Anime you haven’t watched but everyone else has

this is one of the many

Everyone has these shows that you’ve heard of but haven’t around watching them for god knows what reasons. Just about everyone talks about them and reference to them. Basically their existence is almost known to the whole world EXCEPT to you. Why? Because you haven’t watched them!

Let’s start with some of these shows that I haven’t had the pleasure (or lack of) of picking up and also some potential shows that I’ll try to pick up in this summer. The power of free stuff, fansubs, and the internet commands YOU.

Darker than Black “In Tokyo, an impenetrable field known as “Hell’s Gate” appeared ten years ago. At the same time, psychics who wield paranormal powers at the cost of their conscience also emerged. Hei is one of the most powerful of these psychic agents, and along with his blind associate, Yin, works for one of the many rival agencies vying to unlock the mysteries of Hell’s Gate”.

One of the most prominent ones out there and with the highest probability of me picking it up probably in this summer than any others. DTB sounds like the show that would appeal to me on different levels but surprisingly I haven’t gotten around watching it. Action, mystery, drama? The only thing stopping me is the large amount of negative comments about the second season.

dennou coil – “Eleven years after the introduction of internet-connected, augmented reality eyeglasses and visors, Yūko Okonogi moves with her family to Daikoku City, the technological center of the emerging half-virtual world. Yūko joins her grandmother’s “investigation agency” comprised of children equipped with virtual tools and powerful metatags. She quickly crosses paths with Yūko Amasawa, an expert hacker of the virtual environment, as Amasawa relentlessly seeks to “unlock” the mystery of a computer virus that emerges from an inaccessible corrupted space.”

Sounds like serious business being interestingly serious. I don’t see why I haven’t watched this show yet. It has a deep premise and promises plenty of character development. Also I already have 8.3G of DC goodness on my harddrive.

Kaiba – “It is now possible to store memory data, so that the death of your body is not actually “death”. As memories are stored in databanks, they can be “transferred” to new bodies. Because so-called “memory trading” now occurs, it is now possible to steal memories and illegally alter them. Society has fallen apart as authority has become lost and stagnant. One day, a man awakens in a ruined room. His name is Kaiba. He has no memories, but he does have a pendant with a picture of an unknown woman inside […]

Kaiba is discussed there and over there then over there and over there. Pretty  much everywhere except here. Basically everyone who has watched Kaiba had something to say about the show at some point. That’s a great indication that it’s a show that gives plenty of things to talk about or that no one agrees on the same thing. Back then when I first started it I put Kaiba on hold but I mentioned that I would pick it up again so now it’s the chance to finally finish it and brush aside any remaining little problems I may have for the character designs in Kaiba. One thing I’m sure of is that Kaiba is sure to provide with something to ponder about.

Hayate the Combat Butler!  – “[…] 16-year-old Hayate is really down on his luck. His unemployed parents are good-for-nothings who waste the money they have on gambling. One day, his parents have racked up a huge gambling debt that they had to sell Hayate to the yakuza for the value of his organs. In a desperate attempt to avoid that fate, Hayate decides to become a “bad guy” and kidnap someone to be held for ransom, but his efforts to do so are mistaken as a confession of love by the girl he targets.”

That is some disturbing opener for the story. I think I stopped laughing at the selling people organs part which I never found that funny. A 50eps for the 1st season then another 25 for the second season of the show? That’s a LOT of eps.  To be frank, I’m not eager to pick up shows with large numbers of eps as with that large number of eps I expect enough balance in the story to keep me entertained to the end. Does Hayate have that? I don’t know but Hayate is so well known that you feel like it’s one of those shows that you have to watch and find out what’s so great about them at some point. Also I may just watch it so see what the Hinagiku fascination is all about, which I’m fairly interested in. Also it has Watamoto as narrator. Tough to say no to THAT.

Bokurano – “During a summer camp, 15 children, 8 males and 7 females, find a grotto by the sea. Deep within they discover working computers and some electronic equipment, and later the owner, a man called Kokopelli. Kokopelli claimed to be a programmer working on a brand new game, in which a large robot has to defend the Earth against fifteen alien invasions. He persuades the children to test the game and sign a contract. All but one of them signs, barely a moment later they mysteriously awaken on the shore believing what happened was just a dream.”

Robots that defend the earth against aliens… Last time I heard that one it was plain heroically cheesy as cheetos but that won’t stop me from giving Bokurano a chance.  On another note, I always get Bokurano and Dennou Coil mixed up.

Summer Wars – “When timid eleventh-grader and math genius Kenji Koiso is asked by older student and secret crush Natsuki to come with her to her family’s Nagano home for a summer job, he agrees without hesitation. Natsuki’s family, the Jinnouchi clan, dates back to the Muromachi era, and they’ve all come together to celebrate the 90th birthday of the spunky matriarch of the family, Sakae. That’s when Kenji discovers his “summer job” is to pretend to be Natsuki’s fiancé and dance with her at the birthday celebration. As Kenji attempts to keep up with Natsuki’s act around her family, he receives a strange math problem on his cell phone which, being a math genius, he can’t resist solving. As it turns out, the solution to the mysterious equation causes a hijacking of the social networking site through which most of the world’s social and business traffic flows.”

Movies like SW receive huge attention from the blogsphere then again I think most subbed movies do. Right now, I’m part of the minority of people that have yet to pick this one up. I don’t have any good excuses why I haven’t watched it yet.  I’m not  really into movies that much and the size of the movie was three more times that any movies I’ve watched. It was a pain to DL it. Is summer wars as good as they claim? Probably.

Tears of Tiara – “In a world resembling the middle-age. A girl, Riannon, is set to be sacrificed to appease a resurrected demon lord, Arawn. As her brother Arthur attempts to rescue her, Arawn defies those who resurrected him and frees Riannon from her captors, which leads to Riannon admiring him. This eventually leads to a party of companions being assembled for adventure, with Arawn acting as the leader.”

