My Top Anime for 2011

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Happy New Year everyone!

This post is very late because, well, I had a awful start to my Christmas vacation–caught a fever and have been feeling sluggish ever since.  Haven’t done much and the result is delay in the things I wanted to do.  Adding to the delay was my purchase of a new monitor that led to rewatches and viewings galore…

Anyway, I have got to say that 2011’s crop was better as a whole than 2010’s.  The top 5 contenders each have the quality to be considered the best show of the year 2011 for me.  To illustrate the close fight, the five categories that I used to compare the shows (namely Characters/Entertainment Value/Story-Plot-Ending/Music/Animation) were divided among 4 of the top 6 shows.  The 2 shows that didn’t get a first place ranking had 2 second-place rankings each.

My viewing has picked up a bit over 2010’s 14 shows.  Maybe because as I said earlier, the quality of the shows for 2011 was actually better than 2010’s.  Am I watching more because of this?  Hehehe.  For 2011 I’m supposed to be ranking 19 shows, but Fate/Zero, Last Exile – Ginyoku no Fam, and Chihayafuru are still far from finished.  So I have decided to bump these 3 to 2012, saving me a few moments of deliberation with the 2011 ranking.  Hunter x Hunter is also unfinished, and I doubt if I really can complete it.  With these unfinished shows the ranking process would’ve been tougher. 🙂

I have also decided to exclude movies except for Break Blade.  If I did not, well, Sayonara no Tsubasa would have been this list’s best anime–blowing away the competition hahaha…

16 Kimi ni Todoke 2

One of the disappointing shows, I had a hard time finishing this.  It was boring.  I don’t really remember much of what happened in season 2, that’s how forgettable this show was.

15 Dantalian no Shoka

I was hoping something really interesting would happen here.  Unfortunately I think this show wasted its potential.  Just when you thought it would get interesting, the story would veer off to something else.  Still I like the OP.

14 Honto ni Atta! Reibai Sensei

One of the 3 comedy shows in this list.  It’s really funny because of its randomness.  The only minus was in the latter part where I couldn’t ‘get’ the jokes and I think they overused the alien cats.

13 Nyanpire

Speaking of cats, there’s lots of cats in 2011 hehehe.  Nyanpire is the 2nd comedy show in the list and is about a vampire cat that’s soooooooooooo cute!  The only downside is that the ED is so annoying and too long.  Yeah, I really DIDN’T LIKE the ED.

12 No. 6

There are lots of dogs here instead of cats hehehe.  One of the sci-fi shows I was looking forward to.  Unfortunately the ending was more fantasy and took the whole series down a notch.  The only advantage this show had over KNT 2 and Dantalian was that the series was more coherent and interesting up until that magic ending.

11 Sekaiichi Hatsukoi (1 & 2)

Ah, something from the BL world for the first time in the history of the rankings (I think).  Actually I had tried watching Junjou Romantica in the past but I thought the story wasn’t that coherent and decided it was a waste of my time.  Sekaiichi on the other hand centered around editors of a shoujo manga department and as such the stories revolved around the editors there.  It caught my interest even though I was watching this more for laughs and curiousity and not really taking things seriously.  Still there were episodes in Sekaiichi where I didn’t care that much about and were forgettable.  How this series ended up at 11 is also a little surprising.  And it doesn’t mean I’ll be watching more BL shows–this series was an exception.

10 Break Blade

The only mecha show in the list.  I had decided to ignore the Gundam shows as I think I’ve had enough of it.  I have closed my heart to it and decided that Turn A Gundam is the best Gundam series for me.  (Though I would probably check out those that would not be in the UC timeline.)  OK back to Break Blade.  I really like the animation, the story, and the fights here.  And I’ve noticed that most of the big-breasted well-endowed females were not only for show but are competent–be they mecha pilots or the Queen herself.  Not bad at all.  The only downside is that the ending is a little inconclusive with regards to the over-all war.  The battle ended quite satisfactorily for me though.

09 Yondemasu Yo!  Azazel-san

The 3rd comedy show in this list.  With the sex jokes, shit jokes, and violence, you’d think it really disgusting.  But it was damn funny (though not Arakawa funny which is wholesome fun for me).  The only thing I didn’t like were the dick jokes at the end.  It’s like they were trying too hard to be funny.

