filler episodes. *sighs* JC staff, why don't you even try anymore
Oh well, at least we got to see Frenda in a super sexy swimsuit in the filler.
Kyousougiga is in every aspect unique: experimental animation, extensive soundtrack, ghibli-like atmosphere, and it tells us a heart-warming story about an eccentric family and it's adventurous life. Unfortunately it loses it's "magic" after episode 6. They rushed expositions, the story developed into nowhere and they didn't focus enough on the other characters and didn't utilize enough proper world building . It could have been much better if the storyline has been better polished. But nonetheless, it's still one of the most aesthetic series I've seen for a long time. Also, Kyousougiga has
I'd totally watch a spin-off of Shouko and the men in white
#7:SUISEI NO GARGANTIA
After watching the first episode, I immediately thought "this is going to be the best anime of the year". The idea of "civilisation clash" was very interesting to watch, the makers put in a lot of details to make the setting credible (like the language barrier, or Ledo getting more and more tanned with each episode). Adding an astonishing oceanic scenery and exotic character designs, this show was a feast for the eyes. It loses a bit of steam in the middle part, because the story didn't progressed at all, but the last few episodes picked it up again, and the finale was really great. Overall, a really enjoyable series and I'm really happy it's
Am I the only one, who didn't mind the belly dancing?
#6:KILL LA KILL
Kill la Kill marks the official TV anime debut of Studio Trigger, aka former GAINAX, and is probably the most hyped anime series aside from Attack on Titan. And did it live up to the hype? After watching episode 1 for the first time, I can only say one thing:
Studio trigger didn't LOSE THEIR WAAAYYYYYY~ *guitar riff*
This show is just full of batshit insane action scenes combined with animators on crack and adrenaline pumping music. But one of the most important factors, why I like this show so much is its simplicity: It's not trying to be too deep or anything like that. It's justFUN, simply by making a mundane setting (girls fighting girls in super powered uniforms), AWESOME. Not everyone can deal with the borderline ecchi fanservice shots though, but I loved every second of it.
So, is Anime SAVED? It's still too early to tell which direction this anime will be going but I like what I have seen so far and I am confident, that Studio Trigger will surprise us again in the second half of Kill la Kill.
Forget what I said above, Anime is definitely SAVED!
This was one of the surprise hits of the summer season and probably one of the smartest anime series of this year. The entire anime is basically a metaphor for the dangers and benefit of the social network in the future. Imagine a group of post-modern Power Rangers are rescuing the world from a huge alien troll, who just want to watch the world burn. It also has one of the smartest main Heroine and most cunning villain I've seen for a long time in an anime series. Add a bit social network elements, a color palette like having an acid trip, and an fantastic soundtrack, you'll get a unique series like none other, called Gatchaman Crowds. This is definitely one of the highlights of this year.
Biiiiird - GO!
#4:AKB0048 NEXT STAGE
Probably one of my most anticipated continuations, AKB0048 NEXT STAGE has thankfullytied almost all lose ends from the first season and delivered another spectacular ride, full of emotions, space fights, manly tears, new insert songs and awesome moments. And the best of all: they didn't even screw up the final episode! In fact, episode 13 of AKB0048 NEXT STAGE was one of the most grandiose finale I've ever seen. I will surely miss all the characters, and after watchinig NEXT STAGE, AKB0048 has officially ascended into my "immortal" top 5 favorite anime series of all time. I just love this series so much.
I want to protect that smile.
And now, we have reached my top three anime series of the year 2013, which deserves a special mention, because they have made a huge impact on me. They made me tremble because of the excitement, they made me feel relaxed, and they made me cry like bitch.
#3:SHINGEKI NO KYOJIN
This anime took the entire anime community by storm and created a global hype I've never seen before. Thousands of cosplays, fanarts and fanfics were made, new memes were born, everything associated with Shingeki no Kyojin was instantly awesome, and merchandise of Shingeki no Kyojin were always a bestseller in anime conventions. The question is, why is this anime so succesfull and became that popular? Is it the fact, that the "enemies" are not ninjas, nor vampires, nor mechas this time, but 20 meter tall humanoid behemoths? Or is the fact, that the 3D maneuver gear is the most awesome anime invention since the introduction of pokeballs? Or is it simply the incredibly atmospheric animation and bombastic Soundtrack by Sawano? Maybe all of them combined. Either way, I, for once, join the hype and have to tip off my hat to the makers of Attack on Titan for delivering one of the most spectacular actions series of year 2013. It does have some pacing issues, yes, and it ended with a cliffhanger (which is a bit frustrating) but it would be lying if I didn't enjoyed the TENSION in every episode. I really hope there is a second season announcement in 2014.
Also, the first opening "Guren no Yumiya", triggered an internet sensation on youtube and thousands of parody videos has been made of the opening song. I also have never seen something like this happen before.
