Normally I do a larger article for a single series that gives my impressions of it while I’m still viewing it with a full review to follow once I’ve finished it. But I’m watching so many series that it’s a bit daunting to write so many articles that might ultimately end up sounding the same. So I’ve decided to just condense all of them into this list.
1) Mobile Suit Victory Gundam
Episodes Viewed: 17 out of 51(Fun fact: Victory Gundam was the longest running Gundam series, but has now been matched by Iron-Blooded Orphans where both seasons combined total 51 episodes, and I get the distinct impression there might be a third season which then make IBO the longest running series, provided that Build Fighters doesn’t beat it to the punch if you count Try as an extension of the first series.)
Mobile Suit Victory Gundam is from that era of Gundam that I am hesitant to dig into because of its age, but as of last year I stopped caring about that so much. Victory Gundam aired in 1993 and was Yoshiyuki Tomino’s last Gundam prior to 1999's Turn A Gundam and about 21 years before Gundam: Reconguista in G aired. It’s a nice looking series and despite being from so early in the 90's it doesn’t look all that different from the shows that followed. I guess that’s partly why I don’t have a problem watching it. I grew up on G Gundam and Gundam wing, so Victory not looking all that different gives it a familiar feeling. I can also see why Tomino is sometimes referred to as “Kill ‘em all” Tomino. So many named character deaths in just the span of 17 episodes. You would think that it wouldn’t affect you considering it’s such a short time to spend with any of these characters, but the deaths just come so quickly and hit hard enough that you come to care in that exact moment. Though, now I can partially understand why Turn A Gundam and G-Reco are far more lighthearted affairs. This series is certainly depressing.
2) Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam
Episodes Viewed: 22 out of 50
So, I actually started watching this one back in July and just never got around to finishing. Definitely not due to a lack of interest I assure you. Zeta Gundam is just awesome. Personally speaking I love the look and feel of the 80's and that is just baked into the designs of the characters. There’s a sort of inspired charm there that just isn’t present in anything post-2000. The soundtrack is also pretty kickass. Even the art style isn’t so bad. For an anime that aired in 1985 it actually wasn’t half bad looking. Not as good as the shows that came after it in the 90's, but it was definitely leaps and bounds above the original series. I haven’t really found anything not to like about this show. Now, if only I could get around to finishing it...
3) Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans Season Two
Episodes Viewed: 13 of 26
This is the last Gundam series, I promise. The first season of IBO was phenomenal so when they finally announced the second season was coming at the end of 2016 I was ecstatic. Thus far I have not been disappointed by IBO S2. To me it’s the best show of the Fall-Winter Season and this two week hiatus is absolutely killing me because the show pre-2017 left off on a REALLY interesting note. A part of me is wondering if they’ll pull a SEED with the, well, you know... sex. No seriously, it interests me that they might actually be willing to go that far for the first time since SEED. But, ya know, gotta wait for the next few episodes to see if it actually happens. Putting that aside though, the art of IBO is gorgeous as always, showing just how far the series has come in the last nearly 4 decades, and in my personal opinion IBO is the best Gundam show in a very long time, not counting Unicorn, The Origin, and Build Fighters. I’m talking gritty, dark Gundam with a great story and characters.
4) Rurouni Kenshin
Episodes Viewed: 28 out of 94
For those of you that keep up with my articles, you’ll need I already gave my impression on the first portion of Rurouni Kenshin, so this will be more of a summary of that. I haven’t gotten fatther yet because I’ve been a bit preoccupied, but I will be getting back to it soon. Rurouni is a treasure from my childhood and as such I though it only right that I go and watch the whole thing since I only ever caught a few episodes while it was airing on Toonami. Thus far I have not been disappointed and it certainly lives up to its reputation as one of the greats. It’s a shame that it had to end on an anime-original note and hasn’t received the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood treatment.
5) Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
Episodes Viewed: 3 out of 26
Don’t be alarmed, I haven’t dropped, and I certainly don’t hate it. I love it. This is another one of those series that escaped me when I was younger. It aired on Toonami quite a bit, but I always missed it, only catching an episode here and there. That is changing now. I tracked down the DVD box set of the first season and I’m slowly, but surely going through it. Have to savor that GitS greatness. Episode 2 in particular really struck me as an episode that would be hard to top. Ya know what sucks though? GitS: SAC has been out of print for a couple of years now so I figured the license wouldn’t get picked up, which is why I bought the DVD set. Well guess what? Right after New Year’s it was announced that GitS: SAC will be getting a Blu-Ray collection.... fml.
6) Ultimate Otaku Teacher
Episodes Viewed: 10 out of 24
To be completely honest with all of you, I don’t think I’ll ever understand why a lot of people don’t like this show. To me it’s like Great Teacher Onizuka for a new generation and that says a lot because GTO is one of the greatest anime ever made. UOT follows the same formula except less violence and more geekiness. It’s charming and the lessons learned are just as valuable. I really wish it would get a continuation, but for some reason I don’t see that happening.
7) Yu Yu Hakusho
Episodes Viewed: 70 out of 112
The decade that I was born in is filled with gems and Yu Yu Hakusho is one of them. There’s just so much to love about this show. Its story, its characters, its music, everything. Being an early 90's show does not detract from anything whatsoever and I’m so sorry it took me all these years to finally watch Yu Yu Hakusho properly. It’s definitely another one that I need to hurry up and finish.
