Well, it has been a year, hasn’t it? 2014, as a whole, was a pretty disappointing year in anime. This has been the first year that I’ve actually watched simulcasted seasons for the entire year, so perhaps there’s some of Sturgeon’s Law in effect, but overall I felt that 2014 was far inferior to 2013 in terms of top level quality, mid-tier depth, and low-tier hilarity. To be completely fair to 2014, I did end up watching a lot of 2013 shows this year, but, by way of comparison, shows like Chihayafuru 2 and Monogatari Series: Second Season only served to further expose the weakness of this year.
But it’s more fun to talk about the good things that happened this year, so that’s what I’m going to do. Unlike last year, I’m not going to do caption awards. I’ve already done that with each season, so if you want to see which shows were notable in certain areas, check out those posts:
Winter 2014 | Spring 2014 | Summer 2014 | Fall 2014
So, without further distraction, I present my top anime of 2014! Here’s the Best Girl of 2014 to kick things off!
So, I was going to try and write up an elegant, thoughtful, thankful, post about Hunter x Hunter ending today, but I just…can’t find the words right now. I’m too overwhelmed or bummed or depressed or whatever other emotions I’m feeling right now. But I had to do something.
So, for everyone like me who is feeling a bit down about Hunter x Hunter‘s end, and about the fact that episode 149 won’t come for years, here’s a short guide to help you identify the feelings you may experience in the wake of this great anime leaving us.
Welcome to Week 10! The end of the season is in sight, and I’m pretty happy about that. This season has pretty much been a total letdown and I’m more than ready to move on. I’m not going to do a season preview because I don’t like those, but if you’re interested in knowing what I’m looking forward to, I did an ask.fm answer on the subject not long ago.
Trending Up: Sailor Moon Crystal, Haikyuu!!
Trending Down: Argevollen, Aldnoah.Zero, Fairy Tail
RWBY showed off some diversity in their art style this week, which looked good.
So, no Zankyou no Terror this week, which was a shame. Sailor Moon Crystal also was absent (but I’m not crying about that). Overall, I wasn’t a huge fan of the week, as there were a couple episodes that actively upset me and a few others that were somewhat disappointing. But, Argevollen (arguably the most consistent show airing this season), Haikyuu!!, and Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun are all standbys and none of them let me down. Thank goodness for that.
Pira used Seismic Toss!
Three quarters of the season are gone, which means I’ve been thinking about ratings and rankings for the season a bit lately—and I’m not sure what I’m going to do with this season. I’m not even sure if anything will score about a 7/10. Don’t get me wrong, I like Zankyou no Terror, but part of me fears what’s ahead for the show. It’s definitely not 9/10 level, which means 8/10 is going to be the high water mark for the season. I suppose that’s reasonable, but it still seems somewhat disappointing. That said, we’ve still got four weeks to go, which is plenty of time for some of the shows I’m watching to distinguish themselves.
We’ve tripped over the halfway point now with all currently airing shows (except RWBY and Sailor Moon Crystal), so here is the basic rundown of how I’m feeling on everything.
Excited to Watch Each Week: Zankyou no Terror, Argevollen, Haikyuu!!, Hunter x Hunter, Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun
Entertained: Aldnoah.Zero, Glasslip, Free! Eternal Summer
Just Watching: RWBY, Fairy Tail, Sailor Moon Crystal
New plan, guys: just become friends with the nasty dragons!
My week in anime this week was yet another confirmation in my belief that the 3-episode rule is complete bunk and that 4 episodes is a much better standard if you want to box yourself in by arbitrary numbers. Argevollen, Glasslip, and Aldnoah.Zero all engaged me at a much deeper level in their fourth episodes this week, moving each of them solidly into “keeper” territory. By the way, 4 episodes is actually not an arbitrary choice. In traditional three-act structure terms, the fourth episode is the start of the second act. I’m not saying its unreasonable to drop a show because you didn’t like the three episodes of set-up, but waiting to see how the show is executed at the beginning of the real substance seems to be a smarter thing to do, at least if you aren’t just looking for reasons to drop shows.
Rinka and I share the same opinion about her show.
This season feels like it’s going by really slowly. There’s only one show (Nozaki-kun) that I really love so far, but there are a few I’m definitely keeping an eye on. We’ll see. It might end up being a really backlog heavy season for me after all.
Summer 2014 anime are rolling in, which means it’s time to decide how right I was about some shows and realize how miserably wrong I was about others. Fortunately, I don’t pollute my blog with those abominable season previews (I recently wrote a post that tackles more generally why you can’t judge a show’s quality without having seen it), so you’ll never know exactly what I was expecting. Instead, you get my generally unfiltered thoughts on the new shows of the season, based on what’s actually aired.
That’s the way I like it, and that’s the way I’m gonna keep it. And anyone who doesn’t like it—you can talk with my new best girl Sakurai.
Not included, but will be watching: Terror in Tokyo, Tokyo ESP.
Spring 2014 is just about over, with quite a number of my shows ending this week. Review season is almost upon us!
Eat things; become overpowered. If only real life worked the same way…