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Sunday, October 14, 2012

Best Anime (short series. post 2000)

I don't watch very much anime. Don't have the attention span for long series. I blame fillers for that. So I'm picking my favorite short series (less than 52 episodes) that have been released since 2000. I count series add-ons as separate ( so Hellsing Ultimate is a distinct series from Hellsing). Won't include ongoing series, obviously. So Hellsing Ultimate just got cut.

10. Gurren Lagann (2007) - 27 episodes

Why watch it: I like mecha anime. And this series is exciting and unpredictable. With giant robots. And if you don't care for robots the comedy,drama and great characters are enough of a draw. It's the kind of show that gives the message 'you can do anything' but you won't roll your eyes on hearing it.

9. Bunny Drop (2011) - 11 episodes

Why watch it: Every now and then a good reality-based, slice of life anime catches my attention. Fun to watch for a change (and a little like a travel documentary into Japan life). This one about a thirty year old who becomes the guardian of a six year old. It is deceptively simple in its dealing with complex issues but with beauty derived from such simplicity.

8.Texhnolyze (2003) - 22 episodes

Why Watch it: Initially very confusing and always dark and gloomy. It's like an anime version of film noir. And I love film noir.

7. Ghost in the Shell: S.A.C. 2nd GIG (2004)- 26 episodes

Why watch it: Not as good as the first series, I think. Perhaps because it's more on characters and investigation than action. Doesn't mean it isn't excellent, just that the first series was elite. This one gets you thinking a lot about ethics and philosophy. And that's always good.

6. Baccano! (2007)- 16 episodes

Why watch it: Complex plots and what feels like hundreds of characters, it seems a bit intimidating. But it's clever and fun. Especially if you like mafia films (who doesn't?). This one might be one of those anime that's a starting point for a new style.

5.  Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex (2002) - 26 episodes

Why watch it: Every episode is excellent. Every moment of every episode, every character; is there to drive the plot forward. It's clear this is an intensely thought out series and supremely crafted. The artwork is also exceptional.

4. Rainbow: Nisha Rokubo no Shichinin (2010) -26 episodes

Why Watch it: Historical anime set at a reform school in 1950's Japan and the experiences there of the six characters. The characters are very likeable and you get caught up in seeing all the tough times that they have to face. It's a series that's hard to not connect with.

3. Death Note (2006) - 37 episodes

Why watch it: The first 25 episodes are what make the series great. It could have ended there. This series is very much a psychological thriller. The viewers are introduced to two of the most complex anime characters ever created in L and Light and get to see exactly what their motives are and get to see some brilliant deductions too.

2. Samurai Champloo (2004) - 26 episodes

Why watch it: Brilliant series and a worthy follow-up to Cowboy Bebop by  Watanabe. I loved the use of hip-hop culture in the samurai-era Japan setting. Some of the later episodes were a bit unnecessary but throughout the relationship between the contrasting main characters are what drives the show. And the great action scenes.

1. Fullmetal Alchemist (2003) - 51 episodes

Why watch it: A little bit sentimental and intentionally-emotional to get a response but this anime is like serious literature- intensely character driven. It could be your classic novel about an odyssey toward redemption, not just in storyline but quality.

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