I Have Gone Through Many Favorite Anime

Re-Awakened Into Full-Fledged Otaku – Got back into anime, started a blog, and moved on the path to where I am today!

The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya

I watched Haruhi in December 06 and it was the first thing to cheer me up from my depression in a long time – that is, until it was over, and I got depressed again. I’d even call that the reason I wanted to get into anime again, to regain the good feeling I had when watching that show. It was my first fansub, watched on Youtube, and I truly resonated with Haruhi like I had no other character but Shinji. However, what I think really changed me about Haruhi was that this was the first show I’d seen that emphasized characters over plot, and I totally fell in love with the whole lot of them. It might have really been the first anime that kept giving me something beyond just watching it and enjoying it for what it was. That all said, in spite of my placement, I never actually listed Haruhi as my number one favorite anime. I was too stubborn about Evangelion even though by the time I watched Haruhi I could remember very little of Eva (this is why you don’t marathon when you aren’t good at watching anime yet, jackass!) When I finally admitted that Eva had been beat by the next show, I listed Haruhi as number 2, since I knew that it should have been my favorite for quite a while.

I also think it deserves mention that since this was my first favorite while into anime for real and having money, it was the first series that I could really buy products from. I own all 4 of the limited edition boxes, and I’ve also bought (small and rather cheap) Haruhi Live-a-Live and Yuki figures. Even though I’ve been largely burned out on Haruhi these days and trying to sort of avoid it, I’m still quite proud of my merchandise ownership.

Welcome to the NHK

NHK made me finally admit that Evangelion wasn’t my favorite show anymore. The series was far too powerful to me – I’d been essentially locked in my room for years at this point and even though anime had brought me out of my depression, I was still burdened with all of the knowledge and experience of those years, and when I would crash, I would crash really hard – Satou hard. Like Haruhi, NHK gave me much, much more than just a show, but it gave me ways of looking at life, namely my own (and of course it was still a really damn entertaining show.) NHK is very ingrained into my thought process now – it’s one of those shows/books that I quote frequently or use to explain things. Even though I have a very positive outlook on life these days and don’t necessarily agree with some of the story’s worldviews, it was nonetheless the perfect launch-point for what I basically try to do every day on my blog – understand and explain just what the hell is up with me. Plus the novel was fucking amazing.

Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann

I imagine you’ve read people explain why they love TTGL before, and my explanation probably doesn’t differ much – it’s the most uplifting and epic anime ever created. The effect that this show had on myself and my brother cannot be understated – and it’s still my brother’s favorite anime. He actually wears the drill that came with his Revoltech as a necklace, and has the light-up drill that came with one of the DVD boxes attached to his keychain (yes, we’ve made it light up while plugging in the key). What’s funny, though, is that when I saw this show, I thought that nothing could possibly top it. A couple of weeks later, Eureka Seven came close. A couple of weeks after that, TTGL was overtaken.

ef ~a tale of memories~

I won’t link to the fairly embarrassing year-end post I did after watching this show on New Year’s Day 2008, but suffice it to say the show utterly overtook my favorites list. It was very much ‘where I was at’ in life at the time, and it was also in the style that I had come to love from a year’s worth of becoming an Akiyuki Shinbo fanboy. I honestly believed after watching ef that it would be never be overtaken, and it had a good run, since I didn’t officially replace it until December of that year. I have a lot of ef merch, too, partly because No Name gave me some of the crap he got from Japanese magazines such as a regular-sized double-sided Miyako pillowcase, a deck of playing cards, this… mat… thing, and then at Otakon that year I bought a humongous Chihiro bedsheet, which is currently hanging on my ceiling over my bed scaring the fuck out of everyone who comes to visit.

