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suggestions for first-timers
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Posted 2/28/14 , edited 2/28/14
hello. new here to CR and really starting to get into some of the newer series!

i've been watching anime for many years and own around 160+ series and movies on DVD and blu-ray, but i find that most people just look at me as an adult that watches cartoons. my last two significant others were somewhat familiar with anime and used to even like a few series themselves so it wasn't much of an issue. my newest one however has never seen a single animated movie or series in her life -- didn't even really know what it was. she likes dramas but would probably watch anything (she watches a variety of popular television shows like game of thrones, mad men, breaking bad, etc...). as previously mentioned, i have plenty of options available but i find it difficult to choose in fear of its results.

TL;DR: are there anime movies or shows you'd recommend for someone who has never seen one before? or do you remember a movie or series that really got you into anime? i'd greatly appreciate any help!
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31 / M / Bellingham WA, USA
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Posted 2/28/14 , edited 2/28/14
I think you should go for something a female would enjoy (no big Shonen titles probably like Naruto), and unless the rare event she actually speaks Japanese I would go dubbed for sure. First timers shouldn't start with subtitles.

So that being said, I think I'll suggest Clannad. It has a heart warming story that any girl should like, nice clean animation (even though the character design is a little alien-ish), and it has a....adequate dub.
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29 / M / Illinois
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Posted 2/28/14
It all depends on what she likes. A good start would be any Ghibli movie really. There's no objectionable content and the visuals even from their older shows still look great.

I wouldn't recommend starting her out with an old anime series (we're talking tv shows now, high budget anime movies) . To some newcomers the 'outdated' cel animation probably looks like shit because they are comparing it to disney cartoons and holywood movies.

Personally I've found Princess Mononoke, Castle in the Sky, Nausicaä, Summer wars, and Mardock Scramble to all be good shows.
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Posted 2/28/14 , edited 2/28/14
oh yeah, i didn't even think about subtitles as i'm so used to watching anime that way! i appreciate the thoughts!
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Posted 2/28/14

WarDog927 wrote:

hello. new here to CR and really starting to get into some of the newer series!

i've been watching anime for many years and own around 160+ series and movies on DVD and blu-ray, but i find that most people just look at me as an adult that watches cartoons. my last two significant others were somewhat familiar with anime and used to even like a few series themselves so it wasn't much of an issue. my newest one however has never seen a single animated movie or series in her life -- didn't even really know what it was. she likes dramas but would probably watch anything (she watches a variety of popular television shows like game of thrones, mad men, breaking bad, etc...). as previously mentioned, i have plenty of options available but i find it difficult to choose in fear of its results.

TL;DR: are there anime movies or shows you'd recommend for someone who has never seen one before? or do you remember a movie or series that really got you into anime? i'd greatly appreciate any help!


Their is a proper Suggestion thread, but since it's unique to First-time viewers you get a slide from me.

Well, we'll have to open up with something definitive and good so...you have a few options.

The Suggested-3 are Trigun, Full Metal Alchemist, and Neon Genesis Evangelion.

Those three are famous for a reason! They rely more on story and characters than flashy animation or silly Japanese-style parody jokes. The shows are rather toned down and very very easy to get into, each offering something different.

Next up, when you say "Animated movie" are you including Disney? BECAUSE IF SHE HASN'T SEEN DISNEY, KILL HER AND HIDE THE BODY. She doesn't have to like it, she doesn't have to know about it, she just has to have seen it. In fact, it's inconcievable that she hasn't seen a Disney movie.

It might be best to start her off with re-watching Disney movies, OR(as she sounds like a good media-buff already with a lot of Live-Action shows) you can start of on Ghibli Films.
Spirited Away and Kiki's Delivery Service are my recommended 2. Altho any of the lot can get her engaged. They're a great starting point into animation.

If/when you're ready for the more manly action stuff, Ninja Scroll is famous with good reason, and Sword of the Stranger is another amazing flick sure to catch someones attention. These two are more recommended for male-first time viewers.

I would stay away from anything "Modern Day Japan". It's fine to be all Japanese/set in Japan and all that, but keep it back in Samurai days at first. The culture shock exists you know! Before I saw hundreds of Rom/Com's I always thought Japan was a magical fiction land place because the geography and landmarks of Japan are completely foreign to me. I always thought School Uniforms was a Private-School thing, and everybody was in Private School(ergo the rich-kid metal fence and the strict rules) So...I would stay away from that stuff.

Shounen is a great initiation Genre as well, especially if they're familiar with Animation but not with complex storytelling. HunterXHunter and Hitman!Reborn are a decent watch for a girl.

Neat thing about Game of Thrones, Mad men, and Breaking Bad. They're all Western to their very cores, and have little in common with Anime in general. Similar Anime exist, but you got to know where to look! The very way the shows are is just so different......hence my suggestion of starting Trigun, FMA, and NGE.