Episodes Viewed: 43 out of 74
Monster was a recommendation from one of my favorite anime reviewers and god damn was he right about this one. Absolutely nothing could happen in the show, and so long as Johann was in the picture, it would still be just as good because the characters drive everything and despite the fact that he barely does anything(Well, on-screen anyway.), Johann is still a villain that creeps you out and just has this... presence that no other character has. It would honestly be really hard to adapt this into a live-action film because I just don’t think there’s an actor that could pull it off. Maybe Mads Mikkelson, but he’s a bit old to play Johann.
Episodes Viewed: 6 out of 12
This is probably one of the few shows on this list that isn’t finished simply because it was far too predictable. A good mystery needs to keep its secrets, well, secret. ERASED made it far too obvious who the big bad was so when the ending was spoiled for me it didn’t surprise me at all because I saw it coming as far back as episode 2. Don’t get me wrong, I want to finish it because all in all it is still a good show. It just lost its spark when the villain became obvious.
10) Higurashi no Naku Koro ni
Episodes Viewed: 17 out of 26
This series is here with ERASED, not because it was predictable, far from it, but because it too lost its spark. Many would disagree with me on that, but what I came to Higurashi for was unadulterated horror. The first five episodes gave me EXACTLY what I wanted. It was glorious and I was actually shaking. And then it fell off a cliff. It became less about the horror and more about the mystery. It took me two more arcs to catch onto the whole time-loop thing and the mystery itself, nor the disturbing nature of it all, was enough to keep me motivated. I still plan to finish it, and perhaps watch the other seasons, but I wish the genre was consistent from beginning to end because the first 5 episodes felt like a false advertisement.
11) Kaichou wa Maid-Sama
Episodes Viewed: 22 out of 26
I am so close to finishing this one I can almost taste it, well, actually, that was well over a year ago maybe even two years ago. It’s a great show, and it sort of reminded me of Ouran High School Host Club a little bit, and truthfully there was no reason as to why I stopped where I did. I like it, it’s great, I just need to finish it... in about two more years. Give or take.
12) Koutetsujou no Kabaneri
Episodes Viewed: 8 out of 12
Ah man, where to begin with this one. I was super hyped for Kabaneri, like you have no idea. I was prepared to call it my top pick of Spring 2016. In the end though it lost me at the Biba arc and I ultimately gave Joker Game my top pick for that season. I fully intend to finish this absolutely gorgeous series that, visually, is only rivaled by the masters at Ufotable and maybe Madhouse, and I’m not saying the story is crap either, just that I have no love for Biba and the direction the story started to go.
13) The Irregular at Magic High School
Episodes Viewed: 22 out of 26
I don’t care that the main protagonist is practically god, this show is awesome and I really do want to finish it... right after I stop getting distracted by like 50 other shows. No, seriously, the reason I stopped binging this one where I did was because I started watching a bunch of other anime. No other reason.
Episodes Viewed: 12 out of 13
In the time it has taken me to write this article for all of you, I could have finished this show, but I have not. Why? Well to be honest I don’t know why. Something just sort of... clicked in me and I stopped watching, like the show did something that I didn’t agree with. It’s strange because I can’t pinpoint what that something was. I already know how the show ends because I’ve read about it, and it didn’t bother me though the rushed nature of it does. So it’s really strange and I just haven’t been able to bring myself to finish this one. I actually really love Charlotte. It plays with your emotions like it’s a ragdoll. Then again, this is Jun Maeda we’re talking about. Remember Angel Beats? Mhm.
And of course, can’t forget those shows that I watched the first season of and now have to watch the next season of:
- Ajin Season 2
- Asterisk War Season 2
- High School DxD New
- New Prince of Tennis OVA vs. Genius 10
And then there are the other shows I’m watching, but decided not to give their own sections:
- Orange - Episodes Viewed: 1 out of 13
- Himitsu: The Revelation - Episodes Viewed: 1 out of 26
- Gantz - Episodes Viewed: 2 out of 13
- Ace of the Diamond - Episodes Viewed: 27 out of 75
- Trigun - Episodes Viewed: 12 out of 26
- Desert Punk - Episodes Viewed: 14 out of 24
- Re:Zero - Episodes Viewed: 14 out of 25
- Log Horizon 2nd Season - Episodes Viewed: 13 out of 25
- Kiznaiver - Episodes Viewed: 2 out of 12
- Kaiji - Episodes Viewed: 25 out of 26
- Dagashi Kashi - Episodes Viewed: 6 out of 12
- Black Lagoon: The Second Barrage - Episodes Viewed: 8 out of 12
- Sweetness & Lightning - Episodes Viewed: 3 out of 12
- Magi: The Kingdom of Magic - Episodes Viewed: 4 out of 25
- Mayoiga - Episodes Viewed: 2 out of 12
- Seraph of the End: Battle in Nagoya - Episodes Viewed: 8 out of 12
- Persona 4 Golden The Animation - Episodes Viewed: 5 out of 12
- Princes of Tennis - Episodes Viewed: 25 out of 170
- Hikaru no Go - Episodes Viewed: 32 out of 74
- Sakamoto desu ga? - Episodes Viewed: 7 out of 12
- Sword Art Online II - Episodes Viewed: 22 out of 24
- Kiss Him, Not Me - Episodes Viewed: 1 out of 12
- Kotoura-san - Episodes Viewed: 5 out of 12
- Big Order - Episodes Viewed: 3 out of 10
And that about covers everything.