(I still like Jiyuu no Tsubasa more though.)
Looks like Hanji can also master the "gendo" pose
#2:NON NON BIYORI
The polar opposite of Attack on Titan, Non Non Biyori is slice of life in its purest form andis one of the most relaxing anime series of year 2013. The very first thing I do, after I arrive home after a tiring day of practising the piano is watching the newest episode of Non Non Biyori. After watching the episode, my bad mood is instantly gone and I was "healed". Every time, when I was watching it, I couldn't help but smile the entire time, and whenever a heart-warming scene happened, I left out a quiet "d'awwww~". Sometimes, the time passed so fast while watching Non non Biyori, I didn't even realize when the episode is already over. Every time when I hear ending song, I just had to-
-I'm sorry, this reads like a diary now. Anyway, Non non Biyori is a genuinely good Slice-of-life series with a country setting featuring a loveable quartet of girls.
one of the most heartwarming moments in non non Biyori
#1:LITTLE BUSTERS! ~REFRAIN~
My personal number 1 may surprise some people, but Little Busters Refrain just totallydeserved to be my favorite anime of this year.
It was a step up from the first Season of Little Busters in almost every aspect. The animation got better, the five main Little Busters Characters finally got character development
"The Little busterswill never die"
Now, after getting this out, here are my other favorites in different categories. Let's start with the
TOP THREE ANIME SOUNDTRACKS OF THIS YEAR
#3:SHINGEKI NO KYOJIN OST
Hiroyuki Sawano strikes again after his Guilty Crown OST. Many memorable tracks like "The reluctant Heroes" or "Vogel in K fig" has made into my anime playlist, and many other tracks have a really "bombastic" feeling, perfect for a action-packed series like Shingeki no Kyojin.
I never heard about the composer Go Shiina, before, but after listening to the Kyousougiga Soundtrack, I immediately want to hear more from him. The soundtrack has a fantastic instrumentation (the japanese Flute Shakuhachi for example) and some of the tracks sounds straight from a Disney movie.Also, notice how he brilliantly quoted the main motiv (c-f-e-f-g) in the other tracks of the OST.
#1:GATCHAMAN CROWDS OST
My personal favorite Soundtrack of this year. Ranging from Dubstep-heavy electronic beats to melodic warm strings, this soundtrack has it all and shows once again, what Iwasaki Taku is capable of: mixing many different musical genres and still blending together perfectly. Especially the track "Ziel der hydra" with the unique mix of Soprano and Dubstep was utterly brilliant.
TOP THREE MOVIES / OVA'S OF THIS YEAR
Alright, this movie left a big question mark around all evangelion fans of the world. Retconned almost everything and explained next to nothing, plus adding a 14 year timeskip out of nowhere, this movie is basically Anno Hideaki's idea to troll the Evangelion fandom again. Oh well, at least the animation and the soundtrack were really great, especially the ED theme, , which is one of my favorite ending themes of this year.
I hope they don't need another 2 years to deliver the next (and final) movie
#2LITTLE WITCH ACADEMIA
This small OVA was a smash hit among all the OVA that got released this year. Take a Harry Potter setting, replace the MC with a cute girl, and crank it up to eleven with awesome animations and soundtrack. Little Witch Academia is only 25 minutes long, but many people (including me) liked it so much, they cried for more. And Studio Trigger actually listened!, and it exceeded its goal by 417%! This is why we CAN have nice things.
#1OOKAMI KODOMO NO AME TO YUKI
One of my favorite movies this year is definitely "The Wolf Children Ame and Yuki".
Absolutely heartwarming story about a single mother raising up two children who were part part human. Despite all the troubles she has to deal with in her tough life, she still carried on, raised the two troublesome children and always did her best to survive on her own in the lone countryside. Truly inspirational. One of the few anime movies I shed a single tear of joy in the final scene. Go and watch this fantastic movie if you still haven't!
Hana is the best mom ever.
TOP THREE FAVORITE CHARACTERS OF THE YEAR
and that's how you solve a Rubik's Cube~ssu!
TOP THREE POTENTIALLY GREAT ANIME SERIES I'VE MISSED THIS YEAR DUE TO TIME CONSTRAINTS
This basically means, that these series are added to my backlog and I'll watch it if I have found some time. These are BAKEMONOGATARI S2, CHIHAYAFURU S2 and SILVER SPOON.
Alright, my anime summary for 2013 is almost over, but wait, I got more! For the first time in my annual anime summary, I will give 7 anime series, which was memorable in its own way, a special award. The first special award is-
THE "COCKTEASE" AWARD for having the most misleading first 10 minutes of the entire anime series
Anyone still remember the 180mood shift in the first 10 minutes of episode 1? I still feel like I have been totally trolled. I expected Kotoura-san to be a grimdark, cynical series, but then it developed into a bland highschool rom-com. Meh.
