I hope you all enjoyed the guest writer’s top anime, but it’s back to me and it’s time for my top favorite just THINGS this year in anime as usual. Sorry ahead of time if my AOTY post isn’t done by the end of 2017 – I got a bad head-cold that has also turned into a really terrible sore throat plus I was busier than I expected to be with holiday stuff and also more tired from it. I’ve made a point in the past to get it done before the year is up – one time even getting it out at exactly 11:50pm on the 31st I believe, but this time it might not happen.
The order this is in makes absolutely no sense for those same reasons.
Blood Blockade Battlefront & Beyond
This is one of those openings I’ll for sure still be listening to and randomly watching even years from now, it’s fantastic both in the video and music and it does a great job getting you in the right mindset for the insanity that the show itself is – and that’s kinda hard to do given just how crazy everything about the setting is. People are retarded so 90% of the uploads are horrifically fucked with version to get around Youtube auto-flagging it and/or “LISTEN TO MY HORRIBLE COVER OR DUBSTEP NIGHTCORE REMIX”, so be careful if you look for it – for that reason too I’m just gonna link the not-even-the-full-song (why?) official music video upload.
Runners-up: Girls Last Tour, Twin Angels Break, Black Clover
Best SPECIAL OP
Animegataris Episode 10 OP
Slap the cutest face in the show on literally everyone and remake the entire opening with her in all the scenes instead of anyone else and you’ve got something special for sure. After having a fanservice intro to every episode before the traditional OP, Yui finally gets to shine as the ONLY person in the OP after mysteriously being missing in the intro sequence (then you realize why). It was completely out of nowhere and just so fun and cute and silly, on top of an already fun Yogurting-sounding opening song, plus it really put the debate on the director’s feelings to bed because there’s not much room for arguing anymore.
Yuki Yuna wa Yusha de Aru – Washio Sumi no Shou
Imagine the incredible music from NieR being used in an anime, wouldn’t that be amazing? Well you don’t have to because it exists – Yuki Yuna’s OST is by the same composer and singer who did the original NieR OST which is immediately recognizable (even to retards who played Automata, as it rehashes the entire soundtrack from the original game!).
They did it for the first season as well but it wasn’t nearly as blatant or as emotionally powerful as this time around and even in the sequel portion of the new Yuki Yuna it just isn’t as good as it was in this prequel side. Everything from the background tracks to the vocal insert songs is outstanding and as powerful as the scenes they play over making them even more intense and emotional – and this prequel absolutely has plenty of those powerful scenes to do so with. Without this music the show would still be great, but fuck if it didn’t raise it to an even higher bar.
Runners-up: Just Because, My Hero Academia 2
Best Insert Song
While Yuki Yuna’s Washio arc has a completely amazing soundtrack – including insert songs – almost all of it is kind of just it’s soundtrack, I wouldn’t really call any of the songs insert songs due to the nature of half the OST being that type of music. Anyway, this song from Just Because is what got me into the show through one of the very best scenes in anime this year in the very first episode. It’s a beautiful yet emotional and upbeat song played by the school’s band for their baseball team at games, yet that’s kind of just a bit of background information for it while the show uses it in a much more personal way for the characters. I don’t know if In Unison is the real title but it’s what it says on the fucking music that the band has on the cover so whatever. It’s the trumpet song. If I put a best use of music category this show, mostly due to this song, would probably win.
Runner-up: The song during the climax in the finale of Blood Blockade Battlefront
She’s an alien, alien’s aren’t human, so aliens are critters. And Ucchan is absolutely the cutest critter and cutest alien.
Runner-up: Rokumon like the last, what, 2 years? Poor little cat will never get his day. The dog from Hozuki no Reitetsu.
Ena Komiya / Camera
I called her camera because I’m terrible at names especially when I’m following 20+ anime a season, so camera is her name.
Time and time again in the later episodes she proves herself to be a really fucking sweet loving girl to a fault – as she refuses to be as aggressive as she should be at times and even helps the guy she likes with his love interest somewhat. Compared to the rest of the cast she’s the least cucked though as even her support of him for the other girl isn’t free and comes in the form of her using it to spend time with him, get his attention, and eventually get him to grow feelings for her. It’d be manipulative if she wasn’t so open about it with him which just goes into that sweet and honest aspect of her. But if she’s able to make those feelings strong enough by the end, well, you have to watch and see – I will say they exist, but that’s the most I’ll say. Regardless, throughout the show out of the entire cast, even the pair that is basically a couple, she is the absolute sweetest one and goes the furthest in making those important to her happy. It’s really rare that a romance-drama makes someone, who first appears to be almost an irrelevant-to-the-actual-romance-aspect side character become a massive integral part in it and even the most romantic minded of them all.