I cheated and I watched the first 2 episodes the other day. I wasn’t that impressed by it. This “adventure” shows can be hit or miss a great majority of the time, even more when the characters don’t always appeal to you. In this case, I was waiting for an interesting character to show up that would scream “watch this show!” Tears of Tiara seems like it’s a fine” show but I don’t know if “fine” will cut it for regular 20 something show. However I already torrented it.. so why not watch it until I figure whether it’s worth it or not.

Also, yes, the other reason why I picked it up is because Studio White Fox which is in charge of Katanagatari is involved in this one. So far I haven’t seen the slightest sign of their work on ToT.

H20 Footprints in the sand – “Takuma Hirose is a blind young male high school student, though the cause for his blindness is undetermined. In order to heal his medical condition, he is sent to live in a village with his uncle. There, he meets several girls, three of which stand out more than any of the others. They are Hayami Kohinata, Hinata Kangura, and Otaha. Otaha temporarily heals his blindness and Hirose uses his sight to help others. He finds out that, for some reason, Hayami Kohinata is hated in the village, and he tries his best to help her out. Meanwhile, many sad secrets unfold in the village…”

This show sounds like a company like KEY would be behind it, but actually it isn’t. Based on the premise I’m getting an Air TV vibe without having to watch it. That’s great and not so great.  Great if you liked Air and bad if you hate it. Harem/drama  isn’t something I pick up every day but sometimes I end up liking it. Most of the harem shows that I watch  are more based on laughs and any seriousness isn’t that demanded. Hopefully, this won’t pull any bad surprises at the end.

Sketchbook ~full color’S~ “Sora Kajiwara is a shy girl who enjoys drawing in her sketchbook. She joins the Art Club at her school, and meets many colorful and eccentric people.”

That’s some short summary. How descriptive and right to the point, if there was a point to begin with. Anyway, the show screams Hidamari Sketch which if you mention one show you usually mention the other. As someone interested in art in general I’ve come to enjoy HS (although it rarely deals with art) and the simplicity of it. That’s why I’m interested in seeing how different both shows are. Although at first glance I can already detect what’s so different about them. For example Shinbou isn’t involved and Shaft isn’t either. Ok, that was already a given but you know what i mean.

I think it’s best that I should not expect Sketchbook to be a carbon copy of another show.

Legend of the Galactic Heroes “For decades, the Galactic Empire has been locked in an interstellar war with the Free Planets Alliance, a conflict that involves thousands of spaceships and millions of soldiers on both sides. Two new commanders enter the conflict with great hopes: Imperial Admiral Reinhard von Lohengramm and the FPA’s Yang Wen-Li. As they deal with superiors and subordinates, maneuver through complicated political arrangements, plot strategies, and win battles, each will be tested, and ultimately, changed, by the reality of war.”

The best show EVA! Right? Right!? If you’re a huge LoGH fan you better skip this paragraph now and move to the next one.

You probably won’t often run into people who criticize LoGH even if you look hard enough. MAL is pretty much dominated by LoGH fanboys raving about this show being number 1 and how totally shitty anime is today, which I’ll partially agree about some of the crappiness in the industry as of late, but I wouldn’t say that everything up to this point was mediocre. Frankly, I don’t know how about feel about this show until I watch it AND finish it. Right now, the idea that I have is that this is a good (probably amazing) show that old fans happened to put in a pedestal and raise it to the level of masterpiece because they really liked “how anime used to be good back then”. If I ever come to dislike the show it would be in great part due to old elite diehard fans that cling to old shows and trash talk everything else. Sorry, but it’s hardly possible to not question a show’s quality when arguments such as LoGH > everything are supposed to win me over.

On a separate note, that’s a lot of OVAS.

Millennium Actress – “When Studio Gin’ei commissions filmmaker Gen’ya Tachibana to make a documentary in commemoration of its 70th anniversary, he travels to a secluded mountain lodge to interview the idol of his youth, the enigmatic Chiyoko Fujiwara, who was the studio’s leading lady from the 1930s until the 1960s. As Chiyoko reminisces about her life, Tachibana and his cameraman suddenly find themselves on a rich and dazzling journey through time. Chiyoko’s films and personal memories intertwine with present events and stretch the boundaries of reality.”

I didn’t know it until now but I’m a fan of director Kon Satoshi and his work. Not a single movie or anime that he plus Madhouse have been involved have ever failed me to amused me. That’s not very easy to accomplish. They do really have everything. All enjoyable movies with gripping stories that make me want to watch what else they have to offer. Madhouse+Kon Satoshi in charge are the equivalent of what Ghibli movies are to me. It’s clear that I’m expecting Millennium Actress to be another big winner for me.

Rozen Maiden – “Due to a deep trauma at school Sakurada Jun has refused to return. He spends his time in his room, surfing the web and ordering anything that takes his fancy, only to return the items just before payment is due. One day, he finds a web site that tells him to put his order in a drawer of his desk. He does so thinking it to be a joke, only to find that the letter disappears and a strange package arrives soon afterwards. It contains an exquisite doll, that, when wound, comes to life. She treats him as a servant of little worth, but over time helps him come to grips with his fears and in the life-or-death fights that soon follow her arrival.”

I’ll be frank I do not understand Rozen Maiden’s popularity. It’s not that this show comes up in heated discussions or that it comes as a references to other show. It’s not like I see huge editorials about the depth of the story and characters. It’s not like RM is one of those huge classics from the 90’s that everyone respects because they need to. Rozen Maiden is just popular for some reason. I feel like there is a huge gap in years of secret discussions of why RM is  so popular that I don’t know about. All I see are dolls fighting amongst themselves and a weak main character. At first glance I fail to see what’s so great about that. Really. Is it really the desu part? I don’t know what I’d respond if I were to be asked what I’m watching. Uh, a show about talking dolls?

