44 CommentsYear in Review / By Scamp /

2014 Anime of the Year Awards and Top 10

mushishiIf I was to create a mental image of what anime was like in 2014, imagine a few gleaming diamonds being buried under a sea of light novels about little sisters, video game wish fulfilment and shittiness. It’s been like that for a while but it did seem like this year was especially bad for it. But don’t worry you, for thankfully we have a couple of scuba divers on hand in the for of The Cart Driver Dot Com’s Writing Staff, who have dived into that pile and dragged up an arbitrary number of anime we have arbitrarily ordered from really good to possibly one of the best anime ever…and then to one final anime that defies categorisation. Like diving below that sea of books for diamonds and finding an alien nightclub instead. So here’s our top 10 anime of 2014, along with some awards we wanted to hand out.

If you would like our individual top 10 anime of the year, go can read Shinmaru’s top 10, Inushinde’s top 10, or Scamp’s top 10.

2014’s 2015 Anime of the Year: Parasyte

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The first award of each year is given to the This Year’s Next Year’s Anime of the Year. The award for the best anime airing this year but doesn’t end this year so isn’t elligible. This is to prevent silly people from asking why not-yet-finished anime isn’t on this list. This year the award goes to the face-eating horror thriller anime that manages the extraordinary by making the younger modern anime fan actually care about a mid-90’s manga adaptation, while also pleasing those of us who had read the original manga. It pleased me anyway, and given that I rank the Parasyte manga as my favourite of all time, that’s pretty high praise.

10: Kill la Kill

number 10Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure won 2012’s 2013 anime of the year award and went on to take top spot for 2013. Unfortunately for 2013’s 2014 anime of the year Kill la Kill, it wasn’t able to replicate that success and narrowly knocks Gundam Build Fighters out of The Cart Driver Dot Com’s 10th best anime of 2014. But  don’t let that get you down Kill la Kill, you semi-naked, barely coherent, pile of lunacy. With your glowing penises and sentient clothing and nudist terrorist organisations and all of that nonsense you produced. It’s a testament to Kill la Kill’s infectious enthusiasm that you can be quite easily swept along with its style and presentation, allowing yourself to be taken in by the spectacle and embrace the crazy that’s unfolding in front of you. Kill la Kill looks like what someone who was making a dumb parody of anime would make, but instead made earnest and sincere and that’s precisely what makes it so entertaining.

9: Knights of Sidonia

number 9It’s rare for a show to actually be unnerving on a primal level, without losing the drive to explore the harsh world that it creates. Knights of Sidonia is probably one of the medium’s best portrayals of being thrown against the outright hostility of an unfeeling, uncaring cosmos, and the impact that it has on the human psyche, both on an individual and a societal level. Despite the characters not being developed past a superficial level, it’s hard not to sympathize with them as they’re beaten, thrashed, lose those they care about, and are generally forced to suffer in ways that they didn’t anticipate. Even the vastly compressed second half does a superb job at conveying an omnipresent sense of hopelessness at humanity’s last known hope being slowly whittled away.

Best Movie/OVA/Special: Hanamonogatari

Hanamonogatari - Large 060This particular award is usually saved for whatever the latest big anime movie that came out this year, but for whatever reason either the movies we saw stank or they took so long to come out that we didn’t have time to get to them all. So instead we can give this to the latest iteration of the Monogatari franchise. Which thankfully is possibly the strongest Monogatari arc so far, right up there with the best Second Season produced. Kanbaru continues her role as a mightily entertaining character while following the series trend of maturing as a person as the series progresses. It’s still ultimately a very similar series to the one that started back in 2009. It still has the same quirky, roundabout style of dialogue along with the quick cut animation style combined with architecture and scene framing that ignores reality in favour of aesthetic abnormality. If you weren’t on board then, you won’t be on board now. But watching this franchise progress has really been a joy.

8: Sekai Seifuku Zvezda Plot

number 8Sekai Seifuku is a show with a lot of heart lurking beneath an odd surface. It is an anime where an organization led by a child desires to take over the world (also, they’re the protagonists) and are met with resistance by a group dedicated to protecting the status quo. There is an episode-long diatribe about how crappy smokers are and how they have no souls and probably aren’t human at all. But beyond that, the stories of the individual members of each group can be surprisingly touching, even wrapped in the zany comedy and oddball setting. Ultimately it’s a story of coming to terms with one’s self-worth and the worth of other people. And fighting an evil governor.