08 Ano Hi Mita no Namae o Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai

Finally, we’re starting on the heavyweights of 2011. Well, this show about a dead girl and her childhood friends almost got dropped.  Menma (the dead girl) was totally annoying in the first ep, but eventually she got less annoying.  Or the story got more interesting for me as it went on.

07 Natsume Yuujinchou San

Another show with a fat cat!  However for some reason I haven’t been excited about Natsume.  Although there was an episode that was really scary I just wish that he’d be a little more aggressive like his grandmother and not just rely on Nyanko-sensei to get him out of trouble.

06 Moshidora (1st in Story/Plot/Ending)

I really liked Peter Drucker’s Managing Oneself, so I had to watch this show (fortunately there were subs).  Merging high school baseball and business management, this anime had me in tears in the end.  What I regret is having watched all episodes in one day–I think this series needs a rewatch. 😀

05 Mawaru Penguin Drum (1st in Animation)

Nothing compares to Mawaru Penguin Drum in visuals (Madoka Magica is a far second).   So why is this in 5th place only?  Maybe because I was expecting something to top Revolutionary Girl Utena, but perhaps I should not have made such expectations.  The nature of the curse on the major characters really baffled me, and maybe that’s why I couldn’t appreciate the show more.  Along the way I thought about how watching Utena as it aired would have felt–would it feel like Mawaru Penguin Drum? The scary thought is I probably would have dropped Utena.  I still enjoyed watching Mawaru Penguin Drum though.

04 Hanasaku Iroha (1st in Characters)

If there’s any show of 2011 that’s a near guilty pleasure for me, it’s this one.  Three generations of girl power is a rare sight (for me) in an anime.  And despite being set in a hot spring inn, there’s not much of the annoying fanservice that is normally seen in other anime.

03 Hourou Musuko

Cross-dressing is the theme of this show.  Although some people might not find this a good draw, the way it is handled makes the show unique.  With its soothing atmosphere and pacing itreminds me of Aoi Hana.  And I love the background music too.

02 Usagi Drop

Another show with good handling of touchy subjects, mainly in this case, raising a kid that’s not even yours.  However, a word of advice: don’t read the manga or the wikipedia entry.  Just be content to remember Rin as a cute little girl. 😛

01 Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica (1st in Entertainment Value, Music)

What if becoming a magic girl has its hidden consequences?  If Mawaru Penguin Drum is (probably) the number one anime for 2011 in the guessing game activity, second would (probably) be Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica.  (Of course I don’t hard stats to back me up.  My gut just tells me.  Like Gibbs’.)  For once, having (magical) power has its consequences, which is uncommon.  For once, a normally cute stuffed white animal looks creepy.  For once, the personal motivation for fighting bad witches isn’t only about saving people.   In short, Madoka Magica stood out in 2011 for me.

Who wants to be a magical girl?

Okay, the dropped list:

  • Ao no Exorcist – Not bad but not that interesting to me either.
  • Bakuman – I dropped this to read the manga.  Now I haven’t read the manga for months hahaha.
  • Beelzebub – Not that funny for me.
  • Blood-C – I hated the singing, thank God I did not waste more time on this.
  • C The Money of Soul and Possibility Control – It had a nice premise I just got bored along the way.
  • Deadman Wonderland – I wasn’t in the mood for violent shows then, not really keen on revisiting this one now.
  • Fractale – I dunno.  Just slipped from my radar.
  • Freezing – Tits.  Lots.  Do not like.
  • Gosick – Sick with boredom.
  • Guilty Crown – Guilty of wearing the Crown of Not That Really Interesting or Unique.
  • Ikoku Meiro no Croisee – Boring.
  • IS:  Infinite Stratos – Infinite shots of fanservice I don’t like.
  • Kimi to Boku – Boring.
  • Kore wa Zombie desu ka? – The first episode was the only one I enjoyed.
  • Level E – Not that funny.
  • Mirai Nikki – Same with Deadman Wonderland.
  • Nekogami Yao-nantoka – Boring cats, gods, whatever.
  • UN-GO – Interesting but couldn’t really care about the characters.
  • Phi Brain:  Kami no Puzzle – I’m puzzled it did not meet my expectations.
  • Sacred Seven – Not sacred.
  • Shakugan no Shana III (Final) – Finally the last season, but I don’t care anymore.
  • Sofuteni – I’d rather watch real tennis.
  • Steins;Gate – I hated the male lead and most of the female characters were disappointing.
  • Yuruyuri – Not that funny.

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