You "could" start on Brotherhood.....but I don't suggest it. That's like starting on the Prequel movies. Unlike HunterXHunter, where the Madhouse adaption is just...it's Madhouse.
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Posted 2/28/14

Felstalker wrote:

Next up, when you say "Animated movie" are you including Disney? BECAUSE IF SHE HASN'T SEEN DISNEY, KILL HER AND HIDE THE BODY. She doesn't have to like it, she doesn't have to know about it, she just has to have seen it. In fact, it's inconcievable that she hasn't seen a Disney movie.



oh, sorry about that. i looked over my post over and over again thinking i'd do something wrong and sure enough...

you know that's a good question that i don't know the answer to! i just meant anime really, but i'm sure she's seen a disney film... or i hope anyway. i know for a fact she's never seen any of the ghibli films. i appreciate the thoughts!
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Posted 2/28/14 , edited 2/28/14
Kobato., Anohana, Steins;gate, Cowboy Bebop, or anything with a well thought-out theme with a lot of human emotion would probably work (given that things don't get weird.) Ghibli films are universally palatable as well.

A lot of people get hooked on things are dubbed to start with. So, usually whatever you'd see with a mature (mentally mature) theme on television would probably work fine.

Attack on Titan is as visually impressive as you could get from a recent anime, and that means a lot to some people.

Humanity Has Declined is visually impressive in a more fantasy way, but might be far too outlandish.

I'd find out what their favorite television shows are (and what aesthetics draw them) and see if you can find an anime with similar aesthetics. If they like detective shows, they might like an anime with a deep and complex plot. If they like the Avengers, they might like an action anime with well-developed characters. If they like romance novels, they might like a non-shallow romance anime (but having you suggest it to them might be weird) or an anime with some very emotional scenes.

If they like horror, Higurashi is alright, but it's not exactly horrifying just disturbingly graphic (no cartoon can be horrifying >.>)

Good luck
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Posted 2/28/14
"wake up girls" movie was good.
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Posted 2/28/14

Sir_jamesalot wrote:

"wake up girls" movie was good.


I've never personally seen it. What about it would you say was good?
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Posted 2/28/14

Stonewolfe wrote:

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.


Oh dear goodness.. You watched it TWICE!?
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Posted 2/28/14

HauAreWe wrote:


Sir_jamesalot wrote:

"wake up girls" movie was good.


I've never personally seen it. What about it would you say was good?


It had adult humor and this broke the ice for me as I don't typically care for idols.
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Posted 2/28/14

WarDog927 wrote:


Felstalker wrote:

Next up, when you say "Animated movie" are you including Disney? BECAUSE IF SHE HASN'T SEEN DISNEY, KILL HER AND HIDE THE BODY. She doesn't have to like it, she doesn't have to know about it, she just has to have seen it. In fact, it's inconcievable that she hasn't seen a Disney movie.



oh, sorry about that. i looked over my post over and over again thinking i'd do something wrong and sure enough...

you know that's a good question that i don't know the answer to! i just meant anime really, but i'm sure she's seen a disney film... or i hope anyway. i know for a fact she's never seen any of the ghibli films. i appreciate the thoughts!


Additionally, you can use early Dreamworks/Don Bluth movies.

The Brave little Toaster, The Land Before Time, The Secret of NIHM, An American Tail, All Dogs go to Heaven, Anastasia, and ABSOLUTELY NOTHING ELSE. They're all amazing movies worth a watch.

As said by others, keep to Dub's, and don't think older animation is a turn off. Simply stick to good stylized animation. Fist of the North Star and Mobile Suit Gundam look waaaaay old, but Dragonball still has it's own style and charm. I'm not recommending these(unless she's under the age of 13, then Dragonball all the damn way) but a lot of great older shows exist.

I'll suggest Ranma 1/2 and Inuyasha if she's interested. Rumiko Takahashi is famed as "The Richest woman in Japan" for a reason, and those are 2 of those reasons. Something about the Comedy and the Male-oriented plots with Female-oriented characters. Everybody loves a good Action scene, but you got the romance too! It's awesome and I suggest them highly. They're decent gateways into the finer stuff....but start with the earlier suggestions and work your way into these.
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25 / M / Inside Lorreen's...
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Posted 2/28/14

HauAreWe wrote:


Stonewolfe wrote:

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.


Oh dear goodness.. You watched it TWICE!?


I tempered it by watching School Days twice after it.

It's a miracle I even trust Anime or the community anymore...
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Posted 2/28/14
I would start with something that's pretty accessible like Fullmetal Alchemist, Fullmetal Panic, Trigun, or any shonen title would be a good intro. Slice of life wouldn't be bad either. Start with the ones that embody anime stereotypes first, then let them discover what they like themselves.
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Posted 2/28/14
What about Ghosthunt?
You could try stein's gate, fate/zero, psycho-pass....but honestly, if you have 160 DVDs, you should probably ask her to go through and pick one she thinks looks good. You might want to pre-select a little for quality, but if she picks then she'll like it more.
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