Evidently, some kind of epic cross-blog discussion began. It starts on hontou ni, though perhaps it truly began months ago on We Remember Love? It spreads like wildfire through the blogosphere, with one post inadvertently being related, and somewhere between the post on FunBlog and the comments on Omonomono’s post, I see a revelation!
I don’t want to tread familiar ground here, so I’ll summarize everyone else’s stuff – your top 5 anime say a lot about you, and, according to Ghostlightning, create a sort of brand for you (i.e. if all you like are mech shows, you sell yourself as a mecha fan, and people will see you as just that.) However, in another post, Ghostlightning brings up ‘guilty pleasures’ (his post being about the inherent wrongness in feeling guilt for liking something) and the idea of a ‘guilty pleasure’ suddenly adds another view to my observation in Omo and FunBlog’s posts as well as in my own Top 10 list.
The observation is all about ‘personal rules’ (or as I shell henceforth refer to them, ORE NO RUURU!) Starting with FunBlog, he writes 2 different lists (and since he says ‘draw your own conclusions,’ I will!) One is a list of the shows he enjoys most. The second is a list of shows he admires most for their artistic quality. Wait, what? What the hell does that mean? The shows he likes aren’t necessarily his favorites? There are some overlaps, which implies that the idea of artistic quality is already a factor in determining which anime he likes most, and yet liking an anime most does not necessarily make it a favorite.
Is he saying that there is some objective reasoning that the shows on the second list are the five best anime out there from an artistic standpoint? No. I don’t think so. This simply can’t be true. I say so because I disagree – I don’t think that, if there were some master list of great anime, these would be the top five. It’s bullshit! So that’s not what he means. Fuck all, even he’s not sure what he means! He says so! We should not take from this that he is making a bad attempt at being objective. This, my friends, is an example of ORE NO RUURU. And it has no explanation.
We see it to a far more perplexing extent in Omo’s top five, which should probably just burn! He, too, makes two lists, one that is ‘his top five list’ and one that is ‘what he would rather his top five look like.’ What in the HELL does that mean?! Did you also notice that there is NO overlap in the two lists?! This is just disastrous – he’s saying that none of the five shows he would like to consider his top five are on it! It’s a top five of LIES! This, my friends… is ORE NO RUURU. And in this case, it’s much easier to explain. But to save on time, I’m going to use my own ORE NO RUURU to explain his.
My ‘Top 10’ page is a fucking disaster. I have ten shows on there, and you will notice they all have a score. This is not an objective score – this is my pure subjective ranking of all shows. And you’ll see that the highest on the list is 9.9 (which has been perplexing me for my entire life) and that the lowest in the list is ranked ‘9.0’. You will then see a ‘potential additions’ list wherein the top show is ranked 9.8. Meaning that if it were in the list, it would be my second favorite anime of all fucking time. How did this happen? Well if you look at the top of the page, you will see the following guidelines:
Rules for an anime to be in the Top 10:
– Must have been at least 6 months since I first completed the show
– Must have seen it at least twice in it’s entirety
– Must not be on probation (meaning I want to watch it again or post about it before allowing placement)
Yes, folks, guidelines. What do guidelines mean? It means that I am not using my gut. It means that the show ranked at number two is not the number two, and that the real number two is being held back by some arbitrary guideline. It’s a lie! you know it is because the score proves it! This is just like Omo. The real reason for his top five is that something in his soul refuses to let the shows he has there be removed. He knows that they shouldn’t be there and yet he doesn’t remove them due to ORE NO RUURU. I, too, know that Toradora belongs in my top five, but ORE NO RUURU prevents it from access until the regulations are met. As soon as I rewatch Toradora, it will be in my top five, and maybe in ten years, Manabi Straight will be Omo’s number one.
Now, where does GL’s talk of guilty pleasures come into this? Well, I think ORE NO RUURU can be partly created by guilt. When you like a show for long enough, you can honestly feel guilty about no longer considering it your favorite anime. It took a long time for me to admit that Neon Genesis Evangelion was no longer my favorite anime, and ever since I didn’t like certain shows as much upon rewatching, I’ve felt guilty about proclaiming my love for a show before rewatching it. Silly, right? Shouldn’t I just edit my top five every time I feel the need to change it? But somehow, I can’t feel it until it has passed through ORE NO RUURU. If I watched a show that I honestly liked more than Eureka Seven, I couldn’t admit it at first. I would know it in my heart, and even if I put it on my number one spot, it would still take six months and multiple watches before it truly felt like my number one favorite.
I think we all have ORE NO RUURU in our hearts, and while it can sometimes feel dishonest, I feel that ORE NO RUURU is truly what gives my favorites list the weight and gravity that lets me take it seriously. So let me ask you: what is KIMI NO RUURU?