24 CommentsYear in Review / By Scamp /

Top 5 anime series and top 5 anime movies of 2010

I was getting bored of the format for my previous Yearly Reviews, mainly because I felt like I was giving out awards to anime I didn’t like. SoreMachi has the best opening and ending songs of the year but I don’t like the anime. Gundam Unicorn is clearly the best animated piece of the year, but is utterly incomprehensible.  My favourite female character award for the past 3 years keep splitting themselves between Horo and Nodame. So instead I’m going to throw all that out of the window and stick to a simply list of what I liked.

The anime series I’m counting are anything that had most of their episodes air this year. So that means no Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood or Cross Game. I gave them their dues in last years post anyway. For top movies, it’s anything that this year was the first opportunity I had to watch it. In most cases this means the DVD release in Japan, except in one obvious case. You can also assume that it’s actually top 5 movies and OVA’s, except there were no great OVA’s this year.

TV Series #5: Nodame Catabile: Finale

It had both the best moments and dullest moments from the entire Nodame Cantabile franchise. The boring earlier episodes that focused on the side characters to the detriment of the main two were replaced halfway through by the greatest scenes I’ve ever seen Nodame and Chiaki together in. I love those two. Absolutely love them and as depressing as it is to say farewell to them, I’m delighted I got to see over 40 episodes of their relationship.

Movie #5: The Disappearence of Haruhi Suzumiya

Admittedly there’s a huge gap between the top 5 movies and anything else that came out this year, so Haruhi had rather little competition for 5th spot. That said, this was still a pretty darn good movie. Way longer than it needed to be, but the way it captured Kyons anxiety and the inherent feeling of wrongness he felt from his surrounding was carefully and expertly done. I felt as uncomfortable as Kyon did, even though he was doing nothing more than pacing around a table. Anything that can make drawn out paces around the town as absorbing as this movie did deserves a hell of a lot of credit.

TV Series #4: Tatami Galaxy

I’m not quite as infatuated by this anime as my fellow Yuasa-phile elitist buddies are. It has more unnecessary animation gimmicks than even anything Shinbo has produced. The speed talking is just frustrating and the plot goes off on random tangents that are unnecessary more often than not. But still, this anime is fantastic. The writing is god-tier in intelligence and, despite some of the gimmickry getting annoying, there were other moments that blew me away. Ozu manifesting himself out of the shadows in each episode. The end of episode 2 when I copped onto the painful reset message. But most of all, episode 10 and the discovery of the Tatami Galaxy.

Movie #4: Eden of the East: Paradise Lost

Still not quite as good as the TV series but a massive improvement on the first movie, Paradise Lost was the finale to the Eden of the East franchise. It’s also a movie I’m come to appreciate more over time as the messages and ideas thrown out by the movie have really made me think. It answered the questions it raised not with resounding optimism and blind faith but with mature possible conclusions. There is no obvious solution to the NEET problem in Japan, nor the dissatisfied youth. Paradise Lost gave us a possible solution through bizarre but strangely believable means that could only be achieved by the movies charismatic lead.

TV Series #3: Jellyfish Princess

This had second place until the last episode bumped it down a notch or two, but this was still such a fun little series. Yet another Josei series that impresses, a genre with painfully few additions, so thank you Noitamina for hosting the few that have aired over the past few years. Thank you Brains Base for making this awesome show. Thank you Prime Minister for being such a nutcase. Thank you Benz man and your disregard for everything bar your precious cars. Thank you Kuranouske for making me doubt my sexuality…urrm, well, maybe not much thanks for that….

Movie #3: Break Blade 1 and 2

It’s still rather baffling to me why these aren’t more popular. This is the goddam mecha anime we’ve been hankering for for the last 2-3 years! Maybe it’s for true mecha fans only. I wouldn’t have really considered myself a real mecha fan before Break Blade, but the golems in Break Blade make me drool. The way they clunk about like real machines, awkward and cumbersome. They take real damage, chunks get smashed out of their armour, pilots are uncomfortable argh man, I love them! Give me moar mecha~!