7: Tonari no Seki-kun

Number 7One day I was sitting in class as a kid. The teacher had left the room and everyone was given work to do. I was bored so I started setting out a little battlefield for my pens and pencils and then started pitting them against each other. There were epic rivalries, scores being settled, upsets and every soap opera twist being played out in my mind as my pencils silently bashed against one another. Some girl next to me was watching what I was doing and shaking her head, but I knew. For as much as she disapproved of my actions, she wanted to know if Red Pen would get revenge on HB Pencil for defeating his old sparring buddy Blue Pen. Tonari no Seki-kun was my childhood and it spoke to me. It spoke to all of us at The Cart Driver Dot Com.

Best Bad Anime (Symphogear Memorial Award) – The Fruit of Grisaia

yyzxENKIt almost feels wrong to say that Grisaia is the best of anything, even when it’s implying that it’s the best at being enjoyably terrible. Still, its only competition is two shows that relate to Ayn Rand in some form, Dai Shogun, which barely qualifies as animation, Rail Wars, a show so agonizingly banal that having “Wars” in the title is almost an insult, and Cross Ange, which is Cross Ange. All things considered, this was a pretty terrible year for terrible. But, lucky for everyone, Grisaia pulled through. It was at the point when a girl faked her own death by holing up in her school with a gun, shooting at her father (but not actually shooting him, that was the MC acting as a sniper, for some reason), and planting a dead body on a grenade to make everyone think it was her that Grisaia solidified its place as The Cart Driver’s Best Bad Anime of 2014. The fact that it only escalated in… quality, for lack of a better word, only further solidified its position. Grisaia may have been many things, bad being among them, but it sure wasn’t boring.

6: Silver Spoon

number 6Silver Spoon’s a show that’s managed to be consistently impressive, without actually ramping up the stakes. Where the first season served as a competent introduction to the sometimes harsh world of modern agriculture, the second builds on the characters as they come to terms with the reality of an uncertain future, and the very real character flaws that exacerbate it. While Hachiken and his struggle to not be helpful to everyone all the time takes up a good portion of the show’s attention, where it really shines is in Mikage’s confusion over whether she should inherit the family farm, or pursue a more dedicated equestrian career. Equal parts sobering and reassuring, Silver Spoon is easily one of the year’s most rewarding shows.

5: Ping Pong

number 5When the barest of bones are laid out for Yuasa to lovingly cushion in psychedelic muscle, freeform fat, and artistically hideous skin, his style can really bring out the best in a work. Ping Pong is probably the best case for this, with a grounded story dripping in symbolic imagery to help the weight of situations seep in. It probably serves as one of the lone sober spots in the auteur’s eventful career, and the fact that it’s actually good only highlights how strong the man can be when he isn’t left solely to his own devices. As expressive as Ping Pong is, it just wouldn’t have been as memorable if everyone was bubble people. Or if it had poorly drawn nudity.

Biggest Disappointment: TIE Psycho Pass 2 and Terror in Resonance

disappointmentsIn the end the judges were undecided which of the two was more disappointing. Do we give it to the anime with fantastic ideas, an unbelievably talented staff, gorgeous production and massive hype turning out to be a boring, pretentious load of twaddle with unlikable characters and the worst mystery stories created by randomly opening a story of Greek myths, shutting your eyes and pointing at the page? Or do we give it to the anime with an impressive first season changing lead writers for its hotly anticipated sequel and creating something laughably stupid whose existence as a sequel gave the impression the writers never understood what made the first season so compelling? In the end we just called it a tie. Congratulations Terror in Resonance and Psycho Pass 2. Now both of you sit in the corner and think about what you’ve done.

4: Hunter X Hunter

number 4Hunter x Hunter is a show whose length — 148 episodes — seems daunting, but is manageable because the show never stops getting better. (It’s true, anime can do that sometimes!) Indeed, Hunter x Hunter’s best run is in its final year: the heartbreaking climax of the Chimera Ant arc and the political games of the Election arc. Hunter x Hunter flows seamlessly from tense battles to small emotional moments to relieving comedy and anything else one could think of. Each arc tells an interesting story and jumps to a different genre, keeping the show fresh but also managing to keep everything cohesive. How? A cast of characters with compelling struggles that illustrate the best and worst not just of this fictional world, but of our own as well.