Ouran High School Host Club – “Fujioka Haruhi won a scholarship to attend Ouran High, a school reserved for the rich and prestigious. Despite what other students may think of her, Haruhi cares little for physical appearances or the fact that she’s a commoner. Unfortunately for Haruhi, her high school days took a turn when she stumbled upon the Host Club, a group of guys who use their specific traits and charms to entertain the women of Ouran High […]”

Hey, it’s Haruhi! No, it’s the other one. That one that I don’t know about. Yeah, I purposely stopped the summary at that part because it was more interesting that way. Just everyone fan girl out there must’ve watched OHC. That would explain the high rating for one thing. This show is almost regarded as masterpiece among the shoujo fans and I have a general idea why. As for me, everything about this fabulous show does not interest me in the bit but doesn’t mean it’s a bad show. It’s just hard to have any interest for a show that I’m probably not part of the audience they were aiming at.

5 centimeters per second – “Tohno Takaki and Shinohara Akari, two very close friends and classmates, are torn apart when Akari’s family is transferred to another region of Japan due to her family’s job. Despite separation, they continue to keep in touch through mail. When Takaki finds out that his family is also moving, he decides to meet with Akari one last time. As years pass by, they continue down their own paths, their distance slowly growing wider and their contact with one another fades. Yet, they keep remembering one another and the times they have shared together, wondering if they will have the chance to meet once again […]”

No idea why it’s called that way. 5CPS is another movie I keep hearing about but never watched it. The premise sounds interesting and bit meh. I’m completely unfamiliar with the studio handling them so I can’t even comment on that.

Shakugan no Shana  – “Sakai Yuuji, a high school student who expected his normal life to last forever, is dead. When he was on his way home he witnessed a shocking view as the world suddenly froze: people were engulfed by blue flames and a monster resembling a large doll swallowed them. Just as the monster prepared to consume Yuuji, a sword-wielding girl in black attire with flaming red eyes and hair that burns like embers saved him from the monster. The girl called herself a “Flame Haze” who hunts the “Guze no Tomogara”, creatures from another world. As Yuuji noticed a blue flame in his chest, she called him a “Torch”, a temporary replacement, saying that the “real” Yuuji’s existence had already ended. Unfazed, Yuuji befriended the strange girl, named her “Shana”, and joined her fight against Tomogara and other Flame Hazes.”

Pretty much they tell us what the first episode is about. Awesome. Actually, I’m an undercover tsundere hater that’s why I don’t usually pick up tsundere shows. even though that in itself might be a sign of tsunderism. Shakugan no Shana sounds like one of those hype shows and fav by Kugimiya Rie fans and tsundere lovers all over the world.  That’s my limited take on a show that I’ve only watched 2 eps and didn’t find it that life changing. Tsundere loli? useless male lead? J.C. Staff? Where have I heard this before? SnS sounds like a why not watch it show rather than stay the hell out of it type of show. Also I heard the 2nd season sucks which does not look very good, but isn’t it always like that? Yeah, I’ll probably watch it at some point.

Eureka Seven – “Renton Thurston is a 14-year-old boy who lived with his mechanic grandfather in a backwater town. Every day he dreamed of being with the mercenary “Light Finding Operation (LFO)” aircraft pilot group “Gekkostate” and riding “Trapar” particle waves– a sport called “reffing”– with their charismatic leader Holland, especially when faced with his father’s acclaimed past or his grandfather’s desire to protect him. When a young girl named Eureka […]

Well, Bones is behind this and the author is also responsible for Deadman Wonderland! This “young male leads coming of age” then ‘”EPIC stuff happens in their journey”  isn’t innovate but regardless very enjoyable. There are even TTGL comparisons are to be drawn even if I haven’t watched the show. That’s not bad. Why would I pick it up? There aren’t enough Mecha shows in my list for one thing so E7 would be a nice addition but 50 eps? That’s a lot to ask of me. Shows like FMA are one of the few shows (and shounen) with 50 eps that I’ve watched AND enjoyed. I’m hesitant to believe that E7 will grab me enough for the whole 50 eps but the high ratings make me have faith in it.

Major/Cross Game – “baseball anime”

Most accurate description. Almost as good as MAL reviews after the first episodes of a show. I often dismiss sports shows because I’m not that crazy about them in the first place. This is not to say that they’re bad but not something that usually catches my interest. Of course, with a different formula they can easily turn this around and accomplish this. Major has like, what, six seasons and counting? Cross Game, on the other hand, appears to only one season of 50 eps. A big number, but not impossible to finish if I’m certain that it has a definite ending unlike Major which I don’t think I’d pick it up due to having to keep up with so many seasons which I’m very bad at. Cross Game gets the upper hand because also a certain prehistoric blogger mentions it in more than one occasion.

Seto no Hanayome – “Michishio Nagasumi’s life couldn’t be anymore normal. In an odd twist of events, during his summer vacation he ends up almost drowning in the sea. Luckily, the cute mermaid Seto San appears to save him. However, San is from a yakuza mermaid family and according to their law, if a human is to catch sight of a mermaid, either he or the mermaid must die. The only other way is for Nagasumi to be taken in as a family member, marrying San. In attempts to save both of their lives, Nagasumi asks for San’s hand in marriage. Nagasumi’s summer vacation reaped more then what he would expect, as he must now protect San from others finding her secret out.”

