I was just an ordinary high school student, but then I began watching anime. ^_^
I'm into philosophy, interesting scenarios that are meaningfully explored, and good things in life and humanity. I prefer my anime with some extractable substance, message or point of meditation.
For me, good anime goes all the way with its concept, story, character interaction and message, pulling as few punches as possible. I feel it's a waste when an anime keeps its content and delivery lukewarm and safe, avoiding opportunities to make a real emotional or intellectual impact. Even heavy violence and lewdness can be "safe" if they don't change or communicate anything in the story. I generally dislike overpowered main characters, slow or anticlimactic relationship drama, ambiguous symbolism, and promotion or sentimentalization of rigid principles or morals. That makes me not care much for such acclaimed works as One-Punch Man, Kids on the Slope (Sakamichi no Apollon), Angel's Egg, and most shounen shows.
My favorites Only Yesterday, Summer Days with Coo and My Neighbors the Yamadas are prime examples of where you can go even with "tame" subject matters when the makers don't restrain themselves with arbitrary limitations and conventions. Do take a look at my list of favorite anime!
Here's my rating scale.
☆☆☆☆☆ | 10/10 – A superb anime with a story, theme, message or execution that had a great impact on me.
☆☆☆☆ | 8/10 – An absolutely great and enjoyable anime that I can easily recommend to someone.
☆☆☆ | 6/10 – An entertaining anime, although it could have been better in some respects, or it just didn't leave a very strong impression.
☆☆ | 4/10 – Kind of passable, but the anime has some big issues from my standpoint, and I didn't like it as a whole. It was likely boring, lame, frustrating or lacking substance more than it was entertaining.
☆ | 2/10 – The anime has very critical issues that made it quite pointless for me.
I only use a true 5-point scale to keep things clear and interesting. My ratings and reviews are not highly technical. They're also not meant to be objective, because that would make them useless. Rather, I focus on some key issues to determine whether an anime was a meaningful watch for myself or people of similar tastes. If you'd like to discuss a rating I've given, I'd be happy to share my thoughts.