3: Space Dandy

number 3

There’s this guy called Dandy. He’s a dandy guy in space. He’s a bounty hunter, but kinda sucks at it. He goes to space Hooters. He travels with a space cat and an autotuned vacuum cleaner. Now go.

So said Shinichiro Watanabe to each new episode director he brought onto each new episode of Space Dandy (paraphrased obviously). What those 26 wildly talented directors brought was an array of phenomenally imaginative, incredibly entertaining and each just so different from each other that you genuinely never knew what sort of episode would you get next week. Would you get a dreamlike travel to a world of taking plants, or get trapped on a burning planet with a talking fish. How about High School Musical, or zombies, or purgatory, or rock and roll, or a robot rebellion. Anything and everything was on the table. And most remarkably of all, they actually justified it all in the end. They actually tied these 26 episodes together in a way that was surprisingly coherent and satisfying. What a remarkable series.

Worst Anime: Dai Shogun

dai shogunIt’s not often I will evoke a comparison to Musashi Gundoh, easily the worst anime ever created purely from a production capacity, so I would like to put in a few caveats here. While the character designs for Dai Shogun are similar both in style and awfulness to Gundoh, at least the character designs didn’t have jpeg artefacts. While Dai Shogun did have a very similar ‘animation’ style in that the only movement in the entire series was them shaking the camera to try hide the fact there was no animation, at least Dai Shogun didn’t take blurry pictures of trees and wibble that about as the background moving. Musashi Gundoh on a story  level though was at least just trying to do some samurai gunslinger story, rather than some awful harem-y jokes about virgins and brothels. So yes, while Dai Shogun may not be as bad as Musashi Gundoh, it is the closest I’ve ever seen anime come to that legendary show. That alone means it deserves this award.

2: Mushishi Season 2

number 2You know those compilation anime OVAs or projects that are put out? Things like the Anime Mirai projects or things like Neo Tokyo or Freedom? Usually with these projects they are a very mixed bag but there will be this one standout short with excellent storytelling that really stuck with you. It’s the one that you tell people it’s worth watching. Mushishi is like an entire anime of those excellent individual stories for like 50 episodes worth. Each episode delivers fantastically as a little piece of storytelling. You can sink into its atmosphere and let its excellence wash over you. It’s not exactly relaxing since it’s frequently horrific. It’s more like it takes you in a tender yet firm grasp for its duration, tricking you into thinking you’re watching something relaxing but instead giving you a new-found fear of looking at your own reflection in a pool of water. It was a fantastic anime back in 2005 and it turns out it’s still a fantastic anime in 2014.

It would have to take something truly special to knock this masterpiece off the top spot for the year…

Yup, something truly special all right…

*Scamp sulks in a corner*

1: Samurai Flamenco

number 1Justice has truly prevailed. Samurai Flamenco is the year’s most polarizing anime. It has flaws aplenty: the story is messy, the tone is all over the place after a certain big event, and BOY is the production rough, as if some of the animators had to be forced to finish certain scenes at gunpoint. However, no other series — not even Hunter x Hunter or Kill la Kill — was as thrilling a roller coaster ride as Samurai Flamenco. Fans and detractors alike simply had to tune in for the next episode to see just what the hell would happen next, to know how the creative team would push the story further into the outer reaches of the universe. Those who stuck with SamFlam found a story of a dorky fan’s journey into what it means to be a hero and how to grow up beyond that. They also found a charming tribute to the types of shows so many grew up on and hold dear in their hearts. Even in the context of battling a surprise alien, being a hero means something.

