Best of 2010 – Anime

As I began writing this, I realized that I had a lot to say about the variety of anime that 2010 offered.  I wound up deciding not to include manga because I haven’t read any new series.  However, I do have to give props to Katekyo Hitman Reborn! for having Kyoya Hibari finally meet a worthy match and making her a girl and to Ouran High School Host Club for having a very atypical confession scene and a fantastic ending.

Anyway, you’ll find that this list has a bunch of old favorites, as well as series that debuted in 2010.  You will also encounter my list of superlatives, which I thought would be a fun alternative to “Best Character”.

Best scene – Ed’s confession to Winry (Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood)
We finally get the moment we were denied in the first anime, and it’s the most unique awkward proposal ever.  I wanted to laugh and cry tears of joy.

Best theme – “Uragiri no Yuuyake” by Theatre Brook (Durarara!!)
This song starts off with a toe-tapping beat and crescendos into a passionate rock melody.  It suits all the characters introduced in the opening animation.  It’s hip, a little old school, and catchy, and I would recommend listening to the whole song for an awesome guitar solo.

Best voice acting – Jamie Marchi as Chibitalia Narrator (Axis Powers Hetalia)
The Hetalia dub cast should get this award for boldly going the non-PC route.  Jamie Marchi stands out because she manages to say “But they were unfortunately assholes” in the sweetest story-time narrator voice ever.

Cosplay this series if you want to be cool – Axis Powers Hetalia
’s outfits are very recognizable but not ready-made, and it’s a series where it pays to have gaijin features.  Also who doesn’t love the idea of fanservice between countries?
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Photo by Mika Lopes

Line we like to repeat – “IIIII-ZAAAA-YAAA-KUUN!!!”  (Shizuo Heiwajima, Durarara!!)
There hasn’t been a character that makes us want to yell a name at the top of our lungs since Kaneda and Tetsuo of Akira (sorry Takeda and Yukimura).  What makes this awesome is the rare honorific Shizuo added.

Most overrated series – Togainu no Chi
As promised by the game and the trailer, Togainu no Chi should have been a compelling, action-packed yaoi series.  Instead, we got dull fight scenes, flat characters, and little boys love action.

Anime of the year – Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood
It was a bold move to remake a well-loved series.  Brotherhood grew on you once it stopped being like the first one.  The last few episodes had epic battles, tragic sacrifices, heart-warming reunions, optimistic messages, and of course, Ed and Winry finally together.
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Most anticipated series for 2011 – Supernatural
Although I remain wary of this series, I have started to see the potential after seeing an episode that had an okami.  How would the Winchesters deal with other, more bizarre Japanese monsters?

Character Superlatives

  • Best Dressed – Shiki (Togainu no Chi)
  • Best Eyes – Akira (Togainu no Chi)
  • Best Hair – Mafuyu Oribe (Seikon no Qwaser)
  • Best Legs – Stocking (Panty and Stocking with Garter Belt)
  • Best Smile – Date Masamune (Sengoku Basara 2)
  • Biggest Flirt – Panty (Panty and Stocking with Garter Belt)
  • Class Clown – Yui Hirasawa (K-On!!)
  • Cutest Couple – Winry Rockbell and Edward Elric (Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood)
  • Friendliest – Takeshi Yamamoto (Katekyo Hitman Reborn!)
  • Most Athletic – Izaya Orihara (Durarara!!)
  • Most Likely to Succeed… in Taking Over the World – Hokago Tea Time (K-On!!) because of this
  • Most Spirited – Chosokabe Motochika (Sengoku Basara 2)
  • Most Talented…with a Weapon – Shizuo Heiwajima (Durarara!!)

Best Eyes with Best Dressed… with a bit of fanservice. ^_~

What do you think of the superlatives? Who would be your picks? Before I go, I leave you with a link to some nengajou (New Year’s greetings) from various animation studios, mangaka, and J-pop singers.

Listening to: “Watashi no Koi wa Hotch Kiss” (Let’s Go! LIVE) by Houkago Tea Time

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