Earth Maiden Arjuna

This was my weirdest, most short-lived favorite. When I first watched Arjuna I considered it ‘tied with ef’ as my favorite anime of all time, because it’s messages had seemed so incredibly important to me. However, less than 2 months later, I had my little brother watch the show, and as I tuned in for parts of it, I noticed that a lot of it wasn’t as mind-blowing as I had first thought – I was so caught up in the messages that I hadn’t given the show the responsibility of being entertaining. I was so confused and disappointed that I stripped the show of favorites status, and I also discovered the importance of rewatching shows before considering them favorites. That entire experience ultimately inspired the Epic Journey, which is considered this blog’s ‘true purpose.’

Eureka Seven

And the first conclusion of the Epic Journey was that Eureka Seven was my favorite anime. While the show had come so close to that status back in 2007, it wasn’t until December 2008 that it was ‘officially’ appointed that status, and it hasn’t changed since. There are more than enough posts on this site about why I love Eureka Seven so much, though I do need to rewatch it sometime soon. However, unlike with Evangelion way back, I actually am confident in my stubbornness for Eureka Seven and earnestly believe that it won’t be losing it’s top spot for a long, long time. The only anime that’s come close is my current second-favorite Gintama, however even though I score the two series as equals, in my mind and heart, Eureka Seven will always be the top of my favorites list.

And those are all – I was going to add a section on my manga favorites and other stuff, but I already feel this is lengthy and redundant enough, so we’ll leave it at that~

20 thoughts on “I Have Gone Through Many Favorite Anime

  1. Thanks for the mention =D It was great reading about your journey through favorite anime, too.

    Though never a big favorite of mine, Cowboy Bebop will always be special to me because we watched it a lot in my high school anime club. Unfortunately I didn’t have cable TV until 2005, so I missed out on Rurouni Kenshin (just when I was planning to watch it, they took it off the air). I was also into Trigun and Yu-Gi-Oh! but not as much as the others.

    At one point I considered Eureka 7 one of my favorites, but since then my memories of it have gotten kind of fuzzy (I watched it back in ’06) so I really need to watch it again. I was expecting Gintama and Toradora! to be on your list ’cause I know how much you like those.

    • Gintama and Toradora are my 2 and 3. Very close behind E7. I didn’t want to include stuff that was close thought because there were a number of very close ones that have kept their place a long time (FLCL and Lain have stayed in the top 10 since their first viewing, effectively meaning they passed a lot of former #1s without ever having a chance to become one.)

  2. Let me try this:

    1. Pokemon (~1999)
    2. Tenchi Universe (~2000)
    3. Outlaw Star (~2001)
    4. Trigun (~2001)
    5. Ayashi no Ceres (~2001)
    6. Berserk (~2002)
    7. Touch (2004)
    8. Death Note (2006)
    9. Higurashi & Claymore (tie) (2007)
    10. Detroit Metal City (2009)

      • It was in my top 10 back in 2005, but I liked Touch better. As far as true lead characters go (as opposed to split leads), Tatsuya Uesugi is arguably my favorite all-time. Shizuru is one of my all-time favorite anime characters regardless of role, but when you take screen time into account, Tatsuya gave me more aggregated awesome over 101 episodes than Shizuru gave me in a few brief moments of murderous lesbian insanity.

  3. Interesting read.

    I found it intriguing to look over the list as it progressed through time since it also reads at points like a roadmap of anime fandom in America – particularly with Trigun and Cowboy Bebop. I remember when those shows were HUUUGE and it seemed as if everyone who liked anime in America had watched them both. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that they’ve completely dropped out of the collective consciousness, but it seems like less and less of the newer fans have watched them. It’ll be interesting to see what the opening of the Trigun movie at Sakura Con will do about that for Trigun.

    • That reminds me, when I was 13 and all, I always had this belief that the 2 most popular/acclaimed anime were Hellsing for 13 ep shows and Eva for 26 ep shows, which was just going by opinions I read. I thought Hellsing was alright and had 2 vols of the DVDs and manga, though I sold them later – kinda regret selling the manga, too.