Reader’s Choice Award

Best anime series to end in 2014 (Choose 3)

  • Hunter X Hunter (31%, 245 Votes)
  • Ping Pong The Animation (27%, 218 Votes)
  • Mushishi 2 (27%, 212 Votes)
  • Kill la Kill (25%, 196 Votes)
  • Space Dandy (18%, 140 Votes)
  • Monthly Girl's Nozaki-kun (17%, 132 Votes)
  • Barakamon (11%, 86 Votes)
  • Silver Spoon (9%, 74 Votes)
  • Rage of Bahamut: Genesis (8%, 64 Votes)
  • Knights of Sidonia (7%, 57 Votes)
  • Samurai Flamenco (6%, 49 Votes)
  • Haikyuu!! (6%, 48 Votes)
  • No Game No Life (6%, 46 Votes)
  • Space Brothers (6%, 45 Votes)
  • Tonari no Seki-kun (5%, 40 Votes)
  • Log Horizon (4%, 35 Votes)
  • Hoozuki no Reitetsu (4%, 32 Votes)
  • Other (not mentioned here) (4%, 31 Votes)
  • Gundam Build Fighters (4%, 31 Votes)
  • Terror in Resonance (4%, 28 Votes)
  • Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn (3%, 25 Votes)
  • Noragami (3%, 24 Votes)
  • Magi: The Kingdom of Magic (3%, 21 Votes)
  • Ghost in the Shell: Arise (3%, 21 Votes)
  • Psycho Pass 2 (3%, 20 Votes)
  • Free!: Eternal Summer (2%, 19 Votes)
  • Sekai Seifuku (2%, 15 Votes)
  • Love Live! School Idol Project 2nd Season (2%, 14 Votes)
  • Nagi no Asukara (2%, 13 Votes)
  • Selector Infected/Spread Wixoss (2%, 13 Votes)
  • Chaika - The Coffin Princess- (2%, 13 Votes)
  • Sword Art Online 2 (2%, 12 Votes)
  • Amagi Brilliant Park (2%, 12 Votes)
  • Witch Craft Works (2%, 12 Votes)
  • Sabagebu! (1%, 11 Votes)
  • Golden Time (1%, 11 Votes)
  • Kuroko's Basketball 2 (1%, 10 Votes)
  • Hajime no Ippo: Rising (1%, 10 Votes)
  • Kuroshitsuji: Book of Circus (1%, 9 Votes)
  • Bokura wa Minna Kawaisou (1%, 9 Votes)
  • Hanayamata (1%, 9 Votes)
  • Nisekoi (1%, 9 Votes)
  • One Week Friends (1%, 7 Votes)
  • Tokyo Ravens (1%, 7 Votes)
  • Akame ga Kill! (1%, 6 Votes)
  • The Irregular at Magic High School (1%, 5 Votes)
  • Baby Steps (1%, 5 Votes)
  • Blue Spring Ride (1%, 4 Votes)
  • When Supernatural Battles Became Commonplace (0%, 3 Votes)
  • Hamatora (0%, 3 Votes)
  • The World is Still Beautiful (0%, 3 Votes)
  • Nanana's Buried Treasure (0%, 2 Votes)

Total Voters: 796

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Can’t have too many complaints with your tastes, although I do wish Seki-kun got higher. Although I do like that it ranked above Log Horizon and Terror in Resonance. Maybe our reader’s taste in anime isn’t so bad after all.

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42 Comments

  1. Posted January 1, 2015 at 11:53 pm | Permalink

    Great list, and a great idea, incorporating the various awards between the “main-list” members, rather than placing them all at the end, or another post, which reduces eyeball retention rates.

    I’ve said before a show can have flaws and still be a perfect show (which is how I described my best show of 2013, Kyousougiga). I don’t think Samurai Flamenco is a perfect show, and it certainly has a lot of flaws, but the more I sit here and think about what I think of it, the more I liken it to Shin Sekai Yori, where I kept finding small issues I’ve had with it which made it less than perfect, until I’ve realized, “Fuck it, these are excuses, even with all this flaws, the show is a masterpiece.” and slapped that 10/10 rating on it, and 2nd place for 2013.

    So, having watched Pupa, but not Dai Shogun, though I’ve heard quite a bit on Dai Shogun, how much worse than Pupa is it? Just “Imagine Pupa, but full-length” is already terrible, but that’s a question of quantatity, not quality :P

    My personal biggest disappointment was definitely Chuunibyou Ren. They even had the gall to promise for next season what was promised for here, and to tell us, “This wasn’t only expected, but that you weren’t given what you were told was good.” Damn you, KyoAni.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:21 am | Permalink

      That’s actually a pretty solid comparison! I certainly had a few issues with Shin Sekai Yori, but when I thought about it, it was a show that kept me consistently wondering what was going on (in a good way) and looking forward to the twists and turns of the plot, the characters, and the world itself. Lots of fun, that show. (You know, as “fun” as a show like that could be.)