Both Gonzo and AIC studios are behind SnH, I’m curious to see how that would turn out.  Mermaidman yakuza family? I sure haven’t heard of that one before! SnH is another of those shows that is highly rated no matter where I go and usually who I ask.  A combination of Comedy, parody, and school usually catches my interest so I don’t see a problem here. I don’t know how hilarious the show will be after a few eps.  Will the jokes get repetitive after 13 eps? Will the twists will the same and how far do I trust Gonzo to deliver like old times? Like, really? I think that was B.C.

Nodame Cantabile – “During his 4th year at Japan’s top music university, Chiaki happens to meet Noda Megumi; or as she refers to herself, Nodame. On the surface, she seems to be an unkempt girl with no direction in life. However, when Chiaki hears Nodame play the piano for the first time, he is in awe at the kind of music she plays. To Chiaki’s dismay, Nodame moves into the apartment next to his and finds out that she is head over heels in love with him. Nodame Cantabile tells the story of Chiaki and Nodame, as they not only learn to deal with each other, but learn lessons from one another as they strive for the top of the musical world.”

Without having to listen to it I get the feeling that NC is one of J.C. Staff better works with no indication of being a hype show. This is the type of show that I should’ve finished it when I had the chance but unfortunately didn’t. It’s a pity that I was never able to pick up before the second season came out otherwise I could’ve said something about the show. Now the show is over (I think that’s the case) I can watch it to my heart content and hope that it’ll be music to my ears. It might even go down as one of the favorites of the shows I haven’t watched yet.

Haibane renmei – “A dream of falling from the sky…and then birth. Rakka is born from a large cocoon into the Old Home, greeted by a group of females with small wings on their backs and shining halos above their heads. Soon Rakka’s own wings grow, a halo is placed on her head and she is told that she must work in the nearby town of Grie. She soon realizes that the town and the entire world they live in are confined behind the Wall, a tall, impenetrable wall that none except the mysterious Toga are allowed to exit.”

A tall impenetrable wall covering the rest of the world? People with halos over their heads? Everything sounds so surreal.  I haven’t even watched the show and I’m already interested in this. Not to mention that several posts about HR tells me that this show is not to be taken lightly. Also I want to find out why it was so many times  it wa mentioned when Sora no Woto was airing. Hopefully, HnR will be less moe and with more depth.

Gundam SEED – “C.E. 71: In the midst of war between the Naturals (OMNI) and Coordinators (ZAFT), a unit from ZAFT is dispatched to hijack the Earth Alliance’s newly developed mobile suits on the neutral colony of Heliopolis. Orb Civilian Coordinator Kira Yamato attends the technical college on Heliopolis. After ZAFT hijacks 4 of the 5 mobile suits, Kira stumbles upon the last one, Strike, forced to pilot it to save his and his friend’s lives. During this confusion, Kira also reunites with his childhood Coordinator friend, Athrun Zala, who ironically turns out to be a ZAFT soldier and one of the hijackers at Heliopolis. Having control of Strike, Kira joins the Earth Alliance boarding the ship known as Archangel, to protect his friends while despairing over becoming the enemy of his childhood friend and people.”

If you have watched Code Geass then you must’ve heard of GS reference and about trainwrecks, betrayals, keikakus. and other whatevers. Why would I pick it up? I’m not a gundam fan as you know, actually my only knowledge of the Gundam world is limited to Gundam 00, which I liked. Overall I think CG vibes are enough to make me pick up SEED. I know that I will be entertained for sure.

Almost most accurate list of shows I haven’t watched yet but everyone else has. Not too bad for the never-ending backlog any anime fan has. For a list of potential and not-so-potential shows for the exciting Summer I’ll point you to  Summer 10 review.

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30 thoughts on “Anime you haven’t watched but everyone else has

  1. Excellent idea for a post and I think I share a lot of the same shows you have. The post title had me thinking of the fact I’ve never actually watched Death Note, but that fact has never really bothered me at all.

  2. Of the shows listed on here that I have seen that I would recommend:

    Darker than Black, 5 centimeters per second, Eureka Seven, Haibane renmei.

  3. I think Rozen Maiden became popular due to a 4chan meme…no really

    I had a longer comment but my computer ate it. So instead I’ll just reccomend Kaiba.

  4. Quite an interesting list. You’ve included several titles that I keep meaning to get to. Maybe I’ll get around to watching Kaiba or Dennou Coil this Summer.

    Of the shows you have listed that I HAVE seen, I would recommend Haibane Renmei, which is my favorite anime, and Millennium Actress.

    If you don’t like tsunderes then I can’t recommend Rozen Maiden. It actually has some interesting religious overtones, as the dolls ultimately are seeking a way to be re-united with their Creator. It also has good music and artwork. It is a weird combination of shonen fighting show, mixed with a harem rom-com.

  5. mm Let me me give a opinion of the animes I have seen so far from this list:

    H20: I haven’t watched air and I do not have to much about the argument so I don’t feel like watching anything. It remindme me somehow Higurashi boy with a lot of girls in a little town but it is too diferent to higurashi style. Also I didn’t know this show were such popular.

    Rozen Maiden: mm I watched first episode because it had Ali project op so I went curious and the story seemed interesting so I watched the 1st episode. Time after I bought all the manga 1st part. Cause anime and manga end being diferent from each other it is like I haven’t watched it cause most people followed just the anime. But I liked the manga it is not the best ting ever but it is interesting.

    Shana: I watched just 1st season. It was not very special really and I watched it when shounen were my favourite genre so I used to see a lot of shonen repetitive stuff and used to like it. I will see 2nd season someday in the future.

    Nodame: at the time anime went out I had a 1 volume manga of the mangaka. A bizarre collection of self-portrait drunken stories that I adore . On that manga there were some references of the seriuos manga of the mangaka the shoujo like one. Even at the end of the manga there is a years after prologue when she also talked that she was working on nodame manga at that moment. So I tried it even knowing it will not be the same. The 1st episode was far too boring. I would love to see that drunken stories in a anime someday .

