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My Year in Anime – 2013

A rundown of the best of what I’ve read/watched in the past year

This isn’t a complete listing, but just highlights, because that would take too long. I mean, my anime-planet is 21 pages long for 2013.

From the same mangaka that created Welcome To the NHK, one of my favourite manga, This is Tatsuhiko Takimoto’s début work. It was a decent enough manga which didn’t try to be anything it wasn’t. Again the focus was on a social outcast meeting a mysterious girl. It was decent enough that I watched the live action film aswell, but that might have just been my bias towards the artist.

After this manga, this mangaka became my favourite mangaka. His stories are adapted from the ones found on 2Chan and drawn in an evocative, rough manner. I also read some of his other mangas – Molester Man & Onani Master Kurosawa straight afterwards, which were equally great.

sketch
An example of his sketchy art style (molester man)

This was an interesting manga set in a world where assassins could take out revenge on criminals that have harmed them based on a new law. The story follows a man in a Vengance Proxy Enforcer Firm and slowly becomes un-put-down-able.

This manga was licensed when I decided to read it, so I have all 26 books sitting happily in my cupboard smile

This manga is about baking bread and despite how it sounds, it is ridiculously intense. When the tasters judge the breads, the reactions are nothing short of spectacular. Highly recommend this, and I’d lend you the books if I knew you well enough. There’s an anime version also, but I haven’t seen it

ya

Much like the first season, the show was highly entertaining. Although I did get tired of Chitose’s nose-bleeding and would like very much if she wasn’t in the show at all. Toshinou Kyouko is great though. As always.

This anime was entertaining, but not to be taken seriously. I thoroughly enjoyed it, but I doubt a re-watch would be as satisfying. On that note, I tried reading the manga, but was disappointed.

This is a very odd show. We never learn the name of the main character throughout the entire show. She is a mediator with the fairies that have appeared after humanity has declined. They love sweets and are innocent and mischievous. In one episode she is trapped by the fairies in order so she can make sweets for them forever. This description might make you think it’s a hansy-pansy type of girly anime, but it’s not.  Try http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=42u4ytkzAWw for a clip

I might do a blog post on this anime solely by itself at some stage, but it is suffice to say that it is one of the big hitters in anime and is definitely worth watching. Don’t let the initial episodes put you off, some people find them slow, once you get into it though, it really grips you and doesn’t let go. I also watched the first two movie adaptions

This was a cute show and I’d watch it again, “Chuunibyou” syndrome is a disease that causes high levels of imagination and flights of fancy. The protagonist “Dark Flame Master” wants to cast off his made up title forever, whilst new student Rikka wants to fight evil with him.

Zetsubou-sensei is riddled with despair and has no illusions of happiness. He constantly tries to commit suicide and teach his students that life is not worth living. Fuura Kafuka is a beaming ray of sunshine who relentlessly looks on the bright side of life. The show is a witty comedy which brought a smile to my face several times. The other students are equally as lovable and each have their own quirks, from manic stalker to OCD perfectionist. I watched the second series also, but didn’t get to the final one.

One of the first bigger shoujou/josei manga I’ve read, Nana is a easily led girl who follows her heart. She moves to Tokyo to try and show everyone that she can be independent and not have to rely on everyone like a puppy dog. She meets another girl called Nana on the train on the way there, who has left to Tokyo with only the guitar on her back to make a career.  They become friends and the manga follows their lives in Tokyo together. unfortunately, the mangaka was hit with illness and the manga has been stalled on a cliffhanger for the last 5 years.

I missed out on Dragon Ball as a kid, so I decided to read through the manga, because the anime had lots of filler seemingly. Every time you think “they can’t get any stronger”, you’ll be mistaken as their power levels just grow and grow and each fight is as exhilarating as the last.

English titled “Bodacious Miniskirt Space Pirates”, this anime was not entirely what I expected. For a pirate anime, there isn’t a lot of action, and with the mention of miniskirts, you’d imagine lots of fanservice, but there isn’t that much at all. What is there, is a semi interesting show, but it lacks something to keep you attached and continually watching. I did watch the entire series, but I felt like the show had no real impact on me at all.

This manga is great. It’s twisted, dark and makes you cringe at every plot moment because you know something bad is going to happen. The anime got mixed reviews, but the manga is a sure read. The art is pretty great too.

I don’t know why I started this anime. It’s an anime about highschool girls in Panzer tanks. It’s actually quite entertaining though, as long as you don’t take it seriously, at all. It’s one I’d recommend to pass the time, but you’re not missing much without it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3lRp2uvaaiE

This is the one I’ve finished most recently. It’s a generic slow-paced slice-of-life anime, but it does it well and I’ll be watching the subsequent series. It revolves around 3 sisters – Haruka, the innocent mother figure (but does she have a rough past?) – Kana, the mischievous loveably lazy middle sister – and Chiaki, the tsukkomi to Kana’s boke, who is also the youngest and most naive sister.

I thought an anime about nose-hair combat with a title like that would be highly amusing. Turns out, It isn’t. Disregarding plot at crucial moments, several times mid battle, the cast change tack and do random things out of the blue. I would usually feel lenient with the jokes in series like Joshiraku, but none of the jokes translated into english at all, and I can only presume that is because they weren’t well executed in Japanese. So, as tempting as it may seem, avoid this show sad

My most recent favourite show, Chihayafuru is a sports anime where the characters play Karuta and vie to be the best in the world. Karuta is a game that exists solely inside japan, where players have to grab cards based on what a reader reads out. It’s very intense and adding a love triangle too, means that I’m dying for the 3rd season to start

The same mangaka who wrote elfin lied (and you can tell by the art),  Nononono is another sport related item that follows the main character who wants to become a  ski jumping champion. However, female athletes cannot compete at olympic level, so she has to pretend to be male and follow in her fathers footsteps. Many awkward scenes and just escapes make your heart pause in suspense. It’s a very well written piece of work and is sometimes painfully realistic

I’ve excluded several bigger titles I’ve watched because it was taking too long. Guilty Crown, Cage of Eden, Naked Wolves,  Joshiraku, Good Ending, Ichida & Asakura, Plastic Nee-san, Steins;Gate, Liar’s Game are also worth checking out and I would have reviewed them had they come earlier in my trawl through my list.

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Labels: Anime/Manga

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