Runners-up: Tchaiko, Kukuri, Akane Mizuno,Mamiya Sakura
Actually, when writing this post I was under a lot of stress and huge amounts of physical pain, I just wanted it done and this was the last show I watched at the time so she was on my mind. The true winner is GIN from the YUKI YUNA prequel.
Best Totally An Old Man And Not Tchaiko Just So I could Let Her Win Something At All I’d Never Do That
This totally random old man who is absolutely not Tchaiko.
It’s a funny show about a dumb girl who is always screaming or eating bananas while screaming and a dog named Dog that she rides around town sometimes.
Runner-up: Himouto 2
Magical Circle Guruguru
I’m putting this right after comedy because it’s pretty fucking much a comedy, but it’s so much more than just a parody of old JRPGs that I’d feel I was doing it wrong by treating it as just a joke show. It’s got loads of it’s own creativity mixed into it constantly and while it never stops poking fun at the genre and pretty much every trope within it it maintains a really fun adventerous feeling, keeps you hooked and wanting to see more new towns and meet more new characters, and of course see what happens to the two very lovable main characters.
Animegataris from the get go is just a weird thing – it’s somehow one of the first anime that’s just about discussing anime cliches, the creation process, and various fan things like the retarded 3-episode-rule and such. It doesn’t go into the unrealistic with few exceptions and tends to actually be accurate and informative unlike other shows working sort of in the same-ish genre aside maybe Genshiken or something. That isn’t what makes it the most absurd, of course, you can’t hand that title out to just anything when I believe just last year it was given to an anime about Scandinavian Gods fighting alongside Santa Claus with a nailbat against Saints.
I don’t want to pull a retarded “it GOES PLACES” like people do, which also spoils that there is a twist – but to explain why it’s here that’s kind of necessary…yet really hard not due to avoiding spoilers but due to the fact it’s just complete nonsense that’s hard to write out. The show takes a MASSIVE turn into complete fucking insane calamity in the last few episodes and features probably the very best 4th wall breaking I’ve ever seen because it’s not even 4th wall breaking, it’s some fucking crazy meta shit that makes absolutely no sense and took the entire show to pay off but is so fucking fun and off the wall. It also features a LOT of things I’m amazed were never done for comedy in things like Gintama, yet somehow this figured out some untapped humor and executed it very well.
Runners-up: Classicaloid 2, Love Rice, Onyankopon (I didn’t really include it as it’s a short)
Most Unexpectedly Fun
Frame Arms Girl
I don’t really have much to say about it, but I went into this with absolutely no positive expectations, figuring it to be shilling hardcore and probably some awful kancolle type shit or something with transforming girls. I don’t know, and I don’t know why I watched it. I did though and it turned out to be a really fun almost pre-serious-stuff Angelic Layer except with an actual living robot toy instead of one that only comes alive in the battle ring mixed with Snow Fairy Sugar. Instead of shilling the products or being an action series, it’s just a really fun little slice of life about these robo-girls and their human living together and doing stuff. It’s cute and yeah, it’s just a fun little thing.
Runner-up: Schoolgirl Strikers
Most Expectedly Fun
Time Bokan 24 The Villains Strike Back
Time Bokan 24 last year was one of the biggest surprises for me in a long time – I had no idea what it was and it ended up getting some of the biggest laughs out of me anything has in a while. Really enjoyable, fucking hilarious, and incredibly creative. I needed more, and I got more, but this time we get to have the Akudarma trio lead us around these stories – though this time it’s actually the opposite (which makes no sense thematically, given Akudarma wants to prove the history books right so they can avoid re-printing new ones) as now the show gives us the real histories and real trivia along the way. It’s much more interesting and informative now, but I have to admit I do miss the really silly shit the writers came up with for “real” history. Still, having Bimajo around the entire time is nice and it’s still very fun as they exaggerate everything to the highest limit they can while making sure to have the IT’S TWOOF dog tell you it isn’t fake (even if it’s a bit played up for the show, as long as it’s based on a real true thing).
