Anime. What do you think of when you hear that word? Do you cringe, thinking of that one show you glanced at when flipping through the channels that definitely wasn’t up your alley? Or do you think of it fondly, holding to your hearts 5 or 6 favorite shows that will always be there for you when you need them? You may have guessed it already, but I love anime. Ok, so I am fairly particular
Madoka speaks the truth.
about which anime shows I watch. And I also can’t seem to watch shows that I loved from a long time ago. They aren’t the same to me anymore! I used to love Rouroni Kenshin with all my heart, but now when I try to re-watch it after years of watching newer shows…I can’t! It’s not the same! I still hold it close to me, but I think I’ll leave it alone so I can enjoy the memory I have of it. Do you have a show that you used to love, but can’t watch anymore?
However, I have a few new favorites I’d like to share. Lately, I only see shows if they are on Netflix. This holds true for animated shows and not! I honestly do not have time to commit to shows on regular TV and we don’t have a DVR or cable. Netflix it is! There are actually a lot of great anime shows on there. I was told by a few people that sometimes Netflix sometimes only has the second season of shows on there (like Mushishi apparently?!), so I may have to actually buy a few shows if I really like what I see so far.
Ok, enough of me rambling on and on! Here are a few of my new Netflix favorites. I could go on for hours, so I’ll limit myself to the three I watched last.
Your Lie in April
Synopsis: Piano prodigy Kōsei Arima dominated the competition and has become famous among child musicians. After his mother, who was also his instructor, died, he had a mental breakdown while performing at a piano recital at the age of eleven. As a result, he is no longer able to hear the sound of his piano even though his hearing is perfectly fine. Two years later, Kōsei hasn’t touched the piano and views the world in monochrome, without any flair or color. He has resigned himself to living out his life with his good friends, Tsubaki and Watari, until, one day, a girl changes everything. Kaori Miyazono, a fourteen-year old audacious, free-spirited violinist whose playing style reflects her manic personality, helps Kōsei return to the music world and shows that it should be free and mold breaking unlike the structured and rigid style Kōsei was used to.
Thoughts: I believe this one is fairly new to Netflix. It’s one season long, but wraps up nicely in my opinion. Here is a link to the wikipedia article about both the manga and the anime. I have not read the manga yet (sigh…money), but I definitely want to after watching the show.
The plot was fast-paced, heart-wrenching, with some great light-hearted moments.
Puella Magi Madoka Magica
Synopsis: In the fictional city of Mitakihara, Japan, a middle school student named Madoka Kaname and her friend Sayaka Miki encounter a small, cat-like creature named Kyubey. It offers a contract in which a girl may have any wish granted in exchange for obtaining magical powers and being tasked with fighting against witches. Meanwhile, a transfer student and magical girl named Homura Akemi tries to stop Madoka from making the contract with Kyubey at all costs. Madoka and Sayaka then meet Mami Tomoe, an upperclassman at the same school who is also a magical girl and offers to bring them along on her witch hunts so that they may learn of the responsibilities that come with being a magical girl. Wikipedia article.
Thoughts: This one has been on Netflix for awhile, along with a few of the movies. I thought this was was really well done. I was a little wary at first because the style of animation is so cutesy. But the cute characters definitely work to counter the dark feel of this anime in the best sorts of ways. This one is a bit graphic in times in terms of violence, if that bothers you. I haven’t seen the movies yet because I felt the anime finished in a satisfying way. I may change my mind and try them sometime.
Sword Art Online
Synopsis: In 2022, a Virtual Reality Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (VRMMORPG) called Sword Art Online (SAO) is released. With the NerveGear, a helmet that stimulates the user’s five senses via their brain, players can experience and control their in-game characters with their minds. On November 6, 10,000 players log into the SAO’s mainframe cyberspace for the first time and discover that they are unable to log-out. They quickly discover from Akihiko Kayaba, the creator of SAO and NerveGear, they must reach the 100th floor of the game’s castle and defeat the final boss if they wish to be free. Those who suffer in-game destruction or remove the NerveGear out-of-game will result in their real-life deaths. Wikipedia article about SAO.
Thoughts: I’ve now watched this one at least twice. There are two seasons in the first SAO and then another in SAO 2. The first season is definitely the best and they probably could’ve stopped there. The second one gets a liiiiitttle weird with the sister/cousin relationships, but (spoiler!) nothing happens. You’ll see what I mean. PHEW. But the first season is awesome. Kirito is a sword-slinging badass who is one of the best players in SAO. He works to help beat level after level, because no one can escape the game until they beat the final boss. Definitely one of my favorites!
Do YOU have any Netflix favorites I could try? I’m always looking for new ones. Tune in tomorrow for the letter B in the A-Z challenge!