So, I haven’t actively watched anime for a long while. After going through this glorious month of anime lists and research I’ve realized anew I need to jump into the deep end of the anime world once again.
This list is another I’ve designed to be a launching point for future reviews and projects. Anything on it I’ve not finished more than a few episodes.
Let’s get started!
Dororo (2019) by Tezuka Productions, MAPPA
The greedy samurai lord Daigo Kagemitsu’s land is dying, and he would do anything for power, even renounce Buddha and make a pact with demons. His prayers are answered by 12 demons who grant him the power he desires by aiding his prefecture’s growth, but at a price. When Kagemitsu’s first son is born, the boy has no limbs, no nose, no eyes, no ears, nor even skin—yet still, he lives.
This child is disposed of in a river and forgotten. But as luck would have it, he is saved by a medicine man who provides him with prosthetics and weapons, allowing for him to survive and fend for himself. The boy lives and grows, and although he cannot see, hear, or feel anything, he must defeat the demons that took him as sacrifice. With the death of each one, he regains a part of himself that is rightfully his. For many years he wanders alone, until one day an orphan boy, Dororo, befriends him. The unlikely pair of castaways now fight for their survival and humanity in an unforgiving, demon-infested world.Myanimelist Overview
I’m an avid fan of Rurouni Kenshin and enjoy a good Japanese Historical Fantasy Drama every once in a while. I found this anime while pursuing A LOT of AMV’s for the last of my anime posts for April. I like the premise and might enjoy it.
The only things I can think of that would deter me from watching it further are gore and excessive violence. We will have to see.
Yuru Camp△ (2018) by C-Station
While the perfect getaway for most girls her age might be a fancy vacation with their loved ones, Rin Shima’s ideal way of spending her days off is camping alone at the base of Mount Fuji. From pitching her tent to gathering firewood, she has always done everything by herself, and has no plans of leaving her little solitary world.
However, what starts off as one of Rin’s usual camping sessions somehow ends up as a surprise get-together for two when the lost Nadeshiko Kagamihara is forced to take refuge at her campsite. Originally intending to see the picturesque view of Mount Fuji for herself, Nadeshiko’s plans are disrupted when she ends up falling asleep partway to her destination. Alone and with no other choice, she seeks help from the only other person nearby. Despite their hasty introductions, the two girls nevertheless enjoy the chilly night together, eating ramen and conversing while the campfire keeps them warm. And even after Nadeshiko’s sister finally picks her up later that night, both girls silently ponder the possibility of another camping trip together.Myanimelist Overview
I found this quiet looking anime while watching Glass Reflection’s Top anime list from the 2010s. Sometimes I need anime I can fall back into to unwind from the stresses of the day. Watching an anime where the characters immerse themselves in nature and enjoy the beauties of camping seems like a good pick for me.
The only thing I can think of that could make this uninteresting is bad character animation or dull backgrounds.
Death Parade (2015) by Madhouse
After death, there is no heaven or hell, only a bar that stands between reincarnation and oblivion. There the attendant will, one after another, challenge pairs of the recently deceased to a random game in which their fate of either ascending into reincarnation or falling into the void will be wagered. Whether it’s bowling, darts, air hockey, or anything in between, each person’s true nature will be revealed in a ghastly parade of death and memories, dancing to the whims of the bar’s master. Welcome to Quindecim, where Decim, arbiter of the afterlife, awaits!
Death Parade expands upon the original one-shot intended to train young animators. It follows yet more people receiving judgment—until a strange, black-haired guest causes Decim to begin questioning his own rulings.Myanimelist Overview
I’ve tried watching this before, but its portrayal of judgment and death really bothered me. I stopped after four episodes. Looking back, especially after watching the opening so many times, I thought maybe it’s time to watch it all the way through. Perhaps I’ve matured enough to understand the meaning behind it.
The only thing I can think of that would stop me from finishing is my previous bias. Hopefully, I can stick it out till the end to cast my full judgment.