TV Series #2: Durarara!!

2010 was the year of Durarara. No other anime made quite as much an impact as it did. Shizuo’s flying vending machines, Izaya’s shot lived hobby of phone stomping, Celty’s moe pajamas, Shinra’s ability to induce love to hate amongs the viewers, it was such a good show.Yes, it was never as good as its spiritual predecessor, Baccano, but that’s like saying a blowdrob from Megan Fox isn’t as good as one from Scarlett Johanson. They’re still both damn awesome! Brains Base again; if it wasn’t for some nutters under a bridge, this year would have been all yours.

Movie #2: Redline

Cheating with this one, since the dvd doesn’t come out until next year. But this was the year I saw Redline in the cinema and hot damn was it ever an exhillerating experience. So colorful and energetic, I don’t think I’ve ever seen another anime do what it does and I doubt anything attempting to copy the style will ever match the levels this movie managed. It’s really an experience, it’s very difficult to put into words. Get ready to have your eyes orgasm when this comes out on dvd in 2011.

TV Series #1: Arakawa Under the Bridge

I know this is far from the most popular choice for anime of the year and will probably be a forgotten gem many years down the line. But I love Arakawa. Loved every part of it’s perfectly constructed story. It’s absurdist comedy at its best, but not because it was funny though. Yes it was funny, but that wasn’t what made it great. It used the absurdist comedy for a purpose. The absurdity had a reason. It broke down the main characters view of the world, leaving him baffled and empty at exactly the halfway mark, and rebuilt his mind in a different logic sphere, finishing off with one of the most perfectly rounded endings ever in anime. Just remember there isn’t a second season. Just a spin-off.

Movie #1: Lagann-hen

Nothing beats Lagann-hen though. Lagann-hen is everything that is good about Gurren Lagann. The poor parts are cut out so and the drawn out scenes are shortened into this perfect streamlined movie. Technically just a compilation movie, I’d go as far as to say this is better than the TV series ever managed to be. You shouldn’t leap into this straight after you watch the TV series though. Watch this 2-3 years after you’ve seen the TV series and reignite the passion all over again. Or create a new fan. Either is cool.

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  1. luffyluffy
    Posted January 4, 2011 at 12:42 am | Permalink

    Lagann-Hen was the first movie I downloaded in 1080p.

    So worth all that memory

  2. hikaru
    Posted January 4, 2011 at 3:11 am | Permalink

    Nino’s face looks kinda scary in that picture, like she’s leering at Ric or something… I have yet to watch a lot of the stuff on this list apart from Arakawa, Durarara and Kuragehime. I really want to watch the Haruhi, Gurren Lagann and Eden of the East movies as well as Tatami Galaxy but haven’t managed to get my hands on them yet (partially as I am waiting to buy the legal releases of most of em).

    • Scamp
      Posted January 4, 2011 at 8:39 pm | Permalink

      Tatami Galaxy was streaming legally by Funimation. I dunno if they still have it, it’s not available in my country, but it’s worth checking their website to see if it is. It might never get released on dvd so it’s worth going now and seeing if it’s available

      • hikaru
        Posted January 5, 2011 at 9:09 am | Permalink

        Haha, yeah I live in Australia so Funimation’s streams are not available to me either. But Siren Visual (an Australian company) announced that they’ve licensed both Tatami Galaxy and House of Five Leaves (amazing right?) so I’m gonna wait till it’s released =D

  3. Posted January 4, 2011 at 4:12 am | Permalink

    I’m envious of the fact that you got to see anime movie in the cinema.

  4. Posted January 4, 2011 at 5:53 am | Permalink

    As I scrolled down the post, I was pretty surprised to find Disappearance at 5th Movie. Never saw Break Blade and never heard of Redline, but Lagann-hen at #1? I can live with that.