      I can’t speak to the quality of Dai-Shogun as a whole, but … I did watch all of Pupa and don’t think I even finished the first episode of Dai-Shogun. So there’s that.

    • Posted January 2, 2015 at 1:47 am | Permalink

      All of Pupa isn’t that much longer than an episode of Dai Shogun, and you’ve had a week between each dose of 3 mins :P

      Well, the realization a show can be perfect/great even while having flaws is very liberating. You don’t have to try and nibble at your own patience for enjoying a “flawed show”.

      Everything’s flawed.

      Also, that comparison is nothing like the fact I think the show closest to Aku no Hana in terms of feel is K-On! – Because they all revolve 100% about atmosphere, which makes marathoning them impossible for me :P

  2. Posted January 1, 2015 at 11:57 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for going with some truly bad anime shows and not giving recognition to some of the overrated ones (MAH*UKA).

    • Shinmaru
      Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:21 am | Permalink

      We take bad seriously. Kind of.

  3. Hogart
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:00 am | Permalink

    Other than hoping you’re kidding about Parasyte, I can’t find too much fault in your picks. I will say that it’s actually a bit surprising just how “love it or hate it” Flamenco is, even though it’s obviously divisive. It’s also quite unsettling to see Hanamonogatari on so many toplists while being one of those people who “don’t get it” (but then this wasn’t a great year for films/OVAs so whatever). I too would have liked to see more people recognize Seki-kun, and perhaps Nobunaga Concerto.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:24 am | Permalink

      I’m not big into *monogatari anymore, but the people who still watch those seemed big into the recent stuff, so hey!

  4. arcanes
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:07 am | Permalink

    Tell me it ain’t true. I must be dreaming. Samurai Flamenco number 1???? well shit, GUILLOTINE GORILLA was real after all.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:25 am | Permalink

      YOU WILL NEVER STOP GUILLOTINE GORILLA

    • Inushinde
      Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:50 am | Permalink

      Shinmaru and I Guillotine Gorilla’d Mushishi. I never thought I’d live to see the day.

    • tales_of_chris
      Posted January 3, 2015 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

      My thoughts exactly. I dropped the show around the time where they were arguing who deserved to be the red ranger. I don’t see how the show could have possibly redeemed itself. But, ya know, opinions and what not.

      The rest of the list seems great, although I haven’t seen #7 and #8. It’s great to see Gin no Saji recognized.

  5. Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:14 am | Permalink

    As always, this was my most anticipated Top 10 list of the year, and as always, it turned out great. Even though I dropped Flamenco like a hot potato shortly after *that* episode, the 2-3-4-5 combo of Mushishi, Space Dandy, Hunter X Hunter and Ping Pong is proof of this blog’s excellent collective taste. I might even find the motivation to pick up where I left off with SamFlam one of these days, but not before watching Dai Shogun – the description provided here makes it sound like mandatory viewing.

    Hope you all have a great 2015!

    • Shinmaru
      Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:26 am | Permalink

      Same to you!

  6. Ibri
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:40 am | Permalink

    Huh didn’t think SF would get the first place, but I suppose it was on a second and on a first place in the separate list so I should have expected it. (Though as a detractor I have to say that I certainly didn’t have to see what happens next, expect directly after that episode.)
    HxH is higher than I thought it would be too (though I liked it) what with Scamp not having watched it, but I guess being number 1 in one of the list gives a good amount of points.
    Aside from SF and KLK I can agree with the list. (Not that I would necessarily order them the same way, but that I consider them to be them among the better animes of the 2014er onesj)

  7. gedata
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 1:48 am | Permalink

    “Still, its only competition is two shows that relate to Ayn Rand in some form, Dai Shogun, which barely qualifies as animation, Rail Wars, a show so agonizingly banal that having “Wars” in the title is almost an insult, and Cross Ange, which is Cross Ange”

    Anyone remember a certain special show by the name of Bryhnildr in the Darkness?

    • Posted January 2, 2015 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

      The Stephen Hawking maid remembers.