    Haibane: Related to Lain is a must watch for me. what to say about it mm it has not too much moe so don’t worry.

    That’s all that I have seen. I use to dislike to follow series that everybody wants to see

    • Don’t bother with Shana second season. It’ll crash your views on the show, it sucks.

  6. Out of those, I’ve watched (and their sequels): Darker than Black, Hayate the Combat Butler!, Rozen Maiden, Ouran High School Host Club, 5 centimeters per second, Shakugan no Shana, Eureka Seven, Seto no Hanayome.

    5cm/s is an awesome movie, maybe the most beautiful one, but I personally liked “The Girl Who Leapt Through Time” a LOT more. You should watch that movie if you haven’t. I also don’t understand Rozen Maiden’s popularity, all it has is its Desu Desu girl, but the show itself ain’t that good. Seto no Hanayome is my favorite anime comedy, period. Eureka Seven is epic and one of my favorite animes of all time due to the amazing relationship that the two main characters have, and that you can feel and know they’re in love. Darker than Black has awesome battles, but the plot itself has decayed a lot after the first season. Shakugan no Shana season 1 was very good, but [red truth]season 2 was PURE CRAP.[/red truth]

    I’ve been intending to watch H20, but never had time. My list of “animes I want to watch that everyone has watched” includes H2O, Berserk!, Honey and Clover, Kanon, and possibly Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei. I of course want to watch other shows, but those are the shows everyone has watched and I haven’t. Oh, almost forgot. I haven’t finished watching Black Lagoon and Cowboy Bebop.

  7. That’s quite a diverse group of animes that you haven’t seen. I’ll toss my hat in for Summer Wars, because it’s definitely an interesting movie, and 5 cm/s just because I think that it’s Shinkai Makoto’s best work. Besides, if you watch that one then you pretty much don’t need to watch any of his other works, because they’re kind of all the same thematically :P.

    As for the bunches of animes, Haibane Renmei is a must watch. Out of the rest, Kaiba if you’re interested in that type of show, and Nodame Catabile as well. Darker than Black, Ouran, and Eureka Seven are just one more step down I feel. The rest you can pick through at your leisure. I would recommend LoGH, but it’s such a huge time drain that you might be better off starting elsewhere first.

    As for Rozen Maiden’s popularity… Your guess is as good as mine ^_^

    • It’s quite simple. Go to Google Images, and search simply for “Desu”. What you find is the reason for the show’s popularity.

  8. @Emperor J
    I’m glad that I watched Death Note, well read then watched. I don’t think this place would’ve gotten its name if it wasn’t thanks to it. Highly recommend in manga or in anime form.

    @crazydave
    One point to Darker than Black and counting.

    @Scamp
    It’s one of those shows that without a doubt I’ll finish this Summer so Kaiba it is.

    @Joojoobees
    Let’s finish Kaiba this summer!
    It’s nice to see that there is more to RM than that I originally thought.

    @moichispa
    Thanks for feedback on those shows that you’ve already finished. I’ll take it in consideration when I start organizing what I’ll pick.

    @ Sacchi
    I liked The Girl Who Leapt Through Time so I’m fine if 5CPS is similar to that. Not that glad to hear the those rumors about those 2nd seasons were true but red claim accepted. I’ll put special consideration on E7 and in SnH as you mentioned.

    SZS is a quirky and uh, an “interesting” show. I liked it but not many would (even though it’s so popular). If you watched the 1st season than the rest is basically the same. Also you’ll understand the “I’m in despair!” meme better. Oh yeah, there are a bunch of anime references like KyoAni shows, Higurashi, Code Geass, Haruhi, etc etc etc. There is even an episode where the Schrödinger’s cat theory is explained in a very peculiar way. Berserk! and Honey and Clover are shows gave high rating so I’d recommend them. Berserk is sure to mindreap when you’re done with the show you if you haven’t been spoiled. Mark_my_words. HaC is a must watch in my opinion.

    @Mystlord
    Another point for Kaiba, 5cm/p and Haibane Renmei. This is kinda proving that a great majority really have watched Kaiba and HR except for me. Time to put an end to that ;p

    Something ells me Hinagiku is going to rightfully be one of the highlights of this summer for me.

    • I love when shows MindRape me xD. I’ll watch Berserk as soon as possible then, thanks for the recommendations.

  9. Seriously, don’t bother with Seto no Hanayome. It’s the same as every other anime comedy made after Excel Saga. People do some “crazy wacky antics” that aren’t all that crazy or wacky and a character freaks out about how supposedly crazy and wacky the antics are. Watch Kaiba instead. Even if you don’t end up liking the show, you’ll never see anything else like it.

  10. Kaiba, DtB, Dennou Coil, Ouran HSHC, Summer Wars in that order. I have yet to catch 5cm/s despite it being a really good movie (and so I have been told over the past 4 years).

    Frankly Bokurano was pretty good for me but the manga fans were supposedly disappointed when they left the manga story at episode 10 or so. I believe Hayate got a little too much on the random down the stretch, though it could be a good comedy watch. But the shows I mention here other than 5cm/s all I have seen and can recommend very well. Then again it depends on your preference of what kind of anime you like and how deep you like them to be.

  11. I also haven’t watched those anime shows you listed above except for Darker than Black (Watch it. It’s the most amazing anime ever. Season 1 sucked but the second season was just.. bananas.), Rozen Maiden (THIS SHIT IS AWFUL. Don’t watch it.. except if you love moe characters and plotless shows), 5 Centimeters per Second (It’s a good movie that you can’t help but love it.) and Shakugan no Shana (lol shit. The most horrible anime ever).