Kotoura's mom is a real monster though.
THE "SUNRISE"-AWARD for having the most stupid case of "character-revival"
KYOUKAI NO KANATA
I don't want to spoil too much, but seriously, I hate "last-minute" asspulls in final episodes. Why are you always pulling this crappy plot-device, japan. You're toying with our feelings, man.
This is the only good episode in the entire goddamn series.
THE "FUJOSHI-BAIT" AWARD for having the most blatant manservice
I still can't believe I actually watched the whole thing, despite being in the wrong audience target, but hey, at least the manservice was spectaculary animated. Also, Gou-chan is waifu of the year.
So many ***** around meI want to **** them all~
THE "TRAINWRECK" AWARD for having the most "wtf-am-i-watching" moments:
KAKUMEIKI NO VALVRAVE (S1 + S2)
Valvrave is a show with immortal body-hijacking vampire highschool students piloting overpowered demoniac self-stabbing mechs instructed by an unexplanably white-haired young psycopath prophet rambo genius revolucionary against goddammed space nazists where the good boy can randomly rape the bad girl and then marry her after abandoning his childhood soulmate that became the prime minister with jinglebells.
Seriously, Sunrise has outdone themselves once again in terms of sheer craziness and stupidity, but damn, it was really entertaining to watch. Still, I am still quite sad, that certain characters have passed away in Valvrave
Also, DAT rape scene
THE "FAIL" AWARD for having the most disappointing closure of this year:
INFINITE STRATOS S2
So why the hell are we still watching this harem lunacy? "Oh hey, let's introduce two new characters we couldn't care less and let's introduce some stupid forced drama plot!" Seriously, Infinite stratos should stay away from SUPER SERIOUS PLOT, because we are watching Infinite Stratos for the delicious fanservice and potential waifu-battles and not for the story.
Harem series + serious plot = fucking stupid.
Also, too much time were wasted on Houki and we still didn't get a charlotte end. Why.
I can fap to this.
THE "SHITSTORM" AWARD for creating the biggest controversy of this year:
AKU NO HANA
Alright, nobody really expected THAT abonimation. Soon after the first episode of Aku no Hana has been aired, it was immediately universally loathed and mocked in the entire anime community, because these atrocious rotoscoping animation are truly a chore to watch. Still, I kept watching this series and I slowly get more and more interested with the inner conflict of the MC. After a while I got used to the rotoscoping animation. In the end it turned out to be a really intense psychological drama series.
The classroom scene was absolutely amazing btw.
THE "FAGGOT"-AWARD for being the most annoying Harem Protagonist of this year:
KODAKA from BOKU WA TOMODACHI GA SUKUNAI
Even ICHIKA from INFINITE STRATOS is a better Harem protagonist than this useless piece of shit. I want to self insert myself as a little girl in the series and kick KODAKA in the balls, because he is fucking stupid. The end.
Jesus fucking christ, Kodaka.
AND NOW, AFTER THE SEVEN SPECIAL AWARDS, IT'S FINALLY TIME FOR THE MAIN EVENT.
IT'S TIME TO ANNOUNCE THE "WORST ANIME OF THIS YEAR".
AND IT GOES TOOOOOOOOO-
ORE NO IMOUTO S2!
fucking kyousuke finally got what he deserved
Alright, what do we got here:
-Kyousuke rejected Kuroneko, and therefore ruined the chance of having a perfect normal life with a poorfag-girlfriend, who is geniunely in love with him.
-Kyousuke rejected Ayase, and therefore ruined the chance of having a perfect normal life with a model-girlfriend, who, albeit detested him initially, now has deep feelings for him
- Kyousuke rejects Kanako, which was kinda random, because why the fuck would Kanako suddenly confess to Kyousuke, but oh well, it's anime after all, so yeah, Kyousuke ruined the chance of having a perfect normal life with an idol-girlfriend.
- Kyousuke rejected Manami, and therefore- wait, Manami is a shit.
- Kyousuke finally admitted his true love is Kirino and decided to take the incest route (wait, WHAT)
- I still couldn't believe what I saw, but since Kyousuke is actually dead serious about his decision, I just promptly told my reason to fuck off and prepared my body for the "full incest menu". I mean, why the hell not, they are at least happy and-
- "jk, we were only pretending, lololol"$%/RT/ &WTRWGRZF)T/WRGWEFGTRW(/IR( (/% &$"$
FUCK THIS SHIT I'M OUTTA HERE.
(And Manami still a shit.)And that's it, everyone! That was my anime summary for this year!
This turned out a bit longer than initially planned, but nonetheless, I had my share of fun writing my anime summary for 2013!
Happy New Year and let's see what exciting anime series 2014 will deliv-
Sword Art Online II announced to air in 2014Animenz