Hi Wow it’s been a long time since my last post. Time is scarce these days, but fortunately I can write this post in near-keyword form. So here it is: My Vanihm 2014 Anime Awards list:
(Note – I’m going with APR’s method an only ranking shows that ended in 2014 – Sorry Shirobako)
Best Drama: Ping Pong (No I don’t have a sports category ‘cos I don’t watch them very much)
Honerable mention: Space Brothers (I’ll miss you!), Mushisi 2
Seriously, this is the first time I have laughed so hard since Ouran High School Host Club. Too bad that drama club arc got old too quickly.
Orson Welles peaking-too-early award: Rage of the Bahamut: Genesis
I don’t know why, but the last half just couldn’t live up to the first at all. This is another example of a 12 episode series that feels like it should have been 24 episodes. I thought we had enough of those last year (Garganie, Kyousogiga…)
Hamster-on-wheel award for going nowhere: One Week Friends
Serously, what happened in those 12 episodes?
Bernard Montgomery award for most overrated: One Week Friends (note: I was wondering whether I should call this the Ang Lee award or perhaps the Vo Nguyen Giap award…)
That show reminded me af that episode of the Simpsons where they try to do a non-violent Itchy & Scratchy episode and all that happens is they sit around and drink lemonade and give each other gifts. Or that black&white town in Pleasantville. I dont’t mind nostalgia, but this show was so naive it was almost chauvinistic. I was hoping the guy would eventually choke on all those bentos that she made for him. Did he ever do anything for her? Seriously, she even did his homework for him. If that is the relationship most Japanese guys want then no wonder Japenese women don’t want to get married anymore.
Most underrated: Kill la Kill
I bet you were expecting something less well known there huh? No, I picked this because I have rarely seen a show so popular during it’s run get slammed so hard in retrospect. “Oh, its popular so let’s try to look really sophisticated by saying it’s lame”. Feminists (or wanabee feminists) criticised the themes and the fanservice without noticing all the nude men in the show. Some of the criticism was based mainly on people not getting the irony or the humour. I remember how Sam Raimi’s Spiderman films (particularly the third) got a lot of heat in the states for being silly or mixing humour and action. I (and many other Europeans) loved the third one and felt the comedy fit in perfectly with the source without taking anything away from the suspense. I know the opinions about Kill la Kill aren’t confined to Americans, but it seems people in the US like to have “pure” comedy or “pure” drama while the Japanese excel in taking a completely ridicculous premise and still making it work on an emotional level. This show was silly, yes. It had fanservice, yes. But it was aware of it’s own sillyness and still gave us a plot and characters we cared about while keeping the action going in spectacualar fashion. What more can you ask for?
Coundn’t be bothered: Anything about games (sorry SAO, Log Horizon & No game, No life), everything JoJO (like the first few episodes, but the sheer scale of the frachise is daunting…),Your lie in April (proabably should have watched it but never got around to it), Hunter x Hunter (I’m still working through the 2011 season!), Every feature length anime (man, I’m behind on that one!)
Will probably watch: Barakamon, Silver Spoon
Biggest screw up *WARNING SPOILERS* : Entire cast of Aldnoah: Zero.
Honerable mention: Kana, Parasyte: The Maxim, Tarou, Shirobako
Yes, Slaine really screwed up, but at least he DID something useful in this show unlike Mrs. “I-need-to-yell-“NO”-every-time-Inaho-does-something-even-though-he-has-no-other-choice” or Mr “I-am-angry-I-was-tricked-into-hating-Terrans-and-therefore-I-am-waging-war-on-them”. Or Mrs. “I-have-PTSD-so-I-think-I’ll-just-kill-the-one-person-who-I-can-most-identify-with”? And Slaine wouldn’t even be around to screw up if Inaho (also known as Mr “I-trust-the-psycho-redhead-but-not-the-guy-who-saved-our-ass”) hadn’t left him in the water for the martians to pick up instead of taking him prisoner or killing him. And why didn’t anyone ask what the heck happened to the Martian that just saved their butts? Writing FAIL. Also, Damn Kana (AKA puppy loving, stalking, gangbanger girl) you should have died earlier and rid everyone else of your stupidity.
Drum roll please….
Best Anime: Kill La Kill
Close runner ups: Monthly Girls Nozaki-kun, Ping Pong
Damn this was a close one. Frankly I feel Kill La Kill needs some love since it seems most people have forgotten it actually aired in 2014. Nozaki kun could have taken the top spot if it wasn’t for the abusive actress-drama club president relationship (which I didn’t dislike because of the violence toward women but simply because it wasn’t very funny). Ping Pong was great as well, but I felt Peco stole the show a little bit too much in the end. Season overall: It’s been hard to find a favorite in the last three seasons but this year at least it was because there were too many stand out shows. In 2012-13 there were plenty of decent shows but nothing that truly stood out. This year we have had a little bit for everyone in spite of the fact that there was a certain lack of non high-school related shows – perhaps next year? Seriously, the fanbase is getting older – they can’t ALL be living in the past!