So, I did a Top 12 list of anime 2012 for Kiddtic’s Aniblogger Choice Anime Awards. However, I’m not quite done in sharing some of the best anime I’ve watched in 2012. See, I’m basically a neophyte when it comes to watching anime, as before last year, I maybe caught two or three shows online, and this didn’t count the shows I was watching on Adult Swim (which weren’t that many). I was not very good at prioritizing time (and to a degree I’m still not; but I’m getting better, I swear!). However, over the whole year, I managed to catch a number of anime that turned out to be absolute favorites for me, and also ended up re-watching some stuff too; so, I guess I better share it with you guys!
I didn’t hear anything about this work until I saw it online, and available to watch. Needless to say, I didn’t know what to expect. But watched it I did, and I enjoyed just about everything Joe’s crew ended up going through — also, Dongo’s still the man.
Grave of The Fireflies
My list would definitely feel quite hollow if I did not include a work I watched early in the year, Grave of The Fireflies. I obviously have heard many things about the anime film, but of course, even I didn’t know what to expect. Let’s just say after that I was definitely feeling pretty down. Amazingly I did not cry (but I was definitely touched), which a lot of people who have watched this anime have claimed to do. Let me give you a warning though: it’s best to only watch this once. The second time didn’t seem to resonate with me, so take a good hour and some minutes of your time and choose to watch it either dubbed or subbed, and let this film be put to rest after that.
The Secret World of Arrietty
Another Ghibli film makes the list, but this time, here’s one that’s a bit more recent (and not so heavy), and one of the best films that came out in America in 2012. Based off The Borrowers novel, the story presented in Arrietty is pretty light compared to other Ghibli works, but because of it, I think it made the film shine even brighter, especially on the big screen. I got a kick out of the anime, and if you got the money, you should definitely consider buying the BD/DVD of it!
An anime I attempted to watch this time was Rainbow. Kuuki reviewed it positively in her column, and Sweetpea had been badgering me to watch it too, as she loved the anime as well. Despite two people almost forcing me to watch it, I didn’t watch it until the summer. Let’s just say it was about time. Some may see Rainbow as overly dramatic at some points, but based on how the series presented itself, it was not a problem. But even bothering to focus on that, I was mostly curious what would happen to our main characters –Rokurouta (Anchan), Mario, Noboru, Ryuuji, Mansaku, Tadayoshi, and Joe — as they attempted to deal with prison life, and then how they adapted to freedom. Let’s just say it was enjoyable and great for the rest of its run.
Puella Magi Madoka Magica
It took this year for me to finally watch it, but I did watch Winter 2011′s acclaimed series, Puella Magi Madoka Magica. Let’s just say since I’m in the business for looking for something interesting when it comes to anime, Madoka pretty much delivered on that front, and as dark as it got, I ended up running through the whole series in one day. I don’t know how I did it either. Whatever the case, it definitely provided a lot of thinking, but also a work I could enjoy. This was definitely a highlight for my year.
And so, a reprieve on Redline. If you read that review, you probably would have noticed that I thought, at best, it was something everyone should see because the visuals are so distinct, but otherwise it wasn’t exactly something I would re-watch over and over again like Summer Wars or Tokyo Godfathers. But I then brought this over to the anime club for them to see. Watched on big screen and in movie like seats, I was all in. I don’t know why, but the thrill of the racing forced me into my seat, and never let me go until the end. It is now something I just want to watch over and over again, and if you were skeptical about Redline before — don’t be. It’s really good.
Croisèe In A Foreign Labyrinth
Another reprieve of sorts, but this is a perfect example of a show that was stuck in my On-Hold list because there were other shows I wanted to turn my attention to, and this was not up to snuff. I was really bored the first time I watched Croisèe last year. However, for reasons unbeknownist to me, I decided to not completely drop it for good. It was a good decision, because in watching it all the way, I enjoyed it immensely. Whether or not it was historically accurate or not, the only thing I can say is from Claude and Yune’s interactions to some high class history to the music, I liked this anime way more than I ever thought I would. I would definitely implore you if you gave up on this show to consider watching it again. If for nothing other than to see moè Yune. I think.
Gall Force: Eternal Story
Another anime that I had brought the DVD a long time ago for undisclosed reasons. Like Croisèe, I watched this as part of Anispring 2012. And I really enjoyed watching Gall Force. Featuring space warfare, a girl cast, and solid music, it definitely is a work that made me want to look for the other parts to this series. It’s probably something you won’t find very easily, but if you can, watch it. It’s pretty fun.
The only true new anime that aired in 2012 on this list, Space Brothers just resonated with me in a special way. I can only blame Mutta for this being the case. That and the other characters. And the idea of getting into space. I must be turning into a space freak! Whatever the case, I listed this as #1 on my ACAA for a reason, so if you haven’t checked it out, you definitely should try and get on that!
Lastly, I think by default this had to be on the list. It was a favorite when it was airing last year, and needless to say, I was pretty sad that it stopped airing this April. Little did I realize that it would return for the fall season…with a lot of re-airing episodes. But clearly, Sunrise needed to animate the Kintama arc. That arc alone is worth the price of admission. Just comedy gold. And for my favorite anime of 2012, surely Gintama needed to be on this list.
So enough of my list: I know you all watched a bunch of anime this year that you fell in love with. Don’t you all have a few to share?