Most Needing of A Sequel
Shoukoku no Altair
Altair is an epic (the classical usage) depicting a fictionalized version of mostly historical events revolving around the Ottoman Empire and the Holy Roman Empire…and it’s surprisingly realistic about all of it, especially the brutality of things at the time. Loads of family members killing each other for power or to stop one of them who is abusing theirs, tons of deep and very focused-on politics, and when action does show up it’s extremely strategic and tactical rather than fast “for TV” clashes and it involves, again, a lot of just pure brutality in some of those tactics.
The main character doesn’t like war but he’s a soldier and a general, and he never acts like most main characters in these types of shows like…let’s go with that awful shitheap Arslan which was ATTEMPTING something like this. Arslan failed in every single way but it ALSO included a pacifist whiny shithead kid for a lead to make an already terrible tragedy of a show even worse, here, Mahamut isn’t afraid to kill or use the deceased as a tool of strategy. The contradiction within him is prevalent in the show and comes up a lot actually but is basically explainable pretty easy by just saying he understands how the world works – you can’t stop war without waging it even harder than the ones you need to stop. Plus, it really doesn’t glorify any of the violence – even main antagonistic characters end up dying in swift ways and often times by random soldiers. It’s realistic allllmost to a fault in that it skips on what could be really cool “boss fights” – yet if it did those it would ruin what this show is for me, which is practically a documentary on the History Channel…well I was going to say a fictional History Channel but at this point this is probably more accurate to real life than what that fucking channel airs about aliens and shit.
Because of what the show is though it ABSOLUTELY needs a sequel – the story spans such a long period of time and the rise of an empire and the fall of another, you can’t just end it at the beginning of the counter-invasion!
Runners-up: Blood Blockade Battlefront & Beyond, Nobunaga no Shinobi
Best First Episode
The first episode of this show sets the mood more perfectly than I’ve seen most things ever do, it’s really hard to capture the entire essence of a full story in the first 24 minutes of it – let alone the VERY FIRST minutes of it – but Just Because manages to create an entire 24 minutes from start to finish that perfectly portray what you’re getting into and it never betrays that expectation it gives either. First you get an introductory sequence that showcases every main character we’ll meet along this journey living their normal lives with a really well presented feeling of melancholy mixed in as the main character finally arrives in town on the monorail. Honestly it was that just entire first 2 minutes that made me realize I was going to really like this show.
Then they took it even further in the second half of the episode and once that insert song hits and is done in such a cool way (it’s actually music being played in the actual show rather than music for the viewer and the sound work is done correctly too for that, plus once the whole band kicks in instead of just the trumpets it gets louder and just feels so damn good) and while he’s trying to hit this home run to motivate himself you see all the main characters again and this recognition that all their lives are about to take a turn because of the main character showing back up in their lives (and showing up at all for one of them). It really is a perfectly done first episode and does an incredible job at presenting you with what this show is, what it’ll continue to be, and the levels of emotion it’s going to be able to reach.
Yuki Yuna wa Yusha de Aru Washio Sumi no Shou
Yet again the prequel ark of Yuki Yuna shows up – and with good reason. This portion of the new season of Yuki Yuna was only 6 episodes long and yet it felt like 26. Every character was so well developed and made so easy to like and become connected to as a viewer that events that shouldn’t have any impact because you barely know these girls comes off as incredibly emotional. Hell, one was a thing you know is coming if you watched season 1 – and yet it was one of the best sequences this year. That’s INCREDIBLE given it’s basically a 6 episode show and wasn’t even the final of those 6, and seriously it just felt so much longer and like I had spent so much more time with these girls. It was some of the best pacing I’ve ever seen in the medium and absolutely needs more credit for it.
“Eating grains causes weight gain. So I must get rid of them.“ – Mr. Non-Carb Diet. Love Rice 2
I’ll go ahead and say Non-Carb Diet also is the best antagonist of the year. And yes, that’s actually his real name.