    I watched Paradise Lost with my roommate a few months ago, and we both agreed that it was total shit. The buildup was great, but it had an ending that fizzled out worse than Durarara!!.

    Also yay, Arakawa!

    • Scamp
      Posted January 4, 2011 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

      The ed to Eden was the best damn part! The start was the same lame that the first movie had, but the second half actually answered the questions it raised. Plus it answered who Mr.Outside was and gave you the question on a silver platter that Eden of the East was touting from the start: How would you save the country?

      Also man, I am NOT a haruhi fan. Dunno why you’d expect it higher

      • Posted January 4, 2011 at 9:39 pm | Permalink

        I’ll admit that Mr. Outside ended up being a pretty cool character, but he wasn’t enough to make up for stuff like the moe Juizes. That was the second movie, right? Maybe I’m getting the two confused, since I watched them one after the other.

        On Haruhi: Okay, my bad. I’ve been out of the aniblogging circle for too long. In trying to find a haruhi post in your old posts, I came across your ignite video. Er… nice hat.

  5. karry
    Posted January 4, 2011 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    “Josei series that impresses”
    No it doesnt.

    “Lagann-hen is everything that is good about Gur­ren Lagann.”
    And it wasnt that much.

    • mcm38
      Posted January 4, 2011 at 8:51 am | Permalink

      Have to agree on Josei. It certainly was entertaining but not impressing. The impressing level would only go to Arakawa and Durarara. Lagann-hen was super tengen toppa giga drill breaker- tastic entertainment rather than being impressive.

  6. Posted January 4, 2011 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    Must watch Red Line now….

  7. Fai D Fluorite
    Posted January 4, 2011 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

    How about Fate Stay Night:Unlimited Blade Works?

    • Scamp
      Posted January 4, 2011 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

      Haven’t watched the TV series so I have no opinion

  8. Strabo
    Posted January 4, 2011 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

    Did you not see the King of Thorn movie? I really liked it, and am constantly suprised by how little chatter there is about it.

    My opinion might be colored by the manga, though, which I love.

    • Scamp
      Posted January 4, 2011 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

      Was it even subbed? I saw one version but it was apperently a terrible sub by one guy who translated it from a Chinese sub

      • Posted January 5, 2011 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

        It’s out in Germany, so it must be at least subbed in german xD

  9. Edvardaz
    Posted January 4, 2011 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

    you still have to watch Shiki…

  10. Posted January 4, 2011 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

    Well it has been around 2-3 years since I last watched TTGL…. so maybe I really should give Lagann-hen a shot.

    I fear that I’ll be caught up in the Gurren-dan again though lol

  11. rincewind
    Posted January 7, 2011 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    Woah, I havent watched any of those.
    What I remember from 2010… K-on!!, HighSchool of the Dead, Sora no Woto… and of course, Legend of Koizumi. Gah, I want to see more animated Koizumi!!!! ><
    And for movies… I finally watched the Macross Frontier movie… like the series let me drooling and asking for more. :D

  12. dontwannatype
    Posted January 12, 2011 at 1:51 am | Permalink

    You’re the first blogger (that I saw) to appreciate Arakawa Under the Bridge this much. I love you. :D *tears of joy* At least I know I’m not the only one loving it.

  13. maddzero
    Posted January 31, 2011 at 1:49 am | Permalink

    I read your stuff pretty regularly and havent seen you mention it yet so I’m just hoping you didn’t miss Issac and Miria’s cameos in Durarara!

  14. Posted February 29, 2012 at 1:40 am | Permalink

    I was disappointed in the first Eden of the East film, but it looks like the second one is worth picking up. I enjoyed The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya as well, even with the length I though they did a great job (better than the entire second season put together). I’ll have to look into the other three and hope to add to the best anime movies at http://www.filmcrave.com/list_genre_movie.php?genre=Anime

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