  12. I think I haven’t watched most of these, too. All I can say is that Cross Game is better than Major. I really recommend it.

  13. Haibane is my favorite all time anime, and even the dub is very good. You can watch it in Japanese or English, and it’s great either way.
    Enjoyed DTB, Ouran, and inexplicably, Rozen Maiden. Watch them in Japanese, the dubs can be painful.
    Nodame is one of the funniest serious shows you’ll ever see. Noda is just too trippy. Best Asperger’s sufferer in anime.
    Hayate is great, like a mellow Excel Saga, or Pani Poni. Tons of cultural, game, music, and anime references, but they don’t skewer the butts of the jokes as much as Pani or Excel.
    Kaiba was great, but it left me feeling much the way I did after watching Lain. O_o
    Millenium Actress is timeless.
    Trash some of your study time, and watch ’em!

  14. Even if repeat what the other said here are my thoughts no your selection of anime under the premise what would I pick among those if I had to decide.

    Darken Then Black:
    If you don’t totally dislike shows dealing with people having supernatural abilities and who a are living in a strange twisted version of present Japan this is a must watch. Even if it has a lot of action it is more driven by its characters and themes, has IMO great pacing and an interesting, mysterious setting which gets reflected on by all this characters really well. It reminded me a lot of the way the GitC series place out with its combination of setting, action, character focus and occasional background stories thrown in to flesh out this people. But this only seasons 1 impression. Didn’t have the time to view the 2nd so i’m really skeptical if they can keep this quality up.

    dennou coil: Well, I have to say while this premise of (what is in essence) a slice of life show about kids dealing with augmented reality like some everyday toy sound like a really awesome idea, I found the execution really laking. I only saw like 6 or 8 episodes but think the show just was aimed to a younger audience. While it shows some kind of menace by some “corruption in the matrix chaos” scenario and its implications that kids are playing around in this “matrix” everyday it still didn’t come of as really threatening and believable to me, as most of the time the show is just a bunch of kids fooling around and dealing with their childish problems. Don’t know if this show picks up later on but I found this boring and going nowhere as I had expected a much darker and edgier interpretation of the setting. But perhaps I’m also mistaken.

    kaiba: If you are into VERY weird styled but totally thought provoking stuff watch this first. Even if calling style comical and the animation wacky is are big understatement its really fitting its mature themes and by giving a rather abstract impression it luckily does not distracting from the ultimate message of this show. And this show goes really far in exploring this idea that memories and thoughts of people in their world are just like a item you can pass around and all this strange implication of how this effects their world(s). (to name a more cruel example: a family selling “their past” for cash to avoid living an poverty)
    The way the show is presented oddly reminded me of “Kino’s Journeys” with its more of a PoV protagonist leaving room for the story and themes who is traveling to many “planet of hats” world (to use a fitting TVTropes analogy) and not-so-realistic animation (even if Kino is by far more “normal”).
    If you don’t know Kino’s Journeys just watch it of the same reasons :P (just replace this memories stuff with more general philosophical themes ^^)

    Hayate: The start is funny but I dropped this after some time as this more and more feels like the rom-com / slice-of-live version of any endless shounen anime. After some point the plot only seem to fool around with characters that never develop that much and overrely on word plays and really random shout outs to other animes (not THAT random as SHAFT shows or e.g. Lucky Star but also most of the time not THAT cleverly integrated). They are some wickedly funny episodes in between but as with most of this looong shows they are rare and the rest is more average plot of the day… never changing much at the status quo.
    The idea of a plot with a “wimpy” male servant and Kugimiya Rie as master also might ring a bell… but this show is not so tsundere centered as most of this setups so that it doesn’t gets annoying.
    In summary: This show is not bad (otherwise wouldn’t have watched 25+ episodes of it) but 52 episodes + 2nd season with another 26 episodes is just overkill for this rather shallow and generic plot idea. If they had compressed it to a 26 episode it may have been a good show but by stretching it out so much just feels like a waste of time. Also may not be a prime candidate for you if you intent to a complete view of a show in a timely fashion as this eats up a lot of time.
    I know all the Hayate fanboys/girls will lynch me for this summary but I’m more of a fan of more complex tales and engaging settings with much development then this “watch is for the habit” shows.

    Fitting to the last I’ll get to Shana: As one of the prime examples of the “wimpy hero” + Kugimiya Rie tsundere characters (which by now is sooo overused) this gets no recommendation as well. This show has a great beginning and interesting premise about a cruel direction the world is going but never really used it to good effects (besides justifying supernatural fights which still WERE dealt with quite well) and all this “will they or won’t they” relationship chaos with those 2 and all the other people get to deal with… OMG. This just wasted way to much screentime in the show. Also as all the other mentions the 2nd season is consider shit and as I heard the main problem is its mostly build out of fillers.
    So if you like this this tsundere love “drama” stories just watch Toradora. It has (next to) no action but deals with the romance stuff in a much more interesting fashion. Or just (re)watch Ranma 1/2 for all the lulz of making love polygon setups as complex and bizarre as possible. But just for the small chunk of good action climaxes Shana seems not really worth all this stuff in between.

