The Top Anime of 2014

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!


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Zankyou no Terror, Episode 11 (End)

I’ll be working on a full review (or maybe more of a reflection) of the show for later on, but I need to get my Haruhi reflection out of my head so I don’t end up just saying the same things all over again. But anyways, let’s talk about this explosive (sorry) finale to what I think I probably consider the finest show of the season. And Zankyou no Terror was a fine show—a thoughtful and sensitive show, realistic without being handcuffed by reality, a bit cynical without being hopeless.

Zankyou no Terror

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Zankyou no Terror, Episode 10

Well, this is pretty much the definition of putting all your eggs in one basket. If Zankyou no Terror can put out a fantastic episode next week, the show will have sold me. If next week ends up in the dumps, the whole show will suffer the repercussions. To be honest, I’m torn about this—endings are always critically important to me, but this almost seems to be a case where the ending is going to be disproportionately important to the other 10 episodes that came before.

I kind of wish things weren’t this way. But they are. Anyways, the episode.

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Summer 2014, Week 11: Highlights of the Week

It’s almost over, thank goodness. Oh, wait. End of the season means more work for me, because then it’s reviewing time. Here’s a quick look at the shows I’ll probably be doing reviews for. If something not on this list piques my interest or makes me angry in the next couple of weeks, you might find them added in, but for now, this is what I’m expecting to do:

  • Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun review
  • Hunter x Hunter tribute post
  • Zankyou no Terror review (+ episodics archive)
  • Aldnoah.Zero review (depending on how annoyed I am after the last episode/how bad I want blog views)
  • Haikyuu!! (not sure, because Nozaki-kun ends on the same day)

Brace yourselves! The end of the season is coming!

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Summer 2014, Week 10: Highlights of the Week

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 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.

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Zankyou no Terror, Episode 8

Hey, look who’s back today! It’s Zankyou no Terror! In case you need a bit of a refresher of what happened last episode (I did), here’s my write-up from two weeks ago. By way of summary: Nine and Five played chess in the airport, Lisa got trapped with the bomb, Nine and Twelve get her out in time while Shibasaki helps them from the control tower, the airplane blows up and nobody gets hurt.

So, where does that leave us going into this episode? Well, Sphinx has inevitably been framed by the media as the culprits of the airplane bomb and Shibasaki, et al. are in trouble for acting without orders.

Zankyou no Terror

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Summer 2014, Week 8: Highlights of the Week

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.

Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun

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Zankyou no Terror, Episode 7

I was worried coming into this episode, as the popular opinion on the streets (read: Anitwitter) seemed to be that this episode wasn’t very good.

I disagree. This wasn’t my favorite episode of Zankyou no Terror, but it was more that serviceable. (EDIT: Apparently the ruckus has to do with believability problems with FBI allowing a bombing to take place under their command. Y’all are too grounded in the real world.)

This episode we saw the return of (better) visual storytelling to Zankyou no Terror, as well as giving us a number of parallels and contrasts on which to ponder. There were also a TON of facial expressions this episode, most of them revealing small details in tiny moments that are easy to miss.

Zankyou no Terror

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Zankyou no Terror, Episode 6

In this episode, Lisa uses her moe powers to convince a couple of terrorists to let her in on their super secret plan to defuse a bomb somebody else set up.

Well, not exactly, but Lisa’s first real inclusion to Nine and Twelve’s purposes is a landmark moment for both Lisa and the boys—one that places her in very real danger. I do wonder if she truly understands what she has gotten herself into, but at this point its not about the danger and its not about whether or not she can harm others. It’s about whether or not she belongs.

Zankyou no Terror

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