Show White with Red Hair (2015-?) Bones
Although her name means “snow white,” Shirayuki is a cheerful, red-haired girl living in the country of Tanbarun who works diligently as an apothecary at her herbal shop. Her life changes drastically when she is noticed by the silly prince of Tanbarun, Prince Raji, who then tries to force her to become his concubine. Unwilling to give up her freedom, Shirayuki cuts her long red hair and escapes into the forest, where she is rescued from Raji by Zen Wistalia, the second prince of a neighboring country, and his two aides. Hoping to repay her debt to the trio someday, Shirayuki sets her sights on pursuing a career as the court herbalist in Zen’s country, Clarines.
Akagami no Shirayuki-hime depicts Shirayuki’s journey toward a new life at the royal palace of Clarines, as well as Zen’s endeavor to become a prince worthy of his title. As loyal friendships are forged and deadly enemies formed, Shirayuki and Zen slowly learn to support each other as they walk their own paths.Myanimelist Overview
I liked this story even before it was an anime! In fact, I followed the manga all the way through. I haven’t watched the anime honestly because I was afraid they wouldn’t do the story justice. Through further research, I decided to give it a try. I mean, Bones did the animation! Bones usually does a good job even for its Shoujo Anime.
What would keep me from really getting into this story would have to be animation and pacing. If those don’t fall into place I probably will lose interest fast.
Anohana: The Flower We saw That Day (2011) by A-1 Pictures
Jinta Yadomi is peacefully living as a recluse, spending his days away from school and playing video games at home instead. One hot summer day, his childhood friend, Meiko “Menma” Honma, appears and pesters him to grant a forgotten wish. He pays her no mind, which annoys her, but he doesn’t really care. After all, Menma already died years ago.
At first, Jinta thinks that he is merely hallucinating due to the summer heat, but he is later on convinced that what he sees truly is the ghost of Menma. Jinta and his group of childhood friends grew apart after her untimely death, but they are drawn together once more as they try to lay Menma’s spirit to rest. Re-living their pain and guilt, will they be able to find the strength to help not only Menma move on—but themselves as well?Myanimelist Overview
Yes. I know I need to watch this. I know. Several of my friends and family members have recommended it to me, saying if I like A Silent Voice (2016) I would definately like Anohana. Because I am so empathetic I have a hard time watching emotionally draining shows. For that reason, I’ve put this show off for the last 9 years.
Looking back on it though, every time I’ve watched these types of shows I learn important things about humanity. So, I will buckle down and see where it takes me. I might not cry. That’s not likely though.
Rising of Shield Hero (2019-?) by Kinema Citrus
The Four Cardinal Heroes are a group of ordinary men from modern-day Japan summoned to the kingdom of Melromarc to become its saviors. Melromarc is a country plagued by the Waves of Catastrophe that have repeatedly ravaged the land and brought disaster to its citizens for centuries. The four heroes are respectively bestowed a sword, spear, bow, and shield to vanquish these Waves. Naofumi Iwatani, an otaku, becomes cursed with the fate of being the “Shield Hero.” Armed with only a measly shield, Naofumi is belittled and ridiculed by his fellow heroes and the kingdom’s people due to his weak offensive capabilities and lackluster personality.
When the heroes are provided with resources and comrades to train with, Naofumi sets out with the only person willing to train alongside him, Malty Melromarc. He is soon betrayed by her, however, and becomes falsely accused of taking advantage of her. Naofumi then becomes heavily discriminated against and hated by the people of Melromarc for something he didn’t do. With a raging storm of hurt and mistrust in his heart, Naofumi begins his journey of strengthening himself and his reputation. Further along however, the difficulty of being on his own sets in, so Naofumi buys a demi-human slave on the verge of death named Raphtalia to accompany him on his travels.
