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Sunday, June 17, 2012

Top Five Anime of 2012 (So Far)

Do you know what kind of blog posts people with limited access to computers write up when pressed to update their blog? This kind! Honestly, it's already June, why aren't more people making posts like this? Probably waiting for the summer season to end, but I've never been known for my patience.

Note: I have limited interests when it comes to new anime. I don't watch sequel series of series I haven't seen yet (like Fate/Zero) and harem/ecchi series for the most part do not interest me. Without further ado, here comes the top five!

5. Recorder to Randoseru Re



What can I say? The first season was loads of fun and so was this. I especially enjoyed how the humor shifted away from Atsushi's height to Atsumi's size, and we saw more of the high school and of their slacker neighbor. Also interesting has been the story arc between Atsushi and Sayo, who first thinks Atsushi is an adult - and then learns the hard way how old he is. Despite that, Sayo can't help but have a crush on this older-looking grade schooler. I can only imagine what direction this season will take that in. Hopefully nothing too Kodomo no Jikan for most people!

Also, the way they've been alternating opening sequences and have had different characters in the OP is lovely. My favorite so far is the one with Atsushi's female classmates in the recording studio.

Read the rest of my top five list after the jump!

 
4. Thermae Romae


I almost forgot this aired this year! For some reason, I had thought this was a late winter 2011 title, but nope, it aired this January and seems to have been as quickly forgotten by bloggers as soon as it stopped airing, whoops! To be fair, it was a three-episode OVA that aired on noitaminA and spawned a lot of mini-specials that seem to not have been subbed it, darn it, so interest quickly wanes with those types of series.

Still, Thermae Romae was an absolute delight to watch. Lucius' wide-eyed astonishment at the various inventions of the future was always fun to watch, and it was a treasure trove of historical tidbits for fans of both Greek and Japanese culture. Plus, few things beat the episode where Lucius has fun at a Japanese festival and gets loaded with goodies from the various stands. And the ending theme is nothing to sneeze at, either. Chatmonchy!

3. Accel World


The next three should literally surprise no one but here we go. Accel World had me interested since the very first episode, and why wouldn't it? A story set in the future where everyone is literally jacked into their computers and the Internet, and there's an underground virtual reality game where people fight to take control of an accelerated dual reality - and it's all based around an insecure fat kid who ends up having the beautiful princess of the school as his devoted girlfriend? Sign me up, I am there. Pair it up with some great animation, a colorful cast of oddballs, and a pair of excellent OP/EDs (Kotoko's ending for the win) and you have a winner.

Sure, at times Haruyuki can be infuriatingly dense and sometimes I wish the plot would hurry the hell up, but it's a hundred times more watchable than Kill Me Baby so there.

2. Poyopoyo


Look at that adorable opening theme! Unless you hate cats, you will love Poyopoyo. It's not even a question at this point. Naturally, the star of the show is Poyo; from his round body to how he loves scratching up Hide and hiding in boxes, there's nothing not totally cute about him. Yes, even when toads sit on him and make him freeze up.

But Poyopoyo also has something else going for it: its vibrant cast of characters. Without the gluttonous hypergirl Moe or the overprotective strongman Shigeru or the animal-phobic neighbor that thinks Poyo is a mystical snake creature, this show would be incredibly flat. And don't forget that infectious theme song! I've had it stuck in my head since, well, the first episode aired. And at less than five minutes per episode, it's not hard to hear that theme song over and over again as you marathon twenty plus episodes in less than an hour.

1. Space Brothers


Space Brothers! It is simply the best anime that has aired so far in 2012 (that I've seen, please don't kill me TYPE-MOON fanatics!). Mutta is my favorite character so far this year - he's a huge genius dorkwad with an amazing afro and some of the goofiest, funniest facial expressions I've ever seen. And his crush on Serika is totally cute.

But more than Mutta, this series has serious heart. It is all about reaching for one's dreams and fulfilling one's long-term hopes. Look at Mutta, for example. After so many years of feeling like he's stuck in a rut, he's finally going after his childhood dream of being an astronaut with his younger brother. It's been a hard struggle, with road bumps like tests and his previous headbutt incident, but Mutta has been doing admirably so far. I swear, if Mutta doesn't make it to the Moon, I will be so devastated. That's how personally invested in his story I've become. Although if Serika made it instead, I wouldn't feel too bad; she's pretty amazing.

Also, I love love love the opening theme to Space Brothers. I've never heard the band Unicorn before, but now I'm sure I'll be checking them out more often. And of course, the opening animation is pretty great. Mutta has rainbows shooting out of his nostrils, nothing else matters, yeah?

Honorary Mention: Queen's Blade: Rebellion

Nope, just pulling you leg. Nothing to see here, folks.


Feel free to post your own personal top 5 of 2012 so far in the comments. And because I can't really do it myself, top 5 manga of 2012 counts too! Note: I mean manga that started in 2012 over in Japan. Double plus points if said manga can be read in English via legit channels.