    • Ze Toshiest
      Posted January 5, 2015 at 5:33 am | Permalink

      Do not speak that name without cause. The very mention of it can break a lesser man.

  8. almostNEET
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 2:46 am | Permalink

    Can’t say I enjoyed Dandy… At best it reminded me of a better City Hunter(which I found as average). Other than that nice list, though I haven’t watched half of the Top 10. And HxH seems to be ranked higher than i thought it’d be(the Chimaera arc was waaaay too long for me)

  9. Outcast
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 6:09 am | Permalink

    I was hoping I would be the only voter for Mahouka, denying you guys the pleasure of actually seeing it with zero votes; but apparently four other people had the same thought. Either that, or they genuinely enjoyed it…

  10. shytende
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    Hey,I didn’t watched Grisaia, but we had plenty of best bad anime. WIXOSS, but also Hamatora.
    Hamatora had Purple Hulk’s diet, a Sea Cucumber battle, and a minor gay villain, who mind control people with the sweet scent of his push ups. It is a real mess, with no sense of story telling, shock value for the heck of it, and no sense of decency.
    I’m not sure if it wasn’t a self parody at time.

    But I was always looking for the next episode to see ghow stupid it would become.

    • kai
      Posted January 2, 2015 at 11:30 am | Permalink

      I watched Grisaia, Rail Wars and tried to watch Cross Anal. To be fair I dropped the latter so I won’t judge it but of the two I watched to the end I’d say Rail Wars was cruelly robbed of a well deserved Best of the Worst award.

  11. Silverbeard
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    With the sad exception of Space Brothers, this is probably the best list 2014 could get you.

    >In the end the judges were undecided which of the two was more disappointing.

    How is this even possible? There are three of you exactly for situations like this. For example, Shinmaru votes Psycho Pass, Inushinde votes Terror in Resonance, and then Scamp breaks the tie. Yet here is a tie. Why do you guys even need Scamp again?

    • Shinmaru
      Posted January 2, 2015 at 5:27 pm | Permalink

      Honestly, I forgot Space Brothers even ended this year. But I’ve seen other people recognize it — more than expected, really — so people stuck it through!

    • Inushinde
      Posted January 3, 2015 at 10:22 pm | Permalink

      Either Scamp or me voted for both, and I wasn’t one to disagree with either.

  12. Varyn
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

    A decent list, were it not soiled by that disgrace at no. 1, how could you let this happen scamp.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted January 2, 2015 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

      Soiled? I think you mean LIFTED INTO GREATNESS.

  13. Anon
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

    Hi I new to anime, thanks for Samurai flaminco recommend I watch now best anime 2014.

  14. fathomlessblue
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

    I was honestly expecting Mushishi, Space Dandy & HxH to be the 1-3 picks, so at least I got the order right, even if the list suffered from a massive bout of team-trolling. Well played, sirs.

    In regards to the dire number of anime movies this year, I recall Jonathan Clements stating that much the industry had deliberately delayed upcoming films by a few years, in anticipation for the cinematic & subsequent home video release of The Wind Rises, which as a Miyazaki work, would dominate domestic takings (also Frozen, for family audiences). It explains why Patema Inverted was one of the only big animated films to be released in 2013, while this year’s film festivals (eg Scotland Loves Anime) really only had Giovanni’s Island to show, with the rest dreck like the Bayonetta film.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted January 2, 2015 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

      tbh that’s what I expected too haha

  15. Nagisa33
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

    Watching SamFlam after GG was like watching Psycho Pass 2. My investment in the story was shot and I kept hoping it would somehow return to its former self. After some painful interest I had to stop King Torturing myself.

    Anyway, great job guys. This year had a lot of great moments and I’m glad the Cart Driver trio was there to talk about them. Thank you and cheers to a fantastic 2015!

  16. Shikamaru
    Posted January 2, 2015 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    I’m little sad that Barakamon was barely mentioned. Scamp mentioned it and that was it. It was easily the anime of the year for me. At least other people voted it. That makes me happy.

    I didn’t like Samurai Flamenco but I have to give it some credit. It was always really fucking entertaining. How can show be so horrible and good at the same time?

    I don’t get Space Dandy. Let’s just leave it at that.