As the Waves approach the kingdom, Naofumi and Raphtalia must fight for the survival of the kingdom and protect the people of Melromarc from their ill-fated future.Myanimelist Overview
Confession time. I am not all that interested in Isekai anime or manga. They all look the same to me and I get bored fast watching the same type of stories over and over again. I need variety! However, my brother recommended I watch this one for the sake of the story and animation. Looking at the trailer and some of its animation, I decided he was right.
However, if this story is like the other Isekai dramas people have tried to get me into, I will fade away and watch something else. Sorry, variety is the spice of my life.
Violet Evergarden (2018) by Kyoto Animation
The Great War finally came to an end after four long years of conflict; fractured in two, the continent of Telesis slowly began to flourish once again. Caught up in the bloodshed was Violet Evergarden, a young girl raised for the sole purpose of decimating enemy lines. Hospitalized and maimed in a bloody skirmish during the War’s final leg, she was left with only words from the person she held dearest, but with no understanding of their meaning.
Recovering from her wounds, Violet starts a new life working at CH Postal Services after a falling out with her new intended guardian family. There, she witnesses by pure chance the work of an “Auto Memory Doll,” amanuenses that transcribe people’s thoughts and feelings into words on paper. Moved by the notion, Violet begins work as an Auto Memory Doll, a trade that will take her on an adventure, one that will reshape the lives of her clients and hopefully lead to self-discovery.Myanimelist Overview
Yep. This is another anime which has popped up EVERYWHERE, especially in AMVs and top anime lists. I have no excuse for why I haven’t seen this beyond fearing it might not be good. But I will face my fears and watch it in the near future! The animation looks beautiful and the story on further reflection looks like my cup of tea.
My Hero Academia (2016-) by Bones
The appearance of “quirks,” newly discovered super powers, has been steadily increasing over the years, with 80 percent of humanity possessing various abilities from manipulation of elements to shapeshifting. This leaves the remainder of the world completely powerless, and Izuku Midoriya is one such individual.
Since he was a child, the ambitious middle schooler has wanted nothing more than to be a hero. Izuku’s unfair fate leaves him admiring heroes and taking notes on them whenever he can. But it seems that his persistence has borne some fruit: Izuku meets the number one hero and his personal idol, All Might. All Might’s quirk is a unique ability that can be inherited, and he has chosen Izuku to be his successor!
Enduring many months of grueling training, Izuku enrolls in UA High, a prestigious high school famous for its excellent hero training program, and this year’s freshmen look especially promising. With his bizarre but talented classmates and the looming threat of a villainous organization, Izuku will soon learn what it really means to be a hero.Myanimelist Overview
I actually started watching this anime on Crunchyroll several years ago. I liked it a lot! But. . . Crunchyroll on my phone was WAY too slow so I stopped watching it until I could get better service. By the time that happened, my attention had shifted and I never finished.
This is one of those on this list I know I will love. I just need to sit down in the next few months and watch it.
Haikyuu!! (2015-?) by Production I.G
Inspired after watching a volleyball ace nicknamed “Little Giant” in action, small-statured Shouyou Hinata revives the volleyball club at his middle school. The newly-formed team even makes it to a tournament; however, their first match turns out to be their last when they are brutally squashed by the “King of the Court,” Tobio Kageyama. Hinata vows to surpass Kageyama, and so after graduating from middle school, he joins Karasuno High School’s volleyball team—only to find that his sworn rival, Kageyama, is now his teammate.
Thanks to his short height, Hinata struggles to find his role on the team, even with his superior jumping power. Surprisingly, Kageyama has his own problems that only Hinata can help with, and learning to work together appears to be the only way for the team to be successful. Based on Haruichi Furudate’s popular shounen manga of the same name, Haikyuu!! is an exhilarating and emotional sports comedy following two determined athletes as they attempt to patch a heated rivalry in order to make their high school volleyball team the best in Japan.Myanimelist Overview
Sport anime are also not my jam. Dramas are hard for me. Sport dramas are EVEN harder because I am competitive and have hard time watching people lose. But I love volleyball and my friend Megan says it is very true to the sport.
