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Yuniversal

  • Joined Sep 6, 2016
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Top 15 Favorite Anime

These 15 shows have changed my life in one way or another.
1 The Pet Girl of Sakurasou

The Pet Girl of Sakurasou

My favorite show of all time, but why? Not only is it the only 24 episode show that I managed to watch in one day, but it was also the one that hit the hardest, as it tackles one of the greatest aspects of an artist's life, which is the war between talent and hard work. Sakurasou no Pet na Kanojo deals with this theme splendidly. The main heroine is extremely talented, but despite that, she has very bad social skills and can't take care of herself. The main protagonist is the complete opposite, as he is able to take care of himself and even takes care of the heroine, yet doesn't have any special talents, nor any aspirations in life. This difference between talent and social skills causes a lot of both humorous and dramatic interactions between all of the characters in the show. If you are talented but lazy, or hard working but talentless, you will probably connect with this show in some way.

2 Aria the Origination

Aria the Origination

The best show about absolutely nothing, or so you thought. Aria gives off an air of unrelatability. Come on, it's a show that follows BOAT TOUR GUIDES who live on a now inhabitable Mars, in a city that's a carbon copy of Venice. How relatable can this ride be? The answer is, surprisingly relatable! Aria is magical, as it takes this fantasy and unimaginable world, yet makes the whole journey hit way too close to home. It does this through the incredibly dynamic relationship that the three main characters share. I like to think of them as Pokemon starters, for they all have their own strengths and faults that make none of them the superior boat guide. Thus, they work together to improve each other, as they try to chase the same dream. Aria expresses the passage of time just as well as it shows the passage of water, slow and peaceful, but still flowing nonetheless.

3 Toradora!

Toradora!

The first romcom I have ever watched, and it still holds out to be my second favorite romcom of all time. Toradora is the perfect example of "opposites attract." Ryuuji and Taiga don't seem to mesh together at all, but that's what makes their development together all the more impactful. Toradora's cast of imperfect yet lovable characters really carry the show. While they embody the everyday tropes used in almost every romcom ever, they are much deeper than that. Toradora is now considered THE romcom, and is usually the anime that people think of when the word "romcom" is mentioned. 

4 From the New World

From the New World

No show has ever made me question humanity than this one. Shinsekai Yori is one of the most impactful pieces of fiction I have ever seen, and not because it has flawless writing (far from it), but because of how powerfully it expresses its themes. It has one of the best dystopias I have ever seen, to the point where it could almost feel like a utopia, yet you know something is off. Shinsekai Yori is one of the most gray shows out there. While yes, it does view one side as "good" and another side as "bad", when you actually think about it, the roles of each side could very well be reversed. This conflict of ideals for both the characters and the viewer is what really makes Shinsekai Yori shine. Also, there's some yuri and yaoi in it!

5 Penguindrum

Penguindrum

There are some shows that have so much symbolism, it makes me research all of it for hours on end. Mawaru Penguindrum would be one of those shows, because nothing in the show wasn't put there on purpose. Every little detail, every little symbol, means something. This makes Mawaru Penguindrum one of the most fun shows to rewatch, because you WILL catch something new during every rewatch. In fact, there are still some symbols in this show that are still up to debate. This is a show that not only rewards watching at face value, as it has a very powerful and emotional story, but it also highly rewards those who want something more profound. 

6 Kaiba

Kaiba

Kaiba is another very dark dystopia, and it's a show that many will brush off because of its cartoony art style. I know many people who refuse to watch this show because they believe its a cartoon for kids, and that is literally the opposite of what this show is. Kaiba is an incredibly dark sci-fi romance, with a lot of themes about sex, corruption, manipulation, and much more. It's definitely geared towards much more mature viewers, and the world itself takes some getting used to. In the end, Kaiba is more like a tragic love story, yet you wouldn't even know it during your first time watching. 

7 Erin

Erin

This show is slow. VERY SLOW. As a result, I'll just give that disclaimer now. If you cut the amount of episodes this show has in half, you could still call this show slow. If you don't want a show like that, this show is probably not for you. However, if you are like me, and likes shows that takes a lot of time to thoroughly develop a character with as much heartbreak as possible, this show will satisfy you, and I emphasize the heartbreak part. Kemono no Souja Erin is like the less horror, more drama version of Shinsekai Yori. Just like Shinsekai Yori, it questions human laws and codes, and shows us the pain and unfairness that it can cause. There is even a much larger scheme going on in the background, which is very intriguing. 

8 Haibane Renmei

Haibane Renmei

One of the most perfect uses of subtle symbolism is the critcally acclaimed Haibane Renmei. The reason why Haibane Renmei's symbolism is so special is that every single instance of symbolism is simply part of Haibane Renmei's world. As a result, if you view Haibane Renmei strictly at face value, it would be nothing more than a slice of life drama. However, once you try to understand what each little aspect of Haibane Renmei's world means, you get taken on a philosophical journey about life and death, almost like one of those folktales that teaches a life lesson at the end. Haibane Renmei is simple and subtle, and that's what makes it complex. 