    Then there is HunterXHunter. I watched the first two episodes when it was new and honestly I thought they were really mediocre. I don’t remember anything that happened. And I still remember the first episode of Naruto and Bleach despite not having watched them in 9 years. Naruto and Bleach had better first episodes. I still don’t get why HunterXHunter is ranked so high. Maybe I really should give it a second chance some day.

    Then again After Story is ranked so fucking high as well. And I love After Story. It’s in my own top 20 list easily, but number 4??? That’s a bit too high even for me. I’m happy that people love Clannad, but it’s not THAT great.

    Anyway happy new year to everyone. Sorry that I’m late. I was too busy getting wasted with my friends.

    • Varyn
      Posted January 3, 2015 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

      Oh yeah I thought HxH sucked dick for the first 4-5 episodes. But it just kept getting better and better and better in a way I’ve never seen a long shounen work do before. If you willing to invest in the much weaker earlier arcs there is definitely a big pay-off. Something about the morality of the universe in the context of a shounen adventure show is just so fascinating to me.

      • Shinmaru
        Posted January 3, 2015 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

        Yes, the weakest part of this adaptation is that it takes a while to build up steam; the first adaptation at least has that interesting tone and style to set it apart. I do think it’s a lot to ask of people to stick with it for that long for the worthwhile stuff. It’ll definitely be worth it to a lot of people, but for some it won’t be.

    • Mr. Anon
      Posted January 5, 2015 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

      The first arc it’s basically generic shounen land with a few hints of something more on the horizon. After that it becomes anything but generic.

  17. Posted January 3, 2015 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

    yeaaah , knights of sidonia are here ! >0<

  18. Hanasra
    Posted January 4, 2015 at 2:02 am | Permalink

    I should watch Space Dandy (but not Samurai Flamenco).

  19. Posted January 4, 2015 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

    I think I’d watch Space Dandy. A lot of anime bloggers have included it in their top ten list.

  20. Jeremy09
    Posted January 4, 2015 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

    Not TOO shocked a website named after Code Geass’ ludicrously stupid must-watch thrills would have Samurai Flemenco. You could rip it to shreds a dozen different ways, from its ugly ass production, bizarre tonal shifts, just wild plot turns…but you can’t stop watching it anyway.

  21. Ze Toshiest
    Posted January 5, 2015 at 5:34 am | Permalink

    I believed in Samurai Flamenco since episode 1. As the series progressed and common sense (not to mention production values) got thrown out the window, my resolve threatened to falter…but I stood firm. And what did my dedication get me in the end? God dismissing the “power of Flamenco” as a spelling error and a gratuitous ass-shot of Masayoshi in the final episode.

    SamFlam gave me joy the likes of which I may never experience again.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted January 5, 2015 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

      Someone gets it.

  22. Yokoelf
    Posted January 7, 2015 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    Two of the anime I liked the most are on the Disappointment section. I understand about PsychoPass 2, since the first was a masterpiece, the weight on the sequel was heavy.

    But I don’t understand about ZnT. You can only be disappointed with it if you didn’t knew what to expect. The first anime from Watanabe I watched, Michiko to Hatchin, made me disappointed the same way, but at the end of the last episode I started understanding what the anime was about. The focus wasn’t on the overall plot, but on the characters, their moments together and alone, and the emotions they lived, happy or melancholic.

    That it’s more or less what ZnT is about. When I saw the first episode, I knew that regardless of the mystery-filled plot presented, what I would get was no explanations or development, but momentary dramas, filled with melancholy and amazing Yoko Kanno music. Which, in a way, can also define Cowboy Bebop. In that aspect, ZnT did quite well.

  23. chad28
    Posted January 9, 2015 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

    I thought Psycho-pass 2 was a cash grab, with a villain who is a low grade copy of Makishima and that did nothing for the story as a sequel. And plot holes: Come on, a bunch of corpses with blood flow can not be identified by the system but a cyborg can. That makes no sense. A simple pulse detector can detect if something is alive and exists. The ear thing made no sense: when did “born evil guy” gave the “guy that did not enter the plane” the ear?
    I really liked Terror in Resonance, I liked the characters, they had a reason, an objective why they were doing what they were doing. I didn’t thought it was pretentious either, are you talking about the greek puzzles? I thought those were well explained and had a reason to be there which was explained.

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