Anime Best of the Year Lists
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Posted 12/30/13 , edited 12/30/13
Recently I stumbled into a website that had a list for the best anime of 2013. I looked through the list and there was a few things about it that I thought were pretty limiting. The biggest issue I had with the list was that only series that had finished this year would be in consideration for the list. This removed some fairly heavy hitting series from what could be considered (including Hajime no Ippo, Kill la Kill, and Yowapeda to name a few).

I know that you can't generally consider long running shows for these things either but what if One Piece happened to be one of the best shows that year to watch?

How would you set up your list and if you happen to run a "Best Of..." list what are your usual critical analysis questions you ask when putting together a list?
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35 / M / The IshVille
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Posted 12/30/13 , edited 12/30/13
I don't really think of anime in terms of "Best of the year", just because of the way I watch. I watch alot of anime all at once, tons of series and movies, and then I'll take a several month break. Because of that, there are alot of animes I don't get around to until years after they came out. So, for me, I just think in terms of "Greatest of all time". I usually hunt lists with those titles so I can have the best experience possible.

When I consider my own personal list of GOATS, my criteria is generally 5 things:

1. Was the story one of the best I've ever seen?
Is the story a unique one? One that isn't just a rehash of something that's already been done a thousand times? Was the story told well and in a sensible manner? But beyond that, is the story more amazing than any other story I might have seen, previously?

2. Was there a character or two in there I'll remember forever?
The best animes are character driven, IMO. The best animes always have someone in them that you just can't wait to see more of. The really great ones have more than one.

3. Were there moments that happened I will never forget?
There has to be alot of these to be considered a GOAT in my opinion. Nearly every episode has to have something where you are just floored by a moment. Either it's shocking stuff like a guy killing in a woman inside of a living suit of armor once she discovers his secret. Or, just outright hilarious like half of what happens in Gintama. Or, tragically sad things like two war orphans starving to death in a cave.

4. Did it touch me emotionally?
The best animes play to your emotions well. They do a great job with the script in getting you to feel the way they want you to feel towards characters and events. They make you sympathetic towards a character, hate another character, eagerly anticipate an event, or shed tears over a death. The greatest animes make you FEEL them.

5. Was it consistent all the way through?

This is where most animes fail to make my GOAT list. They will provide all the previous four things at a high level, but will lack consistency. Usually, they will fall off at the end. The ending will be messy, they'll fail to fill a plot hole, leave an open ended question, introduce a Deus Ex Machina, etc... It's really hard to end a great anime, because the ending almost has to be superior to everything before it, because it has to validate everything before it, tie it all together, and bring it to a satisfying climax and conclusion. Many, many, many animes fail to do that. Especially romantic ones, where the protagonist never truly claims his/her love at the end.

The best animes have an exciting, sensible and definitive ending, once they come to a close.

That's my criteria for choosing.




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Posted 11/27/14
Year-end cleaning. Removing threads that have been inactive since 2013.
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