  4. Let’s see here.

    Pokemon (1998)
    Rurouni Kenshin (2003)
    Trigun (2006)
    Azumanga Daioh (2007)
    Gurren Lagann (2008) Which has ruled concurrently with:
    GTO (2009)
    Manabi Straight (2010)

  5. I don’t really know the timeline. I know I watched DBZ first. Really early on when it was showing on the WB in like 1997. Then I migrated through Pokemon, Sailor Moon, and the like. Watching subbed sailor moon episodes and reading DBZ movie summaries. Tenchi Muyo hit and I was obsessed with that for awhile. Watching the Toonami block and later the Adult Swim block. FLCL was when it really kicked off for me. When I saw it on Adult Swim I was like holy shit what is this I want more.

    From there I started watching shit on youtube. I watched Lain and Eureka 7 on entirely on youtube. I watched one episode of Azumanga. Then I discovered crunchyroll. I watched GTO and Bamboo Blade were the premier anime for me on crunchyroll. I would also DDL Bleach, Black Lagoon and later Gintama. I watched all of Naruto and a fair amount of Shippuuden on crunchyroll.

    Then TTGL aired and I knew this wasn’t some show I should watch on a grainy stream. So Gurren Lagann became the first thing I ever torrented. Vandread was I think the first anime I ever batch downloaded. Also Haruhi, Big O, Trigun are in there somewhere above.

    My list probably went.
    DBZ (~1997)
    Tenchi Muyo (~2002)
    FLCL (~2003)
    Eureka 7 (~2006)
    Haruhi (2007)
    Gurren Lagann (2008ish)
    Clannad AS (2009ish)
    Gintama (2010)

    • Haha, this is pretty similar to my progression, especially the parts in 2007! I too was on youtube, then discovered crunchyroll, and finally started DLing fansubs when I met No Name and he taught me how to use bittorrent clients and stuff. I love your list, because it’s almost all shows I love/d as well~

  6. hah, its good that someone else is acknowledging how good Arjuna is. I talked to people who watch anime that went blank when I mention about it. It frustrated me because I think it has one of the most important message in its story, compared to other anime.

  7. I’ve only had a handful of changes over the course of my fandom.

    ~1995: Project A-Ko
    ~1996: Ranma 1/2
    ~1998: Maison Ikkoku
    ~1999: Cowboy Bebop
    2010: Debating whether Book of Bantorra will be the series to finally overtake Cowboy Bebop. Probably not.

    And I dig that the X movie is on that list at the same relative time as Yu Gi Oh. THAT’S the sort of formative experience every kid needs: seeing people cradle decapitated heads.

  8. I wish I had good memories like you lot. I have gaps in between the years, since there were a few years in the early 00’s that my life only revolved around soccer. I still remember what I watched vaguely, although I wasn’t really fully into it.

    ~1999: DBZ
    ~2000: Pokemon/Digimon
    ~2001: Vandread (I think)
    ~2002: Gatekeepers
    ~2003: Yugi-oh
    ~2004: Evangelion
    ~2005: Cowboy Bebop/Trigun
    ~2006: Eureka Seven
    ~2007: TTGL/Samurai Champloo
    ~2008: Code Geass
    ~2009: Not a great year for me. I still haven’t watched Bakemonogatari yet too.
    ~2010: Durarara!!

  9. I could have sworn I did this earlier …

    1993: Sailor Moon (way back when it was on UPN; the first and only anime I saw for a long time, and pretty much a default favorite)
    1998: Pokemon (I was pretty much Pokemon’s target demographic — it came out when I was in middle school, I was still way into gaming and I was obsessed with this. The only way I could have been more perfect is if I were rich and spent all my money on Pokemon shit (which I wasn’t and did not).)
    2002: Dragon Ball Z (came on when I got home from school, so it was good to watch after a hard day of learning crap I would never use again)
    2003: Cowboy Bebop (pretty much the coolest thing I had ever seen at this point in time)
    2004: RahXephon (connected with me in ways I’ll elaborate upon at some later date)
    2008: Revolutionary Girl Utena (I watched four anime that topped RahXephon for me — including Monster, Eureka Seven and Kaleido Star — but Utena is the best of the best. It’ll take a pretty fucking amazing show to top Utena for me.)

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