The past few years have grown on me as I’ve tried to consume as much programmimg as possible with my return to anime, especially in the wake of so many live action adaptation. Shows like Keijo, Death Parade, Samurai Champloo, Ajin, Hunter X Hunter, RWBY and Kurumanda Masami’s 1986 classic, Saint Seiya: Sanctuary, have all been okay to pass the time with, but I’ve grown into several favorites along the way.
Kill La Kill, hailed from the director of Gurren Lagann, comes first among the bunch as one of the more memorable ones for me. Aside from its seemingly trashy narrative are deeper messages with respect to clothing and the act of militarial assimilation, all that stemming from the story of a vengeful school girl-turned-reluctant savior of the world when she becomes imbued with powers on behalf of a school girl outfit manufactured from an alien thread. It’s a show that drew my interest so much so, thanks in part to the show’s jocose approach to sex and sexuality in addition to some truly amazing action and the signature sounds of vocalist Kobayashi Mika, that I even inspired Ard Vijn over at ScreenAnarchy to post about what a live-action film version cast would look like. And I believe, still, that a film like this is possible and deserves to happen. I will take that to my grave no matter what.
Equally, live-action is somethinh I could apply to a lot of animes. It recurs in my mind even further thanks to Kitoh Mohiro, whose 2003 manga, Bokurano, spawned an anime series in 2007, telling of fifteen children who find themselves lured into a plodding and emotional death spiral when a “game creator” contractually persuades them to pilot a giant, psychically powered mecha to defend earth against other sizeable threats. Both the drama and sci-fi spectacle are paced at a slowburn which would normally draw me away from any series or film unless it really intrigued me. A friend of mine named Kimmy recommended it though and I’ve been purely drawn in with each episode as we observe the intrapersonal drama between our ill-gotten heroes and their backstories leading up to their respective moments of truth, and their courage to confront not only death, but other resounding mysteries behind why their fates are locked into such a deadly fight for their planet. I’m about halfway into the show and I personally can’t wait to see how it all plays out.
There are other shows I kind of struggle with like JoJo’s Bizzare Adventure which had me starting with its Diamond Is Unbreakable arc intially. Earlier this year I tried viewing it from the very beginning and despite the catchy opening titles, interesting stories and application of various superhuman abilities, the over-the-top optics kind of exhausted me some which is why I haven’t returned to it in quite a bit. I also managed to catch One Punch Man as soon as it hit Netflix and currently sits me with the masses as one of the most fun and thrilling action animes I’ve ever seen next to The Seven Deadly Sins and Attack On Titan, both which have new goodies coming in 2018.
Last and far from least is Gintama and I’ve written a world of articles about this show since I started bingeing on it last August and ultimately finishing more tham 300+ episodes earlier this year. Inspired by manga creator Sorachi Hideaki, the series has several identities to itself, but I think it’s safe to say this show benefits from its unconventional mixture blending slaptick, fourth-wall breaking comedy with solid action and genuine thrills, often wrapped in a genuine and grounded message and touching, poignant drama that anyone can adhere to no matter how unorthodox Sorachi’s method is. It’s certainly an unabashed series that makes no apologies – unless it’s making an apology in which case you can expect that apologies to do a full one-eighty any day of the week and in which case you’re just going to have to shut up and laugh it off anyway.
Gintama, I can wholly say, is my absolute, most favorite anime thusfar and I don’t see myself getting disinterested any time soon, especially following the events of the Rakuyo Desicive Battle Arc. The live action film from director Fukuda Yuichi which focuses on the Benizakura Arc also has my interest and it’s coming soon to the U.S. following its run at Fantasia Festival in Montreal and previous Japan release over the summer.
I could go on and on (I’m keen on Naruto and One Piece but frankly we’re talking several hundreds of episodes there and I’m a little weary), but I think I’ll leave the floor to you with the aforementioned title of this piece. Sure, it’s probably a deep question but I seldom get to write op-editorials what with all the trade news I follow and I felt like blurting out some thoughts on the matter.
So…have at it! Tell us your favorite anime in the comments below!