    Bokurano: Don’t be mistaken by the description you found. This is NOT at its core a mecha show to save the world from aliens or anything. While the story may suggest it and their is a mecha and fights with it and everything fits the genre, all of this makes up quite a small part of the anime. Also you’re right that on first glance Bokurano sounds a bit like Dennou Coil with kids at the center of the story and a “videogame-like” (for the lake of better works) reality they are confronted with. But while DC seem kids friendly and warm in expression (as I concluded) with some underlying elements of (again kids friendly) horror, I cannot stress enough who much this fails to describe this show…. the same goes for your idea about cheesy action and heroism because of the mecha stuff.
    This is a really grim and mature story with really wicked twists and at its core a tale about this teenagers with are involved in this “game” and her problems with live and the values they see in it. (and when I say “game” think Umineko-style “funny funny” games ^^)
    But thats no surprise that many people take this the wrong way as the mangaka behind this is famous for this cynic and evil settings but always seem to start them of in a somehow clumsy ways. If you don’t believe me look out for reviews of his other much less know but rather infamous series Shadow Star Narutaru. The anime for this never got know that much (mostly because it was a really low budget production and never ended the manga story and got a much deserved 2nd season). But its also was really polarizing. Those that only watched the intro + 1st ep thought about it as a poor man’s Pokemon clone made for 8-year-olds but those who didn’t drop it by then call its the most wicked deconstruction of this premise in anime… putting this idea in a really realistically evil world and drawing conclusions from this I would call downright shocking and disturbing especially in those parts the anime didn’t cover anymore (and having watched stuff like Elfen Lied and Higurashi before Narutaru thats no small feat either). So whatever this guy touches something expect very cynic world views and “heroes” more cursed by their fate then anything and full of motifs showing mankind at its worse and everything ALWAYS getting worse in every way as the story progresses.
    Bokurano is much more “tame” in this department then Narutaru but fate isn’t nice to those teenagers either. So if you like your shows this ways definitively recommended.
    Also: The opening for this show is awesome really fitting the style of this show with its imaginary, lyrics and mood…. and it’s such an ear worm. ^^

    Millenium Actress: Thats an easy one. If you like Satoshi Kon you will like this show, as its more of his cool style. Even this description sounds really mundane its really spot on. This is a story of a live in retropective perhaps in the same way Forrest Gump is the story of a live. And his trademark seamless drifting between reality / dreams / fantasies etc. makes this a really beautiful film. Its not as dark / creepy as Paranoia Agent and Perfect Blue and its also not so mind screwy as Perfect Blue and Paprika but the way the parts with the interview, her film and her personal experiences seem to fuse more and more ofter the film give you more and more the idea that her films tell her story better then she ever could in words which I thought of as a brilliant idea to tell this story.

    Ouran High Host Club: Thats another easily misjudged anime. Yes, their is shoujo style stories everywhere and their are ridiculously rich pretty boys running around all the time trying to charm the also very rich ladys and yes, very idea of this host club invites to insert “if you know what I mean” very second sentence in every review BUT that shouldn’t stop you from watching this show.
    I guess the show got so immensely popular because besides being a good shoujo anime its also a really funny and cleverly written story which appeals you a male audience as well.
    The whole cast of characters is really likable even if the are full of all the bishounen tropes or perhaps especially because this combination of the looks and the riches make so a wickedly fun contract to this down-to-earth commoner Haruhi dealing with all this strange oddballs and all the irony in this. Also regarding this idea about fanservice: no matter what type of fanservice you expect from this show its really tame all around. It has more fun parodying all that is crazy fan girls swooning then actually showing real fanservice (if you don’t count all this style about rose-framed sparkling shots of the boys etc… but thats just part of this so-over-the-top-its-funny department of the story…. also there once WAS a discussion about sex… as bizarr as it may sound for this show ;P ).
    Also while all this guy seem like a collection of tropes this is in parts self-parody and those characters in the end are more complex then I imagined from a comedy show like this. It even gets its even gets a bit insightful with it themes of friendship and make some clever use of metaphors…. so its not so shallow either…. still not the point of this show…. its just a huge fun festival with some love, friendship and strange “school club live” mixed in.
    And its the only shoujo show that I would recommend to any anime fan regardless of gender. :P
    (I recommend watching 1 or 2 episodes.. if you like the comedy of them you will like the rest as well.)

    Nodame: Guess that is majorly overshadowed by personal preferences then anything. While the romance in this story show is nothing you sure haven’t seen before the great question for this show is, if you like the topic of classical music because the premise that all this characters are on a music school to later on make a career in an orchestra etc. combined with this focus on many orchestral performances (which are really given much screentime as well). That really makes this show different then any other show I’ve every seen in the slice-of-life sector. So in the end its no use watching this if hate idea with music at the center of this. I always read how this show is boring and slooow but this is slice-of-life at its core (so what DO this people expect here) and its also IMO a show just meant to relax and enjoy in a slower pace just like the music is incorporates. But the character development and comedy aspect of it didn’t seem to boring to me at all.
    Perhaps is not just what everybody lists as boring which matters just like Honey & Clover is not just a story about love, growing up and some drama in live but the combination of all this elements with great music and animation and charismatic characters and humor which makes the whole package so much better.

    Heibane Renmai:
    Well almost everything I said about kaiba regarding its thought provoking nature can be transfer here as well minus the mind screwing and the dark / confusion mood.
    HR is a must watch if you like to analyze some on the surface really simple stories which hide some almost allegory-like premise to it. (And obviously you do ^^) Their really is so much theorizing about the meaning to this show out their.
    Also your concerns about moe are unfounded. This show was made in a time where to be moe or not to be moe still wasn’t that much of important question and thats why it never even tries. Yes, there are kids among the angel-like people and they are cute and all but this show never tries to force all this usual tropes in the story and it would clearly stand in the way of its story and message anyways.
    I could write another long wall-of-text how good this show is but the guys from at D2Brigate already did a great job with mentioning all the important points (as always ^^) so I’ll just link their video review here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ChljQFvSdo

    • May I recommend Hayate’s second season then? Just give it a try. The first season are basically all comedy episodes that mess with the characters in either funny or stupid ways, depending on your point of view, and reference many shows. I found it fun myself. The second season, takes all the fun you already had as granted and starts to develop the characters and it has more romance elements.