Best Reverse Trap
Kenka Banchou Otome: Girl Beats Boy
Runners-up: Tomboy’s fanservice intros in every episode + special OP – Animegataris, National Defense Mask – Yuki Yuna wa Yusha de Aru Washio Sumi no Shou
Attempting to force someone to be a beta-orbiting cuck while you get plowed by whoever you want while he waits patiently for you to graduate is a clear sign of a filthy whore who wants to get a taste of as much cock as she can – which she’d do either way – but this way she’s free of guilt, all while knowing guys are more likely to actually be faithful to waiting. You can say “but that’s just real life, this is anime!” (and you can prove it with statistics that are now showing it’s the case as more and more women are even getting to the point of suicide because of men not waiting for them to try a bunch of dicks then come to the reliable one) but not only is this a realistic anime set in the normal world with believable characters, the girl herself admits she doesn’t trust herself – I know what she probably means, but it absolutely includes that. And before you get started trying to harass me about it, no, I never went through that type of situation because I’m not fucking retarded.
Tsuki Ga Kirei
I’m gonna just spoil this and say this shows up on my top 5 anime of the year post which will be up very very soon. I’ll explain why this won this category there. I tried to here but it came out way too long.
Runner-up: Just Because
Akane x Kotarou
I mean, same as above! Deal with it! Deal with this image randomly sometimes having weird fucking pixellation issues and other times not having them too.
Ai Mai Mi Surgical Friends
I love every single bit of animated Choboraunyopomi work and this needs to never stop being made. We’re getting that weird B-kub show soon but it’s just not the same, nobody is like Choboraunyopomi or as good as making very literal “LOL SO RANDUM XD” without making it, well, THAT and coming off instead as some of the most hilarious unearthly demented shit that nobody would ever think of and tons of small details like the sound design and Mii pissing herself half the goddamn time just makes it even better. This is like the third season of Ai Mai Mii but, really, just never stop.
Runners-up: Onyankopon, Pikotaro no Lullaby
Best Action Series
Blood Blockade Battlefront & Beyond
Another one I’ll explain in the AOTY post. Oops, spoilers!
Runner-up: My Hero Academia 2, Saiyuki Reload Blast, Youjo Senki
Best Club-Focused Series
Fastest Finger First
Is trivia really a sport? Well I suppose you could argue it is because it’s a competitive event and there is definitely skill level involved – but regardless of whether it is or not, this anime absolutely is designed as a sports show and it works really well. I didn’t want to say sports so I said club-focused. It’s unique, interesting, has a few cute girls including the lead who is voiced by a newbie who sounds really cute for it, and makes what is basically just buzz-in trivia into an enjoyable shounen sports-styled show with all the bits and pieces you’d expect out of if it they were playing basketball or baseball only replace that with knowing random bullshit about random bullshit. It doesn’t take itself overly serious or anything either and is definitely just a fun and weird thing.
Tsuki Ga Kirei Epilogue
I almost chose something else so I could keep from spoiling this, and I still won’t spoil it to the best of my ability, but it just has one of the most complete and beautiful epilogues during it’s final episode’s credits that it literally had me in tears. As much as the runners-up in this category were all fucking fantastic (to be honest I had all of them as the winner for this category at some point and even did the write up for each one before deleting it, doing it to the next one, and then eventually realizing that it needed to be this) this just carries too much personal weight to not be the absolute best scene this year for me, it’d be dishonest putting it beneath something else. I could cheat and make it a best ENDING category but no.
Runners-up: A Hero’s Death – Yuki Yuna prequel arc, Blood Blockade Battlefront & Beyond Finale, A bunch of scenes – Just Because
Best Stupidest Ending
Girl’s Last Tour
This is really a worst but I had to include it because fucking come on it’s so goddamn retarded that it’s hilarious – and the fact the show just has the two leads basically completely ignore it moments after makes it all the more accidentally funny. Nuke-eating angel(?) worms turn into mushrooms and float into the fucking sun (to God? I don’t fucking know) without really any explanation or lead up to it. It just happens and then is done and the girls just try and pretend they never saw it.
Blood Blockade Battlefront & Beyond
FUN. FUN TO LISTEN TO. FUN TO WATCH. Once again though I can’t link an upload of the actual ED, but luckily the official music video is actually the full song (unlike the OP) and is also fun on it’s own anyway even if it’s not nearly as fun as the actual ED video.
Runners-up: Girls Last Tour, Twin Angels Break
Special Satanichia Medal
Satanichia Kurumizawa McDowell
Runner-up: Satanichia Kurumizawa McDowell