It was a good season of anime. I realize I’m closing the season on a pretty small selection of shows and that a number of those shows are leftovers from the Fall 2014 season, but even so…this was a good season of anime. I don’t actually know what more to say beyond that. It was good, I really enjoyed it and felt blessed to be watching what I was watching quite a lot, and I’m sad many of these shows are over. And that’s that. Here are the best anime of Winter 2015. Are you ready, Koharu-chan?
[Management: I’ve decided to rename the “Best Animation” category the “Best Visual Aesthetic” category. The idea here is to condense character designs, background art, and general visual appearance into a single category. I’m not really qualified at this point to discuss the actual technical merits of animation, but I can at least tell you what I thought looked good. Additionally, the caption awards have morphed into something a bit different than “the was the best action” show; rather, they’re now more along the lines of “this show had the best romance/action/etc.”]
The Fall 2014 anime season has come to a close, so it’s time to take a look at what was the best, what great, what was good, what was enjoyable, and what was none of those. It’s particularly important in this season to note that these rankings only cover shows that ended this season—if ongoing shows were counted, this list would look radically different.
I’ve also made a few changes to the awards to accommodate the decreasing number of shows I’m watching each season. All the genre awards have been reduced to a winner and an honorable mention, OST has been added as a category, and ongoing shows are eligible for the OP/ED categories. With that in mind, I’m happy to present the top shows of Fall 2014. Well, happy might not be the best word for a season as rough as this, but here’s the list anyways.
And so we bid farewell to what has been the weakest season of anime I have watched since I began following shows weekly. The numbers show it. I finished only seven shows this season, not including my sad farewell to long runner Hunter x Hunter, with four ongoing shows remaining. Thank goodness fall is coming, because it looks a lot more promising to me.
Mikorin basking in the breeze of being the best.
It’s kind of crazy to think that I was still in England when this season started. Where I am now, both as an anime watcher and and blogger, seems quite far away from where I was then. It was a good season, though—one that saw my entry into Reddit, the start up of an ambitious Best Girl tournament on the Crunchyroll forums and my first steps into the aniblogger world. But about that anime…. I picked up a lot more shows than I wanted to actually watch, discovered a new show that I really like (Love Live!), was let down by numerous shows, dropped way more shows than I usually do, was charmed by Chaika and wowed by my first Masaaski Yuasa show. So, yeah. Spring 2014 wasn’t a bad season for me. I won’t say some shows didn’t become tedious at times, but overall it was a pretty good season, with Week 8 (headlined by Hunter x Hunter, of course) standing head and shoulders above all the rest. Here’s how things shook out.
The Winter 2014 season has come to a close, and so it’s time to assess the shows that I watched, rate them and rank them. What follows is are short reviews and rating on a scale of 1-10 of the shows that I watched during the winter 2014 season. Overall, the season was one of the least impressive I’ve seen, although it did has a few shows I genuinely enjoyed.
Here’s the format I’ll be following. I will be going through the list of shows I’ve been watching in ranked order. Each show will be given a rating out of 10, as well as a short review and any awards the show won (Best Animation, Best Comedy, etc.).
Tiered rankings will be found here, and full series reviews for the shows that need them can be found on the Reviewed Anime List, as well as on the front page of the blog as I post them.
Let’s get started!
Due to the ending of the current fall anime season and the resulting influx of new anime into my Ongoing Anime Rankings, as well as a fascinating discussion about the 1-10 ranking scale over on the Crunchyroll forums, it came to my attention that my current ranking system, while good, needed some fine tuning. Below you will see the new system, but first, I want to share some of the philosophy and general standards that have been considered as I put together the new system. Continue reading
Updated rankings can be found here: https://reallifeanime.wordpress.com/ongoing-anime-rankings/
What anime should I watch next? This is a difficult question for anyone who has just finished an anime they really enjoyed, or for anyone who wants to try out anime for the first time. There are many anime reviews drifting around online, but it can be tough to wade through all of them. To help answer this question, I have created a list of anime, ranking them into three tiers. Consider them a list of anime recommendations, if you wish. I plan to eventually elaborate on my rankings, but for now, I hope that my qualifications and rankings will help you cut through the many anime reviews online and address the question: what anime should I watch?
Tier I Qualifications: Great characters, top-notch storytelling, compelling character relations, a potent human element and transcending themes. All of these are uplifting in nature, at least by the end of the story. Furthermore, they all possess the ability to create an emotional reaction in the viewer, while simultaneously providing room for deep though. In short, they are anime that I would recommend to anyone solely on their virtues, although some I might give caution about for certain elements (such as blood, sexuality, etc.). Among the top 4 in the tier, I have no set ranking; they are essentially interchangeable depending on my mood at the time. The fifth is solidly set as the fifth-place show on the list.
T1: Angel Beats! (2010)
T1: Sword Art Online (2012)
T1: Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (2009-2010)
T1: Blast of Tempest (2012-2013)
2: A Certain Scientific Railgun (2009-ongoing)