      • Perhaps I’ll give give this show another chance some other day. As I said I don’t think its really bad or anything but after reaching twenty-something episodes it just seemed their were so much more interesting new show air out there and you know … when drop such a long series and leave it for years just forget the details and stop caring.

        Also have a long list of shows still to watch to and this show just is sooo long…. same as Hayate goes for Soul Eater I also never finished and is I guess thats as good as shounen action series get nowadays (well not being endless is already a huge plus ^^).
        The 2nd season of Darker then Black and 2nd/3rd season of Nodame also rang much higher in priority on my list (even if I heard the rest of Nodame doesn’t reach the quality the first season)… and stuff like the Kara no Kyoukai films which are easily the length of a whole series combined (but only hear good stuff but them and I may be one only person on the net who actually liked the Tsukihime anime for what is was and … well acknowledge its existence beside the VN ^^).

        For all the other series I didn’t comment on: I just didn’t see them so not much to write about first handed but Summer Wars and 5cm/sek get so much attention from all the bloggers I also have them on my list for a longer time. :P

        As for Rozen Maiden: Guess your right that the hype is just everybody watching it for the meme (well I didn’t and seems I was the right decision ^^) But its a rather silly hype as its as likely about a girl/doll/whatever saying ‘desu’ as the time as those Key novel are about girls saying ‘Ugu~’, ‘Gao~’ or whatever cute all the time ;D
        The other part sure is this doll outfits which give great material for parody fanarts….. omg soooo many fanarts out there about RM… really unbelievable.

  15. I haven’t watched Darker than Black, Eureka Seven and LOGH. The fact that LOGH has over 100 episodes makes me cry. I also got around 2 episodes of Shakugan no Shana, but I stopped watching it. I can’t remember why…

    Ouran HSHC is good, but I didn’t find it all that amazing for me to begin reading the manga after watching the anime. It must be because I don’t really like Haruhi. But yeah. Rozen Maiden is popular because of the desu meme, and that former Prime Minister of Japan, Taro Aso, is a fan of the show. The show isn’t bad, but it’s not the best thing ever. To me the best parts of the show were the ones that included Suigintou, the main antagonist of season 1.

    As for Bokurano, I haven’t watched the anime, but I read the manga (which ended some months ago), and it’s everything but “colorful”. There are changes between manga and anime, and it actually worries me, because I heard the anime director hates the original manga. However, it’s a story that starts silly but with 2 or 3 episodes, you start to see its true colors. To help you decide if you want to give it a shot, you should listen to the whole opening and pay attention to the lyrics. They really fit the series. And I would suggest reading the manga. It’s over now and well, we don’t have here directors hating and changing the original source.

    • For Bokurano: My words… the opening is a really good indicator ;P

      But as you mentioned this controversy about the anime director, what did he actually change for the anime? Never read the manga and only ever saw people on the net complaining about his statement and questioning why he adapted it in the first place. My guess was that he make some scenes a bit “softer” and changed the ending into a more positive conclusion (besides dealing with violence as every other tv series). Always had my suspicions about this rather “normal” ending compared to this depressing and confused final Narutaru presented (not that this was a bad thing with all the loose ends in Narutaru). But I actually never so bloggers comments on this when the series finished which seem rather surprising as the show itself got much talk.

      • They changed some of the kids’ stories, mainly Chizu and Machi’s, and the ending was quite different. Quite different. I’m being a little ambiguous, as someone may plan to read the manga and I’m here accidentally ruining it for them…
        But yeah, some parts are softer.

        • Thats ok… no needed to spoil anything as this already confirmed what I guessed. Still strange attitude of this director but happening all the time with adaptions, only without those kind of PR stunts.
          Excel Saga even constantly joked about how mangakas and anime directors fight over their material ;)

  16. I agree with great part of those, there are some animes like SnS, DTB, HnG, Gundam Seed, RM and Summer Wars that I felt like everybody knew it but me. LoGH is one that I STILL didn’t watched and I feel like I’m missing something…
    For SnS: I really liked the first season, it isn’t a masterpiece but it’s good. NOW the 2nd season…13 episodes of pure crap. :/

    You dind’t watched Seto no Hanayome? It’s just the most funny anime I ever watched.
    Really good blog.

  17. i have watched darker than black, dennou coil and 5cm. dabbled with hayate as well but dropped it early, the comedy didn’t do much for me after 6 eps…

    will def recommend dennou coil. starts slow, the real action didn’t take place until almost a dozen eps – looks like they try to lull us to believe that the augmented reality is all fun and games fit for kids… only later on the ugly truth begins to emerge, starting with the urban legends, which evolve into a lethal adventure to discover the truth of the technology that supports the “glasses”. i needed to watch the whole show twice, to get to understand it properly.

    darker than black is fun to watch the first time round but doesn’t stand to a second viewing. the 2nd season (ryuusei no gemini) is like huh?? but i’m enjoying the OVAs now.

    5cm per second is a pretty to watch, slow, pensive type of anime that gets you thinking about deeper things like impermanence etc.

    thanks for the list, i’m watching bokurano now. haven’t got far and have to say the premise of using kids to fight aliens smacks of Ender’s Game, but will give it a try. kaiba and haibane renmei sound interesting too.

  18. Darker than Black is a great anime; I’ve just had it on hold for over a year because I’m watching other stuff. Personally, I recommend Rozen Maiden, because I’m into that kind of anime, but I only like the 2nd season. H20 Footprints in the Sand you can probably skip; it’s one of my favorites, but it might not be your type.

  19. Hey, thanks for this. Of this list, I’ve only watched Nodame and Ouran. I would rather not watch an anime with more than 12 episodes (but I usually try to watch the first 2 to see if they are for my liking) so I am especially attracted to the movies/films you mentioned.

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