The only thing I can think will stop me from watching is if it is too long and drawn out. Usually anime and shows have me for 60 episodes. (Natsume’s Book of Friends is a happy exception.)
Terror in Resonance (2014) by MAPPA
Painted in red, the word “VON” is all that is left behind after a terrorist attack on a nuclear facility in Japan. The government is shattered by their inability to act, and the police are left frantically searching for ways to crack down the perpetrators. The public are clueless—until, six months later, a strange video makes its way onto the internet. In it, two teenage boys who identify themselves only as “Sphinx” directly challenge the police, threatening to cause destruction and mayhem across Tokyo. Unable to stop the mass panic quickly spreading through the city and desperate for any leads in their investigation, the police struggle to act effectively against these terrorists, with Detective Kenjirou Shibazaki caught in the middle of it all.
Zankyou no Terror tells the story of Nine and Twelve, the two boys behind the masked figures of Sphinx. They should not exist, yet they stand strong in a world of deception and secrets while they make the city fall around them, all in the hopes of burying their own tragic truth.Myanimelist Overview
I have had my eye on Terror in Resonance for a LOOOOOOONG time. Psychological thrillers are really interesting to me so I know this show is up my alley. The one thing that has kept me from watching it is the mature rating. I’ve grown up a bit thought and will probably be able to handle it better.
Fruits Basket (2019-2021) by TMS Entertainment
Tooru Honda has always been fascinated by the story of the Chinese Zodiac that her beloved mother told her as a child. However, a sudden family tragedy changes her life, and subsequent circumstances leave her all alone. Tooru is now forced to live in a tent, but little does she know that her temporary home resides on the private property of the esteemed Souma family. Stumbling upon their home one day, she encounters Shigure, an older Souma cousin, and Yuki, the “prince” of her school. Tooru explains that she lives nearby, but the Soumas eventually discover her well-kept secret of being homeless when they see her walking back to her tent one night.
Things start to look up for Tooru as they kindly offer to take her in after hearing about her situation. But soon after, she is caught up in a fight between Yuki and his hot-tempered cousin, Kyou. While trying to stop them, she learns that the Souma family has a well-kept secret of their own: whenever they are hugged by a member of the opposite sex, they transform into the animals of the Chinese Zodiac.
With this new revelation, Tooru will find that living with the Soumas is an unexpected adventure filled with laughter and romance.Myanimelist Overview
For those who don’t know, Fruits Basket is my favorite manga of all time. I saw part of the first anime Studio Deen did in 2001 and. . . I was severely disappointed. Now, I’ve seen the first five episodes for this particular show and stopped. Not because it wasn’t great! I decided I would wait until all the episodes were out and done so I could experience it fully.
Your Lie in April (2014-2015) by A-1 Pictures
Music accompanies the path of the human metronome, the prodigious pianist Kousei Arima. But after the passing of his mother, Saki Arima, Kousei falls into a downward spiral, rendering him unable to hear the sound of his own piano
Two years later, Kousei still avoids the piano, leaving behind his admirers and rivals, and lives a colorless life alongside his friends Tsubaki Sawabe and Ryouta Watari. However, everything changes when he meets a beautiful violinist, Kaori Miyazono, who stirs up his world and sets him on a journey to face music again.
Based on the manga series of the same name, Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso approaches the story of Kousei’s recovery as he discovers that music is more than playing each note perfectly, and a single melody can bring in the fresh spring air of April.Myanimelist Overview
I’ve also started this anime. I didn’t finish because its message and subject matter hit a little too close to home. I also went through a traumatizing time losing my love for music in college. When I was younger it hurt so bad I couldn’t even listen to classical music or play the piano. So, watching the main character experience that same pain was too much for me.
But I’ve grown since that time and I think I will make it through without breaking down.
