Anime Yearly Summaries

2017 Anime Summary

 

Overall, I consider 2017 an okay year in anime, it isn’t as solid as 2016, but the top 4 are absolute modern classics (well, 2 of them are sequels). 2017 is the year where we see the Hollywood embraces the medium by having 2 live-action remakes to classic anime Ghost in the Shell staring Scarlet Johansson and Death Note TV series to a devastating result. Fantasy-adventure anime had a typically strong year with the crowd-pleasing Little Witch Academia, Attack on Titan Second season, Made in Abyss, Shingeki no Bahamut: Virgin Soul and Kino’s Journey remake (which is considered more as Kino Journey‘s greatest hits). Romance has a pretty good showing as well, with the likes of tsuki ga kirei, Tsurezure Children, Just Because, Net-juu no Susume, Gamers and most notably the anti-romance Scums’ WishOn the flip side we see the brief comeback of imouto subgenre (Eromanga sensei and A Sister is All You Need), which for me is absolute cancer. Kemono Friends, an adaptation of the then-dysfunction mobile game, becomes a breakthrough hit and that was something that I can’t comprehend even to this day. 2017 is also the first year of the Crunchyroll Anime Awards where they championed Made in Abyss.

Most Popular Show of 2017: My Hero Academia 2

The first season of My Hero Academia might air a year before in 2016 with modest success, but it’s this season that the show really explodes in anime fandom and becomes one of the most popular franchises of this decade. It embraces the shounen tropes with the right amount of heart and incredible animation, resulting in a predictable but always entertaining watch. This second season is an apt example of its success, and of why I never truly embrace the series. It poses some interesting questions about the grey moral of becoming a hero and points out flaws within the current hero’s system, but then it falls back on these in many occasions for a more light-hearted and straight forward action set piece. The result is a ton of sakuga sequences that is impressive in its own right, but it sacrifices all the thematic complexity in the process.

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2010s Animated Movies, Animated Movies, Animation - Anime

Animated Movies of 2010s – #13: The Book of Life, Giovanni’s Island & Boxcar Children

2014 is the year of focus this week, and I watched a bunch of 2014 releases that I missed out. 2014 falls amongst the lowest in number of animated films I wanna check out for this project (just a mere 21 films – and I had to stretch already with including a miniseries Over the Garden Wall). It doesn’t help that some that I watched aren’t that good to begin with. There are some pleasant surprises, though, with 2 out of these three exceeding my expectations. For 2014 edition we have a film about the Day of the Dead (in a decade where Day of the Dead is frequent, with Coco, the short Dia de Los Muertos (2013) and La Leyenda de la Nahuala deal with the same subject matters), a WWII anime film and American indie Boxcar Children. Let’s get down to it:

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Animation - Anime, Anime

Ranking All Monogatari arcs

With the end of the decade is drawing near, it’s time for me to revisit one of my favorite franchises of this last decade – and my all times as well – Monogatari series. Monogatari series is one rare show that despite its extreme visual style and convoluted storytelling, it still draws a delicate fan-following and becomes one of the most popular and enduring franchises the last ten years have to offer. With an “Off-season” is around the corner (of which there is no official announcement for anime adaptation as of yet but hey, do you seriously think that Shaft will get pass this golden egg? – and of which I’m mixed about: it’s time to move on), the 10-year era from 2009-2019 follows the completion of Monogatari’s main arc, spawning 15 plus mini-arcs and an entire cast larger than a football field. Monogatari has its ups and downs for sure, and we will get to that in this ranking of all the Monogatari arcs, from worst to best.

Of course, as per any ranked list, there’s some rules that needed to mention here. Some arcs that consists of several mini stories – will be included as one (like the Sodaichi arc). This gets tricky, though, when you scroll back to the Bakemonogatari season, which contains 5 mini-arcs of the same theme, and the Japanese novels and English publishions differ in the way they arranging (split into 2 in the former and into 3 in the latter). I will go with NisiOisin’s original intention – 2 small arcs. ONA’s Koyomi Vamp and trilogy-movie Kizu are included as well, that make it a total of 18 arcs. Without further ado, let’s chase them down:

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2010s Animated Movies, Animated Movies, Animation - Anime

Animated Movies of 2010s – #12: Rascal Does Not Dream of Dreaming Girl, KonoSuba: Legend of Crimson & Saga of Tanya the Evil Movie

This week, we will head to a niche market: anime TV movies from 2019. These films are all sequels of popular anime series in the past few years, which all in turns are based on popular Light Novels and while the original series are far from my Top 10 Anime material (although Tanya was close), I’m still interested in the franchises enough to follow them through. In the last couple of years, the anime medium have emphasized on following a successful season with a sequel film (or in some cases, multiple films). I suppose the main reason for that is that they can gain actual profits from releasing it in cinema and while the upside is that movie format has far better production values, we as the audiences have to wait much longer and they are not exactly newcomer-friendly. You can still watch these three films below without knowing any context, but the fact remains that there is a certain level from the films that you can only fully appreciate if you know the full context.

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2010s Animated Movies, Animated Movies, Animation - Anime

Animated Movies of 2010s – #11: Long Way North, Phantom Boy & Adama

This week, we will have a look of French animated films in 2015. It was a great year for France with 4 distinctive movies (these three along with April and the Extraordinary World, which I enjoyed) that could rival any year this decade. It’s interesting to look at the settings of these films as well as literally they are all over the place. April takes place in an alternative steampunk Paris, Long Way North is about Russian aristocrat on her journey to the North Pole, Phantom Boy takes place in whimsical New York and Adama is in a West African village. France has always been one of the leading markets in animation, and I’m glad that the country still intends to keep the art of hand-drawn animation alive and healthy. Merci.

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