9 Puella Magi Madoka Magica

Puella Magi Madoka Magica

A happy go lucky show about magical girls, who use the power of friendship to fight witches! The 5 magical girls grow together, along with a cute cat sidekick, as they prepare themselves to fight the final witch! That's what Madoka Magica is about. Or at least, that's what I thought it was going to be about. But then, I watched it. Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica ended up scaring the living daylights out of me. Instead of the promised happy go lucky adventures, what I got was a slow yet definite sink into insanity, as the magical girls realized that their colorful fantasy was just that, a fantasy that could never become real. While I'm sure everyone knows just how dark Madoka Magica is, there are still a few people who aren't aware of the twists they are about to witness. I highly recommend this show to those who want something incredibly thrilling, with one of the highest rewatch values of all time. Your second time watching this show will be DRASTICALLY different from your first.

10 Nichijou: My Ordinary Life

Nichijou: My Ordinary Life

I don't have much to say. Nichijou is one of those "pure fun" shows. A lot of comedic shows still have their bittersweet and dramatic moments, but Nichijou isn't one of those. Nichijou is the best "cheer up" show. Feeling stressed about work? Pop an episode of Nichijou! Got dumped? Laugh along with the cast of Nichijou! Each episode is full of different skits that have little to no connection with each other, and some of them are so creative that only some fun loving kid could think of them. These skits are so engaging that by the end, you'll be smiling so hard that you have already forgotten the skits of the earlier episodes! So what do you do? Rewatch Nichijou! I'm always in a constant state of rewatching this show, and it never gets old. If only season 2 were a thing...

11 Eureka Seven

Eureka Seven

My favorite mecha series of all time, as it combines mecha with coming of age and romance, two of my favorite aspects about anime. Eureka Seven is a bloody masterpiece, as not only does it have some of the best animation of its time, but because it tells an incredibly engaging tale about a boy and a girl. These two seem to be another unlikely pairing, with our boy Renton being your usual energetic young lad, and Eureka being an otherworldy girl with very little social skills. Despite their differences, their development together during their adventures is truly one to behold. While not being the usual action fest that makes mecha anime so popular, Eureka Seven takes coming of age to a whole new level.

12 Your lie in April

Your lie in April

I'm a clasically trained pianist, and I'm sure a lot of you people are too. Music and anime always seem to come together somehow (or at least in my experience, cause a lot of my musician friends are anime fans as well.) As a result, I can say that Your Lie in April expresses the competitive side of music extremely well. To all you non-musicians out there, I just want to say that the music business is REALLY competitive. However, it is not the feeling of losing that we musicians fear the most, it is the feeling of not being able to move forward. That's exactly what happens to Kousei Arima, the progatonist, who is unable to continue playing the piano due to a past trauma. That all changes when he meets the enigmatic and energetic Kaori. Your Lie in April may have its share of flaws that prevents it from being the best drama ever, from poor comedic timing to some borderline useless side characters, but its themes of inspiration are what made it truly connect with me.

13 Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann

Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann

WHO THE HELL DO YOU THINK I AM?????? A question that turns boys into men. Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann is not only a popcorn show with pure epicness, it's also an incredibly profound show that while completely lacking in the brains department, is just full of emotion and passion. You could tell that the creators of the show felt the exact same way the characters felt. Giant explosions, robots, and massive amounts of yelling decorate a powerful and emotional story about growing up, stepping out of your comfort zone, and becoming the best that you can be. It teaches you to trust in your friends, and of course, to never give up. What seperates it from all the other generic shows that try to teach the same thing is that it actually has incredibly high stakes. Plot armor is actually on the low side, and the character interactions are much more powerful and heartfelt than the ones in other fighting shounen. Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann is a show for those who want a show that will change them, as well as those who want pure entertainment.

14 Monogatari Series: Second Season

Monogatari Series: Second Season

One of the best character studies ever made, the Monogatari franchise has always been high on my list. The characters in the show are so imperfect that it makes them 10x more lovable than almost every other character in anime. The way it incorporates supernatural lore, as well as its quirky way of storytelling through brilliant dialogue and artistic animation and cuts, makes each little character study that this show tells that much more impactful. Each character in the show is tied to some sort of supernatural being, one that embodies their true nature to some degree. The Monogatari franchise is also incredibly good at tieing different arcs together, leaving the viewer with the sense of "Oh", like a good mystery tieing things together. The Monogatari franchise is perfect for those who want witty dialogue between imperfect characters, which results in both very thought provoking conversations as well as extremely hilarious comedic banter. However, it defintiely isn't for everyone.

15 The Garden of Sinners Movie 5: Paradox Paradigm

The Garden of Sinners Movie 5: Paradox Paradigm

The Garden of Sinners is the embodiment of intense atmosphere, yet that's not what it only is. Yes, it has absolutely breathtaking art, both beautiful and eerie, as well as a very fitting soundtrack, but it's also an incredible character drama and mystery. Paradox Paradigm, or Paradox Spiral, which is the 5th movie in the Garden of Sinners series, takes an extra spotlight for being one of the biggest mindfucks ever. The story of Paradox Paradigm steps away from the more slow pacing of the other movies, and also makes it a bit difficult to follow through odd flashbacks and an unchronological style of story telling, but it uses these strategies to sculpt an incredibly engaging and thought provoking mystery that will leave you breathless at times. The 5th movie incorporates twist after twist after twist, leaving the viewer guessing the entire time. Combined with the brilliant atmosphere, genius dialogue, and the heaps of blood and gore that makes the Garden of Sinners famous, Paradox Paradigm is a true thriller. 

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