Demon Slayer (2019) by ufotable
Ever since the death of his father, the burden of supporting the family has fallen upon Tanjirou Kamado’s shoulders. Though living impoverished on a remote mountain, the Kamado family are able to enjoy a relatively peaceful and happy life. One day, Tanjirou decides to go down to the local village to make a little money selling charcoal. On his way back, night falls, forcing Tanjirou to take shelter in the house of a strange man, who warns him of the existence of flesh-eating demons that lurk in the woods at night.
When he finally arrives back home the next day, he is met with a horrifying sight—his whole family has been slaughtered. Worse still, the sole survivor is his sister Nezuko, who has been turned into a bloodthirsty demon. Consumed by rage and hatred, Tanjirou swears to avenge his family and stay by his only remaining sibling. Alongside the mysterious group calling themselves the Demon Slayer Corps, Tanjirou will do whatever it takes to slay the demons and protect the remnants of his beloved sister’s humanity.Myanimelist Overview
So. I saw the first episode for this show and thought “NOPE. This is WAAAAAAAAY too sad for me.” But I know I’m missing out on its intriguing story and beautiful character animation, so I will square my shoulders and watch it. The only thing I can think will stop me is gore and a hopeless ending.
Made in Abyss (2017) by Kinema Citrus
The Abyss—a gaping chasm stretching down into the depths of the earth, filled with mysterious creatures and relics from a time long past. How did it come to be? What lies at the bottom? Countless brave individuals, known as Divers, have sought to solve these mysteries of the Abyss, fearlessly descending into its darkest realms. The best and bravest of the Divers, the White Whistles, are hailed as legends by those who remain on the surface.
Riko, daughter of the missing White Whistle Lyza the Annihilator, aspires to become like her mother and explore the furthest reaches of the Abyss. However, just a novice Red Whistle herself, she is only permitted to roam its most upper layer. Even so, Riko has a chance encounter with a mysterious robot with the appearance of an ordinary young boy. She comes to name him Reg, and he has no recollection of the events preceding his discovery. Certain that the technology to create Reg must come from deep within the Abyss, the two decide to venture forth into the chasm to recover his memories and see the bottom of the great pit with their own eyes. However, they know not of the harsh reality that is the true existence of the Abyss.Myanimelist Overview
Sigh. . . I’ve tried several times to find a medium to watch this show! It’s story and characters are so intriguing. I might have to sacrifice money or something to finally see it. From what I’ve seen from the trailers and reviews it is totally worth it.
Hunter x Hunter (2011-2014) by Madhouse
Hunter x Hunter is set in a world where Hunters exist to perform all manner of dangerous tasks like capturing criminals and bravely searching for lost treasures in uncharted territories. Twelve-year-old Gon Freecss is determined to become the best Hunter possible in hopes of finding his father, who was a Hunter himself and had long ago abandoned his young son. However, Gon soon realizes the path to achieving his goals is far more challenging than he could have ever imagined.
Along the way to becoming an official Hunter, Gon befriends the lively doctor-in-training Leorio, vengeful Kurapika, and rebellious ex-assassin Killua. To attain their own goals and desires, together the four of them take the Hunter Exam, notorious for its low success rate and high probability of death. Throughout their journey, Gon and his friends embark on an adventure that puts them through many hardships and struggles. They will meet a plethora of monsters, creatures, and characters—all while learning what being a Hunter truly means.Myanimelist Overview
Me not seeing this show all the way through is an utter tragedy. I know it is. Of all the shows on this list I’ve watched this one the farthest. What stopped me was time and the fact not all the episodes were out yet. By the time they did all come out I was in Russia with no anime access to speak of. Now is the time to watch and enjoy this show to the fullest!
Thank you for reading! If you have suggestions for other shows let me know! I’m always up for new things.
Anime April Mayhem! The Magic of Music in Anime, My Favorite Openings/Endings